SAD and the News

Man sitting on a floor tiles, sad, depressed and lonely

Once regarded skeptically by the experts, seasonal affective disorder, SAD for short, is now well established. Epidemiological studies estimate that its prevalence in the adult population ranges from 1.4 percent (Florida) to 9.7 percent (New Hampshire).

Home here in Northern Indiana, specifically St. Joseph County… is home to incredibly cloudy weather!

Further, the County Seat… South Bend, Indiana, has twice been voted the 5th most unhappy city in the United States!  This is according to credible Harvard University studies that specialize in the recognition and treatment of Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).

Now, old sayings come into play ” you can’t do anything about the weather”… but we can, and must, do our best to stem the gushing flow of negative news that flows like a lava stream from all media sources!

It’s nearly impossible to turn on the TV, open up a web browser, or scroll through Twitter without being assaulted with notifications of a new world disaster (or two, or three…).

Thanks to the 24-hour news cycle, alerts of shootings, plane crashes, ISIS beheadings, crime, war and human rights violations are constant — and this incessant news of violence and destruction may be messing with our heads!!!

I’m going to explore the relativity of PTSD in Civilian Life later on this week…. however now,  exposure to graphic violence can cause a process of either sensitization, in which the individuals becomes more sensitive to emotional distress upon viewing the images, or desensitization…. the same symptoms found in Veterans who return from deployment from overseas duty.

Meanwhile, a word to journalists….A more positive form of journalism will not only benefit our well-being; it will engage us in society, and it will help catalyze potential solutions to the problems that we face.

Johnson Long

HuffPost

Flawed Political Process

New Regulations Take Effect newspaper headline informing you of rules and laws impacting your life, business or career

The yard signs are coming out along with the crocus and iris here in Northern Indiana!  It’s a beautiful sight to some… to others…not so much.  Congress, for the most part, is still deadlocked in bitter and useless debate.

Deadlock that could have been easily avoided if we chose the path of other countries.  I’m referring to countries where political change means the removal of the opposition party and removal of all its appointees as a result of the election.

With a little more than a month to go before the Primary for Mid-Term elections,  both political parties have little to show for the first year and a quarter of President Trump’s administration.

Let me present a small example of exactly “why” the option of political housecleaning is both viable and necessary. To wit: The Consumer Products Safety Commission …still run by Democrats!

The CPSC seems benign,  but this regulator has jurisdiction over more than 15,000 products, from baby cribs to chain saws, and Obama’s appointees still run the place!   If Senators don’t confirm Trump nominees, Buerkle and  Baiocco,  Obama’s picks will continue their reign well into 2019!

The CPSC is a shining example of federal over reach and corruption. The agency has also gone after businesses when a non-defective product causes an injury due to consumer misuse or negligence!  …. any incident from coffee being served to hot, to refrigerator magnets that could be swallowed!

The Democratic commissioners have set a precedent that a business is at risk if it can’t guarantee the unconditional safety of its wares!  This over reach has stymied the development of niche markets where small to medium size manufacturing companies could prosper!

With the threat of economic uncertainty on the rise, it’s time to clean house and get this ball rolling!

Johnson Long

 

Good Friday and Death

The Triumph, Passion, Crucifixion and Resurrection. Iconic Christian symbols representing events from Palm Sunday to Easter rest upon a rustic table along with a 19th century antique bible - palm branch, crown of thorns, cross, and white lily.

Today, Christians all over the world take part in the somber rituals that mark the day when Jesus’ own people put his mortal body to death.

I stayed away from all forms of radio,television and newspaper this day, and reflected on what it could be like to be put to death by your own people, your own countrymen.

Most of us who served in the military, or were first responders of any and all types, have reflected on the possibility of dying at the hand of another human being.  Another human being most likely to be a Citizen, and very likely to be a Citizen of America…..because, that’s where we live….America.

I reflected on the faces of the “marchers” and “protesters” so angry and determined, so purposeful in their demonstrations.  These “demonstrators” appear to have a great deal of anger and hatred in their eyes and faces!

So much anger and hatred for those of us who support the 2nd Amendment of the Constitution…that they would actually want to kill us in order to fulfill their goal…. the abolition  of  the Second Amendment!!!

These days, one sees a lot of bracelets, lanyards, bumper stickers and signs reading ” What would Jesus do?”  Well, I don’t know, that’s for sure… but here is what I do know…and here is how I will confront the marchers and the haters when they come for me.

Molon Labe, and may God have mercy on your souls.

Johnson Long

 

The Ruckus about the Census

Census word cloud concept

Legal and political battles have begun over whether the 2020 census should ask respondents if they are a US citizen, with Democratic lawmakers and state officials lining up to block the plan and the Trump administration strongly defending it. Nothing new here… resist, resist, resist…..

The citizenship question is already on the Census Bureau’s annual American Community Survey.   

But, the survey doesn’t reach as wide a segment of the population as the census does. 

 It does ask whether a person is a citizen by birth or by naturalization or isn’t a citizen.

It doesn’t ask about the legality of an immigrant’s presence, not that they would answer it anyway…..  that criminal thingy, remember?

House and Senate Democrats have introduced legislation to prevent a citizenship question from being added to the census. 

Regardless of the ultimate legal outcome, a court challenge could put the question in legal limbo long enough to make adding it practically impossible given the lead time needed to print materials and program census software.

Other than serving themselves and their masters, I have to ask ” when will the Democrats actually be FOR something?”

Johnson Long

Lies and more lies.

Portrait of crying young woman - concept photo

Let’s start this off with the current big lie…… here we go!

“This much is clear: The United States is awash in gun violence.”

“The science is in: More guns means more death, period. When it comes to daily gun homicides per capita, no other Western country can hold a candle to the U.S., according to an analysis by the New York Times.

Americans are 25 times more likely to be killed by a gun compared with other high-income nations, and eight times more likely to commit suicide with a gun, according to the American Journal of Medicine. Worldwide, 90 percent of all women, 91 percent of children under 14, and 92 percent of young people between the ages of 15 and 24 killed with guns died in the U.S.

All told, Americans represent 82 percent of gun deaths among advanced nations, according to the World Health Organization.”

 

no guns, weapons sign.

Good God, what horseshit!  Almost every word ranges from inaccurate to completely untrue!!! And this is what is preached ( actually spoon fed) to the kids/pre teens/teenagers from K thru 12!  Also picked up by the media, and regurgitated constantly on the 24 hour news cycle.

This is the truth…there are over 330 million people in the USA and just about one gun for every person. 

You can waste your time if you choose to … simply by googling each statement in this pile of dung to prove it wrong… or not.

People have been killing each other since Cain and Able, and will keep on killing each other until every human being is extinct from planet Earth…and that’s the way it is!!

Thankfully, God has provided each and every human being on the planet with many wonderful gifts!  Just take two of them, put them to use, and don’t step in this steaming pile of media lies and propaganda!  Which two are they, you ask?

Common sense is one, and the second gift is the fifth Commandment…”thou shalt not kill”.

Johnson Long

 

 

 

 

What do you say?

Large cast Iron bell

Well, Friends, this post is going to be a little different …because you readers are going to be part of it.

One of my dearest friends was recently diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, and was told there wasn’t much hope…actually about 2% even with chemo and radiation.  Not much to look forward to.

She and I have been the best and closest of friends… we celebrated a whole bunch of life together, and we buried friends and family together.  Now, we have to face the coldest, hardest,  fact of life…. death.. together as well.

It’s always difficult to offer the appropriate condolences to family, friends, loved ones, acquaintances……but what do you say to your dearest friend when she still has time left….we just don’t know how much?  It beats the hell out of me.  I’ll think it thru on the way to her house this Wednesday…and probably won’t come up with a plan.  So, I’ll turn to my two old friends, drugs and alcohol…say a prayer to St. Joseph (the patron saint of a happy death)  and give it my best shot.

That being said, this totally sucks…and I’m very, very sad.  We stand and cry at funerals and memorial services…not so much for the one who has passed, but for ourselves.  Ourselves as well as our loved ones when we face that final chapter in our lives.  So, I’ll close with this, from John Donne:  If a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as if a manor of thy friend’s or of thine own were: any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind, and therefore never send to know for whom the bells tolls; it tolls for thee.”

Johnson Long

 

 

 

Here comes Bolton!

John R Bolton at CPAC 2017 by Michael Vadon

I have been a fan of John Bolton for a very long time.  He has always shown guts, spirit and commitment to conservative ideals… and will not back down!

As an American nationalist who believes we should only enter into treaties and agreements when they are to our advantage and who is 100% opposed to the United States relinquishing any of its freedom of action for the sake of joining international organizations, I think the combination of Bolton and Pompeo is going to end up being the worst nightmare of Iran, Russia, Syria, and the Palestinian Authority.

Bolton is more than an ideologue, thought I think we have too damned few of them in senior positions, he understands the interagency process and he’s more than willing to fight to win. With Bolton at NSC I’m more comfortable with the North Korea meeting than I was with McMaster because I know Bolton will prep Trump for the probability that he will need to walk away. Bolton will kill the Iran nuclear deal. Dead. Iran is going to find an implacable foe to its imperialism.

The environment at the NSC is going to change. Bolton is a well know screamer who isn’t going to shy away from letting people know he’s not happy. So get ready for some early turmoil there as a lot of McMaster hires are forced out.

Johnson Long

B.S. ( does not stand for Bachelor of Science)

Businessman on blurred background discovering fake news information 3D rendering

The skill of spotting false information—rubbish, nonsense and, yes, fake news—is so important these days that scientists have begun serious research on it. They’re attempting to quantify when and why people spread it, who is susceptible to it, and how people can confront it.

Bullshit is a form of persuasion that aims to impress the listener while employing a blatant disregard for the truth…largely displayed in the entire presidential election held in 2016!  Of course this isn’t new. But false information moves faster and farther these days, thanks to social media and let’s not forget the “drive by” media…. the extension of the Democrat Party!

 

HOW CAN YOU SPOT B.S.?

Check the source. Is this person an expert or in a position to know the information? Why is he or she telling me? What does the person have to gain? “Sometimes it’s just a coolness factor,” says Jevin West, a professor of information science at the University of Washington, who teaches a class in how to spot B.S. in data.

If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Remember that we all suffer from confirmation bias—we’re more likely to believe something that confirms what we already think or want. “It’s hardest to spot B.S. we agree with,” says Gordon Pennycook, a postgraduate fellow at Yale who studies B.S. “Question it if it supports your own beliefs.”

Ask questions. Research shows people are more likely to B.S. when they feel they can get away with it. “Ask them simply: ‘Why do you think that? How do you know that is true?’” says John Petrocelli, a social psychologist and associate professor of psychology at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, N.C., who studies B.S. “This will get them thinking critically.”

Don’t trust your gut. People who pause and think about whether information is true are better able to detect false information, research shows. “Rely on your prior knowledge,” says Lisa Fazio, an assistant professor of psychology and human development at Vanderbilt University.

Ask for evidence. This is different than an explanation, which people can continue to spin. Facts don’t lie—but check them to make sure they are real.

Pay attention to people who discount evidence. “I don’t care what the experts say” is a red flag that the person is using B.S.

Johnson Long signing off!  Peace!

Federal Government picks and chooses winners in energy production

Giving a bribe, hands of businessmen or politician

How does this happen? well, According to the Energy Information Administration (EIA) and the University of Texas, from 2010 through 2013, federal renewable energy subsidies increased by 54%, from $8.6 billion to $13.2 billion, despite the fact that total federal energy subsidies declined by 23%, from $38 billion to $29 billion.

On a total dollar basis, wind has received the greatest amount of federal subsidies. Solar is second. Wind and solar together get more than all other energy sources combined.

However, based on production (subsidies per kWh of electricity produced), solar energy, has gotten over ten times the subsidies of all other forms of energy sources combined, including wind.

Lets get back to how this happened…. WIND AND SOLAR LOBBYISTS WITH DEEP POCKETS! That’s how! AND THE CROOKED CONGRESSMEN AND SENATORS WHO GET RICH OFF OUR ELECTRIC BILLS!!

This stupid, costly and corrupt ‘war on coal” the POS past president waged has increased our electrical energy cost by 40% per month …while reducing the dependability of our electrical grid!

And you know who makes the ugly wind turbines and solar panels? Well, the Fed released its latest ranking that put Trina Solar as the top shipper, followed by Yingli Green Energy. Both companies are based in China, which has dominated the solar equipment manufacturing business for many years now…. and guess who ships almost 15% of all wind turbines in the US? Yep…CHINA!

Now that we have “followed the money” … can you see why the “swamp” hates President Trump’s efforts to strike a favorable balance of trade with China? Do you now understand why the drive by manufactures so much negativity regarding a “trade war” with China?

Call your Congressmen and Senators….sadly, it’s the only voice we have!

Johnson Long

The Feast day of Saint Joseph the Worker

st joseph the worker

Today.the feast day of Saint Joseph the Worker!

Patron St. of Carpenters!  Saint Joseph worked in a carpenter’s shop. Whether he owned the carpenter’s shop, or was an employee of the owner, is not clear. God chose Saint Joseph for the education of His Son (and let us remember that Jesus was essentially home schooled) because He wanted the best educator for Jesus. But God always goes beyond the minimal in His provisions, and that is why He chose Saint Joseph for his special role as educator, guide and mentor to the boy Jesus.

One of the things that Saint Joseph taught by word and example was the rule of working for one’s living, something that the early Christians too ….were keen on! So, here’s to you, Blessed Saint Joseph… my Patron Saint! Bless and lead all my fellow Carpenters and all members retired and still working in the trade. United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America!!!