Thursday, December 18, 2008

THE REAL CHRISTMAS WAR

'Tis the silly season for evangelicals and their foghorn Bill O'Reilly to complain that atheists are trying to do away with Christmas and create a secular holiday. Well, wah... The fundamentalists have the luxury of this conflict without any casualties. No one is hurt if there is an atheist sign for the winter solstice at the Washington State Capitol except for the spoiled crybabies on the religious right.

Let's have a little perspective on the issue. The retail season is the weakest in two decades, 20 years, and won't get better after the holidays. Weak sales mean less demand for products which leads to more workers being laid off. Evangelicals can stuff the whining about the holy day up their manger scene. Not only is the secular realm affected by the financial downturn but the devout are in affliction. Thomas Nelson, a Bible publisher, just laid off 55 people because even Christian retail merchants cannot sell their wares. Bitching about whose symbolism goes where is like rearranging cultural deck chairs while the boat is sinking fast.

The anger over the war on Christmas, compared to the real problems that concern the world, is theatrical and immature. It is a pose of emotion, a calculated manipulation for self-glory. This arrogance does not touch the honest grief of those who lost their loved ones to the war in Afghanistan. Three Canadian soldiers: Cpl. Thomas James Hamilton, Pte. John Michael Roy Curwin,and Pte. Justin Peter Jones, recently died there in explosions. This holiday season is a time to honour what is important. Remember these brave young men no longer with families; parents, wives, and children who will be forever lonely each holiday season.

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Thursday, November 13, 2008

IT'S JUST A JUMP TO THE LEFT....









The election is a few weeks over and with the choice of President-elect Barack Obama, Governor Sarah Palin has an uncertain future. Radio Free Canada suggests that since she does not like being a community organizer and that her taste in clothes is questionable despite spending $150,000 on garments during the campaign, that she consider show business as a Frankenfurter impersonator. LET'S DO THE TIME WARP AGAIN!!!

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Monday, November 03, 2008

IN MEMORIAM

Say a prayer tonight not for an Obama win tomorrow but for the senator's maternal grandmother Madelyn Payne Dunham who died Monday of cancer. Say a prayer that her spirit is now free of a dreaded disease that wracked her body with pain. Say a prayer for a woman that helped raise her daughter's family. Say a prayer for all those unnoticed people like Madelyn Payne Dunham who worked hard day after day to put food on the table and to raise their children despite troubled and sometime financially desperate times like now. Say a prayer whether you're atheist or believer with the works of your hands to make your community a better place to live. Say a prayer and remember a strong woman who raised a good grandson and a good man in Barack Obama.
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Friday, October 31, 2008

YO, SARAH!

This is a great video that features Young Girls of America who question Sarah Palin's commitment to her own gender. Check it out. Technorati Tags:

Monday, October 27, 2008

WHY PEOPLE WHO USE GUNS ARE STUPID

An adult's responsibility is to protect their children not put them in harm's way. The father who gave his eight-year-old son an Uzi for target practice now knows that sad fact.




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Saturday, October 18, 2008

THE QUEEN VISITED GOOGLE







A big hurray for the tech-savvy monarch who visited Google's Britain division on Thursday. We love you, Ma'am. A toast to a woman who sent her first e-mail in 1976 and who launched her own RoyalChannel on YouTube.

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Monday, October 13, 2008

CHASING THE CORPSE CANDLE

The corpse candle, in Welsh mythology, is an apparition that manifests when someone is fated to die. The illumination is also known as ignis fatuus (foolish fire) or the will-o-the-wisp that leads unwary travelers to a boggy death. Wall Street traders, in the aftermath of the government bailout , are following an ignus fatuus to their destruction. There is no substantial basis for rallies on the Street because stock buyers are pursuing the same leads that took America to finacial ruin.
According to news reports, stock speculators are buying stocks in those banks and investment companies that require government bailout or corporate buyouts such as Morgan Stanley, Citigroup, and Goldman Sachs. They are not buying conservative bank stocks, banks that have been less careless with investments, like Wells Fargo whose House Mortage fund is rated 'AA'/Outlook Stable by Fitch Ratings. Stockbrokers, instead of prudence, are once again going after the risky money that they believe will pay off big but which left them (and the world) with nothing.

This crazy optimism ignores some fundamentals to the economy. I am sounding like a broken record but there is no money in the United States Treasury to pay for the bailout. Second, stockbuyers are ignoring that the retail sector is posed to take a significant dive due to the twin evils of the credit crunch and record unemployment. This will be a bleak Christmas because stores are set to have weak sales and less need for temporary workers. The unemployment levels are at record highs and will probably rise from 6.1%. Bill Gates, speaking at Harvard Business School, thinks that unemployment might rise to 9% of the American population. People are cutting back on spending by not buying goods except for those necessary to keep life together. They are purchasing what they can at discount and thrift stores. Stores, as a consequence of this fear, will be unable to continue and will lose more workers. Fewer workers will mean less purchases and a stagnant flow of money in the economy will loop back to create a nasty cycle of more lost businesses.

So what is the answer? Regardless of which political party takes the White House there will always be those who want the quick buck, damn the consequences. The most effective and thought- filled response is to invest in real goods such as manufacturing equipment, employee training, and savings. This is the correct and safest way to create wealth in a society. The paper-chasing speculation that has destroyed the world economy must stop if global financial stability is to be achieved.

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Wednesday, October 08, 2008

SORRY OBAMA...

but you may not be the first person of African-American descent to be President. Thomas Jefferson may have been the first. Or the third President of the United States may have been Jewish.

The story behind the assertion that Sen. Obama may not be, in technical terms,America's first Black president concerns the rare chromosome type that Thomas Jefferson carried. The K2 chromosome, renamed "T" is found on the African continent among people from the Middle East and East Africa. Specifically, the haplogroup for this Y chromosome is found most prominently in Oman, Somalia, and Iraq. The European strain of T haplogroup may have come from Shephardic Jews. This is perhaps why Jefferson may have been the first Jewish president. The third consideration is that there is paleoanthropological evidence that back and forth migration occurred between Africa and Eurasia millions of years ago at the Horn of Africa or/and at what is the Levantine corridor of Syria, Palestine, Lebanon and Jordan.

One can say, guardedly,sorry Senator Obama. You may have or not broken the glass ceiling for African-Americans considering that Thomas Jefferson may be of Jewish origins, or Black like you.

UPDATE: However, when one discusses race in the American elections, a discerning voter can see that Obama is not white trash like the followers of Palin and McCain. The rude actions, where Palin supporters call Obama 'a commie faggot' at GOP presidential rallies, is fascist hick behaviour. Thomas Jefferson said it best, "Bigotry is the disease of ignorance, of morbid minds; enthusiasm of the free and buoyant. Education and free discussion are the antidotes of both."

Sunday, October 05, 2008

IF THERE ARE ANGELS....

may they go with Beau Biden,the eldest son of vice-presidential hopeful Joe Biden,when he deploys to Iraq with the National
Guard.The younger Biden is Delaware's Attorney General.RadioFreeCanada gives him and his family sincere wishes for his safe return home.

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Saturday, October 04, 2008

THE ELECTION SCUM RISES

Recently,a flier has been circulated in predominantly African-American neighbourhoods of Philadelphia to warn that people with as little as a parking ticket will be arrested if they show up to vote. This notice is a fake intended to intimidate citizens and deprive them of their voting rights. One can assume that GOP operatives are behind this deception because Democrats, regardless of how people will vote, want all citizens to participate in the election.

Give the finger to this trickery. Show up to the polls and vote your conscience.

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Sunday, September 28, 2008

PLAY MONEY




The American government's $700 billion bailout of Wall Street is a fraud because there is no money to buy the debt associated with the rescue. The United States government has a debt, with the bailout, of more than $11 trillion. As I have stated before, the government is buying debt with debt like the credit default swaps that created the crisis in the first place.

Some definitions are in order. Essentially, a credit default swap is insuring the owner of a debt that the debt will be paid. If the debt is not paid or bought, then the insurer is stuck with the bad debt. Many of the banks and securities with trouble now had insured or bought credit default debt. What the United States government plans to do is to buy the companies' bad debts and assets and hold them until the toxic financial products can either be sold as debt or wait until the magic moment until the economy supposedly recovers to sell off the real assets at a better price. The American government plans to purchase this all with the non-existent money in the United States Treasury.

The bailout is down a rabbit hole but not through a looking glass in terms of sense and rational thought. The problem could have been contained with legislation that mirrored the Glass/Stegall Act which forbade banks from offering investment, commercial banking services , and insurance services in the same corporate entity. Banks that offer all three endanger citizens' money through speculation not saving. The Republican Party, led by Phil Gramm, destroyed the barriers to prudent banking. However, a Glass/Stegall provision is not a part of the current bailout scheme. Serious bank reforms that will prevent imprudent corporate investments are necessary before a true bailout of the American economy can occur.

UPDATE: In the middle of this financial scandal, the National Republican Congressional Committee has one of its own. Wachovia, a bank Wells Fargo has now bought, was in serious trouble and on the brink of bankruptcy. Despite its financial woes where the managers froze credit to institutions and other ordinary lenders, the bank loaned $8 million to the NRCC to continue its political campaigns. The full story is at Daily Kos.
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Saturday, September 27, 2008

A SAD GOODBYE TO BLUE EYES

Radio Free Canada mourns the death of actor Paul Newman at eighty-three from cancer. He was a great star not only as an actor but in the lives of very ill children with his The Hole in The Wall Gang foundation. His presence will be more missed as a human being than on the silver screen.


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Saturday, September 20, 2008

GOODNESS GRACIOUS!

Where have I been? I haven't give a presidential endorsement yet. Well, let's see.... I could come out for the McCain and Palin ticket but I would be condoning a candidate who had ties to criminal lobbying or who hired a religious wingnut for a VP pick. I could pick Obama who is a straight (but not narrow) arrow and his VP pick who has tons of foreign policy experience.

Hmm...I guess I will go for the Obama/Biden ticket. I think that Obama and Biden together have the intelligence, political savvy, experience, and humanity that is necessary to lead America . They are prudent in their beliefs, conservative in their finances, moderate in their personal behaviour, considerate to others (especially their spouses, unlike McCain who dumped his first marriage for a trophy wife), and responsible for their actions. Obama and Biden are the leaders that the United States needs to make the country once again respected in the world.
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GO FIGURE

The current troubles on Wall Street might seem arcane and esoteric but the story is very simple. Pull up a chair and let me tell you.

I attempted last night to explain the current financial crisis to my youngest child during supper. I was talking with my husband about the situation in our dinnertime wrap up of the day's events.She was becoming bored with the adult recitation. I decided to interpret the grownup conversation in words that she could understand.

First, I defined some of the terms. I asked her if she knew the meaning of assets. She, naturally, was not familiar with this word. I told her that assets are what you own like her clothes, furniture, and stuffies. This was sensible to the child. I then told her about the banks that were having difficulty because they claimed assets (money) that they do not have. An example of this was Citigroup whose managers asserted they had enough cash on hand to be solvent until the necessity of Abu Dhabi Investment Authority buying up their losses. I explained that the organization (Abu Dubai) bought the bank's (Citigroup's) pretend money, what adults call 'debt', with real money. My daughter thought to buy something imaginary with cash was nutters.

She was restless at that point. It was time for her to take a bath and get ready for bed so I did not have the opportunity to give the child a more broad picture of why the United States government bailout of Wall Street is crazily dangerous. The boil-down of the problem is that the Bush administration is buying debt (pretend money) with debt (more pretend money). This debt will go on sale to the world market which, if countries are pragmatic, won't either take the bag and buy the feigned assets or purchase the fakery with more leveraged commodities. The bailout is a sham, a political expediency from the Bush administration that deliberately overlooks the fact that the American government does not have the funds to buy out trillions of dollars worth of subprime mortgages, hedge funds, and jiggered accounting books that show a profit where there is none. The entire capitalistic system has failed.

My eight-year-old can understand the insanity of the Bush administration's non-funded buy-up of Wall Street. Why can't the grownups?

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Wednesday, September 17, 2008

DING, DONG

Dear Goddess, I am not having a flight of fancy or rubbing on the datura (used in medieval flying ointments) about the next news item. There have been reports that a witch hunter from Africa blessed Sarah Palin before her ascent to the governorship. The news accounts state that Pastor Muthee of Kenya blessed Mayor Palin so that she would become the chief executive of Alaska. This same minister led a pogram against a woman fortune teller named Mama Jane. The pastor accused her of causing traffic accidents near her house. The innocent, for no rational person believes someone can cause accidents through fortune-telling and other magicks, woman lost her house because the pastor led an angry mob against her.

Now, let's consider this in practical terms. Did the mob driving away the supposed witch fix the road near the house? No. Does killing an unarmed snake with a gun fix the roads or alleviate the poverty that causes the unsafe roads? No. Does building churches and saying prayers stop people from drinking alcohol and doing illicit drugs because they are in poverty's despair? In Kiambu District Province of Kenya where Pastor Muthee got rid of an alleged witch, the trauma of being poor continues. According to the administration police, "common crimes in the area are carjacking, robbery,house breaking, drug trafficking & illicit brews, rape amongothers." in the district.

Sarah Palin's Jesus did not help Kiambu recover from its woes. Her god will not be able to fix the train wreck that is the American economy.

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Monday, September 15, 2008

CONGRATULATIONS! LOVE WON OUT!

Radio Free Canada is over the moon and somewhere out of the galaxy about the pictures of George Takai's and Brad Altman's wedding. Takai, who was the character Sulu in the television series Star Trek, married his long-time partner on Sunday, September 14, 2008 at the National Center for the Preservation of Democracy in Los Angeles. Best wishes to Takai and his husband! Live long and prosper!

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A DANGEROUS CULT

Keith Olbermann on Sarah Palin's witch-hunting pastor.




WARNING: THIS VIDEO SHOULD NOT BE SHOWN TO CHILDREN OR THOSE WITH TRAUMA ISSUES.



Sarah Palin's Churches and The Third Wave from Bruce Wilson on Vimeo.

Gov. Sarah Palin is part of a dangerous religious cult that believes demons are trying to control the world. Specifically, the presence of demons and territorial spirits, witches, and generational curses cause social and ecological problems in society. The religious movement, called the Third Wave, believes in taking dominion over the world through prayer and violence. I know that this sounds even more off left field that my usual writing but there is sufficient video and other documented evidence about the Third Wave movement to give any intelligent person, those of us who are voting for mainstream Christians like Obama and Biden the heebie-jeebies. Please watch and decide for yourselves.

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Sunday, September 14, 2008

PASS THE POPCORN

Save the date. October 2 , 2008 is the vice presidential debate from St. Louis Missouri.

In the right corner is Gov. Sarah Palin, a one time second rate beauty queen with an out of wedlock knocked-up daughter. In the left corner is Sen. Joe Biden with years of political and foreign issues experience. Place your bets now. I think Palin won't last two rounds before Biden cleans her clock and sends her packing back to Wasilla. Does the term bitch slap mean anything? Palin is going to be an unhappy camper after October 2. While my sentiments might seem a bit harsh, Palin is the best gladiator show in many political years. There are a lot of people, especially women, who can't wait to see her hogtied and heaved out of the rink.

To up the ante for us north of the border, the Canadian prime ministerial debates are going on at the same time. It's sort of like trying to watch a hockey puck at a Canucks game with Pamela Anderson sitting behind the team goal.

Yeah, sometimes you have got to love politics as a blood sport. See ya 'round.

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY

Friday was the 50th birthday of the integrated circuit. The circuit was jointly discovered by Jack Kilby and Robert Noyce. If it were not for this small bit of technology, you would not be able to read this or any other blog. So, hooray and happy birthday to the integrated circuit!

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Saturday, September 13, 2008

THOSE PALIN WOMEN

This is not an attack on anyone in Palin's family. Goddess knows she has enough trouble there to keep her up to her knickers in diapers and Jamie Lynn Spears' burp cloths. No, this is about the women who support Sarah Palin.

I have been on forums with Palin supporters and read letters to the editor from such women. The general impression that I have when I read their opinions is that pro-Palin women aren't well-educated.

I belong to a forum called Women Against Palin. On the forum, a person who called herself thinkingwoman described Obama as a Muslim. Sen. Obama belongs to the United Church of Christ. I corrected her and she hasn't returned to the forum. It is typical in my experience when having a dialouge with very conservative women that they do not research their beliefs and often write in misspelled ALL CAPITAL LETTERS as if this would hide their ignorance. And yes, I am spelling 'dialouge' correctly, as someone who lives in Canada.

Furthermore, women who write letter to the editor in support of Palin have the tendency to cling to the emotional religious issues of abortion, stem cells, and homosexuality. They do not go for the red meat of domestic financial policy, education, infrastructure, and science. Foreign policy and economy is too far beyond their limited world view. Palin women are lost in a good little girl role of dress-up and baby dolls. Confronting real issues like the Russian invasion of Georgia would tax their brains like the question strained Palin's. No, a pissing match with Putin et al is not a good idea. Us and what army that is bogged down in Iraq?

However, conservative women's reluctance to dig into the hard matters of international politics and money is not surprising. Foreign relations and international economy do not affect, at least in their small-minded beliefs, their domestic status. Being "pro-life" and bashing gays protects the conservative woman's existence. Abortion takes away a conservative woman's reason to live which is basically to be a tube for procreation. Homosexuality threatens them because there are a lot of transvestites that look better in dresses than church ladies in polyester. For conservative women to create their politics on the soft feminine issues of babies and sexuality is only to save their minimal qualifications for being alive.

I intend to vote for Obama and Biden. I think that Obama's pick of someone who is on the foreign relations committee in the Senate and who has written at least seventy white papers on foreign and domestic issues (which are sold on Amazon.com and elsewhere) will be more effective than an ignorant war-mongering shrew like Palin who will involve the United States in disastrous wars that would cost more American lives and money.


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Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Sunday, September 07, 2008

SARAH PALIN IS A WIMP

The Republican Party has decided that Sarah Palin will not be able to meet with the press until the party operatives "...think it's time and when she feels comfortable doing it."

Well, obviously, her daughter is comfortable doing it but that shouldn't stop the mother from talking with the press. However, Sarah Palin will not withstand scrutiny "until the point in time when she'll be treated with respect and deference."

Hello? What does the Republican Party want? Mrs. Palin carried to the press area on a silk litter carried by Nubian slaves? Does the GOP think that they can make the American and international press wait for her beck and shrill? No, journalists are not going to tolerate this arrogant behaviour. If Palin wants to be known as someone who is competent enough to fill the secondary executive slot in the White House, she damn well better toches ahfen tish ( put her butt on the table) just like any other candidate.


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Thursday, September 04, 2008

GO BACK TO YOUR KITCHEN












Sarah Palin's rude comment of "I guess a small-town mayor is sort of like a community organizer,except that you have actual responsibilities." was a slap in the face of every woman who has used her precious and not too ample time to organize and volunteer to better her community.

Women these days do not have a lot of time. We have jobs or are looking for jobs in an economy that a Republican administration has destroyed for a trumped up war. At the same time, we care for children or elderly parents or both. Some of us are single mothers who struggle to meet ends financially yet still show up to lead Brownie troops or coach soccer. Some of us are women who have special needs children but find the spare moment every day to make the phone calls or to bake the cookies for the school fund raiser. We may not have much in terms of time and possessions but we give ourselves because we believe and have faith that society, through our efforts, will be stronger and safer for our families and for those families in our communities.

Sarah Palin, in her arrogant convention speech, has broken affinity and trust with these hardworking and compassionate Americans who volunteer their existence for the well-being of the country. She should be ashamed to run for office.It is essential for the good of the nation that voters return her to private life.


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Monday, September 01, 2008

SMELL THE COFFEE

Governor Sarah Palin is the wrong person for the job of United States VP. Note that I didn't say "woman" in the previous sentence. Palin, whatsoever, John McCain may think is not a fill for a gender gap. Ms. Palin is incompetent for the office of Vice-President regardless of her chromosomal attributes because of the many scandals that already plague her nomination. Thus far, she has been indicated in the nepotistic removal of dismissed Public Safety Commissioner Walt Monegan after he refused to fire a state trooper who had divorced Palin's sister. Her boyfriend,now her husband, was pulled over for driving under the influence several years ago. The current news about her seventeen-year-old daughter being preggers and unwed does not help the governor's belief that abstinence-based sex education works.

Governor Palin's role as a parent who should have had concern for her children and failed that destroys her credibility as someone who is a heartbeat away from the presidency. She should get her own home in order before she considers a run at being the top aide in the White House.

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Saturday, August 30, 2008

A TALK ABOUT PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY

So... The misnamed Reverend Jackson wants to cut Obama's, er, jewels off for talking about male responsibility in the African-American community. Hits a little close to your walnuts, doesn't it Rev.?

The Rev. Jesse Jackson,according to his Wiki profile and news sources, had an affair that produced a young daughter. He pays child support but the whole purpose of Obama giving a speech on fatherhood and the duties that go with it was to prevent incidents like that of the Rev. Jackson.

I think, and it is only my opinion as someone of mixed Native People and Caucasian ancestry, that the Rev. Jesse Jackson should step down as a spokesperson in the Democratic Party. Leave the morality about fatherhood to those like Obama who walk the talk.

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Wednesday, August 27, 2008

A CANDIDATE FOR THE SHORT DROP

A federal jury gave Joseph Edward Duncan III a death penalty sentence for his murder of a Coeur d'Alene family. Duncan killed three members of the Groene family with a hammer. He had stalked the family from North Dakota to Idaho in order to kidnap the family's younger children to sexually abuse them. He kidnapped 9-year-old Dylan and 8-year-old Shasta Groene after the murder of their family. He killed Dylan with a shotgun and then burned the body.

If there is anyone who would benefit from Duncan getting a lethal injection, it would be the family's survivors. It would be a rest to the nightmares of the murderer some day gaining parole. Or knowing that taxpayers pay the bills to shelter, clothe, and feed this monster. There cannot be a quicker resolution to the horror but Duncan's swift trip to being strapped to a gurney.


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Monday, August 25, 2008

BARENAKED BAD YEAR

It seems like a million dollars can't keep BNL from the headlines.
Canadian rocker and BNL frontman Ed Robertson survived a plane crash in Ontario.

The musician's Cessna 206 crashed into some trees as he was trying to take off from Baptiste Lake near Bancroft Ontario.

Robertson and his passengers walked away from the crash with minor scratches.

Guys, life is telling you to take a break. First there was Steven Page's arrest for cocaine possession which might net him 5 1/2 years in gaol, now a plane crash. Does the phrase "slow down" have any meaning?

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Friday, August 22, 2008

NOW I FEEL DAMN SILLY....

.... and relieved. I got the results of the mammogram and I'm okay. However, I feel foolish. I did not realize that a woman with my,um, small assets can also have hard to read mammograms. The breast tissue of a woman with minimal chest area can be, well, compact and difficult to read in a standard mammogram. The second x-ray was a spot compression or cone view of the left breast where the tech presses just a little bit more on the area with the x-ray plates and takes more pictures to get a better look-see. This procedure is not more painful than a standard mammogram, if you aren't a 36 J-cup. I would hate to think of how painful those are under the big squeeze. I'm glad to be me. Furthermore, women who wear large bra sizes have an increased risk of type 2 diabetes. It's good to be of modest means.

My doctor was pleased with the results but she told me to continue to monitor my breasts for lumps or other changes. This is wise advice for women of any size.


Keep well. Until next time, ta-tas!

Saturday, August 16, 2008

UP FOR THE SLAUGHTERHOUSE













I am an ovo-vegetarian but a PETA campaign that uses the stabbing murder of Tim McLean to promote their vegan agenda is disgusting. A shrimp dinner is almost tempting as a way to give the finger to an organization that has compared meat eating to the Holocaust and promotes itself on the brutal slaying of an innocent man.

I, unlike the PETA eejits, am a sensible vegetarian. I think that limiting one's intake of meat is more healthy for the cardiovascular system. However, I abhor the fluffy bunny crowd that equates animal life with human life. I am not ungrateful or ashamed of my First People (Native American and Native Canadian) ancestors who ate salmon and venison for their survival. The First People ate what they needed to eat to continue their lives. Extreme veganism is the ideology of the dietary spoiled who can drive to the local grocery store and buy their tofu dogs. If it was necessary for me to survive on meat then I would have no trouble sitting down to a meal.

PETA followers need to pull their heads out of their beansides and see how luxurious veganism is compared to those who had or who have so little in terms of sustenance.


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Friday, August 15, 2008

MORE MAMMOGRAM INFO

I received this letter in the mail. It is a form letter that the British Columbia Cancer Agency sends out after a dubious mammogram. I scanned it and removed personal specifics such as address and care provider from the letter. I am posting it because it has more detailed information on mammograms and breast cancer.

NOTE: Please click on the jpeg to see the letter's text.

I hope that this will give more assurance to women dreading a second procedure and a realistic perspective on diagnostic mammogram.


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Thursday, August 14, 2008

WE MOURN

Whatever confronts me in my personal life, there cannot be the same devastation that is in Arkansas. A gunman shot and killed state Democratic Party chairman Bill Gwatney on Wednesday.

Police shot and killed murderer Timothy Dale Johnson after a high-speed chase. Earlier, Johnson had painted obscene graffiti on the Target store where he worked.

Officers later found a Post-It note with the chairman's name and keys from one of Gwatney's car dealerships at the killer's home.

This is the second attack on those of the liberal persuasion in less than two months. Underlying the attacks are work-related fears, anxieties, and paranoias. The American economy is stressed to its limits and so are those who are unemployed or underemployed. I know the strain of not being sure when the next paycheque will arrive or if my writing career will ever get past piecemeal stage. I've gone through ill health and no money. Health I hopefully retain at this point but there were times in the past where it has been touch and go. Life is sometimes difficult.

However, there is no reason to hurt or kill out of the pain and fear of a down-turned economy. The victims of wage rage are, in a shooter's mind, symbols of the financial devastation in America. These deaths don't touch the core of what is wrong in the United States. The fatalities won't change the mismanagement of the real estate market, nor the human and monetary cost of the Iraq war, or the country's failing infrastructure. Only each person's constructive and patient work will create a difference to solve these problems.

We are all neighbours in the same tough situation. We stick together or fall individually apart.

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Monday, August 11, 2008

GETTING ANOTHER DAMN...

...MAMMOGRAM. This time it is a diagnostic test because the tech found a shadow on the film which is "abnormal, of low suspicion."

No, the preceding quote does not represent my state of mind unless you're a John Bircher conservative or Fundie Christian who stumbles across my blog. Crazy liberals. I'm fine (really!) but was at first a little panicked when I initially talked to the person who called me while I was on the way out to breakfast with my family. She said that there was "an area of concern" which left me confused because that usually refers to my brain. I had some time with my family, then returned home and called the clinic again. It seems that they aren't ready, yet, to strap me to a gurney and start pit mining in my chest. The diagnostic mammogram is a precautionary measure because of my family history of breast cancer.

There are two types of mammogram, screening and diagnostic. The initial x-rays are a general sweep of the chest area to see if a lump exists. If there is something awry then a secondary diagnostic with more focused x-rays or ultrasound is necessary to ensure that the object warrants surgery.

I have a diagnostic follow-up on Monday, August 18th. Yes, I am a bit scared and afraid to go to the appointment. I want to crawl under the bed with my teddy bear and a blankie. However, ignorance is more harmful than knowledge. That's why I'm not a John Bircher or Fundie Evangelical.

Don't be afraid to find out a hard and painful truth. I know my life, and the lives of other women who are terrified with the spectre of cancer can be saved with taking just one extra step.

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Sunday, August 10, 2008

GOT THE DAMN....

....MAMMOGRAM

I get the results in about a week.

Yes, it was kind of like pressed flowers but the tech, bless her, was as careful as could be when she had to squish my baby feeders in two x-ray plates. Fortunately, as I have written elsewhere, my greatest assets are between my ears and not my shoulders or I would be in hurt city and lugging an ice pack out of the clinic. Take that you wanna be porn stars, fashion models, and trophy wives (including my ex-brother-in-law's new hootchy who went the sandbag route for her buried treasures). I was only uncomfortable but I will never feel your pain.

That's all there is until I know more. For now, ta-tas!

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Saturday, August 09, 2008

BAD PUPPY, NO SPEECH





John Edwards, with the revelation about an affair with Rielle Hunter, should not speak at the Democratic National Convention.

He lied about not having the affair to the media. He hurt his wife who was later diagnosed with breast cancer. John Edwards is not fit for any public office. Mr. Edwards should take the honourable route and recuse himself from participation in the Democratic Party. He is a liability who should hang his sorry, cheating tail between his legs (and not someone else's) and stay away from the DNC.



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Wednesday, July 30, 2008

THE FACE OF THE RIGHT

A gunman killed two people on Sunday in a Knoxville Tennessee Unitarian church. He wounded several others.

Jim D. Adkisson hid a .12 gauge shotgun in a guitar case and pulled it out to shoot during a rehearsal of the musical Annie. The killer cited, in a four-page letter, his hatred of liberals. He wrote that liberals were destroying the country and had prevented him from obtaining employment.In a search of Adkisson's home, there were several right-wing books, including Michael Savage’s book Liberalism is a Mental Disorder. Adkission killed 60-year-old Greg McKendry and 61-year-old Linda Kraeger who was visiting from another UU congregation. Eight people were wounded.

The sludge rises in this case. Underneath its hoity-toity facade, the conservative movement is made of those who are undereducated, illiterate, and just plain stupid. The conservatives attract the scholastic inept. An intelligent person would read budget analysis and realize that the right-wing Bush administration has cut off help to those disenfranchised. I am, as a liberal, an excellent researcher. When I marched against the invasion of Iraq, for example, before the war it was not because of a lack of patriotism or such sentimental rot but because I read the U.S. Army War College analysis of the possible consequences which would be costly both in terms of human life and finances.
Conservatives should confess that, as an ideology, their beliefs are a destructive menace to a strong America and a safe world.

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Tuesday, July 22, 2008

STEVE, WE LOVE YOU BUT...






is there a succession plan at Apple Inc.? In a recent eWeek article there was some concern about Mr. Jobs' health, specifically that he was looking awfully thin and pale at his last appearance. There was also mention that there was no second in command.

As a conscientious CEO, it is necessary for Mr. Jobs to have a clear hierarchy to succeed him should he again fall ill with cancer. According to news reports, there is no re-occurrence. Or it need not be sickness. Accidents in life do happen. An industry leader must show wise example to his or her employees by being prepared for known probabilities such as one's mortality.

Thus written, I hope Mr. Jobs enjoys good health and a long, creative life. Radio Free Canada sends him a wish to rest, and take a hot cup of virtual tea.

UPDATE: Mr. Jobs does not have cancer according to news reports. He has nutritional issues related to the surgery that excised the tumour.

Stay cool, we luv you mon.



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Thursday, July 17, 2008

GOD ONLY KNOWS



being gay is natural. Homosexual and bisexual behaviour characterizes not only mammals other than humans but also birds and insects. In a recent article in the Scientific American, bisexuality ranges from beetles to bonobos.

However, try to inform this to the eejits that make up the dissenters to the Anglican Church's policy of ordaining a gay American bishop and female bishops. Several African, Asian, and other know-nothing congregations have threatened to leave the Anglican Church because homosexuality is "against the Bible". In the meantime the Right Reverend Gene Robinson, whose appointment caused the kerfuffle, is showing up at the once in a decade Lambeth conference in Canterbury despite the Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams' demand that Rev.Robinson not attend. Hmmm.... I wonder if Rev. Robisnon will bring the mister, having married his partner in June 2008. The Right Reverend John Bryson Chane (former blues drummer...daddy-o), of the Washington Cathedral in Washington D.C. no less, has threatened to bring his own constituents to crash the proceedings with as many gays and lesbians as he can find. Perhaps they will rename this the Lambda conference.

It seems to me that the protesters to gays in the Anglican Church can take what's left of their marbles and leave. They'll be gone but the over 1500 species that dance on both sides of the ballroom, from our cousin apes to the smallest church mouse, will still be at the party.

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Wednesday, July 16, 2008

IF I HAD A MILLION DOLLARS



I'd buy you a brain. Bare Naked Ladies front man Steven Page has been arrested for drugs in New York city, specifically cocaine and marijuana possession.

This is very stupid. BNL has been committed to several charities including those for the environment and for AIDS causes. Steven Page's arrest embarrasses the band which is a Canadian icon and an environmental ambassadorship.

Shame. Canada, and the world, is watching Mr. Page to see if he has a valid reason for his innocence or remorse for his guilt.


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Saturday, July 12, 2008

DISNEY PACKS HEAT



Walt Disney World in Florida has shot down a proposal to have their employees bring handguns in their car. The National Rifle Association in Florida has passed a law in that state allowing people to take guns and secure them in their cars. The Magic Kingdom has fired a security guard, Edwin Sotomayor, for bringing a gun to work and leaving it in his car to protest the zero tolerance policy that Disney has mandated for its employees.

I think the CEOs of Disney are well within their rights to ban guns from theme park and administrative properties. Guns are a huge insurance liability and a potential source of immense tragedy. The nightmare scenario is of an employee who forgets to lock the car or of a car that is jacked and used to commit a crime either on the employer's property or at another location. Too, one never knows when an employee will go "postal" and seek to harm tourists or fellow employees. Businesses, especially in the entertainment industry, need to protect their clients and their workers. A ban on guns brought to work and left in a parked car is a sensible response for workplace safety.

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Thursday, July 10, 2008

"GET THE DAMN...

....MAMMOGRAM...."
I am. My maternal grandmother died of breast cancer when my mother was age six. My mother had breast cancer but survived. Breast cancer worldwide, each year, claims 548,000 lives. Women aged 40 to 79 are encouraged to have a mammogram every two years.

There are all sorts of excuses to avoid the exam with the main complaint that having one's knockers pressed between two x-ray plates is as much fun and just as painful as watching Auntie Myrtle's slide show of her precious Fifi dog's teeth cleaning. Well, a mammogram is the only time I am glad that I will never grace the centrefold of Playboy unless someone does a few rounds of heavy duty Photoshop. I like being in line with my 3 to 4 size jeans. However, there is no cover for any shape or cup to forgo this vital test.

The date for my mammogram is August 6, 2008. I'll post the results. Until then, ta tas!


This has been a Radio Free Canada public service announcement.



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Wednesday, July 09, 2008

VERDICT










The building remains intact. I arrived to the townhouse this evening heavily sedated with a grande Calm tea from Starbucks and my blood sugar somewhere around my toes. I was a little woozy. Shouldn't have had the caffeine rush of Ceylon and China tea blend with a twist of Madagascar vanilla at breakfast. Phantasms of architectural ruin haunted me during the day with thoughts of the wall crumbled and my kitchen in ruins.


I feared for my Corelle dishes which the company now does not manufacture. They are a beige colour with petite blue flowers circling the edge. Very lovely. The white Pottery Barn dishes that I own I could have set quite cheerfully in the slab's path. The set was a gift from my relative and that, with the Fiesta ware of searing red and orange (again Pottery Barn) which was another gift from same relative, could have been "an unfortunate accident" if I had the cojones to do away with the lot. Oops.


There is not anything more depressing than brightly tinted dinnerware for a night-owl with sombre literary preferences. Our choice of dinnerware show the personality differences between my relative and me. She is urban professional to the tips of her manicured fingernails and likes the hues of sunny climes. I, in contrast, am a struggling neo-Victorian gothic writer whose favourite ankle length dress is a dark Aesthetic indigo sprinkled with early Spring morning blue forget-me-nots or a pair of army green khaki pants from Value Village where I shop not due to any lack of funds but it is the only place on the island I can find thus far that carries a size 3 or 4 trousers. They're comfortable in their slim fit and so am I.


I am also very, very much less frenetic in my imagination than I was before my arrival to the townhouse.

My fears were not realized. The plates are without damage. The house is what it is , simply a way-stop. I did not stay for the excision of the concrete with the consideration it would be better not to have my youngest in the line of danger. The only scars that remain are exposed boards where the concrete had a precarious hitch. There are no prises for the contest and I am an extremely less anxious writer.

I suppose I should offer some consolation prises. These are:

1. My unfailing devotion and eternal friendship. You can't cash it at a bank but it's there forever.

2. A promise not to blog Britney Spears or Paris Hilton or whatever media created bimbo next arrives on the tabloid scene.

3. A promise to blog off the liberal mainstream. I don't know about you, but I think everyone has heard about "climate change".

4. A friendly Public Service Announcement from yours dearly at least once a year.

5. To keep my sense of humour even when I read and comment on the most difficult subjects.

WHAT'S HAPPENING IN MY LIFE













This is a slab of concrete that fell from a wall at my rented townhouse. This was a privacy partition
that dropped off the wall a few feet from where we live. There is one close to us that hasn't fallen yet and we can't use our front door to go in or out for fear of dislodging the nearby slab which weighs about 1000 pounds. The owners were warned a year ago that this was a problem but did nothing.

Luckily, no one was hurt. The man that lives near the dropped slab usually sits outside on his porch. The load hit and flipped over the fence. It rained and our neighbour was inside.

Okay, here's the deal. The staff at the complex is coming today at 11:30 a.m. Pacific Standard Time. This big baby is on a wall held by nothing but a few nails. They are taking this off with a crane that they will situate on the roof. Winners who bet on the wall, the roof, or the fence going out will have a chance to be the guest columnist for one of my blogs free. There's a 30% chance the concrete slab will take out some building structure.


The rules are nothing smutty (keep it G to PG rated, please) and relevant to the topic on each blog. One is a political blog,Radio Free Canada and the other is a blog about the writing trade, The Writer's Home.

Furthermore, all considered prises are null and void if there is death or major injury to the workers, bystanders, writer of the contest, or any of her family or friends during the take down of the wall.

Place your bets in my in-box.

Anne

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Friday, July 04, 2008

WE REMEMBER



A memorial has been set up for four Mounties that were slain in the line of duty.
The

memorial in Mayerthorpe, Alberta for constables Brock Myrol, Peter Schiemann, Anthony Gordon and Leo Johnston has generated controversy from some family members that did not approve of the statues.

I respect the families that feel grief at the memorial. The government should have listened to all those concerned in the decision. However, it is also a time to honour once again those that have died in the line of duty in their capacities as police, firefighters, and emergency personnel.

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IT'S NOT THAT HARD, EH?









Google did not have a logo for Canada Day this year despite it being British Columbia's 150th birthday and Quebec's 400th (girlfriends. you don't look a day over sixty, just like her Maj the Queen).

Google, instead of creating an apology, had some whinging PR shill explain that it rotates logos.

How difficult would it be to make a logo? The graphic that you see on your screen took me about 25 minutes tops in GIMP. Cheese off, you hosers.

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Thursday, May 22, 2008

YOM HULEDET SAME'ACH!





Taking time out of my still manic schedule of homeschooling, kids' birthday parties, gardening, Girl Guiding, kid's ear infections, classes in sustainable agriculture et cetera, looking for freelance work, and novel writing.

At least I don't have to deal with the Yorkshire brat. I saw the tartette briefly this weekend and it was all I could do to not grab an onion bulb from the fridge (we didn't have garlic) and turn the plastic chopsticks from the utensil drawer into impromptu crosses. She did not stay. The Goddess has little mercies.

Let me take a deep breath here and get to the point after a week with children and teens and teaching the arcane mysteries of double-digit addition and subtraction to an eight-year-old or discussing static electricity with an almost fifteen-year-old.

Just a pause to wish comedian Billy Crystal
Yom Huledet Same'ach! Happy 60th Birthday!


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Tuesday, April 01, 2008

THE HERO FIELDS




Dith Pran



September 27,1942 - March 30,2008



This obituary was written at the request of
a journalist friend. I am thankful to the person in question for pointing out
the story.



Dith Pran was a photojournalist who

survived the cruel regime of Pol Pot. The movie The Killing Fields was about his experience. He was a brave soul
among horrible circumstances. Dith Pran died of pancreatic cancer at the age of
sixty-five.


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Friday, March 28, 2008

A TRUE BIRTH DEFECT



Secretary of State Condi Rice has said that slavery existed in America because of a moral birth defect.

Nonsense.


Slavery existed (and still exists) because people are greedy for power and money. The Bush administration knows about this particular ethical failing. There is no end, with over 4,000 soldiers dead in Iraq and thousands more Iraqis slaughtered, to the disaster created in Iraq in the Bush Administration's rush for oil.

I read the article about the Secretary of State with horror, and a lucky sense of irony. When I clicked through to the story, a banner ad appeared of a young girl with a cleft palate. I grabbed the picture with the Print Screen function of my computer. After excising the browser frame from the image, this is the talk back to Condi's lazy metaphor.


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Sunday, March 23, 2008

TRIBUTE TO A WIZARD



"Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night."



My daughter and I watched a video about Terry Pratchett and his diagnosis of Alzheimer's.

The dialogue is as follows:

Eldest daughter: "Why couldn't this have happened to George Bush?"

Me: "You mean it hasn't?"

Eldest daughter: "Nice..."

High fives.

Terry Pratchett is not only fighting his own demons but the creatures of bureaucracy. The beloved novelist is challenging the United Kingdom National Health Service to provide Aricept for early Alzheimer's disease instead of its use in the more severe cases. Haven't these eejits heard of preventative medicine? I have relatives in the medical profession and they have always told me that treating a disease early is better than waiting for it to degenerate into something more cumbersome or lethal.

Okay, penny pincers are stupid. They want to go for the most "cost-effective" remedy even though the "inexpensive" solution will cost more later...

Take them down, Terry. We're cheerleading you.



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Friday, March 21, 2008

WONDERS NEVER CEASE

Scientists have found strange and wonderful creatures in the Antarctic's Ross Sea. Some of the creatures include two foot starfish and large sea spiders. The finds are part of a year-long study to catalogue and protect the biological diversity of the Antarctic.



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Thursday, February 21, 2008

HAPPY, HAPPY!










Okay, so I am homeschooling my youngest. Long story about her being bullied that will take a while to explain. Suffice to write that some Brit girls vie for fishwife status in their tender elementary school years
. I call the monster Alisoun for the Chaucer character although she comes from Yorkshire,not Bath. Almost needless to report, but germane to the situation,the school my daughter attended does not understand the unhappy situation. They had retained my daughter in the same classroom with the tarty thugette. I am searching for alternatives for my daughter's education

While this has all evolved, I have become a Girl Guide co-leader, am still looking for work as a freelance writer, and struggling through a second novel even though the first remains unpublished.

I am tired but pause to take time out of my manic schedule of writing, homeschooling, and (pointless) meetings with the school, to wish Alan Rickman HAPPY BIRTHDAY!


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