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PJMcK

Profile Information

Name: Paul McKibbins
Gender: Male
Hometown: New York City
Home country: USA
Current location: New York City
Member since: Mon Jun 5, 2006, 05:16 PM
Number of posts: 12,148

About Me

Lifelong Democrat

Journal Archives

An encounter with a Trump supporter

Last weekend, I went to a Long Island golf course that I used to belong to. I wanted to donate a set of clubs to their First Tee Program which provides encouragement for underprivileged kids to learn the game. While I was there, I ran into a number of old golfing buddies including a pro with whom I had becomes close friends over the years. He taught my son how to play and he has invited me to play in several Pro-Ams, a couple of which we won.

As we were chatting, he began to make political comments. In itself, this was unusual. There's an unwritten rule of etiquette that the two things you never talk about at the golf course are religion and politics. I chose to say nothing but he went on to praise all of the great accomplishments Trump has brought to the U.S. After a couple of minutes, I asked him where he gets his news information. Unsurprisingly, he said he watches Fox News. His comments illustrated that he was somewhat disconnected from reality. He also went on to praise Trump's golf courses. I played three of his courses before he announced his candidacy: they suck and they're ridiculously expensive.

My response to his comments was three-fold. First, I told him that Fox "News" had admitted in court that they were not a news organization but an entertainment outlet. Second, I told him that he was foolish to vote as if he were in the 1% when he's nowhere near that level of wealth. I reminded him that he could not have afforded his double-knee replacement were he not covered by the ACA, also known as Obamacare, (I wanted to needle him a little). Lastly, I scolded him for violating the unwritten rule of etiquette regarding religion and politics.

He responded by saying he was surprised to learn that I was a liberal! He also apologized for bringing up politics.

I like this man and he's been very generous with his golf talents. But it baffled me to see and hear him spouting such utter bullshit and assume that I would be in complete agreement with him.

It's become increasingly clear to me that there are 40% of Americans who are clueless, stupid and/or evil. As a country, we're in for a rougher ride, I'm afraid.

Hope the teacher has sense of humor

We tried something like that in high school choir. At the end of our holiday concert, all of the performing groups would combine to perform Handel's "Hallelujah Chorus." When the music got near the end when it's really rocking, a group of us thought it would be fun to start clapping on the backbeats, giving the music an almost Gospel/Rock style. The music director was horrified and pissed and several of us were disciplined because of it.

Nearly 40 years later, our infamous stunt is still recalled by some! In the long run, it was worth it but at the time, some of us were chagrined.

Oh, well. We survived. So did Handel's magnificent music.

There are many profoundly ignorant people in the United States

The decades-long assault on education by Republicans has resulted in a great many Americans who are unable to critically assess information and they really have no idea how our governments-- federal, state and local-- are structured and function.

They do not understand the corrupting effects of big money on our politics at all three levels. However, they are furious that they are being left behind because their interests are not being addressed by our elected officials.

We have at least two generations of Americans where far too many are disengaged from our politics.

This is a very dangerous state for our nation.

Gabbard has demonstrated that she doesn't understand Government

Her calls for "transparency" are either ignorant or purposefully misleading. In either case, she's making stupid noises that disqualify her for the presidency or even for the office she current holds.

Gabbard is a member of the House but she clearly doesn't understand the rules and procedures of that body. The process for an Impeachment Inquiry was designed by Republicans led by John Boehner. The depositions and testimonies that the investigative committees are engaged in are supposed to be secret, just as are Grand Jury proceedings, (which this phase of the House's process emulate). In spite of the closed doors, however, the hearings are held before both the Democrats and Republicans who are members of the relevant committees. Both sides participate in the process.

Should the committees determine that Trump committed high crimes and misdemeanors or other acts that warrant impeachment, they will then present their evidence to the full House to debate if Impeachment is the proper course. There's your transparency, Tulsi.

That Gabbard doesn't know this stuff illustrates her unfitness for office. She's been in office for about 7 years and she still hasn't learned how Congress works?!

It's pathetic.

Or it's political in which case I'm baffled why she spouts GOP positions.

Nearly every word out of Trump's mouth is a lie

Thanks to the Washington Post, we have a tally of Trump's lies, misstatements and hooey. He's made over 12,000 untruths since taking office.

That's a truly remarkable achievement for the President of the United States! On the world's stage, who woulds believe or trust him? I don't think I could lie that much if I tried; of course, like most normal people, I have a conscience.

In just three short years that have seemed like an eternity, Trump has diminished our standing, damaged our people, probably shivved our economy and insulted many of our allies while aligning himself with the worst dictators around the globe. And a great many of our fellow citizens are okay with that.

I've loved the U.S.A. my whole life. If this motherfucker can't be removed, I'll have to think about those feelings.

A thought about the whistle-blower

The New York Times is reporting that the whistle-blower is a C.I.A. analyst who was detailed to the White House. He has since returned to the C.I.A.

Trump has repeatedly denigrated the U.S. intelligence agencies and taken the words of foreign dictators over his own professionals. He debased the sacrifices of those honored at the C.I.A.'s Memorial Wall. He has ignored their tireless work and doesn't even read their reports let alone take their advice. Trump has no idea how hard and dangerous intelligence work is.

This must rankle our intelligence professionals. It is a measure of their collective honor and patriotism that until now, none have spoken out against Trump. This analyst waited until there was irrefutable evidence of wrong-doing and then he acted through the legal mechanism established for exactly this type of situation.

To the whistle-blower I say, well done, sir. Your country thanks you.

As a twice-divorced man, may I offer a few observations?

First, lose the ring! In fact, sell it. I stopped wearing my rings as soon as it was clear the relationships were over. These were not acts of "single-hood" but rather acts of freedom. There is no stronger symbol of marriage than a ring. Set yourself free. I sold my wedding bands for 25% of what they cost but so what? They were symbols of the past and of failures and I don't need that in my life. As Jackson Browne wrote in his song "These Days," "Don't confront me with my failures, I have not forgotten them."

Second, I assume Trooper is your dog. You wrote, "Trooper seems to like people." There are lots and lots of other people for Trooper to be friendly with. As another poster wrote, you and your ex split for very good reasons. Try to remember them! Pets remember people who were kind to them but they don't know the complexities of your relationship with the ex. Trust me, there are lots of people for you to have meaningful relationships with, (not even necessarily romantic ones), and Trooper will like them, too.

Third, your ex may be trying to manipulate you by "making some good points." Remember that he knows your soft spots and buttons, just as you (consciously or not) know his. Don't let him put you in a position where you lose your independence: that's why you split in the first place!

Lastly, I strongly admire your desire to remember to not give your heart to anyone who doesn't deserve it. You might get hurt in a new relationship because letting go is part of falling in love. However, you already know how your ex has hurt you. Don't give him that power over you again because he's already proven he's unworthy of your trust.

In closing, I'm a romantic and I got married for the third time several months ago. My new wife has been a friend for 40 years and we were totally surprised when we started falling in love. One big reason we get along so well is that we already know one another's strengths and weaknesses; there weren't many surprises between us. Our mutual goal is to be straight up and honest with one another and that keeps the little things from escalating. As a result, we're having the times of our lives together! There's hope for happiness and I encourage you to be open to new adventures.

Let me get this milestone out of the way

This is my 10,000th post on DU.

Member since 2006, reader since the early 2000's.

I read this site every day. I get much of the news from here and from links on DU. In addition to the political discussions, there are so many forums and groups focused on interesting topics.

I read many posts by many intelligent and articulate members with whom I share the broader progressive and democratic ideals. It's a terrific site that is well-run, well-moderated and mostly very tolerant.

I hope everyone keeps up their energy levels as we approach the most important election in my 61 years.

(Glad that's out of the way!)

It's all made up and it's illogical in the extreme

The Bible says that God is omniscient, that is, God knows everything.

Oh, yeah? Then why didn't God know that Adam and Eve would eat the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge? Why didn't God know that, even though He wiped out almost all of humanity in the Flood, Noah and his descendants would continue as sinners? The simplest answer is that God is not all-knowing and the Biblical evidence suggests a creator who is just making things up on the fly.

The Bible says that God is omnipotent. that is, God is all-powerful with unlimited abilities.

Oh, yeah? Then why does God allow all kinds of disasters to strike the people He claims to love? Why do so many children suffer? Doesn't Jesus "love the little children?" The simplest answer is that God doesn't interact with humans on a daily basis and that He is powerless to protect His own creations from disaster.

The Bible says that God is omnipresent, that is, God is everywhere all the time.

Oh, yeah? Then why are there so many different faiths? Like the article and video indicate, why isn't God's message automatically implanted in our DNA? The simple answer is that God isn't everywhere.

Even more simply, perhaps there is no God. There doesn't seem to be any hard evidence of God's existence. There's a trope that says that the human eye is so complex that it proves God created us. And yet, the human eye is actually fairly limited in its abilities as it can only perceive a very narrow range of the electro-magnetic spectrum. Also, why do so many people need glasses if the eye is so special?

These are but a smattering of the problems with this belief in a supernatural creator. Broadly, there are conflicting views of what the Bible represents. To some, it's all literal and factual. To some, the Old Testament is metaphorical and the New Testament is literal. And to others, both books are allegories. So which is right?

By the way, this is only one branch of human religions. What about all of the people in the world who hold different faiths? How did that occur? Why are they to be condemned for eternity? Or are their beliefs correct and Christianity is wrong?

It's all so silly and sick at the same time.

Dejeuner a Marseilles

Since I was a kid, I’ve wanted an authentic bouillabaisse. There was a comedy spy movie in the 1960s that starred James Coburn called “Our Man Flint.” In the film, there was a small sub-plot where super-spy Derek Flint goes to a number of different restaurants in Marseilles looking for a specific bouillabaisse in his search for a killer. I thought the word was funny but when I found out what it was, I wanted to try it even though I was just a kid. As we enjoyed our voyage de noces in Arles, France last week, we made the one hour drive to Marseilles, the home of bouillabaisse.

We found Restaurant Michael opposite la plage and our table had a magnificent view of the Mediterranean. The proprietor presented a selection of beautiful fresh fish that were then sent to the kitchen. Our choices were European hake, rascasse and monkfish, I think. Even though it was lunchtime, we ordered a bottle of a local white wine that proved to be an excellent accompaniment to the meal.

The fish-based broth itself was served steaming hot in a large tureen and the waiter ladled it into the individual bowls. It was a thick reddish-brown tomato-looking broth with an alluring scent of garlic, saffron and other herbs and spices. The cooked fish arrived from the kitchen and were expertly filleted by the waiter who put on quite a show as he divided the slices of fish onto two plates that also had slices of marinated potatoes on them. A large basket of fresh breads and toasts was on the table along with two sauces: a garlicky mayonnaise and a spicy, thick olive oil mayonnaise.

I was surprised that the fish was not in the broth. Instead, we were expected to cut a piece of fish, submerse it in the broth and eat it using a soup spoon with a dollop of one of the sauces along with a piece of bread. This is to keep the fish from becoming too soft and fragile. It was even more surprising that there weren’t any shellfish or other sea foods in the dish. The proprietor explained that including those meats is another dish entirely. Whatever. This dish was spectacular!

For dessert we had cappuccinos and a small creamed-filled pastry drowning in melted chocolate.

It was a once-in-a-lifetime experience and the Landlady(!) is now determined to try recreating it. However, it was a monstrously expensive lunch! Fortunately, we had been forewarned. It was a meal that I’ll never forget.

P.S. Sorry this isn’t tonight’s dinner but I wanted to share the tale! We’re roasting a chicken and have wild rice and broccoli for the sides. Back to work tomorrow.
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