The Truth Matters

A positive news item I think worth sharing:

The Nobel Peace Prize was awarded Friday to two journalists, Maria Ressa of the Philippines, and Dmitri Muratov of Russia, for their indefatigable pursuit of the truth, in the face of the most severe efforts to suppress it.

According to the New York Times:

“The journalists…were recognized for “their courageous fight for freedom of expression, which is a precondition for democracy and lasting peace.”

“They are representatives of all journalists who stand up for this ideal in a world in which democracy and freedom of the press face increasingly adverse conditions,” the committee said in a statement released after the announcement in Oslo…

“The Nobel committee chose from 329 candidates, one of the largest pools in the 126-year history of the prize. Those who had been considered favorites for this year included climate change activists, political dissidents and scientists whose work helped fight the Covid-19 pandemic.

In its citation, the committee said that “free, independent and fact-based journalism serves to protect against abuse of power, lies and war propaganda.”

“Without freedom of expression and freedom of the press,” the committee said, “it will be difficult to successfully promote fraternity between nations, disarmament and a better world order to succeed in our time.””

You know where this is going. Our own journalists are under attack from those who would try to undermine them, say they’re liars, declare them an enemy of the people. They refuse to believe, because the truth doesn’t fit their narrative. It’s not what they want to hear.

We must believe, we must support, we must champion these courageous people around the world who seek and report the facts, the truth, at whatever cost to their reputations, their careers, and in some instances, their very llves.

The Nobel Prize Committee thinks enough of journalism to see it as important to the peace process. So should we.

What to do? Whom to Believe?

A parable for our time.
Larry

petersironwood

What to do? What to do? 

Everyone seems about to go for the throat. Many people are not sure whom to trust. Should they trust doctors who spend years and years learning about calculus, chemistry, biology and then more years in Medical school learning about anatomy, physiology, and medicine and then more years as an intern and resident? Or, instead, maybe how about believing a yelling, screaming talk show host? Hard to tell? Maybe no-one ever taught us how to tell liars from truth tellers. There is no simple formula that will guarantee us to be 100% accurate, but maybe we can think together about it. 

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(Processed photo from one I took on Maui.)

Sam sit alone at the local sandwich shop, and began contemplating whether to have dessert after his nice lunch. It was a club sandwich, already a lot of calories, but what the hell, he thinks.

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Time to Sign Up

Tokyo Sand at Political Charge submitted this post last week with some helpful ways to get yourself and others registered to vote. National Voter Registration Day is tomorrow (9/28). With all that’s being done to try and suppress voting these days, getting as many of us registered as possible is absolutely vital. Get the word out.

Keep On Rockin’

I got to thinking about all the rock and roll stars I’ve been lucky enough to see perform live in my life. Maybe you won’t be impressed by this list, but I kinda was.

Elton John. Billy Joel. The Eagles. Bruce Springsteen. Steely Dan. Rush. Neil Diamond. Stevie Wonder. Dan Fogelberg. Roger Waters. Phil Collins. Cher (with Cyndi Lauper). U2. The Doobie Brothers. Cat Stevens. The Allman Brothers Band, Joe Walsh, and The Marshall Tucker Band (together).

Oh, and N’Sync, with two of my nieces. Shriek!!!

Many of these guys, I’ve seen twice, and in Elton and Billy’s case, four times each.

Then, of course, there are the ones who got away, like Genesis, Wings, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd and Stevie Ray Vaughn, to name just a few.

Oh, and Johnny Cash.

Yes, Johnny Cash, my first musical hero. I would have loved to see him live.

I thoroughly enjoyed every concert I attended. (Well, not so much N’Sync, but my nieces loved it.) There’s nothing like the energy at a live rock concert. When it’s good, the performers and the audience feed off each other to make an unforgettable experience.

If you were to ask me what my favorite show was, I’d give you different answers, for different reasons. The easy answer is Elton, because he’s my favorite artist, from a long way back. Billy Joel, because he’s another piano player, like I once was (though nowhere near that caliber).

For professionalism and virtuosity, Steely Dan and Rush take the honors. For the sheer spectacle, I gotta give it to Cher and Roger Waters. Those weren’t just concerts, they were events.

The Eagles were and are my favorite band vocally. Their harmony just shines.

Stevie was just incredible. He is so musically gifted. He’s really one of a kind.

But nobody, and I mean nobody, gives more of himself onstage than The Boss. Bruce Springsteen just lays it all out there every time, and the E Street Band is always equal to the task. It is amazing to watch.

It’s great to see live shows coming back now, after going missing last year. There are still some restrictions in place, though. My sister-in-law and her daughter are going to a concert tonight, but they have to show either proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test result from the last 24 hours. It’s a new world, folks.

But it’s still a chance for fans to go see their favorite artists, sing along jubilantly, and just forget the world for a few hours and be only about the music. And that’s worth something.

Rock on, y’all.

Critical Race Theory is not about being anti-white

For those of you concerned about Critical Race Theory (CRT), here’s a quick and easy explanation from an authority on the subject. For your education.
Larry

IISWHITE

       I have been studying, writing, and teaching on the subject of whiteness and systemic racism— Critical Race Theory — for almost twenty years. For the critics and detractors, let me share with you what I know and what I do.  First and foremost, let me start with what Critical Race Theory (CRT) is not. It is not “white people bad” and “black people good”.  It is not about making the white kids feel personal shame or personal responsibility for all the injustices that Black and Brown people have suffered and continue to suffer. Never, in any classroom discussion is it argued that white people do not suffer.  No one is saying that all white people are rich or that white people do not know extreme poverty.   In fact, I try to avoid using the words “white privilege” and “white supremacy” because they are…

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The Final Frontier

Well, it’s official, now.

My wife and I are both retired. Her last day of employment was Tuesday.

Mine, unfortunately, was March 16, 2020. I’ve just gone from collecting unemployment to collecting monthly pension. Which my wife will now also collect. Along with the money we’ve saved over the years, we should be in good shape financially. (We hope.)

We’ve kind of been rehearsing for this, actually. She’s been using vacation time for a while, now, so we’re already used to not working. And I think we like it!

Not that we haven’t been busy. It seems like there’s something that needs to be done all the time. Good thing we’re not working, I guess.

We don’t have plans to travel anytime soon, COVID still as rampant as it is. We can’t see getting on a plane and being in such close quarters with a bunch of strangers who may or may not be vaccinated. Same with a train. We would like to eventually go some places, though. Maybe someday, traveling this way will be safe again.

And driving somewhere just takes too long, and we don’t want to be away from our cats for that long. You pet owners understand.

Anyway, in the meantime, we’re just enjoying not having to go to bed at a certain time, or get up at a certain time, watching TV, going out with friends, spending quality time with the cats…you know, taking it easy.

Who knows, we may take up a hobby at some point, or do some volunteer work; you never know.

But our new chapter has begun, and we’ll just see where it leads. Together.

All you guys out there still working, have a happy Labor Day weekend. We don’t have it off, anymore.

Take care, everyone.