Monday, May 31, 2010

Memorial Day

Here are some things I think on this Memorial Day.

1. The Vietnam War was still, in retrospect, a terrible mistake and a disaster for our country, not because we lost it, but because we ever fought it.

2. The Iraq War was sold to me by liars, and I bought it. Now I'm ashamed of myself.

3. No soldier who went to serve our country in any war served in vain. I appreciate their service. It's the decision makers who embarrass us, not the troops.

4. Harlan Woods was an Army Ranger who served in the Pacific in World War II. He came back with malaria, unhappiness, and a story that never got fully told. I think of him.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Crime news

from Smoking Gun: Folks arrested for disorderly conduct. Watch out, it could be you, next.

It's Caturday!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

SCOT: Letter to the Saginaw News

Printed on May 27.

As a Saginaw native and Heritage High School graduate, I do check in on my hometown paper from time to time. It’s a rewarding experience.

A hearty congratulations to your editorial staff for their earnest soldiering in pursuit of a well-mannered and unobtrusive editorial page. While crime and unemployment rage on unpleasantly in the ’hood, your eyes remain fixed on the prize of such trenchant suburban issues as the Chesaning Library, garage sales in Saginaw Township and nettlesome traffic circles (and what a bother they are!).

Not ones to be distracted by graft and corruption, tragedy or injustice, your sharp-eyed editorial writers seize on the transcendent topics of our day: micro-pigs, school budgets and the tuition rates at SVSU. And with such gusto! And yet your staid, reasonable style admirably refrains from employing such gaudy adornments as humor or wit.

I’m glad to see that The Saginaw News refuses to use its editorial pages for offensive material such as strong opinions, sharply-worded critiques or advocacy for the downtrodden. If only your staff could impose similar restraint on the news pages, we could have all of Saginaw County looking like Mayberry again in no time. Bravo!

Thursday Morning Smile-Maker

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

What one Michigan Alum says

I am not a fan of cheating athletic programs. I do not support coaches who cheat and lie. I don't have any idea at this point how much rule breaking has gone on in the football program, but when you start punishing yourself, you are guilty of something more than a mistake here or there.

If this corruption was instigated by the head coach deliberately, he should have been fired last year. I always worried that he cared little for Michigan or its traditions.

a gusher of corruption

An enormous level of governmental corruption is being exposed by the well-earned oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. This is another consequence of treating businesses and corporations as if they were not self-centered and venal. This was called, by Reagan, "getting the government off the back of American business."

The American people were talked into throwing away many of the benefits of the generation of liberal government reforms, starting with the New Deal in the 1930's. Now, our democracy itself is at stake, ravaged by the banks, the financial giants, the oil companies, the health insurance companies, an the corrupt U.S. Congress which caters to them.

Thanks to IRISH MIKE

IRISH MIKE made these pictures and passed them on.

BRAYDEN adds a ton of smiles to Coffee Club

Sandy, Brayden and Leigh

Smiling and eating

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Today's Crime News

Offered by SCOT -- "How did they ever find him? "

Lip tattoo leads to burglary arrest in Colorado

This photo provided by the Pueblo County Sheriff's Office shows Anthony Brandon Gonzales, who was arrested last week in the home invasion of an Elvis impersonator in Pueblo County, Colo.
Pueblo County Sheriff's Office
This photo provided by the Pueblo County Sheriff's Office shows Anthony Brandon Gonzales, who was arrested last week in the home invasion of an Elvis impersonator in Pueblo County, Colo.

Monday, May 24, 2010


CANNES, France -- If you don't quite get what happened to the global economy over the last two years, or who's at fault, you're not alone. Indeed, that's nearly everyone's situation. The big crash of 2008 and 2009 and its ongoing ripple effects -- such as the European fiscal crisis that's rendering my visit to France a little cheaper every day -- seemed to come from nowhere as if by natural causes, as unpredictable and unmanageable as the Icelandic volcano or a Gulf Coast hurricane.

Charles Ferguson is here to tell the world that the crisis that wiped out trillions of dollars in wealth, threw millions of people out of their homes and out of work, and further widened the gulf between rich and poor was no accident. It was a crime. Ferguson, a former software entrepreneur and policy-wonk scholar turned filmmaker, is definitely no left-wing bomb-thrower or closet Marxist. But he plays one in the movies, you might say. His new documentary, "Inside Job" -- arguably the smash hit of Cannes so far -- offers a lucid and devastating history of how the crash happened, who caused it and how they got away with it.

Furthermore, Ferguson argues, if we don't stop those people -- preferably by removing them from power, arresting them and sending them to prison -- they will certainly do it again. "Inside Job" is as elegant, penetrating and well researched as Ferguson's Iraq war film, "No End in Sight," but it's a hell of a lot angrier.

your future

Isn't it a terrible thought that this oil gusher may very possibly never be sealed? It may continue leaking into the Gulf -- for thousands of days, for years.

You can already depend on this: This mess will not be cleaned up in our lifetime. Eventually, it will foul the beaches of Florida, of the Mayan Riveria/Cancun, of Cuba and the Bahamas. The paradise-like islands of the Caribbean may all be smeared.

The Gulf Stream may carry the oil up the east coast. American fisheries will be ruined. The problem has only just begun.

And why should we think that this will, in the fullness of time, not be repeated with other oil rigs in the world?

Mrs. Murphy's chowder

I don't know who the hell Brittany Murphy is, so what would I know about her dead husband? Really, is there such a shortage of news ...

Sunday, May 23, 2010


The Women's National Soccer Team soundly defeated Germany yesterday evening, 4-0. If you have never seen this wonderful team in action, you should do so next time they're on T.V. They are a marvel of athleticism you will not often see in any team at any time in any sport.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

It's Caturday


"Anyone touches that disposal button is going to get scratched!"

Friday, May 21, 2010

friends- snapshots

The day before!

STEVE in his milieu
Environmentally responsible "burning" in Kentucky

"Sisters" -- BRENDA and TRASE

SCOT in his milieu

Thursday, May 20, 2010


I know not a lot of people read my blog, but I want to ask those who do to make a special point of patronizing a very good coffee shop in downtown SAGINAW.

It's across from the Saginaw News building and it's called DAWN OF A NEW DAY. Go. Enjoy.


I am not taking a break from the great happiness I feel these days with the birth of a new grandson. But, I'm still a complicated enough creature to combine that happiness with another instinct or two. One of them is a sense of seething heat.

I feel such anger over the massive destruction of wildlife and the natural environment that has already occurred in the Gulf of Mexico (and which will continue for years). This is not an unexpected calamity. We've all known for years this could happen, but we've proceeded with the ceaseless demand for oil anyway, because the economy we have is so reliant upon it. Rather than change, we want the world to keep the oil coming, no matter where it comes from.

I have not heard anyone from the mindless DRILL BABY DRILL contingent offer even a small concession to the emergency that faces us. My only regret is that this has not happened off Alaska and cannot destroy the economy of Wyoming, from whence the two main "drillers" spring.

So, I'm angry. Fortunately, I do not have to face this monstrous crime eye-to-eye. Pity the innocent people who must. The oil is now reaching the marshes.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Little Quiz

WHO is this lone ranger?

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

We had a very late night last night, attending to a wonderful event in Ann Arbor. We're going back there this morning.

BIRCHES will have to wait.

Monday, May 17, 2010

from Dashmann

Pardon my crude ( no pun intended ) hand sketch, but this old retired engineer was wondering, graphically, just how much of a 21 inch diameter leaking pipe could be sealed or plugged by a 6 inch diameter pipe, as the crews attempting to patch the leaking well in the Gulf of Mexico are attempting to do.

Looks to me like it would be about the same if you broke off one of your house water pipes and then tried to stop that flow by shoving a drinking straw down the leaking pipe !!

What am I missing here??

Is there a further, larger plan this is just a preliminary step to doing ??

Sunday, May 16, 2010

sporting news

Pat has had a horse in every one of the Triple Crown races for many years. She has never won. I blame this on the fact that she doesn't know anything about horses, so there's a racing god who punishes her for her presumption.

Well yesterday was her big chance. She had SUPER SAVER the Kentucky Derby winner. What a surprise! That horse didn't win. It placed 8th just ahead of the one with the dead jockey and the one with only 3 legs.

The lesser gods are not fooled.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Trivia report

Renamed "Witches and Wizards" with some fancy art work from Sharlene (and missing three of our members for a perfectly silly reason), we nevertheless placed third in the TRIVIA CONTEST last night. With special thanks to Jim who knew some pretty impressive trivial facts. I, by the way, was totally buffaloed by some of those categories! And Maria was the life of the Party!

Why is my recollection so slow these years? In fact, it's often just AWOL.


I have a MacIntosh computer. The main Windows app I have on it is Microsoft Office. Every little while, I get a "security" update and have to download some long patch or repair or whatever the hell it is to this Office program, to protect myself against this or that threat. Here's my question:

How the hell did Microsoft get so damned rich?

It's Caturday!

They were trying to hide under a bridge


from Jerry

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Jointly and severally

The companies involved in the building and running of the oil rig that famously blew up and is now threatening to destroy all of mankind, appeared at a hearing in Washington yesterday. They blamed each other, it is reported.

In law, the expression that best fits is "jointly and severally liable." They are all implicated and should share the blame -- and the costs. And if an oil company is exempted, or has its liability limited, go after the remaining parties.

And include the execs of Halliburton, especially Dick Cheney.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

crime news

An officer spoke with a man who was standing in a flower bed.
(Bozeman, Montana)

from The Loyal Opposition

forwarded by BILL J.

Friends- snapshots

Some pix rattling around on my computer:


2. Idle conversation at Dawn's:

3.Leaving for Paris:

4. Marsha in the can:

Sunday, May 9, 2010

some notes on the environment

I really do believe that we are becoming a cleaner nation. In our travels around the country, we've noticed that the roadsides look cleaner, and even cities have less litter. We think there are two reasons. First, education programs have worked on the younger generations and they are much more environmentally conscious than in the past. Second, everywhere there are clubs and organizations which "adopt" stretches of highway to keep cleaner. Thanks, all.

I was asked whether we are boycotting BP because they have fouled the Gulf of Mexico. My attitude is different. So far, BP has taken up its responsibility and is making a convincing effort to solve the crisis. They have pointed out that while they take responsibility for it, there is another company that actually screwed up the drilling. And so far, BP is so much different from Exxon during and after the Alaska "spill". Exxon, as I recall, made every effort to dodge responsibility or payment of costs. BP promises to pay. So, while we are definitely loyal to NO gigantic petroleum outfit, we stopped at some BP stations on our recent trips, and we try never to support any of the old Standard Oil offshoots.

A footnote to the paragraph is this: DRILL BABY DRILL is one of those bone-headed slogans generated by a mindless politician/fool and taken up by partisans, that no one should take seriously in these times of awareness. It's an evil concept.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Friday, May 7, 2010

That Profiling Quiz

I have to admit that I thought the few readers I have would have much more fun with that quiz while I was gone, but that's just one more of my life's misses.

From my perspective, the profiling problem is this: The quiz could not be taken, and no person should have been able to answer it at all, without running a profiling exercise through their heads. In fact, people do "profile" so that it is assumed by everyone, that a terrorist, for example, or a murderer, for example, would not be one of those little girls on the trip to New York with a Girl Scout trip. But, when you do engage in profiling, you end up harassing needlessly, any number --- millions? --- of people whom the government should leave alone, just because they match your parameters. On the other hand, if you suspect no one or everyone, you end up harassing everyone, everyone who wants to board a plane, everyone who wants to walk through Phoenix, everyone who enters the court house, etc., etc. etc.


Lots to catch up on.

I should tell you that taking vacations from retirement is a very good thing.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010


NOTICE: I forgot to mention that the following quiz is cynical and sarcastic, all rolled into one.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


This is a no-profiling quiz.
You are to ascertain the answers to the questions without indulging in profiling.
1. Which of these people is a wealthy New York banker suspected of engineering the bilking of clients?

2. Which is a college LaCrosse player accused of killing his lovely co-ed girlfriend in the most recent, Lovely Co-ed Murder "cause celebre"?

3. Which is suspected of being an illegal Mexican immigrant?

4. Which is a Lovely Co-ed Murder victim in the latest Co-Ed Murder "cause celebre"?

5. Which is a suspected of being a failed terrorist who tried to blow up New York City?

How to ...

This is JON STEWART"S advice on how to fight terrorists without profiling.

"If you see someone, say something!"

Tuesday Morning

It is raining along the Carolina coast this morning. We did not get any of the severe weather that struck to the west of here. The rain is OK. We can still see and hear the sea.

Steve tells me that the advantage of eating Gulf shore seafood is that when you fry it you don't need to put oil in the pan.

Many thanks to everyone who wished me a happy birthday. Who knew I would live this long? Special thanks to my old friend John who kept making phone calls to wish me HB but to Pt's phone which she had turned off.

Monday, May 3, 2010

The Real News

Forwarded by BRUCIE:

I was thinking that with the oil spill and the Times Square "incident" and such, CNN is actually covering some hard news and there doesn't seem to be any room for celebrities today.

not much internet where I am

Here at the beach in S. Carolina, we've been watching the approach of the storms from the West on the TV weather map. Maybe tonight we will a great storm over the ocean. I would like that!

I understand that the petroleum capitalist and "drill baby drillers" are going to destroy the shellfish beds and breeding grounds in the Gulf, so I have been eating as many shrimps as I can in this breathing spell.

Right now I'm in a coffee shop at Lichfield-By-The-Sea, free wi-fi, and trying to catch up on a little of my neglected stuffs.