Wednesday, December 31, 2014
Posted by A.R. Cruz at 6:10 PM
Thursday, November 6, 2014
Republicans are happy because they have the power that they have craved for so long. The 2014 Democratic electorate voted for more gridlock and disfunction in government; by electing to stay home and not vote. This 2014 election was a midterm election which is historically bad for Democrats since many vote only during the presidential elections. Another very important factor in the Republicans victory was that most of the senate seats that were up for re-election were mainly in red states; all of these states that elected Republicans went for Romney in 2012, so most of these voters never supported Obama or the Democrats policies. There were three blue states that the Senate and governorships went Republican due to lack of Democratic voter turnout, and the Democratic party taking for granted electorate of these states of being historically Democratic. Republicans had a lot of dark money in these elections to get the message out to the older white electorate that normally votes on midterm elections in all states.
Republicans are telling the American public that this election was a message to President Obama and the Democrats that they reject their policies when that can be further from the truth. Republicans won because they had unfair advantage of Senate seats being up for election in red Republican states, first. One point important to highlight is that on the ballot in four red states; Alaska, Arkansas, Nebraska and South Dakota they had the option to vote for higher minimum wage and it passed by 80% and higher in these Ruby red states. Arkansas minimum wage increase will be 8.50 an hour by 2017 and Alaska will increase to 9.75 by 2016. San Francisco will increase to 15.00 an hour by 2018. 609,000 low wage Americans in these states will see wage increase. Wisconsin and Illinois passed ballot nonbinding initiative to increase wage minimum to 10.00 an hour, based on passage in state legislature, if passed 1.1 million low income workers will see a raise. 29 states will exceed and increase the 7.25 minimum wage. Washington DC , Alaska, and Oregon voted for legalization of recreational marijuana, florida fell 3% short of the needed 60% threshold to pass medical marijuana use. 30 states have liberalized their marijuana laws. Criminal Justice reform passed in California to shorthen prison senences for inmates on drug offenses, and petty nonviolent crimes. Personhood amendment failed in North dakota and Colorado by 58% overwhelmingly rejecting Republican policies. Gun control advocates won on initiative 594 by 60% that requires background criminal and mental health checks on gun buyers in Washington state. The NRA tried on the same ballot tried to block background checks with initiative 591 and the NRA was defeated by 55%. In Florida and in New Jersey ballot initiatives passed to allocate funds for the protection of lands and parks. 13 billion in funds for land conservation in states and cities. These policies are the Democratic Party and President Obama's policies so for Boehner and McConnell to cynically come out and state that the voters reject President Obama's policies are FALSE. What the voters in these ex-confederate Red states rejected was President Obama not his policies as demonstrated by their own votes on the ballot box.
The media has chosen to focus the election results as a rejection of the President and his policies as for the reason of the Republican sweep. The media did not focus on the results of the passage of many of the ballot initiatives that were the Democratic parties policies and the issues that President Obama had promoted. Why did the ballot initiatives pass in RED REPUBLICAN STATES that are President Obama's and the Democratic parties liberal issues; and at the same time the voters rejected Obama and the Democrats. There is only conclusion, the voters did not reject the president's policies and issues, what they rejected was President Obama, personally. This president has been demonized by the republican party and the media especiallyby the recent coverage on ebola and ISIS. The media was blaming the administration for the poor performance on handling these issues; at one point I thought Andrea Mitchell on MSNBC was blaming Obama for ebola coming to the US. The media has soured on President Obama because of the lack of access given to the White house press to the President and not being able to get access to certain documents which the press believes should be public. On every issue there have been media pundits that have constantly questioned the leadership and character of this President. The constant criticism and manipulation of media reporting and under reporting many of Obama's successes; the american public believes that Obama must be a horrible president.
The american public cares about how their lives will improve, in 2012, after Romney made that 47% comment. Americans re-elected Obama because they saw the alternative as being the worst choice of the two. The american public has not given credit to Obama for the growing economy, nor obama care. 57% of Americans believe obama care should be kept; but the 2014 election will allow for the possibility of the repeal or the destruction of obama care. Elections have consequences and the electorate will learn this quickly as Republicans will continue their strategy of obstruction to affect the next 2016 election, Senator Rand Paul already attacked Hillary Clinton who hasn't announced if she will run for the presidency.
The Democratic party and many of their politicians demoralized their own base by many of their candidates running away from President Obama and his policies. Candidates like Alison Lungden Grimes would not invite President Obama to campaign for her; only allowing the Clintons to campaign. In her attempt to show that she wasn't tied to President Obama, she alienated black and minority voters in her state. The approach of these candidates trying to capture the white vote in states that are historically Republican and where racial attitudes make it impossible for voters to support a black President; their strategy was wrong. The reason why red states are Republican are that the local state government does nothing for its minority constituents; so historically blacks and hispanics do not vote in State or local elections since there are no good policies that do not contribute to higher quality of life for these constituents. The people in these red Republican states have been demoralized because of the extreme poverty they live in and has no good expectations of their local government; in fact many of these red states have attempted to pass laws to make voting harder for minorities, students, and woman; such as North Carolina. Republican states in the South are the poorest in the US per income; many of these people have no health care, and Tennessee has the highest Obesity rate in the US.
In the state of North Carolina, there are 850,000 unregistered black voters and about 300,000 unregistered latino voters. If the democrats concentrate efforts on getting out the message of how important it is for these voters to register to vote in all elections not only the presidential. If the democrats begin a campaign beginning NOW to change the mindsets of the electorate that voting only in the presidentials are not enough,that midterms are important too. The democratic party has to demonstrate to their voters that their lack of voter participation during these mid-term elections determines many local state, Senate and congressional seats that determine if democratic policies will pass to fix the important issues that need attention domestically.
Another important issue that Democrats need to address is to counter effective monopolized Republican messaging; Democratic policies are better for the lower, middle, working class families in the US. The Republican party has been effective in using tactics that misrepresent democratic party policies and ideals; such as misinformation, distortions, and personal attacks on the character of this president and the democratic party. The republican party has a strong conservative talk radio monopoly that has brainwashed many Americans to mistrust and hate government. In addition, to the Republican Party having control over Congress these past four years that President Obama has been in office has stopped all of his cabinet appointments, ambassador appointments, all bills and policies that President Obama tried to pass were stopped cold. Republicans were rewarded this 2014 election for using a strategy of making government fail so that Obama would be blamed for slow economy. Although, the US economy is growing, there have been 23 million new jobs created, GDP is 3.6%, health care costs are lowering for the first time in 50 years because of Obama care. The voters do not support or give credit to this President for the successes; he has accomplished.
The 2014 electorate says they want government to work and the two parties to work together. The election was November 4th and on November 6th; the Republican house leader Boehner comes out in a news conference and dares the President to pass immigration reform by executive order oh, and by the way we will repeal obama care. Boehner says he is doing what the American public wants by repealing obama care when the latest poll states that 57% of americans do Not want Obama care repealed. Boehner is doing the bidding of insurance companies, not the people. The American electorate voted for more gridlock because the Republicans will continue their successful strategy of obstruction and sabotage so that the Democrats will be blamed in 2016. Since their obstruction has worked to place them in the position of power I doubt that there will be any serious effort to work with Obama on any issues to help the middle class.
Republican voters vote against their own interest because of party loyalty, social issues, one issue that identifies with certain voters, an example, gun rights. Some Republican voters cast their votes as a form of support of anti-government sentiment that the South has against the federal government. After all, the south lost the civil war because they wanted to keep the immoral business of slavery and wanted to expand it to the other regions of country since escaped slaves went to northern states. The South hates the federal government because of their losses in the civil war and of their profitable slave industry. During the 1960's the civil rights law passed by the Democrats in Congress and the Senate. Before the 1960's the South was a solid Democratic strong hold; whites were Democrats. Blacks voted historically Republican before 1964 because of Lincoln's emancipation proclamation that freed slaves in all of the US. There was a time that the Republicans,actually passed good common sense equatiable laws; the party of Lincoln made policy that freed blacks from the horrible immoral industry of slavery in the South.
The message that the democratic party should take from this election is that passing common sense laws that protect and help the lower, working, and middle class is not enough. The first message that the democrats have to contradict and explain against the current media narrative is that this 2014 election was not a rebuke of democratic policies because even in red states democratic policies passed overwhelmingly. These red states voted in republican politicians that were against the very same ballot initiatives passed. The democrats have to start effective messaging beginning NOW, start online media campaign and print media to minority communities explaining the importance of voting in all elections and how midterms determine the legislative body of the government. Finally, Democrats have to fight fire with fire, fight constant Republican misinformation by explaining what the democratic party stands for; what the party has done so far and how it has improved many issues that were declining in 2008. The democratic candidates have to become passionate advocates for their party and for their President. The idea of distancing of the Democratic candidate from the current Democratic President in red states in hopes that an older confederate state white voter will vote on policies and issues on rather than the race of the current President is a delusion. The idea of flipping red states to blue is possible by concentrating on registering minority communities in these states to register and to vote in these red states in hopes of changing the bad policies that do not represent their communities. The american electorate has 2 second attention spans that unfortunately does not allow for voters to really know what their representative stands for and make good choices. Democrats have to play hardball during elections, the same as Republicans do; by correcting misinformation and not running away from their democratic ideals. Conservative talk radio monoply should be challenged by democratic ideals being placed on social media and other free media to counter that of talk radio conservative monopoly that has brainwashed Americans.
Posted by A.R. Cruz at 10:47 PM
Labels: democratic policies win on ballot in red states that voted in republicans that oppose those policies.
Wednesday, November 5, 2014
Happy and estatic about upcoming wedding, my sister is marrying a nice guy. Some photos of areas in Bronx and yonkers area in NYC.
Posted by A.R. Cruz at 4:37 PM
This is my article on how american voters rewarded the obstructionist party for sabotaging the presidency and the democratic party by purposely not doing nothing for four years. I think this article is a reflection of the american voter, we say we want a good economy, job creation, and a good direction for the country, yet we reward Republicans who have purposely made sure Congress did not function. Incredible. Now that the Republicans have the House and Senate, they will take credit for the economy and at the same attempt to pass the same old Reagan 1980s economic model and undo all of the growth. Speaker Ted Cruz will take over for Mitch McConnell and Boehner to create some bogus charge to impeach Obama. Two years of nothing being done and blaming the president for it; that is what this mid term election has fostered. Kentuckians voted for a man they hate and who will remove Konnect health insurance, but that is what the voters in Kentucky voted for because they hate Obama. Personally, Kentucky voters voted in the Republican politicians they deserve. Just as for North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Colorado, and other Southern/Midwest states.
Posted by A.R. Cruz at 1:04 AM
Wednesday, October 1, 2014
Posted by A.R. Cruz at 11:11 AM
Just one of the great treasures of Ocala Florida, a must see!
Posted by A.R. Cruz at 11:03 AM
Posted by A.R. Cruz at 10:57 AM
Wednesday, September 24, 2014
Many voters think that voting in the presidential elections are enough; American voters don't realize that the President does not have sole power in legislating. Congress and the Senate share power with the President creating a checks and balance system to make sure no one branch of government becomes too powerful.
Voters that are engaged in politics vote during the mid terms, because they know that they can nullify the presidential election results.
The Tea Party has been very successful in achieving power in Congress because of their few loud vocal extremist voices in Conservative GOP party. This small extreme group of the Republican Party has taken over the GOP; by controlling once moderate conservatives creating extreme policies on social issues.
Americans must vote in ALL elections it is important, because if the voters don't support their candidates by voting in each election; the opposing side will win. The voters allow the few most vocal to decide the national agenda for the nation. Americans want common sense reforms that create jobs, fixes immigration, reforms the tax code, and fixes US infrastructure. All elections have consequences; to vote in the Presidential elections and to not vote in the mid terms makes no sense.
The mid terms nullify the Presidential election results if the opposition comes out to vote in higher numbers. The South has to examine and decide what is more important hating Obama or holding your local politicians accountable. The lack of legislation during the past four years that the GOP led house has control of Congress; absolutely nothing has been passed. Do we need more government shutdowns. Do we need more of Ted Cruz reading green eggs and ham making a mockery and laughing stock of a dysfunctional Congress for the whole world .
Americans must vote in 2014 and make their voices heard regardless of what party you belong too. It is very important for America to hold their politicians accountable for their actions or inactions.
Posted by A.R. Cruz at 11:31 AM
Tuesday, September 16, 2014
I had to get that unbelievable image, I hadn't seen a rainbow since I was a kid in the Bronx at Orchard Beach. I thought it was cool back then when I tried to run to it to reach it, of course I was six.
Posted by A.R. Cruz at 7:24 PM
Monday, September 15, 2014
many old vintage cars driving around. Once a year these cars are showcased to vintage car enthusiasts.
here is one great car
Posted by A.R. Cruz at 11:19 PM
This blog is all about Antiques, which you have to love. Whether some items are regarded as antiques, collectibles or thrift treasures. Amazing photos
Posted by A.R. Cruz at 10:34 AM
Have to check out this amazing carrot cake recipe, I love carrot cake
Posted by A.R. Cruz at 9:43 AM
Saturday, September 13, 2014
This title is long and I was wording the title as to not to offend or provoke anti Islam rhetoric, but as an observer and a person who doesn't desire any evil intent towards any one. I wonder and ask myself, why is it that people that like to kill, rape, and torture use the religion of Islam to commit Terrorism. With the recent, growth of ISIS and the horrible beheadings of the two innocent American journalists, Foley and Solklof; Americans woke up to another evil Terrorist group using Islam as the inspiration to create an Islamic state. A Qaida has broken up into different groups like Al Nusrah Front, the Taliban and Al Shabaab, Ansar al Shari'a, ISIS, Hamas and Hezbollah just to name a few. These groups get destroyed and then pop up again; after they break up into independent groups with more funding from their wealthy sponsors.
Why is Islam attracting so much distortion of their religion by extremists? This question is important for Americans and the West to understand because if we don't, we will find our selves fighting Islamic extremists forever. As one group is dismantled another rises with disgruntled violent youth attracted to their brand of distorted Islam. Many American prisoners in jail join the religion of Islam; there is a strong conversion rate of inmates joining this religion.
There is a reason that no one wants to discuss the Islamic radicalism issue because of being afraid of being labeled as racist or Islamaphobic. There has been no terror groups that have used Christianity, Judaism, Confucianism, or other religion as an Inspiration to violence and Terrorism. Extremists are being taught intolerance of all western culture and religions, not only by online radicalism, but by many of our Muslim Arab allies in the Middle east.
Our supposed allies in the Middle east, countries such as Turkey, Egypt, Iraq, Bahrain, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Afghanistan; these countries have strict Islamic conservative moral laws. There are countries such as Iraq which has had centuries of religious in fighting between Shiite and Sunni Muslims that were controlled under the dictatorship of Saddam Hussein. The US went to war in Iraq and toppled Hussein, it left a Shi'ite leader that appeared to be an ally of the US, with Maliki; but this leader quickly turned to Iran as an ally. Maliki decided to start the old hostilities of the two religious sects fighting for power and persecuting Sunni Muslims. Many of these Sunni's joined ISIS and now we see the current mess in Iraq and Syria. Saudi Arabia has many of the wealthiest Muslim Arabs in the region, many of these wealthy citizens contribute to terror networks like ISIS, and A Qaida. In addition, many of these nations in the middle east are intolerant of western religions. Westerners can not enter Mecca; and many school aged boys are taught in madrasas that teach them to memorize the Koran in addition to hate any non believers of Islam; in addition to anti-western idea logy. The Saudis practice Wahhabism, very strict conservative form of Islam with strict morality police to enforce strict Shari'a law. Men and woman are lashed for breaking moral laws and are beheaded for crimes. There is the lack of human rights and physical torture and punishment in these societies. As in many of these Middle eastern nations that chose to live in the 13th century when it comes to their laws, disregarding human rights. Qatar is an ally of the US, but they allow the Taliban to hold an office in their country as if this terror network is a business entity; the Qataris have provided funding to terror networks in the region and have a lot of influence among terrorists groups; as proven in recent Gaza and Israeli peace negotiations. Pakistan's military was hiding and protecting Osama Bin Laden; when the Americans secretly went into Pakistan and killed him. Egypt, ironically our closet ally in the region had most of the 911 hijackers come from their country; and recently sentenced many journalists to years in jail for aiding Terrorism for reporting the news. Turkey is becoming a pro-Islamist regime with recent Prime Minister stating that woman should not laugh in public; passing restrictive Islamist conservative laws despite recent corruption uncovered by local media. Bahrain is a country that enjoys many western investors and tourist dollars and has decided to declare Shari'a law for his country men and for any western tourist that violates those moral laws. Despite these countries expanding terror networks by spreading anti western hatred and extreme ideology; and providing funding for these terror organizations to flourish. By the same breath, these nations claim to be our allies by allowing us to have our military bases near to fight extremists that they themselves aid and create.
Why is it that America has to fight these Muslim countries conflicts when they won't fight for themselves, they just lie back and watch us provide all of the funding and blood of American soldiers to fight the extremists they create. As in the recent case of Iraq, these soldiers were trained, they had the huge numbers of soldiers, along with the best American weapons. The first sign of actual fighting these men decided to give themselves up or run away allowing ISIS to get their hands on American weapons. If Iraqis won't fight for themselves, Americans should not be placed in harm's way for a country with a short memory span and no appetite to protect their own country.
American policy has to seriously address the hypocrisy of our allies in this region; if not addressed Islamic extremist Terrorism will continue to grow as there is a constant war of religious distorted ideology. ISIS wants to create a caliphate with their vision of extremist Islam; many of their victims are fellow Muslims so why would they kill their own people? I could never understand how any religion can be used for the purposes of killing innocence in the name of it. It is a contradiction of how evil people will use false arguments to attract gullible, monstrous evil youth from around the world to join their cause, as in ISIS.
America has to change its policy in the Middle east; US diplomats instead of ignoring our allies role in funding and fostering Terrorism. The US needs to address the issue with these nations and convince them that they should stop allowing their wealthy citizens from funding these terror groups such as ISIS because this group is only one of many with global ambition of taking land and countries as part of their caliphate. These nations are in danger of being annexed next even if they do aid these terror networks; there are no loyalties in alliances just greed and ambition as any dictator aspires too. To the citizens of countries that aid ISIS be careful what you wish for, you just might get it in spades.
Middle eastern countries that do not comply with cutting funding to terror groups in the region should have their US aid cut; in addition have state department alerts to traveler's and American businesses about the relationships of Terrorism by these nations contributing to these Terrorist groups. The lack of tourist and investment dollars from America and western European countries should affect their economies significantly, to change their support to these terror groups. The old adage Money talks; most of the western countries provide tourist dollars to places like Egypt and Bahrain.
Americans are afraid of what has been seen by this evil ISIS group but what is surprising is the amount of westerners joining this group. Many young woman and men being duped into joining ISIS, when they get there a whole different reality sets in for them. There are many young men that embrace the violence and have even died for this cause; as the young Florida man, who became a suicide bomber.
Congress has to step up and create laws addressing Americans leaving American soil to commit acts of terror here and abroad. Extreme penalties should be in place for these people committing these acts of terror or planning to join an Islamic terror group that includes decades in prison. The death penalty for the death of innocent victims being killed during their affiliation with terror group; and other measures to stop Americans from travelling abroad to join terror organizations.
Western countries have to work with western Muslim Imams to create effective messaging against Islamic extremist ideology on social media globally. Countries need to block and flag extremist jihadist social media pages, sites and blogs to stop online radicalism which is a threat to the world. This will be a war of messages and a fight of good against evil in the world.
The world has to know that Islamic terror groups are killing more Muslims than westerners, so what is the point of accusing the west of killing Muslims around the globe. As these very same terror groups are the ones truly killing their own people in the name of Islam. When President Obama spoke to the nation about ISIS and about this organization not being an Islamic organization; many pundits criticized the comment since it is seen as denying how Islam is being used by terrorists. The message by the President was not only for the US audience but for the international community watching; President Obama is forming a coalition to include Muslim Middle eastern nations and the West to fight against ISIS. By addressing the nation, President Obama did not want to blame the religion of Islam or Muslims to begin forming the coalition needed to fight this global threat. These Muslim nations will have to make a choice of truly joining the coalition that will protect their own interests in the long term; or continue to aid ISIS watch the caliphate grow and annex their territory.
Posted by A.R. Cruz at 10:48 PM
America is becoming more of a service oriented business society, meaning that many jobs are being created in industries that can't be sent abroad such as restaurants, shops, car repair and health care. Many of these jobs are low paying because of the supply of out of work Americans.
Americans need to create their own small businesses, the creation of independent business owners opening in their towns is what is needed to create economic growth. There has to be less bureaucracy for small business owners and inventors to create, apply for patents and manufacture their own new products for job creation in America.
Immigration reform is one way this economy can be repaired, many of the immigrants already in the US are working in an under ground economy, and are not paying taxes. These 11 million illegal immigrants are contributing to the US economy in their purchase of goods, housing and payment of utilities; many have children born in the US that have become dreamers, college educated citizens and current college students that have never known any other home than the US. These dreamers can not come out of the shadow for fear of deportation. The anti immigrant crowd in America does not realize that by doing nothing, these 11 million are being granted amnesty now; they can't come out of the shadows like all Americans but they can still continue to work, and live in America in these underground local economies. The more delay if fixing broken immigration system; the more opportunity for illegal immigration to continue to grow and the less opportunity to protect the border.
These are some issues that could repair our US economy if these issues were resolved. Mean while, Americans have to create their own opportunities since a broken Congress will not do anything to fix our problems domestically and internationally. Boehner was seen on you tube playing with a mechanical monkey and this is what the House speaker of Congress does with his vacation time. Congress took a five week vacation and came back on September 6th, they are slated to remain in Washington DC for another two weeks and than they go again on vacation until the after the election 0f 2014. These folks get paid over 174,000 and take more vacation than the President, you wouldn't know according Fox news.
Because of Congress inaction, local towns need to create their own jobs by opening small unique business that will attract from all over the US or other countries. On MSNBC on a Sunday show called your small business there was a woman who opened her small business quilting and teaching classes, she began holding you tube classes and she attracted so many visitors to her town seeking her instruction in quilting that the main street of the town started to open a hotel, restaurants, shops in order to accommodate the influx of tourists from the US and around the world. The town before her business was deserted in Michigan, and she single handedly brought back the town economy just by one unique business playing on You tube and creating huge fan base for her product and her individual teaching style of quilting. The show is always on Sunday mornings at 7:30 in the mornings, the show has a site with episodes of the show and great tips for small business growth geared towards small rural towns at https://www.americanexpress.com/us/small-business/openforum/yourbusinesstv/ .
Some ideas for a small business niche are
a mobile hair stylist that brings the salon to home bound clients,
mobile upholstery service that recovers small furniture
lawn service that includes vegetable/flower bed weeding
scrap metal collector that brings unwanted appliances and all metals to recyclers
an estate sales coordinator that performs the estate sales for the client
a cleaning service that performs house foreclosure cleanings where residents leave lots of garbage.
an errand personal shopper for the homebound or elderly
a companion that drives elderly or disabled to medical appointments
up cycling old furniture to create new pieces an example an old dresser chest could become a new bathroom vanity.
Create personalized customized crafts such as wood doll houses, miniatures, embroidery and hand crafts
Make a family recipe into a food product and sell at local bakeries or flea markets
Wash windows and screens for homes
power wash homes and sheds
become a blogger for a local business in area
Become a social media advertising guru, if you know how to drive traffic to local business sites.
Local food grocery delivery service
These are a few ideas on unique opportunities that are considered niche jobs. There are options for small towns to find a method of creating jobs without the aid of government or state. Only an idea, and an amazing You tube video to get your startup going.
Posted by A.R. Cruz at 6:04 PM
Michael Brown, one of many black men shot down in the streets unarmed. There is an epidemic in the US, and there is a backlash to a changing America. This scenario will continue because of the inherent racism in this nation; the stereotypes that are perpuated from both sides of the aisle. The self segregation of our neighborhoods and the lack of understanding and empathy of realizing that all people regardless of race and social class have value in this society.
Until these issues are addressed we will continue to see unarmed black men shot in the street. Racism is a cancer destroying our nation rooted deep in the recess of slavery. One race of people owned another race of people for over 300 years in the Americas.
The years of reconstruction and Jim Crowe laws allowed African Americans to be discriminated and be treated less than human in the South and mid west. The civil rights era of the 1960s granted protections from the federal government to regions of the country to end segregation, to vote and end discrimination. Although, the federal government has created protections and programs to aid minority communities; it hasn't eliminated the problems that still exist in America. Racism can't be eradicated with a government program; only through people realizing that racism is wrong, unfair, unjust and unwarranted, that society will change; as the laws will reflect in its changes. The first step towards ending racism is to stop self segregating our selves into distinct neighborhoods; this creates an educational system where your zipcode determines the quality of your education and keeps us from really knowing each other. The only cure for the ignorance of racism is knowledge of a neighbor's culture and that applies equally to both parties.
Stop stereotyping different ethnic groups; everyone stereo types each other whether we realize it or not. People don't think they are racist until something happens. American society is afraid of blacks and hispanics that are deemed as gang members or thugs; simply due to their clothes. There is a lack of understanding of each other because we fail to put each other in each other's shoes; no real connection unless at work or at school. For the most part do not live in the same communities, and don't really care to reach out to different communities; only choose to judge each other. When someone thinks they are better than another, there is no humanizing or empathizing with them; that is what has to change.
As Americans we have deep wounds in this country that are still open and haven't been cured. There are deep societal inequalities that have negatively affected minorities, who play by the rules and can't seem to go further in their career. There is a sense of hopelessness and despair since the deep divisions of this nation have been exposed openly. For years these issues would rise due to the media coverage after the death of an unarmed black teen; then later media leaves; and nothing ever changes. The justice system does not work for everyone in America and that is known;because the law is technical, prosecutors are ambitious, and the out come is reliant upon the best representation. With so many factors, Justice is not always just. The Trayvon Martin case is an example of miscarriage of justice because of an unarmed teen that had skittles and ice tea was followed by his murderer. The only witness to the event was the murderer himself and that was good enough for a jury of mainly white woman to decide that he was justified in killing this teen. During the trial, Martin was placed on trial even though he was the victim; since the acquittal of Zimmerman, this man has shown his instability being stopped by the police numerous times and being let go. This shows that Zimmerman had an understanding of the justice system and knew how to get out of situations using the law.
When there is a clear misjustice in the system, people lose trust, and convince themselves that it is not designed for everybody, only for whites, the rich and the corrupt. In the 1990's the OJ trial showed deep divisions, in my personal opinion; OJ got away with murder by having the best attorneys to represent him. The timelessness of the same racial and social class issues in our Justice system continue despite all of the past killings. Nothing changes after all of the talks, the protests and the ideas.
We never see a white boy being shot in the streets because we don't see them as a threat. Society sees hoodies, pants hanging down, caps turned on a side or face bandanas as threatening and criminal. Especially, if black or hispanic in an urban area; and these communities know it. They have to live with it, and in hopes that they won't encounter that next scared police officer or a Zimmerman second amendment gun totting wannabe police type.
About two months ago, an elderly white rancher in Nevada named Bundy and many extreme right wing militia supporters pointed assault weapons at federal agents attempting to confiscate cattle because of millions of dollars of unpaid cattle grazing fees. This man and his supporters pointed assault weapons at these federal officers even sniper weapons, and not one of them were arrested. In fact til this day, no one has faced charges, nor have they have been arrested for pointing those weapons at those agents. These people at the ranch were white men expressing their second amendment right; but if some black or hispanic did the very same thing as Bundy and his supporters, you can guarantee there would have been a massacre by the federal agents. There is no way that a minority would have been able to point an assault weapon and a sniper rifle at these agents and not be dead today; and the troubling fact is that as minorities WE KNOW THAT. Those societal injustices, the norms that Americans accept; is how black man are seen through a prism of not being regarded as valued people. That is why Michael Brown is one case and why this will continue to happen in America?
Posted by A.R. Cruz at 4:32 PM
Thursday, September 4, 2014
I made a headboard cover from clean linen vertical blind slats. These blind slats were from windows that were sill length. These blind slats are being used directly over the old wooden head board to create a beautiful contemporary cover.
The items needed are the following;
A stapler, and used old vertical linen fabric blind slats. The size of the blind slats used in this project was from a 57 inches x 63 inch length window. These linen vertical blind slats were folded; about twenty were used for a full size head board. The first step is to prepare the vertical blinds, the ends of both blind slats have metal pieces that have to be removed. The only object remaining should be the linen blinds; take one end of one blind and staple the two ends together to make a long length blind. Create eight long blinds for the horizontal length of rectangular head board
The first long blind piece should be placed around the head board with the two ends meeting , staple the two ends of the blind together behind the headboard. The second long blind should be placed around the head board directly under the first blind and the two ends should be stapled together horizontally.
The next step is to take another blind and place it vertically over the head board creating a basket weave by placing one end of the blind in between the two horizontal blind slats, continue to weave the remaining length and secure with safety pins. Continue to add a blind slat next to the first vertical slat and weave the blind in between the two and continue the fill the top of head board. There should be 16 linen blind slats vertically and two long blind slats horizontally. once all blind slats are secured and tight; staple them securely
The next step is to take a long blind slat and create a horizontal third row and to weave it into the vertical slats than secure it with a safety pin. Continue to do the same with the last row; there should be four rows.
This headboard cover is designed to be temporary; it is a contemporary way to reuse linen vertical blinds in a creative inventive way awhile covering an old wood head board that has seen better days.
Posted by A.R. Cruz at 1:06 PM
Wednesday, August 6, 2014
Americans have to find a method to protect their passwords because of these hackers that find a way into your computer. Sometimes, the information is stolen by simply logging on to well known retail online; a recent example was the hacking into eBay a few months ago.
There are methods of protecting your password and here are some tips:
The first tip is very difficult but it is the best option to protect your password; change your password often; every month.
By constantly changing your password, hackers will have a difficult time getting into your system even if you purchase online using well known retail sites.
Tip number two is in using internet browsers like Google that have a two step verification system in which when you log on, Google will send you a verification code by text which you will have to enter each time; you enter your account. This is called two step verification, although it involves more steps to log on to your account, it is a good method to protect your account information on Google.
Third tip is in choosing passwords don't use personal information such as mother's maiden name, birthdates, consecutive numbers; these are obvious passwords and can be found on social media sites that we volunteer our information on online profiles, such as face book, Google profile, and twitter. There are methods of keeping social media private by changing it from public to private. Do not post birthdates, social security numbers, and family surnames on posts or profile; so that hackers can't mine your personal information.
Fourth tip use randomizer password sites that help create difficult passwords. These computer generated passwords are created randomly with combinations of letters and numbers, usually are very long in length. The only problem is that the passwords can not be forgotten, it would have to be saved or copy and pasted onto a saved word document or spreadsheet form. These passwords cannot be forgotten because you will have difficult time entering site again.
Fifth tip, is that most passwords are stolen by opening phish scam emails; these emails are made to look like informative, marketing or financial banking customer service emails. Many of these emails trick the reader into clicking onto a link informing them of an issue with their account, or purchase and adding a link where people can log on to their sites. These emails trick people into giving their passwords and log in information when they click on link and enter information. There are some emails that have key logger software that tracks the users online typing and browsing on the internet.
The general rule to follow is to NEVER open emails that claim to be from banks, auction sites, retailers that ask for your password, and miscellaneous sites that you may have never heard of. Beware of strangers emailing you or opening any links to unknown sites. The best formula to protect yourself is to have a spam filter to delete incoming emails form strangers; and only open emails from known family and friends. Beware of face book emails, you should check your face book and social media pages directly , don't click on links.
Banks, credit card companies do not send out emails to their clients regarding their personal accounts. The best method is to visit the website directly by typing into the search address bar. Never open a link!
Posted by A.R. Cruz at 8:04 PM
Ignoring climate change and science is not the way to deal with the changes happening in our World. I was reading the Washington Post story on scientists knowing what has caused the Siberian craters opening in Russia. The story was alarming and points to climate change; according to the scientists, the permafrost in Siberia had melted which was holding the Siberian landscape together. This huge crater has opened and released methane gas which in turn is heating up the atmosphere; therefore heating up the planet. The scientists say they want to do more testing to be sure of theory, but the ground is still opening more; they claim that they hear the running water under the ground and more of the land falling into crater. I was reading some of the comments from the Washington Post under the story and it is really unbelievable. The comment page should be identified as a climate denier wing nut page, with a lot of Rush Limbaugh listeners spamming the page with anti climate change political rhetoric. Some even questioned the truthfulness of the scientists on the theory; here is just one example: Bold Big flank says Hey relax people Man can't effect the environment, the science isn't in, no big deal. This is all alarmist nonsense by tree huggers. Get a big truck and roll burning coal it's all a big laugh. We're "conservatives" but don't ask us what we want to conserve
only happens in America says How is anyone surprised that this is blamed on man made global warming? They've been telling us for years that the sky is falling so why not claim that the ground is falling?
Talk about Mitt Romney being severely conservative; this crowd is severely brainwashed.
...Note that the commenters don't offer a differing theory as to what is opening these craters and show no concern with what is being actually reported and photographed. Fact craters are opening up in Siberia, fact scientists detected levels of methane; rhetoric their comments that are all politicized. Actually, the Senate had reported that their was a growing sentiment among Americans of climate denial and of rejection of science which alarmed the committee because Americans have always been innovators and inventors of science and technology. This anti science movement can damage our economy in the long run; and this thinking is being driven by the brainwashing of Americans by Conservative talk radio. America wake up and think for yourselves, don't follow what some conservative media hack says; follow and deny. Think, research, question just basics to independent thinking; our society has lost the ability to really question what they are listening to in conservative media especially ratings driven talk radio. Here is link to that story; very great article in conservative Washington Post; click here...
Posted by A.R. Cruz at 10:12 AM
Something tells us we are not in Kansas anymore; Senator Pat Roberts wins over tea party or so they say; to tell you the truth can't tell the difference between traditional GOP over tea Party since both are the same.
Governor Brown back has destroyed the state of Kansas with the extreme Tea Party leadership and building a tax free state. Since he has been in office, schools have closed down, teachers and students uprooted from their district schools, billions in debt, poor job creation and their bond rating has gone down. The economy is so bad that even over 100 GOP local Kansas legislature representatives are voting for the Democrat Paul Davis in this Governors race, unreal. You know its really bad when your party is voting against you in elections 2014. This is a wake call for America, this is the Reaganomics national GOP model of no taxes, no regulations, extreme conservatism; and it has been an economic and social experiment failure. America under George Bush had a tax cut model for 8 years for wealthy and corporations, no infrastructure building, huge funds for defense; with no revenue we had huge deficits. Now since Obama managed a small tax increase in 2012, the deficit is the lowest it has been in decades. If you take money on a credit card and collect no TAX REVENUE for eight years you will never pay down debt. Instead be forced to borrow more money, that is what GOP policies have done for eight years under Bush; in addition to extreme spending on two unpaid wars and an expensive unpaid Medicare Drug prescription program.
Clinton knew how to run an economy that is why in the 1990s the economy was good; but after 2000 when Bush came in there was a neglect of domestic policies and everything was concentrated in Iraq and Afghanistan. The President has been in office for six years but has had only two years of implementing and passing legislation through Congress. The President has not had a real partner ship with people willing to work with him; instead they have gone overboard in rhetoric calling him lawless for passing less executive orders than any other President; simply because he has to get some laws changed and done in Washington DC. If you don't have a working partner that prefers to do what is good for the country but is more interested in partisan politics; both sides can not work together to pass laws.
President Obama if he is so lawless why hasn't immigration reform been done yet, why hasn't his job bill been passed?, why hasn't his infrastructure bill been passed? American people should ask these questions and when they do ; they will know that the GOP has engaged in rhetoric, lies and distortions of his executive orders. No President can pass any new laws or executive orders that create new laws. All Presidents have power of executive orders that involves changing existing laws only. Congress is the only body of government that is supposed to pass laws; since the Tea Party and Ted Cruz got elected into the Senate; these two have controlled Boehner led GOP House. If GOP gets the Senate there is no doubt; impeachment is on the table as told by Steve KING of Iowa. I bet Iowa is proud of what they have in their Congress.
Don't get discouraged this election cycle make your voice heard and vote in 2014.
Posted by A.R. Cruz at 9:37 AM
Friday, August 1, 2014
The only solution to this conflict is to call for the destruction of Hamas; because this Terrorist organization is not a honest broker for peace. In a recent TV interview a reporter asked the leader of Hamas, the question "will you recognize the state of Israel and he said "No". The UN and the US brokered a three day cease fire for humanitarian aid for the Palestinians; and Hamas used this cease fire to commit a suicide bomber attack on Israeli soldiers and kill four soldiers during the first hours of the cease fire. Hamas knew that the Israeli's were going to destroy the tunnels as negotiated and were laying in wait for the soldiers. Hamas used the cease fire to plan an attack on Israeli's; how can Israel trust any negotiated cease fire now? Hamas in Spanish means "Never" my guess is that in Arabic it means the same; since Arabs controlled Spain for over 700 years before the crusades.
The international community has to do more to stop this conflict before it spreads throughout the Middle east and has potential to generate terrorist attacks on Europeans and Americans at home and abroad. This conflict will spread and the threat of a Terrorism World War will occur. The UN is not an objective broker in this conflict because the spokesperson for the UN broke down and cried over the deaths of the Palestinian children on International TV; and Banki Moon made a statement against Israel shelling UN schools that caused the deaths of innocent children. These two very public TV appearances has promoted anti Israeli sentiment around the world especially in Europe in very heavily populated areas where Arabs live. The UN has demonstrated their bias towards the Hamas terror group and treated them as an honest broker in this matter. The UN has not condemned Hamas for the violation of this cease fire as of August 1, 2014, hours after it was supposed to start. Nor has the UN told Hamas to stop hiding their weapons inside UN or around the areas of these schools. The world media has not condemned the use of innocent children as Hamas human shields. If Hamas truly wants to protect their own innocent people; stop using them as props to hide their missiles.
The world community should start to evacuate only woman, children and the elderly into temporary refugee camps outside of Gaza to remove them from allowing Hamas from using these innocent people as human shields. Allow the Israeli army to destroy the infrastructure and Hamas militants; once this group is eliminated, the world community can help to rebuild Gaza under the careful supervision of International monitors to make sure all supplies such as cement and construction supplies be used for the rebuilding of schools, hospitals, homes, bomb shelters and Gaza's infrastructure. Install the PLO as the only governing faction; and allow Gaza to have more autonomy and more independence within Gaza. Hold the PLO accountable with sanctions; if they reinstall Hamas or any other Terror group into governance. There will never be peace in this region if Hamas is left in power in Gaza. The Palestinians and Israeli's will never be true friends or good neighbors because there is decades of killing and destruction to get over. The Palestinians will always see Israel as an occupier of their lands; but the World community has acknowledged Israel as a state and has granted them this territory. It doesn't make sense for Palestinians to continue to teach their young children to hate Israel so much; that it destroys their own chances of developing their own independent State. As long as Hamas is in the Gaza strip creating terror acts against Israel; there will never be a two state solution.
Posted by A.R. Cruz at 11:48 AM
The rise of social media can create a great avenue for small towns to promote their events for free; like twitter, you tube, face book; just to name a few social media platforms. Create a real unique video and get the attention of the media; write a free press release that media outlets scour for news ideas. These are just a few tips on how small town America can give themselves a stimulus. It is not easy because it needs a leader, hard work, organization of town council and local Chamber of commerce to create a plan to attract tourists to their town.
Ocala is a prime example of a quiet suburban town with great dining, great shopping, natural trails, huge national forest and great silver springs Park; just to name a few attractions.
Ocala hosts many events on the town square area and an annual art festival. There are many antique, vintage shops in the area, a great past time. There are a lot of horse farms and is known as the horse capitol of the world.
Ocala has potential to stimulate and create jobs by promoting many of these places, events and titles. Ocala was voted best American town to live in 1996.
|Ducks in a pond inside Pine Run estates|
Posted by A.R. Cruz at 11:43 AM
Thursday, July 31, 2014
There are many different periods of jewelry designs in history, a lot of times the jewelry will tell its age because of the design and the wear on it. Beware of fakes on the market from China; it is better to shop on well known online antique shops, not the auction sites.
On auction sites there is a small risk of jewelry being reproductions; if purchasing for only private collection it would be risky but okay. If you are purchasing vintage jewelry as a reseller than the jewelry should be verified as original piece regardless of price.
Here are some photos of some of my pieces, I really don't spend a lot of money on these pieces but it makes feel good saving a piece of unique vintage jewelry history.
|Heart bracelet and Cancer ribbon awareness pin|
|Chinese blessing charm http://www.savingshouse.blogspot.com|
|1920s scarab earrings http://www.savingshouse.blogspot.com|
|1933 worlds fair ring http://www.savingshouse.blogspot.com|
|1940s era delft jewelry lot www.savingshouse.blogspot.com|
|tiny delft ring really cute, http://www.savingshouse.blogspot.com|
|1940's era travel gift Cuban wood pin http://www.savingshouse.blogspot.com|
|Reproduction cameo pieces and 1970s era pin/pendent tiger pin. Http://www.savingshouse.blogspot.com|
|Jelly Belly Spider Pin, starfish pin, vintage clip earrings http://www.savingshouse.blogspot.com|
|1960s Parrot pin http://www.savingshouse.blogspot.com|
|Silver claddaugh friendship ring http://www.savingshouse.blogspot.com|
Posted by A.R. Cruz at 12:44 PM