Tag Archives: economy

Getting Israel behind us – Let God give them financial aid and weaponry

Stand with Israel harper tx

Hi readers.  Thanks for coming by for a read.

Back during the Yom Kipper War, Six Days War, one of those, I recall a friend named Victor Sturm, an atheist, commenting the Israeli military prowess was almost enough to make him believe in God.  I think that was true for most of us, whether we were atheists, or not.  Israel’s always been easy to support.

During all those years everyone I was acquainted with felt badly about what was done to the Jews in Germany, and supporting the secular state of Israel seemed one of the ways to compensate.  In those days television would play a German Holocaust movie at the drop of a hat to keep it fresh on the minds.  I recall during the Cambodian killing fields times the only thing competing on television was constant reminders of the German camps.  Same was true when millions of Biafra folks were dying like flies.  It was always “Yeah, but look what happened in Germany to Jews!”

Well, we’re a lot more informed these days.  Germany was one of the places where one hell of a lot of people were systematically persecuted and killed.  One of the places, and Jews were one of the targets.

Fact is nobody cares about all that.  Nobody cares about atrocities and genocides.  Including Israel.  Nobody lifted a finger to stop Cambodia, Biafra, and a dozen other places where the death counts got into six figures or higher.  And WWII sure as hell wasn’t fought about what Germans were doing in those camps to Jews and Gypsies.  Nor what the Japanese were doing to the Chinese and other countries they occupied.

Justifying US involvement in WWII because of Hitler’s camps is pure fabrication by hindsight.  Nobody before Pearl Harbor gave a popcorn fart what Hitler was doing to Jews.  And the Jews fleeing Germany were having one hell of a time finding any country willing to take them.  They were stacking up like cordwood in Spain and Portugal because Britain, the US and almost everyone else didn’t want any more than they had already.

So when the dust settled Israel was formed to assuage the guilt feelings of the US population, the British, everyone who sat by with their thumbs up their butts at a time when they might have saved a lot of lives.  Christian religious fanatics in all the civilized countries loved the idea.  It carried the undertone suggesting somehow God was involved in all this, letting his Chosen People return to the Promised Land.

It might have worked out fairly well.  If Israel hadn’t turned out to be as savage, greedy and lacking in human compassion as the rest of humanity, it could have worked out.  Likely as not they could have settled in, shaken hands with the new neighbors and worked together to make the world a better place.

But that couldn’t happen.  Israel was won by terrorism and terrorists, and it’s continued to indulge in State terrorism from the day it was founded.  The Israeli government continues to grab land outside the boundaries established by the United Nations, continues to slaughter the neighbors without conscience, and blames everything on the people they’re robbing and slaughtering.

And nobody’s quicker on the draw with playing the race card than Israeli supporters.  Anyone who tries to examine the behavior of Israel critically is immediately accused of hating Jews, being an anti-Semite.  It’s happened right here in the comments of blog posts whenever Israel received critical examination.  Or even in response to pleas that they resort to peace occasionally just for the novelty.

Savagery and blaming the victims, same as the US has done countless times in countless places.  Same as the Russians, the Japanese, the Chinese, the British, the French.

Hell, the contagion of being Chosen People must have been awfully damned infectious to have infected so much of humanity with Hebrew Biblical behavior.

Israel has passed the Modern Civilization 101 course in greed, aggression, brutality, callous disregard for human suffering and tedious self-aggrandizement.  It’s time to put them up there with the Great Nations and let them sink or swim among the sharks.

I think they might make it for a while.  Because when we have to get along with our neighbors to survive, we tend to become circumspect and reasonable in ways we’d never thought of when we were being mollycoddled and pampered as though we could do no wrong.

The US is bankrupt, though it doesn’t admit it.  Our industry’s all gone to Asia.  Our weaponry’s all designed and manufactured by Asians.  A time is coming when US foreign aid will be a footnote in history.  Along with US military prowess.

But we can be confident Israel will probably be the recipient of the last US foreign aid dollar to be sent anywhere, despite famines and disease where they really need it.

Old Jules

 

 

Community ‘Personalities’

Hi readers.  This town where Jeanne lives and I currently reside on her couch gave me a strange arrangement of ponderings yesterday.  I knew my physical therapy at the hospital will be fading in July.  By coincidence the Olathe Community Center is opening, and I’d heard it would include exercise machines, etc.

By golly I don’t ignore coincidence.  Figured I could buzz over there three times a week as long as I’m here, work out, maybe connect with local seniors to play some chess, chew the fat, exchange low sodium recipes.  Old guys did those things on the Courthouse lawn when I was a kid, playing dominoes and spitting tobacco.  A piece of getting old.

To my surprise, that new Olathe Community Center is a bastion of healthiness, classes on Zombi or somesuch dancing, Yoga, big TV screens people can watch while stationary biking.  A room full of water capable of being peed into from everywhere within 100 yards any direction.  Maybe a hundred walking machines, weight machines, and combinations of all three.

And for kids?  Wow.  Two story water slide indoors with signs saying they don’t want heart patients [me] using it.  Piss on them.  I’ll use that thing if I want to.

Because in that entire enormous structure there is not one, not one single item specifically intended to be used by the elderly.  Not one ping-pong table, for that matter, to allow fast action small area activities, either.

I’d been casually searching for some while for a Senior Citizen Center in Olathe.  There ain’t one, even though the senior population here’s quite large.  Closed down a couple of years ago when the city sold the building, never reopened somewhere else.

Fairly strange.  A rich, rich, how you say, affluent community here with a large area of old, low-income houses in the older part of town inhabited by lower middle class non-upwardly mobile working-class scum and senior citizens.  And that new community center forgot they exist.

Hell, every tiny community everywhere has a Senior Citizen Center, or failing that, a pantheon of senior activities incorporated into the local community center.  Andrews, Texas, out on the high plains desert has a big one.  Half deserted towns all over Texas and New Mexico dying of thirst and hunger have one thing left functioning:  Senior Citizen Centers.

And this beautiful old farming community that’s become the home of thousands of high-income soccer and tennis playing SUV driving tofu eating Kansas Citians during the past 20 to 30 years has the singular distinction of having nothing of the sort.

Jeanne’s jobs are over in the neighborhood of Lenexa. Another grown-over KC bedroom community.  And when she got tired of my berating Olathe regarding the new Community Center and the implied attitude toward senior citizens she took me over there.  They’ve got a center about the size of one in Zuni, New Mexico, or Andrews, Texas.  About the size of each of the three in Kerrville, Texas.

Fine people over there in Lenexa.  We got there around noon, just looking around.  Maybe fifty people hanging around in there chewing the fat.  A lady running the place came up, introduced herself, showed us around.  Full of enthusiasm, got more programs going on than you could shake a stick at.  Even computers, computer instruction.

I asked about chess.  “We don’t have a chess program, but we can!  You can be the first one to get it started!”  Turns out they have a couple of exercise machines, too.  ping-pong table’s next door at the ‘regular people [read upwardly mobile SUV driving, tofu eating] living in Lenexa. 

Well, they ain’t new, and they ain’t as close as the brand spanking new shiny Olathe Community Center full of water sports and rosy-cheeked mamas with healthy white kids screaming their heads off.  But if I’m around here a while and decide to do anything senior citizen-wise, I have a feeling I’ll either try out Lenexa or go another few miles out and do it in a place where they still have real people driving 15-year-old pickups.

If such places still exist. 

Might even swing over into Missouri, where they remember what Jayhawk meant back when it actually meant something.  Lots of little towns over that way still no further than this from the VA Medical Center.  I’m betting they have senior citizen centers, too.

Not to say it’s a big item for me.  I honestly don’t like senior citizens all that much.  Too opinionated, though not as bad as younger people.  But old folks tend to be fairly obnoxious, on the whole.  I don’t blame Olathe Parks and Recreation Department for trying to forget they exist.  Old bastards need to check in at the Emergency Room down at the City Morgue.

 Old Jules

Hyundai – Jeanne’s new ride

Hi readers.  Jeanne’s 1991 Oldsmobile’s headed for someone poorer and more desperate than she is.  Found herself a spanking new Hyundai with less than 100,000 miles on it and less than a decade old.  Ran it through all the mechanic pre-purchase checks and online automotive and title histories, and concluded it might be okay.

Maybe it will.  The Oldsmobile was doing some threatening and complaining it wasn’t getting enough treasure spent keeping it running.  So I hope the Hyundai measures up and lasts a while.

I’m thinking it’s named after a place I visited in Korea while I was on leave, travelling around site seeing.  Went somewhere, Taegue I think, saw a giant Buddha, rode a coal fired train around all over the countryside.  And came to Hyundai down the other side of the bay from Pusan.  Beautiful place.

Beautiful place all to hell, it was.  Trees blooming, a serene bay with all manner of Chinese junk looking boats and smaller boats with wiggletails used as oars.

People around Hyundai didn’t see much of GIs, same as up at Taegu.  I spent 30 days travelling around and a week-or-so at Hyundae.  A fond memory I hadn’t remembered until Jeanne decided on that car.

Hell of a deal.

Old Jules

Iraq? US? Weird weird weird! How many trillion did you say?

Hi readers.  Nowhere in the modern world.  Maybe nowhere in the history of the planet has a nation squandered such treasure and so many lives for absolutely nothing.

Nothing.

Iraq.   I-freaking-rock.  Invaded the damned place twice.  Presidents of both parties sent men and women to waste away there, then left Iraq in chaos and ruin for the first set of armed fanatics to arrive.  From all directions.

Hell, the French caused the Vietnam War and a lot of what’s happening in the Arab lands today in their incompetent dealings with their vanished empire, but they’d have to tip their hats to us on this.  They only lost Algeria and Vietnam etc, and their own country to the Germans.  And they did most of it with money from US taxpayers by pretending to have been an ally during WWII so’s we owed them money to rebuild. 

But even with US money the French couldn’t get up there in the neighborhood of a billion dollars a day.

It took two Bushes, a Clinton, and this guy now to pull that off.

So now nobody knows where any of the borders are to Iraq, and the only people who probably won’t end up with a piece of it are the Israelis.  Not for lack of wishing, threatening with nuclear weapons,  and thumb sucking.  Be assured.

US foreign policy use to make a certain amount of sense unless you viewed it from a distance.  But I think we’ve finally reached the point where it ceased making any sense and nobody in his right mind would attempt to make sense of it.

That way lies madness.

Olde Jules

 

Some lessons learned from the 20th Century

Hi readers.  If we didn’t learn anything from the 20th Century, it wasn’t from lack of opportunities. 

For instance, 

  1. we should have learned not to get into any wars, alliances, or trading partnerships with Japan.  We tried all three and each one ended a step closer to our economic destruction.  The US prospered until it became involved with Japan.
  2. We should have learned not to get into any wars, alliances or trading agreements with anyone on the Korean peninsula.  The US prospered until it became involved with people living on the Korean peninsula.
  3. We should have learned not to get into any wars, alliances or trading agreements with anyone in the Middle East.  Too confusing.  The US prospered until it got involved with people living in the Middle East.
  4. The US needs to prohibit more things and criminalize more things.  Many currently wealthy families, such as the Kennedys, arrived at wealth and power through the manufacture, transport and sale of prohibited substances.   Prohibiting things is win/win for the worthy who have the courage to break the laws, take the risks, and do a little discrete killing when needed.  The US prospers when the people who matter profit.  Prohibiting things raises profits similarly to the way wars raise profits for people who matter.
  5. Finally, we need to recognize once and for all we’re God’s Chosen People.  I wrote about this almost a year ago, but little has changed since then.  Why the Jews used to be God’s Chosen People but aren’t any moreThe time has definitely come to assume the crown, take responsibility for the burden we bear, and invade Mexico.

Remember where you heard it first.

Old Jules

Named a car Killed in Action? KIA? Hell, I suppose.

Hi readers.  From the Civil War until today KIA has meant Killed in Action.  Never meant anything else that I’m aware of.  Everyone knew what it meant.

So when I began noticing little medallions on cars with KIA on them a few years back I assumed it was some after-factory patriotic thing that didn’t make any more sense than all these damned Chinese-made ribbons demanding people support our troops, eat our veggies, and go to church Sundays.

Well, guess what.  It’s the name of a real, actual automobile manufactured in Korea.  A good one, I’m told.  Though its sales were probably slow off the starting line.  Who the hell wants a car with Killed in Action medallions all over it.

Jeanne’s car search has led her in the direction of KIAs because they have lousy resale value.  Those and Hyundai.  Both Korean.  I heartily approve because I’d hate to give any support at all to Japan, whether it’s the car industry used resales, or anything else.

And Koreans are good folks, even if you can’t understand their inscrutable senses of humor.  Naming a car Killed in Action, for instance.

Old Jules

Compared to Mexicans, American Indians don’t like stoop labor

Hi readers.

I’ve noticed American Indians prefer doctoring, or motel owning jobs over stoop labor, mowing grass, carpentry and other grunt jobs preferred by Mexicans.  My VA physician is an American Indian, and so’s my cardiologist.  Both of whom speak English at 7-9 on an understandability scale of 10.  Better than the clerk down at Walmart.

This got me wondering about Indians ‘back home’ where they came from and whether everyone in India is a doctor or motel owner.  I figured the Indian film industry would be a good start.  So I searched “India” on Netflix.  One of the [quaint word] films recently released by the Indians is EXPRESS TO CHENNAI.

http://youtu.be/4O4mNdMoxDM

Fun, interesting film.  WEST SIDE STORY, THE GODFATHER,  and NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC all wadded up into the same excellent movie.  Those Indians made me consider how much better off Hollywood would be if they just handed moviemaking over to the Indians, the way we’ve done with inventiveness, patent applications, doctoring, motel owning etc etc etc.

It’s a movie about the Indian mafia, about love and romance, about tourism, and it’s done in song and dance part of the time.  Freaking great movie.

I wouldn’t mind staying in a motel or getting a doctor working on my vitals if he comes from the country where EXPRESS TO CHENNAI was made.  Or his parents or grandparents came from there.

Unless they were poor, or huddled masses.  I’ve got no use having a Mexican doctor working on me. 

http://youtu.be/suJTY94dH1I

EL INFIERNO’s the best Mexican movie I’ve seen lately and I don’t care anything about having the people who made that one doing my cutting and pasting bodily.

Old Jules

Sure I’m poor, but I came by it honest.

Hi readers.  Thanks for coming by for a read.

The 20-30 people down at my physical therapy are surprisingly homogenous and I’m not saying anything about sexual preferences.  We’re all white, all but three are men, and all but two are above the age of 60.  The nurses, also are all white, but their ages cover a spread from around 30 to a cautious guess of 60.

So when I asked one of the nurses, “Where do you keep all your ethnics?” while she was taking g my blood pressure it seemed an obvious question.  An expression of surprise crossed her face and she flinched, or sort of jumped, then her eyes scanned the room and the people on all the machines. 

What do you mean?”   Seemed more of an accusation than question.

Hey, we all look alike in here.  Everyone here seems to be old, male, white and other than me, well-to-do.  All except me are fairly unpleasing to the eye.  Don’t people with skin pigment get cardiac problems?”  I was just wising off.  I already knew Olathe’s an affluent community and area.   But watching her facial reactions kept me at it.

 Anyway, the old guy at the NUSTEP machine next to me felt the need to set me straight when she went on to other matters.  “We’re not all well to do!”  He ground his teeth a bit.  “I used to be but I lost it all in 401Ks.”  His face was reddening and the blood vessels on his bald scalp were becoming visible.

Sure I’m poor.  But I got that way through honest hard work, good credit, bad marriages, and trusting the 401K people.  Not like these people who got born into it and didn’t get out because of shiftless laziness and rotten attitude.”  I finished my time about then and just grinned.  Couldn’t think of anything to say.

Damn I love that Physical Therapy at Olathe Hospital.  I’m going to be sorry when it runs out.

Old Jules

 

Real synthetic meat

Hi readers.  Thanks for coming by for a read.

Sitting around waiting rooms exposes a person to a lot of reading material he’d proabably never encounter otherwise.  Popular Science magazines are a favorite example for me.  They’ve always been great predictors of how our lives will be in the not-too-distant future.  As John Prine observed, “We’re all driving rocket ships and talking with our minds” here in this future we’re living in.

Anyway, the November, 2013 edition of Popular Science had a series of articles I found fascinating about some folks who are in the final phases of development of synthetic meats to replace those that came off living animals and poultry.  Indistinguishable from the real item.  Columbia University’s one of the places it’s happening, not because of better health, but because of the greenhouse gasses resulting from grazing livestock.

Evidently it’s so far along in getting it going they’re already producing real leather that never rode a cow for use on automobile upholstery, etc.  And they’re doing well with chicken, since almost everything tastes like chicken.

Naturally, if this doesn’t happen now it well be because the cow industry went in at night and destroyed everything they couldn’t buy up and squash.  It won’t be the fault of the lousy record Popular Science has in predicting the future.

Still, it’s nice to think of future generations being able to walk around in the woods without stepping on cow manure if they ever go outside.  And driving along rural highways in the west not having to see a yellow sign with a cow on it to warn there’s a rancher feeding his black cows on the pavement at dusk for the insurance.

Interesting stuff, and it ought to get more interesting.  Human beings ought to get a lot more violent in a world where there was no real meat that needed killing to take the edge off natural inclinations.  And thus far there’s been no mention of where Kosher fits into it all.  Synthetic pork might come from the factory Kosher and Jews and Muslims could start sitting down together to a nice ham instead of shooting one another.

Old Jules

21st Century Automotives

Hi readers.  Thanks for coming by for a read.

Jeanne’s ride, a 1991 Oldsmobile 98, tried to go kerplunk.  Her working two jobs and depending on it didn’t keep it from wearing out and the brakes going soft around the time I began borrowing it for physical therapy three times a week.

Well, I’m nothing if not confident when it comes to replacing master cylinders on vintage vehicles.  Hell I’ve done it over Christmas [you might recall] on an aging RV in the parking lot of an AutoZone in Big Spring, Texas while enjoying heart attacks on the side].  [ A merry little dumpster diving year-end adventure]

So I assured her I could replace that master cylinder in a New York minute.  Instead, what happened in a New York minute is the discovery I’ve got nothing in me if it’s strength or endurance you’re measuring.  So not far into the job she called her son, Michael, and I kibitzed while he changed it out.

Which is why I didn’t be the one to twist off the left front bleeder valve inside the wossname, como se llama caliper.  I was the one who did the talking at the parts houses trying to get a non-Chinese steel easy-out, buying one out of hunger that deformed and didn’t break, but also didn’t back out that bleeder valve.

So Jeanne took the Olds to the Firestorm store and got an estimate to fix it.  But they told her all manner of things else needed fixing amounting to 2000 3000 smackers.

So she went to the credit union and borrowed money hopefully enough to buy a car, an old one, but good, or better than the Olds.  Decided on a Subaru Forester or Toyota RVsomething, or Honda CRV with 150k miles or thereabouts.  Needs something high enough off the ground to go on unpaved roads sometimes.

A couple of Sikhs, offspring of Punjabi parents who migrated here in the what? 80s maybe, had one listed on Craigslist.  2002 Subaru Forester with 165000 miles that looked good and fit inside her budget with a little hammering.

Looked great.  So she had them hold it with $200 until she could have a mechanic go over it for another $100.  Mechanic says, “Subaru’s a great vehicle, but not this one.  You don’t want this one unless you want to spend $3000 trying to get it fixed.”

Hot damn.  They kept $100 of the earnest money, those Punjabi bastards, but agreed to pay for the mechanic examination.

No pain, no gain.  She told her boys to fix the damned brakes, replace the caliper on the Olds, that it didn’t look so bad after all.  What’s a bad radiator, electrical problems, rearview mirrors that flap in the wind and power windows going to hell among friends?

Maybe I could sell her the old 1978 Ford Econoline RV that has a new master cylinder and most of the damage of blown tires hidden out of sight underneath the truck.  Except I’m going to have to live in that again one day if I live so long.

Old Jules