Tuesday, January 21, 2020

ABOUT BLACK CREATIVITY

Beneath the Spin*Eric L. Wattree

EXCELLENCE IS THE KEY TO BLACK EQUALITY

ABOUT BLACK CREATIVITY


Thank you, Cartrell, for both, your kind words, and for inspiring this article. I’m truly flattered by your response to my comments, but complete honesty demands that I reluctantly admit that I'm no one special, nor am I a person of exceptional intelligence. The fact is, in terms of intelligence, when I was growing up I was somewhere around the middle of the pack among my friends. I just got lucky in stumbling upon something that I enjoyed doing, so I put a lot of effort into it. But the truth is, writing and assessing reality are the only two things in life that I do relatively well, so those are the things in which I've devoted my life. I specialize in observing life, and writing about what I've observed. I enjoy that like many men enjoy watching a sporting event. 
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Due to that passion I’ve observed many young Black people who truly are brilliant, and who have a trove of natural abilities that are much more pronounced than my own, and I'm proud to claim many of my own children among them. So I’ve dedicated my life to encouraging these young people to purposely focus on what I only stumbled upon by accident. I’m on a constant mission to try to get them to see what I see. Many of these young people are doing just the opposite of what they should be doing. These exceptionally gifted young people should be singularly focused on developing their intellect instead of wasting their time trying to fit in with the crowd.They should be striving to become unique and independent thinkers, instead of trying to be one of the many. 
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I try to get them to understand that Black people don’t have to go hat-in-hand begging the White man for a blue-collar job. If they’d just take the time to develop their unique skills, they could make those skills marketable and sought-after. I've been relatively successful in that regard when it comes to my own children and grandchildren, so now I've focused my attention on the Black community as a whole.
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I learned to do legal research and brief writing, for example, and that allowed me to make a killing by simply doing what I love most, writing. Yeah, I had a 9-to-5, but only so I would have a guaranteed income. But on the side I did legal research and brief writing for attorneys, and as a result, my son and daughter never had to want for a thing throughout their entire childhood. I charged the attorneys a third of their fees to work on a case – and they were happy to give it to me, because, as a former hood rat, I understood the key to winning cases, something they didn't always learn in law school.
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While the various law schools taught them to be competent in interpreting the law, the key to winning legal cases is grounded in psychology. Instead of going out of your way to try to sound learned and scholarly, you should stay away from dry legalese whenever possible and focus on making the judge as upset with the opposition as you are.
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I loved having that kind of impact on people. It gave me a sense of power. It’s like being a screenwriter, but instead of writing fiction, you're using factual information as the basis for your plot, and instead of manipulating fictional characters, you're having an impact on the lives of real people. By using that technique - along with solid legal research and a little hyperbole and gaslighting - in many cases the judge would walk into the courtroom as mad at the other side as I was. In fact, in many cases when the opposition’s attorney would read the brief, that alone, would cause them to want to settle. 

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That’s why attorneys didn’t mind paying me, because they got two-thirds of the fees, and I did all the work. But I didn't mind that a bit. While I'd never tell them, I enjoyed it so much I would have almost done it for free, because it allowed me to walk out of that courtroom not merely saying, but knowing, "I am somebody!" It made me immune to feeling like I had to prove I was equal, and all my life, it's allowed me to deal with the White establishment eyeball-to-eyeball. When a bigot tries to talk down to me, I don't look down at my feet, I want to know who the hell he think he's talking to.
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Then, one day I was in a courthouse lobby talking with an attorney and he said, "You know, you could start writing appellate briefs and you wouldn't even need us anymore, because you'd never have to step foot into a courtroom." And he was right, but they kept ringing my phone off the hook nevertheless. I did so much legal research that I knew more about the law than they did, so attorneys would call and consult with me over pending cases that I wasn’t even involved in. They'd call and give me the details of a case and ask, “So what do you think, Eric?” If I could answer them off the top of my head I would, but if I couldn't, I'd research the law and try to devise ways of outwitting it through loopholes, and using one law against another - it was like playing chess, the only game I've ever enjoyed. And you know where I learned to do that, and play chess - when I was a teenager going in and out of jail. So all knowledge is valuable, regardless of where it came from.
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In my case, I just happened to stumble upon the joy and skill of writing and research while preparing for various court hearings, and I was highly motivated because I was constantly catching drug cases and it helped me to stay out of jail. It also benefited me when I was on the street, because it got me a lot of respect as a young, jailhouse lawyer. I knew every gang member in the city, regardless of what gang they were in. I’d party with one gang one night, and another on the other side of town the next. I was given a pass, because I wasn’t looked upon as a gangbanger. I was the guy who could help them beat a case - and quite often I did, and for free. Even many old-school criminals would come to me. So it wasn't only a hobby that I enjoyed, but one that's allowed me to reap huge benefits all of my life.
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So I learned my most valuable skill in jail. As the son of a lifelong drug dealer I started getting arrested for selling the drugs I was stealing from him when I was 12 years old, and by the time I was 19 and caught my one and only case as an adult, the judge was so taken with my attempt to represent myself that he sent me into the Marine Corps instead of prison.
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I'll never forget the look on the judge's face when he asked me where was my attorney and I told him, "If it pleases the court, Your Honor, I'd like permission to appear Pro Per (Propria Persona - Latin for represent myself). When I look back on it I have to laugh at my arrogance. Here's this 19-year-old
hood rat with the audacity to try to speak Latin to the court - but I was dead-serious - you would have thought I was Perry Mason. The judge obviously thought it was some kind of joke, but he allowed me to proceed. To his complete surprise, however, I mounted one hell of a defense, but it was based entirely on technicalities in the law. I knew I was headed for the joint, so I already had my toothbrush with me, but I thought, "What the hell," I'll give it a shot.
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I’d been busted dead-bang with a entire briefcase filled with hard drugs - and I mean HARD drugs. So I knew that fact alone was next to impossible to overcome without a huge violation of my civil rights. But unfortunately - for me - the particular cops who busted me were quite professional in the way they went about doing their job, so I could only come up with minor violations of procedure, but nothing serious enough to get the case thrown out. So I was convicted, just as I figured I'd be.

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But when the case was over the judge called a short recess and took me into his chambers. I was prepared for a lecture on how I had thrown away my life, but instead, he offered me a proposition. He was a former Marine Corps office, so he told me that if I would agree to go into the military, he would hold my conviction in abeyance, and if I came out with an Honorable Discharge, he would throw out the conviction. Of course, I jumped at the deal, because that meant I could go home and get high instead of going back to the county jail, because I didn't have a penny for bail money to get me on the street until my sentencing date. So when I walked out of the court onto the streets of downtown Los Angeles I wanted to kiss the ground, because I hadn't planned on seeing the streets again without handcuffs for, at the very least, 5 years. So by developing just one simple skill, the skill of writing, I changed my entire life. It not only kept me out of prison, but exposed me to experiences in life that I otherwise never would have known.
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But what I didn't know was my good fortune was just beginning. The first thing they do when you enter the Marine Corps is test you, and through those battery of tests they identified my predisposition and love for the written word, so they sent me to the Army/Navy Academy to further develop it. Then shortly thereafter, a naval captain (a colonel in the Marine Corps) who was my instructor, got me a job with my battalion commander, and later I became an aide to the Commanding General of Camp Pendleton.

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The general and I became as close as father and son, and his senior officers treated me as such. E
verything that came out of his office, I wrote - including their fitness reports, so the officers used to rely on me for a heads-up on what was coming down the pike. The General was also a classical pianist, and I played saxophone and was heavily into jazz. So on the weekends the General and I would drink his scotch, talk about my life, his life, and listen to music. I introduced him to the music of Bud Powell, Thelonious Monk, and Phineas Newborn Jr., and it really turned him out. He also setup private living quarters for me in a room in the rear of the main base library so I could work through the middle of the night without being disturbed, and I lived like a king. I also learned a lot from him, so when I got out of the Marine Corps and went to college, I damn near slept through it - and I made extra money writing term papers in the process.
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So, again, while I’m far from brilliant, and I don’t have many other skills, writing has literally been a lifesaver for me it exposed me to many experiences that I ordinarily wouldn't have had. In addition, it's allowed me to take full advantage of what mind I do have.
Also, by the way, when I got out of the Corps I went before that very same judge who had sent me in (again, in Pro Per), and he expunged my entire criminal record, juvenile and all. So today, I could run for Pope of the Catholic Church.
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Writing also forced me to organize my thinking, pay attention to detail, and become a critical thinker. That helped me tremendously with my education, because the minute they tried to feed me bullshit – and many educators are filled with it – a red flag would immediately go up, and I’d say, "Wait a minute! That doesn’t make sense." From that, I learned to always do my own research, and I also learn to never give priority to anyone else’s ability to think over my own – no matter who it was, or how many letters they had behind their name. While we should always be open to consuming new knowledge, we should also always connect the dot and assess the relevance of that knowledge, for ourselves.
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That came in very handy when they tried to feed me bullshit about how wonderful the White man was. That’s all an illusion that the White establishment tries to convince us to embrace. While the White man has power in this society, he's far from invincible – I proved that by only losing one case in 20 years. But that said, my life experience and common sense has also taught me that you can't profile any entire group of people. You have to assess each individual as an individual. So when I say, "The White man", I don't mean all White men, that's simply ghetto shorthand for "The White establishment". We must always remember that every Black man is not Barack Obama, and every White man is not the Grand Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan.

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Writing and research also helped me to recognize that knowledge is free. As a result, when I got married and had kids, the first thing I did was taught both my son, and daughter to write (or at least, exposed them to it) and they taught all 5 of my grandkids. I’ve gone out of my way to see to it that all of my kids are effective writers, because writing is nothing short of thinking on paper.
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Thus, knowing my attitude toward writing, when my son was in high school he came home very excited about getting an “A” on a term paper. He couldn’t wait to show it to me. But when I looked at it, I immediately recognized that it wasn’t an “A” paper, and I told him as much. My wife and daughter were livid over what they referred to as my "gross insensitivity". They felt that I had thrown ice water on his excitement, and I was discouraging him. But he was about to go to college, so I felt that it was better for me to tell him, and then help him with it, than to just stroke his ego and let some college professor trash him while I was thousands of miles away. And he understood that, because I started by telling him what was excellent about his writing.
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And much of the paper was indeed excellent. It was very well written. That’s obviously what his teacher had graded him on, it’s flow. But he had failed to substantiate many of his assertions, and that’s what I had a problem with. When it came to grammar and style, he had that down. The paper read beautifully, but writing is about much more than just sounding pretty on paper (that’s what I’m also telling his son, and my grandson, Eli, who’s also an excellent writer). Writing is about making an effective point. So what Eric had to learn was very simple - whenever he made an assertion, he should start backing it up in the following sentence, or no later than the following paragraph.
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That’s all writing is about, making statements, and then backing them up with facts. A writer should try to drench the reader in so many facts that his point defies debate. Once he’s done that, then he can go back and make it sound pretty. If he’s only interested in beauty, he should write poetry and stay away from non-fiction. But Lil Eric reminded me of myself. I had the same problem. But when I was in college I had Professor name Immel, and she told me in front of the entire class, “Eric, you say absolutely nothing more eloquently than any student I’ve ever had.” Then she started reading excerpts from my paper and asked, "What, are you such an authority that I'm just suppose to take your word on all this?" She embarrassed the hell out of me. So Lil Eric and I spent the next day reviewing his paper and driving that point home. He needed to understand that he was writing, not rapin’, and there’s a big difference.
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A year or so Later, after he’d gone to college, my wife read one of his papers and said, “Eric, you’re gonna have to stop writing Lil Eric’s papers. That’s not doing him any good.” So I looked at the paper and said, “I didn’t write this, Eric did.” I was flattered that she couldn’t tell the difference, because by that time he had become a much better writer than myself. But she was greatly impressed, and I took that opportunity throw back up in her face how she scolded me when he was in high school.
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Still later, after he had become a federal agent, an FBI agent who he worked with, pointed out how well written one of his reports was. He then asked, “Who helped you with this?” Eric look at him and said, “What do you mean, who helped me with it? I wrote it myself.” And shortly after that, Eric was later given the job of reviewing the reports of all the agents before they went to the U.S. Attorney.

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So the ability to write is a very valuable skill that can allow Black people to not have to depend on the White man to give them a blue-collar job as a handout, and it can also provide them with a sense of personal confidence and independence - and there are many other skills just like it. I've only focused on writing because that just happens to be my thing. But Black people, have many talents and skills, and we have the intellectual creativity that will allow us to standout in life just like we do on Soul Train. 
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But unfortunately, this society works to discourage us, and it tends to pour all of its resources and dedication into convincing us that we're merely beasts of burden, and that it's "uppity" for us to think beyond that.  But don't buy into that bullshit. Be smart and develop your intellect. Then, instead of having to go beg the White man for a job, you can force him to come knocking on your door begging you to apply your intellect on his behalf.
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Thus, whenever you consider your standing in society, you should always remember the following - what we dismissively referred to as soul is nothing less than creative brilliance straining to be unleashed, and it can be applied to any endeavor. We’ve just got to stop Twerkin’ long enough to recognize that fact. 

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Eric L. Wattree
BLACK WRITERS, INTELLECTUALS, AND INDEPENDENT THINKERS
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Religion: It's not that I hate everyone who doesn't look, think, and act like me - it's just that God does. 



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Saturday, January 18, 2020

A BRIEF HISTORY OF REPUBLICAN CORRUPTION

Beneath the Spin*Eric L. Wattree

EXCELLENCE IS THE KEY TO BLACK EQUALITY
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A BRIEF HISTORY OF REPUBLICAN CORRUPTION


The Republican Party specializes in taking a robust Democratic economy and then convincing the people that, with Republican guidance, they can promise even better days ahead. Then once they’re elected into office, they immediately begin to divide the people, loot the economy, undermine the average American, and drag America under a bus. Thereafter, in complete desperation the people turn to the Democratic Party for help, and with that, the cycle repeats itself.
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This economic cycle has been playing itself out every generation for the last hundred years. Every 10 to 15 years, as soon as one generation learn their lesson regarding the Republican Party, another one comes along with dreams of wealth and prosperity to replace them. So the GOP never runs out of victims. Even as we speak, Donald Trump is going around bragging to anyone who will listen regarding all he has done, while taking credit for an economy that he inherited from Barack Obama.
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But in reality, Trump, much like Ronald Reagan, has got us living on a credit card. Things seemed to be relatively stable under Ronald Reagan as well, but once he left office he left the country with a larger debt than all of the presidents that came before him, combined! The same is true of Donald Trump. The $1.8 trillion tax cut that he gave the rich is a debt that’s gonna have to be repaid, and he’s sending the bill directly to the average American in the form of cuts in Social Security, Disability, education, housing, and other safety-net programs.   
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THE GREAT DEPRESSION
History is clear. The Great Depression was brought on by 12 years of Republican governance. Thereafter, Democrat, Franklin Roosevelt repaired the economy with the New Deal and America prospered. Then Nixon came along and brought with him the corruption of Watergate, and later Ronald Reagan flooded our inner cities with crack cocaine, destroyed our industrial base, and made a college education beyond the reach of many average Americans. That not only diminished the nation’s intellectual currency by failing to invest in tens of thousands of brilliant but underdeveloped minds, but at the same time, it also promoted an undemocratic attempt to create a class-based society where the rich continued to prosper, and the average American remained in “his or her place”.
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That’s clearly a failed experiment that the conservatives refuse to give up. Conservatives have always been known for walking around with flag pins in their lapels and spewing their "bone-spur" brand of patriotism. Going all the way back to the very founding of this nation they’ve always used false patriotism and deception as weapons to promote a self-serving agenda to undermine the interests of the average American.  As a result of that attitude, they have always been the most insidious enemy of American democracy. That’s why when our founding documents speak of American enemies it uses the phrase, “Both foreign and domestic.”
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When conservatives first arrived on these shores, they brought with them the European notion of class distinction. They have always suffered from the distinctly undemocratic attitude that the only inherent value of the average American is as servants to cater to the whims of the upper class. Alexander Hamilton, one of this nation’s conservative founding fathers, believed that the rich and "wellborn" should be given a permanent share in government. He said:
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“All communities divide themselves into the few and the many. The first are the rich and wellborn, the other the mass of the people…. The people are turbulent and changing; they seldom judge or determine right. Give therefore to the first class a distinct, permanent share in government. They will check the unsteadiness of the second, and as they cannot receive any advantage by a change, they therefore will ever maintain good government.”
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Hamilton supported a lifetime appointment of the President (after being selected by congress, instead of the people). Can you just imagine that, Donald Trump FOR LIFE!!!?  But America dodged that bullet during the Federalist Convention that took place between May 14 and September 17, 1787.
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Since most of the founding fathers came to America to escape the aristocratic class system in Europe, Hamilton’s desire to preserve the class

system was resoundingly defeated in favor of an unfettered democracy, but that didn’t mean that people of Hamilton’s point of view would quietly go away. Instead, they became the conservative coalition, and lowered their profile as blatant aristocrats, but continued to pursue their agenda by using their wealth, power, and various other strategies to divide the people to achieve their agenda, and that’s what we see today.  That accounts for why conservatives tend to be specialists in obstructionism and division, and why the American people ALWAYS suffer under conservative governance.
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While a class structured society may bring comfort and contentment to the monied class, the damage it’s doing to the nation as a whole can be clearly observed by simply assessing the relative intellectual acuity and quality of leadership of Barack Obama as oppose to Donald Trump. Wealth and intelligence are not synonymous. The nation needs brainpower to prosper, not merely wealth, and Donald Trump is currently a poster child for the proposition that money without brains is a waste.
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But I’m jumping ahead of myself.  Not long after Ronald Reagan, George W. Bush came along. Bush ignored warnings of the pending 911 attack, then lied us into Iraq and created the current destabilization of the Middle East. He also brought us to the brink of a second Great Depression. But in that regard, and following a now familiar pattern, Democrat, Barack Obama came in to clean up the Republican mess.
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Now we have Donald Trump, undoubtedly the most lying and incompetent
president in the history of the United States - and worse, he’s in treasonous lockstep with the Russians. But in spite of that, the GOP is currently leaving no stone unturned to coverup his gross corruption, incompetence, and criminality in pursuit of their own self-interest. .
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That’s the problem with giving wealth priority over character and intelligence. Neither Donald Trump nor the Republican Party have either the character or intelligence to understand the importance of placing the nation’s interest above their own. It’s exactly that lack of understanding that led to Trump’s impeachment – and it would lead to his removal from office if the Republican senate wasn’t so irresponsibly corrupt.
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So once again, as they’ve shown repeatedly over the past one hundred years, instead of adhering to their oath of office, and their oath to be impartial jurors during Trump’s impeachment, in a desperate attempt to corrupt the system for their own self-interest the Republican Party is going to do any, and everything possible to see to it that the American people never learn all the facts regarding Trump's criminality in this impeachment case. That alone undoubtedly makes the Republican Party the domestic enemy of the American people, and as such, they should all be swept out of office and relegated to the garbage heap of American history.
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Eric L. Wattree
Http://wattree.blogspot.com
Ewattree@Gmail.com
BLACK WRITERS, INTELLECTUALS, AND INDEPENDENT THINKERS
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Religion: It's not that I hate everyone who doesn't look, think, and act like me - it's just that God does. 

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Monday, January 13, 2020

CHASING THE DOLLAR

Beneath the Spin*Eric L. Wattree

EXCELLENCE IS THE KEY TO BLACK EQUALITY
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CHASING THE DOLLAR

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Gustavo Escanelle  said, “Prince [Harry] had everything, castle, title, money, fame, what else could go wrong? We shall see, bad call on his part.”
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In response, I don't think so, Gustavo. You left out the most important thing in life - happiness. Prince Harry has just proven himself to be a REAL prince. I know that I look at him a lot differently, because he's proven himself to have character and class. On the other hand, all the stuff you listed are purely superficial. What Prince Harry has done is the stuff that fairytales are made of. This is a real-life Prince Charming, sweeping his Black princess off her feet, saying to hell with what anyone thinks, and riding off into the sunset with the love of his life. Nothing could be more beautiful.
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This is one of those moments in world history that will serve as a metaphor for what all of our lives should be, and I guarantee you that a movie is going to be made about this episode of love and devotion, and for centuries to come, people will be talking about this beautiful love story.  From this day forward, Prince Harry will always be remembered as the world’s most admired prince, because he’s carried himself like one.

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And with regard to what he’s given up, he’s gained much more than he’s lost. I've spent all of my adult life loving my family and pursuing knowledge and happiness. As a result, I've developed skills that people are willing to pay me to utilize on their behalf. Attorneys call me and offer to share a third of their fees to do legal research and brief writing for them, and I do many other things. I don't even know how much money I have in the bank. I received a $20,000 check last week and threw it in a filing cabinet, because as long as when I need money the ATM spits out the cash, it doesn't matter how much I have in the bank. But today is my daughter birthday, so what matters is, I can put a smile on her face, and my granddaughter is a Jackson State, and I can help her to focus on studying to become a doctor instead of worrying about money. 


People waste their entire lives chasing a dollar. That keeps them from enjoying their lives and family in the moment, and in the end it doesn't make them any happier, unless their idea of happiness is trying to impress others with what they can buy. But in the final analysis, while they can go out and buy a mansion, they can only live in one room at a time. So the only way they're really gonna be happy is to make themselves better and more knowledgeable than they were yesterday. We should cut out trying to impress all the middle-men and impress ourselves. That's who we're really after in the first place. Everything we do - including trying to impress others - we do to try to make ourselves feel better about who you are.
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Once, after a case came in, I had my daughter take me to a car lot and I bought a brand-new Escalade truck, in cash (for the most part). But I wasn't any happier when I drove off in it than I was when we entered the car lot. That taught me a valuable lesson in life, and I never forgot it. Yeah, all of my "friends" were impressed by my pearl white Esclade, but they weren't doin' shit for me, so why should I care about trying to impress them? All it did was kept phonies grinnin' in my face. I needed to be trying to impress myself - and that's exactly what I do today. 
 
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I learned that we should simply gather enough money to be comfortable and not have to live from hand to mouth. Thereafter, we should focus on intellectual development and being happy. Because life flies by, and if we spend it chasing a dollar, we'll look back one day and realize that we’ve never taken the time to enjoy the life we’ve been given. So if you really want to enjoy your life, take the time to enjoy it, and not spend all your money trying to live a lie to impress others. Because in time, the money you save just living a casual and laid-back life instead of trying to impress others can, in itself, make you rich. 
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And in that regard, who do you think is happiest, Donald Trump, with all of his alleged money, or Barack Obama? Think about that. Trump would do anything to be as brilliant, and as loved and respected as Obama, that's why he's always trying to compare himself to him. But he'll never be able to compete with Obama, because Barack has spent his entire life perfecting himself. So the difference between him and Dubious Donald is hugely apparent. In fact, if Michelle decided to run for president, Trump wouldn't have a chance, because even many Republicans would vote to get knowledge, common sense, and class back into the White House. Because NOTHING impresses people like knowledge and character - not even money – and Prince Harry has clearly demonstrated that he has both. So I wish him, his son, and his beautiful princess, much happiness.
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Eric L. Wattree
Http://wattree.blogspot.com
Ewattree@Gmail.com
BLACK WRITERS, INTELLECTUALS, AND INDEPENDENT THINKERS
.
Religion: It's not that I hate everyone who doesn't look, think, and act like me - it's just that God does. 


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Wednesday, January 08, 2020

ECHOS OF AN ERA: JACKIE MCLEAN

Beneath the Spin*Eric L. Wattree

EXCELLENCE IS THE KEY TO BLACK EQUALITY
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JACKIE McLEAN: A STORY THAT NEEDS TO BE TOLD

On March 31, 2006 the great Jackie McLean quietly slipped into the annals of American history. Born on May 17, 1932, Jackie was destined to become one of the greatest innovators on the alto saxophone, and in jazz, that the world has ever known. He was a direct musical descendant of the illustrious Charles “Yardbird” Parker, Bebopper-in-chief. In fact, Bird was there to witness his young protégé’s first recording date with yet another jazz giant, Miles Dewey Davis. Jackie, at the tender age of 19, was quite nervous during that session, but Bird took the time to give him the same advice that he’d given Miles in his youth, “Just calm down and do what you do.” Well, just like Miles before him, Jackie did calm down, and a new era in jazz had begun.
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History will someday look back upon all these men with at least as much reverence as we now look upon Beethoven, Mozart and the like. But while these men stand as towering monuments to the creative genius within our culture, the death of Jackie McLean passed without so much as a whimper within the Black community. There was no urgency in the Black community to hand down the legacy of this great musician to our now culturally deprived younger generation. But fortunately, jazz is also a part of American culture, so ironically, it was primarily the White community that both recognized and noted the significance of Jackie’s death. So allow me to take a moment to swallow my pride and say . . . Thank God for the White man!
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Failure to acknowledge the best in ourselves is a serious problem within the Black community, and I attribute it directly to our failure to assess the impact of integration on Black culture. During the civil rights movement we became so caught up with trying to fit into the larger society that we lost ourselves in the process. And while we were busy running away from our identity, White scholars were furiously setting up Ph.D. Programs at universities all over the world studying every facet of the very cultural geniuses that we began to ignore. We’ve become so intent on chasing the frivolous, that we’re oblivious to everything of real value within our culture.
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There’s an old saying that rings particularly true in our current condition--“Be careful what you ask for, because you just might get it.” Well, We’ve got it. There was a time when we had our values in tact, solid communities, and knew who we were as a people, but we had one glaring weakness--we yearned to live large like White folks. True, we didn’t have much, but what we did have was rich in culture. Now many of us have achieved the dream of living large, but at what cost—our values have been destroyed, we have no sense of community, and we’re now getting over by imitating the world’s imitation of who we use to be. At the same time, White kids, and kids of other nationalities are sitting in universities and music conservatories around the world learning more about the music of Bird, Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Jackie McLean, and Black culture in general, than most Black people will ever know.
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Now, this is not an indictment against the White man, after all, it’s not his fault that we don’t have the insight to recognize and pass down our own cultural legacy--in fact, we owe him a debt of gratitude, because it now falls on him to preserve for posterity that which is best in us. The fact is, we’re fortunate he’s around, but it’s a damn shame that we have to rely on someone else to do what we should be doing for ourselves.
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Yes, many of us now have more and are living better than we’ve ever lived before, but again, at what price? Ask yourself, where are the Charlie Parkers, and Miles Davis’, and Marvin Gays of today? Where is the next Aretha, or Al Green? The fact is, they no longer exist, because we no longer exist—at least, as we once were. We’ve lost that urge to say, I’m going to study these scales, chords, and progressions, and demonstrate to the world that I can be one of the greatest musicians who ever lived. Now, instead of seeking excellence, we settle for the dollar, and instead of making records that will speak to eternity, we're scratchin’ them and saying “yo, yo, yo.” We no longer have the time to learn, because “we’ve got to keep it real”— which is to say, ignorant. And we no longer seek to express the essence of who we are as a people, because we no longer know who we are as a people. At the rate and direction that we're going, before long Black people are going to have the unique distinction of being the only culture in the history of mankind who are going to be incapable of performing the very art that we created.  If we want to hear true jazz we're going to have to leave the community and go have others play it for us.

As a direct result of this horrible situation, we no longer have heroes, or a story to tell. But here’s a story about when we did have heroes, and how the excellence of one such hero managed to capture the imagination of an impressionable Black child.

WHEN JACKIE'S BAG BECAME MY OWN

When Jackie McLean first appeared on the scene he swung it like nobody else;
He stood all alone, with that bittersweet tone, owing nobody, only himself.
With his furious attack he could take you back to the beauty of Yardbird’s song,
but that solemn moan made it all his own, as burning passion flowed
lush from his horn. Hearing “Love and Hate” made Jazz my fate, joyous anguish

dripped blue from his song. He both smiled and cried and dug deep-down inside, until the innocence of my childhood was gone.
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He took me to a place that had no face, I was so young when I heard his sweet call, but he parted the fog and in no time at all, a child of bebop sprung fully enthralled. As I heard this new sound, and embraced the profound, childish eyes now saw as a man; I stood totally perplexed, but I couldn’t step back, from the hunger of my mind to expand.
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I saw Charlie and Lester, and a smiling young Dexter, as I peered into Jackie’s sweet horn; it was a place that I knew, though I’d never been to, but a place that I now call my home.

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Eric L. Wattree
BLACK WRITERS, INTELLECTUALS, AND INDEPENDENT THINKERS
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Religion: It's not that I hate everyone who doesn't look, think, and act like me - it's just that God does. 


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Tuesday, January 07, 2020

TRUMP’S ACCOUNT IS OVERDRAWN AND HIS BILL’S PAST DUE

Beneath the Spin*Eric L. Wattree

EXCELLENCE IS THE KEY TO BLACK EQUALITY
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TRUMP’S ACCOUNT IS OVERDRAWN AND HIS BILL’S PAST DUE

YOU SAID, $80 MILLION?
Well, Donnie, it’s been a long time coming, but it’s time to pay the piper. You’ve finally written a check that all your conniving bullshit can’t cover.

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You thought you were so powerful that you could get away with anything. But the $80 million that the Ayatollah just put on your head has changed all that, because there’s nothing the United States government can do to protect you from that action. You and your family can never feel free to travel safely again. In fact, you can never feel safe, and free from fear, ever again. That’s a hell of a price to pay to try to look like Mr. Big Stuff.
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By the way, I’ve noticed that Ivanka, Jared, and even Melania have been keeping a very low profile of late. That’s because they’ve seen the writing on the wall for months now, but you and the boys are a little on the slow side. 

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From now on you’re gonna have to take the 1St Marine Division with you just to visit Burger King, and you’re gonna have to have someone check your golf balls at Mar-a-Lago to make sure they don’t blow up your section of the county when you strike them.  In fact, as time goes on, who’s gonna want to place their life on the line just to come there and play golf with you in the first place, and who’s gonna want to wear the stigma of staying at a Trump-branded location? It might even be dangerous, so there goes your primary source of income. So while, this might be news to you, you’re in the process of becoming an international pariah. It’s the very worst nightmare of a man who craves attention.
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Our allies already hate your guts. The President of the United States used to be the most honored participant of any gathering of our allies, but you were the summit joke at the G7, so you poked your bottom lip out and went home early. But now it’s gonna be dangerous for our allies to even pretend to like you. Who’s gonna want to stand on a public stage next to you? I know I damn sure wouldn’t. That could very easily get them blown into the next world, and you’re just not worth it.
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And tell me, Donnie, what excuses are you gonna come up with to avoid traveling around the world to various official functions and events in the future? It’s already out there that you’re such a wimp that you avoid going into war zones. Now what are you gonna say about being afraid to leave the United States for fear of getting your brains blown out? That’s not a very macho image. So with all of the United States’ wealth, influence, and firepower, you’ve allowed yourself to be outmaneuvered by the Ayatollah through the simple use of intellect.
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You’ve also been outmaneuvered because you’re a phony and a wimp, and everybody knows it, Donnie. While you may think you're impressive, ignorance, incompetence and cowardice just oozes from your every pore.  I came off the Streets of Los Angeles, so I know a wimp when I see one, and you’re the poster child of wimpism. You can always tell a wimp because they invariably try to act like they’re the baddest thing in town. But in the end, they always fall apart, because they’re so scary and insecure that they can't even pretend to be a real man - that’s why they try to go for bad in the first place. Their charade is a desperate attempt to compensate for their feelings of insecurity. They do things like exonerate war criminals to try to compensate for having been too cowardly to fight for the country themselves. That explains why your administration is so incompetent and is a revolving door - you're too insecure to tolerate real men with the ability to think around you, because they serve to remind you of your limitations.
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So it’s gonna be very interesting – not to mention, entertaining – to watch your saga play itself out. Your supporters already know you’re a cowardly wimp, but your attempt to live-out a lie plays right into their agenda of masking their own cowardice, bigotry, and greed. Thus, you and your supporters are just alike, a collection of America’s most flawed individuals and hypocrites.
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And finally, you better hope they have a “Former Presidential Suite” in the penitentiary, because if they don’t, Big Bubba may not tear you a new ass, but he’s gonna put your old one to damn good use.


Eric L. Wattree
Http://wattree.blogspot.com
Ewattree@Gmail.com
BLACK WRITERS, INTELLECTUALS, AND INDEPENDENT THINKERS
.
Religion: It's not that I hate everyone who doesn't look, think, and act like me - it's just that God does. 

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Monday, January 06, 2020

A CHILD ABUSING BIGOT HUGGER, WARREN DURHAM, FIRED – BUT ONLY CHARGED WITH A MISDEMEANOR!

Beneath the Spin*Eric L. Wattree

EXCELLENCE IS THE KEY TO BLACK EQUALITY
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A CHILD ABUSING BIGOT HUGGER, 
WARREN DURHAM, FIRED – 
BUT ONLY CHARGED WITH A MISDEMEANOR!



Why was this animal placed on PAID leave?  He should have been immediately fired, had his fat, crew-cut-wearin' ass kicked, charged with felony child abuse, and not allowed anywhere near another child. Where's the boy's father!!!? If that would have been my son it would have took Seal Team 7 to pull me off his cowardly fat ass. This was an 11- year- old child this creep was manhandling!
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The incident occurred in the Vance County school district in Henderson, North Carolina. The Raleigh News & Observer reported District Attorney Mike Waters said 'by the grace of God' the student did not suffer severe enough injuries for his office to pursue felony charges.”
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District Attorney Waters’ comment sounds suspiciously self-serving, since the more severe the crime the more severe the monetary damages the school district and the local government is exposed to. So, “By the grace of God”, indeed. The gross hypocrisy inherent in such a disingenuous statement alone is enough to make one want to throw up. It sounds like he’s trying to downplay the seriousness of Durham’s offense in order to limit the school district and local government’s monetary exposure. So the fact is, they're conspiring to victimize the child again.
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Under North Carolina state law, felony injuries are defined as those that “create a risk of death, disfigurement, coma or extreme pain.” Certainly that child experienced, at the very least, extreme pain, and what about the psychological trauma?
WARREN DURHAM
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But Durham was simply fired and charged with misdemeanor child abuse. A misdemeanor! That’s a traffic ticket! That animal could have killed that child. He should be charged with a felony, and it’s certain that he would have been if the child had been White. So he should also be charged with a civil rights violation. What would he have to do for it to constitute a felony, drag the child from the back of his car? If he had been caught on video treating a dog like he treated this child he would have been punished more severely. But, of course, that wasn’t a dog, it was only a Black child.
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BIGOT HUGGERS 
I felt safe in assuming the kid was Black, because there’s no way in hell this Black bigot hugger would have brutally assaulted a White kid like that. The video says it all. There was absolutely no justification for this idiot’s actions. The parents should immediately bring suit against the city and the school district to keep them from trying to sweep this under the rug. Based on the video they can’t lose.
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The entire Black community should be on top of this case like they got behind Rosa Parks. If they're allowed to get away with this it'll be absolutely meaningless for them to blow a Black adult's brains out with impunity. So if the NAACP doesn’t jump all over this and use all of its resources to push this case to its legal limits, there’s no reason for their existence. This animal should do time - BIG TIME!


Eric L. Wattree
Http://wattree.blogspot.com
Ewattree@Gmail.com
BLACK WRITERS, INTELLECTUALS, AND INDEPENDENT THINKERS
.
Religion: It's not that I hate everyone who doesn't look, think, and act like me - it's just that God does. 

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