A few more Sunday sermonettes

Happy Sunday. No, I won’t be preaching this morning, but I will be trying my best to speak a few truths.

It easy to blame someone else or some other entity for your troubles. The European Union is not perfect, but has helped many countries through hard times. When they are helpful, country leaders pat themselves on the back. When times are tough, it is nice to have a scapegoat. Relationships are hard work, but countries need to think hard if they want a divorce from the EU before they have the “what do we do now moment?”

Speaking of relationships, the man in the White House tends to have transactional ones. A pundit said he counts few friends saying he touts a “me against the world” mindset. If he keeps on ticking off our allies, this description will be very apt. Unfortunately he will drag the US down with him.

Two of the worst terms in America are RINO and DINO. They mean Republican (or Democrat) in Name Only. They are used by tribal party members as an insult to someone who is not towing the party line. As an unaffiliated voter who has been a member of both parties, I find these labels offensive. We pledge allegiance to the country, not some party. If someone uses this term, do yourself a favor and pay attention to what the target of their labeling is saying. It likely has more veracity than the claimant’s argument.

The United Nations came out with a report Friday defining how Trump’s policies are detrimental to the poor in America. America has a poverty problem that predates Trump. Too many are living paycheck to paycheck and some are even beneath that. This President and Congress’ solution is to give a huge tax break to wealthy people and companies. And, if the repeal of the Affordable Care Act went through, it would have been even worse. America has fallen in the global ranks on upward socio-economic mobility. It matters more to whom you were born than merit in getting ahead.

On a positive note, Costco raised its minimum wage from $13 to $14 an hour and Walmart increased theirs from $9 to $11 an hour. And more states and cities are making planned and new increases. These are steps in the right direction. It would have been nice for Congress to have increased the minimum wage along with the tax decrease which impacts corporations annually. It would have helped pay for some of the lost tax revenue if companies had to increase pay for those in greatest need, plus this money would be spent as they need it more than the 1% group.

Thanks for letting me preach. Any Amens or rebuttals? Other truisms?

26 thoughts on “A few more Sunday sermonettes

  1. Note to Readers: I started to add this, so will do so as an addendum. Kudos to the Starbucks leadership for being accountable for a mistake and conducting race relations training. Accountability is one of the missing traits in the White House leadership.

  2. Good observations, Keith! And, did I hear you ask for ‘Amens of rebuttals’? Ah, you know you just placed the ol’ soapbox in front of this sleepless night owl, right?

    I am offended that Trump treats our friends/allies worse than he treats the likes of Putin, Erdogan, and worst yet, Duterte. He does NOT speak for me in the way he has treated the EU/UK/Canada/Mexico. In truth, he represents a minority of U.S. citizens at this point … a loudly obnoxiouis minority, but nonetheless, a minority.

    Trump himself has NO friends on a personal level. Friendship is always based on mutual respect and trust. Trust? Who could trust a man who doesn’t even recognize the truth, for it has been a stranger to him for many years … perhaps most of his life. So … those who claim to be his friends are merely in the relationship for what they can get from him. Sad, isn’t it, to think that he has never known what a true friendship is.

    You are so right about RINO and DINO. They are ridiculous, for loyalty is to finding the best candidate for the job, the one who will follow his/her conscience and act in accordance with the good of the nation, and not blind loyalty to a party, especially a party that has gone so far off track as to be virtually unrecognizable to the members of the party, say, 10-20 years ago. I was not a fan of Reagan, but gave the man credit for doing some things right. Compared to today’s GOP, Reagan was almost a saint! When ‘party loyalty’ takes precedence over the good of the nation and its people … “Houston, we’ve got a problem”.

    About that poverty problem … one word … well, three actually … capitalism run amok. I understand and to an extent support the theory of capitalism. But when those who own the resources forget to share, or become too greedy to share, then it no longer benefits the nation. Trickle down economics? HAH! Biggest joke since the knock-knock was invented. Capitalism at this moment in the U.S. is geared strictly toward the less-than-one-percent, and they are fighting against paying taxes to help the poorest 20% or so stay alive? The jobs numbers that Trump bragged about have no meaning, for between the domestic economics and the effect that his tariffs will have in the coming months, those numbers are both meaningless and unsustainable.

    Hats off to Costco and even my nemesis Wally World for raising their wage rates. It will be up to the individual companies and the states, for the foreseeable future to see that workers are treated fairly. The problem with that? New York and California will lead the parade, but Mississippi, Alabama, Louisiana and many others will be too lazy to even put their shoes on and join the parade.

    Thanks for the thought-provoking post, and for allowing this ol’ woman to ramble at … WHAT??? 5:00 a.m.??? Okay … enough from me … going to bed now. 😴

    • Jill, many thanks for your thoughts and seeing a typo to be fixed. There is an article about Former Speaker John Boehner who says “there is no Republican Party.” More Republicans have to openly criticize what this man is doing and how he is doing it. I hope Fox and other conservative news outlet are covering the world’s reaction to this man. Keith

      • I have heard a number of republicans bemoan that there is no republican party anymore. It certainly has a different set of values today than it had 30 years ago. But what are they doing to change things? Nothing, that I can see.

      • Jill, I look to the more reasonable Republican voices who have and are decrying what this man has done and is doing to our country. When George Will becomes an Independent, that is telling.

        I also don’t see all the good things he is doing, as some Republicans say is the reason for ignoring his bullying and lying. While he should get credit for reducing the corporate tax rate some, that law went way to far and we are borrowing from our future. While some regulation reduction is good, we cannot allow companies to cheat and pee in our swimming pool more easily. Then there is trade, tariffs, demeaning our position. Each of these decisions paint a worse future for America. Keith

  3. I think all our systems are far from being perfect and I like what you wrote here about the “What do we do now” moment. I still believe that no matter how imperfect a uniting system is it still is better than any system that separates.

  4. I find it interesting that the latest economic report looks so rosy, despite some states/cities and corporations upping their minimum wage scales. Maybe we don’t need Congress afterall. Maybe we need to keep focusing on personal responsibility and kindness.

    • Linda, truth be told Presidents and Congress get too much credit and blame for the economy. They do provide some headwinds or tailwinds. We are in the second longest economic growth period ever at 107 consecutive months – Trump has only been President for just shy of 17 months.

      To his credit, Trump has reduced some regs, but has gone too far on others. The tax law borrows from our future to add a little bit more to the growth. Yet, he was handed the reins on a pretty good economy.

      Keith

      • Linda, it is not just the tariffs on allies which are a horrible decision, it is the chaos and repudiation of relationships. It is surprising more Republicans are not stepping up. This is a reckless President. Keith

      • Indeed. And, as you point out, it is not really the power he wields so recklessly, but the tone he brings to such a hallowed office. I hope that doesn’t have lasting implications about how to solve problems.

  5. I’m simply going with ‘Amen’…
    No. On second thoughts I will add, how long before the word ‘Trump’ goes from being an exclamation from its association with card games to a derogatory term, well for obvious reasons.

      • The leadership in both China and Russia cannot believe their good fortune.
        I have this ongoing image of Putin going everyday to an Orthodox Church and in all sincerity giving up a prayer of thanks.

      • Roger, Putin could not have created a better asset. Xi has a long term plan and patience to execute it. Trump is not known for planning or patience. Keith

  6. Dear Keith.

    The president was blessed with a great economy that he is screwing with, and in the process, he is making some real enemies of some republicans in the US Congress. This doesn’t sound like a big deal but it is. As soon as that base starts defecting, they’ll turn on him like angry bears.

    This is why I don’t get why he is fooling around with these tariffs with our allies and neighbors. This could turn the economy southward where he will lose favor-ability.

    When and if the economy goes through a cyclical correction, he’ll pay a price.

    I can’t help but think, he is lashing out without real consideration of the negative consequences of his actions.

    Hugs, Gronda

    • Gronda, penalizing allies is about as poor a decision. Going after China with a plan is one thing, but he has been outmaneuver. Yet, tariffs on allies is unwise. When his chaotic flip flopping is thrown with his lying and bullying, he makes someone that few leaders trust or want to deal with. Keith

  7. Note to Readers: We should remember June 4 as May 35 today. After the Tianneman Square massacre where the Chinese government forcibly put down a protest in 1989, all references to June 4 were eliminated from web searches in China. To get around this, the tragedy is known as May 35. If you ask the younger people in China about this, they won’t know. Keith

  8. Note to Readers: Speaker Paul Ryan came out today in support of Congressman Trey Gowdy who has been under fire by Donald Trump sycophants. Gowdy said he supported the FBI on their investigation into converse over Russian contacts with the Trump campaign. More Republicans need to remember their oath and support Gowdy. Ryan also noted that Trump should not pardon himself as no one is above the law. Amen.

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