The Bishop and the Butterfly: Murder, Politics, and the End of the Jazz Age
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    An already belligerent 21st Century enters its Teens


    Just two weeks from today, on the 21th of January, 2013, Barack Obama will be inaugurated for the second time as president of these United States.

    Obama, as you may remember, is our first half-black president and the man so loathed by his political archenemies, for four full years jillions of dollars destined for desperately needed domestic growth have been held hostage while those jackals were busy working at destroying his presidency.  All so that he would never, ever get a second chance at under-privatizing America.

    Last year, in 2012 (A most hectic and flabbergasting year. There's no chance anything like the Republican campaign to nominate a presidential candidate and get him elected will ever come our way again. Right?) we learned one thing for sure:  Never turn your back on your enemies.  Or your front, either.  They're everywhere.  But what the enemy side learned in return after spending an unprecedented three or four or maybe five billion dollars to put a Republican in the White House is that money can't buy you love.  (Fear, yes, but love. . .uh uh.)  Barack Obama won a second term handily.
    Let me write that again:  Barack Obama won a second term handily.

    But, while it's true that my guy won and that other guy lost and I'm so glad 2012 is over and done, I'm already getting nervous about 2013. The 21st century, a century already not known for it's kindness or consideration, is becoming a teenager.  If we thought we had seen enough of our new century's oblivious silliness, misdirected angst, and uncontrollable rage, just wait until those hormones really kick in.

    If we thought we had to be vigilant before, I submit that our tasks are just beginning. We can't be everywhere all the time and it's natural that things will get by us, but we should keep in mind that in order for any century to continue along a good and healthy path, it has to learn good and healthy habits in its formative years.   This is a duty that must not be shirked, and, of course, it's our side that knows just how to do it.  Ahem.  And Aha.

    Remember the last century?  The notorious Twentieth?  It had its ups and downs--lots of downs--but who could have predicted that in the 21st Century we would be looking back with fondness on so many elements of the one that came before? Not me. I thought by the 21st century we'd be looking back and thinking, "How quaint. We won't be doing that again."

    But here we are, fighting many of the same domestic battles against poverty, health care, education, women's issues, labor issues, and inequality of every shape and form.  Are we strong enough to finally make the changes necessary to make us a true government of the people?  I think so.  I hope so.  Sure we are.

    When I started this venture four years ago, on the very afternoon of Barack Obama's first inauguration, I didn't have a clue about what I was doing.  (Oh, yeah?  That obvious, huh?)  I called my website "Ramona's Voices" because I knew my opinions wouldn't count for much without some backup, either undeniably expert or profoundly convincing.  I'm constantly surprised by the things I've missed while others could see them coming a mile away  Every now and then I can see things early, or at least not last, but what this all tells me is that we need each other to make sense of what's going on out there. 

    I plan on keeping on with this.  I'm apparently enjoying the misery of it all way too much to stop now.  But there are changes coming, including a possible move to Wordpress.  I'm thinking about changing my blog name, too, if it won't cause too much turmoil (on my part, not yours).

    What do you think?  Be honest, now.  You're my focus group.

    But whatever happens in this tumultuous teen year, I'm hoping to share it with a roomful of company.  LOUD company.  Boisterous company.  Smart and funny, too.  Because lord knows, I'm not up to doing this all by myself.

    (Cross-posted at Ramona's Voices)


    Wow, I hereby render unto Ramona the Dayly thought of the day for this here Dagblog Site given to all of her from all of me.

    Tumultuous teens!

    If I recall correctly we had half the American population and about 1/3 of the world population when I was born.

    7+ billion people is an amazing number.

    And providing for our nation's 330? million folks is quite a challenge!

    Thanks, Richard.  I haven't had one of those Dayly thought awards for a while now.  Feels pretty good.  I personally thought my phrase "under-privatizing America" was much more worthy but what do I know?

    I'll take it however I can get it.  Makes me feel pretty darned special.

    It just did not hit me that 2013 took us into the 'teens'. ha

    How can not one metaphorically see a century as a potential human life?

    And here we are; in the teens.

    I read this thought nowhere else!

    Coming from the mid twentieth century; I guess I missed it. 


    Just so that no one shoots the Archduke Ferdinand next year; there is a lot to look forward to!

    Well, yeah!  Now I get it.  1913 was also the year of a terrible mine strike in the U.P.  I've been working off and on on a book about it, and, fascinating as the subject is, I am not doing it justice.

    Maybe in my next life. . .

    I love your website, visit it frequently - don't know why you would want to change it -especially the name and content.

    Thanks, Aunt Sam.  I'll add your vote to my tally.  It means a lot, by the way.

    2008-2012 was all about the right being angry about what they presumed Obama wanted to do, and not what he did.  In the face of all evidence, the right acted as if Obama reintroduced prayer in schools by substituting Mao's Little Red Book for the Bible.

    As it was with Clinton, the right is pissed off at Obama for things he hasn't done.  Gun rights?  The last four years were a great time to enjoy your gun rights.  Certainly, nobody was stopping you.

    Taxes?  Obama lowered them until the most recent deal and that deal only had to happen because his political foes pushed the deficit issue when they shouldn't have.  Now we enter the teens and he has raised taxes and there are still budget issues ahead.  Also, we had two major mass shootings and enough little ones that I just had to write "major mass shootings," as if something like that needs another adjective.  So he's going to gave to d something about guns.


    Agreed, Michael.  And, with 2014 looming, they're not going to stop now.  It'll only get worse.  They can make up anything as a reason to hate and it'll fly.  We can't change the leaders but we might be able to change the attitudes of the electorate.  It's worth a try.  2014 is looming for us, too.

    Notice how the Right uses the term "gun control" as if it means "gun banning."  They know exactly what they're doing.  If they can get enough people to see them in the same light they know they'll win.  Gun control is an obvious remedy to most of our gun problems, but we won't get anywhere as long as half the country believes we really want to take all guns away.  Statistics don't mean anything to them.  We can tell them until we're blue in the face that our nation ranks highest in the world in gun violence but as long as the loony Right keeps equating it to government takeover we're getting nowhere.

    We need a different angle.  I don't know offhand what that would be.


    Reminds me of Franklin's "Silence Dogood"

    A European flair.... Constancia Co manier

    Ramona; why give up years of established name recognition?

    "Constant Commoner", suggests to me, resignation, as to a station in life  forever an untouchable. A commoner.

    Ramona' Assembly Hall ...RAH RAH RAH ....Lets march, let us change things.

    You're probably right that it's silly to give up a name I've used for four years but I have to disagree that constant commoner suggests resignation.  I'm proud to be a commoner.  I've been one all my life and I'll die one.  Nothing wrong with that.

    I like your masthead and new name. But I liked you when you were writing books. You will like the wordpress community. You will do really well there no matter what you title your page. Just keep the page design clean and simple so it don't take a long time to load. I had readers tell me they liked that about my page. Some of us have slow access to the internet. I am expecting the far right to keep doing what they did the last 4 years. It won't get them any farther then the last 4 years. Their nonsense is very tiring.

    Thanks, Trking.  I think you might be mixing me up with someone else, however.  Yes, I've been writing books but haven't had any published--yet.  My background is in newspaper and magazine writing.

    I've been looking into Wordpress and I'm finding it more complicated and not nearly as user-friendly as Blogger.  I could probably clean up my Blogger site to make it look cleaner and more like Wordpress, and maybe I should.  But I keep hearing from people who tell me I'll never get anywhere unless I switch to Wordpress or something more professional.  I really don't know what I'm doing, and can use all the advice I can get.

    I know my pages are too busy for people with slower access and I want to work on that, but it seems to me I might get more Google traffic with Blogger since Google owns it.

    Lots to think about.  Thanks again.


    BTW, nice masthead and blog title.

    Thanks, Michael.  The picture is of my grandmother's old house--or what's left of it.  It's in the Keweenaw Peninsula in Michigan's U.P and I spent many happy days there as a kid.  I always wanted to save that house but it wasn't mine to save.  Still, this image, sad as it is, somehow reminds me our joyful, raggedy times there.

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