Morning Stew time!

I hit a wrong button yesterday and was unable to properly complete the blog. Could not figure out what I did wrong. Finally gave up!

Sloan was unavailable at the time. She contacted me later in the afternoon. The solution simple. I had to hit one key and everything was back to normal.

I want to combine the best of 2 days into one blog this morning. May be a bit long. Titled it Morning Stew #7 because there will be no order to the blog. I will be entering this and that as the material comes up in my notes.

Were it not that this is a Morning Stew day, I would have titled the blog CRIME PAYS.

Reference is to Paul Manafort’s sentence. Forty seven months for all the bad he did. The man got away with murder, in effect.

The sentence reflects a failure in the judicial system. Combine it with the failures in the justice system overall. Our country is moving in the wrong direction. People are losing faith. Not a healthy situation.

The most powerful person in the United States is a U.S. District Court Judge. The trial judge in the federal system. More powerful than even a U.S. Supreme Court Justice.

Some District Court Judges exercise their power in undesirable fashions. Manafort’s trial judge T.S. Ellis one of them.

Article III of the Constitution permits federal judges to serve as long as they maintain “good behavior.” Effectively means they can sit their entire lives. Most do.

Ellis is 78 years old. A cantankerous old man. Enjoys playing tough guy from the bench. He has a reputation in the Virginia area as being “Caesar in his own Rome.”

Need I say more.

He gave the prosecution a hard time during the trail. Embarrassed the prosecution on occasion.

He is known as an arch conservative. Apparently.

I handled cases before such judges. You do the best you can. A lawyer and his client are stuck with them. Justice is not served when such persons “rule” our courts.

Today is International Women’s Day. God bless the ladies! We need them. Men have screwed things up for years. Let the ladies control for a while. They can do no worse.

In 1968, a new cigarette came out. Directed towards women. Virginia Slims. Their advertising line: You’ve come a long way, Baby.

Still true today. Ladies, keep it going!

I’ve been doing this blog 12 years now. I have 69,000 subscribers. Some search me out in the Chart Room when they vacation in Key West. Always pleased to meet them

Some are repeat visitors to the Chart Room. Last night, I met one again.

Tom from Indianapolis. Waiting for me as I came in the door. We had met 10 years ago.

Tom obviously a hard worker. He manages something like 36 car washer operations in Indiana. A tough job. He has been with the company many years. Started when there were only a few car washers.

He told me he married in Key West in 2002. Sixty or seventy guests. Wedding and reception planned on a catamaran. The Waterfront Market catering.

An unexpected rain storm. A deluge. Happens occasionally. The Catamaran could not go out. Water too rough.

Rain in the streets 2-3 feet. Not unusual either. Key West has 2 sewer systems. One strictly for run off water. No sewage. The run off sewers cannot take much water. Certain intersections flood. I have seen tourists swimming in these intersections on those occasions.

Tom and his bride in trouble. Their wedding planner came to the rescue. She arranged for the Pier House to take the reception inside one of their large rooms. Waterfront Market Catered at the Pier House. The Pier House did not charge Tom for having Waterfront do the catering.

Tom says…..A great party!

Tom here with friends from Michigan. In addition to Key West, they are doing Islamorada and Marathon.

Tom and I agreed that hopefully it will not be another 10 years before we meet up again.

Mary came in. We had  a drink together at the Chart Room. Then off to La Trattoria for dinner. La Trattoria appears to have become my restaurant of choice for the moment.

Trump did a great job with Venezuela. Another major screw up. He was trying to instigate revolution. Not for any humanitarian reason. Rather to get control of Venezuela’s oil reserves. The largest in the world.

No revolution.

The leader of the opposition Juan Guaido was out of the country. He has returned. Everyone expected him to be jailed.

Maduro no fool. He left him alone. Guaido walks the streets unbothered.

Venezuela’s economy horrible. Inflation at 2 million percent. Would you believe! I recall under Carter inflation caused interest rates to go to 22-23 percent. I thought that was horrible!

Trump did well with Kim in Hanoi. North Korea has begun rebuilding its missile sites.

The love affair did not last long.

Puerto Rico was screwed by Trump. He forgot they were American citizens. He failed to provide anywhere near sufficient help following Hurricane Maria.

Not the first time an American President has not treated Puerto Ricans well.

It was 1917 when then President Wilson signed the necessary legislation making the people of Puerto Rico U.S. citizens. The U.S. either had just entered World War I or was about to.

Wilson needed men to fight. The ranks of the military had to be built up and quickly. Soon after Puerto Ricans became U.S. citizens, 20,000 were drafted.

The authoritarian state is a creeping phenomenon. As it was in Germany under Hitler. Little pieces of freedom frequently taken away.

I am not a fan of ICE. I believe they are quietly being strengthened and represent Trump’s Gestapo.

ICE and Border guards are “pulling aside” reporters, attorneys and activists at the border as they are entering Mexico. They are questioned. Notes made.

Fifty nine so far. Their experiences described as having a “chilling effect.”

What next?

Trump said he was going to grow America’s industries. Doing a lousy job!

General Motors announced this week they have begun “eliminating” 1,700 hourly employees. Perhaps for good.

Yesterday’s Wall Street Journal front page right hand column carried an article titled: GE Chief Warns of Slow Recovery.

GE’s new President Larry Culp said GE needs to “pay the piper” in 2019. GE still in a turn around.

Where have the conservatives gone? Not many left. Many  Republicans think they are. However, conservative government is gone. Replaced by Trumpism.

Paul Waldman wrote an interesting opinion piece March 4. He said, “Many Republicans…..when the history of this period is written will come out looking terrible, as a bunch of cowards who made themselves handmaidens to the most corrupt President in American history.”

My Republican friends, take your party back!

Ash Wednesday was interesting.

Religion has been on a decline for years. It may be bouncing back. Such is based on my observations wednesday.

Many announcers, political pundits, etc. on TV wore their cross of ashes on their foreheads.

Wednesday evening at dinner time, I was driving past St. Mary’s By the Sea in Key West. The lines in and out of the Church were huge! People getting ashes.

Enjoy your day!

6 comments on “MORNING STEW #7

  1. Most Republicans have not been conservatives for years, decades really. Conservatives is only what they like to call themselves, because their leaders tell them to do. It is an alternative to their opponents and a way to polarize ideology. Republicans used to be a political force with their own ideas, policies and leadership. Newt Gingrich changed all that into strictly an opposition party whose only soul and purpose was to gain and retain power, not a party of ideas, policies and leadership. Conservative, nawh, that’s just a word they use because they think it sounds good, a word that keeps them from having to think and do.

  2. Perhaps a conservative would be better at describing what they believe.

    How about now, a conservative describes what a loony liberal is and what they feel and believe. Would be just as meaningless.

      • What is your definition of angry? I’m pointing out the obvious, nothing angry about it. Charles defines conservative thought and actions from a liberal viewpoint. It’s meaningless. Same as it would be if a conservative were attempting to frame a liberal mindset and intentions.

        It would be more useful to actually ask a conservative for his motivations. You might be surprised.

        • You do seem to have serious comprehension issues. Either that or you are trying to push some agenda that isn’t in the discussion. I was making the point that Republicans are actually NOT practicing conservatism, rather just calling what they’re doing as such. What they believe may be what they believe, it’s just not conservatism.

  3. There have been great job growth numbers lately. I wonder how many of those jobs one person has hold in order to earn a living?

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