Friday, November 6, 2015

There goes another pleasant evening in paradise

OK so this song is a stretch, but somehow though it is probably a love song, it speaks to getting along in society as well. It may hold a lesson. It's also the first one downloaded in anticipation of a playlist.

Photo shows results of a pipeline spill of tar sands oil in
Mayflower, Arkansas, in 2013. 
Well, there is a pleasant evening gone all to hell. I really need to learn to not take things so seriously. I felt pretty good going into the evening, so good I poured a glass of wine which I seldom do any more and downloaded a song I have always wanted to have. Then I did a last look through the pages I follow on facebook and other sites before starting a romantic comedy on TV, all the time thinking I might come up with a playlist later based from the song I downloaded. I should have forgotten about the review.

Today is the day President Obama put the kabosh on the Keystone pipeline, an environmental disaster waiting to happen. It was a victory in so many ways and probably added to the good mood as I approached the evening.

 Then came the  roll through the facebook feed. In there two of Alaska's three representatives in Congress came out calling the president every name they could get away with on facebook and making the end of Keystone sound like it was the apocalypse. It started me on the downhill slide grasping for that well-being I had felt moments earlier.

Here is the statement by the missing senator. (I call him that because he ran more against President Obama than he did against his opponent, promising to stand up to the president at every step of the way. Once elected that was pretty much the last we heard from him – hence the missing senator.)

"President Obama put the interests of radical environmentalists above hard-working, middle-class Americans. The irony is, the same ridiculous arguments he made today against Keystone — will only create a handful of jobs; does nothing for our energy security; threatens our environment — are the ones environmentalists made against the Trans Alaska Pipeline, the lifeblood of our state for nearly 40 years. TAPS is a source of pride and prosperity for all Alaskans — liberal and conservative, Democrat and Republican alike. It’s a shame the President can’t see beyond his ideology to the boundless potential of our great nation." 

This being the second one of those I read (the first was Rep. Don Young's comments almost word for word) I could no longer let it go. So I responded on facebook with this:

"There's a big difference between TAPS and Keystone. All of the TAPS oil was destined for the U.S. market. All the Keystone oil was to go overseas; the pipeline only linked the oil fields in Canada with the port at Houston. TAPS employs a whole lot more than the 35 permanent jobs expected from Keystone. The tar sands oil is the dirtiest oil imaginable and the company already has a terrible record of spills. How oil drilled for in a foreign country and sent to market in other foreign countries hurts the Alaska economy takes more explaining than any of us want to hear. Listen to Dick Derevan below, we are tired of being demonized by ignorance."

First of all I am damned tired of being called a radical environmentalist. Aren't we past that by now? That is so 1970s. But then that's where the missing senator's awareness seems to have stalled. Radical environmentalists have been the go-to boogymen for everything that goes wrong in Alaska for so long it has its own acronym. REVs are to blame for everything here.

There are more ideas I would love to add to that comment on his facebook page but Alaska's Republican senators and our only representative have a history of not listening to people who disagree with them, but do often try to convince us otherwise. As a matter of fact Rep. Don Young, the other one who criticized the president today, at one time said he only represented those people who voted for him.

One point that I wanted to hammer home was from the missing senator's last statement about ideology hurting the "boundless potential of our great nation."  I mean, how do 35 jobs and providing an avenue for dirty oil to be transported from Canada to foreign nations hurt the "boundless potential of our great nation?"

And as far as raising the specter of hurting middle class Americans, oh please, anonymous one, you are a yes-man in a party that has done everything it can to destroy the middle class in this country, so you better just shut up about that one.

I guess "standing up  to Obama" really means being critical after the fact. See earlier posts about rope-a-dope

Well, these revelations and rants got me past that one but foolishly I went on down the facebook and Twitter pages until I came across the revelations about a pro football player beating up his girlfriend.
Briefly summarizing: Greg Hardy, who at the time was playing for the Carolina Panthers, was accused and convicted of beating up his girlfriend. That conviction was eventually thrown out on appeal. He was punished by the NFL by being suspended for 10 games which eventually was reduced to four. Released by the Panthers and out of football for a year, he was picked up by the Dallas Cowboys this year and has had a starring role there this season. Then, today the police investigation materials including photographs of his girlfriend's bruises were released.

Where I first picked up on it was when Cowboys owner Jerry Jones defended Hardy and called him a leader and a "Dallas Cowboy" as if that lifted him above common societal obligations. This isn't the first time the NFL or a team has defended a guy who beat up a woman in his life, nor is it likely to be the last, but it is THIS time. There is a joke on the FXX comedy The League where a guy in a fantasy league refuses to draft players with criminal records. He loses badly. In almost every other occupation a convicted criminal is ostracized. In the NFL he is defended and continues to be paid millions for playing a game. How many of these have to happen before something serious is done about it?

Maybe what we need is for President Obama to take a look at it and maybe throw another rope-a-dope at the opponents before he's done. Give the missing senator and his cohorts in the Tea Baggers something more to whine about.

Maybe with all that, the pleasant evening could come back, maybe with one of the last lines of the song. For what it's worth I really don't want to wait for these lingering issues to be over:
 So open up your morning light,
And say a little prayer for right
You know that if we are to stay alive
Then see the love in every eye


  1. Del Tim, Excellent analysis of the missing man, he waits for the political candy man. If we listen to the current political dialog, the rich get richer and the middle class continues to diminish, with shrinking funds. It appears the missing man is attempting to create jobs in Ohio. Well done; Mr. President. The political candy man has been getting candy to all the GOP, I see Lisa has over $3 million in her re-election fund & she just filed two days ago. I wonder how much came from Alaskans? Keep the heat on the political misfits, you've acquired great knowledge of Alaska issues over your many active news reporting years, Good Work...

  2. I think the President will be appreciated in years to come. Future generations will be shocked at how unappreciated he was in his time and the puerile stupidity of the Congress working against him. He has achieved so much against all odds. This is just another example of how the things he does right are used against him.


Interesting quotations

· " “Always do sober what you said you'd do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut.” — Ernest Hemingway

When I write, I feel like an armless, legless man with a crayon in his mouth. Kurt Vonnegut

“If you wrote something for which someone sent you a cheque, if you cashed the cheque and it didn't bounce, and if you then paid the light bill with the money, I consider you talented.” Stephen King

The thing about ignornance is, you don't have to remain ignorant. — me again"

Never debate with someone who gets ink by the barrel" — George Hayes, former Alaska Attorney General who died recently

My dear Mr. Frost: two roads never diverge in a yellow wood. Three roads meet there. — @Shakespeareon Twitter

"The mark of a great shiphandler is never getting into situations that require great shiphandling," Adm. Ernest King, USN

Me: Does the restaurant have cute waitresses?

My friend Gail: All waitresses are cute when you're hungry.

I'm not a writer, but sometimes I push around words to see what happens. – Scott Berry

“The rivers of Alaska are strewn with the bones of men who made but one mistake” - Fred McGarry, a Nushagak Trapper

Many people hear voices when no one is there. Some of them are called mad and are shut up in rooms where they stared at walls all day. Others are called writers and they do pretty much the same thing. – Meg Chittenden

A non-writing writer is a monster courting insanity. – Franz Kafka

We are all immortal until the one day we are not. – me again

If the muse is late, start without her – Peter S. Beagle

Substitute ‘damn’ every time you’re inclined to write ‘very;’ your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be. ~Mark Twain Actually you could do the same thing with the word "really" as in "really cold."

If you are looking for an experience that will temper your vanity, this is it. There's no one to impress when you're alone on the trap line. – Michael Carey quoting his father's journal

Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing. – Benjamin Franklin

It’s nervous work. The state you need to write in is the state that others are paying large sums of money to get rid of. – Shirley Hazzard

So far as I can remember, there is not one word in the Gospels in praise of intelligence -- Bertrand Russell

You know that I always just wanted to have a small ship to take stuff from a place that had a lot of that stuff to a place that did not have a lot of that stuff and so prosper.—Jackie Faber, “The Wake of the Lorelei Lee”

If you attack the arguer instead of the argument, you lose both

If an insurance company won’t pay for damages caused by an “act of God,” shouldn’t it then have to prove the existence of God? – I said that

I used to think getting old was about vanity—but actually it’s about losing people you love. Getting wrinkles is trivial. – Eugene O’Neill

German General to Swiss General: “You have only 500,000 men in your army; what would you do if I invaded with 1 million men?”

Swiss General: “Well, I suppose every one of my soldiers would need to fire twice.”

Writing is the only thing that when I do it, I don’t feel I should be doing something else.—Gloria Steinem

Exceed your bandwidth—sign on the wall of the maintenance shop at the West Coast/Alaska Tsunami Warning Center

One thing I do know, if you keep at it, you usually wind up getting something done.—Patricia Monaghan

Do you want to know what kind of person makes the best reporter? I’ll tell you. A borderline sociopath. Someone smart, inquisitive, stubborn, disorganized, chaotic, and in a perpetual state of simmering rage at the failings of the world.—Brett Arends

It is a very simple mind that only knows how to spell a word one way.—Andrew Jackson

3:30 is too late or too early to do anything—Rene Descartes

Everything is okay when it’s 50-below as long as everything is okay. – an Alaskan in Tom Walker’s “The Seventymile Kid”

You can have your own opinion but you can’t have your own science.—commenter arguing on a story about polar bears and global warming

He looks at three ex wives as a good start—TV police drama

Talkeetna: A friendly little drinking town with a climbing problem.—a handmade bumper sticker

“You’re either into the wall or into the show”—Marco Andretti on giving it all to qualify last at the 2011 Indy 500

Makeup is not for the faint of heart—the makeup guerrilla

“I’m going to relax in a very adult manner.”—Danica Patrick after sweating it out and qualifying half an hour before Andretti

“Asking Congress to come back is like asking a mugger to come back because he forgot your wallet.”—a roundtable participant on Fox of all places

As Republicans go further back in the conception process to define when life actually begins, I am beginning to think the eventual definition will be life begins in the beer I was drinking when I met her.—me again

Hunting is a “critical element for the long-term conservation of wood bison.”—a state department of Fish and Game official explaining why the state would not go along with a federal plan to reintroduce wood bison in Alaska because the agreement did not specifically allow hunting

Each day do something that won’t compute – anon

I can’t belive I still have to protest this shit – a sign carriend by an elderly woman at an Occupy demonstration

Life should be a little nuts or else it’s just a bunch of Thursdays strung together—Kevin Costner as Beau Burroughs in “Rumor has it”

You’re just a wanker whipping up fear —Irish President Michael D. Higgins to a tea party radio announcer

Being president doesn’t change who you are; it reveals who you are—Michelle Obama

Things sports announcers say

"… there's a fearlessment about him …"

"He's got to have the lead if he's going to win this race."

"Kansas has always had the ability to score with the basketball."

"NFL to put computer chips in balls." Oh, that's gotta hurt.

"Now that you're in the finals you have to run the race that's going to get you on the podium."

"It's very important for both sides that they stay on their feet."

This is why you get to hate sportscasters. Kansas beats Texas for the first time since 1938. So the pundits open their segment with the question "let's talk about what went wrong." Wrong? Kansas WON a football game! That's what went RIGHT!

"I brought out the thermostat to show you how cold it is here." Points to a thermometer reading zero in Minneapolis.

"It's tough to win on the road when you turn the ball over." Oh, really? Like you can do all right if you turn the ball over playing at home?

Cliches so imbedded in sportscasters' minds they can't help themselves: "Minnesota fell from the ranks of the undefeated today." What ranks? They were the only undefeated team left.

A good one: A 5'10" player went up and caught a pass off a defensive back over six feet tall. The quote? "He's got some hops."

Best homonym of the day so far: "It's all tied. Alabama 34, Kentucky 3." Oh, Tide.

"Steve Hooker commentates on his Olympic pole vault gold medal." When "comments" just won't do.

"He's certainly capable of the top ten, maybe even higher than that."

"Atlanta is capable of doing what they're doing."

"Biyombo, one of seven kids from the Republic of Congo." In the NBA? In America? In his whole country?

"You can't come out and be aggressive but you can't come out and be unaggressive."

"They're gonna be in every game they play!"

"First you have to get two strikes on the hitter before you get the strikeout."

"The game ended in the final seconds." You have to wonder when the others ended or are they still going on?

How is a team down by one touchdown before the half "totally demoralized?"

"If they score runs they will win."

"I think the matchup is what it is"

After a play a Houston defender was on his knees, his head on the ground and his hand underneath him appeared to clutch a very sensitive part of the male anatomy. He rolled onto his back and quickly removed his hand. (Remember the old Cosby routine "you cannot touch certain parts of your body?") Finally they helped the guy to the sideline and then the replay was shown. In it the guy clearly took a hard knee between his thighs. As this was being shown, one of the announcers says, "It looks like he hurt his shoulder." The other agrees and then they both talk about how serious a shoulder injury can be. Were we watching the same game?

"Somebody is going to be the quarterback or we're going to see a new quarterback."

"If you're gonna play running back in the SEC you're gonna take hits."

"That was a playmaker making a play."

Best headlines ever

Sister hits moose on way to visit sister who hit moose.

Man loses his testicles after attempting to smoke weed through a SCUBA tank

Church Mutual Insurance won't cover Church's flood damage because it's 'an act of God'

Homicide victims rarely talk to police

Meerkat Expert Attacked Monkey Handler Over Love Affair With Llama Keeper

GOP congressman opposes gun control because gay marriage leads to bestiality

Owner of killer bear chokes to death on sex toy

Support for legalizing pot hits all-time high

Give me all your money or my penguin will explode

How zombie worms have sex in whale bones

Crocodile steals zoo worker's lawn mower

Woman shot by oven while trying to cook waffles

Nude beach blowjob jet ski fight leads to wife's death

Woman stabs husband with squirrel for not buying beer Christmas Eve