TRUMP NOT MAN ENOUGH FOR LISTENING SESSION WITH DOUGLAS HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS

The kids from Parkland’s Douglas High School are tough. The buck stops with them! They appear committed to bringing the gun issue to a head.

Trump hears their cries. He has to do something. His nature.

It was announced yesterday that the President plans listening sessions this week with students and teachers. The announcement did not say what students and teachers.

Those from Douglas High School where 17 were killed? I doubt it. The students would make him look foolish. For two reasons. First, from the mouth of children comes truth. Second, the students know bullshit when they hear it.

The confrontation would be interesting.

I do not believe it will occur, however. A losing proposition for Trump. He would come out of it looking bad.

I believe that where ever and with whom ever the listening sessions will be held will be from another area. Trump will be working at rigging the meeting.

Remember rigged from the election?

Staying with the Douglas High School shooting a moment longer, there is a need for blood. O negative.

Enough blood was available to care for the injured victims. The supply is now tapped out. A request has gone forth to anyone who should wish to donate to help replenish O negative. Instructions direct traveling to their usual donation sites to give.

The AR-15 rifle in the news other than in Parkland.

Levi Patterson coaches a 9 and under baseball team in Nesoho, Missouri. Third graders. The team needs to raise money. The father of one of the players sells guns. He donated an AR-15 rifle for a raffle prize.

The team players, age 7-9, are selling the raffle tickets.

Coach Patterson sees no problem with the AR-15 being used. He believes people think differently about guns in his area. In effect, the AR-15 is ok.

Tyler Tannahill is a Kansas Congressional candidate. A month ago, he decided to have a giveaway contest. Someone to win an AR-15 rifle.

Douglas occurred last week. Tannahill refuses to withdraw the AR-15 as the prize. He is a passionate defender of gun rights.

Sometimes we see the same person over a period of several years and yet  never get to know their names, etc. Always a smile and cheerful hello in passing.

My situation with one of the concierges at the Marriott Beachside.

We discovered each other on a more personal basis yesterday.

My photo and announcement of Irma and I covered the front page of KONK Life last week. The concierge called out to me yesterday morning by name. She said she had not known it before, but had seen my pic and read the article. Told me she has begun reading my blog.

Her name, Toni Tarracino. Last name sound familiar? She is one of the daughters of now deceased Captain Tony. Key West Mayor, saloon keeper, icon, etc. Toni proudly told me she is known as Little Toni.

My day began with the stop at the Marriott Beachside. Followed by a business lunch at the Geiger Key Marina. At noon, hardly a seat. No question the season has arrived.

Back to my home. I had no hot water. A two day wait for a plumber. Called a friend who stopped over. Problem resolved in 15 minutes. After two days and three cold showers, it was a pleasure later in the afternoon to enjoy a hot one.

Last night, the Gardens. A comfortable way to finish sunday.

Many people.

Ran into Jenna Stauffer. A love of my life for 10 years. Jenna was the producer for the TV show I did for three years. She was all bubbly and excited. Just returned from Paris.

Also ran into June Hudson. A couple of years since we have seen each other. Unchanged. Charming and lovely.

Stopped at Tavern ‘n Town for a late dinner. A rack of lamb. Nothing else. Diet still holding at 19 pounds.

Iguanas are an exotic species. Look like small dragons. To Key West residents, disgusting.

The iguanas are not native. They started their invasion about 15 years ago. Now, all over the island.

They deficate all over, including in the pools. They eat your expensive planted flowers.

They fear not. You can walk up to one and it will not move.

All of a sudden, the State has become aware there is an iguana problem. Don’t know where the State has been. However the State does not wish them killed. The State has scheduled clinics to advise how to capture and arrange for their removal to another part of the State.

Capture and remove? How stupid. Authorize their killing.

A State representative said, “We do not know the extent of the threat.” Live here and you will know. They are all over the place.

The State should recall how it handled the python invasion. Too little, too late. Now number in excess of 1 million. They can only be controlled, not eradicated.

Can you imagine 1 million plus iguanas? They will be living in our homes. Laugh not.

Dueling Bartenders tonight at Aqua.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

 

CHILDREN SUFFERING POST IRMA

Who is feeding the children of the Keys post Irma?

Irma came and went 5 months ago on September 10. Things appear better in Key West. Duval booming. Though I suspect the tourist numbers are down. Down based on a fear that Irma’s effects still with us.

Physical damage more obvious as you move up the Keys. Especially from Cudjoe to Marathon. House damage, especially. Small tent cities evident. Cars visible housing whole families.

A food problem exists. Full employment has not returned. Too many businesses still closed because of Irma. Waiting for federal or insurance monies to repair or rebuild.

The food problem most evident with children. The schools have brought it to light.

I became aware via an excellent article in KONK E-Blast and the Key West Citizen editorial, both this morning.

The federal government ceased paying for school meals as of February 1. The kids still line up for food. Say, please charge it. The schools charge. Otherwise, many children would not eat.

The numbers shocking. Four thousand living units in the Keys damaged beyond repair. Prior to Irma, homeless children numbered 150. Now, more than 500.

Since February 1, it has been costing the School District $400 a day to feed the additional homeless and others whose parents have not yet returned to work.

The feds who cut off FEMA funding prohibit school food programs from acquiring debt or using surplus funding. The School Board has to figure out how the monies can be found administratively. In the meantime, donations are coming in to keep the children fed.

Another big evening last night.

Began with the Sons and Daughters of Italy’s scholarship fundraiser. Involved was a silent auction and drawing for a cooked and served Italian dinner for 8.

Free food at the event. Home made by the members. Outstanding! I could not have eaten better anywhere else last night. Dates stuffed with goat cheese wrapped in bacon. Meatballs in sauce. More. All mouth watering.

Blew my diet a bit. Only as to the stuffed dates. Enjoyed two.

Catherine was with me. We went over to Louie’s Backyard afterwards. Sat on the deck outside enjoying a couple of drinks.

I ran into Kate Miano. One of the finest persons in Key West. She told me she decided to run for Mayor. She will win. If she is able to run the City as she does her Gardens Hotel, Key West will benefit big time.

I was pleased and impressed with the announcement by Mueller yesterday that 13 Russians and 3 Russian companies had been indicted for screwing around with our Presidential election. Knocks the legs out of Trump’s claim that the Russians did not. Recall, he said Putin told him he and the Russians had nothing to do with it. He believed Putin.

I switched to FOX News immediately upon learning. Curious as to how FOX would be handling the news. Hannity was on. He seemed out of kilter. Unusual for him. Always damning things not Trump. He was obviously confused. He was suggesting the indictments were serious business and proof the Russians had committed wrong.

A couple of hours later when I returned to FOX, it was obvious Hannity had received other orders. Nothing good re the indictments was coming out of his mouth.

This morning FOX was the same. Three newscasters chatting back and forth. All negative re the indictments, of course. They lack backbone. They also don’t want to lose their pay checks.

I came across a Woodrow Wilson quote. Fits Trump perfectly: “All the extraordinary men I have ever known were chiefly extraordinary in their own estimation.”

Trump visited Parkland last night. Stopped at the hospital. Spoke to two of the injured children. A boy and girl. Focused his statements on first responders and the wonderful job they did. Failed to discuss the shooting itself, guns, and change to our gun laws.

Governor Scott and Senator Rubio were with him. It is reported Rubio spoke to the President emotionally re the impact on local families: ” This is a community and a state that’s in deep pain and they want action to make sure this never happens again.”

Trump replied: ” You can count on it.”

Good luck!

Trump recently submitted his proposed budget. The budget calls for a 30 percent cut to an Education Department grant program that supports safe schools. The budget also slashes public funds for mental health treatment.

The President speaks out of both sides of his mouth.

Seems to be a Trump morning for me.

Another Trump story involving the ladies. If this paragraph were titled, it would read something like Same Place, Same Week, Same Bungalow, Lake Tahoe.

It was reported that at the same 2006 golf tournament at Lake Tahoe where the President purportedly had a sexual liaison with porn star Stormy Daniels, he had another. She revealed herself yesterday. Her name Karen McDougal. 1998 Playboy Playmate of the Year. She received $150,000. Daniels settled for $130,000.

And no one seems to care. Morality out the window as far as this President is concerned.

Syracuse/Miami at noon. Vegas line has Miami a 6 point favorite. Syracuse needs the win. I will be watching.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

HAPPY BIRTHDAY AFGHANISTAN

Yes, it is Happy Birthday Afghanistan! Sixteen years ago, the United States invaded Afghanistan. The war has turned out to be the longest in U.S. history.

No end in sight. Getting worse.

Thousands of American dead. Thousands more maimed.

Civilian deaths increasing.

Death rate of children is up 9 percent from 2016. Women, 23 percent.

From 2015-2016, opium production up 43 percent. The war, graft, and money responsible.

Sixteen years ago, the number of opium poppy fields was low. The Taliban were anti-opium production and had forced production to be dramatically reduced.

Then came the U.S. invasion. The invasion the major reason for the substantial rise in production. The Taliban were defeated. Today, Afghanistan provides 90 percent of the world’s opium supply.

I have written and said the past few years how interesting it is that with all the warring and battles going on in Afghanistan, not one poppy field has been destroyed. Our people die. Afghans, also. The poppy fields and those working them, not.

The reason is simple. Washington mandates their protection. Called politics. Our Marines serving in Afghanistan are guarding the poppy fields.

Many Afghans are dependent on poppy work for their livelihoods. They live better than those not involved who are indiscriminately being killed.

There is a fear in Washington that if the poppy fields were destroyed, the people supporting the U.S. would turn against us. Instead of eradication, the U.S. supports a change in what is grown. The U.S. has a program of teaching Afghans how to grow other things such as wheat and corn.

Not smart. For one simple reason. There is not the same monies to be made off wheat and corn. Poppy much more profitable. Significantly so.

The Marines know it. They take their orders from Washington, however. No matter how you view it, Washington is pursuing a path that will not lead to eliminating the poppy fields.

With all the money being made, there has to be some changing hands. Who, how, when, where, I do not know. However you do not have to be a genius to recognize it has to be a fact.

Poppy becomes opium. Opium, heroin. Heroin rampant on the streets of the United States. Killing many every day.

Overdosing has resulted in a tsunami of bodies. Opioids a crisis. Trump campaigned that opioids were a crisis and he would deal with it as such when elected. He appointed a Commission immediately to study and report back with recommendations for him. The Commission did. It said opioids were a crisis and the U.S. should pursue it as such.

Trump declined to do so. He changed his position. He claimed it was not a crisis and could be dealt with effectively on a non-crisis basis.

In the meantime, the medical field claims opioids constitute the worst epidemic in drug history. Medical examiners/coroners cannot keep up with the number of bodies to be autopsied. Many are leaving the field.

In 2016, there were 64,000 overdose deaths. Bodies awaiting autopsy are backing up. Cold storage trailers are being used to hold bodies awaiting autopsy. Some medical examiners are requiring those delivering the bodies to find another place for them till they are ready to perform the autopsy.

Such is the story of Afghanistan on this the 16th year of the war. A terrible evolution. No resolution in sight.

I wanted to watch Syracuse/Pitt yesterday afternoon. Stayed home to watch it from the comfort of the couch. The game was not available via Comcast on any channel. Sad because Syracuse won. 27-24. I would have enjoyed watching my team win.

The Chart Room first last night. David, Shaun, and Kevin. Met Ray. Visiting from Cape Coral. Comes down several times a year.

NRA and politics topics of discussion. No one yelled at anyone. Kevin behaved himself.

Stopped at La Te Da for a bite to eat afterwards.

A post Irma report.

Progress being made. However, slowly. Too much debris and too much damage. Everyone busting their ass. Recovery will take time.

Some places not open yet. Others advising they will not be open for Fantasy Fest. The list long of those who will be open by Fantasy fest and those that will not. Included are 2 Cents, Virgilio’s, Better Than Sex, Regal Cinema, Burger King, and the Yamaha dealership.

Molly died. Molly the dolphin. Fifty plus years old. The matriarch at the Dolphin Research Center.

Molly is believed to have been the oldest living dolphin in captivity.

In her senior years, Molly took to watching over the new born. In grandmotherly fashion. Helping to raise them, teaching them.

Happy birthday to William Hackley. He turned 50 on October 7, 1856.

Robots keep coming! Used in one business today, another the next.

The newest robot is Sally the Salad Robot. Sally’s sole function is to serve as a salad bar of sorts. Apparently, a Sally is needed. Salad bars are magnets for bacteria and viruses.

A Silicon Valley company called Chowbotics manufacturing Sally robots.

Neo-Nazis have returned to Charlottesville for the third time since the August 12 confrontation. Quick visits by a small group. In and out. Led by Richard Spencer, an alt-right leader and founder.

The Mayor said, “You’re not welcome here! Go home!”

The neo-Nazis chant during their visits: “You will not replace us. You will not erase us. / “We’re back and we’re going to keep coming back.” / “Get used to the alt-right. You’re going to have to get used to white identity.”

Enjoy your Sunday!