Saturday, October 29, 2016

A Response to Donald Trump's America the Ugly

Your barrel full of specious lies
That ever hurts the brain
Your purple worded travesties
So warped your fruitless claims
America! America!
Must bring disgrace to thee
We're filled with good and
That you refuse to see

We're beautiful with wondrous feat
Whose passion makes us blessed
A nation cares for those who flee
Across the wilderness
America! America!
God knows we have our flaws,
But firm our soul, show our control
And liberty for all

Your ugliness for heroes proved
Your sad, pathetic life
And only self you gave
your love
No virtue in your eyes
America! America!
In him no gold you'll find
All his success brings emptiness
His every grain a lie

O beautiful, for perfect dreams
That see beyond the fears
Thine silver shining mountains gleam
Our cities ring with cheer
America! America!
Must bring disgrace to thee
We're filled with good and
That you refuse to see

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Christie and His Underlings

It was a corrosive atmosphere, a corroded home to ugliness, orchestrated by a master bully.

It was clear, even from the first taunting denials of Governor Christie, the first press conference in which he dismissed the connecting the dots theory as balderdash, that his bravado and mockery could not hide one undeniable truth. Those under his command were emboldened to act by fiat of a boss whose hubris knew no bounds, whose petulance was omnipresent and who believed payback was both his right and the duty of his underlings.

Governor Christie may have been unindicted, he may not have moved the cones as he so derisively stated, but he moved all the pieces on the chess board as an example for the ages of everything abusive about power placed in the wrong hands.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Fear of the Deafening Sound of Silence

("What Drives Donald Trump? Fear of Losing Status, Tapes Show")

It was the cheers of the crowd that mattered, that gave him that rush of adrenaline. It was the political incorrectness, the one liners that berated others but thrilled those chanting his name, wearing the hat with his signature line. He was a cliff jumper, always searching for a higher elevation, an ever more perilous risk to be taken.
And when those around him counseled that he stick to the script, play the game, he could not for it would have meant that the enthusiasm for him could have waned. Then he would have been like all the rest, mundane, maybe even boring. And for him that would be the worst sin of all.
And if he dies, he will go out with guns blazing, not fading slowly in the night, but exploding like a shooting star leaving a flame in the sky as it descends to earth.
Of all the things that could cause him to suffer, the worst is to say we didn't notice that he left.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

An Unforgivable Sin

I used to bear malice towards none but that no longer holds true. I cannot and will not forgive and forget the pain the Republican candidate for President has caused me. What galls me beyond all else is that I am prohibited from playing golf on any course with the name you know who in it.

I mean I have withstood a lot. His face twisting, hand gesturing, finger pointing, fact contorting dystopic meanderings have often left me angered, bewildered, perplexed and just about every other angst ridden emotion one can contemplate. This bozo leading the free world. Please (not that kind of please but the ironic, rhetorical one).

But as that danger ebbs and we can begin to contemplate a day when we will not be saddled with the world according to him, as the sun begins to peek out between the clouds, as a warmth begins to reenter my system even as the cold of winter begins to descend, even at this moment when it seems we can begin to turn our thoughts to puppy dogs and puffy clouds that look just like the profile of Abraham Lincoln, even then his icy tentacles will grab a hold of me where it hurts the most (not there, this is an ironic, not literal turn of phrase).

For nearly all my life I have chased a golf ball down any fairway that my eye fancied and my wallet permitted. Of course (golf speaking) those that built a wall to keep away the undesirables (meaning those of insufficient weight, financially speaking) were well beyond my sight and contemplation, but all others might one day find me hacking and cursing within its boundaries (or possibly just outside its bounds).

But that uncontested truth is no more. No longer can my gaze fix upon that long five, it's green guarded by white deserts or deep rivers, nor my mind contemplate the swirling winds that bedevil me. My feet will not touch this terra firma nor my dollars depart my hands, if this patch of land contains even the faintest smell of you know who.

I have both friend and family who have sworn allegiance, at least of the dimpled Titleist kind, to layouts bearing the name of you know who. I have been invited as guest to some of these establishments and have, in days past, occasionally found myself within their confines. There is even, within striking distance of my home, one where the hoi polloi and their dinero (sorry, English only spoken when discussing you know who and his you know what) are welcome (muchas gracias).

But I have to draw a line in the sand that cannot be crossed (sorry for that Assad reference). My family would lose all respect for me if I meandered over to the dark side (metaphorically speaking) and allowed the one whose name I cannot mention, whom I so vehemently oppose, to benefit from my presence at one of the many golfing homes bearing his name. I would lose all respect for myself, for what is the worth of a man if his most deeply held beliefs can be cast asunder for a well shaped dog-leg, a pretty face of a bunker, or a perfectly placed hole (for those of you whose minds are now on the Bush bus, please get off at once)?

And so I will cast my vote, pledge my allegiance, get down on my knees and pray to many golfing gods but not this one. This is a bridge too far, a wall too high, a hazard too severe, to traverse.
A universe where I am constrained in my hopes, my aspirations. An America (and beyond) where there are places I cannot enter and people I cannot see. For that restraint upon my dreams, more than the other countless sins committed by you know who, for that there is no room for forgiveness.
And if one day I should falter, if the passage of time and the distance of distaste should dull my memory, if I should find myself thinking that it could not have been as horrid as the picture I painted, on that day may the golfing gods turn my driver into a snake and my golf ball into dust.
You know who, a stain upon this nation, who could never make this country great again in a thousand lifetimes, but who could make (or at least alter) a few pretty good courses. Attempted killer of millions of important dreams. And one of slightly less cosmic significance.

Friday, October 21, 2016

The "Undecideds"

The "undecideds". That is theoretically the sum and substance of what this, or any other presidential election, is about. Convincing those, who by reason of lack of interest or lack of understanding, have been unable to determine which candidate more closely meets the vision of the America they believe in.
Donald Trump has done a wonderful job of convincing the "decideds" that he is their person. He has been the living embodiment of his pronouncement that he does not have time to be politically correct. From the opening dog whistle on Mexicans to the final bell on nasty women, he has called out virtually anyone and everyone in the most politically inappropriate manner conceivable.
And for his committed base, for the many millions in our midst who see the America that Mr. Trump sees (or at least pretends to see for his adoring audience), he has been a breath of fresh air (well maybe not so fresh). A man who is willing to bring voice to our inner demons, to express the hatreds and contempts, the annoyances and the grievances that no other politician dare enunciate.
For his "decideds", Donald Trump is hero, martyr. He is unwilling to compromise his beliefs (or at least theirs) in the face of a cacophony of dissent, unwilling to accept even the possibility that what he says is wrong on so many levels. He does not back down. And if he goes down, he goes down swinging.
He is all about the adoration. How many times he has told us who loves him, even if they do not. Women, blacks, Hispanics. The list is exhaustive and pure fantasy. But Mr.Trump wants, no he needs, the praise to feed his ego, and so he will give his base, his "decideds" all the red meat they need to make this happen.
And along the way, he will have alienated almost every "undecided" in this country. Who, but maybe the old, rich white guy, has not been the subject of his vitriol. Immigrants have been his prime target, but in pushing every button for his most loyal subject, there has been almost no category not derided: from war hero to the disabled, from fat to ugly, from those who did not kiss his ring in his own party to those who stood on the stage and challenged him, from past president to the first black president not born in this country, a secret Muslim intent on destroying this nation that he hates, from the "Wall" to "Bush-gate". Over the past 16 months he has thrown most of this nation under the bus.

And, in this non-stop attack, fed by the cheering crowds, by the "lock her up" chants, by the multitude wearing the hat with his signature line, in all this he has accomplished what was once thought inconceivable. Donald Trump has handed Hillary Clinton almost all the "undecideds" from sea to not so shining sea.
Barring a catastrophe in the next 17 days, Hillary Clinton will be the next President of the United States. If she wins by a large mandate, if those who were not firmly in her court come to her en masse, if the "undecideds" speak in unison, Hillary Clinton will have one person to thank above all others.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

He Once Said

He once said he would not pledge not to run as an independent if he believed the Republican hierarchy was not fair to him.
He once said he would not attend a  Republican debate because the media was not fair to him.
He once said he would not allow the result to stand if the Republican convention was not fair to him.
He now says he would not accept a defeat on November 8 if the election process is not fair to him.
What has not been fair is Donald Trump's candidacy, his ugliness, his thin skin, his anger, his lack of knowledge, his lack of understanding,  his pettiness, his rambling, nonsensical, dangerous comments, his total and complete lack of qualification for the office he seeks to hold. What has not been fair is his mistreatment of this nation.
So on November 8th, when the votes have all been cast, the only thing that would be unfair is if Donald Trump did not, with whatever shred of decency resides within him, leave the stage with even a touch of grace and dignity.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

The Vast Conspiracy Against Donald Trump

The election is in fact rigged.
What other conclusion can be reached when no major newspaper in this country, not one, has endorsed Donald Trump. A vast left AND right wing media conspiracy.
What other conclusion can be reached when so many courts have overturned legislation intended to control the massive non-existent voter fraud Mr. Trump insists is real. A vast judicial conspiracy.
What other conclusion can be reached  when Mr. Trump feared that his own party's nomination would be "stolen" from him.  A vast Republican conspiracy.
Mr. Trump sees conspiracies everywhere he looks.  What other conclusion can be reached but that Mr. Trump is omniscient. Or maybe that he is totally delusional, paranoid and unable to accept responsibility for his own impending political demise.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Mr. Trump's Assault Upon This Nation

("I edited the People writer who says Trump groped her. Here's why she didn't speak out.")

Donald Trump is a perpetual tsunami, wreaking havoc wherever he lands and leaving minds and bodies damaged.

His career, his life, has been about bending people to his will, to his desired goal. Whether it be a woman who strikes his fancy, a business deal he finds attractive, or a political race that beckons, his has always been about the taking, the conquest. Any means to his end.

The assault upon Natasha Stoynoff was, we can be fairly certain, but one of many similar moments that have dotted the ugly landscape of  Mr. Trump's seven decades. And her response, like the others, was to find multiple reasons not to face the onslaught that would surely follow the accusation.

The media has been complicit, turning its head away, finding the safer and easier route,  ignoring what it could and dismissing his disgusting and destructive behavior as peccadillo rather than perversion.

But Mr. Trump has taught us all, media outlet or individual citizen, a valuable lesson. We cannot cower, we cannot excuse, we cannot by averting our eyes, allow those like Mr. Trump to proceed unchecked and unchallenged. And if we owe Mr. Trump any thanks, it is only in his teaching us that the more we allow those like him to feel insulated from our review and our rebuke, the more we all suffer the consequences.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Bob Dylan - Nobel Prize Winner


Confession: I’m not smart enough to understand many of the parables and metaphors and references to other works woven throughout Bob Dylan’s lyrics. I am, nonetheless, awed by their beauty, their depth and their range.
And I am far from alone in my admiration: He also inspires countless creators to cover, expand upon, interpret and derive from his work, a trait that puts him not only squarely in the folk tradition, but also in the world of storytelling and oral history.
He is indisputably a uniquely gifted (song)writer, well deserving of the Nobel Prize in Literature.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Thoughts on Yom Kippur


On Yom Kippur, to my fellow Jewish Americans: If you're fasting, may it be peaceful and easy. If you're atoning, may you do so with only the minimum required amount of Jewish guilt. And if you feel upset, angry, or frightened by the recent disturbing rise in anti-Semitic rhetoric, stirred up by one very orange tyrant, take this opportunity to reflect upon the fact that we are incredibly fortunate to live in a time and a place where, except in the darkest, most miserable corners of society, anti-Semitism has no impact on our daily lives. Jews enjoy all of the privileges and opportunities that come along with our American citizenship.

Our grandparents were not so lucky. Jews in some other parts of the world are not so lucky.

And, most importantly, right here in America, today in 2016, our Latino and black neighbors (Jewish and Gentile alike), as well as our Muslim brothers and sisters, are not so lucky. They face prejudice, discrimination, and persecution every day, from personal insults to systematic oppression.

I'm not a religious person, but I'd still like to use this day to apologize for falling short of my own ideals, and to vow to be a better advocate for justice and equality in the real world (not just in internet posts). In the coming weeks, I'll start at the voting booth -- but I hope to have the strength and courage to carry my values far beyond there.

Why I Care

I was described as having an "Ahabian" obsession with Donald Trump. I think that is not an incorrect statement. The question is why.

The answer is that I care about what our children hear and see from their leader, I care about our environment, I care about our crumbling infrastructure, I care about our love affair with guns and the NRA,  I care about whose finger is on the nuclear button,  I care about protecting our right to vote, I care about who sits on our Supreme Court, I care about who has a right to live peacefully in this country,  I care about who we open our arms and our hearts to, I care about who pays taxes, I care about who respects women, children, blacks, Latinos, war heroes, immigrants, the disabled, I care about the truth,  I care about who spends a life devoted to self and selfish pursuits and who spends a life devoted to service of others, I care about who puts in the time and effort to learn and understands the nature of the problems we face, I care about who can address this nation's issues thoughtfully and who can only fuel the fire with thoughtless and reckless actions, I care about the future of the world and what it will look like in four or eight years.

I care because he doesn't.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Donald Trump - Alpha Male Unhinged

He is the hater in chief, the rich white guy sitting on his throne, pontificating and belittling every person, male or female who is not him.
His lust for power has no boundaries, all must kneel before this alpha male gone bad. His orange hair is but the lion's mane, as he surveys the puny universe below.
His admiration is reserved only for others in his realm, like the bare chested Russian leader who crushes dissent and takes what he wants.
Greatness, in his cruel world does not sanction understanding or compassion. It has disdain for the poor, the disabled, the weak, the ones who get in the way. It is kill or be killed, as he roams the stage in a manic display of a man unhinged.
The man on the bus spoke the truths he knows and believes. While Mr. Brooks might find a place in his heart for pity and sadness for Donald Trump, this ridiculous small man taking up far too much time and space in our lives is deserving of nothing but our disgust and disdain.

Monday, October 10, 2016

Donald Trump - Back from the Dead


He began as if he were sedated, speaking almost without modulation. As the evening proceeded, he pounced, time and again, unleashing the fury of a caged animal sensing it was kill or be killed. 

He hovered over his prey as she spoke. He moved impatiently here and there while he waited to be heard, interrupting time and again to assure that there was no cadence or rhythm to the message of his foe. 

He attacked the moderators, he threatened to jail his adversary as soon as he was crowned emperor. And his opponent, even as we all smelled blood, never went for the jugular.

Donald Trump survived last night, despite the many who gave him up for dead. He blamed everyone but himself for the litany of his transgressions, but mainly Bill and Hillary Clinton. They, not he, were the despicable ones, they were the deplorables. In a world turned on its head, Ms. Clinton's lifetime of pursuing causes to benefit others was the problem, not Mr. Trump's incredibly self centered  and destructive seven decade journey. 

It sickens me to think that Donald Trump remains politically alive, prepared to spend another day in the spotlight, regaling us with his lies and his particularly odious brand of hatred. But he does.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Donald Trump - Hiding in Plain Sight

After Megyn Kelly had blood coming from her "wherever", after Carly Fiorina had a face that disqualified her from becoming President, after Rosie O'Donnell was savaged, after the size of women's breasts became the benchmark of their worth, after wanting to punish women who had abortions, after fantasizing about dating his daughter, after Alicia Machado was fat-shamed, after we heard about the groping.  After all of this, did it really take a dirty remark to Billy Bush (irony in the name and the family) to convince America what a lout this man was?

He has spent well more than a year demonstrating, day in and day out, that he is not only the least qualified but the most reprehensible candidate to ever get this close to the highest office in the land. He has intentionally and repeatedly castigated, made more undeniably hateful comments in the course of this race than we thought possible. Did the nation not know the fibre of this man until this tape appeared?

The list of those whom Mr. Trump has demeaned and denigrated is, by multitudes, greater than the few he may have praised. He has not elevated this country, but brought it into the gutter. He has treated not merely women but this nation with a total lack of respect. He has, from the moment he appeared on this stage, from the very first speech, told us only of those unworthy to be in our presence, in his presence.
It is the great shame of this nation and those who have supported Donald Trump through the months and months of his egregious and outrageous warfare, after a candidacy and a career of punching down instead of lifting up, that only now do they allege they can see what has been hiding in plain sight all along.

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Trump is the GOP and the GOP is Trump

My dad asked me to cross-post this here on his blog. The original post is here.

If (and hopefully when) Donald Trump’s presidential campaign finally suffers its well-deserved, long-overdue collapse (if not before Election Day, then on it), Republican politicians, pundits, and media outlets will try to rewrite history, claiming that they never truly supported him, or that they share very few of his values and policy positions, or that they actively criticized and challenged him from day one, or that they did everything they could to prevent him from becoming their nominee, or that they were totally blindsided by his words and actions, or that he is an outlier, a party of one, completely unrepresentative of modern conservatism and the Republican party.
This is bullshit. And we shouldn’t let them get away with it.
Going back more than half a century, the Republican party has made white racial resentment a key part of its sales pitch (google “Southern Strategy” if you’re unfamiliar). Under President Obama, this was often their only clear, consistent ideological pillar, as they offered little in the way of coherent policy beyond “othering” Obama and opposing and obstructing anything that he did, even if it was previously a Republican idea (Romneycare comes to mind) or previously bipartisan and relatively uncontroversial (Voting Rights Act reauthorizations, raising the debt ceiling, regulating dangerous pollutants and deadly weapons, engaging in global diplomacy, and sensible immigration reform all jump out).
(To be fair, tax cuts for the rich have also been a consistent and near-unanimous Republican policy position for quite some time, but GOP politicians are often embarrassed to admit this to their voters, and so they couch thoroughly-debunked and deeply-unpopular trickle-down economics in misleading or false language, suggesting tax cuts for all, or painting progressive taxation as regressive, or basically suggesting that all tax revenue is squandered by incompetent government so we should deprive the country of as much revenue as we can. So it’s hard to even give them credit for this if they won’t admit publicly that it is what they support.)
In the primaries, none of the other candidates forcefully and consistently spoke out against Trump when they had the chance (and they had plenty of chances). Jeb Bush is often given undeserved credit for challenging Trump, but let’s recall that he actually tried to out-Islamophobe him (via an unworkable and Unconstitutional “Christian test” for refugees) before later settling on condemning him. John Kasich is often lauded for staying “above the fray,” but that essentially amounted to Kasich ignoring Trump’s worst statements, rather than challenging them. And Ted Cruz slobbered Trump with praise, perhaps more out of strategy than sincerity, before harshly criticizing Trump and then reversing course again and endorsing him. Reince Priebus and Paul Ryan had ample opportunity, good cause, and more than enough political influence to rebuke and repudiate Trump (and to encourage others to do the same), but instead hopped aboard the Trump train whenever it was politically expedient. Even well-regarded elder statesmen like John McCain, whose honor was viciously attacked by Trump, relied more on polling data than principle to guide their actions. Hardly profiles in courage.
Into this vacuum of policy and principle stepped The Donald. In a party void of ideas (or at least any worthwhile, empirically-sound, and/or popular ones that they are willing to clearly state, commit to and to defend), elections are nothing more than popularity contests, a cult of celebrity, with a particular emphasis on and unsettling fetish for authoritarian strongmen. When virtually all policy is opposition (repeal Obamacare; strip rights from gay people, and women, and minorities, and immigrants; block all regulations; fight a war against the entire Muslim world; vilify scientists and deny climate change; end or block government programs that disproportionately benefit “those people”), the loudest, most confident fear-monger in the room tends to win the argument (fact and reason be damned!), scare up the vote, and win elections.
In fact, the more I think about this, the more obvious it becomes that Donald Trump was the natural choice for Republican nominee, the apogee of modern-day Republicanism. Sure, the party claims to support “family values” and wears Christian religiosity on its sleeve, and we’ve always known that Trump is a thrice-married philanderer (even before yesterday’s “grab them by the pussy” revelations). But the GOP’s moral crusaders are curiously very frequently hypocrites of the highest order, and their “family values” often start and end in the womb, discriminate against “non-traditional” families, and strangely exclude, overlook, underfund, or actively harm almost all major family-related issues like child care, nutrition, housing, education, health care, and equal pay for working women.
What I’m trying to say is that Trump IS the Republican party and the Republican party — including most of its current governors, senators, and congresspeople — is Trump. They fundamentally stand for the same things (for example: discrimination, encoded in the law; heaping benefits upon the fortunate, neglect/scorn upon the less fortunate, or at best faux concern not backed up by actual funding/support) and share many of the same flaws (for example: dishonesty/inconsistency on policy, especially regarding taxation; denial of science, especially regarding climate; fixation on bogeymen, like an imaginary invasion of foreign terrorists who kill at most dozens of Americans each year, rather than real problems, like the guns which kill 30,000+ Americans each year).
I’m not gloating. I think this is a terrible state of affairs. A democracy without at least 2 reasonable, rational, sane political parties (or, at the very least, 2 reasonable, rational, sane opposing points of view) is not really a democracy at all. It leaves many voters feeling justifiably angry, abandoned, and disillusioned. It diminishes opportunities for meaningful discussion, honest debate, scholarly inquiry, and good-willed compromise. And it makes it nearly impossible to govern. As liberal as I am, I would really like to see a Republican party that offers actual, sound, coherent, reasonable, honest policy alternatives to the Democrats, if only to educate voters and provide a basis for real comparison.
But until that day, they all need to be voted out of office. Every last one of the spineless, self-serving, cruel Republicans who, at best, enabled and who, at worst, promoted, echoed and celebrated Trump’s racism, misogyny, xenophobia, Islamophobia, authoritarianism, demagoguery, jingoism, sick flirtations with Neo-Nazis and other sundry hatemongers and anti-Semites, and abhorrent megalomania, crudeness, and antisocial behavior — every last one of them should see their political careers and reputations justifiably damaged (future history book writers, take note). This goes double for the greedy opportunists who make money by normalizing and defending this indefensible filth (which, I’m convinced, most of them know is indefensible filth) — including right-wing pundits and propagandists convincingly or unconvincingly masquerading as legitimate news sources (::cough:: Fox News ::cough::) — pumping (mostly) white Americans full of irrational fear and misinformation.
If there are no consequences for the Republican party that made Trump possible, we’ll see nothing more than another hollow, ignored “autopsy” report after the general election, and then more of the same shit for years to come. No lessons learned. No changes made. A party that grows more radical, more hateful, more mendacious. And a government that grows even more dysfunctional as a direct result. And, bad as that all is, I shudder to think what happens if there’s some “October surprise,” the tides turn again and Trump actually wins this thing…
- Richie Jay

Friday, October 7, 2016

The Chair

I sit and stare at her. She has her eyes closed, as they are almost always are these days. She is fully awake but no longer has any vision, so making the effort to open her eyes must seem an unnecessary exercise. The reality is she doesn't even comprehend that she is blind.

I speak in loud voice (which, sadly, is my natural tone). I repeat my questions or my tales several times, hoping a slightly different inflection or a shuffling of words will make the synapses in her brain fire.

Sometimes I give up, spending long periods looking through my emails or just sitting in silence. I try to conjure up some new story to fill the dead air, or maybe I ask her to tell me about her favorite vacation, as if she were fully capable of responding in chapter and verse.

And if she should answer, if she should laugh, whether what I said was humorous or not, if she should say something, anything that would lead me to believe that there is still some residue, I call my sister. "You won't believe this, but Mom just......"

The chair I sit in has been glued back together by my wife. Years of heat and the rays of the afternoon sun made the chair brittle, the top third separating from the rest.  The old area rug, worn and frayed, which filled up much of this room, was removed and in its stead there is a much smaller carpet, a gift to my mom's caretaker. It does not cover nearly all of the still remaining old matting which announces its continued, if unsightly, presence.

I talk to my mom for but a few minutes, shuffling through her mail, ripping up the notices from the country club she has not been to in almost a decade, the solicitations from car companies even though she has had not driven a vehicle since 2008 and not even traveled in one since 2011.

My sister and I share this chair, alternating days when we appear so that we can fill up my mom's days each in our own way. We meet together at my mom's only in the rarest of times and only then as passing ships. But virtually every day we report to the other what has transpired from our seat in that chair.

This chair has been witness to the deterioration of my mom, and it is but mirror of her decline. It was once young and strong, surrounded by other pieces of equal beauty and vigor. But now it is aged and broken, fragile and barely held together.

I always leave this room by telling my mom that I love her, kissing her on the forehead and informing her that I will return soon, maybe tomorrow if my schedule allows. Just as my coming almost always elicits some type of response, so does my parting. On the best of days she will tell me I should return right away.

Tomorrow I will sit in that chair, repeat the same stories, rifle through the mail, stare at my phone, perform my version of Bill Murray's Groundhog Day.  And hope that my mom, with all her limitations, will still enjoy my visit. Like the chair, she perseveres.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

The Un-President

Undisciplined, unfocused, unprepared, unintelligible, unforgiving, undiscerning, uncontrollable, unrepentant, unwelcoming, underwhelming.


Are these the qualities we want in our President? Unthinkable. Unimaginable.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Making the Impossible Possible - How The Nightmare of Donald Trump Happened

It is possible because the party controlling the White House for two terms is always in disfavor, always on the defensive about some policy that has not worked out, about an economy that is never good enough, about some foreign nation that gnaws at our aura of greatness and invincibility.
It is possible because it is easier to call upon our base instincts rather than our higher ones, to find compassion and charity less compelling than hatred and selfishness, to see the benefits in division not inclusion.
It is possible because it is harder to dig beneath the surface and study rather than accept the superficial, because we want easy answers to impossibly difficult questions, because we would rather be entertained than informed.
It is possible because Donald Trump knows how to play on our anxieties, our fears, our unhappiness,, our shortcomings.
It is possible because we let it be possible.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Tweetin' the Night Away

Let me take you to a place I know
High up in the clouds for sure
Where a man turns dark to day
Tweetin' the night away
Here he lets the insults fly
Mocking with his cruelest cry
Man, he tells the fattest lies
He's tweetin' the night away
He's tweetin', tweetin'
Every word is filled with hate
He's tweetin', tweetin',
Tweetin' the night away
There he sits in underwear
Belly hanging, messy hair
Man, he has a lot to share
Tweetin' the night away
He'll criticize Ms. Universe
She's a pig and even worse
Oh man, he's just a living curse
Tweetin' the night away

Gets a call at 3 AM
Something about the world to end
"Don't bother me, I'm tweetin' friends"
Tweetin' the night away

Melania is fast asleep
Donald's told don't make a peep
But the man's a selfish creep
Tweetin' the night away

He's tweetin', tweetin'
Every word is filled with hate
He's tweetin', tweetin',
Tweetin' the night away

"Hey Vlad how does it go
We're putting on quite a show
Love you like you were my bro'"
Tweetin' the night away

"Hillary's a crooked dame
Cheatin', lyin' all for fame
Does she not have any shame"
Tweetin' the night away

Soon he could be President
And then he'll change his residence
From 1600 rants are sent
Tweetin' the night away

See him with his tiny hands
Pecking threats to foreign lands
Tweetin' words without a plan
Tweetin' the night away

Donald please go back to bed
Too much already you have said
Coming from your empty head
Tweetin' the night away

Go to sleep, give it a rest
You know you have to look your best
When you fail tomorrow's test
Tweetin' the night away

He's tweetin', tweetin'
Every word is filled with hate
He's tweetin', tweetin',
Tweetin' the night away