There’s a Better Way: The Nightmare of a Trump-Cruz-Wilson Regime

  November 9, 2016.   Good morning! You better sit down. Here, have a bagel. Need cream cheese? I’ve got a strong pot of coffee brewing. Trust me, you’ll want it black today.   Yep, that’s the morning paper. Last night’s General Election wasn’t a dream. It was a nightmare-come-true.   You have indeed awakened to an American Regime.   Donald Trump is Tyrant-Elect. Charlatan Ted Cruz is the de facto leader of the U.S. Senate. And Joe “You Lie!” Wilson continues his stagnant career in the U.S. House of Representatives as a Trump legislative henchman. . …   Fellow citizens, the frog is boiling in the pot. This stark political reality is mere months from happening.   Our Republican opponents know we’re worn out from the Presidential primaries. They know there’s a full calendar of cultural and athletic events waiting to distract us: March Madness, a summer of superhero blockbusters, then back to the gridiron in the Fall.   They just need us to fall asleep at the Election Wheel these next few months…   THEN BAM!   We’ll awaken to a Bombastic Billionaire in the White House, plus a…

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There’s a Better Way: The Fresh Air of Good Government

  A Brief Presentation to the Lexington County Democratic Party Executive Committee   Neighbors, I invite you to take a deep breath. Inhale. Exhale.   How did it feel? I don’t know about you, but I feel refreshed. Almost the entire day, I breathed the air of Good Government, in a public library.   This evening, again, I breathe the air of Good Government. This time in a meeting room in a public library in your fair county of Lexington—heart of the Second Congressional District of South Carolina. Nearly half of our District’s population resides within your borders.   Government is Good. Government is “We the People.” We are Government.   And when Government does its job—to link and protect individuals, communities, and industry—Government is a powerful, positive force.   Speaking of which: Public libraries are Government Diadems. Civic Jewels.   No one believed this more than a man named Ike. You may have heard of him. He was a 5-star General. He once wrote:   The libraries of America are and must ever remain the home of the free, inquiring minds.   He penned…

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There’s a Better Way: I’m Running for Congress in South Carolina

  “There’s a Better Way”   A Daughter’s View   Like every parent, I love my child beyond words. I want my young daughter to have the best opportunities in a peaceful, industrious world. I am running to represent the Second Congressional District of South Carolina because I am confident that our District can emerge from “Status Quo” Joe stagnation and work to create a better, more prosperous way for all.   This “all” includes you. It includes my daughter and your precious loved ones as well. In fact, it’s a “peoples everywhere” kind of all, in the tradition of Dr. King.   Several times a year, my daughter and I sit on the top steps of the South Carolina State House. We eat a picnic of crackers and cheese, apple slices, and grandma’s world-class chocolate chip cookies. We admire the view of the State House grounds. We discuss the meaning of history and symbols, and how “We the People” govern ourselves.   I have managed billion-dollar state programs, presented to governors and senators, shepherded legislation, and written speeches for numerous business and political leaders. But nothing has helped…

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An Open Letter to the World Regarding Donald Trump (p.s. Don’t Put off Tomorrow…)

  Dear Planet Earth Beyond the Borders of the Fruited Plain:   You are probably struggling to identify where Uncle Sam’s penchant for reality TV and WrestleMania begins and its Republican Presidential Candidate policies end. Sorry, most of the time, no obvious line separates the twain:   Mike “Gaza Gunpoint” Huckabee jumps off the top rope and clotheslines The Iron Sheik!   Where to begin? On behalf of all 322 million U.S. citizens, I apologize. Of course, a certain Republican presidential hopeful and his pitchfork minions would like to reduce that number to a comfortable 222 million White Americans. But who’s counting?    The only good news is that we don’t know whether said candidate will export or exterminate those 100 million non-White Americans if given the chance. Yes, I actually took a step down the genocidal warning path. Why? Because a political personality worthy of crossing the Godwin Line is finally in our midst.   Two years ago, I wrote: “To compare any U.S. politician to Adolf Hitler is simply idiotic and downgrading to the cause.” Well, I was wrong.   I didn’t realize Donald Trump was capable…

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Choosing a President for Alderaan Reasons: Modern Mythmaking & the “Dark Side” of Presidential Politics

Myth matters.   Gilgamesh slayed the great beast Humbaba. Persephone was abducted by Hades. Anubis weighs hearts at the threshold of eternity. There is great meaning to be gleaned from each of these mythological still shots, a meaning that does not depend on historical veracity, on whether they actually happened, or happen.   Oh, and here’s another one: Han Solo shot Greedo. First.   Again, myth matters. But modern myths may matter even more as we head into the heart of the 21st century and beyond. Homer had little use for sonic screwdrivers or tricorders, but it’s hard to imagine life in the pending centuries without some form of information magic wand—apologies to Thor’s Mjölnir.   Not all modern mythmaking is techno-laden, however. Neither the heroic brotherhood of Samwise Gamgee nor the swashbuckling courage of Reepicheep nor the scholarly witch-withal of Hermione require power couplings and warp drives. Even so, while no whirring T.A.R.D.I.S can ferry anyone to a point in space-time to witness their esteemed constitutions, these characters of true character are real in every ethical sense though they be composed…

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Humanity, Not Quite Ready for Civilization: Reverence for Life in a Washed-Up World

  Click to read Parts 1, 2, 3 and 4 in the “Humanity, Not Quite Ready for Civilization” series.   Sometimes you have to break a thing down into its simplest parts to understand it afresh.   At other times, you have to be broken, or nearly broken, by the Universe to understand a thing.   As I type this, the city where I reside, Columbia, South Carolina, has been inundated by a Once-in-a-Millennium Deluge. Literally more water than you can shake an insensitive Al Roker selfie at has fallen all around us. Businesses, homes, lives, washed away by raging floodwaters.   At present, we are without running water; we have no idea when we will regain running water. I had the foresight and enough life-in-Haiti experience to collect standing rainwater for toilets and other non-potable purpose. Plus I have a storehouse of bottled water to last four or five days—maybe a week. (Also, thank God I snagged the last two bags of Doritos at Target before it shut its doors. O, why didn’t I buy French onion dip?)   Most important of all, I have a Community. And I am an active member of my Community. People are reaching out to me to…

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Humanity, Not Quite Ready for Civilization: Enemy-Making, Resistance is Everything

  Click to read Parts 1, 2, 3 and 5 in the “Humanity, Not Quite Ready for Civilization” series.   Enemies. Imagine a world without them. Yeah, that’s usually how most genocides start. . …   Have you ever noticed that humans seem to need enemies? How, even in relatively peaceful conditions, we hominids go far out of our way to create a reason, to invent a false border, in order to declare our fellow thinking biped an adversary?   Case in point: we have reached that point in the calendar when Americans devote weekend time to decorating themselves in preparation for pigskin war against their fellow citizens. Metropolitan area will march against metropolitan area. Institution of higher education will stand against institution of higher education. Hatred and violence will ensue. (Seriously.) And all in the name of be-helmeted jocks advancing a leather prolate spheroid across a rectangular playing field at great risk of concussion and ligament snapping.   Touchdown! I hate you. Blocked extra point! I hate you too.   For this reason, Ohioans shall rise up against Michiganders. Tigers shall stand against Gamecocks….

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Money, Mammon, Meaning & the Musings of Robert Frost

    Money, Mammon, Meaning & the Musings of Robert Frost (CLICK HERE FOR FULL ARTICLE)       There is little doubt what Jesus meant when he lectured from the hillside that money is the root of all evil. Wait a second—don’t make any memes based on that quite yet. …       August 20, 2015 /…

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Humanity, Not Quite Ready for Civilization: MLK’s Audacious Belief

  Click to read Parts 1, 2, 4 and 5 in the “Humanity, Not Quite Ready for Civilization” series.   Have you ever stopped to ask yourself what Civilization means?   Nobel Peace laureate and philosopher Albert Schweitzer did. In his book, The Philosophy of Civilization, the great thinker writes: “We have drifted out of the stream of civilization because there was amongst us no real reflection upon what civilization is.”   Thus, let us reflect. I mean it. Unless you’re performing CPR on a hapless victim of Blue Shirt brutality, stop whatever you’re doing. Trust me, that viral spoof news story about Donald Trump choosing between Ted Nugent and a Donkey Dung Sea Cucumber as his VP running mate will be there five minutes from now.   Find a writing instrument and scratchpad or a cellphone Notes app or a stylus and clay tablet and take one minute of your life to write down your personal definition of “Civilization.”   {Here’s some supporting theme music while you write.}   Read your definition aloud. Post it in the comments section below, if you feel up to it.   Most dictionaries and…

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A Link for Our Future: An Independence Day Address to the People of South Carolina

  An address presented at the Take the Flag Down South Carolina Unity Festival, held upon the South Carolina State House Grounds on Independence Day 2015   I stand before you, honored and humbled that you would hear my words. If I have a title worth mentioning, it is “father of a young South Carolinian.”   Today I address many parents—mothers and fathers upon whose shoulders weigh the responsibility of interpreting for our children the many active symbols that surround us.   Not just interpreting, but guiding interpretation as well—as it is crucial to teach our children how to interpret symbols for themselves. Accurately. Wisely.   And for those who are not parents, we all share the experience of once being children. Once upon a time, parents, grandparents, family members, teachers and other adults guided us.   …   On Martin Luther King Jr. Day a few years ago, my daughter and I climbed the State House steps—there are 42, in case you ever wondered—and had a little picnic.   It’s a marvelous view, by the way. Head up there sometime with a snack and a thermos of…

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