Friday, June 24, 2005


Well, another day. In the past 24 hours I've responded to a neighbor's home to see about her bee sting ( I have my own EMT bag at home), and gone to see about a diabetic who parked her car in an intersection when she got low on sugar. All's well that ends well, and both did. We have a wonderful emergency response system here in the U.S., which makes me sad to remember what it's like when a truck full of 12 passengers crashes on a rural mountain road in Haiti when the semi-existent brakes fail. We get fast, top-notch care, they get almost nothing. We live, they die when they probably would have lived. Just one more reason to say it's great to have been accidentally born in America.

Today brought good news that NPR's funding won't get cut. It's the only quality radio out there, and of course the GOP right doesn't like it because it tells the truth too often. I listen to it daily, and most appreciate it when I'm hiking on the Appalachian's almost always available, and it must be a godsend to people in rural areas. Information and culture - two things the GOP right just doesn't understand. But popular uprising, including my two emails to House members,
seems to have killed the cuts. Now we need to uproot the political hacks that Bush has installed in the Public Broadcasting leadership. GWB's undeveloped intellect has again proved itself - there is nothing like the shitstorm created when the voice of concerned citizens and sometime critics is jeopardized by crude silencing tactics!

But I have to give young George a kudo for his stance on nuclear power. For far too many years the simple-minded fear-filled folks in our great democracy have responded to the cries of enviro-wackos to put the kibosh on new nuclear plants, while other civilized countries have built a lot of them. We need to put safe plants on line ASAP to get our power costs down and our supply of electricity assurred while we reduce pollution from coal and oil plants. With the price of oil going up fast, we had better get moving!

Thomas Friedman has got it right in his new book "The World is Flat". I only read the first two or three chapters, since the premise is easy to understand and prove from other facts. If only GWB could read! (Did you hear him call his guest "a piece of work" on TV the other day - what a goof!) Anyway, we need education reform (like, hey, keep the goofballs in school by force, throw money at the more gifed ones), and we need a sane energy policy that pushes conservation, new sources, and full-blown exploration. You know, I don't give a hoot about the Florida coastal residents who don't want to look at drilling towers...everyone's got to put their nickel in the pot! When the rainy day comes we will be sorry if we haven't gone all out for energy and education.

So, tomorrow I'll use a lot of gasoline to drive to North Carolina where I'll buy a second home - one that I will perhaps live in sometime. For now, New York is OK, but the taxes are crazy and the corruption stinks like pig manure. Governor Pataki is not presidential material because he can't spell the word "reform" and his major expertise is in spending "off-the-books" money. I will get out of here when the stink gets too bad!

It's Friday, so that means dinner out. Time to sign off, get the good witch, and bite into some of the best Italian food in the world - Roncone's in Rochester, NY. Thank God they have re-opened! Bye now.

Friday, June 17, 2005

I'm Bushed!

I was sore at the time of my last post, sore from hiking the AT and sore at Bush. The hiking soreness is slowly getting better, but the Bush soreness gets worse.

It's hard to believe that a leader can be so consistently and publically wrong as is GWB! I don't think he "disassembles" (dissembles), I just think he's a well-meaning dumb guy who just happens to be president of the United States. So this week the Terry Shaivo autopsy comes out proving that all the right-wing hullabaloo was just hot air...the only true statement was Tom Delay's, where he claimed Terry was just as alive as he is! Then the updated information about global warming, showing conclusively that Republican reluctance to accept the scientific facts has put all of us back for the long term. We need to get serious about reducing energy usage and greenhouse emissions, and we need to be in the forefront of getting all other countries to follow on this important issue for our kids. Then, of course, we sadly learned of many more Iraq casualties this week, more than two years after the "cakewalk" and "mission accomplished". You just got to believe there was a more effective way to deal with the Saddam problem, but the train left the station on its way to Chaos a long time ago. Thank goodness for elections! One has to believe that GWB, his staff goofballs and their allies in congress will be history sooner rather than later. They have certainly earned the "boot".

One last scream relating to politics - the NPR matter. Cutting NPR's funding while the right wing has pretty much purchased the public airwaves is a scandal! Yes, many of NPR's in-house people are center and left leaning, as are personalities like Garrison Keillor. But many conservatives also get their voice on programs like All Things Considered, Science Friday, and others...voice that liberals never get on trash like Rush Limbaugh and Michael Savage. Perhaps silencing critics is GWB's idea of democracy (Iran is a good model), but this guy is furious. Strange behavior for a life-long Christian Republican MBA like me!

On the Democrat side, another goofball congressman is all exercised about the four year old boy who died (sadly) at Disney World. He wants lots more regulation. Typical of democrats - one death in 8 million riders and we have a big problem for national government to get into! As an EMT I know that strange things happen to susceptible people who appear healthy...that's life. Sometimes I think there needs to be an SAT test for people who run for office...a minimally functioning brain and a little education is not too much to ask, is it?

So, Life Hiker has got his mind cleared about our sad government. On to more mundane matters. A friend who has had a leukemia relapse is home pending another bone marrow transplant - thank heaven for modern medicine! My new grandson just took his first real steps at just under one year of age. We got some rain after a dry spell in upstate New York, just in time for the LPGA golf tournament just down the road. I worked the overnight on the ambulance and got to sleep because nobody needed help on Wednesday night. And yes, my 84 year old mother is married again to a great guy...what a world!

On with the hike of my life...see you next time.