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The Summer of Trump

  • Posted on August 27, 2015 at 4:50 pm

This summer has been an interesting one for politics.  I have always had an interest in politics and I love watching what Senator Bernie Sanders has been doing.  However, according to the media treatment and attention, it is the summer of “Trump”.  I don’t know if Donald Trump will sustain his lead but he has managed to keep his name in the news on a daily basis.  None of the Republican candidates seem to have any conceivable idea of how to take him on, so he wins!

I listen to Trump and the things he says flabbergast me.  He has no filter and that seems to be what the people following him like about him.  He appears openly racist towards Mexican people by referring to the children born here of undocumented Mexicans as “anchor babies”.  He wants to change the 14th Amendment so that birthright doesn’t necessarily happen.  He also seems to have issues with women and a variety of other people that try to call him out on his behavior.  Whatever he says and does seems make him stronger; no matter how ridiculous he sounds to me or anyone else that finds his behavior disturbing.

With all of this, I wanted to share what has been on my mind and it is somewhat funny.  I see Donald Trump as being a lot like Vladimir Putin.  They are both powerful men that are full of themselves.  As a woman living in a patriarchal society, to me, they come from the same cloth.  This past year our country has been perturbed with Vladimir Putin for all of his antics.  Many times the media tries to make fun of him.  It might be his antics of running around shirtless or some other form that they show to convince us he is horrible.  I don’t personally know what either of these men is truly like.  I just know how they both come across through the mass media and that is what I will share with you.

When I see Trump looking smug, I also see Putinvp courtesey vanity fair looking like this.

THE CELEBRITY APPRENTICE -- Episode 912 -- Pictured: Donald Trump -- Photo by: Ali Goldstein/NBC

THE CELEBRITY APPRENTICE — Episode 912 — Pictured: Donald Trump — Photo by: Ali Goldstein/NBC

Trump with an eagle, Putin with a leopard.putin with animal

martin schoeller courtesy of time mag

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trump’s view of women, Putin’s view of women.

darren decker, miss universe organization120+putin+approve+femen+at+hannover+my+gawd+dat+putin_f89cf3_4528458

 

Okay, not Trump but his kids swimming with dolphins. Putin swimming with dolphins.trumps kids swimming with dolphins

courtesy of buzzfeed
Trump on Time, Putin on Time.donald-trump-01-435

courtesy time

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trump at the Central Park Horse Show, Putin on a horse.trump at the central Park horse show

vladimir-horse

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trump with puppy, Putin with Puppy.donald-trump-435

VLADIMIR-PUTIN-WITH-DOG

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trump with gun, Putin with gun.

Trump-gun

Picture taken on September 14, 2009 shows Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin examining a rifle during a visit to a weapons manufacturing facility in Tula. Putin made a routine working visit to the town and surrounding region.                     AFP PHOTO / RIA NOVOSTI / POOL / ALEXEY DRUZHININ (Photo credit should read ALEXEY DRUZHININ/AFP/Getty Images)

Picture taken on September 14, 2009 shows Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin examining a rifle during a visit to a weapons manufacturing facility in Tula. Putin made a routine working visit to the town and surrounding region. AFP PHOTO / RIA NOVOSTI / POOL / ALEXEY DRUZHININ (Photo credit should read ALEXEY DRUZHININ/AFP/Getty Images)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trump shirtless (Sorry, this one is photoshopped.), Putin shirtless (Not photoshopped).donalld-trump-shirless (1)

epa01091304 Russian President Vladimir Putin enjoys fishing on the Khemchik River in Republic of Tuva 15 August 2007.  EPA/DMITRY ASTAKHOV RIA NOVOSTI/KREMLIN POOL

epa01091304 Russian President Vladimir Putin enjoys fishing on the Khemchik River in Republic of Tuva 15 August 2007. EPA/DMITRY ASTAKHOV RIA NOVOSTI/KREMLIN POOL

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trump with Bush #1, Putin with Bush #2!from getty image

chinadaily.com.cn

 

 

 

 

 

Trump with Hillary, Putin with Hillary.
trump_clintonfrom mir-politika.ru

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trump on Mexicans.

Putin on Gays.

ABC Latest News | Latest News Videos

Maybe with these images and videos you can now understand why Trump merely reminds me of Putin!

I posted this here just for a laugh, although the election is really, in my mind, no laughing matter.  However, in the mood of what this post is about, here are two final images brought to you from the minds of photoshoppers online that show you just how silly Trump and Putin can be made to look.

Trump on a lion (photoshopped), Putin on a bear (photoshopped or not?).trump on lion

putin on bear

Workplace Deaths

  • Posted on July 13, 2015 at 5:17 pm

This past year I have noticed several incidents of work place deaths around the country and especially right here in Michigan.  I always notice these ever since my nephew had his hand cut off while working a summer job after he graduated from high school.  I am acutely aware of issues related to safety in the work place because of my own nephew’s loss.  However, I believe most people are unaware of safety issues even in their own work places.  Most of us assume that we are not at risk of injury or death when we go to work and we believe that our employer is looking out for our best interests at work.  In most circumstances, this may be true, but sadly, it is not true for all circumstances.  I am writing this today just to make even one person more aware of the safety issues that may come up while they are at work.

Here is an astounding statistic that I took word for word form Mibiz online.

“Every person who leaves for work in the morning in good health should expect to return home at night in good health. That did not happen for over 117,000 Michiganders in 2013.” – See more at: http://mibiz.com/item/22206-10-essential-elements-of-a-safe-workplace#sthash.HhdkxKCE.dpuf

Two recent cases brought all of this up for me once again.  In Ionia, Michigan, Wanda Holbrook recently died when she was caught in some kind of robotic machinery at Ventra Ionia Main, a company that makes auto bumpers, trailer hitches, and some kind of plastic parts.  She was a maintenance worker.  The case is being investigated by MIOSHA, so I don’t know what if any violations were made at this time.  In Germany, a man was also killed by robotic equipment at a VW plant.  It grabbed him and crushed his chest against machinery.  These two cases stood out for me as they both involved some kind of robotic machinery.  After reading about these two cases, I decided to look at some other cases involving worker deaths.

This poor kid, Jeremy Mc Spadden, Jr., probably never thought his life would end playing a zombie at a corn maze, but it did.  Workers were paid $50 a night to dress up like zombies and run through the corn while paid customers rode a bus loaded up with paintball guns and shot at them.  What could possibly go wrong?  The company was fined because of the risk they put the workers at with the uneven terrain and the lack of instruction on what to do if their goggles obstructed their vision.  The kid ended up being run over by the bus!

A worker out in California at Bumble Bee Foods was performing maintenance on a 35-foot oven when another worker filled the pressure cooker with tuna and turned it on.  Here is a good video with an interview with his daughter.  I am sure his death would have been prevented, if some good safety procedures had been in place.

I came across a document from the National Council for Safety and Health that is very interesting and actually a quick study.  It highlights seven preventable deaths.  Each person deserved better and died a preventable death.  At their website, you can find out just what your rights as a worker are as most people just don’t think about these things.  I suggest that you give all of this some thought and think about your own job and whether it seems safe or has potential safety issues that should be addressed.  http://www.coshnetwork.org/

Andrew Beckman

In some cases as work is moved out to other countries and factories are closed completely or streamlined with fewer employees, people become more desperate about their jobs.  Sometimes they will work in situations that they may even know are not safe because they need to take care of their families and are holding on to their version of the American dream.  A Michigan steel worker was killed on the job back in 2014.  He was loading steel rods onto a flatbed by himself when they shifted and landed on him.  A full five minutes went by before anyone found him.  I am sure this man would have been better served working with another person.  So, what do you think was the price of Andrew’s life?  The company was cited by MIOSHA for $4900 for basically improperly training him with using a special sling to lift the 3000 pound load.

Another man in Michigan died just this month when he fell at a Walker packaging company.  His death is being investigated.

Many people probably still remember the worker who was crushed last year working at Grand Rapids Plastic, Inc.  Recently, they received a hefty fine for many safety violations.  I remember reading about the case last year.  Many of the people comented in the online article on the unsafe work environment at the plant, many were people currently working there.  People will take many jobs to take care of their families and sometimes they are unsafe.  His wife has retained Geoffrey Fieger as her lawyer.  This is probably a good move on her part but it certainly won’t bring him back.  I heard her on the news and I do know that she wants justice for her husband.

These accidents are happening all over our country and of course, around the world.  The big question is which of these are truly accidents and which are preventible?  One of the things that I came across about MIOSHA and the fines was that they usually negoitiate with the companies and the fines end up being half of the original cost.  Supposedly, the company is expected to take the balance of the money and put it towards better safety protocol.  I am sure some use it wisely and other companies seem to turn up with more violations year after year.

This was not a happy post.   I wasn’t trying to make anyone happy even though I am a very optimistic person.  I am merely trying to get people to become more aware of their own workplace environment and that of their children.  Over the years, I remember talking to students that were repeatedly burned by grease at fast food restaurants.  I am thinking maybe they could wear special gloves or there must be some way to shield them from exposure to the grease but it is time people started letting their inner voice question some of the things they are asked to do at work.  Are you slicing or grinding up meat?  Has anyone really taught you the safe way to do that?  Speak up if you think you know a safer, better way to do something.  Talk to other people on the job.  Just how did that guy lose his finger?  Was it really his fault or was something malfunctioning on the machine he was working on?  Sometimes, people are asked to multi-task, not the safest thing to do if you are cutting something.  When I am at school using my paper cutter, I am very aware of how easily I could lose a bit of my fingers.  Students are always talking and asking questions.  Sometimes, I just stop them and tell them I have to focus on cutting paper because I don’t want to be cut.  Many have asked me if I have ever cut myself.  Thankfully, I haven’t but I am keenly aware of others that have had that misfortune.  Please take your safety at work seriously.  When you get in your car, you buckle up.  When you go to work, make sure you are rested and aware of your surroundings, and up on any safety protocol!

That Flag?

  • Posted on June 25, 2015 at 8:22 pm

A couple years ago, I had some students that wanted to depict the Confederate flag on their scratch art projects.  I told them I would not allow it because it is a racist symbol.  They argued with me about that issue and did not believe me.  I said, “Let me see, how about I put racist symbols on Google images and see what happens?”   I did that and of course many images came up but the Confederate flag was smack dab in the middle of all that hate.  My students told me that just because it is on the Internet doesn’t make it true.  These are middle school boys growing up in southern Michigan with the mentality that there is nothing wrong with that flag.  I periodically have students that have challenged me on this issue, swastikas, and the KKK.  Sometimes they are testing me to see what I will accept and sometimes they are just so used to being around these symbols and seeing them that they just don’t know any better.

I know there has been more of this these past few years and it is related to the Tea Party movement and, of course, to the fact that we now have a black president.  Over the years, the more that I see of President Obama, the more I realize how much hatred there is in our country.  This is more than a Republican or Democratic issue.  Those Republicans that refuse to work with President Obama have refused from day one.  They don’t hate him because he is a Democrat; they hate him because he is a black Democrat.  I have always found President Obama to be a tad more Republican in his stances than that of a progressive Democrat.  I could not understand why the right could be so down on him.  He has done so much that they should be happy about.  Getting up the “courage” to take down this racist symbol is in my mind, is a joke.  As an educator, I know it is racist and so do all these powerful people.  I am no more educated than most of them, but so many of them, like these young boys, do not want to face the truth.

John Oliver said it right when he talked about the Confederate flag, “The Confederate flag is one of those things that should only be seen on t-shirts, belt buckles and bumper stickers to help the rest of us identify the worst people in the world.”   I laughed when I watched his piece on this because that is exactly how I see it.  Whenever I see someone with that flag, I think I know what they are about and I choose to avoid them.  It does however; make it easier for them to find each other in a crowd, if they are looking for like-minded people.  Now that it is out in the open and everyone knows it is a racist symbol, one would think that people would want to get on with the healing and remove it from any part of their lives.  If I were wearing something that I discovered was racist, rest assured, I wouldn’t want to wear that thing again.  For me, the Civil War was a part of history and should be treated as such.

What does our country stand for?  We go into other countries trying to democratize them.  We say we stand for all that is good and right in the world and for freedom of speech.  At home, we have allowed hate groups to spread their hate.  Whether it is the KKK, Neo-Nazi groups, or the American Family Association, hate groups teach hate.  They start when people are very young children to indoctrinate them with their personal form of hate.  These peoples’ rights are protected and often by groups like the ACLU.  I don’t know what we can do to stop all of this hate, but I do know that children are not born hating anyone.  Hatred is a learned behavior.  We believe in free speech so these people are still going to be allowed to spread their own form of hatred but it should be clear that anything that breeds that hatred should not be accepted on government property, whether it be federal lands or state owned, or allowed within government programs.  We, as a country, must be leaders on this issue.  It is clear to me that these flags and monuments to a time when we were a country with a master and slave population, need to be put in a museum.  It is time that we healed as a nation and worked to support each other.  Race should not be what defines us as a people.  Our spirit, integrity, and character should.

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