License To Hate


We have become such an “in-the-moment” society always searching for that singular rush, craving that fleeting buzz of pleasure. The concepts of forethought, responsibility, and repercussions in relation to our actions are nearly non-existent and are at best viewed as arcane, irrelevant in a licentious world. In a pleasure oriented society, the goal becomes feelings.

Each bump against convention is replaced with a deepening revolt against the norm as the heady flush of rebellion is dulled in turn demanding some new outrage to fulfill the ever burgeoning need to feel. Guilty pleasures are no longer enough so tantrums become the vehicle to supply the sensory demands. Violence is mixed in to create the greater escalation until finally layered with the ultimate payback. When the moment or even moments pass in the quest to feel, the king of the mountain surveys the wreckage upon which he or she stands  only to once again face the expanse of emptiness.

In times past, this pattern of self-destruction would be attributed to youthful waywardness and/or a individual’s propensity to learn things the hard way. Sadly now it seems the insatiable quest for feelings has rubbed the natural sensors so raw that we are dulled witless beyond even the natural cycle of lessons learned. Like the punch drunk pugilist, we are simply flailing against shadows and blurred images as the brain’s cognitive abilities shut down and the boxer falls unconscious.

No where was this better exemplified than the outrageous behavior at the campus of U.C. Berkeley. In an insane battle of anarchist versus anarchists, the most violent prevailed as the cowards in leadership of the school quailed in the face toddler-like tantrums. The First Amendment suffered another loss.

Across the broad spectrum of leadership in our Nation, from parenting to government, leadership has failed its society by accepting the childish excuse of “He made me do it!” as reasons for pathetic behavior instead of responding with the time proven principle of “I’m not dealing with him, I’m dealing with you!”, which forces said childish perpetrator to embrace the edicts of personal responsibility. The First Amendment allows for Milo Yiannopoulos’ despicable speech. It affords for students to protest his speech. It does not allow for violence to shut down the aforementioned despicable speech.

I don’t know much about Milo and this new alt-right, which is hijacking the conservative movement. What little I have read is repulsive to me and violates my core beliefs. But free speech is not free unless it is free for everyone and if my beliefs are so fragile that I cannot hear other beliefs contrary to mine, then my beliefs are fragile indeed and not worthy of my trust.

I watch now the vicious swing of the political pendulum and the punch back that is becoming the norm wondering if it will ever stop. Both sides keep pointing and saying “They made me do it!” I agree with Senator Marco Rubio when he warns we are flirting with a complete destruction of the treasure of civil debate. We cannot critique the President from either side, in the last eight years or with this new President, without a barrage of attacks and hate.

Yes, it is true that for eight years the left protected the President with blind loyalty and fealty that was appalling at best. Yet now it seems the strike back for this President is the same fealty that precludes him from any criticism without backlash. The mistakes of the last regime are not a license for the hate and retribution that I see from so-called conservatives as of late. If we truly want to make America Great Again we must remember that decency and civility was once the hallmark of this great Nation and avoid the shortsighted desire for the fleeting pleasure of payback, power, and to be king of the mountain.1

So You’re Scared Now?


The recent rants of fear and even some hysteria coming from the left over the inevitable Trump presidency has many of my conservative colleagues gloating in the anticipation of at least four years of retaliation. I cannot embrace this new normal as the swings of the political pendulum are becoming dizzying at best. This is not what our Forefathers envisioned.

While I do not concur with Diane Feinstien that the whole world is living in fear at the looming shadow of a Donald Trump, I should remind said conservative colleagues that it was not but a few years ago that we were fearing and prognosticating the demise of this Republic at the hands of one Barack Obama. It didn’t happen. Though shaken and weakened, the Republic has survived. (At this point I’d like to ask those same said conservative colleagues if they could kindly reexamine the title “conservative” they have affixed to themselves and help me understand what their new version is because there is a whole lot of stuff now that is “OK” for “conservatives” to advocate for that was not “OK” for conservatives to advocate for before that flaming display of idiocy, otherwise known as the Republican Presidential Primary, occurred this past summer.)

So whatever tired, tortured, melded, manipulated, rehashed, regurgitated version of conservative you are, we need to remember that a large portion of the nation is feeling the same fears we felt for 8 years. Yes, even some of us conservatives, pre-primary conservatives, have very real concerns with this President. It’s true that thus far, with the exception of Rex Tillerson, I have been thankful for the sake of my nation to be proven wrong with Trump’s cabinet picks. But with the handful of pre-primary conservatives left who have concerns about Donald Trump’s ego and overreaches combined with the litany of liberals who are hand wringing distraught with visions of dire calamities with the second coming of Hitler, it’s safe to say that a large portion of the American populace are at best suspicious of the incoming administration.

So to my liberal friends I ask this question: Have we come to a common place of understanding? Do we understand now why the Constitution was intended to be a document of “negative liberties” as President Obama so famously accused? Can we see now why the Executive Branch should never wield unchecked power and ignore Congress as it has under both Presidents Obama and also Bush?

With our Republic’s system of checks and balances in place and obeyed, no people’s should need fear the election of a President. No persons should fear that the President will use the power of his office to target them based on their faith, ideology, ethnicity, or political persuasion. If a dressmaker refuses to design or sell the First Lady a dress or a baker refuses to bake a cake because it violates their personal beliefs, let them face the repercussions of their decision on the market where they compete, not underneath the whip of government.

Are we all now starting to see why our Founders believed so strongly in severely limiting the power and scope of government? Can we all now see the value of a government that fears the people rather than a people that fear their government? Can we all now see, both conservative and liberal, that looking for a one man solution, a king, is lazy dangerous solution?

It is time for the pendulum to stop its swing before we truly do the damage we fear to the Republic. Our Founders did not fear so much the ideology of those in the Presidency as much as they feared a President who would not honor the restraints of the Constitution. President Trump and the Republicans have this opportunity to restore the Constitutional system of Checks and Balances to this Republic, which it desperately needs. If these so-called conservatives do not work to stop the pendulum’s swing, then shame on them, for history will recall their names as the catalyst to the demise of this great Republic when the Nation called to them for peace and they heeded it not.

Of Beliefs, Convictions, and Gronk’s Party Boat


Much has been made this election season of the amount of Christians that are voting for Donald Trump. To help quantify the consternation, many have floated ideas to the why and how of the disconnect between the professed beliefs of Christians and the history of Donald Trump varying from the issues of the day outweigh personal beliefs to Trump is the second coming of Cyrus the Great…wow, on that last one. I’m leaning more towards the less apocalyptic explanation with a much simpler and fundamental twist.


It boils down to beliefs and convictions. Just as many who call themselves conservatives, tea partiers, or libertarians have shown a complete lack of conviction on their professed beliefs in the constitution to vote for Trump, so have Christians been exposed for their lack of conviction concerning their Biblical beliefs. Simply put, times of desperation show the courage of your convictions. Many Christians of today simply don’t believe the Bible.


“Now hold on,” some of you might say, “haven’t you ever held your nose to vote for someone?” Yes, I’m a conservative Republican in the State of Maine. I have permanent scar tissue in my nose from holding my nose so much. Still, never in my life have I had to deal with a candidate in my party that violates every belief system that I have on every single level, which is compounded by the fact that the man is a pathological liar.


Those of you that have followed my column/blog may remember that one of the mantras I preach is to never believe what a candidate says during a campaign. Look at what they have done and said outside of the election year, in their life history. So now we have this man, who has crafted a whole new persona for this election, which continues to morph hither and yon, whither the winds blow in his best interest, and I am supposed to turn a blind eye, soul, and intellect to the warning billboards littered all along the road of destruction Donald Trump has paved?


I think not. Truly, Donald Trump has become the Republican Barack Obama. Trump’s followers were interviewed in the latest caucus in Nevada. The overwhelming reason they gave for voting for the man was change. Where have we heard that before? The billionaire refuses to give details on his policy but is big on grand promises with no substance. Where have we heard that before?


All those that oppose him, he mocks, humiliates, and demeans. Saul Alinsky? Where have we heard that before? The only difference between Obama and Trump is that, where as Obama is willing to trample the Constitution to achieve his goals, Trump will crush and pulverize the Constitution to achieve his. Imagine the day, and it will come if Trump is elected, that we would prefer Obama.


He believes single-payer healthcare works, is for universal healthcare, has a history of supporting gun control, supports raising taxes, establishing mandates, pro-abortion, pro-gay marriage, supports Eminent Domain and has a rabid following that defends his questionable past. No, I’m not talking about Barack Obama. This is Donald Trump. They’re both big fans of Hillary Clinton, which could explain why Trump will be taking the stand on trial for fraud. My goodness, we could have two Presidential candidates splitting time between the campaign trail and standing trial for felony charges.


And for Christians, the man opened the first strip joint casino, brags openly about sleeping with other men’s wives, publicly joked that he’d like to date his daughter because of her beautiful body, his latest wife,who would be First Lady, poses sans clothing in various racy glossies, and has used questionable business practices to bilk people out of their personal wealth. He claims to read the Bible every day and we believe him? What Bible? The Hugh Hefner version?


It is increasingly clear to me that people cannot believe the things they say they believe and support this man. It’s more a desire to follow the crowd like kids hopping on the Gronk Party boat to be part of the “in group”. Once again, it’s not about truth. It’s about hope and change!

Update: New information has surfaced that shows Trump preferred to use foreign workers rather than pay American workers to build his Florida hotels and Trump Towers.

Update: David Duke, former KKK Grand Wizard, has come out to publicly support Trump.



Bi-Partisanship, Folly, and Fantasy


The rookies are in! With the legislature now in full swing, the freshmen members have descended upon Augusta. These have come, with visions of their own grandeur rife with the fantasy of how their silver tongue and persona, steeped in the magnanimous, will alone bridge the partisan divide. Soon, the rude awakening will occur, or so we hope.

Why do I hope for a rude awakening? It may help the reader to understand my disdain of the modern clamor for bi-partisanship if we first examine the partisan divide. For this purpose, I will borrow and embellish an illustration from a columnist far more accomplished and respected than I, Peggy Noonan. This is from a column she wrote in the Wall Street Journal a few years ago entitled “Why Its Time for the Tea Party”.

Ms. Noonan likens the partisan divide to the increments on a yardstick. The one-inch mark would represent the extreme right, what some call “right of reason”. The 36-inch mark would represent those on the left, who just transported in from their spaceship through the StarGate on moonbeams. The 18-inch would represent the middle ground or the Nirvana of bi-partisanship.

While media elites, the Democrat Party, and moderate Republicans continue to loudly decry the lack of bi-partisanship from Conservatives and Conservative Republicans alike (Yes, there are some true Conservative Republicans that still exist.), the true reasons for the political divide are ignored either by intent or lack of political gravitas. The prevailing system of governance of today would be settled somewhere around the 28-inch mark in Ms. Noonan’s ideological yardstick. Conservatives would like the government to be running somewhere in between 5 and 10 inches but the yardstick seems to be increasingly tilted towards the 36 inch mark at an alarming pitch.

This is infuriating to voters, who have clearly spoken to their candidates on the campaign trail and have an expectation of legislative behavior based upon campaign promises. The elected legislators once in office are immediately barraged with a call for bi-partisanship and are assured that this is what the majority of people want. But the negotiations are happening at the 28-inch mark and, when Republicans hold up their accomplishments, with an “it could be worse” smile, the people throw their hands up in disgust. We are still at 28 inches, in fact, its now 28 and ¾ inches. We haven’t gained an inch.

The people are outraged! The Democrats and moderate Republicans admonish Conservatives for their lack of bi-partisanship, more concessions are made to salve the perceived political faux pas, and the Nation and States slide deeper into the mire of Socialism. Republicans are left looking like buffoons.

True and healthy bi-partisan tension can only occur on the flat plains of the middle ground. Bi-partisanship will never work until some courageous partisans refuse to be thwarted in their resolve to pull the mired wagon of government back to the 18-inch mark. Then and only then can bi-partisanship function on equal footing.

The fantasy of many Republicans to be that bridge over troubled partisan waters will never come to fruition as long as this fallacy of bi-partisanship exists. It is folly to build a bridge on anything other then a solid footing. We have wasted too much energy constructing monuments to futility in the mire only to see them sink away. Its time to pull back to the high ground of common sense, where negotiations truly work.