Social Insecurity, Maxine’s Dark Waters, and Hit the Road, Hillary!
Hello, everyone, and welcome to our USA Really podcast for September 21. I’m Jesse Dominick for USA Really, and today there’s a whole bunch of interesting stuff for you, including news on everyone’s favorite — Maxine Waters, more on the Brett Cavanaugh case, and a special treat for today — a first from USA Really. I don’t want to give it away yet, but we’ll get to it.
First, let’s take a look at some of the pieces that hit the web after we recorded yesterday’s podcast.
A couple of days ago we talked about the high level of violent crimes in Chicago, and today we have a sad example for you. It’s not completely clear what exactly happened, but four people were shot, including a 13-year-old girl and a 6-month-old boy who was shot twice in the abdomen and is in critical condition. The girl was hit in the shoulder and is in critical but stable condition. It looks like the victims were in one car, and a masked man jumped out of another car and began shooting at them. Police don’t think it was a random attack but was perhaps some kind of family rivalry. A 27-year-old man and 37-year old woman were also injured, though not seriously. You can check out that story in our piece, “Due to a Family Dispute, Two Children Were Almost Killed in Chicago.”
Unfortunately, America seems to be a little gun crazy lately, or maybe the stories are just being covered better. In addition to this Chicago shooting, four people were shot inside a Pennsylvania courthouse on Wednesday, and five were shot at a software company in Wisconsin, with the shooter dying in both cases. And then there was another shooting yesterday in a warehouse in Aberdeen, Maryland, near Baltimore. Several people are in critical condition. Roads closed down and local schools were on lockdown while police investigated. Be sure to read “Multiple People Shot in Harford County, Maryland” for that whole story.
Then we’ve got some bizarre news for you about Maxine Waters, but then again, what news about Maxine Waters isn’t bizarre? She’s that loud-mouthed Representative for California who harbors a rabid hatred for all things Trump. She has publicly called for his staff to be confronted and harassed wherever they are found, and her liberal cronies have been doing just that. She’s also been a featured speaker on sexual harassment at women’s conferences, where the founder of the #MeToo movement also spoke. Well, now it seems Waters’ might be getting hers too. Terrence K. Williams, a commentator, actor, comedian, entrepreneur, speaker, and self-proclaimed fried chicken specialist with a massive social media following has accused Waters’ of sexually assaulting him when he was two. He’s gotten 20,000 retweets and 40,000 likes on Twitter about it, but so far that’s about as far as the story has gotten. Sudden revelations of long-gone sexual crimes seem to be a fad lately, so we’ll have to wait and see how the dust settles on this story. For now, we’ve just got an accusation.
That’s what hit the press yesterday, so let’s jump into today’s articles. First let’s take a look at today’s opinion piece.
“What is the Best Age to Retire/Collect Social Security Benefits in the United States?” Jeffrey Silverman ponders this question in his article of the same title. Social Security's full-benefit retirement age is gradually increasing because of legislation passed by Congress in 1983. Traditionally, the full benefit age was 65, with early retirement benefits first available at age 62, taken with a permanent reduction to 80 percent of the full benefit amount. Currently, the full benefit age is 66 years and 2 months for people born in 1955, and it will gradually rise to 67 for those born in 1960 or later. But then again, we have to wonder, are we even going to be in an economic state where we can afford to retire at 65 or 67, and are we going to live long enough to cash in on these benefits coming to us? The reality is that many people in the US, especially amongst the poor and minorities, will not live long enough to collect full benefits because of health and socio-economic factors that affect the quality of their lives and how long they live. Silverman therefore argues that “Americans should not be upset that the government is raising the retirement age… They should be more concerned that the system is inherently rigged against lower income workers, the poor and those who were not dealt the best hand in terms of genetics and life expediency.” There’s a lot more to this story and Jeffrey Silverman’s got it all for you.
And of course, we’re keeping you up to date on all the latest news coming out today.
First, Hillary Clinton’s historical significance has been put to the test in Texas schools, and it looks like she didn’t make the grade. The Texas State Board of Education has put out its revised curriculum standards, and the results have democrats a little miffed. Clinton is out, and surprisingly, so is Helen Keller. But the heroes of the Alamo and several references to Judeo-Christian values are still in. Of course, Clinton and Keller and the others who have been chopped can still be discussed, it’s just no longer necessary. Teachers are saying these changes weren’t politically motivated but were aimed at improving the education process. Young students are currently required to learn about too many historical figures and it devolves into rote memorization. They’re hoping a slimmer, more streamlined curriculum will boost the education experience. One criticism came from House Democratic Caucus Chairman Chris Turner who tweeted, “Hillary Clinton is the 1st and only woman to be the presidential nominee of a major party in U.S. history. Enough said,” and actually, whatever you think of Hillary, it’s kinda hard to disagree with him here. Get the full story in “Democrats Furious After Texas Schools Explain Why They Removed Hillary Clinton from the History Curriculum.”
And Maxine Waters isn’t the only being accused of long ago transgressions. Probably most of you have heard by now about the accusations against Brett Kavanaugh, which, even if they’re true, the timing of the revelation is quite clearly an attempt to railroad his taking up a seat on the Supreme Court. His accuser, Christine Blasey Ford has removed her social media profiles, which means no one can find anything incriminating against her there, and now we find out that even her high school yearbooks have been scrubbed from the web by the Holton-Arms School that’s so proud of her for using her voice. The obvious question to ask is, “Why?” Well, it turns out one blogger was ahead of the game and copied all the yearbook files, expecting them to be erased from the school’s site. He says if it were Casey running for Supreme Court, the headline would read, “CHRISTINE BLASEY FORD AND THE DRUNKEN WHITE PRIVILEGED RACIST PLAYGIRLS OF HOLTON-ARMS.” Apparently the school wasn’t the picture of purity like it wants you to think, at least not in the early 80s when Casey was making her way through. Our piece, “Shocking Truth on Kavanaugh’s Accuser: Christine Blasey Ford's High School Yearbooks,” has all the right stuff to push your buttons — binge drinking, sexual promiscuity, and … RACISM. This is definitely one you’re going to want to check out.
There’s a second piece on Christine Blasey Ford: “Ultimatum of a Resentful Woman.” She claims she wants justice 35 years after the fact, but she’s got a number of ultimatums too, that really make it seem that what she wants is a soapbox. Head on over to this article for the full scoop on her conditions and what they mean.
Next up, we’ve got something really special for you — the first-ever USA Really documentary film! “Puerto Rico: the Land of Broken Dreams” brings you the true short story of Puerto Rico today. When people think about Puerto Rico, their first thought is often beautiful vistas, colonial architecture, colorful little streets and never-ending beaches, complete with Spanish forts facing the ocean. It’s a vacation paradise for white middle-class Americans. However, this is only one side of the story. There’s another Puerto Rico — a Puerto Rico that the U.S. government and the corporate media have done their best to hide from the public eye. We hope we’ve whetted your appetite — make sure to check out this first-ever USA Really film!
Let’s take a look now at today’s this day in history article. It’s got it all, from historic fires and hurricanes, to treason and nukes. The Great Fire of New York was raging this day in 1776, just five days after the British took New York. A quarter of the city, with 493 structures burned. Benedict Arnold carried out his treasonous treason this day in 1780, and if you’re like me, you’ve never really been sure what he did. We’ve got the info for you. The Great Hurricane of 1938 made landfall this day, taking out 500-700 people. The North American XB-70 Valkyrie, the world's first Mach 3 bomber, makes its maiden flight from Palmdale, California this day in 1964, and the U.S. performed a nuclear test at the Nevada Test Site this day in 1983. Of course, there’s much more there, so be sure to head on over to the article.
That’s what we’ve got for you today, but, as always, we’ve got a preview of tomorrow’s opinion piece for you.
Have you heard, America has become the world’s largest gas producer again? And it doesn’t look like we’re slowing down. Exxon is projecting to triple its production by 2025. The Bureau of Land Management is set to approve another four oil and gas lease sales in Wyoming, Alaska, Colorado and New Mexico, and there’s more still being offered in Nevada, Montana, Utah, Wyoming, and the eastern states. You know what that all means, right? We’ll be filling up our tanks on the cheap for years and decades to come! Hallelujah! Nothing to complain about there, right? But, well, as usual, there’s another side to this whole festival. Tomorrow’s piece, “On America’s ‘End All’ Oil & Gas Boom” by Phil Butler makes the case for why it’s not time to bust out the bubbly just yet. For one, those concerned about global warming and the environment in general certainly aren’t thrilled about the prospect of gas guzzlers cruising down the highway uninhibited by gas prices. And what of all the instability the U.S. causes in the world to keep ourselves on the top the gas heap? Who’s counting the souls instead of the dollars? And this boom isn’t just a Trump thing — these plans have been laid well in advance. If you’ve given any thought to gas prices, the environment, or international intrigue, then this piece is for you.
That’s all we’ve got for you today. As always, thanks for listening and thanks for reading. For USA Really, this is Jesse Dominick, wishing you a great weekend.