Pat Piper has made a career learning something new. As a journalist in the news business, “something new” occurs every hour so he’s becoming an expert at understanding stuff he never thought about. Learning became a common word in “Future Talk: Conversations About Tomorrow” (Warner Books), the popular book he ghostwrote with Larry King as […]

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    Archive for August, 2018

    Raining On The Parade

    By on August 19, 2018 in See It Here

    President Trump wanted a military parade so he could show foreign leaders how big and powerful the United States is, but that’s not going to happen because it costs too much. I guess this means the United States isn’t that big money-wise. But this has nothing to do with money, about money, even though he is blaming Washington D.C. officials for the no-go, because the estimated cost to host such an event is $92 million.

    This began after he was a guest at a military parade in France celebrating Bastille Day and, of course, decided, we can be bigger than that. Remember, size matters when one is short-sighted.

    The Pentagon says it will “explore opportunities in 2019,” which is code for “don’t piss Trump off.” For now, advisers say the president could watch a parade at nearby Joint Base Andrews, which he could have done in the first place. One problem: There’s no parade planned  (yet) at JBA.

    The American Legion has suggested the $92 million be spent on veterans. instead of a reviewing stand in front of the White House a venue where all of us can applaud the President. Or, he could spend a lot less and show up to salute U.S. troops in Afghanistan or the DMZ.

    While I hope we don’t start becoming numb when goofy ideas come from the Oval Office, I will admit to increased nausea as a result of these daily efforts driven by “look-at-me.”

    Raining (and reigning) On The Parade 

    By on August 15, 2018 in See It Here
    There is an old phrase that defines what took place (and didn’t take place) in Lafayette Park across from the White House when white nationalists/supremacists/clowns gathered to protest the fact they’ve realized their race is becoming a minority.
    If a tree falls into a forest and nobody is there to hear it, does it make a sound?
    This demonstration made a lot of noise because a lot of people  wanted to let the Unite The Right members know they had it all wrong. So that “tree” made a very loud sound. The fact it started pouring rain minutes before all 35 of them gathered was a gift from above because testosterone doesn’t like getting wet.
    These idiots who refuse to read and accept and understand history and, instead, wish things were the way it used to be, have every right to gather and lament the real world, just as those who see it differently. Being stupid is always easier than thinking.
    Being in the news business, there were discussions about promoting this event that had yet to happen in a newscast. There was concern about legitimizing racism. There is already, I hope, an ethical discussion underway in journalism schools (now called “media” schools) about spending time in a newscast on what is called “ego-wacko” (mass shooters wanting to hear their name, racists wanting to outdo someone else, gun toting-must carry fanatics wanting to protect the Second Amendment make their point so everyone breaks out in applause) in place of covering the decision to boycott Harley Davidson if it starts building motorcycles outside of the United States?
    If it happens, it has a place. That’s because democracy allows idiocy, but it also allows the right to ignore idiocy and viewers-listeners-bloggers-readers and people on the street should be smart enough to make that decision. But whenever a “media” outlet refuses to expose it, we begin to lean toward an organized effort to silence a voice that says “no.” Democracy isn’t pretty. It is extremely frustrating and it isn’t easy. And to quote the philosopher Martha Stewart: “that’s a good thing.”

    Tweet Street

    By on August 7, 2018 in See It Here
    For those who have been on the the planet Neptune (most say “Pluto,” but it’s now considered it a “mini-planet”), one may not be aware the White House– and those who cover the White House– are having some issues.
    Press Secretary Sarah Sanders says the President’s tweets are his opinion. This is different from when all the tweets started after changing addresses from Trump Tower to that place on Pennsylvania Avenue when, then, Press Secretary Sean Spicer said the tweets are from the president.
    In other words, the tweets are the position of the White House.
    When pressed (poor choice of words) at briefings, the White House has two major points to make:
    (1) “I have nothing for you on that”
    (2) “We’ve been over this before and the situations remains the same.”
    Non-answers result in more questions as they should. And yes, there are more important issues at hand.
    Here’s a suggestion for the White House Press Office:
    If the tweets appear on theRealDonaldTrump, then they are his opinion.
    If they appear on POTUS, then they are the position of the United States.
    If the POTUS ones are inaccurate, then it is legitimate to ask at the briefing.
    This ain’t that difficult. Living on Neptune (or elsewhere) is difficult.