Right, Wrong, and the Character of a Nation

It would appear that we face a political crisis which many liken to the days of Watergate.  While there are similarities, what we face today is unlike anything we have faced before, and we are lying to ourselves if we do not admit that and dooming ourselves if we do not face it.

During the Nixon administration everyone knew that breaking into the Watergate Hotel was wrong.  Everyone knew  that Nixon’s cover-up of that break-in was wrong.  Both Republicans and Democrats looked at the evidence and knew it was wrong.  It wasn’t just illegal; it was wrong.  Nixon placed the well-being of his presidency and his party above that of the country and the law and the congress and the country said “that’s not right.”  Members of his own party went to Nixon and told him his presidency could not survive what he had done.  He may have been “Tricky Dick,” but he wasn’t a “Stupid Dick.”   He resigned. Continue reading

The Iron Mask of the Mind

There’s something about this election that baffles me.

It has always seemed to me that climate change is the most important challenge we face now or will face any time in the near future.  I’m hardly alone in that thought, of course.

Bernie Sanders said it outright and was mocked by many on the right.

If we continue on our current path we will, according to scientists, make large portions of our earth uninhabitable in the future.

But if we truly believe our scientists (as we progressive Democrats say we do), if we really believe that we are about to face massive population shifts, droughts, sea level rise requiring the abandonment of huge portions of the world’s coastlines, why are we talking about almost everything BUT climate change in this election?  If the US military has climate change as “significant threat to national security”(1), why is it that the US House and Senate can’t even admit it exists? Continue reading

How We Got To This Point – Part II

“America is great because she is good,” according to a quote generally attributed to Alexis de Tocqueville.  “If America ceases to be good, America will cease to be great.”

Hillary Clinton alluded to these words in her acceptance speech at the Democratic National Convention.  “And in the end, it comes down to what Donald Trump doesn’t get:  that America is great – because America is good”

Before Hillary, Bill Clinton quoted them almost verbatim in 1994, and before him Dwight Eisenhower used the line in a 1952 speech.  Continue reading

Why Bernie

Pleasant Progressive LogoMore than a few Democrats I love and respect are considering supporting Bernie Sanders in the 2016 presidential primary election. The Democratic field is all of two people, and the other candidate is a household name with exceptional political pedigree—so the decision to vote for a relatively unknown “democratic socialist” Senator from Vermont is not the path of least resistance. If you’re a Bernie fan, I assume you’ve chosen to support him because you’ve read, you’ve studied, and you’ve differentiated. If you’re on the fence, I ask that you do just a bit more reading, studying, and differentiating before you buy into “feeling the Bern.” I respectfully submit the following six questions for your consideration in this effort. Continue reading