Archive Page 2


Let’s Sit On This Privilege Thing for a Moment

You hear a lot of talk about privilege, and for the most part, I think that talk can be useful. But much like diversity, discrimination, oppression and many others, political correctness and overzealousness risk making the word privilege more and more empty of meaning.

This weekend, there was a piece on NPR—I think it was on “This American Life”—in which one segment talked about a town where many of the struggling people in it had ever even considered the Office Chairpossibility that jobs exist that don’t require you to stand and/or use your hands heavily. Their lives were so caught up in lack of work or jobs that wore them down that many of them hadn’t encountered people who sit at a desk most of the day until they went to a government office to deal with the process of getting disability benefits.

I’m pretty sure I heard the journalist for the segment at one point close to that anecdote refer to the ability to sit and work as a privilege.

Today, my wife posted a tweet that also mentioned the ability to sit while working as being a privilege (maybe the concept is working through her Twitter timeline or maybe she heard the same segment today…I haven’t asked her yet).

And, on this matter, I will have to disagree with “This American Life” and my fantastic wife Black Girl in Maine (if indeed she actually was buying into that theory), even though I usually would side with both.

I’m pretty sure a person in a telemarketing job isn’t feeling very privileged, and they do a hell of a lot of sitting. I’ve seen photos of women in sweat shops sitting at sewing machines, and they don’t look very privileged either. An overworked word processing or software coding person with crippling carpal tunnel syndrome from that work isn’t in a privileged situation either, though probably better off than the previous two.

And you know what? On the other side of the coin (standing), I have relatives who done machinist work where, as they’ve described it, it sounds like most of their time is spent standing. But they made good hourly pay and even better when they did overtime and they had nice benefits. My mom spent a good part of her adult like as a bartender or a barber, both on-your-feet jobs that while they may not have been lucrative, paid her better (and made her happier) than working as a receptionist in a law firm.

I think the point made on NPR about how isolated from the wider world those workers were and how it colored their perceptions of work environments and job opportunities is valuable. It tells us a lot about education, social class and poverty, for example. It does not, however, teach us that sitting is a privileged spot in life.

I’ve seen a lot of homeless people who aren’t well sitting on sidewalks and begging. They aren’t privileged.

There is plenty of privilege in the world. White privilege is real, because whites are pretty much the only people in the United States who don’t go through most of the week being reminded repeatedly they aren’t white by the way people talk about them, talk to them, treat them, react to them and so on. Male privilege is real, because I don’t hear of too many men at risk of being raped unless they’re in prison (unlike women, who are so often told they’re asking for their rapes by the way they dress). Also, women in the 21st century still get to wonder, as did their counterparts in the 20th,  if they’re among the majority of female workers making significantly less wages than what men do for the exact same  jobs.

Hell, being able-bodied is a privilege, as most of us never have to think much about how to navigate stairs and doors or whether we’ll be able to get around a business or someone’s house or even be able to use a small restroom in a diner. Even being right-handed in a privilege in this culture because we can reach for almost any pair of scissors knowing it will fit our hand.

There are all kinds of privilege of which we should be aware, so that we don’t take for granted what we have and don’t assume that everyone can succeed in this society. We need to realize the playing field is rarely level in any case, but we also need to recognize the field is very often particularly slanted in favor of some and against others for no good, logical or moral reason.

But we can’t make everything about privilege. My example of right-handedness? It is a legitimate example of privilege, but a relatively minor one. I’ve known left-handers and they may get annoyed at their inconveniences in a right-handed world, but it won’t hold them back. So it would be unfair for someone to claim that their experience as a left-handed person is anything like being Black or Latino and getting stopped and searched by the police for no good reason.

Let’s be careful about calling out privilege where it doesn’t consistently exist or in places where it is a mere footnote. Let’s not make oppressed groups where they don’t exist, when we have so many legitimate ones we’re already ignoring.


Brand New Madness

Attention, world: I am not a brand. Most people aren’t brands. We should stop trying to push this whole, “find out what your brand is and market the hell out of it” approach to life. It’s not healthy, and it will ruin us all if it continues.

Companies and their products are brands. And they have people (sometimes hundreds or thousands of them) to preserve, promote and enhance those brands. But there is a disturbing trend as we’ve become so much more interconnected online—and as a very, very few people even find financial success  there with blogs and such—to tell people that they need to discover their own personal brand or create one, and then market that brand.

It’s a problem because most of us don’t have time to adequately and appropriately market a brand, not even our own personal one. A person who is a success at blogging (financially, that is) probably puts in the equivalent of a full workday most days of the week (and perhaps all of them) to be that kind of success. And for every person like that, there are probably at least 10 others putting in the same hours and effort and getting little or nothing in return. And then hordes of others beyond that who dream of such possibilities but are bogged down by the necessities of going to work, doing housework, cooking, running errands, raising kids, walking the dog, etc.

What’s worse, though, is it isn’t just people seeking a breakthrough online. Increasingly, especially as more people connect through LinkedIn and other social networking venues, we are expected to “brand” ourselves in terms of our careers and potential employment. Or our personal relationships.

But there’s a huge risk in that. Actually, several risks. How you brand yourself may not be how others see you or are willing to accept you. Branding yourself, if successful, may also “typecast” you into a niche and deny you access to other opportunities. Trying to market your brand may use up time you should be devoting elsewhere or, in a related problem, you put a bunch of work into finding out your brand only to realize you don’t have the time, the resources or the skill to market that personal brand.

And those are just a few problems off the top of my head. I’m sure there are more.

We are people. We are not products. The more we turn ourselves into brands, the more we make ourselves into commodities. You know, the kinds of things businesses buy and trade. Do you want to be a product or do you want to be a person?

Increasingly since the end of World War II, when we entered the heyday of the middle class, we’ve seen things toward the end of the 20th century and the beginning of the 21st continue to chip away at that middle class and give more and more power back to the companies and away from employees. We’ve slowly given up what we fought so hard to gain to be treated right and be treated as humans, only say, “Oh, I guess I should work whatever hours you say so you keep me” or “I guess it’s OK that I don’t get to use vacation time or can’t afford to include my family on the health insurance” or “Yeah, the execs should see their pay increase more and more and more while my pay stagnates or falls behind inflation.” And now, after slowly letting them take away any sense that we have earned the right to be treated well because we work hard, now we willingly prepare to make ourselves into “things.” If we make ourselves brands, then we are fit to be bought and sold, both literally and metaphorically. We risk becoming tied to that brand and forced to maintain it long beyond our comfort zone. We cease to be people. We truly become cogs. To be used until worn out, and then replaced without a thought.

Yes, some people need to brand themselves, or some part of their lives. But for most, that’s foolish.

Deacon Blue is a brand.

Jeff Bouley is not.

I am, in essence, the CEO in charge of shepherding a brand that is Deacon Blue. I am a part of that brand. Who I am influences that brand. But it isn’t who I am. I am not, in the end, Deacon Blue. Nor should I be. I don’t want to become a character or, worse yet, a caricature. I won’t brand myself; I will let the whole spectrum of who I am stand out.

There is nothing wrong with me promoting Deacon Blue. But the fact is, Jeff Bouley will not be a brand that can be pinned down and pigeonholed. I am a human and I am complex, with many skills to offer, many things to give and even many problems to pose. I will not strip away who I am to get down to a core that is false. Too many people think that by branding, they are stripping away the excess and getting down to the core of who they truly are. But if you peel everything away to be just one thing or a just a few things, you have made yourself false.

You may have a brand to market. But if you think that you are a brand, you are deluding yourself, I believe.

Or, even worse, diminishing yourself to fit in to someone else’s mold.


1…2…3…4…I Declare a…

I will never be president of the United States. Partly because I don’t want to, as the hours are too long, the work is way too hard for the pay involved, and I don’t need to age any faster than my 7-year-old daughter is already responsible for. However, mostly I won’t be president because I’d be completely unelectable. I’d be speaking my mind, swearing frequently at public appearances and telling frothing, right-wing pundits and annoyingly smarmy left-wing ones where to put their gonads for maximum hilarity and humiliation.

However, were I to somehow become president, I would make a very simple system for dealing with despotic, totalitarian rulers, knowing that it is very expensive to wage war and very wasteful. Also, nation building rarely works out well.

You, as the totalitarian ruler of your nation, will have one recourse to avoid me sending in drones or long-range missiles to vaporize whatever palace or bunker you hole up in: Engage me in a three-out-of-five thumb war. You will present yourself at the appointed time to the deck of one the United States’ proud aircraft carriers as it floats in international waters, where you and your entourage will be unarmed, while my entourage will be bristling with weapons.

If you defeat me in the thumb war, you can go your merry way back to your nation and the United States won’t personally harass you for the rest of my term in office. If you lose, you will abdicate immediately and head immediately for some country that is willing to harbor you; if you don’t, my people will riddle you with holes right then and there on the deck of the carrier.

I like to keep things simple.


All Things Are NOT Equal

There is a tendency among many white people to get mad when someone is called out for saying something that is considered a racial slur, such as “nigger-rigged” or “towel head” or “an illegal” or whatever. It’s not that they necessarily deny the fact that such terms have racist or bigoted overtones, but they try to deflect and blunt the accusations of insensitivity by pointing to other terms.

They’ll argue, “Well, it’s just as racist to say [dago, kike, mick, honky, etc.] as it is to say those other things, but where’s the outrage when those terms are used?”

First off, let’s stop with the false equivalency.

Black and Hispanics are routinely targeted by police and punished more severely than whites for the same or similar crimes. People of color are routinely passed over for jobs or promotions for no other reason than the color of their skin. They are often given worse healthcare and less attention in school and get denied housing far more often than whites. I could go on, but either you recognize these things or you stubbornly insist they aren’t true, so I’ll stop.

Point is, a racial or ethnic slur related to a group that is routinely shat upon is inherently worse than one directed at a group that is far less antagonized and has much more privilege.

A slur at a Jewish person still carries a lot of weight, because there are seriously violent anti-Semitic folks around still. However, they still fall slightly down the severity list (at least in North America) from slurs against folks like blacks, Latinos and Muslims.

As for Italian-Americans, Irish-Americans and other such groups for which there are colorful slurs, how often are those groups actually discriminated against in this country? Particularly in comparison to non-whites.

You throw around the N-word, and you’re throwing around something volatile. Call me a “honky,” and that hardly even registers; it certain won’t hurt my feelings. You might as well call me a “ninny” or a “weirdo” or a “geek.”

Wouldn’t it be better…far better…to work toward everyone in the country actually being treated the same based on their personalities, behaviors, skills, etc. regardless of color, ethnicity or religion rather than trying to make like slurs against people who have the upper hand are anywhere remotely equivalent?

Because when you do that, or point out to me that “gyp” is a slur (derived from Gypsy)…and yes, I do try to catch myself before speaking that word, and I haven’t used “Indian giver” in ages…when you do those kinds of things and say they’re just as bad (when was the last time you even met someone who strongly identified as a Gypsy?), I can only think one thing. You know you’re wrong, and you’re getting defensive.

I’m not saying any slur is good.

But stop trying to say they’re all equal.

At least until there’s actually equal treatment and equal opportunity in this country.


Yes…Another Blog

For various and sundry reasons, many of them involving my wife’s urgings and the notion that I might be able to capitalize on the growing daddy-blogging phenomenon, I have a new blog (but it won’t be replacing this one; I’m not dropping any existing blogs any time soon). My wife was too late to get in on the ground floor of the mommy blogging thing (though she’s still managed to get named to the top-100 mom blog list at in both of the past two years), and we’re hoping that aside from giving me another outlet to teach (and learn) online, maybe that will be the blog that starts generating at least some small amount of income one day around this house.

So, with two blogs already under my Deacon Blue persona, this one and Tales of the Whethermen, I now add a third, which will both seriously and irreverently tackle the ups and downs of being a parent to my very headstrong and too-smart-for-my-own-good daughter, and which is called Raising the Goddess. And that’s on top of the blog I have to maintain for my primary journalism job, and the two-and-half sex-oriented blogs I keep separate from the Deacon Blue persona and my actual identity as Jeff Bouley…editor, writer, husband, father, adventurer, scholar, humanitarian…uhhh…sorry, got carried away there.

Please visit Raising the Goddess often. It won’t be some saccharine parenting blog, though it also won’t be quite as sharp-tongued or foul-mouthed as I sometimes get around here (though I did swear several times in the first post over there). It’s very much in the same spirit and tone as Holy Sh!+ from Deacon Blue, just with way more daddy issues and a lot more of Little Girl Blue.


A Love Limerick for Valentine’s Day

There once was a woman named Shay
Whom I’ve loved through night and through day

She’s put up with me
For fourteen and three

And I’ll adore her ’til I go to my grave


Liberals hate free speech

I know a lot of folks, especially conservatives, think I’m a flaming leftie, but the truth is that while I lean heavily leftward, I’m not a liberal. Not that there’s anything wrong with being liberal. Lots of great things about them. Left-wingers (hard-core liberals), though…well, they creep me out just about as much as serious right-wingers.

My biggest complaint most days with left-wingers is their approach to free speech, which seems to go something along the lines of: “People should be able to say whatever they want, as long as it can’t possibly offend anyone else (except maybe white, male right-wingers).”

The problem with that attitude is that just about anything you say can piss someone off. I’m sure if I say, “The sky is blue,” some goldamned science geek with a chip on his shoulder will remind me it’s all about the wavelengths of light allowed through the atmosphere and only an idiot would think the sky has a color. And when you start talking about important things, like politics, social reform, sexuality, race and gender relations, religion and so on…well, the chances of pissing people off increases.

To fend this off, the left wing folks like to tell us that lots of words and attitudes are off-limits, and then create a slew of new words and new rules that no one can ever keep up with, ensuring that nobody knows what the hell to say anymore or who it’s going to irritate. They stifle free speech by making communication into babble.

Sure, we can pretty much mostly agree that the N-word is pretty much off-limits to most folks, especially white ones. Even white ones, like me, who are married to people with brown skin.

It’s pretty clear that “cunt” is a word that should be reserved for sexual escapades in which the two of you are really fired up with the nasty talk about each other’s body parts.

But, really, what was wrong with the term “mentally retarded?” People used it in idiotic ways, but isn’t it just a matter of time before someone finds a way to misuse “developmentally delayed?” And is that term even accepted anymore?

If you’re blind, deaf or paralyzed, you’re not “differently abled” or “handi-capable.” You have a handicap or disability. That’s a fact of life. You can still excel and still deserve respect, but let’s not sugar-coat the fact you are at a disadvantage in many ways compared to if all your body parts worked as evolution intended.

And then terms like “cis-gendered” suddenly appear, and I’m still confused about what that one means, because people seem to use it in different ways depending on their sexual orientation. And what is the accepted replacement for “cross dresser” or “transvestite” these days? I write about sexual issues regularly and judge almost no one except pedophiles and rapists, and even I don’t know what the term is now for dressing like the other gender usually does…or the “right” terms for a slew of other gender and sexual inclinations, for that matter.

And “history” and the extreme feminists! They’ll slam you by saying it means “his story” and then they start saying “herstory,” even though the etymology of the word history doesn’t have anything to do with gender. It’s a coincidence. Maybe if I get an abdominal injury I should complain about my “hisnia” so that no one thinks I have a feminine problem.

I’m a sensitive guy who takes great pains to communicate clearly and level-headedly most days, and I have the added benefit of being a writer and editor to add to my skill sets. When even I don’t know what to say a lot of the time for fear of stepping on someone’s toes because some group feels overly empowered or perceives itself to be oppressed when it isn’t…well, I know the left wing has gone too far to try to tell us how to talk, and free speech isn’t so much free as it is frazzled.

Say what you will about the right-wingers (and yes, they still put down free speech at times with certain races and groups), but overall they don’t try to tell you what to say. If they don’t like it, some of them may threaten you, beat you up or kill you for what you said, but at least they’ll defend your right (mostly) to say it first.


Conservatives Hate Workers

OK, admittedly, people on the right-wing of political ideology don’t hate workers. They love them for the labor they bring and the way they fill the pockets of the owners of businesses. They just hate them being able to make an actual living or have any rights.

Apparently, conservative working-class folks hate themselves if they follow the accepted wisdom of right-wing leaders and pundits.

Here’s why…

On the one hand, conservatives don’t want the government enforcing minimum wage standards or, many times, things like workplace safety or equal treatment (remember, women still make about 3/4 of what men do in terms of wages, even though they’ve been doing equivalent work for decades).

On the other hand, they also try to stamp out labor unions, making them out to be socialist plots or anti-corporate bullies. Therefore, workers can’t band together to protect themselves.

So, what they’re saying is that government shouldn’t look out for workers, and workers also shouldn’t have any private recourse (even though conservatives are always crowing about how we can make our own ways and succeed on tenacity and…oh…the private market always works for everyone’s benefit…bwah ha ha hah ha ha ha…)

Essentially, the right-wing folks want just enough government to put down workers and keep them in their place as wage-slaves, but not enough to ever put corporations in their place.

The reason government is involved in things like this is because of the propensity employers have for screwing over workers. For the same reason, government is involved in things like fair trade and corporate regulation because companies have a propensity for screwing over consumers and the environment.


Unrestrained Geekery: Darth Vader vs. Magneto

I’ve never made any mystery of the fact I’m a nerd and/or a geek (depending on the circumstances, the subject/topic and the point of view of anyone observing me; I have never, however, ever been a dork…let’s get that straight).

Despite this, I try not to let it hang out too much here, since most readers coming here probably aren’t all that nerdy or nerd-subject-sympathetic. To expound nerdily too often here would kind of be like a porn star whipping out his nine- or ten-inch erect dick frequently—under the right conditions, it makes perfect sense, but in most circumstances, it would just be rude.

However, I broke up violently with Facebook last year, and thus no longer have an account there, so I cannot comment at this thread on Facebook about who would win in a fight between Magneto and Darth Vader. Since I cannot comment there, I will discuss this all-important issue here until I have it out of my system. Feel free to leave now if you wish. If you are a nerd or geek, however, please read on and then respond in the comments.

Darth Vader vs. Magneto

General characteristics of the combatants:

Magneto – Control over magnetism. Can lift and manipulate ferrous metals and objects containing significant concentrations of ferrous metals. Has a helmet that blocks psychic powers. He’s a genius, strategically and scientifically. Has incorporated metal fibers in costume so that he can levitate and fly.

Darth Vader – Control over the dark side of the Force allows him to employ telekinesis, read surface thoughts and emotions of others, increase strength and agility, employ limited precognition, mentally influence the actions of others at times and possibly generate “Force lightning.” Also, very skilled in hand-to-hand combat, particularly with the lightsaber.

Analysis of combat scenarios:

Much was made in the Facebook thread I linked to above about how much of Darth Vader’s body is cybernetic…that he is “more machine now than man” as Obi-Wan Kenobi put it. I think that’s probably overstating the state of his body and might be somewhat metaphorical as well, but let’s assume that much of Darth Vader’s body is now metallic, and utilizing steel or some other ferrous metal.

In that case, Darth Vader is at a serious disadvantage. Magneto could literally twist the metallic parts of Vader’s body and cripple or kill him in seconds. Given his powers, Magneto could sense the metal in Vader’s body and know of that vulnerability, whereas Vader would have no way to know of Magneto’s powers. Even if Vader were trying to peer into Magneto’s mind, psychic powers via the Force don’t allow literal mind-reading, and Magneto’s helmet protects him from psychic intrusions.

That said, let’s not forget that before his body parts had to be replaced, Vader (when he was still Anakin Skywalker) survived for quite some time after having both legs severed and falling into molten lava. Likely he was in that predicament for hours before he was rescued by Darth Sidious, and given that ability to endure pain and injury, it is possible that Vader could survive an assault on the metallic parts of his body long enough to telekinetically crush a vital organ in Magento’s body or slice him in half with a lightsaber. Even doing a “force choke” by squeezing Magneto’s windpipe telekinetically would seriously inhibit Magneto’s ability to concentrate and use his magnetic powers.

So, a significant edge goes to Magneto in this scenario, though his victory isn’t assured. Much depends of who attacks first and with how much vigor.

But there are serious flaws with even believing this scenario would be accurate. Why would Vader’s cybernetic body parts have any significant amount of metal or perhaps even any metal at all? Given the use of hyperspace travel, blasters and other high-tech in the Star Wars universe, it seems far more likely that to prevent being weighed down and to provide maximum longevity and flexibility of the cybernetic components, they would be made of polymers, hardened ceramics or even more exotic materials. Even with 21st-century Earth technology, we’re rapidly moving beyond metal in prosthetics and such.  Also, remember that in Star Wars major healing is handled through bacta tanks, which use a healing liquid suspension rather than surgical or medicinal intervention, and lightsabers are based on crystalline technology. The use of exotic materials is widespread.

Also, Darth Vader’s armor (and that of the stormtroopers he commands) is clearly not metallic. This also suggests it is unlikely that his internal parts are metallic. Even his lightsaber probably uses little, if any, metal. Given the size of blaster rifles and the ease with which they are hefted, I suspect they don’t even use metal or use very little.

Yes, droids are metallic, and are often restrained or retrieved magnetically. But that’s a control issue. They are already mechanical, so carrying extra weight and having more rigidity isn’t as much a problem as with a living creature. And in order to move them around easier and to keep them from escaping your control, you’d want them to be manipulable by magnetic forces.

So, Vader probably isn’t metallic. Which means Magneto, in a best-case scenario, can only fling metallic objects at Vader. Vader will, of course, bat them away with the power of the Force or slice them to ribbons with his lightsaber.

Some have suggested that Magneto’s helmet will protect him from Force-choking and other telekinetic attacks, but this is ridiculous. The helmet is designed to block telepathic and mind control powers…things that reach into the psyche (not that the Force could influence his mind directly anyway, as it can only do that to the “weak-minded”). Telekinesis is the physical manipulation of objects with the power of the mind. And even if the helmet kept Vader from using a Force-choke somehow, Vader could drop a ton of debris on Magneto or fling him into a wall until he was pulp. Assuming, of course, he didn’t just slice him in half with the lightsaber. Remember, Vader is going to surpass Magneto for physical strength, endurance, speed and agility thanks to his ability to tap the Force.

So, chances are that Magneto is toast.


Keystone Congress

I’m not saying President Barack Obama is doing the best job ever of any recent president in office; however, considering what he inherited, he’s done pretty well, and even in his worst moments he’s more competent by far than George W. Bush administratively and in terms of foreign policy. Point is that I have my beefs at times with the Oval Office, even if one might assume from my liberal leanings that I worship at the altar of Obama.

Still, even when I’m not happy at the direction the president is going (or even the Supreme Court in a lot of recent decisions), the bulk of my ill-will is aimed squarely at the U.S. Congress. This is a body (both houses) that has become bloated, inefficient, corrupt, out of touch and deranged to extremes that I never could have imagined when I started voting back around 1986. To give you a taste of how I feel, how about some of these tweets from me over the past few days:

In other celebrity news, Fiscal Cliff and Debt Ceiling are going to have a child out of wedlock and also have a sex video coming out…

There aren’t enough video games these days that allow you to destroy nations or worlds. Time for a new MMPORPG called “U.S. Congress!”

I don’t have faith in U.S. Congress to pass a healthy turd anymore, much less any meaningful or useful legislation, budgets or anything else

31 Dec

Politicians elected to *serve*. Y’all get benefits most can only dream of. I give not 2 fucks if ya have to give up New Year’s & family time

This is a representative democracy; I’m a bit tired of Congress not actually representing most of its constituency while fellating top few %

Do I have this right? …Senate worked late and hard, and the House said, “Fuck y’all; we’re going to sleep & look at your shit in morning”

…nowwwwwwwwww, you might think I’m a bit cynical, jaded, fed-up, disillusioned and maybe even royally pissed off with the cock-up that is our federal legislature. Nothing could be farther from the…oh, wait, you’d be correct.

And yes, I level most of the blame in the past four years (well, 12, really, but we’ll focus on the worst third of that period) to the Republicans and their “We won’t support anything that could be seen as a victory for Obama, even if it’s actually kind of in our favor and even in line with our party’s philosophy” approach to governing. They’ve been whining, childish bastards willing to play games with the economy and people’s lives just to reclaim the White House and deep-throat corporate America and the uber-rich, and it sickens me. However, that said, the Democrats are just about as much in bed with corporate America as the Republicans, they can’t band together to save their lives, and they seem more than a bit aimless these days.

Basically, the U.S. Congress is kind of like the Keystone Cops from those old black-and-white silent films, where they tripped over each other and bungled everything. Only the Keystone Cops still seem to have it together more than our Keystone Congress does.

So, what do we do about it?

I don’t know. But I’ll tell you what. I’ll copy-paste an email forwarded to me by a family friend recently, because maybe it’s a good start for thinking about answers (no, I don’t know who it originates with, and it’s not my work nor have I even edited any part of what’s below):

Subject: Fw: Warren Buffet – please read…takes 1 minute

Warren Buffett, in a recent interview with CNBC, offers one of the best

quotes about the debt ceiling:

“I could end the deficit in 5 minutes,” he told CNBC. “You just
pass a law that says that anytime there is a deficit of more
than 3% of GDP, all sitting members of Congress are ineligible
for re-election.

The 26th amendment (granting the right to vote for 18 year-olds)
took only 3 months & 8 days to be ratified! Why? Simple!
The people demanded it. That was in 1971 – before computers, e-mail,
cell phones, etc.

Of the 27 amendments to the Constitution, seven (7) took one (1) year
or less to become the law of the land – all because of public pressure.

Warren Buffet is asking each addressee to forward this email to
a minimum of twenty people on their address list; in turn ask
each of those to do likewise.

In three days, most people in The United States of America will
have the message. This is one idea that really should be passed

Congressional Reform Act of 2012

1. No Tenure / No Pension.

A Congressman/woman collects a salary while in office and receives no
pay when they’re out of office.

2. Congress (past, present & future) participates in Social

All funds in the Congressional retirement fund move to the
Social Security system immediately. All future funds flow into
the Social Security system, and Congress participates with the
American people. It may not be used for any other purpose.

3. Congress can purchase their own retirement plan, just as all
Americans do.

4. Congress will no longer vote themselves a pay raise.
Congressional pay will rise by the lower of CPI or 3%.

5. Congress loses their current health care system and
participates in the same health care system as the American people.

6. Congress must equally abide by all laws they impose on the
American people.

7. All contracts with past and present Congressmen/women are void
effective 12/31/12. The American people did not make this
contract with Congressmen/women.

Congress made all these contracts for themselves. Serving in
Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers
envisioned citizen legislators, so ours should serve their
term(s), then go home and back to work.

If each person contacts a minimum of twenty people then it will
only take three days for most people (in the U.S. ) to receive
the message. Don’t you think it’s time?


If you agree, pass it on. If not, delete.
You are one of my 20+ – Please keep it going, and thanks

Deacon Blue is the blogging persona of editor and writer Jeffrey Bouley. The opinions of Jeff himself on this blog, and those expressed as Deacon Blue, in NO WAY should be construed as the opinions of anyone with whom he has worked, currently works, or will work with in the future. They are personal opinions and views, and are sometimes, frankly, expressed in more outrageous terms than I truly feel most days.

Jeff Bouley


Jeff Bouley

To find out more about me professionally, click here. To find out more about me generally, click here.



You can reach Deacon Blue/Jeff Bouley at



For my public profile, click here.


Tales of the Whethermen

My superhero fiction blog, click here


Raising the Goddess

My parenting blog, click here

Copyright Info and Images

For more about images used on this site, and copyrights regarding them, as well as usage/copyright information about my own writing as posted here, click here.

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March 2023

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