Friday, April 30, 2010
Thursday, April 29, 2010
"...The projections show that by 2050:
•Nearly one in five Americans will have been born outside the USA vs. one in eight in 2005."
That's twenty percent by my math. I love it!
I spent some time (not enough!) working in Hawai'i and I was so impressed by that multicultural society. The people in our office there and the workers out in the field (construction) were descended from every nation. You probably won't notice it as much when you vacation in the islands. You're there to have fun, not do a sociological study, but if you have a chance to simply live there for a short time, you'll see how well a multicultural society works and plays. It's great! And if you're not too full of yourself, those you come into contact with will forget that you're a dumb haole and welcome you...
The link above is sort of flaky...I hope it will work for you. I tried it a few minutes ago and CWS said the document no longer existed; yet it does. I'm looking at it. I Googled 'Bible and Immigrants' to find it and it was under Church World Service. That should get it for you...
Anyway, it's somewhat lengthy but right on target. And to be honest, those who call themselves Christians should be confronted with this if they ever speak negatively towards immigrants...legal or illegal. Educate them. As Christians we have a mandate to care for the alien among us. End of story. There are no Biblical loopholes here.
Good stuff in here...
And just off the top of my head came this thought. Relevant to something I'm sure...I want to know just how many CEO's are in jail for hiring illegal immigrants? That should be simple enough to answer. Just count them for me.
And another odd thought...how long does it take for a foreign citizen to make it through our citizenship application and actually step on American soil legally? Well, for those from the Philippines, it's just a shade over 24 years. You really need to start planning when you're about 1 year old. Most of the other nations are not as bad, but darn close. So for those who simply say...'enter legally' you're ignorant of the facts. Employers tempt illegals with impunity. They never go to jail and there are always new employees to choose from...fresh from the border. And for those who say that the illegals only bring drugs and violence...they come to America because this is where the customers are. Duh! Don't you understand anything at all? I better stop...I'm getting mad.
How did I get to this page? Well, it was a really odd combination of thoughts. One, I saw the words South Carolina with a description of the beauty of the state; much as Nance described it. Two, I saw the words Shrimp and grits. Heavenly! It's certainly one of my favorite dishes and unavailable in my part of the world. We had a great shrimp and grits dinner about 12 years ago. We were in Charlotte NC one night during a business trip and I think that was the last one we had...sigh! Third, I read about the fact that South Carolina has no money for mental health. And wished I could tell the good doctor that wrote this piece, that South Carolina is not alone in their neglect of mental patients. California lead the way back when ronnie reagan was our governor and closed all of the state mental hospitals. Since the sky didn't fall when he did that, every politician in the nation took that as a signal that they could safely eliminate mental health from budgets. Now, thanks to ronnie, every state in this nation is in denial. Mental illness does not exist. So there!
We are going to be driving around Chico this morning with Alicia in an attempt to educate us as to which areas of town are more desirable when it comes time to move. Our farm days are over and we are looking for a smaller place with xeriscape plantings instead of lawn. Concrete is nice. (did you know that they make permeable concrete and water passes right through it? Yes, they do!) I'm really obsessed with lawns; I hate them with a passion! If we find a house we like and it has a lawn…it's coming out.
Speaking of obsessions; I read the other day that there is a good chance that Facebook will replace the internet…as we know it. I can see that happening. A year or so ago, I created a Facebook group named 'Orland'. It was done on a whim after I searched Facebook for such a group and found none at all. It only took a minute to create the group and I already had a good photo for the logo, an old photo of the Orland Arch that I had Photoshopped. This morning, I was browsing through my list of 'Groups' in an attempt to do some light housekeeping. If you are using Facebook, you will find that you collect groups easily and most groups stagnate and die. A Facebook fact of life. Anyway, there I was, looking at this photographic logo and wondering why it looked so familiar? I opened up the group page and found that there were 381 members. I read all of the comments and was ready to leave when I looked over on the left hand side and there was my name; Administrator and Creator. What? I had created the page a year and half ago and it had grown all by itself…like a creeping fungus. Yikes! I can't kill it, there are 381 people involved here. Can I just turn my back on it? I will. I'm going to pretend I never saw it.
That experience makes me wonder about all of the groups on Facebook. How many are accidents like mine? How many groups are there, in total? I know that I created two of them; the second one was for the Plant Barn and I never got around to finishing it up with a logo. In the meantime my daughter created her own Facebook page for her business, The Plant Barn, and it has a nice logo and about 180 members/fans. My version of the Plant Barn has 4 and I have no idea who they are?
Facebook does have its detractors. It creates a 'hate' response in some people and there is no arguing with them. But, more and more businesses have found Facebook to be a great tool for advertising and public relations. And it's free. And if you use the Privacy controls, it becomes a great place for a family to share their photos and their thoughts. Make appointments. Keep up on family news and events. With the privacy controls in place, no one else will see you or bother you. The more I think about it….in another year, Facebook just might take over the internet.
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
I went online to see what I could see regarding the Anti-American bill in Arizona. Nothing much. It's a whole lot of what was said yesterday and no end in sight. So many people simply don't get it; it has less to do with immigrants and more to do with our own loss of freedom. Why do these people believe that the police will never use that law for evil purposes? The police are just like the rest of Americans; some good and some bad. It's the bad ones we need to worry about and to give all of them such far reaching power is scary and definitely less than patriotic. You say we can trust them to do the right thing every time? Really? Why would you believe that? It has never happened before. Some of the police will always abuse power; it's what they do. The American patriots of the 1700's would roll over in their graves to see such a law passed, a law moving us ever closer to fascism.
I need to renew my membership in the ACLU…they are going to need some help with this.
Monday, April 26, 2010
Let me try and understand; the Party of No just said that they don't want to debate...and the reason is? I guess the Republican now love the banks. Just a guess of course.
Oil spill now covers 1,800 square miles.
Officials say it will be months before they can stop the flow of oil.
What is it about offshore oil drilling that the oil companies don't understand? And why don't we demand the maximum in safety before they drill? What was their plan for this disaster? Most industries have to come up with a plan for the unexpected and yet these people seem to be at a loss as to how to do anything about it. Their first statements indicated that they had it under control and damage to the environment was going to be minimal. Doesn't look like that was the truth.
Now imagine this scenario…hurricane season begins in June and suddenly we have a hurricane ripping around Florida and into the Gulf; where the oil gathers and waits for its arrival. Now that oil becomes part of the storm surge and is spread even further, including inland as far as the storm surge goes. Isn't that lovely?
And we aren't the only nation facing disasters'; Brazil, one of the most important nations in the world these days, is looking at oilfields that are over 4 miles deep to the seabed and then further, past a layer of molten and flowing salt before oil is struck. Do you see any danger in that? The oil company, Petrobras, says they have it handled and the public doesn't need to worry and do silly things like 'protest'. Of course no one has ever drilled in these conditions before but it looks good on paper. What's to worry about?
I was just reading where Sheriff Joe Arpaio, one of Arizona's leading Republican intellectuals, has declared that getting rid of all of those pesky brown skinned folks will open up jobs for the good citizens, the white ones. Really? Those white folks better load up on plenty of PF 100 sun block because it's murder out there in the fields! Perhaps someone should take the time to count the number of new jobs that open up and how many people fill them. It could be interesting. (People like Joe have been making this senseless argument since time began…and it doesn't compute. Ever.)
And then Good Citizen K explains the Governor...well, no. I doubt that anybody can. But he does point out some important things about Arizona...
"no Republican member of the Arizona House or Senate has an Hispanic surname, and if the vote went along party lines...let's just say that if the Republicans could not attract a single Hispanic vote for a bill aimed at undocumented Hispanic workers, it ought to be newsworthy. Or maybe it just goes without saying..."
There's something wrong. I think our family is cursed in some way. No, not a genuine curse delivered by a genuine witch or wizard,; just your ordinary, run of the mill curse. You see, my sister, properly raised in a liberal environment has the terrible 'bad luck' to be living in Arizona at this time. Her husband, daughter, son in law and granddaughter all face this Arizona curse. And as for the rest of the family, we're stuck in California. We're cursed, I tell you! My sister and family have to wake up each morning with the knowledge that Jan Brewer is running the state, while we have to face Arnold Schwarzen-something each day. And both of our states are failures when it comes to education and job creation. We're broke; ruined by the tax cuts for the rich Republicans. Here we sit, waiting for the 'trickle down' promised by the Republicans, a trickle that never seems to make it to our level. Cursed.
I just realized that my sister and family have an additional cross to bear; Senator John McCain. True, I have the burden of Wally but he's only a Representative and can usually be ignored. But how do you ignore McCain; he's flipping faster than a Chinese acrobat. Whatever he was for yesterday he is against it today. But…praise the Lord! The best decision he ever made was to choose Sarah Quittypants to be his running mate. Just imagine him as President. I know…you can't. I tried and I couldn't do it either.
Saturday, April 24, 2010
My comment is as follows...
As a citizen of the scarlet center of California; that part where agriculture is king, we have to put up with fools who parrot that 'lazy citizens' talk all of the time. There's a reason that people don't get jobs picking fruit or harvesting whatever...it takes a good deal of skill and no farmer will risk his crop to rank amateurs. But for simple minded politicians like Mr. Bauer, the truth is better left alone especially when the alternative to the truth gets the electorate all fired up with indignation. And no farmers will correct the fool; they're republicans as well!
I was going to put the comment in the Comment section of the blog and go about my business...but I couldn't find a Comment section. I looked everywhere and then decided to simply write about it here instead.
I am not well acquainted with S. Carolina. Around 2002, I drove from one branch office in Charlotte down to another office in Atlanta. Like most of the southeast, it's lush and green everywhere you look. But we were on the interstate and so my memories of S. Carolina were that it's the fireworks capital of the nation; there are places to buy fireworks, year round, at just about every off ramp. Also at the off and on ramps were Waffle Houses and usually one on each side of that particular exit. Third, I've never seen so many billboards on an interstate and I'm talking about the biggest ones I had ever seen! But, like most states, the view from the interstate is always misleading. I do remember saying that when I retired and stopped traveling for a living, the south was the place I wanted to revisit first.
This is a 'no brainer' for me...I don't have to comment at all on the idiocy that calls itself the Tea Party. I don't have to write anything about the foolishness of those who call for for further cuts in taxes. Mr. Friedman, a brilliant writer, owner of a Pulitzer Prize to prove that he is a brilliant writer, has laid it all out here and very clearly. I'll go have another cup of tea and try and think of something to add here, though I doubt that I can.
Friday, April 23, 2010
"I know there are no Republicans any longer because everyone has started to call themselves conservatives, independents, and all sorts of things, anything except a Republican: The rats have fled the sinking ship.
But don't worry, we know who you are because all you have to say is 'Ronald Reagan' and we just watch for the folks who eyes begin to water...."
As you can see, I've been browsing again and I found this well written blog. Good documentation as well. Facts are such bothersome things!
"'We're not targeting any particular group,' said Levi Bolton, a retired police detective. 'Cops are not here to do these things to you.'"
Right. If you look like an French illegal alien we will stop you and investigate. Or Polish. Or Spanish. Or Dutch. Or Ethiopian. etc. etc.
Thursday, April 22, 2010
I was reading an article, in last week's Economist, about innovation in health care and it was filled with good news. GE scientists, in their Bangalore India research center, have come up with a highly portable ECG machine. It only uses four leads and has a built in printer that prints the results ala credit card receipt style. It works on batteries as well as conventional power and it fits in a backpack. Cost? About $800. Compare that to the much larger old style at $2,000. Then there was story about a heart surgeon, Dr. Devi Shetty, whose flagship hospital in Bangalore, has over 1,000 beds. They do heart surgery there. Over 600 per week. That's between himself and his staff of 40 cardiologists. His staff has acquired world class expertise because of this and the cost of open heart surgery has dropped to about $2,000 as compared to close to $100,000 in our heart hospitals (average of 160 beds) Dr. Shetty has also come up with a health insurance plan that covers 2.5 million people for an average of 11 cents a month. His family owned medical group shows an after tax profit of 7.7% compared to 6.9% in American private hospitals.
In the meantime, I found this list of rumors about our own insignificant health care bill that was recently passed…in the country with the 'world's best health care!'
- Requires patients to be implanted with microchips. (No, it doesn't.)
- Cuts benefits for military families and retirees. (No. The TRICARE program isn't affected.)
- Exempts Muslims from the requirement to obtain coverage. (Not specifically. It does have a religious exemption, but that is intended for Old Order Amish.)
- Allows insurance companies to continue denying coverage to children with preexisting conditions. (Insurance companies have agreed not to exploit a loophole that might have allowed this.)
- Will require 16,500 armed IRS agents to enforce. (No. Criminal penalties are waived.)
- Gives President Obama a Nazi-like "private army." (No. It provides a reserve corps of doctors and other health workers for emergencies.)
- "Exempts" House and Senate members. (No. Their coverage may not be as good as before, in fact.)
- Covers erectile-dysfunction drugs for sex offenders. (Just as it was before the new law, those no longer in jail can buy any insurance plan they choose.)
- Provides federal funding for abortions. (Not directly. But neither side in the abortion debate is happy with the law.)
Are some people really that stupid? Why, yes they are…
Regarding that first rumor; I want to be implanted with a microchip! I said it immediately after 9/11 when I had to haul out my ID twenty times before I boarded the plane. I have said it ever since I had to recount my entire medical history to every nurse or doctor I came across during my medical travails. Microchips are not to be feared and I will be first in line if our medical profession ever got smart enough to offer them. But that will never happen. We're lucky they stopped writing prescriptions on clay tablets just a few years ago.
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
Around the country, state officials are working to implement the new health care bill while its foes are seeking to undo it.
Just days following the passage of the controversial bill, a group of 13 attorneys general —12 Republicans and one Democrat—filed a lawsuit taking issue with the constitutionality of the individual mandate provision, the requirement that most citizens purchase health insurance or pay a penalty.
What if the citizens of those states would prefer that their tax money be spent on more worthwhile projects? Did anyone ask? How many $millions will be spent to stroke the egos of these state attorneys?
Tuesday, April 20, 2010
On Thursday, the House passed this legislation that would extend for two months federal unemployment benefits, flood insurance programs, increased payment rates to Medicare providers and COBRA health care premium assistance. It was then sent to the President, who signed it into law later that night.
Rep. Wally Herger voted NO......
What a guy! Always looking out for the welfare of his constituents... Oops Did I say 'welfare'? I meant 'good'.
I'm pretty happy this morning. My daughter has sold two more of my art works. That makes three now! Not your usual art, as they are gourds that have been carved and painted, but these are not decorative gourds. They don't have another use, such as being a bird house or a Christmas decoration. They are useless for that, though I suppose you could say that they would make a good paper weight. I have filled them with sand and that was done to make sure they stay in one place. An empty gourd is as light as a feather and easily moved by a breeze. And none of these art works are the same; I find what pleases me within the gourd and then I bring it out. I know that sounds like a cliché, but I can't describe it any other way; that's how it works! Now I have to ask my daughter if she will show a few of my smaller works, canvases this time.
Darn! It just struck me…I don't know which ones sold. Oh, well, I'm not supposed to become attached to them.
I have an awful lot of fun here just checking out the 'Pants on Fire' section.
The St. Petersburg Times has done it right! Wouldn't it be great if all the news gathering organizations would do exactly the same thing and then submit all of the data they had gathered to one national Fib-Ometer? Imagine politicians choosing their words very carefully. How very cool!
Monday, April 19, 2010
The Station Agent. A great little movie in my opinion. I'm sorry, honest…I didn't mean to say 'a great little movie'. It should simply be 'a great movie'. A Freudian slip on my part? A simple movie that takes you away from the chaotic world of our everyday lives and despite some tension in the movie world of 'Fin', you can relax for awhile as there's not a terrorist in sight nor are there any guns. No car chases. One death, but that's from old age. Only one scary scene. No politicians. I already said that? Right…no terrorists!
Friday, April 16, 2010
We paid our taxes. Paid our dues. We're as good Americans as we can be. Yippee! We paid a lot, even more than anticipated and that was an ouch. We have to pay quarterly and a slip up in that amount made for a much larger tax bill than we had planned on. But, we're not going ballistic over it. In the end, we're the ones responsible for the errors. We sign the returns. Upset? Yes. In general; intellectually we know that we pay a lot less than citizens in other countries. But then again, it's not about how much we pay but what value is received for our money. And that's where we stop being intellectual and become angry. Where do we direct our anger and how? Well, it's certainly not by joining up with the buffoons that make up the so called 'Tea Party'. I'm just guessing, but I like to think that there are some bright people who joined the Tea Party because it was a good vehicle for their anger. I'm afraid it no longer is and I would bet that the smart folks have all gone by now. The Tea Party is no longer a 'grass roots' movement, if it ever was one, and I suspect that it was carefully orchestrated from the very beginning. Most of these peoples you see on television, with their signs and costumes, have been duped. Hoodwinked.
Whenever the Tea Party gathers, we see and hear a lot about States' Rights and a shrinking of the Federal government. Reduce taxes or pay none at all. And it's when I hear that stuff that I feel like putting a dunce cap on these jokers and making them stand in the corner. Forever. For instance, I was reading about the disaster in Rhode Island; flooding everywhere. And the President declared it a Disaster, which opens up all sorts of federal aid to those who have been damaged by the flooding. That's a good thing because the state is already close to bankruptcy and would be hard pressed to help their own citizens. Now in the Tea Party Perfect World, those citizens, those victims…would remain victims. Better that than allowing a 'Socialist' government to help them. And since no one was paying taxes in that Perfect World, there was never going to be any help for them anyway. The police and fireman, except for the volunteers, would all be gone. The guys that used to be in charge of pumps and rowboats would have moved on to other kinds of work; work that paid.
The Rhode Island disaster becomes worse. Since tax revenues have been down for quite awhile and because the citizens of Rhode Island don't like paying taxes, the infrastructure was already damaged long before the flooding began. 57% of the bridges in the state are structurally deficient and heavy trucks are not allowed to use them. There is a $400 million dollar hole in next year's budget. Sewage treatment plants were damaged by the flood waters. Unemployment at 12.7% is the nation's third highest. Yikes!
What would have happened if the corporations had been paying their fair share of taxes in Rhode Island? And the citizens? The population of the state was 1,050,788 in 2008. Let's say everyone scratched together an extra ten bucks each year and had the state use it for repairs. $10,507,880. That's additional money to use on top of what was already budgeted. And then the corporations would have to pay their fair share. Which is bound to be a whole lot more than they are paying now.
I could go on and on with this scenario, but why? The Tea Party, with its numbers now made up of fanatics, aren't interested in logic. Talking about it just wastes my time and theirs.
Thursday, April 15, 2010
Today is tax day for some. There are some 40+ percent of working Americans that won't pay taxes this year because they no longer make enough money to be eligible to pay. That's what happens when unions are busted. And the economy suffers from it. It's all so basic and yet even Henry Ford, a villain to be sure, understood that the workers have to be paid enough so that they can buy the products they are manufacturing. If the average worker couldn't buy his cars, who would? And here we are, close to, or right at 100 years later and the lesson has to be taught again.
I don't admire much of anything that Henry Ford said or did, mainly because of his virulent anti-Semitism, but his economic lessons were proven in the workplace every day. The employee parking lot at his plant was filled with his product and that had to make that 'capitalist' happy every time he looked out of his office window.
I'm also not much of an admirer of union leadership. But after all of these years of living, almost 70 years, including some thirty plus years as a union carpenter (I'm proud of that) I can tell you that they are a necessary evil. And I'm not much of an admirer of CEO's, CFO's and others of their ilk. And it is their behavior that makes unions necessary. Bad behavior from a union? That's the fault of the membership. Bad behavior from a corporation? That's the fault of the stock holders.
"About 1 in 10 Americans or thirty-two million citizens, roughly the entire population of Canada, don’t have health insurance. As a country, is it acceptable for us to walk away from them?"
I don't think so. And this article lays out all the good reasons to take care of all of our citizens. Less one reason...and that is because it is the right thing to do.
Yes, I'm a bleeding heart liberal and proud of it.
Weird! I just finished posting some comments about the KevinMD website and afterward I scrolled down to the bottom of the article listings and there was a familiar name; Dr. Schroll. I saw her three times last year while I was trying to get a handle on my back and hip pain. She worked in the same group that I use and her sub-specialty was acupuncture. I was eager to try anything to stop the constant pain and acupuncture by an MD seemed quite logical. It still does. I wish I could tell you that it worked for me, but it didn't; although I did have some relief after each of the sessions.
She was very pleasant and I felt that she cared about me...but I had no 'face time' with her. It was obvious to me that she was being stretched thin. It was quite frustrating and now I see the same thing happening with the PA-C that is my primary in this same medical group.
The future, in medical care, does not look good.
I subscribe to this weekly newsletter and have found some very interesting articles on it. As someone who is aging...and not all that gracefully, medical information seems much more important to me than ever before. The time I spent working in the medical field was almost 50 years ago and my medical knowledge has shrunk accordingly. Some things never change and so my Anatomy & Physiology knowledge is still okay, but my clinical and pharmacy skills are non-existent...so I use Google a lot. And to be truthful, I am still baffled by this article. I don't know that any of my doctors use the internet in their practice. How would they have time to Google anyone? Not that I would mind if they did search me out; there is precious little to discover. I know, I've tried. Unethical? Not even close.
This same newsletter takes note of the fact that Twitter helps to spread medical mis-information. I'm not surprised. Twitter does the same thing that the old fashioned gossip over the back fence did. And what would help to curb this? More information from doctors. Doctors like Dr. Kevin Pho who know how to use the internet. He even Tweets! (I wish he were my doctor)
"Tea Party supporters are wealthier and more well-educated than the general public"
This is something that defies logic. If they are so well educated, why in the world would they keep throwing the 'socialist' label around as if they knew what they were talking about. Didn't they have to go to high school and learn about different forms of government? Apparently not, yet here they are taking part in polls and declaring themselves to be 'well educated'. And here's the odd part; as a majority, they went to public schools and according to these same polls, they send their children to public schools. If I were to use their twisted logic, public schools are about as 'socialistic' as anything they accuse the President of...
Polls! They are just as accurate as anything the mainstream media puts out...including the NYT.
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
I love being first! (Does anybody really care about these numbers? Not including politicians?)
The bill directs police to determine the immigration status of noncriminals if there is a 'reasonable suspicion' they are undocumented. Immigrant rights groups say it amounts to a police state.
I suppose you might even agree with this law if…you believe that police would use 'reason'. All this does is give far too much power to the police who have too much power to begin with. This is an open invitation for abuse and a direct violation of the Constitution. And it's a direct assault against a specific group; Hispanics. You won't see any illegal Russian immigrants being asked to provide documents. Or Chinese. Or dozens of other nationalities. Arizona should be ashamed. And Arizonans scared. By the way, that 'noncriminal'? That's you and me.
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
Monday, April 12, 2010
"The facts show that not only are unions good for workers, but that they actually help economic growth by insuring that more Americans are able to have buying power by spreading the wealth more evenly to all Americans:"
If that's socialism, I'll take all I can get. But it's not; it's good old capitalism when both employer and employee have a stake in making a profit. The company I retired from was all union and were so in every state where we had a presence, including the southeastern states. We were the largest specialty subcontractor in the US and 100% employee owned. We could have easily been non-union but chose not to because we dealt in quality and performance. Unions provided the workers that could provide us those things. We competed for contracts against non-union firms and won them time after time because of the quality of our labor force. We all contributed to the economy...and that's a bad thing, how?
It's time for the second cuppa and then a browsing of the net again.
Where do I begin? The past few days have me reeling from assaults upon my intelligence. The lies and half truths that have been coming from the Right are enough to make my head explode! Since I valued my head, I decided to hunker down for awhile; at least until the current storm of stupidity had passed.
Can you believe some of this? Right wingers from Virginia celebrating the Civil War and singing 'Dixie'. Sarah Quittypants declaring climate change to be 'snake oil science'. The Right wing declaring war on the Supreme Court nominee that doesn't even have a name. One headline after another with not one fact ever checked…Main stream news? How do those 'journalists' make it past their mirrors in the morning? And Sarah; doesn't she ever stop and think about what kind of legacy she will be leaving for children and grandchildren? Does she really want to be remembered as the political clown of the early 21st century? And when will the 'South' get over it? They were simply traitors and they lost the war they started. Yes, they started it! A fact overlooked by so many. In the meantime, they have been assimilated into the America of today…except for those politicians who find it advantageous to see how close to treachery they can come while exciting the simple minded. The quiet citizens of the South need to speak up. Don't even get me started on the likes of Limbaugh and Beck; I love our liberties, but these two, and more than a few others, make me think fondly of sedition laws. Again, this is where MSM fails us by never pointing out their lies.
I think I'll go hide again.
Saturday, April 10, 2010
It's been one of those mornings. It started with a great article about antidepressants from Mature Landscaping and then this one from Saul Friedman. After reading them, I have to wonder why anyone would go out of their way to support the pharmaceutical industry...but our legislators do. And so do an amazing number of our fellow citizens; those that fought long and hard against any health care legislation. What were they thinking? This is an industry that is crying out for more regulation, not less! It's too bad we had to buy a automobile manufacturer, GM. We would be better off nationalizing a pharmaceutical company...
Thursday, April 8, 2010
Wednesday, April 7, 2010
The adventures of the house sellers (that's us) has begun. The house was polished and everything put in its proper place; a rare event. Then, with the visiting grandchildren in tow, we left the house for a few hours so that the local realtors could make an inspection of this latest offering for the Multiple Listing service. After the tour was complete we met with our agent and she told us that all of the agents were impressed; mainly because they had just walked through half a dozen homes that were of lesser value and were in foreclosure. Ours stood out from the crowd. That's the good news and the bad news, as anyone looking for a bargain will find it easily and those looking for a nice home will see very few…except for ours of course.
Then, surprise, surprise…we had our first shoppers that very same day. We were told that the prospective buyers had a budget that was 40k under our asking price but were interested in viewing the house. We quickly cleaned up the small mess we had made in those few hours after the realtors tour and drove away so that the customers could look it over. After they had toured, we returned and waited for the phone call. Surely they loved the home and were willing to go over budget to get it, weren't they? Please? Apparently not that day. When the much anticipated phone call never materialized, we comforted ourselves with the thought/dream that the couple had decided to check on the status of their savings before committing and we would certainly hear from them tomorrow. That didn't happen either. But, in the afternoon, we heard back from our realtor and she told us that the 40k hurdle had been too steep for the couple. They loved the house…but no sale. But, that's not all bad as they could easily watch our home on the internet ads and make an offer later…when and if we reduce the price.
Okay, we're back to waiting and it could be a very long wait. A reality check tells us that it could be months of waiting. We need to get that firmly in our minds and prepare ourselves for it. And all during this waiting time, the house will have to be kept clutter free so that we can leave whenever a realtor calls to show it. Sigh…
Tuesday, April 6, 2010
"There is something shameful — dishonorable — about relegating these warriors to the background. We sent them into hell and we owe them, at the very least, our grateful acknowledgement of their tremendous efforts and boundless sacrifices. There is no way to do that without paying serious attention to them."
I said this would happen. I said it last year and the year before that. I've said it ever since the day I got out of the Navy. You can put all sorts of magnetic 'Support the Troops' ribbons on the back of the car but most people would rather not see the tragic aftermath of the war that we sent these children to fight for us. The stink of war surrounds these veterans and it offends the citizenry. It has happened after every war this nation has fought...I would be willing to bet that Revolutionary War soldiers were quietly ignored in their villages in the years after the war.
Sunday, April 4, 2010
Serves 16 to 20
For easy carving, look for a shank-end spiral-sliced ham. This recipe requires a large oven bag.
(7- to 10-pound) spiral-sliced, bone-in ham (see note)
(12-ounce) jar apple jelly
cup maple syrup
tablespoons whole-grain mustard
cinnamon stick , broken into rough pieces
teaspoon ground nutmeg
tablespoons unsalted butter
teaspoon dry mustard
1. PREPARE HAM Remove ham from packaging and discard plastic disk covering bone. Place ham in oven bag. Tie closed and cut 4 (2-inch) slits in top of bag. Transfer bagged ham to large roasting pan and let stand at room temperature for 1 1/2 hours.
2. BAKE HAM Adjust oven rack to lowest position and heat oven to 300 degrees. Bake ham until internal temperature registers 100 degrees, 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 hours.
3. MAKE GLAZE Meanwhile, bring apple jelly, 1/2 cup brown sugar, syrup, mustard, cinnamon and nutmeg to boil in saucepan. Reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring often, until mixture is very thick and reduced to 1/2 cup, about 45 minutes. Remove cinnamon pieces. Off heat, whisk in butter.
4. FINISH AND GLAZE Combine remaining brown sugar and dry mustard in small bowl. Remove ham from oven and let cool for 5 minutes. Increase oven temperature to 400 degrees. Cut open oven bag and roll back. Using a pastry brush, paint ham with glaze. Carefully press sugar mixture onto exterior of ham with hands. Return to oven and bake until dark brown and caramelized, about 20 minutes. Transfer ham to cutting board, loosely tent with foil, and let rest 15 minutes. Following step-by-step, carve ham. Serve.
"They are the most sought-after voters in California, the weather vanes who tell the rest of the state which way the wind is blowing. Technically they are 'decline to state' voters, because when they registered, they refused to side with any specific political party. They could just as easily be labeled 'the deciders.'"
I've been preaching this for a long time. If you want to end the power of the political parties, you have to break away and become an Independent Voter. It's working!
Yes, believe it or not, Evil Socialism got its start in Colonial times, in fact, Socialism was around during the time when our Beloved and Sacred Constitution was being written. And some of the Signers of the Declaration of Independence were 'Closet Socialists', spreading the Evil by their participation in Schemes to insert the Government into our daily lives. And Socialism remains with us today, even Stronger than it ever was. Another fact, we idolize those who practice Socialism…the American Fireman.
"Subscribers paid fire fighting companies in advance for fire protection and in exchange would receive a fire mark to attach to their building. The payments for the fire marks supported the fire fighting companies. If the protected building were to suffer a fire, only their fire fighting company would attend the call to extinguish the fire. Even if competitor fire companies were closer to the fire they would not do anything to prevent further damage or extinguish the fire. This brought the fire mark system into disrepute. Municipal and rural fire departments supported by local taxation became the more popular solution."
For Shame! But there is hope…we can mobilize in great numbers and convince our local leaders to disband the fire departments. We would save money and we would become free of the stink of Socialism! It would be the American thing to do. I'm getting all tearful just thinking about the lovely empty fire stations. And next, the police department!
A well written and very interesting take on the Tea Bag movement. It shows how emotions eclipse rational thought every time. Truth be told; we are all susceptible to this and our 'calm and studied' response to the Tea Baggers is rarely rational.
Friday, April 2, 2010
I made the mistake yesterday of commenting on a discussion where the Tea Party advocates had swarmed. There were close to 150 comments at the time I arrived and most were rabid attacks on anyone who dared to think. I read most of them and I suppose I didn't notice the blood in the water before I decided to dive in with a comment of my own. I tried 'reason' as my weapon of choice and was most polite, hoping that the use of reasoning would be a beacon for those wishing civil discourse. Silly me! I was vilified instantly and in the most foul language. The anonymity of the internet seems to bring out the worst in some people and in particular, those of the Tea Party persuasion.
What were they all up in arms about? The upcoming March of the Tea Party on April 15th. They have demonstrations planned all across the country and there was a rumor that Anarchists were planning on infiltrating their ranks and then causing a disturbance that would be seen on TV as being caused by the Tea Party; discrediting them before an audience of millions. Personally, I thought it was a neat idea but unlikely to succeed as the number of Anarchists is no match for the job. Even so, the commenters were all over the rumor and most were talking about how they were bringing their 'little friend' with them to the tax day demonstration. It was quickly evident to me that 'little friend' was a euphemism for a gun. Oh yes, they were also bringing their pit bulls. True!
Where do these people come from and why? I'm mystified and a little bit scared. Should I have a 'little friend' of my own? Nah! That would be stupid…
"religious fundamentalism may permanently damage the growth of a child's brain. The thinking goes like this: People with physical damage to their frontal cortex from an accident or medical issues tend to perform poorly in creative thinking. The underutilization of this area, particularly in early life, seems also to impede its proper development and stunt the growth of creativity. In short, fundamentalists may have trouble thinking outside the box."
Certainly one possible answer...
Thursday, April 1, 2010
Hmmmm? How very curious. Yes, $70+ million can buy a lot of weather
It's early in the AM and I can't sleep so naturally I turned to my weather forecast and the Wunderblogs. Doesn't everyone? Anyway, I found this most interesting article on the spread of misinformation and how it became an 'industry' in itself. And the same people who tried to discredit science concerning tobacco use, asbestos and CFC's are now hard at work trying to discredit those scientists working on Global Warming. That's what happens when major industries are threatened by science and so there is no end to the amount of money they will spend to defame and obstruct the truth.
Reading the article, I was surprised to see that the conflict over Global Warming started in 1988! 22 years ago and no end in sight.