Middle Man Economy


Any reasonable drug dealer strives to be worth enough to hire a middle man.  I mean, who wants to look into the eyes of the people’s lives they are ruining with addiction?

Line up the sales.  Make them desperate.  Have somebody else distribute.  Clear and free.

Maybe I’m making a case that drug dealers have a conscience?

Maybe they just want to believe their hands are clean?

The American economy is full of middle men.  Somebody has to make the exchange.

My wife works as a middle man for a major drug dealer.  It’s how we make ends meet anymore.

She slides on a blue smock, stands behind the counter, and exchanges drugs for cash.  Some are required to pay more than others.  Some pay out with more money than my wife makes in an entire week just to keep their hands from shaking each month.  Some are clearly sacrificing more than any human should just to get rid of a little pain.

The pharmaceutical companies do not have a conscience.  I’m not going to pretend they do.  They just need addicts’ neighbors to distribute for them.  To put a face on their company.  To give addicts a person to be angry with.  To make the exchange easier on both sides.

And she stands there behind that counter yesterday with that blue smock on trying to be as pleasant as possible asking people if they are getting ready to watch the local NFL team play.

Because that’s what good middle men do.  They make the exchange easier.

And one by one, she told me, the resident addicts of this redneck town told the middle man that they will not be watching the game.  Something turned this town full of a flag waving, window decal sporting, jersey flaunting, house painting, firework exploding football junkies off.

I don’t like what these players are doing, they would tell the middle man as cash was exchanged for drugs time after time.  They should not be taking a knee.  I’m boycotting the NFL.

In the American economy sandwich the middle man is the meat.  Peanut butter if you’re vegetarian.  The filling has dealers as one slice of bread and addicts as the other.  Corporations are not selling toast.  They are a slice of bread which needs the filling in order to keep consumers attached.

The addicts.

And my wife middle man kept her mouth shut as one by one the addicted helped spread misinformation fed to them by the middle men on television.  Fed to them by the middle man in the White House.  The corporations assigning the middle men to misinform the addicted of what is really happening in this country.

Nobody has been assigned to tell the addicts that racism is real.  Nobody.

Instead they deliver and deal.  They exchange your allegiance for misinformation on infinite repeat.  It’s quite damaging.

2016-10-02-15-21-54.jpgLong lines existed in this legal exchange once again.  Straight back from the “Stay Behind this Sign to Respect Patient’s Privacy” sign back to the middle of the Depends shelf almost to the charcoal.  Impatiently they waited for their turn to get their drugs.  To make snide remarks.  To not see the face of the person who truly made them an addict in the first place.

And, no, it was not the doctor who prescribed the addictive material in the first place.  Doctors, in this economy, are simply another middle man.  They get to be the face you see and you trust them because you go them with all your problems.  Those doctors will take care of you.

Somebody, in another conversation, says to me, I am kind of disgusted by players who make millions taking a knee during the national anthem.

I replied simply, nobody is going to listen to a minimum wage earner.  Nobody.

I guess, in a way, so many of us are trying to become a middle man.

Hugh Hefner is no longer alive.  Suddenly we have a discussion debating what he provided as a service.  All these middle men providing their information to info junkies across the United States.  Information junkies trying to become dealers but they are really just trying to be middle men.

The NFL, NBA, and all other sports are to men what Playboy has been for women.  Sports leagues do nothing but use athletes for their benefit.  Objectification is not the word.  But they use them and dismiss them when their time has gone.  The legends we embrace forever.

And these sports leagues have created a junkie culture.  Addicts hanging on every move and every discussion on every player.  ESPN, sports radio, pregame shows, and fantasy leagues are the middle men of sports keeping the addicts hooked and tuned in.

I saw video of people burning their jerseys and tickets and posters and on and on.  The money has already been made, you patriot junkie.  Addicted to propaganda, these people are at the crossroads of Patriotism Road and Sports Blvd in the city of Addict lead by Mayor Misinformation.  They don’t know which road to follow.  Which direction to go.  So they follow their tour guide named Knee Jerk Reaction.

Knee Jerk Reaction is provided as a middle man to destroy all calm thought.

After every single game in which the local NFL team wins, the local redneck citizens blow off some fireworks.  I heard none last night.  Because these football players “disrespected the flag.”

Probably something their dealer of religion taught them.

Maybe something their dealer corporation said at work.

Maybe the middle man of Twitter and Facebook.

So many avenues to navigate, but in the end all junkies already know where they want to be.  They are simply finding the middle man who will give them the direction they desire.  Land them on the street corner they feel most comfortable.

No fireworks were lit last night.  None.  But I am confident this had more to do with the local NFL team under performing so far in the season.  When your dealer isn’t bringing the good stuff a junkie’s loyalty can be lost.

Because there are so many middle men out there just trying to get you hooked.

Today we are going to be sifting through the middle men exchanging your trust for or against guns and the control of them.  Sarah Huckabee Sanders repeated that today is the day for mourning and not the day for political debates.  Her boss didn’t believe that when he was a candidate and a junkie shot up a concert in Paris last year.

Labeling our junkies is vital.  Helps other junkies know what they are consuming.

So to all the junkies in this world navigating their way through a series of middle men trying to get you hooked, I’m offering one thing I know for sure.

Be very careful when combining medications.  Results may be undesirable.

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What is the Deal with February?


I woke up this morning in a way that I often do.

Thinking about shit that doesn’t really matter.  At all.

But that’s the way the brain is designed.  I use the word “designed” loosely.  As if there is a designer.

If I truly believed there were a designer of the brain, I’d probably wake up trying to determine why such an engineering flaw was pushed through.  I mean, there had to be a a series of approvals and designs and redesigns which landed us with the model we are working with today.

Had a car been developed with all the flaws the human mind carries, a better model would have been introduced by now.  One with more safety features and more economical and with tinted windows.

Engineers can be an odd breed.

When I was quite young, I would query the meaning behind the calendar.  The Gregorian Calendar.  Why?  A word too many children dispose of as they get older.  We could use a few more why questions and far less blind acceptance, but we get beaten down.

It is what it is- the cop out of our time.

I had real issues with the calendar when I was a child.

Why are some months 31 days and some 30 and what is the deal with February?

As I got older I applied some math.  There are 365 days and if we divide seven into that, we learn that there are 52 weeks in a year.  And one day.

I never could understand why we could not do anything with that day.  Should be able to hide that day somewhere.  Or make it up at a later time.

Using deck of cards math, we know that there should be 13 months of four weeks each.  There should be 13 weeks of four seasons.  Start the year of with the season of spades and end with hearts.

And then do something with that one day.  We’ll call it a sandbag.

I looked up the calendar before I started writing this.  I decided not to learn anything.  Some people have really put some effort into their wikipedia entries.

I applaud them for this.  But it’s a slow clap that ends quickly.  We all have our things.

Here’s what I got:  Pope Gregory was finding a way to accommodate when Easter falls and on and on.

I’m guessing 13 was an unlucky number.

I’m guessing they all were trying to find a way to keep the number to the highly overrated number 12.  The Bible is full of magic 12 and seven stories.

History loves those numbers.  Even if we have to fit those numbers into the story.

History is full of so many superstitions.

Yet another design flaw had there ever been engineers.

And that’s what I woke up thinking about.  Not just some cheesy story about how I was curious why the calendar was designed as it was or how the foot was poorly designed or other engineering defects.

I was considering how one of the human mind’s greatest flaws is how we try to fit our expectations into the world we experience.

This is also the engineering flaw of religion.  There was expectation that humans are the center of the universe.  There is an expectation that there is something more for humans that there is for the common animal.  There was expectation that good things will come thanks to karma.  There was an expectation that we need to justify the events which happen to us- the book subtitled everything happens for a reason.

Engineering without analysis.

Also the design flaw of most governments.

Watch as every single politician does a little dance to create an argument which supports ideas which fit their little world and avoid walking out of their comfort zone.  They support ideas which are selfish and actually bad for the rest of society.  We demonize everything which we don’t understand.

Stories of Newton and how he struggled with his own observations of the world because they didn’t fit well with his Catholic raising.

Why wouldn’t we simply start each month with the full moon?

Why wouldn’t we measure it out in easy to understand concepts?

We does it bother me?

Our people and their ability to be apathetic is insanely frustrating.

By the way, another giant engineering flaw had I ever believed in an engineer.

After lying there in bed for a while on my day off, I took in very little Sunday morning programming.  A show and a half.  All I can take.  Each show filled with politicians and panelists all doing the same thing.  Waltzing their words in time and rhythm with a Billboard Top Twenty feel.  They’ve convinced themselves they are right even if they cannot possibly be.  Playing the hits of the day and trying to cash in on all the latest talking point trends.

And, meanwhile, nobody cares.  And everybody cares.  So the whole world distracts itself.  And convinces itself it’s correct.

Another engineering flaw.  The brain is so easily influenced.  So easily infiltrated.  So easily affected and corrupted.  The human brain is vulnerable.  And we are all so stubbornly rigid.

Because we grew too old to ask why.

It’s currently June.  Somebody decided to make June a 30 day month.  Once upon a time we needed a 12 month year.  Based on this 24 hour cycle, we knew that there were 365 days most years.  The seven days of the week named after the seven things we could see in the sky.  Named after the gods we named the sky after.

 

Because we engineered it all into a neat little package.  We had to.

It’s about the expectation and how well we can fit our needs toward them.

The thing is that it works.  It’s a successful strategy which will continue as long as these poorly engineered vehicles of life house the poorly engineered motors trying to justify the navigation of life.

We displaced the gods.  Not the days of the week.

Be good.

It’s a music and nature day.

When Will We All Stop Being So Angry With Each Other?


When I get out in the world, I like to watch.  I watch people and how they interact with one another or how they look at each other.  I like to watch presentation.  We all present ourselves a certain way on purpose.

I used to enjoy sitting in the back of class so I could watch the people in the classroom.  Watch how the other students present themselves.  How they wanted the teacher to notice them.  How they made faces at another student’s words.  How some completely avoided all interaction altogether.

I was mistaken as shy often.  I was just observing.

So let’s sit back and take in the world in which we live.

Those in power like to tell us this is the most divisive that our human brains have ever allowed us to be.  While wholly untrue, they are not wrong.  The divisiveness begins with those in power, and that’s the magic.

They point the gun.  Society pulls the trigger.

Information is our friend.

I believe that when people look back at this world in which we reside, they’ll point out all the ridiculous amounts of propaganda and declare people too uninformed to generally make an educated decision about anything.

I’m not afraid of anger.

I’m a huge fan of that Rage Against the Machine line.

My anger is a gift.

Anger is necessary.  It’s what allows you to know something is wrong or that something must change.  But anger has to be toward the right people.  All that anger is like ammunition that gets shot out after the trigger is pulled.

Anger, if not aimed correctly, fans the flames of everything which is making this world so difficult to live in.  The crossfire can be devastating.

I’m not angry at people who voted for Trump.  I’m not even angry at the people who didn’t vote and allowed Trump to get elected.  Their skewed view of the world hasn’t been adjusted.  We all know people like that.

I’m not mad at people who vote anyway they vote.  They are honestly doing what they think is right.

I will, however, get angry if a person thinks it’s okay to be angry at me for simply believing what I believe.

There’s the breakdown.

You can be mad.  You can throw a fit.  Throw it the right direction.

While society is busy fighting against each other, those in power are finding more ways to do whatever they wanted in the first place.

This is a world of distraction and fighting in a world where reason has lost all place.  And instead of insisting on reason, we push the strange agenda of dividing even further.

Our anger should be toward a lack of education and compassion in this world.  Our anger should be toward the fact that the country which is supposed to be the leader of the free world carries narrow minded views without batting an eye.

Our anger should be at those who are in power using their power to get more power.

Our anger should not be directed at society.

All these little bullets shooting across the world are only making everybody fire back.  It’s counterproductive.

It’s an interesting little world in which we live.

But it’s only interesting if you’re allowed to watch from the back row as if it’s theater.  I’m afraid I’m not back there taking all this in.

Haters


There was a show I recorded about a year ago on ESPN called Haters: The Anatomy of a Rivalry.  The show focused on baseball rivalries and was very well produced.

In it, Dodger fans insulted the appearance of Giants fans and Red Sox fans questioned the intelligence of Yankees fans and on and on.  I saw it as much more than that though.

I viewed this as a decent look into the mentality of human beings.

We need a villain.  Always.  You want to activate people, get them to hate something or somebody or an idea or something so abstract as a baseball team.

Over 140 years of Major League Baseball and we are focused on a team of somebody else’s choosing.  We are focused on so much hate.  The Dodgers and Giants were once in other cities.  They once played when only white people could play.  Most of the players are not even representatives of the cities in which they play.  Today especially.  The teams moved and ensured the other would move as well in order to keep up the rivalry which got fans to engage with the game.

All sports try extremely hard to create a rivalry which will stimulate their fans and create excitement.

And revenue.

The local NFL team’s fans are more interested in railing on their rival and their rival’s fans instead of showing genuine support.

So here we are.  Moving on from sports, which serves as a fine distraction which I welcome.  Life is too hard to live without distraction.  Tell me I’m wrong.  It’s all about balance.

This post, however, is about villains.  It’s about hating.  It’s about having an enemy.

I see it more and more and it needs to be discussed.

People tend to vote against something instead of for.  People tend to argue against.  People tend to seek validation in rallying against.

This has been shown repeatedly over the years as we split off into rival groups and exasperated with social media.  See the term “libtard” and tell me what that was supposed to mean and if it’s a valuable argument ever.

Hillary Clinton lost because she ran a campaign which failed to show any clear vision.  Instead she ran against her opponent by dismissing them.  Sanders had “pie in the sky” ideas.  Later, she argued that a vote for her was a vote against Trump.  She never truly laid a clear foundation of ideas.

Remember those Deplorables and Basement Dwellers?

Meanwhile, Trump chose to run a campaign which at least had vision, but was still a campaign against.  Make America Great Again is a complete attack on those who were or had been in charge.  It was villainizing (I have a red line under that word, but I’m leaving it) the current system.  Completely running against Obama by declaring he made America anything but great, it was a campaign driven on fears and hatred.

Today they argued the travel ban.  Trump repeated his disdain for Muslims during the campaign trail.  He has made them the enemy and people eat it up.

I don’t care for the religion myself.  I don’t care for Christianity either.  I don’t hate the people.  I hate the actions.  Religion can be seen as a problem, but the solution is not intolerance.

We love to compartmentalize.  We love to create enemies out of people who are really seeking the same freedom of life as any of us.  We love to hate.

Trump wears the idea he has “haters” as a badge of honor.

Watch the discourse from slightly left of center.  There is a battle to demonize both the extreme left and the right.  This isn’t healthy.  But they are creating rivalries on two fronts.  They are creating an entire universe in which their philosophy is being attacked from every angle.

As if they are Batman, Trump is The Joker, and progressives are The Riddler.

I believe that people want a superhero, but their heroes cannot be “super” without making somebody else out as a super villain.

The more super the enemy, the more super the hero

In reality, the world is full of mediocre bad guys and the discourse is run by those people almost entirely.

Here’s what needs to happen.

People need to start determining where their needs overlap.  Tolerance needs to be exercised.

We have decided that politics is similar to sports.  We have taken the bait and determined that regular everyday humans are the enemy.  We have decided to fight this battle on a weird level and nobody is fighting for the needs of the common everyday human being who is struggling to live and pay bills and take a vacation and hold a job.  Good luck retiring.

Our enemy should be common.  Our enemy should be that which keeps us from a humane quality of life.

We need to take an honest look at ourselves.

The Hatfields and the McCoys never learned their lesson.

If I go back to the show I lead this post with, it ended with a Red Sox fan watching a game in person with a Yankees fan.  A very humanizing thing to do.

We are likely to never completely agree on much, but we need to at least start focusing our intent better.

We’ve created villains and haters where they don’t really exist and that’s just simply bad energy for everything.

March of the Orange King


Quick note- I started this a few days ago.  I felt I should finish it.

It seems that being President of these here United States for 100 days is a big deal.  It has to be.  The media has been counting down to 100 days for 101 days now.

I would agree that it would be a big deal if it were similar to a 90 day probationary period.  I mean, I just signed an offer letter for a job which made it very clear that my first 90 days were exactly that.  If I don’t do a good job, they’ll kick me to the curb.

Of course the very next paragraph outlined that my employment is “at will” and I can be excused from the position at any point for no reason.

Yes, let’s discuss the 100 days if we get to take it back.  Go get a new fish.  Probationary period is over, Mr. President, and you’re fired.  See, we didn’t hire you to simply sign executive orders and play golf.

But that’s not how it operates.

And as the television is humming along yesterday, they focus on the latest of these seemingly weekly stream of marches that takes place.  This week was climate change.

There’s been a woman’s march, a science march, an LGBTQ march, and many others.

Song in my head as I write this… March of the Black Queen by Queen.

It is exciting to see people get so active and take a vested interest in the well being of our world.  It would feel like democracy in action if half the country didn’t stay home last November.

There have been so many marches covering every topic and group and whatever else they could drum up.  And I wonder why.  What are they going to accomplish?

The reporter talked to a protester yesterday while the television served as background noise.  She asked what he hopes to accomplish with this protest.

He told the reporter that he hoped to get the President to take note that people care about climate change and he will change his direction on this issue.

Really kind of silly.

Really.

Trump does not care what people think.  He will do what he wants.

I mean, it’s been a maddeningly head spinning week.  This guy desperate for the approval of anybody first said he thought that the 100 day mark was made up and then started forcing ideas and executive orders so that he could tell the media they are wrong.

Look how productive we’ve been.  I’ve signed 30 laws.

The only march which seems to matter is not the one that the people put together, but rather the march to undo progress.

Executive order to allow the protected lands from Monuments be available for drilling if the state wishes.  Utah sleaze Mike Lee and Orin Hatch were on hand for this signing.  They will start the unbeutification of Bear’s Ears.

Executive order to allow off shore drilling.

Executive order to allow states to defund Planned Parenthood.

A tax plan that gives Donald Trump and his family a huge tax break at the corporate level and allows for money to come back into the country at a one time low cost.

A health plan which will take away the preexisting condition protections if the states decide.

And the first president to speak to the NRA directly since Ronald Reagan.

Please, I ask you to take a stab at who some of Trump’s largest financial contributors were.

Most notably, I want you to look at the tax plan.  Because trickle down does not work.  If it did, we’d be reaping the benefits of 35 years of trickle down growth and expansion.  But we are not.  Businesses are.  The most wealthy in our country are getting wealthier because trickle down does not convince people to spend.  They put it in their pocket.

And Trump is wealthy.

He wants his kids to be wealthier.

You know what works?  Paying people a living wage so they can afford to go out and buy shit at a pace which will require businesses to hire people and grow.  A different post a different time.

But this week we may see the worst of all executive orders.  Trump has invited many faith leaders to the White House for the signing of a Religious Freedom Executive Order.

Anytime somebody puts the words religious and freedom together, they are generally pitching the exact opposite.

This is to take place on May 4th.  Also the National Day of Prayer.  Also Star Wars day.  I’m not interested in any of those.

This executive order is supposed to make it so that private corporations can discriminate against people if they do not think their lifestyle is in line with the corporation’s religious affiliation.  LGBT and Q will be frowned upon.  Premarital sex.  Do not invite any of your friends to follow you on Facebook or Instagram.  They may rat you out.

I have a disease.  I do not back down from conversations.  I better start.  Religious freedom could cover way more than I think.

I also believe that anybody who pitches religious freedom forgets that I have the right to freedom from religion.

So what do I see today?

TakeiTweet

That’s the answer?

Another march?

Trump does not care.  One bit.  He has little interest in you.  He has no interest in what people want.  This executive order, if he does sign it, will be a bone to Mike Pence.

Tolerance is not a strength of this administration.

And neither is listening to the population.

So I expect many more marches to take place.  In fact, I’ve already seen people discuss future events.  To be clear, I’m not suggesting people don’t try to get their voice heard.  Furthest thing from my mind.

But this president does not care.

He is doing only what he wants.

So call your representatives.  Write them.  Email them.  Take that stand.

Contact the ACLU.

I’m pretty sure a federal judge will strike down any religious freedom executive order and it won’t take long.  It’s a clear violation of everything this nation is supposed to stand for.

But be very clear that Trump doesn’t care what anybody outside of his immediate circle thinks.

Keep marching.  At least you’re getting out of the house.

Variety and Life


I sit down to write this while eating some shrimp tacos.

Shrimp tacos, you see, are a nice variation on the original taco.  Also includes shrimp.  I really like shrimp.  But what is the right way to make a shrimp taco?  I really don’t know.  I just don’t.

I believe that cheese is not right with seafood.

I like to make my own salsa, because that’s what makes  a good shrimp taco.  Good salsa would make a regular taco too.

Let’s face it, a good salsa would make any taco.  Regardless of the protein.

I took some cherry tomatoes and cooked them on a low heat with olive oil and garlic.  I seasoned to taste.  Once the tomatoes started popping, I put them in the blender with a various amount of jalapenos, onions, seasoning, and whatever else I want.

Cooked shrimp covered in my salsa and topped with lettuce for crunch.  Fold in a tortilla.  It was a good dinner.  As I’ve finished them at this point.

I didn’t write to tell you about my version of shrimp tacos.

Somebody once said that variety is the spice of life.

Because you may like your shrimp tacos prepared differently.  Or more mild.  Or with cheese.

There is very little variety where I work.  Most of the employees are part of, or friends of, a closely knit family that runs the operation.  I don’t have a problem with this outside of the fact that some of these family members are not good workers.

I’ve also learned that the family which exists is there because the office manager’s father is a preacher.

They shouldn’t hold this against me.

Discussion today.

Member of the family: I don’t know if I like Trump, but I don’t think there should be any Muslims in this country.

Me:  What’s the point of having the First Amendment?

Member:  Freedom of Speech?

Me:  And freedom of and from religion.  Freedom of the press.

Member:  But the Muslims want to kill Christians.

Me:  And white people seem to be killing brown people at a pretty good rate right now.

Conversation goes round and round.  I discuss socio-economic status.  I talk about desperate people.  I talk about how we have one life and some will do anything to get themselves out of a difficult world.  How we have big brains which will convince us of anything.

His response was consistent.  He didn’t understand Muslims.  Period.

He doesn’t have to.  May as well be putting cheese on seafood.

And then, somehow, he brought up homosexual people.  He asked why the government gets to decide what’s right?

Me:  Just because it’s okay to be homosexual does not mean you have to be.  It shouldn’t bother you.  As long as you are not affected, it should not matter.

Him:  What if it does affect me?

Me:  Are you being raped?

Him:  No, but what if family doesn’t agree?

Me:  That’s ridiculous.  There are many things that family may not agree with.  Get over it.

Him:  Next thing you know, government will be saying bestiality will be okay.

Me:  No.  Animals are affected.

Him:  What?  The dog?

Me:  Yeah.  Dogs cannot consent.  Bad argument.  Learn to be accepting that not everybody is the same.  Learn that people actually believe in something other than you.  Learn that people should be treated fairly and taken care of.  Not dismissed.

He groaned, so I continued.

Learn to think that we are all human.  That we all deserve a fair shake.  There are killers of all religions.  The key is to lift those who feel repressed to a better position and I bet they don’t want to go to desperate measures anymore.

Another groan.

So I continued.

I realize that none of this is what you believe in, so what makes you think you’re right?  Learn to accept a little and I bet that things may be a little better.

Because there’s more than one way to make a taco.

And there’s more than one way to make a shrimp taco.

I would be interested in trying many of them, but not all.  I have my feelings about certain things.

I am okay, though, if you prefer your shrimp tacos prepared differently.  Not my problem.  I’ll do what I do and you do what you do.

Why can’t the political and religious experience be like shrimp tacos?

Let’s be serious about this.

There’s more than one way to prepare your ideas and more than one ideology from where you come.  Doesn’t mean any other person is wrong.

As long as nobody gets hurt.

Don’t put rat poison in my tacos.  That’s a rule.