Happiness

“We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”
-Thomas Jefferson

Whether or not you believe in god ( and you will notice that Mr. Jefferson omitted god from that quote above and instead said “creator”, because Thomas and most of our nation’s early founders were Deists, and not Christians as some would like us to believe. )
They believed in a creator, as much of the world’s religions agree on, so used that word to include all who agree with it, from Druids to Muslims to Christians, and all of these religions also agree on a great law, the so called Golden Rule: “Do unto others what you would have them do unto you” This quote is from Matthew, but it is the basis of every religion to the best of my knowledge.
We all pretty much agree with these thoughts, everyone from the lowest to the highest of us, but the problem lies in defining that “happiness” that we are all pursuing, and integrating that “pursuit” with the other rules for living given to us. If we are to follow the Golden Rule we must act with the intent to allow others those famous rights quoted by Mr. Jefferson. We must allow others the right to Life, and all that right allows. We cannot allow others to deny that right to us and our neighbor. We must allow others the right to Liberty, and all that allows. The Liberty to act to prevent others from denying these rights which were endowed to us by our Creator, whatever, or whomever we consider that creator to be.

If we do these things, and only if we do these thingswe can enjoy that last and most important right, the pursuit of happiness.   If we believe in our nation, and we believe in the rights that it was founded on, we must act like we believe in them, and stop those who would deny us and our neighbor those rights.

 

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Ex-GOP chair tells Trump-supporting evangelicals to”‘shut the hell up!”

Evangelicals love a president who cheats on all of his wives, brags about assaulting women by grabbing their pussies, and pays hush money to a porn star to keep her from talking to the press about his sex affair with her. Tony Perkins of the right-wing Family Research Council, said Trump gets “a do-over” because evangelicals “were tired of being kicked around by Barack Obama and his leftists.” But Michael Steele, the former Republican National Committee chair, has one thing to say to evangelicals about their unwavering support for the unfaithful Trump: “I have very simple admonition: just shut the hell up and don’t preach to me about anything ever again,” he said on MSNBC.

“After telling me who to love, what to believe, what to do and what not to do and now you sit back and the prostitutes don’t matter, the grabbing the you-know-what doesn’t matter, the outright behavior and lies don’t matter, just shut up!” Steele blasted.

“They have no voice of authority anymore for me,” Steele concluded.

Steele knows the truth: Trump’s sanctimonious base has made it clear that they will support Trump no matter what he says or does, and they’ll never stop scolding everyone (but Trump) about family values, either.

Ex-GOP chair tells Trump-supporting evangelicals to”‘shut the hell up!”

THE CITY AND THE STARS by Arthur C. Clarke

Thought I had read most of Sir Arthur’s books, but this I must have missed. Sounds like I would enjoy it ( as I have enjoyed most of what he wrote).

What Has Been Read Cannot Be Unread

Arthur C. Clarke, in case you never heard of him, was a British science fiction writer, science writer and futurist, inventor, undersea explorer, and television series host.   He was a co-writer of the screenplay for the 1968 film 2001: A Space Odyssey.  Clarke was a science writer, who was both an avid popularizer of space travel and a futurist of uncanny ability. On these subjects he wrote over a dozen books and many essays.  He was awarded a number of Hugo and Nebula awards, which along with a large readership made him one of the towering figures of science fiction. For many years Clarke, Robert Heinlein and Isaac Asimov were known as the “Big Three” of science fiction.

The City and the Stars takes place one billion years in the future, in the city of Diaspar. By this time, the Earth is so old that the oceans have gone and humanity has all but left. As far as the people of…

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THE SPACESHIP NEXT DOOR by Gene Doucette

I read this book a while ago when it first came out and recommended it to all my friends. It was just such a fun read, with a little plot twist here and there. No great big M. Night Shamalama twist, but unexpected and amusing. Just a great read to cleanse the palate.if you have been reading something heavy and intellectual.

What Has Been Read Cannot Be Unread

This was a delightful ‘sci fi’ …. and I use that term loosely ….. story about a small space ship which lands in some fields in a rural old mill area of Massachusetts,  and then …….. does nothing.  It just sits there.  For three years.  The government comes out to investigate, the army sets up shop to keep watch, a whole bunch of UFO nuts  believers park their RVs along the side of the road across from the fenced off space ship and beam their amazingly large arrays of digital equipment on the area, and then…. everybody goes back about their own business.

The protagonist is 16 year old Annie, so that makes this a YA, but not really.  Well, sort of.  Annie’s mother and father have split, her mother has cancer, and Annie is pretty much on her own, and brightens her days by knowing everyone and keeping tabs…

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NEMESIS GAMES by James S. A. Corey

Love this series, and I do NOT usually go in for a series

What Has Been Read Cannot Be Unread

The fifth in the hopefully never ending series The Expanse, by those two guy who write under one name.  For what has gone before, just put the author’s name in the search box here.

This series is space opera and character development and epic story telling and some nifty imagined futuristic science, and all those good things wrapped up in a hard sci fi package set in the future future, where we have technology to reach the stars via the ‘Epstein Drive’,  which is a modified fusion drive invented by [the fictional] Solomon Epstein and which enabled humanity to travel beyond Earth and the inner planets and colonize the Asteroid Belt and outer planets.

The drive utilizes magnetic coil exhaust acceleration to increase drive efficiency, which enables spaceships to sustain thrust throughout the entire voyage. A ship fitted with the efficient Epstein drive is able to run the drive continuously for acceleration to its goal and then after flipping at about…

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AFTER CLAUDE by Iris Owens

What Has Been Read Cannot Be Unread

This is one of those arch, darkly humorous works of what I call urban sardonic writings which were so popular in the second half of the last century. Kind of like Iris Murdoch with a lot more bile and bite.

Barbed and bitchy, it is almost scary. Here’s the plot: Harriet is leaving her boyfriend Claude, “the French rat.” That at least is how Harriet sees things, even if it’s Claude who has just asked Harriet to leave his Greenwich Village apartment. He found her in the stairwell crying one night, having been kicked out of a friend’s apartment, and he offered her to stay in his place for a couple of days until she found a new apartment. Ok, that was months ago, and she is still there.

Well, one way or another she has no intention of leaving. To the contrary, she will stay and exact revenge—or would…

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