5.12.2022 – but the common thing

but the common thing
decision opening up
strive toward the wind

Based on the poem, Heron Rises From The Dark, Summer Pond, by Mary Oliver.

Again, a big thank you to my sister Lisa, to telling me about Ms. Oliver.

(Feel free to touch base and tell me what to read.)

For me, herons, seeing a heron, has been and still is a harbinger of good fortune, a good omen.

Not that you saw herons all that often in West Michigan where I grew up but maybe that was part of it.

And not that I really believe in good omens but more in line that seeing one made me feel that, surely, this wasn’t as black a world as I made it out to be.

And I have had enough Latin and roman history to not think about omens and not smile inwardly.

It is in the movie Spartacus that Roman Senator Sempronius Gracchus, played by Charles Laughton, walks out of the Senate and buys a pigeon saying “Let’s make a good old-fashioned sacrifice.

Still I cannot see a heron and somehow, not feel better.

I also cannot see a heron that I do not think of the time that Doug, my college roommate, and I were driving back to Ann Arbor, Michigan on I-96 and a heron dove out of the sky and swooped low, just above the median between the two sides of the freeway in a glide..

As I remember it, we were going about 60 miles an hour.

This was way back in the ‘Drive 55’ era and it took forever to get to Ann Arbor.

The heron passed us.

Here is the poem.

Heron Rises From The Dark, Summer Pond by Mary Oliver.

So heavy
is the long-necked, long-bodied heron,
always it is a surprise
when her smoke-colored wings

open
and she turns
from the thick water,
from the black sticks

of the summer pond,
and slowly
rises into the air
and is gone.

Then, not for the first or the last time,
I take the deep breath
of happiness, and I think
how unlikely it is

that death is a hole in the ground,
how improbable
that ascension is not possible,
though everything seems so inert, so nailed

back into itself —
the muskrat and his lumpy lodge,
the turtle,
the fallen gate.

And especially it is wonderful
that the summers are long
and the ponds so dark and so many,
and therefore it isn’t a miracle

but the common thing,
this decision,
this trailing of the long legs in the water,
this opening up of the heavy body

into a new life: see how the sudden
gray-blue sheets of her wings
strive toward the wind; see how the clasp of nothing
takes her in.

takes her in.

I took this photo of a heron on a dock on Pinckney Island in South Carolina during a day of dolphin counting.

The heron stood on the post with a look that told me I was standing on a dock that the heron owned and my presence wasn’t much more than tolerated.

There are a lot more heron’s down here than I have ever seen in my life.

Looking at the these birds standing still and I think how could anyone have made a bird like this?

Looking at these birds in flight and I think, how else could anyone have made a bird like this?

The phrase “have been fearfully and wonderfully made” from the book of Psalms comes to mind.

– – – – – – –

Readers of this blog may remember that from time to time I struggle with the weight of effort of producing a daily Haiku and any thoughts I may have about the words and time that went in the Haiku that day.

This daily schedule of missing a day can bring on a personal mental paralysis wherein writing these entries becomes impossible.

I learned to deal with this by not dealing with it and let it go.

Then when I look at my register of entries and see blank days with no post, I will grab a topic or book or poem for a source and produce a series of Haiku to fill in those blank dates.

This is one of the great benefits of this effort being my blog and my blog, my rules.

It IS cricket because I say it is.

It is ‘according to Hoyle’ because I say it is.

Thus I have this series of haiku based on the poem ‘Heron Rises From The Dark, Summer Pond‘ by Mary Oliver.

5.11.2022 – algorithmic tools

algorithmic tools
efficiency, saving costs
it is not foolproof

Adapted from this paragraph:

Yet it is not foolproof. One of the most consequential findings comes from Harvard Business School professor Joe Fuller, whose team surveyed more than 2,250 business leaders in the US, UK and Germany. Their motives for using algorithmic tools were efficiency and saving costs. Yet 88% of executives said that they know their tools reject qualified candidates.

In the article, Finding it hard to get a new job? Robot recruiters might be to blame by by Hilke Schellmann in todays Guardian.

Ms. Schellmann, a journalism professor at New York University and a freelance reporter covering artificial intelligence, writes that:

Martin Burch had been working for the Wall Street Journal and its parent company Dow Jones for a few years and was looking for new opportunities. One Sunday in May 2021, he applied for a data analyst position at Bloomberg in London that looked like the perfect fit. He received an immediate response, asking him to take a digital assessment.

It was strange. The assessment showed him different shapes and asked him to figure out the pattern. He started feeling incredulous. “Shouldn’t we be testing my abilities on the job?” he asked himself.

The next day, a Monday, which happened to be a public holiday in the UK, he got a rejection email. He decided to email a recruiter at Bloomberg. Maybe the company made a mistake?

What Burch discovered offers insight into a larger phenomenon that is baffling experts: while there are record level job openings in both the UK and in the US, why do many people still have to apply to sometimes hundreds of jobs, even in sought-after fields like software development, while many companies complain they can’t find the right talent?

A recruiter at Bloomberg replied: “I can see that your application was rejected due to not meeting our benchmark in the Plum assessment that you completed. Unfortunately on that basis we are not able to take your application any further.” Burch felt stunned that he had indeed been rejected by a piece of code.

Ms. Schellmann stated that, “Some experts argue that algorithms and artificial intelligence now used extensively in hiring are playing a role. This is a huge shift, because until relatively recently, most hiring managers would handle applications and resumes themselves. Yet recent findings have shown that some of these new tools discriminate against women and use criteria unrelated to work to “predict” job success.”

Burch felt stunned.

He had indeed been rejected by a piece of code.

Much like baseball, you now get hired by the numbers, not whether or not you can hit the curve.

Yet it is not foolproof. 

Gee, what a surprise.

5.10.2022 – So heavy is the

So heavy is the
long-necked long-bodied heron
always a surprise

Based on the poem, Heron Rises From The Dark, Summer Pond, by Mary Oliver.

Again, a big thank you to my sister Lisa, to telling me about Ms. Oliver.

Feel free to touch base and tell me what to read.

For me, herons, seeing a heron, has been and still is a harbinger of good fortune, a good omen.

Not that you saw herons all that often in West Michigan where I grew up but maybe that was part of it.

And not that I really believe in good omens but more in line that seeing one made me feel that, surely, this wasn’t as black a world as I made it out to be.

And I have had enough Latin and roman history to not think about omens and not smile inwardly.

It is in the movie Spartacus that Roman Senator Sempronius Gracchus, played by Charles Laughton, walks out of the Senate and buys a pigeon saying “Let’s make a good old-fashioned sacrifice.

Still I cannot see a heron and somehow, not feel better.

I also cannot see a heron that I do not think of the time that Doug, my college roommate, and I were driving back to Ann Arbor, Michigan on I-96 and a heron dove out of the sky and swooped low, just above the median between the two sides of the freeway in a glide..

As I remember it, we were going about 60 miles an hour.

This was way back in the ‘Drive 55’ era and it took forever to get to Ann Arbor.

The heron passed us.

Here is the poem.

Heron Rises From The Dark, Summer Pond by Mary Oliver.

So heavy
is the long-necked, long-bodied heron,
always it is a surprise
when her smoke-colored wings

open
and she turns
from the thick water,
from the black sticks

of the summer pond,
and slowly
rises into the air
and is gone.

Then, not for the first or the last time,
I take the deep breath
of happiness, and I think
how unlikely it is

that death is a hole in the ground,
how improbable
that ascension is not possible,
though everything seems so inert, so nailed

back into itself–
the muskrat and his lumpy lodge,
the turtle,
the fallen gate.

And especially it is wonderful
that the summers are long
and the ponds so dark and so many,
and therefore it isn’t a miracle

but the common thing,
this decision,
this trailing of the long legs in the water,
this opening up of the heavy body

into a new life: see how the sudden
gray-blue sheets of her wings
strive toward the wind; see how the clasp of nothing
takes her in.

So heavy
is the long-necked, long-bodied heron,
always it is a surprise
when her smoke-colored wings

open
and she turns
from the thick water,
from the black sticks

of the summer pond,
and slowly
rises into the air
and is gone.

Then, not for the first or the last time,
I take the deep breath
of happiness, and I think
how unlikely it is

that death is a hole in the ground,
how improbable
that ascension is not possible,
though everything seems so inert, so nailed

back into itself–
the muskrat and his lumpy lodge,
the turtle,
the fallen gate.

And especially it is wonderful
that the summers are long
and the ponds so dark and so many,
and therefore it isn’t a miracle

but the common thing,
this decision,
this trailing of the long legs in the water,
this opening up of the heavy body

into a new life: see how the sudden
gray-blue sheets of her wings
strive toward the wind; see how the clasp of nothing
takes her in.

– – – – – – –

Readers of this blog may remember that from time to time I struggle with the weight of effort of producing a daily Haiku and any thoughts I may have about the words and time that went in the Haiku that day.

This daily schedule of missing a day can bring on a personal mental paralysis wherein writing these entries becomes impossible.

I learned to deal with this by not dealing with it and let it go.

Then when I look at my register of entries and see blank days with no post, I will grab a topic or book or poem for a source and produce a series of Haiku to fill in those blank dates.

This is one of the great benefits of this effort being my blog and my blog, my rules.

It IS cricket because I say it is.

It is ‘according to Hoyle’ because I say it is.

Thus I have this series of haiku based on the poem ‘Heron Rises From The Dark, Summer Pond‘ by Mary Oliver.

5.9.2022 – children screaming with

children screaming with
delight link generations
indestructible

Adapted from a paragraph in the EB White essay, Once More to the Lake.

Mr. White wrote: Afterward the calm, the rain steadily rustling in the calm lake, the return of light and hope and spirits, and the campers running out in joy and relief to go swimming in the rain, their bright cries perpetuating the deathless joke about how they were getting simply drenched, and the children screaming with delight at the new sensation of bathing in the rain, and the joke about getting drenched linking the generations in a strong indestructible chain.

My grand daughter was in town for a short visit and we were only able to squeeze in a quick trip to the beach.

The weather did not cooperate and instead of sunshine, sand and surf, we had gray skies and gray waves.

For May along the coast, the temperate was cool and the water was warmer than then air.

My grand daughter didn’t care and no matter how much we explained the time crunch and the uninviting weather, she was determined to see the water.

We walked out together along the walkways through the swamps.

She kept an eye out for alligators.

We got to the sand and got out of our shoes and barefooted, we walked down to the water.

With your toes in the Atlantic Ocean, I like to say, you have the entire country in back of you all the way to the Pacific.

My grand daughter didn’t mention the gray sky.

My grand daughter didn’t mention the gray waves.

My grand daughter didn’t mention that is was somewhat cool if not cold there on the beach.

She took my hand and walked into the water and wave after wave washed over our feet.

The occasion bigger wave would splash in and she would grab my arm and jump and I would lift her out of the way and set her back down.

And she would scream with delight.

Standing there, holding my hand, she looked out at the horizon.

“Poppa,” she said, “I love the ocean.”

5.8.2022 – and especially

and especially
it is wonderful that the
summers so are long

Based on the poem, Heron Rises From The Dark, Summer Pond, by Mary Oliver.

Again, a big thank you to my sister Lisa, to telling me about Ms. Oliver.

Feel free to touch base and tell me what to read.

For me, herons, seeing a heron, has been and still is a harbinger of good fortune, a good omen.

Not that you saw herons all that often in West Michigan where I grew up but maybe that was part of it.

And not that I really believe in good omens but more in line that seeing one made me feel that, surely, this wasn’t as black a world as I made it out to be.

And I have had enough Latin and roman history to not think about omens and not smile inwardly.

It is in the movie Spartacus that Roman Senator Sempronius Gracchus, played by Charles Laughton, walks out of the Senate and buys a pigeon saying “Let’s make a good old-fashioned sacrifice.

Still I cannot see a heron and somehow, not feel better.

I also cannot see a heron that I do not think of the time that Doug, my college roommate, and I were driving back to Ann Arbor, Michigan on I-96 and a heron dove out of the sky and swooped low, just above the median between the two sides of the freeway in a glide..

As I remember it, we were going about 60 miles an hour.

This was way back in the ‘Drive 55’ era and it took forever to get to Ann Arbor.

The heron passed us.

Here is the poem.

Heron Rises From The Dark, Summer Pond by Mary Oliver.

So heavy
is the long-necked, long-bodied heron,
always it is a surprise
when her smoke-colored wings

open
and she turns
from the thick water,
from the black sticks

of the summer pond,
and slowly
rises into the air
and is gone.

Then, not for the first or the last time,
I take the deep breath
of happiness, and I think
how unlikely it is

that death is a hole in the ground,
how improbable
that ascension is not possible,
though everything seems so inert, so nailed

back into itself–
the muskrat and his lumpy lodge,
the turtle,
the fallen gate.

And especially it is wonderful
that the summers are long
and the ponds so dark and so many,
and therefore it isn’t a miracle

but the common thing,
this decision,
this trailing of the long legs in the water,
this opening up of the heavy body

into a new life: see how the sudden
gray-blue sheets of her wings
strive toward the wind; see how the clasp of nothing
takes her in.

So heavy
is the long-necked, long-bodied heron,
always it is a surprise
when her smoke-colored wings

open
and she turns
from the thick water,
from the black sticks

of the summer pond,
and slowly
rises into the air
and is gone.

Then, not for the first or the last time,
I take the deep breath
of happiness, and I think
how unlikely it is

that death is a hole in the ground,
how improbable
that ascension is not possible,
though everything seems so inert, so nailed

back into itself–
the muskrat and his lumpy lodge,
the turtle,
the fallen gate.

And especially it is wonderful
that the summers are long
and the ponds so dark and so many,
and therefore it isn’t a miracle

but the common thing,
this decision,
this trailing of the long legs in the water,
this opening up of the heavy body

into a new life: see how the sudden
gray-blue sheets of her wings
strive toward the wind; see how the clasp of nothing
takes her in.

– – – – – – –

Readers of this blog may remember that from time to time I struggle with the weight of effort of producing a daily Haiku and any thoughts I may have about the words and time that went in the Haiku that day.

This daily schedule of missing a day can bring on a personal mental paralysis wherein writing these entries becomes impossible.

I learned to deal with this by not dealing with it and let it go.

Then when I look at my register of entries and see blank days with no post, I will grab a topic or book or poem for a source and produce a series of Haiku to fill in those blank dates.

This is one of the great benefits of this effort being my blog and my blog, my rules.

It IS cricket because I say it is.

It is ‘according to Hoyle’ because I say it is.

Thus I have this series of haiku based on the poem ‘Heron Rises From The Dark, Summer Pond‘ by Mary Oliver.

5.7.2022 – that I last worked

that I last worked
one day, one afternoon, hours
all that I needed

It was in the spring of 1977 I think that I last really worked.

Worked really hard.

I may have been Kentucky Derby day and it stands out in my mind that way.

My Mom had a friend who, with her husband, was building a house.

Not working with a developer to pick out door knobs and windows, but doing as much of the actual construction as they could do themselves.

These people had purchased a lot in our neighborhood down on Gilpin St. and the basement had been dug out.

What they had so far was this big pit right out Mike Mulligan and his steam shovel.

They arranged for frames to be installed and concrete to be poured, but first the bottom of the pit had to be leveled out.

My Mom’s friend told my Mom that they needed a couple of strong boys to get down in the pit and shovel some dirt around from a few high places over to a few low places.

Just level it out.

My Mom may not have thought that she had some strong boys but she knew she had some boys who were pretty much, desperately lazy.

And the story moved my Mom’s heart, which was easy to do, she had a big heart, and the next thing that happened was that my brothers Pete and Steve and I were volunteered to spend a spring Saturday doing some shoveling.

I think we were told the night before that we had volunteered.

We were instructed to show up around noon which we did and we met the feller whose house it was that was being built.

He greeted us and pointed out his friend, James, who had a surveyors transit set up.

He then led us over to the side of the pit where there was a ladder and we climbed down into the pit.

You know how the mud smells at a construction sight?

That is what it smelled like.

The pit was a construction site and it stunk.

The guy picked up this long pole with had some black type wrapped around near the top.

He would set the end of the pole on the ground and James would site it with his transit and looking at the piece of black tape, announce “down 6 inches” or “up 3 inches.”

The guy would the point at spot and say we got to lower this area or we got to fill in this area.

After giving us the general layout, he pointed out shovels and told us to get to work.

We three boys looked at each other.

We were worried.

We were more than worried.

We got past worried when we climbed down into the pit.

This looked like real work.

The first thing my brother Pete did was to nudge me with an elbow and say, “Notice that JAMES isn’t coming down here.”

We had noticed that.

James was smart.

We also noticed that what were standing on wasn’t sand and it wasn’t dirt, it was clay.

Baked clay.

It was more like solid rock.

I picked up a shovel and let the the handle slide through my fingers to drop the point of the spade against the surface.

The shovel bounced back.

Pete picked up a shovel and tried to drive it into the clay and nothing happened.

Stevie just watched.

I took the shovel in both hands and chopped with against the surface.

Pete took his shovel and pushed the point down with one foot and managed to get the point down under the surface.

He then levered the shovel over and popped off a chunk of light brown clay.

Pete straightened up and says, “I’m done.”

The guy and that James feller both laughed.

Then they left.

I think Pete was serious but there we were.

I pushed harder and was able to the get my shovel into the clay and found out something else.

The hard clay was only about 2 or 3 inches thick.

Once you got through that 2 or 3 inched layer of hard clay, underneath was a bottomless quagmire of construction site muck.

I brought up a shovel full of that stuff and tossed it one side.

I looked at my brothers.

My brothers looked at me.

I am not sure what happened next but I remember we stayed the rest of the afternoon down in that pit.

I have this vague memory of walking around the floor of the pit, banging my shovel down, searching for softer places to dig but nothing more distinct than that.

They guy building the house and James had left and we kept at it.

None of us had a watch on so all we could do was make a guess at the time by watching the sun and shadows.

And we worked.

We didn’t suffer in silence but we kept at it.

Not sure how much of an improvement we made, but we tried.

Maybe a battalion of US Army Corps of Engineers with dynamite could have done better, but with who we were and what we had and what we were doing, we tried.

In my memory, the shadows along one side of the pit were getting deep and dark when the guy came back and called down to us that we were done.

We put the shovels in a corner and climbed up and out.

The guys wife had pulled up to the building site and in the trunk of her car was a cooler.

The cooler was filled with ice and Coca-Cola.

She had in her hands these giant Styrofoam cups that she filled first with ice and then Coke.

Never again has icy cold Coke been more icy cold and more welcome and more refreshing than those Cokes.

The guy thanked us and gave us each a $10 bill.

Never again did I feel such satisfaction from earning $10.

I can say that as I never again worked so hard in my life.

There is only so much satisfaction that you can get out of satisfaction.

Jim Harrison once wrote something along the line that society has yet to understand and label work done mentally, as hard work.

I support that concept.

On the other hand . . .

There is exhaustion.

There is mental exhaustion.

And there is physical exhaustion.

There is no substitute for hard work.

And I have worked hard to avoid it ever since that afternoon in the pit.

There is a family legend about my Dad.

My Grandfather was a Dentist.

When my Dad graduated from Grand Rapids Creston High School in 1936, my Grand Father, according to the legend, told my Dad that he would buy him a farm or send him to Dental School.

This side of the family were farmers who had emigrated from the Netherlands and still lived and farmed in the Jamestown area of Ottawa County, Michigan.

My Dad was then sent out to spend a week working on some relatives’ farm.

According to the legend, after that week, my Dad came home and asked when Dental School started.

I had thought about being a Dentist then I met a class called organic chemistry.

I had planned on being a history teacher.

I fell into a career of website design and management.

But when I climbed out of that put in 1977, all I wanted to know was, when did school start?

5.6.2022 – your freedom to read

your freedom to read
to determine what you read
independently

Where to start?

A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step but where to begin?

Mr. Rodgers and Mr. Hammerstein said that we should, “Start at the Very Beginning, a Very Good Place to Start.”

The Bible says, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” (John 1:1 NIV)

That’s where it starts.

In the beginning was the word.

The word comes to us in a book.

That is where is starts.

A Book.

Books are there from the beginning.

Books are at the core.

For me, books are the answer.

For some, books are the problem.

And that shakes me to the core.

Book burning and it’s little brother, book banning, are for me, black and white, wrong vs. right.

Mr. Lincoln’s “eternal struggle between right and wrong” would embody books in my book.

The Nashville Public Library is working to raise awareness of recent book banning efforts by issuing a library card that proclaims, “I READ BANNED BOOKS.”

The press release from the NPL quotes Director Kent Oliver, saying, “I want Nashvillians to know: Nashville Public Library will always respect your Freedom to Read – to independently determine what you read, and don’t read, and to exercise your role in determining what your children read.

While I would have been happier had Mr. Kent not split an infinitive ( and I think to determine, independently, is more effective), I am very happy that the NPL is taking a stand and I would be happy to get the bright yellow card.

But the press release that the NPL was also one of the scariest and saddest statements that I have read recently.

Making the point for public support against book banning, the Nashville Public Library pointed out that:

Since the American Library Association began tracking challenges against books in the 1980s, the organization has recorded thousands of challenges made in cities across the U.S.

In contrast, 71% of readers oppose efforts to remove books from their local public libraries, according to an ALA survey of 1,000 voters and 472 parents of public-school children.

In contrast, 71% of readers oppose efforts to remove books from their local public libraries.

71% of readers oppose efforts to remove books from their local public libraries.

29% of readers did not express that they were opposed to efforts to remove books from their local public libraries.

I am reminded of the book, Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury.

The title is based on the thought that 451 degress (F) is the temperature at which book paper catches fire, and burns.

If you are not familiar with the book, it describes society where ‘fireman’ search out and burn books.

And why?

It was felt that books and learning in general created inequality and unhappiness, and so books were banned and burned.

In the book, in a speech about why firemen burn books, Bradbury reveals that it was the people that originally decided that the books should be removed.

Who needed the problems caused by books?

For myself, that 29% of people who identify themselves as readers in a poll, did not express that they were opposed to efforts to remove books from their local public libraries … well … beyond the words that I have available to me.

5.5.2022 – tiresome for children

tiresome for children
always, forever, have to
explain to grown ups

Les grandes personnes ne comprennent jamais rien toutes seules, et c’est fatigant, pour les enfants, de toujours et toujours leur donner des explications.

Antoine de Saint-Exupèry in the ‘Le Petit Prince’ (1943).

In English:

Grown-ups never understand anything for themselves, and it is tiresome for children to be always and forever explaining things to them.

Jaxon was not happy that I could not understand that if he, Jaxon, could handle the waves of the Atlantic Ocean, he could easily handle the May River.

Geeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee whiz.

5.4.2022 – enhanced use of force

enhanced use of force
deescalation training
so who but the Lord

Deadly force “is always the last resort” and that philosophy, as well as de-escalation training, needs to be ingrained into the department’s policies, Grand Rapids Police Chief Eric Winstrom told The Detroit News Tuesday.

So starts an article in the Detroit News with the headline, “Grand Rapids police need enhanced use of force, de-escalation training, chief says” by Leonard N. Fleming.

The words, enhanced use of force, de-escalation training, strung together in a line, the syllables clicking in a row like the sound of the wheels of a train over gaps in the tracks, grabbed and held my attention.

The article details the efforts of the Police Chief of Grand Rapids, Michigan (where I grew up) to address publicly the death of Patrick Lyoya, 26, who was shot in the back of the head by officer Christopher Schurr on April 4 following a tussle on the ground … after a traffic stop.

Mr. Fleming quotes the Chief as saying, “From what I’m hearing from the community, a real vocal part of the community is there’s no rebuilding trust. You’ve got to build it because it was never there.

Chief Winstrom said that on April 26th, 2022.

In 1947, in the magazine, Poetry, Langston Hughes published this poem.

I looked and I saw
That man they call the Law.
He was coming
Down the street at me!
I had visions in my head
Of being laid out cold and dead,
Or else murdered
By the third degree.

I said, O, Lord, if you can,
Save me from that man!
Don’t let him make a pulp out of me!
But the Lord he was not quick.
The Law raised up his stick
And beat the living hell
Out of me!

Now, I do not understand
Why God don’t protect a man
From police brutality.
Being poor and black,
I’ve no weapon to strike back
So who but the Lord
Can protect me?

We’ll see.

The title of the poem is ‘Who but the Lord?

A footnote in the “The collected poems of Langston Hughes” (Knopf, 1994) says that the last line was added when the poem was reprinted in the book, The Panther and the Lash.

That was in 1967.

That last line again?

We’ll see.

I gots no real standing as a social critic so I will take refuge (hide) under the cover of saying I am only a social commentator.

I just hold up the mirror and you can see what you want to see.

The Rev. Al once said something along the lines of, “You can use a mirror to reflect yourself or you can use a mirror to correct yourself.”

You’ve got to build trust because it was never there.

We’ll see.

5.3.2022 – sustaining the change

sustaining the change
not tax on the many poor
but the wealthy few

In a letter written from Vandalia (Illinois) dated, March 2, 1839 to a Mr. William S. Wait, Abraham Lincoln, then 30 years old, wrote about proposed legislation in the State that:

That proposition is little less than self-evident. The only question is as to sustaining the change before the people. I believe it can be sustained, because it does not increase the tax upon the “ many poor ” but upon the “wealthy few” by taxing the land that is worth $50 or $100 per acre, in proportion to its value, instead of, as heretofore, no more than that which was worth but $5 per acre. This valuable land, as is well known, belongs, not to the poor, but to the wealthy citizen.

I am not surprised and I AM pleased that Mr. Lincoln saw taxes that way.

I am not surprised either that in a speech two years earlier on the same subject of state finances, Mr. Lincoln said:

. . . this movement is exclusively the work of politicians; a set of men who have interests aside from the interests of the people, and who, to say the most of them, are, taken as a mass, at least one long step removed from honest men. I say this with the greater freedom because, being a politician myself, none can regard it as personal.

Self interested politicians looking to get rich off the poor.

The great American tradition I guess.