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Saturday, April 30, 2016

Sinum Conservate! Preserve The Bay!

Brother Alex of the Order of St. Paul of the Settled and the Wild

Every time I come to Maryland, I try to visit the house of the order of St. Paul of the Oikumene (the settled and inhabited areas) and the Antioikumene (the wild areas). Their service is to conserve and keep clean the Chesapeake Bay. So far, they have been focused and successful as a non-profit that receives some State funding, but not directly, as that would violate Church-State separation.

Maryland and Virginia have found that a religious order, non-profit, seems to be more effective than the previous short term and cyclical efforts to clean and re-clean the Bay.

The House of St. Paul, The Settled and the Wild, Tilghman Island, MD

Friday, April 29, 2016

Maryland's Adultery Law

It is still a crime to commit adultery in Maryland. It is also difficult to get a divorce in Maryland; you need grounds and it takes about 2 years to accomplished fact. So if you are tarrying with friends of the opposite sex while you wait for your divorce, you may commit the crime of adultery.

All of which raised in my mind the question that if the State would define Marriage and the State would define Adultery, then how does the State define liaisons between people of the same sex?
I mean, if you had a same-sex marriage foundering on the rocks of discord, and the principals had a dalliance here and there, would that be adultery?
If so. the State would not only have re-defined marriage but also have re-defined adultery from ancient prescriptions of many years ago.


The Relativity Of The Zika Virus

Senator Mitch McConnell, Republican

I had a post about Zika virus in which the Republican Party in control of the House and Senate had decided to drag their feet on any funding to combat the sickness under a lame-duck president.

As it has so far turned out, the Republican controlled Congress has managed to adjourn for 10 days without funding research to comb ate the disease.

The Atlantic
...In early February, the Obama administration asked Congress to quickly pass nearly $1.9 billion in emergency funds. It trotted out public-health officials to explain what they knew about the virus’s potential effect in the Americas, and what they needed to develop: a vaccine, top-flight diagnostic tests, rapid-response teams for any Zika clusters that pop up in the United States, among other measures.

So far, Congress hasn’t allocated any new money. The White House grudgingly repurposed about $600 million in Ebola funds for Zika earlier this month, at House Republicans’ urging, but the administration and public-health officials maintain much more is needed. The number of cases in the continental United States and in the territories continues to grow. Scientists have confirmed the virus causes the birth defect microcephaly and the immune disorder Guillain-Barré, and are investigating a link between Zika and brain and spinal-cord infections. Officials are also concerned about the coming warmer months, particularly in warm-weather states. “Everything we look at with this virus seems to be a bit scarier than we initially thought,” said Anne Schuchat, the CDC’s principal deputy director, at a White House briefing two weeks ago.

Congressional Republicans have said for weeks now that their questions on Zika funding haven’t been answered—an allegation the White House and Senate Democrats have refuted. Specifically, Republicans say they need to know how much money is needed before the 2016 fiscal year ends in late September; how much is needed in fiscal year 2017; and, of course, how exactly it’ll be spent. John Cornyn, the Senate Majority Whip, cautioned Thursday against writing a “blank check” to the administration without hearing the Zika “plan of attack.”

Democrats have condemned the standstill. “Too many of my colleagues on the other side of the aisle still don’t seem to see Zika as an emergency,” Senator Patty Murray, the ranking member on the Senate Labor/HHS subcommittee, said Thursday. Some Republicans think it can wait “weeks, or even months,” she added. “Republicans in Congress might be able to wait that long—but families across the country simply can’t.”
“We shouldn't be taking 10 days off as a dangerous virus threatens this nation,” Reid said.

Members of the House GOP have been especially, and predictably, hawkish about how money is doled out. House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy has said the administration has enough money for Zika as it is. Some have suggested more money can be gleaned from Ebola coffers, and House Speaker Paul Ryan has said the White House has “a bit of a track record of over-requesting what they need.” Representative Tom Cole seemed to push back Thursday on the notion that Republicans are unnecessarily blocking funds. “I want to remind the White House, it was a Republican Congress that appropriated everything and more to combat Ebola just last year,” said Cole, the chairman of the House Appropriations subcommittee that finances public-health agencies, in a statement. “It was a Republican Congress that provided double the increase in funds for the National Institutes of Health requested by the White House. And it was a Republican Congress that appropriated more for the Centers for Disease Control than the White House requested.”

The debate in the Senate didn’t look so dire last week. After months of no movement, lawmakers appeared to have a modest breakthrough: Senate appropriators announced at a markup meeting that they were closing in on a Zika deal. But the chief negotiators, Murray and Missouri Republican Roy Blunt, still needed to accomplish two difficult tasks: settling on an exact dollar figure and determining how to get the funding through Congress...

Things to note:
In the second paragraph, there was re-purposing of $600 million in Ebola funds for Zika. What I would like to know at this point is where is the research at into the viability of the Ebola virus which was discovered within the past 5 months living in the eyeballs of people who had recovered from Ebola? Is the virus still alive anywhere else in the bodies of the people? What is the possibility of another epidemic arising from these sources, and would the extra Ebola funding have possibly helped to stop such a possibility?

Representative Tom Cole in paragraph 5 seems to think that what was done in the past against Ebola is a gold star for the Republicans for the present Zika.

After 10 days, they will be back to afflict us with as much venom as they afflict us with their absence.

10 days from the point of view of a Republican legislator is a wink of the eye, whereas from the viewpoint of a pregnant mother in her first trimester, it is an eternity.

[Our Age of Irony!
Once again we see people that preach family values and the protection of children actively position themselves against the integrity of the family and the welfare of children!]

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Big Ted Cruz Announcement !!

Ted Cruz announced that is he were to be elected president, he would put Carly Fiorina's face on the $20 bill. She is the only person I ever saw who looked more severe than Harriet Tubman.


Wednesday, April 27, 2016

New Mommies' Exercise

I just walked a fretful Mary Olivia Adenike around the kitchen, front hall, and dining room for about 2 hours this morning. I was surprised I did not seem to have my usual aches and pains.

However, this marathon gave me an idea for a exercise manual for new parents, one exercise of which should be:

Pick up the 12-pound weights,
walk 100 feet,
do 10,000 reps.


I Know For Whom I'm Voting

And it is not Hilary Clinton. I will write in Sanders name if I must, or I shall vote Green, but I cannot morally cast a vote for that atrocious person. She and her amoral husband will go down in infamy into history.

I mean, they are only amiable and friendly and supportable in their contrast to the viciously ignorant Republican crowd that has festered in the nation's capitol for so long... not all Republicans, just the know-nothings, the covert racists, the intellectually bankrupt.

I was reading about her debate with Bernie in New York back two weeks ago:

Defending Attack on Libya, Clinton Blames Obama—And Suggests Repeat for Syria
During a heated Democratic debate in New York on Thursday night, Hillary Clinton sought to both defend and deflect responsibility for her central role in destabilizing Libya—by blaming President Barack Obama.

"The decision was the president's," she said in response to criticism from rival Bernie Sanders over her leadership as then-Secretary of State during the 2011 military intervention to overthrow Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi.

"Did I do due diligence? Did I talk to everybody I could talk to? Did I visit every capitol and then report back to the president? Yes, I did. That's what every secretary of state does," Clinton said. "But at the end of the day, those are the decisions that are made by the president to in any way use American military power, and the president made that decision, and yes, we did try without success because of the Libyans' obstruction to our efforts, but we did try and will continue to try to help the Libyan people."

The remarks come just days after Obama admitted in an interview with Fox News that "failing to plan for the day after" Gaddafi's toppling was the "worst mistake" of his presidency.

In a previous debate, Clinton said the president had made "the right decision at the time" and blamed the instability that followed on the Arab Spring and "a lot of other things." ...

This is the same Hilary Clinton who in an interview laughingly said, "We came, we saw, he died."
The very same person.
Look at the video of her laughing:

Let's run a duelling videos selection of Gadhaffi's last minutes alive Hilary's laughter and do it over and over until we're sick of both of them. It won't tale long. Gadhaffi was a wretch who killed people and Hilary created Syria, although she is trying to pretend she did not.
...Clinton responded with both another seeming criticism of Obama—and by suggesting regime change in Syria.

"Yes, when I was secretary of state, I did urge along with the Department of Defense and the CIA that we seek out, vet, and train, and arm Syrian opposition figures so that they could defend themselves against [President Bashar al] Assad. The president said no."

"I think it's only fair to look at where we are in Syria today and yes, I do still support a no-fly zone because I think we need to put in safe havens for those poor Syrians who are fleeing both Assad and ISIS and so they have some place they can be safe," she said. "Nobody stood up to Assad and removed him, and we have a far greater disaster in Syria than we are currently dealing with right now in Libya."
 She admits her role in the disaster.
And President Obama in the first quote admits that he and his administration - which therefore includes Hilary Clinton - did not plan for Libya after Gadhaffi, even though they have the 10 year plus horrible example of an Iraq War which did not plan for life after Saddam Hussein!!

Even if President Obama could run for a third term, I do not think I would vote for him.
We need something else.


Friday, April 22, 2016


I have gotten tired of the word "hiatus".
I mean, all the blogs I view whose authors have neglected their postings usually have a self-serving notice that they've been busy or they've been on hiatus or are soon gonna be on hiatus or are fixin' to go on hiatus.

I've been on hiatus for a bit merely because I have lost interest in my thoughts and ideas. If they do not interest me, I certainly am not going to serve my Peloponnesian ideas up to you like some ghastly feast of Tantalus....




Why is "Peloponnesian" spelled with a double "n"?
 I mean, "Pelops: is the guy's name, and "nesos" for "island" has but one single "n".

I thought maybe the genitive of Pelops might have an "n" and I'll have to look kit up, but most -ops words don't have an "n" pop up in the genitive... I think.

It Takes A Village To ...

PBS NewsHour:
‘Sesame Street’ moves to HBO, with re-airs on PBS
After calling PBS home for 45 years, HBO is now how you first get to “Sesame Street.”

Sesame Workshop, the non-profit group that produces the show, announced Thursday that the next five seasons of the popular educational children’s show will start premiering this fall on the premium cable network, famous for adult dramas such as “The Sopranos” and “Game of Thrones,” and made available to all its streaming services.

The five-year deal allows HBO to widen its programming to include a long-running and prestigious children’s show, while Sesame Workshop will be able to produce twice as much content each year.

The deal doesn’t mean “Sesame Street” has abandoned its PBS roots. The new episodes will be available to PBS and its member stations, free of charge, after a nine-month delay...

It takes a whole village to PAY to raise a child...

Premium channel HBO? If you can afford premium HBO, you can afford an au pair to nanny and tutor your child.
As far as the re-airings on PBS after 9 months, I guess we'll see about that.

I do not think my sour grapes on this news is just being a curmudgeon; I think our society lacks the imagination and drive to provide essential services for child upbringing at no cost for all people for the long term. This includes not only education, but also such things as paid 6 month leave for new parents, and a real commitment to eliminate child abuse.

Oh, we are committed to eliminating child abuse?!

I'm sorry. I guess I got a different idea from looking at all those Syrian kids washing up on the shores of the Mediterranean, and NATO's thinking that things will improve by paying off the nouveau tyrant Erdogan, who will probably apply a variant of the Armenian Solution to this problem.


Wednesday, April 06, 2016

Family Values In Republican Florida

“They are Man's,” said the Spirit, looking down upon them. “And they cling to me, appealing from their fathers. This boy is Ignorance. This girl is Want. Beware them both, and all of their degree

Florida pledges better health care for poor children to settle lawsuit
Wednesday, April 6, 2016 Reuters
(Reuters) – Florida officials will boost access to health and dental care for poor children in settlement of an 11-year-old class-action lawsuit, the groups behind the legal action said on Tuesday.

The lawsuit, filed in 2005, accused Florida officials of failing to pay doctors enough for treating 2 million children with government-supported health coverage, adding that this discouraged physicians from providing their services.

The settlement calls for Florida to increase payments to physicians who treat poor children and sets benchmarks for preventative and dental treatment to be met over five years, according to the Philadelphia-based Public Interest Law Center, which represented the plaintiffs.

Florida health officials and attorneys for the plaintiffs, among them the Florida chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, were ordered to negotiate a settlement after a U.S. district judge in December 2014 found Florida fell short of federal standards for providing healthcare to poor children.

Nearly 80 percent of children with government-supported healthcare in Florida were never able to see a dentist, the judge said in his ruling.

The agreement marks a “significant step forward in improving access to medical care” for poor children in Florida, Tommy Schechtman, president of the Florida chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, said in a statement.

An official of the Florida Agency for Healthcare Administration could not be reached for comment late on Tuesday.

"Are there no prisons?"
"And the Union workhouses... Are they still in operation?"
"The Treadmill and the Poor Law are in full vigour, then?"


Tuesday, April 05, 2016

Labyrinthine Ways

 Bonnie Blue Butler

Irregular, twisting, and convoluted ways they are...
I believe this was intended to the title of Graham Greene's novel The Power And The Glory, but there was a sea change from the inscrutable workings of the divine to the potency and awesomeness of those workings. Interesting.

There was a story that was similarly interesting:
The Guardian
‘Disgusting’ trolls target family of girl, 9, killed on Cotswold hunt
Horseriders unite in support of family of Bonnie Armitage, whose accidental death was called ‘karma’ by anti-bloodsports activist
Horseriders have criticised comments on a hunt saboteur Facebook group about the death of a nine-year-old girl in a riding accident.

Online trolls claimed Bonnie Armitage’s death on Saturday was “karma” because she was riding with the Cotswold hunt.

Bonnie died in hospital after the accident in Miserden, near Stroud, Gloucestershire, when she was kicked by a horse as she rode her pony.

Her death has hit the equestrian community hard. Fellow riders are showing their support for her family by posting photographs on Facebook of themselves wearing something blue, Bonnie’s favourite colour.

Lucy Barnett posted a picture of her horse and wrote: “Such a tragedy to hear we’ve lost another devoted young rider. Bonnie was just nine years old and was killed by a fateful kick whilst out hunting doing what she loved the most.

“It’s heartbreaking to hear, such sad news. My condolences to her friends and family.”

Stacey Williamson wrote on Twitter: “#blueforbonnie lets show Bonnie’s parents there is so much more support behind them than there is vile trolls.”

Williamson was responding to posts on a Facebook page for hunt saboteurs, where one person said: “Karma. Hopefully the parents don’t indulge in such a disgusting vile pass time any more [sic].”

Another wrote: “Fox 1 - 0 Murderous parents.”

And a third post said: “Tragic and unnecessary but nothing good comes from bloodlust how different it would be if her parents hadn’t put her at risk.”,,,

First, come down angel band, come and around her stand and bear her away on snow white wings to her immortal home.  That is what I said when I read this.

Then, this whole nonsense about SOCIAL media is more technological claptrap. There is nothing social about it. There is no society with people who are so obsessed with their own beliefs that they celebrate the death of an innocent.
Back before computers, to regale ourselves with such misanthropic trolls and their words, we would need to have gone to bars and pubs in the absolutely sketchiest parts of the metropolis. Now, in our Brave New World, we have them right in our studies and bedrooms and living rooms on the computer.

The Bar Room into the Living Room...
Is there any wonder that the USA Republican Party's primary has on live TV and Twitter engorged itself in discussions about sexuality in all its forms?!
If you don't know what I'm talking about, I remind you that Mr. Trump led the charge by referring to Ms. Kelly's time of the month.

This led to comparing male body parts and then to aspersions about the wives...........

However, the most ghastly thread that runs through it all is the fact that Scarlett O'Hara's and Rhett Butler's  child was Bonnie Blue Butler, and the names Bonnie are the same and their loves of Blue are comparable. Then they were both killed in accidents while riding horses.

Bonnie Armitage

The Universe is smaller than you think. We run in tight circles to our fate.


Thursday, March 24, 2016

Truffles And Trump

 Rupert Murdoch and FOX Sniffing Out Dangers to the Republic

Half of the Republican Party thinks Mr. Trump is the horn which Gabriel blows at midnight, the other half thinks he's not all that bad.
Ditto the media. I mean, FOX News has trash-canned that whole business of "Fair and Balanced" as of the first attack on one of their blonde anchorpersons. The Huffington Post Real Estate section runs a disturbing little denial at the end of any news articles that mentions Chicago's Trump Tower stating that Mr. Trump is a fascist scoundrel.

I think that is taking journalism to the bridge too far, to the narcissistic road not [hitherto] taken. I mean, because of Mr. Trump, journalists of all stripes have laid aside their differences and agreed upon one thing: they - the journalists - are much smarter than the rest of us, and they have the uncanny ability to sniff out the rotted truffles of fascism!

Is he a demagogue?
And why - exactly - is demagoguery so evil?
Huey Long was a demagogue, and he accomplished things for the people of Louisiana which would have taken regular politicians a couple of centuries to get around to. It seems that if you think it is possible that the deck is stacked against us and in favor of the rich and powerful, then it stands to reason that you are going to back a guy who will be very "innovative" when it comes to getting things done.

It is a dream, and even if Mr. Trump were elected, he would find the deck stacked against him.


The 3rd Party Wheeze is going to be the long term effect of all this anyway.
Hitherto, all the disaffected members of the GOP and Independents and Democrats who like their politics with some real spice that gives them heat, and not just to the rich, will have a national face around which to cluster.
They did not have a spokesman before... or a "bespokes-man" either.

The Fiscal Times
Forget Trump: Here's Who's Really Destroying the Republican Party
The seminal event in the crackup of the Republican Party is not the rise of Donald Trump as their presidential nominee, contrary to popular opinion. It was the overthrow of John Boehner as Speaker of the House. That showed the power of the forty-odd members of the House Freedom Caucus, and their incompatibility with the GOP establishment and the compromises required by divided government (or for that matter, math).

The change in leadership at the top has not bridged this divide. Despite months of happy talk, the Freedom Caucus rejected Paul Ryan’s budget resolution, likely leaving the Republicans with no budget this year, after they made returning to regular order a campaign promise in 2014. The lack of a budget is just a sidelight to the continuing irreconcilable differences between conservative factions. Trump will not be able to fix this either; only a purge of one side of the party or the other would.

The Freedom Caucus essentially wants to control government from a base of 40 members of the House, with only a few allies in the Senate and no president willing to agree to their demands. They want to defund Planned Parenthood, balance the budget through massive spending cuts, dismantle government healthcare programs, and overturn every executive order of the past eight years, regardless of not having the two-thirds support in Congress that would be required currently to override Obama vetoes and make that happen...
(emphasis mine)
 I wrote 2 weeks ago about getting 50 seats in the House. See? It is feasible.

Just remember the famous quote of Santayana:

"The truffle slicing mandolins of the gods slice slowly... but they slice very thin!!"


The Risks Of The Modern Democracy

Boaty.... if the Voters Get Their Way

Boaty McBoatface debacle shows the perils of crowdsourcing opinion: From Hooty McOwlface to Mr Splashy Pants
​When a poll suggested that a new ship be called 'Boaty McBoatface', it was just the latest strike in the risky business of 'ask the public' PR.
Simon Usborne Tuesday 22 March 2016
It wasn't necessarily a silly question, but in a nation of bored people genetically programmed to take the piss, it was perhaps predictable that it might invite a silly answer. So it was that a nice idea became a global public relations headache when the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) asked: “What shall we call our fancy new boat?”

At the time of writing, the website built by the science body to host the competition to name its £200m polar research vessel had sunk without a trace, inundated as it was with votes for Boaty McBoatface, the submission of a former local radio presenter. As America may yet learn, democracy can be a risky way to get things done...

Then today
Trainy McTrainface saluted by commuters after locomotive homage to Boaty McBoatface at Waterloo
Name change intended to bring a ‘smile to the face of customers’
Kayleigh Lewis
A railway worker renamed Tuesday’s Portsmouth to Waterloo service Trainy McTrainface in a playful homage to Boaty McBoatface.

The temporary renaming of the 0729 South West Trains service was a response to the Boaty McBoatface debacle, which saw the National Environment Research Council (NERC) allow the public to vote on the title of a new £200m state-of-the-art research vessel.

“It is a one-off by one of our creative guards who wanted to bring a smile to the face of our customers,” a spokesperson from the railway company said of the hat-tip...

Didnt expect my train to have a name today @SW_Trains #trains
— Matthew Fifield (@funfield5) March 22, 2016

He told the Evening Standard: "My trains were all delayed today so it brightened my morning to see it."
It also brought cheer to many other commuters, who took to social media to "salute" the temporary renaming.

Bravo the member of South West staff at Waterloo. Trainy McTrainface.
— Harry Wallop (@hwallop) March 22, 2016...

However, ... it fell behind schedule.

are you sure about Trainy McTrainface @SW_Trains ..... surely Latey McLateface is more appropriate?
— Lee Mark Davies (@LeeMarkDavies) March 22, 2016


Wednesday, March 23, 2016

What's Up With Mawra?

Mawra Hocane

What kind of a name is Hocane? There is a story behind it.

The Express Tribune
Unraveling the mystery: Here's why Mawra and Urwa's surname is 'Hocane'
 It’s just a different way to spell… Hussain...

“I changed the spelling of my surname name when I was in the seventh grade back when I had no idea it would become so famous one day that people would start asking questions about it,” Mawra disclosed to The Express Tribune.

“I knew my first name was unique because people always asked me what it meant. But in my class, a lot of students had the same surname: Hussain. It’s silly but I was very little then and I wanted my surname to be unique too. So I changed the spelling and started writing is as Hocane,” she added. “I thought people would pronounce the ‘C’ as ‘S’, like in Celina and never thought people would pronounce it ‘Hu-Can’ and not Hussain. But that obviously never happened.” ...

However, nothing is quite so simple.
Yesterday, the hashtag #AskMawra was trending on Twitter. And the bubbly Mawra Hocane fell victim to cyber-bullying.
Why don't you write in "Hussain" in straight style. . . Why this ajeeb "Hocane" ? ? ? #AskMawra

  • Samad Aslam Khan@SamadAslamKhan 15h15 hours ago
    @ZulfiqarAnsari One should be proud of having such names in their Full Name instead of being afraid

    Likes like a lot of brothers dumping on the sisters again.

    If Hocane is ajeeb, it is a wonderfully beautiful ajeeb!  And  'azeez!



    This tweet met with these responses:

    and it is a pretty good new mini-literary genre.

    So I gave it a try:

     Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Cap of the Bengladesh 11

    I confronted a Muslim Bengladeshi cricket player, home captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni, to explain the cricket match in Bengaluru, India.
    Bengladesh, chasing 147 for victory in the Group Two match, and making a perfect start, then lost three wickets off the final three deliveries, allowing a jubilant India team to scrape over the line to climb to second in the table!

    He said "In a situation like this it's literally chaos,” said captain Dhoni.
    “What you're trying to do is trying to manage chaos. You have to assess everything but it has to happen in a short span of time.”

    A mealy mouthed reply.
    — Montag@(whatever) March 23, 2016

     It lacks something.

    Technical Words

    What do you call compounds words? And, in particular, what do you call them when you just sort of make them up on the fly: like, what would you call "words-made-up-on-the-fly-or-by-the-seat-of-one's-pants" if you wanted to use it in a post?

    We have portmanteau words, and we've already added "club bag" words, but this is different.

    I just call them maggeph  -
    (pronounced maq-qef', with the q being a k in the back of the throat).  Or  mah-keff ', if you will.

    I really do not know the English technical term.
    I looked it up, and only found "compound words". How bloodless compared to maggeph!

    Then I found:
    The “-” sign is not a dash, but a hyphen. Words that contain one or more hyphens are said to be hyphenated.

    Dashes of various length are used in English writing: “–” is an en dash, and “—” is an em dash. Their names (en and em) are those of typographic units of measurements. The former is used in particular to separate dates in ranges (“Lee, Bruce (1941–73)”), and the latter is used to indicate a break of thought or an unfinished sentence.
    I think I have come across these in Word and maybe Blogger, but the difference does not seem to be as large as that shown above, and to be very honest, a few micromillimeters difference in a linear stroke of black on a white background is an area of research for Particle Physics Ph.D.s, not for me to be trying to read.


    Chasing The Panther


    the power of Wu-Tang.


    Tuesday, March 22, 2016

    It's A Good Life, Topper!

    Can Anthony Come Out and Play, Mr. Fremont?

    The Twilight Zone.
    The Twilight Zone episode, It's A Good Life, with Billy Mumy wishing people who crossed him out into the cornfield or where ever.
    I got to thinking about it. Actually I was wondering about a time-line in an alt-Universe where Rod Serling and Robert Sterling trade places in utero, as it were. (I almost wrote " utero as it weretero!!?" Gadfry Daniels!)

    Thus, Topper would have a rather sinister George Kirby playing off "the ghostess with the mostes' !" Marion Kirby, as played by Anne Jeffreys.
    And Leo G. Carroll would be a lot more respectful when he started in on his "George! Marion!" invocations.

    front: Leo G. Carroll, Lee Patrick
    rear: Anne Jeffreys, Robert Sterling

    The dog is Neill.

    And it follows then that Twilight Zone with Robert Sterling would be a little more up-beat and martini-laden. And instead of wishing a jack-in-the-box-pox upon gents who crossed him, Billy Mumy, as Anthony Fremont, might be merely wishing them late to the board of directors meeting, hungover and asleep in the classic roadster parked on Wall Street in a No Standing zone!


    Continuous Transportation: Off-Road Trucking

    Un État de Transport Continu
    inspiré par le film Transperceneige

    Cook House of Stevensons Brothers Circus in 1946  by Robert D. Good

    Copyright Jim Linderman 


    The Marquis de Sade Revisited

    Donatien Alphonse François de Sade

    The drawing of the Marquis de Sade shows the intensity of madness, not intelligence. He rubs his hand and it stands out like a hand of glory, does it not? A hand of glory that persists in our imaginations, magick, magick limb!

    I was reading The Maverick Philosopher:
    Callicles as Precursor of De Sade
    At Gorgias 492, tr. Helmbold, the divine Plato puts the following words into the mouth of Callicles:

    A man who is going to live a full life must allow his desires to
    become as mighty as may be and never repress them. When his
    passions have come to full maturity, he must be able to serve them
    through his courage and intelligence and gratify every fleeting
    desire as it comes into his heart.

    [. . .]

    The truth, which you claim to pursue, Socrates, is really this:
    luxury, license, and liberty, when they have the upper hand, are
    really virtue, and happiness as well; everything else is a set of
    fine terms, man-made conventions, warped against nature, a pack of
    stuff and nonsense!

    Now let us consider what the decidedly undivine Marquis de Sade has Mme. Delbene say in Julliette or Vice Amply Rewarded:

    . . . I am going to dismiss this equally absurd and childish obligation which enjoins us not to do unto others that which unto us we would not have done. It is the precise contrary Nature recommends, since Nature's single precept is to enjoy oneself, at the expense of no matter whom...

    To me, de Sade is the story of the wastrel French aristocracy before the Revolution, not philosophy. Only the wealthy would have the time and money to expend in endless debauchery, and only the perversely wealthy would seek to maintain a social inequality which allowed them to imprison the majority of the population in powerless squalor - the better position from which to abuse them.

    The story repeats.

    The film Spotlight which retold the Boston Globe's exposure of the Bishop of Boston's cover-up of abuse was all about predatory power and position, was it not? And the rising gap between the rich and the not-rich will lead us into a future of even newer perversions concocted by our new technologies and philosophies, will it not?

    The post ends:
    The natural man, in the grip of his lusts, is a natural sophist: what can be done is eo ipso permissible to do. Reason in a philosopher without God easily becomes unhinged.

    And we have been here recently. Eo Ipso - by that very fact - that is, by the very fact that something may be done implies necessarily that it is permissible to do that something. Not that it should be done, but it may be done without crime. (I am not clear on the concept "natural man", but I believe it is a topic much delved into by those heavy with the grey-matter.)

    The very fact that one may abuse or rape, that one may wage wars based on funky ideologies, that one may cut down rain forests or pollute the waterways for profit... the fact that these things are possible have made them become legitimate pursuits in our present society over the past century or longer.

    We are the heedless aristocrats.
    It reminds me of the film The Aristocrats: an insane repetition of scatology......


    So It Begins...

    picture: Rico


    The State Of The Republican Party


    Monday, March 21, 2016

    Omnium And Gatherum March 21 2016

    Quicken Arena, Cleveland

    The Hypocrisy of Gun Carry Laws, etc.

    It seems that most politicians that support open-carry laws in theory oppose those laws when it comes to venues and meetings where they themselves are going to be in a crowd of just good old folks.
    I believe this phenomenon is what Aunt Sally was referring to when she said that the "proof is in the pudding".

    Down With Tyranny
    Gun Fight At Cleveland's Quicken Loans Arena In July? Maybe Not
    Wednesday, February 03, 2016
    ...Sure, sure, we all know the NRA-shilling GOP claims everyone is safer if people carry guns everywhere (except in Congress). But... apparently, despite Ohio's concealed carry law-- yes you can brings guns into a bar-- Republican delegates will not be allowed to bring guns into the July convention...

    The Brainwashing of America
    ...GOP continues to unravel, in both its Presidential nomination process and its increasingly untenable stand against even holding a hearing for Obama's US Supreme Court nominee.
    Brad Friedman 18:38 18.03.2016
    ... I'm joined by documentary filmmaker Jen Senko to discuss her new film, The Brainwashing of My Dad. The documentary details both the rise of the Rightwing media in the US over the past several decades and her own father's disturbing transition from a peaceful, loving Democrat into a hostile, angry 'conservative' after becoming addicted and, yes, brainwashed by Rush Limbaugh, Fox "News" and the rest of the "vast Rightwing conspiracy" machine that has torn apart so many families like her own.

    While the film's tagline is "The truth behind the right-wing media machine that changed a father…and divided the nation," an alternative version for so many who will recognize, within their own families, the story of what happened to Senko's father, might have been: "You are not alone!" "When I started the Kickstarter campaign" for the film, she tells me, "people just started writing me every day, with these heartbreaking stories about so-and-so in their family wouldn't speak to them anymore, or they couldn't talk about anything without them getting angry. It was really shocking. That's when I realized what a phenomenon it was." ...

    Again a reference to a "house divided", just as in the first item above.


    Moral Absolutes In Mel Gibson's Apocalypto

    I received a comment from Anonymous on an old post about Mel Gibson's great film, Apocalypto:

    Well, I think Durant's quote has moral sense as well. A society that loses its moral bearings loses its direction. If right and wrong become relative to personal interpretation, then there can be no unifying principle to hold the civilization together. It is a "house divided against itself."  There is no truth or fairness in trade, respecting the elders, or loving ones neighbor. Every man is a law unto himself. on Mel Gibson's Apocalypto and Will Durant
    So I had to actually stop and think.
    First, it immediately brings to mind ancient writings from Ancient Egypt's Time of Troubles, which I think preceded the Middle Kingdom after the breakdown of the old Kingdom. When I start thinking about something, I usually start around Ancient Egypt, although sometimes I start back in the ancient Sahara desert at a time when there were numerous paleo-lakes and greenery where there now is only sand. I definitely do not go back to the Big Bang.

    The business about each man being a law unto himself brings to mind gun laws and stand-your-ground laws, indicating that the moral breakdown of any society - not just ours - may actually be surprisingly enough a normative breakdown! That is, moral failure may be promulgated by a society's laws.
    The fact that these laws probably were designed to prevent social breakdown adds a layer of irony to the murky business.


    However, I mentioned that I perceived the problem in Apocalypto to be not a lose of moral bearings, but a radical adoption of pernicious norms: the tribe taking slaves for sacrifice has committed itself to a vile and baneful course of action with a unanimity of evil darkness that is portrayed in overwhelming color and detail!

    Nobody lives without moral bearings.
    What is important is the Story of Morals that we have learned since childhood: is it supportive, is it nurturing, does it inculcate virtue and not moral weakness and indulgence?
    And what of the Training in Morals? Do we all "walk the walk" and not merely "talk the talk"?

    And most importantly, can we distinguish between Good and Evil?
    Even in an Age of Political Correctness, the religious rituals of the Central American tribes as portrayed in the film Apocalypto must deserve the name of perniciously vile and evil practices, not merely because of the suffering and death, but because of the extra-human and inhuman scale at which they take place, a scale which seeks to maximize the negative emotional powers available in the awe inspired by naked evil!

    If there were no God, then everything would not be allowed!
    If there were no God, we would have the added burden of being virtuous as well as proofing our own moral code.
    So much of the pain of the 20th and 21st century has been due to the illogical conclusion that mankind is not innately moral, and this is due to the fact that the quest for Good is so difficult and time-consuming that we choose not to do it.
    Rather, we accept our morals ready-made from someone else. That someone else could be anyone, even Jim Jones of Jonestown.


    Sunday, March 20, 2016

    Republicans Have No Good Options

     Abe's Grill where Rufus Hasp Launched his Congressional Campaign

    Other than voting for Ted Cruz, as Mitt Romney swears that he will. A man who was a Senate pariah is now their best choice. Excellent. Do they have any idea how lame that makes them appear to be?
    Perhaps if Mr. Cruz is elected president the government may actually be shut down for an extended period... except for a war here and there.
    Everything else could just fall into dust.

    Previously although the right-wing radicals of the Republican Party, the so-called Tea Party (originally Tea Baggers, if you can believe it!) has had money and support, they have had no national face, no leader on the national stage.
    Now they do.
    If Mr. Trump gets enough delegates, yet the Republican establishment deny him the nomination, then the Republican Party will lose at least 15% to 23% of its voters.

    In the future, they will work on the state level and in certain areas, they will be very successful. Then when the national contests come again, they will be still be around and they will have a national leadership to coalesce about.

    Of course, there is the further scary scenarios of third-party candidates and a socialist on the Democratic ticket, resulting in nobody getting enough electoral college votes. This would throw the presidential race into the House of Representatives to decide, and the honorable Rufus T. Hasp would have his 4 years in the sun.


    Vatican Observatory

    Vatican Observatory in its Early Years

    The Vatican Observatory celebrated its 125th anniversary on March 14. It was established by Pope Leo XIII on 14 March, 1891, when he promulgated the motu proprio ( i.e., of his own accord, on his own impulse) Ut Mysticam establishing it.

    On another note about the Church and Science, the cosmological theory which is today known as The Big Bang was set forth by the Jesuit priest, Fr. Georges Lemaître, who was a pioneer in applying Einstein's Theory of Relativity to cosmology.


    My Sunday Best... And Nowhere To Go...


    Contemporanea 1922

    Volume 1 Number 1   May  1922

    I am looking into some history of Portugal's newspapers at the end of World War I, an so I came across this.


    Friday, March 18, 2016


    The photo above was from my condo on March 1, 2016  at 5:15 PM. It was a proper wintry day, and I took a certain amount of satisfaction in it. I mean, what is winter without the wind? Without the snow? Without the dark days?

    And this was yesterday

    on a street nearby. I took this because of the clouds and the moon. (The moon is a faint white spot which can be located by looking at the pole in the middle of the photo, going straight up about 6/8 of an inch and then left an inch.)
    It was warmish; maybe about 48 F at the time. Windy a bit. The windiest day is Wednesday, which is garbage day, and all the garbage can blow about and the trash receptacles get to run around and take off from their owners. Every Wednesday.

    A Nor'easter threatens the East Coast, and will - if given half a chance - freeze the baby cherry blossoms in Washington D.C. which, if left unthreatened, would be peaking about next Thursday. This extra-tropical cyclone will not make it to where we live, so we shall go to it and visit Mary Olivia Adenike since we have not seen her in a couple weeks.
    She is much alert now. She will probably see us and be excited, saying something like,

    "Who are the two old numbers?" 

    I took the flannel sheets off the bed for the last time until next winter. I also looked up some information on lawn mowers, the best type to buy, pro and con. I will be looking to buy some cordgrass for bank stabilization at Harsens Island again. Here's the Google Earth shot of the place:

    It is the grey roof in the left-center. There is just over 15,000 square feet of lawn, which puts me into the "under 1/2 acre" group for lawn-mower hunting. There is a dock - which runs into the Google earth logo - which is maintenance needy. Our waterfront property on the south (towards the bottom of the photo) ends at the large foliage cluster of the trees my father used to call "river birches".
    They were not birches. I think we looked them up and they were some sort of larch or alder. I have forgotten, so I just call them river birches. You cannot appreciate how large they have become in this photo.

    Here's a photo of the place awaiting what Winston Churchill would have called "The Gathering Storm". The river birches are not visible.

    My father always complained about neighbors who had things that would block his view of the river. If you look north of the dock in the Google earth photo, you will see a smallish dab of green foliage, which is a red maple sprout on the lot of the neighbor on the north. My father used to mutter about this tree at times.
    I would ask him about the river birches, which were about 30 times more effective in obstructing lines of sight of anyone downstream, and he would say that he asked everybody down there, and they said they could see just fine.

    And two houses or so further north is the spot where an enormous boathouse was to be constructed back in 1988. A lot of the structure had gone up and it completely obliterated the view upriver. So my father wrote to the District Office of the Army Corps of Engineers, who were in charge of such things on the waterways of the USA.
    Well, the boathouse did not comply with the Corps and the owner had to take it down.

    All that is left of the once lofty and magnificent structure is a measly little dock with two large boat wells....

    ... oh, and an extremely cute Tiki bar, which I call Swigwam North in homage to the real Swigwam on St. Pete's Beach. If you look closely at the south (the bottom of the photo) boat well, which is unoccupied, you might see some sort of spikey thingies on the dock. Those are palms trees, swaying in the breezes and keeping time to the ukelele music.
    I can tell you I always wanted to go there and sit at the bar. We go right by it when we start out canoeing on our way to Big Pee and Little Pee islands... 

    As time heals all wounds, so it did mend the fences and obliterate memories from the disputes of 20 plus years ago or more. Before my father passed away, he met the lady who lived at the house to which the Swigwam was a powerful Tiki adjunct, and they had a nice discussion about islandy type things. Things seemed pretty cozy after all.

    As he told us this story, I was trying to figure out ways to wangle a Tiki bar invite.

    He laughed as he recounted this to us, because all the neighborly and comradely conversation led up to his reminding her that he was the dynamo behind the anti-boathouse campaign of yesteryear...
    I think he said that she blanched...
    or gaped...
    or coughed and excused herself and left.

    I have never been to that bloody Tiki bar.

    Neighbor Knowles from down Monroe Street

    (His name actually is "Neighbor Knowles"!)

    Continuous Transportation: Rail

     Un État de Transport Continu
    inspiré par le film Transperceneige

    Illinois Central Railroad, Chicago, 1943, South Water Street, Night
    photo:  Jack Delano 


    Thursday, March 17, 2016

    Foreign AId

    In VOX
    This map should change the way you think about foreign aid
    Updated by Matthew Yglesias on November 8, 2015, 8:00 a.m. ET
    Critics of foreign aid often argue that it's ineffective at generating sustainable economic development or truly helping the world's poor. But as this great map from the cost information website reveals, one reason for that is that promoting development and helping the poor isn't actually what motivates a lot of America's foreign aid:


    Continuous Transportation: Rail

     Un État de Transport Continu
    inspiré par le film Transperceneige

    Illinois Central Railroad, Chicago, 1943, South Water Street
    photo:  Jack Delano


    So It Begins...


    Wednesday, March 16, 2016


    Pryaniki: Russian gingerbread or spice cookies.
    Mix the sugar, eggs, soda, cinnamon, honey...
    cardamom, ginger, cloves, nutmeg, anise...

    Jewish children with a Teacher in Samarkand, about 1910

    One of the photos of Sergei Prtokudin-Gorski  of Imperial Russia.


    Happy News (At Last!)

     Shannon, Possibly in his Neo-Classical Doghouse

    Finally, some good, old-fashioned news we may all relate to; news that reminds us how wonderful things actually are, and how fortunate we are. As the Republican candidates this year have underscored, it is good things like these below that cause terrorists to hate us and refugees - those who haven't drowned yet, that is - wannabe us!

    Daily Mail
    Media billionaire Barry Diller and wife Diane von Fürstenberg clone beloved Jack Russell terrier into TWO new puppies
    Media executive Barry Diller and his wife Diane von Fürstenberg have cloned their Jack Russell terrier, Shannon, into two new puppies, it has been revealed.

    Diller, the chairman of IAC, was so enamored by his pooch that he got his beloved pet's DNA cloned by a specialist pair of puppies who are almost exact replicas of Shannon.

    It is unknown when the dog's DNA was cloned, but the couple appear to have two new puppies running around already.
    Barry Diller, the chairman of IAC, and his wife, Diane von Fürstenberg, cloned their beloved dog Shannon to create two new adorable puppies

    Barry Diller, the chairman of IAC, and his wife, Diane von Fürstenberg, cloned their beloved dog Shannon to create two new adorable puppies
    Shannon, a Jack Russell Terrier, was a hit around Hollywood and made appearances at pre-Oscar parties... [and]was a hit around Hollywood, having been the talk of the town on more than one occasion...

    Shannon was also known for sleeping in an extravagant, custom-made neoclassical doghouse when she wasn't hitting the streets of Los Angeles.

    Cloning a dog can cost up to $100,000. The procedure is done by a Korean company that implants the dog's DNA into a dog egg.

    A representative for Diller confirmed that the dog was cloned but would not add any further comments.

    It is unknown if Shannon is still living.

    Hah!  Living... The Life Of Riley !!!

    Put's a new spin on living a dog's life.

    If only Angela Merkel had backed dog cloning instead of helping refugees, she would not be losing local elections right now!