A Bit 'o Random Musings on Politics, Religion, and Anything Else That Passes Through My Crazy Head

Monday, September 30, 2013

Has It Come To This?

You know, I really like America.  It's not a perfect country, by any means, but it strives towards glorious ideals of equality and freedom.  I think most Americans realize that shutting down the government during a fragile economic recovery is a bad idea.  At least, I hope they realize it.  It is stupid, stupid, stupid.

Many people are blaming the Republicans for this imminent shutdown of the government, and I agree with them.  Republicans, you know that Obama is not going to let you defund his signature legislative achievement.  I understand you think it's a bad bill.  So why not make it better instead of repealing it?  Do you have any constructive ideas about health care?  I haven't heard anything except "Repeal Obamacare."  If I'm missing something, let me know.  Right now many people in this country don't have health coverage, and if they have a medical emergency, the rest of us pay for it.  What do you propose to do about it?  If you have no better solution than the Affordable Care Act, why do you even think you deserve to be in Congress?  How about coming up with an alternative instead of bashing those who are trying to solve a problem?

However, I'm also annoyed with, and fully willing to blame Democrats too.  Democrats, Obama-care isn't perfect, and a refusal to delay or amend it is just as pig-headed and stupid as the Republicans' refusal to fund the entire government without removing Obamacare.  There is no law so perfect that it can't be improved - maybe you can come up with some way to compromise with Republicans?

Unfortunately both sides are convinced that they are utterly right that I don't think a compromise is anywhere in our future.  Will we ever be able to get our country working again?  I'm just so frustrated with both sides right now that I can not even express it in words!

Maybe Jed Bartlet can express it best:

"Then Shut it Down," Jed Barlet, The West Wing

Monday, September 16, 2013

May Your E-files Be Accepted!

Well it's that time of year again, when I actually have time for other things in my life besides work.  Which is good, because I have a 62 mile bike ride at the beginning of October that I should really, you know, try not to suck at.  More on that in later posts!

In honor of today's tax deadline (in case you don't know, today is the deadline for extended returns for corporations and partnerships), I give you "Twas the Night before (Tax) Filing."

Twas the night before filing, when all through the firm,
Each CPA was typing, and beginning to squirm,
The tax returns were printed with much plaudit,
In hopes that the IRS never would audit.

The clients were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of refunds all danced in their heads.
The partner with his pen, and I with my pad,
Had just settled down to find out what changes he had.

When out in my cube there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from my chair to see what was the matter.
Away to my telephone I flew in a flash,
Pushed the button real hard and my teeth I did gnash.

The dim light on my desk did pour,
Gave the lustre of twilight to old drafts of yore.
When what with my wondering ears should I hear,
But a recruiter with promises of a new career.

With a little old lie, so clever and slick,
I knew in a moment I didn't believe this chick.
More good than true her stories they came,
Of better jobs calling my name.

On bonus!  On Pay Hikes!  On wonderful things!
Which couldn't possibly come without strings!
To the top of the company, she promised I might
Ascend with an effort so sleight!

And then, in a twinkling and inkling so wise,
I realized while amidst all my office supplies,
That each job its pros and cons would bring,
And now, busy season ended, life's on the upswing.

Sorry, this may sound like bragging - but I do occasionally get calls from recruiters promising me an awesome job (and let me tell you, it's tempting when you are weak during "busy season").  But generally I feel really lucky to (a) be employed, and (b) have opportunities to learn a lot from people a lot smarter than myself.  Having had quite a few co-workers leave the firm I work in, I've seen both sides and feel like I know and am able to choose better because of it.  Now that busy season is over, I'm looking forward to being more involved in church service, seeing my friends on a regular basis, and re-introducing fresh fruits, vegetables, and non-microwaveable items to my diet.

A Merry Busy Season to all, and to all a Good Night!

Monday, September 9, 2013


In middle school and high school, I knew a girl who was perpetually happy - she never seemed to have a bad day.  Admittedly, she annoyed the living daylights out of me most of the time.  I used to think it was just an act, that no one could genuinely be that happy ALL THE TIME!  But as I got to know her, I realized that was just her default mode.  She was a modern day Pollyanna who could see the good in any situation.

As I've grown older, I realized I'm probably more like her than I care to admit.  I do look on the bright side and tend to (over?)emphasize the positive side of things.  Of course I readily admit that there is evil in the world, and truly heinous people who commit unspeakable crimes.  But there are also people who are good, and who try to do the right thing.  That's what I love about the video below, which is about ordinary people doing good and helping others, even in the face of devastating evil.  It's not limited to Americans, of course, but I do love these Americans and what they represent.  'Merica, baby.

"Boatlift, An Untold Story of American Resilience," Narrated by Tom Hanks

Meanwhile, I'll be over here, crying all the tears...

Monday, September 2, 2013

Origins of The Blog

Sometimes I wonder why politics and religion are so intertwined for me.  Most of the time I think it's probably because they are both rooted in my beliefs about justice and mercy, and how important kindness and love should be in our society.

But, my twin interests may have had a more prosaic beginning.  This blog may stem from the fact that, as a child, I often confused Wilford Woodruff (4th President of the Mormon church) and Woodrow Wilson (28th President of the United States).  They have almost nothing in common except that both their names start with "W."  So maybe some deep part of my subconscious still associates politics and religion because of this. 

Am I the only one afflicted with this confusion?  To this day, I still have to think about it when I refer to either of these men to make sure I say the correct name!