When to Use Passive Voice

May 31st, 2019 8:05pm


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Self Help Books Are Making You Worse

May 2nd, 2019 2:59pm

I recently visited a bookstore to buy myself a birthday present. When I came through the door, I immediately encountered a large table with dozens of self-help books on it. The store's management had strategically placed the table in a location that would force customers to walk around it.

My first thought was that there sure are a lot of folks writing self-help books. My second thought was there must be a whole lot of folks seeking some kind of help.  

Not the least bit interested in self-help books, I meandered through the mystery, philosophy, and current events sections. But I kept thinking about all those self-help books. All those self-help authors. And all those people wanting some kind of help. 

I understand people want more happiness, more fulfillment, more whatever. I get that. But I wondered why so many are searching for something more these days. I have some thoughts on it, but I'll save those for another day. Maybe another column.

I returned to the self-help display and glanced at the titles. I even picked up a few books and skimmed random pages. Some were well-known classics and others had catchy titles without much substance. What I saw in those few moments confirmed two things I already knew. First, not all mental health professionals write well. In fact, many write poorly. Second, not all self-help authors have anything original to say. 

As I thought about it all, I realized most people buying self-help books do so based on several unstated assumptions. First, they assume they can or should be happier, more fulfilled, or better in some way. Second, they assume the author has knowledge that will help them get there. And third, even if the first two assumptions are true, they assume reading the book will lead them to greater happiness, fulfillment, or to whatever improvement they seek. That third assumption bothers me. 

Reading a book, by itself, can't make you happier or more fulfilled. It would be nice if you could buy a book, spent a few hours reading it, and have a better life, but that's not how it works. What usually happens is you buy the book, you read it, and you feel a bit better for perhaps a day, and then you forget what you learned and revert to your familiar thought and behavior patterns. So eventually, when you feel you want more happiness or fulfillment, you buy another self-help book and the same thing happens. After a while you own dozens of self-help books, but you're not happier or more fulfilled.

Don't get me wrong, there are some great self-help books. Two I particularly like are The Road Less Travelled by M. Scott Peck and The Way of the Peaceful Warrior by Dan Millman.  But, assuming the book contains some useful idea or knowledge, reading the book is just the first step. You have to take that idea or knowledge, consider it in the context of your own life, and apply it in your life.  Every day. For the rest of your life. This is what mental health professionals refer to as "doing the work."

Self-help books hurt you by leading you to believe that just reading a book can improve your life. They suck up your money and time, and leave you frustrated because you did not realize reading the book was just the first step on a long journey.

I could buy a book on how to throw a football, but to expect that just reading the book would make me a better passer would be foolish. I would have to take the knowledge gained from that book and practice. I would have to push myself, ask what I am doing right, what I am doing wrong, and seek feedback from others. Maybe find a coach. If I did those things, day after day, week after week, month after month, and year after year, I would get better.

So instead of buying another self-help book, take one down from your shelf that you've already read. Read it again. Pick three ideas from it that resonate with you and write them down on an index card. Then consider those ideas in the context of your life. Devise a written plan on how you will incorporate those ideas into your life. Then execute that plan and hold yourself accountable. Every day.





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My Beach Baby Loves Lovin' Where My Rosemary Goes United We Stand Dat Ding

April 8th, 2019 8:33pm - Posted By: Mark Cohen

I have fond memories of many 1970's one hit wonders. My favorites include Love Grows Where My Rosemary Goes by Edison Lighthouse, My Baby Loves Lovin' by White Plains, Beach Baby by First Class, United We Stand by the Brotherhood of Man, and Gimme Dat Ding by the Pipkins.

But what you probably didn't know is that the lead singer for each of those groups was the same man - Tony Burrows.

Born in Great Britain in 1942, Burrows started his musical career as a member of the Kestrels. That group included Roger Greenaway and Roger Cook, who wrote Long Cool Woman in a Black Dress for the Hollies.

Burrows later joined the Ivy League, which became The Flower Pot Men, which included two founding members of Deep Purple. The Flower Pot Men reached # 4 on the U.K. charts in 1967 with Let's Go to San Francisco.

Burrows had his biggest hit in January of 1970 as the lead singer of Edison Lighthouse.  Love Grows Where My Rosemary Grows was a fast paced feel-good tune that hit # 1 on the U.K. charts and # 5 in the U.S. Burrows did not rest on that success.  He got back with The Flower Pot Men, they renamed the band White Plains, and had a hit with My Baby Loves Lovin' in March of 1970, when it reached # 13 on the U.S. charts.

That was a busy year for Burrows. He sang lead on United We Stand for the Brotherhood of Man, which peaked at # 13 on the U.S. charts in the Spring of 1970.

In April of 1970, Burrows and Greenaway formed the Pipkins. Burrows sang lead on Gimme Dat Ding, which reached # 9 on the U.S. Charts. (One of the songwriters was Albert Hammond, who later had a hit with It Never Rains in Southern California).

But Burrows was not done. In 1974, he sang lead on Beach Baby for the First Class, which reached # 4 in the U.S. Beach Baby was another feel-good tune that recalled the lost innocence of the era before Vietnam and Watergate.

Beach Baby was Burrow's last big hit, but he continued a successful career that included singing backups with musicians such as Tom Jones, Elton John, and Rod Stewart. He sang background vocals on Elton John's Tiny Dancer.

Tony Burrows remains the only vocalist to hit the U.S. Top 40 as the lead singer for five different groups. 

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We talkin' 'bout fractals

March 25th, 2019 9:06pm

A long time ago, basketball player Alan Iverson went on a rant when asked about missing practice. Here is a link to that:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eGDBR2L5kzI

As the author of The Fractal Murders, I decided to make a parody of that, and I call it, "We talkin' 'bout fractals."

Click here for my parody video:  We talkin' 'bout fractals.   The video may not open, but may instead download and you may have to then click on it  to view it.

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My Right Mindset Routine

March 25th, 2019 12:51am - Posted By: Mark Cohen


My Right Mindset Routine

If you can't see the entire PDF, email me at mark@cohenslaw.com and I will email the article to you.

Posted in: The Big Picture

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It don't come easy

March 16th, 2019 12:48am - Posted By: Mark Cohen

Click here for my video - It Do Come Easy: dontcomeeasy

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83% is Still Pretty Good

March 7th, 2019 3:21pm

As a boy, I participated in Boy Scouts, and I enjoyed it. Our Scoutmaster, Ken Salo, had served in the Air Force in Vietnam and ran our troop like a military organization. But, damn, I had fun and learned tons. Warm weather months always included a backpacking trip. I learned first aid, Morse Code, knots, and outdoor skills. When I was sixteen, my friend Mike Badley and I worked as summer counselors the Peaceful Valley Scout Ranch near Kiowa, Colorado, and that was a blast. 

Scouts must memorize several things, including the Scout Law.   The Scout Law provides, "A Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean, and reverent."

I've been required to memorize several writings in my life, but there are only two I can still recite verbatim -- the "We hold these truths" passage from the Declaration of Independence and the Scout Law.

But here's the thing. I question things. When I think about the Scout Law now, I'm not one hundred percent on board with it. 

I don't have a problem with trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, cheerful, thrifty, brave, or clean. Sure, there might be a situation where loyalty must yield to other values. And it's becoming increasingly difficult for me to be cheerful when I think about what is happening to the country I once loved.  But in general, these are good traits to aspire to.

Obedient? Not so much. Sure, I sometimes obey. I obey traffic laws (mostly) because those exist for my safety. But I can't support blind obedience to any authority. Disobedient people founded America. In 1773, disobedient people illegally boarded a ship at Griffin's Wharf in Boston and dumped 342 chests of tea into the harbor. (And for you Libertarian types, they were not protesting taxation, which the Constitution they subsequently wrote specifically authorizes; they were protesting taxation without representation.  The colonists had no voice in Parliament.).

I like disobedient people. People that won't conform. Take Copernicus, for example. A man who in 1543 had the cojones to write, "You boneheads are all wrong; the sun does not revolve around the Earth, the Earth revolves around the sun." (I'm translating from his original Latin).  Disobedient people have often been at the leading edge of social change.  Gandhi, Rosa Parks, Muhammad Ali, Nelson Mandela. America can probably use more disobedient people these days, and the Republicans are well on their way to making it happen.

As for reverence, I never really believed there is an old white guy with a beard that sits on a throne up in the clouds and presides over everything. If that kind of God exists, why would he let Bill Buckner blow the 1986 World Series for the Red Sox? What kind of God lets a simple ground ball go right through the first baseman's legs? It makes no sense.

My problem with reverence is it sounds a lot like obedience -- both concepts require unquestioning deference to something else. As Saul Alinsky wrote, “Curiosity and irreverence go together. Curiosity cannot exist without the other. Curiosity asks, "Is this true?" "Just because this has always been the way, is the best or right way of life, the best or right religion, political or economic value, morality?" To the questioner, nothing is sacred. He detests dogma, defies any finite definition of morality, rebels against any repression of a free, open search of ideas no matter where they may lead. He is challenging, insulting, agitating, discrediting. He stirs unrest.” In an age where so many others are trying to influence and control us in so many ways with sound bites and meaningless phrases such as "Make America Great Again," irreverence is a sign of mental health.

Okay, if we're grading how I'm doing with the Scout Law, I got ten out of twelve.  That's eighty-three percent. That's still pretty good.

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Taxation is Theft, and You is an Idiot

June 4th, 2018 1:41am - Posted By: Mark Cohen

Taxation is Theft, and You is an Idiot.

A popular libertarian slogan is "taxation is theft." This may be one of the dumbest statements ever made.

The way language works is that we use different words to denote different things. We have one word for "cat" and another for "white."  Because a cat and white two different concepts. This convention – using different words to denote different concepts – serves us well because it enables clear communication.

One problem with language is that people sometimes misuse the verb to be.  People say, “The cat is white” when they really mean something like, “The cat has white fur.”  It’s harmless in that instance, but one popular form of argument is to think of something bad – theft – and equate it to something else you don’t like – taxation – using the word is.

Let’s break it down. Theft is when I take something from you without any legal right with the intent to permanently deprive you of it.  For example, Section 18-4-401 of the Colorado Revised Statutes, provides in relevant part, “A person commits theft when he or she knowingly obtains, retains, or exercises control over anything of value of another without authorization or by threat or deception…” (Emphasis added).  And before you get all pissy about the way I punctuated that, writing “(Emphasis added).” after a quotation, see the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Bob Jones University v. United States, 461 U.S. 574 (1983) where the U.S. Supreme Court did the same thing, with only that Rehnquist dissenting.

Taxation is when government requires you to pay money pursuant to the lawful authority granted to the government in the organizing document or laws passed by your elected representatives.

In the context of federal taxes in the United States, Article 1, Section 8, Clause 1 of the Constitution provides in relevant part, “The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States…”  The Sixteenth Amendment provides, “The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States, and without regard to any census or enumeration.”

So, while "taxation is theft" is catchy and simple, it is logically wrong, as are many simple "X is Y" statements.

Instead of simply asserting that taxation is theft, I recently challenged some libertarians to define both terms and explain why taxation is theft.  One libertarian friend took me up, but he’s a smart man and he saw my point, then attempted to go around it by asserting, “Taxation is legalized theft,” which gives new meaning to the term theft because using that line of thinking there are two types of theft – legal and illegal.Taxation is when the government of the jurisdiction that you live in, whether you like it or not, requires you to pay money pursuant to the lawful authority granted to the government in the organizing document or by laws passed by your elected representatives.

But libertarians are not shouting, “Taxation islegalized theft,” they are shouting, “Taxation is theft.”  And, sadly, in an age where conservatives loath knowledge and science, simple phrases appeal to people that lack the time or desire to consider complex issues. That’s why I purposely used “You is an idiot” in this essay’s title – to illustrate what happens when we use is to equate unrelated concepts.  Of course, not everyone that proclaims “taxation is theft” is an idiot.  Libertarianism is one concept and idiocy is a separate concept.  That’s why we have different words for them.

Finally, note I did not assert “taxation is theft” is THE dumbest statement ever made. That would probably be something like, “Hey, I think we should take Ryan Leaf over Peyton Manning,” or “There is no difference between the two parties,” or “Roy Cohen is better looking than Mark Cohen.”   

So, while "taxation is theft" is catchy and simple, it is also wrong, as are many simple "X is Y" statements." Instead of simply asserting that taxation is theft, I challenge them to define both terms and explain why taxation is theft.

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Great Moments in My Air Force Career

June 3rd, 2018 1:48pm - Posted By: Mark Cohen

Early one morning in 1985 or 1986, while I was serving as a young Air Force legal officer, my pals and I were sitting around the lounge at the Base Legal Office at Offutt Air Force Base, drinking weak government coffee and talking sports. Parking on that side of the base was limited, and you had to arrive early if you wanted a decent parking space.

We were a group of young JAG officers, mostly captains, one first lieutenant, and one crusty old Senior Master Sergeant whose job was to oversee the enlisted staff.  We were talking about a young boxing phenom named Mike Tyson.  My back was to the entry.

Suddenly the Senior Master Sergeant stood and called the room to attention.  I’d been on active duty more than two years already and had never seen anything like that in the relaxed atmosphere of the Base Legal Office. And I thought, “Sergeant Longuil, I’m not falling for your bullshit at 7:00 a.m.”  But then my pals also stood and came to attention.  So, I turned around in my seat to see what was going on.    

And there was the four-star general that commanded the Strategic Air Command, General John T. Chain.  And the full colonel who job it was to follow him around.  I stood, faced him, and came to attention.

Well, I guess General Chain figured my response was “good enough for a lawyer” because he said nothing. Unaware of the parking problem, he remarked about how good it was to see folks at work so early in the morning, then went on with the rest of his day.

As I look back on this incident, I think if you are going to give a man the power to destroy the world by deploying ten thousand nuclear weapons from missiles, bombers, and submarines, it’s probably good that he has the kind of personality that can let small stuff - like a young captain not standing quickly - go like water off a duck’s back. 

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The True Story of Snappy the Turtle and Trooper White

February 23rd, 2018 11:42pm - Posted By: Mark Cohen

This is a true story. I changed the names to protect some of the men involved.  Some are from Nederland and own, like, music businesses and stuff in Nederland, and they would not want their involvement known. I have also changed my brother Roy Cohen’s name to “Troy” to protect his identity.  Oh, and I changed the name of the Nebraska State Trooper because the tall Caucasian Trooper with the buzz cut that was patrolling Highway 83 near Thedford that Wednesday morning probably would not want his supervisors to know about this. 

These events took place in July of 2008.  Each year some of my guy friends get together and rent a bunkhouse on the Niobrara River near the Nebraska / South Dakota border.  We call this Mancation. It’s a yearly event where we sit around the fire discuss quantum physics, praise our mothers, and drink milk.  I don’t want to give the exact location because some of the guys have wives and girlfriends, and they don’t want the wives and girlfriends hiring someone to spy on us.

It was a beautiful, sunny morning and I driving my Dodge Durango north on Nebraska Highway 83 with the music cranking.  There were four other men with me –  my brother Troy and three others.  The windows were down.  I had not consumed any alcohol or drugs because I was driving.  And I don’t do that kind of thing. Troy and the others had maybe consumed some tequila, a few Colorado herbal products, and/or some other things. I mean, if we’re being honest, they were in an altered state. Because we had just purchased enough alcohol at the WalMart in North Platte to supply fourteen men for five days.

You must understand that we kind of stood out. Because I had a Thule rooftop carrier on top of my SUV and we had written “Kim Jong-Il’s Dead Body” on it in yellow paint. And we had written a lot of other silly stuff on the sides of my vehicle.

Highway 83 has one lane in each direction and there is very little traffic. There are mostly just a lot of marshes, cows, and red winged blackbirds.  When what to my wandering eyes should appear but a snapping turtle that must have been fourteen inches in diameter slowly crossing the road. We could not believe this size of this guy. I mean, Thedford, Nebraska, ain’t exactly the Galapagos. 

Now, my mom is from Alabama, and I lived in Alabama while in the Air Force, so, though I am not a redneck myself, I know the redneck mind. I can think like a redneck. And I realized that if we did not help this turtle, whose named was Snappy, get to the other side of the road, some redneck in a pickup would purposely run his 275/65 R17’s over Snappy and kill him. 

But though I can think like a redneck, I’m also half-Jewish, which means I can also think like God. Or at least Moses. I knew the right thing to do was help Snappy. We pulled off to the side of the road. We all got out of my SUV and approached the turtle. I carefully put one hand on each of side of Snappy’s shell, thinking I would just pick him up and deposit it on the grass on the other side of the road.

Well, let me tell you, those little f$#%$ers have LONG necks that can reach around further than you think and bite you faster than a Republican congressman caught having sex with a child can say “family values.”  And they’re freakin’ heavy. So, I instantly dropped Snappy and knew I needed to come up with another plan.  “Find a stick,” I said.

Sticks ain’t easy to come by in the sandhills, but Troy produced a tiki torch from the back of my SUV, so I used the torch to start prodding Snappy to the other side of the road. The absurdity of five over-educated middle-aged men using a tiki torch to prod a giant turtle across a highway in rural Nebraska amused me. And it was even more amusing to Troy and my friends because they were enjoying what you might call a tequila sunrise.  So, we were all laughing hard and a couple of the guys wanted to get photos of this turtle.

It was about this time that the Trooper (remember the Trooper?  This is a story about the Trooper) pulled in behind my SUV and activated his flashing lights. He exited his vehicle, took a as they say in police jargon, took a quick look at the rooftop carrier with “Kim Jong-Il’s Dead Body” painted on it, and said, “Good morning, fellas, I’m Trooper White from the Nebraska State Patrol, what do we have going on?” He was trying hard to keep a straight face and give the stern State Trooper look.

Being a lawyer, I knew just what to say. “Well, we were just minding our own business and driving the posted speed limit with Kim Jong-Il’s dead body on top of my truck when this freakin’ giant turtle thumbed us down…”  And then Trooper White couldn’t hold it in anymore and cracked a smile.  And I explained we were just trying to do a good deed for Snappy before some drunk liberals from Colorado high on pot tried to run him over.

Trooper White really couldn’t think of anything to charge us with, but he was amused and stayed with us until I finished prodding Snappy to the other side of the road. He was very friendly. He did not ask any of us for our ID and if he noticed that Troy and the others might have consumed a few things, he didn’t say anything. 

Trooper White pulled away and then we all piled back into my Durango. Troy and the others went back to maybe consuming a few things. I never asked Troy or the others about the quantity of illegal substances they might have had in the back of my SUV. I didn’t want to know. Snappy went on to lead a productive live. He lives with his wife and three children near Thedford, Nebraska.

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The True Story of Dave Cleveland

January 19th, 2018 11:25pm - Posted By: Mark Cohen

 The facts giving rise to this column began 48 years ago.  I was in seventh grade at Cherry Creek West Junior High.  (This was before the political correctness Gods decided “junior high” might stigmatize the little ones and changed it “middle school”). 

Believe it or not, in 1970 I was not the 215-pound black belt specimen of masculinity that I am now.  In fact, I was kind of a wuss.  I got picked on a lot.  Especially in gym. 

One day we were all lined up in the gymnasium for jumping jacks or whatever.  The kid in front of me, whose name I don’t remember and who probably has a half-dozen domestic violence convictions now, started picking on me.  The kid behind me was a tall boy named Dave Cleveland.  I did not know Dave well.  We did not hang in the same circles.  Dave saw what was going on, walked up to the other kid, gave him a push, and emphatically told him to leave me alone.  And that was the end of my ordeal, at least on that day.    

Dave and I were not friends.  He didn’t really know me.  He could have minded his own business.  But he did the right thing and it stuck with me.

That would be a good story if it ended there, but it doesn’t.  About eight years later I worked one summer at a pizza place in Glendale called Figaro’s Pizza.  This was great job for a twenty-year-old because I got free pizza, all the 3.2% beer I could drink, and had control over the music.  

One Friday night Dave Cleveland walked in with some other people to drink beer and play pool.  I took his order at the counter.  I don’t think he recognized me.  (To be fair, I looked a lot different.  And it was a Friday night in 1978, so many twenty-year-old men would have been drunk, stoned, or both). 

I called Dave’s name about ten minutes later to tell him his pizza was ready.  He came up to the counter and began to remove his wallet from his jeans pocket.  “It’s on the house,” I said.  He gave me a quizzical look, shrugged, took his pizza and went off to enjoy the rest of his evening.

Through the magic of Facebook, Dave and I were able to reconnect.  And because my agreement with the Mountain-Ear is that I can write anything I want so long as I don’t get the paper sued, I thought I would use this opportunity to publicly thank Dave 48 years after he stuck up for me.

I think the lesson here is stick up for others when you can.  It’s the right thing to do.  And you might get a free pizza.

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My Pledge of Allegiance

October 13th, 2017 11:37am - Posted By: Mark Cohen


Posted in: Politics

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The Case for Nuclear War

September 5th, 2017 4:14pm - Posted By: Mark Cohen

I am so tired of my liberal snowflake friends whining about the possibility that Trump might start a nuclear war. I guess I’m just one of those people that always sees the glass as half-full.

It’s true that a nuclear war would kill hundreds of millions of innocent people. But you can’t stop the analysis there; you must also consider the possible benefits of a nuclear war.

One benefit of a nuclear war is that we could finally put the global warming issue to rest. When you have a nuclear war, stuff burns. Burning causes smoke. Smoke blocks the sun’s rays. Without the sun’s rays, the Earth cools. Scientists call this Nuclear Winter. Global warming solved.

Another benefit would be intense pressure on Congress to pass meaningful healthcare reform. Nuclear war brings radioactive fallout. Radioactive fallout causes all sorts of cancers. The Americans that survive a nuclear exchange will unite as never before to pressure Congress to establish a healthcare system that provides coverage for all Americans.

Nuclear war would also have economic benefits. As with any Republican economic program, one of the main selling points of a nuclear war would be job creation. After the mushroom clouds subside, someone will have to clean up the mess. Someone will have to rebuild the roads, bridges, schools, and infrastructure. And with a critical shortage of workers (due to so many being dead or ill), the free market will make sure these are high-paying jobs. And, as we all know from Republican Economic Theory 101, those workers will spend that money in the few remaining stores and it will trickle down to the less fortunate.

A nuclear war would also solve the overpopulation program. In 1960, Colorado’s population was 1.753 million people. Today it is 5.57 million people. No wonder it takes five hours to drive from A-Basin to Denver on a Sunday afternoon. A nuclear war would restore a little sanity to our out of control growth.

Finally, a Trump-initiated nuclear war might cause a few of the surviving voters to reconsider their belief that “there is no difference between the two parties.” It might cause a few surviving voters to rethink their opposition to “voting for the lesser of two evils.” I’m not saying a nuclear war would have these effects, just that it might. It’s theoretically possible. You can’t rule it out.

In closing, I’m tired of the nattering nabobs of negativism looking only at the downside of a nuclear war without considering the possible benefits. As Americans, we owe it to ourselves to examine the issue objectively and consider both the costs and the benefits.


Posted in: Politics

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The Proper Use of Animal References in Law

July 31st, 2017 11:38pm - Posted By: Mark Cohen

CLICK HERE TO READ "The Proper Use of Animal References in Law." 

Posted in: Humor

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Love Does Not Conquer All

January 22nd, 2017 2:28pm - Posted By: Mark Cohen

I enjoyed attending the Women's March in Denver. I wanted my body to be among the many protesting the new regime and mourning the loss of what once was a great nation. I saw many creative signs, but I saw some proclaiming, "Love Conquers All." That's garbage. Love did not defeat the Nazi's. Infantry defeated the Nazi's.

Republican fascists have been taking advantage of the basic goodness of Democrats, liberals, and progressives for decades. They are better at dirty politics than we are. Nixon successfully demonized George McGovern, a man that flew more than two dozen missions over Germany. Lee Atwater employed a subtle racism in his Willie Horton ad against Michael Dukakis, a man that spent two years in the Army in post-war Korea. These draft-dodging fascists defamed Navy hero John Kerry with their Swift Boat BS. It is way past time to start fighting fire with fire. Our mantra must be, "When they go low, we go for the throat.”

Sign all the petitions you want, but Republican politicians don't care. Their corporate pimps pay them to push an agenda. They know that even if they don't win re-election, their pimps will give them a job paying five times what they collect now. Arlo Guthrie once said, "If you want to end war, you gotta sing loud." It's time to start treating these so-called leaders like the corporate whores and traitors they are. Showing them any respect only makes them think you are a sucker.

Stand outside their offices and homes with signs and make noise. Write scathing letters to the editor. Show up unannounced at their offices and ask tough questions to their staff, and get it all on video. Then post it. Put bumper stickers on your vehicle to let others know your views. (I just ordered a stick that says, “Proud Veteran. Not My President”). If you can find their home address or phone, share that information so it goes viral.

I have Republican friends. Not all are stupid or racist. So, tying the GOP to Hitler might seem unfair. As a generalization, I don’t think it is unfair, but who cares if it is? Being fair has gotten us nowhere. Do you want to run a noble campaign and lose or do you want fight fire with fire and win? It’s that simple.

It's time to mock the Republican party and its leaders mercilessly. Every Republican leader today is either stupid or a corporate whore. If you believe God created the earth five thousand years ago because the Bible says so, despite the evidence of carbon dating, you are stupid. Not all Republican leaders can be stupid, though, because some have been successful doctors and lawyers. But their corporate puppet masters pay them to spout nonsense that will fire up their stupid constituents -- statements like, "Bill Clinton will Take Your Guns” and “Obama will take your guns.”  Pro-lifers love to show photos of aborted babies, and that’s their right. Why shouldn't we show photos of homeless vets and heckle Republican leaders that vote to cut VA funding?  We shouldn’t we tie Trump, McConnell, and Ryan to Putin and call them traitors? That’s what they are.

Employing outright lies and racism, Trump tapped into the justifiable anger of the American people. (He had help from a Republican FBI director and a corporate owned media that wanted this to be a close election and ignored his many flaws). The way to win this war is to make this a battle between the 1% and the rest of us. We must mock and demonize Republican leaders until public contempt for them is so palpable that they decide they'd rather return to private life. The Vietnam War ended when Nixon could not get any sleep because protestors were shouting outside his bedroom window every night. There's a lesson to be learned there.

I’m not saying you must hate Republican leaders; hate harms your body. I’m just saying you’re naïve if you believe love will solve this problem. Don’t hate them; mock and demonize them in a calm, dispassionate manner to delegitimize them. It’s not personal, you’ll just be doing a job for your country.

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