by Burt Prelutsky

Until Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain killed themselves, I had never heard of either of them, no doubt because I have no interest in fashion designers or food critics. Judging by the attention their deaths inspired, they were well-known and widely admired by millions of people.

What mystified their fans was that two people who had achieved fame, fortune and great success in their chosen fields, both of them relatively young, decided to hang themselves.

In the aftermath, I learned that most of the murders that take place in America are suicides. In fact, there are very few diseases that kill as many people as this mysterious thing called depression.

Just for the sake of clarity, I think a name change is in order. We all experience an emotion that used to be called depression and was normal in that it was usually brought on by the death of a loved one, a spouse, parent, sibling, friend or pet. It was temporary in nature. One might go on for years missing the person or the pet, but over time it passed from grief to regret.

But, suddenly, the word began to be used about people like Robin Williams, Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain, who seemed to have the world by the tail, but wound up using the tail as a noose.

We need a new word in order to distinguish between someone who says he’s depressed because his favorite sports team didn’t make the playoffs and the person who says he’s depressed because in spite of having everything to live for fails to see the point of living.

It brought home for me something I’d told my son when he was a little boy. I explained that it was okay to admire someone he didn’t know personally -- be it an actor, an athlete, an astronaut or a rock star -- but he should never think how wonderful it would be to switch places with them because he could never know what their actual lives were like.

It also reminded me of something that Brit Hume said recently and which I quoted at the time in another article. But in view of recent events, it bears repeating: “Everybody you know is fighting battles you know nothing about. Be kind. Be kind.”

At the time, I didn’t know the source of his wisdom. It took my friend Dr. Harry Maller of Prescott, Arizona, to inform me that in 1998, Brit’s son Sandy, an alcoholic, committed suicide at the age of 28.

⦿  As I write this, the meeting in Singapore is just getting underway. I have no idea how it will turn out. I find it hard to believe that Kim Jong-un will agree to dismantle his nuclear and missile programs, but when confronted face-to-face with reality, even Muamar Ghaddafi changed his ways, so anything is possible.

But it was telling that the fake media chided President Trump for claiming he didn’t need to study up for his meeting with the North Korean despot.

He didn’t actually say that he didn’t need to bring himself up to speed, even though that’s how it was reported. What he said at the time was that he had been preparing for a long time, meaning he didn’t need to cram at the last second like a lazy, panic-stricken, college student the night before an exam.

I can’t help thinking that if I were a journalist instead of a commentator, I would be ashamed to share the same space as the White House Press Corps. When they pretend that someone as accomplished as Donald Trump is a dunce when it comes to foreign relations, they also have to pretend that smart, hard-headed, advisors like Mike Pompeo and John Bolton are mere window dressing.

Do they really think that liar-Bill Clinton and Barack liar-nObama displayed major negotiating chops when the former provided Kim’s father with wheat, oil and money, in exchange for empty promises; and the latter handed over $150 billion in cold hard cash to Iran just so liar-nObama could brag that he’d worked out a meaningless deal with the mullahs?

⦿  It’s not true, as many of you believe, that Hollywood’s Communists are a recent development. After all, Charlie Chaplin; Paul Robeson; Dalton Trumbo; Albert Maltz; Ring Lardner, Jr; Edward Dmytryk; Paul Jarrico; John Howard Lawson; Adrian Scott; Kim Hunter; Will Geer; Jeff Corey; and Lillian Hellman, were all card-carrying members of the Party.

I’m not here to argue whether they deserved to lose their livelihoods because, in many cases, these actors, writers and directors, were simply hoodwinked by the media -- particularly the NY Times -- serving as the propaganda arm of the Soviet Union.

I do believe they displayed a great deal of naiveté in believing that Joseph Stalin was the slightest bit benevolent, but Hollywood, going back to the days of silent movies, has been a magnet for people whose occasional talent has been consistently offset by their egos and their ignorance.

⦿  When I received an email from a longtime subscriber Patrick Miano, of Phoenix, Arizona, letting me know that he was sick and tired of hearing Canada, Mexico and the nations of Western Europe, being described as our friends and allies, I let him know that I had long shared his outrage. I told him that I had already written myself a note to that effect.

I am now paying off on that promissory note.

I don’t know what the rest of you expect from your friends, but I suspect that a reasonable degree of loyalty would be high on the list.

But, what have we received from any of those nations, aside from their contempt? Please don’t bring up World War II, a war which never really threatened us. Heck, the Nazis couldn’t even get across the English Channel to invade Great Britain. Not much chance they were going to make it all the way across the Atlantic.

However, it was mainly the United States that supplied the weaponry and manpower to defeat the Axis powers.

In the wake of the war, it was the U.S. that helped get Europe, including a demolished Germany, back on its feet, as well as rebuilding Japan. Cynics might point out that we wanted a revived world economy that could afford to buy our products, but they would do well to remember that for several years, we were the only ones with an atomic bomb. Had we been the imperialists that the pinheads insist we are, we would have been fully capable of conquering the world in a way that England, France, Spain, Portugal, Holland, Italy, the Soviet Union, even ancient Greece and Rome, could only have dreamed of doing.

These days, we can’t even count on Mexico to prevent their peasants from invading us. As for those other great friends and allies, when is the last time we could depend on any of them even voting with us at the U.N.?

The notion that Trump should use kid gloves when dealing with these snots is absurd. Angela Merkel, with her open-door policy where Muslims are concerned, has done more to ruin Germany than anyone since Hitler. Theresa May has outlawed free speech in her country, jailing a reporter for merely reporting on the trial of young Islamists accused of gang-raping English women.

As for Justin Trudeau, the male model running Canada, where does he get off criticizing Trump for placing 20% tariffs on Canadian steel and 15% on Canadian aluminum? Canada, in case it’s slipped his mind, places a 275% tariff on most American dairy products, 300% on our butter.

Inasmuch as we are always at the head of the line when other nations experience a natural disaster, how is it that when we experience earthquakes, hurricanes, forest fires, tidal waves and cyclones, we don’t see any of them rushing over to give us a helping hand?

⦿  Speaking of injustices, it’s bad enough that notables are always evading punishment, but could we at least have a moratorium on those goofballs who keep insisting that our laws are worth the paper they’re written on.

Aside from the 20 million or more illegal aliens who are permanently settled inside our borders -- and not just in the unconstitutional sanctuary cities and states run by Democrats, which makes an absolute farce of our legal system, -- we have all those celebrities and political officials who rarely face the penalties the rest of us do.

Just a partial list would include hanoi-Jane Fonda; Ted Kennedy; the three liar-Clintons involved in the money-laundering enterprise known as the liar-Clinton Foundation; Robert McDonnell; Robert Menendez; and even O.J. Simpson, at least until the big dummy pressed his luck.

Even former congressman Charley Rangel was only censured by the House for a series of financial crimes including not paying his income taxes. Which of us wouldn’t love to be allowed to get off with a censure if we decided not to send a check to the politically-biased schmucks at the IRS?

⦿  Speaking of lawbreakers, I have become somewhat addicted to TV’s “Forensic Files.”  What I like about the show is that in just 30 minutes, less if you fast-forward through commercials, they show you a recreation of a seemingly unsolvable crime and then show how forensic scientists worked to determine how and by whom the crime was committed. Invariably, the show ends by showing footage of the actual trial and the sentence being pronounced. I am always a sucker for a happy ending, although I would be even happier if more of the killers and serial rapists faced execution instead of life sentences.

In one case, a guy murdered his wife after sending her threatening messages in order to persuade the cops that she was being stalked by the person who eventually bludgeoned her to death.

In this case, it wasn’t only trace evidence that tripped him up. A language expert who was shown the letters along with examples of other things the husband had written discovered a similarity in style he had never before encountered. The guy would only use contractions when he was writing something negative, as in “He’s a jerk” or “She’d have been a terrible mother.” But when he had something positive to say, he always spelled the words out: “He is a great neighbor” or “She is a wonderful person.”

The expert had never come across that grammatical idiosyncrasy before. It helped convince the jury that the guy had written the letters and murdered his wife.

Sometimes, even though it ultimately requires forensic science to convince a jury, one can only marvel at the stupidity of some criminals. In a case I watched last night, the killer had stolen his victim’s credit cards. The first time he tried to use one of them, he tipped his mitt by signing his own name on the receipt.

It was delightfully reminiscent of the bank robber who passed the teller a note demanding that she hand over all the money in her cash drawer.

What the goofus didn’t realize was that he’d written the message on the back of an envelope addressed to him.

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 Dem Governor Threatens Trump: “Something’s Got To Happen To This Guy… He’s Sabotaging The World Order”

“If we don’t get rid of him, he’s going to undermine America and even the world.”

Another Democrat has called for ‘something to happen’ to President Trump in order to save the democratic process in America.

California Gov. Jerry Brown made the comments during an appearance on MSNBC, while discussing the death toll during hurricanes last year in Puerto Rico.

“Well, the problem is, we never had a president who was engaged in this kind of behavior,” Brown declared.

“I mean he’s not telling the truth. He keeps changing his mind. He’s sabotaging the world order in many respects.” the Governor claimed.

“So it’s unprecedented, it’s dangerous, and hopefully this election is going to send a strong message to the country,” he continued.

“The Democrats will win and then Trump — well, something’s got to happen to this guy, because if we don’t get rid of him, he’s going to undermine America and even the world.” Brown urged.

The tacit threat comes in the wake of Maxine Waters encouraging anti-Trumpers to “knock off” the President.

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