A new post from my "Truth Be Told" column in Will Robert's Weekly Telegram about Bowe Bergdahl. This is an amazing circus act to watch these days, politics that is.
Truth Be Told: B.B. Comes Home
In a surprising and super secret move, so secret Congress didn't know about it, Obama does a Five-For-One swap. I guess it's one way to get rid of some enemy combatants from Guantanamo Bay. The President promised he would close it, now all he needs is some more Americans to be held hostage and he get rid of some more. This may have been a bad move politically, but it will not hurt Obama. I could be wrong, but it seems nothing hurts this President or his reputation. Even when he's so transparently wrong it's plain to everyone, he is and will not be held accountable for anything. It's the Republicans, George Bush or Donald Duck's fault. How dare you say this man can make a mistake? The only mistake he can make is not going far enough to the left with his policies or programs. They can criticize their own, but no one else is allowed.
Now back to Bowe, the wayward soldier. It is becoming more and more clear that he wandered away from camp, after becoming disillusioned with the mission, and fell into enemy hands somehow. It's also being reported that lives were lost looking for this man, which is shameful. Those dead men, their blood is on Bergdahl's hands if any of this is true. I'll repeat it, if this soldier did indeed desert his post and men died looking for him, that is his fault. I don't care where you stand on this issue, if you can't admit this is the case, then you're a traitor to the truth.
I was always in support of getting Bergdahl back. I feel if a soldier is captured or leaves on his own, he is still property of The U.S. Government and should be retrieved. I heard people saying, "He's a traitor, leave him there", and that to me is unacceptable. Let's get him back and get the full story, then call him what he is. We really look weak as a nation when we leave our people in enemy hands for five years, let them desert or let them seek refuge in foreign countries after they have broken our laws. I believe this to be true, no matter who is the President.
I'm glad he's back either way. We will now get the full story hopefully. We at least have a better chance at it now that B.B. is in our hands rather than theirs. I don't agree with the way it was done, but there's nothing to be done about it, Obama will do as he pleases. Gone are the days we send in some elite troops to get our people and make the enemy look stupid, I'm guessing. When Reagan traded arms for hostages he got raked over the coals and still does about it. Obama is the first black president and he's cool, so no problem man!!
Truth Be Told: Bowe Bergdahl may be home, but he may not be free!!
It's been a while because Will Roberts Weekly Telegram has been down. I have also posted 2 articles in the online magazine "No Strings Attached-E News". They are also posting my web series "BTS On The Road" which follows my life as a comedian on the road. BIG ANNOUCEMENT: I'm going to JAPAN to perform for the troops in JUNE!! More info soon. Take care folks!!
Truth Be Told: V.A., Snowden & Benghazi, Oh My!!!
Truth Be Told: V.A., Snowden, Benghazi, Oh My!!!
First let's all take a deep breath and pretend we have no allegiance to either side of the political spectrum. For those on the right, hold back the temptation to shout "SEE!!! HE LIES,HE COVERS UP, HE PASSES THE BUCK!!!", relax for a few minutes. For those of you on the left, oh boy, try not to be the mind numbed robots that scream "IT"S GEORGE BUSH'S FAULT" or "RACIST" at anyone who does not see eye to eye with the President. I want everyone to take out their common sense, brush it off and use it for a change.
First Snowden. He leaked some very, very damaging information about the information gatherers, then fled to a country who once almost had a monopoly on information gathering. Then, the President said that Russia should had over Snowden or they would, umm, be, uh... regretful? No, he would say bad things about Putin. No, maybe said he would sanction the parliament. Shoot, what did happen? AHHH, yes, nothing happened, now I remember. Great leadership folks. If you can't see this was a dismal failure in foreign policy and still is every day this guy sits in Moscow or where ever he is, then take the sheep wool out of your eyes!!
Then there's that pesky little Benghazi cover-up that went sideways. Four Americans died including an Ambassador, but that doesn't matter. What matters is the integrity and legacy of the administration, especially the President's and any high ranking Democrat running for the Presidency nest. You say, "Brian you not looking at it objectively", I say "B.S.". Here's a simple question for those of you in wool. Why were told when this thing first happened that it was because of a riot about a film disgracing Islam that was released at least 6 months prior to the event? Don't tell me that's what the intelligence reported because that's a lie. Let's go another step further, why would the highest levels of government use this lie as an official announcement even hours or days after they knew it was a lie? The big question is WHO? Who determined that this would be the story to run with in the hopes the truth would not get out? We know why, it was close to an election cycle. You can say again that I'm not objective, but once again you would be a liar because these are facts and facts can't be on one side or the other.
Lastly the V.A. situation. Basically it's a shame and it reflects poorly on all of us. I have heard horror stories about the V.A. for years. I have not used it's services, I am a veteran, and I'm not sure I would if I can help it. I blame both parties and all leadership for many years now! They know damn well what's going on and if they don't, that's the biggest disgrace of all. You want to see socialized health care in it's near complete form, well here you go. Are you telling me our leadership is and has been so inept they don't know what's going on with the people with who lay down there lives for this country? You want to use this to point you hooves at each other? Shameful, just shameful. What gets me about Obama is he says he's 'Going to be mad" if these allegations are true. That people are going to be held responsible, yeah! How low have we sunk, how low are our standards now? He should be mad NOW, that this could even be suggested. People should have already been dismissed and any cover-up should be punished to the full. This is the worst, the bottom of the barrel and makes me sick. If we don't quit voting for people just because we think they're cool, or attractive, or "progressive" or some other new buzz word with great bumper stickers, this is the kind of crap we will deal with again.
Truth Be Told: It's time to pay attention to the man behind the curtain!!!
I find it hard to believe that people are actually on the side of the BLM on this one. Even if Mr. Bundy should be paying a grazing fee, which by common law standards it is questionable, the way this is being taken care of is atrocious!!
Truth Be Told: Turtles VS. Ranchers, How The West Was Lost!!
The last line of my previous post "Truth Be Told :The Bank of America Looses $800 Million and so does it's Customers!" was " Who's going to protect us from the protectors?!" I thought of that line as I kept hearing more and more about the situation between Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy and The U.S. Bureau of Land Management.
It seems it all started 20 years ago when the BLM changed the rules in the middle of the game (that they were decades late joining in on) and Bundy refused to pay his "Grazing Fees" because he felt the changes infringed on states rights. The changes were made by the BLM to protect an endangered desert turtle. How the hell does forcing someone to pay money for grazing their cattle on land that their family has been grazing since 1877 help save turtles? Telling them NOT TO GRAZE there seems to be the common sense thing to do, but that's not how our government operates. It's about MONEY, not the turtles! It's about POWER, not the environment.
The Governor of Nevada, Brian Sandavol, does not like the way the BLM is confining protesters to "First Amendment" areas where they're allowed to protest. Also, if the animal rights people who pushed for this rule change were really serious about their convictions, wouldn't they be alarmed by the reports of cattle being killed just to get rid of them? If I do not hear of any animal rights groups questioning the treatment of these cattle, I will NEVER take any of them seriously again and will remind anyone of this event anytime they try to shove their " I Love Animals and You Don't" ideology down my throat! We do need to protect the endangered species of the planet, but it's time for common sense solutions instead of alarmist reactions!
These animal rights groups and our government could care less about this family's way of life! They are pigs without honor in this instance! If you do not believe this man is being treated wrongly, then why the hell should you believe in FREEDOM? There could not have been another solution to this? Whoops, turtles are dying, you got to pay the BLM money now! No meeting of the minds, no getting the BLM, Animal experts and the rancher together to find a solution that does not include just paying a damn fee? Why does it always come down to paying our growing government money and the citizen, a cattle rancher in the instance, getting screwed? Why? I'll tell you why, because we let it!! WE ALLOW THIS CRAP! Oh, he supplies meat, he's evil, this turtle must be saved! We listen to these idiots without saying "No, your wrong and you will always be wrong!".
I really don't think this is a Liberal/Conservative issue. I think it's a Patriot/Traitor issue, yes I wrote "Traitor". There are people in our government and in our citizenry who are traitors to the values this country was founded on. Our forefather's believed that men were endowed with inalienable rights by our creator. I heard Obama state that finally the government recognized that Health Care was a right of every citizen, a right mandated by our government. That's not true and our government was never supposed to dole out rights on a whim, but to protect rights. Whose right is our government protecting out in Nevada? Their own, I believe. We'll see what happens, I hope it ends well but hope is a fragile thing these days.
Truth Be Told: Our Government is kind of like a turtle, it's slow but once it bites you, it doesn't let go!!!
Another post for the Weekly Telegram. Usually I do one a week, then post it here. This time I was so angry, I posted this as soon as I wrote it. I think we really need to look beneath the surface a lot more as a country. It is OUR responsibility to make sure we are governed properly!!
Truth Be Told: Bank Of America Looses $800 Million and so does it's customers.
Here's a quote straight out of one of the reports from Fox Business on this story. If you can't tell what's wrong with this picture, I will enlighten you.
) is reportedly in talks with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to settle an investigation into the banking giant's credit card add-on products for at least $800 million.
A settlement would represent the newly-created agency's fifth settlement with a credit-card provider over add-on products like identify-theft protection and debt cancellation."
Got it yet? Let's go over this. The government starts yet another agency, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, because there's just not enough government agencies. No other agency could have handled what ever the hell this one is doing, they could not have just added some personnel and a couple of more desks, they needed another AGENCY!! That's my first problem here. This is one of those things a President or Congressman proposes to add something to their legacy. " Oh yeah, I started that Bureau and we've taken it to those bad ole banks!!! Yes, sir!!". I'm sorry, but growing government with another such Bureau is good only about 2% of the time.
" But Mr. Shirley, they socked it to the Bank of America, that's damn good!!" you may be thinking. Let me first say that I just opened a savings account with said bank and I don't want them pushing me into protection or extras that I don't need. I do believe the government should make sure these things don't happen, but there's already agencies and bureaus that can handle such things. More bureaus means more man power, more investigations as they have to justify their existence, more paper work, more money needed to fund these.....
There's what I was coming to, the MONEY!! $800 MILLION DOLLARS and this is the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's (What a BS name) FIFTH settlement!! Well, they sure are well funded if you ask me. They should not need ANY taxpayer money for about 100 years. Let's look at that $800 million, where does it come from? The Bank of America will be giving to the CFoB the money from where? That's right, the money they have made from their customers. So this government Bureau protects us by finding a wrong doing by the bank, then hitting the bank with a heavy fine and then the bank will find a way to offset the fine by getting it from the customers some how. Our fees will be raised or the minimum requirement for a free checking/savings account will go up, etc. , etc...
How come the customers whom the bank perpetrated these extra protections upon don't get a piece of the $800 million? That would be protection I can believe in!! That would be true justice from an upstanding government agency that puts it's money where it's citizens are! But, NOOOO, they will celebrate this victory in the CFoB and at the end of the year they will party down! There will be a big banquet in a swanky hotel with award plaques, a catered buffet, open bar and a service staff of Bank of America employees. I'm outraged all the way around and I'm not sure why more people aren't.
Actually, I have a good idea why there's no outrage. People want the government to do everything for them and when a Bureau from the government, especially a new created one, hits a bank with a disciplinary action like this, folks only see the bad old bank not the Bureau taking the cold hard cash. We get ripped off either way!!
Truth Be Told: Whose going to protect us from the protectors?!!
Continuing with my theme from last week because I believe it's important!! Also, The BTS Radio Show turn celebrates it's 1 year anniversary this week, coincidental to this post, I did not plan it this way. The Web TV show "Comics On Parole" acknowledged the anniversary and I must day that it's a testimony to my recent posts. If we support each other, we can accomplish what we set out to do and even more!!
Celebrating The Little Things!!
I have a saying from one of my comedy books that goes " Learn to appreciate the little things in life and maybe your wife will too." and although it's a joke, I thinks it's funny because it's true.
In last week's column I talked about the rich getting richer and the mindset of us folks who want to succeed. Let me say first that it's not all about money, success, that is. My mindset has evolved and I'm seeing that we measure our own success a lot different than those who "support" us. I once had someone tell me years ago when I started doing stand-up comedy that they would come and see me when I got big and famous. "Don't bother" would have been a good response, but a waste of breath. This person represents a small minded approach to life who's children will be told "they won't amount to much" unless they do succeed despite the terrible upbringing. These are the types of people who never rise above their station in life and it's pretty much their fault, although they are happily ignorant of it. They're the type that scream about "The Rich Folks!!" but never really aspire to be one unless they win really big on Bingo night. They, as I wrote last week, repeat the same economically terrible decisions as their parents and blame the outside world for their circumstance. Some of the blame does belong on the outside world, but repeating the same behaviors generation after generation only solidify the grip the outside world has on these folks. They have relinquished their power to change, as Johnny Hotshot said on our "Pros & Cons" segment during the Weekly Telegram last week, due to a certain comfort level. "I Want My MTV!!".
I've learned that hard work, determination and sacrifice can get you turned and headed in the right direction. These things can even get you where you want to be in your career. What these things can't do is bring you happiness in what you choose to do with your life, that comes from appreciation. Looking at the small victories, enjoying the ride on the way up and surrounding yourself with people who are there to cheer you on the whole way, not just part of it, that's where the true joy in life comes from. Having folks to share these things with and celebrating the successes on their path are where the true riches come from. I have been blessed enough to build a community such as this and I really do celebrate when I see people I know succeeding. There's no jealously because I working hard on my success as well. Can you imagine whole communities such as this? What about cities, county's or even an entire state?
What would happen if the folks who were in the lower to middle class started supporting each other in this way? What if we saw each other through the small steps right up to rest of the process. Instead of waiting until someone "made it", we were there at all times.
I'll give you an example from my industry that you can equate to other professions. A sitcom star's show will get canceled. He will then decide that to make money, he will hire some writers and hit the road as a comedian. Has he performed as a comic before? No, but how hard could it be? You would think it would be tough for him to get work, but not so. The comedy clubs will hire him in a second because he's been on TV and guess what? People will line up to see him and he'll sell the club out, so he'll get work every where and get paid just about what ever he wants to charge. Meanwhile, guys such as myself who have been struggling for 20 years, will be regulated to opening for this guy or just loosing the work. I may sound bitter, but this is not a drill folks, this is reality. What really sucks is the guy's performance, so the people who came to see him are disappointed and don't come out to watch me or one of my peers who are much funnier that "Mr. Sitcom" when we're are at the club. Now expand this out to life and industries at large and you see the "small mindedness" of the situation. Everyone shares the blame. The Sitcom star, the clubs and the people who support him and not the true comedians.
Life happens in increments, people fail or succeed at their own pace. We should support the good people around us however possible. You will be pleasantly surprised to see what happens, especially when they start to succeed and that support come back to you!!
Truth Be Told: Celebrate the little things that happen in peoples lives, otherwise why the hell would they want you there when the big things happen!!
I'm putting this post out BEFORE it's in my syndicated column "Truth Be Told" because I think it's that important. I also had a conversation with my fellow Comedian/Film Maker Amaru Lewis after watching his movie (He wrote, shot, edited, narrated, etc) "Annie Was A Liar: The Truth About Being In Foster Care" and it seemed to me that this post could be tied in to what we had discussed. I will expound on The BTS Radio Show Wednesday, March 26th. If you can listen live, I'll post the archive and the show on Spreaker when it's available.
Truth Be Told: The Rich Get Richer.....and WE LET THEM!!!
As someone who grew up in a broken home, had a mother who at one time was on food stamps, lived in my grandparents basement for a short while, I have seen the poor side of the fence very close up. I know there's folks out there who've had it far worse and I don't want to get into a comparison war, I'm just qualifying my poverty status. I've also struggled recently, as many have, in this stubbornly sluggish economy.
For a good part of my life I fell into the "hate the rich" and "woe is me" mindset that so many poor and lower class (economically) people have everywhere in the world. I now believe this very mindset keeps these people where they are forever. This is what we saw with the 'Occupy Wall Street" movement. I can identify with their frustration, but, I never understood their mindless ramblings however, and their ignorance defeated their own movement.
Crying, whining, acting like trash and stealing are not ways to get the rich to change their ways and come off with some dough. All these activities do is make the snobs say to themselves, "There you have it, a bunch of savages who can't even form coherent thoughts!!". No, I believe now there are other ways to turn the tables and WE do have the power to do it. Alas, I feel there are many whom even if they understood this, would not make the life changes necessary to carry out an economic revolution.
The change many were looking for in electing Obama was from the outside, they never bothered to look within. These people weren't going to change horrible spending habits ($2000 rims and a $1000 stereo system on a car worth $1500), they expected someone else to change the rules, the game, the field or what ever it took for them to get "Theirs" without working for it! They were not about to focus on education, hard work, sacrifice, goals or putting together an economic plan. It's taken me a while to figure out that it really is up to me, I have to be the change I want to see.
The rich stay rich because we let them. These poor fools don't sacrifice for a better way of life, they sacrifice for a pair of $300 shoes or a big screen TV. They don't think about who gets their money! These idiots buy the yachts, condos and Islands for the greedy ones while standing out in the streets making nonsensical speeches and talking on their $200 cell phones.
The rich folks could help out the situation by supporting independent, family owned businesses, giving back to the communities they grew up in by building new stadiums for dilapidated schools or sponsoring a segment on my radio program The BTS Radio Show! (Hey, I have to eat too!).
How do we take back some of the wealth in this country and grow our middle class again? It's really very easy. Support your fellow man!! Help the little guy out, support those family owned restaurants when you hear of one opening in your area. Stop giving money to the well known national brands, explain to your kids it's cooler to support folks like yourselves instead of the people who already have 3 houses. (I know that's a tough one). Think about the economic impact you, your friends and family could have if you stopped buying from a brand who does not treat it's employees fairly. If a company is found to pay it's workers poorly, never gives raises, cuts it's losses buy firing people instead of not taking huge bonuses for it's CEOs, let's put there GREEDY, NON-WEALTH SHARING ASSES out of business. If a company's CEOs, owners, board of directors, etc. invest or stick their money in overseas accounts QUIT BUYING THEIR PRODUCT.
Truth Be Told, when we reward people who are greedy, we can't complain about a bunch of greedy rich folks!!
Here's the post I submitted for my column "Truth Be Told" in The Weekly Telegram, it should be up soon, but you folks can see it first. I know the situation has accelerated since I wrote the post, but I did find my comments were close to what other people were saying. I want people to know, these are my own opinions, I wrote this before I heard or read any comments about the crisis, thanks.
Truth Be Told: Putin is Puttin it to Obama and the West of the World
I know the situation in the Ukraine is not a laughing matter, but I was amused watching the changing headlines on AOL as this event unfolds. When things started really going downhill and Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych fled Kiev last month, I was watching the news. First, Obama said for Putin not to interfere in the situation or there would be consequences. Nothing concrete or specific, just "Consequences". The next headline about Russia relayed that Putin was going to his Parliament to seek permission to use force in the Ukraine. Obama's headline did not change, just the good old "Consequences" and nothing more. Then the headline for Putin changed to read that he had gotten permission to use what ever force he thought necessary and it was a unanimous vote by the way. Still, "Consequences" from Obama and nothing more. Putin went in and now the stress level is very high, but on who?
Putin made quick calculated decisions, weighed pros and cons without testing the wind or putting together a task force. Whether you like him or not, he's a strong leader who does what he think's is best in his country's interest and does not seem to car what Obama says. They had a 90 minute phone conversation at some point during this incident in the Ukraine and what ever Obama said did not deter Putin.
What ever sanctions the West may put on Putin's Russia can be made up by signing deals with other countries or at least, that's what the Russian's are counting on.
Didn't Obama have strong words for Putin when Snowden scampered off to Russia? Where's Snowden now? HMMMMMM...
I don't think force would be the answer in this case and I'm sick of war myself anyway. Strong leadership and someone who can build bridges with people he may not see eye to eye with is what's needed here. We don't have that in this man, Obama, who's are President for now. He's great at leading people who believe in him, terrible at gathering support from folks who don't. He talks down to people whom he perceives may not agree with him. That's a horrible way for a 'Leader" to act and does not instill confidence. His blind followers will never see this, but even people on the fence about him have to admit he's more of a divider that someone who brings people together. Truth Be Told, RESPECT can be a better deterrence than words or force sometimes!
From my "Truth Be Told" column. We also debated the Arizona law that was vetoed by the governor that dealt with Gay rights vs. Religious rights, so to speak. The debate between Will Roberts, Johnny Hotshot and myself on the Pros & Cons" segment of Will's Weekly Telegram became quite heated at times. We are now on over 36 stations worldwide with the show and I must imagine we strike a nerve with some folks.
Truth Be Told: The Gay Thang
Yes, I know I spelled 'Thing" wrong, but since you're here, let's go!!
We now have basketball and football players who have come out as gay, and may I say from the spots talk shows I've listened to the past month or so on this subject, that there have been gay players is nothing new. That they have come out is new and yes, brave. Now let's look at facts as see where we can go from there.
I don't believe people should be bullied or picked on because of ANYTHING!! Let me repeat, anything, religion, sexual preference, skin color, weight, etc. Unfortunately this happens. I got picked on a lot as a youngster, I was nerdy, I had a terrible last name for a boy and I tried to do what was right. Not a good combination. The fact is, because I'm a straight, white,Christian male, I should just shrug it off and deal with it. I have so no big deal. Yet, change any aspect of my religion, sexual preference or skin color and I can gain a lot more sympathy towards my behavior in certain situations.
I'll say it again, because some people forget what they read when you write something they don't agree with. NOBODY should be discriminated against because of religion, sexual preference, skin color, etc. This should be for all people, not certain folks as this is the case a lot in this country. We should have equal rights, not SPECIAL rights!! When people try to force their views or lifestyles on us whomever they are it's wrong! We don't HAVE TO ACCEPT some one's lifestyle, but we should not harass them because of it. This is where I think the GAY AGENDA looses it's way. Yes, I understand you're a minority. Do you? Do you understand that usually a man is attracted to a woman and because you're not you're different. That's not my fault and I don't have to understand it, accept it, teach it to my kids or be subject to sensitivity training about it. I don't, however, have the right to bully or try to make you're life hell because you are different. I also feel marriage is between a man and a woman, should I be castigated because of my view? If you do and you're gay, then you're a hypocrite. You want me to respect you and you're view on gay marriage, but mine is null and void. Oh, and I'm homophobic. RIDICULOUS!! At the same time, I don't think the government, should have a say in the matter either way. That's between, GOD and the 2 people who want to be joined in Holy Matrimony, so there, surprise!!
These athletes, if capable, should be able to compete without a fear of what will happen in the locker room. But at the same time, they must understand that their team mates do not have to accept their life outside the game. When we as a society can respect each other equally and tolerate our differences, we will truly be civilized. This is not the case with some groups who only see their side of things and refuse to see the people who have never harassed them or the people who have stood up for them, even thought they may not agree with their lifestyle.
Truth be told, in the end, you get the respect you give.
Truth Be Told: Terrorists, the highest form of bullies, the lowest form of life!!
In one of my earlier columns and on The Weekly Telegram's 'Pros & Cons" segment I have stated how I believe terrorism is the ultimate level of bullying. Terrorists and bullies use the same methods. Fear and intimidation. They prey on the weak and weak minded. That's not where the similarities end. It's why they do what they do that is also similar. It's about power and getting what they want, even when it's WRONG! Sometimes it seems, the more EVIL the deed, the harder they push to have someone blow themselves up for it. We all know the leaders of these organizations are the worst. They recruit people to kill themselves while they sit back and praise Allah. If Allah is good then they're praising the wrong guy, they need to look the other way, down that is.
Will Roberts asked me and Johnny Hotshot recently on his show, which stories we thought were the most under reported of 2013. A very tough question that Will and Johnny gave very good answers to. My answer was the story of the 16 year old girl shot by these terrorist pigs because she wanted to get an education. I know it was covered a lot, but there should have been more in my opinion. The news media should have covered every single angle and opinion about this story to embarrass the cowards who carried out this attempt on a little girls life. What kind of "Man" or "Men" shoot a little girl in the head, on purpose, because she wants to learn? This for a "Religion"? This is a 'Good God" that commands this? No, like I said earlier, it's the other guy, the one with the horns. She should have got the Nobel Peace Prize, by the way. That just shows how much of a farce that "Prize" has become, it's all political now. Maybe it always was and never really meant anything to begin with.
I bring this subject up because of the recent threats to the Winter Olympics. So far, so good. I think the Russians have done more damage to their own event than the terrorists could do anyway. The fact that people are there and enjoying the festivities as much as possible is a triumph over the terrorist cowards. They're also like gangs and bullies in the fact that they aren't that bright either. They keep putting out their stupid threats, suicide bummers and all the rest without even realizing the fortitude that is being forged against them. Every single act they perpetrate just helps to reinforce the wall of shame they are building around themselves. They are wrong, they are evil and they are losing. The way they conduct themselves screams out "Wicked"! Truth Be Told, the methods of the terrorist will ensure their own failure!!
After a very heated debate on the "Pros & Cons" segment on Will Robert's Weekly Telegram a little over a week ago, I wrote this column a few days later. It had been in my head and I had to get it out. I wrote most of it, then waited a day before sending it in, I wanted to calm down. I'm glad I waited, there were some things I changed. This post is very personal as it describes some very tough times in my life and I do not take these issues lightly!
Welfare, The Rich & The Economy!
Let me first qualify myself for those of you who may have missed the latest segment of "Pro's and Con's" on Will's Weekly Telegram Radio Program or my last "Truth be Told" column " A New Tone out of Washington ?".
I grew up in a broken home, we were on food stamps from time to time and always seemed to be moving. I went to at least 3 different elementary schools and lived in my Grandparents basement for a short time. My mother struggled to keep a roof over our heads and I never saw my father until I was eighteen, he left when I was five and a half. We finally stayed in the same place when I was about thirteen and I wound up leaving to try college, only to come back until I went into the USAF. I escaped poverty for a while in the military, only to come back to it once I got out. I've struggled myself over the years, but I've also enjoyed my career and have traveled all across the USA, Canada, performed on Cruise Ships and at the World famous Atlantis resort, twice so far.
The reason I qualify myself is because I mystified as to why people on the left are so quick to berate me for slamming the people who live on welfare with no plans of ever getting off it. I have seen first hand the people who use it to help them get out of their situation and people who have no shame in making a career out of it. I'm not backing down anymore to these folks who get angry at me for daring to say these people exist and "where do people on the right get the notion that this stuff goes on?" . Then they bring up the rich!! Hey man, let's stay with the poor discussion for now. The rich could care less about this crap. We in the lower and middle class should be outraged! We work our guts out to get ourselves off of welfare and I tell you there should not be ONE person in this country who rides the system like a wave into the grave!!! You people who want to get angry when I bring up facts and quotes about people who abuse the system are yelling at the wrong person. I never have said that unemployment insurance should be cut, as a matter of fact, I have written that I believe some Republicans don't want to help the people who try to help themselves. We must be able to have a dialogue in this country about what's going on in the welfare system ( BTW some IDIOT elected official out west wants to change to the name of "welfare" to "transitional" something or other. Does changing the name change the reality?) without changing the name or the subject. I guess some of these folks want to wait until the percentage of welfare abusers is high enough for them to feel comfortable about even paying it some attention. If people are cheating the system, it's a black eye on the people who really need and APPRECIATE the help. Let's get rid of the "I'm gonna sit around , have babies and watch my big screen TV" idiots who take funds that should go to people who want to work but are having a tough time in this economy! We also need to increase the minimum wage and do it NOW! On to the EVIL rich!
Yes, there are some rich jerks who do not pay their fare share. They also make sure that certain people, or certain types of people, don't get a break. There's a big boy club in this country, I'm sorry, hundreds if not thousands of these clubs. If you don't know the right people, you have to jump through the hoops to get a "fair" shot. We as a society can go a long way to correcting some of these injustices. HOW, you ask! Do a little research, adjust your spending habits and see what happens. We do have the power to get rid of the rich folks who are greedy, arrogant, horrible people. If the buying public would look a little more into the practices of some of these big business's and stick to their guns when it came to not buying certain products, you would see a lot of change. If people who stepped on the backs of others to get to the top were ratted out and gotten rid of professionally, we would have an ethics revolution. One good thing that came out of the ignorant and disastrous "occupy Wall Street" movement, was we saw that A LOT of people are angry about this way things are going in this country. When we go though a terrible financial storm as we have and are still recovering from, with business's still having record profits, big bonuses, but laying people off , there's something wrong. WE can correct it folks, we don't need BIG Brother. WE are more powerful than the government, OH YEAH!! What's worse to a business, a fine from Uncle Sam or NO CUSTOMERS? If a company is firing people left and right, while the CEO gets a huge bonus and the board or directors has extravagant parties, conventions, etc, DON"T BUY THEIR PRODUCT!!!
I do believe it's time to change the types of people who get the gig. I've seen it in my industry. I couldn't get past a 30 second audition for "Last Comic Standing" when I tried out for the first season and I had been doing comedy at that point for around ten years. However, the girl behind me in line got accepted to the next level and she had never done comedy!! She had "a look", that's why she got picked, which begs the question "Why the hell is "Comic" in the title of the show? This happens in the entertainment business and I also believe a certain form of this is practiced in other industries as well. We, as consumers and big business buy into "style over substance". WE can correct this as well buy choosing folks who have true talent to support, instead of just someone who has a "look". These are not the only ways to fix the economy, but every little bit helps. I refuse to listen to the folks who say, "Well, that program only wastes a couple of hundred thousand dollars". I guess they can't do simple math and don't realize that if we have several thousand such programs this stuff adds up! ALL waste and fraud needs to go, no matter the amount of money wasted. Truth Be Told, an honest days work for an honest days pay still makes sense!
I'm not sure if Will Roberts starting tweeting more or if this post I did for his Weekly Telegram resonated with a lot of people. Either way, this post has been re tweeted every day this week. I look forward to any and all comments!
A New Tone out of Washington?
In the spirit of "Hope & Change", I'm hoping that some things change in the coming year concerning this country's leadership. This I mean for ALL sides of the equation. Both or our major political parties need to wake up, stop the bickering and the pandering!
The RepubliCANS need to look at the fact that the middle class is shrinking along with the American dream. The rich are getting richer off the back of the poor and this party just sits, collects money and watches. SHAME on them!! We do need an increase in the minimum wage and it's been to long that it's been put off. This will not hurt the economy, it will help it! Also, how can they put themselves in bed politically with CEO's who make big bonuses while their company goes bankrupt and people lose their jobs? Corporate welfare sucks and if a company goes out of business while the CEO's are buying an island to park their yacht, something needs to be looked into, let's get real people! They also need to quit being judgmental about people's sex lives. I'm a Christian, but I don't want to vote for someone who thinks their better than me because they go to the right church or have the perfect life. I don't believe in Gay marriage, but I also believe that this issue is between God and the people who chose to practice same sex marriage vows. The government should not be involved as far as saying it's the law one way or the other. If there's an official church that will do the ceremony, the government must honor the paperwork. Can't both sides understand that we are giving the government to much power in these decisions? DAMN! If you're going to be the party of smaller government, practice what you preach!! Pun intended!
The Democrats have got to stop pandering to the lazy, "the world owes me", leeches of our society. Yes, people need a helping hand, I understand that. My mom was on welfare, collecting food stamps, for a little while when I was growing up, but guess what? She used the system until she got a job and got back on her feet and could take care of me and my brother. She did not lay around all day, have more kids that she could not afford and cry "Who's gonna feed my babies? Somebodies got to pay for this!". The Dems have no shame in reaching out to these wastes of oxygen, getting their vote and making sure they stay where they are at. They could care less about a segment of our society that breeds fatherless children that in turn grow up to be ignorant sperm donors who can't even talk or wear pants properly. No, these facts need to be kept in the dark. As long as they can be kept on the plantation, these people can make it to the bus that takes them to the voting booth and we know who they're voting for. A race of people once stood together and faced down armed guards to get an education.Now a big percentage of that same race could care less about going to school, and their so called leaders along with their political party, the Democrats, are strangely silent on this. Why? Because they don't really care, they just want the power and don't want to upset the gravy train. If they start speaking the truth, the real issues will come out and spark growth in that community. If these people grow as humans and educate themselves, some of them may not vote Democrat anymore, there's your answer. SHAME on them as well.
I'm not saying these things will happen, but they would help our country to grow and prosper. I just don't think the current leadership of certain segments of our society will ever deal in truth when it comes to their own responsibilities, it's always someone else's fault. You can never grow if you don't look at you own decision making. Will we ever hear a tone from Washington that says " We are here to help and protect, but there's some things you must do for yourselves." . The Dems will not say that to their voting block and I'm not sure the Reps. are ready to help the common man help himself. Truth Be Told, there is a common ground, it's called common sense!
First of all, Happy New Year to everyone and here's making 2014 the best it can be!
After a year of complete depression coupled with downhill movement personally and professionally in 2012, I was glad to see 2013 making it's way into the scene. I did not have a huge amount of hope going into last year, but I did have enough to keep myself moving forward. I kept my non-smoking resolution from 2012 and will celebrate 2 years smoke free this February. I started changing spending habits and worked almost non-stop 2013 in four different ventures. I started digging out of the hole I and the economy dug for myself. AS I look back, it seems as though I was not only digging as hole, but climbing in and shoveling the dirt on top of myself.
2013 to me was a year of rebuilding. I was rebuilding personally by making changes in the way I saw life, the way I reacted to the outside world and how I treated others. That was the start that I'm still and will always be working on. I also worked hard at getting back on my feet financially after a terrible fall in that area. My profession as a comedian took a hit in 2011-2012 because of the economy and I shoulder some of the blame as well for retreating into the darkness called depression. I still managed to get some work, but I did not try as hard as I should, which was compounded by losing gigs due to clubs closing.
These things I tell you because coming into 2014 I took some time to reflect on 2013 and I saw it was a year of building. I talked with others about this and found there were a lot of parallels in their lives as well. Kinetic HiFi, the station where my radio program The BTS Radio Show originates, has moved into a new studio and my show was the first one on air. Jan. 1 2014. I say this not to brag but to show the parallel and we discussed this on the show as well. I saw this happening with my father and his profession as well. His industry , insurance, has taken a hit and he's had to adjust to massive changes as well.
I also saw this growth on a national level. This country went through economic, racial and foreign policy strife a lot of 2013. I will not cast blame, I will not point fingers. I think we should look at the country and ourselves overall. I believe we grew as a country in 2013 and we will see the results of that growth soon. Growth can be painful, yet rewarding. It takes time to make changes and even more time to see the results of those changes. This process can take longer when we're talking about something as large as The USA, but I am hopeful. I have and will always say onstage that I believe my success relies on me, not the government. I also believe the success of our country relies on our citizens and not our government. I am determined to stay on the path I'm paving personally and I see those around me maintaining the roads they are building. I believe we as a country can do the same. We can keep each other motivated, keep ourselves moving forward and take the country to new heights. Truth Be Told, we can make 2014 a year for continued growth and overall success!