Interview with photog

Longtime readers know that photog of Orion’s Cold Fire is a blogger buddy of mine.  He recently proposed we “interview” one another via e-mail—a project we both hope more folks will engage in soon.  We asked each other five questions and responded.  You’ll be able to read my responses at his blog this morning, too.

Here are photog’s responses to my questions, reproduced without editing, other than for style and for adding links to the books he referenced:

1.) How do you describe yourself politically?

Probably the easiest way for me to tell you what my politics are is to describe my road to it.  I’ve always been a political conservative.  Even as a teenager I was rooting for Richard Nixon during his downfall.  I was enormously enthusiastic of Ronald Reagan and his attempt to return America to greatness.  But during the first Bush presidency I sensed something was going wrong but I didn’t know what.  But living through Clinton and W and especially Obama I finally understood what I thought was wrong with our country.  We had been bamboozled by the fake conservatives in the Republican establishment.  And that’s both the politicians and the media.  They told us they were fighting for the things we believed in and standing up to the progressives on social issues.  It was a total lie.

When Trump ran for President, I listened to what he was saying and realized he was pulling the curtain back and revealing the GOP Establishment lies.  And he offered to give us what we wanted.  That was a transformative moment.  And it re-aligned me.  I am a radical social conservative.  I don’t care any longer about finance, defense or any other aspect of government.  I admit those things have importance but what matters to me is that I be allowed to have the things that are actually important in life without progressives tainting them.  I want to believe in my God.  I want to raise my family by my moral and cultural precepts.  I want freedom of speech, freedom of association and the right to protect myself with whatever weapons are needed to do that.  I want the freedom to be left alone.

And because of what I’ve seen in my life I hate the progressives worse than any foreign threat.  They are a cancer and I will move to whatever state tells the federal government that any unconstitutional law that they write even if upheld by the Supreme Court is null and void in their state.  That’s my political stripe.

2.) Which book or books have been the most influential in shaping how you see the world?

I would have to say that my view of the world has been primarily shaped by a few larger forces.  I studied classical literature, history and science.  All of these have pushed me toward conservatism.  Reading Aristotle and the Greek and Roman historians has convinced me that only free people have a life worth living.  And history and science and engineering have convinced me that utopian systems like Marxism have nothing to do with scientific thinking or even reality.

And interestingly, quantum physics has convinced me that atheism is completely unprovable.  Which is always a great bonus for a religious person.

A couple of books that I have read in the last year or two that I thought had some good information are:

The Age of Entitlement: America Since the Sixties, Hardcover – by Christopher Caldwell

American Nations: A History of the Eleven Rival Regional Cultures of North America – by Colin Woodard

The Benedict Option: A Strategy for Christians in a Post-Christian Nation – by Rod Dreher

3.) What is the hardest part of being conservative in a progressive State like Massachusetts?

The hardest thing for a conservative in New England is being surrounded by an ocean of progressivism.  It infects everything and everybody and makes normal, honest life virtually impossible.  As a good example the progressive reaction to COVID is a fear based religious zealotry to control every action of everyone.  And that makes for a pretty horrible existence.

4.) What advice would you give to your grandsons about dating, relationships, women, etc.? What advice would you give to your granddaughters about the same (except replace “women” with “men”)?

What I plan to tell my grandchildren is that all of the nonsense they read and hear is just that, nonsense.  I will tell them that the goal is to find a good person that will work with them to raise a family and make each other happy.  I will explain that if they are honest that that is their goal, they can avoid the confused and dysfunctional people out there.  And I will tell them that bringing home their prospective mates is a very good way of getting useful feedback from people who have already figured out the whole dating and marriage thing successfully.

I’ll also tell them to look carefully at the parents of a girlfriend or boyfriend to see if they come from a healthy family.  That is also a good way of telling whether you speak the same language.

And finally, I’ll tell them to come visit me with them.  I consider myself the world’s greatest living authority on everything including marriage.

5.) As a grandfather, what kind of future do you foresee for your grandchildren?  How do we assure their futures are bright and full of opportunity?

This is the hardest one of all.  It is wrapped up with whether this country escapes from the progressives or is conquered by them.  If it is conquered conclusively, I think the best future for my descendants may be overseas.  I haven’t done enough research yet.  Maybe there is no better place than here.  If that is the case then it will be necessary to develop a sort of underground existence.  They’ll have to mimic the behavior of the hive but maintain their inner life with other people who also have an understanding of what’s real.

If you’d like to read more of photog’s thoughts—or to view his beautiful photography—visit him at  If you’d like to support his work, donate to his blog.


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