Clintonitis! Where is the cure?

Is there no cure?  Are we doomed to suffer chronically?

We regularly are treated to one reminder or another of the sordid history this family carries along with it, and yet this family floats unscathed above the various issues. The press seems to have forgotten what the definition of a ‘watchdog’ is and how they were conceived to fulfill that role for us mere citizens. We see more and more consolidation of newspaper entities all being rolled into the USA Today family which only promises a lesser-quality version of the print media than that to which we had become accustomed.

Most of us, if we will but step back and carefully review the facts, can actually come to our own conclusions but we seem to have become such lazy consumers of information that we are simply content to let someone else do our thinking for us.  That laziness is threatening to result in another 8 years of Clinton dominance.  Bill Clinton is anything but shy and retiring.  State department favors appear to have been casually sold by Hillary Clinton. The FBI Director somehow justified doing nothing other than scolding Hillary for her antics after the “investigation” even though we watched and heard and had all but concluded she was in deep ‘do-do’.

The Clinton Foundation appears to be nothing but a money manufacturing machine for the Clinton family.  The speech prices are astronomical.  The $3 Million ‘earned’ by Chelsea is just a bit much for most of us to swallow as justified and legitimate.  Where is the IRS when the need for an audit seems present?

The Clinton family members simply live/lived charmed lives.  Walk through the history beginning in Arkansas with the women crying out for justice, the Vince Foster episode, and the cattle future shenanigans that turned $10,000 into $100,000 in a few weeks in Hillary’s maiden voyage in that world. Continue that walk through the years with things like the Rose Law firm episode, leading up to now and there wasn’t much of a change. Corners were regularly trimmed, favors were regularly dispensed, millions upon millions of dollars were accumulated by this couple that literally started with nothing.  The “blue dress” episode was soon removed from memory. ‘Only in America’ seems to have been a phrase coined to cover the Clintons’ success in spite of the family history.

It is virtually inconceivable to think that this family is where it is without having received the largess and benevolence of many including prosecutors who managed not to find crime or to pursue convictions. Slaps on the wrist were even few are far between.  Maybe they skate because so many others are also involved.  There has to be some reason other than simply shoddy investigation and prosecution.

Clintonitis.  Maybe there simply is no cure.

 

 

The Petulant Quarterback…

Colin Kaepernick, the NFL 49er’s QB, continues to refuse to stand during the playing of the National Anthem at the start of NFL games.  Among other statements he’s made in this regard, he refers to ‘cops shooting people and then getting paid time-off’, etc.  He has also displayed his lack of understanding as to why we begin such events with the National Anthem.  If this is permitted to go unchecked without any punishment for him, we can expect to see all kinds of demonstrations by NFL players contrary to the instructions of their employers, the NFL teams.

Kaepernick has a following of fans and he could certainly work to arouse their passion on this subject when he is not on the playing field and when he is not disrespecting the country of which he is a citizen.

If the 49ers don’t handle this, the league may well intercede and it should.  The act of petulance may be okay if he does it on his own time (I even question that), but the start of the game isn’t his own time.  If he chooses to anger his fans, so be it.  Let him lose the share of sales of his jerseys, etc.  Let him ruin the value of his autograph. Let him lose his contract with the 49ers.

When this is permitted to occur at the beginning of an NFL game, Kaepernick places all the NFL teams, all the owners, all the officials and all the other players on the same stage whether or not they wish to be a party to his beliefs and this manner of making those beliefs known.

Frankly, this bothers me more than ‘inflate gate’ bothered me (that obviously had nothing to do with political issues perceived by some).  I disagree with Kaepernick’s belief and am not at all interested in his perspective when I tune in to watch a football game.  He is a quarterback and not someone to whom I turn for political opinion.  I could not care any less about his beliefs, especially when he has shared enough with me to help me understand that he is way off base and that his antics can be toxic to viewers who might believe him simply because he is a ‘star’.

 

Sheriff David A. Clarke, Jr. is the real deal…

We conservatives in Wisconsin, especially in S.E. Wisconsin have had the distinct pleasure of watching Sheriff David A. Clarke become more a national presence than simply a county or state presence since he took office by appointment in 2002.   He obviously has been re-elected at each opportunity since that appointment and runs as a Democrat given the political make-up of Milwaukee County.  That has to drive the liberal Democrats nuts since he is not the stereotypical Democrat.

Sheriff Clarke casts quite a shadow.  He infuriates people who seem to think that a black conservative is an anomaly that cannot be tolerated.  Those people have a tendency to be liberals and those liberals who are also black seem especially intolerant of Sheriff Clarke apparently since he has strayed from the ‘reservation’ they occupy and cherish.

I have mentioned a chance meeting of the Sheriff in Washington, D.C. some years ago and my impression that he was a very real, very caring, very comfortable-in-self human being who knew how to smile and exchange small talk with a fellow Wisconsinite even though one not able to cast a vote for him in Milwaukee County.

Since that chance meeting, I have followed the Sheriff closely.  I have to say that he has impressed me at every turn.  There is not a single episode in his tour of duty as the Sheriff that I had to cringe over as a fellow conservative.  Clarke is the genuine article and the nation is coming to understand that he is the real thing.  He is not a Sheriff Joe Arpaio imitation although it is tempting to think of him in that context; he is his own man.

Sheriff Clarke has developed a national presence especially among those of the conservative persuasion.  He has honed his speaking skills, he calls it as he sees it, and is a popular person for those bookings by national conservative groups.

In short, this guy is the real deal and you will hear more and more about him unless I miss my guess.  I have no idea if he has a plan, but it sure seems he is working a ‘plan’.  He is building on his national presence.  He is a very real and identifiable black conservative, and that has to drive some people nuts.  I do not have any inside information, but I’ll not be surprised to see this man running for statewide or national office in my lifetime.  He is 60 years old and I cannot believe he’ll be satisfied to stay as the Sheriff of Milwaukee County although that seems to be his if he wants it.  Whatever he decides to go for, I’ll be a supporter.

Martha Washington Had It Right…

Our nation’s first First Lady is quoted as having said:

The greater part of our happiness or misery depends upon our disposition, and not upon our circumstances.

That was true when she said it and it is just as true today.  Each of us has the gift of being able to rise above circumstances if we will but put that gift to use regularly.  We are given the choice of persevering or of permitting circumstances to derail our happiness.  The choice is ours.  Yes, it is a ‘mind game’ but that is a game only we can control.

I think of this as our two national political parties’ candidates go through the thrust and parry of everyday campaigning.  Most of us probably have a favorite person of the two who are in the race to the White House.  Anyone who has read my blogs knows the person who will gather my vote and the reasoning behind that decision.

That having been put behind, I find the day-to-day campaign efforts by the two candidates energizing, maddening, frustrating, smile-inducing, gut-wrenching, etc.  My choice and the other person both have the ability to make me cringe; the other person makes me cringe with her positions and her “I’m the obvious choice and you should put me in the White House” attitude.  My choice makes me cringe when he demonstrates that he is a political novice and that he is capable of great ideas but can step on the presentation of those great ideas given his occasional bombast.  But he is improving each day.

I do not wish time away, but I confess I will be pleased to see our national election day arrive.  I fear I may be quite disappointed in the choice made by the majority of us voters if the polls are anywhere near accurate, but that choice is sacrosanct in our country and that is fine.  Either way, I will have ample blog subjects available; that is simply the way this all works.

The President of the United States will be determined by the majority of our voting citizens.  I will either be happy with that decision or saddened, and puzzled, by that decision, but that will be the way it is for the next four years…or more.  I am not moved by the idea of the first woman president but I am not a woman.  If I were that might be different, but the women in my life don’t seem to see her sex as the driver behind committing to vote for her.

I do understand that Mr. Trump has some, maybe even quite a few, rough edges, but I believe him to be truthful in the vast majority of situations.  I cannot say that about his opponent who has made a career out of surviving one escapade after another alongside her husband.  I find no ‘hope’ in the couple from Hope, AR.

If Hillary Clinton emerges as the next President of the United States, I will find a way to live with that decision on the part of my fellow voters; I will question their collective wisdom, but I will live with it.  That makes our country great, and that isn’t a play on my favorite’s campaign theme.  Ours is a great country, a beacon of hope for many around this world who can only imagine having a real say in determining the leader of their own country.

And, I will look back at Martha Washington’s statement regularly and accept that I have the ability to determine my own disposition independent of whoever does or doesn’t make it to The Whitehouse.  But if it is Hillary, I need to have a real heart-to-heart talk with those who supported her.  Maybe they’ll be able to show me why I should’ve voted their way…but I wouldn’t put any money on that bet.

ObamaCare: Whistling in the Graveyard?

I am losing count of the articles I see published about Obamacare and rate increases with apologetic statements from people in the ObamaCare inner-sanctum telling us not to worry.  I have written before about the withdrawals by various insurers from states where they have already ‘lost their shirt’ in the ObamaCare marketplaces.  This is eerily similar to Alfred E. Neumann of Mad Magazine fame saying to us “What?  Me Worry?”.

A Bloomberg News article this morning by Zachary Tracer is yet another indication of ‘whistling in the graveyard’, in my less-than-humble opinion.  Kathryn Martin, Health and Human Services’ acting assistant secretary for planning and evaluation (how about that for a title that must wrap around to the backside of her business card?) says “Headline rate increases do not reflect what consumers actually pay.  Even in a scenario where all plans saw double-digit rate increases, the vast majority of consumers would continue to have affordable options”.

Ms. Martin conflates affordable options with U.S. subsidies of premiums by use of more taxpayer dollars and with those who have coverage needing to reduce their coverage by dropping to a less-costly version of ObamaCare with lower rates of coverage, potentially fewer physicians, shallower drug offerings, etc., etc.  She, by the way, enjoys the comfy Federal plan so ‘not to worry’.

These are the earmarks of the dreaded “death spiral” in insurance-speak where it simply becomes impossible to increase premiums rapidly enough to offset the increase in claims costs, eventually forcing the plan sponsor to withdraw the plan from the marketplace. For-profit insurers react more quickly than does government when these signs are exhibited.  We have already witnessed this in the world of Obamacare where insurers have left the mix.

This is not a new phenomenon in the world of health insurance.  Just because this is a government-run package of programs doesn’t mean that reality can be suspended.  Even Uncle Sam, using our money, will run out of funds, service cuts, etc. to stave off this impending failure.  President Obama has been quite proud that we’ve re-named these programs  after him.  Reality has been successfully suspended for a few years by using the tricks that have been employed by insurers who find themselves in a bad place in the health insurance world.  In the end, these types of charades end in flames, and that will be especially problematic for government-run plans since politicians will have had their hands all over the corpse making an effective autopsy finding a virtual impossibility.

Some politicians will be issuing “I told you so” press releases.  Other politicians will be issuing fabricated denials of culpability for the mess blaming the ‘other party’.  Former President Obama will be someplace playing golf with nary a care in the world.  Real people will be suffering.  And, unfortunately, gullible voters will be placing blame on the other political party just as they always do, even though there will be facts available with which reasoned judgements and proper assignment of blame could be accomplished.

I still remember the 2AM (or thereabouts) vote where Democrats rammed this plan through and how they posed proudly for holy pictures at the end of this process.  Most had no real working knowledge of the plan nor of this whole world of health care and insurance. That worked out well, don’t you think?  Wonder if we’ll see those pictures ever again at the rate this mess is unfolding?

Hillary’s Quid Pro Quo Game…

Quid pro quo is defined as a favor or advantage granted or expected in return for something.  

This is not what you’d expect from a Secretary of State, but where Hillary Clinton has involvement, there is money to be made in  one fashion or another and the likelihood that any will be left on the table appears to be remote.

The Clinton Foundation has been receiving significant ‘contributions’ from foreign powers.  Hillary Clinton is in probably the second most powerful position in government as Secretary of State when it comes to providing favorable decisions to foreign entities in return for ‘contributions’.

These kinds of happenings help us to see how  the personal server in use was readily available for shenanigans, for the delivery of a list of needs from a foreign entity that can be fulfilled by the Secretary of State.  If there was to be this kind of traffic by e-mail, it only stands to reason there needed to be some way to protect the secrets from public disclosure.  Use of a personal rather than government server would certainly fill the bill for that need.

This is certainly not something you’d condone in a prospective candidate for the highest office in our land, that of the President of the United States.  But that is exactly where we find ourselves at this moment.  The Clinton Foundation has taken in huge amounts of money from sources that could be seeking favorable government rulings in one form or another.  Those rulings would certainly be ones which could flow through the State Department.  Another term for such happenings might be “pay for play”.

When you go further to look at the records of the Clinton Foundation, you find that compensation and expense reimbursement made to family members and key staff amount to some 80% of disbursements while grants amount to just some 20% of the total outflow.  One would think that the ideal would be something just the reverse of this.  If 20% of the expense went to operate the Foundation and 80% went to the charitable side of the operation, that would seem reasonable.  Bill and Hillary’s daughter earned some $3,000,000 last year for her role in this Foundation.

We also see in print this morning that more than half the people who met with Hillary Clinton while she was Secretary of State gave money, personally or through companies or groups, to this same Clinton Foundation.  If you didn’t know better this might appear to be some grand scheme to extract money in return for favorable decisions on matters of interest to those people or companies or countries.

A polite term to describe these occurrences might be “an intersection of interests”.  A less polite term might be that mentioned above: “pay for play”.  Or maybe we should just label it plain old “money laundering”.

Can you even begin to imagine how much the Clinton Foundation could take in with Hillary sitting in the Oval Office if she chose to continue to operate in the manner we’ve seen in the recent past?  This seems unimaginable, but it is something about which we need be concerned based on the evidence readily available to us.  If the press can dig up this kind of information, what has the FBI been doing?  Might FBI Director James Comey want to go back and review the files again?  It seems almost incomprehensible that there was not something of an incriminating nature to be found somewhere; or have the Clintons simply proved they are masters of the slight of hand necessary to pull this off without detection?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Just Another 15,000 Or So; No Biggy

Hillary Clinton has outdone herself, and that takes some doing!  Another 15,000 e-mails were released to add to the 30,000 or so already released.  We’re up to 45,000 +/- now but not to worry.

Hillary Clinton has a sordid history of lies, half-truths, hiding documents, using private servers to assure she leaves no trail and generally bending the law to suit her wants and needs.  Yet, she and her minions urge us all to dump Trump into the nearest waste receptacle and hang in there with her.

There may not be that easily discernable hands down pick of a candidate for President this year, but there is easily one if we eliminate the worst of the two.  Hillary Clinton and her entourage of ‘people’ continue to astound with their brazen ‘ignorance’ of the law, and by doing so in the light of day.  Hillary Clinton makes Donald Trump look like a Boy Scout, with no offense to Boy Scouts intended!

How many classified items are there to this batch of 15,000?  Where were these?  She had, after all, assured us over and again that the 30,000 e-mails released were it.  There weren’t any more e-mails.  And now, 50% again as many were ‘found’…or were they finally sufficiently scrubbed so as to contain nothing too incriminating and thus were now releasable?

Were this you or me, we’d be in leg irons and straining to see out our prison cell window. But not Hillary.  She must have some juicy secrets on some high-level people to be able to skate on ice this thin time and time again.  The press seems to have found it possible to make little to nothing of this judging from what appears in my morning newspaper today.

Democrats have had a lot of fun pointing their fingers at Republicans chiding them for their candidate.  Donald Trump and his deals do not even come close to Hillary’s epic history of dealing quick and dirty.  And don’t forget the Clinton Foundation!  If there is not something prosecutable in this array of evidence, there will never be another federal prosecution again.  We can just as well disband the FBI for all the good it has been in this situation.

Can you imagine you or me being half this sleazy and not being pilloried for our doings? Certainly not, and we’d deserve it every bit as much as Hillary AND Bill AND Chelsea AND Umma deserve that kind of scrutiny today.  Can you even imagine what the rest of the world’s countries will think if we vote these two people into the White House…one for a second try at the gold ring as First Gent?

This would be such great farce if it weren’t so terribly, terribly denigrating to our country and to us as citizens of this country.  We ought to be ashamed this has been permitted to percolate for so long as it has without an ADULT somewhere stepping up and calling a ‘time out’.  Maybe someone like our President?  Or our Attorney General?

Donald Trump is looking more and more like a choir boy!