Maybe you ARE the answer.

Well, in this day and age of I has been busy, there has been so much news that has spilled over the edge. It’s hard to keep up, so I’ll start here.

March 24, 2018 – March For Our Lives

“What [injustice] would move you enough to get you to march?” I was asked this at book club years ago during the George W. Bush Administration and although I was outraged at much going on at the time, I was hard-pressed to think of anything I felt so strongly about that I would put my feet in the street.

Well, fast forward less than 20 years and here we are! February 14, 2018, Nicholas Cruz, a lone gunman entered the Marjory Stoneman Douglas high school in Parkland, Florida, killed 17 students, wounded 17 more, and sparked a movement.

So I marched.

My sign, Ann’s sign¹:

And while I’m reassured that the Stoneman Douglas students who SURVIVED a mass-shooting are kicking it — putting walk to the talk, engaging parents, veterans, and gun owners, including people of color marginalized in discussion of gun violence, the all of it  — this time is different.

And it hit me. The survivors of the Sandy Hook elementary school shooting look like the younger brothers and sisters of the Stoneman Douglas high school students because age relative, THEY ARE! Five years after Sandy Hook, the six- and seven-year-olds are eleven and twelve.

Already through a mass-shooting once, they are not even in high school.  Ugh.

Boom. There it is. Gun control. March For Our Lives has put my feet in the street.

(My take on bump stocks, gun violence statistics.)

March 28, 2018 – MFOL: #50MilesMore

At noon on Wednesday, March 28, Traxler Park, Janesville, WI there was a meet-and-greet rally for the group of students who extended March For Our Lives by 50 miles and marched from Madison, Wisconsin to Janesville, Wisconsin — hometown of Paul Ryan.

The student speakers were impressive. Recounting their 50-mile walk, I expect #50milesmore was a formative experience. It will be a jumping off point in their lives to bigger things.

So today I restrict my comments to the speech by Pardeep Singh Kaleka.  Mr. Kaleka’s father was killed in the mass shooting at the Sikh Temple in Oak Creek, Wisconsin in 2012. As his father died on the floor, he prayed. But his father didn’t pray for himself.

His ‘thoughts and prayers’ were for the living. For those that remain. And here I am. Thoughts and prayers put my feet on the street.

Finally, from Mr. Kaleka: react in peace.

React in peace. Not rest. React.

React in peace.

I can get behind that.


Live in a spirit of relentless optimism. Here is video of Pardeep Singh Kaleka relating the story of his father’s last words at the TEDxMilwaukee. (Video starts at 15:00 although the whole is IMO, worth the watch):


¹ Our signs were lettered, colored, and the AK-15s drawn freehand by a professional to whom we say ‘thank you’!

Taxes vs. the Common Good

With the projection that the tax reform bill which passed this week will throw another $1.5 trillion dollars on the national debt over the next decade, I was reminded of a quote from Ernest Hemingway:

“How did you go bankrupt?”
Two ways. Gradually, then suddenly.”

― Ernest HemingwayThe Sun Also Rises

and combined with The Tipping Point — an idea and a book by Malcolm Gladwell:

“The tipping point is the critical point in an evolving situation that leads to a new and irreversible development.” (Google)

I wonder if this political experiment called the United States, this democracy, has hit a tipping point?

  • Did we hit the tipping point when we decided Social Security was a good idea? (1935)
  • With Medicare and Medicaid? (1966)
  • Various and sundry wars through the years? Ugh. Now that’s a long list …

Can we continue to afford capitalism? Pure unadulterated obeisance to business to solve any and all economic problems?

Well, the GOP Tax Reform Bill passed this week. And with some of the last minute additions to the bill — I’m looking at you Bob Corker — “taxation without representation” has morphed into “no taxation with representation.” Which, when you think about it, explains the Kochs — the Charles & David. But I’ll save that for another time. This is a time of good cheer.

Due to cold weather, the celebratory beer lap around the White House Rose Garden in golf carts has been postponed. Also, Trump had to get to Mar-a-lago. 

A Merry Christmas to you all!


As I rifled through my list of draft posts, I tripped across the Vox editorial by a former Wisconsinite who noted that his quality of life is better. In Sweden. Where there are

… more TAXES!!!

And it reminds me that at one time improvement and maintenance of the “common good” in the US was a priority, a goal. Taxes were not a necessary evil. Taxes paid for education, for infrastructure, for common defense, for all the things in the Preamble to the Constitution. The strength of our struggled union can be measured by our individual freedoms and the quality of life afforded to all. Not just a few. All of ‘We the People,’ the whole collective, the Common Good.


In closing, consider the metaphorical economic teeter totter – businesses at one end have taken our money and continue to take our money — I’m looking at you now, Apple — and they have run off to work in other playgrounds leaving our Common Good butt hurt on the other end of the totter, on the ground, awaiting trickle down.  Maybe we’ll have lunch money.

And the playground monitors don’t address playground shenanigans, changes to the landscape, the changing rules. After all, they’re part, parcel, and party to all of it. (And I’m still looking at you Bob Corker.)

Recess is almost over. The trading day ends. The bell will ring.¹


¹ Love me my mixed metaphors.