Sunday, July 31, 2011

A WORTH WHILE PROJECT

The other day I received an email with this message:

The Mayor has asked the members of the Historic Preservation Commission to garner
support for the administration’s (and our) request for funding which will enable Plainfield
to apply for county money to help save Virginia Terrell's house and barn for future
generations. You may have seen the blue tarp flapping from the roof of the house as you
drive south on Terrill Road.

Now designated the Lampkin House, the building is one of the oldest in the State, and
badly in need of care. In 2009, the house was named “One of New Jersey’s 10 Most
Endangered” historic structures

This is what the grant application says about the project:

“The overall preservation objective of this project is to remove endangerment to the historic Lampkin House property through acquisition and stabilization. The long term objective is full restoration of the house and barn as a historic site, as well as site interpretation and site improvements (parking, trails, and landscaping) for public use and enjoyment. 


Recognizing the historical and architectural significance of the Lampkin House, the City of Plainfield proposes to acquire the property, prepare a Preservation Plan for its future use and treatment, and stabilize the house and barn to protect them from further deterioration until restoration can proceed.

“This project provides a unique opportunity to preserve one of Union County’s very early surviving houses for the use and benefit of all. The acquisition of the .43 acre property (see property maps included with application) offers an important opportunity to link the historic site with adjoining municipal and county open space (the 29.73 acre “retention basin property” owned by the City of Plainfield) and the Peterson Farm (a 5.71 acre farm preserved by Union County).

The City envisions a multiple use destination that will offer passive recreational opportunities (such as nature trails and outdoor interpretive programs) alongside the preserved historic site, thus expanding the potential uses and visitation of the preserved property in a densely populated area.”


I consider this  to be a most worthy project and hope that the Council will add its support. We Americans tend to have no regard for artifacts that represent our heritage and tend to destroy what is old instead of preserving. 

This would be a first step in preserving a historical building with as soon as possible obtaining funds for a complete restoration. Undoubtedly there will be in the future plans for some relocation of the building since with wi8dening of Terril Road one corner of the house is almost upon the street.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

DID YOU KNOW?

Often I receive a comment such as Blackdog’s to Friday’s blog  “Filler” blog that contains vital nuggets of exotic but not earthshaking  unknown to me information. Some times when  I surf the web I too come across pearls similar to the two in yesterday’s news. I have excerpted portions of some of interest I bet the next two “clips” are unknown to 99.99% of the population:

I will bet these  three “clips” contain information unknown to 99.99% of the population:

THE FLIGHT OF THE DRAGON
With the retirement of the Space Shuttles we have not abandoned the program but shifted the responsibility to the private world. Did you know that " Space Exploration Technologies, a privately owned firm developing a space taxi with U.S.-government backing, plans to launch its second test capsule on November 30 and send it all the way to the International Space Station, a company manager said on Thursday.

The next flight of the Dragon we're going to go all the way and berth it to the space station, drop cargo off and bring stuff back," Reisman, a former Astronaut and now a SpaceX VP, said.
That would position SpaceX to begin work on its 12-flight, $1.6 billion station cargo delivery mission.
SpaceX also is among four companies holding a combined $269 million in NASA contracts to develop space taxis that can fly astronauts to the space station, a job now handled by Russia at a cost of more than $50 million per person.

NASA's other partners are Boeing Co, privately owned Sierra Nevada Corp., and Blue Origin, a start-up owned by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos."

OUR ORBIT SHARER
As a result of the program to date  there have been some unusual findings that have received  scant attention. Among them by using an outer space telescope which is not the Hubble,  "Astronomers have detected an asteroid not far from Earth, moving in the same orbit around the Sun.

The 200-300m-wide rock sits in front of our planet at a gravitational "sweet spot", and poses no danger.
Its position in the sky makes it a so-called Trojan asteroid - a type previously detected only at Jupiter, Neptune and Mars.

Trojan asteroids orbit in the same plane as a planet, but don't collide with it. This is because they occur in "dead zones" where gravitational forces allow the asteroid to orbit at precisely the same speed as the planet.

It took an orbiting telescope sensitive to infrared light to pick up 2010 TK7. Wise, the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer launched in 2009, examined more than 500 Near-Earth Objects (NEOs), 123 of which were new to science.

IS GLOBAL WARMING A HOAX?
Has a central tenant of global warming just collapsed?

Climate change forecasts have for years predicted that carbon dioxide would trap heat on Earth, and increases in the gas would lead to a planet wide rise in temperatures, with devastating consequences for the environment.
But long-term data from NASA satellites seems to contradict the predictions dramatically, according to a new study.

“There is a huge discrepancy between the data and the forecasts that is especially big over the oceans,” said Dr. Roy Spencer, a research scientist at the University of Alabama in Huntsville and U.S. science team leader for the Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer -- basically a big thermometer flying on NASA’s Aqua satellite.

“The satellite observations suggest there is much more energy lost to space during and after warming than the climate models show,” he said. The planet isn't heating up, in other words.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/scitech/2011/07/29/data-cooling-on-global-warming/#ixzz1TWBGGF7x

   


Friday, July 29, 2011

AMERICA'S DEBT CIRCUS

August 5 is rapidly approaching and our esteemed national legislators are playing for brownie points while the rest of us can go to hades.

This morning the President held a press conference and part of his remarks  were:
 “There are a lot of crises in the world that we can't always predict or avoid -- hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes, terrorist attacks. This isn't one of those crises. The power to solve this is in our hands. And on a day when we've been reminded how fragile the economy already is, this is one burden we can lift ourselves. We can end it with a simple vote -- a vote that Democrats and Republicans have been taking for decades, a vote that the leaders in Congress have taken for decades.

It's not a vote that allows Congress to spend more money. Raising the debt ceiling simply gives our country the ability to pay the bills that Congress has already racked up. I want to emphasize that. The debt ceiling does not determine how much more money we can spend, it simply authorizes us to pay the bills we already have racked up. It gives the United States of America the ability to keep its word.” (The bold face is mine).

One of the causes of this present "recession" is that too many have maxed out their credit cards and also burdened themselves with mortgages they could not afford. Yet, Congress has no trouble spending money it does not have.

What  will be the price?  The debt ceiling will be raised  again and again. Only governments believe that they can spend money without having the resources to pay. Us poor human beings have to be accountable and  can lose everything (bankruptcy) if we followed such a practice.  But Governments can devalue their currency, and that creates inflation., which makes your assets and savings worthless.

While it is true that the President can temporarily raise the debt limit, it will need Congressional action to make it permanent.

History does not teach politicians any lessons because they either ignore it or don’t (can’t) read. The lesson of post WWI Germany should be recent enough to be a warning.  In recent months our politicians should have learned a lesson from Greece, Portugal, Spain and Ireland, countries that forgot that someone has to ultimately pay.

The difference is that there is no one big enough to bail us out. The impact on the world will be catastrophic.
Since you and I cannot  until election  time have an impact on Washington,

TIME FILLER

Usually I am up and going around 7am bur last night I had an extra- ordinary case of insomnia and took a rare "sleeping pill". too late. The result was that my alarm which is set for 9am so that I am awake for my kid's check up calls missed by 1 minute from disturbing me. 

I did intend to post something or other a rather rambling set of unrelated subjects this am. I had written a partial draft last night so that I will send it on late today. However, as a time filler I hope you enjoy the complaint that can from one of my email "joke" forwarders. It is true.

THE GREEN THING

In the line at the store, the cashier told an older woman that she should bring her own grocery bags because plastic bags weren't good for the environment.   

The woman apologized to her and explained, "We didn't have the green thing back in my day."   The clerk responded, "That's our problem today.  Your generation did not care enough to save our environment."    She was right -- our generation didn't have the green thing in its day.    

Back then, we returned milk bottles, soda bottles and beer bottles to the store. The store sent them back to the plant to be washed and sterilized and refilled, so it could use the same bottles over and over.  So they really were recycled.   But we didn't have the green thing back in our day.    

We walked up stairs, because we didn't have an escalator in every store and office building. We walked to the grocery store and didn't climb into a 300-horsepower machine every time we had to go two blocks.   But she was right. We didn't have the green thing in our day.    

Back then, we washed the baby's diapers because we didn't have the throw-away kind.  We dried clothes on a line, not in an energy gobbling machine burning up 220 volts -- wind and solar power really did dry the clothes.  Kids got hand-me-down clothes from their brothers or sisters, not always brand-new clothing. But that old lady is right; we didn't have the green thing back in our day.    

Back then, we had one TV, or radio, in the house -- not a TV in every room. And the TV had a small screen the size of a handkerchief (remember them?), not a screen the size of the state of Montana.   In the kitchen, we blended and stirred by hand because we didn't have electric machines to do everything for us.   When we packaged a fragile item to send in the mail, we used a wadded up old newspaper to cushion it, not Styrofoam or plastic bubble wrap.    

Back then, we didn't fire up an engine and burn gasoline just to cut the lawn. We used a push mower that ran on human power.  We exercised by working so we didn't need to go to a health club to run on treadmills that operate on electricity.   But she's right; we didn't have the green thing back then.   

We drank from a fountain when we were thirsty instead of using a cup or a plastic bottle every time we had a drink of water.   We refilled writing pens with ink instead of buying a new pen, and we replaced the razor blades in a razor instead of throwing away the whole razor just because the blade got dull.   But we didn't have the green thing back then.    

Back then, people took the streetcar or a bus and kids rode their bikes to school or walked instead of turning their moms into a 24-hour taxi service.   We had one electrical outlet in a room, not an entire bank of sockets to power a dozen appliances.  And we didn't need a computerized gadget to receive a signal beamed from satellites 2,000 miles out in space in order to find the nearest pizza joint.   

 But isn't it sad the current generation laments how wasteful we old folks were just because we didn't have the green thing back then?    

Please forward this on to another selfish old person who needs a lesson in conservation from a smartass young person

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

WHAT A DAY

Wednesday, July 27, 2011 should be memorialized as one of the most ideal perfect weather days on record.

That said it began when I opened my Courier News in a bitter sweet mode. Sweet because there were three stories by Mark Spivey  in this addition, plus his weekly Beer Column. He had been missing from print for several days and I was wondering if he had become a victim of the Gannet retrenchment.

Bitter due to the nature of the three articles. Yes the first Front Page story about the Photo exhibit at the Library is a positive one if were not for the fact that the exhibit opened about TWO weeks ago. One should take in these outstanding examples of photographic art. Intended or not, the editors chose to use Jackie Snoop's graphic down town Plainfield scene as its illustration.

The second article on page 2 reported a firing of shots aimed(?) at the Hanah Atkins Park Pool. The shooter was observed across the street and a 911 call resulted in  a prompt police response. Although there was a police officer in the vicinity who did see the shooter, he was unable to apprehend him.

What the paper does not report was the degree of the police response. Since the perp was observed running west on the RR tracks and could have disappeared on the north side. A single officer on the south side would have difficulty following him. If the ShotSpotter was in place and operational I fail to  believe that the results would have been any better.

The third and featured Front Page story was about the proposed closing of three of the most convenient satellite Post Offices in Zip Cod 20706X (Plainfield/North Plainfield).  Once again this population will become the victims of  Government Bean Counters. All three branches fill a community need that the main office can not.

There is not adequate parking near the downtown office. The Postal service may be loosing money because people are emailing rather than writing letters. That may be a connivance but is a less permanent record. Moreover, I do not get someone else's email while at least once  a month I find someone else's mail i n my box.

The closing of these offices will certainly persuade those that still use the postal service for packages to divert to the large carriers resulting in decrease income to a beleaguered agency. Like the elimination of Plainfield as a bulk mail office this latest action-and it will take place despite the formality of a public hearing.- is another nail in a community coffin.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

THOSE WERE THE DAYS

Helen and I had no desire for the “Country Club” social life.  However,in our mid 30s  we began to play golf. We had taken a few lessons with a group at  the JCC, and had a few more from a driving range pro.
There were several public courses available. In the summer, we would often after dinner  and before  dark play nine holes on the nearby “West Nine”. This was and still is a very short wide open 9 hole course owned by the “restricted” private Plainfield Country Club. It had been part of the club’s original eighteen, but was not up to standards. Also, these holes were on the other side of busy Raritan Road.
Although occasionally used by club members when the main course was closed, it was open for the use of the proletariat. The green’s fee was higher than the county courses. 
In those days      There were only two shallow sand traps and it was so wide open that only unplayable ball was one out of bounds. Sometime in the 50s or early 60s the configuration of the course was changed so that the 1st fairway was parallel on its left to Woodland Ave. 
For years cars were often an accidental target. In the 90s a high screen was erected along the road for a short distance past the 1st tee.  Par could not have been more than 31 for the 9 holes. A professional could shoot 18 holes in the low 60s without difficulty.
 I also would play at Ash Brook. This very long county course had been built on swamp land, thus some of the fairways were always spongy. There was one par 5 hole, the 7th, that had a long fairway from the tee to a sharp dog leg to the right, followed by a short uphill shot to the green. It was possible for long ball hitters to drive over some trees to land just below the green. Unfortunately, for me, I had a love affair with the pond that was at the angle of the dogleg. I was too stubborn to stop trying.
 I would play there, almost weekly, with two of the black physicians on the hospital staff,Hubert Humphrey, and Julius Langston. Both were dedicated golfers with low 80 handicaps.
One would hook every tee shot; the other would slice. Even from the rough or the woods they were always on the green in regulation, and were good putters. I on the other hand never knew where my ball was going. I would be lucky to break 100. But we truly enjoyed each other’s company.
I was also invited  by  colleagues with private club affiliations to play on all the area courses including the PCC, in addition to Echo Lake in Westfield, Twin Brooks and Shackamaxon. Shack had a famous par 4 postage stamp  island green. Shack and PCC were sites of PGA tournaments.
In the twenties, the Plainfield Country Club would not accept Jewish members. In fact it remained restricted even into the eighties. This prompted a mostly Jewish group in the 20s to organize the Prescott Hills Country Club. It was situated farm land on the Scotch Plains side of Cushing Rd.  My parents were members and used to golf and do the ‘Country Club thing” there..     
After the “crash of 1929 it had gone through bankruptcy and been acquired by private owners. By the end of WWII it was a poorly maintained long 9 hole golf course. The owners unsuccessfully attempted to  reconstitute it as ‘Netherwood” a private club but soon opened it to the public.
We would play there until it was sold for a large sub-development. The greens were in such bad shape that ‘winter rules” applied for puts.  Anything within 2 or 3 feet was a “gimmie”.
Another 18 hole privately owned public course, Oak Tree, was In nearby Edison. It had several interesting holes including a par four that had a short 50 yard drive through a “shoot” in the trees to a fairway that was a sharp dogleg to the right. I could not drive over the trees, as any good golfer should be able to do. I did however make a habit of hitting the trees lining the “shoot”. By the 80s, it had become a county course and several years ago it was closed.
         In the summer when at the lake, Helen and I would go to Schroon Lake Village where there was a 9 hole public course. It was unique. There was a long uphill par 4 first hole bordered on the right by a dirt road that led away from the lake and up the mountain. To the left of that green was the tee for the par 3 second hole, that could not have been more than 100 yards long. However, there was no fairway, just a 9 iron or pitching wedge drive over a “canyon” to a postage stamp green. Needless to say, in our hands almost all tee shots landed in an impossible resting place at the bottom or else were way over the green into impossible rough.
          The 3rd was a par 4 from the elevate tee, which offered a beautiful view of the lake. The drive was down to a precipitously lower slopping down hill fairway. Next there was a series of six par 4s one next to the other back and forth over the crest of a hill. It was a blind drive on these 6 holes. This part of the course was wide open the direction altering for each hole.
            Bob and Jean Reis and ourselves were vacationing at Castle Harbor and were playing on the Hotel’s golf course. My hook drive landed on a Mid-Ocean Fairway which was parallel to the hole I was playing. I took two shots towards the Mid- Ocean tee in order to reach the Castle Harbor green.
          One summer we drove to Prince Edward Island with Jean and Bob. Helen and I had been to the Island on our 1949 trip and had fallen in love with the beach. We were aware of the adjacent beautiful provincial golf course.
          The front nine was inland and hilly with elevated greens and deep traps. In front of one green there was a trap so deep that to get out it required a shot backwards to the fairway. I believe that there is a similar hole at Forsgate.
        Being in the deep rough or woods on the front nine was not too bad, since when looking for lost balls the girls would pick and eat strawberries. This course had a long par 5 with a postage stamp green on the side of a hill.
       In front of the green, there was a deep 30ft wide valley that had to be crossed.  Behind and slightly higher than the green was the original “Anne of Greengables” house. This also served as the club house.
          The back nine was a true seaside links. The nine holes ran counter clockwise around a peninsula jutting into the St Lawrence Bay. We often played with a Canadian whose left arm had been amputated. He was great company and a better golfer.
          On that trip, we played other courses included one at Moncton. This course had a hole which was a dead ringer for the “tree hole” at Oak Ridge. It required a drive through a narrow fairway surrounded by woods. Same results, twice my tee shot hit a tree landing at least twenty feet behind us.
          We also spent two days at a Bed and Bath near the Algonquin Hotel in St. Andrews New Brunswick. We would dine at the hotel, where the service was as fitting and perfect for a top Canadian Pacific Hotel. The hotel had two golf courses, one a tournament caliber 18 hole course, the other was supposedly a par three course with very narrow but long fairways.
          Being a dangerous golfer, it was probably best when I quit playing. The impetus for that move occurred when I took a mighty swing at a ball on a fairway in an attempt to reach the green in two. Unfortunately, the divot traveled farther than my ball. Also, I could not straighten up, and since I had a chronic low back disc problem, it was better to never play again than risk permanent injury.
          We both had enjoyed our golf and never lost our temper at a bad shot. In my approach to the game, after I made a good shot I would wonder what I had done right. I never could put or figure how the ball was going to go. Whenever some one would ask me what I shot, I would often say I broke 100 or 90 etc, adding “but I quit after the second hole”. Helen was an excellent putter. She also accomplished something I never did.
          One day, while I was working, she had gone alone to the West Nine. Upon her return she informed me that she had gotten a birdie! Apparently she played with two men one a priest and on one of her drives her ball had hit a bird flying across the course.
          Helen did continue to play the West Nine but since most of her acquaintances belonged to one of two Country Clubs she soon lost interest.

NOTHING

Going to spend the day-well part of it- cleaning off my desk and adjacent floor to rid myself of unneeded paper collection and to organize so that I can not find anything. Only if there is something of unusual interest; local or world wise will I post today. Enjoy the respite from the heat wave.

Monday, July 25, 2011

HATE AND MASS MURDER




Lost in the horror of the Norwegian massacres is the relevancy with terrorist and hate movements in the United States. According to the Southern Poverty Law Center there has been in the last decade a major increase in groups while not “terrorist” in concept preach hatred to a degree that would lead to violence against targeted ethnic and religious individuals or groups.

Significantly, New Jersey with 47 identifiable groups has one of the largest concentrations in the States; more than in New York. Only three States; California with 68, Texas with 59, and Florida with 49 have more identifiable groups. For the groups identified in Ne w Jersey click ( here  )

This trend is even greater in Europe especially in some countries where there has been a surge in immigration or an influx of foreign workers.

Anders Behring Breivik the 32-year-old Norwegian is described in the NY Times;” as a right-wing fundamentalist Christian, while acquaintances described him as a gun-loving Norwegian obsessed with what he saw as the threats of multiculturalism and Muslim immigration.”  Who wrote an  “1,500-page manifesto, posted on the Web hours before the attacks, Mr. Breivik recorded a day-by-day diary of months of planning for the attacks, and claimed to be part of a small group that intended to “seize political and military control of Western European countries and implement a cultural conservative political agenda.”

The Times article further states: ”The manifesto, entitled “2083: A European Declaration of Independence,” equates liberalism and multiculturalism with “cultural Marxism,” which the document says is destroying European Christian civilization.

The document also describes a secret meeting in London in April 2002 to reconstitute the Knights Templar, a Crusader military order. It says the meeting was attended by nine representatives of eight European countries, evidently including Mr. Breivik, with an additional three members unable to attend, including a “European-American.”

Breivik  had been a member of the right-wing Progress Party, which began as an antitax protest and has been stridently anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim, but left it when it began to become more centralistic.

We have been so focused on the Islamic terrorism that just as in Europe we have ignored those citizens that would abrogate the liberties inherent in our Constitution. We have forgotten Oklahoma City.  We have turned away from the concept that America is the great melting pot and have encouraged “multiculturism” bragging about the diversity of our populations not the unity we should have and promote as  the way of Life.
That does not mean that we should discourage various ethnic groups from remembering and celebrating their traditions. What we must avoid is the  encouragement of  “tribal  islands”  of religious and ethnic  sects. We must turn away from multiculturism and embrace a polycultural society.

To do so, we must insist that all be encouraged to adopt  “English” or its local dialect as the prime means of verbal and written communication. That will be an important stept for it is a fact that we tend to fear and/or resent those who are talking in a  language that is not understood.   

However, there  has to be native tongue  accommodations for the  new immigrant, especially the elderly ones as well as the youth in their initial school years.  Bilingualism should be minimized and the immigrants be given access to free English Classes.  This should be applicable to all not just “Hispanics”.

 If we learn to stop flaunting differences we shall reduce hate as a fundamental motivator.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

HEAT TIRADE


It may be the record heat wave, or all the craziness in this world.

How else can we account for our esteemed statesmen in Washington DC being willing to commit economic murder in order to make a point of how unrealistic the other party is? The Democrats will not yield on cutting expenditures, the Republicans especially the Tea Party wing cannot consider increasing the upper income level and business taxes. Oh they will gladly raise the debt ceiling for after all they will not have to pay the Devil his due.

How else can we explain why an extreme rightist and devout Christian took it upon himself to blow up a government building and then massacre about a 100 innocent youths who were enjoying a camp run by the ruling labor (leftist, socialistic) party? Oh yes he was making a point that foreign labor, Muslims, and other non believers had no place in Norway and he was going to make sure.  

But, all this pales in importance. I have to make a critical decision; should I renew my Courier subscription for another 6 months?

I have been a subscriber to the Plainfield Courier News and its subsequent metamorphoses through three address changes since 1946. That is 65 years. It has become just like our pets one of the family.

As a Plainfield youngster I can remember the school trips to the building on Park Ave to see the BIG Presses and the Linotype editors.

I have endured the physical and news abandonment of Plainfield for the more prosperous Somerset and Hunterdon Counties and the mirage of greater circulation and advertisement revenues. I have considering cancelling my subscription as it saved money through stages of reducing the page widths and the font size. I seriously thought of stopping the paper through its fortunately short lived disastrous Yellow Journalism rag period.

I felt justified and exalted when it went into its recent revival as a true local news media and assigned Mark Spivey to the Plainfield beat. But alas that was apparently an agonal gasp since it has once again reverted into a poor imitation of a Murdoch rag where advertisements often have the appearance of news stories. Now-a-days the rare local story is one of sensationalism; drug raids and murders’

There may be an occasional little blip of local interest, but even the obituary page has little personal interest since most of my peers have answered the call. The few remaining high spots are Spivey’s once a week Beer Column; one comic strip the Ledger doesn’t carry (For Better or Worse) and the daily Bridge Column. Both of the latter two have shrunk in physical size so that I need a magnifying glass to read.

In fact the only remaining redeeming factor is the cost of a six month subscription. The Ledger is 160% of the Courier and the Times price is about 350%. A bargain is only a bargain if it has usable value. Does this era’s Courier qualify?   I would appreciate your opinion.

Why this tirade? The same newspaper delivery service supplies both the New York Times and the Courier. Yet on Sunday at least once every two months there is no Courier, only the Times in my driveway. Obviously the Times contract is too important not to lose but what matters if the Courier is not delivered?

Incidentally, The Courier provided a link to the electronic edition for which I am gratefully. Unfortunately as I keyed on stories I frequently got this gibberish” John Romeo ake a 911 call a he CoOn of Moi CommOnicaion Diiion in Paian A olice eice ae conolidaed, moe mOnicialiie ae joining foce Tih he coOn o edOce olice commOnicaion co”

I suppose that if I were a cryptographer I could read it.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

HOT UNDER THE COLLAR

Where does one start.?  In Plainfield, nationally, other Oslo Norway?. Tough choices for consideration in this prolonged record-setting heatwave .

Of the two "man-made disasters" perhaps Oslo Norway's terrorist attack which has killed over 87 individuals most of them in the massacre of youths frolicking in a restricted escape proof area. Significant factor here is that any  specific idiotic terrorists action is not limited to Islamic extremist but is also a weapon of the extreme right bigoted element.

The lesson here is that in truth no one is always safe no matter where the circumstances or the venue is. We have to be as vigilant against the extreme right hate groups as we are against the leftists and religious terrorists.

At this point it seems just as  in the Oklahoma City attacks and the VPI massacres,  the individual responsible was acting on his own or only representing a very small group of malcontents. It is a fact that you never can completely prevent re-occurrences of these episodes without being continuously diligent and not condoning actions antisocial of any self-serving interests

I am tempted to include the irresponsible political posturing of the Republicans and the Democrats in Congress to be the equal to the actions of the Oslo murder.  His actions wee physical whereas the hot air and lack of any concept of public responsibility emanating from Washington's is truly verbal flouting.  In actuality it is both parties plus the President  who are trying to score brownie points with supporter groups at the expense of the nation and the individual citizen. They will kill the nation's economic welfare to score their philosophy.

Irresponsibility starts with the premise that we can solve the problem by raising the debt limit. Only a government seem to be able to consider that they have the right to spend money they don't have and leave the accountability to fall upon future generations. We have not learned from the recent collapse of Portuguese and Greek economies that government can not take care of all details in every one's life.

. That means that the extreme right and Tea Partiers of the  Republican Party must yield on the no tax raise  stance. The upper 10% can pay a much greater percentage of their income then lower 90%.  Any other type of money raising impacts on those who can least afford to pay.

The Democrats must cut back on the extension of the entitlement programs plus better fiscal controls. Pork barreling  should not be permissible and when attached to any Bill subject to line item veto. Social Security and Medicare should not be held hostage to either parties as part of  it's demands.

If Congress and the President do not have  come up with a solution within the next 10 days and  really default in the government's obligations, that would  be an act that economically is the political equivalent to the Oslo murders

Friday, July 22, 2011

HEAT

105 AT 11:30 On my porch in partial shade. Too hot to be agitated  by the blatant gall of the PMUA Commissioners in a settlement for Watson and Ervin. They broke their contract by resigning, Unless there was a provision for a parachute if they left, the PMUA and we taxpayers owe nothing.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

RAMBLINGS

Dr.E=MC2 I can not get into your blog from Clips. The address is not recognized. You have a message which may be controversial  to some but it is thoughtful and we do not need a community of " Yesers".

One of the sad results of elections is that defeated candidates seem to disappear from the local scene. All had  constructive thoughts to share but where are they now. A defeated candidate or office holder who after the election "washes his hands" of community affairs deserved his/her loss. Consider, what was their interests; that which they could try to do to make the community better, or their ego?

Granted, that not everyone  has as much free time as I. However periodic blog comments or presence  at meetings  by those who were active and can still give sage analysis of problems is sorely missed. Even  people that strongly disagree with you do "listen" and take into account.

We bloggers receive  two distinct but overlapping types of comments. They can be divided into those that agree and those that are strongly negative to the posting. We do have the option of posting the comments  or not. I fault those bloggers who only post the positive and  ignore the negative. As a great president once said:"If you can't stand the heat get out of the kitchen".

There is another division of comments; those that are dogmatic and repetitive and those that are thoughtful and  truly subject for debate. Unfortunately some of the later comments come in days after the blog has been posted and readers miss them. When the "debate" becomes  too personal the blogger does not have to post.

I have been impressed by a few of the comments  to various postings the past 3 or 4 days and recommend reading them and if you have  any further comment to be current reply to  today's  blog.

During this heat wave keep your cool both physically and mentally.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

REFLECTIONS ON A HOT DAY


This is a fourth day of over 90° temperature officially a heat wave. . Today may miss the 90° mark but we are due for near 100° temperatures the rest of the week.  

When  I sit in my air-conditioned  house (and pray that the system doesn’t fail as it has done once or twice over the past 30 years), or drive in my air-conditioned car; I wonder how I survived growing up. In  ancient days when I was a youngster  there was no such thing as air-conditioned.  Indeed the first building in Plainfield was the Liberty theater which had a system called refrigeration. That made it an ideal place to spend a hot afternoon and gave it an edge temporarily over the 3 Reid  Theaters.

Perhaps there  was a natural  acclimation to conditions. Of course there were heat related deaths especially among the older and younger population.  But I cannot remember it being a problem, partly because I spent my summers during the thirties up in the North country. However, my father remained in Plainfield except for the months of August. My mother was born in Plainfield and the lived here all her life.

In the 50s central air-conditioning was a rarity.  I had one window unit to cool my office on Grant Avenue and 4th Street.. Cars were cooled(?)  by placing an evaporator unit on the car door’s window with a small opening of the window. IN the home  the electric fan and sometimes evaporators when it was not humid or passing air over  chunks of ice  were the sole means of keeping cool and comfortable.

WE take so much for granted nowadays that we fail to realize that the 20th Century marked the greatest advance in human civilization. This was not only in material comforts, but in health care, in society itself, in communications and awareness of the world as a totality not something foreign.

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