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Kracking Up


Donald Trump GIF

 

Reality is slowly sinking into Prezy Poo.  He never really had a grasp on how government worked. 

Despite his best efforts he BLEW it.  He didn’t listen to those seasoned members of the GOP who advised him to talk about the economy, record unemployment. He instead went for FEAR, TERROR and MAYHEM.  As a result, many of his supporters bailed on him and went blue.

If he wants money for a Parade?  he may need approval from some of those low I Q members of Congress.

Money for a wall, that Mexico will eventually pay for? He may need approval from a one or two Mexicans.

What did you say about banning Muslims?  Again perhaps you should talk to the two Muslim members just elected to Congress?

 More than 100  women were elected in Congress last week.  Women were elected into the Senate, for the first time nearly 25% of the Senate is female.  More ladies will be heading States.  At one point in your administration you will need a WOMAN’s approval.  I’m sure you NEVER dreamed you would need permission from a woman.  Welcome to 2019 and beyond and remember, these women will outlive the men in your administration! 

Mr President, You have spent the last few years avoiding Americans. Your administration is filled with people who look like you.  Last last week America came to you. 

Congress writes the checks so , If you need any money, you will need approval from Gay’s, Native Americans, Muslims, Blacks, Asians and Mexicans, all Americans.

CityFella

 

 

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Kwazy Town “It’s our Prezy Poo” (Midterm Edition)


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Disclaimer:  If your a died hard supporter of the Prez ,this is “Fake News” so continue at your own risk!

 

Reporters at the White House said he was a bit off yesterday, pacing back and forth.

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_______________________________________________________

Wednesday, November 7th 2018

For the First time in nearly two years America Exhaled

(Click the link below for Story)

https://sacratomatovillepost.com/2018/11/07/exhale/

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You can watch the entire Shit Show on You Tube 

You may have to watch this  Four minute video twice  

Today, someone in the Trump Administration said CNN’s Jim Acosta attacked the aid.  So far the fake news media (with one exception) says Trump’s version of the video was altered (so SIT down!)

When Prezy Poo doesn’t like the direction of the media.  He creates new news. Yesterday, he was successful in changing the narrative.   Instead of talking about the historical mid term elections where were more women ,Native Americans and Muslims and gays were elected to office.  We talked about the dismissal of Jeff Sessions.   Well Done!

Prezy, likes to be in control.  His insecurity guarantee there are more Krazy days ahead.

CityFella

 

 

“Heck” No To Sacramento’s Measure U


Image result for no on measure u

In the fall of 2012, citizens approved Measure U a temporary half cent sales tax increase. Sacramento ,like the rest of the country was hit hard by Financial Crises of 2007-2008 .  Fire Stations, Libraries, Community centers closed all over the city.   There were layoffs in every department including Fire and police. Income from this tax hike would used to shore up police, libraries and other services throughout the city. A temporary tax increase that would end in March 2019

The tax increased concerned business leaders back in 2012.

The Sacramento Metro Chamber reminded city council couldn’t resolve its budget’s structural imbalance even when it had healthy coffers, pre-2008, so why should it be entrusted with millions now, especially during a struggling economy?

I don’t have confidence that the money will necessarily be spent wisely,” The sales-tax boost will take leaders’ “eyes off the ball” when it comes to making government more efficient and effective.

Sacramento Developer, Mike Heller

2018

Sacramento’s and tax based has grown significantly and Sacramento still cant manage its finances. Somethings wrong in City Hall

During the lean years, hundred of thousands was spent on Consultants to Retain the Sacramento Kings.

The City has recently issued $240 million dollars in bonds towards an unprofitable Convention Center which has been a drain on the city for more than twenty years.

Darrell Steinberg wants a tax increase that will have a negative impact on the city’s poor.  Business may suffer as the Sacramento will have the highest Sales Tax in the region.

While City leaders say the money will go towards Police, other core departments. The language isn’t there. There isn’t a mandate that says how the money is to be spent.

Don’t give Darrell Steinberg and city leaders A Blank Check.

Insist they live as we do, within our means !

SAY HECK NO TO MEASURE U

Facts Fiction and Don Lemon


CNN anchor Don Lemon on a Wednesday evening segment of CNN Live.

Perhaps there would be less outrage if the story was told by Wolf Blitzer or Jake Tapper.

There are many white men who are OUTRAGED!!!   Here you have a black man stirring the racist pot.    IF a white man said something about a Black man, they’d lose their jobs.    Megan Kelly lost her job over “Blackface’ so here we have a black man calling white men terrorist, he should lose his job is only fair!

There are white men in this rapidly changing world who believe that they are under attack.  It had gone too far and it far more difficult to be a white man in America and this morning advertisers and CNN will  demand that Don Lemon lose his job.

THE OUTRAGE

In the course of a week, 14 bombs were mailed to prominent Democrats.  On Wednesday, a white man attempted to enter a black church in Jeffersontown, Kentucky. Fifteen minutes later, he drove to near by Kroger Supermarket and killed two black people.  As the gunman passed a white shopper in the parking lot he said, I won’t shoot you. Whites don’t shoot whites.”   Saturday, a white man entered a synagogue and killed 11 worshipers and wounded six others including four Police Officers.

Cnn’s Don Lemon said Trump would have people believe immigrants are to be feared, but statistics reveal the biggest threats are home-grown.   He went on to say, we have to stop demonizing people and realize that the biggest terror threat in this country is white men, most of them radicalized to the right, and we have to start doing something about them. So ,have to start doing something about them. There is no travel ban on them. There is no ban — you know, they had the Muslim ban. There is no white-guy ban. So what do we do about that?”

“the biggest terror threat in this country is white men.”

This is what some people heard!   Other’s heard he called for a “white guy ban”               Fox news said Lemon was ranting!   Others called him a racist!

You decide, Listen. 

There are many in this country who supported the Presidents ban on Muslims and individuals from the middle east based on a unsupported belief that, Muslims hate Americans and want to destroy America.    The facts are white men are the principle source of terrorism in the United States and no one is proposing a ban on “white men” this is what I believe Mr Lemon meant.

When its not Fake News

Since 9/11 attacks in 2001, far-right violent extremists have killed 106 people in 62 attacks in the United States, while radical Islamist violent extremists have killed 119 people in 23 attacks.

https://www.gao.gov/assets/690/683984.pdf

From  2008 to 2016, there were almost twice as many terrorist incidents carried out on U.S. soil by right-wing extremists — many of whom are white — than by Islamist extremists.  It showed there were 115 incidents involving right-wing extremists and that those that ended in death were more deadly than incidents carried out by other groups.

https://www.revealnews.org/article/home-is-where-the-hate-is/

An analysis of the Global Terrorism Database by researchers at the University of Maryland published in 2017 shows a “sharp increase”in the share of attacks by right-wing extremists, from 6% in the 2000s to 35% in the 2010s. The share of attacks by religious extremists also increased, from 9% to 53% between the two decades.

https://qz.com/1435885/data-shows-more-us-terror-attacks-by-right-wing-and-religious-extremists/

White supremacists in the United States killed more than twice as many people in 2017 as they did the year before, and were responsible for far more murders than domestic Islamic extremists, helping make 2017 the fifth deadliest year on record for extremist violence in America, a new report states.

https://www.adl.org/news/press-releases/adl-report-white-supremacist-murders-more-than-doubled-in-2017

Politics of Fear

For decades,some members of the GOP have demonized immigrants from Mexico. They were accused of  straining our resources and crossing the border to have babies and to get on welfare.

Presidential Candidate Donald Trump took it further, he said the people coming from Mexico were bringing drugs, bringing crime and-they’re rapist.   There isn’t any subjective data that supports any of these claims.

A point of reference for some against Mexican immigration is the murder of Arizona Rancher Rob Krentz in 2010.   Krentz’s property is near the Mexican border. The Krentz family was accustomed to undocumented migrants crossing their 35,000 acres.  Because of this, many assumed he was killed by one of those undocumented migrants. His widow was convinced his was killed by an illegal immigrant. After an extensive search, no one has been linked to his murder.  Today, many are convinced he was killed by a Mexican national.

Less than a year after the Death of Mr Krentz.  Arizona passed a law requiring anyone suspected of being in US illegally to produce papers to the police.

 

Race Baiting 2018 (Donald Trump’s Evil Caravan)

Before I talk about our president current attempt to inject white fear in the midterms, I want to look back a few years.

But first thing’s first! What is “Race Bating?:    The unfair use of statements about race to try to influence the actions or attitudes of a particular group of people

A look Back to 1986

In 1986, a convicted felon named Willie Horton — who was serving a life sentence for murder — was released from a Massachusetts prison on a weekend furlough program, during which time he escaped and raped a woman. Then-governor Michael Dukakis had supported the prison furlough program, and when he ran for President in 1988, his opponent, George H. W. Bush, used that to his advantage. The “Revolving Door” ad never mentions Horton by name, but the connection was clear and the ad received considerable news coverage.

Bush Played on the fears of whites who were terrified of blacks.

2018, President Trump,  has told his base a Caravan is coming, filled with thugs, bad people, including people from the middle east.   He has a few days to convince his base these horrific people filled with diseases  (so says Fox News) will be here at any moment.  In a world where facts don’t matter.  These terrible people are walking and they only have 800 miles to reach our borders.  Tuesday, if you believe the president. Bringing lawless people who will kill the men and rape the women. (a small exaggeration)

The footage is several years old and his story about Democrats allowing illegals in is patently false.  Donald Trump is doubling down on his attack on brown skinned people using fear to get them to the ballot box.

Luis Bracamontes was first deported to his native Mexico in 1997, during the Clinton administration, after he was busted selling drugs. But, according to U.S. Immigration officials, Bracamontes managed return to the United States by 2001, when he was deported a second time for being in the country illegally. That was during the first year of the Bush administration.

Bracamontes was back in America again by 2002. He married a U.S. citizen and remained in the country even as the Bush administration deported people at a record rate, topped only by the Obama administration.

When Bracamontes shot and killed the two Sacramento county deputies in 2014, he had been deported once under a Democratic administration and once under a Republican administration. He had been back in the United States for at least six years during the Bush administration and five years under the Obama administration.  He is currently on death row in San Quentin.

It’s 2018

Perhaps, some white men would have been more comfortable with CNN’s Jake Tapper or  Wolf Blitzer talking about this subject.   One would think, in 2018 we are beyond this. Apparently not.

By the reaction,s only black people should talk about black on black crime in cities like Chicago or Detroit.  Or Hispanics in El Paso or Albuquerque.     Don Lemon ins’t racist, he didn’t attack white men, he talked about the news and the double standard.

I can’t remember a time when a white reporter was dismissed after reading statics about black people or any other persons of color.     I can remember when a reporter or personality was dismissed after saying  spic, called black women nappy headed hoes, fag and other disparaging words or terms on air.   Blackface, hasn’t been acceptable since the 1930’s neither are insulting ethnic impersonations.

 It’s 2018, come on America, come on

 

CityFella

Love in Pennsylvania?


Image result for donald trump rally murphysboro, ill

Photo: Google

President Trump loves the road.  If he could just run his administration out of a Luxury Coach, life would be swell.  He could cuss his staff out over the phone, no sour faces.  He could tour states like Montana and Kentucky where they love him   No rules, no you need to say…….  No you have too’s……. No boring teleprompters.  Just entertaining his base.  Being, High school inappropriate, irrelevant.  Working the crowd, ” Lock her up”

At a rally on Saturday, in an airport hanger in Murphysboro, Illionis a small town  (population 8000) over 300 miles from Chicago.  He was a bit subdued.   A few hours to the east, a City and a nation was grieving

The president had told reporters to expect a more muted rally performance.

For the first time, Trump didn’t break out his usual,  “Lock her Up” (a crowd favorite )  His performance WAS muted.   He went after Elizabeth Warren, but it was a mild attack, in which he conceded he couldn’t use his trademark moniker for her since she took an ancestry test. “No, I can’t use ‘Pocahontas’ anymore,”

This was difficult for him.  He knows his audience, this is were he gets the love.  They love the attacks, the insults.  But this night, the handlers said, we need you to be respectful, so bring it down and we mean it!!!

 Remember this date, October 27, 2018

After 10 minutes he told the excited crowd.  “If you don’t mind, I’m going to tone it down just a little bit,” “Is that OK?”   The crowd responded NO!!!

 “I had a feeling you might say that.”, said the President with a small smile.

“Paris is Burning”

The guys who aren’t any fun has told The President he has to go to Paris, or Pittsburgh.  The midterms are a week away, his poll numbers are crashing and could pull the party down.    Unlike, Montana, Kentucky, and Murphysboro there will be fewer people in red hats.   For nearly two years, Trump has avoided blue areas like Pittsburgh, in fact he has avoided most of America.

More than 44,000 people have signed an open letter from progressive Jewish leaders saying President Trump is not welcome in Pittsburgh until he denounces white nationalism.

He isn’t going to denounce white nationalism, after declaring himself a nationalist.  Throughout the day, moments before he addresses the Tragedy in Pittsburgh, his team is looking for a response that they hope will get them through next Tuesday.

There is a mobilization via Social Media.  Pittsburgh is few hours drive from New York, Philadelphia, Chicago and Washington DC.  Is there Love in Pennsylvania for the President?

CityFella

The Great American Health Care Panic


At a bowling alley, two older white women with shoulder-length blonde hair smile and lean on one another next to a pile of bowling balls.

 

 By: Michael Kruse/Politico.com

LEVITTOWN, Pa.—With whiffs of cigarette smoke wafting from the adjoining Band Box bar, surrounded by the nonstop clatter of bowling pins, Donna Brown and Kaci Rickert sat across from each other at a little low table one recent evening at the shabby, homey Levittown Lanes. The women’s league teammates ate salad and ziti and made small talk. Brown got up for her turn, and Rickert offered an admission in what was almost a whisper. “We’re on two different sides of the political aisle,” she said, “but we don’t discuss it.”

There was, however, one perennial problem they wanted to talk about. And when they started, they couldn’t stop.

“Health care,” said Rickert, 56, a hospice nurse.

“It’s the top issue,” said Brown, 64, a hairdresser.

“Cost … accessibility,” Rickert continued, ticking off her complaints. “There should be some way to limit the high deductibles that are rolling out now. It’s crippling people. It’s crippling me.”

Here in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, anchored by this again, iconic ,suburb  situated between Philadelphia and Trenton, New Jersey, along the Delaware River not far from where George Washington famously crossed , the margins of electoral victories traditionally are as slim as the spectrum of political opinion is vast. Heading, though, into this year’s midterms, there is one thing that everybody seems to agree on. No matter what they say about President Donald Trump (and they have a lot to say about him), and regardless of what they think of their relatively moderate Republican congressman, Brian Fitzpatrick , the people and particularly the senior citizens and retirees who live in the state’s newly drawn  1st Congressional District  are all but in lockstep when it comes to the health care system. It’s broken, they think, and it needs to be more available, affordable and reliable. On this topic at least, toxic partisan strife turns into across-the-aisle ire.

“I’m tired of this,” Brown said.

Somebody needs to fix it,” Rickert added.

This area long has been a lens through which to gauge not only the moods and preferences of Pennsylvania but the nation as a whole. Levittown , of course, is practically synonymous with suburbia, built by Bill Levitt in the early 1950s on great swaths of spinach and broccoli. Sold at the outset as “the most perfectly planned community in America,” it actually has served as a tableau of the country’s most intractable troubles, from racism to working -class resentments to today’s debilitating  opiold scorage . And the wider county runs the cultural gamut from threadbare strip malls and blue-collar dive bars in Levittown to gourmet olive oil shops and Italian coffee parlors in tonier Doylestown to wineries and nurseries, silver silos and red barns, feed stores and gun stores in its more rural reaches. It is home to yard signs that say “SAVE DEMOCRACY” and “PRAY FOR OUR COUNTRY” and “HATE HAS NO HOME HERE” and at least one Subaru Outback with a bumper sticker calling an assault rifle a “MODERN MUSKET” and challenging anybody who doesn’t like that to “COME AND TAKE IT.”

Spend a few days around these parts and one meets Republicans who used to be Democrats and Democrats who used to be Republicans and voter after voter who insists he or she picks the person over the party. For decades, this district (formerly the 8th, a court-ordered redrawing  earlier this year make  it a wisp more Democratic) typically has gone for the Democrat for president and a Republican for Congress. And the lastest polling shows Fitzpatrick with a narrow lead over Scott Wallace , a philanthropist and self-described “ Patriotic Millionare” running as a guaranteed check on Trump. But it’s always up for grabs .. “It’s one of those consummate gettable places for both parties,” said Christopher Borick , a political scientist at Muhlenberg College in nearby Allentown. This year’s stakes are especially high and it’s conceivable that control of the House of Representatives could come down to votes logged here. “It is the district in Pennsylvania that the GOP has to defend at all costs,” said longtime Pennsylvania politico Larry Ceisler .. “If this district goes Democratic,” Franklin & Marshall College pollster Terry Madonna said, “the wave is pretty substantial.”

There are, after all, four districts more likely to go blue next month—the 6th, 7th, 8th and 17th are likely or leaning, whereas the 1st is a tossup, according to a POLITICO analysis , making Pennsylvania one of the nation’s most fertile territories for potential pickups for Democrats. Add in the gubernatorial race and a  Senate contest —incumbent Democrats are heavily favored in both—and the state stands as an epicenter of these midterms. And older voters are most likely to decide those races; in Pennsylvania more than 1 in 3 registered voters are ages 50 or older.

Given the current volatile landscape, buffeted from the right in his primary  and now from the left by Wallace, Fitzpatrick, a 44-year-old Levittown native and former FBI agent bidding for a second term, has spent the past few years trying to distance himself from Trump while supporting his polices  the vast majority of the time. He voted for  the Trump tax cut, for example, but he also voted against the health care bill that would have gutted President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act. And he did that, he explained, because of what he’s heard back home.

It’s hard to miss.

“Health care is still the most important issue of substance on the table,” said Bill Pezza  , an adjunct professor of political science and history at Bucks County Community College. That’s true around the country, according to multiple polls , and it’s true here.

“Health care,” Republican retiree Marian Schofield, 85, said without hesitation when she was asked what she’s thinking about the most going into November.

“Health care,” echoed Alice Tardino, 64, co-owner of a video store and a Democrat.

“The biggest fear for a lot of people right now,” added Tina Davis, the area’s state representative and a Democrat, “is will they have health care? Will they be able to get it with pre-existing conditions? That’s the fear that you hear.”

At Levittown Lanes, Brown, who supports Trump, and Rickert, who does not, delved into the specifics of their stories. Brown used to be covered under her husband’s health care, but he retired four years ago from his metalworking job, and she’s had to pay for her own insurance ever since—now $869 a month. She turns 65 later this fall, and she can’t wait—so she can get Medicare benefits. It will shave some $600 off that bill, she said. “I’m paying more for my health care than what we pay for our mortgage.” Rickert, meanwhile, was out of work for six months last year because of a rib she fractured on the job and then pneumonia and other ensuing complications—and she lost her health insurance because of it, she said. She recently started with a new company, still as a nurse, mainly to get more affordable health care. It’s been disillusioning. “There’s no protection for people who get sick who are employed,” Rickert said. “Over time, it doesn’t matter. And medicine is a business. It’s not about people.”

“Everything you do, every job you take,” Brown said, “it revolves around health care.”

“I’m just disgusted with it all,” Rickert said.

Brown blames Congress. Both parties.

“They should have exactly what we have” for care, she suggested. “They’re servants of the people. Isn’t that what they say?” The way she sees it, though, what’s their incentive to work together to come up with solutions? “Until they get the same health care we do …” She brought up the S.S United States,  the derelict ghost ship, rusting just down the Delaware. “Put them all on there,” Brown said, “and sink ’em at sea.”

Four miles down busy New Falls Road, inside squat, gray brick Sparky’s World Famous Shot & Beer Bar, dangling strands of Christmas lights cut through the Camel haze of the dark bar on a late afternoon. Jim Hamlen, 75, a retired steelworker and onetime union Democrat wearing a T-shirt that says he’s a Vietnam veteran, took drags and sips of two-buck beer and talked about Trump. “When I first heard Trump, I thought, ‘Oh, no, here we go,’” he said. “But the more I listened to him, the more I thought about it. I always said to myself, ‘This country needs a president who’s a super businessman, who can make deals, and wouldn’t get pushed around.’” What he likes best about what Trump’s doing is the pledge to turn back the clock. “I would like,” Hamlen said, “to go back to the way it used to be.”

In Levittown, same as everywhere else, that means different things to different people. “We bought 5,000 acres, and we planned every foot of it,” said Levitt, a ceaselessly self-promoting, Cadillac-driving cross between Henry Ford and Walt Disney. “Every store, filling station, school, house, apartment, church, color and shrub …” But that, Dianne Harris pointed out  in the 2010 book of essays she edited titled Second Suburb, always was unrealistic: “The planned perfection of Levittown becomes a foil against which the imperfections of human subjects play out.” In 1957, angry mobs of white people hurled  bottles and rocks through the picture window of the three-bedroom ranch on Deepgreen Lane that housed their first black neighbors. In 1979, an estimated 2,000 residents rioted and 44 police officers got hurt during protests over the lack of gasoline in the wake of the Iranian Revolution. And in the decades since, as factories and industries of the postwar, middle class-ascendant era that facilitated livable wages for workers with limited education dwindled and disappeared, anxieties have intensified.

At the Band Box bar, Mike Episcopo, 52, the co-owner along with his father, fretted over the fact that the cost of health care for his family has doubled of late. “We got clobbered over the last five or six years,” he said. “It was probably $1,100 in 2010, and it’s $2,200 now.”

He’s not sure who or what to blame. But he did mention Obama’s ACA. “I can’t blame it totally on that, but …”

Maybe, he believes, Trump can fix it.

“He’s a little bit crass, but I think I agree with him more than I disagree,” said Episcopo, who has two autistic sons and coaches special-needs hockey. “If the election was today, I’d vote for him again, to see if this’ll come to fruition.”

What “this” on health care might be remains unclear. The consensus of dissatisfaction hasn’t translated into anything remotely approaching possible solutions. The reality is there aren’t even specific proposals to parse. An outright repeal of Obamacare is dead for the time being. The notion of universal health care is little more than a campaign scare tactic  The source of the gridlock is, of course, the extreme partisan divide.

“The biggest problem we face in this country … is hyperpartisanship,” Fitzpatrick said. “It’s very much a polarized, Hatfield versus McCoy, left versus right, red versus blue—and when you think about it, why? … Do people really believe that the Democrat Party or the Republican Party have the answer to all problems? It’s crazy.” Ranked in 2017 by the Lugar Center and Georgetown University as the third-most bipartisan member of the House, Fitzpatrick said he gets “a lot of grief” for even being a part of the Problem Solvers Caucus . He chalks it up to “insecurity and immaturity,” saying it takes “courage” to buck the party line.

The most courageous thing he’s done in Congress? “Voting against the health care bill under immense pressure,” he said. “Immense pressure. From all different corners. … I certainly got pressure from leadership.”

What decided it for him? “It was the people with pre-existing conditions, people with juvenile arthritis, juvenile diabetes, cystic fibrosis, autism—you know, these families that come in, they will just reduce you to tears, hearing their stories of the challenges they deal with, day in and day out, and if you have any heart at all and any soul at all, that is going to be a moving experience for you, and you’re going to understand that we have to accommodate those people, we have to take care of these people. So that fit into the Medicaid issue. … I became a big believer in Medicaid and Medicaid expansion,” he said.

Wallace, his opponent, is hearing the same thing from voters. “Just about every voter I talk to, their number one concern is health care. I believe health care is a human right and have made fighting for affordable, accessible coverage my top priority,” Wallace said in a statement.

Fitzpatrick continued: “Everybody should want the same thing: a system that works, that’s innovative, that’s affordable, and that’s universal. We’ve just got to figure out the best way to get there.”

Whatever that looks like, he insisted, it has to be bipartisan.

That seems unlikely. At a local senior center, retired teacher Karren Cherrington, 73, decried Trump and an administration that she sees engaging in an ongoing assault on women. “We spent a long time earning our rights, and I’d like to keep them!” she stressed. “It took us till the ’20s to get the vote and until the ’70s to have control over our own bodies!” Cherrington then apologized for getting so emotional. “Forgive me,” she said.

Across the room, Eddie Fluke, 74, preparing for a fall festival for children by stuffing goodie bags with whistles and pencils and plastic spiders and Dracula teeth, quietly said she voted for Trump and will do it again. “He says something, and he does it, and he doesn’t really care who it annoys,” Fluke explained.

Dori Brenenborg, though, steered clear of taking sides on Trump and instead zeroed in on what for her was top of mind.

“Health care,” she said.

Brenenborg, 73, is a retired insurance agent and now makes extra money with a sewing business on the side. She stood in the senior center’s entryway next to pamphlets about Medicare and hospitals and health fairs and about how to spot a con artist. Her three-month supply of eye drops used to be $200. Now it’s $700 for two months. “What can you cut?” Brenenborg said. “You can’t cut your utilities. You can’t cut your house payments.”

Many of her friends are struggling with the same thing.

“They’ll only take half a pill, or they’ll skip a day—that’s real common,” she said. “I’m fearful of where it’s going. Where does it stop?”

And at the video store, called The Video Store, a 38-year family business that now also sells lottery tickets, takes passport photos and offers faxing and notary services, Tardino shook her head about the president. “I feel he’s dangerous,” she said. “I said that from the beginning. He wasn’t prepared to be president.” But it’s not actually what she’s worried about the most. “My husband is not well,” she said.

John Tardino turned 65 this past summer. He and his wife and their three children always were self-insured. “Very expensive,” she said. When he signed up for Medicare, he picked the most affordable option, having been healthy his whole life. But the blood work from his first physical on Medicare showed moderate kidney failure. He signed up for a different Medicare plan that was pricier but had more comprehensive coverage. He was sent for an ultrasound. He was sent to a urologist. He was sent for X-rays and for more blood work. A doctor ruled out cancer. But his bladder remains inflamed. The Tardinos know their customers by name and commiserate with many of them about what’s going on in their lives, so they needed no reminder to be grateful for good health. “People,” Alice Tardino said, “come in here all the time, in wheelchairs, with health concerns.” But now it’s hitting home. They’re waiting on the results of more tests.

“You never know what’s going to happen,” she said.

“And stuff can happen to you just like that,” he said. “Even at the gym, the guys—we talk about who has to get a hip replacement, a knee replacement. One of my buddies had throat cancer.”

“This is a major, major concern of retirees,” she said.

Back at Levittown Lanes , as the evening activities of the women’s league wrapped up, Kaci Rickert turned her attention to her daughter. She’s 25, works as a groomer at PetSmart and last year lost her insurance when Rickert did. Now she’s on her mother’s new plan. But she’ll be on her own once she is older than 26. Rickert spoke of her daughter and her situation with a mother’s fierce pride—but also audible angst.

“She’s doing everything she can to make ends meet. She’s a damn good groomer, a very strong, independent woman,” she said. “But she just can’t afford to do health care, so she’s going to have to end up relying on the emergency room system.”

All over Levittown, Bucks County and Pennsylvania’s 1st District, many retirees, soon-to-be retirees, senior citizens and veterans are uneasy, they say, not even so much about themselves but about their children and their children’s children. Will Medicare still be there? Will costs keep climbing? How will their kids and their grandkids fare in the not too distant future if this president or any president or their representatives in Washington don’t manage to work together to find some way to address the persistent problems with health care?

“I think down the line about what will happen to my children with Medicare, and my grandchildren,” Miriam Schofield said. She’s had cancer, and her husband had a heart attack. As retirees, they’re on a fixed budget. Any increase in health care costs or decrease in availability—especially for people like them with pre-existing conditions—would be a burden almost impossible to handle. “I just worry how much prescriptions have went up, things like that, and hospital care,” Schofield said. And in the years to come? “Who knows down the road what will happen?”

Alice Tardino at The Video Store has two daughters and one son and four grandchildren. She thinks about their health care, and the Environmental Protection Agency, too. “I never really felt old until I saw what this administration is doing,” she said. “I worry about the future’s health because of the EPA regulations being relaxed. … I want the future generations to have the benefits that my children had, and the decisions that are being made now are definitely going to affect my grandchildren.”

Mike Episcopo at the Band Box couldn’t be more different in his support for Trump but shares Tardino’s broad concerns about the future.

“Politically,” he said, “I feel bad for the younger generation.” Student loans? “Off the charts—the next housing crisis, in my opinion,” he added. But health care tops the list.

“Those who are older obviously want to hold on to what they have. And then those who have kids on their health care plan worry about whether they’ll be protected until they’re 26,” said Pezza, the community college professor, who’s always discussing politics and public policy with people here. “They’re worried about whether they’re going to lose that.”

Rickert certainly is.  Her daughter and health insurance on her mind, she started packing up her stuff to head out into the dark night.

“How can she afford it,” Rickert asked, “if I can hardly afford it?”

One of the most bullied people in the world


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Earlier this week in an ABC interview by Tom Llamas.  Melania Trump explained how her experience being bullied led in part to her “Be Best” initiative.

“I could say that I’m the most bullied person in the world,”

 She corrected herself,  “One of them “If you really see what people are saying about me.”

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