The Watering Hole: Thursday, January 31 – GOP Would Destroy Country to Win Elections

Right Wing Propaganda Has Done Nothing But Incite Fear and Hated of All Americans 

This is not to say that Republicans promote right-wing extremism with a view towards violence against the government or other Americans, but their support for policies the extremists hold near and dear to their black hearts lends legitimacy to hate movements that are becoming mainstream among conservatives and having deleterious effects on the population.”

Conservative Author Accuses MSNBC Of Suppressing The GOP Vote By Being Mean


Conservative author David Freddoso believes that liberal commentators like Chris Matthews, who attacked conservatives for being racist (among other things), ran a voter suppression campaign against conservatives during the 2012 election. His assertion was that these tactics were used “to tar conservatism and shame conservatives out of participating in politics.

The Watering Hole: Wednesday, January 30 – Mad Men

Cool. Makes you wish for the good old days. Or not? How was it really in the 1960s for:


One in 5 women with children under 6 and nearly one fourth of women whose children were over 16 held paid jobs in the Sixties. Their pay, however, was 60 percent of the male rate.

I guess we are still fighting over that equal pay thing.


Police activity against gay men was rife throughout the 1950s. Many homosexuals were blackmailed, although only a fraction came to the attention of the police. The film Victim of 1961 brought these issues to a mainstream audience. It starred Dirk Bogarde as a repressed, married homosexual taking on the blackmailers who drove his partner to suicide.

African Americans

On May 2, 1964, Dee and Moore were hitchhiking from Meadville, Miss. and were picked up by James Seale. Seale and other Klansmen took the two men into the surrounding Homochitto National Forest and tortured and interrogated them about a possible influx of guns in Franklin County meant to arm blacks against their white attackers. Later the same day, several of the Klansmen put Dee and Moore in the trunk of a car and hauled them across the Louisiana state line, 100 miles north to a spot on the Mississippi River. Then they dumped the men into the river, weighting their bodies down with a jeep engine block and pieces of railroad track.


Despite many efforts to keep the environment clean, some 200 million tons of pollutants were filling the air each year, and clean air in many cities had been replaced by smog. The earth, air, and water were deteriorating as construction of highways, malls, and housing developments caused the destruction of fertile, irreplaceable farmland. Disposal of wastes was another dilemma to be dealt with. Burning could release poisonous gases into the air, and burial could cause harmful decay.

People with Disabilities ?

[…]In the mid-1960s, most of the developmentally disabled patients admitted to large state facilities were children under the age of 12. States offered virtually no support to families hoping to keep their sons and daughters at home and no education for those children living outside institutions.

So Mrs. Burns handed over her son to an institution in Gainesville, Fla., two hours from Daytona Beach, where she and her husband were living at the time. He was screaming and crying and clinging to her legs. She was crying, too. He was just 8 years old.


We have come a long way since I was growing up in rural Bavaria.To me it was not paradise. I welcome the changes that happened since and am glad that I do not have to refight the battles that got us here and which were only started then. Color me paranoid, but I think shows like “Mad Men” set the atmosphere for taking us back where we do not want to go. I enjoy watching, but sometimes I shudder at the thought.

This is our Open Thread. Add your thoughts!

Watering Hole: Tuesday January 29, 2013

So the gun shows in the northeast are becoming a little unpopular. Imagine that.
My take on America is that this is a temporary condition. The public memory lasts about 15 minutes, before Lindsay Lohan takes over the headlines for something to titillate the crowds in the infotainment news.

More interesting is the gun nuts rock solid embrace of weaponry to the point that 200 of the dealers in this show in Harrisburg PA withdrew because the organizer wanted to keep it family-like by keeping assault weapons out of the booths.

This is actually big news because a week long gun show in Pennsyltucky would be considered the ultimate in cold blue steel viewing. Ladies and gentlemen… ready, fire, aim!

The Watering Hole, Monday, January 28th, 2013: Glory and Wonder

“First light at Daytona brought in heavy fog.” Thank you, houseofroberts, for inadvertently (and somewhat circuitously) inspiring this post. Hopefully you’ll enjoy the respite from the perpetual political perturbations in this refreshing pool of nature’s glory and wonder.

"Sunrise on Flowers" - source

“Sunrise on Flowers” – source

After I read house’s comment yesterday morning, I went to to check our forecast. After finding that it was just a chilly 7 degrees out – brrrrr! – I found my inspiration.

Let’s start with, appropriately, Sunrises. The first photo in the group, “…taken by johndhard at Smith Rock State Park in central Oregon…”, brings to mind the style of artist Maxfield Parrish, i.e.:

"Arizona", Maxfield Parris

“Arizona”, Maxfield Parris

Winter Sunrise", Maxfield Parrish

Winter Sunrise”, Maxfield Parrish

Feeling more human now? Then let’s learn a little about clouds, including, but not limited to “Hole-Punch Clouds”, as seen here:
Hole Punch Cloud (source,

Hole Punch Cloud (source,

This is today’s open thread. Well, that was good for me, how about you?

Sunday Roast: January 27, 2012 – Seriously!

It is my favourite of all times:

Get yourself a shoulder of Pork, some veggies, a glass of beer, more beer for yourself and don’t hurry it up, it wants it’s time.

1 l of Chicken Stock
1.5 kgs Pork Shoulder with skin.

(The more fat the better, unfortunately the pigs they breed over here for meat are almost as lean as athletes. You don’t ge a really porky pig anymore and while people think it’s good for your health in my humble opinion it sucks from a yumminess point of view)

3 large white onions
1 small carrot
150 g of celeriac
1 tbsp oil
400 g small potatoes
1 tsp icing sugar
1 tbsp tomato purree concentrated
150 ml red wine
1 laurel leave
1/2 tsp cumin and coriander each
1 clove of garlic sliced
2 slices ginger
pepper freshly gound
1/2-1 tsp lemon skin grated
1-2 tbsp Fleur de Sel

Now you can get going and the process leaves you quite a bit of time between the stages to either prepare side dishes or go on a run to burn off the calories about to hit you 😉

Put the roast into a pan skin side down add the chicken broth and roast in oven at 130°C for 90 minutes.

Dice the veggies (sans the potatoes) and gently roast them in a pan, add icing sugar gently caramelise, add tomato purree and red wine bring to the boil and take to the side.

After 90 minutes take the roast out of the oven, cut the skin (I do squares) add the broth to the veggies and then all the veggies, the potatoes and the sauce go back into the oven pan. Set the roast on top of it and roast for another 90 to 120 minutes at 160°C.

The Finale: Set the oven to 220°C put the roast on the lowest rung of the oven for 20 minutes.

Mix the cumin and coriander, strain sauce in a pot, set veggies aside. Bring gravy to the boil add cumin and coriander reduce for 20 minutes.

Mix fleur de sel and lemon rind. Sprinkle roast with same. Enjoy!

It’s called Sunday Roast isn’t it? So I made you one.

For you it’s an open thread as well, so enjoy!

The Watering Hole, Saturday, January 26, 2013: ALEC and the Ag Gag Bills

We Americans have an amazing ability, bordering on out-and-out hypocrisy, to turn a blind eye toward unpleasant subjects. Nowhere does this talent demonstrate itself more than in the area of how our food is produced. They say that Politics is like sausage-making – you don’t want to see how either one is done. But it’s not just sausages, it’s also the bacon, pork chops & ham, the eggs, wings & thighs, or the milk, butter and cheese. Animal cruelty in the farm business has been a well-documented scourge on our food supply, but thanks to legislation sponsored by ALEC (the very pro-business, conservative American Legislative Exchange Council; ALEC describes themselves as “non-partisan,” but that doesn’t mean they’re non-ideological), documented cases of animal abuse on farms will be a thing of the past. Because it will be illegal to document such abuse.

According to a report published by and, three state legislatures are considering bills to consider any attempt “to investigate animal cruelty, food safety or environmental violations on the corporate-controlled farms that produce the bulk of our meat, eggs and dairy products” as an “act of terrorism.” Now known as “Ag Gag” laws, they were passed in the early 90s in Kansas, Montana, and North Dakota before the term was coined. In the past two years they were joined by Iowa, Missouri, and Utah, and now Nebraska, New Hampshire and Wyoming taking up the issue. (There is hope. Similar legislation failed to pass in seven states: Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Nebraska, New York and Tennessee.

Ag-Gag laws passed 20 years ago were focused more on deterring people from destroying property, or from either stealing animals or setting them free. Today’s ALEC-inspired bills take direct aim at anyone who tries to expose horrific acts of animal cruelty, dangerous animal-handling practices that might lead to food safety issues, or blatant disregard for environmental laws designed to protect waterways from animal waste runoff. In the past, most of those exposes have resulted from undercover investigations of exactly the type Big Ag wants to make illegal.

One bill would make it a crime to fail to report documented animal abuse within 24 hours, despite the fact that multiple abuses, needed to document a pattern of abuse, can take weeks to collect. Another bill would make it a crime to get a job with the “intent to disrupt the normal operations,” and would require animal abuse reports to be filed within 12 hours. The third is designed to prevent activists from exposing animal cruelty at corporate-owned farms, and was introduced by a State Representative planning to build horse slaughterhouses in several states.

From the article (the petitions are only for people who live in those states):

It was public outrage that killed proposed bills in seven states last year. Here are the three latest bills to be introduced, and links to petitions telling lawmakers in New Hampshire, Wyoming and Nebraska to reject the proposed laws:

New Hampshire: HB110

Primary sponsor: Bob Haefner (R) ; Co-sponsors: Majority Leader Steve Shurtleff (D), Rep. Tara Sad (D), Senator Sharon Carson (R), and Bob Odell (R)

This is a 7-line bill written to look as if its main concern is the protection of animals. However the bill would require whistleblowers to report animal abuse and turn over videotapes, photographs and documents within 24 hours or face prosecution – a clear attempt to intimidate and deter people from conducting undercover investigations. Lawmakers know that in order for anyone to prove a pattern of abuse in factory farms, they must document repeated instances of cruelty. A video or photograph of only one instance will be dismissed as a one-time anomaly, which will get the agribusiness company off the hook.

If you live in New Hampshire, sign the petition to stop New Hampshire’s Ag-Gag bill.

Wyoming: HB0126

Co-sponsors: Rep. Sue Wallis (R), Sen. Ogden Driskill (R)

Introduced within weeks after nine workers at a Wyoming factory farm were charged with abuse. The bill’s sponsor, Rep. Sue Wallis, is planning to build horse slaughterhouses in Wyoming and other states. If this bill had been law in 2012, it would have prevented activists from exposing horrific acts of cruelty at Wheatland, WY-based Wyoming Premium Farms, a supplier to Tyson Foods.

If you live in Wyoming, sign the petition to stop Wyoming’s Ag-Gag bill.

Nebraska: LB 204

Introduced by Sen. Tyson Larson (R), Sen. Scott Lautenbaugh (R), and Sen. Ken Schilz (R)

The bill would make it a Class IV felony for any person to obtain employment at an animal facility with the broadly defined “intent to disrupt the normal operations,” It would require animal abuse reports to be filed within 12 hours. Co-sponsor Sen. Launtenbaugh has advocated in the past for horse slaughtering.

If you live in Nebraska, sign the petition to stop Nebraska’s Ag-Gag bill.

This is our daily open thread. Talk about ALEC, animal cruelty, Ag Gag bills or any other topic you choose. And don’t forget to sign the petitions.

Friday Night Music Night – Something New, I Think.

Once again, Nonewhere asked me to get tonight’s music started.  Since this was asked of me at 8:00 am today, I was lost for ideas so I contacted my oldest daughter.  Next week, she and her husband will be seeing this group in concert.  From what I understand, this group is becoming quite popular and that is why I am posting music from these up and coming artists.  For all I know, they may already be famous.

May I present to you, The Lumineers performing Ho Hey:

I think I like this group.  They are fresh and exciting.

Here’s a link to their bio.

Are you listening to any new performers and if so, who are they?  There are so many new artists to choose from.