USS Pueblo Incident + 50: An unresolved issue with North Korea

USS Pueblo Incident + 50:  An unresolved issue with North Korea

The more things change the more they stay the same.  That particular aphorism may be wearing pretty thin of late but it sure fits this particular anniversary.  Members of the “below 50” demographic  may remember reading or hearing about it in the Cold War chapter of a high school U.S. History course.  Yours Truly was a wide-eyed third grader at Kendall Elementary when America learned of the seizure of the USS Pueblo by the North Koreans on the evening news.  Fifty years ago today that aforementioned Cold War became very hot when naval and air forces of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea fired on, boarded, took the Captain, officers and crew prisoner, seized the vessel and took it to Wonsan.  This action was undertaken by the DPRK forces...

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Endings, beginnings, aspirations and expectations

Endings, beginnings, aspirations and expectations

This week as I transitioned into living in 2018, I experienced a deep and visceral sensation that I am sitting stationary on a huge existential conveyor belt being slowly but forever pulled forward on a great master timeline.  So many times in my life the month of January has been one of endings and beginnings, both literal and metaphorical.  I remember forty years ago the passing of my last living grandparent on New Year’s morning 1978.  The following day the Barry Switzer coached Oklahoma Sooners were dealt a humiliating drubbing in the Orange Bowl at the hands of the Lou Holtz coached Arkansas Razorbacks.  The current January is showing signs of continuing in such a tradition.  Although nobody close to me died this week, on New Year’s Night, my...

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Finishing Volume 43 and reflecting on 2017

Finishing Volume 43 and reflecting on 2017

As the current year’s final hours tick by, I wax nostalgic about the binder full of daily entries I have compiled since January 1st.  The December 31st entry will bear the cataloged number of 43-365 and will mark the end of my 43rd volume of daily records, a personal activity which I began in the middle of my sophomore year of high school on January 1st, 1975.  This dedication to what is viewed mostly as a constructive personal discipline may impress a few but for the most part the feedback I have received is wrought with indifference.  This is likely due to the boring life that I tend to lead, a fact that I readily concede.  I mean just how interesting can one describe a middle aged divorced male stuck in a career rut that gets repeated over and over? ...

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Movie review: Darkest Hour

Movie review:  Darkest Hour

“Never, never, never give up!”—–Sir Winston Churchill I recall reading a fair amount about Winston Churchill in my secondary and post secondary history courses but most of the information contained in the required readings dealt more with his statesman’s acts as Britain’s Prime Minister and his dealings with Presidents Roosevelt and Truman.  I do not recall any of those readings delving into the actual life of the man beyond his demographics, education, military and government service.  Director Joe Wright and screenwriter Anthony McCarten have teamed to create an excellent political drama about the crisis days of May 1940 in their film Darkest Hour.  In their depiction of the British Parliament’s process of selecting a...

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Rules of self-governance at age 230

Rules of self-governance at age 230

Happy Constitution Day to all my friends, lovers of reason and readers of this humble blog.  It was the product of several months of intense negotiation between delegates representing wide and varied common and opposing interests but it was on this day exactly two hundred and thirty years ago which was a Monday that the final product was presented for approval to the body of the Constitutional Convention of the United States assembled in the Pennsylvania State House.  To say it was the finest work ginned out by the ultimate sausage factory of its day in an understatement. In the end only 39 of the original 55 delegates signed their name to it but few if any were likely completely satisfied with what has become an enduring system of rules and law of a nation still...

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A moral and humanitarian failure of leadership

A moral and humanitarian failure of leadership

What benefits any person, group or nation to gain all the material wealth in the known universe but to ultimately lose the very essence of the core of their own soul?  That is one existential question which Yours Truly has been forced by public statements and actions (or lack thereof) made by certain government officials to ruminate upon during my fortnight hiatus from blogging.  Even being on vacation visiting an elderly relative in San Diego and reconnecting with two old shipmates could not insulate me from all the air getting sucked out of the media atmosphere with evermore sensational news items emanating from the White House with seemingly every news cycle.  The incumbent *President has been masterful at playing the distraction card, especially to those he...

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