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2009 July 19 — Why Now?
On-line Opinion Magazine…OK, it's a blog
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RIP Francis “Frank” McCourt 1930 – 2009

The ABC reports that Frank McCourt has died at 78 as a result of complications in treating melanoma.

He was born and died in New York City, but gained his fame for the autobiographical novel he wrote about growing up in Limerick, Ireland during the Depression, Angela’s Ashes

“It was, of course, a miserable childhood: the happy childhood is hardly worth your while. Worse than the ordinary miserable childhood is the miserable Irish childhood, and worse yet is the miserable Irish Catholic childhood.”

He entered writing late, after decades spent as a school teacher in New York, but his book was worth waiting for, and, amazingly, not the “total downer” that you would assume.

July 19, 2009   4 Comments

As Expected

The Local Puppy Trainer announces the sun rises in the East: Matt Gaetz to seek Sansom’s seat

Matt Gaetz has announced his candidacy for the District 4 seat in the Florida State House of Representatives.

Gaetz, 27, a resident of Fort Walton Beach, is the third Republican candidate to announce his interest in succeeding state Rep. Ray Sansom, whose term in the House would expire next year.

Kabe Woods and Bill Garvie, both also of Fort Walton Beach, have also pre-filed to run.

Gaetz said he believes Northwest Florida needs energetic leaders who will stand up for the core values of the Republican Party.

The Republican Party has “core values”? You mean like graft, corruption, and marital infidelity aren’t all they believe in, based on their performance lately? Do they expound on the virtue of hypocrisy, that seem to be their main “core value”. Instead of new taxes, they call them fees. Instead of “pork” or “turkeys”, they call them community development.

Well, I’m not a Republican, so I don’t get to vote for any of my local officials. It’s a warm feeling knowing that I’m not responsible for any of the criminal class our local elected officials have become.

July 19, 2009   2 Comments

What Are They Smoking?

This is an editorial in the Local Puppy Trainer –

Headline: Using fear to expand D.C. power

Lead Paragraph:

We’re glad to see Republicans gear up to fight the Obama administration’s unprecedented insertion of federal authority into areas of life that traditionally and appropriately have been reserved to the private sector. Indeed, our nation is heading down a dangerous road from which it might be difficult to return.

The body of the piece used to support that lead paragraph and headline is a recounting of the evil perpetrated by the Hedgemony under the Shrubbery.

It does not occur to them that the Republicans are the problem, when it comes to government intrusions into private space, because they are only concerned with the interests of corporations. They were silent about all of the abuses of the Bill of Rights, but vault onto the soapbox when the government might do something about the failures of large corporations to serve the needs of people and the country.

July 19, 2009   Comments Off on What Are They Smoking?

British Columbia Wildfires

FireThe drought conditions in British Columbia , the Canadian province North of Washington state, have made wildfires a matter of when, not if. This cluster of fires is Northeast of Seattle, about 50 miles North of the Washington/British Columbia border.

The CBC reports: B.C. wildfires force 17,000 to flee

The number of residents forced out of their homes because of a wildfire in the tinder-dry Okanagan region of B.C. continues to climb.

The latest reports indicate as many as 17,000 people have been evacuated from 6,500 homes in the region.

Since the fires started Saturday afternoon, flames have destroyed at least nine buildings, including three houses, and charred three square kilometres [740 acres] in West Kelowna.

Jeanne Rucker, an official with the Kamloops Fire Centre, told CBC News on Sunday that the fire was burning out of control.

There were more than 150 people battling the blaze, including 100 structural firefighters, as well as 17 pieces of heavy equipment, up to 10 helicopters and four water tankers.

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July 19, 2009   10 Comments

Stage 15 – Racing

Tour de France Alberto Contador took the stage, the yellow jersey, his team, Astana, took the yellow numbers, and the times spread out first to last from two hours to three.

Simon Spilak of Slovenia grabbed the red numbers as the Tour entered the Alps, while the Schleck family of Luxembourg celebrates Andy taking the white jersey and Frank moving into the top ten.

Carlos Sastre of Spain, last year’s winner, has moved up to 11th place, showing he isn’t out of it, despite a major time disadvantage from the team time trials early on.

1. Alberto Contador (E/Astana) 63:17:56 [yellow jersey]
2. Lance Armstrong (US/Astana) +01:37
3. Bradley Wiggins (GB/Garmin) +01:46
4. Andréas Klöden (D/Astana) +02:17
5. Andy Schleck (LUX/Saxo Bank) +02:26 [white jersey]
6. Rinaldo Nocentini (I/AG2R) +02:30
7. Vincenzo Nibali (I/Liquigas) +02:51
8. Tony Martin (D/Team Columbia) +03:07
9. Christophe Le Mevel (F/Francaise) +03:09
10. Frank Schleck (LUX/Saxo Bank) +03:25
11. Carlos Sastre (E/Cervelo) +03:52
12. Christian Vande Velde (US/Garmin) +03:59
13. George Hincapie (US/Team Columbia) +04:05
14. Cadel Evans (AUS/Silence) +04:27

Selected others below the fold.

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July 19, 2009   Comments Off on Stage 15 – Racing