Opinion in the Shorts: Vol. 283

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Sky: The Musical – Act 4: Moon is about 50 songs. A tip of the cap to all!

Act 5, the final act, focuses on Stars – so Star or Stars must be in the song title – but no compound words involving stars (as starlight, stardust, etc). Curtain time is Tuesday, December 15th at 9:30 pm (Eastern US) … and yes, I know it’s competing with the next Republican debate.

Explore series returns this weekend with a place that is on my bucket list to visit.

My Holiday Blog Party is next weekend – starting Saturday morning for the Europeans, but Saturday afternoon for the Aussies, Kiwis, and others in that part of the world – and it will go well into Sunday. Past guest know they will get to pick a gift, and to the first-timers, who knows what you will find. Music will also fill the air, plus I hope to convince Dale to provide the culinary treats. Feel free to invite your friends … and feel free to check in throughout the weekend.

Microsoft shortened this video into a commercial, which caused me to pause when I saw it.

Looking for a unique gift? Don’t forget to visit two of artist Marina’s sales sites: Marina’s Art Shop (artwork for sale) and Society 6 (where her artwork is transformed into other items). Besides her artistic talent, she’s a good person!

A high school football player in New Mexico had a concussion, in which policy requires to miss the next game. Because the next game is the state championship, the player and his parents sought and got a court order overturning the policy.

Numbers of Arabic-speaking people in the US continues to increase. Here’s an interesting article about the complicated matter for a school district in the Cincinnati area.

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I recently discovered a little known perk with taxpayer dollars. Retired House Speakers (most recently, John Boehner, R-OH) have a budget to establish an office, hire staff, and send mail for up to five years. I’m far from a Tea Party supporter, but cheers to Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) for wanting to defund this perk.

As Republicans continue use mental illness to explain gun violence, I ask this question: What legislation have Republicans advanced to address mental illness?

I’ll ask this tough question: Why wasn’t the shooter at the Planned Parenthood Center in Colorado Springs labeled as a Christian terrorist?

Donald Trump’s (R-NY) latest bloviation has created quite the stir. His followers are loyal, and will remain loyal. His numbers may dip – but the campaign continues to crack while the ceiling strengthens. Over time, the two candidates benefiting the most from him remaining in the race are Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Hillary Clinton (D-NY).

Donald Trump is smart, very good at thinking on his feet, and is using television to his benefit … thus, he is out marketing the rest of the field. After all, his strategies successfully aims at a segment of Republicans – thus is not intended for independents, moderates, or cross-over Democrats.

Given recent events, the next Republican debate could be a good one. It is this Tuesday (December 15th) on CNN … but I won’t be watching.

My wife (the Right Angle) laughed at this from one of her Facebook friends.


To lead you into The Onion, here’s a headline of an actual event that one would think is from The Onion: Man named Bud Weisser arrested at Budweiser brewery (True story here)

Weekly Headlines from The Onion (combos welcome)
Employee returns from vacation refreshed, ready to waste time
Hitchhiker with machete, driver with machete can’t help but laugh
Shamefaced man stands stock-still as acquaintance zips up backpack for him
After watching news, man checks wallet to make sure cash still there
Study: Heart transplant group significantly healthier than heart transplant placebo group
Vacuum cleaner salesman asks that ashes be spread on potential customers’ carpets

Interesting Reads
Smiling for photos hasn’t always been the way
Problem for Democrats: Little faith in government
An effect of finger-pointing in a free-speech society
Muslim Americans and ISIS
How to never forget a name
(Photos) Windows

Here’s a two-fer to send you into the weekend. The first is a leftover from Act 4 that features a sexy song by Maria Muldaur, JJ Cale, and Eric Clapton. The second helps celebrate Frank Sinatra’s 100th birthday celebration on Saturday. Have a safe weekend and in the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

56 thoughts on “Opinion in the Shorts: Vol. 283

  1. The dog pic is outstanding, Frank. You’ve given us lots to listen to and learn here. I’ve always been pretty good at remembering people’s names (the bbc article) and it’s usually because I repeat the name several times in my mind then note something about her or him to link to the name. And numbers, I’m freakishly good at remembering those, even old phone numbers!

    Frank, ole’ blue eyes. There will never be another.


    • Brigitte,
      Good to see you again … and I see you have a new post … I must come over as my plate has been full of load, thus I’m way behind.

      With OITS I try to cover a wide swath of stuff, so there’s always something for everyone. Cheers to your ability to remember names and numbers. When initially meeting someone, I tune more into them & the conversation – thus tend to forget their name. 😦 OH well … I imagine we could hear a lot of Sinatra this weekend!


  2. “As Republicans continue use mental illness to explain gun violence, I ask this question: What legislation have Republicans advanced to address mental illness?”—Yes, spot on, Frank (as is your question that followed this one). One can’t keep blaming mental illness but do nothing to address mental illness. And that is only one piece of the puzzle (and sometimes not even a piece). There are a host of other factors that play into gun violence.

    I probably won’t be around this weekend. I need to step away from the online world a bit on Sat and Sun and finally get my Christmas baking done. I’ll be visiting family, and they’ll be expecting my goodies! But have fun with your blog party!


  3. The news is pretty disturbing these days and I will include Trump in that. He doesn’t seem to be losing any momentum. That last shooting was close to my home town, Frank. I knew people in the building, knew of someone who was shot (my sister knows her). It is a really tough time. I hope we don’t see more of this, but we know it’s a possibility.
    I can’t wait for your party, Frank. That was so fun last year! We need some fun!!


    • Amy,
      Oh my … my best to you, your sister, and to those most affected. It just hit me how the Internet has decreased the degrees of separation.

      In terms of Trump, the first votes won’t be until late January – so he’s save. His core will stay with him, but a key will be what happens to the voters once other candidates start to drop out. I’m still in the “don’t worry about him” camp.

      Meanwhile … hey hey hey … party time it will be!


  4. I love the Microsoft video, Frank. I’d heard something about it, but I’d never seen it and I really enjoy it. I’ll be watching the Republican debate next Tuesday, but I can multi-task! I’ll be stopping by for Sky: The Musical. As a very close friend to someone suffering from a life-changing TBI, the result of a serious concussion, It’s disturbing for me to hear a report of parents gong to such lengths to actually change what I think is a good policy protecting against permanent head injury. Priorities! And then there’s Trump! The world has gone a little crazy!


    • Debra,
      The first time I saw the Microsoft video, I stopped … and then the second time, I stopped again – thus I know it touched me.

      Yes … the concussion case is very sad … and to think the Will Smith movie opening is about 2 weeks away … Meanwhile, don’t worry about Trump.


  5. Loved the Frank Sinatra. One of his best songs ever. 🙂 The Mason City schools article is very interesting. I don’t envy the superintendent her sleepless nights. I enjoyed the ‘How to never forget a name’ link. I’ll try to put some of the hints into practise and see if it helps. 🙂 Have a great weekend, Frank.


  6. THANKS for asking the questions: (1) Why Congressional Republicans continue to use mental illness to explain gun violence, then never advance legislation to address mental illness? (2) Why Fox News and Republicans who denounce Obama, CNN and MSNBC for not using the term “Radical Islam,” are unwilling to label the shooter at the Planned Parenthood Center in Colorado Springs a “Christian terrorist?”

    I’m in agreement that Donald Trump “is smart, very good at thinking on his feet, and is using television to his benefit … thus, he is out marketing the rest of the field.” I’m also in agreement that his strategies successfully aim at a segment of Republicans – THAT NEVER WERE independents or moderates.

    “After watching news, man checks wallet to make sure cash still there” hit my face with its connection to the Citizen’s United SCOTUS ruling.

    I look forward to re-reading:

    “Problem for Democrats: Little faith in government”
    “An effect of finger-pointing in a free-speech society”
    Kitty Kelley’s “His Way: The Unauthorized Biography of Frank Sinatra”


  7. You know, Frank, as a fake medical professional, I’m shocked, SHOCKED! that I didn’t know about that Apple breast implant!

    BTW, I got my new car yesterday. I went with your recommendation — an Outback. Lapis Blue


  8. I won’t get started on Trump or the definitely he’s a terrorist shooter at PP.
    The breast implant article was so funny. Too bad I didn’t have it for my breast encyclopedia. 🙂

    “Let there be peace on earth.” Thanks for sharing!


  9. Showing up late for this party…not the BigOneComing…just this one! Listening to MM, JJCale and Mr. Clapton as we speak, aFa. With Mrs. Right Angle’s permission…we (as in you and I) could be trying out some really cool tango steps. Our first foray into the realm of dance-floor stepping out…..grins. Big ones…..


  10. Listening to Sinatra, as I type. Love this song.
    Microsoft did a nice Christmas piece, and I look forward to your party! Never heard Cajun Moon before, but sure love that voice! Finally, the ITit has wit!


  11. Running behind, but still enjoyed all the music and party here.
    (Much more entertaining than the news these days.)
    And yes, when will ANYONE do something about mental illness assistance, research, and treatment – We’ve been asking and searching for years. A no longer young nephew has been struggling with paranoid schizophrenia since late teens. So few places to turn. Drugging into almost coma isn’t right. Australian and other places have found options. So?…oh, let’s give money to other places far far away. Yeah, that makes me happy.Don’t take care of our own and our close neighbors first….
    Was surprised that the Cincinnati schools feeling conflicted. Here every single child no matter what is expected to be enrolled in school. Visa, status is never considered. Immigration does not come into schools nor do schools talk with immigration. The job is to teach kids. Oddly HISD has the only Arabic language immersion elem. school in the country. You would have thought Chicago area would have had some for some time. There are several Chinese language schools along with many many Spanish language immersion ones. Have to teach the kids in the best way possible. Districts who haven’t had much diversity will need to catch up. Federal mandates for non English speakers. Important the kids get educated.
    Marina’s site is awesome. Great stuff. She’s so talented.
    Must run on, trying to catch up. Party on!


    • Wait. that should say Dearborn, Michigan rather than Chicago for Arabic language immersion school – I’m blaming a very insistent RC Cat for whacking at me demanding dinner for that error….She insists SHE’s the dear born and badly in need of food as she is starving to death.


    • Mouse,
      To me, the interesting dilemma in the local school situation regarding the Arabic-speaking students are the laws … that is, legally, no matter what the district does is against the law … but in my view, the district chose the correct course of action. Meanwhile, our meager approach toward mental illness is shameful.

      Liked by 1 person

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