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Gender: Male
Current location: Cleveland Ohio
Member since: 2003 before July 6th
Number of posts: 45,558

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These people who call themselves Christians are conflating the easy to understand

vengeance of the Old Testament God with and therefor changing the Christ into an Old Testament Deity.

I understand completely the ideas of the Old Testament. Life was harsh, brutal even and that was how they viewed their god.

Think about it. To get away from the Egyptians, the Hebrew slaves had to do all these things to prove their loyalty to the God. And since human people who took leadership it was through brutality and punishment. It's no wonder the god they worshiped would be the same.

Jesus came along with a new convent that called for sacrifice through the symbolic ingesting of god through communion which really means god's spirit is within you and not in the world about you.

So now, 2000 plus years later, men like Huckabee don't trust the Jesus of the New Testament and believe in the vengeful god of the Old Testament.

It's hard to be a true Christian because you have to surrender the old way of thinking and strike out to live your life in the service of the good.

For the fire and brimstone crowd, it is so hard to grasp the concept that it is up to you as an individual to be the keeper of your own salvation.

At least that is what I take from it.

The worst part of being sick all the time is the stuff you miss....

I missed the last Leonard Cohen performance as well as the last Dave Brubeck concert. I had tickets to both but when the time came for the concert I was sitting in a hospital bed, watching clips on my laptop...

I have missed so much over the years that a lot of times it seems like I am in jail or somehow separated from the rest of society.

But I have to say this; I don't know what I would do without DU and the community we have all built by caring and showing compassion to so many people in need.

Sometimes I feel more attached to the people here than I do to my reality friends.

Just wanted to mention how important this place can be to those of us who can't always get out of the house.

It's not the Tax Rates that are killing the budget....

It's the make-up of how we tax money.

It is the preferential tax treatment of Capital Gains that is blowing holes in the amount of taxes collected.

Most of the revenue earned by those at the top of the Income Tax Rate have neatly and quietly changed their income from salary to capital gains.

Over the decades, I have had the pleasure to have met so many people from so many religions...

many ethnicities, people from bikers to bankers,exotic dancers to environmentalist, very wealthy and dirt poor. It's my joy, most of the time, to have shared a moment in life with so much different people.

I bring this up now because this is the time of year when most of us start to think about family and friends we have lost through death and those we have lost because that moment we had filled with that person was over when you parted.

I had a lot of discussions about religion over that time and I have to say that after a while when people tried to convert me or persuade me this is what I returned.

I live my life the way all modern takes on religion, at their core, practice. I say that I always treat people the way I would want to be treated. I lend a hand when I can and offer the shoulder to cry on when someone is in need.

I then explain I do not need to fear the wrath of god in order to practice what I profess. If there is a heaven, I ask them, why would a loving god deny me entrance because I did not follow your religious practice but practice what is most religions say would be a good and moral life.

Too many people think about Jesus or god or Krishna or Mohamed as a real prick to nit pick about how he/they are celebrated.

From what I understand, the best way to achieve Nirvana is to do your best as a person while living on earth.

I have to confess I was quick to retort about all that is bad about religion but now that is all I say.

I usually get a few nods as I, more often than not, kill that part of the evenings entertainment and we can all get back to backslapping, remembering what crazy things we did when young and, the ultimate conversation, politics.

The shameful vote on ratifying the UN Treaty on the rights of the disabled...

My message to my repulican senator...

Sen. Portman,

As a lifelong democrat, I just wanted to make that clear from the start, I never once wrote to the many Ohio GOP senators over the years because frankly, I do not believe I can realistically have an influence on Republicans who vote in DC.

But in this case, I feel I have to make an exception. But first, I want to tell you I was not all that concerned when you trounced Lee Fisher back in 2010 because I remembered how you had voted as a Congressperson and how well you served the country as the director of the OMB. I came to believe that you were a reasonable man. I even went so far to defend you on democratic websites more than a few times over the years.

But, for the life of me, I cannot see how you would buy in to all the crap that was flung around about today’s vote to ratify the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

Seriously. Was it the fear of black helicopter brigades that made you vote no? Were you listening to the paranoid imaginations of far right citizens who believe that we are stepping closer to World Government with Secretary-General of the United Nations Ban Ki-Moon at the helm and secret internment camps set up all over the western part of the US? Or was it because of histrionics of Right Wing Catholic who see every vote in Washington DC as one-step closer to Abortion Mills on every corner.

As a person with a disability, I see this vote as a positive way to bring the world together on a benign matter that should have been a no brainer. Who could possibly be against extending the example we, as a country set by making it easier for those of us who are disabled travel around the world?

And what about all the disabled veterans who wish to travel overseas? Does your concern for the rights of our heroes stop at the Ocean or Borders end?

Even though I know that a lot of your more right leaning constituents would never think of traveling to such a place like France or anywhere else beside England, which I understand, has yet to be condemned by the far right wing.

The point is, I thought that you were a reasonable man. But this vote shows me that you are nothing more than a craven politician who is concerned more about placating the right wing of your party than the rest of the country.

How dare you sir. Have you no shame?

What song(s) that you hear and immediately are flooded with memories or feelings…

Some special song that takes you back to an important part of your life.

Pat Methane’s Last Train Home is mine.

Now I have been listening and playing music since I turned on my tiny sounding, static full little AM radio and heard The Beatles singing I Want to Hold Your Hand. I was around 5 years old and nothing ever reached out and grabbed me like that.

Until I first heard this song.

Laurie and I had just come home from seeing my mother in FLA. She was dying of cancer. I left to come back to Cleveland and I knew in my heart that I would not be seeing her again. But my brain said otherwise.

About two weeks after we landed in Cleveland, my stepfather called my sister to say that mom had taken a turn for the worst and she had been transferred out of the cancer ward and into the area where Terminal patients live out their last few days. This was back in 1990 and the word Hospice was really used.

My step father asked if I wanted to talk to my mother and I said no, I will speak with her when I get there, trying hard to wish my mother alive.

Laurie and I drove down from Cleveland to Ft Myers and made in 23 hours. The eight ball I bought along helped a lot, a slip and the last time I tangoed with the coke.

As we pulled into Punta Gorda that night, this song came on the radio, first time I heard it. I had to pull over. I was sobbing so hard and long that Laurie was really worried about me.

I knew I had given up the last chance to tell my mother I loved her because of some macho bullshit that I was still carrying around with me and I was full of regret..

The song touched something primal in me, setting off a whole bunch of emotions that I had suppressed for the last ten years or so. I had thrown off all my addictions and bad crap and was, in that moment, at the best place in my life up until then. I was strong, sure of myself and confident about our future.

Thinking back, the last time I saw my Mom she must have seen how life had fallen together for me. Out of the three of us, I was the one who was on shaky ground due to my troubles with booze, drugs and stuffing myself with unhealthy food.

When she drove with us to the airport just two weeks before I got that call, she just smiled and waved at me, all bundled up because the drugs she was taking made her cold even in the Florida summer.

Sorry I am going on about this but that thread about guitar solos brought back just how powerful a song can be...

BTW, Don't Stop Thinking About Tomorrow reminds me of the feelings I had when Bill Clinton was elected. That was their theme song.
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