THE TIME HAS COME! by Milt Hankins, Publisher/Editor

THE TIME HAS COME! by Milt Hankins, Publisher/Editor

I wish I were telling you about the marvelous success we continue to have at this point in the publication of Columnist With a View; but, unfortunately I’m not about that this evening. I’m deeply saddened because it’s all over.

During the  two and a half years of publishing and editing our webzine, we did have some enormous successes. We were able to give voice all around the United States and abroad to so many who might never have been read. It was a great joy to do that. We published articles, stories and poetry from people who never expected ever to be published; and, we brought a smile to the faces of many who contributed to and read our on-line magazine.

For the past six months, Deborah and I have been wracking our brains to figure out how we could continue to afford to publish; but the truth is, we came to the place where we simply could no longer handle the expenses without going into our meager savings. We almost literally begged for help, even establishing a Go Fund Me account, but the balance came to $10.00 which I…I mean myself…contributed as “seed” money. We tried a Facebook Fund account, but they did not accept us.

Let’s face it, I love Columnist With a View, and I believe it made a real contribution to many, many people who enjoyed it. It was a life-long dream, and I absolutely hate to give it up. But, as I pointed out to Deb, even some big New York magazines have folded because they could no longer support themselves! Not saying we were a big New York magazine–oh, you know what I mean. It’s no disgrace to fail in the publishing business.

So, we’re folding it up. I suppose it might stay on-line for a period of time–I don’t know. It depends on when our domain shuts down for lack of payment or our IT guy shuts it down for lack of payment. Today, we cancelled the automatic payment for our IT guy. Roosevelt, thanks so much for all you did to keep us going, but we just can’t do it anymore.

Thanks, folks, for all your contributions and your readership and your “shares” and your helping us grow to 20,000 people around the globe!

There is still one hope. I might decide to do all of the set-up work myself through a blog-site and still write. I think anyone can do that without all the expense of purchasing a domain name and having someone maintain it. I’ll have to talk about it with some friends who have a blog. We’ll see.  Bye-bye!



Let’s face it. Human beings generally prefer familiar environments and people. We seem to be wired that way. Infants smile earliest and most frequently at their mothers’ faces. People often choose to live in areas where people look, think and talk like themselves.

With an innate tendency to seek commonalities with others, people often have to be reminded that those who are different aren’t bad, but rather dissimilar. However, it is rather easy to convince individuals that different is dangerous and encourage hate. It’s been done for ages and when leaders, such as President Trump, take this stance, followers who knew it wasn’t acceptable to show their prejudices recognize that it’s now fine to let their “inner” hate out.

It’s not that we Americans previously haven’t expressed our utter dislike for those of other racial and religious groups. Native Americans were first to receive such treatment. African-Americans had to deal with slavery, inhumane treatment and lynchings. We wanted Asians to build our transcontinental railroads, but we didn’t want them to live here. When many Irish and Italian Catholics and European Jews began arriving, they were not welcome.

Economic stressors often give rise to prejudice and racial and religious hate. There is a fear that “those different people” will take over their work opportunities or social values. It’s what is playing out now and what led to America’s more restrictive immigration laws in the 1920s. The same fears provided a rationale for Hitler’s rise to power after that country’s WWI loss.

Hitler was able to convince millions of good Germans that Germans who were Jewish and who had resided in Germany for hundreds of years suddenly needed to not only be removed from his nation, but from the face of the earth.


He legitimized hate and his followers, who needed an explanation for their problems, accepted his virulent anti-Semitism as the answer.

Even in countries where people’s appearances are similar, there are still differences among groups. It’s how clans and tribes are organized. It might even explain how West Virginia, a state that sees itself as unique, has traditionally had such regionalism that has inhibited statewide growth.

In countries and regions where the population has been homogeneous, acceptance of foreigners varies. Sometimes, small groups of immigrants, who readily adapt to the host groups’ values and cultural norms, are acknowledged neutrally or even positively.

Yet, when masses of immigrants try to enter an established or homogeneous group, problems occur. The newcomers often attempt to continue their own social and cultural disharmonious with their new environment. This is  happening around the world now as millions flee from the Middle East and Africa. 

Most advanced and stable nations recognize that there must be an orderly flow to immigration, but that new ambitious people are often needed to grow a country. It’s how America was formed and many European countries found they needed new immigrants to meet their labor demands.

Immigration isn’t a new problem for our nation. It actually was an issue in 1798 with the Alien and Sedition Acts. It will always be a concern here as there will always be people clamoring to enter our wonderful, but imperfect country.

What we Americans must understand is that when a nation’s leader expresses hate or clear prejudiced opinions of national, ethnic, religious groups or even handicapped people, it legitimatizes hate and permits those who follow the leader to express similar sentiments. How sad it is that our American president has done just that.

[Diane W. Mufson is a retired psychologist who lives with her husband Maury in Huntington, West Virgina. Her email is This article first appeared in the Huntington, WV Herald-Dispatch on January 25, 2018. We have, with permission, occasionally reprinted articles by Mufson which we found to be especially important and worthy of the widest possible distribution.] 



The U.S. Senate is reportedly considering a healthcare bill, although few will admit to seeing it or knowing its contents. Rumors indicate it will not, as hoped, be a “kinder, gentler” version of the House bill. There’s been a great deal of criticism of the direct effects of the House bill including, but not limited to, tens of millions without insurance, astronomical cost increases for seniors and those with pre-existing conditions, inability to get coverage for preexisting conditions, watered-down coverage (with many standard situations not covered) and loss of support for those in nursing homes. However, I’ve heard little regarding the effects on those not included above.

Please note the following is not deeply researched, but largely the product of my own logical process and as such could be far from accurate. I’d love feedback from those more deeply-informed than I.

Let’s imagine an employed head of family with a spouse and two children. Insurance for this family is provided by his/her employer and deducted from his/her paycheck. In fact, both spouses enjoy this benefit, so if one loses his/her job, there’s a back-up plan. This happy family is probably laboring under the illusion that they have nothing to fear. I believe this is far from the truth!

The disappearance of billions of dollars from medical payments will impact clinics and hospitals. Personnel will be laid off and programs will be cut. Wait-time for all services will be longer and some “frills” will disappear. If you need a class on dealing with your child’s juvenile diabetes, for instance, it may no longer be offered as often or not at all. If it takes you a month to get an appointment with your doctor now, that wait may double. If you child falls off the playground equipment and breaks an arm, the emergency room visit may stretch to eight hours as opposed to four.


Ted Chan, founder of Care Dash, an online site for feedback on doctors, (yeah, I did some research!) was quoted in Becker’s Hospital Review on March 9, 2017, as saying: 

“Repealing the Affordable Care Act (ACA) without clear guidelines for replacing coverage will drive up costs across the board for patients, employers, and hospitals. Without requiring all to be insured, hospitals will be the insurers of last resort and will absorb the costs of uninsured patients seeking care. One recent study found that half of hospital bills go unpaid and that will only likely increase without an individual mandate….

When hospital bills go unpaid, taxpayers and local governments are often forced to pick up the tab. The question is not whether healthcare coverage should be paid for, it’s who pays.”


If you live in a rural area, the impact may be even greater, as rural medical services are economically tenuous. With fewer patients to serve and more low-income individuals, tight budgets are a constant. Under the ACA, there were supposed to be provisions to help rural medical programs, but many of these provisions were revised or never implemented.

Our happy fictional family may find their medical costs increase despite their insured status. When a family isn’t insured, that doesn’t mean they don’t get sick! They do, however, wait longer to seek treatment, present as sicker when they do go to the doctor, and their treatment is therefore more expensive. Since the bill is less likely to be paid, the hospital must recoup as much as possible in the form of increased costs for those WITH insurance. When insurance companies pay more, they’re going to raise the cost of their policies. Our fictional family will pay in increased insurance costs.

People who don’t have insurance are more costly employees. Since they can’t afford preventive care, they’re more likely to be sicker and miss additional time at work. (I’d prefer they NOT work, since someone coughing over my fast-food order is not something I relish!) I suspect this was one original motivation for employer-sponsored healthcare coverage.

Therefore, Fictional Family will be affected directly by the proposed healthcare bill. The medical services they need may well become harder to access, their health insurance costs increase, and their communities become a less pleasant and welcoming place to live.


Deborah G. Hankins is a retired “worker” who lives with her husband Milt and their little chihuahua Jose in Ashland, Kentucky. She is a leader in the local “Indivisible” group and is seriously concerned about our future under the present administration.  





I am old enough to remember pre-integration days in my hometown of Louisville, Kentucky. Segregation to me, as a young boy, seemed perfectly normal. It was dimply how things were done, how things were, and, since our neighborhood, Crescent Hill, was completely white, I seldom saw a “Negro” unless I rode the bus downtown or went through the black neighborhood in West Central Louisville. In my mind, “they” hardly existed.


Our schools were segregated, of course, but so were churches, theatres, restaurants, parks, amateur and professional sports, restrooms, trains, swimming pools, water fountains, neighborhoods: everything. When Negroes got on a city bus or trolley car, they automatically moved to the rear before taking a seat.

Such was true throughout the American South and in parts of the North, as well. As late as the early 1960s, for example, I visited a small town in Northern Indiana that had signs posted at the city limits warning Negroes that they had to be out-of-town by sunset — believe it or not!

                A SEGREGATED STREET

When I was a boy of about twelve, I was with my mother visiting her sister in Washington, D.C. As we were leaving D.C., we crossed over the Potomac into Arlington, Virginia on a Trailways bus, and the driver pulled into a small parking area. Now that we were entering “The South,” all the black riders who had been sitting near the front of the bus had to get up and move to the rear — while all the white riders who may have been sitting in the rear had to move closer to the front. Then the bus continued on further south.

It seems unbelievable to me today, but that is how it was. I guess that is one reason why I’m still a little surprised when someone who did not live back then tries to tell me that not much has changed since those pre-integration days.

Many racist attitudes are still in place, to be sure; but in a legal sense, the changes have been very great; indeed, and who would say the changes have not been for the better!





DID YOU KNOW that despite the president and his Press Secretary Sean Spicer’s assertions, Paul Manafort played a primary role in the Trump campaign and the Republican National Convention?


DID YOU KNOW that Paul Manafort lived in Trump Tower before he became Trump’s campaign manager? [The Daily Beast]

DID YOU KNOW that Paul Manafort “worked for a Russian billionaire with a plan to ‘greatly benefit the Putin Government?'” [Washington, Associated Press, March 23, 2017]

DID YOU KNOW that, according to the Associated Press, Paul Manafort received millions of dollars from Russia to influence American politics and businesses? He drew no salary for his Trump campaign work. 

DID YOU KNOW that Donald Trump said that Paul Manafort “had done a great job” the day after the Republican National Convention? Did Trump know that Manafort was working for a millionaire ally of Vladimir Putin? [Trump speech]


DID YOU KNOW that Roger Stone is “under investigation for what would be his dirtiest trick–colluding with the Russians to defeat Hillary Clinton and to put his friend in the White House?” [Maggie Haberman, The New York Times, March 21, 2017]

DID YOU KNOW that Carter Page, an American oil consultant and “an early foreign policy adviser to Donald J. Trump who was scrutinized by the F.B.I. on suspicion of private communications with senior Russian officials over the summer, was back in Moscow on Thursday.” [Moscow release to The New York Times, December, 2016]

DID YOU KNOW that Representative Devin Nunes (R, Calif), who is running the House Intelligence Committee on the Russian-Trump connection, was a member of President Trump’s transition team?

DID YOU KNOW that Representative Devin Nunes (R, Calif), who is running the House Intelligence Committee on the Russian influence in the 2016 election, told reporters he didn’t know who Roger Stone and Carter Page are? [Nunes interview]

DID YOU KNOW that Representative Adam Shiff, (D, Calif), a ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee’s investigation, has said publicly that “he has more than circumstantial evidence” that Trump associates colluded with Russia. [Lawrence O’Donnell program, MSNBC News, March 22, 2017]


DID YOU KNOW that Rex Tillerson, the current Secretary of State and General Mike Flynn, who served as Donald Trump’s National Security Advisor during the transition period and for a short period after President Trump took office, had close relationships with Vladimir Putin and the Russian oligarchs? [various news reports]


DID YOU KNOW that “the reclusive mastermind behind President Trump’s nationalist ideology and combative tactics, Stephen Bannon, made his public debut Thursday, delivering a fiery rebuke of the media and declaring that the new administration is in an unending battle for ‘deconstruction of the administrative state.’” [The Washington Post reporting on the Conservative Action Pac conference]

DID YOU KNOW that it is commonly known that Vladimir Putin despised Hillary Clinton and therefore wanted to influence the 2016 election to see that Ms Clinton lost the presidency to businessman Donald Trump? [MSNBC news release]

DID YOU KNOW that President Donald Trump is on record “assert[ing] his desire to draw Russia and the United States closer together as president–building on a long-established track record of Trump’s fondness for the autocratic Russian leader?” [CNN Politics article, “Donald Trump’s Praise for Vladimir Putin” by Jeremy Diamond, July 2016]

DID YOU KNOW that, while he was telling his followers that Hillary Clinton was under F.B.I. investigation,


Donald Trump [himself] was the subject of an F.B.I. investigation? [released during the House Intelligence Committee Investigation]

DID YOU KNOW that “The U.S. intelligence community concluded in a report released publicly on January 6th, 2017 that Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered a massive influence campaign to interfere in the presidential election in favor of Trump?” [MSN article, Max Greenwood in The Hill, March 22, 2017]

Now that you know these facts and assertions, can you connect the dots (the relationships)? Would you say that the Trump administration has some ‘splainin’ to do?

I would.



My parents restricted our television watching when I was young. I learned to tell time before kindergarten so I could turn on my program (Romper Room) at 11:30. I still rarely watch TV and been thinking we can let the cable access go without a problem. I watched only a few things in the past year and most of that was accessible online.

However, I know a lot of people have the television on just about all day. It’s background noise to some. For many, it is the focus of their activity. Perhaps, in time, it will be also for me. My mother-in-law, essentially bedridden in her last few years because of COPD, had no cable but still could watch local programs. She had public television on all day. Or at least when her local sports team was not being televised. The television brings the world to a lot of people, especially if they do not get out in to the world.

Back in 2000 I heard people talking about a new TV program, Survivor. They were excited about what the contestants of this reality show had to do. I actually watched one show; I think they had to eat bugs. It was an interesting concept but, to me, not worth the time. I had a six-year-old and my husband was dying of brain cancer. It was more important to me to spend time with them than spend an hour glued to what really seemed like the idiot box.

We were living in Huntington, West Virginia in 2010 when British Chef Jamie Oliver came to town to get people to change their bad eating habits. Part of the show was filmed at my son’s high school and he came home often with descriptions of what REALLY went on before the cameras started to roll. In addition, I spoke with one of the guys who was on the track team and had participated in the reality show. He described an incident where he informed an associate producer that he had a conflict and was told to tell Oliver. As he started to explain to the chef, Oliver struck his fingers in his ears and started singing “I can’t hear you.” Later, when the episode aired it showed Oliver having a fit because this guy had not had the courtesy to inform him that he would not be there.

So, it was very apparent to me that reality television shows are NOT about reality, but are staged as much as any scripted show. And it also became apparent to me that people watched these shows because they enjoyed seeing people lose. The excitement of the show very much included the idea that someone who is inferior would be kicked out. If the watcher voted for someone who got to stay, they “won.” This set people up, over these years, into a me versus the rest of them attitude.

Needless to say I had no interest in watching the Apprentice. I grew up in the New York City area and knew about Donald Trump’s ways to take advantage of people to get what he wanted. I did not need to give up my time watching him belittle people. However, it was a popular show. And many people voted for Trump based on that television persona. They did not realize it was fake. So, by accepting it as reality, guess what happened?

Now we have a new reality:

The head of the EPA went on national television and said carbon dioxide doesn’t drive climate change. This is a complete reversal of past EPA policy and a total rejection of all credible science and facts. This isn’t a joke–It’s the first step to killing all programs to combat climate change. Ask yourself WHY.

We have escalating fear that a transgender person will attack young girls in public restrooms although no such incident has happened. At the same time, young white men are getting slaps on the wrists for raping and sexually assaulting women, even when they are unconscious. Ask yourself WHY.

A member of the Congressional committee discussing the new healthcare plan does not want men to have to pay for pre-natal health care. Perhaps he is merely unaware how costs go down when the pool includes people who do NOT use a service, or maybe sees no reason for women to have health care costs as low as men. Ask yourself WHY.

The populations of more and more states are voting for legalized medical and recreational use of marijuana but the federal government is adamant that the risk to public health is equivalent to drugs like crack, meth, and heroin. So, the legal businesses have restrictions from federal banks and the government can continue to slap people into prison for sentences that are often longer than [sentences for] crimes against people. Ask yourself WHY.

While 17 intelligence agencies say they have proof that Trump and his cohorts had dealings with members of the Russian oligarchy, no one in Congress is willing to start an investigation but those same senators pounced all over the mismanagement of Hillary Clinton’s e-mails. Ask yourself WHY.

People throughout the country clamor that illegal aliens have stolen jobs from native-born Americans and support the deportation of all people who entered the country illegally. Farmers growing produce, restaurants, and the construction industry welcome people wanting jobs to come forward. Ask yourself WHY.

Trump promises a YUGE wall to protect us from “bad hombres” and also promises that he will get Mexico to pay for it. As the plans unfold, it appears that not only will we the people be paying for it with a surcharge on Mexican products but it is apparent that Trump’s plan to reduce the funding for the Coast Guard will offer a new door of entry to anyone wanting to come to stay. Ask yourself WHY.

Discussion about infrastructure construction includes giving the work to private companies who will get reimbursed by we the people with tolls on rebuilt highways and bridges. Ask yourself WHY.

And finally, because this list could go on and on….The new healthcare plan will be lowering costs not for we the people but for the government. The rest of us will have the option to pay more than we can afford for services unknown at this time, or die. Simple choice. Ask yourself WHY.

And the people are beginning to make some noise. Congressional town hall meetings in their home districts are having massive attendance. Some are calm as people ask questions and the representative or senator responds. Many districts, however, are not being visited or their meetings are cut short because the congressional representative or senator cannot adequately show that s/he is actually listening to his or her constituents.

But the majority of the people remain silent. Can you explain to me why?

One reader said I am asking too much of people to expect them to comment. Okay, here goes: don’t comment to me. Get involved. Turn off the television and go out into your community. Get involved. Only by your actions will you be known. If not you, who? If not now, when?