Monday, June 29, 2015

The Point of No Return

When an airplane having engine trouble is closer to its final destination than it is to its home base, it is said to have reached the point of no return. I’m afraid that’s where America now finds itself.

This tragic fact was brought home for me when I watched a three-minute video produced by an outfit calling itself Government Gone Wild. It started out by telling us that if you type in the words “How do I qualify for…” on your computer, the top 10 sites on any search engine will tell you how to qualify for such things as food stamps, Medicaid, disability and earned income credit. In other words, you and millions of illegal aliens will learn how to latch onto the government teat.

The video also shared the alarming news that 41% of all births and 60% of elderly long term care is paid for with our tax dollars, and that one of every three households, accounting for 144,000,000 people, receive food stamps, subsidized housing, cash welfare and free health care.

It also divulged the fact that as investments go, being poor provides a greater return than silver, gold or stocks, because for every dollar paid in taxes of one kind or another by a poor person, he receives ten dollars in welfare. What’s more, the feds are funding a marketing program to get even more people on food stamps.

Assuming you haven’t been in a coma for the past 30 years, you should have noticed that the problem just keeps getting worse. Under Reagan, 19% of adults paid no income tax. Under Clinton, the percentage rose to 25% and, under George W. Bush, it jumped to 30%. Under Barack Obama, it has soared to 47%. In other words, 53% of us are paying for every government giveaway.

Hard to believe the Boston Tea Party launched the American Revolution over a penny tax on tea. Of course the rallying cry was “No taxation without representation,” which might translate into “It’s not the penny, it’s the principle.” But if they’d had any idea that one day their countrymen would be burdened by a legion of blood-sucking mayors, councilmen, assemblymen, state senators, congressmen, senators, a vice president and Barack Obama, I like to think they’d have spared us the grief and paid the extra penny.

Because I always look for the silver lining, I am hoping that China, having now hacked the government’s computers, not to mention Sony’s and those of several other American companies, will do the right thing and make public what they discovered on Hillary Clinton’s private server.

In recent years, one of the staples of Hollywood has been movies about cliques of mean girls in high school and college. The clique leaders are generally hard-bitten blondes who have it in for a nice girl, who has innocently caught the eye of her boyfriend. It seems to me that they should set one of those movies in Washington with a cast that includes Kirsten Powers, Marie Harf, Jen Psaki and Debbie Wasserman-Schultz. When it comes to cold eyes, snarky smiles and a bratty attitude, Central Casting couldn’t come close to matching this quartet.

Apparently, Neil Young, a Canadian citizen who supports Bernie Sanders, was offended that Donald Trump used his “Rockin’ in the Free World” as a musical accompaniment when announcing his run for the White House. In rebuttal, the Trump team announced they had paid a fee for the song, reminding some of us of Ronald Reagan’s announcing he had paid for the microphone.

My question, though, is why Republican candidates keep picking songs composed by left-wing pinheads. John McCain, Marco Rubio and Mitt Romney, have all been ratted out. Does their musical knowledge go back no further than the 60s? Do they really think that the Beach Boys, Neil Young, Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen, are the be-all and end-all of American music? Are they all tone-deaf? Have they never heard of Cole Porter, Irving Berlin, Richard Rodgers, Frank Loesser, Harry Warren, Vernon Duke, Harold Arlen and George Gershwin, all of whom, on their worst days, wrote better songs than the current crop?

It used to be that only politicians and criminal defense attorneys lied for a living, but it has become something of a growth industry. In just the past few months, we have seen Brian Williams, George Stephanopoulos, Tom Brady and Rachel Dolezal, caught fibbing. I guess because Williams and Stephanopoulos have spent so many years hanging with politicians, they were pretty good at it.

However, Brady, a football player and Dolezal, a psychotic community organizer, confirmed their amateur status by lying so badly, it was embarrassing. In poker circles, when you subconsciously tip off whether or not you’re bluffing, it’s called a “tell.” In Brady’s case, when asked if he had knowingly cheated by using a deflated ball against the Indianapolis Colts, he said: “I don’t believe so.” That was also how Ms. Dolezal responded when she was asked if she was lying when she claimed to be a black woman.

“I don’t believe so” is the appropriate response when asked if one would like to have seconds at a dinner party or if someone asks you if America’s safety and well-being is of primary concern to Barack Obama. On the other hand, when asked if you lied or cheated, “I don’t believe so” runs a close second to “Oh, shoot, how did you guess?”

Although I personally regard Donald Trump’s entry into the GOP primaries as a breath of fresh air in a room filled to the rafters with mealy-mouthed politicians, I must confess I got a kick out of a recent poster I saw bearing his likeness, captioned: “We Shall Overcomb.”

©2015 Burt Prelutsky. Comments?