July 24, 2016

100 Words -- Conspiracy Theory

I’m going to dig out my tinfoil hat and indulge in a little conspiracy theorizing. Issue One: the motivation behind the leaked DNC emails. Factoid: Russia is widely seen as the email hacker. They presumably passed them on to WikiLeaks. Speculation: There are those on the far left who wouldn’t mind seeing a Trump victory, the idea being it takes a shit storm to create a progressive utopia. The Trump-Putin bromance has been widely reported. Not so widely known is the role Russian oligarchs have played in bankrolling many of Trump’s business ventures. Bottom Line: Beware of leakers bearing gifts.

July 23, 2016

100 Words -- The Return of the King

Ronald Reagan’s philosophy was to get government out of the way and unleash the genius of the American people. Donald Trump’s plan is to tell everyone to get out of his way while he unleashes the genius of Donald Trump: “I am the only one who can make America great again. … I alone can fix it.” Trump’s vision is less Ronald Reagan’s conservatism and more Benito Mussolini’s fascism: “It is the State which educates its citizens in civic virtue, gives them a consciousness of their mission and welds them into unity.” And we all know for Trump, “L’etat c’est moi.”

July 22, 2016

100 Words -- Somewhere Out There

Before I die I’d like to see an honest-to-by-God UFO. I wouldn’t care if anyone believed me. The important thing is that I would know what I saw … something beyond the ordinary limits of what is thought possible. It’s religion by another name, I guess. There lies within us a desire to bear witness to something greater than mere humanity. We are programmed to receive. The problem is that nothing seems to be sending. Seeing a UFO would not be proof of God’s existence. It would be an affirmation of the unknown unknowns that still await humanity … somewhere out there.

July 21, 2016

100 Words -- Fear Itself

The American dream is based on the belief that tomorrow will be better. Yes, we have problems. There are people who would do us harm. But this is America. We don’t give up or give in. If you listen to the Republicans, that America is dying, brought to its knees by Barack Obama. Hillary Clinton and hordes of Muslims and Mexicans are poised to finish the job. Franklin Roosevelt said the only thing we have to fear is fear itself. Donald Trump has made fear the central pillar of his presidential campaign. This is not the way America got great.

July 20, 2016

100 Words -- Turn The Page

Working on a television set as a veteran, I became acutely aware of how old we Vietnam War vets are getting. Soon we will be joining the veterans of World War II and Korea on the endangered species list. Right now there are millions of us. Twenty years from now there will be thousands. Eventually the headline will read, “Last Living Vietnam Vet Dies.” The lone spark firing up memories of that time will be extinguished, the synapses illuminating the sights and sounds of the war gone forever silent, our last testament for the history books written. Turn the page.

July 17, 2016

100 Words -- Amateur Hour

Before you become Chief Executive, you are the CEO of a national startup known as MyCampaign. You must hire staff, find offices, build a business plan, and get the messaging in synch. For a man running as a successful businessman Trump has failed miserably at this. His state campaign organizations are still mostly vapor-ware. The well-oiled machine in this race belongs to Hillary Clinton. The good press Trump gets as an outsider is offset by the amateur-hour mistakes his campaign makes, the vice-presidential roll-out being a prime example. Making it up as you go along only gets you so far.

July 16, 2016

100 Words -- The Instant Terrorist

The truck driver of Nice was a drinker, a small-time crook prone to mental health issues, and going through a nasty divorce. He was not was an observant Muslim, yet there is always the possibility that he found the final reason to go on a rampage on some extremist web site. ISIL has claimed him as “a soldier of the Islamic state,” but there’s no evidence to support that. He was a disturbed individual who carried out a terrifying act, but does that make him a terrorist? No one knows, just like no one knows how you fight that war.