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Ignore the media hype. Ignore the politicians screaming about doomsday or the virapocalypse. Go by the stats and not the smoke screening them. Look at the big picture. Do your research. Is it worth the elimination of the middle class? Is it worth the demise of small business dreams all across this country? Then what’s next? A new virus rears up, as they do often enough, and we are in social shutdown again? Not by the stats it isn't, and considering they do not know how many more have been affected with no or mild symptoms, but they do know who has died from it much more accurately, and the stats just do not warrant the long-term disaster of us shutting down as a nation.
Who would benefit from this happening to us? Answer that inside your own head & heart. Look up stats on the infected & deaths that come from "the flu" every year. There was never a push for a financial suicide before. Nor from cancer, pneumonia, AIDs and the list goes on. Yet we were never in a world like this one. A world, whether you admit it or not, resembles the movie "Running Man", where the poor live for shows about human suffering, where the rich feed & control with an alliance between Government & Corporations. We are nearly a few steps away from that world! Do you want your life to be that movie? Unless you are Arnold of course.
I am not saying we should not be safe just in case. I am saying, even if we become a masked society for a while, we need to work & spend money. If this drags out for the months as some doomsayers are ranting about, we will not last as a country. If there is no money, there is no money for anyone or anything. If the value of currency is zero, we are done. We can throw it in the streets like in Venezuela. Or play a game of monopoly with it. This event is a small taste of socialism! This is where things like this are given the opportunity to grow! Now don’t get me wrong. I have hibernated this week like many, while others were lucky enough to still be earning a paycheck. Do you truly think that your creditor, mortgage holder & other corporate entities are going to be helping you through this? It is bleak situations such as these where corporations get richer.
I am a small business. My wife is a small business. We know the monthly trial of trying to keep it all together. Many of us do not even have a monthly cushion, while others may have enough for a while. What better way for corporations, and the leaders they grease, to gain reward for small business America basically being offered up. The working person. What about them? If you cannot earn a living, you will not be able to pay to live. Crime will spike. Suicide rates go up. Drug addiction is sometimes a choice over reality. Do we have a choice to make? For every online job that is created, someone loses their job. Some may say, that is just progress. I say progress brought on too fast can hurt and not help. The acceptance of sudden change is not a strong human characteristic. Do we tuck our tails in curl up in a ball? I know I am not! And there are others like me, who are trying to use this time to grow our businesses. To make positive changes. How far the world changes is up to us. Stay motivated. Keep ahold of what is logical and what is right. Ignore the hubbub and get on with life. Stay looking to the future, but do not forget the now! We humans are imaginative and resilient. We are also emotional and destructive. The choices above will set the course of human existence for decades to come! So choose wisely & join me for a whats happening look to the future! Whatshappeningmedia.com has and will be revamping WHE Magazine to offer events we can look forward to. Music scene will have artist contributions from videos to songs on the “Quarantine Zone". The area pages will have videos & virtual tours for you to enjoy, and help stimulate interest in life. There will be fresh columns. There will be pictures & funny videos refreshing daily for your family to enjoy. I invite everyone and all to contribute memories. Uplifting video messages. Or whatever will help us all through this time in our shared lives!
Resource Links - https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/#countries
Look to the Future
By Columnist: Tim Flanagan
Have you ever walked into a room, and the unexpected smell of freshly popped popcorn hits your nose? A very rare hug from a toddler can make your heart smile. Everyone seems angry, and it saddens me. So much bitter! What kind of life is that? Us, the earth and even the cosmos works in checks and balances. So why do we fight against it so? It is disturbing that we find hate easier than love! I am always perked up by the first chill breeze of a fall afternoon. A wintergreen lifesaver will always keep me awake in a long drawn out meeting! It is so easy to miss out on the daily things that bring us comfort, but without them life really has no meaning. The first touch of someone you are falling in love with, whether it is a kiss, or a brief arm brush it is an amazing thing! The right song at the right time can easily elicit a memory triggering an emotion. Do we forget our humanity? Or do we forget to stop and smell the roses?
How about the smell of bacon frying to wake you up on a Sunday morning? A friend that reaches out to see how you are doing when you need it most! Of course, much of our daily comfort rests in the hands of others, so even the best laid plans can go astray. I know it is hard to count on others sometimes, so please do not put your eggs all in one basket, and make sure you find daily comfort within yourself. Do you read? A book often takes me back to another time or place, it may be one of reality or one of imagination. Sure you can kick yourself every day for missing out something you should have taken the time to experience, but that just breeds more inner discontentment. That is not where the key to happiness lies. I ask people, what are the pleasures of life that makes it worthwhile to them, and of course the answers vary like the wind. The answer could be cocktails at the end of a long hard day. It could be playing catch with your sons in the back yard. Sometimes the answer is nothing. People so far gone in emotional stagnation often forget to live. People so far gone in anger and hatred over the dumbest things ruin it for those that just want to be happy, and make the most out of life.
A walk on the beach as the winter days are turning to spring invigorates the soul. A neck rub from someone who loves you is an amazing feeling. A hug just to tell someone you care goes a long way to a wonderful day. Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to take a drive on a beautiful day with your radio blasting without having a road bully ruining it for you? I am concerned about the future of humanity! If people forget to live or let others live, then what is the future of humanity without the moments in the day that can bring peace to a troubled heart? Watching your dog roll around on the grass in his own elation may teach us a lesson to live by. We humans complicate our lives so much with meaningless clutter. Take a lesson from your dog, a dog only know the now and not the tomorrow. They live for that ear scratch and doggie treat. I would love an ear scratch and a treat! Wouldn’t you rather smile and laugh with someone than argue and hate? Every day, like you, I fight the battle between happy and unhappy! The mental friction setting my mind and heart on fire! Every day I try and make myself seek and hold my daily comfort!
By Columnist: Tim Flanagan
"Picture yourself in a boat on a river, with tangerine trees and marmalade skies. Somebody calls you; you answer quite slowly. A girl with kaleidoscope eyes". I always thought that this popular Beatles song was written from the imagination of a child! Children approach perception a lot different than we do. As we choose not to believe because of learned disappointment, children believe everything is possible! Their innocence blossoms out like branches on a young tree! Innocence is believing, and believing is everything! Innocence! Forever lost, and triumphant in its eternity!
A child learns what it experiences! For a better future for that child and the world that inherits its path, wouldn't we want our children to grow up believing? Belief of good in others, positive belief in oneself and belief that there are answers to life's quandaries! Do we nurture our children? Do we treat them with the same openheartedness they do us? Do you remember what it was like being a child? Do you remember someone important in your life, and thinking wow they are my giant protector and I love them? I don't! My grandson does however, how he looks at me with big eyes and a smile tells me everything I need to know. He is the child in my life, through whom I experience the belief, wonder and happiness that escaped me as a child. How could I yell at that sweet face, or hit him out of my own frustration? How could I hinder his belief in good when my own reality is clouded with hard experience? His trust in me has renewed my trust in others! His imagination has reminded me that anything is possible! The wonder in his eyes gives me indescribable pleasure as I join him on his journey into discovery! His hugs are genuine and without expectation!
Wonder and amazement, two strong childlike qualities! When was the last time you experienced wonder or amazement? Remember that feeling as it washes over you, struck with awe at something beautiful or innovative? Children live it all the time, unless it is taken away from them! What happens when you put ego before a child? Belief can turn to betrayal in the time it takes the hand to hit the face! Wonder can turn to bewilderment in the blink of a lie! A smile to a frown as quick as the anger boils! Children are not easy, but half the battle is your outlook! Children do not need being yelled at all the time, sit and explain why the answer is no. They need discipline and consistency in that discipline! Structure helps you and the child; expectations set are expectations met! They say it takes a "whole village to raise a child", but until that happens it starts with the individual! Let's be good to our little ones!
The imagination of a child is surreal and creative, the foundation on which dreams depend! Children learn more from silent observation, or more sometimes noisy observation. It is our everyday behavior patterns they duplicate rather than just what we tell them. What do they see when they look at you? What do they hear when there is an adult conversation? I am not saying not to be yourself, but make a better self using the reflective power of a child! Tomorrow is an easy scapegoat, however the little hand that seeks your touch will not always be there. That voice full of life and laughter can become a distant whisper in a moment long gone. A hug like no other, but no longer. So next time you feel that tug on your pant leg, don't brush it aside, the greatest achievement of all stands before you!
A Child's Life
By Columnist: Tim Flanagan
creates harsher political lines
By Columnist: Alice Walker
Every day we are inundated with ads. It is a multibillion dollar industry so it only makes sense that advertisers would try to come up with ways to make advertising more efficient. Targeted advertising is one way that advertisers have stepped up their game.
Everything you do online is recorded and sold to the highest bidder. If you type in “what is the weather going to be like today” suddenly when you go over to your social media or other apps on your phone, tablet or, computer there are a bunch of advertisements for jackets, boots, and tropical vacation destinations. Companies use web trackers and cookies to save keywords and personal information to better understand what kind of advertising would work for you. Each time you talk to your voice recognition devices it does the same thing. It most certainly is an invasion of privacy but there are other issues these ads are causing.
By collecting information about you they can then tailor the information and the ads that they feed to you. What does this mean for our country? With political lines already being harsh, targeted ads are only making things worse. With the information that they have gathered on you they cherry pick the information that they show you. Since companies choose what you see it is cementing political beliefs in peoples’ minds. It used to be that people would see both sides of an argument now; targeted advertising is taking that away. Targeted advertising bolsters their side of the argument while eliminating or tarnishing the other side. This is incredibly dangerous because it is eliminating their ability to make informed opinions while simultaneously getting them to perpetuate the argument.
Most of the time there are multiple articles for the same event from the same company. They do this so they can sell to both sides. One of the most popular examples of this is when The Wall Street Journal on September 1, 2016, wrote two different headlines for the same article. The Article was about President Trump (before the election) meeting with the President of Mexico Enrique Peña Nieto to talk about the plans for the wall. One head line read “Trump Softens His Tone” and the other said “Trump Talks Tough on Wall” they did this in order to help sway voters for the upcoming election. The first head line “Trump Softens His Tone” was sold in areas that were shown to be more liberal to attempt to show that the now president was compassionate and the article with the title “Trump Talks Tough on Wall” was sold in places that were shown as more conservative to show that Trump would stick by his campaign platform. The Wall Street Journal said that their newspaper is “constantly under revision” and that it was “unintentional” however, things like this happen all the time. Unless you go out and seek more information you are only getting what they want you to see. Let’s face it not many people are actively looking up multiple articles to find out the whole story and the advertisers rely on that. There is a lot of thought that goes into each word of every article to make sure they elicit a response from you.
David Green from ‘Marking Solutions’ states “Don’t just preach at your audience, engage them! Get them involved and promptly reply to outreach” one of the ways advertisers get you to reach out and share information is to create controversy sometimes even resulting in bending the truth. To this point Seth Godwin from ‘Wed Strategies Plus’ said “Marketing is no longer about the stuff you make, but about the stories you tell.” Targeted advertising is becoming more invasive but there are ways around it. We the consumers must be more diligent in fact checking before we continue fighting for what the media and its advertisers are feeding to us. We must also realize that not all the information given to us is credible or useful. Sometimes the information that we are seeing is just more targeted advertising disguised as helpful information.