With the 2020 election approaching fast, many Americans are thinking about how they will vote at the polls. This election cycle consists of intense interest, most of which is well deserved. The election will be a hotly contested one. Many dislike the Trump administration but can’t seem to find a replacement for him outside of the Democratic Party. However, the Presidential election should not block out another important issue: the reallocating of the 435 Congressional seats in the House of Representatives between the fifty states and the subsequent redistricting of said seats.
In 2018 I worked for 2,230.05 hours. An average of 46.46 hours per week for the 48 weeks I worked this year between February 1 and December 31. In the month of January, I was interviewing for the job I started in February.
I track my work hours meticulously. I am required to as part of my job at a law firm, even though I am not a lawyer.
In every hour that I worked this year, the government stole $12.48 from my paycheck. They then used that money to invade foreign countries, build bombs, and pay the salaries of people I do not trust.
This Tuesday, a horrifying but unsurprising announcement came from Yemen. Once again, a Saudi drone strike missed its target, this time blowing up part of a hospital. The blast killed seven people, of whom four were children. Among the dead are a health worker and the worker’s two kids.
In related news, the United States continued to help the Saudis with air force training. We’re supplying them with arms, training, and in some cases, ground troops that fought on the side of Al Qaeda. With the terrorist group’s own fighters joining a Saudi coalition and fighting alongside the United States, it’s clear that we are indeed on the same side as the terrorists in this particular battle. Moreover, an ever-increasing amount of information is proving that we fund the Saudis militarily and sell them weapons, but they don’t always actually pay us what they owe, leaving burdens on Americans. Moreover, the Department of Defense has failed to collect payments for plane fuel, placing even more wartime expenses on taxpayers. They continue to strike targets that we advise against, but we continue to aid and train them. In fact, I pay them personally.
By Jack Parkos | @refoundinfather
Recently, Nike’s new ad campaign “Just do it” was celebrating its 30-year anniversary. Nike chose former quarterback Colin Kaepernick as their spokesperson. This caused major controversy, upsetting conservatives who opposed his prior kneeling for the national anthem. This was a hot topic last year, and the campaign only brought it back.
The debate sparked as two sides asked very different questions. By taking a knee, was Kaepernick showing free speech? Was it an appropriate cause to protest? Or, was it disrespectful to veterans and active military? These questions were not only cultural questions but political as well. Many politicians got involved, and even the president was in on it. Trump, as usual, decided to take to Twitter to voice his thoughts.
The NFL players are at it again – taking a knee when they should be standing proudly for the National Anthem. Numerous players, from different teams, wanted to show their “outrage” at something that most of them are unable to define. They make a fortune doing what they love……
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 10, 2018
The irony of this is that back in 2013, Trump tweeted about Obama paying too much attention to the NFL.
President should not be telling the Washington Redskins to change their name-our country has far bigger problems! FOCUS on them,not nonsense
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 8, 2013
Trump’s second tweet, though hypocritical, has truth to it. Politicians need to stop focusing on nonsense. What football players do on the field is up to the NFL, not D.C. Of course, we can all (politicians included) can have an opinion on it, but this shouldn’t be an issue brought to the government. This should not decide who you elect.
More Important Things are Happening
While all of this occurred, Russia accused America of using white phosphorus bombs against civilian targets in Syria. This is banned by the Geneva Convention. Both sides of the Syrian Civil War have faced accusations of this, but the mainstream media rarely mentions it. Instead, they debate about what to do during the national anthem. Essentially, the media prioritized a song during a game over chemical warfare.
It is time for Fox and CNN to stop acting like ESPN and start focusing on the tragic losses of life that occur daily due to dangerous American foreign policy. The level of attention given to minor issues is blasphemous! Israel has nukes and Syria is more war-torn than ever, but the focus still goes to football players.
While it may seem crazy that this is happening, politicians love it. Think of all of the minor issues people debate over. Liberals and conservatives will go at it for hours debating about Trump and Stormy Daniels but never will mention that the Federal Reserve is inflating our currency and wrecking the economy. Congress passes bill after bill without reading them, but the people are debating about female superheroes.
Politicians love this because it is a great example of the divide and conquer tactic. They can easily pit the liberals and conservatives against each other on minor issues. They will hate each other so much, they won’t pay attention when Democrats and Republicans work together to increase the budget and further the debt. Note that none of these trivial issues affect the state in a significant way, regardless of the outcome. But as long as the state can keep the people occupied, they will not rise up against the government’s real injustices.
This is a threat to our freedom. The government is slowly slipping away our liberties not because they win the fight, but because nobody cares. Every day the debt goes up, but we keep talking about the national anthem protest. The people don’t realize how reckless American foreign policy is. Would they even notice the early signs of another war? More sickeningly, would they care? It’s a question we must ask, and it can be very hard to believe either to be true.
While issues like the national anthem protest deserve some media time, there are bigger, more important issues that should have the focus. What happens if the players do or do not kneel? Likely nothing. What happens if we continue to go into debt and constantly wage war overseas? We do not know for sure, but it will be worse than anything that could happen during the anthem.
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By Joshua D. Glawson | United States
Throughout the political world, a lack of integrity is often fostered for particular party agendas and cronyism more than for the actual, or even perceived, betterment of their respective constituents. These ethical inconsistencies tend to serve companies via cronyism and coercive monopolies, fill the pockets of politicians, get politicians reelected, and help to raise more funding for the political parties-but they can also harm other people. Rather than staying true to a principled ideology such as a Non-Aggression Principle, many politicians do what is seen as best for themselves and those they work closely with rather than the people the politician is meant to be “working for.”
Just What Is Political Integrity?
‘Integrity’ is touted as a value everyone should have, especially a good politician, if they even exist. For some reason, the word ‘integrity’ has shifted in meaning to something more of a strong moral uprightness that never sways from its subjective stance. We typically say that someone has integrity when they tell the truth about something even when it could hurt them, or when someone treats everyone with respect and dignity. Is this correct?
The word ‘integrity’ originates from the Latin word ‘integritatem’ meaning “soundness, wholeness, completeness,” and figuratively it means “purity, correctness, and/or blamelessness.” However, there is more to the word than simply being whole, or pure, in only a circumstance or two, it suggests that the person is consistently integral. In this sense, when someone is consistent, they are said to be standing firm after taking a position, while not ceasing or bending. The word ‘integrity’ has the same core meaning as ‘integer,’ meaning “intact, whole, and/or complete,” while figuratively it means “untainted, and/or upright.”
A Need for Consistency
Therefore, in order to have integrity, one must be consistent in their actions, not compartmentalized or fractioned, while appealing to a higher, nobler, moral standard or ethic. A person with integrity acts in respect to these principles equally throughout their personal life with everyone. So, can a politician have integrity?
In short, yes, a politician can have integrity, but it is much more difficult than what the mass public would like to impart. For a politician to be integral, they must be consistent in their higher moral or ethical stance and not differentiate or sway on that standing depending on the situation. Unfortunately, many people who claim the title of being politically-minded, whether layman or politician, will vary on their so-called principled stance depending on the situation they find themselves in.
Uncommon in American Politics
For example, an American politician will go to great lengths when speaking out against innocent lives being lost within the US, but when it comes to other deaths in other countries they remain silent. Better yet, many help to pass bills that just further the military complex. The same figurative politician may even explicitly state that they do not believe in war or the military industrial complex, while simultaneously implicitly helping to pass bills that provide more benefits for soldiers and military personnel, which in turn incentivizes perpetual growth of the military and the supposedly disdained war hawk behavior.
Even more commonly, the same politician will speak against theft between citizens, yet also advocate for government laws that coerce businesses and individuals, in general, to give to others as a form of “redistribution,” making it plunder of the highest degree. In each of these, the politician is not being consistent in their self-professed ideology, thusly contradicting and fractioned, making the politician lack integrity.
A Universal Ideal
Of course, the concept of ‘integrity’ applies to all people within each of our lives, not just in politics. The best way to self-assess whether you are being integral is to not only consider the consequences of your actions, but also the process by which you came to the consequence. It is also beneficial to discuss your ideologies and philosophy with others that can challenge or help to strengthen your understanding. Consider these ideas and ask yourself the following:
- Am I harming or threatening to harm myself or others with my actions?
- Do I appeal to a moral or ethical standard that does not infringe on the negative rights of others?
- Am I consistent in how I treat people in a moral or ethical manner?
- Do I act completely different around various people in order for them to like me, approve of me, or to not witness my alternate characteristics?
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