Selflessness is the first principle of political life, as described here.   The admirable idea is that a politician should always act solely in the public interest.   But what does that mean?  If a politician is ambitious, he or she will need to raise funds beyond what is necessary to attend events in the district and…

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Variation on a Theme by Dante

My memory is a little shaky here (the variations were all written in 1965), but I believe the theme here comes from an English translation of  La Vita Nuova (The New Life), rather than from The Divine Comedy.  In any event, the lady in question is Beatrice. Variations on a theme by Dante 1965 So…

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Variations on a Theme by Houseman

When I was twenty or twenty-one, I was very much under the influence of my college friends who were serious musicians, despite the fact that I was devoid of musical talent myself.   When I grasped the idea that serious composers of music often took musical themes from other composers and played with them in their…

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In Defense of the Political Life

I'm not sure when I started calling myself a politician.  The only political office I've been elected to was my high school student council.   Although I described myself as a political consultant for many years before I retired, I never made much money at it.   The simple fact is that it dawned on me one…

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Second Translation

And this is my second translation from Baudelaire's Fleurs du Mal: Very Far From Here by C.  Baudelaire (tr. 1967) This is the sacred chamber where That much bejeweled maiden fair Tranquil and ever-ready there Raising her breasts to the skies aloft Hears the drainpipes crying oft. It is the room of Dorothy, Then breeze…

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Directly-elected Mayors

I have long been an advocate for directly-elected mayors for cities of any size, say greater than 25 or 50 thousand in population.  For smaller cities, the usual practice here in California of having the mayor elected by fellow Councilmembers is okay, because the job is largely ceremonial.  But the larger the city, the larger…

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Money in Politics

It's hard for most people to understand, but the only effective way to control the influence of money in politics is to limit the amount that can be spent.  Unfortunately, the Supreme Court, using logic that escapes me, has said that you can't do that.   Given the political reality that the Burger Court's mistaken decision…

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Light Verse?

I wrote the following in my twenties, and it has long been a favorite of mine.   Is it light verse?   Is it something more? You decide. A PLEASANT CHAT I spoke to Death the other day. We had a pleasant chat. He told me he was on his way… But, here, no more of that.…

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My First Published Poem

From Copperfield's Literary Magazine, about twenty years ago Eskimo Pie Lick. Sliding along the slippery chocolate Surface with the moisture drops. Getting cold, getting nothing. Crack. Breaking through the black coating To the white sweetness beneath. Taking all the coat off, taking my time. Drip. Learning to live with sticky fingers, Wiping dribbles with my…

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I have changed my mind about comments.   I am going to allow moderated comments on all new posts. Thanks GUY

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A blog about all the arts, including politics
"for 'twere absurd to think that nature in the earth bred gold, perfect in the instant;
there must be remote matter." - Ben Jonson
"I don't know what the question is, but art is the answer." - Guy Conner

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