Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Who Will Not Become President: Donald Trump (Reprise)

Back in 2011, I wrote a couple of blog posts under the theme "Who will not become President". I did it as a public service, because, let's face it, someone needs to tell these people there is no way they will ever become President and that's okay. We've only had 44, 43 if you don't count Grover Cleveland twice.

One person I wrote about was Donald Trump. You can read it here:http://manisville.blogspot.com/2011/04/who-will-not-become-president-donald.html.

I'm not bragging, but it was almost prophetic. So much so that you might want to take me along when you buy a lottery ticket.

But here we are again, four years later, and Trump is actually running for President. He is leading the GOP field.

He is real popular with a certain type of Conservative GOP voter. The Conservative GOP voter that hates all other Republicans and would love to kick Mitch McConnell in the gonads. The type of voter that thinks Rush Limbaugh is a RINO.

I've heard it time and again that Trump is a conservative. What, pray tell, is conservative about Donald Trump?

He is not conservative in demeanor. He is not conservative in his morals. He is not conservative in his political thought.

This is a man who is: pro-abortion, pro-government health care (like Canada's) and he has proposed punitive taxation on the wealthy. He has given campaign contributions to Chuck Schumer and Hillary Clinton.

Even a blind pig can find an acorn and Trump has found his acorn: Illegal immigration.

Granted, both political parties truly suck big time when it comes to illegal immigration. They are so out of line with the thinking of the average American, it is really pathetic. Americans do not have a problem with immigrants. Americans have a problem with illegal immigration. Republicans tell us to just shut up while Democrats call us a bigot and tell us to shut up.

Even though Trump has not put forward a plan for stopping the flood of illegal immigration, he has found his market. In the words of  Kevin Williamson of The National Review, "(Trump) makes authoritative grunting sounds in the general direction of the southern border, which apparently is sufficient for one in five Republican voters." 

Trump, a man that got four student deferments and one medical deferment ( for a bone spur in a foot and he's forgotten which foot), doesn't think much of John McCain because McCain was a POW in the Vietnam War. (“He's a war hero because he was captured. I like people that weren't captured, I hate to tell you.”.) This didn't even make sense when Chris Rock said it.
Conservatives, at least  I thought, honor all servicemen and recognize the bravery of those that were tortured so you could learn how to build a casino with your name on it.
In an interview with Frank Luntz at the Family Leadership Summit in Iowa, you could practically hear the gears grinding in his brain as he was talking about religion. His spiritual mentor: Norman Vincent Peale (Inner Trump dialogue: "Surly these hayseeds have heard of him"). When asked if he ever asked for forgiveness, he said, “I am not sure I have. I just go on and try to do a better job from there. I don’t think so.” (Inner Trump: "I've never done anything wrong in my life, but I better at least try to be humble").

He went on to say, “I think if I do something wrong, I think, I just try and make it right. I don’t bring God into that picture. I don’t.”(Inner Trump: "What did Norman say? I'm drawing blanks") He finished this great theological treatise with a flourish: “When I drink my little wine—which is about the only wine I drink—and have my little cracker, I guess that is a form of asking for forgiveness, and I do that as often as possible because I feel cleansed.” (Inner Trump: "That ought to satisfy these clodhoppers")

There is no way Trump can win the Republican nomination, but he can run as a third party and guarantee the election of Hillary Clinton.  If that happens, he might want to ask for forgiveness.

Saturday, July 18, 2015


First of all, let my acknowledge what a privilege it is speak about one of the most unique individuals I have ever met, Wayne Clancy. Pop.
Like a lot of you, I met Pop at the ball field, Oregon Park. There was a little boy there that had a word on back of his jersey. That word was “Knieriem” and I grew up with some Knieriems  in Beverly Hills (the subdivision in East Cobb- not California- I just like saying that to sound pretentious). Sure enough, the little boy was the son of our old pal, Butch Knieriem. I remember seeing this older man at all of the baseball games. He never missed. It was Wayne Clancy. Pop.  He was there rooting for his grandson, Kyle. But the thing about Pop is that he rooted for the other kids as well. You also learned that Pop never met a stranger.
Soon we were in the Kennesaw Mountain High School Football program and that’s where I really became friends with Wayne. From 2003 to 2008.We would sit around watching the practices together.  Pop and I would  chew the fat, gossip and solve the world’s problems. I learned he used to work for a bank and he graduated from The University of Louisville. He loved history and was delighted to learn that I graduated with a degree in history from Kennesaw State.
By the way, I know there are many denominations and faith traditions represented here today and you may not be comfortable doing this, but hey, I’m a Baptist and that’s how we roll.  Raise your hand if Pop Clancy ever told you that you were his hero.  He said to me, “Alan, you’re my hero!" I said, "Thanks, Pop, why is that?"  He said,  "Because you’re the only history major I know that has a job.”
It was at the practices that I learned Pop was a man of faith. He wanted to find a “church home” and decided to come  here to Roswell Street, where he joined the same Sunday School class as my in-laws. Who then in turn invited Pop to our various family functions.  The one meal I will always remember was the one in which my mother in law and Pop started discussing the pleasure of  smoking “rabbit” tobacco. I don't quite know what "rabbit" tobacco is except that it is a good smoke.
I always say the only thing I have going for me is my punctuality, but Pop had me beat. One time, the Mustangs were playing Woodstock  in Woodstock. My wife, Lori, had a company meeting she had to attend and would have to meet me at the game.  I said, “No problem, I’ll just drive my car up there”. Lori then explained to me that if I drove my car to the game, we would have two vehicles at the game. And that would be wrong.
She suggested that I contact Mark Rudder and catch a ride with him because his wife was going to be out of town. I really didn’t want to-I didn’t want to impose and plus, Mark has a different view of time than I do. It is okay with him to arrive at an event ten minutes before the start, unlike an hour before the start like I do.
Well, my wife and I discussed it and we came to a compromise: I would do exactly what she told me to do.  I contacted Mark Rudder to see if I could catch a ride with him to the game.  Mark graciously agreed to take me and as a concession to my obsessive-compulsive disorder, we went up to the game early.  We got to the Woodstock High stadium about 15 minutes before they opened the ticket booth at 6:30.  Because of this, the stadium was locked.
We waited around and finally they opened the ticket booth and the gate. When we got in, we saw one person in the visitor’s stands: Pop. “How long have you been here, Pop?” I asked him.  He said, “I’ve been here since 3:30. They locked the gate on me!”
 In the Baptist Church you will hear that “someone has a heart for young people”. Truth be told most of the time that means the person likes the  “cool kids at the cool lunch table”.   The Varsity.  The King and Queen of the Prom.
I can honestly say to every young person here that Wayne loved you. He loved the Varsity and The Junior Varsity. He didn’t care if you were first string or last string. He didn’t care if you hit a home run or if you struck out. He didn’t care if you scored a touchdown or if you fumbled. He didn’t care if you were pretty. He didn’t care if you were ugly. He didn’t care if you were rich. He didn’t care if you were poor. He didn’t care if your Dad graduated Summa Cum Laude or like me, “Praise Laude”.  He just loved you because you were here and that was a good enough reason for Pop.
You will hear a lot of people talk about Pop and prayer. I have never met a person who prayed as much as Pop. I never met a person who prayed more for young people than Pop.  Pop took prayer very seriously and it would upset him when a kid would do something and make a mistake. I’ve heard him say, more than once “Maybe I wasn’t praying hard enough”. That is hard to believe.
For those of you that don’t know, Pop has 2780 (and counting) Facebook Friends. I can guarantee you that he has prayed for all 2780 friends.  One time I saw “the list” of all of the young people he prayed for.  When I saw it, I think he had about 2500-3000- kids on it. My understanding is that the list grew to include the names of six thousand kids. Off the top of my head, I can name of several kids who had no idea Pop was praying for them and I can see how God has worked through their lives.
I know he prayed for Benjamin William Manis when Ben went to Georgia Southern University, which is the capital of Hedonism in state of Georgia. He prayed Ben through Finance, Accounting, Business Statistics,etc.  (and he wasn’t the only one!) . Ben graduated from Georgia Southern. He has a job, a wife, and is out of the house. If that’s not an answer to prayer, I don’t know what is.
Pop really loved Facebook. He would post devotionals and would make comments on various other posts. One time I posted a verse from my favorite Bob Dylan song, “Every Grain of Sand”. Pop liked this particular post. The verse says:
I gaze into the doorway of temptation’s angry flame
    And every time I pass that way I always hear my name
Then onward in my journey I come to understand
That every hair is numbered like every grain of sand
If there is anyone who knew that every hair is numbered like every grain of sand it was my friend, Wayne Clancy. 

Monday, July 6, 2015

Blame Me

I am a white Southern male. It is all my fault.

What caused this epiphany?

An opinion piece by Michael Lind titled "How The South Skews America" in Politco. The subtitle says, "We'd be less violent, more mobile and in general more normal if not for Dixie".

I wish I could say the article gets better, but it doesn't. Think of all of the non-cool things about America and add a quarter cup of ick and you have The American South.

Mr. Lind says, "The United States would be much less exceptional in general, and in particular more like other English-speaking democracies such as Britain, Canada, Australia and New Zealand were it not for the effects on U.S. politics and culture of the American South."  Yup, if it wasn't for Bubba, we would be just like New Zealand. Yay!

In the next paragraph he sniffs, "I don’t mean this in a good way. A lot of the traits that make the United States exceptional these days are undesirable, like higher violence and less social mobility. Many of these differences can be attributed largely to the South." Like the higher violence that can be found in the iconic Southern city of Chicago, Illinois.

He continues, "As we learned after the slaughter last month in Charleston, S.C., some deluded Southerners still pine for secession from the Union."  And some deluded writers seek to tag an entire region of the country for the act of one sociopath.

Oh, that's not all, not by a long shot. Lind says, "Minus the South, the rest of the U.S. probably would be more like Canada or Australia or Britain or New Zealand—more secular, more socially liberal, more moderate in the tone of its politics and somewhat more generous in social policy. And it would not be as centralized as France or as social democratic as Sweden."   Note the word probably. This just a wild guess that we would be like that blessed Canada.  He really does not know but it is just a hunch since nobody in any another region of the country acts as goofy as a Southerner.

But don't think Lind is Bubba-phobic. He adds this sentence to give him objective credibility: "As a fifth-generation Texan, and a descendant of Southerners back to the 1600s, I don’t want to encourage lurid stereotypes of a monolithic South."  Of course not. Why would we ever doubt you?

He says "The states of the former Confederacy include ethnic minorities like Louisiana Cajuns and Texas Germans, along with African Americans. And the dominant conservatives in the South have always been challenged from within the ranks of the white community by populists, liberals and radicals."  Yeah, we got some cool people like Broudreaux and all of them, but nothing like those Texas Germans.

Lind appears to be a self loathing Bubba.

The rest of the article is a hashing out of so-so to so-what statistics with conclusions that really don't necessarily mean what Lind says they mean. For example, he says, "White Southerners are more likely than white northerners to respond to insults with increased testosterone and aggression, according to social scientists" but doesn't bother to quote the "social scientists" or how the "social scientists" would know. His next sentence:  "According to the FBI in 2012, the South as a region, containing only a quarter of the population, accounted for 40.9 percent of U.S. violent crime."  It would be nice to know actually how much of this "violent" crime was due to insults that increased testosterone and aggression in Bubba and not, oh, just to pick something out of the sky, a drug deal gone bad.

His political history is a little spotty in my opinion. He says, "More recently, the country-club Republican supporters of Barry Goldwater and John Connally have been swamped in Southern Republican parties by a wave of working-class white Southerners who are heirs to paranoid and sullen Dixiecrat conservatism, not sunny and optimistic Goldwater-Reagan conservatism."  One: Barry Goldwater was never a country-club Republican. Two: when John Connally actually ran for something as a Republican, he got a grand total of one delegate to the 1980 Republican Convention. Three: it is hard to imagine a similar opinion piece written in 1964 referring to Goldwater as "sunny".

Basically, Lind believes that The South is one gigantic stick in the mud because of white Southerners. We white Southerners didn't support the transformational Barack Obama because we were clinging to our guns and Bibles. Not that we might have some legitimate disagreements. Are you kidding me? It is because all of us crackers are issued Klan cards at birth.

I wish Lewis Grizzard was around and could have read this article. I wonder what he would say?  "Sumbitch" is my guess.