Cleveland Corruption – R U Sorry Yet 4 Not Voting?

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I live in a suburb of Cleveland, Ohio. Cleveland has always been high on the list for stand-up comics, television series, movies, newspapers, cartoonists, authors, weathermen, musicians, and yes, even athletes, to take potshots at. Most of it has been very good natured and done with love for the simple reason that so many in the entertainment field and publishing world grew up here. Some of the put-downs have been not so loving, such as the comments LeBron James made about Cleveland when he decided to abandon the team, fans, and city who have done so much for him while asking so little. And then some of the attention has been due to situations involving the environment, crime, or politics where we have essentially shot ourselves in the foot. Of course, we’re not the only city in the U.S. that has had their share of environmental disasters, infamous crime sprees, or political corruption – nor is Cleveland necessarily the worst of those cities. But the story that’s been rocking the headlines this week is a real doozy in that just about every single major local politician, several judges, well-known attorneys, labor union leaders, and numerous contractors have been served (or are about to be served) with Federal indictments for serious charges ranging from bribery, accepting bribes, “selling” verdicts, embezzlement, abuse of office, and on and on. Yesterday, the FBI made a great show of leading the County Commissioner, Jimmy Dimora, out of his house not merely in handcuffs, but in chains, just in time for the local news.

Make no mistake, I find morally abhorrent all corrupt practices by anyone who has been elected or appointed to a public office or by an attorney or judge who have taken an oath to honor the law and our legal system. Such persons sit in a fiduciary position which means that they have a sworn duty to serve ALL of their constituents with an even hand and are personally responsible for the harm they’ve caused to the people as a result of any breach of their fiduciary duty. By law, they are required to be held to a “higher standard” than us civilians: meaning that they are required to be able to genuinely hold themselves up as honorable and moral role models, both in deed and in perception. I feel no compassion for those who choose to ignore such duty and who instead use their positions for their own personal gain, be it for power, financial benefits, sexual favors, or jobs for their deadbeat relatives just to keep their spouse happy. Public humiliation, such as the spectacle of a “Perp Parade”, should be de riguer for any and all persons who have arrogantly abused their publicly held positions of trust. Why? It is not as if such humiliation would serve as a deterrent or cause such people to suddenly get a flash of insight about the harm they have caused to others, as those who indulge in such activities are at the very least, sociopaths, who are incapable of seeing beyond their own nose. The real point of public humiliation is that it allows the start of the healing process for the victims of those narcissitic, scheming ingrates in whom we had placed our trust, our city, our schools, our jobs, our homes, our quality of life, and our regional pride.

I am grateful that the Feds did not succomb to the “politics as usual” which would have deferred the indictments until after November’s election. Not so amazing is the fact that the names of many of those indicted are likely to still be on the ballots, due to time and cost restraints and due to the fact that it is too late for any “replacements” from the same party to throw their hat in the ring. While I believe there are some excellent people up for election, many are newcomers who don’t have established name recognition. It will be interesting to see how the registered voters here handle this election. Will anyone vote for the now disqualified encumbants? Will they choose to vote for alternatives that they’ve read up on and feel good about casting their votes for? How many will indiscriminately vote for anyone and everyone but the dishonored old-guard? Or will most of our citizens stay home, leaving the fate of our city to “someone else”, as they did in the September primaries when the turn out was 16.48% (only 160,00 out of 960,000 registered voters) ?

Whether you live in Cleveland, Ohio; Broward County, Florida; Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania; or anywhere else in the United States, take this year’s election as an opportunity to take back control of our country, states, and cities by voting for candidates that you would not hesitate to trust with your live and your children’s lives, as that is ultimately what is at stake. If you leave it to chance by either choosing not to vote or by voting by faces, names or parties rather than by thoughtful consideration, then forever hold your tongue with complaints about taxes, school, jobs, health care, and the economy. The right to complain (as well as the right to help determine how our laws are applied and how our government’s run) comes at a price. That price is to be a responsible voter not only every 4 years, but in every election.

Tirade and Lecture Over. 😉 Thanks for bearing with me.

Tonight’s freebies are from my archive of original Art Deco inspired designs which I’ve never displayed before. Enjoy!

But first…

NEW FEATURE: BACKGROUND LINKS

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Rejection As A Prognosticator for Success

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Some Interesting Facts:

  1. “The Salon des Paris”, sponsored by the French government since 1673, was considered the most esteemed artistic competition in Paris and one of the greatest spectacles in Europe. Works rejected by the selection committee got marked with a big red “R” on the back of the canvas.
  2. In 1863, the Paris Salon, called “The Exhibition of Living Artists” averaged 23,000 visitors a day (400,000 total at 10 francs a pop).
  3. That same year (and again in 1864), due to pressure from the artists and the public, the Emperor Napoleon III permitted a second exhibition, the “Salon des Refusés”, to take place simultaneously right next to the Salon, to showcase the artists whose work had been rejected by the Paris Salon. A total of only 3,500 people attended the Salon des Refusés, despite the bargain ticket price of 1 franc.
  4. Amongst the artists displaying at the Salon des Refusés in 1863 and 1864, were Édouard Manet, Edgar Dégas, Claude Monet, Camille Pissarro, Paul Cézanne, and the American painter, James McNeill Whistler.
  5. In 1878, Alphonse Mucha’s application to the Prague Academy of Fine Arts was rejected, with the following recommendation: “Find yourself another profession where you’ll be more useful”.
  6. Vincent Van Gogh sold only one painting, “Red Vineyard at Arles”, during his lifetime. He was little known to the art world at the time of his death, but his paintings became famous after he died.
  7. In 1907, Picasso’s “Les Demoiselles d’Avignon” was so way ahead of its time that it was rejected by the art world and the general public. This painting of five figures in a brothel is nowadays regarded as the most outstanding work of Picasso’s earlier years.
  8. In 1961, second-grade school teacher at Belvoir Elementary, Claire Heiss, flunked Leslie Sigal in art (because she could not stay within the lines with her crayon)

The lesson to be learned? Listen to your own heart about who you want to be and what you want to do in life and then, do it. Period.

Free Clip-Art / Icons of the Day

The following images are either full or reduced size previews. Simply right-click (or control-click) on the preview to save the image(s) of your choice to your desktop. (Unless otherwise noted, downloads are 512px X 512px in .png format). As always, usage of any of the images offered on this blog are free for your personal use while subject to the limitations of my Creative Commons Non-Commercial – Attribution – No Derivatives – Share Alike- 3.0 license. (See sidebar for details)

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The Cat’s Got My Tongue

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For the last six weeks or so, I’ve really had a hard time putting my thoughts into words (written and especially spoken). It’s one of the symptoms (or side-effects?) of both my epilepsy and leftover vestiges of the three rounds of chemotherapy, wherein I know in my conscious mind exactly what I want to say but for some reason can’t get the message to my mouth or hands. It comes and goes without warning and can last for anywhere from a few seconds to a few hours, and has on occasion lasted for several days. It is incredibly frustrating – especially when it creeps up on me in the middle of a sentence! Something in my brain diverts the message from it’s “normal” pathway to who knows where. I think that if I can discover that location which holds all my lost words, I’ll probably find the missing mates to my socks and mittens there as well. ;=)

Free Clip-Art / Icons of the Day

The following images are either full or reduced size previews. Simply right-click (or control-click) on the preview to save the image(s) of your choice to your desktop. (Unless otherwise noted, downloads are 512px X 512px in .png format). As always, usage of any of the images offered on this blog are free for your personal use while subject to the limitations of my Creative Commons Non-Commercial – Attribution – No Derivatives – Share Alike- 3.0 license. (See sidebar for details)

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Dot's The Cat!

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