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untitled-design-14He grabbed my ankles and began pulling me out of bed. He tightened his grip, and I realized it wasn’t my husband teasing me. I opened my eyes, and a large man in a navy blue suit and red tie with orange hair held my ankles and pulled me toward him. I tried to kick, and the grip tightened. I worked hard to force a scream so someone would hear me and come to my rescue. The scream began in my gut and rose up through my throat and finally out into the darkness of my bedroom and straight into my husband’s ear.

“Wake up, baby, wake up,” I heard my husband say. “Do you know where you are? Wake up.”

I finally realized that Donald Trump had not really been pulling on my ankles, but he’d been there in the fear of my psyche crowding my thoughts and feeding the frenzy of my worse nightmare for my country.

My blood-curdling scream woke up both my husband and me and kept us awake for a long time afterward. So much for peaceful weekend sleeping.

The reality of what is happening with the new president is worse than I ever imagined and worse than a nightmare. But unfortunately, this is a nightmare that doesn’t go away with the opening of my eyes. The relief from waking up from a terror dream is not abated, not now when every day brings one more horror and one more erosion of our democracy and republic.

Today, I have lost hope. Today, I feel the need to flee. Today, I cry for those most affected, and wish I could go back to the sleep-induced nightmare so I could kick my feet, scream my screams, and fight the demon in the room.

I will fight to become hopeful again, and I will do my part by continuing the phone calls, sending the postcards, and posting the reports. Please do the same.



President Trump and the Freedom of the Press

Good piece on the dangers of blocking the Fourth Estate and where it can lead under the current presidency if we aren’t vigilant.

Josep Goded

“Freedom of speech is a principal pillar of a free government; when this support is taken away, the constitution of a free society is dissolved, and tyranny is erected on its ruins. Republics…derive their strength and vigor from a popular examination into the action of the magistrates.”– Benjamin Franklin                     

Over the last two years, President Trump has maintained a brutal rhetoric full of hatred against the U.S. media. However, he had never crossed the red line until last Friday, when he decided to call the US media: “the real enemies of the American people.” This was rapidly perceived as an attempt to deepen the existing division and limit the freedom of the press in America. Despite the fact that President Trump had frequently attacked the media for years, it was the first time that he publicly usedbellicose rhetoric to…

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Something To Think About ~ #NotTheEnemy

By Hook Or By Book


Whether you live in the United States or not, you may have heard that this past Thursday Mr. Donald J. Trump gave what he called a “news conference.” It actually was a rather scary and demented 75 minute long performance in which he bragged about winning the election…AGAIN… and boasted how his administration is running like a “finely-tuned machine.” He then berated a reporter for a small Jewish magazine who had the nerve to respectfully ask him if there were any plans by his administration to help quell the rise of anti-semitism in the country, and then suggested that April Ryan, a long-time White House press reporter, set up a meeting between him and the Congressional Black Caucus, presumably because she’s African American. But he saved most of his vitriol for the press and their “fake news”, even at one point admitting that while it’s true there are leaks flooding…

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I’m not going to state the obvious about the quote from James Humes. You can draw your own conclusions. But I would like to point out two things that crowd my thoughts today. The first is an observation, and the second is just plain common sense born from my love of language and using it properly.

First, if a person must tell you all the time that they are smart and great and huge, then I suggest, they really aren’t any of those things at all. Two pieces by John Steinbeck resonate this truth.

“He said, “I am a man,” and that meant certain things to Juana. It meant that he was half insane and half god.”
John Steinbeck, The Pearl

Let me modify, this quote from one of my favorite novels. It means he “thinks” he’s “half god.”

“Perhaps the less we have, the more we are required to brag.”
John Steinbeck, East of Eden

Now to the common sense part of this post. What we say reveals our humanity, integrity, thoughtfulness, and intelligence. The man masquerading as the President of the United States shows none of these things. His vocabulary is limited–someone put a thesaurus on the teleprompters, please–to “very,” “huge,” “sad,” and “fake.”

And the way in which he uses the words makes no sense. The latest is his admission that he believes the media is “fake media.” There is no such thing as “fake” media. It either exists as a form of communication with the public or it does not. It can be dishonest media, abhorrent (he probably doesn’t know the meaning of this word) media, or persistent media. But the fact is, if it is putting out information, whether it’s false or against your beliefs, it is real, not fake.

It’s embarrassing to have this man speak in public or with his fingers on his phone. He will never be my president because he will never speak for me.





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Totalitarianism is a form of government where the state has total power, but in a democracy, the people of a country (or region) vote to elect leaders who act on their behalf. A totalitarianism government typically has a dictator that leads it, like Benito Mussolini in Italy during World War II.

So what happens when the people’s vote didn’t count or was unfairly influenced by partisan power tampering and outside forces, such as the authoritarian government of Russia?


Twenty-five days in, and my worst fears have come true about the new president. However, I imagined it would take much more time–perhaps twenty-five months, not days–to unravel.

Xenophobic acts, egocentric remarks, moronic tweets, horrible choices for cabinet members, non-democratic discourse, and actions verging on treason–these are but a few of the things we’re witnessing on an hourly basis from this chaotic administration.

When I originally started this blog, I hoped to write about the things I felt needed attention as a result of the order. But I am overwhelmed by the number of topics I would have to tackle. I simply don’t know where to begin.

I’m not alone. And perhaps that’s a part of the strategy. Wear the opposition down until they stop struggling under the weight of oppression.

Then again, maybe in another twenty-five days, this strategy will have turned inside on itself, and the checks and balances created by our founders will actually work. Then the national nightmare may be over.

I do wonder if everyone who voted for him still feels they did the right thing. I don’t mean the ramble from the rallies. I mean the ones who were swayed by the James Comey actions ten days before the election. I refer to the ones who were simply worn down by the continual leaks about the DNC and Hillary and their emails. Do they feel remorse now?

After writing some of this, I do know where to start. James Comey isn’t mentioned much these days, but we should not forget two crucial things. He knew about the president’s assistants association with Russian representatives during the campaign. Yet, he decided it was too explosive, too controversial, too partisan for him to go public with the information. Fast forward to ten days before the general election when Comey suddenly decides to come forward with the information about Anthony Weiner’s email account that may have had access to Hillary Clinton’s email server. He holds a press conference and announces an investigation. Ooops, he didn’t have enough information, which he announced two days before the election after absentee ballots and early voting had been cast. Too late. And far too partisan. Partisan doesn’t even describe it.

james-comeyHe should not be in charge of the FBI, and I believe, he should be charged with tampering with the Presidential Election of 2016.

That’s where we start.





The 2016 Presidential Election was tampered with and the wrong person is sitting in the hillaryOval Office right now. Imagine the work that could be taking place right now if we weren’t dealing with Nordstroms, fake news, alternate facts, clandestine meetings, and allowing Russia to laugh all the way to the bank of power and destruction.




I Cancelled My 2017 Travel Plans Due to the Executive Order

Alexis Chateau

In late 2016, I returned from a trip to Myrtle Beach with some exciting news.One of my clients was just about to launch an indie travel agency, and hired me to do their PR work in exchange for travel perks and shares in the company.

By January, I had put together the5 Travel Destinations on my 2017 List.That post became – and still is – my most popular for 2017.

Through the post, I’ve received priceless advice from locals and fellow travelers, and heard your stories of where you’ve been and where your 2017 travel plans will take you.

Executive Orders

Then, just one week after my post was published, the U.S. President issued an executive order on immigration, which banned the entry and re-entry of immigrants from all over the world.

Ever the vigilant ones, my family and I had a brief five minute meeting; at the…

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You voted for Trump because

LibDem Fischer

Post from my dear facebook friend Alan:

You voted for Trump because Clinton was going to be in Wall Street’s pocket. Trump wants to repeal Dodd-Frank and eliminate the Fiduciary Rule, letting Wall Street return to its pre-2008 ways.

You voted for Trump because of Clinton’s emails. The Trump administration is running its own private email server.

You voted for Trump because you thought the Clinton Foundation was “pay for play.” Trump has refused to wall off his businesses from his administration, and personally profits from payments from foreign governments.

You voted for Trump because of Clinton’s role in Benghazi. Trump ordered the Yemen raid without adequate intel, and tweeted about “FAKE NEWS” while Americans died as a result of his carelessness.

You voted for Trump because Clinton didn’t care about “the little guy.” Trump’s cabinet is full of billionaires, and he took away your health insurance so he…

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Writing and Politics: I write because I care

Perspective from a fellow author.


I think we’re all aware that these are very dynamic if not outright volatile times in Image result for politicspolitics and that we’re deeply divided into camps. People feel the need to speak out and – whether well informed and polite or raging and ignorant – discussions often seem to reach an impasse.

I’ve been rightfully told I might lose readers over voicing political opinions. Yet, I wonder if that’s important at all. I believe that what some people call my political colouring (whatever that is), that colouring will find itself in my writing one way or another. How you portray the poor or the rich, the privileged and the disadvantaged, how you show human conflict and dilemmas – all that gives your attitude towards others and society in general away.

I don’t consider myself right or left necessarily. Image result for politicsYou wouldn’t find me in an anarchist bar, nor at a neo-Nazi rally. I side with evidence…

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The Audacity of Hope

LibDem Fischer

The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream | [Barack Obama]As his presidency draws to a close it’s heartbreaking to hear this great and classy man speak about his hopes and ideals,  knowing that a certain bulldozer is going to trumple all over what this honourable man has achieved.
But there never has been a better time to listen to this
informative, insightful and inspiring book.
Obama reminds us of the greatness we have in ourselves, takes position for a better version of ourselves, encourages us to look at the bigger picture and do what’s right.
In face of the backset for humanitarian and liberal values in recent elections, in face of adversity and difficult times ahead, it is comforting to listen to someone rational and sensible.
I found the man and this book utterly inspiring. It takes audacity to hope but it is worth it. Without hope, what can there be?


In July 2004, Barack Obama electrified the Democratic…

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statute-of-liberty-cryingMy grandfather, Edwin Stephens, came from Cornwall to the United States in 1900. Here’s an excerpt from his autobiography that shows how the arrival in New York symbolized so much for a young man of twenty-one who yearned to start a new life full of promise. Our new president doesn’t care or doesn’t realize what he destroyed with one grandstanding sweep of his pretty little pen. He demolished hope.

And, yes, I’m proud to be the granddaughter of an immigrant to the United States. Not only is  Lady Liberty crying today, my grandfather must be looking down upon this debacle and weeping.

From the “Autobiography” of my grandfather, Edwin Stephens (1876-1943)

Ancestry and Parentage

A scion of old Cornish, Celtic stock,

Whose forebears roamed at large on Britain’s isles

Ere Norseman found their rugged wave-lapped shore

Or Danish hordes invaded them for spoil;

Where Druid devotees made offerings

Of human sacrifice to idol gods.

Breaking Home Ties

On March 21st in 1900

I left the shores of England all alone

With ambitions for my future life,

And youthful dreams that set my heart aflame.

Nine days of stormy voyage on the sea

Cooled not my zeal nor quenched that burning flame.

What tho’ the old Majestic rolled and tossed

Or sometimes lay submerged beneath the waves

Her captain’s long experience made us feel

That he could ride the wildest waves

And bring his ship into her destined port

With all her precious freight of human lives.

And so it was:  Ere day had yet appeared

The lights of New York harbor came to view,

And when day had dawned, with eye transfixed

We gazed upon a noble towering shaft—

Statue of Liberty, ah there it boldly stood

Bidding us welcome to her free and happy shores

And likewise all who came with purpose firm

To give obedience to her just and righteous laws.