A royal affair

Meghan & Harry

Yes, I watched part of the royal bash at the Windsor Castle, but I have mixed feelings about the whole shebang.

It was very impressive and very romantic… and maybe a little bit over the top, especially when it came to Bishop Michael Curry’s exuberant address.

I don’t want to sound pessimistic, but any marriage (regardless of the protagonists) is always an iffy proposition. It is like a Broadway production, it could be a hit or a flop.

Of course, you wish the young couple well, but it has been estimated that between 40 and 50% of marriages end up in divorces. Regardless of who you are, your romance is never entirely foolproof.

The royals naturally live in a different world, but most of the difficulties that befall ordinary folks are also there for them. Money is probably not one of them, but infidelity could be. The biblical snake (carrying the forbidden fruit on his backpack) is always waiting in the grass.
Nobody is beyond temptation, neither a prince nor an actress.

Do you seriously expect me to be the first Prince of Wales in history not to have a mistress? Prince Charles

And for royals, there might also be the fear of being upstaged. It is difficult for a prince who has always been the center of attention, to play second fiddle to a glamorous wife. And it could be very tempting for a seasoned actress to upstage the man she nabbed. I believe that Meghan (the “older”, more experienced woman) is capable of wrapping Harry around her little finger and make him cry “uncle” anytime she wants.

I understand that Prince Albert, Prince Philip, and Prince Charles all resented the popularity of their spouses.

Yes, I might sound a little miffed, but the invitation starting with

The Lord Chamberlain is commanded by
The Queen to invite…

never reached me. It was undoubtedly lost in the mail, but I am mad at Meghan for not sending the invitation in a more secure manner.

Let it be known

In her last text message though, the Duchess of Sussex apologized profusely and promised to play a round of pétanque with us whenever she can shake off Harry.

Alain

Ignorance

“It takes considerable knowledge just to realize the extent of your own ignorance.” ~Thomas Sowell

Like millions of people, I am immensely ignorant. But at least, I am aware of it… and it keeps my ego in check.

Human Knowledge is currently so incredibly vast that it is mind-boggling. When you think of it, it is a little bit like trying to visualize the universe. It is so huge that it is almost impossible to grasp its extent.

In the 15th century, Leonardo da Vinci (1452 –1519) could have claimed to be a polymath, a “Universal Man”, but today it would be an impossible assertion.
In the 21st century, no one can pretend to be well informed about everything. You might be a nuclear scientist, but you probably could not to fix a car or bake a soufflé dish.

Being Ignorant does not necessarily mean being uneducated. It can mean lacking information about a certain subject. For instance, many learned senior citizens are still afraid or disinclined to use a computer. This does not make them ignoramuses.

“The highest form of ignorance is when you reject something you don’t know anything about.” Wayne Dyer

Stem Cell therapy (a life-saving procedure) is a good example of such a predicament. Without knowing much about this subject, some people are adamantly opposed to it. If you are ignorant about a certain procedure, learn about it before fighting it and preventing others from benefiting from it.

Ignorance often goes hand in hand with intolerance. European Jews were persecuted for centuries because of the ridiculous (and widely debunked) Blood libel accusation.

“Blood libel is an accusation that Jews kidnapped and murdered the children of Christians in order to use their blood as part of their religious rituals during Jewish holidays.”

It also took a long time and some memorable publicity stunts for Antoine-Augustin Parmentier to entice starving French people to eat potatoes

In 1748 the French Parliament had actually forbidden the cultivation of the potato (on the grounds that it was thought to cause leprosy among other things), and this law remained on the books in Parmentier’s time, until 1772.”

Ignorance

is not a “maladie honteuse”. It is a disease that is highly treatable. If you are open-minded and willing to apply yourself, it is a condition that can be easily cured.

Alain

PS: Only ignorant stooges will believe that our club has been hacked by Russian operatives.

Lobbyists

Despite repeated promises to drain the “Swamp”, the Washington Black Lagoon is still alive and brimming with swamp creatures. They are known as lobbyists and there are an estimated 15,000 such critters in Washington. This should concern you.

But what is exactly a lobbyist?

California defines a lobbyist as follows:

“Lobbyist” means either of the following: (1) Any individual who receives $2,000 or more in economic consideration in a calendar month, other than reimbursement for reasonable travel expenses, or whose principal duties as an employee are, to communicate directly or through his or her agents with any elective state official, agency official, or legislative official for the purpose of influencing legislative or administrative action.”

So a lobbyist is a person who tries to control legislation on behalf of a special interest. And he/she will do this, regardless if his activity is harmful to the environment or to the public good.

And how much does a lobbyist get for such services?

“The median annual Lobbyist salary is $109,082, as of March 29, 2018, with a range usually between $87,902-$150,417, however, this can vary widely depending on a variety of factors.”

But then, what is a mercenary? A person primarily concerned with material rewards at the expense of ethics.

I am a rather unsophisticated person and I struggle to understand the difference between a lobbyist and a mercenary. Maybe “lobbyist” sounds more palatable than mercenary, just as “escort” sounds more acceptable than prostitute.

I wonder who has more scruples? A lobbyist or a mercenary? Or none of them…

Regardless, both groups are paid for services rendered without regards for the morality of their actions. Why should this concern you? Because lobbyists, (particularly Big Pharma), have too much influence over legislators.

If a disease won’t kill you, the unreasonable prices of drugs certainly will.

You ought to know that the present administration opted “not to have the federal government directly negotiate lower drug prices for Medicare. And chose not to allow American consumers to import low-cost medicines from abroad.”

❤ ❤

When you are in the voting booth, watch out for special interests and run the known scoundrels out of office.

Alain