Saturday, October 10, 2009

A Tip Of The Hat To Reader Don

Good Evening Friends,

This morning I posted my thoughts about Obama receiving the Nobel Peace Prize. I was not surprised to receive a comment from Reader Don. Now, I don't know the man personally but I do appreciate him taking the time to read what I have to say. I also respect his views. I know that a lot of you who follow Tioga George's forum are familiar with Don's, well, outspoken opinions and often take exception to what he has to say. So do I. But I can also say that he is not a quitter, vile or disrespectful in general. He is also hardheaded, Proudly Conservative, unabashedly critical and defensive almost to the point of being annoying. I would guess that He is doggedly loyal to his friends and generous to his own charities. He challenges beliefs that do not neatly mesh with his own, yet this in itself can be a positive thing because many of his views are held by many others in this country and Progressive Liberals like me must accept and make room at the table for those who do not espouse hate and fearmongering. We all get our 'facts' from a variety of sources in this life - from those who hold chairs at universities to those who warm bar stools, from the printed word to Talking TV Heads on all sides of the political spectrum to informed (and uninformed) social gatherings where issues of the day are discussed. Don reminds me of my neighbor Jerry. We talk over the fence from time to time. We totally disagree on many political matters but totally agree on fundamental things like personal freedom and the threat of Big Brother. Jerry carries a shotgun around on his riding mower and is hell on gophers but sets food out for the wild deer even though they anger him when they eat his garden.

Today Don, in his own way, had kind remarks for President Obama, and while mixed with comments that I don't agree with, I do salute him for understanding that we all must unite to make America the force that will lead us out of the mess that the world is currently in.

In other words I'd have a cold brew and a spirited disagreement with him in a Mexican cantina on most any hot afternoon.



  1. Pretty close Fran. I am a loyal friend to a few. You know what they say. A friend will help you move, a true friend will help you move a body. ;)

    I do understand completely that I come off as hard headed and yes even annoying to more than a few. I do not apologize for that. I do hope that people would understand my beliefs and comments are not personal but are made on principals. There's a saying in AA. Principals before personalities. I'm sure this makes sense to many of you but for me it means I am very stong in stating how I feel, and when it seems like I'm attacking you I'm really attacking ideas that I feel are taking this country down the wrong road.

    Of course I also understand that I could be completely wrong but based on a few facts I believe I'm actually in the majority. As I stated earlier there are now more people that disapprove of the president than approve. I know Gallup still has him above 50% but Rasmussen and Zogby have him below. This information means I'm not the only one who feels the way I do. I know most people aren't as outspoken as I am and that's ok.

    I had a conversation with my sister last night that made me think a bit. She is conservative but didn't want to discuss politics with me because of my methods of discussion.

    So I guess what I'm saying is I'm going to try to temper my inflamatory remarks and try to be less confrontational. That would probably make everyone happy.

  2. For Don,

    Thanks for the thoughtful reply. I was talking with a friend who is a fountain of factual information and he supplied me with the following, I hope you find it useful! :

    How do we know – in fact, how does Michael Moore know – that the top 1 percent accounts for more financial wealth than the bottom 95 percent of American households put together?

    Thanks for asking. “How do we know?” is an important question to ask.

    In his film “Capitalism: A Love Story,” and on his website, Michael Moore cites an analysis by Citigroup’s research staff. Here’s the exact source:

    The finding that in 2001, “the top 1 percent accounted for more than the net worth of the bottom 95 percent of households put together” appears on page 4 of the Equity Strategy report published October 16, 2005 by Citigroup Investment Research, “Plutonomy: Buying Luxury, Explaining Global Imbalances.” The full text and tables of the report are posted at

    In a detailed evaluation published October 1, 2009, the St. Petersburg Times examined this matter further. They reported that their analysis of data collected in 2004 and separate data collected in 2007 yielded the same results as the Citigroup’s data analysis that Michael Moore discussed: in 2001, 2004, and 2007, the net worth of the top 1 percent accounted for more than the net worth of the bottom 95 percent of American households put together. The St. Petersburg Times commentary notes that although the calculations can yield different results if some data are excluded – for example, the figure would be higher if the 400 richest families were not excluded, or lower if the value of boats, airplanes, helicopters, second homes, businesses, and hobbies were excluded – the point remains the same: the richest 1 percent of Americans own a vastly disproportionate share of the nation's wealth.

  3. I understand about who has the wealth.

    But don't you find it odd that Michael Moore makes a documentary that suggests capitalism is bad yet capitalism is what allowed him to make that movie?

    But to suggest that it's bad for the top 1% to have the wealth they have is to suggest also that our way of life for the last 225+ years is bad. I can't quite climb on the boat yet. ;)

  4. Our way of life isn't bad, and we don't need to throw capitalism overboard, but maybe some tweaking is necessary so the vast disparity of wealth doesn't get worse and there is a little more distribution of at least some of the rewards of capitalism to the lower echelons. We already have "regulated capitalism" (not laissez faire capitalism) and changes or more regulation may be a good idea.