Sunday, September 6

What I DON'T want to write about.

Lisa at That's Why recommended Natalie Goldberg's latest book, "Old Friend from Far Away." I've always liked Goldberg's exercises; Writing Down the Bones is a get off your butt and get your pen moving Bible.

In this latest book Goldberg reminds us of the "Here's what I do/don't want to say" prompt.

Here is what I don't want to write about:

I don't want to write about health insurance reform, healthcare, Obama, public option, Medicare, or any of it. If the opponents of reform had any ideas beyond the selfish greedy interests of the status quo, if they were unwilling to lie and fear monger in order to accomplish their goals, if their goals were in the best interest of any segment of the American population rather than their own party's soulless ambition, I would debate the facts and make a case. No one opposed to reform is interested in debate. They don't have a plan.

I don't want to write about Republicans. It must be awful to have nothing to base your politics upon except the failure of the current President. What is more awful is that so many Americans go along, squeeze their eyes shut to that which is in their own interest, in order to retain their prejudices.

I don't want to write about fake Christianists who drive so much of the "debate": those who scream god-talk the loudest are the most embarrassing. If the only words allowed in this debate or any other were truth, there would be silence for three solid days, at least. And Newt Gingrich would not open his silver-tongued mouth for a decade.

I don't want to write about him.

I want to write about Life. The culture of life that so many say we're lacking in this country, well yes, if we're willing to believe and promulgate the belief as a US Senator, that safety is in carrying a gun so that the Black president will not euthanize your mother?

The culture of life? Really. And we as a nation have this huge generation facing retirement and aging and they have health insurance, believe it or not, and all you have to do is say "death panel" and "grandma" and "abortion" and the collective freak out from people who HAVE... I just want to scream to them, you are MORTAL and your time on this earth is ticking away and you scream about it but what you really truly want is for a white leader to tell you you don't have to worry about sickness and death forever because he will keep you safe to the point of starting fake wars and torturing the brown people and paying off the insurance people with your money, and the white guy is, guess what, not Jesus Christ. Jesus was born to an unwed mother in Egypt. He didn't have a birth certificate. And his skin? You'd grab your gun if Jesus knocked on your door, asshole.


  1. I don't want to write about spineless democrats any more. I kinda feel like we're beating a dead donkey on tha one.

  2. Ditto: Blue Dog Democrats and neoliberals aren't making things better.

  3. I feel the same way.

  4. We're not really getting anywhere. You're right. But I suppose what motivates me from writing about such topics is the belief that maybe someone might be listening this time.

  5. That is why I stopped writing about it - that and a lot more.


    I love Goldberg.

  6. "Jesus was born to an unwed mother in Egypt. He didn't have a birth certificate. And his skin? You'd grab your gun if Jesus knocked on your door, asshole."


  7. Anonymous7:24 AM

    Just a small note to assure you and your readers that I am among the Baby Boom generation. I think you are right about some of my cohort but I assure you that not all of us are merely concerned about only ourselves, what we have, what we fear, what we want to screw somebody out of.

    I don't have much - a small bank account, a smaller retirement fund, no health insurance. I'm an independent contractor - something the "haves" of my generation and older thought of to screw the rest of us in my generation out of health insurance, among other things.

    And although I have no kids, it does make me utterly sick that what my generation will leave behind is far less and far more difficult than what was left to us.

    We are becoming a nation of two classes: the bloodsuckers (Wall Street is now scheming to buy up life insurance policies to bundle THEM into bonds that they can slice and dice) and the cannon fodder.

    I've been rich and I've been poor in my life. I assure you that neither status enobles. But, I'd rather be counted among the cannon fodder than the bloodsuckers any day. At least there is some honor in that.

    Thanks for letting this geezer vent. Best wishes.

  8. Had a Natalie Goldberg encounter in Taos last month. I DO want to write about that. If you ever have a thought in your head about paying for one of her workshops, please talk to me first.

    I'm with you on this post. Sounds like you need some knitting time.

  9. sigh. Same here. You summed up how I feel perfectly.

  10. I don't want to write about newspapers trying to rip-off,yes I do!

  11. Hmmm well yes, I wish this bullshit debate was not happening.
    But because it is happening- the greedy selfish, deluded would love nothing more than us throwing in the towel. Our silence lets their voices be heard more.
    No effing way!

    Even though it has been a national embarrassment on how rude & narrow minded, lacking compassion- even lacking in the ability reason, if they are not cut off of insurance now-- they just a layoff, or diagnosis of whet would then be a pre existing condition, or a catastrophic medical "event" that would yield a full blown medical bankruptcy. It floors me that they do not even have the foresight to essentially save their own asses down the road.

    But I am not going to be silent while the rabid right runs roughshod with the bullshit death panel & kill grandma propaganda, while they work to take away My & OUR right to demand better.

    They have figured out how to get the media attention, we need to fight fire with fire.
    A classic example is Blue Cross just sent notices to Michigan residents-- they are the lucky recipients of a 22% rate hike, effective Oct 1.
    Michigan, has THE highest unemployment rate in the nation, for a long time running.
    The only silver lining is they sent the announcement BEFORE Congress votes.... and so this is a golden opportunity to point out the need for reform.
    Insurance companies can collude with other insurance companies, to set prices for regions..... so if people try to shop for a better rate, the insurance companies are already a step ahead, having jointly raised prices.

    Now is the time to be screaming for the public option. As the president is about to have sessions to water down & waffle on this issue (candidate Obama was solidly in favor)....
    I argue now is not the time to go silent....
    rather we grab our torches & pitchforks & do our own version of angry villagers.

    I don't want to have the conversation.... but dammit we HAVE to.

  12. and "lilies never spin"

    but you do, BG.



  13. I too am weary of this rhetoric and downright bat shittery from the right, and it is true that the right does NOT have a plan beyond disrupting this president. But I am in agreement with Fran. This is not the time to stop rebutting this foolishness. It will be seen as capitulation, and we will never have this opportunity again. In my mind, if anything, we need to raise our voices even louder. We just can't lose this one.

  14. First - thank you for the link. And second - I love this post.

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