Saturday, December 27, 2008

Felix the cat goes to the vet...

As you know, Felix is the domestic shorthair kitty kat who chose our property as his new home. We call him Felix because well--he looks like a Felix. We got him into a carrier (my goodness that kitty has a set of vocal cords!) on the morning after Christmas and took him to the folks at Suwannee Oaks Animal Clinic (here's a shoutout to our favorite vet of nearly 30 years!!). He got a physical, bloodwork testing for feline leukemia and AIDS and he was neutered. The vet staff said he is in perfect health!

Vin picked him up from the vet several hours later and when he got him home we let him out and into one of the spare bedrooms with the door closed. He looked around a bit, fell over here and there because he was still drugged up, but otherwise he recovered really well. He was so cute, let us pick him up and snuggle with him. Normally he lets us pet him, he meows and does his little rolling around routine, but this time he let us do whatever else we wanted with him LOL. Yes, it was the drugs LOL. Good drugs too!

We let him outside the next day and ever since he's been coming back regularly (as he did before) to eat and drink and play a little. It would be nice if we could foster him inside until we find someone to adopt him but Peeps and Pebs won't have it. So until then I've got to make sure we keep an eye out for him, that no harm comes to him.

The vet said that Felix is about 12-14 months old, we knew he was young but not that young. I think he'd be terrific around people and other cats who are non-aggressive and not all that territorial. If you could see him in person, he's so adorable, I mean you look at him and you just want to take him home, seriously. But everyone I talk to has a pretty good reason why they can't take him. All I need is someone with one good reason why they can! I've emailed everyone I know with the flyer and I'm going to post them at publix and around town. I would like to adopt him out to someone I know that way I can see him. I mean, we've gotten attached to him, and well we just want to know something about the people who adopt him.

We're willing to transport him to get him to a good home. We'd go as far north as Savannah, as far west as Tallahassee, and as far south as Sebring so that covers pretty good territory. But I'm hoping someone here in our own backyard (so to speak) will want him.

Think good thoughts will ya?

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Hi my name is Jess and I'm addicted to...

"Icanhascheezburger.com"

and it is so pathetic.

Oh it isn't just me, everyone I've sent the URL to is now addicted. Just when you think you finally found the "it" picture, the "one" that is the funniest damn one you've ever seen...along comes one on the next page that has you laughing so hard you either pee your pants, spew (insert current drink of choice) on your computer screen, or both.

I showed this to a coworker one day, we look at a few pics, she's laughing, I go back to my office, then two hours later I go back down to see her and she's on page 27....the problem is there's a nearly INFINITE number of pages of these cat pics!

And this is just "LOL Cats" I haven't even visited "LOL Dogs" yet!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Another slimy collection agency on the prowl...

Progressive Management Systems 1-866-767-8320 bills itself as a collection agency however what they really do is continuously harass (illegally I might add) unsuspecting law-abiding citizens demanding to speak with someone who may or may not live there, demanding payment for a bill which may or may not be valid, and insisting that the person they are calling give them a social security number so they can validate whether or not the person they've called is the person they're looking for.

This company is contacting my parents by phone constantly asking for my mother but giving a Miami address. We haven't lived in Miami in nearly 30 years! My father told these people they have the wrong number, wrong person, and asks them to identify themselves and they refuse to do that and continue to call. They also demand my dad give them mom's social security number so they can verify it's NOT her! My father of course refuses and they get nasty with him and so dad called me...because he knows I thrive on blogging about cons like this.

Progressive Management Systems is an agency with offices in Massachusetts, Nevada and California. They has been sued on several occasions in regards to their violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), one of the few pieces of legislation designed to protect we the citizens against companies like Progressive. There are the cases of Eddie Wayne Hutchison v. Progressive Management Systems, Inc., Homay v. Progressive Management Systems, Inc. , and Dileo v. Progressive Management Services.

A search of the Nevada Secretary of State Corporate Records shows that the company is also known as "R.M. Galicia, Inc" and Tim Banta is Director and President. The Treasurer is Rodolfo Galicia and the Secretary is William Gutierrez. Their address is listed as 1521 W. Cameron Ave, 1st Floor, Covina, CA 91790. The phone number is (626) 813-6200

R.M. Galicia is listed as a "foreign corporation" and they have also been sued for violation of the FDCPA as in Homay v. R.M. Galicia, Keeling v. R.M. Galicia, Hyman v. Verizon Wireless LLC and R.M. Galicia, Rivas v. R.M. Galicia, Buchanan v. R.M. Galicia, Woodward v. R.M. Galicia, Gibson v. R.M. Galicia, and Dawson v. R.M. Galicia....just to name a few.

If you really want to piss some people there off, you can always contact Kristina Cabral, Client Liaison at PMS. Her number is 800-258-7482 ext 6109 and her email is kristina@pmscollects.com or you can contact Michelle Taylor at ext 6006. Her email is michelle@pmscollects.com.

Do some research online for these two companies, the complaints are endless.

If you're contacted by PMS, this is what you do--tell them to stop calling you. If they continue, send them a certified letter w/return receipt requesting to cease calls. File a a complaint with the attorney general in your state and file a complaint with the federal trade commission. Click here for the FTC's complaint site, they walk you through it, it's very simple!

The bottom line is they are crooks who make their money attempting to scare people into paying debts that are either not owed, never existed, or past the statute of limitations. This is fraud and citizens have rights. The only way to put these people out of business is for the people they prey upon to do something about it!

Anyway when I dig up more I'll let you know...

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Crucifix offensive to Muslims?

Before you get all up in arms, remember there are many a good Muslim who are not at all offended by Christian customs.......this is just an overly protective PC move by British officials.

According to this story, a British prison has banned the crucifix in a newly built chapel so as to avoid offending Muslim inmates. According to a source: "On one side of the room there are heated foot baths for the Muslim inmates, but on the other side there is this silly little movable alter that can be hidden away at a moment’s notice."

Why would it be necessary to hide an altar in a moment's notice?

I think there's a huge misconception about what mainstream Muslims believe about Jesus. Muslims do not see Jesus as having been an infidel. In fact, in Islam, Jesus is believed to be a messenger of God who was sent to guide the children of Israel. Muslims also believe Jesus was born of a virgin and that the birth was miraculous. They believe that he ascended alive into Heaven, but they do not believe he was crucified. Muslims do not believe in the Trinity, that Jesus is the son of God, rather they believe him to have been a prophet. They also believe Jesus will come back someday and defeat the antichrist.

The crucifix was left out this prison chapel at the suggestion of an Imam, a Muslim spiritual leader. It seems crazy that any spiritual leader of any religion would be so intolerant of the beliefs of others. This means either the idea of having a crucifix in the chapel is being blown out of proportion by the usual ultra-sensitive and overly PC Brits or---the Imam is not really a spiritual leader at all, but a hate-mongering, religious fanatic. Take your pick.

All I can say is that a multitude of religions exist on this earth and it's time that all faiths were respected or we respect none at all.

Friday, December 12, 2008

New Illinois license plate slogan...

"Illinois...only three of the last eight governors actually served prison time, the rest were acquitted!"

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Now that I'm on my way...

Well, I'm finished with one college degree and moving on to another. I'm an "A" student with a 3.64 GPA and graduating with honors and accepted to one of the best Universities in the country, having earned straight A's in the courses required for admission. I beat the pants off other students in my major courses with my critical thinking and writing skills. You gotta love it when you're the one who sets the curve for the course!

And to think---back in that small rural high school, people didn't like me because I wasn't like them.

To think there were teachers who didn't believe in me and thought I wouldn't amount to anything because I got into trouble a few times.

To think about how many of my schoolmates treated me----the ones who wouldn't sit with me on the school bus, didn't invite me to spend the night at their house, didn't want to go to the prom or dances with me, shunned me because I didn't wear the latest designer clothes, didn't join all the cool clubs, wasn't an athlete, cheerleader or in the band, and didn't participate in beauty pageants.

And there were the boys who used to ridicule me publicly, calling me names and embarassing me when I did stupid things to get into trouble. And ahh yes, the girls with their noses stuck up in the air because they were supposedly better than me. They were the popular gals who were cheerleaders, played sports, wore the nice clothes, had the cool boyfriends, drove their own cars, and I envied them.

Oh, and the parent of a friend who forbid her daughters to hang out with me because I was a "bad influence" because I did a few stupid things. They couldn't even stand next to me in the lunch line. I wasn't violent, never did drugs or alcohol, just stupid kid stuff, not the kind of stuff to rub off on others. She didn't like me yet her kids were doing stupid things too.

It wasn't until my senior year that I felt I was accepted. I was editor of the school paper, joined the yearbook staff, people read my stuff, they liked it. And then we graduated and all was forgotten.

Until ten years later at the first reunion when suddenly everyone was talking to me, they liked me. They liked my military service, they thought I was pretty, they could see I was nice and I was smart. To them I was somebody. For me, I was just being me, but they were seeing someone they never saw before, someone they never wanted to see before.

And now it's been over twenty years and I've since been over it. My friends Susan, Jeanette and KY have discussed our younger days in school, when they were popular and I wasn't, and how they all had their own share of problems like I did, only who knew? They were among what I call "the nice kids", they never mocked me, or anyone else. You remember people like that. When we became friends years later, it was meant to be for they are very dear to me and I to them.

What's past is past and I look back now and think how silly we all acted back then!

But despite getting over the past, which I have done, there's something I must do, that I've always wanted to do, and now I can. It's something I must say to all the others--the ones who thought they were better than me. Call it payback!

I know Susan, KY, and Jeanette, my dear friends, who know me all too well will understand why I must do it, just once....for me...


Monday, December 08, 2008

You're going to be sorry...

I'm not really sure who the "you" is, but I think it refers to all of us. After reading the latest about the new "car czar" I am left wondering why there is no "banking czar" or "wall street czar". After all if we need someone to watch the automakers and make sure they're not abusing their bailout funds, shouldn't there be one for all of the others?

The corporations receiving bailout funds are going to regret it. The government will be up their ass and there's not a damn thing they'll be able to do about it. I don't know that pumping more money into an already failing company is the right thing to do. When a company performs poorly there's a reason. It's either due to people not having enough money to buy the product, overproduction, underproduction, poor investments, lack of productivity, prices set too high, bad management....the list goes on and on.

I'm no economist but I believe there are two things that must be done before more money should be poured into a failing business. The first is to take a good hard look at why the business if failing, the second is to come up with a plan to save it. Only when there is a viable plan in writing should further investment be considered.

Would you pour your hard-earned money into a business if it didn't take those steps first? No, you wouldn't.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Someone has gone some 'splainin' to do...

A few months ago our esteemed Governor Charlie Crist took a 12-day trip to Europe for business purposes, which cost a whopping $430,000. He took his fiancee, her sister, 9 bodyguards, a photographer, 65 Florida business executives, e people tied to the sugar industry, and he probably carried along a few assistants/secretaries.His personal expenses were $30,000 were not charged to state dollars rather paid for by business execs.

That total of $430K averages about $35,000 per day!

Of that $430K, the nine bodyguards racked up a tab of more than $148,000 on meals, hotels, and transportation.

That's roughly $1370 per day per bodyguard!

I'd love to hear the excuse for that one! I think we're owed an explanation of why that trip cost so much.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Rewarding bad decision-making...

I don't even know what to say about this story....but I'm glad the gals at one of my favorite sites posted it. I needed to be pissed off about something today.

But it is nice to know that our hard-earned tax dollars go to support such stupidity and lack of common sense.

FLINT, Michigan -- With 10 kids and no vehicle, Latrica Ryan is used to juggling.

Going to a movie or out for dinner is a like plotting a major tactical undertaking. Not that such outings happen that much.

"It would really be nice if I could take my kids where they needed to go, instead of having to find them a ride," Ryan said. "And when we do go somewhere, I have to pay four or five people (for gas) to get us all there.

"I have booster seats and car seats. It's a lot."

Ryan, is a 29-year-old single stay-at-home mother of five sons and five daughters, who range in age from 2 months to 13 years."


You can click on the link above for the story, I just can't post anymore, it just ticks me off. I mean here we are shocked and angry that the government is bailing out corporations for mistakes they have made, but they've been doing it all along with the "common people". By giving Latrica Ryan, the poor mother of ten children a handout for the past ten years, they have essentially encouraged her to have more children. She figures once she has the children, other people can help her take care of them.

It's pathetic.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

The lack of human decency...

I've been mulling over the terrible incident in Valley Stream, NY where hundreds of Wal Mart shoppers trampled 34-year old Jdimytai Damour to death as they stormed into the store for the latest gadgets and goodies. I just can't get it out of my mind that human beings could act this way. If these people have a conscience, they will always have to live with the fact that they killed an innocent human being for a video game or plasma television. That is if they have a conscience, which is debatable considering no one stopped to help him.

I cringe when I think that there are people out there who value material goods over human lives. It's just hard to believe that a man could be trampled and NOBODY would stop to help him. People who behave like this are savages, there's just no other words I can find right now to describe them. I suppose I should not be surprised though, Americans are becoming desensitized more and more every day, the younger generation already seems to be there. Violence, destruction, cruelty--none of it phases them. Why? They're used to it. It's everywhere and it's glorified.

When Jdimytai Damour died, he wasn't harming anyone, he was just trying to do his job, in an effort to take care of himself and his family. Like the rest of us, he was just trying to grab his share of the American Dream, only in one moment it was shattered. It was shattered because of materialism, greed, and a complete lack of conscience and human decency.

I hope every single person who stormed through those doors that morning has to live with this guilt for the rest of their life.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Men who don't take care of their children...

There's a lot of things that suck in this world but one of the worst is a man who won't take care of his children. I've got a really good friend who isn't just a friend, she's like a member of my family, I've known her about 18 years now, we met through her old roommate who was one of my coworkers, we became instant friends and we went through a lot together! Long time ago she met the man of her dreams or so she thought and married him, and we all thought they would be so happy. I don't know what changed, but something did. He turned out to be an asshole and they divorced. He's in the military and makes good money but does not want to help pay to support his kids and refuses to see them.

My friends is a real survivor, trust me, she's educated, smart, and she's motivated, she does what it takes to take care of herself and her kids. But times are tough and damnit she shouldn't have to go this alone. All I can say is what comes around goes around. In the meantime my friend is so awesome for continuing to be a great mom to her kids!

Kudos girl!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Well well well, he got the point

Funny how FGCU president Wilson Bradshaw changed his mind about the public Christmas decorations on campus after the news story caused such an outrage. He realized after the fact it was a mistake. Meanwhile, I'm thinking "what? you didn't think people would be pissed off?"

Again, makes me wonder about his ability to lead the University, period.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Oh who cares what the voters want? They don't know anything...

I was reading recently about how NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg's popularity has gone down by nine percentage points. Well duh...what do you think happens when the mayor oversteps his bounds and declares himself dictator--throwing aside the law which was voted on by the people...

I couldn't believe my eyes when I read awhile back that NY Mayor Michael Bloomberg convinced the city council to change the law on mayoral term limits so he could serve again. And I think one of the reasons there wasn't much opposition way back when rumors spread is because people really thought it was a joke---the people knew they had voted on the two-term limit, who is the mayor or city council to change that?

The reason there's a two term limit is because NYC voters voted it that way, not just once, but twice. And what do you think Bloomberg says is the reason for his actions? Yep, he dumped the blame on Wall Street and the economic crisis (surprise!)...

"I don't think the city needs another campaign. It's going to be tough enough to get us through this."


Wow! He acts as if the people of NYC can't go on without him, that they have never been through worse crises in their lives.

Bloomberg shouldn't get too excited over his whopping 59% approval rating, it just means 41% of the people think he's an asshole.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

There's always some idiot...

Way back in December 2006, I posted a rant about an office chair I'd purchased for my office at work, with UF dollars, which broke, sending me flying backwards and I'm damn nearly lucky I wasn't injured!


Fifty-seven comments later (that's right folks--57!) there's one dumbass in the bunch who actually took the time away from his playstation/xbox or whatever the hell those things are called nowadays, just to comment on my post. I mean he tells ME to quit wasting my time writing this stuff? LOL. Hello....who is getting so worked up over reading it?

Sooooo I'm going to honor him by posting it here...

"What do you expect from $100 chair? It should only last a year in the first place. You use the chair for a year, paid almost nothing for it (divide $100/365days) and you want full credit. I can understand 30 days, but a year? Then you waste your time and everyone else you complain to along with writing this blog, When you could have used that time just working some additional hours at your job and purchase a new one. It is your type of person who sucks companies dry with your unrealistic expectations (pay little and get the best quality) and demands. Your time is absolutely worthless and you prove it everyday with your distorted point of view. Here is some life counseling which you desperately need: Instead of wasting your time complaining and trying to get something for free, use that time to earn extra money and you will actually come out ahead."


So now everyone can see what a dumbass he is. I mean why should I keep it all to myself?

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

I shouldn't be shocked...

Barney Frank said today to Henry Paulson,

"banks aren't using all the money they've received from the federal government for lending, there's been no effort to reduce foreclosures"


to which Paulson replied to the panel ,

"The rescue package was not intended to be an economic stimulus or an economic recovery package."

What? Are you kidding me? I thought economic recovery was what it was all about. Here is Paulson's speech in October.... what do you think?




Senator Christopher Dodd's remarks about the "big three" automakers today:

"They are seeking treatment for wounds that I believe to a large extent were self-inflicted. No one can say that they didn't see this coming."

You dumbass. Didn't you see this coming? The Congressional approval of the bailout (one of the worst government decisions in American History--and God knows there have been many!) set this thing in motion. Paulson and Bernanke wanted the money to buy up bad mortgages and also to ensure banks had plenty of money to lend, Congress bought into it. But so far it's only gone to the banks to stay afloat AND to corporate giants like JP Morgan so they could buy other companies.

When you bailout one you have to bail out all of them. The remarks that Dodd aimed towards the big three automakers also apply to every single entity that has received bailout funds to date!



Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison said,

"We passed $25 billion in loans in the resolution that was passed in September...and I think if you put $25 billion more on top of the $25 billion they already have, it's going to set a terrible precedent. Why not the airline industry? Why not the other industries?"

Well no shit. The American people, your CONSTITUENTS-- have been asking that question since the proposal of a bailout became known months ago.

Monday, November 17, 2008

One last chance to put the brakes on the bailout train...

Oklahoma Senator Jim Inhofe just introduced a Senate Bill to put the brakes on the bailout and call for Congressional accountability. Senator Inhofe voted against the bailout, and perhaps he can sway those who voted for it last time to go his way this time. There's got to be responsibility here. Here's a piece of his press release from his website...

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, U.S. Senator Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) introduced legislation to amend Section 115 of the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act (EESA) to require an affirmative vote on the part of Congress to approve Treasury's plan for the remaining $350 billion and require a freeze on any remaining funds of the first $350 billion, stating, "It is imperative that we not allow that amount of money to be added to a deficit approaching $1 trillion this year without any input from the legislative branch."

In a speech on the Senate Floor, Senator Inhofe went on to say, "Congress completely abdicated its responsibility by signing a truly blank check over to the Treasury Secretary. However, the lame duck session of Congress offers us a tremendous opportunity to change course. We should take it."

"Though there are still significant challenges in financial markets, it appears that the threat of financial crisis spinning so out of control that we face another Great Depression-which was the original justification for the grant of such sweeping authority-has subsided. Has the need to allow one person to control hundreds of billions of taxpayer dollars and spend as he sees fit subsided as well? I've never seen in my entire career of public service anything like the spectacle we are now witnessing. Is it unreasonable to ask whether or not the additional $350 billion should not be added to a deficit approaching $1 trillion? Congress should have a debate."

By changing a few words, this whole mess can stop right now and we can get the accountability we DESERVE!!!!

Please call your US Senator and get them to SUPPORT this bill!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Whose bright idea was it...

to choose as the topic of my research---the fourth amendment and warrantless administrative searches?

And why didn't anyone stop me???? You family and friends of mine know how I get when I start on an issue like this. But no, you let me go ahead anyway, couldn't convince me to do something simpler could ya? Noooooooooo....let's just let Jess get herself in neck deep in the eleventh hour and watch her suffer for a bit!

:)

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Because I'm so wealthy...

...yesterday I spent $1,135 on ONE, yes ONE crown! One of my molars had a filling older than me LOL and the whole tooth needed to be crowned. My dentist is awesome, she is virtually PAINLESS. It took a few hours, my mouth was numb and of course DH asked me to take a drink out of my water bottle so he could laugh when it went all over the front of me! But hey that was a freebie, I knew what was going to happen.

Anyway, as to the cost of the tooth, well I am alwaying I should spend more money on myself right?

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Two down, one to go.

Finished my math final on Friday night.

Finished the final quiz and extra credit writing assignment in History. Just waiting on the final which comes in two weeks. But everything is DONE!

Now finishing up the Law course but this one's hard because this paper is a bear. Why do I pick such brutal issues? Fourth amendment issues? Yikes!

I'm registered for spring, thank goodness. I went to transfer orientation on Monday, mostly boring but I did enjoy the college and dept advising sessions. My undergrad coordinator got me into the practicum section I needed and I registered for an additional course in West African History. I like to have diversity in my courses and plan to take a few in Latin American and Asian History too, though my focus is still early American History, the Constitution, and European History. Can't really learn History till you learn the history of other nations and cultures, I mean we are all tied in together, aren't we?

Anyway, six hours per term, it will take three years. I wish I could do one more course per term but three would be too much plus working full time. Well the big date is Spring 2011....I'll only be 42!!

Saturday, November 08, 2008

First the big banks got their cut of the bailout money and turned around and used it for a variety of things including for the purchasing of other companies. Now AIG is getting a big chunk and leaving taxpayers holding the bag. Now the airlines and the automobile industries want their cut.

And so I'm asking...when is it going to end?

It isn't. Can't wait to see who else puts their hand out and how long till Congress decides to increase the original amount of the bailout funds.

Frankly I think we should throw every son of a bitch who voted for it out of office. But I wonder how many Americans really care. After all, three corrupt, lying SOB's retained office--Ted Stevens of Alaska, William Jefferson in Louisiana and Jack Murtha in Pennsylvania.

So how can one have faith in a system where the government elected by the people keeps crooks in office?

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Rescuing injured animals one city at a time...

My good pal the RedQueen just posted something really interesting and informative and I thought I'd pass on her blog post about the H.A.L.O. Chronicles. What is H.A.L.O.?

H.A.L.O., a nonprofit organization dedicated to becoming "The Planet's Animal Ambulance." H.A.L.O.'s mission is to network with other rescue operations to provide emergency care and transport in this kind of situation. I am very proud to be a member of H.A.L.O., and hope that you will join me in following the development of this worthy project.


They're working on a website which is at http://haloplanet.org/ and it needs more work so hang in there. In the meantime, keep up with their blog. Sure it's small now, but every great idea starts small right?

Spread the word! The world could use MORE good people doing MORE good things!!

Sunday, November 02, 2008

I could have predicted this one!

I decided to take the plunge, thanks to Belle

http://www.helloquizzy.com/tests/are-you-a-jackie-or-a-marilyn-or-someone-else-mad-menera-female-icon-quiz

Your result for Are You a Jackie or a Marilyn? Or Someone Else? Mad Men-era Female Icon Quiz...

You Are a Katharine!



You are a Katharine -- "I am happy and open to new things"


Katharines are energetic, lively, and optimistic. They want to contribute to the world.



How to Get Along with Me

* * Give me companionship, affection, and freedom.
* * Engage with me in stimulating conversation and laughter.
* * Appreciate my grand visions and listen to my stories.
* * Don't try to change my style. Accept me the way I am.
* * Be responsible for youself. I dislike clingy or needy people.
* * Don't tell me what to do.


What I Like About Being a Katharine

* * being optimistic and not letting life's troubles get me down
* * being spontaneous and free-spirited
* * being outspoken and outrageous. It's part of the fun.
* * being generous and trying to make the world a better place
* * having the guts to take risks and to try exciting adventures
* * having such varied interests and abilities


What's Hard About Being a Katharine

* * not having enough time to do all the things I want
* * not completing things I start
* * not being able to profit from the benefits that come from specializing; not committing to a career
* * tendency to be ungrounded; getting lost in plans or fantasies
* * feeling confined when I'm in a one-to-one relationship

Thursday, October 30, 2008

During rough times I miss Phil Hartman!

He always made me laugh on my worst days! I love this segment when he did "hypothetical interviews" on his show...

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

The facebook project...

One of my pet projects on hold for several years now has been an alumni list of our former graduate students. Finally, I made time to do it. The facebook project has grown and we now have 122 members and growing daily. I've tracked down at least 113 alumni in the past two weekse, six months from now maybe thenumber will be up to 300.

Many of my former students ask "how did you find me?" and I explained that it wasn't easy but I was persistent. Iit took about two dozen online resources, search engines and of course I could not have done it without public records. I just know how to find information, just ask the RedQueen, she knows me better than anyone.

And so this is just the beginning of this project, it's going to get much bigger before I'm through!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

I came up with an idea of putting together an experiment in taxation. This experiment will take place from January 1, 2009 to December 31, 2009. All of us who are participating plan to retain all receipts for every expenditure from the largest to the most insignificant purchase.

We don't have the final list yet but I believe 100% of the participants will be women. The large majority will be married with children and military spouses. I can't give you exact data yet, but that will come later on.

The purpose of this is to determine the amount paid in taxes (including surchages and fees which are essentially taxes) by the average American. Now granted military folks don't pay taxes on certain things and we're accounting for that.

DH and I also have to account for some things for instance we rent our place, but the guy who owns it pays property taxes on the house and five acres. Through public records I know what property taxes are paid so I can divide that up and include it into the cost of the rent. Therefore, considering that the taxes are included, I will be listing them when calculating taxes paid.

The goal is to figure out what the average middle-class American (such as DH and me) pay in all taxes. People sometimes forget that federal income tax isn't the only tax. We are taxed for social security, medicare, utility bills and other things. Most have a state income tax, we live in Florida and do not.

At the end of 2009 I should be able to present you with a number from all of us who are participating in the project.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

95% of Americans are going to get a tax cut
We're going to save the middle class
95% of working families are going to get a tax cut

Confusing isn't it? Considering that "working families" are considered single or two parents with children who earn less than $35,000 per year.

Since when does 95% of America make less than $35,000 per year?

Since when is that considered middle class?

Why aren't people who make more than $35,000 per year "in a family" not included as "working?" Do people who make more than that not work hard enough to be considered a "working family?"

Why are married couples with no kids (DINKS) excluded?

Why do they get a tax break because they have kids and I don't?

If you're going to apply tax cuts, everyone who pays taxes (and ONLY everyone who pays taxes) should get a cut, not just those who have children.

Do I sound bitter? Sure I am, I'm tired of the crap.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

What's to know? I know it all already LOL!

So I've got to spend eight hours on Monday, November 10th at Transfer Preview. I tried telling the Preview people that I've worked there fifteen years and I handle admissions, advising, registration, you name it, I know how to do it. But no---it doesn't matter. They tell me that when i go to transfer preview I will learn about all the crap I already know. Yes advisement will be just about the only thing that I will actually get out of it, but even there I'm ahead because I've been in touch with advisors and the undergrad coordinator for over a year now. I've already got my registration date, classes picked out, and adjusted my work schedule to them. I've already got a Gator 1 ID because I'm staff, I have my staff parking decal, I don't need to know where to live or places to eat on campus or any of that...

What I find really funny is the immunization requirement. I've been exposed to thousands of students over the years from nearly every country in the world---and now I've got to prove I don't carry measles or rubella so I can register for classes. Yes I get why they require it but uh---how can I be exposed to thousands of students from around the world for the past fifteen years and NOT need it because I am staff but as soon as I include "student" in my profile, I have to have it.

If you can explain you win the grand prize.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

All Ayers needs now is a halo...

William Ayers is being hailed by the radical left as a hero, a courageous agent for change. It disgusts me to hear his colleagues and others in higher education praise the man who once used terror as a means of expressing his first amendment rights. When a domestic terrorist becomes a revered University professor educating and indoctrinating young minds, we should worry. We should worry indeed.

Everyone has a past, most adults have done stupid things in their younger lives they later regret and while life goes on, there are things that cannot be swept under the rug especially if one is a member of a terrorist organization whose mission is to undermine the security of the United States. William Ayers had every right to protest our presence in Vietnam, but there were ways to protest that did not incite fear. This man was not only a founding member of Weather Underground, but he planted bombs on US soil, he used terror tactics to incite fear in the American people, his actions were hostile and a direct threat to the security of the United States.

Years later, he's a tenured professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago and he's got every liberal professor in America defending him. They're stepping all over each other rushing to sign their name to "the list" showing support for Ayers.

There's no doubt in my mind that we never should have been in Vietnam. But there are better ways to protest than to plant bombs in one's own country and terrorizing one's fellow citizens. Violence does not bring attention to one's cause, it only makes things worse.

William Ayers himself claimed in later years he did not do enough. Perhaps where he left off with Weather Underground, he has picked up in the classroom. One can't help but wonder what he is teaching his young students and how far they may go in taking over where he left off.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

If you're that dumb, maybe you should attempt...

There's this commercial on TV about a new type of refrigerator, I believe it's an Electrolux. The woman in the commercial daydreams about all the creative ways in which she would dispose of the old fridge. She envisions pushing it off a cliff, a crane tossing it, a train running over it on the tracks, and several other rather humorous ways in which to destroy the appliance. On the bottom of the television screen in each scene where the old fridge is being destroyed are the words "DO NOT ATTEMPT"

Now that has me wondering. Who attempted it which made the company have to resort to putting that message on the screen? I'm wondering...along the way did someone somewhere attempt to throw their large kitchen appliance over a cliff or connect it to a crane to be tossed hundreds of feet in the air?

I just love commercials that are kind enough to include the caveat letting us know we shouldn't do this or that because we might hurt ourselves. All I can think is that if one is stupid enough to attempt it, maybe they need to get hurt. I mean, sometimes that's the only way a person can learn a valuable lesson.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Lost 2.4 pounds since last Tuesday.

Looks like what I'm doing is working eh?

Monday, October 13, 2008

Sign the petition to bring Ratchet the dog home from Iraq...

Sign it because it's the right thing to do. This dog like many befriended by servicemen and women in Iraq, has kept his adopted soldier sane...

The site: http://www.thepetitionsite.com/2/clemency-for-ratchet

Young Ratchet could face the death-penalty by U.S. Army officials

A soldier who saved the life of a young puppy in Iraq and expected to bring him back home with her could see her dog face certain death in Iraq.

Sgt. Gwen Beberg, a decorated soldier, has been held by the military more than 15 months past her original commitment due to the stop-loss policy. Sgt. Beberg befriended puppy Ratchet while serving in Iraq, and sent regular dispatches to her home in Minneapolis charting the dog's process, with 100s of fans tuning in on Facebook to follow the pup's life.

But the U.S. military takes a strict line with soldiers befriending animals, and confiscated Ratchet as Sgt. Beberg prepared to fly home from Baghdad Airport. Bringing wartime pets back home has always been a haphazard affair. It's also against U.S. military rules. In Iraq, adopting a stray is technically a violation of General Order 1B.


Operation Baghdad Pups, a program run by SPCA International, which has the motto 'No buddy gets left behind', is pleading with the U.S. Army to allow Ratchet to fly out of the country - amid fears the dog will die if left behind.

Sgt. Beberg's mother Patricia said: 'This year has been extremely difficult on my daughter and her family. It has been a year of disappointments, loneliness, and fear because of all the sacrifices the army has required of Gwen.

Ratchet was the savior of her sanity. Now they have cruelly ripped Ratchet away from her and sentenced him to death. I don't know how my daughter will cope. Ratchet has been her lifeline."

Sgt. Beberg is also under military investigation for befriending the dog that saved her life.

A close friend of Sgt Beberg said: 'It hasn't been easy for her - and the puppy she saved has been one of the few things that has kept her going. She's shared pictures of him as he grew from a frightened ball of fur to an adorable young dog.




You'd think the Army had better things to do eh?

Sunday, October 12, 2008

The weight loss challenge, so far so good...

So far I've done pretty good this week on my weight watchers. I am proud of the progress. Except for the cramps I'm having :( I feel pretty good!

DH brought home a Publix cheesecake Friday night and I thought about having some, it was on my mind, then it disappeared---and I did not touch the cheesecake at all!!!

Also we had a doc's appointment (routine checkups) last Tuesday and we were late going home, DH stopped at a drive-thru but I did NOT have anything, I waited till we got home!

My weakness was Friday night on the way home, we stopped and all I had was a McD's french fry, yes a large, it was 13 points. They were good but really I didn't enjoy them like I once did. I also logged them on my weight watchers journal.

I went over a little on my points today when I had a few pieces of cheese--got some mozzarella and kerrygold from Ireland in the Publix imported cheese aisle, but cheese is better than cheesecake, sugar or chocolate right? I will probably wind up with an average of 35 points per day when my WW week ends MOnday night. My daily limit is 30 points but you get an extra 35 for the seven day period. So basically if you divide up the extras, it comes out ok. Basically one point = approximately 50 calories so I'm getting about 1700 per day.

For the new week which begins Tuesday I'd like to focus on not using the extra 35 weekly points at all. This means I gotta keep my daily count at no more than 30, or if I go over one day, I have to cut back that much on the next.

Let's hope another two pounds comes off by Tuesday morning. I jumped on the scale Saturday morning and I had lost 1.7 pounds BUT...that's not my weigh day so I have to wait.

What are my weaknesses? Things I have to work on? Here are this weeks' goals.

1) Taking breaks at work and doing at least ten minutes walks on those breaks 2-3 times a day.
2) Snacking---be careful! Stay away from starches and sugars, eat more fruit or drink water when hungry!
3) Plenty of sleep...go to bed at 9 pm even on study nights.
4) Switch from International Delight French Vanilla Creamer in regular coffee at work to french vanilla flavored coffee and plain carnation coffeemate creamer which is much less in sugar and calories
5) Eat everything I bring with my lunch--no skimping!
6) Stick to the 30 points per day.

Wish me luck.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

How Florida voted in the bailout bill...

Here ya go folks, want to know which one of your Reps and Senators voted for and against it?

Straight from Project Vote Smart at http://www.votesmart.org/

Senators:

FL Jr Sen. Melquiades Martinez Republican Y
FL Sr Sen. Bill Nelson Sr. Democratic N

Representatives:

FL 1 Rep. Jeff Miller Republican N
FL 2 Rep. Allen Boyd Jr. Democratic Y
FL 3 Rep. Corrine Brown Democratic Y
FL 4 Rep. Ander Crenshaw Republican Y
FL 5 Rep. Virginia Brown-Waite Republican N
FL 6 Rep. Clifford Stearns Republican N
FL 7 Rep. John Mica Republican N
FL 8 Rep. Ric Keller Republican N
FL 9 Rep. Gus Michael Bilirakis Republican N
FL 10 Rep. C. W. Bill Young Republican N
FL 11 Rep. Kathy Castor Democratic N
FL 12 Rep. Adam Putnam Republican Y
FL 13 Rep. Vern Buchanan Republican N
FL 14 Rep. Connie Mack IV Republican N
FL 15 Rep. David Weldon Republican Y
FL 16 Rep. Tim Mahoney Democratic Y
FL 17 Rep. Kendrick Meek Sr. Democratic Y
FL 18 Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen Republican N
FL 19 Rep. Robert Wexler Democratic Y
FL 20 Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz Democratic Y
FL 21 Rep. Lincoln Diaz-Balart Republican N
FL 22 Rep. Ron Klein Democratic Y
FL 23 Rep. Alcee Hastings Sr. Democratic Y
FL 24 Rep. Tom Feeney Republican N
FL 25 Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart Republican N


I hope you "Y" folks enjoy what time you have left because you're probably not going to be elected next time around.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

AIG screwing the American people...

OMG

AIG just pissed away a shit pot load of money, about $440,000 on a rather expensive and luxurious California retreat for its executives. It included spa treatments, golf, banquets, and other goodies.

And that was just a few days after the federal government gave them $85 billion bailout. Now, ABC news just reported they have given AIG another $38 billion.

People...PEOPLE...wake the hell up. Time to get on the phone or email with your elected official and tell them that they just lost your vote.

Every son of a bitch who voted for it should be OUT. I'm sorry but because McCain voted for it, I decided not to vote for him. Notice I removed my endorsement of him on my blog? Yep, it was a dealbreaker for me.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

woo hoo!

I am thrilled, what I'm doing is working. I've lost two pounds since last week. Not only is it the hypnosis and the mantra I keep repeating "I am becoming thinner and more attractively healthy every day" but I'm just not snacking like I used to. I already feel better.

Keep it up!

Monday, October 06, 2008

I chose a fourth amendment issue...

Gosh why does coming up with an idea for a research paper have to be so time consuming? In the American Law course, I wanted to write about something relevant. Anything Constitution-related is very relevant. I'm a huge supporter of the work of the IJ (Institute for Justice...www.ij.org) and four years ago I did a paper on eminent domain abuse and this time I'm going to focus on the fourth amendment violations in rental inspections. I'm citing three cases, "Brumberg v. City of Marietta", "Black v. Village of Park Forest", and "Stewart v. City of Red Wing". Basically we have cities whose officials passed ordnances calling for mandatory inspections of rental properties or suffer the consequences---which for landlords meant they would be refused rental licenses, which would result in lost revenue from property that would not be rentable and/or tenants who would be forced onto the streets with hardly any notice. Anyway, it was a clear violation of the fourth amendment with "unreasonable search"...

Gotta love the government eh?

Anyway, the cases are already passed, but they are so interesting and I think the precedent they set is important.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Pork, pork and more pork added to senate bill...

Tonight I was listening to the Savage Nation and Mike was playing exerpts of Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein's speeches on the Senate Floor. They've been discussing the "Financial Markets Bill" and Boxer was talking about how thrilled she is that they're including $100 billion for mental health care, tax breaks, aid to rural schools (latter added by republicans)....... Then you've got Dianne Feinstein talking about high speed rail for the state of California being included in the bill, as well as a prohibition on cell phones on trains...and a bunch of other crap.

Feinstein said her office received 91,000 phone calls and emails from her state of California and 85,000 of them were opposed to the measure, but that there is a great deal of confusion, and people don't understand.

Don't understand? Well no wonder, when this is supposed to bail out Wall Street so Main Street (I hate that phrase) can start moving again, and we're throwing in money for mental health care, a high speed rail for the state of California, aid to rural schools, and all this other crap.

Yeah the people don't understand what all this SHIT (aka pork) has to do with the bailout or the ailing economy.

Yeah Barbara why don't you explain it to us since we're so friggin stupid.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Great news!

One of my PhD students is taking the kitties for the two years! Finally, a solution and everyone is happy that Saffie and Chloe will have a home till their parents get back from England!

Monday, September 29, 2008

One of my students finished his PhD and he was offered a prestigious opportunity to teach and do research at a University in England for about to years and it's a chance he can't pass up. He and his new wife are moving there next week. He's got two adorable cats, one is 10 and one is 6 whom he's had for several years and it's just breaking their hearts they can't take them. It costs $2,000 per cat plus they will be in quarantime for six months each wary. I am trying to help them find someone to foster them for two years and then they'll take them back when they return to the US.

So far no takers...

Saturday, September 27, 2008

One of the strangest dreams yet....though not the strangest.

The dream....

I worked late and was heading to my parents house when I noticed traffic on the lonely country highway was backed up quite a bit. Apparently men had stopped traffic both ways and were robbing people. A man got out of his vehicle and I guess wouldn't submit to the robbery and he was shot in the head. Somehow I keep thinking "I have to protect my money" but I have nowhere to hide it. Eventually I am walking that road, near the woods though so I am not seen. There's a woman walking and she is sick and I tell her to come with me. I remember very clearly I terrified of being murdered by these perps. I think that at one point I had a gun to my head but I don't remember too well. I do remember I was angry that these men were threatening people so.

Next thing I know I am at my parents house, it is quiet, lights are on. This woman there tells me she will let me live if I pay her. But I get away from her, I want to kill her. I go into their bedroom and both of my parents are dead. No blood, but there's what appears to be a small hole in each of their right temples. They are laying there not moving. I am sobbing, I go to my dad's nightstand to find his gun but I can't seem to get the damn thing to fire. Finally I go over to my parents and leaning over and dad opens one eye, he's alive. He shows me where his .357 Magnum is. I go over to the nightstand, get it out, it's got this big barrel that I have to hold (it's a flexible barrel, imagine that??) and I am holding it and I begin shooting, it's an automatic and I'm shooting holes in all the walls because there are three bad guys there, two men and a woman and I am doing everything I can to kill them. My mom and dad both wake up, they are not injured, the bullets do not hit their brain, so they are ok. They are up now.

I run outside and am shooting everything in sight and hitting it too. I see their next door neighbor Butch and I yell to him to call the police. He does then he comes over and helps me figure out what happend. I think I killed the perps though I can't find their bodies.

Next thing I know my parents are ok, my sister is there. Then I am in the town near where my parents live, I am on the street with my hands full and need a ride. I see the sheriff and ask him for a ride but he says "we're sending a car for your family to take them home" (but they were already home!) and so I began walking. I knew they would want to talk to me about what happened.

Next thing I remember, I am talking to a friend, whom I work with. We're walking down the street and he tells me about this invasion from Granada and some other place and I said yes that happened at my house. And he's listening to this story as we're walking down the street. He's mortified over what I told him. Then this Asian girl we're walking with is pulled up into the trees by these guys and they are going to beat her and murder her. We eventually pull her out of the tree. Next thing I know we're at a ceremony honoring someone because there are a bunch of police there. They're missing this "medal of valor" they want to give to someone in the general public, though I don't know who and I ask this girl I know, she was younger than me back in high school, if she would drive home and get the medal.

This was a horrible dream. My parents murdered? Then alive? I was terrified of being murdered by these thugs? I take my dad's gun and play "Dirty Harriet??"

I didn't eat or drink anything unusual. But I have dreams like this all the time. I'll tell people who know me best "I had the strangest dream last night" and their answer is always "so what else is new".

Friday, September 26, 2008

RIP...

Paul Newman was a great actor, a genuine person and a very caring humanitarian, he will be greatly missed by all of us.

They were so good together...



















Thursday, September 25, 2008

Legally blonde...

Ok, I'm fessin' up, last Saturday night I forced DH to play on his computer in the office while I stayed in the living room and watched Legally Blonde & Legally Blonde 2 and I laughed my ass off during both films. I love Reese Witherspoon, she is so funny.

Now DH refused to watch it, maybe it was the chihuahua in a pink skirt that got to him, I don't know but the movies were so funny, I was laughing out loud. He just kept shaking his head.

I'm sorry but I thought the movies were hilarious!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Not in this lifetime!

I'm going to say it publicly, I am NOT in favor of the government handing the former Chairman & CEO of Goldman Sachs (Henry Paulson--did you know his net worth is some $700 million??) a check for $700 billion to do with it whatever he wants, with no legal recourse or accountability. Especially when Goldman Sachs (among other companies) stands to reap huge rewards from this.

There has to be another way. McCain is attempting to scare the American people by saying there will be no money for banks to lend, homeowners will no longer be able to get loans.

Well, that may be true, for a time anyway but I believe we will survive. This is capitalism, it has its good points and its bad points. We have to let the market dive and clean itself up.

Section Eight of Paulson's bailout plan states:

“Decisions by the Secretary pursuant to the authority of this Act are non-reviewable and committed to agency discretion, and may not be reviewed by any court of law or any administrative agency.”

Hell NO!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Are you kidding?

My thoughts on education...

I believe that higher education is extremely important. That said, not everyone is graduate school material. If you want someone to hold your hand, "give" you grades rather than you earning them, and generally do the work for you, then you don't belong there.

It irritates me to no end when a student whines about graduate school being difficult. HELLO? It's supposed to be!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

$1 trillion of taxpayers money a "significant amount?" Really Mr. President?

Circle Of Debt: The Banking Bailout Explained

(WCCO) The Dow Jones Industrial Average soared almost 368 points Friday. The NASDAQ rose almost 75 points. Investors liked hearing about the biggest government intervention in financial markets since the Great Depresssion.

"We must address the root cause behind much of the instability in our markets: mortgage assets that have lost value during the housing decline and are now restricting the flow of credit. America's economy is facing unprecedented challenges, and we are responding with unprecedented action," said President Bush.

The Bush Administration Friday outlined a plan to buy up bad mortgages from banks so they can start lending again.

In addition, the government will use up to $50 billion from a Depression-era fund to temporarily guarantee money market mutual funds.

The bailout could cost taxpayers $1 trillion.

"We don't want to have what happened back in the Great Depression. We don't want to have people standing in line and losing money," said financial analyst Nicole Middendorf.

That's why the government is planning on spending hundreds of billions of dollars to buy out bad loans. It's the fallout from the sub-prime mortgage crisis.

"Now we have investments are worth nothing and we have to come up with cash to keep the system afloat," said Middendorf.

But just how is the government coming up with that cash?

Middendorf explained.

"I give you some of what I have, and then go to someone else and get money to pay you. That 'someone else' is other countries," she said.

But that foreign lender will want to be paid back with interest, which means Uncle Sam goes back to the taxpayer for the cash.

"We really need to be conscious and aware of where our dollars are going, but we also are going to unfortunately have, probably, taxes increase because we need to have more money coming in to pay for all this," said Middendorf.

President Bush acknowledged that the programs will put a "significant amount of taxpayers' money on the line," but also said he expects the money will eventually be paid back.

Friday, September 19, 2008

So what's a few billion in the whole scheme of things?

Since the bailout is going to cost approximately $2,000 per every man, woman and child in America, let's just all hand over our paychecks for this month and call it even. How's that?

I mean it's not like it's our money anyway right?

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Take it, it's yours...

You know what? I'm thinking of just giving my entire paycheck to the federal government so they can do with it what they want. I mean, shit, I don't need it, right?

I'll just hand it over to them and they can give back to me what they think I need to live on. I mean they're already giving my hard-earned tax dollars away to corporate America and the rest of the world, why don't I just save them the time of deducting it and giving me what's left and I'll just hand it over.

Here Unca Sam, have fun, enjoy, hope all the little people near and far, all the big fat corporate blockheads, and the rest of the world enjoy my little piece of the American Dream.

Friday, September 12, 2008

More mudslinging at Palin...

Ok, I have read through the entire 120 page report and I can't find ANYTHING that supports the story during her term as Mayor, specifically in 1998, Sarah Palin forced rape victims in Wasilla Alaska to pay for their own rape kits.

According to the hundreds of reports out there, Police Chief Duwayne Charles Fannon, halved the budget request in 1997-1998, with a request of $7,298, spending $3,454. However, it seems he began the "victim pays" policy in the 1998-1999 fiscal year. That year, he requested $3,000 but spent only $205.


Well, according to the City of Wasilla's Crime Statistics website at http://www.cityofwasilla.com/index.aspx?page=103

In 1994 there were 8 sexual assaults, in 95 there were 5, in 96 there were 3, in 97 there were 0, in 98 there was 1 and in 99 there was 1.

This would explain the reduction in the budget for services for rape victims. Based on the reduced number of rapes over a period of the years prior to 1998, when estimating their need it would have been only natural to believe they would not need as much money as in previous years. Given there was only one rape, (and not knowing exactly what work was done or what a rape kit costs), that could explain why only $205 was spent that year.

Sarah Palin has plenty of faults but I'm not jumping on the bandwagon and pinning this on her, no way.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Machiavelli

Nicolo Machiavelli (1469-1527) was a political theorist, author, humanist. He wrote a book titled "The Prince" which became a classic in political thought. In that book he wrote of the importance that a Prince be a moral person but that he might also come upon situations where he might need to act what would be percieved as immoral in order to protect the interests of his state. He believed that "necessity" instrumented political decisions which went against normal morality. As leader of the state the prince was responsible for preserving the existence of the state first.

And so it had me thinking...about how that applies in America today. Machiavelli was right. Sometimes leaders are forced to make decisions that may harm the citizens but preserve the existence of the state. Very interesting. Any thoughts?

Also....Machiavelli wrote about liberty and he believed that liberty stemmed directly from the conflict between the classes.

Which makes me wonder, if all citizens were equal, and there were no classes, would there still be liberty?

Monday, September 08, 2008

Just do your job...

It is so damn annoying when I bust my ass to go above and beyond for my students and someone else in another part of campus whose job is to HELP students can't do the same thing. I had a student with a financial aid problem and her counselor sent her back to me saying it was MY error. But I had done NOTHING to her record, I don't even work with financial aid. But twice her counselor blamed it on the student's department.

All this did was waste the student's time and mine.

Fortunately there are many people on campus who work with students, who are more than willing to go the extra mile, I am one of those people. Not everyone one who works with students has that same attitude. Not saying we all don't have bad days occasionally but there are those who do this sort of thing regularly.

I say if you don't want to help students, get a job where you're not in a position that requires you to help them. There are plenty of good people out there who can fill your shoes and nobody will miss you.

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Oh please...

Because they just can't find anything else to bitch about and because they are so upset that such a strong woman with a set of standards who is by the way actually likeable and more in tune with the common folks than oh say their choice for VP (that being Hillary perhaps?), they're still trying to dig up dirt on Sarah Palin. Oh hell who doesn't have skeletons?

First it was her pregnant teenage daughter, then it was her husband's DUI when he was 21, now it's the non-issue that the luxury jet she spoke about in her speech, in which she put on EBAY, never actually sold on EBAY, although McCain had made a statement in passing that it did.

In reality, the jet was placed on Ebay but did not sell, so they pulled it off Ebay, sold it elsewhere. No, no profit was made off of it but if you factor in the depreciation, it might have just made a profit or at least come out even. What is being overlooked by some is the fact that the Governor sold the jet as part of a mucher larger effort to get rid of corruption and unnecessary spending.

And as to McCain's remarks, who knows why he said it was sold on Ebay? Maybe he figured it was and did make a profit?

The people who are pulling this crap out of a hat must be so desperate.

Friday, September 05, 2008

RIP Coasties...

This is a terrible story about a Coast Guard helo which crashed near the Coast Guard Base at Sand Island last night, killing three crew and with a fourth missing. They were conducting maneuvers with one of the patrol boats from the small boat station located at Base Honolulu.

I was stationed at the Base at Sand Island some 21 years ago and it was typical to take the 41's out several times a month for training with the helos from CG Air Station Barbers Point. We'd practice search and rescue maneuvers with the helo crew for several hours, usually at night.

These practice maneuvers are important for they help Coasties fine tune their SAR procedures so that others may be saved.

And now the ones who save lives have lost theirs. So sad.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Key points of McCain speech...

  • I understand who I work for. I don't work for a party.
  • We were elected to change Washington, and we let Washington change us.
  • We believe in low taxes; spending discipline, and open markets. We believe in rewarding hard work and risk takers and letting people keep the fruits of their labor.
  • I will keep taxes low and cut them where I can. My opponent will raise them. I will open new markets to our goods and services. My opponent will close them. I will cut government spending. He will increase it.
  • His plan will force small businesses to cut jobs, reduce wages, and force families into a government run health care system where a bureaucrat stands between you and your doctor.
  • We will drill new wells offshore, and we'll drill them now
  • My grandfather came home from that same war exhausted from the burdens he had borne, and died the next day. In Vietnam, where I formed the closest friendships of my life, some of those friends never came home with me. I hate war. It is terrible beyond imagination.
  • The constant partisan rancor that stops us from solving these problems isn't a cause, it's a symptom. It's what happens when people go to Washington to work for themselves and not you.
  • Russia's leaders, rich with oil wealth and corrupt with power, have rejected democratic ideals and the obligations of a responsible power. They invaded a small, democratic neighbor to gain more control over the world's oil supply, intimidate other neighbors, and further their ambitions of reassembling the Russian empire.
  • I'm not running for president because I think I'm blessed with such personal greatness that history has anointed me to save our country in its hour of need. My country saved me. My country saved me, and I cannot forget it. And I will fight for her for as long as I draw breath, so help me God.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Flashback to Zell Miller...

Do you remember this? Click on part 1 and then part 2 to watch former Georgia Governor & Senator Zell Miller battle with Chris Matthews on Hardball at the 2004 Republican National Convention.

Every time I see this video, I just laugh my ass off!

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Michael Savage pissed me off...

...with his remarks about Sarah Palin. He said she was an insult to women everywhere. He talked about her lack of experience and said American women want a woman (in that position) they can look up to, for instance a woman like Kay Bailey Hutchison. (No offense to Mrs. Hutchison but I prefer a new younger crowd in office). Michael Savage's callers, many of them women, made rude remarks about how Palin should be at home with her children and asking "how will she take care of her children if she is elected?" One woman even called her husband a wimp. Why? Because his wife is governor and he's not? Please! What? Women can't multitask?

HELLO! WOMEN HAVE BEEN MULTITASKING SINCE THE BEGINNING OF TIME!!! Hell, in the old days women who were widowed or abandoned took control of the childrearing, children's education, family finances and even the family business. So don't tell ME women can't do both. They have been doing both since the beginning.

Let's not forget, Sarah Palin isn't the only parent in that family, her husband Todd shares in the parenting responsibilities too. How about some talk about that? In this day and age where we encourage men to be an active part of their children's upbringing, where we encourage a fair sharing of responsibilities in parenting, where more and more men are spending more and more quality time with their children, it seems outrageous that so many are suddenly chastising a woman for her choices to have a career outside the home. Isn't this what we as women have fought for all these years? The chance to have the opportunity to do both, or at least try it?

This outrage about Sarah Palin having children and possibly being VP has me thinking about another VP...Al Gore.....who was just 45 when he was elected Vice President. At that time, his children were 20, 16, 14, and 11. Not once did we hear a peep about that. Why is that you ask? Oh that's because Tipper was at home caring for the children. Actually who really cared for the children? Did the school age children have a nanny? Did Tipper sit down and help them with their homework? Clean the house? Iron their clothes for school? Who knows? And is it our business? No. For the most part, the Gore children have turned out pretty good and it's none of our business how that happened.

I think some of the angst about Sarah Palin neglecting her children to run for office comes from the fact that traditionalists still feel that the woman is responsible for the children and should be at home taking care of them. I say if that's the way you want it fine, but don't sit there and make the claim that a woman cannot be a mother AND Vice President of the United States.

The bitching and whining about Governor Palin is getting old now. On one hand we've got Dems whining about Governor Palin's daughter being pregnant at 17 (whose business is it of ours and how is it even relevent to the campaign?) and on the other hand we've got Republicans complaining that either she doesn't have enough experience or that she should be home with her children instead. I'm tired of hearing that, talk about setting women back a few centuries? Home with the children? Sure, if that's what you want. But if Sarah Palin can do both, I say good for her.

How much experience do we want? Being a senator or representative does not automatically make one a good candidate for Vice President or even President. If anyone has the qualifications for the those offices I would say a Governor does. A Governor has the executive experience, the leadership abilities and the know-how to lead people, to make decisions that get the job done. Now Sarah Palin has only been Governor for a year and nine months but apparently the people of Alaska like her, and for a reason. I don't know what kind of Vice President she will make, but like Governor Palin, I too am asking the question "what does the Vice President do?" considering that in eight years we haven't seen much of Cheney and prior to that what in hell did Al Gore do for eight years?

It takes time to groom a person for the Presidency. No position in the world is like that of the US President and I don't think you can adequately prepare anyone for the office. Even John McCain, should he be elected, with all his years experience in the Senate won't prepare him for what lies ahead. So why are we worried about Sarah Palin? Are we really concerned that something might happen to John McCain if he's elected and she won't have enough experience to take over for him? How many Vice Presidents in this country have had to take over after something happened to the President? Plenty of them.

Despite what Michael Savage says about women wanting to vote for someone they can look up to, I don't think that's important. What we women want is what men want, someone honest with integrity and values, with America's best interests at heart, someone who is firm but fair, tough when necessary, a good negotiator, listener and not afraid to entertain new ideas and not afraid to stand up for what they believe in, even if it costs them.

I feel that Sarah Palin, being just a few years older than me, probably represents my generation more than anyone else who is running for office and frankly, it's my generation that is going to have to figure out how to solve the problems set before us. With our baby boomer parents retiring, it's now up to their children to take over. And right now, what we have is a mess.

Governor Palin is young, fresh and vibrant, she's what we NEED. Forget the two major things you disagree with her on for a moment (which for many is her stance on abortion and gay marriage). She's educated and smart, she has a strong marriage, a large family, a special needs child, a pregnant teenage daughter, and a soldier son (meaning...she's just like any other American). She didn't grow up with a silver spoon in her mouth, she went from small town mayor to Governor, which is NOT easy for someone without years of experience in the political arena. She is smart and likeable a good negotiator but not afraid to tangle with the big boys when necessary. She's also not a Washington insider, which in my opinion should be a HUGE plus on her part. When you take away the fact that she hasn't spent half her life in Congress like everyone else, you sort of have to ask yourself what's the problem here?

Sure I disagree with her stance on a few things but hell I can't remember one single politician in all my years of voting that didn't have some stance I disagreed with. I'm not a single issue voter, I vote for the overall package and in my book, Sarah Palin is the real deal. I only wish she were running for President and not McCain but hopefully if he wins, she will balance him out, they will run a good, honest and fiscally responsible administration keeping America's best interests at heart.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Gustav


I am very happy to see that the Gulf Coast local and state governments as well as the PEOPLE in those areas are taking heed and evacuating the areas about to be hit by Gustav. I am thrilled that New Orleans is handling this evacuation so well. Wrist bracelets with contact info to keep people and their families and pets together, pet carriers available for evacuees, the ability to take your pets with you in the evacuation, this whole thing as it looks now is being handled so much better than with Katrina.

I feel for all the people who will lose their homes (and businesses) in this storm and make no mistake many will lose them and have to start over. Some people on the Gulf Coast are STILL living in FEMA housing, they haven't even rebuilt yet. I cannot even imagine what it is like to have to start all over again. A lot of people have no insurance or do not have enough insurance and for those who have enough insurance, it still doesn't make the loss any less devastating. I wish by some miracle the storm would get weaker and just bring some rain and a little wind, but nothing like what they are predicting. Sadly though, it looks like it's going to be pretty devastating.

I've got a friend down in that area, Jim, who is retired Coast Guard, and his lovely wife Gwen. They spend their retired years taking care of animals in the shelters. They lost their home in Slidell in Katrina and the shelter was lost too. They stayed behind last time to care for the animals, now they are evacuating, the animals are going too. It took them forever to rebuild and I worry they will lose their home and the shelter yet again. Then there's Andi and her family in Mobile, I hope they'll be ok.

Let's all think positive thoughts for the folks in path of this thing.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Since we're talking Joan Crawford here...

This video is just so good. Whoever put this together is a genius! Thank goodness for Youtube eh?

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Why?

Why is it every time I hear Hillary Clinton speak, it reminds me of...well...maybe you better click here because it's really the only way to explain it.

But here's a hint...

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Can someone tell me how I am disadvantaged?

One of the women at the DNC today (I heard her but can't remember who it was right off hand) made a speech and she said there are policies in place which hurt working women and families. Can anyone tell me what those policies are? Because frankly, as a working woman I don't feel disadvantaged. I feel I have many opportunities, not because I am a woman but because I live in America.

Here are some of the many women I know....you tell me if they sound disadvantaged. And oh by the way none of these women are rich, none come from wealthy families, none are married to wealthy men, none have famous rich connections. What they did, they did on their own for themselves, by themselves, with moral support from family and friends of course.

Deb has a Master's degree and a great job, she's intelligent and successful and yearns to eventually start her own business. She also raised a fantastic son.

Jeanette was in the Air Force for four years, she eventually married and she has a great job where she works the hours she wants to work!

Connie doesn't have a college degree but she started young doing hair, eventually she worked in a salon and for the past decade she has owned her own salon and is doing great.

Jennifer has a Masters Degree and is currently teaching economics to undergraduate students.

Nicole has a Bachelor's degree and is a police officer.

Kaley is a nurse making great money and working on her Masters Degree.

Cindy is a highly trained nurse who has worked in many places around the country as part of the Traveling Nurse program.

Valarie has a college degree, works in public relations and raises two kids while being married to a military man.

Samantha Alice enlisted in the Army in her thirties and is working on getting her Masters Degree and counseling soldiers.

Kelly is a single mom working on her Bachelor's degree while raising some awesome kids.

Sara finished her Masters degree and is working as a civilian for the US Navy.

Diana is a retired college professor, married with children and grandchildren, who works in advocacy fighting for autism awareness as well as many other worthy causes.

My mom didn't go to college, she made choices that took her in another direction. You may sometimes hear her say she wished she'd gone to college but you'll never hear her say she regrets her decisions which were getting married and taking care of dad and three kids!

My sister hasn't been to college and don't know if she will ever make it and she has struggled through many life altering events and many jobs, but you will never hear her blame her struggles on someone else, she always says it's because of the choices she made.

Susan is a stay at home mom for the past 20 years, has three great kids and not a day goes by she isn't happy about the choice she made in taking care of her family first.

Stephanie is a former military wife, stay at home mom with four kids (one is special needs), a husband and she's just begun her own photography business from home.

One of my cousins, Deb, is older than me by two years, she has a husband and three teenage children, and she is back in school just like me, working on her Bachelor's degree and wants to be a teacher.


I know many who have chosen to be stay at home moms because that was more important to them than a career outside the home. I know women who are retired who never went to college (but wished they had) but never do I hear them say it's someone else's fault. I also know women who don't have kids who are in the workforce and love what they do. I know women who made the choice to take care of their families early and when the kids were older, the moms went back to school or to work or started their own business.

I know a lot of women (as you do) who might say "I wish I'd done this" or "I wish I'd done that" I mean who of us hasn't said that? We're only human for crying out loud--every decision can't be perfect. But smart women don't blame their situation on someone else because when it comes down to it, with some exceptions, most of us have the ability to make our own choices and we are responsible for our actions and are capable of understanding the consequences.

So for any highly intelligent, college educated woman, such as the old tired broads at the DNC, to talk about women being disadvantaged in America, I find it highly offensive. The women who came before us gave great sacrifices to bring change that made our lives so much easier today, we owe them by not whining and complaining about how men are holding us back.

If you're being held back, if you feel disadvantaged, it's your own damn fault.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

My pal Jennifer and I worked late Thursday evening, I on last minute preparations for the barrage of new grad students and she on her course syllabi and preparation for teaching yet another few hundred clueless undergrads beginning Monday. We had a nice talk, one which led to our futures and what to do with our lives. She finished her MS and is lecturing now, to undergrads and she said she never realized how hard teaching is, and of course the conversation swayed towards my direction and the big question about what I'm going to do with my life.

I told Jenn about the Institute for Justice also known as IJ (www.ij.org) and the great work the organization does on behalf of the American people. If you don't know what they're about, you should because one of these days you might need them. The IJ is the only non-proft libertarian public interest law firm in the United States.

IJ's mission: "we engage in cutting-edge litigation and advocacy both in the courts of law and in the court of public opinion on behalf of individuals whose most basic rights are denied by the government--like the right to earn an honest living, private property rights, and the right to free speech, especially in the areas of commercial and Internet speech. As Wired magazine said, the Institute for Justice “helps individuals subject to wacky government regulations.”

Their areas of expertise:

Economic liberty - challenges to occupational licensing regulations and government-created monopolies

School choice - defending parents’ use of vouchers and tax credits

Property rights - defending against unjustified takings of private property by the government in such areas as eminent domain abuse and civil forfeiture

Free speech - defending the right to speak about politics and commerce.

That's the kind of organization I'd love to work for because what they do is good, honest, decent work. They work on behalf of Americans for the cause of freedom. What could be better? It is a shame that in this country we have to have organizations that work to protect us from constitutional abuses by government but sadly, the larger the government, the more frequent the abuses. I first learned about IJ watching 60 Minutes several years ago when they were running the story about the eminent domain abuse cases in Connecticut and Ohio, just to name a few. I wrote a research paper about eminent domain abuse and IJ was a fountain of information for me. After that I became a huge fan of IJ because of the kind of work they do to help their fellow Americans.

If I ever went to law school it would be to do work like this, what great research and litigation skills one would need. Jenn thinks I'd make a great "mouthpiece" LOL yeah I guess I would eh? But even if I just go to grad school and specialize in an area of history, I think I'll include some kind of Constitutional studies too. I think it's important to understand not just the who, what, when and how but also the WHY.

Come Monday I'll be starting three more courses and ending my final term of my first two years of college, which has actually taken me four years, but it's been well worth it. I hope I can kick ass at UF in January as much as I've kicked ass these last four years.