“Next Year” for Padre Fans is Here

Baseball season is upon us, and the surprise so far is the Padres signing of Manny Machado for 300 million over 10;years. I know no one was more surprised than I was as a Padre fan, but I knew the Padres freed up a boatload of cash in restructuring their loan over the off-season. Strangely enough, they still sit on a bag of cash even after the Machado signing.

There are rumors of a Bryce Harper acquisition, but I doubt it. The Padres were weak at third base, but they are reasonably good in the outfield. The Padre minor league prospects are listed as the best in baseball, and that talent base could ripen this year or next, and they are trade bait right now.

San Diego has a decent lineup, the best stadium in baseball, the best prospects maturing quickly and a horde of cash. They have been lurking in the weeds while eating a lot of Wheaties. They can surprise no one now that they are beefed up with a superstar, but the best is yet to come. They may not be World Series contenders quite yet, but it is obvious they will not be cellar dwellers, either.

This is shaping up as the “Next Year” that Padre fans have waited for.

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New Catholic Sex Abuse

Australia’s Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse has heard testimony for years, and as a consequence the highest Vatican Executive yet charged. Cardinal Pell, the Pope’s Chief Financial Advisor is charged with both passive and active participation in sex abuse in Australia.

The Commission found that 7% of Priests raped or molested thousands of young boys over many years, and that Cardinal Pell did nothing to stem the situation. More recent charges, unspecified personal charges of Cardinal Pell’s personal participation may be pending.

Cardinal Pell has previously testified before the Commission that “enormous mistakes” were made. The Cardinal must appear in Court on charges in July and he is presumed innocent. These are just charges but the Commission has done a serious investigation.

Coming, as it does on the same day as the Pope admits that Nuns were also abused by Priests, the saga of Church sex abuses is becoming an international tragedy.

I spent three years being educated by the Sisters of Divine Providence, and although I am not a Catholic I have nothing but the highest respect for those Nuns. That we boys were locked away from society in a Catholic Military School, in my case for three years, meant we had little to do but feed a rumor mill about our sole Priest and some of the pretty Nuns, but it was simply young boys salacious talk.

It turns out that the previous Pope disbanded an entire Order of Nuns for sexual activities. This Nun sex abuse scandal is just surfacing.

It is high time for the Catholic Church to admit that Priests and Nuns are human.

Infanticide

I am in favor of a woman’s right to an abortion until the woman’s fetus gets a Cognitive Brain Wave. That is the same brain wave we use to determine death of a patient, and when that wave exists it should determine life.

At one extreme of the argument we have the religious argument, primarily from the Catholic Church, that life begins at conception. At the other extreme is the proposed Virginia law, since defeated, that abortion can take place after the birth is completed. Apparently, that is also the case of the existing law in New York today. I can’t see that law passing legal muster under any circumstance. It is infanticide pure and simple, and I can’t understand the state legislature even passing that.

I have always believed that Roe v. Wade was a mistake. It should be a state issue under my reading of the 10th Amendment* since abortion is not in the Constitution, and neither is a Right to Privacy. I don’t object to the content of Roe v. Wade, just the tortuous manner in which it was decided. A Constitutionally aware SCOTUS needs to remedy this, and I believe it will..

I don’t argue with the State of New York’s right to set the limit on abortion, but I disagree with no restriction at all. States can argue where that limit is. I argue a Cognitive Brain Wave. Your opinion may vary….

* “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”

Trump’s Intuition

Appearing before the Senate, the heads of our intelligence services disagreed with President Trump on ISIS, Syria and other matters.

Trump thinks he knows better than the heads of the CIA, FBI, NSA, so obviously those huge and very expensive to maintain agencies are superfluous.

Let us abolish them and rely on Trump’s intuition!

Intolerance Reigns

We are no longer talking tolerance. The culture is physically and obviously becoming more intolerant.

The reaction, nay vast overreaction of some who are triggered by anything that says, quite innocently, “Make America Great Again” is seriously unstable. The words themselves are certainly innocent enough by themselves.

That some individuals, from the Stolen Value American Indian at the Lincoln Memorial, to a Facebook Friend who in debate with me on an issue asked if I owned a MAGA hat, the intolerance is with those who wish to react emotionally to the fact that their candidate lost most unexpectedly in 2016.

Today we are assured by some Hollywood type that MAGA hats are the new KKK hoods, not that Hollywood starlets have any political sway, and a Gym owner asks a long-time patron not to wear his “Trump 2016” T-Shirt to the work out.

The Tolerance League are exposed as intolerant, in spades. I could not bring myself to support either terribly flawed candidates, but I find “Pussy Hats” far more damaging to the culture, and certainly the Detroit Congresswoman’s crass public description of the president.

The Left has lost its cultural mooring. It is behaving as those they condemn…even worse.

Worse than unmoored, the left is unhinged…and has been since the Women’s March. The psychological shock of losing an election they thought was a slam dunk is the root cause of this drama.

Race Day Coming!

Back when I was racing SCCA sports cars, an endurance race was six hours — one hour of racing, four hours of fast driving, then another hour of racing. Just street sports cars, modified of course but driven to the course. Cost was on us, no sponsors.

Don’t bend it, you own it!

Today, it is 24 hours and that’s 24 one-hour sprints! This weekend it is the Rolex 24 of Daytona. This American race can’t compete yet with the 24 Hours Of Le Mans, but it grows each year in International Drivers and cars.

I’ll be glued to the TV this weekend —outside in 75 degree weather. Minerva!

Bring me another iced tea, extra lemon please!

Venezuela is Russia’s Tool

The dance in Venezuela has many more involved exterior players than the US.

Russia has invested $23 billion (they can ill afford) in Venezuela, including partial ownership of five oil fields and strong financial support of the Venezuelan military. There are $17 billion in loans!

Russia wanted to make Venezuela a vassal State on the South American continent, and it looks like its bet has failed.

Of course the game is not yet over. The military has not weighed in, and that is a game breaker. Whomever it sides with has a two possession advantage with two minutes to play. You can bet that several Generals are weighing the odds, with better information than we have.

Hundreds of thousands in the streets is a big signal, as is the fact that the US can move militarily very quickly if it desires. Russia may well shout a lot but, logistically, it is weak.

The current Maduro regime has the political support of Bolivia, Turkey, Russia, and Cuba. That is not a strong hand.

Supporting the new regime are most of the South American nations, Canada and the United States. Mexico is trying to have the center, but there is no center. Venezuela is expecting 10 million % inflation, and that means that a $.50 cup of coffee this month will cost $800 in December. The efforts of the government to print money has been defeated, and the economy has failed.

Three million people have fled to surrounding countries, 18,000 Doctors alone. The crises is coming to a head.