Jimmy Sengenberger

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Debate Hour #1: Can a Buddhist support Trump based on the 5 Mindfulness Trainings?

November 29, 2018 Seng Center Blog Christianity, migration, Precepts & Judaism, sexuality

No Buddhist Can Support The 5 Mindfulness Trainings 
& Support Donald J. Trump   
Views of Liberalism, Leftism, Conservatism, 
Nationalism & Globalism
Airdate:  11/24/18
[1st HOUR]
JIMMY SENGENBERGER:   Saturday night is always alright for ”The Jimmy Sengenberger Show”, right here on NewsTalk 710 KNUS.  Thanks for joining us and being a part of the program…
I want to introduce our guests and the topic.  The topic is whether or not – at least in the beginning – a Buddhist can support President Trump.  Now, this was something we were hoping to discuss a few months ago, things went a little bit awry in the show and so we forestalled the event, and pleased to bring it to you today.  Hope you all had a great Thanksgiving.  We will talk about a variety of different topics about understanding the Left later on in the show but really wanted to get into this topic of conversation, on whether a Buddhist can support President Trump.
So I am pleased to welcome back to “The Jimmy Sengenberger Show” two great friends of mine.  First, Dr. Marv Treiger in California, joining us over the phone, is a retired psychotherapist and former Marxist radical who was once so far to the Left that on the 50th anniversary of the Bolshevik Revolution he and a group of comrades bolted from the Communist Party because it was, as I say, “too CINO for him,” that is Communist-in-Name-Only.  He also had even spent time as we’ve talked about before, with the Nicaraguan Sandinistas in the 1980’s.  After 9/11, though, he became a Conservative and now strongly supports President Donald Trump.  Marv is a practicing Buddhist who has led retreats and workshops since 1996 all around California and Nevada as well as at Antioch University.  He largely attributes his Buddhist faith as having helped lead the roto-rooter process that eroded his leftist ideology and brought him to Conservatism.
On the other side, though, here in studio, we’ve got Dr. Rob Margesson, an Associate professor of Communication at my alma mater, Regis University, where he is Chair of the Communications Department and Director of the Forensics Debate Program.  Although decidedly a man of the Left and no fan of President Trump I think we concluded previously that Rob is not best-described as a Leftist, at least in particular how he approaches politics tactically.  He is a strong advocate for free speech, both on and off of university campuses.  At Regis, Rob teaches subjects that include ethics and Buddhism, which he has studied at length.  Thus, though not himself a Buddhist, Rob Margesson descends from the proposition that a Buddhist can’t support Donald Trump.  Both are intelligent, thoughtful and good men who I’m pleased to call my friends and very happy to at long last welcome back to the show together.
Gentlemen, welcome to the program.  Dr. Marv Treiger, good evening, first.
DR. MARVIN TREIGER:   Hey, good evening, Jimmy!
SENGENBERGER:   And good evening, Dr. Rob Margesson.  How’re you doing, my friend?
PROF. ROB MARGESSON:   Good, good.  I want to open with an apology.  I was the cause of the delay a few months back, and so I’ve already apologized to Marv via email but now that I have a microphone in front of me I’ll apologize again to you, Marv.  I’m sorry that I stood you up.  It was not on purpose.
TREIGER:   Oh, I really appreciated your generous letter and in doing so.  And so, you know, forward and onward.
SENGENBERGER:   So, let’s talk here.  I think best to just set the stage and go right to the reason for this conversation.  I had originally planned, when I was going to first have you both on during the summer, to talk about understanding the Left and getting the perspective of a professor who’s on the Left and a Conservative who was once very much far to the Left, as I just described before.  But then Rob, you made the point to me that you didn’t think that a Buddhist could truly be a Trump supporter, which got me thinking, okay, maybe that would be a good inclusion or, even more so, the central starting premise for a discussion.  And so I wonder if you could just lay down the scene as to why you think a Buddhist cannot support President Trump, and then we’ll get more into some of the aspects of Buddhism and things along those lines in detail.
MARGESSON:   Okay, yeah.  I mean, I’m probably in way over my head against Marv, so I expect maybe to take a whupping today, but I’ve years and years of debate experience —
[PODCAST 5:20]
TREIGER:   [chuckling]
MARGESSON:   – – and part of that experience was taking my losses, so I’m okay with that.  You know, the more I thought about it, I guess where I’m coming from ~~ my original response was, well, that’s impossible, but it’s obviously not because you are.  But I’m just trying to wrap my brain around how one can support – not Conservative thought, I don’t think that Conservatism thought is necessarily antithetical with Buddhism – but the behavior of the President of The United States, and to support the behavior, a lot of which I think is antithetical to Buddhist Thought.  So, I mean I’m drawn mostly to the writings of Thích Nht Hnh when I teach Buddhism, I don’t teach a class in it but I scatter his work through a lot of my classes, I think his work is insightful and applicable in a lot of my courses.  And so, you know, as I’ve read his work, especially kind of focus my attention on his interpretation of the Five Mindfulness Trainings, I just really struggle to see how President Trump doesn’t violate all five of them, and how it is you can then support an individual who engages in what I would say, again, is the complete opposite of what those Five Mindfulness Trainings teach us.  And we’ll probably have to talk about what those are because most people probably don’t know what they are —
[PODCAST 6:58]
SENGENBERGER:   [chuckling] 
MARGESSON:   I’m sure Marv does.  But yeah, so, I guess for me it’s just a question of how looking at that list, which I kind of see as foundational —
SENGENBERGER:  Do you want to lay that out briefly, Rob, as to what they are and how they seem contrary to —
MARGESSON:   Well, I’ll let Marv —
SENGENBERGER:   Go ahead, go ahead, Marv.
TREIGER:   Yeah, let me maybe say some general things about (them), first of all, it’s true that I self-identify as a Buddhist and you do not, and in both cases it’s much better to be a Buddha, so I think we’re on equal ground with regard to that matter.  With regard to the mindfulness trainings and Thích Nht Hnh’s, you could say, updated version of the Buddhist teachings – I mean, I was alive long before the so-called Five Mindfulness Trainings even came into existence, which is his bringing together a number of other teachings into one place and then wrapping it in a certain way.
But the thing about it that I think should be stated for the listener is that these are rooted in the Five Precepts primarily, which is something that one takes these precepts on if one becomes a Buddhist.  And the precepts are really a training, and Thích Nht Hnh makes it very clear that it is a training, at least he says that in the title – doesn’t go into that part very much – but that’s key because in fact none of them are fully realizable, you might say, and so we’re engaged in a training.  And the Buddhist Five Precepts, which we’re going to go into is no ~~ really, in essence, overlaps with the Ten Commandments.  And the Ten Commandments – and by the way, recent Jewish scholarship has said that that word Commandment is really a mistranslation and that is should be called “The Ten Precepts.”
And thirdly, the third pillar of this point I want to make, is that all of those precepts and in whatever religion they might appear, are fundamental guidelines that the American Founders expressed in the idea of the Laws of Nature and Nature’s God, of Natural Law and Natural Rights, so there’s definitely a through-line between all civilizing circumstances in society and the founding documents of our own country.  So, if we sort of take that in mind, take into mind that it’s a training, that it’s never fully realizable, then I think we can start to talk about them.
[PODCAST 10:09]
SENGENBERGER:   Marv, can you just give us a two-minute primer on what Buddhism is and the overarching concept of the Five Precepts, or maybe we can do three minutes here and go into, until we need to go to a break.
TREIGER:   Well, okay.  See, it’s a very ~~ so, okay.  So, in Buddhism, there are different sets of precepts.  The Five Precepts in original Buddhism were something that lay Buddhists took – that was ordinary Buddhists, like people who, you know, like people here in Christianity go to church and they take on certain values, approaches, vows of various kinds.  But there are different vows for different functions, and so it isn’t that everything hangs on the Five Precepts whatsoever, but they’re very powerful, and Thích Nht Hnh really articulates them very well.  In a flyer I put out I put a link down to his precepts, and I spent ten days studying with Thích Nht Hnh and know his work very well and am quite familiar with the tremendous contributions that he has made to Buddhism and to the betterment of human beings.  Like, he calls this a non-sectarian set of precepts, and really it is non-sectarian because it’s rooted in Natural Law.
So the Five Precepts, the original ones, were basically refraining from killing, from stealing, from sexual misconduct, from false speech, and from the use of intoxicants.  Originally, by the way, there were only Four Precepts and the fifth one came in because, well, the monks were getting a little too tipsy.
[PODCAST 12:19]
SENGENBERGER:   [Chuckling]
TREIGER:   So that one got thrown in and it was the first of what became a whole longer series of outer principles.  But so let’s take, you know, maybe, saying that, maybe Rob could ~~ well, let me link it just first, because I know a lot of our listeners —
SENGENBERGER:   Yeah, we’ve got one minute, Marv.
TREIGER:   Oh, okay, let me just link that to the Ten Commandments, because I think that’s something that our listeners would be, you know, quite resonant with.  The Ten Commandments, the last one, is “You Shall Not Covet”.  And even though that’s not part of these Five Buddhist Precepts, you could say that that’s at the core of Buddhist Thought.  In other words, that suffering is caused by craving and grasping and then attaching to those cravings and graspings.  “You Shall Not Covet” is precisely linked to that, and it’s very interesting because that Commandment, which is the Tenth one, is the only one that is actually kind of a mental one, except for the first Two, but most of them have to do with the other Precepts and are right here, “You Shall Not Steal”, “You Shall Not Kill” – although that —
[PODCAST 13:46]
SENGENBERGER:   Got to pause it there, Marv, as you guys know, and this is always the displeasure of having hard breaks, we’re up against a commercial break.  We’ll come back, we’ll pick up Dr. Rob Margesson and Dr. Marv Treiger.  Stay with us.
[Commercial Break]
 [PODCAST 15:21]
SENGENBERGER:   [Intro: Gov’t Mule’s cover of Cyndi Lauper’s “Mother Earth”] When it all comes down to it folks, indeed, you’ve got to go back to Mother Earth.  Welcome back to “The Jimmy Sengenberger Show.”  Wanted to start off with a little Gov’t Mule since we have in studio Dr. Rob Margesson and this is a band, Gov’t Mule, that we commiserated on back when I was at Regis.  Never had you as a professor but we did connect on music and so forth.  Tonight we’re talking about whether or not a Buddhist can be a Trump supporter, as Dr. Treiger, Marv, is.
So Marv, you were making some comparison points, and if you could just briefly finish up that point, and encapsulate it as well, to how the Five Precepts of Buddhism are associated with the Ten Commandments, in a sense.
[PODCAST 16:16]
TREIGER:   Well, very much so.  If this was the subject of the show I could go into it in great depth.  But basically, one might as well then, Rob, be asking the question as to, well, then a Christian couldn’t support Trump, or a Jew couldn’t support Trump, so it’s not just Buddhists, we’re not in some particular special camp who should not support Trump if Trump is not to be supported.  And, of course, I’ll be making the case that he not only should be supported but that support will be even more meaningful when it actually takes the form of love.
SENGENBERGER:   Alright. Well Rob, your thoughts on kind of, given some of the basics that we’ve just gone over, what are your issues with the idea of someone of a Buddhist, or maybe if we extrapolate beyond that to a true Christian or true Jew or what-have-you, as being a Trump supporter.
MARGESSON:   I’m not touching the Christian question on Conservative talk radio.  
SENGENBERGER:   Fair enough [chuckling].
MARGESSON:   You’re insane if you think I’m going to go there.
SENGENBERGER:   [laughing]
TREIGER:   [laughing]
SENGENBERGER:   Fair enough.  Fair enough.  We’ll stick to Buddhism just for you.
MARGESSON:   Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah —
TREIGER:   [inaudible]
MARGESSON:   No, I mean —
TREIGER:   We can take it.
MARGESSON:   Yeah, and Marv’s point is a legitimate one that I could be asking the very same questions about other people with different —
SENGENBERGER:   But that’s not the subject that we brought you guys here to do, so that’s perfectly fair.
MARGESSON:   Yeah, yeah, and I would get yelled at so much on the phone and I don’t like getting yelled at by your listeners.
SENGENBERGER:   They’re nice.
MARGESSON:   They are very nice, they just ~~ sometimes I rub them the wrong way.  No, I kind of want to go back, I guess I would make a similar argument, if this were the case, that if there were a politician or even an individual in my life who if I were to identify as a Christian who was kind of constantly openly and kind of in a celebratory way violating a number of the Ten Commandments I would probably also question the legitimacy of that relationship or the leadership of that individual.  But ~~ because for me at the end of the day, that’s what it gets down to.  And I agree on the love thing, I’m not here to hate, you’re never going to hear me say, we should all hate Trump, that that’s the alternative.  I just, what I struggle with, if we can go back to the Precepts, which I just think is the simplest way —
TREIGER:   Yeah.
MARGESSON:   For now.
TREIGER:   Good.
MARGESSON:   I’m just wondering, you know, again, there’s this kind of brazen, open hostility towards the underlying message of those precepts, very public —
MARGESSON:   I mean, there’s ~~ we could get into example wars for a while.  But, you know, take Precept – my reading glasses are, I need to put my paper clips in front of my face, I’m sorry – Precept #3, which is the one that deals with the issues around sexual morality and behavior and we could look at some of the things that President Trump has been recorded saying about his attitudes towards women, including the famous ‘grab them by the [word-I-won’t-say-on-the-radio]’ comment and other kinds.  So, I guess I just struggle, and that’s one example and we can get into others if we want to talk about the various Precepts.  What I struggle with is very public displays of hostility towards the ideas that drive the Precepts, you know, this respect for human life or the respect for life that is the First Precept, which, you know, isn’t just about not killing people but also engaging in acts that do not lead to the dehumanization and marginalization of people.  I think a lot of his policies are very dehumanizing, I think the way that he talks about people who are not of our country is oftentimes very dehumanizing and hostile, which is not a reverence for their life.  You know, we can get into the issue of false speaking and the variety of lies that have been catalogued coming out of his mouth leading into his Presidency and while he was the President.  And so —
SENGENBERGER:   We’ll get into those kinds of things when we come back here on “The Jimmy Sengenberger Show.”  Dr. Rob Margesson of Regis University here in studio, on the phone Dr. Marv Treiger.  Stay with us, don’t go anywhere.  NewsTalk 710 KNUS.
[Commercial Break]
 [PODCAST 22:11]
SENGENBERGER:   Coming back on “The Jimmy Sengenberger Show”, groovin’ along to Tedeschi Trucks Band, here with the best bumper music known to man, NewsTalk 710 KNUS…    [PODCAST 22:51]
Continuing our great debate, Rob has proposed the notion that it is something to struggle with, at least, as you’ve been saying — 
SENGENBERGER:   – – the notion of a Buddhist supporting President Trump.  And I want to go back, you were just laying out a few ideas.  I’d like you to concretely provide some specific example or something in particular for Marv to respond to about where you think there’s a disconnect.
[PODCAST 23:39]
MARGESSON:   Yeah, I think I was speaking a little broadly there so maybe just the easiest thing for me to do is if I can ask Marv a question about an example and then he can educate me on this.  So just looking again at the First Precept about respecting life and my read on Thích Nht Hnh and that Precept, it’s that this notion of respecting Life isn’t just about not killing but it’s also literally respecting the lives of individuals and not dehumanizing them or marginalizing them.  And the example that comes to mind for me, and I’d love to hear your thoughts, is this hoard of immigrants that are supposedly pouring towards our border, who seem to be described by the President as these kind of animalistic beings that are storming towards us because they want to jump in here illegally and take advantage of all of the benefits of this great country of ours and —
SENGENBERGER:   He describes it as an invasion. 
MARGESSON:   – – as an invasion.  So ~~ and my understanding is that these individuals are actually folks who are hoping to come to America and apply for asylum, which is a legal process so they’re, this is not a hoard of people who are trying to sneak in but a group of people or hoard, I guess, who wants to use the system that’s been put in place for people like them and they could be refused.  And the response from the President initially, other than the kind of dehumanizing language he uses about them, is to militarize the border, to send troops with weapons to the border, to meet these people head on.  And I’m curious how kind of that particular policy and that particular behavior cannot be seen as dehumanizing and disrespectful to the lives of those individuals.
[PODCAST 25:45]
SENGENBERGER:   Dr. Marv Treiger, what are your thoughts on that question?
TREIGER:   Well, I would say that, first of all, that it’s respectful and honoring the lives of citizens of the United States, and secondly, of all those immigrants that have been standing in line lawfully in order to come through the due process to become citizens.  Now, this is an extremely important point, because the people that are coming to the boarder in larger and larger numbers – and I think ‘invasion’ is a very good word for it, in fact, it’s the word that the Mayor of Tijuana and the demonstrators in Tijuana, who are opposed to this thing, who are citizens of Mexico, have been using as well.  But I would say that the reason why this is so important is that even if a person was just somebody who is interested, just looking for a better life – and I would say the majority of those coming are of that nature, that is who the majority of them are – in there, now there’s a number of reports of Homeland Security, other reports of at least five hundred criminals, then there’re many people who have already been deported.  But okay, let’s say the majority are, in fact, want to be decent law-abiding citizens.  And what is their first entry into the country?  Breaking the law!  This undermines their sense of what it is they’re moving into and what they’re going to come to belong to.  It’s so different than the kind of ritual that went on at Ellis Island and the regard and the respect and the kind of preparation and training, because all that is part of the process of assimilation that keeps our country whole.  Now, when I say ‘keeps it whole,’ I mean connected to the valuable things in its origins and in its basis, and we cannot do that without secure borders.  This is the crucial, defining issue.
So, I think that Trump’s fundamental policy is right on and it’s really for the benefit of the American people, primarily and firstly, and then the benefit of immigrants because we are an immigrant-welcoming country.  But we are not a border-dissolving country, and that’s what has been going on and the Left is pushing for.  All of this stuff going on down there is organized, it’s mobilized, it isn’t just happening, it isn’t just suddenly on some Sunday everyone decided that they wanted to go to El Norte.  So, I mean, I spent, like, over six months in Nicaragua, myself, and I know the people, I know the situation and many others.  So that’s what I would basically say about that, —
[PODCAST 28:48]
SENGENBERGER:   Can I let Rob respond or do you have a —
TREIGER:   Yeah.
SENGENBERGER:   Yeah, if you could, Rob.
TREIGER:   Sure, no, no, no, I don’t want to monopolize.
MARGESSON:   Oh no, I feel like we’re maybe talking about two different groups of individuals because I’m ~~ I mean, we have people who are organized, yes, we have people who are coming North who are claiming that they are hoping to seek political asylum, so these are people who are saying that they are hoping to use the process that is in place for people like them, so I don’t see this as border-hoppers but a group of people —
TREIGER:   Well, this —
MARGESSON:   Like this ~~ and the military gets sent there.  So, it just, to me, it seems like, I can’t wrap my brain around it.
SENGENBERGER:   Alright, Marv.
TREIGER:   Well, okay, but it’s not ~~ the two groups are very much overlapping because there’s the ACLU and all kinds of other groups that are over there training people how to convince us that it’s asylum that they are seeking.  And we have a broken system on our side.  On our side, the system right now, in terms of the direct law, is catch-and-release, which means – and then the people are supposed to stand for a hearing – but there’s 318,000 in the backlog right now.  They’re just, the judges aren’t set up to do it, it’s a terrible law and the law needs to be changed.  But why isn’t the law being changed?  Because it turns out there’s an Establishment in Washington, Democratic and Republican, who simply want to keep a kind of porous border, each for their own reasons, even if that hurts the American People and our system of law and ~~ it’s all about, on the one hand, profits, and on other hand, votes.  So, I think that we’ve finally found somebody who became the President who was really serious about taking this question on and in a serious way, and I think that that is important.
Now, why the military?  Well, because in fact, we don’t have enough border police.  And they have to do all these other little tasks in the background, and that’s what the military is doing, they’re taking up those tasks on behalf of the border police.  So, I think that it also, you know, Trump also threatened to close the border entirely.  And I think through that threat is now on the eve of an agreement with Obrador, the new President of Mexico, and that is that Mexico – because asylum laws, universal asylum laws hold that when you seek asylum, you must seek it in the first country you come to, and Mexico is the first country that Central Americans come to.  And so, Mexico offered for them to sign up, volunteer, do that kind of thing.  They didn’t do it, they just kept on coming.  And these asylum seekers, by the way, were all carrying flags of the country they were coming from which is kind of a really strange anomaly.  But that aside, there’s now on the verge of an agreement that Mexico will allow those people to remain in the country until the United States can duly process the asylum applications.  And that, I think, would be a way of getting around the fact that Congress and the Senate are unwilling to deal with immigration when it needs to be dealt with.  They all say they’re going to deal with it and they all say it’s broken and they all say this and they don’t do diddly-squat.
[PODCAST 33:00]
MARGESSON:   You know, broken system aside, I still don’t understand why there is a need for the President of the United States to describe these people, many of whom – I hope we can agree – many of whom have a legitimate reason to escape their home country because of violence and corruption, I’m just not sure why we need to describe them as this rabid hoard of invaders, which creates fear and, again, dehumanizes these individuals —
TREIGER:   I don’t think he said ‘rabid hoard,’ I don’t think that’s been ever and expression of his.  I think he has spoken of invaders and he’s spoken of criminals and he’s spoken of drug runners and cartels ~~ you know, the cartels control northern Mexico.  And by the way, it’s my belief that they’re the ones behind the demonstration in Tijuana – they give their orders to the local mayor.  Because what’s happening is that the border’s getting much more tight and closed, and it’s going to be difficult for the drug runners to get across.  And so, these immigrant caravans are actually in the way of the delivery of the drugs to further enhance the opioid crisis in America.  So, you know, there’re many little interesting moving pieces.  But I would like to say —
SENGENBERGER:   Well, but Marv —
TREIGER:   Yeah, go ahead.
SENGENBERGER:   I was just going to jump in and kind of, to amplify the point of what another friend of mine, who agrees with Rob’s proposition here about Buddhism and Trump, he pointed out the notion of kids in cages and the whole idea of the dehumanizing image of seeing children who are being in essence put more or less in cages or these types of prison-like situations that have been depicted, that that seems anathema to what might be one of these Buddhist Precepts such as on Life. We’ve got about a minute-and-a-half for you to address that point.
TREIGER:   Well, Obama actually did that on a much larger scale, there were many more children separated from family.  And it has to do with a particular law regarding ~~ there’s a twenty-day period where when you’re being processed there has to be that separation and that’s the law.  Now, Trump with an executive order threw that out, so that the families could be united [chuckling] and one of these judges went in and opposed it and so, in fact, it had to be the case.  So, he made whatever effort he could [inaudible].  But I think what I want to say here about the Precepts – this is really important to you guys – and that is this: we’re talking about voting for a political leader.  And in my opinion, if you agree 70% with a political leader relative to, say, the other one or not voting, then that’s enough to vote for them.  If, on the other hand, you agree 100% with them, then I think I’m going to have to revive my psychotherapy practice and take you on as a client.
SENGENBERGER:   [chuckling]
MARGESSON:   [chuckling]
[PODCAST 36:17]
TREIGER:   And the standard that is being asked here, I think underlying our conversation, is that if you’re a Buddhist and you accept the Precepts, you can’t support somebody who’s not a Buddhist and doesn’t accept the Precepts.  And I think that that whole premise is just completely not right, and I hope we get to talk about Access Hollywood.
SENGENBERGER:   Yeah, sure.  Well, we’ve got to take a break here, time flies when you’re having a very interesting conversation.  Dr. Marv Treiger on the phone, Dr. Rob Margesson will get the chance to address Marv’s point there when we return here on 710 KNUS.  Then in the next hour we’ll also open up to the phones at (303) 696-1971.  You’re listening to “The Jimmy Sengenberger Show,” stay with us.
[PODCAST 37:00]
[Commercial Break]
[PODCAST 37:39]
SENGENBERGER:   Junior Wells there, gotta love him, with Buddy Guy on the guitar, here on 710 KNUS.  Jimmy Sengenberger returning on the program.  Thanks for joining us.  Dr. Marv Treiger on the line, Rob Margesson in studio… And Marv, without getting into the details of what you just said, that last point about the Precepts and Trump, if you could just restate what you said before real quickly so I can have Rob respond to that.
TREIGER:   Well, just in electing or supporting or voting for a political leader, if you are of a particular faith or disposition or certain values and everything else, and the leader or the person you vote for, you know, isn’t there 100%, you’ll never find that.  If you think you’ve found it you’re really a little deluded.  But if you can get 70% support, that you can support them in, especially if the other candidate is totally miserable, then you vote for them, and that’s the game board of politics that we play on in elections.  And so, I don’t agree with everything Trump does but I certainly agree with him, actually above 70%, and I’m happy that he’s kept his promises.
SENGENBERGER:   Alright.  Rob?
MARGESSON:   Um, I guess I have a little more difficult time separating the character from the action.  I agree there’s no one politician that I support 100%, but I just, I don’t know that I could vote for someone, even if I agreed with them on a policy level, who violates a deeply-held personal belief of mine.  I just don’t know that I could do it.  I don’t know that I can say, well, I —
TREIGER:   Who’d you vote for in 2016, if you did?
MARGESSON:   Uh, that’s my business.  As a professor at a university —
TREIGER:   Oh, okay, sure.  No, no problem.
MARGESSON:   No, no, as a professor at a university, I’m registered —
TREIGER:   Oh.  Hey, look, I know about that.  I know about that.
MARGESSON:   I’m registered Independent, ladies and gentlemen, so —
TREIGER:   [chuckling]
TREIGER:   Good for you.
MARGESSON:   Yes, yes.  The climate for Leftists in the academy right now is not one where you want to run around and tell people who you voted for.
TREIGER:   [laughing]
MARGESSON:   So, I guess for me the struggle is that I can’t separate the policy from the character maybe as easily as you can.  And we may just not agree on that point, that I would not vote for someone who offended me deeply.
SENGENBERGER:   But he doesn’t seem to offend Marv, who is, himself, a Buddhist who follows these precepts.
MARGESSON:   Does he do things that offend you, Marv? Like you’re —
TREIGER:   Well, sure he does.  Sure, he does.  I think some of them are, I think some things he does, he ~~ well, here’s his strength: I believe that this man is basically not ideological, that he’s very pragmatic, and that it’s shaped by a kind of business outlook, pragmatic and business-like, and that he trusts, through his experience, his instincts and his intuition.  And when you do that, and when you’re willing to kind of really trust them and just open your mouth and, you know, talk before crowds of thousands of people without a prompter and tweet because something comes to you, that there is going to be, a certain amount of the time, that the dark side of that comes up, which is impulsivity.  In other words, you’re going to be impulsive when you thought you were intuitive.  And on those occasions, he makes mistakes and some of them are really, like, cringe-worthy, there’s no doubt about it.  So, you know, what can I say?
SENGENBERGER:   [chuckling] Okay.  Well, on that note, let’s take a break for our top of the hour break and when we return here on 710 KNUS, we’ll dive into some more.  Get into, I know Marv wanted to talk about the Access Hollywood tape —
MARGESSON:   So do I. [chuckling]
SENGENBERGER:   [chuckling] And so does Rob.  We’ll dive into that right at the beginning of the next hour here on 710 KNUS.  With Dr. Rob Margesson, Regis University Associate Professor of Communication and Dr. Marv Treiger, retired psychotherapist and a Buddhist teacher here on 710 KNUS.  We’ll also open up the phones, (303) 696-1971.  Don’t go anywhere.
[PODCAST 42:54]
[End of 1st Hour]
The Jimmy Sengenberger Show
Dr. Marvin Treiger, Prof. Rob Margesson (1st Hour)
November 24, 2018