I learned something today

...there is no opportunity or ability to do great things unless you undertake a big task.

I learned something today

Even though I grew up during the heyday of the animated TV Show South Park (a libertarian favorite), I never really watched it until after I turned 18.

Probably because my parents wisely did not want me to emulate the show's foul-mouthed child protagonists.

Anyone familiar with the show will know that there's always a part of the episode where one of the boys, Stan Marsh, will turn to the camera and say "I learned something today."

This is always a self-conscious (and perhaps self-deprecating?) way for the show's creators, Trey Parker and Matt Stone, to deliver their insight into current events.

Well the last two weeks, I've been whisked away into battle. On April 13, I delivered the keynote address at the Libertarian Party of Wisconsin's annual convention. I think it was very well received, and I felt like I delivered it well. I especially felt good about it considering that I wrote the whole damn speech that same morning.

Three days later, I had my very first jury trial, which I won, securing a "Not Guilty" verdict for my client on a Class G Felony Theft. I then I took a long weekend in the Twin Cities with my family.

And I guess I've come back to write to you fine people to say, through that experience "I learned something" in the same way that Trey Parker and Matt Stone illustrate through their character Stan Marsh. Not about the world, per se, but about life.

I specifically recall on the afternoon of Sunday April 14th. I had just driven back from the LP convention in Madison. The night before, I had given the speech, had a few drinks, gone to bed at a decent hour, but still woke up feeling exhausted.

I got in the car, got back home around noon, fully intending to get back to the mountain of trial prep that I knew I had waiting for me. Instead, I fell asleep on the couch for a few hours.

When I woke up, every fiber of my being was asking "why do I do this to myself?"

And as I was walking out the door, I had some kind of epiphany.

For all of his recent and terrible faults, Jordan Peterson was right when he said that the purpose of life was to find the heaviest boulder you can lift, and carry it up a big hill.

Meaning, in part, that there is no opportunity or ability to do great things unless you undertake a big task.

The thought steeled me to go into my office and spend six hours tediously editing pieces of jail phone calls and officer body camera footage into little trial exhibits.

And sitting in my office this week, trying to catch up on all the work that stacked up during my trial, that epiphany is the biggest moment that stands out to me from the last ten days.

Standing there, with my trial binder in my hands, staring at the washing machine in our mud room, on the way out the door, trying not to think of what I'd rather be doing that Sunday night.

It was all well and good, because I got into a battle with the District Attorney the next day about the clips during our final pretrial conference. If I had not edited the clips that night, the judge would not have been able to view them, and I would not have gotten to use them during the trial. I may not have won.

At any rate, it's all over and victory has been achieved. Now, I just need to find another boulder to carry up a hill.

Perhaps this eBook I wanted to have finished before the Convention...


I'm thinking I might do a trial recap on an episode of Vital Dissent.

If you'd like to watch my LPWI speech, you can find it below. I come in at about 58 minutes. I will be running it as an episode of Vital Dissent.

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