Back in August, I wrote a post about the supposed race to the bottom with ebooks, refuting some nonsense written by an establishment bonehead. This meme won't die. People are still convinced that new ebooks are going to be priced at ten cents, and writers will starve, and this will cause a second Great Depression where banks will close and people will be forced to buy Kindles with food stamps, and then the earth will enter another ice age where all the bunnies will freeze to death.
The other day I found her passport in her drawer when I was putting away my dad's laundered handkerchiefs. I wish I hadn't. For the purpose of my story, she should have it with her. I sat on my dad's bed and flipped through page after empty page. No stamps. No exotic locales. No travel-worn smudges or creases. Just the ID information and my mother's black-and-white photo which if it were used in a psychology textbook on the meaning of facial expressions would be labelled: Obscenely, heartbreakingly hopeful.
I have been very outspoken in my opposition to cuts in what I would call the means-tested entitlement programs: Medicaid, food stamps, and all of that. I feel very, very strongly that those cuts as proposed are unjust, but I am not prepared to label Ronald Reagan a "sinner. "It seems to me that when you invoke the adjective "moral" you must be careful to distinguish what it is you mean by that.
What are people released from prison expected to do? How are they expected to survive? Can't get a job, locked out of housing, and even food stamps may be off limits. Well, apparently what we expect them to do is to pay hundreds or thousands of dollars in fees, fines, court costs, and back child support (which continues to accrue while you are in prison).
I am extremely proud of our remarkable men and women who serve in our military, but the reality is that this is a shrinking percentage of the American population. Unfortunately, this has resulted in a growing disconnect between our military and civilian population. At one time, we had participation from nearly every American. Victory gardens, metal collections, saving stamps and bonds-everyone did their part to support our military. We simply don't do that anymore.
To get to Earth from the edge of the solar system, depending on the time of year and the position of the planets, you need to pass through at least Poland, Prussia, and Turkey, and you'd probably get stamps in your passport from a few of the other great powers. Then as you get closer to the world, you arrive at a point, in the continually shifting carriage space over the countries, where this complexity has to give way or fail. And so you arrive in the blissful lubrication of neutral orbital territory.