Aug 12


“These people who are making a big deal out of gay marriage? I don’t give a f*** about who wants to get married to anybody else! Why not?! We’re making a big deal out of things we shouldn’t be making a deal out of. They go on and on with all this bulls*** about “sanctity” — don’t give me that sanctity crap! Just give everybody the chance to have the life they want.

Clint Eastwood
2011 interview with GQ

Aug 12

Well said…


Aug 12

Moon and Crows

Moon and Crows, originally uploaded by James Milstid, aka PapaJames.

Every evening at sunset, several flocks of hundreds of crows fly by my house on their way to their evening roost.

The five in this photo were in a murder of about 50 or so. I know where they’re headed. I want to go there in the next few evenings and catch photos of them.

250mm handheld… had to hurry!

Aug 12

New word for me: Descry

I added another word to my vocabulary this morning. I love discovering new words as I do my daily crossword puzzles.

I’m not sure if I’ll use this one very much, but one never knows!

descry [dih-skrahy]
verb (used with object), de·scried, de·scry·ing

  1. to see (something unclear or distant) by looking carefully; discern; espy: The lookout descried land.
  2. to discover; perceive; detect.

1250–1300; Middle English descrien < Old French de ( s ) crïer to proclaim, decry.

Aug 12

I just found out that I’m obsessed…

I enjoy photography. A lot. It’s caused me to look at the world differently. It’s caused me to truly see what I’m seeing. It gives me an outlet for the artist within; something that I didn’t have while raising and supporting a family.

For almost fifty years, I’ve waited for a time when I could just let my creativity freely fly. Raising a family and working at a career takes time and focus. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t regret a second of my life before retirement.

But now it’s my turn. My time. I cherish it.

So today, when I was told that taking pictures is all I think about, it hurt.

The implication was that I don’t do much of anything else productive. And he’s embarrassed when I see a photo-op in public and I pull out my camera to capture it.

Maybe I am obsessed with photography. So be it. I’ve learned that to really do something right, I need to be immersed in it.

My turn!

Aug 12

Vonderful Venn Charts…

Aug 12

Mitt’s 13% tax return piqued my interest…

So, Mitt Romney proudly announced today, after perusing his past tax records, that he’s never paid less than 13% for federal income taxes.

After perusing my own past five years of tax records, I’ve never paid less than 18% for federal income taxes.

Granted, our incomes are are drastically different (it would take him a mere day and a half to make my and Shelley’s yearly income), but it raises questions about the conservatives’ penchant to gift the very rich with huge tax cuts. Or not.

Our federal income taxes are primarily a progressive tax system. In a progressive tax system, as one’s income increases they pay more taxes. The percentage is adjusted based on income; as income increases, the rate or tax bracket also increases. Our federal tax system does just that, up to a point. The tax rate actually begins to decrease for the very wealthy. The decrease is generally created by the breaks and incentives allowed by our congress for the wealthy.

Even so, the wealthy person ends up paying more for government services than I do. Part of me says it’s not fair to the wealthy. I use Interstate 5 often to get form point A to point B. If a wealthy person uses the same stretch of freeway, should he pay more than me? I don’t really have a good answer for that.

I also understand the theory behind trickle-down economics, which I believe is where all this leads. If we take care of the wealthy, the corporations, the employment sources… they’ll pass the good fortune down to the working class. Correct? I’m sure that there are corporations (they are people, right?), that actually do that. But I also believe that those honest corporations are in the minority, or trickle-down economics would work.

Sales tax is a regressive tax system. In a regressive tax system, everyone pays the same rate on items purchased. Regressive tax is not based on income, rather it’s based on the cost of goods.

The math. So, I go to the hardware store and buy a new handsaw for $24.99. I pay the 9.2% sales tax of $2.30 for a total of $27.29. Mitt Romney sees my new saw and wants one too. Same price, same tax, and same total. $2.30 sales tax is not a huge amount, but it’s a much larger percentage of my hourly wage than it is his. Even if I’m making a good wage of $30.00 an hour, $2.30 is 7.6% of that. Mitt Romney makes $10,384 an hour (based on what he reported as taxable income in 2010). $2.30 is 0.022% of his hourly income.

Bottom line: I paid 7.600% of my hourly income for sales tax. Mitt Romney paid 0.022% of his hourly income for sales tax.

With a regressive tax, the lower wage earners must pay a higher percentage of their incomes to pay the taxes on purchased goods and services.

Where am I headed with all this information? I have some real honest questions about the “best” route for our economy. Is it presumptuous of me to expect the wealthy to be saddled with more responsibility to society? What is most fair for all? I believe in our country and cherish the fact that people can be successful in their business ventures, but I often wonder if everyone truly has a equal opportunity to succeed? What can we do about greedy corporate giants who appear to care less about the less fortunate?

The issues are far broader than our federal income tax system. As I delve into the arguments, more and more questions without distinct answers appear. I certainly don’t have the answers, but searching for them will make me a more informed voter.

BTW, Mitt’s reported 2010 taxable income was $21.6 million. Simple math tells me that he paid $2.81 million in taxes.

Aug 12


An open letter to the people who hate Obama more than they love America
by MinistryOfTruth ~Daily Kos

I meet you all the time. You hate Obama. You hate gay people. You hate black people, immigrants, Muslims, labor unions, women who want the right to make choices concerning their bodies, you hate em all. You hate being called racist. You hate being called a bigot. Maybe if you talked about creating jobs more than you talk about why you hate gay people we wouldn’t call you bigots. Maybe if you talked about black people without automatically assuming they are on food stamps while demanding their birth certificates we wouldn’t call you racist. You hate socialism and social justice. You hate regulations and taxes and spending and the Government. You hate.

You like war. You like torture. You like Jesus. I don’t know how in the hell any of that is compatible, but no one ever accused you haters of being over-committed to ideological consistency. You like people who look like you or at least hate most of the things that you hate. You hate everything else.

Now, I know you profess to love our country and the founding fathers (unless you are reminded that they believed in the separation of church and state), but I need to remind you that America is NOT what Fox News says it is. America is a melting pot, it always has been. We are a multi-cultural amalgamation of all kinds of people, and yet you still demonize everyone who is not a rich, white, heterosexual christian male or his submissive and obedient wife.

You hate liberals, moderates, hell, anyone who disagrees with Conservative dogma as espoused by Fox News and Rush Limbaugh. You hate em.

Well, here are the facts, Jack. If you hate the Government then you are unqualified to manage it. If you hate gay people more than you love America than you should take your own advice and get the hell out. There are several countries that are openly hostile to gay people, but they are full of brown people and you don’t like them much either from what I understand. It looks like you are screwed, but that’s not what I am here to tell you.

Continue reading →

Aug 12

New Word for me… “ana”

I learned a new word from my crossword puzzle today. Ana is a noun that describes a collection of anecdotes about a person or place.


n. pl. ana or an·as

A collection of various materials that reflect the character of a person or place: definitive ana of the early American West.

Often used as a suffix, as in Americana, Africana, and Victoriana.

Aug 12