Demonizing Hillary

My wife has enormous influence on me. I listen to whatever she says, and am often convinced to change my view, at least slightly, because of something she said. On the twentieth anniversary of our marriage (today, August 3rd, 2016), it is, therefore, appropriate to write a brief note about a recent change in my thinking about the 2016 elections.

This change is a good one; good in the sense that it lets me live my life feeling less disgust for other people. That makes me happy, because feeling disgust for anything is not pleasant in any way. So what changed? My view of Trump voters.

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A delayed response (at least here)

Eugene Slaven wrote a piece at the American Thinker that set me off, big time. I ranted about it on Facebook  a few days ago, and intended to cross-post it here, but never got around to it. Better late than never.

The piece, “Since when does the American left believe America is great?” incited this rant from me, that, in hindsight, wasn’t even harsh enough.

This. This is the kind of shit that makes me so angry. Rush Limbaugh and his kin like to talk about angry liberals…if he’s talking about people like me, we’re only angry because of bullshit like this.

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Debating the Obama presidency before it even ended

A friend posted this on FaceBook the other day. It’s a blog post written about a challenge that was made to republicans to “Name any meaningful metric that got worse under President Obama.” The post is very detailed and long, and I’m actually a bit jealous that I didn’t write it first. Either way, this friend, the one who posted it on FaceBook, tagged one of his conservative friends to respond. He did it in a nice way, non-confrontational.

Scott, genuinely interested in your response to this. Not posting this as a provocation – I would really like to hear an informed rebuttal from a smart conservative person who plays fair, which you do.

But please limit your response to 20 or 30,000 words. Don’t want feel like I’ve burdened you with homework on 4th of July weekend.

I like that. Scott responded, and I wanted so badly to respond to his comment, but I don’t know the original poster all that well (the “friend” on FaceBook is really the husband of one of my wife’s high school friends who I’ve known for a while, but she doesn’t fall into the list-of-people-I’d-invite-to-my-birthday-party circle, and neither does her husband. For that reason, and because he specifically said he wasn’t trying to provoke, I resisted the temptation to post…and just relieved myself here. So here’s Scott’s response, and what I so badly wanted to say to him after.

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The world is going to hell…um, not really

When I talk to people who support a candidate like Donald Trump, they seem almost completely driven by this crippling fear that the world is on fire, that the United States is falling apart, and that Washington is either helping this happen, or not effectively doing anything about it. I have to say that if I believed all of that was true, I could imagine the appeal of a candidate like Donald Trump. The problem is this: almost none of the fears that these people have are rooted in reality. Let’s take a bit to look at some things that might frighten us.

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What you should know about me

Here’s an important backdrop for pretty much anything I can imagine posting here: I am undoubtedly an emotional person. I get choked up watching movies all the time, and sometimes I get so frustrated that I want to scream. My hope is always to put this aside when I discuss an issue. I think this has been a problem on FaceBook in the past, because people see my arguments as emotional, and place emotion that they imagine on them, when the intent is to be an emotional void. It’s not that I don’t like emotions, it’s not that I think they’re bad. It’s simply that I think our decision-making process is not always the best when we throw emotions into the picture. Some might say that it’s impossible to remove them, because we are, indeed, emotional beings, but I try hard to separate them nevertheless. I tried to explain this to my lovely wife last night, and her first response was to laugh out loud and call me crazy, but after a bit of explaining, I think I won her over, and convinced her that even though I get emotional, I try to keep that out of these decisions/discussions/debates.

Continue reading “What you should know about me”