Thursday, November 23, 2023

Grateful, Thankful And Blessed

Re-posted from last year:

For each new morning with its light, For rest and shelter of the night, For health and food, for love and friends, For everything Thy goodness sends. - Ralph Waldo Emerson

I have so much to be thankful for it’s hard to know where to start. So I will start with you - the MOTI who gather here. We are like family whose members don’t always agree and some times  even squabble but are nevertheless connected by a deep common bond. Unlike real families our bond isn’t blood but rather the shared values and principles that our country was founded on and we learned to cherish. We are bound together by our Constitution, the guide to building an America where freedom, opportunity, prosperity, and civil society flourish.

I am thankful for the many other things I have to be grateful for: I’m grateful I was born on the cusp of the 50s, when America was great and nobody was ashamed of that.

dutch colonial searsA Sears-Roebuck Dutch colonial; ‘colonial’ - you could never list it that way today.

For having been born to a world where individual freedom, self-reliance and personal responsibility were core values of everyone who aspired to be a good citizen, and that was nearly everyone.

Where the freedom call of the open road was a siren’s song


beckoning us to explore the land and our place in it.

road into the mist

I’m grateful that I was born when America was seen as a melting pot - and that was a good thing, not bad. A time before ‘cultural appropriation’ was a thing and, if used at all, applied only to the Brits raiding Egyptian tombs.

manhattan mexican tacosTaco Tuesday wasn’t a thing and tacos weren’t racist

I’m grateful for having received an actual education focused on knowledge, critical thinking and how to think rather than indoctrination consisting of what to think about such things as ‘critical race theory’ and other ‘social justice’ issues.

I’m grateful that I was raised in a time when many people, black and white, worked to correct true civil rights injustices. And when “peaceful protests”


meant marches and sit-ins rather than riots and and the creation of fake victims to be exploited for political gain.

I’m grateful for having been young at a time when it wasn’t necessary to feel guilty about everything that I ate, drank, drove, bought or dreamed about for fear of being selfish and killing the planet.

red 59 chevy impalaJust because it was cool

For these, and much, much more, I’m truly grateful. I will wrap up this Thanksgiving post with my annual MOTI Thanksgiving prayer from my mirror days:

In addition to all the other blessings

you have conferred on my reflective frame

I wish to thank you, Lord,

for the companionship of steadfast comrades

whose wit and wisdom and strength

help steer me through these tempestuous seas

of flattery and lies churned to fury by the ill will of demagogues.


A special thanks to all who visit here. I wish you a peaceful, happy Thanksgiving unmarred by strife. Because there is always something to be thankful for.

2023 Update: As you know, this has been a challenging year. In January my sight, which had been deteriorating for months, was nearly gone. It was finally diagnosed as severely inflamed retinas caused by one of my immunotherapy drugs. All the life saving medicines can turn on healthy tissue apparently. A long course of steroids finally restored my vision for which I was more than grateful, and began to look forward to summer.

Not Yet. In May I was hospitalized with  a severe case of Norovirus and found out that my latest MRIs showed what appeared to be regrowth of one of the brain tumors. So June, neurosurgery. Turned out it was NOT new cancer, thank you God, but rather radiation detritus (scarring) which was causing pressure etc. etc. that needed to be removed to reduce pressure. July, set back by pulmonary embolisms, both lungs, and a nasty case of fungal pneumonia which left me so weak I couldn’t stand up. I no more got out of the hospital from all that than I found myself right back (August) with hypernatremia (low sodium). Released a week later, weaker than ever. And since I wouldn’t want to go more than 2 months without a visit to my favorite hospital, I got a case of ulcerative colitis that my doc insisted I go to the ED for evaluation (October) due to bleeding, blood thinners etc., etc.. Through all this, including times when I could not get out of a chair or bed or toilet without A LOT of help, Raj has been my stalwart hero and human lifter. Did I chose wisely or what?

Anyway I’m very grateful that I’m here. Still doing every other week chemo as well as immunotherapy every 3 weeks. As long as it’s working and I can tolerate it I suspect it will continue indefinitely. Before my surgery the neurosurgeon explained many potential outcomes as a result of the operation as the mass was located in a very sensitive brain area responsible for motion.  Again, I thank God, and your prayers for pulling we through with no major (i.e. unable to walk) problems. I am left with a probably permanent problem with balance and a few fine motor skills. With your prayers and ongoing physical therapy I will continue to work to compensate as much as I can and I’m learning to deal with it.

So yes, all things considered I have many, many reasons to be thankful for this year. But to be honest, I would welcome a break from hospitalizations over the holidays! And I am hoping to get strong enough to begin some sort of physical training to get  some strength back as even walking upstairs is a major effort at this point. I hate being an invalid and in fact haven’t even been able to acknowledge that word up till now. But there it is, they don’t handout Handicapped license plates for nothing. I will deal with it.

So on this day of thanksgiving I thank each of you for your concern, encouragement and prayers. There is no way to let you know how much it has meant to me and Raj, we are forever grateful. I wish I could operate at full capacity again and perhaps I can at some point. You keep praying and I’ll keep trying, promise.

I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving. And remember no matter what hardships we face…there is always, always something to be grateful for.

grateful thankful blessed

Sunday, November 19, 2023

Time To Get Mad At Yourself

You may recall Bari Weiss as the NYT opinion writer and editor who was hounded out of her job for not being woke enough for her colleagues. Hardly a conservative, she has nevertheless been adequately red pilled out of what passes for polite society on the left. Her latest and last provocation was the left’s reaction to October 7th. 

When antisemitism moves from the shameful fringe into the public square, it is not about Jews. It is never about Jews. It is about everyone else. It is about the surrounding society or the culture or the country. It is an early warning system—a sign that the society itself is breaking down. That it is dying.

It is a symptom of a much deeper crisis—one that explains how, in the span of a little over 20 years since Sept 11, educated people now respond to an act of savagery not with a defense of civilization, but with a defense of barbarism.


At some point classic liberals must reach the point where they can no longer cling to the left’s baseless allegations, misdeeds and outright lies.  That’s the difference between classic liberals and the new Bolshevists; the former can be persuaded by unpleasant facts and truths while the later continue to ignore the inconsistencies out of existence.

Do read or watch Ms. Weiss’s speech to the Federalist Society national lawyers convention. Ilya Shapiro calls it a “speech for the ages.” Will it wake people up? Some, other classic liberals who’ve allowed themselves to slumber in the postmodern cult of nihilism for too long.

At first, things like postmodernism and postcolonialism and postnationalism seemed like wordplay and intellectual games—little puzzles to see how you could “deconstruct” just about anything. What I came to see over time was that it wasn’t going to remain an academic sideshow. And that it sought nothing less than the deconstruction of our civilization from within. 

But sadly not the bulk of the credentialed but ignorant mass products of the woke system of American “education” will heed the obvious call.

It seeks to upend the very ideas of right and wrong.

It replaces basic ideas of good and evil with a new rubric: the powerless (good) and the powerful (bad). It replaced lots of things. Color blindness with race obsession. Ideas with identity. Debate with denunciation. Persuasion with public shaming. The rule of law with the fury of the mob.

People were to be given authority in this new order not in recognition of their gifts, hard work, accomplishments, or contributions to society, but in inverse proportion to the disadvantages their group had suffered, as defined by radical ideologues. 

And there you have it: the idea of meritocracy on which America was founded and thrived has been replaced with entitlement by reverse birthright. And all this in the span of just a couple of generations.

So we either let the heathens and rapacious animals take over the earth or we fight them now, before their critical mass makes it impossible. Bari calls her comrades, left and right, to fight with her. The clues are everywhere now: the half-baked theories based on half-backed science more interested in social engineering than truth i.e. climate warming. Or the even more half-baked theories based on more half-baked ideologies such as critical race theory and ESG. Or flat-out crackpot theories of a gender/sex fluidity that has brought us to cross-dressing teachers and transgendered story “ladies” exposing children to deviant behavior as though it were the most normal thing in the world. Not to mention the conversion of children to whatever the opposite gender is and casual, non-parental approved, gender reassignment.

Quotes Template (800 × 800 px)

Such lunacy - the destruction of civilization in the name of a tyrannical New World Order – is, I fear, a nod to humans willingly embracing idiocy, gullibility and reluctance to make waves. 

So what do we do?

First: look. We must recover our ability to look and to discern accordingly. We must look past the sloganeering and the propaganda and take a hard look at what’s in front of our eyes.

Look first at what just happened. At the barbarism that Hamas carried out.

Look at the reaction to it. Take stock of how profoundly the lies and the rot have traveled. How badly the forces of civilization are faring in this battle. How it is the most educated, the most pedigreed who have become the most morally confused.

Time to stop blaming the bat. Clearly it’s the pitchers.

mistEarly November Mist