Veterans plan social media protest against NFL

Veterans are planning to stage a protest on social media against the NFL the weekend of Nov. 11.  That is what Paul Tardif told me on the Brad & Dan radio show this morning.  Tardif heads the local Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association, which holds benefits and bike rides to help charitable causes, including many for Veterans.

Tardif said on the program that most Veterans are upset with NFL players taking a knee, during the National Anthem and they intend to make their feelings known in an organized effort the weekend of Nov. 11.

Veterans Day falls on a Saturday this year.

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Donut shop takes a stand

Maple Donuts

A donut shop in York, PA is taking a stand.  Maple Donuts is stepping into the NFL’s National Anthem controversy with a billboard ad that reads: “MAPLE DONUTS TAKES A STAND NOT A KNEE.”

This is not the first time the donut shop has taken a stand on issues.  Jim Nelson, a manager at Maple Donuts told Fox 43, “We’re patriotic around here.”


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The National Football League’s national anthem protests are continuing and so is the controversy.  Some stadiums were half empty at kick-off of Sunday’s games and others were still half empty by halftime.  And now, the new owner of the Miami Marlins, Derek Jeter, has weighed in on the controversy.  While refusing to say what he would do, because he is no longer a player, Jeter added the following:

“The thing that I think is frustrating, this whole rhetoric that is going back and forth. People lose sight of the fact of why someone was kneeling,” said Jeter. “They’re focused so much on the fact that they are kneeling as opposed to what they’re kneeling for. Peaceful protests are fine. You have your right to voice your opinion. As long as it’s a peaceful protest, everyone should be fine with that.”

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Anybody who thinks that Hartford filing for bankruptcy is the only way out of the city’s financial abyss, might want to think again.  The Saturday story in the Hartford Courant demonstrates that Chapter 9 is anything but a trip around the block.

Public employee unions have already sought counsel to protect pensions that have been negotiated.  That means one thing; a prolonged court battle.  So buckle up.  It’s going to be a long ride.

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We’re not taking vacations


We’re not taking vacations, at least according to a study by Project.  The Associated Press reports that over the last 15 years Americans are taking less and less vacation time.  More than half of Americans are leaving vacation time on the table.   The story offers tips on why you should take a vacation.

According to the report, 658 million vacation days went unused by Americans last year alone.  More than a third of those days cannot be “rolled over” into another year.  The survey notes many employees don’t want to go on vacation because they fear a high work load, when they return.  Others feel no one else can do their job.

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Time for U.S. Representative Esty to take the next step


It is time for U.S. Representative Elizabeth Esty to take the next step.  First of all, kudos to Connecticut’s fifth district Democrat for recognizing the need to fill manufacturing jobs.  One year ago, she put together a board to produce ways to engage students in STEM fields.  On Wednesday, the board met at Kaynor Technical High School in Waterbury.  Made up of scientists, manufacturers and educators, the board discussed a survey it had compiled.  The result? Connecticut education comes up woefully short when it comes to matching students with the thousands of job vacancies, particularly in the manufacturing sector.

One comment particularly struck a chord with me.  Talking about the ever-growing medical industry, Rachel Felberbaum, senior director of business development at Protein Sciences Corp., said students ought to be taught how medicines, such as flu vaccines, are made.  “I really didn’t learn about the industry until after college,” she is quoted as saying in the Republican American newspaper.

How often do we hear, “I wasn’t taught that in high school?”

On my business radio program recently, I interviewed two students from the Hartford Job Corps Academy.  The academy, an example that not all Great Society programs introduced by President Lyndon B. Johnson failed, takes at-risk young adults and prepares them for productive careers, especially in the medical and manufacturing fields.  The program is rigorous and disciplined.  In plain English, there is no screwing around.  The two students I interviewed have turned their lives around, and are about to embark on careers in the medical and manufacturing fields.

The question becomes, why does it take a job corps academy?  Why isn’t this taught in high schools?

A common complaint heard from employers is that high school graduates can’t read or do math and that is why many of them are not hired.  That and the survey done by Rep. Esty’s informal board should ring a bell.  It’s time to hit the reset button.  Sadly, that will be easier said than done.

The education bureaucracy is firmly entrenched, with many of their campaign dollars going to underwrite the party to which Rep. Esty belongs.  Preparing the next generation for the new economy requires a dramatic change in the education curriculum, including the elimination of course requirements that no longer captivate the imagination of bored students, many of whom choose to drop out of high school.

Going to school should be exciting and challenging, with a conducive learning environment.   Because there are only so many tax dollars to go around, it may mean making choices, including the elimination of some subjects that most students find boring but are placed in the curriculum to satisfy certain core constituencies, many of which donate big campaign bucks.

Rep. Esty’s challenge and others truly concerned about our future, is to shake up the status quo.   That means utilizing the “Edustations” invented by STEMPilot owner Jay LeBoff (another guest on my program) ,and incorporating a curriculum that meets today’s job requirements.  It also means instituting these programs at the expense of other course mandates.

If Rep. Esty is truly serious about preparing qualified students for the 21st Century workforce, she will take the next step.  That means shaking up the education establishment.

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U.N. panel wants to tax meat out of existence

meat case

A U.N. panel wants to tax meat out of existence.  No, I am not making this up.  It may have passed below the radar screen, because the International Resource Panel reached its decision in May, and the mainstream media reported on the story during the 4th of July weekend, but this is not some contrived story.  And by the piece in the Washington Post, it reads like they hate meat too.  What a surprise?

The Post’s Wonkblog is headlined “Meat is horrible.”  In the story, Rachael Premack, the Post’s business writer, blames meat for just about every problem in the world, including pollution.

The leader of a fight to ban meat is Maarten Hajer, who is a member of the U.N. panel.  “I think it is extremely urgent,” Hajer said on taxing meat out of existence. He says taxes are necessary on meat, because of its harmful effects on health and the environment.  He wants meat taxed at the wholesale level to drive up the cost so much consumers will stop buying it.  In fact, if he had his way, meat would be taxed at every step of the way.  You get the idea he wants consumers taxed, even if they inhale the aroma of meat, while entering a supermarket.

Hajer, a professor at the Netherlands’s Utrecht University, is part of the panel comprised of 34 scientists and 30 governments.

I doubt this issue will be part of the current presidential campaign, but maybe the candidates ought to be asked.  As long as the media keeps serving up “red meat,” they might want to try the real thing with their questions.   Meanwhile, pass the hot dogs.  And hamburgers too.


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Most media ignore deadliest July in 10 years

Photo credit: You Tube

It was the deadliest July in ten years, but unless it has to do with the Chicago Cubs, don’t expect most of the mainstream media to report about Chicago. It doesn’t fit their template.  It reflects badly on the President of the United States, whose adopted hometown is Chicago.  It reflects badly on the mayor of Chicago, who once served as the president’s chief of staff.   And it certainly doesn’t reflect well on the status quo, which the media has a stake in.  It is why they chose to write negative stories daily, about Donald Trump.  To be sure, the Republican Party presidential nominee doesn’t help his own cause by verbally shooting himself in the foot, but that does not absolve the media for failing to report on this story, instead choosing to play up Trump on a daily basis.

So, in case you missed it.  As the calendar flipped from July to August, Chicago just experienced its deadliest July in 10 years.  Sixty-five homicides were recorded in Chicago in July, the latest victim, a woman leaving choir practice, who was fatally shot by her estranged husband.  In all, there have been nearly 400 homicides this year in the Windy City, 90 shy of last year’s 2015 total.  And there is still five months to go.

The July numbers elicited no comment from the President of the United States, as he continues to campaign for a third term through his surrogate, Hillary Clinton.  Outside of the Chicago media and the Wall St. Journal, not much mention in the mainstream media.  To report the story would reflect negatively on the current regime.  The media’s target is Trump, all Trump all the time.  Negative stories that cast the current regime in a bad light must be ignored.

These days in Chicago, other than a Cubs victory, the only thing that passes for good news is how the police superintendent framed the July homicide numbers.  Eddie Johnson noted the 65 homicides were lower than the 72 committed in June.

We mourn for Newtown.  We mourn for Orlando.  We mourn for Dallas.  As well we should.   We should also mourn for Chicago. Sadly, the media has chosen to pick and choose its tragedies to fit a template rather than report the news.

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Americans feel more alienated than ever from political class


As the presidential campaign swings into high gear – some might argue it has been in high gear for more than a year – Americans feel more alienated than ever from the USA’s political class, according to a new Harris Poll.  Harris has conducted a survey of this kind since 1966.  A combination of factors leads to an index score in the poll.  The index is listed at 70, tying the all-time high for that alienated feeling.

Among the key findings in the survey:

  • 82% believe that the people running the country don’t really care what happens to you
  • 78% of all adults believe the rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer
  • 70% believe that most people in power try to take advantage of people like them

The poll was conducted between May 31 and June 2, but was not released until July 28.

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70 die in line of duty, 33 by gunfire so far this year

Law Enforcement

ThrouLaw Enforcementgh the first seven months of 2016, seventy police officers have died in the line of duty.  Thirty-three officers have been fatally shot, the latest coming on July 28 in San Diego.  Police officer Jonathan M. DeGuzman was shot, after he and his partner – who was wounded – conducted a traffic stop at an intersection.  Both officers were shot in the upper body.   The suspect, also suffered a gunshot wound, but he will survive.

Officer DeGuzman worked 16 years for the San Diego police department.  He is survived by his wife and two children.  DeGuzman was 43 years of age.

You won’t read or hear much about this in the mainstream media.  The initial story goes away after a few days, as the mainstream media has other templates to push.   There is, after all,  a presidential election to worry about, particularly when it comes to a certain candidate they do not want to win.

So as the mainstream media continues to cover all the news that fits their agenda, remember those who have committed their lives to law enforcement.  They go to work everyday, not knowing if they will return home to their families, all the while doing their part to protect the lives of all, including those who have that agenda to fulfill.

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