It is seldom that I realize we have so much opportunity — opportunity to learn and become a better nation.
Based on our collective decisions last night, I realize these new roads await.
What are these new roads and opportunities?
Let’s get started:
I now realize that many people still have not learned that lying is wrong. We elected a new President who lies 91% of the time and tells the truth 4% of the time. Clearly, so many still don’t know that lying is not a good thing. And, now, when we try to teach our children that lying is not a good thing, we will have so many examples to readily share.
Without watching, we can surmise the content of each show: Meet the Press will feature an equal number of Sony sympathizers and haters who rationally discuss the positives and negatives of Sony’s decision. Fareed Zakaria will bring his normally measured, international perspective on why we need to tread carefully. And Fox News will feature a bevy of Republicans who will talk about how Obama is weak and we need to be strong on this one to demonstrate that we are America the Almighty. They’ll also have one token Democrat who is dismissed by all the others.
It’s the Fox News perspective, the one that purports to “keep America safe”, that scares me.
I am currently reading the third book of Ken Follett’s Century Triology called the Edge of Eternity. This book takes you through the goings-on in the world after 1960 and I have just finished the section which covered the Cuban Missile Crisis.
I wasn’t alive during this time but the book indicates that people really did think that the end of the world was at hand as the two mighty super-powers–the USA and USSR, nearly entered an all-out war over the USSR placing nuclear missiles, that could reach the USA In minutes, in Cuba. I have confirmed this sentiment with my family members who were around during this time. For a few nights, people literally were unsure whether the world would as they knew it would exist the next morning.
Since the deterioration and dismantling of the USSR, the talk of a nuclear world war has subsided. Most Millennials (those born after 1980) have never even considered this. The idea hasn’t surfaced on their Facebook or Twitter feeds.
But should it? From the outset, the great fear in the nuclear world came in the form of a question: “What if nuclear weapons fall into the hands of a crazy dictator?”
Meet another Millennial—Kim Jon-un, the leader of North Korea, who purportedly orchestrated this all-out cyber-attack on Sony because of a movie, The Interview. The movie features two extremely popular, likable, and often stony Millennials, Seth Rogan and James Franco, and was written and directed by Rogan and his other millennial cohorts.
I wonder if they considered the ramifications of a movie whose plot is to assassinate a world leader. I don’t think I would have but, in talking with some elder people—non-Millennials—their immediate reaction is: “What did they expect making a movie about offing a world leader?”
Certainly, they didn’t expect this. Take a look at the Interview below with Seth Rogan on Bill Maher. I am quite certain that he smoked a blunt with some buddies and hatched the plot for this movie, all the while laughing, contriving, and thinking This would be f***ing hilarious!
Meanwhile, on this Sunday morning talk show circuit, gatherings of non-Millenials, mostly aged white guys sitting at and doing their self-important roundtables, will discuss this issue ad-nauseam. As they do so, I hope they remember that oft-asked, pre-Millennial question of their time: What if nuclear weapons fall into the hands of a crazy dictator?
And, in asking this question, I hope they remember that Kim Jon-un’s greatest American hero is…Dennis Rodman.
Richard CummingsA Millennial Meltdown? Sony’s The Interview, North Korea, and the USA
This morning I was investigating whether Sweden is a socialist country. Why? Well, having just seen many accusatory commentators on Fox News claiming that we are “becoming a socialist country like Sweden”, I decided to put on my investigative cap and do some research.
The first question that came to my mind was: Is being like Sweden a bad thing?Read More
This morning, as I sit and watch the Sunday morning talk shows, I have one thought, for both Democrats and Republicans: Get On Board or Get Out!
Americans want to be strong again and they are absolutely tired of political squabbling.
Republicans, enough with your silly Grover Norquist pledge. Obama did win the election and one of his tenants was to cut the tax breaks on those earning over $250,000. So do it! And while we’re at, enough squabbling about the Benghazi attack. Even if it was not handled properly (which I do not necessarily buy), your side missed signals that would have prevented the largest terrorist attack in America. So, zip it! And, John McCain, I love ya buddy and you are an American hero, but you’ve become an anachronism. You live in Arizona and are older than most retirees. Start enjoying some golf…
And Democrats, it was not landslide. Something like 47% went with the other side. You have to give on entitlements.
And to those of you who are still lost in right-wing talk radio that bashes just about everything…YOU’RE NOT GOOD FOR THE COUNTRY!
I voted for Obama because he understands the world better than the latest version of the Republicans, who still live in a black and white “we’re the best, bomb people if they dont’ realize it world”. Have you see the latest stats on America? We’re way behind in a bunch of categories. Read this…we’re not even in the top 10 in standard of living among civilized countries.
Do you want to be on top again?
We need leaders who set aside their political partisanship and do what is best for the country.
I was a huge Ronald Reagan fan because he was a true leader, a trait I think Obama has and one that I hope he soon displays.
Let’s end today’s rant with one of Ronnie’s famous quotes:
“If you’re afraid of the future, then get out of the way, stand aside. The people of this country are ready to move again.”
Richard CummingsThe Sunday Opinion From Live Your Way
Every 4 years, I write a column about the presidential election and do my best to articulate for whom I am voting and why.
As I look back at my 2008 article, I decided to vote for Barack Obama 4 years ago because he had a better understanding of America’s place in the world. I remember being slightly incensed that Americans were not more upset that George Bush had undertaken a war under false pretenses, a war that killed more than 100,000 Iraqi civilians who had done nothing to harm us. At the time, John McCain did not seem to offer a different approach than George Bush.
So, here we are 4 years later looking at Barack Obama and Mitt Romney on voting day 2012 after a far-too-long political season. I am struck by one notion more than any other which I will call “The Great Election Irony Of 2012”.
The Great Election Irony of 2012
If you ask the general public, “what is the biggest issue in the 2012 election?”, what do you think the answer will be?
If you are old enough, you may even remember the line from 1992 which drove Bill Clinton to victory against George Bush: “It’s the economy stupid.”
However, it’s not.
This is the great election irony of 2012: A vast majority of the voting public will make there decision today based on the economy.
Why? Why is this ironic?
The president, and his attendant policies, have practically zero effect on the economy! That’s it. Zero.
It’s Not The Economy Stupid
If it’s not the economy stupid, how did Bill Clinton get elected saying that it is?
The sad fact is, as we will see today, you can get elected talking about how bad the economy is under the sitting present or was under a previous president, and how great it will be under your presidency.
However, as president, you and your policies will have little effect on the economy.
Have you ever wondered, after more than 200 years as a country, why we don’t know which policies work and which don’t?
As I was contemplating my upcoming vote for president, I wondered this and so I put on my research cap. I summed up my findings in an article called The Economy: A Definitive Answer. What I found, essentially, is that all of the experts believe that the economic policies of the president have little to no difference on the economy.
That’s right. The presidential policies have practically no ability to impact the #1 issue on which everyone seems to be casting their vote.
The only thing that matters is consumer confidence. If people are confident, the economy will grow.
Apparently, the president needs just a good quote or two. FDR bolstered the economy after the depression by saying, “The only we have to fear is fear itself.” Reagan got people buying again by proclaiming “If you’re afraid of the future, then get out of the way, stand aside. The people of this country are ready to move again.” The second Bush was less inspirational with his “The shops are open; go buy stuff” and the economy sputtered.
If It’s Not The Economy…
So, if it’s not the economy, for whom should you cast your vote?
Let me ask two questions: Do you think America has a better quality of life than other countries? If America did not have a better quality of life than other countries, would you want it to?
If you answered “yes” to the first question, you are certainly not alone. We are reared to believe that we have a better quality of life here in America than anywhere else in the world. The sad fact is…we are not even in the top 10.
Take a moment to view this 3 minute clip from the HBO show Newsroom:
If you want America to be the best again, you need to ask yourself which candidate has a comprehensive plan that will get us there?
In my mind, the answer is Barack Obama. With comprehensive plans for education, healthcare, immigration reform and much more, he focuses on making America great again FOR EVERYONE and he does not discount 47% of the population.
Plus, Barack Obama has a much better understanding of America’s place in the world than Mitt Romney and the general Republican populace, who still seem to view the world in cold war black and white motifs.
Mitt has already made several international blunders in referring to Russia as our greatest enemy, China as a currency manipulator he will go after, and insulting England as he made his Olympic visit. Cold war tough talk does not function in 2012. Nuance is required.
Barack Obama better understands the nuances of international politics and will not declare war on a country without making every possible effort at diplomacy.
And, though we do not want foreign countries deciding our leaders, it is important to have positive relationships with foreign countries, nearly all of whom prefer Barack Obama to Mitt Romney.
In the end, I ask myself questions such as these: Which president will provide the inner-city child the best opportunity to get a college education? Which president will see to affordable healthcare for ALL Americans? Which president will attend to improvements in the environment?
In my mind, the answer to all of these types of questions is Barack Obama. He has the polices and mindset that have the best chance of raising the quality of life for ALL Americans and that will get my vote today!
Richard CummingsFor Whom I Voted and Why | Presidential Election 2012
You can watch the debate between Jon Stewart and Bill O’Reilly online right here.
Jon Stewart Bill O'Reilly Face Off
The debate, which took place last night, features The Daily Show’s Jon Stewart and Bill O’Reilly of Fox News. This was initially a pay-per-view for charity but there were many technical problems with the streaming of the debate so they have put the Bill O’Reilly Jon Stewart debate online for free viewing.
You can watch the full debate between Stewart and O’Reilly below: