We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Had dinner with a Swedish friend this weekend. Just back from Sweden. H told me the Swedes have no problem, on the whole, with mass immigration. He said "Our view is, they are just people. We don't judge them by a few bad apples."
“The judicial passivism of the Supreme Court has combined with the activism of both Congresses and presidents to produce a behemoth federal government, which seemingly renders the actual Constitution a mere relic, rather than the governing document it purports to be.”
American governments of all flavors hate the Constitution because its purpose is to restrain government power. This is what was meant to be unique about America and the idea for which much blood has been shed.
If anybody wants or expects anything from government other than defense, border maintenance, and basic law, they have a slave or serf mentality and just do not get the American Idea. I am a patriot dinosaur, obsolete in today's gimme, decadent world.
Pastor preached this morning on the loaves and the fishes and the hungry heart, advising something like this: Whenever you desire anything - food, love, material things, personal importance or glory, amusement, money, beauty, power, relationships, etc., just stop for a minute and ask yourself whether you are just trying to fill the hole in the soul that only God is big enough to fill with the bread of the Spirit.
He could have stopped right there. I have preached the same idea to myself many times. I will tell Pastor that I frequently desire sex, and I know in advance what he will say: "Me too."
Indeed, not all desire is desire for God. Just asking the question is enough, for us mortals. Humans are full of desires and subject to pointless temptations and wonderful desires. Shrinks would pose a similar question, but in a secular format. Pastors pay attention to false idols, and shrinks look for displacements.
Why should 23-year-old Mohammed work for four decades so that Hans or Fritz across the way can retire at 61 and lie on a beach in Mallorca? The idea that Mohammed would ever want to do such a thing out of love for Europe was a silly fantasy that European governments fed their worried citizens.
Muslims have a high birth rate because their approach to the future is fundamentally different than the European one. Europeans have chosen to have few children and many government agencies to take care of them. Muslims choose to have many children and few government agencies. The European values so admired by American leftists have no future.
Stevens was, if anything, too smart for his own good. Readers of his essays and correspondence know that he thought at length about the essence and purpose of poetry. Stevens was an Emersonian mystic for whom poetry was a substitute, and a fit one, for belief in God, which, for reasons he was usually vague about, was impossible for those of us living in the 20th century. The highest life to which man could aspire was one of exhaustive, all-consuming self invention. Like Eliot, he wrote the poems that fit his own extensive critical criteria to a T. I underlined the word “self” 46 times in my copy of the new Collected Poems.
Misery loves company. I hope to inspire readers towards my exercise program so you can share the pain with us.
My Fridays are just for calisthenics (it's never the same things, but it's always some form of "kick the sh-t out of you morning" at 5 am):
- 3 minutes Elliptical wake-up warm-up - 3 sets of medium-weight bench press, third dropped set to muscle failure, alternating with 3 types of high step-ups (this is to weaken me for the rest of the hour) - 3 sets of heavy ball smashes alternating with squats - 3 sets of hand/arm step-ups in plank position (not sure what they are called but my damaged shoulder can't do ordinary push-ups) alternating with heavy ball burpees (like Burners) - 2 sets of lunges with light weights alternating with 2 sets of one-sided kettlebell walks
That's it. One hour. I felt a little faint a few times, and out of breath often. Good stuff. The goal of calisthenics is to use your body with max intensity, not to build strength but to improve endurance, posture, agility, and cardio. If that sounds like a warm-up, then you don't know how many reps I do in each set.
After that, coffee, sausage, toast, and eggs at the diner with my Bible pals. Stress and challenge in all areas of life build American strength. That's Life in America,where all citizens strive constantly for physical, moral, spiritual, intellectual, relational, artistic, and financial improvement and uplift! What else is there to do?
Tomorrow is my 3 day/wk cardio-fat-burner day, first thing in the morning. That will be this simple routine, under 60 mins:
10 min intervals on elliptical 70 calf-lifts 1 1/2 min elbow plank 5 min stair machine 50 calf lift 1 min straight-arm plank 20 min inclined treadmill intervals - fast walk intervals 50 calf lift 1 min straight-arm plank 5 min stair machine fast
That's it. No breaks. I will shorten the calf thing with weights. The stair is a killer for me. Can't do 10 min on it at one shot. (As I explained before, Mon and Weds are for upper, back, and lower body heavy weight work plus pull-ups, pull-downs, dips, rows, one-arm and dumbell presses, etc) I am almost 6 months into this darn program now and showing some progress. Thank God for Sunday - day of rest and recovery before dead lift Monday.
We are blessed with a smart, savvy, knowledgeable, attentive trainer who really knows his physiology. Without him and accountability to him, this would not work at all. And I have a "partner" - Mrs. BD.
Economic freedom is so unpopular among liberals that Bernie Sanders openly disavowed it to the sound of roaring applause. Clinton was hesitant (for now) to fully label herself a socialist, so instead she said she’s a sorta-capitalist who thinks “capitalism has to be saved from itself.” This is another way of calling American people children who need to be rescued by benevolent bureaucrats, but that’s OK because Democrat voters fervently wish to be treated like children.
I have a problem with the premise of that question, assuming that the premise is that Americans work 35-40 hour weeks. Americans are not the French.
I don't know anybody in any field who works as little as a 40-hour week. Nobody other than clerical and support staff. Everybody I know works like a farmer, ie as long as it takes to get it done, to keep the job, to advance, and to show results. I do not think that most Americans count their work hours outside of union jobs. The 40-hour week was from another time, another era.
Perhaps my perception is skewed by working in business in NYC for a few years, so please inform me how I am wrong.
Since you are so interested, here are the species we shot last week in Manitoba, and which now reside in the freezer: Shoveler ("Smilin' Mallard"), Bluebill, lots of Redheads, Canvasback, Mallard, Gadwall, Wigeon, Pintail, and Canada Goose.
The limit in Manitoba is 8/day, any species of duck.
We also had some luck with Ruffed and Sharptail Grouse. I do love huntin' the grousies because you get to walk all day in beautiful places.
Photo of a few handsome Redheads - they taste as good as Canvasback. Tip for fellow duck hunters: forget steel shot. It often cripples and does not kill cleanly. Use heavy-shot or bismuth or anything else -our wonderful ducks deserve the best, despite the expense. I am through with steel shot for ducks and goose forever, as of now.