Monday, May 31, 2010

Memorial Day, 2010

After being awakened at 8:00 a.m. by a phone call from Direct TV, I kid you not, I thought about how that phone call describes all that is wrong with America - Rupert Murdoch doesn't believe a holiday means a day off work for people or a day to celebrate dead soldiers, it's just another day to make money.

Classless Society?

I think NOT! This piece on Memphis is exactly what the right wing in this country refuse to acknowledge - we live in a class society & being any other color but white exacerbates the problems. & what is so heartbreaking is that President Obama, during his successful campaign, promised a bottom up recovery. As Memphis proves, there is no other way to say this, President Obama lied.
Not so long ago, Memphis, a city where a majority of the residents are black, was a symbol of a South where racial history no longer tightly constrained the choices of a rising black working and middle class. Now this city epitomizes something more grim: How rising unemployment and growing foreclosures in the recession have combined to destroy black wealth and income and erase two decades of slow progress.


The median income of black homeowners in Memphis rose steadily until five or six years ago. Now it has receded to a level below that of 1990 — and roughly half that of white Memphis homeowners, according to an analysis conducted by Queens College Sociology Department for The New York Times.

**** unemployment here, mirroring national trends, has risen to 16.9 percent from 9 percent two years ago; it stands at 5.3 percent for whites....


For every dollar of wealth owned by a white family, a black or Latino family owns just 16 cents, according to a recent Federal Reserve study.


The Economic Policy Institute’s forthcoming “The State of Working America” analyzed the recession-driven drop in wealth. As of December 2009, median white wealth dipped 34 percent, to $94,600; median black wealth dropped 77 percent, to $2,100. So the chasm widens, and Memphis is left to deal with the consequences.

My emphases.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Dennis Hopper, R.I.P.

Cancer gets another one.

Easy Rider

Blue Velvet "In Dreams" Trailer

Apocalypse Now - You can't go out into space...

Why Capitalism Stinks

While it may be true that the dickwad speculators lost their money, it does not make up for the lives of the people who were removed because they stood in the way of exorbitant profits.
“People assumed they could boost revenues by kicking people out and raising rents.”
What happened to the kind of social responsibility exhibited by Met Life?
MetLife built Parkmerced, Stuyvesant Town, Riverton and a handful of other large complexes in the 1940s amid a national housing crisis in a remarkable effort to provide homes for returning veterans. At Stuyvesant Town, for instance, the company received special property tax exemptions in return for agreeing to build the complex, maintaining relatively low rents and limiting its annual profit to 6 percent.
Where are the political leaders who will negotiate a limited profit margin? Leaders who will demand corporations do the right thing? Leaders who give a shit about replacing business owners who are control freaks? My emphasis.

Hindsight Doesn't Bring Back 23 Dead People

Instead of more training, how about we ban the drones, or better yet, get out of Afghanistan.
On receiving the results of the investigation, General McChrystal recommended a battery of additional training exercises for servicemen and women coming to Afghanistan, and additional training for those already here. In addition to reprimanding the four officers and admonishing the other two, General McChrystal asked Air Force commanders to open an investigation into the Predator operators.

Tell Me Something Else I Don't Know

Gulf of Mexico destruction continues.
President Obama, who visited the Gulf Coast on Friday, spoke broadly about the government’s response to the environmental disaster, saying that “not every judgment we make will be right the first time out.”

He also added, seemingly capturing the mood of engineers working to plug the well: “There are going to be a lot of judgment calls here. There are not going to be silver bullets or perfect answers.”
Well, that's about as mealy-mouthed as one can get. Deja vu all over again.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Back From The U.P.

Some beautiful country, the beauty of the fish remains a dark, moist secret.

Some pics later.

Friday, May 21, 2010

So, Mr. RLK, You're Just A Simple Cleaning Professional, Eh?

I think NOT!
...spending long hours in a Kettering University basement lab researching....
My emphasis. Plus this university is in Flint, MI, home of you-know-who.  If it walks like a duck....

Things I Wish I'd Said, #478,333,234,323

From Doghouse Riley, in describing everyone's Grifter Assholis*:

"...Mom Someone Else Would Like To Fuck and Dan Quayle impressionist...."

*for the uninitiated: Sarah Palin

Thursday, May 20, 2010

It's My Birthday

It's my birthday today, I'm 61 years old. I appreciate all the fine messages of happiness I've received from my Facebook friends. The best birthday greeting however, came from the best & cutest identical twins in the history of the world.

I'm about to leave for a week's fishing in the UP of MI. I hope I actually catch some fish, preferably salmonids, of the Char variety. I recently purchased a slide-in camper for the pickup & this trip is the maiden voyage. I'm going with a friend who has a teardrop trailer. He refuses to let me sleep with him, prude, so I was forced to buy the camper. Maybe it has something to do with my supposed snoring, I've never heard myself snore & experience is supposed mean something. Given my advanced age, I am imagining some pretty laid back fishing, maybe getting ready by, let's say, 10 a.m. or so, maybe later. Then a leisurely lunch, some painkillers, then hitting the stream or lake or river, maybe the beach. Then back to the campsite & some venison or good cold meat or maybe the nearest bar with a pizza oven. Who knows. I do believe I'll have some fun. I am hoping to keep my loyal four readers up to date on the trip, but knowing the UP, I'm not hopeful about Internets/Tubes access. I've been searching Google Earth for a coffee house. We're going to a fairly remote area, but I believe they actually drink coffee in MI, now that they've gotten rid of that ridiculous governor, Engler. I've got physical therapy tomorrow morning, then I'm changing the oil in truck, then packing up the rest of the gear. Later, gators.

Show Us Your Papers & Now...

...this. I just really can't understand how a city like New Orleans can exist in a state as backward as Louisiana. If it wasn't for the food & the music of NOLA, I wonder how LA would be remembered? Remembered? That's probably too much, since the state is in no danger of going anywhere. With an asshat governor like Jindal, who didn't serve in the military, the proposed law sounds about right.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Just How Stupid Are The People Of Arizona?

This stupid. Don't go to Arizona. Jim Harrison, sell your casita. There are better states in which to hunt quail, walk, write the great works you write. I'm no big fan of identity course work, the worst sort of Zen study, but this bill is clearly racist in its origination & will be so in its enforcement.
A bill that aims to ban ethnic studies in Arizona schools was signed into law Tuesday by Gov. Jan Brewer, cheering critics who called such classes divisive and alarming others who said it's yet another law targeting Latinos in the state.

Amur Tiger Time

This is a great idea. Plus, how cute is this:

Born Free: Baby Tigers Will Return to the Wild

Friday, May 07, 2010

If You Can Get It

Nice work. If you read the biography of Neil Gaiman, you will understand why he is worth the $45,000.

AARP Poll, Yes, All You Smart Alecks, I'm A Geezer

The problem is clear, now what about solutions?
Schwartz, a professor at the University of Washington and author of 16 books on
relationships, said it was notable how even respondents in their 70s and 80s
stressed that sex was important to their quality of life.
My emphasis.

Freedom Is Just Another Word

A word the Roman Catholic Church consistently fails to understand, or even accept. I guess this church, this university doesn't mind manking its members stupider & stupider. Oh well, it's only 2010.

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Big Surprise & Not A Good One

David Obey, my representative, has decided to call it quits. A long time ago my father ran for County Clerk in a county in Obey's district. I remember standing with them, at a Labor Temple. & speaking of Labor Temples, it is a sorry state of affairs that the union movement have lost many of these great buildings. The one where Obey, my father, & I stood, was destroyed, replaced by a bank.

Our Far Flung Or Flung Far Correspondents

Here is the text of an email I received today from S. It's too bad May Day in America has shriveled up into pretty much nothing. One bright spot here in Wisco, however, was that trout season opened on May 1.

Happy May Day! I found myself in Madrid for this year's celebration and joined an impressive array of pro-union and labor rights activists in that part of our world! ole!

See, We Don't Need No Regulation





Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Saturday, May 01, 2010

America, The Happy Drunk

I'll direct you here. To me the important point is this:
... one of the lessons of the current mess in the Gulf is that when you try to make policy based on the politics as opposed to the merits, you always, always, always get bit in the ass.

This has always been my answer, as well, when I hear the arguments about how we need the politics in order to get a watered-down, half-baked, semi-pro, crapola health care bill, or energy bill, or climate bill. Well, not to put too fine a point on it, but I guess the machinery of politics, Obama-style, has been oiled. My emphasis.