In this sixth monthly blogpost on the pandemic, Russian Interference, theology, the behavior of lemmings, President's Trump's take on American History, SCOTUS, the appointment of Amy Coney Barrett, the election, and the global surge of COVID-19 cases are among the topics discussed. Read slow!
Donald Trump and the Republican Party have made white supremacy their core issue in the campaign, and the President threatens to stay in office even if he loses. He's made himself a threat to democracy. In the meantime, the COVID-19 pandemic spreads unabated. There is no national plan to confront it. How could this be happening?
Preface This is the second of three reflections on the coronavirus pandemic. The first, published a month ago, was named Pandemic Ramble. This one, more wistful, is named Pandemic Shamble. It addresses also the pandemic of racism. Since the future may be messy and confusing, I’ve tentatively chosen the name of Pandemic Scramble for the... Continue Reading →
Introduction I’ve begun attending monthly meetings of Socrates Café at the South Portland Library. Socrates Café is a gathering of citizens who get together by choice to discuss the big questions of life. Methods drawn from the book, Socrates Café, written by the program’s founder, Christopher Phillips, are used to guide discussion. The example of... Continue Reading →
Introduction In a dramatic display of family fealty and mathematical incompetence, a trailer load of daughter Catherine’s belongings took control of our Jeep as Bev and I were transporting her stuff back to Maine from Pittsburgh. This was in the winter of 1991. Catherine was on her way to Brazil. We had just left the... Continue Reading →
In a quiet professional manner, the psychiatrist bent slightly toward the patient reclined before him and asked the difficult question that promised insight into the man's character and many problems. Would you be willing to reflect on the interesting surmise my secretary has formed as to the source of your maladies? I will, certainly, what... Continue Reading →
Introduction The outcome of the 2016 Presidential election still rankles and puzzles. How did Donald J. Trump get elected? How could anyone vote for him? How could that many people vote for him, the sixty-two or so million people who actually did? I don’t know the answer. Perhaps no one does. Because the times are... Continue Reading →
Background Stanley Cavell, the American philosopher and Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at Harvard University, died recently at the age of 91. Coming to philosophy by way of music and film, he authored a diverse assortment of philosophical texts including The Claim of Reason, Must We Mean What We Say?, Pursuits of Happiness: The Hollywood Comedy of... Continue Reading →
I chose this title from among others because something perverse, charming, and strange seemed to be going on in these pleasant interludes with Tim Harrell, and I couldn't figure out what that was, and so, I gave up and went with the vanilla option! ‘Tim the Voyeur’ was enticing, but slanderous. ‘Spying' or ‘Surveilling with... Continue Reading →
In Ben Taub’s report, The Spy Who Came Home, published in the May 7, 2018 issue of The New Yorker, subtitled Why an expert in counterterrorism became a beat cop, the story is told of Patrick Skinner—a seasoned CIA counterterrorist expert, with extensive experience in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Jordan—who gives it all up in favor of a... Continue Reading →