Monday, October 16, 2017

I Found It! I Found It!

Guess what? I finally found my life, such as it is, and it wasn't packed away in an old shoebox on the back closet shelf! No, all I had to do was sign off of Facebook for 6 weeks. Not only did I survive (the first week was the hardest), but also my mood improved—vastly!

It makes a difference to quit putting all that negativity and anger in one's mind. As the programmers of the olden days used to say, "GIGO—garbage in, garbage out."

Yes, I miss not having that 'instant' knowledge of what my friends and family are doing, but they have my email, and I have theirs. I'm confident that if anything important happens, we'll let each other know. I still sign onto FB, but not nearly as often as I used to.

I never did get used to tweeting, though I think I have an account. I used to have one, but haven't checked it out in months. Hmmm, maybe it's been years?

In discussing GIGO, it's also tied to some depressions. Several years ago, one of my girlfriends became terribly depressed and went to see her doctor for some happy pills. He talked to her, and suggested instead, an alternative treatment for a couple weeks and if that didn't work, then he'd write her a prescription. She agreed to try his idea. She turned off the news, and within a week, was back to her usual happy self. It wasn't that she actually watched it, and paid attention to it, but it was on all the time. All that sadness, anger, hurt of the world found its way into her head, and there was nothing she could do about it. If I find myself getting depressed, I turn off the news. It makes a difference.

Yes, my friends, there is life beyond FB, Twitter, and all the other social media platforms. A life that is truly worth living—and its precious gift of time; time to write, to bake, to laugh, to love. Honest. Trust me. (Would I lie to you?)

A friend just sent me a link to a fascinating article, Our minds can be hijacked: the tech insiders who fear a smartphone dystopia https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/oct/05/smartphone-addiction-silicon-valley-dystopia I've read lots of articles out there about the evils of modern technology, and most of the ones read were not as well thought out, or researched, as this one. Here's a quote: " A few years ago Marcellino, 33, left the Bay Area, and is now in the final stages of retraining to be a neurosurgeon. He stresses he is no expert on addiction, but says he has picked up enough in his medical training to know that technologies can affect the same neurological pathways as gambling and drug use. “These are the same circuits that make people seek out food, comfort, heat, sex,” he says."

A good article, and one I can't argue with. Never thought about it being "addictive" but just a "time sink."

Lenora

Boycott the NFL! Save Brains! Save Lives!

Donate to USVI and PR—check out Charity Navigator to see how your money will be spent. https://www.charitynavigator.org

Buy Almost Like Praying by Lin-Manuel Miranda. Do your part. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D1IBXE2G6zw



For those of you who are waiting for my response from SecDef Jim Mattis, well, so am I! I'm very surprised, and some disappointed, that I haven't had one by now. Oh, not from himself, but one of his minions. I really don't expect The Man to respond.

Monday, October 9, 2017

Monday Morning Quarterback with Questions

Yes, I admit it. I'm playing Monday morning QB, but by gum, I'm thoroughly disgruntled and aggravated!

Twitterdum is doing all he can to do get us into a nuclear war with North Korea, and the poor schmuck can't even take care of his own people! If his own people have no trust in him, and most of us don't, how can our allies??? Twitterdum needs an adult caretaker.

This is a letter I sent to SecDef Jim Mattis (whom I thought might be an adult, I am beginning to have doubts). It went out via snail mail on Maria Day 10. I should never have felt the need to write, let alone mail, such a letter. I would have sent it electronically, but couldn't find his electronic address. Yes, it went out with typos. Deal with it.

Dear Secretary Mattis,

I would like to know why the US Army did not immediately deploy to the US Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, and all US held and populated islands after Hurricane Maria. Why did they not go in and establish field hospitals? Why did they not go in and establish mess halls to feed those people? Why were they not there within 24 hours of Maria's passing? Why have they not set up temporary housing and temporary schools?

Why did the Seabees not go in and immediately begin to repair and rebuild needed infrastructure, even if only on a temporary basis beginning with cell towers, air strips, and roads?

Why were no distribution centers set up, via chopper, for MREs and fresh water? Why have we waited to long to care for our fellow countrypersons? Please, General Mattis, don't confirm my worst suspicion—this was not done because the dominant color is brown and the dominant language is Spanish.

Thank you for your time and response.

Lenora Rain-Lee Good
Veteran, WA8 617 788

*********************************************
HIS ANSWER, OR LACK THEREOF, WILL GO HERE.
Yes, I expect a response. Actually, I expected at least a telecon by now.
When my response comes, I'll let you know. Honest. Trust me.
*********************************************


And then, and then, on the news of Maria Day 12, I heard that the USN Comfort, a hospital ship, had just left port for Puerto Rico, a 4-day transit. Say what? Yes, it seems they had to 'man up' the ship with all the medical personnel required. I took a hand full of blood pressure meds to keep from exploding. (No, not really, but perhaps I should have!) No such accommodation heading to the Virgin Islands that I heard about.

Why weren't the personnel of the Comfort put on standby as soon as we knew Maria was going to clobber us? They should all have ready bags packed and in the front hall closet. Why were they not on board that ship BEFORE Maria hit, getting it ready to sail as soon as safe?

Why didn't the Army paratroop in field hospitals? Water? Food? Why weren't a minimum of 40,000 pairs of boots on the ground of both Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands within 24 hours?

Why didn't the Seabees land and get to work? Where the hell are those Can Do guys?? Where is the Corps of Engineers and their 'blue tarp brigade'???

Why did no one think to call an expert, such as LTG Russel Honoré, AUSA Ret., to find out what needed to be done, and or ask him to come out of retirement and take charge? All right, perhaps someone did. Perhaps they didn't like his answer so they ignored him? I dunno.

If FEMA can't deal with these kinds of disasters, and it appears they've been stretched way too thin to do so, then either militarize FEMA, or use the military, or both, until things on the ground are controlled to a point where FEMA can once again take over.

Why doesn't our Juvenile-in-Chief listen to what people say, and perhaps learn something? Is he really incapable of focusing on someone other than himself? A real president deals with people and lessons learned.

It has now been 3 weeks, and 88% of the people of Puerto Rico are without power. I have heard nothing about the USVI. They cannot charge their phones. Why weren't solar chargers sent and dropped? Less than 50% of the people have running, potable water. This is a humanitarian disaster. The death toll is considerably higher than the 36 shown on TV, for a number of reasons. Not the least of which is there is no power, no way to contact people who complete death certificates. There are known to be at least 95 people missing.

Will no one take away Twitterdum's twitter account? Can no one be an adult in his sphere of influence? Can no one hack it and censor him?

I hope Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz runs for President before I die. I would proudly vote for her!

 Now, do something to help, buy Lin-Manuel Miranda's song. Help. Contribute.
Almost Like Praying preview here:


Lenora Good


Monday, October 2, 2017

IT'S A MIRACLE!!!

Oh. My. God. Butter my butt and call me a biscuit! I finally agree with something Twitterdum said! This is proof of a miracle! A genuine bona fide miracle! Sainthood is in my future—or maybe his? Twitterdum finally entered his twitterverse last weekend calling for a boycott of the NFL. Now, he wants it boycotted because some of the players 'take a knee' during the national anthem to protest the racial inequality and treatment by the Police in the US (This is NOT about the National Anthem, it IS about racial inequality.) Well, I'm here to tell ya, I'd take a knee then, too, if I could be assured someone would help me back up!

Remember, all this twittering and tweeting by Twitterdum is nothing more than a diversion from his real problems—you know, starting a nuclear war, Russiagate, repeal and replace, a new, broader, and permanent travel ban, Puerto Rico. Remember, he is the Chickenhawk-in-Chief. Remember, Bob Mueller is working hard while Twitterdum is tweeting. Remember, your rights are being taken away while you're focused on the bling of Twitterdum's tweets.

But I do agree on boycotting the NFL—for health and safety concerns. Football used to be one of my favorite spectator sports. Loved it. There was a time when I knew all the rules, regulations, and a lot of the stats on the teams and players. I even remember watching George Blanda play. (Did I just date myself?) Yeah. Really. He was my hero. I was a gung-ho spectator.

Then I got busy raising kids and working for a living and let football sink into the recesses of my mind. (NOTE to ladies who don't watch football: when the games are playing, the grocery stores are empty.) Life happens. Honest. Trust me. And then Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) came to the fore. I don't like football anymore. Were my son still in school, I would not allow him to play football. Ever. (As it happened, he didn't play when he was in school, but for very different reasons.) Ninety-nine percent of all donated NFL player brains have tested positive for CTE (110 out of 111 brains examined), including Aaron Hernandez's, the young man convicted of murder and who later hanged himself in jail at the age of 27.

Yes, I know there are those who claim the research is faulty, the new helmets are safe, and the earth is now and shall forever remain flat, amen. The good news is, according to one article I read, that "Youth football participation is declining, and a number of college and NFL players have walked away from the game, citing concern over brain injuries." (emphasis mine).

Kids, as we know, are invincible. They are immortal. What—them worry they'll get a brain injury? Naw, never happen. They're tough; they'll be fine. Well, they aren't that tough and they won't be that fine. As I understand it, one concussion may be enough to start CTE. Multiple concussions are bad. Mammas, don't let your babies grow up to play football or soccer, instead encourage them to grow up to become brain surgeons, or CPAs, or even lawyers, and such. Let them be good (and alive) Daddies. Something useful. (Apologies to Waylon & Willie.)

Boycott the NFL. Save brains. Save lives.

Lenora Good

PS: I'm really proud of the current crop of players and owners who are standing in solidarity with their teammates in support against the injustice in this country to people of color, whether they remain in the locker room, or take a knee during the national anthem. Go Hawks!


PSII: Heard this on Tuesday last. Couldn't believe it, but it's true. Would I lie to you? "I wasn't preoccupied with the NFL, I was ashamed of what was taking place." This from the man who got 5, count them, 5 deferments so he wouldn't have to serve in the military. Oh, Puhleeze..... There is nothing disrespectful about sincerely taking a knee during the national anthem. Well, unless you're a draft dodger and want people to forget that little detail.

Monday, September 25, 2017

A Bit of Woo, Another Rant

As most of you know, I'm a Viet Nam (yes it used to be two words) era Veteran. As any of you who served in the 'Nam know, woo existed. The guys who were chosen as point on patrols were not chosen because they were cute, could hold their beer the best, or were hated by the Lieutenant. They were chosen because they had a sixth sense. They 'knew' where the trip wire was, the punji sticks were, where Charlie set up an ambush. Some of them got so they would get up in the morning and know who in their squad wouldn't live to go back to the World. It was a hard thing for those guys to live with. Whether you believe in the woo (woo-woo) or not, it existed, and probably still does. Talk to a Desert Storm or Afghan vet. And sometimes the broadcasted their sight half-way around the world.

On the night of 16 Dec 65, as a PFC, I attended the Christmas concert put on by the WAC Army Band at Ft McClellan, Alabama. Being a military band playing on a military base, they began with the Star Spangled Banner and of course, we all stood to attention. When they got to "...and the rocket's red glare..." for me, the stage and the band faded, and I was in 'Nam. I could smell it. I could taste it. And I saw a Green Beret Captain lead his squad into an ambush. I heard the gunfire, I heard men scream and moan as they died, I smelled the blood and death. When the Star Spangled Banner finished, the "vision" was gone, and I was back in the auditorium.

I know of two other women and one man in the audience who saw the same thing. One was LT Graham. She was the LT who taught us Military Customs and Courtesies in Basic Training and talked about the CPT to whom she was engaged. I don't know how I recognized him, but I did. After the program, I saw LT Graham in the lobby. By her color or lack thereof, I knew she had seen it. Lowly enlisted swine were not permitted to speak to officers, and as I tried to figure out what, if anything, to say, another LT came up, full of giggles and good cheer grabbed her by the arm and took off to the Officer's Club. LT Graham chose her 'cide that night, behind her quarters, alone with her Army issued .45.

Why am I telling you all this? Do you care that to this day I shake when I hear our national anthem? That I still have nightmares about that night? That I still have guilt no priest can ever absolve? No. I am telling you this because to quote William Tecumseh Sherman, "War is hell," and in my own pitiful way, I've been there, done that. And it was hell. As the old bumper sticker used to say, "War is not healthy for children and other living things."

Now we have a genuine bona fide Chickenhawk* behind the Big Desk in the oval office, with the nuclear codes close at hand. He's never been to war, he has no idea what he is talking about, and because NOW he won't have to go (he got 5 deferments for Viet Nam), he thinks war might be sorta fun, macho in a John Wayne sorta way. To hell with walking softly, just carry a big bully stick and beat the crap out of anyone who doesn't play by his rules. He's watched too many John Wayne movies. According to Jon Meacham in the October 2017 Vanity Fair, P45 doesn't read books—he's "Too Busy To Bother..."—he reads, "...passages. I read areas. I'll read chapters." I wonder if he reads Cliff Notes. And he's talking about utterly destroying another nation? He has no idea--nor do I think he cares--that he is talking about killing men, women, and children; people who are not only starving, they are already terrified of us.

Twitterdum, aka P45, has never read Sunzi's The Art of War. If he had, he would know Sunzi admonishes the General to never back his opponent into a corner, because then he will have nothing to lose and become the most dangerous. (Try backing a terrified dog into a corner and then reach for him. Let me know how much of your arm is left when you get back from the ER.) Twitterdum does not know to always leave his opponent an honorable way out, in fact, if necessary, to help him to find that honorable way out, to save face. Before the button is pushed, there is always time to listen, to talk, to reach consensus. Once that button is pushed it is too late. I can't help but wonder if any of Twitterdum's pet Generals have read, let alone studied and comprehended Sunzi's book. They should.

If we can afford to build an unnecessary wall, if we can afford a war of annihilation, we can afford to build a table, and cover it with food for all. We can afford to pay diplomats and translators and sit down to get to know one another. War is not the answer; Death is not the solution—they are the problem.



*Chickenhawk: chick·en hawk noun US noun: chickenhawk
1a hawk of a type that is reputed to prey on domestic fowl.
2informal a person who speaks out in support of war, yet has avoided active military service.