Rhetoric of Change and Hope

American history academics spend a lot of time attempting to glean something of interest in Presidential Inaugural Addresses and generally fail.  While there have been a small group of Inaugural Addresses that held substantive value when they were given or historical value now,  generally speaking most are weak in rhetorical terms and platitudinous in content. […]

The Numbing Effect

As we move toward the end of the transition to a new President, it becomes harder and harder not to succumb to what I think of as the numbing effect of repeated actions on our measurement of what is, and what is not, acceptable.  The numbing effect takes place when your personal sense of what […]

Stop telling me what I can’t do!

A majority of Americans as represented by the Electoral Collage has just flashed a bird at the operations and supporting institutions of our national government. Over the last several decades, our national government has piled on top of the American people laws, rules and regulations saying “don’t do that” you can’t do that” and “this […]

Trump a whiner. Who knew?

Generally, I don’t watch  televised political debates.  Candidates are most often so scripted and their programmed responses to questions so dull and mechanical that you do not learn anything from them during the debate.  For the second Presidential debate of this pestilential year of national politics  I held my not worth watching position, but did […]

Tall Tales, Whoppers and “Post Truth”

I must admit that I am somewhat mystified by what has happened in public political discourse in Maine and around the country in the last few years.  Apparently, an environmental blogger named David Roberts gets the credit for creating the phrase “post truth” to describe today’s political and public discourse. When I first heard “post truth” used, […]

An American Fantasy

“Totalitarianism in any guise always represents not the result but the defeat of human reason, the cowardly retreat of human beings from real problems in the real world; it is an atavistic flight from responsibility into a dream (or nightmare) world of paranoid fantasies.” (Robert Goldston, “The Road Between the Wars: 1918-1941″, Dial Press 1978) […]

My Fellow Whitebreads

Not too long ago my son, for reasons which I must admit elude me, had a DNA test done to see what his genetic ancestry was.  One of the outcomes of that test was to determine that his father was 99.9999% northern European.  I could have told him that without the testing but he wanted […]