Friday, October 31, 2008


If you thought that the melamine crisis in the US ended with dog food, you are wrong. It is in any food or food ingredient imported from China. Though experts say that there is not enough melamine in foods to hurt an adult, what about an old dog. We thought that the cheap canned food that we bought Teddy as a supplementary treat was OK, but we have discovered that she has only 25% kidney function left. We will have to have her put to sleep before we head to Texas, as we cannot leave her to die with the pet sitter. Eat no processed food. I don't think any of is safe.
Though China has vowed to boost inspections for melamine contamination, it will be difficult to monitor the countless small, illegally operating manufacturers found across the country, other experts said.

"It could take five or even 10 years" before some companies stop adding the chemical to food products, said Yan, of the U.S. Grains Council.


I planned for Halloween and no one came. Not a single Trick or Treater came to the door. There are a few kids on the street. I don't know why no one came. William will have to eat the raisins. Leah will recognize the crayons. I thought I might get rid of the rest of those Halloween crayons. So Sad.

Winners and Losers

Judy Muller explores the day after the election.

Make History

The Last Voter

The last voter pores over his ballot trying to figure out why all the propositions are not in numerical order. I put his ballot in the mailbox in SPD, so if all goes well it should reach the election office by Nov. 4th.
He did not know I was taking the pic, as I was laying out the pills and vitamins at the counter and had turned off the flash. I want this election to be over.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Last of the White Concords

The last of a meager crop this year. They look bad, but they are oh so sweet. Used to be Jasmine's favorite.

Best New McCain Slogan

Leave it to a man who takes Metamucil every day to get America going again.

Funny Last Appeals

Closing Appeals

Dear America,


Mine mine mine.

Me Me Me Me Me Me Me!

Mine mine mine mine mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine!

In conclusion: Fear fear fear fear. Very scary fear!


The Republican Party

P.S. If you liked Joseph McCarthy, you'll love us!


Dear America,


Us. We. Together. Americans. United States.

Hope compassion equality inclusiveness competence.

Brains common sense community respect hard work accountability.

Action change responsibility. More viewpoints, smarter solutions.

In conclusion: Yes we can.


The Democratic Party.

P.S. Vote.

Problems in Collin County, Texas

__At one polling station in Collin County, election workers demanded photo IDs from every voter.

__ At another Collin County station, voters whose names were not listed in the state's new electronic voter database_ even some with registration cards — were turned away and told to come back later.

West Virginia, Tennessee and Texas use iVotronic machines made by Election Systems & Software.

ES&S voting machines have been banned in many states because of poor security and a history of vote flipping. Complaints are currently coming out of Palo Pinto county west of Dallas that votes are being flipped from Democratic party to Republican.

More about voting problems.

Sign Of The Times

House in Indiana courtesy of BuzzFeed.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Voting vs Voting

Republicans: Voter suppression, caging of voters, misinformation to voters, purging of voter rolls, problems with touch screen machines owned by Republican companies, challenges of voters, blocking of democratic phone lines, intimidation of voters, less voting resources in Democratic areas, increasing restrictions on types of ID required to vote heading back to Jim Crow poll tax days. Challenging voters. Poor ballot design. Potential for millions of votes lost. Enough to change an election.

Democrats: Some poorly paid registration workers fraudulently filled out voter registration forms which were required to be turned in but were flagged as incorrect forms. No people were going to show up to vote as Micky Mouse, but a huge deal is being made about this as if the Democrats were going to steal the election. What kind of a problem is voter fraud? Over a period of 4 years 80 people were convicted of voter fraud and very few of these were actually people voting fraudulently. Hardly enough to change an election.

Fear vs Fear

What is the difference between the future McCain supporters fear if Obama is elected and the future Obama supporters fear if McCain is elected?
1. First of all the fear of McCain supporters has been artificially created out of lies that have been spread by the candidates and their surrogates. Also the fear is based on their own biases.
2. The fear of Obama supporters is based in fear of more Bush, more deregulation, and more shredding of the constitution. Also the fear is based on the statements of McCain and surrogates about how they will actually run the country.

Don't Get Complacent

I worked today and will be working Saturday and Tuesday. I worry that anything can happen and that elections have been stolen before.

Jon or Cyndi: Who is the rider? Seems vaguely familiar, like I might have seen this clip before.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Yeah for Gregory Diaz

Gregory J. Diaz, County Clerk-Recorder
County of Nevada Elections Department
Vote By Mail Ballot Receipt Confirmation

Ol' Gregory confirms that my Ballot was received on 10/23/08 and ACCEPTED!

Little Birds in the Maple

Maple tree in front of the house is putting on its fall colors and some little birds are attracted to it. Too hard to see, except the one flying above.

CA 04 BBQ for Charlie Brown

Smokey BBQ cooking. But nice cheese burgers or hot dogs with all the trimmings, salad and drinks courtesy of the campaign.
Charlie visits with the voters.

Charlie takes questions and answers all to applause after a short address. I asked his campaign manager if it was like herding cats to get the candidate to the next venue. He said he has cats and herding candidates is worse.

Last Saturday Market Downtown

Some of the vendors were dressed for Halloween. Lots of good produce still even though the nights have been getting cooler.I bought beautiful red globe radishes and pearly white sweet turnips. The nice thing about farmers market vegetables is that you can eat the tops as well as the root vegetables. Also got a bag of nice small-medium pink red tomatoes.
Diamond the catfish is a feature of the fisherman's stand.Nice tree color against the blue foothill sky.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Who is John McCain?

I sent this to the local paper, but I don't think they will publish it as they are getting too much from the public lately. They did publish 2 long "other Voice" articles on Oct. 13th that were totally anti Obama. This is just the truth about McCain. Well, some opinion.

John McCain graduated fifth from the bottom at the Naval Academy, but he was given pilot training. He was the son and grandson of admirals. He was John McCain.

He lost 5 aircraft, most by stalls. His second loss was when he was flying low over Spain. He took out power lines leading to a blackout. McCain’s third loss was while flying to Philadelphia for an Army-Navy football game. Another stall, which the Navy dismissed as "unavoidable", and assigned McCain to the aircraft carrier USS Forrestal in December 1966. An ordinary sailor would not have been allowed to keep flying, but not John McCain.

McCain lost his fourth plane on board the Forrestal on July 29, 1967 when a rocket slammed into the plane next to his starting a fuel fire. McCain scrambled out of his plane climbing off over the nose. A bomb fell from his plane. Those familiar with the plane state that the bomb fell because of actions that he took either in error or panic in his hasty exit from the plane. 134 sailors were killed when the bomb exploded and the fire blazed.

McCain did not stay on deck to help. He left the surviving crew behind and went to the pilot’s ready room and watched the fire on a television monitor.

When a reporter was leaving the ship, McCain boarded a helicopter with him and flew to Saigon. McCain said he left for “some welcome R&R” in Saigon, but he left without permission from his commanding officer. He rejoined the ship a week later and asked for a transfer. An ordinary sailor would have been at least court-martialed for desertion, but not John McCain.

On Oct. 26, 1967, he was shot down and captured by the Vietnamese after ejecting from his plane.

No name, rank, and serial number for McCain. "I'll give you military information if you will take me to the hospital," McCain pleaded with his captors. McCain told them his father was an admiral. He gave up military information and made a tape for the North Vietnamese. Other POW’s referred to him as a songbird. The Vietnamese offered to release him early, but he refused knowing if he did his career would be over. An ordinary sailor would not have given in so easily, but not John McCain.

In 1973, McCain reunited with his wife, Carol, who had been permanently disabled in a car accident while he was a POW. What a shock to John McCain who left a beautiful model and returned to a short, heavy, disabled spouse. John McCain could not have been expected to stay faithful to that.

Still yearning to become an admiral, McCain pulled strings and enrolled in the National War College. At War College you take a trip abroad to see military and political leaders. He met a fellow former POW, who said he was going to the Middle East. McCain said he was going to Rio, so he could get laid. McCain was a chronic womanizer and gambler. He was a married father of three at this time.

McCain used his authority to arrange frequent flights that allowed him to carouse with subordinates and "engage in extra-marital affairs." This was a clear violation of the Uniform Code of Military Justice rules against adultery and fraternization with subordinates. An ordinary sailor would have been penalized, but not John McCain.

In 1979, while attending a military reception in Hawaii, McCain met the young wealthy Cindy Lou Hensley. McCain filed for and obtained an uncontested divorce from his wife in Florida on April 2, 1980 and promptly married Cindy on May 17, 1980. He obtained the license while still married to Carol. Ronald and Nancy Reagan and Ross Perot never forgave him for dumping Carol. But why should John McCain care, he had a young, beautiful, wealthy wife.

He resigned from the Navy in 1981, after he knew he was not making admiral, and went to work for his father-in-law in Phoenix; where he made powerful and wealthy friends in Arizona including banker Charles Keating, who was later convicted of fraud, racketeering, and conspiracy.

After McCain was elected to Congress, he made sure that all information about POW’s was hidden. He did not want the true information about his 5 ½ years to come out.

He pals around with unrepentant domestic terrorist G. Gordon Liddy. He works almost exclusively with active and former lobbyists.

McCain was a spoiled child and a spoiled young man who always thought he deserved the best and that he could do whatever he wanted. He learned no lesson from Vietnam. He now has an ambition to be president and will say or do whatever he thinks will further that goal.

This is not the story McCain tells about himself. Few politicians have so actively crafted their own myth of greatness. In McCain's version of his life, he is a prodigal son who, steeled by Vietnam, learned to put "country first." Remade by the Keating Five scandal that nearly wrecked his career, McCain re-emerged as a "reformer" and a "maverick," saying he would never do anything that would dishonor himself or his office. He is certainly not running an honorable campaign. It is his ambition to be president and he is willing to do anything to achieve that goal.

He knows he is not an ordinary person and the rules do not apply to John McCain.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Who do Terrorists Support?

Terrorists are expressing glee over the US financial crisis and are hoping for the election of John McCain.
"Al-Qaeda will have to support McCain in the coming election," said a commentary posted Monday on the extremist Web site al-Hesbah, which is closely linked to the terrorist group. It said the Arizona Republican would continue the "failing march of his predecessor," President Bush.
Per the Washington Post.


We need to get rid of lobbyists. Lobbyists have way too much influence. Stop money to politicians by lobbyists. Stop lobbyists from bundling money for politicians. Stop letting lobbyists write laws. Lawmakers can have assistants help them write laws, they do not need to have lobbyists write them.

Bold Foreign Policy

In addition to the domestic policy wants I have previously outlined, I would like to see some bold changes on the foreign policy front.
1. Make friends with Cuba. Why? Cuba now has proven oil reserves as large as our own that are more easily accessible. Offer access to up to date drilling equipment and technology in return for selling to us. Also we always need another vacation spot. Kiss off those 2-3oo anti Castro ex-Cubans in Miami. They are Republicans anyway.
2. Besides closing Gitmo and getting our troops out of Iraq, lets really reduce our troops in lots of other countries--Japan, Germany and lots of other places we don't even know about. Reducing our Imperialistic footprint is not closing ourselves off to the rest of the world, it is not trying to have dominion over the rest of the world.
3. No Missile Defense Shield in Poland and other eastern block countries. Work out more cooperative and sensible policies toward and with Russia. No poking the Bear.
4. Spend some of the money saved on clean water projects everywhere, especially in Africa. This is a cheap way to make friends.
5. Put some brain power to work on the problem that is the failed state of Somalia.
6. Put lots of brain power to work on the Palestinian problem and put real pressure on the Israelis to cooperate.

Just a few ideas for starts.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Interview with Jon

Chaos Cycling interviews Jon

Off to Delhi (CA that is)

Off to pick up the nuts (the owner's 50lb) at the farmer's. Discussed that no trees had been planted since 05 because the property was due to be sold. Since the sale just fell through we will try to replant. Too expensive to replant the whole orchard, so we will see about replanting the dead and missing and what dying trees or trees in poor condition need to be replanted. My contention is that I would only have had to pay the cost of the trees to replant in 06, 07, 08 and now 09 so that needs to be taken into consideration.
I went by the farm to take my own rough survey. To my eye and I will count on pics I took there are quite a few missing and dead or down trees. I could see some trees that looked poorly but lots look like very healthy 8-20 year old trees. Looked at the rentals also. The little house looks OK, if you don't count the dog. The big house looks poor. 3 fairly new cars parked outside--nicer than my old beater.
The big house
The little house
Dead and missing trees, but still some good trees

Monday, October 20, 2008

Financial Crisis not over yet

Since the Treasury Dept finally is directly loaning to banks and taking an ownership stake, finally making the right move, there is some softening of the crisis. Although the Ted Spread is down below three and banks appear to be making some loans, there are still a lot of foreclosures to go and a lot of worthless credit default swaps out there. Unemployment will still go up. Bad news for those looking for work.

Waiting for the ink to dry

The bunny holds down the ballot as I wait for it to dry thoroughly. I am finally getting around to filling out my PAV (Permanent Absentee Voter) ballot. I will have to think of another cute line as I make calls to other PAV's Wednesday to encourage them to fill out their ballots for Charlie Brown. I had to go online to figure out who not to vote for as a Community College Trustee. I was leaning against one, but was not sure which of the candidates was part of the old John Dolittle cabal. About one second on line settled that for a no on Klein and Cota. Then I just voted no on everything else. In these hard economic times California has too much debt already. So no more bonds and no more inflexible budget obligations.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Reno Weekend (Fernley)

Lots of nice presents for Brian and Caley. She is due on 12/12 and counting every minute I think.

Brian and sister Shelley. Sharon and Sam were there. Tom did not make it. Lots of friends and relatives of Caley.

Driving back to Reno to stay at the Atlantis. I put $10 in slots for the weekend and wound up $10 ahead. Birthday Celebration.

We took a walk at Discovery Trail on our way back this afternoon.

One odd thing happened while we were in Fernley. Although politics never came up, we knew we were in red territory. And we have bumper stickers on our car. Obama/Biden etc. We were sitting in the living room chatting when a screaming child about 7 is hustled in. The story is that he threw rock/rocks at the back of our car. He refuses to say he is sorry and is hustled off for a time out. I did not think of it at the time, but I am sure the bumper stickers were the target. And he probably did not feel he needed to apologize when he had heard disparaging remarks about democratic candidates and those who support them. There were about 15 or more cars in their parking lot and ours was hemmed in by other cars, not on the edge. We reap what we sow. Yes?

Cyclocross Twitter

Read Twitters about Jon today He's in Delaware and got 9th yesterday and 10th today, riding with all the big USA guys. The pic is from Saturday.

Friday, October 17, 2008

So Cute!

The Boybama Boy Band

This is just insanely cute, especially the guy in the crazy blonde wig. This is for you Valerie and Cyndi and all the rest of the women in battleground states.

What is that $8 million paying for? And whose is it?

Remember I wrote about Wachovia loaning the NRCC $8 million. Now I read that the RNC and the McCain campaign in a stunning gem of coordination have paid $8 million to the same robocall company, FLS-Connect, that smeared McCain in 2000 and that McCain spoke out against, to make robocalls smearing Obama in Ohio, Colorado, New Mexico, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Missouri, North Carolina, Florida, Texas, West Virginia, Maine, New Hampshire, Indiana, Delaware, Illinois, Georgia, Minnesota, and even Canada. I think that the amount loaned to NRCC and the amount spent by RNC/McCain is suspiciously similar.
Children in Colorado and Texas can comment, if they get any nasty robocalls.

Bring in the Dutch

The Dutch arrived at a conference in New Orleans to discuss a new/old concept of how to live with water.

Some Guard Dog

Ted is getting way too old to be thought of as any kind of guard dog. William had to run some errands and the logging truck had not come. He said don't worry you will know when the truck comes. Ted will start barking.
So I am in the living room and I feel a thud and then hear a motor roaring. I look out the window and there is the truck. I go to the back door and Ted is still asleep in her bed.
So I go over to talk to the logger. Ted wakes up and staggers over to the edge of the deck. She sees me talking to a stranger and starts barking and going crazy, hopping around.
It is official. The guard dog is deaf and senile.
The Logging Truck

Yeah, I am Pro-America

Since I live in a small town (pop. 3,000), I am Pro-America per Sarah Palin. I wonder where she draws the population line.

English Dam

Bob Crabb cartoon from the Grass Valley Union
So William says "you want to know what happened at the English Dam." I reply, "no, don't be a spoiler." I have enjoyed following the story of the humbug, from the old long-gone town of Humbug, now the place of, North Bloomfield.

Say It Ain't So Joe

Republicans fear the terror of an election that produces a Democratic President with larger Democratic majorities in both houses of Congress. Think of all the horrors that could ensue:

Voters will be registered. Workers organized. Banks regulated. Health care provided for all. Government investment will drive a green revolution that generates millions of jobs. The wealthy will pay more in taxes. Guantanamo will be shut down; torture will end. Net neutrality will be mandated. Citizens may even be able to sue corporations that negligently do them harm. Tax benefits for moving jobs out of the US will end. The war in Iraq will end. The FDA, USDA, Justice and Interior will actually be funded to do their jobs for the public.

The horror of it all. Can the Republic survive?

But we need to go further if given the chance. Cut the military budget. End the privatization of the military and national security functions with cost plus contracts. Clamp down on the CIA and its secret budget. Stop the military arms brokers. Forge a national strategy for the global economy. Reverse the Commodity Futures Modernization Act. Repeal the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Financial Services Modernization Act. Make college affordable for all. Provide the basics in education, from pre-school to small classes, to lifelong learning. Revive national service. Rebuild trust in government. Launch the unspeakable -- a true war on poverty. Revive the fairness doctrine.

The horror, the stark horror of it all. Can Americans -- after Iraq, Katrina, bankers run amok, gilded age inequality, Robber Baron corruption -- actually have the gall to vote the bums out? Say it ain't so, Joe the plumber, say it ain't so.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

McCain agrees with Puke Post

Who is Joe?

Joe Wurzelbacher of Holland, Ohio. Who is he really? One thing he admits to is that he is not an undecided voter. He is a McCain supporter. But is he a plumber? He is not listed as having a plumbing license in Ohio. Is he planning to buy a small business that just coincidentally would give him an income (net profit) over $250K? In this business climate?
Generally to net 250K per year, gross billing in the plumbing business would be in the 2-3 million dollar range. That is some small plumbing business to have saved up for when the average wage for plumbers is $44K.
Researchers have been unable to find him as a registered voter in Lucas County, Ohio. No listed phone number in Holland, Ohio, although the McCain campaign had his phone number and made a point of saying not that they had never talked to him, but that they had not told him that he would be part of the debate. He is on talk TV today full of Republican talking points. I think he is a fairly skillfully done plant. First they have him at an Obama event and asking Obama a question. Then he is brought up 12 times in the debate as a yederman (every man).
By the time he is exposed as a fake and a plant the 24 hour news cycle will have flown away and everyone will have forgotten about him.
Update:from Martin Eisenstadt:
Turns out that Joe Wurzelbacher from the Toledo event is a close relative of Robert Wurzelbacher of Milford, Ohio. Who’s Robert Wurzelbacher? Only Charles Keating’s son-in-law and the former senior vice president of American Continental, the parent company of the infamous Lincoln Savings and Loan. The now retired elder Wurzelbacher is also a major contributor to Republican causes giving well over $10,000 in the last few years.

Gee, and we know that Keating was and maybe still is big buds with John and Cindy. Too much of a coincidence.
Update 2: Joe was a registered member of the Natural Law party, now a registered Republican(with his name spelled wrong). In an interview states that he is against immigrants, Social Security. Was proud of living in Northern Florida in a Dixiecrat area that is famous for being anti-black. Was sorry when he found as a teen that he had been born in Ohio.
Update 3: Joe does work as a plumber but under his employer's license, AW Newel. Still a question of whether he had contact with the McCain campaign before the interaction with Obama. If the company that he works for is the one he wants to buy, it has sales listed of $100K. So he misrepresented the net profit of the company and did not understand that items bought for a company and expenses of a company are before taxes. He also has a current tax lien. But he is now a total McCain poster pony that McCain hopes to ride to victory. Joe wants McCain to come visit him at his house. As if.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Pooks would have had Puke

I am glad that Pooks had her debate party last debate. This debate (McCain's part) is making me feel like puking. I could not sit still so I made Wm come to dinner. A very nice dinner I had started early this afternoon with some boneless short ribs marked down to about $2. Unfortunately we have TV's in all rooms, so I could still hear John McCain in my ear over my left shoulder. I am on my third glass of wine (box) and that and the fact that every other bit of talk is by Obama is keeping me sane. McCain is such a f**k. He does not listen to anything that Obama says. McCain says health care coverage is $5,800, but I remember Robbin saying that she pays $1,000 per month.
Remember there is only one race, the human race.
Do you notice that Obama has a flag pin and McCain has no flag pin?
Obama nice closing.

Finishing the Trees

After hours of repair on the crane, they are finally taking down the rest of the last tree. You can see Anthony in the top of the tree.

Go Matt

This live chat is so funny as Matt Taibbi of Rolling Stone and and Byron York of the National Review butt heads on the causes of the financial crisis.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

The Auburn Crane is Here

Very exciting watching the faller climb up the tree, set the chain, measure and cut off a section of the tree, then seeing the section of the tree whirl away in the air. William got up on the roof to watch. The animals took it in stride and didn't seem much bothered. But they did stay on the porch.

I would take mine out

So McCain would let me take up to 50K per year out of my IRA and have it taxed at only 10%. Then he says we don't want money to leave the market. Who is he kidding? If this rule were in effect, I would take my money out, so I would pay less taxes on it. You have to pay the taxes sometime and better to pay less now than more later. He has totally the wrong idea, if he wants people to leave their money alone. But he always said economics was not his strength.
I think that they do not understand that there are a whole bunch of people who are old enough to take all of their money out of their IRA's, if they wanted, but don't because of the taxes they would pay all at once.

Starring George Clooney

Andy Borowitz humorously writes that he fears Paul Krugman will get big-headed after winning the Nobel for Economics.
According to Ms. Hefstein (his new publicist), Mr. Krugman plans to spend the next few months "building his brand" and will be adapting his book, International Economics: Theory and Policy, into a feature film to star George Clooney.

Just Call Me and I'll Pick You Up

Sunday, October 12, 2008

McCain's Campaign

Jon's Weekend so far

This was the Friday race in Ohio:
In the elite men's race, Powers and Danish National Champion Joachim Parbo (CCV Leopard Cycles) put the pedal to the metal at the gun and led to the holeshot, with Barry Wicks in tow and Vitamin Cottage’s Jonathan Baker not too far off the pace. When Wicks met Powers, it was game-on and Parbo paid the price.

Powers lead increased to nearly a minute through laps 4-6. At this point, the battle was for third between Wicks and a sweaty-faced Baker. Before the barriers on lap four, Baker was rattled on a bumpy off camber uphill u-turn and Wicks blasted by to claim third. Parbo was still back and now closing on Baker. The Dane made contact and the duo worked together till the last lap, when Parbo punched the pedals of his new carbon Leopard Cycles rig just before the barriers. Baker couldn’t answer.
Jon came in 5th, a good showing.Pic is from Saturday race. Results so far only show the top 3, same as Friday.

Yard Sales are Bad

So I made about $75 the first day and it is colder today. I don't know that I will make anything today. Most of the hard core yard salers come out the first day. We covered everything up overnight, but the clothes rack fell down in the night. When it is light I am going to go out and shake off and fold up the clothes. They will all go to hospice I think. I wasn't selling many of them anyway. Very discouraging. I put the school desk, treadle sewing machine and basketball set up on craigslist. I think I'll put the wetsuit up also. Some of the books I'll take to Ames or Carol's Used Books. The rest is junk or Hospice Gift and Thrift.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Ben on a Rock

Val just sent a pic of Ben up on a rock. Looks like he climbed up.

See Anything You Like?

The sky is clear with few clouds. The breeze is very light, but it is cold today. Wm has helped, but mostly I am sitting out here. Might have sold $100. I haven't counted yet. I think I will put a few of the bigger ticket items on craigslist and see how that goes. Lots of books, clothes and garage junque for sale here. This is just the first of many yardsales as we just have to get rid of our stuff. I want the house to look uncluttered and with mostly new furniture when we move back in.
Thank goodness Hospice Gift and Thrift is just around the corner. They take anything and our rule is once it comes out of the garage, it is not going back in.

Friday, October 10, 2008

The Ant and The Grasshopper

Do you remember the fable of The Ant and The Grasshopper. The ant worked hard and saved for the winter. The grasshopper did not save and when the winter came around he had nothing to eat and starved to death. In these bad times you may think you have a secure job, but how secure is your company, if those who buy your product are cutting back. Everyone should be prepared for bad times with at least 6 months of basic expenses in savings. You cannot afford to not be saving. If you get a bonus, you ought to save it. If you get a raise, you ought to save it. It is never a good time to be a grasshopper, but now most of all. The moral of the story: It is best to prepare for the days of necessity.
Don't be like the grasshopper and indulge your every whim.

Palin guilty in Troopergate

AP NewsAlert

14 minutes ago

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Legislative panel finds Palin abused her power in firing of public safety commissioner.
I find that Governor Sarah Palin abused her power by violating Alaska Statute 39.52.11(a) of the Alaska Executive Branch Ethics Act. Alaska Statute 39.52.11(a)

William says she reminds him of Spiro Agnew.
In case you do not remember, he was a corrupt attack-dog Nixon VP who had to resign. Replaced by Ford. Who, when Nixon resigned, became the first unelected president.

Yard Sale Weekend

Preparing for the first of many yard sales. I got a lot of my clothes together and William built a rack. Books galore are in 2 bookshelves and a lot of small boxes. Miscellanea and a few bits of furniture. The treadle sewing machine and an old school desk. Hats, purses, etc. William says he has a lot more stuff to bring out of the garage. I hope so as it is stuffed with stuff and we have to be able to put what we want to keep in it during the remodel.

From the Right

From Andrew Sullivan--a usually Republican-leaning blogger:
There was always going to be a point of revolt and panic for a core group of Americans who believe that Obama simply cannot be president - because he's black or liberal or young or relatively new. This is that point. As the polls suggest a strong victory, the Hannity-Limbaugh-Steyn-O'Reilly base are going into shock and extreme rage. McCain and Palin have decided to stoke this rage, to foment it, to encourage paranoid notions that somehow Obama is a "secret" terrorist or Islamist or foreigner. These are base emotions in both sense of the word.

But they are also very very dangerous. This is a moment of maximal physical danger for the young Democratic nominee. And McCain is playing with fire. If he really wants to put country first, he will attack Obama on his policies - not on these inflammatory, personal, creepy grounds. This is getting close to the atmosphere stoked by the Israeli far right before the assassination of Rabin.

For God's sake, McCain, stop it. For once in this campaign, put your country first.

Liberals Are Afraid

I am afraid of the hatred the Republicans are stirring up. It only takes one loon who decides to act on the hatred.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Low Banking

First it is the partying by AIG and wasting of $61 billion of their $85 billion so they require some $37 billion more.
Now it is the loaning of $8 million by Wachovia to the NRCC as the bank closes branches and denies loans to everyone else and requires federal guarantees to avoid bankruptcy. I hate that Wells Fargo is going to buy this corrupt institution.

Too Too Similar

Read The Return of The Long Depression by Andrew Leonard. Too similar and too spooky.

My Voting Pattern Vindicated

Normally I vote No on all propositions on the ballot, as I consider them mostly a waste of money and just a way for special interests to take flexibility out of the budgeting process. I am vindicated, says the Sac Bee.

Our Future?

McCain telegraphs our future under a McCain-Palin regime in a speech in Pennsylvania when he stated, "this is the agenda I have set before my fellow prisoners."

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Palin and Diana

Who is really royalty?
Some genealogists connected Sarah Palin and Princess Diana as 10th cousins. Remember Diana was only a Princess by marriage. Obama, however, by virtue of being an 11th cousin of President Bush, is, through that relationship, related to most of the royalty in Europe.

McCain's Brain #4

Calling for Charlie

Worked this morning on the phone bank for Charlie Brown for Congress. Wearing my Charlie Brown t-shirt. The work was much better today. Instead of calling Republicans we were calling Decline to State voters and leaving nice short messages on the machines of those who did not answer.
I had no bad reactions from people I did talk to, even those who were going to vote for McClintock, who I just found out has been endorsed by the KKK in the recent past. Nice.

The tree cutters are going to be out tomorrow to get a head start on the felling due to start on Monday. Hard to think that we will have about 10K board feet taken out and will have to pay much and get little for these prime pine and cedar saw logs. PGE is looking to take down the three trees on the side lot near the street that we had left off our application to the city. PGE has noticed that those trees are a hazard to the road and power lines. Sorry that this includes the bent oak that was a favorite of Val's. Wm has a hard hat for me, if I want to go out and see what they are doing.

We are planning the first yard sale this weekend. I am going to put up the treadle sewing machine and the two old school desks, but at fairly high prices. So we shall see. Plus lots of other stuff. Wm says he will help.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

From Milk to the Military

Fake microchips flow from unruly bazaars in rural China to dubious kitchen-table brokers in the U.S. and into complex weapons. Senior Pentagon officials publicly play down the danger, but government documents, as well as interviews with insiders, suggest possible connections between phony parts and breakdowns.

Why are we not surprised to read that the unregulated capitalism that currently flourishes in China is not only a threat to our health but also to our national security.
Salvage operations in China take microchips out of products and then counterfeit them. So we see tons of "Texas Instruments" microchips and "Cisco Systems" routers imported from China. Hazardous fakes that can destroy our economy and our security.

Wall Street USA

This dates to 1999 so you have to substitute Bernanke for Greenspan. Otherwise it plays quite well.

Palin Should Have Known

American Standard Version: Proverbs 10:10 He who winks the eye causes trouble, And a babbling fool will be ruined.

Look Alikes

Neel Kashkari assistant to Secretary of Treasury has been named to head up bail-out.Is it a requirement in Treasury that you must try to look like your boss?

Monday, October 6, 2008

Afghanistan is Unwinnable as a War

If we continue to pursue a war in Afghanistan, we cannot win a military victory. We will be eventually driven out the same as the Russians were. The Taliban do not care about losses. They are the hordes who just keep on coming. Afghanistan will become a poor failed terrorist state eventually taken back over by the Taliban.

But if we have the courage to pursue a different course, we could win. Christopher Hitchens is saying what I have been saying for a while. He says we need to buy the opium crop from the farmers, giving them income but depriving the Taliban of income.
It can be burned or thrown away or perhaps more profitably used to manufacture the painkillers of which the United States currently suffers a shortage. (As it is, we allow Turkey to cultivate opium poppy fields for precisely this purpose.) Why not give Afghanistan the contract instead? At one stroke, we help fill its coffers and empty the main war chest of our foes while altering the "hearts-and-minds" balance that has been tipping away from us.
I think we need to go on from there and pay the farmers to plant other crops. Hitchens mentions reforestation and the replanting of vine crops. Whatever we do we need to be working with the people and building them up and considering the Taliban as more of a police action.

We don't need to send in more troops. We need a radically new strategy.

In testimony before Congress Adm. Mike Mullen of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is quoted:
as saying that suicide bombings in Afghanistan were up 27 percent in 2007 over 2006... they are up 600 percent over 2005, and that all insurgent attacks are up 400 percent over 2005."

We need to work on the corruption in the government, too. Apparently Karzai's brother is involved in the heroin trade and has stopped the seizure of some heroin.

Our current government is really incapable of thinking outside the box. So this is why
a secret US intelligence report which says the political and military situation in Afghanistan is "grim" will be withheld from the public until after the election...

The Bushies don't have a good idea so they just hide the situation.

McCain now McNasty

From Arianna:
The McCain campaign is all set to roll out its message for the last 30 days of the campaign: "We may not be good for your bank account, your mortgage, your health care, or your job security -- but none of that will matter if you are dead. John McCain: If You Want to Live."

Others are saying that the only thing that might help McCain is a national security crisis real or not real, that would sway independents.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Halloween is coming

For all those parents of grandchildren who love Halloween. Are you worried yet about chinese candy with melamine or chinese candy with lead? Most American brands of candy are made in China. So think carefully about that annual Halloween candy gorge. I think we will give out California raisins and maybe recycle some of those packs of Halloween crayons. I am not going to give children potentially poisonous candy, even if the FDA does say small amounts of melamine is OK.

Remember 1932

In 1932 although times were certainly getting harder with bank failures and unemployment rising, no one at the time was saying that they were in a depression. It is only from a historical perspective that we date the "Great Depression" from 1929 to 1939. At the time they considered what they were in just a recession. As things got worse after the election of 1932, the powerless Hoover asked FDR to help, but FDR said that he would wait until he was sworn in.

In my opinion, and I think this will be backed up historically, we have been in a recession since last December. I think this October or end of September will be called the beginning of the Depression of 2008. And things will get worse. The stock market will go down to 8,000. More banks will fail and more businesses will fail for lack of credit and lack of customers. This "Rescue Bill" will take months to implement and even then may not work.

There are very few elders around who were of working age in the Depression. They are the only ones who have real memories of that time. Who did OK and who did not?

Although our parents are gone, we remember some of what they told us of those times.

Debt free family farms that were not in the drought regions did fine. So my mom's family did OK and even sent her to college in the 30's. Bill's dad's family did not do so well because of the drought in Nebraska. His dad worked at any kind of job he could get and even rode the rails for a while. My dad joined the Marines. Bill's mom worked as a housemaid and was forced to give all her money to her parents. Everyone scrimped and saved and developed a habit of living low. It was the only way to get by.

All of us are going to need to develop some Depression ethics. Scrimp and save and live low and you will get by.

Auntie Sarah

Cynthia Boaz makes an excellent comparison between Sarah Palin and the Aunts of Margaret Atwood's book "The Handmaids Tale". Welcome to Gilead, Governor Palin.


Make-Believe Maverick in Rolling Stone
This new article gives a comprehensive well sourced life story of John McCain. Not a life to be proud of. Remember, if you have to keep telling people you are a maverick, as McCain has more that 1200 times in public speeches, you really are only trying to be branded a maverick and are not one in truth.
NYT on the Original Mavericks

Take me out to the Cal Game

UCB 24 ASU 14
The game was good. Not a Screamer. But a good win. Even in the rain showers.
The Cal Fan
and Friends
The Cal Band Marching Tubas