e-commentary: 17 Years Of Fun And Counting. Almost 800! (December 28, 2020)

. . .

          Peaking behind the curtain, lifting up the carpet, looking under the table.  Honing skills, helping folks, having fun.  Venturing answers to questions that have not yet been asked, seeking to elucidate as much Truth on as many issues in as few words as possible, striving to leave a “commentary of record” for Clio’s consideration.  Chronicling the American experiment and the American experience, the theory and the practice, the promise and the performance, and the aspirations and the aftermath.  Doing something was paramount.  

           “Polymath” was apropos but too nerdy; many folks are turned off by a lot of math.  “essay.org” and “e-essay.org” were taken.  “e-ssay.org” turns out to be the perfect abbreviation of “electronic essay” and the original title.  In the first few years, taut, short, cogent, succinct and focused “e-ssays” told people what to think rather than suggesting things to think about during the  following week.  Reveal, don’t tell, they wisely decree.  Conversation provides a rapid ping-ponging of ideas.  After a few years, “e-commentary.org” emerged and provided “electronic commentary” developing dialogue to allow the reader to listen in on the discussion rather than being told what to think.  “e-poem” was always there under wraps.  The pieces are laced with many little lagniappes for the diligent reader to discover and deduce. 

          Almost two thirds of the posts this year addressed fears, phobias, hopes, questions, concerns, comments, anxieties and observations on Covid-19 and the thing called the PanICdemic.  2020 was the year of the Virus, etc.; 2021 is the year of the Vaccine, etc.  Stay tuned.

          The “On [Traits / Characteristics]” Series acknowledges the father of the essay, Michel de Montaigne, who explored individual traits and personal characteristics and shared personal ruminations and anecdotes about society in his celebrated collection Essais (e-ssais?).  e-ssays ruminate on respect, fear, admiration, irreverence, success, self-esteem, regret, standards/quality, loyalty, hypocrisy, honesty, empathy, joy, mudita, etc.

          The “Less Government Regulation” Series posits examples where government regulation may suffocate and free markets may suffice.  An e-commentary in the series in 2009 advocates for regulation of Google/Alphabet in an economy that is now pockmarked by monopolization of every industry in America.  Subsequent e-commentary challenges the overweening role of the Frightful FiveFacebook, Amazon, Apple, Google/Alphabet and Microsoft.  A half dozen megabanks and six media conglomerates control and manage our money and our minds.  In an economy without any price discovery, the completion of the “General Theory of Economics” is forced into remission.

          The “Boycott” Series suggests that readers treat dollars like votes in the marketplace and use them to support and reject policies and activities.  An e-commentary in the series in 2008 proposed a boycott of Facebook because it and the other tech beasts and behemoths are not friendly.  Boycotting the only supplier of an essential good or service is problematic and is addressed.  An e-commentary in 2011 proposed boycotting big banks and depositing funds in and supporting local credit unions.  An early e-commentary in 2006 implores the reader never to boycott and always to buy into the franchise, even if voting appears to and may be futile in a country with only one political party, the War and Wall Street Party.

          The “First Monday In October” Series debuted in 2010 with a discussion of “strict constructionism/originalism” in the context of gun control that should resolve the debate over the proper paradigm for all and once.  Subsequent e-commentary in the Fall series provide insight into the Supreme Court, courts and the state of the law, justice, crime and punishment in America.  The emerging irrelevance and illegitimacy of the current Supreme Court is discussed for the first times in 2011 and then in 2012 and developed in subsequent e-commentary.  Regular visits to the Court to observe the hired help further inform the analysis in the draft “Treatise on Law” now in nearly final form.

          The “Graduation Advice” Series is inspired by the national treasure “Wear Sunscreen” crafted by Mary Schmich and proposes a pithy suggestion for graduates of school and participants in life.  Advice was dispensed in 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020

        The greatest threat to the Planet is the threat to the Planet.  Posed and poised and poisoned by Man.  [Wo]Man versus [Mother] Nature?  Plastics and plutonium versus People?  Is Man the mortal enemy who must be contained by whatever means?  Is a carbon fee and dividend program the long-shot market-based solution capable of salvaging the vulnerable blue marble

          Over the years other e-commentary reviews everything from the human causes to the economic consequences of actions and inaction.  e-commentary addresses everything from philosophy to foreign policy to domestic polity; from the intertwined 3Es (from energy to environment to economics); from war to war to war; from sports to technology to society; from race to class to gender; from guns to gold to the Great Wall of Canada; from war to war to a possible antidote to war; from newspapers to the press/media to journalism; from the First Amendment, to the Second Amendment, to the Third Amendment, to the Fourth Amendment, to the Eighth Amendment, to the Balanced Budget Amendment and to the Term Limits Amendment; and from A – (AIIB, CFETS, CIA, CIPS, FBI, FDIC, IMF, INE, LIBOR, MICAC, NATO, NPR, NSA, SDR, SWIFT, TARP, USA PATRIOT ACT, ZIRP) Z. 

          After considerable thought and development, the “Awards and Incentives Project” rolled out and now includes four annual awards with others under construction.

          The “Cameo In Courage Award” challenges the award given by the establishment to other members of the establishment.  Society needs an award that rewards those who are truly courageous.  Awards were made in 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020.  

          The “Noble Prize In Eco-nomics” identifies those who develop and advance eco-nomic ideas to promote the public weal and the common good.  The award serves as a challenge and counterpoise to the “Nobel Prize In E-con-omics” awarded by the Swedish Central Bank to those who advance ideas that promote the interests of the wealthy and well-connected.  Awards were made in 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020

          The “Noble Prize In Jurisprudence” celebrates the work of someone who really knows something about jurisprudence and the impact of courts, judges, lawyers and police on the lives and livelihoods of ordinary citizens.  The award recognizes a person who or institution that lives the conviction that men and women should establish and respect some norms and standards that are promulgated clearly to all and enforced equally in favor of and against all.  Awards were made in 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020

          The “Pushitzer Prize In Commentary” honors inspiring and inspirational writing that does not necessarily reflect the dominant viewpoints and worldviews.  Awards were made in 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020

First–hand on–the–ground dispatches from the March for Women, the March for Science, the March For Our Lives and the April 19 March are available including lists of the clever and inspiring signs sported by participants.

          The requisite moving memoir is now available.  The book tour is still not yet booked.  However, although “Analog Knowledge Devices (“AKD”)” will soon be worth their weight in gold, this production saves paper and is only available e-lectronically.     

          WordPress was and in many ways still is a primitive and disappointing platform, but it was not Blogger.  Time to develop a better platform first.  WP did not allow one to change the font or even to tab over to create a simple paragraph.  At some time during this journey, WP did provide for “Categories” and then allowed for hyperlinks; hyperlinks are righteous.

          Over the years, a menagerie of speakers and characters such as “A” / “B” and “GO1 [Gun Owner1]” / “GO2 [Gun Owner2]” and “3” / “6” / “9” among others debuted and debated issues.  In recent years, “J” and “K” emerged as the primary characters in the ongoing dialogue and debate.

      The “Bumper sticker of the week” started out as a spoof on the shallow and callow “bumper sticker” nature of our public discourse and became the playful signature sign off concluding each piece every week.

          Looking back, the undertaking is an extended serialized novel about the American experience presented in a series of weekly poems developed as dialogue that allows all of us in some small way possibly to . . . immanentize the eschaton

. . .

Bumper stickers of the week:

What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not possibly succeed under any circumstances?

“Do.  Or do not do.  There is no try.”  Yoda

“Not being heard is no reason for silence.”  Victor Hugo, Les Misérables

“It doesn’t require many words to speak the truth.”  Chief Joseph

Otter:  “I think this situation absolutely requires a really futile and stupid gesture be done on somebody’s part.”     Bluto:  “We’re just the guys to do it.”  “Animal House” (1978)

“You do not merely want to be considered just the best of the best.  You want to be considered the only one who does what you do.”  Jerry Garcia

Think big, think long.

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