Observing Life Through Polarized Glasses

Peoples TempleI’ve seen it before. I watched it all unfold on television in 1978, when the Rev. Jim Jones relieved himself and 900 of his faithful followers, along with my congressman, Leo Ryan, of this earthly life, drinking cyanide laced Kool-Aid in the jungles of Guiana. (Ryan was shot to… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
FEBRUARY 9, 2011 7:35AM

Reagan at 100: My Version



Some  Background

In May of 1969, I was 25 years old and living in a duplex just a few miles south of San Francisco. Bobby Kennedy and Dr. King were dead not a year. The anti-war movement was taking hold like no one could have… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
FEBRUARY 4, 2011 7:29AM

The Slow, Relentless Disintegration of Glenn Beck

BeckOnce Fox New's biggest ratings getter, Glenn Beck, like a car  on its last few gallons of gasoline, may have reached the end of the line. As of this past January, his ratings suffered a 39% drop, year to year, averaging a paltry 1.8 million daily viewers last

Read full post »
Editor’s Pick
FEBRUARY 1, 2011 11:39AM

Is Democracy Breaking Out in the Middle East?

EGYPTIAN FLAGFor days now, we’ve seen images of the rallies in Cairo’s famed Tahrir Square. Today, a million Egyptians from all walks of life are turning out to demand an end to the Mubarak autocracy and free elections to form a new “people powered” government.

Certainly, all… Read full post »


This woman, as any kind of political figure, is toast. Her poll numbers are falling faster than a lead sinker. What is interesting is that Congressowman Michele Bachmann (R-MN), who seems to believe there’s enough of a following that she can make a run at the GOP nomination,Read full post »

JANUARY 28, 2011 1:53PM

Dear Tea Party Guy...

Dear Tea Party Guy,

It’s time to put up or shut up.

You’re always yakking about “taking your Constitution back.” And your mouthpieces, like Beck and Palin and Bachmann and Limbaugh and Ailes and Angle and Savage, and God knows how many other highly paid flacks are… Read full post »

JANUARY 28, 2011 11:36AM

The Rules of the Game

VENUSI was intrigued by meggacuppiecake's and Linda Seccaspina's posts  in which they wrote  about "roles" in initiating relationships among males and females and the various devices women employ in making themselves attractive. 

Both writers, in a few words here, dispense with th… Read full post »

JANUARY 27, 2011 7:05AM

Two-tiered Justice Is Becoming the Norm

Note to the reader: This is a repost of a piece I wrote in late January for OS, but took down for lack of apparent interest. One of my regular readers suggested I repost it as she felt that it was something that should have been said. I… Read full post »
JANUARY 24, 2011 1:21PM

The Coming Republican Meat Cleaver....

MEAT CLEAVERThe following was taken from my "Don't Lose" file and given to me some some  liberal friend - I've long forgotten who - some years ago. 

There isn't a nickel's worth of difference between the Democrats or the Republicans. Now Boehner, McConnell, Kantor & Co.  shout at us t… Read full post »

JANUARY 17, 2011 11:21AM

Of Douche Bags and Donuts


I enjoy stand-up comedy. Comedy, at least the kind of comedy we see these days, seems to turn on pointing out the silliness of our culture: you know, pointing out the inconsistencies, the hypocrisy, the downright goofiness of some of the cultural, religious, and political icons a lot of… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
JANUARY 12, 2011 10:11AM

Tucson Will Change Nothing


Once again, the national breast beating continues uninterrupted after Americans read with horror about the actions of a deranged monster who decided to convert his rage into murder and mayhem. We again ask the same old questions: What is wrong with us? Why are we such a violent people? What ca… Read full post »

E913358-Scalia,-Antonin-2010---2In a fascinating article in California Lawyer Magazine, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, he who regularly provides the most questions (as well as comic relief) during oral arguments before his court, argued, essentially, that “if it isn’t in the Constitution, it isn’t l… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
DECEMBER 29, 2010 2:13PM

The Chinese Repudiate Reaganomics

ChinaNoteIn an almost astonishing departure from no-holds-barred capitalism, China has discovered that if they are to continue their 30 year, double digit economic growth they must have to have consumers other then foreign customers for their exports: consumers  like their own people.

 With… Read full post »

DECEMBER 28, 2010 11:54AM

Obama: The First Two Years

There's no doubt the President hit a grand slam in the last 26 days of the 111th Congress. Obama's ratings have spiked significantly since being "shellacked" in the midterms. But since taking office in 2009, Obama has not been exactly sitting on his hands. 

Herewith is a list of notable  ac… Read full post »

DECEMBER 28, 2010 9:28AM

The Bear

On the far side of a summer river,

High up a steep bank covered

With fir and hemlock and spruce,


I heard the sound of breaking twigs

Interrupting the gentle air

Made visible to my ears.


A black bear… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
DECEMBER 21, 2010 12:39PM

The Turnidges and Me: Staring at the Death Penalty

blog post photo

     Like most Oregonians, I suppose, I’ve been following the trial of the Turnidges, father and son, with a bit more than ordinary interest. I say more than ordinary because I was one of 625  Marion County citizens who were summoned to serve on
Read full post »
DECEMBER 17, 2010 12:17PM

The Problem with the Tea Party and the GOP

teafaceIf you accept that that Tea Party (which is not a legitimate political party but an amorphous accumulation of  frustrated, radical Know-Nothings who can’t feel whose hand is in their wallet pocket) isn’t a force to be reckoned with, you haven’t been paying attention.… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
DECEMBER 16, 2010 11:07AM

Obama Is Being Obama: A Reevaluation.

OfficialSo-called "liberals and progressives," which I take to mean Democrats who stand a little more to the left than, say, the Clintonistas of the 90's, have been pulling their hair out by the hank with this most recent "caving in " on the part of the Administration in order to… Read full post »

DECEMBER 14, 2010 12:56PM

Whither Books?

What's up with books? The business of book buying and selling is changing...and changing fast.

 In the beginning was the word...

In the old days I used to buy a book in something called a book store.  Usually it was in the neighborhood or downtown. Then Crown Books… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
DECEMBER 10, 2010 8:09PM

The Importance of New START

Gordian KnotIf the bombardment [of London by V-bombs] really becomes a serious nuisance and great rockets with far-reaching and devastating effect fall on many centres . . . I may certainly have to ask you to support me in using poison gas. We
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Editor’s Pick
DECEMBER 8, 2010 12:27PM

Why 2012 Counts: The Quiet Battle for the Courts

statue-of-lady-justiceIt is a fair bet that sometime in the next 6 years - likely starting in 2012 - one or more of the Supreme Court Justices will retire.  Ruth Badar Ginsburg will be 79 in 2012; Antonin Scalia and Anthony Kennedy both will be 76; Steven Breyer will be… Read full post »

3930307Can you believe it? FIFA, the governing body of international soccer has just awarded tiny little Qatar, a million and a half strong spec in the Persian Gulf, the World Cup Games in 2022 after no fewer personages than Bill Clinton, Morgan Freeman and US soccer star Landon Donovan made… Read full post »

NOVEMBER 24, 2010 12:20PM

Fear and the Bait Ball Instinct

Bait Ball PoliticsThere is an odd similarity between one of those marine bait balls you've undoubtedly (?) seen on one or another television natural history show and, most especially, what passes for American conservatism You know: those monster schools of herring or sardines that gather in tight clusters as… Read full post »

NOVEMBER 21, 2010 2:47PM

A Thanksgiving Remembrance

Ah! Next Thursday kicks off my 67th Thanksgiving. It is hard the imagine that 67 turkeys died for my gustatory benefit (and that doesn't even count all the Christmases!); but then how many cows and steers gave their lives that I might enjoy a mushroom and swiss burger now and then… Read full post »

NOVEMBER 18, 2010 10:27AM

"I Am Lost to the World"

Mahler 1
I am lost to the world
with which I used to waste so much time,
It has heard nothing from me for so long
that it may very well believe that I am dead!

It is of no consequence to me
Whether it thinks me dead;
I cannot/
Read full post »