6 thoughts on “The Wages of Pandering

  1. LWM August 1, 2022 / 3:14 pm

    “The most egregious recent graduate of the Republican Weasel Academy gets what’s coming to him.”

    William! What kind of talk is that from an educated, literate, and I suspect by now, an old codger like myself.

    I just suggested shunning them about 15 years ago.

    • William Timberman August 1, 2022 / 4:16 pm

      Hey, LWM, how’ve you been? I hope all is well, and that none of the many COVID cousins have managed to do you and yours any harm.

      And yes, shunning is the more civilized approach, I grant you, but aren’t we really talking about a kind of secular version of End Times here? Shameless bootlickers on Fox News presuming to lecture us about the meaning of freedom, high priests of fascist sanctimony braying at us from every street corner, not to mention six out of the nine seats on the Supreme Court bench. Under the circumstances, shunning seems a bit too much like bringing the proverbial knife to a gunfight.

      I find humor a more satisfying and age-appropriate form of self-defense, the more so if our enemies don’t find it at all funny. (You’re right about the old, but not, I think, about conflating age and self-restraint. If anything, I’m even less tolerant than I was a decade ago of that wretched hive of scum and villainy the Republicans have managed to erect in the midst of our struggling democracy. As another old guy once said, “we must be cautious,” but I think we must also keep a lightsaber handy under our humble robes.)

  2. LWM August 1, 2022 / 5:23 pm

    I’m doing well. Glad to see you are also. My Uncle, Dr. Walter F. Riker, trained Dr. Fauci – and 1000s of other doctors during his 30 years as Chair of the Pharmacology Dept. at Cornell Medical School at New York Hospital. I benefited from their of their knowledge and wisdom during the AIDS years. They remained lifelong friends, as did many of his students. He was a remarkable man and I miss him. I understand disease vectors and masked immediately. Took all my shots. Gloves will prevent Monkeypox… but COVID, not so much, unless it mutates again, and it will, because we needed to impose a mandate and didn’t, because FREEDUMB! Under Trump, the messaging out of CDC was terrible. A mandate here at least, and prevent the unvaccinated from coming across the borders without strict regulations and quarantines, not because they are Muslims, or South Americans seeking asylum but because the virus is quite contagious. If it finds one body and infects it, it reproduces and mutates. Herd Immunity means you immunize the herd. In the wild,the herd achieves immunity the hard way. We just need to take a simple shot. We are not supposed to be sheep, but educated and civilized sentient beings. Alas, they are sheep and they need shepherds or they fall prey to the wolves and worse. All my doctors say they’d vote for me if I ran. Not gonna happen.

    Who said that? It wasn’t Napoleon. He said you can do anything with a bayonet but sit on it. Allegedly.

    • William Timberman August 1, 2022 / 6:21 pm

      Wow, talk about six degrees of separation! A hop and a skip and we jump from WT to LWM to the estimable Dr. Fauci, whose expertise is matched only by his compassion and his steadfastness in the face of militant ignorance. Despite my literary pretensions, and my lifelong love of philology, I began my college studies in chemical engineering, so I still consider myself an educated layman when it comes to science, and have the utmost respect for its actual practitioners.

      Mmm…. “Allegedly,” that overworked draft horse of the politically timid. Doesn’t actually matter whether it was Napoleon, or, as the bon mot about Shakespeare had it, somebody else with the same name. Folk wisdom has a direct connection to the id, and must therefore be respected, even when it seems at odds with the facts. Otherwise, poetry would disappear from our lives along with the bullshit.

      PS: The old guy in question was Obi-Wan Kenobi. A somewhat more fictional hero than the Napoleon of French hagiography, but only by a little.

  3. LWM August 7, 2022 / 9:42 am

    Obi Wan Kenobi works for me. Benjamin Whorf (not the Star Trek Whorf, the other one) began his career as a Chemical Engineer and became a famous Linguist.. Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis Language, Thought and Reality. I did not know this about you, William.

    • William Timberman August 7, 2022 / 10:05 am

      We all contain multitudes. It never ceases to amaze me, when I get to talking to people, what I learn about what they’ve seen and done. Doesn’t matter what their station in life is either. It’d be nice if it was all stored somewhere for later retrieval, like some sort of Gaia Wayback Machine, for those who never get to, or never want to, tell their own stories,. Maybe that’s what literature is for, the principle being that while not all ancient monuments should be preserved—room needs to be left for the creations of posterity—without preserving at least some of them, succeeding generations will be left with a much impoverished vision of their own possibilities.

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