But there is no joy in Mudville…

This country is founded on choice. We chose a president recently and unless there are some extraordinary circumstances that choice will stand as the decision of the Electoral College. This is our process. For the past few days, I’m reading that “I’m so worried about the country” as if these people have a lock on our future and how the next four years will – WILL play out. They project their fears into today and expect the worse that could possibly happen because they lost. I wish I had your foresight and knowledge of future events. I’ve been worried for this country for the past forty years… and from where I sit, it isn’t getting any better. Right now, it’s not our government that concerns me… it’s the people of this country that concern me the most. Especially the “Snow Flakes” protesting the election. Maybe deleting “Civics Class” from the High School curriculum was not such a great idea… Understanding our government is an important part of being a citizen of this country… it’s not just memorizing a few facts but understanding how it works and where it’s broken.

For the past eighteen or so months we have all endured outrageous claims from a diminishing host of contestants, then finally two. (There were two major party selections; I do not mean to diminish the other independent candidates…) The selection for mortal combat was set for these combatants to fight tooth and tong to settle the score once and for all. Every American has a stake in this; with everything to lose and everything to gain depending on the victor. We rest assured that only one combatant will emerge from the arena. Many claim that the system as designed is flawed – fatally – and that the system no longer serves the Republic. It remains however, the process by which our president is selected. One combatant won the popular vote and one garnered most of the Electorate votes. What to do America? We are split again… Here we stand divided between the Queen and the King. Who should we follow and what should we do? Cannot our god save us? Where is he when we need him? (I find it most interesting that we intentionally separate church and state in our laws, yet we call upon god almighty to help in our most desperate hours.) Our celebrities and civic leaders have piled on promising to move if the wrong combatant wins. How many of them will actually follow through? (I wonder if Canada really wants our trash. I suppose we could ask… But then they could use the tax revenue… Any bets? I have some empty boxes and packing tape…)

First I would strongly suggest that you learn about our form of government and especially the Electoral College. This is the system by which this election is made. First learn… then understand that we are bound to this system until it changes. Do your own research. Don’t listen to the media. They have license to pervert the truth. Until then, suck it up and move forward. No amount of protesting will change this fact… (If you want to protest something, take on how we treat our military veterans. Why do we spend billions of dollars on foreign aid, when our veterans go hungry, homeless, and ignored? That’s a great cause.)

Next, please use your critical thought processes and consider, no recall that the phase prior to voting is called… electioneering and there is no actual intent to fulfill and/or realize any of the campaign promises. The track record is abysmal. Only a very small percentage of promises are implemented and those usually center on quid pro quo. It should suffice that none of the pre-election rhetoric will make it to prime time so unclench your sphincters and relax for a minute. By the way, which campaign promise did you believe?

For now we continue to rehash Tuesday’s event and discuss it ‘ad nauseam’ entering the “should a’, could a’, would a’ ” zone for solace. Hoping to make sense of why so many people thought differently than you and why they are all… WRONG! Your favorite didn’t win. You bought into the rhetoric and promises and attacks and hatred and misinformation and advertising spins and lies. This is electioneering in our country. We expect the other combatant to lie, but our favorite would NEVER stoop that low or push misinformation or misdirect the press for personal gain… Would they?

Now that we’ve all had a little time to sooth our bruised egos and smooth over the ruffled feathers, or had our fill of congratulatory arm-waving it is time to settle into our new world. The point is that nothing will change the way you feel. Your pain and or elation will dull and the newness of the Prez-Elect will fade. The market is already in rebound and settling into a new and higher quiescent state: more money will change hands. The rich will get richer and the poor will lament their lot in life. The disenfranchised will not be franchised and those living their alternative lifestyle will not concede their paranoia. The erosion of the middle class will continue to feed the lower class non-contributors and life will go on.

My opinion: We don’t know how to win and we certainly don’t know how to lose. We want it all our way and we want it now. We are the Burger King Generation. This extends throughout everything in our lives. After all, we have rights and we are entitled. My friend Greg calls it “Our Overdeveloped Sense of Entitlement.” I like this phrase and have used it several times.

Since precious few of us were present at each and every occurrence and incident, we take the word of our media for an accurate account of these events. This is where it all falls apart for me. They have shown over the past thirty years that they have an agenda. It may not be the individual agenda of the reporter but, the owners of these media empires certainly have them. They bet big on turning public opinion and shaping the future of the various combatants in the eyes of the public. Let me state it another way for clarity. The media is biased toward the political parties and their combatants. They align with the platform of the political party and promote the agenda of their favorite. So if you think that there was much honesty in reporting, you are missing the intent of having this amount of power and leverage with the public. As for the allegations and accusations… can you honestly believe that either person would survive in public life if any of this was true? Really??? This only supports our narcissism and disappointment that one of these combatants won and the others lost. Now because the other combatant won, we feel compelled to rally against the winner citing chapter and verse of each and every alleged transgression in attempted vindication for the loser. But he said… But he did…

This whole thing is about self. It’s all about me. There is nothing outside of me. There is no one more important than me – that’s how we feel. If we don’t get what we want we’re taught to do anything and everything in our power to attain that goal… Anything goes. ANYTHING! Especially whining and destroying other people’s property… Even burning the American Flag… You call it protesting, I call it vandalism and the willful destruction of private property. Your intended ends do not justify your means! We are socialized to use any tactic available to get what we want – that include compromising our morals and ethics to make it happen. The two combatants for the presidency showed us that. Look at the past eighteen months and consider the promises and claims made by the two front runners. How could they possibly fulfill those promises? Where do you imagine the energy and money would be found? We demand free speech but god help the person that doesn’t agree with our point of view… Where is the freedom in that?

You’re hurt and disappointed or you’re elated that your candidate either won or lost. We act as if they belonged to us when in reality we belong to them as soon as you accepted their promises… when you bought into the rhetoric – they owned you. You were bought and paid for by that combatant. What does this mean for you personally? What promise did you hang your hat on? Which promise made you turn out to vote for “A”, “B”, or “C”?

Was it the Mexican wall? Was it the promise of free education? How about the deportation of all illegal aliens and the cessation of immigration for Muslims? What was your trigger? What was your payment? Think about it… Really think about it and consider what would it take to make that happen? Will we return to the Japanese internment camp of WWII? Will we revisit the Nazi round-up of Jews for the concentration camps? Will we have the “Bataan Death March” or “Trail of Tears” to relocate the undesirables to their new home or to new reservations? Can you support the purchase of governmental positions? Do you support the corruption that is rampant in our government? Where do you stand? Which do you support? What will it cost you personally? What is the cost to your fellow Americans? What promises were made in private that are now due and payable?

Let’s take the example of “The Wall” as a simple exercise. Was the reference to a physical wall, because that’s what everyone imagines or visualizes. A twenty-foot tall concrete and steel wall protected at the top with barbed wire or razor wire to prevent people from climbing it. Or was it simply a misinterpreted metaphor for limiting access to the US border? I don’t know that this is true or not, but you can see how quickly and easily a statement or reference can be and often is distorted. It then becomes fact and truth. But is it really? It is our passion and fear that drives these visions and that fuels our misinterpretations? And of course, our ever vigilant, totally truthful, and unbiased media has no part in this sensationalized view…

We are facing a new chapter in our history. Remember this is a country of choice. We often don’t like someone else’s decision, but our opinion cannot deny them their choice. It just means that we are different. That’s just how it works and the sooner we come to grips with this unpleasant and irrefutable reality the better we will all be. This Republic usually operates on majority rule. This past election is an example of that. Even though one combatant won the popular vote, the other was awarded the prize based on a more salient criterion: Electoral Votes. But it was still done by the majority.

I have several friends categorized as LGBT. As far as I’m concerned this is a label and like all labels further divides them from everyone else. What their particular personal decisions have to do with anything is beyond me. I know they are frightened and extremely concerned but the attack ads and misinformation from the battle. This collateral damage will not heal quickly. In fact, it may never heal. I urge you all to find the real source of these claims and statements. I think you’ll find the truth is in your candidates’ closet. FUD – Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt are powerful, powerful allies in sales. This tactic gets the prospect thinking about the possibilities and the worse case scenarios as you paint them. It puts the power squarely in the hands of the seller. They are concerned and so am I. Not because they are targets, but because they believed it.

We just can’t accept that someone else’s opinion has as much value as ours. When people and in this case many people chose differently, we still piss and moan about their choice. So rather than standing tall as Americans and accepting the Vox Populi and unifying behind our selected leader we fight to further splinter the country because our contestant didn’t win…

There are processes in place to properly change our government. It is all about what we want collectively as Americans. It is about what is best for all of us. Yes, some people will descent and others will rally in support. That’s what makes this a great country… IF you truly believe that the process as it stands is broken or antiquated, change it. Do your part to make this country better and more appropriate for our times. Don’t take matters into your own hands – use the process to make the change… But see there is  another problem. We’re horribly impatient. We want it our way and we want it now!

Mr. Trump is not even in office and many of us have already condemned him or wish to see him fail. I saw a great quote Tuesday… “Wishing President Elect Trump failure is like hoping the Pilot of the plane you’re on will crash.” Think about that… We’re all in this together.

Grow Up! This isn’t about you… it’s about us!

The outlook wasn’t brilliant for the Mudville nine that day:
The score stood four to two, with but one inning more to play,
And then when Chafee died at first and O’Malley did the same,
A pall-like silence fell upon the patrons of the game.

A straggling few got up to go in deep despair. The rest
Clung to the hope, which springs eternal in the human breast;
They thought, “If only Clinton could but get a whack at that—
We’d put up even money now, with Clinton at the bat.”

But Sanders preceded Clinton, as did also Jimmy Web,
And the former was a hoodoo, while the latter was a cake;
So upon that stricken multitude grim melancholy sat,
For there seemed but little chance of Clinton getting to the bat.

But Sanders let drive a single, to the wonderment of all,
And Web, the much despised, tore the cover off the ball;
And when the dust had lifted, and men saw what had occurred,
There was Jimmy safe at second and Sanders a-hugging third.

Then from five thousand throats and more there rose a lusty yell;
It rumbled through the valley, it rattled in the dell;
It pounded on the mountain and recoiled upon the flat,
For Clinton, mighty Clinton, was advancing to the bat.

There was ease in Clinton’s manner as she stepped into her place;
There was pride in Clinton’s bearing and a smile lit Clinton’s face.
And when, responding to the cheers, she lightly doffed her hat,
No stranger in the crowd could doubt ‘twas Clinton at the bat.

Ten thousand eyes were on her as she rubbed her hands with dirt;
Five thousand tongues applauded when she wiped them on her shirt;
Then while the writhing pitcher ground the ball into his hip,
Defiance flashed in Clinton’s eye, a sneer curled Clinton’s lip.

And now the leather-covered sphere came hurtling through the air,
And Clinton stood a-watching it in haughty grandeur there.
Close by the sturdy batsman the ball unheeded sped—
“That ain’t my style,” said Clinton. “Strike one!” the umpire said.

From the benches, black with people, there went up a muffled roar,
Like the beating of the storm-waves on a stern and distant shore;
“Kill him! Kill the umpire!” shouted someone on the stand;
And it’s likely they’d have killed him had not Clinton raised her hand.

With a smile of Christian charity great Clinton’s visage shone;
She stilled the rising tumult; she bade the game go on;
She signaled to the pitcher, and once more the dun sphere flew;
But Clinton still ignored it and the umpire said, “Strike two!”

“Fraud!” cried the maddened thousands, and echo answered “Fraud!”
But one scornful look from Clinton and the audience was awed.
They saw her face grow stern and cold, they saw her muscles strain,
And they knew that Clinton wouldn’t let that ball go by again.

The sneer is gone from Clinton’s lip; her teeth are clenched in hate,
She pounds with cruel violence her bat upon the plate;
And now the pitcher holds the ball, and now he lets it go,
And now the air is shattered by the force of Clinton’s blow.

Oh, somewhere in this favored land the sun is shining bright,
The band is playing somewhere, and somewhere hearts are light;
And somewhere men are laughing, and somewhere children shout,
But there is no joy in Mudville—mighty Clinton has struck out.