Remembering 9/11 From Someone Who Was There

Originally posted on Andrew S. Ginsburg:

There are so many memories of 9/11 I dont even know where to start, not even sure if I want to start. Before 9/11 terrorism was something that happened somewhere else, not in the US and certainly not in Manhattan. Terrorism happened in far away places and was never covered much here on the news, because after all how could it happen here? The 1993 truck bomb failure proved the point in my head. They couldnt do anything here, no way! So the morning of 9/11 I remember as being perfect, the perfect temp, humidity, the kind of weather you wished you had every day; clear blue skies everything perfect. At that time I was working at Dow Jones & Co. and got to work probably around 7 or 7:30 like any other day. I remember someone I worked with said a plane had hit one of the towers. I…

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POLITICS: Can You Handle Hearing The Truth Digesting and Learning From It?

IMG_2183This is a question I ask myself of most people. Can you take in the facts and learn from them? Not dispute or argue with them, but actually have an open mind and see the world in a different light and be able to say “Yeah I was wrong?”

I think so few people can do that that it’s very unfortunate. I try to surround myself with people who are like that. We are all here to learn and none of us is always right. I am the first to admit if I am wrong, or didn’t look at an issue from enough sides. I wish others were too.

Today’s politics is a sickening example of how 99% of the people are unable to do this. To open your mind and see everything from all angles and hopefully learn from it. The zealots on the right demonize and obstruct everything president Obama tries to do. Their goal? Make his presidency a failure. As I have said in the past many many times, this kind of behavior, acting against the good of the American people, should be treated as treason. But, what it is is a close-minded political point of view that doesn’t allow for new ideas or the good of the Country.

You think it’s just the right? It’s not. The left is just as bad. Currently president Obama is floundering with his worst poll ratings since he took office. What does the left say about this? “Oh, the polls are wrong,” “the poll was biased,” “the questions asked in the poll were misleading.” This is pure bullshit. The latest ABC News – Washington Post poll found 52% of Americans feel the Obama presidency has been a failure. This, coming from one of the most respected polls in America is how people feel. Trying to dispute/discredit it shows people who don’t understand the broader world. 

It’s the close mindedness of the left and right that really piss me off. Can the right understand that their behavior is not helping the United States? Can the left understand that Mr. Obama is not seen favorably? Unfortunately the answers to these questions seems to be a resounding NO. This is tragic for the future of our Country. People so close-minded that they can’t see facts in front of them and learn from them. Grow from them. Alter policy from them. It’s a tragedy.

Whereas most people will tell you what you want to hear, I will tell you what you need to know. I am not speaking to gain followers and have no fear of losing any. I am here to point out what should be the obvious, to look at our longterm future and find suggestions to make it better for all of us. 

Now is a rare time in the world when there is so much chaos, war and economic anxiety. I believe the president’s poll ratings are so low because people don’t think he has a grasp on the domestic and global issues. Now, a poll is a moment in time. Rather than trying to say the poll is wrong a wiser course of action would be to say polls change. Open mind v closed mind. 

With all of the turmoil in the world the American economy is still the number one issue on Americans minds. Why? Economic insecurity. The official unemployment rate leaves out about 30-40 million people who aren’t counted because they aren’t ‘looking for a job.’ If you calculate this number with the official number the unemployment rate is more like 29%. Even worse, the people who have to work part time and the lack of wage growth over the last 40 years. 

Like it or not the president gets blamed or praised for the state of the economy. People blame president Obama for the economy. They don’t really understand that the close-minded GOP obstructing Obama’s plans has been a strong reason for the state of the economic anxiety. Close minded people don’t open their minds to listen to the truth, they look for information that verifies their views.

Is Obama in over his head? Does he just want to get out of the White House and go home? Or, does he have a plan to deal with the world’s problems? We don’t know because one of his known weaknesses is the lack of being able to articulate what he is doing. We saw this with ACA, we saw this with Syria 3 years ago, and we continue to see a president unable, or uninterested in, telling the Country and the world his vision for a plan. 

My hope and goal is that everyone reading this will try to open their minds and start to try thinking of a bigger picture. No, Obama does not walk on water, neither is he the anti-Christ. A challenge for Blue and Red America: pull together for the benefit of all. 

Keep journalism independent with Triad City Beat

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Weekly newspaper and online news outlet Triad City Beat is only six months old but ready to grow into the next phase.

Help us buy more outdoor newspaper boxes, bring new voices into the paper, expand cultural coverage and hone in on investigative journalism.

Triad City Beat is an independent, free weekly newspaper. It’s owned and run directly by the journalists and team who work here. We carry the flag for no party or faction, and fiercely defend our editorial independence. Triad City Beat doesn’t shrink from defending LGBT rights, racial diversity and urban sensibility.

We have been working together for years and have received numerous awards for our work, including second place for investigative journalism and first place for editorials in the state last year. People love Triad City Beat because it is authentic and urgent. All killer no filler.

Independent arts coverage. Hard-hitting investigative reporting. Smart opinion writing. Breaking news. That’s what we do.

Jordan Green's daughter Amy Bell, one of our biggest fans.
Jordan Green’s daughter Amy Bell, one of our biggest fans.

We are built on the belief that ideas and hustle are worth more than money, but we still need your support to grow. The funds raised with this Kickstarter will allow us to establish an Investigative Journalism Fund, hire freelance writers and buy more distribution boxes to get the paper on the streets. 

Read examples of investigative work about who owns downtown High Point, a freelance cover story by Jonathan Michels about forced sterilization and another article about where money from a Republican fundraiser actually went.

If you’ve enjoyed Triad City Beat since it launched six months ago, we hope you’ll help us build on what we’ve started. Know that your contribution will help keep journalism independent in North Carolina.

Twenty Fourteen Is So Unusual Yet So Familiar ** We Can Change It

IMG_2175Look around the world. Crisis with ISIL in Iraq and Syria. Lebanon in a state of collapse. The United States torn by the latest race crisis and a vicious attacking of a president in his second term.  And, of course, the never ending Israel Palestine peace agreements.

Now, I didn’t really pay much attention to politics until it was thrust in my face on September 11, 2001 when 2 iconic towers that were 3 blocks from my home were demolished and I wasn’t able to return to my home for weeks. Then I started to pay attention. Yes I knew for the bombing in 1993 but killing 6 people was not the goal of the terrorists. It didn’t invoke fear in us New Yorkers or the country in general. 

Flash back to the mid to late 1980s. I was in college and paid little attention to politics. But, what I did hear was, “Reagan taking too many vacation days, Reagan out of touch with every day people.” Flash forward to 1998 with Bill Clinton. He was the victim of a vicious right wing mob mentality. Did he have sex outside of marriage? Yes. Was he not upfront about it. No, he wasn’t. To have the GOP impeach him over this was much more than nonsense and posturing. This was the exact time the Clinton administration was starting to go after bin Laden. Was their attention diverted because of the impeachment? How could it not have been?

Flash forward to 2006 – 2008. Everything Bush did was wrong. He was criticized about being out of touch, his approval ratings were dismal. He was accused of taking too many vacation days.

Flash forward to today. President Obama is being accused of all of the above. And more. If you think Obama walks on water and can do no wrong; stop reading my blog and tweets and get some help. There is no one on the face of this earth who does no wrong and doesn’t second guess themselves. So, Obama is being treated to the same treatment most of the 2 term presidents have been treated to. Don’t take it personally. Get over it.

More importantly is what happens next. ISIL is a serious threat, can Obama get a global coalition together to defeat, dismantle and destroy it? Let’s hope so. Not because we are DEMS or GOP, but because we all should want what’s best for the world. The race issue in the United States, I am not sure how that will be solved. I think the media does a horrific job of making things worse, just to get ratings. We don’t know what happened that day so we aren’t in a position to make a decision. Once we know swift action should be take; with facts in hand.

What can you and I do to make our current and future prospects in the United States better? It comes down to listening with an open mind. Don’t ever be like a Fox viewer who listens to nonsense all day. Hear. Listen. Learn.

When we know the facts we use our greatest power to vote.