Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 103

On the Final Launch
The early days of the space program remain in my memory. I faintly remember seeing Sputnik move across the night sky yet, easily recall Uri Gagarin’s first flight. Images of watching the Mercury launches at elementary school remain, and yes, I even watched the shuttle’s first test flight as it was released from a Boeing 747 for its glide test – so of course I watched the its first launch. In other words, the upcoming final launch of the shuttle program saddens me yet; I can only hope that its end will lead to a new beginning.

On Potpourri
Here’s a healthy pasta side dish from a restaurant chain: 1230 cal, 46 g saturated fats, 1439 mg sodium. Thank for Cheesecake Factory for your overly healthy Mac n Cheese

As for the Casey Anthony verdict, it’s tough to delivery “guilty” on a case that is built on circumstantial evidence; therefore, no justice for the deceased little girl.

MLB’s method for selecting an All-Star team continues to be as much as a joke as MLB Commissioner Bud Selig’s tenure.

NASCAR makes its first stop in the Cincinnati area this weekend for the inaugural Quaker State 400. Although Cincinnati is in Ohio, the Kentucky race dawns a Pennsylvania sponsorship. Interestingly, the main event sold 120,000 tickets and ticket buyers represent all 50 states. Bottom line is that the impact on the local economy will be huge.

On the way to Detroit last weekend, I spotted the Oscar Meyer Weinermobile going in the opposite direction – but I cannot confirm that Anthony Weiner was driving.

On the trip home, I spotted a Girls Gone Wild bus going in the opposite direction – but I cannot confirm that Anthony Weiner was on the bus.

Columnist Maureen Dowd provides an interesting perspective about a Twilight Zone in this read.

On Dollars
I discovered this week that the banking industry has a record amount of capital available for investment – yet, banks continue to keep the keep on the sidelines. Is this a political decision or a political decision?

A special thanks to the monopolistic price-gauging gasoline industry (who does not collude on prices) for raising pump prices twice last week. The second, a 15-20 cents per gallon increase going into the holiday weekend, was suddenly dropped on July 5th.

On Politics
Debt ceiling talks in Washington are simply political theater. I ask both sides why they continue to downplay or selectively use the Deficit Commission (Simpson-Bowles) report. Since I am more than tired of the GOP broken record of it’s our-way-or-nothing approach, it’s time to call their bluff.

USA Today provided opposing view columns about the debt limit.

Time watch: 26 weeks into Speaker Boehner’s leadership and still no jobs bill from the one who regularly asked, “Where are the jobs?”

Meanwhile, I appreciate this Bob Schieffer commentary about our politicians. See or read it here.

With baseball’s All-Star Game approaching, enjoy this version of Take Me Out to the Ballgame. Have a safe weekend.

15 thoughts on “Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 103

  1. Bud Selig should never have been made MLB Commissioner. The only reason they made him the head honcho, is that he would remain one of them, instead of having outsider to be named commissioner, and then have their collective toes stepped on if they happen to screw up.

    As for the winner of the All Star Game to determine what team has the World Series home field advantage, is a joke, and should get rid of, and go back to the alternating leagues.

    Also, play some World Series games in the daytime, and in the sunshine.

    I have a few more gripes about baseball, but that will be for another day, and/or maybe write a post about it.

    Have a great weekend, Frank

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  2. On baseball – I just saw on NBC Nightly News that Dick Williams has died. A player, a coach, and most famously, a “hard-driving, sharp-tongued” manager from 1967–69 and 1971–88. “He led teams to three American League pennants, one National League pennant, and two World Series triumphs. He joined Bill McKechnie in becoming only the second manager to lead three franchises to the Series. He and Lou Piniella are the only managers in history to lead four teams to seasons of 90 or more wins.” (Quotes from Wikipedia for the less knowledgeable readers, like me.)
    On the final launch – I’m with John Glenn. it’s an embarrassment that we can’t replace the shuttle, yet we’re paying the Russians to use their antiquated Soyuz. While I recognise the need for economy of spending in a bad economic climate such as today, I feel that a JFK-like long-term goal, be it manned space travel, return to the moon, or simple expansion of the ISS, would not only serve as a boost to both business and tech, but would give a much-needed morale boost to the country.
    On politics, regardless of event – I just keep hoping I’ll wake up. This has GOT to be a really, REALLY bad drug-induced nightmare.
    And only you, Frank, could see the Wienermobile AND a Girls Gone Wild bus. What’re the odds? 😉
    Have a good Friday, and enjoy the launch – if the weather permits.

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    • John,
      I knew if I forgot to mention the shuttle, you wouldn’t let me live that down – thus I put it first! I also heard John Glenn’s comments and I too was with him. Country does need a morale boost, but the politicians are doing what they can to prevent it! Enjoy the weekend and thanks for commenting.

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  3. My dad was an engineer for Martin Marietta Aerospace (he retired by the time it was Lockheed Martin) so I grew up around missiles (he designed surface to air missiles – vanguard, copperhead, pershing 1 & 2, Titan, Assault Breaker). When the Space Shuttle program began he told me it would someday be like a bus that would take us to space where we could work or even life. He wasn’t an optimist or dreamer – when I used to say I wanted a flying car like the Jetsons he would say “We have flying cars, Kellie. They are called planes.” So when he said the shuttle would turn into a intergalactic bus – I believed him. That sounded so cool. I’m sad that never came about.

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    • Beagz,
      Great story, so thanks for sharing. But the intergalactic bus can still happen, so don’ give up home. I’m curious to see the next generation. Have a good weekend and thanks for stopping by.

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  4. i look forward to bob schieffer giving an equivalent speech about members of his own profession.

    it just so happens that the other day, i was reading about the signers of the declaration of independence, and i read that the reason that john hancock wrote his name so much larger than everyone else was not so that the british would be sure to see it, but because he was the first one to sign it, and he didn’t know everyone else was going to write so small.

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    • Nonnie,
      Wow … you don’t like the guy! …. and that’s ok. Interesting how legend like the Hancock signature takes its own identify. We I heard Schieffer mentioning the signature, I was puzzled. Nonetheless, I appreciated his point about those on Capitol Hill. Thanks for stopping by.

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      • i don’t like bob schieffer or i don’t like john hancock? i don’t dislike either one, actually. i just get a little tired of members of the media feeling free to bash politicians when the media are the aiders and abettors. i do agree with what he said. i just wish he’d take a look at his own profession and the shambles it’s become.

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  5. Thanks for including in your Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 103, columnist Maureen Dowd’s fascinating article about Rod Serling. I look forward every Friday to exploring these types of nuggets in your blog.

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