A Renaissance is coming – David Wayne Fitzsimmons

We the People have voted, we have made our choices clear, and the path forward is constrained by all the built in checks and balances, and what appears to be a foot dragging fetish. The following is a piece from David Wayne Fitzsimmons, normally a political cartoonist published regularly in the Arizona Daily Star. It was forwarded to me from FB.

While this piece was published before Election Day a new administration will not be inaugurated for another two months so none of the concepts presented have been acted upon. However this exhortation offers food for thought, most especially the idea that democracy is not something that we have or can be given but is something that we do, with voting a small part of it. That said I cannot agree with all the language herein, in particular the parts implying American exceptionalism. Much damage has been done, both by a malignant demagogue and an apparently apathetic public. As well the wildfire virus is currently out of control. We have a long road ahead to regain our place as a partner among equals, much less to regain leadership. This essay asks some necessary though painful questions.

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“Will a virus kill our economy? Will our dollar lose its value? Will a civil war follow Tuesday? Will we tear each other apart? Or will we pull together, as we always have, to collectively rebuild our nation?

It is up to you, dear citizen.

I believe an American Renaissance is coming.

After the Black Death the survivors looked to the past for inspiration, beyond the recent Dark Ages, to classical Greece and Rome, which led to a flowering of enlightenment, the arts and sciences.

Out of the rubble an American Renaissance will emerge. And there will be a rubble of historic scale.

What is the future you want, citizen? A continuation of the Dark Ages or Renaissance?

A new President will have no choice but to call for the most radical sweeping legislation in the history of our Republic, a vast Marshall Plan for the rebuilding of our nation.

Are you in, dear citizen?

Will we cobble together a European-style blend of socialism and capitalism with healthcare a right, public service honorable, and sacrifice understood?

Will we reform our politics, creating a responsive accountable high tech transparent political system?

Will we have the will to strip money from our corrupt political system?

Your call, citizen.

Will we put country first and embrace the collective action our enormous challenges call for?

What say you, citizen?

Will we reward evidence-based policy makers and shun the donor-based policy makers that serve the narrow and forsake the Common Good?

Will rule by the obscenely rich end? Will you ask them to nourish the profoundly wounded Republic in which they flourished? Will Americans, in a protracted Depression, drive a tax collector’s spigot into the neck of every freeloading million, billion and zillionaire to lift up our nation, as all of us are asked to do?

Tell us what you think on Tuesday, citizen.

Will our nation put the vast jobless multitudes to work, leaning into restoring and building the next America, while an army of Americans will test and track this pandemic into containment?

It is up to you, dear exhausted citizen.

This can be the American Century, if you wish it so, citizen.

With innovation, science and tech know-how the United States of America will lead the way in combating climate change, bringing our people unparalleled prosperity.

Only if you wish it so.

Will we rebuild our nation’s bridges, roads, universities, and ports?

Will we upgrade public education and our entire digital infrastructure with the newest and best state of the art know-how that made us the envied and admired standard for the globe?

It is up to you, citizen.

From sea to rising sea we must combat climate change with the zeal and commitment of the America that liberated the world from Fascism in the second World War. We must build wind farms, solar farms, electric charging stationswith the patriotic zealwith which the Greatest Generation churned out the men, arms, bombers, and tanks that conquered an existential threat to our lives.

Our youth that vote on Tuesday will inherit this fight. They have no choice. They will be our next Greatest Generation.

Do you stand with them, citizen?

America surrendered to the threat of an invading virus because we chose to be led by a cabal of ignominious know-nothings who have poisoned truth with their malignant anti-science, anti-reason, and anti-education ethos.

Is that your America, citizen?

On Tuesday, it is up to you to deliver reactionary politics to history’s freezer.

Will America, reborn, seek truth, justice, and reconciliation?

Entirely up to you this Tuesday.

Will America, reborn, tear the cancer of racism from our hearts and finally embrace our diversity, and lift up our brothers and sisters?

Ball’s in your court.

Will America, reborn, fund public education at levels appropriate for a People willing to pay the price to make America a first rate world power, a light for the World? Will we reignite Liberty’s torch on election day? Will we choose the American Renaissance?

It is up to you, citizen.

A Letter to Mother

“Dear Mother,

It began with the article about the birds, the 2.9 billion missing North America birds, the 2.9 billion birds that disappeared and no one noticed. The sparrows, black birds, and swallows who didn’t make it, who weren’t ever born, who stopped flying or singing or making their most ingenious nests, who didn’t perch or peck their gentle beaks into moist black earth. It began with the birds. Hadn’t we even commented in June, James and I that they were hardly here? A kind of eerie quiet had descended. But later they came back. The swarms of barn swallows and the huge ravens landing on the gravel one by one. I know it was after hearing about the birds, that afternoon I crashed my bike. Suddenly falling, falling, unable to prevent the catastrophe ahead, unable to find the brakes or make them work, unable to stop the falling. I fell and spun and realized I had already been falling, that we have been falling, all of us, and crows and conifers and ice caps and expectations — falling and falling and I wanted to keep falling. I didn’t want to be here to witness everything falling, missing, bleaching, burning, drying, disappearing, choking, never blooming. I didn’t want to live without the birds or bees and sparkling flies that light the summer nights. I didn’t want to live with hunger that turned us feral or desperation that gave us claws. I wanted to fall and fall into the deepest, darkest ground and be finally still and buried there. Continue reading “A Letter to Mother”

One way or another most of us are prisoners

It’s a struggle for the new chick to peck its way out of the egg. We postmoderns still seeking truth have the same basic problem to solve, but the eggshell is less visible. Make no mistake though we are each inside the thing, struggling to get out, and find out what is on the other side. And then of course we each have to figure out what do next. The good news is that there are a lot of us.

image: Kornerstone Farms

Full Cold Moon Solstice

the pendulum swings to the end of its travel

the shortening of days slows and stops

the full cold moon lights the world

the wind briefly holds its breath

the tides come full and stop

a moment of absolute calm

to breathe, to be present

before beginning again

the high holy night

Another found along the way

Found this treatise nailed to the door yesterday without an identified author or return address. Someone has been thinking hard and working hard on where to go from here. I leave it without comment.

Towards A Positive Democratic Platform
Democrats need to present a positive program and to explain why it is better than the Rightwing agenda. We have to move from the reactive to the creative. Continue reading “Another found along the way”

Let’s put this in perspective

Despite our traits of pride and often enormous hubris sometimes the creator let’s the humans get away with most of our foolishness intact. This last hurricane – LANE – is a case in point. With all of our modern tools we tracked it all the way from the Baja, night and day with the infrared channels of the latest satellite technologies, with photographs from the International Space Station showing the giant 500 mile span of the storm, with brave men flying into the eye to measure the windspeed, and with the ominous hour by hour progress reports on all of the emergency channels, the TV, radio, and celphone alerts. It was the equivalent of a Central Pacific Region wide All Points Bulletin. Continue reading “Let’s put this in perspective”

Deliverance and hope

It rained for the first time in three months the other day, a deliverance of a sort. The hurricane Hector had come farther and farther north, closer and closer the whole week as it made its way west from the Baja, then skirted the south part of the island as it roared by, dragging a little rain in its wake. A near miss. No real wind and a little rain. A godsend. The fires had been loose around the island for some time so the crews finally had some needed help. The pastures have begun to green again in quick response.

Deliverance and hope.

But then the news that my brother Bryan had worsened. He had been undergoing treatment for a blood cancer, had endured the lengthy ups and downs of chemo and isolation, a second bone marrow transplant, and surgeries, until the doctors said at this point he was not coming back. His wife and daughter were beyond exhaustion. Bryan awoke long enough to say the sun is good, and he wanted to go to the sun.

There are no coincidences, and today NASA launched the first ever spacecraft toward the sun, designed to spiral in ever closer over many years…

The owl came at dusk and circled once to tell us it was time.


Tonight the Perseids meteor showers blossomed, glowing tears across the sky, sorrow and celebration all at once…

Safe passage Bryan on your journey to the sun… Sail on

Farewell the tidepools of Kapoho

a heavy heart as the lava flows toward Kapoho,
of all the special places on Hawai’i a jewel.
the tidepools, shallow ponds separated by
a lacy network of low coral and lava walkways,
where the people can go out a half mile into the ocean
and see the little fishes, a calm protected reef,
the seas held just outside, a place where the little
ones come right up and nibble on your fingers

while the lava flow is not quite there yet
it continues on its course