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Do We Really Need Guns?

October 7, 2017

Filed under: Health,Journalism,observations,Uncategorized,Wellness — Tags: , , , , — admin @ 7:22 am

Several neighbors on my street own guns. The subject comes up once in a while, when there is some kind of crime in our small town

It doesn’t happen very often, but I’m sure this weekend when we’re all out gardening or chatting over the back fence the topic will be mentioned since it’s the first full weekend since the carnage in Las Vegas.

My niece, who is still in her 20’s, owns 2 rifles which are locked in a gun safe until she takes them out for target shooting at a range near her home. I was surprised, and slightly dismayed, when I learned of her interest, but her parents approve so I keep my mouth shut -mostly.

At one time, my wife even suggested I get a gun. After police combed our neighborhood searching for an armed robber who decided the best spot to hide was in a neighbor’s back yard.

I declined, and will continue to decline as long as I live. I can see no point to them. I have no interest in shooting at a target or a deer. Although, they roam our neighborhood with impunity, eating anything that grows. As an avid gardener I consider them rats with long legs. But that’s a different issue.

I cannot foresee an instance where I would use a gun against someone who was threatening me or my family. I can only see that it would make the situation worse.

My dad was a WWII veteran and shot a gun many times, I’m sure, but we never had them around the house and in all my years I don’t remember the topic ever coming up for discussion. After all, he suffered from what we now call PTSD, and I doubt he had any interest in firing a rifle again.

And yes, I firmly believe the second amendment has been poorly interpreted and our Founding Fathers never meant that we should all have automatic weapons in our homes.

Over 60% of the gun deaths in this country are suicides and I can see no reason to make suicide easier.

I’m not saying suicide would be impossible without guns. Heavens knows when my wife’s best friend decided five years ago, to end her life with pills, there was nothing we could do, no matter how much we pleaded with her.

But I’d like to think that my neighbor two doors away, who I had a standing Wednesday lunch date with for the last two years, would still be alive, if he had not been able to take out a gun and blow his brains out early one Monday morning  three weeks ago.

Perhaps, without the NRA, my neighbor and I could have lunch again this week.

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CWAA: Can We All Agree™ – 10/7/17 edition

Can we all agree, the NRA has given Republicans permission to consider gun restrictions? I guess we should all feel grateful.

Can we all agree, the response from a majority of Americans is closer to  that of late-night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel?

Can we all agree, while most politicians only feel pressure to act when there is a mass shooting the real issue is guns and suicide?

Les Vegas memorial (LV Review Journal photo)

Les Vegas memorial
(LV Review Journal photo)

Can we all agree, Rex Tillerson will not be our Secretary of State much longer?

Can we all agree, now that Mr. Trump has apparently decided to abrogate the nuclear deal with Iran we will have to rely on European leaders to make the world safer?

Can we all agree Lin-Manuel Miranda has a way with words?

Can we all agree the Narcissist in Chief must have been feeling ignored, so he reached out to Democrats, seeking a new health care compromise? Will Chuck and Nancy give him another victory?

Can we all agree, between their lies about their own tax plan and the Bannon revolt, the GOP has some serious issues to confront in the coming year?

Can we all agree, it’s heartening to know that the courts are fighting back against Mr, Trump, his EPA chief Scott Pruitt and the rest of the lobbyists who run the department?

Can we all agree, the battle over birth control and the ACA has nothing to do with religion or abortion?

Can we all agree, no one really understands all the fuss about Harvey Weinstein’s bad behavior? I’m neither shocked nor surprised.

Can we all agree, The House of Representative budget bill is totally irrelevant except that it allows the Senate to possibly pass the measure and the tax plan with majority votes – which they don’t have yet?

Can we all agree, now that California will be a Sanctuary State in 2018, a lot more folks will encounter ICE agents at their front door?

Can we all agree, Americans, and Donald Trump , won’t figure out how much Hurricane Maria has destroyed in Puerto Rico, until we start to have drug shortages on the mainland?

Can we all agree, no-one seems to care that a Senate report confirms that the Russians hacked the 2016 election and continues to disrupt our electoral process?

Can we all agree, we all knew politicians were hypocritical but it was nice that Rep. Tim Murphy reminded us how duplicitous they really are?

Can we all agree, The Captains of American industry muster have been very proud when a former member of their club (Equifax)  was able to blame all his problems on a single employee?

Can we all agree, we’re glad the death rate from breast cancer is declining, but it would be even better is they could figure out the cause of the disease?

Can we all agree, Both Democrats and Republicans are to blame for gerrymandering but leaving it up the the Supreme Court will leave both sides unhappy?

Can we all agree, the aviation industry should be embarrassed by the Australian government’s final report on the fate of Malaysian Airlines flight 370?

Can we all agree, Tom Petty left us way too soon?

Can we all agree, It’s about time that a major US car maker realized electric cars are here to stay?

Can we all agree, we’re wondering if Monte Hall is offering someone a deal, right now?

Can we all agree, the only reason Mr. Trump hasn’t made a comment about the Catalonia independence vote, is that he has no idea where it is?

Can we all agree, we’ve all become immune to news of new data breaches and who has access to our personal information?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump has been surprisingly silent on the death of 4 soldiers in Niger?

and finally:

This week’s good read: The death of a man wrongly convicted and betrayed by the system

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CWAA: Can We All Agree™ – 9/23/17 edition

September 23, 2017

Happy 70th birthday to my brother, Joe. To many more.

Can we all agree, Sen. Mitch McConnell and President Trump never should have for pushed for a vote on the latest GOP bid to repeal the Affordable Care Act?

Can we all agree no one really expected John McCain to support the President and repeal the ACA? And Mr. Trump’s reaction was just as predictable.

Can we all agree, there’s no reason why the Department of Homeland Security waited two months to officially notify states  that they were targets of Russian hackers during the last election?

Can we all agree, passing a relief bill to help Puerto Rico recover from Hurricane Maria will not be as easy as it was for the City of Houston? Bankruptcy and the fact that they have no voting members in Congress are sure to complicate things.21761660_845717158932422_466224307571963743_n

Can we all agree, “dotard”  (for 8 points) was the clear winner in this week’s war of words between Mr. Trump and North Korean President Kim Jong-un?

Can we all agree the President’s pension for creating countries and words, continues to diminish his presidency?

Can we all agree, the world is watching public reaction to Uber’s license denial in London?

Can we all agree, HHS Secretary Tom Price, among others, just doesn’t seem to understand why the public is upset at his wasteful use of private jets?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump’s latest attempt at a travel ban may not have the legal problems his previous edicts did, but it is no less distasteful?

Can we all agree, whether it’s taxes, repealing the ACA, or defense spending the Senate doesn’t seem to have any problem defying the President?

Can we all agree, the Alabama senate race, might be a referendum on Mr. Trump, but he’s not making the choice easier for Republicans?

Can we all agree, as you might expect, The National Rifle Association’s reaction to new laws banning gun ownership to domestic abusers was to propose legislation making it easier for victims to obtain their own gun permits faster?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump’s call for assistance from allies in his battle against Iran, will fall on deaf ears?

Can we all agree, Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s leader, has  learned the hard way, that  you can’t avoid responsibility by blaming everything on an internet algorithm?

Can we all agree, despite White House spin, it’s clear that the President is a target in Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election?

Can we all agree, for most of us, investigating environmental crimes is more important that protecting the head of the EPA – on so many levels?

Can we all agree, it might be important to have an ambassador in South Korea, since it appears Mr. Trump wants to start WWIII in that part of the world?

Can we all agree, TV host Jimmy Kimmel’s impact on the latest effort to undo the ACA, should not be underestimated?

Can we all agree, it’s embarrassing that, a week after a disastrous quake in Mexico City, Mr. Trump finds time to tweet about the NFL and NBA, but has not even bothered to express sympathy?

Can we all agree, that fact that the latest ACA repeal bill, cut funds to states who voted against Mr. Trump, was a rather transparent political move?

Can we all agree, even some politicians seem concerned that the RNC is paying so much of Mr. Trump’s legal bill?

Can we all agree, it’s not tough to figure out why US tourism is down in 2017? In the same vein, would you want to ‘grow up’ here?

Can we all agree, the drumbeat against repeated blows to the head, created by tackle football continues on multiple levels?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump’s speech to the United Nations, gave North Korea every excuse it needed to justify making nuclear weapons?

Can we all agree, it’s horrifying to think a future July Fourth parade might become a military display?

Can we all agree, if Donald Trump Jr. does not want secret service protection, so he can embarrass himself quietly, he should be allowed to refuse it?

Can we all agree, the administration can try to hide the real contributions of immigrants to this country, but everyone knows the truth?e0d162b22c26a36b7ab134b49f9e8b38-3899-3340-70-8-cd21d189e28d4aeeaddc44c36d03acde_p

Can we all agree, Rep. Nancy Pelosi may be scoring political wins in Washington, but she’s no fan favorite on her home turf?

Can we all agree, the Emmy’s proved there simply is not enough time to watch all the great TV being broadcast? And a new season starts this week…

Can we all agree no one wanted to see Sean Spicer at the Emmy’s.

Can we all agree, shrinking our national monuments, to allow for more oil and gas production is simply the wrong message to send to the world?

 

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CWAA: Can We All Agree™ – 8/12/17 edition

August 12, 2017

Can we all agree, many of us never thought the Chinese president would be the grownup in the room, refereeing the war of words between a US President and the leader of North Korea?

Can we all agree, it’s tough to predict an outcome when you have two egomaniacal bullies hurling insults at each other?

Can we all agree the folks on Guam probably are not comforted by Mr. Trump’s promise of retaliation, if the island is attacked?

We all make mistakes, but Can we all agree we'd like to think this was on purpose.

We all make mistakes, but Can we all agree we’d like to think this headline  was printed  on purpose.

Can we all agree, most of us have been so preoccupied with North Korea we hardly noticed that, despite the billions of dollars spent after Katrina, New Orleans flooded again this week after a severe thunderstorm?

Can we all agree, the longer we ignore climate change reports, the more stories like New Orleans, we will see?

Can we all agree, sometime in the next year the EPA will effectively cease to exist?

Can we all agree, while we should be concerned about what’s happening in Venezuela,  we can’t invade every country, where we disagree with the government’s policies?

Can we all agree, the White House may not openly condone the activities of the alt-right, but the fact that an administration aide can pen a memo describing a leftist conspiracy, certainly provides support?

Can we all agree, Google made a bad situation worse this week, when they fired the author of a memo attacking women working in Silicon Valley? We may not agree with his comments, but he has every right to his opinion.

Can we all agree, it’s hard to tell if sports reporters are over-reacting to the cancellation of some  high school football programs, or if we are really seeing the start of a death spiral?

Can we all agree, Major League Baseball deserves a pat on the back for their ‘nickname’ promotion later this month? Don’t expect to see anything like this in the NFL.

Can we all agree, it’s about time the highest levels of government admitted that we have an opioid crises in this country?

Can we all agree, the new twitter battle between Senate President Mitch McConnell and Mr. Trump, will do little to advance the GOP agenda?

Can we all agree, the FBI’s pre-dawn raid of former Trump campaign chief Paul Manafort, is very bad news for the President?

Can we all agree, despite all the rhetoric, it appears, the XL pipeline may be stymied by state regulations in Nebraska?

Can we all agree, state politicians, like those in Wisconsin, don’t care how much tax money they give away, as long as they can say they brought in new jobs?

Can we all agree, President Trump should take a close look at what’s happening to his good friend Benjamin Netanyahu, as he tries to downplay the special counsel’s investigation?

Can we all agree, Disney may be making the right business decision, by taking their movies off Netflix, but they are making it  more difficult for the consumer?

Can we all agree, we should be very concerned that industry lobbyists are re-writing the nation’s regulatory framework?

Can we all agree, it’s been another tough trip home for many GOP politicians?

Can we all agree, coal mining should not be encouraged on public land?

Can we all agree, Vice President Mike Pence is running for his boss’s job? He just doesn’t like to have it made public.

Barbara Cook

Barbara Cook

Can we all agree, voting for Amy McGrath over Mitch McConnell is a pretty easy decision?

Can we all agree, the Democrat’s shift to the left will not help them in conservative states, even where voters are appalled by Donald Trump?

Can we all agree, it appears the only world leader Mr. Trump does not stand up to, is Vladimir Putin?

Glen Campbell

Glen Campbell

Can we all agree, White House aides should not be making news at speaking engagements? If they can’t take the criticism, they should not have agreed to appear.

Can we all agree, the world is just a little less  lyrical this week with the passing of Glen Campbell and Broadway singer Barbara Cook.

and finally:

Only in America could Back to School shopping get combined with guns sales.

 

 

 

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CWAA: Can We All Agree™ – 7/2/17 edition

July 2, 2017

A day late, but hopefully, not a pound short.

Can we all agree, we should all be nervous about the administration’s request for voter data from the states and appalled that they don’t seem to understand why state officials are declining the demand?

Can we all agree, as the nation’s fertility rate declines any rational person realizes we need to change our attitude toward immigration?

Can we all agree, the GOP’s latest failure to pass a health care reform bill has left many Americans in the worst possible position – unable to plan for the future?

Can we all agree it's hard to understand why these opponents of Mr. trump's health care plan would agree to this picture? (AP photo)

Can we all agree it’s hard to understand why these opponents of Mr. Trump’s health care plan would agree to this picture? (AP photo)

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump has not been any help to Mitch McConnell?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s about face on health care shows his desperation and makes passage even more remote?

Can we all agree most voters don’t really understand ‘CBO scores,’ and don’t really care since they know what the impact of the Republican bill would be?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump’s needless fight with two cable TV commentators has revealed the alternative universe inside the White House?

Can we all agree, the National Rifle Association’s latest ad campaign should outrage every American as it incites violence, simply to encourage gun ownership?

Can we all agree, anyone who doesn’t think a grandparent  constitutes a ‘bona fide’ relationship should ask one?

Can we all agree, next week’s G-20 summit should be quite the show for Mr. Trump, Germany’s Angela Merkel and Russia’s Vladimir Putin?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump is oblivious to the fact that most of the world is laughing at him?

Can we all agree, Hong Kong is at pivotal crossroads as it celebrates 20 years since the British relinquished control?

Can we all agree, each week EPA administrator Scott Pruitt is allowed to stay in office we get closer to environmental disaster?

Can we all agree, Paul Manafort never should have been allowed to run any political campaign?

Can we all agree, it’s not the  $2.7 billion fine from the EU that worries Google, but the threat to their business model?

Can we all agree, the NSA, needs to admit they have screwed up and start helping people combat the hacking tools the agency created?

Can we all agree, the newfound friendship between Mr. Trump and Indian Prime Minister Modi will only last as long as Mr. Modi bows to all Mr. Trump’s demands?

Can we all agree, Germany’s rejection of visas for the body-guards/thugs who wanted to accompany Turkey’s dictator on a state visit, suggest the criminal charges brought in the US may have an impact after all?

Can we all agree, the latest report on the rise in sea level caused by increased carbon emissions makes our government’s position on the environment increasingly absurd?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump has created his own echo chamber to support his egomaniacal positions?

Can we all agree, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has become a non-entity on the world stage?

Can we all agree, Serena Williams had a near perfect return for John Mcenroe’s sexist serve?

Can we all agree, gun control supporters were left a bit confused this week as the Supreme Court allowed a California law on ammunition to stand but a lower court issued an injunction preventing the law from going into effect?

Can we all agree, no one is looking forward to stricter airport security rules ?

Can we all agree,  the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences should be congratulated for their bid to diversify their membership, even if it’s a few years late?

and finally:

A good news story about the heroic actions of a major league umpire.

and

An airline story that might restore your faith in the industry.

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CWAA: Can We All Agree™ – 4/1/17 edition

April 1, 2017

Can we all agree, this Holocaust survivor in Sacramento, had the perfect retort to the head of the immigration service who was trying to defend the new immigration policies?

Can we all agree it’s remarkable, that we have an Attorney General who doesn’t seem to know federal law very well?

Can we all agree Mississippi State showed why we love college sports, when they upset The University of Connecticut, ending the team’s 111-game winning streak?

First rose of the season in my garden: Sombreuil

First rose of the season in my garden: Sombreuil

Can we all agree, there is no law against being rich, but the wealth, and lack of ethics in our new leadership team, puts to rest the notion that Donald Trump is draining any swamps in Washington?

Can we all agree the White House Press Secretary is desperately trying to divert attention from the Russian scandal that has now fully engulfed the White House?

Can we all agree, despite Senate promises of a full investigation of the White House ties to Russia, most Americans want a truly independent probe?

Can we all agree the startling rise in opioid deaths is a national health crises that needs to be addressed, before it becomes a ‘fact of life’ like the murder rate from guns?

Can we all agree it’s pretty clear the wrong person is running the Food and Drug Administration, when he has to recuse himself from decisions involving over 20 health care firms, because he has a conflict of interest?

Can we all agree Elon Musk’s reusable rocket technology is pretty remarkable?

Can we all agree, if news reports are to be believed, Rex Tillerson, our Secretary of State, seems lost, and that’s just what Mr. Trump wants?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump’s trade policy seems to change direction like the wind? On the eve of the Chinese President’s visit to Mar A Lago, he’s threatening a trade war, while he backs off his campaign promise to rip up  NAFTA?

Can we all agree the Democrats are committed to making the appointment of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court difficult, as retribution for Mitch McConnell’s handling of the Merrick Garland nomination?

Can we all agree Venezuela has descended into chaos? Too bad the refugees trying to escape will not be welcomed here.

Can we all agree the Russians protesting the dictatorship of Vladimir Putin have no chance of forcing any changes?

Can we all agree it’s tough to take the continuing California drought warnings too seriously with the Sierra snowpack at 167% of normal?

Can we all agree, no Bay Area resident would disagree with polls showing many millennials want to leave because of high costs and traffic congestion?

Can we all agree there is no reason why Michael Flynn should be given immunity from prosecution, especially since no one expects he would tell the truth anyway?

Can we all agree, it’s good to see the suit against Trump University might allow defrauded students to get back almost 90% of what they paid, but we were kind of rooting for the plaintiff who wanted more, including an apology from Mr. Trump?

Can we all agree the North Carolina Legislature seems to have fooled everyone into thinking they actually changed their bathroom law?

Can we all agree  California Rep. Devin Nunes was a willing dupe in the White House’s plan to plant evidence supporting Mr. Trump’s wiretapping claims?

Can we all agree Chelsea Clinton needs to get used to people who doubt her claims that she will not run for office, especially when she continues to make public political statements?

Can we all agree public opinion on the change in internet privacy restrictions is really a generational divide with Baby Boomers worried about their data and younger people assuming everything they do on line is public anyway?

Can we all agree, as the battle over the Affordable Care Act continues Health Secretary Thomas Price will slowly chip away at coverage, while more GOP governors seem to have realized the ACA might help residents in their states?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s attempts to threaten the Freedom Caucus for their failure to support health care reform, just shows his political inexperience? Even the Democrats are laughing.

Can we all agree that the prison sentences handed out to aides of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie send a clear message to politicians everywhere (including the White House) about what the public finds acceptable?

Can we all agree, it makes no difference whether Ivanka Trump is paid or not, she should not be advising the President and running her company at the same time?

Can we all agree, it’s pretty funny seeing Mr. Trump using Bill Clinton’s defense trying to avoid a sexual assault lawsuit while he’s President?

Can we all agree, the thought of Mr. Trump throwing out the first pitch on Opening Day was too precious? Almost as fanciful as the thought of a second Trump hotel in Washington.

Can we all agree the women’s USA Hockey team struck a blow for equality this week?

Can we all agree, Maxine Waters and April Ryan did much the same in their own ways?

Can we all agree it doesn’t look like England’s exit from the EU will be as smooth as Theresa May had hoped?

Can we all agree Hong Kong has now officially lost it’s battle to remain a democracy?

Can we all agree that Mr. Trump’s moves to undo Mr. Obama’s clean air plan will do nothing to bring back coal jobs, do nothing to make America great again, give the rest of the world an excuse to follow suit and do nothing but allow our climate to change permanently?

and finally:

If you are really depressed about Alec Baldwin’s decision to cut back on his appearances on SNL, take a look at this compilation of the past year’s political sketches.

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CWAA: Can We All Agree – 1/7/17 edition

January 7, 2017

Can we all agree Vladimir Putin was masterful in abusing our electoral system?

Can we all agree this won’t be the last time Russia will use cyber-attacks to alter the course of world events?

Can we all agree it’s amazing that the only person who doesn’t believe it, is Donald Trump? Even the Russians celebrated.

15940446_1430617696950822_8444219393828689282_nCan we all agree his Saturday morning tweet storm urging closer relationship with Russia makes him seem even more desperate?

Can we all agree, the fact that Mr. Trump cited world fugitive Julian Assange as his source for doubting the intelligence report, is just absurd?

Can we all agree that once again it appears that Mr. Trump’s ego, just can’t deal with the fact that he received 3 million fewer votes than Hillary Clinton and that Mr. Putin helped  him win in the electoral college?

Can we all agree new polls showing Trump supporters are counting on Democrats to stop the new president, show an amazing lack on confidence in their own candidate?

Can we all agree the GOP has reached new levels of hypocrisy as they appear prepared to accept a $1 billion budget deficit just to get rid of The Affordable Care Act?

Can we all agree it’s starting to look unlikely that the Senate will approve a repeal of President Obama’s signature accomplishment, unless they have a plan to replace it? Even Mr. Trump seems to have doubts.

Can we all agree, we knew all along we’d be paying for any wall built along our  border with Mexico?

Can we all that 75 consecutive quarters of job growth would be an accomplishment for any president, but coming after the worst recession in 5o years deserves special recognition?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump may be the first president who will be forced to deal with non-political legal issues throughout his term?

Can we all agree, many civil servants will have second thoughts about working for the federal government now that the House has resurrected an obscure law allowing their pay to be cut by Congress?

Can we all agree the House has done an embarrassingly good job at getting us all to focus on ethics? Too bad Mr. Trump doesn’t.

Can we all agree, now that Rex Tillerson has taken a $180 million buyout from Exxon Mobil, we’re sure their interests will not color any decision he makes as secretary of state? Yeah, right.

Can we all agree naming a Wall Street lawyer to head the SEC just guarantees that no-one will be watching anything that happens in the financial markets?

Can we all agree Vice-President Joe Biden had the best quote of the week?

Can we all agree the first thing Mr. Trump should do is stop trying to make policy via Twitter?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump will learn pretty quickly that he can’t just bully every company in America to get his way. – especially since, in most cases, his comments had nothing to do with their decision?

First responders provide protection for passengers outside Fort Lauderdale airport, yesterday. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

A first responder provides protection for passengers outside Fort Lauderdale airport, yesterday. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Can we all agree, he can’t even wish everyone a happy new year without creating a controversy?

Can we all agree Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has shown, once again, that he has no respect for the constitution or for governing, by scheduling cabinet nomination hearings on consecutive days, although most nominees have not even filed disclosure forms or passed routine background checks?

Can we all agree that might not help Attorney General nominee Jeff Sessions, who seems to be stretching the truth and  is facing protests from the NAACP, as well as law school professors across the nation?

Can we all agree some states seem to have found a novel way of keeping Mr. Trump off the 2020 ballot?

Can we all agree it won’t take long before the State of California and the federal government battle in court?

Can we all agree there will be no real cease-fire in Syria until all the rebels have been eliminated and Assad is firmly in power once again?

Can we all agree that New York Governor, and probable presidential candidate Andrew Cuomo, has unofficially launched his campaign by proposing free tuition to any NY resident accepted at a state school? (With Bernie Sanders by his side, no less)

Can we all agree, that while the US debates abandoning the Paris Accords, China is moving ahead  of us with a  commitment to renewable energy?

Can we all agree banning the simultaneous shipment of guns and ammunition on an airplanes seems like a logical solution too prevent massacres like what happened in Fort Lauderdale this week, but it will never happen?

And finally:

You can now fact check Mr. Trump’s tweets by following the Washington Post’s new  weekly feature.

and

If you want to know what we will be missing watch the First Lady’s final public speech.

Just to prove no topic is too mundane from Mr. Trump take a look at his Twitter battle with the former California Governor over the latest edition of The Apprentice.

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CWAA: Can We All Agree – 9/24/16 edition

September 24, 2016

Can we all agree the root of all our race -related problems is the fact that no white person in America can really understand the Black-American experience? But maybe, the opening of the African American Museum today is a first step.

Can we all agree that whether or not the victims in Charlotte or Tulsa had weapons the real issue is police training which teaches officers to use lethal force as a first choice?

The new African American Museum in Washington, D.C. (Washington Post photo)

The new African American Museum in Washington, D.C. (Washington Post photo)

Can we all agree, if there were fewer guns on American streets a police officer’s job might not be so difficult?

Can we all agree we’ve all become too complacent about computer hacks that reveal our personal information? Rather than demanding more security we are all eager to believe computer security firm’s claims that they can protect us-after the fact.

Can we all agree that Congressional questioning of Wells Fargo and Mylan executives is political grandstanding at its finest, since there is no movement for any action against either firm?

Can we all agree, speaking of political grandstanding, the testimony of IRS commissioner John Koskinen probably was not what the GOP hardliners expected, when Democrats focused on Mr. Trump’s alleged IRS audit?

Can we all agree the debate by House and Senate members to override the President’s veto of a bill allowing  9/11 lawsuits against Saudi Arabia will be more of the same?

Can we all agree that CNN’s decision to, allow former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski, to accept payment from the campaign while he is a commentator for the network, flies in the face of journalistic integrity?

Can we all agree, whether we like Facebook or not, Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan, deserve some praise for their $3 billion commitment to global health?

Can we all agree the Syrian cease-fire is over because the Russians and Syrian government were looking for an excuse to end it from the beginning?

Can we all agree Donald Trump’s reaction to this week’s incidents in Tulsa and Charlotte will probably drop his support among black voters from 3% to zero?

Can we all agree Hillary Clinton probably breathed a sigh of relief when it became clear no more of her State Department emails would be released before the election?

Can we all agree that Donald Trump Jr.’s comments about refugees and skittles shows that he doesn’t understand either the plight of refugees or basic statistics?

Can we all agree Monday’s first Presidential debate should be must  see TV, even for football fans in Atlanta and New Orleans?

Can we all agree the reaction of the two candidates to the New York and NJ bombings pretty much sums up our choices in the election?

Can we all agree that Ted Cruz’ endorsement of Mr. Trump is political opportunism at its finest?

Can we all agree that neither candidate will probably mention a new study which seems to show immigrants are not taking American jobs?

Can we all agree that regardless of the outcome in the New Jersey ‘Bridgegate’ trial, Chris Christie’s 15 minutes of fame are over?

Can we all agree that it’s rather amazing to discover that we all have a common group of ancestors?

Can we all agree it’s hard to believe  the United States is one of the few countries in the world where maternal mortality has not decreased in the last 10 years?

and finally:

Can we all agree Stacy Koltiska deserves some praise for resigning her job rather than refuse meals to children?

or

In case you were wondering what this week’s fall equinox really meant, you can find all you need to know, right here.

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CWAA: Can We All Agree – 9/17/16 edition

September 17, 2016

Can we all agree Donald Trump’s admission that President Obama was indeed born in the United States, typifies everything that’s wrong with the GOP nominee’s campaign? I wonder what President Obama might be thinking.

Can we all agree that he should apologize to the President and to the American people?

Can we all agree the members of the press have not really acquitted themselves well this campaign season, but they don’t deserve the treatment Mr. Trump has heaped on them?

Can we all agree The President seems to enjoy campaigning against Mr. Trump?

Can we all agree that, unfortunately, Mr. Trump’s children seem to have inherited the same  genetic predisposition for exaggeration, lies and avoidance, that their father has?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump even makes waves when he attends events he’s been invited to? Luckily some members of the press are  starting to point out his lies.

Can we all agree that you have real problems if you’re the GOP candidate  and can’t secure the endorsement of one of the nation’s most conservative newspapers?

Can we all agree even his policy statements don’t make sense? Even Trump doesn’t seem to understand his family leave plan. Maybe that’s why he keeps making outrageous suggestions.

Can we all agree it’s hard to believe the race is so close? Could it be, because gender matters, or maybe, can we all agree, it’s not that bad?

Can we all agree there should be a special place in hell for police officers and  politicians who are urging violence if their candidate does not win the race for the White House?

Can we all agree there has been an awful lot written about the health of two candidates who say they are fine?

Can we all agree it’s about time some governmental agency investigated  some of Trump’s activity?

Can we all agree that Congress seems to be finding new ways to make themselves look foolish by passing bills the President says he will veto?

Can we all agree, there may be pockets of the country where displaced workers cannot find jobs, but, by and large, the numbers say the economy is vastly better than the GOP would have us believe?

Can we all agree it’s nice to have a new  Congressional Librarian who is actually a trained librarian?

Can we all agree, speaking of librarians, it’s hard to believe that the University of New Hampshire is using a quarter of a $4million bequest from their former librarian for a sports scoreboard?

Can we all agree the new front in the cyber-battle with Russia sounds a lot like the old Cold War?

Can we all agree Vladimir Putin seems committed to using computers to wreak havoc in any area where he feels the country has been wronged – including the Olympics?

Can we all agree it’s nice to hear Mr. Obama say he wants to increase the number of Syrian refugees allowed to enter the US, but he won’t be in any position to carry out his order?

Can we all agree it’s surprising that there has been so little commentary about the new 10-year deal to supply military aid to Israel?

Can we all agree it’s possible US troops were sent to Northern Syria to referee the battle between Turkey and the Kurdish rebels?

Can we all agree it’s foolish for western democracies to complain about falling birth rates while refusing to admit new refugees?

Can we all agree it’s about time a president protected some of the Atlantic Ocean?

Can we all agree the NCAA and ACC should get some kudos for removing events from North Carolina because of the state’s ‘bathroom laws,’ but it doesn’t sound like state lawmakers care?

Can we all agree that it appears the cease-fire in Syria may have quieted the guns, but did little to provide any food to the residents?

Can we all agree it’s tough to feel sympathy for Mark Zuckerberg who lost a zoning decision with thePalo Alto city council?

Can we all agree the folks at Samsung have badly mismanaged their phone recall?

Can we all agree Wells Fargo management can claim they did not condone what their employees did, but they set up the structures that encouraged the bad behavior? Anyone who has ever done business with the bank knows it.

Can we all agree that while political correctness on college campuses is getting out of hand, the fraternity at the University of Richmond deserves some serious criticism for their party invitation? I’ll admit, I’m not sure what to say about the University of California’s decision to cancel a Palestinian studies class.

Can we all agree the Marine Corps drill instructor who ordered a recruit into a clothes dryer deserves some kind of punishment?

Can we all agree that $100 million for another study of concussions is nice, but probably won’t do much to encourage parents to let their children play football?

Can we all agree the Bayer acquisition of Monsanto may signal the beginning of the end for GMO crops?

Can we all agree, we should all get a vote in which toy goes into the Toy Hall of Fame?

Captain Kirk's new battleship

Captain Kirk’s new battleship

Can we all agree that there is some kind of symmetry in having the Navy’s new futurist battleship launched on the eve of the 50th anniversary of Star Trek commanded by Captain Kirk?

and finally:

Let us all salute the Maryland bus driver who rescued 20 children from a burning school bus.

and

Maybe Mr. Trump is right and there should be no moderators at the first Presidential debate, just someone with a starter’s pistol to signal the beginning and end of the event.

and

Don’t forget to cheek where your favorite college is ranked.

and

RIP Edward Albee and W.P. Kinsella. I don’t want to guess which man is more well known.

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CWAA: Can We All Agree – 6/25/16 edition

June 25, 2016

Can we all agree, the long term impact of the Brexit vote is probably somewhere between the doom and gloom of the economists and the euphoric reaction of Donald Trump?

Can we all agree that only Mr. Trump could put it in context by telling us how good it will be for his Scottish golf course?

Can we all agree with the members of the major EU members: If the separation must happen it should be done quickly?

Can we all agree that it probably won’t have much impact on the election in the United States? There’s a big difference between leaving a political union and electing a racist egomaniac – more likely it will serve as a warning to Americans.

Bedlam in the US House. (AP photo)

Bedlam in the US House. (AP photo)

Can we all agree House Speaker Paul Ryan is probably wondering what he has to do toy get some headlines for any of his GOP platform plans?

Can we all agree the Democrat’s sit-in was the best social media  event of the political season?

Can we all agree the Democrats may not have won any votes on gun control measures but they have succeeded in framing the conversation and putting pressure on the GOP?

Can we all agree that Connecticut’s law limiting gun possession may become the template for other states now that the Supreme Court has upheld it?

Can we all agree the battle over California’s gun-control ballot measure will add some interest to the fall election?

Can we all agree this week’s New Yorker article may be the definitive look at guns in America? And if you don’t have time to read it catch Terry Gross’s interview with the author.

Can we all agree that George Lucas will have to make some changes in his approach if he wants to build a museum for his Star Wars art? Two cities have now rejected his initial plans.

Can we all agree the last thing the Brazil Olympics needed was a suspension of their drug testing laboratory?

Can we all agree it seems the list of athletes who will not be going to the Rio Olympics may be longer the list of who will be attending?

Can we all agree The GOP glee over the Supreme Court’s non-decision on the President’s immigration plan will be short lived if it costs them the Senate and the Presidency this fall?

Can we all agree that Bernie Sanders has pretty much lost all the leverage he thought he had over Hillary Clinton and the platform committee?

Can we all agree VW’s rumored $10b settlement with owners of diesel cars may be a bargain if it at least puts the issue to bed?

Can we all agree the wildfire burning east of Los Angeles could be the most serious fire no-one is paying attention to?

Can we all agree the owners of Justin Wines may have done everything growers should not do when they want to expand their vineyards?

Can we all agree it’s good to know the Marines finally got it right when they tracked down the real participants in the famous flag raising photo of Iwo Jima?

Can we all agree that, as far as the  Baltimore police are concerned, a ‘not guilty’ verdict does not mean the officers did not bear some responsibility for what happened to Freddie Gray.

Can we all agree we’re not  sure what the Supreme Court’s ruling on affirmative action really means?

Can we all agree the pilots of the plane which rescued two ill workers from the South Pole are worthy heroes of the week?

Can we all agree it will take public pressure to regulate the fracking industry now that the Supreme Court has delayed the EPA plan to regulate the use of public lands?

Can we all agree that, while it’s hard to believe, Mr. Trump hit a new low this week  in his pandering speech to Evangelicals ?

Can we all agree that the closing of the investigation into the 1964 murder of three Civil Rights workers is a sad end to an embarrassing chapter of American History?

Lebron James: NBA finals MVP but he won't be going to Rio Olympics.

Lebron James: NBA finals MVP but he won’t be going to Rio Olympics.

Can we all agree most of us never dreamed we would hear that the energy produced by California’s sooner-to-be-closed Diablo Canyon Nuclear plant could be replaced by alternative energy sources?

Can we all agree LeBron James deserved the MVP trophy in this year’s NBA finals series?

Can we all agree the USGA deserves all the scorn they have received for their mind-boggling decision in last weekend’s US Open Championship?

Can we all agree that Hillary Clinton is learning what GOP rivals learned the hard way: No matter what you say or do it’s difficult to keep Mr. Trump out of the headlines even if it’s because of  lies, bizarre interviews or  incompetence?

Can we all agree that Venezuela should now be considered a failed state?

and finally:

Can we all agree the courage of the rape victim in this story is remarkable?

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