July Letters to Jim: Independence and other Ideas

July has arrived and there is revolution in the air, only this time it seems to be in Russia. Grab your flag, pour yourself a nice cold one, and sit back and read what is on the minds of some of our greatest Americans.

Dear Jim,
What is in store for Vladimir Putin now that he has had to put down a rebellion by the commander of the Wagner Group? Is his time in power short or does he clamp down on any potential Kremlin threats who might want to take over as Russia’s leader? Also, why is it that our own intelligence seems caught off guard by all of this? Should this worry us?
Russian Watcher

Dear RW,

Let’s start where you left off and work backward. Anything that concerns who holds power in Russia should concern us if for nothing other than they hold more nuclear weapons than any nation on the planet. An uprising in Russia could place the security of those weapons in the hands of people willing to sell them on the open market. Imagine a terrorist group getting their hands on a few.

When it comes to Russia, I am not sure exactly just how much our intelligence community knows what is unfolding until it happens. Even if they did know, it is usually not in their interest to inform the public. There are reasons what they do are top secret even if guys named Donald Trump think otherwise. The only thing that matters is they are able to keep our president informed on what is unfolding and that is challenging enough given how secretive governments like Russia’s or China’s operate.

As for Putin, this is yet another embarrassment as a result of his horrific miscalculation over how easily his military would defeat Ukraine. Just the fact he has had to rely so heavily on the Wagner Group has shown us the Russian military is not all that impressive. Consequently, I would expect to see a few heads roll in Moscow, even if they are just for show. Putin can’t sit idly by and not make others pay. What remains to be seen is what is unfolding behind the Kremlin scenes and whether Oligarchs and high ranking officials are looking to oust Putin for what has turned into one gigantic cluster f%#&.

Keep in mind, while we may not know all the inner workings of the Kremlin, our government is far more familiar with Putin than we are any possible replacement. Remember the old saying of keeping your enemies close. If Putin is ousted, this will pose a huge challenge for our intelligence, one they may not be up to handle.

Finally, let’s not forget about China. They have as much interest in what unfolds in Russia as we do. We currently have poor relations with China and if all hell breaks loose in Russia, the world is better off if we are able to work with and not against China in restoring calm.

Dear Jim,
Do young people get a bad rap for their work habits or has your generation just morphed into a bunch of cranky old men and women?
Tired of the Label

Dear Tired,

We love labels. It’s why we have so many of them. You see, labels simplify our thought process which is something we have learned to minimize as much as possible. Labels help make for a black and white world, one that has no gray areas. It results in hypocrisy, especially when a group labels itself Pro Life while also supporting something like the death penalty.

Are young people lazy? Yes and no. Basically, they are young and trying to figure out this thing called work that they have tried to avoid for as long as possible. Every generation does this, but as technology advances, it becomes easier to put off for a longer period of time.

It’s natural for a younger person with much greater knowledge of the technological world to want to rely on it to make money as easily as possible. It beats bagging groceries, waiting on tables, or standing behind a counter all day wearing a fake smile and dealing with customers. In my day, you might start out bagging groceries and in time work your way up to managing a supermarket and making a good living. Today, it is a path to nowhere, so why do it if you can find an easier way?

What I do know is in my day, if you bagged groceries, you didn’t stand around waiting to be told to bag some while you picked your nose. The other day, I literally had to let my cash register clerk know that I watched her bag boy pick his nose FOUR times before he bagged the groceries of the lady in front of me. Fortunately, she sent him to the next register before it was time for him to bag mine.

If I have a gripe with younger people, it is that they lack the social awareness that comes from growing up and playing with others, instead of being glued to an electronic device. Not knowing how to shake hands, speaking in clear sentences, and feeling you have been violated because someone has criticized the work you do is what drives me and my generation nuts. However, I also know there is likely to come a day where adults communicate with emojis, pick their noses in grocery stores, and all rely on a therapy dog to get through life. Fortunately, I will be long gone and won’t care.

Dear Leftist Loser,
Your president has lost what little is left of his mind. What is he thinking labeling groups of housewives as terrorist groups? This is beyond nuts and why we, the same folks who support Trump, need to take back this country and make it right again.

Dear Maga Man,

Have you considered adding a few letters to your label and calling yourselves CroMAGAMan? After all, it is clear you lack the same brain capacity (as the average person) to comprehend what is real and what is false.

I assume you are referring to the labeling of the Moms for Liberty and Parents Defending Education groups as Hate Groups by the Southern Poverty Law Center. I assume you do not agree with the SPLC placing them in the same category as the KKK or Proud Boyz. I also assume you are offended that such white “Christian” women could be viewed as dangerous even though you MAGAts are the first to do the same with nice women of color who are Muslim. I can also assume you do not grasp that our President and the Southern Poverty Law Center are not one and the same.

Looks can be very deceiving. Some men can wear a red hat with the letters M A G and A on them and wave a flag while yelling obscenities at someone like our president or Kamala Harris, our VP, and even congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, while they claim to be God loving Americans.

If you can put a dress on a pig and still have a pig, then it only makes sense you can put one on a hate monger and still have a terrorist.

Dear Jim,
With the implosion of the Titan, you said it will likely inspire other bored billionaires to learn from it and take deep sea exploration further. Do you really believe this or do you generally dislike all billionaires so much that you were trying to make them all look bad during a time of tragedy?
Not A Billionaire

Dear Not,

Not all billionaires are bad. I have spoken highly of people like Bill Gates who would rather use his wealth to leave behind a better planet and not worry whether he or his loved ones profit financially. Unfortunately, it seems like for every Bill Gates there are several Elon Musks who seek any path toward greater wealth. This is his driving force behind space exploration, that we do not need nearly as much as we can use to improve the health of our planet.

It is very hard to feel sorry for the loss of life on the Titan when it was hauling customers who paid $250K to check out the Titanic  It was nothing more than a tour that allowed the passengers a chance to brag about what they did and nothing more. With each successful dive, there became a much greater chance of expanding this new age touring, just as it is with each rocket Musk sends into space.

Maybe it is just my opinion, but it seems to me America’s wealthiest are overly fixated on wanting more wealth. Too many wait until they are very old before they begin their philanthropic work and so, it comes off as if they are saying, “Well, I have had all the fun I care to have so now I will think of what I can do for others.”  Bill Gates did not wait and because he didn’t, there will be millions, maybe even billions, of people around the planet who will enjoy a much better life because of him.

If every billionaire did as much for others as Bill Gates has done, our planet would not be in the state of crisis it is in. In that sense, they are no different than the wealthiest governments who, in my opinion, come off as greedy as Elon Musk, and fail to accomplish more good than possible.

Dear Jim,
Do you think the Supreme Court will end up deciding the 2024 election? If they do, isn’t it a sure thing for Trump, considering how he stacked the court with conservatives?
Concerned About Next Year

Dear Concerned,

If you look at some recent decisions of the conservative court when deciding cases on election matters next year, so far, they have not shown an automatic 6-3 bias against Biden and the Democrats. This bodes well for those worried about Trump or any other GOP candidate. This court may be more concerned on social issues like abortion and less inclined to allow conservatives to make their path to the White House easier and unfairly advantageous.

I also still believe those sitting on the fence about next year are going to move more toward Biden than Trump or others on the right. Remember, each of these candidates will have to convince voters their economic plan will do more for those in the greatest need like Biden’s does. The same is true when it comes to our infrastructure, foreign affairs, and military.

Here is what I see. There is nothing the right can do that will encourage voters on the left to follow them. There is nothing the left can do to bring the right into Biden’s camp. So, like most elections, it will be decided by the undecided and when polling is conducted on social issues, they support Biden and the left far more than they do the right.

Barring a huge economic catastrophe, I do not see Biden losing next year; however, my eyesight has not improved with age so don’t quote me on this.

Dear Jim,
Should politicians be required to pass a test that shows their mental fitness to remain in office? If so, at what age should such a test be required?
Congress is Crazy

Dear CIC,

The idea of this was first brought up by members of the right over concerns of California Senator Diane Feinstein’s mental fitness for office. While I agree, it is not in the best interest of any state or political party to be run by people whose age keeps them from performing their basic duties. However, to set an age where testing begins is never going to fly in the courts. It’s nothing more than age discrimination.

However, requiring the test from day one of filing papers to run for office is another matter. Requiring congressional clowns like Marjorie Taylor Greene to take such a test when she says her television spies on her is acceptable. Testing the mental fitness of election deniers is not a bad idea when they refuse to accept the results. Testing people who do not believe in science while they push untested ideas on the public might be enough to test their mental fitness. Maybe even test the mental fitness of anyone who claims the January 6th insurrection never happened. And finally, let’s not forget those who claim we never landed on the moon.

A person’s age should never be the cause for testing the mental fitness of our elected leaders. However, their words and actions are.

Enjoy your 4th of July but remember, vets with PTSD and many pets suffer greatly from fireworks so enjoy a nice show put on for the public and leave it at that.