Friday, November 30, 2012


I've been blogging and Facebooking for some time now.  It will soon be five years since I started posting on Facebook, a much shorter time that I have been blogging.  For quite a while, my activity in both cases was rather sporadic.  Only recently have I been taking a much more active role in both outlets.

The world has changed tremendously in the interval between my birth in 1934 and now.  Much of the farm work was still being done with horses back then.  Not very much is still being done that way.  We were in the middle of "The Great Depression" and the dust bowl was ravaging much of the Midwest.  Farms were relatively small, compared with modern family and non-family corporations spread over hundreds and thousands of acres.  Even electricity, indoor plumbing and phone service, along with much more we now take for granted, was an ethereal dream in our rural world.

We learned how to handle the soil better, thus revitalizing our bread basket, and World War II forced us into a period of technological progress that has increased at an ever accelerating pace.  Most new devices only have a few months to enjoy their ascendancy before a new and much improved model comes along.  Now, just about any business can take credit cards with a simple attachment to their cellphone that's only about an inch square!  And, you sign with your finger -- on that little screen!  Remember those clunky machines that the card was placed in and double copies were then printed on multicopy paper receipts?  Ancient history in just a few years!   

I remember the "clunky" cell phones that began to appear back about forty years ago.  They're quite a contrast to the ubiquitous little wonders we all have become accustomed to and which are an integral part of just about everyone's life.  If I remember to take my phone with me, anyone who wants to can reach me from anywhere in the world instantaneously, and if I fail to answer or the line is tied up, there's voice messaging.  No more answering services or individual answering machines.

Personally, I can't keep up with it all.  I'm still typing on a "tower" computer with a big plug-in keyboard.  It's a dinosaur!  After about three years!  My next one will probably be a lap top I can take anywhere there is a wireless connection available that will leave this one in the dust.  It could also be a super cell phone that would fit in my hand!  Don't know how typing would go on one of those though with my big fingers.  My Aflac District Manager sends me emails from his phone all the time.

Then, there's tweeting.  I haven't gotten into that.  Maybe I will.  Maybe I won't.  So far, blogging and facebooking is doing me just fine.  It's about all I want to wrap my aged mind around for the present.

What worries me is the lack of progress in ameliorating and reversing some gargantuan problems like climate change and the mindless determination of idealogues to force their thinking and ways on everyone else.  They're all convinced that they have the answers and the world's problems would cease overnight if everybody just wised up and became like them -- of course, with them in charge and calling the shots.  If science disagrees with them, science has to be wrong.  Funny.  It works just fine when it gives them smaller and better computers and a plethora of other wonders.

How long can we cling to superstition and mindlessly go our way oblivious to what we are doing to our planet?  Can we go on demanding that others see things our way or else?  How long can we "luck out" with no one daring to use those weapons of mass destruction that many nations have and others are jealously and determinedly seeking?  When will a superbug get loose and drasically alter the state of the world?

These are just some of the uneasy questions that plague me and lessen my natural bent toward optimism.  History proves that no outside force intervenes to stop the mad choices humans in power make.  We're on our own.  Viruses mutate and it's only a matter of time before one unleashes a pandemic.  No "god" has ever intervened to stop a plague.  The CDC isn't all that omnipotent either, but they do a tolerably good job most of the time.

I'm going to go on capitalizing on the advances and utilizing them for my own and others benefit.  I just hope that, in the end, enough reason and humanitarianism will prevail to prevent the wholesale destruction and carnage that could erupt at any time.


Saturday, November 24, 2012


Most of you are well aware that I have a Facebook page.  It, along with this blog, is one of the most satisfying activities I engage in because it allows me put my thoughts and feelings and those things I so deeply care about out there to hopefully help others see where we need to go as a nation and people and cut through the misconceptions and self-righteous condemnation that seems to have inflicted itself on our nation and its people.

Just today, I published a poem I've seen before.  It's attributed to an elderly nursing home patient in Scotland.  You can find it on my Facebook page:

A lady saw my posting and had this to say about it:   

"I'm in tears yet I know this poem, I guess the origins will never be known since I knew it to be from a woman in Scotland in a nursing home. I posted it a few yrs. ago. I trained in being a nursing assistand & licensed to give out medication. I treated all of them, tended them, Vets & more. At the end of each clinical I did every weekend, we had a group meeting with our RN teacher. To share thoughts, etc. I broke down crying. The room was silent, I felt foolish but my RN teacher was wonderful, she cared truly. She asked me, "Blondie (my nickname via her), why are you crying?" I told her, "I saw too many wrongs, everything's too rushed, I saw what I felt was abuse, I found it heartbreaking. I was shadowing a nursing assistant, she took me by the arm into a bathroom, where she said, can I just cry for a moment on your shoulder & then I'll be okay..." I told her of course, she cried, she hugged me saying, we can never care enough for them, there's no time, they could hire more, but they don't, none of us can complete anything right. Then it was back to work, I promised to never say a word or tell her name. My clinicals & classes lost me 20 lbs., there's no time to stop from 6-2:30, that was my clinical shift every Saturday & Sunday. No time, no time for them in the right way, no time for me. I couldn't go back when I graduated. I had fallen into depression over what I saw & how the best of facilities, high tech, still wouldn't spend extra for our Vets & all. It made no sense to me. To this day I'm haunted by it all, what I saw, what I felt, how difficult it all really is & all lands on nursing assistants, the RN's do paper work, LPN's are being phased out, nursing assistants do all & are paid a fraction of RN's. Want to be thin? Do what I did, I was thin as could be during all my nursing assitant program & the price I paid was to see horrible conditions & ongoing frustration, for me, depression. I will put on my photo in honor of this, of me at 5 in the morning or so, getting ready for my weekend clinicals at the Veteran's Nursing home. You name it, I saw it, our system is flawed, no one would want to be in one of these, you will never get the care or cleanliness, you want or desire in your personal life. The rules are, set by whom? Higher ups who don't care, but I did what I did, I was horribly sad about it & I am disappointed in how we run our nursing facilities, because, trust me, I worked in the best, the one here, they call the cream of the crop, yet it too, was neglectful, if they hired more, it wouldn't be so neglectful but its all about money. Sorry for this long story, it touches me deeply."

It touches nearly everyone who really cares about their fellow human beings.  I think nearly everyone really feels they care, yet I have to shake my head in bewilderment when I read or hear some statements such as were tossed around in the recent campaign.  When I hear sarcastic, condescending comments about the "47%" and desperate people depending on food stamps as their only means to get food or medicaid for desperately needed medical care while they claim to be followers of that teacher who extoled the "good Samaritan" and told people to sell off their great wealth and give to the poor, My only reaction has to be, "What hypocrisy."

We have a long way to go as a society, and we've lost some ground the last few decades.  Anyone who wants to hatefully denounce me as a "liberal," a "socialist" or whatever is welcome to have at it.  I'm not going to join their unaware hatefulness toward their fellow human beings.  I will continue to add my small voice for compassionate, fellow-human-loving changes we as a people once embraced and under which we grew and prospered as no nation ever before did.


Grover Norquist's dictatorship over the U. S. Congress seems to be falling apart.  His insane campaign to hold members of congress hostage to a twenty-year old pledge not to raise any taxes seems to be losing its terror hold on formerly cowardly politicians.

Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.) has broken the strnglehold and is to be praised for doing so.  Hear his statement here:

It's about time for members of congress to "grow a pair" by standing up for reason and the  welfare and future of the country.  I think the recent druming the Republicans took in the election was the "handwriting on the wall" a significant number of them are finally reading.  Hopefully, they are reading a whole lot more rather obvious signs that the days of economic madness have to end.

Thursday, November 22, 2012


Theistically prejudiced people will almost universally conclude and probably state that a professing atheist such as I doesn't feel thankful on this day dedicated to being thankful. 

Nothing could be farther from the truth.

I'm very thankful.

I just don't waste my time expressing gratitude to a non-existent sky fairy -- the adult version of Santa Claus.  I express my thankfulness to the real people and things from which I have benefited and am benefiting.

I couldn't begin to enumerate all the things I am thankful for, but here are a few.

I am thankful for those who risked everything, including their lives, to give me this great bastion of freedom called The United States of America.  I am also grateful for the dedication of great people who have preserved it against every peril, often to the point of the "ultimate sacrifice," so I can enjoy its benefits today.

I am thankful to exist on a planet which is just perfect for the kind of advanced intelligent life embodied in the human race.

I am thankful to have enjoyed the benefits of education to develop and augment my natural talents so I can sit at this computer and write this blog.

I am thankful for the genetic matchups which made me the healthy individual I am, even at this advanced age.

I am thankful Barack Obama was re-elected and the tide of fanatical theocratism and unbridled capitalistic Dickensianism has again been thwarted.

I am thankful to enjoy the sumptuous feast I am about to go partake of and look forward to the promise of tomorrow.

There is much, much more I am thankful for, but it's now time to go eat and you get the idea, I'm sure. 

Wednesday, November 21, 2012


I was asked to share the president's plan for getting us out of the mess Republican nonsense and mismanagement got us into.  Here it is:

Makes sense to me.


Henry Ford raised the wages of his assembly line workers so they would be able to afford the ownership of the autos they were constructing.  He was a wise man.  He understood that true prosperity for himself included prosperity and well-being for those who served him in his factories.

Somewhere along the way, that philosophy has disappeared from most boardrooms and has been replaced with greed and avarice directed toward the top 1% of our so-called economy.  The average citizen is being squeezed in a financial vice, paying taxes vastly higher than the privileged few while they mortgage their futures to those same vultures just to survive day to day. 

Not only are their wages steadily being eroded by pompous CEOs and overpaid company hacks, but if those avaricious incompetents happen to drive the establishment to ruin, some pirate operation like Bain Capital will descend upon it and abscond with everything of value, including the pension funds on which workers had placed their hopes for retirement security -- all to build the obscne wealth of a few privileged multi-millionaires who proclaim themselves "businessmen." 

What a travesty! 

Pirates masquerading as businessmen!

We just escaped having one of those pirates as our president!

It's time to reign in such nonsense if our nation is to survive as anything more than a third world hellhole for the average citizen.  Among the first steps needs to be a law that guarantees that the security of pension funds won't be stolen by legalized criminals.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012


In line with my blog of two days ago, I refer you to this astounding article published by American Atheists:

The drive to "talibanize" the United States of America under an inquisitional type of tyranical religious rule is pervasive, especially in the Bible Belt and Mormon Belt.  They have been thwarted -- for now -- but don't expect the underhanded drive to end.

We who value our freedom must be vigilant and on guard, and our president has to be on alert to appoint freedom-minded jurists to the Supreme Court.

Monday, November 19, 2012


As the Republicans nurse their seething anger and try to understand what went wrong with their four year campaign to sabotage President Obama and their all-out effort to buy the presidency, a new phenomenon pops on the scene in the form of Marco Rubio.  Rather than rewrite what was so well written by P. Z. Myers, I'll just steer you to his blog article on the subject:

They just can't get it through their heads that the American people got wise to them and a new generation isn't buying their nonsense.  I know the average person isn't too well versed in arithmetic, but they do have enough mathematical ability to see that stupid economic policies don't add up and more and more are realizing that theocracy equals mental stupidity and slavery.

Being honest about my cultic past on Facebook lost me another "friend" from the past who wrote me asking that I drop her from my friends list.  No problem.  The Worldwide Church of God religious virus is in full control of her mind.  Reading things I write would only disturb what peace she can feel in what remains of her now very short life.  In the final analysis, it really doesn't matter in the overall scheme of things.  Que sera, sera.

Sunday, November 18, 2012


Perhaps some of my readers think I was being hysterical or unbalanced when I referred to rabid religionists as "christofascists" and "theocractic fascists."

Let's look at what they themselves have said.

Jerry Falwell had this gem to offer:  "I hope to see the day when, as in the early days of our country, we won't have any public schools.  The churches will have taken them over again and Christians will be running them.  What a happy day that will be." 

That extreme statement appeared in 1979 in America Can Be Saved published by Sword of the Lord Publishers.

In 1992, Pat Robertson stated in The New World Order, "There will never be world peace until God's house and God's people are given their rightful place of leadership at the top of the world."

Gary North, writing in Political Polytheism: the Myth of Pluralism, had this to say:  "The long-term goal of Christians in politics should be to gain exclusive control over the franchise.  Those who refuse to submit publicly to the eternal sanctions of God by submitting to His Church's public marks of the covenant -- baptism and holy communion  -- must be denied citizenship, just as they were in ancient Israel."

Randall Terry, founder of Operation Rescue, offered this gem, as reported by The News Sentinel of Fort Wayne, Indiana:  "I want you to just let a wave of intolerance wash over you,  I want you to let a wave of hatred wash over you.  Yes, hate is good ... Our goal is a Christian nation.  We have a biblical duty, we are called on by God to conquer this country.  We don't want equal time.  We don't want pluralism."

The statements made by Romney and Ryan in the recent campaign, though less blatant in many cases, were just as alarming.  Jefferson, Franklin, Washington, Thomas Paine, etc. would have recoiled in horror if they could have heard them.  I'm sure they saw the danger that a future rise in theism could present.  That is probably why Benjamin Franklin replied to a questioner about the type of government they had instituted that it was a Republic, "if you can keep it."

We kept it!  The danger has not disappeared!

Saturday, November 17, 2012


We were privileged to hear from Dr. Darrel W. Ray this morning in Sedona.  I understand it was his first visit to Sedona.  No doubt, he will be back.  Sedona has a way of growing on people.

He didn't come to take part in any of the "wooo, wooo" so prevalent there (vortexes, auras,  psychic readings, channeling, etc.).  Instead, he lectured for about an hour and a half on the subject of his book, The God Virus: How Religion Infects Our Lives and Culture, followed by a question and answer period.

The Sedona, Verde Valley Secular Freethinkers sponsored the lecture which was well attended by people from the local area as well as visitors from Flagstaff and Prescott.  Several visitors expressed an interest in becoming associated with our group. 

I bought my own autographed copy of his book and plan to buy his new offering just recently off the presses in 2011:  Sex and God: How Religion Distorts Sexuality.

Wikipedia has a quick rundown on Dr. Ray, his background, education, etc.:

That's all.  I have a bit of reading to do.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012


Within the last 24-hours we heard the cheering news that Kyrsten Sinema has won here in Arizona, putting another Democrat of the female persuasion in the House of Representatives.

Why am I, a man, cheering when I read an article like this:

I've come to realize how important women are to a vibrant, progressive and sane society.  Over my lifetime, I've evolved from the super fundamentalist I used to be to the thoughtful progressive liberal I am today.  I no longer have the attitude fostered by patriarchal religions that women are lesser creatures created to serve and be in subjection to men.  That's a bullshit premise, if there ever was one.

I've profited all my life from the influence of women as well as men.  Knowledge, wisdom and leadership ability isn't concentrated in any one sex.  There was my mother and my grandmothers.  I especially learned love and tenderness nestled in their soft bosoms.  My first and second grade teacher was an exemplary woman who got me started academically.  Anne Niclolson was her name, and I will never forget her.

There have been so many that I could not begin to enumerate the benefits I have often subtly received through association and partnership with the female half of humanity.  My proficiency, limited as it is, with computers is due to my wife, Phyllis.  When we got married in 1995, she was amused that I wanted to buy a typewriter.  Soon we had our first computer and I slowly learned how to use and appreciate them.  Now, it's the first thing I go to every morning.  We have three of them in total.  In so many things, she is my "right arm," and I seek her advice and counsel by habit, just as she does mine.

Teamwork without sexually based and biased attitudes is the answer to nearly everything.  I hope I'm getting across the fact that we all need each other and the sooner women have an equal and respected right at the national and international tables, the better off the entire human race will be.

C'mon, all you angry old white men.  Chill out a little and appreciate the benefits to be derived from all those females you've felt superior to and belittled.

Sunday, November 11, 2012


There's an article on Huffington Post this morning quoting Carlos Gutierrez, hispanic advisor to the Republican party as to why hispanics were so terrified of Romney and the Republican party:

They weren't the only ones terrified.  So were negroes, gays, secular-minded people like me, women, anyone who sees the danger of further uniting religion and the state, etc.

One commenter sumed it up well by writing: "Is there actually anything the repubs are for that doesn't involve being 'anti' something?"

Too which another commenter replied:  "Let's see: anti-gay, anti-immigration, anti-reproductive rights, anti-voting rights, anti-middle class, anti-union, anti-medicaid, anti-medicare, anti-education, anti-science.  OK, I'm going to run out of space."

That pretty well sums it up.

Saturday, November 10, 2012


The Sedona, Verde Valley Secular Freethinkers are sponsoring an address by Dr. Darrel Ray, author of The God Virus: How Religion Infects Our Lives and Culture at the Sedona Elks Lodge, 110 Airport Road, Sedona at 11 am, November 17.

This lecture is free to the public and will carefully detail the practical consequences of religious beliefs and their effect on personalities, families and cultures.  He will explore various methods religions use to infect and maintain infection within a particular religion.

If at all practical financially and distance-wise, it would be well worth your while to attend.

Following the lecture, join us in the lounge for informal conversation and refreshments.  Dr. Ray will have his book for sale.  For further information:  928-203-4213.

Friday, November 9, 2012


I got a call from my cousin in Houston this morning.  She was kind of down over all the "friends" who have angrily rejected her over her support of Obama.  One of three Obama sign displayers in her plus-55 community has had dog feces thrown on their driveway and trash on their lawn.  I welcomed her to "the club," since I've had the same experiences for decades now.

Theocrats worshipping their "god of love" have one thing abundantly in common -- unthinking hatred of anyone who doesn't go along with their agenda.  If some unfortunate female human gets raped and turns up pregnant, god intended it to turn out that way.  If hated Obama and us horrible liberals happen to win an election, suddenly it must be "Satan's triumph."  I thought they claimed their god was "omnipotent!"  I seem to recall that there is a verse in that New Testament quoting a Jewish leader advising his angry contemporaries to back off lest they be found to be fighting god.

Personally, I don't think any of the imaginary two "gods" people prate about had a damn thing to do with it.  There simply were more of us voting in the right places than them, and we carried the day.  The demographics are changing -- and rapidly.  The "angry old white men" who hate having a "nigger" in the white house (yes, that's exactly how they feel), want the "leave it to Beaver" fantasy world back and detest anyone who doesn't fit their sexual, ideological, hard-ass style of life.  They are losing their clout.  More of them are disappearing from the scene every passing day while younger, more educated and more reasonable people take their place.

They realize they are losing their evil control.  That's why they do everything they can to keep our youth from being truly educated in sound thinking.  That's why they denounce "educated fools."  That's why they want their "creationism" forced on pliable young minds as early as possible -- the plausibility of their holy book is at stake!  They don't want their children to be thinkers.  They want them to be robotic clones of them.  It isn't working.  Largely because -- WE WON!  They know that, and it makes them desperately, viciously angry.  Their grab for power and total dominance was thwarted.

When I was commiserating with my doctor over my fears that Romney might win, he assured me that was impossible because too many thinking young people had come on the scene, and if their votes were honestly allowed and counted, Romney could not win. 

He was right.  I am very thankful he was right.  It means my grandchildren's lives won't be lived in a theocratic hell hole under the unfeeling heel of the rich and the fanatical theists.  Notice the election maps.  Those red states delineate the religion-deluded Bible Belt and the Book of Mormon deluded west. 

We now have the chance to reverse course and nip that theocratic Dickensian world in the bud.

Thursday, November 8, 2012


I received the link to the video cited below because I supported and helped all I could to re-elect Barack Obama President of the United States of America. 

What struck me was the deep humility and the spirit of hope this man always projects.  I'm fiery and confronting, more akin to Joe Biden than to him.  He is steady and determined with a reserve I admire but find hard to emulate. 

A man like him needs to be in the presidency at a time like this, not a man like me, and I recognize that fact.  That doesn't mean either of us is superior to the other, just that he has talents and temperments that fit him to such an office much more than any other person I can think of.

Here's the link of him speaking and conveying his thanks and appreciation to the staff of his main campaign office:


I admire animals and get delight from almost all of them.  A few, like mosquitos, could disappear from the earth and not be missed by me, but I guess they and their larvae are important as a food source to some other species, so, "Please pass the repellent."

We were at a yard sale this morning held by a nice lady who breeds, trains and shows Rhodesian Ridgeback dogs.  The one out front was sweet and absolutely beautiful.  She told us a bit about them and one story really stood out.

People who own Ridgebacks have found that the dog's jugment of people can be relied upon 100%.  They tell anyone who adopts or buys a Ridgeback to always go with and rely on the dog's judgment.

One lady got a Ridgeback puppy from this breeder and she told her that very thing.  Five years later that new Ridgeback owner came by to relate how reliable the advice had been.

She said that a man she knew and had trusted came by unexpectedly one day.  The dog absolutely refused to let that man enter the house and it mystified her.  About two weeks later, that same man was arrested for raping and murdering another woman in that same community.

I suppose we will never be able to determine the exact mechanism behind such dog instincts.  I could throw out all kinds of suppositions and some people might be dumb enough to think I knew what I was talking about.  I'm content to just pass on the story and appreciate one more example of how great a blessing "man's best friend" can be.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012


We have a neighbor at the corner of our street whom I've never met and really don't care to meet.  Every election, he loads his two fences with every Republican campaign sign he can find. 

We were wondering how soon he would take them down.  Phyllis had a doctor's appointment today, so we and the dogs took a little trip.  As we passed his corner, we noticed not a single sign...BUT, he also flies the US and Arizona flags on two flagpoles.

The national flag was flying upside down!  That's the signal of distress!

We've been rejoicing all day.  Him?  I guess not so much.

Just another of those angry old white men who are ever so slowly disappearing from the scene.  If we survive him, we'll look forward to his estate sale but won't be buying any Republican memorabilia.


As I stated in my previous blog last night, America has been saved and the future set in a progressive direction.  We are a different country this morning, but a rejuvenated, more united country than we were 24-hours ago. 

America has condemned and then embraced all foreign incursions -- the irish of the potato famine, the italians and sicilians, Jews, the Germans and Russian Germans of post World War I times, etc.  They are now "us" and we are stronger for it.  We will also be stronger from the enlarged melting pot of the recent past.  My grandson is in a relationship with a beautiful and totally wonderful philipino girl.  Instead of denouncing it, I welcome it.  This genetic and cultural mixing is a strength, not a weakness.  History proves it so.

I could say much more and probably will in the days to come.  In the meantime, this article pretty well sums up the situation:


It's over!
Now, I can rest as soon as that big glass of tea I had with dinner, and which I found out was cafeinated, wears off. I avoid cafeine because I developed an alergy to it right after I turned 70. If I drink cafeinated drinks for two or three weeks, I might as well have alzheimers. An occasional cup of coffee or tea only keeps me awake due to not being used to it.

Anyway, I can now stop fearing what might happen to this great republic my ancestors fought and died for. The theocratic right has been soundly trounced and Obama can appoint truly qualified jurists to the Supreme Court with the approval of a senate controlled by sane democrats. The gravy train for the super rich will at least be slowed down a bit. People who are "different," due to being born of a darker race, with a different sexual orientation or a different belief system will be accorded the kind of respect every human being deserves. Women won't be consigned to a second class existence under the dictates of antiquated religion and male bias.

Oh, we haven't "arrived" yet. The struggle against ignorance and superstition will go on. Mindless denunciation of progressive ideas as "socialism" won't end. Hate will not magically disappear.

But, we dodged the bullet. After the coming four years, we should be fully recovered from the "conservative" illness that came close to completely destroying our republic. That should make it easier for Biden or Hillary to win next time

Sunday, November 4, 2012


Throughout my life, I've become estranged from a lot of people over where I stand on life issues.  When I left my WCG allegiances behind, the bulk of my former associates took off for the hills.  When I left behind agnosticism and became a devout atheist, even more made themselves scarce.

A great many of those who saw through Herbert W. Armstrong's overall cultism, still hang with his ultra fundamentalist approach in other areas.  He, like the Rethugs, hated labor unions, looked down on the average person as inferior and not worthy of a decent lifestyle and had a British-style class outlook. 

Some (indeed many) former worldwiders are staunch creationists and rabid pro-life fanatics.  One angrily told me that a woman does not have control over her own body and he's absolutely vehement about evolution.  Humanism is a dirty word in his dictionary.  He buys anything pseudo-scientists put out in their cross-fertilized, literarily-incestuous books, blogs and articles, pooh-poohing what real scientists with real credentials and years of painstaking research publish and state.  We no longer communicate by his demand, and his pompous daughter consigned me to hell.

By getting involved in politics and fearlessly stating my flamingly liberal atheist/humanist outlook and opinions, I've lost even more former "friends."  Somehow, they can't take that extra logical step and cast aside that ultra conservative mindset we all bought way back there.  I'm a heretic in their eyes because I won't goose step to their theocratic fascist outlook.

That's OK.  There's too much McCoy in my ancestry for me to compromise with what I see and not speak out.  (Yes, my paternal great grandmother was Isabelle McCoy, straight from Virginia, and a more outspoken, activist personality would be hard to find.)  I'm deeply grateful to have this blog and other avenues open to say what wells up from deep within and strains to be heard.

Our nation was not founded by shrinking violets who cowered in fear.  They were willing to risk everything for the ideals they held dear.  I'm at least not risking execution as a traitor to my king like they did.  For now, anyway, no one can bring me up on charges for blasphemy or character defamation if I tell the truth as I see it.  How long that will continue is something I really worry about if the Rethug cabal manages to pull this coup off.

I must say what I say because it's the reality I see.  To do less would be a betrayal to myself and those who come after me.

To those who would angrily tell me to "shut up," I reply, "Never!"


We're two days away from either elation or crushing despair.  The future hangs in the balance.  We stand on the brink of disaster or the renewal of the promise of America generations have fought for and built.

Joe Biden lays out what is at stake sucinctly and clearly.  Take a few minutes to hear what he has to say:

I personally don't believe a word that comes out of Romney's or Ryan's mouths.  They will say anything to deceive the public and get their way.  Potential dictators always act that way.  Lies are their stock in trade and the litany of lies has been pointed out before in this blog and to anyone who pays attention and thinks as they listen.

They have promised that they won't touch the benefits seniors are presently receiving.  If you believe that, I have a bridge in New York I'd like to sell you.

Even if that were true, do we not care what awaits every American citizen as they inevitably age?  If it were not for the wisdom of past generations, millions of seniors, including Phyllis and I, would be homeless, destitute and probably long dead.  I know for sure that Phyllis' heart condition, which is under control due to Medicare and four stents, would have taken her long ago.  As it is, we can live, not lavishly, but with a modicum of comfort and dignity.  Do we want less for our children and grandchildren?

For millenia, the human race struggled and most died young, many after intense suffering.  My great grandfather lived to 69 and died in his sleep of a sudden heart attack.  A stroke took my grandfather at 72.  He suffered from high blood pressure.  My dad lived to 95.  Mother to 98.  According to my last checkup, I just might exceed that.  I couldn't have even had that checkup without Medicare. 

I remember how unnecessary and superfluous it looked to pay into Social Security and Medicare back there in my younger years.  When we are young, we feel indestructable and chafe about all that money that we could really use right now going into something that will pay off only if we reach that age that seems so far away.  I face the same mindset in trying to convince people that the ethereal future benefits of Aflac insurance really are worth the present inconvenience of the small premiums that must be paid.

We're no longer hunter gatherers doomed to following the herds and braving the elements to survive for a few harsh years until our teeth decay and break and our physical prowess declines to the point that we can no longer hack it and we have no choice but to lie down and die miserably and youthfully.

We should be progressing, not turning back the clock.  Not returning to the miseries of a few short generations back just so the super rich can lord it over those who are less fortunate and scornfully say, "Let them eat cake" while seated on their posh furniture in their opulent estates.

Saturday, November 3, 2012


Do you have a dog, or dogs, you love dearly?  Have they become to you, as to us, almost like children in your home?  Do you cherish their happy and trust-filled smiling faces and revel in giving them special treats, just like you would a child or grandchild?  Do they snuggle up to you at night and you find that you cannot get up or go back to bed without giving them a loving pat or pet?

If so, join the other millions who are thankful to have these denizens of the animal kingdom to add another fulfilling dimension to their lives. 

Your attitude would be a heresy in the Muslim world.  It also flies in the face of the prejudiced attitude toward dogs found in that revered book we've inherited from the Middle East, the Bible.

Cute little toy dogs and the multi-spendored array of breeds existent today just didn't exist in the backward, undeveloped world from which either the Bible or the Koran emerged.  In those backward, prejudiced, unscientific tomes, dogs are looked down upon and references to them are used as a slur. 

In the Muslim world, to be called a "son-of-a-bitch-dog" is one of the greatest of insults.  It's also a quite common derogatory retort that's come down to us in the Western world, but we don't add the "dog" part, in my experience, and most people don't really think about what they're saying or what original attitude it is based on.  The same basic attitude and origin applies to the disrespectful labeling of a woman as a "bitch" -- a female dog.

Dogs of two thousand or more years ago were not far removed from the wolves from which they descended.  They were useful for some purposes but not highly regarded and seldom treated the way we treat our pets.  There was no Humane Society back then.

Proverbs 20:11 sneers at dogs as creatures who will return to and eat their own vomit.  Jesus referred to gentiles as "dogs."  Several Old Testament scriptures portray dogs as scavengers that will eat human flesh and lick up human blood.

Deuteronomy 23: 18 says, in the King james translation:  "You shall not bring the wages of a harlot, or the price of a dog, into the house of the Lord your God...."  Modern translations meet modern sensibilities toward our pets by making the term apply to male prostitutes, but there is considerable evidence that the meaning of the original was actually "dog."

As for us, we love our dogs.  They are more loyal and loving than many humans.  Dogs are a wonderful, highly intelligent and useful complement to us humans.  I seriously doubt that a lion will ever, in any world, lie down with any lamb, no matter what the Bible supposedly foretells.  Our dogs lie down with us all the time, and neither they nor we have the slightest fear of each other.

Again, the Bible shows itself as an unreliable source of much of anything.  Of any true science it is almost totally lacking and unreliable.  Many of its social teachings are archaic and repugnant to a modern, enlightened mind (approval of slavery being just one example).

Thursday, November 1, 2012


I was very young.  So young I don't know when it was that I first heard the famous saying attributed to an old German, "So soon old undt so late schmart."

How true that famous saying is! 

I turned 78 in the wee morning hours of October 10.  It's been a long and stormy journey from that inauspicious beginning in the guest bedroom of my grandparent's home out there on those wide-open North Dakota plains.  It's had it's joys and fulfillments and it's pains, turmoil and sorrows. 

I've known the bursting energy and forever optimistic soarings and passion of hormone-fired youth.  I've also known the insecurity of aged legs that feel insecure on a downhill slope and have wondered, "where did all that testosterone get off to." 

I've known the despair of having a career come to a crashing end along with a marriage to which I had given my utmost dedication and faithfulness.  I've experienced the overwhelming joys of second and third loves.  In addition to divorce, I've known widowerhood after several years of marital separation. 

I've experienced soaring joy and devastating depression.  I've known lack and the joy of financial prosperity brought about by my own dedicated labor. 

I've known so many things, so many emotion-filled tumultuous times.

Mine is a unique story mainly meaningful only to me, but so like what every other human faces and goes through on this journey we call "life."  The details of each life are different, but we all travel a similar path. 

We start out with a wail as we are suddenly thrust forth into this strange, cold and insecure realm.  We travel our path and experience what comes our way and what we bring upon ourselves.  And, every day, the end draws more nigh.  The days become even more precious, and often we even reflect on what could have been but wasn't.

The "soon old" has arrived. 

The "schmart?" I hope so.


The festival of lies goes on and on.  Ad after ad put out by lying Republicans tries to paint Obama as a profligate spender. 

'Taint so. 

Here are the facts, according to official government statistics:

In the 2009 fiscal year -- the last of George W. Bush's presidency -- federal spending rose by a whopping 17.9 % from $2.96 trillion to $3.52 trillion.  You can verify those figures at the Office of Management and Budget.

In fiscal 2010 -- the first budget under Obama -- spending fell 1.8% to $3.46 trillion.

In fiscal 2011, spending rose a modest 4.3% to $3.60 trillion.

In fiscal 2012, spending is set to rise an even more modest 0.7% to $3.63 trillion, according to the Comgressional Budget Office's estimate of the budget that was agreed to last August.

In fiscal 2013 -- the final budge of Obama's current term -- spending is scheduled to fall 1.3% to $3.58 trillion.  See the CBO's latest budget outlook.

Over Obama's four budget years, federal spending is on track to rise from $3.52 billion to $3.58 trillion, an annualized increase of just 0.4% -- A far cry from the 17.9% increase during Bush's last year.

This is all in contrast to the lies we hear about Obama's profligate spending.  People don't realize that the first year of every presidential term starts off with the budget approved by the previous administration and congress.  Obama didn't begin to shape budgets until his second year in office.  Developing and steering budgets through congress takes a lot of time and effort, especially with a gridlocked congress that openly proclaims its determination to thwart everything that president tries to do to make certain, if at all possible, that he won't be re-elected.

Obama came into office with a budget already in place which called for spending to increase by hundreds of billions of dollars in response to the worst economic and financial disaster since the Great Depression, directly caused by the profligate practices of that previous administration.

As usual, the facts are ignored and the despicable liars blame Obama.