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Paul A Duginski
Paul A Duginski
Paul Duginski is a political cartoonist and veteran newspaper staff artist. He enjoys reading history, literature and going bodyboarding whenever he has time.
 

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Someday You'll Be Asked

Oct. 25, 2017 2:49 pm
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While Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) follows Trump around the Capitol hallways like a puppy dog, four prominent fellow Republicans have stood up and declared they are not the president’s poodles.

They are Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), former President George W. Bush and, now, Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.)

All have delivered stinging rebukes of the vile Trumpism that holds Washington and most of their GOP confreres in thrall.

Bush is out of politics; McCain suffers from terminal brain cancer; and Corker — and now Flake — are not running for reelection. Those circumstances free them to speak their minds publicly — to boldly tell the truth that other Republicans may still only murmur in private. But Trumpism is so evil that I’d like to see other members of the GOP develop the backbone to speak up, too.

We may have reached a tipping point, much like the moment during the Army McCarthy hearings in June of 1954 when Joseph Welch, a Boston lawyer and special counsel for the U.S. Army, called out Republican Sen. Joseph R. McCarthy.

McCarthy was a mean-spirited bully much like Donald Trump, and when Welch stood up to him, it was the beginning of McCarthy’s downfall.

At one point in the hearing, Welch famously said, “Until this moment, Senator, I think I never really gauged your cruelty or your recklessness." McCarthy attempted to continue talking, and Welch interrupted angrily, saying, “You have done enough. Have you no sense of decency?”

More than 63 years later, the same thing could be said to Trump. He has said enough, both orally and in his 140-character Twitter assassinations.

In 1915 the British Parliamentary Recruiting Committee released a famous poster of a man in his living room with a little girl perched on his lap, asking, “Daddy, what did you do in the Great War?”

Someday, those living today will be asked — perhaps by a daughter — precisely what they did in the war against the vulgar, bombastic, misogynistic reality-show entertainer and alleged serial sexual harasser who now occupies the White House.


 
Thomas J Donegan
October 26, 2017 at 12:28 am
Interesting...

Hi Paul!

Most people seem to project onto the future some semblance of the here and now, but as the moral order of society has shifted from objective moral principles to pragmatic hedonistic/nihilism chances are most little girls will not know who their fathers are... Moreover, a little girl - if she is young enough to sit on her father's lap will not possess the wherewithal to know what you call "Trumpism" - and if such a girl should come to be, and she asks such questions, she will likely also want to know how Bill Clinton could be elected to the Presidency... And she would like to know what her father did vis-a-vis in the war against the vulgar, bombastic, misogynistic reality-show entertainer serial sexual harasser/rapist - and all of the Media coordinated destruction of those that tried to get a fair public hearing regarding their experiences at the hands of the Arkansas Attorney General, Governor, and POTUS and his Misogynistic wife, Hillary.

I'm not a fan of Trump's bedside manner, but he is not an ideologue, nor a conservative, he is a pragmatist very much like the typical Democrat (Democrats are course, but that is okay, because they are Democrats ) in his demeanor; if he was not trying to tear down the bureaucratic system in DC - if he was attempting to expand Government he would be celebrated by most of those that revile him...

Take care, Paul!

Cordially,

tjd

Thinker's Post
Paul A Duginski
October 26, 2017 at 3:10 pm

"Daddy, what did you do in the Great War?" That’s the slogan on the British poster to which I alluded. In it, the girl is young enough to sit on her father’s lap, yet possesses the perspicacity to ask the question.

Similarly, my own daughters have a keen eye for cant and political horseflesh. They know what a lying, bombastic, misogynistic jackass looks like, and they’ve had that clarity from a young age. They would also quickly recognize your feeble attempt to distract them by relitigating the presidency of Bill Clinton — or debating the pecadilloes of any number of politicians from many years ago — when we have a presidency in full-on crisis.

Moreover, this demagogue isn’t just a U.S. Senator like Joe McCarthy. This buffoon has his fingers in the nuclear button.

If you’re really a patriot, as I sense is your view of yourself, you’d be resisting this president rather than making excuses for him. Put country before party or ideology, man! Again, though, we all know faux patriotism when we see it — and we see plenty of it with Trump and his supporters and apologists.

We can all agree that Bill Clinton’s indiscretions are bad. I’m not a Democrat, so I don’t have the slightest difficulty saying that. But Clinton’s presidency accomplished things and had merit. Not so the current occupant of the Oval Office. Unless you count evil and negative things as accomplishments.

Trump will be swept into the dustbin of history, along with Roger Ailes and Bill O’Reilly — and all the rest of the right-wing hypocrites.

And believe me, given how Trump supporters view women, I wouldn’t want my daughters within 25 yards of their laps.

Thomas J Donegan
October 27, 2017 at 12:13 am

Hi Paul!

As it is Paul, I thought your blog-post was intended to distract from what is transpiring in Washington. The entire Government of the United States, the DNC, the social-political Left, a number of big-government Republicans and the Press have been invested in a narrative which began on fumes, a lot of smoke and hopes, dreams and aspirations – at the center of that investigation seems to have been actual collusion and corruption, purposed to tag an innocent bystander (Donald Trump) so as to distract his Administration from uncovering the criminality and treason which wouldn’t have been a problem if Hillary had won the Presidency. Her Justice Department and her Government wouldn’t care to look into what she and Barack had accomplished with the help of Eric Holder, James Comey, the Podesta Group, Uranium One, the Clinton Foundation, Loretta Lynch, John Brennan, the Russians and others transferring 20% of American uranium reserves to Russia. All of this may have been abetted with the help of Robert Mueller and Rod Rosenstein (see NRO articles, by Andy McCarthy and David French - Andy C. McCarthy: http://www.nationalreview.com/article/452972/uranium-one-deal-obama-administration-doj-hillary-clinton-racketeering And by David French: http://www.nationalreview.com/article/453104/russia-dossier-story-clinton-lies-media-irresponsibility-democratic-moral-blindness). The real investigations are just getting off the ground – likely because the Russian-Trump collusion cannot be sustained if there isn’t any wrongdoing, and after all most a full year, there isn’t a thing, but smoke… Senator Grassley called today for a 2nd Special Counsel; hopefully, a second counsel will be appointed. So my thought – upon seeing your blog-post, and Phil Hands ‘list of Trump’s “lies”’ (they are not lies if Trump holds them to be true; additionally, Phil calls what Phil hold’s to be wrong advocacies and wrong opinion’s lies… Confusing wrong advocacies and opinions with demonstrably false claims is either ignorance or malice…) – I thought them both attempts to distract. Distraction – of oneself and others - is an alternative course to the unpalatable acknowledging truth, and admitting error; made tremendously more unpalatable when one must acknowledge that a man - one finds detestable - has been unfairly impugned.

Our thought regarding your wonderful caricature was that it was a projection into the future – perhaps 20 years hence – whereby you were attempting to shame Trump opponents to be as Joe Welch… Your daughters may be sages Paul, but as things are today projected into the future we have a difficult time imagining many daughters knowing their father’s. And we have come to believe – although we would like not to believe – that “cant” is your modus operandi. As a Catholic you should know truth, good and morality are inseparable (one not need be Catholic, or Christian to know such things, but any informed Catholic must acknowledge such things. Dividing the “good” from the “truth,” and the “moral” is where lies: “cant.”); one of the things which separate social-political Left from Right is the Left’s willingness to utilize an evil means to achieve a good end; the Leftist is fine with damning/characterizing the Right’s moral circumspection as cant, but the Right is not worried about money (and serving Plutocrats as you so often intimate), they are worried that the social-welfare system will continue to teach (I want to take care of the disenfranchised – send what money I can to charities e.g., Feed the Poor, Cross International, St. Jude’s, Operation Smile, but I object to the moral view of the social-scientist, viz: morality is an empty term i.e., meaningless; thus the social-welfare system teaches/operates value-free i.e., ‘if it feels good, do it!’) others that the Christian family model is passé, and that is what was meant by little girls will most likely not know their fathers in the future; such is the trend, Paul and I don’t see anything changing; do you?

I haven’t dismissed a thing Donald Trump has done, but when worldview of his accusers is devoid of objective morality, it makes it difficult to believe allegations emanating from people that hold truth as: “That which advances one’s power, destroys one’s enemies.” The social-political Left deny a priori (consciously or sentimentally i.e., some understand philosophically their denial of the Perennial Philosophy and are not bothered by the contradiction, they are pragmatic in their nihilism; power is their end. Others just enlist into the Left’s weltanschauung via emotional seduction…) objective right and wrong, and thus their consciences are free to destroy whosoever is necessary to destroy with impunity and perhaps with glee… If Trump is shown to be a molester, a rapist, or what have you, he needs to be removed from the Presidency and then subjected to the laws which deal with such crimes. I’m all for the wrongdoer being given justice, and I don’t care whether they are social-political Right or Left. What I am opposed to is maligning people that are offensive – even extremely offensive - but innocent of what allegations are leveled against them by people that confuse feelings with morality. As it is the very people that apologized for Clinton – so he could remain in office, and avoid prosecution – that are attempting to reify allegations against Donald Trump; that too is exemplary of cant.

Your “nuclear button” is nonsense – another distraction; the POTUS does not launch, and cannot launch, nuclear weapons on a whim, or by his lonesome… If Trump attempts something which recklessly imperils the USA others would stop him/expose him.

I didn’t mention patriotism Paul, you did, but my definition likely differs significantly from yours; my read of the U.S. Constitution understands the document to incorporate the Declaration of Independence in the Preamble and in the 5th Amendment; thus any reading of the document which contravenes the natural law, tosses – via logical implication - God aside as well. Patriots ought to understand human nature as untrustworthy and seek – as the Founders sought to do – divided/separated Government. I reject ideology, so I’d have a hard time putting it aside, and I’m a registered Federalist because – as I’ve written you before – hold that the Constitution of the United States (ratified in 1789) and the Bill of Rights needed only one additional amendment, viz: the abolishment of slavery and universal suffrage for all naturalized citizens of the States. Trump didn’t make abortion more accessible, and he didn’t promote sodomy and mental illness i.e., LGBTQ as a normal/alternative lifestyles; the arguments supporting such things are ideological; these advocacies are dressed up in the apparel-of-science, but no matter how fine the attire, a male has a male reproductive organ, and women have the equipment to produce offspring. Abortion is murder! Although, if there is no creative intelligent ordering principle which transcends material existence then abortion is not murder and there isn’t a natural order, but we wouldn’t be able to know such things, because absent a transcendent intelligence, knowledge would be a chimera. Meat cannot think!

When you explain to me what you mean by “evil” and then relate the term to Trump, but exempt Obama (he advocated Godlessness – if you will meaninglessness, as all materialist so advocate… Obama, Bill and Hillary Clinton, and most that subscribe to the DNC platform consciously – or unconsciously – deny there exists an objective moral order, they deny God, that is really close to a definition of “evil”) it is more cant! I may need to learn how to write – See Dick Run. See Jane Run. See Spot Run… - but some of us would benefit greatly from a logic class.

How do Trump supporters view women? You seem to have homogenized people through their support for a diverse agenda; this is not the same as seeing the commonality in principle. Ideologues share a common-ground which denies an objective moral order, and that is why their means of achieving their goals is not as important as achieving their goals. If one must defer to an objective moral code, then one cannot follow, or support, a good end, if the means of achieving such an end are evil…

We could write so much more, but we need to hit the sack…

Take care, Paul!

If I misunderstood your position/s, I apologize!

Hope you are well!

Sincerely,

tjd

Thinker's Post
Paul A Duginski
October 27, 2017 at 1:41 pm

Thomas:

I managed to slog through only the first portion of your screed which, although tedious and opaque as usual, was quite funny. You’re either caricaturing the Trump White House’s desperate efforts to distract attention from their collusion with Russia, aware that the baying of Robert Mueller’s bloodhounds is drawing ever closer, or you’re a paid shill who is not conscious of how ridiculous you sound. The latter would put you in the same class as Sarah Huckabee Sanders and other clowns who traipse daily across our television screens, toting the Trump line.

Sorry, you could pile up articles from the National Review or other biased mouth organs as thick as phone books, but you will not persuade me or most sentient people. That goes for entertainers such as Fox’s Sean Hannity, who belabors the loopy conspiracy theories as if he personally has skin in the game. If you want to impress me, show me articles from mainstream objective media outlets. That could include straight news stories from Rupert Murdoch’s Wall Street Journal, if you wish (not editorial page articles, though.)

I know, I know, Trump dismisses all of them as “fake news.” Thomas, I’m going to ask you to put on your thinking cap and try really, really hard to concentrate on why he might do that. Do you think it might be because the reports have been devastatingly spot-on and dangerously close to the truth? Ya think?

Okay, now take a rest. I don’t want you to overdo it. If you practice thinking every day, though, I promise that you’ll get better and better at it. I realize it’s much harder than letting Sean Hannity or Rush Limbaugh (does anybody under 70 still listen to that buffoon?) unscrew the lid on your head and pour raw sewage into it.

But a little thinking every day will build strength.

Remember Milo of Croton, who lifted a calf every day. As the calf grew, so did Milo’s strength. Pretty soon you’ll have the strength to recognize bull when you see it.

Then you’ll be like Jeff Flake, Bob Corker, John McCain, George W. Bush and any number of Republicans, Democrats and independents — real Americans — all across the spectrum who realize what a wacko we have in the White House, and who are willing to do their patriotic duty and stand up to him.

Be well, Thomas, and try doing some genuinely independent thinking. I guarantee that you’ll learn to like it.

— P.

UPDATE: CNN reported Friday night that a federal grand jury in Washington has approved the first charges in the investigation led by special counsel Robert Mueller, according to sources briefed on the matter.

The charges are still sealed under orders from a federal judge. Plans were prepared Friday for anyone charged to be taken into custody as soon as Monday. It is unclear what the charges are.

No wonder the Trump people, their apologists and sycophants are getting so squirrelly. They undoubtedly knew that something was coming down the pike pretty soon. They've been trying to gin up bogus scandals, mainly aimed at Hillary, as distractions. Sounds like shades of another famous loser, the desperately breathless but ultimately futile Benghazi investigations.

When Gen. John F. Kelly spoke about empty barrels he should have been talking about the obnoxiously noisy ones who flack for Trump.

Thomas J Donegan
October 28, 2017 at 10:00 pm

Hi Again, Paul!

As we start we think it right to indicate that I hold with the prophet Ezekiel that each of us is morally obligated (this obligation holds for the atheist as well as the theist; God will hold each accountable) to warn others away from actions which are contrary to the good, the true, the moral – three inseparable concepts; as the prophet asserts in Ezekiel 33:7-9 7 “Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the people of Israel; so hear the word I speak and give them warning from me. 8 When I say to the wicked, ‘You wicked person, you will surely die,’ and you do not speak out to dissuade them from their ways, that wicked person will die for their sin, and I will hold you accountable for their blood. 9 But if you do warn the wicked person to turn from their ways and they do not do so, they will die for their sin, though you yourself will be saved.”

Well Paul, you may associate me with whomsoever you like, but my claims have little - to nothing - to do with those individuals/entities you mention; even Andy McCarthy’s pieces are only validating things which I conjectured/asserted/speculated over the last 8-10 months (e.g., February 17, 2017 "The Elijah Cummings Test and Special Prosecutors," and March 2, 2017 "If Attorney General Jeff Sessions Goes, Who Should Replace Him?", also: March 4, 2017 "Is it Sedition or Treason? What Ought to be Done?" and there's also: The Connection the Russian "involvement" in the Presidential Election, and Susan Rice from April 5, 2017, and a number more recent posts...) – and in some instances, the comments made - in a number of tête-à-têtes - to/with you (e.g., your blog-post: "Pointy Dunce Hat" July 14, 2017, your June 14, 2017 "Stonewalling Session," or "Lock Him Up" May 30, 2017)... So such posts may indicate a certain amount of independent thought, but such things may also be easily dismissed by those sentimentally ordered…

What end would be served by distracting from the ostensible collusion between Trump’s campaign and Russia? “A paid shill?” It would be nice to be remunerated for my views, but my views express my fulfilling my obligation to warn my fellow human (ala Ezekiel 33: 7-9, as quoted above). What would my interest be aligning myself with – or against - Trump, his Whitehouse, Sarah Huckabee Sanders? What interest is there for me to align myself for - or against – any of the others that you mention? I’ll try to answer that succinctly and actually intimate what cant is, what patriotism is, and explain what Catholics ought-to-be (since we both profess Catholicism; it is from my understanding of the Christian faith from whence my interest in society/politics is derived and obligated...) in the process; this because such concepts and concerns are inseparable from concrete action… I want to thank you for your response; some of us - capable of thinking - often need to be confronted with subtle inanity so as to articulate wisdom…

And we note - for the benefit of Bob Butler (bestthinking.com Administrator), in case he thinks I'm too rough on you, or you should decide to complain to him; the subject of "thinking" - or the intimation that I do not think independently, or think at all - was raised by you, so you shouldn't mind if I present you with number of apropos thinking exercises (these will allow you demonstrate your intellectual prowess, as you attempt to reconcile the inherent, and glaring contradictions between the principles you implicitly claim to avow, and those which your advocacies indicate... So we'll be interested in your means of "squaring circles"...). Note that we do not mind anyone taking swipes at us, but Mr. Butler has taken me off my blog 3 times on your behalf (whether you initiated such actions or we do not know...), once for a full month. So I wouldn't want Bob Butler to shut down my blog because my response lays bare what seems to be a pretty obvious cant running through your core... I do not cry or whine if somebody can show me to be wrong, ignorant, mentally challenged - or even just beats-my-ass to a bloody-mess via their sublime intellect; I do mind people that whine when somebody gives them a taste-of-their-own-medicine... I would need to thank the individual for correcting my ignorance, and slapping me down for my hubris! That said, we begin...

Existence is either organized intelligently, or it isn’t Paul. If it is organized intelligently, then behind - and transcending - existence is an intelligence, and that intelligence is God. This is the ground of those of the social-political Right. We will look at the implications of this in a future blog-post; for now, we denote the opposing view which represents the dominant cultural worldview, viz:

If one thinks - or believes - existence only appears ordered and even appears intelligently ordered, but actually believe that such appearance is illusory and that existence is not ordered intelligently, then (then what follows wouldn't have any enduring, or objective, meaning*), dynamic organic processes - known as humans - developed through random chance (natural selection) are endowed with the ability to fashion conceptual chimeras which we impose upon that which is. Historically, such fantasies were nearly universally believed, but modern science has freed the educated and the informed of such superstitious nonsense (this position is the ground for the social-political Left)... That modern view - held by so many avant-gardes 'intellectual' is riddled with contradictions and is an instance 'eating one's cake and having it as well.' Such adherents are described by Chesterton in Heretics.

* Thus, adherents to such a view, that believe and understand such to be the case (that an objective intelligent order is merely how things appear) do what they can to obtain power - using the disenfranchised to obtain power through the manipulation of those that actually have real concern for the welfare of the disenfranchised. For those holding to such a view - because their understanding is such that the only meaning or value existing is the one imposed by those able to impose such meaning and value; to people such as these, the weak and disadvantaged are a means to obtain power as their end/goal. People such as these subscribe to Machiavelli and to Nietzsche – even if they never read, or heard of those authors.

Now there are those which subscribe to such views purely by faith in those major proponents of such views i.e., many, many people subscribe to the social-political Left's position on faith alone; they place their faith, for example in Richard Dawkins, the evolutionary biologist from Oxford University. Others are attracted emotionally to social-political Left; not only because the Left claims that they care so much for the disadvantaged, but also because the Left spends most of their waking hours casting aspersions upon the social-political Right; arguing that the Right's circumspect/cautious pursuit of social-amelioration demonstrates their hypocrisy - or "cant." A Leftist is free to say anything because they believe that "right" and "wrong" are only social constructs, and thus fungible/mutable. Given that freedom (i.e., given they are free of moral restraints) - and knowing their opponents are constrained by immutable moral principles, and knowing that their target audience is generally ignorant of such things - they mercilessly impugn those of the social-political Right; such seems to be your wont, Paul…?

Now since you claim yourself a Catholic - my friend (and I think you and I could be friends) - that seems to demonstrate CANT, but perhaps a more explicit and concrete example is necessary? Thus, in 2012 - during the Presidential Campaign - Brit Hume (Fox News) interviewed Paul Ryan - asking him a number of questions, to include Ryan's understanding of Ayn Rand; you caricatured Ryan (October 10, 2012, the post title: "Lyin' Ryan"), and venomously impugned him - as is your wont! We brought the interview to your attention - on your post, and explained that Ryan pointed out that he parted company with Rand in a number of areas because she was an atheist, and that he - as a Catholic - could not agree with her where she differed with the Church. You doubled down on Ryan, in subsequent posts, although we had informed you where - in Hume's 11 minutes 46 second interview - to listen, but you disregarded that information, and in subsequent posts you doubled down on Ryan, again claiming him an epigone/acolyte of Ayn Rand, and a guisard Catholic i.e., one practicing cant behind the mask of Catholicism. One has a hard time not inferring that you don't care what is true, Paul...? And again, that seems to be the conduct of naked cant, or so here is your first thought exercise: Perhaps you can demonstrate your thinking ability, and extract yourself from the box of self-indictment? How can you portray Paul Ryan as embracing something that he publically, explicitly and unequivocally disavows? You even mentioned - in your post - Ryan's need for confession (For non-Catholics “confession” is a Sacrament in - and through - which Catholics acknowledge their sins before a priest, who can impose penance, and – by the authority of Jesus Christ – grant absolution…), because you claim he is lying? Seems a bit of "bearing false witness" on your part Paul...? Thought exercise # 2: If that is not bearing false witness, Paul what is it? Did you think to confess such conduct? If not, if you do not take such things seriously, as a Catholic, then: thought exercise # 3: – then why claim yourself a Catholic? Thought exercise # 4: What order of importance do you give the inalienable Rights Jefferson delineates in the Declaration of Independence? If you subordinate “Life” to either “Liberty,” or to “the Pursuit of Happiness,” or to both – as you must, given your avowal of voting for Bill Clinton, and for Obama, and your support of Hillary - how can do so as a thinking being, and a Catholic? The dead neither possess Liberty nor are able to pursue anything at all… Thought exercise # 5: Why do you complain about the “coarsening of the culture,” when the social-welfare programs which inundate our culture, and given full-throated support by the likes of Hillary, Bill Clinton, Barack Obama et al – do not make moral judgments, except that making moral judgments are immoral – this organically promotes: “do whatever feels good.” Isn’t silence on most things moral a tacit approval? So why – by your votes, and talents do you advocate for those things which coarsen our culture, and are so contrary – in method – to the method by which one ought to attend to the “least-of-His-brethren?” These simple exercises of thought are rendered to help you develop your powers of illation, and they are offered so as to engender in you an appreciation for the glaring contradiction inveterate casting of aspersions is to your Catholicism. Of course, you can disavow Catholicism and Jesus Christ, then problem solved, at least in the short-term…

When apprised of such behavior – and the one we indicated, regarding Paul Ryan is only one an example of a habitual practice – we think we detect a mask of the hypocrite? Are we wrong? Oh, yes! You do prefer the term: "cant?" Can you, or can’t you get the CANT of that, Paul? It isn’t that odd that you have an affinity for the term “cant” – often we denounce those very things which most animate us… Perhaps people may hold that my incessant rails against the social-political Leftist indicate a blind moral lapse on my part? Perhaps such is the case, and perhaps someone may do this writer a good deed, and bring such blindness to my attention…? Saint Thomas Aquinas asserts: “The greatest good you can do your fellow-man is to lead them to the truth.” We hold with St. Thomas!

So we address your note point-by-point…

“Sorry, you could pile up articles from the National Review or other biased mouth organs as thick as phone books, but you will not persuade me or most sentient people. That goes for entertainers such as Fox’s Sean Hannity, who belabors the loopy conspiracy theories as if he personally has skin in the game. If you want to impress me, show me articles from mainstream objective media outlets. That could include straight news stories from Rupert Murdoch’s Wall Street Journal, if you wish (not editorial page articles, though.)” Paul Dugnski

Regarding the alteration of your view/s; the sentimentally possessed need their sentiments altered before they are able to be changed!

I know, I know, Trump dismisses all of them as “fake news.” Thomas, I’m going to ask you to put on your thinking cap and try really, really hard to concentrate on why he might do that. Do you think it might be because the reports have been devastatingly spot-on and dangerously close to the truth? Ya think?” Paul Duginski

Screwed my thinking cap on – as tightly as I could - Paul! And you could be spot on! You can also be absolutely wrong, and Trump hasn’t colluded with anyone; time will tell…

“Okay, now take a rest. I don’t want you to overdo it. If you practice thinking every day, though, I promise that you’ll get better and better at it. I realize it’s much harder than letting Sean Hannity or Rush Limbaugh (does anybody under 70 still listen to that buffoon?) unscrew the lid on your head and pour raw sewage into it.” Paul Duginski

You always say the nicest things, Paul! Actually – because my head is cubed, and flat on all sides, it is not possible to “unscrew the lid on my head.”

“But a little thinking every day will build strength.” Paul Duginski

Paul, you write and speak aphorism! When I read you, I think Nietzsche, only he can match your wit.

“Remember Milo of Croton, who lifted a calf every day. As the calf grew, so did Milo’s strength. Pretty soon you’ll have the strength to recognize bull when you see it.” Paul Duginski

Do you really think, there is hope for me, Paul? You’re not attempting to by-me-off, are you?

“Then you’ll be like Jeff Flake, Bob Corker and any number of Republicans, Democrats and independents — real Americans — all across the spectrum who realize what a wacko we have in the White House, and who are willing to do their patriotic duty and stand up to him.“ Paul Duginski

I don’t have any disregard for Flake, Corker et al, but I do not celebrate most humans, irrespective of what side-of-the political spectrum/aisle they may dwell. I do think that those that do not embrace an agenda, should honestly articulate their views, and let the voters know their views… If Flake, Corker, and McCain had let their actual views be aired before they were elected, they wouldn’t have been elected.

“Be well, Thomas, and try doing some genuinely independent thinking. I guarantee that you’ll learn to like it.” Paul Duginski

Each and every word that was written above - except, of course, those of yours which we copied and pasted - was written under the direct influence of all the individuals that you claim to do my thinking; not a single word, not a single syllable, or a single letter of the alphabet, originated from the solid-block-of-lead (measuring 12" * 12" * 12") to which my ears are affixed, and upon which I wear a cardboard- box (vinyl when it rains) of slightly larger dimensions in lieu of a hat.

Thomas J. Donegan

guildma@msn.com

Thinker's Post
Paul A Duginski
October 29, 2017 at 2:29 am

Thomas —

I have never complained to Bob Butler or asked him to shut down your blog. In fact, I don’t believe I have ever even mentioned you to Bob. You flatter yourself if you think I talk to him about you.

The quality of your writing is embarrassing, and Bob is extremely kind to allow you to continue to blog on BestThinking.com.

I would never attempt to have you or anyone silenced. (You may be aware of the irony — trying to silence writers is actually something your hero Donald Trump has proposed.)

In fact, you may have noticed that over the years I have largely ignored your comments. That’s how Internet trolls are generally treated. It may be best if I return to that policy.

Out of charity, I have recommended that you take some basic writing classes at your local community college. I hope you’ll consider following my advice.

— P.

Thomas J Donegan
October 29, 2017 at 6:24 am

Hi Paul!

I didn't claim you complained to Bob Butler, I wrote " Note that we do not mind anyone taking swipes at us, but Mr. Butler has taken me off my blog 3 times on your behalf (whether you initiated such actions or we do not know...), once for a full month. So I wouldn't want Bob Butler to shut down my blog because my response lays bare what seems to be a pretty obvious cant running through your core... I do not cry or whine if somebody can show me to be wrong, ignorant, mentally challenged - or even just beats-my-ass to a bloody-mess via their sublime intellect; I do mind people that whine when somebody gives them a taste-of-their-own-medicine..."

Such was a question, not an accusation. The instances in which he shut down my blog, were those in which I may have wryly questioned your ego, and intelligence; something you do regularly with those upon which you train your pens/keyboard. 3rd Party judges thought my intimations were mild by comparison with your gibes... As it is, I was removed 3 times - once for a month - because I intimated sardonically, without explicitly stating, that you were the wisest of the wise, at least in your view of yourself. Consequentially, I was removed for a full 30 days.

As it is, I didn't expect you to take up any of my challenges i.e., thought exercises... It would be interesting to see you try to explain how you can square your maligning of such individuals as Paul Ryan - whom you claimed needed to go to confession - when you were clearly misrepresenting his words. Bearing false witness wasn't removed from the 10 Commandments, was it?

Trump is not my hero, but he doesn't promote - via policy - things which weaken the remnant of the Republic, at least not yet. I don't mind anyone making claims against Trump or anyone in the political spectrum unless they are making false claims. Most often you lionize Leftists and vilify those on the Right. I understand caricature, but purposely misrepresentation of what an individual has said, or done is done far too often; that coarsens public dialogue. And I cannot defend Trump - and do not want to defend - his vile characterizations. However, sometimes he is right.

As it is - as when we had to correct you on the meaning of "nihilism" - you side-step any deeper discussion with a barb; in that instance, you acknowledge your error as you accused me of "cant."

My view is that ubiquitous moral characters will - given the liberty to choose - order society as best it can be ordered. Thus, Those things which promote objective morality and virtuous souls are the things for which I advocate. The disenfranchised should be cared for by us - as individuals - and when that gets too be too onerous, the Church and private-sector entities ordered in virtue, rather than profit should be there to assist. Our social institutions should be ordered so as to produce such a society. Ubiquitous Government - driven by value-free principles - inevitably treats human need and suffering as a means to their end, which is power.

Take care Paul!

tjd

Bob Butler
October 29, 2017 at 7:39 pm

It is extraordinarily rare that advocates of any position change the other's mind, but those of us on the sidelines can often learn a lot from a postive vigorous debate. However, few will sit through a negative rancorous slug fest. The Best Thinking Participation Policy (PP) is designed to keep it positive and NOT personal.

Donegan has been suspended multiple times for violation of the PP, (primarily getting too personal) as is phrohibited as described in the following section of the PP:

"Due to the difficulty of anticipating the sensitivity of others, the best approach is always to comment on the message, not the messenger. For example: "The research may not be reliable" can be OK if done respectfully; "the researchers may not be reliable" is never a good idea. Avoid qualitative characterizations about others, even characterizations which you think are positive. Remember that one person’s praise is another person’s scorn."

Once again this is getting too personal and negative and there is a limit to the number of temporary suspensions before it's a permanent suspension, especially for the same thing. Please keep in mind there are others here and we appreciate succinct, positive, topic-focused debate. A cheerful closing doesn't offset hostility and rancor.

 

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It was a noble 10-year experiment, but it turns out that the writers with the best content are the least adept at the tech required to publish under our model, which in hindsight, makes perfect sense. If you are dedicating your life to becoming an expert in your specialty, you don’t have a lot of time left for figuring out publishing tech.

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