Wednesday, November 29, 2006
This is the most sensitive appointment in Congress with access to all our nation’s top secrets. Normally it is based on seniority in Congress but prior to 911 the Democrats seem to have lost sight of that.
Rep Jane Harmon, California, the senior Democrat on the Committee and normally next in line for Chairperson, was promised the top Intelligence post by the Democrats when she ran for Congress after losing the California Governors race. Nancy does not like her.
Second ranking Rep Alcee Hastings, a Florida Black backed by the Black Caucus was impeached by the House in 1988 resulting from FBI bribery sting. So he was thrown out of office as a judge and won a seat to Congress. Nancy doesn’t like him either.
So her top two Democratic choices for the nation’s most sensitive Committee Chairmanship were a loser in the governor’s race and an impeached judge. What in the world is congress thinking or at least the Democratic leadership? Can’t say as if I blame Nancy. At least this time she’s not backing someone who was involved in a scandal.
Webb apparently doesn’t realize the campaign is over and responded he wants to see his son brought home and the President replied I didn’t ask you that, I asked how your son was doing.
Webb was so angered to be rebuked for not answering according to one of his aides he had to resist slugging the President at the State Dinner hosted by the President. Now the fact the Webb aide had to make a big deal out of Webb almost slugging the Commander in Chief says very little for the character or temper of the newly elected thug from Virginia.
The St. Clements Island museum, honoring the first landing of settlers in Maryland way back in 1634, has the daunting task of working to preserve history in an area with Washington, D.C., Baltimore, Annapolis and other wealthy and populated locales all with their own history to tout. Yet we are the oldest of all of them in terms of historical significance and the only one smart enough to locate in Coltons Point.
Sheila Gibbons Hiebert is President of the Museum and we hope she will contribute articles to the Coltons Point Times about the museum and our history if she ever gets time to catch her breath. In the meantime you can all help us get noticed by contributing to the museum Annual Appeal drive. Drop off all the money you can muster for a worthy cause.
I want to suggest the museum sponsor a Great River Raft Race Regatta as a fund raiser and the on shore celebration would draw participants, fans, tourists, and media to the museum, making the Bailey’s very happy. It might also mean there would be no bombing of the fish by the Navy for a day. Think about it.
I believe it must start long before the elections. Under our constitution everyone is equal, or at least assured equal opportunity. Why are they not equal in politics? More than half of the Americans of voting age are not even registered to vote. Yet voting should not be a bureaucratic privilege, a reward for those willing to go through the nonsense to prove they are able to vote by registering. Why not give everyone the right to vote when they turn 18 years old period?
This could work if we also corrected a few flaws in the voting system. For instance many people don’t register for two reasons. First they are not drawn to the two political parties yet they are penalized for being an independent in many states. Second they resent that voter registration lists are used for jury duty pools, and are sold to the political parties and subject to aggressive political direct marketing throughout the year.
As for the first concern, let everyone be an independent on the rolls, and let them declare for a party ballot when they go in to vote in the primary, whichever party they choose to support. In this way candidates would not be inclined to give a different pitch in the primary than in the general election just to appease the party activists.
If everyone were a legal voter the jury pool would be vastly expanded reducing the times one might get called. This would address part of the second concern. If the finance reforms I propose later are adopted it would not matter if the parties had the voter lists for much of the frenzy of direct solicitation now is for money to pay for advertising. Of course some meaningful legal reforms might eliminate much of the unnecessary litigation that already clogs up our system and forces a need for all those jurors.
Voting is a right and a responsibility. Our democratic system claims to be the world model for democratic government of the people and by the people, yet half the people do not even participate. Isn’t it about time we finally give that right to all the citizens?
Political commercials should be banned period. They are the most costly element of campaigns, the largest waste of money. They are intrusive and often stretch the truth. It is impossible to tell whether candidates, political parties or special interest groups aligned with either candidate are behind this extravaganza.
The government owns the airways so the government can ban political ads from television and radio. As a condition for licensing and renewals of the TV and radio stations, require them to set aside a very limited amount of time for messages from the candidates. Any other coverage must come from news coverage, not paid advertising, and that means the candidates better say something meaningful to get coverage.
Campaign budgets for paid advertising dwarf all other costs, and the cost of raising money to pay for ads is often the second most expensive cost. Eliminate all paid political ads and you save over two-thirds of the costs of most campaigns. Hundreds of millions of dollars could be saved in an election cycle. There is the added benefit of clearing the TV screen of the political blitz. No one believes them anyway, so why allow them?
Voter participation is yet another valid and neglected concern. Only half the people are registered to vote, but often times only about half of those registered even bother to vote. Thus, American democracy may well be based on the consensus of less than one fourth of all eligible voters, hardly a viable democracy model for the world.
How do we get them to vote? First, we make primary election day a paid statewide holiday in each state the day of the vote. No one would have an excuse for not being able to vote. The general election day in November would be a national holiday, an American holiday to celebrate our freedom and democracy, as in the Constitution and Bill of Rights, something we oddly don’t celebrate already. We celebrate wars, birthdays, holidays and revolutionaries declaring independence, but don’t honor the very foundation of our democracy left us by our founding fathers in these timeless documents.
We can straighten out the mess, we can clean up the airways and we can have participatory democracy if we have courage to demand accountability from our leaders and throw them out when they fail to deliver. That is what democracy is supposed to be all about. Ask your Senators and Congressmen to support these changes and see how they respond. Write, call, email and challenge them to deliver. Remember your rights and remember your responsibilities.
About the author:
He has been active in 32 campaigns encompassing local, state, governors, congress, senate and presidential races. He worked for the executive and legislative branches at the state and federal level and even drafted opinions for Supreme Court justices in the judiciary.
Serving in such capacities as chief of staff, communications director, and assistant state treasurer he has experienced government at all levels (mayors, governors & presidents) and all branches. Yet he also played many roles in campaigns including managing US senate and house races and media in presidential campaigns.
Having worked for prominent Republicans, Democrats and Independents he also served as the Deputy Arrangements Chairman for the 1972 Republican National Convention in the most dominant presidential victory in our nation’s history.
Monday, November 27, 2006
Black Friday & Cyber Monday
If you followed the news you would think Americans blew their budgets on these two high volume holiday sales days. Black Friday saw about $15 billion spent at retail and online while Cyber Monday recorded $600-625 million in all probability. Expect online sales to peak about December 12 at about $685-700 million and the total holiday spending online to be about $27 billion. All holiday spending this year is expected to be about $457 billion.
For comparison purposes, in four years the US government has spent a total of about $350 billion for the war in Iraq. In other words, if everyone would give up their holiday spending for one year and give it to the Defense Department, we could finance the Iraq war tax free for the next five years. All we are asking is you give up your holiday gifts for one year to help balance the federal budget.
The Middle East Revisited
In earlier stories I mentioned the biggest loser of the elections may be Israel if the Democrats didn’t lie and actually pull our troops out of Iraq regardless of the consequences. Three civil wars are ready to explode in Iraq, Lebanon and Palestine and it may not matter what the USA does in Iraq.
If the Democrats do bring home the troops, for sure the bloodshed will intensify and in the end the fundamental Muslims will probably win since death and human sacrifice is acceptable to them. Hard line Muslims in Iran, Syria, Pakistan, Afghanistan and other Middle East nations will be aligned with the civil wars and will embrace the winners and then all of them will most likely turn their attention to the underlying cause affecting everything they do in the Middle East, the destruction of Israel.
Oh yes, the Democrats may very well pull us out of Iraq, but before the blood has finished flowing we may find ourselves in a far more dangerous quagmire of being the last line of defense for Israel against all of the Arab world with no support from our long standing world allies. We shall see.
Our current Administration has misjudged the situation just as practically every Administration has. There is nothing current about the tragic events in the Middle East wars as religious warfare and persecution have been an integral part of Middle East history since the beginning of recorded time.
I suppose the lines are rather blurred between religious versus cultural wars but the result is the same. In the name of God, Allah, Yahweh, Jehovah or Mohammad prejudice thrives, hatred dominates, tolerance is non-existent and fear is instilled by all sides. Short of civil war, continued genocide and the ever-present prospect of World War III, some form of Divine intervention may be the only thing left between self-destruction and salvation.
Campaign Reform in America
A second issue of note is campaign reform and ethics in government as they have been promised by both parties during the last election. The true test of the effectiveness of elected officials and their representation of the people is the progress being made toward meaningful campaign reform. Make no mistake, lies dominate this issue from the mouths of Republicans, Democrats, House members, Senators, presidents, governors and a host of state and local elected officials.
The record, individually and collectively, is the most pitiful example of political double talk and double crossing in our history. Joe Six Pack, the average American citizen, has been sold a bill of goods and conditioned to accept those tarnished goods by the politicians, the media, special interests, corporations, unions and everyone else who benefits from maintaining the status quo.
Greed rules the financial world of Wall Street, the political world of our nation’s capital, the advertising world of Madison Avenue, the entertainment world of Hollywood, and just about every place of consequence in between. So what are we to do? Sit back and watch? Act as if nothing is wrong? Pray? I say information is knowledge, knowledge can lead to wisdom, and wisdom can give us the creative energy needed to survive in spite of the system.
In the days ahead I will give you information to illustrate the flaws with our so called reform efforts and point out very practical ways to give us meaningful reform. What you do with the information is up to you.
Sunday, November 26, 2006
Haughty Helen has written to inform us quite politely that regarding her Checkered future she personally prefers the Big Buford, not the Steakhouse Burger as we implied. Now if that doesn’t mean anything to you obviously you haven’t been to the Checkered/Rally Burger joints around here so you be the judge, here are the two burgers.
Steakhouse Double Cheddarburger
The Steakhouse Burger is a Double Cheddarburger complemented with A.1. Steak Sauce, bacon, lettuce, pickles and onions on a toasted sesame bun.
Big Buford (Haughty Helen’s fav)
This signature burger is two juicy, all-beef patties and two slices of American cheese on a toasted bun. It’s loaded with mayonnaise, ketchup, pickles, onions, crisp lettuce, tomatoes and mustard.
Upset but silent
Some CPT readers, or former readers, have been reported as upset with some of the rather endearing descriptions of the local characters in the Times. We try very hard to be as irreverent as possible and make no claims that we can portray people accurately when it comes to the degree of dumbness, corniness, oddness, ordinariness or any other characteristic as the Pointers are in a league of their own. Our hope is that a sense of humor and appreciation of literary satire will allow people to enjoy the Times. Get your serious stuff from the self-proclaimed media gurus, religious fanatics, and others getting paid big bucks to brainwash an unsuspecting public.
In Search of the Mysterious Ink Spots
Inky has challenged the Times to discover the secret places she goes to during her extended walks around the Point so we are asking the help of readers to identify the mysterious Ink Spots frequented by Inky.
Local celebrity Update
A hearty holiday welcome home goes to a couple of hearty babes from the Point as recently Nancy by the Beach got a pacemaker and Hotrod Hammett got herself a triple bypass. Hospitals sent them home in record time as they were driving the staff crazy.
John Wilkes Booth Sightings
We are updating our burgeoning file with reported sightings of the ghost of John Wilkes Booth walking the highways and byways of the Point. Seems Dogman might not be the only one to witness the chilling apparition. If you have information on the whereabouts of the Ghost of John Wilkes Booth or have experienced sightings in the fog let us know. A full blown tourist promotional campaign is being planned for the spring by the Diner gang.
Saturday, November 25, 2006
BONAFIDE GHOST CONFIRMED
After years of reported sightings and strange goings on a team of researchers with the aid of a local paranormal investigator have confirmed the existence and identity of the shadowy apparition that has been haunting Coltons Point since the mid 19th century.
This story would be highly suspect were it not for the involvement of Dogman Joe, the greatest cynic in Maryland history, a man who doubts anything and everything he does not personally experience. Just last Monday Dogman was driving his Ford down 242 in the evening and he caught a glimpse of a mysterious man standing along the road where 242 and Muddy Creek Road cross.
Glancing in the rear view mirror he could see in the dark that the man was bearded, his hair and beard were disheveled from the wind swept rain, and he stood in a long brown top coat at the side of the road. Concerned about the safety of this poor gentleman Dogman pulled to a stop to back up and offer him a ride. When he threw the Ford into reverse and started back up the road the man was gone.
Dogman backed up the truck to the exact location of the sighting and searched the woods on either side of the road. No footprints and no man, he vanished without a trace. But the seasoned old codger did feel a strange chill in the air and the hair on the back of his neck stood straight up. It was a sense of fear he hadn’t felt since being shot at by his future father-in-law when his wife-to-be was just a young un in school.
When a no nonsense man comes to you with such a chilling tale you have no choice but to take it very seriously and that we did here at the CPT. First we enlisted the aid of a sketch artist to recreate the face and then we approached the top scientific facility in the USA to investigate the claim, the Duke University Paranormal Evaluation Department (DUPED).
The findings are in and they are astonishing. The stranger was identified by historical research, by matching the artists sketch, and by the exceptional body of available information from every police and federal investigative service in existence, something never experienced in previous reports of this nature.
The Ghost haunting Coltons Point, the one documented by Dogman Joe, is none other than John Wilkes Booth, the assassin of President Abraham Lincoln. After the murder on April 14, 1865 Booth disappeared into Maryland and was tracked to Dr. Mudd’s home where his leg was treated the next day, a home just up the road from Coltons Point. From April 16-22 Booth was in disguise and disappeared into the woods of Maryland, less than 10 miles from the Point.
If you wanted to vanish in Maryland there is no better place than Coltons Point and we discovered Booth was waiting for a ship from England to land and take him to Europe where he would be a celebrated hero. Unfortunately for him, this English ship had as much luck landing at the Point as the previous English landing in 1634. Eventually Booth made his way to Virginia and was caught trying to reach a more favorable landing site.
So you be the judge of this stranger than life coincidence. Check out the sketch of the ghost. Look at the map compiled by the National Park Service tracing Booth’s flight after assassinating the President. And consider this, he fled to Maryland to be treated by Dr. Mudd, and the sighting was at Muddy Creek Road.
Analysis indicates Booth came back to haunt the Point since the treacherous waters of the Potomac at Coltons Point prevented him from being rescued by the English ship. If only the Bailey’s million dollar lighthouse were there history might have been very different. Be prepared for a tourist invasion in search of the ghost of John Wilkes Booth and keep an eye out for the long haired bearded and disheveled man in the long brown top coat still hiding in the Point.
Our next paranormal investigation will focus on the potential new shrine at the Point, the Arrow Beer Bar, where the image of the Holy Mother Mary was discovered in the mold on top of the potato chip dip from the Potomac Gardens Store.
To properly prepare you for the holidays we asked our resident holiday specialist for some hints on how the have the best holiday possible. Hillbilly Joe was gracious enough to offer his tips for the Holiday Hints.
Don’t ever piss off your mama at holiday time, especially is she is a good cook.
Before accepting any holiday invitations ask for the menu.
Eat the turkey, don’t be one.
Always place yourself strategically under the mistletoe and hope for the best.
Always sing Christmas carols in a crowd so you can mouth the words and no one will notice.
Send cards to anyone who has something you need.
Don’t ever try and have a bigger Santa and Snowman than Hillbilly Joe.
Save any bells you get for gifts and don’t want for Hillbilly’s mama’s bell collection.
Eggnog without booze is like a Steakburger without meat.
Never eat yellow snow.
Tuesday, November 21, 2006
Sharon Balenger, sculptor extraordinaire, is on permanent exhibit in the compound while Rebecca Wolf is taking time off from home demolition to be an exhibitionist. Balenger claims her sculptural figures “freeze people in moments of life” though I didn’t find them particularly cold, even if they are very cool. The Wolf Woman likes to reflect the earth and sea in her pottery so I must apologize to her for mistaking a pottery piece for a glass of water and drinking it.
Rumor has it several critics of last years exhibition, people who mysteriously disappeared since, are recognizable in this years figures frozen in moments of life, the pieces with the big mouths open. Be careful what you say around caged artisans, they just might conjure a Coltons curse.
Dress up and get down – to the Artists Compound - on the Left Bank of 242 looking north from Potomac Gardens and the Arrow Beer Bar.
Sharon Balenger and Rebecca Wolf
Dec. 2 and Dec. 9, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Reception from 4:30-7 p.m. on Dec. 2
Colton's Point Artist Studio and Gallery
20259 Colton’s Point Road, Colton’s Point
The pieces in the show are inspired by the people and natural beauty of Southern Maryland and other areas of the United States. Featured items include sculptures that freeze people in moments of life and pottery that reflects earth and sea.
Directions: Studio is across from the Coltons Point Post Office on 242.
From Hughesville, take Rt. 5 South, rt. on Rt. 242 to Coltons Point.
From: LaPlata, take 301 South, left on Bud’s Creek Road, right on 242.
From Leonardtown, west on Route 234 to the flashing four-way stoplight in Clements at Route 242. Turn left (south) on Route 242/Colton's Point Road and go nine miles. Colton’s Point Artist Studio and Gallery is on the right, one block before the road ends in Colton’s Point.
From London (UK), west over Ireland, Greenland, Nova Scotia and Long Island to Mattingly’s Air Strip/Insurance/Funeral Home/Construction/Auto Body/Texaco/xcavating /Legal/Political Headquarters. Take the Mattingly cab to Breton Bay, catch the Mattingly yacht up the Potomac to the forbidden zone at St. Clements Island where King Bob will meet you in the Forest Service skiff and take you to shore where Duke will pick you up with the John Deere and safely deposit you at the Art Gallery. From there on you’re on your own.
Monday, November 20, 2006
This is the stupidest newspaper I ever read. What makes you think anything in this rag is important to anyone else?
Better Than You
Dear Better Than You:
It takes a finely tuned degree of stupidity to discover the stupidity in life. Be thankful for the blessings in life you received that allow you to get your miserable perspective out of the way early.
Sometimes I think you are too negative toward the government, the media and our American lifestyle. Can’t you find some good in everything?
Could you please send me a pair of the rose colored glasses you wear. We must be seeing different pictures. What kind of medication do they have you on? People like you belong in Congress where we need a perspective that sees good in all wrong.
Why do you pick on some of the wonderful people of Coltons Point? They all sound like such beautiful neighbors to have. Especially Hillbilly Joe, one of my favorites to read about
Must be tough being Hillbilly’s mother. You give birth to the little rascal. You raise him like any hill folk would. You try to protect him from the dangers of life and society. And now you write letters to the editor to keep his reputation from being sullied. Isn’t it time to get a new project? At 40-something Hillbilly seems entirely capable of fending for hisself.
I just think it is a shame you are so disparaging about the cute Lighthouse in Coltons Point! You should be tarred and feathered.
Well the Lighthouse is gone like I reported. In the ensuing darkness the sea gulls and fish are helplessly crashing into the piers and rocks. For all we know with the lights out some oil tanker named Valdez II may crash into the jagged jettys of the Point engulfing all wildlife in a sticky, tarry mess. I figure if I wait for that to happen, then jump into the water, I can fulfill your wish and be tarred and feathered with minimum effort. Are your lights out too?
Does Coltons Point really need you and the Coltons Point Times. We were doing so well without you.
Society to Clean Up the Point
Dear Pointed Society:
Of course Coltons Point needs us in order to achieve its proper place in history. Someone must push the story to the unsuspecting masses. I mean Caesar had his Mark Anthony. Sampson had Delilah. Goliath had David. Batman had the Joker. Dorothy had the Evil Witch of the East. Just think of us as an inspiration for hypothetical greatness, a chronicler of legends, a maker of myth, a founder of fable, and all the other roles television news and the “free press” contributes to our information starved society. Or just move away.
Special Investigative Reports – Hillbilly Joe Snags Exclusive Interview with Reclusive Publisher Hayseed
Hayseed: Sure, you know anyone who can ask them?
Hillbilly: I’m asking the questions Hayseed! By the way, why do they call you Hayseed?
Hayseed: I’m born and bred in Iowa and when I went to school at the University of Arizona the guys out west called me Hayseed.
Hillbilly: I thought Iowa was known for corn, state fairs and Great Plains.
Hayseed: It was but what do Arizona and California kids know about those things?
Hillbilly: A little dumb were they?
Hayseed: I think it’s a requirement of undergraduate school.
Hillbilly: You do anything in high school worth mentioning?
Hayseed: Same as everyone else, a little this and a little that.
Hillbilly: You mean like roping cows or riding bulls or whatever you cowboys do?
Hayseed: Naw. It was more like we dated cows and shot the bull. Just kidding. I did ride a Brahma bull once though.
Hillbilly: What kind of bull you laying on me?
Hayseed: You know, those mean bulls with a hump on their backs.
Hillbilly: And just how long did you ride this humpback bull?
Hayseed: Long enough for my butt to touch the hump and in seconds I was airborne.
Hillbilly: You get hurt or fall on your head or something? That would help explain you.
Hayseed: Just my pride, manhood and dignity.
Hillbilly: So what did you do then?
Hayseed: Brushed off the dirt, wiped off the tears, and got back on that mean old monster, was instantly thrown again, got up and got back on the beast and was thrown again, like it was dejà vu all over again.
Hillbilly: Like in Groundhog Day?
Hayseed: Yeah, like Bill Murray but after getting thrown 8 times I finally got smart and told the fire-breathing bull the pasture was all his.
Hillbilly: So you have a happy childhood?
Hayseed: Nope, I was too busy trying to stay alive until I could get out of there.
Hillbilly: Then what did you do?
Hayseed: Became a reporter, worked for politicians, wrote stuff, more of the same.
Hillbilly: Where did you do more of the same?
Hayseed: After Iowa and Arizona there was Nebraska, Virginia, California, New Jersey, Kentucky and Maryland.
Hillbilly: And you did more of the same everywhere?
Hayseed: More or less.
Hillbilly: So you a Democrat, Republican or Independent?
Hayseed: I’m more like a political atheist?
Hillbilly: What in the world is a political atheist?
Hayseed: Someone who treats all parties with equal distain.
Hillbilly: Name a Democrat you helped.
Hayseed: John Kennedy.
Hillbilly: Name a Republican you helped.
Hayseed: Ronald Reagan.
Hillbilly: Name an Independent you helped.
Hayseed: Ross Perot.
Hillbilly: Who the hell are those people?
Hayseed: Just some political hacks.
Hillbilly: If you were president what would you do?
Hayseed: First grant Coltons Point Colony status. Find intelligent people for the intelligence agencies. Bring all the troops back from around the world and invade Canada since we need a war we can win to boost morale. Annex Mexico and make all Mexicans American citizens so we can blame our problems on them. Set up a trade agreement with China that for every Chinese food joint here we get a McDonalds there. Implement a worldwide immigration policy of trading disgruntled Americans for foreigners who want to be in America. Appoint Howard Stern Ambassador to Afghanistan, OJ Simpson Ambassador to Pakistan, Rush Limbaugh Ambassador to North Korea, Jerry Falwell Ambassador to Iran, Larry King Ambassador to Sudan, and Barbara Wah Wah Ambassador to Indonesia.
Hillbilly: What would those ambassadors accomplish?
Hayseed: Our new ambassadors would cause so many problems there the countries would cease being threats to world security. You know the old doctrine, divide and conquer.
Hillbilly: Are those places all countries?
Hayseed: Oh man, maybe I’ll send you to the United Nations for OJT.
Hillbilly: I don’t like OJ and I don’t like tea, unless it is served by Haughty.
Hillbilly: What characteristic are you looking for in new Ambassadors?
Hayseed: Egotistical psychos keeping America from ever achieving a state of peace. Sort of the mouthpiece destabilizer core from America.
Hillbilly: That’s bad man.
Hayseed: No worse than the reality we face now.
Hillbilly: My brain is overloaded. Can we continue this later?
Hayseed: Sure, you’ve got from now until the conclusion of the End Times to wrap it up.
Hillbilly: I need a Bud, I need the Duke, I need my John Deere, and oh my head hurts. Why did I ever agree to do this interview? Where is Paris Hilton and the Simple Life?
Thursday, November 16, 2006
It’s Thursday night and the airwaves are filled with nonsense so I decided to update the CPT. First, as anyone with nothing to do knows, Nancy Pelosi won the House Speaker post today, then promptly lost her first leadership test by a landslide. But that’s okay, she still smiled and said everything is alright with the new Democrat majority.
Hospital induced infections – the new medical nightmare
I learned yesterday that hospitals are now one of the highest causes of death in America. Isn’t that a hoot. Hillbilly Joe says if we closed all hospitals and schools in the nation the death rate from dangerous infections would drop drastically. Actually Hillbilly doesn’t talk like that. He’d say “I knew they were a cesspool of bacteria!”
Back to the facts, 250 people per day die from infections contracted in the hospital, over 100,000 deaths per year. Our benevolent big brother makes McDonalds tell us what’s in a burger, but no hospital is required to tell you how many people get infections or die from infections while being “cured” in their facility. Don’t you think this would be an important product warning?
I mean cigarette packages have warnings because lung cancer is the biggest killer of all cancers with around 160,000 deaths per year. Breast cancer is all over the news yet annual breast cancer deaths are less than half (40,970) of the hospital infection deaths. Why aren’t movie stars on TV warning us of the hospital infection deaths that kill twice as many people as breast cancer!
When you consider that the top causes of hospital infections are a failure to wash hands after touching a patient, and a failure to sterilize items such as blood pressure testing equipment after use then it is obvious the vast majority of hospital deaths are cause by neglect and could be eliminated immediately. Next time you go to the hospital ask them the infection rate and the deaths from infection. You have a right to know.
Barbara Wah Wah Special
On TV tonight the grand old dame of TV, Barbara Walters, is revealing the first of two parts on her 30 biggest mistakes in 30 years of broadcasting. Wow, just one mistake a year. Don’t you think ABC TV could come up with something better than Barbara’s goofs for prime time TV. I can hardly understand the lady and sure don’t want to hear about mistakes, they were pretty obvious the first time around. She should have had 31, the last being going on TV in the first place.
Network News Ratings Drop Anchor
After a flash to the top of the ratings when she first began, Katie Couric of CBS has dropped anchor and settled at the bottom of the news ratings in the customary role perfected by Dan Rather. Brian Williams at NBC was #1 election week with 9.8 million viewers, ABC with Charles Gibson was #2 with 8.8 million viewers, and Katie was back at #3 with 7.7 million viewers. Normally entertainers do not make a smooth transition to trusted news authorities and things appear to be pretty normal right now.
For the record the big three networks prime time news shows have lost 34% of their total audience the last decade, 44% since 1980 and 59% since 1969, the year they started the downward cycle. There are 110.2 million TV households in the USA and a total of 26.3 million watch the big three network newscasts. What happened to the other 84 million homes not watching the news? I guess 75% of our population knows better than to get news from the networks.
I got the latest report on the ads per hour and you won’t believe the results. When you sit down to watch a prime time network series you get 21 minutes and 3 seconds of ads on average per hour. If it is a reality show, and many, many are, you get 25 minutes and 6 seconds of ads per hour, and for Late Night with Letterman or Leno you get 35 minutes and 41 seconds of ads per hour. Can you believe that? Actual program content runs from 24 to 39 minutes per hour!
Save time and frustration – turn the TV off!
If you follow the advice of the professional hucksters on TV your body will be loaded with antibiotics, steroids, hormones and other foreign substances to a degree never experienced before. So the question is, if all this is taking place in the good old USA, why are we so sick? If our medical treatment and prevention is the best in the world why do we have the highest rates of some diseases like cancer and heart disease of most nations in the world? Why are diseases we thought were conquered like polio and smallpox returning stronger than ever?
Well, seems we’ve studied about everything but the most important thing of all, what the long term effect of all those preventive and treatment programs are doing to our bodies. We were born with a natural immune system to protect us and spend our entire lives trying to destroy it with unnatural injections, pills and other treatments.
We believe that drug companies peddling their latest miracle drug should be held financially liable for the long term consequences of those treatments even if that liability puts them out of business forever. Humans are not lab rats intended to be subjected to the whims and profit motives of the corporate healers.
When did we forget that we need cures, not maintenance, to eliminate diseases, not extend life with the disease in an altered state, we need treatment that stops because the disease is cured, not a lifetime dependence on prescription drugs. Truth is we need to change the focus of the medical research community.
If the federal government and non-profit organizations put up much of the billions and billions of medical research dollars then why are the pharmaceutical companies and doctors the only ones who profit from the work? The government should get the profits if government money is responsible for the drug or treatment. I bet many new wonder drugs would not be sold if the profits went to the government. Better still we would quickly find out which companies were only interested in the bottom line rather than public health.
Former Vice President and Maryland Governor Spiro Agnew was a strange creature but one thing he said we should have taken to heart 25 years ago and we might not be in this mess. Spiro said America was on a “collective national trip” with prescription drugs, and the legal drugs were more dangerous than illegal drugs.
As long as we are on this legal drug kick let me tell you something else. Our wonderful billion dollar pharmaceutical companies are running TV ads telling how they donate $5 billion a year by giving drugs for free to the poor and others. What a nice thought for Christmas, except the drug companies are giving away billions and still making a gross profit.
Are the drugs being given away really needed by the poor? Are they not the result of profit driven over-production in the first place? Do the companies not get a tax write off for the charitable donation? Since they are still making a profit, is the cost of this effort not already being paid by the regular customers like me and you?
I say the odds of getting well are better with Chinese Herbalists, Medicine Men and Women and Shamans than with the western medical world and before you pop the next pill you should think about what I’ve said.
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
We all know that we are at the end of the highway in many more ways than literally. Elected officials show up for elections but never between them. Regular maintenance of roads, ditches and signs, well, you could die before it gets done. Thank goodness we have no street lights, stop lights or sidewalks because they would never get fixed.
Phone service is still at the 1950’s service levels, cable can’t even get the main channels to come in consistently, DSL high speed phone lines don’t even exist, and cell phones don’t work here. You get the drift? We are the swampland of the 6th district and government officials would rather put the whole Point in a museum and forget about it.
But that’s okay because when you look at the other towns around the state getting the attention of the government things look pretty good down here. There is a way we can solve the problems of officials trying to figure out what to do with us, and protect ourselves in the process. That involves the Referendum.
No Hillbilly, I didn’t say a dumb referee, I said Referendum.
CONSTITUTION OF MARYLAND
(added by Chapter 673, Acts of 1914, ratified Nov. 2, 1915)
SECTION 1. (a) The people reserve to themselves power known as The Referendum, by petition to have submitted to the registered voters of the State, to approve or reject at the polls, any Act, or part of any Act of the General Assembly, if approved by the Governor, or, if passed by the General Assembly over the veto of the Governor;
(b) The provisions of this Article shall be self-executing; provided that additional legislation in furtherance thereof and not in conflict therewith may be enacted.
That is the Maryland Referendum law and we can use it to our advantage. If you read all the provisions which are most certainly designed to confuse and mislead the public it is a wonder any Referendums get passed but hope is eternal in Coltons Point so this is our task. Informed residents of the Point must come up with the language necessary to outwit the witless in our Referendum but it can be done.
To understand the Referendum you need to look at the history of the Point. John Smith explored the Maryland region in 1608 and a colony was attempted but failed in 1621. In 1634 two ships from England arrived with 140 Catholic settlers, refugees from religious persecution in jolly old England, and landed at St. Clements Island just off the Point. After seeing the Natives on shore they packed up and moved down to St. Marys and started the first settlement in Maryland.
So the first settlers of the colony rejected the Point and that is the basis of the Referendum. If we were not good enough for them then we most certainly should not be good enough for the far more sophisticated State of Maryland. I mean the state and county services here, or lack thereof, show how much they are willing to invest in our future.
We want to return to the good old colonial days, be dropped from the state, and save the state and county all those funds they appropriate but never spend here. Our Referendum is to Establish Coltons Point as a Permanent Historical site and return it to Full Colonial Status Independent of any State or County Government. What do you think?
Democrats Win - Oil Prices Increase
Been listening to the news the last few days desperately searching for anything of interest to report and about the only news was oil prices went up after the election. Seems in spite of the record warm temperatures the oil market is worried about running out of winter supplies. Do they really think we are that stupid? Guess they had to do something when there were no hurricanes to disrupt refinery capacity.
They are going to milk every last cent of excess profit out of the American consumer and the odds are the newly elected Democrat majority will do nothing about it. At least Vice President Cheney has someone to share the blame with for high prices.
Now I’ve done a two year investigation into the oil price mess and discovered some provocative information which will be released exclusively in the Coltons Point Times in the immediate future. I expect you will be a little surprised and a lot disgusted when you hear what all the Washington investigations missed along the way.
Oil Guzzling Car Companies Seek Help from Uncle Sugar
The major US auto makers met with Bush but really sent a message to the new Democrat Congress that they must have a corporate bailout from the government. Seems we must reward them for a decade of mismanagement and executive bonuses. We would be better off letting them fade into oblivion and let the Japanese take over, which they are doing without our help.
Bailey’s Lighthouse Disappears
The million dollar lighthouse in front of the Bailey place vanished over the weekend leaving behind the biggest sandbox in Coltons Point. How in the world will the birds and fish avoid crashing into the piers now? Several unconfirmed explanations have surfaced for this mystery including media pressure, it was removed for remodeling, a big wave took it, or it was put to rest for the winter which is yet to arrive.
Skunk Invasion Underway
Those black and white furry critters are back in force in spite of the Pointers best efforts to discourage them. Multiple sightings are reported nightly. Now the Animal Control has lost control of the situation or maybe just got lost on the way from Leonardtown. Clearly the skunks have been to guerilla training camp because the traps are a joke. Hillbilly Joe thinks they are escaped genetically altered mutant skunks from the Army chemical and biological warfare labs.
World News Briefs
Tom Cruise and Katie Marry this Week
Now the only thing newsworthy about this financial extravaganza is figuring out how a combined Scientology and Catholic service can be held. The castle in Italy is a nice touch for the ceremony though the Vatican probably is a bit put off. The wedding was dragging on for so long it had to be scheduled in a Suri before the baby was old enough to be a flower girl. Other than that who cares?
Other World News
Iraq, Somali, and the Central African Republic (CAR) continue fighting, and France has agreed to help out in CAR, probably to protect the diamond mines.
French socialists may lose the presidency again as the Telegraph of the UK said, “Even by the standards of French politics – a world with an alarming tolerance for charlatans and blow-in-the-wind populists – the Socialists’ three hopefuls are a depressing bunch.” Strange how a Socialist country like France hasn’t had a Socialist president in 12 years. But then the Socialists voting must pay their party dues to vote leaving only about 200,000 eligible voters for president in the primary out of a population of 60 million. And we thought our election system was flawed.
Afghan Women Resort to Suicide
Afghan women, influenced by the example of women in Iran, have seen a startling increase in suicides by setting fire to themselves to avoid forced marriages and chronic abuse. Women and girls are often given away to settle conflicts in the country. Sometimes we forget how lucky we are to be Americans.
Other than that things remain at the same level of misery and frustration as normal in the rest of the world.
Bush lost the elections and fled to Russia today followed by 8 days in Asia.
A new poll found 57% of voters do not believe the Democrats have a “plan” to get out of Iraq but they voted for them anyway.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a Maryland native, backed Pennsylvania Congressman Jack Murtha over a Maryland Congressman and second in command Steny Hoyer for the powerful Majority Leader position. The vote is Thursday.
Finally, the Internet now has over 100 million websites and over 1 billion users. How in the world will they ever find their way to the Coltons Point Times?
Friday, November 10, 2006
Still there are some things we need to know that will help us know each other better.
Who is the oldest person in Coltons Point?
Who has lived in Coltons Point the longest?
Do you know any of the aliens living in the Point?
When was the last time you saw road or ditch maintenance in the Point?
Where does Inky go on those long solo walks?
Why does the Pilot Enterprise cost more than the Washington Post?
How much green & blue glass has Sweet Sue the Cheerleader collected from the river?
How far back in Colton’s history does Colorado Chris’s gas line stretch?
How many of the secretive Pointers are in the witness protection program?
Why cancel the Blessing of the Fleet because of rain when boats are made to go in water?
Are Stevie Van Zany and Broadway Linda Rose really the Captain and Tenille in hiding?
After his many trips to China is Professor Ray an authority on Chinese food?
Is his wife Sister Sheila Coltons Points equivalent to famed feminist Gloria Steinham?
Does she have her own radio show on GreenStone?
Are those occasional huge explosions up river Navy weapons testing or admirals fishing?
Was Harley Tom the builder of the fastest motorcycle in the nation, or world?
What happens to you when you suck in nitro fumes for years?
What happens to your face at 206 mph on a motorcycle?
How many miles a day does Jeff the Town Crier ride in his intelligence work?
Did Hanger Nick used to dance with the Chippendales? Does he still?
What is the real story behind Admiral Gibby and the Giant Groundhog caper?
Is it true Mother Hammett accepts every invitation she receives?
Does Quiet George plan on turning the Arrow Beer bar into river view condos?
Has anyone seen Wild Willy lately or should we proceed with the milk carton photo?
Did Bren the Greek start therapy after hearing the election results?
Did Duke Deere even know there was an election?
Are Joseph the Carpenter and The Rose converting their yard into a Bush Gardens?
How did Haughty Helen get Hillbilly Joe to fix three mirrors?
Please submit your answers and the most accurate or creative might win whatever can be bought with all our subscription revenue.
Wednesday, November 08, 2006
I also said they had to win six Senate seats to win. They have won five seats and may win six seats. If they get the last seat in Virginia they will also control the Senate, but they will not be the majority in the Senate. What? Truth is there are 49 Republicans and 48 Democrats right now, with Virginia to be determined. If the Democrats win it they will have 49 Senators. They need 51 to control the Senate.
There are two independents in the Senate, and one, Lieberman, said he would support the Democrats which makes sense since he was their national candidate a couple of years ago. His vote gives the Democrats 50 votes but that would not give them control since the Vice President breaks ties in the Senate. So who is the second independent who could give the Democrats the deciding votes in the Senate, an avowed socialist from Vermont. Can you really be too confident when a card-carrying socialist will determine if your agenda can succeed? What price will you pay for his support? We shall see.
Still to be determined is how many of the new House members are moderates and conservatives versus the traditional liberal views of many mainstream Democrats. Will the diverse and center to right shifting Demoratic party be able to mange the diversity? Whether the Democrats control one or both Houses they still will not have enough votes to override a Presidential veto which requires a two-thirds majority. Ho hum.
On the other hand, the House victory makes Nancy Pelosi House Speaker, a former Maryland native with a rich family history in state politics. History was made because she is the first woman to be Speaker of the House, second in line for the presidency behind the vice-president, and with Condi Rice there are now two women in the top four in line for the presidency.
I wish women would take control of the House, Senate and White House since men have had the last 230 years to fix things and look at the mess we have today. It’s about time someone who wears a dress runs the House, well I mean someone who is supposed to wear a dress since a few of those male politicians over the years had pretty strange behavior. There may be some truth to the Biblical story about Adam and Eve. God made man, then took a rib and made women. Some people think God didn’t need the rib but just took time to think it over, then made woman to fix all the things that were wrong with man.
There are 70 women in the House now, and 16 in the Senate, and two more possible in contested elections, the most in history but we need 218 in the House and 51 in the Senate to take control in this gender bender campaign. We have our work cut out for us to get there but a few more election performances by the men like this year and some corruption house cleaning and we could get there sooner than you think.
Other election news - the stock market went up, the rest of the world breathed a sigh of relief, there will be a spike in unemployment of Republican staff members, Homeland security might improve since Nancy said she will push for implementation of all 911 Commission recommendations, something the palace guard in the White House resisted, Rumsfeld is gone, and the Middle East just became a lot more unstable with the likely withdraw of USA troops.
Here in Maryland political pundits attribute O’Malley’s victory to better hair and across the river in Virginia, well, Marylanders are not surprised Virginians still can’t figure out who won their Senate race, look at the mess they made of the northern Virginia development that stops traffic cold when people cross the river from Maryland into Virginia.
Let’s hope things do change for the better.
Tuesday, November 07, 2006
TV networks and political parties spent hundreds of millions of dollars trying to influence your vote this year in one of the worst episodes of the attempted manipulation of the American mind in over 50 years. In 1948 on election day every newspaper and political party in America said Harry Truman was going to get clobbered, with headlines announcing the defeat of the scrappy American president. They were wrong.
This year the news media, which should no longer be called the news media but the APM, the American Propaganda Machine, which oftentimes seemed more like a division of the Democratic National Committee, bent over backwards to help discredit Bush. And the two political party machines, well if they aren’t shamed after this fiasco, they should be sent to the Ukraine where fisticuffs are an acceptable campaign tactic.
There will be winners and losers no doubt when the votes are finally tallied, and vote counting itself is an adventure in fiction some places. How in the world can we have the most advanced science and technology in the world and still not be able to count votes honestly in many places? They never had a problem before the dependence on technology.
Okay, what do the multi-million dollar political pundits say? They have made claims that the Democrats will win 15-45 Republican seats because of the success of the anti-Bush movement. In any normal political off-year election, meaning the year when the president is not running for office, the party in power (Bush) loses about 30 seats. So to be successful the Democrats must win 30 seats in the House and take control of the Senate. Fat chance and I’ll tell you why!
In America, in spite of their best efforts, the news media and the national political parties still have not figured out how to tell you how to vote and that is a very good thing. They still forget that Americans vote for people, not parties, for local candidates, not Bush, and the more a media broadcast tells them what they will do, or the more a political party tells them who to vote for, the more the American voter will resent it and do their own thing.
This election is not about Bush, he’s not even on the ballot. Had the Republicans been thinking right they would have made it a referendum on Bush and slapped the two Democratic party pin ups all over the television. If they had made it a Bush versus Kerry/Gore campaign the Republicans might have won hands down. But they missed a golden opportunity.
What about the media polls? Don’t they tell us who will win? And what about all the focus groups used by our television networks, those folks from little towns all over America? I was involved in a scientific, non-partisan evaluation of polling techniques 26 years ago that helped introduce the “perception analysis method” to focus groups along with new techniques in tracking and backtrack polling for major campaigns. Yes folks, in this day and age there is something called non-partisan where people who are Democrats, Republicans and Independents can actually work together.
We found that in focus groups a significant number of people told you what they thought you wanted to hear, not what they really believed. So we wired the focus groups to sensors and ignored what they told us, relying on their emotional response to what they saw and heard and found a significant change in the results. Their emotions were their first impulse while their answers were the calculated response. Emotions don’t lie, except they do lie below the surface of what the political parties and media were counting in polls.
We tested the technique over and over in multiple campaigns from Nebraska to New Jersey and we could predict the results 30 days before the election within 1-2% accuracy, results which often differed from the media polls by 5-15%. To this day the emotional response technique for perception analysis is not widely used by campaigns. What a shame.
In the course of 33 political campaigns I worked on from mayor to president, congress to senate, spanning the last five decades, there are some things that just never change. The published polls do not tell you the real story. No national election has been won or lost on any issue but the economy. Negative campaigns result in fewer people voting from the party running the ads, and tend to heighten the intensity of those offended by the ads. In other words, an anti-Bush ad could drive more Republicans to the polls.
Political parties still don’t understand the independent vote, they take for granted the traditional base, and they focus on the wrong issues. Independent voters are usually disenfranchised party voters and many people still are registered in a party but vote for the candidate, not the party machine. Parties seem to think the traditional base voters will do what they are told, and the Democrats are particularly insensitive to this. They think every minority voter in America from African American to Hispanic to Union member will do what they are told.
We destroyed that misconception when in 1985 Tom Kean (Republican from New Jersey) won the largest share of minority vote ever captured by a governor candidate since the Reconstruction days after the Civil War. Imagine that, a blue blood Republican winning the largest victory in history in a Democratic state.
Regarding issues, wars tend to be supported by the public whether they agree with it or not because their sons and daughters, husbands, relatives or fathers and mothers are the Americans over there fighting in the war and dying and people do not want to abandon them no matter how stupid the parties. International issues and foreign affairs do not swing elections. People vote for the pocketbook, jobs, wages, savings and stability.
Off-year elections are not about the president but what your local congressman or senator will do for you. People don’t expect their representative to agree with them all the time, that is not representative government and the issues can be very deceiving. Our congress can be very underhanded by attaching riders to bills that have nothing to do with the bill so they can blame their opponents of being for or against the wrong side of an issue. Both parties do this and the media buys into it but the voters are not often fooled.
In campaign 2006 the news media and the political parties will once again be the big losers. The American voter will once again tell them what they really think, not what the hacks want to hear. When people go in to vote they won’t vote Democrat or Republican, they will vote for the woman or man that will best represent them, the one who will best represent all the people not just some of them. And the really good politicians, well they can stand on their own two feet.
So how do we know who wins? Don’t listen to the media analysis. If the Democrats win 30 house seats and 6 senate seats they will win. If the Republicans maintain control of both the house and senate they will win. If the Democrats win the house and not the senate, neither side wins. Or maybe, just maybe, it means America wins.
# # #
Sunday, November 05, 2006
Okay, we have finally tracked down the blockbuster rumor of Coltons Point. Rumor has it that Burnim and Murray, the Hollywood Production Company of The Simple Life starring America’s
Richest Dizzy Blonde Paris Hilton and her skinny sidekick Nicole Richie is considering shooting a future episode at, yes, you heard this right, the Colony of Coltons Point.
Since most of you have never seen this strange reality show I’ll give you a thumb nail sketch. It is about a couple of rich kids going someplace and trying to fit in. It is as dumb as a cross-eyed crab running the hundred yard dash in the Olympics. Still, Paris does draw superstar media attention and maybe some of the good stuff will rub off.
If these two valley girls ever show up imagine what we could do with them. After Hillbilly Joe and Duke Deere take them for a tour of the Point on the John Deere they will show them how to fix a riding mower. Then Jeff the Town Crier will take them to the piers to fetch the crab traps since they will most certainly have to prepare a crab fest.
If they escape the vicious Coltons crabs alive it’s off to Quiet George’s Arrow Beer bar for food and drinks though they will be extremely disappointed at the selection. I doubt Paris has ever had a Bud or Bud Light and that’s all the Arrow Beer Bar sells.
Guess we could throw them a Bluegrass Hootenanny hosted by Mayor Bob and Lady Anna, featuring the Bluegrass Boys Band of Pointers, better known as three “B”s and a “P”. Most of our bluegrass boys are older than the hills but we can prop them up for one more gig as long as the Emergency Service truck is on standby.
King Bob of Marina fame wants to throw a parade so we can wheel out our only float of the museum, call in the three piece marching band, drive them around the block about six times, then ease into the billowing tents of the Bailey boys along the shore for yet another Lighthouse fundraising dinner. This time we will even get the portable toilets on wheels with the carpeted ladies lounge and heated seats. Don’t want those Hollywood celebrities spreading any rumors about the Pointers being backwards.
By the time we finish with those girls they will be fattened up and ready for a month at the spa not to mention the need for extended sessions with their shrinks. So how about that, an episode of The Simple Life in little old Coltons Point, the only town on the map in Maryland that isn’t even a town, or city, or village, or sanitary improvement district.
You think this will be good for Coltons Point then get out your pen and write to the producer of the show Joey Carson, CEO at Burnim and Murray Productions, 6007 Sepulveda Blvd, Van Nuys, CA 91411. Tell him you think Paris needs a jolt of the reality of our reality or it really isn’t a reality TV show at all.
A newspaper without Letters to the Editor is like a bath without water. It doesn’t take long to realize it’s pretty obvious that something rather important is missing. So I decided to share my emails with you today. Seems our readers have a diverse sense of interests.
Four of them offered a free credit report. I responded that they should pay me to tell them the truth about my credit. There were credit card offers from all the blue chip money machines. I even got offers for a card with a picture of my university, dog, cat or mother on it. I wrote back and said just skip the card and send me the money.
Comments poured in about my sexuality or lack thereof I guess. Viagra or the many similar products were offered from places stretching from Canada to Brooklyn though I wondered how they knew I was such an under-performer, and what made Canadian Viagra better than others.
If I ever need a date or a wife a widely diverse set of prospects were offered by the emails from single women all colors of the rainbow to about every type of mate one could imagine. I wrote back saying I had a very peculiar taste in mates and could they send me an Irish Leprechaun regardless of sex, or a gypsy fortune teller, or just any old mermaid. Haven’t heard back.
A bunch of nice folk offered me a lot of free stuff so I guess they knew how much you are paying me for subscriptions. I sent back a note telling them the Coltons Point Times was a lot more like a "prescription" than a "subscription", and more than likely prescribed by a psychiatrist than a medical doctor. When I read about all the free stuff I started thinking where I might find an old tobacco barn to keep all of it. But when I replied to them nothing seemed to be as free as the claims. Now either they are telling a lie or lying about what they tell, but either way it comes out about the same.
There were an avalanche of offers of money, loans, mortgages, or anything else whose primary purpose involved making sure I was a true American and borrowed my way into oblivion. By the time I got to the 38th email I began to suspect these really weren’t letters to the editor after all so I hit the delete button and they all vanished into cyber space.
I asked Hillbilly Joe what he thought of the strange emails I was receiving. He said I was victim of a SPAM SCAM. Now I am calmly waiting for the real Pointers to email and tell me what they think if it isn’t asking too much.
Friday, November 03, 2006
Though about a hundred construction trucks have been making their way down Beach Road to Nicks’ Place he is not building a Hanger Club South, nor a mausoleum to rival the pyramids, but just a little country cottage with a stunning view of DC.
And Nancy, who lives down by our postage stamp beach and recently got a pacemaker, does not stand in front of the microwave with the door open and turn it on for kicks.
Now Doris Hammett may very well be closing in on her goal of setting a Guinness World Record for finishing jigsaw puzzles but she is not the matriarch of the thousands of Hammetts in Southern Maryland. On the other hand, we are encouraging her to open an offensive driving school for seniors.
By the way, Hillbilly Joe wonders if you can you really believe an authority on world records (Guinness) when it was started by a 248 year old beer brewery in Dublin, Ireland? And aren’t they the ones who find such difficulty sorting fact from fiction laddie?
Stevie Van Zany, the guitar playing weekender on the south side did not remove much of his overgrown maze because his wife Linda got lost in it for days though she is entirely capable of doing such a thing. On the other hand, he grew up on the western shore of the Bay so in spite of being a weekender he still makes a killer crab ball.
And finally, Americans do celebrate the Mexican holiday Dia De Muertos, Day of the Dead, November 1-2, not so much because we understand the holiday but because tequila is the fastest growing drink in the USA and that is reason enough to party.
You got a rumor or rumination let us know.
Bren the Greek sounds like the name of some ancient Greek literary classic. Like our modern day Bren says, “nothing ancient about this Greek tragedy”, which Hillbilly Joe interprets as meaning life with Duke Deere, her lesser half, is just as hair-raising as anything Homer said Odysseus ever did.
Speaking of hair-raising, our Bren even has a salon, though not the kind with two “oo”s, but she’s still learning the piano so she can entertain. You ever need a cool coiffure, or maybe to delay the gray, check out the salon with one “o”. And if you ever need a conversation fix she’s the one. New England born she gives you twenty words per dozen.
The Saloon Proprietor
Now Quiet George is master of the saloon with two “oo”s and where the Greek would never suffer from being tongue-tied, seems like Quiet George hardly ever gets his tongue untied. Quiet George has the only commercial establishment allowed in our Colony of Coltons Point. It must be historical cause it hasn’t changed in decades, the building, décor and even stuff on the shelves is pretty much what’s always been there along with most of the patrons.
George’s bar might be called the Arrow Beer joint because that is the only sign around. There is also a general store called Potomac Gardens and Post Office in George’s place with the Gardens being somewhat self-service. George must figure if you can find anything in there you need you can take it. Outsiders sliding up to the bar better not need a shoulder to cry on or expect the bartender to tell them everything going on as one syllable George will be behind the bar. America had Calvin Coolidge, known for extraordinarily short answers, and we have Quiet George. Quiet, that is, unless he knows you.
TV news stopped being news long ago. The weathermen are members of a secret society dedicated to increasing the frustration and anxiety of fellow Americans with their space age equipment, precarious predictions of doom and gloom just over the horizon, and their idiotic forecasts. Every time I hear a scientific forecast I cheer for Mother Nature to show them up.
Maybe the weathermen should predict the election outcome? Their faulty forecasts would be right at home with the political polling. You do know polls are a way for the so-called experts to blame wrong information on someone else. When it comes to accuracy, don’t look for it on television. Come to think of it don’t look for education, entertainment, inspiration, religion or anything else on TV.
Can you believe that in the final analysis we, you and I, are responsible for all the garbage shoved down our throats every day and night on the tube. Oh yes, accept the blame because we the people, the enlightened voters of the USA, elect the people who control the airways and license the TV and radio stations to force feed us the very stuff we complain about.
And isn’t it strange that the most powerful force in America, television, the most powerful force around the world for that matter, is the result of the government licensing air to broadcast companies dedicated to polluting our minds. Selling air - what a gas.
Of course the broadcasters then turn around and re-sell the same air back to the politicians who sold them their license for air and in the process bring us the one million TV political commercials that were broadcast this fall at a cost of tens of millions of dollars not to mention the mental stability of the nation. Television addiction should be at the top of the list of dangerous addictions but you never hear about any rehab, support groups or interventions to stop this addiction.
So I guess there is a way to save the environment by saving energy, save the children by changing their mental diet, save our reputation in the world and save ourselves in the process, just turn off the TV. If we don’t the stupidification of America will continue unabated.
Wednesday, November 01, 2006
The mud being slung has gotten so thick that if people had a choice on the ballot to “throw the whole lot out” we wouldn’t need to worry about either the Republicans or Democrats running the country into the ground.
If the campaign continues at the horrid level of today the only immigration problem the new congress needs worry about is how to stop everyone from fleeing the country.
Here in Maryland the integrity of the vote counting is so shaky we might not know the final outcome until the 2008 Presidential election. Do Marylander votes count? Who knows?
Nielsen television rating for the recent World Series hit the lowest point ever, mostly because no one wanted to hear the avalanche of demeaning campaign ads between innings.
Incumbents beware – Jerry Springer got thrown off the Dance show, you may be next.
Hillbilly Joe says the biggest loser this election is the truth.
Dogman says the whole damn bunch of politicians are losers.
Duke says we are the disenfranchised Americans but Duke is from Maine, as in Stephen King Maine, and being disenfranchised there is a genetic given.
Will the pain never end?
Let’s just hope our Constitution once again is strong enough to survive the floundering political leadership of our nation. Thank you Founding Fathers.
Hillbilly Joe, well you can’t help but notice him. He might be in his green truck, blue truck, grey car or even a red truck, or you might just see him cruising on his big old John Deere diesel in formation with Duke Deere. Joey comes from a long and illustrious line of North Carolina Hill folk, most of whose stories cannot be allowed to appear in print.
Always willing to help out, he’s one of two Hillbilly brothers from the Point sent to infiltrate the state and find out what those suits are doing with our tax dollars. They still haven’t figured it out but they’ve only had about 40 years of state service between them and Hillbillies are not prone to jump to conclusions. Hillbilly Joe is the resident Socrates, Aristotle and Plato rolled into one package so if you ever want a philosophical opinion on about anything just ask. Of course being a Hillbilly and all his answers are rather succinct.
What do you think of the elections Hillbilly? “They’re an exercise in intellectual constipation!”
How about the weatherman and his reports? “A blank screen has more accurate information!”
Well what about the gorgeous star of Ghost Whispers? “Hubba-hubba-hubba!” ??????????
No one ever said you had to believe a philosopher.
If ever we were to approve our referendum to withdraw from Maryland and become a colony again King Bob would be the titular head of state because of his organizational mastery. There are River Men and there are the men who make them and King Bob is most certainly one of the latter. He has the oldest marina around and for about a thousand years provided the parts, repairs and beer vital to the survival of River Men.
When he decided he might slow down he took over the Clements Island Museum, or he became a living history exhibit in the Museum, we aren’t sure which at this point, but he does have his own parking place and that is a sure fire status symbol. The master manipulator of Coltons Point with his down home approach and humble demeanor King Bob is overseer of the historic Clements Island, the infamous location where the Catholics came and went some 370 years ago.
Well talk about institutions, DC has those dead people monuments and we have our Mayor Bob and Lady Anna, the ones with the welcome cannon in the front yard. They can tell you stories about just about every one and every thing in the Point and being located at the only real intersection along the shore, they are in the center of action and attention. If you ever need anything, especially from the ever-missing government, ask Mayor Bob and he will tell you why it won’t happen.
Bob has every tool known to mankind and a fleet of mowers. He needs that fleet to pull himself out when he high-centers another mower in his ditch. Anna has every movie ever made. She gets so many overnight deliveries of movies we suspect the UPS man has a house key. They both have a collection of country and bluegrass records, tapes and cds that would be the envy of many a radio station. Look for them in the garage when the songs are blasting.
Dogman Joe has been a fixture walking his dog the same path every morning since maybe the great depression. First there was Max, the king of all companions, and now there is Casey who is determined to show Joe just who is training whom. To say Joe is a cynic would be a gross understatement. I’m not sure there is anyone in the world capable of telling the truth as Joe sees it. His philosophy is pretty clear. “Don’t believe anything you read, see or hear and you will be okay.”
Joe has a soft spot for Fords, at least the ones built before the computers took over. He is almost a genuine River Man though he would never lay claim to the honor being humble as he is but he does have a big old fishing boat that’s landed many a fine catch. He went to Britain once, said it was the last time he’ll ever leave the Point. Said no one should have to pay for such a horrible experience. Cooks a wicked crab, oyster, or fish meal when the pool table is out of the way and yes, he is a card carrying member of the Coltons Point Mowers All Stars.
The Admiral, you know it’s the admiral the minute you set eyes on him. He must still think he’s at the bow of some big ship the way he sways up and down the street. (Actually it’s his knees.) Old Gibby is the first line of defense from the horrors of the swamp so he’s seen more than his fair share of dangerous varmints. When hurricanes hit the water nearly reaches his front porch but he’d never evacuate and miss a chance to look out over the seas.
He works hard at his garden to feed the rabbits and deer but has had some dangerous episodes when he went up against the odorous skunk family, and well, when he went face to face with the giant ground hog it was nearly the end of him. If the Admiral doesn’t respond to you it’s only because he left the hearing aids behind. He says the silence has more meaning than most conversation. He is careful, practicing defensive driving with his flagpole but then this is an old Navy guy who stood on deck and saw Tokyo harbor from a secret oil tanker while we were still at war and his ship was a target.
Joe the Carpenter
Joe the Carpenter, the builder of the church, chapel, temple, synagogue, ashram, shrine or whatever the heck that new building must be on Charles Hall, is another of the interesting characters of Coltons Point. The fact he is a Joe and enjoys being a carpenter might be about as close as he gets to the father of JC though rumor has it he spent a good deal of time in the Middle East and he did marry a Mary as in Rose Mary.
Joe and the Rose have a home, a chapel and an island with a pier that stretches almost to Virginia but they are a little disappointed they can’t go out for a decent dinner here at the Point. There is just no place to dine. So they had to get into a secret society of chefs (maybe the chapel is the new secret headquarters) and the 10-15 member couples are collectively able to make a decent meal between them, but only if it is prepared outside the Point.
Watch for Part Two it may include you!