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Friday, May 5, 2017

The Writer's Life 5/5 - Tough Decision

Colombia has suffered a 50-year war between its government and the Marxist narco-terrorist group FARC. Monica Crowley offers her take on the situation in a riveting op-ed piece in today's NY Post. In the aforementioned span, it is estimated that FARC committed 200,000-300,000 murders. Citizens have grown weary of the slaughter and many seem ready to surrender power to the group. In a new pact, drug trafficking and money laundering will be legal. There will be no punishment of FARC members guilty of murder, but military men and police officers accused of the same will remain in prison. Like the Irish IRA, FARC will now have a political wing and a special, separate court comprised of judges of its own choosing. It will also have its own paramilitary. All of the above may be contingent upon a half-billion in aid promised by the Obama administration. President Trump must now decide whether to send it. I will be surprised if he does, as he has always seemed to have contempt for illegal drugs. Unfortunately, political expediency often outweighs personal beliefs. If the money is given to Colombia, it may become the world's first narco-state, and won't it be interesting to see how that turns out. Gone are the days of Juan Valdez and his premium coffee.

Also in Colombia, from the Weird But True column in the Post, in my own words: We all know how bitter the end of a relationship can be. A woman took an extreme measure to keep her husband, whom she was divorcing, from claiming $7000 in U.S. currency - she swallowed it. In severe pain, she was taken to a hospital, where doctors recovered $5700 from her stomach. The rest had been dissolved by gastric juices.

Also in the Post: a recent survey found that 50.8% of American households now use cell phone exclusively. 6.5% use landline only. I went cell-only in 2008, after I got the boot from the Commodity Exchange and needed to save money. I remember how anxious I was about the move. Like most fears, it proved groundless. And it has saved me a lot of money. My simple needs are covered by a pay as you go plan at Tracfone that costs about $125 a year. Normal folks need a lot more than that.

The floating book shop was rained out today and the prospects don't look good for tomorrow. C'est la vie.
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