Tuesday, March 31, 2015
I am picking up the buzz that this Sunday is Easter: the day that the Christian God allowed rabbits to lay colored hard boiled eggs in celebration of a zombie outbreak.
As a child I was sent to the Episcopal Church. Children believe what their adults tell them and when you are raised in the Deep South every adult is saying the same thing: that God exist, and the only question is which denomination is the true believers.
Since the small Mississippi Delta town was 90% hard shell Southern Baptist it was pretty accepted that Catholics were heathens and had no chance of heaven, and since Episcopalians allowed children to dance and women to wear makeup we probably wouldn't make the cut either.
It was about the tenth grade that I had questions about religion that I couldn't reconcile. It was comparable to being gay since I believed I was the only person in the state, and perhaps the nation, that just couldn't buy into the God story. I surely couldn't tell anyone, and I had no desire to be born again: to buy into a story, on faith alone, that seemed totally ridiculous.
There is no logical explanation that can justify a belief in Gods; it boils down to the matter of choosing to believe the fantastic.
Saturday, March 28, 2015
Don’t get me wrong; I will probably vote for Hillary – I think she would make an outstanding President.
The problem is that with only one viable Presidential contender on the Democratic ticket we are taking a large chance of a Republican candidate sweeping into office as the ‘only alternative.’
The voting public is fickle. It only takes one misstatement in front of the press (Romney’s 47%)
or one unfortunate photo op (Howard Dean) to turn off the voting public and doom a candidate.
If we run Hillary as the presumed winner nominee without a viable alternative and some scandal or questionable action occurs (and with Hillary she is even vulnerable if Bill is brought under the spotlight) it could sink her candidacy resulting in the voting public turning to Republicans.
Democrats need a viable alternative to Hillary running for the nomination in 2016.
Thursday, March 26, 2015
Art is in the eye of the beholder.
I have to admit, almost as a point of honor - like never haven eaten Chicken McNuggets - that I have never had the urge to watch any of the 'talent' shows that hold mass followings on TV.
However, if there was a show like the one I stumbled across on You Tube I might become a rabid follower.
That was true talent, but in the spirit of American exceptionalism we have not been out performed.
Tuesday, March 24, 2015
Here in Western Maine we have had a warm December, a cold but snow-less January, a February with snow storms two to three time a week and finally a March with temps fluctuating from forty to zero with a constant, unrelenting wind blowing twenty and gusting up to fifty miles-per-hour some days.
Now, unlike the Republican Congress, I am smart enough to know you can’t call climate change from a daily weather phenomenon at some particular location on a particular day. Local weather and world climate are two different assessments.
In my seventy-plus years I have seen years of high snow and low snow; high temperatures and low temperatures, of drought and flood. Variations in weather conditions from year to year is a normal phenomenon.
The climate of the earth constantly changes, and has done so since the formation of the earth and solar system. Most climate changes occur over thousands of years; but occasionally a catastrophic climate change has occurs over a short period due to volcano eruptions or asteroid collisions.
The thing we are experiencing now is rapid catastrophic climate change caused by the depletion of the ozone layer due to increased levels of CO-2 and other man made substances that have been pumped into the atmosphere.
Our present dilemma is caused by pollution, but, of course, the root cause is population increase. About 1918 the world population topped one billion; by 1945 two billion; by 1975 we crested four billion people; by 2000 we were over six billion; and presently we have over seven billion people population the earth. (We have increased the world’s population over seven hundred percent in less than one hundred years)
With the population increases comes an increase demand for food, water, timber, fuel, electricity, automobiles etc. which results in more factories and power plants with the corresponding increase in pollution – and a corresponding increase in waste byproducts.
Ninety-six percent of the world’s climate scientists confirm that we have passed the point of no return and that man-made pollution of the atmosphere (earth and water) have finally pushed the earth beyond recovery, and that rapid warming of the earth resulting in accelerated melting of polar ice caps is causing irreversible rapid change to our climate – the optimum word being rapid change.
The other four percent of scientist that deny climate change, claiming it is a natural fluctuation, are either graduates of Gerry Falwell University, or are southern fundamentalist Christians with suspect science credentials, still looking to justify that the world is six millions old and dinosaurs and man existed at the same time.
We can see this change, and we can adjust to it; but, the change is real, it is happening now, and this is only the beginning.
Sunday, March 22, 2015
There is a point in all of us
Somewhere lost in our DNA
Where nature overtakes nurture
And we are able to hear the cry
From our long forgotten past.
It is the wind that speaks to us
Beyond our cellphones and I-pads
Beyond our TV’s and computers’
When everything that consumes our daily lives
Is shut down and there is silence;
Then we can hear the wind.
I have heard it and felt it before, but each time in a place of silence and alone. The wind. More than a whisper: a cry, a howl, a roar – a voice that brings back a clouded memory – something through a glass darkly – of a time when I am dressed in skins, huddled in a cave or blown down shelter, and the wind outside is warning me: don’t come out – I am strong – I am nature – I am god.
Wednesday, March 18, 2015
I got up this morning and got on a Dr John Kick.
Back in the days of slavery a strong magic religion influence was introduced by black slaves from the Dominican Republic. Slave owners demanded slaves worship their Christian God that preached subservience, so slaves were forced to use the names of Christian saints as place holders for their gods of magic.
Voodoo was alive and well in the south where I was raised in the Mississippi Delta and across the river in Louisiana. I believe it is still alive and well today in the old south.
Dr John Litenie des Saints
On a lighter side Etta James and Dr John: Id Rather Go Blind.
Turn up your volume and groove out.
Sunday, March 15, 2015
If you haven't seen VICE on HBO; or if you don't have HBO, here is a program aired two weeks ago on the ice melt in Antarctica. If your computer can handle the extra ram memory I suggest you click the icon lower right and watch it in enlarged screen view.
The talk about the need to stop climate change is over - we have passed the point of no return; now it is just a matter of how to adjust to it.
The talk about the need to stop climate change is over - we have passed the point of no return; now it is just a matter of how to adjust to it.
Friday, March 13, 2015
EVERYONE’S PRIORITY IS TO COVER THEIR OWN ASS
No one of any position and any intelligence uses e-mail for any correspondence that my effect their tenure.
One of the most tentative employment position is superintendent (and principal) in an Alaskan Native school district: you serve at the pleasure of a school board (and like most school boards) that has no teaching background or experience, but also carry a cultural resentment for non-native administrators. I worked for a superintendent that was absolutely paranoid about e-mail. We carried on general correspondence via e-mail; but any situation that had a possibility of being questioned by the school board was discussed only in person or by phone.
I can understand Hillary wanting the control of her e-mails; but with any ambition beyond Secretary of State her private server was bound to ignite a fire storm of criticism – because everything about her is and has always been a subject of criticism and paranoid scrutiny by the Republican Right.
Like a Texas sharpshooter the Republicans will draw a target around this e-mail controversy.
In Logic we study arguments; and the Republicans are using an Argumentum Ignorantian: the premise is true because it has not been proven it is not true.
What it all boils down to is that Republicans hate the Democrats, the Democrats disdain the Republicans and the Independents have no chance.
So there will be weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth; and in the end, half of the country will be dissatisfied with the results of the 2016 election regardless of who is elected – and life will go on as usual.
SNAFU: Situation Normal All Fucked Up.
Wednesday, March 11, 2015
Woke up this morning, a blue moon in my eyes: headache – BC Powder – writing a blog post.
Finally, shake the headache and get the munchies.
I once knew a man in Newfoundland that wouldn't eat bought bread; he called it baker’s fog. I understand his prejudice: there is nothing like a slice of crisply toasted homemade bread slathered in butter.
My wife and I have been making bread in a bread maker since the mid 1980’s. We still buy ‘baker’s fog’ on occasion; but our preference is for our own homemade bread.
Here is our favorite recipe:
One cup of milk – warm or room temperature
One half cup of water
Three cups of all-purpose flour
One cup of stone-ground wheat flour
One and a half teaspoons of salt
Two teaspoons of sugar
Two tablespoons of butter
One teaspoon of yeast
For those that haven’t made bread in a bread machine:
After the mixing begins check the bread pan – if ingredients are not forming a ball add one table spoon of water. Wait two minutes and check again: add another tablespoon of water if needed (careful - the tendency is to add too much water and the dough becomes sticky.)
So this morning it is a cup of strong sweet tea and homemade toast - well done (if it is brown it is cooking if it is black it is done)- slathered in I Can’t Believe It Is Not Butter.
Have a Good Morning:
Woke up this morning – three- o clock – the headache I had been dodging all day finally caught up with me.
Take a BC powder and come back strong.
I am a winter person; I love the winter with snow storms, cold that nips at unexposed skin, winds that howl and white outs that obscure the landscape. I am in my element on snow shoes, or even snow blowing my driveway and clearing my roof. I love the warmth and glow of a woodstove. The winter is invigorating, and reminds me like no other time that I are alive.
Having said that I am becoming melancholy for spring. After weeks of temperatures in the single number and teens with nights dropping to zero or below, the last few days have been sunny with temps reaching forties – today fifty. We still have three feet of snow cover and after living in Maine for many years I know this is just a tease; but I am ready for winter to be over.
Like the winter, I don’t mind the nights. It is a quiet time – an alone time – a time when the world is asleep and you have it to yourself – a few lone people populating a sleeping world.
The headache is thankfully subsiding: or at least I have focused on something else.
The Midnight Rider
Wednesday, March 4, 2015
Tuesday, March 3, 2015
NERD SCIENCE STATISTICS:
I Can't help myself.
The world population in the year 1500 is estimated to be about four hundred and fifty million (450,000,000) people.
If you start counting all your direct ancestry - exponentially: two grandparents; four great grand parents; eight great-great grand parents; sixteen g-g-g grandparents etc. the number of your ancestors exceeds the population of the Earth about the year 1450 (around 1450 you exceed five hundred million direct ancestors.) After that, by following reverse population growth your ancestry begins to collapse toward an original Eve; or Australopithecus Africanus: an original Lucy to be more exact.
|Lucy and Luke - the alpha ancestors.|
Note: no apple trees and snakes - just reverse evolution.
Monday, March 2, 2015
Bring back the draft
Hell no - We won't go!
The way you wage endless wars so the people won't protest, is with an all volunteer military.
Reality shows have taken a major hold on American television. From Lock Up to Survivor, from Honey Boo Boo to My 600 Pound Life Americans are tuning in to orchestrated entertainment packaged as real life.
A number of programs on the fringe of ‘reality’ are the genealogy shows – we will trace your ancestor line back to….. - for your entertainment and enlightenment; now doesn’t that make you proud?
We would all like to think we could trace our ancestry back to a hero, a President, a horse thief, a famous politician, a general, hooker or at least someone of note; and the reality is we all probably can – all of the above.
I have mentioned in prior blogs that by exponential counting we rack up our ancestral count very quickly (doubling each generation.)
On the genealogy TV programs they always manage to WOW the person researched and the audience with a blood line back to someone of note. The research may not be easy, but it is a pretty easy call to make a famous connection.
If you are not a recent immigrant to the United States your distant American ancestry is a watered down linage of thousands of direct ancestors – probably among them a hero, a horse thief, a famous politician, general, hooker or whatever would spin your prop.
Let’s go back to 1776. Using twenty years as a generation scale (birth to giving birth) we will have to go back nineteen generations; and nineteen generations back you have five hundred thousand (500,000) great grandparents: two hundred and fifty thousand (250,000) grandmothers and two hundred and fifty thousand grandfathers – and you are equally kin to each of them. There is a pretty good chance among a half-a-million ancestors you can come up with your dream bloodline; even the snobbish connection to the Daughters and Sons of the American Revolution.
How about Mayflower ancestry. In 1620 the European population of the New World (Massachusetts and Virginia) was approximately 500; and back twenty-one generations your direct ancestry was something over two million (2,000,000.)
Even if you are of slave descendants, it only takes one interracial breeding to put you on the track to the Mayflower passengers and crew.
Though it may disdain you to think of it - you and I are quite likely kin at some point in the generational chain.
*Note: by the year 1440 you begin doubling by billions: we are truly all brothers and sisters many times removed.