Thursday, February 21, 2013

Fair Trade II

Here's another fair trade, as is being discussed by half a dozen states. You want to own a gun, fine if you are a legal, responsible gun owner who abides by the federal and state laws for buying, owning an using a gun, but then you have to carry liability insurance, as you carry property insurance, for any damage done by anyone with your guns.

That's fair since liability insurance is standard with anything else people own and use, homes, property, cars, etc., so having full liability insurance for injuries or death of others, loss of job and income, cost of healthcare, etc. goes along with owning a gun, no matter who uses it. It's your gun.

Sounds fair to me that if anyone is hurt, especially killed with a gun, and especially by anyone in a home where guns are owned and kept, they should be entitled to compensation from the gun owner. No different than anything else which can cause death or injury to others.

I applaud this idea. Take responsibility for owning a gun and pay if it causes damage or harm.

Fair Trade

Here's a fair trade President Obama. You want the Democrats to support your nomination of Mr. Brennan to be the new CIA Director, then you give us the letters justifying the right of the President to target and kill Americans, and other individuals, using drones in foreign countries.

These letters which you're refusing to be forthcoming with in their entirety are on par with the Bush administration torture memos which we now know had dubious legal basis at best, and targeting American citizens without due process is much the same to ordinary Americans.

So you tell us what you think and we'll tell you what we think. Fair trade to me. What are you afraid of, being found to be in violation of the Constitution?

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

To states banning abortions

If you think legally banning abortions in Mississippi, or any state will end abortions in the states, you're wrong. It will drive abortions into the back rooms where it was 50 years ago, and why abortions were brought out of the back rooms into clinics.

It will only ban abortions in your mind. The reality is that abortions will always be done everywhere, it's just a matter of who knows and the risks to the woman. But that's your goal because you don't care about women, don't care about life, don't care about being humane.

You only want to think you're right and you are blind to reality. You hide behind your religion thinking you're right but the truth is simple. God doesn't care about your belief! God knows how blind you are, how insensitive you are, and how inhumane you are.

God cares about women and life. God would not ban abortions. God would know and trust women. God would hold them in God's hands to tell them to be brave and wise. God would respect their situation, their circumstances and their decisions, no matter what they choose.

That's our God, not yours. And your God isn't God, it's just your arrogance and ignorance.

Three Americas

We have three Americas. The Republican America which is divided among several groups, the wealthy, the corporate CEO's, the tea party, the conservatives, the religous pro-lifers, the gun rights extremists (as opposed to normal gun owners), and the rest of them.

The 11-million undocumented people with their families currently living and working in the US and who deserve to be Americans.

And the rest of us, the majority of Americans who are the real people who believe in the diversity of this country, believe in sharing, believe in good government, believe in building and rebuilding America, believe in creating jobs, believe in small business, believe in science, believe in education, believe in healthcare for everyone, believe in helping everyone who wants help.

And while the Republicans think they are "the Americans", they are not. We are, the majority, the 99% of us, and all of us who agree on what is America for all of us. That is the fight for this country, the fight against the wealthy and corporations buying our politicians, buying our government and even buying our Supreme Court.

That's what's at stake, our country.


Are the Republicans in Congress just stupid or are they ignorantly stupid? Do they really think the American people will believe what they're saying now over the sequester which is the opposite of what they said in August 2011 when they agreed to the sequestion bill to avert the problem they created now by refusing to negotiate and compromise?

Have the Republicans decided that trashing our country, trashing our economy, and trashing our President is their political strategy, agenda and plan? And whining is their best tactic? And we're supposed to listen to them and think they're not stupid?

Tuesday, February 19, 2013


We like male ballet dancers because they're simultaneously strong and graceful, but we love ballerinas because they're simultaneously strong, graceful and beautiful, and they can do it on pointe.

Studies have shown ballet dancers are one of the top three sports athletes for overall physical ability, and dance is better for demonstrating the pure grace, control and balance of the human body.

If you want to know how much ballet dancers warm up and exercise before they dance, check out "The New York City Ballet Workout" by Peter Martins. See how much you can do (I limit myself to the stretching and warmup).

That said, just watch some ballet for awhile, and ask yourself if they're not just athletic, they make it look good too.

I lost the owner's Website/page for the photo, so if anyone knows, please let me know to reference it here. I apologize to the owner for a beautiful image.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

My Rules

Updated February 16, 2013.-- See last two rules.

I've written about Internet forums and those who create them are kings and dictators. I won't go into those issues here, because I want to explain what my rules are here for people interested in entering comments on the short essays. They're actually pretty simple and straight-forward as I'm fairly open-minded and flexible with comments and give the commentor a lot of latitude.

And with that said, here are the rules.

First, remember it's only life, meaning smile. I will take almost anything with a smile.

Second, be positive. Negatives will get your comment deleted. It's the old adage if you can't say anthing positive, don't say anything at all, and if you can't express a negative in a positive way, learn. It will save you all of anger at you later in life.

Third, be honest. Don't bullshit me.

Fourth, be on point. Off-point and your post is history. Want to say something else, get your own blog.

Fifth, teach, don't lecture. If I'm wrong, cool, teach me what you know or think is right, but lectures will be history.

Sixth, be open to discussion. A closed mind doesn't let any light in to refresh the spirit and soul, let alone learn.

Seventh, be real. Don't hide or disguise. I don't.

Eighth, don't advertise. That's the quickest way to be history, see rule about links (below).

Ninth, be understandable, meaning write correctly.

Tenth, be respectful. No personal attacks.

Eleventh, don't be indignant. Make your point but don't bludgeon the reader.

Twelfth, use English. It's the language of the majority of the readers.

Thirteenth, no proselytizing, either with responses or links.

Last, I decide if links to your blog are relevant or not and which will stay or not.

That's it for now. They're flexible and I'll update them as appropriate. And if you can't abide by them, I don't have a problem. I'm notified of comments and I'm the administrator. Your comments can easily be history. After all it's my blog. If you want to rant against my essay, use your own blog.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Mr Reid

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid,

Is the Republicans blocking (filibuster) of the nomination of Chuck Hagel to be the new Secretary of Defense your idea of the new rules you bargained with minority leader Mitch McConnell? Is this your idea of change we expected by just tweaking the rules than actually changing them?

You had 58 votes to get the nomination of Mr. Hagel over the filibuster, but it was two votes short. So who's running the Senate, you and the democrats or the minority republicans? Didn't we vote for the democrats to change things and move this country forward?

And this in just the second month of the first year of this Congressional session. Gee, and you expected something different from the Republicans? You expected they were honest in the negotiations and honorable to actually abide by the new rules and old traditions?

You've been conned by the Republicans and by minority leader McConnell, who bragged about beating you in the negotiations. You screwed your own party and now you screwed the American people too by letting the wingnuts run the Senate.

Any bets it gets worse from now to November 2014 when we get the chance to change things again.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Let's Get It Done

Republicans, you heard the President, "Let's get it done." So, you now have the agenda to help this country, to help the American people, to help those who want to be Americans, to help everyone. That's the agenda you were given tonight with the State of Union address.

If you want to block the efforts, we'll remember you next year in November. If want to sit on your hands and do nothing about it, we'll remember you next year in November. If you decide to only work for the wealthy and corporations, we'll remember you next year in November.

That's your choice, get to work for America and Americans or get out of the way, or we'll shove you out of the way next year in November. That's not hard to understand is it? No, it's not, so let's get to work. Like tomorrow and the rest of this session in Congress.

Monday, February 11, 2013

If She Can't

If Gabby Gifford, after her testimony about guns before Congress this last week, can't convince Congress to act, to pass some reasonable law to regulate guns in this country, common sense solutions to the extent of gun violence in this country, who can?

Who can if she can't? What would it take? Maybe one of the opposition get killed? Would that convince them? And if not? How bad does the killing have to get before they get the idea of gun violence isn't good for this country? How many more needless death of innocent people, and more so innocent children?

The rest of us are waiting because we already know, we're ready and we're expecting something.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

No Ms Foxx

There is an article in today's (2/10/13) New York Times business section on the student loans and debt incurred in North Carolina and the ways people are surviving trying to pay for their school, go to school and work in their life.

This is an on-going problem in this country which hasn't been and isn't being addressed, but the article quotes Representative Virginia Foxx, who heads the North Carolina House subcommitte on higher education, "I spent seven years getting my undergraduate degree and didn't borrow a dime of money."

Ok, but Ms. Foxx, that was over 40 years ago and the times have changed, so the answer I would give is that your experience hasn't applied for the better part of the last 40 years and doesn't apply today. I can say that because of my experience.

When I was discharged from the USAF in January 1973, I attended American River Community College and then California State University, Sacramento, graduating in December 1975. I took the most number of classes I could in ARCC to minimize my time as CSUS and focus on my major.

During this time I worked fulltime, first at a gas station and then at the media center at CSUS. I didn't need to take out loans for my tuition and books because the cost was low, CSUS was $100 per semester (really) and I was on the GI Bill.

When I decided to go to graduate school at Western Washington University in Bellingham, Washington, I took out a loan for $2,000. I worked part-time and used up the rest of my GI Bill to get all the credits to graduate short of the thesis which collasped 75% of the way into its completion.

I found a job with the USGS and did a new thesis to graduate a few years later, all of that work done as a fulltime employee and paying off the student loan, which is my point to Ms. Foxx. Neither your experience or mine applies.

I have no doubt, like me, you worked hard while you were in school, but the times are far different and the cost of an education doesn't fit the model 40 years ago. So, stop being smug about it and help the young people who want to afford a good education. That's what you were elected to do, so do that and stop bitching.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

iTunes 11

I can summarize my view of iTunes 11 very easily, the more I use it, the less I like it. I've never liked iTunes store search tool. I hate that if I'm in music and search for something I get everything in the iTunes stores when all I want is music.

Why don't they understand that? If you're in one section, you don't want other sections search results, like books, podcast, apps, etc., and I don't give a shit about what other "Listeners have bought", like I care about their opinion?

I know iTunes is just trying to expand the user's interest and hopefully see something to buy and download, but that's not why I search. There are people who search to browse, people who search to discover the variety, and there are people who search for specific things.

I'm the last. I have something in mind and it's all I want to find, nothing more and nothing less. Often I hear a song and like to find it, by the artist and song, and in the iTunes store you have to wade through layers of search results and seemingly endless scrolling up/down or left/right.

And above all don't click "See All", unless you love lots of junk to scroll through. In the end I almost give up and use Google's search to find the more specific information and go back to iTunes with the information to find what I want, if they have it.

But always, it's the same, the more I use it, the less I like it. I often use MegaSeg DJ or Fidelia to play music which read iTunes libraries into easier to read lists. Fidelia also plays FLAC files from the various sources I buy them, and convert them into .mp3 files for iTunes.

Anyway, that's the rant for the day, but then I've had the flu for a week now so my mind is partly mush and part frustration

Friday, February 1, 2013

Apple Sucks Again

Update.-- There are two updates to this post. First, there is a fix to Safari, which you can find here, but better yet, Oracle released an update today (Feb. 1, 2012) which fixes Apple's concerns.

If you have Java already, just open the Java window in your Apple preferences, it will show the update ready to download and install. If you don't have Java, then go to Oracle Website for Java to install it.

Original Post.-- Yeah, I'm a little late and a little short with this rant against Apple, although overall I like their products, it's their decisions overriding users' interest which angers me. And what pray tell is my mindless complaint?

Apple has disabled java from running in Safari 6.0.2 and will continue to do so until Oracle fixes Java 7 for the most recent hacker attack which exploits a hole in Java 7. There is no news when Oracle will fix  Java 7 as they just released an update for the previous holes.

What this means is that if you have Java, it won't run with Safari 6.0.2, and as you will find some actions on Web pages, such "visit original page" for Google's image search engine and some user logins, won't work.

That sucks, because Java is not blocked on other browsers on your Mac. You can simply use them, eg. Chrome, Firefox, Chromium, Opera, OmniWeb, etc., for the same thing because Java is not blocked in those browers.

How swift is that Apple? Just ask users to use a different browser, not yours? Brillant marketing. Why not give the user a choice instead of acting like you know better than them. This is true since they can simply use another browser.

But wait, Apple does give them a choice in the Safari preferences but Apple overrides it in the system library file(s). You can look this up but the fix suggested by the Websites doesn't work as Apple seems to have embedded it elsewhere too.

I know there are people vehemetly against Java and the use of the plugin for browsers, but the reality is that it's a commonly used application for many Websites, and for some it's critical to their customers, clients, etal and their business.

So how about it Oracle and Apple? Stop fighting and fix it so we can get on with the tasks in our lives which requires Java with Safari. The people aren't the enemy, you're just being it against us.