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A New Direction
The majority of SetonnoteS were political, but many were social,
dealing with changing trends, and some were more personal. There is much
to be learned walking alone along the edge of the Pacific; Nature is an
He's different from the self-help presenters. Rather than telling
you how you might achieve all of your heart's desires, Tolle explains
how you might achieve all of your heart's desires by understanding how
life and the universe work.
Cn U Rd Ths?
There were times when my mother thought I should go out and play,
but I was already having an adventure, in the pages of one of the myriad
books I devoured. One night I was caught reading Catch-22 under
the covers, but only gently berated...for laughing.
I was in the kitchen grinding coffee when I spilled a bunch onto the
counter. It wasn?t a huge mess. Just one of those all too common events
when you want to express your distress in a forceful if meaningless way.
Cowardice and confusion are an important glue in organized religion.
That?s why so many people go to church. They can always point to
hardship, and say, It was god?s will, while gossiping with like-mindeds
about how they victim probably deserved it.
Cost of a Ticket
I was driving back from my constitutional for the upteenth time over
the past five years on the same route. At some block or another I
noticed a police car parked on a side street. Shortly after I passed
the police car pulled out behind me.
Selling the Big Picture
Just as you can?t tell a book by its cover, deciding the appeal of a
film by its cast and crew or theater posters is nigh on impossible. I
ordered a film from Netflix based on the actress who won the 1944 Oscar
for best performance.
Those who are lazy refer to coincidence; those with a sense of
something more significant use the term synchronicity. When I see such
things, I?m usually prompted to at least chuckle.
The Stress Factor
With the psychiatric industry having followed their physical
brethren into the patter of flavor-of-the-month diagnoses, there has
ensued a marketable effusion of prescriptive chemicals that sublimate
the symptoms without touching their genesis.
I never said I was the sharpest knife in the drawer. Sometimes it
takes me a few moments to get what is obvious right away to the rest of
the world. Especially those who watch television and are plugged into
our petri dish culture.
I never thought of myself as a writer. A journalist, communications
consultant, and yeah, I write. Perhaps it is because I do so much
writing, or that it is so intrinsic to my waking hours. It?s certainly a
form of therapy; if I couldn?t write I?d explode.
We?re the Redcoats
I wonder if our enemies ? and I?m speaking for the Islamic
extremists; particular the Al Qaeda network, and the Taliban ? don?t see
the United States and our allies the way Old Hickory viewed the
What?s in a Name
Then along comes someone who describes himself as a devout Christian
who says the term is profane and offensive to Christians. He filed
paperwork with the U.S. Board on Geographic Names pushing the notion
that the name be changed to Mount Reagan.
So our brains are wired to various parts of our body, but there are
no wires connecting our minds to new ideas. Because we are hard-wired we
will always feel a sting if we are bitten by bee, but because we can
change our perceptions.
What Currency for Cure
She told me I was brilliant, that if anything could help him, it
would be that kind of talk. She asked me if I would be willing to
talking to him. I hesitated and let the conversation continue without
Relaxing in Fiction
My favorite is Rex Stout, who is best known for his more than 70
detective stories featuring Nero Wolfe. I have a coupla dozen of his
paperbacks, and have read them numerous times. As soon as I forget the
plot, they are fresh again for me.
The Gods Were Funnin?
I expect that at some point, instead of Jesus returning and walking
on water, there?s likely to be a huge Bacchanalian celebration as the
string-pullers ? too humble to call themselves gods ? will descend from
the mount, laughing their heads off.
Certainly everyone has a right to behave as they wish, and indeed,
many of the LGBT group have faced discrimination. They still do, but
happily it seems to be on the wane, in both social and legal terms.
The Reign of Drug Terror
The bottom line problem with illegal drugs is that making them
illegal jacks the bottom line for production and sale through the roof.
The illegal drug trade would be reduced to a bad memory if we
decriminalized the stuff.
Dangerously Dumbed Down
After a coupla centuries of elections, you?d think maybe we?d be
attracting better and smarter candidates, but instead the people running
for office seem to be less conscious and more boorish year after year.
Generic Health Care
Companies were selling a product to treat human heart conditions
priced at $30 a pop. Not much in today?s world when most people are too
insured to care. But big pharma was also selling the same drug to cure
an ailment in sheep for only $2 a dose.
It was a truly beautiful site. Her legs barely needed the sand
beneath the waves to hold her motion. Her grace was flawless, to the
point that it expressed her joy with her marriage to her physical
The Merit of Work
Organizations are pushing Congress to force businesses to hire
Americans. You?d think most American companies wouldn?t need either a
carrot or a stick, at least when their fellow citizens were at least as
competent as the competition.
Protest and Prayer
It?s important that peace and justice be part of everyone?s
awareness. It?s not clear that protest demonstrations ? especially those
that disrupt people?s lives ? are effective in achieving that awareness.
Schools are the victims of parents who don?t know enough to care,
children who can?t vote, politicians who don?t fund education or support
system reform, unions who put members? dues ahead of schooling.
Not About Race
Sorting people on the basis of gender has some logic to it in
certain situations ? so long as it?s not an issue of equality? but to
discriminate on the basis of skin color falls beneath contemptibly
Five Billion Over
We?re all in this together, men and women, and if we don?t start
getting our roles right ? we don?t even offer mutual respect today ?
then we won?t come to grips with the burgeoning crisis of
over-population, and war may seem like a practical option.
Just Be Fair
Courtrooms should not be casinos. Courtrooms are where people should
go for justice. So if someone is injured in some way, they should be
made whole and then given a little something for being put out. It
should not be a lottery.
Toying with Security
These people were trying to slaughter innocents by the dozens at
least. But more important ? and it turned out they didn?t need to kill
anyone to do it ? they announced that they were taking the war to the
Healthy Health Care
There?s so much that could be done easily to make Americans
healthier ? much healthier; quickly ? that it underscores the degeneracy
of our leadership, at both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue, over the past
The gummint needs to stand up to these cretins whom they?re supposed
to regulate, and enforce the public?s right to quality service, whatever
their venue. After all, that?s why we elect them and pay their salaries.
It?s not that I don?t appreciate people growing my food as near
to naturally as possible, especially without unnecessary chemicals.
It?s more than fashionable. It respects the Earth and
Mother Nature, if that doesn?t sound too high-fallutin?.
Private Time with God
I would think that any serious god would want the relationship to be
personal. And anyone serious about themselves would act inward, not
outward, on their beliefs. That, after all, is where any true dialogue
Arrogant Telephone Types
After the real Ma Bell was broken up by government order into a
bunch of regional Daughter Bells, there was a settling out period when
consumers seemed to be getting hosed less. But now the dirty end of the
stick is poking us in the eye again.
The Dating Game
A friend called the other day, despairing the difficulty in finding
someone he would like to take into his arms, look into his eyes, kiss,
and keep going. It was more than lust. He wanted someone to actually
There are very few enterprises that can maintain their edge after
more than a generation or two. That's why Thomas Jefferson suggested
that in order to stay healthy, let alone sharp, a country needs a
revolution every twenty years.
Such a Deal
One has to expect that there are going to be more and more of these
opportunities you can't afford to turn down. There are going to be
increasing numbers of desperate people who will be tempted to put down
their last bit of cash on a last chance to make ends meet, to bail out
of the crisis.
No, this isn't pointing a scarlet finger at free-wheeling sex. The
problem is inherent in the culture and a lack of education and
consciousness, and it is endemic across much of the southern hemisphere.
Of course there are some true leaders in Washington, but
unfortunately most of the people on Capitol Hill are focused exclusively
on their re-election and the future of our nation has slipped silently
off their radar screen.
If the news media and the cops who feed their information know that
these people are running criminal enterprises ? enough so they can say
it in print and not be sued for libel ? why aren?t they in prison?
Tony?s Top Ten
And ten, require 18 months of public service for every citizen over
18 years old. Our country needs to come together. Let?s start by getting
to know it, by putting in personal time to benefit the common weal.
Sign$ of the Times
There are some P.I.s for quality products but most tend to be for
lower rung items, or neo-scams. Some of them sound like the emails from
Nigeria promising you a zillion bucks if you put up just $20,000 in
A Chinese-American man persuaded his father to go shopping with him
in Oakland. The father, an immigrant who lived in San Francisco, was
leery because of the image of crime in that city. The son assured him
that this was a safe area. By all accounts, it was, in fact, safe...for
The Federal Couch
The Association for Simplistic Solutions has announced plans to
offer free counseling for the United States Congress. At a press
conference last week, the Washington chapter of ASS said it would
provide training for our elected representatives for the purpose of
getting themselves off their useless butts.
Chop Wood, Draw Water
The book was particularly valuable to me because I knew nothing of
Eastern religion or the Tao. So having been raised in semi-Calvinist New
England, for example, the notion of simplicity was adverse to what I had
learned in my first thirty years. Nor had I heard about the ability to
But the Patient Died
It?s akin to our national leaders and the shill economists in their
pockets who are trumpeting our economic recovery. Maybe they think that
Wall Street is the recovery. Because it certainly ain?t happenin? on
Hungry for a Fix
It?s not like I scream into the phone that I it now. I control
myself on the phone. I know the end is near. I?m grateful. His booker
calls me back the day before the appointment and confirms. They don?t
want the time wasted if I can?t make it.
Life Imitating Art
Anyway, this consultant thought I would be great for her wealthy and
powerful clients, which was very exciting. Until over the next three
days she failed to respond to emails and phone messages. The about-face
was so stunning, it almost didn?t hurt.
The broad brush also applies to all the people who get health
insurance coverage through their employers but aren?t dinged for smoking
cigarettes or drinking too much alcohol. Hundreds of thousands of these
self-abusers get a break that the rest of us have to pay for.
An unSpecial Election
The people in our country lazy, bored, and/or furious over our
government and our elections process. They are outraged that whomever
they vote for turns out to be a shnook, usually selling their political
souls to special interests who fund their re-election campaigns.
Success in Iraq
There was no honest reason to invade Iraq.
They had no weapons of mass destruction, were enemies of Al
Qaeda not they?re friends, and they had no role in the Nine-Eleven
attacks. Nor could they in any way be construed as a threat to the
This Ain?t T-Ball
Obama?s speech to the nation was a boy who cried wolf. After his
fourth pointless trip to the Gulf to capture some news coverage, he
called the nation to attention but it seems the purpose was only
political. That?s not right.
The Terrorist Open
My journalistic curiosity raised, I chatted up a pair of the
stalwarts sitting on their bikes by the ocean, enjoying a snack. I asked
them why they weren?t instead making sure all was running smoothly on
the California highways. Security, they told me.
A Time to Not Die
Then there?s the enormous expense of capital punishment. Here
in The Golden State Governor Schwarzenegger was contemplating
commuting all of the death sentences. It would save cash-strapped
California tens, maybe hundreds, of millions of dollars.
The GOP deserve this mishegaas. They should have distinguished
themselves from the fringees long ago but they put party before nation,
again. And as the old saw buzzes, when you lie down with dogs, you?ll
get up with fleas.
The news is full of efforts in many jurisdictions to demand ever
more draconian punishment of child molesters. But like Congress?
over-reaction to the crack cocaine crisis in the late Eighties, the
issue is being approached with more heat than light.
"Furious" Too Late
You may know the apocryphal story of a newspaper vender in his
enormous angry crowd storms down the avenue and out of site. Minutes
later, a man races up to the kiosk and out of breath demands, "Have
you seen a mob...I?m their leader."
The Ghost of Gray
They also knew that Tom
would have a tough row to hoe, because to win the GOP nomination for a
run at the top executive post in California, he would have to beat
billionaire Meg Whitman and near-billionaire Steve Poizner.
The Simple Truth
Hundreds of Americans have claimed to have fought in wars when they
hadn?t. And of course there are myriad cases of people claiming various
other experiences and accomplishments that if true must have been in
Our society needs to reduce the heroic quality we apply to some
anger, and then further explicate the condition so that angry behavior
eventually loses its cachet, and then its permission.
Error at the Top
So, um, like, you?d think something could be done about the
situation. That those powers-that-be the can overrule an ump?s decision
would say, Oops, sorry, he made a mistake, the runner was out, the
perfect game is officially perfect.
Actually, private is too nice a word. We?re talking special
interests who are literally buying the legislation and regulations they
need to make more money through the purchase of candidates through
It?s true that some people have taken advantage and cried wolf, but
mostly the wolves are real. It?s also true that the workplace isn?t as
fun as it used to be, and we can rue that, but it will be a lot more fun
when no one feels in actual jeopardy.
Memorial Day 2010
There seems to be some
confusion between the idea of showing our profound respect and gratitude
and the equally powerful tearful courage that calls on our better selves
to rise up against the carnage of strangers killing strangers.
Emanuel Should Go
Just because they weren?t going to pay him actual money doesn?t mean
that being on the commission wouldn?t have had value for Sestak. Of
course it would. If it hadn?t been worth anything, they wouldn?t have
offered it to him to get out of the race.
Yankee Go Home
We will look back and realize that our primitive inclinations toward
and contemporary investments in war have cost us greatly on many fronts.
Not only did we not protect ourselves, but we produced greater distress
and danger for the whole planet.
Bits & Pieces
If ever there was a too-little-too-late response...first because we
really need about ten times that number of be serious about closing off
the border, and second it looks like he responded only after there was
so much complaining in the media.
The purpose of incarceration is not just punishment but for the
convict to learn from his mistakes in a fashion that they wouldn?t be
repeated. The idea that conviction on a charge of murder should on its
own be the dividing line doesn?t make a lot of sense.
A Pall over Paul
Like the acorn falling not far from the oak, son Rand is following
in the tree-steps of his father, who made a lot of sense on occasion,
but on too many other occasions made less sense that Mork. Nanu-nanu,
Politics on the Cheap
But if there was some sort of electronic snafu and they called me
and told me I was the one, when I got done laughing I would tell ?em
they could save on the air fare and ask if they could wrap the food and
send it to me.
What is needed is leadership to produce clear and effective policy
that dictates action by law enforcement at the state and national
levels, separates the honest would-be citizens from the miscreants, and
restores meaning to the term American.
The Natives Are Restless
It?s tempting to leave analyses of Tuesday?s elections to the
dueling pontificators except that everyone palavering on the cable
channels are shills. My only constituents are Americans striving to get
America back on track.
This isn?t about religion. We need more community and less
separatism. Women should display themselves and men should behave
themselves. We should all be able to look into the windows of each
Bits & Pieces
So Durbin finally found his voice and charged, "They profit from the
fees, just like the big banks do. They don't come to their opposition
with clean hands. They have a profit motive in opposing this amendment."
Disunited We Fall
We need energy, we don?t want terrorists running around dangerous,
and having all of those non-citizens in our country is destructive of
the very notion of a nation, not to mention the economic drain, and the
Gag the Desperately Ignorant
All this hoo-hah about Kagan?s sexual preference has been carried to
the point of absurdity by the wing-nuts who care that she is or she
isn?t, but why? Are they worried that she would hit on Ginsburg or
Sotomayor rather than Scalia or Roberts?
Partying Too Hearty
Which raises the question of just what types of conduct are allowed
on college campuses these days, for surely the Charlottesville school,
otherwise esteemed for its pristine and haute soci??image, is not
alone in its problems.
The Beehive Sting
What must be worrying the socks off of the Republican leadership is
that in more purple states, if the extremists prevail and put up whacko
birther secessionist candidates, the voters are gonna tell them they've
gone too far.
Bits & Pieces
The spinning was of the same craven aroma we see here. The culture
minister of the Labour Cabinet must have been on drugs to come up with
this one: "This is no small victory for Gordon Brown, who deprived the
Conservatives of a majority."
As you might imagine, their messages have been all
applehood-?n-motherpie; you want to put your right hand over your heart
? instead of your wallet ? and look for the nearest flag.
The conditions atop these peaks are
beyond brutal. It?s why sherpas climb Everest every so often just to retrieve bodies. Those climbers
who survive the trek, whether or not they reach the peak, often lose
body parts to frostbite and suffer other injuries.
Bits & Pieces
Wing-nut response to the oil spill has exceeded expectations.
Michael Brown who screwed up the Hurricane Katrina response said he
thinks maybe the White House let it get worse so they could back-pedal
on their drilling plans.
Anyone truly paying attention ? those who are more interested in
facts than propaganda ? will have noticed that the alleged experts like
the Fed chairman couch their upward expectations with palpable
uncertainty. That?s a clue, folks.
The Failure of Success
As the two campaigns ? one to stop the flow and the other to
mitigate the environmental disaster ? are in high gear, there are
several aspects to the story that are going to have significant
ramifications for years to come.
Standing in the Light
There are some people on this planet who show up in our lives at an
oh-so-important moment. I think the fact of these angels, if you will,
and the awareness of them is a measure of consciousness. There are
Britain?s Sad Story
It won?t likely be enough. She may well have been a bigot, but Brown
came off as mean, and probably stunningly foolish ? and/or incompetent ?
for his words being caught on his own microphone.
The Grand (Brain) Canyon
Of course immigration is a critical issue. It is also one that
should be dealt with in Washington, and no doubt some of the rationale ?
and I don?t mean rational ? behind the measure was that Congress wasn?t
acting on the problem.
Justice in Democracy
Indeed, I would hope that we would come to a point in our
civilization ? it seems so far off at the moment ? when we would only
need campaign oversight entities like the FPPC for use as a help screen
Shorting is legal. But
investment companies are required to reveal all salient aspects of the
deals they promote; they have to tell potential investors about
significant risks, too. That's where Goldman Sachs is going to find
itself in deep doo-doo.
Bits & Pieces
U.S. and South Korea think the South Korean naval ship that went
down after an explosion that left dozens killed was probably hit by a
North Korean torpedo. That?s hardly good news, considering the level of
tensions between the two countries.
Brazil is the perfect tragic example. Their courts have just
approved building the world?s third largest dam in across the Amazon.
The profits, ostensibly to create more development, and the destruction
of the environment, will both be enormous.
Bits & Pieces
A new study shows that TV
weathermen are far less likely to believe in climate change than are
real experts. More than half say they don?t believe in global warming
and a quarter say they think it?s a scam.
Crumbling News Network
Our country won?t ever be able
to cope with the looming debt crisis or the crises in energy,
infrastructure, education, militarization, two wars...well, you know,
get America back on track...unless we know the facts; until we smarten
It?s too bad that the people with the truth aren?t being heard. The
media are controlled by economic interests that benefit from the status
quo. It really is us against them, America. We have the numbers and
could regain control with some quality leadership.
I?ve recently enjoyed some examples of excellent service. They were
so delightful, if unusual, that I thought to celebrate them to you as
examples of what a company or agency can do when they truly understand
their mission statement.
Digging to Death
They?re dumping the rocks and trees and bushes and whatever else
into the dells and glades and valleys which destroys the flora and
displaces the fauna. It is an environmental disaster.
So Yelp gets much of its content from people who want to gush or
gripe. Regrettably, these comments are as reliable as man-on-the-street
interviews, or maybe less so, since so much on the Internet is hype or
smash, often written anonymously.
Dunno if George Washington was a conservative, but he might have
been a symbol for them. When asked by his father if he had chopped down
the cherry tree with his new hatchet, he told him he could not tell a
lie. What a concept.
I would humbly suggest that they consider adding someone of reason,
dignity, intellect, integrity, humor, vision, and compassion. With those
qualities, the search committee would be looking outside of political
circles as well, of course.
Bits & Pieces
You might have heard about the
chief morale officer on the Titanic saying, "Not to worry. We?re just
stopping for ice." The line came to mind with the story that 29 state
Republican chairmen signed a letter saying Michael Steele was doing a
World Cop (4/9/10)
For goodness sakes, our government denies outright or "No
comments" or obfuscates about so much that doesn?t matter one has to ask
why they would trumpet their plans to assassinate someone.
Raising Educational Standards (4/8/10)
In some cases schools are just neo-penal detention centers, housing
children until their parents come home from work. In other societies,
students are inundated by fundamentalist socio-political dogma.
Poll This! (4/7/10)
Now a poll says that 87% of us believe that big money donors are
calling the shots. Well yeah, you might say, and the other 13% are
either big money donors, the recipients of their largesse or complete
Bits & Pieces (4/6/10)
On Friday the pope?s personal
preacher compared the uproar over the rape of children by priests, and
titularly sanctioned if not abetted by the Vatican, to the "more
shameful aspects of anti-Semitism." Un-huh.
Stopped the Presses (4/5/10)
Newspapers have been having a particularly difficult time, in part
because of the recession, but mainly because the society is shifting
from print to the Internet. So a number of newspapers, large and small,
have decided to go electronic only.
Unconditional on Condition (4/2/10)
In point of fact, any pol who doesn?t provide qualified support is
doing a disservice to the process of peace; what dim hopes for it there
are. Israel?s continuing to build more settlements on Palestinian land
is an affront to basic human decency.
Bits & Pieces (4/1/10)
It would be rude to refer the President of the United States as the
dipstick for the petroleum industry, but otherwise it?s hard to
understand how he could announce plans to drill, baby, drill off of much
of our coastline.
Fried Chicken Radio (3/31/10)
Ray was fired a couple of years ago and then brought back. But he
may be on his way out again because speaking of what he perceived as
degradation of the Oval Office he said, "Now we have people going in
there and eating fried chicken and throwing the bones over their
Monopoly on Contrition (3/30/10)
They hold a tearful news conference, sometimes the wife by their
side. Or maybe their publicist ? everyone should have one ? announces
solemnly that her widely-beloved client has checked herself into a
pricey rehab facility.
Reporting with Garnish (3/29/10)
Much of the fault lay with
President Obama and the Congress, but the media abetted this
incompetence by giving ink and air time to the fear-mongering neo-liths.
Typical of their game these days, they put up both sides, even when one
is telling outright lies.
Bits & Pieces (3/26/10)
The law caught up with the couple, and they were sentenced to
prison. Said the judge in their case of Dr. Phil, "What a charlatan this
man is." Observed the black-rober, he promotes himself as someone who
helps people, "but he certainly didn't help you."
Recall This! (3/25/10)
With all those bumped heads, at least on reported broken arm, and
considerable nuisance, one wonders if the company is going to make any
substantive changes in its operation. Will any executives be fired?
Peace = National Security (3/24/10)
This demonstration drew about 100 of the faithful, most of them over
70 years old, all familiar to each other. It won?t be until there are
more new faces in the crowd, and the numbers are in the tens of millions
nationally, that peace will ever be at hand.
The Writing of History (3/23/10)
Their partners in criminality on the health care bill were the
anti-choice fundamentalists, led by Bart ? no, not Simpson; the cartoon
figure is brighter ? Stupak. Observed one of his constituents, he has
neither a uterus or a brain.
Moderate Schmoderate (3/22/10)
It?s curious how often the overseers of the market are willing to
let the market muddle through at the expense of the people. It says
clearly that they are confused about their mission and who pays their
Running Low (3/19/10)
Our Dear Blue Planet Earth is being stretched well beyond its
capacity to sustain the burgeoning global population. We probably can
manage about two billion human beings. We have nearly seven.
The Denise Decade (3/18/10)
Our species needs to move forward to discover the extraordinary
potential of the human being. We must begin to explore what it means to
be alive on this planet from a perspective of what is possible...tap
into the awareness of our true capabilities.
Bits & Pieces (3/17/10)
Speaking of the measure to reform of the corrupted student loan
program, Xavier Becerra said, "The decision we will make will speak to
the character of our nation." Would that every one Capitol Hill was so
Mexican Mire (3/16/10)
The White House announced that they are "outraged" by the killings
but it seems very unlikely that besides warning Americans that certain
parts of Mexico might be unsafe they will do anything.
Fixing Health Care...Really (3/15/10)
These faux representatives have spent the year working not on reform
but on pleasing their campaign contributors. The result is that the bill
they?re struggling to pass, for purely political reasons, smells like a
week into a garbage strike.
Protect the Pachyderms (3/12/10)
The Organization Despairing Over
Republicans has announced a campaign to end the
affiliation of elephants as the image for the Republican Party. The group said that elephants have
been slandered for too long, and the party should find another
Illegal Immigration (3/11/10)
The federal government needs to make it too expensive to try to
cheat the system, both by those coming across the border and those
hiring them. For goodness sakes, if we stop li?l old ladies at airports,
we can stop illegals from getting jobs.
No, the Humanity (3/10/10)
Reading a Nicholas Kristoff
article about what has been going on in the Congo. I was four
sentences in, reading about a particular horror when I jabbed my
mouse to take me off of the page.
Sex Ed-less (3/9/10)
There is all sorts of huzzah-ing about an abstinence-only program
that has somehow been construed to suggest that such teaching actually
works. Well of course it works. On a handful of children, and good for
Bits & Pieces (3/8/10)
People can vote if they are obsessively stupid and utterly devoid of
all reason. They can exercise their power of the ballot if they are
rooting for the apocalypse, if they support the subjugation of women, or
if they think torture is a noble tactic.
Democracy?s Foundation (3/5/10)
People can vote if they are obsessively stupid and utterly devoid of
all reason. They can exercise their power of the ballot if they are
rooting for the apocalypse, if they support the subjugation of women, or
if they think torture is a noble tactic.
Bits & Pieces (3/4/10)
Lauren Ashley is from Pasadena but she is calling herself Miss
Beverly Hills. Beverly Hills ain?t happy about that, especially since
this is another one of the those Bible-quoters who believes she should
decide which people are entitled to marry.
Party or Wake? (3/3/10)
Those too-far-out voices are presenting the left with some pretty
big targets and mainstream "just say no" GOPers are concerned that the
nutso contingent will hurt their chances of beating the Democrats in
In Nature?s Maw (3/2/10)
If the vast majority of scientists who have warned about the
impending dangers of global warming and climate change ? our current
unmentionables ? are correct in their assessment, then it gives one
extra pause when Nature ravages.
Bits & Pieces (3/1/10)
The Iranians are reported to have
moved all of their semi-processed uranium to a single above-ground site,
and no one who should know knows what it means, or at least owns up to
In Other News (2/26/10)
Janet Jackson?s "wardrobe malfunction" is still before the courts
six years later. The Black-Robed Nine ordered the Third Appeals to
reconsider their tossing out of the FCC-levied $550,000 fine for the
The governor slammed fellow GOPers for their gross hypocrisy. He
pointed out that many Republicans in Washington trashed the economic
stimulus package while at the same time taking credit for the jobs that
money created back home.
Down on Sarah (2/24/10)
I can no longer sit on my hands about Sarah Palin. I have long
resisted the innumerable opportunities to make note of her failings. My
goodness, it?s like running around the backcourt as a millions lobs fall
in tantalizing slow motion.
Bits & Pieces (2/23/10)
The federal transportation safety yahoos are going to start random
swabbing the hands and baggage of airport travelers to see if they have
traces of explosives. No, this isn?t an effort to induce better hygiene,
but it makes as much sense.
One Man?s Anger (2/22/10)
Little will have been gained from this man?s action. Another was
killed, several were injured, documents were destroyed, lives were
upended, costs were added to the taxpayers? bill. Surely there was a
better way. We owe it to posterity to find it.
There are a lot of folks very upset that the Christmas plane failed
bomber was Mirandized and given a lawyer. They say this is war so he
should have been treated like any other prisoner. But should alleged
terrorists not have rights, too?
It Ain?t Always about Race (2/18/10)
But let?s also note that there are plenty of folks who aren?t at all
racist who increasingly can?t stand what this man has done, which is
very little, and mostly what he hasn?t done, which is a lot.
Their work had more holes in it than Swiss cheese but the conclusion
makes some sense. I mean, if you declare yourself bored to death, you?re
very likely to see your life as meaningless, and subconsciously your
body might start shutting down.
Presidential Bedding (2/16/10)
I?m a-feared that the yahoos in Washington may overreach and issue
an edict ? for the benefit of bedding industry that requires every
citizen ? every true American ? to buy a new bed set on the third Monday
of the second month.
Bits & Pieces (2/15/10)
If it gets to Lake Michigan and then into the other Great Lakes, it
could destroy the $7 billion a year fishing industry. There was a plan
to block off the locks in Chicago that open onto the lake. The Obama
administration wouldn?t do it.
Hurricane Carly (2/12/10)
Among the technicalities her opposition might raise are her
disastrous tenure at H-P ? she forced through the absorption of Compaq
computer, and maybe stepped on some pesky laws about selling technology
to Iran ? and a skimpy voting record.
Comic No More (2/11/10)
There was considerable frustration apparent at the meeting; someone
used the word "hot" to describe some of the Senators who think the White
House should be leading, not just delivering unserviceable platitudes.
Obama and The Bankers (2/10a/10)
His insistence that ours is a free-market system is utter nonsense.
First of all, because it was taxpayer money that kept the markets
afloat. Second, because the bankers own Congress which makes the rules
that allow the bankers to bilk the American people.
Mainstream Retards (2/10/10)
The teabaggers of today are represented, well-represented, overly so
when you consider the mindlessness of so many on Capitol Hill. If they
had half-a-brain, they?d toss their representatives into the bay, any
Fixing the Senate (2/09/10)
The upper chamber of our national legislature could certainly do
more than they have. For that matter, a comatose rock exhibits more
purpose than the United States Senate.
Money Makes the Candidate (2/08/10)
I thought maybe Poizner was suffering from over-consulting. He had
poured $20 million of his own money into his campaign while Whitman had
invested $40 million into hers and both had spent hugely on presumed
Talking the Walk (2/05/10)
It?s not that Obama?s vocabulary is out of reach ? it?s actually
quite basic ? but he insists on painting murals when posters would reach
more people more directly more quickly. This does not suggest that he
should talk down to people. Quite the contrary.
Gambling with Life (2/04/10)
"You don't go buying a boat when you can barely pay your mortgage.
You don't blow a bunch of cash on Vegas when you're trying to save for
college. You prioritize. You make tough choices."
Misorganized Labor (2/03/10)
They are asking for concessions from the union, including the right
to promote on the basis of competence instead of just seniority. The
union resisted and were ultimately locked out, threatening the viability
of the whole town.
Patriots to Taiwan (2/02/10)
The latest screw-up is his decision to sell $6.4 billion in weapons
to Taiwan. This comes at a time when our relations with Beijing are
particularly important, and when Beijing has entered an era of greater
warmth with the islands nation.
Bits & Pieces (2/01/10)
Authorities are still searching for the black boxes from the
Ethiopian Airlines jet that crashed into the eastern Mediterranean last
week. They hear the pings but unless they recover the boxes, no one will
know why the plane went down.
The Eye Can?t See (1/30/10)
There?s something particularly
ironic in reporting a story about a news organization. At least when you
are dealing with leaks in advance of an official announcement. In this
case, the story is about layoffs at CBS News.
The Shame of It (1/29/10)
The fact that the vital function served by Walter Cronkite and other
serious journalists has been so successfully debased by Fox is an
indictment of Jennings, Brokaw, Rather and their successors who have
driveled network news into irrelevance.
Bits & Pieces (1/28/10)
If you ever needed proof that the stock market is divorced from the
economy, consider that the major indices rose on the day that the next
U.S. budget was forecast to have a $1.35 trillion deficit.
Don?t You Wish (1/27a/10)
Good evening my fellow Americans, I come to you tonight to apologize
for the huge disappointment I?ve been these first 54 weeks of an
administration that was supposed to be all about hope and change.
Pray for Us (1/27/10)
It?s called a tefillin. It?s a pair of small leather cubes connected
by straps. One is attached to the arm and the other to the head.
Overly-religious Jews put them on as paean to their god for rescuing
their forbears from Egypt.
Mother?s Milk of Politics (1/26/10)
That?s why we?re in the mess we?re in today. Campaign reform is
essential to getting our country back on track. Unfortunately those who
would promulgate reform have been bought and paid for and are happy with
the status quo.
The Shame at Justice (1/25/10)
Considering how many people have been released from death row in the
United States, one must presume that at least some ? maybe many ? of
these prisoners in Guantanamo are innocent of the charges, completely or
to some significant degree.
George Leonard (1/23/10)
George believed that ideas were more important than those who voiced
them. He was generous in spirit. He gave willingly of his thinking, both
to peers and to those who approached him with integrity and purpose and
a hunger for understanding.
Bits & Pieces (1/22/10)
Sleep is one of the most under-rated factors for better health. A
new study says if more people ? especially the young ? got more sleep,
there would be less depression, and the problems that arise from it.
Voting for Quality (1/21/10)
I asked her if she would vote for a Republican against Barbara Boxer
if he had a better record and made more sense. No, she answered
adamantly. Then you, I said, are part of the problem. We talked further.
She shifted out of her adamance.
Global Thinking (1/20/10)
it makes the point that the world needs not only an independent
policeman to deal with man-made problems, but a rescue agent that can
step in professionally and efficiently to cope with nature-borne
Some yahoos put together an image of
what Osama Bin Laden might look like ten years after we last saw him. He
was likely killed in the Tora Bora bombings in December of 2001, but
surely the possible differences in his appearance are legion.
Haiti and Horror (1/18/10)
Everyone would be a lot better off if we turned Haiti into a nature
preserve, and sprinkled the remaining populace around the Caribbean and
Latin America where they might be assimilated into healthier societies.
Parallel Universe (1/15/10)
This is actually great news for the donkeys since Dodd was in
serious trouble in Connecticut, and now he?s cleared the way for a
popular Democratic state attorney general to run against a former TV
A Billion Here, A Billion There (1/14/10)
This rant is birthed by the Obama Administration asking Congress for
another $33 billion for their wars. This is on top of a request for $708
billion for the Military Department; and puh-leeze, it hasn?t been about
defense since the Second World War.
Bits & Pieces (1/13/10)
"Game Change" particularly exorcizes the Edwards ? yes, both John
and Elizabeth ? and their stunningly untoward behavior. Most revealing
in the book is how few of the important truths were covered by the main
The Bent Reid (1/12/10)
That?s something when you have the power of Senate Majority Leader?s
office. If you can?t wow your constituents with brilliance and gleaming
service, you can at least buy their patronage with limitless earmarks.
Courage over Incompetence (1/11/10)
They were the sort of things that have happened not infrequently in
the past without sending fighters aloft or causing pilots and flight
attendants to soil themselves. It is the result, one might say, of
edginess about terrorists attacks.
I?m relieved, again, that I didn?t engage that task. For a number of
reasons, most notably that without children I was able to stretch myself
considerably more thin than if others were depending on me for food and
There are all too many whackos and dopes out there, a function of
over-population and the fact that civilization ? and we?re stretching
the term here ? fails to value intellect and logic enough to impart such
essentials to the succeeding generation.
Flyin' Right (1/6/10)
I drove her down to the shuttle, and as her luggage was being
hoisted into the back of the bus, I asked the driver if she might just
drive right out to the plane so Denise wouldn?t have to wait in line.
Bits & Pieces (1/5/10)
A U.S. federal judge threw out
charges against five Blackwater agents accused of heinous crimes in the
slaughter of 17 Iraqi civilians two years ago. The Justice Department
agreed to not use what they learned in the interviews against them.
A Better Decade (1/4/10)
Is it counterintuitive after all my ravings to think I might not be
in high spirits for the holiday season? Dunno. The question ? to myself,
let?s note ? reminds me of a bumpersticker I saw many years ago that
Spies Like Us (1/1/10)
Are these people politically-motivated scare mongers driving up
business for the military-industrial complex? Or should we hope instead
that they are just stunningly incompetent? We're spending $45 billion a
year on so-called intelligence and getting bupkis.