Monday, July 31, 2017

They Love Globalism and I Know Why

Wladyslaw Szpilman
Photo: Wikipedia
I was seated recently at a table of educated Romanians, late twenties and early thirties, lawyers, businessmen, teachers, engineers, doctors, and lobbyists for various globalist non-profits in D.C.

We were celebrating the success of Romanian-Americans, a diaspora composed of individuals who belonged to my generation that escaped communism and others who were recent arrivals and successful entrepreneurs, people who won the citizenship lottery, or remained in the U.S., following their education in Ivy League schools.

Romanians are generally very smart and make exceptional students – it is easy for them to get an education abroad, especially in the U.S., on full merit scholarships.

I watched and listened to my interlocutors speak with reverence about socialism, communism, and the need to have a communist global government and global citizenship in order to promote the rights and freedoms of all people, no matter where they live.

These young people have not experienced the tragedy of having to grow up under communism; they only knew what was taught to them by teachers and books written by academic socialists. By the time Ceausescu’s tyrannical regime was gone, they were small children, babies, or not yet born.

Their parents chose to shelter them from the horrors of communist life; they grew up in a relative free and abundant life. Democracy to them was how to make a quick enterprise at the expense of generous grants and investors. Opportunity knocked very hard and they responded quickly – adaptation of the fittest.

Grandparents perhaps spoke with nostalgia about the times when they were paid so little and had no freedoms but a cement roof was assured over their heads and a stale loaf of bread on the table.

The new crony capitalism and politically-corrupt “free” society that ignored the elderly and their plight of continued poverty scared their grandparents so much that they wanted the welfare safety of socialism back.

“Yes, we are free now to say whatever we want but nobody listens, nobody pays attention to us,” said one eighty-something lady I interviewed on my last trip.

I listened to one teacher from California who was bemoaning the fact that she was going to miss her favorite CNN personality, Fareed Zacharias. I really had to bite my tongue into silence.

I can understand how these young people have been brainwashed into globalism by the western academia and by their lack of a reference point to the suffering that their families had to endure for decades under Soviet Marxism and the leadership of the “Maverick” Ceausescu who brought his people to the brink of disaster.

It is for this reason that Romania had such a hard time catching up with other nations that were former Soviet satellites under the Iron Curtain. Most of these countries had better living conditions for their people and amassed huge debts to the west that were eventually forgiven once communism “fell” in 1989.

Romania’s “Maverick” president, Ceausescu, paid back every cent to the west by stealing as much food that he could possibly steal before starving his people to death in the streets. When communism fell, Romania owed precious little to the west, there was negligible debt to be forgiven. But the people’s standard of living was so low, and the infrastructure so poor, they had a much harder road to catch up to prosperity.

Young people, I learned, think that stories of starvation and man’s inhumanity to man are just stories, nobody in his right mind would mistreat their fellow man. Life is just a bowl of cherries, there are no pits inside. Besides, history and truth have been greatly sanitized.

My breakfast under communism, almost every day, was a piece of dark bread with prune jam made by grandma and the occasional butter, if we were lucky to find any in the perennially empty “laptaria,”(dairy shop) where we had to stand in line as early as we could, even though the store did not open until 6 a.m. The line would wind around the block and there was never enough milk, butter, or cheese delivered to satisfy all the customers waiting.

Socialism, like you see in the today’s starved Venezuela, is not very good at basic economics and planning based on supply and demand. Socialists are good at propaganda and lies and centralized control of the population.

Prunes were plentiful to make jam but sugar was a different story. Grandma, like any other shopper, was entitled to only so much sugar a month on rationing cards. We all pooled the rationed sugar and grandma was able to make prune or sour cherry jam for everybody.

The scene in the 2002 Polansky movie, The Pianist, is fascinating and highly emotional in many ways, not the least of which is the utter joy of tasting something again that seemed impossible to find. In some ways it reminds me how I felt when I opened the first jar of prune marmalade or jam of the season. On my last visit, I actually brought back with me four sealed jars made by cousin Ana.

Szpilman, the pianist in the movie, hiding from the Nazis in the attic of a bombed-out house, is discovered one day by an SS officer while he is desperately trying to open a can of pickles with a fireplace poker and a shovel.

Closing his eyes, knowing what his fate was going to be, Szpilman is surprised by the sympathetic SS officer who is interrogating him about his profession, asking him to play something on the piano in the room, instead of killing him.

The beautiful classical music reverberates in the dilapidated and frigid room, while his warm breath and flying fingers on the piano keys are the only evidence that he is still alive, transported on a realm of beauty, joy, and hope that touches all senses and does not need translation in any language.

The officer is listening intently, mesmerized by this “Jude” as he calls him disrespectfully. He leaves and returns unexpectedly with a loaf of bread, a can opener, and a large serving of jam wrapped in waxed paper. As a last gesture of humanity, he hands the “Jude” his warm coat.

Szpilman licks his fingers of jam, with his eyes closed, in total culinary ecstasy. He is someone who barely survived, who had not eaten anything so delicious in many months; the officer wants to know his name so that he can listen to his music on Polish radio later. The Russians were approaching and the liberation of Poland was imminent.

House at 223 Niepodlegiosci Avenue
in Warsaw where Captain Hosenfeld found Szpilman
Photo: Wikipedia
In this true story, the real Wladyslaw Szpilman, pianist and composer, searched for the one enemy officer who found kindness in his heart and had spared him. Szpilman eventually learned in 1951 the SS officer’s name, Wilm Hosenfeld. Despite his efforts to rescue him, Hosenfeld died in a Stalingrad prison camp in 1952 after seven years of captivity.

I wonder how young people would feel if they were forced to suffer such deprivation of food and freedom in a war or in a tyrannical government like communism, theocracy, or fascism? Would they still be so willing to be multicultural globalists?

Thursday, July 27, 2017

American Civil War Museum and Historic Tredegar

Historic Tredegar
Photo: Wikipedia
Nestled on the bank of the James River in Richmond, Virginia, near the American Civil War Museum, the Tredegar Iron Works began operating in 1837. The name Tredegar honored engineers Rhys Davies and his crew who were recruited from the Tredegar Mills in Wales. The proximity to railroads and canal boats made this location ideal.

On this very hot and lazy Saturday afternoon, with temperatures upwards of 100 degrees Fahrenheit, locals were sunbathing on the beach nearby.

First producing iron for railroads and then cannon, Tredegar Enterprise did not rise to fame until 1842 when the U.S. Navy ordered 100 cannon. Within eighteen years, Tredegar became the largest ironworks in the South, an important factor in the Confederate decision to move its capital from Montgomery, Alabama, to Richmond, Virginia in 1861.

Photo: Wikipedia
The American Civil War Museum is located in the Gun Foundry which was built in 1861. The opening salvo on April 12, 1861 at Ft. Sumter was fired by a cannon cast at Tredegar Iron Works. By the end of the American Civil War, Tredegar cast more than 1,160 cannon.

Tredegar also made iron products, ammunition for the Spanish American War, WWI, and WWII, eventually closing in 1986 due to slow demand for iron goods which were replaced by steel.

Gen. Joseph Reid Anderson
Photo: Wikipedia
Joseph Reid Anderson bought out various stockholders and became the sole owner of Tredegar in 1860 when it was the fourth largest ironworks in the country.

A secessionist, Anderson wanted to unite the South and requested a Brigadier General appointment in the Confederate Army which he held until the summer of 1862. At that time, he resigned his commission as he was more valuable to the confederacy as leader of the iron works.

After the federal government confiscated the Confederate war industry, Anderson persuaded President Andrew Johnson to pardon him and to return his property which had been confiscated. He ran Tredegar until his death in 1892.

One of the largest employers in Virginia, Tredegar had recruited workers from Great Britain, Germany, the North, and even hired slaves who were trained as blacksmiths, teamsters, boatmen, and skilled ironworkers.

According to the American Civil War Museum archives, “In 1847, the white workers who usually held these skilled jobs, demanded that Anderson stop bringing in slaves and went on strike. Anderson fired the striking white workers, recruited new workers, and placed slaves in yet more sought-after positions.”

The white labor force shrank between 1861 and 1864 from 86 percent to 25 percent due to Confederate draft and the resignation of Union workers. Until its closing, Tredegar employed between 700 and 1,000 men.

A January 1862 list of “negroes” hired at Tredegar shows 131 slaves and four “free negroes.” The slaves were “housed, fed, clothed, and provided medical care. They earned cash by working overtime or exceeding their daily quota; several bought their own or family members’ freedom. Free black earned the same wages as white workers.” (American Civil War Museum archives)

Abraham Lincoln and his son
Photo: Wikipedia
The outdoor exhibits surrounding Historic Tredegar and the American Civil War Museum display a modern bronze statue of a child sitting on a bench by a man, Abraham Lincoln and his son, with the words engraved in stone on a wall behind them, “To bind up the nation’s wounds;” three bronze cupolas from the Virginia State Penitentiary that stood not far from Tredegar and was torn down in 1992, making room for Ethyl Corporation’s laboratories; various Tredegar tools and furnaces; an overshot waterwheel like the many that produced the mechanical energy needed by Tredegar’s furnaces and machinery from 1837 until after the American Civil War.

The waterwheel ran with water from the Kanawha Canal, guided to the top of the wheel and spilled over each bucket, causing the wheel to turn. As it turned, a wind box (a small fan) forced air into the furnace to stoke the fire.

The Historic Tredegar is operated by the non-profit American Civil War Center and the Richmond National Battlefield Park of the National Park Service. Three stories talk about wartime Richmond, its government, the military, refugees, prisoners, the wounded, and locals whose lives were displaced from 1861-1865 by a civil war that brought national attention to places like Cold Harbor, Gaines’ Mill, Malvern Hill, New Market Heights, and transformed farms into battlefields.

The National Park Service displays cannon, memorabilia, limber wagons with six-team of horses that pulled cannon, drums, letters, a well-worn Confederate flag carried in battle by the Richmond regiment, and narrates other interesting facts about southern life, the role of slavery, spies such as Elizabeth Van Lew, most famous Union spy, and other sympathizers who cooperated with the Union. There were Union spies in Richmond just as there were Confederate spies in Washington.

Wealthy Richmonders ran a spy network, “the best-organized one in the Confederacy, utilized safe houses, codes, signals, and clever hiding places, as well as smuggled newspapers, personal letters, and access to Confederate high command.” (National Park museum archives)

Richmond’s 1860 population of 38,000 grew to 80,000 due to the war and the cost of living rose through the roof while housing space became scarce. People had to flee in order to survive. Even a coal cellar was used as living quarters.

Women had to take unsavory jobs in order to survive, even jobs generally done by men. Some turned to prostitution or selling writing paper, sewing kits, and small pies in the streets.

Children had a difficult life in war-torn Richmond. Older ones joined gangs, bullying blacks and poor whites alike. Younger children who sought refuge in Richmond were petty thieves who vandalized property and created general disturbance. Some escaped to Union lines.

Well-to-do Richmonders sent their girls to boarding schools or to live with relatives out of harm’s way. Others were hired to sign Confederate Treasury notes. Poor girls worked in factories and stores. Upper class boys were sent to military schools and became officers.

By 1860, Richmond had five black churches and many black charities. Blacks worked as “domestic and day laborers, but also in tobacco factories, coal mines, flour mills, ironworks, bakeries, construction sites, hotels, and print shops. Free blacks dominated barbering, blacksmiths, street vendors, musicians, and cooks.” (National Park archives)

Blacks and free blacks had to carry passes or free papers at all times, an indignity to the human spirit. Richmond’s war chaos provided opportunities for some to escape to the Union lines.

Massive stonework on the first floor and brick walls on the second floor of the Historic Tredegar show evidence of the woolen mill that burned in 1854 on whose foundation the ironworks building was reconstructed.

The National Park Service describes the atmosphere in Richmond before the Virginia Convention voted to secede on April 17, 1861. “Although some Richmonders were passionate secessionists, many immigrants, merchants, and politicians had little enthusiasm for the Confederacy. Slaves and free blacks waited to see where their advantage lay.” (National Park museum archives)

Richmond became the Union prisoners’ destination. Officers were kept in Libby Prison. Enlisted men, upwards of eight thousand, were held prisoners on Belle Isle on James River. Lew and other Union sympathizers helped officers escape from Libby Prison.

The American Civil War Museum displays on two floors historical accounts and the time line of the Civil War. Films present evidence, facts, and opinions about the war that had torn a nation apart and caused so many casualties on both sides.

Interestingly, the museum presents the causes of the American Civil War as four possible choices and invites the visitor to decide by making careful insinuations:

a.     Disagreement over Federal vs. State Powers

b.     Competing Economies and Cultures (Industrial vs. Farming)

c.      Westward Expansion

d.     Slavery

The U.S. population in 1790 was four million, including 800,000 enslaved Africans in the North and the South. By 1860, the population grew to 31 million, 4 million of which were slaves concentrated in the South.

“While the average value of enslaved women, children, and the elderly was $750 a person, a single field hand could sell for $1,500 (about $25,000 in today’s dollars). The market value of slaves totaled nearly $3 billion, exceeding other U.S. assets such as railroads and factories.” (American Civil War Museum archives)

It is hard to understand man’s inhumanity to man but human trafficking and slavery continue to this day around the world and is swept up under the rug. Few people actually mention it or seriously try to stop it.

The true cost of the American Civil War was tallied at the end by taking into account soldiers lost to disease, battle wounds, and injuries. According to the museum archives, there were “10,455 skirmishes and recorded battles which resulted in over one million casualties (killed, wounded, missing in action, captured, or sick).” Survivors had to live with amputated limbs, depression, and persistent disease which forever changed their quality of life.

The museum had been somewhat sanitized in its revisionist historical opinions presented as a “balanced way to explore the Union, Confederate, and African-American perspectives.” The causes of war, the war years, and its legacy, the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments to the U.S. Constitution in reference to freedom, citizenship, and equal protection were explored from different angles.

As we left the somber American Civil War Museum grounds, children’s laughter and playful beach banter echoed from the banks of the James River.





Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Obamacare Socialized Medicine Rationing and the Elderly

Healthcare is not a right, it is a service provided by doctors and nurses who went to school to learn how to care for a sick human being. And they expect to be compensated for their services. Surely you would not expect your mechanic who learned how to fix your car, repair it for free, because it is your right to have a running vehicle.

Health insurance is not a right either, it is also a service. Can you control what an insurance company does and what pricing systems they use? Can you control what government does now that they are in charge of your socialized health insurance and healthcare, including the 15-member death panel?

We know the Senate does not care about Americans’ health insurance premiums and the quality of their healthcare. If they did, they would not have passed without reading and then failed to repeal the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), socialized medicine under government control. Passed by Democrats in the dead of night, and deemed by the Supreme Court a tax, ACA became a burden for Americans who were mostly satisfied with their previous premiums and their healthcare delivery. Sure, there were improvements necessary but not an entire overhaul worth trillions.

What good is having a shiny insurance card that says you are entitled to Obamacare but that care is denied to you when doctors are not taking your insurance, the quality of care is very poor, procedures are denied due to rationing and age, and your deductibles shot through the roof?

Like most Americans, who saw their health insurance premiums skyrocket and their care worsen since 2010, I am confused why politicians are forcing this monstrosity called Obamacare on us. Congressmen have exempted themselves from Obamacare and are protected by their own private plans but the rest of us will eventually have to suffer under the socialized medicine of the type that sentenced baby Gard to death in the U.K.

Seniors are already treated like "units" in hospitals. My mom was recently the victim of Obamacare in one of the alleged best hospitals in Northern Virginia. She was kept solely on IV fluids for three days, even though she is skin and bones, so that she would not throw up and force doctors to give her the upper GI and endoscopy tests she needed. Instead, they treated her for a bladder infection which was not the reason why she had been brought to the ER - she was vomiting blood and had stroke level BP.  She was crying for solid food!

Her doctor explained to me that they could not do the upper GI and endoscopy because the radiology group located in the hospital gave priority to outpatients, unless an inpatient was currently bleeding and/or vomiting. She vomited but they ignored her. Was it because she is 85 years old and an Obamacare "unit" and not worth spending the money on, or was it because she is a legal immigrant?

She was starved for three days and her important medicines for conditions like blood pressure and dementia were not administered, causing a serious relapse in her physical and mental condition. This is medical abuse when you tell a patient that comes into the ER with serious symptoms that they cannot have procedures except on an outpatient basis at a later date and withhold important meds that they are currently on.

No amount of protests, complaints, or inquiries on my part made a difference. This is what happens under socialized medicine when bureaucrats who know best make life and death decisions over us and our loved ones.

Mom lived under the boot of communism and escaped to this country in her late forties. The communists stripped her of everything she had ever earned, owned, and saved, including her pension after 30 years of work. She was not even given my dad’s pension. She lived here for over three decades under relative freedom. It is sad that now, in her twilight years, she is made to suffer again and will die under the neglect of socialized medicine that allocates funds to more productive individuals. Mom was productive too in her younger years.

Little Charlie Gard lost his battle with socialized medicine rationing in the U.K. Those who are unable to protect themselves, children and the elderly, are the first victims of socialized and rationed medical care because they cannot defend themselves. The way we treat seniors, the weak, and the most vulnerable speaks volumes of our lack of civilization and compassion. We should protect wildlife and our habitat but it seems that we care more for minnows and polar bears than we do human beings.

Mom lost five pounds she could not afford to lose while in hospital care for three days. They were more worried that she might fall than her actual survival. She was not fed anything for three days except water and IV antibiotics. She was lucky to have gotten out with her life.

It is bad enough that some elderly are physically abused in nursing homes and/or neglected by underpaid and understaffed medical personnel; they must now suffer the indignity of denied hospital medical care in the rationing environment of Medicare and Medicaid that were shortchanged in order to help fund Obamacare, and by the scarcity of doctors and nurses created by Obamacare.

So much for the unaffordable Affordable Care Act that provides substandard medical care and offers expensive insurance premiums to Americans who are now faced with huge deductibles each year, possible loss of insurance, and fines by the IRS for non-compliance.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Dr. David Sponseller's Commentary to My Article, Things Have Changed Significantly in 40 Years

I usually don't get such glowing reviews but this one is special because I have never entertained the idea that my former home in MS would become a national landmark because I lived there. I remember how my "keep up with the Joneses" neighbors thought it was a bit outdated because it was sturdy and built in 1959, the year I was born. It's hard to find homes with six foot walls anymore and a tornado shelter in the garage. Dr. Gooch was quite excentric, his building plans were still in the hallway closet. I sold my home last year and I hope the new owners irritate my former next door neighbors as much as I irritated them, just to keep the tradition going.

Here is Dr. David Sponseller's comment to my latest article. Dr. Sponseller likes to go by the name Ironman because he is one of the best metallurgic engineers in the world with a Ph.D. in the field.

"Few Americans could write the brilliant analysis seen here. Every American should read it! Having escaped the jackboots and oppression of Communism, Ileana’s excitement about, and enthusiasm for America have steadily been eroded by the actions of liberals in government, academia, Hollywood and the media. Only a legal immigrant like Ileana could see the changes so clearly and express her fears so forcefully.

And few Americans could vouch for the accuracy of Ileana’s observations as I can. Having lived through WW-II and the booming 50’s and 60’s that followed I’ve seen the negative changes in our way of life. I well remember my brother and 14 million others of Tom Brokaw’s “Greatest Generation march off to war, and sadly the gold stars that appeared in the windows of many homes.

I fondly recall the high standards in the news and entertainment media when a radio announcer would never even say “Hell” or “damn” for fear of losing his broadcasting license, and the uplifting movies like “Going My Way” and “Mary Poppins” that were typical of our entertainment fare.

Before globalization I recall when a man’s factory salary supported his many children, with mom in the home, and he could expect a significant pay raise each year. I recall when the safest person in America was the baby in the womb, in contrast to the 61 million innocents that have been brutally murdered in the womb since 1973. I recall when nearly every black child was properly raised by having a father in the home, contrasted with the 72 percent now born to an unwed mother…..leading to a disordered family, supported forcefully by working taxpayers, and producing druggy members of gangs that often end up in prison.

I certainly remember when the sole mission of our schools was to teach the three R’s as well as possible, not to indoctrinate their charges with liberal social precepts. I lament the 1970’s when universities stopped operating women’s dorms as safe, wholesome homes-away-from home, instead irresponsibly letting the male students in without limit.

Ileana’s essay should be a wake-up call to every patriotic American who ruefully senses our vast decline from the golden days of the 1950’s and 1960’s and dreads the possibility that America should follow Europe on its certain path towards becoming a Muslim caliphate. For her stunning observations Ileana should be deemed an American hero and her homes in Mississippi and Virginia should be designated national historic landmarks. How blessed we are that Ileana left family and friends behind in Romania at age 20 and cast her lot in America!"

P.S. Thank you, Dr. Sponseller, you are a remarkable American. They don't make many more like you.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Things Have Changed Significantly in Forty Years

I so admired the freedom of the west – people could worship in peace, attend the university of their choice, travel wherever they wanted if they could afford to, police was there to protect and serve the locals, food was cheap, grocery stores were full, families were able to buy a home with a picket fence and pay it off before they retired, truth, hard work, and honor were qualities to be admired, the press was generally objective and covered the facts domestically and internationally, families raised their children to be patriotic citizens, and children respected their parents, teachers, elders, authority, and the law.

I could not wait to escape the oppressive communism of the Iron Curtain even though it meant leaving behind everything I’ve ever known and everybody I’ve ever loved. It did not matter that my new countrymen would see me as an inconvenient and tolerated member of the underclass, “Euro-trash” to be exact. If we came from Eastern Europe, we were all worthless gypsies or spies at best. But I knew deep down, if I was given the opportunity, I would prove that I was the best and the brightest.

After twenty-three hours of flying half-way around the world, I could have kissed the ground in New York when we landed, had it not been in the dead of winter, that’s how elated I was to be free. But a sense of dread, fear of the unknown, and trepidation were equally overwhelming.

My first photograph in the free world was that of a young and willowy woman smiling in the best outfit I owned, eating a boxed dinner out of a paper bag at JFK airport. I had 10 cents in my pocket which I debated whether I should save it for a phone call or to buy a bottle of coke.

It was not easy adjusting to life in the southern part of a vast country, the shining city on the hill that represented freedom to so many billions around the world. I was the envy of my home town because I was the one girl who got away from suffocating communism and I would be rich – wealth by association.

Poor people then defined rich by very murky standards, one being that dollars grew on trees, easily picked. But reality then was that dollars were earned with a minimum wage job, not in the welfare office of today where illegal immigrants waltz in and steal the hard-earned tax dollars of Americans who work every day and have no input where their money is spent. Bureaucrats and politicians know best. Their newly arrived fraudulent voters must be pacified through generous handouts at someone else’s expense. How else would they stay in office for decades?  Constituents who refuse to learn English are easy picking. They see the world as the Roman soldiers did – is there a pebble in their shoes?

Everybody dreamed of Dallas and the Ewings oil tycoons they saw on TV once a week for a magical hour of escape from the despotic reality of utopian communism. It did not take much to be rich in the definition of oppressed people who suffered so much under the boot of communism for so many decades.

Only in the revisionist history books of the brainwashed liberal minds is socialism something worthy of emulating – when asked what’s so good about it, they have no idea how to define socialism.

In the small southern town where I landed, the many churches fought over the occasional foreign student or defector – it was such a source of pride and joy to sponsor them and parade them every Sunday in church like a freedom prize to satisfy the flock that they have done their Christian duty to save lost souls from the clutches of communism and their atheistic emptiness. But not all victims of communism were atheists. Many worshipped God underground, away from the prying eyes of communists.

The few immigrants and poor foreign students were grateful for any help but they had their own faith and wished to keep their religion not convert to something else. The locals, who could not understand how anybody else was not Baptist, Presbyterian, or Methodist, tried to convert as many as they could through kindness. The Catholics, in their superior faith, were not in any hurry to convert anybody. Yet decades later they would bring in and shelter thousands of illegal aliens in sanctuary cities, breaking immigration laws in order to shore up their flock.

But that was forty years ago. The legal immigrants from the turn of the century on to the eighties escaped religious oppression, dictatorships, communism, incarceration for political views, and many other reasons. They welcomed the opportunity to find happiness and success in the new world if they worked hard.

The immigrants of today, most of whom are illegal because the legal ones are still waiting in line for the dispensation of their applications, come for the generous welfare, to install the religious theocracy they brought with them, and to overturn the west into the hellhole they’ve escaped.

Life and relative freedom were good for many years but then America started to change. More and more foreigners who did not wish to assimilate flooded small towns and demanded fundamental changes in the fabric of society in order to accommodate their needs and entitlements. People like me who assimilated and were contributing to American society became the exception.

Cities became places of violent gangs and bums, cosmopolitan places without identity; customs and traditions were lost year by year; the city hall, the mayor, and the board of supervisors forced the locals to change to globalism, to adapt to U.N. demands, and to raise their children to be good global citizens without recollection of history, official language, and national boundaries.

Schools started teaching our children that it was shameful to be American; America was “evil” because it oppressed. I always looked around trying to find these fictitious “oppressed” and saw happy and prosperous people going about their daily lives. They had jobs, cars, homes, air conditioning, heating, best medical care in the world, great hospitals, well-qualified doctors, good roads, food, vacations, and other amenities that made life the best in the world.

Lobbyists and politicians started passing laws that fattened their pockets, their influence, their re-election campaign coffers, and dumbed down the education of our children; life-long Democrat representatives destroyed the lives and any possible future success in the areas they lorded over for decades; deviants with powerful lobby forced a weakening change in our society and in our military.

Daddy government welfare destroyed the family unit; Roe v. Wade legalized the murder of unborn children; fascistic feminism forced vile behavior on society; people crossed themselves helplessly and prayed that God would right the wrongs that kept piling up. The drug culture took over the minds of our young and the crack babies became of age, angry and violent characters with no moral compass.

Then politicians flooded the world with the flotsam and jetsam of the third world in a sick social engineering plan of forced international migration aimed at destroying sovereignty and installing elitist global governance.

Hollywood and their fellow travelers told us how bigoted, racist, and homophobic we are while they hid behind tall fences and locked palatial gates. They told us that we had to commute in tin cans, bike, or walk, while they jet-setted around the world in their private yachts, airplanes, and drove the most expensive cars money could buy. They told us that the fake global warming they invented and pushed with a rabid vengeance was going to destroy the planet unless we repented our capitalist life-style and adopted primitive living conditions.

Our children were indoctrinated daily by communist teachers to be ashamed of their country, their national anthem, their history, their traditions; we were the oppressors, there was nothing to be proud of, “the virtue of the oppressed” was a quality that had to be admired, primitive cultures chopping hands and heads were noble while our own culture was decadent and rotten.

More and more liberal constructs such as “micro-aggression,” “white privilege,” and “implicit racism” were invented to diminish the worth of the very successful and tolerant middle-class.

Then the flood gates of Islam opened and Europe will never be the same. Now it is America’s turn to become the world Caliphate they seek. The very politicians we trusted with our governance have become the oppressors of our freedoms by enabling the invaders to use our tolerance in the takeover process of our western civilization which is falling apart without so much as a whimper.

People live in fear of jihadis but bend over backwards to accommodate them in a western country and culture where they do not belong and do not wish to assimilate into. Citizens around the world are told that they must live in fear of violence, rape, and death and get used to the new frightening norm lest they be labeled racist, xenophobe, or bigot.

People cannot honor their history and traditions because they might offend someone else who invaded our country and now demand that we change to make room for their barbaric traditions.

Liberals made sure Thanksgiving and Christmas have become just opportunities to shop for things nobody really needs; crosses and other symbols of our Christianity are removed from any land or town. Graves are defaced or torn, crosses broken, and monuments witnessing our history are removed as racist and offensive to black people. The Taliban could not have done a better job of censoring our own history they did not like.

Young women demand birth control and the irrational “choice” to kill their babies up until the moment of live birth but go into a screaming rage when someone cuts down a tree or goes fishing. Animals have rights and, to protect them, we must eat dirt and grass. They push strollers with dogs and cats while billions in the third world reproduce like rabbits and wait to be fed by the producers who wisely and perhaps unwisely limit the number of children they bring into this world.

Feminism destroyed the relationship between men and women and the media and academia have created effeminate men who are afraid of their shadows and scream like banshees looking for a safe space on campus when reality, carrying no participation trophies, hits them in the face.

We had two television channels under communism and both ran the dear leader speeches all the time with the occasional movie, cartoon, or a decadent Texan soap opera. Communist screeners allowed the series Dallas to be viewed in hopes of showing the proletariat, starved for food and basics, how decadent capitalism was. Instead, people loved the life style and wished they had a scintilla of it in their lives or at least the opportunity to dream and try.

We have here in the U.S. hundreds of TV channels that are mostly laden with smut and Hollywood degenerates. The MSM broadcasts nothing but fake news and disinformation; they have outdone even the Soviet dezinformatsiya. It is a sad day when RT (Russia Today) actually broadcasts more informative programs and truthful news than all of the alphabet soup cable news in the U.S.

God is under attack daily and the souls of the global citizens are empty of devotion. Bodies are well-fed and exercised, food is abundant because it comes from the grocery stores liberals think, gyms are everywhere, but the collective soul is empty, evil, and corrupted by the societal debauchery and moral decay. The family, mother and father, are no longer there to teach their progeny the virtues of faith, salvation, honor, and the urgent need for a moral compass.

Forty years from now, there will be no witnesses left to real history, books will be a strange concept, and the world will be ruled by invisible nanoparticles, robotic technology, and glowing blue screens. This virtual world is fast replacing reality for the new generation of global citizen drones. Like Aldous Huxley said, “It’s a brave new world.”


Monday, July 17, 2017

Kitty Litter Trivia

A little trivia about kitty litter:

18-year old Bogart
In 1954 Edward Lowe from Cassopolis, Michigan, started selling his Kitty Litter clay pellets invention to grocery stores around the country. It was an instant success. Until then cats were doing their business in smelly sand boxes.

Lowe tried to sell his clay pellets to chicken farmers who used hay to line the chicken cages but he failed because clay pellets were much more expensive than hay.

One day his neighbor ran out of sand for her outdoor cat sand box and asked for some sand. Ed gave her a bag of his clay pellets instead.

His product, kitty litter, became an over 100 million dollar company and cats were invited in and became the number one indoor pet, outpacing dogs.
Thanks to Lowe's invention, I can keep my beloved pet, Bogart, indoors.

Scott Brothers of Massachusetts

We don't think about it but we should be grateful everyday to the Scott Brothers of Watertown, Massachusetts, who invented the toilet paper in the 19th century!

Since people were embarrassed to buy it, the Scott Brothers thought they had a dud invention on their hands until they had the brilliant idea to give it freely to hotels. Hotels agreed because they were fed up with their small pipes being clogged all the time. Until then, people used corn husks and newspapers which clogged the small sewer pipes. Customers loved the toilet paper for that very reason too and began buying it. And the rest is history.
A more modern outhouse in Romania
Photo: Ziarul Prejmereanul
In Romania's outhouses, we used corn husks and communist party propaganda newspapers because we did not have Sears and Roebucks catalogs or any catalogs for that matter. Once in a while a German tourist would leave behind one of their catalogs and we enjoyed looking at the abundance of everything we did not have, so we never used those for toilet paper. We especially enjoyed wiping with pages which had the dictator Ceausescu's face on them.

Communist Romania toilet paper I brought back from my 1985 visit
Later on, when toilet paper was finally made, it was coarse light brown paper with wood chips still embedded in the paper, or, if white, it had faintly visible words on it from the books which were recycled into toilet paper, including American Bibles donated during disaster reliefs. I still have a strip of more modern pink toilet paper, less coarse but wood chips are still visible in the paper. This strip dates from four years ago. Progress after communism is very slow.

Julia McWilliams and the Shark Chaser
Julia McWilliams chopped shark meat, let it rot, then squeezed the blood out to mix it with chemicals in order to make shark repellant for sailors who often had to abandon ship after being torpedoed by U-boats during WWII. Many who survived a torpedo blast to their ship were eaten by sharks.

The U.S. Navy commissioned Julia to develop a shark repellant that mimicked the smell of rotten shark flesh, the only thing that chased sharks away.

She developed a slowly melting wax bar infused with the smell of rotting shark flesh.

Named the "shark chaser," the bar became part of every sailor's life preserver, adding a layer of safety and the possibility of survival from shark attacks if they wound up in the open ocean.

The repellant was tested in open waters baited with chum. When the sharks appeared, the repellant chased them away for a long time. As the bar melted, it formed a circle of protection around each sailor.

In 1946, Julia McWilliams, a member of the OSS, was assigned in Paris where she met P. Child whom she married and became Julia Child.

Putting her repellant-making talents to new endeavors, she attended Le Cordon Blu cooking school in Paris and became the most admired household name in the fine art of French cooking. Her famous kitchen can be seen at the Smithsonian.

Julia Child's famous kitchen at the Smithsonian
Photo: Matthew Bisanz
The Navy stopped making the "shark chaser" in 1973.

Dick Willimas, the RMS Titanic Survivor

Dick Williams
Photo: Wikipedia
RMS Titanic sailed on her fateful voyage on April 10 from the port of Southampton. On April 14 at 11:40 p.m. the Titanic hit an iceberg and began to sink.

One of the passengers, a young tennis player named Dick Williams, put on a life jacket and, before he jumped into the frigid Atlantic, he helped fill a boat with passengers. Grateful, they pulled him into the boat to safety but, as it was overloaded, it took in water and, an already shivering Williams, had to sit in ankle-deep cold water until 4 a.m. when they were rescued by the Carpathia.
The doctors told him that he had such terrible frost bite that they would have to amputate his legs in order to save his life from gangrene that was sure to set in.

Dick refused and began to pace the boat with bandaged feet every two hours in a valiant effort to restore circulation to his badly frostbitten legs.

To the doctors' surprise, after two days of his grueling self-prescribed walk every two hours, Williams' legs began to improve, he started feeling them again, and circulation was restored, thus savings his life and his legs.
Once on shore, after a rigorous training program, three months later, Williams won the mixed doubles title at the U.S. National Championship.

His career included winning Wimbledon, Olympic gold medal, and being inducted into the Hall of Fame.


Rebecca, the Presidential Raccoon

On Thanksgiving 1926, President Coolidge and his wife received a most unusual gift from a lady in Mississippi.

Thinking that it was a turkey for dinner, the First Lady opened the crate and found a beautiful raccoon; such animals were viewed as a southern delicacy at the time. Attached to the crate was a recipe for smoked raccoon with sweet potatoes.

The quandary was, the first couple wanted to be seen in public appreciating the gift, but did not want to eat the raccoon they fell in love with.
The day after Thanksgiving, President Coolidge spoke about the unusual gift which they could not eat because they found her to be quite charming, and asked the public to help him name her because he and the First Lady wanted to keep her as a pet and add her to the bulging menagerie of dogs, cats, and canaries.

Once named, President Coolidge made a point to stroll Rebecca, the raccoon, on a leash, for a few minutes every afternoon across the White House lawn.
Rebecca was, hands down, the most unusual pet ever at the White House.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Christian Chaldeans in Iraq Must Be Saved

As western civilization is on a quest of self-destruction, tripping over itself to move and distribute around the world millions of mostly military-age Muslim men categorized as “Syrian refugees” by the International Office of Migration, even though many are not from Syria, an underfunded organization,, is trying to save what is left of the Christians residing in the Middle East, particularly in Iraq.

These Muslim men seeking economic welfare and wealth redistribution have created havoc in Europe, rapes and crimes incomprehensible to the civilized world, and the elites who brought them in have turned a blind eye and deaf ears to the cries of their citizens who understood that these religionists of peace are never going to assimilate into our western culture, accept it, or even co-exist with Christians, they want Sharia Law and a world Caliphate.

Ezra Levant, in his crowdfunding letter, reminded us that “during the Holocaust, many righteous gentiles helped save Jews from genocide. As a Jew, I feel a special responsibility to do my part, now that Christians in the Middle East are facing their own genocide.”

Why would Christians not help their own Christian brethren in the Middle East? Why are westerners helping Muslims? Nobody is committing genocide against Muslims. Yet there are ancient Christians called Chaldeans in northern Iraq who are being systematically murdered for their faith.  

Chaldeans still pray in Aramaic, the language of Jesus. As Levant described, “They’ve fled Muslim terrorists who kill Christian men and rape Christian women and girls as young as nine years old.”

To the question, why are these Christians not going to refugee camps, the answer is simple – those camps are dominated by Muslim radicals.

Ezra Levant continued, “Even in refugee camps, the Muslims attack the Christians. So the most vulnerable people never get help. And it’s why Syrian refugees to the west are overwhelmingly Muslim – they’re being chosen from these Muslim camps.”

Faith Goldy and a team of videographers are going to tell the story of the “deliberate ethnic cleansing of the oldest Christian community in the world, in the Biblical land of Nineveh.” Levant hopes that perhaps this documentary will bring awareness and alarm the rest of the civilized world.

The group will take with them enough food for 750 families – bottles of cooking oil, canned tomatoes, bags of sugar, and tea. “Staples like that will help a family for weeks, maybe a month,” said Levant.

The humanitarian mission hopes to raise $10,000, a modest sum by any measure. It looks like a drop in the bucket considering that the United Nations is spending one million dollars every two hours on Muslim refugees from the area and they are not threatened by annihilation.

Levant believes that “the Muslim refugees are well taken care of – by the U.N., by Angela Merkel, by Justin Trudeau, by the media,” but nobody takes care of the forgotten Chaldean Christians. The crowdfunded donations will be used for humanitarian relief in northern Iraq and for Chaldeans fleeing from the genocidal religionists of peace.


Sunday, July 9, 2017

"White Privilege" is a Myth

West Indian Creole woman with
her servant c. 1780
Photo: Wikipedia
I was pondering the other day, how I came to be the lottery winner of “white privilege.” God made me in the image of a good Christian, compassionate and loving to my fellow human beings, and gave me certain tools for success that he gave everybody else, regardless of skin color.

I felt privileged that my parents worked hard and put a roof over our heads and food on the table. It was not the best in the world, but we survived. Nobody gave us welfare and, had we demanded something we did not earn and were not entitled to, we would have been told swiftly, “no work, no food.”

“White privilege” is a spurious construct invented by progressive academics who love to divide and categorize people into groups just so they can keep animosity and hatred between them in order to better control them.  

My parents always told me that, if I applied myself and worked very hard, I would be successful. Nobody made promises to me that life would be easy and success will just fall in my lap just because I was classified as “white” by university scholars and government bureaucrats.

The Constitution does not mention free college tuition, free health care, and other entitlements that Democrats classify as rights. I have the right to exist and the opportunity to pursue my happiness, health, and education, and nobody owes me anything based on my skin color.

If I work, I have money to eat, a roof over my head, I may have a car, and other amenities that can be bought, if I can afford them. If I want luxuries, I must work extra, get a better job, or forget about it. Happiness and satisfaction do not come from buying material things.

Now angry and violent lefties are trying to diminish my hard work by telling me that I did not “build” that, it was given to me because I have the esoteric construct called “white privilege.” As double talkers, progressives are really good at inventing euphemisms. If there is such a thing as “white privilege,” why isn’t there a “black privilege?” What about “Hispanic privilege,” “Native American privilege,” “Asian privilege?”

What exactly is “white privilege?” According to a website, “white privilege” is a “set of advantages and/or immunities that white people benefit from on a daily basis beyond those common to all others. White privilege can exist without white people’s conscious knowledge of its presence and it helps to maintain the racial hierarchy in this country.” By this definition, “white privilege” does not exist in other countries where white people live. Apparently we have “white privilege” as a “direct result of the disadvantages of other people.” According to this half-baked theory, even white people who are not overtly racist benefit from “white supremacy.” So “white privilege” is equal with “white supremacy?”

Students cite the fact that “white privilege is not having to worry about being followed in a department store while shopping.” Perhaps if you shopped rather than shop-lifted, you would not be followed.

Violent and angry mobs riot, burn, rob people on trains, and hit people of a different skin color over the head in a sick “knockout game.” It is sheer hatred generated by their lack of a moral compass and success, taking their anger on innocents. Riots are a convenient excuse to loot stores in their own neighborhoods.

At the lowest point in our lives, white friends and I never looted or robbed stores under the pretense of “social justice.” We did not demand other people’s money, free college tuition, free health care, and other government forms of welfare. We took a second job, worked every day and part of the night because we had pride and honor, not bogus “white privilege.” I worked for minimum wage even though I had a college degree, cheap labor was not beneath me.

“White privilege” is “about thinking that your clothes, manner of speech, and behavior in general, are racially neutral, when in fact, they are white.” Behaving like a civilized person, speaking proper English, and behaving like a human instead of a savage street thug is not “white privilege,” it is proper breeding and having a mom at home in the first six years of your life, teaching you how to behave.

Black students bullying other black kids because they make good grades is wrong. They are not “acting white,” they are concerned for their future and have a plan for success. Wearing pants down your bottoms like jail inmates do is not proper dressing. Nobody wants to see your underwear in public. Using incomprehensible ghetto jargon is not a formula for success either. Communication in a common language that everyone understands is important.

“White privilege exists on an individual, cultural, and institutional level.” I cannot remember how many times I lost jobs to lesser qualified and lesser educated black applicants who were hired because of affirmative action quotas. How many better prepared Caucasian students could not attend a university of their choice because there are quotas set up for black people, Hispanic people, and people born in a “poor” state?

One Seattle liberal writer wrote in 2015 why “white privilege” exists.

1.     “I Have the Privilege of (Generally) Having a Positive Relationship with the Police”

Could that be because you were taught to respect authority, especially the police, and how to behave in a polite manner outside of home? Yes, you have the privilege to behave in an orderly and respectful manner when questioned by police. How you choose to behave dictates the outcome of any encounter with the police or any other people for that matter, regardless of your race. If you are violent, recalcitrant, and armed, you will be treated with blunt force.

2.     “I Have the Privilege of Being Favored by School Authorities”

School authorities treat everyone by the same set of rules; if you choose not to follow those rule and become violent, then the treatment of you will escalate to another level; violent students at home or in the streets are violent and recalcitrant in school as well, defiant of authority, and must be treated accordingly. Schools hire security to help school personnel deal with such offenders.

3.     ”I Have the Privilege of Learning about My Race in School”

Ethnic studies are on the rise at all colleges and universities even though they do not assure a student employment upon graduation. Nobody is stopping you from learning about your specific ethnic group or race’s history and culture.

The problem for liberals is, most of the contributions to science and mathematics, even literature, have been made by the much reviled “evil white men.” That is a fact. There are some contributions made by other races but, generally, modern technology and science discoveries were made by white men.

Students are forced to learn about the Five Pillars of Islam, in an effort to convert as many students as possible to that faith. Whatever happened to the atheists suing over “separation of church and state?” Does it only apply to Christianity, not to Islam?

There is black history month; since the U.S. black population is about 12 percent, then, to be mathematically accurate, there should be about a month and a half of learning nothing else but about black history and the contributions made by black people to civilization.

4.     “I Have the Privilege of Attending Segregated Schools of Affluence”

Many white people do not have the privilege of attending the schools of their choice for many reasons – they cannot afford the expensive tuition, perhaps their grades are not good enough, or reside in areas that do not fall under that school’s jurisdiction. On the contrary, most “schools of influence” are segregated based on wealth and income and not race. Obama’s children attended a “school of influence” in D.C. even though they self-identify as black. If there is segregation, it is based on income, not skin color.

5.     I Have the Privilege of Finding Children’s Books that Overwhelmingly Represent My Race”

Most publishers are liberal and tend to accept for publication books that represent their progressive stance. Books are written generally in a number representative of the black population in the U.S. You cannot possibly force white authors to write about something they are not familiar with since they did not grow up or experience the black culture.

6.     “I Have the Privilege of Soaking in Media Blatantly Biased Toward My Race”

It is hard to even dignify such a statement particularly today when the MSM has become the laughingstock of fake news, defending manufactured news which are heavily biased towards the Democrat Party platform, a platform that has failed black people for decades, keeping them suppressed and poor (see Detroit). Yet these people of color keep electing their corrupt Democrat Party representatives and senators to power. I don’t know many white people who take the MSM media seriously because of their “social justice” and “collectivism” ideology, both communist inventions which some of us have been victims of for decades.

If you are a criminal, the media reportage will generally cover up the criminal’s race or ethnicity, unless he/she is white.

7.     “I Have the Privilege of Escaping Violent Stereotypes Associated with My Race”

The writer makes the bogus statement that “White supremacists (who tend to be White) have perpetuated more terrorism in the United States than any foreign threat.” I suppose 9/11 and the jihadi movement never happened.

8.     “I Have the Privilege of Playing the Colorblind Card, Wiping the Slate Clean of Centuries of Racism”

He makes a good point that “race is a social construction based on physical differences.” However, he blames white people for using the invention of race. I have not met a black student yet who has not shamelessly benefited from his/her race when competing for scholarships, grants, college admission, jobs, adjustment to their entrance ACT or SAT scores, and other benefits not available to white students.

The concept of “colorblindness” is not good enough for this writer, we have to atone for our “implicit biases,” another bogus euphemism, claiming that we associate lighter skin to intelligence, that we give black children less medication for severe pain, and that we “prefer white-sounding names when it comes to school discipline, job applications, and government inquiries,” a ridiculous assertion, which is not true; and it is against the law to discriminate in such a way.

Many of us get our “white privilege” by going to work every day, sometimes to very unpleasant jobs and when sick because we cannot afford to miss the paycheck.  Others get “white privilege” by working long hours on a project, by studying hard on a test instead of partying with the boys, and because we take the hard road of personal responsibility without crying discrimination and racism. When we were told no, we never gave up and tried harder.

Because we have this imaginary “white privilege,” race baiters and their fellow travelers want reparations for slavery which, in some progressive opinions, had an important role in giving us today’s imaginary “white privilege.”

Slavery, gone but not forgotten, has been a justified stigma in the history of our country. Progressives are demanding financial reparations for slavery which is objected to by Americans whose ancestors were never involved in or benefitted from the slave trade. Progressive advocates fail to mention that there were also white slaves who built this country, they were indentured to industrial projects and railroads.

The Atlantic slave trade took place from the 15th through the 19th centuries with slaves from central and western parts of Africa who had been sold by other West Africans to Western European slave traders.

The Portuguese brought in 1526 the first transatlantic slaves from Africa to the Americas. They were sold to work in coffee, tobacco, cocoa, sugar, and cotton plantation, silver mines, rice fields, construction industry, logging timber for ships, skilled labor, and as domestic servants.

The British, the French, the Spanish, and the Dutch Empires followed the Portuguese’s example and shipped slaves in cargo ships to the New World and to the Caribbean area where slaves made goods to be sold in  Europe. More than 12 million slaves were bought and sold; a substantial number died during the grueling passage at sea.

By the 17th century slavery became a caste in which children born to slave mothers were slaves themselves and thus property.  At the beginning of the 19th century, governments moved to ban the trade but smuggling still occurred. In the 21st century, some governments issued official apologies.

According to historians, slavery was practiced for centuries in parts of Africa, Europe, Asia, and the Americas, long before the Atlantic slave trade. African states exported slaves to other African countries. The African slave trade was a source of slaves to Europeans and many Muslim countries. From the 9th to the 19th centuries, slave trades from across the Sahara, through the Red Sea, from the Indian Ocean benefitted Muslim countries.

The volume in the Atlantic slave trade was larger than the African slave trade. The victims of the Atlantic slave trade came primarily from several areas: Senegal and Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Ivory Coast, Togo, Benin, Nigeria, Cameroon, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Republic of Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo, Angola, Mozambique, and Madagascar.

Slavery is wrong no matter who practiced it, how, for what reason, and during what time. But to create racial strife in 2017 by claiming a bogus “white privilege” in the United States, one of the most tolerant nations on the planet, is wrong and divisive, particularly in an environment that progressives have termed themselves as “colorblind.”

We have many black people in positions of power in the United States, in business, education, in Hollywood, in sports; the federal government is dominated by black employees, and we’ve already elected the first black president who is now very busy overseas, bashing America and the current president.