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Friday, December 25, 2015


The emotional process of missing another is odd. There are a variety of ways we can feel it and a variety of ways the feeling can be triggered. More importantly, though, is the variety of different ways absence can be created.

The most common is the lack of physical presence. This absence is self explanatory and requires no analysis. This type of missing someone is alleviated when the two are reunited. Sadly, life is finite and our chances to be reunited are limited by the clutches of death.

More that mere physical absence, though, comes the emotional strain that occurs when someone is missed because a close bond has drifted, often on both ends, to a point where it is no longer recognizable for what it once was. When this happens and either party says they miss the other they are mistaken; they miss what the pair of who they both used to be shared.

Sometimes missing someone happens because one party changes significantly. This, too, is a scenario in which the party who is being missed is no longer available, does not even exist, to the party who is doing the missing.

A variation on the single party change is the revelation that someone whom you appreciated and liked is not really who they appeared to be. This type of missing often manifests with a form of resentment as the missed party for having misrepresented themselves but, often, it is our own fault for evaluating the other party incorrectly.

Furthering that trend becomes a large betrayal. The large betrayal, though, is one we inflict upon ourselves rather than one which is inflicted upon us. This happens when we build a fantasy of a person; design who we want them to be for us; and our design does not match who they really are. We miss not them, but who we imagined them to be; who we needed them to be; who we wanted them to be.

The last form of missing someone that is readily apparent to me is the form that is less severe than jealousy but is, in reality, the same. This is the missing we feel when we see someone is exactly who and what we want but they are that for someone other than ourselves. We miss the person we cannot have and, thus, resent the person and scenario we have instead.

I miss lots of people.
I miss people in all of these categories.

I wish I could stop missing people in the worst of the categories and be present in the lives of the people whose presence would alleviate missing them.
Mostly, though, I wish I could erase the people who I miss because of who I thought they were..... I wish I could erase who I thought they were and see them for who they are from the start.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Liberalism vs Conservatism

I appreciate reasonable conservatives.
I appreciate reasonable liberals.
I appreciate reasonable people.

When people cease being reasonable I get angry which makes me unreasonable. I dislike being unreasonable.

The United States of America is NOT a Christian nation; it's a secular nation. Freedom of and freedom from religion. The state is, by law, supposed to be completely atheist.

The country was founded on very old ideas that were considered ridiculous by the ruling people of Europe when the US was made. Democracy and a representative Republic are both VERY liberal ideas.

The base laws of this country are a liberal experiment.

The Amendment process was designed with the idea that times change and, therefore, the core foundation of the government may require updates. THAT is a liberal idea that puts forth the idea of continuing change; which is a liberal idea.

With all of that, though, there are core concepts of the far left that over-step the foundational ideas of freedom and liberty. These ideas almost invariably slide into the realm of protecting the overall good at the expense of the individual; what makes them over-stepping is when they are unsustainable.

"To promote the general welfare" is an important liberal idea, and exact passage, in the core foundational documents that can sometimes be at odds with the core ideas of personal liberty.

The reality, though, is that we cannot protect the needs of the many by sacrificing the needs of the few in an unsustainable manner. That is no better than protecting the needs of the few at the expense of the many.
Reasonable Conservatives can see the benefits of protecting the many enough to allow them to all be individual contributors. The reasonable Liberals can see the needs of the individuals and discern where the burden placed on the individuals exceeds the ability of contributors to contribute.
I look at the current political climate and I see a splintering of ideals. I see the growing trend of fright-based neoconservatism that uses the language of the country's foundation in a warped and perverted manner to put forth an agenda of fear and hatred and exclusion rather than the core idea of "all men are created equal."
I want the conservative party that stood for minimalist government where all the government served a purpose that benefitted all. A conservative party that celebrates freedom for all. A party that supports freedom of, and from, religion such that it embraces ALL people from all beliefs. I want the conservative party that examines the bottom-line impact of social programs and implements them when the "safety net" has a net financial benefit to society
- Tiny homes for the homeless rather than shelter? It saves money per person? DO IT.

- Decriminalizing drugs decreases the number of users and abusers AND reduces violent crime AND reduces prison expenses? DO IT.

- Spending more on education shows economic growth and a reduction in prison expenses? DO IT.

- Keeping people from losing their homes when they have an economic hardship prevents them from having to use many more social services and allows them to become a productive member of the economy again faster? DO IT.

- We suspect people on social assistance are abusing the program in mass numbers and using the money to buy drugs so we want to test them. DO IT.......

- Umm. we found that 2% of the people tested actually had drugs in their system and the testing program costs significantly more than eliminating those benefits.... STOP IT.

- Rehab programs allow people to get off drugs and remain functional members of the economy? FUND THEM

- Tax funded healthcare costs less per capita than our current system and has superior performance on a maintenance level of care in every country it is used in? DO IT.

- Banking regulations being lifted causes a siphon that pulls capital out of the middle and lower classes and causes the consumer economy to shrink on a per-person-hour basis? BRING BACK THE REGS.

- Making free and compulsory high schools boosted the economy overall and we need college educations in today's world to move forward? MAKE IT HAPPEN.

- Kids are graduating college with 5-10 years' pay in school debt, crippling their ability to make a living and contribute to the economy? DON'T MAKE IT HAPPEN LIKE THAT, DO BETTER

- Guns are a major drain on the economy? LET'S WORK TO REDUCE GUN VIOLENCE

All of these ideas are NOT liberal when examined from a fiscal view. EVERY idea, when examined fiscally and without regard to whether or not someone is going to "get away with it" can be examined from the VERY conservative view of "show me the data."

When we make data-driven policies and laws we make progress that is responsible. We make the lives better for everyone. We follow the core ideas of making "the American Dream" a reality for everyone. Data-driven ideas and policies are how we temper our ethics, morality, and desire to help against our collective ability to actually help.

I'm glad that most of my friends get this (even when we tend to bicker over some of the specific points); I wish EVERYONE did.

SOME references on these topics:

Tiny Homes:

Decriminalizing drugs:

Education prevents prison:

Keeping people in their homes:

Welfare drug testing:
"The statistics show that applicants actually test positive at a lower rate than the drug use of the general population. "

Rehab to cut prison costs:

Health care expenditures:

Banking regulations:

Creating public high schools improved the economy:
Citation Needed

College education is needed:

College debt is crippling:

Cost of gun crime:

I AM the Credible Hulk