Legionnaire’s Disease From the Flint River?

In just a brief report on NPR, we heard this morning that the Legionnaire’s disease in Genesee county has come from the Flint River. Legionnaire’s is a mysterious disease, but it has something to do with water that sits in metal condensers, as in the AC units at the legionnaire’s convention where it got its name. Something strange and terrible is going on by Flint. There have been a number of deaths, under ten, and a number of cases, under thirty, reported.

Tonight, NPR is playing stories about how public officials intentionally understated numbers and generally ignored the complaints of the people. The same is occurring now, under our noses, especially if road salt in wells and rivers is a danger with metal pipes.

Last winter, when blogging about snow water, we also blogged about the unusually low temperatures- 28.5 below zero was officially recorded one night. WWJ and every radio would say things like 8 or 12 below was the low temperature in the outlying areas. The difference between the two is the difference between life and death for animals and homeless humans, though everyone should have known the circumstance was extreme. People could have died because the news was ignoring people who were calling in in amazement (maybe I was the only one). We figured there was some security reason for the obstruction and the lies.

Today we heard about collecting snow water on NPR for the first time. The people in Flint, if they do not evacuate and become refugees, will be drinking rainwater as soon as they think it out. Snow water is a bit more involved, but I’d bathe kids in that sooner than buy bottled water. I’d be bathing them in rain barrel water if I lived in Flint.

We want a public discussion about how to safely collect snow and rain water, so that this common sense becomes common knowledge. Of course we want to test the water falling in our area, and find clean food safe ways of collecting. But I have been drinking this beautiful, pristine stuff whenever possible for over a year. We also want industry to manufacture stovetop distillers and home heater distillers. To fix the political problems that resulted in the obscurantism that allowed for this disaster may be a bit more involved.

Sometimes small things matter a great deal. We have been deliberating on whether the Academy awards is a big enough issue for a boycott. Is it like Jackie Robinson being kept out of the Majors, very obvious? On the other hand, are we calling for affirmative action in Hollywood? There are no Asian women in the NBA, but we suspect that this is more like Jackie Robinson, and that it makes it more like the Montgomery bus boycott. But affirmative action and segregation violate the Fourteenth Amendment, which prohibit discrimination according to race. In Plessy v. Fergusson, Justice Harlan dissented: “Our Constitution is colorblind. It neither knows nor tolerates distinctions according to race.” To pretend that distinctions of natural merit are caused by racism, as our affirmative action does, is also unconstitutional. It obscures the political issue of segregation, presenting a solution that is limited to the crudest outward appearances, wrapped up for the consumption of the demos. But at least something is done! Then when we need the discrimination of reason, we find we have not cultivated this, and only learn why this matters when there is a disaster and there are deaths.

In Ben Carson’s book One nation, he tells a great joke about a woman who accidentally ate talking parrots given to her by her son. She told him she didn’t know they could talk, “They should have said something!”

NPR Radiolab Presents the Alternative Hypothesis

On Radiolab, the host explained that the internet works by links and clicks, so that a democracy is deciding what comes up in a search. My hundreds of pages simply never come up because they have not become popular yet. My sister, too explains that one is supposed to tailor titles to search terms that are more specific in just the right way. In titling books, we do this, so that the first word brings one to the right list. Rather than “On,” Toward or Notes, the first word of my title might be Philosophic psychology. Since most people are interested in neither, one can expect these to get buried on the web. A third view is that of my aunt, who paid fifteen hundred dollars to a specialist to get their business website to people who might look for it.

Rather, we maintain a fourth, perhaps more conspiratorial theory. We hold that this is mathematically demonstrable. When one searches on the web in quotations, it is supposed to be finding those precise words. “Ben Carson for President” yields a website titled that, and then finds that exact phrase in a couple articles, then finds articles where just some of the words are present. We have these exact words in our title, and it does not come up. I have heard that a search only covers a small percentage of the actual web. Ten searches then out hit the Blog of that title at least once. Now I may have angered Google by calling them out when I tried to download Duck Duck Go, a search engine with some integrity, but there is also supposed to be Yahoo and Microsoft. The latter recently bumped Google off our computer as the default search engine, automatically, for our convenience, when we finally gave in to annoying prompting to upgrade to windows ten. The whole system was down for a month until an independent expert determined that we needed now a different cable to have internet access at all. Hope Microsoft made money last month!

As an adjunct professor, we used to bust forged papers by finding an anomaly, say, a misspelled word or unusual grammatical error. We claim that it is mathematically impossible for that many word to come up so rarely, and also mathematically impossible that no one would ever be searching for any of those words. My computer lists as a goggle search when by word of mouth someone visits, but these say “no search terms” I occasionally get visitors like the one who searched for “Eric Salem Plato Allegory of the Cave” but very rarely. “Plymouth Michigan,” in the title of one page, also has come up on a rare occasion. But I believe it mathematically impossible that no one has been searching for information about the Flint River or the current water crisis deeply enough that a blog with those things in the title, and unique, useful information that could have kept some lead out of some people, has never come up enough to have a single search engine visitor. I also remember the voice on the phone with the sliding scale.

Given these apparent facts, and understanding that these companies are not regulated and so will/can/must do anything to make money, and the little problem here in the States with campaign finance, and seeing too how hard it is to get this course, materialistic people to look up, we still think we are right about WordPress. Their volunteer denied that likes were inhibited, until we pointed out down the page that Liz the Fair had just explained their little policy on likes to a more polite inquirer: Indeed, visitors who are not on WordPress must sign up, giving information in order to like anything. It took me a couple months of suspicion, and a bit of frustration to figure this out. We will not be compensated for any of this. On the whole Internet, none of these companies will compensate anyone for the drag on the GNP. The common good is sold because of an erroneous or limited understanding of the free market. Next time we may blog on Centrist economics. Our liberties are not commodities.

WordPress is welcome to come on and say they think I’m wrong, but they will not, because they know it is not wrong, and there is much more we have not thought of yet. If we do not secure liberty on the internet, the alternative is tyranny. And we are not doing it.

Does WordPress Block Internet Access?

Comments, followers  and “likes” are being inhibited on my webpage. This may be especially evident from here because we do not have any money for extortion fees and do not do Facebook or give our information to Google. These do not pick up our material in basic searches. Try Flint River and road salt, or “Ben Carson for President,” in quotations, for example. In order to “like” anything, one must sign up for WordPress. I cannot yet advise that one do this.  Is information being collected and brokered in order for us to communicate? This is contrary to the First and Fifth Amendments, and the courts will uphold that understanding of the Free Speech and liberty clauses. Does WordPress too inhibit access to the internet, while keeping our writing to circulate only among WordPress accounts, making their own little internet, at the expense of everyone else? Are they not liable, for example, if knowing about rainwater might have kept some lead out of the people in Flint? When we complained about this, we were offered help gaining access to the internet for a sliding scale of up to 1000$, complete with foreign voices and the sounds of a busy office in the background. We pay 60$ per month to Charter for physical access to the internet, which the search engines and website building companies do not own. One might pave driveways for a living and then block access to the road, demanding  payola. Or one hires a driveway paving company, even for a traded favor, and comes home to find a concrete toll booth blocking  access to the street complete with a guard demanding extortion fees. The internet companies, meanwhile, argue that they just cannot make money otherwise, and have paid congress to discover “deregulation.” We say no: the driveway paver gets paid for driveway paving, not for access to the road. We say this is so  even if his position allows him to seize this access, and even if he offered free driveway paving planning to set up a toll booth, and now that the homeowner did not accept his explanation of the hidden contract clause, threw him into the street, he cannot make a profit. Deregulating him to allow him to block access would indeed increase his profits and tax revenue. But the purpose of laws in regulating commerce is to preserve the economy where people are paid not for their power but for the value they add, their true product, as is the paved driveway. Google just cashed a sixty billion dollar check for add revenue in the previous year. We suggest that the true value they created by their labor as a search engine is much less, and that their drag on the GNP exceeds the difference. How much time is spent by workers when using the internet and Microsoft, U-tube, Google et. al. make those involuntary selections, or interfere with their proceedings with pop up advertising? Spying on us for marketing purposes, too, demonstrates the purpose of regulation.  If I pave your driveway but make most of my money spying on you, well, we suggest that is neither safe, legitimate, nor legal. We suggest that their fees for access system is indistinguishable in principle from mob “protection” money, a “tax” paid for keeping order in the neighborhood, you know, because people just up and vandalize or destroy dry cleaning businesses, for example. Just as these do not own the peace, though they can take it, so the company does not own the internet, and a search engine, we say, must be just that, and not a fee for access system. We, the people need to put a stop to this, beginning with a petition to WordPress and to Congress. One can see the conversation we had in their Forum, when I learned that in order to like any content, a visitor must sign up for WordPress. We hold them liable too for the effects of that illusion. When I read their “privacy policy,” I could not even finish. I had to excuse myself, to go toss some cookies, as I had had too many. These people are very nice, but they still cannot set up a toll booth at the end of my driveway.

The fact of their control of internet access can be established by a mathematical comparison of search engine and word of mouth traffic. We get token or zero traffic on some 700 pages. An occasional local search say for Hines drive” will pick up the word on my local history pages. My whole business, and now my living, depended on the assumption that these publications would be on the internet. If WordPress takes confidence in our not being able to sue them because it is a free website, we will remind them that it is illegal to enslave people, even on the internet, even if they have not paid you and you provide them a mutually beneficial service. In exchange for our content, on which they may advertise (But not spy, collect marketing information, or use for their own tactical self promotion)  they have provided a website, and the assumption is that the website is on the internet, rather than in its own little bubble waiting to serve their perception of their own financial interests. Perhaps the driveway paver would shift the opening of ones driveway to go into an underground cave, or a whole different highway system.

Our Replacement for Experimental Psychology

The human things are spread out before us, and our involvement in the world presents us with an encounter with a certain slice, a part of the human things that we know first hand. To understand the soul and the health of the soul, we begin not from the “scientific” understanding of political and psychological things, but “from their ‘natural’ understanding, i.e., from the way in which they present themselves in political life,” and indeed in psychological life (NRH, p. 81).

Previously, we blogged about an experiment cited in the abnormal Psychology text, a study in which a dog was shocked to see if learned helplessness was a cause of depression. How much must such a study assume, beginning with the categories, how to identify examples that fit in each category, the kinds and their exemplars, of learned helplessness, cause and depression. It also assumes that studies on dogs can be applied to humans, without much study of how these are alike and how different, say, regarding depression. We have already criticized the idea that such a study is ethical and worthwhile. We think our psychology has a better method, with the added benefit that one need not make so scientific an assumption as that one can torture and get away with it, or that the harm one does oneself in this is worth the supposed knowledge added by a single study. Those pursuing wisdom, again, do not take much time for setting up experiments.

The human things are spread out before us. Consider for example how much more can be learned from considering the American prison system, the whole very strange scene. The gangs are divided by races, and the reasons for this can be pursued. We can also consider an hypothesis such as the prisons are the universities of the underworld, what the causes are of this and what the political implications. A science of this sort can be very useful in cultivating foresight. But one could not gain much from experimental studies, even the sorts that are ethical or observe rights. One experiment which we indeed admit was beneficial found that average people could easily be seduced into shocking their fellows quite painfully, and another that groups can be broken into factions based on almost any accidental difference, such as the blue eyed and the brown eyed children in a class where a teacher conducted a very famous, if slightly questionable experiment.

In one study, a good example of the sort that do receive press and funding, the experimenter set out like a myth-buster to test the hypothesis that women are attracted by the smell of male sweat due to a hormone. We have long joked about this, as in the locker room, but the complex comedy assumes that there is a repulsion, while some people wonder if there is not an unconscious chemical attraction. It is known that pheromes are involved in love. What the researchers seemed to learn is that indeed no, women are not attracted by the smell of male sweat, but what really gets them is the smell of other women! Now, womanizers may gain some knowledge from this that is useful to their purposes, but as for the question of whether it is good to be a womanizer- a perennial question among men on the street- we will not conduct experiments, say chopping stats on domestic violence or considering the fortunes and fates of these, but rather, will inquire with Shakespeare regarding his Athenian Duke Thesius. It is the logoi, rather than these silly experiments, that are central to genuine scientific psychology. In Plato’s allegory, in Book Seven of his Republic, outside the cave, what appears are not only the beings reflected in water, but the natural beings themselves, though in the cave, what appears of these is but a “copy and a shadow.” This is an allegory of true psychology, and we suggest that the whole assumption that we have known what a scientific psychology would be has been mistaken.

How much more can be learned about love from a study of music that from any of these modern pseudoscientific studies! Present to us the entire corpus of knowledge drawn from data about love for the past century. We challenge this with our study of common music lyrics, if not the common sense of every middle school student in America. Let the reader decide which has profited us more in the pursuit of the knowledge of the soul and man. Let a panel of experts decide! And if we win this challenge, join us in this new pursuit of philosophic psychology. The study of Love is shockingly absent from modern psychology, and even from Aristotle, leaving the highest writings of the ancient world at Plato’s Phaedrus and Symposium, and perhaps the Biblical Song of Songs. Not until Romeo and Juliet and A Midsummer Night’s Dream do we find an account of natural or “heterosexual” love to rival the Greeks. Does psychology know what love is? How then can it claim authority over these most common forms of depression? What is more likely is that we do not believe that it is possible to achieve such a study. For most, this may be true, and most cannot even see the surface to be attracted. Often the pained lover will take a genuine theoretical interest in the science or study of love, but for others the study will not even begin, while psychology will claim for itself authority over these matters, as the authority to drug patients.

Let us then replace this experimental research with genuine studies leading toward a genuine knowledge. Experiments are indeed a part, but as you might agree that we have demonstrated, a very small part in the comprehensive science of the human soul.

More on Water and Salt

Again, the Flint crisis is caused by road salt in the water. This may effect all of us, and we should check wells and water supplies, and consider our runoff. Here are new branches of thought:

If we continue using road salt at all, we might think of a way to collect as much as possible. This can be done by drying the runoff water in reservoirs, even in the ditches on the side of the road.

Flint might think of harvesting rainwater in a big way: we would help design a system. Flint also might consider building its own water distillation factory, for the amount of money about to be spent for bottled water.

There are come political issues to consider, beginning with any pressure ever applied to Marc Edwards. We just heard today how the Koch brothers, the “libertarians,” hired private investigators to tail even an FBI agent, who threatened to murder them if they did not stop following him: see how they like it? Do not now consider this circumstance in light of John Locke, the right of self defense, and the suggestion that spying is an act of war, an assault, a and circumstance of self defense. But more directly, we refer these to our blog on Hillsdale College. Has anyone else had it with money in politics? Pressure and blocking the truth? The rigged game of the internet, where the multi-billion dollar companies have set the rules, destroying whole small businesses and citizens to earn 49 cents in add revenue by controlling our access and extorting payments? Have any other WordPress writers had it with this? Look at the comment of my first visitor on how difficult it was for him to leave a comment. We may demonstrate the access thing in court, because almost all my traffic is word of mouth except a few token and local searches. On the day of the Flint water crisis, Zero people who looked it up on any search engine arrived even accidentally at my site. This is money taking over the first amendment, and again it will not hold up in court.

Save America: Free the Web




The Cultivation of Psychology

As we gradually print the psych book over on the psych page, we will print suitable pieces as blogs. After the Cultivation, we have a page on our replacement for experimental psychology, rejected above.


Chapter II.1

The departments in the universities cultivate certain kinds of characters and studies to the exclusion of others. This became apparent when, studying at Grand Valley, we became acquainted with a study of Wittgenstein that had become a part of academic philosophy. Wittgenstein has to do with the narrowing of philosophy to the purpose of developing a clear and precise language for science, which is assumed to be the true pursuit of knowledge. Here philosophy is again a handmaid, and now fully an instrument! But then it occurred to us that these fields cultivate certain characters: a different sort of person takes up philosophy to question the hypotheses, pursue the mysteries of righteousness, or indeed to pursue wisdom. Different types of characters are attracted and thrive in the studies. Plato and Aristotle too, notoriously, attract different sorts of characters, as depicted in da Vince’s painting School of Athens, where Plato is pointing up and Aristotle down. The departments, though, fail to cultivate the pursuit of wisdom.

In psychology, the very type of character that is capable of pursuing the knowledge of man and the ability to heal may be excluded from the departments from the beginning. These are rather pursuing behaviorism and statistical studies, and even giving over their practice to neurology and pharmacology and what is called “social work.” Those who seek to pursue the knowledge of the soul in the modern university might better major in literature, law or criminology. It may be possible to pursue an entire graduate course of psychology without ever studying the human aspect of humans at all, and promptly take that six figure seat perhaps dealing with troublesome teens or suburban married couples, or working in the criminal justice system. Without saying much, one might do listening and having a medical doctor dispense pills after fifteen minute interviews. All the while, the consumer assumes that they are responsibly taking their patient to the authority regarding these matters, and even imagines for them the esoteria that would come with a genuine knower and healer of the soul. They may have never studied human beings at all.

The true scientific study of the soul is a very rare plant that grows at the pinnacle of inquiry. It is supported by an “innate” knowledge of man and perhaps a natural ability, rather than an art alone. The souls that are capable of even being drawn toward this study are rare. They are awake to the human questions in a way that does not allow much time for the trivialities that are the subjects of the funded studies or attempts to measure people. Strauss writes: “The proper starting point for studying the perfection of human nature is what is said about these subjects or the opinions about them (NRH, p.146). As with archaeology, we do sometimes gain insight from the conclusions and even enjoy the marvel of the scientific studies, but cannot ourselves spend all day digging, except on a leisured occasion.

The human study of man, excluded from the universities, is present in our age in two areas: Popular psychology and humanistic psychology. The better among the pop psychology writers have at least made acquaintance with the humanistic psychologists. These are Maslow, Carl Rogers, Rollo May and Victor Frankl, and Jung is sometimes included. Rogers has a critique of psychology similar to ours on many points, and as we Maslow, again, attempts an hierarchical understanding of the purposes. These generally emphasize consciousness rather than the unconscious. Frankl sets meaning and purpose at the top of what matters for the health of the soul, and may have coined the term psychohygenic. One radical historian of Freud back at Grand Valley had a class called “Mental Hygene” The attempt to placate the measure of scientific psychology is clear, though the allusion by analogy to the health of the soul provides access to this question in a scientific manner. Again, modern psychology does not consider the health of the soul.

The psychology textbooks sometimes conclude their opening chapters with “eclecticism” This means that rather than adhere to any particular school of psychology, they take pieces from various approaches. This ecclecticism decisively clinches the argument that there is no philosophic basis for any of the assumptions of modern psychology. There is no scientific knowledge that can order the parts into the whole science of psychology. Once this is admitted, it is clear that modern psychology lacks a philosophic basis and cannot be a science like the physical sciences. The understandings and diagnoses are as different as Skinner and Jung, with no scientific basis for choosing between or among them. It is this “eclecticism” that we seek to replace with the truly comprehensive science of the human things. Rather than a group of scattered pieces with no order or intelligible way these parts fit together, we note that since psychology is the science of one thing, the parts must fit together. We will argue that this is possible on the Socratic basis, though not possible on the basis of humanistic psychology.

Is Roadsalt Dissolving Our Pipes? / Rainwater and Distilled

The little problem in Flint may be a little more broad than we thought. Marc Edwards of Virginia Tech  has run into some interesting opposition, say from the EPA, who may have done more than ignore his attempts to warn us about corrosion and lead pipes. Maybe that is why Virginia Tech retired from the project. This very day, the likely cause is being ignored, and the news agencies just report what they are told by well paid and pressured agencies and experts. That’s ok, EPA: The President can see you, and now he’s looking! That’s ok, Flint emergency managers and DPW who could not foresee and figure out the problem. That’s OK, internet, who extorts for access and perverts the truth under the slightest gain or pressure. That’s ok, America, who puts up with this corruption in every aspect of our lives for a few pennies on a gallon or a coupon for pop. Drink up! If you get depressed about your lead poisoning, we have lots of nice prescription drugs for you, and maybe even a job in the industry! Just keep the campaign funds coming, Americans, because this is the slavish and corrupt government that we have voted for, nay, insisted upon. A small-looking dishonesty leads to a large effect, but then it is too late.

People do not understand water distillation and precipitation, and I always forget this. When I call NPR, the Governor’s office or WWJ, I have to remember that they do not understand that basically ONLY WATER precipitates so that if nothing else enters the collector, from the sky below the raindrop or from the collection method itself, the water is pristine, roughly 100% pure. But that is ok, Americans, drink up! I am bitter today.

More Thoughts on Flint and Rainwater

These inventions grow like trees in branches, or like frost on the window. That very factory up in Swiss Alps-  you know, the one that collects mountain spring water pouring out of the place high in the snow-peaked mountain, that place- what if they put my rainwater collection system up on their roof, and ran it down the wall and into the factory, over the bottles, along the assembly line at the bottling plant, and sold my bottled rainwater, as an addition to the distilled water and the water from the taps?

Idea # 2 for today: Automatic water distillers can be fit to furnaces designed for the purpose. Some engineering is required to get the house water to flow into the distiller when it is low, and to sense when the full five gallons is collected. Again, this is zero energy dollars in the winter, overcoming the biggest problem with stove top distilling. Good, now every home in America might have five gallons in reserve, and the lead is not supposed to go with the steam. The distiller must be cleaned occasionally- probably by guys in hazmat suits, like the painters.

The best idea of the day may be this: for the Flint water crisis, Dean Kamen has a waterbox that is a marvel, though it requires electricity. It uses pressure, the way the factory that bottles distilled water for 85 cents a gallon does. We, however, like low tech, and think that manual backup is the key to surviving the effects of our own technology.

Idea #3-4

Instead of plastic or cloth, one could use a sheet of glass, say from a door wall, or even a sheet of inert metal, and tilt the thing at a three dimensional diagonal, and all the water would flow into the collector.

The trick is to turn the two dimensional collecting surface into the three dimensional object required to focus the water.

We have also considered people in Flint running a six foot strip of plastic all along their back fences, propping up the one unsupported side, then putting in rocks and positioning collectors. This works well until the wind whips up. And until it snows! Then, collect the water right away from a place with open sky, watch for bugs, birds and sticks, bring it in and let it melt!


Oh, the Flint River is Salted

Having noticed that no one is asking why the Flint River water corrodes the pipes, and suspecting that there were some factory and campaign issues underneath, I tried without effect to ask, say, the governors office or NPR, why is the Flint River especially bad? Or does all the water in the country have to be treated with that nice anticorrosive chemical no one will talk about, the one with which Detroit treats their water?

Finally, I looked it up myself on Wikipedia:

The river water is highly corrosive, having high levels of chlorides (thought to be the result of, in part, road salt).[8]Chlorides do not pose a direct threat to fish, wildlife, or humans, but cause problems because they corrode lead and other metals in piping and plumbing.[9] According to a study by Virginia Tech professor Marc Edwards, a leading authority on water quality, showed that the Flint River water corrodes lead pipes at 19 times the rate of water piped from Detroit.[8]

Perhaps the DPW yard, where they store the salt, is by the river. And do they remove snow and then dump it in the river? I am stunned at the obtuse stupidity of my fellow humans. Not only do we not think of rainwater, but if anyone suggests it, oh, that is just too strange! Don’t think about water distillers! Never mind the science of distillation and precipitation! And here is more, because road salt in our wells and rivers in combination with our lead pipes may be only the beginning:

The state issued a notice informing Flint residents of their water containing unlawful levels of trihalomethanes, a chlorine byproduct linked to cancer and other diseases.[11] The Hurley Medical Center, in Flint, released a study in September 2015, which stated the proportion of infants and children with above-average levels of lead in their blood had nearly doubled since the city switched its water source.[11] Tests showed after water left Flint’s treatment plant, it was lead free, but by the time it reached the tap, it sometimes has elevated levels of lead. This happened because the Flint River water was more corrosive to lead pipes than the previously used water source; Lake Huron.[12] On October 16, 2015, Flint switched back to the Detroit water system for its source of water.[11]

Salt in water is what is called, in chemistry, a solution, as distinct from suspended particles that can be filtered. That means that the ground between the roads and our wells may not be filtering the road salt out of the groundwater. Just keep on fracking, keep the “campaign contributions” flowing, and yes, keep the poor off the internet with your extortion for access system so that the only people with time who care to think and warn us, who have no job to kiss ass over, are kept from ever telling this ignorant people, the thick Americans of the twenty-first century, to look up and see what is falling from the sky.

President Obama’s State of the Union Address

We are amazed by this speech, and if we recover, may write a few words about it. The Republican party is disintegrating and cannot produce a presidential candidate with the status as an American, of President Obama. That was one rhetorical point he achieved, turning the “America First” talk of ole Pat Buchannan into a point about overcoming bipartisanship to fix the problems of the nation. Campaign Finance reform, prescription drug abuse and the rigged game of an economy where the rich make the rules to favor themselves until deposed by a bigger fish using the same unscrupulous tactics,  gerrymandering: I want to see the Republicans produce a candidate of the stature of this great president. I want to see a Republican who even knows what those words mean- unarmed truth and unconditional love- let alone the idea that these will win out if our leaders only look to good of America first, rather than the petty self-interestedness promoted in our ideal of the used car salesman as the best human type. With Ben slipping in the polls, we centrist libertarians will be considering cross-voting, as we did in the last election. One thought that occurred in my amazement at this man is that he just won the election for the Democrats, if they can produce a candidate with the vision to follow Obama. Otherwise, Michelle might run, since as with the Clintons, we might get two for the price of one, and eight years of foreign policy experience. And by now, after seven years, we see a deep wisdom settling  way into the soul of Barak Obama.

But no one else, maybe one journalist at the Washington Post, seemed to notice.