Friday, May 31, 2019

Guilty of being white with no license to exist

How crazy is academe (choose that college carefully)? Dorothy Kim, an assistant professor of English at Vassar, demanded that all faculty who specialize in Middle Ages use their classrooms to address white supremacy and assure their students "you are not a white supremacist." Diversity! Inclusion! Intersectionality! Of course, this is impossible. Being an English speaking person of European heritage will always brand one--usually as a toxic male, but women get smeared, too. Kim demanded her colleagues in the rather esoteric specialty take a side because not taking a side is choosing a side. Crazy totalitarian battleground classrooms. Faculty drunk with power over their students. People of fair and light skin are being marginalized and bullied--for existing. So is it the behavior and the hate, or the ethnicity that makes bullying and prejudice wrong?

This is a link to a very biased article, written by someone named Xu for the Vassar paper.

A different point of view—I think this is a gay publication.

Thursday, May 30, 2019

Mueller Report

Is there a pay gap, are teachers underpaid, and why do Democrats run on issues that are settled law?

“2020 Democratic presidential contender Sen. Kamala Harris is on a mission to close the pay gap for America's teachers, something she says is "not a partisan issue." Harris, who unveiled her new plan to increase the pay for public school teachers nationwide with a $13,500 pay raise, told "CBS This Morning" on Tuesday that "for too long" teachers have been paid "substandard wages" and are "not being paid their value to us as a society."” (CBS News)

Why do Democrats campaign on issues settled in law--will more laws help? Teacher pay gap? Local schools set those salaries, not the Department of Education (a federal agency that doesn't need to exist). Public school teachers according to BLS earn $63/hour (with benefits)--if they lie about teachers, then they lie about engineers and plumbers.

The "equal pay for equal work" law was passed over 50 years ago. When women continued to choose jobs that were easier, less risky, closer to home, and child-friendly, the feminists decided it became "equal pay for equal value" and what is that? Of course, a day care worker's job is valuable, but is it as valuable as an RN with an advanced degree or an entry level teacher?

What happens when you compare women with women? I was a librarian, one of the lowest paid jobs that requires an advanced degree, and dominated by women. Who is the commissar of jobs in DC who will decide that entry level Alabama librarians should be paid the same as chefs with 20 years experience in Chicago or a petroleum engineer in Alaska?

Tribalism, South Sudan, and Us

Tribal. I'm again reminded of what the left is attempting in our culture. Two weeks ago at church we hosted the president of The Lutheran Church of South Sudan and he explained the terrible losses among the Christians, who after finally gaining independence from the predominantly Muslim Sudan after decades of oppression and civil war, have returned to their tribal state and are killing each other in tribal warfare and terrorism.

Yesterday I checked out from the library "A rope from the sky; the making and unmaking of the world's newest State," (2019) by Zach Vertin. The author worked in Sudan and DC (Obama administration) and has both a local and western viewpoint on the unfolding tragedy.

Vertin doesn't expose this (obviously a liberal), but going or returning to tribal instincts is essential in what is also happening in the U.S. Diversity, multiculturalism, intersectionality, inclusion, equity, social justice, liberation, revolution, reparations, tolerance are all agenda words that really mean divide and conquer. That's what every IED (Inclusion, Equity, Diversity) department in college or business is about. Divide; get people to fight each other. Women against men, black against white, gay against straight, trans against drag, college educated against less educated, blue collar against degreed, urban against rural, patriot against globalist, Protestant against Catholic, mainline against evangelical, vegetarian against meat eating, animal rights against pet owners, fit against fat--any excuse imaginable to keep the political divide going.

Being a librarian, I always check table of contents, index and bibliography first to see if a title will be worth my time. Christianity was not listed in the index so I could cherry pick what I wanted to read, but I did find a few paragraphs on p. 119, not bad for a political writer. He does say,

"Amid a history of war and division, church leaders have often been voices of reason and reconciliation. But the legacy of divvying up the map between denominations has also complicated the work and perceptions of church leaders, as no institution has remained immune to politics and polarization.'

So far I haven't found any interviews of priests, pastors or missionaries--and as evidenced by his basketball player talk (Vertin is 6'5" and dwarfed by Sudan's players) and lost boys dreaming about their cattle--he's very good at that.

Lori—from Obama to Trump

She had never paid much attention to politics, but did vote for Obama his first term.  From the WalkAway Facebook page.

“One of the things that appealed to us about Obama was healthcare. We had a child with pre existing conditions and were paying a $600 per month additional premium on him. We wanted Obamacare and not to have to pay that extra premium anymore. Well, what a lie that turned out to be. Not only did the extra premium not go away for our child with a pre existing condition, but we had to pay more every month and it has steadily increased ever since!

We became small business owners during Obama’s first term and this is what really started opening our eyes to Democrats not being good for small business. We were providing jobs but being taxed to death and providing affordable healthcare for our employees is almost impossible. We did not vote for Obama his second term mainly for business and health care reasons, but still did not wise up that the media had a liberal agenda. What woke me up to the lefts true agenda was the Media when Trump announced his candidacy. I could not understand why the media was so hateful towards him. I just couldn’t believe the hate and why wasn’t the media being neutral?! I could not stand to watch the news because if it. I became a supporter of Trump early on because I agreed with everything he was saying.”

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

The back row in America

Chris Arnade, a Wall Street bond trader, had a pretty lofty view of himself. He was an atheist, and a progressive. This is from his new book, "Dignity: Seeking Respect in Back Row America," Sentinel, 2019.

"Like most successful and well-educated people, especially in New York City, I considered myself open-minded, considerate, and reflective about my privilege. I read three ­papers daily, I watched documentaries on our social problems, and I voted for and supported policies that I felt recognized and addressed my privilege. I gave money and time to charities that focused on ­poverty and injustice. I understood that I was ­selfish, but I rationalized. Aren’t we all selfish? ­Besides, I am far less selfish than others. Look at how I vote (­progressive), what I believe in (equality), and who my colleagues are (people of all races from all ­places)."

And so he begins traveling, photographing and talking to "back row America" and discovers that those in the front row don't have all the answers.

You can read this excerpt on-line,

Chris Arnade writes for many publications.  In this article in the Guardian he is skin color focused, and he blames Trump for exploiting the pain and humiliation of the poor [but not Hillary?].  However, he gets a lot right in this article published shortly before the Nov. 2016 election--why Trump is supported by the working (and not working) poor.

"She was blunt when I asked her about her life. “Clarington is a shithole. Jobs all left. There is nothing here anymore. When Ormet Aluminum factory closed, jobs all disappeared.” She is also blunt about the pain in her life. “I have five kids and two have addictions. There is nothing else for kids to do here but drugs. No jobs. No place to play.”

She stopped and added: “I voted for Obama the first time, not the second. Now I am voting for Trump. We just got to change things.”"

And Trump is changing things, and that is terrifying for the progressives who are willing to give away the country economically, socially and culturally. What he says about education rings true to me.  Who would want to give up their position at the top?

The battling deferments, Biden and Trump

Hugh Hewitt has an interesting take on Mayor Pete bringing up Trump's deferments 50 years ago as a way to denigrate him. It's a way, he said, to take out Biden by letting the press and social media do it. You see, Joe Biden had 5 deferments and the same classification as Trump, 1Y (called up only in a national emergency). That clown car is very crowded and someone needs to be thrown under the bus (pardon the mixed metaphors) and right now, Biden is riding high in the polls, and staying very quiet.

Democrats tried to go after Cheney on deferments, but never said anything about Presidents Clinton and Obama.  Obama didn’t need a deferment, but then he also didn’t serve in the military as we had an all volunteer military by then.

Most deferments were for education.  My husband had 3 for being in college and 2 for paternity.  But deferments weren’t fair, either.  He lived in a very large city; rural communities had a more difficult time giving deferments.  Then finally all married men were deferred, so maybe that’s 6.  Women were always deferred from the draft.

Monday, May 27, 2019

The No-Fear Act

I had never heard of the No FEAR act until I came across it in a government document. "On May 15, 2002, Congress enacted the ‘‘Notification and Federal Employee Antidiscrimination and Retaliation Act of 2002,’’ which is now known as the No FEAR Act. One purpose of the No FEAR Act is to ‘‘require that Federal agencies be accountable for violations of antidiscrimination and whistleblower protection laws.’’ Pub. L. 107–174, Summary. In support of this purpose, Congress found that ‘‘agencies cannot be run effectively if those agencies practice or tolerate discrimination.’’ Pub. L. 107– 74, Title I, General Provisions, section 101(1)." So I looked at the 2019 report to see what was going on in violations of the various protection laws, and see that since 2016 the complaints have dropped about 1/3. Didn't see that any resulted in a finding of discrimination after a lengthy investigation and hearing.

The Dear John letter

This isn't exactly a Memorial Day tale, but. . . I was talking to a Vietnam vet today about church. He’d never heard of Lakeside, Ohio, which is a Chautauqua community originating as a Methodist Campground.  He said he grew up Catholic--attended church 6 days a week. I asked him when was the last time he'd been to confession, and he said 1967. He was in Vietnam and went to confession. The next day he got a "Dear John" letter from his fiancé who had become pregnant by another man while he was gone. He never went back to church, and he has no idea what became of his fiancé or the baby, except the new boyfriend dropped her.  He must not have grown up in a small town—people never forget those things, or what happened to whom, when and why.

I had the feeling she didn’t follow these instructions.

96 cherries in every bottle!

Not everyone reads full page magazine ads for products new to her. I do, especially if my friend Sonja just told me how many tart cherries must be in a cherry pie by law. This product, a juice drink called Cherrish, has 96 cherries (pulp, skin, and juice) in one 12 oz. bottle! The nearest store to me is in Las Vegas, so if I want to try it, I suppose it will be via Amazon. I don't have symptoms of exercise induced muscle damage, but who knows, some day I may work hard enough at the gym to get that. . .

Speaking of cherries, I just bought a pound of sweet cherries--just gorgeous and delicious--for $2.99/lb at Marc's. Not sure they will last until lunch time.

Happy Birthday, Mom

My mother would be 107 today. It's hard to imagine, and also to believe she's been gone since 2000. Our family never made much of a fuss about birthdays when I was growing up, and I can recall only a few times I was with her to celebrate during adulthood. I saw her for 2 days in late May of 1993 when I came out from Chicago after an MLA conference, but then she left for the DC area to see a granddaughter graduate, so I can't remember if we did anything to celebrate. Perhaps she celebrated it jointly with Julie. Then in the late 90s my sister and I both came in May and spent time with her.

And today is also the 3-day week-end date for Memorial Day, the last Monday in May instead of May 30 which was the date from 1868 to 1971--certainly enough years for me to adjust. It was originally a day to honor the Civil War dead--and there is still some controversy about that--however, now the tradition is to decorate the graves of family and friends, but also attend parades to honor war dead. In a letter to her cousin in Iowa, Marianne [posted at my blog], "Mom fretted a little on Memorial Day 1975 that she and her sister were the only ones left to place flowers at the grave sites of parents and brother, grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins, something their mother had always done." I hope my brother is able to get to Ashton to continue the family tradition of our parents and grandparents, and that my sister will place some flowers on the graves in Plainview in Mt. Morris.

Mom actually had a great uncle Jacob, the brother of her grandfather David, who died in the service during the Civil War, but if my grandmother, her mother knew that, she never told my mom. His birth and death dates are not in the family Bible. He was born in 1848 and died in May 1865, just weeks before the end of the war. He's buried in the National Cemetery in Nashville [Section J, grave 14379]. Mom and her sister found out about this 120 years later through a cousin in Iowa who still owned a letter he'd written from a prison camp. He was only 16 years old when he enlisted.

We are usually at our lake home over Memorial Day Week-end and here's a collection of the blogs I've written about it.

Sunday, May 26, 2019

Abortion’s link to breast cancer

Women should be told about the relationship between induced abortion and breast cancer. And so should researchers who look only at race, income and social safety net. In the 1950s black women and white women were married at about the same percentage, but that changed with the War on Poverty and drastically by the late 1990s. Until the late 1950s black women had lower breast cancer mortality rates than white--even with aggressive segregation, more poverty, poor housing, and limits to education. And guess what else changed? Higher abortion rates for black women than white when Uncle Sam became the sugar daddy.

Saturday, May 25, 2019

We’re all safe.

If we're on your prayer list, thanks. It never hurts to be preemptive. We're OK. The fire has been put out, and we had some clean up. The cottage odor is a combination of Febreze, scented candles and burned butter. We had a wonderful meal at Sortino's (Sandusky, OH) on Thursday evening and came home with 5 carry out bags + bread. However, the 20" stove in our summer home wouldn't quite hold everything when we tried to warm up dinner the next evening and (we're blaming Bob) some fettuccini alfredo over flowed, dripping butter, which then caught on fire. The four of us in the tiny kitchen (think Keystone Cops) were a hoot, with Phoebe rescuing our dinner from the flames and Mark squelching the fire. It is cleaning week-end so we then had fine soot over our freshly washed cabinets, counters, and floors. BUT. No one was hurt and there's no permanent damage. Supper was delicious once we all settled down, and I think there's enough for tonight's dinner. I do plan to buy a new stove, though.

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

The end of women’s sports

"If you know sport, you know this beyond a reasonable doubt: there is an average 10-12 percent performance gap between elite males and elite females," Coleman and Shreve wrote in an analysis published online.

"The gap is smaller between elite females and non-elite males, but it's still insurmountable and that's ultimately what matters," they wrote.

"Translating these statistics into real world results," they wrote, "we see, for example, that: Just in the single year 2017, Olympic, World and U.S. Champion Tori Bowie's 100 meters lifetime best of 10.78 was beaten 15,000 times by men and boys.”

Venting on stupidity in Washington

Why do billionaires like Soros, Steyer, Bezos, Zuckerburg, Brin, et. al. support the Democrats? It's good for business, and they are first and foremost capitalists and globalists. The more heavy handed government control, the less competition they'll have because smaller companies won't be able survive.

Since November 2016 the Democrats have done nothing but try to impeach the President and have accomplished nothing for the country. The Mueller report is out and they are still at it. The Democrats are rushing to impeach because the investigation of the Obama regime's spying is coming down the pike. (Caller to Mike Gallagher show--paraphrased). Good point. And that may have been the motive behind the entire phony investigation.

"We no longer live in a constitutional republic. We live in an idiocracy. Only in modern-day America, under the Democratic-controlled U.S. House of Representatives, is the basic proposition that federally subsidized public housing should benefit American citizens and legal residents slammed as “despicable” and “damaging.” " Michelle Malkin

Women are marching in support of killing other women's children. Whatever moral authority women may have had in the past, it's gone forever.  The pro-lifers marching outside the clinics are the abolitionists of the 21st century. The pro-choicers bragging about their abortions at rallies are the slave traders of the 18th century.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

If you think Trump divided your family, abortion is worse

From a Facebook acquaintance:

“Up until this week, we have navigated the differences in political positions within the family without major upsets. We have weathered liberal children, weathered acceptance of a gay son and his partner (love the partner as he’s a great guy). However, this week, the position young women are taking “triggered” deeply held beliefs about the unborn child. We both support abortion up until a point of viability, but not after. Our daughter reposted something after the Alabama law was signed which essentially said: get over yourself, forget what you learned in church, they are only cells.

My response first said that I disagreed with the Alabama law as eight weeks is far too son for some women to even realize they are pregnant and miscarriages are quite common in first trimester. Should have stopped there but I didn’t.

I said do not be dismissive of other people’s beliefs. I went own to say that I don’t consider the fetus just cells when it rolls, kicks, punches, sucks it’s thumb, and moves away from the ultrasound wand. Next, is where I went a step too far in saying, but believing, if you can dismiss this, I question your humanity. I would love to post the exact wording but I have been blocked, unfriendly, and she has enlisted her brother and her sister’s husband to do the same. This is my step daughter who is 30. We have had a very close relationship for 20 years. She has considered me her mom over her natural mother because mom is unstable.

I am a bit angry and disappointed. She’s most likely hurt (mom would have never said these things to her). Yet, other than the unfortunate choice of words, women celebrating their abortions have really set me off as it is not something to celebrate. I think of all the couples who want a child and cannot get pregnant and/or carry an infant to term, and I feel for them at the callousness of someone dismissing the fetus as “just cells”. “

Trump supporters are compared to KKK and Nazis by—who else—failed entertainers

The latest was Jeff Daniels who hasn’t been seen since Full House emptied.

What is it about smaller government, lower taxes, a vibrant economy, a secure border, honest judges, employment for minorities and ex-felons, a growing conservative black middle class, babies who survive womb warfare, and more freedom that terrifies Democrats and they lapse into "Nazi" and "racist" when faced with the successes of the last two years?

One would think they knew nothing about their own history!! Jim Crow, pushing fathers out of the home, ignoring crime, bringing in drugs over the border to destroy the young, destroying small businesses with regulation to protect the big corporations from competition. Wake up!

Monday, May 20, 2019

In the spirit of vote buying

I think we all knew they wouldn't stop with statues of Confederate war heroes, which previous presidents have declared U.S. veterans and whose descendants were eligible for pensions and benefits. When it suits them and they need the votes, Democrats can be quite forgiving and tender-hearted. They will pardon draft dodgers and war time deserters (Carter, Truman, FDR, Obama). The last Democrat in the White House even bequeathed billions to our enemy Iran—bundles of cash in the dark of night.

Democrat party supporters and fund raisers in the entertainment world will perpetrate the worst form of violence, sexism and destruction of innocent human life--all for the bread and circus of votes. And for the same reason, they'll attack long deceased founders and heroes of our nation.

Is it too early, or too late, to condemn the writers, directors, producers and actors of "Game of Thrones" and their addicted followers for their fascination with violence, rape, incest and racism (a pretense to care about climate change and women's moral authority), when surely in such enlightened times as these and contemporary political climate of MeToo-ism they should have known better? Isn’t it the product of 2 white guys?

The lame never Trumpers support the Democrats

Michael Smith has figured out the plan: "You just scrape up two dozen losers who are so radical or unknown there is no way they can be elected to soak up all the support from the socialist/mentally ill morons and then toss in 76 year-old two time loser and Democrat establishment life-member Joe Biden, who was once rated as one of the most progressive members of the Senate during his 36 years there, but now looks reasonable in comparison.


But then, there was a crowded field in 2015-2016--strongest bench ever for Republicans, and one by one they went down until the totally unexpected happened. And he is accomplishing everything Republicans claimed they wanted-- a flourishing economy, conservative judges all over the nation, removal of the hated mandate, saving babies who are our future, and standing up to our enemies--and boy, are they mad about that.

Sunday, May 19, 2019

Lutheran Church of South Sudan

Our Sunday School class today had the opportunity to hear Rev. Jordan Long, President of the Lutheran Church of South Sudan, and to hear about some REAL persecution which in turn is spreading the gospel to the refugee camps of millions of Sudanese who have fled the violence to neighboring countries. During their civil war 2.5 million were killed, and now that they have their own country (primarily Christian) and aren't fighting the Arab Muslims who oppressed them, they are fighting each other! All politics is based on family and tribes, he said, and it is that way in all of Africa.

Three members of our church had traveled to South Sudan to observe and learn about opportunities there for service. They are endless! But as I listened I recognized the problems in our own country--how even in times of peace there will be people who sow doubt and anger in order to obtain or keep power. Their tribal system reminded me how our powerful Democrat and Republican "families" and tribes in D.C. or the state capitals don't want to give up their power.

The Lutheran Church of South Sudan has started a seminary, and because there are 64 languages spoken in that small country, all instruction is in English, which is also taught in the high schools. Sometimes we Americans don't appreciate the beauty or unity of having a single language--and there are even trouble makers among us, especially academe, who claim it's xenophobic and racist to be unified that way.

Five years ago they had a handful of students meeting under a tree, and now have buildings and 2700 students. They are moving ahead with western partners for pure water, "welcoming" bath rooms, and computers for their computer room in the seminary.

Graduation speaker pushing liberal agenda. What’s new?

Janice Shaw Crouse notes: "Commencement speaker at Bucknell graduation (invited by the all-female student officers). Former Secretary of State and distinguished political leader, Madeleine Albright. No conservative students showed disrespect and none protested. I sat and listened. Her remarks were typically biased and disappointingly progressive ideology — never missed an opportunity to disparage conservatives and American values. Very limited sporadic, unenthusiastic applause. How awful to use this occasion to push a radical agenda!"

And liberals don’t get it!

“Bucknell University's 169th Commencement celebration will be held on the Malesardi Quadrangle on Sunday, May 19, beginning at 10 a.m.”

The photo must be 25 years old at least.

Friday, May 17, 2019

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Five lifestyles which will prolong your life. . . maybe

Have you ever seen this statement--"Americans have a shorter life expectancy compared with residents of almost all other high-income countries." I wish they'd qualify that by race, ethnicity, immigration status and age. Are Swedish Americans less healthy than ethnic Swedes in Sweden? Finnish Americans worse off than those born in Helsinki? German Americans? Drugs, auto accidents, and gun deaths wipe out a big swath of young Americans which unfortunately drastically alters our life expectancy national statistics. Losing weight, eating a healthy diet, and exercising more are good for you as an individual, but probably won't change national statistics as long as those 3 killers are present.

Here's what the journal "Circulation" determined: "Adherence to 5 low-risk lifestyle-related factors (never smoking, a healthy weight, regular physical activity, a healthy diet, and moderate alcohol consumption) could prolong life expectancy at age 50 years by 14.0 and 12.2 years for female and male US adults compared with individuals who adopted zero low-risk lifestyle factors."

Simple, right? Popular health journals and websites (usually sponsored by pharmaceutical companies) have jumped on that one. Buckets of articles and bags of advice have come from that. But. As young adults, people (like me in the 1960s or my parents in the 1930s) observing those five lifestyles were probably not involved in violent gangs, car chases while drunk, stealing to support an opioid habit, or eating wings at the local bar and washing them down with 12 beers several times a week. Those five lifestyles often include a monogamous marriage, higher education levels, stable jobs, church attendance, strong family and friend relationships. It's not that grandma who smoked like a chimney and drank six beers a day didn't live to be 105, or that cousin Ralph dropped dead jogging at age 40, but they are the exception.

I haven't read the whole article, but I know how it will be cited: support take over by the government of our health insurance because look how unhealthy Americans are. Studies in countries with socialized medicine that compare their healthiest and their least healthy show the same spread as the U.S. and that there are income gaps, education disparity and socio-economic differences which government health insurance doesn't change.

This article is free access.  “Circulation” is one of the best peer reviewed journals you can read on cardiovascular issues.

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

New book recommendation about higher education for your Public Library

Richard Vedder, "Restoring the Promise; Higher Education in America" his final points.

  • "College administrative staff often exceeds the teaching staff. Vedder says, “I doubt there is a major campus in America where you couldn’t eliminate very conservatively 10% of the administrative payroll (in dollar terms) without materially impacting academic performance.”
  • Reevaluate academic tenure. Tenure is an employment benefit that has costs, and faculty members should be forced to make trade-offs between it and other forms of university compensation.
  • Colleges of education, with their overall poor academic quality, are an embarrassment on most campuses and should be eliminated.
  • End speech codes on college campuses by using the University of Chicago principles on free speech.
  • Require a core curriculum that incorporates civic and cultural literacy.
  • The most important measure of academic reforms is to make university governing boards independent and meaningful. In my opinion, most academic governing boards are little more than yes men for the president and provost."

As reported by Walter E. Williams "Smart Ways to Make College Cheaper and Better," Daily Signal, May 15  A YouTube of Vedder’s lecture on this topic.  Very little has changed since I went to college in the 1960s, except for the soaring costs, and I didn't have to take any diversity or retraining classes.

He reports that “Harvard and Bridgewater State are 15 miles apart--Bridgewater is a better school" (audience laughs). I looked it up--Harvard is 5X more expensive than Bridgewater.

Vedder says had been teaching for 53 years (he’s emeritus at Ohio University) and was told he needed to report for "diversity training" and he refused.  He says University of Michigan has 93 diversity coordinators and wonders if black and Hispanic students are better off. I think OSU beats that, and has more. But IED departments are not intended to help minorities and women, they are intended to punish and terrorize the white majority and provide jobs for administrative staff who graduated with "studies" degrees (my comment, not his).

There's a war against white males on American campuses. Alumni--check out your donor status and demand a change. One question from the audience was from a parent who said her son was required to take a course on "Climate Change" at his college which was not taught by any professor and contained no science, only opinion and popular magazines. She wants her money back! I don't blame her.

The Left eats its own

One of the Leftists' own is an infamous lecher (Harvey Weinstein), so they don't want another of their own (Dean Ronald Sullivan of impeccable leftist credentials and also black) to defend him so Harvard fired him. Both conservatives and liberals are crying foul--some liberals have even discovered academic freedom and diversity of thought, something they won't allow for conservatives, in defending Sullivan.

List of new judges appointed in 2017-2019

Usually, I don't site Wikipedia as a source, because of the bias of the contributor (often liberal), but in this case, for a list of PresidentTrump era appointees to the courts, it's the best source. The Supreme Court gets the most attention (Gorsuch and Kavanaugh), but he's also flipping the lower courts, and they are young, and on the side of the Constitution. Yea! Look it over.

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Congress woman Tlaib is just wrong

Rashida Tlaib, the Michigan Congress woman of "Palestinian" ancestry, was definitely NOT taken out of context in her hurtful, hateful comments on Yahoo News about the holocaust, Israel and Jews. Democrats who are defending her are on their way to apologizing for the Nazis, the National Socialist party of Germany, just as over the years they accepted and apologized for former KKK members into their ranks.

The Jews are the modern indigenous people of Israel, not the Arabs who call themselves Palestinians. The Jews are the original Palestinians--they have 3,000 years of history on that tiny speck of land in a sea of Islamic countries. Israel gained independence from Britain in 1948 and the people who now call themselves Palestinians didn't exist. They were a group of Arabs who needed an identity and the rest of the Arab world didn't want them except as a tool in their war chest. It was the UN that gave the Jews that tiny piece of land which they turned into a magnificent, fruitful country.

So if the Palestinians of recent origin have a complaint it is with the entire Arab world and the UN. They could have participated in the new country that offered them health, education, freedom of religion, the right to be elected to the national parliament, freedom of speech, employment, equal rights for women and gays--all the things they can't have in Arab countries where they live in camps, but they chose to be controlled by Hamas and to be mistreated and weaponized by Arab states that hate Jews.

If the Arab world powers had accepted the 1947 UN partition plan, there would not be a single Palestinian refugee today living in camps--a terrible mistake. But it has suited the Jew-haters, including many American Jews and Christians. The Arab world could take in these Arab refugees who call themselves Palestinians, they could give them the rights they have in Israel, but they won't (although most Arab countries don't have those rights even for their own citizens).

Israel is a country which has over 6 million Jews, and nearly half are Israeli by country of origin and the rest are Jews with origins from Africa, Russia, Asia, Europe and North America. 20% of Israel is Arab by ancestry, mostly Sunni Moslem. 10% are Druze (11th c. Islamic sect, not Arab). About 10% of Israel's population is Christian of different sects--Catholic, Protestant, Orthodox. The principle of equal rights for all Israeli citizens–including minorities–is expressed explicitly in the Israeli Declaration of Independence.

Jewish Arabs have had to flee their homelands of hundreds of years and take refuge in Israel, but the Arab countries won't take the Palestinian Arabs. For 70 years the Arab countries have kept the original 700,000 refugees and all their descendants in stateless camps. The Arabs do not want this problem solved, so Ms. Tlaib's argument and hostility should be directed at them.

Monday, May 13, 2019

The TV swap

The average 32-inch LCD TV sold for $435 in the second quarter of 2012, down from $495 in Q1. Today I bought a Toshiba 32' LCD TV for $100.99 (clearance). Will be delivered free. We'll take our older 32” to the lake and keep the new one here. I thought 19” since I don’t watch much TV there, but was voted down.  Even if I’d wanted a 50” (wouldn’t fit), they were under $400. 

Sunday, May 12, 2019

A different sort of Mother's Day

We had a wonderful time with the Halls and Mallettes from California (we met in Scotland in 2017) touring our great city, the OSU campus, enjoying 2 great museums, the new National Veterans Memorial and Museum and the Columbus Museum of Art, the OSU main library, historic German Village and eating at Schmidt's Sausage House and Cap City Fine Diner. We get to rest today, but they are touring for 2 more weeks! Robin thinks up the ideas and Gene plans the itinerary. Today they are off to Falling Water, Gettysburg, Niagara Falls, the 9-11 memorial and other sites. We ended the day with a peaceful evening and dessert at our home, looking through Bob's paintings and sharing stories and memories.

Saturday, May 11, 2019

It’s not your mother’s Democratic Party

"Today, the survival of the liberal establishment depends upon hyper-moralized political correctness and the relentless search for racist transgressions and crimes of exclusion. Over the last generation, rich voters have shifted to the Democratic party. After the 2018 midterms, the Democratic party holds the ten richest congressional districts and 41 of the fifty richest. Whatever remains of the New Deal rationale for the Democratic party has evaporated. It used to be the party of the working man. Now it's the party of Silicon Valley. This necessitates shifting political energy toward anti-discrimination imperatives, all of which REQUIRE discrimination in order to maintain their salience."

". . . Aggressive, minute, and punitive political correctness . . .serves a political need. The Democratic party is the party of the rich. That fact must be disguised, and thus the public square echoes with dog whistles warning of discrimination. White nationalism! Toxic masculinity! This serves to keep immigrants, women, and minorities in a state of constant fear, calling them to come under the protection of the liberal establishment."

". . . Our ruling liberal elite NEEDS racism, sexism, homophobia, and the rest. As a result, the institutions they dominate--mainstream media, universities, the art world, large corporations, and the Democratic party--devise theories, imagery, and rhetoric to ensure that bigotry and "hate" endure forever." R.R. Reno, First Things, April 2019, p. 62

The churches and BDS

IF you attend a liberal, mainline church (can be either Catholic or Protestant) you'll hear about BDS (boycott-divestment-sanctions) as a response to Israel. It's plain and simple Arab anti-Semitism and you've been snookered. Its advocates swarm on college campuses, social media and late night TV. Liberals particularly seem to love BDS. The objective is the killing of Jews and returning those who are left to the statelessness of pre-1948. I don't know exactly how they got such a foothold in academe, the founder, Omar Barghouti attended university in the U.S., so we must have birthed him. Can someone shake the money tree?

Which churches?

Here’s the ELCA, Evangelical Lutheran Church of America, a merger of 1988 of 3 major Lutheran synods.  Our church, UALC is no long in that synod.

Here’s Church of the Brethren, UCC, Disciples of Christ,  UMC, Presbyterian Church (USA)

Friday, May 10, 2019

Record black unemployment

The black unemployment rate, 6.7%, is the lowest ever recorded, but that's not how liberals/progressives see it. USA Today asks, "Why is unemployment for blacks 86% above the national average, and 116% above whites." Don't you love statistics? Not a mention in the USA Today article about 2010 black unemployment under Obama was 16.8%. It also notes the number of blacks in prison (1,609 per 100,000) compared to whites (274 per 100,000) and the difficulty in obtaining jobs with a prison record, without noting that blacks have an 8x higher crime rate than whites. Anything they can find to diminish Trump's accomplishments.

Higher minimum wage laws hurt minorities, youth and small businesses.

President Trump and the opioid crisis

  • President Trump launched an Initiative to Stop Opioid Abuse and Reduce Drug Supply and Demand, introducing new measures to confront the driving forces behind this crisis.
  • The President signed the landmark SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act, the largest and most comprehensive legislative package addressing a single drug crisis in history.
  • The President helped secure a record $6 billion in funding to fight the opioid epidemic.
  • The Administration provided more than $2 billion in grants in 2018 to help States, territories, tribes, and local communities prevent and treat opioid abuse.
  • The Administration pursued scientific solutions to prevent and treat addiction through the Helping to End Addiction Long-term (HEAL) Initiative.
  • The President launched a national public awareness campaign about the dangers of opioid addiction and youth opioid usage.
  • Last year, President Trump created a Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis, which recommends ways to tackle the opioid crisis.
  • The Administration declared the opioid crisis a nationwide Public Health Emergency in 2017.
  • President Trump is working to cut off the flow of deadly opioids into our country and to disrupt the networks that distribute them to our communities.
  • The Administration secured first-ever indictments against Chinese nationals for fentanyl trafficking.
  • The Department of Justice (DOJ) launched a surge to target fentanyl and heroin dealers in the districts with the most severe overdose death rates.
  • The DOJ formed a Joint Criminal Opioid Darknet Enforcement team and shut down the biggest Darknet distributor of drugs.
  • Last year, the DOJ announced the largest healthcare fraud takedown in history, arresting more than 120 defendants with opioid-related crimes.
  • The President launched a Safer Prescribing Plan that seeks to cut nationwide opioid prescription fills by one-third within three years.
  • The Administration has led four National Prescription Drug Take-Back Days, collecting a record-breaking 1,837 tons of expired and unneeded prescription drugs.

Thursday, May 09, 2019

Merriam Webster new word Stratagem

1. a. an artifice or trick in war for deceiving and outwitting the enemy

b. a cleverly contrived trick or scheme for gaining an end

2 . skill in ruses or trickery

Stratagem is not a “new” word in my vocabulary exactly, but I doubt I use it much.  Strategy, yes, I do use that.  But with the deception going on in Congress, it might be more useful. Investigating Americans because they don’t like them and having no crime to punish seems like a poor stratagem on which to build a campaign.

“A stratagem is any clever scheme—sometimes one that's part of an overall strategy (i.e., a carefully worked out plan of action). The word stratagem entered English in the 15th century and was originally used in reference to some artifice, such as a military plan or maneuver, which was designed to deceive or outwit the enemy. This military sense can be traced back to the word's Greek ancestor stratēgēma, which is itself based on stratēgein, meaning "to act as a general." Stratēgein, in turn, comes from stratēgos (meaning "general"), which comes from stratos ("camp" or "army") and agein ("to lead"). Stratēgos is an ancestor of strategy as well.”

Wednesday, May 08, 2019

Trying out the aggregator/repository CORE

Periodically I try out new search engines, data collectors and repositories I haven’t used, so today I discovered CORE,, which at the moment has open access 135,500,000 publications, documents, blogs, trivia, thoughts, and according to my search, “President Trump,” over 725,000 items on our president even though he’s only been in office two years.

CORE’s mission is to aggregate all open access research outputs from repositories and journals worldwide and make them available to the public. In this way CORE facilitates free unrestricted access to research for all.

The co-investigator on the Euro Crisis in the Press (Japan) concluded even before Trump took office that he was a phenomenon like the world had never seen.

“Brexit has prevailed, the EU is in tatters, and finally Mr. Donald J. Trump has been elected President of the United States of America. Without any possible overstatement, the consequences of his ascent to the US presidency cannot be underestimated. It is a veritable game changer for global politics, an unexpected and glorious triumph for some, an unfathomable disaster for others.”

Checking his Tweets against the SOTU by three (American or British names) authors at Instituto Complutense de Análisis Económico (ICAE)

“State of the Union Addresses (SOUA) by two recent US Presidents, President Obama (2016) and President Trump (2018), and a series of recent of tweets by President Trump, are analysed by means of the data mining technique, sentiment analysis. The intention is to explore the contents and sentiments of the messages contained, the degree to which they differ, and their potential implications for the national mood and state of the economy. President Trump's 2018 SOUA and his sample tweets are identified as being more positive in sentiment than President Obama's 2016 SOUA. “

And from a UK blog, an interesting quote from Hillary Clinton even before he was the Republican candidate.

“It’s clear he doesn’t have a clue what he’s talking about. So we can’t be certain which of these things he would do. But we can be certain that he’s capable of doing any or all of them. Letting ISIS run wild. Launching a nuclear attack. Starting a ground war. These are all distinct possibilities with Donald Trump in charge.” –  Hillary Clinton, Speech in San Diego, CA, June 2, 2016

Yes, if I had time to browse 725,000 bad predictions, slanders, and hysteria, it would be interesting, but we’ve heard it all for 3 years.

Monday, May 06, 2019

Book suggestions for 2019-2020

Our book club, which doesn’t have a name, was organized by a group of young mothers mostly who lived in Clintonville and attended Bethel Road Presbyterian Church in 1979.  So this fall, it will be 40 years old.  The babies are grown, most members are grandmothers, new members have joined (I joined in October 2000), others have moved out of the area. We are missionaries, librarians, school teachers, lawyers, administrators, volunteers, and of course, daughters, mothers, wives, sisters, widows and grannies.  Except for a few special occasions, we now meet in the afternoon instead of the evening and at Bethel Road Presbyterian where we have good parking and is centrally located for all but one of us. Part of the group split off and still meet in the afternoon.  In May we select our new books for the next September through May, and these are the suggested titles.  All looked good, so I’ve listed all, but starred the ones who got the votes.

**1. Becoming Mrs. Lewis, by Patti McCallahan  September 9  The marriage of Joy Davidman and C.S. Lewis.  Led by Bev

**2. The black ascot, by Charles Todd November 4  Inspector Ian Rutledge  Led by Justine

**3. Dream of death, by Connie Berry (local author) March 2 Murder mystery Led by Carolyn C.

4.  Beneath a scarlet sky, by Mark Sullivan.  Historical fiction.

5.  What Alice Forgot, by Liane Moriarity. Fiction, woman forgets a decade of her life

**6. Before we were yours, by Lisa Wingate, October 7, at Peggy’s, Historical fiction, stolen children placed for adoption. Led by Margie

**7. Road to dawn by Josiah Henson April 6  Real life story of slave who inspired Uncle Tom’s Cabin. Led by Gail

8.  Heavenly Man the story of Brother Yun, Chinese Christian.

9. Another kind of madness by Stephen Hinshaw.  Memoir of mental illness

10. White Rose by Kip Wilson, with We will not be silent.  WWII era historical fiction 

11. Road to Character by David Brooks  Thinkers and inspiring leaders

12.  Mrs. Mike by Benedict Freedman Love story set in Canada

**13. Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd.  January 13.  Grimke sisters. Led by Peggy

**14. Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell. February 3. Unusual interesting people. Led by Carolyn A

**15. One of the Narnia stories—A Horse and his boy. At Carolyn A.’s home December 2.  Everyone shares in this one.

**16. Elephant whisperer by Lawrence Anthony. May 4.  Led by Peggy.

Sunday, May 05, 2019

Arizona trip, Day 2, April 3,Walking in Historic Prescott

You're in good hands when you shop with sister Kate.  On Wednesday we went to WalMart (I think it was in Prescott Valley) to buy a new suitcase for Bob.  I didn't realize what a disaster his was until I watched him trying to move it through the airport after Phoebe dropped us off on Tuesday morning.  It was a little larger, but it had 4 wheels and a working extension pull handle. For lunch on Wednesday we went to a Bruce favorite where "everyone knows your name" and they knew the servers and owners.  I think it was called Tony's Too Bar and Grill, at least this looks like the photo. Great food, and then we were off to see historic, downtown Prescott, the county seat.
Photo of Tony's Too Bar & Grill - Prescott Valley, AZ, United States. Outside front. Not much to look at. Packed none the less..

Prescott is known for being a friendly city, and I'd certainly agree. On our walk we met a woman who 2 days before had moved there from Huntington Beach, California, and then later we saw her again talking to some folks sitting outside a restaurant and those people used to live in Columbus, Ohio.  It was so easy to strike up a conversation with anyone, including a "just married" couple walking around the courthouse plaza.  I assume they were married in the court house.

Just married in Prescott, Arizona
Yavapai is the name of the county, but also the name of the native peoples of the area, so there are many buildings, colleges, city organizations, and non-profits called Yavapai.
The county courthouse with a statue dedicated to all veterans from Yavapai County
I think this is how we met the woman from California--
she offered to take our photo and we began talking.
In December all the trees are wrapped with colored lights for a Christmas celebration.
We visited the lobby of an old hotel while walking in the historic district.

Arizona trip, Day 1, April 2, Prescott

Prescott where the Bruces live is about an hour and forty-five minutes from Scottsdale, and as we went higher and higher it got cooler and gradually the cactus began to disappear. People in Phoenix come to the mountains to get away from the heat.  Although it was spring, and we saw a few flowering trees, the landscape was brown.
Rick and Kate's new home in the suburbs of Prescott, 3 bedroom ranch, 3.5 baths, 10 ft. ceilings with 8 ft. doors, 3 garages, covered patio and porch, paver drive way, lighted walk-ways.  Really great for entertaining, and lovely neighbors. 
The neighborhood is about 4 years old, and there were few houses on their street when they selected their model, but now there are just a few lots left.  This is the area we would walk in every day.  I discovered quickly the lack of oxygen at that elevation and had difficulty breathing. All homes had desert style landscaping.  Very little green. 

Front porch--it was cool but we enjoyed sitting here.
Tuesday evening Rick drove into Prescott to get a pizza.  It was a long, but lovely day.

Arizona trip, Day 1, April 2, Taliesin West

With a three hour time difference, we arrived in Phoenix 20 minutes early and before lunch.  Rick and Kate's son, daughter-in-law and grandson live there, so they know the area well, and had a favorite restaurant, Mimi's in Scottsdale not far from Taliesin.  We had purchased tickets on-line for Taliesin West, but arrived an hour early and had no problem getting them changed.

Taliesin West was architect Frank Lloyd Wright's winter home and school in the desert from 1937 until his death in 1959 at the age of 91. Today it is the main campus of the School of Architecture at Taliesin and houses the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation. The Foundation has attempted to keep it looking much as it did in the 1950s, and it is a very popular tourist destination. We'd visited a number of FLW buildings and homes 10-15 years ago, in Ohio, New York, Oklahoma, and Illinois so we loved being able to see this final phase of his career.
Promotion photo of the Taliesin campus
Waiting for our docent--it was extremely hot with little shade
Students at work, a three year Master of Architecture program
Our docent explaining the history of the buildings and how the school works
One of many sculptures by Heloise Crista who died in March, 2018 at 92. 
Seeking some shade in the gift shop
Auditorium where students gathered with Wright for socializing

Arizona Trip, Day 1, April 2

Last year for Bob's 80th birthday, we had a huge party and his three siblings from Indiana, California and Arizona came here. It was time and money intensive, but I think we managed to outdo it this year for his 81st.  We flew to Arizona to visit brother Rick and sister Kate in their new home in Prescott, Arizona, on April 2 and sister Debbie flew in later in the week so we could be together again.  She also had never seen their new home. I believe they had moved there from Huntington Beach, California in 2015. Due to a divorce, the brothers and sisters had not grown up in the same home--Bob and Jean grew up in Indianapolis with their mother and step-father, and Rick and Debbie grew up with their mother and father in Southern California.

Bob, Rick Debbie and Jean with Grandfather C.L. Bruce in 1952 in Indiana

Rick, Bob and Deb in April 1993 in California for Bob's birthday

Bob, Jean and Deb at Jean's 80th in Indianapolis in February 2016

Deb, Bob, Jean and Rick in April 2018 in Columbus for Bob's birthday

President Trump and religious freedom—know your rights

Trump has done more for religious freedom in the U.S. than many recent presidents, but the media neglect to do their homework and some recent reporting shows the ignorance of journalists raised and educated in the late 20th-21st centuries. They hate him so therefore never dig into the laws and regulations. President Trump's executive order on religious liberty in May 2017 noted, "Federal law protects the freedom of Americans and their organizations to exercise religion." No new laws, no convoluted regulations. Simply implement the laws we had.

Section 4 provided guidance (by then AG Jeff Sessions) on 20 principles of religious freedom and guidance for their implementation, followed by an appendix with supporting case law. I wonder how many journalists, pastors, church boards or school principals have read it?

Every American Christian, Jew, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, others and atheists needs to print and save Sessions' guidelines so they don't look foolish arguing and making charges about settle law.

Was it Obama, Trump or Clinton who declared federal employees may keep religious materials on the private desks and read them during breaks? Clinton. Was it Obama, Trump or Clinton who said federal employees can wear religious jewelry, invite coworkers to attend services, and discuss religious issues? Clinton.

Why do Lutheran schools have the right to employ only practicing Lutherans, or set codes of conduct for non-Lutheran employees? Title VII Civil Rights Act 1964.

Thursday, May 02, 2019

Is anyone watching CNN?

"How quickly Washington forgets — when it is convenient. Trump is not the first president to resist congressional investigation of the inner workings of his administration, and Barr is not the first Cabinet officer to negotiate the terms of his appearance before a committee. In fact, the responses are unremarkable."

But those who watch CNN will never know that. . . is anyone watching CNN? Ratings are terrible. I see it occasionally at the gym or in snippets on Facebook posts—ridiculing it.

Who believes socialism will be different this time?

I keep reading on WaPo, NYT or BBC or even posts of liberal Facebook friends, that it isn't really socialism destroying Venezuela, but some other hybrid monster. This comment is being passed around on FB as "from a friend," and makes much more sense about what happens when you vote the Socialists in--and doesn't happen overnight.

"A friend writes: "For two decades the people of Venezuela voted for Socialists. They celebrated as their President stripped the successful of their property and their rights. They cheered as their government derided other nations for their commitment to capitalism and property rights and individual liberty.

I don't feel sorry for that majority who created the monster that now runs over them with armored vehicles, that stole their arms and left them defenseless against a nanny-state-turned-cannibal, that left them so penniless and hungry that they're eating their pets.

As Venezuela turns into a river of blood, as all socialist experiments necessarily do, I feel bad only for those who knew better all along. I feel bad for those in Venezuela who know history, who employ reason, who value evidence and logic and know basic economics. They are the victims of the mob, and they are the only victims in Venezuela.

The rest of them are getting exactly what they asked for, whether they knew it or not. Still, it will be less than a week before Democrats in our government demand we import these people here in the hopes they will vote for the same disastrous fiction that now eats their own country, a country that was one of the most-successful countries in the world."

How safe are our schools?

Highlights on school crime.   It's decreased in this century, but would you know from the news? Reported hate-words have decreased. Would you know that from memes and posts on social media? Also, crimes among juveniles, girls and boys, have decreased 65% since 1996, and arrests significantly from 2006-2015.

  • Based on the 2017 National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS), students ages 12 to 18 experienced 827,000 total victimizations (i.e., theft and nonfatal violent victimization) at school and 503,800 total victimizations away from school.
  • From 2000 to 2017, there were 153 casualties (67 killed and 86 wounded) in active shooter incidents at elementary and secondary schools and 143 casualties (70 killed and 73 wounded) in active shooter incidents at postsecondary institutions.
  • In 2017, about 6% of students ages 12 to 18 reported being called hate-related words at school during the school year, representing a decrease from 12% in 2001. This percentage also decreased between 2001 and 2017 for male and female students as well as for white, black, and Hispanic students.
  • Between 2001 and 2017, the percentage of students ages 12 to 18 who reported that gangs were present at their school during the school year decreased overall (from 20% to 9%), as well as for students from urban areas (from 29% to 11%), suburban areas (from 18% to 8%), and rural areas (from 13% to 7%).
  • During the 2015-16 school year, 47% of schools reported one or more crime incidents to police. The percentage of public schools reporting incidents to police was LOWER in 2015-16 than in every prior survey year.

Wednesday, May 01, 2019

Boys will be boys

It was judges and bureaucrats writing regulations who decided that the word "sex" which refers to a biological fact in our laws which primarily protect and promote females, was interchangeable with the concept of "gender" which originally was a term for grammar. Gender identity is just what it implies-- a fluid term with no basis in fact or biology. The wording in our equal opportunity laws was never intended to include biological men in women's athletic events, pronouns forced on others or bathrooms.

If an adult white man can identify as a woman, he can also identify as an American Indian, or a 15 year old disabled kid who needs special treatment. Our Congress needs to change the law based on evidence so we have clarity instead of law suits and confused teachers and employers.

I'm not even that comfortable with SCOTUS, another group of judges, making this decision on who gets to change the law.