Friday, September 30, 2011

"America the Beautiful" in CHINA??

BEIJING (AP) — China's state broadcaster isn't saying why the station ran the music to "America the Beautiful" during the gala live broadcast of the country's latest space launch.
Strains of the famed American patriotic tune rang out following the launch of the Tiang Gong-1 experimental space station module late Thursday night.
It wasn't clear why the music had been picked or whether CCTV producers were aware of the origins of the song, whose lyrics include the lines "America! America! God shed His grace on thee."
An operator answering phones at CCTV's Beijing headquarters on Friday said no spokesman was available and calls to the station's international affairs department rang unanswered.

I got that HERE.  Pretty amazing.  And why do you suppose the writer of the article singled out the line above "God shed His grace on thee?"   I found this whole thing fascinating, how about you?

z

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Autumn; my favorite time of the year

I lit a candle with dinner last night;  that tells me it's Autumn and I love it............
Karen has some pictures at her blog you MUST not miss........way better than mind.  Give it a look...you won't be sorry!   Happy Autumn!  Do you have any Autumn stories to share?  Ever been in anything like the red/yellow/orange foliage above? 
z

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Iranian Pastor may die today

HERE is an article that will turn your stomach.   This, from the religion so many like to remind us is 'peaceful'......
And, please, don't anybody remind us that there are Muslims who'd never support this, we all know that.  
Please pray for him.........I hear amazing first-hand stories of how Christianity is growing in Islam and those people need protection.
z

Obama and Bush.....quite a change

THIS is rather surprising, though I've been predicting it.  From the link:

A majority of Americans say Barack Obama is “about the same” or “worse” than George W. Bush as a president, says a new poll out Friday.
Asked to compare President Obama to former President George W. Bush, 56 percent said that Obama was either “worse” (34 percent) or “about the same” (22 percent) than Bush, said a USA Today/Gallup poll.)

Obama performed especially poorly among independents; 67 percent of independent voters said that Obama was about the same or worse than Bush.

What do you suppose has caused this?  Remember when Obama took over and how he ran on "everything is Bush's fault?"   Looks like people are waking up.  Dare we hope? ("hope"...oops...whatever happened to that "hope"?..)  This is QUITE a "change" (oops........:-)

geeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeZ

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

OKTOBERFEST....

Pictures from yesterday, hot off the Munich Press from Ms Z.......enjoy!

Deroy Murdock; agree or disagree?

Obama Lies about the ‘Do-Nothing Congress’
His party, not the Republicans, is the obstacle.


‘This Congress, they are accustomed to doing nothing, and they’re comfortable with doing nothing, and they keep on doing nothing,” President Obama whined at a September 15 Democratic National Committee gathering in a private Washington residence.
Now that his “Blame Bush” hobby horse finally has retired to the glue factory, Obama resorts to pinning America’s woes on the “Do-Nothing Congress.” If only these parliamentarians would stop taking endless lunches, sipping cocktails at Capitol Hill happy hours, and napping at their desks, America might have some chance of returning to normal.

Obama speaks as if the entire Congress were in lock-step Republican opposition to his every initiative. Damn those pesky elephants! Of course, Obama’s rhetoric cynically turns things upside down.
Congress consists of a do-something House of Representatives, run by Republicans, and a do-nothing Senate controlled by Obama’s very own Democrats. Obama evidently believes that if he can keep spouting clever lies and distortions, no one will call him on it. Well, it’s time to do so.
The 112th Congress has been characterized by a very active legislative pace in the Republican House, featuring the passage of many measures designed to revive America’s exhausted economy.
The Democratic Senate, meanwhile, is a much lazier place, where House Republicans’ measures go to die.
The figures bear this out, beyond debate.
Through September 15, the Republican House had been in session for 120 days. The Democratic Senate through the same date had been in session only 115 days.
In terms of recorded votes, the two bodies are as different as Times Square and the Everglades. Through September 15, the GOP House had voted 711 times. Meanwhile, across the same period, the Democratic Senate had only 137 recorded votes. So, the allegedly lethargic GOP legislators whose sloth dooms the nation actually are five times as energetic as their indolent counterparts in the Democratic Senate. 
This distinction might discredit House Republicans if they wasted their time voting on National Apricot Yogurt Month and similar matters of national urgency. In fact, Republicans have approved serious legislation designed to get America moving.
“Our new majority has passed more than a dozen pro-growth measures designed to address the jobs crisis,” Speaker John Boehner and Majority Leader Eric Cantor wrote Obama on September 6. “Aside from repeal of the 1099-reporting requirement in the health care law, however, none of the jobs measures passed by the House to date have been taken up by the Democrat-controlled Senate.”
These have included bills to reduce anti-business regulations, accelerate offshore oil production, and speed the Keystone XL pipeline, which would carry Canadian oil to refineries in Texas. The pipeline alone would create 20,000 jobs.
Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid seems to be in no rush to consider Obama’s American Jobs Act, even though Obama wants it enacted “right now!”
“We’ve got to get rid of some issues first,” Reid said. For now, he is not sure “exactly what I’m going to do yet with the president’s jobs bill,” especially since some of Reid’s own Democrats, such as Mary Landrieu of Louisiana and Jim Webb of Virginia, seem ho-hum about Obama’s $447 billion Stimulus Jr.
While House Republicans adopted a budget last April 15, the Democratic Senate has not approved a budget since April 29, 2009. This Democratic inaction seems to violate the U.S. Congressional Budget Act, which requires passage of an annual budget resolution. Indeed, the Senate rejected Obama’s budget in May by a vote of 0 to 97 — with every Democrat in the chamber voting nay.
Obama can disagree with every piece of paper passed by the GOP House. But when he slyly bashes Republicans by accusing “this Congress” of “doing nothing,” he simply is lying through his teeth. If Obama wants the entire Congress to get something done, he should tell Harry Reid to wake up and do his job.
— New York commentator Deroy Murdock is a nationally syndicated columnist with the Scripps Howard News Service and a media fellow at the Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace at Stanford University.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Bill Whittles it down, so to speak.............as usual

There isn't much I can add to this. Bill Whittles is one of THE nicest guys anybody could meet...and one of the smartest. He was SO poor for a time in his life and it gives him so much credence when talking about poverty in America as he does in this video. I asked him at a function recently if he minded that I post his videos from time to time ..".....do you mind, or do you like your stuff protected..? " He said "Absolutely, please show my videos...thank you for that, and thank you for checking with me; I really appreciate your honesty." Ya, I'll be his fan for life. Especially after THIS:

PLEASE watch and SEND TO FRIENDS...LIBERALS, TOO...they need to see this stuff.

z

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Sunday Faith Blog

I GUARANTEE this will make your Sunday...........who ever heard of THE GREAT BOAT LIFT OF 9/11?  I hadn't.   Please watch till the end;  there's a kind of happy tears which will come and wash away some of your cynicism, I promise.

"It was the greatest thing I ever did in my life.."  "The thing that was the best....everyone helped everyone..."
"Do you need help?" the boat captains yell to the shores of New York City, where thousands waited to get off the island of Manhattan, not knowing if more havoc was going to happen...   Boat captains called for more and more boats until they'd evacuated half a million people in less than 9 hours!


This is the embodiment of the AMERICAN....he has to help if he can.  Wait till you hear the testimonies of those boat captains on the video.

"...make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose."  Philippians 2:2


"I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty.  I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.  I can do everything through him who gives me strength."  Philippians 4:12, 13

Not a bad way to start your day, huh?  Have faith in Americans......they come through.  Something inside people awakens and they MUST HELP.   It's like these people were angels for God that day.  Wonderful.

Have a great Sunday......God bless those fabulous men who helped so many that day.. 

And HAPPY BIRTHDAY, DAD.....say hello to Mr. Z for me.
Z

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Royal Wedding Arrest..........is this a good idea?

Please check THIS article out...  Here's a bit from the linked article:

Adam Moniz's lawyer Sarah McSherry said the Metropolitan Police had apologized to Moniz for arresting him at Victoria train station on April 29 after they were threatened with legal action.
Moniz had been on his way to a peaceful, authorized demonstration run by the anti-monarchy group Republic in central London when he was stopped by police. McSherry said Moniz had no criminal record and no intention of committing a crime, but was held in a police cell for "anticipated breach of the peace." He was released without being charged six hours later after the royal wedding was over.

He had no intention of committing a crime?  Really? Are they mind reading now?   And, do all peaceful, authorized demonstrations go off without a hitch?  Did they "promise?" :-)  If there's going to be trouble, do they announce it?  Of course not!!  Here's the problem:   There was tons of talk that terrible threats had been made toward London's Royal Wedding a couple of months ago........Does law enforcement err on the side of the guy with 'no intentions of committing a crime' or do you err on the side of safety for thousands of people?  There must have been some reason they arrested the guy, gazillions did not get arrested.........nobody wants police willy-nilly arresting people, but this whole thing struck me as odd.
 
What do you think?   

z

Friday, September 23, 2011

It's YOUR LAST MEAL before execution!   What would you eat?   Come tell us at my food blog, Mac'n GeeeZ!
thanks!

9/11...an end to Conspiracy Theories?

VERY INTERESTING READING..........take a look at what one expert says proves the conspiracy guys are wrong. Here's a bit from the linked article:


Many 9/11 conspiracy theories revolve around explosions that were seen and heard in the World Trade Center's Twin Towers prior to their collapse. Despite scientific investigations that have explained the processes that brought down the skyscrapers, some conspiracy theorists suggest the plane impacts were just red herrings, to distract from the fact that 9/11 was an "inside job" — that explosives had been implanted earlier in the World Trade Center buildings and were what really brought them down.
Now a materials scientist has come up with a more scientific explanation for the mystery booms, and says his model of the Twin Towers collapse leaves no room for conspiracies. "My model explains all the observed features on 11th September: the explosions, molten metal coming out of the window, the time passing between the crash and the collapse, the fact that the explosions took place in a floor below the place it was burning, and the rapid collapse," Christen Simensen of SINTEF, a research organization in Norway, told Life's Little Mysteries.
 
There's excellent material in the article regarding Building 7's collapse, too.   It's all very interesting and stands strong in contradiction to the "Roughly 1,600 architects and structural engineers across the country, who have banded together in a group called "Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth.."    I wonder how those 1600 think anything like a cover-up that huge and complicated and important could be kept QUIET :-)

You ever had any doubts?
z

Macaroni and Cheese: A special tribute

Yesterday on the Yahoo Homepage, they had an article on Tips for Making the Best Macaroni and Cheese.  I could post this information at my food site (see link to the right on my sidebar), but I figured this was the place to follow Yahoo's lead and pay homage to Macaroni and Cheese and my food blog, Mac 'n Geeez!

HERE are suggestions for THEIR best mac 'n cheese.......from somewhere called Beecher's Handmade Cheese store, in either Seattle or New York.   I'm looking into if they deliver it frozen and will have some sent if they do, believe me!

They do, however, make an error:  They recommend one under boils the macaroni so baking it at the end makes it 'perfect,' and my family 'secret', which we finally realized after my grandmother (the best mac 'n cheese maker EVER) died, is to OVERCOOK the pasta just a little, EVEN if you will be baking it to finish the cooking process.  Yes, it makes it light and fluffy and absolutely delectable!   Of course, Beecher's must be excellent, but I just thought I'd chime in with my correction, lest you'd like to try that, too!

Happy Macaroni and Cheese!   I usually don't open anything about food to comments here at GeeeZ so I can direct you all to my food blog (and I thank you for commenting there so loyally!) but, since I saw the article at Yahoo, I decided today's a special celebration of macaroni and cheese.............let us know if you do anything special with yours;  we'd love to know!
z

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Food for Emergencies....got any input?

I keep hearing about companies which sell packaged dehydrated foods with very long shelf lives which would be good to have on hand in the case of an earthquake or hurricane, terror attack, etc.   There's THIS one,  called Wise Food Choice.......And THIS one, which I'm hearing even more about, called Food Insurance.......

The problem with these options and others is that they all need WATER to rehydrate the food.  Food Insurance says "One cup per meal", which could be quite a lot of water along with whatever water you've put aside for your drinking during tough times.  

Anybody got any input?  I'm curious and I can't imagine others aren't, either.  Thanks for any help.

z

obama and Netanyahu................got another caption? :-)

I'm fascinated with the extremely flattering words of Netanyahu toward Obama, especially considering their last meetings. Something may be up behind the scenes, huh? First Ehud Barak was very complimentary, and now Bibi? I wonder what's up. Hopefully, it's something good. After all, Obama is standing up to the Palestinians on Statehood.  Which is kind of surprising.  This is all particularly good for Obama, considering that some think Jews are turning against him in America because of his past treatment particularly toward Netanyahu.  He supported the Israeli embassy in Egypt last week; that's something I'm sure Israelis are grateful for. I think THIS article is a good interview between Stephanopoulos and Netanyahu...it's worth the read.   The picture's worth a caption....funny or not;  give it a shot! thanks!
z

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Obama at the UN: Got a caption?

I just added the picture on top; Imagine Obama feeling he had to WAVE in the picture? And, that poor guy behind his hand!! :-)

Barak, Barack, and the United Nations.........what do you think?

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - President Barack Obama pressed Israel and the Palestinians on Wednesday to relaunch peace talks as he made a last-ditch attempt to avert a U.N. crisis over Palestinian statehood and pull his Middle East policy back from the brink of diplomatic disaster.
Addressing world leaders at the opening of a U.N. General Assembly session, Obama -- whose earlier peace initiatives accomplished little -- put the onus on the two sides to break a yearlong impasse and get back to the negotiating table.

SO, does this mean he's throwing in the towel and pushing Israel and Palestine under that ever-crowding bottom of his proverbial bus so his Middle East policy emerges untainted by failure?  Is he washing his hands of the deal "putting the onus on the two sides" because whatever his policy was didn't work, or do you think that's the best way to handle it?

Did you hear Ehud Barak on Piers Morgan last night say that Obama had done more for peace in Israel than any other president?    Could you enumerate what Obama's done to deserve that glowing appraisal? 
thanks for any information.

z

O'Donnell and Huffington

Is it just me? Every time I have to look at either of these people, I wonder that they look so much alike. Google them more and you'll be even more convinced. The Greek and the Irishman? Separated at birth? :-)  


Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Gitmo; telling Europe what they'd like to hear?

Eric Holder had to go to Europe to announce that the Obama Administration WILL close Guantanamo(adding that "we will face substantial pressure").    So, his base is happy,  the liberal Euroweenies are happy, and Holder's the big star!  Look at the adoring gaze of Spanish president Juan Fernandez Aguilar!

Uhoh, this next picture indicates that either Holder mentioned Republicans or capitalism?   Or something else happened.  ?!! :-)
Gitmo seems like an odd thing to talk about with the European Parliament  when it's not too popular an idea in the States even with some Democrats, and Obama's got enough negative polling now to prevent a wise man from pushing anything quite so unpopular. Can we see some JOBS, Eric and Barack?   Campaign in Europe, announce in Europe what Europe would like to hear..........odd, isn't it?
geeeeZ! 
z
please chime in about what foods you need when you're ANGRY...click on Mac 'n Geeez to the right:
Oh.  And then go get that food because the info below will MAKE you angry! :-) 
I moved a couple of terrific comments to the food blog...had forgotten to block Comments here so I could get them over there!

Global Warming....another one bites the dust

Ticker sent me this information which is printed at NewsMax and other sources and I just had to post it.  Mostly, because it supports the truths in my post two posts down, and because Ivar Giaever teaches at RPI, where my wonderful father went to college, and because RPI is very near to dear ol' Troy, New York (where my family first settled when they arrived in America).  But, I digress.  Check this out:

Nobel Prize-winning physicist and erstwhile Obama supporter Ivar Giaever has resigned as a Fellow from the prestigious American Physical Society to protest the organization's promotion of manmade global warming fears.
Norwegian-born Dr. Giaever shared the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1973 for work at General Electric related to superconductors.
In an email to APS Executive Officer Kate Kirby on Sept. 13, which was obtained by the Climate Depot website, Giaever said:
"Thank you for your letter inquiring about my membership. I did not renew it because I cannot live with the [APS] statement below:

"'Emissions of greenhouse gases from human activities are changing the atmosphere in ways that affect the Earth's climate.
"'The evidence is incontrovertible: Global warming is occurring. If no mitigating actions are taken, significant disruptions in the Earth's physical and ecological systems, social systems, security and human health are likely to occur. We must reduce emissions of greenhouse gases beginning now.'"

Giaever goes on to say: "In the APS it is ok to discuss whether the mass of the proton changes over time and how a multi-universe behaves, but the evidence of global warming is incontrovertible? The claim (how can you measure the average temperature of the whole earth for a whole year?) is that the temperature has changed from ~288.0 to ~288.8 degrees Kelvin in about 150 years, which (if true) means to me is that the temperature has been amazingly stable, and both human health and happiness have definitely improved in this 'warming' period."

Giaever was one of Barack Obama's key scientific supporters and joined more than 70 Nobel Science laureates in endorsing him in an October 2008 open letter.
But in March 2009, Giaever was one of more than 100 co-signers of a letter to President Obama criticizing his stance on global warming. The letter stated in part: "We, the undersigned scientists, maintain that the case for alarm regarding climate change is grossly overstated."
Giaever, now a professor emeritus at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, is one of several prominent scientists to resign from the APS over its global warming position. Among them is physicist Hal Lewis, who wrote to the organization before his death this past May: "Global warming is the greatest and most successful pseudoscientific fraud I have seen in my long life." . (end of story)  (Z: I wish it was the end of the story, actually)

The truth's finally coming out.  But, of course, these are just experts in the field; what do they have to lend to the global warming scam, right? :-)  And, if  you gave some of them some bucks, they'll back Gore, anyway, huh?  Let me just add one thing which, in a normal world of informed Americans, wouldn't have to be said.  When Conservatives (and experts in the field) balk against the Global Warming scam, that does not mean we want to destroy our oceans, forests or air. 
z

Monday, September 19, 2011

New Post on the Food Blog

There's a new food question at my food blog, Mac 'n GeeeZ!   Come on by and tell us what you have to eat when you are STEAMED! 
Thanks!

Obama's Speech and Douglas Holtz-Eakin

To CNN's credit, Wolf Blitzer had Douglas Holtz-Eakin on today, a Former Director of the Congressional Budget Office.  Douglas Holtz-Eakin was on for quite a while, a much more satisfying forum than FOX's often unsatisfactorily limited time for guests from either side, so one got a good feeling for Holtz-Eakin's expertise...and how Blitzer couldn't keep up.   I had never heard of this man; his knowledge, expertise, and standing strong against poor Wolf's constant attempts at sticking up for the Democrats impressed me.  Wolf was in a tizzy because he didn't have any effective come-backs to Holtz-Eakin's words.    I highly recommend you read articles like THIS important one, by Holtz-Eakin.

"liberal columnist Mark Shields calls (Holtz-Eakin) "one of the most intellectually honest men in Washington."   I agree.........he was absolutely calm, informative, and fair. It was impossible for Blitzer to argue Holtz-Eakin's logic, that was clear.

There was a young woman with Wolf who kept telling viewers "All (ALL) experts agree we need to raise taxes"...then they showed Bill Clinton on one of the Sunday morning shows saying it was an "insult to the rich to tell them they don't need to pay more."   ??    Meanwhile, Holtz-Eakin totally negates those two statements, but CNN kept trying.............    But, as I say, to their credit, they DID have this guy on.


As for Obama;  Are you getting just a little tired of the Class Warfare he's instigated and perpetuates?  If this wasn't a CAMPAIGN SPEECH, there can't be a better one.  What kind of presidential conciliation attempt is it when he continues to lecture and practically verbally SPANK them like children every time he opens his mouth because, according to him, they just don't seem to get it!? ("We can't continue to put party before the country"....very effective campaign speech)   It's also VERY effective to his base and the poor (who pay no income tax and know it, but...) to hear his tone of voice,  supposedly so "in earnest", so "don't they GET it?" , so "I'm with the REAL PEOPLE"  but, how's that work in reality?   And do Americans who adore Obama care?

Like Holtz-Eakin said on CNN, it's SPENDING which is the source of deficit, not "not enough taxes."
They must address spending.  
Did you hear Obama talk about how we must create an environment where companies will want to stay here and not go overseas?  Really?  How about Immelt, his big friend who was invited to sit with Michelle Obama during the last JOBS SPEECH?  Immelt, who's sending more and more to CHINA?  How about the damage of unions?

"ALL the burden is on ORDINARY AMERICANS!"  "I don't like paying taxes, either, but I know I have to.."  We can't have "My way or the highway"  "I was encouraged to hear Boehner  say......but then he resorted to his 'my way or the highway' again!"    OH, poor pitiful Republicans, they just can't do ANYTHING right.


Were you able to force yourself to listen to Obama's speech as I was?  It was tough, believe me........but we need to see what's going on.    On the other hand;  nothing new.   And nothing toward conciliation.  But a great campaign speech to the uninformed.

geeeeeeeeeeeeeZ

Global Warming...integrity or money?

I found THIS at CUBE's blog......please read it and send it around to email friends:


Harold Lewis is Emeritus Professor of Physics at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Here is his letter of resignation to Curtis G. Callan Jr, Princeton University, President of the American Physical Society.
Anthony Watts describes it thus:
This is an important moment in science history. I would describe it as a letter on the scale of Martin Luther, nailing his 95 theses to the Wittenburg church door. It is worthy of repeating this letter in entirety on every blog that discusses science.

Dear Curt:
When I first joined the American Physical Society sixty-seven years ago it was much smaller, much gentler, and as yet uncorrupted by the money flood (a threat against which Dwight Eisenhower warned a half-century ago). Indeed, the choice of physics as a profession was then a guarantor of a life of poverty and abstinence—it was World War II that changed all that. The prospect of worldly gain drove few physicists. As recently as thirty-five years ago, when I chaired the first APS study of a contentious social/scientific issue, The Reactor Safety Study, though there were zealots aplenty on the outside there was no hint of inordinate pressure on us as physicists. We were therefore able to produce what I believe was and is an honest appraisal of the situation at that time. We were further enabled by the presence of an oversight committee consisting of Pief Panofsky, Vicki Weisskopf, and Hans Bethe, all towering physicists beyond reproach. I was proud of what we did in a charged atmosphere. In the end the oversight committee, in its report to the APS President, noted the complete independence in which we did the job, and predicted that the report would be attacked from both sides. What greater tribute could there be?
How different it is now. The giants no longer walk the earth, and the money flood has become the raison d'ĂȘtre of much physics research, the vital sustenance of much more, and it provides the support for untold numbers of professional jobs. For reasons that will soon become clear my former pride at being an APS Fellow all these years has been turned into shame, and I am forced, with no pleasure at all, to offer you my resignation from the Society.
It is of course, the global warming scam, with the (literally) trillions of dollars driving it, that has corrupted so many scientists, and has carried APS before it like a rogue wave. It is the greatest and most successful pseudoscientific fraud I have seen in my long life as a physicist. Anyone who has the faintest doubt that this is so should force himself to read the ClimateGate documents, which lay it bare. (Montford's book organizes the facts very well.) I don't believe that any real physicist, nay scientist, can read that stuff without revulsion. I would almost make that revulsion a definition of the word scientist.
So what has the APS, as an organization, done in the face of this challenge? It has accepted the corruption as the norm, and gone along with it. For example:
1. About a year ago a few of us sent an e-mail on the subject to a fraction of the membership. APS ignored the issues, but the then President immediately launched a hostile investigation of where we got the e-mail addresses. In its better days, APS used to encourage discussion of important issues, and indeed the Constitution cites that as its principal purpose. No more. Everything that has been done in the last year has been designed to silence debate
2. The appallingly tendentious APS statement on Climate Change was apparently written in a hurry by a few people over lunch, and is certainly not representative of the talents of APS members as I have long known them. So a few of us petitioned the Council to reconsider it. One of the outstanding marks of (in)distinction in the Statement was the poison word incontrovertible, which describes few items in physics, certainly not this one. In response APS appointed a secret committee that never met, never troubled to speak to any skeptics, yet endorsed the Statement in its entirety. (They did admit that the tone was a bit strong, but amazingly kept the poison word incontrovertible to describe the evidence, a position supported by no one.) In the end, the Council kept the original statement, word for word, but approved a far longer "explanatory" screed, admitting that there were uncertainties, but brushing them aside to give blanket approval to the original. The original Statement, which still stands as the APS position, also contains what I consider pompous and asinine advice to all world governments, as if the APS were master of the universe. It is not, and I am embarrassed that our leaders seem to think it is. This is not fun and games, these are serious matters involving vast fractions of our national substance, and the reputation of the Society as a scientific society is at stake.
3. In the interim the ClimateGate scandal broke into the news, and the machinations of the principal alarmists were revealed to the world. It was a fraud on a scale I have never seen, and I lack the words to describe its enormity. Effect on the APS position: none. None at all. This is not science; other forces are at work.
4. So a few of us tried to bring science into the act (that is, after all, the alleged and historic purpose of APS), and collected the necessary 200+ signatures to bring to the Council a proposal for a Topical Group on Climate Science, thinking that open discussion of the scientific issues, in the best tradition of physics, would be beneficial to all, and also a contribution to the nation. I might note that it was not easy to collect the signatures, since you denied us the use of the APS membership list. We conformed in every way with the requirements of the APS Constitution, and described in great detail what we had in mind—simply to bring the subject into the open.<
5. To our amazement, Constitution be damned, you declined to accept our petition, but instead used your own control of the mailing list to run a poll on the members' interest in a TG on Climate and the Environment. You did ask the members if they would sign a petition to form a TG on your yet-to-be-defined subject, but provided no petition, and got lots of affirmative responses. (If you had asked about sex you would have gotten more expressions of interest.) There was of course no such petition or proposal, and you have now dropped the Environment part, so the whole matter is moot. (Any lawyer will tell you that you cannot collect signatures on a vague petition, and then fill in whatever you like.) The entire purpose of this exercise was to avoid your constitutional responsibility to take our petition to the Council.
6. As of now you have formed still another secret and stacked committee to organize your own TG, simply ignoring our lawful petition.
APS management has gamed the problem from the beginning, to suppress serious conversation about the merits of the climate change claims. Do you wonder that I have lost confidence in the organization?
I do feel the need to add one note, and this is conjecture, since it is always risky to discuss other people's motives. This scheming at APS HQ is so bizarre that there cannot be a simple explanation for it. Some have held that the physicists of today are not as smart as they used to be, but I don't think that is an issue. I think it is the money, exactly what Eisenhower warned about a half-century ago. There are indeed trillions of dollars involved, to say nothing of the fame and glory (and frequent trips to exotic islands) that go with being a member of the club. Your own Physics Department (of which you are chairman) would lose millions a year if the global warming bubble burst. When Penn State absolved Mike Mann of wrongdoing, and the University of East Anglia did the same for Phil Jones, they cannot have been unaware of the financial penalty for doing otherwise. As the old saying goes, you don't have to be a weatherman to know which way the wind is blowing. Since I am no philosopher, I'm not going to explore at just which point enlightened self-interest crosses the line into corruption, but a careful reading of the ClimateGate releases makes it clear that this is not an academic question.
I want no part of it, so please accept my resignation. APS no longer represents me, but I hope we are still friends.
Hal
Harold Lewis is Emeritus Professor of Physics, University of California, Santa Barbara, former Chairman; Former member Defense Science Board, chmn of Technology panel; Chairman DSB study on Nuclear Winter; Former member Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards; Former member, President's Nuclear Safety Oversight Committee; Chairman APS study on Nuclear Reactor Safety
Chairman Risk Assessment Review Group; Co-founder and former Chairman of JASON; Former member USAF Scientific Advisory Board; Served in US Navy in WW II; books: Technological Risk (about, surprise, technological risk) and Why Flip a Coin (about decision making)

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Sunday Faith Blog

HERE is a site with a video you might want to watch.   It's made by the pilot who was scheduled for the Logan Airport to Los Angeles run which, instead, went into one of the World Trade Center towers on 9/11.  The pilot who flew that plane died, obviously.  The video is compelling and I felt it important to feature it today on my faith blog.   Plenty to think about...........trust me.

"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose."  Romans 8:28

God bless Pilot Tom McGinnis, who said "Ya, I'll take that trip," and who died the day after celebrating his birthday with his wife and children.  God bless Pilot Steve Scheibner and God bless America.

z

Saturday, September 17, 2011

HAPPY CONSTITUTION DAY

This is a day worth noting..........The New York Times does.........sort of.  Actually, it seems to blame the Tea Party for "fighting over it" on a day "devoted" to the Constitution :-)  Check THIS out.  Apparently, the New York Times thinks the Tea Parties have made the Constitution "sexy again."  ??


Happy Constitution, America.......is it taught in your public schools, folks?  Check this out from the NY Times article:
Constitution Day is hardly sweeping the nation — Tea Party Patriots could not quantify how many schools it had persuaded to participate. Still, if both sides want Americans to be talking more about the Constitution, they are succeeding. Many schools were passing out pocket-size Constitutions, in addition to the Tea Party Patriots coloring books.
In Orange County, Calif., high school students planned to watch a reenactment of Gideon v. Wainwright, the landmark case concerning the Sixth Amendment’s guarantee to a fair trial, including right to counsel. And in Nevada City, Calif., middle schools planned to show the now classic “Schoolhouse Rock” segment about the Constitution, with the preamble, sung folky, as its refrain."

HERE is Obama's contribution.   I'd rather he just followed it, wouldn't you?


z

Some things NEVER change

What have we learned in 2,066 years

"The budget should be balanced,
The Treasury should be refilled,
Public debt should be reduced,
The arrogance of officialdom should be
Tempered and controlled,
And the assistance to foreign lands should
Be curtailed
Lest Rome become bankrupt.
People must again learn to work, instead of living on public assistance."

- Cicero - 55 BC

Two very smart guys.

z

Friday, September 16, 2011

Solyndra.......even NBC has to admit Obama's folks screwed up



NBC did a fair appraisal of Solyndra in that video, actually showing the White House's hand in giving such money to a company whose future didn't look too good, and to meet political deadlines as quickly as possible, etc.  The American taxpayer is losing a LOT of money (half a BILLION dollar) because due diligence wasn't heeded.

Then,  THIS VIDEO is Mark Levin's interview with a Solyndra employee who was vetted before they heard her out.  Here's the gist of what she said   "While we were out there, while we were building it – cause it is a half a billion dollar plant – everyone already knew that China had developed a more inexpensive way to manufacture these solar panels. Everyone knew that the plant wouldn’t work. But they still did it. They still built it"


Think this story will go anywhere or do you think our media's strong enough to keep this pretty much out of the average American's face?    The interviewee says Obama and the White House had to know the company was insolvent because she's so low on the totem pole and even she knew things were not going well.   A half a billion dollars and the company lasted six months.   

We know there are emails from senior members of the administration suggesting they did NOT back this company.  We know that top execs in Solyndra contributed heavily to the Obama campaign.

Think this will really change anybody's mind about Obama, on top of all the other ...........  'stuff' in this White House's last 2 1/2 years?

By the way, the Obama folks are BLAMING BUSH.....except that doesn't fly:
"By the time the Obama administration took office in late January 2009, the loan programs' staff had already established a goal of, and timeline for, issuing the company a conditional loan guarantee commitment in March 2009," said Jonathan Silver, who heads the Energy loan program.
Republicans pushed back hard against this version of events, unearthing internal Energy Department emails that indicate the panel evaluating the loans had made the unanimous decision to shelve Solyndra's application two weeks before Obama took office.

oops
z

Thursday, September 15, 2011

"Cherokee Nation.........so proud to live.."

I find THIS fascinating and would like your input.  Have you heard of this case?  Here's the whole article:

TULSA, Okla. (AP) — A federal order for one of the nation's largest American Indian tribes to restore voting rights and benefits to about 2,800 descendants of members' former slaves threw plans for a special election for a new chief into turmoil Tuesday.
The federal government sent the sternly-worded letter to the Cherokee Nation after it sent letters last week kicking the descendants out of the tribe and stripping them of benefits including medical care, food stipends and assistance for low-income homeowners.
The tribe also barred the descendants from voting in a Sept. 24 special election for principal chief. The Cherokee Supreme Court ordered the special election after it said it could not determine with certainty the outcome of a close and hotly contested June election between incumbent Chad Smith and longtime tribal councilman Bill John Baker. The results had flip-flopped between the two during weeks of counts and recounts. Baker had twice been declared winner, but so had Smith.
The federal government said that unless the descendants, known as freedmen, were allowed to vote, the upcoming election wouldn't be valid.
"I urge you to consider carefully the nation's next steps in proceeding with an election that does not comply with federal law," Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs Larry Echo Hawk wrote in letter Friday to acting Chief S. Joe Crittenden. "The department will not recognize any action taken by the nation that is inconsistent with these principles and does not accord its freedmen members full rights of citizenship."
Crittenden said the special election would take place as scheduled.
"The Cherokee Nation will not be governed by the (Bureau of Indian Affairs)," he said. "We will hold our election and continue our long legacy of responsible self-governance."
The election has drawn national interest because while the tribe is based in Tahlequah, many of its 300,000 members live outside Oklahoma.
The freedmen have asked a federal judge to restore their voting rights before the special election, and a hearing is planned next week in federal court in Washington.
The tribe never owned black slaves, but some individual members did. They were freed after the Civil War, in which the tribe allied with the Confederacy. An 1866 treaty between the tribe and the federal government gave the freedmen and their descendants "all the rights of native Cherokees."
More than 76 percent of Cherokee voters approved a 2007 amendment removing the freedmen and other non-Indians from the tribal rolls, but no action was taken until the tribe's Supreme Court upheld the results of that special election last month. Cherokee leaders who backed the amendment, including Smith, said the vote was about the fundamental right of every government to determine its citizens, not about racial exclusion.
But the Department of the Interior said Tuesday that it still believes the expulsion is unconstitutional because it violates the 1866 treaty.
Marilyn Vann, president of the Descendants of Freedmen of the Five Civilized Tribes, said she hopes the federal order will result in the election being delayed.
"The freedmen people still have rights in the tribe such as voting," Vann said Tuesday. "We'll have our day in court."

Z: Think this is really about VOTING?   What are your thoughts?

z

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Weiner's Seat (you should pardon the expression)................

..................went to the REPUBLICANS   Excerpts:

NEVADA UPDATE: 6:20AM L.A. Time:  THIS story hasn't made the news.
Former Republican state senator Mark Amodei has won Nevada's special election to fill a seat in the U.S. House.
Amodei easily bested Democrat Kate Marshall Tuesday in the rural Nevada district that has never elected a Democrat.  
Now back to the NY STORY:

"We've been asked by the people of this district to send a message to Washington," Turner told supporters after the landmark win. "I hope they hear it loud and clear. We've been told this is a referendum. Mr. President, we are on the wrong track. We have had it with an irresponsible fiscal policy which endangers the entire economy."
The heavily Democratic district, which spans parts of Queens and Brooklyn, had never sent a Republican to the House. But frustration with the continued weak national economy gave Republicans the edge.
Turner has vowed to bring business practicality to Washington and push back on spending and taxes..........
The race was supposed to be an easy win for Democrats, who have a 3-1 ratio registration advantage in the district.............
The Democratic Party enlisted two of its biggest guns, former President Bill Clinton and Gov. Andrew Cuomo, to record phone calls for Weprin. And Democrats relied on organized labor and other affiliated groups to bring voters to the polls."


HALLELUJAH.   Let the Leftwing spinning begin.  This is HUGE.
Man, aren't you glad you're not Anthony Weiner tonight?  I think the Dems will be telling him "bye bye."  I actually feel sorry for the guy;  talk about adding to his troubles.
Off Topic...got a fave food?  Check out below!  Thanks..
z

My food blog's got a new post!

Check it OUT!   Got a FAVORITE FOOD?

Enjoy!

Obama and JOBS.........OOOOPS!

WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Barack H. Obama's promise Thursday that everything in his jobs plan will be paid for rests on highly iffy propositions.
It will only be paid for if a committee he can't control does his bidding, if Congress puts that into law and if leaders in the future - the ones who will feel the fiscal pinch of his proposals - don't roll it back.
Underscoring the gravity of the nation's high employment rate, Obama chose a joint session of Congress, normally reserved for a State of the Union speech, to lay out his proposals. But if the moment was extraordinary, the plan he presented was conventional Washington rhetoric in one respect: It employs sleight-of-hand accounting.

A look at some of Obama's claims and how they compare with the facts:
OBAMA: "Everything in this bill will be paid for. Everything."
THE FACTS: Obama did not spell out exactly how he would pay for the measures contained in his nearly $450 billion American Jobs Act but said he would send his proposed specifics in a week to the new congressional supercommittee charged with finding budget savings. White House aides suggested that new deficit spending in the near term to try to promote job creation would be paid for in the future - the "out years," in legislative jargon - but they did not specify what would be cut or what revenues they would use.

Essentially, the jobs plan is an IOU from a president and lawmakers who may not even be in office down the road when the bills come due. Today's Congress cannot bind a later one for future spending. A future Congress could simply reverse it.
Currently, roughly all federal taxes and other revenues are consumed in spending on various federal benefit programs, including Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, veterans' benefits, food stamps, farm subsidies and other social-assistance programs and payments on the national debt. Pretty much everything else is done on credit with borrowed money.
So there is no guarantee that programs that clearly will increase annual deficits in the near term will be paid for in the long term.
---
OBAMA: "Everything in here is the kind of proposal that's been supported by both Democrats and Republicans, including many who sit here tonight."
THE FACTS: Obama's proposed cut in the Social Security payroll tax does seem likely to garner significant GOP support. But Obama proposes paying for the plan in part with tax increases that have already generated stiff Republican opposition.
For instance, Obama makes a pitch anew to end Bush-era tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans, which he has defined as couples earning over $250,000 a year or individuals over $200,000 a year. Republicans have adamantly blocked what they view as new taxes. As recently as last month, House Republicans refused to go along with any deal to raise the government's borrowing authority that included new revenues, or taxes.
---
OBAMA: "It will not add to the deficit."
THE FACTS: It's hard to see how the program would not raise the deficit over the next year or two because most of the envisioned spending cuts and tax increases are designed to come later rather than now, when they could jeopardize the fragile recovery. Deficits are calculated for individual years. The accumulation of years of deficit spending has produced a national debt headed toward $15 trillion. Perhaps Obama meant to say that, in the long run, his hoped-for programs would not further increase the national debt, not annual deficits.
---
OBAMA: "The American Jobs Act answers the urgent need to create jobs right away."
THE FACTS: Not all of the president's major proposals are likely to yield quick job growth if adopted. One is to set up a national infrastructure bank to raise private capital for roads, rail, bridges, airports and waterways. Even supporters of such a bank doubt it could have much impact on jobs in the next two years because it takes time to set up. The idea is likely to run into opposition from some Republicans who say such a bank would give the federal government too much power. They'd rather divide money among existing state infrastructure banks.
---
Associated Press writer Joan Lowy contributed to this report.

Z: There's so much left out of this critique about Obama's plans, but I (And Elmer's Brother...thanks!) thought it was important enough to discuss.  I know my readers can find a lot more wrong even with just the "OBAMA REMARKS" above.........some are so obviously deficient in reasons for why they're bad, that it pains me that I have too much work today to get into depth.  Maybe you can help.  (For instance, does anybody know how much it would help our deficit if every rich person gave all they had? Answer: nearly nothing)

If Buffet wants to be used as someone who SHOULD pay more, WHY DOESN'T HE? Is there a law about not sending the IRS MORE? 

And, when Barack says we should tax harder those 'more FORTUNATE', does he mean 'fortunate' or 'harder working'?   MANY of those "Fortunate" didn't sit around letting someone else study or earn their money...they EARNED this good fortune.   Saying "FORTUNATE" makes it sound like they're all trust fund babies and who wouldn't rather steal from them than someone who worked hard?   And, please, LET them work on plugging up loopholes:  I'm okay with that.
What I'm not okay with is Jeffrey Immelt sending so many jobs to China and planning to send more.  Are you?   (you remember, ol' Jeff, the guy sitting next to Mrs. Obama during her husband's JOBS SPEECH!?  Oh, the IRONY)
Thanks! 
z

Monday, September 12, 2011

Paul Krugman's Tribute to 9/11

I heard John Bolton speak Sunday afternoon.........met him and shook his hand.  He's an amazing guy and talked for 30 minutes with no notes;  articulate, loves this country, and truly understands the threats.  One of the interesting points he made, though I can't take the time for all the details, was how so many blame our threats on us, that if we'd not gone into Iraq....etc etc.    He reminded us about N. Korea (probably about to do their 3rd nuke test) and Syria...working together....so many threats to Isrrael....about Russia, China, Turkey, Iran's nuke attempts, and made point that these are happening for other reasons.........not Iraq. I wish I could have taped what he said and transcribed it for you.    Anyway, he mentioned Paul Krugman's blog post for 9/11, which I printed below in BOLD, and I thought I'd bring it to your attention because it deserves your attention:


September 11, 2011, 8:41 am

The Years of Shame

Is it just me, or are the 9/11 commemorations oddly subdued?
Actually, I don’t think it’s me, and it’s not really that odd.
What happened after 9/11 — and I think even people on the right know this, whether they admit it or not — was deeply shameful. Te atrocity should have been a unifying event, but instead it became a wedge issue. Fake heroes like Bernie Kerik, Rudy Giuliani, and, yes, George W. Bush raced to cash in on the horror. And then the attack was used to justify an unrelated war the neocons wanted to fight, for all the wrong reasons.
A lot of other people behaved badly. How many of our professional pundits — people who should have understood very well what was happening — took the easy way out, turning a blind eye to the corruption and lending their support to the hijacking of the atrocity?
The memory of 9/11 has been irrevocably poisoned; it has become an occasion for shame. And in its heart, the nation knows it.
I’m not going to allow comments on this post, for obvious reasons.

Z: "oddly subdued?"  Do fringe leftwingers think parades are in order?  Stand up comics?  With all the memorial events and coverage, did you find them 'oddly subdued?'  
Unlike Krugman, I'm courageous enough to open this up to comments;   Let 'em rip :)

z

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Ten minutes of MSNBC on 9/11 tonight...

I watched 10 minutes of msnbc tonight...on 9/11.
From Condi Rice talking about possible warnings about airplanes hitting buildings....
to showing grandparents talking about how adorable their grandchildren who died were......
to how the airlines didn't have enough to go on so they couldn't  act.
Message: The administration really screwed up and those adorable grandchildren would be alive today...if only...........
NO MENTION of the airline ticket agent shown on CNN an hour ago, saying he feels SUCH guilt for not having followed one of the hijackers farther than he did after checking him in.   He said something in his guts told him there was something wrong, but he worried that people would think he was profiling.

msnbc didn't catch that.

Damn them.  And, by the way........was Condi Rice to shut all airports down until they were 100% no hijackings could occur?  I've always wondered how the left justifies bashing her for not having acted on warnings when they also bash anybody who profiles.

Go figure.

I'l say "Damn them", too, while I'm in the mood.

z
Do you like the memorial at Ground Zero?   HERE is an article on it.  The designer, Michael Arad, calls the two big squares with water falling into them VOIDS.  Does the concept of a  "VOID" do it for you?
Here's part of the article:  "A jury including Vietnam Veterans Memorial designer Maya Lin chose Arad's twin waterfalls out of 5,201 entries, saying it embodied the grief and the desire for healing that the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks inspired."

Do those VOIDS embody grief and a desire for healing for you?  I'll hold my opinion until I get a few of yours;  I'm eager to hear.

Thanks.

Sunday Faith Blog God Bless America

'MEET ME IN THE STAIRWELL'

You say you will never forget where you were when you heard the news On
September 11, 2001. Neither will I.

I was on the 110th floor in a smoke filled room with a man who called his wife to say 'Good-Bye.' I held his fingers steady as he dialed. I gave him the peace to say, 'Honey, I am not going to make it, but it is OK..I am ready to go.'

I was with his wife when he called as she fed breakfast to their children. I held her up as she tried to understand his words and as she realized he wasn't coming home that night.

I was in the stairwell of the 23rd floor when a woman cried out to Me for help. 'I have been knocking on the door of your heart for 50 years!' I said. 'Of course I will show you the way home - only believe in Me now.'

I was at the base of the building with the Priest ministering to the injured and devastated souls. I took him home to tend to his Flock in Heaven. He heard my voice and answered.

I was on all four of those planes, in every seat, with every prayer. I was with the crew as they were overtaken. I was in the very hearts of the believers there, comforting and assuring them that their faith has saved them.

I was in
Texas , Virginia , California , Michigan , Afghanistan . I was standing next to you when you heard the terrible news. Did you sense Me?

I want you to know that I saw every face. I knew every name - though not all knew Me. Some met Me for the first time on the 86th floor.

Some sought Me with their last breath. Some couldn't hear Me calling to them through the smoke and flames; 'Come to Me... this way... take my hand.' Some chose, for the final time, to ignore Me. But, I was there.

I did not place you who are reading this now in the Tower that day. You
may not know why, but I do. However, if you were there in that explosive moment in time, would you have reached for Me?
Sept. 11, 2001, was not the end of the journey for you. But someday your journey will end. And I will be there for you as well. Seek Me now while I may be found. Then, at any moment, you know you are 'ready to go.'

I will be in the stairwell of your final moments.
God
Please see THIS VIDEO, I saw it first at Rita's BLOG.
Here are the lyrics:
When the night
Seems to say
All hope is lost
Gone away
But I know
I'm not alone
By the light
She stands

There she waves
Faithful friend
Shimmering stars
Westward wind
Show the way
Carry me
To the place
She stands

Just when you think it might be over
Just when you think the fight is gone
Someone will risk his life to raise her
There she stands


There she flies
Clear blue skies
Reminds us with red
Of those that died
Washed in white
By the brave
In their strength
She stands

When evil calls itself a martyr
When all your hopes come crashing down
Someone will pull her from the rubble
There she stands

We've seen her flying torn and tattered
We've seen her stand the test of time
And through it all the fools have fallen
There she stands

By the dawn's
Early light
And through the fight
She stands (end of lyric)

God, we're sorry so many Americans have tried to erase you from our land;  we pray for your continued faithfulness and love.  Help all of us recognize You and help us to remember that "...the Lord lifts up those who are bowed down, the Lord loves the righteous." Psalms 146:8
"For it is written, as I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God."  Romans 14.


AMEN.  z

Saturday, September 10, 2011

My 9/11 Neighbors in Paris........an eye opener

I'm tired of feeling I need to hold back on the truth so people don't think the worst of me.   Honestly, lately, I couldn't care less what anybody thinks because too many of us have kept the truth back so we won't be considered racist or homophobes, etc. etc.  You know the drill, don't you.   If TRUTH hurts that much that we must hide it, deflect, and insult it in an attempt to make it untrue, America might as well fold up her flag and go home.

More on 9/11 in Paris: (see my post below for the first part of what's turning out to be a series of 9/11 memories from me)

Mr and Mrs. Z (that'd be me, of course) lived in Paris for four (heavenly) years.   We went through 9/11 while living at 6 Avenue Bugeaud in the 16th Arrondissement.   It was a nightmare to be so far away from America and an especially difficult nightmare to get all the grief and worry without any of the patriotism displayed in America shortly after the disaster.   I heard that, in America, flags were suddenly flying and people were going back to church and synagogues and love for our country was also otherwise on display;  I didn't get much of that in Paris; I saw patriotism only from the French women who sported American flag purses and bandanas in support of us and in spite of the feds telling us Americans to 'lay low for a while on the patriotic stuff'...........

Across the street from our apartment lived an Arab or Iranian family.  Windows in Paris are usually about 9' tall and unscreened,  with the obvious glass paned windows which open out instead of up, and lovely white metal louvered shutters which also open out and which have slits so you can have air and privacy at the same time.  The family across the street was conspicuous for the amount of time those metal blinds were shut tight.  I figured they didn't live there all the time because it was frequently dark for weeks but,  very often, I could see light through those slits even while the blinds were shut tight, disabling anyone from seeing in from across the street.   We were both on the fourth floors of our buildings and I could see windows all around that building open to the sunlight, glass paned windows thrown open for a breeze like mine were, etc., and, in contrast, I could see the odd closed windows, almost boarded up with light behind the louvers, which had always prompted my curiosity.  'Creepy,' I thought, to live in that apartment and not see out. What do they do in there?   Obviously, it was none of my business then nor is it now, but it was a very odd thing and I'd always been curious about them.

The day of 9/11 was, obviously, a nightmare for me and my husband.  We'd walked to the grocery store together that day......my mother'd left the day before, on 9/10, after her yearly two week stay with us (thank GOD she left that day and not on 9/11, because she'd have been delayed in Canada with all the others for days; remember how they'd kept people from entering America after 9/11?) and we needed lots of things.   Normally, I shopped on a more daily basis at the little fish and meat and vegetable/fruit stores in our area, loving the banter with the grocers, the freshness of the food, but, once a month or so, I'd walk to the big grocery store (called CASINO) and shop for heavier things like orange juice, milk, pastas, canned goods, wine, all those things that get heavy and I needed help.  I'd walk there, do the shopping, pay for it, and be told it would be at my apartment in two hours.  Deliveries were the norm at Casino and did I love that!  I'd buy an International Herald Tribune (mostly  for Calvin and Hobbes and the NY Times Crossword puzzle because the rest of it was the same idiotic bias of the NY TIMES, which owned the Herald with the Washington Post back then) and go to a favorite cafe and enjoy a hot, rich, lovely coffee served with cold water (the combo is deadly good) and soak in  the atmosphere of a French cafe which I love so much.

THIS day, Mr Z accompanied me and we walked home after shopping, passed my favorite flower shop (it's part of a chain called "Au Nom de La Rose" and sells only roses), with its rose petals strewn purposefully onto the sidewalk and the scent so beautiful, and I said "Imagine a world without roses!?"   We walked home and he went into his office and I went into the den and put the TV on................the first plane had just hit.    I called to him to come look, and the second plane hit.   Mr. Z said "It's terrorism."    I wasn't even sure what he meant, to tell you the truth.   Shortly after, the full impact hit us both. I knew that, very suddenly, I knew what a world without roses would be like.  And I have been right.  But, my story is about the neighbors across the street and I have digressed;

Those tightly closed louvered shutters across the street, directly across from our den, were open!  Lights in all the windows were coming on as the afternoon aged, and I could see the dark skinned Arab or Iranian folks inside greeting people.   Big hugs and smiles and congratulatory slapping on the back was occurring.   First, I thought it was a party, and I enjoyed watching the happiness!   Then I remembered what was happening on the TV in front of me, journalists talking about the horrible details coming to light every minute, and I began to wonder at people of any nationality having fun that day.......and then suspicion hit me and I shuddered and told myself to stop being suspicious, there must be a soccer game on because, as the guests were coming into the apartment, the hosts and others would point them to something at the windows and rejoicing.   My TV was against the window wall so while I watched it, I was facing their windows...... apparently, I realized it must be their TV that they were looking at, that theirs was in the same place and they could look out past the TV at my windows, too.   We were practically looking in at each other.  It crept into my mind that they were rejoicing ABOUT 9/11...could it be?  NO!  So, I went through every channel on French TV to see if there was an Arabic/Egyptian or Iranian soccer game they were rejoicing over.....surely that's what was going on to cause the glee!?

There was no soccer game.  There was no reason to rejoice anywhere on TV, just coverage of the World Trade Towers coming down.........hour after hour after hour.   On every channel.

And then I knew.  From the few times I'd happened to see our neighbors across the street, I'd learned that they were dark skinned people, some in Arab clothing, some in the very chic clothing one sees on Iranians, especially: I'd found the window thing odd because I like sunlight!, but it wasn't troubling, just a curiosity....But now I looked at these people in a very different way.......I saw they were thrilled, and they were thrilled over 9/11..  And they were pointing to their TV, glued to it as other guests kept arriving, showing their guests what was showing on the TV, huge grins, food being served, happy slaps on the backs.

Was this an anomaly?  Hopefully so.  Draw your own conclusions.  I did.  I don't remember seeing those windows wide open again.  It didn't matter, I could barely look out without thinking of that awful day and that awful reaction.  But, then I think of roses, anyway.......and try to concentrate on that.

z