A Return To An Economy Of Artisans And Farmers?
Jul24

A Return To An Economy Of Artisans And Farmers?

There is a very long but very worthwhile read in the Atlantic, A World Without Work.  Although outsourcing is given much of the blame for the decline of manufacturing jobs in the United States it”s probably industrial robots that are more responsible.  In some cases the are simply more efficient and in other cases, like the circuit boards in the device you are reading this post on, would be impossible for human workers to...

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The Law and Sandra Bland’s Arrest
Jul23

The Law and Sandra Bland’s Arrest

By now many of us have viewed some or all of the video of the stop and arrest of Sandra Bland by a Texas law enforcement officer following Bland’s failure to signal a lane change. We now also know that Bland died in a jail cell in southeastern Texas less than three days later. Viewing the video is an emotional experience. It makes your blood boil to witness how Bland was treated by the officer. At least it made my blood boil. Officer...

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NSA Whistle-blower, William Binney, Says Agency’s Methods Make Us Less Safe
Jul22

NSA Whistle-blower, William Binney, Says Agency’s Methods Make Us Less Safe

In a very powerful exclusive interview, I recently had the privilege of speaking to an American hero, William Binney, NSA whistleblower. We discussed how NSA mass data collection makes us LESS safe; how the intentions behind it are not misguided but positively nefarious; how the lies that have been told about it are snowballing, and how Rand Paul presidential candidacy may uniquely represent an opportunity for change. Click below for...

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Happy 46th Moon Day!
Jul20

Happy 46th Moon Day!

In light of the recent jingoism of the Pluto fly-by (which I had hoped we were bigger than – after all, what looks sillier than those getting the first view of our furthest “planet” standing around waving US flags?) it’s a good time to remember the wording of that plaque we left behind on all our Apollo missions: “We came in peace for all mankind.” The Apollo missions taught us that we were all...

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Hooked on Histrionics
Jul14

Hooked on Histrionics

The past four weeks have been an exciting time for anyone who enjoys watching others flip out. The shrill screeds that have been presented have been quite entertaining. They are enough to make one sit back with a bowl of popcorn and enjoy the show. The current fuss about artifacts of the old Confederacy is silly, so silly that not even John Cleese would walk this one. The various extrapolations presented by people simply defy reason....

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The Grin of a Fool: Gun Control and the NRA
Jul11

The Grin of a Fool: Gun Control and the NRA

A white racist with strong sympathies for the Confederacy and segregation walks into a black church in Charleston, S.C., talks with a welcoming congregation for about an hour, and then murders nine of them. The response by the nation is to discuss the Confederate battle flag, and why it should be removed from society. An undocumented citizen who was deported five times gets a stolen handgun from a federal officer and murders a...

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Rebel Flag Removed, an Op Ed by Jordan Cooper
Jul10

Rebel Flag Removed, an Op Ed by Jordan Cooper

by Jordan Cooper The ungodliness of trepidation is something that riddled the citizens of South Carolina, General Assembly, and now our Governor –to approve a bill to remove the Confederate Battle Flag from The South Carolina State House. The only thing that can defeat trepidation is truth: The Confederate Flag is not a symbol of hate and institutional racism. It is one of the official flags of the previous national government...

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The American Nightmare
Jul07

The American Nightmare

In my old age I find myself musing more and more.  So what is the American nightmare?  It’s the suburbs.  I grew up in a middle to upper middle class neighborhood less than 2 miles from downtown Portland.  Our neighborhood was a community. We interacted with each other and helped each other as needed.   We had community barbecues on the weekends and occasionally took a weekend road trip together.  That community was the fabric...

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Three Commandments for Every State Capitol
Jul06

Three Commandments for Every State Capitol

The Oklahoma Supreme Court this past week ordered the legislature and the executive branch to remove a six-foot tall Ten Commandments granite monument from the front of the state house. The monument was placed there in January and is a direct violation of the First Amendment. The response by dozens of legislators, most of whom may be illiterate about the Constitution, was to call for the impeachment of the justices. The state’s...

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On the Star Spangled Banner and God Bless America (VIDEOS)
Jul04

On the Star Spangled Banner and God Bless America (VIDEOS)

July 4 is a good day to reflect on various renditions of The Star Spangled Banner and God Bless America — captured on videos. From August 2010: Well, yes, the Star Spangled Banner is a hard song to sing. But we wanted to start off your day with our national anthem with a bang. SO: OK…maybe that wasn’t quite it…so let’s try someone famous like Michael Bolton (who was a friend of my brother’s when we...

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Happy 4th of July
Jul03

Happy 4th of July

OK, yes it is the same picture I use every year but I really don’t have a better one.  It represents the soul of this aging hippie.  Don’t get me wrong, I love this country.  I just don’t always like what it...

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George Takei Apologizes for Offensive Remarks about Justice Clarence Thomas.
Jul03

George Takei Apologizes for Offensive Remarks about Justice Clarence Thomas.

This post started out as a critique of two of the Supreme Court Justices who dissented on the same-sex marriage decision –especially Justice Clarence Thomas’ misuse of the “human dignity” concept in is dissent. It was quickly overtaken by emotional and offensive comments by actor and gay rights advocate George Takei. See Updates II and III below. Takei has now finally posted an apology on his FaceBook page. It is posted below....

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The acceleration of history
Jun29

The acceleration of history

WASHINGTON — Sometimes history speeds up. Rarely in our nation’s 239 years of life has a single week brought such a surge of social change and such a sweeping set of challenges to past assumptions. The move against the Confederate battle flag in South Carolina quickly cascaded into a national effort to cast aside commemorations of secession, slavery and white supremacy. This was more than symbolism. It represented...

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Eastern Washington town threatened by wild fire
Jun29

Eastern Washington town threatened by wild fire

2:05 am Pacific A fire that started around 2:30 p.m. in 108 degree heat on Sunday threatens homes and businesses in Wenatchee, WA. My initial photos from the brush fire threatening 60 homes near Sunnyslope https://t.co/jUcfMK2YBW #wenworld pic.twitter.com/NsavuKX9u5 — Reilly Kneedler (@reillykneedler) June 29, 2015 The #SleepyHollowFire has spread to more than 1,800 acres. According to the Chelan County Sheriff’s Office,...

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Whoopin’ and a-Hollerin’ for the Plantation Life
Jun27

Whoopin’ and a-Hollerin’ for the Plantation Life

Judge A. Joseph Antanavage, with shotgun in hand, stood before a modified Confederate battle flag, and looked as if he had planned to defend whatever it is that the Confederate flag stands for. But, this wasn’t in the South. This was at a pigeon shoot near Hamburg, Pa. Pennsylvania is not only where the only legal organized pigeon shoots still exist, but where it’s not unusual to see shooters waving the Confederate flag or wearing...

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Thought Of The Day
Jun27

Thought Of The Day

What is Judicial Activism?  A decision you don’t agree with!  It’s been a Republican thing this week but just wait until next time.  It is a case where both sides do it although there have been times when both sides agree. Mike Huckabee:  “I will not acquiesce to an imperial court any more than our Founders acquiesced to an imperial British monarch. We must resist and reject judicial tyranny, not retreat.” Texas Attorney...

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“Just Who Do We Think We Are?” – The Supreme Supreme Court
Jun26

“Just Who Do We Think We Are?” – The Supreme Supreme Court

In today’s Obergefell v. Hodges decision, the Supreme Court has laid waste to several key tenets of the American political experiment in representative government including federalism, a system of checks and balances with a legislative branch designed to be strongest body, and a complete devastation of the 1st Amendment. Unlike most of colleagues from the right side of the aisle, I have known this decision was coming for some...

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This Remarkable Marriage Equality Case: Obergefell v. Hodges
Jun26

This Remarkable Marriage Equality Case: Obergefell v. Hodges

Obergefell v. Hodges, decided today, will stand in the history of jurisprudence with the likes of Brown v. Board of Education, Roe v. Wade, Gideon, Miranda and the one person/one vote decisions. The full opinion It is a decision remarkable in its own right, made even more so in having been authored by the traditional conservative Justice Anthony Kennedy. For the most part this article will allow Justice Kennedy to speak for himself,...

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A Day to Celebrate with ‘Texas Update’
Jun26

A Day to Celebrate with ‘Texas Update’

(Texas reaction at end) An article at the U.S. Supreme Court web site starts in the following manner: “EQUAL JUSTICE UNDER LAW”-These words, written above the main entrance to the Supreme Court Building, express the ultimate responsibility of the Supreme Court of the United States. The Court is the highest tribunal in the Nation for all cases and controversies arising under the Constitution or the laws of the United...

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(UPDATED) Supreme Court Concurs With The Obvious: Same-Sex Marriage Is Indeed Constitutional
Jun26

(UPDATED) Supreme Court Concurs With The Obvious: Same-Sex Marriage Is Indeed Constitutional

Another day, another U.S. Supreme Court decision that should remind us things that once made America a great country like tolerance and helping the downtrodden are not entirely extinct. A mere 24 hours after the high court dealt a major blow to conservatives in ruling 6-3 that a key provision of the Affordable Care Act passed muster, it ruled 5-4 that the Constitution guarantees a right to same-sex marriage, providing gays a...

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