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Top 5 causes of homelessness

- Lack of affordable housing

- Lack of a livable wage

- Medical issues/lack of accessible health care

- Domestic violence

- Mental illness

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Hundreds of Oregon Corporations Escape the Minimum Tax

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Half of the US Is Broke

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The myth of the Christian country

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“The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.”

FDR, 2nd Inaugural Address, Jan 20, 1937

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A Just Peace

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SIP contract online

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Oreaviationwatch

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Middle East friendship chart

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Corporations enriching shareholders

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- Intel tax abatements

- INTEL, come clean!

- Leashing INTEL  

- Free to Be Hungry

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Facts not fiction on universal gun background checks

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"Injustice anywhere is injustice everywhere"

Letter from Birmingham Jail, April 16, 1963

Martin Luther King, Jr.

The GOP - Not One of US.

Wall Street, our new criminal class...       

   Business in the USA is sitting on $2 trillion dollars refusing to invest their own funds in expanding and hiring workers.  

   When one adds to this the reserves that banks, equity firms and hedge funds have - the picture is clear - "capitalism in the USA is on strike." 

   The engine of our economy - the spirit of entrepreneurship is not in evidence today.  So much for business being dynamic and risk taking. 

   They hire K- Street lobbyists and their ilk at the state level because they are averse to risk taking - pleading for tax breaks, tax credits and endless loopholes. 

   The "business of business" in America today is not about job creation, it's about wealth hoarding and redistribution from the middle class to the top 1%. 

   So for those who claim government doesn't create jobs, my response is that business doesn't either until given "corporate welfare" by government.  The fact is that the private and public sector are highly integrated, something the anti-tax, anti-government Tea Party types don't understand. 

   Job creation requires public/private partnerships but the benefits of such collaboration should go to the 99% not just the 1%.  

 

RAD'S

WEBSITE PICKS: 


 

  • An Independent View

Oregon Outpost

  • A Middle East View      

Rami G. Khouri

  • RealClearPolitics:

Realclearpolitics

  • Jim Hightower:   

Jimhightower.com

  • Robert Reich:

Robert Reich

  • Thomas Friedman: 

Friedman Column

  • Nicholas Kristof: 

Kristof Column

Oregon's Motto: 

She flies with her own wings! 


Hard Times in Oregon: 

Hardtimes

The Oregon story - the rich get richer, the poor and middle class lose ground.  Check this front page Oregonian article out. 

Oregon wage gap widens

Homelessness in Oregon - a call to action

Chuck Currie The crisis of homelessness


  

      Oregon's coming 34th out of 41 states in the Obama "Race to the Top" illustrates the failure of leadership from Governor Kitzhaber and his predecessors as they have built an educational bridge to nowhere called high stakes testing.

   Instead of being in a race to the top we seem to be dumpster diving to the bottom despite doing education reform since 1991.  Insanity is termed doing the same thing over and over again.  When can we put a fork in this stupidity? 

   To confuse matters more the Oregonian's editorial board has pontificated that this was a lost opportunity to get federal funding for innovation.  How firing principals and teachers equals innovation is a mystery to me.   

   The way to reform schools is to reduce class sizes, to encourage teacher collaboration and to support their continued education.  High stakes testing and performance based assessment of teachers are NOT the answer!    

   If you want students to succeed you first have to resolve the issues they confront before they come to school.  Children who face poverty, hunger, homelessness, health care issues and family instability require wrap around services for them and their families, 24/7.   

   Every child needs a safe home of their own and parents who know how to be good parents.   

There is only one way to address this impending crisis.  Schools must have a stable source of funding. Until that happens - we will limp from crisis to crisis.   

 

 

    

    Why does the richest nation in the world have the moral blight of homeless people?

Invisible People

http://www.npr.org


 Homelessness

    Connecting the dots between homelessness, hunger & health care disparities in Oregon and Washington County: 

Homelessness:  

•    The faces of the homeless are families with children, single men and women, vets, and many who are impaired. It is estimated that in Washington County up to 56% of homelessness occurs to families.

Hunger:

•    Hunger is highest among single mother households (10%) and poor families (15%) as well as renters, unemployed workers and minority households. 

Heath Care Disparities: 

•    Adults in Oregon without insurance represent 22.3% of the state’s population compared to 19.7% of the nation.  In Washington County approximately 


A RAD rhetorical question - Were Madison & Marx "Marxists"?  

 

"History records that the money changers have used every form of abuse, intrigue, deceit, and violent means possible to maintain their control over governments."   

- James Madison

 

"Philosophers have only interpreted the world in different ways. The point is, however, to change it. 

- Karl Marx

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

RAD Lines

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Putting corporate Oregon ahead of our people

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#1445: Tommy, Riposa in Pace

requiescat in pace

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"There are men who believe that democracy... is limited or measured by a kind of mystical and artificial fate [and that] tyranny and slavery have become the surging wave of the future..." 

FDR, 3rd Inaugural Address, Jan 20, 1941

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Obamacare is working in Oregon!

Oregon's uninsurance rate cut more than half following federal health reforms

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Mourning for a Judaism Being Murdered by Israel

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Taking on the Pro-Israel Lobby 

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Sign the petition ►

Walgreens - pay your fair share of taxes!

"Let me issue and control a nation's money and I care not who writes the laws." - Mayer Amschel Rothschild

Miguel de Cervantes, from The Duke - "I accuse you of being an idealist, a bad poet and an honest man."  Cervantes' response - "Guilty as charged, I have never had the courage to believe in nothing."   from Man of La Mancha  

Intel failed to report fluoride emissions for almost 30 years   

     Why do Intel employees who are house hunting in Hillsboro, Aloha or Beaverton refer to an area within a 5 mile radius of Intel plants as "the dead zone?"  

      Do they know something we don't?  QuestionIntel.com  We couldn't trust banks "too big to fail," so why should we trust Intel?

Professor Kingfield, from the Paper Chase

   "I'm not a teacher: only a fellow traveler of whom you asked the way. I pointed ahead – ahead of myself as well as you." 

- George Bernard Shaw

 

BLOGS:

From the Left Wing:

Paul Krugman

Paul Krugman - The New York Times

Democracy Now
democracynow.org

The Daily Kos

dailykos.com

Blue Oregon

blueoregon.com

 

"Children are made readers on the laps of their parents." 

- Emilie Buchwald 

 


    "Although we may never know with complete certainty the identity of the winner of this year’s Presidential election, the identity of the loser is perfectly clear. It is the Nation’s confidence in the judge as an impartial guardian of the rule of law." 

- Justice John Paul Stevens, Bush v. Gore, 2001


    The state of our union - check out the map, it's a reality check for those who can't figure out why people are so ticked off... 

americanobserver

    Here's Garrison Keillor's rap on the rightwingnuts:   

GarrisonKeillor

 

     Garrison Keillor - "...The Founding Fathers intended the Senate to be a fount of wisdom... but when you consider...  moon-faced Mitch McConnell, your faith in democracy is challenged severely. Any legislative body in which 41 senators from rural states that together represent 10 percent of the population can filibuster you to death is going to be flat-footed, on the verge of paralysis, no matter what. Any time 10 percent of the people can stop 90 percent, it's like driving a bus with a brake pedal for each passenger. That's why Congress has a public approval rating of [11] percent...." 


"Great is the guilt of an unnecessary war"

- John Adams

 

"Loyalty to country always.  Loyalty to government when it deserves it."  

- Mark Twain  

 

“Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.”  

- George Santayana 

 

"The love of one's country is a natural thing.  But why should love stop at the border?" 

- Pablo Casals

 

"Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold; mere anarchy is loosed upon the world, the blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere the ceremony of innocence is drowned; the best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity." 

- William Butler Yeats  

 

"You see things; and you say, 'Why?'

But I dream things that never were; and I say, "Why not?" 

- George Bernard Shaw, "Back to Methuselah" (1921)

 

"...the most common and durable source of factions has been the various and unequal distribution of property. Those who hold and those who are without property have ever formed distinct interests in society...  The regulation of these various and interfering interests forms the principal task of modern legislation, and involves the spirit of party and faction in the necessary and ordinary operations of the government..."

- James Madison, Federalist Papers #11


"Why … should we have government? Why not each individual take to himself the whole fruit of his labor, without having any of it taxed away?”  

The legitimate object of government, is to do for the people whatever they need to have done, but which they can not do, at all, or can not do, so well, for themselves – in their separate and individual capacities … There are many such things … roads, bridges and the like; providing for the helpless young and afflicted; common schools … the criminal and civil [justice] departments."

- Abraham Lincoln

 

Taxes are the price we pay for a civilized society

- Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

 

"Parliament is not a congress of ambassadors from different and hostile interests, which interests each must maintain, as an agent and advocate, against other agents and advocates, but Parliament is a deliberative assembly of one nation, with one interest, that of the whole..."

- Edmund Burke 

 

“It is a maxim among these lawyers that whatever hath been done before may legally be done again, and therefore they take special care to record all the decisions formerly made against common justice and the general reason of mankind.  These, under the name of precedents, they produce as authorities, to justify the most iniquitous opinions.”

- Jonathan Swift

 

" Every satirist who drew breath has flung pots of ink at this parade of tooting lummoxes and here it is come round again, marching down Main Street, rallying to the cause of William McKinley, hail, hail, the gang’s all here, ta-ra-ra-boom-de-ay."

- Garrison Keillor


 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 


 

 

  

 


  

 

Friday
Aug282015

WHOM CAN YOU TRUST?  

     EDITOR’S NOTE:  At some point it's all about whom one trusts.  I've supported Obama's fast track legislation and the Trans-Pacific trade deal on the premise that free trade is a net good and economic protectionism is a net bad idea. 

     But as they say the "devil is in the details." 

     Here's two opinion pieces that lay out the case against the Trans-Pacific Trade Pact by Paul Krugman & Jim Hightower...   


Source:  The Lowdown

Paul Krugman: Trade and Trust

     All the bad arguments for the Trans-Pacific Partnership suggest that it isn’t a deal we should support.

Hightower lowdown.org 

     Talking points against the Trans-Pacific Trade deal...  

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     PS:  Whether we like it, we live in a geo-political global village.  Creating fair trade rules seems like a reasonable deal for all parties – in the developed and developing world.  But giving the keys to the kingdom to multi-national corporations isn’t progress but yielding power to those entities that have plundered the earth and exploited labor all over the world. 

     But yielding trust to organized labor and to environmental groups is not a panacea either.  American unions, like their counterparts in the developed world have their own self-interests at heart that is not necessarily the interests of those they claim to represent.  And enviros as self-appointed paragons of virtue seem equally suspect to me. 

     Global corporations want an unfettered right to rape, ravage and pillage the earth and its people for profit.  American unions and enviros want to tilt the balance to US workers or lock up western forests.  In the latter case the results are forest fires across the West that add to global warming.     

     But the political process Jim Hightower describes gives one hope that a balance can be struck between the interests of the 'corporates' and the 'unionists' if the formula of John Kenneth Galbraith is embraced – countervailing powers – which can check mate each other in the marketplace and in the global political arena. 

     The question is can we move this discussion from a black and white talking points to shades of grey?   In a presidential year this is problematic at best. 

     We can’t turn the clock back to the 19th century.  But allowing corporations to use claims of “proprietary interest” as a smoke screen for a trade pact with secret deals built into it is not progress but the same old shell game the 1% uses to leverage their weath and to increase their unchecked power. 

     In Oregon the claim of proprietary interests denys the public access to how much, if any, state income taxes bullies like Intel and Nike pay!  But they don't mind disclosing the net income taxes their employees pay to Oregon!  Now you know why our transparency bill was killed in committee last session... 

     As the saying goes – “trust but verify" and while we're at it "read the fine print."  

Tuesday
Aug252015

THE WAGES OF GEO-POLITICAL SIN

Europe’s Immigration Problem: 

     The influx of refugees from the Middle East and Africa into Europe via Turkey, Greece and Italy, among other points of entry is the most recent legacy of European colonialism which carved up the Middle East and Africa into ungovernable fiefdoms upon their independence from their colonial masters in the 1950s and 60s. 

     The shame of European history is now being played out again by the ineptness of the Euros to develop a coherent and humane way to grant these refugees a sanctuary as they flee political repression from their own despotic leaders or homegrown jihadists – ISIS et al. It reminds one of the refusal to grant Jews asylum from the Third Reich. 

     The US is not immune from criticism.  But our ability to grudgingly integrate refugees from Latin American repression who flee across our own border at least recognizes the problem.  In the Euro case they seem in denial more than humane.  Both the Euros and the US must do better.  

     We reached out to the boat people from Vietnam and Cambodie after the collapse of Saigon - how can we do less for the new boat people?  

China and the Market: 

     The Black Monday experience illustrates a combination of factors, which has led to a plummeting market.  First, speculators clearly have inflated the market and this may be just a market correction.  Then again, if the chaos of the markets is because of China’s imploding the economic issues may be deeper than a mid-course correction. 

     But what this really indicates is that putting our eggs in the China basket has been a Faustian bargain.  Instead of going into exotic markets we should be reinventing in the USA and the American middle class to insulate our economy from such turbulence.  This would involve a public/private reinvestment "in America" strategy. 

     Banks too big to fail and corporations too greedy to pay their fair share of federal, state and local taxes are the soft underbelly of why America’s consumer dominated economy of the post WW II era no longer exists to insulate us against our foreign economic misadventures.  It’s past time to reinvest in America! 

     What, if any, candidate for the presidency is articulating this position? 

     What party is likely to support a reinvest in America policy?  President Obama has been trying to move Congress in this direction throughout his presidency only to find the GOP as the party of NO to the American middle class.  So the upcoming presidential and congressional elections is another chance to send a message!  

Monday
Aug242015

THE DONALD - AN AMERICAN MUSSOLINI?  

Public Enemy #1 - Il Duce, Al Capone or The Donald? 


     My "Pennsylvania Connection" sent me this NYTimes analysis of The Donald.  I think it's worth sharing with those who are scratching their heads trying to figure out why this master of bombast is leading the GOP parade down the Yellow Brick Road. Remember that road led Alice and her friends to the pinnacle of power - only to find the Wizard behind the drapes was a fake... 

     Like Oz, The Donald is equally a fake or the illusionist in whom his fans put their hopes, fears and anger into his image as if that was a solution to what bothers them about American politics.  But alas he has no answers - as his response in the TV clip in the article below indicates when asked about his ideas beyond immigration - he simply walked off the stage leaving the young fellow in the dust.

     The Donald is all about him - he's creating a cult of personality not an ideology.  He's a vacuous self-promoting snake oil huckster out of the annals of Sinclair Lewis and F. Scott Fitzgerald.     

     The Donald has got on with a diminishing and dying demographic - older white voters who are angry and clearly very unPC-like.  Trump is a 21st century version of a fairly typical American politician who promises Americans like the Italian dictator Benito Mussoluni to run the trains on time.  Instead Benito ran Italy into an alliance with Hitler's Germany and into the ditch of WW II.

     The Donald is reminiscent of American neo-fascists such as Charles Limburg, Huey Long, Father Coughlin, Strom Thurmond, Robert Welch - who played on American fears of the time, hate of the other and legitimate grievances against the economic and political establishment.  Ironically, Trump is a member of the 1% who is running against the 1% which is why he is reviled by the GOP establishment.  

     Will he wear out his welcome down the road - probably.  But Trump is tapping into a deep vein in the American psyche.  But it's a narrow fissure mostly within the Republican Party and a diminishing demographic in the American body politic where according to an NPR report today shows immigration to the US coming from a variety of sources - Latin America (50%), Asia (30%) and Europe (10%). 

     Again, the math is against the GOP - the party of the White voter with some "wisened aliens" as Garrison Keiilor puts it.  With 53% of the electorate being women how will Trump's anti-woman rhetoric play in November of 2016?  And similarly how will his anti-immigrant rhetoric play with the Black vote, the Latino vote and the Asian vote?  I think we know.  Trump if he gets the nomination - will sink the GOP ship.

     So bring it on Donald...   Like the Titanic he will hit an iceberg in his journey down the yellow brick road cast as "Wicked or the Beast of the East" and come up short...   But the entertainment value will be great TV and Roger Ailes and Fox News will get what they richly deserve - a big slab of humble pie in their fat faces.  They created The Donald, now their creation will ruin their fun! 

Sunday
Aug232015

WHERE WE LIVE...  

     EDITOR'S NOTE:  This info below illustrates how the federal tax structure favors the rich over the middle class and the working poor.      

      Aug 21, 2015 · Urban Institute. The blue bars show the value of these tax breaks for different income brackets. They can be compared with subsidies the federal government. 

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     Interesting article but the conclusion is dubious at best –

     "More broadly, the fact that many people don't like too much crowding is precisely why we don't need to worry too much about prescriptive residential land use rules. There is no reason to build a dense parcel unless someone wants to rent or buy it."  

     Does this mean we should scrap Oregon's land use laws?  I hope not! 

     Density means different things to different people.  In the east coast including small towns, like Carlisle, PA where I began my teaching career in '69 houses built as long ago as the 18th century were built close to each other, some sharing an exterior wall with small yards in the back. 

     These homes were renovated over the years.  We lived in two such homes as renters owned by colleagues on sabbaticals - one built in the 1700s and the other built @ the Civil War era.

     This town house conception was the norm, as in high tone areas like DC's Georgetown...   

     Density further west means a front and back yard with a garage.  We never had one in PA but parked on the street like everyone did.  So a lot of this is cultural and historical - which is why land use is valuable.  

     But then again when I look at homes in Aloha, Hillsboro and new developments like Bethany - the homes are jammed up next to each other like they would be in the east...  

     So I think with an influx of 200,000 plus residents coming into the Metro area over the next 10 years housing will have to be vertical, built on smaller lots, be mixed use (which is why IZ is necessary) and why the concept of large lot development is simply outdated - there is no room...

     Additionally, insisting on building homes in rural areas given the fires we are increasingly seeing is a model of the past.  The days of the Wild West are over!    

     We live in a typical single family home in the Grove on a 1/2 acre, 1500 square feet - tract home, single story - probably a thing of the past...    

     One final thought - the reason we have a housing shortage for people under 50% MFI is simply that the feds got out of the business of building affordable housing in the Reagan years. Until that changes, nothing will change...   The market simply won't do the job!  

     Look at South Waterfront - all condos for the rich often absentee owners who are buying to flip them - often foreigners from China, Russia et al. That's the demographic.  If one is an upwardly mobile person in China or Russia what better investment is there than a condo in the USA?   

     So the question is not subsidizing but who is subsidized?  This is a policy question not a market question... 

 

 

Saturday
Aug222015

HILLARY'S E-MAIL AGONY?  

EDITOR'S NOTE:  A friend of mine who lives in Pennsylvania is trying to figure out why he's out of sync with many Amerians especially those on the Right...   


by Marc V.       

     I’ve been struggling, albeit with some bemusement, for the past several months, trying to get myself outraged and all worked up over Hillary’s emails and server.  After all, it seems a large majority of American’s seem to be terribly upset and concerned that somehow, all of the nations most top-secret information was secretly housed on a private server in a private home in Chappaqua, New York.

     All the Republican candidates seem to be outraged by this seeming lack of security for our nation’s top secrets. Mr. Trump thinks she ought to be in jail.  Two congressional committees continue to spend tens of millions investigating what all was actually on that server, and in those emails, or, God forbid, which ones did she delete and scrub clean before she turned them over to the government. 

     And it now seems that a significant majority of my fellow citizens know, with certainty, that there MUST BE something she’s hiding, or why else wouldn’t she use the secure, confidential, unassailably safe government servers and email eddy’s of the State Department?

     So, in my confusion about why I can’t seem to get upset about this, I did what I usually do in these confused situations:  I turned to my 3 most trusted Facebook friends for some thoughtful insight.

     Ching Chang Chong from the Peoples Republic of China; Hamid Habibe Hediddle from the Islamic Republic of Iran, and Boris Valarie Trumpinsky from the Russian Federation.  I have come to know all three to be thoughtful, neutral, and insightful observers of American politics.

     I was certain that each of my friends would offer me sound and solid analysis about why my blood should be boiling over Hillary’s emails.

     My first message went to Ching. Ching, I asked: Why is it that so many of my compatriots, and all of the Republican presidential candidates, are angry and indignant about Mrs. Clintons use of a private email account, and a personal server, while she was Secretary of State, yet I can’t seem to get upset?  Can you help me?

     Within an hour, I had an answer from Ching.  “You...be upset?  Why?  Why should you be upset?  My government didn’t even know she HAD a personal email, let alone her own server in Chappaqua.  We had to READ about it in the Wall Street Journal, YEARS after she had left the State Department.  WE are the ones that are upset.”

     Confused and bewildered by his answer, my next message went to Hamid.  “Hamid my friend, have you been watching the American press and reading about all the anger over Mrs. Clintons use of a private email address and her own personal server?  Somehow, I don’t seem to be worried or angered by this circumstance.  Can you tell me the obvious facts that I am missing?”  I was certain that Hamid would enlighten me.

     Within 30 minutes, my Facebook messenger was dinging.  “My dear, non-Islamic, friend, this is almost as silly a question as those in your country who ask why it is that BOTH the Islamic Republic of Iran, and the Devil United States, want to eliminate ISIS.  It is self-evident.  You are not upset because there is absolutely no logical reason for you to BE upset.  Did you know that when my most beloved and revered Supreme Leader learned of this fact from a re-tweet of the Drudge Report, he ordered the death of our top 20 intelligence officers?  He couldn’t even find Chappaqua on a Google map!”

     My mind was now spinning.  My friend Ching is upset.  My friend Hamid is upset.  And yet they are telling me, I’m ok??

     As I was pondering how to frame the correct question to my friend Boris Trumpinsky, my Facebook messenger again started dinging.  Ah hah, I thought, one of my friends has further thoughts and will now enlighten me. 

     I immediately opened my messenger, and was stunned to see the following message from my friend Boris.

     “My dear friend and comrade Marc.  Only a few minutes ago I received a tweet from my friend Nam Dong Kwang of the DPRK, indicating that you are asking questions regarding Mrs. Clinton’s use of a private email and server, and you are wondering why so many of your compatriots seem outraged, yet you do not.  Do you know how many billions of rubles President Putin had to give to our KGB so that they could hack into Leon Panetta’s two computers to discover why they were never able to intercept any of Secretary Clinton’s communications??  Billions and billions.  It was OUTRAGEOUS!!!”

     I read his message again and again.  I sat in silence.  I didn’t even know Boris had a friend named Nam Dong Kwang from the DPRK.  Geezzz...what IS the DPRK?

     What AM I missing???

     And then, in a flash, it hit me. 

     The only U.S. government emails and the only quasi-governmental server, that haven’t been hacked in the past 7 years are the ones nobody knew about, located in Chappaqua, New York.

     Now I can rest easy!  Problem solved!