Tuesday, August 30, 2022

Guest Blogger and Interview With Werner Stejskal and Introducing Oliver and Jumpy!




PERTH, WA, AUSTRALIA. Born in Vienna, Austria, Werner is now living in the paradise of Perth, Australia with his wife, two married children and three grandchildren. He worked in the printing industry for many years and later for the United Nations in Vienna. Now retired, after a full and eventful life, he began to write children’s stories. He found illustrators through Odesk, narrated them himself for YouTube and finally took the next step by publishing ebooks.

What is your book about, Werner? When I saw that the main character was a cat(!!) well, I was sold. I always like to share talking about cats to children and the merge of the kangaroo as a way for the cat to travel was a fantastic way to add fun to the duo!

“Oliver and Jumpy” are best of friends and experience many adventures together. Oliver is a black-and-white tomcat, who is very self-assured. As a matter of fact he says: “I love myself!” quite often. But his best friend Jumpy is aware that he is only putting up a front! Oliver has a soft heart and will always want to help others. The great thing is Jumpy’s pouch, which Oliver loves to ride in! He calls her his kangaroo taxi!  Today, we have the first two books of an extensive series and more in the works.

Who or what influenced you to write children's books?

There are lots of fairy tales and bedtime stories around and many of them are quite violent and unsuitable for young children. This made me decide to write something different. On a flight from Europe to Australia I watched the movie ‘Magic on Belle Island’ with Morgan Freeman, where Freeman teaches a little girl to have imagination and write her first story. This inspired me so much! And the first stories with two main characters Oliver, the elegant tomcat, and Jumpy, his kangaroo lady friend, made their appearance.

Did you do any specialized research for your stories?

There was no need to research for the stories, but rather to find illustrators and the right software for doing the books and YouTube clips.

What challenges do you face while writing the stories?

I simply had to try thinking like a small child and imagine their reactions.

Tell us more about Oliver?

Oliver, the elegant tomcat, is a know-it-all individual, who thinks he is the best, but is always helpful to others. Like most cats, Oliver does not like to get wet, but generally does not fail to face any adventure that comes his way...

I enjoy how you include a new animal characters in each book. Are there other characters you see us meeting down the road?

Occasionally witches, magicians and giants. But most that young children will recognize from daily life...squirrels, ducks and so many more!

I notice you use somewhat of a regular format for your stories, but how do you decide on the adventures? 

I go through different scenarios of children’s stories and pick out one after the other, making sure they are age appropriate and factual related to what is happening.

How do you start another book??

I just pick a quiet spot, close my eyes and let my mind sail in the darkness. Eventually I can visualize an image which can become a story.

Preference for writing: Day or Night?

The night is for sleeping. I live very healthy.

What is your process for editing your work?

After the initial draft, I let the story rest for a while and then revisit. I revise a couple of times before letting my editor have it. English is not my mother tongue, so I need help with the grammar. It is usually a case of shifting the words into a different order. So far, there has been little problem in moving from language to language...The series is now available in more than English.

How do you come up with your book covers?

Actually, the cover is the first page of each picture book with title rather than text.

Do you think the book cover is important?

Sure, covers are important. But with a series it is a little different. A series needs brand recognition. I prefer to keep them simple, but recognizable. There are so many beautiful covers out there that one looks like the other. Just look at romance books! There is either a beautiful muscle man on the cover or a couple kissing. They are all generic! A series needs to be recognizable at a glance!

Which publishing platform do you prefer and why?

I prefer ebooks on all ebook platforms. It is just so much simpler. Print-on-demand will be another option later on. If a publisher wants to bring my books into shops then I will look at that as well. I just don’t see any money in it here in Australia, where most chains have closed.

What methods do you use to promote your work?

Currently I am doing everything I can do to collect as many reviews as possible. This takes an enormous amount of time.

Do you have any advice for new authors?

Produce a good product and persevere with promotion. Nobody will do it as well as yourself!

Which social media platforms do you use the most?

I use Google+, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, LinkedIn.

My website:


My Amazon author’s page: (You will always find a free full-length book there and the free Introduction to the series)


Do you like cats? Yes? I am glad, because I am a black cat with a white top hat. I have a few white spots on my fur too. Mum is white, you see! My name is Oliver. I am a very elegant tomcat with the shiniest coat in the world. I brush my fur every morning and always keep my nails trimmed! Of course, my hat is really refined too, which is another word for elegant.

Whenever you put on your new clothes, you can announce to everybody, "I am refined!" And everybody will think you are an elegant person. Well, enough of all that talk about me, although I can never talk too much about myself. I really think I am a cool cat. I love myself! Do you think this is naughty? You are probably right, but I can't help it.

My best friend’s name is Jumpy. You guessed it. She likes to jump a lot, because she is a kangaroo! She is a great girl and she lets me ride in her pouch! I get in and Jumpy jumps away and away! That’s a lot of fun. I bet you would like to ride in her pouch too, wouldn't you? You are probably a bit too big. I am quite small, so it is OK. I love it, but after a while I need to rest. All that up and down makes me dizzy. It's a bit like being on a roller coaster.

One day I was in Jumpy’s pouch, happily hopping through the fields. It was a very sunny day and I wore my white hat and funky sunglasses. Sun is beautiful, but too much of it burns your skin! My fur coat protects me though. I don’t need to worry about buying the hottest fashions. What if I shaved off my fur? Could I dress up like people do? What do you think?

We were hopping across the fields, when Jumpy stopped suddenly. It was so unexpected that I fell out of her pouch, bouncedy bounce down to the ground. Amazingly, I did not fall very hard, but very soft! But that softness screamed loudly! I had fallen on a mole.

Moles are creatures who live in the ground and love to dig tunnels. They are much smaller than cats. Sometimes they come out from their holes. Moles are blind, because they do not need eyes below ground. That’s why she didn’t notice Jumpy coming. Jumpy only saw her at the last second so she made an emergency stop. I was saved, but the mole appeared quite unhappy about the disturbance.

After I stopped turning around and around, because I was still dizzy from the jumping, I apologised to Molly the mole. She recovered quickly and was not really hurt. Then she even got friendly with us. "I have just made lunch," she said, "why don't you join me? I have the tastiest worms and bugs. Would you like some?"

You see, that’s what moles eat. A kangaroo prefers grass. I find the occasional bug quite tasty, but don't fancy slimy rainworms. Jumpy made an excuse not to accept the offer. "Thank you very much, but we are watching our diet!"

Molly was not unhappy about it, since she could now eat everything by herself. "Come and visit me again, but without any accidents next time! I think you are a very elegant cat, and a very jumpy kangaroo. I like you guys. Of course, I am a lady myself and don't eat just any bugs, but only the best!"

After this adventure, we decided to go home for a nap. I suppose you are having your bug dinner now and hope they don't taste too crunchy. Next time I will tell you about Ducky, the duckling. See you later, alligator!

You know already that I am a fancy cat. There is something I haven't told you yet. I cannot eat birds or mice, because I am allergic to them! I can only eat crunchies for cats. You know that kind that smells fishy! So, whenever I am hunting a mouse, because that's what cats are supposed to do, and if I can catch her, I pat her shoulder and say: "Thanks for the chase. Let's do it again some time. There you go!" The mouse would quickly run away, not believing her good luck.

I can also eat real fish. Unfortunately, they are very hard to catch. We have a small lake nearby and sometimes I wait very quietly by the side of the water until a fish swims by. Cats fish with their claws, not with a fishing rod, as you know. At least I have never seen one do that. Have you? On one of those fish-catching days, while Jumpy was eating her grassy lunch near me, I was just about to hook a fish.

Suddenly we heard a very pitiful "Chirp, chirp, chirp." This is the sound small ducklings make before they have their change of voice. Then they cry "Quack, quack, quack!" So this baby duckling was nearby and obviously in trouble. "Jumpy, see what the problem is," I called. I did not want to scare the duckling even more. She might think I wanted to eat her!

Jumpy said, "Look up in the sky!" A big eagle circled high up in the air, ready to dive down and get himself a baby duckling for dinner. "Be quick, Jumpy," I cried, "You have to save her!" So she jumped towards the chirping sound, and I followed closely behind. "The eagle is diving down! Where is the duckling?" I yelled. Now you could hear mother duck quacking in alarm. She had also realised the danger for her baby, but could not help much. Only Jumpy was big enough to scare him off!

Have you ever seen an eagle close by? They have awfully strong beaks and claws and can pick up a duck easily and fly away with it. Well, we don't want to let him do that! So we all cried: "Go away eagle! Go away eagle!"

You can help too! Shout together with us! We were shouting and running, and running and shouting, and still could not see the chirping baby. Then Jumpy pointed out," There she is. Tangled in the reeds!" The eagle started to descend rapidly. We were jumping and running as fast as we could to get there first.

Jumpy arrived just as the eagle extended his claws to pick up the duckling. "Oh no, you don't!" he cried and boxed the eagle in his side. "You are stealing my lunch," the eagle protested and flew away mad. The duckling was saved, even though she was very frightened.

"Quack, quack, quack," called mummy duck and daddy duck, coming quickly to the side of their baby. Of course, the brothers and sisters named Quick, Quack, Quip, Quop and Quish, also arrived as fast as they could. All the ducks were very grateful that Jumpy saved Queck. They did a lot of very noisy quacking and chirping. After a while, they finally quieted down, and Jumpy explained to them that I was allergic to eating birds and that they were quite safe with me.

So we still had an enjoyable afternoon, with the ducklings hopping into Jumpy's pouch and having a ride kangaroo style. In the end, some of them would even jump on my back for fun. What a picture! An elegant black cat with ducks on his back! Duckybye!

Hi Everybody, and thanks so much to Werner Stejskal for spending time at book Readers Heaven to talk about his first, and continuing, children's series. This is the first time I'm sharing about a series that is one of my favorites for children! Yes, Of Course, Oliver is the reason for me...but, hey, I don't not like all animals, I just like to read about cats more...Why? Because I have shared a home with so many over at least 50 years and have found them quite wonderful as friends and companions... In fact, my absolute favorite type of book is cat cozy mysteries that merge my favorite furry friends with my favorite type of fiction--mysteries...

I am amazed just how much Werner has expanded since I first grabbed a copy or two of his books... I see that Chinese, Spanish are now available in this series, and that he has expanded beyond the Oliver and Jumpy books! He is obviously prolific and must be a great story teller for his family, since he has no problem thinking like he did as a child, and sharing those adventures of seeing his first mole...et.al. I have to admit that I share quite a few of my stories about 'coons, deer and more that come around my log cabin... 

So, do check this writer out. His books are fun and there is a "touch of kindness and love" in each that seems to be just right for sharing with a new, young reader! And You older will enjoy reading them, first, as well!

God Bless,


Sunday, August 28, 2022

It was in the Early 1960s that Records and Book Security Became Part of My Life... Looking at Today's Disregard of National Security by Former US President


For whatever reason, I was hired into positions, from the very first, of dealing with secure and confidential issues for a major land-grant university. My first job was to handle the employee records, which included, the introduction of all benefits and financial matters that needed to be addressed upon employment. 

All of those important employment documents were immediately delivered by me to the Payroll Office, to ensure that each employee would begin to be paid...

Of course, I appreciated the element of trust that was placed upon my first position, and, later, as I gained more and more access to what are considered confidential, highly secured records. For instance, I was involved in creating options for annual pay raises to be explored by central administrators. As you probably can guess, that was a bit of information that would be important to all employees if they could gain awareness of the amount, or that there would be no increases...which did happen from time to time. By that time, my mother was also employed on campus and she and I specifically talked about my involvement and inability to discuss such matters...

Later, I received budgetary responsibility for repairs and renovations for general-purpose classrooms across the campus, and ensuring funds were requested and used... and later, managing the creation and maintenance of the complete facilities inventory, including land, buildings and individuals rooms information to provide for basic information for budgetary planning for federal reporting, senior administration fiscal planning, as well as day-to-day use of each and every space available and allocated to deans and directors of university activities...

Taking on the, first, audit of the university's capital budget, which showed a deficit of over $1M was due to the university by the Board of Regents, and then creating a project budget management process to ensure budgeting and management of a multi-million dollar capital budget and that no further financial errors could occur, was what moved me into the position of Associate Director for facilities planning and management, as well as overall continuation of all previous duties...

It is the last major project that I want to spotlight. I directed the creation, data gathering from physical plant employees, and the data base upon which a multi-million deferred maintenance budgetary assessment need was created. It including a comprehensive submission report which was used by the director of physical plant to make a major budget request for an ongoing deferred maintenance budget allocation. Unfortunately, it was not accepted by that administration. Seeing the political climate that had evolved there, I decided to retire, since I had sufficient years of employment to do so. It is sad to note, that the reason that major repairs would again be postponed was in order to build a new building, which would be much more "showy..." for the officials at that time. Yes, power seekers can be found at every level in every institution.

At that time, there was nobody in higher management involved in anything I did... Yet I did it.  The report, I presented to the appropriate director-level individual. I gave all of the computer-access information on the individual data elements, estimates, et. al., to the assistant director who would be most interested, since it included a complete new, generated, land asset inventory, together with cost estimates, to the assistant director. Finally, I pulled together all of the basic data gathering, including individual cost estimates, per building, or specific land location... and provided it to the supervisor of the unit which would be able to use it for daily activities, even though the overall budget project had been denied.

And, of course, it goes without saying that I have dedicated my time for over a decade helping writers improve their efforts in one way or another--doing what I can to make their work the best it can be and/or telling as many people as possible why I would, or would not, recommend that they read their books.

As far as I am concerned...and, I hope, all Americans who are concerned about the security of our Nation, there is NO justification for ANY records to have ever left government facilities!

Please allow the Department of Justice to complete their investigation. We need accountability and action on those laws that have been violated, of course, as a direct result of his continuation of The Big Lie that the election was not "real."

All I hope is, that this guy who was elected into a position he never should have had, "for real" in any aspect of his interaction with Americans be indicted for all of the damage he has caused.

The matter of integrity, honesty, truth, and perseverance to basic moral character traits is failing greatly in these days when those who claim to be christian nationalists think nothing about stealing, lying, cheating and more in order to gain sought-after power, no matter who is hurt... All of us must act diligently to ensure that, in all ways, the needs of America are placed above the needs of those who seek office purely for power... We must do better!

God Bless,


Friday, August 26, 2022

Cowboy by Staci Stallings - Choosing Favorite Author to Just...Sit...Back...and...Enjoy! Featuring Music of Morgan Wallen!


“Ashton, what in the world are you doing up there?” Barry Braxton yelled to the stonewashed jean-clad figure leaning perilously over the edge of the top row of bleachers. 

“These bleachers have to be up by seven,” Ashton yelled back over the din of workers surrounding him without so much as looking down at his manager. 

“They will be,” Barry called, “but if you fall, we won’t be needing them anyway.” 

Irritation at being treated like a three-year-old crawled through Ashton’s chest as he twisted the wrench on the bolt he was working on with three more quick jerks. “I’m not going to fall, Barry.” 

“Well, why don’t you come on down anyway?” Barry set his hands on the rolls of excess weight just beneath his off-brown, button up shirt. “Really. There’s no reason for you to be up there. I’m sure the crew can get it.”

“Look around you, Bare.” Ashton waved the wrench angrily. “We go on in three hours. Does it look like they’re going to be ready?” Barry shook his balding head in disgust. He really couldn’t argue with that as much as he obviously wanted to. With the concert set to start in three hours, Ashton knew his manager would’ve preferred for him to be in his dressing room getting ready rather than tightening bolts on the bleachers for their latest venue. However, here he was twisting bolt after bolt tighter and tighter, wrenching his anger and frustration into them as if that would somehow make everything better. After a full thirty seconds Barry stalked off leaving his golden egg hanging off the edge of a set of bleachers that looked like it might fall any second. Ashton didn’t so much as watch him leave. Barry, of all people, knew Ashton’s stubborn streak ran a mile deep and just as wide. And the fact that he had acquired a death wish in the last year didn’t help matters. Trying not to think lest the memories swarm him again, he bent his head and body into the work. If he could just keep working, keep moving, keep going, somehow he would find a way past the hurt. If he didn’t, Humpty Dumpty would look easy to put back together by comparison.

I have learned after reading many books written by Staci Stallings, that, no matter the genre, I will enjoy her stories... One thing, though, is that whenever there is a reference to music, songs will be "brand new" as written by the author... How I wish I could hear her words with music! So, instead, I've selected a few songs that seemed to be relevant...hope you think so too!

If you stop and think about it, ever single relationship between two people will be--different. Yet, the same... Books are written to share unique stories, yet based upon a certain set of factors that will slowly evolve, entertain and lead to a satisfying conclusion--most times. This story is not different, yet the two personalities created by Stallings, makes readers able to sit back, meet these individuals and, soon, be so involved that we think we actually know them as friends or, at least, acquaintances.

Ashton Raines is a country singer that has been selected as Male Vocalist of the Year three years in a row, he won Entertainer of the Year last year and Song of the Year, Album of the Year, and... Life was good and his group were successfully touring most of the time... That is, until, Ashton's wife died... and he was devastated since they had been so close and she had been there by his side constantly...

Things had been building and then one night he just snapped--and had to get away... He walked out, on his own, and wound up in a small out of the way country diner where a waitress offered to get him coffee and maybe something to eat? 

At some point the city lights had turned to winding roads, mountains, and trees, but Ashton couldn’t clearly remember how or when that had happened. All he could see was freedom. Everywhere he looked was freedom. No guitars, no managers, no people, no buses. Just him and the open road stretched out in front of him. It was the most amazing feeling in the world. He was free. But it was as though his mind wouldn’t allow him to enjoy anything for more than just a moment because just then he heard her voice...

Beth McCasland had been on her own as a single mother, widowed for more years than she wanted to count, but she had found somewhat of a welcome in a little town where she had been working as a waitress, making friends with Lynn, the other waitress on her shift, and the owner, as much as they would allow a relationship. She was barely making it financially, but didn't have many options. So, when Lynn came in talking about an upcoming concern nearby, featuring the country male voice of the year, she was so involved with thinking, that it took awhile to realize that Lynn wanted her to go to the concert with her. Not... was her first thought... But, of course, things worked out as they were supposed to, of course, and she attended the concert. And had to admit she'd very much enjoyed it...

But that didn't prepare her for the night she was called in for emergency noght coverage  and was therefore there when Ashton walked in, drenched from the heavy rain and looking like he'd lost his best friend. And, indeed, she learned that he had...

But even though things felt so strange, Beth felt compelled to start talking about how God was available to help Ashton through anything he was going through... That was not what Ashton expected or wanted to hear... He had felt God had no business taking the one good thing he'd had in his life... He had been living his dream until his reason for living was stolen...

Like I said, Stallings has a way of making her characters seem to come alive in our own lives, like we begin to have a vested interest in them... Now, confess, a widow and a widower might not be unusual...but with one putting God right into the mixed from the beginning discussion, now that's something that grabs our heart strings, doesn't it? Sure, the story, the plot is not so new that we can't see what's going to happen...but what we so enjoy is watching... watching how the "do-si-do" between the two characters--and God--finally makes it all come out just like, it seems, that a plan has been successfully executed. 

If you are somebody who has never met Stallings through her books, then this might just be a great one to start reading! Especially if you like country music! And, BTW, I'd never heard of Morgan Wallen, since I'm normally reading rather than listening to country music...LOL... So, was my finding him a God Incident?

God Bless,


Wednesday, August 24, 2022

A Promises To Keep Continuing Discussion - Featuring the 9-11 Event... Remembering - Comparing...


Full disclosure: I do not have absolute faith in the judgment and wisdom of the American people. We’re all human, and we can all be misled. When leaders don’t level with citizens, we can’t expect them to make good judgments. But I do have absolute faith in the heart of the American people. The greatest resource in this
country is the grit, the resolve, the courage, the basic decency, and the stubborn pride of its citizens. I know thousands of ordinary Americans, faced with burdens that would break many of us, who get up every single day and put one foot in front of the other and make it work. Most do it without demanding special favors or pity, even while the more fortunate among us stand willing to help ease those burdens. I’m convinced of the generosity, determination, and capabilities of our fellow Americans. I’ve seen it over and over, but it came home to me dramatically in the hours after the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon on September 11, 2001.

One of the benefits of reading books is that, when there is an historical event, there are ways in which what is being said in the book can be verified. At least when that event creates such an impact on all of our lives! Thus it was with interest that as I read, I discovered that Joe Biden was "involved" on that day! At that time, he was a well-known Senator who got things done... So I was pleasantly surprised to learn that it was Joe Biden who had first addressed the public after the attack...

The planes hit while I was on the train from Wilmington to Washington, and when I came out of Union Station that morning, I could see a haze of smoke rising from the Pentagon across the Potomac. It was a morning of surreal stillness. There was almost no breeze. It was so quiet, I could hear myself breathe as I walked toward the Capitol dome. I was struck by the warm glow of sun on my face and the sharpness of the cobalt blue sky, which was strangely unmarred by air traffic. But beneath the calm there was a gathering feeling of panic on the ground in Washington. The Capitol building had already been evacuated. Senators, House members, and their staffs were milling around the park between the Capitol and Union Station. Some were talking on cell phones. Some were already arguing about the need for funding Reagan’s Star Wars missile defense system. The Capitol police refused to let anybody back into the building, but they were offering briefings for a select group of elected officials at a command post on the top floor of a four-story building behind the Senate offices. Most members were camping out on the floor below. So I was shuttling back and forth between floors, trying to persuade anyone who would listen that we should get back in session and show the American people we were taking care of business. Nobody would budge; leaders in both parties were being told they should be prepared to leave town. Congressman Bob Brady, who had also been pushing our colleagues to get back in session, finally gave up in disgust. He thought he might be able to do some good back in his home district in Philadelphia, and he offered to drop me in Wilmington on the way. On the way out, Brady and I could sense the panic rising as we walked through scores of reporters outside the building; they were understandably anxious to get some word of what was happening. 
“Senator Biden,” a reporter from ABC said to me, “senators I’ve spoken to and members of Congress as well have said we are now at war. Senator Shelby, who is the ranking member on the intelligence committee, has said we are now essentially at war. We have to be on a war footing. And Senator Chuck Hagel says we have to start securing our borders, locking down our airports, revisiting the way we protect our public institutions. What about that?”
“I hope that’s not true,” I told her and her listening audience. I would say it another way. I would say we’ve come face-to-face with a reality. A reality we knew existed and we knew was possible. A reality that has happened to varying degrees in other countries. But if in fact, in order to respond to that reality, we have to alter our civil liberties, change the way we function, then we have truly lost the war…. The way to conduct the war is to demonstrate that your civil liberties, your civil rights, your ability to be free and walk and move around in fact are not fundamentally altered…. There are a lot of things we can do though to diminish significantly the possibility of this happening again without changing our character as a nation…. This nation is too big, too strong, too united, too much a power in terms of our cohesion and our values to let this break us apart. And it won’t happen. It won’t happen.

Many had already left, including the vice-president. President Bush was being flown from safe place to safe place and would not speak to the country until that evening. 

The Twin Towers had collapsed by the time we got on the road toward Wilmington, and the death estimates in New York were five, six, seven thousand—maybe more. But when I got home and put on the television, I saw that the American heart was still beating strong. Doctors and nurses were standing by at hospitals in New York City, ready to treat the wounded. Snaking through the streets and up the avenues were long lines of New Yorkers waiting to give their blood, even though word was being passed that no more blood was needed. I could see it in their faces: They were hungry to do something, anything. Nobody was talking about war footings or payback. They just wanted to do their part. That was the day that reminded me that even in a moment of almost total silence from their leaders in Washington, Americans would rise to the occasion. Watching those people on the blood lines, I was convinced the country would get up off the mat, face the new challenge head-on, and emerge stronger for having done it. To me this is the first principle of life, the foundational principle, and a lesson you can’t learn at the feet of any wise man: Get up! The art of living is simply getting up after you’ve been knocked down...

As we look toward another anniversary of 9-11 coming next month, so many different thoughts bombarded me:

  • The realization that it was Senator Biden, not then republican President Bush who spoke to the nation. Surely there was some way for Bush to get a message out sooner?
  • The confirmation of my opinion of Joe Biden, who, instead of moving quickly from danger, took the time to address the nation--He cares so much about Americans!
  • The comparison of the 9-11 terrorist attack to the 1-6 insurrection attack on our Capitol by domestic terrorists.
  • The recognition that not only did the president not address the nation immediately, but we have learned that he not only initiated it, but wanted to actually go there and participate (lead) his followers in overthrowing the election! 
  • The knowledge that, during the 2016 election, Joe Biden did not immediately move to run for president. However, as he watched what was happening--how hate was being incited, along with fear and so much lying that people didn't know who or what to believe.
  • It must have been a difficult decision for Biden to consider running again. His long career had been full of many accomplishments and he would be seen as possibly too old to run for the presidency. Yet, with Covid and Trump's failure to even begin to plan for dissemination, and, at the same time, giving so many mixed signals about just how bad it was--in fact, admitting to a writer that he just didn't want to tell the people the truth, Joe Biden decided to step in and do what needed to be done.
  • And, even with so many different issues occurring after the devastation and death of Covid, he was not only able to get the distribution process started quickly, but also had a total plan of action of what needed to be done in every area.
You know, folks, those who claim he was and is not now able to run again, are being lied to as well. His opposition is doing all they can to continue to lie about Biden and his administration, but also to imply that he has not handled everything. When, in fact, he has done more, even with almost no republican support in getting things passed and moving forward. 

Using pictures of when he was distraught over something, and claiming it reflects he is not able to handle the job is especially cruel, given just how much knowledge and experience he has provided and shared to get all of the things accomplished that were never achieved before.

Yet, even having to deal with Trump's continued control of republicans is unbelievable and surely could not have been predicted... I say, put the blame where it belongs. With the republican party that continues to use lies, tricks, and false conspiracy theories to try to continue the fear of losing our democracy... our freedoms... It will not happen!

Major issues have arisen because of Trump and his "loaded" Supreme Court. Women and men all over the world are questioning America going backward, taking away what was made into law! And threatening even more... 

The republicans again refuse to deal with the use of military weapons for the murder of children, and adults...claiming it is not a problem...yet we have seen an increase of violence, many times from those who participated in the insurrection...to go against even the FBI and their actions... This has GOT to Stop...

And, by the way, one final opinion. I have NO desire to see the affidavit that brought about the FBI's need to restore records taken by Trump... We need to ensure that there is nothing to prevent him from being found guilty of espionage and more... Wait...the law may be slow...but more and more guilty designations are being made for Trump and his cult followers.

In the meantime, be careful of those running for congress... Even Mitch McConnell has hinted at the quality of republican candidates... One we know was part of the insurrection is now running for governor in my state! We've never heard of him before... Then Dr. Oz was brought in as a "ringer" to try to garner Trump follower support...and everybody knows he doesn't live in PA! Be careful and do your research. Right now, people are working from a plan of action that includes lies, fear, and removal of rights for many of us...Do remember that the republican party has changed! It is no longer party to party...it is Trump's cult against the Democratic party...and they used guns to garner fear! Stop the Madness!

These final thoughts are, of course, my personal opinions, of course... But I have made sure I keep up to date on what is happening... That's all I ask of you.  Do your own research and discover the reality... Check out for instance the democratic nominee running against DeSantis... He WAS a republican and when he saw what had happened to the party, he first became an independent, and then a democrat, probably for the same reason I did, so that we could vote in the primaries... He is a former republican party governor...and easily won... Personally, I think that should tell republicans something about who is controlling the party now... 

And a final thought...Joe Biden was called, later, by President Bush, to thank him for speaking on behalf of the government... noting that it was exactly what needed to be said... Doesn't it make you wonder why neither the vice-president or president could manage to speak to Americans on 9-11 until it was already over... ?

God Bless

Tuesday, August 23, 2022

The Heart of a Woman by Maya Angelou - Why White Nationalist Want Her Removed from Libraries...From History - We MUST Fight Against The Loss of Precious Words!

In the book Speak, by Laurie Halse Anderson,   Maya Angelou was mentioned quite a number of times by the main character. She had been given a picture that was just taken down from the school library--because this wonderful author was no longer welcome there. Melinda thinks the school board must be scared of Angelou--why else would her books no longer be available in the library...nor her picture, that even has some beautiful words, and not be able to be viewed by students...???

Melinda hangs her new picture  in an old closet that seems not to be used by anybody, and she starts scrubbing, bringing in a blanket, and, talking to Maya, telling her that she might bring some books in to read while she's there, thinking that, maybe, she would find some peace in the midst of the day, especially when she could no longer stand having everybody stare at her or shun her... Or, worse, expect her to talk to them! She had vowed she would not speak after IT had happened... It was easier to just hide away from anybody...

In her book The Heart of a Woman, Maya Angelou wrote, “If one is lucky, a solitary fantasy can totally transform one million realities.”

Sure I knew who she was and, of course, follow her on Facebook 

“Life is going to give you just what you put in it. Put your whole heart in everything you do, and pray, then you can wait.” posted 8-21-22 in celebration of her life
and had even referenced her works from time to time, but when the author of Speak spoke about the solitary fantasy, I could not help but think about how a young 13-year-old girl who had just been raped would find herself finding comfort in fantasy, as opposed to her reality, for surely she was in solitary, even if self-imposed, upon facing the new reality of her no longer being a virgin--and NOT by her own decision... I knew Maya would understand...

It didn't take me long to decide that I, too, wanted to spend some time with Angelou, and a memoir could be exactly what I wanted to read... I'm very glad I did! Indeed, she is a woman to be reckoned with and a possible role model for many girls and women around the world... if she were allowed to be...

Maya Angelou would be one of those writers who would be banned by white nationalists, simply because of her race... For those us who have read some of her words, we cannot help but learn from her--of pain, of love, of life... She has so much to tell... to all people, no matter what color you are! Thus, when she is confronted by those she has just met that they seemed to be talking about whites so much, she thought to herself:

In the ensuing years in California the jokes came scarcer and the jobs grew meaner. Anger was always present whenever the subject of whites entered our conversations. We discussed the treatment of Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., the murder of Emmett Till in Mississippi, the large humiliations and the petty snubs we all knew were meant to maim our spirits. I had heard white folks ridiculed, cursed and envied, but I had never heard them dominate the entire intimate conversation of a black family. 

In the Killenses’ home, if entertainment was mentioned, someone would point out that Harry Belafonte, a close family friend, was working with a South African singer, Miriam Makeba, and South Africa was really no different from South Philly. If the West Indies or religion or fashion entered the conversation, in minutes we were persistently examining the nature of racial oppression, racial progress and racial integration. I fretted at the unrelenting diatribe, not because I disagreed but because I didn’t think whites interesting enough to consume all my thoughts, nor powerful enough to control all my movements...

You know, folks, over the years I've lived, I've had many occasions to talk to, see, and watch those who are Black. I remember a personal experience that made me realize that I may be different from other white people--maybe--you'll have to decide for yourself. Many, many years ago, I was attending a basketball game on campus. I sat with an acquaintance at that time--I must admit after the experience, I chose not to become more involved with her, although I had many opportunities. 

Working on campus, I looked around to see who I knew, picking out both men and women, of different races, with whom I'd had contact. One of the men turned just as I was looking at him and waved to me--I returned the greeting with a warm smile. The woman sitting beside me asked if I knew him and I said, yes, he was a professor on campus. She then began a discussion about interacting with men of a different race. As usual, I was honest and open, at least at first when I am with somebody and responded that, yes, I thought he was attractive (which he was). Somehow she got around to dating and a relationship. All I can remember was that, I responded, that, for me, I would first think about any children from such a relationship. At that time, mixed races was "frowned upon," to be polite, and I said that I wouldn't want to have children have to face such prejudice...

Well, before the month was over thereafter, I had a favorite aunt ask me if I was dating Black men. I said no, of course, since I wasn't dating anybody in those days. LOL... I asked why she was asking and she told me that she'd been told that I was or would be willing to date men of a different race...and then shared who had told her--of course, it was the woman with whom I had briefly chatted at the game... Well, I learned, that day, that I could not trust that acquaintance--who would remain merely an acquaintance... 

However, since I was on campus, I would watch as Blacks would congregate in a far corner of the student union, so of course wondered about "separation..." Yet, I worked with both Black men and women and, indeed, had a good friend in high school, as well as had become friends with those with whom I worked.

One thing I saw was that Black people support each other more than, in my opinion, white people. As I grew older, I can recall one writer with whom I worked that, when I needed personal help, it was to him I turned, asking for prayer. At that time, I thought he would say, of course, I will... like all those white people who quickly write, sending prayers...and then go on to another post to comment. But this Black elder, stopped right there, and, online, he started to write/pray for me! His words were appropriate to the situation, his words were sincere in expressing concern for me...and I knew He was a man of God because he spoke to God like he was on a first name basis...* Anyway, over time, I have felt that people of the Black race, are far more family-oriented than most white people I knew... And I realized that, perhaps, it was because of how white people have traditionally treated those of the Black race... It must be much
harder, I think, to be a Black parent, knowing that, even in today's world, that they must teach their child(ren) about prejudice, bias, and potential violence against them just because of their race... I have come to respect the Black race, just because of all of those I have met that, indeed, deserved to be respected...

As a young single mother, Maya traveled often, each time, her son would, sometimes, unwillingly quickly prepare to go somewhere and start over, for a short time. From her words, he seems to have been a very special boy (who died at the age of 77, as also an author and poet.) and was there for her during those years when she strived to be able to make enough money to provide for shelter and food. And sometimes, those friends had to remind her of what was really happening in America:
“Girl, don’t you believe it. Georgia is Down South. California is Up South. If you’re black in this country, you’re on a plantation. You have to deal with masters. There might be some argument over whether they are vicious masters, but be assured that they all think they are masters … And if they think that, then you’d better believe they think you are the slave. Maybe a smart slave, a pretty slave, a good slave, but a slave just the same.”

Even though this book and her others was written some time ago, you can and will find her words just about anywhere that shares about just how important one single person can become in America... So much so that I find, that it is more important to me to, now, celebrate her life, and share that she died at the age of 86, and just how sad, yet, defiant, she would be as today many white nationalists are striving to erase her and so many others from our history... I say to you, who claim to be Christian, that what you are doing by trying to erase the Black Culture, will NOT succeed! We will celebrate those words that have been shared and are still being shared even after her death on places like Facebook, because we want to remember her face, her words...and her gigantic love of life! And so much wisdom that there is NO way it can be stifled!

“I do not trust people who don't love themselves and yet tell me, 'I love you.' There is an African saying which is: Be careful when a naked person offers you a shirt.” 

“You can only become truly accomplished at something you love. Don’t make money your goal. Instead pursue the things you love doing and then do them so well that people can’t take their eyes off of you.”

Be sure that you always share wise words and not stifle those just because somebody else hates! God loves ALL He created!

Right Now! Celebrate The Words of Maya Angelou!


*By the way, I feel the same way about Joe Biden. I "know" he is a good man of God, because he speaks like one...his words come naturally to his tongue, and his acts toward all men and women are truly there to be seen as he continues to strive to help

Saturday, August 20, 2022

A Discussion About Our President - Based upon Promises to Keep by Joe Biden - Continuing


I've been reading Promises to Keep off and on for weeks and have just a few pages to finish this weekend. As I read, I felt more and more aware of just how much knowledge and experience Joe Biden has! And how lucky we are to have this man as our president at this time in America...

First, again, I want to establish myself as a political animal. I am
"It was more about doing good
 than being good."

now a confirmed democrat--for Biden, but for many years of my life, in fact, probably the first six decades, I was a cat...Yes, a cat! You know, one who sleeps through life, eating when fed, or if feral, going out to search for food when hungry... Specifically, I knew who was president and some of the things happening, but in a full-time job that included long hours and much pressure, and from which I ultimately went into job burnout and walked out, well, I didn't have the time or take the time to know what was happening nationally and world-wide...

Probably just like the majority of Americans, right? Anyway, just because I wasn't sure I wanted to be a jackass, so I went out to google the meaning...and found this instead! LOL  I predict most of us will be just as confused except that the creator had been bullied and apparently felt we, as citizens, may often think of politicians as bullies? Let me know if you can add to this tail...LOL

Anyway, what I discovered more and more is that my choice for our president has some really sound basis for doing so--at least from my personal opinion. Consider this issue...even before I read this book, I was opposed to solicitation of funds for candidates from the citizens! Still am, for that matter, although I did break down and contribute to Biden...because of fear and my assurance that he was the right man at this time! My point of reference was my background in Personnel and then in academic administration where the university, itself, paid for advertising and interviewing potential candidates. To me, this made sense. We all had already contributed to the government through taxes. So, why wasn't our taxes used to search and seek out those to fill vacant positions. While I recognize that the government is far larger than the average corporation, it is also a decentralized organization, each with individual budget allocations...so the head of each unit would need to plan for replacement of personnel, just as part of the normal annual budget planning. Believe me, it is really not a hard process to develop and operate an active personal services budget!

I admit though that I was surprised to see that Biden had written on this same subject!

Jim Eastland and I got off to a less auspicious start. I got crossways with him right away—on campaign finance reform. One of the few issues I really dug into my first year was election financing. There has been constant public plaint about public office being bought by big money and big corporations. And it’s a justifiable concern. 
Back in 1973 the liberals in the Senate were calling for reform along the lines of setting strict limits on individual and corporate campaign donations. But with another freshman, Dick Clark of Iowa, I was making the pitch for total public financing of elections, and Mansfield asked me to make a presentation about our proposal in the Democratic caucus. 
Freshmen rarely spoke in caucus, but I made my pitch. Once I got on a roll, I just kept going. Public confidence in the process was eroding with every election cycle, I reminded my Democratic colleagues, and the scandals surrounding the Nixon reelection campaign finances had been a new low point. Public financing was a way to win back the trust. We would never again have to worry about who our contributors were or what high crimes and misdemeanors stuck to them. It would free us all. We’d be beholden to no individual and no interest group. We’d be answerable to our true constituents only—the American people. 
And our proposal was simple: The government would finance every congressional election. A sitting officeholder, like those of us in the room, would get a certain amount of funding to work with, and because of the obvious advantages of incumbency, challengers would get that same amount plus an extra 10 percent. A minimal amount—a few dollars—from every tax return could easily fund federal elections, I explained. I’d done my homework; I had the math. When I finished talking and sat down, there was silence.
“Any comments?” Mansfield asked the room. Still dead silence. Nobody said a word. The senior leadership—Bob Byrd, Daniel Inouye, and Eastland—sat rock still at the front table. Eastland was chewing hard on his cigar. 
Later that day, in the cloakroom, Warren Magnusson literally yelled at me: “Biden, goddammit, get over here…. I want you to cut the crap. Shut it down. I didn’t spend thirty years in the U.S. Senate to give away my seat to some sniveling little jerk who got 10 percent more money than me.” 
But in the caucus that day, after the interminable silence, it was Eastland—and Eastland alone—who finally spoke up. “They tell me you’re the youngest man in the history of America ever elected to the U.S. Senate,” Eastland said, still chomping on his cigar. Actually, I was the second youngest ever elected, but it didn’t seem a good time to correct him. “Y’all keep making speeches like you made today,” Eastland continued, “and you gonna be the youngest one-term senator in the history of America.” 
With that Mansfield banged the gavel: “Adjourned!”

I REMEMBER FEELING that day like I was playing high school football again and I’d just taken my first tough hit of the season. Now I had to prove I wasn’t going to stay down. Game on. Let’s go. I was respectful of my colleagues, but I was not intimidated. I understood how improbable it would be to push through public financing of campaigns: When a rabidly conservative southerner like Eastland and a liberal westerner like Magnusson agreed on something with that sort of vigor, I knew I wasn’t going to find much support. But I didn’t back off; I was determined to push this. 
A few weeks later I testified before the Senate Rules and Administration Subcommittee on Privileges and Elections. And I was perfectly candid. I went on the record about my experiences with the machinists union and the wealthy investors in Delaware and the sense I got that their donations to my Senate campaign came with strings attached. I told the subcommittee members I believed the system turned off people who really wanted to be involved: “The small contributor, in my opinion, feels what in the hell difference does it make whether I make the small contribution because those Democrats are the product of big labor and those Republicans are the product of big business.” And I told them that we public officials were being ripped off by the system, too: “There is a great deal of pressure, in the one particular area at least, to prostitute our ideas, if not our integrity.” 
I believed then that real campaign finance reform is the fastest way to restore some measure of public confidence in the system. Nothing would do more to bind politicians to the average citizen than a guarantee of clean elections. Thirty-five years later I still believe that.

Well, folks, I have to say I was laughing in glee when I came upon this first "proposal" from our now President... No, he was not successful then or at any time since, but that did not change how he and I...and maybe YOU, feel about big money buying our government positions?

Consider the former president. Not only was big money following him, but he also didn't give up any ownership of businesses that could be controversial. And we all learned about how he would go weekly to golf or to his present home in Florida where he would invite people for meetings and thus bring big bucks not only for the meetings but for housing... Surely you are aware that many hotels in many areas complained that they weren't even able to attempt to solicit people to stay at their facilities, given that the "understanding" was clear where they would be staying... Of course, there was the excessive budget used for the presidential inauguration ball(s), the government rental of property in Trump Tower, and, of course, the infamous reason for his second impeachment when he attempted to bargain government funds in order for the president of Ukraine conducting an investigation on Biden's son's employment there. In face, there were routine issues that arrived for him and his staff that were questionable...yet never addressed! 

I won't go into all of the other ethics issues that took place while he was in office, including, for instance, a deal for his daughter, Ivanka's business, with the Chinese, based upon their "visiting" there for governmental reasons...

But, worse, let's look at what has happened since The Big Lie took control of the republican party... Trump continues to solicit donations from his followers for this or that "lie" that he has been charged with...and millions are rolling in, even while so many criminal charges are underway, including the latest on the Trump Organization which has resulted in the chief financial officer being indicated and convicted...that it is hard for us to even keep track... Tell me, who would reasonably expect to be paying for legal fees on his crimes? Only those who have denied truth and work to undermine today's democratic nation!

And, of course, I should include the millions that were solicited for a "wall" by his crony, Steve Bannon... who has also been indicted for fraud... 

In my opinion, the real reason for their to be republican anger by citizens in the continued cry for money TO COVER LEGAL EXPENSES FOR HIS AND OTHER'S LIES! 

Go figure...I can't, for the life of me, wonder how in the world that so many can have been conned, so easily...while so many of us have seen right through the use of government funds for personal, conflict-of-interest purposes... You may recall that the Ethics director resigned shortly after Trump took office, because he could see that "ethics" was never part of any equation and figured he was going to be out of a job anyway, if he "tried" to do his job...

Money buys power. In my opinion, it has resulted in corruption for many that are in office and/or seeking office.  Men like Doug Mastriano and "Dr. Oz" who are running in Pennsylvania!!! They are running for one reason... while John Fetterman, for instance, while in state office, refused to use state money to open the house he could have had, and instead stay in his own home... While the governor candidate has acted on behalf of those, for instance, who had been sexually abused and who had suffered without action until Josh Shapiro took on the difficult task of dealing with proof, the concurrent pain, yet the need for recognition by those victims... This is just one of the things he has tackled quietly in PA... and, for this one, caring, choice to recognize this great need  is enough...I'd take him over anybody else from the republican party! We surely don't need men who are in it for the money--for the power--and for their own ego! One Trump was enough...be careful... do your research, check out their character, their actions, and their background... check out multiple news sources if you have concerns... I did! You Should be sure that those you vote for will bring about those types of actions that Biden has accomplished in such a short time, even though it seems long, doesn't it?

And if you don't know already what accomplishments have been made by Biden's administration, you aren't, in my opinion, watching the right news sources... Change your channels and discover MORE!