Posted by: johnhourihan | April 3, 2017

What does, “Make America Great Again” mean?

I posted this first a little over a year ago.

Wouldn’t it be nice if, when President elect Trump says, “Make America Great Again,” he means to bring it back to a time when a man didn’t kick someone when they were down, a man’s word was his bond something as good as a signed contract, when a man who was down on his luck could “put it on the cuff” to feed his family, when more affluent people felt it was a privilege to help feed those who were less fortunate, when doctors billed patients according to their ability to pay, when the pews of a church were filled on Sunday with good Christians, when a man’s worth was not decided by the content of his bank account or the color of his skin, when Christians were people who were happy to clothe the naked, feed the hungry, heal the sick, and do it without judging those they helped, when the arbitrary boundaries between countries did not give us an excuse to hate or kill, when money was still the root of all evil and having a lot of it did not make you a good man or woman, when we trusted those in our government to try to do what was right, and when white supremacists and other racists were looked down on as people who were stupid and didn’t know any better. Wouldn’t it be nice if that was a time he was shooting for? But I really don’t think any of that is on his time-warp radar. I think it might be a bit more realistic. I think he means back to a time when there were no unions or civil rights laws, or women’s rights laws, or any regulations on industry. I believe he means to a time when the government didn’t step in to help those who were being worked to death and not being paid enough money to feed a family, back to a time when our fathers could red-line entire cities and towns to make sure the neighborhood didn’t go to Hell, and back to a time when we could invade smaller countries because we could, and under-paid migrant workers were the lifeblood of corporate farms, and back to a time when those who complained about any of it could be legally silenced with bullying, a time when women knew their place, barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen with their mouths shut, and minorities knew their place in the back of the bus, and only affluent white men could be certain that “those laws don’t apply to us.” In short, back to a time when we had “liberty and justice for some white people.”
I’m afraid those who voted for Mr. Trump may have felt the first part of this was the goal. It never was. The second part is. And now you are beginning to understand.

Posted by: johnhourihan | March 14, 2017

EXCERPT – The Mustard Seed 2095 – John Hourihan

Chapter One
“Let there be among you a person who understands. When the crop ripened, he came quickly carrying a sickle and harvested it. Anyone here with two good ears had better listen!” – The Gospel of Thomas, Nag Hammadi, Codex II
“There are three classes of people: those who see. Those who see when they are shown. Those who do not see.” – Leonardo da Vinci

It was warm for June and getting warmer as Campaign Formulator Sixth Level Raphael Aronson, half way up the outside wrought-iron stairway to his apartment building, paused to let his breath catch up with him. “Jesus,” he said. “I don’t believe this heat.”
He wiped the sweat from his forehead with the back of his right hand and looked out over the hazy cityscape below from the safety of the ninth floor of the Radisson Building. He lived on the eighteenth floor. His whole body was drenched from the walk home and the climb up the side of the building. With the systematic eradication of the central federal government, beginning in the first few decades of the millennium nearly 75 years ago, most people had moved back to the cities. They didn’t all fit. It was crowded, but the outlying towns were just too “uncontrolled.” This state was one of the ones that had given up and let their police forces go and their infrastructure dissolve. From then on local boards, dominated by those who could make money, now made the laws. For instance, the small Massachusetts town Raphael had come from as a boy was now being run by the company that owned the water. The company was owned by Tod Berga, who was suspected to be the richest man in the country if not the world. Raphael Aronson looked down the side of the granite building. He was happy to be here in New Clovis. Life was good.
“It’s like a mountain,” he thought, “and I live in a cave in its side. But with a TV.”
Below him, Enterprise Boulevard came to a “T” with Republic Avenue just at the entrance to his building. He never entered the building at the downstairs doorway because the climb inside was stifling compared to being outside in the free air. Well, it was sort of free, Raphael thought. His electric bill had recently added a small charge at the bottom called, “Your fair share for clean air.” He thought it ironic that the power companies had done away with all regulations and polluted the air and were now charging their customers to cut down on the filth they had put in there themselves. “Wouldn’t it be nice if they were just better people,” he thought.
Enterprise, a street that long ago was the heart of the financial district, was now a mile-long downhill gauntlet of cracked roadway bordered by crumbling sidewalks. Raphael thought that he could remember when automobiles used to fill the street with blaring horns and screeching tires taking the turn too fast, and drivers shouting out the opened windows at each other. That was before the decimation of the Middle East by the French and Americans in the third decade of the century turned the only oil fields left into a glowing desert, the sand having turned to glass from the bombs. The government explained to everyone after the end of the Middle East war that there was no more oil left for consumers. The Republic had compensated everyone for the gas-powered automobiles they turned in and banned the manufacture of new ones. Within a few decades the population was ready to absorb an all-out ban on driving. The auto manufacturers were soothed with new orders for war vehicles and material. There were new war plants established throughout the country, and it became one’s patriotic duty to live near one and work there, so there were plenty of jobs, and people no longer needed to drive long distances to work. It was like beating the plow shares, 18-wheelers and family cars back into weapons. Now, with all the cars gone, Enterprise was a frighteningly raucous walkway of city people heading to and from work, walking down the center of the road equidistant from the side-dwellers of homeless families in makeshift tents, and black market vendors selling cigarettes, music vids, beer and TV minutes, and the pick pockets and thugs on roller skates or motorized skateboards who, because of the ceaseless boredom, were looking for a chance to change what they did yesterday into something new for today. There were some one-story century-old houses tucked in between three- and four-story buildings, but most of the zone was full of tents tucked between the buildings. Whenever his walk home from work arrived at Enterprise, Raphael would pull back his un-tucked shirt to expose his .38 revolver. It made the walk home feel safer even though pretty much everyone else had a weapon too and the un-policed world lived under the threat of mutually assured individual destruction. The second law of the New Republic guaranteed that everyone could have a gun. It had been a remnant of an earlier time, like so many of the rules. Of course, also like so many of the rules, the second rule was counter-weighted by the sixth rule. “Thou shalt not kill, except in war.”

Posted by: johnhourihan | January 31, 2017

He’s pissed off the wrong group

Sally Q. Yates stood up to the president, or more appropriately to Steve Bannon our acting president when he penned an executive order that was possibly against the law and most likely against the constitution. He fired her, but there were some others who stood up also. They were judges Ann Donnelly, Leonie Brinkema, Allison Burroughs and Dolly Gee. Then of course there was Judge Thomas Zilly. Notice anything? Five of the six were women. I think maybe Donald pissed off the wrong group and they haven’t forgotten. And you can’t fire federal judges. They will be there for life.

Posted by: johnhourihan | January 29, 2017

a presidential riddle

Here’s a riddle: What is the difference between these two groups of predominantly Muslim countries? Group one: Saudi Arabia, UAE, Egypt and Turkey. Group two: Iraq, Iran, Syria, Somalia, Sudan, Libya and Yemen. Group two is the group of countries Donald Trump has banned from travel to the United States. Group one is the Muslim countries where Donald Trump has business interests according to the New York Post. The other difference of course is that No person from group two has ever come to our country to do us harm. Not true for group one.
By the way, anyone who had doubts about what I said a few days ago about Russian arrests and our own election hacking, the story has hit the new York Times today.

Posted by: johnhourihan | January 27, 2017

Who leaked the Russia/Trump information?

Something was reported around January 25 that should interest us. It happened in Russia. At a meeting of a group that used to be called the KGB, the New Newspaper reported that armed guards entered, walked up to Serge Mikailov the deputy chief of the cyber unit, put a bag over his head and dragged him out. He wasn’t heard from for a month and then it was reported he was in prison and charged with treason for leaking information to a foreign power. Shortly after, the deputy director of counter intelligence, a man whose job it was to make sure spies don’t leak intelligence to foreign powers, was also arrested. The man who gave us the dossier on Trump’s alleged links to the Russians was a former UK spy who gave us the info and then dropped off the grid. The newspaper is the one that was formed when Mikail Gorbachov took the money he got from winning the Nobel Peace Prize and started a newspaper to tell the truth in Russia as opposed to the state run newspaper.
This all happened in December, a month after our election.
Since then Donald Trump has nominated Putin’s closest ally, the CEO of Exxon, to be the Secretary of State and all the top career people of the state department, people with decades of experience, who have served under presidents all the way back to Nixon were fired.
This weekend Donald Trump will call Putin and, according to him, he will tell Putin there is probably no reason for the sanctions President Obama put on the Russians for invading Crimea.
So what was the stolen intelligence and were we the foreign country it was leaked to?
Keep watching.

Posted by: johnhourihan | January 22, 2017

What is really important

This is what the current administration believes of the people who voted for them: “They were born, they grew up in the gutters, they went to work at twelve,a brief blossoming of beauty and sexual desire, they passed through a brief period of beauty and sexual desire, they married at twenty, they were middle-aged at thirty, they died for the most part at sixty. Heavy physical work, the care of home and children, petty quarrels with neighbors, films, football, beer and above all, gambling filled up the horizon of their minds. To keep them in control was not difficult. A few agents … moved always among them, spreading false rumors and marking down and eliminating the few individuals who were judged capable of becoming dangerous;All that was required of them was a primitive patriotism which could be appealed to whenever it was necessary to make them accept longer working hours or shorter rations.”
Well, I have to go now. I have to open up a beer, check my lottery tickets, stand up for the national anthem, accept that Trump is my leader and watch the Patriots kick Pittsburg’s ass. That is what is really important.

Posted by: johnhourihan | January 14, 2017

You can’t make me buy insurance!

Those of you who believe you have an answer to getting rid of the ACA by saying you don’t believe the government has the right to force people to buy insurance I have to point out the government makes us do lots of things. Governments make us pay taxes to support wars and corporate welfare we don’t agree with, it makes us buy a licenses to fish, hunt or to drive a car. Governments make us get a permit to put in a driveway, forces all men to sign up for the draft even though there isn’t one. Governments force us to pay property taxes even though we have no one in public schools, forces us to drive on the right side of the road, forces young people to go to school until they are 16. There are more. Governments have been forcing us to do things for a long time. Most of it is good. This “I don’t think anyone should be forced by the government to do anything,” is nonsense. Stop saying it. You sound foolish.

Posted by: johnhourihan | January 9, 2017

Why not a new election?

Does anyone truly feel that the leaked emails, hacked by Russia and disseminated by wikileaks, had nothing to do with the outcome of the election? Has everyone forgotten the drop from a Clinton double-digit lead to tied when the emails were released, and how her couple point lead turned into a lead for Trump when the FBI director said the emails would be investigated only a few days before the election? Russian spies hacked DNC, disseminated the contents and probably some additional false documents, through an organization run by a convicted pedophile who is on the run currently and what they made public just before the election put a Russian operative in power in our country, so why is it when we say, This election cannot stand if we are to remain the United States of America, people say that can’t happen?

Posted by: johnhourihan | January 4, 2017

Resolutions at 70

I haven’t spent a lot of time on New Year’s resolutions in the past, but this year I am 70. I am the age where 30 year olds believe we have gone around the bend when we warn them about the roads they are on. I figure I have fifteen or twenty years left, so this year I do have a few resolutions. I will spend more time with my wife enjoying whatever we can enjoy. She is a special woman and I am lucky to have her. I will stay in touch with my grandchildren whenever their parents allow it to be possible. I have decided that I will no longer be a part of any organized religion until all the hungry children in the world are fed. It seems with the money in the churches, mosques, temples and other castles of high piety this should have been possible years ago. I will be proud of my two children, talk about them a lot and visit them when I can. I will pay more attention to my brothers and sisters, the only people who truly know my life first hand. I will sweep from my life all those who have not done a good thing, no matter how small, for me or my wife in the past ten years. After my life and everything I have lived through, I don’t like being talked down to by anyone especially children, so if you feel it is your position to “put me in my place,” to talk down to me because I am old, don’t talk at all. I won’t be listening.
This year, 2017, I am 70, but before you talk to or about this doddering old man please remember I was 10 years old and poor, I was a fast driving, girl chasing street kid at 16, I was a 20 year old fighting a war and trying ot keep my friends off drugs, I was a 30 year old Irish Catholic raising a family in a WASP town were I graduated from high school, I was a teacher, a journalist, a coach and a 50 year old divorcee, I was a 60 year old benefactor to all those who needed help and who now don’t quite remember that decade, and now I am 70. If all you see is an old man, you are a fool. My most important new year’s resolution is to remind you all that anything you do now, we old people did first and did it better. You should be listening to our advice. There is only one thing young people today have done that we never did.
We never elected an idiot to be president. You did.

Posted by: johnhourihan | January 2, 2017

being a human is more important than the economy

I cringe every time I hear a loved one say, “The bottom line is the economy.” After seven decades of life, I know this to be untrue. The bottom line is how we treat each other regardless of money. It always has been, always will be, so I cringe when a loved one says it is OK that our president makes fun of disabled people, red lined his buildings to prevent minorities from getting homes, evacuated disabled vets from his buildings because he didn’t like how they looked, wants to discriminate against anyone who is not Christian, wants to quiet the media, wants to treat those who speak against him as “enemies” of the state, as long as he makes us more money. Humanity is the bottom line, not the economy.

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