What's Tony Thinking

100,000 and One

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May 29, 2020 — We’ve endured. We’ve endured 100,000 deaths. We’ve endured a deficit, no, a travesty, of Presidential leadership. We’ve endured a lack of preparedness. We’ve endured cavalier dismissals, “We’ve got it all under control.” We’ve endured a lack of testing and an absence of equipment. We’ve endured a Presidential compassion deficit and humanity vacuum. We’ve endured a... Read More

Finding Encouragement in Watching the Movie “Contagion”

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May 29, 2020 — I was a little apprehensive about watching the 2011 movie “Contagion.” But we did. And I experienced something I had not expected — encouragement. Sure, there were reasons for, “Gosh, they saw it all coming.” The movie does depict how a virus like this COVID-19 is transmitted unwittingly and insidiously — by touch, laughter, contact... Read More

The Betrayal of the Elites

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May 27, 2020 — Reader, Don Mayer, drew my attention to a recent Seattle Times/ NY Times article on the distribution of funds to hospitals from the Cares I Act. Case in point is the Seattle-based Providence St. Joseph Health Care System. Here’s the “money line” so to speak: “So far, the riches are flowing in large part to... Read More

Trump’s Push for Religion May Backfire — for Religion

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May 27, 2020 — During the COVID crisis President Trump has done two things to express his support for religious institutions and curry favor with his evangelical Christian base. Most recently he declared worship “essential.” He indicated that Governors better buckle to his command. “So I’m correcting this injustice in calling houses of worship essential. I call upon governors... Read More

America the Beautiful

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May 25, 2020 — In a Memorial Day message to her congregation my colleague, Talitha Arnold in Santa Fe, reflected on the hymn by Katherine Lee Bates, “America the Beautiful.” Bates, a professor at Wellesley College, wrote it after scaling Pike’s Peak while teaching in a summer session at Colorado College. I’ve always loved this hymn, though there have... Read More

We’re Not All Trumpsters Here

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May 23, 2020 — A longtime friend, Wallowa County resident and leader, sent a great response to my post yesterday, “From the Wallowas.” I quote it, with permission, in its entirety. Then I will add a few clarifying comments about my original post in response. A few comments re your last post. Yes, there are a lot to trumpsters here,... Read More

From the Wallowas

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May 22, 2020 — As indicated in my post two days ago, we are in Wallowa County, in the northeastern corner of Oregon, where my grandparents lived and my parents grew up, as well as the longtime site of the family cabin. It’s chilly here. Down to freezing last night. We’re at 4,500′. I’d say the snow level is... Read More

Go East, Old Man

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May 20, 2020 — Doesn’t have quite the same ring to it as, “Go West, Young Man!,” does it? Nevertheless, we head east today. East to Wallowa County in Northeastern Oregon. As readers of this column know it is the site of a family cabin, now hosting its fifth generation of the family. In six more years, this humble... Read More

Why So Many People Are Unhappy in Retirement

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May 19, 2020 — I was talking recently with a good friend who owns his own, successful, business. He had been reading my new book, Useful Wisdom, and the chapter entitled “Purpose.” He said that his primary purpose, these days, is mentoring the half dozen younger people working in his office, one or more of whom will take over the business... Read More

On Government Aid Packages

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May 17, 2020 — Thus far in the pandemic the House and Senate have passed, and the President signed, two massive aid packages. These have included help for small businesses, a boost for those receiving unemployment compensation, and checks directed at individuals whose income falls below a certain ceiling. There has been the predictable complaining about slowness of money... Read More