“For Sale: Social Media Followers”

by Anil Shrivastava ‘Musafir’

There is a new kind of enterprise in town. It’s called “purchasing Social Media Followers.” If you are on social media such as Instagram, YouTube, or if you write a blog, you don’t have to grow a following organically. You can purchase them and their likes through companies that will bring instant followers to your site. Big celebrities, businesses, and politicians do buy followers all the time. Some famous names and brands subscribing to such businesses include Kim Kardashian, Newt Gingrich, Lady Gaga, Sean Combs, Pepsi, Mercedes-Benz, and even some U.S. presidents.

Selling and buying social media followers is a lucrative business. Buying followers and their ‘likes’ can generate a tremendous return on investment (ROI). As an example, you can buy an entire existing Twitter page on eBay for $35 and instantly have 3,700 followers. Another company, Fast Followerz can provide 100 Twitter followers for merely $4.Purchasing social media followers can be a boom for people who use their social platforms and blogs for profit. YouTube pays $5 for every 1,000 views. More traffic to one’s site can generate more income for the owner of that site. A typical advertiser pays an average of $0.18 to $0.30 per view. For the sellers of products or services online, more traffic to their sites can surely create more buyers.

With the more followers you have, it is easier to become an influencer. An influencer is someone who has built a reputation and loyal following by sharing regularly on their social accounts. Influencers are able to convince their audiences to jump onto trends and buy certain products. To get to this point, one needs to grow following as well as come up with posts that generate strong engagement from followers.

Influencers make thousands of dollars per sponsored post. Celebrities are the biggest influencers. They earn millions of dollars in product endorsements, but ordinary folks can become nano-influences and earn hundreds or thousands of dollars per post.

People who like to write have become social media influencers and are making money through writing blogs. Some people are using forums like YouTube and Facebook to teach arts and crafts, and because of the various tools present on these social networking forums, they are earning a lot of money.

Of course, you need some kind of talent to engage and keep your followers loyal to your posts. The talent can be in any field, photography, writing, makeup, or fashion. However, the first requirement is to have at least 1,000 followers. That’s where “purchasing Social Media Followers” can be of help.

Who Is Afraid of A Hispanic Majority? Anil Shrivastava

Farm day laborers work at a strawberry field in San Quintin Valley, Baja California State, Mexico on April 23, 2015. Some 30.000 pesasants of Baja California denounced on March the conditions of exploitation in which they work, similar to those of two million day workers in Mexico, but their scarcity of resources prevents them from going on strike while they negotiate with their employers and the government. AFP PHOTO/ALFREDO ESTRELLA (Photo credit should read ALFREDO ESTRELLA/AFP/Getty Images)

Hispanics, mostly Mexicans and those coming from other Spanish-speaking countries are the largest minority group in America. There is an influx of undocumented immigrants coming into the U.S. from those countries. Many of us seem to be uneasy about this and are concerned that Hispanics will ultimately replace Caucasians as a majority ethnic and racial group in the U.S.

If we are so afraid, why don’t we choose to work as farm laborers in the potato fields of Idaho or become household servants to serve the affluent? Why don’t we line up on the street corners of New Orleans to be picked up by the contractors to do grunt work? We don’t because most of us already have better-paying jobs and some choose to live on welfare over doing tough gigs. If those jobs are taken by the Hispanics, why are we complaining?

There are an estimated 12 million undocumented Hispanics in the U.S. working as waiters, maids, gardeners, and laborers. They are needed because market forces have created a demand for them. They are here because America and the Americans need them. The employers hire them despite the dysfunctional 1986 Simpson-Mazzoli Act that made it a crime to knowingly hire undocumented immigrants.

If it were not for those undocumented Hispanic laborers, many establishments in the U.S. would immediately shut down, giving rise to chaos. Furthermore, the Center for Immigration Study’s data show that “the average undocumented household pays more than $4,200 a year in federal taxes, for a total of nearly $16 billion” (Center for Immigration Studies). Undocumented immigrants can pay taxes using a nine-digit individual taxpayer identification number (ITIN). In addition, “about 43 percent, or $7 billion, of the federal taxes that the undocumented immigrants pay go to Social Security and Medicare” (Center for Immigration Studies).

The perception that the Hispanics will dilute American values and will not assimilate is wrong. The first-generation Hispanics speak Spanish for the same reason other first-generation non-English speaking immigrants speak in their own native tongues. According to research conducted by Jack Citrin, Amy Lerman, Michael Murakami (all of the University of California, Berkeley), second-generation Hispanics tend to accept English as their primary language and third-generation Hispanics only speak English.

The Hispanics are equally religious, if not more, compared to any other ethnic group living in America, and “there is no evidence that they or their offspring are quicker to abandon God or country than other Americans.” (Harvard scholar Samuel Huntington). Antonio Villaraigosa, the first Hispanic mayor of Los Angeles (2005-2013) is a good example. He was an American mayor, not a Hispanic mayor. His first act as mayor was requiring all city commissioners, his entire staff, and all city employees to sign an ethics pledge. In addition, he removed all lobbyists from city commissions and made it his policy to never appoint them to a city commission any time during his term. These efforts were completed to remove what he believed to be a sense of corruption and lack of trust in the city government. What is wrong with that?

More Hispanics have fought for America than any other immigrant group in recent years. Twenty thousand Hispanics took part in Operation Desert Shield and Desert Storm (1990-1991). By 1997, Hispanics made up almost a third of the infantry, artillery crews and specialists deployed to Bosnia for peacekeeping operations. Hispanics have also been on the frontlines in the war on terrorism and in Afghanistan.

Hispanics have made significant contributions to the American music and sports scene. They have enriched our lives and have mesmerized us with their sweet melodies and vibrant rhythms. Hispanic music’s wide variety is represented by artists like Jennifer Lopez, Selena, Gloria Stefan, and many more.

In my personal dealing with Hispanics, I have found them to be more polite and courteous than the rest of us. If in doubt, compare the aides, porters, and other support staff at any of the northeast American airports with their counterparts in San Jose, San Diego or Phoenix. Visit any gas station in those cities and ask questions to the attendants. The difference will be very apparent.

This is not stereotyping. These are my experiences after living in America for forty-seven years and upon dealing with both the Hispanic and the mainstream population. It is time we made Hispanic people a part of mainstream America and provided legal status to the twelve million undocumented immigrants living in fear so that they can also receive equal treatment and achieve their American dreams like the rest of us.

A Tale of Two Souls by Anil Shrivastava ‘Musafir’

Two souls accidentally met in the darkness and void of the universe traveling at FLT (faster than the speed of light). Since they were traveling in the same direction, they seemed stationary relative to each other and decided to chat (in English, of course).

Soul 1: “What will be your next assignment?”

Soul 2: “Don’t know! Right now, I am simply hurtling through space sideways. How about you?”

Soul 1: “I am going to reside in the body of thermophiles. They are cursed to live at high temperatures. Unfortunately, they feel the burn but cannot get out of the situation.”

Soul 2: “Too bad! How was your last assignment like?”

Soul 1: “Very complex! I was stationed inside the body of a human being belonging to homo sapiens species.”

Soul 2: “Where was that? “

Soul 1: “It was on the planet earth in the Milky Way galaxy about 28,000 light-years from the Galactic Center and 20 light-years above the Galactic Equator.”

Soul 2: “Why was your assignment so complex?”

Soul 1: “The earthlings are the most intriguing piece of machinery. They have fluctuating metabolism, puny memory. They are unpredictable and inconstant. They spend all their time worrying about water oxygen and food. They have an incalculable short life but they carry a big ego. They spend one-third of their lives sleeping. And worst of all, their structure starts to break down in their midlife.”

Soul 2: “Well, at least you can count your blessing that you had a very short assignment.”

Soul 1: “Yes, that‘s amazing. Doesn‘t that make you wonder that instead of letting the earthlings die so soon and having to make new ones, why can‘t He keep the ones He already has now?”

Soul 2: “That‘s a waste alright. What else about the earthlings?”

Soul 1: “Talking of waste, they are endowed with sense, reason and intellect, but they have decided to forgo their use. As a result of their karma, I have to take another assignment now. Some call it rebirth.”

By this time the two souls were traveling through Galaxy NGC4414 compressing the space in front of them and expanding the space behind them. That‘s what naturally happens when non-matters travel at FLT.

Soul 1: “What about you now? Where are you headed to?”

Soul 2: “I don‘t know. I have been wandering for more than five light years hoping to meet God. Sometimes I feel like shouting out loud, ‘God, are You real, or are You playing a tricks on me?”

Soul 1: “Well, tell me about your last assignment. Hopefully, I can solve the mystery.”

Soul 2: “To start with, I belonged in antimatter – the mirror of this universe. Everything there was opposite to this universe. This asymmetry is also called baryogenesis.”

Soul 1: “That‘s interesting! How was the creature you were assigned to?”

Soul 2: “Every creature of that baryogenesis spoke the truth, let alone the body that I was assigned to. Everyone loved his/her neighbors. They had no desire for riches, False-prestige, status or fame. They never yearned to harm others. Greed and attachment were completely absent from their lives.”

Soul 1: “I know exactly what has happened to you. You are liberated from the cycle of rebirths. You won‘t have any assignments anymore.”

Soul 2: “That‘s scary! How do I pass my time now?”

Soul 1: “You should stop wandering; suspend yourself right here and meditate until you merge with God, the ocean of all souls.”

Soul 2: “Why meditate?”

Soul 1: “Well, that’s better than doing nothing!”

Soul 1said goodbye and parted way and continued his journey to enter into the body of the thermophiles.

“Fragility of Technology” by Anil Shrivastava ‘Musafir’

In the mid-1980s when computer-aided automation was coming of age, technology loomed large on my mind. I switched to Artificial Intelligence (AI) and made a recognizable contribution to the Factory of the Future projects. Now retired, I still keep myself aware of leading-edge marvels such as the Internet of Things, BlockChain, cloud computing, and Internet coding languages.

Despite my fascination with technology, I worry about its fragility. I don’t think that the Internet technology has yet achieved the Six Sigma status that it must have in order to be 99.9997% perfect or to achieve a failure rate of 3.4 parts per million.

My wife teaches college-level courses online. Very often she faces system outages for hours either related to the fault of our Internet provider or due to the crash of the university’s network. This occurs at least two times a week, a far cry from Six Sigma.

Problems with technology are not limited to online schooling; it occurs quite often in banking, hospital records, insurance companies, automobile factories, power grids, social media to name a few. Yesterday I was in an optical shop for new glasses. They couldn’t access my electronic prescription and insurance information because their system was down.

The fragility of technology leaks into the physical world as well. Once I was inside the Costco stores when I had to use their toilet. While washing my hands, the faucet suddenly stopped working. I looked for the old-fashioned faucet handles. There was none there. Their entire hydraulic system including the flush was controlled electronically. They don’t work when the system stops working.

Approximately, two years ago, I purchased a state-of-the-art computer that also works as a tablet. Due to my fascination with technology, I decided to use biometric identification instead of using a traditional password. Every time I turned on the computer, I gazed at the camera. It refused to recognize me.I realize, based on my experiences, that we shouldn’t depend on technology entirely. I cannot do any mental math anymore. I double-check simple additions with the help of a calculator. I am totally rudderless without a global positioning system (GPS). I worry about dementia quite often because I hardly exercise my faculties for day-to-day functions. I also worry about what will happen to us if our satellites are destroyed by our enemies or are damaged by a sudden burst of the solar storm? We would certainly go back to the early nineteenth century. The problem is that we are no longer cognitively and physically equipped to lead an archaic life. Will our grandchildren be able to function without electronic gadgets? These thoughts worry me.

The problems are more far-reaching than that. Imagine, our first responders will not have access to their location systems. Delays in the ground and air traffic will begin to develop. Systems that depend on GPS time stamps — ATMs, power grids, computer-data, and cell-phone networks — will begin to fail; our planes and ships will go astray. We’ll lose the capability to defend ourselves and operate drones against our enemies. The internet will collapse. We’ll be crippled and will not know how to follow daily routines.

Yes, we must embrace technology, but in a manageable way. We must have a backup system that should include learning math the old-fashioned way, being skilled enough to switch to the analog system, and learn basic survival skills. We should always keep in mind that technology, after all, is fragile.

“The Mayhem of May” by Anil Shrivastava ‘Musafir’

I’ll call this the mayhem of May. I have been getting news about people I knew in India dying of COVID. One of our friend’s brother and his wife’s brother both died of COVID on the same day in different parts of India. It is heart-wrenching.

Medical facilities in India are already limited and inadequate and now it’s overwhelmed with people suffering from COVID-19. One of my friends who just returned from India stayed there with a family where both the husband and the wife are medical doctors. According to my friend, the couple return home every day late in the night enervated after attending to dying patients. Then they receive phone calls from their relatives and friends all night begging and crying for hospital beds and oxygen cylinders. Scenes like this and far worse – are playing out hundreds of thousands of times every day across India.

“We are in a helpless state,” the couple told my friend. Then they broke into tears. My friend left India and came home on the next available flight. That was the least he could do for the couple.

This is what it’s like to be in India at this time. A couple of factors are responsible for the second wave that India is facing now. A denial to wear the mask and a lack of social distancing are major reasons for the surge. The last time when the sense of COVID-19 was down, people started attending weddings, political rallies, and religious ceremonies. They turned out to be super-spreaders

Secondly, the major cities of India are overpopulated and their amenities are busting at their seams. As an example, in Mumbai – home to more than 20 million people, more than 40 percent of them live in overcrowded slums where disease can spread like a wildfire.

As a consolation, the countryside in India is much better off than the cities. I regularly talk to a couple of folks in my ancestral village. Not a single case of COVID has been traced there. The states in India need to create employment opportunities for the natives. For example, the laborers from the state of Bihar emigrate to major metropolitan cities of India such as Kolkata, Bengaluru, Delhi, and Mumbai in search of per diem wages to avoid starvation at home.

There are always lessons to be learned from any kind of disaster. It is essential now, more than ever before, that public health plans be improved in India. There is no sense going to the moon or Mars; building the tallest statues and largest stadia or making comparisons with other countries to look better than them statistically. Taking care of its own citizens should be more important than anything else.

The good news is that an array of mathematical models predict that India’s surge will peak sometime towards the end of May. Hopefully, the governments in India will learn the lesson from the Mayhem of May and will work towards a better health care system and regional employment opportunities for their citizens.

Out of My Mind: The Cardigan” by Anil Shrivastava ‘Musafir”

I was gathering clothes for donation when I found a dark brown cardigan hanging in the corner of my closet. “Embrace me! Wrap me around yourself,” it seemed to yell at me. I had bought that front-open sweater years ago but had never donned that on purpose.

Cardigans remind me of Mr. Rogers of “Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood” fame. He was handsome and he certainly gave off a feeling of possessing a distinguished personality, but I had no desire to look like him. He reminded me of someone phlegmatic and filled with ennui. It’s not only Mr. Rogers, most men who don cardigans look dull, effete, and enervated. Of course, that’s my personal point of view which may not be true. Regardless, I avoid looking grumpy or ascetic at all costs.

Winters in Michigan are long, dark, and cold which can definitely affect one’s mood unless someone is in winter sports or ice fishing. On top of that, I can’t imagine adding to my miseries by putting on a cardigan.It’s not that I hate winter but I don’t want it to dominate over me either. I love the cold air. That keeps us free of insects, snakes, and mosquitos. I love to dress up in hats, jackets and boots. I love sitting by the fireplace enjoying warm snacks, drinks, and a good read. I do like looking at the golden sunshine falling on snow through my patio windows, but when one day turns into many without sunshine, I get into the winter blues.

I turn the lights on every day for hours. It brightens the room and my mood. I also sit in my bright sunroom with the heater on full blast with a cover over me. That’s a blessing. I also go to the gym for walking. it not only gives me a place to exercise but it provides a social life. Interacting with other people keeps me from becoming isolated.

Well, I decided to put on the green cardigan one last time before saying a final goodbye. As soon as I looked in the mirror, my wife remarked, “It looks good on you. You look distinguished just like Mr. Rogers.”

That was it. I didn’t want to look distinguished like Mr. Rogers. Suddenly, I rushed to the mall for buying a new sweater. That turned my gray mood into a little sunshine.

America’s Losing Streak” by Anil Shrivastava ‘Musafir’

While the United States of America is considered as the only superpower that exists today, the fact remains that it hasn’t won wars since WW II (in 1945). Only the Gulf War in 1991 under the leadership of George W H Bush can be called a clear success. The Korean War was inconclusive, Vietnam was a loss costing 58,000 Americans and millions of Vietnamese lives. Both Iraq and Afghanistan wars proved to be futile with a price tag of 5 trillion dollars and 7,000 American lives.

In addition, the U.S. has failed to change regimes in Cuba and Venezuela in its own backyard despite trying to do so for decades. We all know about the failed invasion of The Bay of Pigs in 1961. In this century alone, the U.S. has miserably failed to contain, China, North Korea, and Iran while those countries keep on sticking the thumb in the U.S.A.’s eye.

There can be many reasons for the U.S.’s failure in this regard. First and foremost, the recent U.S. presidents with the exception of George W H Bush (41st) have been novices, unready, and without enough experience for the rigor of their office compared to their counterparts in other countries who are seasoned and have been there for decades. The U.S. leadership is no match to them when it comes to strategic judgment. In the United States, a peanut farmer or a builder can suddenly become the Commander-in-chief to face the seasoned veterans of China, Russia, or even North Korea.

Secondly, the U.S. is considered an undependable partner even by its own allies such as Turkey and Germany. Its foreign policy takes a drastic change after a new president is sworn in. Mr. Biden’s rushed reversal of Trump’s policies with his executive orders is a recent example of such a move. Much of the rest of the world seems visibly queasy at the prospect of America’s U-turn. Just the other day, the U.S navy violated India’s sovereignty by carrying out a Freedom of Navigation operation west of Lakshadweep Islands, inside India’s exclusive economic zone, without requesting India’s prior consent. This is just one example of America’s mood swing. By the way, India never wholeheartedly trusted America except for a brief period during the Modi-Trump bromance between 2016 and 2020. In contrast to that, Russia has always been there for India as a reliable partner.

This vitality is uncommon when we examine Russia, China, Germany, North Korea to name a few. Much of the world, however, is not accustomed to such volatility. “The rest of Western Europe has seen numerous changes in those who hold the reins of power, but oscillations in governance have generally stayed within a relatively narrow political spectrum.” Feffer, John (2021 February 8) “America: The Unreliable Superpower” Foreign Policy in Focus.

Central Asia and the Middle East including Iran are opening up to engagement with China. These countries are already making business and strategic partnerships with China which is viewed by them as more stable and trustworthy. Saudi Arabia is now getting closer to Russia. Both Saudi Arabia and India recently bought an advanced Russian missile system to the dismay of the United States.

Last but not the least, many a time the U.S. wages wars on false pretenses. For example, President Johnson received congressional authorization in 1964 to begin the massive escalation in Vietnam in response to an alleged attack by the North Vietnamese on an American ship in the Gulf of Tonkin. It turned out to be a false assumption. Similarly, in 2001, Iraq was falsely accused of amassing weapons of mass destruction (WMD). It turned out that Iraq didn’t possess WMDs and had not collaborated to destroy the World Trade Center in 2001. Oops!

The problem is that the U.S. doesn’t seem to learn from its past mistakes. In Afghanistan and Iraq, the American military repeated many of the mistakes it made in Vietnam. “The U.S. ignores the historical framework within which insurgencies take place, to appreciate the cultural and political factors of other nations and people, and to understand warfare beyond the limited confines of tactics and operations. The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan may have been ill-advised, but both were winnable with the right strategy. As for Libya, the United States and its allies lost by default when they walked off the playing field.” (Source: “Mansoor, Peter R (2016, March 10)” Why Can’t America Win Its Wars?” Hoover Institution)

Whatever be the reason it all boils down to leadership at the top. “The buck stops here.” It is time for America to learn from its past mistakes and make correct decisions in the future. Although times have changed, the David and Goliath story still holds true today.

Humor: “Party Tonight” by Musafir

After more than a year of quarantine, I am tired of my ascetic life. I don’t dress up. I don’t party. All I do is watch the grass grow from my window. A couple of months ago my wife told me, “Honey, there is a white dog walking in our front yard.” Today I corrected her that the dog she saw two months ago was actually brown not white. That’s the status of our relationship. We have been cooped up with each other for the longest time.

      Like the spring after a long winter, my dear friend Rowdy called me this morning to invite me to celebrate his divorce from Coo Coo.

      “Party now? Aren’t you afraid of COVID? I asked.

      “Hey, Buddy! If not now then when? Folks our age don’t last very long. Come on, have some fun, man!” Rowdy replied.

That was quite enticing. It’s been more than a year since I attended a party, shook hands, combed hair, shaved, laughed and put a suit on. As a matter of fact, I have forgotten how to put a knot in my tie. I’ve completely forgotten what to do on such stellar occasions.

That being said, when I think about parties, it seems like they happened to someone else in another century. I remember how deeply in love Rowdy and Coo Coo were. They had invited us for their engagement but decided to marry each other instead. Unluckily, the twenty-four-seven cohabitation due to COVID made them tired of each other. I don’t want that to happen to us, so I accepted Rowdy’s invitation for the greater good of humanity.

I am not happy the pandemic is lasting this long, but it doesn’t seem fair that people get constrained by COVID and miss such momentous occasions as a divorce. After all, divorces don’t happen every day. Most of us go through divorces only once or maybe twice during our lifetime.

I never thought the comment “I wouldn’t touch them with a six-foot pole” would become a national policy, but here we are! I know now why did the chicken cross the road? Because the chicken behind it didn’t know how to socially distance properly. For me “weather today” has become the room temperature inside my house. I really want to go out and experience how the weather used to be outside.

People have been reported to organize parties pretending to be aliens and zombies. There are no laws stopping them from having parties yet. A group of merry-makers was caught carrying fake vaccination cards then thumbing nose at police when they arrived.

I am tired of attending Zoom chats and being called a Zoomer. I need to press some flesh. “I’m gonna be where the lights are shinin’ on me like a rhinestone cowboy” (Glen Campbell). I am going to the party tonight.

“One-party Rule” by Anil Shrivastava ‘Musafir’

Democracy can only survive while it has strong opposition. Many of us seem to have forgotten this concept since the last U.S election was held in November 2020.

“No government can be long secure without a formidable opposition” (Benjamin Disraeli).

We know enough about a one-party rule in countries like China, North Korea, and Vietnam to understand the perils of living in such a society. The leaders of the party in those countries abuse the power of office without a check. There is a saying,

“Absolute power corrupts absolutely” (Lord Acton).

People with opposing voices in those countries are punished or treated as pariahs. In my view, that’s not the way democracies ought to operate. We have seen examples of this in Nazi Germany when Hitler, without effective opposition, displayed signs of fascism.

Countries with healthy democracies such as the U.S., the United Kingdom, India, South Korea, Australia, and Canada have strong opposition parties or a two-party system, at least. Since its inception, democracy in the United States has thrived on this principle. The two-party system has permitted wider and more diverse viewpoints in government and has encouraged dominant parties to make deals with weaker parties to form winning coalitions. The first two-party system consisting of the Federalist Party and the Democratic-Republican Party took effect in 1789. Since the 1850s, there have been two major parties in the U.S., the Democratic Party, and the Republican Party.

I have voted for both the Democrats and the Republicans in the past, but now I am afraid to do so lest I should be deemed as a reactionary or undesirable by my own folks and friends. That’s the way things are today. There are dangerous signs to indicate that the United States is moving towards a one-party nation run by the Democrats alone. The Democrats are branding all Republicans as racists, insurgents, and dividers. They have a serious plan to eradicate Republicans from the Red states by opening the border and settling the migrants (who traditionally vote for the Democrats) there. The coastal states with the exception of Florida and the Carolinas are already one-party states. In order to achieve the goal, the Democrats are planning to get rid of the electoral college; legislative filibuster — eliminating the Senate minority’s ability to delay or block legislation and they want to pack the court to make the conservative judges voiceless. They also want to make the District of Columbia a state, creating two more safe Democratic Senate seats. They could also admit Puerto Rico, adding two more seats. This would make it nearly impossible for the Republicans to regain the majority.

There was a time when both the Democrats and the Republicans worked towards the betterment of the country despite differences of principles and opinions. No one tried to eliminate the other. Harry S Truman was faced with an open Supreme Court seat in 1945. While naming a Democrat to the seat likely would have been approved, Truman broke with his party and instead chose Republican Ohio Sen. Harold Burton for the Court .

The vision of President Lyndon B. Johnson, the Great Society program was one of the most ambitious agendas in American history. Congress answered the president’s call to action and enacted, with some adjustments, many of Johnson’s recommendations.

When the Soviet Union launched the first man-made satellite, Sputnik 1, into space on October 4, 1957, the U.S. found itself with only a fledgling space program. President Dwight D. Eisenhower took immediate action with bipartisanship support. As a result, NASA was conceived.

Republican President George W. Bush, following up on campaign promise, introduced a blueprint of “No Child Left Behind” to Congress. This was supported by Republican Rep. John Boehner and Sen. Judd Gregg and Democrat Rep. George Miller. Sen. Edward Kennedy, one of the most outspoken critics of the president, lent his name to the bill.

President Obama extended the Bush-era tax cuts to promote bipartisanship. While Obama did not agree to all aspects of the deal, he described it as “a package that will protect the middle class, grow our economy, and create jobs for the American people”(Bipartisan Policy Center).

Now things are different. The Democratic party, in unison with business oligarchs and the Hollywood crowd, is marching to a different beat. If you wrote a book stating that homosexuality was more a result of nurture than nature or questioned the working of Planned Parenthood, you’d not be published. On top of that, social media would ban you for life and the employers would blacklist you. If you planned to give a conservative talk in a university or a public library, you would be shouted down and banned for life. Disagree? Try once.

Should Facebook be reading this article, I may be banned for life. If that happened, “hey nice to know ya!”