The Republican Party or the Trump Party?

 

852 words 3 min 6 sec read

I  propose something radical.

It is regarding the Republican Party.

The Republican Party has lost its soul.

I share my thoughts at the above blog post:

Rebirth of the Republican Party?

In this post, I want to discuss an idea for the rebirth of the Republican party.

My first swat at the Republican party is in this post on 4/27/18 where I liken the party to mosquitoes.

I hope this post develops that subject clearly stated

Mr. Michael Gerson in the Washington Post on February 6, 2018, stated that the

Republican is now governed by the “lickspittle wing”  whose “cowardice is staggering”.

Today I will solve the problem for the Republican Party because that is what I do.

I point out deficiencies and then offer solutions.

(Although I must admit I mostly point out deficiencies when I am writing about the

Republican party.)

For the model of this solution, I track back to March 1854, when the Republican Party,

the GOP (Grand Old Party) was formed in Ripon Wisconsin.

The ideology of this party was conservatism, economic liberalism, social conservatism,

fiscal conservatism, with factions of Libertarianism and Right-Wing Populism.”

The Republican Party   was founded by anti-slavery activists and economic modernizers

found the party. They forged it out of the Whig Party.

The Whig Party itself was founded in 1834 to oppose the policies of Andrew Johnson. It

viewed itself as a moral sword to the actions of Johnson such as the removal of Indians

from their land and the supremacy of the United States Congress over the presidency.

So we now have the precedents of the Republican Party of today: economic liberalism,

social conservatism, and fiscal conservatism.

It also stood in opposition to slavery and pro-economic reform.

Both parties were successful in getting men elected as presidents:

Whig Party William Henry Harrison, Zachary Taylor, Winfield Scott, and Millard Fillmore.

The Whig Party was prominent from 1834 to 1860 when it was dissolved.

The Republican Party was prominent from 1854 to 2016.  Its first president was

Abraham Lincoln in 1860 followed by Ulysses S. Grant, William McKinley up to the 20th

Century.

The Republican Party was known for free homestead farms, a federally subsidized

the transcontinental railroad, a national banking system, a large national debt, land

grants for higher education (the foundation of land-grant colleges such as the

The University of Minnesota), a wartime income tax, permanent high tariffs to promote

industrial growth and high wages, a hard money system based on the gold standard. It

also created the foundation of a modern welfare state through the extensive program

of pensions for Union veterans. Regarding foreign policy, it is supported imperialistic

expansion of Hawaii, the Philippines, and the Panama Canal.

Through the early 20th century Republican Presidents included Warren G Harding,

Calvin Coolidge and Herbert Hoover.

It gained the reputation as the pro-business policies and heralded in the Wall Street

The Crash of 1929 and the Great Depression.

Other presidents were Franklin Roosevelt, Dwight Eisenhower, Robert A. Taft, Harry S. Truman, Richard Nixon, and Ronald Reagan.

Most recently elected Presidents were George H. W. Bush, George W. Bush, and Donald Trump.

Can you identify the trends listed above and juxtapose them onto today’s United States?

What characteristics of the early Republican Party are now prominent in the current party?

The electoral college elected in 2016 Donald J. Trump president.

What characteristics do you see in his policies that reflect the foundational principals of the Republican Party?

Tariffs yes that is easy BUT their underpinning theory has since been debunked.

This excellent article in “The Guardian” which lays bare the notion that “big lies are

founded on small truths”.

Do we see the policies of imperialism and despotism?

The rise of the nationalists (the very definition of dictatorship) and white supremacy?

Trump rose so high on hubris and the foundation of Joseph Goebbels works and he is

now poised to pay the price of his crimes against the United States.

Trump and his Trump Party have given American corporations and the most wealthy

Americans $1.5 trillion in wealth.

 

 

In turn, they were supposed to grab the economy and bring it to new heights. Instead,

they posted their largess to their accounts to increase the companies’ wealth not the

workers. (list examples of tax breaks)

This has led to a smoking hot economy that is now hitting the brakes.

The results will be like those of 2007 when the economy collapsed after Bush gave it a

false sense of worth with his generous tax cut.

This coming collapse will be worse than that one.

There is no elasticity in the economy.

The trade war with China adds another level of

uncertainty and requires a lot of currency.

The $1.5 trillion gift that is causing the collapse must be clawed back. The companies and

wealthy did not do what was promised.

Jobs were not created to the extent promised.

Cash was not brought back from overseas.

Sharing the wealth with common people has not been triggered.

We must change the structure of the economy if working people will be able to share in

the wealth and promise of this nation!

Republican Flag and Elephant - The Enemy of America Facebook

Thanks for stopping.

Craig

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Veterans – Blue Water Navy Vets have HEART and MACV Minnesota Assistance Council for Veterans

743 words read time 2 min 42 seconds

I have been promising myself that I would finish a post on Veteran’s health for months. I apologize that it has been so long, but health issues have kept me pretty busy. Doctor’s appointments you never seem to end.

Minnesota Assistance Council for Veterans

MACV

My first note is to commend the Minnesota Assistance Council for Veterans. This organization is committed to helping vets, especially those that are homeless. They have helped me thru some rough patches. I know that in the Cities they even went looking for vets during the 50 degrees below weather during the Polar Vortex of 2019. Real dedication to their mission.

Donations to help house homeless veterans is appreciated. Instructions on the website www.mac-v.org.

 

BLUE-WATER NAVY

Some long overdue news:  The law firm of Hill & Ponton P.A. Disability Attorneys, announced on January 29, 2019, the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit the Department of Veterans Affairs could not exclude Blue Water veterans from receiving the same benefits as other veterans who served in the Vietnam theater, also called ‘the Brown Water Navy’ or ‘boots on the ground’.

 The Blue-Water Navy, those vets who served aboard ships are now entitled to the same presumptive benefits.

The main disabilities covered are diabetes and heart disease from exposure to dioxin, better known as Agent Orange.

Procopio v. Wilkie is the case that restored the ‘will of Congress’ to all veterans of the Vietnam theater.

If you are suffering from these or other presumptive diseases contact your County Veterans Service Officer and he or she will help you file a disability claim with the VA.

Presumptive Illnesses

Diabetes mellitus

Diabetes mellitus also known as Type 2 diabetes devastates the sheath covering the nerves. Suffering includes deterioration of vision, cellulitis, edema, loss of blood flow resulting in the amputation of extremities and limbs.

Healthline.com is one of the easiest to understand resources for diabetes information. A newsletter arrives at least once a week and I think you can sign up for more.

The articles range from insulin injectors to a new drug that “helps the body replenish its insulin-producing cells.”

This article on healthline.com is an excellent article on the background and damage caused by Agent Orange.

VA’s “presumptive list” of diseases that are caused by exposure to Agent Orange now includes everything from non-Hodgkin lymphoma, prostate cancer, and multiple myeloma to Parkinson’s disease and ischemic heart disease”.

Ischemic Heart Disease is a “condition in which the blood flow (thus oxygen) is reduced in parts of the body”.  Other names are coronary heart disease and coronary artery disease. These can lead to heart attacks.

Pay attention to how you feel. Your body will tell you when something is not working right. The doctors can determine the cause.

This is a list of a few of the resources available on the American Heart Association website (use the above link). These are excellent resources.

 

Another great resource for medical issues is My Health eVet.com is a great resource for your health.

The topics online today are: ”Understanding Diabetic Nerve Damage”;
“Understanding Acute and Chronic Pain”; “Medical Questions: Get the Facts” and more.

Other resources on this site: apps for your phone and tablet: Mindfulness training and AIMS—Anger and Irritability Management Skills.
The VA has developed these apps for veterans and service members.

 

Self Doubt

This is an article in Inc.com by Carol Sankar on ways to overcome ‘Negative Self Talk’.

As a trained specialist in confidence training and research, she suggests three ways to eliminate “the megaphone from drowning out optimism”.

  1. “Stop Confirming Your Fears

“Avoid words and phrases which imply doubt and skepticism”. These phrases such as ‘what if I can’t’, “I don’t know how’, I don’t think I can’. These words disable your confidence.

  1. “Focus on the life you desire—not the challenges you’re facing

Visualize what you want in life and what you want out of life. This is not simple.

She tells us the secret: “ If you focus on your challenges, you will continue to feed your own limitations. Your language will begin to reflect your reality rather than the optimism of the journey ahead. Your language and vision will set the intentions”. “Focus on what is ahead.”

  1. “Network with other established founders and leaders

To achieve your goals spend time with the people who have achieved what you want. Gain “sound advice from people who have overcome challenges” and changed “their relationship with doubt.”

Image from Veterans Administration

REMEMBER THE VETERAN’S CRISIS LINE:

1-800-273-8255 PRESS 1

 

Thanks for stopping!

Craig

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MASS SHOOTINGS in America aka Why Men Keep Doing This

I originally posted this to my blog on February 17, 2018

August 18, 2018

2457 Words 10 minute 5 second read

Last night while I was writing a post to give another perspective, I looked back, and this post had blown away to some unknown realm.

I struggled for quite a while to find it again. I am not sure where I did I was getting pretty frantic by that time.

It is an excellent article and since I don’t want it to disappear again, I will type this piece in its entirety.

I hope Mr. Charlie Hoehn doesn’t mind.

I will type in his style, not mine (which will be an improvement I assure you).

He posted this article on October 3, 2017.

HIS WORDS

I’ll never forget April 20th, 1999.

I was 12 years old, sitting in art class in middle school. We were playing with clay and making sculptures.

Suddenly, our principal came on over the PA. Her voice trembled.

“I have an important announcement to make. All teachers and students need to hear this. I will wait 60 seconds for everyone to be completely silent.”

The next minute was eerie. My friends and I exchanged confused looks and nervously laughed. Our teach held her finger to her lips. Silence.

The principal’s voice came back onto the PA:

“There is a shooting at Columbine high school. All students are to go home immediately.”

Columbine was 15 minutes away from us.

I remember taking the bus home and walking into my house. My mom turned on the news. I recognized that fence. We’ve driven by that fence.

My mom knew the teacher. Dave Sanders. She’d substituted with him at Columbine.

In the last 18 years, we Americans have experienced too many of these shootings. And I want to share a few of my thoughts on why I think they keep happening.

By the way, this isn’t a political post about guns or the media. It’s a post about men and their emotional health.

Over the past few years, I’ve found myself in the mental health space. I’ve learned a lot. Particularly that men in the United States REALLY struggle in this realm and have very little social or emotional support. This affects men of every race and socioeconomic background.

I was watching Jimmy Kimmel’s impassioned, raw speech last night about the Vegas shootings. Like Jimmy, I felt sick and heartbroken by the tragedy. But something he said stood out to me:

“There’s probably no way to ever know why a human being could do something like this to other human beings.”

Sadly researchers know a lot about why human beings—particularly men-do things like this.

WHY MASS SHOOTINGS KEEP HAPPENING

It’s tempting to say the mass shooter’s motive was simply “pure evil”, or to blame the media or guns, but that absolves us of looking deeply at what each of us -as individuals, family members, friends, and community members might be missing.

Now, I’m not a psychiatrist. And I don’t know much about the Vegas shooter, I’m just a guy who studies mental health.

Again, this is not a political post about guns, for the same reason, it’s not a political post about weaponized cars. Easy access to guns is a part of the problem, but I’m not interested in the tool as I am in what causes a man to use it so destructively.

Nor is this a post in defense of the shooter, or to make him sound like a victim in any way. What he did was a horrific act. He is a murderer, and he is not excused from this by any stretch (though I truly feel sympathy for the shooter’s brother, who seemed to be totally caught off guard by this behavior, and now he has to deal with the aftermath for the rest of his life).

The goal of this post is simply to shine a light on what’s eroding men’s emotional health.

1 MEN IN THE UNITED STATES ARE CHRONICALLY LONELY

Boys in the United States-just like all human beings-need touch, caring, warmth, empathy, and close relationships. But as we grow up most of us lose those essential components of our humanity.

What’s worse: we have no idea how to ask for those things or admit we need them, because we’re afraid it will make us look weak.

As a man, you might be thinking, “Not me, I’ve got drinking buddies. I play poker with the guys. I’ve got friends.”

But do you have confidants? Do you have male friends who you can actually be vulnerable with? Do you have friends whom you can confide in, by 100% yourself around, that you can hug without saying “No home,” be without feeling tense or uncomfortable while you’re doing it?

For many men, the answer is “no”. So, we spend our time posturing instead.

From an early age, we have an unhealthy, ideal of masculinity that we try to live up to. Part of the ideal tells us the REAL MEN DO EVERYTHING ON THEIR OWN. REAL MEN DON’T CRY. REAL MEN EXPRESS ANGER TROUGH VIOLENCE.

The byproduct is isolation. Most men spend most of their adult lives without deeper friendships or any real sense of community. Not to mention a complete inability to release anger or sadness in a healthy way.

There is a fantastic documentary called “The Mask You Live in”, which explains how boys in our society are ultimately shaped into mentally unstable adults. My friend Ryan recommend this film to me, after confiding that he cried throughout the entire thing. I cried, as well.

Simon Sinek echoed similar insights on Glenn Beck’s show:

“We’re seeing a rise of loneliness and isolation. NO one kills themselves when they’re hungry; we kill ourselves when we’re lonely. And we act out as well.

In the 1960s, there was one school shooting.

In the 1980s there were 27.

In the 1990s there were 58.

In the past decade, there have been over 120.

IT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH GUNS, IT HAS TO DO WITH PEOPLE FEELING LONELY.

How we combat the loneliness that kids are feeling? All of them attacked people in their own community, and all of them attack people they blamed for their own loneliness.”

This loneliness compounds as men grow older.

Without deeper friendships or a strong sense of community, the isolation is soul-deadening and maddening. You are alone.

Any slight from someone you care about can feel emotionally traumatizing. After enough rejections and feeling like an outcast, you begin to believe that people are just cruel and not worth the effort. You perceive people as threats.

And the effects on our health are devastating. Here is Dr. Dean Ornish, the founder of the Preventive Medicine Research Institute, on the effects of loneliness:

“I am not aware of any other factor- not diet, not smoking, not exercise, not stress, not genetics, not drugs, not surgery- that has a greater impact on our incidence of illness, and [chance of] premature death”.

Before we ask, “How could he do such a thing?” we have to understand how that person felt on a daily basis, and how those feelings grew over the years.

2 MEN IN THE UNITED STATES ARE DEPRIVED OF PLAY OPPORTUNITIES.

You might be offended by this suggestion.

How could this guy talk about play after a shooting?!” Play is for kids!

Wrong.

Homo sapiens play more than any other species. It’s impossible to prevent a human from playing. We play shortly after we are born, and the healthiest (and least stressed) humans tend to play for their entire lives.

Play may be God’s greatest gift to mankind. It’s how we form friendships, and learn skills, and master difficult things that help us survive. Play is a release valve for stress and an outlet for creativity. Play brings us music, comedy, dance, and everything we value.

Above all, play is how we bond with each other-it’s how we communicate “I am safe to be around, I am not a threat.” Play is how we form connections with other humans.

The irony is that loneliness would not be a problem if we all got ample time to play. Not only would we have deeper friendships, we’d also have better relationships with ourselves, Play allows us to enjoy our own company.

THERE IS A STRONG CORRELATION WITH PLAY DEPRIVATION AND MENTAL ILLNESS.

When you deprive mammals of play, it leads to chronic depression. When you deprived a human child of play, their mental and emotional health deteriorated. Play suppression has enormous health consequences.

“But the Vegas shooter loved to gamble. He went on cruises!”

That’s not the type of play I’m talking about.

To better understand this dynamic, we need to look at the background of another mass shooter.

In 1966, Charles Whitman shot his wife and mother. The, he climbed up the tower at the University of Texas in Austin and shot 46 people. In total, he murdered 16 people. At the time, this was the biggest mass shooting of its kind in United States history.

Dr. Stuart Brown and his team of researchers were commissioned to find out what “The Texas Sniper” had in common with other mass murderers.

They gained a key insight when they examined their childhoods.

Brown recalls:

“None of them engaged in healthy rough-and-tumble play. The linkages that lead to Charles Whitman producing this crime was an unbelievable suppression of play behavior throughout his life by a very overbearing, very disturbed father.

Healthy and joyful play must be had in order to thrive. Boys need to wrestle with their dads, and they need to roughhouse with other boys. Parent and teacher need to play with their boys.

But more importantly, they need to encourage those boys to go out and play. And then, let them be.

IT’S 10 O’clock. DO YOU KNOW WHERE YOUR KIDS ARE?”

Ever since that famous ad aired, parents have shamed each other into watching their kids like a hawk.

If you let your kid walk up the street alone, you’ll either get a call from another parent, or the cops will pick them up. Our kids are stripped of their right to experience life on their own terms.

In an effort to improve our kids’ test and beef up their future resumes, we’ve stripped away nearly all of their free play opportunities. Recess has been sacrificed in the name of Scantrons, and pills are prescribed to the kids whose bodies and minds cry out for play.

The result: A generation of the most anxious, depressed, and suicidal American children on record.

This alignment with Dr. Peter Gray’s research, who studied the epidemics of mental illness and the decline in play:

“Over the past half century, in the United States and other developed nations, childrens’ free play with other children has declined sharply. Over the same period, anxiety, depression, suicide, feelings of helplessness, and narcissism have increased sharply in children, adolescents, and your adults…The decline in play has contributed to the rise of the psychopathology of young people.

This why I believe that mental illness may be the biggest health crisis of our lifetimes. Because those kids will grow up into isolated adults who don’t know how to play or seek out their friends when they are lonely. They have no emotional support.

They are alone.

3 MEN IN THE UNITED STATES ARE ASHAMED OF THEIR EMOTIONAL TRAUMAS.

In the most memorable chapter of “So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed”, the author describes the research of James Gilligan, a young psychiatrist at the Harvard Medical School in the 1970s.

Gilligan was invited to makes sense of the Massachusetts’s prisons and mental hospital, where she interviewed murderous inmates. He included in his notebook this heartbreaking observation:

“They would all say that they themselves had died before they started killing other people… They felt dead inside. They had no capacity for feelings. No emotional feelings, Or even physical feelings.

Universal among the violent criminals was the fact that they were keeping a secret. A central secret. And that secret was that they felt ashamed- deeply ashamed, chronically ashamed, acutely ashamed.

“I have yet to see a serious act of violence that was not provoked by the experience of feeling shamed or humiliated, disrespected and ridiculed.”

ALL OF US will face difficult times in our lives where we will experience shame, humiliation, disrespect, and ridicule.

Do you know what gets us through those hard times?

FRIENDSHIP: THE LOVE AND SUPPORT YOU GET, FROM THE PEOPLE YOU PLAY WITH.

Whatever the case, these factors about mass shooters are often true:

  1. THEY ARE DEEPLY LONELY. They have no significant friendships or meaningful relationships to rely on, and very few quality people to confide in or lean on.
  2. THEY EXPERIENCED ONGOING PLAY DEPRIVATION: Their innate ability was crippled, and they struggle to maintain a healthy emotional connection with themselves and others.
  3. THEY ARE DEEPLY ASHAMED. They experienced extreme ridicule, rejection, humiliation, or abuse.

Are there other factors at play here?

Absolutely. Mass shootings are complex, and so are people. They don’t fit perfectly into our narratives.

Do the above three factors always lead to murderous behavior:

Of course not. But over time, they shatter an individual’s emotional health. And that’s the point.

We’ve created a culture where the first two factors- loneliness and play deprivation- affect EVERYONE. And because friendship struggles to take root in this environment, we are more likely to be struck by the third factor-shame.

We cannot recover from emotional trauma without support from our friends, our community, our tribe. Without their help, we stay wounded and lost in the darkness.

Although we’re in the safest period in the history of civilization, these shootings will keep happening in America. They happen every single day. Guns are part of the problem, and so is the media. But there is a bigger problem:

WE LIVE IN A CULTURE THAT CONTINUALLY NEGLECTS EMOTIONAL HEALTH OUR BOYS AND OUR MEN.

The good news is that we-the men and boys of America- can save each other.

Reach out to someone who you think could be lonely or hurting and invite them to do something fun together. Keep inviting them. Build trust and confide in each other. Set the example by being a safe, supportive, and compassionate friend that they can be around.

If you’ve noticed their personality has drastically changed, invite them ours for several hours. Be there wit6h them. You could save their life.

CHARLIE HOEHN IS THE AUTHOR OF PLAY IT AWAY. HE HAS SPOKEN ON THE TOPIC OF MENTAL HEALTH AT THE PENTAGON, U.S. MILITARY BASES, STANFORD, AND TEDX.

You can get his books for free at CHARLIEHOEHN.COM.

Thanks for stopping.

Craig

BLUE ROSE ON ANGLE labled

 

 

Anger not Mental Illness

Date: February 18, 2018

Image of Sgt. Ivan Lopez his in helicopter. Sgt. Lopez killed three people at Ft Hood Army Base on April 2 2014. He then killed himself. Image by Puetro Rico National Guard via Reuters
Image of Sgt. Ivan Lopez his in a helicopter. Sgt. Lopez killed three people at Ft Hood Army Base on April 2, 2014. He then killed himself.

This is another great article on how not to rush to judgment.

People rush to condemn mass murders, especially of children in school as ‘Mentally Ill’. This disputes that knee-jerk reaction and is in addition to the article on the Las Vegas, Mandalay Bay.

The article appeared in Slate.com titled: “How to Stop Violence Mentally Ill People Aren’t Killers. Angry People Are.”  How to Stop Violence.

The article is by Laura L. Hayes Ph.D., a psychologist in Bethesda, Maryland. She works with adults, couples, and teens integrating mindfulness with traditional therapies.