Nicolas Maduro has been President of Venezuela for four years. His Presidency a steady decline to the gates of Hell. First no toilet paper. Then no food. Finally, pets and zoo animals eaten. Along the way, people disappearing or killed.

Today, Venezuela stands at those gates. It is election day. A special election day. Maduro wants to replace Venezuela’s National Assembly and adopt a new Constitution. The new National Assembly will be composed of persons nominated by Maduro. The new Constitution will give him the powers of a dictator.

I have written about Venezuela the four years Maduro has been President. I was intrigued when the nation ran out of toilet paper.

It has bothered me the people never revolted. They protest in huge numbers. In recent weeks, a handful have clashed with Maduro supporters.

Turns out Cuba is behind it all. Yes, our tiny neighbor 90 miles to the south. Cuba is responsible for everything that has been happening in Venezuela.

Cuba is the power. It controls the levers of power. The government and those who support it.

Mary Anastasia O’Grady wrote an excellent opinion piece for the Wall Street Journal’s July 17, 2017 edition. Titled: How Cuba Runs Venezuela.

Cuba has been trying for 50 years to sow its ideological revolution in South America. Concerning Venezuela, it has succeeded.

Cuba needs Venezuela to transport Colombian cocaine to the United States and to Africa to supply Europe. It also relies heavily on cut-rate Venezuelan oil.

Cuba has established a Soviet type hold on Venezuela. Working in Venezuela are 50 high ranking Cuban military officers, 4,500 Cuban soldiers, and 34,000 doctors and health professionals who are there to defend Cuba’s tyranny with arms if necessary.

Thousands of other Cubans hold high level Venezuelan government positions.

The Cubans have toilet paper and eat well.

Similar to Soviet oversight, each Venezuelan military commander has a civilian minder. A person who watches every turn and reports to higher ups any deviation from expected conduct.

I find it amazing how relatively silent the American media has been over the years re Cuba’s influence.

Today’s election is most important. I fear Maduro and his followers will win. Nothing good can come from the victory for the Venezuelan people and the rest of the world.

Last week when Trump lifted our new relationship with Cuba, I thought he was succumbing to that small group of Cubans who had to flee Cuba fifty and more years ago and now reside in Miami. A poor reason I thought.

Now, I wonder if Trump was motivated to show the world he stood against the evils imposed by Cuba upon Venezuela.

Regardless, the Monroe Doctrine has been forgotten.

Yesterday was Saturday. It became my Sunday. My lazy day.

I never left the house. Read, wrote, napped and watched TV.

Hackley’s journal has suggested, at least to me, that Hackley used slaves. Not as an owner. He rented them.

Further indication of Hackley as a lessee is found in his entry of this date in 1856. Hackley speaks of his cook Black Matilda. It was yellow fever time. He wrote she had “some fever and pains in the head.”

Hackley got Black Matilda out of the house immediately. Delivered her to someone else to worry about.

Some generally unaware history concerning Harry Truman. Harry Truman loved Key West and Key West to this day loves Harry Truman.

On this date in 1965, President Lyndon Johnson signed Medicare into law. He did so at the Truman Library in Independence. Truman was still alive and attended.

Why the Truman Library and in Truman’s presence?

Truman was the first President to propose national health insurance. Congress opposed. He could never get it passed.

Johnson further paid tribute to Truman by enrolling Truman as Medicare’s first beneficiary.

Enjoy your Sunday!


Tonight is the big night as far as Fantasy Fest is concerned. The Parade! Fifty to seventy floats. Seventy thousand people. Duval jam packed with people yelling and screaming for beads.

Two observations.

I did the parade once on a float. Howard Livingston’s. I think it was the first time he had a float. The parade begins down Whitehead. Then a couple of blocks of Front Street. Followed by the turn onto Duval.

There is nothing to compare to the thrill involved as you hit Duval. Thousands of people. As far as the eye can see. Yelling and screaming. A high!

Seventy thousand people. No joke. No exaggeration. I have always wondered where they sleep? Not enough rooms in Key West. Actually, not enough rooms in all of the Keys.

Some sleep on the beach. If you rise early tomorrow morning, drive down along Smathers Beach. You will see.

I will not be there to watch the festivities. I live three islands up from Key West in Key Haven. I have to drive into Key West. Where to park? No where to be found. People, including me,  stick there cars anywhere. And then walk a great distance to the place from which they will watch the parade.

Twice my car has been towed. $200 plus to get it back in the middle of the night. In addition to which you have to find a friend to get out of bed and drive you to Stock Island where the car has been delivered.

Today is Halloween, also. Robert and Ally attend Montessori. Yesterday, the students were required to dress as a recent historical figure. Robert went as Walt Disney, Ally as Susan B. Anthony. Ally even carried a sign…..Let Women Vote.

Halloween night is another reason I will be staying home this year. A tradition has developed. Key West parents drive their children to Key Haven to trick or treat. Some come in the back of pick up trucks. Parking will be at a premium the first half mile into Key Haven.

The kids come to Key Haven to trick or treat because the goodies are better and the homes are waiting for them. Key West for some strange reason does not work that way. Most homes are darkened for the evening. I suspect because the residents are working or playing. Key Haven residents are waiting for the ghosts and goblins. Their homes are all lite. Many sit on their front lawns with tables of candy for the visitors.

This continues down Key Haven Road to Cypress. It ends about half way down Cypress. The streets are overflowing with young ones. I live at the very end of Cypress. They never get down to me.

My concern is driving home. I have done it at various hours. It is difficult to weave through the mass of children covering the streets. An accident waiting to happen some year. I do not want to be the one. Ergo, better I stay home.

Did my bit on KONK News radio yesterday. Interviewing me was Don Riggs who was talking with me from Phoenix. A great interview. Don a hell of a guy. Once lived and worked in Key West. Worked for KONK Life radio while here.

Syracuse/Florida State at noon. Syracuse 3-4. Florida State 6-1 and ranked 17th nationally. We are going to get killed! However there is always next year and the year after. Not wishful thinking. Many Syracuse players are freshmen, including our terrific quarterback Eric Dungey.

Don and Chris coming in Sunday night. After Fantasy Fest. They prefer the island quiet and to themselves.

Enjoy your day! Drive carefully! Watch out for the kids!


A couple. Consensual sex. Bradenton Beach. Middle of the afternoon. Beach not crowded. A three year old girl nearby. Someone nearby videod.

An interesting issue. Sex on beach. Not wild. He on top, she under him. It has happened many times on beaches everywhere, though not common.

The Bradenton couple were arrested. Tried. Jury and all. The jury returned its verdict yesterday. Guilty. Lewd conduct the charge. Both facing up to 15 years in jail. Prosecutor insists and believes they will receive lengthy sentences.

My problem. Banking executives crashed our economy in 2008. Millions hurt. Tax payer dollars required to the bail banks out. No criminal charges ever brought. Banks too big to prosecute.

Where is the justice?

Wednesday has turned out to be my screw off day. I need a break after writing sunday, monday and tuesday. I try to do nothing.

I went to Body Owners in the morning. My half hour on the anti-gravity treadmill.

Later in the afternoon, I shaved. My beard a week old. I almost did not shave. I had the beginnings of a beard.

Stopped at Don’s Place around 6. Spent a couple of hours chatting with Don. Always enjoyable.

Then to Geiger Key for dinner. No empty seats at the bar. Tables all empty. I did not want to be the solitary customer at a table. Left.

Went to Hogfish. What a difference! Like day and night! Jam packed. A money maker!

I was able to get a seat at the bar. I enjoyed something different. Grouper sliders. Outstanding! Recommend them.

I have not mentioned the diet in a while. Still on it. Nothing happening. It has been well over a month. I hit 35 pounds lost and then stopped. In a month plus, I have neither gained nor loss. I have tried mixing up the foods a bit. Nothing seems to help. That is one reason I am thrilled with the anti-gravity treadmill. Maybe some exercise will help.

Enjoy your day!