Thursday, March 31, 2005

Sorry honey, I'm...

Window open, Spring rain, trees making love.

Most plants don't go very far after the initial move from mom's place, though that can be a good distance. Oak and hickory babies go about as far as the squirrel carries them and that only works if something happens to the squirrel before it gets hungry and comes looking for lunch. In a natural world, which doesn't exist much anymore, walnuts live near water where the nut cases can be washed downstream. This explains how walnut trees cover the miles one way but not the other. I'm pretty sure walking was not involved.

Plants do move. Having sprung a few venus flytraps over the years, I have watched the fast version of plant movement. I like the little okra-looking seed pods on that little oxalys or clover leaf looking plant in the lawn that will spit seeds everywhere like a tiny artillery barrage when you touch it. I have crawled on my hands and knees bumping them and watching them blast open, firing babies everywhere, and yes, I do amuse easily. You people with immacualte lawns will not know what I am talking about...too bad.

But mostly plants just grow and sit, taking what the world dishes out. those that make it through the seasons have their reward...they bloom. When I look at a flower of any sort, and they are not necessarily all beautiful to behold, I tend to honor it. A blossom is a plant making love.

I've let you folks in on the meaning of life before but I'll state it again just so you'll follow me this morning:


and not necessarily in that order. It is a triangular arrangement...each piece of life's mandate is connected to the others and becomes paramount in its moment. Say what you will, though, the reproductive act which I prefer to call making love (not having sex, but yeah, I know..) anyway the reproductive act becomes not the main thing, but the only thing. We've all been there, I think...given up supper, skipped lunch, done stupid things that coulda gotten us wacked or an equivalent, all for the privilege and honor of making love.

With plants it's different. They sit there, waiting until it's time, and then they go at it in a big way. For a plant, making flower is a huge expenditure of resources. The ones that are going off right now have been waiting for months through the worst weather, trying to survive the ice storms and cold, just hoping to last until this moment, carefully crafting the ornate precursors to plant love and wrapping them protected inside their unassuming buds.

Looking at the thousands of blossoms on a maple tree, discreet as they are beautiful, I marvel at the energy it must take to make love with every bud on thousands of branches and twigs.

Sure this living entity ( Is a tree a being?) only gets to make whoopee once a year, but dang what an experience it must be having. It may be once a year but it is also thousands of times at once and that once lasts for days! I can only imagine such a thing and wipe my sweaty palms.

So, children, this is why trees don't walk around. After making flower ten thousand times at once...they are just too tired.



At Bat

Sorry I've not been pestering you folks for the last few days. I've been hanging out in Long Creek listening to birds, and, since the work on our cabin has progressed to the point that the rest of the family will actually stay in it for a few days, we've been enjoying the magnificent combination of spring rain followed by warm weather which forced us to go kayaking. All that and visits with friends have put me in such a pleasant mood, it is tough to work up a good rant, though there is much fodder to be found. (happiness makes for lousy art)

Somehow, our contractor Tom, my wife, and I , have reached accord on the work left to be done on the cabin. I don't see the rush since only I started this thing 20 years ago.

There is a small area of unfinished siding roughly twenty feet above the ground that has served as the access for all the little creatures that like to move out of the forest and into the walls of nice warm houses. In order to finish the wall on the inside, we have to finish the siding at some point. Well, you can't get to it from the outside of the house because it's too high off the ground...a little detail caused by poor planning and design and locating the foundation on a slope where using a ladder is a bad idea. So we'll do what we can from the inside.

As the three of us were staring at the wall with ripped up insulation, flying squirrel nests, and bat droppings, Tom shook his head in that "Damn, why did I say I would do this job?" manner. We weren't sure whether he was kidding or not, and he probably wasn't sure either, when he said, "Um, you'll have to get the Hazmat people to come in and deal with this... We don't deal with hazardous waste and Hanta virus and stuff..."

"Well now, Tom, you are thinking about this all wrong," I said. "There have been fortunes made in the fertilizer business and what you see as bat shit, is really bat guano and as part of the deal, you can have it!" Visions of fiscal abundance were not dancing through Tom's head, and I'll keep you posted as to how the bats fare. I kinda like them but they smell bad and keep you up at night. I'm researching bat houses and nailing screen wire in strategic spots, because even though I am awake lots of times during the night and enjoy the creatural activity, I enjoy the company of my wife more.

Damn the choices a man must make.




Prairie Weather put me on to this little device. You screw it onto the back of your TV and FOX News disappears! I don't know for sure how it works, but it could be the Bull Shit detector we've always wanted. For $8.95 you get FOX news surgically removed from your TV and an e-mail sent to the top FOX advertisers saying you refuse to watch their ads. I might add that Howard Dean has called for a boycott of FOX News advertisers who pay for "opinion presented as fact";:

With every order placed, will send an e-mail in your name to the TOP 10 advertisers at FOX News letting them know that yet another subscriber has opted out of FOX News. With a little luck and a lot of volume, we can shut the FOX up!


Freedom to be imprisoned by the Truth Squad:

Freedom is ever-marching, and its latest target for emancipation is none other than the Gulag Academia, where millions of students are held hostage by totalitarian educators whose cruel practice of teaching them things they don't already believe could soon be put to an end.

For far too long, higher education has been concerned with "education" and "instruction," mere euphemisms for harsh indoctrination into the totalitarian ideology of Fact.


A longish essay but worthy...How do we hear truth above the noise?

in a world where the airwaves are overloaded 24/7 with the mindless babbling of complete idiots, it isn’t very hard to make inconvenient facts disappear, or create new pseudofacts that reinforce whatever bias or cultural affinity you want to cultivate – particularly if the audience is already disposed to prefer your reassuring lies to discomforting truths told by strangers


Saturday, March 26, 2005


I should have titled this a Sunday Sermon but you folks knew what to expect.

As Holidays go, I like Easter. Christmas was originally the pagan astrological announcement that the darkest day was over and the earth was hurtling toward the arrival of spring.

Easter, is the proclamation that, by god it's Spring!

A Jew friend of mine laughs at the fuss made over Christmas. I think he laughs at Christmas because he thinks it is a grand practical joke played on Christians by Jewish shopkeepers. "An excellent merchandising opportunity," as he says.

"For Christians," he says,

"Easter is the franchise!"

"If you don't get to come back from the dead and go to heaven...there's no real point in being a Christian, now is there?"


Several orthodoxies do a much better job of defining an ethical life than does Christianity. I plead an incomplete education here, but of those I am aware of, I consider Budhism to do the best job. All they ask, is that you think for yourself and try to live a kind life, and if you can make a little gift to a monk, that would be nice too. Human foible has crept into Budhism in several forms but "Strive to be a kind person" seems to be pretty clear, as religious directives go.

And support your local monk!

That as a concept, is a constant in any religion that has a chance of surviving. We must not forget the business end of belief, or it all goes away, unable to sustain itself. The monks or priests or preachers, whatever, would have to go get jobs and bag the religion if we didn't give them rice or money...(Uh, dang that's pretty obvious....Anybody thinking what I'm thinking?....)

The "business of belief" was Paul's gift to what passes for Christianity today. Paul tried to buy the franchise from James, Jesus's brother, and James in his high mindedness, refused to accept the money Paul offered. After all the hard work and a fairly painful martyrdom, the religion that Jesus founded passed away about 28 years after his death, because the business end just wasn't happening. Jesus thought the pusuit of money caused too many problems.

The total lack of monetary pursuit causes problems, too!

Paul, on the other hand, as a Jewish Rabbi, had a vision(literally) and a good business plan and started it all over...Well not exactly but close enough. He wound up with the trademark, and that was enough. Something to bond all the believers together. This is where the symbol of the fish comes in.

(The cross came in a couple of centuries later...I am not so crazy about the cross of death symbol that pops up along our highways nowadays, but as symbols go, the fish thing rocks! And talk about kindness! Taking your own lunch, a few fish and a couple of rolls, and sharing it amongst a few thousand people is a monumental act of kindness...We will ignore for the moment, that the fishes and loaves were not Jesus's but were taken from a boy who was hanging out and got swept up in all the biblical events about to go down. Happens to lots of people with names like Jedediah and Ezekiel and such. )

Anyway, if I've pissed anyone off so far, I'm sorry but you can look it up yourself if you care to. If I haven't pissed you personally off...I'm sorry. I do what I can to make you think, OK?

Where was I?...

So Easter is happening and this is the crux (interesting term, that...) of Christianity. It is a symbol of an act of sacrifice, this cross, not for the benefit of one's own bank account, but a sacrifice for others in the ultimate sense.

Regardless of whether you believe every word in the Bible is the literal word of god, or you think it is a collection of folk tales, the concept of sacrifice for the benefit of others is so noble as to make one weep at times for those who have done so.

"Do unto others, as you would have others do unto you!"

Now That, is a concept!

Hey, my friend! Let's make a deal:

I won't steal your stuff, and I won't lie to you, and I won't try to kill you or hurt you, if you will do the same for me...Deal?

But this "Kindness" thing takes it a step must give!

It is Easter! I wish, with all my heart, that the one thing that would rise from the dead in America...and find evelasting life...

is Kindness!

Peace and Love to all...Happy Easter,


Friday, March 25, 2005


Signs of Spring:

The peach tree I planted last year, or what's left of it after the deer found it, is in lavendar bloom.

So are the Sarvice berry trees, which most folks drive by and think are dogwoods. Sarvice is a mountainization of "service" which is what the tiny apples on this apple relative were used for before store bought laxitives were invented.

The hilside has a red tint from the maple blooms. Iactually think spring color is more beautiful than fall. softer and more loving, somehow.

If you bend over and look at the ground just about anywhere you will see small flowers, many of which will soon be chemically eradicated by America's obsession with grass and lawn care.

It's noisy in the morning...some kinda bird has the most monotonous four note tweet on the planet and sits roight outside my bedroom window until I get up to try and see what it is...then it's gone or too damned small to see.

There is a box of Plants from Misty Mountain Nursery sitting on the porch, just delivered. I hear it speak softly, "Plant me, you lazy slob..."

The greens I planted several weeks back have already come up and been eaten by the deer...another successful gardening adventure.

The new stainless steel grill I have been lusting after for six months is still not on sale.

My youngest is driving us crazy with the noise up in his room. Nope not rap music--turkey calls. Juvenile hunt is tomorrow. Please let him get one, please, please, please! We're going nuts around here...




Social Security will not "Run out of money" in any way shape or form in 2042 or 2041 or whenever. New cash flow is coming in all the time and will continue as long as anybody in America has a job....Oh wait!!!

Now I get it!

Via Wonkette:
So it turns out that Social Security really is in a crisis -- yesterday's report by the system's trustees found it will run out of money in 2041, not 2042 as projected earlier. See, don't you get it? President Bush said we had to act fast or we'd be screwed, and now that's a whole year we've lost, all because those Democrats in Congress... well, okay, mostly because Bush's plan to privatize Social Security is about as popular as a Sacajawea dollar. But still!

Paying all the Social Security benefits the government owes to old folks over the next 75 years will cost $4 trillion, and with a growing elderly population, payroll taxes won't bring in enough cash to cover it. But the trustees' report also had a hidden silver lining: Medicare will run out of money almost 20 years sooner than Social Security. Which means, we've solved the problem already! No money for Medicare means no health care for seniors. No health care for seniors means... no seniors! And no seniors means no Social Security problem. Shit, that was easy.

Now all we have to do is figure out how to get al-Qaida enrolled in a federal entitlement program and we're set.-- "Joe Klein"

I'm getting overloaded on Schiavo case grandstanding and outright lies. The lengths Randall Terry will go to are disgusting and incredible at the same time. Terry is not a nice guy and seems willing to say anything that suits his goal, which seems to be publicity for himself more than anything else.

One claim we hear constantly is that Michael Schiavo is doing this for the money. The reason he won't relinquish custody of Terri is because he stands to profit by her death through insurance, malpractice awards, etc.

Michael received $300,000 in the malpractice judgement against Terri's doctor, she received a much larger sum which was put in trust for her care. 15 years later it is largely gone. Terri's treatment is paid for by Medicare, which George Bush has moved to cut. In the end, after looking at it, I believe that Michael Schiavo is telling the truth as to why he is pushing this to the end:

"This is what Terri wanted."

While I would not have done things this way (I think this is true ...I hope I never actually find out), I accept his statements on their face:

During an October 27, 2003 interview with CNN's Larry King, (Michael) Schiavo told him that the Schindlers offered him $700,000 "to walk away" from his wife:

King: They have that kind of money?

Schiavo: They get money from the right-wing activists. The right wing--the right to life groups.

King: The right-to-life group was willing to pay you $700,000 to walk away?

Sciavo: Right


The Schindler's Spokesman, Terry Randall...nice guy, eh?

He solicited donations for his "ministry" that he used to pay for his $400,000.00 house for him and his new trophy wife:

World noted that the same month he paid the deposit on his new home, a court ruled that Terry, who divorced his first wife and has remarried, "was not paying a fair share of child support." In an article on his website, Terry denounced the World report as "journalistic trash, a 'hit piece' of malice and misinformation."

In a May 25, 2004, interview about his gay son with The Advocate, Terry stated that homosexuality is a "sexual addiction" ...

According to the February 12, 2000, Washington Post report, Terry was censured by his church, the Landmark Church of Binghamton, New York, for a "pattern of repeated and sinful relationships and conversations with both single and married women." Terry denies the accusation.


Thursday, March 24, 2005

6:38 a.m. thinking about life

Two immature eagles just declared Spring as they flew past my morning coffee. One of them looked to be wanting to get out to the lake and get breakfast...the other wanted to play.

You long time married folks might recognize this early morning metaphor.

We watched the mock combat until they were out of sight, dropping below the treeline as they lost altitude, choosing an aerial wrestling match intead of flight. Hey, a bird's gotta have a little fun now and again, you know? They always break it off before they hit the water, saving themselves at the last split second. A reverse Daedalus exchanging water for fire, a dance for life instead of death.

But then, I think, life includes death. Most people realize that this is not a circle but a one way path with a limited time to traverse.

Death is natural and not to be feared. Only those things which we leave undone are tragic...all else is wonderment!

Be safe, kids!


The play that is the Schiavo case is not a drama...It is a farce. It is the sad and volatile witches brew of broken hearted people manipulated into pawnship by the wicked.

The State of Florida appointed a very wise and honest man to be the guardian ad litem for Terri Schiavo. He spent a great deal of time with her and her family and gives us the true picture of this very sad situation. Here is a link to an online interview with Dr Jay Wolfson, Professor of Public Health and Medicine, University of South Florida and Legal Guardian of Terri Schiavo (2003).

It requires you to sign up but it doesn't cost and has given me access to much information. If you do nothing else, go to Dr. Wolfson's report to Jeb Bush and make up your own mind. Much of what is being said by the so called "forces for Life" is either intentionally distorted or an outright lie.

Dr. Jay Wolfson: ...."The best we can do is rely on good law, good science and good medicine - and do it honestly. the courts have done their jobs, and the rules of law and science have been applied as well as possible. there is no good or easy answer to this -- only the hope that the result will be in the best interests of Terri Schiavo. but there is no way to overcome the grief and dashed hopes of loving parents. but this is not about the parents, the family, the legislature, the governor, the congress or the president. it is only about terri."

Here is the report that Dr. Wolfson gave to Governor Jeb Bush.

Jeb Bush report

The art of sidewalk chalk mixed with perspective... There are several of these at the link. Imagine this as a performance art, done and then washed away with the next rainstorm. I like this one particularly for the rocks the folks are standing on. They aren't really there except as chalk on a sidewalk. Much like the Bush Presidency.

sidewalk art

If you don't read Fafblog, you don't know Giblets!


I am growing very fond of the Bush twins!!

The bodies may not be familiar, but the faces sure are. That's Jenna and Barbara Bush — or is it Barbara and Jenna? — supposedly sporting sexy lingerie in Maxim magazine.

OK, it's not really them from the neck down. They wish!

"But I honestly feel they should send Maxim a thank-you note," he wrote in an e-mail. "The mag made them look beautiful!"

"We haven't gotten any blow-back (yet)," Heindery said. "I think like any good American, they should take (the) joke in stride."



Wednesday, March 23, 2005

a Liberal's Liberal

Ok, I'm back from I 40 hell. Why the great state of Tennessee can't get its act together and deal with wrecks without turning the main coast to coast traffic artery into a parking lot, I'd like to know! It should not take 4 h
ours to get home from Nashville. Other states handle things like this pretty well, why can't we?

I sat for one hour without moving, while four monster truck wreckers removed one semi from the median strip of I 40. Let's see...the parking lot was roughly 8 miles long so that's 1,408 vehicles with 1.5 humans per, so just over 2000 people were sitting there giving up more than an hour of their lives for something that could have been done much more conveniently.

I figure the wreckers should pay the folks stopped on the road reimbursement for being held captive in the rain with no bathrooms. The amount I calculate is somewhere near $211,200.00...A cost that is never figured into these things. that doesn't complain the overage minutes everybody will have on their cell phones for explaining why they won't get home in time to pick up the kid from soccer practice.

Gripe, gripe, gripe, OK, there I'm done.

Shook hands and chatted with Howard Dean at lunch yesterday.

(Thanks, Randy! YUDAMAN)

I am a Dean fan. Listening to him speak in person has changed how I view him...I'm twice the fan I was. I wish I could have recorded his talk and just printed it here for you guys. Unfortunately I can't remember squat, so here's a little bit from the Tennessean.

Howard Dean

I'll tell you more later when I have time.

A Jewish friend of mine says we make way too big an issue of Christmas...Easter is the franchise! I agree. But Churchies are throwing around bible verses left and right with all that's going on right now...Ok, more "right" than left. The rightwingers are pretty much in your face with their religion pretenses.

An attack ad was run by the Republicans while Dean was in town calling him:

a ''Northeastern liberal.'' It also labeled Dean and Democratic Gov. Phil Bredesen as ''peas in a pod.''
''I've been called worse things than a liberal,'' Dean said. ''The reason the Republicans call names is because they have nothing to say about balancing the budget, creating jobs or doing anything about health care or education.''

There's that attack word, "Liberal" again. Jesus was a Liberal's Liberal but you would never know that from the religious radio show that I listened to out of curiosity while parked in the left lane. As they twisted things in their attacks, I thought of this verse:

“Woe to you lawyers! For you have taken away the key of knowledge. You did not enter in yourselves, and those who were entering in you hindered.” And as He said these things to them, the scribes and the Pharisees began to assail Him vehemently, and to cross-examine Him about many things, lying in wait for Him, and seeking to catch Him in something He might say, that they might accuse Him.” (Luke 11:52-54)

So here's an Easter thought for you,

If Jesus returned today, what would Republicans do to him?

Today's "religious" right wingers worship Meanness of Spirit, a greed-driven war-loving totalitarianism. The only way to salvation, they say is THEIR way, through a nature-hating Authority that tramples all Jesus preached.

As Tecumseh, the great Shawnee spirit-warrior, allegedly shouted at William Henry Harrison in the early 1800s: "When Jesus Christ came upon the Earth, you killed him. The son of your own God. And only after he was dead did you worship him and start killing those who would not. "

An Easter message:

They killed him last time...and they will kill him next time, too!





Isn't it amazing? Robert Blake was found not guilty. And his lawyer was very clever. The defense was based on the premise "What kind of idiot kills his wife after buying her dinner?"

Well, folks, on the second anniversary of the invasion of Iraq, gas prices in California have hit three dollars a gallon in some places. Three dollars a gallon! Didn't we win that war? I mean, I know there's no weapons of mass destruction, but apparently there's no gas there either.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Hepatica, Darlin'...Is that you?

Mountain Laureate and I were having an electronic conversation about how simple things give us such joy with the coming of Spring. In this case it was the discovery of a smal wild plant called round lobed hepatica. I couldn't find a pic that shows the variety we have around here but this might give you an idea:

I have to hit the road this morning but I just wanted to give you guys a kick in the butt and tell you to go outside. I have found this little jewel within 75 yards of an office building in Kingston, Tn. There are hundreds of other flowers popping out all over. Think small and look at your feet.




Hey, here's a really curious fact about the Terri Schiavo law that President Bush just signed.

Notwithstanding his bullcrap rhetoric about being on the side of "LIFE", the law he signed as Governor of Texas let's insurance companies pull your plug even if you are fully awake and tell them you want to live...They can pull your plug on one condition...your insurance provider tells them to!

OK, here's the factoid:

Only Three Senators voted for the Law!

Yep! Three people voted to keep Terri Sciavo's dead body "on the tube"...

...In the weekend scramble, U.S. House of Representatives members who had scattered for a two-week Easter recess were called back to Washington and 261 of the House's 435 members gave the measure well over the two-thirds majority required.

Only three members of the 100-member U.S. Senate, however, were present to approve the measure by a voice vote.

Although Republicans publicly rejected any ulterior motives, a memo surfaced over the weekend calling the Schiavo case "a great political issue" and saying that Christian conservatives would be "excited" by the Senate debate.


Monday, March 21, 2005

Wow, the first day of spring was more than glorious. Of course I believe every day is glorious no matter what but this one was "gloriouser" than most and I have a little bit more extra sun damage to my well weathered countenance as a result. I heard the Replacements movie line from a friend yesterday, "Pain goes away, chicks dig scars, but glory lasts forever!" and I couldn't help but think, "chicks don't dig wrinkles."

Poor Annie! Stuck with a wrinkled old man who thinks he's a kid and still can't remember to put on sun screen.

Issue fatigue has set in on this one but here it is:

The Terry Schiavo case is being played out in the grandstands, as both sides make their case over and over ad nauseum. I hurt for all of the family, though I know what my decision would be if I were in the family's position. Before I tell you here are some facts about the case:

115 doctors have personally examined Terry. Not one of them disputes the diagnosis of "persistant vegetative state."

Not one!

Getting two doctors to agree is difficult enough, but 115? What this means is very simple...The thinking, feeling, human being that was Terry has died. Though her body can be preserved for a long time by artificial means, Terry doesn't live there any more.

There have been a number of doctors who have stated that Terry was NOT in a persistive vegetative state. Not one of the doctors that have made this statement has examined Terry personally...

Not one!

There is a word for doctors who do things like this...


The body of Terry Schiavo has been lying in a hospital bed for 15 years. Every competent doctor that has seen her has decided that the part of that human body that was Terry died 15 years ago. Every medical test and procedure confirms this... and folks believe me, there are a tremendous number of medical tests and procedures that allow doctors to invade the human brain and dissect it electronically and microscopically...

The doctors know, with certainty, that Terry has "Left the building." Her body is capable of low level reflexive mucle movement which her parents, unable to let go, interpret as "Terry".

My heart cries for them, as I have done the same thing, looked down upon my mother's body lying in a hospital bed at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, wanting her to be alive after a brain anuerism...but she wasn't. Twelve years later I still miss her, and I know the Schiavos pain. I question their decision to prolong it. it would be quite possible for them to age and die with Terry's body still hooked up to a feeding tube, and then what?

Terry's husband could end this controversy immediately with one act. He could divorce Terry. This would leave her parents to their unending nightmare and he could go on with his life. Michael Schiavo has actually already done this, go on with his life that is. After years of grief, he has a new reationship and even two young children. Think what you will.

I have no answer for you although I know what I think. I would let Terry's body die. The problem is that Terry's husband wants closure and release...Terry's mother and father want her back. I do not think both things are possible. What I do know for certain is that the political forces on both sides are driving this for their own purposes.

Let us realize that this should be recognized as a Tragedy and not an issue.

Neither Terry Schiavo's husband, nor her parents, are going to be happy. Why can't they just seek relief?

"In a memo distributed only to Republican senators, the Schiavo case was characterized as "a great political issue" that could pay dividends with Christian conservatives, whose support is essential in midterm elections such as those coming up in 2006."

...said the memo, which was reported by ABC News

Senator from Tennessee, Bill Frist, you are scum for what you do! You looked at a videotape of Terry and made the statement that you do not believe she is in a persistive vegetative state.


President George Bush, you are scum for what you do! As Governor of Texas you signed a bill into law that would allow hospitals to pull the feeding tubes from patients like Terry...

to save money.

Ken Campbell has good thoughts on this combination of tragedy and outrage:

Do these Senators have no shame? Is the pursuit of a political agenda worth using a family's pain and torment for political gain?

It's all here:


Allright, let's go somewhere else...I belated Saint Patty's day frivolity, this one came in the email from Susan:

The Coors rep, the Budweiser rep and the Guinness rep go into a bar. The first orders a Coors Lite, the next orders a Bud Light, the Guinness rep says

"Well then, In the spirit of brotherhood,

bring me a glass of ice water too."

Now for an alternate Creation theory...required teaching in Cobb County Georgia:

...Now naturally you will ask "Mr. Fafnir well where did all these leprechauns come from?" Well they were put there by a giant leprechaun, or macroleprechaun as leprechaun scientists say, on account of leprechology is too complex to have originated without giant leprechaun intelligence. The macroleprechaun controls all gravity through the universal leprechaun field, but we can't see im cause he is too big! Wow!...

Dare you to read:




Friday, March 18, 2005

Another day older and Deeper in Debt

Maybe Commander Rapid should have written this one. Actually I haven't personally visited the Commander in a few months. I need to float down the creek and check on him to see how he fared this winter's floods.

To paraphrase an old coal miner's song:

48 tons and what do you get?

...a 170% increase in the rate of autism!

President Bush is parading around taking credit for reducing mercury in our environment.

That's nice...except that he violated the law and his marketing department fails to mention that Bush's regulations double the time allowed and cut only half the mercury required by the Clean Air Act.

This, folks, is a baby killer!

We have the technology to kill mercury pollution rfrom coal fired power plants right now! It won't cost that much and the law actually requires it. TVA has this in process but wants to take more time to do it. Why?

Money! In a business, you delay capital expenditures, you make money. So what if you kill a few babies, it's the bottom line we're talking about here. Where are your priorities, man? This is an OWNERSHIP SOCIETY! You own power company stock...

It's a GOOD THING. (screw the rest of you!)

"Autism has increased dramatically over the last decade or so and the reasons for that have really stumped the medical community," Miller said.

SAN ANTONIO, Texas (Reuters) - Mercury released primarily from coal-fired power plants may be contributing to an increase in the number of cases of autism, a Texas researcher said on Wednesday.

The main finding is that for every thousand pounds of environmentally released mercury, we saw a 17 percent increase in autism rates," she said in an interview....


(EPA) sources contend that they were explicitly told by Jeffrey R. Holmstead, head of EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation, that such studies would not be conducted partly because of “White House concern.”37 Buckheit and other EPA veterans say they cannot recall another instance when the agency’s technical experts were so thoroughly shut out of the process in developing a major regulatory proposal. According to Buckheit, the incident is representative of “a degree of politicization of the work of the Environmental Protection Agency that goes beyond anything I have seen in my career in government.”38

That is from a very disturbing article from the Union of Concerned Scientists. The EPA scientists were cut out of the process...illegally, I might add...and no fewer than 12 paragraphs affecting the core of these regulations were lifted straight out of documents prepared by the power industry's own lawyers.

Good info and well written...for a scientist, anyway:

Union of Concerned Scientists



"Bill Clinton is recovering -- they put a tiny camera right inside of him and Ken Starr said why didn't I think of that." --Bill Maher

"I understand how [Michael Jackson] would be nervous. The witness on the stand yesterday, by all accounts he is very believable and every credible -- until he started talking about how Social Security was going bankrupt." --Bill Maher

"During an interview Condoleezza Rice describes her stance on abortion as 'mildly pro-choice,' which means she would support abortion, except in cases where the mother is pregnant." --Amy Poehler

Thursday, March 17, 2005

I hear the voice...I first heard it in commercials for Ronald Reagan...and the voice said,

"It's morning in America," deep reassuring sonorous tone.


I heard the same voice many times in later years, mostly fabricated in the same manner. Bought and electronically produced. It is not a real voice. No one actually speaks that way. And the voice nearly always lies!

It was not "morning in America" even though we now have airports named after the figure head Reagan, a formerly poor actor, in money as well as finance. He could be dressed in fine suits and paraded around as if he were alive. And when he had served their purposes, they made him rich by buying his house in Texas for ten times what it was worth and having him read a short paragraph in Japan and shake some hands for two million dollars and some Ramen soup.

As his presidency wore on, they hid him from those who would ask him questions. He could not answer them...he was senile and could not remember his lines.

Correcting that problem in our current Presidency, the folks who run America do not let George Bush answer questions either. No one gets to ask him anything his keepers have not decided upon beforehand. This way only questions they want answered get asked, and they have time to train their performing monkey to answer in tones that are carefully modified by the "sound man." Listen to him talk, why don't you? Every time he speaks, you will hear the sound of the same public address system used in the largest of Baptist churches. It is the sound of a small weak man and it is transformed, not by the majesty of grace but by the science of electronics, into the voice of God.

Listen to the "voice". It is deep and reassuring..."It's morning in America" it says, as the snows of Kilimanjaro melt forever away.

"It's morning in America" it says, as the Antarctic glacial shelf warms and breaks away forever in pieces the size of small countries.

"It's morning in America"...As the glaciers of Alaska recede to uncover barren rock that hasn't seen the sunlight since Mastodons walked upon it.

"It's morning in America," ...As more of the oldest life forms on the earth fall to the lumberman's saw..."Salvaged" says the voice..."Saved" says the voice as the three centuries old trees are dismembered and hauled away on trucks.

Then the voice changed...

"Be very very afraid!" it said.

"Some mean men ten thousand miles away might hurt you."..."Give us all your power so we can protect you!" The voice told us.

The factories that pay for the voice will kill or make sick well over a hundred thousand Americans every year but four years ago some mean men killed less than three thousand Americans so we must fear these invisible men.

The voice said so...

You will be sleep, my minion, sleeeeep...It is the wicked Witch of the West, but she sounds nice, she must be nice, hear how nice she sounds?...sleeep, my will be morning in America again...just give us everything, give us everything... and it will be all right.

Don't worry about anything...except stearoids in baseball, Michael Jackson's sex life, Robert Blake gets away with murder because she deserved it, Go vols, you'll never see a polar bear, who cares if one more piece of the earth as god made it will be destroyed so you can drive to the beach one more time before that oil is all used up and you have to destroy another piece of creation to feed your craving and then we'll just destroy another piece, and then another, but the masters will be rich and your children will be sick but it's allright because you'll be safe from whoever it is, I forget now, and anyway....says the voice....

"It's morning in America!"




General J.C. Christian:

...Somewhere behind me I heard someone yell, "That man's a Negro!" Things weren't looking good.

Then you spoke. You said, "I want to boldly affirm Uncle Tom," and the mumbling stopped....

...We know that Uncle Tom won't beat us up, but somewhere in the back of our minds, we wonder if he might not steal the silverware. That's why I think you should modify your message by asking the black community to embrace Steppin Fetchit...


Press Secretary Scott McClellan officially confirmed that the White House is blowing off the Government Accountability Office's finding that prepackaged administration video news releases constitute illegal covert propaganda. – Dan Froomkin,
Washington Post

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Hon. Lincoln Davis

Hey, Lincoln!

I know you have lots to do up in Washington, like voting to pass a resolution calling on President Bush to call for a year of studying languages, which is obviously some kind of in house joke that I don't get. I mean it's pretty obvious that George W. Bush aint all that big on studying a foreign language since he can't even speak English all that well. Oh yeah, and my son got admitted to college anyway after the University agreed to waive the foreign language requirement because our Tennessee school system doesn't provide it. So this must be a good resolution for you to vote for it and all, but would mind getting on to another little resolution that's sitting on your desk?

This resolution could be a big deal about saving America and helping Democrats. You remember Democrats don't you, Lincoln? I mean you don't vote with them all that much but that is your party, isn't it?

Anyway, this resolution is

What do you know about Jeff Gannon?

Hey, I know he is a gay hooker but he got into the Whitehouse in a big way.

His ad on a gay hookup site says, "I leave impressions, not marks!" Now it would be a lot of fun to work on that nice visual picture of Gannon, whose real name is James Dale Guckert, giving fence post rides to high Whitehouse officials, but actually that isn't the problem,

unless you consider blackmail of high Whitehouse officials and heads of foreign governments to be a problem.

Nope. The real problem is that Jeff Gannon:

1. Announced the Iraq invasion four hours before the President did,

(That one bothers me more than any of the others for some reason)

2. Was given access to classified CIA documents.

3. Was the source for outing a CIA agent (an act of treason in this case, not the "outing" we usually think of in Jeffy/Jim's case)

4. Was the source of stories planted by the Bush Whitehouse in his role of Fake Newsman at Fake News Agency, Talon News, run by Boby Eberle, who publicly thanked Karl Rove for his "guidance"

5. Received Whitehouse Press credentials under a false name, gaining access to the Whitehouse and President Bush, who called him by his first fake name at Whitehouse news conferences.

and, (this is a juicy one)

claims to have "entertained" British Prime Minister Tony Blair on a Whitehouse visit.


Here is a Gannon- Karl Rove timeline that fascinates me. Karl Rove is an evil, evil person.

Tommy, 2002 is for you:


And here is the big compedium of all that would make you want to puke about this whole sordid mess. Keep this reference.

If you would please sign the resolution, Lincoln, it could come in handy:


I mean just a little bit of your time taken from promoting languages, put toward saving America, would be a big help, and I would appreciate it.

Thanks, Lincoln, old Friend,


Tuesday, March 15, 2005

America Naturally

Natural causes?

They died of natural causes. You know, like getting beaten to death? Naturally?

I hear the music playing behind the new Army recruiting ad....

Uncle Sam wants you!...

"And all you have to do is....Act Naturally"

"American military officials in Afghanistan initially said the deaths of Mr. Habibullah, in an isolation cell on Dec. 4, 2002, and Mr. Dilawar, in another such cell six days later, were from natural causes. Lt. Gen. Daniel K. McNeill, the American commander of allied forces in Afghanistan at the time, denied then that prisoners had been chained to the ceiling or that conditions at Bagram endangered the lives of prisoners."

Turns out that we Americans beat these men so badly that had one of them survived, his legs would have had to be cut off.


Now we find that we are torturing folks not only in Iraq and Afghanistan, but in Guantanamo. And hey, if we need to torture somebody we happen to have detained in America, we just put 'em on a plane to one of our good friends who will torture them for us.

Look Ma, my hands are clean!

Fafblog is good satire. The best satire. Satire about god and screaming monkeys, and of course, torture to save America!

Reports of American torture and complicity in torture have become increasingly alarming, as new information reveals the widespread participation of the CIA in torturing prisoners, rendering them to other countries to be tortured, kidnapping them from other countries to be rendered to other countries, hiding them from oversight as "ghost detainees" - most of these activities either duplicated by or in conjunction with the United States military. As a pattern of systematic torture and abuse emerges within the intelligence and security community, we are forced to ask ourselves: is America doing enough torture?


Well, Duh! Senator....

Check Lisa at AHNC for Bill Frists's cartoon:

What's this? Evangelicals want to save the earth?

And god said, "This is a test...only a test!

But if you don't know the answer, you can't come in.....Bwa ha haaaaa!"

The Rev. Rich Cizik, vice president of governmental affairs for the National Association of Evangelicals and a significant voice in the debate, said, "I don't think God is going to ask us how he created the earth, but he will ask us what we did with what he created."

This gives me hope!

Eco evangelical



Monday, March 14, 2005


"These four wheelers are just Terrorists! That's all they are. They sneak in, don't ask permission, and they tear up your land! They've torn down my fences, run through my woods, and they've got ditches started everywhere...and when they're done tearing things up they throw down their trash and just drive away."

The man was leaning on his pickup truck which was covered with Right wing bumper stickers. "Republican and proud of it" said one of them. It had handguns on both sides pointing to the word republican.

I think I will like Mitch, though I made a mental note never to discuss politics with him. A history teacher turned brickmason, he owns property next to mine and lives there with his pretty wife and big eyed, curly haired, daughter, who looked to be about 9 or 10. Why anyone would risk making this man angry is a mystery to me. More than just powerfully built, Mitch seems like he could crush one of his bricks in each hand if he forgot to be careful. He is a man in his prime who lifts weights all day for a of those men who has to buy flannel shirts a size too large just so he can button them up over his chest.

I saw him standing at his truck in front of the house he is building, block by block as he has time. The new roof trusses lying ready to install tell me that spring has given rise to a new flurry of energy and the homestead was about to take a giant leap forward. I recognized the style of house as being like those I'd seen in Germany and made instant friends with Mitch as he beamed and talked away about his dream of building a house to last three hundred years instead of thirty, like people seem to do nowadays.

When they first meet, new neighbors need to talk about the sun, the moon, the stars, and anything else they might be able to find in common. In this case it was hunting, always a safe topic in Tennessee. Mitch is a hunter of the most serious kind. He had twenty or so dogs on well maintained runs placed fifty yards from his house. And he had something else...a hog pen with a hog in it.

Not just your average old hog, either. I'm used to seeing pens made of scrap pallets and wire out behind houses in the country. Raising your own hog is a time honored thing to do out here, and lordy the meat tastes so much better than that bland factory pig you get at the grocery store. It's hard to accept that it comes from the same animal. Compared to a country raised pig, the stuff from town "tastes like chicken!" Which is to say, "Don't have no taste!"

But Mitch didn't have any farm animal in his meticulously constructed pen...Instead, there stood the most beautiful European boar I've ever seen, shining black, without a mark on him, and hackles running like a spike waxed mohawk completely down his spine from one end to the other. Another boar was in the pen, too, a rough looking beast, slightly smaller, but with big tushes poking out of his lower jaw indicating well, the business end of a hog.

"Caught that one today," Mitch said. "His nose is still all swollen from the dogs holding on to him. I've got good dogs. You need good dogs when you have to crawl into a briar patch and drag out a hog. You have to know they're going to hang on to him."

"Damn!" I thought, but just smiled at Mitch.

The hog stood calmly and watched us. Beaten, for the moment, but ready to tear his way out of captivity if even a crack of opportunity arises. He never took his eyes off of us until we walked away.

At the end of a hog hunt when dogs are used, there are two ways to get the hog. One man in the hunt group can shoot the animal with a pistol at close range to make sure no dog gets hurt...or you can do like Mitch does...grab the hog and wrestle it into a wire cage with your own hands, a personal communion with a fierce prey that I don't think I will ever myself experience.

Four wheelers dump their garbage on this man's land.

What fools they are!




Spring has brought out the tiniest of wildflowers in the last week. Amongst those flowers is this nice new member of the Rocky Top Brigade:

Mountain Laureate


Here is a perfect example of why we need graven monuments with things like "Thy Shalt not Lie, or Steal" in public places...I am almost positive that if you put up signs like that saying these are commandments from god, or at least some old Jewish guy who claims they are, then no godly person would dare lie or steal...

So guess what?

The most corporate and godly Baptists are being investigated for a couple of commandment violations.

The Baptists are being investigated for:

"Medicaid fraud, obstruction of justice, and money laundering..."

The Attorney General of Mississippi has opened a criminal investigation into the Jackson-based Baptist Health Systems...

"Federal investigators had developed a strong fraud case, and perhaps an even stronger obstruction of justice case, based in part on recorded conversations with top Baptist executives."

Trent Lott had the investigation nixed, though he denies this:

“Senator Lott has had absolutely no contact with any of the parties to this investigation, nor has he asked or authorized any member of his staff to intervene in this matter.”

Well the local FBI agents and Prosecutor say he did! And they turned over their information to the local state Attorney General of Mississippi picked the ball up and ran with it.

"...sources close to the aborted federal investigation told Corporate Crime Reporter this week that while Senator Lott and staff may not have been directly involved with the case, “there are a number of people that the Senator uses in a capacity with no direct connections with him to apply political pressure” and that “the U.S. Attorney’s office, career staff, even possibly the U.S. Attorney himself are upset with the intervention that has occurred.”

Let me shorten that for you...Trent Lott has stooges to do his dirty work...but he's going down anyway!


Thursday, March 10, 2005

bear with me

A small child descends the staircase dragging his stuffed bear by the leg. Let's give the bear a consciousness and peer into his thoughts. What would the bear think, if it could, being dragged against its inclination down onto the nest step, landing on its head each time. But don't worry, bear! You will be able to have the extreme pleasure of watching the rest of us dine in elegance once we reach the bottom of the stairs and go into the dining room. Sure, I know you can't eat, but you will have the pleasure of watching your betters enjoy themselves. Your pain and suffering will be well worth us.

Winnie the Pooh as metaphor for human existance:

Here is Edward Bear, coming downstairs now, bump, bump, bump, on the back of his head, behind Christopher Robin. It is, as far as he knows, the only way of coming downstairs, but sometimes he feels that there really is another way, if only he could stop bumping for a moment and think of it.

(Via ARCHY at johnmckay)

Everywhere I turn I see folks doing exactly the same thing. Wanting change but being caught up in bumping their head over and over in the same old way.

"Well if my head would just quit hitting the things I'm bumping it into, I could change the things I'm bumping my head into", people will say.

Sorry to be cynical about humans but I'm watching the School board in action right now. The members that get it are bogged down by the members who don't even know they don't get it.

For instance, which problem do you think the school board is falling all over themselves to fix:

Problem number one. Raw sewage is overflowing into a hallway in the highschool.

Problem number two. The roof in an administrative building has a slight leak in the flashing above one office in a mostly empty building.

If you said the School Board will most likely spend way too much money on the roof, since that involves administrators and not people's children, you would be right on the order of nearly $100,000.00. They sill have the chance to "Get it". We'll see.

Phrase of the day:

"Faith based Reality"

So, the bankruptcy bill comes down to Chuck Schumer's (D-NY) amendment that would prevent persons convicted of crimes from discharging civil judgments, levied as a result of the crimes, in bankruptcy court. Read that again if you want but I'll rephrase it:

Republican Senators voted to let convicted criminals get away with their crimes by declaring bankruptcy.

Republican Senators voted to let creditors keep hounding American soldiers driven into bankrupcy because they were called into service in Iraq and lost their jobs.

Bubba has a good take on it. Be sure to read the comments. Funny!


A group called The Velvet Revolution has the silly notion that we ought to be able to actually count the votes cast in an American Democratic Election. They want a law to that effect, demanding a paper trail of electronic votes. Seem simple enough, right?

This man "resembles that remark":

Howard Van Pelt, CEO of Advanced Voting Systems, was more frank about his opposition.

“What in the hell are these people talking about?” Van Pelt asked. “They think we're all crooks, and I resent that!”

Well, maybe...What the Velvet Revolution wants is for all electronic voting machines to have a verifiable paper trail that can be counted and recounted visually. The machine manufacturers, Republican contributers every single one, are screaming that it is too expensive and hard to do...

But...These are the very same people who give you a paper receipt every time you use an ATM.

Mr. Van Pelt, Something is very very fishy here!


Even the freakin' Russians are feeling holier than us!

the world’s most important democracy which is quickly becoming a laughing stock. Even Putin or one of his deputies told Bush, ‘Why are you lecturing us about democracy? Look at your own elections,’ which is troubling, I think.”

Problems with electronic voting machines have been documented by more than 50,000 complaints received in the 2004 election concerning observed malfunctions.

W's Hometown rag



Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Song of the South

Well, I wish I was in the Land of Cotton, Old times there, are not forgotten....
Look Ah Waaaaayy!....And get ready for some crawfishing!

Here's the News:

"As part of its 2006 budget proposal, the Bush administration would trim benefits for growers of most staple crops, including wheat, corn and soybeans. But economists and officials say the hardest hit would be the big producers of cotton in Republican strongholds of Texas, Mississippi, Arkansas, Tennessee, Alabama and Georgia....

The U.S. Department of Agriculture projects that cotton farmers will gobble up a quarter of farm subsidy payments this year, with most going to a few hundred big growers...
The president's decision to take on the farm lobby has caught many by surprise. He gave no hint of it during his reelection campaign, which was based on winning the South and most of the upper Midwest farm states. The president himself comes from a major cotton-producing state....

Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.)... has yet to spell out his position...."

(I believe that would be the "doggy" postition in Senator Frist's case.)


I killed a cat once, too, Senator Frist, so I feel your pain! Of course I didn't mean to run over it and I didn't lie to anybody about it, just so I could cut open its head and play with its brain like you did...

And I didn't lie to anybody, telling them that I was going to take really good care of the cat, and give it a good home, and then...Take the cat home...

cut open its chest and cut out its still beating heart!...Like you did Senator Frist.

And something else, I felt bad, and you didn't. You didn't feel bad about lying! That was your sin, Senator.

So what are you going to do now? Your President, the one you lied for on a hundred occaissions has stabbed you, doggy style, right in the old ass. His new budget proposal will cut the heart out of one of your biggest constituencies...Corporate Agribiz. You know...the Memphis branch of King Cotton.

Senator, you and your Conservative moron (Ok, I know that's redundant) friends bent over and lied for George and now he hits you right in the bank account but proposing to cut Millions from the Federal blood money paid to your farmer friends. He is going to cut your Farmer welfare from $360,000 pre farm all the way to $250,000. Of course we know it's much worse than that because your Agribiz friends actually run paper sham farms that let's them collect millions each in "Welfare".

Well I know how you Conservatives hate "Welfare" so this will be fine with you, right? And I know you really have to knawing your other arm off to get out from under the Coyote Ugly fact that Bush's boss, Dick Cheney still owns huge amounts of Halliburton stock by way of his own little mutual fund, and Halliburton has gobbled up ten times the amount of money Bush is cutting from your Cotton farmer friends welfare check. Why hell, John Negroponte Lost more money than that while he was running Iraq!

Why does Bush have to screw you and your friends, Bill? This is small change, right?

Once or twice upon a time, Senator Frist, I myself picked cotton. I know you and I have both killed cats but I doubt if you've ever picked cotton.

I worked in a cotton field right along side maybe fifty or so black men and women and their children and I liked it. I liked it because I didn't have to do it, really, and it was fun being a 12 year old kid out in a Georgia field standing right in the middle of a Black acapella chorus singing about the hot sun and gettin' the bossman's work done for him. I liked how those folks worked all day and smiled all day too.

I remember white teeth and big grins and knowing I was different, but it was fun. Those folks are all out of work anyway, now. Dead or old. They were replaced by a machine decades ago and the poisons they put on the fields are even worse now, but at least DDT is gone. But now you face the layoff of thousands of...Machines! if President Bush's budget goes through as it is now, those poor machines will be out of work, left to rust in the fields. Your cotton farmer friends claim they'll have to switch to soybeans or wuit farming altogether and go work in a factory...Oh wait! Senator you've ruined the manufacturing sector in America, haven't you?

There are no factory jobs to speak of, are there Senator?

I guess all your cotton farmer friends can go to work in Wal-Mart selling each other Chinese made stuff, eh?


Courage, Dr. Frist. There's always plenty of cats left for you to play with.

Looks like old George is taking you down, just so's you won't be in Jeb's way in 08.

That's the way a Pimp gotta do a HO, Bill.

Nothing personal.




Lifted shamelessly from


Newspaper Humor
1. The Wall Street Journal is read by people who run the country.

2. The Washington Post is read by people who think they run the country.

3. The New York Times is read by people who think they should run the country and who are very good at crossword puzzles.

4. USA Today is read by people who think they ought to run the country but don't really understand The New York Times. They do, however, like their statistics shown in pie charts.

5. The Los Angeles Times is read by people who wouldn't mind running the country, if they could find the time -- and if they didn't have to leave Southern California to do it.

6. The Boston Globe is read by people whose parents used to run the country and did a far superior job of it, thank you very much.

7. The New York Daily News is read by people who aren't too sure who's running the country and don't really care as long as they can get a seat on the train.

8. The New York Post is read by people who don't care who's running the country as long as they do something really scandalous, preferably while intoxicated.

9. The Miami Herald is read by people who are running another country but need the baseball scores.

10. The San Francisco Chronicle is read by people who aren't sure there is a country or that anyone is running it; but if so, they oppose all that they stand for. There are occasional exceptions if the leaders are handicapped minority feminist atheist dwarfs who also happen to be illegal aliens from any other country or galaxy provided, of course, that they are not Republicans.

11. The National Enquirer is read by people trapped in line at the grocery store.

12. None of these is read by the guy who is running the country... into the ground.

Monday, March 07, 2005

A Relative we just met

Scientists used to argue whether human ancestors developed higher thinking processes before they started walking on two feet, or if it was the act of balancing on two feet as opposed to four, that made thinking an advantage. Now the evidence is overwhemlmingly on the side of the brain having to pay catch up with the opposable thumbs. It appears from all available evidence that bipedalism freed these marvelous appendages from the duties of hanging on to tree limbs or having to be placed on the ground to keep the face out of puddles, thus making them capable of holding poker cards, firing weapons, and typing. In my case, at this very moment, I still have six fingers and two amazing thumbs just hanging out with not much to do except to get in the way of the two digits that are actually doing all the typing...faithful readers will note that the "higher thinking processes" are also just hanging out waiting for something to usual.

So anyway, scientists just announced that in a region of Ethiopia called, "Afar" (nope, not making that up) they have found a fossilized skeleton, 40% of it anyway, that has been determined to be of a bipedal human-like creature. Dating processes are very complicated these days but the range of age has been determined to be between 3.8 million and 4 million years old. Several independant methods are used involving radioactive isotope decay and dating of not only the fossils themselves but the dirt and rock strata in which they are found. This is a very time consuming and tedious process and the dates will tighten up considerably when all the work is complete. There is little question that this being walked the earth around one million years before the famous human ancestor, "Lucy", who lived about 2.8 to 3.2 million years ago.
"This is the world's oldest biped," Bruce Latimer, director of the natural history museum in Cleveland, Ohio, told a news conference in the Ethiopian capital, adding that "it will revolutionise the way we see human evolution".

The bones were found three weeks ago in Ethiopia's Afar region, at a site some 60 kilometres from Hadar where Lucy, one of the first hominids, was discovered in 1974.

What makes this a big deal is the structure of the ankles in this skeleton. It could stand up on two legs and walk around in the manner similar to modern humans.

So far four skeletons of different human ancestors have been found, each one a link in human evolution that is no longer missing. We have also found "side branches" in the human family tree, such as the famous hobbit-like creature from Indonesia that just made the news and the well known Neandertal man.

Darwinian theory predicts that there were such links and side branches. Archaeological finds such as this one fill in the blanks of our evolutionary history. Contrary to what Creationists claim, Evolution is not a theory at all! It is a fact. It happened. And Darwinian science proves it by the hypothesis/theory, prediction, and determination.

Most often Evolution gets verified by little things... Sometimes... by big ones like this new finding in Ethiopia.

A spokesman from the Creationist Institute, when told of the new fossil find, said,

"I CAN'T HEAR YOU...LA, LA, LA, LA....!"



And now for some higher mental functions:

"Theology asserts propositions that need not be proven true, while ideologues hold stoutly to a world view despite being contradicted by what is generally accepted as reality. The combination can make it impossible for a democracy to fashion real-world solutions to otherwise intractable challenges."


"We had to struggle with the old enemies of and financial monopoly, speculation, reckless banking, class antagonism, sectionalism, war profiteering.

They had begun to consider the Government of the United States as a mere appendage to their own affairs. We know now that Government by organized money is just as dangerous as Government by organized mob."


Thursday, March 03, 2005

Won't you come home, Juanita Jean

Oh Spring is coming and it is the time for love. Sometimes it all works out and sometimes all that personal grooming goes for naught...gut wrenching emotions, fears, and hopes dashed upon the shoals of despair.

I know such despair.

In the dark year of 2004, not only did my beloved country fall deeper into the evil clutches of rougues, but Juanita Jean closed her beauty shop and left town, ripping a hole in the fabric of what little pleasure this nasty world deems to give a poor downtrodden soul.

Was it something I said? I know I shoulda been more helpful in the kitchen, and I guess I coulda left my boots on the porch instead of stinking up the living room, and I woulda taken you out more but, honey it was huntin' season and all...

Well I wrote some letters hoping Juanita Jean would come to her senses and realize how selfish she was being, wanting a personal life of her own like that...

November 2004

I'll miss you terrible. Intelligent life in this universe is hard to find. Come back whenever...All will be forgiven, no matter where you bin' , or who you bin' with...well almost, anyway.




February 2005

Sorry, I know you must have tons to do, but I miss you. It ain't the same, darlin', since you closed the shop, left, and went back to Momma. I'm still not sure what I did but that's a man's Lott in this old world. We never really know till it's too late to fix.

If there's anything I can do to help open Juanita's back up just say it...'cept for sending the back alimony checks, that is...a man's got pride when he aint got nothin' else, you know! Ain't got no money to send anyway since they closed the mill and started makin' the widgets in China. Lost my job as a greeter at Wal-mart when they found out Daddy voted for Kerry, but I can still make enough to catch a good buzz selling pee to the high school kids on the football team. King Cotton peach brandy don't show up in the "pee in the bottle tests", they say.

Anyway, just tested the link and see you're still depressed and layin' low, so I thought I'd say Hi.

Drop us a line if you feel like it. I saw a story on that Zoloft stuff so you better lay off it for a while, girl. it'll be allright, again, I promise...or it won't.

Love ya,



Well a man has to face reality, dammit, so I had about given up hope. I started hanging around other beauty shops but it twern't the same. Sure there was that nice perm chemical smell and nasty gossip, but Nobody but Juanita Jean had that perky snark going all day long. She could laugh real raunchy and smile sweetly and snip a local politician's left gonad off, throw it on the ground, and stomp it, before he even had time to spend his illegal campaign contributions.

I was hoping something would happen to bring the girl to her senses, but no...Tom Delay hasn't been indicted. Still there's always hope, even when the good times have faded to a wisp of bittersweet memory...

Then yesterday, I got this in the mail:

I had just about decided to quit this whole website business. There ain’t much money in it, and everybody whines like the dickens if you want to take some time off from entertaining them for free. But I keep getting hacked-off. And Lord knows that Tom DeLay’s name is gonna be in the news a lot and I just gotta have a place to snicker at him in public.

The World’s Most Dangerous Beauty Salon, Inc. is semi-almost-kinda back in business. I’m hoping to get a day pass to the White House pressroom. If Jeff Gannon is qualified, then Juanita Jean should be day pass valedictorian.


(Susan is just a fake name Juanita Jean uses, sometmes, to keep the tax people off her back, I think)

Oh, joy and jubilation! Damn, I can't wait to see her again. I might even get down on my knees and...and...scrub a toilet, if she'll really come back.

In her very own words she said:

Please join in the fun.

I've mentioned Juanita Jean to all you folks in earlier happier days and now she's back. Go see her, won't you? I have just one question though...What the heck is ocramole?

Love ya,


Juanita can start real soon helping Tom Delay pry one foot out of his mouth so he can stick the other one right back in...

DeLay also criticized the AARP, which claims a membership of 35 million people 50 and over and opposes the central tenet of Bush's proposal. The Texan said it was "incredibly irresponsible of AARP to be against a solution that hasn't been written yet," and he accused the group of hypocrisy...

OK, that was Tom Delay accusing someone else of hypocrisy!

Folks, we can't make that stuff up if we tried. Way too funny.

Tom, you lizard!

I don't know if being reasonable and telling the truth works with Tom Delay but some folks are trying:

AARP spokesman David Certner said the organization was opposed to "the central notion of trying to improve Social Security solvency by taking money out of Social Security. Even the administration has acknowledged that taking money out of Social Security does nothing to solve the solvency problem."

Truth comes easiest from the comedians:

“The United Nations said today that by the year 2050, the world's population will increase by forty percent. That increase will occur mostly in countries that currently struggle to provide adequate healthcare and education. Hey, that's us!” – Jay Leno

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

I feel good

We had a few minutes of winter yesterday. I thought it was nice to actually get some use out of my vast assortment of cold weather gear without having to drive to West Virginia. Last night was crystal clear and every beast in the gorge seemed to be irritating the dogs, and they, in turn irritated us by yipping all night.

Odd to note the trill of an Eastern toad calling for a girlfriend in the middle of a snow flurry. Toad, old buddy, I know the spring you're sitting in stays at a nice toasty 58 degrees but don't be looking for any honeys to be hoppin' through this mess just now. Give it a few days.

A couple of things struck me as curious, yesterday. Check these statistics first:

The United States is 49th in the world in literacy (The New York Times, Dec. 12, 2004).
• The United States ranked 28th out of 40 countries in mathematical literacy

So the US is kinda behind in our schooling. 49th to be exact, and Tennessee is 46th out of 50 so that kinda makes us pretty much the stupidest of the stupid. It's really the underachievingest of the underachievers...we are not dumb, we're just plain SORRY!

So what did our state legislature do yesterday, given this dire state of the educational system with our children's future at stake?

My state senator, Tommy Kilby, and his buddies passed a bill to amend the constitution to ban Gay Marriage.

Great, guys! Glad you morons are keeping your eye on what's important!

A couple of us were sitting around laughing at this and counted up five failed marriages among us, and you know what? Near as we could figure, Gays didn't have anything to do with any of our marriages going bad, so how the heck is this protecting our families?

Wouldn't the money be better spent working on getting a textbook for my tenth grade son's Geometry class?

(Hey Tyler! Why doesn't he have a book to bring home, anyway?)

From the mail:

Long time old friend. hey. Just read your Blog about the Hoe Down. Yeah. Old Crow kills it. Love them . man it makes me miss the Southland. Hope all is treating you well. I'll be thinking about you and your coffee high up on the TN plateau. Tell the family I said hi.


And from South Carolina on the ethics of our legislature:

Tennessee hasn't taken up the Republican strategy of naming bills as the OPPOSITE of what they'll really do?

Shouldn't Republicans be promoting this bill as the: "Clean Waters Executive Honesty & Disclosure Act".


I note that with the Supreme Court ruling against capital punishment for children, and we get this:

Under the headline, "United States leaves Somalia in isolation" the world has learned that the US has finallly outlawed the execution of children.

"And crown thy good..." Makes you feel good to be an American, eh?

Among developed nations, there are only two that still have the death penalty, The USA and Japan. Charlie has a good take on this:


Ann Coulter's America:

It's an America where the Guardians of Democracy have stamped out the last traitorous vestiges of political opposition, an America where all patriots are required to hold a singular, party-approved opinion, an America where television reflects the officially sanctioned values of the Glorious Conservative Christian Revolution and celebrations of sodomy embodied in shows like Will and Grace are replaced by news magazines featuring ideologically-friendly, God-fearing harlots.


An excerpt from Fanatical Apathy juxtaposes events of our world:

Cate Blanchett, radiating a cool Hollywood glamour, won Best Supporting Actress for her portrayal in "The Aviator" of Katharine Hepburn. Others, their limbs ripped to shreds, were piled into the back of pick-up trucks. Nearby buildings were pockmarked by shrapnel. People wept, clutched their heads in despair and shouted "God is greatest" as rescuers led the injured away.


Wanna feel good about America?

"The U.S. and South Africa are the only two developed countries in the world that do not provide health care for all their citizens"

The United States is 41st in the world in infant mortality. Cuba scores higher (NYT, Jan. 12, 2005).
• Women are 70% more likely to die in childbirth in America than in Europe (NYT, Jan. 12, 2005).

• The leading cause of death of pregnant women in this country is murder (CNN, Dec. 14, 2004).

There's a lot more that should piss you off:




"Last week North Korea publicly admitted for the first time it has nuclear weapons. The Bush administration has so far shown very little concern, as the North Korean missiles are believed only capable of reaching the Blue States." --Jon Stewart on North Korea's nuclear weapons program

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Ok, friends, I know you hate me. I accept that and in my heart, I know I deserve it. You hate me because as soon as there is enough light, I will make my grand entrance to this morning's world through the new snowfall and luxuriate in the first sting of my immersion into a well heated tub of water mounted upon the lower deck and overlooking White's Creek Gorge.

Hate me all you want...nyaah, nyaah, na, nyaah, nyaah!

OK, so this is how winter is supposed to be. Light snow and cold.

As a matter of fact...I don't even think I'm going to finish this right now. Back in a bit.

In the meantime, Bush is losing the Social Security debate.

Blogger Atrios says it best:

Most Americans do not want Mr. Bush to borrow $2 trillion to cut Social Security benefits and replace guaranteed benefits for seniors with guaranteed fees for stockbrokers. That's why, in a recent NPR poll, just 31 percent of Americans, only 31 percent, support Mr. Bush's privatization plan.
And yet rumors abound that Democrats, perhaps even former vice presidential candidate Joe Lieberman, will find a compromise that allows Mr. Bush to succeed in privatizing part of Social Security. Look, any Democrat who rescues Mr. Bush's assault on Social Security ought to be defeated in a primary and allowed to begin their own retirement early.