Posted in Life and Encouragement, Political Mishaguyas

Thoughts and reflections on Superbowl 51

I just finished watching Superbowl 51. WOW what an amazing game.  As I watched, I realized just how much this “American Football” game reflects our country and what’s going on here and through the world…but especially here.

First off, I want to start in the middle. I found it both humorous and appropriate that Lady Gaga (whom some say is crazy) is/was the half time entertainment was “51/50.”  I joke, (hoping everyone knows that 51/50 is a term used for locking up a crazy person) but I’m serious at the same time.  Honestly, I loved the show.  I’m not a big Lady Gaga fan, but the effects blew me away (my creative juices are flowing) and the message of hope in her music and performance lifted and inspired me as well.

On a similar note, the commercials held a similar theme to Lady Gaga’s message and what I hear from those around me: “We are all equal (or should be.) Take care of those who are down and lift them up.  Celebrate and embrace the differences, don’t use them to ‘divide and conquer.’”  Most of the commercials and music sought healing, peace, and unity.  This brings me to the game.

Who or what are the “Patriots?” (aside from being a football team)  “Patriots” are people who fight for and support their country.  They fight against anyone or anything that comes against their country and give their all to support, defend and protect it.

Who/what are “Falcons?” A Falcon is a sleek, predatory bird.  Though elegant, strong, and beautiful, they seek only to devour for their own, personal (including their offspring) gain, or edification.

“The Patriots” VS “The Falcons.” Does this not reflect our country right now? “The working man” vs “Corporate Elite?”  “The 99%” VS “The 1%?”  For the first time ever, the game went into overtime.  It started out with the “Falcons” swooping down and attacking and flying around and through the Patriots.  They quickly gained a HUGE lead over the lowly Patriots.  At the beginning of the 4th quarter, it looked hopeless!  The Falcons had 28 points to the Patriots 3 points.  It was over.  No hope for Patriot fans…..or was it.  (Does this not sound like America, today?)

Then, in an unexpected comeback, the Patriots pounded the Falcons. The score was soon tied.   Now (again, for the first time in 51 years) the game goes into overtime.  This is “sudden death,” the first team to score will win the game and take all the winnings.  The Patriots pushed with all they had…it’s win or die…and they WON!

This is where we are headed. Yes, there are dark days ahead, and it will get darker, believe me.  This game, I think, is (for lack of a better word) a prophetic word of encouragement for us all:  as things get darker, keep up the good fight…stick together…..lift each other up….fight oppression…celebrate the differences and use them to strengthen the group.  Like the Patriots of Superbowl 51, we will be victorious in the end.  Fight the good fight, and never lose hope.

…and that’s no mishaguyas.

 

Posted in Life and Encouragement, Political Mishaguyas

Heal the hurt….don’t hurt the healing.

“Heal the hurt….don’t hurt the healing.” -K.T. Klay

Sorry, All, but I’m tired of the hate. I don’t want to read any more negative posts. I’ve had enough of Hillary and Donald and Bernie and Elections and Government. I’m not going to “unfriend” anyone because I’m a grown-up and I realize that we are all entitled to our own views and opinions.

I get regular Facebook status updates from many of my friends. Some of them I’ll look at but others I pick and choose. There are some people who I don’t get updates for/from because I got tired of hate-filled posts.  I want to get along with everyone, and I cannot tell you what to post or share, however…for some of you, almost all your posts and emails are filled with hate and fear and links to articles or memes that attack our former presidential candidates.

I grieve for what this country has gone through, is going through, and will go through….but grief must end….fear must end….hate must end.

I choose to love.

I choose to be inclusive.

I choose to focus on everything that is good.

I choose to focus on everything that is uplifting and positive.

I choose to focus on happy things.

I choose to focus on our similarities and strengths and being at peace with everyone.

I choose to be the change I want to see.

I am (as anyone who knows me knows) a man who works really hard to be a man of integrity and a man who keeps my word. Those of you who want to continue being negative and full of fear and hate, you may continue, but I will turn off your status updates. I do it for my own sanity and healing and to begin to bring the healing and change I want to see, and focus on the good. I encourage you all to do the same.

“Heal the hurt! Don’t hurt the healing.” Please tell me and others good things, show us people (not political officials) who are doing good things and bringing unity and healing.

My second wife told me that I sat bolt-upright in bed one night (yes, I was asleep) looked her in the eye and said in an exasperated and imploring tone, “CAN’T we be FRIENDS?!?!” Then I flopped over still asleep. BTW: She told me her reply had been “NO! We’re married.”

My friends, we are friends…let’s keep it that way.

I love you all.

…and that’s no mishaguyas.

Posted in Crazy Mishaguyas, Political Mishaguyas

Why I think Bernie Madoff would make a better President than Donald Trump

I feel that Bernie Madoff would make a better President of the United States than Donald Trump. Both of these gentlemen (I use that term loosely) have made a living off the backs of the “working-class” people, flinging themselves boldly into business endeavors, keeping themselves in the public eye, and showing blatant disregard for everyone but themselves, Bernie Madoff rises to the top for a variety of reasons. Now I know what you are thinking, “Trump is running against Bernie Sanders, not Bernie Madoff, fool!”  You, of course, are correct in that.  I am not comparing Sanders and Trump; I am comparing Trump and Madoff.  Bernie Sanders is a much better choice for President than Trump or Madoff, in my view, but that is not the point of my paper. Both Trump and Madoff have similar backgrounds and origins.  Both were born in Queens, New York [1][2]. Both started companies, The Trump Organization (1971) and Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities LLC (1960) with little or no money down. Both made fortunes off the backs of “working-class” people. When I say “working-class,” I include everyone making less than $200,000 per year, and all retirees.  What makes them different?

The first thing that makes these two different is how they started their companies, and continued to “earn” their money. Bernie Madoff started Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities LLC in 1960 with $5000 that he earned from working as a lifeguard and a sprinkler installer [4]. He put his company on the stock market as a penny stock and borrowed $50,000 from his father-in-law.  Trump was handed control of his father’s company, and used tax breaks and loop-holes to build his empire.  Trump also borrowed money and invested it. Unlike Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities LLC, The Trump Organization, almost went under during bankruptcy proceedings in 1991[5].

The Second thing that is different is how they work with others and own up to their mistakes. Trump blames others for problems.  Trump is the victim.  Trump has assets tied up so they can’t be taken. Madoff accepted responsibility for his mistakes, and admitted them.  He allowed his possessions and assets to be sold so people could be repaid.

The third thing that makes them different is how they live (or lived lived) their lives every day. Trump, who is worth between $3 billion and $10 billion[6][7][8], lives in opulent luxury.  Madoff, worth an estimated $17 billion[9] at the time of arrest) lived in an upscale and expensive area of town[10], but at the lower end and understated area with minimal possessions.  Madoff tried to stay out of the public view while Trump stays in the public eye.  Trump has had his own reality show, in addition to his current bid for President.

In closing, I feel that Bernie Madoff, despite his being jail would make a better president than Donald Trump, because he made more money in his public life than Trump has. Madoff made his initial money by working for it, while Trump has been handed it and or stolen and used loop-holes in the law to gain wealth. Bernie Madoff lived lived a low-key lifestyle against Trumps opulent “in-your-face” one. Finally, when “caught” in wrong doing, Madoff admitted his faults, while Trump has passed the blame to others.  For these reasons, I feel Madoff would be a better president than Trump.

Works Cited:

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Donald_Trump

[2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bernard_Madoff

[3] Trump, Donald; Bill Zanker (2007). Think Big and Kick Ass in Business and in Life. HarperCollins. pp. 79, 123, 211. ISBN 9780061547836. Retrieved July 15, 2012.

[4] Foley, Stephen. “The Madoff Files: Bernie’s Billions.” Independent. N.p., 28 Jan. 2009. Web. Retrieved 1 Mar. 2016.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/analysis-and-features/the-madoff-files-bernies-billions-1518939.html

[5] http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,972889,00.html

[6] Costa, Robert, and Maria Gold. “Donald Trump Will Declare $9 Billion in Assets as He Reveals 2016 Plans.” https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/exclusive-trump-will-declare-9-billion-net-worth-as-he-reveals-2016-plans/2015/06/15/a00e74c0-137c-11e5-9ddc-e3353542100c_story.html. The Washington Post, 15 June 2015. Web. Retrieved 1 Mar. 2016. 1 Mar. 2016.

[7] “Donald Trump”. Forbes. September 30, 2014 Retrieved 1 Mar. 2016.

[8] Melby, Caleb; Rubin, Richard (July 28, 2015). “Here’s Our Tally of Donald Trump’s Wealth”. Bloomberg. Retrieved 1 Mar. 2016.

[9] “Madoff Pleads Guilty, Is Jailed for $65 Billion Fraud.” http://www.reuters.com. N.p., 13 Mar. 2009. Web. Retrieved 1 Mar. 2016.

[10] Creswell, Julie (January 24, 2009). “The Talented Mr. Madoff”. The New York Times.