America Is Awash in Opioids, Urgent Action Is Critical

The outspoken and fantastically fierce Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke filled in for Glenn on The Glenn Beck Program today, Monday, December 19.

Read below or listen to the full segment from Hour 3 for answers to these questions:

• How do we stop people from becoming addicted?

• What synthetic opioid is 50 to 100 times stronger than morphine?

• How are doctors and pharmaceutical companies complicit?

• Are politicians getting paid off by pharmaceutical companies?

• Will crime increase in 2017?

• When will Sheriff Clarke's new book Cop Under Fire be available?

Listen to this segment from The Glenn Beck Program:

Below is a rush transcript of this segment, it might contain errors:

DAVID: Welcome back to the program. Milwaukee County David Clarke in for Glenn Beck. This is the Glenn Beck Program. We're talking immigration. Let's go right to the phone. Gabe from Texas. Welcome to the Glenn Beck Program.

Gabe, are you there? Going once. Going twice. I guess we lost Gabe.

So I'm going to close out immigration here. We're talking about sanctuary cities, how the local governments many of them -- probably most of them. I stay away from absolutes. I would say all. But most of them are run by liberal Democrats who don't believe in our nation's immigration laws, who don't believe that we should have borders, don't believe those borders should be protected, borders should be enforced. And it's wreaking havoc.

But here's another issue of why at the local level, sanctuary cities are a public safety menace. Here's how this works at the local level.

You have people in the country illegally, who are in the city -- any city. Name a city that's a sanctuary city: Pittsburgh. Their mayor recently -- Peduto, I think his name is, recently declared that they were going to make Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, a sanctuary city.

But here's what happened: You have people in the country illegally. They're committing crimes.

And that's not all illegal aliens committing crimes. But the ones that do. Here's what they know: They know that if they victimize somebody in the country illegally, that victim is not likely to call the police for fear of being discovered to be in the country illegally themselves.

So, in other words, I do a street robbery and I know you're in the country illegally, I know you're not going to call the police. The victim judges goes home and says, "I can't call the police because then it will be discovered that I'm in the country illegally. And I don't want to be discovered and identified. And I don't want to be kicked out. So we have unreporting and underreporting of serious crime in these cities because of the illegal immigration issue.

So the police don't know that the crime is going on and will continue to go on. I don't know if these mayors and these city councils and county boards, I don't know if they think about this or not. Do they care about their law-abiding citizens in that city or county? Is there such a disregard for the rule of law -- that's probably why the Democrats continue to lose seats in state legislatures. Lose governor's races. Members of Congress. Because they don't care about law-abiding citizens anymore, the Democrats.

They work harder to protect and create an environment -- a safe environment for illegal aliens than they do law-abiding citizens. This actually goes on. This criminalization, the victimization -- and I'm talking about some serious crimes, ladies and gentlemen. I'm talking about things like -- I mentioned robberies. I'm talking about sexual assault. I'm talking about domestic violence. I'm talking about child abuse.

Where if you're in the country legally and you know someone is abusing your child, you may not notify local law enforcement because you don't want to be discovered to be in the country illegally.

This stuff has to be enforced.

Let's go back to the phones. Scott from Ohio, welcome to the Glenn Beck Program.

CALLER: Sheriff, how are you? Thank you very much for all that you do. You're a witness to this American Revolution that we're in right now and the battle to reclaim law and order in America.

DAVID: Thank you, sir. It's an honor. It's an honor to serve. Go ahead.

CALLER: Yeah. The question is: I've traveled internationally, and in regard to your comments on enforcing E-Verify, countries like Great Britain actually publicly announce fines that they give for companies that have been caught hiring large number of illegals. It could be 1,000 pounds. It could be 20,000 pounds.

But they publicly announce that for two reasons. One is to openly identify to the public the problem that they had. But, two, also to keep the other companies in line. They have little problem with enforcing E-Verify through that public announcement and the fine itself. What are your comments on that?

DAVID: Well, first of all -- and thanks for the call, Scott, I appreciate it. Merry Christmas to you.

You know, with the E-Verify system, first of all, I think the biggest problem is that it's voluntary. When you get into this squishy area with, you know, do the feds want to force -- or can they force the local communities -- I think private businesses, they can. Can they make them enforce immigration laws, even private businesses, which is what this would be doing? But I'm not going to get all hung up on that stuff.

I'm going to go back to the thing that I mentioned earlier where if you do heavy fines with these individuals, especially the ones who don't use E-Verify before they hire somebody -- now, here's the problem even if you do use E-Verify: Most of these individuals that come in looking for work, you don't even really know who they are. You come in, they give you somebody else's name. They give you the documentation of somebody who is in the country legally.

The employer doesn't know that. So he runs that name in. So let's say you have a person who is legally in the United States. And he or she has a birth certificate. A driver -- probably a birth certificate. They go to the employer and say, "Yeah, here's who I am." And they run that through E-Verify. It's going to say, "Yeah, that person is in the country legally." But it's not even the person who passed the document.

So I understand some of the complexities for employers, but I think the first step is making it not voluntary, making it mandatory to do that sort of thing.

Let's try Gabe from Texas back again. Gabe, you're on the Glenn Beck Program. Go ahead, sir.

We still don't have Gabe.

Okay. That's what Congress is going to be dealing with. And they're going to want to hear from you. By the way, ladies and gentlemen, you know what people in Congress tell me all the time? If we don't hear from constituents, we don't think it's that big a deal. They might know it's a big deal, but if they don't think it's going to move the political needle for them, they're not going to fool with it. They have to hear from you. They have to hear from you.

Let's try Gabe one more time. Gabe from Texas, you're on the Glenn Beck Radio Program. Go ahead, Gabe.

CALLER: Hello. Hello. Yeah, I live 5 miles from the border of the United States right here in Texas. And the city -- the city of Mercedes, Texas, and it's a big frustration over here. I know we got an immigration issue in all four corners of our country. But we're talking about the southern border, it's a big frustration for us down here. And the problem I have -- I am an American citizen. I did serve my country. And the problem I have now is that a lot of the influx of the people that are coming over, they got to find jobs. And most of them are taking -- that I can see, they're taking American jobs. And they're all over the place. And we're talking large numbers at a time.

And also, another issue that I have around here is most people are staying true to their Mexican flags. And you see it all over the place, you know. And they're not pledging to the United States flag.

DAVID: Gabe, thanks for your call. Gabe, I got to let you go in the interest of time here. But a couple of things that you touched on, and, you know, you're right. And you're seeing it firsthand, the border enforcement. But you're also talking about, you know, people come into this country for a reason, because they want to experience American exceptionalism. They obviously believe in the western culture. The opportunities that the United States affords. They want to participate in that.

Well, you can't have one foot in the water and one foot out of the water. You either come here because you want to experience American exceptionalism -- exceptionalism, or you don't. You left your country of origin for a reason. And I don't care what that reason -- I don't care what your motivation is. You left that country for a reason. You couldn't find work. It's a war-torn country. No matter what it is, you left. Leave it behind.

I'm Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke in for Glenn Beck. We have to take a break. This is the Glenn Beck Program.

[break]

DAVID: Welcome back to the program. I'm Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke in for Glenn Beck.

This is the Glenn Beck Program.

We're going to switch gears here. Third hour. We're going to talk about this opioid epidemic sweeping across the United States, to the point now this is such a crisis, that everybody either knows somebody, is related to somebody, has lost somebody due to this addiction.

Heroin, some of the prescription, the opioid weight-based prescription drugs. Something has to be done about this. We're talking about a generation of people -- and, you know, this thing transcends race. It transcends class, gender.

If we don't get our arms around it now, we might be talking ten years before we get rid of this. Now, we were able to eradicate this epidemic of heroin back in the '60s. And I don't know how they did it back then. I was a young kid back then.

But I'm hearing a lot of lip service today. I'm hearing people use it for political leverage, people running for office, people who are in office. Officeholders, politicians. Oh, yes, we need to do something about the heroin and opioid crisis in America.

And if you elect me, I will make sure we get treatment programs and blah, blah, blah.

I've seen some grants given out for pilot projects, treatment programs, but this can't just be a treatment-based remedy, ladies and gentlemen. It cannot be. Because it's too late at that point.

What are we doing early on to prevent people from slipping into this addiction?

You want to stop people before they become addicted to this and not have the heavy emphasis -- which is what we always do. We do the same thing with crime. We want to treat crime with all of this money put into somebody who is already a career criminal. It's in their DNA. It's too late.

If you're a 25-year-old and you've led nothing but a life of crime, you have no education, you have nothing to offer an employer, you're functionally illiterate, it's too late.

Now, I'm not suggesting we throw those people away. I'm saying, "I don't have the answer for that." I want to spend what little money we have for this type of thing, this intervention. Because that's what we need here with the opioid crisis. We need interventions.

Forget about solutions. Okay? Thomas Sowell reminds of that all the time: There aren't solutions to these things. There are remedies.

Because when you remedy something, what ends up is you create an issue or problem somewhere else. So intervention is what we need.

Getting back to the opioid thing: This is an article that I came across. This is the director of the Center for Disease Control. His name is Thomas Frieden. He's an MD.

How to end America's opioid epidemic. One of the most heart-breaking problems I face as CDC director is our nation's opioid crisis.

Lives, families, and communities continue to be devastated by this complex and evolving epidemic. Year after year since I've been at CDC, the drug overdose -- I'm sorry -- the drug overdose death toll in our nation has been the highest on record. In 2015, more than 52,000 Americans lost their lives from an overdose. More than 33,000 of these deaths involved a prescription or illicit opioid.

Listen to this, ladies and gentlemen, this crisis was caused in large part by decades of prescribing too many opioids for too many conditions where they provide minimal benefit. And is now made worse by wide availability of cheap, potent, and easily available illegal opioids: Heroin, illicitly made fentanyl, and other new illicit synthetic opioids.

These deadly drugs have found a ready market of people primed for addiction by misuse of prescription opioids.

Overdose deaths involving heroin more than quadrupled since 2010. And what was a slow stream of illicit fentanyl, a synthetic opioid, 50 to 100 times stronger than morphine is now a flood, with the amount of the powerful drug seized by law enforcement increasing dramatically. America is awash in opioids. Urgent action is critical.

Now, listen to this. Back to the story here. Thomas Frieden, MD, Center for Disease Control director.

Our nation's current situation reminds me of a story often told to students in public health.

Here's the story: A person on a riverbank saves one drowning person after another before stopping, exhausted to think, how can I stop people from falling into the river?

That's what I was getting at. I've talked about how we deal with criminal behavior. Instead of treating the criminal, why don't we stop people early on? Meaning, juveniles, we're talking about, right? But in this situation here, yeah, the guy is on the riverbank saving drowning folks. But at some point, you realize, I'm not doing anything here. Why don't I stop people from falling into the river, instead of trying to save people as they're drowning?

We don't have that mindset. All this money for treatment -- and I'm not suggesting that we shouldn't have treatment programs. But what about abstinence programs? Education programs to keep people from falling prey to this.

But here's another thing, doctors cause this. Not intentionally, but they're overprescribing of these highly addictive prescription painkillers. And pharmaceutical companies are behind this too. Let's not kid ourselves. And who do pharmaceutical companies give campaign donations to?

Politicians. Members of Congress. Members of state legislatures. That's why there's no will to point at. We're not having an honest discussion here, folks, when it comes to the opioid crisis.

Nobody wants to take a look at these pharmaceutical companies who are making millions and billions. And I'm not saying they should -- they shouldn't, I should say. I'm not suggesting that.

We have to take a look at the doctors who are overprescribing this. And, look, in fairness to doctors, look, you come in, you have a surgical procedure, they say, "Here, you know, take a couple of these -- and why are they giving out 30-day doses of this stuff?

Give it out for ten days and say, "If you're still in pain, call me. We'll look at something else. In the second round, we'll give you something less addictive." But it's easier for the doctor, whose offices are flooded treating patients to just say, "Hey, here's 30 days. Then I don't have to be worried with this person coming back every ten days."

I get that. But it's not helping the situation. It's making it worse. So until we begin to have an honest discussion about the -- now, doctors are saying -- forget the cop in me. We're not going to arrest our way out of this.

But the doctor says -- doctors have caused this, unintentionally, but they've caused it. We need to start having an honest discussion about this opioid crisis, or it's going to continue on.

Do we want to remedy this, or do we just want to talk good about it and use it for political leverage? This is amazing.

Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke in for Glenn Beck. This is the Glenn Beck Program. We have to take a break.

[break]

DAVID: Yep. Welcome back to the program. Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke in for Glenn Beck. This is the Glenn Beck Program.

Look, I don't want to give that opioid crisis short strokes. So I'm going to have some final comments to say on this.

This is from, again, Thomas Frieden, who is a doctor. An MD. Director for the Center for Disease Control. And he says this, in terms of straightening this thing out, he says: While we implement these emergency response strategies, it is also important that we look upstream to prevent opioid use disorder in the first place. This starts with improving how providers prescribe opioids for pain treatment.

That's an excellent starting point, he says. There are safer drugs and treatment approaches that can control pain as well or better than opioids for the vast majority of patients.

But, see, this is where the pharmaceutical companies come in. Because they're pushing out of these doctors the opioid-based prescription medicines.

Doctor goes on to say: We must reduce the number of Americans exposed to opioids for the first time, especially for conditions where the risk of opioids outweighs the benefit. In addition, state policies should facilitate better use of prescription drug monitoring program.

You see, we spend all our money downstream on treating the person once they're addicted.

He closes this out by saying, "We must not forget what got us here in the first place: doctor's prudent use of the prescription pad and renewed commitment to treat pain more safely and effectively, based on what we know now about opioids, as well as healthy awareness of the risks and benefits among patients prescribed these drugs, can change the path of the opioid epidemic.

Again, Dr. Thomas Frieden, the director for the Center of Disease Control.

Ladies and gentlemen, this guy, first of all, should be testifying on Capitol Hill. And, again, part of the problem is that politicians are just using this stuff for leverage. They know it will sell back home that, "Hey, I just got a 2 million-dollar grant for a drug treatment program for people addicted to opioid."

They know this. I think it's a sin. They listen to this guy. We can set up monitoring -- what doctors are overprescribing this?

And like I said, they're not -- I don't think there are many doctors out there -- I'm not accusing them of saying, "I want to get people hooked on this."

They're well-intentioned. But I don't care about good intentions. I care about results. And the result is like this doctor said: This stuff is being overprescribed. There are safer remedies to deal with pain. But, of course, that's not what the pharmaceutical companies want. They want the latest and the greatest. And this stuff is more expensive.

So you have to ask yourself: Do we want to fix this thing or don't we?

You know, this is something that's right up my alley in terms of giving you straight talk. You know, well, compassion. Compassion nothing.

Let's remedy this. Let's keep people from becoming hooked in the first place. Then we'll deal with those that are already hooked. Once this stuff enters into the political realm, forget about it. Forget about anything meaningful coming out of Congress. You're going to see a heavy dose of federal dollars for treatment. You will not see mechanisms in place for monitoring of doctors and pharmaceutical companies, who are peddling this stuff. These people are unintentional -- they're dope dealers. They're no different than a dope dealer.

I know some of you will freak out. What do you mean a doctor -- look, this doctor says so. Not David Clarke.

Speaking of a crisis, the crime and violence in the does he of Chicago should bring tears to the eyes of a brass monkey. This is unbelievable. To date in the city of Chicago, you talk about a crisis and you talk about remedies, 753 people have been murdered in the city of Chicago. Compare that to 492 last year.

Where's the outrageous? Periodically, you see a story here and there.

Let me tell you what goes on weekly in Chicago: Here's what happened just last weekend. Five dead. Thirteen wounded. One night.

Four dead, 15 others wounded in shootings the next night.

So nine dead, 28 people hit by gunfire. Folks, this goes on weekly, in the great city of Chicago.

Where is the outrage? I'll tell you right now, if 753 people were killed in the Ebola crisis or epidemic or a scare -- let's call it a scare -- oh, hell, you'd have news conferences every day. All the local news would be covering it. All the major news networks would be covering this.

Oh, this is horrible. Now it's up to 750 -- somebody do something.

And, by the way, over 3,000 people have been hit in non-fatal shootings in 2016 alone, ladies and gentlemen.

This stuff is staggering. I've been in law enforcement, as I indicated, for 39 years. I'm staggered by this. Chicago is only 80 miles from Milwaukee, where I live. Just 80 miles down the road.

New York has hit an increase in homicide over last year. City of New York.

Baltimore, for successive years, has hit over 300 homicides.

Milwaukee is closing in on reaching the second highest level ever in the city's history. Last year was the second highest number of homicides. This year, we're closing in on that number.

If you joined us earlier, we talked about with Heather Mac Donald, what this war of cops has done. Men and women of Chicago Police Department are under siege because of ineffective leadership by none other than Democrat liberal mayor Rahm Emanuel, who has no idea what to do here. He has no idea how to get his arms around this.

I've offered some remedies. You notice again I didn't say solutions. Some things that we did during the '90s that led to record decreases in violent crime across the country.

Record numbers of decrease in crime and violence across the country. But we stopped doing those things that worked. We got hooked into this left's myth of mass black incarceration. We stopped locking people up. We engaged in these social engineering experiments. Second chance, for habitual criminals. Habitual!

Community corrections. A reluctance to use jails and prisons as a crime control tool. Jails and prisons are a very effective crime control tool. And here you have President Obama, a friend of the criminal, a cop hater, commuting sentences in record numbers. Hardly a mention in the national media. Every once in a while, a little blurb.

Reducing the sentences of major drug dealers and people who are in possession of weapons that are prohibited, while they're peddling those drugs.

We didn't provide any pushback. You know, this stuff doesn't turn on a dime. Even if we put those effective remedies back in place today, it might be five years before we see a downturn again. You know how many people are going to be victimized by violent crime in the next five years with these numbers?

This is amazing. We got to take a break. This is Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke in for Glenn Beck. This is the Glenn Beck Program.

[break]

DAVID: Welcome back. Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke in for Glenn Beck. This is the Glenn Beck Program.

Looks like we're coming in for a smooth landing. A little turbulence along the way. But don't worry about that. You know, this is not my craft. I'm a cop by career. I'm a cop by trade. A pretty damn good one at that, I might add. But this radio stuff and TV stuff is -- is not my craft. But I enjoy it. I do it from time to time. And I really enjoy it. I hope you enjoy it as well.

If you did, I'll be back with you tomorrow. And if you didn't, come back tomorrow anyway and give me something to complain about, I guess.

I want to thank the crew here, the staff. They've been great.

You know, they realize that I'm a rookie when it comes to this, but they're very helpful. You know, they don't throw you into deeper water -- shark-infested and say, "Good luck." Very helpful. And I want to thank you for that.

Also, I want to say Merry Christmas to everybody. Always feels good to say "Merry Christmas" and not feel bashful about it. You know, this political correctness that we've been under, this country has been under, this siege for the last eight years has been horrendous. You had to go around and, you know, say "Happy Holidays" so you don't offend anybody. This move toward secularism. You know, Christmas, the birth of Christ.

And you had to said, like I said, skittish about saying it. You didn't want to offend anybody. Not that any of you were, and I know I wasn't. But, man, does it feel good. And I've heard more and more people since November just really exuberant about saying, "Merry Christmas!" It feels good. And Happy Hanukkah. As I said, we're a Judeo-Christian nation. The founding it was anyway. Not to the exclusion of any other religion.

I want to close by talking about Mrs. Bill Clinton. And she's hurting after the election, after her loss to Trump. And she's on this pity party -- this tour, this pity tour where she's going around the country talking to donors and supporters and blaming everybody except her lousy campaign for why she lost the presidential election.

Donald Trump outworked her. Donald Trump was tirelessly. They're about the same age. That guy is like the ever-ready Energizer bunny. The guy just doesn't stop. I watched him, folks. I was intricately involved in helping him getting elected. I got behind-the-scenes looks and up close and personal. And I would look at this guy, Donald Trump -- I say that affectionately -- the president-elect. And I said, "This guy doesn't stop." And I could tell early on he was going to outwork her. So she's going around, she's blaming everybody.

Remember, first she blames Jim Comey. She doesn't blame her corruption. She doesn't blame erasing 33,000 emails. She doesn't blame the secret server. She doesn't blame the Clinton Foundation. She blames Jim Comey.

Then after that, she blamed fake news. Fake news is why she lost the election. No, she ran a horrible campaign.

Then she said the other day she lost because the media didn't help her enough.

It took me a long time to stop laughing. Folks, the media was her campaign. The liberal mainstream media. They were her -- what do you mean they didn't help her enough to win? They couldn't do anymore. They couldn't do anymore to help her.

They gave her questions to the debates. They gave her stories and said, "Does this story meet with your recommendation before we go to print?" Now she says the media didn't help her enough.

Then there was the Russian hacking. Ah, the Russians did it. The Russians didn't cause her to lose the election. Even if they did hack -- and it hasn't been proven. I don't know what to believe, like I said. But even if they did hack in the DNC emails, that wasn't why she lost. Nothing in those emails that was put forth by Assange, they didn't dispute any of it. They never said, "That stuff's not true." They were just blaming hacking.

Well, guess who they're blaming now? I saw something up on the screen now, up on the monitor, up on the set here: Clinton is saying the inner city didn't come out -- they didn't help enough.

Now it's the voters. Her voters. She got 90 percent of the black vote.

What the heck is she talking about? You know what my advice to her would be? If she were my friend -- if she has any real friends, you know what they should do? They should go to her and say, "You know why you lost? Here, let me walk you over here." And put her in front of a mirror.

She's why she lost. But, of course, with her it's always somebody else's fault. Accepts no responsibility. Slept -- slept during most of the campaign. Every time you turn around, she was reported to take a nap. Well, she's going to have plenty of time to nap now, isn't she?

This is amazing. So we'll keep an eye on this electoral college. It's supposed to be meeting at noon Eastern time across the country. And closing this thing out, the left has scheduled protests -- there are scheduled protests across the nation prior to this election -- or the electoral college. They're still trying to put pressure on the electors. That is a federal crime. It's just not being investigated. But Donald Trump is going to get the required number of electors to finally seal this thing.

We still are not going to be able to move forward because, with the left, it's never over. It's never final. They're going to do everything they can to slow him down, to delegitimize his presidency. He's going to need our help. Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke in for Glenn Beck. This is the Glenn Beck Radio Program. It's been my pleasure. God bless you.

Featured Image: Bags of heroin, some laced with fentanyl, are displayed before a press conference regarding a major drug bust, at the office of the New York Attorney General, September 23, 2016 in New York City. New York State Attorney General Eric Scheiderman's office announced Friday that authorities in New York state have made a record drug bust, seizing 33 kilograms of heroin and 2 kilograms of fentanyl. According to the attorney general's office, it is the largest seizure in the 46 year history of New York's Organized Crime Task Force. Twenty-five peopole living in New York, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Arizona and New Jersey have been indicted in connection with the case. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Would Glenn make a better bounty hunter or a Jedi? You'll have to find out in a new episode of the Beltway Banthas Podcast, where Glenn goes deep on Star Wars with host Stephen Kent. In this 45 minute discussion, Stephen and Glenn explore the political themes of the Star Wars franchise, Darth Vader's redemption from Return of the Jedi, Glenn's earliest memories of seeing the films and even debate elements of the latest Star Wars films.

If you enjoy the pop culture and nerdy discussions that Glenn, Pat and Stu get into on the radio show, you'll love this! After you're through, you can also check out Stu Burguiere's appearance on Beltway Banthas to talk Star Wars. You can find that here.


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Then again, it's a tote. So, it'll end up on the floor of your closet and you won't have it with you until that one random moment when you're out somewhere and you really need a tote bag. Just like Democrats will really wish they had a moderate when we're in the middle of the socialist nightmare of their creation.

Captain Planet himself, Jay Inslee recently dropped out of the race, but don't let that stop you from picking up what may be the greatest single item sold by anyone in this race…


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A children's book called Elvis & the Elves: the Mystery of the Melting Snow. Written and illustrated by Governor Jay Inslee. Talk about a whodunnit – how could that snow possibly be melting? Spoiler alert: it's because of evil, white, patriarchal capitalism. And Donald Trump.

Then there's the candidate who thinks you're a moron that can't pronounce his last name: Steve Bullock...


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When your last name's Castro, do you really want to go with a weird drawing of yourself as if you're a classic Latin American dictator on a postage stamp?

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https://store.marianne2020.com/collections/signs/products/love-rally-sign


"Turn Love Into a Political Force" would be an even better title for a Marianne Williamson album of 80s cover songs. And if you think I'm joking, then you haven't heard Bernie Sanders' classic 1987 folk album, We Shall Overcome. That's not a joke. Well, it is a joke, but it's also a very real thing.

Now, just a quick pause to consider the peculiar baby-wear that way too many candidates are selling…

…including Elizabeth Warren's trans-pride flag onesie. Let me get this straight – we can't force any gender on a child, because that's just cruel. But we can force a political advertisement on a baby? How do we know that baby is actually a Biden or Warren fan? The child may not even be a Democrat or a Socialist at all. That baby might self-identify as a Libertarian, or Republican, or even worse – a moderate Democrat.

Now to the premium items from the premium candidates. Elizabeth Warren – the candidate with the most honesty in her advertising…


https://shop.elizabethwarren.com/collections/apparel/products/impolite-arrogant-women-make-history-unisex-t-shirt

-AND-

https://shop.elizabethwarren.com/collections/drinkware/products/strong-american-unions-mug


Warren's merchandise reflects the woman herself – cold and humorless (watch her "This isn't funny" clip from the last debate here at the 4:27 mark). I'm sure she's really fun once you get to know her. Then again, maybe not.

Speaking of serious women, Kamala Harris wants to be president very badly for you, the people, as you can tell from her "For the People" poster…


https://store.kamalaharris.org/poster-for-the-people/


At $29.99 though, she's sure not charging "people's" prices. Of course, she might be having to pay royalties to a certain someone for riffing on their poster. Just saying.

For the race's number one socialist, there's a whole lot of capitalism going on in Bernie Sanders' campaign. He sells so many delightful items that it's hard to choose. But we did anyway. The most random item is this hundred-dollar, black, "Art of a Political Revolution – Artists for Bernie Sanders Coaches Jacket"…


https://store.berniesanders.com/collections/apparel/products/artists-for-bernie-coaches-jacket


Coaches across the land will be clamoring for this one. You know, since coaches are such a strong Bernie-socialist demographic.

If that's a little over your budget you might consider a "Feel the Bern" fanny pack, to help store all those government freebies you'll get from Bernie…


https://store.berniesanders.com/collections/apparel/products/feel-the-bern-fanny-pack


This is the only context in which you'll ever want to hear "feel the burn" and "fanny" in the same sentence.

And finally, from front-runner Joe Biden, we have this fine "Women's Fitted Biden Polo." Which is just about the best polo description ever…


https://store.joebiden.com/collections/apparel/products/biden-polo-womens-fit


It promises the kind of snug approach that Biden loves to provide women. Even when they don't ask.

This was one of the first homesteads in the area in the 1880's and was just begging to be brought back to its original glory — with a touch of modern. When we first purchased the property, it was full of old stuff without any running water, central heat or AC, so needless to say, we had a huge project ahead of us. It took some vision and a whole lot of trust, but the mess we started with seven years ago is now a place we hope the original owners would be proud of.

To restore something like this is really does take a village. It doesn't take much money to make it cozy inside, if like me you are willing to take time and gather things here and there from thrift shops and little antique shops in the middle of nowhere.

But finding the right craftsman is a different story.

Matt Jensen and his assistant Rob did this entire job from sketches I made. Because he built this in his off hours it took just over a year, but so worth the wait. It wasn't easy as it was 18"out of square. He had to build around that as the entire thing we felt would collapse. Matt just reinforced the structure and we love its imperfections.

Here are a few pictures of the process and the transformation from where we started to where we are now:

​How it was

It doesn't look like much yet, but just you wait and see!

By request a photo tour of the restored cabin. I start doing the interior design in earnest tomorrow after the show, but all of the construction guys are now done. So I mopped the floors, washed the sheets, some friends helped by washing the windows. And now the unofficial / official tour.

The Property

The views are absolutely stunning and completely peaceful.