An Unexpected Climate Discussion

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Annabel Park Bob Scheuplein David Kent

Years ago, when I first joined a social media site for writers called Gather, I participated in many a discussion on climate change. That site is long gone and my time is mostly spent on Abraham Lincoln activities now. But last night I unexpectedly found myself participating in a discussion about climate on The Talk on Main St., a Facebook page run by independent filmmaker Annabel Park.

I had been interviewed a few times before by Annabel, once specifically about Abraham Lincoln and what he might do in today’s society, which sadly, isn’t that far off from what he had to save the United States from over 150 years ago. The other two times, I joined Annabel and Bob Scheuplein for discussions more politically oriented. Mostly we discussed how to move forward.

Which gets me to last night. Annabel is now a co-founder of DIY Green, a non-profit organization whose goal is to “create media and organize webinars to encourage people to take action on climate change.” Scheduled to appear was none other than Bob, a fellow scientist and former colleague – we had worked many years together as scientists in a regulatory law firm. Because of COVID, I hadn’t seen Bob (or Annabel) for a couple of years, so decided to sign up for the program so I could listen to Bob discuss climate change books. Or so I thought.

When I arrived I was surprised to find myself joining Bob for the interview. For the next hour the three of us discussed not only books about climate change, but a far-reaching exploration into how we can better communicate the direness of taking action to a populace that has so often been lied to about science. Keep in mind we still have people refusing to be vaccinated for COVID because “freedoms,” notwithstanding that every single COVID-unvaccinated people has been vaccinated a half-dozen to a dozen times already in their lifetimes, not even counting flu shots. Vaccinations are how we deal with disease without having to kill off massive numbers of people needlessly, and yet there are people willing to risk their own lives and the lives of people they love, solely because they don’t want to admit been conned by their chosen political party.

And so we discussed options. At one point, we even got to talk about how Lincoln had been an early proponent of wind energy. Given his emphasis on infrastructure and internal improvements, no doubt today he would be pushing for the infrastructure bills currently being debated in Congress. To clarify that last point, that Democrats are debating in Congress; the Republican party refuses to even participate in governing, as has been the case for decades. In fact, as part of the discussion last night I related how this is the conservative strategy for the entirety of our national history – keep the government from working, then convince their voters that it isn’t working as an excuse to further erode the rights of those people most loudly screaming that their rights are being infringed. This is the Great Con, which I’ll probably do a post on when I can find the time. That said, the discussion wasn’t overly political. Mostly it focused on public communication.

As energizing as last night’s discussion was – and I always am inspired by Annabel’s passion for change – it’s been an exhausting week. On Monday I had more laid back participation in a discussion on how the North won the Civil War, put on by Christian McWhirter, the Illinois State Historian. On Tuesday afternoon I presented the second of my two sessions (“Lincoln as Commander-in-Chief) in a four-session course on Abraham Lincoln that a few of us are teaching for Encore Learning, which helps retirees continue their education. That night, as President of the Lincoln Group of DC, I hosted the business meeting and moderated questions for our guest speaker, the eminent Lincoln scholar Ronald C. White.

A quick note about the Lincoln Group meeting: Ron White was talking about his new book, Lincoln in Private, which delves into several of the 111 extant private notes Lincoln wrote to himself. Mostly these were “notes to self” to help him think through various issues (e.g., what is democracy; what to do about slavery; equality for African Americans; meditation on the divine will). Only in one or two cases was language used in the notes ever carried over into an actual letter or speech. It is in this area that I find one connection to Lincoln. I too am constantly writing notes to myself. Fragments that Lincoln would put in his hat or store in his desk for future use have morphed into emails to myself, most of which never get read again. For both Lincoln and me, the act of writing it down, no matter how fragmentary, helps stick the thought in our minds. Sometimes those thoughts leak out onto paper.

Today I managed to get a break from scheduled events, hence the time to write this ramble. Tomorrow I’m back on duty as the Treasurer of another Lincoln organization, the Abraham Lincoln Institute, which holds its twice-yearly board meeting. Now that I think of it, today isn’t so free; I need to read the next of about 39 books that are under consideration for ALI’s annual book award. I sit on the review committee for the third year running. Even there, my role might expand next year. Next week I have another meeting with the National Park Service as we plan for the centennial of the Lincoln Memorial in 2022. I had a call with a military group last night to discuss collaboration on an event next February. Next month I’ll be attending the Lincoln Forum, a week-long conference in Gettysburg, PA. I also write for the Lincolnian.org blog as well as my own author website and here on Hot White Snow. Somewhere in my schedule I’m writing a book I plan to self-publish around the end of the year, plus I’m researching another I hope to propose to a publisher early in 2022. Then there is the editing and market planning for the book already in a publisher’s hands.

Last night’s unexpected foray back into climate science and community communication (which you can watch here) is likely to stay on the back burner, or maybe the middle burner, for the time being. I’m still a scientist at heart even though most of my time these days is spent on Lincoln. Next year will see those two world’s meld together as my book on the importance of science and technology in Lincoln’s life is scheduled for release in September. I may find myself speaking to science organizations as well as Lincoln groups. Should be a fun (exhausting) year.

David J. Kent is an avid traveler, scientist, and Abraham Lincoln historian. He is the author of Lincoln: The Man Who Saved AmericaTesla: The Wizard of Electricity and Edison: The Inventor of the Modern World as well as two specialty e-books: Nikola Tesla: Renewable Energy Ahead of Its Time and Abraham Lincoln and Nikola Tesla: Connected by Fate.

Check out my Goodreads author page. While you’re at it, “Like” my Facebook author page for more updates!

9/11 – 20 Years On

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As I write this, most Americans are remembering 9/11, the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Towers, the Pentagon, and an unknown target ending in a field in Pennsylvania. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this. But as Abraham Lincoln noted in another Pennsylvania field in 1863, “in a larger sense, we can not dedicate–we cannot consecrate–we cannot hallow–this ground. The brave men [and women], living and dead, who struggled here [and there], have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract.”

At some point after that day, in the shadow of the Pentagon, I wrote “Reliving 9/11,” posting it on various media long since gone, reposting for some years hence. Not included in that piece were additional experiences, including that of a coworker, a first-responder at the Pentagon attack who suffered PTSD for years as a result. In that piece I ended by noting that “the nightmares are now gone.” It turns out that wasn’t completely true. A variation returned in recent years, most likely because my subconscious mind saw patterns that my conscious mind suppressed.

I won’t rehash that post, but feel free to read it to get a sense of where I stood at the time.

Many seem to recall the unity we saw as a nation immediately after 9/11. We are one nation, someone said, brought together by tragedy to forge a common path forward.

That isn’t really true, of course. Muslim Americans were targeted viciously. Sikh Americans too, who white Americans mistook for Muslim because we couldn’t distinguish a turban from a keffiyeh. Then there were disagreements over the rapid path to war. Probably most of us saw the necessity to go after the perpetrators of the attacks, mostly Saudis but based in Afghanistan at the time. A much smaller percentage saw the move into Iraq as necessary; many thought it illegal and based on pretense as a means to vindicate a supposed bounty on a father’s head (Bush) and line the pockets of others by getting at the rich Iraqi oil supply (Cheney). In any case, shifting the focus to Iraq created a lose-lose situation in Afghanistan, where a “Desert Storm” type of operation would have offered a greater chance of freedom enduring than the 20-year nightmare we’ve only a month ago extracted ourselves.

9/11 wasn’t a one-off. A week before the 1993 truck bomb in the basement of the World Trade Center, I had taken a PATH train from New Jersey into that station on a work assignment. On July 6, 2005, I arrived in Edinburgh, Scotland to work at my company’s office there over the summer. The next day was the terrorist attack in the London Tube and bus.

Within a week after 9/11 in 2001, the anthrax terrorist attacks began. Envelopes of anthrax spores were mailed to several media outlets and at least two Senators. Five people died and seventeen were injured. Notes with some of the mailings suggested Muslims were to blame, heightening the post-9/11 anti-Muslim fervor, but the government investigation led to a biodefense scientist at Fort Detrick in Maryland, who committed suicide when investigators were closing in.

A year later, in October 2002, the domestic terrorism got even closer. Two men began a three week campaign that became known as the Beltway Sniper Attacks. Using a high powered rifle and a car modified to allow one sniper to shoot from the trunk compartment, they shot and killed ten people and critically wounded three others. All the randomly chosen victims were doing mundane things like sitting outside a store, pumping gas, or walking. One victim was carrying bags from Home Depot back to their car; the very store I had planned to go to that day (at the last minute, I chose to go to a different, newly opened, Home Depot in the other direction). It was a place I knew well, often going there or the dim sum restaurant within yards of where the person was shot. For weeks I tucked myself into as small a space as possible whenever I filled my gas tank. People walked erratically on the sidewalk to make themselves a more difficult target. We all opened our mail more carefully.

Looking back on it, there’s a certain amount of PTSD that many Americans undoubtedly felt at that time. My coworker didn’t even try to suppress her annual grief on each 9/11 anniversary. For many years I drove past the Pentagon on my daily commute, noticing the transformation – they had literally moved the road to loop further away from the building. Previously it had passed close enough to lob whatever one wanted to lob at the walls of our primary military office. On the day after 9/11, as I drove within a block of the White House on my way to the office, the streets were eerily empty when they should have been busy, many people opting to take time off, still in shock. While office workers were missing, gained were armed soldiers and armored jeeps bearing machine guns and other weapons, parked strategically on street corners that a day before had vendor wagons selling pop tarts and Pepsis.

Now 20 years on, we still see a large group of people attacking the “others.” Those others include continuing bigotry against Muslims, but also one party’s embrace of the most heinous members of our society. Nazis, KKK, white supremacists, anti-Semites, anti-gay, anti-women, anti-democracy, anti-American attitudes have grown, not decreased. The ones wrapping themselves most tightly in the flag (American and Confederate) and papering themselves with their version of a bible that bigots and a savior who hates everyone and everything that he previously protected are the ones most egregiously lying to further the power of the few at the expense of the many.

The lesson we should have learned from 9/11 is that we are all in this together. There are no “others.” We ARE all the others. People seek to come to this country because it presumes to offer opportunity. In reality, it promotes those who already have and despises those who come here to make a better life. As we’ve also just passed our annual observance of Labor Day, we’ve somehow reached a place where workers who are disdained and exploited vote for those who are disdaining and exploiting them. As the saying goes, the trees kept voting for the axe because the axe convinced the trees that they were more like the axe because the axe’s handle was made of wood. Such is the power of caste when you have a group of powerful people who have no qualms of using deception and dishonesty and outright lies to manipulate the base fears of a dominant majority against a powerless minority.

We can be better. We must be better. I worry that we will choose not to be better. As so often happens, the words of Abraham Lincoln spring to mind, so I’ll end this post with the end of his annual message to Congress from December 1862:

We can succeed only by concert. It is not “can any of us imagine better?” but, “can we all do better?” The dogmas of the quiet past, are inadequate to the stormy present. The occasion is piled high with difficulty, and we must rise — with the occasion. As our case is new, so we must think anew, and act anew. We must disenthrall ourselves, and then we shall save our country.

Fellow-citizens, we cannot escape history. We of this Congress and this administration, will be remembered in spite of ourselves. No personal significance, or insignificance, can spare one or another of us. The fiery trial through which we pass, will light us down, in honor or dishonor, to the latest generation. We say we are for the Union. The world will not forget that we say this. We know how to save the Union. The world knows we do know how to save it. We — even we here — hold the power, and bear the responsibility. In giving freedom to the slave, we assure freedom to the free — honorable alike in what we give, and what we preserve. We shall nobly save, or meanly lose, the last best hope of earth. Other means may succeed; this could not fail. The way is plain, peaceful, generous, just — a way which, if followed, the world will forever applaud, and God must forever bless.

Vaccination is Safe, Free, and Necessary

In Missouri, people are sneaking in to get vaccinated for COVID.

Think about that. People are afraid that their own families might chastise them for taking action that could save their lives.

This is what we’ve come to.

Let’s start with the basics. Every excuse you’ve heard for not getting vaccinated for COVID isn’t true. The vaccine has, in fact, been adequately tested for use in this situation. The vaccine is, in fact, highly effective. It is, in fact, everyone’s business that we all get vaccinated.

Here are the facts:

Virtually everyone who is hospitalized and dies right now from COVID is unvaccinated.

Virtually everyone who is vaccinated is protected from severe COVID effects.

The three vaccines currently approved in the US are all effective.

By refusing vaccination, you are endangering not just yourself and family and everyone you come in contact with who is unvaccinated, you increase the chance that new variants will take hold. The longer we go without herd immunity, the greater the chance of variants that will no longer be adequately covered by vaccines.

Remember that herd immunity?

Of course you do. Last year, before we had the vaccines, many people claimed that they thought we should seek herd immunity. So they refused to wear masks. Some actually tried to get COVID. Some of them died.

Herd immunity is how we have dealt with deadly diseases for centuries. Deadly diseases like polio, measles, chicken pox, and others were all eradicated by herd immunity.

For every single one of them, that herd immunity was reached by the use of vaccines.

I’ll repeat that. Vaccines are how we reach herd immunity.

Here’s the thing. “Natural” herd immunity requires people to die. Vaccinations create herd immunity without people dying.

We have the benefit of living in an age where we can develop vaccines even for novel diseases like COVID, for which we have no natural immunity. We either let people reach herd immunity naturally by letting them become infected, or we get there using vaccines.

COVID has a mortality rate of something like 2% in the US.*

There are about 330 million Americans.

If we let everyone get infected “naturally,” that could mean the deaths of over 6 million Americans.

None of that is necessary. Zero. None.

We have a vaccine. We’ve used vaccines to protect ourselves from every other deadly disease. We’re required to have a set of vaccinations before we start kindergarten. Most colleges require standard vaccinations. We. Do. It. All. The. Time.

So there is no legitimate excuse for refusing to be vaccinated for COVID.

Getting vaccinated will allow us back to a “normal” life. This isn’t hard. Without the vaccine we may never return to “normal.” All because too many people refuse to get vaccinated.

So wear a disguise if you have to. But get vaccinated.

For you. For your loved ones. For the economy.

It’s the natural thing to do.

It’s free.

It’s easy.

It’s even patriotic.

Get vaccinated.

*Case fatality rate is more complicated than just saying 2%. If you’re into statistics, you can read more here.

David J. Kent is an avid traveler, scientist, and Abraham Lincoln historian. He is the author of Lincoln: The Man Who Saved AmericaTesla: The Wizard of Electricity and Edison: The Inventor of the Modern World as well as two specialty e-books: Nikola Tesla: Renewable Energy Ahead of Its Time and Abraham Lincoln and Nikola Tesla: Connected by Fate.

Check out my Goodreads author page. While you’re at it, “Like” my Facebook author page for more updates!

Why Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy is Sabotaging the January 6 Investigation

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Well, this was the Republican plan all along, wasn’t it? Of course it was. I knew it. Speaker Pelosi knew it. Kevin McCarthy knew it. Mitch McConnell knew it. Republicans don’t want an investigation in to the January 6 insurrection, the attack on the Capitol that resulted in several deaths, hundreds of injuries to Capitol police, and threats of execution against lawmakers. Republicans don’t want the public to know how it happened.

We all know how it happened, of course. Trump started planning an attack on the election in late spring when it was clear that his incompetent (lack of) response to the COVID pandemic and dishonest downplaying of the crisis was going to negatively affect his chances for reelection. Trump, along with Republican leaders, began lying to the public as cover for voter suppression tactics. After the election, Trump and Republican leaders stepped up their lying into the “Big Lie” of election fraud. No significant election fraud occurred. This has been confirmed by every state, including every single one of the Republican-run states. There was no election fraud.

McCarthy knows this. Scalise knows this. McConnell knows this. Even Trump knows this (or, at least he has been informed of this; it’s difficult to know exactly what Trump knows because he seems to be unable to separate his own lies from his mental delusions, which in itself tells you a lot about the Republican party). Every Republican knows they are lying. And yet they still do it. When the lies proved false in over 60 courts, every state, and every election district, Trump turned to inciting an attack on the Capitol, tweeting on December 20th: “Big protest in DC on January 6th. Be there, will be wild!” Trump’s staff, friends, and long-time associates then coordinated with the racist Proud Boys and other white supremacist groups to militarize the protest and lead them to the Capitol. Trump’s crony organizations led the attack. We all know this already. More than 500 people have been indicted, some have already pled guilty, and many use as their “defense” that they were there acting on the instructions of Trump.

We all know this.

Republicans blocked an independent investigation into the January 6th insurrection. They blocked it because they knew it would find many of them – Republican House and Senate members – guilty of inciting, and then aiding and abetting, the insurrection attack. Some House members in particular would likely be found guilty of treason for their actions helping the terrorists who attacked the Capitol. Others could be expelled from Congress for treason. At least two Republican Senators also could be expelled for their giving aid and incitement to terrorists. That is what the Republican party is trying to hide.

By blocking the independent investigation that would have found Republicans complicit, Republicans could then scream that any Select Committee of the House would be “partisan.” Republicans don’t want the facts; they know them already. They want to block the public from learning the whole extent of the facts. And they will do that by distracting the public with dishonest cries of partisanship.

We all knew that McCarthy would pick Jim Jordan to be one of the Republican representatives on the committee. Jordan has been implicated in covering up the Ohio State sex abuse scandal (in which he tried to pressure wrestlers to lie to protect himself and others). He is Trump’s prime mafia enforcer, attack dog, and surrogate in the House. McCarthy made a point to transfer Jordan to a committee he wasn’t on just so he could gum up the impeachment hearings with his dishonest and anti-American pit bull attacks on witnesses. We all knew McCarthy would put him on the committee. His job would be to make the hearings into a circus that would distract from the truth of Republican involvement in the Capitol attack. Why? On the day of the attack, Rep. Liz Cheney told Jordan: ‘Get away from me. You f—— did this.’” She knew. They all knew.

Speaker of the House Pelosi rejected Jordan and Republican Jim Banks from the committee because they were named specifically, and intentionally, to to disrupt, distract, and be deflect. (Banks is a less overtly obnoxious but equally dishonest protector of Trump corruption). McCarthy knew that Pelosi would have only two choices: Reject Jordan (after which McCarthy would scream partisanship) or accept Jordan (after which McCarthy would still scream partisanship while Jordan makes a mockery of the proceedings). In both cases, McCarthy and Jordan have succeeded in creating the talking point they were going to talk anyway. Never mind that McCarthy and Jordan are acting in the most dishonestly partisan way themselves, as is the case every time.

So for however long this Select Committee takes (the original independent investigation would have been time limited but a House select committee is not), McCarthy and Jordan and the other guilty Republicans who assisted the attackers will scream partisanship. They will never address the facts. Their goal is to keep the public from learning too many facts.

Because the facts prove McCarthy and many members of the Republican party to be complicit, and in some cases willfully aiding and abetting an insurrection against the United States. An insurrection that caused the deaths of several people, including Capitol police officers, and threatened the lives of hundreds of members of Congress, the Speaker, the party leaders, and the sitting Vice President, who were kept moments away from harm or death by the quick actions of House security and the secret service.

Speaker Pelosi notes that “we need a comprehensive investigation as to who organized this attack, who paid for it, how they nearly succeeded in overthrowing a presidential election, why they did it and how we must organize ourselves to prevent anything like it from ever happening again.”

Republicans don’t want that because they know they are guilty.

Pelosi rejected only the two overtly Trump attack dogs from the list of five McCarthy appointed. She accepted the other three – Representatives Davis, Armstrong, and Nehls (despite the latter having voted to overthrow the election results). She asked McCarthy to appoint two other members who could act more responsibly. Instead, McCarthy pulled the appointments of all the members.

That was his plan.

There is one Republican who remains on the committee – Rep. Liz Cheney. Cheney had been third in the Republican House hierarchy behind McCarthy and Scalise until she was thrown out of that position for refusing to lie about the election. This is who the Republican party is today – a far right conservative member isn’t suitable for leadership because she refuses to lie and refuses to support an attack on our very democracy. Cheney is certainly no friend of the Democrats or liberals or “partisans.” She was chosen by Pelosi as the only Republican that could be counted on to maintain some degree of integrity in the investigation.

Without an investigation, this attempted insurrection serves as a training exercise for the next one. Next time we can’t count on such an overtly dishonest but incompetent inciter of an insurrection. McCarthy and the Republican party have proven they will stop at nothing to keep power of, by, and for the few. Even if they have to destroy democracy to do it. They didn’t start this action on January 6, 2021. That was simple a battle. Republicans started attacking democracy decades ago, and they will continue to attack democracy unless there are enough honest Republicans, honest conservatives, and honest individuals willing to stand up to the cult takeover.

The Republican party must be held accountable.

David J. Kent is an avid traveler, scientist, and Abraham Lincoln historian. He is the author of Lincoln: The Man Who Saved AmericaTesla: The Wizard of Electricity and Edison: The Inventor of the Modern World as well as two specialty e-books: Nikola Tesla: Renewable Energy Ahead of Its Time and Abraham Lincoln and Nikola Tesla: Connected by Fate.

Check out my Goodreads author page. While you’re at it, “Like” my Facebook author page for more updates!

Reaching a Major Milestone

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This month I reached a major milestone in my career…and I almost missed it.

Last month I mentioned that I was finishing up my book manuscript. I did, in fact, submit it to the publisher near the end of June. I’m now anxiously waiting for them to review it in hopes they find no catastrophic structural problems (I’m fine with the copywriter splattering it with red ink if it makes my writing flow better). Likely I’ll hear back later this month. After hitting the send button I took some time off to decompress, and also to visit my family for the first time in a year. Everyone I encountered (which was probably far more than I had encountered for the last year) had been vaccinated. [Note: If you haven’t been vaccinated, know that 99% of deaths due to COVID now are in people who refuse to get vaccinated.]

But that isn’t the milestone I’m talking about.

With the calendar turning the page from June to July, LinkedIn has duly informed me that my current job, aka, writer, has now become the longest-held position in my professional career.

I recently received a notification of a former colleague who had reached 40 years at the same company. My scientific career was more a set of steppingstones. I was encouraged out of my first job by an arsonist burning down the marine biology laboratory. Moving on to an aquatic toxicology lab, I hopped from “technician” to “supervisor” to “manager” within a matter of months, then “project manager” of a $4.1 million equivalent field project. One week I had the president of the company with his arm around my shoulder congratulating me for the work; a few weeks later I was “downsized” (the president was gone a few months after that). My next move brought me to Washington, D.C. Six years at a consulting firm ended when half the technical people split off into their own solo companies and my boss moved to a new company himself. Rather than rebuild from scratch, I jumped to another consulting firm a few blocks away where things went well for five years until I was laid off (along with 10% of the company). Coincidentally, it happened on the day I had planned to give my notice, having accepted a leadership position in a new company the day before. That new position only lasted 2-1/2 years; the fit was so bad I jumped to a new firm the day I would have received a bonus.

The final place I worked was as a scientist in a law firm. I went there explicitly because I thought it gave me the best opportunity to take the business I had previously developed to a place where it could be better expressed. I also figured the new place could get me a few trips to Europe to service a new regulatory law recently passed. I ended up moving to Brussels for three years. While there I picked up a travel bug.

By the time I returned to the US, I had started thinking more about travel and Abraham Lincoln (my closeted passion). I hung on with the law firm for 2-1/2 more years back in DC while finishing up work for my own clients. Meanwhile, the firm wasn’t making much effort to develop work in new areas of business and my inclination to do so on their behalf was fading quickly. In January 2012 I took two major steps: 1) I went to New York to a writers conference to pitch a book idea, and 2) I joined the Lincoln Group of DC. Both contributed to the star-alignment needed for me to make a major life change.

On September 12, 2013 I quit the firm, left my paid scientific career, and began my “new endeavors” writing and studying Abraham Lincoln.

According to LinkedIn, that makes this month 7 years, 11 months in my current position, my longest time in any one job.

As I’ve written in past “Reflections of a Science Traveler,” it was the best decision I ever made. My first two traditionally published books were science-related: Nikola Tesla, followed by Thomas Edison. I wrote a Tesla e-book to flesh out an interesting aspect of his life that didn’t fit in the original book, then a second e-book to document connections between Tesla (and Edison) and Lincoln. That was my purposeful transition to a Lincoln focus. Fall River Press gave me an opportunity to do a Lincoln book in the same graphics-heavy style of the Tesla and Edison books, and it gave me a successful and rewarding experience.

And now the new Lincoln book manuscript is in the hands of Rowman & Littlefield. Several more books are in various stages. Traveling is about to pick up in a post-pandemic world.

I think I’ll continue at this present job.

David J. Kent is an avid traveler, scientist, and Abraham Lincoln historian. He is the author of Lincoln: The Man Who Saved AmericaTesla: The Wizard of Electricity and Edison: The Inventor of the Modern World as well as two specialty e-books: Nikola Tesla: Renewable Energy Ahead of Its Time and Abraham Lincoln and Nikola Tesla: Connected by Fate.

Check out my Goodreads author page. While you’re at it, “Like” my Facebook author page for more updates!

Live and Learn

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That is “Live” as rhymes with Hive or Dive and not Sieve or Give.

As in, how come you haven’t posted on Hot White Snow in, like, ages?

So yes, I am alive.

And always learning.

Three posts ago, which turns out to have been two entire months back (how time flies), I wrote a piece called “A Quick Ramble.” Since I rarely have the time to write short, the emphasis of that post was more on the ramble than the quick read. Last month I wrote a post on Lincolnian.org, the new website of the Lincoln Group of DC (aka, LGDC), that was sort of an introduction of me to my fellow Lincolnites (or maybe Lincolnians) when I became president of the organization. I had a follow up post on my own author website with more on the non-LGDC aspects of my goings-on.

So, first off, I’ve been doing a lot of writing even though it hasn’t necessarily been on Hot White Snow.

And no, I don’t know why I write for three separate blogs. Well, I do know, but I don’t necessarily understand how.

But it does explain why I haven’t been writing as much here. As the linked blog articles mention, I’ve obviously been focused primarily on finishing up the manuscript for the new book. Currently I’m working on the endnote organization, photo permissions, and never-ending editing (which I do more of in the manuscript than I ever do on these blog posts, I assure you). My deadline is this month so for the next few weeks my focus will continue to be on getting that book finished.

That doesn’t mean I haven’t thought about this blog. My email in-box has dozens (okay, maybe hundreds) of emails to myself with ideas for posts to go here or the other two blogs. Then there are the ones for magazine articles or new books. Then there are the reminders to look at the older emails to see what has scrolled beyond the first page. Granted, it’s not a good system. But it’s me.

Given the topics I’ve tackled here in recent months/years, you can guess what some of the “post ideas” relate to. Things have gone from bad to ludicrous. Our democracy really is in danger. The scariest part is that it mimes what our history already went through in the past. We haven’t learned. But…I won’t go into that today. I’ll save those for tomorrow, because, well, tomorrow is another day. [Yes, the reference is intended] [N.B. By tomorrow I probably mean next month]

Once the manuscript is in I’ll be picking up the writing pace again on Hot White Snow (and my author website). I’ll be talking about topics related to the book, of course, but I also plan to revisit some of the intermittent series previously gracing these pages. Those related to travel, 50 Objects, small town life, writing, and a hodgepodge of other topics.

Time is up.

Back to editing.

David J. Kent is an avid traveler, scientist, and Abraham Lincoln historian. He is the author of Lincoln: The Man Who Saved AmericaTesla: The Wizard of Electricity and Edison: The Inventor of the Modern World as well as two specialty e-books: Nikola Tesla: Renewable Energy Ahead of Its Time and Abraham Lincoln and Nikola Tesla: Connected by Fate.

Check out my Goodreads author page. While you’re at it, “Like” my Facebook author page for more updates!