Closed Door

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Part 49

Dear Diary, 

I had to look it up, it’s just been bugging the tar out of me.  Daddy and Papa would probably be upset that I had to; on the other hand they always told me to never be too proud to ask or search for answers when you had questions, even if you thought they sounded stupid. 

I needed to know what martial law is supposed to be.  After looking into it I figured out what had been bothering me so much.  According to the encyclopedia, dictionary, and a couple of other sources … martial law is the temporary imposition of military rule by military authorities over designated regions whereby civilians can be prosecuted by military authorities under both civilian and military law.  But I look around and I don’t see that it is the military who is enforcing the majority of the martial law around here, it is the alphabet groups out of DC which means that it isn’t a military authority running the show but a federal one.  Even the military seems to be under some duress in this situation.  Something is very wrong with this. 

There was a brief mention that the pentagon closed itself off from the Executive Branch … basically the President and the Whitehouse and that some members of Congress (the Legislative Branch) were acting as go betweens, trying to smooth things over.  There hasn’t been much mention of it since but I get the feeling by reading between the lines of what legitimate news we do manage to get that the situation isn’t improving.  Someone thinks that the President is overstepping his Constitutional authority and they are trying to assure that the country doesn’t devolve into civil war … or so thinks Cal. 

I mean there hasn’t been a real set of checks and balances in years, at least not like there is supposed to be.  Executive Orders issued by the President have usurped power from both the Judicial and Legislative branches since before I was born.  If I hadn’t been brought up to know that this was bad then I probably wouldn’t recognize it.  I know a lot of the kids I grew up with didn’t – probably still don’t – understand just how bad it is when checks and balances are gone.  Without it, and with a less than ethical person heading the Executive Branch, we wind up with something that is looking more and more like a dictatorship … or at least less and less like the Republic we are supposed to be. 

For now there is nothing that I can do about it.  I say for now because I don’t know what the future holds.  I’m not even sure what I’m prepared to do if an opportunity does present itself.  I’m the only one that Feena has … besides Cal.  And God help me for saying so but I wonder at how eager Cal is sometimes for something to happen.  It isn’t that he is exactly looking forward to it; he’s just looks forward to what we have now remaining in place even less. 

If, God forbid, a revolution of some type does happen I am fairly certain that he’ll want to be in the thick of it.  I don’t know why I am so certain of that.  He’s never said it.  But to be honest I’m too … too scared to ask.  I’m too afraid to hear what his answer would be to the question.  So I put it off and I try my best on one hand not to think of it and on the other to learn to live with it and try and plan for the day he might not be here. 

At home I’m taking as much advantage of the ration cards as I can although I can’t use Cal’s, you have to show picture ID and it has to match the name on the ration EBT card.  On top of that there is a regional ID in the works, perhaps a national one.  I’m not quite sure what to make of it because they are talking amnesty for all illegal aliens at the same time.  The idea is for them to accept amnesty or to get out.  If they accept it they will owe the government “x” amount of dollars for every year they’ve been in the country illegally.   If they don’t accept amnesty and don’t get out (at their expense) and are caught … well the implied threat was greater than I remember it ever being to enforce the existing immigration laws.  I guess now that it is their idea it becomes important.  And it also means that with amnesty they may think they have a lot of new voters that can … oh whatever.  I hate this kind of politicking; it always gives me a rancid headache.   

I have to tell you that down at the carneceria there is a lot of hushed talk; hushed so that even I can’t hear it.  This makes me sad because it says that I’ve become an outsider.  Whether it is because of Cal being a cop or something inherent in me that they were willing to overlook before and cannot now, I don’t know.  I’ve lived here longer than most of them, I’ve given them my trade just like my father and grandfather before me … and still I’m not “inside.”   

In turn it has made me leery.  Who do I trust?  Dorrie is even quieter than before.  She avoids some of my questions before I even ask them.  Even Cal asked the other day what was up with her, if she was sick or something.  I want to ask until I get a straight answer, but just like with Cal, I’m stuck because I’m afraid of knowing what the answer is. 

I know that some of this is actually going back to the old way I used to think when things with Daniel were just starting to go wrong.  I remember all the things that Pastor used to tell me, that I had to stop always thinking everything was my fault for two reasons.  One because that was disregarding God’s authority; and two, because it was taking on too much authority for myself, in essence making myself the center of the universe and the cause of everything.  I pulled out the old counseling pamphlets that I got during Celebrate Recovery and I’m rereading them.  A refresher is helping.  I think I’ve caught it early enough that I can avoid most of the self-made misery that I invested in before.  But it is so hard not to get discouraged and not to feel like people are going to leave me again. 

Maybe they need to leave.  Maybe something in me is driving them; I’m not always easy to get along with.  Maybe I’m not providing something they need.  I would if I just knew what it was.  Or maybe I’m just incapable of … 

That’s enough.  Deep, calming breath.  Refocus that thought train Aria.  Find the positives even when things are beyond your control.  What constructive things are you doing?  What are you doing to help yourself?     

OK, here goes; it may not exactly seem like a positive but it is to me because it says that I’ve still got options.  I’m trying to max out my debit card use every day but on non-food items.  I don’t like using my debit card because all of my transactions can be traced but there are limits on cash withdrawals on a weekly and monthly basis.  And it is next to impossible to cash a check these days because the IRS wants all paychecks to go direct deposit.  But I’m getting creative and am trying to overcome the new additional rules. 

This situation has been a big problem for the under the table workers and the immigrants that rarely have bank accounts.  It is also a problem for people that have been blacklisted from getting a bank account due to bad credit.  If I think Cal and I are in a world of hurt, that’s nothing compared to a lot of other people.  At least he and I have separate bank accounts at different financial institutions; this helps us get around the new rules a bit.  It is a positive that our strategy has started to pay off.  Our buying power as a team is greater. 

Hard cash is being squeezed out of the local economy.  I don’t know for sure what it is like in other places but it would seem to be the same way based on news reports.  The government keeps issuing reports of how much money we are all saving by going “cash less” but in truth we’d save more money if the government would stop doing its ridiculous studies and wasting time on reports that aren’t much more than reprints of what the people in power want them to say.

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