Barb Caffrey's Blog

Writing the Elfyverse . . . and beyond

Six Things for Saturday

with 33 comments

Folks, I know I didn’t write a blog all week, and I’m sorry. So without further ado, here are six takes on six different things. (Why six? It’s Saturday. I like alliteration. It makes sense in my head, anyway…)

  • I’m very happy that my favorite baseball team, the Milwaukee Brewers, are in the playoffs. They haven’t had a team this good since 1982, and that year, the Brewers (in the American League back then) made it to the World Series. I don’t know if this year’s team can do that or not; much remains unclear at this time. But they have had a great year, and their bullpen is the main reason, along with the play of MVP-candidate Christian Yelich.
  • I’ve thought a lot about editing this past week. Some books that I’ve otherwise loved end up with odd errors in them. One such error is “fairing” instead of the proper word, faring, as in, “How are you faring?” (Meaning, how are you doing.) I don’t know why this keeps showing up in books, except that I’m guessing the authors either didn’t have good editors or they relied too much on spellcheck and/or grammar check. (No spellcheck or grammar check in the world is as good as a real, live editor.)
  • I am far from indifferent to the political situation we have going on in the US right now. I am frustrated with the descent into tribalism. We cannot get any traction if those of us in the middle are either vilified or ignored. And yet, if you try to take a middle stance on anything, that’s exactly what happens. As I’ve said before, change usually is incremental. (Mind, it may show up, all of a sudden, as a huge one, such as when same-sex marriage was legalized in all 50 states in 2015. But it took decades of progress to get to that point.) And to get that incremental change, you need people who are willing to look at the problems — take a good, hard, rational, fact-based look — and then compromise to get the best solution possible.

Now, is this hard to do? Damn straight it is. Most people do not have the wherewithal to truly serve the public rather than themselves, or worse, special interests/big moneyed interests. Maybe they want to serve the public, but can’t figure out a way; maybe they get to state capitals (or even more challenging, Washington, DC) and get blinded by the “bright lights, big city” phenomenon.

But this is what must happen to have good, positive public service. And right now, because no one trusts anyone else politically and there’s very little bipartisanship to be had at any level, those of us who just want to fix the potholes and make sensible public policy get pushed to the side. And that’s wrong.

  • Someone asked me if I believed Doctor Christine Blasey Ford’s testimony. The answer is that I did. Something definitely happened to her, and she was definitely sexually assaulted. Her behavior afterward is characteristic of that, as is the fact it took her years to put herself back together. So yes, I believed her. And yes, I believe we need to listen to sexual assault survivors, and make better public policy overall if we can in that regard, too.

(Before someone says, “But Barb! That doesn’t say Judge Kavanaugh did anything! You have no proof! She has no proof either beyond her bare word,” I will point out that I am answering only the one question. I wait for facts.)

I am very pleased Doctor Ford put herself back together, mind, and used her experiences to better inform her life, make better and more positive choices in the long run, and get her doctorate (which is a very big deal). That’s hard to do. She did it. She deserves credit for it.

And the people who are angry with her for telling her story need to show some compassion. Even if they think she’s flat wrong, they should be praying for her; they shouldn’t be doxxing her or sending death threats. (That should go without saying, but somehow, it no longer does.)

  • Weather is the last bastion of bipartisanship in the United States.

Weather is a great equalizer, you know. We all face it. We all have to deal with it. We all have to learn to live with it. And we all have to figure out ways to cope with it.

In my area in Southeastern Wisconsin, we’ve had lots of rain lately, with some of it overflowing the banks of the various rivers. That is never good. (We also are getting more rain and the ground is super-saturated already. Also not good.)

So, weather is still bipartisan, and is still a safe subject. (Hallelujah?)

  • Sixth and last, if I’ve learned anything from this life, it’s that I can’t change anyone else. I can only change me. (And that happens very, very slowly.)

Why am I talking about this? Recent events in my personal life, mostly. I have had to face the fact that no matter what I want, certain folks just aren’t going to change. I have to deal with the problem as it is (or as a golfer would say, “Play the ball as it lies”); I can’t prettify it up or hope for better.

Now, this can be depressing, if you take it one way. But it also can be liberating.

See, if you’ve done everything in your power, and nothing has affected the outcome, that just shows you’re in the wrong place. Or maybe with the wrong people.

So, going forward, I will keep working on myself, and my craft, and my art. And if I can find like-minded souls willing to walk with me on the journey, good.

If not? Well, I’m going to have to stop bending myself into pretzel-shapes, and save steps.

Any comments from the peanut gallery? (Preferably not about politics?) Let me know in the comments!

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33 Responses

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  1. “Wait For The Facts” is really hard to do when people (especially those who already hate the accused) are telling us that the accused is an Evil Monster.

    It’s especially annoying when the only facts are one person’s words and that person doesn’t provide anything that can be checked. IE “Where and when was the party”. An honest prosecutor would want that knowledge so he can show the jury that the accused (and the accuser) were “at the same place and time”.

    Oh, I completely dislike the theme of “but it was a job interview not a criminal trial” especially when the some of the “interviewers” and the News Media are attempting to destroy a person’s reputation. IE They are doing more than “deciding if he should be hired” (of course, the Democratic Senators were on record as saying that they’d vote against him).

    Oh, I’m not going to get further into “why she may be lying”.

    Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

    October 6, 2018 at 10:02 am

    • Paul, I appreciate seeing your comments. You don’t have to agree with me.

      I don’t know what happened in 1982 either. I can only tell you that she definitely was assaulted by someone. She has all the signs of it and you can’t make those signs up. It doesn’t say Judge Kavanaugh was the one to admit she has all the signs of being assaulted by someone.

      What do you think of the rest of it?

      Barb Caffrey

      October 7, 2018 at 12:30 am

  2. By the way, I reread your post and just noticed the “hopefully not about politics”.

    I apologize for “blowing off steam on politics”. I’ve been hearing too much about that subject even when I’m trying to avoid it.

    Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

    October 6, 2018 at 11:19 am

    • You’re forgiven. I know where you’re coming from. (For the rest of you, Paul lives in a very left-wing community. Very, very left-wing, if I remember correctly. And he feels completely isolated as a conservative there.)

      Barb Caffrey

      October 7, 2018 at 12:31 am

  3. I am with you all the way Barb on all the points you have raised.
    Not to worry about not writing a blog every week, sometimes the times just fly past, I’ve lost track of when was the last time I wrote in either blog. There’s book to write and there are blogs to read, also chores to be done. Hey-ho where does the time go?

    I am glad your team is doing well. We follow a soccer team Aston Villa who were once giants but in recent years have developed the knack of snatching defeat out of the jaws of certain victory. (Oh woe!)

    It is a sad circumstance when a nation descends into tribalism, we have suffered the same fate here in the UK over the infamous Brexit. If someone was for one side and you are for the other it is difficult to remain civil….though with one friend we have managed to admit the flaws in the basic arguments and generally agree on the deplorable racist element which has figured. The tribalism elements cannot help. We suffered this during the Thatcher era; either for her or against her and the nation suffered.
    If there is no consensus then both nations will decline. Regrettably you have a person in the Whitehouse who has no dignity or sense of consensus and we have one Boris Johnson waiting in our wings whose is a similar vain, self-aggrandising person of small worth.

    Which leads me to Kavanaugh. The placement of folk on Supreme Court of the USA has been redolent with political overtones for many a year. FDR tried to pack the Court and even he fell foul. Normally scandal would be a decider however as this fellow is a conservative and there is an element on the right who yearn to overturn Roe vs Wade then it seems whereas Kavanaugh is a person of questionable character who will not come clean about his mistakes and a whining self-pitying sort, he is THEIR person of questionable character who will not come clean about his mistakes and a whining self-pitying sort!
    Naturally as many women before her Doctor Ford has come under attack, both vile and personal. Big surprise. That’s a centuries old trick. Why do I think she is telling the truth…Simple anyone who has suffered this sort of trauma takes a long while to come back and being a woman knows full well the type of ignorant abuse she would suffer….. Including from a person who is supposed to be a president (though long since lost the moral right to that office).
    In short if Trump supports this man, then the case against him is at least plausible (and that is being very, very generous).

    I am very sorry for the ordinary folk of the USA, the 2/3rd of your nation who do not support this freak of the voting system and those who follow him come High Water, or Hell.

    Take care Barb
    All the best Roger

    Woebegone but Hopeful

    October 6, 2018 at 11:30 am

    • I laugh at your comments about Trump. He just “gives back” what Democrats have thrown at Republicans Presidents for years. To me, such comments (from Liberal Americans) are “He’s a Meany, He Hits Back After We Hit Him”. The “comments” that the President must be “President of Everybody” fall very short when the Democrats/Liberals had made it clear that “Trump Wasn’t Their President” and attempted to “overturn” the election.

      As for “Kavanaugh is a person of questionable character”, too many people who actually know the man would say differently. For that matter, an intelligent person would wonder “if he’s a sexual predator, why haven’t there been more recent rumors/reports of rape”. You are saying that one report over thirty-five years old makes him a “person of questionable character”.

      As for “Roe vs Wade”, even if it was over-turned (which is unlikely), legal abortion would very likely remain. You’ve been listening to idiots of our National News Media.

      Finally, I just “love” how “guilt by association” is the thing for “reasonable people”. People who hate Trump blindly assume that his choice for the Supreme Court is a Monster.

      Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

      October 6, 2018 at 11:58 am

      • I do not intend to discuss this with you on Barb’s blog. I do not feel it is fair on her.
        If you should wish to take this further then I would suggest you seek out ‘Raging From The Lectern’ which is my political blog where I will feel less constrained.
        This is all I have to say to you on Barb’s blog.

        Woebegone but Hopeful

        October 6, 2018 at 12:42 pm

      • Thank you, Roger.

        The comment I was trying to make was a narrow one. I don’t know what happened in 1982. I do know Doctor Ford was definitely abused by someone. She has all the hallmarks of it. She has dealt with a lot of pain and tragedy and stress. I think her motives for saying this happened to her were as pure as we get on this Earth. The only question is, are there any witnesses who remember what happened back in 1982 who can corroborate her story?

        And I didn’t even want to go there, because to me that is irrelevant. A good woman has been vilified in this case. I don’t agree with that. Even if she’s wrong about who did it, her pain remains, and her reasons remain her own.

        If Judge Kavanaugh did nothing back then other than drink to excess, then that’s fine. (I don’t like drinking to excess either, but lots of people do it and it doesn’t stop them from growing up and becoming better people later.)

        Should he have been tried in the media? No. Should she have been tried in the media? No.

        This all should’ve been properly taken care of by the Senate Judiciary Committee in another fashion. Now, you have a man who honestly doesn’t remember much from 1982 (I believe that much) whose personal reputation has been dragged through the mud, and his family will suffer. And you have a woman who suffered for years having the courage to come forward, being told she was courageous to come forward (which she was), that her testimony was credible (which it was)…and then ignored.

        A setback for human rights, this was. All the way around.

        I don’t need to be political to say _that_.

        Judge Kavanaugh is going to go to SCOTUS and we have to hope that the better angels of his nature prevail. That worries me, but it’s all I can do at this point.

        Barb Caffrey

        October 7, 2018 at 12:41 am

      • It is the violent character assassination and the knee-jerk reactions to support which are the most telling Barb.
        We see a nation splitting, in much the same way as the UK over Brexit. History warns, but very few listen. Consensus is long gone. Passions rule.
        Trump is more likely to be placed along with Millard Fillmore than make the USA ‘great’.
        The UK will experience decline. Either to fragment into the separate nations, or become backwater. As have many nations before.
        History teaches. Very few listen.

        Woebegone but Hopeful

        October 7, 2018 at 2:34 am

      • Yes. I am very concerned and I don’t like this at all. As I have been saying for a while, if you are moderate, you are getting it from all sides, ’cause you aren’t into tribalism. And they wonder why you’re not.

        Barb Caffrey

        October 8, 2018 at 1:07 am

      • Quite I’ve attacked on Left-Wing UK social media sites, for not following their latest fashionable trends…You’ll find as much ignorance and blind hatred there as on any Alt Right site. (And actually my political view are far more traditionally left than theirs only I can see the irony, the flaws and the humour in some of the stuff…not the puritans though)

        Woebegone but Hopeful

        October 8, 2018 at 1:59 am

      • Yeah. There’s a lot of ignorance out there. Left, right, even centrist ignorance…I probably have my fair share of it, too, being but a flawed human as I am.

        I just try to learn from others, that’s all. I hope others can learn from me, even when they profoundly disagree. And I hope one day, we can all somehow rise above this and find out what we have in common…half of the problems in this world, it seems to me, come from lack of communication. (The other half comes from lack of trust.)

        Barb Caffrey

        October 8, 2018 at 2:15 am

      • Very, very true Barb. Communication and Trust.
        From the outside it seems that both Right , Left and Liberals in the USA have exactly the same hopes, fears and intentions. Yet those who would be in authority are too vain and blinkered to see uniting the nation is the paramount issue.
        We, us ‘small’ folk must strive on as best we can to stem the hate and the ignorance, raise the warning bells, and hope

        Woebegone but Hopeful

        October 9, 2018 at 2:23 am

      • Absolutely, Roger.

        Sorry about the delay in answering. I was told I have pneumonia yesterday after several days of feeling just dreadful…so I get to rest, recover, drink tons of liquids, and try to sleep (which I’m not good at, at the best of times, which these definitely aren’t).

        Hope you are doing well on your end, health-wise and otherwise. 🙂

        Barb Caffrey

        October 13, 2018 at 12:33 pm

      • Take Care.

        Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

        October 13, 2018 at 12:36 pm

      • I’ll give it my best shot, Paul. 🙂 You do the same.

        Barb Caffrey

        October 14, 2018 at 4:36 pm

      • 😀

        Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

        October 14, 2018 at 4:48 pm

      • No need to apologise Barb. Flus and Pneumonias lay everyone low.
        You must take care of yourself. So rest up and drink lots and if sleep does evade you sit up and watch something fairly pacific on TV…dozing is good too.
        💐 🌷🌺 🌸 🌼 🌻
        Best wishes
        Roger

        Woebegone but Hopeful

        October 14, 2018 at 2:49 am

      • Thanks, Roger. I will keep doing my best. 🙂

        Barb Caffrey

        October 14, 2018 at 4:36 pm

      • Yes. Rest up, it’s the only way.
        Take care
        Barb

        Woebegone but Hopeful

        October 15, 2018 at 3:07 am

      • Paul, I don’t want to discuss this right now, as I was talking about Dr. Ford being a sexual assault survivor. I think there’s no question she was, and is. The question is, did Judge Kavanaugh do anything, and if he did, does he remember it?

        These are questions that are unlikely to be answered. He’s going to SCOTUS, and my hope is he’ll somehow rise above petty partisanship and do a good job. But some of what he said in his second hearing was very discouraging and disquieting; that worries me a lot, as judges are supposed to be as nonpartisan as possible. They are the last bastion of nonpartisanship in this country, and when judges fail in that duty, we all suffer. (I hope we can agree on that, at least, because there have been other judges that have done wrong over the years — not a lot, but some, and on various sides of the issues — and they’ve caused irreparable harm. 😦

        Barb Caffrey

        October 7, 2018 at 12:37 am

    • Thank you, Roger. I understand completely, and I thank you.

      As for your team, I’m sorry about that. My Brewers have had many horrible years and I’ve suffered through many of those “snatching defeat out of the jaws of victory” losses. They are hard to deal with, as a fan. You wonder sometimes how the players handle it; unless you’re a bunch of lovable losers like the 1962 Mets (the fans called ’em “dem bums” in a different way than they used to call the old Brooklyn Dodgers), it has to be harmful to lose and lose and lose again even when you’re making your absolute best efforts. And the good players on the team — there always are a few — have to wonder what quirk of fate put them on _this_ team, anyway?

      Barb Caffrey

      October 7, 2018 at 12:34 am

      • Who knows Barb?
        There was a ex-soccer player and later commentator who used to say when an odd result turned up ‘It’s a funny ol’ game’.
        I guess that applies to all sports.
        But us fans live in hope, don’t we?…Next week will be different, the corner will be turned…..sigh! 🙄

        Woebegone but Hopeful

        October 7, 2018 at 2:30 am

      • Yep. We all live in hope, that’s for sure! 😀

        Barb Caffrey

        October 8, 2018 at 1:07 am

  4. First and foremost, I strongly distrust “recovered memories”. There have been plenty of cases where the “recovered memories” were completely false (ie the facts contradict the memories) but the person really believes them.

    Second, there have been women who strongly believe that Ford is a liar. IE Her body language doesn’t match her story.

    Third, there have been reports that her story (concerning how she recovered the memories) doesn’t match the facts. For that matter, her claim that “she’s afraid of flying” doesn’t match the fact that she has flown plenty of times (especially going on vacation).

    Fourth, there have been other reports that the Democratic Party has interfered in the process (including her lawyers paid by the Democratic Party not telling Ford important facts and attempts to “influence” witnesses).

    Fifth, I don’t live in a highly leftish community. I live in an area of Illinois that voted for Trump. Of course, living in Illinois I see the shit that goes on in Chicago. If that’s what Democratic Party control means, I don’t want Democrats to control the US.

    Sixth, you talk about “being raped”. Well, I lived through being bullied which lasted from grade-school thru high-school. I don’t remember much about that time but it left me with a bad temper and a hatred for bullying.

    Seventh, I see the Left and too many Liberals as nothing more than bullies.

    Eighth, I saw the Democrats of the committee attempting to destroy Judge Kavanaugh even before this “he’s a rapist” nonsense started.

    Ninth, the News Media joined in the attempt to destroy Judge Kavanaugh’s reputation and Liberal Idiots believed it (or claimed to believe it).

    Tenth, Trump is no angel but I voted for him mainly because I strongly dislike Hillary Clinton (a highly corrupt person) and the Democratic Party. To be blunt, he has shown me that he’s much better than the Democrats.

    Eleventh, anybody who “dislikes” Judge Kavanaugh because Trump nominated him is not somebody that I think highly of.

    Twelveth, I strongly dislike anybody who “whines about the tribalism of the US” but repeats the garbage of the “enemy tribe”.

    Finally Barb, I don’t care if you block me. Have a nice day.

    Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

    October 7, 2018 at 9:32 am

    • Good for you, Drak!

      And Barb, you should know better than to try to Bulverize someone like that. Even if kindly meant, it’s still an attempt to silence him, and diminish his views.

      Jasini

      October 7, 2018 at 10:55 am

      • Thank you.

        Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

        October 7, 2018 at 2:31 pm

      • Not trying to do that, Betsy. Thought you knew me better than that.

        Barb Caffrey

        October 8, 2018 at 1:08 am

    • Why would you think I’d block you, Paul? I haven’t before.

      My view is just that: my view.

      The only thing that hits my hot button is the assumption that I, personally, don’t know what rape is. I do. And it’s awful.

      I think Dr. Ford had something happen to her. But I don’t know if now-Justice Kavanaugh was part of that. I only know what I see now.

      I am not part of a “vast left-wing conspiracy.” I never have been. I am a moderate in a purple state and while there are some things I highly dislike about my own Wisconsin crop of Republicans, there are a few decent ones in the mix (I admit to that, too). I even vote for a few, usually at the local level, because I know them and know what they’re likely to do. (I am more concerned about person over party, principle over party, so tribalism is a real problem.)

      I dislike the characterization of “whining.” That’s ridiculous. Either say you don’t like what I’m saying, and why, or don’t. But don’t come up with something like that.

      I like debate because I think it’s strengthens the mind. I also think it is important to realize that there are more viewpoints out there than my own.

      At any rate, you live in the Chicago media market, for better or worse. I used to watch the news there all the time with my grandma, when I was very young, and I remember what that was like. What you see there, and the corruption you have seen there, is not characteristic of all parts of the country. There are good people in every party on the face of this Earth; there also are bad people in every party on the face of this Earth. (This is very highly simplistic, but I’m doing the best I can.)

      I think John McCain was right when he said that country trumps party. (No pun intended.)

      What bothers me over the whole l’affaire SCOTUS is the way everything — and I do mean everything — was played out in the media. I would much rather this had happened behind closed doors in the Senate Judiciary Committee, and months ago. You aren’t the only one who thinks the media circus was wrong, and you aren’t the only one who despises its effects.

      How can we get to the truth if everything is hyper-partisan all the time, though? If we can’t even agree on what the facts are?

      How we see the facts may differ, of course, but shouldn’t we at least agree on what they are? Here, the facts were, Georgetown Prep, where then-teenage Brett Kavanaugh went to school, was a big-time party school. They got drunk a lot there, as many did in 1982. They drank to excess, as many did in 1982. Athletes, of whom teenage Kavanaugh was one, often thought that they could have any woman they wanted — this is not a big surprise. And they probably weren’t all that subtle about what they wanted.

      These things are all true.

      Now, whether or not Kavanaugh himself that day was stumbling drunk _is_ in question. But did he drink to excess many times? Yes, he certainly did.

      Why then-teenage Christine Blasey didn’t tell her parents anything? She was fifteen. Way underage at a drinking party. Don’t you remember fifteen at all, Paul? Don’t you remember doing something your parents didn’t want, that you knew you shouldn’t do, but were going to go do anyway?

      And she came out of there traumatized. I don’t think that’s in doubt either.

      The question is, who did it? We don’t know.

      What I think people should remember about this are two things: Fifteen, and high-school drinking culture. That’s what you need to think about, and that’s why I said it’s important to listen to her even if you disagree with her belief that it’s then-teenage Kavanaugh who did this.

      We have a lot to learn from Doctor Blasey Ford, good and bad. That’s why I said that I wished people would pray for her rather than send her death threats or put all her info online.

      As for the rest…Paul, you need to realize that I don’t dislike all Trump supporters. I don’t like the President, I don’t like a lot of what he’s done, but my argument against then-Judge and now-Justice Kavanaugh was because of the rigidity of his thinking in judicial arguments. I’ve read them. He’s a pretty black and white thinker.

      I am consistent about what I say.

      I just have a lot more compassion in my heart for someone who’s obviously been abused than you do. And I am sorry for that, because I hope I’d say the same thing if, say, KellyAnne Conway had come out and told _her_ story in the media. (I respect her, even though I don’t agree with her. And she’s said she was abused. If she told all the salient details and it slowed down a fast-track political appointment but didn’t stop it, I would hope to God/dess that she was more kindly treated than Doctor Ford.)

      Barb Caffrey

      October 8, 2018 at 1:21 am

      • “Obviously Abused”?

        That’s the question. I’ve heard from women that say she wasn’t obviously abused.

        Does being a rape victim (note I’m not saying that you weren’t) make you an expert on truth-telling? IE you have a “special sense” that tells you that a woman claiming abuse is telling the truth.

        Any intelligent Lawyer, male or female, would not want you on a jury judging a man accused of rape because you might ignore the evidence against the charge being true.

        I’m going to be Blunt. Recovered Memories can be False. We have no evidence that Ford and Kavanaugh were at the same party.

        To be blunt, when I heard the first reports I suspected “False Memories” not that she was a Liar.

        I heard other reports that showed major problems in her story and it was obvious based on early actions by the Democrats that it didn’t matter to them if she was telling the truth or not.

        Justice Depends on Facts not Feelings or who tells the “best story”.

        It is not relevant that High School students go to wild parties.

        It is relevant if you could show that Ford and Kavanaugh were at the same party and could show that he was drunk out of his mind. Nobody has shown that they were at the same party.

        Of course, there have been plenty of Real Life cases where the raped woman was mistaken about how raped her.

        There have been plenty of Real Life cases where the woman hadn’t been raped but falsely accused men of raping her.

        In both types of cases, the woman could “give a good story” but the facts would tell another story, the Truth.

        Finally Barb, you have made it clear that it doesn’t really matter “what are the facts” and have been ignoring what I say or other say that contradict your “feelings”.

        Intelligent people doubt their own feelings and look for the facts.

        A Raped Woman doesn’t have “Superior Insight” into the Truth.

        The Democratic Party may be slandering an innocent man for political reasons and the News Media has done the same.

        The fact that this wasn’t a Criminal Trial isn’t relevant.

        Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

        October 8, 2018 at 8:46 am

      • You may be right that Brett Kavanaugh has been slandered. This process was all wrong from the get-go. I don’t know why things weren’t handled behind closed doors months ago. That would’ve been much better and far more preferable.

        As far as the rest of it…Paul, I can’t tell you that I have a sixth sense for anything. I can only tell you what I know myself, as far as what I’ve observed, myself. I’ve also read THE COURAGE TO HEAL book and workbook (they are two things, and they go together); that may help, if you ever want to read it, give you the idea as to how difficult the process is to heal from such a traumatic event is.

        I agree with you that so far, we don’t have anyone who can corroborate Dr. Ford’s story on the day in question. The only corroboration we have is regarding how much drinking then-teenage Brett Kavanaugh did back then. I wish he’d have said, “Yes, I did a lot of stuff then, including drinking way to excess, that I wish I’d not have done. I don’t want my daughters to do this, and I would hope I’ve learned something over the years. I try not to make the same mistake twice.”

        That, to my mind, would’ve been more believable, but again, we’re at a pass we shouldn’t have been in _anyway_ as this all should’ve happened months ago, behind closed doors, not ripping the country apart like this.

        Yes, intelligent people must look for the facts.

        I don’t know the facts here. Neither do you. That’s what I’ve tried to say.

        The middle way I have presented doesn’t go over well, I see. It’s frustrating, to be sure, that you can’t state what you see to be true — knowing full well my opinion is just that, and not a full set of facts — if you aren’t adhering to anyone else’s set of viewpoints.

        I don’t know why you feel like I’m not listening to you, Paul. I am. I may not agree with everything you say. I know sure as Hell you don’t agree with much of anything I’ve had to say. But I’m still listening, because that’s the only way I know.

        There’s a visceral nature to all of this that bothers me. The folks who stirred this all up — and I honestly don’t think Dr. Ford was one of those, as she could’ve gone public back in June if she’d wanted (she didn’t) — didn’t care about anything except sensationalism. They didn’t care how they’d rip the country apart. They didn’t care about the raw, open wounds that many feel who’ve been raped (men and women alike); they didn’t care about how men who maybe were accused of things they didn’t do would feel about it. They didn’t care either about how people would feel about the idea that whatever you were at your lowest point, you could never rise above; that’s the absolute worst thing about this, I think.

        I believe in redemption. I believe in honesty, fair dealing, and do not believe in media circuses. I think it’s far more important to get the facts than anything, but I don’t know that the facts are in evidence here.

        The only thing I have left to go on, then, are my feelings, and those aren’t as strong as facts.

        But what I do know, as a fact, is that folks I know well, who are otherwise good people, disagree with me. That’s fine, but basically getting angry with me for having a different opinion than yours is really not kosher. Saying that here’s why you don’t agree is fine. Saying I don’t have the right, on my blog, to say what I feel I need to say isn’t fine.

        And while you haven’t actually come out and said that, you have said you don’t think I know what I’m talking about. I do know what I’m talking about with regards to my feelings (which aren’t as good by far as facts) and as regards to the “subject matter expertise” I bring to the table.

        Again, I do not expect you to believe as I do. And no matter what we believe on this, the two families — Dr. Ford’s, and Judge-now-Justice Kavanaugh’s, have been irreparably harmed. I don’t like that _at all_. And I don’t like it that to get ratings, or whatever, we’ve come to a point where otherwise rational people cannot agree to disagree, friendships get ruined, and people start throwing others under the bus out of some mistaken feeling that everyone must adhere to the same political and social orthodoxy.

        I can only tell you what I’ve said before. I am repeating myself. I am saddened, though, by all of this. And I am frustrated beyond belief that we have gotten to a point in this country, and in this world, where we can’t agree to disagree anymore on things that really — if you think about it hard enough — don’t concern us very much. (SCOTUS does. Who sits on it does. But stuff like this should’ve been done in the vetting process. We shouldn’t be here and we shouldn’t be angry at each other because of things _other people did_.)

        Barb Caffrey

        October 8, 2018 at 9:09 am

      • Dear Barb, I’ve been told by trustworthy people that I can come across as harsher that I obviously intend.

        For that I apologize.

        Yes, I don’t know all the facts but the facts I know cause me to hold a reasonable doubt concerning Kavanaugh’s guilt.

        As for his possible behavior at that time, there was been one news story concerning his behavior that turned out to be a lie by the “reporter”.

        In any case, I’ll leave it as an “agree to disagree” situation.

        Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

        October 8, 2018 at 9:33 am

      • That’s fair.

        And yes, there is certainly reasonable doubt here.

        Barb Caffrey

        October 8, 2018 at 11:26 am


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