It is a Damon Runyon story, but without the character voices

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The cover of the audiobook (photo and design by Jim Moore)

A labor of love and a tribute to Senate staff

A 27-hour audiobook that took more than 100 hours to produce

I just completed the narration of the The narration was an opportunity for me to explore some of the most troubling aspects of the current administration’s direct and indirect connections with truly malign actors here in the U.S. and overseas — mostly in Russia and Ukraine.

The long and winding road

Patient readers and audiobook listeners will travel the report’s long and twisting road that is paved with obvious and not so obvious evidence, cross-wired and sometimes confounding testimony, clandestine operations, botched plans, subterfuges, oligarchs’ legerdemain, unbridled greed, a suspect dossier, and general ineptitude on the part of many players on both sides. …


The disruptions, fears, and uncertainties of today’s politics are rooted in the nation’s past behaviors — those which were hateful, those which were helpful

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Morning along the levee South of Baton Rouge (photo by Jim Moore)

Religion, action, and reaction

On this day in 1963 I was a 14-year-old high school freshman attending Jesuit High School, in Shreveport, Louisiana. The news of John Kennedy’s assassination hit me in three ways:

The Jesuits reached for faith

First, the Catholic leadership of the school were devastated and their sadness swept through the halls and into the classrooms like a flash flood of sorrow, fear, shock, prayers, and disbelief. The usually rock-steady voice of the school’s president wavered and broke as he announced the news. I cried not just because I was sad, but because so many adults were sad. …


The presidential transition thus far is a drama straight from the Bard’s darkest tales

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Storm Clouds Moving In (painting by Jim Moore)

I think it’s fair to say that most Americans — and, frankly, most citizens of the world with access to some degree of news and information — are glad the 2020 election is, for the most part, all over but for the sore-loser shouting “Stolen election!”

Personal experience

As I write this, on the Monday after the election was called for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris, the Trump administration (really, mostly Trump himself) is doing its best to throw a wrench in the works and prevent the Biden transition team from getting underway with what has, until now, been a very orderly changing of the guard. …


A visit to Australia in November 2016, turned sad on election night

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CNN on a television screen in a bar in Canberra, Australia, November 9 (AUS) 2016 (photo by author)

Author’s note:

Wednesday, November 9, 2016 (still Tuesday, November 8 in the U.S.)

Bungendore, New South Wales, Australia

It’s 6 a.m. on a rainy, dull blue-gray dawn in Bungendore, Australia. The cockatoos and magpies are squawking and muttering in the trees. Small mobs of kangaroos patrol the damp brush on the outskirts of town. Across this bedroom community 30 miles east of Canberra, Australians are beginning their routines for the day. After brekkie (breakfast), a quick check on the weather (showers, temps in the teens centigrade — about 60-degrees Fahrenheit), and a scramble to get their kids off to school, commuters climb into their cars (left-hand drive) and head into the capital city. …


Sometimes you just have to take the fork in the road

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Shutterstock

My advice? Have an opinion

From nightmare to inquiry

I was lying awake in bed at 4 a.m., unable to sleep, irrationally contemplating the dawning of yet another day of more national uncertainty. The snatches of sleep I had been able to grab were torn with nightmares. In one, I was in a small boat in a splintered jade sea, and it was taking on water amidst fearsome waves of doubt with their frothy, ragged crests and black abyssal troughs on all sides. …


Civic responsibility starts with the truth, no matter how inconvenient

Donald Trump as Pinocchio leading people over a cliff with his false assurances
Donald Trump as Pinocchio leading people over a cliff with his false assurances
Illustration by Jim Moore and Shutterstock

The bottom line

There will be no glory in saying, “I worked in Donald Trump’s administration.” There will be no civic adulation, no honorary degrees awarded, no thanks from a grateful nation, no corner offices earned through the honest labors of one’s work or as a reward for making the world a better place. No. …


An already imperiled nation is on Trump’s chopping block

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Master of the Universe (Illustration by William Rotsaert)

Trump wins

With the death of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the final veil between president Trump and his adoring public has been lifted; he no longer needs to even pretend to woo them as their savior.

Now he gets what he’s always wanted

Before Justice Ginsburg’s body has cooled and the celebrations of her vast contributions begin, Trump turned away from her dying plea, and readied his troops for the fight he has longed to wage — . …


The November election is our chance to save ourselves from ourselves

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Photo Illustration by Jim Moore (Shutterstock flag)

How others see us

We are no longer a picture of health (if we ever were)

Writing in the (July 11, 2020), Crispin Hull, former editor of the , put a jarring coda to the herky-jerky, disjointed Ivesian symphony that has become the sad opus of American politics. In Hull’s view,

Hull’s critique of the state of American politics and the general decline in comity and reason initially struck me as a rather harsh and imperfect painting of our nation’s condition. …


Remembering a trip to Aspen with my Dad, thanks to his receipts

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My father’s receipt for ski rentals in Boulder, CO, for our Aspen trip in 1969

An unearthed paper trail tells a tale

A father-son trip more memorable to him than I knew

Parents can find ways to surprise you even when they are gone…have been gone for many years.

Case in point: In the process of going through family records and various documents to support a book I’m writing, I found a small stack of receipts and lined note paper with accounting notes that my father organized after a trip he and I took to Aspen, Colorado, in late March into early April 1969. …


Comforting the afflicted is a life’s work

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Shutterstock

Introducing Mr. Martin Dooley

In October, 1893, Chicago Evening Post journalist and humorist Finley Peter Dunne created a newspaper column written by the fictitious Irish bartender, Mr. Martin Dooley, a Dunne avatar whose jabs and barbs, witticisms and knife-edged humor skewered the political elite, and discomfited the socially well-to-do.

I first began reading Mr. Dooley’s 750-word columns when I was a teenager in high school here in Virginia in the late 1960s. As a kid raised by a mother whose biting editorial lashings took deadly aim at local politicians she accused of malpractice when it came to county politics, budgets, road maintenance, health care facilities, and various restrictive land-use ordinances, I appreciated to no end Mr. …

About

Jim Moore

Journalist, former Capitol Hill staff (House and Senate), former Cabinet speechwriter, editor, photojournalist and bird photographer. Top Writer Quora 2016–2017

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