IN OUR ATTEMPT to find the proper perspective on a whole variety of current events, we've been examining the first, and biggest event in human history.
That was the event which made us human—which separated us from our animal cousins, the apes.
Last time, we spotted two political differences between humans and apes:
OUR TRADITIONAL HUMAN life-style, for hundreds of thousands of years, is that of our hunter-gatherer ancestors.
The last mere twelve thousand or so years, which we refer to as "history", are something of an anomaly—a point that I'll get to later, not now.
(Except to say that I will not be suggesting we should return to hunter-gathering.)
IT'S IMPOSSIBLE TO UNDERSTAND any event without the appropriate context.
For example, some current events:
A FEW WEEKS AGO John Stewart chastised Democratic Representative Steve Cohen for likening the repeated Republican lie that health care reform was a "government takeover" to the "Big Lie" strategy of Goebbels.
Stewart's point was that because the Nazis did such horrible things there could be no analogy between them and Republicans.
IT'S INTERESTING TO NOTE that the week after Wisconsin Republicans railroaded a bill through their legislature destroying the rights of middle class workers they were in Washington collecting funding from big corporations.
Scott Walker has touted his approach in Wisconsin as a game plan for other states with Republican majorities, but in fact it's the same old bait-and-switch that's already being played out across the country, and in Congress, at the national level.
YOU CAN ALWAYS TELL what the right-wing is secretly up to by paying attention to where they attack liberals.
If a Newt Gingrich expresses outrage at Clinton's sexual behavior you can be sure he's having an affair himself.
If a Peter T. King commences McCarthy-like hearings on Islamic terrorism, you can be sure he supported terrorists in Ireland.
If a Larry Craig takes repeated legislative stands against gays...
You get the idea.
So I should have realized, about a month ago, what has become completely clear in the time since.
MY FATHER DIED peacefully early last Saturday morning.
Those who have read the daily mull for some years may remember his memoirs of a childhood spent in a small town in Iowa. (You can find them here.)
The following obituary, composed by my brother, captures him perfectly: