Charlie's Blog: Thank You

7.04.2016

Thank You


If the sun refused to shine, I would still be loving you
When mountains crumble to the sea, there will still be you and me
LED ZEPPELIN, Thank You

This song was written by Robert Plant for his wife Maureen. They were married in 1968. They divorced in 1982. The sun still shines. The mountains have yet to crumble into the sea.

A favorite joke of mine goes that a boy pledged to a girl that he would climb any mountain and cross any sea to be with her, and he would be over on Tuesday night if it wasn't raining. I share the joke to give a bit of sobriety to the issue of love. It seems that love is full of so much promise and always short on delivery.

I think it would be hard to maintain a relationship with a wife if your job is being a rock star and banging out groupies each night. Love rarely survives such self indulgence. I have to laugh when people like this honestly believe they will be anything other than slimy cheaters, or that they can be something other than what they are. One of the most ridiculous stories I have ever heard was how one husband's fidelity did not last a single day as he was banging out one of the bridesmaids in a cloakroom during the reception at his own wedding.

Pope Francis has made another disgrace of himself with remarks about how many marriages conducted in Catholic churches aren't valid while cohabiting unmarried couples have a great deal of validity. If there was a point to that confused jumble of scandalous words, it has largely been lost on the rest of us. What I can agree on is that precious few people who marry actually follow through and deliver on their vows. The Holy Father had a very teachable moment in recognizing that sad truth, but he chose to blow it.

I know I am nutty, but I believe that you should be faithful to your spouse until you die. If you can't do that, you should not get married. Being a fornicator is one thing. Being a liar and an adulterer is worse.

People ask me if I believe in love since getting married. The answer is no. I don't believe in love. I just believe in my wife. Love is only as good as the people sharing it. But love has no magic power of its own. Love by itself doesn't make you chaste or virtuous. People who lack virtue can never have true love.

From what I've read, Led Zeppelin never performs this song live. It's a shame because it is one of their best songs. But I would hate to sing those lyrics each night knowing they were a sham and a lie. I can't really blame Plant for that. Poor guy.

I love being married. It is the best thing that has ever happened to me. Getting married has saved me from a lot of bad things especially atheism. My wife says that my blog sounds as negative now as it did back in the old days, but this is not intentional. The facts of life now are still the same as when I was an atheist except now my life has a purpose and a meaning that I didn't have back then. Back then, I suffered for nothing. Today, I suffer for something. But I still suffer. Suffering doesn't end until we get to Heaven.

I love this quotation from Arthur Schopenhauer:
What disturbs and depresses young people is the hunt for happiness on the firm assumption that it must be met with in life. From this arises constantly deluded hope and so also dissatisfaction. Deceptive images of a vague happiness hover before us in our dreams, and we search in vain for their original. Much would have been gained if, through timely advice and instruction, young people could have had eradicated from their minds the erroneous notion that the world has a great deal to offer them.
Schopenhauer did not believe in God and was a total pessimist. Yet, his insights in this quotation are thoroughly Christian. Everyone seeks happiness, yet life seems unable to deliver when it comes to happiness. Happiness can only be found in God, and this happiness is not complete until we behold the Beatific Vision in Heaven. In the meantime, life is a valley of tears.

With people, no relationship can be healthy unless God is in that relationship. This is true of parents and children, brothers and sisters, and husbands and wives. The problem with people is that they can be vicious to each other, and they cause each other so much grief. I get along with my wife precisely because of the faith that we share. And I would rather die than ever break her heart the way so many men casually do to their wives.


In other things, I have been reflecting on how awesome the eighties were. I was listening to some music from that time, and you can't help but notice a certain optimistic spirit in all of the music. That spirit was not there in music from the seventies. The best you could find was a certain fun quality to disco. But the seventies were a depressing time for people especially because of the economy. When Reagan and Thatcher came along, you could tell the mood had lightened. It is amazing to consider when you keep in mind that people lived under threat of nuclear annihilation. We could credit the optimism to an improved economy, but the nineties were actually better economically than the eighties. The nineties should have been more optimistic, but they weren't. You can see this in the music of the time especially the ultimate anthem of the nineties, "Smells Like Teen Spirit."


Why were the eighties optimistic while the nineties became a black hole of nihilism? You would think the fall of the Berlin Wall would have made that decade over the moon ecstatic. But it didn't. The simple fact is that the eighties ended in 1992 when Bill Clinton got elected. When that scoundrel came into the Oval Office, America lost itself, and it never recovered. The nineties never ended. George W. Bush was little better than Clinton, and Obama has been much worse.

Donald Trump seems to know all of this. When he makes the promise to "Make America Great Again," he means the America that existed in the eighties under Ronald Reagan. Personally, those were some of the worst years of my life as I hated high school. But off the school grounds, I have to admit that things were pretty cool in the country. I was old enough to remember Carter and the seventies, and no one was happy then. I remember my dad being happy to see Reagan come into office.

I think the country is in a similar spot as it was when it rejected Carter in favor of Reagan. Reagan won the election with a simple question. Are you better off now than you were four years ago? Carter couldn't deal with that because everyone knew they were worse off. Trump can ask the same question. Are you better off now than you were eight years ago? For most people, the answer is no.

This country is utterly stupid, so it would not surprise me if they voted in Hillary Clinton. Even with a liberal media whitewashing her as much as possible, people know that Hillary is crooked and evil. Polls have her leading, but I suspect they are skewed because the silent majority really is silent. The only question is whether it is still a majority.

I think if Trump won there would be a return of the spirit this country had during the eighties. Trump was a product of the eighties. That was the first time I had ever heard of the guy, and I never forgot him. I am amazed that he is still around even today. Like Reagan, Trump is not beloved by the Republican Party. But also like Reagan, Trump has tapped into a vein of deep dissatisfaction. The simple fact is that the liberals have made a mockery out of this country. Trump would end that mockery. ISIS will be defeated. The Pentagon would cease and desist with plans for transgender troops. Political correctness would end. And maybe the economy would get better.

For me, I would like to see a light at the end of the tunnel. Hillary is the darkness. Her victory would be at least four years of miserable hell. But if Trump won, it would be like seeing daylight. I miss the eighties. I would love to go back there. Trump isn't Reagan and probably never will be. But he knew Reagan was a good president, so I'll take a guy who at least wants to be like a good president. And I'd like to experience some optimism and good feelings again like I did then. I want morning in America. I want so see people smile again.