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Government Shut Down = Integrity Shut Down

Webster’s defines the word Integrity as 1.) the quality of being honest and fair and 2.) the state of being complete or whole.  We are clearly and utterly lacking leaders with an iota of integrity left.  One segment of our government has created an internal value system, comparable to a petulant child’s, where blocking President Obama’s agenda at all costs is king.

Ridiculously immature, self-serving, ignorant politicians would rather let people’s lives unravel and forego medical and Gov pictechnological advances to further their own short-sighted, narrow agendas to bring down the other “team,” reducing us to a sports game. Over time they won’t win.  No matter if people choose to watch Fox News and listen to Rush Limbaugh & Co., reality IS different.  The economy IS getting better.  American demographics ARE getting browner.  LGBT individuals ARE speaking up and getting the respect and rights they reserve.  We do have a black president, and he kicks a$$.  He’s not perfect, but he IS a rarefied individual whom evokes respect and admiration the world over due to his collaborative leadership style and intellect – but if you watch Fox News and Sean Hannity, listen to Rush Limbaugh, etc., you wouldn’t know that – but then, if you watch or listen to those programs you wouldn’t want to believe that.

Prior to the shut down, our family was effected by the sequester.  My husband is working on solar-powered fabric, which could dramatically change how we do many things.  It could allow our military to be more nimble and mobile, using less resources – no need to haul around heavy generators through dangerous territories – tents could provide their energy.  Backpacks could provide energy for the military as well as civilian campers, hikers, etc.  Their second government-funded grant was denied because of the sequester.  They are now looking for funding elsewhere, but I know first-hand this nonsense has real negative impacts.  My heart goes out to all of the individuals not receiving the medical care they need, the kids who are missing meals and childcare (Head Start) and the parents who barely make ends meet who are having to send kids to live with relatives so they can maintain their minimum wage-paying jobs.

I cannot believe we have such a$$holes in positions of power who really are holding our country hostage under the guise of the debt ceiling because they can’t have their way.  Healthcare reform legislation passed and when opposed the Supreme Court deemed it constitutional.  And even though they can’t stop healthcare reform – it’s in, they will vindictively use whatever power they have or can buy to thwart actions by Democrats and the Administration at any costs to the American people.  And what are they trying to accomplish?  It’s hollow revenge fueled by conservative extremist megalomaniacs jeering each other on so feverishly that they don’t even realize they’re not simply hurting Democrats, they’re hurting ALL Americans and they will negatively impact some of they’re own friends and family in the process.  No matter what our political affiliation, we’re all connected.  And we all need a helping hand at one time or another, be it a government supplement or a bank loan.

Here’s a brief New York Times article by Thomas Friedman.  He succinctly poses that democracy itself is at risk given the calculated defiance of the Republican Party and specifically their Tea Party affiliates.

And another interesting article:

Illustration by Oliver Munday

Above the fray

All mentally ready for the holidays thanks to perfect chilly temps and a gorgeous Fall backdrop, my Thanksgiving weekend request was to see the new film “Lincoln.”  I have a natural love of history, but just don’t have enough context to grasp the importance of many figures and events.  Abraham Lincoln is one of those figures.  I have basic knowledge of him, but haven’t really understood who he was, what he’s remembered for and honestly have been perplexed by the reverence he renders seemingly without criticism.  Well, first of all … in the movie, Daniel Day-Lewis rocks it.  I mean, seriously.  He nailed Abraham Lincoln and will earn the Best Actor Oscar, for sure.  I walked out of the movie feeling like I’d for-real seen Abraham Lincoln, with all his quirks, charisma and ability to focus on what was most important for the greater good.

Although I can point out some spotty acting I’m surprised made it through editing, Steven Spielberg did an excellent job of conveying the political environment of the day, which is really not much different from ours today.  And to my surprise, ole’ Honest Abe knew how to play the game and was shameless in doing so to achieve his goals, which in this chapter of his life was abolishing slavery AND ending the civil war. Bravo to all involved for bringing the essence of Abraham Lincoln to life in a way that those of us living 150 years later are able to better understand and appreciate what made him so special.