Monday, November 30, 2009

Four


Remember
the anthem
from the late 1960's?

"Four Dead In O-HI-O"
following
the assassination
of four college students
at Kent State
by the Ohio National Guard.

Now it is
"Four Dead
In Washington."

Four
Pierce County Sheriff's Deputies
in a coffee shop
just outside
the main gate
of McCord Air Force Base
in Lakewood, Washington.

Minding
their own
business.

Working
on their
computers.

Drinking coffee.

They were
assassinated too.

Assassinated
by a former Arkansas convict
whose sentence
was commuted
by then
Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee.

Remember
Willy Horton?

Remember
how that was
the demise
of the presidential run
of Mike Dukakis?

That was
an attack
by the right wing
against a liberal Democrat.

I wonder
if the left wing
will make this
an issue against
Mike Huckabee?

Regardless,
let's keep
the friends and families
of the dead officers
in our hearts and prayers.

Every police officer
and everyone
in the military
expects to die
every day.

The lucky ones
don't.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Viagra


The politics
in the election
in Uraguay
have reached
a new low
or high
if you are
looking for
comedy relief.

One opponent
is attacking
the other candidate's age
and indicating
that he needed
to use Viagra.

"When
centre-right
former president
Jorge Battle
suggested
that the
Tupamaros movement
had links
to a recently
uncovered
weapons cache,

Mujica gave
a characteristically
flamboyant response.

I'm going to
send him a bottle of Viagra
so he can amuse himself
with more useful things
than saying this kind of crap,"
said Mujica,
who also
goes by the nickname "Pepe."

Interesting response
as if he would actually
use the Viagra
if he were not
running for election.

Actually
using the Viagra
might help him
and other politicians
do what they do
to the people
more effectively.

Better politics
through chemistry.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Golf


I got this from a newspaper in Australia this morning so it might be old or not true. Apparently Tiger Woods was having an affair with a "hostess" from New York and this occurred in Australia. The word is that Mrs. Wood found out and hit Tiger in the head with a golf club and then she chased him into his car continuing to beat on him and his car. He backed over a fire hydrant and into a tree and then she broke out the window of the car to "rescue" him or maybe try a 9 iron on his face. Time will tell.

A word to the wise. If you play golf and have an affair you need to hide your clubs from your wife.

Or if you are chef you need to hide your knives.

Or if you are a cop you need to hide your guns.

I just wonder if Mrs. Woods put a tee in his mouth and then used a driver to hit the ball/head.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Black


Today is commonly known as Black Friday.

I always thought that the black part was about the people who were killed and injured and crushed as they were thrown to the ground at the entrance to department stores in the rush to get in for the bargains.

Not true.

A commentator this morning said it was because it was an opportunity for the retailers to go into the black financially as compared to being in the hole commonly known as red.

I guess this is why we learned colors in kindergarten.

I also learned that today is not the busiest day of the year for shopping.

That is actually Christmas eve day when sales are the strongest.

I had a friend many years ago who owned a gift shop.

He told me once that he did 90% of his annual sales in the month of December so that left the other eleven months to sell the other 10%.

Theoretically he could have closed his doors for eleven months and only lost 10% of his income.

At one time we had two year-round Christmas stores in the county where they only sold Christmas items every day of the year.

I guess with our tourist economy that works and it also fits with our six months of snow.

I think the bears have it right.

This is the very best time of the year to crawl into a cave and take a snooze.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Food


Dr. John Torres
on Denver's Channel 9 News yesterday
that the average person
will gain from seven to twelve pounds today
just from Thanksgiving dinner.

Go to the store
and pick up
a twelve pound turkey
to get an idea
of what
twelve pounds
feels like.

Not to worry though
because it is temporary.

It comes
from excessive salt
and other things
that cause you
to retain water
and other things
that sometimes weigh a lot
like pie and mashed potatoes.

I remember
the famous quote,
"Eat, drink and be merry
for tomorrow we shall die."

Great thought.

Of course
if you believe
the recent movie,
"2012" then to hell with it
and eat and drink
whatever you want
because we are all
going to die anyway.

Matter of fact,
we are all going to die
anyway.

Some of you
sooner than later.

Exercise helps
to lengthen
your life span.

The first exercise
is the "Table Push" where,
during the meal,
you put both hands
on the edge of the table
and you push away
thereby making
the food
harder to reach.

Just make sure
that the Pumpkin
or Pecan pie
is not within reach
after the push.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Wednesday


The day before Thanksgiving
always reminds me
of our family tradition
that existed
for many years.

I would always work
at the Sheriff's Office
until around five
on the Wednesday
before Thanksgiving.

I would go home
and load the family
into the car
and head east
toward Iowa
and my home in Rockwell City.

On a good day
it would take
twelve hours
to drive
which meant that,
after being up all day,
I would,
without benefit
of any sleep,
drive the 750 miles
to Iowa
to enjoy
Thanksgiving dinner
with my parents
and my sister.

The two things
that I remember
most clearly
is the hundreds
of other cars
from Colorado
on the highway
heading east
at the very same time.

It was an exodus
from Colorado
to Nebraska, Iowa, Minnesota and Illinois
and then back again on Sunday.

The other thing
was that terrible time
right before sunrise
when I would fall asleep
driving off the side
of Interstate 80
somewhere near
Lincoln, Nebraska.

How foolish I was
in my youth.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Desires


60 Minutes
on Sunday
had a feature
about the cost
of keeping
terminal patients
alive.

Always
a dilemma.

Always
a moral
and ethical conflict.

The problem is
that it costs
up to $10,000 a day
just to have
a person
live for a
couple
more days.

It does not
take long
at that rate
to eat up
all of the assets
of the patient
and the family.

The family always
says
keep them alive.

The patient
normally agrees
to not appear
to have given up hope
for living
in favor
of the family wishes.

I already
have prepared
orders
to not
do anything
if the prognosis
is bleak.

I have a permanent
"Do not resuscitate" order
to save my assets
and my family
from further damage.

The most striking thing
about the
60 Minutes piece
is that
the patients they featured
were all younger than I.

My goodness.

I guess
quitting smoking
over twenty years ago
and running
all those miles
early
every morning
have paid off.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Ethereal


I know
of several people
who are
heads of
major corporations
and big industry
who never
graduated
from high school
or attended college.

They all have
severe learning disabilities
and some
can't even read or write.

But that
not withstanding
they are brilliant.

They are all
in the genius category.

They all
have the ability
to see into the future
and to come up
with great ideas.

For the most part
they are realists
and very down to earth.

They are not artists
or poets living
in a ethereal place.

They can
wrap their arms
around the here and now
and take that
into the future.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Health


I always thought
that the British Parliament
was the silliest
elected body
on this planet.

I especially
like watching
"Prime Minister's Questions"
on CSPAN
as a form
of comedy relief.

So very funny
and so very stupid.

Monty Python
in real life.

Yesterday
the comic relief
came to
the United States Senate
as the Republican minority
commented on why
the procedural question
to continue the discussion
of the Health Care Bill
was being debated.

It was as if
aliens had landed
and inhabited the bodies
of some Senators
and took over
their hearts
and their minds
to act
incredibly
stupid in front
of the entire nation.

I wonder
if they ever thought
that someone
might be watching?

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Purple


"Purple Mountains Majesty"
has never
had more
relevance
than
this morning
as the sun
begins
to break
over
the Continental Divide.

Tinged
in a magnificent
pink
the day begins here
at 9600 feet
and will remain
that high
and beautiful
all day long.

Let us rejoice.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Food


Heard a couple of great presentations this week about Archer, Daniels, Midland and Cargill this week.

They are the two top agricultural product producers in the world.

Depending on which side of the dinner table that you are sitting you either love them or hate them.

I am not sure that they are to blame for much as I think people willingly buy and consume their products.

No one has a gun pointed at their head.

About the same time researchers published data that indicated that the mummy's in Egypt had heart disease without the benefit of McDonald's or smoking cigarettes.

They were also able to compare other mummy's in the same grave, family members, and discovered that they all had the same heart disease.

It is a family affliction not caused from diet or lack of exercise.

You are fat and have heart disease because you inherited your bad genes from your folks.

You could be a vegan and spend 24 hours in the gym and still die from a bad heart.

And then even later in the week they published data that indicated that over half of us will be deemed to be obese by 2015.

There are several states that contain the greatest number of obese people.

I will not publish the names of those states to prevent lots of guilt from occurring.

You can look in up yourself but it is a wonder that the bottom half of the country does not fall off into the Gulf of Mexico.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Thankful


Christmas
has always been
a bad time of the year for me.

I think
that it has
something to do
with my childhood.

False expectations.

Disappointment.

Hope beyond hope
that always failed.

Depressing.

Thanksgiving
has always
been better.

No cards.

No gifts.

Just being
with family
and friends
for some good fellowship
and good food.

For many years
I personally cooked
Thanksgiving dinner
for as many
as 80 people
in my home.

The diners
were the local workers
at the grocery store
down the street,
people from my church
and yes,
my friends and family.

Many of the people
I did not know.

Many did not work
at the store
or go to my church.

Many were people
who just needed
a place to go
on Thanksgiving.

I still run into
some of the people
on the street
and they will
remind me
that I fed them
Thanksgiving dinner
one year.

I do not
remember them
or their face
or their name
but they remember
the meal.

I would always start
about four in the morning
and continue serving
until eight or nine
at night.

The truly remarkable thing
was that I seldom ate.

I seldom
sat down.

Straight through
until everyone was fed.

As time went by
the tradition ended.

As time went by
we went
to a local buffet
in a hotel.

Still nice
but not the same.

Now
the immediate family
gathers in my wife's room
in the nursing home
and we eat take out
from the local grocery store.

It is not the same.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

News


Something is up.

Hillary is
in Afghanistan
talking to
General McChrystal.

Obama is
in China
and has commented
that a decision
on Afghanistan
is near.

No mention
of Karzai.

There was
another comment
from Washington
that we are
considering
not sending money
to the corrupt
Karzai regime
and sending it instead
to the regional
tribal governments
who really control
the country.

My gut feeling is
that Hillary
is telling
the general
what has been
decided.

Let's hope
that Hillary,
Obama and
McChrystal
all realize
what happened
to President Johnson
when he decided
to radically increase
the force in Viet Nam.

50,000
American boys and girls
were killed
and we still lost
a very unpopular war
and Johnson
literally
stepped down.

Let's hope
they remember
history.

Let's hope
we don't
repeat history.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Conspiracy


I don't know
if I should laugh
at conspiracy theorists
or feel sorry for them.

I always
think about
the fear of,
"Things that go bump in the night."

It did not happen
and it will not happen.

Fear is
the true
problem.

Either you are fearful
or you are not.

It is hard
to sleep
if you are.

I sleep
like a baby.

I sleep

like a rock.

Gold
is a
terrible
investment.

Just check
the history
of the
price of gold.

The monetary standard
in the entire world
is the American dollar.

Every other currency
is measured against
the dollar.

The value
fluctuates
as it does
with every
other currency.

If people
are telling you
to invest in gold
or to invest
in the value
of the Euro
or the Yen
they are not
telling you the truth.

The only people
who make money
on those deals
are the people
selling those deals
and not you or I.

Sleep well
and don't lay awake
worrying about
things that
go bump in the night
or what someone
told you
on an infomercial
on late night TV.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Money


I read this morning
that General Motors
had lost
over $1.2 billion
since coming out of bankruptcy
and they called it a good thing.

That it was better
than they thought
it would be.

It would not be
such a big deal
if it were not
my money.

Since when
is losing
$1.2 billion
a good thing?

"DETROIT — General Motors Co. says it lost $1.2 billion from the time it left bankruptcy protection through Sept. 30, far better than it has reported in previous quarters and a sign that the auto giant is starting to turn around its business."

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Smells


Fort Dodge, Iowa
was never a big city.

It was and remains
a smaller community
in the grand scheme of things
but is huge
if you are from Rockwell City
or Yetter
or Somers.

It is just big enough
to have buildings
over four stories high
in the downtown area
that traps
the heat
and smells
of summer.

The smell of diesel fuel
from the trucks
and buses
and the smell
of people
and food.

When I first moved
to New York City
in 1960
I was struck by the fact
that New York City
smelled like Fort Dodge
and not my home town
of Rockwell City.

It was
the smell
of diesel,
the people
and the food f
rom the street.

Nanci Griffith
wrote a song
a few years ago
about Woolworth's,
"Love at the Five and Dime." (Listen)

She said
that they all
smelled the same
whether they were
in Texas or London.

She referred to it
as the smell of popcorn
and bubble gum
that is stuck on your shoe.

Some things last forever.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Risk


As I grow older
I am less prone
to taking risks.

Just a few years ago
I commuted to Denver
and the Capitol
every day
in rain, sleet and snow.

No more
he says.

No more risks.

No more
skidding my way
to and from Denver.

I will stay
by the fire.

This morning
I was reminded
of the great lyric
from the song
"September Song."

It tells exactly
my frame of mind
this morning
as I watch
the heavy snow
land on my front lawn
for the first time
this year.


"Oh, the days
dwindle down
to a precious few
September, November."

So as the days of 2009
dwindle down
to a precious few
I will embrace
each one
from the
warmth and sanctuary
of my
hearth and home.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Master


I am a master
in communications
according to
my graduate degree.

It lets me
be a professor.

But I have done
a lot more
in my life.

I listen
to the poets
and writer's
pontificate
about their experience
and there are
a couple of
common denominators.

One is
driving a taxi
in New York City.

I did that
back in the 1960s.

An interesting
and dangerous job.

Met a lot
of interesting
people.

The other one
is being a bartender.

I did that
on West Colfax
in Denver
in the 1970s
during that period
when I was
almost homeless
and was working
three jobs
just to pay
my bills.

The job was fun
but the customers
were less interesting.

Nothing to write about.

Most people
who hang out
in bars
do not
have a story.

They do not
have a life.

They are
not interesting.

They work
and drink
and that is it.

Not a good story
in the entire pack.

When I tell my story
most people
do not believe me.

To tell the truth
my story is the truth
of many things
shoved into
a lot of life
in many places
doing many things.

I guess
I could lie
and not tell the truth.

Can't do that.

I will leave that
to others
whose stories
are a lie
and made up
of made up stories.

Fiction.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Anticipation


The forecast
for the next few days
is calling for snow
on Friday and Saturday
in the Denver area.

Not sure
what it is
for Summit County.

It is November 12
and there is not
a drop of snow
on the ground
anywhere.

As of today
the Breckenridge ski area
is opening
making it
the sixth
to be open
in the state.

Loveland Basin,
Arapahoe Basin,
Keystone,
Copper Mountain
and Wolf Creek
are open according to
the press reports.

I can see snow
above 12,000 feet
on the mountains
around my house
and all of the
ski areas make
man-made snow.

But nothing
on the ground
where I live.

Good thing
I don't want to ski
in my front yard.

It is
about
the anticipation.

My students
have memorized
every weather report
from anywhere
in the world
and can s
pout the
potential snowfalls.

All of the old tales
about woolly caterpillars
and moss on the trees
and the size of the elk antlers prevail.

Even with all of the forecasts
and rumors of snow,
creating huge anticipation
it is still 65 degrees
at my house
right now.

Not 32.

Not below freezing.

Bright and sunny
and a great day
to ride my bike
but probably not ski.

But it is
about
the anticipation.

It is about
the what if?

It is about
all of the young people
dreaming dreams
of a major dump
over the weekend.

Let's hope so.

We could
end the
anticipation.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Veteran's


I spent four years
in the military
from 1960 to 1964
during
the Viet Nam era
and am also
a disabled American veteran.

I always smile
and get goose bumps
when someone says to me
"Welcome home"
and "Thank you for your service."

I enlisted
almost fifty years ago
so you would think
that I would get over it.

I would deal with it.

But I am still impacted.

Emotionally moved.

When the men and women
of my father's generation
who served in World War Two
speak or are interviewed
I sometimes start to cry.

Not for myself
but for their sacrifice.

I cried yesterday
as President Obama
spoke at Fort Hood
about the sacrifice
of the victims
of the shooting.

Unless you have
"been there, done that"
you probably do not understand.

I hate war.

I hate death.

I have never supported
our efforts
in Viet Nam,
Iraq or Afghanistan.

But I have always
supported
the women and men
who serve
regardless
of the stupid behavior
and decisions
made by politicians.

So
for my fellow veterans
on this Veteran's Day,
Welcome home
and thank you
for your service.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Hate


I listened
to an interview
this morning
on the Bob Edwards Show
with Barbara Kingsolver
about her new book,
"The Lacuna."

It is a fictional account
of the period of time
in the twentieth century
and the red scare
in the United States.

It is about how hate
takes over
the minds and hearts
of people
and causes them
to act irrationally.

Barbara Kingsolver
is also famous
for writing
the "Poisonwood Bible"
a few years ago.

And then
Garrison Keillor
this morning
in "A Writer's Almanac "
had a few references
about book burning
in the United States
up to and including
the burning of Harry Potter
books by several churches
in the very recent past.

Hate is
a four letter word.

Hate is not
a family value.

I support the right
for anyone
to ban
any book
from their home.

That is
a basic
American principle.

If I did not support that
then I would be
in favor
of government intervention
in people's personal lives.

I do not
agree with that
and would actively
support the right
of a mother or father
to censor things
in their own home.

But love
is also a
four letter word.

Love is
a family value.

There needs
to be a balance.

Children need
to grow up
knowing love
and that
they are loved.

Children do not
need to grow up
knowing that
it is OK to hate.

"Teach your children well."

Monday, November 9, 2009

Cool


I am almost
70 years old and yet
I still spend
a disproportionate
amount of time
reading, writing and studying
as if
I will be around
to use it
at some point
in the future.

Let's hope so.

I need a break
and sometimes
have to force myself
to get out
from in front
of my two computers
and go outside.

To breathe.

To look
at the
beautiful mountains.

To recenter myself.

This time of year
it is
especially delicious.

I can walk for hours
in any direction
and experience
new stuff,
new sights
even though
I have lived in Colorado
for 40 years.

It is intoxicating.

To breathe
the sharply cold fresh air
that makes my lungs
hurt with pleasure.

To make my eyes squint
to make out the outline
of a deer
or elk
or a bear
in the distance.

Sweet.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Time


We all know
that time
is relative.

Relative
to many things
but still relative.

Every six months
when we go
from Daylight Savings Time
to Standard Time
it creates
a flurry of dissent.

People
either hate it
or they want it
to occur
at a different time.

I have often thought
that we should do away
with it
but remain on
Daylight Savings Time
year round.

That way
we would get
the alleged benefits
of Daylight Savings Time
but without the adjustment
every six months.

I do not
have a clock
in my bedroom.

The light
in most clocks
keeps me awake.

The ticking
of other clocks
keep me awake.

So what I do
in the middle of the night
is look
toward the eastern horizon
and try to guess
what time it is
during the night.

That works
most of the time
but during the winter
the lights
from the snow making
at the Keystone Resort
can mimic
the sun coming up.

Add that
to the change in time
and I end up
spending a portion
of every night
staring
at the ceiling
in my bedroom.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Words


Counterintuitive
is one of my
most favorite words.

I use it
when I know
that someone
I am talking to
does not have a clue
as to what I am saying.

Counterintuitive
actually means
that it flies in
the face of reason
or simply put it
means it does not
make sense.

Another one
is
off-putting.

Some people
are just naturally
offputting.

They,
in effect,
put you off.

You sense
that they are a jerk
and hence
they are off-putting.

Incredulous
is a great word.

No one
ever understands
that one.

It means
that it does not
have any credibility.

It is not true.

People are skeptical
about what is being said.

In other words,
it is stupid.

Not a word
but a phrase
that I use
at special times during the day
is cognitive dissonance.

It is
a communications term
that describes
what happens
when you get
too many
conflicting messages
all at the same time.

Cognition
is how our minds
put things together
and dissonance
is what I call
noise.

The greater the conflict,
the more messages
that do not fit,
create noise
so we don't understand
what is being said.

The last one
that I truly love is
over talking.

I see and hear this
several times a day.

It is
where people
feel compelled
to talk
even when
other people are talking.

It can
also be referred to
as "the person who talks the most,
the loudest
and the longest wins" theory.

I like to say
that talking
is like
playing tennis.

The ball
(the conversation)
moves
back and forth
across the court.

When the ball
is on your side
of the net
you talk
and then
you give it up
to the other side
as the ball
moves
to the other side
of the court.

Most of these words
can be used
to describe
the talking heads
and how poorly
they are
at communicating.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Texas


I was in class
yesterday afternoon
when a news alert
on my computer
from CNN
then from the New York Times
announced
that there had been
a shooting in Texas
resulting in multiple deaths.

I think
that I got a blank stare
on my face
and was thinking,
"Not again."

A three star
Lieutenant General,
the base commander
announced
that there were
three shooters
and one was dead
along with
the civilian police officer
who had killed him.

Several hours later
the same General
announced
that the shooter
was alive,
there was one shooter
and the civilian police officer
was still alive.

After the shock
of the shooting
we have the shock
that the General
in charge of the base
did not know
what was going on.

I have the feeling
that it was
part of
damage control.

How to lessen
the shock
of the event.

Let's say
there were
three shooters
and that
the main shooter
was dead along
with the officer
who killed the shooter
all designed
to make
everyone
feel good
even though
it was not true.

The real issue
remains
the dead soldiers,
their families
and the wounded.

Let's keep them
in our hearts
and prayers.

Let's also ask
that the military leadership
closely examine
their comments
and procedures
after this terrible event.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Economy


An interesting number
to come
out of the recent
off-year elections
in New Jersey,
New York, Virginia
and California.

The number one issue
on the minds
of the voters
in the exit polling
was the economy.

Number four
was health care reform.

All we hear
is that the economy
is recovering
and that we need
to reform health care.

That is what
we hear
but that is not reality.

Reality is that
CITI went under
over the weekend.

Hundreds of thousands
of Americans
still do not have jobs.

They can't
feed their children
or make their house payment.

The automobile industry
is still flopping and diving.

Things are not well
in Whoville
and our politicians
in both parties
have yet to realize
the scope of the problem.

They need
to focus
on the real issue
and not the issue
that they would rather consider.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Wrong


Some people
adamantly feel
that if
you do not
agree with them
you are automatically
wrong
about everything.

As a recovering politician
I encounter this
on an
almost
daily basis.

I will
run into people
on the street
or in the store
and they will exclaim
that they
do not like me.

When I ask why
they will bring up
an article or essay
that I wrote in 1987
that they did not like.

I shake my head
in disbelief.

How,
in this day and age
and in this very liberal,
progressive community,
that people like that
are still walking the streets.

I encourage
dissent and disagreement
and welcome
criticism
but to base
an opinion
on one thing
written twenty years ago
is beyond
my imagination.

It only reinforces
my reasoning
as to why many people
around the world
do not like Americans.

It is
because,
at times,
our cognitive ablilty
is faulty.

We just
very plainly
do not
make sense.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Election


Today is election day in the United States. Not sure if that is true in some other places. The voters in Breckenridge will be able to vote today on decriminalization of marijuana in the town. What that means is that the police will be directed not to enforce any marijuana laws for possession of less than an ounce by persons over the age of 18. No summons, no ticket, no fine, no punishment. The same law has been passed in Denver twice but the police there continue to refuse to adhere to the will of the people and still arrest or cite persons for possession of less than an ounce. Their rationale is that it is still illegal under state and federal law and they are sworn to uphold those laws regardless. I think their attitude is just plain stupid and that is coming from someone who was a police officer most of his life.

The other elections that are hot here in the high country are far away. The right wing conservatives are doing a full frontal assault on President Obama and are attacking any and all liberal candidates. The most fascinating one is the race for Congress in Watertown, New York where the Democrat has dropped out of the race to support the Republican and the Republican is being opposed by the Republican party in favor of the ultra right wing conservative candidate who is also supported by Newt Gingrich and Sarah Palin.

Politics do make strange bedfellows but who would want to get into bed with those creepy, crawly people?

Monday, November 2, 2009

Karzai


With the only opponent to Karzai in Afghanistan dropping out of the race the decision has been effectively made for President Obama on what to do with the war.

The President needs to decide to pull out of Afghanistan and not let one more American boy or girl die in defense of what has become a dictatorship.

I do not blame Abdullah Abdullah one bit for deciding to withdraw from the race.

It was a no win situation.

Karzai had refused to make the changes needed for a fair election.

The United Nations elections personnel were attacked recently and many people died.

Alqueda and the Taliban had cranked up the volume to the point where there were attacks daily throughout the country.

Afghanistan is not a country.

Afghanistan is a large group of tribal nations without any central leadership.

The mainstay of the economy is heroin production.

In most of the tribal groups the leading rulers are members of the Taliban.

No country has ever been able to win a war in that region and many have tried including the former Soviet Union who pulled out many years ago when it became unwinnable.

We need to pull out and regroup with a plan that is effective.

I have always liked the idea of having large military bases all over the world with response teams or groups that could act as a world police force.

Go in and take care of business and then leave.

To hell with this nation building stuff.

To try to win the hearts and minds of the people is crazy.

It has not worked in Iraq and it will never work in Afghanistan.

It is not our role to supply our children as cannon fodder.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Eggs


It comes
down to eggs.

Not having
enough eggs.

Enough eggs
to incubate
H1N1 virus
to make enough
vaccine
for the 300 million
men, women and children
in the United States.

Apparently the technology
for the manufacture of the virus
and vaccine
is over 50 years old
and moves very slowly as many
50 year old things move.

The saving grace
in this whole thing
is that most of the people
coming down with the disease
are under 20 years old.

Boys and girls
who have not built up
a natural resistance
the way us old folks have.

I remember
getting the Hong Kong flu
in 1958
and thought
that I had died.

I guess
that is some comfort
knowing now
that we do not
have enough eggs.