Is Your Kid Learning Human Geography?

Mr. Wilson was the cranky history teacher in our small town high school. We were required to take at least three history courses over four years, and he taught all of them. As freshmen, we were told to study maps in the library on our own and learn all of the mountain ranges, rivers, nations, cities, oceans and seas, peninsulas and other topographical features of the entire globe. He never formally taught geography as part of our history classes. But if any student misbehaved in any history class, Mr. Wilson’s punishment of choice would be to stop everything and make the whole class take a 10-question pop quiz on geography. And if he was really cranky, he would whip out his “you’ll never get this one” list.

Of course, he used the same list of questions for decades. Fortunately I have an older sister who gave me her hard-earned “secret geography list” when she graduated. I think somebody had temporarily swiped the list from Mr. Wilson’s desk some years earlier and he never caught on. My sister admonished me to keep the secret.

Once I had the list, I misbehaved plenty, baiting Mr. Wilson into yet another geography quiz, and almost always scoring 100%. Over four years of high school, this became a personal feud between me and Mr. Wilson, and it made me somewhat unpopular with my classmates.

“Question number 7: What is the body of water southwest of the Philippines and northeast of Borneo?” Ha! Gotcha, Mr. Wilson. The Sulu Sea! I can still see his bald head turning red.

Last week I learned about another kind of geography. A young friend at my gym told me he would soon be starting his first teaching job at a local school. I asked him who and what he would be teaching. “Freshman Human Geography” was his answer. I had never heard of this course, but fearing the worst, I dug for more information.

“What the heck is human geography?”

“Well, it’s not like ordinary geography,” he explained. “We don’t teach about physical places. Instead we analyze the differences between people and cultures and how governments and societies can address and solve the problems that result.”

Gulp. My worst fear realized. He is teaching CRT – Critical Race Theory.

I live in an affluent South Carolina community with a highly-regarded school system. Our residents vote solidly Republican and we are in Ralph Norman’s (Freedom Caucus) congressional district. But I would bet not one in ten residents of my town has ever even heard of CRT. And if I explained that Critical Race Theory is part of the Marxist platform aimed at indoctrinating kids with the racist notion that all whites are oppressors and all non-whites are victims, they would gasp and deny that any such thing is possible in our vaunted school district.

I’ll also bet that my young teacher friend has never heard of CRT. He was just another skull full of mush who swallowed the leftist kool-aid he was handed for four years at his college, and he is happy to be serving kool-aid to kids for a living now.

I have never met any American, in my school district or not, who doesn’t fully subscribe to the Dr. Martin Luther King philosophy that we should judge each other based on the content of our characters rather than the color of our skin. It’s a universal American value, and revered as absolute truth. But today’s Democrat Party has thrown MLK, and pretty much all Americans, under the school bus in their frantic push for absolute one-party rule.

There has been a good deal of pushback against the CRT blitz the last few weeks, led by Heritage Action for America, and the Center for Renewing America. Parents are now confronting school boards and even state legislatures, demanding CRT be removed and precluded from K-12 curricula.

Meanwhile the complicit news media brushes off the protests as much ado about nothing, with liberal talking heads claiming CRT is not being taught in K-12 schools.

Jessica Anderson, executive director of Heritage Action, embarrassed the NEA by showing recent screen grabs of their website before they scrubbed sections about their plans to universally embed CRT in our K-12 curriculums. But that doesn’t mean our kids will escape the indoctrination. Driven by liberal Democrats at the federal level, our school boards, school administrations, and teacher ranks will continue to obfuscate and disguise their CRT ambitions under other names, like Human Geography. And it’s not the kind of geography we learned from Mr. Wilson.

The Marxist CRT movement is just one of a thousand poisoned arrows aimed at the heads of American families by the Democrats. Parents, do whatever you must to shield your kids and grandkids.

Tom Balek – Rockin’ On the Right Side

We don’t need no education
We don’t need no thought control
No dark sarcasm in the classroom
Teacher, leave them kids alone

Another Brick in the Wall – Pink Floyd

I’m Mad as Hell and I’m Not Going to Take This Any More!

Today I had an appointment for a physical therapy consultation. My neurologist recommended I get some PT for minor symptoms related to my benign brain tumor after surgery and more recent radiation treatments.

Now for some context. I am fed up to here with the political correctness, identity politics, science denial, lockdowns, and all the other nonsense thrown at us since the election by the overzealous leftists in power and the flock of sheep that follow them like lemmings. Put me in the category of “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take this any more!” Here’s that classic scene from the 1976 movie “Network” to place (or refresh) in your memory banks:

Back to the physical therapist. They required me to fill out an elaborate set of online records before arriving. I spent about an hour this morning listing details about a lot of stuff that has nothing to do with physical therapy. I had to choose one of 12 gender identities and one of 300 races/ethnicities – “prefer not to answer” was not an option. I selected “Siberian Eskimo” for my ethnicity and “other” for sexual orientation. I couldn’t wait for someone to ask me about either of those answers.

So I was a little bit short of patience already when I entered the office. One step inside the door, Caitlin, the receptionist, asked me to put on a mask, and I refused. “I will not wear a mask,” I said. “We are in the free state of South Carolina”. She started spouting their “corporate policy”. After an awkward stare-down, I allowed her to give me a mask. Then as she talked with another customer, I glanced across the room and saw the therapist talking to a patient and, you guessed it, the therapist was not wearing a face diaper.

“Caitlin,” I interrupted. “Look down there!”

She saw the maskless guy and blushed (sorry if that reveals her ethnicity). She blurted, “Well, he’s a therapist and he’s vaccinated!” She had not asked me if I was a medical professional, was vaccinated or had immunity by recovering from COVID-19.

I took off my mask, threw it on her desk, and said, “Bye bye!” Caitlin and her other customer both gasped wide-eyed as I turned and stomped out.

By the time I got home, fuming the entire way, my cell phone rang. The owner of the company had her script out, ready to defend her company’s unscientific, discriminatory policies. Needless to say I knocked each of her lame pitches out of the park. To her credit, she did make the call, and we had a long discussion. I asked her why her company cares about sexual orientation (unless they are bigots) and ethnicity (unless they are racists). I asked how, if everyone in her office is vaccinated, do I pose a threat to any of them, or them to me? She had no coherent, scientific answers, but was not deterred from her “policies”.

“We have offices all over the country, and we treat all of our customers exactly the same,” she said.

My reply: “Well, you have one fewer now! Do not bill me, Medicare, or my insurer!”

My friends, if we are going to take our country back, we have to put up a fight every time one of these sanctimonious little minions threatens our freedoms. We have to be mad as hell, and not take this any more.

Tom Balek, Rockin’ On the Right Side

Oh you’re so condescending
Your call is never ending
We don’t want nothin’, not a thing from you
Your life is trite and jaded
Boring and confiscated
If that’s your best, your best won’t do!

We’re not gonna take it
No, we ain’t gonna take it
We’re not gonna take it anymore!

WE’RE NOT GONNA TAKE IT – Twisted Sister


Fast Food Burgers on the Endangered Species List

Yesterday we pulled into a burger joint drive-through. We were in kind of a hurry. “Good,” I told my son. “There’s only one car in line ahead of us.” It was before fast food rush hour, so we expected to sail right through and be on our way.

We pulled up behind the first car, and waited. And waited. And waited. Finally, the guy in front of us got to place his order through the speaker box, and pulled forward. We got up to the speaker, and waited. And waited. And waited. The drive-through kid finally got on the speaker box and took our order – no explanation or apology. But the guy in front had not received his order, so we waited. And waited. And waited.

Cars were piling up behind us, half way around the block. After fifteen minutes, several drivers behind us gave up, pulled out of line and drove away. Five minutes later, we got to pull up to the window. “This is not my idea of fast food,” I complained to the window kid. “Do you know we waited 20 minutes?”

“I’m the only one here,” was his defense (meaning it was just him and the cook in the kitchen). Still, he was clearly operating in slow motion – it appeared to be a “slow-down” strike.

I wish this was just a one-time anomaly, but sadly, it isn’t. This same drama has been playing out for months in our neck of the woods, at every fast food drive-through. And don’t even think about eating inside, because almost none of the restaurants with drive-throughs still provide inside dining.

This seems to be a permanent and unwelcome change in the restaurant business model. We may never again be able to enjoy little things like fast, courteous service, napkins and condiments cheerfully provided, free self-served soft drink and coffee refills, and indoor seating.

Why?

China Virus • After nearly two years of hysteria by the government, the media, the schools, and the rest of the “establishment”, customers are still willing to trade comfort, fun, and value for a false sense of security. Many businesses use the China Virus as an excuse for everything they don’t want to do. The fast food guys sell as many burgers as they did before the pandemic (maybe more), but without the cost of cleaning tables and restrooms and providing free condiments and refills. Plus they can significantly reduce staffing.

Like the government mandates, their China Virus “safety” practices are hilariously unscientific. My favorite local Chinese food joint, for instance, changed from full-service to carry-out only, keeping ten feet of separation between the customers and the cashier. Rather than take cash or credit card from your hand, she pushes a “tray” across a long table for you to drop your payment. When she retrieves your money, she places your order in the tray and pushes it back to you. The tray, like the door, the table, the pen, and most of the restaurant, has not been cleaned once in the two years it has been in use! Not to mention the cash and cards that are home to billions of bacteria.

Endless Unemployment and Stimulus Checks • Businesses, especially those in lower-paid service industries like fast food, find it impossible to get and keep employees at any rate of pay. Every single fast food restaurant around here has a “help wanted” sign, and the going rate at the more successful ones is $16 per hour – that’s $33k per year, plus benefits, not exactly an after-school gig. Many former restaurant employees are using the same China Virus excuse to stay home and receive government funds. Our current administration promises more of the same on a massive scale, in a naked attempt to buy votes from laborers, entice illegal immigrants, and cause an economic crisis that ostensibly only their brand of fundamental societal change can solve.

Sneak preview: expect shortages and big prices for Biden-gas this summer as the gas truck driver shortage hits. They went on unemployment when the China Virus tanked the economy, and they ain’t coming back any time soon. Biden’s abandonment of pipeline construction and energy production won’t help either, long-term.

I’m going to save my gas, stay home and barbecue my own burgers. Without major pushback, we won’t stop the slow freight-train of woke fundamental change.

Tom Balek – Rockin’ On the Right Side

No song today, I just had to give you this clip from the classic movie “Good Burger”.

I’ll Give You Money!

Ah, America – the land of opportunity, where any entrepreneur with a good idea can get rich. All you have to do is be in the right place at the right time with the right scam.

So here’s the next big opportunity.

Americans no longer have to show up to vote, right? And mail-in ballots do not need to be verified in any way to be considered valid, as many of our states have proven in the 2020 elections, right?

The old-school method for getting stinking rich by being elected to office in Washington, DC has been to collect huge sums of money from lobbyists and rich fatcats and then buy advertising that will make the voters hate your opponent. For example, Democrat Jaime Harrison and incumbent Republican Lindsey Graham collected and spent about $230 million on hate advertising in their recent senate race. But this technique is now obsolete. SC voters already hated both of them before the advertising. Harrison had more money and bought more advertising, but South Carolina loves President Trump, so we plugged our noses and voted for Graham, hoping he would support Trump.

But wait a minute – if that kind of fatcat money is available to candidates, and there is no control over mail-in ballots, why go through all the hassle and risk of advertising? Why not just buy votes directly on the open market?

I think I am going to run for Lindsey Graham’s seat next time around using a combination of old-school and new-school tactics. Like the current group of “corrupticrats” in DC, I will collect a ton of lobbyist/fatcat money by promising legislation that will make them even richer. But instead of spending it on hate advertising, I will create a website where voters can send their mail-in ballots, marked for me, directly to my campaign manager, who will conspire with corrupt postal workers and poll employees to dump them in the ballot boxes. In return for their ballots I will send each voter a Visa gift card for the going rate, which was $130 per vote this year. If you can collect or create 100 ballots I will send you $13,000, and I don’t care how you get them.

It’s the American way – supply and demand, efficiency of production, stuff like that. Oh, but it’s dishonest, you say? Tell that to CNN and Google.

Tom Balek – Rockin’ on the Right Side

All I need is someone to believe in me
Even if you’re losing
Watching from behind
I’ll give you money, I’ll give you lovin’
Everything

I’ll Give You Money – Pete Frampton

Basketball Lives Matter

I keep seeing articles and posts and newscasts telling me that blacks and whites in America are supposed to hate each other.

That may be true in downtown Minneapolis (I doubt it) but it’s not even remotely accurate in my South Carolina town.

At least twice a week I go to my local YMCA for pickup basketball games. Now, in the interest of full disclosure, I am white, 66 years old and one year removed from major brain surgery, but I just love to play basketball. Most of the guys I play with are in their twenties, a few high schoolers, a few middle aged, and I am the “old man”. I feel blessed to be able to compete well enough to be part of the group.

Our players are about half black and half white. If you believed the network news, you would think that when we pick teams for a game, it would be the angry black guys against the angry white guys. And that a black guy would never pass it to me, an old white guy. And that if a black dude gets knocked down, I would never stop to pick him up, or vice-versa. And that we couldn’t possibly laugh together, compliment each other, root for each other, and just generally have a great time sharing our love for basketball.

But it’s true.

At the store, in a restaurant, at a gig, in church, I see people of all colors and classes smiling and enjoying each others’ company. I see black families, white families, mixed-race families interacting with warmth and joy. Kids play together without even noticing skin pigment.

Racism, black or white, is just not tolerated in my town. And I suspect that my town is pretty typical of most American towns. Before you call me naive, I must admit that bigotry does exist, but that is mostly on the part of far-left idealogues, who insist on categorizing people by physical characteristics instead of judging character.

So what’s up with all these network and internet reports of out-of-control racial hostility in America? COULD IT BE THAT SOMEBODY IS TRYING TO MANIPULATE US FOR POLITICAL PURPOSES?

Tom Balek – Rockin’ On the Right Side

I said if you’re thinkin’ of being my baby
It don’t matter if you’re black or white

I said if you’re thinkin’ of being my brother
It don’t matter if you’re black or white

Black and White – Michael Jackson

Blackometer Needed

I am not a racist. I am not a racist. I am NOT a racist!

No matter how many times a news pundit or protester or politician says I am a racist, I deny it – only God knows what’s in my heart. I subscribe to MLK’s wisdom: judge a man not by the color of his skin, but by the content of his character.

I don’t deny that racism in America did exist, or that it still does exist (with bias by somebody of every race against somebody of every race). But our nation has made great progress in overcoming bias in my lifetime. I just don’t see much real racism on a daily basis, and I live in the South!

So I have a hard time understanding the Black Lives Matter movement and demands for reparations and charges of white privilege that are in the news every five minutes. These serve two purposes: to create conflict and profitable ratings for the liberal news media, and to promote violent anarchy, Marxism and one-world government for George Soros and the other evil rich guys.

I see mostly white liberals protesting, and I suspect these are the real racists. Liberals want to categorize everybody by pigment, gender, and any other subgroup they can use to divide and conquer. And if they, the white liberals, have misgivings and guilt about racism, then they think all white people must be racists, too, and must be made to feel guilty. Why do liberals automatically assume every unpleasant incident is racially motivated? Some people are just a**holes to everybody, regardless of pigment. But most Americans have no axes to grind, and don’t care about skin color any more.

I just can’t understand how BLM (Black Lives Matter, not the Bureau of Land Management) plans to distribute their proceeds and their punishment based on race. How is “blackness” defined, anyway? Do you use a color chart from Home Depot? Should really-really black people be paid more reparations than “coffee-with-cream” people? Do their lives matter more?

Or is there a test that precisely determines the percentage of African Slave ancestry a person has in their DNA? What about the millions of black immigrants from Africa who arrived in the USA in recent decades with no slavery in their family histories – are they entitled to the same reparations as an American black whose great-grandfather was a slave in Alabama? What about Asian and Middle-Eastern people who are descendants of slaves – do they get reparations and preferences, too, even if they are not black?

What about mixed-race people? Barack Obama had a black father and a white mother. Is he only oppressed 12 hours per day, or six months per year, as opposed to LeBron James, who is oppressed all the time? Do these guys both get reparations even though one was elected president by white voters and one makes a gazillion dollars selling his shoes to white kids?

Same thing with white privilege. How snow-white does one have to be, and how rich, to have privilege? There are employment cases all over America indicating that white job applicants (especially males) face insurmountable discrimination in many companies and governments against minorities. Their lives don’t matter.

If you can’t define a problem, you can’t solve it. So until we come up with some math and technology to measure “blackness” and “whiteness” BLM will have to go back to the drawing board. There will have to be a functional “blackometer” and maybe even a “whiteometer” for this BLM and white privilege stuff to work.

Maybe Joe Biden and his Chinese buddies already have this technology. After all, he determined in a split second that if an African American didn’t vote for him, “He ain’t black!”

Tom Balek – Rockin’ On the Right Side

Black Betty had a child (Bam-ba-Lam)
The damn thing gone wild (Bam-ba-Lam)
She said, “I’m worryin’ outta mind” (Bam-ba-Lam)
The damn thing gone blind (Bam-ba-Lam)
I said “Oh, Black Betty” (Bam-ba-Lam)
Whoa, Black Betty (Bam-ba-Lam)

Black Betty – Ram Jam

Rep. Ralph Norman Defends Gun Rights

I was with Congressman Ralph Norman Friday morning for his “coffee visit” town hall at the Rock Hill Diner.  When we went to the reserved area, a group of women in red t-shirts (Moms Demand Action) planted across from us, intent on dominating the event with their radical anti-gun agenda.  They claimed that they are not anti-2nd amendment, but as the discussion developed, their talking points turned toward hard-left “Resist” statements, i.e. anti-Trump, pro-abortion, anti-gun rights, etc.

Many of their arguments and claims were naive if not childish, often without any factual basis, even just plain false. I was seated next to Ralph and defending gun rights.  While we agreed on some points, we countered other claims and demands with reason and facts, and the activists grew more frustrated and aggressive. They demonstrated little knowledge about firearms, gun law, law enforcement, legislative process, etc. They even tried presenting a fake news item and we proved it was untrue.

At one point I told one of the activists, “I am a concealed carrier, and if a terrorist came in that door shooting the place up, I would defend you.  Doesn’t that give you comfort?” Incredibly, she said NO!  She doesn’t believe I should be allowed to own a gun, and said she would prefer to “talk it out” with the terrorist.  That’s when the congressman was asked by another attendee if he is also a concealed carrier.  Norman reached into his jacket, pulled out his .38, laid it safely on the table, and stated he is a carrier too, and he would defend himself and them.  He said he carries all the time except when he is in Washington, DC and he if anybody comes after him with a gun, he had better be a good shot, because he will be shooting back.  The gun wasn’t exposed more than a minute or two.

Nobody was intimidated.  Nobody was afraid.  Our photo, published in the Rock Hill Herald, shows everybody smiling. Congressman Norman was calm, affable, warm and gentle with these ladies.  We all agreed on some of their points.  But that wasn’t good enough for them. The congressman did upset one of the ladies by admonishing her for the proliferation of F bombs and other profanity all over her group’s web page.  He pointed out that children see Facebook pages too.  It is interesting to note that within hours of the incident the Congressman’s Facebook page was filled with vitriol and profanity, some of it from the very people who we met that morning.  It appears that these messages have since been “scrubbed”.

After their failed attempt to bully the Congressman, the “Moms” ran directly from the diner to the newspaper office, and their embellished story was printed as gospel by the press.  It hit the wires and was instantly viral in the national news media.

Congressman Norman made a statement on his Facebook page, but already the national “Resist” movement had been mobilized, filling his page with expletives, F bombs, and ugly hatred.  Norman asked me to help develop a response, and with some media-savvy friends from DC we worked out a plan which has been fairly well received. You have probably seen his second response .  We have been getting good support from conservative groups around the country.  We set up an interview on Fox and Friends for Monday morning.

This is a pivotal moment for defense of the 2nd Amendment and the NRA.  The “Moms” group is funded by and was sent on this mission by out-of-state money and is, as Norman said, hell-bent on eliminating private gun ownership.  We believe they were also accompanied by, if not directed by, one of Archie Parnell’s officials. They pretended to be concerned about child safety, but when I questioned them they defended the murder of 650,000 American babies per year by abortionists (latest available statistics), so it’s clear this is not about children for them.

The clip on the right is an example of the kind of people we face from the left (apologies for the language).  It takes no small measure of strength and purpose to run for office against today’s brand of Democrats.

Congressman Norman is absolutely on the right side of this battle, and the radical leftists will find that they picked the wrong target for an ambush.

Tom Balek – Rockin’ On the Right Side

Don’t take your guns to town, son
Leave your guns at home, Bill
Don’t take your guns to town

Don’t Take Your Guns to Town – Johnny Cash

 

 

Whenever I get a request for a Johnny Cash tune at one of my weekend gigs, I know they are expecting “Folsum Prison Blues”, the standard Cash bar song.   But I sing this one instead, the story of a good young man who died defending himself and others against a bad guy.

I’m Taking Names and Keeping Score

scoreboard

Would you watch a basketball game if nobody kept score?  Of course not.  If nobody keeps score, nobody wins.  If nobody wins, the contestants will lose interest and probably not put in much effort.

Besides, if nobody keeps score, how do you know which team or player is the best?

Okay, I’ll get to the point.  When we elect a congressman or a senator, we assume he or she is doing what we want them to do.  But are they?  Unless you have the time to look up their votes on every issue, you can’t possibly know.  And even if you did, you would have to know which votes are important and which are just “show votes”, intended to make a legislator look good even though they don’t really accomplish anything.

Congress has an 11% approval rating, but incumbents are re-elected 96% of the time.  If we don’t like what they are doing, why do we keep re-electing them?  The answer:  they get away with lousy performance because voters aren’t keeping the score.

Fortunately, there is a great way to measure your congressman’s performance.  It’s the Heritage Action Scorecard.  Heritage Action is the activist wing of the acclaimed Heritage Foundation, and their aim is to hold members of congress accountable.  The Scorecard is the perfect tool.  Heritage Action identifies “key” votes – issues which have a direct and important impact on quality of life in America.  The scorecard shows how each member voted on every key issue, and accumulates an aggregate score.

My South Carolina congressman, Ralph Norman, has a 95% rating in the current session, which compares to 68% for the average house Republican.  That puts him near the top of the pack.

Norman score card

Digging deeper, I can see that only one of his votes did not agree with Heritage Action’s recommendation.  The Scorecard makes it easy for me to thank my congressman when I like his vote on an issue, or to ask for justification when we aren’t on the same page.   And it sure makes the check-writing decision easier at election time.

As a Montana native I still follow the politics there.  I can’t help but notice Senator Jon Tester’s 0% rating.  I hope my Big Sky friends are noticing too.

Too many citizens think they have no control over what happens in the nation’s capital.  That couldn’t be further from the truth.   With a tool like the Heritage Action Scorecard and a telephone, every voter can hold his members of Congress accountable, and can make an informed decision at primary and general election time.

Tom Balek – Rockin’ On the Right Side

Rockin' On the Right Side

I’m winning
I’m winning
I’m winning
And I don’t intend on losing again

Winning – Santana

Money Can’t Buy Me Love – Or Votes

The recent Republican primary runoff victory by Judge Roy Moore over Luther Strange in the race for Jeff Sessions’ Alabama senate seat is just the latest in a string of expensive losses for the Swampers.  Nearly a full year after American voters turned the pollsters and pundits upside down, the DC good-ole-boys are still in full Trump Denial.

Here are some of the Swampers’ embarrassing defeats:

  • Breitbart News reports Strange lost the runoff election by 20%, spending an estimated $30 million ($137 per vote) compared to Moore’s $2 million ($7 per vote).  This is after Moore pounded Strange in the first primary despite being outspent 25 to 1.  Strange was heavily funded by Mitch McConnell’s Senate Leadership Fund and the NRA.
  • Issue One claims Democrats blew $32 million in a failing effort to push Jon Ossoff past Republican Karen Handel for the Georgia congressional seat vacated by Tom Price, who has already resigned his administrative office.  Issue One says Handel spent $23 million, but other analysts claim Handle was outspent 8 to 1 – the truth is probably somewhere in-between.
  • Hillary Clinton spent about $15 per vote, three times the amount Donald Trump invested on the presidency in 2016.

The first shot over the DC Establishment bow was fired by Dave Brat in 2014, when he sacked Eric Cantor, Republican house majority leader, in the Virginia congressional primary race.  Cantor had the backing of the entire swamp, including the Chamber of Commerce, the NRA, and the National Association of Realtors.  All of the Republican money and every loose dollar on K Street was bet on Cantor – $5.5 million in all.  Brat had a measly $200,000 and a warm smile from the Tea Party.  It’s fitting that Brat’s first name is David, as Goliath (Cantor) fell in a large, thunderous heap.  Brat has since been a stellar Freedom Caucus member.

My Congressman, Ralph Norman (R-SC), spent a little bit more than his opponent, Archie Parnell, seeking the seat vacated by Mick Mulvaney a few months ago.  And most of that spending was his own money.  “I don’t want to owe favors to anybody,” he told me early in the race.  And he has stayed true to his word, already taking strong positions against the powerful, big-money lobbyists.  Norman is also on the Freedom Caucus.

Maybe the Swampers will finally “get it” and stop trying to buy political offices against the will of the people, who are tired of business as usual on Capitol Hill.

Nah, it won’t happen.  The DC Establishment Swampers will continue to do what Swampers do – spend other peoples’ money.  They can’t help themselves.

Tom Balek – Rockin’ On the Right Side

 

I don’t care too much for money,
Money can’t buy me love!

Can’t Buy Me Love – the Beatles

 

The lads are rockin’ it with their Rickenbackers and Voxes!

 

 

Red Light Rummies, Center Lane Simpletons, Nascar Ass Cars, and the Scooter Jerk

Is it just me or is bad driving an out-of-control epidemic?

I know people have complained about bad drivers since cars ran on kerosene.  But I swear, in the last year or so, I am seeing auto insanity at a level I never thought possible.

A couple of days ago I drove over the bridge to Charlotte and back.  20 miles each way, through suburban and city traffic.  The stuff I saw on just that one trip would have set my hair on fire, if I had any.

First there was the Scooter Jerk.  The heavy traffic on our four-lane expressway had slowed in one spot to maybe 15 mph, but the Jerk figured he shouldn’t have to wait in line like everybody else.  So he gunned his little machine to its pathetic full speed, squeezing his little scooter butt between the two lanes of commuters and truck drivers, down the dotted line to his important destination.  Drivers honked and beeped their displeasure to no avail.  But then the congestion cleared and the traffic resumed its normal 55 mph pace.  Except for everybody in the right lane.  We were all stacked up and cussing behind the Scooter Jerk, who was maxed out in the middle of our lane at 30 mph.

I finally got past the little Jerk and was cruising at posted speed, singing third harmony with Tom Petty.  Until I had to jam on the brakes to avoid hitting a Nascar Ass Car.  These guys are all over the place.  They can’t tolerate being behind anyone, so as soon as a car-length opening appears in the adjacent lane, they dive into it to gain a couple of feet advantage.  No turn signal, of course.  Hell, Kevin Harvick don’t need no stinkin’ turn signals!  The Ass Cars slalom down every road, weaving back and forth through the lanes, squeaking by bumpers and fenders.  After all the Nascar maneuvering, they might get to work 50 seconds earlier.

The light just ahead of me turned yellow, so I pulled my big red Ram to a stop.  But the Redlight Rummy behind me had other plans.  He ripped his steering wheel to the right, lurched around my truck and half off the street, and zoomed through the red light in front of me just in time to avoid getting clipped by the crossing traffic.  I really thought it was gonna be a T-Bone, and I don’t mean steak.

Running red lights is an art form around here.  Nearly every time I stop at a red light two or three brainiacs continue through the intersection in the other lanes.  The drivers behind me are ticked off at me.  “Doesn’t that bozo in the red truck know there’s a three-second safety buffer between the red light and the green going the other way?”  And remember the “right on red” rule?  Did you think you were supposed to stop first before you turn right?  Me, too.  Boy are we suckers.

Many of our streets have two lanes in each direction, and a center lane that can be used to turn either left or right in the middle of the block.  At least that’s the plan for most of us.  The privileged Center Lane Simpletons think it is their own private express lane, driving down the middle for blocks or even miles at high speed and giggling at how stupid the rest of us are for staying in our lanes and waiting our turn.

It’s anybody’s guess why bad driving has become so commonplace, so suddenly.  Maybe it is rebellion against Trump and any other authority.  It could be we have a new generation of drivers who grew up on participation awards and continuous self-esteem building who can’t be bothered with traffic laws that might interrupt their social media participation.  Our silly rules just don’t apply to them.

Maybe cops overlook traffic infractions because 1) they don’t want to risk offending anybody, 2) they don’t get paid enough to put up with crap from self-centered narcissists, 3) they don’t want to get shot, or 4) the last traffic citation issued in the U.S. was in 1986 and they have forgotten how to write a ticket.

My advice for a long and happy life:  when the light turns green, count to five, and then look both ways before you start.

Tom Balek – Rockin’ On the Right Side

Roxanne, you don’t have to put on the red light
Those days are over . . .
You don’t care if it’s wrong or if it’s right

Roxanne – the Police