Yes, I’ve been remiss in covering matters political for the last few months, including a relatively tame session of the South Dakota legislature. My apologies to those of you who wondered if I’d fallen off the face of the web. I would have liked to continue writing, but became preoccupied with a serious personal issue, one which made matters of policy and law take a seat all the way at the back of the bus.

I had not felt well for some time last fall but was unable to pinpoint the source. Then, not too long after my most recent post, I went in for some medical checkups. The result? A diagnosis of Stage 3 rectal cancer. A second opinion from the folks in Rochester, MN confirmed the original diagnosis. As a result, my world shrunk to a very small point while I and my wife attempted to get wrap our heads around all that this could mean for me and the family.

In the tumultuous months since that diagnosis, I have completed a course of chemoradiation and am now in a recovery period which will end with probable surgery. The care and prayers of friends and family have been essential in staying the course. I have known others who have dealt with similar medical issues, but it’s something else altogether to experience it oneself. I truly do not know how those without the caring support of others are able to make it through.

I’m feeling better today than I have since last fall, but life is also far busier than before. Many decisions remain to be made, with much time and effort to be expended in researching those decisions. Meanwhile, as I have time and inclination, I will attempt to revisit this space and add my thoughts to the big and important questions of the day.

And no, you may not have a picture of me wearing that dress, no matter what color you think it might be.

Bill Whittle brings his clear thinking and clear speaking to the topic of the FEC (Federal Election Commission) leader who knows far better than the rest of us what can and cannot be said about the dear government.

HT: Liberty’s Torch

Organization points out that well-known public individual is, well, making stuff up out of nothingness (and no, he’s not a writer of fiction). So, an apparent supporter of the public individual seeks to remove the Wikipedia entry in its entirety for the organization:

“You don’t burn books because they’re irrelevant. You burn books because you’re terrified that they’re not. You don’t muzzle people who have no audience. You muzzle people only when their voices are amplified far beyond your liking.”

Have you ever lost an argument? Perhaps even one where you came to understand that the preponderance of the evidence was against you and you belatedly realized that the only thing you had propping you up was sheer stubbornness? I’ve certainly been there. And I’m certainly not alone. To be human is to be on the losing side at one time or another.

Fortunately, we live in a world where we can make those who cause us discomfort to go away. OK, so maybe we don’t yet live in that world–but it’s not for want of wishing it to be so on the part of some. As John Hinderaker notes:

Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., the drug-addled son of the former Attorney General. Kennedy thinks it is a shame that he isn’t able to jail or execute the Koch brothers and other conservatives . . . .

Mr. Hinderaker then goes on to quote the scion on the topic of “global warming” and such:

“They are enjoying making themselves billionaires by impoverishing the rest of us. Do I think they should be in jail, I think they should be enjoying three hots and a cot at the Hague with all the other war criminals,” Kennedy declared.

“Do I think the Koch brothers should be tried for reckless endangerment? Absolutely, that is a criminal offence and they ought to be serving time for it,” he added.

Direct from the source. Sounds rather unequivocal to me. One of our unelected leaders wishes to, as noted elsewhere in the article, channel the totalitarian urges which characterized any number of dictators and their followers who determined that those with whom they disagreed should not be permitted to disagree freely. Simply put, get rid of those who think the dictator to be wrong, and then by definition the dictator is right.

Shouldn’t you diligently question the motives of anyone (whether you largely agree with their policies or not) who believes that imprisonment is an appropriate response to political disagreement?


“Hate speech” = “opinions we don’t agree with.”

Based on the date of my last post in this space, it would seem that I took a brief summer vacation. That was not my intent as such, but I confess to finding myself more than unusually busy over the last several weeks. I’ve been working on my 100+ year-old house, my 49-year-old tractor, and any number of other things to either prepare them for the coming winter or simply catch up on tasks which accumulated.

Since my break, I see that very little has changed in the world. We are still at war in the Middle East–and likely to open  up another front in that war if the current scuttlebutt is to be believed. We are also finding ourselves as a culture far more interested in the personal failings (though serious) of a football player and his wife than in the behavior of the IRS. I’d say par for the course, but it seems awfully close to mixing a metaphor. I also see that we are finally warming up the competitions for a number of the mid-term races across the country. Now that we have less than two months to go, we lack little more than a handful of October surprises before we come up on the big day.

Tomorrow marks an important anniversary of a tragic day in our history. Thirteen years ago, I was in my 20s and married without children. One of those things is still true. That aside, the world has changed, and largely not for the better, since we Americans were briefly shaken our of our first-world complacency by 19 men who used the tools of the 21st century in an attack whose end goal would seem to be to move us back to the 7th century.

To those who would see only those things which are not going well (and the list is long), don’t become discouraged. I am reminded of the following statement by James Whitcomb Riley:

The most essential factor is persistence – the determination never to allow your energy or enthusiasm to be dampened by the discouragement that must inevitably come.

Carry on.