A favorite quotation from American founding documents is this partial quote: "We, the people." Taken from the Preamble (and thus the first words) of the U.S. Constitution, "We, the people" is meant to illustrate the primacy of the people of the United States over other powers, especially the powers of the government formed by that same Constitution. But this reading misses the mark. I take those opening words to reflect that the people and the government are one and the same. This seems like an important point in the discussion of 2nd Amendment rights. It is also an important point in many other aspects of how the people and the government relate to one another. And understanding that point drives many of the policies we operate under, and advocate for or against, today. If we hold that "the government" is some entity that exists outside of, separate from, and in enmity against, the people, then many of the policies of the Republican party follow quite naturally.
In the wake of the most recent mass shooting - this time, in a Florida school - many commentators are noting, sadly, that tragedies like this have become the "new normal." I disagree - tragedies like this have become "all too common", but I reject the notion that this is "normal", whether new or old.... Continue Reading →
In the wake of a bipartisan agreement to establish new spending levels through fiscal year 2019, the Republican Administration sent out an official White House statement: ...we were forced to increase spending on things we do not like or want in order to finally, after many years of depletion, take care of our Military...... Continue Reading →
He has had a chance to demonstrate his ability to lead, his ability to negotiate, his ability to command, his ability to help. And he has demonstrated weakness, ignorance, and arrogance instead. It is not about giving him a chance. It's about honestly assessing what he has said and done, how he has behaved, over these past 2 years. He has been weighed, he has been measured, and he has been found wanting.
On being a liberal. What a liberal values.
I would like all of my right wing, conservative friends and family members to read the following. It explains my beliefs in a nutshell. I borrowed this from my buddy Barry Pearl, who borrowed this from another friend. I recently found out that the original author is LORI GALLAGHER WITT.This explains my views in an even tempered, logical way.
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Slate made me work through a maze of come-ons and distractions just to find the price. They turned bonus values into "sales tricks", and made it clear they hoped I would be too ignorant, too stupid to look up the real price. You're trying to sell by misleading me, rather than trying to sell by the value of their offering.
I remember Nixon's "enemies list" - a list of people and organizations that Nixon considered to be major political opponents. So I expect the new president - being far more paranoid and more sensitive to any criticism - to have an enemies list as well. And it would, of course, include anyone who is effective... Continue Reading →
Burke's book was a great introduction, for me, to the central tenets of the Deadhead community - that sense of sharing, of helping one another, of finding your place within the world around you, and of keeping that place intact against the familiar pressures of everyday living. More than just a story - though certainly an interesting and entertaining story - F.T. Burke's "The Bohemian Adventure" shows us how we can grow, even in middle age, to re-center ourselves into a sense of purpose and value. That value isn't found in ourselves as solitary individuals, but in the community of like-minded people, sharing among that community.
As if on cue, a defender of the White House rushed to respond.... Yes, Benghazi. Still. Clearly, and unsurprisingly, this passionate defender missed my point (and, by doing so, reinforced my point). Nothing that is going on now is about President Obama or Secretary Clinton. What is going on now, and in the future, is about Trump - no one else is making the decision about what we do next. Yet he could not resist. He cannot speak unless he is attacking someone - he must always attack, always denigrate, always demean, and always cast himself as a victim of that other person's failings.