October 31st

I just spent Saturday with Ealain celebrating her 35th birthday and we had a lot of fun. Most of the afternoon was spent with Gypsy Jill, getting a tattoo. Some time back I did a cutting on her of an "Om" symbol [to the get this Om symbol on your computer screen, open MS Word and key in backslash ( \ ) in Wingdings font... unfortunately, it won't work in my composing software for my journal]. Over the same area where I did the cutting, the middle of Ealain's belly, Jill has now placed the Om. It is beautifully done in the style of classic Japanese brushwork. Jill is a marvelous person and a great artist and energy worker, and I've begun discussing my next tattoo with her as well.

Today I showed how much I loved my son, by going with him when he asked, "Dad, could you take me to CostCo?" He and his partner and their child were in a car struck by another car that ran a red light, and it's taking forever for them to get a settlement and then a replacement car. So, I ran him to CostCo and Safeway and home on the busiest day of the week there. All about me were shopping fools and I wasn't allowed to remove them from my path. Somehow I allowed them all to survive and deposited #1 Son at home and got home myself without further damage.

Ealain is on her way over to spend the night. Our schedules are quite different, and we are both treasuring the time we are able to spend together, whether it's at her place or mine. It's different for me, wanting to think in terms of another. Wanting to think of two people together. My last relationship, my partner had a husband, and I was a distant secondary. She ended up leaving both he and I for another guy. My last relationship before that, which lasted for several years, was a woman who lived with her wife, and I was an afterthought that today she denies. This is the first time in probably twenty-some years where I was with someone where she and I are both primary with each other. We both want that, prefer that, and tell the others that we play with that that's a basic, an axiom. This love of each other, unconditional and accepting, is a rich treasure for me at this point in my life. I make offerings of thanks every day for it.

Well... actually, she isn't on her way over. She just called and asked me to come pick her up. On a cold night. When I was already warm and toasty in my sweat pants and slippers. Rats. I did say 'unconditional love', didn't I. I'll be back in a few minutes....


Let's talk about some sad, cold, and tangible realities here.

Tuesday morning is election day here in the US.

I personally consider this the most crucial election in many many years.

There is a man in the White House who lost the popular vote four years ago, who got into the White House by a combination of family connections & wealth, a lot of dirty tricks at the local levels, and a Supreme Court beholding to his family.

You know the litany of faults and complaints. He had terrible grades and mediocre SATs and was jumped ahead of others to get into Yale and to get into and through his MBA program. He was pointedly jumped over many others on the waiting list to get into the Texas Air National Guard during the Viet Nam war, and then bailed out when they started introducing drug checks for pilots. He owned the Texas Rangers and traded Sammy Sosa away. He was a flat out loser at every business venture his family propped him into, but kept on getting put into places where he could help out friends. The man he appointed for Attorney General was a choice so poor that the fellow had lost his last election to a dead man, and a man so blindly religiously preoccupied that he has draped curtains over classical art in the Department of Justice so he won't have to view a bronze breast on a statue. He is still in a place to help out his millionaire friends and is still doing all he can to help his friends to the tune of millions of dollars that ordinary people like you and I have to pay. Forget about any hope of "the President has oil company experience so he will fight to keep our oil prices down" - oil prices have soared and his friends have benefitted such that many Americans can't afford to take a Sunday drive in the country - unless they are Halliburton stockholders.

Since his election he has done more to trample on the Bill of Rights and the Constitution, and the civil rights of individuals than any domestic leader in history. In retrospect the actions of his administration will be judged and found comparable to some of the most evil despots in history, and is already viewed as such by many nations which we counted as friends until he began to do the terrible things he has done.

He has forced a war with a nation that never attacked us and has abandoned the hunt for the man who did. He has forced a war over the wishes of the United Nations. He has forced a war over the wishes of a majority of his countrymen. In doing so he has sent over 1000 American men and women to their deaths. He has been responsible for the wounding of over 8000 American men and women, easily two thirds of whom were wounded after he declared the war won. The wounded veterans who have returned to the US have been treated shabbily, in particular the Reservists and National Guard who make up close to half the force in Iraq currently. Conservative estimates in professional medical journals put the civilian deaths in Iraq between 100,000 and 200,000. That's civilian men, women, and many many children.

As an aside, I visit this site every week or two, to spend time with those who have died. To show them respect. To learn about them, who they are, where they've come from, who they've left behind. In many cases - to see their smiling faces as they were before war tore them apart. And I go to apologize, as I never ever have asked that they die in my name. I'm an old soldier who spent many years in uniform, and I can't tell you how it makes me cry to see these young soldiers wasted.

He has endorsed a constitutional amendment to take away civil rights from sexual minorities. He hasn't pushed for a constitutional amendment to help ensure that citizens have civil rights - instead his misnamed Patriot Act has taken away the civil rights of many and he is pushing to do more.

He entered office with a budget surplus. He has not vetoed a bill. None. He has plunged our nation into a deficit that will require my grandchildren to pay it off.

I ask all who read this to please go to the polls on Tuesday and vote. And if you normally vote for a third party candidate as a token voice for or against an issue, or against the two party system, please consider how few votes allowed this terrible terrible man to assume office and please make your vote count this time.

Our civil rights cannot stand another four years of this man and the cronies behind him.

Thank you for helping me and all decent minded people to help make this nation a better place again.

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