A week doesn’t go by without an article on millennials, i.e., a person born in the 1980s or 1990s. A lot of the articles despair, as Matt Vespa does,

My generation is a disaster, politically.

The PuffHo even tars the whole generation with the same brush, Millennials Now Bringing Their Parents Along On Job Interviews because (emphasis added)

. . . 8 percent of recent college grads brought their parents along to an interview, according to an Adecco survey cited by the Wall Street Journal. What’s more, a full 3 percent actually had their parents sit in on their job tryout.

Heavens to Betsy! You mean, ninety-two percent of millennial interviewees went on their own?

About 13 percent of recent college graduates said they got a job through a parental connection, according to the Adecco survey.

And eighty-seven percent didn’t have parental help getting hired? What are things coming to? People of my generation wrote whole books in praise of nepotism!

Full disclosure: I am the mother of a millennial.  So let me be blunt: If your child cannot go to a job interview without having you in attendance, you have, at least in that aspect, failed as a parent. Yes, the article mentions that

employers are catering to that tendency by hosting “Take Your Parents To Work” days and inviting them to open houses,

but your child will do very well to go out and get interviewed without bringing you to chaperone. Think of it this way: Old enough for a job, old enough to interview by her/himself.

The subject of millennials sells because of many reasons, but it’s starting to wear thin.

As a mother of a millennial, my experience has been that,

a. Millennials enjoy being lumped into that demographic about as much as I do when lumped into the “boomer” category, that is, not at all.

b. They complete college in four years, hold jobs during high school and college, take part in community activities and sports to greater or lesser extent, and don’t go around bragging about it.

c. The millennials I’ve been in close contact are clean, polite, professional, and dedicated to their work. They don’t live in mom’s basement. They pay their bills on time. They eat salad and veggies out of their own volition like the grown-ups they are. They are earning your respect.

d. Many have already started their own families.

e. Not one of them would even think of having mom and dad tag along to interviews.

As for their politics, even Matt Vespa acknowledges that Millennials bolt from socialism once they become employed and start making money. Or, as the saying goes, they get mugged by reality, just like everybody else (except for Bernie Sanders, who, at age 74, is too old to be a millennial, or even a boomer).

So, gentle reader, keep in mind these are young adults you are talking about, not the spoiled brats the media insults for the sake of readership.

Fausta Rodriguez Wertz writes on U.S, and Latin American politics, news, and culture at Fausta’s Blog.

illinois signBy John Ruberry

You can once and for all drop any lingering belief you may possess that Barack Obama is a bi-partisan unifier. A Chicago Democrat in the Illinois House who believed in compromising is now a lame duck because of our leftist president.

Illinois has been locked in a budget battle for nine months. The primary combatants are Republican political newcomer Bruce Rauner, the first Land of Lincoln governor to win a majority of voters since 2002, and House Speaker Michael Madigan, who has led the lower chamber in Springfield for 30 of the last 32 years. He’s also chairman of the Illinois Democratic Party. His daughter, Lisa, has been the state’s attorney general since 2003.

If there is a poster child for the problems of America’s fifth-largest state–a declining population, deficit spending, woefully underfunded public pensions–it’s Michael Madigan, who has been a member of the Illinois House since 1971.

Last month President Barack Obama, whose first public office was as an Illinois state senator, spoke to the General Assembly where he hailed the graces of compromise and working across the aisle with the opposition.

“Where I’ve got an opportunity to find some common ground, that doesn’t make me a sellout to my own party,” Obama said that day, after which Rep. Ken Dunkin (D-Chicago) stood and cheered.

“We’ll talk later, Dunkin,” Obama quickly replied and then continued his speech.

And so Obama talked.

Dunkin is the type of politician Obama who was able to “find some common ground” with Governor Rauner. Madigan’s gerrymandering talents created super-majorities in both chambers of the General Assembly–with not a vote to spare. But Dunkin defied Boss Madigan several times by preventing several overrides of several Rauner vetoes.

Madigan responded predictably by directing funding to the campaign of his primary opponent, Juliana Stratton. She also received Obama’s endorsement and the president–and here’s  the”We’ll talk later” part–appeared in a Stratton radio spot and narrated a TV ad for her.

Shouldn’t Obama be focused on defeating ISIS, tackling the federal deficit, and creating jobs? No, he has better things to do, it seems, such as sticking his nose in a state legislature race that means nothing to a family of four in, let’s say Ohio, that is struggling to get by.

Television advertisements in the expensive Chicago TV market are unheard of in state representative races.

John "Lee" Ruberry
John “Lee” Ruberry

Republican interests contributed heavily to Dunkin’s campaign.

Last Tuesday was primary day in Illinois–and Stratton easily bested Dunkin. The Democratic Machine defeated the compromiser.

Obama is a fraud. He should be ashamed of himself but of course he isn’t.

John Ruberry regularly blogs and Marathon Pundit. He’s a life long resident of ILL-inois.

Seattle keeps getting mugged by reality, first by the results of raising the minimum wage and now this:

According to KING-TV,  a man undressed in a women’s locker room on February 8, citing a new state rule that allows people to choose a bathroom based on gender identity.

Seattle Parks and Recreation says  a man wearing shorts entered the women’s locker room at Evans Pool and took off his shirt. Women alerted staff, who told the man to leave, but he said, “the law has changed and I have a right to be here.”

So of course they let him stay then…

The man later returned a second time while young girls were changing for swim practice. No arrests were made, according to the KING-TV report.

A Seattle Parks spokesman says they’re still working on the issue. 

ARE YOU KIDDING ME?

Now in a sane world the answer to the issue would be grabbing the man by the scruff of the neck and tossing him out on his ass, but in the world of liberalism preventing a man from going into a woman’s locker room while young women are changing is an act of bigotry and you won’t want to be called a bigot would you.

What dopes.

Shut-Upby baldilocks

This is why my novel is self-published and why my next two (three?) books will be self-published as well.

From sci-fi author Nick Cole, via his fellow sci-fi scribe John C. Wright:

Banned by the Publisher

Or, Thank God for Jeff Bezos

I launched a book this week and I went Indie with it. Indie means I released it on Amazon via Kindle Direct Publishing. I had to.

My Publisher, HarperVoyager, refused to publish it because of some of the ideas I wrote about in it.

In other words, they were attempting to effectively ban a book because they felt the ideas and concepts I was writing about were dangerous and more importantly, not in keeping with their philosophical ideals. They felt my ideas weren’t socially acceptable and were “guaranteed to lose fifty percent of my audience” as related back to me by my agent. But more importantly… they were “deeply offended.”

A little backstory. A few years back I wrote a novel called Soda Pop Soldier. It was the last obligated novel under my first contract. The novel was a critical hit (Starred Review in Publisher’s Weekly) and it resonated with my post-apocalyptic readership from my breakout Amazon best seller, The Old Man and the Wasteland, and it picked up a new audience in the cyberpunk and gamer crowd. The novel is about a future dystopia where people play video games for a living. It’s basically Call of Duty meets Ready Player One and a lot of people really enjoyed it. When it came time to write another book for Harper Collins I was encouraged by my editor to dip once more into the Dystopian Gamer milieu and tell another story inside the Soda Pop Soldier universe. We agreed on a prequel that told the story of how that future became the way it is in Soda Pop Soldier.

And that involved talking about Artificial Intelligence because in the dystopian gaming future, the planet had almost been destroyed by a robot revolution sourced by Artificial Intelligence.

And here’s where things went horribly wrong, according to my editor at Harper Collins. While casting about for a “why” for self-aware Thinking Machines to revolt from their human progenitors, I developed a reason for them to do such.

Link added in text. Read on and find out what Harper Collins fears. Hint: intelligence.

Side note: in Tale of the Tigers, my first publisher didn’t like a line of dialogue I put in the mouth of one of my characters, but he had no choice; I was paying to be published. The conversation’s topic? Islam.

I’m hoping that my trip to Kenya lays the foundation for one of my future books, as well. Click to assist.

UPDATE: Larry Correia’s take on the situation is longer and far more entertaining than mine.

Kenya Trip Wishlist at Amazon.

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, tentatively titled, Arlen’s Harem, will be done in 2016. Follow her on Twitter.

Please contribute to Juliette’s Projects JOB: HER TRIP TO KENYA! Her new novel, her blog, her Internet to keep the latter going and COFFEE to keep her going!

Or hit Da Tech Guy’s Tip Jar in the name of Independent Journalism—->>>>

baldilocks

Ever think you had woken up and found you were still asleep and dreaming?

That’s how I felt when I saw this tweet from the Donald Trump camp.

My reaction to this was, wow, just wow, which is a polite way of saying:

ARE YOU KIDDING ME?

In a way it makes sense. The Donald™ has decided (correctly btw) that there is little or no chance of winning over Ted Cruz voters so there is no downside for him here and given the abject hatred of Ted Cruz by the establishment GOP, the media etc etc etc this line of attack is likely to be repeated and popular and hopefully overshadowing the Marco Rubio surge. All part of the overall Trump control of the air campaign plan

Of course it’s also there is always the chance that he’s making this idiocy up as he goes along.

I was thinking it was most self delusional tweet you will see from a presidential campaign, or at least it would be if twenty minutes before I made this Joke concerning Rand Paul & Rick Santorum (both good men btw) leaving the GOP race…

….Jim Gilmore tweeted this.

My reaction of course is ARE YOU KIDDING ME, he really means it!

I’m trying to figure out which tweet is more delusional and just can’t decide so I think it’s time for a poll.

After all the world needs more laughter.

by baldilocksgrillz

A relative of mine—not my parents or siblings—once opined that I had accomplished nothing in my life. When I pointed out that I had learned two foreign languages, retired from the military, and published a novel, he discounted those things!

Once I got over being angry and hurt about that conversation, I realized that my relative’s opinion had one meaning that is two-pronged: that 1) nothing is a real accomplishment unless it has produced vast quantities of material things and/or awards in order to 2) be seen and show-off in front of on-lookers. (My relative didn’t deny it when I, still angry, said that he didn’t think that the things I had done were real accomplishments because none of those  were things that he could brag about; none of his ignorant friends cared about such things.)

Having recently lost almost everything I owned spurred a conversation I’ve been having with God and a continuation of a philosophical “conversation” I’ve being having with myself since that other conversation. What’s the true purpose of using your talents—meant in the biblical sense? Is it so you can buy stuff to enjoy? Or to look good in front of others? Both? I know countless people who push to get their degrees and well-paying jobs for those reasons, especially the latter.

“Floor-showing” was what my great-aunt (RIP) called the fruit of this type of thinking.

It seems to me that floor-showing as an ultimate life goal is the full-flowering of ingratitude and entitlement. It is also a sign of a deep-seated inferiority complex.

And that’s what this whole thing with Jada Pinkett-Smith is about. It isn’t enough that her husband, Will Smith, is an accomplished actor and that the two have raised their children in great opulence. They must have validation! And not validation from the lowly consumer, but from the Big Guys! And, through that kind of validation he can say “I’m an Academy Award winner! Look at me!” And she can say, “I’m married to an Academy Award winning actor! Look at me!” The alleged scorning of black actors by the Academy is a mere vehicle to get others on their side.  Will Smith’s former Fresh Prince of Bel-Air co-star Janet Hubert sees right through this tactic.

Outcome-based education and employment–otherwise known as Affirmative Action–are two sophisticated types of floor-showing; they are the reasons that hard work has almost become irrelevant. Only the title accrued means anything, no matter how dumb-down the curricula or qualifications are made. This mindset has become so pervasive that even material gains and box office receipts are no longer good enough for people like the Smiths. They have to be crowned by the establishment they serve and, if not, they will take their ball and go home. And, in the name of tribal solidarity, they want other black actors to do the same, regardless of whether the latter have mortgages to pay or not, as Ms. Hubert mentioned. I’m guessing that the Smiths will not be putting up any boycotting actors in one of their mansions.

That said, what should any final life goal truly be? To give glory to God, which I think, is why He gives us personal talents/gifts in the first place. Achieving milestones in order to “be seen of men” seems to lead to chronic hunger. And anger. And unhappiness.

Investing our individual talents is what we are asked of God to do. And when we do it, we receive manifold interest: happiness, peace, and, maybe, vast material possessions; at the very least, enough to sustain us. But those first two are priceless and, as I recently discovered, hard to dislodge.

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, tentatively titled, Arlen’s Harem, will be done in 2016. Follow her on Twitter.

Please contribute to Juliette’s Projects JOB: HER TRIP TO KENYA! Her new novel, her blog, her Internet to keep the latter going and COFFEE to keep her going!

Or hit Da Tech Guy’s Tip Jar in the name of Independent Journalism—->>>>baldilocks

dunce-capby baldilocks

When the time comes for choosing—and the time will come—most of the leftist, pseudo-conservative, and even some real conservative media will convert to Islam. And they will do it for this reason: ignorant pride, along with cowardice. How do I know this? Well, heck I’m just guessing, but I think that ignorance about the spiritual foundation of one’s own culture makes a person prone to accepting those of other cultures–especially when the option of continuing to breathe is on the line.

“What make you say that the leftist and pseudo-conservative media are ignorant about Judeo-Christianity,” I hear you ask.

There have been plenty of unironic examples of this type of ignorance on public display since Christmas. Mostly of it is the result of relying on one’s memory for the important, but not essential details surrounding the birth of Christ.

This doozy from Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Kathleen Parker—noted by Mollie Hemingway–is, however, not the misunderstanding of a minor detail.

One observation. I don’t know… this seems to have slipped through the cracks a little bit but Ted Cruz said something that I found rather astonishing. He said, you know, “It’s time for the body of Christ to rise up and support me.” I don’t know anyone who takes their religion seriously who would think that Jesus should rise from the grave and resurrect himself to serve Ted Cruz. I know so many people who were offended by that comment. And you know if you want to talk about grandiosity and messianic self-imagery I think he makes Ted Cruz makes Donald Trump look rather sort of like a gentle little lamb.

Parker thinks Jesus is dead and has no clue what the term ‘body of Christ’ means.

Ponder that for a bit.

I may be wrong, but I think that Parker is emblematic of those who the mainstream media entities employ and reward. And I think all her offended friends are emblematic of the rest of Organized Left. Conversion by the sword to Islam will not matter to those who don’t really know anything about the terms of their alleged salvation in the first place.

With their necks on the line, they’ll deny Christ and will not understanding the significance of that act of volition. After all, what’s the big deal about denying a dead guy?

I contend that there will be a lot of people in Hell who are too stupid to figure out how they ended up there.

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, tentatively titled, Arlen’s Harem, will be done in 2016. Follow her on Twitter.

Please contribute to Juliette’s Projects JOB: HER TRIP TO KENYA! Her new novel, her blog, her Internet to keep the latter going and COFFEE to keep her going!

Or hit Da Tech Guy’s Tip Jar in the name of Independent Journalism—->>>>baldilocks

I spent most of this week in bed exhausted with a miserable cold, alternating fitful sleep with blowing my nose, so I wasn’t keeping track of most news. One of the times I turned on the TV I found Obama shedding tears while calling for what he calls “common-sense gun reform”. Apparently he was at it last night, too, on a CNN town hall forum, where, as one has learned to expect by now,

Obama lectures. He hectors. He condescends. He misleads. He tells whoppers. He gives us the old-time BS. He wags his finger. He disparages his opponents. He personalizes the issues. He pulls the tools out of his community organizer toolbox and adds his own monumental self-regard to the production. This act has gotten very, very old.

The President under which a federal operation allowed weapons from the U.S. to pass into the hands of drug cartels is calling for “common sense” on weapons.

Bad as Fast and Furious is, the Obama administration has outdone itself in a further display of incompetence: the United States government shipped a Hellfire missile via commercial carrier, and the missile ended up in Cuba, maybe, because they’re not sure of exactly where it is now.

To summarize,

  • a Hellfire missile
  • shipped via commercial carrier to Europe
  • in early 2014
  • goes missing
  • and months later, in June, “Lockheed Martin officials realized the missile was missing”
  • but is likely in Cuba
  • while the Obama administration was finalizing its easement of relations with the Communist dictatorship
  • and the White House carried on with the negotiations.

I’ll leave it to the military analysts to clarify the importance and magnitude of such security breach, but, hey! the Wall Street Journal assures us the missile is “inert,” since “This particular missile didn’t contain explosives.” Just like a firearm with no bullets in it, only with a heck of a lot more military security codes, programming and national defense information.

Capitol Hill Cubans asks,

If the U.S. knew about Castro having the missing Hellfire missile since June 2014 — why didn’t it make its return a condition for the normalization of relations, which it announced in December 2014?

Moreover, if Castro won’t return this missile, the Obama Administration didn’t know how it got to Cuba and U.S. intelligence agencies are concerned that the technology is being shared with other rogue actors — why did it proceed to remove Cuba from state-sponsors of terrorism list in May 2015?

It’s beyond negligence. It’s policy malpractice.

So any time I hear the White House ask for “common sense” anything, excuse me if I turn a deaf ear.

Argument2by baldilocks

A lot of my friends on Facebook say that they are going to “stop talking about politics,” meaning they are going to stop talking about who to vote for and about what our betters have in store for us. Too much nastiness; too many hurt feelings, they say.

I must be getting old in the world of online opining—I’ve been blogging since 2003. Since that time, I’ve been called all manner of nasty things related to my race, religion, heritage, politics and whatnot. I’ve been called a whore for the white man and an African snob by black people. I’ve been called a Low Information Voter, an apologist for Islam(!) and a probable welfare queen by white people—the presumption was that I voted for the present POTUS. In 2008, I was even called “delusional” by an alleged conservative. My crime? Asserting that Barack Obama is a Marxist/socialist/progressive/communist. (Who’s the LIV now?)

As a result, insults pretty much roll off my back. In addition, I rather enjoy answering back like a civilized human while, sometimes slipping the verbal shiv in without the insulter knowing it…until they see their blood on the floor.

My point is that my skin may be thicker than that of some you who only recently began offering your opinions to the public and that, if you change your mind about discussing politics, you skin will grow thicker also.

My other point is that politics is life and vice versa. Here in America, politics deals with those to whom we give permission to run our lives—at least for now it does.

Now, you can abdicate talking about politics, but it will still be present, still there in the midst of what you call your personal life.

Don’t think so? I can cite many examples which affirm my assertion, but let’s go with the latest one: the 2016 Omnibus Bill. Look at the shizam that this thing funds.

  • Syrian Refugee Insertion
  • Klanned Planned Parenthood
  • Expansion of the H-2 Visa Program
  • Sanctuary Cities
  • Illegal Alien Resettlement

This is by no means a complete list. All of these issues affect the personal lives of American citizens and at least one is a moral issue. This bill is a legislated means of putting the government’s hands in the pockets of American citizens and taking away the few pennies left therein in order to screw over these same Americans. To refuse to engage on these topics is to agree to your own legal plundering…by Republicans, I might add.

Yes, when you argue about this stuff—politics—you will get push-back, often from those who have not thought scenarios through to their logical end points and/or who are fact-deficient. Or, perhaps, it’s you who has not thought scenarios through or are fact-deficient. This is what arguing does: exposes flaws in thinking and refines it, or at least it is supposed to do that. (That other thing which we called argument—composed primarily of insult—is, in fact, not argument. It’s poo-flinging. Modern terminology: trolling.)

I urge those interested in true argument to stay with the public discussion of ,politics–of life–in spite of the poo-flingers. I would even say that the abdication of reasonable men and women in political discussions is what has caused poo-flingers to flourish. Nature abhors a vacuum.

Keep talking as if your life depends on it, because, in fact it does. And don’t worry. At some point the time for talk will be over.

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, tentatively titled, Arlen’s Harem, will be done in 2016. Follow her on Twitter.baldilocks

Please contribute to Juliette’s Projects JOB: HER TRIP TO KENYA! Her new novel, her blog, her Internet to keep the latter going and COFFEE to keep her going!

Or hit Da Tech Guy’s Tip Jar in the name of Independent Journalism—->>>>

Back in the late 1920s, René Magritte painted a smoking pipe, and under it, in neat calligraphy, wrote, “Ceci n’est pas une pipe.”, French for “This is not a pipe.”

He titled the painting La trahison des images (The Treachery of Images), meaning that it is a painting of a pipe, not an actual pipe you can smoke from.

Well enough.

From the curator’s note at the LACMA (emphasis added),

Magritte’s word-image paintings are treatises on the impossibility of reconciling words, images, and objects. La Trahison des images challenges the linguistic convention of identifying an image of something as the thing itself. At first, Magritte’s point appears simplistic, almost to the point of provocation: A painting of a pipe is not the pipe itself. In fact, this work is highly paradoxical. Its realistic style and caption format recall advertising, a field in which Magritte had worked. Advertisements, however, elicit recognition without hesitation or equivocation; this painting causes the viewer to ponder its conflicting messages.

I emphasize “this painting causes the viewer to ponder its conflicting messages,” because now, in our politically correct times, we are challenged to do exactly the opposite: To ignore conflicting messages, ponder nothing, and instead to blindly accept pernicious behavior for the sake of diversity.

One instance I came across recently is the middle-aged guy, father of seven children, from Toronto who does not “want to be an adult right now”, living instead as a six-year old girl.

For the multi-culti enlightened Liberal, any of us who are appalled/revulsed/disgusted at the spectacle, are bigoted, anti-LGBT homophobes. As such, we are to be censored, derided, shunned, muted. Our rights to freedom of thought and expression do not exist.

A few months ago, Stuart Schniederman, of the perfectly-named Had Enough Therapy? blog, stated,

To believe that Caitlyn Jenner is all-woman is to take leave of one’s rational faculties and dispense with all concern with fact… and with freedom.

As a free woman, I will stand out and exercise my right to free expression, and not only will I say that there’s a lot very wrong with the Toronto guy and his enablers, I, like Magritte, will go on pondering the conflicting messages bombarding us.

I invite you to do the same.

(Please also read my prior post on culture this week, The dark Satanic Mills)

Fausta Rodriguez Wertz writes on U.S. and Latin American politics, news and culture at Fausta’s Blog.