Reacting to Crises vs. Thinking About Tomorrow

crisis-economica-empresas-internetEvery now and then I complain that the news media/liberal government is totally geared to our tiny little attention spans (the news media and liberal government are now inseparable and indistinguishable). They fully understand and exploit how soon we forget one earth-shaking news story when the next one comes along.  We don’t care whether the last crisis was explained, let alone resolved. Instead we lurch ahead to the latest shocking crisis.  And the news media/liberal government seemingly never runs out of crises.  We’re so busy dealing with the latest crisis that we never take the time to look ahead.

Do you feel manipulated?

A few weeks ago the earth stopped rotating because Central American kids were walking across our southern border expecting (and receiving) amnesty.  It was 24/7 news.   What happened?  The hand-wringing, the speeches, the headlines, the passion, the crisis – it all just . . . stopped.

Benghazi?  Forgotten.  Kidnapped Nigerian girls?  Who cares.  Even the Ferguson riots don’t matter today.

The VA scandal?  Hmmph.  The IRS targeting of conservative groups?  No big.  Trayvon Martin?  Operation Fast and Furious?  Free birth control pills for Sandra Fluke?  Syria?  Ukraine?  Hamas lobbing rockets into Israel?   Fagettaboutit.

I thought ObamaCare was a BFD.  Joe Biden said so.  But I haven’t heard anything about it in the news for a long time.  Have you?  Everything must be just peachy.

Today it’s all about ISIS.  Or ISIL.  (Why can’t the news media/liberal government just pick one label?)  The shocking beheadings supercede any and all previous shocks. Until the next shock.

Rahm Emanuel said, “Never let a good crisis go to waste.”   Hillary Clinton doubled down on the same strategy.   They are disciples, along with Barack Obama, of Saul Alinsky and the Cloward-Piven Strategy, which advises socialists to stir up as much crisis as possible in order to drive the frightened and under-informed into the warm and waiting arms of a big-government oligarchy. Cloward and Piven were deep-thinking socialists from Columbia University – Barack Obama’s alma mater.  But I digress.

Wouldn’t it be great if our political leaders would, just once, look ahead a little instead of just reacting to the latest crisis?

They could be figuring out how to match up the capabilities of the work force with the needs of employers.  Or maybe what role our tremendous energy resources could play in the world economy.  We could be working on a mathematical solution to our insolvent social security system (it is do-able).  Shoot, maybe somebody could be thinking about how to deal with the cancerous radical Muslim ideology that threatens to overwhelm the politically-correct Western world.  Our president says, “we don’t have a strategy yet.”

We need political leaders who are thinking about tomorrow to replace those who only react to the latest crisis.

Tom Balek – Rockin’ On the Right Side

Rockin' On the Right Side

Don’t stop thinking about tomorrow
Don’t stop, it’ll soon be here
It’ll be better than before
Yesterday’s gone, yesterday’s gone

Yup, the gig with the USC marching band – Classic!

No One Ever Is To Blame

U.S. Capitol, Senate Office BuildingsIt must be great to work for the federal government.

The pay is outstanding – the CBO says wages and benefits for almost all federal workers are much higher than for the same jobs in the private sector.  Federal employees  get extra paid days off, like extra holidays, personal leave time, snow days, sick days, etc.  They get full pay for not working whenever the President chooses to shut the government down rather than live within a budget.  They can take early retirement from their federal jobs after 20 years if they are 50 years old.

Heck, while private sector managers work 45 – 55 hours per week, the upper-half of the federal food chain works only about half-time.  I have offered a standing challenge for many years (and done the exercise myself many times):  pick any manager-level federal employee, at random, from the government phone directory and call his or her office after 2:00 pm on Monday through Thursday, or after 12:00 pm on any Friday.  You will never, never, never reach that person.  Never.  Try it!

But the best thing of all about working for the federal government is: nobody ever gets fired.  Once you land a federal job, you will get your full paycheck, pay raises, ever-growing benefits, and bonuses for the rest of your life, no matter how poorly you perform.  Turnover is virtually non-existent.  Even the guy who was written up for farting at employees 61 times in 17 days was not reprimanded.

Jeff Neely, the GSA executive who helped put together the million-dollar conference in Las Vegas for his 300 hard-working office jockeys, is a rare exception – he actually got fired.  But he was reinstated eleven months later with full back pay.

My Congressman, Mick Mulvaney (R-SC), at one of his outstanding recent town hall meetings, told us, “The Veteran’s Administration has 330,000 employees and only about 500 have been fired in the last ten years.”  Meanwhile executives in the VA received bonuses based on fictitious reports about their pristine performance while soldiers died waiting for health care.  Director Eric Shinseki was powerless to fire anybody, and committed political hara-kiri by resigning.

Congressman Mulvaney told another stunning story about a meeting he had with an upper-level HUD executive.  He was grilling her about some problem in her agency, and she was having none of it.  “Don’t give me a hard time,” she said.  “I don’t make that much money and it doesn’t matter whether I do a good job or not.”   She had absolutely no fear of discipline from a United States Congressman.  Is that job security, or what?

And it’s not just the mid-level federal employees who are totally unaccountable.  When pressed for evidence that she knew would implicate her in a world-class corruption scandal, IRS director Lois Lerner made up a story about seven simultaneous hard-drive failures that ate her e-mails.  The odds of that happening are one in 79 billion.  Nobody has been held accountable.

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is made of Teflon, too.  She never has recanted the lame excuse that terrorists murdered our Libyan ambassador and his brave defenders because they were upset about a Hollywood video.  One of the terrorists admitted planning and executing the Benghazi attack, but knew nothing about any video, and the CIA was listening in on terrorist phone activity during the attack, which never mentioned any video.   She still deflects questions about her failure to provide adequate protection after it was requested, saying “what does it matter?”   And nobody has even asked yet why the ambassador was in Benghazi in the first place.  Not only is she not accountable for the fiasco, Clinton is the current leader in the 2016 presidential race.

President Obama carries a long list of excuses for the many failures of his administration.  Most of them blame his predecessor.  The latest failure is the border crisis that resulted from his open invitation to illegal immigrant children to enter our country and enjoy the amenities.  When he finally did go to Texas to meet with Governor Perry, who is trying to deal with the situation, he spent most of his time shifting the blame.

I seldom agree with John Boehner any more, but I jumped up and cheered when, in utter exasperation with the Obama administration, he cried, “He’s been president for five and a half years.  When is he going to take responsibility for SOMETHING!”

But hey, it’s the government.  No one ever is to blame.

Tom Balek – Rockin’ On the Right Side

Rockin' On the Right Side

Doctor says you’re cured but you still feel the pain
Aspirations in the clouds but your hopes go down the drain
No one ever is to blame.

Howard Jones – No One Is to Blame

 

 

I want to thank all the many great songwriters and performers who inspire and enrich my blog topics.  This is one of the best “fits” – music to message – yet, I think!  Here’s a great live performance by Howard Jones, very much enjoyed by his audience. 

 

My Best Friend, Barack, Would Like You To Have A Free Cell Phone Too!

As you know, my friend Barack gave me a free cell phone a while back.

Hillary-Clinton-What-Difference-Does-It-MakeI don’t use it, but I still have it just in case I need to call Hillary and ask her who wrote Susan Rice’s make-believe talking points about the Benghazi attack.  You know, after seven committee investigations, they still haven’t got around to answering that simple question.

IRS-sOr I might need it to ask Speaker John Boehner why he doesn’t think Susan Lerner needs to explain how so many Tea Party groups and their contributors got singled out for “special treatment” by the IRS.

I probflotus_mugshot_four_by_three_s640x480ably should use my Obama Phone to call my friend Barack’s wife, Michelle.  I have been meaning to ask her how many of the Nigerian girls were released by the terrorists after she “selfied” her hashtag #BringBackOurGirls.

Anyway, it looks like the Obama Phone (Lifeline Assistance) program is still going full speed ahead.  I got a letter the other day asking me if I have any friends or relatives who might need a free cell phone.  It says:

Dear Tom:  (I was kind of surprised they used my name — Barack always calls me “Friend”)   We hope you are benefiting from your (free phone).  Now you can help others benefit too, by spreading the word to your family and friends!  If eligible, they can also apply for Lifeline Assistance and get a FREE phone with 250 FREE voice minutes each month and 250 FREE texts each month.  Voicemail, call waiting and caller ID included!

We’ve enclosed two applications for you to share with family and friends who live at a different address.  If you need more applications, please ask your family and friends to visit (our website) or call (our number).

Since you are my friends and family, I thought I had better let you know that our government would just love to give away more free cell phones.  You know, they are printing all that money at the Federal Reserve, and it just keeps piling up and getting in the way.  My friend Barack and all of the wonderful people in Washington, DC want to keep their streets clear so their limos can get to those fun parties, like the correspondents’ dinnercarlos_slim_widens_lead_as_worlds_richest_manYou can help them out!  Just take one of these free Obama Phones, and they can shovel up some of that money and send it to Carlos Slim (the world’s richest man, and a big Obama donor).

Isn’t it wonderful living in America, where anybody can get a free cell phone, and nobody has to pay for it?  We get free food stamps and free Obama Care.  I can’t wait until the Obama Cars program starts up and we all get free cars!

pelosi-boehner-obama-reid-gettyp.600x400Our friends in Washington, DC, like Barack, and Boehner, and Pelosi and Reid promise they will give us Americans free stuff as long as we vote for them.  And they will even give free stuff to people who are not Americans as long as they vote for them too!  How cool is that!

Boy, have we got it good, or what?

 

Tom Balek – Rockin’ On the Right Side

Rockin' On the Right Side

 

 People let me tell ya ’bout my best friend!

 

 

 

 

 

I Didn’t Just Fall Off A Turnip Truck

“No matter what you’ve heard, if you like your health care plan, you will be able to keep your health care plan.  Period.”



“Your premiums will go down.”



“We have four dead Americans . . . What difference does it make?”



“We’re the most transparent administration in history . . .  so long as I’m president, I won’t stop fighting to eliminate waste and abuse in Washington . . .  to eliminate what we don’t need to pay for what we do . . . to rein in exploding deficits . . . and I’m going to keep on fighting for real health insurance reform.”



Here are 65 more lies.



Call me and my conservative friends racists, obstructionists, uneducated “crazies”Accuse us of being the new Ku Klux Clan.

At least we know better than to believe much of anything this group has to say.

Tom Balek – Rockin’ on the Right Side

Rockin' On the Right Side

Well now I don’t read that daily news
‘Cause it ain’t hard to figure
Where people get the blues
They can’t dig what they can’t use
If they stick to themselves
They’d be much less abused

I Know A Little – Lynyrd Skynyrd

My favorite Skynyrd song!  Too much guitar-power for one band – enjoy!

One Step Forward, Two Steps Back – the Obama Tango

DC Celebrates Inauguration With Gala BallsThe relationship between government and citizens is a delicate dance.  In recent years, our federal government has insisted on taking the lead role, forcing citizens to step consistently backward, giving up their personal freedoms and national dignity.  But recently the music has changed, and our president takes us by the hand to do the “Obama Tango” – an intricate,  passionate dance with steps forward and backward and all over the place.

The Obama Tango:

One step back:  Congressional hearings reveal the utter and apparently willful failure of the administration to defend the Libya embassy compound and personnel, and attempt a disgraceful coverup by sending U.N. ambassador Susan Rice to lie about it on all the major TV networks.

One step forward:  Benghazi-gate finally gets some mainstream media coverage as a result of the hearings.

One step back and a slap in the face:  President Obama selects Rice as his next National Security Advisor.  What a slap in the face to the families of those who died representing the USA and defending our embassy and personnel, and to the American people who have always believed the word security implies honesty.

Another step back:  The federal government is caught abusing the privacy of reporters and news agencies including the Associated Press.

One step forward and a turn:  The mainstream media, whose fawning and “thrill-up-the-leg -ing” over the “Unvetted One” was the single biggest factor in Obama’s election and re-election, turn against their former lover.   While defense of the Constitution has not been a priority with the fourth estate for a long time, they are reminded that “freedom of the press” is in there somewhere.  Mainstream America has a good laugh at Mainstream Media’s expense – serves them right.

One step back and a pelvic thrust:  The IRS systematically targets conservative groups and contributors for harsh treatment over the last several years, while throwing lavish parties on the taxpayer’s dime.  The administration pretends it knew nothing about their political adversaries getting screwed.

One step forward, then grab and double-slap:  The media, already upset at Obama and his crew (see above), grabs the momentum and gives him a slap, followed by a back-slap when they learn that the EPA has been setting up hidden “man rooms” in warehouses where its employees relax with couches, TVs, microwaves, etc. instead of laboring at their desks.

Stand still:  It turns out the NSA has been gathering phone, e-mail, credit, web traffic and other information about every US citizen without our knowledge or consent.  Citizens ask why data is collected from everyone instead of just the bad guys.  Obama says, “I believe in the right to privacy, but there are some tradeoffs involved in our need for security.”

One step forward, deep dip, and kiss:  The Obama administration, in a surprising concession to hunters and stockmen, announces that the feds will lift the ridiculous protections for the gray wolf that was “reintroduced” to the lower 48 states, resulting in untold damage to livestock and the decimation of elk herds and moose in Montana and other western states.

After all these years of only stepping back, it’s refreshing to get in a few forward steps.

Tom Balek – Rockin’ On the Right Side

Rockin' On the Right Side

I take 2 steps forward, 2 steps back
We come together cuz opposites attract
It ain’t fiction, just a natural fact
We come together cuz opposites attract

Paula Abdul – Opposites Attract

Paula Abdul live in Japan, 1991 – kinda cheesey stage show, but the music is solid with a smokin’ band and backup vocalists.

The End of Football – and Hillary?

nfl-collisionI played high school football in small-town Montana.  I wasn’t particularly good at it, but I loved the sport.  To this day I and my family, like most Americans, spend a good chunk of our time and money following the monsters of the midway.  Football has become more than a pastime – it is a juggernaut industry, and until recently its meteoric growth in popularity seemed limitless.  But I digress . . .

It was a kickoff play, and I was the “contain” guy on the end.  My job was to make sure the kick returner did not get outside of me and have a clear path down the sideline.  He caught the kick near the sideline, on my side of the field.   I was barreling down the sideline, full speed, and the returner motored straight toward me.  Yep, it was a full-speed, head-on train wreck.

We were both seeing stars and, with assistance, wobbled off to our respective benches.  But the cobwebs cleared in a few minutes, and we were soon right back in the game.

And that is what will be the end of football.

A four-year study was recently completed on the effects of CTE (chronic traumatic encephalopathy).  Scientists studied the brains of 85 deceased athletes and soldiers, mostly football players.  They discovered that serious brain damage was not always the result of one or more major concussions; it is just as likely caused by repeated, smaller jolts to the noggin.

While professional boxers were commonly “punch drunk” after their careers, most of us were not aware of the devastating effects of CTE until we saw Muhammad Ali reduced to a mumbling zombie at a relatively young age.  There were sad stories in professional football, like Mike Webster, who suffered, among other injuries, amnesia, dementia, and depression from his later football years until his death at the age of 50.

As players get bigger and faster (largely thanks to steroids) the hits become progressively more devastating.   Many successful players have had their careers shortened by concussions, and the inevitable lawsuit barrage has begun.  Junior Seau, star linebacker with the Chargers, committed suicide in May, and CTE was implicated.

The “concussion crisis” is threatening the game itself, at every level.  Two Pop Warner kids’ coaches were suspended when five boys reportedly suffered concussions in the early minutes of one game.

While there is little doubt that CTE exists and has wreaked havoc on the lives of many sufferers, there is also the likelihood that it will serve as a handy excuse for a variety of bad decisions.  When Jovan Belcher of the Chiefs shot his girlfriend and then himself earlier this month, some were quick to blame CTE.

hillaryAnd when Hillary Clinton was called to testify before Congress about her baffling failure to prevent, mitigate, or correctly report the murder of our Libyan ambassador and those who attempted to protect him at Benghazi, she declined to appear, invoking the “concussion” defense.   She reportedly fainted from dehydration and hit her head, although she did not seek medical attention.

I’m going to miss football, but there’s a silver lining.  Next time I forget my wedding anniversary, or throw my socks in the laundry hamper inside out,  I’ll just explain, “Honey, remember that football game when I was a sophomore . . . ?”

Tom Balek – Rockin’ On the Right Side

Rockin' On the Right Side

Don’t you know it hit me like a hammer
Hit me like a ton of lead
You know it hit me like a hammer
You know it hit me, baby

Hit Me Like A Hammer – Huey Lewis

Shrinkage: Our Embarrassingly Tiny Attention Span

Have you heard anything lately about the September 11 debacle in Benghazi?  Me either.

In the weeks before the election, Obama and Clinton told us repeatedly that they would have to complete an investigation before they could explain why they lied repeatedly about the attack and the American deaths. benghazi_attack_us_politics_2012_09_12

Did they ever complete the investigation?  Is there an investigation?  Would they reveal what was learned if there actually was an investigation?

Maybe citizens think that Obama won, so there’s no point investigating any further, or even discussing what has been uncovered.  Congressmen Issa and Chaffetz appeared to be very interested in getting to the bottom of the disaster.  What happened?

Certainly the mainstream media will not besmirch their anointed ones.   In the absence of any news, we Americans will either assume the matter has been satisfactorily resolved, or will forget it ever happened, our tiny attention spans distracted by the latest “crisis dujour”.   The story would be buried forever but for reporting by bulldog conservative blogs such as Brietbart.com.

Here is a great synopsis and reminder of the severity and importance of the Benghazi story, and the cold-blooded complicity of our administration:

Let’s not let this important story, or the memory of Christopher Stevens, Sean Smith, Glen Doherty, and Tyrone Woods, fall victim to attention span shrinkage.

Thanks to EG Pettis

Tom Balek – Rockin On the Right Side

Rockin' On the Right Side

Ba de ya, say do you remember
Ba de ya, dancing in September
Ba de ya, never was a cloudy day

September – Earth Wind and Fire