Barb Caffrey's Blog

Writing the Elfyverse . . . and beyond

Where Can We Be Safe? #Updated

with 57 comments

Update #1: There was a mass shooting this afternoon — no deaths yet reported — at Graceland Cemetery in Racine, WI (where I live). No reason given yet, though the man who was being buried (Da’Shontay “Day Day” King) had apparently fled the police and been shot due to the pursuit.

Why anyone would want to shoot these mourners is beyond me.

In addition, as the names of the victims of the Tulsa Shooting have been released, I wanted to give a link about that. Four people died, including a pioneering Black orthopedic surgeon, Preston J. Phillips; Amanda Glenn, a devoted mother, wife, and also a receptionist; Stephanie Husen, another doctor known in the community as kind and caring; and a retired Army First Sergeant, William Love.

I have to mention two things. Dr. Husen had a devoted canine companion that is not going to understand what’s happened to his loving owner. I hope the dog finds a new forever home in honor of his brave owner. The second is this: William Love was 73. He was with his wife of fifty-five years (they married in 1967) when the gunman rushed in. He first held the door closed so his wife could get out safely, then confronted the gunman.

This meant until the end of his life, he remembered what he’d been taught in the Army.

All honor to him. All blessings to his widow.

Now to the original post, already in progress:

#

Folks, once again in the United States, we’ve had another mass shooting. This time, it was in a medical clinic, because (apparently) the shooter was upset that he still had pain from a surgery in mid-May of this year. The doctor (again, apparently) hadn’t been responsive to the shooter’s pain issues, so the solution for the shooter was this: Shoot the doctor. Shoot another doctor. Shoot the receptionist. Wound a whole bunch of other people. And then shoot himself stone cold dead.

So, let me get this straight. We’ve had shootings in the following places in the last decade: Temples of worship, churches, mosques, supermarkets, concerts (the Las Vegas country music festival comes to mind), outside basketball games (the shooting of 21 people in Milwaukee a few weeks ago comes to mind), movie theatres. People have been shot in their cars and in their homes. People have been shot in assisted living situations and in senior housing, too. There have even been shootings on buses and a few on subway platforms in the past few years. And, of course, there have been the senseless deaths at colleges, universities, and other schools, including the recent shooting in Uvalde, Texas, at an elementary school.

With all of that, I ask this question: Where can we feel safe?

Recently, I played a concert with the Racine Concert Band in a church. (Beautiful church, too.) It’s our 100th anniversary, and we’ve played free concerts in the Racine Zoo or elsewhere during all of that time. It’s certainly a setting where you’d never expect a gunman with a pistol and some sort of rifle (as this shooter at the medical clinic had today).

But as much as I enjoyed playing my saxophone with the band, I still was wary as I got out of my car and went into the building. I kept scanning the audience to make sure there wasn’t anyone suspicious or out to make trouble. (I’ve never done this before while playing a concert. Occasionally, I’ve done it in other places.) And I was glad to get through the concert, not just because we as a group played well (and I didn’t muff an extended solo as I’d feared), but because we hadn’t had our activity marred by senseless violence.

Why must we feel this way in the United States of America? Why is it that I feel as if we got lucky because there wasn’t any senseless violence where we were?

Are we as a band supposed to have armed guards around us to protect us as we play?

(If so, we won’t be playing any free concerts again anytime soon. Armed guards are expensive.)

Before anyone says this, I will: I realize that all life is risk. Every time you step outside, you are risking something. (Brushing against poison ivy or poison oak, for example. Or getting stung by a bee, which would be very bad in my case as I am deathly allergic.) Every time you get into a vehicle, you are risking your life to a degree because you can’t fully predict what other drivers will do.

Those, however, are manageable risks. They are known risks. You can, to a large degree, compensate for them.

With all of these shootings in all of these various places, they were not manageable risks. The Las Vegas shooter used a sniper rifle to kill people from a hotel room high above the festival. The recent shooting at the Buffalo supermarket was made by someone who was a racist and who wanted to kill Black people, and had scoped the area out with pre-planning. (That guy may have been evil, but he was not stupid. He didn’t even live in Buffalo, so how could anyone have predicted he’d do this?) The shootings in El Paso, Texas, a few years back, were also done by a racist who wanted to kill Latinos, and he, too, like the Buffalo gunman, didn’t live in the area and had driven from hours away to murder people for no good reason.

These gunmen were not on anyone’s radar, either, even though coworkers had mentioned that the killer of children and teachers in Uvalde recently had the nickname of “serial killer” at work. He was said to be a scary person, someone you didn’t want to cross. He also had discussed his plans with several young women online, but they didn’t tell anyone because they thought “this is just how guys are, always bragging themselves up.” (That last is a paraphrase of several comments I’ve read, and is not an exact quote.)

There is an argument in all of these shootings that they come from a culture known as “toxic masculinity.” That is, these are men (or in some cases, teenage men) who firmly believe they are right, everyone else is wrong, and because they are the “man,” they get to make the rules even if they’re against society’s covenant.

(Yes, I know this isn’t the way “toxic masculinity” is usually described, but it’s the way I think of it. I defined it this way because most men do not think this way. Thank goodness. Moving on…)

Personally, I think this is happening for three reasons. The first is because so many other shooters have gotten away with their violence in the moment that it’s emboldened other domestic terrorists to do the same. (This is one reason why I refuse to name any gunman at my blog.) The second is because local, state, and federal governments have refused to do anything — or in some cases have been blocked from doing anything — to protect people from deranged shooters. This includes prevention and identifying suspects and realizing that at least half of the domestic terrorists in the above cases were men below the age of twenty-five. (Somehow, the local, state, and federal officials need to figure out who these bad apples are and stop them before they do anything remotely like the horrid acts I’ve listed above.) The third is because people are apathetic and believe nothing can or will be done, because our politicians have made it so.

As I said, I don’t have the answers. I just have the questions.

Now, folks, you have the floor: What do you think? What can be done other than perhaps beefing up budgets to deal with people who are obviously deranged and having some sort of awareness campaign so young people will understand that a guy with the nickname of “serial killer” is not normal?

P.S. Before I end this blog, I also want to point out that most police officers, sheriff’s deputies, federal and state law enforcement, and other personnel are good people. They do the best they can with the limited resources they have. Usually, these folks are maligned when something awful happens (sometimes rightfully — at least, so it seems — as in Uvalde), but they’re the first line of defense. They should be appreciated as much as possible rather than denigrated or besmirched. They stop many bad things from happening that most of us never hear about. Which means things might be even worse without their help…awful as that seems, considering how bad it is already.

57 Responses

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  1. IMO You can drive yourself insane worrying about mass killings outside of high-crime areas.

    For every school (for example) that has a mass-killing, there are thousands (if not more) schools where there wasn’t any mass-killing.

    But IMO the News Media wants To Scare People and Plenty of Politicians want Scared People to support them.

    I could talk about why these sort of lunatics go out and kill people, but in many ways these lunatics (and their actions) are minor compared to the Bigger Problems out there (especially the problems within the US).

    IMO Too many people out there want to Scare People (for various reasons) and plenty of them are in the national News Media.

    Scared people can make stupid decisions that make situations worse than the original situation actually is or was.

    I’ve been watching the News for over 50 years and I’ve heard plenty of attempts by the News Media to Scare People.

    Sadly, I think that there are Major Problems with American Society but the News Media and too many Politicians don’t want to talk about those Problems and often actively support the Problems. 😦

    Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

    June 2, 2022 at 5:34 pm

    • You may be onto something, Paul.

      That said, I had to update this post because we had a mass shooting (no dead, yet) at a local cemetery in Racine, and the names of the victims in Tulsa were released. You’ll like what William Love did; he sacrificed himself so his wife and others might live. All honor to him, and blessings to his widow.

      Barb Caffrey

      June 2, 2022 at 5:47 pm

  2. If I step back and back so that the USA and the UK are in the same lens.
    We in the UK see increases in attacks on medical staff and retail staff to name but two groups.
    In the USA there are increases in gun crime. How many of those ‘attacks’ in the UK would turn into ‘gun crime’ if we didn’t have our strict gun laws is a moot point.
    But looking through the same lens we see similar traits.
    Anger. Impatience. Intolerance. Irrationality. Fear. Rage. Irresponsibility.
    We could draw the whole world into that lens and see the same aspects.
    This does not excuse the circumstances of gun related deaths in the USA, it simply illustrates that in some arenas Humans as a whole cannot not be trusted to ‘police’ themselves.

    deteremineddespitewp

    June 3, 2022 at 4:51 am

    • I think Covid has a great deal to do with why people are so irritable, irrational, impatient, angry, and intolerant.

      Even so, I don’t understand all this gun-related violence. I just don’t get it. Why shoot people at a funeral? It makes no sense!

      Barb Caffrey

      June 3, 2022 at 6:00 am

      • Why shoot at people at a funeral, because of the colour of their skin or at a music festival? There is no sense Barb. There is Insanity, Evil, Rage or Fear to name but a few, but no Justification.
        How to put the brakes on this by ways that suit all rational folk I cannot tell you.
        I have my own solutions but in advance know they would not work within the USA.
        That must come from the vast majority of Americans standing up and saying ‘No More’

        deteremineddespitewp

        June 3, 2022 at 12:55 pm

      • Yeah. I agree with you. But the public now has 90% agreement on a few things — raising the age to buy a gun to 21 has over 50% support, too, last I saw — and yet the politicians do absolutely nothing.

        This again is on Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky (a Republican). As another commentator pointed out at a different post, Mitch is a very wealthy man from Kentucky and his constituents inexplicably love him despite his intransigence and obstinacy.

        (Or maybe because of it, people being what they are. Sometimes I admire intransigence and obstinacy, too, such as in the case of MLK, Jr., as that was on the side of right working for social justice and economic reform. But not in McConnell’s case.)

        Tonight, I read that a congressman (US Rep) from the Buffalo suburbs (where a mass shooting happened a week and a half ago at a supermarket) was told off by his constituents because he wants to raise the legal age to buy a gun to 21. There are behavioral studies that favor this, as people under the age of 21 often have not grown up yet and will do things without thinking. (It has something to do with the prefrontal cortex.) Despite the fact his own district was at least partially affected by what happened, his constituents wanted no changes — none — to the current gun laws as they’re afraid it’s a slippery slope.

        This is partly why the Rs are so intransigent (yes, maybe including McConnell). People are afraid, and some see the shootings and want more and more guns with higher and higher capacity magazines and/or ammo. (I apologize if I’m not saying this correctly as I am not a gun enthusiast. I only know enough to go look stuff up for a story, or to check someone else’s story for consistency and likelihood/verisimilitude.)

        The thing is, even had the school resource officer/policeman been present at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, TX, it is likely that he would not have been able to stop the gunman. Not by himself, though he almost assuredly would’ve tried (as did the police officer in Colorado a few months ago, when he knew he had no body armor but went in and tried to delay the shooter long enough to keep as many people safe as possible before he, himself, died. That man was a hero and I believe more police officers are like him than like the crew in Uvalde.)

        Barb Caffrey

        June 3, 2022 at 8:19 pm

      • There can be no true justifiable case for allowing under 21s to carry guns, other than a blind adherence to a faith in The Gun, which in itself in a gut kick back against what is perceived as ‘liberal’ ways.
        There is another way to look at the statistics on gun deaths too.
        7,000+ US service personnel died during the Iraq / Afghanistan intervention.
        30,000+ have committed suicide.
        That figure is less than the annual total of gun deaths from all causes.
        I doubt it there are many who are at ease with the cost in lives during those twin interventions.
        At yet there are many who are at ease with an annual death toll of 45,000?

        deteremineddespitewp

        June 4, 2022 at 2:01 am

      • “There’s no good reason for people under 21 to be allowed to vote”. [Very Big Sarcastic Grin]

        As for that high number of gun deaths, blame the Democrats. The Vast Majority of those gun deaths happen in High Crime areas with the Strictest Gun Control Laws in the US but Democrats (who control those areas) don’t enforce the existing Gun Control Laws.

        Just like the British authorities ignored the sex grooming done by “Asians” because they didn’t want to be called “Islamophobic”. Of course, the victims were “lower class” white girls and apparently they don’t matter.

        As for your slurs about Republicans and their supporters (like me), IMO that says more about you believing the Garbage pushed by the American News Media.

        Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

        June 4, 2022 at 9:37 am

      • In the UK we have a voting age of 18. And 16-17 when voting in elections for the Scots or Welsh (Senydd) Parliments.
        Of course when voting you make your choice and hope to God you’ve made the right one, and you can change your mind next time around.
        Bearing that in mind, I’m not too sure Paul you can use the analogy betwixt voting and gun onwership.
        It seems another problem for law enforcement in the USA is that someone can purchase a gun in a state where the laws and freer and drive across the state line unimpeded. Technically in some states they could be stopped and searched at the state line, but where are the resources for that?

        Yes that was a dreadful situation with sex grooming.
        It was fair point to make that law enforcement will steer clear of situations which they feel are politically troublesome, and leave folk at the lower end of society to fend for themselves. Highlighting
        A. Another lack of resources.
        B. A community tending to turn a blind eye to what’s going on in its own back yard. A common enough problem irrespective of which community you care to examine.
        C. Abuse of the vulnerable being widespread throughout society at all levels.
        D. Not enough deterrent and efficiency in the legal to ensure perpetrators will be hunted down and made to pay a heavy price.

        In conclusion Paul, relating to your last comment, let me ask you one question, if I may:
        Did you believe the 2020 Presidential Election was stolen? Or was the result a fair one.

        deteremineddespitewp

        June 4, 2022 at 1:38 pm

      • I live too near to Chicago, where the Dead Vote Democratic.

        I find it very hard to believe that Americans actually voted for the current moron in the White House.

        If that makes me Paranoic in your opinion, So Be It.

        Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

        June 4, 2022 at 1:46 pm

      • Let me tell a tale Paul, something of late from Old Britain.
        In 2015 The British Labour Party elected a far-left leader Jeremy Corbyn, after a honeymoon period his faction of the Left took hold of the party. And along came their old predictable play-book hostility to the press as a whole, the BBC, anyone who did not support Corbyn, it all reached visceral levels. Corbyn did little to rein it in. Conspiracy theorists had a glory time.
        In 2019 there was a general election. A fellow named Boris Johnson, something of a buffoon from a privileged background playing the Brexit card and with the aid of the most inept performance by a Labour Party ever won the election with an astounding 88 parliamentary seat majority.
        Corbyn’s base when apoplectic. Out came the excuse book…He had been betrayed by senior Labour Party members. The BBC were biased for the Conservative Party. There was voter fraud. All the Press were against him. (It was a Jewish conspiracy- yep that was in there, one of the old favourites) Anything but the fact that by their own insular, vitriolic, ineptitude they had isolated themselves from a large portion of the UK electorate (in England) and the Conservatives had cleverly worked the First Past The Post system in key constituencies. Anything but the bare boned truth.
        Not that I took much pleasure in it from my own left-wing stance. Here is a facet of the UK Left; if there is one person a UK Leftie hates more than a ring-winger in the UK it’s another UK leftie who lets down the party. Being far-left myself I thought Corbyn and his crew had betrayed the whole set up by failing to get voted in, which is what it is all about. I blamed them, not the Media, not some secret cabal, not betrayal. Elections are often Lost not Won. And that Labour teamed gifted the Conservatives and the worst Prime Minister ever to sit in the post.
        The Morale: Sometimes we just have to accept that our side lost and that their strategy was a gift to the other side.
        Sometimes we have to accept a lot that might not suit.

        deteremineddespitewp

        June 4, 2022 at 3:33 pm

      • Yawn!

        In other election years, I would have accepted that “My Side Lost”.

        However, once Trump apparently won the Republican nomination, the Hate-Mongers of the Left started shouting and spewed more Garbage against Trump than I’ve seen before against any Republican candidate for the Presidency.

        And it continued during the campaign, after he won and during his Presidency.

        You Are Expecting Me To Believe That The Hate-Mongers Of The Left would play fare.

        After all, if you believe that Trump is Another Hitler, then What’s Wrong In Cheating To Prevent Him to win a second Term?

        Sorry Little Brit, I prefer to Believe that the Haters of the Democratic Party would do anything Legal or Illegal to prevent Trump from serving a second Term.

        Right now, it has become clear that “Russia-Gate” was a product of the Hilary Clinton campaign and the National News Media “went along with it”.

        Right now, it is clear that Democratic House is attempting to prove that Trump wanted an insurrection but have only shown IMO how much they Hate Trump.

        Right now, it is clear that the News Media and the Democrats Hate anybody who doesn’t “Believe The Proper Way”.

        Considering IIRC that you hated Trump, I don’t give your opinion on US Politics any real meaning.

        I won’t go as far as say that you would support Fraud in order to get rid of Trump but I suspect that plenty of Democrats would support Fraud in this case if they actually knew that the Fraud actually happened.

        Note to Barb, I don’t believe that you are one of those Democrats even though I know your opinion of Trump.

        Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

        June 4, 2022 at 3:55 pm

      • Oh Paul, the irony. You sound just like one of those folk I was talking about on in my own side of Politics.
        Normally I would shake my head and walk away, but the thing is.
        Gee, I loved America from the mid-teens. Its culture, its vibrancy, its open mindedness, its optimism. Even through its previous bad times I embraced it. The fact I was a hard-line Left Winger (by the way that stance would give a lot of Americans both Republican and Democrats nightmares), did not matter a jot to me because in America things were different Socialism as I knew it just would not work, period.
        I even went on Radio to criticise bad mouth comments made in the UK Press about the USA when George Bush jnr was elected for the second term. I called out my own alleged fellow-travellers for near racists comments about Americans. Loved the USA.
        And now its all gone.
        Y’see you talk about the bad time Trump got when he was elected. I could cite the howls of outrages when Obama was elected.
        Loved your nation Paul. And its hurting me to see it tear itself apart. The world needs the USA, as United….States of America and it’s all falling apart because folk won’t compromise, talk together and to do that you have to step outside of your zone.
        We’ve seen enough of that in Europe to know how it plays out. Yours is still a young country, in danger of dying. It takes at least two sides to cause that.
        Sorry ’bout that length of comment, but its my adopted nation, in danger of going terminal.
        Take care you guys. History warns of harsh task masters.

        deteremineddespitewp

        June 4, 2022 at 4:30 pm

      • That is what I fear too, Roger.

        I worked for Hillary in 2008 as a volunteer and again in 2016 for her, because I saw her as unnecessarily vilified due to being a strong woman. I investigated the various things (such as Vince Foster) and found no merit in them. (When someone is suicidal, we often want there to be a reason for it that isn’t that they gave up or that their mental illness won. I understand this as a very good friend of mine committed suicide when I was under 25. It was awful. But I digress.)

        Anyway, in ’08 I firmly believed Hillary was better prepared for DC than Obama. Obama was the darling of the media, and Hillary had trouble getting any traction from them. (This is why I mostly agree with Paul about how the media skews everything.) They saw Obama as a history-making candidate and ignored Hillary as also a history-making candidate. Obama had only a few short years as a US Senator before ascending to the Presidency and had good intentions but no idea how to get Congress as a whole to act. Hillary had spent a lot of time as First Lady, then as a Senator from NY, and knew compromise would not be easy but was possible. As she said on the campaign trail, to believe otherwise was hoping for the celestial choir to start singing. It’s lovely to dream about, but it’s not going to happen. And she quite rightly pointed out that Obama was going to have to find his feet, whereas she was ready to go right away.

        I was surprised but pleased when Obama picked Hillary as Secretary of State. He truly meant it when he said he wanted to assemble a team of rivals, along the lines Lincoln did in 1861. I think she did an excellent job, for the most part, as Secretary of State, and unlike our current Sec. State (or the two former ones that Trump had in office), she put out regular, clearly worded press briefings. She also went on cable news shows to explain whatever it was that was going on, and loyally supported Obama as best she could.

        The thing is about Hillary that without being Bill Clinton’s wife, she’d never have gotten to the point of being a major candidate for the presidency. (Or being a major party’s candidate for election as in 2016.) This is how the first woman to ascend to high office usually gets there: they are related in some way to some man who has power, and that way they realize they can do it, too. (In your country, Margaret Thatcher came to power and that was not a factor for her. I don’t think Angela Merkel in Germany came to power that way, either. But Indira Gandhi did, and several others, such as Aung San Suu Kyi, have done so as well.)

        Anyway, the first person to do a job has the hardest time. There are no role models. There’s no one to follow. Which is why it’s much easier and far more likely for someone like the Bush twins (if they wanted to go into office, which they don’t), or Chelsea Clinton (who again does not seem to wish to go for office) to ascend to the highest office in the land if their abilities and drive match that exalted position.

        I very much fear for our country, Roger. I truly do. But I hope there are enough people of good will still remaining to somehow find consensus and get some good done for the hard-working people of the USA rather than billionaires (as I think they’ve made their pile of money already, and don’t need any help).

        Barb Caffrey

        June 4, 2022 at 5:22 pm

      • I too fear for the USA Barb, and as a brit who has spent most of his life, loving from afar the USA, its vibrancy, variety and optimism, this current circumstance upsets me greatly.
        I agree with you on the Obama / Clinton nomination race. The media though can be a troublesome friend as ready to ditch you as embrace you. I think therefore the Obama team ‘worked’ the media better than the ‘Clinton’ team. Again, it’s how politics works…always has done- even back to Classical Greece.
        Though a person playing the media should bear in mind something Oliver Cromwell said:
        ‘Do not trust to that, for these very people would shout as much if you and I were going to be hanged.’ – Response to John Lambert’s remarks that he ‘was glad to see we had the nation on our side’ as they were cheered by a crowd in June 1650 at the end of one part of the British Civil Wars of the 17th Century.
        Pity help anyone vulnerable who comes to the media’s attention (As in the case of Vince Foster)

        deteremineddespitewp

        June 5, 2022 at 3:18 am

      • Yes. It’s a very difficult thing, to be in power. I think there’s a reason the old Romans always had someone right behind the victor in a parade saying into the victor’s ear, “Remember, you are mortal.” (I think the point was that the victors, as much strategy as they’d used, were far from infallible, and they could and did make many errors. Their fall could be as catastrophic, and as swift, as their rise.)

        Barb Caffrey

        June 7, 2022 at 5:07 am

      • The History of Rome is a good example Barb, as in Greece too.
        Probably one of the most adept was Agustus. Whereas he became the first emperor he worked the crowd (and the Senate) with a facade of The Republic.
        But Rome itself knew stability and peace (not so much on the borders of course, the legions were ever busy).
        Probably not the most etherical and honest of men, but no civil wars or purges of populations. Which in those days was ‘not bad’ and the most folk could hope for.

        deteremineddespitewp

        June 7, 2022 at 11:41 am

      • Yes. There have always been a percentage of people who would trade stability/safety for autocracy. Back then, most people had no choice…but now, as we do, we should reject autocracy with great force. (As one judge recently said here, “Presidents are not Kings.” Much less old-fashioned kings, rather than the constitutional monarchs of today.)

        Barb Caffrey

        June 7, 2022 at 9:00 pm

      • Agreed Barb we have evolved beyond those times ( true there was not a lot of option in those days; the sword being the go-to-solution for most disputes).
        Hanging onto to Democracy as Democracy for all is another issue. A surprising number of folk see it as only in their way and not the series of compromises which is the only true way.

        deteremineddespitewp

        June 8, 2022 at 3:09 am

      • Yeah. I agree with you.

        There’s something to be said for refusing to backslide. Allowing autocracy in a formerly democratic country would indeed be backsliding. 😦

        Barb Caffrey

        June 8, 2022 at 8:05 pm

      • This is something I have thought about for a while Barb.
        If you compare Europe with USA.
        Europe comes from a jagged history of authoritarian rule, which when it was perceived to fail was kicked against, often replacing it with another of the same sort. Eventually democracy grew, although there is a still a nascent sentiment (on extremes of both political sides) for ‘strong’ government.
        Now the USA was born of a mindset of independence and free-thinking, even if that did mean in some cases the right to know what was best for the community. Thus, the USA has evolved along a different line, underscored by the idea of ‘independence’. This, as you can see these days, is a double-edged sword, Independence does not always equate with Responsibility and Tolerance.
        However, those who are trying to impose their own narrow set of values on the whole nation are missing the point that the heritage of Independence is not theirs alone. Thus, if they seem to achieve their wishes, then they will face a kick-back they have not expected or are prepared for. Some say People will just accept it. Those folk have not read the histories involving terrorism and the hows and whys as to why it arises.
        Some might say I am alarmist. I would reply ‘Northern Ireland 1968-1999’.
        There are folk out there in the political arena who are like kids in a forest in high summer, playing with matches.

        deteremineddespitewp

        June 9, 2022 at 2:48 am

      • I keep hearing about the “bad comments” about Obama but I don’t remember hearing the sort of shit about him that gets thrown at Republicans including Trump.

        Oh, you talk about “two sides” to the “conflict”.

        Well, there can be no peace when one side doesn’t want peace only surrender and it’s the Left that doesn’t want peace.

        The Rest of us want to be left alone but the Left doesn’t want to do that so we have to fight back.

        There’s no possible compromise when one side wants everything.

        Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

        June 4, 2022 at 5:33 pm

      • Paul, about that ‘one side doesn’t want peace only surrender ‘
        Which group do you recall storming a place of government in January 2021?

        deteremineddespitewp

        June 5, 2022 at 3:20 am

      • “Storming the House of Government”?

        If there was a Real Storming Of The House Of Government on Jan 6th, Trump would still be President or a Real Civil War would have happened.

        Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

        June 5, 2022 at 9:11 am

      • No Paul. Denial does not cut it.
        I’ve been down this road with fellow Left-Wingers. We would all like to have things the way we thought they ought to be but Reality has to be faced.
        Sorry.

        deteremineddespitewp

        June 5, 2022 at 12:14 pm

      • To Be Blunt, if I was planning an insurrection, I would make sure the people involved were heavily armed.

        Idiot Europeans complain about “how many guns Americans own” but nobody involved in the “Storming” were armed.

        Oh, I’ll be ignoring your posts from now on.

        You obviously either Don’t Think or Lack The Intelligence To Think.

        Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

        June 5, 2022 at 1:09 pm

      • Oh Paul now you’re down to insults. Which means yeah I would call it off at this stage, because this is Barb’s blog and not ours.
        Now if you do want to continue this, I’d be happy to.
        politicsandhistory359465094.wordpress.com

        deteremineddespitewp

        June 5, 2022 at 4:13 pm

      • Some of why the folks who ran and ransacked the White House while shouting things like “Hang Mike Pence” and trying to crush a police officer between a door had brought guns to nearby areas but weren’t able to get them into the DC area. As it stood, they had rappelling lines, zip ties, bear spray, mace, billy clubs, brass knuckles, and a whole lot more stuff along that line because they were angry and they just wanted to burn it all down. (And to hang Mike Pence.)

        The folks who didn’t go into the White House and stood outside and prayed, or even those who said “I hate Mike Pence” but didn’t say they wanted to hang him of course were using their First Amendment right of free speech.

        As I’ve said before, Paul, it was a matter of luck that some of them got out before the folks that stormed into the Capitol (I think I said the WH before, but I meant the Capitol; long hours rot the brain), including Mitt Romney and VP Pence.

        As to your other comment, I think you should read some of Roger’s books. He has two very fine British histories from a comic perspective, and I know I enjoyed them immensely. (Anyone who can keep all that stuff straight without a scorecard definitely is one smart cookie.)

        Barb Caffrey

        June 7, 2022 at 5:14 am

      • They certainly tried, Paul. The Proud Boys, and other groups like them, tried their damndest to do exactly what you said. There were people with plastic zip ties, with rappelling equipment, and some of them knew exactly where to go to cause the most havoc in the least amount of time.

        It was only a matter of luck in some cases that Senators and also Vice President Pence were not taken and harmed. (The whole chant of “Hang Mike Pence!” was one of the most disgraceful things I’ve ever heard in my entire life.)

        Barb Caffrey

        June 7, 2022 at 5:09 am

      • Paul, I don’t want everything. I don’t know anyone who does, either.

        There are ways to compromise on some issues that I’ve learned through talking to people on the right over the years. For example, there is a possible free-market solution to health care. Putting clinics in Walgreens, and other pharmacies, would help. There could be tax breaks for pharmacies that have the most uninsured patients (or low-income patients with some insurance). This sort of idea would be welcomed on the right — or at least it would’ve been up until a few years ago — because it is commonsensical, it would save money, and it combines tax breaks for companies with more health care choices for everyone. (My idea is to use a sliding-scale fee like what the San Francisco city health plan used years ago. I don’t know if they still use it, but I hope they do. That way, everyone pays something, but no one is broken by the cost of their meds.)

        As for Obama, you have to go back a few years for it, but he indeed had crap thrown at him. The media in a big way fawned over him early, and that was not right; that set him up to be everything to everyone, and who can be everything to everyone this side of eternity?

        Anyway, I agree that Trump got a lot of criticism from the media and some was possibly not deserved. His outward aspect was confusing to the media — I call his bombastic ways “outward aspect,” as that’s what he learned to do as a businessperson — and he did do some very helpful things, such as help with fast-tracking the Covid vaccines and trying to find things that might help lessen the impact of Covid. (The fact that his administration sent out several stimulus payments didn’t hurt, either.)

        These were all good things that Trump did, Paul.

        There were other things that I, quite frankly, didn’t understand. Why was Trump so cozy with Vladimir Putin, who was the head of Russia’s secret service before he ever became so prominent in Russian politics? Why were some of Trump’s hand-picked aides so awful at handling money? (The Sec. of the Interior, I think, was someone who spent hundreds of thousands of dollars for new doors to his office. This is just off the top of my head, mind, as there were three or four different financial scandals going on that would’ve sunk any other administration’s officials. But it didn’t in these cases not because there was no wrongdoing, but because there was so much bad news coming that a lot of the stuff about peculation and possibly even financial corruption — my term, not a legal one — just got crowded out.)

        Anyway, what are you fighting back against at this point? I would like to know.

        Barb Caffrey

        June 7, 2022 at 4:51 am

      • Thanks, Paul. I do not believe the ends justify the means, except maybe in WW II. (There, Hitler had to be stopped.)

        Here’s where I agree with you, Paul. The media really went after Mitt Romney in ’12. While I was never going to vote for him, I felt what they did to him was unfair. They capitalized on some verbal gaffes (every candidate for the Presidency makes them), and tried to make him seem like a buffoon when he’s actually a learned man who speaks a bunch of different languages. He also was capable of compromise when he was Governor of Massachusetts, and that’s not easy to do there when you’re an R and most of the Legislature is made up of Ds and a few Is. He’d already shown leadership as a governor and almost certainly would’ve been a good President of the US. I felt he was prepared for the job, and had he won, I would’ve sat back and waited to see what he’d do.

        I think after seeing so many R candidates getting vilified for no reason, R supporters got to the point that they just didn’t believe much of the media anymore. This is where entertainment helped Trump, because The Apprentice and The Celebrity Apprentice showcased him as shrewd, intelligent, calculating, and family oriented (as he always had his kids around him). Most people have seen at least a few of those shows (I know I have), and saw that portrayal of Trump.

        Was he acting? Possibly. Were the producers doing everything they could to make him appear (in retrospect) Presidential? Probably.

        Going back further than that, George W. Bush wasn’t a bad man either. I don’t know if he was better prepared than Al Gore was in 2000. I do know that the media never once talked about his personality to the best of my knowledge, nor about his love of dogs. (I didn’t know he loved dogs until he got out of office.) I didn’t know he painted for relaxation (some of his paintings are highly regarded, too, I have heard). I had no idea what sort of person he was, excepting that he’d married a fine woman in Laura Bush and had some nice kids.

        Whereas Al Gore and his marriage to Tipper Gore was highlighted (even though we found out in retrospect that their marriage was in serious trouble; they ended up divorced). We heard about his family, about his father (everyone knew about George W. Bush’s father George H.W. Bush, but that’s the only time we ever got any congruency with regards to how both candidates were treated), and the national media based in DC and NY did their best to portray Al Gore in soft pastels while they portrayed George W. Bush in clashing, contrasting colors.

        So, knowing all this, I can see why some folks just didn’t trust the national media anymore. They had an implicit bias. They also had confirmation bias. I don’t think they wanted to have this, but they did, and they had no idea it was even a factor.

        My view of national politics is this: It’s often messy. I dislike it. I think we need honest people in office who aren’t going to benefit themselves, who will instead work for the greater benefit of the people of their state and the country as a whole.

        Most of the time we don’t get anywhere close to that.

        But occasionally, something good gets done that everyone can agree with. (The infrastructure program Biden put together is one of those things. Had Trump done this in his first year of office rather than work on that tax cut that benefitted the wealthy the most, I think he’d probably still be in office even with his bombastic personality and braggadocio attitude.)

        Barb Caffrey

        June 4, 2022 at 5:11 pm

      • In Wisconsin, I know Trump lost in ’20. I know the reason he lost in ’20, also. There was a big bunch of folks who were Rs who voted for every other R on the ticket, but did not vote for Trump. Some of them said after the election that the second debate performance of Trump’s, where he was already ill and didn’t know it, and seemed a bit off (or a whole lot off, take your pick) and into the weeds with various conspiracy theories, was why they held their noses and cast votes for Biden.

        IOW, some of the Rs here said that Joe Biden is at least a decent human being. Trump did not seem to be, to them. (I share that opinion, as Paul knows. The “grab them by the (privates)” comment pretty much was the end as far as I was concerned.)

        Wisconsin is a purple state, which is why it is almost always narrowly decided. In this case, I believe it was Trump’s second debate performance that did him in, here.

        Barb Caffrey

        June 4, 2022 at 4:59 pm

      • I have never liked Trump as a person and am always suspicious of folk no matter of which politics who have not ‘paid their dues’ in the UK / USA political worlds who claim they will clean things up.
        Whether folk like it or not (and they usually don’t) experience counts for a heck of a lot. Trump’s frustration at not having things his own way all the time showed and opened the gates to others who cast off their experience and tried to emulate him.
        Democracies are about compromises, accommodations and of course disappointments; that’s why they are democracies.

        deteremineddespitewp

        June 5, 2022 at 3:08 am

      • There are still many good Rs out there, Roger, and many good people who have voted for the Rs. The traditional conservative way is one that we have needed since the USA’s inception.

        But yes, we have to have compromise, or we have no government. And right now, as I said before, all I see is gridlock. 😦

        Barb Caffrey

        June 7, 2022 at 5:05 am

      • To get out this mess there must be compromise and a move back to the middle road.
        Apart from the most intransigent, the consensus in Northern Ireland was that both sides had to stop shot shooting and bombing and start talking.
        It is still a balancing act there (Brexit has caused problems no one on the mainland UK thought about)

        deteremineddespitewp

        June 7, 2022 at 11:36 am

      • Yeah. I understand. That all sounded like such a mess. That “what is Brexit” was trending on the day of the referendum, IIRC, led me to believe that a period of instability was in order.

        Barb Caffrey

        June 7, 2022 at 8:58 pm

      • The Brexit debate was and still is the British version of the visceral passions generated in the USA over gun control.
        Since I am strongly anti-Brexit (aka ‘Remainer’) I am not really the one to supply an unbiased account.
        The closest parallel I can draw is a US state deciding to secede, in a civil, civic way.
        My own notion is that sometime (maybe not in my lifetime- I’m 70) we will return cap in hand and sadder and wiser land. (That’s assuming the UK is still the U – k)

        deteremineddespitewp

        June 8, 2022 at 3:06 am

      • That’s kind of what I think, too, Roger. Boris Johnson had no idea how interconnected the UK’s economy was to the EU. I think he’s found out differently now, but… sigh.

        Barb Caffrey

        June 8, 2022 at 8:05 pm

      • Quite right Barb, but we are locked in, and must navigate these turbulent waters.

        deteremineddespitewp

        June 9, 2022 at 2:36 am

      • I agree with you, Roger. The problem is, there are people who believe that statistics either lie, or tell a story that can be manipulated. They don’t see raw numbers, and maybe only consider what’s going on in their own neck of the woods, so to speak.

        “Not in my backyard” is real.

        Barb Caffrey

        June 4, 2022 at 4:24 pm

    • “If Men were Angels, we’d need no government. If Angels were to govern us, government would need no limits”

      The above was written by James Madison in the Federalist Papers.

      Sadly, some people who think that “people must be controlled” forget that the controllers are people as well.

      Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

      June 3, 2022 at 9:24 am

      • I know Paul. For many years I have pondered on the pluses and minuses of the various governmental systems.
        My own inclination, which is born of one of the many European viewpoints, is for a centralised government with a firmer control. Now that said, the problem there, as you have pointed out is the old question ‘Who Guards The Guards?’.
        By the same token there can be viewed a slender line between strong justified feelings and unfocused rage mixed with paranoia. I witnessed this often spouted by one wing of our own Left of Centre socialist movement. In fact I perceived little difference between their emotions and those proclaimed by fierce right-wingers in the USA.
        A scan around the entire world and its histories shows catalogues of failures and abuses. Movements which started out with good intentions dissolving into excesses and
        people turning out each other. Accommodations made with brutality because it was perceived as being the only practical way.
        Greed being allowed to fester as no one could figure out a practical way to manage an economy on an Ethical basis.
        Wars happening, for the basic reason that one group / nation is not confident that another group / nation will not turn on the first group / nation.
        I could go on, basically there are flaws in Humanity but we do not admit to those flaws within us all, including ourselves.
        Until we grasp that nettle there will be only second and third best solutions, and people will suffer.

        deteremineddespitewp

        June 3, 2022 at 1:22 pm

      • This is one reason why many people believe in an eternity where everyone is healthy, happy, and sees all their loved ones (including pets for most of us). We want so desperately to believe in a better life somewhere…

        Anyway, Roger, you are right. Solutions require compromise almost all of the time. Right now, we have no compromise in this country — or so it seems. (As I said to you in another comment I just made, one Republican congressman from Buffalo was told by his own constituents that they are angry with him for wanting to raise the age to buy guys to 21 despite what happened in Buffalo. If even that Rep. can’t get his own constituents behind us, what can the rest of us do?)

        I think we need a third party to arise that is responsible and reliable. The Rs in power have mostly (seemingly) lost their way. They definitely have forgotten about “flyover country,” including my own Wisconsin, Paul’s Illinois, my good friends’ states Iowa, Indiana, and Michigan, and other states like Nebraska and Minnesota. The local politicians often are far more receptive than the feds, but the way money flows to these candidates mean they will be much more likely to be obstinate and obstructionist, as it’s by design.)

        I think I’ve said this before, but it bears repeating: We need a responsible conservative party in this country. We need them. They are good at figuring out where the money is, what it’s being spent upon, and they worry about things such as the National Debt. These are all important things, and it’s something most long-time Rs are very, very good at watching and/or trying to do something about it. (I credit my former Rep., also former Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan, for much good will as he was better at explaining the budget the House was dealing with and what to do about it than anyone.)

        The problem is, again, that the obstructionism and obstinacy by the federal Rs seems to be a feature of their candidacy rather than a design flaw they’re working to fix. And they bring home just enough bacon that they keep getting sent back to Congress (or the Senate) over and over despite hardening into obstinacy and obstructionism on anything except their pet projects. 😦

        Barb Caffrey

        June 3, 2022 at 8:27 pm

      • LOL

        The “Republicans have lost touch with Fly-Overs”?

        The Democrats have never been in touch with Fly-Overs. They only love the powerful city-dwellers and ignore concerns of everybody else.

        For that matter, when you talk about Illinois, just remember that Chicago Rules Illinois and the Democrats Rule Chicago.

        As for that nonsense about “being 21 to purchase guns”, for every under-21-criminal, there are thousands of under-21 “kids” who are not criminals and would not do a mass-shooting.

        As far as I’m concerned too many weak-minded people have fallen for the Scare-Tactics of the News Media and the Left.

        As I’ve said before, mass-shootings of innocents are extremely rare in the US.

        Now, mass-shootings are somewhat common in the High-Crime areas of Democratic Controlled Cities but YOUR DEMOCRATS DON’T CARE HOW MANY CIVILIANS GET KILLED THERE.

        Oh, most of those Democratic Controlled Cities and States have harsher gun-control than the rest of the US and have worst crime including crime using ILLEGAL Guns.

        Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

        June 3, 2022 at 8:45 pm

      • Paul, I didn’t say the Ds are right either. Much of the time, the loudest people make the noise and the more moderate voices are not heard. The loudest people in the Democratic Party or are aligned with the Democratic Party (like Bernie Sanders, who is technically an I) say stuff that makes no sense in the Midwest or Plains states.

        And you are often right, Paul, about some D lawmakers. (There are good ones who aren’t saying stuff just to get their names in the papers that are equivalent to the “backbenchers” of the UK’s House of Commons. We just don’t hear much about them unless they live in our district or state.)

        Paul, I know that Chicago and its suburbs dwarf what’s going on in the rural areas of Illinois. I know, from driving through the rural areas, that many of them need help and assistance. I don’t know why they’re not getting it as I’m not a resident of IL. But I can clearly see the decay in some areas, and I don’t like it at all.

        Remember, Paul, I am more of a “How do we get this done despite the posturing?” sort of person rather than “anyone is always right.” I don’t think anyone — anyone at all — is always right, this side of eternity. (As my late uncle and aunt used to say, “Only Jesus was perfect. The rest of us are forgiven for not being such.”)

        The politician you need to watch who’s a D is Chris Murphy of Connecticut, a Senator. His speech “What are we doing?” is among the best speeches I’ve ever heard against obstinacy and intransigence. (You may not agree with his conclusions, but he is right that nothing is happening due to obstinacy and intransigence.)

        Finally, Paul, there are a few articles in WaPo and NYT that you may want to look at (if you can see them without them being behind a paywall). One shows very clearly that of the various mass shootings over the past twenty years, only five were committed by women. Forty percent were committed by men under the age of 25 (most under age 21), and another 33 percent were committed by men between the ages of 25-55. (The first are school shootings, usually. The second are job-related shootings, such as the one at Miller-Coors in Milwaukee a few years ago.)

        That’s why I do think the age to buy a gun should be raised, with perhaps a few exceptions, to age 21. (The few exceptions would have to do with hunting and/or people who go into law enforcement at first maturity.)

        Barb Caffrey

        June 3, 2022 at 8:52 pm

      • So you punish thousands of under-21 guys because a few shoot innocents? Really Brillant! [Sarcastic Grin]

        And like most Liberals, you ignore the criminals who shouldn’t get guns but do get guns illegally but your Democrats don’t do shit about crime in their cities.

        As for Senator Murphy, I don’t listen to Democrats because they likely ignore the High Crime levels in Democrat control areas.

        As for “posturing”, you are obviously buying into the Democratic Posturing.

        Have a nice day.

        Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

        June 3, 2022 at 9:03 pm

      • I appreciate the comments, Paul, as it shows you’re willing to discuss this emotionally loaded issue. Too many folks just won’t talk about it and that’s partly why our country is in the mess it’s in.

        I agree with you about unregistered guns being a major problem in urban areas. There doesn’t seem to be much of a solution to that except for getting more police out there, but that’s a short-term solution at best. The long-term solution is to give people better options than committing crimes.

        Again, I blame the pandemic for a lot of this — not the unregistered guns issue or the urban issue, but the fact that people are so on edge and unhappy. That’s why, with all the guns we have in this country, we’ve had all these different mass shootings. The stats show, as I said before, that if you are under 25, and you’re going to commit murder with a gun, you do it one way (usually at a school or a university). If you are between the ages of 25 and 50, then you tend to do something like that in a workplace setting (either where you work or where you used to work).

        Of course, the vast majority of people of any age don’t do this, Paul. We hear about the exceptions. We’ve always heard about the exceptions.

        That said, there are more of these exceptions than ever, and our birthrate continues to fall. This means there’s a higher percentage of people who aren’t stable out there.

        Long-term, the solutions that may work — and I say “may” because we haven’t tried them yet — are the ones I listed above.

        I do think you should listen to Senator Murphy for the same reason I try to listen to stuff said by John Cornyn or another Senator like him that does his job and doesn’t make much national news. (That’s why I said Cornyn rather than Ted Cruz, BTW, because Cruz regularly makes news and lots of people know about him.) Murphy isn’t a guy to make headlines very often, so when he gets upset, he usually has something important to say.

        It may not be something you want to hear, Paul. But keeping your mind open and listening to people who are trying to find solutions, as I believe Cornyn and Murphy both are, beats believing all one side is evil and all the other side is good. (That is two-dimensional thinking, and reality is almost never like that.)

        One final thought, Paul. While I don’t agree with the idea of defunding the police, I agree there should be more social workers, counselors, and other people trained in mental health advocacy to assist whenever possible. (In a ruralized area, where there aren’t that many people, such as my ex-husband’s county in Iowa that may have had something like 9,000 people in the whole county, that is not possible. But otherwise, I hope we can make it so.) It’s not fair to ask the police to help with so many mental health interventions without getting them some expert assistance.

        Barb Caffrey

        June 4, 2022 at 4:38 pm

      • There is mindset prevalent in the current Republican Party and its supporter base which is perplexing, in that it is normally one seen on the fringes. Fringes are nothing new. The UK Labour Party suffered a period of self-inflicted disaster when such a group took hold under Jeremy Corbyn.
        The Republican Fringe mindset seems to be set on dismantling all which has been put in place over the past decades, just ‘because’. It is not a new phenomenon; and it never works because a large portion of the population are disaffected by this revision which in turn leads to more conflict and intransigence.
        And in turn gives a fertile breeding ground on both sides for that pernicious plague of the past decades ‘The Conspiracy Theory’ which too many folk (on all sides) are willing to swallow.

        deteremineddespitewp

        June 4, 2022 at 2:16 am

      • Roger, I think there’s a lot to be said for this. Jeremy Corbyn was a messed-up person IMHO and the political faction he led just wanted to burn it all down and didn’t care about what chaos would be left afterward.

        The main issue here is, the big lobbyists have control of both major parties. It’s not a surprise. That anything decent gets done despite this is probably miraculous, but it’s not something we’ve appreciated until now. I guess it’s cold comfort to realize that most of our public servants except for the past twenty-five years or so were really trying to find solutions rather than aid gridlock.

        Right now, all we get is gridlock. And it surely seems to me that the ones with the most to gain by gridlock are the fed-level Rs, because if they can make sure nothing happens, there will be a groundswell of “throw the bums out” in D areas, meaning more Rs will get elected.

        Here’s the issue I have with that. Very few Rs right now are able to both be reasonably independent and stay far away from Donald Trump. Trump represents the “burn it all down” wing of the R Party at the moment, at least to me.

        Good Rs like Adam Kinzinger and Liz Cheney have been ostracized from their own party — Justin Amash, too — and Amash and Kinzinger got out of the Congress (or are getting out; Kinzinger is not running for reelection and Amash got out the last cycle). Cheney is in a primary with a Trump-backed candidate in Wyoming and much money is flooding in from various folks angry with her over her stance that insurrection is wrong no matter who has committed it. (Paul is likely to get upset with my characterization of this, but it’s the best way I’ve got.)

        Now, here’s the D analogue to that. For all the money that’s flowing in to somehow get Cheney out, there’s a ton of money flowing into Marcus Flowers’ coffers in Georgia. These are areas where if the prevailing winds and whims of the voters hold true, there’s no way to get Cheney out and there’s no way to get Marjorie Taylor Greene out. Yet people want to send a message and they send money to make a statement, which goes like this: “I hate you, Cheney! I hate you, Greene!”

        That doesn’t mean it’s flat-out impossible to oust either one of them. It has happened before, albeit rarely, in both the House and Senate. (The last time I remember a popular figure with a good amount of power being ousted was Tom Daschle of South Dakota, a Democratic Majority Leader. So it does happen. But this was back in 2005.)

        Barb Caffrey

        June 4, 2022 at 4:52 pm

      • Typical illustration of the self-absorbed, isolationist attitude of his grouping. As a left-winger myself, their ineptitude drove me crazy. But enough about past disasters.
        Thanks very much Barb for that detailed up- date on the current state of politics down at the day-to-day level.
        If you took out the venom and the level of hysteria a lot of what’s going on would be Politics Business As Usual (Democracy is messy and unsatisfactory but is by far and away better than all the alternatives).
        You’ve highlighted the main current problem the ‘I hate you’ factor.
        Someone with the paternalistic confident
        If people are not very careful and realise what is at stake they will hand this over to the folk of violence

        deteremineddespitewp

        June 5, 2022 at 2:57 am

      • That is what I fear, Roger.

        Earlier today, I was grocery shopping, and talked to one of my favorite cashiers. She is down-to-Earth, honest, and yet very frustrated with the current state of affairs. The gas prices have easily doubled since Biden took office and wages certainly haven’t doubled to keep up with the price hike. (This hits us especially hard in Wisconsin because we have awful public transit — we have almost no services save Greyhound buses between cities, and those don’t run very often. We do have some Amtrak lines but not many. Cities have some bus service, but again, it might not be as much as you might expect elsewhere.)

        She said to me, “We have to wait two years, and then everything will get better.”

        I asked, “Why?”

        She said, “Because we’ll have a new President then.” (And she really does not like Biden, because she feels he makes too many verbal gaffes.)

        See, to her, she’s looking at what used to be called bare-bones issues. Bread-and-butter issues, also, it’s been termed.

        Gas prices under Trump were far lower, therefore Trump must’ve been a better President. It’s as simple as that, to her.

        I told her I doubted any of the great Presidents could do much better under these circumstances. (She also thinks Trump never would’ve sent money to Ukraine. I told her then we’d have had tons of refugees more than we do now.)

        Barb Caffrey

        June 7, 2022 at 4:56 am

      • One thing I have learnt Barb over these many years is that nothing is ever simple.
        There are no simple solutions and there are always consequences.
        ‘Full steam ahead and damn the torpedoes,’ very rarely works out as an equitable solution.
        It’s all about navigation and compromises

        deteremineddespitewp

        June 7, 2022 at 11:33 am

      • Yes, it is, Roger. I agree with that.

        Barb Caffrey

        June 7, 2022 at 8:57 pm

      • That’s true, Paul. We are all human, and thus fallible, mortal, and capable of much error.

        That we at least some of the time make good decisions and have good creative output (whether it be music, dance, art, sculpture, writing, etc.) despite it all is what gives me hope every day that we can make a better world than the one we inherited.

        Barb Caffrey

        June 3, 2022 at 8:12 pm

  3. Barb, for your information, I will no longer be getting posts from this blog.

    You may be a nice lady, but you never really think about what people like me say here.

    You are stuck in the Lefty Narrative.

    Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

    June 5, 2022 at 1:39 pm

    • Paul, I would like to know what you are fearful of, if you are able to discuss it.

      There’s a lot wrong on the Left and there’s a lot wrong on the Right. That we can’t talk to each other as people is something that is deeply frustrating to me.

      I’ve said it before and will say it again: My view is, we need a good party on the Right to balance. We need more centrists in office (though the way districts have been drawn, to put supermajorities of one party or the other as the likely winner due to past voting tendencies, definitely works against that). We need to find some sort of common-sense solutions, and we have to somehow figure out how to avoid the worst pitfalls.

      I would like to think we can still find some sort of common ground. (Here’s another example, if you come back to look at my replies: It’s obvious that in the Midwest that we are nowhere close to switching to, say, a solely nuclear power alternative. We must have coal and we must be able to somehow use this without harming the environment any more than it has been hurt already. We also must have a good amount of gas and oil, because we are absolutely not ready for electric cars in this area. We can use hybrids, sure. But all electric cars? No.)

      Barb Caffrey

      June 7, 2022 at 5:02 am

  4. […] I wrote a blog a while ago called “Where Can We Be Safe?“ […]


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