The Worst Hard Time–Book Review

Dust Bowl

Thought I would give politics a break well at least for a day:)

I just finished reading a book titled The Worst Hard Time by Timothy Egan.  This book is about the dust bowl, something that is rarely talked about anymore but a part of history that destroyed so many lives.

The dust bowl came in the 1930’s and is also known as the Dirty Thirties and black blizzards or black rollers.  Their was really two parts to the dust bowl, agriculture and nature weather cycles.  Their was the drought which came in 1934, 1936 and 1939-1940.  During the drought the farmers conducted significant plowing which made the land bare.  When the winds came coupled with the drought, it tore up all the sand and dirt and whipped it into a frenzy.

You would never think that a drought and wind could cause so much destruction but it certainly did.

This book takes a look at those that stayed in their homes and didn’t flee the massive wall of dust.  The remembrances of what it was like is gripping but I will say it is hard to read meaning this book doesn’t sugar coat the horrible environmental disaster.  It also provides pictures of what this was like and the pictures are so riveting, it is almost like you were there.  One specific picture showed sand in the home of a farmer and the sand went as high as the window inside the house.  In one corner the sand was over four feet high.  Can you imagine?

The dust bowl reached as far as New York to Washington D.C. and the visibility was less than 3 ft.  April 14, 1935 went down in history as that is when the “Black Sunday” arrive and centered on Texas and Oklahoma and touched Colorado, New Mexico and Kansas.  It affected over 100,000,000 acres of land.

This book also states that there is no true way to tell how many people died but does state many died while trying to outrun the dust storm and were overcome on the roads.  Others died IN piles of sand in their homes.  This is even after they tried to seal the windows and doors with wet rags.

Some readers have said this book is too depressing but I am a firm believer that you have to educate yourself and try to understand why this happened so we don’t repeat the same mistakes of the past.

It was weird for me because while reading this book, I was constantly thirsty which has never happened to me before.

If you like history then this book is for you but be prepared because it does go into detail and show pictures of what it truly was like.

Enjoy the read and now I am off to my next one that I read about on a blog.

Peace

Trump Taking Away Tax Deductions for 401K?

Trump

I read an article today that stated Trump wants to remove the tax benefit of the 401K savings plan while lowering corporate taxes.  Lets see what is wrong with this picture.  Politicians are stating we need to pay for the wall so let’s do that at the detriment of the american people.

Saving is low meaning people are having a hard time-saving for retirement let alone increasing it and he wants to take away the advantage of this.  I asked myself why?  Does he really thing a wall will stop people from coming here illegally?  I think not.  They will dig a tunnel which has been done, they will climb the wall and if they want to come here bad enough there is always a way.

We have to get out of the mentality of building a wall and address why they are coming.  Work with the government of Mexico to make it so they don’t want to come here.  Sounds simple which I know it’s not.  I also know people will say why should the USA resolve other governments problem.  It’s not solving their problems, it’s helping them figure out why and give ideas and assistance to fix it.

For me taking away the benefit of the 401K is not worth building the wall.  Trump is back tracking on items he said he wouldn’t touch.  How many billions for the military with 3 billion for the wall.  Billion not million.

Trump is a CEO, not a politician.  More time on twitter than figuring out what to truly do for the American people and taking this away is not the right thing to do.  I hope people who voted for him know the impact of this.  I don’t know about you but I surely don’t want to work until I’m 80 just so I can afford retirement.

Trump 3

Again I ask why?

Peace!

Bill O’Reilly Returns

Bill O'Reilly

Was he every really gone?  He is returning on Monday with a podcast.  This after he was let go from his show.  Based on allegations of sexual harassment.  Five woman received settlement payouts and now all this has come out. Is he guilty or did he pay this money to make the allegations just go away?  13 Million is a lot to just make it go away.  His reputation was known in the industry as has been documented.

Would he have been fired if the advertisers didn’t leave?  I think not.  I think all would have been well if the advertisers stayed.  This isn’t just a story of sexual harassment but it’s also a story on money and greed.  The Murdoch’s play a huge role in this.  They knew about the payouts and at that time did nothing but now that the advertisers were leaving and threatening to leave, they stepped in a fired him.  If O’Reilly would have made them more money than leaving advertisers would have then I believe he would have remained employed and reaping the benefits.  A bigger than thou attitude and even more disgraceful behavior.  Who sets a podcast so soon after they are fired for a terrible offense…maybe a narcissistic person.  I don’t know that for sure as I am not a mental health professional but what I do know is he is a disgrace.  This has nothing to do with political beliefs but everything to do with moral code and human decency.

Sometimes in life a person has to be brought down a peg or two in order to understand that there are ramifications to their actions.  With many people this works but not with Bill O’Reilly.  He gets fired, collects money and does a podcast.  Unbelievable!

There is another aspect to this story though that needs to be addressed.  Why did these women keep quiet or did they?  Why did they take the money?  Did taking the settlement have anything to do with additional woman getting harassed?  This isn’t victim blaming as much as it is asking why.  I asked a friend of mine if she was one of these women would she have taken the settlement and her response was “hell no”.   I then asked “if you had no money, was in foreclosure with nowhere else to go and no money for food, would you take the settlement”?  She looked at me and said “arggg I hate when you do that” but she answered and said “I just don’t know”.  The point was depending on the situation will sometimes dictate what you do.  With that said I would hope that I wouldn’t take the money, no matter what.  Can I guarantee it, no, but I can hope.  I also would never want to even be in that situation.  To choose money or being thrown through the mud and having all my information good and bad being brought up in court.  We all know or should know that is exactly what would have happened and actually did with one of the women.  Money can buy great lawyers, detectives etc. but the one thing money can never buy is moral character and human decency.

Much Peace!

Cheese Bandits Strike!

Organized Cheese Bandits Strike!

 

Cheese

Well there is still no clue to the cheese bandit mystery.  Yes you read that right…cheese bandits.  Someone stolen $46000 worth of cheese.  All over the news today the reporters are calling it “organized” cheese bandits.  A semi trailer with 41000 pounds of Wisconsin best parmesan cheese was stolen.  This particular theft was a year ago and still no idea on who did it.

Hmm now I’m no cheese connoisseur unless of course you call triscuit and sliced cheese a connoisseur but what would someone do with that much cheese and did they even know that’s what was in the trailer.  The driver left the trailer in a lot that “looked” secure.  You know it had security cameras.

Cargo crimes are increasing but typically the items that are stolen are easy to sell.  Cheese on the other hand is extremely difficult.  This isn’t the first time a truck load of cheese was taken.  One was found at a grocery store and recovered.  They say with food, it is typically sold to the mom and pop shops for cheaper than ordering through a legitimate company.

Some say well no harm no foul.  Well it is foul because the price ends up increasing to cover the theft.  In the end we all pay for these thieves.  Easy money, not so easy to me.  I wonder where they store the trailer?  It can’t be too much in the open but then again maybe it can.  Take the markers off and paint the trailer and boom, brand new.  Then though you still have the problem of rotten cheese if you don’t get rid of it.

Sounds like to much trouble to me so I will keep my triscuit and sliced cheese and leave the “good” cheese to these bandits!

Much Peace!

 

What is a PewDiePie?

My niece ran into the house and looked me square in the eye and said “what do you think of PewDiePie”?  Hmm I thought and I quickly tried to think of something to say.  I knew I truly had no idea what this was.  A tv show, food, cartoon, I had no clue.  Finally I said “well honey what is a PewDiePie”?  She looked and me and shook her head and walked away.

I realized at that very moment this must be something very important so like any sane adult, I googled it except then I didn’t know what the spelling was so I guessed.  Low and behold I found it…a YouTube channel.  But could this really be what she was talking about?  Couldn’t be.  Oh but I was wrong because yes it was.

I watched a video and couldn’t get through it.  A short time later I tried another and made it half way through.  I actually said out loud, “what the hell”.  Why this person?

I called her back in the house and said do you really know what this channel is and why the heck would you watch this stuff?  She stood up and said “it’s funny and don’t act so old”.  So old.  I actually didn’t find it funny or humorous in any way shape or form.  Does that make me old?  Is it a generation thing?  What I find as insulting the younger generation finds funny?  Can I not just view this person as a youtube personality and nothing else.  I don’t think I can and I think I’m OK with that.

Much Peace!

Today’s Events

I am still getting familiar with WordPress and all of the very cool things that it is capable of.  I still need to do my avatar.  Odd thing is I thought I did but I noticed it didn’t take.  I guess the saying is true…practice makes perfect.  I’ll keep trying to enhance this blog. In the meantime though I will type out my thoughts and wonders.

Today I read an article about a YouTube channel that is being accused of child abuse.  I found that appalling and not sure if it was the truth because in my mind I wondered why someone would put that in the internet.  I researched and couldn’t believe what I saw.  Two adults with five children and the adults would “prank” the kids to the point of crying and screaming.  Every other word from the parents were cuss words.  The parents said it was all scripted but I have never seen a child “act” like that.  It truly broke my heart.  It seemed like the youngest child was the primary one that got picked on.  The channel had over 200,000 subscribers so they were doing this for the money.  Now because of this terrible behavior, they get no more money and they are being investigated for child abuse.  Whether it was scripted or an act I think the parents need if not legal ramifications but certainly therapy and parenting classes.  I’m trying to figure out what I am struggling with the most.  The parents abuse/behavior or the fact that some of the comments were terribly inappropriate.  Is that the world we are in?  Part of me says yes it is but the other part still holds out hope that there is more good in this world than bad.

If that wasn’t bad enough, I had a friend text me and said we are on the verge of war again.  Hmmm I thought.  I of course went and read the news on a break from work.  I see leaders of three countries acting way to macho and none of them want to back down.  We have Russia and North Korea and then the United States, all heavyweights and have much to lose but also to gain.  It’s a scary time.  Verbal threats will lead to action and action will lead to destruction.  I remember my grandparents who lived through the great depression say to me when I was younger “honey, you have to trust your president to do the right thing”.   Goodness I am trying.  I am putting my faith in all of our leadership to stop the verbal fights on social media and get down to business.  Fix what is broken and build relationships.  I know, I know, easier said than done.

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to talk to the leader of another country and what would you say?

Much Peace!

The Wondrous World of Politics

The world of political disagreements.

Today I had a conversation with a friend and she told me of her family and the arguments that politics have caused.  I sat and listened intently and then asked “why can’t people just express themselves and have a voice without criticism”.  She replied “well that’s not the way the world works”.

As I sit here and write this I am still shaking my head.  Why isn’t it?  I don’t agree with my family but I am aware that I don’t have too and I won’t love them any less because we differ.  I am also all to familiar with family disagreements over this subject.

My family has also been split by the political arena.  I have a few cousins that are firm Trump supports and I have a few family members that were Hillary supporters.  On various topics they would discuss but it would always end in an argument and pretty hateful words.  All because of what?  A difference of opinion.  I can sit and listen as long as it’s respectful and hear everyone out because maybe I am missing something or not thinking of all aspects.  I try very hard to allow people their opinion without “jumping”.  I might be upset at their thought process but I look and say “we disagree and we have to agree to disagree but I love you”.  Sometimes depending on the subject, it is very hard because I am a passionate person and believe strongly in certain things.  The belief for a better future is one.  The belief that all women should be allowed to make decisions for themselves.  The belief that all children are precious.  The belief that everyone deserves a chance.

Maybe I am a dreamer, maybe just maybe, that dream might come true.

 

Much Peace!