Archive for November, 2020

It’s Magical
11 28th, 2020

Turkeyed out yet on this Saturday morning? All of our Cincinnati gang managed to get together – LIVE and IN PERSON no less; pretty wonderful. Plus we Zoomed with Kirstin. Wednesday was an all-day heavy rain-slosh. So, merely some ‘evil’ boding cloud cover was welcome on Thanksgiving Day; we even enjoyed desert outdoors on the deck (was too late in the eve for coffee).

“I want so little: another leather bound
Book, a gimlet with a lavender gin, bread
So good when I taste it I can tell you
How it’s made. I’d like us to rethink
What it is to be a nation. I’m in a mood about America
Today.”
~ Jericho Brown, The Tradition

Illusions – We’ve all seen them. Secretly we’ve probably had a sliver of that feeling of discovery when found. I remember the first time that I ‘saw’ the Arrow embedded in the FedEx logo on one of their trucks. Now it’s almost the first thing I see whenever I spot the FedEx name.

Our new walking trail has a 300’ long mural painted on a Duke Energy building. Since its completion late summer I must have walked by it at least twenty times. This week I did a double take. I spotted the embedded image; the illusion became plain to see.

Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra – virtually – was one I attended live streaming last Sunday. Louis Langrée was the conductor and the CSO presented Schubert’s Unfinished Symphony – mesmerizing.

Love percussion? Listen to Julia Perry’s Homunculus C.F. (Perry b-1924 in Kentucky and lived mostly in Ohio) and you won’t be disappointed.

Soloist Anthony McGill introduced his You Have the Right to Remain Silent. Then with the opening notes of America the Beautiful, playing on the Contrabass Saxophone alongside the electronic cadence of a Kurtzweil, the music gave his insights into the happenings of this past summer – stunningly done. Music is Magic!

The YouTube viewing of the concert is on-line till December 12. Assuming a cold rainy afternoon, it’s worthwhile to ease back and  listen to Langrée’s  introduction and the concert.

Virtual (non) learning – While watching one of our local children choirs on TV, Marcia and I were talking about these tyrannical, obscene, and nonsensical lockdowns and what these have wrought; the damage this has done to your children and our grandchildren. Our kids have totally lost a year’s worth of learning; and almost impossible to recover. The Science says that they should be in school. The Science says they should be socializing. The Science says that their lost year will find recovery near impossible. The Science says that an array of mental issues will follow.

In 1773 the Sons of Liberty revolted in Boston with what’s now known as The Boston Tea Party (Revolt). Enough is enough was their mantra. What’s ours as our petty little dictator bureaucrats, potentates, and Governors keep heaping on with edict after edict. When are we going to stiffen our spines and revolt? Listen to this YouTube from less than two years ago and ask why in the H*ll this level of pride, spirit, excitement, exuberance and happiness shouldn’t part of our kid’s lives today. Deep down you know it should be; and remember that the ‘Rona’ has nothing to do with it.

Are we living merely for Life
Or is our life for making the most of our Living

Truly Magical – Truly a Master Magician – I fess up, doing a compilation it was The Federalist where I picked these ‘bits’. Want detail normally found in footnotes? Click here on The Federalist for the whole piece and all their well-researched entities.
In a nutshell, these are some amazing numbers:
Of the 19 Counties which have predicted the president perfectly over the past 40 years, Trump won 18 of them by an average of 16 points. Biden won one by 3 points.
Of the top 58 bellweathers since 2000, Trump won 51 by an average of 15 points, Biden won 7 by an average of 4 points.

Seeing what’s been presented as the final outcome for the election I can only say; the man is truly ‘magical’.

Fini – Monday morning Marcia and I will be heading for somewhere nowhere, deep in a ‘hollow’ in West Virginia (no Rocky-Top for us). It’s being touted to me as an opportunity to; “get outa Dodge”. As an assist, George & Sandy sent us this single use, self-contained, charcoal grill. Marcia is packing a pair of steaks. Thanks guys.

On the positive side, Deaths per Day for 2020 is backing lower to where it’s now almost the same as the average for 2014 – 2019. On the other side, Deaths due to Alzheimer’s Dementia related causes in America are 20,000 more than past averages. Wonder why?

On a walk, I spotted this a town over. To pour 4 new steps leading to a porch, bring in a truck almost larger than the house itself. Nice going guys.

Thanksgiving morning on our nearby walkway I happened on these lovely people sharing the spirit of Thanksgiving. Thanks ladies.

Otto von Bismarck can be quoted with this gem; “what we learn from History is that no one learns from History.” I’m thinking of his wisdom as it looks like Kerry will be resurrected in a new administration. Don’t remember him? Kerry was a principal character in the Iran nuclear deal that was signed in 2013 when they were given $150 billion, not to mention $1.8 billion in cash; “Iran’s hostilities substantially increased” after this foolishness. Aside from a legacy of lies he’s also a clown.

Stay sane! We will, especially with a week of no internet. A post next Saturday is a bit ‘iffy’.

Make it great week, keep the peace, be happy, stay safe, and be healthy! And pay no attention to the picture above — that’s important.

Dirk


Celebrate! Thanksgiving
11 21st, 2020

It’s Saturday morning, warmish & rainy in these parts. Yesterday I stood in line at Costco for a Black Friday buy. While there I tanked up at $1.569 per gallon. Drop it any further and they’ll pay in free fuel for me to shop there. Possibly I might prefer a payout in free coffee.

“If the freedom of speech is taken away, then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter” ~ George Washington, 1783

“The First Amendment doesn’t exist to protect comfortable speech. It exists to protect uncomfortable speech.” ~ Matt Gaetz, lawyer & U.S. representative

Then, remember that the First Amendment isn’t only just a protection of personal and political freedoms, but it also protects Capitalism; the freedom to discover, build, manufacture, and market. Maybe the Congressional young’uns in ‘The Squad’ should learn that.

This week I was in a two-hour class (more on that in a bit), but was kept so busy with note-taking that I emptied my legal pad. With a 2CV it’s a never mind, “I’m covered.”

But first, here is your morning time-check. Of special interest to those who are familiar with the nearby town of Batavia. More frighteningly is the mention of Charleston, West Virginia; Marcia and my destination area in a little over a week. For now, just set your clock:

Trash Twitter, Fire Facebook, Gone Google! – was the title of my EmpowerU class mid-week. Two hours on Zoom. Fourteen speakers including 4 U.S. Representatives, a Judge, a TV Anchor, a Woman of the Year for Veteran Affairs, and a couple of professors, and others. All came together to discuss the aftermath of the Senate Hearing with the heads of the aforementioned Social Network companies.

Originally people jumped on board with these companies because all of this connectivity was ostensibly, FREE! Now we’re beginning to come to grips with the fact that, literally, keystroke by keystroke, they own everything about us. Now it’s gone even further as these companies silence and control ‘thought’ that’s not compatible with theirs; without any real pushback. I’ve had a couple of instances where, although perfectly accurate, my post had a “Fact Check” placed on it; nothing further, no debate, no discussion, just done by some faceless person or algorithm. It’s gotten so ridiculous that even communications by our President were pulled.

In my case, I am already in the process of porting away from Twitter (if interested two alternatives are MeWe and Parler). Facebook, is a bit more difficult, but I’m working on it and use it hardly at all; also, it owns Instagram. Google has its tentacles in almost everything. It’s a slow switch; my search engine is already DuckDuckGo and no longer Google.

Our City ‘Clowncil’ – consists of nine members. Early summer one member was arrested for conducting a ‘Pay-to-Play’ scheme and she’ll be sentenced this coming Tuesday. Two weeks ago, the FBI nabbed another one (his home is 1 ½ blocks from our place – now up for sale). Thursday a third was picked up by the FBI (it was widely assumed he’s be the next mayor). Now, rumor has it that the ‘shoe’ might drop again. The way it’s going we’ll be the first city in the nation with a city council having a quorum in Sing Sing. We should be very proud.

Blue Wave – Really didn’t materialize. Not getting into it, I just wanted to show you a photo of two new members of the 117th Congress; the youngest GOP woman and the youngest GOP man. There is a future.

Masks – like most of you I live in a state headed up by a Governor who acts as a unilateral tyrant. This is not a Dem vs. Rep thing, ours, DeWine is Republican, and as bad as a Mayor de Blasio, Governor Newsom or a Whitmer, and others with their ‘do as I say and not as I do’ edicts.

Their nonsensical fiats on how to celebrate Thanksgiving or a funeral service are bad enough. And, luckily the courts have gotten involved. However, what is even worse is what these “little Kings’ have done to our school kids by moving them to ‘on-line learning’.

In New York a study showed that testing over 140,000 students the case rate among children was 8 per 100,000, and among staff 12 per 100,000, still lower than the community rate of 13.

The Dutch government conducted a large study of 44,000 teachers after schools were reopened last May. They found those teachers had a cumulative infection rate of just 0.7%, much lower “than the total of 2.0% of the over 940,000 adults tested in the test lanes in the same period.”
When will these clowns follow “the Science?”

There are others who have it right. For example South Dakota’s Governor Kristi Noem who on the subject of masks said; “here in South Dakota we’re focusing on solutions that DO good, not on responses that FEEL good”.

Fini – Sadly, on one of my afternoon walks I spotted this scene curbside. It appears that ‘Billy-Bass’ from our lake up north missed us this summer and tied to visit us. He didn’t make it. Damn ‘Rona’.

On November 21, 1980, 350 million people tuned in to television’s popular primetime drama “Dallas” to find out who shot J.R. Ewing. I remember that I skipped it; on purpose. I was a cantankerous contrarian even way back then.

For my ‘vinylphobe’ brother; on this day way back in 1877 Thomas Edison announced his invention of the phonograph, a method to record and play back sound. As an aside, it was an invention he stumbled on.

And, aren’t we all glad that the phonograph was invented so that we can still enjoy a glorious voice? For, this day in 1934, a very young gal by the name of Ella Fitzgerald stood on stage at the Harlem’s Apollo Theater on Amateur night. A scary proposition, especially since her name was drawn, per chance, out of a hat. She won!

Just yesterday I wanted to be out for some warm evening air. Then I panicked that should I misread my watch and not get back inside by 9:59PM before the 10:00PM curfew I’d catch ‘the bug’. So I stayed inside where I’d be SAFE.

The attorney who reached a multimillion dollar multimillion-dollar defamation lawsuit settlement with CNN for the Covington Catholic student Nick Sandmann puts today’s happenings into perspective:

“Life on Earth is 1 grain of sand. Eternity is every grain of sand above and below the water of every ocean of the world
Focus on the long term.”
~ Lin Wood

Last. Here is what I stood in line for yesterday at Costco. Not included in the photo are the ‘impulse’ purchases Marcia waits for with trepidation.

Make it great week, keep the peace, stay safe, and be healthy!

Dirk


It’s Saturday morning and I guess I know why you’re here. So, three — two — one — and Go; we’re underway. Whoops, first let me dive into the kitchen for my coffee.

Before I forget, did you remember that yesterday was Happy friggatriskaidekaphobia day? Should you panic on those days, little worry, the next one won’t be till Friday, August 13, 2021. Like suspense? The master of suspense, Alfred Hitchcock, was born on a Friday the 13 (August 1899).

Something new. A new (test) feature, the best Meme of the week:

“The survival of our democratic republic depends on Americans’ belief that their vote counts and their continued faith in the fairness and security of our electoral process.” ~ Hans A. von Spakovsky is a Senior Legal Fellow at The Heritage Foundation’s Center for Legal and Judicial Studies, where he manages the Election Law Reform Initiative.

“We have heard an awful lot about systematic and systemic injustice! But I don’t think anyone here can think of anything more systematically unjust than a stole election in a democracy.” ~ Michael Gableman, former justice, Wisconsin Supreme Court

Sadly, many of the 72,000,000+ of us who voted for our President feel, like sand in hand, the security of our electoral process is slipping through our fingers; I included.

This, in part, caused me to participate in a lecture on President Ulysses S. Grant earlier in the week. Also in part since his birth home is a short half hour drive along the Ohio River banks away. However it was also for the discovery of the man himself. Aside from his innovative battle-field strategies, what I really sought was further insight into Grant’s character, along with his treatment of African-Americans, American-Indians and Jews. He stood up for their rights, despite widespread opposition from the south and the American public. These minorities’ determination, coupled with his support, unleashed opportunities they never experienced before. Foremost of the black voices was Frederick Douglass, who became a member of his inner circle along with the Native American (Seneca), Ely S. Parker (DO-NE-HO-CEH-WEH). Parker was commissioned a lieutenant colonel during the Civil War, when he served as adjutant and secretary to Grant.

Grant saw the good in almost everyone and took them at their word. This became a hallmark of his Presidency as well difficulties when that trust was abused. Grant lived the last 24 years of his adult life believing all people should be treated with respect and dignity. At the time it was said that it was Lincoln who freed the slave and it was Grant who made them citizens. It wasn’t long after these two left the scene that Reconstruction as a force faded and the Democrats put ‘Jim Crow’ laws into place in the former Slave States. Still, he did manage to set up the Department of Justice and made equal education for all a standard.

Early in 20th century, Grant’s reputation was damaged by what was known as the Dunning School and quickly his Presidency’s place sunk near the bottom. More recently it’s been moved into a top tier. It was Walt Whitman’s famous assessment that includes the line, “What a man he is!

It’s amazing how distant history brings clarity and form to a person and a Presidency. I firmly believe that that same historical perspective will heap honor and praise on our current President.

Keeping busy – The absolute joke what most of the news and media have become, for a news junkie like me, it caused an I NEED ESCAPE moment. That’s why I watched a complete concert by the UKs, Florence Welch who fronts for the Florence and the Machine band, and was glad I did. That was exactly what the ‘doctor’ ordered. Great music.

Second it was the start of the Vendée Globe around the world race. Nonstop, solo with no assist, almost 25,000 miles and taking between 8 and 10 weeks, it’s a massive undertaking sailed every 4 years. Luckily, with on-board technologies it’s possible to keep up with the boats sending daily video clips. Two days in they encountered 40-45 knot winds and 5-meter waves; all stunning to see.

   

It was with a bit more ‘meat’ that I listened to an interview on The Rubin Report with Thomas Sowell. Aged ninety, Sowell is ‘sharp as a tack’ and much honored as an economist and social theorist who is currently a senior fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution. Dave Rubin is a wonderful interviewer much along the style of an earlier Dick Cavett, Charlie Rose, or a Phil Donahue. I captured this short one minute piece of the one-hour in-depth exchange between the two – Enjoy!

And, it’s been a beautiful autumn. Even this week while on my walks there is still a lot of color to relish. All to help keep the mind clear.

Blink and it’s been a 100 years –

Warp Speed – Did you hear the President give his update on the progress of a vaccine yesterday afternoon? Light is visible in the tunnel even as many ‘leaders’ and ‘experts’ still treat us like children with crazy lockdown schemes. Stop eating at 10:00PM because the restaurant must close. No more than a handful for Thanksgiving, or better; no Thanksgiving, and NO singing. Where is it that these little tyrants advocate for self-responsibility? How come each report lists an array of horrible sounding ‘Rona’ case numbers, but we don’t hear any meaningful ones, i.e.; numbers listing recoveries, deaths caused by co-morbidity, etc.

“Something extremely bogus is going on. Was tested for covid four times today. Two tests came back negative, two came back positive. Same machine, same test, same nurse. Rapid antigen test from BD.” ~ Elon Musk – November 13, 2020

Meanwhile Speaker Pelosi is hosting a large dinner for new House Members.

Thank you Mr. President for the massive push you organized to get this business behind us. I am so ready for life to resume as normal.

Fini – Shopping this week it became clear that as a tall person I cannot offer to reach something on a high shelf for a stranger, yet if they ask me I should oblige. Apparently, this is the law of the tall ones.

Yesterday Marcia handed me the mail while giggling. The reason for her merriment was this advert. It took away all the surprise!

With the difficulty eating out these days we are beginning to establish meal categories. This past week it was foreign sounding foods.

On my walks seeing something truly ‘Hot’ is still a thrill. This Z-car parked by Xavier University was such a moment.

If you think Joe Biden got 8 million more votes than Barack Obama, pull my finger and I’ll fart Bohemian Rhapsody in E minor.

On that previous ‘note’ (pun intended), its Mark Levin who is quoted saying; “it’s amazing how 100% of the dead voters vote Democrat”.

Finally, we might soon have a new China policy;

Make it great week, keep the peace, stay safe, and be healthy!

Dirk


It’s Saturday morning and I hope that it finds you well. Here, I am the only one awake, hardly a soul to be found outside, coffee was just poured, and I took my first bite of a ripe banana. A good start to the day my fellow insomniacs.

What is it about this first full week of November over the years?

The year was 1605 and based on accounts by Sir Robert Cecil there was a Catholic conspiracy in 1605 to blow up the House of Lords on 5 November. A letter delivered to a Lord Monteagle days earlier allowed the plot to be ‘foiled’ at midnight on 4 November. The plot’s leader, Guy Fawkes and his 13 co-conspirators were rounded up and life went on as usual – except for Guy and his buddies [they were sentenced and met their demise] and for the annual (mandated) celebrations; now as Guy Fawkes Day.

The year was 1860 and the South had watched in horror as an unlikely candidate, a ‘rube’ from the back-country, grew in stature. He gave no serious speeches after his nomination, but he did not need to, as the Buchanan administration began to collapse under the weight of its incompetence and greed. By then the most toxic campaign in American history delivered Abraham Lincoln. The Press wrote bitterly against the candidate. Lincoln had to survive his election and a difficult transition, severely resisted by an entrenched political establishment that had no intention of giving up power. On November 6, Lincoln was elected, the first President from the new Republican Party.

The year is 2020 and on Thursday November 5 Boris Johnson, Britain’s Prime Minister and three others imposed a Second National Lockdown to deal with the Coronavirus. This move is one that will affect everyone in Britain and extend the economic war waged against the people. Opposition claims that little transparency and the numbers didn’t warrant such a lockdown, especially when the first one only triggered a sharp rise in deaths.

November 5, 2020 and the morning showed a complete reversal of President Trump’s re-election fortunes. In fact, by the end of the day a (almost 100% negative) Press was clambering for Trump to concede. As noted over the previous 4-years, Trump does not quit easily and will ‘jab’ and ‘punch’ till the bitter end. By November 6 word of illegalities in Ballot handling; especially in Detroit and a chronically corrupt Philadelphia surfaced.

Then, a County in Michigan reported that a flaw in their software had 6,000 Ballots to ‘flip’ from Trump to Biden – a small breath of air. Then it was reported that 47 other Counties used the same software program and it was also being used in other states – more oxygen. Then Georgia ordered a complete recount – another breath. Late in the day Supreme Court Justice Alito ordered that Philadelphia separate its late Ballots from those entered by the end of Election Day – some more oxygen to the campaign. It ain’t over yet; remember it took months for Al Franken Minnesota Senate seat to be resolved. His opponent threw in the towel; but that was a different time.

What is it with the first week of November? If you stopped drinking this past week, you couldn’t have done so at a worse time.

“‘Remember Remember the 5th of November…” ~ first line of John Milton’s poem In Quintum Novembris [On the Fifth of November].

Referring to the celebration of Guy Fawkes Day

“I am old enough to remember when votes were counted on Election Day” ~ Benny Johnson

“Florida is double the size of Michigan, but had its results almost immediately. What is the reason?” ~ Caleb Hull

Sports – You should know that by now (for a variety of reasons) I have pretty well given up on Professional Sports. But, even under the ‘R’ona’ virus restrictions there is an escape, possibly buried in the lesser tiered Sports one can find delight. Enjoy!

Listening? Focus on the announcer. There was way too much hilarity going on around that lonely guy sitting with a mike on a bridge table by the edge of the bleachers.

An Overpass Apart – on yesterday’s walk I came across two sights. The sidewalk approached a highway overpass. On one side I looked into a homeless encampment – no tent, just right into the guy’s bedroom. On the sidewalk he had a display of ‘bits’ and ‘pieces’ he’d put up for sale and display.

On the other side of the same overpass is a Harley Davidson dealership. They were prepping for a fun evening. A band was doing their sound-check, riders were beginning to arrive, and the Food Truck was nearly ready to serve.

Two scenes, just a mere 100 feet apart from each other; but worlds apart.

Walking – A treasure spotted. Also on yesterday’s walk, while nearing home this gorgeous little Buick Skylark came up to the light. The owner was very proud and I gave him a ‘Thumbs-Up’, then, while traffic held up, I reached in and we gave each other a High-Five. Even under all of our current virus edicts, LIVING LIFE is more important to me than merely living.

Office Scenes – I’ve been pretty open sharing scenes from the corner of Chaos & Mayhem. But actually, I’ve done you a disservice. All the scenes I’ve shown are from the front of the Condo or the side balcony. This week I’m sharing occurrences spotted from the rear, from my office window (both happened this week). Two separate events, a neighbor needing Medic assistance. The other was some Fire happening – three fire trucks and a medic. How can I get any work done you ask? “I don’t have a clue”, is the answer.

Fini – The US – Canadian border is still closed. This is causing some mild panic by the Treasurer of our nearby Lake Association. Wonder why?

Now I can go back to hiding under my desk. It’s a safe place while the current mess whirs around me and AOC and her Squad has its team looking for me to place on one of their lists. Shhhh!

Have some spare time? These Fireside Chats podcasts (here linked) by Dennis Prager are always meaningful, insightful, and a learning experience. I urge you to listen to one, especially this one since it was posted November 5 – remember that date?

Thought I’d be the first to introduce the Biden’s new campaign Logo:

Make it great week, keep the peace, stay safe, and be healthy!

Dirk