He’s Only ‘Mostly’ Dead   (2016Dec29)

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Thursday, December 29, 2016                                                   12:01 PM

Here in the future, things are different. I was born in 1956, when the world was a far different place and people didn’t know half of what they now know—so trust me, this is the future. I can’t begin to list the things we have created, the powers we’ve gained, and the secrets we’ve unlocked from the mysterious universe since the year of my birth. In the course of my lifetime, we have reached a destination so far ahead of what 1956 portended that we refer to things with the ‘post-’ prefix.

When we say ‘post-modern’ we refer to our time as being so far past our expectations and imaginings that “The Jetsons”, once a symbol of futurity, has become a quaint icon of the past. Where technology and history once seemed to file along on a set path, we now see our culture virtually explode—and our entire past rendered moot—by the chaotic changes brought about by developments in AI, robotics, astronomy, genetics, and medicine.

Beliefs once valued enough to merit Crusades and Jihads have become side-issues, old toys we are too grown-up and busy to play with any more. The few benighted groups who can’t accept this find themselves desperately throwing bombs into marketplaces in a futile attempt to keep religion relevant. Meanwhile, reasonable people have all new gods and demons to fear—killer asteroids, AI singularities, global toxicity, climate change, habitat loss, ocean acidification, gene-mod blowback, and overpopulation.

Reasonable people have another, more difficult problem to deal with as well—unreasonable people. You see, with technology making us all more productive, more capable of things that once required vast multitudes—each man and woman becomes a power unto themselves. Our old world, that troubled idyll, got along fine with unreasonable people running all over the place—there was plenty of space and there was only so much damage they could do.

But if you put unreasonable people in the cockpit of an airliner, or in charge of an investment bank, or in the Oval Office—the results are terrifying and global. Our civilization has become too powerful to be trusted in the hands of a childish mind—and yet it is the most foolhardy among us who lust for power and riches. The intelligent people are busily making the world more convenient and accessible—and the stupid people are working overtime trying to take advantage of everyone else—it’s a poisonous combination.

As we observe the powerful within the beltway, and in the several state houses, we feel the futility of having rich people working on ‘protecting’ us from rich people—but I’m not sure we recognize the greater irony of having the most unwise among us ‘protecting’ us from common sense and kindness. When I see some of these people on C-SPAN, orating with the skills of a middle-schooler, saying things no high-school graduate could agree with—I am shocked that such buffoons can get themselves elected to public office—and saddened to realize that their constituencies find them acceptable.

What self-respecting person could publicly claim that our problems are caused by the old, the sick, the poor, the immigrant, the refugee—the most powerless and disenfranchised people on this earth? And who could be fool enough to believe that those in power do not bear any responsibility for the lives they control? In a previous century, humanity mourned the fading of religion, saying “God is dead.” Here in our time, we may mourn the fading of truth and admit, “Common Sense is dead.” That will be the legacy of our late election.

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It’s Kinda Important   (2016Oct30)

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Sunday, October 30, 2016                                       4:07 PM

Well, I’m still mad about Comey—the pig-snout! Fire that hack, President Obama—or whoever is in charge of FBI Directors. It looks like Trump isn’t the only unfit person involved in government these days. These unspeakable people harass after HRC, trying to bring her down with technicalities, while they trample all over the spirit of the election. And I’m not even sure what Comey did was legal—if it is, it shouldn’t be. Actual lawyers have rules preventing them from this behavior—but blowhards can do as they please.

You see, to some people, a position of responsibility is an opportunity, not a burden. Their only purpose in seeking such positions is to further themselves, not serve the public. And they assume that everyone is as empty inside as they are. So, of course, to them, HRC is plotting to take over the world—that’s what they’d do, given the opening. They scoff at the idealism inherent in a lifelong public servant like Secretary Clinton—and they invite us to join them in their bitter conviction that the world is as ugly as they perceive it to be.

Listen to the people that rail against her—they all have a delirious rage to them. It is as if HRC has become for them the symbol of helplessness—she represents women’s equality; her career is an attack on fundamentalism; her marriage is both imperfect but unbroken—which is more than many of her detractors can say; and she is just as pugnacious as her tormentors, but a lot smarter about it—which drives them mad with rage. She is the embodiment of the irresistible force of change—of our ongoing history of social progress and human rights.

I would even go so far as to say that Hillary Rodham Clinton is America, in a woman—flawed but dreaming of greater things, successful but concerned for those who have less, strong and ready to fight—but only for justice and human dignity. And, certainly, cursed by many—for various reasons. But come to think of it—remember that the USA, and we its citizens, are none too well loved in many parts of the world—we’ve made mistakes, and we invite envy with our success—and we’ve been bad-mouthed by people that want to see us fail. Well, in this domestic affair, our presidential election, Hillary is the USA—and Trump and his GOP cronies are the Third-World dictators-of-finance that are bad-mouthing her and want to see her fail. Bullies are everywhere, both at home and abroad—and they can be easily identified by their actions. See these two candidates for who and what they really are, please—it’s kinda important. And please Vote.

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