The Watering Hole: September 30, 2011 — More pictures!

The ocean produced some gorgeous crashing waves yesterday, and we were blessed with a crystal clear day.  This is part of Boiler Bay…

The waves were beating the rocks into submission…

And this is why it’s called Boiler Bay…

Just look at that swirling action…the blue of the sky and ocean…awesome.

Photos by Zooey

This is our daily open thread — and in case you didn’t know – it’s Friday!!!!

The Watering Hole ~ Thursday, September 29, 2011: Dylan Ratigan – Mad as Hell!!

Dylan Ratigan is mad as hell, and he’s not going to take it any more!!

YouTube:

In a conversation with a show panel about the country’s debt and credit downgrade, MSNBC’s Dylan Ratigan passionately calls both the Democratic and Republican economic plans, “reckless, irresponsible and stupid.”

The following day Dylan Ratigan explained his tirade:

Dylan Ratigan is now attempting to ‘build a digital wave‘ to get the money out of politics. Yesterday he announced the formation of a petition to get money out of our political system, and a draft amendment to the Constitution that will do it.

Until we get money out we can’t address the corrupt structures that prevail over health, energy, education, defense, trade and banking. And until we do that we will suffer massive poverty, resource loss, anger and frustration. But we can harness all of that to alter the structure through simple singular focus, modern and traditional media, the web and our own personal resolve.

You can read and sign the petition here at GET MONEY OUT.

This is our quicky daily open thread — Discuss!

The Watering Hole: Wednesday, September 28, 2011: It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere!

It’s nearly 11:00 p.m. and I’m finally wrapping up work for the day. But, what the heck, it’s five o’clock somewhere!

In my profession, it’s always “places to go, people to sue.” Some of us wear the white hats, some wear the black hats. Some change hats as circumstances dictate. For me, I slay dragons…with the pen. ‘Tis mighter than the sword, after all.

Of course, slaying dragons is just a figure of speech. Those who believe in Dragon Magick aren’t exactly into seeing those magnificent beasties killed.

“I read the news today, oh boy…about a lucky man who made the grade.” Nothing’s changed much in the past 50 or so years since that song came out. Gotten uglier on the political scene, that’s for sure. But I wonder, is it really uglier? What about the castle intrigues of Medieval times? Those machinations that inspired Machieavelli to write “The Prince”…a primer on how to rule and keep one’s head for as long as possible, always knowing that someone, sooner or latter, would be plotting to remove it for you. Are things uglier now, or are we just seeing those machinations…all that dirty laundry…aired in public?

Actually, I think it’s both. And I think as ugly as things are, we’re only seeing the tip of the iceberg.

The other morning, I stepped outside at dawn, and a mockingbird flew to a nearby tree and began to serenade me. Soon a hummingbird approached and lit on a branch near the mockingbird, listening. A hummingbird…busy as those little birds are, always flitting from flower to flower, stopped, just to listen to the music for awhile.

There’s a lesson in that for all of us.

THIS IS OUR OPEN THREAD. CARE TO SHARE ANY LIFE’S LESSONS YOU’VE LEARNED?

where’s Cuervo?

Hard to tell from this photo, but the conveyance is intriguing…Oil rig? Left over military hardware? Imperial Star Cruiser?

In between Vegas and Reno, even the cattle warnings have this floor show strut…

Found enough water to float the kayak, and had a companion this afternoon… any guesses? (It’s not a Labrador retriever…)

The Watering Hole: September 27, 2011 — Yaquina Bay Bridge

Photo by Zooey

The Yaquina Bay Bridge is an arch bridge that spans Yaquina Bay south of Newport, Oregon. It is one of the most recognizable of the U.S. Route 101 bridges designed by Conde McCullough.

The bridge opened on September 6, 1936, at a cost of $1,301,016. A total of 220 people worked to pour 30,000 cubic yards (23,000 m³) of concrete and fabricate 3,100 tons of steel.

The main span is flanked by identical 350 ft (107 m) steel arches. The rest of the structure is constructed of reinforced concrete.  One concrete deck girder forms the northern approach, and a series of 5 arches makes up the southern part of the bridge.

This is our quicky daily open thread — Discuss!

Lady Gaga pays tribute to Jamey Rodemeyer

At the iHeartRadio Music Festival in Las Vegas, Lady Gaga gave a powerful performance of her song “Hair” in honor of Jamey Rodemeyer, the 14-year-old boy who recently took his life after suffering years of bullying.

From Huffington Post:

Before she sang “Hair,” Lady Gaga told the crowd, “I wrote this record about how your identity is really all you’ve got when you’re in school … so tonight, Jamey, I know you’re up there looking at us, and you’re not a victim. You’re a lesson to all of us.”

As seen in the YouTube video below, mid-song she stops and says bullying is for losers.

Lady Gaga has made a vow to make bullying illegal.

The Watering Hole: September 24 – Join or Die

Ben Franklin, 1754

Benjamin Franklin, in 1754, used a snake to illustrate a point. He sketched, carved, and published the first known political cartoon in an American newspaper. It was the image of a snake cut into eight sections. The sections represented the individual colonies and the curves of the snake suggested the coastline. New England was combined into one section as the head of the snake. South Carolina was at the tail.

It was a plea for unity in defending the colonies during the French and Indian War. It played off a common superstition of the time: a snake that had been cut into pieces could come back to life if before sunset you joined the sections together.

Later, with the signing of The Declaration of Independence he said "We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately."

While separated by more then 20 years, these two sentiments illustrate of the thoughts and sympathies of the founding fathers beyond mere independence.

After the end of the war, a loose Confederacy was founded and the result was a microcosm of the situation in Europe at the same period. The Constitutional Convention (also known as the Philadelphia Convention, the Federal Convention, or the Grand Convention at Philadelphia) was called to rectify this situation. Franklin served as a delegate from Pennsylvania to the convention. The purpose of the convention was to eliminate the legal and trade barriers that existed in the Confederacy. The result was a federation of the 13 states – The United States.

Franklin was a harbinger of this federation. He, along with the other founding fathers, wanted to create a nation with common bonds between its parts. The rights were spelled out for each of the states that made up the federation.

Current feelings of certain groups today seem to say that these objectives for a common bond no longer apply. They try to link their aims as if they were the basis for the Revolution and the Constitutional Convention. They are asking for neither.

This is our Open Thread. What are do you think? The founding fathers want to know!

Music Night, Fall Equinox Version

I’m embarrassed to admit it, but I discovered Big Star very late in the game. In a very brief period at the beginning of the 70s, Big Star and its founder, Alex Chilton, laid the groundwork for what was eventually labeled Alternative Music. A lot of musicians have acknowledged being inspired and influenced by the band–musicians obviously being tapped into a different network than Gummitch. And a lot of musicians have done covers of Big Star tunes, including a particular favorite of mine, Thirteen. Since our corporate masters have prevented me from properly offering the band itself, here is one damn good version (musicians who were to play with Chilton 20 years after the band broke up) and one, um, interesting version.

The Watering Hole: September 23, 2011 — Schweddy Balls

Yummmm...

A bunch of Moms have their panties in a twist over the latest Ben & Jerry’s delicious creation of yumminess — Schweddy Balls.

Vanilla ice cream with a hint of rum & loaded with fudge-covered rum & malt balls.

Apparently, Schweddy Balls are a threat to the innocence of their little darlings.  Methinks these ladies haven’t heard their special boys and girls talking among themselves on the school yard.

Hey ladies, thanks for putting up a fuss about this new Ben & Jerry’s flavor — I hadn’t heard of it!

So what do you think about the fuss?  Personally, I can’t wait to get some Schweddy Balls in my mouth.  ;)

This is our Friday open thread — ice cream anyone?

Tonight’s GOP Debate in Orlando, Florida

From ABC’s World News:

The GOP candidates will take the stage at the Fox News/Google debate in Orlando this evening for the second Florida debate in two weeks and the importance of the Sunshine State is roaring into focus. If the election remains the two-man race it has been since Texas Gov. Rick Perry entered last month, Florida could be a tiebreaker and cement either former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney or Perry as the nominee.

If Perry takes Iowa and South Carolina, states with large conservative and evangelical bases, while Romney wins New Hampshire, a state that has become his firewall and where he owns a home, and Nevada, a state he won in 2008 that has a large Mormon population, then it most likely will all come down to Florida, analysts say.

Joining tonight’s debate is GOP candidate Gary Johnson, who served as governor of New Mexico from 1995 to 2002 . Missing from tonight’s debate, of course, is non-candidate, can’t-stand-not-being-the-center-of-attention, quitter and narcissistic blowhard Sarah Palin.

The debate is being televised on Fox Noise, and begins at 6:00 PST, 9:00 ET. For a run-down on all of tonight’s candidates, go here. You can also watch the live-stream here.

Join TheZoo as we join the fun and live-blog tonight’s debate.

Elizabeth Warren on Debt Crisis, Fair Taxation

This woman is so impressive. It’s so refreshing to listen to someone running for office that makes sense and is not just spouting platitudes and talking points. She speaks to everyone, for everyone.

“You built a factory out there? Good for you. But I want to be clear: you moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for; you hired workers the rest of us paid to educate; you were safe in your factory because of police forces and fire forces that the rest of us paid for. You didn’t have to worry that marauding bands would come and seize everything at your factory, and hire someone to protect against this, because of the work the rest of us did.

“Now look, you built a factory and it turned into something terrific, or a great idea? God bless. Keep a big hunk of it. But part of the underlying social contract is you take a hunk of that and pay forward for the next kid who comes along.”

This race is one to watch.