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‘I can relate’

Well, a payday — or should I say, no payday — of the government shutdown has come and gone. I understand that there’s a lot of nervousness about rent, car payments, utility bills and so on. But hey, they’ll adjust; they always do. At least that’s what the Donald says because he claims he can relate to them. Is that because he’s seen them adjust when he hasn’t paid his workers through declaring multiple bankruptcies or defrauding people with his Trump University? Or is it because he adjusted by getting millions from Daddy whenever he screwed up? I doubt that it is because he feels any empathy toward these people. It’s pretty clear that what matters to him is hearing how great he is.

If you had been paying attention, you would know that weeks ago there was an agreement to fund the government, until the right-wing talking (or should I say raving?) heads started calling him out on caving on the WALL. Can’t upset Donnie! Heavens, no! Wait a minute. What do you need taxpayer money for? Mexico is going to pay for it! Notice that if the taxpayer has to foot the bill, it won’t be Trump’s buddies who got the nice tax breaks; it will be the working stiff whom he continues to con with his malarkey. And on it goes. By the way, didn’t Mitch McConnell recently complain about the deficit? How is spending $5.6 billion going to help that? Guess we’ll just have to look at those pesky things like Medicare, Social Security, education and so on. Shouldn’t be a problem to trim some there. Aye caramba! Whoops! I must be from El Salvador. Can’t be an American talking like that. By the way, that money could fix Flint’s water crisis, fund pre-K, provide 800,000 Americans with health care, create green jobs and so on … but hey, let’s get our priorities straight.

Check this out. If you are so afraid of an invasion by people from Central America, ask yourself why? Do you really know any, or is it all this “Oooh! Scary brown people, drug dealers, killers, rapists, terrorists, oooh! Scary, scary!” Never mind that immigrants commit less crimes then native-born or that Trump’s own State Department says that there is no credible evidence that operatives of terrorist groups entered through our southern border. You see, there’s the brilliance of the right wing, the fascist, the dictator, the great leader, whatever you want to call it. Scare the people with whatever falsehood you can come up with, and the ability to see truth from lies, fact from fiction, poof! Gone. It worked in Germany. It worked in Rwanda. It worked in Cambodia. God help us, it seems to be taking hold here.

Now these guys have a lot of help. The so-called liberal media? That’s a joke. Most of the media is owned by conservatives, e.g. Fox News, Sinclair and others. CNN, owned by Time Warner CORPORATION, and MSNBC, owned by Comcast CORPORATION, are really pretty much middle of the road and with few exceptions could hardly be called liberal. After all, who benefits by the Republican policies? The corporations and the rich, not the average citizen. They’re not interested in upsetting the apple cart too much. Any how, believe what you want, or believe what you’re told to believe. The latter is probably more accurate. Could you at least make an attempt to educate yourselves on the facts? Oh darn, I forgot that there’s alternative facts! That might go a long way if you really want to make this country great.

P.S.: I’ve been experiencing emotional whiplash for the last two years. I alternate between anger, bewilderment, despair and Lord knows what else. I’ve finally nailed it down. DEEP and PROFOUND SADNESS. How on earth have we come to this state of lack of compassion for our fellow man in the year 2019? Heaven help us!

Jim Hoit lives in Duane.