Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Who influenced the election?

Who had more influence--the MSM spending billions in 2016 talking about and ridiculing Trump, or Russian disinformation trolls on FB spending thousands? Trump got so much free advertising from MSNBC and CNN and the broadcast media, he should have added them to his staff.

And which country spends more trying to influence other governments and cultures in trade, agriculture, military advisors, NGOs, education, Peace Corps, entertainment and family planning (aka contraception and abortion)--Russia or the U.S.A.? If you guessed Russia, you are wrong. And to suggest that Trump supporters were influenced by Russian ads on Facebook and Twitter means someone didn't pay attention to Hillary's awful campaign and policies.


All Hallows’ Eve

How long before the triggered haters and bigots (THAB) realize October 31 is the Eve of All Saints Day or All Hallows' Eve? November 1 is the day we recall and honor the whole people of God--Christians here and those who have gone on to be with Jesus (For all the saints who from their labors rest. . .https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rgwq7f2FpNk) . THAB on the left are being triggered by little kids dressing as princesses, pagans and hoboes (boys in drag dressed as girls are OK), so I expect they will soon follow the trail of some Christian cults that deny the holiday altogether.

"In 844, Pope Gregory IV transferred the feast (of martyrs) to November 1st, timing it around the harvests to be able to provide food for the pilgrims. Some scholars believe this was to substitute a feast for the pagan celebrations during that time of year. Pope Sixtus IV in 1484 established November 1 as a holyday of obligation and gave it both a vigil (known today as "All Hallows' Eve" or "Hallowe'en") and an eight-day period or octave to celebrate the feast." CatholicCulture.org

Monday, October 30, 2017

Manafort's background has been out there for some time

"The so-called conspiracy against the United States mainly involves Manafort’s and Gates’s alleged failure to file Treasury Department forms required by the Bank Secrecy Act. Specifically, Americans who hold a stake in foreign bank accounts must file what’s known as an “FBAR” (foreign bank account report) in any year in which, at any point, the balance in the account exceeds $10,000. Federal law also requires disclosure of foreign accounts on annual income-tax returns. Manafort and Gates are said to have controlled foreign accounts through which their Ukrainian political-consulting income sluiced, and to have failed to file accurate FBARs and tax returns. In addition, they allegedly failed to register as foreign agents from 2008 through 2014. . ."
The real collusion is Clinton, DNC and FusionGPS and the phony dossier of which Mueller was a part when he was in the Obama administration. Unfortunately, for Americans watching broadcast news and MSNBC, they are still in the dark. Yesterday Democrats who didn't run away from reporters were saying everyone does opposition research and today they are saying, Oh my gosh look what a campaign employee did--talked to a Russian about Hillary's e-mails (Papadopoulos).
Read more at: http://www.nationalreview.com/article/453244/manafort-indictment-no-signs-trump-russia-collusion

Senior discounts

Celebrating the Reformation

Upper Arlington Lutheran Church (UALC) is observing the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. We (at Lytham Road campus) had a great sermon and concert yesterday. Yes, Martin Luther did change things, but not necessarily for the better and not alone. There were huge movements afoot.

Luther is also credited with creating the modern nation state. Warring nationalistic states protecting their own borders speaking languages not known by their neighbor states replaced Christendom ruled from Rome, which was sort of an overarching umbrella organization with a common language —Latin— and a common religion, with common values.

The ruling nobility of about 1400 little states and cities lusted for the money and wealth that went to Rome. What resulted was less a reform and more a resurgence of the barbarian tribe mentality that had taken over the Roman Empire a thousand years earlier. The result was the modern nation states of Europe that went to war with each other for the next 400 years, resulting in the bloodiest century of all—the 20th. Instead of the Holy Roman Empire the world was gifted many church entities, all called Christian—Anglican, Lutheran, Reformed, Anabaptist, etc.--all controlled by the state. (Which is why the writers of the U.S. Constitution wrote into the document that the state could not control the church.)

Today we have something like 40,000 different Protestant, Bible only, non-denominational, and Restoration churches with thousands of little popes and scandals that would make Luther’s hair stand on end. Christianity has become a “Me and Jesus” movement in the U.S. and in Europe Christianity is being replaced with millions believing instead in astrology, lucky charms and pagan practices.
Some of the chapters of Rodney Stark’s excellent book on "Reformation Myths" are available at Google books. https://books.google.com/books/about/Reformation_Myths.html…


Sunday, October 29, 2017

They don't make things like they used to--my new blouse

This photo found on the internet is a 2x version similar to my new Merona Black White V Neck Twist Center 3/4 Sleeve Lined polyester blouse.  I bought a M, so it isn't this boxy. I wear an 8, but this thing is so tight, a size 2 woman would have a struggle putting it on--or breathing.  The problem is I didn't read the label before I bought it on sale (no returns) and didn't try it on.  I didn't notice it had a 22% spandex lining.  This thing is tight enough to be a girdle and bra all in one. It's an instrument of torture.   I wore it Friday night to a restaurant, and if I wanted to diet, I would wear something with a spandex lining!  So I decided I'd see if I could cut out the lining.  HA!  They don't make things like they use to--they make them better, neater, tighter, and meant to last forever--at least the seams of the lining. I turned it completely inside out, and every seam is bound and overstitched and firmly attached under the bust to the polyester fabric. Made in Vietnam by tiny fingers which will never let go.  So far, I cut the spandex in four places to see if I could breathe in it, then tried it on, and now think I may have a DVT under my arm.

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Middle class Americans believe in education

We information junkies and professionals (primarily middle class) think if people have information on a better life, good food, climate change, domestic violence, nicotine and condoms then change happens. We believe information/education has the power to change minds, individuals, companies, politicians and eventually the world! But does it?  Public service announcements about mammograms are not the research that will reduce deaths and disfigurements. Reading a brochure on horse therapy for the mentally challenged will not buy and train a horse. Creating a network to reduce duplication is not providing a bed or chair or pots and pans.

I do think much of what is spent  for education and  information syphons off “action” funding.
Looking through the booklet for “Bucks for Charity 2017” which is OSU’s version of “community chest,” it’s evident that information/education is an integral part of many charities. I believe in education and knowledge—it’s been my life’s work—it’s why I blog and dump links and statistics on my Facebook Friends. PDHC where I volunteer provides mentoring and parenting classes, education for pregnant women and has many informational booklets, Bibles in English and Spanish,  and documents on parenting, health, pregnancy, material aid, adoption, chastity, diseases--anything needed to save the lives of babies and build stronger families.

Here are some examples from the community shares and health section of “Bucks for Charity 2017” (250 agencies) which receives 35.5% of total funding (United Way of the various communities receives 28.4%):
“health information” Community Health Charities
“conducts awareness and advocacy activities” ALS Association
“providing information” American Diabetes Association
“education, research, advocacy, outreach” American Heart Association
“educational programming, training, outreach” Down Syndrome Association
“broad based advocacy, education” Hospice Organization
“education programs” March of Dimes
“education and outreach”NAMI (mental illness)
“providing education and support” PDHC (pro-life)
“eye safety education, information” Prevent Blindness Ohio
“promotes greater understanding” American council of the blind
“offers community education” Breathing Association
“proven curriculum of 14 courses” Career Transition Institute
“promotes education” Central Ohio Green Education Fund
“educates about children’s needs” Children’s Defense Fund
“promoting decent, safe affordable housing” Coalition on Homelessness and Housing
“educates . . .insidious effects of homelessness” Columbus Coalition for the Homeless
“provides educational exhibitions, lectures, tours,” Columbus Historical Society
“provides . . . educational events” The Free Press
“educational opportunities, exchange information” Compassionate Communication
“educational programs. . . family learning, education in science, etc.” COSI
“educating and advocating fair treatment"  Equality Ohio (LGBTQ)
“promotes food production, nutrition, gardening” Four Seasons City Farm (east side)
“focused on education, employment and leadership development” Godman Guild
“safety trainings to varied populations” LifeCare Alliance (HIV/AIDS)
“provides education and inspiration” Local Matters (diet related diseases)
“disability awareness” Mid Ohio Board for an Independent Living Environment
“information about reproductive health [aka abortion]” NARAL
“preserving, revitalizing AI/AN values, rights, traditions,” Native Amer. Indian Center
“quality arts education. . . instruction” Ohio Alliance for Arts Education
“education, training, information, referral line” Ohio Domestic Violence Network
“education and advocacy” Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association
“classes on yoga and movement arts” Center for Wholeness
“research, education” Ohio NOW Education & Legal Fund
“Provides education, referral, advocacy” Ohio Veterans, Inc.
“promotes [abortion]” Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio
“providing services, knowledge, tools and equipment” Rebuilding Together Central Ohio
“provides service learning programs” See Kids Dream
“connects people to learning opportunities. . .educational outreach” Simply Living
“advocacy. . . education” Stonewall Columbus, Inc  (LGBTQ)
“information, education and referrals” Worthington Resource Pantry (healthy food)
Other organizations describe their goals/missions in these words—action goals.
“provides services,” “care and support,” “funds research,” “fighting xyz disease,” “mission is to cure xyz disease,” “cure, prevent, treat xys disease,” “boost social skills,” “promotes lung health” “helps, adopts, investigates,” “provides adoption services (cats), subsidizes poor,” “provides free breakfast and lunch, medical screenings,” “interpreting, C-print, ADA assistance, employment (deaf),” “provides therapeutic horse programming” “healthcare for LGBTQ, HIV,” “cooperative community gardening,” “provides free furniture,” “financial assistance for families of First Responders,” “provides glass for art,” “builds decent, affordable houses,” “direct services for homeless, HIV, addiction, incarceration,” “provides temporary subsidized housing,” “provides food, clothing, registering for government benefits,” “provides nutritious food,” “provides assistance to families with critically ill children,” “provides food, housing, transportation, employment opportunities,” “transports pets from rural shelters” and “bicycles for transportation.”
Evaluate your time. Check your wallet.  Measure your success.  Education takes a long, long time, and may or may not work. A hot meal and change of clothes is immediate, and gets that task taken care of so you and the recipient (the Bible says he's Jesus) can move on.

Friday, October 27, 2017

You've got to read Tinseltown Travelogue

Tinseltown Travelogue is a three-part series exploring Hollywood's stunning hypocrisy and institutionalized bigotry. This story, months in the making, comes on the heels of the explosive New York Times exposé of alleged sexual misconduct over decades by Tinseltown's most celebrated producer, Harvey Weinstein, and further unmasks an industry in the midst of an ethical unraveling. http://www.breitbart.com/tinseltown/2/  (Part 3 isn't on the website yet)

So what should we call this lack of diversity, a gap or -ism?
"When reviewing publicly published data for all actors nominated in 2017 for best actor/actress in a lead or supporting scripted role for the Oscars, Golden Globes, Screen Actors Guild Awards, and the Primetime Emmys, there wasn’t a single publicly verifiable right-of-center nominated actor out of the 240 potential awards. Not one. These are some of the most vocal stars in Hollywood because they are interviewed by media throughout the ...year as a result of their nominations. With the most prominent celebrities being almost uniformly liberal – Republicans are largely the only faction meaningfully affecting box office revenues based on politics. To Middle America, Hollywood has long been considered the enemy – and they’re acting on that relationship by closing their wallets." Tinseltown Travelogue, pt. 1.
The black-list of conservatives, and particularly anyone who voted for Trump or is even sympathetic, is bigger and badder than when it was a Communist witch hunt 60 years ago; now it's a black-list of any conservative except the old icons like Clint Eastwood by the left and the Communists in Hollywood. Everyone else has to hide in the closet; they don't dare speak freely or they'll never work again.
"When blacks claimed a lack of diversity approaching this level of disparity for just one award show, a national debate branded #OscarsSoWhite swept the nation. Not so much as a peep has been heard from the media about Movie City’s snub of rightwingers."
Here's the lack of political diversity: 76% left wing, 3% right wing, 21% unclear (based on campaign donations, public statements, and verifiable social media accounts). So that makes it about 90% left wing.

So minorities, women and conservatives have been abused by the liberals in Hollywood, who only love and respect their own. Jason Hall, the director of "Thank you for your service" is an anti-Trumper according to this personal account and ridiculed the author's wife on social media (a Mexican immigrant).
"In early January 2017, an anonymous email went out to members of the Directors Guild of America (DGA) suggesting that they would be blacklisted if they worked on the TV broadcast of Trump’s inauguration. Recipients thought the message was sent from someone of rank at the DGA. A union spokesperson confirmed with Breitbart News that they performed an investigation and were unable to identify the perpetrator of the email.

"When actress Nicole Kidman made the fairly benign statement days before the Inauguration that Americans should move on from the election and unite in support of the new president – third-generation TV writer Joss Whedon played the enforcer of Hollywood’s one-party system by mocking Kidman’s looks, and labeling her a “Puppet for Trump. Seemingly fearing further retribution, Kidman quickly backed off her statement." Tinseltown travelogue, pt. 2 
"In March 2017, when asked by Jimmy Kimmel if he’d attended Trump’s inauguration, actor and self-professed conservative Tim Allen hesitantly replied yes, joking that he had to answer carefully in a Hollywood that was acting like 1930s Germany. The liberal mainstream media savaged him for his statement, and his TV show, Last Man Standing, with the second highest viewership for a comedy on ABC, was canceled within months." Tinseltown Travelogue, pt. 2.

How the DOJ slush fund worked

Eight years of criminal behavior at the highest levels. Much worse than anything Nixon ever thought of. How did the Department of Justice slush fund work? Judicial Watch explains:

"An Obama-era scheme that forced companies sued by the government to fund leftist groups overtly excluded conservative organizations, according to internal Department of Justice (DOJ) records obtained by Judicial Watch. As part of settlements, the DOJ would often give the corporations—mainly big banks—double credit if they gave money to LEFTWING INTEREST GROUPS handpicked by the administration instead of paying the government. The new records demonstrate a collaborative effort among high-level officials in the Office of the Assistant Attorney General (OAAG) and the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) to ensure conservative groups did not receive any settlement cash.

The operation is known as a DOJ “slush fund” that filled the coffers of Obama-allied nonprofits such as the NATIONAL COUNCIL OF LA RAZA, URBAN LEAGUE, and NATIONAL COMMUNITY REINVESTMENT COALITION [also heavily involved in the 2008 housing collapse] Earlier this year Judicial sued the DOJ for records relating to the problematic Obama administration policy of settling government lawsuits against corporate defendants by requiring that the corporations make “donations” to leftwing interest groups.

Back in 2010 Judicial Watch sued the DOJ over a similar program in which the agency’s Civil Rights Division directed large sums of cash settlements in discrimination lawsuits to organization that were not officially connected to the lawsuits. Recipients were also leftist groups that aligned with Obama’s ultra-liberal agenda." For more:  http://jw.structure.email/press-release/10-27-17-cc-media

A bargain at $37,000


Sometimes I click on an ad. A house in Hilltop (west side of Columbus) for $37,000. Looked nice--video went back to 2006. So I checked the "neighborhood" for owner/residents. (I think it is currently a rental for $700). Seems this house has anywhere from 23-38 residents. Is that possible in a 3 bedroom, one bath, 1100 sq.ft. house? Is this why we need voter ID checks?

The anti-Catholic films of Harvey Weinstein

What would you say if someone had financed and encouraged nine films bashing Jews or Muslims or women? What if the films were about Catholics? Would that be OK? How much of your knowledge of the Catholic church has come from films?  Harvey Weinstein's anti-Catholic films:
*Priest (1995), a film that centers around homosexuality, celibacy and the priesthood. 
*The Butcher Boy (1998) is about a young boy who is molested by a priest in a reform school and is fascinated by delusional fantasies about a foul-mouthed Virgin Mary played by everyone’s favorite bigot, Sinéad O'Connor. Birds of a feather flock together. 
*Dogma (1999), a confusing pastiche of Catholic beliefs, pagan myths and atheist Black Legend slapped together about the end of the world in which a descendant of Blessed Virgin Mary and St. Joseph who works in an abortion clinic. 
*40 Days and 40 Nights (2002) ridicules Catholics who remain celibate for Lent treating sacrifice and abstention as if it was feat of strength rather than a spiritual offering to God. 
*The Magdalene Sisters (2002) depicted lies about Irish nuns falsely portraying them as abusive toward young wayward women they had “enslaved” in their laundries. In reality, the Irish secular government, dumped these women with the nuns as their families had already disowned them. The nuns gave them food, board and spiritual guidance and showed them love saving these young women from having to prostitute themselves. 
*Bad Santa (2003) depicted a mall Santa who was a vulgar, drunken, suicidal, chain-smoking, sex-addicted thief. Some have drawn parallels between this mockery of this children’s icon and Weinstein himself. 
*Sin City (2005) which depicted a Catholic bishop who aides and abets a serial murderer and engages in cannibalism. 
*Black Christmas (2006) is a tiresome slasher film replete with gratuitous sex and foul language. Both Harvey and his brother Bob were remarkably hands-on with this film. 
*Philomena (2013) was another set of lies reminiscent of the Black Legend that insisted that “evil” nuns had kidnapped a woman’s child. Actually, Philomena Lee abandoned her out-of-wedlock son when she was a teenager. It was the actions of the nuns, who often run orphanages around the world and throughout the past two millennia, who gave the child to an American couple who adopted him. Weinstein lobbied the Academy in the hope of getting an Oscar for Philomena. Thankfully, he failed. . .  
Both anti-Catholicism and anti-Semitism should be condemned, without exception. Bigots, however, often condemn one while eagerly engaging in the other."
 When Weinstein received a Humanitarian award in 2015, he condemned anti-Semitism.



The hacked e-mails of Clinton

I missed this in the Hillary hacked leaks. Rereading BBC list. Podesta also called Sanders "a doofus." Is it racist or bigoted to refer to people as "food groups?"
"Mrs Clinton's campaign considered Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates or his wife Melinda as her running mate, according to the hacked emails. 
Mr Podesta drafted a list of nearly 40 names for her potential vice-presidential pick, organising it by what he called "rough food groups", which appeared to refer to demographic coalitions. 
The list included Hispanic, white and black men, three former high-ranking military officers, business leaders and female senators.  
Among those included were Apple's Tim Cook, former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, General Motors' Marry Barra and Starbucks chief executive Howard Schultz. 
Senator Bernie Sanders was listed in a group by himself. "  

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Ben Carson quote

"The 2010 budget request for the International Military Education and Training programme proposed to increase funding for African countries from just under US$14 million to more than US$16 million, with additional increases for North African countries. Major recipients slated for increases include Algeria, Chad, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Equatorial Guinea, Ghana, Liberia, Libya, Mali, Morocco, NIGER, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, South Africa and Uganda. . .during her visit to Nigeria in August 2009, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton promised that the administration would consider any request by the Nigerian government for military support to enhance its capacity to repress armed militants in the Niger Delta region. The failure of the Nigerian government to implement major elements of its amnesty programme in this vital oil-producing area has recently led to a resumption of violent incidents and attacks on oil installations in the Niger Delta." https://www.pambazuka.org/governance/obama-and-us-military-engagement-africa


The DOJ and the gag order

I know Democrats and the MSM are trying their best to ignore the ballooning  bribery and pay to play scandal of the Clintons, the CFIUS (inter-agency committee authorized to review transactions that could result in control of a U.S. business by a foreign person) with the FBI involvement. Democrats are calling it a plot by Brietbart and Fox. Bank receipts, pay offs, etc. Bob Mueller, who was with the FBI at the time of the transfer to Russia and the original investigation is implicated.  Plus the dossier scandal and the British spy.  Oh my.  So much to learn. Democrats were so eager to track every crumb of evidence when they thought it was about Trump colluding with Russia!

The Justice Department says it has lifted a gag order preventing an FBI informant from telling Congress details about the Obama-era deal in which a Russian-backed company bought a uranium firm with mines in the U.S. Although some Democrats will be willing to throw Hillary under the bus to save St. Obama, others will stand with her.  They still have the Clinton crime machine even if the foundation is gone to go after them.


Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Russia, Clinton and Fusion GPS

Which is worse? Russia buying social media ads (half of which were after the campaign) or Hillary selling our Uranium to the Russians who give it to Iran and North Korea? Which is worse? Trump’s bull in a china shop behavior and language or Clinton and DNC paying a spy to bring down his campaign?

What’s coming out now is almost incomprehensible—DNC and Clinton campaign behind the phony dossier that FBI showed Trump before election (which he denied) and now the FBI and Mueller are implicated, as well as Hillary and Obama. They all knew about Uranium One deal, the money she and Bill got, and just gave her a pass. Forget Flake and Corker.  They are just nothings. This crime goes to the highest levels, much worse than anything Nixon ever thought of.   But the woman we could have elected as president?  The DoJ and FBI and our former president all colluding to smear and implicate Trump in a crazy Russian scandal to destabilize not just his candidacy, but then his presidency?  She’s lower than I thought. And One World Obama’s going down fast. Who will investigate Bob Mueller who is investigating the president? He knew also!

 But I’m worried about the unnamed Republican who was involved with Steele (the British spy) before the Clintons took over the dirty deal.  Who knows maybe it was Flake or Corker, but supposedly it was one of the primary candidates. Hoping it wasn’t Cruz, my favorite after Walker, Jindal and Carson.  As they say, get out the popcorn for this thriller, but we’ll need a score card. The Washington Post has the story—and Bezos must have had to swallow gasoline to even allow it in print.

"The Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee helped fund research that resulted in a now-famous dossier containing allegations about President Trump’s connections to Russia and possible coordination between his campaign and the Kremlin, people familiar with the matter said." Washington Post, Oct. 24, 2017.





I guess Weinstein is out of the news for the duration while we watch Hillary Clinton's lie on her book tour.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Feeding America's hungry children

 This charity, Feeding America, suggests donating to them because hungry children can't learn, but 13 million U.S. children get free or reduced cost breakfasts at school, free or reduced cost lunches, and free after school snacks, and special plans for summer time and camps through USDA programs. If you read through Feeding America's programs, none seem to be about breakfast at school.

FA is now 35 years old, a charity (2nd Harvest) begun by one person to distribute food surpluses. However, the government's definition of hunger has expanded and is now "food insecurity," not hunger, and all the programs, both government and charities, have expanded. Low income households are not dumb about their resources. As food programs expand, those households factor that into their budgets, leaving more cash for non-food items such as rent, utilities, clothing, alcohol, cigarettes, gasoline, cell phone contracts, etc. Studies show that even with the lowest unemployment rate since the early 1970s, food pantries are still an important resource for many households, some increasing their visits from occasional to regular.

Although the recession ended in June 2009, participation in SNAP, the government's largest low income food program, has never returned to pre-2008 levels, in part because people were recruited to participate with expanded ARRA money. Yes, it sounds heartless to question why so many people remain on government and charity food programs when we have 123 transfer of wealth programs to assist, however, some questions need to be asked about why parents are not using their resources to feed their children.  A low income family with children can receive about $400/month in just SNAP benefits, plus access to USDA programs at school and church food pantries. And yes, a family can eat very well using just SNAP--there's a cook book on line.


Monday, October 23, 2017

Monday Memories--the Tulamo anniversary tour

Dinner at Houlihan's Oct. 22
The Tulamos have been with us eight days out of their 6 week tour of the United States to celebrate their 40th wedding anniversary.  We met about 38 years ago when Riitta was a student at the veterinary college at Ohio State University.  We helped them find an apartment, loaned them a bicycle, brought them to church with us, and enjoyed many happy holidays and family occasions with them.

We picked them up on Monday evening at the airport and came home for dinner. On Tuesday we went to the Columbus Museum of Art (see earlier blog).  On Wednesday Steve and Valerie Regoli picked them up at our home in the morning and brought them home late at night. On Thursday and Friday we went to Lakeside to see the cottage where we spend our summers.  In looking at our cottage guest book we saw it was Oct. 19, 1991, they had been there on a previous trip back to the states (but it was very cold that year).  That night we ate at Cleat's. The weather couldn't have been better and after a visit to the lighthouse on Friday we had a picnic on the Lakefront. Friday night we went out to eat with our daughter and son-in-law at the Rusty Bucket in Upper Arlington to celebrate his birthday.  On Saturday we drove to Circleville to the pumpkin show--something like 400,000 people show up to look at one block of pumpkins and 10 blocks of carnival rides and food. On Sunday after church we had a brunch for 18 at our home and invited the few people still around who knew them almost 40 years ago, and on Monday they visited the studio in German Village of a cartoonist Bob knows.  That evening we went out as their guests to Houlihan's for dinner--a final anniversary dinner, which they've done in each location they've visited--Napa Valley in California, Colorado, Minneapolis, Wisconsin. Now they are off to Boston for some final sight seeing.
Group selfie at dinner, Oct. 15
Group selfie at the lake, Oct. 18
At Lake Erie Oct. 18
 Our shoes at Marblehead
Boats docked at Cleat's, Oct. 18
Brunch for Tulamos Oct. 21

14 styles mistakes that will age us

Now we know why we age—we’re making fashion mistakes!  Leggings, tights, long hair, bulky tent look, clothes not fitting our body style, too much black, too many accessories, and wearing athletic clothes in public! 


I hope there’s a better way to say this—very odd and awkward sentence construction. “Oversized clothing won’t only make you look larger but it’ll take your natural shape away from you too so it’ll give the illusion of exaggerating your size – and that’s probably not what you want. So, avoid anything that resembles a tent.”

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Notice the pronouns

Although I don't think the media ever mentioned it, social media was all over Obama for 8 years for his use of the first person pronoun.  I, me, my, were the main topics of many of his speeches. Trump's speeches are very different.  He talks about doing things together, or our partners, or "we".  I think his ego is just a large as the former president's, but having been a business man he knows the value of commended those under him to keep the team working hard.

Office of the Press Secretary
October 21, 2017
Statement by President Donald J. Trump on the Defeat of ISIS in Raqqah
I am pleased to announce that the Syrian Democratic Forces, our partners in the fight against ISIS in Syria, have successfully recaptured Raqqah – the terrorist group’s self-proclaimed capital city. Together, our forces have liberated the entire city from ISIS control.
The defeat of ISIS in Raqqah represents a critical breakthrough in our worldwide campaign to defeat ISIS and its wicked ideology. With the liberation of ISIS’s capital and the vast majority of its territory, the end of the ISIS caliphate is in sight.
We will soon transition into a new phase in which we will support local security forces, de-escalate violence across Syria, and advance the conditions for lasting peace, so that the terrorists cannot return to threaten our collective security again. Together, with our allies and partners, we will support diplomatic negotiations that end the violence, allow refugees to return safely home, and yield a political transition that honors the will of the Syrian people.
One of my core campaign promises to the American people was to defeat ISIS and to counter the spread of hateful ideology. That is why, in the first days of my Administration, I issued orders to give our commanders and troops on the ground the full authorities to achieve this mission. As a result, ISIS strongholds in Mosul and Raqqah have fallen. We have made, alongside our coalition partners, more progress against these evil terrorists in the past several months than in the past several years.
I commend all of our coalition partners for the sacrifices they have made in this noble effort. Therefore, as we recognize this military accomplishment, we also pause to honor our service men and women and all they have given to protect us and all civilized people from these modern day barbarians.
Today, we reaffirm that ISIS leaders, and anyone who supports them, must and will face justice.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

The Tulamos are here

We visited the Columbus Museum of Art today.  We ate in the lovely new restaurant then toured the building, with Martti taking photos. We met about 39 years ago when Riitta was a PhD student in the veterinary college at Ohio State, and they have been touring the U.S. since September 19 for their 40th anniversary celebration.  Both are retired now and about 70 years old.  And they were such youngsters when we met and now have 2 grandbabies. And the brakes started going bad in the van this week, so we also made a mad dash to have them fixed ($760.79) so we took the smaller SUV to drive downtown, which gave us a lot of laughs trying to get in and out of the back seat, which I think was intended for children.

Monday, October 16, 2017

"Best places" to live

It was an article on Facebook. So I took a look.  Olathe, KS, Kirkland, WA, Atascocita, TX, Carmel, IN and many others. Diversity is not highly valued or one of the criteria in these "best of" lists no matter who makes them (and there are many). Kirkland has 1.2% black citizens, Olathe 3.7%. Atascocita, TX, which I've never heard of, has 19.2% black citizens. In fact, cities in the south were all pretty good in that category. So I dug a little deeper. 

 Maryland is the wealthiest state in the country. The town with both a good livability rating and a good racial mix is Columbia (wonder how long it will be allowed to keep that name?). It is about 50 years old and was designed by a Christian businessman to be "perfect," with a mix of housing, business, organizations, religions and races, with easy access to DC. In the livability rating, it doesn't rate as high as McLean, VA, also a DC suburb which has only 1.45% black, but an Asian population double the Maryland percentage. It's just a few miles from Columbia. Both McLean and Columbia rate F in affordability, but A or A+ in other categories like crime, schools, etc. McLean has a marriage rate much higher than Maryland or Columbia.

Women in technology fields

I'm not the least bit concerned about the underrepresentation of women in the tech industry. Those companies hire those who can make them a profit, including a disproportionate number of foreign workers. They all lean heavily to the Left, so take it up with the protestors. Women also don't choose the same career track in college, and when they do get into tech/computer work, many don't like the culture, nerdy, male and strange. No one worried that in my career field (library science) women outnumber the men at all levels. Women outnumber men in almost all the professional colleges--law, medicine, pharmacy, veterinary medicine, and Dartmouth has reported finally women outnumber men in engineering. In many cities, women in similar age groups and education level earn more than similarly qualified men. Where are the protests? A capitalist will look at the bottom line, and if that bottom is on a woman, she gets the job.



Hefner and Weinstein

From my vantage point, I can see no difference between Hefner and Weinstein. One was eulogized for dying rich with a bevy of bimbos, the other condemned without a trial after years of his accomplices praising him and accepting his wealth. Two guys who got rich using and objectifying women. So I decided to Google it, and found something interesting. Hypocrisy (shocking, I know).
"Hefner and Weinstein were known to use their power to manipulate their victims, but the manipulation lives on as we eulogize these men. We need look no further than the editorials produced around both Hefner's death and the revelations of Weinstein's assaults to see how their influence holds sway over our judgement of them, too. Obituaries unsure whether to memorialize or condemn the creator of Playboy abounded in late September. Now, exposés of Harvey Weinstein similarly vacillate between the bullet points of his lengthy resume and the fact that all the while he has been serially harassing women in Hollywood."  https://verilymag.com/2017/10/news-media-confusing-coverage-of-harvey-weinstein-and-hugh-hefner-10162017

The Iran Deal

HUGH HEWITT: "President Trump is right. The Iran deal is the worst deal ever in American history. We got nothing."

Trump has also been right about the judges who have been appointed who I hope can restore the bench's place, and about returning power stolen by the executive branch to the legislative branch, and reducing regulations which have been strangling the economy.

So-so. The tax reform looks weak to me, but we'll see about that as it gets sliced and diced. 

He's been wrong to go after the NFL. Should have just thanked all those players for kneeling in prayer and adoration when the national anthem was played. Could have brought it to a halt.

The Federal Courts web archive

"The federal courts were created under the U.S. Constitution. Article III, Section 1,  provides for the U.S. Supreme Court and such lower courts that Congress may establish. These lower courts include the U.S. courts of appeals, the U.S. district courts and the U.S. Court of International Trade. In addition, other federal courts have been established under Article I, Section 8, of the Constitution, including the U.S. bankruptcy courts, the U.S. Court of Federal Claims, the U.S. Tax Court, the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces."

One could be lost for days and days browsing this resource. I couldn't find immediately the infamous 9th Circuit, but when I clicked on 10th, and browsed that, I found a partial archive of the 9th, ending in August 2016.

Click on the link and see the places you'll go!


You'll be on y our way up!
You'll be seeing great sights!
You'll join the high fliers
who soar to high heights.
Dr. Seuss

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Hierarchy of Angels

Love finding a topic I'd never thought of but which is in the Bible.

Columbus Marathon today

The marathon benefits Children’s Hospital. Everyone is psyched.  Well, not me.  I’m just watching the weather.  Nearly 70 degrees at 5:30 a.m., but windy, and will cool down this afternoon.  I just want to be able to get out and walk.

 It’s good for the brain.

This link only provides the summary, but has an excellent graphic to remind you what lifestyle changes can help your brain. http://pubs.acs.org/doi/pdf/10.1021/acschemneuro.6b00009  You want to stay of the right (green) side, and avoid the lavender/purple.

“Diet, stress, and physical exercise directly act on neural stem cells and/or their progeny, but, in addition, they may also indirectly affect neurogenesis by acting on microglia. Microglia, the guardians of the brain, rapidly sense changes in the brain milieu, and it has been recently shown that their function is affected by lifestyle factors. However, few studies have analyzed the modulatory effect of microglia on adult neurogenesis in these conditions. Here, we review the current knowledge about the dialogue maintained between microglia and the hippocampal neurogenic cascade. Understanding how the communication between microglia and hippocampal neurogenesis is affected by lifestyle choices is crucial to maintain the brain cognitive reserve and prevent the maladaptive responses that emerge during disease or injury through adulthood and aging.”


“Cardiovascular exercise such as running, interval training, cross fit and or yoga are the single most effective ways of boosting neurogenesis; they come with a vast array of health benefits for mind and body, and are also important stress relievers. The endorphins produced acting as a potent antidote to cortisol, the stress hormone. Exercise has been found to increase levels of brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and glial cell line-derived trophic factor (GDNF), two key growth factors supporting neurogenesis.  It also increases hormones such as testosterone which also seem to have a extremely beneficial effect on neurogenesis, and act as a buffer against the effects of psychological stress. This is increasingly more important as we age.”  http://highexistence.com/boost-brain-harnessing-neurogenesis/  Of course, I don't run, but a brisk walk is good, too.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Paying off insurance companies will stop

Congress refused to fund Obamacare, so President Obama just went around them, illegally as the court decided, and gave the money to the insurance companies. Obama knows exactly how to do a left turn to get more power. 1) Get what you want with abusive executive orders, 2) give candy to a toddler realizing the next guy won't take it away because of the tantrums. Unless the next guy is Trump and knows how to deal and says, "I'll give away the executive power Obama stole and hand it back to Congress so you guys have to do your job."

Obama didn't like Congress' decision so he ordered the money from the Treasury, a violation of the ACA law itself. Only Congress has that power. It was found unconstitutional. Trump has put a stop to the illegal actions Obama created and put it back in Congress' lap.

Washington Post described Trump's reversing Obama's illegal stealing money from Treasury to pay insurance companies as "throwing a bomb into the insurance market places." And that, my friends, is how the left destroys our language--with bombs. He has returned the responsibility to Congress which Obama stole from them. When your legacy is executive actions because you overstep your bounds, you risk the next president undoing them.

Nancy Pelosi who actually is in Congress said she has no idea what's in the order, but it is sabotage. A repeat of her not knowing what was in the ACA to begin with but passed it anyway?
The power of the purse belongs to Congress, not President Obama. Trump is draining the swamp and handing Congress back its authority over the purse.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Conestoga trip to Cleveland

Today our Conestoga group toured the Cleveland Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, had a visit with the CEO Greg Harris, ate in the new lunch area, and saw the newly installed (July) Power of Rock film in the renovated I.M. Pei spectacular building. Harris is a charming story teller in his early 50s, obviously in love with his job, and told us about some of the exhibits, including the wedding invitation on which Doc Pomus wrote the words for "Save the Last Dance for Me." He had polio... as a child and couldn't walk, let alone dance, but at his wedding he watched his bride dance with others, and then wrote that song, covered by many, and known by just about everyone who came of age before the 90s. Probably not a dry eye in our group after that one. We had never been there (opened 22 years ago), but it's well worth the trip and brings millions of tourist dollars to Cleveland every year, offsetting the original and renovating costs many times over.

Then we boarded the bus for a short drive to tour the Christmas Story (film) house. The film about Ralphie and his family is based on the book of Jean Shepherd's semi-fictional anecdotes in his 1966 book In God We Trust: All Others Pay Cash. Years after the 1983 film, the house came up for sale on E-Bay and was purchased, then renovated and additional property was bought for a museum and gift house. It opened for visitors in 2006.  It's now quite a popular tourist spot, yet the neighborhood remains much the same.  The docent/employee guide told us that Cleveland was chosen for the set (Shepherd was from Hammond, IN) because Higbee's was the only department store willing to allow them to film the scenes of visiting Santa. That was a year Cleveland didn't have snow, so that is artificial in the Cleveland scenes--and the guide explained how that was done.  Other scenes were filmed in Canada, and there are a few inconsistencies based on the 2 locations, according to our guide.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

When you gotta go. . .

There's construction going on by city workers on our property to repair a culvert. The porta potty is sitting on the sidewalk because there is a steep drop off there and no place for it to sit level. My husband was taking a walk yesterday when a woman jogger flew past him. When she got to the potty, she stopped, opened the door, and used it.

Update:  Yesterday (Oct. 14) I went for a walk and at the drive way met a neighborhood (St. Tim's) woman (named Kathryn) pushing a double wide stroller with her grandchildren.  We stopped to chat because she was catching her breath after the uphill walk.  So I began to help her push the stroller and we walked about a mile until she turned east.  We had a wonderful time.  Later my husband went out for a walk and met the same woman who was then returning the children to their home a mile or so the other direction.  He talked to her a few minutes, and then saw her approach the porta potty and stop.  One of the children needed to go.

Another perspective on guns, guest blogger from Arizona

I live in Arizona halfway between Phoenix and Tucson at the intersection of I8 coming from San Diego and I10 connecting Phoenix and Tucson. I am about 2 hours north of the Mexican border. An Indian reservation stretches from the border all the way to Interstate 8. It is a major drug and human trafficking corridor with about 60% of the drugs coming into the U.S. coming across the Arizona border. I am surrounded by desert and small mountain ranges similar to what you see around Phoenix with Camelback and South Mountain if you’ve ever been there. The population in our area is around 60% Hispanic from many Central American countries with very low income levels, poor English skills and a high number of illegals. We have gangs in the area including MS-13. We have 5 prisons in the area mostly private serving the states of California and Hawaii and an ICE prison. We have an active Border Patrol station here part of the Tucson Sector. People that live here do so because they like the outdoors, nature, climate and of course the scenery including beautiful sunsets and night skies. People love to hike in the desert and mountain climb. Rattlesnakes, wildcats, mountain lions and the cartel members can be encountered on those hikes. It may be hard to believe but most rural roads are still dirt roads.

Having said all that, it is a good place to live. The cost of living is relatively low and access to the cities of Phoenix and Tucson is less than an hour away as is Phoenix Airport. Crime is actually quite low, less than in the larger cities. The biggest issues are robbery and drug related. But, most of the people I know have guns. They carry them while hiking or when traveling in less secure places. They are business owners who are small mom and pop operations. They are ex-military and now gun collectors. They are retired police. They are sheriff auxiliary on patrol with deputies. They are game hunters. They are farm operators with hundreds of acres of open land. They are ordinary people who feel more secure with a gun in the house. There are shooting ranges in the area that are heavily used. People think twice about breaking into a home or starting a confrontation with someone because you never know who has a gun. So in that case it is a deterrent. Most shootings here involve domestic disputes usually around drugs, mental illness or estranged spouses.

Everyone always looks at the mass shooting or violence in the bigger cities but what do you say to my neighbors who have and use guns correctly, for protection or for hunting. How do you structure laws to allow my neighbors to have guns but control mass shootings or inner city killings. I’ve always been taught to look at root causes. In this case is the gun the root cause or is it the laws on the books that are not being enforced or followed? Is it training on the proper use?  Just look at TV and movies and how guns are promoted. Should we start with outlawing video games, or limiting TV violence? It seems to have worked for drinking and smoking on TV shows and commercials.
Truthfully, I’m more frightened about being hit by a drunk driver or impaired driver than by being shot. We have laws against driving impaired, but yet it still happens and people die. What do we do, have laws outlawing cars to prevent drunk people driving them? We seem to be dancing around what to do with driving under drug influences. It’s an emotional issue for those who have been around and used guns all their lives. It reminds me of how traumatic is for someone to have to give up a driver’s license because of age after driving all their lives. A part of your life is being taken away. I also think the discussion is driven by the large number of deaths in any one instance. It’s like one large plane crash where hundreds die being heavily investigated trying to establish fault yet many more smaller plane crashes where one or two people are killed go unnoticed even though the total deaths is more in the single plane crashes.

The wrong questions about immigration; why do we aid Mexico?

We're asking the wrong questions about immigration. Why is Mexico exporting its poor and brown citizens north when it is a wealthy country?
Actually, we know why. Immigrants, legal and illegal, send money home. For Mexico, it's $24.8 billion, higher than oil revenues--and Mexico has a lot of oil. https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/BX.TRF.PWKR.DT.GD.ZS Stop that. It's cheaper than a wall, and more humane.
Have you ever seen a person of color or any ethnic diversity on Telemundo or Univision (both American companies immune from all diversity rules)? Is Mexico working to get rid of its population that is not European heritage? The Mexican government seems to be working with sanctuary cities to make sure they don't get their citizens back, especially the criminal element.
For U.S. businesses, Mexican immigrants are concentrated in service and construction industries and are good workers. For U.S. higher education institutions, Mexican immigrants are a ready source for ambitious students, eligible for aid. About 90% of DACA applicants and renewals are for Mexicans not born in the U.S. 
For the Democrat party, Mexican immigrants are seen as voters to be held close through special favors.

What are the NFL protests about?

 I have some suggestions.
  •  If some players say this is about police, give each man a copy of the FBI Uniform Crime Reports.
  •  If some players say this is about the election, give each man a copy of the constitution and underline the part about the electoral college.
  •  If some players say this is about oppression, give each man a history of the civil rights movement since thousands shed blood in the 1860s, beginning with the formation of the KKK and Jim Crow laws (Democrat party), moving on to the desegregation of the schools and military, on to modern socio-economic statistics, and underscore poverty stats and single moms.
  • If some players say it's about voting rights, show them the black voter turn out in 2008 and 2012 with higher voting rates for blacks than whites.
  • If some think it's about income inequality, hand them a copy of their latest multi-million dollar contract to compare with their high school friends who didn't work as hard or get the scholarships to play in college.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Twitter blocks Rep. Marsha Blackburn

According to Politico and AP, Twitter is barring a top Republican Senate candidate Rep. Marsha Blackburn from advertising her campaign launch video on the service because a line about her efforts to investigate Planned Parenthood was deemed "inflammatory." Really? It's inflammatory to investigate use of fetal tissue, but not to threaten to assassinate the president? https://apnews.com/0d8828bd7d204b40af61172628d0a7f6

Monday, October 09, 2017

Monday Memories--our trip to Illinois and Indiana

We left early Thursday October 5 to make a quick trip to visit the siblings. Due to various frailties, we did a lot of eating out--2 restaurants in Mt. Morris, one in Byron, and one in Indianapolis--which I'll probably notice the next time I step on the scale. 

Brother Stan and me at the new condo in Byron

Stan and Casey with the beautiful view from the deck of their new home

Sister Jeanie and the new puppy, Diva

Getting acquainted with Diva

Niece Joan showing off her new look (lost 86 lbs)

Wednesday, October 04, 2017

Time lapse at sea


30 days of time lapse photography,  about 80,000 photos combined. 1500GB of Project files.  This has been viewed over 2,800,000 times, and I'm sure everyone enjoyed the experience.  Sri Lanka, Singapore, Hong Kong, etc. See how the cargo is loaded, unloaded. You'll feel very, very small.

Social justice warriors are off the leftist cliff

Attacks by the SJW and cultural Marxists are on the rise and going over the edge of reason. Social media assist them in these attacks on other citizens.
“For instance, on July 26, 2017, we [website Intellectual Takeout] published the article “I Was Once Transgender. Why I Think Trump Made the Right Decision for the Military”. The original article was published with a picture of a soldier greeting President Trump, which was acquired through a public domain, military images service. The soldier had nothing to do with the issue, it was just a good photo.

Nonetheless, a mob of people searched for the image online and finally tracked down the name of the soldier. They never checked to see if the name of the soldier in the picture matched the soldier's name who wrote the article. Having found the name, they then went after any public contact information they could find and began an e-mail and phone campaign against the soldier (who had no idea what was going on) to try and get the man removed from the service. The social justice warriors emailed him, his relatives, and both his commanding officers and fellow soldiers, they messaged him, his wife, his friends and relatives through Facebook, they called his military base, his home, and anyone else they could get a hold of, saying all manner of nasty things and attempting to destroy his professional career and social circles. How do we know? He and his wife both called our office and emailed to share the details, bewildered by the hate that they were receiving and begging us to pull the photo, which we did.

Again, that is not an isolated incident.“

Tuesday, October 03, 2017

Are you still blogging?

Have blogs (a diary kept on the internet—web log) died?  Interesting to discover a research article that finds some merit in what I’ve been doing for 14 years. At one time I had 9 blogs, or was it 11? There was my general, catch-all that became increasingly political.  I had a sewing blog, art blog, retirement blog, immigration blog, church blog, health blog, a book blog, a first issue blog.  Many people dropped blogging for the micro-blog of Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, etc. Everyone is in a hurry, no time to write or to read.   I do both—sometimes Facebook my blog, or the other way around, but those short twits are too confining.

I still read a lot of blogs—political or craft or religious, usually. I love the quilting how-to blogs and the theology blogs.  As more and more became corporate or sponsored or cluttered with ads, they became less interesting.  But I’m still going—with no ads. That would be like work, and I’m retired.


Monday, October 02, 2017

That so-called white privilege

Millions of Americans are designated white by the U.S. Census Bureau that perhaps you, especially on the academic left, have not recognized, such as Asian Indians, Lebanese, Syrians, Armenians, Jordanians, Iraqi, Kurds, Turkish, Egyptians, not just Irish and German ethnicity. Remember this the next time a college instructor hoping to get attention and tenure maligns or tries to "gaslight" white Americans of west or north European ancestry.

And interestingly, many of these "also white" ethnicities have higher incomes than European Americans. The highest is Indian Americans, like our current UN ambassador Nikki Haley, former governor of South Carolina and daughter of immigrants--their household income is over $107,000, (real U.S. median household income was $59,039 in 2016) whereas my poor Irish Americans are #48 at $64,525. Most of the Indian Americans are very entrepreneurial and focused on education, and most households are married couples. Work, education and marriage--it's a formula that can't be beat. Even Nigerian Americans are above Irish Americans, with a household income of $76,172 and 72.2% of the households are married couples. Census.gov

 Married couples with children under 18 years of age, according to the Census Bureau's Current Population Survey (Table HINC-04), made an average household income of $107,054 in 2013 and a median household income of $85,087. Married couples with NO children under 18 had an average household income of $91,870 in 2013 and a median household income of $70,995. Unmarried couples with children under 18 had an average household income of $65,337 and a median of $50,031. Call me crazy, but I think marriage and children have a positive effect on income and well being. Why do married couples with children do better financially than all others? "Perhaps it is because they are not primarily driven by greed but something quite the opposite: a willingness to make sacrifices so their children may live better lives."


Sunday, October 01, 2017

Roe v. Wade

"We had an unplanned and unexpected pregnancy in the 70’s when abortion was rampant. And we gave serious thought to going that direction. We were young and active, just out of college and just getting started. We wanted children, but not right then. We decided against termination. Please indulge my “what if” for a moment:

“What If”‘ we had chosen abortion? There would be 4 grandsons I would not know, one of which I watched as a junior in high school pitch in his team’s first district baseball game of the season last Saturday. I would not be able to watch he and his next youngest brother play together on their high school football team that will be looking for their 15th State Championship in the Fall. (They won their 14th State High School championship last year) I would not know their 11 year old brother who is already becoming an accomplished pianist and song writer. Nor would I know their “little” brother, who at 8 years old is the most active, most outgoing and happy young man I’ve ever known, and is already a phenomenal athlete.

I would have not known their Mom who is one of the most amazing women alive today. She is brilliant, focused, hard working, hopelessly devoted to her family, and is the loving glue that holds our extended family together, plans every function and is an organizational and artistic genius. One other “what if” is probably the most sobering: we would be buried in the guilt of knowing we missed all of these people that would have been our descendants because we chose abortion. My “what ifs” are a bit scary. Think for a moment about yours." https://dnewman.org/roe-v-wade/

I want to be like Betty when I grow up

We went to Scotland for a week in June and our friends Howard and Betty, 82, who are in our couples group at church went to England, Wales and Scotland the last two weeks of August so they could see Tattoo, which we missed since it only performs in late summer.

"How was the vacation?"  "Oh it was wonderful!"  Except. . .

Howard had his wallet stolen with their credit cards and cash early in the trip. People on the tour offered them money to tide them over, but they watched every penny, bought no souvenirs, and made do with the cash Betty had.  His wallet was in a zippered leg pocket with a Velcro strip and he never felt the hand that took it until dinner.

Returning to the USA from Heathrow they boarded the plane to fly home, via Houston, and no one mentioned the Hurricane. They were told it was raining.

Theirs was the last plane in and then the airport was closed, and they had to find a hotel in a strange city because none of them would take the vouchers United provided.

Betty is being treated for a serious illness and had no more medicine left by the time they got to the US, and what she did have needed to be refrigerated.

When they finally found one by using Howard's I-pad to make a reservation and using the United van, it was a suite, with a refrigerator, but there were no cooking utensils or dishes. And there was no way to get food anyway, since they couldn't leave the hotel, and even if they could, everything was closed. The hotel experienced some leaking, but not in their room  and it was on the second floor which was good because the elevator was no longer working. The hotel was still serving breakfast, which got smaller each day since no supplies were coming in.

Howard became extremely ill while they were in the hotel, and they had to go to the ER, in a strange city, with almost everything closed. Before the trip he had photocopied all their medical cards, credit cards, passport, etc.

Betty told the clerk at the desk, who had only been working a day or two their dilemma, and she knew of a hospital open in her neighborhood and offered to drive them there after her shift. (There are angels out there). Because he had the photocopies, he was able to get through the paper work even with having had his wallet stolen.

Howard was treated in the ER, and given a prescription for an antibiotic, but the city was on lock down after 8 p.m. to prevent looting and they couldn't get it filled.

Meanwhile their daughter got them reservations on the first flight out of Houston to Chicago when the rain and storm let up and they were able to get out of town 3 days sooner than what they thought.

Neither one is quite well yet, but for 82, that isn't bad.

But it was a wonderful trip, with enough stories to last a lifetime.

Hello October

Meritocracy, the latest target

I caught the tail end of a Fox story on "meritocracy is a white myth" by yet another professor with pink out of control hair offering a class/workshop on how terrible American culture is. The idea that hard work merits advancement is just so much doggy poo. But then if you google it, you see this has been building at least for 10 years in the media elite like Atlantic and NYT. After all, Jenna Bush and Chelsea Clinton or even George Stephanopolous, a political operative of the Clinton years, didn't get their cushy TV jobs through merit--it was family, influence or money, or maybe all three. What goes around comes around, and soon the journalists who were writing about it 5 years ago, will become the latest victims of the Leftist smears, tossed aside after they are no longer useful, because they didn't deserve their jobs or graduating from Columbia or Berkeley.