Monday, Monday

With this famous Mamas and the Papas’ song in my head, have the best of weeks. Here are a few random musings to start off the week.

The new sleight of hand approach being used by the US President on Russiagate is “It is his fault I cheated.” In essence, his predecessor chose not to make public the verified Russian meddling in the Presidential election due to the polarized political climate. While I understand his logic, I disagree with his silence. Yet, his choice does not alter the fact the newly elected President is at the very minimum an unwitting participant in the meddling and, as yet to be proven, a known colluder. Either way, he cheated, but that is consistent with his history.

Speaking of cheating, having clandestine discussions about health care reform does not give off the impression what you are doing is on the up and up. David Brooks, the conservative pundit, said on Friday that a key reason for the secrecy is there is no overriding mission to what is being done. Also, it could be construed as cheating to sabatoging the Affordable Care Act by not giving money promised to insurance companies to reimburse them for the initial adverse risk they took on. These actions harmed people as premiums went up even more and some companies left the market because they were stiffed.

The reason the “Black lives matter” movement started has been in evidence even more of late. Apparently, in terms of police shootings, they don’t. I would not want a police officer’s job as it is very dangerous. And, there are many, many fine officers. Yet, there have been too many actions taken that seem to fly in the face of reasonable use of force. Why must shots be taken? Why must so many shots be taken? Why must the shooter shoot to kill? When I see seven, twelve, sixteen shots are fired, I find that excessive. We must have honest review by all parties and better training. Too many Black men are dying and yes, their lives do matter.

These reflections turned quite sobering. I hope everyone stays safe and travels safely this week. And, don’t forget to hug your loved ones and tell them how you feel.




11 thoughts on “Monday, Monday

  1. Note to Readers: The President has now said his predecessor colluded with the Russians, of course without proof. Why do people believe anything this man says? Maybe he will tweet that it was actually Obama and not Trump who was inside the bus with Billy Bush talking about groping women.

  2. Last things first, sound and wise sentiments Keith, all we need now is more of the old 1960/70s greeting ‘Don’t be a stranger’.
    President Obama did try and ‘stay above’ the grubbiness a tad too much; sometimes you have to get your hands dirty.
    The issue of police over-reaction, if we could call it that, is one I feel as being systemic and not uncommon in public service, only in this case there are guns rather than words or lack of effective response to a public enquiry. My 40+ years in the UK equivalent of the IRS and Social Security taught me a great deal about (a) Under-staffing (b) Under-funding (c) Poor training (d) Top down pressure without addressing (a) to (c) (e) Unnecessary emphasis on the internal bureaucracy. Add to that the fact that every day you might get killed and you have a toxic mix. The public can help in a gently subversive way by not being suspicious or hostile, which in itself is not easy with the office in question is a being a ‘twit’ (family-friendly version)- I remember back in the 1960s when hippiness was starting off; this took place in New York, there was a mobile soup-kitchen handing out soup to hippies; a police officer approached, looking suspicious, one hippy turned to him with all civility and calmly asked ‘Would you like some soup officer?’; abashed the police officer said ‘No thanks. You’re ok,’ and walked off- all good. It’s not going to work every time, but we as a society have to start somewhere.
    Not helped by the lack of a President of The United States,

    • Roger, well said. It is so hard for me as a white msn to understand what a black man contends with in America. We can say be polite when encountering a law officer, but that is not enough. Malcolm Gladwell has a great piece in his book “Blink.” We all have a subconscious bias to act, good of bad, based on ecperiences. A police officer has to decide in a blinking of the eye on whether to act. As you note, training will help, but budgets restrict training. Yet, it is still needed. Great comment, Keith

  3. I sometimes wonder what it must be like to be a police officer; to be ‘on guard’ at all times, probably even when off duty if that training is instilled deep in the spirit of that person.. and to know that a split second can make all the difference in life and death… when looking at at images of the obama family on vacation, there was the bodyguard – always on guard…

    like you, i would not want that job.. to live with remorse that i reacted too late… or that i reacted too soon and cost an innocent person’s life….

    if all people were selfless and worked for the good of the fellow man, there would be no need for bodyguards or officers of ‘the law.’…..

    ah.. if wishes were horses….

    • Lisa, great comment from top to bottom. While you were typing this, I was reading and responding to Roger’s comment. Take a peek at the reference to Malcolm Gladwell’s “Blink,” which ties nicely into your comment. Thanks, as always. Keith

      • yes, that’s interesting that we were both focused on the same topic, directing our replies to the same comment box…. ‘blink…’ just a split-second to make a choice then have to live with that choice forever.

        the ‘blink’ book is at casa loca, and next week i’ll be moving out.. will be sure that book gets set on top of the others for future ops to read it again…

      • Lisa, Malcolm Gladwell’s perspective is unique. I have enjoyed each of his books for that reason. Happy reading again. Keith

  4. Very good, though sobering, post, Keith! Roger’s comment says a lot about the times we live in and the challenges faced, especially by police officers. I was pleased to see your comment that “Too many Black men are dying and yes, their lives do matter.” Given that so many of my friends are African-Americans who are fearful every time the get into their cars, or walk down the street, this is one that I take very seriously. And as to songs … the one that keeps popping into my head is Simon & Garfunkel’s Bridge Over Troubled Water. Gee, I wonder why?

  5. Dear Keith,
    There will be no support for the “Black Lives Matter” movement from the alt-right US Attorney General Jeff Sessions. I am convinced that better police training would save both the lives of Black victims and police officers. And certain types of peoples with obvious racist tendencies should not be hired and this attitude in the workplace should not be condoned.

    Hugs, Gronda

    • Agreed on all counts. Doing the right thing has been back seated in politics, especially in this administration where the goal is to placate a fervent base.

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