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Attachment-1-1166

Source: Vanity Fair

Source: This piece was originally posted at The Daily Review

Looking back at it now twenty years later (think about that for a second) the difference between the 1960s especially the early 1960s with President John F. Kennedy and the 1990s with President William J. Clinton, has to do with the internet age and media culture. The personal scandals that Bill Clinton was involved both real and fake in the 1980s and 1990s, aren’t that different in seriousness from the real scandals that President John Kennedy was involved with in the early 1960s.

President Clinton, had a short-term affair with a White House intern. President Kennedy, had affairs with mob girlfriends, women who were still involved with their mobster boyfriends and would then tell those men about their involvement with President Kennedy. Judith Campbell was one of President Kennedy’s White House girlfriends. She was Italian mobster’s Sam Giacana’s girlfriend as well. Bill Clinton while as Governor of Arkansas in the 1970s and 1980s, had an extra marital affair with former model and now writer Gennifer Flowers. Jack Kennedy when he was Senator Kennedy in the 1950s and after he married his wife Jackie, had multiple affairs with multiple women, which continued while he was President in the early 1960s.

So what’s the difference between the affairs that Jack Kennedy had in the 1960s and the affairs that Governor and later President Bill Clinton had in the 1980s and 1990s? Only one difference really which is the media.

If you wanted to watch TV back in lets say 1963, you had three channels to choose from. In some big markets maybe there would be an independent station that wasn’t affiliated with CBS, NBC, or ABC. PBS didn’t even come around until the late 1960s. Forget about satellite, there wasn’t even cable. You wanted to read a newspaper of magazine, you had to subscribe to one and it would be mailed to you physically, not electronically and you would probably get it once a week. Same thing with a newspaper but it would be sent to you everyday. Or I guess you could actually leave the cocoon of your house and get some fresh air and go down to your local convenient store and pick up a magazine or newspaper.

You could also get news on the radio and have serval choices there. Cable TV and satellite, didn’t come around until the mid 1970s. And probably wasn’t universal until the mid or late 1980s. The internet, what the hell is that back in 1963. That didn’t come around until the early 1990s and wasn’t mainstream until 1995. Smartphones unless you include Blackberrys, have only been around since 2007.

My point here is (and yes I have a point) is the Monica Lewinsky-Bill Clinton affair of the mid and late 1990s, was not new at least as far as how serious it was. Yes, both people especially President Bill Clinton who is old enough to be Monica’s father and of course was married, but then the fact that he’s President of the United States having a White House affair with a 20 somethingWhite House intern, showed horrible judgment here and have been paying a price for it ever since. The difference being is that we knew about everything that Bill Clinton was involved with by late 1991 and certainly into 1992 and for his whole presidency, because of new technology and the information age.

No longer just network news, radio, and the newspapers. Not just 24 hour news networks, but online publications (that we call blogs today) Americans simply having the ability to find out everything that they wanted to find out whenever they wanted to by only having a laptop or desktop, or a smartphone. As well as a new media culture that instead is run by lets gets the truth before we put it out, even if that takes longer, is now about having to get something out there before their competitors do, or it will cost them money. Especially ratings and advertising. Not sure that attitude has dominated network news as much as cable news and online publications, but others probably know that better than me.

Not saying the Clinton-Lewinsky affair wasn’t serious and shouldn’t have been paid attention to. How serious it was and what should’ve been the consequences for it, are really up to the people involved especially the people who were directly hurt by it. Most notably Bill Clinton’t wife and daughter. And to a certain extent President Clinton and Monica Lewinsky herself. Not by some religious cult thats from the 1950s and got caught in some Star Trek time warp and suddenly finding themselves living in the 1990s and deciding that since they’re now in the 90s that they’re going to not only bring their lifestyle and culture with them, but try to force every other American to live like them. And of course I’m referring to the Clinton haters that Hillary Clinton correctly labeled the vast right-wing conspiracy.

My point is what happened between Bill and Monica, is not much more serious and consequential if at all to the political and sexual affairs of the 1960s. What made Bill and Monica and different is the time and technology in which their affair happened.

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Attachment-1-959

Source: Vanity Affair

Source: This piece was originally posted at The Daily Review

To talk about Generation X (my generation born in 1975) it depends on how you define it. To put it simply we’re the generation that is now in our forties and fifties. The middle adult generation between the Boomers and the Millennial’s. Officially Baby Boomers are Americans born between 1946-64. So after World War II and during the civi rights movement of the mid 1960s. And I’m sure the U.S. Census Bureau does a lot of things very well, but defining generations is not really one of them. And as most Americans (who aren’t a Socialist) know government can get things wrong in this country.

Another way to look at Generation X are the people who went to school and grew up in post-segregated America. If you want to know why so many Americans are both color and race blind is because so many of us (Gen-Xers) went to public schools that were racially and ethnically diverse. So we went to school before we knew what race and ethnicity was. And got to see people as they were as people and not just how they looked. Why they had a certain complexion, why there hair looked a certain way, why they had certain names. Things that come with one’s ethnicity and race.

Which is why affirmative action has been losing support with my generation and in America broadly, because a lot of us now simply don’t judge Americans by their race or ethnicity and therefor don’t believe people should be rewarded or punished simply because of their race or ethnicity. I believe the more accurate way to define Generation X is Americans born between 1960 or 61 and 1979. And I believe a lot of Americans born in the early 1960s would agree with this since they have plenty in common as far as their own personal experiences with Americans born in the mid and late 1960s and even early 1970s, is Americans born between 1960 or 61, and 1979. Than they do with Boomer Americans born in the 1940s and 1950s and even in some cases late 1950s.

So everyone born in 1979 would be the last of the Gen-Xers. Which is what I’ll be talking about in this piece is Americans born in the 1960s and 1970s that are right between the two largest generations in at least modern American history. The Baby Boomers born in the 1940s and 1950s that are the parents of most Gen-Xers. And the Millennial’s born in the 1980s and 1990s who are the children of some Gen-Xers and a lot of Boomers. Even if you stretch out Generation X to let’s say 1961 or even 1960 to 1979, we’re still a small generation. Like North Korea surrounded by China and Russia.

Because a lot of Boomers especially men were vacationing in Vietnam in the 1960s (ha, ha) and the the economy was so depressing in the 1970s that a lot of Boomers weren’t having kids. They were too busy crying about the Vietnam War and the fact they couldn’t find a job, or at least a good job. But that is really for a different topic as far as why my generation is so damn small and we have to look up to the Boomers and Millennial’s as far as numbers.

The main reason why I still have some hope for America even with the oversensitive Millennial’s who can’t take a joke and want to outlaw everything they disagree with and view celebrity culture and new technology as need to know information and current affairs and public policy back page and unimportant, because it requires thinking and intelligence to understand, and history as so old school and yesterday and therefor not worth learning about and being interested in, is because what I laid out early in this article. Gen-Xers are the first post-segregation generation.

If you’re a Boomer or older chances are you went to a segregated school, especially if you grew up in the South or even rural small towns in the North. And therefor didn’t get to or have to socialize and learn with kids of different racial or ethnic backgrounds as yourself, until you probably graduated high school. And then maybe even in college you didn’t go to school with people of other racial and ethnic backgrounds. Unless you were an African-American who is in college on let’s say a scholarship. That is not a problem that most Gen-Xers had and the same thing for the Millennial’s.

So Gen-Xers have got to experience America at it’s best and what we’re supposed to be as this great vast liberal democracy where everyone can succeed if they’re simply just given the opportunity to and then take advantage of those opportunities. Regardless of their ethnicity, race, or gender. And we’ve gotten to learn about America at it’s worst and to some extent experience racial and ethnic bigotry ourselves, especially racial and ethnic minorities, but in most cases not to the same extent as our parents and grandparents.

We know what works about America which is our ability to be individuals and at the same time celebrate what we all share and love about America. Which is the ability for us to be ourselves and not have to fall in line and be some big collection of Americans that all think, talk and act alike. And we know what doesn’t which is denying Americans opportunity and access simply because of their racial or ethnic backgrounds, or their gender. And trying to lump groups of Americans into one group and think they must all think, talk, and act a certain way, because of the group that they’re a member of.

Another reason why I have hope for America is Generation X in most cases are the sons and daughters of the Baby Boomers. We’ve learned from them about individuality and learned from the so-called Me Generation and that Americans are better off being themselves and taking care of themselves. That we’re only as useful and can help others when we’re doing well ourselves. Which is why I believe Gen-X is an educated generation and successful generation.

We’ve gotten ourselves the tools to do well in America and then have passed our wealth and knowledge down to others and have become a large volunteering generation. And enjoy volunteering for others and helping people out, because we’ve made it in America in most cases. And aren’t drowning in student debt (unlike another generation) and are able to take care of ourselves for the most part. (Unlike another generation)

The last reason why I believe America still has hope and will still be a great country 20 years from now when I’m in my early 60s (knock on wood) is because Generation X is the middle generation. We’re in our 40s and 50s and just had our first President in Barack Obama. (Born in 1961) We’re going to be around and in charge for a long time. And because of that will have the ability to lead and teach others what we’ve know and have experienced.

And hopefully the Millennial’s will grow up and learn that just because they don’t like a joke or criticism, doesn’t necessarily make that joke and criticism bigoted.

Hopefully Millennial’s will learn that just because they don’t approve of this activity or another like what people eat and drink like soft drinks and junk food, or meat because they view eating meat as animal cruelty, doesn’t mean those things are so bad that government should prohibit them.

Hopefully Millennial’s will learn that just because celebrity culture and new technology or are so like totally awesome or whatever, that maybe those things really aren’t as important as how government is spending our tax dollars, or are we going to be at war, or are our civil rights, civil liberties, and constitutional rights, are now in jeopardy, because of some big government action or actions.

These are the reasons why I still have hope for America and my Generation X is a big part of that.

Attachment-1-960

Source: National Geographic- NBC Nightly News With Jane Pauley

National Geographic: NBC Nightly News With Jane Pauley- Birth of The Slacker

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Black Friday

Source: The Richest: The Worst Black Friday Disasters

Black Friday, the official start of the Christmas shopping season in America and as someone who has some experience working in retail I know how crazy it can be. It is that one day of the year where Americans can go crazy and not look crazy, because they must have whatever the current OMG product is out there. Generally having something to do with new technology. And if they don’t get that product, they’ll look like so old school, or 2014 or whatever the year is compared with people who already have that new smart phone, iPad, or whatever the hell it is. It is that one day of the year that people find great deals on stuff that they don’t need and buy it. To wake up the next day to figure out they don’t want or need whatever the thing is that they just found a great deal on. And besides, what they just bought is already old school compared with whatever the latest thing is.

It is that day of the year where people can camp out the night before so they’re in at Best Buy, Macy’s, or whatever the store is, the second it opens and be able to buy whatever they think they’re looking for at that second, to find out they don’t want it, or need it when they get home. Or perhaps its a present and they think to them self, “why would this person want this.” Black Friday, is 21st Century pop and valley culture gone wild, where everyone has that one day to be more like whatever their favorite current celebrity is until they find a new one the next day. Despite all the stupidity that comes from Black Friday with all the faddism that comes from it, as someone smart once said and I’m paraphrasing, but that idiots are useful. Black Friday, puts money in people’s wallets, saves people money if they spend their money wisely on stuff they can actually use and need and it also creates a lot of jobs. Things that we still need a lot of as a country.

For Social Justice Warriors, (speaking of useful idiots) Black Friday is not a racist holiday. It is not some racial slur at African-Americans and anyone else of African descent. It is also not some day that promotes economic greed and the weakness’ of private enterprise, capitalism and corporate greed. It is a great use to the American economy, because it creates jobs and keeps business’s successful. It puts money in average Americans wallets and saves money for a lot of Americans who spend the day wisely. Yes, private business’s end up doing very well on this day, but that’s called private enterprise and capitalism. And workers and consumers don’t do well when business’s don’t do well. These things go together. And someone not a fan of this system should explain what they would do differently. Perhaps try to find some state-run business that has real competition that does well on Black Friday. Or Rainbow Friday, or whatever the politically correct term would be for it.

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Thanksgiving

Source: Julie Partney: Thanksgiving- A Politically Incorrect Guide

To start off on a positive note before I send everyone to back the Great Depression. Actually, it won’t be that bad, but I just want to say Happy Thanksgiving to everyone who doesn’t view this great American holiday as a racist holiday. For the rest of you, please seek help and perhaps smoke a joint and learn to relax. But to the Social Justice Warriors, Canada which many Progressives or Social Democrats celebrate as some great utopian social democratic utopia, celebrates Thanksgiving. So who are the racists now? America, or Canada, perhaps both in a Social Justice Warrior’s peanut-sized brain. Thanksgiving, is not about celebrating the Europeans victory over the Indians. But celebrating what we all have to be thankful for.

Thanksgiving, is really one of those handful of holidays that we have in America where families get together and drive each other crazy. Leaving people to remember why they haven’t seen their uncle in a whole year. Perhaps brother, sister, aunt, in-laws, parents even. As well as to remember how thankful they are to have relatives that will drive them crazy. Not to get drunk and celebrate European victory over the Indians. This is a great holiday a day when Americans can feel proud to eat, drink, watch football all day, not bother to exercise. Not a day to celebrate the fact that Europeans conquered America and left the Indians to live on reservations. By the way, American-Indians are free to live with other Americans in America. European and otherwise.

Thanksgiving, is that great American holiday that actually brings Americans together in a very divided country. Where people who believe Barack Obama is destroying America, break bread with people who believe minorities are entitled not to be offended. People who believe that ObamaCare, or the Affordable Care Act its supporters such as myself, is a Marxist government takeover of the health care system, can break bread with people who believe the ACA is a good thing and will make the American health care system look like Germany. Where you have to cover your own health care costs, but get to choose how you pay for it with a market of different health insurers. This is not a holiday to jump into an American-Indian’s face and say, “ha! We won and you lost!” If there is one holiday that should unite all Americans that everyone can take one day off and just relax and enjoy themselves and give thanks, its Thanksgiving.

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This post was originally posted at FRS Daily Times on Blogger

As a straight man I’m obviously not the most qualified person to speak about homosexuality and what homosexuals go through in America or anywhere else around the world. But I am qualified to speak about what I see as far as the bigotry that’s thrown at homosexuals as a Liberal, as a blogger and as someone who is friends with gay people and someone whose worked with Gay people as well. Plus the bigotry that I’ve seen and read get thrown at gays just because they are gay and who they are attracted to.

And how gays carry themselves. Which is what I’m going to do in this blog, and not trying to speak as an expert on homosexuality which I’m clearly not. Just like a gay person wouldn’t be an expert on heterosexuality because of simple fact they aren’t straight and they do not know what it’s like to be straight. And bisexuals may be the only people who could possibly be qualified to be experts on both homosexuality and heterosexuality because they’ve lived the life as both at least to a certain extent.

As a Liberal I actually do believe in the old fashion conservative notion of personal responsibility. That we must be held accountable for our actions for good and bad. Fine I agree with that, but I’m going to give homophobes a pass when it comes to their homophobia just for this reason. Because and I don’t know this as a fact, but if I had to guess the overwhelming majority of homophobes didn’t decide that they are against homosexuality. Or the way they would put it, they do not agree with homosexuality. When they turned eighteen or twenty-one.

That its something that was already part of homophobes lives much longer before those two very important birthdays. And that since a lot of their homophobia if not all of it comes from a religious vantage point and they grow up in strict religious households or communities, that a lot of their homophobia comes to them when they are in church or from their families. That’s one theory and the other one coming from lets say lack of exposure to gay people and not being friends with those people and not having a good idea what its like to be around gay people.

This might sound like a fantasy or something, but I bet if you took the one-hundred of the most bigoted homophobes who didn’t have violent or murderous tendencies, that their homophobia was purely verbal and how they think rather than how they act and you had them live in a community of homosexuals for let’s say a week or a month or even longer than that, the Homophobes views of homosexuals would change drastically. Because they would see that gay people are people almost just like them, but attracted to the other gender and perhaps a little more feminine or masculine. To play off of a gay stereotype.

And that hay people perhaps have different interests, but that they would find things to agree on as well. And even talk about that and homophobia like all other forms of bigotry are based on simple ignorance. Having strong feelings about something that you simply don’t know much about which of course is dangerous. I really believe this because just look at the last ten years where back in 2003-04 gay-marriage was seen as a fringe issue. Now at least half of Americans are in favor of gay-marriage.

But even ten years ago when gay-marriage was unpopular the idea of civil unions seemed mainstream and an appropriate alternative. So we’ve made a lot of progress in just ten years. Which gets to my point that the more people know about something and see that it’s not dangerous and certainly not a threat to you, the harder it is to hate that thing. And more Americans are simply learning more about homosexuality and knowing gay people and seeing that these people are good people by in large just like straights.
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Attachment-1-630

Source: Robin Smith- CBS News Correspondent Mike Wallace

Source: This piece was originally posted at FRS Daily Times 

I laugh every time I hear people call Hugh Hefner a radical or an extremist or immoral doing the work for the Devil. Whatever it might be because Hugh Hefner represents what an overwhelming majority of Americans say they are in favor of. And what the Far-Right and Far-Left in America are against which is individual freedom. The right of Americans to be able to live their own lives and not be dictated to by government or collectivists. Who believe they know better than Americans how Americans should live their own lives.

What makes Hef different from most Americans who believe in individual-freedom is that Hef is honest and public about his feelings as they relate to sex and how men feel about women and vice-versa and the role of both in society and so-forth. Where many other Americans who believe in the same things as Hef economic freedom balanced with personal freedom including sexual freedom, tolerance and against statism. And the political correctness police, but are not as public with their beliefs.

Hugh Hefer is not some type of Socialist radical looking to bring down corporate America and make the whole country dependent on the state for their well-being. But he’s also not some type of theocrat looking to ban all social activities that he doesn’t approve of. He represents where the mainstream of America is instead. And is very successful in corporate America himself fighting for. And promoting what he’s always been both which is individualfreedom.

As well economic freedom balanced with personal freedom. Which is how he’s united the Far-Left and Far-Right against him and in some cases for the same reasons with how his magazine talks about and promotes sex in America. Sharing his thoughts as well as his writers thoughts. But also how many other Americans feel, but who tend not to be as public about those feelings. Hugh Hefner is not saying you must live like him and this is the American way of life. What he’s saying is this is how he lives and is the life for him. And that every other American has the right to make these decisions for themselves.

Robin Smith: Hugh Hefner- Playboy, Activist & Rebel

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The 1940s
This post was originally posted at The New Democrat

Aw shucks, if I could only go back to the innocent 1940s again. That golly swell innocent time post World War II, well a great time for anyone who didn’t happen to be African-American and perhaps female as well regardless of race. The problem with me being alive back then, would be that I would now be in my mid-60s right now and not having much of an opportunity to live through a lot of the 21st Century which I hope to do. But the 1940s was a good time for some Americans, at least post World War II.

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