Monday, February 04, 2019

What's the Hurry?

FROG HOSPITAL -- February 3, 2019

By Fred Owens

What's the Hurry? Democrats are in a big rush to condemn Howard Schultz because he wants to be the next president. Schultz is on a book tour and giving interviews. He's got some ideas and I would like to spend a week or two thinking about that.

At first glance Schultz steals votes from the Democrats, but are we so sure about that? The case can be made that he steals votes from Trump.

Schultz is Trump without the embarrassment. Schultz is not a bankrupt who sleeps with porn stars. Schultz actually made his own money without a boost from his Daddy. Schultz does not wake up at 5 a.m. and write nasty Tweets. Schultz does not consort with white nationalists. He is not allied with Christian fundamentalists. I'll bet he even reads books.  He has been known to apologize and admits his mistakes.

And if there were only two jobs left in country and you had to pick one -- would you work for Trump or Schultz? ... Well, you could do worse than work for Starbucks.

He is exploiting the gap, that yawning hole in the center between Kamala Harris and Trump, space that is not currently occupied. That's called opportunism. Businessmen like Schultz exploit opportunities and fill unmet needs. That's how they make money. He's the Good Billionaire, although that title is more rightly claimed by Bill Gates and Warren Buffet, whom everybody likes because they give money away and don't run for office.

Not Schultz. He no sooner opened his mouth and they started throwing bricks at him. Look, I am not endorsing this guy, I just say it's early in the game and give him a chance. Schultz is especially despised in Seattle because he used to own the Seattle Sonics but sold that basketball team to Oklahoma City. Oklahoma! Yes, they hate him in Seattle. But do you think the rest of the country cares about that? Ask somebody in Ohio about Howard Schultz and they will say who? Oh, the guy who owns Starbucks. That guy. Yeah, they make a good latte.

So it's not the end of the world if Schultz runs as an independent. It is not a gift for Trump. It is too early to panic.

I got this note from a Frog Hospital reader, a retired nurse who lives in Los Angeles She wrote, "Just heard about Howard Schultz and am thrilled that there actually exists a centrist Independent willing to buck the Democrat machine and run for president."

So I had to think about that.

New Orleans in 1967

In the early winter of 1967, Mark Mikolas and I both dropped out of school at the University of Toronto. We decided to hitchhike to the Haight Ashbury in San Francisco, and do that by way of Mexico City. So we packed our bedrolls and headed for Chicago and stayed with my folks for a few days. They were concerned about this careless journey but they ultimately endorsed it.

We headed south, thumbs out, through Mississippi on the way to New Orleans. Long-haired hippies like us had some trepidations about hitching through Mississippi in 1967. A cop picked us up on the north side of Hattiesburg. He said get in the car, pointing to the back seat. Not you're under arrest, just get in the car, and he meant this in a friendly way. He drove us across Hattiesburg asking questions about our journey, where we were going and where we were from. I guess he wanted to find out if we were communist agitators or just two young white boys out on a lark. I guess he thought we were all right as long as we kept going, and he dropped us off on the south side of town.

The next stop was New Orleans. We got there in the evening and the friend of a friend of a friend who was going to put us up demurred at the opportunity of our company. But he pointed to the park across the street, Audobon Park, and said he would sleep in that field. That sounded all right. We spread out our bedrolls and fell asleep to the sound of barking seals -- because it was right near the zoo.

We slept good that evening and into the morning. At sometime past eight the cops came, driving right across the field and they said get in the car, although this time not smiling. We were under arrest for sleeping in the park. But no handcuffs, just get in the back seat. They said we had to pay a fine of $25 each. We said do you take travelers checks. They said no, but they drove us to a small grocery store nearby. We cashed a fifty dollar check, gave the cops the money and they let us go. That was a little scary. So we left New Orleans right then and there. We decided Mardi Gras just wasn't our party. Onward to Houston, then Laredo and then across the border to Mexico City.
We slept in more than a few parks on that journey, but we always got up at the crack of dawn after that, because if you sleep in til half-past eight you're a bum.

Twenty Years. Frog Hospital is celebrating 20 years of publication in 2019. Over 700 issues and some of them were pretty good. Our Credo has always been tell the truth and don't waste people's time -- meaning keep it interesting. We have done that. And we plan to keep going. Our motto is Onward!

Frog Hospital Blog There are more than 900 posts on the Frog Hospital blog going back through the years. Somebody of these old posts are still vital.  Take a look.

have a good day,


Fred Owens
cell: 360-739-0214

My gardening blog is  Fred Owens
My writing blog is Frog Hospital

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