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Tuesday, August 4, 2015
Southern Weather Radar


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    playing a patient game

    FIFA FI FO Thumb, I Smell the Blood of a Rotten Russian Man

    by | Jun 6, 2015
    FIFA FI FO Thumb, I Smell the Blood of a Rotten Russian Man

    Virtually every caricature cartoon has Putin always beating Obama at chess. Stupidparty love to suggest that Obama is playing checkers against a chess grand-master. Odd since chess would be beyond their powers. Perhaps we should revisit this issue.

    Not long ago a strapping Russian super hero, overwhelmingly proud of his disturbing mix of a jedi judo six pack physique and chess thumping grand master heritage, was strutting half naked across the world stage seemingly out maneuvering any mortal who got in his way. A Palin with a brain, his task made easy by a disingenuous myopic American administration through 2008 being held in contempt in the court of world opinion…

     

     

    it's getting worse

    Discarding the Elderly

    by | Jun 4, 2015
    Discarding the Elderly

    Elder abuse is defined as “harmful acts toward an elderly adult, such as physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional or psychological abuse, financial exploitation, and neglect.” Financial exploitation comes from the banking industry; neglect emanates from the halls of Congress; and emotions are stirred through the stories of impoverished seniors:

    From Laurel, Maryland: I am over 60, and I was pushed out of my job because of my age. My rent, car note, and electricity are all two months behind. I can barely get food. Utilities will be cut off soon.

     

     

    others disagree

    Something tells some of us Hillary will not be the next president

    by | Jun 4, 2015
    Hillary Rodham Clinton

    Though many have virtually already elected Hillary Rodham Clinton as the next president, somehow…..somehow we don’t think she will even get the nomination.

    That would be a major shift in what the experts think will happen. It’s to the point that we even heard a stockbroker making stock-buying decisions based on his thinking that Ms. Clinton will in 2017 become the 45th president of the United States. Others who watch politics closely have told us that they don’t feel that Ms. Clinton will be the nominee.

     

     

    national flood insurance

    Rewarding Poor Planning

    by | May 21, 2015
    Rewarding Poor Planning

    It has been hard to get timely, accurate information. In the early years of the 21st century, some group was tracking the transfer of dollars from the federal treasury to the states, which generally showed that the majority payments were in the form of various types of insurance subsidies: mortgage insurance, housing insurance, health insurance, flood insurance, crop insurance and higher education loans.

    The data collection stopped, perhaps because of objections from the insurance industries at having their transfer function exposed. Or maybe all of my computer crashes and software switches are the reason I no longer can find the information.

     

     

    nra gun myths reevaluated

    The Deconstruction of a discredited Gundermenatist Rock Star

    by | May 20, 2015
    The Deconstruction of a discredited Gundermenatist Rock Star

    Ironically – let us begin with a Joke.

    Man walking along a road in the countryside comes across a shepherd and a huge flock of sheep. Tells the shepherd, “I will bet you $100 against one of your sheep that I can tell you the exact number in this flock.” The shepherd thinks it over; it’s a big flock so he takes the bet. “973,” says the man. The shepherd is astonished, because that is exactly right. Says “OK, I’m a man of my word, take an animal.” Man picks one up and begins to walk away…

     

     

    judicious liberality

    “Indulging Generosity”

    by | May 15, 2015
    "Indulging Generosity"

    It’s a phrase that just popped into my head out of the ether the other day. And, sure enough, Google has a handy reference in a book by a Scottish minister, David Gilkison Watt, who died in London in 1897, after having visited both India and St. Petersburg, Florida. Watt was a missionary, so it’s perhaps not surprising that in his writing he promoted the wisdom he found in the Book of Ezekiel — i.e. long before his time. I don’t know if his “Homiletic Commentary on the Book of Ezekiel” was timely when he wrote it, but it sure seems timely now.

     

     

    it's smarta

    Gwinnett must act now to have traffic relief … by 2025

    by | May 12, 2015
    Gwinnett County Traffic photo by Valerie via Flickr

    There’s always a big time gap between conception of an idea and its completion. That’s true in social interactions in getting people to agree, in marketing of a new product, and certainly in construction projects. An old idea is getting more attention in Gwinnett, Ga. More people are recognizing the need for the county to have a modern transit system, that is, to include some sort of rail system, whether it be light rail, perhaps street cars, or heavy rail, either connecting to the MARTA (Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority) system, or even an extension of MARTA itself.

     

     

    great sucking sound

    A Multinational Trojan Horse: The Trans-Pacific Partnership

    by | May 7, 2015
    The Procession of the Trojan Horse into Troy about 1760 by Giovanni Domenico Tiepolo via Wikipedia.org (public domain) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trojan_Horse

    “The accumulation of all powers, legislative, executive, and judiciary, in the same hands, … may justly be pronounced the very definition of tyranny.” – James Madison in The Federalist Papers.

    You don’t have to know much about the “trade” deal called the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) to be more than a little suspicious. First, there are the very peculiar bedfellows. Supporting the TPP are President Obama and most Congressional Republicans, the same Republicans who’ve vehemently opposed his every initiative for the past six and one-half years.

     

     

    stupid, stupid, stupid

    The Mathematics of Guns and Violence in the US Compared to the World

    by | May 7, 2015
    The Mathematics of Guns and Violence in the US Compared to the World

    It is projected that sometime in 2015, Gun Deaths will become more ubiquitous in the USA than Auto fatalities — at over 30,000 lives per year. By way of comparison in the UK Automobiles are 1,300% more deadly than Guns (using 2011 data).

    Baltimore represents the inevitable confluence of trends that only spell more disaster down the road. The trends at play are: 1) Gun Culture 2) Inherent deep rooted Bigotry and 3) the disenfranchisement of the voters –with the consequent undermining of Democracy.

     

     

    oakland spring

    “They came to bury us, not knowing we were seeds.”

    by | May 3, 2015
    "They came to bury us, not knowing we were seeds."

    Occupy lives from coast to coast. It’s just no longer news. In Oakland, the images of martyred young men are “planted” along with real flowers and trees to start a garden of hope. That’s the Oakland Spring.

    Three years ago.

     

     

    for every child

    Growing Big Dreams and Fixing Higher Ed

    by | Apr 27, 2015
    Photo of the occupation of the clock tower at New York City's historic Cooper Union college to protest the imposition of fees for the first time in the free school's 150-year history approached its second week with a rally on December 8. Students are demanding that the college, founded to provide quality education to working class and low income scholars, remain free and that the school president resign - by Michael Fleshman via Flickr

    Back many years ago when I graduated from high school, my father made me a promise that changed my life and we should make the same promise to all of our children in South Carolina.

    As a callow youth with my brand spanking new diploma in hand, I was simply excited about graduating and looking forward to celebrating with my friends. But before things got too far out of hand, my father pulled me aside, looked me straight in the eye and made me a serious and solemn promise. “As long as I’m financially able,” he said, “I will pay for all of the college and graduate education you need to help you fulfill your life’s dreams.”

     

     

    costing lives

    Subverting Democracy by Corrupting Truth

    by | Apr 14, 2015
    Subverting Democracy by Corrupting Truth

    “None of my friends can afford Obamacare, either,” Meghan said indignantly, “it should be repealed.”

    We were in the South Carolina Lowcountry. Meghan is a mid-to-late-thirties single mother who is balancing raising her child, her relationship and job while still working on her degree. She was telling us about the hospital where she works. Like so many rural hospitals across the South…

     

     

    code-breaking

    “Protection” — It does not mean what you think it means.

    by | Apr 13, 2015
    "Protection" -- It does not mean what you think it means.

    At least not in Glynn County, Georgia. Nor, I suspect, many other places where duplicitous Republicans reign. In some instances, “protection” is a euphemism for extorting money that you shouldn’t have to pay out, if our public servants were doing their job. The Mafia and home insurance come to mind. Which is why, when the term is used by those whom we’ve hired to “serve and protect,” we are relieved to think that, at last, somebody’s doing their job. Think again.

     

     

    religious intolerance act

    A new thought has come into being: “Thank God for Indiana”

    by | Apr 3, 2015
    Mike Pence of Indiana - Anti-Gay Crusader

    For years, you have heard people in the South say: “Thank God for Mississippi!”

    They meant that were it not for that state, their own state might rank 50th out of 50 states in some category. Mississippi has traditionally ranked 50th in educational attainment, family income, education and other indices. These other states of the South were mighty pleased that their own state didn’t rank below Mississippi. Of course, their state might rank close to Mississippi, but not dead last.

     

     

    banning mermaids

    More reasons for Georgia’s state legislature to meet less often

    by | Mar 26, 2015
    More reasons for Georgia's state legislature to meet less often

    Some of my readers at Gwinnett Forum have asked if I was serious about requiring that the Georgia General Assembly meet only once in every two years.

    In short, you betcha! Why? Because most Georgians will tell you that nothing is safe when the Georgia Legislature meets, as members introduce all sorts of measures that negatively impacts its citizens, most bills only benefiting some local constituent.

     

     

    compounding mendacity

    Settlement or Extortion?

    by | Mar 22, 2015
    Image: composite image created for LikeTheDew.com - aerial photo by James Holland Photography; Mr. Moneybags a Monopoly image (fair use).

    The reports of a settlement on Sea Island, Georgia, are disturbing on many counts, not the least of which is that the Sea Island Company no longer exists. Not only have many of the assets of the bankrupt, family-owned firm been acquired by an artificial body that called itself “Sea Island Acquisitions,” as if acquisition were an honorable enterprise, but that Limited Liability (little responsibility) Corporation has now morphed into an alphabet string that’s not even a pronounceable acronym, SIA PROPCO II, LLC…

     

     

    efficient and painless

    The Great Transition

    by | Mar 20, 2015
    My home with our new solar array

    “The Stone Age came to an end not for a lack of stones, and the oil age will end, but not for a lack of oil.” — Ahmed Zaki Yamani, former Saudi Arabian Minister of Oil, 2000.

    The Great Transition has begun. I know, because our household is part of it. I speak of humanity’s transition from the bondage of addiction to fossil fuels — addiction that has fouled our air and water, disrupted our climate and ravaged our earth — to the liberation of renewable energy.

     

     

    meet april moore

    Taking on the Man Who Would Be Virginia’s Scott Walker

    by | Mar 20, 2015
    Taking on the Man Who Would Be Virginia’s Scott Walker

    It is reasonable to believe that the state senator in our part of Virginia is being groomed to do for Virginia—or I should say do to Virginia—what Scott Walker has been doing to Wisconsin. This state senator’s name is Mark Obenshain. In the election of 2013 he came within a hair of winning statewide office as Virginia’s Attorney General. Now there is much expectation that in 2017 he will try to become governor. Here is an important clue regarding what it would mean for him to succeed in fulfilling that ambition: in his Attorney General race, Mr. Obenshain was helped by a $60,000 donation from the Koch Brothers.

     

     

    trUSt

    Selling out the Public

    by | Mar 18, 2015
    Judas Receiving the Thirty Pieces of Silver by Simon Bening (public domain via Wikimedia.org)

    Once upon a time it took thirty pieces of silver to sell out a man. Now, in the electronic age, when all precious metals have been replaced by paper or electric currencies, millions of people, some not yet born, can be sold out for next to nothing. That’s progress. Some people work to conserve the environment and to prevent further pollution and degradation of the organisms that make up the basic web of life. Others are content to simply exclude their fellow man. Still others promote financial interests by making some lands inaccessible…

     

     

    only sane course

    The Greater Danger: Precipice or Slippery Slope?

    by | Mar 10, 2015
    Lower Crabtree Falls, Virginia, National Forest Service image

    I’m a boomer, so I missed the greatest existential crisis of the 20th Century: The Second World War. My Dad, however, was in the thick of it, helping mop up after the Battle of the Bulge.

    In my lifetime, though, the human family has stared down the barrel of two additional crises of existential proportions: the Cuban Missile Crisis and climate destabilization, the latter of which is ongoing. Which crisis has posed the greater threat?

     

     

    Oblogservations: Life in the Key of Stupid

    by | Mar 9, 2015
    Oblogservations: Life in the Key of Stupid

    Okay, what’s in the headlines today?  Well, let’s see.

    Jumpin’ Jehosaphats: There is the idiot woman who was asked to leave a McDonalds because she claimed that the kangaroo, (yes, a fuckin’ kangaroo) she had with her, wrapped in a blanket and riding in an infant car seat, was her “service animal.” Like the rest of you I assumed it must be a “Seeing Eye Kangaroo” but that would be incorrect. She explained to the officer that the kangaroo helps her cope with “emotional distress” and showed him a doctor’s note stating she needed a kangaroo…

     

     

    poisoning our wetlands

    An open letter to Georgia Representative Alex Atwood

    by | Mar 7, 2015
    State. Rep Alex Atwood

    Dear Alex Atwood,

    The problem with the Cons (conservative, contrary, confused, conflicted, concerned, convoluted; take your pick) is that they are negative — against not just change, but most everything else. So, since the world is in a state of constant change, they are “out of step,” so to speak and that makes them both ineffective and angry. It is a mistake to think the Cons we install in public office will accomplish anything positive…

     

     

    climate destabilization

    Global Warming or Climate Chaos: What’s in a Name?

    by | Mar 6, 2015
    Ice Floes, Kamchatka Coast, Russia (NASA, International Space Station)

    This winter has set record lows in many states, a fact the editor of our conservative local newspaper, and others of his ilk, must be relishing. “There’s no global warming,” I can imagine him crowing. “It’s all a liberal hoax.” Such distorted logic reveals either an appalling ignorance of the meaning of “average,” or a cynical attempt to intentionally mislead.

    Truth is, the names bestowed on various scientific phenomena are often whimsical in origin. Nobel laureate (1969) Murray Gell-Mann, for example, appropriated the term quark — one of three elementary particles and fundamental constituents of matter — from a nonsensical line in Finnegan’s Wake: “Three quarks for Muster Mark!”

     

     

    georgia sb 139

    Left Holding the Bag

    by | Mar 6, 2015
    Left Holding the Bag

    A healthy by-product of opening my mouth to criticize others is being forced to assess the risk of having to eat my own words. I’ve learned the hard way to find my weaknesses before others do it for me. It saves glass walls if I can just hit myself with the rocks inside the house.

    Last week, I tweeted disappointment with the Georgia Senate for passing SB 129 which blocks local governments from banning plastic bags.

     

     

    yin v. yang

    Burn Out or Check Out? Let’s Dance

    by | Mar 2, 2015
    Rights free image from WallpaperCraft.com.

    It’s a dance I know by heart, this shifting and swaying from the outward world of human entanglements to an inner place of calm reflection. I’m not sure I could stop this movement if I tried, caught between voices calling cause to action and others from far hillsides beckoning me to run away — to fly away and be freed.

    All around are people caught in conflict, their caring inching closer daily to anger, with words unheard, meanings misunderstood, and passions unrequited. On issues local, global, and universal, we have shouting like never before.

     

     

    why it matters

    The Mission for March is the Marsh

    by | Feb 25, 2015
    Image: The Willet by Evangelio Gonzalez via flickr and used a Creative Commons license. https://www.flickr.com/photos/dgonzal111139/5982804651/in/photolist-a7Frok-a7JjUY-am1BqY-3ywU83-dsqcWy-3ysvoT-3ywTSW-dsqb9E-dsqaem-dsfppi-S3qTk-b256Tr-bXB549-auTonb-dDUGWA-4LDLpD-4LDHzX-mGmeX

    Community Forum on Marsh Buffers & Clean Waters, March 4 at 7:00 pm, Ballard Community Center, Brunswick, GA.

    And, because such events need to be sponsored and the environment can never have too many friends, we’re organizing a new group, the Sidney Lanier Environmental Advocacy Team or S.L.E.A.T.– sporting the unofficial slogan “Making sure our environment is good to eat.”

     

     

    just keep voting republican

    Code Red in the War on Decent Folk

    by | Feb 21, 2015
    Code Red in the War on Decent Folk

    We couldn’t put it off any longer. Last night Dede and I told Ruthie we were getting a divorce. Since we’ve enjoyed what can only be termed a highly successful marriage for 37 years, the news was unexpected.

    “You’re what?”

    “We’re getting out,” I offered, not very helpfully. “It’s time. We really don’t have any choice.”

    “What are you talking about? You all are perfect together.”

    “That’s not the point,” Dede tried to explain.

    “What is the point?” Ruthie cried.

    I put it as succinctly as I could. “Gay marriage.”

     

     

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