Tag Archives: musings

Who Am I?!

27 May

This month I have to renew my New Jersey Driver’s License. 4 years ago, for the first time in my life (I’m 61) I needed to show 6 points of identification to prove my identity (which includes Birth Certificate, Social Security card, Voter Registration card, Utility Bills, Tax bills and my old Drivers License) and then have my picture taken so there would be no mistake that from that point on I was who I said I was. This was all done in 2011 as part of all of the states compliance with Homeland Security rules and regulations.

Here is the copy as it appears on the Homeland Security News Wire explaining just how sophisticated the new NJ driver’s licenses are.

In compliance with Secure ID, the federal law that mandates that states create more stringent identification cards, New Jersey has unveiled a sophisticated new driver’s license; according to New Jersey officials, the new Enhanced Digital Driver’s License puts New Jersey among the ten states with the most secure identity cards; to prevent counterfeiting, security features include an embedded pattern on the license, one and two dimensional bar codes, and “purposeful errors” like misspellings; to implement these new licenses, the state’s MVCs have had to undergo a $19 million upgrade to install new computer systems, hardware, and software.

Notice how NJ had to spend 19 million dollars to upgrade their software etc. But the new licenses had photos and embeds and bar codes to make them super secure and fraud preventive. So whenever I go to purchase my Claritin-D  all the pharmacist has to do is look at my face and compare it to the face on my license, then scan the back of my license which inputs everything there is to know about me into their pharmacy computers where then even the Federal government will be notified and able to track my pseudoephedrine purchases to make sure I’m just into allergies and not into crystal meth!

Anyway, my license is now expiring and I have to have it renewed…in person…at the NJ Motor vehicles office…And I have to bring my 6 points of ID with me, just like I did in 2012…to prove who I am!…Again!

Why can’t they just look at my face and then look at my Super Secure Homeland Security Specific NJ drivers license… with my face on it, and then scan the super secure embedded bar code on the back and say “Hey it’s You! Congratulations! Go home and have a nice day!”

Why do I have to go through the entire 6 point, prove who I am, like nobody but me knows, like you can’t see the face I’m wearing, that matches the drivers license I have, that I couldn’t have gotten, unless I had proven who I was, 4 years ago, so I could get the license that I’m holding in my hand now!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Apparently My NJ Drivers License proves who I am to everyone except the NJ Motor Vehicles Department! And they gave it to me in the first place when I proved to them who I was! These guys are worse than my bankers. Who also pretend to NOT know who I am whenever I go there to get some of my own money, that I could only put there by proving who I was!

So off I go tomorrow to hopefully once again prove who I am to bureaucrats with a short term memory offering the promise of a long term ID card that they can’t ever make good on.

I’ve got IDs up the wazoo and still nobody knows the me I really am! Do I? Does anyone?

All I can say is… Thanks a lot Alzheimer bin-Laden!

 

We Ain’t Seen Nothin’ Yet!?

25 May

This past Sunday morning on Fox News Donald Trump declared “I don’t want to have guns in classrooms, although in some cases teachers should have guns in classrooms, frankly.”

Therefore: If guns aren’t allowed in classrooms

But: Teachers should have guns in classrooms

Then: Teachers should not be allowed in classrooms.

Just like the “Newspeak” of George Orwell’s 1984… Welcome to Trump-Speak 2016… where all that is spoken can be interpreted to mean all things to all people. Is he for it or against it? Yes! Of course he is!

And how about hoisting life size posters of the new first lady Melania at the entrances to all public school buildings to let would be attackers know that they should beware what awaits them inside, and to let all school children know that “Big Mother” will be protecting them?

And these are real photos…albeit taken 15 years ago but still… Not even George Orwell, nor “The Fonz” while jumping that shark, …could see this coming!

<p>If the Donald makes it into office, he won’t need to bother with hiring secret service: he’s already married to a lingerie-clad “Terminator.” <i>(Photo: British GQ)</i></p>

Hazards To Ourselves!?

21 May

Here is a little known factoid, at least I think it is little known, since I was not aware of it until just this week nor had I heard anyone speak of it before…Did you know that in the United States more than twice as many people commit suicide than are murdered by someone else? That is, we kill ourselves more than we kill each other…

In fact, world wide,  suicide takes more lives than murder and war put together! And those statistics come from the World Health Organization. The WHO reports that the death toll from suicide – at almost one million people per year – accounts for half of all violent deaths worldwide. And the toll is rising with 1.5 million yearly fatalities from suicide predicted by the year 2020.

And yet the newspapers and telecasts are filled each and every day with stories of murder, terror and war, cancer, disease and traffic accidents and yet an estimated 10 to 20 million people attempt suicide each year! And they are almost never mentioned, reported nor talked about publicly.

Even the Pentagon has recently released statistics revealing that while war (as everyone would expect) was the leading cause of death in the military nearly every year between 2004 and 2011, suicides became the top means of dying for our troops in 2012 and 2013! Our soldiers are now killing themselves more than our enemies do!

The WHO reports that the highest suicide rates are in Eastern Europe, and the lowest in Latin America, Muslim countries and some Asian nations. Suicide rates also tend to increase with age but for some reason and worldwide, there has been a recent increase in suicidal behaviors among young people aged 15 to 25. Men are more successful at committing suicide than are women… except in rural China and  parts of India.

And The most common methods for committing suicide? Swallowing pesticides, using firearms and overdosing on painkillers. But did you know any of this? I did not and for whatever reasons just about everyone avoids the subject,  suicides are hardly ever reported, and not many seem to think that it is a problem worth discussing or trying to solve.

And yet we stock pile guns to keep ourselves safe, worry about who’s walking through our neighborhoods, demand an ever larger military to protect us from the world and stand on lines for hours to make sure our planes and trains have not been infiltrated by madmen (and women) who actually kill very few of us.

And despite all of our fears of “them” and “those people” and that disease and the next natural disaster…what we should really be most afraid and cautious of is… what we might do to ourselves… For in truth, The statistics show us in overwhelming numbers that here in the 21st century, the greatest danger to my health…is most likely going to be…me!

 

Welcome to 1984!

18 May

I think that President Obama has done a good job as President of the United States. I know that not everyone agrees with me and even though I don’t agree with everything that President O. has done, our 44th elected President is about to do something that no other president in the history of the United States has ever accomplished.

He is about to become the only president who has been at war during all 8 years of his presidency! And when you consider that President G.W. Bush had the nation at war for the last 6 years of his presidency then the United States has been at war for the past 14 years, non stop…with no stopping in sight.

Hillary Clinton, should she become our next president, is well known in Washington for being a “war hawk” herself… and Donald trump, should he become our next Commander in Chief, has vowed to “Bomb the shit out of them!” Whoever “they” may be…but does that matter anymore? Who they are?

Does anyone know why we fight everywhere and for always these days? We’ve been at war now 7 times as long as we were involved in WWI and almost 4 times as long as we were involved in WWII. And Vietnam, our longest war, was a matinee short compared to our current involvements in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Even President Lincoln was able to bring about the conclusion of our very own Civil War in one third of the time that it has taken for our present day armed forces to secure the fighting “Over There”against nations that don’t even have governments, let alone, armies.

So why do we fight so long and so hard and at such great expense to our nation and our citizens? We are currently over 19 trillion dollars in debt and a 2011 Brown University study concluded that the cost of war since 2001 will reach 5 trillion dollars, or $16,000 per American; $64,000 for a family of four…by 2020. And that was a 2011, Pre-ISIS, estimate!

If you are voting this year for a political party or person who you think will reduce our national debt…good luck with that! Unless you are hoping that our government will trade Social Security and Medicare spending for a reduction in the debt, it will just never happen. And even then the ever increasing costs of our never ending wars will simply chew up that savings and add more debt to our society anyway.

And then what would we be left with… but war, debt and absolutely no societal programs for our society that we have been fighting to protect? What does it avail a nation to spend a fortune and lose it’s soul?

But now, at 19 trillion dollars in debt and rising by the minute, how will we, without war, keep the peace… and the economy? Our dollars now remain strong because we back them up not with gold (we ran out of that in the 1970s) but with guns instead.

In 1960 President Eisenhower admonished us to “beware the military-industrial complex”, and we apparently have not, for it seems to me that war has now become peace in the minds of many if not most Americans. So shall our ignorance become our strength too?

 

 

 

 

He-Man Woman Haters Club: 2016

4 May

 

It looks as though Donald Trump has secured the Republican nomination for President of the United States and with that he is purported to be bringing bold new ideas to a campaign that promises to make America great again!

He’ll also be dragging along behind him a host of Republican sycophants like New Jersey’s great big Governor, Chris Christie. “Biggie C”, as we like to call him here in NJ, is perhaps the rudest, meanest talking, bully to ever have inhabited our state house. And he loves to wag his finger in the faces teachers, public servants and just about everyone else, especially women, whenever he gets the chance.

Mr. Trump, is best known for his love of firing people, especially his wives, as soon as his need for them wanes. Together he and “Biggie C” could make the most belligerent team to ever  set foot in the White House. They certainly would be the most misogynist duo ever to be leading the free world.

And that’s if Mr. Trump decides to tap Mr. Christie as his VP. But just imagine if he has promised the 9th Supreme Court Justice seat to the Big man with the Big mouth who hates all those who oppose his judgements? What kind of a He-Man Woman Haters club might America become then?

It seems to me that if you are a woman who lives in the USA, then a vote for these 2 He-men/Cavemen would be 1 gigantic vote against yourself and all women throughout the free world…but that’s just my opinion…

I would love to read your opinions in the comment section below.

 

The Grass Is Always Greener Just Before…

30 Apr

According to a recent NASA study, thanks to higher amounts of carbon dioxide on our planet, the earth is getting greener as a result of a phenomenon called “CO2 fertilization.” The boost in growth and greenery happens because the increase in CO2 gas causes more sugar to be produced by plants.

This has fueled a greening of our planet in areas that were once icebound, barren or sandy and the report says that an area about twice the size of the continental United States is now green when only a few decades ago it wasn’t. The report concluded that about 70 percent of the Earth’s new greening could be attributed to atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations

Unfortunately, the report also tells us that this effect while pretty to behold, is only temporary. Eventually rising CO2 levels, should they continue to rise in the Earth’s atmosphere as they have been doing for over 100 years, will lead to the continued melting of glaciers, rising sea levels and more dangerous weather.

The photo above is of the planet Venus, named for the most beautiful of the ancient gods because it shone the brightest of the five planets known to ancient astronomers. Venus, sometimes called Earth’s sister planet because it is so similar in size, mass, density, composition, and gravity to Earth, is however surrounded by an atmosphere that is mostly Carbon Dioxide.

Planetary scientists believe that Venus once had an atmosphere similar to Earth’s. Now on Venus it’s a toasty 880 degrees at the beach. That’s if Venus had one. But not to worry because we’re not as close to the sun as Venus is and our CO2 levels have a long way to go before they reach the levels found on the “Morning Star”.

And besides, our beaches will all be under water way before it gets that hot here…but that’s only if you believe in such things. In any event we can all enjoy the greener greenery while it’s here… I suppose.

 

Happy Belated B-Earth Day

24 Apr

Happy Birthday once again to Mother Earth! Even though Earth Day is not Earth’s official birthday perhaps this would be a good time to celebrate it anyway. After all the earth is now 6,060 years old…give or take, and deserves a birthday celebration…don’t you think?

I only mention the Earth’s young age because according to Gallup surveys  30% of Americans say the Bible is the actual word of God and should be interpreted literally, including 54% of those who attend church weekly and 46% of those with a High School education or less. And 60% of all Americans believe that evolution has has little or nothing to do with the development of the human species.

So according to the Bible, and those who study it carefully, and literally, the Earth and all of it’s carefully designed creatures have been around for only a little over 6,000 years. So actually Earth Day would be the celebration or birthday of everything Earth related…including us.

But since the earth was set awash during the Great Flood of Noah’s time perhaps we should be celebrating the Re-Birth of Earth which literal Biblical scholars put at around 4,200 years ago. So happy Grand Re-Opening Mother earth!

And while we’re at it we should get ready to celebrate Mother’s day and the four mothers who gave birth to us all…Bible speaking, of course. Because after the Great Flood and the landing of Noah’s Ark there were only 4 mothers left alive on Earth. And they would be…

  • Emzara…The wife of Noah
  • Sedeqetelebab…The wife of Shem
  • Ne’elatama’uk…The wife of Ham
  • Adataneses…The wife of Japheth

Names you don’t often hear anymore and names never even mentioned in the bible! Imagine that: The 4 mothers of all Earthlings and not even a mention in the Bible? Go figure. We have since learned their names from other ancient texts, like the Book of Jubilees but isn’t it odd that Noah, Shem, Ham and Japheth get all of the credit for inseminating the women but the women get nary a mention for having carried and given  birth to all of our Earthly ancestors. That’s like saying you watched Gilligan’s Island because of Gilligan and the Skipper and not Mary Ann and Ginger.

And what a job that must have been, nurturing and caring for all of Earth’s forefathers… and fore-mothers. You’d think that with all of the Americans who faithfully believe in the bible and who faithfully disbelieve in evolution there would be more respect and recognition paid to the mothers…I guess they figure that if God didn’t bother to mention them in the Bible, then how important could they be?

Oh well, life is funny that way I guess.

Anyway,  Just thought I’d give another shout out to the planet Earth. Happy Birthday and many more! Because, No matter how old you are, you’re all we’ve got. I’m sure you’ll be letting us know in the future if you need anything. And I sure hope we’ll be listening!

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