Individual Responsibility

I hope I have been “honorable”. At some point, on my Twitter feed, my name will have a banner that reads “2020 US Presidential Candidate”, and then WORDS… from MY mouth! I’ve said almost 6,000 things on Twitter. I hope I have not said anything that degrades the Office I seek.

Stephen Douglas… everyone knows that name today for ONE reason- Abraham Lincoln. I realized that a couple months ago. And it is a thought that crosses my mind daily. I try, intentionally, to be OPEN with my thoughts and opinions in order to avoid coming across as ‘fake’ or ‘a troll’. As if I were speaking in real life.

IF I do self censor it is because of the platform from which I speak, knowing what I say might someday be seen as “relevant”.

A couple days ago I made a late night run to Walmart. Jess was making potato soup and needed almond milk and I needed to replace a headlight on the van. I was looking for a good reason to get out of the house, to try and take my mind off stuff.

I’ve had a lot on my mind lately.

I tossed my items in a cart, shot the breeze with a couple people while I was there, paid and headed out the door. Just as I was pushing my cart through the automatic double-doors, out of the corner of my eye to my right, a woman was throwing some trash into the can. As I walked out, she was just about to turn and start walking back to where she came from, and I anticipated…swinging my cart to the left and avoiding her walking into my cart.

She turned, just as I thought, and she saw me swing the cart to the side and stop. Now, I wasn’t going to hit her with a cart… I’m a better driver than THAT! And, even if she suddenly turned and started sprinting, I wasn’t going fast enough to where I couldn’t have just full-stopped and avoided her. I just wanted to be safe.

As we both came to a stop, I pulled the cart back slightly, and said “Excuse me. Please, go ahead.” As I said this, she turned her eyes away from the cart and made eye contact with me… Now, I am not an unpleasant looking guy. Some people might say a little more pleasant than the south side of a north bound horse, and so I’ve seen that sparkle in the eye of a few people… ladies AND gents… and sometimes, flirtatious looks can turn into a bit of flirtatious banter, all in a few seconds. Just in passing alone and nothing more.

As she looked up, startled at first from the image of some guy dodging to avoid running her over, she made eye contact with me and her expression changed. I said “Please, go ahead,” and she stepped back, stood a bit straighter, and said “No… Please, you go. I insist.” I hesitated, smiled, being flattered by her expression of insistence, nodded my head and said “Thank you,” and I walked on by.

It makes me feel good when someone slyly acknowledges someone else in that way, makes you feel kinda special… but, as I approached my van, I thought a couple more times about that look in her eye. That was NOT the look of infatuation. I am NOT that handsome! No Way!… I think she recognized me. Well, the spongebob hat at least.

If I had to guess her age, I would say 16-22. That is about the range for the MFOL crowd and I know there is strong support in the Kansas City area for what David Hogg is doing. So it could be possible. And IF that is the case… I don’t believe it! I don’t have proof of that being the case, I would only be assuming. I’m not sure though.

The look in her eyes expressed a sence of HUMILITY, of AWE, of PRIDE… of what I would express if given the chance to meet a Presidential Candidate.

So, that’s a heavy responsibility. I understood that from the beginning. That COPYRIGHT/TRADEMARK “U.S. President” idea is what gave me pause originally. How can one live up to the painting that hangs in the heart of every American Citizen? Be it a portrait of a President or a pivotal patriotic event, the IMAGE in one’s own mind is flawless, even more so than the painting itself. I felt the responsibility of the Office when I changed my Twitter bio. Little blue check mark be damned… just read the title at the top of that feed, it is a statement.

I am not shying away in this moment, I am absorbing and learning (with cat videos and funny goats in between to keep my sanity…) and planning. Mapping out what could be, how to get there, and hoping to find disparate voices, looking for common ground. Wise counsel who, watching the deprevaty in the halls of Congress, have come to their breaking point.

A rag-tag group of misfits, from a diverse range of backgrounds. All with individual specialties that can be utilized at the most opportune time against an evil villain… hell-bent on destruction…

Cue- Cliche 70s Rock Anthem

I think we can move “Through the Looking Glass” over to the Reference section now.

JC

 

 

Been there, done that.

We stand poised, on the EDGE of history. Right now, what we do will echo throughout time. Choose your words wisely…

Marching armies stand at the ready as we bicker about taking a knee. Children scream for their mothers, while ‘leaders’ are in bed with spies. Thousands have died and thousands more suffer, in the wealthiest country in the world, due to our inability to prepare for a storm.

When asked to do our duty, to god and our country, leaders point out the faults of others, to justify themselves. When criminals are made to stand for their actions, our leaders say “Well I barely knew him.” When the story is written about how our enemy penetrated our system, after LIES become known, and corruption is aired, how will they be portrayed?

How will YOU be portrayed?

NOW is that time. Here… THIS is that place. Tomorrow, when they ask “Where did you stand? What did you do?” What will you say?

How can people defend the indefensible? Why would someone believe the path to success is found by holding others back? How can leaders speak of making things better when they dehumanize our sisters? How can they promote safety for a country founded by immigrants escaping persecution, by imprisoning children seeking safety?

President James Buchanan sat and watched as State after State walked away from Our Union. He believed the secession was illegal, but he ALSO believed the fight to preserve the Union was illegal.

Our Country is drowning in a flood RIGHT NOW, but leadership points out, “The sign says ‘No Swimming’.”

History is replete with stories of ‘blind ignorance’. The smokestacks billowed while neighboring towns claimed they had no idea. The memo said terrorist determined to strike in America, yet no one could have anticipated an airplane being used like that. 5000 people died because NO ONE could foresee a tropical island nation being devastated by a hurricane.

And NOW, a mother screams “Where is my baby?” and the response is Make America Great Again. Young Black men are shot dead by a man with badge, and the response is All Lives Matter. High school children go to school in fear of another mass shooting, and all we hear is “We should not act while emotions are so raw.”

BULLSHIT! NOW is the time for action. BEFORE the shots are fired, BEFORE another Kent State Massacre, BEFORE the marching in the street becomes mourning in the sanctuary. BEFORE we are forced to take whatever ‘they’ wanna give us… then cast us aside with all the ‘others’ they have forced before.

Heed the warnings of thousands of lost souls… “THIS FAR AND NO FARTHER!!” We know how this story plays out, we have seen this tired plot. The story ends exactly how it has before- GOOD TRIUMPHS OVER EVIL…  every time! We do not need to watch this movie again, WE can fast forward to the good part.

We have paid for that shared history in blood. We treasure the unity we have gained in shared loss. We’ve strived, for a full century, to achieve lasting peace in unity, sharing the fruits of our grandparents’ legislative and diplomatic accomplishments. And now, some question if all of that was in vein.

We CAN learn that lesson again… OR we can honor their memories in the way they would have wanted us to-

By standing FIRM and defending the Rights of ALL who wish to live free. By being the example that lights the way for others to follow. By showing strength, and heeding the call of wisdom, to speak truth to power, to ensure true evil is never allowed to flourish again.

JC

Come into the Light and Speak

Silence is the tool of the ‘bad actor’. Silence plants the seed of doubt among those of common ground. Silence sets the stage for an agenda of fear and hate. Silence leads to suspicion and creates the illusion of trust.

“Speak now or forever hold your peace.” Silence condemns people to servitude. Silence breeds corruption… No questions asked! Silence can break a heart, and no one would ever know.

Silence in the face of a bad actor leads to the downfall of Kings. Silence due to inaction sows regret and self doubt. Silence suggests support where there is none. Silence creates support where normally it would not have been.

If you are quiet, you’ll hear the silence is deafening. And the loudest among us usually has the least to say. Evil triumphs when good men are silent. And good men who stay silent are truly on the side of evil men.

In the light, that is where the Bad Actor shines brightest!

Keep your head UP!!

JC

The “Tipping Point”

THIS is the sound… that has held a thousand people down and kicked a person at their lowest. The person who stole your lunch money, the person who forced you to do it, the person who says ‘Toots’ or ‘Broad’, just sos you know ‘your place’.

THIS is the sound that WE hear, when SILENCE is ACCEPTABLE.

SILENCE is NEVER acceptable. Because good people CANNOT hear you and try to make things RIGHT. And that’s how they win- because it is a ‘game of inches’. Numbers, “one here and one there…”, “those we can afford to lose, but the others will come to vote in DROVES!!” Drooling over votes and horse trading the numbers all the way to the BANK. If it’s voting in elections or sitting at a table in school. The minority have control over those they can control through fear, intimidation, and SILENCE.

And now we can HEAR that sound, and we can start to UNDERSTAND whom this is done UPON… better.

Empathy. Because Good People do not understand that it is possible for this shit to happen. And it DOES HAPPEN everyday. We must make a change, “not just for myself, but for others as well.”

The idea of a “Tipping Point” has been reached. Once %10 of the People know an idea or thought to be true, the next %90 of people will gain that knowledge within a fraction of the time it took %10 to get there. This sound is CLARITY. This sound is HORRIFYING. And this sound MUST END. Everyone must HEAR this sound.

keep your head up.

JC

Doing the Same Things, Expecting Different Results

“You’ve never run a company, OR been in government.”

To be honest, an inexperienced leader is NOT a GOOD THING! Look at Our Current situation. I doubt the voters will allow such a ‘noob’ take the reigns of Our country again. Consider this- Can the president do anything alone in DC? It is not the President alone who does the hard work of legislating. It is NOT the President alone who will shake hands with our partners around the world. It is not the President alone who champions issues to be legislated.

The People direct the process. What issues are we wanting to focus on? Who best visualizes the solution to the issues at hand? If the People are wanting to avoid war, we vote for the person who’s record shows support for peace. Even specific issues have different solutions, some better than others. But, no matter what the President thinks is the best solution, the Congress must work to support the President and create solutions.

Werner von Braun would not have been able to fly himself to the Moon.

FDR would NOT have been able to defeat Hitler in a fist fight.

Our government is an amazing creature! As we are all seeing today, it can run itself without any assistance. Accountability offices, oversight and regulation advisors, deputy positions, assistant deputies, and lawyers advising them, in the interest of the People’s Government (NOT on the interests of individuals in the government, which is pretty cool) all ensure that we have a government that, at the VERY least, is not working to harm citizens. At a minimum it is helping to protect us.

When it’s at its VERY BEST….? When Our Government comes to the table to play ball and get stuff accomplished, we can move the World! We can loosen any bondage. We can protect Liberty. We can put a MAN ON THE MOON. And EVERYDAY we enjoy the fruits of past labor, from the Interstate System, to the Jazz on Bourbon Street.

Our government can do great things, but ONLY when our VERY BEST people are leading us.

“…I believe that this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to the earth.” JFK to Congress, 1961.

(Read transcript here- https://www.nasa.gov/vision/space/features/jfk_speech_text.html)

The most able leader in the world could not lead this country without vision. Without an ability to see what will be, and how to achieve that end. Not just the micro management of minute details, not just the ability to hire and fire. Anyone can do these things in a successful manor. The focus should be “What can you accomplish?” What is the limit to your vision? Where do you want to take us? How high should we be aiming? Who’s got our back if we slip and fall? And who’s gonna lend a hand, lift us up, and slap our back, encouraging us to try again?

“Not because it is easy, but because it is HARD.”

Our Country finds itself in a position of societal upheaval at this moment. An awakening of the spirit of our shared interests. Our common needs. Our common desires. We believe in the idea of our better angels, but are discouraged when all we see are the details of devils. Positive intentions are nothing without positive actions. A group of positive actions leads to movement of our overall societal evolution. Growing pains can be unbearable! Trust me, I’m 6’4″!

But they are necessary. We all want to be the better angels we imagine. We must avoid believing we ARE the better angles, in order to hide the painful truth. We have walked down all the paths before. We have tried the left, we have tried the right. We tried the exciting leader, we tried the even-keeled leader. They have all led us to THIS MOMENT. Every right and every wrong has shaped the people we are today. Every misstep, every yard gained. Every broken heart and every burden lifted. We must own that now. Today is how it is because of the choices that were made.

If we take actions using choices already made, we will be back in the SAME SPOT AS TODAY.

Who we choose to be, tomorrow, begins with how we see ourselves TODAY. Are we leading or following directions? Are we in control of our densities, or is that only an illusion? VISION is a powerful creative tool. It can be wielded to destroy civilizations, or produce the cotton gin. It can free slaves, or create slaves of the free. If we want things to get better, we must “see” it happen. To make that vision a reality, we must unite and support each other. For the common good. For us ALL.

THAT is where real power comes from- leadership born of the People who benefit the most. If you haven’t lived it, then you cannot change it.

That’s how I see it. Keep your head UP!!

JC

Leadership

I have to teach my 12 year old son about leadership. This will be either a good conversation, or a head butting contest. Knowing my son…

He is playing Fortnite: Battle Royale and has becomes focused on the win. He has developed decent leadership skills, but is becoming a bit overbearing. He seems too focused on the win. I’ve got to figure how to tell him to focus on “the assist” as hard as he does “the win”.

Now, I’m NOT a military strategist. I AM an Eagle Scout. And I have been part of successful teams. The biggest lesson I have learned from that experience:

Don’t go into business with family or friends. It will destroy that relationship. Every time.

I would say, being from Kansas, in recent years our State has been home to quite a few good leaders. The one that I gained the most from watching was Roy Williams, coach of the KU Jayhawks. His strategy was quite simple: fundamentals, deep bench, every one touches the ball before it goes in, everyone wins. When everyone’s talent is being utilized to its fullest potential, no one can stop you. Focus hard on getting the ball into the RIGHT person’s hands at the RIGHT time, and it’s bank! Nothin’ but net.

So, it went well. He is very perceptive and open to criticism. Unlike me, when I was his age (or like his little brother… grrrr… he and I are too much alike) I was stubborn and wouldn’t listen to sound advice. Or, I would think I knew better and do as I thought best.

I can’t tell you how many times I have said in the back of my mind “Damn, Dad. Why didn’t I listen?” I know someday that will be the case with my kids. I guess that’s how it goes.

Keep your head UP!!

JC