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“If whiskey was his mistress, his true love was the West” — Will James, Ian Tyson
Only a few days ago, I was driving north after spending a quick few days in the mouth of a canyon on the Teton River fronting the Bob Marshall Wilderness Area. I was back in the open, rolling country and heading now toward the far northwest corner of Montana, the Kootenai National Forest and the Yaak River to spend some time with old friends who are permanently camped there, at least for the moment.
We are in the midst of a lot of proclaiming by the self-imagined politically astute about the possible coming electoral “resets” of 2022 and 2024. I try hard not to distract from those who have invested a lifetime of identifying with the political elites of either party while building a delusionary sense of how the interests and sensitivities of those patronizing parasites are the same as us of simpler minds and tastes, those who were intended to be the foundational thrust of this republic.
Elections, indeed, have to be won and seats changed. But as noted in the past, that has happened before but did little to alter the course we are now on. The institutions whose role it is to protect, foster, and grow our national purpose have been steadily corrupted and turned against both us and all that supports that national purpose. Winning seats and building “party” for its own sake is a part of what has gotten us here. A party is merely another institution within the framework of the nation to make it work how it was designed.
Not long ago I mentioned three areas in which all could have an impact and among them was education. At the time I made it clear that those three comprise an incomplete list of possibilities and that the mention of each one was not a very complete explanation. This won’t be complete either but it […]
I am told that there have been some comparisons concerning the name normally assigned to a charlatan of another century and some of our modern day misleaders as well as their gullible followers, who endanger us all. I understand that the wise writer who is struggling to point this out amid some administrative exercises was […]
Despite some strong intentions to make a couple of past Meet-Ups, I had never been able to include any among my varied and mostly unsophisticated social endeavors. I had made plans to attend at least two pervious large ones but ended up with conflicts each time. So, when Dr. Bastiat announced he would be in […]
When our Constitution was first crafted and released for ratification it was observed by one of elder statesmen of the period that it was designed for a nation of “wise and moral” people, none other could make it work. A short survey by any of us in our communities should make us grateful that it […]
We have spent some time now discussing in one way or another how dangerously close to the abyss our republic is. There is plenty of talk of a “red wave” and it is a possibility. But simple elections won’t turn our republic around and just having people with an “R” by their name won’t. That […]
I had just wandered through a generally so-so observation about patrician and plebeian elements in our present political situation. I was not sure that I had made my points clear enough for the normal pleb to grasp fully (we are generally too preoccupied with life’s minor distractions such as rent, food, and selecting the right brand of beer).
But one can always count on their betters to provide. So Peggy Noonan was kind enough to write a Wall Street Journal piece that explains it much better than I. She, of course, is an established member of the GOP Order of Patricians and her concern was about the unwashed plebs generally known as Trump voters. Hope among her fellow elitists was that more and more of this group would abandon the notion of the former president seeking the office again in 2024, that support for him would fade and he would pass from the public’s eye. As it is turning out, that simply isn’t happening. In fact, it appears to some that their numbers might even be growing.
When I last “spoke” here I tried to put emphasis on how battles and movements can turn at critical moments. There are always examples of hope for those with the will to engage the endless battle. But it is equally important to soberly realize how dark and dangerous this moment happens to be for our republic. History can be a demanding teacher. And in arrogance, we have either forgotten or disregarded its lessons for republics.
Being a simple critter, my understandings are simple. Some may well believe too much so. The “insights” I am about to stumble through might not be exact parallels, but they are close enough to make a point. Even if only a simple-minded one.
If there is indeed a “red wave” coming in November, it will be good to once again note that elections have certainly been won in the past but we still managed to get ourselves this dangerously close to “the abyss”. We have failed badly to take advantage of moments of apparent “conservative resurgence”, mostly by […]
We have spent the last several days with a seemingly constant string of violent acts of the sort that capture the national attention and create an atmosphere in which so many take the opportunistic stage to publicly display their “compassion” and “reasonableness”. These public pronouncements normally start and end with “doing something” but rarely target the most contributing elements of our social malfunction. My thoughts on the matter are hardly original. They are pretty straightforward and will seem less than simple-minded to those so warped up in new controls or who take too much joy in endless, directionless discussions.
There are many ways in which we have all contributed to the frayed cultural fabric that is the real reason for what now strikes at all our hearts. There is only time for mentioning one or two here. In less than a lifetime (at least for mossyhorns like myself), we have allowed our national, daily attention to be distracted from the basic elements of a character necessary for a people to govern themselves.
The case of Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health is generating both passion and distraction by the left as a draft of what appears to be a majority opinion has been leaked, breaking tradition as well as the security which helps to provide what is hoped to be a political-free decision (we could only hope). The heated rhetoric and delusional predictions of doom for the republic serve to distract from at least two central and vital factors in our health and direction as a free people. It is important to the left, their goals, and the path toward them that there is a complete lack of clarity concerning these two factors and their role in this matter.
The first is the Constitution itself. The draft is a clear, simple, and direct explanation of how our republic is supposed to work and what the real duty of the Court is. The Constitution is not with us to solve every human conflict and problem. Neither is the Court. The Constitution sets the framework by which a self-governing, diverse people can govern themselves, accounting for differences not just in opinions but in regional and cultural habits and needs. The Constitution shows a faith in the ultimate wisdom of the people in their own affairs.
There is no mention or intent concerning abortion in the Constitution. It is not a federal matter. The draft is constitutionally concise and correct.
Judging from the behavior of both, it seems that members of the two major political parties consider the 2022 elections will result in a GOP surge that could well bring Republican control of both Houses of Congress. This might seem to provide a moment of comfort for those established members of what one enlightened writer […]
About five Mother’s Days have passed since I wrote what I am about to repeat here. One month and eight days later, the last mother mentioned quietly finished a 14-year journey with a cruel trick of nature. But it was one that reinforced in those who watched it a belief in human strength, quiet but determined courage, and a dignity that only comes with the assurance of a divine hand. It became a daily lesson in the grace, faith, and inner peace needed to look squarely into a known and coming darkness, plan for it and then endure it in a way that would shine through the heaviest curtain that disease could drop around one.
The quote is from a hardened and seasoned cowman known for his direct and blunt views and ways. He was also a dedicated, driven researcher and probably the best historical writer of his time. These words finished a 12-page unpublished essay written for only family and close friends in memory of his departed wife. I suspect that all of us have in our heritage, both immediate and distant, a gentle hand that wove the fabric which clothed us in a “Coat of Many Colors” whose brightest threads were “immortal love, unshakeable faith and incorruptible character”.
I expected it to be snowing this morning when I woke up for good. I had driven into northeastern New Mexico by what was for me an old and one-time standard way for me to reach this retreat. It was well past dark when I began the roughly 60 miles through the canyons and mesas that follow the Cimarron back toward its origin along the rims and bank cuts of Johnson Mesa. It might have been too dark to see the colors of the “Spanish Shirts” below the rimrock that lays between Black Mesa and Cotton Mesa but they have been pretty well stamped into my mind for more than what is now a decade and half. Just the dark outline against a gray-banked sky is enough to bring life to a mental picture and touch someplace well below skin deep.
The predictors, who are rarely exactly right, had forecast snow by 5 a.m. and the skies seemed to confirm it. But when I stopped somewhere on the 16-mile stretch of gravel road that interrupts the “blacktop” to step out of the truck, there had been a break in the cloudy mass to the southeast where the stars were still clear and set in a coal-black sky. I know there are probably places in the world where the sky is blacker and the stars more sharply defined on a clear night than along this tract – but I can’t tell you where it is. I have no way to correctly count the number of times I have driven it in the darkest hour of the night and can promise you that there are few places better to stand with just your most important thoughts and miles of openness in all directions while you empty the bladder or refill the cup – or both.
We live in an affluent age. And, oddly enough, it has its challenges. I stumbled through a post about that at an earlier time here on these pages. One of those challenges is remembering that man has always had trying times – and always will have. Our greatest and most defining moments rarely come in comfort and ease but in struggle and crisis. It is then that we reveal what is most important to us, what sacrifices are to be made, and what for. Those sacrifices are things important to us given up for what has proven to be more important to our values at a time of crisis. What could be more defining?
It was said by some that when the Romans finally drove the nail into the coffin of the Carthaginians at the end of the third Punic War in 146 B.C., they not only destroyed Carthage but plowed salt into their fields to destroy even the soil that had fed them. I tend to take that tale with a “grain of salt” since Rome not only were taking over control of the trade routes of the Mediterranean but the fertile production of the Carthaginians’ north African territories as well.
I have watched with interest for announced developments concerning Henry Cuellar since it became known yesterday that the FBI had apparently searched his home and removed several items. As of yet, there has been no statement from the south Texas Congressman and only scant information from authorities.
I suspect that most outside of Texas have known little or nothing about Cuellar until recently when he has been in the public eye because of his positions about the effects that the flood of illegal immigration on his home congressional district, the 28th Texas Congressional District. But Cuellar has consistently been his own man for some time. He is still a Democrat but has been more in the mold of what some might have considered a traditional moderate Democrat of decades past. He has always openly favored a stronger border and does not toe the party line concerning the Democrat rite of abortion, as two examples. But he has been a solid win in the 28th since 2005, winning by 20 points in the 2020 general election.
I intend to briefly return to the subject of elections perhaps for my own clarity as much as anything else. Plus, that does seem to be on the mind of most Democrats lately. It is hardly the insistence on more election integrity and security that has caused a growing lack of faith in the voting […]
As I stated in my last words here, there is a pretty long list in front of me concerning who the actual enemies of “democracy” as well as our Constitution are and our clarity as who they are and what to do about it. I slept since then, if only briefly (real life still exists […]