Saturday, August 27, 2016

If you care about your children, grandchildren and generations to come, or if you believe this planet was created by a God who demands stewardship and accountability, you may want to give this some thought.

All this stagnation, polarization, indignation and deadlock have been great fun, and I hate to be a killjoy, but we have serious issues that threaten to ruin our fun. Nobody wants to hear this, but that does not make it less true.  This planet’s human population is currently growing at a rate of over 1.16% annually, which is an increase of nearly 80 million new mouths to feed every year. Regardless of what you would prefer to ignore or deny, we face a future in which those numbers will become increasingly unsustainable.  Food and water will be in increasingly short supply, as will all other natural resources.  At the same time, most scientists agree our planet’s ocean levels will continue to rise, threatening major cities and driving their populations inland.  In conjunction with these challenges, our weather is likely to become increasingly volatile and unpredictable, with floods and droughts making life difficult and affecting our ability to raise crops to feed the growing population. So here’s something for you to think about. This fall we will either elect people who are prepared to address these challenges and work together for solutions before its too late, or we will elect people who either deny the existence of these challenges entirely, or evidently believe our species incapable of addressing them in an adult, responsible way. Sadly, it could go either way. Personally, I plan to vote for people who have proven themselves capable of behaving like adults and working together toward a bright future during increasingly challenging times. If you care about your children, grandchildren and generations to come, or if you believe this planet was created by a God who demands stewardship and accountability, you may want to give this some thought. SC

I’ve posted things like this before and I generally have second thoughts and delete them. The fact is however, there are many people who have their bowels all in an uproar today because of some candidates’ deleted emails, or another candidate’s tax issues, or whether between them the couple next door may have too many or too few testicles to suit them. If they walked a mile in the shoes of the growing number of people all over the world who go to bed hungry or thirsty or homeless, they’d quickly change their attitudes and their priorities.   

Thursday, August 25, 2016

The poster child for everything un-American

I just heard someone who is very clearly the poster child for everything offensive, inappropriate, fraudulent, intolerant, inflammatory and un-American; call someone who has dedicated her entire life to tolerant, charitable, evenhanded causes, a bigot. I’m sorely tempted to address this statement, but for anyone who has been lucid and living on planet earth in recent years, that should not be necessary. SC

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

When I was a little boy, there were frequent occasions each day when Mother would apply firm but gentle pressure to my ear, lead me to a quiet and secluded spot, and suggest a timeout. During these special times I was encouraged to reconsider my actions and let Mom know when I was confident I could be a better boy.  Now, in the early stages of my second childhood, I find a thoughtfully administered regimen of supervised timeouts once more essential to an acceptable and well-balanced behavior. SC

As a young man, it seemed I could get away with anything with absolute impunity. I could clean my plate at Grandma’s house, after a Thanksgiving feast, and still have room to singlehandedly devour an entire pie. Back in college, my friends and I could order several large pizzas and an entire pitcher of beer, and I’d match my cohort’s mug for mug and leave the table with practically no assistance. Back in elementary school, my buddies would consistently do detention for slipping a rubber snake in the teacher’s desk or inadvertently penning an answer to their wrist prior to a test, or the slightest infringement of acceptable scholastic behavior, and I could disturb the entire class with antics that would disrupt the senate, and almost inevitably wink at the teacher and come away unscathed. I seemed the exception to almost every rule. Sadly it seems the test of time has expunged my exemption. These days a sliver of mincemeat pie can bring on Narcolepsy, and my very best efforts at marital bliss entirely discombobulate the Misses. It’s as though she’s entirely immune to my boyish charm.  SC     

Monday, August 22, 2016

Page views for the month

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Friday, August 19, 2016

Stay calm and breathe people.

Thanks, but no thanks. I generally do just fine until I go to the Facebook news feed or the National news, and am overwhelmed and exasperated by all the foolishness.  You know what?  This country is just fine.  We have challenges, but we’re entirely capable of meeting them. We have experienced people in this country who are knowledgeable, qualified, and entirely capable of stepping up and doing everything necessary to meet our country’s needs. Now as always, we have passionate lunatics on the far right and left who delight in stirring the pot and drawing the rest of us into their delusional conspiracy theories and dire forecasts of gloom and doom. Fortunately for us and the world, our country is also blessed with a vast, moderate middle, who, barring something unforeseen and very unlikely, will turn out on election day and vote to continue pursuing our country’s time-honored goals: forming a more perfect Union, establishing and ensuring justice and domestic tranquility, providing for the common defense, promoting the general welfare, and securing the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our posterity. I fully intend to stay informed and vote, and there may well be occasions when I take the bait and respond to the foolishness, but I’m increasingly confident that sanity will prevail in the fall, and that our Nation, under God, indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for all, will continue its proud tradition as a shining city on hill and a reliable beacon of Freedom for the world, and that, despite a remarkably colorful and entertaining election process,  government of the people, by the people, and for the people shall not perish from the earth.  Stay calm and breathe people. We’ll all be okay if we just stick together. SC 

Comprehension is all about perspective; perspective is all about the big picture, and the more one travels the bigger the picture gets. SC

While the potential for joy in the future should never be underestimated, for most of us, there comes a time when our best hope for contentment is in reconciling ourselves to what is, and celebrating what was. SC

Monday, August 15, 2016

There are those who would have us believe that the religious liberty clause in the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution means that they are at liberty to tell others what to believe. In truth, in means exactly the opposite.

The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution states that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.” As enshrined in the First Amendment, religious freedom includes two complementary protections: the right to religious belief and expression and a guarantee that the government neither prefers religion over non-religion nor favors particular faiths over others. These dual protections work hand in hand, allowing religious liberty to thrive and safeguarding both religion and government from the undue influences of the other.

Monday, August 8, 2016

As a young man...

As a young man, I tended to envision time as a vast, unlimited resource. Time it seemed was an inexhaustible sea.  Now in the autumn of my life, each hour is increasingly precious, and I thirst for each minute as it drips away from an alarmingly finite pool. 

I recall puzzling as a young man, at the inclination of so many old folks to forsake the present and dwell upon the past, sometimes cutting all ties to here and now.  These days, whiling away the long, tedious afternoons, in a dreary house that’s all but abandoned, plagued with pains and tormented by my prospects, I drag the rocker up by the stove, stare into the coals, and soak myself in a warm bath of memories.

I remember sitting by a crackling fire, high in the Sierra Nevada’s, and listening to the ill-tempered Jerseys filing past, with their cowbells clanking, their babies bawling, and the old bull curling his lip and looking for work. I remember standing on the rough plank sidewalk, outside the Ivy House, inhaling the aroma of grilled ribs sizzling, over Manzanita coals, and watching the massive freight wagons lumber by, with their oxen lowing, their hames bells jingling, and the iron-clad rims of hickory spoke wheels smashing the gravel to dust, beneath their cumbersome tonnage of crocks of butter and barrels of fragrant cheese. I remember believing that my whole life would be a long and wondrous adventure.  And it was. 

Closing my eyes with the sun on my face and the patter of rain on canvas, my memory reflects a shimmering image of overnight outings long ago, when summer was perennial and I was a barefoot kid.  I remember the goose bumps and satisfying shivers as Grandma prepared me for bed, and washed my summer-hardened feet from the rocky banks of a brisk, babbling brook.  

I recall my Granddad’s twinkling eyes and his pleasant, raspy chuckle, as I hugged his neck and he rubbed his whiskery chin against my face.  Here on the hill where I raised my family, I revisit my time of parenthood, and recall priceless memories of my own mom and dad, ages ago when life seemed simple and childlike faith assured tomorrows joys. Treasure your memories, keep them fresh and never take them for granted.  Even our memories can fade with the harsh glare of time. SC

Sunday, August 7, 2016

My conscience is clear.

With the exception of my church membership and some volunteer work, I am essentially a hermit, and growing increasingly reclusive by the day. I have very little fear of being disenfranchised by anyone as the result of candidly expressing my views. I have no agenda beyond promoting what I believe is in the best interests of the America that I know and love, and unequivocally denouncing what I believe is not. Regardless of the election results of 2016, my conscience is clear.  How is yours?  SC

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Our electorate today is largely comprised of two distinct groups of constituents: old people, who miss the world for which their lives prepared them, and young people, preparing a world in which they hope to live. They are two entirely different worlds. One must increase. One must decrease. My money is on the youthful generation. SC

Am I my brother’s keeper?

"The phrase “my brother’s keeper” occurs in the context of the story of Cain and Abel in Genesis 4:1-9. After the Lord God had expelled Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden for their disobedience, Cain killed his brother Abel out of jealousy that God had found Abel’s sacrifice acceptable, but He had rejected Cain’s. After the murder, the Lord, knowing full well what had happened, asked Cain where Abel was. Cain’s response was "I do not know. Am I my brother's keeper?"

There is a grain of truth in this brazen lie, despite the surly response Cain offers to the God who created him. While no one is the absolute “keeper” of others in that we are not responsible for everyone’s safety when we are not present, every man is his brother’s keeper in that we are not to commit violent acts against them or allow others to do so if we can prevent it. This sort of “keeping” is something God rightfully demands of everyone, on the grounds of both justice and love. But Cain’s reply indicates a total lack of any kind of feeling for another human being—not to mention the absence of brotherly love—and the overriding presence of the kind of selfishness which kills affection and gives rise to hatred."
Our churches are no longer capable of meeting the needs of today’s overwhelming crisis of poverty and deprivation. If these needs are to be met, they must be met by we the people, in our capacity as a government of, by, and for its people. SC

Taken for the most part from an Internet source. SC


In the United States of America, people who live frugal, law abiding lives, reporting day after day, week after week, month after month, year after year, and decade after decade, to the very best job they’re able to find and perform, should have decent housing, affordable health care, and healthy food for their families. And they should not lose everything they own when they’re no longer able to work.  And here’s another simple truth: People who don’t believe this are not following Christ.  SC

Friday, August 5, 2016

I’m not an economist, but the problem with our economy today is not rocket science. Our difficulties today are not the result of a broken system.  They are the result of greed, corruption and abuse. Our economy today suffers from the effects of trickledown economics and those who support and sustain it. Its supporters argue that allowing corporations and the very privileged among us to absorb the vast majority of our country’s wealth will result is that currency trickling slowly down to those who perform the labor. Rarely do those who perform these tedious, backbreaking tasks enjoy the fruits of their labors. The vast majority of wealth created by their efforts goes directly to the spoiled aristocrats who sprawl on their ever-widening posteriors, collecting their perks, thumbing their noses, and enjoying what others provide through daily toil. Every budget, whether it is household, state, or federal, relies on cash flow in order to function. Because of the ineffectiveness, greed and abuses of trickledown economics, we have no cash flow today.  The vast majority of this country’s wealth flows directly to the top and stays there. This fall we have a choice.  We can continue enabling the apathy, contempt and indifference of the privileged class, or we can support those who advocate fair and equitable policies intended to reward those who actually support our system.  SC

Personally, I rarely consider voting for candidates who show no capacity for reason, cooperation and civility during their campaign. If they can’t be gracious and positive as a candidate, the likelihood that they will prove productive while in office is slim and none. SC

Thursday, August 4, 2016

It is not the election results of 2016 which will determine our country’s future.

While it is not my intention to underestimate in any way the importance of this year’s watershed election, the future peace and prosperity of our great nation may well rely as much on our response to the results, as on the results themselves. Regardless of the partisan balance of power in 2017, the future of the United States of America remains in the hands of we, the people. It is not the election results of 2016 which will determine our country’s future, but the extent of our resolve, devotion and allegiance to our grand, old flag and the Republic for which it stands, one nation, under God, indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for all.  SC

Hang in there, folks. We can do this.

An ol' Roger Miller tune suggests:

"Everything changes a little as it should,
Good ain't forever and bad ain't for good."

I'm still convinced there are better days ahead. If we just line up single file, just like kids in school, we'll each have someone leading our way, and someone to back us up.
Hold hands. Be polite. No pushing.  

Monday, August 1, 2016

Anyone who is unable to comprehend these basic concepts should never be elected to office.


Irreconcilable differences may be reason for divorce in a marriage of two unhappy or seemingly unsuited individuals. In a diverse and multifaceted society, irreconcilable differences are inherent and almost unavoidable.  Irreconcilable differences are not the problem with our government.  Irreconcilable differences are why it’s absolutely necessary that we preserve government. In a democratic, self-governing society, government is the only way to reach equitable, peaceful, mutually acceptable resolutions to what might otherwise represent irreconcilable differences. Because of America’s Constitution and all the other documents which provide and preserve the rules and regulations of our democracy, we have no irreconcilable differences. We achieve consensus and peaceful coexistence through negotiation, compromise and the never-ending efforts of a free, self-governing people.  SC     

Gridlock occurs when we elect individuals who are unable or unwilling to negotiate and compromise. Anyone who is unable to comprehend these basic concepts should never be elected to office.