Daily Archive: September 14, 2012

Short Extemporaneous Observation

So here I sit perched on a limb of a tree trying to construct a mobile, tied to a branch with the major challenge of balancing the two sides of the horizontal bamboo using my selected dangling doodads, without falling off. I don’t like making mobiles first and then hanging them.

Now this tree is roughly 220 years old, the same age as our constitution; which happens

to be pruned by caretakers in black robes with life tenure. It’s a coed group today. I

doubt they socialize much. But they’re good bullshitters. I was trained in law too and my classes were also coed.

Now this so called Constitution was conceived by a few, intelligent, semi/appointed/annoited/chosen fans of the Roman Senate who just happened to accidentally omit the Declaration of Independence (that great document that gave the reasons for the great revolution just a few years back)from said new Social Compact that virtually nobody ratified and yet bound all future generations. Really strange when you

think about it.

Now these guys who didn’t have a clue about photosynthesis, molecular biology,

anthropology/evolution, nutrition, childbirth and women generally, etc. multipled by

great stupidity because they couldn’t figure out how to profit from tobacco without

slavery and perfect THEIR union without conquest, got themselves and everybody else

“out on a limb” (thus the inspiration of this short essay).

Now I for one have never been asked to sign up for this social compact; which is kind of weird because I assume I’m a free agent with free will. As far as I can remember, my earliest recollection of any type of political commitment was the requirement to say the pledge in kindergarten. And of course occasionally confronted with things in life like being told to register for the draft and be ready for jury duty (but remember

that the judge decides the rules of evidence and the validity of the law).

Did we really have to wait 10,000 years for the first amendment? Really, Really strange when you think about it.

 

Cartnoon

Still no improvement on the IMDB writeup.  Please note the duck is Dizzy, not Daffy.  Posted here May 23, 2011.

It’s an Ill Wind

On This Day In History September 14

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

This is your morning Open Thread. Pour your favorite beverage and review the past and comment on the future.

Find the past “On This Day in History” here.

September 14 is the 257th day of the year (258th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 108 days remaining until the end of the year.

On this Day in 1901, U.S. President William McKinley dies after being shot by a deranged anarchist during the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, New York.

President and Mrs. McKinley attended the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, New York. He delivered a speech about his positions on tariffs and foreign trade on September 5, 1901. The following morning, McKinley visited Niagara Falls before returning to the Exposition. That afternoon McKinley had an engagement to greet the public at the Temple of Music. Standing in line, Leon Frank Czolgosz waited with a pistol in his right hand concealed by a handkerchief. At 4:07 p.m. Czolgosz fired twice at the president. The first bullet grazed the president’s shoulder. The second, however, went through McKinley’s stomach, pancreas, and kidney, and finally lodged in the muscles of his back. The president whispered to his secretary, George Cortelyou  “My wife, Cortelyou, be careful how you tell her, oh be careful.” Czolgosz would have fired again, but he was struck by a bystander and then subdued by an enraged crowd. The wounded McKinley even called out “Boys! Don’t let them hurt him!” because the angry crowd beat Czolgosz so severely it looked as if they might kill him on the spot.

One bullet was easily found and extracted, but doctors were unable to locate the second bullet. It was feared that the search for the bullet might cause more harm than good. In addition, McKinley appeared to be recovering, so doctors decided to leave the bullet where it was.

The newly developed x-ray machine was displayed at the fair, but doctors were reluctant to use it on McKinley to search for the bullet because they did not know what side effects it might have on him. The operating room at the exposition’s emergency hospital did not have any electric lighting, even though the exteriors of many of the buildings at the extravagant exposition were covered with thousands of light bulbs. The surgeons were unable to operate by candlelight because of the danger created by the flammable ether used to keep the president unconscious, so doctors were forced to use pans instead to reflect sunlight onto the operating table while they treated McKinley’s wounds.

McKinley’s doctors believed he would recover, and the President convalesced for more than a week in Buffalo at the home of the exposition’s director. On the morning of September 12, he felt strong enough to receive his first food orally since the shooting-toast and a small cup of coffee. However, by afternoon he began to experience discomfort and his condition rapidly worsened. McKinley began to go into shock. At 2:15 a.m. on September 14, 1901, eight days after he was shot, he died from gangrene surrounding his wounds. He was 58. His last words were “It is God’s way; His will be done, not ours.” He was originally buried in West Lawn Cemetery in Canton, Ohio, in the receiving vault. His remains were later reinterred in the McKinley Memorial, also in Canton.

Czolgosz was tried and found guilty of murder, and was executed by electric chair at Auburn Prison on October 29, 1901.

Muse in the Morning

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
Muse in the Morning


Art Glass 13

The Homecoming of Aziza:

As I pointed out at the end of the last long diary that I posted here on the Stars Hollow Gazette, I did get another exotic bird, after my 20 year old Noble Macaw, McGee, passed over the Pet Rainbow into Bird Heaven, in early February of 2010.   I did some research on birds, both on and offline, and decided on a beautiful, adorable baby Congo African Grey Parrot.

This is a photograph of Aziza, where she looks like she’s doing a dance.  She’s in one of her favorite poses, on her favorite outside-her-cage height and place:

Homecoming of Aziza

Here’s yet another photo of  Aziza,

Homecoming of Aziza

playing in her cage, looking curiously down at something while she’s on her bong rope swing, which is a favorite inside-her-cage perch of hers.

Here’s another more exuberant photo of Aziza.

Homecoming of Aziza

She certainly reveals her beauty, exuberance and gracefulness when she’s in that position.  It’s great!

This is a photo of Aziza perched on my forearm/hand.  You now have a close-up view of her, and you can see her beauty on a somewhat larger scale.

Photobucket

Here’s yet another photo of Aziza, in one of her most pensive modes:

Aziza my baby Congo African Grey Parrot.

This photo, too, reveals how beautiful she really is!  One of my favorite photos of Aziza.Now that I have presented afew (albeit familiar) pictures of Aziza, many of them taken when she was even younger than she is right now, I will proceed with the essay itself.

After the unfortunate passing of my (almost) 20-year-old Noble Macaw, McGee in early February of  2010 due to unknown and natural causes, I knew in my heart that I wanted another exotic bird.  Yet, going out and getting another bird right away didn’t make sense.  I needed time to mourn and do research as to what kind of bird that I wanted.  It was at about ten-thirty on a Sunday night, when I went to cover McGee’s cage.  Seeing McGee lying still on the bottom of his cage, I called his name, and caressed him, hoping to wake him up.  There was no response forthcoming, so I immediately knew the worst;  McGee had passed over the pet rainbow to bird heaven.   Probably not the best thing to do, but, being in shock, I was just thinking on my feet, so to speak.  The next morning, I called my sister and told her the sad news, and then I got a call from my brother a few minutes later, after my sister had called him and given him a message.  I received much condolences from my family, friends and some of my neighbors who I told.  I knew that I  wouldn’t be getting another bird until the spring, and, although it was a fairly short time, I began to feel the emotional pain of  not having a pet to greet me when I walked in the door, and I often found myself looking over at McGee’s old cage in the corner of the living room, expecting him to be there, but finding an empty cage instead.

A week later was my birthday, and one of my birthday presents was a couple of books about parrots;  One was called Parrots for Dummies, and the other was a complete book on African Greys, because I was leaning towards getting an African Grey Parrot.  I did much research on African Greys and other parrots both on and offline.  I asked around about a reputable pet store in our area, talking to the veterinarian that I’d taken McGee to, a couple of her assistants, and a neighbor who’d purchased a Red-Lored Amazon at that same place ten  years before.  All roads pointed to a pet store down in East Walpole, MA, called Bird and Reptile Connection.  After I explained about the passing of my Noble Macaw,  I went down and visited the place, and looked at a not-quite-a year-old Goffins Cockatoo, which is one of the smaller cockatoos.  It was a beautiful bird–all white with a sort of orangey-pink coral color underneath.  The Goffins and I got along splendidly, but after doing much on and offline research, I decided against getting the Goffins cockatoo, and I concentrated on the African Grey instead.  I asked about the baby Timneh African Greys that were due to arrive in April, which were a little cheaper than the Congo African Greys and were reputed to be somewhat more easygoing.  I decided to look at the Timneh, being set on that.  I bided my time, doing as much research as I could, on the Greys, housing for them, care, and food for them.  I kept in touch with the people at Bird and Reptile Connection via telephone and email.  April finally came.  

Memoir to McGee:

Sadly, my  beautiful, beloved pet Noble Macaw, McGee, passed over into Bird Heaven on Sunday night, February 7th, 2010, at the age of roughly 20.  I found him dead, at around 10:30 p. m., on the bottom of his cage.  It was very much of a shock, which I still haven’t gotten over, but I hope it’ll wear off soon.  

So saying, I’ve decided to write a memoir of McGee.  Here goes:

I had been wanting a pet bird for quite a long time.  After doing some research and looking in various pet stores, we hit upon one in Boston’s Back Bay area called Back Bay Aquarium & Pet Shop, which is no longer in business.  After looking at some Noble Macaws, I decided I wanted a Noble Macaw as a pet.   After going on vacation for a couple of weeks, I picked out one of the young, green macaws, with a blonde beak, red under the wings, and olive yellow underneath closer to the body.   Accompanied by my parents, I picked out the bird,  selected a cage, reserved the bird and, then my parents and I went to lunch at Chang-Sho, a popular Chinese restaurant in Cambridge’s Porter Square.  All during lunch, we kept throwing out names for the bird, and my mother finally asked me  “What’s the name that Ian (my younger brother) constantly calls you out of affection?”  “McGee”, I replied.  So, the name stuck, and we all agreed that the name “McGee” was a good name for the bird.  

The next day, Sunday, was a rainy, cold day, and I picked up McGee from the Pet Shop.  The pet shop manager put McGee in a cardboard carrier, and I drove him home and put him in his cage, gave him food and water, and allowed him to become acclimated to me and his new surroundings.  McGee squawked happily, and enjoyed himself.  However, the euphoria was relatively short-lived, when a now ex- neighbor who worked nights and slept during the day, complained about the noise.  The guy who lived with her was more amiable, and said that he’d prefer not to be woken up before 7:30 a. m. by McGee’s noise, so I purchased a dark brown cover for the bird’s cage, and made a point of closing my Venetian blinds with the slats facing outward to keep the early-morning sun out of the apartment.  It worked, and that part of the problem was solved.  Since I  then had a fulltime job, I ended up confining McGee to my studio, which was an OK compromise.  At the manager’s suggestion, I took him up to my loft to meet McGee, who immediately won him over.  

Although the woman wasn’t  satisfied, and continued to give me a hard time, it had to do.  One day, as I was going out for a morning run, and the complaining woman had just finished her run, I decided to confront her, saying  “Hey!  If you’ve got any problems, it would be very much appreciated if you’d come and talk to me about it first.”  The woman quickly ran upstairs.  A little later, as I was finishing my morning run, I saw the woman going towards the MBTA station, in the opposite direction from where I was going.  When she saw me, she fled to the opposite side of the highway, stumbling and almost falling down as she ran across the road!  

Criminal Dissent: Update

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

The “Good Guys” won one.

Back in January of this year Chris Hedges, Pulitzer Prize-winning war correspondent Chris Hedges, became the lead complainant in a law suit against the Obama administration after President Obama signed the National Defense Authorization Act on December 21, 2011:

Hedges asserted that section 1021 (pdf) of the bill, which authorized indefinite military detention for “a person who was a part of or substantially supported al-Qaeda, the Taliban, or associated forces that are engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners, including any person who has committed a belligerent act or has directly supported such hostilities in aid of such enemy forces,” left him, as a working journalist, vulnerable to indefinite detention because neither Congress nor the president defined the terms “substantial support,” “associated forces” or “directly supported.” [Emphasis added.]

After several hearings on the whether or not the plaintiffs had standing,on May 16, US District Court Judge for the Southern District of New York Katherine B. Forrest issued a preliminary injunction enjoining the enforcement of 1021. On September 12, Judge Forrest made that injunction permanent

Wednesday’s 112-page opinion turns the temporary injunction of May into a permanent injunction. The United States appealed on August 6.

The permanent injunction prevents the U.S. government from enforcing a portion of Section 1021 of the National Defense Authorization Act’s “Homeland Battlefield” provisions. [..]

“This court does not disagree with the principle that the president has primacy in foreign affairs,” the judge said, but that she was not convinced by government arguments.

“The government has not stated that such conduct – which, by analogy, covers any writing, journalistic and associational activities that involve al Qaeda, the Taliban or whomever is deemed “associated forces” – does not fall within ยง 1021(b)(2).”

This ruling of course will be appealed. In the meantime, journalists, reporters, humanitarian aid workers are still protected by the Constitution. We owe a hearty “thank you” to Judge Forrest for not abdicating her judicial responsibilities. But most of all the Chris Hedges and the other six members of the “Freedom 7“: Pentagon Papers journalist Daniel Ellsberg; author Noam Chomsky; Icelandic parliamentarian Birgitta Jonsdottir; Occupy London activist Kai Wargalla; activist Alexa O’Brien, who believes she lost her day job because of McCarthyite suggestions her work with Occupy Wall Street/Day of Rage was somehow connected to Islamic radicals; and Jennifer “Tangerine” Bolen is the founder and Executive Director of RevolutionTruth.

“Rev’ Your Engines”

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

Former Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm gave an animated and rousing speech about jobs and the auto industry at the 2012 Democratic National Convention.

Now that’s energy.

The full transcript can be read here. H/T Real Clear Politics

Cocktail Moment: Harry’s Pick-me-up

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

Cocktail Moment: Harry’s Pick-me-up

Ingredients:

   1 ounce of brandy or cognac

   Juice of half-a-lemon (a real lemon!)

   Two teaspoons of grenadine (again, real is recommended)

Directions:

Stir ingredients with ice. Shaking works, but stirring preserves the clarity, which is aesthetically better when it’s mixed with champagne.

Strain it into your glass.

Top with champagne.