Thursday, August 29, 2013

Senator Ted Cruz on Syria

HOUSTON, TX — U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) released the following statement regarding Syria:
Today, the legislative bodies of two of our closest allies are engaged in emergency meetings on the prospect of military engagement in Syria. In Great Britain, Prime Minister David Cameron has called the House of Commons home from vacation to deliberate over the use of force in Syria. In Israel, the Knesset’s Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee is reviewing potential responses should Israel be attacked in the fallout over action in Syria.
In Washington, DC, crickets are chirping.
It may be that there is a compelling case to be made that intervention in Syria is necessary to defend U.S. interests. But to date no such case has been made by President Obama, leaving those of us in Congress with some serious questions.
The President has in the past insisted that Assad must go, but this week his press secretary insisted that regime change is not part of any planned action in Syria. Given this lack of strategic consistency, Congress has every right to ask what the basic purpose of this action would be? On Monday, Secretary of State John Kerry expressed certainty that the Assad regime was responsible for the attack, but today we are learning there are outstanding questions about who actually ordered it and who controls the weapons. Given this confusion, Congress has every right to ask what the basis is for action at this time? In a press interview yesterday, the President said that the “very limited” action he is considering “may have a positive impact on our national security.” Given this modest mandate and uncertain outcome, Congress has every right to ask why we are considering this action at all?
According to the Constitution, only Congress has the authority to declare war. While the Commander in Chief must have the flexibility to act in the event of an imminent threat, the President’s comments suggest this does not currently exist in Syria. There is time for debate, and no more important subject for Congress to consider. Deploying our armed forces is a serious commitment of the highest order, and we should only consider it in cases where our vital national security interests are at stake. Our allies have demonstrated a willingness to do proper due diligence on this issue. We owe it to the men and women in our armed forces, who would execute this mission, to do no less. When and if President Obama makes a decision on Syria, he must immediately call a special session of Congress and persuade the American people that what he proposes is critical to the defense of our nation. I am confident all members of Congress would willingly return to Washington to work with him on this issue.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Drive In Movie Theatres

This time of year I think back fondly to the Drive-in Theaters of my youth. In the post World War II era , 1950's families were trying to find an entrainment option as they raised the "baby boom" generation. What follows is an "Oldie Goldie post" of a few years ago.

As a kid I loved drive in theaters .In fact, if I were to pick the favorite thing of my youth it would be drive-in movies. I grew up in Ogden, Utah; Boise, Idaho; Roseburg, Oregon; and Coos Bay/North Bend, Oregon in the 1950's. Each of these  towns had drive in theaters. I can remember going to two or three movies a week in Ogden in the summer before we had TV. This was when I was 4 or 5. My dad didn't like indoor movies because as he said there was always someone behind him chewing on gum which he hated. My mom would make us sandwiches (usually tuna) along with Kool-Aid in a thermos and cookies.(Coke was too expensive) There was always a commercial before the intermission between the double features for the snack bar food. I remember an ad for a foreign food I had never heard of called "pizza". My dad said it tasted like card board so we never got any. My mom loved pop corn so we always got some. To draw family's the theaters sometimes had special attractions like pony rides or steam engine train rides. I still have a black & white photo in my "movie room" of my sister and I on ponies taken at a drive-in theater before the movie. We must have been 4 and 6 years of age. It is one of my favorite pictures. They all had playground equipment we would play on till the movie started. The movie always started with a cartoon. I remember running to the car
 as the cartoon started. I even loved and still love the previews. Before the movie dad's would often turn on their spot lights and play games on the screen.

The movies, or "shows" as we called them, often,  in retrospect , were not that good. I can remember Ma &Pa Kettle, Here Come the Nelsons ( Ozzie and Harriet before TV) and the Bowery Boys. Not real sophisticated stuff. But their was always John Wayne. I can remember campaigning for weeks to go see "Blood Alley". Not because I knew anything about it other than it's name and John Wayne was in it. I loved saying "Blooooood Alley." I knew if Jeff Chandler was in a movie I could talk my mom into going. My sister who still likes to go to bed early would always sleep through the second feature but not me. My dad would always make fun of the kissing scenes and my mom would always kid us about the hero being the only one left standing at the end of  war/western movies. My mom would put her head on my dad's shoulder and fall asleep. The sound was usually terrible but I loved the big screen and how it transported me out of small town America in the days before color TV. Most of them are gone now the victim of VCR's and now DVD's and high land prices. I still miss them.
If I could go back in time to be with Mom & Dad & Marva it would be at a John Wayne western at a drive in movie.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Happy 38th Wedding Anniversary

Happy Anniversary Dear!
38 years ago today I married Janie at the Perozzi Fountain, Lithia Park, in Ashland Oregon.  During those 38 years we have not only been husband and wife but business partners who work together in our office every day.  .  We have for those 38 years been  basically together 24/7. Her strengths compliment my weakness.  While I tend to be a dreamer and idealist she is  practical and a realist.  I couldn't have ask for a better mother for our two children. I am sure they inherited her smarts and my passion. I would be lost without her.   She is my best friend.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Ted Cruz, Traitor to his Class

Rich Lowery of National Review has great column on why Progressives,  aka Liberals, hate Ted Cruz. Some quotes:

Democrats and liberal pundits would surely dislike Cruz no matter where he went to school, but his pedigree adds an extra element of shocked disbelief to the disdain. “Princeton and Harvard should be disgraced,” former Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell exclaimed on MSNBC, as if graduating a constitutionalist conservative who rises to national prominence is a violation of the schools’ mission statements.....

One of the left’s deepest prejudices is that its opponents are stupid, and Cruz tramples on it....

Cruz lacks all defensiveness about his positions, another source of annoyance to his opponents, who are used to donning the mantle of both intellectual and moral superiority.
Ted Cruz has picked up the flag that fell when  Bill Buckley died!

Read more:

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Camille Paglia on Hillary Clinton

"As a registered Democrat, I am praying for a credible presidential candidate to emerge from the younger tier of politicians in their late 40s. A governor with executive experience would be ideal. It’s time to put my baby-boom generation out to pasture! We’ve had our day and managed to muck up a hell of a lot. It remains baffling how anyone would think that Hillary Clinton (born the same year as me) is our party’s best chance. She has more sooty baggage than a 90-car freight train. And what exactly has she ever accomplished — beyond bullishly covering for her philandering husband? She’s certainly busy, busy and ever on the move — with the tunnel-vision workaholism of someone trying to blot out uncomfortable private thoughts.
I for one think it was a very big deal that our ambassador was murdered in Benghazi. In saying “I take responsibility” for it as secretary of state, Hillary should have resigned immediately. The weak response by the Obama administration to that tragedy has given a huge opening to Republicans in the next presidential election. The impression has been amply given that Benghazi was treated as a public relations matter to massage rather than as the major and outrageous attack on the U.S. that it was.
Throughout history, ambassadors have always been symbolic incarnations of the sovereignty of their nations and the dignity of their leaders. It’s even a key motif in “King Lear.” As far as I’m concerned, Hillary disqualified herself for the presidency in that fist-pounding moment at a congressional hearing when she said, “What difference does it make what we knew and when we knew it, Senator?” Democrats have got to shake off the Clinton albatross and find new blood. The escalating instability not just in Egypt but throughout the Mideast is very ominous. There is a clash of cultures brewing in the world that may take a century or more to resolve — and there is no guarantee that the secular West will win."’s_best_chance/

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Oregon Duck Coach Helfrich: "Drop DirecTV. Make the Switch Today!"

New campaign by Pac-12 Networks to go after DircTV for not carrying the Pac 12 Networks.  Make the switch to Dish!!!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Ted Cruz 2016

The left wing Daily Beast has a "news story" on Ted Cruz which they think is negative.  However, I think Ted should put it on his website minus the headline.  My favorite quote from the article:

"More than anyone I knew, Ted seemed to have arrived in college with a fully formed worldview,” Butler College colleague Erik Leitch said.  “And what strikes me now, looking at him as an adult and hearing the things he's saying, it seems like nothing has changed. Four years of an Ivy League education, Harvard Law, and years of life experience have altered nothing."

Some truths are self evident!

Another great quote:

While Cruz may have been disliked, and intensely so, by many of his classmates, he found a close and longtime friend in a gregarious, popular student from Jamaica named David Panton, who became Cruz’s tag-team partner on Princeton’s renowned debate squad, as well as his roommate for the remainder of their time at Princeton and when they both attended Harvard Law School. .....

“Unlike what others may say, I consider Ted to be very kind. He is a very, very gentle-hearted person,” Panton told The Daily Beast. "He took me under his wing and was a mentor to me. He was very kind to me. I am a much smarter and much better person today because of Ted Cruz."

Monday, August 12, 2013

Summer of 2013

 We are in the "dog days" of Summer.  All the stores have their summer merchandise on half price and "Back to School" merchandise is everywhere. With no Olympics or Political Conventions I have kept myself occupied with all of those household projects.  I always want to get them done before  the college football season starts.  So far this summer I put up the gazebo on the back deck,  spread over 250 wheelbarrow loads of pea gravel on the walkways around our home, spread bark, cleaned the garage, done paint touch up, washed our window blinds, wash windows on both floors inside and out, and steam cleaned the carpets on all three floors while keeping up with my weekly chores such as laundry, vacuuming, and yard work.

I try and schedule steam cleaning the carpets for August so I can open the doors and windows to get the carpets to dry faster.  However earlier in the week the smoke from the local forest fires made that impossible.  However we had a glorious weekend and I was able to open all the windows and the carpets were ready for me to put back the furniture in 24 hours.

Next weekend it is time to celebrate the important birthday of a family member and the following weekend our 38th Wedding Anniversary. Then Labor Day weekend the college football season begins.


Thursday, August 08, 2013

You Are Never Too Old for Popsicles

What with the forest fire smoke here in Southern Oregon you need to find other things of Summer to enjoy and sometimes it is the simple things of life that give pleasure. One of the things I like in the summer are Popsicles. Now, I have switched to "sugar free" Popsicle but they taste great. Enjoy the Summer!

Time Magazine Interview with Ted Cruz

Time Magazine has a great interview with Ted Cruz:

Wednesday, August 07, 2013

5 Facts About Benghazi and Hillary Plus 1.

Let me add a 6th! She lied to the relatives of the 4 dead Americans when their bodies came home  to America.  At the airport hanger she whispered in the ears of grieving family members it was all about "a video." Shame on her!  She has no honor!

Monday, August 05, 2013

Madeleine Lebeau Last Surviving Cast Member of Movie Casablanca (1943)

As I was working today I heard the tune "As Time Go's By" from the 1943 movie, Casablanca, and started to wonder if any of the cast of that classic movie is still alive.  Based upon a little research I found the Rick's alcoholic girlfriend is the only cast member still alive. She was a French actress and her part was a case of fiction imitating life.  The following is from Wikipedia:

 "LeBeau married actor Marcel Dalio in 1939 (his second marriage). They had met while performing a play together. In 1939 she appeared in her first movie, the melodrama Jeunes filles en détresse (Girls in Distress).
In June 1940, LeBeau and the Jewish Dalio fled Paris ahead of the invading German army and reached Lisbon. They are presumed to have received transit visas from Aristides de Sousa Mendes, allowing them to enter Spain and journey on to Portugal. It took them two months to obtain visas to Chile. However, when their ship, the S.S. Quanza, stopped in Mexico, they were stranded (along with around 200 other passengers) when the Chilean visas they had purchased turned out to be forgeries. Eventually, they were able to get temporary Canadian passports and entered the United States..."

She worked her way to Hollywood and

"she received the role of Yvonne, Rick’s jilted mistress, in Casablanca. The Warner Brothers studios signed her to a $100-a-week contract for twenty-six weeks to be in a number of films. On June 22, while she was filming her scenes in Casablanca, her husband, Marcel Dalio, who played Emil the croupier in the film, filed for divorce in Los Angeles on the grounds of desertion. Shortly before the release of the movie, Warner Brothers terminated her contract. Since the death of Joy Page in April 2008, LeBeau has been the last surviving cast member of Casablanca."

I remember the first time I saw the movie as a teenager the scene where all the patrons of Rick's Café stand and sing the "La Marseillaise"   was the most emotional  and the most memorable scene of the movie. During the singing there is a close-up of Madeleine who says at the end: "Viva La France"

This is from the IMDB page on the movie:

"During the scene where so many patrons of Rick's started singing La Marseillaise, the French national anthem, many of the actors in that scene were refugees from Europe and their tears were real, including Madeleine's."

Saturday, August 03, 2013

BOOK: "My War" by Andy Rooney

A few days ago a friend loaned me this book and I have not been able to put it down.  I read till 1 AM this morning and then got up at 6 AM to finish it.

First of all let me point out I am not a fan of Andy Rooney. I still really don't like the guy but his book speaks of a time and place. Andy is gone and so is most of his generation; but, they have a story to tell that should not be forgotten by generations to come.

This is not a history of World War II but a story of Andy's experiences  in the war.  He was drafted out of collage into the United States Army a few months before the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941.  He went through training in North Carolina and was assigned to an Artillery Unit.  His unit was sent on a troop ship to England and once in England he was selected to be a reporter for the Army newspaper "Stars and Stripes" which kept the troops informed about what was going on in the war and the rest of the world.  Even though it was an Army publication General Eisenhower saw to it that, subject to standard wartime  censorship, it was given the independence of the rest of the press. Andy as a reporter was able to roam the world in search of news stories.   He flew 5 bombing raids from England with the U.S. Air corps over Nazi occupied Europe in B-17 and B-24. He roamed war ravaged London, was at the Normandy invasion of France, was in Paris for the liberation, and was at the Rhine River when the Allies invaded the heart of Germany. Stars and Stripes even sent him to India and China.  He was a G.I. but had the freedom few soldiers had.  Rooney never had "military bearing"  and was resentful of Officers and his superiors so it was good he ended up as a reporter.  I disagree with his criticism of Patton but his stories of London and Paris are the things legends are made of.  When the Americans entered Paris he quoted legendary reporter Ernie Pyle as saying (and I paraphrase for modern sensibilities) If an American soldiers can't get a girl tonight he isn't interested.

Rooney  writes about the experience of war:

"If you weren't killed or seriously wounded,  it was an exhilarating time of life.  Most of us live our lives at half speed and on schedule.  We sleep when we aren't tired, eat when we aren't hungry and go to the movies or watch television to laugh or cry in order to transport ourselves out of our real lives into someone else's as if our lives were not interesting, funny or sad enough to satisfy us."

"Life is real at war, concentrated and intense, It is lived at full speed."

In college before the war Rooney was somewhat of a pacifist.  He writes this of his thoughts  when  he entered the Nazi concentration camp at Buchenwald:

"I grew up a skeptic and, while the trait has been an asset to me as a reporter, there have been times when it skewed my vision of events.  In high school I read of German atrocities in World War I and decide many of those reports had been propaganda.  I felt there were very likely as many atrocities committed on our side as on theirs. In college, during those sessions with Professor Boulding, I was similarly suspicious of the concentration-camp stories about which there was minimal detail and no substantiations..... I've thought of it ten thousand times since on the occasion when I've become infuriated with people denying that the murder camps existed.... I did get to Buchenwald..... and I stared. I stared in embarrassed silence, thinking about the doubts, I'd had in college and even more recently....I was ashamed of myself for ever having considered  refusing to serve in the Army. ....I'd like to have taken Ken Boulding by the hand and shown him around Buchenwald.  I was angry that I'd been fooled.  For the first time I knew for certain that any peace is not better than any war."

The book is full of reports of his trips back to London, Paris and Normandy during the many years that followed World War II in his long life. 

Let me end this post with  his report of his first day at Normandy on Utah Beach shortly after D-Day:

"I landed on Utah Beach several day after the first assault waves....When I came in, row on row of dead American soldiers were laid out on the sand.....They were covered with olive-drab blankets, just their feet sticking out at the bottom, their GI boots sticking out.  I remember their boots-- all the same on such different boys.....

It's not possible for anyone who's been in a war to describe the terror of it to anyone who hasn't.  I wrote a poem the day I came ashore, writing in my jeep with a pad on my knee.  I thought it was a poem."

"Here" the battleground guide will say when the tourist come,
"They, fought the bloody battle for the beach."
They'll talk on with pointers in their hands
To a bus-load of people
About events that never happened
In a place they never were.
How would anyone know that John Lacy died
In that clump of weeds by the wagon path
As he looked to the left toward Simpson....
And caught a bullet behind the ear?
And if there had been a picture of it
It wouldn't show the snapshot in his breast pocket
of his girlfriend with his mom and dad
At Christmas."

"......on five subsequent visits to the beaches over the years, I've been pleased to find how accurate I was."

Thursday, August 01, 2013

New 2013 Oregon Football Poster

Greatest Plays in Oregon Football History - New! (HD)

If you are an Oregon Duck football fan do yourself a favor and  watch this video....... stay till the end.  It brought tears to my eyes. So many memories.

Summer Turns Ugly in Medford Due to Forest Fires!

                                    (Medford this week)


As July turned to August in Southern Oregon the hot but nice summer of 2013 ended with at least 6 large forest fires to the West and North West of Medford in Douglas and Josephine counties. Over 3000 firefighters have come from all over the United States to fight and  some of the Oregon National Guard has been mobilized to help. The days of sitting out on my deck reading the morning paper and having my coffee in the cool  early morning has come to an end. The West winds from the Oregon Coast have blown the smoke into the bowl of mountains that  surround Medford and the Rogue Valley. It looks like a heavy fog outside all day but smells like smoke.They have canceled most outdoor events in Southern Oregon including the plays at the outdoor Elizabethan Theater of the Ashland Shakespearian Festival.  We can smell the smoke in our house and office.  There is no escaping it and the weather folks on the local TV stations say it is here to stay for the foreseeable future. None of the fires are under control and minimal fire lines have been established. It is common to see people walking around town with facemasks.

I have changed the filter on our home air conditioner at home and have put additional insulation around all outside doors.  I read online that hot tea and chicken noodle soup is good to fight off the effects of the smoke so my wife made some soup for lunch and I am drinking tea as I type this. August may be the month of DVD and Blu Ray movies in the basement man cave. Sure wish we could get some rain but all we are getting are dry lightning storms which cause more fires.

How long till football!