Memorial Day

Memorial Day
The sun never sets on what heroes do.

Friday, May 29, 2015

Sittin’ back in the ole’ rockin’ chair

Today's Tids Issue 3,347
Opening Stuff:

Inane or insane, Department:
I’ve taken to listening to books on tape when driving. I just can’t take the endless reiterations of the sports talkers, especially the overdone deflated football caper. And, now with the  emerging political harangue about lots of stuff that has no baring on my life or this good old country, I figure I could go insane if I don’t take action.. Listening to inane mindless books, mysteries mainly, will add years to my life. It also helps my eyes. Of course, I could listen to music, but that would relax my mind to the point of driving off the road, which is entirely contradictory to my objectives behind the wheel.

Life was pretty much all good when you were waiting for the tooth fairy, or Santa or the Easter Bunny. Today I spend 3 to 4 hours a couple of days a week waiting for the Golf Elf, but he never shows. I guess I just have to do it myself.

I continue to laugh at the hapless efforts of journalists. Just this morning I heard Dennis Hastert described as “Bush’s speaker”. In the reality of the USA system nothing could be farther from the truth, as the entire concept of American= is the preservation of the divide between the Branches. But we live in a “Get Bush’ world where many of the anti’s have exhibited extreme insanity in their rants. It’s a crying shame that the fourth estate misses or misrepresents the truth so much of the time. Or, just isn’t smart enough to know what’s true.

The Questions:
Double Q Day: 1. Who was the first woman to be elected to Congress and The Senate? 2. Mount Everest is looking like Newport after the tourists leave, with wrappers and clutter everywhere, as climbers seemingly clamber over each other to reach the top. Who was the first to reach the top, and who was his=is guide in what year?

The Headlines:
--Market Could Open Lower As Q1 GDP Turns Negative; Chicago Purchasing Agent Survey Indicates rebound In May.
--Ex-Speaker Hastert Indicted On federal Money handling; Mystery friend At Core Of Misdeeds.
--US Recon Flights Spot Artillery Installations On Chinese Manufactured Islands; Concerns Raised About Beijing Intentions.
--US Tells Iraq “It’s You’re Fight”; WH Says US Will Not be Responsible For Their Security Situation.
--Bodies Continue To Be recovered In Texas Flooding Rivers.
--1;400 In India Now Dead Due to unrelenting Heat Wave.
—New Downcity Homicides Add To Baltimore’s deadliest Month.
--National Speling Bee Ends In Tie; Americans Of India Heritage Continoo Trend Of Fellow Indian Spellers Over Past Five Years.

You have to wonder how much of the money flowing into the personal bank accounts of FIFA is US Foreign Aid bucks coming from American tax payers.

In case you are interested, the states with the worst spellers are Idaho, Utah, Wyoming, New Mexico, South Dakota, Nebraska and Iowa. The Best are Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Florida, Virginia, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Vermont, Conn and Mass. RI was just a notch below the best grouping and would have been included if I didn’t live there! Once again, The Tids tips the balance.

Putin has been relatively quiet lately, but his subterranean housed hackers are attacking in full force. You have to think that the bare-chested boss of the Bear woke one day saying aha, bullets hurt and bombs destroy, but I can rule the world with software.

If the NFL behemoth trips up under the load of its own popularity, there’s another “sport” waiting in the wings. One of the fastest growing spectator enjoyments now being called a sport is gaming. Yes, the same gaming with pale faced hulks sitting in the dark, nimble fingers flying across magic eBoxes. Yes eSports has arrived big time, filling large arenas as across the USA, Can little League Gamers be far behind?  

I’d like to see a little more of Windward Pines in the daylight. At times last night it was tough telling who was talking, or doing what to whom.

Johnny Depp is learning that laws are laws. There is nothing humorous about the celebrity smuggling dogs into a land that’s say no and means it. 10 years in jail may be a little lengthy, but a good dose of time would be good for all to see.

The latest data has Google’s Android at 80% of the world mobile device software and Apple is  at 16%. Just in case you live by perceptions alone. The good news here is that if you own Apple stock, there’s plenty fo room for growth.

Reading Between the Liens Movie reviews:
--What’s to say about San Andreas that isn’t implied in the title  -- It’s Summer and time for a disaster. This disaster flick is good if you like disaster flicks, especially because there is some value acting and very cool special effects. It’s all about destruction, and people helping people…you know, the usual disaster flick stuff.
--Aloha is a poor to bad movie starring a couple, of big celebs Emma Stone and Bradley Cooper. The two some find romance in the computer room as consultant Bradley is watched over by Lt. Emma as they both try to stop a rocket launch. It just doesn’t hold together very well, but it may tickle the hearts of all who love romantic comedies. But, don’t expect much. The critics hated it, the consumers barely abided.

The Answer:
1. Of course, it was Maine’s own Margaret Chase Smith who set a powerful tone of elegance and capability for all woman in higher office. We used to have men and women like Margaret running our government. 2. Edmund Hillary and guide Tenzing Norgay planted the first flag atop the forbidding mountain. That was in 1953.

Time for a nice weekend. I’m rooting for The Cavs to give Cleveland it‘s first professional sports championship since 1948! ( Note: The Browns won the AFC in 1964 –which was huge then -- but not the NFL final.

Something for your background listening enjoyment. A nice orchestral choral piece from Copelkand’s Tender Land.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Hindsight is great for lawyers.

Today's Tids Issue 3.346
Opening Stuff:

That sound you may hear from time to time this morning as I write this morning mess is the roar of the Blue Angels flying overhead as they practice for the Giant RI Airshow this weekend. Yes those magnificent machines with their incredible pilots always zoom over my little dwelling as they use almost the entire 30 miles or so of the Narragansett Bay to maneuver and perform their magic. When I lived across the Bay, a little closer to the airfields art Quonset, I could see the smiles on the pilot’s faces as they flew low though our neighborhood. I felt as I mowed the lawn, honored that these guys were flying by. I stopped and waved.

*There’s no truth to the rumor that the FIFA executive thieves were stashing their hundreds of millions in the Clinton Foundation.

I’m thinking at this point in time that the Fed will be more prone to let the banks fail the next time they get themselves in trouble. It is the best thing for restoring the integrity of a free market system, Capitalism the way it works. There will be much pain in the process, but coddling does not a great country make.. Self regulated risk taking is far better than Government edicts.

So now we have it – Rick Santorum versus Hillary Clinton. I think the Repubs are in trouble.

The Question:
Double Q day! 1. Multiple choice: Pick the year in which The Sierra Club was organized – 1854   1892   1928   1963. Bonus – What city?  2. Multiple births are becoming the norm these days, but in 1934 the quintuples of Papa and Mama Dionne was a rarity. What were the names of the five famous females?

The Headlines:
--Dollar Versus Yen Tops Twelve Year High; Greek Woes G+Could Affexct Tioday;s Makets.
--Quinnipiac Continuous Presidential Poll Lists 5 Of 20 Repub Candidates As Tops: 10% -- Jebster and Mario; Just Behind And Tied Are Scott Walker, Huck And Ben Carson; At 7% Is Rand With Ted Cruz At 6% And The Hairpiece at 5%; Dems – Hill Down 3 Points To 57% Followed By Bernie At 15%; Hill Cruising Past Repubs In Head-To-Heads.
--Pentagon Shipped Live Anthrax To Nine States.
--Five Most Shorted Stocks In  May: Serius XM, Advanced Micro Devices, Mankind, Frontier Comm, Intel; Rest Of Top Ten – Blackberry, Microsoft, Apple, Express Scripts Holding and Micron Technology.
--Johnny Depp Looking At Jail Time In Australia For Smuggling Dogs; Kangaroos And Koalas Unhappy With Intruders.
--US Pilots Unhappy About “Heavy handed Rules Of Engagement” In Efforts Against ISIS In Iraq.
--Five Islamists Traded For Bergdahl Will Be Free To Travel In Days.
--IRS Believes Cyber Attack Originated In Russia.

The Military Editor of The Tids was given a serious “Time Out” by a well educated reader for his opinions yesterday on the Iraq War and Sadaam Hussein. I have to agree that Sadaam in place may have been better for a more orderly Middle East. Despotic Maniacs tend to scare people into behaving nicely. It’s too bad that some aspects of world peace is dependent on them.

Grammar and Syntax Counts, Department:
Sign in Nairobi: “Take Notice: When this sign is under water, this road is impassable.” –Nairobi Restaurant: “Customers who find our waitresses rude ought to see the manager.” –In a Swiss restaurant: “Our wines leave you nothing to hope for.” –Lobby of Moscow Hotel across from Russian Orthodox Monastery: “You are welcome to visit the cemetery, where famous Russian and Soviet composers, artists and writers are buried daily, except Thursday”

The Santorum hypothesis above isn’t out of the question, because with 20, count em’, 20 candidates belittling each other in the primaries, you can never tell which special sub group will rise up to push their candidate to the top. And this against a women who should be easily beaten, a candidate with a rap sheet of offences bordering on felonies, with a history of bad judgments, who is protected by a media that appears out to get every Repub candidate before their hats land in the ring.

I like the music of Aaron Copeland. One pleasant piece for relaxing is The Tender Land

By the way, what is it with all of this revisiting of the Iraq War voting. I prefer elections about the future. The media seems to be propagating this argument because the subject can only make candidates look bad. Frankly, it means zero to me.

As I watch The Hill pipe her flute enticing the hoards of adoring female audiences to the cliffs, I can only think that she will be governing but half of the population if, God help us, she is elected.

Good news for all of us who hate getting those unwanted, often threatening robo-phone calls. The FCC is enlisting the help of wireless and wire line companies to use existing laws and blocking technology to stop the noise! The perpetrators can cry “Free Country” but to me it is breaking and entering, pure and simple. Of course if you’re a lonely old geezer who likes junk mail and a friendly voice urging you to send over your life savings or risk going to jail, than I guess you are gonna be a little sad with the stoppage. And my heart aches for your loneliness. Go to church.

I’m not saying I’m for profiling, but of the more than a few reported murders locally and nationally the past week or so, the alleged killers had dreadlocks and evil eyes.

I see where archeologists have just solved a 435,000 year old murder! Maybe the NFL could get them to work on the deflated ball caper.

Speaking of the NFL and the huge amount of money residing in their vaults, I’m thinking of how easy it would be for them to go the way of FIFA. There is just so much money in sports, with most of it coming from Media rights. It’s just money building upon money and really not doing much of anything. Even after paying enormous salaries for ball players, there is still tons left over for the slippery pockets of officials like those in the soccer world. And ironically, the payers of all the dough aren’t hurting at all. The media companies have the top five highest paid CEO’s in the USA -- David Zaslav (Discovery Communications -$150 Mil), and Les Moonves – $54.4 Mil. The rest of the top five are from Disney, Comcast and Times Warner. So what does all of this top heavy money mean? – It means that the consumer is paying way too much for everything – game tickets, cable and wireless fees and stuff at the grocery store.

*I was just making this up and joking when I wrote it. But upon reading of the early news this morn I saw that the FIFA did in fact contribute to the Clinton Money Machine.

The Answer:
1. The Sierra Club was organized in 1892 in San Fran, And I always thought is was an outgrowth of the 60’s hippie movement. Just shows to=you how misguided you can be relying on perceptions. 2. The celebrated Canadian fivesome who churned out a lot of cash for dad, but did not lead such great lives   for themselves were Annette, Cecile, Emilie, Marie and Yvonne.

Gotta go! See you all tomorrow, everybody!

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

May will never be July.

Today's Tids Issue 3,345
Opening Stuff:

People seem to have trouble believing in May. It’s part of our new instant gratification syndrome…that when winter ends people can immediately go to the beach and bask forgetting about what’s always been. They, mainly the young, see technology altering and controlling everything, so why not nature.  If we can shrink the globe through communications and the internet why can’t we condense the time between the extreme cold of February and intense heat of July? People like to romanticize the rebirth of spring and the feeling of love in the air, just so longs as it’s getting warmer faster. Of course, the fidgety among us can move to a hot muggy climate and sit in an air conditioned room to wonder why winter isn’t there yet. And that my friends, is why we don’t have world peace.

I’m not buying Sandra Bullock as the Most beautiful Woman in the World.

What do you think Hillary is going to do for us if she is elected President other than to assure herself more money for retirement?

The Question:
Name five formerly super jobs now on the wane?

The Headlines:
--Hackers get Into IRS Location To Steal Data from 100,000 Households; IRS Officials Say It Appears To be Organized Criminal Effort.
--190 Point Pulldown Yesterday Not Phasing Wall Street Denizens; Europe And London Stocks Higher..
--7 Official Soccer Group FIFA Execs Arrested and 14 More Indicted in US Corruption Investigation; Swiss Feds Have Opened Criminal Proceedings On the Awarding Of The 2018 and 201222 World Soccer Cup Cities.
--Storm Deaths Up To 17 As Texas Prepares for More Rain.
--al-Qaida In Syria Tweeting “Jihad” To 200,000 Followers.
--Freedom Watch Files Racketeering Statutes Lawsuit Against Clintons.
--England Study Says Third Generation Birth Control Pills Cause Blood Clots.

While reading a review of a new restaurant, I was pleased to see these words following a description of the d├ęcor: “…and the ceiling is covered with cork to provide serenity rather than the cacophony and chaos of many of today’s ne restaurants. Three cheers for peace while dining, or just plains old eating.

Of course my stomach my not be so serene after seeing that a specialty of the house is grilled octopus arms. Yikes. It probably tastes like chicken.

The reason weather seems different to people is because they forget what weather has always been.

To soften the coming rhetoric of the political campaigns, I may start inserting serene verses from Wordswroth and other poets of yore. “…Now, in this blank of things, a harmony, home-felt, and home created, comes to heal. That grief for which the senses still supply Fresh food; for only then, when memory Is hushed, am I at rest. My Friends! restrain Those busy cares that would allay my pain; Oh! leave me to myself, nor let me feel The officious touch that makes me droop again.” Or something like that.

Most arguments in modern society are based on where you find your data.

Learning history about anything helps put everything better into perspective. And probably would be leading to more understanding between all of life’s warring factions, including teens and parents.

As tensions rise between China and USA over China’s aggressive takeover of international waters, it would be wise to take a couple of backstrokes back and sit upon a tropical manmade island to discuss how stupid a war between the two economic giants would be – for both sides.  It may be impressive to some to be bold and powerful for bold and powerful sake, but when the prospects are only deaths of tens of thousands to achieve a 0-0 tie, the idea is non-sensecal at best. There are many “White Papers” emerging about the prospects of a war here, and it is best to ignore and appeal to sanity instead of building a war machine. Too may white papers that are written to get a passing grade in a Master’s program find their way into the new world of viral information.

For some reason, the Iraq war is currently a subject of political posturing in the big Campaign. For the record, I was for the actions against Iraq and not because of the WMD’s, which frankly I thought was a weak case as presented by Colin at the UN. No, I wanted to blast Sadaam for his blatant rejection of at least 15 warnings from the basically toothless UN. Somebody has to step up every once in a while to take action that enforces words. The problem was that both the Iraq and Afghanistan (Also entirely justified in light of 911) efforts went on far too long. Of course if the wars were actually run by the military from the beginning, they probably would have been over in a reasonable amount of time.

There is a lot of action in the press this morning touting a “largest Ever” 65 lb striped bass caught in Missouri. Of course they are only talking about “Pole and Line” in “Mizzu”. 70, 80 and even 90 pounders are often caught in RI, CT and NJ, just to put the record straight. Well, maybe not 90 pounders so often, but at times. So, once again the USA population is basically m misinformed agains by poorly written newstroies.

Hillary can go as far left or right as she wants and nobody will hold it against her; and the media will praise her for being flexible. Hillary is also our national striped bass.

I think we should all protest the groups who protested the Circus forcing them into getting rid of elephants.

I don't know about you, I don’t eat things like rhubarb which is just mere micro inches away from its own poisonous leaves. If I want to flirt with death, I’m climbing El Capitan without ropes or giving a speech at A “Women for Hillary” gathering. Ouch!

The Answer:
Number one is Lawyer, where grads are finding fewer good opportunities and most are at lower salaries. Next is Professors who more and more are hanging PhD plaques in closets as Universities seek to cut costs for students aching from high tuitions. Third is formerly prestigious Stock broker which is not so genteel anymore and often traders have to explain, “Hey, I really am ethical”. It is also tougher to make big bucks as more potential customers try to do it themselves on computers. And then we have the once esteemed family doctor, many of whom have been injured by the glut of lawyers. In addition to mal practice prevention costs, the college debt is rising against declining income opportunities. Surgeons and specialists are still making it. Finally we have the Travel Agent. I think you can figure out this drying up of a once pretty decent career.

There is nothing quiet as spectacular as on a day in May at dawn roaming a wooded path with your dog, who is constantly exploring the noises and aromas that constantly tickle the senses. I just laugh at my friend yapping, scurrying, tail awagging as the early sun filters and twitters between the swaying leaves; I just smile at it all and inhale the magnificence of nature’s bounty.

Enjoy a cool day. Feel the wind in your hair.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Government starts in the Town Hall.

Today's Tids Issue 3,344
Opening Stuff:

The battle to reduce government spending generally comes down to reducing the size of industries built around the original idea. So basically all government spending could probably be reduced if lobbying in states and in Congress were eliminated. That’s about it in a nut shell. Lobbyists will always cry you’re hurting the poor, you’re beating up on kids or throw up some other smoke screen. The fact is that all government spending can be sliced without injuring the so-called disadvantaged.

Mahar Garden Center on Acquidneck Ave here has a some particularly beautiful, colorfully pleasant hanging baskets. At least to my taste. Just in case you want to perk up your estates.

I was thinking as I mused about all of the ramifications associated with Memorial day, that we should play the song Independence Day after every battle, and that includes the battle which should never be surrendered, protecting the power of the states to offset a an ever present threat of ceding all powers to a suffocating central Government. After all, the fight against a tyrannical central power was the basis for the formation of the USA – United “States” of America.

I always thought that Anne Meara was one of the funniest women ever. She and Elaine May always kept me laughing, and I’ll miss her. Good Actress too.

As the world gets weirder and weirder, the big question is, Does the US of A have the will to defend its principles? That should be the central message of the Presidential campaign. Period.

The Question:
Bonus day! How great is this… B1. In what state were Bonnie and Cycle shot? Can you name the nearby locale? They were riddled with bullets standing next to what kind of stolen car? B2. See if you can name the top three all time chess players. B3. In 1844 Sam Morse transmitted the first telegraph Message. What was it?

The Headlines:
--12 Missing After Giant texas Flooding; Olahoma Also ravaged By raging Waters.
--Lawyer Alleges That BB King Was Poisoned.
--Taliban getting More Aggressive As 26 Afghan Police And Soldiers Are Killed In new Raids.
--Greece Spain Struggles Have EuroStocks Sliding.
--Large Earthqualke Hits Tokyo.
--US rethinking Iraq Policy After new Gains By ISIS.
--Iraq Begins Counter Attacks.

In case you missed it, Hedge Funds favorite stock list is in (Rated by Number of Funds with Stock On tyheir Top Ten List): Number one is Activis followed by Apple, FaceBook, Valeant Pharm, MicroSoft, Direct TV, Citigroup, Time Warner Cable, Delta Airlines, Cheniere Energy and Yahoo!. Go crazy!

Over the weekend we remembered with love in our hearts the courage of all the military fighting to protect our freedoms. But, to me, one of the biggest battles should be waging is against an all powerful  central government encroaching upon States Rights. The sociologists say, “Diversity is the key to prosperity”. I say that the individuality of states is the foundation of strength. Now all we have to do is find some honest politicians to run the states. I seem to be repeating myself. The erosion of state independence must bother me.

It may seem cool and trendy to order egg white breakfasts. But basically in an attempt to reduce cholesterol you hare eating basically nothing. Egg whites have no taste, and more importantly, are devoid of vitamins anything of nutritional value. But, it does make you appear hip.

Many non-profits achieve that status by the CEO loading up on salary.

One good thing that could come from ISIS successfully creating their own state for all of like thinking is that when they all finally gather together in one place we can bomb the hell out of them. End of problem.

Did you ever see a cartoon on the editorial page and just break out laughing aloud? I did Saturday when I saw the picture of Kim Jong Un standing before a speaker’s dais, raised hand with smoking gun,  with the caption, “Snooze, you lose.” I must have a warped sense of humor.

Recipe Department:
The Tids Food editor seems to have been on an extended vacation. But he/she’s back in a yummy way. Here’s a snack that transcends all ethnic boundaries except vegans and Middle easterners.. As the perpetrator of this addiction asserts, “It is soooo good, I have trouble waiting until it cools.”You’ll be drooling over Bacon Brittle too. Ok, first butter a large non-stick baking sheet. In a saucepan mix in 1 cp Sugar, ½ cup corn syrup (“Lite” if you prefer) and 1/2Cp water. Stir over medium heat until sugar melts and water boils. Raise heat to high and stir til mixture hits 290 degrees per candy thermometer. Immediately remove from heat and stir in 1 tbs butter,2 tsps vanilla extract, 1 tsp baking soda, ½ cp chopped pecan and i/2 cp chopped, cooked bacon. (Be careful, as mixture will tend to foam.) When foam subsides, pour into large baking sheet, thin as possible (Do not use spatula). Let cool for 10 mins and break into pieces. How easy is that!

I likes the new TV series Wayward Pines Starring Matt Dillon as a Secret Service Agent “imprisoned“ in a strange little town with mysterious people.  It’s a Stepford Wives style drama, but a little darker. I only wonder how long the single premise can keep on going and hold interest. It appears to me that they have already revealed the mystery, and now it just becomes battle for survival. But, maybe there’s more. Regardless, I’ll be watching.

By the way, The Following had a great season finale, with significant plot promises that it will go on for at least another year.

The Answer:
B1. The Notorious banking robbing pair of lovers were shot to death near Bienville Parish La, while standing next to their stolen 1934 Deluxe Ford. Of course their last names were Parker and Barrow. B2. It is generally considered that the all time great chess players are at number 10 Deep Blue, (The IBM Computer), followed by Paul Morphy (US – 1837-1884), Mikail Botvinnik (Rus (1911-1995), Alexander Alekhine (Rus 1892-1946), Bobby Fischer (US 1943-2008), Jose Capablanca (Cuba 1888-1942), Wilhelm Steinitz (Austria 1836-1900), Emanuel Lasker (Germany 1868-1941), Anatoly Karpov (Rus 195-) and at number one – Garry Kasparov (Rus 1963-). I got Bobby Fisher. B3. I could have used this question for Monday’s Memorial Day message Tids – “What hath God Wrought” is what Samuel Morse said.

Maybe the entertainment world should get back the the popular Morality Palys of the 14-1500’s where they focused on Good winning over Evil. The origins of Theater was to deliver positive messages to the population.