disillusionedby baldilocks

It’s an odd feeling to begin to believe that you wasted your youth. It’s what I’m beginning to believe about my own.

Back when I was a skinny little critter, I wasn’t popping out illegitimate babies or selling/smoking weed or selling/shooting heroin or streetwalking or being a groupie to sports/pop music icons. I spent my youth as an enlisted woman in the USAF, and held a compartmented security clearance during the last “battles” of the Cold War.

We won, they tell me.

My DD Form 214—Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty—states that I had these two specialties (jobs): 1) Germanic Crypto Linguist, and 2) Slavic Crypto Linguist, Russian. Long-term training is required for the languages alone; that part comes first. Then there’s the second part of the training, the classified part–the part which one doesn’t even get to experience if something icky is uncovered in the background check. (When that happens, the person is pulled out of training altogether and, if they are lucky, they’re assigned another specialty. Unluckiness gets one kicked out.)

In this other part of the training, we learned all about our security clearances, how to handle classified information, the penalties for mishandling classified information, and what to do when mistakes are made. This very pertinent information is instilled and measured–tested–before any sensitive information is revealed to us.

It isn’t rocket science and, if I recall correctly, it takes only a few days. Most of us had high school diplomas only or a bit of “higher” education and very few of us were over 25 years old. It’s true, however, that we qualified for the specialty because of our measured high ability to remember when to breathe and remember when not to.

After that, there was the job itself. Stressful at times, but the great thing about it was that we knew why we were doing it and we knew who our enemies were–or so it seemed at the time. And after the victory was won, it was comforting to have been a tiny part of that.

Again, so it seemed at the time.

It was good for my personal self-respect to know that I was capable of loyalty and able to keep a secret—and not just because I would go to jail if I didn’t, but because I had given my word. These days, this is called adulting.

There are a few who held the linguist specialty who broke their word; the one referenced in the link defected to East Germany, had to spend some time in prison and, poetically just, is stateless. (Allegedly, he’s here in the USA and is, I guess, just another illegal alien.)

The rest of us are proud of what we achieved…but, as I look at the Labor Day weekend sub rosa news, I wonder whether we really achieved anything.

Hillary Clinton, wife of a former US President, a former US Senator, a former US Secretary of State, and the 2016 Democrat Party nominee for US President herself, has blatantly and openly violated everything for which I and many of my oldest, dearest friends stood.

But she hasn’t been charged with any of the TENS OF THOUSANDS security clearance breaches which she knowingly and willfully committed. She says that she can’t remember anything about it.

My black ass.

And the worst thing is that the investigative arm of this government admits it and will do nothing. She won’t serve time for treason or spend any time stateless. And she knew that long ago, knew before the first server was planted in her house. And now, so do we.

I should have spent the 1980s smoking weed.

BTW: Day 25 of not smoking anything.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. (Her older blog is located here.) Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game, was published in 2012. Her second novel will be done in 2016. Follow her on Twitter.

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As a husband and father who works far too many hours during the week, I’m a huge fan of making holiday weekends special for the family. These half-dozen or so big holiday weekends should be spent recharging our batteries and reconnecting with those aspects of life that often get lost in our productivity-focused and digitally distracted society. These are the times to let the world be the world so we can focus on the things that are closer to home.

For Labor Day 2016, I’m asking everyone to make an exception.

Yesterday’s big release by the FBI of Hillary Clinton’s email interviews was timed to allow the weight of her deceit and incompetence to fade away with everything else over the long weekend. When the government wants something swept under the rug away from our collective conscience, they do so in a very particular manner. Standard operating procedure is to release it midday on Friday, preferably before a long holiday weekend, so it gets the attention of the press but is pushed aside by a good chunk of the population that has their minds set on hot dogs, family, fireworks, and beer. The story gets coverage when nobody’s looking and then gets tossed in favor of holiday stories. A new week starts on Tuesday when the press has mostly moved on.

Hillary’s email story is one of corruption, lies, and mental breakdowns unbecoming of a President. It must not be swept under the rug. Here are some of the highlights that too few people will see because of the precise timing of the release:

This is all part of a bigger problem in the relationship between mainstream media and the U.S. government, particularly the Democrats. We’ve already seen reporters canned while asking taboo questions about her health. We’ve watched Bill Clinton’s liabilities filtered by mainstream media. We have to dig deep into the realm of obscure conservative media before seeing the reality of Obamacare’s failures.

On this issue of Hillary’s utter failures as a politician and a human being manifested in the way she’s handled and subsequently lied about her emails, we can’t let the media and the government get their wish. As much as it pains me to say so, this weekend is a time to discuss politics even if only in passing. Between the hamburgers and ice cream cones, make sure your cousin knows she lied when she said she set up the server so she could use one device; she had 13 mobile devices attached to her emails. While you’re on your way to see one of the terrible movies Hollywood is offering this weekend, ask your buddies if it’s okay that she wiped her email servers only after the NY Times reported about it. When you get back to work on Tuesday, tell a coworker that you can’t trust someone to be President of the United States if they claim they had no idea how classified intelligence actually worked while Secretary of State.

As some of you know, I’m not a fan of Donald Trump. That fact should compel you to share this story and keep the pressure up on Hillary despite the attempt to turn this scandal into a nothingburger. It’s not just Trump’s biggest fans who are gloating about her failures. Even those of us who aren’t sold on him are utterly aghast at his incompetent competitor.

Jake:Words are what men live by words they say and mean.

The Comancheros 1961

The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which.

George Orwell Animal Farm 1945

This disgusts me:

Russia’s Supreme Court rules that the USSR did not invade Poland in 1939.

This is not only a lie but it’s a brazen lie, told officially for the sake of a fiction.  It’s the worst type of lie now officially endorsed by Russia and it’s courts.  That it invokes the Nuremberg trials in an attempt to cover up a historical crime makes is particularly obscene as its entire purpose is contrary to Nuremberg’s goal, to keep the truth from being written out of history for a political agenda.

Just the thought of it, using the power of the state to punish an individual for speaking the truth aloud.

Well thank goodness you wouldn’t see something like this in the US.  After all if we embrace the culture of the lie we would see people being punished for calling men men and women women, persecuted for giving opinions on issues, pushed out of business or losing their ability to get a job for expressing eternal truths or even banned from public forums for calling out those who would do such things.

And it’s particularly a good thing that we don’t have leaders and potential leaders like that who lie brazenly to and through our authorities and media or deny widely known pubic policies.

I Thank God we’re better than all that, at least while it’s still allowed.