Monday, July 30, 2018


The face of the terrified child clinging to her father’s legs after being reunited with him.  Separating kids from their parents at the border is cruel and inhumane!

The new Prime Minister-to be of Pakistan, Imran Khan, posing in skimpy briefs in his earlier cricket star playboy days.  Past history aside, if he can lead a civilian government that reduces corruption and benefits the lives of his people, his election will be a good thing!

A family looking at the smoking remains of their residence destroyed by a wildfire.  The feeling of helplessness in the face of nature’s fury is palpable!

Geraint Thomas, the first Welshman to win the Tour de France, crossing the finish line.  Despite crashes, doping, unruly crowds and the specter of a tainted sport hanging over his head, a great accomplishment!

As Zimbabwe goes to the polls Robert Mugabe, old and out of power, mouthing off that he has been treated unfairly.  Not to worry, an unrepentant bad guy who’ll be dead soon!

A smiling CBS boss Les Moonves, under fire for sexual misconduct, in happier days.  Should he step aside while the allegations are investigated?  No reason he should be treated differently than the many others who have been charged!

Have a nice day!

Monday, July 23, 2018

Unresolved Issues!

I notice that I don’t have easy answers for some things.  For example:

I like that the younger, progressive Democratic voters are active and gaining strength.  I am concerned that their strident, uncompromising positions will turn off other Democrats and Independents and a chance to win the 2018 midterms will be lost.

My knee jerk reaction is to hate anything Trump says or does.  Having said that, and not moderating my disgust, I do think that starting a conversation with guys like Putin or Kim has merit.  Turning the traditional diplomatic process on its head, shaking up establishment thinking, may not be a bad thing.

Either/or thinking isn’t useful:
            Charter schools vs public schools.
            Trade unions vs no unions.
            Free trade vs tariffs
            Immigration/migration vs closed borders
            Medicaid vs no more handouts

The list goes on . . .

Compromises aren’t inherently bad.  I look for what I call “A mutual overlap of self interest.”  Think of two circles.  Separated from each other they are competitors.  When put together so that part of each overlaps with the other, they can work toward common goals without losing their independence.

Like it or not, we live in a “What’s in it for me?” world.  Recognizing this reality isn’t a bad thing.  It allows me to acknowledge and retain my self interest and allow for yours as well.

Check it out!

Monday, July 16, 2018


The pundits are engaged in group apoplexy this morning.  About what?  The Trump-Putin meeting and what Trump had to say about it. 

Regarding Russian interference in our 2016 election, he threw the U.S. intelligence community and its conclusions about what happened under the bus and sided with Putin.  And he did so standing next to Putin after they met in Helsinki.  He gave Putin a pass on not only the election, but everything:  Crimea, Ukraine, Syria, etc.

The only thing surprising about him behaving this way is that anyone is surprised.  Trump is predictable.  After all, this was the end of a week in which he trashed our allies, NATO, the E.U., Theresa May, etc.  It is not possible to predict the specifics of what destruction he will sow, both at home and abroad, it is predictable that he’ll do something that creates the group apoplexy we’re seeing today.

One has to assume that he does this on purpose.  I doubt he figures it all out in advance; it is more spontaneous than that.  I don’t doubt that he revels in the chaos that is generated by his actions.  So the pundits and the rest of us feed into his game.  That too is predictable!

Friday, July 06, 2018


I read a lot – newspapers, magazines, online reporting.  As I go through these news sources I’ve noticed that there are some stories I skip, that don’t interest me.  What, I’ve asked myself, do these uninteresting pieces have in common?  One answer is “speculation.”  I’m not interested in what someone guesses might be going on or might happen.  For example:

Speculation about what Donald Trump thinks or why he may be thinking this, that or the other thing, is a waste of time.  Trying to rationally analyze what is an irrational process is a ‘don’t bother’ for me.

Speculation about what will happen in an upcoming election isn’t worth my time.  Wait until it happens and then talk about it.

Speculation related to the judicial process is usually boring.  What a judge or jury is going to conclude is just an opinion, often uninformed, by someone who probably doesn’t know any more about the subject than I do.

Speculation about rumors of upcoming trades in any sport can be titillating but is usually off the mark and of no value to either a casual or avid fan.

Speculation about the weather is useless.  Its either going to rain or it isn’t.  Its either going to be really hot (or cold) or it isn’t.  Preparations based on weather forecasting might be important if a hurricane is headed your way, but those events are the exception, so believing what your friendly weatherman has to say is a crapshoot.

Finally, speculation about the financial world is not only a waste of time, its risky.  If you think you can guess what the market is going to do tomorrow because of some tip you’ve heard or what some ‘expert’ thinks is going to happen, you better be prepared to flush your assets down the toilet.  Follow my lead, and don’t pay attention to such speculative stuff.

Wednesday, July 04, 2018


If you like to be entertained by watching TV you are, indeed, in the middle of a Golden Age.  The demand for shows is insatiable.  A Golden Age for talent to express itself.  Writers.  Directors.  Actors.  And all the professionals less visible but just as important.

“The Americans” is finished, but left behind an outstanding legacy.

“Billions” ended its season and I can’t wait for more.

“Westworld” is also between seasons.  Incomprehensible at times, but with an addictive allure.

“The Handmaid’s Tale” is disturbing in the extreme, but brilliantly done.

“Fauda” from Israel is a winner.

I like watching some shows from the past:  “Law & Order: SVU,” “House,” “Homicide,” “The Twilight Zone,” and more.

“Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown” is brilliant and will be missed.  Suggestion: Watch shows that have already aired, even if you’ve seen them before.

“Orange is the New Black” starts again this month.

“The Bridge,” both the U.S. and Danish version is a winner.

And on and on.  Yes, a Golden Age.