As if, Christmas shopping starting to invade the Halloween aisle wasn't bad enough, now the whole "Black Friday" (not a holiday created by Obama, for the TeaBaggers out there) has turned into "Unthankfully Black Thursday" in most of the shopping world.
WalMart, besides being a burden of $250,000 average per store on the American people, who are being forced to supply a safety net to the employees of the company owned by a handful of Waltons (not a John Boy in sight, in this bunch), who share 42% of the total US wealth among them. WalMart has made a career of selling stuff cheap and playing cheap to its mainline employees. So much so, that a WalMart store that has employees donating to other employees to help keep them from being hungry as the holidays approach.
But enough of WalMart, the ugliest of the necesary evils of living in a society that has gone topsy turvy in the balance of wealth and corrpution.
Many other stores have started to follow WalMart, and are planning to help their employees avoid the pains of an unhappy Thanksiving table at home, by making them work and avoid turkey and all the trimmings all together.
For what? An extra day of selling for Christmas - a holiday filled by lots of people who will do without this year in this land of plenty (for some, but none for you!).
And what's funny (though not worth a laugh) is how most of the people who are working hard to help those in need are people who are a pay-check and a single disaster away from being in need themselves. Perhaps they can actually feel the pain and suffering more because of how unbelievably close to it they themselves are.
Look no further than the WalMart associates who are taking donations for one another.
My household, by no means, is raking in massive piles of cash. Between 3 kids, debts, and the rising cost of living, the two working parent home is slowing giving way to the two parents working two jobs and hustling on the side standard of living to make it to the bottom rung of the rickety, frayed rope ladder of the middle class, whilst a greedy fatass stands high above with a big knife trying to sever the ladder from the side of the cliff that he has staked out as his mansion on the hill.
In spite of not being in a place to take on the problems of the world, we are still trying to help. Last week, all 5 members of the household took a list from a child in need in the community, and began to fill it. Toys, clothes, a bike and a lot of humbling conversations with the children later, I feel proud to know that a six year old kid will not be left without at Christmas - which, thanks to "Unthankfully Black Thursday" and "Black Friday" and the whole bastardized approach to what it takes to make a holiday that we have in this country, would have happened.
But what about December 26? What about the other 364 days in the year?
A temporary fix to ease our consciences is nothing more than temporary. The problems go on, and the people tasked with fixing them have been co-opted by that fat cat atop the ledge trying to sever the rest of our abilities to climb any higher. Nevermind those who are at the bottom of the cliff and unable to even reach up toward the ladder. No hope of climbing out. The least among us.
You would think, that all of the Fox "news" complaining about the anti-Christian movement against Christmas, would be out there rining the bells the loudest each and every year to try and stop the overt commercialism of the holidays, and bring it back to a more ... well, Christian approach. But sadly, Santa Claus is actually a far better symbol of what they represent: An over-fed, old white dude, who has all the toys and systematically decides who can have some and who will go without.
So, maybe we should all re-think things this holiday season. Will we? Probably not as much as we should. Myself included. But we should, perhaps, at least try.
I just got off the phone with Tate McQueen, who is in Washington, DC today meeting with - among other people - Rep Mark Meadows (of shutdown fame).
After the broadcast, this past Monday, of Mike Mason's Buried Secrets documentary about the CTS contamination site and the EPA's possbile cover up of facts and information that led to health problems and deaths of folks in South Asheville over the past few decades, Tate McQueen and others went to DC to bring the story right to the source.
Tate felt like it was productive, but encourages everyone to call Reps Meadows and McHenry in the DC offices, to help them find the courage to keep pushing forward on this story.
Here are the phone numbers, if you should feel so inclined (and I encourage everyone to call and express their views.):
Mark Meadows: (202) 225 6401
Patrick McHenry: (202) 225 2576
Not long after Billy Graham celebrated his 95th birhtday at Grove Park Inn with the likes of Sarah Palin, Glenn Beck and Donald Trump, he was hospitalized. No direct connection could be made, but Trump was sitting next to Billy at dinner that night.
The good news is that Graham was released from the hospital yesterday, given a clean bill of health. Well, as clean as a 95 year old man could get. "You're perfectly healthy. You may only have a few years to live."
No word on what caused his quick recovery, but Some Say (the famed Fox "news" source) that Franklin Graham approached his father with paperwork that would give full control on the ministries to Franklin.
Upon the son offering the elder Graham a pen to sign things over, Billy sta bolt up right an exclaimed, "Praise Jesus, I am healed!"