Talking About What We Understand

One of the bloggers I follow is Doug Masson, a thoughtful and impressively erudite observer of the circus that is current American politics. I was especially struck by his recent post on the humanitarian crisis in Puerto Rico, and mainland American preoccupations.

Puerto Rico is suffering. Like a lot. 3.4 million Americans have been without power for 5 days and the prospect of getting the electric grid up and running seems to be distant. 90% of the distribution system may have been destroyed. 91% of cellphone sites are also out of service, according to the FCC.

Despite this crisis, I’ve been hearing more about whether football players will stand or kneel during a game. Judging from the emotional energy spent online during the past couple of days, the manner in which sports professionals choose to observe the national anthem and conduct their protest is more alarming than the prospect of 3.4 million Americans facing a humanitarian crisis. Hell, I’m guilty of knowing and talking more about Kaepernick than what’s going on in San Juan which is, by the way, the only Puerto Rican city I can name without looking at a map.

Masson is certainly not alone in pointing out the difference in what I might call the “emotional investment” in these two issues. He is, however, the only one to point out a disquieting reason for that difference: something he identifies as the “bike shedding effect.” That is a term I had not previously encountered (and I’m not entirely clear on its derivation even after reading his post). Masson shares an illustration:

He provides the example of a fictional committee whose job was to approve the plans for a nuclear power plant spending the majority of its time on discussions about relatively minor but easy-to-grasp issues, such as what materials to use for the staff bike shed, while neglecting the proposed design of the plant itself, which is far more important and a far more difficult and complex task.

This example really hit home, because it was reminiscent of an experience my husband shared with me some twenty years ago. He was the architect for a new school building, and he was presenting the preliminary plans at a school board meeting. He anticipated a number of significant questions about the design–everything from room sizes to emergency exits to features affecting pedagogy–but the only discussion the board engaged in centered on the size of the elevator for handicapped individuals, and whether it should be large enough to accommodate one wheel chair or two.

The Board spent over an hour on that issue. No other was raised.

My husband was dumbfounded. On his way out of the meeting, he ran into a friend and shared his befuddlement; the friend–who was pretty savvy–just smiled and said, “You know, people talk about what they can understand.”

As Masson goes on to explain in his post, it’s relatively simple to form an opinion about what respect for the flag entails (and whether and how people of color should complain when the country doesn’t live up to its ideals). Whether those attitudes are knee-jerk or considered, they’re relatively straightforward.

Puerto Rico is another matter. Significant numbers of mainland Americans aren’t even aware that Puerto Ricans are American citizens (I have my doubts whether Trump knew that before the hurricane–after all, they’re brown people). Relatively few of us have traveled there, have relatives there, know much about it, or know what FEMA is or should be doing in the face of massive devastation.

So we talk about what we (think we) understand. That’s rather obviously what Trump is doing with his diatribes against the NFL.

The problem is, as America’s problems mount, it becomes very clear that there are so many pressing, important issues that most of us don’t understand. (Guess what! Obamacare and the ACA are the same thing…) But rather than informing ourselves about them–we focus on  recent TV shows, or an outrageous celebrity, or “those people” who disagree with us.

And then we wonder why democracy doesn’t work.

45 thoughts on “Talking About What We Understand

  1. You mentioned that America’s problems are mounting. There were three major huricanes in a matter of a couple weeks while wildfires have been destroying land out west – all at the same time. We are overwhelmed with constant disasters and the nonstop news outlets keep repeating themselves in an effort to fill air time.

    I will admit that I know nothing about Puerto Rico. While I find the pictures and stories of devastation to be heartbreaking, like many others I don’t know what I can do for them. It is so catastrophic that it is mind boggling. On top of this I find it hard to feel a national connection to Puerto Rico because we never really hear anything about this territory. It really seems that they are a foreign country rather than a U.S. territory.

    Finally, during all of these disasters 45 continues to keep the focus on himself with his constant tweets aimed at dividing us. I think we are all exhausted.

  2. Bob’s experience regarding the architecture of the handicapped elevator took me back many years to an all-day, city-sponsored meeting regarding the emergency evacuation of the City of Indianapolis under different disastrous conditions. One primary issue was to assure that all police districts and fire departments were aware of where handicapped lived. There is no reasonable way this can be accomplished in a city this size. One issue was the flooding which occurred as regular as the severe storms here at that time and removal of handicapped by boat. During a break I asked the primary speaker (I believe the Director of Public Safety) if they considered also removing wheelchairs with the handicapped. He looked confused and said they hadn’t considered it and asked why I brought it up. I asked if they were going to simply lay the handicapped on the bottom of boats and transport them to a dock where they would be laid out to wait to be hauled somewhere dry? I had to explain to the City leader of disaster evacuation of handicapped that their wheelchairs were their legs. Asking about guide dogs for the blind also being evacuated seemed too much for him to absorb so I walked away.

    Trump is true to the description of “talking about what he knows”; all he knows is Donald Trump so don’t expect to hear anything of value from him…unless he can tell us where we can find those “soft, very, very nice paper towels” he threw at Puerto Ricans as a means of salvation.

    “So we talk about what we (think we) understand. That’s rather obviously what Trump is doing with his diatribes against the NFL.”

    What Trump fails to understand or even be aware of, which the NFL members and their supporters do understand, is the loss in this country of the meaning of the last line of the National Anthem and respect for the flag which flies; “…o’er the land of the FREE and the home of the brave.”

  3. These are comments I posted on Facebook this morning regarding “what is on my mind.” Will any of the Republicans in Congress step up to support Senator Corker and begin TALKING ABOUT WHAT THEY UNDERSTAND…AND KNOW TO BE THE TRUTH ABOUT THE DANGERS OF TRUMP BEFORE WWWIII BEGINS?

    “Are you watching? Are you listening? Most important; are you hearing? Republican Senator Bob Corker is giving a Call to Arms to all Republicans who are whispering and muttering among themselves what he is saying loud and clear. Asking them to show their full awareness of what is going on in the White House and how close we are coming to WWWIII due to Trump’s lack of rational thought or self control of his mouth or awareness that he is begging North Korea to make the presumptive strike or force Trump to push that button. To Trump; this is all a game, a pissing contest, my guns are bigger than your guns and he is playing this game with our lives against his alter-ego, Kim Jong Un. Trump is also enticing Iran; President Obama was not the only national leader who signed the anti-nuclear pact with Iran; the only pact with even a promise of control of nuclear power. Trump has insulted each and every other world leader in his bids for constant attention and adulation; can any of them be counted on to remain our ally if Trump succeeds in his lust for world war? Any level of war beginning during Trump’s administration will not be for saving this country from enemy powers or the world….it will be to FEED HIS INSATIABLE EGO!!!”

  4. “He [Mason] is, however, the only one to point out a disquieting reason for that difference: something he identifies as the “bike shedding effect.”

    As a country, we’re becoming more and more analogous to the Challenger Space Shuttle disaster.

    Unwilling to fully examine the “0 rings” problem, the shuttle technicians turned to a POWERPOINT PRESENTATION to present their case that everything was GO.

    I’m afraid we’re doing the same thing with the way we are handling our major problems with a strong possibility of the same result, not only for the U.S.A. but also for PLANET EARTH.

    See “The World as aTotal System” by Kenneth E. Bolding (Sage Publications, Inc., Beverly Hills, 1985).

  5. Why does this horror show continue?

    One good reason is that the PSYCHIATRISTS are operating under a self- imposed GAG ORDER. Consequently, only a handful have the courage to speak out.

  6. These are extreme times. If psychiatrists ran the red light, so to speak, maybe they could actually save the world even if they broke a traffic law. SOMEBODY DO SOMETHING.

  7. From “The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump: 27 Psychiatrists and Health Experts assess a President” by Band X. Lee, M.D. (St. Martin’s Press, New York, 2017):

    “If we are to be mindful of the dangers of politicizing the professions, then certainly we must heed the so-called “Goldwater rule,” or Section7.3 of the APA Code of Ethics (American Psychiatric Association 2013, p.6) which states : “it is unethical for a psychiatrist to offer a professional opinion [on a public figure] unless he or she has conducted an examination and has been granted proper authorization for such a statement.”

    Therefore, in other words, we should all sit back and “wait for the house to burn down.”

    UNBELIEVABLE !

  8. Marge,

    “SOMEBODY DO SOMETHING.”

    Maybe we should organize against the Psychiatrists. That’s probably the only option we have at this late in the game. There is little time left.

    I’ll do it. What about The Movement to force American Psychiatrists to have the Courage to Speak Out. I already own the website: w.w.w.TheMovement.world?

    As a matter of fact, as an attorney in Texas, I was both trial attorney and attorney on appeal in Pesch vs. The State of Texas which helped establish the Texas law on the insanity defense.

    I’m aware that I’m violating the rules of this blog. But sometimes you’re damned if you do and damned if you don’t. I’ve always erred on the side of DO. Please forgive me.

  9. I remember the military would go into areas devistated by a hurricane in the caribbean, as a former seabee,there was a base in PR,ready to help, since the advent of FEMA, now i guess its all privatized,and for profit,(alec)did i let a cat out of the bag here? the fact that a foreign enity is unable to help, is a major mismanagement,played again for gain by the white house to suppress the ideas, of others, who we once helped. as far as the NFL, we need awareness in matters still swept under a rug, if you never lived in a impoverished area,then dont judge. Im from newark ,n.j. only my white skin got me out of the area,I broke bread with the many still there, and support any means needed to make a stand on this oppression. its dileberate,its intentional, and its real. when the white barrons can kick anyone to the curb,for mearly trying to survive a world with little help,mentoring and goals for the less advantaged, we alone,are to blame. boycotting is obviously a bad word,but it opens doors, remember the UFW,and Gallo? it worked, rememeber the workers strikes? it worked. the only player not involved to stop this mess is the fact most people are creditied and tied to just making it, this starvation has made it almost impossible to call a strike,or a out walk out. ( gee pence way to go,on our tax money)but, boycotting the very companies that support further injustice,and sitying on thier hands while watching the stock ticker make money,should be on aleart, we can,and we should, make a stand where it hurts them most,that damn stock market that pays no taxes,has demanded poverty wages,and poverty growth in the work force. theres still republicans backing the demise of the davis-bacon (see HR743)act that guarentees a prevailing wage,to construction workers,on fed,and state jobs.(infrastructure) and this will be a test on labor,as it was with unions to fight this before the infrastructure contracts are negotiated.. only republicans co signed this deliberate cut in wages,and will hold jobs hostage for its passage. again, a deliberate attempt by congress to,suppress wage growth,and jobs, for profits to be made,and given to those who already made all our lives worse. poverty in 2017, is not a disgusting myth, its a fact…and I hold the congress in contempt.

  10. …and to piggyback on what Marv has thankfully keyed, we do so as a people and as a Nation without for one minute taking into account just what sitting back and waiting for the house to burn down will really mean and where we’ll all be at when it is only smoking wreckage. It is unbelievable in the extreme and meanwhile, as the house is fully engulfed, we all argue over kneeling or standing when the national anthem is being played and await every morning Mr. Trump’s latest unhinged and inane tweets. We are all near the end of our tethers with our fearless leader having long separated from his and we cannot just simply stay in this condition.

    Meanwhile, Puerto Rico still sits in ruin and the saber-rattling over North Korea continues to grow louder. Precious time in dealing with both in a coherent way, along with a myriad of other concerns, is being squandered along with our collective sanity.

    Scotty, please beam me up now!!

  11. I suppose there are a few here that remember when radio stations played the top 40 songs. They were played over and over again, until new songs begin to crack the the top 40.

    The News Media or probably a better term would be infotainment media of today: MSNBC, CNN and FOX, spend the entire recycling the same story with their panel of experts. I prefer the BBC News.

    From an article I just read this morning:
    “Something’s happened to the news,” a woman around my age at the DC airport, said to Louise and me. “I don’t know what it is, but we used to actually know a lot of detail about a lot of things going on, 30 years ago, and now it seems like all the media does is focus on one or two stories all day long and I feel like I’m uninformed.”

    “Like eating junk food?” I said.

    “Yeah, exactly. Empty calories. Why doesn’t the news give me the news?”

    The article presents a concise history of how we have arrived here: What the Corporate News Industry Won’t Ever Tell Its Audience – https://www.alternet.org/media/what-news-wont-tell-you-about-news

    There is virtually no reporting on the Wells Fargo, or Equifax scandals.

  12. Can you imagine what a difference it would have been for the benefit of the WORLD if Adolph Hitler was forced to undergo a psychiatric examination before the millions of Germans, both Jews and non-Jews, had needlessly been sacrificed?

  13. Monotonou,

    Also just as important:

    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:

    “The Fairness Doctrine was a policy of the United States Federal Communications Commission (FCC), introduced in 1949, that required the holders of broadcast licenses both to present controversial issues of public importance and to do so in a manner that was — in the Commission’s view — honest, equitable, and balanced. The FCC eliminated the policy in 1987 and removed the rule that implemented the policy from the Federal Register in August 2011.

    The Fairness Doctrine had two basic elements: It required broadcasters to devote some of their airtime to discussing controversial matters of public interest, and to air contrasting views regarding those matters. Stations were given wide latitude as to how to provide contrasting views: It could be done through news segments, public affairs shows, or editorials. The doctrine did not require equal time for opposing views but required that contrasting viewpoints be presented. The demise of this FCC rule has been considered by some to be a contributing factor for the rising level of party polarization in the United States.

    The main agenda for the doctrine was to ensure that viewers were exposed to a diversity of viewpoints. In 1969 the United States Supreme Court upheld the FCC’s general right to enforce the Fairness Doctrine where channels were limited. But the courts did not rule that the FCC was obliged to do so. The courts reasoned that the scarcity of the broadcast spectrum, which limited the opportunity for access to the airwaves, created a need for the Doctrine. However, the proliferation of cable television, multiple channels within cable, public-access channels, and the Internet have eroded this argument, since there are plenty of places for ordinary individuals to make public comments on controversial issues at low or no cost at all[ambiguous].[citation needed] THE PRECEDING SENTENCE MAKES NO SENSE.

    The Fairness Doctrine is not the same as the equal-time rule. The Fairness Doctrine deals with discussion of controversial issues, while the equal-time rule deals only with political candidates.”

  14. Puerto Rico was ceded to the United States in 1898 as a result of the Spanish-American War. Spain lost. America won. I’m not bright enough to know that, but the World Almanac is.

    However, since 1945, I have known Puerto Rico belonged to the U.S. I was stationed at Fort Leonard Wood. My bunk bed was across the aisle from a bunk occupied by two young Puerto Ricans who made the mistake of taking a trip to New York City and were drafted. They were not happy. According to them, Puerto Rico did not belong to the United States. Neither of them spoke a word of English. Fortunately, another gent in our barracks interpreted what they said. And it was spicy.

    It was a milder version of what everybody now says about Fake President Donald Trump.

  15. I’m thinking, maybe, I should contact my former partner, clients, and friends who are retired from the NFL that, maybe, joining TheMovement.world might be a better way of protesting than tarnishing the image of our flag, although I applaud and support their COURAGE in speaking out.

  16. It seems that back when I was a Republican politics were still a contact sport but it was clear that the success or failure of a politician was based largely on public perception of the contribution of the politician towards how the country did on their watch. Sometimes that was not fair but it was easy for the voter to reflect on.

    Our culture has been shifted by media so far towards extremism that many voters now reflect not at all on the country’s progress but on the contributions made towards their personal extreme agenda.

    That system must fail IMO.

  17. FEMA, under dumbass dubya with an able assist from disgraced Ollie North was to have spent its time and monies rounding up Central Americans and keeping them in detention centers. Fortunately for all Americans, North reputation was still too toxic so his dream of detaining massive amounts of deplorables never cam t i fruition.

  18. JoAnn and Marv cited “Trump” in their posts so I will too.
    Guess who: (partly plagiarized)
    Don’t forget Trump
    Bought the Trump Plaza hotel for $400 million, repossessed by the bank. Bought his yacht for $29 million, repossessed by the bank. Built 4 casinos at the cost of $3 billion. Filed for bankruptcy, went out of business, stiffed contractors and employees. Trump bankrupt Puerto Rico golf course, leaving Puerto Rico with $33 million in debt and now he’s stiffing Puerto Rico when the U.S. citizens there need humanitarian help. Started Trump Airlines. Never made a profit. Planes and helicopters repossessed by Citi Bank. Trump Mortgage, Trump University, Trump Vodka and Trump Steaks all went out of business. He owes money to contractors, Russia, China and the Zionist. He would ask the global elites if he can be president of the U.S and deal weapons to Saudi Arabia, bomb Syria, North Korea and Iran, repeal Obamacare leaving 23 million uninsured and give tax breaks to his gang of jet travel thieves so he can pay off his debts at the expense of fellow Americans. He doesn’t care if he’s called a sellout and a traitor. And yes! taxpayers will have to pay for his bankruptcies. Democracy did not give us this crazy insecure manipulated desperate buffoon. Hang him upside down by his ankles at Trump Tower. Crazy, crooked Trump. Don’t forget the crooks he brought into the Administration disgracing us, the American People, worldwide. What did his Electoral College gambit cost the U.S. Treasury? ALERT::::this NIT-WIT wingnut has the NUCLEAR code!

  19. I rarely watch “live” tv. I tape the nightly news and watch it after the fact because of THE COMMERCIALS. How can you possibly be informed when everything on tv is cutting away from commercials? A 30 minute broadcast is actually 23 minutes long. That’s 7 minutes of commercials for every 30 minutes and most of those are pharmaceutical advertisements.

    We live in sound bite hell.

    My news feed comes from links that I save on my computer like this one. I read the news and probably pay way too much for my broadcast tv because it’s not over the air like the old days and I avoid most of the channels like fox spews. But the last 40 yrs, our culture is based on tv watching! Reality tv has now come to the white house and we’re all the victims.

    I think we all have been waiting for Mueller to get that clown out of OUR house and have outrage fatigue. How in the world did this happen? I do know that if one has a job, one is too tired to do much of anything but watch tv, go to bed and work and rinse and repeat. We’re doomed.

  20. OMG,

    “ALERT::::this NIT-WIT wingnut has the NUCLEAR code!”

    Thanks for the warning. I live in the old massive junior high school that’s been converted into condos. Outside on the entrance to the building is an old,civil defense, metal sign designating the building as a bomb shelter.

    Since I’m living on the third floor, I’m not so sure that’s such a safe spot. What about the library on the first floor? I’m not just kidding.

  21. OMG,

    It’s possible, at this point in time, a nuclear exchange might be Trump’s “trump card” for staying in power. Until he’s examined, how can we ever know? What would be the Democratic Party’s answer to that scenario? Surely not Hillary Clinton.

  22. Is this just a ’64 political, satirical, black comedy or possibly a prophecy concerning America’s future?

    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:

    Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb, more commonly known as Dr. Strangelove, is a 1964 political satire black comedy film that satirizes the Cold War fears of a nuclear conflict between the Soviet Union and the United States. The film was directed, produced, and co-written by Stanley Kubrick, stars Peter Sellers and George C. Scott, and features Sterling Hayden, Keenan Wynn, and Slim Pickens. Production took place in the United Kingdom. The film is loosely based on Peter George’s thriller novel Red Alert (1958).

    The story concerns an UNHINGED United States Air Force general who orders a first strike nuclear attack on the Soviet Union. It follows the President of the United States, his advisers, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and a Royal Air Force (RAF) officer as they try to recall the bombers to prevent a nuclear apocalypse. It separately follows the crew of one B-52 bomber as they try to deliver their payload.

    Dr. Strangelove is considered one of cinema’s best comedies. In 1989, the United States Library of Congress included it in the first group of films selected for preservation in the National Film Registry. It was listed as number three on AFI’s 100 Years…100 Laughs list.

  23. To all,

    Behind his obvious MASK OF SANITY, is a very sick and dangerous President, the most dangerous leader in the world at this time and I am sure Senator Coker, still Head of the Foreign Relations Committee in the Senate, would agree with me.

    With the direction that he is going, Trump is getting very close to putting us in a “position of no return.”

    Trump is out of touch with reality, he has to be stopped, no matter the costs. Pence and Bannon have heped create a THREE-HEADED MONSTER.

  24. Speaking of America’s problems, past, present and future, I have a confession to make. I have never been a fan of Corker since he was mayor of Chattanooga and later senator who joined with the then Tennessee governor in threatening to withhold what they had promised Volkswagen to locate in Chattanooga because the UAW was in the process of unionizing the workforce there. They demanded that Volkswagen (a German based company who had union members on their corporate boards per German legislation) put an end to such attempts of the UAW to unionize their workforce. It worked. At the time I blogged Corker harshly, calling Chattanooga “Scab City,” etc. I also have not liked his record in the Senate since then as he voted mechanically with the Republican caucus, and in spite of his current spat with Herr Trump, the record shows he has voted for Trump positions since.
    However, I am in a forgiving mood with Corker’s stand against the Orange Menace, and since Democrats and a number of voiceless Republicans are clearly of the view that Trump has proven to be unfit for office, it is time for a bipartisan vote for impeachment in the House and a trial thereafter in the Senate. If the House impeaches, I think Corker and other Republican senators will vote to send Trump back to his tower where he can ponder his alternatives to bankruptcy in one or more of his businesses. Our task? Take Corker’s story to members of the House, which is where impeachment starts. The petition should be bipartisan, since Trump is neither a Democrat nor a Republican but rather a narcissist who cannot see beyond the end of his ego while looking in the pool.
    When you have a skin cancer, you have it excised; and when you have an ogre at the helm of the ship of state, politically speaking, you remove him from the ship of state and put him on a raft in the swamp he promised to drain but which is in overflow stage.
    So, sorry, Senator Corker. Keep up the good work. The survival of our democracy may depend upon it, and tomorrow may be too late. I am glad to see a Republican do something for his country for a change. Tell it like it is, Bob, and don’t worry about Trump’s tirades since the world is discovering that the emperor has no clothes even though the emperor in his narissistic haze of his otherworld has yet to discover his own nudity or that he is not God.

  25. Gerald,

    “It is time for a bipartisan vote for impeachment in the House and a trial thereafter in the Senate. If the House impeaches, I think Corker and other Republican senators will vote to send Trump back to his tower where he can ponder his alternatives to bankruptcy in one or more of his businesses. Our task? Take Corker’s story to members of the House, which is where impeachment starts. The petition should be bipartisan, since Trump is neither a Democrat nor a Republican but rather a narcissist who cannot see beyond the end of his ego while looking in the pool.”

    Right on. Trump needs to be attacked from all sides. It needs to be now, not later.

    We have to find the right vehicles for the attack. The present NGO’s are not the answer. Just look at their record of success.

  26. Talking about what we understand: Poverty and struggling just to survive is where I am right now as an aging retired female citizen and which is something many of us understand and can talk about. Got my Masters at IUPUI in 2009, just smack dab in the middle of the “crash” or whatever it’s called now….Waste of time and money, but we all have lost opportunity experiences… I digress: Every single day not only do some of us have to wonder how to make our social security stretch further and further we have to also listen to a continual barrage of “cut this”, “get rid of that” which, granted, affects us all, but puts the elderly, poor, and physically limited in the unattractive category of “We don’t need or want you.” We can do without you.”
    Now, having said all of that, another thing I understand is how to wade through all the crap that is out there such as CNN, and all of that ilk who have truly let us all down when we needed them the most. They are all the puppets of the nut-in-charge and he knows it and plays them like a fiddle. I have chosen those professionals who, I believe cut to the chase and at least leave me feeling a little more tolerant about the mess we are presently experiencing day by day, minute by minute. Fareed Zakaria, Rachel Maddow, PBS, Charlie Rose, NPR, and for just a touch of humor in all this madness, John Oliver…..that’s about it. As usual I respect and value all comments and especially Sheila Kennedy, our host, for allowing this forum to exist.

  27. Trump also understands another thing: voters in FL and TX, where FEMA concentrated its best relief efforts, also mostly vote Republican. Puerto Rico, on the other hand, mostly votes Democratic, and its native residents are also brown. One other thing: San Juan’s mayor, a woman, dared to criticize fat little Donnie. What about these facts do the rest of us fail to grasp? It would be shocking if a quality relief effort were carried out for Puerto Rico under the circumstances.

  28. WOW! ” You know, people talk about what they can understand.” One sentence, and that is why we are where we are today.

  29. Per Havel via Marv – When Einstein was asked the most important attribute one could bring to the table to insure success and the questioner suggested intelligence, Einstein, one of our most intelligent humans ever, demurred. He said it was imagination. I am trying to imagine an Oval Office sans Trump.

  30. Keep imagining. Then think of what Gerald said earlier about what we need to do and in what order and who is best able to organize that part. Also our email may not be secure. Yes, that sounds crazy but think what/ who were dealing with. Remember the Resistance in Norway. It was mostly a bunch of kids with support from community leaders. My Norwegian friend grew up on a farm where they were self sufficient . Most folks now don’t grow food, build things etc.

  31. If talking about what we understand got us into this mess, think what an awful predicament we would be in IF WE TALKED ABOUT WHAT WE DON’T UNDERSTAND…which I think is what really got us into this mess…which is only a dank and crumbling way station on the way to where it (talking about what we DON’T understand) ultimately will take us.

  32. Natacha Puerto Ricans do not get to vote for prez and they have no real voice in the government because they are not afforded statehood and probably never will for the very reasons you set forth. 🙂

  33. OMG- a correction if I may- The story of Drumpf bankrupting a golf course and sticking Puerto Rico for the 32 mil is not exactly true. Drumpf took over duties and could not save the club or reverse losses.

    http://www.snopes.com/trump-puerto-rico-golf-course/

    The very last paragraph lays out what happened. At that time Puerto Rico’s national debt was over a hundred billion so 33 mil was a small part. Drumpf did not make the any of the bonds on the course. He made some money from management.

  34. What was talked about regarding Donald Trump and his marital, sexual affairs, divorces, bogus business deals, bankruptcies, restarting businesses with family money, destroying other businesses by not paying them and his other publicized personal antics for over 30 years on the news that could not be understood? We appear to be continuing to do nothing but talk about it now and it has reached a level where talk may kill us. Understand?

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