Thoughts and comments about social threads of our society.

CSPAN – not your usual soundbite

I love CSPAN. Can’t get enough of it. When my husband is traveling, I have it on all the time. When he is home, I watch it in snippets.  At the gym, I always get one of the channels tuned to CSPAN 1 2 or 3.  But come the weekend, I watch it in batches.

On the weekend, is aired, and this show features non-fiction writers. Their stories are fascinating. For example, we just watched Catherine Neal on her book about the Tyco Executive who was sent to prison for a number of felony charges tied to compensation. Ms. Neal, who is an Associate Professor of Business Ethics and Business Law, often used the case as a case-study for her students, but often times was left with feeling she didn’t fully understand what the wrong-doing actually was. She used her sabbatical time (plus) to investigate, and her findings are outstanding. Here is a snippet  When you hear her discuss her research on, you first feel incredulous, then almost fearful, as it can happen to any one of us – regardless of race, gender, or religion.  All it takes is some class-envy and complexities beyond the normal complexities one might encounter when purchasing a house.  Here is the link to her interview.  If the video is unavailable, as it sometimes is, the interview will next be aired again in a few days, March 29th.

Then there was the interview for the book titled ‘A Nation of Cowards; Black Activism in the Obama’s post-racial America‘.  The title came from  Eric Holder’s 2009 speech, and while I am not a fan of Mr. Holder’s, I am beholden to these authors for their succinct insights and remarks on race and racism in America.  I found the interview with Mr. Ikard and Mr.  Teasley interesting enough that I ordered their book and am in the process of reading it.  Very insightful.  Their interview can be seen here:

When I share these experiences with others, I am amazed no one even knows about BookTV, much less how great CSPAN is.  I must confess I myself was under-informed prior to my retirement, but now, having discovered this wonderful source of unfiltered information about our nation, our country as it is happening on the Hill,  I am beside myself with enthusiasm.

It is this enthusiasm that drives me to my computer to write this little blog, when in these quiet early-morning hours, I could be elsewhere, doing more self-indulgent things.  I urge all to listen the proceedings in the Senate and the House whenever you can (google CSPAN LIVE to stream or go to to find your local listings, (mine are 350 and 351 for DirectTV in my area), then compare what you heard to the soundbites we are fed via MSNBC and FoxNews.  You will soon realize how much we are being spoon-fed by our system, and hopefully this realization will have many of us seeking stronger information sources so that we may form our own opinion, and not parrot someone else’s opinion.  One final note, a good news agency I have found is The Hill.  Try it, and evaluate their information for yourself.

Happy learning!

Catching Pigs….

Forwarded to me in an email. You decide…is this what is happening? Are we the frogs in the pot of water?


There was a chemistry professor in a large college that had some
exchange students in the class.

One day while the class was in the lab, the professor noticed one young man, an exchange student, who kept rubbing his back and stretching as if his back hurt. The professor asked the young man what was the matter. The student told him he had a bullet lodged in his back. He had been shot while fighting communists in his native country who were trying to overthrow his country’s government and install a new communist regime.

In the midst of his story, he looked at the professor and asked a
strange question. He asked: “Do you know how to catch wild pigs?”

The professor thought it was a joke and asked for the punch line.
The young man said that it was no joke. “You catch wild pigs by finding
suitable place in the woods and putting corn on the ground.

The pigs find it and begin to come every day to eat the free corn.
“When they are used to coming every day, you put a fence down one side of the place where they are used to coming. When they get used to the fence, they begin to eat the corn again and you put up another side of the fence.

“They get used to that and start to eat again. You continue until you have all four sides of the fence up with a gate in the last side.

“The pigs, which are used to the free corn, start to come through the
gate to eat that free corn again. You then slam the gate on them and
catch the whole herd. Suddenly the wild pigs have lost their freedom.
They run around and around inside the fence, but they are caught.

Soon they go back to eating the free corn. They are so used to it that they have forgotten how to forage in the woods for themselves,
so they accept their captivity.”

The young man then told the professor that is exactly what he sees happening in America.

The government keeps pushing us toward Communism/Socialism and keeps spreading the free corn out in the form of programs such as supplemental income, tax credit for unearned income, tax exemptions, tobacco subsidies, dairy subsidies, payments not to plant crops (CRP), welfare, medicine, drugs, etc. while we continually lose our freedoms, just a little at a time.

Are you one of the caught pigs? Do you monitor the government classes taught in school to your kids? Ask your child about the Constitution. Do they know anything about it? Ask yourself about the Constitution. Do you know anything about it?

Protect our American rights. Don’t be lulled into a pen.

Mainstream media, Class warfare distraction….

Mainstream media is threatening our country’s future | Fox News.

Will write more about this when I have time.  Just capturing the thought right now.  But do keep in mind this is a speech, so the written word is clumsy.  Be gentle, go for the intent as spoken, not as written. 😉

I do believe we have a problem where  “journalists” let their opinions cloud their judgement, and they spiral out of control from reporting unbiased news to reporting biased news.  And I am not talking about the TV/Radio talk hosts, (who do this too but not under the guise of journalism). I am talking about newspapers and TV news programming.

Top Obama contributor blasts the class warfare rhetoric

I firmly believe the class warfare rhetoric is just a distraction.  I do believe the incumbent wants to distract the public from his poor performance by inflaming their emotions and creating an “us against them” atmosphere.  The problem is, the middle class slippage has been going on since the 70’s.  All kinds of people have been screaming about it – but just like the housing bubble – no on wants to listen until it is too late.  The problem we are in is not an us against them, but it is about a government (over the years, so both parties) that is run by politicians who garner power by brokering deals that are not in the public’s best interests.  Want proof?  Look at the pension plans for city employees.  It is unsustainable.  Even Willie Brown issued a recent mea culpa and again called for pension reform.  But it was politics, combined with cronyism, and the politicians gorging themselves on that feed that got us into this bloated mess.

It’s really all about the National Debt, and how we all cut back, and rebuild the American Dream.  There will be outliers on either end, and we can’t chase those losers, but we can unite and fight for our country.



High School Graduates

from Newport Patch this morning:

More than 60 percent of all students entering the California State University system are not ready for college-level English and math, according to recently released (Early Assessment) test results. Of the 40,000 first-time college freshmen that enter into the CSU system each year, 25,000 need to take remedial classes.

Makes me wonder how these students graduated high school? Why not issue Certificate of Completion instead of a Diploma? Could that serve as a wakeup call to these families, if more schools differentiated between completing 4 years versus mastering subjects? Would the evening topics (during commercial breaks) be more focused on graduating rather than completing 4 years?

Amer-Asian, Amer-Italian, Amer-African

I just heard this phrase in a recent movie or TV show.   I love it.   Amer-Asian.  It’s pronounced a-murr-asian, with that first “a” being a soft “a” ().    A very nice blend of America and Asia.  And why not for all of our nations – why not for America and Italy (Amer-Italian), or America and Africa (Amer-African).

I love it because it sounds beautiful, and it just rolls off the tongue so smoothly.  And it is a big plus that it puts being an American first, while honoring one’s roots.
With Amer-(country of origin), instead of each of us putting the country of our roots first, which is more divisive, we put our home country first, which can serve to unite us.
I hope it catches on.

We are an exhausted nation

It started a week ago, listening to Tim Conway Jr’s talk show – had to be Sept. 11th.  He took calls from people living off the government, and one thing he said really caught my attention.  He said “We are all tired.”  He went on to say something to the effect of: We work hard all day long doing too many jobs at once, we come home, grab a bite, see the kids, see the spouse, and drop into bed just to get up and start it all over again.  And it never stops.  We think nothing of calling or emailing colleagues at all hours – and they answer!  Because we can’t stop because we have too much work to do, but can’t hire anyone because no one can afford it.

I thought, “Man, that’s how I feel!”  and it was good to hear someone say it on the public airways.
I kept meaning to email him, or call his show, but never did.
Then Sunday, Sept. 29th, there was this:

First, there was Ben Stein on taxes on the Sunday Morning show asking the administration why he was being punished for earning 35 cents on the dollar.   Then, there was Bob Schieffer on Face the Nation, calling out Robert Gibbs for his “snarky response” to House Republican Leader John Boehner’s previous week’s carefully worded statement that he would reluctantly vote for just the lower and middle income tax cuts, if that was all he had in front of him.
Bob Schieffer said:

“Blame it on a long memory, but I can remember when the first move by a president like Lyndon Johnson or maybe a smart aide in the Eisenhower White House would not have been a snarky press release. 

I’m guessing LBJ would have been on the phone to Boehner in five minutes after seeing him on TV, saying something like, “If you’re serious, why don’t you come over here quietly and we’ll try to work out something good for both of us and the folks out there?”

Call me a romantic, but I believe that might have happened.

As we saw, no chance it could happen today.

And we’re right back to the partisan war. Too bad, really. “

I just about jumped out of my chair.  NOW we are going to get somewhere, I thought.  And we did.
True to form, along came Velma R. Hart at Obama’s “Investing in America” townhall.  She used the “E” word – exhausted.  She said she was an exhausted woman, and asked the President if this was “her new reality”.
Michelle Malkin’s column made reference to the Obama administration as being called the “let them eat cake” presidency.
So it’s not just me.  It is not the fact that I have been burdened with the passing of my father, who was also my business partner and very close friend.  I work very long hours, and I am tired.    There isn’t enough business to go around, and everyone is fighting for something.  With steel prices set to rise again, we are faced with a price increase, and Lord only knows what this will cause.
Sometimes I think Dad got out just in time.

Freebies – are we too broke for common sense?

Can you believe this?  Can we really debate the need for available drinking water?  For the full L.A. Times article, click here.

You just don’t imagine in our country in 2010 that there isn’t free water to drink while you are having a meal. But there isn’t,” said Kenneth Hecht, executive director of California Food Policy Advocates, an Oakland-based organization that supported the legislation. Leno’s Senate Bill 1413 requires schools by next July to make fresh drinking water available where students get their meals. The bill provides no funding, and districts can make the case that they cannot afford to comply.

But the solutions can be inexpensive, advocates say. In small schools, that can mean putting water pitchers and cups on lunch tables.

Montclair Elementary School in Oakland has a “hydration system,” basically a faucet that students use to fill their own bottles with cold drinking water, said George Manalo-LeClair, a parent at the school and senior director of legislation at California Food Policy Advocates.”

Seems simple enough, given buildings have potable water.  And when you think about the staff you are paying to manage drinking water, and the associated costs, think about the staff (and insurance)  to transport children to school, or feed children at school.  These services are what parents should be directly billed for –  everyone needs to step up and take responsibility for their own family’s daily expenses – food and transportation.  And if the family can help out by sending a thermos of water with that packed lunch, all the better.  

Water is a fundamental right for human preservation.  Ditch the other freebies – water is a legitimate one.  For more on this topic, click here.

First Gaga, Now this?

Are you joking me? This is unbelievable.

The “reporter” who wore skin-tight clothing to a football practice…..
She dresses in tight tight jeans, and says “it’s not her fault” because those jeans are “her size”. Excuse me?
Since when does a real woman blame her style (or lack of it) on the manufacturer? As if she has no choice in the matter!
Someone needs to educate this young gal on basic professionalism, basic business etiquette, and how your presentation of yourself sets the stage for the message you send out when you dress yourself in sexually explicit attire. She needs to understand she is not only being disrespectful to the people she is working with by being a distraction, but that she is also being disresptful of the wives and girlfriends of the men she was dressing :oh-so-suggestively” around.  She needs a dose of common sense – because while there is a time and place for that kind of attire (and that kind of fun), it is not in the professional field of journalism.   On the field, you expect to see that in dancers or cheerleaders, but not in journalists.