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On The Left

I want my grenade launcher, too

If you watched TV on Saturday, March 24, you surely saw at least some of the vast marches of the student movement to rid our schools, our land, of unnecessary military firepower in the hands of the general populace. We don’t need military firepower under the Second Amendment. 

The young adults from Florida and their compatriots from around the country put on a fabulous show, not for entertainment, but to rally all Americans to the fact that we have the dubious distinction of having more firepower per person than any other country in the world.

Our planet is in jeopardy; we need to act now

The cold polar winter air is pushing down deep into the south while the warm Atlantic air has been darting well north of the Arctic, a condition that has endured well into March now. Where is the “Comes in as a Lion and departs as a Lamb?” March we want? It is the warm south breeze coming up our coast and the Gulf Stream which are penetrating the Polar Vortex and are the most visible facts of global warming. One is water and the other is air, but the effect of both are cumulative.

Revisiting the use of the Second Amendment

When our Founding Fathers amended the Constitution to include a right to bear arms, arms were very different. I will point out that it was an amendment and not in the original Constitution. The Founding Fathers had made provisions for means by which the Constitution could be altered as needed over time. This provision has served us well enough in the past, but perhaps, like Prohibition, it is time to reconsider the Second Amendment.

Net neutrality: There are very good reasons to retain it

With all the news about sexual abuse, weather disasters and government impropriety, the very important issue of internet neutrality has escaped broad public scrutiny. This is the week, if not the day, when your access to the internet may become controlled by government and/or business imposed rules that you will never be able to change. Some of the biggest players in the internet space are trying to achieve a seemingly minor but actually profound change in how the internet delivers information to you. The internet is about to be monetized.

Talking about taxation

The good, the bad and ...

The GOP tax plan is a classic example of good ideas mixed with bad ideas and salted with outright greed. But like most human initiatives, it has good intention, no matter how deranged. Perfection is not a part of the human condition. Trump is not working to hurt America. He just doesn’t know how to fix it. To be fair, many of his predecessors didn’t either. At least he has not started a 17-year war.

The buck stops elsewhere

When I was a child, my grandparents took me to a famous old resort. Among many pleasures, there was the equivalent of a bubblegum dispenser where, for a nickel, one could buy a handful of fish food to feed the teeming trout in the sparkling cold lake. The fish would roil and snatch each pellet of food even before it hit the water. There were more fish than there was water for them to swim in. 

So it was on a recent Friday when Trump addressed the ‘values summit’ in Washington.

Disasters

Disasters come in many flavors, and we have seen quite the box of chocolates of late. There have been natural disasters such as earthquakes in Mexico and mudslides in China and monster hurricanes, all of which are natural and will happen. We have seen a human-inflicted disaster in Las Vegas, which we all knew was as inevitable as an earthquake. 

The rules of the game

Mr. Trump always uses two teleprompters, as do most politicians. But I wonder metaphorically if it is so he can say different things to different people from one side of his face or the other, and hope listeners won’t notice the difference.

Consider his trips to Florida to show sensitivity to their disaster plight. That was a nice thing to do. Those people who wanted to hear those words did so and were pleased. But then on that same day, he turned and told the DACA people that they would soon be deported because they are “illegal.”

Do not let the internet be privatized

Some of the biggest players in the internet space are trying to achieve a seemingly minor but actually profound change in the way the internet delivers information to you. The internet is about to be moneti$ed. Some companies are proposing that they be able to pay for preferred delivery of internet packets (a fixed size of digital data much like a tweet is 140 characters) presumably based on some promise of helping to pay for a grander internet infrastructure “for the benefit of taxpayers.”