Posts Tagged ‘Paris Climate Accord’

Letter from Claverack 06 04 2017 Comforting things in touchy times…

June 5, 2017

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The pearl grey of twilight is settling on the Hudson Valley and I’m playing the Joan Baez station from Amazon Prime Music in the background, wrapped in the warmth of a fleece pullover as the day has been infused with a chill closer to October than June.

We have had 4.5 inches more rain than normal this year.  Last year was a drought; this year a flood. Saturday started with rain and then became a brilliant early spring day – except it’s not quite early spring anymore.

At the Farmer’s Market, I picked up fair trade coffee and some incredible chevre from an amazing artisanal cheese maker that I discovered at the winter market.  In a way, I feel disloyal to the other cheese purveyors I frequent and her cheeses are over the top wonderful.  She is in the market, center aisle, on the east end.  Goats and Gourmets.

And all this is very hygge.  And oh, my god! Do I need hygge right now!

Donald Trump has removed us from the Paris Climate Accords.  It was not unexpected and it is disappointing.  As I watch, from my point of view, I am witnessing the President of this country diminish us with every move he makes.

It is something that saddens me every day and I know I must live with this for the rest of his term, be it four or eight years.  All this impeachment talk is not very real as it is hard, as it should be, to impeach a president.  It’s my hope that we will have only one term of this man and that the country will elect someone in 2020 who will deal with the very real problems we face.

Trump trumpeted he would spend money to restore the infrastructure of this country which is in desperate need of restoration.  His plan for that seems, to me, a little incoherent.

As is my custom, from my Catholic childhood, I light candles at church on Sunday when I come back from communion.  One candle is for me.  Call me selfish but one candle is just for me.  Another is for the people I know who are having health issues.  It includes the daughter of my friend Clark Bunting, whose daughter suffered a traumatic brain injury and the son of a former boyfriend who has a son who also suffers from that and seems to be doing well as well as all the others I know who are dealing with health issues.

And I light a candle for Donald Trump and the world in which we are living, praying we will get through this.

Then I light a candle for all the things I said I would light a candle about and have forgotten.

It is very comforting for me to do this.

One of the reasons I attend Christ Church is that I am getting older and at some point, in this getting older process, I won’t be here and I would like a community of people to mourn me.  Christ Church will.  In the last few years, I have become an integral part of that community.  My coffee hours after the 10:30 service are legendary as are the Easter brunches I have organized the last two years.

And I would like there to be a great good party on the deck of the cottage or, if that’s not possible, at the Red Dot.  I’m part of that community also.

It’s my hope it will be some long time before there will need to be a celebration but I am laying the ground work for that.  That, too, is hygge for me.

Sitting here in the cottage, I am grateful and that is so comforting, to be grateful.

Letter From Claverack June 1, 2017 And they wonder why…

June 1, 2017

Thunderstorms pummeled the Hudson Valley last night.  This morning is as sweet a morning as one might wish.

The sky is a color of blue for which I cannot find a word; sweet, clear, refreshed from the rain.  The sharp green of the trees outside my window almost glow in the sunlight cascading down in an almost magic morning.  It is not hard to imagine that across the creek woodland nymphs are gambling in delight.

A big mug of strong coffee is at my side and jazz is playing, upbeat and uplifting.

A letter has been fermenting in my mind the last few days, ever since a couple of my friends who are supporters of Donald Trump questioned me on why he has had such a vitriolic reception as President?

I found myself surprised by the question.

It surprised me they did not understand; didn’t see what I see and I need to remember we are all individuals who are interpreting current events in different ways.

We have a President who didn’t win the majority vote and is still the President of the country, an event that has happened twice in this century, brief as it has been, and that has made a lot of people angry, uncomfortable and questioning our Founding Fathers’ wisdom in setting up the Electoral College.

We have a President that doesn’t seem to know the truth.  We like our Presidents to at least sound like they’re telling the truth.

We don’t like them saying things that are verifiably not true, things that are conflations of their own imaginations.  People notice things like that. It does not breed respect.

His Inauguration speech depicted an America which inspired despair, not hope.  His picks for almost every office inspires deep concern for many people.  Scott Pruitt as head of the EPA? Rick Perry as Secretary of the Department of Energy, the department he couldn’t remember in a debate that he wanted eliminated.  Sort of a come down from people like the Ph.D.’s who were running it before.

NOTHING this President has done is very Presidential.

In his European trip, he may have handed the mantle of the leader of the Free World to Angela Merkel.

He is picking a trade fight with Germany but not addressing the real issues and potentially hurting workers in the South, where German car companies have been manufacturing.  People who elected him may be the victims of this fight.

If he repudiates the Paris Climate Accords, he will link us with Syria and Nicaragua as the only countries not agreeing and will be doing another thing that will cede leadership to China, which remains steadfast in its support.  And is capitalizing on it.  China’s Premier is in Europe right now, cozying up to Merkel.

If we are disrespectful, it is because this man has given us so little to respect – from my point of view and that is not the point of view of everyone. I acknowledge that.

My family was Republican.  The first President I remember is Dwight Eisenhower.  Wow.  Dwight Eisenhower then.  Donald Trump now.  Is it any wonder I shiver at night?

Weeks ago, I texted one of the smartest people I know, an Independent, who has voted both for Republicans and Democrats, not married to a party.  I asked him what he thought of Trump.  There was no response, until this weekend.

He said: I used to think Trump was just a jackass but he seems to be a jackass and an idiot.

Our White House is occupied by someone who seems a jackass and an idiot who is being unfaithful to the people who elected him.  Everything he has proposed is supportive of his class and destructive to the people who elected him.

He is bringing the Billionaire’s Boy’s Club to the White House.  He’s not cleaning out the swamp. He’s enlarging it.

Bucking a long-standing tradition, he hasn’t, still, released his tax returns.  His aides have “forgotten” meetings with Russian officials during the campaign.  His sons have contradicted him in terms of his financial relations with Russia.  There are all kinds of dangling Russian connections that are, at best, unseemly, and, at worst, criminal and maybe treasonous.

So, I shiver at night and tremble when he speaks.

This is all, of course, my humble opinion.

And thus, I do things that are very hygge to comfort my soul, make me feel at one with the universe, and give me a smile, such as enjoying and savoring the view out my window, like enjoying this cat on display on Main Street in Catskill, where I was doing some errands yesterday.

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Or enjoying this reflection by Thomas Pesquet, a French astronaut, as he readies himself for his return to earth.  See it here.