ENOUGH! (for a while)

I am leaving America. Just for a week, I think. I have a return ticket.

I am leaving behind cable news and all the local newspapers. I need a break from the divisiveness and chaos has taken over America, and which will continue for a least another year, probably four, and maybe ten. I am tired of it and sad. But I know, that when I return, I hope to be refreshed because if I go and hide from the noise, lies and confusion, things will only get worse. It is still my responsibility to try to right this floundering, sinking, stinking ship of state.

I am going to a land where, as much as anywhere in the world, people seem to agree about how they want to live together. They have developed shared values that they try to follow, as much as possible. They also seem to value the concept that they all should share in the prosperity, and that huge disparities in wealth are harmful to their society. They also feel that they are experiencing a better quality of life because their government provides for basic services, such as health care, elder care, child care, high quality education through college, and even a criminal justice system that emphasizes rehabilitation and reentry into society.

Yes, they are a much smaller, and more homogenous country. Yes, they have problems with immigration and probably racism, and yes, they pay a lot in taxes. But I don’t expect to stay there, I just want a break from all of this.

America at this time is badly split. It seems to be mostly urban vs. rural, with the suburbs kind of mixed, depending on which cities and states they are near. These two areas have very different cultures, speak different languages and even seem to have different facts. They focus on very different issues, which the other side feels are irrelevant.

There is no one in sight who is even trying to bring people together. It seems an almost impossible task. It has been worse before, but once that led to a long and brutal civil war, Many of the issues, and many of the people on each side, are related to the people who could not resolve their differences 150 years ago.

I am going away with my wife and some friends. When we travel we often find it easy to talk to new people with new ideas. Perhaps I can gain a new perspective. At least I can get a rest.

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