Friday, February 11, 2011


No matter what race, creed, culture, nationality, religion, or socioeconomic background, MAN YEARNS TO BE FREE. This innate desire to be free, has given birth to movements, given birth to companies, given birth to nations, and has revolutionized generations. An innate desire to be FREE to live, FREE to love, FREE to laugh, FREE to learn, and FREE to earn lies at the core of mankind. Out of this yearning to be FREE , the people of Egypt spoke, shouted, organized, marched, protested, Facebooked, Tweeted, and texted again and again and again until a regime was toppled and the 30 year reign of Hosni Mubarak was ended amidst this PEACEFUL REVOLUTION.

What will eventually become of Egypt, the Arab World's largest nation, following the Egyptian Revolution of 2011, only time will tell. The challenges are enormous, the economy is in shambles, the people are poor, their patience is thin, and there is a long road ahead. However, what we witnessed over the 18 days that was the PEACEFUL Egyptian Revolution is something to be admired by all mankind. An intense desire of the people to live out their lives in accordance with their inalienable God-given rights, ignited a Revolution that was not to be denied. Despite the harsh opposition they faced, despite the government's brutal attempts to silence them, despite the days of hunger, days without shelter, days sleeping on the streets, and all other obstacles, they persevered until their mission was accomplished.

"Give us FREE !! Give us FREE !! Give us FREE !! ", cried the African slave Joseph Cinque in the 1997 movie "Amistad" portraying the 1839 revolt aboard the slave ship by the same name en-route to the United States to auction off the FREEDOM  of African men and women. This memorable line is often quoted and repeated because it symbolizes a sentiment felt by many who yearn to be free from SOMETHING or SOMEONE. Cinque did not have to be well versed in the English language to be able to communicate to others that FREEDOM is what he and his people desired and deserved because enslavement is an unnatural state that NO ONE wants to be a part of.  We all have a desire to be FREE. To be FREE from whatever physical, psychological, and oppressive forces that bind us. Such was the cry of African slaves in past centuries , such is the cry of the Egyptian people today, and such is the cry of all mankind ...  GIVE US FREE !!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Global Warming 101

Stop me if you've heard this before from those who are in denial that the phenomenon that has come to be known as Global Warming is real. "Ha Ha Ha !! There'r blizzards and ice storms everywhere !! And these idiots believe in global warming !! Ha Ha Ha !! Pass me that bottle of Jack Daniels ...". Yeah, I've heard this sentiment a lot from those who either refuse to look at scientific facts reflecting GLOBAL climate patterns of increasing temperatures in the earth's atmosphere or are unaware that these facts exist. They'd rather deal in the anecdotal, which quite frankly is easier to understand, and just focus on the fact that "it's ass freezing cold on my block, so there couldn't POSSIBLY be Global Warming".

So why are we seeing somewhat unusual weather patterns this winter with fierce snow and ice storms all across the Northern and Midwestern regions of the United States  ? Well, if you'll move all those dead brain cells you've gathered over the years to the side and think back to 6th Grade Science class, it will all make sense. The warming of a surface, in this case the earth's atmosphere, causes moisture to rise causing mass precipitation in the air. With the global increase in temperature of the earth's surface, there is an abundance of rising moisture leading to excessive precipitation in the atmosphere. Subsequently, what naturally occurs is an abundance of rain, sleet, snow and the miserable conditions many are experiencing this winter.

With the anecdotal seemingly in contrast with the scientific, there are harsh disagreements about whether or not this phenomenon is real and if so what to do about it. Like many things in this country, it seems to come down to POLITICS & POLITRIX !! Painting with a big ole broad brush, those on the left seem to believe in the climate science and those on the right seem to be in denial about it. Lefties, largely speaking, believe that the behavior and habits of mankind are largely responsible for this "inconvenient truth" about climate change and the government should play a role in curbing our bad behavior. Righties, generally speaking, either disbelieve the science completely or agree to the science but believe that this is a naturally occurring climate pattern and has nothing to do with the behavior of mankind therefore ... "KEEP THE GOVERNMENT OUT OF IT and ... (wait for it) ... LEAVE MY TAXES ALONE !! 

There are certainly intelligent substantive discussions that we can have about what is the best way that we as a society can and should do to protect our environment and not screw it up for future generations. Is this the job of the government ? is it the job of the business community ? is it up to local communities ? is it just a matter of to each his own and personal responsibility ? or should we do nothing at all because it is beyond our control ? These are all worthwhile discussions to have once we can all open our minds a little bit and realize that what we're seeing in the climate patterns from Antarctica to the Americas isn't the norm. There is no "LIE" in scientific facts and we must AT LEAST come to the table with that basic understanding. Now, equipped with that understanding, the larger question is, WHAT DO WE DO ABOUT IT ?? This, unfortunately, is where we typically run to our individual political corners, and block out our sense of reasoning. After all, Al Gore did a movie about it ... so there couldn't POSSIBLY be any truth to it !! Right ? These attitudes must change !!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Tweet of The Day - Friday, January 28, 2011

In reference to comedian Tracy Morgan crashing the "Inside the NBA" set on TNT set with Kenny Smith and Charles Barkley and SHOCKING THE NATION by saying ... and I quote .... "Sarah Palin is great masturbation material" (his words, not mine, don't sue me) comedian Andy Borowitz, followed up with this GEM of a Tweet ...

Andy Borowitz
I would have been more offended if Tracy Morgan said Sarah Palin was great presidential material.

I couldn't agree more !! Many have a fascination with Sarah Palin and a lot of that is directly attributable to her good "MILFY" looks. That's all good . Go ahead and have your "squatting in a deer-stand" fantasies about Mrs. Palin. However, what is HIGHLY OFFENSIVE is the notion that this dim bulb has the qualifications to be the President of the most powerful nation in the world with such recent intelligent takes as "the Russian focus on Sputnik and their space program is what eventually toppled the Soviet Union". Huh ? How do you pillow talk with THAT ??

There are some really funny, thought-provoking, and downright HILARIOUS people lurking around in the Twitter-verse. The #TweetOfTheDay is dedicated to those tweeps that either made me laugh or stop and think.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

"What has Obama ACTUALLY done so far ?" My Response to a FaceBook friend

The following is my Response to a FaceBook Friend asking "what has Obama actually done so far and would I actually vote for him again"

A little perspective is important in evaluating what has and has not been accomplished in the 2 years since Obama has been President. 
In regard to the economy, it is very relevant to realize that the state of the economy at the time he took office in January of 2009 was THE WORST since The Great Depression by all  statistical measures. Millions of jobs were been shed every month, the value of the stock market was LITERALLY half of what it is today (which affects people's 401Ks, pension plans, savings, etc.), record home foreclosures, credit markets frozen meaning banks would loan to NO ONE (i.e. small businesses, credit unions, etc.), and several other indicators of pending economic Armageddon. That type of economic situation will not turn around in a short amount of time NO MATTER WHO was President. Now, with that said all the moves made by the economic team not only LITERALLY prevented a 2nd Great Depression but the economy is now growing again by ALL MEASURES of economic progress. The bailouts of banks and of GM, like it or not, prevented a very bad situation from getting A WHOLE LOT WORSE. If we ran into a situation where Bank of America, Chase, General Motors, all went bankrupt (very real possibilities at the time) then we'd be pretty much looking at hell on earth in this U.S. of A. I supported the bailouts originally proposed by the Bush Administration cause I understood the consequences of doing nothing and in retrospect I am STILL convinced it was the right thing to do.
Now, regarding the deficit, don't believe the hype that Obama quadrupled the deficit in 2 years. First off, the Bush administration did some tricky financial math that left the Afghanistan and Iraq Wars along with a $600 billion Prescription Drug  Bill OFF THE BUDGET so when Barack and his team got in there and put these expenses RIGHTFULLY on the budget, that alone put the deficit at record levels. So that's before 1 bill was passed and any action taken by Obama, that by correcting the deceptive bookkeeping of the past administration that a TRUE PICTURE of the deficit was given. Now what has since been added to the deficit are additional bailouts and the Economic Stimulus package. You can question whether these were necessary or not although it is FACTUAL that the bailout of GM not only worked but it LITERALLY saved the US Auto Industry and the ripple effect throughout the economy that would've taken place had nothing been done. The Stimulus package both created and save close to 2 million jobs and saved many states from being damn near bankrupt because of their budget shortfalls which would've forced them to layoff policemen, firefighters, teachers, etc. Imagine the HELL if that took place ? Yes this added to the deficit but the way I view this is that if a storm came and blew the roof off my house and I was flat broke I would have 2 options. I could either sit there and make a bad situation worse and allow the rain to continue and destroy all my property or I could get a credit card (i.e. add to my household deficit) and pay for someone to come replace my roof and prevent a worsening situation. This is precisely what the Obama administration did. They could have done NOTHING and not borrowed any money to address some immediate concerns and allow things to get worse or they could've "put it on the card" for the sake of the economy. Yes this added to the deficit but HELL YES it was necessary.
Now, regarding Healthcare, keep in mind that Democratic Presidents dating back to JFK have been trying to pass SOMETHING to improve the troubling state of healthcare in this country. Amidst FIERCE opposition from the Republicans who want NOTHING done on Healthcare and hence why their administrations NEVER EVEN ATTEMPT to do anything to fix the nation's healthcare crisis, Obama and the Democratic Congress GOT IT DONE !! Is it perfect ? HELL NO !! Is there more to be done ? HELL YES !! BUT it's a good first step and one that many have tried and just as many have failed. That's HISTORIC in and of itself.
Now I certainly DO NOT agree with Obama on everything he does (i.e. it's time to get THE HELL out of Afghanistan AND Iraq) and I got no problem criticizing and calling him out when need be but in regard to the question "what has he actually done" I hope this LONG ASS ESSAY answers that question. If not, check out this website which does a simpler job of addressing that question. ->

Tweet of The Day - Wednesday, January 26, 2011


Chris Williams
@ Michele Bachmann is like Sarah Palin the free-trial version wiith ads and pop ups.

The humor and irony in this tweet lies in the fact that it is just so blatantly true. Think about all that you hate or love about Sarah Palin and Michelle Bachmann is only half of that, in essence, the FREE VERSION. She's "half as pretty", "half as popular", "half as young :-)", "half as annoying" but not even I would diss her by saying she's "half as bright". They might be equal peers on that front. So in conclusion, Michele Bachmann is "half of the half-governor". Guess that makes her the "Quarter Governor" ?

There are some really funny, thought-provoking, and downright HILARIOUS people lurking around in the Twitter-verse. The #TweetOfTheDay is dedicated to those tweeps that either made me laugh or stop and think.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Words DO Matter

"Sticks and stones may break my bones" ... but you you know what ? SO DO WORDS !! Whoever came up with the oft repeated phrase that we've all known since childhood that , "sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me" is a boldfaced liar and is SEVERELY underestimating the power of the SPOKEN WORD. Powerful words often induce powerful actions, for better or for worse. Our words have meaning and the ears upon which those words fall often serve as a starting point from which actions follow ... again, for better or for worse.

In the aftermath of this past weekend's mass shooting in Arizona that presently has Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords battling for her life and took the lives of 6 other innocent victims, a lot of discussion has taken place attributing much blame to the toxic political environment and discourse which now serve as a pillar of our national dialogue.To what degree the harsh tone of political debate ranging from the halls of Congress to the airwaves of talk radio had on this specific incident, we presently can draw no conclusions. All we know at this point is that a lone deranged individual with obvious mental health issues was able to purchase a gun legally and further took it upon himself to target and plot an assassination attempt on a sitting member of Congress leaving 6 dead and well over a dozen critically wounded.

As is often the case when such incidents take place, individuals of one political ideology or the other seek to place blame on the opposition and vindicate themselves of any responsibility. Until further evidence is gathered in the case of the deranged murderer Jared Lee Loughner, we can safely avoid making a DIRECT connection between his actions and whatever political beliefs he ascribes to. However, I make no political point and stand on no partisan ground when I say that RESPONSIBLE party leaders, Talk Radio Hosts, TV Analysts, prominent Bloggers and ALL who direct and heavily influence our national dialogue and debate, should take extreme caution and speak RESPONSIBLY in the tone and context of their speech.

Our leaders must realize that the words they speak and the images they portray are extremely powerful and fall on the serious and delirious alike. The resulting echo chamber of this harsh rhetoric creates a toxic environment in which the most extreme, the most boorish, the most reprehensible, and the most irresponsible speech and behavior is viewed as permissible. When serious influential political leaders utter statements such as "be armed and dangerous", "seeking 2nd amendment (the right to bare arms) remedies to political problems", "if ballots don't work, bullets will", and other such obviously threatening and irresponsible  statements, CREDIBLE political leaders have a RESPONSIBILITY TO SPEAK UP and denounce such rhetoric and correctly place such people on the fringe of society. OUR WORDS DO MATTER ... for better or for worse.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

What the HUCK ??

In an upcoming edition of the Mark Twain classic novel "Huckleberry Finn" , publishers have decided to censor the use of "the N-Word" (not "nice", "nylon", "neighbor", or "nightfall" ) and replace it with the word "slave". Publishers say that this is not an attempt to "censor" a classic novel or to inject a dose of the "S-word" (steroids) into the notion of "Political Correctness". Rather, they claim that this is just their way of updating the novel to represent our 21st century world (apparently they don't have the latest Lil Wayne CD) .

Though I can certainly appreciate a publisher not wanting to offend the modern day reader by spewing "N-Words" all over the 293 pages of this classic novel, the truth is that in a novel that represents tales from the mid-1800s in American society, there was A WHOLE LOT that was offensive at that moment in American History. This was a time when owning "your very own priceless black slave" was probably about as common place as owning a house with a 2-car garage is today. In those days, referring to a black man or woman with the use of "the N-Word" was very likely the least of their concerns in comparison to the numerous beatings and inhumane treatment that they endured for hundreds of years.

There is a WHOLE LOT about American History that we may not like, but "it is what it was (and in many ways still is)". To attempt to sweep these ugly aspects of American history under the rug in an attempt to be "politically correct" is to deny a modern generation a brief look into the past from which we have evolved and fails to give them a deeper appreciation and understanding of the prism through which we view race and society today.