Sexual Politics: Witch Hunts & Blacklists

What is currently going on in the US media is nothing less than a witch hunt against male celebrities. Today, a celebrity is broadly defined as anyone on TV: athlete, actor, musician, politician, etc. The first question that must be asked is: Who is directing this? This has clearly been a planned-out & coordinated campaign, with political orders being carried out by media interests & their minions.

It began with Harvey Weinstein, a despicable Hollywood figure, which is significant. Witch hunts are roving moral blacklists, that descend upon their prey in an ordered & calculating manner. Since no one cares for Harvey Weinstein, he’s an easy first target. Everyone who personally hates him, or is with the current political agenda, gets their cut. Once established as legitimate, witch hunts takes on a life of their own. There are very few who defend fundamental democratic principles such as: presumptive innocence before definitive proof, the accuser facing the accused with their claims, or the right to privacy.

Instead we get yellow journalism, muck-raking and lies; 24/7/365 from CNN & the New York Times. The “Russian interference” campaign has worn too thin for too long, so here’s the change-up.  The analogy in baseball is when the smart hitter ignores this garbage as well, and takes ball four– again.

Barry Bonds was the greatest baseball player of his generation, and most-likely– ever. The video below is proof of this, as well as a quick slide into the sports side of blacklisting; namely Barry Bonds’ MLB Hall-of-Fame candidacy. Why are all these pitchers & pundits so afraid to throw a strike, or face the truth? [1]

Little boys, pretending to be men, to all the guys / Hysterical girls, posing as women, for all the gals    — Ric Size “Unsung”

In the mass media, there is no truth, just a non-stop side-show of distractions. When was the last time you (as a viewer) saw any serious labor coverage in the news? Strikes, work stoppages, deaths on the job; do you ever see, read, or hear about this in any depth from a rank-and-file, real-world perspective?

The answer is “No.” It’s exclusively NYSE-analysis of the labor markets in the corporate media. In a class society driven with inequality, how could it be otherwise?  What passes for “official news” today is nothing more than sports, celebrity gossip, talking head opinions, and Trump tweets.

Do you know what’s going on with the US wars being waged in Africa, Asia & Latin America? Tens-of thousands of troops have been deployed to these faraway battlefields, for reasons unknown to most of the American population. Isn’t the government of a democratic nation supposed to declare a good reason, and prove it to the people, before sending their children off to war?  What is democracy?

Soldiers being killed, maimed, and/or psychologically scarred doesn’t make the news. Neither does an analysis of what they are fighting for. The unspeakable truth is– it’s always economic (power) interests, with China & Russia being the opponents. Do you personally feel any animosity towards the people of these nations? Most Americans don’t, but the media always tells us we should, because they are the enemy. Therefore all their allies are our enemies too, and so North Korea, Syria & Iran are “existential threats” to our way of life, and must be annihilated. That is the logic of US imperialism, refracted through a corporate/intelligence media lens.

It’s still the same set-up as the Cold War, and all the old methods of red-baiting leftists & artists are being brought out again. History proved when this blacklist barrier was smashed in the 1960’s by social forces and artists like Bob Dylan & the Beatles, it became a revolutionary situation. Political figures began to be assassinated (JFK, MLK, Malcolm X, RFK), always under murky circumstances. Most remain unsolved in many ways. This was the deep state in action, snuffing out revolutionary impulses by beheading liberalism & black radicalism in the 1960’s.

Today the political enemy of the deep state are the class-conscious workers armed with socialism. The only political tendency that represents genuine socialism are the Trotskyists of the Fourth International. Every other political tendency on Earth falls within imperialism’s grasp.

The Socialist Equality Party (SEP) is the US branch of the Fourth International. In ruling circles, the SEP is equated with “Russian terrorism.” The political program of the SEP is world socialist revolution, which puts it into the most bitter life-or-death struggle against the US deep state. Hence the propaganda & Internet censorship campaigns from Google, Facebook, and the rest of corporate social media. [2]

The deep state is composed of elite political power brokers who dominate finance, Wall Street, Madison Avenue (PR), and Langley (CIA/ intelligence services). The Bush & Clinton (& now Obama!) families are part of this nexus, which pulls-the-strings on Donald Trump & the rest of the political figures you see & hear in the news.

This is the origin of this ongoing witch hunt against “sexual predators” in Hollywood, NYC & Washington. The hypocrisy of all this is astounding, as everyone knows these places are infamous for being fleshpots for the rich, glamorous & powerful. This can’t even be described as an open secret, it’s just a fact every adult knows today.

Their level of depravity is seemingly infinite, and for many common people (sadly), that’s the allure. Too many ordinary hedonists wish they could join in this depraved orgy. This is how people have been trained to be, as education & civility has been degraded. There aren’t many good jobs anymore either, even if you are a college graduate– deep in debt. So what’s there to hope for, still living with your parents at age 25?  Opioids & other prescription painkillers are readily available to soothe all types of pain…

Most Americans still aren’t ready to face the need for conscious & continuous work in political education, to prepare themselves for the necessary socialist revolution– to come. Most are too busy with day-to-day living (survival), and have been taught to take care of themselves first & always. This isn’t compatible with species survival, but don’t ever try to explain that to a liberal, as their knowledge in arts & science ends where class interests begin. In fact. these attacks are coming specifically from deep state liberal identity-politics ruling circles.

Therefore the impulse to defend celebrities, artists & left-wing politicians will not come from Democratic party supporters; it will come from the working people & youth who have dumped both parties. The truth of the two-party system is that it works together to exploit youth & workers. They appear to act in the interests of the common man/woman, from both sides of the aisle, but in earnest always defend capital– in all its forms. The Democrats use the unions & pseudo-intellectual liberalism, to blind workers and educated youth. The Republicans use religion, racism & nationalism to rally its rural working-class base. The former party is for philistines, the latter is for fascists.

The battle against blacklisting & media sex-scandal pogroms is but one front in the greater war for socialist equality, which can only be achieved by revolution. Those who are enlightened & educated are the ones who care the most about art & human culture. What is happening now is a desecration of human society, as fascists have taken the White House, and the supposed opposition (Democrat) party has done nothing to warn the people, because they are it’s most hostile enemy.

Until this fact is absorbed into the marrow of enough politically conscious workers & students, this witch hunting & Internet censorship will continue, and things will generally continue to get worse for most everybody. Once this reaction is beaten back, a revolutionary window will open, as this witch hunt campaign signals a final ideological arrow. Once you get past sex scandals & censorship, there’s nothing else to titillate & distract. Politics is then exposed for what it is, corrupt & bankrupt.

That’s when all the nonsense lies end, and revolutionary action starts. The battle lines in this upcoming civil war are already being drawn, so it’s important figure out which side is which. and what it means.  It can save a life, and the life you save may be you own, as well as those you love.

………….<><><><><>………….

North Korea Nukes Itself

According to a RAND Corporation senior researcher, Kim Jong-un believed that nuclear weapons were his guarantee of regime survival. In 2016, Kim Jong-un stated that North Korea would “not use nuclear weapons first unless aggressive hostile forces use nuclear weapons to invade on our sovereignty”. The United Nations has since enacted five cumulative rounds of sanctions against North Korea for its nuclear program and missile tests [Wiki].

North Korea has conducted six nuclear tests since 2006, all of them in tunnels burrowed deep under Mount Mantap at a site known as the Punggye-ri Nuclear Test Facility.

Satellite imagery registered an artificial 6.3-magnitude earthquake, so big that it shook houses in northeastern China, on September 3, 2017. Eight minutes later, there was a 4.1-magnitude earthquake that appeared to be a tunnel collapsing at the Punggye-ri Nuclear Test Facility.

It is now certain there is a Chernobyl-type disaster ongoing, at Kim Jong-un’s only nuclear facility. All six of North Korea’s underground nuclear tests have taken place in the same region. Apparentlytired mountain syndrome’ has caused North Korea’s only underground nuclear test site to collapse, leading to a nuclear meltdown. As many as 200 people have been said to have died already due to this catastrophe [1].

North Korea is notorious for it’s strict censorship, so on-site reporting is scant, but what’s even more remarkable is the lack of discussion in the Western press & media outlets. This is a BIG story, with political & environment repercussions globally, yet nary a word from the “free press” in over two months!

All this has surely been known in US intelligence & military circles since it happened, detected by the most-sophisticated “Five Eyes” satellite imagery, but yet kept secret from its populations in the US, UK & Australia. In the meantime, the Trump administration and the deep state have been raging their tactical differences (privately & publicly) on how to best attack North Korea. This conspiracy against the working people of the world, threatens to start a third world war. The people of the US and everywhere else have been told virtually nothing of this nuclear catastrophe in the mountains of North Korea.

This ongoing nuclear meltdown shreds every US pretext for war on North Korea. Kim Jong-un’s nuclear ambitions have obliterated into a radioactive waste site. That is why this is being kept secret in the US media. All-the-while aircraft carriers, nuclear submarines, bombers & jet fighters of every sort deploy en mass in the China Sea.

Kim Jong-un’s nuclear program has just melted itself down to its radioactive core. It poses a massive environmental threat to the entire region, and will spread radioactive dust & debris throughout the hemisphere if another test is conducted, but otherwise there is no offensive threat to the US or any other nation. And yet we are told by Trump & the rest, that North Korea is an existential threat which must be eliminated. We keep hearing this over & over, yet none of it is ever true. This pageant has a strict script, and no revisions are allowed. This is where the working masses need to intervene, with a demand of cessation of hostilities with North Korea and all other nations that haven’t attacked the US.

Kim Jong-un is the crude & stupid dictator of North Korea, who rightly fears becoming the next on a long list of dead US bogeyman, including: Panama’s Manuel Noriega, Serbia’s Slobodan Milosevic, Iraq’s Saddam Hussein, Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi, and Afghanistan’s Osama bin Laden. Kim Jong-un & Syria’s Bashar al-Assad are now in the cross-hairs. The US-imperialist campaigns directed at removing both of them from power, in the US media & political circles, rage back & forth over priority of target (Russia or China) & tactics. None of this is ever discussed in depth, or with any intelligence in the mainstream media.

A pretext has been carefully scripted in Washington to justify a devastating preemptive war on North Korea. Trump’s ‘Asian tour’ will be followed by a reactionary campaign to demonize the Chinese government for being incapable of reining in the ‘rogue state’ in Pyongyang. Kim Jong-un being on the verge of acquiring the capacity to launch nuclear attacks at the continental United States, was a central tenet to this pretext for aggression on North Korea. This has now fizzled in fact, with this nuclear meltdown. Any further US saber rattling & aggressive-posturing is blatant militarism– a war crime by definition. That should be noted & discussed before that fact.

The crisis of the Trump administration in it’s struggle-to-the-death with the US deep state is bringing all this to a head. The working masses must intervene in their own interests, against more wars-of-aggression from the criminal ruling elite in Washington, Wall Street & Langley, which attempts to assert itself militarily when it no longer has popular political support.

Trump’s conciliatory attitude towards Chinese President Xi Jinping, praising its sanctions on Pyongyang, can turn on a whim, as we have all seen. It is clear that Trump is being led by the nose, as his diplomatic calendar consists mostly of golf outings & other such diversions. With the current set-up & trajectory, any mood swing from the unstable commander-in-chief [!] could start a Dr. Strangelove-doomsday scenario.

The arrival of two additional aircraft carriers follows major US-South Korean naval war games, involving the USS Ronald Reagan, three nuclear submarines, Aegis destroyers and more than 40 other warships, proves who’s really pulling the strings. It’s the generals & top pentagon brass in charge of the US armed forces, with no civilian oversight. Civilians are the enemy, in this war. Yet the army is made of civilians, hence the dialectical rub.

The contradictions of American and global capitalism, is proceeding with an unprecedented degree of recklessness (known as Trumpism), which is used to deliberately inflame flash points everywhere. Donald Trump is under political & media attack night & day from deep state elements that want him deposed. He is facing mounting public hostility to his agenda of racism, austerity and war. Trump is being propelled towards launching this war as a means of diverting acute social tensions outwards against a foreign enemy.

US Congress is complicit is this, as they have surely been aware of this nuclear accident which happen two months ago, yet it just voted to impose sweeping new sanctions on North Korea, targeting any people or companies associated with the North Korean regime and cutting off all financial assistance [2].

This posture of reserving the use of the “nuclear option,” on a regime it knows has just melted its nuclear program into oblivion, is the height of political cynicism & recklessness. These facts need to be known by the people of the world as they happen, because they affect everyone. This information is being kept secret, in order to run a PR campaign for war on North Korea, a country that couldn’t possibly defend itself at this point. That’s why the US hawks want to go to war, easy prey. The problem is China, which the warheads conveniently ignore [3].

Last week CIA director Mike Pompeo said North Korea was only months away from having nuclear-strike capacity. “They are close enough now in their capabilities that from a US policy perspective we ought to behave as if we are on the cusp of them achieving” that objective, he said.

Trump’s Asian tour is a propaganda campaign meant to round up support for US aggression, in spite of the facts on (and under) the ground. For those studying & comparing the centenary of the Russian Revolution, which culminated on November 7, 1917; this is your “Kornilov Affair.” This militarist conspiracy against the people of North Korea must be ruthlessly exposed, while organized resistance needs to form quickly & concretely.

…………….<><>><><><><><>……………

Netflix’s “House of Cards” to be Killed

In an interview with Buzzfeed News published on Sunday night (10/29), gay actor Anthony Rapp claimed that he and Kevin Spacey were both working on Broadway in 1986, when Spacey invited him to his apartment one night for a party. Rapp alleges that Spacey, “Picked him up, placed him on his bed, and climbed on top of him, making a sexual advance.” Rapp was age 14, and Spacey age 26 at the time [1].

Yahoo: Russian trolls watched ‘House of Cards’ to learn about US politics

By Daniella Diaz, CNN Mon October 16, 2017

Washington (CNN)Yahoo correspondent Michael Isikoff [below] said on CNN’s “New Day” Monday that Russians who worked for a St. Petersburg “troll factory” were required to watch Netflix’s “House of Cards” to help them write messages that would influence Americans against their own government [2].

Between this alleged sexual encounter and today, Rapp spoke about what he claimed Spacey did to him in a Q&A with the Advocate in 2001 — “I was bored, so I was in his bedroom watching TV and didn’t know everybody had left, and he came to the bedroom and he picked me up and lay down on top of me.”  Kevin Spacey’s name was redacted from the story. Bruce Steele, then the executive editor of the Advocate, now confirms to BuzzFeed News that Rapp was talking about Spacey [3].

The noose around Kevin Spacey tightened yesterday (10/30), after his above statement on Twitter, claiming he doesn’t recall the incident in question; but said if he did so, it was “inappropriate drunken behavior.”  Spacey then declared that he is gay and is coming out of the closet.

LGBT activist groups have condemned Spacey, who has long-been-assumed to be gay, remarking, “Coming-out stories should not be used to deflect from allegations of sexual assault.”  It never occurs to these moralists that past transgressions such as these shouldn’t be withheld & buried, then conveniently used later to blackmail & destroy others for political purposes, but that’s beside the point. These practitioners of identity politics don’t want Kevin Spacey perpetuating a stereotype that associates gay men with pedophiles, so the latest icon-turned-pariah in our collective newsfeed gets kicked to the curb.

In a sane society this would be between Anthony Rapp & Kevin Spacey, since they are both adults, and both know the entertainment industry well enough by now. Unless Rapp is pressing criminal charges against Spacey (which is his right), then whatever happened between them should be settled by them, face-to-face– instead of through a media teardown campaign. As much courage as it takes a victim to admit something like that happened, it’s just as cowardly to not honestly face the accused. I have a hard time giving out merit points here, because I see only selfish interest on all sides.

This can be seen as a broader campaign against artistic freedom, and an attempt by the establishment to denigrate & cancel an embarrassing political television series. “House of Cards” is still the most popular television show as voted upon by viewers at Rotten Tomatoes. The only reason to kill it, is because it’s sending the wrong message to viewers.  In it’s five seasons, “House of Cards” has dramatized and graphically revealed the ruthless & amoral methods used by the US ruling-class to gain influence & power. In a word, it has gone too far in the eyes of the establishment censors.

So why is a minor sexual assault scandal, which was first reported in the media 16 years ago (and kept hush-hush), now being dredged-up? It is to take down an artist in his prime, along with an iconic television series. These allegations from Rapp certainly sound genuine, but why wait until now, to publicly out Kevin Spacey?

This witch-hunt is most likely a deep-state dirty-tricks campaign, with full media cooperation. McCarthyism works by taking out left-wing opposition, one at a time– until there’s no opposition left, and everyone else gets in line. It’s up to youth & thinking adults to recognize & discredit these fascist intimidation tactics, whether they come from the deep state, or Donald Trump & Stephen Bannon.

All this is going on as testimony by lawyers from Facebook, Twitter and Google begins before the Senate Judiciary Committee today, and the House and Senate intelligence committees tomorrow, on their plans to counter “extremist content and Russian disinformation online.”

“House of Cards” is now in new terrain politically, as liberal feminism, gay rights activists, and the rest of the media establishment will be screaming at Netflix to cancel this series immediately. Currently “House of Cards” is two weeks into its shooting for Season 6, which was to be it’s finale, and reportedly Kevin Spacey is not on the set. It now appears likely the show will be dropped, and the origin of this political attack must be noted by all those who care about art & free expression.

……………<><><><><><><><><><><>………….

JFK Assassination-File Release Withheld by CIA

Donald J. Trump:  Subject to the receipt of further information, I will be allowing, as President, the long blocked and classified JFK FILES to be opened.
5:35 AM – 21 Oct 2017  — via Twitter

This initially appeared to be an attempt by Donald Trump to embarrass & (possibly) blackmail Mexican bourgeoisie, as many of the to-be-released JFK files pertained to Lee Harvey Oswald’s trip to Mexico City in the weeks before the assassination. This fits in more broadly with Trump’s nationalist & racist agenda, but it also cut across too many powerful deep state interests; therefore Trump had to reverse himself (again)– and the JFK files will remain hidden from the public, 54 years after the event. Trump is at war with the intelligence deep state, and this was a maverick attempt to discredit them, while appealing to the public. More than anything, this shows the current relationship of power in Washington.

The Warren Commission (as most Americans believe) was a complete whitewash, as they refused to analyze the trajectory of the bullet that killed Kennedy. The official cause of JFK’s death was a magic bullet. Democratic senator from Pennsylvania, Arlen Specter served as assistant counsel for the Warren Commission, and helped devise the “single-bullet” theory. Marxists are materialists who reason dialectally, and therefore give no credence to anything in the Warren Report, or coming from the mass media during the ensuing cover-up, which goes on up to the present.

The amateur film of the Kennedy assassination shows Kennedy’s body being thrown backwards at the moment of the shot. The book depository, from where Lee Harvey Oswald was supposedly firing, was behind the motorcade. A bullet fired from there would push Kennedy’s body forward, not backwards.

Note that this same physics applies to 9/11, as both twin towers collapsed a free-fall speed (taking ~10 seconds), indicating a controlled demolition, instead of the official US government version.

The bullet that went into JFK’s head, is missing in the materials of the case, as is his brain which had been taken for examination. More than 50 people, who eye-witnessed the mysterious assassination, died mysteriously afterwards. The surgeon, who performed the autopsy of Kennedy’s body, was found dead in his apartment.

The taxi driver, who gave Oswald a lift, died in a car accident. One of the eyewitnesses of the assassination who testified about two men shooting from behind the fence lost his life as well [1].

And then there is Jack Ruby. Why did the police let Jack Ruby shoot & kill Oswald at point-blank range, as he was being transported from a police department to a Dallas prison, only two days after JFK’s death?  Answer: Oswald could disclose the names of his handlers from the CIA and the FBI, so special services set-up a mob-type hit on him. A little more than three years after Oswald’s death, Jack Ruby died in prison, under mysterious circumstances [2].

All amateur photos and video materials depicting the moment of Kennedy’s assassination had been confiscated and immediately classified. The main amateur video, which was made as the motorcade was traveling on the street, was edited in a way to exclude footage showing the existence of another shooter, who was taking aim at the president from behind the fence.

The JFK assassination & it’s cover-up, strikingly resembles 9/11 & it’s aftermath. Both were deep-state controlled, false-flag operations, with complete media compliance, which shifted US politics to the right. To figure them out, one only has to start by asking, “Who benefits?”

………….<><><><><><><>……….

Breaking the NFL Blacklist

Donald Trump is the only person who couldn’t be satisfied with destroying just one football league. Every time he tries to use an issue to ignite his fascist base, he pours gasoline on a bigger fire of working class resentment towards inequality. This is the REAL problem the ruling class has with Trump. These are the NFL players who didn’t stand for the National Anthem last Sunday.

The Green Bay Packers now need a starting QB after HoF-er Aaron Rogers went down with a broken collar-bone last Sunday against the Minnesota Vikings. Packers fans are like most of the rest, willfully accepting (and thus supporting) their GM & ownership, in showing no interest in signing blacklisted-QB Colin Kaepernick. Not even a try-out [!]. Why so many fans support billionaires & cheats is revealed by the fact that most of this is NOT about football. It’s about politics, and class interest directs every loyalty.

GM Ted Thompson & the consortium running the Green Bay Packers, are publicly stating their QB situation is stable, and they like what they have going forwards… In Green Bay it’s two unproven rookies for QB. The 4-2 Packers are going with rookie-QB Brett Hundley this Sunday at Lambeau Field against the 3-2 Saints. This is more-or-less what 20+ other teams (that would also improve themselves by signing QB Colin Kaepernick) are doing.

Here’s some necessary background on how Colin Kaepernick became a free agent, and thus blacklisted. The San Francisco 49ers tried to cut him, before his 2016 salary became guaranteed in March of that year, because he hadn’t fully recovered from sustained injuries. Fortunately for Kaepernick, an NFL player with a guaranteed contract (like CK had), can’t be cut if he’s on the injured list.

Kaepernick was always considered the 49ers starting QB in 2016 from the beginning, he was simply unavailable for the first 6 games– due to injury rehabilitation. He finished the season productive & healthy on a bad team, and opted-out of his contract because the 49ers were going to cut him anyways–  over the Anthem protest controversy he had started. Opting-out was his attempt to get himself into the free agent market early, so he would have as many potential suitors as possible. No one ever called. As we can see, there are OSHA, worker compensation & other rights’ issues here. That’s why this topic is so explosive.

In an ESPN article published yesterday, SF 49ers owner Jed York said, “[I]t’s not about collective bargaining issues, it’s not about workplace environment…,”  when those are precisely the issues. Sports fans need to stop believing lying billionaire team-owners, as this sports-addiction has become too costly for all of us. Too much of it funnels into unhealthy & reactionary tendencies. That is at the heart of this conflict for many, many football fans.

Every time Trump tweets on the NFL, everyone in the league office has their blood-pressure go up 100+ points. When the dust settles, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has to sit down with Trump privately, so they can appear to be in unison again– and so it goes on.  Donald Trump simply manipulates anyone (or anything) he wants, to meet whatever reactionary agenda is on his docket. Many powerful people, in even-higher places, are getting tired of his act.

This is clearly a blacklist, and it is why Colin Kaepernick is now suing the NFL and its owners for collusion. If there is justice, Kaepernick will win– or better, he will soon be offered a NFL contract. I expect neither from the owners, nor the bourgeois ‘halls of justice.’

One can take either 1) owner’s & management’s words to heart–like a naive fool; or 2) see through the lies of the NFL, which is blacklisting a quality QB for his political dissent, while threatening to do the same to other players– see Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones [1].

On the flag and respect for military veterans. It isn’t a soldiers’ choice in war, he is sent & obeys because it’s his duty– like all the rest. Meanwhile others such as myself get to go to college… That’s a great divider, in class, and feelings towards war.  My friends & classmates from high school (and ALL others) didn’t serve as soldiers to be used as pawns by politicians of ANY stripe. They served so “We the (Working) People” have the right to call these politicians out as liars & criminals– because they are.

This paranoid reaction of censorship & blacklisting must be met with determined & fierce resistance. Those who served in the military must be allowed to speak for themselves, because those are the rights they fought for– (or were told that’s what they fought for). It turns out that many veteran feel lied-to by Uncle Sam, yet you rarely (if ever) hear that sentiment expressed in the media. Only on the fringes, yet in reality it’s a widespread understanding among veterans that the US government is corrupt to the core.

That’s why most veterans still have guns, and exercise them regularly. They fought for that right too, and are serious about that one in particular. Veterans need to realize that EVERY right for EVERY person needs to be defended with that same vigilance, otherwise ALL rights disappear. In other words, it’s time for them to join the socialist revolution, through the World Socialist Web Site at wsws.org.

Back to sports, which is a business. It hurts as a fan when you grow up and realize the truth. Upon reading the ESPN write-ups of the players-and-owners meeting on Tuesday, I knew the players were lost. They spoke to the press afterwards in terms of, “… getting their message through… constructive conversation…, etc…” Remarkably, no mention of the National Anthem. It was expressly stated by both the owners & players that the issue didn’t come up [!].

The players need to smell the rat here, and it’s the union bureaucracy & their lawyers. The players didn’t even bring up the fundamental issue (which everyone has been talking about for weeks now) to the owners, according to every player account of the Tuesday meeting. If that’s what happened (and it appears it is), then this meeting was clearly a waste of time for everybody, as nothing of substance was discussed.

On hand at the October 17th meeting were NFL Commish Roger Goodell and the league’s football operations chief, former player Troy Vincent.

Owners: Michael Bidwill (Arizona), Arthur Blank (Atlanta), Terry Pegula (Buffalo), Robert McNair (Houston), Shad Khan (Jacksonville), Ross, Robert Kraft (New England), John Mara (New York Giants), Art Rooney (Pittsburgh), Jeffrey Lurie (Philadelphia) and Jed York (San Francisco).

Former player Anquan Boldin, and current players Darius Butler (Colts); Eric Reid (49ers); Russell Okung (Los Angeles Chargers); Kenny Stills, Julius Thomas and Michael Thomas (Miami); Mark Herzlich (New York Giants); Kelvin Beachum and Demario Davis (New York Jets); Malcolm Jenkins [above] and Chris Long (Philadelphia); and Josh Norman (Washington) [1].

Representing the players were NFL Players Association executive director DeMaurice Smith and president Eric Winston.

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones wasn’t even at this Tuesday meeting, basically blowing the players off. The players didn’t even recognize (much less acknowledge) this, in their press comments. Since Jerry Jones is the owner who is driving this issue for all the rest (& NFL commissioner Roger Goodell), the double-cross will come when the players are looking the other way, with assistance from the union. If the chief conspirator can avoid looking his victims in the eye beforehand, so much the better for him and their cause. Who will warn the players by telling them the truth?

The brains of the corruption-ridden NFLPA is black racialist attorney DeMaurice Smith, the Executive Director of the National Football League Players Association (NFLPA)– elected on March 15, 2009. Prior, DeMaurice Smith was a trial lawyer and litigation partner in a white-collar Washington, D.C. firm. NFL players mostly come from ghettos & poor rural areas, so the hypocrisy in class interests for the rank-and-file in legal representation of the NFL players is clear to Marxists.

The NFL players have basically lost every labor stand-off they’ve ever had with their owners. The NFLPA (union bureaucracy) is staffed with too many ex-players suffering too much CTE brain damage– making these public figures easy prey for ownership manipulation in negotiations. It’s no secret if you actually look at it closely, but not any dummy can figure it out.

The NFL players have no leadership. Note that QB Colin Kaepernick wasn’t invited to this meeting, by any NFL official or authorized union representative of the NFLPA. That explains the rapid movement to the right on this fundamental workers’ rights issue, which every sports fans has a strong opinion on. Many players stated they wanted Kaepernick there, and didn’t know why he wasn’t invited? The NFL players need to elect new leaders for themselves, the same way labor workers need to, on any other job site.

This is fundamentally a labor rights issue. The question becomes: will the NFL players (and eventually the rest of us), be compelled to express political & religious obedience on command? If you don’t have the right to oppose tyranny & lies, then it’s dictatorship with a military-intelligence-police-state apparatus controlling everything, through Wall Street & the banks. This must be opposed with true democracy, which can only be achieved through a socialist revolution in permanence.

 

      1. Working Class

 

………….<><><><><><><>………..

Top-10: Minnesota Vikings Terrible

This list was surprisingly easy to compile, ~ 30 minutes off the top of my head. This organization is a model of dysfunction, remarkable in its inefficiency, even by capitalist standards.

10) PK Rick Danmeier, the last of the toe-punch kickers in the NFL. His XPM % would be <50% with today’s rules. Vikings head coach Bud ‘Stoneface’ Grant stuck with Danmeier’s awfulness season-after-season, saying he didn’t see the need to replace him. Maximum FG range– 43 yards or so, depending on the conditions…

Vikings hypothetical scenario in 1983:  4th & 9 on the opposing 28 yard-line, with the wind slightly gusting…. Bud Grant has a decision to make?  The field-goal attempt is spotted 7 yards back in that day, making it highly questionable…. Punter Greg Coleman (brother of Vince with the MLB St. Louis Cardinals), is an option here…

Frequent Result: “Vikings called for delay of game penalty– five yards… That definitely takes them out of Danmeier’s range… Coleman boots it high & deep…. and it’s a touch-back. Opposition’s ball on their 20-yard line– 1st & 10.”

9) 1998, when they were by far the best team in the NFL, and still lost in the NFC championship game– to a mediocre Atlanta Falcons team, that lost to the Denver Broncos in the Super Bowl. That team is the NFC version of the 18-1 NE Patriots, that lost the Super Bowl to the NY Giants.  Roughly equivalent to the NBA’s Golden State Warriors 73-win season, where they lost the finals the Cleveland Cavilers.

8) Losing 4 Super Bowls— all in the 1970’s. Truth is: Tom Landry & Don Shula were more innovative, with roughly the same level of talent.

7) Never making it to another Super Bowl, since loss #4. With all of Bud Grant’s limitations, he’s still the best head coach in their history. I don’t know how you can be proud of that, but many faithful still are. It’s Brad Childress & Dennis Green competing for next-best Vikings head coach by result.

6) Trading HoF WR Randy Moss to the Raiders, for a 1st-round pick, which was yet another draft bust. Hall-of-Fame playmakers don’t grow on trees. Smart teams hold onto them. The only lasting playmakers the Vikings ever drafted (since 1960) are QB Fran Tarkenton, WR Anthony Carter, WR Randy Moss, and RB Adrian Paterson; with too many busts in between.

5) Scat-back Darren Nelson, instead of RB Marcus Allen;  In 1983, QB Dan Marino was available, but the Vikes took FS Joey Browner, etc… They’ve never replaced QB Fran Tarkenton, hence their SB-appearance drought. The Bills are are 0-4 in their Super Bowl appearances, but at least they got the QB they needed to get there (Jim Kelley) in this once-in-a-lifetime 1983 draft class. The Bills had to wait for Kelley, who signed with the USFL and played there for three seasons before it folded. That was the inaugural USFL draft, and the top player selected in it was Dan Marino. Their original ownership had more brains & innovation than the NFL, but then Donald Trump (& the rest of corporate America) came along [1].

4) Mike Lynn’s Herschel Walker trade, probably the worst trade in sports history. No deal represents such astounding ownership mis-management & short-sightedness more clearly, with a complete inability to identify talent or essential needs correctly.

3) Losing the 2009 conference championship game to the Saints, when they had the better team with QB Brett Favre in his last great season. They probably would have beaten the Colts in the SB, but were robbed by incompetent & inexplicably bad officiating. The NFL even changed its overtime rules because of how the game ended. It’s characteristic for the Vikings to lose in this fashion, it just is.

2) Les Steckel in 1984.  Steckel, a coach with a military background emphasizing discipline, became the 3rd head coach in franchise history, replacing Stoneface. Steckel ran a marine-style training (boot) camp, where his players didn’t learn to play football together, but instead competed for individual endurance & fitness prizes. For the record: All-Pro TE Steve Jordan won the overall team fitness award; and (50-year old) K Jan Stenerud won among the kickers, punters & QB’s [!]. I think they each won a VCR. The Vikes went 3-13 and were the joke of the league that season. Bud Grant briefly came out of retirement to replace Steckel in 1985. For true die-hards, this season hurt like no other in franchise history.

1) The Metrodome & now U.S. Bank Stadium with its a fixed-roof stadium. Metropolitan Stadium was better for the Vikings than either of these boondoggles, but then money rules. Artificial turf is an affront to athletes, as their health and well-being is being disregarded, for the preferences of the bourgeoisie.  The Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome extended a trend of artificial turf playing surfaces in the 1980’s, precisely when it should have gone away…

… onward to the present:

One of the NFL teams that should sign QB Colin Kaepernick is the Minnesota Vikings. They won’t because they are too stupid to ever win a Super Bowl. One note on blacklists, they’re “unofficial” by nature– therefore impossible to “prove,” unless you use your head and follow the money. Identifying blacklists is very much like dealing with dog shit. If it looks & smells like dog shit– it probably is.

The converse to that is this dirty parable: Two guys are walking along a road and come upon what appears to be a pile of dog shit.
The head guy say to the other, “Looks like dog shit. Take a closer look…”
So the other guy gets down on his knees and looks closely, then responding, “Looks like dog shit.”
Then the head guy says, “Smell it.”  So the other takes a whiff and replies, “Smells like dog shit.”
Then the head guy says, “Taste it.” So the other guy sticks his tongue on it and winces, “Tastes like dog shit!”

Then head honcho then grins & nods while summarizing, “Good thing we didn’t step in it.”

Colin Kaepernick would be an immediate upgrade for ~20 NFL teams, yet he can’t find a job. No question he’s blacklisted, that’s what his lawsuit against the NFL for collusion is about [2].

It’s a real problem in America when a top-level QB is blackballed for expressing a political opinion, for which he has every right to express; while (for instance) a serial rapist is still the starting QB in Pittsburgh.

This defines the “character” of the NFL and many of it’s fans. It’s getting to be too much nonsense, with these apologists in favor of blacklisting political dissent. If you feel the same, then speak up and act while you still have the right. It’s those who agree, but remain silent, who are the most complicit. Such behavior parallels Germany in the 1930’s…

…………><><><><><><><>……………

Talladega Racin’ & Mass Insanity

I’m listening on MRN online, so I know I’m getting the best coverage.  This one’s gonna hurt, I just know.  Here’s some of what I’m hearing, with me in […]

Grand Marshall: Governor of Alabama, Kay Ivey (above)
“Lady & gentlemen… start your engines.”   [Shit]

Dave Moody (above): “…and when necessary,  4 and 5-wide coming out of turn 2 [!] …..” [Critique: I like Dave Moody who calls turns 1 & 2 for most NASCAR Cup events– he knows & loves racing, and isn’t afraid to speak his mind– mostly. He gets a lot of airtime, and he deserves it, as he has lots of fans. He’s a big dude, so he fits right in there…]

Mike Bagley (below): “…drafting three-and-four-wide on the backstretch, if you bail out of the draft– you go to the back..”  [Critique: Mike Bagley calls turns 3 & 4, and is more cerebral (which I like), but still gets worked up as things begin to heat up– which I also like. Moody & Bagley work well together, and they are one of the best parts of the NASCAR race day experience]

The MRN pit reporters do a nice job explaining the essentials: 46 laps max on fuel, tire strategy isn’t in play at Talladega– with 6 sets on the ground, and one on the car to start. Everyone finishes with plenty of tires. [It’s finishing with plenty of car that’s tricky]. Avoiding a speeding penalty on pit road, is stressed; [but that really doesn’t matter either, as Dale, Jr gets his 8th pit-road speeding infraction of the season on lap 52, yet he still finishes 7th, and was in contention for the win at the end, simply because he was one of the few cars still on the track].

Every guys’ MRN-favorite is Kim Coon (below) in the pits, garage & care center– and also monitoring social media, which is very important to NASCAR & its fans. You can understand why?

Talladega is 188 laps, distancing 500 miles. The first two stages end at lap 55, and lap 110. Each lap is 2.66 miles, the longest anywhere. Talladega is notoriously the fastest and most-dangerous racetrack in the world.

Jamie McMurray, Jeffrey Earnhardt and Mark Thompson are involved in an early wreck. McMurray has major damage, as it seems you can’t cut across a faster car coming off turn-4 into pit road, especially at Talladega. [Who knew?]  That ends #1 McMurray’s play-off hopes, unless he wins at Kansas next week, which he won’t.

(Above) in the broadcast booth, Joe Moore stresses this is another of the big challenges at Talladega… [By this he means: any idiot can cause a major wreck at anytime, anywhere, and there’s nothing you can do to avoid it. That’s Talladega…]

Following online means checking the NASCAR update feed. Here it is [edited for clarity & correction] for Talladega on October 15, 2017:

Lap 29: After the McMurray wreck, and pit-road-closed penalties were issued to 6 drivers: 24, 88, 23, 27, 42, 95.

Lap 30: Drivers who didn’t pit during caution now on pit road: 20, 78, 19, 11, 18, 48, 6, 32, 5, 13.

Lap 38: Top-six cars are single file: 22, 2, 14, 21, 41, 19. Three-wide racing behind them.

Lap 51: Caution is out! Paul Menard #27 gets into the wall in Turn 3. Thinks he cut a left-front tire.

Lap 52: No takers as far as the leaders are concerned on pit road. Others pit: 18, 88, 42, 20, 34, 19, 78 among them.

Lap 52: Penalty for @DaleJr. Too fast on pit road. He’ll start from tail end of the longest line for restart. [8th time this season, most in NASCAR]

Lap 78: Matt Dibenedetto #32 now has a 21-second lead over second-place driver Stenhouse.  [This isn’t supposed to be happening. NASCAR will do something to ‘correct’ this]

Lap 81: Caution is out for debris. Denny Hamlin loose wheel onto pit road, [saved his race…. was running 31st– Suh-prize!]

Lap 81: Caution came out as @dennyhamlin pits for loose wheel. He beats the lead to the pit out line. Stays on lead lap

Lap 156: @keselowski is the only driver to come down pit road under caution. Attempting to fix radio issues. [He took the extra time to do it, and he ended up winning Talladega– racing is a team sport. Being in back helped #2 avoid the wrecks up front. Hard to believe that could be race strategy, but there you are.]

Lap 171: New leader! @Daniel_SuarezG takes the lead from @joeylogano.

Lap 171: Red flag is out. Cars involved in the Big One: 17, 78, 41, 18, 38, 95, 34, 20, 10, 3, 4, 75, 32, 95, 48… Officially, 16 cars involved in the multi-car wreck at @TalladegaSuperS. [SHIT– my driver wrecked again. I hate NASCAR]

Lap 177: Caution is out! Ryan Blaney, Kevin Harvick, Joey Logano, Brendan Gaughan involved.

Lap 179: Lineup for the restart with just 8 laps to go: 19, 24, 88, 42, 2, 11, 31, 5, 13, 42, 83, 27, 38, 37.

Lap 182: Caution is out! @chaseelliott tags @Daniel_SuarezG and they wreck.

Lap 182: Red flag is out at @TalladegaSuperS once again. Cars involved: 19, 24, 42, 37.

Lap 183: Still under a red flag. Leaderboard: 2, 31, 88, 11, 13, 5, 43, 6, 83, 38. [Everyone else is wrecked]

There is no way NASCAR can race 40 of today’s cars at Talladega, and not end up with a wreck-fest. Twenty is probably too many. NASCAR needs to get this track under control, for the safety of it’s drivers. To say this race is a joke, only minimizes how dangerous Talladega is. Luck is primary in avoiding the two or three BIG ONES at Talladega.

Martin Truex, Jr #78 needs to know you can’t bump another car in the draft going into the corner at Talladega. That frequently causes a BIG ONE.  Chase Elliott #24 needs to know that you must stay behind the lane leader (#19– Daniel Suarez) and stay in the draft, instead of trying for 3-wide in the corner at Talladega– as that will cause a BIG ONE. Fans know this. Why don’t these “professionals” understand this?

These are supposedly the top drivers. F1 and Indycar must look at NASCAR as a joke, which it is. That spectacle on Sunday was possibly the worst race ever held at a major venue– a complete disgrace to sports. The Talladega infield faithful  & the rest who cheered at every crash are reactionary idiots. Why do NASCAR and its sponsors continue to cater to them? Answer: To dumb fans down to their level.

…………<><><><><><><><>………..

National Anthem Protocol for Revolutionists

There has been much talk about behavior during the playing of the National Anthem at sporting events. Notice how it’s always the behavior of the players (workers), that is the focus of discussion. The owners & fascist fans can do whatever they want, but the players must be strictly controlled & censured. Each league has now re-iterated and/or clarified it’s policy during the National Anthem performance [1].

Of course, few ever bother to ask the most-important question, “Why is this song even played before sporting events?” That question is not allowed to be asked, and if you do, you are blacklisted by the “legitimate” media & political world. Americans are divided over the National Anthem on class lines. This fact is always concealed by ESPN & the rest of the corporate fake media.

One of the silver linings to being blacklisted is that you can do whatever you want, because it doesn’t matter– as you are permanently shut out of the mainstream. You will never see ideas such as these expressed in corporate-controlled mass media.  In that spirit, these are my suggestions on how to approach this hot-button topic. I encourage others who feel similarly, to express yourself in a way that makes you feel comfortable, while staying true. By the way, all this also applies to “God Bless America,” (or anything else that shouldn’t be played) during the 7th-inning stretch, etc.

For many like me, the National Anthem is a convenient bathroom break, so as a rule I never kneel for it, although I sometimes squat. I’m not alone, as the bathroom is usually crowded while the Anthem is being performed. No one takes their hat off, or stops mid-piss in the john. These are just personal observations from 40+ years of attending virtually every type of sporting event in the United States.

Professionally speaking, I don’t think “The Star-Spangled Banner” is a very good song. I was never all that moved by it, even as a child. But I will admit that I’ve sung it a lot, as it’s a useful song. By this I mean, “The Star-Spangled Banner” is a very difficult song to sing well. Therefore it is an excellent vocal-training tool. I’ve never sung it before an audience.

When the lyrics hit, “… and the rockets’ red glare,” is when most amateurs lose it. Often the Anthem performance is painful to watch/hear, especially when done by kids, but you are never allowed to be critical of that– after all this is AMERICA! We won’t allow our kids (who are trying their best) to be “bullied.”  So to be fair, here instead is one of the most infamous adult examples of Francis Scott [off]Key:

Beyond being a voice training tool, I don’t see much else of value here. It’s primary function (of course) is its nefarious use by the ruling class to whip up nationalism & militarism among under-educated workers & the rest. Why do team owners & their leagues fear these protests so much? To ask the question is to answer it, as it indicates how class divided we are as a society. This fact must be concealed at all costs, by the haves.

Free speech means you have the right to say whatever someone else deems as “most offensive,” just as long as you don’t threaten, libel, or cause a panic. It’s also free speech to stand like a zombie when the Anthem plays & the flag waves. We all make choices and live with them. Colin Kaepernick (SF 49ers), Bruce Maxwell (Oakland A’s), and every other athlete have this right, and those of us fighting fascism encourage every athlete to exercise it. As they have pointed out– too many don’t have a voice, so professional athletes are now behooved to stand up for them.

As far as Trump demanding respect for the flag goes, respect is a two-way street. Evidentially in order for 2016 NASCAR champion Jimmie Johnson to get a White House invite, he has to hail Trump, while declaring his unabiding loyalty. Otherwise, no invitation. Jimmie Johnson has already said he supports everyone’s right to make their own decision, while personally standing for the flag & anthem [2]. That’s just not good enough, for everyone from Donald Trump to the liberal-Democrat McCarthyists who have censored the Internet and blacklisted all political opposition.

Do you know who the least likely people to stand and pay attention for “The Star-Spangled Banner” are?” Answer: The rich folks in the box seats. Check for yourself next time, if you don’t believe that. No one tunes in, or pays for a ticket to see the National Anthem performed, in any sport. Tell anyone who gives you flak on this, to get real with their hypocritical indignity, and then look for the class interest behind their attacks. The National Anthem (and the flag) are used as tools for class control. Working people must be made to bow before them, because it symbolizes the rule of wealth under capitalism.

 

      1. Land of the Free

 

The truth of truths here is that taking a knee, while courageous at first, still isn’t enough. Sports don’t unite us, they divide us– daily, in so many ways. That’s why front-row seats cost so much more. It’s a different game when you’re watching from the nose-bleed seats, isn’t it!? Within all this, the athletes themselves are divided, because their salaries are so varied. Rookies are generally underpaid, while veterans are overpaid. There are only a few superstars in each sport, and they usually get all the ink, especially when labor issues arise.

Taking a knee, now gives ANY athlete an opportunity to express themselves. Most still don’t, out of fear of being blacklisted. Colin Kaepernick is most-definitely blacklisted by the NFL, as he’s easily a top-10 QB– which ~20 teams need. Winning on the field is important to most owners, but protecting their wealth is EVERYTHING. Sports are owned by billionaires, who provide a vehicle for the rulers of capitalism (Wall Street & Madison Avenue) to exercise mind-control class warfare on the population.

In the end, we watch sports because we love them. These athletes do things we can’t, and it’s fun (and sometimes amazing) to watch them work. Most fans are with the athletes in all this, as they (at least) can feel things being manipulated, even if they don’t fully understand it. Many others already know, and their numbers are increasing daily.

This is what the ruling class fears above all else: a movement from the working people that gets out of their control. Modern sports, combined with social media and the Internet, now provide global links for discussions that can create worker solidarity across all fields.  That is the power which fans & athletes must harness into a revolution, in order to stop this unending cycle of capitalist violence.

If this isn’t done, be forewarned that fascism is preparing itself for a hostile takeover. It’s political base is still weak, and they can still be contained & defeated, but only through conscious revolutionary action. Anything less is an empty gesture.

…………<><><><><><><>……….

Fakebook Beds with CIA

This is Mark Warner (D-Va), vice-chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Evidentially in late May, after much prodding from Obama, he personally paid a visit to Mark Zuckerberg at Facebook headquarters…

Fakebook has since snapped into line, and produced a list of 3,000 accounts– which it has turned over to intelligence services. Is your account one of them…?

This fake news about “sowing divisions” during the 2016 election, is nothing but a neo-McCarthyist attack on free speech [1].

There are two ways to change people’s minds: sexual attraction & sense of humor

Those who are best at both are Jokers

They are the most valuable cards in any game

………………<><><><><><><><>……………

“Back to Normal” in the Irma Aftermath

Background: Irma Aftermath & Civil War

Once all your modern conveniences have been rightfully restored, your life doesn’t just switch back to normal. For those who were never without, they continue to zip along at the speed of Internet. But as a former refugee in your own city, you now have to re-acclimate yourself to modern life. A/C and replenishing essentials is only part of it. You’re behind on sleep, laundry, cleaning and other chores; and that’s if you were lucky enough not to be flooded. Your eating rhythm has been disrupted, and food choices cut-off with no electricity. Personal hygiene literally goes out the window. No privacy in a neighborhood with no power, as everyone’s windows are open 24/7, unless there’s a generator running. Time is money, and those without power seem to be more short on both, compared to those who weren’t. This is a political, economic & policed war I’m describing here.

Hurricane Irma’s eye passed one week ago, but it was the “Aftermath” most of us have had the hardest time surviving. More people are being flooded out daily, as the rains keep coming, meaning more water which has no place to go. Florida is a sinking boat. The “important” structures are safe for now, so their sandbags (and any other resources) have been stored away instead of being put to good use elsewhere. For the most part nothing is being done, while the government & media are managing this crisis by censoring it, in a desperate attempt to get everything “back to normal.” Power & Internet restoration is being manipulated by the flick of a switch from the puppet masters. Most of Florida still doesn’t have Internet, so it’s hard for people outside this area to see & hear the truth from first-hand refugee survivors. If more people were being allowed to get online, you’d be hearing a much different story, versus what the media has been shoveling.

I’m on my bike this Monday morning, making my rounds. My working partner in the manager’s offices gives me another fist bump over getting Internet back to the complex. She still has no power at her home. Her & her husband are running a generator on & off. Generator sales have spiked since the storm, and reportedly there’s legislation in the works to make them mandatory. “Funny how people are expected to pay more & more, for the services they’re supposed to have,” I remark then leave.  She’s about 40, holding up well, and really cute on top of everything else. That’s a good woman, boys & girls. I tell her I’ll say a few words for her down at City Hall. She’s grateful that I’ve got her back, and likewise.

I get to City Hall with a backpack full of recyclables. I’m stuffing them into a bin in front of their doors– one of the few around town. Some poor fellow is seated a table away with some papers in his hand. I ask him, “Do you have power?” He looks at me for a second, and says, “No.” I already knew. I’m almost finished stuffing everything glass & plastic into the bin. “They don’t make it easy to do the right thing, do they?”, I say to him. “No, they don’t,” is his response. I let him know I’ll say a few words for him inside.

I leave my bicycle against the glass window unlocked. I’m 100% confident it won’t get messed with as long as he’s still out there. The you-know-what secretary is behind the glass again, and I think she saw me coming this time, because she doesn’t even look up. My sixth sense tells me she’s found me online. I say to her, “Still a lot of people without power.” She replies without looking at me, “Really?” I move into the doors which open so the guy outside can also hear me, and say out loud, “I tell ALL of them to come here.”

Onto the Internet station, which today has cars in the back parking lot. I park on their front doorstep with the kickstand down, and try the door. To my surprise, it opens so I walk in. There’s a sliding glass window to my right, with a security-coded locked door on the opposite wall. I try the window, and notice youngish female secretaries working inside. The glass is heavily tinted, and I can only see the younger one clearly at first, with whom I converse– as the other looks on. I ask how the Internet restoration is going, and she looks at me– puzzled? I explain some more, but no use. I’m told they just “serve papers” here, as her supervisor steps up to assist in this matter. Me: “What kind of papers?” Them: “We can’t say.” Me: Why not?” Them: Blank stares.

I’m peddling up to speed again, and make note of the Internet line Spectrum “fixed” the other night, which now has a rope lassoing it to an adjacent palm tree. It’s hitched in-between the yellow caution tape that still floats in the wind. It’s haard to fix this stuff right– you understand?

Onto the post office to recycle my mail. Except I discover there is no bin for that anymore. I saw one the week before, as I walked by, but alas no more. I interrupt everyone waiting and working to ask out loud, if there are any recycling bins in the post office? The main manager looks around for a second or two, then mumbles, “Ahh…No.”  Me: “That’s what I thought.” Then looking to everyone waiting in line, “Make you wonder, huh?” I then stuff all my junk mail into the nearest garbage can, as everyone looks on. That’s when you give up, and I always prefer to do it dramatically– in front of a public audience. You’re sending a message to everyone with your actions. I park my bike inside here.

Speaking of things you wonder about, yesterday I walked by Lake Monroe and talked with a black couple fishing at the seawall. They were the only one’s fishing, as water is now pouring over most of the Sanford seawall.  He’s lived & fished here for over 20 years, and says he’s never see the water so high. There has been a small yacht moored out in the middle of the lake for months, even through the hurricane. I saw it bobbing in the waves as the rain & gales were picking up, and took this shot (below) on my iPhone. It’s center-right, and the fisherman tells me it’s been there for years, yet no one knows what it’s doing there?

I reach my produce stand and see a sign that reads: closed. I check their hours and see they’re always closed on Monday’s. I knew that. I’m just a little off, still– and here it is showing up again. It shows up in so many little ways, that put you behind the eight-ball in everything. I needed the exercise anyways, I say to myself on the way back, as it begins to drizzle again. That’s another thing you don’t do so much of with no power in Florida.

The oil companies, hotels, grocery stores, restaurants, furniture rental companies, electricians, and water damage clean-up professionals, etc are all busy busy. Many of the people who do the actual work in these fields, have no power/Internet themselves. Meanwhile, their bosses in management & CEO’s are all getting fat. You can see it & feel it all starting to simmer…

I do have Internet, so when I get home and jump online, and see that Maria is now a major hurricane in the Caribbean. It’s just what we don’t need, as we just aren’t prepared for it; and yet it’s just what’s coming, just as everything is “getting back to normal.”  This is how most of us are surviving the madness that is Florida.

All of a sudden it’s beep-beep-beep of a utility truck. I look out and it’s Waste-Pro. Time to get my garbage out. The plastic bag in the refrigerator is pulled out, and all other indoor waste bins have their contents emptied into it. It’s not much, less than half a bag. I cut my own hair, and clean my own teeth, as it just works better for me. In Mount Dora, I had creepy blue-haired neighbors breaking into my garbage. I can’t make this stuff up.

The vehicle rolls by as we approach the next dumpster. I give him “the wave,” as always. Pedestrians would get killed less if they used proper hand signals to alert drivers as to their intentions. Proper signaling eliminates confusion & unnecessary accidents. He’s out of his truck and has unlatched the gate as I arrive with my contribution. “It’s bullshit they make you do this by yourself,” I say to him. I toss my garbage in and pick up the remaining trash on the ground and throw it in too. “We already have enough flies and garbage in Lake Monroe… thanks, for what you do,” I say in parting. He’s  happy to hear that and returns, “I’m used to it, Take it easy, dude.”  Walking back into my apartment I’m thinking to myself, that’s me, the dude– takin’ it easy for all you sinners.

Well that just about wraps it up, and it was a pretty good story to boot. Made me laugh to beat the band. Parts anyways. I don’t like to see people getting flooded out, or living without power, or even Internet. But I do happen to know that things are “getting back to normal. That sure is something, ain’t it?

==

Post-Script: A few hours later I know everything is cool again, as I’m finally listening to the record I should be: Zen Arcade by Husker Du. This is one of the greatest bands ever, a trio that never sold out, thus they never cashed in. Broke up in 1987, and rumors of them reforming up until drummer, singer & songwriter Grant Hart was pronounced dead the other day.  It is said that some bands go to 10– or even 11. Husker Du went to 20. Too many people just don’t know, and that bothers me.

I notice the 12-year old boy going up the stairwell with his backpack full. I go outdoors and check my mailbox. There’s a bank statement, along with junk mail from Spectrum concerning an upgrade in Internet service, and a mailer from Aaron’s furniture rental.  After I process that, I’m off to you-know-where, to try to close the deal with you-know-who.

She’s not there, and I figured that might be the case tonight. Oh well, maybe next time… The place is fairly empty, and there’s no one at the bar– completely creeper-free. I’ll take that any day, and grab a convenient seat or two. It’s Open Mic night and the regulars are warming up. I saw one of them as I was walking in. I often joke to myself, “Rock star entering the building,” when I see this. Then when it all settles down, I quietly go in myself. One of them announces that anyone can sign up and play with them, or do their own thing… They know who I am, but never approach me directly for some reason, so I will: Ric Size doesn’t sign autographs, and needs to be paid.

I chat with the bartender, who is one of my favorites. She didn’t have power for two days, like me. The sound from the 4-piece band has no low end, so I tell the manager who fixes it. The guys are rockin’ much better now, and you can tell because people are grooving their bodies. Common mistake, not enough bass. Someone says something into the mic between songs about “beating someone’s wife,” or whatever… Microphone abuse happens too.

I explain to the barkeeper that people sometimes get in front of the microphone, and go crazy. I then insist, that I never do that. She’s trying to control her burst of laughter as she runs outside. She does well. I know she knows who I am, as she told me earlier (in confidence) that I’m horrible. Yup, she’s been reading me online, and I laugh at her critique. After she returns from the kitchen, I explain that I only say what I say, because it needs to be said, and that it’s all out of love. She accepts that, and we’re good. I’m glad, because she is pouring  & serving my drinks. I’m an A-1 bitch, getting away with murder. Gotta be able to hang with the bitches, boys. Have you heard the legend of how Robert Johnson died? I’m telling you guys, it’s NOT bitchy to think this stuff. But it is bitchy to share it.

Heading home I see a homeless man curling up on a park bench. “Are you going to sleep here tonight?”, I inquire in a friendly tone. “I might,” he replies. I flip him my remaining $30, and keep moving. “Thanks,” he responds. I’ve had two beers and a glass of water, and spent $50. That’s not considered good money management by some, and yet it is. A few blocks later, I pick up a dime laying on the sidewalk. Pick up any money you find, regardless of which side is up. That’s more good money management.

Q: What is the generally accepted number of words per page for a
published novel? A: 250 words per page is generally considered to be standard.

The word total for this “trilogy,” is ~18,000 words, which is 72 pages. I’ve conceived, acted in, and then written a short story in about ten days, which instantly becomes a classic to anyone who reads it. Blacklisting this work of art, which is better than ANYTHING that will be nominated for any of the Pulitzer Prizes, is a crime against humanity. People need to know & discuss what I’ve written here, and to deprive them access to this, is to deprive them of the right to life & happiness. That won’t stand, man. This aggression will not stand.

This is the end of this story for most of you. This tapestry I’ve weaved really ties everything together. I’ll keep what happens here next, to myself and those I meet, unless there are some major outbreaks like another hurricane. The pen is mightier than the sword, and knowing when to put both down is crucial. For me, the Internet does it’s job from here. This was written to help myself, and help others around me figure their way out. It’s a survival manual, if you will, since the government isn’t handing out much that’s useful to people in need. I’ve explained everything I’ve needed to explain, and now it’s time for people to care and act on those impulses. That’s what leadership is. Now the first followers who become of primary importance. I’m signing off, until the next event calls. Side four “Reoccurring Dreams” blasting away… I’ll catch y’all down the trail. Until then, always remember the dude abides.

……….<><>><><><><><>……….