We are more than our political identities

We should draw a bright line between the personal and the political. Most of us are complex. Reducing the whole person to one dimension, especially a political one, is hateful and disrespectful to our common humanity.

We do not make friends discussing our difference in face-to-face in dialogue. If we dig deep into our differences, we just find ourselves in a hole. On the other hand, we can almost always find common ground with almost anybody and work together. This is were friends are made. We make friends shoulder-to-shoulder, working toward common aspirations. We can disagree on most things and still work together toward a common goal. After we do that for a while, some of the earlier disagreement seem trivial.

And in the long run political disagreements are trivial compared to the totality of our lives. We individuals are just not that critical to the big picture. We do not need to obliterate our individual political foes.

I developed my philosophy during a more than thirty-year career in diplomacy. MOST of the people we work with overseas disagree with us on most issues. The main job of a successful diplomat is not to talk through differences but rather to look for points of potential agreement and common goals and then expand on them. Of course, this outlook is not limited to diplomats. Anybody who has been in any sort of long term relations knows how that avoidance and denial of differences is often a valid strategy on the way to sustainable agreements.

Successful negotiators know that when they have an "impossible" impasse, they often need to set that aside and look for agreement on other areas. Once the ball is rolling downhill, after that we have learned some trust and developed momentum, a solution for that big issue sometimes emerges. Maybe the disagreeing parties find that the one big issue just is not that big after all. On the other hand, if they decide in advance that they just cannot get past the big issue, they can be right. They will also be losers.

I have long said that the American nation is greater than the American government and the American government is greater than the current American president. This IS the greatness of America. We have been a people more pragmatic than political. We are not our leaders; we are not our government. There is much more to all of us. Politics is one part of our life - ONE part, usually not the most important. When friends and family are remembering your legacy, they are unlikely to mention your voting history.

Posted by Christine & John at September 21, 2017 10:20 PM
Comments
Comment #420008

Thank you.

Posted by: Warren Porter at September 22, 2017 6:21 AM
Comment #420010

You’re right, on a personal level. We wouldn’t be talking to each other, face to face, like we do here on WatchBlog.

Personal level aside, let me ask you a question. You say:

Once the ball is rolling downhill, after that we have learned some trust and developed momentum, a solution for that big issue sometimes emerges.

My question is, “When was the last time the debt ceiling wasn’t raised?”.

It seems negotiating with Democratics is simply Democratics eventually getting what they want, or denying what stands in their way. How is that successful negotiating? Where is the solution in repeatedly caving in to Democratic’s demands?


Posted by: Weary Willie at September 22, 2017 10:04 AM
Comment #420012
I developed my philosophy during a more than thirty-year career in diplomacy. MOST of the people we work with overseas disagree with us on most issues. The main job of a successful diplomat is not to talk through differences but rather to look for points of potential agreement and common goals and then expand on them. Posted by Christine & John at September 21, 2017 10:20 PM

This sounds like an exact quote from HRC’s book, Hard Choices.

Posted by: ohrealy at September 22, 2017 10:31 AM
Comment #420013

Weary

My opinion is that the debt ceiling is an artificial and kind of silly artifact. The money is already borrowed. That was the operative issue. Saying later that it is too much is not useful or honest. It is like going to a restaurant, eating your food and only after that disputing the bill because you think you ate too much.

The debt ceiling should not even be an issue.We should just get rid of it.

Posted by: Christine & John at September 22, 2017 10:53 AM
Comment #420014

ohrealy

The difference is that I really do and I really did.

I am almost done with Hillary’s book and I have not found this kind of thing strong in her book. She is more about others agreeing with her. But I would welcome her.

Posted by: Christine & John at September 22, 2017 10:56 AM
Comment #420015

ohrealy

My mistake. I didn’t read “Hard Choices”. I am working through the “What Happened” audio book. Hillary herself narrates. Listening to her, you know what happened.

Posted by: Christine & John at September 22, 2017 11:02 AM
Comment #420017

The debt ceiling should not even be an issue.We should just get rid of it.
Posted by: Christine & John at September 22, 2017 10:53 AM

You bet, great idea. Credit card companies and banks should follow that logic and get rid of individual and corporate credit limits.

We all recognize how responsible congress has been with the “people’s” money. There is no reason for any restraint in spending or borrowing or pretending debt matters.

Some of us wonder how long, with an unlimited debt ceiling, before we acknowledge bankruptcy.

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 22, 2017 4:39 PM
Comment #420021

The federal debt could be erased by repealing the Federal Reserve Act. There’s a real sure way to get rid of the debt ceiling.

However, my point was that there was never a time when the debt ceiling wasn’t raised. All the hoopla surrounding the issue resembles a debate, but the results of that debate always comes down to the Democratics getting what they wanted, the ability to spend more money.

Not once have the Democratics said, “OK, we we’ll cut spending to avoid the dreaded default. Which is a lie. A default will never happen.


Posted by: Weary Willie at September 22, 2017 7:49 PM
Comment #420027

Yesterday, Trump called a young black quarterback protesting racial injustice a SOB. Now, I do not feel it is appropriate to behave disrespectfully; however, free speech is a right. Like Mohammed Ali and the Olympic athletes from 1968, the quarterback was making a political statement. And I am fine with that, even if I disagree with the choice he made.

Trump called him a son of a b****. He said the person exercising his right should be fired. Think about that. Trump never called the North Korean Leader an SOB. He would not criticize Putin under any circumstances, even as he denounced North Korea an Iran in a UN speech. And yet, Trump publicly called a young black man a son of a b****. The audience cheered.

Steph Curry said he voted against going to the White House for customary congratulations from the president after winning an NBA championship. Trump disinvited the Warriors (although an invitation had not been extended). LeBron James called Trump a “bum,” and said Trump dishonored the White House.

Trump is a racist. He shames the United States. In the future, I hope the entire country refuses to stand for the National Anthem and takes a knee until that utter disgrace of a man leaves office. And if that is not enough, I hope every professional team and every athlete, regardless of race, stands up against Trump. His deplorable supporters need to understand: racism is not acceptable. Agree or disagree with that young black quarterback, but he is exercising his most fundamental right, and we need to respect it.

Posted by: phx8 at September 23, 2017 6:14 PM
Comment #420028

““Wouldn’t you love to see,” the President asked, “one of these NFL owners when somebody disrespects our flag to say ‘get that son of a bitch off the field right now’?”

Racist?

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 23, 2017 6:38 PM
Comment #420029

If it takes every professional athlete in every sport taking a knee or refusing to visit the White House, eventually they will do it until people like Trump, that crowd in Alabama, and you understand.

Posted by: phx8 at September 23, 2017 8:02 PM
Comment #420030

phx8,

I think the point you made in Comment #420027 deserves reiteration. Remember when White Supremacists gathered in Charlottesville to protest alterations to a public park? Trump made sure to let us know that those white supremacists who did not personally participate in physical violence were “good people” despite the incredibly deplorable speech they exercised.

Donald Trump did not call any of the white supremacists in Charlottesville a SOB nor did he give these athletes the same benefit of the doubt that was extended to the white supremacists. Where is the reassurance that these athletes are “good people” in the same vein as the people in Charlottesville? The time is long past overdue here, and we must continue to call a spade a spade: Trump is evaluating people not by the content of their characters but by the color of their skin. There is no place for this racism in this country, which is why Republicans will lose terribly in November 2018.

Posted by: Warren Porter at September 23, 2017 9:08 PM
Comment #420031

phx8, in all that you couldn’t provide a link to a video of Donald Trump saying what you’re accusing him of saying?

WatchBlog will give you one link per comment, phx8. Use it wisely.

Posted by: Weary Willie at September 23, 2017 10:20 PM
Comment #420032

Where did Trump speak yesterday, phx8?

Posted by: Weary Willie at September 23, 2017 10:29 PM
Comment #420033

C’mon, phx8! Phrases like “We have to pass the bill to see what’s in it!” go down in history when they’re uttered!
Where’s your quote, phx8?

Posted by: Weary Willie at September 23, 2017 10:36 PM
Comment #420034
and we must continue to call a spade a spade

What?

Posted by: Weary Willie at September 23, 2017 10:49 PM
Comment #420035

You’re trying too hard in that one, Warren Porter.
Thanks.

Posted by: Weary Willie at September 23, 2017 10:52 PM
Comment #420037

Why does Donald Trump cpndemn black athletes’ free speech rights, but fail to raise similar objections when it comes to white supremacists?

Posted by: Warren Porter at September 24, 2017 8:40 AM
Comment #420043

WP, because he is a racist, or wants to appear to be one in this reality television show that he thinks he’s starring in. I wonder if undesirable alien Mark Burnett is helping him produce the show. I wish we could concentrate fully on what’s happening now, rather than always talking about the next election. It’s going to be quite a conundrum here with the governor’s race. The dems may nominate a richer guy named Pritzker, just to counter the Kochsucker millionaire rpblcn who’s in now.

pdx8, I think the era of professional sports teams going to the WH is over for the duration of this “presidency”. The POS is actually elevating all the people who have to respond to his nonsense. I normally wouldn’t give two cents about what some of them have to say. It’s good for people to stand up and be counted.

Once again, there appeared to be more in this thread that there was, with all the one line comments from people who have nothing to say for themselves.

Posted by: ohrealy at September 24, 2017 10:21 AM
Comment #420046

It only appears that way, Warren Porter, to people who only choose to listen to and hear what they want to listen to and hear. He condemned the left’s fascists and the right’s supremacists many times. The left’s problem is they need talking points and it wouldn’t look bad for Trump if the left said he condemned racists and fascists.

Why is it the left hasn’t got a problem with sports figures expressing themselves, but phx8 can’t bring himself to “respect” Trump’s right to call the selfish grand stander a SOB?

I’ll just chalk it up to the Democratic’s hypocrisy and double standards.

Posted by: Weary Willie at September 24, 2017 11:16 AM
Comment #420050

WW,
Entire teams are taking the knee today during the anthem. The Pittsburgh team refused to even come out of the locker room.

Trump is the president. He chose to use the power of his office to call a young black man exercising a constitutional right to protest racial injustice a son-of-a-b*tch. It is a vulgarity Trump has not applied to others who are far worse, but feels free to hurl and this young black man. To make it worse, Trump said the protestor should be fired.

Today we see the results. It is not just Steph Curry or LeBron James. It is entire NFL football teams protesting, INCLUDING the owners.

Like I said before, Trump would bring us to this point, and now we are seeing what Americans are made of.

Posted by: phx8 at September 24, 2017 1:59 PM
Comment #420051

That was at Soldier Field, pdx8, the Steelers stayed in the locker room until the National Anthem was over. The Bears locked arms on their side:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Hj7gaIyfgI

Posted by: ohrealy at September 24, 2017 2:22 PM
Comment #420052

I believe everyone has the right to protest but NOT at your workplace and the football, baseball, and basketball arenas and stadiums are workplaces. I am not saying that what they are protesting is not a noble cause but a different venue would serve them better. As far as Trump, his remarks were uncalled for but also were LeBron’s and Curry’s. If you want to protest racial injustice, take it to the halls of congress where it will serve a better purpose then a sports facility where people could care less seeing a black person who is paid millions protesting inequality and injustice.

Posted by: Rich KAPitan at September 24, 2017 2:25 PM
Comment #420053

Another impeachment charge for the POS:

18 U.S. Code § 227 - Wrongfully influencing a private entity’s employment decisions by a Member of Congress or an officer or employee of the legislative or executive branch

(a) Whoever, being a covered government person, with the intent to influence, solely on the basis of partisan political affiliation, an employment decision or employment practice of any private entity—
(1) takes or withholds, or offers or threatens to take or withhold, an official act, or
(2) influences, or offers or threatens to influence, the official act of another,
shall be fined under this title or imprisoned for not more than 15 years, or both, and may be disqualified from holding any office of honor, trust, or profit under the United States.
(b) In this section, the term “covered government person” means—
(1) a Senator or Representative in, or a Delegate or Resident Commissioner to, the Congress;
(2) an employee of either House of Congress; or
(3) the President, Vice President, an employee of the United States Postal Service or the Postal Regulatory Commission, or any other executive branch employee (as such term is defined under section 2105 of title 5, United States Code).


from https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/227

15 years sounds about right on this one charge. Death penalty for his treason to follow

Posted by: ohrealy at September 24, 2017 2:33 PM
Comment #420054

Updated list of impeachment charges:

18 uscode 227 - Wrongfully influencing a private entity’s employment decisions
15 uscode 78dd-1, foreign corrupt practices act
52 uscode 30121 and 36 usc 510 foreign contributions
18 uscode 371 conspiracy to commit offense or defraud
18 uscode 1030 fraud and related activity with computers
18 uscode 1343 fraud by wire, radio, or television
18 uscode 2 aiding and abetting, in connection to other offenses
18 uscode 2031 Treason, aid and comfort to enemies
18 uscode 1512 Obstruction of Justice, multiple instances,
18 uscode 1956 Money laundering
18 uscode 953 Logan act, unauthorized persons negotiating with foreign governments.
18 uscode 793 Espionage, recommending russians to attack US citizens
18 uscode 201 Bribery, via court settlements and elsewhere
18 uscode 1621 and 1746 Perjury and false statements in writing

There are probably more that haven’t been thought about recently.

Posted by: ohrealy at September 24, 2017 2:51 PM
Comment #420055

ohrealy, Wishful thinking!!! NEVER GOING TO HASPPEN.

Posted by: Rich KAPitan at September 24, 2017 2:54 PM
Comment #420057

“…Republicans will lose terribly in November 2018.”

Posted by: Warren Porter at September 23, 2017 9:08 PM

I believe Warren should change his major to professional prognostication. OH, WAIT…he got it wrong on MMGW so his resume is very thin.

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 24, 2017 3:52 PM
Comment #420058

“Entire teams are taking the knee today during the anthem. The Pittsburgh team refused to even come out of the locker room.”

OH, BOY phx8…that will show those contemptible patriots who love our country and honor our flag.

phx8 and his Liberal Globalists are high-fiving in delirious pandemonium their flag-hating. What’s next? Burn the flag on fifty yard line?

What a grand hate America fest.

I posted President Trumps words and he did not single out any person despite phx8’s desperate attempts to write that he did.

Inappropriate language and actions by employees at the work place is not a protected right.

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 24, 2017 4:03 PM
Comment #420059

KAP,
Professional athletes are using the venue available to them. They are publicly protesting racial injustice.

RF,
Trump said:
“Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that son of a b*tch off the field right now. Out! He’s fired. He’s fired!’”

“But do you know what’s hurting the game more than that?” When people like yourselves turn on television and you see those people taking the knee when they’re playing our great national anthem. The only thing you could do better is if you see it, even if it’s one player, leave the stadium.”

Steph Curry said he voted against going to the White House because of things Trump has said in the past. Trump disinvited the team. LeBron James called Trump a bum, and pointed out no invitation had been extended in the first place.

This is not just one person. It is not just NFL players. NFL owners stood with the players, and against Trump, including some owners who were Trump donors. They are protesting racial injustice.

And the more that rally crowd in Alabama, and those football fans in TX who booed stand by Trump and the white supremacists and other racists, the more the rest of us will fight back.

It will keep happening until get it. Americans will not stand for racial injustice. They will not stand for policemen shooting unarmed black men and receiving no punishment. They will not stand for racial profiling, including the kind done by Sheriff Arpaio.

You are seeing Americans take a stand, including football players and owners and basketball players and more. America really is great. But it is not the same Americans you imagine.

Posted by: phx8 at September 24, 2017 4:50 PM
Comment #420060

The crowd soundly booed the Pittsburgh team. The ratings are tanking for the NFL. They’re making their bed. They can sleep in it.

When it starts to hurt the bottom line they will suddenly become patriots again.

Posted by: Weary Willie at September 24, 2017 5:24 PM
Comment #420061

This fiasco only demonstrates what thin skin these liberals have. When I’m at work I hear mothers and fathers repeatedly say fuck and damn and swear in general in front of their kids. I hear the kids use the same language. Why is it such a tumultuous episode for liberals to hear a grown man swear?

http://variety.com/2017/tv/news/real-time-bill-maher-n-word-1202453099/

Where’s your outrage now, phx8? ohrealy? Why does Bill Maher get a pass from you guys? Hypocrisy much?

Posted by: Weary Willie at September 24, 2017 5:31 PM
Comment #420062

phx8 It would better serve those overpayed athletes if they protested where they weren’t Pi**ing people off. All they are doing is hurting their cause. As I said it is a noble cause they are protesting about but they need to be in a different venue. I’m all for their 1st amendment rights but not in the sports facilities when they are supposed to be playing a game.

Posted by: Rich KAPitan at September 24, 2017 5:50 PM
Comment #420064

WW,
Maher is a late night cable host who does a show called “Politically Incorrect.” He tries to be rude and outrageous. Trump is president of the US. He represents all of us. He should set an example and model the best in us.

KAP,
Pi**ing people off is the whole point of these protests. They are not doing this to put on a show for people who already agree with them. They are letting that Trump rally crowd in Alabama, and those booing fans at a football game in TX, and Trump most of all, that what he did was completely unacceptable.

Trump tried to divide the owners from the players by encouraging the owners to fire protestors. That failed. The owners stood by the players. Then Trump tried to divide the fans from the owners/players. That will fail too.

And hopefully a lot of people- especially those Alabama Trump supporters, and booing fans in TX, and Trump- will realize that racial injustice is unacceptable. Good Americans will not stand for racism and bigotry and divisiveness.

Posted by: phx8 at September 24, 2017 7:24 PM
Comment #420065

Phx8 they are pi××ing the wrong people off. The NFL’s rating are going down because of their behavior. Like I said protest in a different venue or take their concerns to congress. I am all for 1st amendment rights but in the right place and time. Keep politics out of sports.

Posted by: Richard Kapitan at September 24, 2017 7:54 PM
Comment #420066
Maher is a late night cable host who does a show called “Politically Incorrect.” He tries to be rude and outrageous. Posted by: phx8 at September 24, 2017 7:24 PM

It’s Real Time With Bill Maher now on HBO, and YT:

https://www.youtube.com/user/RealTime

It’s sometimes well worth watching and other times not at all. His online audience seems to be an odd mix of people who can’t get along with each other. He’s a little silly even for a comedian. He thought dotard was a combination of dolt and retard.

Much Ado about Nothing [V, 1]
Leonato
2131
Tush, tush, man; never fleer and jest at me:
I speak not like a dotard nor a fool,
As under privilege of age to brag
What I have done being young, or what would do
Were I not old.

Taming of the Shrew
[V, 1]
Baptista Minola
2440
Away with the dotard; to the gaol with him!

I’m proud of the football players having solidarity with each other. I don’t care about the owners at all, but they know which side their bread is buttered.

Posted by: ohrealy at September 24, 2017 8:08 PM
Comment #420067

This thread drifted off on the tangent of NFL. I will post something specific on that.

Posted by: Christine & John at September 24, 2017 9:03 PM
Comment #420069

I think the tangent was the injection of racism into the discussion to create a distraction.

phx8 can’t help himself. He has to direct everything toward Trump and he couldn’t wait to use a hypothetical uttered by Trump to inject racism into the discussion.

Posted by: Weary Willie at September 24, 2017 10:57 PM
Comment #420087
he got it wrong on MMGW

When was that? When was the last time global annual temperature anomaly were negative? Not in my lifetime. I predict the future as a matter of my career, what do you do? Sit on your butt and smoke cigarettes all day?

I maintain what I said befire. Republicans are going down in a big defeat next year. It’s pretty much settled that Americans are sick and tired of what’s happening in their government. Trump might get a round of applause in Alabama, but Alabama values aren’t American values. Real Americans care about things like individual rights and liberty rather than the cultural homegineity you advocate. Republicans are on track to become a rump party influencia in only a handful of rural states in the southeast and west.

He condemned the left’s fascists and the right’s supremacists many times
Did he call the supremacists SOBs?
Posted by: Warren Porter at September 25, 2017 12:15 PM
Comment #420089

I can think of three times in history the annual temperature went negative. That also means it went positive just as many times.

You say you predict the future? With data only 150 years old its not much of a reliable data set you’re working with. You should stop concentrating on the future and start studying the past.

Posted by: Weary Willie at September 25, 2017 2:26 PM
Comment #420092

I don’t want this to thread to be derailed with a discussion about climate.

My particular work has to do with forecasting in the near term. It is there where I rest my prognostication laurels. Weather forecasts are incredibly accurate these days given the sophistication with which we build our computer models. Sure, they are far from perfect, but these predictions are much better than any other industry concerned with the future.

Republicans will lose big time in the House of Representatives in November 2018. Mark my words.

Posted by: Warren Porter at September 25, 2017 3:06 PM
Comment #420098

Republicans will lose big time in the House of Representatives in November 2018. Mark my words.
Posted by: Warren Porter at September 25, 2017 3:06 PM

Hmmm….is this the same Lefty Elite who was slam-dunk certain that Hillary would be president?

Warren’s voting predictions should be taken as seriously as my predictions each week about which football team will win. His long-term climate predictions should not even be considered except as comedic farce.

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 25, 2017 3:53 PM
Comment #420108

This post was about political identity. Even climate scientists are a group now. They are supported by people who think people who deny global warming should be in jail.

http://scienceblogs.com/gregladen/2015/09/19/letter-to-president-obama-investigate-deniers-under-rico/

Trying to prove in a court of law that fossil fuels cause global warming is a heavy burden to carry. The jury would have to base their entire verdict on faith.

It’s too bad you feel I’m dissing your occupation, but as I said before, even if I did agree with you you have no solution.

What would happen if the NFL decided the recitation of the Lord’s prayer should begin every NFL game?

Posted by: Weary Willie at September 25, 2017 6:05 PM
Comment #420109

Would the left fight nearly as hard for the NFL’s right to start their games with a prayer as they do for employee’s right to start the game with a protest?

Posted by: Weary Willie at September 25, 2017 6:10 PM
Comment #420111

Good points Weary. I will vote for a chaplain for the NFL. It’s OK for congress and it’s OK for football.

Rather than being pressured into embarrassing themselves by disrespecting our national anthem and flag, I would prefer all the players and staff stay off the field until the game begins. The fans who pay the bill do not attend football games for political or social engineering reasons.

Posted by: Royal Flush at September 25, 2017 6:19 PM
Comment #420133

phx8, does the NFL have the right to start their games with a prayer?

Posted by: Weary Willie at September 26, 2017 9:28 AM
Comment #420214

Simple question, phx8.

Posted by: Weary Willie at September 28, 2017 10:07 AM
Comment #420224

Irrelevant question, WW.

Posted by: Warren Porter at September 28, 2017 6:07 PM
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