Greetings and salutations (not to mention libations) from the sand, sun and surf of Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard and the sunny, snow dusted, soon to be blizzard bound island of Nantucket! Great to be with you on this last day of the year, yes, the 31st day of December, 2013, a year we will all remember for so many different reasons and no matter your stripe, you cannot deny that it was a year full of electricity, yes? So on this final day of ‘the year of the snake’, let us look back and SEA what actually happened and ponder what may occur in 2014… In January, President Barack Obama was inaugurated to his second term as our very fine 44th U.S. President. Historically speaking, and I am an historian, just being elected as our first African-American executive should have been enough, just ask Jackie Robinson breaking into baseball’s coveted club called Major League Baseball, he’ll tell ya! With high hopes for the year, he was met with obstinate House and Senate members–fueled by Koch money–crazies from the right, the raid on our embassy in Benghazi, resulting in the deaths of Americans including Ambassador Stevens, embarrassing leaks by former NSA contractor Eric Snowden, whose unprecedented release of (only 1 percent of his data thus far) sensitive information regarding the NSA, i.e. the fact Americans are being spied upon as well as foreign leaders…adding in the botched health care roll out due to a failed website, made for a rather bloody nose to be sure. He failed to pass any kind of gun legislation, although it was blocked by the NRA lobby to be sure, after the Sandy Hook tragedy that occurred in Newtown, Connecticut, (God rest those children). Of course he was applauded for standing firm against the Ted Cruz (R-TX)/Koch brothers/House republican government shutdown that plummeted that GOP brand’s popularity into the single digits, right around the positive feedback when it comes to pond scum and Ronald Reagan films. Standing firm against their attempt to derail the ACA, the Affordable Care Act known now as “Obamacare” (a republican think tank idea from the 1980’s to begin with)–indeed taking hostages while playing around with the debt limit and the global economy, democrats including the President should hold their heads up high. And even though the President made no progress when it came to raising the minimum wage to a level where it should have been at this moment in our nation’s history if adjusted for inflation, $10.45 an hour, barely a living wage, the workers of America in low wage jobs, i.e. Walmart “always lower wages” and McDonald’s “I’m lovin’ slave wages” (a microcosm in the global problem called ‘the idolatry of MONEY’), began making noise with even Pope Francis, truly a great choice by TIME magazine for “person of the year” agreeing that greed and God do not go hand in hand, especially if you are a TRUE Christian, I know this President will make 2014 a year for action. One bright spot was a bipartisan agreement between Senator Patty Murray of Washington and congressman Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, who pushed through a two year budget that will effectively put an end to the constant ‘live by crisis to crisis’ philosophy defining this 113th congress, the ultimate do nothing congress, who passed only 55 bills into LAW this year, an all time low, which models their popularity with the even more unpopular ‘tea party’. Even John Boehner got into the spirit when he snapped at a press conference recently…exclaiming after being told by his puppeteers who have been pulling his strings of late in regard to the government shutdown not working as they are trying to unseat and repeal “Obamacare”–“…are you kidding me!!!” Of course the Supreme Court had a few eye openers, such as “Shelby” where the 1965 Voting Rights Act took it on the chin, while it smiled on the LGBT community with even states like Utah joining in the rainbow coalition. None of us really know what the republicans are thinking (what their “logic” is) as they try to expand the ‘tent’ by pissing off women across the spectrum (unless you live in Connecticut)–diving into their bedrooms and bodies, do nothing about immigration reform, take a blind eye and ignorant attitude towards global warming, continue allowing big polluters out their like the oil and gas industry to destroy our fresh water drinking sources like the Delaware River Basin/ NE Pennsylvania/New York’s southern tier (18 million people get their water from this aquifer) by Fracking for ‘natural gas’ (pumping 596 deadly chemicals into the ground in an unregulated industry that the clean water act of 1973 can’t touch–Frack you frackers!), a process whose carbon footprint is worse than that of coal, while they religiously side with the gun lobby so as to make horror shows like Newtown more likely in the future, as it sets up “stand your ground laws” in over a dozen states–starting with Florida, where Trayvon Martin, a boy was killed by a gun crazed lunatic who got off scot-free–insane laws designed to make this nation even more dangerous than it was before… just what the NRA ordered. Give me a break Senator! Thank God for groups like the ‘Dream Defenders’ who are trying to prop up these at risk kids who, like in all parts of our poorer urban countryside, attend falling down around your ears schools, set in dangerous neighborhoods, ‘urban deserts’ they call them to go along with their ‘food deserts’, yes, prop up these kids to get help before they fall prey to what is known as school to prison pipelines. Like in New York, ’stopped and frisked’ constantly, profiled daily and put away with unjust mandatory minimums for non-violent drug offenses, mainly marijuana, put in for-profit prisons where the cycle just continues as they get out. Hopefully Attorney General Eric Holder will do something about this epidemic for young black males as the new year begins, for as the old Ad from the 70’s states, “…the mind is a terrible thing to waste.” With the wonderful and newly elected Pope Francis calling for the greed, now rampant in global corporations, to end, the Dow Jones Industrial hit new heights again on Friday, hitting well above 16,000 points as those big Wall Street banks only getting bigger to bail out with almost none of the Dodd-Frank regulations amounting to anything substantial. Couple all of that with the constant push to exploit every ounce of energy from the most pristine parts of the world, thinking only of PROFIT and most certainly attaining said profit over people, it may be fair to say the corporations won and the end times are nigh. However, I don’t believe that. I believe this world is becoming more transparent by the second and that nothing can be done by the new world order that can’t be undone. That is what was so inspiring about Malala, who I will leave you with today. She is a young girl, around 15, from Afghanistan. She was shot in the head by a member of the Taliban simply for voicing her desire to learn, to attend school. Not just her, but she claimed with ferocity that every girl in that backward country should be allowed this right we all take for granted, the right to access KNOWLEDGE. After a triumphant recovery, she made the short list for the Nobel Peace Prize and has been seen across the airwaves here in the U.S. from Jon Stewart’s “Daily Show” to the White House’s President Barack Obama…God’s speed Yousafzai Malala, God’s speed! For that is the story folks, of what is to come. Take this past year and put it on steroids because we are in for a fascinating and fun ride! God bless you all and thanks for tuning into seacapecod.net all year long. I want to wish you and yours a wonderful, safe, prosperous and beautiful New Year! SEA ya’ll next year, same bat time, same bat channel! PRESERVE THE WILDERNESS! Peace~M
December 31, 2013
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