Monthly Archives: June 2014

Beginning in July


I have two more serious articles for you. Then starting in July we will have fun. In July I will be starting a new series on Lost Treasures. We will cover Yamashita’s Treasure, the Lost Faberge Eggs, The Amber Room, the Missing Ship of the 1715 Fleet, the Ark of the Covenant, the Lost Da Vinci Manuscripts, and if we have time – the Holy Grail.

See you Sunday,

Joe

Comments Off on Beginning in July

Filed under New

Father’s Day 2014


My daughter always starts asking me two to three weeks before Father’s Day, if it is Father’s Day yet. She loves her dad, but she is thinking about our annual fishing trip to Slate Run Park. Slate Run is one of Columbus, Ohio’s Metro Parks, if you have not been, it is a great park that includes playgrounds, picnic areas, a 19th century working farm, fishing ponds, and so much more.  We have been taking these trips since I collapsed at work and had to be rushed to the hospital just a month before Father’s Day five years ago. It was the quick actions of the rescue workers and nurses at work that made that first fishing trip possible.

This week I have also been reading blogs of other dads and what they think about Father’s Day. It runs the spectrum from a dad who hated Father’s Day until he was a dad, all the way to a dad who took the opportunity to blast dads who are not good dads. He stated that he will always be present and active in his kid’s lives.

The first dad I understand. His dad was an alcoholic and was not a part of his life. He said he cried for the first time a year after his dad died. Not for his dad, but because there would never be the opportunity for his dad to clean up his act and be the father he had always wanted his dad to be.

The second dad had a pretty clear cut definition of what he considered a good dad. He was a little younger than the first dad. I hope this young dad never has to endure the trials and tribulations that so many other people have to go through. One of the things he seemed to really dislike was dads who are absent from their kid’s lives. I thought about the parents during the great depression who could not feed their kids so they gave them to farmers. The kids would have to work the farm, but they would be cared for and fed. Many of those kids never saw their parents again.

The second dad also reminded me of a poll I read this week, and a person I met about seven years ago who made a real impact on me.

The poll said that over the last 20 to 30 years our politicians and the people themselves have become more and more polarized by politics. The poll stated that as Americans have become more and more polarized they have also increased their desire for compromise from our politicians. The poll also stated how Americans today define compromise; the other side giving to them most or all of what they themselves want. I always thought give and take was, give a little take a little; I never knew it was, you give me what I want and I take it.

That brings me to the person who impressed me so long ago. That person said, “I am very, very tolerant — except of intolerant people.” I asked how she defined intolerant people. She had a list of things. After she stated each item I asked her view on that subject. It turns out that if you share her views – you are tolerant and she is tolerant of you. If you do not share her views, you are intolerant, and she will not be tolerant of you.

Hmmm, I think my grandfather would disagree with her definition of tolerant. My grandfather was one of those “live and let live” kinds of people. I am most thankful that he was the driving force in my life. I had a father, and he was a dominant force in my life until I decided to ignore him. My dad was always there every time I did or tried anything. He was always the first to say anything too; “You’re gonna fail, you can’t do that, you will never amount to anything, you need me, you’d be nothing without me.” I think if the first daddy blogger and I could have traded dads he would have felt the same way now as he does about his dad. I do not have bad feelings for my dad things are what they are. My grandfather though, was a great dad to me, even if he did not spend enough time in my life to pass the second daddy blogger’s definition of a good dad. Little Pa (my maternal grandfather) and I always had quality time together. I always wanted more time with him, but was always thankful for what I got. He still influences me to this day, more than 35 years after his death.

I do have people who ask why I am not angry about my dad. Well, it is like I told my mother many years ago.

When my dad was a little boy and an adult asked him, “Son, what do you want to be when you grow up?”

I do not know what my dad answered, but I can tell you what he did not say. He did not say, “I am going to grow up and have a family of my own so I can physically and mentally abuse them. I am going to have a son that I will name after me, and then I will spend the rest of my life telling him how worthless he is and how he will never succeed at anything.”

I am pretty confident that is NOT how he answered that question.

When my dad died I went to his funeral and burial. Out of three sons and an ex-wife, I was the only one who went. Many people asked me why I went. I usually give a glib answer. But, the real reason I went? He was my dad. Yes, if I had been born 20 years later he probably would have done jail time for abuse. He never told me he was proud of me, he never told me I did a good job, and the only time he ever said he loved me was the one time I pointed out to him he had never told me he loved me. But he was my dad. Second daddy blogger would definitely say my dad was not a good dad.

I do not know what happened in the twenty years between when he was a little tyke and when he became a dad. But I wonder if the second daddy blogger would be as good a dad as he is now if he had had to go through the same trials and tribulations my dad went through for those twenty years. We will never know, but I doubt it.

I know many people who lost a parent, some through death, some through sicknesses (including drugs and alcohol), and some because that parent just left. Everyone has to come to terms with the loss of a parent in their own way.

There are parents that the second daddy blogger would definitely not approve of who have tried more, to do more, for their kids than some of those people who have “Parent of the Year” plaques on the wall. Sometimes parents (like those depression era parents who could not feed their kids) look at their children, and truly believe, the best chance their child has at a good life is if they are not in their child’s life.

I am one of those dads who second daddy blogger would say is not a good dad. There are also people who are always telling me I am a great dad. What I know is this. I am not the dad I want to be, I want to be a better dad to my daughter. A better dad as I define it, not as second daddy blogger or anyone else defines it. I know my daughter, and I know what I wish I could do for her.

But, you know what it really comes down to is that we all need to be a little more forgiving of others, we all need to compromise sometimes. Real compromise; meaning you give a little to the other side and the other side gives a little to you. And here’s a little secret for you, tolerance, real tolerance – is accepting people you do not agree with and allowing them to be the person they are even if you do not like it. Accepting people who agree with you, is not being tolerant; it is taking sides and lining up your team.

Now, I want to tell you about someone else who made an impact on me. I have a friend who wrote an open letter to her dad one Father’s Day. She never knew her father; he left his wife and two kids when my friend and her brother were quite young. But, I think she can teach us all something about forgiveness, compromise, and accepting others without making them measure up to our own definitions of what “good people” are.

She wrote that she did not know or understand why he left, but she knew he had his reasons. She wrote that she hoped he did not beat himself up over leaving his kids. She said her and her brother turned out pretty good. Then she said that she loved him and she hoped that where ever he is, he was happy and having a good life.

I know many people really do not get her attitude towards her dad. I have never asked her why she feels the way she does towards him, but I have a feeling that if I did ask her, she would say, “He’s my dad.”

So here is to all you dads out there, the good and the bad, and the ones who will never measure up to the standards of strangers. We love you dad, each and every one of us. Why? Because as my friend would say,

“He’s my dad.”

Comments Off on Father’s Day 2014

Filed under New

No more Snowdens! From Today Forward – We Become Our Own Fact Checkers!


Not that long ago a friend of mine, Sheri, asked me and several other bloggers to join her in standing up to the corrupt governments of the world. Our goal was to unite as one voice, left and right, to stand up together against the actions of politicians and bureaucrats (left and right) that have undermined the sovereignty of the people. We speak out against the wrongs of governments around the world without taking sides with one political party or the other. We write about these wrongs on our own individual blogs and share what we have written with each other and our readers. I have focused my attention primarily on the United States. Some actions (such as the rewriting of American history) are often portrayed as the sin of one side or party or the other. However, this is far from the truth. The politicians in Washington DC have more in common with each other than the constituents and special interest groups they claim to represent.

A good example of this in the United States is immigration reform. Our politicians ignore the law instead of correcting the law. Politicians on the left AND the right. Why? Because it helps them to push their own agenda. Granted, the politicians on the left and right are pushing agendas that in many areas are different from their opponents. But, when given a choice between their political opponents or the American people, the American people lose every time. No one is above the law, and when the law is wrong we change it through the proper procedure. A procedure our founders wrote into our constitution, expressly for the purpose of changing bad law. THAT, is the difference between a democracy and a democratically elected republic. The left and the right each get something they want by allowing this mess of our immigrations laws to continue as is. It also perpetuates their belief that THEY are above the law. In a republic – NO ONE is above the law!

The constitution was written so that the sovereign power of the United States was invested in the people of the United States. The politicians were intended to act on our behalf and under the temporary authority invested in them by the people. That is what the phrase from Mr. Lincoln meant, “… by the people, of the people, for the people …”

The politicians would rather see the political leaders of the opposition party gain power, than to see the real power returned to the American people. I say returned because the authority, sovereignty, and power of the United States of America was originally invested in the people. The usurpation of this power began in the early 1800s while many of the founders were still alive.

A good example of this is the phrase “American exceptional-ism.” Forty years ago my grandfather explained to me what “American exceptional-ism” is. His explanation bears no resemblance to the definition used by Senator McCain and President Obama. They like to say, that every nation, in its own way, and to its own people is exceptional. My grandfather said that what was exceptional about the United States, what was unique; was the idea that our nation was founded on. The people of this nation are the rulers of this nation, not the politicians. He taught me that this nation was created as a republic and not a democracy, so that the freedoms of ALL Americans would be protected. A republic is a nation of rules or laws. Laws that every person of the nation, from the homeless person in the back alley to the man or woman in the oval office at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue are responsible to respect, obey, and support. Not just the laws that we agree with, but all the laws; only in this way can all people be assured of equal protection of their natural rights as human beings.

There are people who are: republicans and democrats, politicians and judges, senators and representatives, lawyers and bureaucrats who routinely ignore, usurp, and violate these laws, they do not understand, dislike, or disagree with the restrictions placed on them (as the rulers they believe they are) by these laws. The founders put in place mechanisms in our laws, which made it possible to change our laws when the need arises. Our employees (the politicians and bureaucrats) ignore and violate these laws for one reason. It restrains the usurpation of our power and prevents them from making us their subjects. They know that if they put the reform of these laws in front of the people, to be changed to THEIR advantage (instead of the People’s advantage), they would lose. So, they just violate the law.

One of the things the politicians and their supporters like to perpetuate is the notion that everything great about the United States today, we stole from other Peoples. They teach this by leaving out large swaths of history.

In 1831 when Frenchman Alexis de Tocqueville came to the United States, this country was less than 60 years old. Russia was ruled by the Czar with total authority for over 800 years. England was closer in age to Russia than the United States and had a constitutional monarchy. As a matter of fact, all the nations (with the exception of France’s newest government) were many centuries older than the United States. Yet the United States was competing with and surpassing these much older nations. We could compete with Europe, economically, living conditions of our citizens, and the social conditions of our citizens. It was puzzling, how could such a young nation compete with and exceed the much older nations of Europe. But, more than that, the United States citizenry were the unwanted people of Europe. The protestant Huguenots of Catholic France, the serfs, peasants, and Jews of Russia, Catholics and Protestants of England, as well as all the social and economic rejects of other European nations came to America and made it great.

Yes, I did say Catholics AND Protestants fled England. England was Catholic until King Henry VIII broke with the Catholic Church. The King created the Church of England in its place. The Puritans, who founded Plymouth, Massachusetts, were Protestant but not members of the Church of England. The Puritans were denied the right to worship in the manner they saw fit, because they would not join the Church of England. They had to worship in secrecy, just as religious people in the Soviet Union would do centuries later.

When our arrogant and law breaking employees talk about America, they will tell you how “we” stole the land from the Mexicans and Indians. I know you have probably heard of the Louisiana Purchase. But, did you ever hear about Seward’s Folly, the 1783 Treaty of Paris, the Anglo-American Convention of 1818, the Gadsden Purchase (of 1853), the Hay-Bubau-Varilla Treaty (or of the many other land acquisitions by the United States that did not involve Native Americans)? Probably not. Depending on your age a couple of those you may know or have heard of before but cannot remember.

Have you ever heard of the Native American tribes that became extinct before Columbus? A little yes. We still have many artifacts from them including impressive structures they left behind. But, what do the experts say happened to them? We don’t know it’s a mystery. Do you hear the names of the individual tribes? No. We refer to them as “paleo” or refer to them by regions. Some of these different individual tribes died out as the climate changed over thousands of years. Some died of disease and some died in wars with other tribes of indigenous Peoples. But, you do not hear about that?

Also, we skip from Columbus in 1492 to the genocides committed by the United States in the middle and late 1800s, a nation that did not exist for almost 300 years after Columbus. What about all the people who disappeared during that time? Many died from disease brought by Europeans. Some died from wars with other tribes and some died at the hands of the Europeans. But, all of these deaths are blamed on the United States.

Amateurs and professionals have begun to find evidence that Native Americans thought to have lived exclusively in Central and South America had cities in areas of what is now the United States. Lands they conquered from those who were already there.

Let us get something straight. What happened to the Native Americans at the hands of the United States and its citizens was an atrocity. But, we were not the first or the last. The responsibility of those Americans (oh by the way those Americans are dead and have been for quite a while) cannot be explained away. But, their actions did not happen in a vacuum. Humans have been killing each other over land and for supremacy over each other for tens of thousands of years before Columbus or the Vikings arrived on this continent, right or wrong it is the nature of man.

But, here is the rub, this history (and sooo much more) is never discussed by our employees (politicians, bureaucrats, and their supporters). It does not advance their agenda to tell us ALL of the history – the good, the bad, and the ugly. We need to know our history, all of our history, the good, the bad, and the ugly. Not just parts of the history that helps our employees push their own personal agendas at the expense of some or all Americans. We cannot make amends for a wrong to someone who has been long dead, nor can we punish the person (or persons) who are responsible for that wrong – because they have been dead about as long as the person/persons they wrong. What we can do, is ensure that we, and the future generations who follow us, do not commit those same actions.

What can we do? Learn our history – all of it. Never take the word of anyone, as the Russians say “trust, but verify.” Not all errors are intentional, some are just repeating what was already heard, but not verified.

We are ALL Americans,” … endowed by our creator with certain unalienable rights.” What is an unalienable right? “Unalienable right” does not mean “God given rights.” Unalienable rights are non-transferrable rights (look it up). That means that no dictator, king, queen, or politician can take them from; not even if they pass a law. You see they did not give those rights; you were born with those rights simply because you are human. Governments can violate those rights, but they are still your rights. Governments can not take what they did not give, they can only usurp what is rightfully OURS.

You know, it is really not that hard to learn our history a little bit at a time. History is not names and dates. History is what you and I have done, what our parents have done, and grandparents, and billions of other people. That butterfly in Asia that flaps its wings and causes a storm in Mexico City doesn’t just have effects across continents, but through time as well. So, the next time you hear of something like the Gadsden Purchase … take five minutes and look it up.

We can make a difference; freedom is something that every human being can enjoy. More important, every human being SHOULD enjoy freedom, it is after all our birthright has humans. Do not let our employees get away with telling us just part of the story. But, we should also not follow someone who tells us the history we want to believe either. When you look things up you will find out things you do not believe, even things you may not want to believe. But, when you acknowledge that our ancestors were not as bad or unique as you thought; or you acknowledge that our ancestors were worse and more unique than you thought, then you will gain the respect of those who believe differently than you. Then we can make real progress to live together peacefully with our differences.

1 Comment

Filed under New

Good Sunday Morning


Since coming back to Ohio two months ago, I have been trying to take care of issues with my ex-wife (or more correctly her lawyer). Attempting to work within the “justice” system here in Ohio has consumed almost all of my time. So that said, I have not been able to write for the last several weeks, and I have used up my pool of previously written articles. I am sorry about that, I will try and get something for you next Sunday.

Take care,

Joe

1 Comment

Filed under New