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Friday, November 30, 2007

American Hero


R.I.P. -- Evel Knievel

Coalition of the Lap Dogs


Does anyone know how many of our "partners-in-warcrimes" are left in Iraq? Does anyone know how many governments have toppled because of an elected leader's support of George Bush's War? Didn't Bush lose Spain and Portugal that way? (and Poland, and ........)

Australia is not far behind. Their troops will be leaving, too.

A Holy Road

On our journey to Mexico, we traveled along a few highways that actually advertised themselves as being segments of the future NAFTA SuperHighway. Of course, our own Interstate 69 (Port Huron's) is an integral piece of the proposed system connecting Canada, the United States, and Mexico. Having traveled along the NAFTA SuperHighway to our new home is somewhat special. Free Trade, indeed.

While reading The Daily Dish, I found an article about another superhighway. This is certainly special.

I am reminded of how incredibly astonished I was when we traveled through eastern Missouri. Interstate 44 was littered with billboards advertising all of the titty bars and clubs located along that road. Nowhere had we seen anything like it.

Missouri. Saintly, conservative Mo. The "Show Me State" isn't so shy and mighty.

Perhaps, the Christianists should protest along that highway.......

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Next?

Most folks familiar with "recovery" counseling know the old story about the guy that keeps walking down the same street and who keeps falling into the same hole. You know. It's the story/definition of insanity.

Change streets! Go another way. How stupid are we when we continue the same-old-same-old and somehow expect things to change? When we do "new" things, does anything really ever change? Is it always "the same shit" but a different day? It seems so sometimes.

Disappointment and fear can kill all momentum. Losing your way and losing HOPE can create one huge hole in the road.

So, what's next?

If I can't capture a new dream, may I at least look forward to what is next? May I hope and trust that I am ready and able to meet it well? May I anticipate success? Do I have the confidence?

It is just around the corner. It is just down the way. It is waiting for me.

It's next.

Hell. I can do this.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

I Tried

I've heard the "Amercan Dream" defined as desiring to make more money and have a "better" life than one's parents. That definition is so very narrow and limited. It focuses on upward mobile economic factors. The American Dream is more than social climbing and money.

We dream of inventing that one idea, the one little gadget or "pet rock" that will make us rich and famous. We dream of travel and adventure. We dream of comfort in our retirement years. We dream of success. We dream.

More. More. More. Better. Better. Better.

Do I still dream? No.

I am where am I. I have a post graduate education. I've traveled. I've been a union leader. Sometime in my early teaching career I was making more money than my Dad. My pension check is much larger than Dad's last paycheck.... I haven't invented anything, written anything special, or been "discovered" to have exceptional talents....

I stopped dreaming during the 10 plus years of chronic pain. My life was over. My career was ended. I was more concerned about obtaining a full pension and avoiding a disability pension... I wanted to reach retirement on my terms...

Over the last few years I have been living from paycheck to paycheck and crisis to crisis. My bipolar disorder can help to explain some of my poor choices and other problems. I really could not afford to retire when I did.....but the pain... I tried and failed...

Here I am. What more do I need?

...a dream.

Too Many Santas


Heaven forbid that we confuse the little kids.......Clio bans Santa.....

American Family

Michiganders my age and older have a "special" relationship with the Romney family. Some of us will remember the former governor of Michigan, George Romney. We should remember Governor Romney's failed bid for the Republican nomination for the presidency. We should remember when Romney went on a fact-finding mission to Vietnam and returned telling us that we'd been "brainwashed" (Gee, just like Iraq?).

I shook his hand. I was just a little kid watching the annual Blue Water International Day Parade and Dad sent me into the street to grasp the governor's hand. Neat, eh?

I've made a few comments about Romney and Mormonism......and will make more. The following political ad is sooooo much like a Mormon TV commercial......(H/T to The Daily Dish)



BTW - I do not support this flip-flopping pandering politician!!!!!

Friday, November 16, 2007

Rubies

This is already causing a stir. Was there a planted question?

'Tis the Silly Season.....

Train Wreck


It only took a few minutes to see that Wolf Blitzer's CNN Presidential Debate would be unwatchable. Why he and his producers decided to broadcast the minutia of grand introductions followed by a cut-away commentator moment is beyond reason. What a freaking waste of time.

It was the Wolf Blitzer Show. It was me me me me look at me me me... And, his questions were incredible stupid. Can I get a show of hands?

I tuned out sometime in the last half of the first hour of Wolfie's Big Show. Did I learn anything new? Nope.

Yes, Senator Joe Biden did have a near tear jerking "American President" moment. It wasn't an "American President" moment for me. Having seen the movie more than half a dozen times, I didn't tear up. Nope, sorry Joe, it was too staged.

The 2008 Presidential Campaign continues....


Oh, and BTW -- would someone please find some honest grown-ups to REPORT the news. Some of these so-called journalists are just plain dumb.

Your Moment of Zen

Pedal-Phile


This bit of news is, well, weird.

Imagine that you are in your rented room having consensual sex with your bicycle and you get caught by the cleaning staff. Yes, bicycle. Yes, rented room.

Busted. Convicted. Sentenced to 3 years of probation. Oh, and don't forget the 3 years on the Sex Offenders' Register.

What a ride!!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Monday, November 12, 2007

Draft Kleeb

Okay. I need to read some articles more completely. There is a Draft Kleeb for U.S. Senate (NE-D) website. Good Luck, Nebraska.

And, a reminder.....

Senator Kleeb?


It seems there is still some interest in Scott Kleeb's public service. This Nebraskan won key endorsements and a respectable number of votes in his failed 2006 bid for Congress. Scott Kleeb is one Democrat to keep an eye on.....

H/T to Daily Kos

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Earth, Wind, Fire, Water, and Leeloo

I've never been to an Italian or German opera. I've been to Godspell (Ford's Theater in Washington, D.C.) and Jesus Christ SuperStar. Oh, I saw Phantom in Toronto. Do those count?

I've never been one to appreciate what I call vocal acrobatics. Ask Billy about how I like "screaming" musical artists. I do like the "opera" vocals in the movie Fifth Element.

Here is one of my favorite scenes.

Bipolar Disorder Sucks

I can deal with a racing mind and insomnia. I can deal with obsessive compulsive actions. Those strange thoughts, however, are just not good.

I've been riding the "high" of hypomania. I can accept the OCD sex. I can accept the OCD computer gaming. It's those really f*&@ed-up thoughts that make me want to run out and get my Lamictal renewed.

I've not been this close to mania in a very long long time. And, I will not be very happy if I am seduced by crazy thinking.

I am not depressed. That's good.

So, for "God Knows" how long, I will be watching myself...

...waiting for the next quick cycle.

She is Not Talking

H/T to Crooks and Liars

Thursday, November 8, 2007

You Helped This Happen

READ


Teachers are predictable sometimes. So are former activists. It only took me 15 minutes to begin to consider JOINING the local political activists when chatting with one of the mucky mucks in the Democratic Party the other day. Being a part of something.....

Nope.

I don't want to commit to anything right now. I'm REALLY retired, now.

I do want to maintain this space. I do get a few ideas and I like to respond to what I read. Telling tales about the bipolar disorder roller coaster is important to me, as well.

I like to be informed. In fact, twice today there was something on cable news that I had already read about online. I even had the Pat Boone story up on my site before it was posted on one of the major sites that I visit every day. I like that.

Not all of my daily reads are "reliable". One blog's staff writer stated that Lou Dobbs was a racist. I've watched him enough to believe otherwise. Yes, his anti-illegal immigration rantings are strident, but sincere. Lou isn't racist, he is a pitchfork patriot. Watch out for that torch!

Read and think for yourself.

Just do it. Stay informed. Be vigilant.

Join with others for support and action if you are so inclined. The important thing is to stay on top of current events. We live in interesting times.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Monday, November 5, 2007

Another Sunny Day


We have another sunny day in Paradise.

Yeah, right.

A fellow blogger with Bipolar Disorder wrote:

"I am SO damned sick of fighting this disorder.

My medication dosage is not high enough to handle my symptoms, but if I go higher, I impact my ability to function at work. And I'm absolutely terrified of losing my income source, or of having it cut significantly.

Because of some personal stuff I went from hypomanic to depressed in a day. I know that can happen to anyone, but I can't concentrate...."


Well, slap me and call me Sally -- My day is f*#ked up, too. I have been enjoying a depression free couple of weeks. I have only had some minor problems sleeping due to my mild hypomania. So, for the most part I have been zooming near the top of the bipolar roller coaster and hadn't been thrown from the ride.

My coaster car just struck bottom. Now, I am afraid of rapid cycling from THIS depression to hypomania and back to depression, again and again. There is no "winning". A major stressor and wham! All of the things I might ordinarily do are seemingly put on hold while I fight just to shower and leave the house right now....

Stuck.

And, I'm at the bottom of the ride. I NEED to take care of some "business" and I am stuck. I just want to curl up into a ball and sleep... I have so much to do and I am stuck. For the first time in a very long time I just want off the damn ride...

There are no "magic" pills to take. I just have to "ride it out".

Tomorrow will be a sunny day, too. I'm in Paradise. I shouldn't have a care in the world.....

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Fake News

Pat Boone Is A Bigot

Are the Westboro Nutters from Kentucky?

My congratulations to Kentucky Governor Ernie Fletcher for his desperate and no doubt effective smear against his Democratic opponent, Steve Beshear. Call him a "Fag Lover" and wait to win re-election.

Pat Boone? He is a bigot. Listen for yourself.


Pat Boone is SO Off Our Christmas Card List


Disgusting.

Revolting.

Asshole.

Republican Governor Ernie Fletcher is two days away from an election. He is 20 points behind in the polls to Democratic challenger Steve Beshear. He sends out an automated telephone message to the people of Kentucky.

"The state GOP is now sending a robo-call throughout the state featuring none other than Pat Boone, warning that as a Christian he is concerned that Democratic nominee Steve Beshear, who has been way ahead in the polls, will work for "every homosexual cause."

"Now do you want a governor who'd like Kentucky to be another San Francisco?" Boone asks. "Please re-elect Ernie Fletcher."

This is a Link to the TMP article -- Listen to the message here.

(H/T to Talking Points Memo)


Live From New York

Goodbye to All That

Andrew Sullivan has an insightful and quite compelling essay about Barack Obama. Please read it.


And, from the speech Barack Obama gave in Chicago on October 2, 2002, five months before the war:


I don’t oppose all wars. And I know that in this crowd today, there is no shortage of patriots, or of patriotism. What I am opposed to is a dumb war. What I am opposed to is a rash war … I know that even a successful war against Iraq will require a U.S. occupation of undetermined length, at undetermined cost, with undetermined consequences. I know that an invasion of Iraq without a clear rationale and without strong international support will only fan the flames of the Middle East, and encourage the worst, rather than best, impulses of the Arab world, and strengthen the recruitment arm of al-Qaeda. I am not opposed to all wars. I’m opposed to dumb wars.




Saturday, November 3, 2007

Republican Support of OUR Troops

This Is Funny

Bill Maher's Real Time New Rules:

Republican Ethics

Pay attention to the Nancy Nord/Consumer Product Safety Commission story.

We have poison toothpaste, lead in children's toys, and God-Knows-How-Many hazardous or deadly products coming from Communist China. And, what is the U.S. Government doing? Nancy Nord wants to cut the budget of the CPSC.

Oh, and BTW, Nancy Nord is ethically challenged. A duck is a duck and her Free Travel/Vacations are a BRIBE.


46 to 44 in the 44th


I would challenge any sporting event (READ Soccer) in all of the world to match the respectful closing game ceremony held after today's Navy v. Notre Dame football game. The stands were not clearing. School anthems were sung. Hands were held. Respect.

After 3 Overtimes, Navy ended a 43 year losing streak against Notre Dame with the score: Navy 46 -- Notre Dame 44

I didn't see all of the game. I watched the overtime play and the game-final sports broadcast. College football and Fall weather go well together...

I AM in Paradise.
.

People in Need


Photograph by Jorge Gonzales / Notimex

Filtered News


I watched Bill Moyers on PBS last night and was amazed/disturbed that the media giants had failed to report the anti-war marches that took place last weekend. Several major U.S. cities were host to huge protests. No one told me about them.

What the Hell?

Bill Moyers also reported on the newest FCC moves to further erode fairness and competition. By mid-December Federal rules may be changed to allow the big 6 media conglomerates to continue to purchase/create media monopolies in most major markets. This battle was fought and won 3 years ago. Once again, a Bushie wants to please the big corporations at the expense of the people and we need to fight it, again.

Will the Democrats make a fuss?

I am reminded of the consternation that both Bill and I felt in the Spring of 2002. We were in London, England over the Easter Holidays and came upon a huge street protest. The march featured signs saying "No War for Oil", "No War in Iraq", and various anti-Bush slogans. We were perplexed and embarrassed. What war? What the Hell were they shouting about?

The drumbeats of war had yet to begin in the United States. It was September, 2002 before Americans were being "sold" on the need to go into Iraq. The international media and it seems the rest of Europe knew we were heading for war. As someone that pays attention to the news, I was angry. Angry that we in the United States were uninformed and/or misinformed by the media.

I was more skeptical about the coming war due to the Piccadilly Circus protest encounter. And, like many Americans, when General Powers and others warned us about mushroom clouds I grudgingly conceded that we should go to war. Assholes.

We are not being served well by the "mainstream" media. Read. Read. Read. Read Blogs, news sites, foreign news sites, and more. We must be vigilant. Clear Channel, Fox, and it seems even CNN and MSNBC cannot be trusted.

"Trust, but verify," said Ronald Reagan. Words to live by.

Do It Right

I respect John Dean's opinions and thought I should share this. H/T to Talking Points Memo.

A Last Thought Before the Senate Judiciary Committee Confirms Judge Mukasey

By John W. Dean

As the Senate Democrats complete another sad concession to President Bush, and confirms a nominee who refuses to declare “water-boarding” torture, allow me to offer a brief historical reminder: the Senate Judiciary Committee has conspicuously forgotten that there are direct situational and historical parallels with Judge Mukasey’s nomination to be Attorney General and that of President Richard Nixon nominating Elliot Richardson to be Attorney General during Watergate.

Nixon’s Attorney General had been removed (and was later prosecuted for lying to Congress) – a situation not unlike Alberto Gonzales’s leaving the job under such a cloud. Nixon was under deep suspicion of covering up the true facts relating to the bungled break-in at the Democratic National Committee headquarters at the Watergate, not to mention widespread rumors that he had engaged in abuses of power and corrupt campaign practices. Today, Bush is under even deeper suspicion for activities far more serious than anything Nixon engaged in for there is evidence Bush has abused the laws of war, violated treaties, and ordered (or approved) the use of torture and political renditions, which are war crimes.

Since Judge Mukasey’s situation is not unlike that facing Elliot Richardson when he was appointed Attorney General during Watergate, why should not the Senate Judiciary Committee similarly make it a quid pro quo for his confirmation that he appoint a special prosecutor to investigate war crimes? Richardson was only confirmed when he agreed to appoint a special prosecutor, which, of course, he did. And when Nixon fired that prosecutor, Archibald Cox, it lead to his impeachment.

Before the Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee completely cave-in to Bush, at minimum they should demand that Judge Mukasey appoint a special prosecutor to investigate if war crimes have been committed. If Mukasey refuses he should be rejected. This, indeed, should be a pre-condition to anyone filling the post of Attorney General under Bush.

If the Democrats in the Senate refuse to demand any such requirement, it will be act that should send chills down the spine of every thinking American.


Love Your Neighbor


Christian Charity Raising Money To Feed Non-Gay Famine Victims

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Be Afraid, Very Afraid


The Shrub was on the TV today dissing MoveOn.org and CodePink. He went out of his way to recognize these organizations. In the typical Republican manner, we may therefore interpret that these folks hate the troops, are enabling the terrorists, and would let Crawford, Texas disappear in an atomic inferno just because they are too liberal, too effete, and too wimpy to allow Jack to TORTURE that alleged evil-doer.

I support MoveOn.

I knew little about CodePink until today. Thanks, King G, you just learn me somethin'.

Read for yourselves.

Bored?

ENJOY!! (H/T to Andrew Sullivan's The Daily Dish)


http://view.break.com/392072 - Watch more free videos

My Traveling Pants


Twenty years ago in an enthusiastic attempt to complete a colorful and comfortable wardrobe I purchased 4 pairs of Levi jeans from a Spiegle clothing catalog. Those Levi's, ones still MADE in the USA, were carefully tucked away in a drawer for future casual wear. The powder blue and white pair wouldn't be trotted out until Spring.

Unfortunately, the 36" X 32" pants never made it back onto my growing thighs and waist. They remained in a bottom drawer for a very long time. About 3 years ago, I decided to finally pass them on to the Goodwill or St. Vincent DePaul Thrift Store. Memo (Billy) intervened. He kept 3 pairs of the pants. Only the powder blue and white Levi's 505's made it to Mexico with us.

My "traveling pants" now fit. My 40" X 32" denim Levi's (and various LARGE walking shorts) have been folded and placed in the bottom of the guest room's wardrobe. I NEVER want to have to wear any of them again.

Healthy and Happy? You bet my narrow ass I am!!!!

Bragging? Yeah, maybe. I am also acknowledging that my outer appearance is important to me regardless of any protests to the contrary. I look better. I feel better.

And, to the chagrin of Bill, I am wearing Large dress and casual shirts, again. Though I brought very few of my clothes with us, my wardrobe has nearly doubled when I now may lay claim to Billy's. Sweet.

Don't try this at home! I attribute my weight loss to my severe depression following the deaths in my family, my bipolar disorder medications, and the nasty bug that welcomed me to central Mexico. It is what it is and I am okay with it....

At the end of my first 26 years, I was a sickly lean 165 pound, 32" X 32" jean wearing joven. The middle 26 years are over. The next 26 years?

The adventure continues.

You Are Not Alone


Every now and then I read a blog entry from one of my Bipolar Planet friends and feel a modicum of despair. It is painful to read and understand the hopelessness and helplessness conveyed in a few short sentences or lines of poetry. My own compassionate spirit will ache and only prayers for hope and peace can be offered.

How do I share my knowledge of God's love with folks that are convinced that His judgment and "punishment" are already upon them? Why are so many willing to accept that God would give them pain and blessings?

We are taught that God is unchanging. Okay, but do we not change our perceptions of God as we mature and grow? Are we not the only one's in His creation that must struggle to know HIM?

Many Christianists and sincere believers would reject my God as I know Him. He loves me as a son. He gives me unconditional love and expects that I love others without reservations. His blessing and gifts are not given to me alone, but for the edification of His Church -- His Creation -- His Children -- my Earthly Family.

God asks me to become more than my mind can imagine.

And, God asks me to INVITE others to Christ. This invitation is just that. We are not compelled to join and ally ourselves with His Church. The call from God must not be delivered or perceived as a threat or ultimatum. We have a choice.

I choose to worship a patient and loving Being whose Son came to Earth, to mankind, and taught that we must love God and our neighbors as ourselves. I could make a long list of what Christ DID NOT teach -- and all those alleged family focused POLITICAL "christian" groups with all of their "learned" pastors that promote hate, intolerance, and ignorance of the true love of Christ may... someday... repent and acknowledge their false teachings...

God loves me. God blesses me. And, all of these gifts are not given "in spite of" who I am, but because of who I am. I am a child of God.

Justice?


Those Christian pretenders from the Westboro Baptist Church, led by "Reverend" Fred Phelps, have to answer to the higher-power of the American Judicial System. They took their hate-filled protests to the funeral of an American hero and the soldier's family sued. And, won.

"The jury first awarded $2.9 million in compensatory damages. It returned later in the afternoon with its decision to award $6 million in punitive damages for invasion of privacy and $2 million for causing emotional distress.

U.S. District Judge Richard Bennett noted the size of the award for compensating damages “far exceeds the net worth of the defendants,” according to financial statements filed with the court."

You may read more here and/or here.

What more can I say? Those insane jerks deserve some "Hell on Earth" and their own special place in Hell.....