The Watering Hole, Monday, September 30th, 2013: “UBUNTU”

I know that Wayne posted this on yesterday’s Sunday Roast, but it bears another look – especially in light of the myriad inhumane arguments, diatribes, and lies rising to a cacophonic crescendo over the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, aka “Obamacare.” Just look at so many of the self-serving and ignorant comments on Think Progress’s various threads about the ACA. It’s getting to the point where I think I’d rather live in a more simple society where greed and selfishness are not idealized.

These children put the childish “adults” running/ruining our country to shame. It seems that those who supposedly revere our founding fathers have forgotten one of the earliest ideals of this once-great country, as depicted in the Great Seal of the United States:
Great Seal of the United States

“E Pluribus Unum”: “Out of many, one.”

“Ubuntu”: “I am because we are.” Even those children understand the basic concept of what a workable society should be, and are living it. Why the fuck can’t we?

This is our daily open thread. I’m totally disgusted – how about you?

Sunday Roast: McDonald Creek


Photo by Zach Meier

I was going to call this post “Babbling Brook,” because the water is so low, but since this water actually has a name, I thought I should call it McDonald Creek…because that’s what it’s called.

This is the creek that feeds into Lake McDonald, the largest lake in Glacier National Park.  The water is so clean and crisp, and doesn’t my baby take a great picture of it with my awesome camera?  🙂

This is our daily open thread, and yeah, I totally admit it — I got nothin’ today, so chat among yourselves.

The Watering Hole, Saturday, September 28, 2013: There Are No Death Panels In The ACA

Yesterday, CNN’s Wolf Blitzer (who was actually born Cow Blitzer) tormented his viewers by hosting retiring Minnesota Representative Michele Bachmann for a discussion on The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, commonly known as “Obamacare” by its supporters and “the end of Civilization as we know it” by its detractors. During the conversation (it wasn’t really an “interview” because she pretty much evaded answering just about every single question Blitzer put to her), Bachmann brought up the myth that the ACA has “death panels” in it. And while she also brought up a great number of other lies (I only noticed Blitzer pushing back on one of them, to which she said she would send him the proof; yeah, right), I want to focus on just the one about the death panels. They don’t exist.

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The Watering Hole, Friday September 27 2013; Sangre de Cristo

It’s been a busy week, thanks to a visit by out-of-state family members: sister and her youngest son (turned 52 while here), neither of whom I’d seen for more than ten years. During their visit they of course wanted to ‘see’ some of the Rocky Mountains, so on Wednesday we headed west. We crossed the Front Range Sierra Mojadas, then drove to roughly the center point of the unnamed valley which separates the Front Range from the next range in. There we stopped in the little town of Westcliff to take in one of the most stunning mountain views anywhere on the planet: the Sangre de Cristo Range. The range is made up of a number of 14000 ft jagged peaks, and stretches linearly, south to north, practically from horizon to horizon. Have never run across a photo or photos which give full credit to the magnificence of the Sangre mountainscape — not sure it’s even possible to capture. So, the following photos can only lend an impression to the mind’s eye of but one of the consequences of the Laramide Orogeny, the uplift that formed the Rocky Mountains some 80 million years ago (give or take a few million years).

Below are four photos. The first three, if combined into a single panorama, still represent only some of what one sees while standing in one spot and gazing from north to south. Takes about a 90 degree head turn to take it all in. The fourth photo zooms in on just one of the peaks; if it has a name I have no idea what it might be, but it’s probably close to 14000 ft at its crest.

OK, enough bloviation. Enjoy the view!



OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI only wish the camera had the ability to capture the moment; it didn’t, of course, but with luck at least the concept of reality’s unadulterated AWE is somewhere embedded!


The Watering Hole, Thursday September 26 2013; Those “Deadly Sins” — Alladem

Eugene Robinson sums it all up:

Obamacare’s real danger for the GOP is that it will succeed

. . . Other rich countries provide truly universal care through single-payer systems of various kinds. Obama chose instead to model the Affordable Care Act after a program implemented on the state level by the Republican governor who became Obama’s opponent in the 2012 presidential election. Yes, before Obamacare there was Romneycare, a private-sector, free-market solution designed to be in accord with the GOP’s most hallowed principles.

But in the years between Mitt Romney’s tenure in Massachusetts and his presidential run, the Republican Party lost its way, or perhaps its mind. . . .

For the radical far right, making health care more widely available through the existing network of insurers, most of them for-profit companies, is a giant leap toward godless socialism. . . .

Republicans scream that Obamacare is sure to fail. But what they really fear is that it will succeed.

That’s the reason for all the desperation.

It is no longer within my capability to fully comprehend that which motivates Republicans and Wingnuts — not by any means other than to recall, yet one more time, Dante’s Seven Deadly Sins, each of which does, indeed, seem to most precisely sum up both history’s and today’s darkside (i.e. far right wing) political “ethic.” Those ‘Magnificent Seven’ are, in no particular order: Greed, Lust, Gluttony, Sloth, Envy, Wrath, and Pride. Maximize each and all, and bingo, Tea Party defined with but a single exception, one that Dante and early Christendumb somehow missed (but which Nazi Germany well-understood, as do today’s American Tea Partiers): HATRED, particularly RACIAL Hatred. I suppose too, while were at it, we might as well also add Deadly Sin number nine (which both Tea Partiers and murderers each and all seem to adore): Guns.

Greed, Lust, Gluttony, Sloth, Envy, WrathPride, RACIAL Hatred, and Guns.  America thus (and very sadly) defined.


The Watering Hole, Wednesday, September 25, 2013. Now What?

Now what?!? Some headlines & news stories that ended up on the cutting room floor:

Syria wants to give up its chemical weapons, but Halliburton has a strict “No Returns” policy.

Putin will ease up on Russia’s anti-gay policy during the Olympics, if all male athletes agree to forego wearing shirts.

The Napa California Hot Air Balloon Contest sported a hot air balloon that looked like Rush Limbaugh. No one could tell the difference.

Now that Gay marriages are legal, Gay divorces are on the upswing.

With recreational marijuana now legal in some states, pot sales hit new highs.

Koch-BlockBusters deal falls through.

Netpics picks hit flix.

Ted Cruz picks up endorsement from Sarah Palin, goes down in polls.

Congress shut down for two weeks last summer. No one noticed the difference.

Republicans want to shut down the government if they don’t get their way. Oh, wait. That’s not news.