The war will never leave me.  I suppose I should’ve realized this sooner, but the burden of war has a cumulative effect.  It slowly reasserts itself as the years go by, when it becomes safer to think about it. Or so you think.

It never becomes safer to think about, though.  The reality of war, the reality of having gone to it, having survived it, having known people who did not survive it (or did not survive the peace, because of the damage inflicted during the war) – all those things never fade.  Never.  They will always be there.  They will always be with me and all the other men who went to that war, and everyone who has been to every war since.  Men and women who slogged around in the countryside, and became brutalized and traumatized and deeply wounded in ways no one else but us can see.

I’d like to think I could pick out a combat veteran in a crowd, especially an Iraq or Afghanistan vet, because with them, the raw pain is still very close to the surface.  Maybe not even beneath the surface.  On the other hand, I might mistake a heroin junkie for a vet, because the dark hollowness around the eyes, the lingering, aching emptiness within, all look and feel much the same from the outside.

I got my fix in Viet Nam, every time some son of a bitch took a shot at us, or someone hit a booby trap, or we walked into an ambush.  Not many months in, and I was hooked.  The ecstasy of a firefight cannot be understood by someone who has not experienced the fire and lead orgasm of screaming pain and anger that just pours out of you through the barrel of your weapon, blasting fear, blasting tiredness and loneliness, giving you a sense of joy and power and fucking white hot revenge for every ill ever done you.

I don’t know.  Maybe my analogy is all off.  I’ve never done heroin, I’ve just done war.  And the war did me.  Yes it did.  It did me real well.   But it didn’t throw me aside afterwards, the way heroin does with some people.  No, it had burrowed so deeply within me, that for many long years I didn’t even realize it was still there.  But it is.  It’s been there since that day in November 1969 when an AK-47 round flew my way for the first of many times.  The war is still there, and it will never end, and it will never let me go.  No matter how many words I write, no matter how many ill-fated loves I fall into in hopes of finding joy and ecstasy again, no matter how many days accumulate between then and now, I will never be free of it.


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Try and Catch the Wind


Trying to connect with her was like trying to lasso the wind, and like the wind, she was there, but not there.  Sometimes what we felt with and for each other was gale force.  Other times, there was barely a breeze to relieve an oppressively hot day.

But she wasn’t a weather system, or a high pressure zone, or a tropical depression – she was a woman, and her abrupt and inexplicable withdrawal left a hole in the middle of my life, and in my heart.  The hole is larger than I thought, especially relative to the duration of our relationship.  Only half a year.  And it was only the first 4/6ths of it that were really, really good.  Then the long, slow downward slide began.

Was it the anti-depressants she was taking?  Or was it the depression itself?  Or, was it fear on her part?  A fear of reality, perhaps, and connection, and love, with everything that four-letter word means, both actually and potentially.

When she said to me, early on, that she’s a serial monogamist, I thought the emphasis was on the second word of that phrase.  Instead, the emphasis was on the first word.  Maybe she had an exit plan all along, and regardless of how intensely she felt love for me, regardless of how open and real and genuine it all was, we ran up against her self-imposed deadline, and that was it – party over.

The party’s been over for two and a half months now, and I can see how it’s going to be for me: every other woman, every other twinge of love, every other night spent entwined beneath the sheets, will be compared to her, to the twinges of love I felt for her, and to those entwined hours she and I shared.  It will fade eventually, that  seemingly unrequitable longing, and I suppose that will be a good thing for me, to say nothing of whomever else I am trying to forge a relationship with.  It will fade, and that will be good, but there is a hole deep within me that may never completely close up, nor heal.  I won’t treasure that unhealed piece of me, I won’t cling to it like a pathetic emotional raft, but I will remember.  I will always remember.


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National We Got the Hell Out Day


Yesterday, 29 March, was National Viet Nam Veterans’ Day.  I had no idea such a thing existed.  You may wonder, as I did, why it’s on 29 March.

29 March 1973 is the day that the last American combat troops were pulled out of Viet Nam.  The last prisoners of war held in North Viet Nam arrived on American soil on that same day.  It’s also the date President Nixon chose for the first Vietnam Veterans Day in 1974 (more about Nixon presently).

I suppose that, for those of us who are veterans of the Viet Nam War, 29 March is our equivalent of World War Two’s VE Day or VJ Day, except VVN Day doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue quite as easily as the other two acronyms.

More important than the sound of it is the meaning of it.  The first V is supposed to stand for Victory, but there was no victory in Viet Nam for the United States.  There wasn’t even a stalemate, as in Korea.  (In case you’re wondering, 27 July is National Korean War Veterans Armistice Day.)

What were we doing in Viet Nam anyway, from 8 March 1965 to 29 March 1973 (the period of our direct, large-unit combat involvement)?  I don’t mean what were we doing.  From my year as an infantryman in Viet Nam I can attest rather well to that.  No, I mean, what were we doing there?  What larger purpose did we serve?  What did eight years and over 58,000 American deaths (and many more Vietnamese, Lao and Khmer deaths) purchase for America, or for the noble cause of democracy?

Well, the war propped up a notoriously corrupt South Vietnamese government.  Then, sixteen months before the Marines landed at Da Nang in 1965, we – the American government, in the form of the CIA – colluded with military officers in South Vietnam to overthrow and murder the president of that country, Ngô Đình Diệm, and his younger brother, Ngô Đình Nhu.

What else?  We dropped more explosives on South-East Asia than was done to Europe during all of World War Two.  We indiscriminately sprayed an awful herbicide on thousands of acres of Viet Nam, Laos, and Cambodia, denuding forests, polluting streams and rivers, and engendering all manner of illnesses in locals and Americans alike.

The war, the protests against the war, and the disarray of the Democratic Party, ensured the election of Richard M. Nixon in 1968.  I do not count this as a positive thing, and not just because of Nixon’s paranoid delusions and illegal activities.  America has survived all that.  Cambodia, on the other hand, is still suffering and trying to recover from Nixon’s decision to send B-52’s and American ground troops into that country in 1970, a decision that threw Cambodia into chaos and laid the groundwork for the Khmer Rouge to take over in 1975.  The Khmer Rouge’s legacy, and by extension Richard Nixon’s legacy, and by further extension America’s legacy, is one of mass dislocations (the entire population of Phnom Penh was forced into the countryside), millions murdered, a beautiful and peaceful people brutalized and ground down by their fellow countrymen.  Some legacy, that.

We did not make the world safe for democracy.  No dominos fell.  No, we went, we destroyed, and we left.  Based upon that, I think a better name for this day (which is, after all, not a holiday like Armistice Day or Memorial Day) is We Got the Hell Out Day.

Doesn’t that seem more accurate?  I think so.  We saw no parades yesterday, no fly-overs, no paeans to the men and women who served and who died.  Oh, the Secretaries of Defense and Veteran Affairs went to the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial in Washington, D.C., and laid a wreath in honor of Vietnam veterans and Vietnam Veterans Memorial Day.  There was a nice ribbon across the wreath that read “A Grateful Nation Remembers.”  (Does the nation remember?  Is the nation grateful?  If so, for what exactly is it grateful?)  After the wreath was placed in front of the wall, the Secretaries put Vietnam Veteran Lapel Pins (officially released by the government in July 2015) on the lapels of a few gathered veterans.  Haven’t heard about the lapel pins either?  Neither had I.

It’s probably just as well there were no parades or fly-overs.  If one more person thanks me for my service in Viet Nam, I will either throw up or scream.  Maybe both.   “Thank you for your service” is a bumper sticker platitude uttered by people who mean well – I honestly believe they do – but who, luckily for them, have no real idea what combat veterans endured in Viet Nam, or Iraq, or Afghanistan, and even less of an idea as to why we were there and why it didn’t work.

I’d like to suggest a substitute phrase for those who feel compelled to say something upon meeting someone who has been in a war.  Here it is:  “I’m so sorry you endured such traumatic experiences.”  If you’re feeling motivated to say more, you could add, “I cannot possibly understand what that was like for you, but if you ever want to talk about it, I will listen.”

It won’t fit on a bumper sticker (like the vacuous “Support the Troops”), but it’s much more real and honest.  Think about that on the next National We Got the Hell Out Day.


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Rioting Around the Tree of Liberty

Scottie Nell Hughes thinks that riots “aren’t necessarily a bad thing.”

Besides being a rabid Tea Partier, and a darling of right-wingnut television and talk radio, her credentials for making this pronouncement also include, according to her, being the granddaughter of one of the men who organized the 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago.  You know – the one where the whole world was watching.  Also according to her, if her granddad were still with us, he’d be proud of the fact that she’s supporting Donald Trump.

Maybe he would, and maybe he wouldn’t.  We’ll have to take Scottie Nell Hughes’ word for it, since granddad isn’t around to verify or dispute her contention.  If true, then when it comes to apples not falling far from their trees, I guess she’s the exception that proves the rule.

The interview took place on CNN yesterday (Wednesday, 16 March 2016), while Ms. Hughes was being interviewed by Wolf Blitzer.  When Mr. Blitzer expressed surprise at her comment, she elaborated (all quotes below are from articles on CNN.com and TheBlaze.com; the italics are mine):

“ ‘It’s not riots as in a negative thing,’ Hughes said.  ‘What we’ve seen — it’s the fact that you have a large amount of people that will be very unhappy.  I don’t sit there and think they’d resort to — in fact, I know they would not resort to violence.  I know they would not do it.  However, they would make sure their voices are heard.  That they can’t be ignored.’”

Mr. Blitzer asked her if she really wants riots to emerge from the Republican convention in Cleveland.

“‘I don’t consider riots to be a violent thing,’ Hughes said. ‘I consider it to be something where you have the majority of the people will be engaged and will be paying attention to what is going on.’ ”

I for one am deeply reassured that she is certain no violence would take place during these non-negative riots.  And it’s certainly true that, in a riot, the people are engaged – in throwing rocks, looting, setting fires, et cetera.  Whether they’re paying attention to what’s going on is another matter.

Be honest with me (and yourself):  Have you ever seen a positive riot?  What would that look like?  Girl Scouts fending off out-of-control cookie buyers by swatting them with their little green sashes?  Hare Krishnas driving the Tea Party Republicans from the land, à la St. Patrick and the snakes, with their cymbals and their incense and their flowers?  Because I have to say, there was nothing positive about the confrontations at the cancelled Trump rally in Chicago the other day.  Or the African-American man who got punched in the stomach by a Trump supporter at another rally.

The CNN interview and Ms. Hughes’ comments came in the aftermath of some things The Donald had said earlier in the day.  He was speaking about the possibility of a brokered (read, contested) Republican National Convention.  He said that by the time the convention was convened, if he had more delegates than the other remaining candidates, and if he did not then get the nomination, “‘I think you’d have riots.  I think you’d have riots,’ Trump said Wednesday on CNN’s ‘New Day.’  ‘I’m representing a tremendous many, many millions of people.’”

Yes he is:  millions and millions of angry, fearful, aging white people.

Oh sure, there are others who support The Donald.  A group of Muslims have put up a Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/Muslims-for-Trump-1676586042564566/).  They’re using a hashtag of  #‎makeamericagreatagaininshallah.  Seriously.  You cannot make up things like this.

Muslims for Trump (MfT) makes about as much sense as (and perhaps even less sense than) the Log Cabin Republicans.  Come on … the Republicans don’t love you, LGBTQIA people!  They don’t love Muslims, either.

Actually, there is an exception to that.  They love Muslims, LGBTQIAs, Latinos, African-Americans, and Socialists every four years, on the first Tuesday in November – but only if you vote for the Republican candidates.

One comment on the MfT Facebook page, from a woman of distinctly white European descent (I have omitted her photograph and name in the interest of protecting the stupid), reads, “I just want to say thank you to whoever started this page. Trump is the only candidate for 9-11 truth. Thousands of Muslims who were not responsible for 9-11 have been killed as a byproduct of this false war started by the globalist new world order.”

While the first part of her last sentence is true (“Thousands of Muslims …”), the latter part (“… globalist new world order.”) is not.  I think this sort of comment is attributable to one of three things:

  1. Efforts by the American education system to teach critical thinking are an abject failure.
  2. The Texas State Board of Education has too much influence over which text books American schools use (see #1 above).
  3. It’s because of the fluoride in the drinking water!  (Fringe conservatives have been trying to warn us about this for decades, but did we listen?)

I am reminded now of a fake Time Magazine cover that came out just after George W. Bush was “elected” in November 2000 (yes, the quotes are on purpose, and if you were paying attention that year, you know why).  Here’s the cover:

 W fukked

Were The Donald to actually get elected to the presidency later this year (May Allāh Protect Us!), you could substitute his face for W’s and this would still be relevant.

Thomas Jefferson wrote that “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.”  Perhaps so, but he left us with no clear guidance as to how to tell the difference between the patriots and the tyrants.





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The Duce of New York City

“… and for the life of me I could not quite comprehend what hidden springs he undoubtedly unloosed in the hysterical mob which was greeting him so wildly.”

— William L. Shirer, Berlin Diary


You may be tired of hearing the analogies being made between Donald Trump and Adolph Hitler (though the strutting and the uplifted chin and the theatrics remind me more of Mussolini than Hitler).  You may wish the whole circus would fold up and slink away in the night (and who can blame you?).  You may be a supporter of The Donald, and you’re really, really angry about the condition of the country and the condition of your paycheck.  You may even consider yourself a member of the Silent Majority (a term I thought we buried along with the Nixon presidency).  I’ve seen those signs lately, in videos of Trump rallies:  “The Silent Majority Stands With Trump.”  They’re all professionally printed, by the way, not hand made.

A great many of us used to think Trump was merely a buffoon, incapable of being a serious politician.  Some of us still think so.  It’s instructive to recall that a lot of people, powerful politicians and businessmen, thought Hitler was a buffoon in the 1920’s, and that if he ever came to power, they could control him.  The great fear now raging through the supposedly establishment component of the Republican Party is that they have realized they can control neither Mr. Trump nor the people voting for him.

Trump’s willful ignorance or rearranging of facts; his inflammatory statements about Muslims, Mexicans, and Meghyn Kelly; and his increasingly authoritarian rhetoric, are all bad enough.  The scenes from Chicago last evening at a subsequently-cancelled Trump rally are another matter, as was Trump’s response to it.

When I saw video of what arguably was an incipient riot, I thought first of another riot in Chicago; the one that took place during the 1968 Democratic National Convention.  Large numbers of mostly young people had come to the city to protest against the war in Viet Nam, and LBJ’s unrelenting prosecution of it.  On the night of 28 August, thousands of protesters who had peacefully gathered in Grant Park were brutally attacked by several thousand Chicago policemen.  It was later said that, watching footage of the riot on their televisions that night and the next day, is when many people decided to vote for Richard Nixon in the up-coming election, an election Nixon won in a landslide.

In 1968, people saw the violence, and the obvious disarray in the Democratic Party, as a reason to vote Republican.  In 2016, the violence on display yesterday (in both St. Louis and Chicago), and the disarray in the Republican Party, will be interpreted by many as proof of everything that Donald Trump is saying and insinuating, thus increasing their determination to vote for him in the coming primaries, hoping thereby to increase their chances of being able to vote for him in November.

In 1968, protesters were attacked by cops.  In 2016, they’re attacked by Trump supporters.  In 1968, Mayor Richard Daly unapologetically supported the actions of his police department.  In 2016, Trump apologized without actually doing so, claimed he was rescheduling the rally to avoid violence and injuries, and then cast himself as a victim.  “You can’t even have a rally in this country anymore,” he said.  This, from the man who not long ago said he’d like to punch a protester in the face.  This from the man who quite recently defended one of his supporters who did in fact punch a protester.

I have written elsewhere that in 1968, the year I dropped out of college and volunteered for the Army, it looked like America was coming apart at the seams.  Forty-eight years later, it looks that way again.

Ron Paul liked to talk about a revolution, and Bernie Sanders is actively talking about a political revolution in America.  Meanwhile, Donald Trump is creating a revolution, by harnessing the anger of millions of mostly white working and middle class people who have felt left out and left behind for a very long time.  It is only now, however, that they have found someone who is willing to articulate that anger and turn it into a political weapon.  All of this makes me wonder:  How far are we now, from our own Kristallnacht?

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Schadenfreude or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Donald

Internet Headlines: *

GOP nears its breaking point as Donald Trump rolls toward nomination
Donald Trump is on the verge of winning the Republican nomination, and the GOP is plummeting into a civil war that promises to redefine the party – or destroy it entirely.

Reid: Trump a ‘monster’ created by GOP
Referencing a Washington Post op-ed’s headline, Senator Harry Reid called Donald Trump the GOP’s Frankenstein “monster” while speaking on the Senate floor on Wednesday.

Super Tuesday exit poll results: Who is voting for Donald Trump?
Voters for Donald Trump today look a lot like those who supported him in previous contests, according to results from the NBC News Exit Poll. A majority of his voters have no college degree. In comparison, among those voting for other candidates, about four in 10 are not college graduates.


Newspaper Headline: **

GOP caught in identity crisis
“ ‘It’s scary,’ South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, who has endorsed Rubio, said on ABC’s ‘This Week.’ She added, ‘I think what [Trump will] do to the Republican Party is really make us question who we are and what we’re about. And that’s something we don’t want to see happen.’ ”




Do you think the country is ready for a remake of the 1931 classic film “Frankenstein,” which starred Boris Karloff as the Monster? Mitch McConnell would play Dr. Henry Frankenstein, while Paul Ryan would play Fritz, the doctor’s hunchbacked assistant. Frankenstein’s fiancée Elizabeth, charmingly played by Carly Fiorina,

arrives just as Henry is making his final tests. He tells them to watch, claiming to have discovered the ray that brought life into the world. They watch Frankenstein and the hunchback as they raise the dead creature on an operating table, high into the room, toward an opening at the top of the laboratory. Then a terrific crash of thunder, the crackling of Frankenstein’s electric machines, and the hand of Frankenstein’s monster begins to move, prompting Frankenstein to shout ‘It’s alive!’.”

The film will be shot in black and white. The monster will be played by Donald Trump.

One problem with this idea is that the movie will probably more nearly resemble the 1974 horror comedy film “Young Frankenstein” than the earlier production. It will still be shot in black and white (of course!), but the Monster will lock out the doctor and take over his laboratory, the better to create new monsters of his own design.

When the Transylvanian peasants learn that the monster is in control of Dr. Frankenstein’s castle, they take up their pitchforks and their torches and march through the night to the gates of the gothic pile Dr. Frankenstein calls home. Upon their arrival, the Monster appears in a window of the tallest tower, and begins to harangue them, and tell them what idiots and losers the Transylvanian government is. They’ve been cheated and lied to by the feckless establishment politicians running things from distant Cluj. They’ll be a lot better off when they’re Cluj-less, the Monster says, and not only that, he will build a wall, a huge wall, between Transylvania and Moravia, to keep the Moravians from sending their criminals and drug addicts south into Transylvania, and he’ll make the Moravians pay for it. The Monster will make Transylvania great again, he says, just like it used to be a hundred years ago.

The mob cheers madly, and they chant, “Transylvania! Transylvania! Transylvania!” The Monster comes down from the tower and is carried away on the shoulders of the peasants, who ensconce him in the town hall, where he will rule over them forever and ever.

The End.


* All internet headlines appeared on msnbc.com on 2 March 2016

** Denver Post, 29 February 2016


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Will Rogers and Yellow Dogs


The Democratic caucuses were held here in Colorado last night. I went, because I never pass up an opportunity to vote. I also went because I wanted to cast my vote for Bernie Sanders.

It was quite a scene at the neighborhood high school. Nine or ten precincts were each having their caucus there, and it quickly became apparent that the caucus workers were overwhelmed. I’ve attended several of these events over the years, and this is the largest turnout I have ever seen. I would say there were between 800 and a thousand people attending, for those precincts alone. The crowd was larger than in 2008, when Obama and Hillary Clinton were vying for the Democratic nomination. Statewide, over 121,000 people came out to vote last night.

You have to sign in for a caucus, so they know that you’re registered to vote (as a Democrat) and that you live in the precinct in which you’re voting. Sign-in tables had been set up in the hallway for that purpose, but that’s where the organization ended. No one knew which line was which, and some people had no clue as to which precinct they live in. There was a lot of milling around, and caucus workers with bullhorns, or just loud voices, were calling out precinct numbers and trying to herd people into some semblance of order.

The whole thing put me in mind of something Will Rogers wrote in 1935: “I am not a member of any organized party — I am a Democrat.” Things haven’t changed much in the last eighty years.

As I said, I went last night to show my support for Bernie Sanders. I was pleased to discover that I was not alone. In fact, of the 70 people there from my precinct, 46 voted for Bernie and 24 for Hillary. That seems to be the pattern statewide: as of this writing, Bernie has carried Colorado by 59% to 41% for Hillary.

I don’t know if the size of the turnout helped Bernie more than it did Hillary, but I suspect it did. What I do know, is that there were a great many people there who had never attended a caucus before. After everyone was signed in, all the precincts gathered in the auditorium for some preliminary remarks. The site supervisor for the caucus asked for a show of hands by first-time caucus attendees. A very large percentage of the crowd raised their hands.

Disorganization aside, it was encouraging to see so many people take the time to spend a few hours on a Tuesday evening, in order to participate in the democratic process of selecting a candidate for president. The fact that Bernie Sanders had secured the allegiance of a majority of the participants was especially gratifying.

Interestingly, no one tried to convince Bernie supporters to come over to Hillary, nor did any Hillary supporters try to get any of us to change our minds. If they had, I suppose the issue of electability would’ve come up; the idea that Hillary, being a more establishment candidate (whatever that means in this extremely odd election year), is more electable than someone like Bernie Sanders, a 74-year-old, Jewish, self-avowed Democratic Socialist.

I came mentally prepared to counter any such arguments, had they come up. I know all about Hillary’s record, and her experiences as First Lady, Senator, and Secretary of State. She’s done a lot of fine things, and has also done a lot of questionable things; things which, if she secures the nomination, will no doubt be raised by whomever the Republicans nominate (more on that in a moment). I accept the mixed record. Whose record is unblemished, after all?

Nevertheless, her political views, and her political and financial connections, all put her a bit to the right of center, as far as progressive Democratic positions are concerned. I read a piece on-line yesterday that described her as a moderate conservative. I think the term is correct. She supports all of the main pillars of progressive politics – a woman’s right to choose, racial equality (in both economic and legal justice terms), environmental protection, recognition that climate change is real, etc. – but her close relations with major financial institutions and Wall Street are a concern. So is her apparent militarism, vis-à-vis overseas interventions. Our success record with military interventions, and so-called nation building, is not even mixed; it’s a terrible failure. Hillary does not seem inclined to pull back from that sort of adventurism, though.

So, I went last night determined to vote according to my conscience, and my heart. Those both say to me that we have been voting for electable and credentialed establishment people for a long time, and it has not always served us well. Indeed, we seem to be sinking ever further into a state of huge financial imbalances in society – the rich get rich and the poor get poorer – while politicians seem more inclined to serve the donor class than the working class.

I realize that Bernie’s policy positions seem like pie in the sky to some, but we’ve tried the other route for a long time. I am willing to give the man a chance, because he fervently believes the same thing that he has fervently believed for the last 50 years; namely, that economic and social justice are the underpinnings of our democratic society, and those underpinnings have been chipped away at for decades now, under the onslaught of conservative politicians and their wealthy owners. Those politicians and their benefactors have, in fact, become ever more intransigent and ever further to the right in their positions and their tactics. They are now, I believe, inarguably anti-democratic and careless of the constitution to which they so loudly proclaim their unquestioning fealty.

That brings us to yellow dogs.

I grew up in Texas in an era when the term Solid South meant they voted solidly for the Democratic Party. People would talk about being a “yellow dog Democrat,” which meant that if a yellow dog were the Democratic candidate, you would vote for the dog before you’d vote for a Republican. I have no qualms about stating that I am a yellow dog Democrat, having voted only once in my life for a Republican candidate (for a minor state office in Colorado). I have regretted it ever since, and have no intention of making that mistake again.

This is especially true given the spectacle that is the Republican primary contest. It looks increasingly certain that The Donald will be the Republican nominee for president, which brings to mind another phrase from my formative years in Texas, a phrase that readily applies to The Donald (or whomever else the Republicans put up): I would not vote for him if the only thing he was running for was the city limits.

Accordingly, if Hillary is the Democratic nominee (which, in all honesty, seems to be the most likely outcome), I will support her and campaign for her most ardently. I will support her, and I will vote for her, but my heart belongs to Bernie. He would shake thing up in ways that they need to be shaken up; in ways that Hillary would never even consider doing, because that would discomfit her friends on Wall Street and elsewhere.

I take solace in the fact that, as a democratic nation, we have persevered, sometimes more successfully than others. But we have persevered and we have made some progress. Now, if we could just get a liberal on the Supreme Court, to replace Scalia.


“This country has gotten where it is in spite of politics, not by the aid of it. That we have carried as much political bunk as we have and still survived shows we are a super nation.” — Daily Telegram #1948, Will Rogers Favors Closing the Campaign Right Now and Letting The Boys Go Fishing  (1 November 1932)

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