Election Post-Mortem

It’s been a long while since I sat down at the computer to put my thoughts down. I’ve been unable to focus, unable to form coherent thoughts about what is happening and unsure if I had anything reasonable to add. This past year has sort of stripped me of the words and thoughts to describe it. It is not a year, growing up as I did, that I was prepared for. …

for Dave Chrestensen

During the set break for the Grandmother’s show at Sonny’s I was talking to Dave Chrestensen, the drummer for the opening act. I’m not sure which band it was because he was the drummer in so many bands at the time. We were chatting when Don Preston came over, congratulated him for a good set and then sighed.

I remember he looked at him pretty point blank and said, “One piece of advice kid. Don’t just spend all your time partying, save your money, cause you really don’t want to be doing this when you’re my age.”

My oldest sister and I get along, dare I say it, actually like each other, and not just in the “we grew up together” way so we know how to hang out without grating too much way. This is not to say that I don’t like my other sisters because I do, but my oldest sibling and I really see the world much the same way, so when we talk we can veer off into the “no-go” topics without fear of alienating each other. Frankly, life seems to thrust “no-go” topics at us constantly.

Lately, we’ve been working through the…

Congressman Samuel W. Arnold (my great-grandfather)

I’m surprised by what of my writing people choose to read and, though I don’t often know, why. So, it was a mixture of surprise and dread when a roommate from college weighed in on my amateur punditry that I recently posted. Though we’d had lunch one time during a business trip through ABQ, we don’t really engage much (online either). …

I was doing my usual routine of playing music on a Friday afternoon on my Freeform radio show. Getting to spin music for others is the dream fulfilled of my young self who’d routinely buy new music based on what was playing on the radio (back before media consolidation). So, as I’m looking at the liner notes of a compact disc, a news reporter at the station comes in with her parents in-tow.

I say, “Hi” then hearing the they’re from Iowa say, “So I’m assuming you’re going back on Sunday cause you have a job to do on Monday?”

Towards the end of Netflix’s documentary American Factory, the owner of Fujua Glass says, “The Purpose of Life is to Work” as if it is yet another Chinese proverb that is an understood. A saying, like the handful that various Chinese managers in the movie drop in that points to a differing world view that undergirds and provides the tension in the movie. Yet, it is more than just a simple story of culture clash as the last few minutes make clear. Right before the credits role, that same chairman now walks through the factory floor looking at the robots…

Is there a swamp that needs draining?

On a friend’s FB post he posed the above question, and, after a few days, weighed in with the below response.

But first, some background. I know several people who work for the federal government, three of them closely. 1) A biologist who works for the Fish & Wildlife, 2) my sister in law who works for the FAA, and 3) my niece who works for GSA. All in Colorado. I know many who are civilians or civilian contractors with the DOD and have given background checks for numerous people applying for jobs…

I don’t often get a personal story to reflect the reality of living in America. Everything seems so abstract, as happening out there, but this story sort of erupted into our lives on the second to last day of 2019.

First, some background: for the last 17 years, my wife worked at Albuquerque Healthcare for the Homeless, and I work at the community college, so we are both on the front-lines of what the lack of an adequate social safety net looks like. Most of the time, however, we can leave that behind at the end of the day.


Not long after the inauguration of Donald J. Trump, some friends were over for Passover. We talked about what we were looking to improve on in the next year, and I said, “I really don’t want to go through life thinking that half the country is racist or sexist and loves what this President is doing. I want to know what they were thinking and approach them as rational human beings. And I want to make sure I stay involved.”

I did for a time, scheduling Fridays as my time to call my US Rep or Senators, donated to a…

Some observations:

“For Republicans, the key fact is that Ukraine received the money, regardless of any request from Trump for an investigation of Joe Biden or the 2016 U.S. elections.”

Thus the beginning of the narrative, the “No harm, no foul” defense.


1) If person A tries to bribe person B and person B refuses to take the bribe, isn’t the act of person A trying to bribe still illegal?

Likewise, the “No harm, no foul” is a variation of the defense the Republican’s used with the Mueller report. He can’t be guilty of obstruction if there is no…

Don McIver

Poet, writer, producer, monologist, rhetor, Dudeist Priest.

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