September 12, 2010 archive
Sep 12 2010
Sep 12 2010
After losing the race to represent the Democrats in a special US Senate election, former Democratic politician (and arguably, institution as far as West Virginia is concerned) Ken Hechler has endorsed Jesse Johnson. Johnson is the nominee for US Senate of the Mountain Party, West Virginia’s affiliate of the Green Party.
Salon describes Hechler and his motivation for, at 95, running for Senate:
In his 95 years, Ken Hechler has recorded history from the front lines in World War II, debriefed Hitler’s top commanders before the Nuremberg Trials, advised Harry Truman, marched with Martin Luther King, published several books, been the subject of a documentary, and — somewhere between all of this — served nine terms in Congress and four as West Virginia’s secretary of state…
You say that you aren’t running anyone and that you want to use this race to raise awareness of mountaintop removal from strip mining. Why single out this issue?
I’m not really running for the Senate, I’m running to enable the people of West Virginia to register at the polls their opposition to this devastating practice, which hurts so many people in the valleys when they dump the rocks in the soil and all the things that they’re blasting out of the mountains into people’s front yards.
Hechler received about 17 percent of the vote in the primary. Now Johnson is the only candidate in the race who opposes mountaintop removal, a situation he was also in when he ran for governor in 2008.
The following video was posted on the front page of Johnson’s website:
Sep 12 2010
Even though many of us have Disaster Fatigue, for scores of hundreds of local Gulf Residents, this BP Crisis is very much their recurring daily Nightmare.
BP Oil Spill Compensation Fund Not Living Up to Promise
NewsInferno.com, News that matters! — Sep 10, 2010
In an interview with USA Today, Feinberg promised a better response times as his staff weeds through old claims. “I’ve inherited a huge number of claims that have never been processed that need to be processed, especially business claims,” he said. Such claims, he said, were placed on a “side track” by BP when it was handling the process.
According to USA Today, more than 46,000 people have filed claims since Feinberg took charge. By September 8, his staff had paid 10,252 claims for nearly $80 million. Most claims paid are small, with payouts of $5,000 or less, USA Today said.
So Ken Feinberg has inherited an extensive paper trail of bureaucratic procrastination;
While the Gulf Coast Residents, simply keep reaping the BP whirlwind …
Sep 12 2010
Many may want to catch this discussion, for a number of reasons, but one being it shows as others have that this country Needs an Inquiry into what went on during the previous administration. I want Indictments, but the country Has To Clear This Up one way or another as it was All Done In Our Names!!
They talk about a number of issues but Wilkerson tears into bush, cheney, condi, rumsfeld and others.
Sep 12 2010
My friend Diane Gee, the proprietor of The Wild Wild Left blog and producer and co-host of the weekly radio show by that name, had an inspirational idea the other day to start a “Burn the Ballot 2010” movement.
The idea was to protest against the so-called “two-party” system, which seems to only represent corporate interests and has walked away from doing right by The People. Wall Street versus Main Street. Special Interest versus the Common Good.
So the idea was on election day, instead of voting, a person was to abscond with her ballot from the polling place and go outside and in a safe and legal manner burn or otherwise destroy the ballot on camera and post the video where it can be seen by the most people.
The more people who know they are not alone in their feelings of frustration and disillusion about our completely corrupt and dysfunctional political system, the more who will be encouraged to do something about it.
But, lo and behold, there is the rub. Everyone wants to bitch and moan, but no one wants to do anything about the object of their frustration – their own disenfranchisement as a “people.”
Sep 12 2010
Former Chief of Staff to United States Secretary of State Colin Powell, Lawrence Wilkerson is now adjunct Professor of Government and Public Policy at the College of William & Mary where he teaches courses on US national security. Wilkerson is also Professorial Lecturer in the Honors Program of the “National Security Decision Making” senior seminar at George Washington University.
His last positions in government were as Secretary of State Colin Powell’s Chief of Staff (2002-05), Associate Director of the State Department’s Policy Planning staff under the directorship of Ambassador Richard N. Haass, and member of that staff responsible for East Asia and the Pacific, political-military and legislative affairs (2001-02).
Before serving at the State Department, Wilkerson served 31 years in the U.S. Army, including as Deputy Executive Officer to then-General Colin Powell when he commanded the U.S. Army Forces Command (1989), Special Assistant to General Powell when he was Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (1989-93), and as Director and Deputy Director of the U.S. Marine Corps War College at Quantico, Virginia (1993-97). Wilkerson retired from active service in 1997.
Here Wilkerson discusses with Real News Network’s Paul Jay what he terms “the culpability, the negligence of the [Bush] administration” over what happened at the World Trade Center on 9/11.
…about 30 minutes…
Real News Network – September 12, 2010
Lawrence Wilkerson, Colin Powell’s former Chief of Staff, on Bush Admin 9/11 responsibility
Sep 12 2010
My beautiful, beloved pet Noble Macaw, McGee, passed over into Bird Heaven on Sunday night, February 7th, 2010, at the age of about 20. I found him dead, at around 10:30 p. m., on the bottom of his cage. It was very much of a shock, which has gradually been wearing off, with time, and a new pet bird, about who I’ve written below, as an update and sort of continuation with my love and experience with exotic birds. So saying, I’ve decided to start off by writing a memoir to my Noble Macaw, McGee. Here goes:
I had been wanting a pet bird for quite a long time. After doing some research and looking in various pet stores, we hit upon one in Boston’s Back Bay area called Back Bay Aquarium & Pet Shop, which is no longer in business. After looking at some Noble Macaws, I decided I wanted a Noble Macaw as a pet. After going on vacation for a couple of weeks, I picked out one of the young, green macaws, with a blonde beak, red under the wings, and olive yellow underneath closer to the body. Accompanied by my parents, I picked out the bird, selected a cage, reserved the bird and, then my parents and I went to lunch at Chang-Sho, a popular Chinese restaurant in Cambridge’s Porter Square. All during lunch, we kept throwing out names for the bird, and my mother finally asked me “What’s the name that Ian (my younger brother) constantly calls you out of affection?” “McGee”, I replied. So, the name stuck, and we all agreed that the name “McGee” was a good name for the bird.
The next day, Sunday, was a rainy, cold day, and I picked up McGee from the Pet Shop. The pet shop manager put McGee in a cardboard carrier, and I drove him home and put him in his cage, gave him food and water, and allowed him to become acclimated to me and his new surroundings. McGee squawked happily, and enjoyed himself. However, the euphoria was relatively short-lived, when a now ex- neighbor who worked nights and slept during the day, complained about the noise. The guy who lived with her was more amiable, and said that he’d prefer not to be woken up before 7:30 a. m. by McGee’s noise, so I purchased a dark brown cover for the bird’s cage, and made a point of closing my Venetian blinds with the slats facing outward to keep the early-morning sun out of the apartment. It worked, and that part of the problem was solved. Since I then had a fulltime job, I ended up confining McGee to my studio, which was an OK compromise. At the manager’s suggestion, I took him up to my loft to meet McGee, who immediately won him over.
Sep 12 2010
Today, I will be posting something different; I’ll be going back to Aziza, but here is the longer essay on her that I promised to write about.
This is a photograph of Aziza, where she looks like she’s doing a dance. She’s in one of her favorite poses, on her favorite outside-her-cage height and place:
Here’s yet another photo of Aziza,
playing in her cage, looking curiously down at something while she’s on her bong rope swing, which is a favorite inside-her-cage perch of hers.
Here’s another more exuberant photo of Aziza.
She certainly reveals her beauty, exuberance and gracefulness when she’s in that position. It’s great!
This is a photo of Aziza perched on my forearm/hand. You now have a close-up view of her, and you can see her beauty on a somewhat larger scale.
Here’s yet another photo of Aziza, in one of her most pensive modes:
This photo, too, reveals how beautiful she really is! One of my favorite photos of Aziza.Now that I have presented afew (albeit familiar) pictures of Aziza, many of them taken when she was even younger than she is right now, I will proceed with the essay itself.
After the unfortunate passing of my (almost) 20-year-old Noble Macaw, McGee in early February of this year due to unknown and natural causes, I knew in my heart that I wanted another exotic bird. Yet, going out and getting another bird right away didn’t make sense. I needed time to mourn and do research as to what kind of bird that I wanted. It was at about ten-thirty on a Sunday night, when I went to cover McGee’s cage. Seeing McGee lying still on the bottom of his cage, I called his name, and caressed him, hoping to wake him up. There was no response forthcoming, so I immediately knew the worst; McGee had passed over the pet rainbow to bird heaven. Not thinking what to do, I wrapped his little body in two coats of foil, put it in two plastic bags, put it in my kitchen trashcan which was full of shredded old documents, and then put the whole trash bag out in the dumpster. Probably not the best thing to do, but, being in shock, I was just thinking on my feet, so to speak. The next morning, I called my sister and told her the sad news, and then I got a call from my brother a few minutes later, after my sister had called him and given him a message. I received much condolences from my family, friends and some of my neighbors who I told. I knew that I wouldn’t be getting another bird until the spring, and, although it was a fairly short time, I began to feel the emotional pain of not having a pet to greet me when I walked in the door, and I often found myself looking over at McGee’s old cage in the corner of the living room, expecting him to be there, but finding an empty cage instead.
A week later was my birthday, and one of my birthday presents was a couple of books about parrots; One was called Parrots for Dummies, and the other was a complete book on African Greys, because I was leaning towards getting an African Grey Parrot. I did much research on African Greys and other parrots both on and offline. I asked around about a reputable pet store in our area, talking to the veterinarian that I’d taken McGee to, a couple of her assistants, and a neighbor who’d purchased a Red-Lored Amazon at that same place ten years before. All roads pointed to a pet store down in East Walpole, MA, called Bird and Reptile Connection. After I explained about the passing of my Noble Macaw, I went down and visited the place, and looked at a not-quite-a year-old Goffins Cockatoo, which is one of the smaller cockatoos. It was a beautiful bird–all white with a sort of orangey-pink coral color underneath. The Goffins and I got along splendidly, but after doing much on and offline research, I decided against getting the Goffins cockatoo, and I concentrated on the African Grey instead. I asked about the baby Timneh African Greys that were due to arrive in April, which were a little cheaper than the Congo African Greys and were reputed to be somewhat more easygoing. I decided to look at the Timneh, being set on that. I bided my time, doing as much research as I could, on the Greys, housing for them, care, and food for them. I kept in touch with the people at Bird and Reptile Connection via telephone and email. April finally came.
Sep 12 2010
Negative feelings certainly has a victim. That victim is he or she who holds them in an unreasonable manner. This is not a “9/11” post, but any similarities might well be noted.
I have written on the Big Orange for a very long time, sometimes with better and sometimes with poorer results. Those of you who have read my posts will know that, several years ago, I was accused of a heinous crime, and was innocent of it.
Here is what happened Tuesday past. I thing that it might be of interest to people.