In my humble opinion there are two key issues above all else Democrats should focus on; health care, and the hollowing out of the middle class or in a word, wages. Many articles have been written about American health care. Writers compare our system to other countries, talk about our costs being higher then everyone else and complain about unaffordable access. All of that is true.

As regards wages, the American economy is working great for the folks at the top or more specifically those who have gotten great raises and invest heavily in the market. Those who live paycheck to paycheck have not done well at all. The recent tax changes, which in some cases gave workers bonuses by their companies was welcomed, but frankly I doubt a bonus of a thousand dollars was enough to pay off the accumulated credit card debt of most middle class Americans.

As most know by now I was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s (ALZ for short) in the spring of last year. After a recent trip back to Mayo’s I find there is a difference of opinion from various Neurologists as to exactly what I have, the diagnosis’s range from early ALZ to Vascular Dementia to Mild Cognitive Impairment. I have been told the discrepancy arises because I am bright enough (me, not really sure of that) to do very well on all the written and verbal tests, but the brain scans show something worse. I have also determined I am far from alone in this pickle of not being sure what I have. Many others are facing the same problem. For me this raises the issue of how important research is on determining all facets of the disease and how to deal with it. My son says we will only know after I die and an autopsy is performed; think I will try to wait a while for that.

                           A Movement With Major Implications

Sometimes elections are about movements; in my view the 2016 election was certainly that. Lots of issues came together to defeat Hillary Clinton, but the rise of a disgruntled white, working class made up of semi skilled males was the core of the movement. With Hillary writing lengthily policy proposals on tons of issues and her opponent issuing a four word message, ‘Make America Great Again”, it was going to be a tough road because most marketing experts will tell you the short version always sells better. Those issues plus a little input from the Russians, and there you have it.

                   Alzheimer’s, A Process of Watching “Doerness” Dissolve

So what do I mean by this made up word “doerness”. I mean one who is a doer, one who gets things done on or before they need to be done. I have been the doer in the family, but my Alzheimer’s is slowly, but surely eroding my “doerness” ability. Examples are: my ability to arrive before its time has eroded because I’m not the driver and many times we arrive on time or a little late. That drives me crazy because I always arrived early.

I now see things that need to be done, but I find I can wait and do them later and then sometimes forget about them all together. Pill taking always happened first thing in the morning. I am now at a point where if I get morning pills taken before noon I feel I have accomplished something. A few weeks ago the physical therapist gave me a folder of physical exercises I am supposed to be doing, but didn’t start for almost two weeks.

I know it seems a long way off, but I am an optimist, so put on your 3 D glasses and go to the movies with me, here is what I see (or generally hope to see). It is a review of what politics and the Presidency might look like after the 2020 elections. It’s not utopia, but it’s pretty good and even possibly attainable.

A new president, (I am non-partisan in this exercise, so it could be someone like Mitt Romney or a mirror image of Bush 1, not Bush 2 in this dream sorry-he got us into a war) has just been elected. Point being a well-qualified person from either party (my personal pick-Joe Biden in a New York minute -but I digress.)

As a political junkie, when I am not listening to the machinations and Tweets of Donald Trump, I find myself listening to Dems continuously berate themselves over the last election. Some blame Hillary, some blame the party apparatus, and many blame the Russians or WikiLeaks. So far no one, except Trump, has foisted blame on a 400 lb. fat guy operating out of his bedroom.

I just have one basic question to all the Democrats as they hand ring. Given all the problems of the Democrat party, compared to the Republican Party, which one has the most problems to overcome? In my view the Dems are in a water balloon fight with one other and R’s are in a gunfight with real bullets.

I wrote this origionally for the Daily Democrat, an online publication in Iowa.I offer it here for my blog readers.

Bear with me for a bit and let’s do a little pretending. Let’s assume a portion

of the Democratic party was high-jacked by some very left-wing radicals, beyond socialist and very dogmatic. Let’s further assume that a very poor, very left wing (sometimes), very charismatic (occasionally) person with a giant ego who lied about almost everything (most of the time) somehow got the Democratic nomination and at first blush we just gritted our teeth and tried to make the best of it. Then, even beyond expectations, this person won the Presidency and we held both the House and Senate--we are now in charge!

After lengthy litigation, seven months ago the courts dismissed the Des Moines Water Works lawsuit against 3 northern Iowa drainage districts. Although the lawsuit was set aside, the problem of polluted waterways in Iowa continues.

The issue breaks down into 3 parts:

On a Sunday morning in late September, I stood on the state capitol grounds before the Walk To End Alzheimer’s started and looked out over a sea of purple, the color for the event worn by thousands of attendees. The walk drew those diagnosed with the disease, friends, family and a host of others concerned about it.

As one diagnosed with the disease in the spring of this year, the walk was a very important event for my family and I and a number of great friends who joined us.

A diagnosis of Alzheimer’s is different then most other major diseases. A disease that affects one’s cognitive ability is just plan scary and in my conversations with many friends, I find that a lot are afraid they may have it or might aquire it.

There is continuous disagreement between the R’s and the D’s over taxes and expenditures and the next fight looming in Congress looks like it will be over revamping the tax code. The R’s want to reduce income, or at minimum not increase revenue per the amount received from the top 1% of taxpayers. At the same time a large percentage of the Federal budget is spent on Medicare/Medicaid and Social Security for baby boomers like me.                                                                                                          Because of the continuous disagreement over tax and budget issues, departments within the Federal government including over 50 Federal Law Enforcement agencies have a difficult time determining their own budgets and therefore what services they can provide to meet constituent needs.