America, what a country it once was!
During the 1980s there was a Ukrainian immigrant known as Yakov Smirnoff who came to this country to broaden his experience as a standup comic, his catch phrase was “America, what a country!”
My mother brought me to this country from France as a ten-year-old in 1946 because she also thought “what a country!” She had married an American Executive in 1919 and thought that this was a great country even then. She married my father in early 1935. We waited for my father’s return from Auschwitz, the German concentration camp for three years until she received a document from the French Government stating that he had been considered deceased. It took several months and the sale of all the family possessions to pay for tickets for a steamship to bring us to New York. She told me all along what a great country this was. It really was!
We lived in France during World War II, the last war that the United States and its allies can claim as winning. Korea and Vietnam were disasters; so many young men’s lives were lost, for what? Then there was the fiasco of Iraq and Afghanistan, again so many young people men and women lost their limbs and their lives, again to what end?
I consider myself a perennial optimist, so what has happened? Wars and politics! Whichever came first.
The two major political parties are almost at war, with a few radicals from each side. Some members of our government are determined to turn this once great country into a third world used to be. I once quoted parts of a speech by Nikita Khrushchev in 1959. A few citizens are still alive who may remember it but for those who were not alive then, let me once again quote it. Then you can ponder it. I remember it well.
“Your children’s children will live under Communism! You Americans are so gullible. No, you won’t accept Communism outright, but we will keep feeding you small doses of Socialism until you will finally wake up and find that you already have Communism. We won’t have to fight you, we’ll so weaken your economy, until you fall like overripe fruit into our hands.” Another significant quote I bring to you. “We do not have to invade the United States, we will destroy you from within!”
If only this Armchair Pondering could be read by members of congress and particularly by the current President; they are almost all falling into this trap. Look at our inflation statistics; “we will weaken your economy!”
I don’t have to bring up all of the particulars; all we have to do is to look at the television news at the treatment of our veterans, at our failing schools, at the rampant teenage crime statistics, at the one parent families and the neglect of our elderly. Healthcare is no longer much to be proud of either. Now we just treat the symptoms with the latest most expensive pill we can find. Forget diagnosing the root cause of the ailment. I don’t want to paint the medical profession with a broad brush of disdain so, as a disclaimer, I must say that these are opinions of my peer group and not based on scientific research. Those are also opinions that are rampant among the elderly.
Along with the previously enumerated failings there are new challenges. The infamous Covid 19 has killed thousands, I have no idea of the source, but there are speculations that it was manmade and that it can evolve into new unknown viruses. The drug Fontanel is being brought to this country across our “secure” southern border, also killing thousands; now it’s being manufactured in candy-like form to attract and kill our youth.
The country’s leadership is in question with repeated gaffs from the elected President; the latest was of his calling up to the dais Representative Jackie Walorski who had died in a car wreck in August. We know that he has speech writers who should do a little fact checking before releasing their writing; apparently that didn’t happen in this case, totally embarrassing the President. Then, we have a Vice President who touted “our alliance that is strong and enduring with North Korea.” I would think that one of her speech writers hung her out to dry also; shouldn’t an up-to-date, second in line for the Presidency have caught that?
We keep saying, wait until the mid-terms, unfortunately, I don’t see that as our salvation, regardless of which side wins.