Monday, February 6, 2017

Populists and Plutocrats Unite!

I was in a 7-Eleven last Sunday morning for a restorative post-jog donut, when a big, late-middle-aged man with a MAGA hat and a matching red face came in. He grabbed a few tall-boys and a bag of ice, and made his way to the check-out line. To my reasonably educated eye (and nose) those particular tall-boys weren't going to be the first of the day.

In all the kaleidoscope of images from the first two weeks of Trump's reign, there is something about this man that I cannot get out of my head. To say he seemed out of place in my 83%-for-Hillary Congressional District would be an understatement—but there he was. Wow—a perfect specimen of a stereotypical Trump voter as if drawn in an editorial cartoon! Obviously, I wasn't actually going to interact with him, but this rara avis had somehow wandered into my cloistered neck of the woods and even allowed himself to helped by the Pakistani staff in the store. 

Monday, January 9, 2017

Donald and Vlad Inherit the Earth

The news of the day is that Russian President Vladimir Putin will be a guest of honor at Donald Trump's Inauguration. He will be seated between Speaker Ryan and Senate Majority Leader McConnell, and there are indications from inside the Trump transition team that the President Elect has asked Putin to give a second invocation, reportedly on a theme inspired by Matthew 5:5, to mark the friendship of two great nations.

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

The Wreck Of The Hillary C.

The legend lives on from Foggy Bottom down
Of the big swamp they call Washingtoonie
The swamp, it is said, never gives up her dead
When the skies of November turn gloomy
With a load of mail thirty-thousand or more
Than the Hillary C weighed empty
And a Big Dog, it’s true, with a bone to be chewed
But the gales of November came early

The ship was the pride of the Democratic side
Bathed in blue from a mill in Wisconsin
Vanquished, it had, Chafee, Marty and Jim
Barely singed by some grapeshot from Bernie
It grimaced and mocked as the other boat rocked
When it left fully loaded from Cleveland
Yet later that month when the ship's bell rang
Could it be a north wind they'd been feelin'?

Began but a whisper, ghostly Slavic a sound
Lush balalaikas seemed to be strumming
But onward they plowed, the captain so proud
Glass ceiling, she pledged, it’s a-tumbling
Yet a sulfurous haze in the Autumn days
T’was darkness, a seer said, and foreboding,
So passion escaped and love had to wait
As the gales of November came courting.

We gathered on deck, stared mutely and numb
First Tar-heels, Ohio, the Cheeseheads
Dusk turned to dark, out sprang a groan
No Sunshine, no Motown, or Keystone,
The captain cried out that survival’s in doubt
And the good ship and crew was in peril
And later that night as her lights lost their sight
The wreck of the Hillary C. became final

Does anyone know where the love of God goes
When agony turns hours to years?
Pundits all say she’d have made Ches-peake Bay
But for Wiki, and Vladi, and Comey
Fate’s a cruel mistress, yet hindsight is plain
The helmsman’s myopia looming
And all that remains is the loser’s refrain
Why didn’t I see that one coming?

Lake Huron’s drum rolls, Superior sings
Midwest graveyard’s cold tune of yearning
Old Michigan steams of politico’s dreams
Thirst for office unquenched but still burning
And farther below, Lake Ontario
Takes in what Erie can send her
Blind pride will go as all mariners know
When the gales of November remembered

In musty old halls in New York they prayed
In chapels in Javits and Brooklyn
The church bell chimed 'til it rang one-thousand times
For each dream on the Hillary Clinton
The legend lives on from Foggy Bottom on down
Of the big swamp they call Washingtoonie
The swamp, it’s said, never gives up her dead
When the gales of November come early.

Michael Liss (Moderate Moderator)