Author Archives: hessd

About hessd

Here is all you need to know to follow this blog. I am an old man and I love to think about why we say the things we do. I've taught at the elementary, secondary, collegiate, and doctoral levels. I don't think one is easier than another. They are hard in different ways. I have taught political science for a long time and have practiced politics in and around the Oregon Legislature. I don't think one is easier than another. They are hard in different ways. You'll be seeing a lot about my favorite topics here. There will be religious reflections (I'm a Christian) and political reflections (I'm a Democrat) and a good deal of whimsy. I'm a dilettante.

Super Wednesday

Since I’m writing this on Tuesday morning, I have no idea what will happen in all those primaries. What I want to happen is pretty clear to me though and I think this might be the right time to think … Continue reading

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Zen agency

I’ve been thinking about agency a lot lately. A agency is fundamental to being human; the costs of giving up on it are catastrophic. By “agency,” I mean only having the sense of acting on your own behalf. In Martin … Continue reading

Posted in Living My Life, Paying Attention, Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment

A complaint about Thomas Edsall

Who is Thomas B. Edsall and what is the complaint.  Thomas B. Edsall is one of the best things that happens in a week of The New York Times.  He publishes a column on (most) Wednesdays.  The column is about, … Continue reading

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Going uphill requires resources

The summary I found for the recent movie, Downhill, starts like this: “Barely escaping an avalanche during a family ski vacation in the Alps, a married couple is thrown into disarray…” I don’t mean to imply that that is inaccurate, … Continue reading

Posted in Love and Marriage, Movies | Leave a comment

Heaven as dessert

I don’t think this is a totally crazy metaphor. I think it’s mostly crazy. Let me deal first with the instance in which I think it is not crazy. The way heaven is pictured in some of the slave songs … Continue reading

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I feel so judged

There was a time—even I remember it—when someone who was really good at something, was admired for it.  Or “respected;” it depends to a certain extent on what it was.  I don’t think we are entirely out of that era—not … Continue reading

Posted in Communication, Political Psychology, Sustainability | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

“Because I’m worth it.”

It’s a powerful sentiment. No question about it. It is a sentiment, however, not a fact. I think it works as well as it does because it sounds like a fact. We are accustomed to statements about “worth” and this … Continue reading

Posted in Communication, Economy, Political Psychology, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment