Friday, April 24, 2009

Dear Abby

Back in 1960 my sister got hooked up with a man we despise. They were married - much to the chagrin of my family - and have remained married even though my father and all of my previous eight stepfathers have tried to make their lives a living hell in hopes that he would just go away.

This man has been a thorn in our family’s side for all over 50 years and we have been prohibited from visiting or having any contact with my sister at her home.

My mom has recently remarried and my new stepfather wants to try a different approach. He now tells us that my siblings and I can go visit her, even though the louse is still there. He even went so far as to travel to see my other sister who also married a bum (he even sent us a picture of the two of them smiling and shaking hands). This guy scares me!

So here is my problem; I see this new found acceptance of their marriage as a sign of weakness and I am worried that other despicable men will try to marry my other sisters or possibly come and do harm to my mom because they see him as soft. I see my new stepfather’s behavior as appeasement, however, my liberal bleeding heart brother keeps telling me that a sure sign of insanity is to keep doing something over and over expecting a different result.

Is my new stepfather a weak appeaser or is my brother right, that it is time for a different approach?


Numquam Cede!!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

The Hypocrisy of Moralists

Dr. Laura has been all over the airwaves promoting her new book “In Praise of Stay-at-home Moms.” I caught part of an interview with on a radio station while traveling and cannot recall the station or host. She made the comment “men have been emasculated by feminism and no longer feel an obligation to take care of the woman.”

Really? Feminism emasculated me? Apparently - as I would soon be told – it was because feminism took woman out of their designated place as wife, mother, and homemaker. I always thought it was responsible for opening up the door so that woman could pursue any path they wanted to. You mean like be a radio talk show host, or pursuing a PhD and a certificate in Marriage Counseling? Surely you don’t mean opening the door so that woman could have the ability to have a career?

Apparently, according to the Doctor, this is not an acceptable path for woman. And we men, shame on us, have lost our way in protecting and providing for these lil’ delicate flowers. Oh really? When someone rails against the same lifestyle they have benefited from and still enjoys, we would call that being a hypocrite. Not so! says our good Doctor…….

"A hypocrite says, 'Do what I say, not what I do,' rather than, 'Do what I say, not what I did'. Note 1

How in the world does someone find the gall to write a book called “How Could You Do That?! The Abdication of Character, Courage, and Conscience” when they have lived the vary life they are writing about as bad for others? Yes, people make mistakes, some learn from them, admit them, and move on. Other people, like our good Doctor, have made numerous mistakes over time, denied them, and then self-anointed themselves as righteous and virtuous purveyors of all that is good and bad in society.

Where is her candor, her admission of a less than stellar lifestyle – both past and present? Where is her embarrassment for the stupid mistakes she partook in as an educated older adult? Case in point:
  • She was married and divorced….How could you do that?!
  • When she was 28 she and had a sexual relationship with a man 29 years older than her…..How could you do that?!
  • She allowed him to take nude pictures of her……How could you do that?!
  • She had an affair with a married man who had dependent children…..How could you do that?!
  • She lived with the man for eight years before getting married…...How could you do that?!
  • She bore a child, out of wedlock, at the age of 38…..How could you do that?!
  • And then, as an observant Jew – orthodox, no less - with new found moral authority, lied when she denied that those same nude photos were really her. How could you do that?!
It is not how could she have done those things, it is how she did them and still finds herself qualified to write books on morality? Had she called it “How could I have done that?!” I would not be writing this about her. Leonard Pitts summed this type of hypocrisy up pretty succinctly:

"There are few things more entertaining than the hypocrisy of moralists, caught living Married With Children lives while preaching Leave It to Beaver virtues."

Note 1: Dr. Laura. NPR interview (October 3, 1998)

Friday, April 17, 2009


Again with the listening to a lower dial FM christian radio station……

I can’t help myself, I just know they are going to say something stupid, wrong, or both. This time they had a “christian” lawyer on discussing the ACLU news conference on sexting (see Note 1).

Both the host and the lawyer were in agreement with the ACLU on their stand, believing that the incident was best left to the parents and not the courts. Yay! for the ACLU! But alas, it was short lived.

“….the hypocrisy of the ACLU is just astounding, how can they defend a teenagers right to have an abortion without a parent’s consent and then with this sexting case side with the parents?”

OK, I am not going to speak for the ACLU, I am not associated with the organization so I can’t claim to represent what they are all about. However, I am pretty sure that they will agree with me on this.

The ACLU does not care about the person who is their client or for whom they wish to represent. The person involved is irrelevant to why they take the case on. If we are going to be a Nation of laws, and that law is predicated on individual rights, then a violation of those rights is wrong regardless of how heinous, dastardly, despicable, or morally repugnant the issue or client may be.

This is why the ACLU will side with, and against, churches, parents, the government, and the majority. They offer the same defense of rights for the child-murdering rapist as they do for guys like Rush Limbaugh (see Note 2).

You may not like who they represent, but they really do have our best interests at stake, unless of course you no longer want to have a Bill of Rights you communist socialist swine!


Note 1: The event in question was referring to a “Columbus news conference, lawyers from the ACLU and Ohio State University said that no Ohioan has been convicted of a felony yet, but lives could be ruined if underage youths have to register as sex offenders for sharing nude or semi-nude photos or video. “

Note 2: Really? Rush Limbaugh? “….[the] Florida branch [of the ACLU] filed a "friend-of-court" motion on behalf of Limbaugh arguing state officials were wrong in seizing his medical records for their drug probe. "For many people, it may seem odd that the ACLU has come to the defense of Rush Limbaugh," said in a released statement. "But we have always said that the ACLU's real client is the Bill of Rights, and we will continue to safeguard the values of equality, fairness and privacy for everyone, regardless of race, economic status or political point of view," Howard Simon, ACLU of Florida Executive Director.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Gain is Gain

I was changing radio stations the other day when I caught part of a conversation deriding and bemoaning the new tax burden on those that make over $250k annually. What I found interesting was that this conversation was taking place on one of the so called “christian” radio stations that dot the lower end of the dial.

Now it’s not that Christians and/or their radio stations should not delve into secular areas such as money, its that they were poisoning the well with incorrect, or in this case, downright stupid information. A cynical person or one who sees a conspiracy around every corner might just come to the conclusion that these “christian” radio stations are nothing more than a mouthpiece for the neocon point of view on how our country should be run. I think that a lot of folks have gulped down the kool-aid and will believe anything as long as it is wrapped in “Christian” or “Conservative” labels no matter how ill-advised or wrong it is. As Forest Gump would say “stupid is as stupid does.”

Here is how the conversation went:

“…so what this new tax is going to do is stop people from wanting to earn more than $250K”

“you mean make sure you earn no more than $249K?”

“well I would recommend stopping at $240K because Congress could lower that amount in the near future.”

If your wealth is at a point where you would actually consider this as sound advice then you either came to your wealth by a) winning it or b) inheriting it.

There is usually a point where a new tax rate takes a bite out of the income earned over the tipping point amount, but that balances out quickly as more income is earned so that you soon have a positive gain. To recommend leaving $10,000 dollars on the table because of a new higher tax rate or to actually quit earning income when you reach $249K is nonsense. And you want me to take your advice on my salvation?

Yes taxes influence behavior, more than they should in my opinion, but it is a reality nonetheless that is not served well by stupid advice such as this. To stop accumulating wealth because you don’t want to pay more in taxes means you end up generating less wealth. Why would you want to do that? Taxes come and go, they are a fact of life that will never go away. You pay them until you can change them – you take the ups and downs and move forward. One should always focus on net gain not focus on what is lost or “could have been made if only ……”.

Gain is gain.