Thursday, July 31, 2008

NEWSFLASH: History Lesson

The world's oldest known joke has been found.

It is a saying of the Sumerians, 1900 years ago, who lived in what is now southern Iraq and goes:
"Something which has never occurred since time immemorial; a young woman did not fart in her husband's lap."

You gotta hand it to them there Sumerians: They were a real hoot. CLICK Now if we cold find a way to apply it to modern times. Let's say, the Bush girls?

Update: Tuesday Evening Quiz

There have been several entries so far, and there is still room for more.

Republican Humor (58)

There have not been many Barack Obama jokes surfacing so far, aside from the wisecracks we hear from late night comedians. The press has noted this and speculated about why, some saying that Obama is not attackable like most politicians or that he is not funny. At last, this has come our way, although it may not be original to 2008:

Barack Obama is a Chicago politician. Like other windy city politicos, Obama goes to the cemetery to register voters.

One night, with a sheaf of registration certificates in hand, Obama went to a very old cemetery in central Chicago, taking along a staff member to hold the flashlight. TRaipsing through a graveyard in the dark was an unnerving situation for the staffer, whose imagination was running wild. The thing to do was keep moving.

They came across a grave so old and worn that they couldn't make out the name on the tombstone. Barack struggled to make sense of the antique engraving. Finally, the staffer holding the flashlight got impatient and nagged, "Oh forget it, let's move on!"

Obama angrily exclaimed, "This person has a much right to vote as anyone else here!"

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Poking Fun at the Candidates (1)

Jabs with a real point......

Clicking on pictures will usually enlarge them

their present, your future

Japanese fast trains in station. Some countries have invested in moving people rapidly overland -- and safely. The United States hasn't. Sooner or later, we will.

Imagine: Detroit to downtown Chicago, 90 minutes.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Tuesday Evening Quiz

It's been a long time since we had a Tuesday Quiz, so here goes, again. How many sets of teeth and whiskers can you identify. That is, who are they on? Send an email.





McCain's spots

John McCain has had a spot removed from his face.

This is not age-related, it's related to sun exposure.

People in their 20's have such spots removed. It's a wise thing to do. McCain should not be criticized for this. No conclusion about his general health can be drawn.

for what it's worth

A thought, for what it's worth 
Is not McCain saying that Obama had a duty to go visit the injured American soldiers in foreign hospitals? 

And has not McCain criticized Obama for going overseas at all, calling it grandstanding? 

And, would this be the same McCain whose policies did so much to place those soldiers in those hospitals? 

Does this mean that McCain has fulfilled his duties by creating the casualties, and now it's someone else's duty to go comfort them?  

I don't much like this side of McCain. 

Monday, July 28, 2008

noted in passing

Michigan State University does not appear this year on the list of top party schools as issued by The Princeton Review.  

First we heard that Michigan's football team had lost it's usual place on the Top 20 list of college football teams, now it's this terrible news about Michigan State. For our poor state, it's just one blow after the other to our self-esteem. 

Monday Morning Friends Report, July 2, 2008

This has been a busy week for the people under the Birches. 
There are advantages to being busy, but one of the costs is that the Friends Report sometimes gets posted late and then sometimes people get skipped because of time pressures. 

What's going on with some of our folks

SANDY - home from North Carolina.

SPARTY AND GIGI - were surprised by a large group of friends and family at an Anniversary Party. The kids planned it. It was a great event.

DASHMANN AND SKUZZA - home from Ohio.

FELIX - has disappeared again.

PAT W.- Received a letter from Leonardo DiCaprio. She was just thrilled. Finally he had answered some of her fan mail. Then she opened it and found that all he wanted was for her to help save the polar bears.

MARSHA - home from Chicago.

What some folks are thinking and talking about

ALICE - noticed that when Obama was in Jerusalem he placed a prayer message into a niche of the Western Wall. She thought: Someone will steal that. Sure enough, someone did. Not hard to find it with a hundred news cameras aimed at the whole event. Now the prayer's been printed somewhere and some of the "MSM"( which stands in the media for 'MAIN STREAM MEDIA") are all in a stew about whether they should print it. Some Jews say it's a sin. Other people think that stealing is a crime that thieves shouldn't be rewarded. But as Alice says: "Obama would be an idiot to believe no one was going to take it and blab. He can't do anything privately anymore. " She is especially upset with CNN for going on and on about this as if it were important.

Here was Obama's Prayer:
"Lord, protect my family and me. Forgive me my sins and help me guard against pride and despair. Give me the wisdom to do what is right and just. And make me an instrument of your will."

SPARTY- sent around this reference to efforts by the Italian government to preserving the City of Pompeii buried almost two centuries ago by the eruption of a volcano. Many of our readers have gone to Pompeii, so this is recommended reading: CLICK

BILL FROM WNNCO - read and appreciated and then circulated this bit of wisdom from Calvin Coolidge. It's a thought which BILL agrees with.
Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful people with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan "press on" has solved and will always solve the problems of the human race.

Late goal pushes Kalamazoo to the next round of PDL playoffs

Pontiac, MI (July 26, 2008) - The top seed in the Premier Development League (PDL) took its toll again as an upset victim in Conference playoffs. The Bucks conceded a goal in the 86th minute to the Kalamazoo Outrage to bring the game level at 1-1 and force overtime in the Central Conference tournament at Ultimate Soccer Arenas. From there Michigan would give up an overtime goal and a final mop up tally in the 120th minute to lose 3-1

IRISH MIKE - sent this picture of his attempt to capture the baby skunks that came out from under his shed. Her set the trap, baited it with sardines, and then sat back while the skunks walked into the trap, took the dish out of the trap and dined in the yard.

Last week Marsha sent this puzzle to tantalize us all:
Name a famous figure from early American history whose names, both first and last, contain 5 letters each, made up of only 6 letters, some of them repeated. The same 6 letters also make up the name of a second famous figure from early American history whose first name has 6 letters and last has 4 letters.

Well, Dashmann and Bud have solved it. No one else seems to have, not even Marsha. OH, WAIT. LATE WORD IS THAT MARSHA HAS SOLVED IT AFTER ALL.

The answer is:

What some folks are smiling at.

VODEA sent this:


JERRY -sent this ethnic humor, perhaps in honor of someone he knows?

Two Mexican businessmen in Tijuana were sitting down for a break in their soon-to-be new store. As yet, the store wasn't ready, with only a few shelves set up. One said to the other, 'I bet any minute now some idiot tourist is going to walk by, put his face to the window, and ask what we're selling'.

No sooner were the words out of his mouth when, sure enough, a curious Japanese tourist walked to the window, had a peek, and in a thick Japanese accent asked 'What you sell?'

One of the men replied sarcastically, 'We're selling ass-holes.'

Without skipping a beat, the Japanese man said, 'You doing velly well, only two left!'

JERRY also sent: This picture of the David Statue which is returning to Italy after 2 years in the U.S.

Man defends home with his new gun rights.

Jim Adkisson of Tennessee has been arrested as a prime suspect in the shooting up of a church in Nashville. The reason he is a suspect is because he was tackled at the scene by church congregants.

Adkisson evidently lived right next door to the church. The church is a liberal Christian church called: Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church. We're talking ACLU levels of 'liberal' here, you know, anathema to lots of Southern folk.

This is going to raise some fascinating new questions for the Supreme Court. The Court recently told us that we are all entitled to have firearms in our homes to protect us.

How do we define a threat to our homes?
Can we defend our homes by attacking our threats off our own property?
Can we defend our souls as vigorously as we protect our physical safety?

Recommended Reading, from Irene

If you liked the item, just below, about the Neanderthals and red hair, you will really enjoy this, sent from Australia by Irene: CLICK

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Not worth Cro-ing about


In the lineage of our family, there is some record of reddish hair.  Not flaming red, no, but sort of auburn reddish.  One of our favorite theories was generated a few years ago  CLICK HERE FOR 2001 STORY that red hair is a left-over from the NEANDERTHAL PEOPLE of Western Europe 30,000 years or so ago.

Naturally, this would mean that Neanderthals had inter-bred with the CRO-MAGNON PEOPLE who came into Europe and displaced the Neanderthals.

Now there has been research suggesting that this is not true. Recent DNA studies indicate that the Cro-Magnons are related closely to modern people, but are not related to Neanderthals.CLICK  


Too bad. Under the BIRCHES we liked the idea of being a little more primitive than the rest of the world. It would help explain a lot of things. Let's hope there's lots more research going on to save the legend.

Sunday silly Sites

Oh, LOOK! A bouncing ball. Go here to drive yourself crazy. click

An alphabetical list of Newsday's idea of who were the best baseball players of all time. This is guaranteed to create an argument: click

If you hear of other silly sites you think we might post, let us know. We'll give you credit.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

They're Coming to Take Me Away (File #24)

A mugshot

Children - a word of advice. If you plan to lead a life on the wrong side of the law, it does you no good to multiply your identifiers. A discreet rose on your ass cheek, maybe, but exercise some restraint.

A Light Through the Leaves

The mind of the good man thinks of Justice; the mind of the mean man thinks of gain.

Wacko of the Week, July 26, 2008

This is Keith Walendowski of Milwaukee WI. He lives with -- or did -- his mama.

As you can see, he still has that "bed head" look. This is because it was early in the morning when he was arrested. There are so many, many wonderful dimensions to this story that it just needs to be told and appreciated by a larger audience.

Mr. Walendowski tried to start his lawnmower. It wouldn't. He shot it with his shotgun.

There is a lot here to sympathize with.
1. Any man has the right, according to the Supreme Court, to defend his home and castle. That is the message of the Second Amendment to the Constitution. It was his lawnmower, it was his yard, it was his house, it was his shotgun. All of this is perfectly legal so far. Where's the beef?

2. Which one among us has not wanted to punish the inanimate objects put on earth by God and clever engineers to serve us, but which give out when we need them? Who hasn't kicked a recalcitrant vending machine? Who hasn't shoved a broomstick into a garbage disposer and knocked it off the bottom of the sink? Who hasn't thrown an ashtray through a television screen? So, again, where's the beef?

3. It was a LawnBoy.

Well, evidently the police suspected Keith of being drunk. Don't know why. It's OK to be drunk, we think, and possess a shotgun in the yard. Maybe the illegality comes in being disorderly. He made too much noise. He should have known that. He faces an $11,000 fine.

Besides, every one knows that in the United States, if you're going to shoot an antagonist, you want to drag its body into your house afterwards. What, is the guy nuts not to know that?

Or, maybe he shot it in the back when it was trying to flee?

The laws will catch us all with these little technicalities. Stay tuned. CLICK

Friday, July 25, 2008

Add to Your Day: a jazzy memory

Never mind Natalie,

This is Unforgettable CLICK

Everything's gone screwy except happy hour


See more of Gary McCoy's work here: CLICK
If you click on the cartoon, it may get bigger.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Back home under the BIRCHES after a brief vacation.  

Monday, July 21, 2008

update on Wacko of the Week

The New England Revolution tied that game they played in Los Angeles, after their eventful flight on Friday.  
No word on whether they drank the bottle of champagne.  
The team's management says that only coaches were involved in the incident.  

Goodbye Jo Stafford

For this reason alone ...
But there is so much more to remember

Monday Morning Friends Report, 07/21/08

There has been some wet and humid weather here in mid Michigan, and some of us have had activities interrupted by storms. Everything around here is gloriously verdant. The gardens and flowers are loving this summer. A concert was ended abruptly in Saginaw when thunder storms overtook the outdoor event. There are stories of numerous break-ins in the neighorhood of some of our friends. Meanwhile, many BIRCHies are still running all over the countryside celebrating summer.

What Some Folks Are Doing :

FELIX - says he's contemplating a major life change. Stay tuned.

JERRY - how wonderful he looks driving around in that great looking Chrysler.

SCOT - is learning all about fish finders, Global Positioning equipment, auto pilots, and related fandangles.

TRASE - all is well in the expectancy department.

PAT W - heading for Cheboygan for a couple of days, but has new drapes in her kitchen. Oh, wow! Everyone go see them. "Only A Nickel" a look.

STEVE - ta-da-ta-da!! Caught a fish.

DASHMANN and SKUZZA - home from Higgins Lake.

THE SNIDES - a relatively new follower of BIRCHES is running for office. County Commission. He has a slogan: "Respecting the Past, Representing the Future" which fits his interest in history and government very well. Good Luck!

IRISH MIKE and AMY - Vacation in Traverse City.

SPARTY and GIGI - Home from Wisconsin.

ALICE - enjoying some good news for a change.

BILL from WNNCO : Has been doing a lot of GO-KART racing, and

He says: This is the present state of the COBALT Superkart. Obviously there is a nut at the wheel instead of on the wheel.
(But of course, he usually wins.)

SANDY - in North Carolina

CHRIS - working on a real estate deal and on his bicycle riding.

Toronto, ON (July 20, 2008) - The Michigan Bucks finished off their thirteenth regular season in the United Soccer League's (USL) Premier Development League by finishing off the Toronto Lynx Sunday by a 3-0 scoreline. With the win, the Bucks (13-1-2, 41 points) avenge the only regular season loss to the Lynx and secure the #1 seed in the PDL playoffs beginning this week.

MARSHA - in Chicago
wearing new clothes.

And there's this:

What Some Folks Are Talking/Reading About :

Here is Will Shortz’s puzzle from NPR today:

Name a famous figure from early American history whose names, both first and last, contain 5 letters each, made up of only 6 letters, some of them repeated. The same 6 letters also make up the name of a second famous figure from early American history whose first name has 6 letters and last has 4 letters.

DIG S. - is reading about Bush's extraordinary claims for "Executive Privilege."
I thought he said he his office would help with the investigation into the leak and would fire anyone responsible. Now he's claiming executive privilege. Nice!!!
Read aboutit here: CLICK

SPARTY and BROTHER DUFFY - Reading a fascinating re-accounting of suggestions made by a certain President years ago. The article is called "29 Years Wasted" and can be seen here CLICK

What We're Smiling About :

JERRY - sent this picture of his latest romantic effort.

or, was it this one, a woman he knows who has lghtened the load in order to save gasoline.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

They're Coming to Take Me Away (File #23)

New baggy pants law in Chicago suburb: Can't show more than 3 inches of underwear in public
By Associated Press,   2:06 PM EDT, July 20, 2008
Lynwood IL

So, I'm gonna assume that these Disney underwear girls are busted in Lynwood. 



Some very bad news.

The American Women's soccer team will be defending its Olympic Championship this summer in Beijing.

They will have to do it without their best player. Abby Wambach suffered a broken leg in a collision with a Brazilian player on July 17.

Sunday silly Sites

Order your anti-McCain merchandise here: CLICK
(Note: anti-Obama merchandise was featured here a couple of weeks ago.)

Here's one guys idea of the worst police mug shots ever made: CLICK

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Wacko of the Week, July 19, 2008

"JOHN DOE" - Hudson, MA

On an airline flight from the East to the West coast, this unidentified 22-year old gentleman took off his clothes and ambled down the aisle.

This in front of the coaches and players of the New England Revolution a professional soccer team, any one of whom could stomp an antagonist to death in about 15 seconds. The team were on their way to Los Angeles for a game today.

The naked man was subdued by the coaches and forced to redress. Then when he leapt up and tried to open the emergency exit, he was subdued again, and held until the plane made an unplanned landing in Oklahoma City.

The crew of the airliner gave the team a bottle of champagne, anticipating their win today.

Said Craig Tornberg, the Revolution's General Manager, "I've been in tougher scuffles than this one, but not at 30,000 feet.” CLICK


FOX NEWS - for misidentifying the Strait of Hormuz on its graphics. CLICK

POPE BENEDICT - Went to Australia and urged all faiths to unite against violence. It's a little hard to know how to deal with this plea, because, after all, we are talking about institutional religion. Let's see, there's the Christians v. the Moslems. The Moslems v. the Hindus. The Jews v. the Moslems. The Catholics v. the Protestants. The Sunnis v. the Shiites. And tomorrow, we'll plead for an end to hunger. CLICK

Friday, July 18, 2008

Ask Bud (from whence cometh wisdom) #5

Many readers have written and asked me why the New Republic would run a cover cartoon insulting Mr. and Mrs. Obama the way they did.

I called together my brain trust, my most competent advisers: BARBARA BUSH, TED NUGENT, PAT ROBERTSON, RON PAUL, JESSE VENTURA, and SCREECH.

They consulted with their highest connection, Jesus, and this is what they concluded.

It is the fault of the Clintons. The Clintons made it acceptable to say nasty things about black people, by running against the Obamas. There are really only a few sources of evil in this country, and the Clintons are one of them.

[P.S. - The Clintons are believed also to be a major cause of scabies.]

Thursday, July 17, 2008

They're Coming to Take Me Away (file 22)

Legally dressed Dubaians

then, this story
Dubai police detain 17 foreign men
By Associated Press

1:28 PM EDT,
July 17, 2008

DUBAI, UAE (AP) _ Police in the Gulf tourist hub of Dubai say they've detained 17 foreign men for allegedly being gay and wearing women's clothing in malls and other public places.

Police spokesman Zuhair Horoun says the men were either visiting or working in Dubai. He says they were detained Wednesday but would not elaborate.

Dubai's Gulf News reported Thursday that police detained "40 cross-dressing tourists." The discrepancy in the numbers couldn't immediately be explained.

COMMENT - I'm not a cross-dresser and haven't been to Dubai, but this is what I'm wondering. How do they know? It would seem that putting on a wedding gown would get any cross-dresser through the mall. This is not in any way a criticism. Just speculating.

Thursday Morning Smile-Maker (53)

Lovely in Lilac

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

ADD TO YOUR DAY - A Call from Ireland


This is dedicated to all our Irish friends, especially, the Hanleys, Laffertys, Woodses, and Alice. And, you ---- CLICK

or, in the voice of the writer, herself: CLICK

A Thousand Points of Fight - July 16, 2008

The wonder of democracy is the ample opportunity to fight over stuff. Wouldn't have it any other way, would we? Here are a few of BIRCHES' ineffectual jabs ---

OBAMA - No, we're not impressed around here with his wiggling around in some issues we think he should have been standing still with. This includes his vote on the FISA and his new position on withdrawal from Iraq.

McCAIN - we have heard some talk from friends, and we have seen some things on other blogs about McCain's age, and hinting that, or stating outright that, he is too old to be President. This is an argument that BIRCHES absolutely rejects. Ageism is no more appropriate than racism. If Sen. McCain were disabled in some way due to his age, that would be an issue. This is not.

JESSE JACKSON - We don't care what he says about anyone. He is not relevant to this election. It's time for him to take a role as citizen, he is no longer a leader.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Don't Let the Doorknob Hit Ya

by Bud at BIRCHES

When your ass goes out the door, we truly will be gladder.
And if you never show again, it really doesn't matter.
Take your whole benighted crew,
Take your ditzy daughters, too,
Take everyone who came with you! Here, let me hold the ladder.

Pack Laura with her smarmy drawl who never gave us much relief,
And take your crooked cronies all from oil, gas and beef.
We'll wave a very fond farewell,
As you go off to Texas hell,
Glad to break the evil spell, that caused us such a grief.

Take your plutocratic pals, your bum Attorneys-Gen'ral.
The Lone Star state'll welcome them or else the Federal pen'll.
Pack up mama Barbara who
Married George and then bred you,
Take your brother Neil too, with blisters on his tendril.

Toss slippery Dick upon the load, and Condolezza Rice.
And don't forget ol' Karl Rove, who gave such bad advice.
Take your whole disgusting crew,
Take Scooter LIbby off with you,
Take your wimpy doggie too; we won't remind you twice.

Don't leave behind those hypocrites who came with you in cadres.
Save lots of room for Jesus freaks, pastors, priests and padres.
The ones who preached our eardrums sore,
Then prayed our country into war,
And left us mired in guts and gore of Baghdad kids and madres.

Haul away - we pray - those holy folks who got so full of malice.
The family values 'feet-of-clay' who worshipped every phallus.
Take your jail bait Enrons,
Your diaper wearers, bathroom johns,
The water boarding neo-Cons, all back home to Dallas.

Don't write, don't call, don't send email, we want to quite forget you.
And if you want to visit us, we'll never ever let you.
Take your neo-fascist crew
Take the Skull and Bones with you,
Take your secret meetings too; we wish we'd never met you.

Monday, July 14, 2008

a bit of satire

Seriously folks, this is NOT serious. It's just a joke.

McCain Issues Top Ten Funniest Ways to Kill Iranians
Andy Borowitz
Posted July 9, 2008 | 10:46 AM (EST)

Citing what he called the "overwhelmingly positive response to my jokes about killing Iranians," presumptive G.O.P. presidential nominee John McCain issued today a list of his favorite humorous remarks on the subject.

Titled "John McCain's Top Ten Funniest Ways to Kill Iranians," the list was published on his official campaign website at

Speaking in a video on the site, a smiling Sen. McCain says, "My friends, in these trying times in which we live, there's one thing all Americans can agree on: killing Iranians is hilarious."

Sen. McCain, who first joked about killing Iranians months ago by singing "bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb Iran" to the tune of the Beach Boys' hit "Barbara Ann" and who yesterday commented that the U.S. could kill Iranians with cigarettes, was apparently "just warming up," one aide said today.

"Anyone who has enjoyed Sen. McCain's side-splitting jokes about killing Iranians will be blown away by this list," the aide said. "He's in fine form."

Sen. McCain's list of funny ways to kill Iranians ranges from the caustic -- "Send Iran lead-based hookah pipes from China" -- to the whimsical -- "Tell Christie Brinkley that Iran has been cheating on her."

The list ends with what Sen. McCain dubs the number one funniest way to kill Iranians: "Vote for me."

Monday Morning Friends Report, July 14, 2008

Lots of people are off on vacations here and there, but some stay in touch even then with their friends back at BIRCHES.

What some people are doing:

SCOT - planning fishing trips on the Great Lakes.

DASHMANN and SKUZZA - going up North for a few days.

ALICE - Back to Alabama? Maybe

IRISH MIKE and AMY - Son off to Europe for school and travel.

MARSHA - heading home for South Carolina after two weeks in Michigan.

SPARTY and GIGI - Heading for Wisconsin after a camping trip with the family

BILL FROM WNNCO - is back racing again. Good luck!

MARGARET - home from Missouri.

What folks are smiling at: [Most images are enlarged if you click on them]

'True Patriotism' from DASHMANN:


from MIKE C. almost from CARROLLTON: quotations from the church bulletin
1.The Fasting & Prayer Conference includes meals.
2. The sermon this morning: 'Jesus Walks on the Water.' The sermon tonight: 'Searching for Jesus.'
3. Ladies, don't forget the rummage sale. It's a chance to get rid of those things not worth keeping around the house. Bring your husbands.
4. The peacemaking meeting scheduled for today has been canceled due to a conflict.
5. Don't let worry kill you off - let the Church help.
6. Next Thursday there will be tryouts for the choir. They need all the help they can get.
7. Low Self Esteem Support Group will meet Thursday at 7 PM. Please use the back door.

from JERRY:

FROM JERRY: California Telephone Survey

The latest telephone poll taken by the California Governor's office,
asked whether people who live in California think illegal immigration
is a serious problem:
29% of respondents answered: 'Yes, it is a serious problem.'
71% of respondents answered: 'No es una problema seriosa.'


From JOE who does not read this blog:
Summer Classes for Men 
@ the


by Thursday, July 30th 2008 


Class 1
How To Fill Up The Ice Cube Trays--Step by Step, with Slide Presentation. 
Meets 4 weeks, Monday and Wednesday for 2 hours beginning 7:00 PM. 
Class 2 
The Toilet Paper Roll--Does It Change Itself? 
Round Table Discussion. 
Meets 2 weeks, S Saturday 12:00 for 2 hours. 
Class 3 
Is It Possible To Urinate Using The Technique Of Lifting The Seat and Avoiding The Floor, Walls and Nearby Bathtub?--Group Practice. 
Meets 4 weeks, Saturday 10:00 PM for 2 hours.

What some folks have been reading or talking about :

DIG S - sent this reference to an article which is fascinating: "John McCain Does Know the Price of Gas .." Recommended : CLICK

Excerpt from "Where Have All the Leaders Gone?" by Lee Iacocca with Catherine Whitney

ALICE - How employers are using a huge hole in Federal Law to deny benefits to workers who have earned thm. (Yes, it's happened to her!) CLICK

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Remembering K.O.
whose birthday this was.

Sunday silly Sites

A quiz about pets. You'll, probably fail this. I got 50%, and that's failure. click

The 10 worst candies ever made. click

Saturday, July 12, 2008

defying democracy: Rove

Karl Rove is contemptuous. He doesn't think Congress should be asking him questions and he doesn't intend to appear in order to answer any.

Congress has the power to compel attendance. But Rove won't come. He defies subpoenas.

If Congress brings charges against Rove, Bush will pardon him just as he did Scooter Libby.

Here is what we must do. Wait until January 21, when Bush himself will be gone. Then go after Rove.

Goodbye Michael DeBakey

You saved
many lives of
people we know.
Thank you for
your work

Wacko of the Week, July 12, 2008

Oh this is so-o-o easy. This week's WACKO, without any serious competition is
JESSE JACKSON, for these two statements --

1. Jesse Jackson tells what he thinks of the Obama Candidacy.

"He's talking down to the black folk."

This comes from a man who goes around having his audiences chant lines such as these:

"Down with dope, up with hope."

"If my mind can conceive it and my heart can believe it then I can achieve it."

"Keep hope alive!"

2. Jackson explains what is meant by 'CHANGE WE CAN BELIEVE IN."

"I want to cut his nuts out."


By sheer coincidence, our runner-up for Wacko of the Week, is someone with proclivities very similar to Mr. Jackson's.

He is SKYLAR DELEON of California, who, when imprisoned for a double murder hacked his own penis off with a razor. Why? Don't know. Result? Prison guards appeared and saved him from himself. The item was reattached and Skylar now awaits a trial in which he may receive the death penalty. When he swings, he will still be swinging. All's well that ends well.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

The Environment: Oceans

Two stories today about the conditions of the oceans indicate the importance of more research and more thought in how to protect what we have.  

Most ecological news is dismal, and this is no exception, but the capacity of humankind to formulate solutions to tough problems is not diminished by global warming or the pressure of difficulties.  

from National Geographic: 

A Third of Reef-Building Corals at Risk of Extinction
Brian Handwerk
for National Geographic News
July 10, 2008

A third of the world's major reef-building coral species are in danger of extinction, an international team of scientists warns in a study published today.

Because coral reefs are home to more than a quarter of all marine species, their loss could be devastating for biodiversity in the world's oceans.

"If corals themselves are at risk of extinction and do in fact go extinct, that will most probably lead to a cascade effect where we will lose thousands and thousands of other species that depend on coral reefs," said the study's lead author Kent Carpenter, a zoologist at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia.

from ScienceNOW
Warming Spells Trouble for Fish

By Christopher Pala
ScienceNOW Daily News
10 July 2008

FORT LAUDERDALE, FLORIDA--Global warming of the oceans will likely cause the extinction by 2050 of dozens of fish species that cannot migrate to colder waters, according to a study presented here yesterday at the 11th International Coral Reef Symposium. "The loss of biodiversity will be considerable, and replacing them with new species would take millions of years," says co-author Daniel Pauly of the University of British Columbia (UBC) in Vancouver, Canada,
July 10

You are friendly and generous as usual, and you'll be recognized for it. In fact, you already have been.

Thursday Morning Smile-Maker (52)


Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Missiles: Newsflash

Iran test-fires missiles in Persian Gulf

Just one more way the Bushies have made us safer:  Our Iraq troops will soon be within missile range of a country which is furtively building nuclear weapons.  Oh, dear.  

Trains: Newsflash

Train derails into Mississippi River in NE Iowa
By Associated Press
9:32 AM EDT,
July 9, 2008

GUTTENBERG, Iowa - Four locomotives pulling a freight train have derailed and fallen into the Mississippi River near Guttenberg in northeast Iowa. The Clayton County sheriff's office says the engines operated by the Iowa, Chicago & Eastern Railroad went off the tracks about 6 a.m. Wednesday.

Dispatcher Larry Crubaugh (CREW'-bah) says the derailment happened about 2 miles south of Guttenberg. He says the tracks run along a bluff beside the river and the train "apparently didn't stay on the bluff." Crubaugh says two engineers were taken to a hospital, but he had no other details.

COMMENT: Such unhappy events can and should, with proper attention and investment, be reduced practically to zero on any modern train system.
July 9

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Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Fast trains, revisited

BIRCHES has run a series of notes and articles about the need to develop fast trains in the U.S. Now Amtrak is reporting that its trains are becoming more-and-more popular, even though we haven't invested as a country in our train system for years. We have not tried to develop any fast train transportation yet. Meanwhile, we spend billions on supporting air travel and maintaining roads.

In this commentary, Derrick Jackson of the Boston Globe talks about what the two candidates have or haven't done for train travel in the United States.


They're Coming to Take Me Away (File #21)

oops! A mistake in the militia

Now that the Supreme Court has decided that we're all members of the militia and entitled to guns in our homes, I suppose we have to expect that some of our militia folks will sometimes goof up.

This is Nathan Lee Johnsonbaugh, 20, of Suffolk, Virginia, who was arrested for a silly mistake. He put cans in a tire, propped that against his brother's house and took shootin' practice. One shot went through the house and hit his brother in the back. Oh! Damn! And he don't look like no bad guy, does he?

All in the defense of home and nation. 

a Light Through the Leaves

"He who dares not offend cannot be honest."
--Thomas Paine