Category Archives: Christians

The Cost of War….a pictorial of American Blood Shed…Where is the HUMANITY?

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 NO MORE! NO SYRIAN INTERVENTION!

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The Progressive President and the American Middle Class…

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I have been accused of being hard on this President when it comes to privacy, chained CPI, Larry Summers and intervention in Syria. However I have been a tireless supporter of this President. I have never given up hope on his agenda. That does not mean that as an Independent Progressives I will not speak up when his agenda may hurt the freedom and liberty of Americans. I believe in this man and I know his accomplishments. This “BLACK” President has done more for the American Middle Class in four and a half years than the Republican Party has done in 30:

1. Passed the Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare’s)
2. Passed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act
3. Earned Income Tax Credit. Under current law, working families with two or more children currently qualify for an Earned Income Tax Credit equal to 40 percent of the family’s first $12,570 in earned income. The stimulus set the rate at 45 percent for families with three or more children and made other adjustments. The fiscal cliff bill extends these provisions for five additional years, through 2017.
4. Child Tax Credit. The stimulus set a new threshold for refundability of the credit, and the fiscal cliff bill extends that for five years, though 2017
5. Marriage penalty. A “marriage penalty” describes what happens when a couple pays more income tax if they file jointly as a couple than they would if they had remained single and filed as individuals. The fiscal cliff bill permanently extended marriage penalty relief for the standard deduction, the 15 percent bracket, and the Earned Income Tax Credit.
6. Dependent Care Credit. The dependent care credit benefits taxpayers who have child care expenses for children under 13 and disabled dependents. Under Bush, the amount of eligible expenses was increased. The fiscal cliff bill makes those changes permanent.
7. Adoption tax credits. Taxpayers who adopt children can receive a tax credit for adoption expenses and can exclude adoption expenses paid by an employer from the calculation of their income. Under Bush, the terms of this credit became more generous, and under Obama’s health care law, these benefits were extended and the credit was made refundable. The fiscal cliff bill extends these provisions permanently.
8. Increase minority access to capital
9. Implement “Women Owned Business” contracting program
10. Create a consumer-friendly credit card rating system
11. Establish a credit card bill of rights
12. Expand loan programs for small businesses
13. Close the “doughnut hole” in Medicare prescription drug plan
14. Require insurance companies to cover pre-existing conditions
15. Provided tax credits to Americans who need help to pay health premiums
16. Require large employers to contribute to a national health plan
17. Require health plans to disclose how much of the premium goes to patient care
18. Reinstate executive order to hire an additional 100,000 federal employees with disabilities within five years
19. Increase the Veterans Administration budget to recruit and retain more mental health professionals
20. Expand Veterans Centers in rural areas
21. Fully fund the Veterans Administration
22. Expand housing vouchers program for homeless veterans
23. Fully fund the Violence Against Women Act
24. Increase funding for national parks and forests
25. Expand Pell grants for low-income students
26. President Obama signs hate crimes bill, Wednesday, October 28th, 2009 President Barack Obama has signed a bill to expand the federal hate crimes law. The Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act, named after two men who were killed more than 10 years ago because of their sexual orientation, was included in a defense bill that Obama signed on Oct. 28, 2009.
27. Repeal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy
28. Strengthen the levees in New Orleans
29. Toughen enforcement for Internet exploitation of children
30. Send first-time nonviolent drug offenders to rehab if appropriate
31. Create new criminal penalties for mortgage fraud
32. Reduce dependence on foreign oil
33. Reverse restrictions on stem cell research
34. He is bringing home “OUR” Sons and Daughters from Iraq and Afghanistan
35. He brought Osama Bin Ladin to justice for his attacks on 911

march_on_washington

Today is the anniversary of the “March on Washington”. As Americans we have been told throughout history that minorities were inferior, that they could not accomplish what White Americans could accomplish. It took over 230 years for a Black man to become the President. To prove that this Black man was not up to the task White Conservatives would not lift a finger to help this man make things better for the American Middle Class. They threw every obstacle at this President, they said “NO” to all of his ideas. They were intransigent and destructive to democracy. They mocked this man, they ridiculed him. They behaved less than Statesmanlike. But this Black President stood proud and he faced this Nation with incredible grace and dignity that no Republicans has exhibited since his election in 2008.


I have never been more proud of “MY” President and never more proud of the Progressives of all Races, Ethnicities, Religions, Sexual Orientation and social classes. On this day I salute the first African American President, Barack Obama. So many Americans have sacrificed throughout our history to make this possible and he has not disappointed that effort. I dare say that no White Males, Progressives or Conservative could have maintained such dignity in the face of the behavior and disrespect showed to him by the right wing of this Country.
But today I have a dream that this will not be the last African American President, that a Woman will be given her chance to lead, that “ALL” Americans will be given the chance to fulfill the “American Ideal”….ALL MEN ARE CREATED EQUAL…

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2014 is Around the Corner…The American Middle Class Needs to Vote for Middle Class Interests!

Paul Ryan Spending Cuts Face Backlash From Moderate Republicans

By ANDREW TAYLOR 08/12/13 03:11 AM ET EDT

WASHINGTON — Midway between the 2012 and 2014 election campaigns, moderate Republican conservatives are beginning to foment a revolt of their own – a backlash to anti-spending tea party shrillness as budget cuts begin to significantly shrink defense and domestic programs.

Tea party forces may have dominated the House GOP’s approach to the budget so far, but pragmatists in the party have served notice they won’t stand idly by for indiscriminate spending cuts to politically popular community development grants, education programs and even Amtrak.

Voting in the spring for the tea party budget developed by Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., who was Mitt Romney’s vice presidential running mate last year, was one thing. But as long as a Democrat occupies the White House, Ryan’s budget is little more than a nonbinding wish list – cutting Medicaid, Medicare and food stamps and slashing budgets for domestic agencies funded annually through appropriations bills.

Many tenured Republicans, particularly members of the House Appropriations Committee, have viewed Ryan’s sweeping cuts as unworkable all along. When more than $4 billion in entirely new cuts came to the House floor in the form of an actual bill for funding transportation and housing programs, House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, confronted shaky support from less ardently conservative Republicans and decided to pull the $44 billion package on July 31.

That sparked a frustrated outburst from the committee chairman, Rep. Harold Rogers, R-Ky. He called for abandoning the Ryan budget and starting bipartisan negotiations that would provide appropriators with “a realistic spending level to fund the government in a responsible – and attainable – way.”

“Attainable” is code for something that can pass the Senate and get signed by President Barack Obama. That’s rarely a recipe for tea party fun.

It seems that the Presidential hopes of an Ayn Rand 1% utopia are being dashed for Paul Ryan.  As the Republican Party does that math, some of them have finally figured out that 1% of the votes is not a sustainable strategy?  Ryan Budget’s draconian cuts to programs that help keep the American Middle Class strong would spell doom as those in the Middle Class figure out that they are the ones being targeted and screwed by the GOP.

The self-serving 1% who continue to pour money into campaigns have not figured out that “Tivo” is their worst enemy.  Costly TV ads did not work in the Presidential Campaign of 2012 as technology allowed those tech savvy Americans to just cut out the ads.  The Primaries and Debates seem to have made a comeback and that is surely why Reince Priebus is trying to game the cable networks who will carry the Republican Primary Debates.

Paul Ryan’s budget aims to usher in an 18th Century America in a 21st Century world to undo the 20th Century gains that the Roosevelt Administration implemented to end the Great Depression.  Programs that worked to strengthen the American Middle Class.  As Pope Francis re-directs the Catholic Church to focus on social issues (world hunger, injustice, the poor, racism and tolerance) and lighten the Church’s tone on the divisive issue of homosexuality; Evangelicals push for immigration reform; the backlash of Reagan’s War on Drugs; the push back on Bush’s surveillance state; Women’s reaction nationwide on issues that affect their pay and health; acceptance of marriage equality; and the abject failure of free market and trickle down solutions to help bring prosperity to the middle class are only serving to brand Paul Ryan and his budget persona non grata.  The shiny youthful and creative image of Paul Ryan the young boy wonder is showing his age and beginning to tarnish.

If the Republican Party is to remain relevant, they need to start coming up with ideas that help a majority of Americans prosper instead of catering to those rich in wealth but poor in votes, 1% of the voting public to be exact.  The future of the Republican Party hangs in the balance, continued bleeding of support with women, minorities and Millennials is not sustainable for a national political party.  Even Senior citizens seem to be turning on the GOP. “Just 28 percent of voters 65 and older had a favorable view of the Republican Party in a national survey conducted last month by the Democratic pollster Stan Greenberg, versus 40 percent who had a positive view of the Democrats. That’s a reversal from a poll Greenberg conducted in early 2011, when 43 percent of seniors saw Republicans favorably and 37 percent saw Democrats that way.” according to an article in the National Journal.

The 1% is spending billions of dollars to keep White Middle Class men from voting their interest, cynically creating strategies to keep the Middle Class White Males angry at everyone else but the 1% that has systematically extracted their wealth through Wall Street graft; busted Unions that provide pensions, healthcare benefits and job security; the outsourcing of good paying American jobs to third world countries to line the pockets of the investor class at the expense of the American Middle Class. Cutting governments programs designed to help keep the Middle Class strong and viable like student loans, Medicare, Social Security, Veterans Benefits and the Social Safety net to cut taxes further for the very rich.

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The Republicans in Congress have waged war on the institutions that keep our Country strong and provide stability to the markets.  The short-term profit taking strategies of Wall Street create a continued stream of bubbles that burst, the system rigged so that the wealthy win even when the market crashes, as they support government guarantees for their reckless gambles at the expense of the middle class tax payers and their 401K retirement plans.

Worried Man At Desk And Computer Paying Bills Stock Image - Image: 14402711

It is time for the American Middle Class to fight back, enough is enough, “We the People” must unite regardless of race or ethnicity, sexual orientation, religious belief, age and focus on the economic interest of a “MAJORITY” of Americans.  Just remember Corporate American has lobbyist fighting for them in Washington, Wall Street fights for the Investors, CEO’s fight for the Executives and Marketing, the Board of Directors fight for the CEO’s….Stop and think who is fighting for me?

Racial Coalition

Regardless of your race or ethnicity, when you sit down at the kitchen table to pay your bills, ponder these questions.  How does stopping gay people from getting married help me provide for my family?  How does English only legislation help me pay for braces for my teenager?  How does overturning Roe vs. Wade provide me with job security?  How does voting 40 times to repeal Obamacare help me get affordable health insurance for my wife with cancer?  How do tax cuts for the 1% help me pay my mortgage or rent?  How does prayer in school help my children get a good ACADEMIC education so that they have a better life then I did?  How does busting Unions provide me with a living wage? How does reducing funding for food assistance help me feed my family? How does shutting down the government help me send my kids to college?   Ask yourself these questions America don’t let Republican talking points lead you down the path of destruction…Throw the TEA PARTY into the metaphoric Boston Harbor!

“Lunch Pail” Republicans…GOP betrayal of the Middle Class White Guy!

How the GOP betrayed the “Lunch Pail” Republicans…

From the Lunch Pail Republican Website:

“All across America, many life-long Republicans are feeling completely disconnected from their Party and their candidates in Washington. They want their Party to return to the issues that define what it means to be a Republican. We hear you loud and clear. It’s time to take back our party.

 Are you a Lunch Pail Republican?

Do you believe in…?

  • A strong economy?
  • Less government?
  • Good paying jobs?
  • Less government intrusion in the private sector?
  • Employee-sponsored health care?
  • Labor-Management cooperation?

If you answered “yes” to 3 or more of the above questions, then you are a Lunch Pail Republican. It’s time to take back our party. We invite you to join us.

Who Are We?

We are Republicans who are focused on providing for ourselves and our families, protecting our rights and our property from intrusion, and keeping our country on a path toward recovery and prosperity. We’re not taking the Party in a new direction. We’re simply returning it to the traditional core Republican values that used to define who we are.

About the Lunch Pail Republicans

Statement of Principles

  • We the Lunchpail Republicans believe in building and maintaining an America with a strong economy, unrivaled liberty, and a government that unobtrusively empowers the middle class.
  • We believe that the Republican Party has abandoned its traditional principles by advancing an agenda that negatively impacts workers’ wages, benefits and quality of life.
  • We believe that the current anti-worker agenda ultimately harms the Republican Party by discouraging middle-class Republicans from voting for Republican candidates whose policies would harm them, or worse, from participating in the election process at all.
  • We believe that the interests of workers and businesses are reliant upon each other, and without one, the other cannot stand.
  • We believe that elected officials have an obligation to protect workers’ interests as well as corporate interests, and that a growing disparity between the two is harmful to America’s long-term viability.
  • We believe that America’s economy is strongest with the presence of a robust middle class.
  • We believe that enemies of the middle class exist on both the left and the right, and the middle class must mobilize to remove them from office.

We are the Republicans who are focused on providing for ourselves and our families, protecting our rights and our property from intrusion, and keeping our country on a path toward recovery and prosperity.

We are not being represented.

Too many “Republicans” are far more focused on pushing someone else’s agenda and playing politics to get re-elected than looking out for us, the working people who they are sent there to protect.

Our beliefs are simple.

We believe in freedom of speech, the right to bear arms, and most of all, in limited government. Our parents’ and grandparents’ Republican Party would never stand for the type of attacks that are being leveled against working people. We are pro-business and pro-labor because neither one can survive without the other; we will stand with candidates who stand with us.

Hands off our unions.

If we work under a union contract, chances are we are paid better than we would be without it. That means something to us. If a union helps us earn more money to support our families, paying our union a little bit is only fair. We aren’t freeloaders, and we don’t want the government forcing our union to represent freeloaders, because it will just weaken our ability to bring home those better wages.

If you think you have the right to tell any union, business, or independent organization that it has to work for nothing, stop calling yourself a Republican. Stay out of it. It’s none of your business.

We are looking for a few good working men and women.

Too many of our leaders have forgotten what is important to working people, so it is time for them to go.”

The Republican Party has moved so far to the “WACKO-EXTREME” even those that call themselves “Lunch Pail” Republicans can see that the GOP has left them behind.  The Republicans wrongfully believe that “EVERYONE” that supports them is either a Corporate Executive, Investor or an Entrepreneur.   1% is 1%…and 1% is not a majority.  There are working class Republicans that are increasingly feeling alienated by the Party of Lincoln.

Two years ago, 100,000 Wisconsin residents, working class Republicans, Democrats and Independents alike surrounded and occupied the state capitol. Police, Fire, Teachers and Wisconsin Citizens mobilized in one of the largest labor protests in modern American history. Gov. Scott Walker’s efforts to strip public sector workers of collective bargaining rights lifted the veil of the anti-worker agendas of the new Republican leadership.

All across this Nation there are “Blue Collar Working Class” Republicans who are paid through tax dollars.  Police and Fire are part of those constituencies.  As the Republican Governors focus on breaking their Unions, Police and Fire need to wake up and see the direction the Party is going.  The family of a firefighter killed with 18 colleagues while battling a summer wildfire is waging a campaign urging the city of Prescott, Ariz., to provide his survivors with full health and pension benefits. Firemen all across this Country need to ask themselves what are Republican Governors, Representatives and Senators doing to protect the rights of their families.  Fire and Police put their lives on the line every day and all they ask in return is that their families are taken care of.  Blindly trusting that the GOP has your interest at heart because you are a White Male is misplaced.  You need to ask the question, what are you doing for me and my family?

Prescott, which employed Firefighter, Andrew Ashcraft and other members of the Granite Mountain Hotshots, says Ashcraft and 12 others who died were seasonal employees, leaving their survivors ineligible for benefits that would go to a full-time employee.  State, Local and Federal Representatives need to be pushed to act on “BEHALF” of Police and Fire.  What are GOP Representatives in Arizona doing to make this situation right?  Andrew Ashcraft gave his life for Arizona, what is Arizona a Red State doing to take care of its heroic firefighters and men in blue? What are the Democrats doing in that State for that matter?

“I want to be able to just be mourning my husband, be supporting my children, be figuring out what our new normal is,” Juliann Ashcraft, Andrew’s widow and mother of their four children, said at a news conference Wednesday outside the Yavapai County courthouse in Prescott. “As shocked as I was that my husband went to work and never came home, I’m equally shocked in how the city has treated our family since then,” she said.

For those Republican Firefighters and Republican Police, these are the words of widow left behind, she represents your wife and your children.  Will your wife have to fight this battle all alone, will your children be left to fend for themselves?  Is breaking Police and Fire Unions in your family’s best interest?

White “Lunch Pail” Republicans take too much for granted.  As the GOP leadership points the fingers at women and minorities, the 1% of “YOUR” tribe betrays “YOUR” interest.

In Detroit an epic battle ensues as workers and pensioners filed suit against Republican Gov. Rick Snyder and state Treasurer Andy Dillon, seeking to prevent them from filing a possible municipal bankruptcy petition for Detroit because, they argue, such a move would violate Michigan’s constitutional protections of public pension benefits. This should be a warning to Police and Fire in every major City, your State Constitutions will not help you and the Republican Governors seem to fighting against the interest of Police and Fire and not for you.

What have the Republicans in the House of Representatives done to “STOP” the outsourcing of good paying American jobs?  Nothing!  Absolutely nothing, but Corporate America has shipped “OUR” jobs overseas, reaped gargantuan profits and then hoarded those profits offshore. A state of denial exists among Republican policymakers and outsourcing’s corporate champions about the adverse effects on the US.  As they outsource our jobs leaving us unemployed, the GOP politicians then call us lazy takers.  They expect us to take 2 or 3 low paying service jobs and refuse to pass legislation that would provide a living wage.

In what might be an underestimate, a University of California study concludes that 14 million white-collar jobs are vulnerable to being outsourced offshore. These are not only call-center operators, customer service and back-office jobs, but also information technology, accounting, architecture, advanced engineering design, news reporting, stock analysis, and medical and legal services. The authors of the study note that these are the jobs of the American Dream, the jobs of upward mobility that generate the bulk of the tax revenues that fund our education, health, infrastructure, and social security systems. Ask yourself, what are the “REPUBLICANS” doing to stop this bleeding to strengthen the American Middle Class? Again NOTHING!  These are “WHITE COLLAR” jobs, so those of you with College Degrees are not immune from your tribe betraying you either.  The 1% are loyal to the 1%, they hoard money, they do not trickle it down to you…that trickle you feel is not money…

“The Department of Labor reports that more than one in three workers who are displaced remains unemployed, and many of those who are lucky enough to find jobs take major pay cuts. Many former manufacturing workers who were displaced a decade ago because of manufacturing that went offshore took training courses and found jobs in the information technology sector. They are now facing the unenviable situation of having their second career disappear overseas.”

What has the GOP proposed to fix this Middle Class concern?  Again nothing!  The misplaced loyalty that White Males have given to the GOP is being betrayed as they laugh at you behind your back and defraud you with divisive issues, like gay marriage, prayer in school, English only, banning abortion, demonizing minorities, gun rights, LGBT rights and women’s rights.  How does any one of those issues improve or strengthen the American Middle Class…the 1% is laughing at you as they pick your pockets clean…there is no loyalty from the 1% to the “TRIBE” their “TRIBE” is the 1% and you are only there to provide the spoils not too share them.

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Demand that the GOP acts in “YOUR” interest or tell them to take a hike “Lunch Pail” Republicans!

To the Party of Christian Values…”Who Am I To Judge Them?” Pope Francis

Pope FrancisSt. Peter's Basilica

Pope Francis On Gays: Who Am I To Judge Them?

By Paul Brandeis Raushenbush posted: 07/29/2013 8:01 am EDT  |  Updated: 07/29/2013 11:34 am EDT Huffington Post

ABOARD THE PAPAL AIRCRAFT — Pope Francis reached out to gays on Monday, saying he wouldn’t judge priests for their sexual orientation in a remarkably open and wide-ranging news conference as he returned from his first foreign trip.

“If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?” Francis asked.

His predecessor, Pope Benedict XVI, signed a document in 2005 that said men with deep-rooted homosexual tendencies should not be priests. Francis was much more conciliatory, saying gay clergymen should be forgiven and their sins forgotten.

Francis’ remarks came Monday during a plane journey back to the Vatican from his first foreign trip in Brazil.

He was funny and candid during a news conference that lasted almost an hour and a half. He didn’t dodge a single question, even thanking the journalist who raised allegations reported by an Italian newsmagazine that one of his trusted monsignors was involved in a scandalous gay tryst.

Francis said he investigated and found nothing to back up the allegations.

Francis was asked about Italian media reports suggesting that a group within the church tried to blackmail fellow church officials with evidence of their homosexual activities. Italian media reported this year that the allegations contributed to Benedict’s decision to resign

While stressing Catholic social teaching that calls for homosexuals to be treated with dignity and not marginalized, Francis said it was something else entirely to conspire to use private information for blackmail or to exert pressure.

Francis was responding to reports that a trusted aide was involved in an alleged gay tryst a decade ago. He said he investigated the allegations according to canon law and found nothing to back them up. But he took journalists to task for reporting on the matter, saying the allegations concerned matters of sin, not crimes like sexually abusing children.

And when someone sins and confesses, he said, God not only forgives but forgets.

“We don’t have the right to not forget,” he said.

Life Liberty and Justice for All

“Who am I too judge them” a great question for Christians.  For the past 30 years the Republicans have used “homosexuality” as a wedge issue and the Catholic Church was complicit in the persecution of the gay community.  Today Pope Francis took the first step in pivoting the Holy Roman Catholic Church back to focusing on social issues, income inequality, hunger, healthcare and the plight of the poor.   The comments from the Pope are Biblically rooted and for years have been ignored and overlooked by conservative Christian religions around the world.

Jesus Christ spoke for the poor, sick and disenfranchised.  As Christians we are asked to be Christ-like and the Holy Scriptures are clear, we are not to judge each other:

Matthew 7:3 “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?”

Luke 6:37 “Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven;”

Romans 14:1-23 As for the one who is weak in faith, welcome him, but not to quarrel over opinions. One person believes he may eat anything, while the weak person eats only vegetables. Let not the one who eats despise the one who abstains, and let not the one who abstains pass judgment on the one who eats, for God has welcomed him. Who are you to pass judgment on the servant of another? It is before his own master that he stands or falls. And he will be upheld, for the Lord is able to make him stand. One person esteems one day as better than another, while another esteems all days alike. Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind. …

Corinthians 4:1-21 This is how one should regard us, as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God. Moreover, it is required of stewards that they be found trustworthy. But with me it is a very small thing that I should be judged by you or by any human court. In fact, I do not even judge myself. For I am not aware of anything against myself, but I am not thereby acquitted. It is the Lord who judges me. Therefore do not pronounce judgment before the time, before the Lord comes, who will bring to light the things now hidden in darkness and will disclose the purposes of the heart. Then each one will receive his commendation from God. ..

John 8:7 “And as they continued to ask him, he stood up and said to them, “Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her.”

Matthew 7:1 “Judge not, that you be not judged.”

Matthew 5:22  “But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell of fire”

Romans 2:1 “Therefore you have no excuse, O man, every one of you who judges. For in passing judgment on another you condemn yourself, because you, the judge, practice the very same things.”

 John 3:16By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers.”

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One more “wedge” issue has fallen.  Again I urge “ALL” atheist, agnostics, progressives, liberals and Democrats to hold the “Party of Christian Values, the GOP” to the tenets of the Holy Scriptures.  Take the judgmental wedge issues from them and use the Bible to do it!  The Republican time of division is over…

“As for a person who stirs up division, after warning him once and then twice, have nothing more to do with him…”