What Connects Thanksgiving, Christmas, Solstice, and New Year’s Day?

A Time for Reflection, Recalibration, and Assessment


Happy Whatever

To say that we are in the holiday season would be an understatement. I read that from 1 November – 15 January 7 major religions celebrate 25 holidays. Tis the season. This is, of course, part of the continuing dialogue over the made-up war on Christmas. Acknowledging that this season has meaning to beliefs other than yours hardly seems to be naked aggression. But I digress.

Not One Special Day, but a Season of Thoughtfulness

I would like to suggest that we think about this season not as a string of holidays and events.

Impeachment? Sure. How Many Counts? Ah, Well, Let’s See…

How Impeachment Goes Depends to Some Degree on the Number of Charges

Where Are We?

Anyone involved in prosecutions – or impeachments – can tell you. A critical decision is determining how many charges to file and for what offenses. There are a lot of factors to consider. It is not simply a question of what offenses have been committed.

I recognize that some people are still undecided about impeaching Donald Trump. Still others are determined that it is God’s Will that he not be impeached, ever, for anything. For the rest of us,

Three Numbers Will Decide Who Is the Democratic Nominee

As Democrats Move Toward Presidential Primary Season, Watch These Three Indicators


1 – Number of Candidates

Many of us have long said that the large number of candidates is not a bad thing – up to a point. We are approaching that point and still have, by my count, 18 (!!) candidates in the field. The first round of primaries and caucuses will thin that out quite a bit. For the good of all, it would be better if most of these candidates dropped out right about now.

At this point, for many to stay in the race is a waste of effort and a distraction for the electorate.

It’s a Free-Range Friday!

An Assortment of Odds and Ends for Your Weekend Reflections

Let’s Rummage Around a Bit

I am calling this post a Free-Range exercise, in part because that sounds better than the Messy Drawer Day. I have several short items for your review today.

Pretty well all of us have “that drawer.” You know, the one that seems to collect everything. For some reason, it seems to be a kitchen drawer most often. It has odds and ends from all over the house. You can never seem to find what you are looking for in that drawer.

Think Trump Respects the Military? Think Again

No President in History Has Done So Much to Harm the Military. And Trump is Just Beginning.


Our Military

The American military is an amazing institution. It’s ability to adapt, persevere, and win is nothing short of awesome. The people who are the armed forces and their families are among the best our nation has ever been privileged to have protecting us. If you watched the impeachment hearings last week, you got a taste of the ethos. The military and civil servants who testified made us all proud to be Americans.

But a military is always a force at risk.

A Funny Thing About This Republic

We are Linked in Ways That Make Us Count on Others to Do the Right Thing

Clever folks, Those Founding Fathers

They gave us a republic. That republic operates, for the most part, as a representative democracy. And that is where things get tricky.

Under our system, we all get to elect our own senators and representatives. They, hopefully, go to represent us and are accountable to us. In theory, at least. To make the point a bit more clearly, they are electorally responsible only to us. People in other states don’t get a vote on their continuing in office.

There, but for Grace, Go I

There are life lessons and humbling experiences to be found at homeless facilities


Like many of you, I spend some time at homeless shelters, food banks, and feeding facilities. A lot of people do not do so, but they think about such places at this time of year. Kitchens that feed the needy and shelters that house them can go all year hurting for volunteers. Then, they are inundated with offers to serve on Thanksgiving or around Christmas.

I confess to my own biases about such places.

I am grateful for those that open their doors to all – men,

Wait! How Many Candidates are Running for President?

Take a Deep Breath, Democrats. Time to Settle In

Hark! Who Is That Yonder?

Michael Bloomberg and Duvall Patrick find the current Democratic field lacking. But fortunately, they are willing to come to the rescue. I think not, but thanks for the offer. Oh, and former Attorney General Eric Holder is also resurrecting his potential campaign. At least this last one is more rumor than fact – for now. So, no further discussion here of Holder today.

Let me say at the outset that there is a lot to like about both of these other gentlemen.

Reflections on Veterans Day – For Vets and Non-Vets Alike

Occasions Like Veterans Day Offer a Much Needed Opportunity to Reflect

I had the good fortune to participate yesterday in a Veterans Day commemoration in our community.  I don’t often attend or provide part of the program at such gatherings. Yesterday reminded me why that is an error on my part. These are important reaffirmations of community on a very fundamental level.

I’d like to share with you a few observations that came out of the day for me that reflect the value of such gatherings. I hope they will encourage you to seek out such opportunities,

The Conversation on Medical Care for All Comes into Focus


We are Having Both the Right Conversation and the Wrong Conversation

Medical Care Front and Center

Among the more viable Democratic candidates for president, there are few differences on key issues. At least not in terms of priorities and goals. There are differences in how those goals can best be achieved. I start out with that statement to warn Democrats. Intertribal warfare over How should not lead to the What getting lost in the battle. As President Obama recently said, let’s not get too insistent on ideological purity.