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Bill Moyers & Me

By May 20, 20164 Comments

bill moyers

My eyes betrayed the depth of my feelings as they spontaneously filled with tears when Bill Moyers made his way to the microphone to deliver his recent talk here a few nights ago.  I have been a devoted follower of his for decades now, but seeing him in person for the first time and listening to him speak, was an incredibly powerful and revelatory experience.

In fact, I have never before listened and focused so intently to an hour long speech. My mind never drifted.  He deftly wove together the pieces of this gigantic puzzle we call electoral politics in the USA to help his audience gain understanding of our current national situation . Moyers is the Real Deal. I view him as a contemporary oracle. He personifies integrity, decency, compassion, thoughtfulness, intelligence, and commitment.  He’s in possession of the rare ability of one who can see the forest for the trees.  He doesn’t paint with stunted brushes. He uses all the considerable tools that are in his possession to make his points, be it quotes from philosophers, lessons from history, or the latest news. His message is CONSIDERED and not the usual worthless opinions that emerge from the blabbering mouths of the so called pundits in the electronic world.

This night he painted a grim picture of our current state of affairs, pulling no punches about the challenges we face as a nation. He did not mince words or offer glib or partisan solutions.  He described a problem and its genesis so that we could better grasp its significance.  I walked into the theatre somewhat aware.  I walked out with his message reverberating within me.  His words were too powerful to ignore or deny. After listening to him, I think it’s inviting disaster to pretend this crisis might just evaporate.

Civilization is but a thin veneer stretched across the passions of the human heart. And civilization doesn’t just happen; we have to make it happen.”
Bill Moyers

A brief summary:  Our democracy is in jeopardy.  Sarah Palin set the stage for a candidate like Trump to become acceptable to many Republicans. The coddling of the Tea Party laid groundwork for Candidate Trump as well. Add the disintegration of the Middle Class, the huge reductions in real reporting that has come about as the result of failing newspapers and reduced numbers of reporters, the Citizens United ruling…then add in our fascination and worship of celebrities.  Our system is rigged, no doubt about it.

“Our media and political system has turned into a mutual protection racket.”
Bill Moyers

Trump is nobody. No body.  His followers project whatever they want to see on his image. There’s no there there.  Basically, he’s a mean egomaniac.

Although Moyer’s talk was grave, I left the theatre determined to play whatever role I can to see that the Donald doesn’t become president or ever come to represent our country.

Bill Moyers represents everything I admire in a person.  It was good to be reminded that there are still people like him in public life, living life not for his own gain, but for the well being of us all.

“What’s right and good doesn’t come naturally. You have to stand up and fight for it – as if the cause depends on you, because it does.”

-Bill Moyers


Dianne Vapnek

In an attempt to slow life's quickening pace, I'm writing to share my personal perspective on the aging process, its dilemmas, the humorous self-deception, the insights and the adventure of it all. I spent the bulk of my time in beautiful Santa Barbara, CA, but manage to get to NYC a few times times a year. I've been a dancer/dance teacher and dance supporter almost all my life. For the past20years, I help create and produce a month-long creative residency in Santa Barbara for contemporary American choreographers and their dancers. It's been incredibly gratifying. This year, I decided it's time to retire! Big change. I also now spend several weeks a year in Kyoto Japan, residing for several weeks in the spring and the fall. I've been magnetically attracted to Japan for many years. Now I live out a dream to live there part-time.


  • Susan Alexander says:

    Thanks for a great summation of what Bill Moyers talked about the other night. I’m sorry I missed it, but I thank you for sharing your thoughts about it with us who weren’t there.

  • Judi Wallner says:

    Brillant post Dianne…how fortunate to have the chance to see him in person. Wish that everyone had his clarity!

  • Eleanor Moriarty says:

    Thanks D for forwarding. I have and am a huge fan. I am very very scared.