From the Left



His Excellency, Don Diego

From the Left / Marc Munroe Dion /

I tried. I swear I tried.

Like any columnist, I combed the week's news, looking for that thing from which a newspaper column could be built.

Iran. Nukes. Impeachment. The British royal family. Drugs. Tariffs. Heartbreak and fear and the sense that standards are slipping everywhere.

Scared hell out of me, is what happened.

And then, it struck...Read more

Opening up a can of America

From the Left / Marc Munroe Dion /

Well, we done it. We kicked Iranian butt. We butt-kicked 'em. Their butts were kicked. We put a boot in their butts. Their butts, they were kicked. We opened up a can of butt-kick. We came to eat lollipops and kick butt, and we were out of lollipops. We took names and kicked butts. Butt kick. Kick butt. Works the same way backward and forward. ...Read more

Texas Shooting: Playing the Numbers

From the Left / Marc Munroe Dion /

In Texas, where life is cheap, and so are the senators, a plucky church security force member raised his gun in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost, and shot dead a gunman who'd already killed two people.

Praise Jayzus! Praise his holy name!

And, of course, pass the ammunition!

The killing of the killer is being touted as one ...Read more

A smooth stone...

From the Left / Marc Munroe Dion /

I'm writing this on Christmas Day. All the wrapping has been torn. The church at the end of my street has put Jesus in the manger. My wife liked her gifts, and we had a huge Irish breakfast of eggs, bacon, sausage, blood pudding, beans, toast and strong tea.

My mother died last February. My wife's mother died in October. We are both only ...Read more

Warmed by the breath of fools

From the Left / Marc Munroe Dion /

Although the crucifixion and resurrection are central to Christianity, I am most moved by The Babe in the manger, by his dimpled arms and helpless, weakly grasping hands, by Joseph's worried face, by Mary's tired, half-closed eyes, by the scratchy straw on his tender skin and the close dung smell of the animals.

So helpless and so small, the ...Read more

For what it's worth

From the Left / Marc Munroe Dion /

I'm a 62-year-old man who, by being cheap for 30 years of his life, managed to save some money. A lot of generic groceries and off-brand beer passed down this old reporter's neck in order to keep funding the 401(k) and the mutual funds, but in the end, I wound up with about 10 years pay in savings, all of it busily, capitalistically making money...Read more

A lesson learned from a knife and a chair

From the Left / Marc Munroe Dion /

About two miles from my house, in the same city, there's a convenience store. It sells coffee, liquor, beer, lottery tickets, sandwiches wrapped in plastic and disposal lighters, and it offers two aisles of canned goods, toilet paper and disposable diapers.

There used to be a Hindu temple across the street, located in a former paper-box factory...Read more

Pardon my turkey

From the Left / Marc Munroe Dion /

Heavy lies the head that wears the turkey.

Pres. Donald Trump pardoned two turkeys just before Thanksgiving Day. It's a holiday tradition. Ever year, in a display of commercialized might, the president pardons two turkeys and a war criminal. The two turkeys go to some kind of turkey rescue facility. The war criminal gets a promotion, may ...Read more

The socioeconomics of menthol cigarettes

From the Left / Marc Munroe Dion /

In my home state of Massachusetts, where a wily state government has found a way to do everything except stop people from leaving the older cities, there is a war on flavored tobacco and vaping products. A ban of both is on the way.

Ostensibly, this is to protect our children, who are presumably lured into smoking by flavored products.

"Who do...Read more

Stop shoving your sports agenda down my throat

From the Left / Marc Munroe Dion /

I'm what used to be called a "regular guy." House. Wife. Job. Taxes. Scared of street crime. Frozen pizza. Flannel shirts. Draft beer. Used car. It took me six months to pay off the new mattress I bought.

But I don't like sports.

By that, I mean I have never seen a complete basketball or hockey game, I can't name five professional baseball or ...Read more

Christmas Spice

From the Left / Marc Munroe Dion /

I write columns about politics, and about governing, and about Pres. Donald Trump, who is politics but not governing, and about poverty, which is always the result of politics but never the result of governing.

And, after retiring from a 36-year career as a newspaper reporter, I took a job with a local talk radio station. Callers sometimes call...Read more

We're treating veterans like dogs

From the Left / Marc Munroe Dion /

Canines have had an up-and-down kind of month. Pres. Donald Trump noted some similarities between the death of a terrorist and the way a dog dies. That's an insult to every red-blooded American pit bull who ever went down snarling in an illegal dogfight sponsored by a professional athlete. That's why Trump gets booed at ball games.

But he did ...Read more


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