Author Archives: Ken Carman

Inspection- Of Justice Beyond the Grave

by Ken Carman

 I was in Clarksville, Tennessee, at a club meeting, when I looked at the TV: Antonin Scalia Dead.
 It hit me suddenly: probably because my wife and I have been dealing with some life, possible death, issues recently. Isn’t odd how death surrounds us, enfolds us, every day? People die about as much as they’re born, but we celebrate one, sweep the other under ceremony and ritual. Unless it’s someone like Scalia. Then it often becomes a national case of over the top angst.
 I hate it. I worked long enough in cemeteries as a young man to feel most of this is phony, artificial and outright weird. A lot of what we do seems to have nothing to do with Christianity, or any other faith. Pumping up a body with formaldehyde? Really? God can walk again as Jesus, build Adam out of dust and dirt, but needs chemical help? Is he in league with big chemical, or on the board of Pfizer?
 Those who know my politics can quickly guess that I am not a Scalia fan. Even if I agreed with his stances more, his acerbic, his obvious partisan skew as a justice was exactly what we didn’t need. That’s no matter what side any Supreme is on. But he didn’t deserve this.
 I must address recent comments about his replacement. One wonders, if roles were reversed and we had a President Romney, McCain, or W. back, would they be making noise now about waiting for the next president? I think we all know the answer to that.
 It’s obvious Congress will do what they can to step in the way of any new justice, especially any not to their liking: read that as anyone who isn’t, basically, them. To be honest, even if Barack would suggrest someone like them, I think they would obstruct. This goes way back to the Caucus Room Conspiracy.
#8194;Barack owes these folks nothing, and also has a duty. Please do it as well as possible, Mr. President. I hope you choose wisely, and if there is an ounce of honesty left these pols will respect his right to choose. They don’t have to agree. They just need to cut out the panty twisting and all the demands that the president wait until they might have a president to their own liking.
 That’s not how the system works. Never has.
 I’m sure there will be pomp, circumstance, and the pols will play “nice” during that… while pundits do their usual foam at the mouth routines, some no matter what side they’re on.
 Frankly I find all this an insult to the living, and the dead. But I’ve felt that long before all this. I’ve felt it at least since they turned JFK’s assassination into a week long mourn-fest, and when my mother died.
 We don’t do death well, in my opinion. Unfortunately I doubt, if he could speak, Scalia would care about any of this: especially the hole left in the court. In my opinion his whole concept of the Constitution was as his own personal toilet paper he could use to wipe his ever abundant partisanship up with, and then to throw at everyone who dared to disagree with him. And his concept of how his death should be treated was probably about as self serving.

                                                    -30-
Inspection is a column that has been written by Ken Carman for over 40 years. Inspection is dedicated to looking at odd angles, under all the rocks, and into the unseen cracks and crevasses, that constitute the issues and philosophical constructs of our day: places few think, or even dare, to venture.
©Copyright 2016
Ken Carman and Cartenual Productions
all right reserved

Inspection- But What About After the Silly Season is Over?

by Ken Carman

  Really?
 One won caucus, one lost primary, and some are already announcing the “death” of the Clinton “dynasty?” BTW, what “dynasty?” One president elected twice doth not a “dynasty” make.
 Really?
 All we have to do is toss the magical word “communist” at Bernie so Alan Rickman can come… Slithern… back from the grave and Bernie will be helpless?
 Sigh.
 I’m rapidly growing so damn tired of how shallow the silly season has become. Read more

Inspection- Roller Coaster

There’s a lot of personal information in here, but most of it leads to a point that I think will help others, and bring new perspective to politics, that bully boss, or fellow employee who can’t stand you… and life in general.

by Ken Carman

 Why is it we recognize certain truths only when the journey is so much closer to the end than it is to the beginning? I was so sensitive as a youth the moment things went south I just “knew” everyone thought me the fool, that something had to be seriously wrong with me and nothing I could ever do would change that.
 Poor self image feeds into itself, like cancer it can be terminal when not cared for. Depression is its own fertilizer and could be considered the only perpetual motion machine ever, if there was any actual motion, or machine.
 And there are always those all too willing to help; family members, older brothers or sisters, playground bullies.
 I should have recognized this when a kid I didn’t know picked a fight with me in elementary school and one of the members of the crowd I’d never met cheered him on with, “Kill him! I hate that kid!”
 I put my fists down and said, “This is stupid,” and just walked away. Read more

Inspection- How Hitler Could Come to America

by Ken Carman

One of the most frequently asked question asked is, “How come Hitler?” Looking back, from our perspective, it does seem a puzzle. Some of that is answered by as anti-Semitic as Germany was, it’s not like he ran on a, “let’s exterminate the Jews,” platform from the start. Another answer refers to how Nazism’s excesses, or the public’s awareness of them, came on slowly, the old “first they came for the…” and slow to boil frog analogies seem quite fitting here. Add to this how inspiring, upbeat, Hitler was. He did lift Germany up economically. He did fix infrastructure, build new roads, get big industry back on what eventually became fascistic feet. Who was impressed? Well. the British prime minister at the time was so impressed, when he visited, he proudly took away a signed portrait. Underneath all this the frog, of course, was getting hotter and hotter.
 Unmentioned, however, is one of the most likely, most powerful, and very scary, explanations. Looked at uncritically, yet logically, it simply made sense economically. I’ll leave the more current comparisons; then the finger pointing, the inevitable framing, to my readers. Read more

Inspection- A Brief History

Over the years I’ve done a few “brief” introductions to this column, but more outros once I moved away, or early on in the history of Inspection when I was about to graduate and it was the end of the school year. What you will read here is a rewrite of a 2005 edition I wrote when the website I was on went dark and the owner of another site told me he wanted my weekly Inspection column on his site.

  So I thought maybe the best way to start my regular editions in 2016, since 2005 was the last overview, was to reintroduce my column. Why? Because Inspection has spread far beyond its once limited net home in 2005.

by Ken Carman

Inspection is a column I have been writing, off and on, for over 40 years. The first edition appeared in The Marplot Stamp, a publication of Mohawk Valley Community College. The year was 1972. Still a conservative at the time I had an idea for a more local: Utica, NY, version of William F. Buckley’s column On the Right. Since then it has appeared in various publications including, but not limited to, publications at Plattsburgh State, Belmont University, an occasional newspaper. Usually it would be a special one off edition: sometimes labeled Inspection, sometimes not. I wrote Inspection under my own father’s column name several times: From the Hermitage, when he was in a burn unit in Syracuse. I kept my own format, other than the name.
  What would I have missed if I hadn’t boldly gone where this Ken Carman had never gone before? Read more

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