Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Rosa Lee Ingram (1938-2009)

Ironic is that today marks my 700th post, however I am not writing about what I may have wanted to. In 2008 I lost my Granny Hazel, the woman that taught me that with the use of kindness and a smile, you could chop a person up like Hannibal Lecter. This year, a few days before my Granny Virgie’s Birthday, I lost her; the woman who gave me the backbone to know and not think I was great and should only lead as opposed to follow or be successful. This Morning, at 243 am central time, I lost my aunt Rosa Lee, my granny Virgie eldest daughter and my mom’s big sister, less than a month after my granny’s death; she taught me how to read and the value thereof.

My Granny Virgie the week before thanksgiving and now my aunt Rosa, basically a week before Christmas. Now my mother has on sister left. She lost her brother, my uncle who was the baby in 2004. I remember that day for I found him in his bed. Which means out side of the last two in our family matriarch, I am the eldest man remaining with four other in my generation remaining, with two of us, my cousin and myself having two kids each.

The last time I saw my Aunt it was during my Granny’s funeral in Memphis, I drove her in her Cadillac to the service. She was in good spirits seeing that she had lived with my Granny all of her life and that her sisters including mom had been taking care of her. It was if a burden had been lift to live her life again. I just didn’t know it would be the last time I saw her. She was the first to go to college in my family – Rust in Mississippi where she studied education and became a teacher with a focus on reading education. She was so dedicated that in Memphis, in the late 50’s, she was arrested for using a library that was meant for whites only. In fact I remember seeing that picture of her and her friends from the newspaper in several history books.

My Granny was married when she was 16 and had my Aunt Rosa when she was 17. She was married to my grandfather until the day he died. She used to tell me that they married for peanut butter - meaning that they would be together even if they had to eat just peanut butter. Which is one reason I may not have a wife as of yet because of the standard she imprinted in my mind at a young age. I think that is why she and aunt Rosa Lee were so close, being only 17 years apart, they were more like sisters.

Although she was 71, I never looked at her as being old. But guess she was, I used to hate being a little kid having to go with her to Helen of Memphis where my family bought all of their fur coats or to Nelson Endicott – our family jeweler. I would only remember being the only boy and us the only blacks in those places at that time. When my mother called me this morning I knew she was gone and could not sleep the entire night before her call after she told me the Doctor’s said she had fluid on the lungs and my mom said she had stopped eating. I was supposed to call her that night; my mom felt like my Granny, she would start to eat again if I asked her to do so. I did not make the call and did not get the chance to hear her voice again. Now the Klan is down to eleven in the bloodline.

I just want to tell my aunt, who corrected my speech each time I mad a mistake that love her and want to remind folks of what is really important and that is the love that is evinced between the families. No bond is greater and no gift is equal to that of giving someone special a piece of your heart. I am hurting but I am still blessed for having the family unit that have. I have learned that love is unconditional through them and gifts of such are forever. For they love me and love all that I love. I will take that to my grave because no one can love your for real, if they do not love the things you love and for me that is one thing – my family.

Monday, December 07, 2009

i aint mad - maybe i should b a whitehouse servant

$172,2000 – Sher, Susan (CHIEF OF STAFF)

$140,000 – Frye, Jocelyn C. (DEPUTY ASSISTANT TO THE PRESIDENT AND DIRECTOR OF POLICY AND PROJECTS FOR THE FIRST LADY)

$113,000 – Rogers, Desiree G. (SPECIAL ASSISTANT TO THE PRESIDENT AND WHITE HOUSE SOCIAL SECRETARY)

$102,000 – Johnston, Camille Y. (SPECIAL ASSISTANT TO THE PRESIDENT AND DIRECTOR OF COMMUNICATIONS FOR THE FIRST LADY)

Winter, Melissa E. (SPECIAL ASSISTANT TO THE PRESIDENT AND DEPUTY CHIEF OF STAFF TO THE FIRST LADY)

$90,000 – Medina, David S. (DEPUTY CHIEF OF STAFF TO THE FIRST LADY)

$84,000 – Lelyveld, Catherine M. (DIRECTOR AND PRESS SECRETARY TO THE FIRST LADY)

$75,000 – Starkey, Frances M. (DIRECTOR OF SCHEDULING AND ADVANCE FOR THE FIRST LADY)

$70,000 – Sanders, Trooper (DEPUTY DIRECTOR OF POLICY AND PROJECTS FOR THE FIRST LADY)

$65,000 – Burnough, Erinn J. (DEPUTY DIRECTOR AND DEPUTY SOCIAL SECRETARY)

Reinstein, Joseph B. (DEPUTY DIRECTOR AND DEPUTY SOCIAL SECRETARY)

$62,000 – Goodman, Jennifer R. (DEPUTY DIRECTOR OF SCHEDULING AND EVENTS COORDINATOR FOR THE FIRST LADY)

$60,000 – Fitts, Alan O. (DEPUTY DIRECTOR OF ADVANCE AND TRIP DIRECTOR FOR THE FIRST LADY)

Lewis, Dana M. (SPECIAL ASSISTANT AND PERSONAL AIDE TO THE FIRST LADY)

$52,500 – Mustaphi, Semonti M. (ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR AND DEPUTY PRESS SECRETARY TO THE FIRST LADY)

$50,000 – Jarvis, Kristen E. (SPECIAL ASSISTANT FOR SCHEDULING AND TRAVELING AIDE TO THE FIRST LADY)

$45,000 – Lechtenberg, Tyler A. (ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR OF CORRESPONDENCE FOR THE FIRST LADY)

Tubman, Samantha (DEPUTY ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR,SOCIAL OFFICE)

$40,000 – Boswell, Joseph J. (EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT TO THE CHIEF OF STAFF TO THE FIRST LADY)

$36,000 – Armbruster, Sally M. (STAFF ASSISTANT TO THE SOCIAL SECRETARY)
Bookey, Natalie (STAFF ASSISTANT)

Jackson, Deilia A. (DEPUTY ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR OF CORRESPONDENCE FOR THE FIRST LADY)

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

the pre-fuctuial agreement

In this age of harlots, infidelity, groupies and celebrity fascination, I have come to the conclusion that the legal world has not kept up. In particular when it comes to voice mail transactions, text messages and tweets between both parties’s. So here today I propose the establishment of a new legal document call the pre- fuckuial agreement.

The way I see it, if a man has any status in the form of wealth or fame, he will need to protect himself legally from the money hungry groupies that tend to amass like pigeons on a wire (did I say pigeons?). We have legal trust and wills and in the case of prior to marriage pre-nuptial agreements, but what is there for us who just want to bone and dis-own? We have nothing.

For us, I mean, many of us like to slang penis on a regular, but what grounds do we have availed to us if we one day, find ourselves in the same light as Tiger Woods. Now true he is married and it is foul to creep when one is under the union of holy matrimony. Likewise it is foul for a woman to have sex with a married man, but that is beside the point. For us regular men need to know that the wrath of a woman, when in pursuit of a free meal ticket is ravenous. So I have decided to have my lawyer work on a new legal tool call the pre-fuckuial agreement. It will be signed prior to sex and extends to the woman the premise that if she agrees to sex, she cannot keep the sperm filled condom or take it out of the garbage upon completion of sex, as well as obviates her rights to share or publicize any text messages, emails, voice mails or any other cyber communication to any third party,

Yes this should help out greatly. So before you pick up some skank, trick or woman in a club, Kroger or on Face book and desire to take her in your bed – have your pre-fuctuial agreement in hand and don’t leave home without it.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

459 years later

I write this with a heavy heart and before I leave for Memphis to bury my last grandmother. Martin Luther King Jr. once said “how soon ‘not now’ becomes never.” If anytime these words ring truer today than in times past. It has been 459 years since the first inhabitants of Africa were brought to these shores and just 41 years ago the descendents of these individuals were granted the right to vote.

In this age of swag and want to be goons, gangsters and thugs and women who admire supper head, something has gone amiss. Albeit not a sooth sayer as written in Oedipus Rex, I do know that as a whole we are oblivious to most if not all that is around us with the exception of what is going on with Chris Brown and Rhiana or the latest video labeled number one on 106 and Park. You ask someone what they think of the economic recovery act and they will say they dont know, or haven't read it as if we expect others to do for us, what we should do for ourselves. Even worse when confronted of such, we get offended, get defensive and feel degraded by what I write, type or say.

The truth of the matter is that we degrade ourselves when we do not objectively attempt accept or acknowledge our intellectual prowess is different, ill-informed and unequipped to solve or deal with the problems our community faces. We even feel better by making excuses. Because for a lot of us, if the shoe fits, do not want to wear or accept it without being distorted by any process of defensiveness. We know little of history let alone the world around us. I made a statement as such on twitter and was told that I was degrading black people. The truth is that i did not feel degraded and I am black. I can query about floating interest rates and get no response, but ask about Drake's latest song then everyone chimes in.

Now I aint searching or seeking glory I learned that such was Napoleon’s dénouement. Nor do I write this to make friends but rather to try and take care of mines. But to speak of such makes some folks mad and sensitive like Ralph Tresvant. We should in my mind be able to accept the truth no matter how painful, for until we do we will continue to enslave ourselves while at the same time complain yet feel no need to work for what we desire. Our folks did not fight slavery, Jim Crow, and segregation for us to just do nothing except watch TV, listen to music and think we free.

This is real and strange, especially in a time in which we have seen history made with the election of our 44th president. Yet many of us do not have a clue and don’t tend to nourish ourselves mentally and intellectually. Instead we attend to the mundane – celebrity and materialism. The real materialism in the world is family and what we can do with out minds, but we continue to lag behind in this understanding and focus on shopping malls and what is feed to us on television. Yep, it has been 459 years since we were brought here in the form of slaves, now we remain slaves, seem to be negro comfortable and even worse – enslave our selves through our apathy.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Virgie Ingram (1921 - 2009)

My granny died yesterday morning.That is her in front of my shop in the wheel chair with my mother and daughter. We represent 4 generations. I wrote this for here when i went to see her a few months ago. I miss here, but will remember all the things she told me. These are a few:

1] "excuses, boy dont make no excuses, ifs ands pots and pans the whole world would be a kitchen".....................granny

2]
"i will try is the same as saying i will fail"............. granny

3] "dont do things trying the be famous or successful, just strive to be great and kind"....granny

4] "if you wanna hide something from a nigga put it in a book, read all and every thing, they could be talking about me and you wouldnt know if u dont read everything".............granny

5] "if u a ditch digger be the best ditch digger 'cause they will always call torrance to dig that ditch"...granny

I miss my granny, especially her laugh - love always - Pumpkin

Thursday, November 19, 2009

this aint Zimbabwe

Ok, you know me, its all about the economy folk. I have been looking over the back of Geithner and Obama, at least as much as I can suppurate from their statements and documented economic proposals. My problem remains the same – it cannot work with increasing unemployment, inflation, believing that some corporations are too big to fail and more importantly, having no policy designed to stabilize and or empower the US dollar.

The future I see is one of massive government-debt defaults and increased poverty. Yep, poverty. Especially since the debt we have amassed as a nation will eventually be passed on to the US Treasury, Federal Reserve Bank and us regular folk. You can call me crazy if you like but logic and reason remains. Firstly, 1% of Americans own more than 90% of the nation’s wealth, not to mention our debt over the past two years has moved from 11 trillion dollars to almost 25 trillion dollars.

This years annual report on hunger released by the United States Department of Agriculture reported 49.1 million Americans in 17 million households lacked dependable access to food in 2008. This is close to 17 percent of the US population. This tells me more people are below the official poverty level – maybe about 80 million folk. This is not impractical an estimate since the US Census Bureau announced last September that real median household income in the United States fell about 4 percent between 2007 and 2008 alone.

True, I am not an economist but I am no idiot either. The declining state of the US economy is regressing as so at the pace of an avalanche. I suggest we start to watch oil and commodity prices as the real indicator of what is anticipated for the future. I mean you think we don’t have jobs now, there will be less and less if inflation continues to rise, which means prices will increase and folk will be spending less. I hope the President is on to of this, I mean I know he was just in China meeting with our debtors to ensure them that they can keep lending us money. Don’t know if he discussed the dollar for at this rate it will be virtual worthless. This means inflation will only continue as indicated by the recent consumer price index. This suggest to me that if we keep adding to the debt, folk may loose faith in the markets and stop investing all together making this current recession palpable in comparison what may follow. Maybe we need to consider ending floating exchange rates in this country. It is worth a try because in simple terms, money is only worth what folks are willing to exchange for it. This aint Zimbabwe but we may be soon.

Friday, November 06, 2009

madness, madness, war

Coming home to a place you know well and trying to reintegrate after being deployed abroad cannot be comprehended by the average citizen, as well many civilian politicians, community leaders and even some top military brass. This is because we as a nation are insensitivity to others and do not understand what it means to go off and fight for ones life in a brazen and foreign land. Thus it doesn’t surprise me that a person, regardless of any social marker, can flip like a light switch and kill folk in their immediate environment.

For years we have been aware of cases of men and women returning from Iraq and Afghanistan and committing violent criminal acts. Just last month a 21-year old Indiana man killed himself in a movie theater after watching Zombieland. Then there was the case of William Grant Johnson who killed a physician in New York and shot several others before he was captured. And there was Michael James in Hawaii who murdered his wife and son and also killed himself. Then there is Jacob Gregory Swanson of California who killed his girlfriend and committed suicide afterwards. The list goes on and on: William Howell, a Colorado-based Army Special Forces soldier who shot himself in the head in his front yard in March; the attempted murder-suicide at Fort Lewis this summer, and the Iraq war vet who killed himself and wife in Washington state less than a month ago.

This is not just consistent for our recent wars but even wars of past Last month in the UK and American Vietnam veteran killed his boss and tried to kill three others in a “Reservoir Dogs style attack”. We have known for years that domestic violence has been on the rise for war veterans as well as the extent to which PTSD has been occurring as well however, what do we do nothing, and act like nothing is going on or worse as if it is not a serious problem that needs to be addressed. All we do is turn our backs, watch football, and decide what clubs we going to go too while these folks come back here in states of anger and rage we will never comprehend.

Most of us know a war is going on but are with drawn and only show passion if any in the form of political discourse. The truth is that we are removed otherwise, far removed and live our lives the way we would if a war was going on or not. It is like the military is involved, engaged and fighting the war by themselves because the general public goes around as if we don’t care. We don’t even feel the impact of the war for the only ones that really do either are fighting it nor have family members fighting in it. And just imagine how that makes veterans returning home feel?

As a scientist, I know first hand that we aint doing our part. I mean there is no research available nor being conducted to discern the impact of multiple tours and their effect on behavior; or how many tours are too much before a person evinces serious problem behavioral outcomes; or how effective are the evaluation measures we use to suppurate data from veterans returning home; or how well (if at all) are the programs we use to re-integrate veterans are? Ask this as a scientist for I see the same thing in the field of my specialty which is working with infectious disease and mental health outcomes among correctional populations. The goals of my confederates and me are to re-integrate inmates successfully, reduce mental health and infectious disease outcomes as well as keep them from returning back to prison.


We have found that there are different approaches that work for different inmate/correctional populations and worse, there exist no standard protocols for program implementation for inmates and vary from state to state. We need to support research and encourage research for the purpose of dealing with the behavioral health outcomes of military populations. I say this as a scientist; for it seems we are doping nothing and worse do not know what is required or needed; what works and what doesn’t.

What ever the case we need some answers and some answers fast. These folks are used to solving problems by killing - killing is all they know. Otherwise it will only get worse and Major Malik Nadal Hasan, MD wont be the last. It all reminds me of “Five nights of bleeding” by Linton Kwesi Johnson- especially the lyrics there is “war amongs' the rebels, madness, madness, war,

Monday, November 02, 2009

Wall Street, DC

For the past coupla a few years I have been writing and thinking a lot about money and economics. Before then I used to always write about foreign policy, I don’t know why, for my professional expertise, or any of my Undergraduate, master of doctorate degrees are in the area of either foreign policy or economics. Moreover, nor am I a conspiracy theorist. I guess you can say I just like puzzles and problem solving and more importantly freely thinking for myself.

I have been consistent and even accurate in my analysis and evaluation with respect to the US government and the so-called representation of an economy it fosters. I have also been consistent in pointing out that there is no difference really between the political beasts we call Washington, DC and the financial varmints we label Wall Street. And for me there is no better example than the Crooks who operate at the top levels of Goldman Sachs. The way I have figured since the 1960, the folks who run and formulate Washington’s economic policy are the same folk who make fist full of loot for their own personal interest. Starting with the chief Thief in charge – Robert Rubin. Now Rubin was forced to resign from CitiGroup as its Chairman earlier this year for his messed performance. It was profitable for him seeing he left with more than 100 million in his pocket. However, he got his start with Goldman Sachs in the mid 1960s where he eventually became co-chairman in 1990. He was only around for a few years for afterwards he became Assistant to the President for economic policy and eventually US Treasury secretary in 1995.

Then there was Stephen Friedman who served as Chairman from 90 to 94 and as the director from 2005 to date. However in between he was the Chairman of the New York Federal Reserve from 2008-2009. Also there is Adam Storch (VP from 2004-2009 for GS) who now serves as the managing executive of the Security and exchange – as if we expect folks to police themselves. Henry Paulson was Chairman CEO of Goldman Sachs until he resigned to become US Treasury secretary in 2006 until 2009.

It also works the other way around. Michael Paese was deputy staff director on the House Financial services committee from 2007-2008 before becoming Director for Government Affairs for GS which he serves as today. Robert Zoellick was US trade representative from 2001-2005 as well as deputy secretary of state from 2005-06 before putting in work as a managing director at GS from 2006-2007.

This is just an example for I can say the same about Citigroup and others. In fact Geithner was VERY close to executives of Citigroup, ( Robert E. Rubin). Now all I am saying is that it is difficult for me to see how folks who created this problem while working both on Wall Street and In the Halls of Washington Politics can solve the problem. Moreover, I think it really show what the problem is. One of importance is revealed incessant incompetence. If most of us messed up dollars on our jobs at scales way less than what Rubin did at Citigroup – we would be fir4d and likely not be employed again. But not these folks. They are head of the game. And we Americans don’t get it, nor does Obama or any of them other politicians regardless of political affiliation. I don’t know about yawl, but I don’t trust nor love them Wall Street, DC hoes. I mean I do not see a difference between the two: Wall Street or DC, do or can you?

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

not post racial but rather neo-reconstructive

Now a while back I penned an essay called Negro comfortable up in here. The tractate expressed both my concerns and reservations of the various assumptions that folk, in particular African Americans, would develop as a function of having Barack Obama as the President of these United States of America. Prior to that I wrote two that expressed a comparative concern from the other extreme: From Tobe to Joe Six Pack and Red Rum. But outlined what the election of the first African American President would like yield in disposition for a large portion of WASPs.

I recant vividly the number of threats, even an anticipated terror plot being foiled by Secret Service and FBI with respect to a group in Kentucky. All the time as the home of dixicrats, the South rumbled about how his election would be a representation of socialism that would destroy America as it “used to be.” Now I took that for meaning several things which are not that important for they all focus on fear and privilege – even white privilege. Even on the top end, we have seen South Carolina Congressman Joe Wilson’s angry outburst, calling Obama a liar to his face (and a national audience). But what can one expect from a card carrying member of the Son’s of the Confederacy whose Confederate "Catechism” advocates:


"The preservation of liberty and freedom was the motivating factor in the South's decision to fight the Second American Revolution. The tenacity with which Confederate soldiers fought underscored their belief in the rights guaranteed by the Constitution. These attributes are the underpinning of our democratic society and represent the foundation on which this nation was built."


The current climate appears to be one on a continuum of two extremes. The first of which is one of elation, high expectations, balloon boys, Real House Wives of Atlanta and the BET hip hop awards. The next being one of White Student Unions forming at major Universities, Ministers praying for the death of Obama, Nazi symbols being cut on golf courses, a 400 percent increase of death threats to the president, and I will not mention some of the folks with the Tea parties (for I think they were like this before Obama). These are the two ends of the continuum which for me are dangerous for they are not balanced.


And just recently, Georgia’s Republican Paul Broun compared the President to Hitler after referencing a July speech given by Obama sayings “That’s exactly what Hitler did in Nazi Germany and it’s exactly what the Soviet Union did….when he’s proposing to have a national security force that’s answering to him, that is as strong as the U.S. military, he’s showing me signs of being Marxist.”

Now I am as hard on Obama as the GOP, if not harder. However, I deal with facts and policy not the person or individual. I feel that instead of a “post racial” America as many offered, we are instead in a “Neo-reconstruction” period similar to that during the Andrew Johnson Administration. It started a new Southern identity of white aristocratic supremacy which were mainly supported on racist viewpoints and prejudice that lead to the establishments of organizations such as the KKK. Today we see this same locution, one fueled by the fear of difference, which is often manifested in hate. Instead of the KKK, now we have white supremacist and the Tea Parties. People it has only just begun so hold your horses, we aint seen nothing yet. Remember reconstruction came about because of the emancipation of slaves and Black folks being able to hold elected political positions. But none of them were President. And as said in the post "Red Rum - such folks will do all in their power to make certain he fails.

Friday, October 16, 2009

ink and paper

Now I really wanted to call this post “Uncle Tom’s Dollar”, but I wanted to show I am not as uncouth, incorrigible and uncultured as I really am. Plus, If I did, I would have to point out how dumb and stupid and ill informed the folks many who may read my blog get they news from (folks on Fox and CNN) really are and I did not want to insult their ill informed and poorly readness (yep I made the word up). Besides I’m sure folk on TV have to spend their time looking at the cathode ray tube unlike me who would rather read a coupla few books and newspapers a week – especially when I don’t have to have a person select and pick what they think I want to hear or worse need to know. Now I have learned from my prior post that folks don’t like reading, even if it is between a page or two in length, and have limited knowledge of history. Well really, I have observed such and have not learned anything whatsoever for I am about to do the same thing again.

I have an affinity for loot, money, the dollar bill. But slowly I am loosing that affinity for it is not able to buy as much as it used too. Frankly I am afraid for if it keeps loosing its ability to get me the things I want, or if I have to use more of them to get what I want, then I speculate we will miss no longer being on a gold standard. I could go back to the Romans, or Hungary or even Serbia to explain what I see from what I know has happened in the past, but I wont. But I will say that what we are experiencing is eerily similar to what happened in Germany before the rise of Hitler and even more recently what has been going on in Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe is the first country in the 21st century that I know of to suffer from hyperinflation. On one extreme, which is extreme, we may find ourselves in the same position of Zimbabwe with respect to their hyperinflation. True, we aint taking land back from white farmers and giving to poor folks who don’t know how to run large farms and end up mismanaging them. But Obama is dead set on this redistribution of wealth as was (is) Mugabe. In Zimbabwe (a place I have been and surprisingly makes great wine also) put so much into spending on printing loot. Why, because the demand for cash was so great. Here, just like there, the depreciation of assets is way greater than investment, which led the to import capital from abroad.

This is very scary for a few reason, namely because they had to replace the Zimbabwe dollar with a foreign currency that was fully backed by a foreign reserve currency freely convertible at a fixed rate on demand. It was so bad there that commercial banks maybe in a position to issue their own private notes without government regulation (as was the case here before the civil war prior to Lincoln issuing the Greenback).

The Germany situation is a lot more closer because the devaluation of the Mark they suffered was the result of waging a war they loss (can you say Afghanistan and Iraq). After WW 1, Germany had to make reparation payment as well as keep its industrial economy running. Problem was that they were no longer on the gold standard. When mark lost value, corporations cut jobs, paid workers less and produced cheaper goods for exports. This is especially true when there is in an economic crisis or a war, the pressure to inflate becomes overwhelming.

Now I don’t THINK we are or will be experiencing hyperinflation. But I do several things I have observed now and before in history. One, that as in Germany, retailers shelves are not selling and are not as stocked as before the recession, meaning its hard for us to make a profit. Two, I see more empty commercial real-estate. Three, the government has no adequate income thus I think will be forced to raise taxes (which they will not collect given the present climate and will have to print more money or worse borrow more abroad).

In essence our government will monetize debt. I mean what else can you do when we build a big azz deficit. All the Federal Reserve does is buys bonds trying to stabilize the market, which means they just printing loot on the invisible security of these bonds. If history teaches anything, it is that government cant be trusted to manage loot as this clock shows with respect to the US. When currency is not redeemable in gold, its value depends entirely on the judgment and the conscience of the politicians. All money is a matter of belief and the Obama administration shows a willingness to tolerate a weaker currency in an effort to boost exports and the economy as long as it doesn’t drive away the nation’s creditors. Problem is that world wide folks getting rid of dollars with the quickness. Even here in the states. Banks are increasing foreign currency holdings and since 1999, holdings in US Dollars have dropped from 63 percent in 1999 to 37 percent currently. Yep, the dollar is almost worthless, but why shouldn’t it be, after all its just paper and ink.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

will we ever learn

Ok, if I am not mistaken, we have just passed the eight year mark of being in Afghanistan. Yet our idiot politicians and media dumb fcks seem to not understand or know what is being done and worse, what should be done. They are so caught up on this us versus them mentality among themselves, that they, like a wine sauce, have been reduced to bickering and pointing fingers among each other.

But such is the nature of supremacist, who tend to take the Alexander Pope purview of the world as being the center of the Universe. As a former Western power attempting to reclaim our global throne, we don’t get it and miss the picture completely. Albeit we talk a good game regarding a geopolitical strategy that includes Pakistan when we speak of Afghanistan, our policy and actions state otherwise and we have no firm objective for we have not or cannot learn from the lessons of history or geography.

To begin, Pakistan was formed in 1947, after India gained independence from Great Britain. as a homeland for India's Muslim population. I even remember when it was divided into East and West Pakistan. What we call Pakistan today is really West Pakistan since in the early 1970s, East Pakistan succeeded after war to become what is now Bangladesh. A similar history can be said with respect to its neighbor Afghanistan. What is consistent about both nations is their history of colonial interference and the impact of imperialism, as well as the presence of Muslim Nationalism. Add to that a history of incessant marginalized citizenship by the west and the problem begins.

First, in both countries, the majority ethnic group is the Pashtun (Muslims) and Pakistan was founded on the equation Pakistani=Muslim. This is our problem for what we see is not seen by the folks who live in both countries for they cannot visualize, and rightly so, the Taliban being terrorists in their own land. Not to mention we have yet to put any substantive efforts to get the figure head of Kabul, Karzai and Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari together on the same page.

What we as imperial and colonialist nations of the past fail to integrate into present problem solving regarding the region is that both Afghanistan and Pakistan’s political mode of operandi has never been accountable, especially with respect to international and geopolitical measures for the central dogma for both is based on radical Islamic doctrine. We never speak in terms of politics and solutions just in aggression and ego. Pakistan’s largest mainstream religious political parties, the Jamaat-e-Islami and Jamaat-e-Ulema-Islami, freely support the Taliban openly, even against the country's own military. And we cannot complain for we in addition to the Saudi’s started this with our anti-Soviet mujahedeen movement in Afghanistan some 25 to 30 years ago.

America really aint concerned about winning the war as it is on the image of winning. Which shows me we learned nothing from Russia’s adventure for not only was its image damaged by getting it’s ass whupped but also for wasting billions of dollars it spent during the war. In fact it could be suggested the ferocity and venom the US and NATO faces there currently is a consequence of the hatred that developed for richer western nations. Strange aint it: we gave the Afghan guns and anti-aircraft missiles that shoot and kill our troops today. Just like the Russians who went into Afghanistan in 1979, we too want to influence the region politically.

Truth be told Hamid Karzai aint jack and only has power and control, if that, in the capitol. The rest of the country is under the Taliban and tribal Klan leaders. I just wonder if 200 to 300 thousand soviet and Afghan troops, funded by heroin loot ,could not defeat the Pashtuns in ten years, what can we and NATO forces do?

We will never get it, in math we have least common denominators, not in American politics for all politicians, especially if they are Republican or Democrats are the same. Truth is that the Pashtun will always support their own, which are the Taliban as history has shown us. Alexander the Great conquered Afghanistan but had to leave as did the colonialist East India Company after an unprofitable occupation. And I won’t even mention the Persians (Iranians) or the Mongols. Again, we seem not to know history or even worse learn from history. We look for Osama bin Laden like the British did searching the Fakir of Ippi for more than 20-years - who was never caught and died in 1960.

We call our mission "anti-terrorist" and the people in the aforementioned countries see it as anti-Pashtun. They see it as another Anglo-Afghan War like that in 1880. The Russians did not plan or prepare adequately for their mission in Afghanistan nor did they study or learn from history. And like the Russians, we still cant connect history or its lessons with the influential role of Islam in the Afghan and Pakistan social order. We, the US fail to see or connect that our concerns in both nations, especially Pakistan is associated with the aforementioned. The recent increase in attacks, like the car bomb last week outside the Indian Embassy in Afghanistan's capital demonstrates the resolve of the people connected to the area; not the Taliban. In 1989, Soviet forces left Afghanistan. Billions of dollars had been spent annually in Afghanistan and at one point there were at least 200,000 troops there yet they were not able to defeat the mujahidin we train and funded.

Currently, we and NATO side with Afghan President Hamid Karzai, who will get a second term when we know it was full of fraud. This is why Obama's Afghanistan is even more tumultuous. He supports the ineptness of Afghan President Hamid Karzai, who in order to have won, besides cheating, had to deal with corrupt politicians and "warlords" to win the recent elections. This means that Pashtuns, who we know hate the Taliban, will deal with their brothers and family any way even if the disagree politically about the future vision of both countries because the have even more disdain for ANY Army backed by foreign nations, even the US.

Yet we make it all worse by giving the Pakistani government loot and arm twisting, to wage battle against their own kind, the Pashtun people. We the same country that funded and supplied the Taliban and Pashtun to overthrow an Afghan government buttressed by Russia. In fact the Clinton White House encouraged Pakistan to help put the Taliban in Kabul. All we really care about are natural resources and to make Afghanistan and Pakistan lever arms of our geo-political goals.

Again, I don’t blame Obama, but I note his ineptness and ignorance. Now true he is not as ignorant as the former president, but ignorant none the less. Afghanistan has never been colonized and in their eyes they see, the Pashtuns, no difference in the borders of the two nations western colonial and imperial powers created. We just don’t see or get it.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

just run the offense

I am very frightened for the time being, especially when I think of how far K street loot can go to get lobbyist to do un-American things. And on the backside of that is that the administration, from my understanding, is talking to me as if I am stupid. More amazingly is the number of regular folk in my community who don’t know or understand and just reduce it to the event of having a black man in office who inherited the problems of a white man.

It is not that bland or myopic for me, for all I really see the President as is a job description. One that has on the first line, the ability to be deceitful and masterful in the art of double speak via lies, misinformation or silence. Obama and the rest of the folk on Capitol Hill and Wall Street are not being honest with us, the American populous. They tell us that things are ok, that the economy is improving but the reality is that it is not.

Both the Treasury and the Federal Reserve were and are well aware of the troubles which the nine big banks in America face yet feel obligated to tell us otherwise, that the banks are in good shape, improving and that the $125 Billion we gave them has proved successful – not. The reason why I suspect is because these banks and lenders can’t collect on more than 20 percent of their loans, most of which are (non current) 90 days overdue. We have had almost 100 Banks fail thus far this year (which I predicted last year) and a 41 percent increase in personal bankruptcies over the last 12 months. The FDIC even projects more than 400 banks may fall as well. And these are not the Wall street folk, but the folk who be putting cash into mainstream America mostly through investing in your local strip mall and other commercial real estate.

Moreover, when we loose 16K to 67K in jobs on a given day as some papers have documented, things are not getting any better soon (next 3 years). It’s not a good sign. For me, when I see companies cutting 20% of their work force, it tells me about the future, and a future that is one of reduced sales and profits. I also know that the number is paraded out in front of me as the national unemployment rate as if it was in the Rose bowl aint the true value (as we stay in statistics when we speak of error). The model used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics attempts to estimate new job formation caused by the birth and death of businesses and as a result added more than 900,000 jobs when the compute overall unemployment. Which tells me that the true figure may be 20 percent or more?

We lost 263,000 jobs in September making by government number, more than 15 million unemployed since last December. Now I won’t ride the President for trying to get the Olympics, albeit he should have known that there has never been one in South America, and figured up front our odds were reduced. However I will ride him on this focus on healthcare especially since the economy is way more important that that. To me his health plan is more of a mandate and tax. Telling me I have to have to purchase insurance is an economic issue more so than health one to me since it would become a part of the Internal Revenue Code and that failing to comply "could be criminal” - punishable by the $25,000 fine or jail time under Section 7203. I do not know about others, but it is hard for me to accept the prospect of the government mandating for me to pay for and to have a service I may or may not want. Tell me where is it written that in order to be a lawful citizen of this country that I have to buy any good or service? The dollar aint worth jack anyway, especially after the power move the Arab states just made. Mr. President and his flunkies, get your head back in the game, study your playbook and just stick to the offense, run the offense and stop diddle daddling around before we put yo but on the bench

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

bet they wanna be rappers

It is apparent for me that we have some serious problems in our community. I mean serious, for any time a young man walking home from school can be beaten to death, in day light, while folks watch and think nothing of it, and even video it without considering that said person may need help, or what they are watching is not right, is a true indication that something is amiss in our beliefs and world view.

I have noticed that there is a difference in general behavior when I look and my parents, myself and the present generation. As a father with a 17 year old son, I am proud to have been a part in raising a fine and responsible young man. An honor student, an athlete and a gentlemen is what best describes my son, yet although he has made it to the 12th grade, I still worry and pray that he continues on his path of success with the next pointy of entry being graduation.

Often we fail to see the difference between blame and problem solving in such matters. Fo9r we get defensive and tend to see ourselves in the problems that we are confronted with. Whether it is that we are single parents, or our environments, we forget that the issue is not blame or deflecting blame but solving the problem. It is not difficult for me to discern what the differences are. I can reduce them to one simple area – media influences. My folks didn’t have to deal with television at all and the music, well let us say it was not as graphic and vivid as it was in my day. In contrast, I grew up with 4 channels on television and they went off before midnight, and the music, albeit it was the beginning of hip hop – the lyrical content was mild compared to today.

It is no wonder that we have folks feeling and displaying penchants that evince appropriate behavior as beating someone to death or watching someone getting beat to death without the consideration of helping. I won’t blame this all on parents, for objectively; I know they can’t control the media influences that bombard their children each day of their formative years. And I know folk will say media, or movies or music cannot make a person do something – I agree, but they can impact the way folks think and define personal standards of behavior. For example, I would assert that most African American males currently would have desires to be professional athletes, producers, Dj’s and rappers because of what they see. Not the jobs per say, but rather the fame and avarice and wealth associated with the aforementioned. Especially the music. I bet if I went down the playlist of any top urban radio station – I will see the likes of idiots inclusive of Gucci Mane, Jeezy, Lil Wayne, Jay-Z and Plies. Songs that contain lyrics espousing staying strapped, shooting folk, fucking ever girl in the world, and having pockets full of money and following ones owns rules.

So understand where I am coming from, and feel my pain as a parent for although Derrion Albert was not my blood, he was my son and I have no problem pointing fingers at the folks above for five to one, the folks who did the beating probably know all the lyrics to your songs more than the formula for slope/intercept and even worse, want to be rappers. The new KKK strikes again so let us bow our head in silence for we still dont know that we are both the hunted and the prey.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

no such thing as a jobless recovery

Ok, let me get this out the way, I am sick and tired of this wagging the dog health care debate. A few weeks ago, I pointed out that 80 banks had failed. As of yesterday 91 had fallen victim to poor fiscal responsibility and lack of federal and state over sight.

I still see no real change or attention focused on our economic quandary. Seems to me even the general public doesn’t care. I mean I suspect most folks are employed so really do not have a vested interest in the issue, unlike me who has to pay himself as a small business owner and one who sees business after business around me close and vacant retail space amass like bubbles in bath water. I have patiently been trying to give the current administration a chance to show some balls and actually take this bull by the horns and make some real structural reforms such to get our financial system stabilized and to squash this problem. How ever, Obama has done much to do about nothing from my objective prism. I mean, I’m tired of this “to big to fail argument” that is recanted like some type of witches spell without defining what to big to fail means or describing the process by which such a determination is made. We have had 9 big bail outs over the last score of years and yet our current president still replicates the stupidity of a man who said that he was “suspending the principals of free market to save free markets” – George Bush. Obama has made no structural changes with respect to what has gotten us in this position and even worse, has the same minds over the problem who contributed to this problem.

I know that health care reform is his baby, but who needs or can afford health care if one is broke? Not me, gimme some loot and the ability to make loot. All the money you gave to big banks cant be accounted for and isn’t doing what the present administration described it would – restore credit and lending and remove toxic assets off the books of banks who got our loot. This incessant focus on health care is not as essential as focusing on the economy and anyone who disagrees can kick boulders barefooted. Unemployment is at a 26 year high and all I am hearing is shit about a public option and illegal aliens. Teen unemployment is at 25 percent and speaking of toxic assets, we still don’t know what is on the books of these banks we gave our loot too. I’m not the sharpest knife in the drawer but I can speculate that toxic assets in the form of retail commercial real estate that has lost maybe half their value and credit card receivables that I am sure have declined due to folks loosing their jobs or houses, have decreased as well.

Folk, I was born here and this descendent of slaves cares more about me being able to feed my kids than getting a H1N1 vaccine. We cannot bail out folk with non performing assets yet over look us at the bottom of the food chain. I do not know if Obama really cares more about health care or the bank lobby is really that strong. What ever the case, I know that credit markets are still frozen and that the artificial bubble we see in the stock market may be a function of the poorly thought out “too big to bail” mantra. Please show me some or at least one new regulatory reform. Mr. Obama your administration aint done jack, nada. I want you to succeed but your inactivity and bush economic copy catting aint gone do nothing because we will see more bank failures due to commercial bank failures for the next few years. Ones, don’t give the FDIC more of my money if you do not take this seriously, for I firmly believe that I do not need health care if I cant pay my mortgage, feed my kids, and I am broke. Aint no such thing as a jobless recovery mane.

PS – will deal with them racist over the weekend

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

idiot idolatry

I have come to concede that it is not the H1N1 or HIV that is the scourge of American culture, but rather ignorance. And not any ignorance, but the blinded kind that is accentuated by our inundation with celebrity. And I’m not gonna hat, for the simple reason although I don’t understand why someone would want to watch a person get a moon man over the first day of NFL football, I do accept that accidents happen.

It is just strange to me that folk all up in arms when someone they see on TV or a movie screen die than they are the economy, something that actually impacts me, or stick up for a person with no home training as the obvious case with Joe Wilson or Kanye West and not even talk or assert caring about how Wall Street Corporate CEOS aint been indicted or held accountable for getting us in this economic quandary. And yea, you can quote me, “I don’t give a fuck about Bich azz Kanye West “ and I think any person who would support is 4th grade behavior is a feculent groupie or fool and likely look at TV more than they read. I tell you this, if he took the mic from my son or daughter, he would have his teeth kicked down his throat again.

I say this just to use my professional expertise to assert that we have become a nation of idiots as a result of our incessant Idolatry. We have lost our way, we move from Martin King Jr. to getting a black man in the office of the Presidency, to just being happy that he is there and feeling that we do not need to struggle anymore as if we have succeeded. We have not and some folks inability to care is worse than the actually commitment of the crime for more times than not, they will be the first to complain without being informed. Such saddens me. To me Hank Greenberg needs to be under the jail and even worse that folk wont know who he is but know about dirty dance dude who died, how many songs on Jay – Z new album and Kayne West bich azz antic on a movie awards show.

So Yawl can say what yawl want about me. I don’t know or care about none of these folks don’t know like or as if I know them. In fact the only celebrities I know are my kids and my family. If yawl were about anything you would be talking about the ones you love more than these other folk even Michael Jackson. That is just really real from folk here jones.

Monday, September 14, 2009

flu over Cuckoo's nest

Sorry I aint been posting to regularly, but best believe I’ve been writing : going over my next book of short stories and finalizing these plays, and writing a screen play called TOOL MAN SON. But with that said, creativity fosters more appreciation within this soma than sharing my erudite yet terse toilet sitting on contrived ruminations on current discourse. But I have to drop a few lines on this Swine Flu stuff, since all my folks been asking my recommendation as a scientist about the shots being handed out like free bubble gum.

It just strikes me as strange that the swine flu is renamed and talked up all of a sudden as if it was Ali vs. Frazier I. Government officials all across the country have been running around as if the sky is falling. They have been doing everything from rewriting disaster plans and stocking up on masks and even drugs that they don’t even know will work. More than half of Germans indicate that they do not want to take the shot and recently, here in the US, we have found out that our federal government has paid Novartis (based in Switzerland) and GlaxoSmithKline (UK) more than 400 million for vaccines made with adjuvant (a substance which isn't approved by the Food and Drug Administration).

The swine flu virus, which is now called H1N1, may infect up to half the U.S. population. Thus a justification for all the loot already spent/wasted on the make believe pandemic. The feds have already sent $350 million to state and local governments, $90 million to assist hospitals and emergency rooms get ready. Add to this that Obama wants to The Obama administration will spend an additional $2.7 billion to buy swine flu vaccines, that we don’t even know if they will work.

All this fro0nting really makes me speculate that something else is going on, mean when was the last time folks in America spoke of forcefully quarantine people in the event of a Swine Flu pandemic. The "Pandemic Response Bill" would allow the state to forcefully quarantine people in the event of an outbreak plus even put folks in jail and fine them for $1000 a day if they refuse to comply. It would also let health providers forcefully vaccinate folk without their permission and authorize forcible entry into private homes for such purposes.

My concern, at least one of them is that the seasonal-flu kills more folks and infects more folks annually than this flu and don’t get no love – it like some body wants this in the news for reason yet to be discerned from my peanut sized brain. Then they don’t know how many shots will be required. It could consist of two shots but no matter what, you know it will be given to at-risk populations first. Truth is Obama nor scientist actually know if the vaccine will do anything, to prevent or minimize the flu. Not to mention will likely contain a form of mercury called thimerosal. It has also been asserted that this new form of the wine flu is also birds as well as humans. Yes it is or maybe the result of human laboratory manipulation encompassing the North American avian flu and a form of human flu. I also want to what is the rush and why is it that Health Secretary Kathleen Sebelius is so anxious to get this vaccine out on the market?

I still remember the last time the US had an outbreak when mass vaccinations led cases of a rare disease called Guillain-Barre syndrome – which temporarily paralyzes parts of the nervous system. Not to mention this may all be a sign of the chickens coming home to roost. Especially if the article I read in nature about five years ago was true - the one that described how a team of US scientist lead by Dr Yoshihiro Kawaoka of the University of Wisconsin manipulated the 1918 "Spanish" flu pandemic virus to make a new killer Flu virus. So to me all of this is foul, impractical and borders on quackery to me. Giving out a virus that is rushed to be developed and placed on the market because of a media campaign is not smart nor scientifically supported. Moreover, I would like to accept my warnings from other scientist not me and not politicians or elected/appointed public health officials who could not tell the difference between mutation and selective adaptation. So when folks ask me, I don’t go Cuckoo of getting this vaccine and tell them “I wouldn’t get it.” Maybe wrong, but I feel better knowing I have used reasoning to decide such over fear.

Saturday, September 05, 2009

i dont want to be successful

As I type, I am back home in Memphis. I haven’t written much lately and I am back because my granny is very sick, in fact don’t know how much she has left in this temporal world we term life. Just two years ago I lost my other grand mother and if you are a faithful reader of mine you would recant the post, which I called a diamond treated like glass.

I know they will never be away from me, for I live them and the words of wisdom and lessons of life in my heart daily. One of which was to never compete and that never settle to just be successful. In their eyes anyone could be successful and with hard work and confidence it was my mandate to be great. Maybe that is why I never really desired to be successful. I always wanted to be great and was inspired that I was great since I was knew high to my granny’s waist.

You see, I was blessed. I was raised in a time when things were not cars or clothes or money but how you developed and created and achieved with ones mind and work effort. It was not just enough to be successful for back then, successful folks just got theirs, moved away and never returned to their community in spirit or through life. It is a difference that is extremely noticeable today – the penchant for things ones own to define themselves as opposed as the accomplishment that leads other to achieve greatness outside of the isolation of others.

For us, it was historically our accord to be great for greatness would never be obviated from ones life the way material goods and wealth can. For wealth in heart is that of love and the joys of GOD. It is how we speak to others and listen t others as equals. It regards the vision of being a group as opposed to an individual. It is the locution of sharing as opposed to hoarding and knowing that I am no better nor worse than the next person.

So I am here in Memphis, where I was born and raised, and I am under my grand mother, bathing her, changing her gown, letting her play with my hair and hold my hand as she goes to sleep. I hope she is here for longer than the weekend, albeit she has stopped eating and my mother and her sisters think she doesn’t have to long to be with us. But I know she will always be here in my heart, and can tell by the way she hugged me and went to sleep with me in her arms last night like I was still 3 years old. I just wish Trey Songz and Drake had the type of influence I had to be great – for being successful is not enough and just wont cut it in this day and age.

Monday, August 31, 2009

money in the bank?

I have often wondered if it was in the best interest of America for our President or any President to bite off or do more than they can chew. I say this not to point fingers but rather because I feel as if we have not really addressed the seriousness of our current economic conundrum. Last year I made a prediction that about 100 more banks would fail this year, so fare more than 80 have and there are four more months left until 2010. This past Friday, two banks and one thrift failed. These included Bradford Bank of Baltimore, Main Street Bank of Forest Lake, Minn. and Affinity Bank of Ventura, Calif. Just the week before four banks failed including ebank of Atlanta, First Coweta Bank of Newnan, Ga., CapitalSouth Bank of Birmingham, Ala. Guaranty Bank of Austin, Texas (which the FDIC sold all of the bank's retail deposits to the main U.S. subsidiary of Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria).

This is somewhat unsettling, especially given all this spending of a so-called stimulus that only seems to get allocated in New York on Wall Street as well as the suggestion that over the next 2 years maybe an additional 1000 banking institutions are anticipated to fail. The issue for me is that it appears that none of the Bear Stearns folk like Sumner, or the current Fed Chairman are interested in Main Street as much as they say. It is obvious giving loot to New York Banks ain’t helping anyone since most failed banks tend to be smaller and private, which makes things even worse for small business owners such as me.

It makes me think that the current administration, the Federal Reserve and the FDIC are all in this together to stump out small business and engender the death of we the people for big corporations and the K street lobby. The Federal Insurance Deposit Corporation recently just implemented new restrictions on private equity firms that are trying to purchase failed institutions. It may be a little to late since they no longer have the funds available in insure all of the account holders in America and because they have allowed the over zealous and aggressive practices to occur unmitigated with respect to buying failed institutions.

What I can see is that even with all this, things will only get worse and that the FDIC and Federal Reserve are still not ready, prepared or able to deal with the impending wave of bank failures to come. Not to mention that they still aint figured out what to do with the billions of dollars of troubled assets it has stuck some where on its books. Plus the fact that its pockets have been depleted with reports of the $52.8 billion it had on hand last year has been reduced to about $13 billion.

The future of our economic system is only getting bleaker unlike what is reported in our media. The market is artificially inflated with the help of crooks the likes of Lawrence Summers, Robert Rubin and Ben Shalom Bernanke will be the death of America and main street and Obama cant even see it coming, but I know they do for the got money in the bank and will be sitting pretty living high off the hog as the rest of us suffer. Maybe this is why they are pushing for control of the internet, so folk like me cant spread the word they way things did in Iran during their recent election - just a guess.