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Don’t trust the polls

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I just took this poll from sidewith.com and came up with Donald Trump. The problem with these polls is that they only reflect what the candidates say, not what they actually believe. Quite frankly, I do not trust the man, and put him somewhere below Gary Johnson and Bernie Sanders, in that order.

But it was entertaining. YMMV

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May it not be in vain …

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Fort Logan National Cemetery, Denver, Colorado.  My mother and fathers remains are here, two out of 122,000 grave sites. One stone here has my father’s name on the front side, and my mother’s name on the reverse.
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My last visit there was in 2005.  I doubt that I will make the trip visit it again.  I am finally at peace with their passing. There is no going home again for me in this lifetime.

But during my last visit, I watched as four aging Viet Nam veterans visited the graves of their comrades. Their faces were grim as they unerringly made their way from one comrades stone to another in that vast sea of white marble.  I choked back the tears as a sense of futility overcame me. Few indeed will escape the icy clutches of the reaping angel, and we can only hope that it wasn’t in vain that they served.

Our hope is in a hereafter, not in our past.

 

Sour Grapes

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“When that time comes, Mikha’el, the great prince who champions your people, will stand up; and there will be a time of distress unparalleled between the time they became a nation and that moment. At that time, your people will be delivered, everyone whose name is found written in the book. Many of those sleeping in the dust of the earth will awaken, some to everlasting life and some to everlasting shame and abhorrence. But those who can discern will shine like the brightness of heaven’s dome, and those who turn many to righteousness like the stars forever and ever.

But you, Dani’el, keep these words secret, and seal up the book until the time of the end. Many will rush here and there as knowledge increases.”

1One morning you awaken, just like you have 12,786 other days in your life, and you realize that it is over with.  Men march off to war, and the old warhorse in you wants to march off with them, knowing far more about the wretchedness of war than the most vocal peacenik would ever know. Not that they really care. They are driven by fine words and platitudes.

Wages rise, wages fall. Mankind’s old discredited philosophies of government become brand new to a clueless generation. You rise up from your chair in protest, but your voice is lost in the clichés of a new movement. And you throw up your hands and sit down in bitter dissent.

But that is the way it has always been. When the klaxon sounds, will they realize the danger they are in? Not that many could tell you what a Klaxon is anymore. I suppose Klaxon’s have been replaced with a melodic chime and a calm, carefully worded virtual voice.

My generation saw the excesses of three merciless dictators. One was defeated by the world. One was defeated by its on excess. And one was defeated by a vanquished people. All while this generation slept.

So I too seal up my words. Slut shaming and clichés are the tactics of the elite today, and the wise among them is purged. They can have their slogans, they can eat of their fruits, until starvation and want creep up unannounced to destroy them in one season. Who cares?

Update on Augie: Why I do what I do

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1This is Augie. Or for the short hour and a half he rode with me, he was known as Aggie. Aggie went from a rescuer to a police dog trainer in San Antonio who trains dogs for police work, and gives them to police departments free.

I picked Augie of from a transporter who was bringing him from Texas Star Rescue in Longview, Texas and delivered him into the loving hands of a transporter who took him on in to Universal K9 in San Antonio, Texas.

Augie was frightened of people, and hid his head in the corner when you approached him. He came with a warning to not grab him by the collar, but once you had him on a leash, he was OK. He seemed OK with me, and I was careful to not approach him head on, but rather came up along his side. When I held the leash snap out, he came right up and presented his collar to me. He rode in the back seat of my van, not looking around, nor accepting any treats by hand.

But he apparently took very well to the training, and one of his trainers told me that ever so often he reverted to his old habits. But the officer in the picture and he seem to have become fast friends. You can tell it with his relaxed alertness and the way he stands beside his officer. I understand he already has one bust under his belt.

I am glad that people occasionally let me know what is going on with my transports. I do wonder an care about their future.

You rock, Augie Doggie!

No, GOP, I will not go along, nor do I have to. No, Trumpers, I will not go along, nor do I have to.

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No, GOP, I will not go along, nor do I have to.
No, Trumpers, I will not go along, nor do I have to.

I have had to do quite a bit of soul searching the last couple of days. Trumps win in the GOP has signaled to me that the party has moved significantly away from my own core values. Over the years, I have learned to look to what a man puts his hand to rather than his rhetoric when I am taking his measure. I know what Trump has avowed. I know what Trump has done. The two views don’t jibe and the man doesn’t measure up.

I could go into a whole litany of exposing his duplicity, but it doesn’t matter now. Trumpers aren’t going to be swayed by that, and Trumps detractors already know them.

Politics is a compromise solution. If you are a single issue voter, you will certainly be disappointed at every turn, and for years, I accepted that, and supported the nominee. I even voted unenthusiastically for John McCain, who I think gamed the system in a far dishonest manner than Trump.

But Trump is just a bridge too far for me. I will throw my vote away on the Libertarian candidate this year, though I am not truly a libertarian. I don’t even know who the Libertarian candidate is, and really don’t need to know at this point. It doesn’t matter, since he doesn’t have the remotest chance of winning anyway.

This will be the first time since 1964 that I have not voted Republican at the national level. Barry Goldwater was the first ever Presidential vote I cast, and even though he lost to some very clever left wing propaganda, he became the de facto founder of modern Conservativism. Republicans were so incensed at Democratic Party character assignation of Goldwater that they re-united in a way that carried through to this day. So politically, I am a Goldwater Republican, not a Trump Republican. The two are very different men.

I am not exactly leaving the party, but I cannot bring myself to vote for Trump. More, I will focus my efforts at the State and Local level where there is at least some true Conservatives left.

Wandering about religion … even when it isn’t called religion.

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I read a blogpost this afternoon about belief, and it got me to thinking. That is usually trouble enough, but what the hey! I push forward anyway.

I am never sure at any given moment where I am in the debate. I drift between agnosticism and belief like a dandelion seed in a May zephyr. I go to prayer at the slightest provocation, but I don’t spend a lot of time with petitions to God. Less and less, I ask for things, and more and more I admit my personal flaws.

Most people today would be surprised at my humiliating background, given my propensity to go off half-cocked with people. I don’t talk about the particulars a lot. Maybe I just got tired of being judged one morning, and started pushing back. I dunno. But I made damned sure that anyone who had something against me went behind my back to say it. I still have some of that chip left on my shoulder, but most of the people I defy to knock it off have the bad result coming to them for their asinine arrogance. But that is another tale for another day.

Oddly, my weaknesses and indignities grew into my strength today, both in my relationships, and my religion. One truly doesn’t know what they believe until that belief is tested. On the outer fringes of theists and atheists is a whole lot of loudmouths who bray like jackasses, revealing the emptiness of their vapid souls to anyone who takes the time to carefully match their words to their life. You can tell their beliefs have never been tested, and more, they will never be until that final day when Charon comes for them, and they don’t even have the cheap coin to pay their way to the other side.

But I usually don’t truck with either of them. I have no time for their ideals nor their politics, and they are usually dispensed with very quickly when they seek to ‘enlighten’ me. Militant fanatics are not the deep thinkers they like to portray themselves as, and their miserable lives and friendships generally prove their poverty of spirit. Whole nations lie devastated by their jingoisms and false intellectualism, and I’ll not be part of it.

It is the mushy middle that drives me crazy. You know the ones. They have withdrawn from the battle before it even began. They are foot-shooting casualties who fantasize about spiritual things than make them feel good, but provide no sustenance for their souls or family. But they are always going on about spiritual things, angelic wings and magic crystals. Ancient runes decorate their homes, yet they comprehend them not. I cannot find it in my heart to even question them, lest I break them. They are the true wounded of untested religion.

Then there are those who actually have stood in the fire, yet were not consumed. You know them because they don’t preach, and they truly don’t judge.  You usually won’t find them at the higher levels of academia, and you don’t find them begging on street corners. The only way you ever find out that they are givers is when you actually see them give. Sometimes they are church goers, but certainly not all of them. Their families are well ordered, and a sense of honor envelopes them.

I don’t think any of them blog, either, so I am not one of them. But I sure want to be.

 

Picking at Scabs

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It happened just as I knew it would. “Rusty?” the words on messenger popped up.

A thousand emotions rose up and subsided in me, and I clasped my hands tightly to keep from responding. It was written on an old inactive account that I had forgotten about, but hadn’t unlinked from.

My mind replayed that time when my two dearest of friend’s feet turned to clay on the very same day, and I was left to founder on my own for two years. It was a very hard lesson that I had thought I learned years ago about friendships and one way streets.

Yeah, I did finally recover, losing two precious years of what should have been some of the best of years. I told none of my online friends or family, and fought that one out alone. Those are the hardest of victories, but the more solid of them. In the end, we all walk that last mile alone, no matter how many are gathered around us, anyway. So too with affaires de coeur.

But there will be no second chances here. Casual chit-chat, maybe. But never again the deep conversations of the soul. Spiritually, I have moved on from those bleak days anyway, and I have no interest in other things than those marked out ahead of me.

So I softly closed the window, deactivated the account, and left the query unanswered.

So why is the wound still bleeding?