Saturday, November 12, 2016

Needed: An Administration of National Unity

Given the close results of the 2016 presidential election, in which the president-elect won the electoral college but lost the popular vote, We the People desperately need an “Administration of National Unity.”

President-elect Trump should appoint an administration that reflects a range of views and is dedicated to finding common ground and unifying the country.

The administration should coalesce around the reasons people voted for the president-elect. It should also address the reasons the popular majority voted against him.

Those who voted against him did so primarily because of his public personality, statements and behavior and because of his unpredictability, seeming instability and blatant disregard for the truth.

Others ignored the president-elect's personal weaknesses and voted FOR him primarily because of his pledge to strengthen the economy — an economy that has left them desperate for change.

It should be noted that the Democratic Party’s candidates throughout the primaries all sought the same goal of economic growth and job creation. Rebuilding the nation’s infrastructure was one of the few areas of agreement between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.

Trump and both parties also agree on the urgent need for unity and tranquility following this bitter election.

Trump himself is already backing away from several of his divisive, broad-brush positions. (It is amazing what Trump's 90-minute, "reality check" with President Obama did!)

Now Trump should appoint (and even pair off) leaders from both parties and elsewhere. He should demand consensus from them all.

He should give the entire nation reason for hope.

The president-elect should demonstrate not just bi-partisanship but non-partisanship. That is evidenced in his own political history. He should demonstrate magnanimity and inclusion.

We know Donald Trump is a striver who yearns to succeed. He should be fully aware that the failure to unite this country will doom the Trump presidency and result in personal failure for one Donald Trump.

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Sunday, November 06, 2016

The Election and Fox's 'Ocean of Light and Love'

On the eve of this frightening election, words spoken more than 350 years ago have helped me.

They come from George Fox, who founded the Quakers.

England was in the throes of a tumultuous, bloody civil war at the time. Fox was a young, uneducated, deeply troubled man. He was literally adrift in the war-torn country, and searching for “Truth.” He could not find it anywhere. Not among the “professors” (read “pastors”) nor in the Bible.

Nonetheless, in this time of peril, he had a vision (one among many) of an “Ocean of Darkness and Death” being covered by an “infinite Ocean of Light and Love.”

He continues in his journal that the “darkness" compelled him to learn the “conditions" of all so that he could speak to them. From this darkness, the Light leads him, and us, to “openings”  — leads us to love.

This 2016 political campaign, terrible as it has been, terrible as its outcome could be regardless as who wins, may be the “opening” we all need.

Strangely, many, perhaps a majority, of us are united in voting not for one candidate but against the other — the lesser of two “evils” as we see it.

For there to be reconciliation, it’s not helpful to argue over which candidate is which. Our pain in the darkness of negativity is shared regardless of how we voted.

If we can move beyond finger-pointing and blame, yes beyond hate, we have the opportunity to draw closer together, to find unity and even agreement on the nation’s needed course.

Clearly we all suffer from our “bubble” lives….from our isolating “conditions” as Fox described them. His vision tells us that Light will lead us to explore our differing “conditions” and find healing in understanding and love.

It’s worth reading the “Ocean of Light” passage in his journal: If it helps, you can embrace, or merely accept or read past Fox’s religiosity.

Here is the passage:

"I cried unto the Lord, saying, “Why should I be thus, seeing I was never addicted to commit these evils?” and the Lord answered that it was needful I should have a sense of all conditions, how else should I speak to all conditions? and in this I saw the infinite love of God. I saw also that there was an ocean of darkness and death; but an infinite ocean of light and love, which flowed over the ocean of darkness. In that also I saw the infinite love of God, and I had great openings….”  1652

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Sunday, October 23, 2016

Sibling vote deal amended! Hillary gets my vote

This just in!

My previous post was about how my sister, a North Carolina resident and avid Bernie Sander’s backer, was strongly considering writing in Bernie’s name on her North Carolina ballot.

I offered a swap. The deal was that she’d vote in the Tar Heel State, a crucial “swing state,” for Hillary if I would write in Bernie here in Oregon, a solid Blue state, on her behalf. I was previously intending to vote for Hillary here.

But events of the past week, including Trump’s saying he may not accept the results of the November 8 election, have convinced her that the strongest anti-Trump message needs to be sent at the polls — everywhere.

My sister and I have agreed that Hillary Clinton, for all her weaknesses, should receive every vote possible, including hers and mine.

In short, I just mailed in my Oregon ballot, casting my vote for Hillary. My sister vows to vote for Hillary too.

Note to Hillary: Never again do I want to find myself voting primarily AGAINST a candidate, rather than FOR one. Four years hence, Hillary, give us more — many more — reasons to vote for you than the fact that your opponent is deranged, dangerous demagogue.

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Sunday, October 16, 2016

This Oregonian is voting for Hillary in North Carolina

Want to defeat Trump but not vote for Clinton?

Consider the deal I struck up with my sister Kate.

I’m a resident of Oregon; she lives and votes in North Carolina.

We were both avid Bernie Sander’s supporters during the primaries, but after Hillary Clinton won the Democratic nomination, I decided to swallow hard and back Clinton.

(I’m the little-known founder of “Nose-holders for Hillary.”

My sister is a die-hard Sanders backer. The other day she told me she was writing in Bernie’s name on her North Carolina ballot. (I have a cousin in Washington state who has taken the same vow.)

Add to this electoral equation my sister’s learning recently that her step-son, who also lives in North Carolina, is voting for Trump.

She and I had a little back and forth on the phone recently exploring the political landscape and our “consciences.”

She asserted that in all “good conscience” she can’t vote for Hillary. I asserted that in all “good conscience” I couldn’t see how she would pass by cancelling out her stepson’s Trump vote.

We agreed that True Blue Oregon is going for Hillary and that North Carolina is still a question mark.

So we struck a deal. She’s voting for Hillary “for me” in North Carolina; I’m writing in Bernie “for her” in Oregon.

Sound interesting? Do you fit into a similar scenario? Are you looking for a vote swapping partner?

There’s an app that can help you find one.

Its web site is

For Republicans who want to block Trump but can’t stomach voting for Clinton, there’s help here:

Both help you vote without violating your conscience.

Yes, you can defeat Trump without voting for Clinton.

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