Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 308

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The recent attack at the Istanbul airport rips one’s heart. Blogger Nia quickly came to my mind because I know she’s a kind, sensitive person who is unhappy with the political turmoil and the regional violence. I encourage you to visit her blog to offer your support to her and the good people in Turkey.

Although I continue to believe my personal mantra that the majority of the world is good, this and similar incidents challenge my view …. but I continue to hang on! Meanwhile, the key to defeating ISIS (in my opinion) starts within the Arab world.

Loud cheers to Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred for allowing the Cincinnati Reds to honor Pete Rose by retiring his number and allowing him to enter the Reds Hall of Fame. The previous commissioner felt the need to extend Rose’s punishment to the Reds organization, Reds fans, and the city of Cincinnati.

Hey hey hey – it looks like our Argentine Tango class will be extended by one week!

The distance separating Cincinnati and West Virginia isn’t very much. Whereas very little rain has fallen at my residence, West Virginia is flooding. I think it’s President Obama’s fault.

My life has been one of major adjustments the past 3 months. My wife’s retirement and my part-time job have affected whatever time is left in a day – therefore, my poor attendance among the blogs.

Thanks to all who participated in Colors: The Musical! As of this writing, I’m way behind on replying to comments, but I’ll get there! Thanks for your patience.

This is a long holiday weekend in the US (4th of July), so no Explore post this weekend.

The combo came to mind by using the subject lines in my email spam folder: Rock-hard Trump destroys Cialis implant

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I found interest in this week’s Supreme Court ruling regarding the abortion laws. Although Ohio was not on the list of states with similar laws, my state has also been on the restrictive path.

Polls and studies showing the majority of Americans say that Congress is doing a bad/poor job make me laugh because the vast majority of elected officials in Congress get re-elected. Which best describes the voting public: anger or complacency?

The recent BREXIT vote created many shock waves across the world. Around all the chaos, it is important to remember the primary cause: It’s President Obama’s fault.

Be cause of the US process for electing a president, I know national polls are essential meaningless – but the closeness of the polls is both fascinating and disturbing.

This week’s aFa Power Rankings for Donald Trump’s running mate: 5) Mitch Pence, 4) Chris Christie, 3) Bob Corker, 2) Jeff Sessions, 1) Newt Gingrich

The first week’s aFa Power Rankings for Hillary Clinton’s running mate: 5) Sherrod Brown 4) Elizabeth Warren, 3) Xavier Becerra, 2) Thomas Perez, 1) Tim Kane

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To lead us into the satire portion of this post, The Onion provides tips for handling social anxieties.

Weekly Headlines from The Onion (combos welcome)
Man driving while making YouTube video to explain how PC culture destroying America
‘Five-Second Rule’ disproven
Black mark on birth control manufacturer’s record weighs in at 7 pounds, 6 ounces
Factory robot working on some of its own designs after hours
Three-year-old announces plan to point out fat people all day long.
Only news source man trusts has logo of eyeball with crosshair

Interesting Reads
A moderate working in a polarized environment
Classic music and new technologies (Thanks Tim)
A collection of matchbook boxes from India
Education in Estonia
The Irish pirate queen
Has physics made philosophy and religion obsolete?
(Photos) The Night Skies

Here’s one of my all-time favorite music videos. Have a safe weekend and in the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 305

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For those enjoying the Cincinnati murals, here’s an article (with images) about the latest additions.

To my Muslim readers, best wishes as you start Ramadan.

The passing of any life causes us to reflect about that life – and the passing of Muhammad Ali was no exception. I was a teen when he became champion, and I know I didn’t understand much about him. But over time, my respect for him grew – and watching him light the torch at the Summer Olympics in Atlanta was quite the surprise. I salute a great ambassador for humanity. Here’s a gallery of images about his life from the BBC.

In this week’s post about the gorilla incident at the Cincinnati Zoo, I mentioned this editorial by the Toledo Blade calls for boycotting all things Cincinnati. I wrote to the paper’s editorial board to issue a challenge, but (as I expected) no response. After all, I want them to practice what they preach. I challenged them to the following:

  • Encourage the people of Toledo to
    • Not shop at any of the 12 Kroger grocery stores in Toledo
    • Not shop at Macy’s
    • Not purchase any Procter & Gamble products
    • Never come to Cincinnati, attend an event, eat at a restaurant, stay at a hotel, or even stop for gas as they travel south on I-75
  • Ask all retailers in the Toledo area (especially Kroger, CVG, Walgreen, Walmart, and Target) to remove all Procter & Gamble products from their store shelves
  • Encourage the University of Toledo and the Toledo professional hockey team to cancel games with Cincinnati teams

An idea: The Cincinnati Zoo could lead the way by enclosing pedestrian walkways in wire to keep visitors contained.

There are different types of tango, but our ballroom time has been with American tango. Argentine tango is different, so we decided to attend a 3-week group class. In week 1, the instructor focused on walking – then sent us this video of a couple doing an Argentine tango routine focusing on walking. Wow … now that is making simple look great.

That couple competes at a very high level. For those who what to see one of their routines, click here.

My favorite golf tournament (the US Open) is a week away. Oakmont is hosting the tournament, so given the USGA’s recent record of setting the course, I will be interested to see what they do to this fabulous golf course.

After a delay of a week, Colors: The Musical returns next week featuring songs with a color shades in the title. Curtain time will be at 9:30 pm (Eastern US) on Tuesday, June 14th. Here are the key rules.

  • No songs with any of the following colors in the title: Black, Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo, Violet, Purple, or White in the title.
  • Shades should be an acceptable shade name, therefore caution should be used when selecting a shade.
    • Just because the shade is used as a paint color doesn’t automatically qualify the entry.
    • To make matters worse, The Producer has the final say on if the submitted shade is acceptable.
  • No duplicate shades can be used. In other words, once an acceptable song with Puce in the title has been submitted, no other songs with Puce in the title will be acceptable.

If I can get it ready, there will be an Explore post this weekend.

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Public service is about serving the people. Politics is about serving the party. Unfortunately, much of public service is about politics.

Congratulations to Hillary Clinton (D-NY) for coming the presumptive Democratic nominee.

I find it interesting the ardent supports of Donald Trump (R-NY) continue to find scapegoats for his lying, harassment, disrespect, and lack of knowledge on issues. Then again, they are simply following the actions of their leader.

This week’s aFa Power Rankings for Donald Trump’s running mate: 5) Nikki Haley 4) Jeff Sessions, 3) John Kasich, 2) Bob Corker, 1) Newt Gingrich

The first week’s aFa Power Rankings for Hillary Clinton’s running mate: 5) Julian Castro, 4) Sherrod Brown, 3) Mark Warner, 2) Tim Kane, 1) Thomas Perez

We are already getting many televisions ads from both sides in the campaign for the contested Senate seat (Portman/Strickland).

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To lead you into your weekly dose of satire, The Onion explains what our planet will look like in the year 2100.

Weekly Headlines from The Onion (combos welcome)
Antidepressant Medication Label Reminds Users That Pill Should Never Be Mixed With Long Look In Mirror
U.S. Consumer Confidence Shaken After Mom Buys Wrong Kind Of Tortilla Chips
Man Who Sees The Good In All People Universally Despised
KFC Manager Wants Bucket On His Desk By End Of Day
Governor Urges Calm At Toyotathon

Interesting Reads
Zachary Taylor and death to the Whigs
The right to try experimental drugs
Maneuvering Heimlich
A brief history of pirates
New water-saving techniques
Global trends with renewable energy
The UK’s oldest handwritten note
BBC’s look at the US media-Donald Trump addiction

Summer has arrived for those of us in the northern hemisphere, so here’s Glenn Frey to send you into the weekend. Have a safe weekend and in the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 193

On Politics
Several years ago, we stood in awe and applauded Egypt’s Arab Spring – but today we stand in shock, horror, and dismay. I recall writing in the past that the part of the Arab world’s transition was an unknown of the product – and that is remains true today.

This statement by former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-GA) is good: We (Republicans) have to get beyond being anti-Obama and we have to reconvince people that we can have hope in America. … People have to think you are serious about governing and have positive ideas.

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) described many members of Congress having Dinosaur Syndrome – a condition of big hearts and a small brain. If someone does not think Sen. Paul is the smartest on Capitol Hill, just ask him.

On This Week’s Headlines from The Onion

  • Mom spends beach vacation assuming all household duties in closer proximity to ocean
  • Scientists create microscopic Mona Lisa
  • Expendable 3 cast to be paid in steroids, meat
  • Cat seemed perfectly content right up to moment he bolted from room
  • Unpaid internship a great experience for local company
  • Boy asks nation not to find his missing little brother

Interesting Reads

On Potpourri
Friday (Aug. 16th) is the 36th anniversary of Elvis’s death. USA Today treats Elvis fans with this article: Imagine if Elvis Never Left the Building

Friday is National Airborne Day (Army paratroopers), Men’s Grooming Day, and the start of National Aviation Week. The weekend is loaded with celebrations as International Homeless Animals Day, Meaning of Is Day, and National Thrift Shop Day (all Saturday); and Sunday is Bad Poetry Day, Mail Order Catalog Day, Serendipity Day, and World Daffodil Day.

Although I don’t think it was good judgment for a parent to name her child Messiah, I don’t agree with the judge’s ruling that the mother must change the child’s name.

To me, losing pets is one of the tough moments in life. Elyse, we are sorry to hear the news about Cooper.

Get ready for the next rendition of Time: The Musical. Although I’m unsure of the exact day, the next theme features songs with Weekend, Saturday, Sunday, or their plural forms in the title. I’ll announce the day on the upcoming Monday Morning Entertainment post.

It’s not together yet, but I’m planning a Saturday Morning Cartoon post this weekend.

Given the day, it seems that Elvis sending you into the weekend to Las Vegas is appropriate. In the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 135

On Politics
Last week I listened to Mitt Romney’s speech to a professional group of editors. It’s interesting how he compares President Obama to Candidate Obama – especially coming from him – the one who exceeds John Kerry’s flip-flops by a large margin.

Although I shook my head when I heard Hilary Rosen’s (CNN contributor) comment about Ann Romney, her next-day explanation was more pathetic.

President Obama recently stated the following in Chicago, “When it is 75 degrees in Chicago in the beginning of March, you start thinking.” If we was referring to global warming, that is not a good idea because any one who makes a comment about the weather at a given point in time in reference to global warming is giving a poor example for the support of or opposition to global warming.

Although national polls show President Obama leading Mitt Romney, let us not forget that the presidential election NOT a national vote, but a state-by-state proposition. In that light, last weekend’s Wall Street Journal had this interesting graphic regarding the election polls in key battleground states. Then again, much can change in the six months ahead.

Gotta love this one from The Onion: Gingrich asks Romney to Drop Out so He Can Focus on the General Election

Because someone should ask, here’s a question for Mitt Romney: You state President Obama prefers “European-style socialism.” Is this as opposed to American-style socialism?

Dork of the Year Nominees 

  • 5th Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Jerry Smith for throwing himself into a partisan situation by assigning a homework assignment to the Justice Department.
  • Rep. Alan West (R-FL) for “.. there are 78 to 81 members of the Democratic Party (in Congress) that are members of the Community Party.”
  • Hilary Rosen (as previously stated)

On Headlines from The Onion
Rapid Swelling Man May Contain Traces of Peanuts
Bomb-Sniffing Dog Humps Bomb-Defusing Robot
Promising 9-Pound Bass to Turn Pro
Coughed Ritz Cracker Dust Beautifully Illuminated by Glow of Television
Sweeping Labor reforms Allow Employees to Work in Inhumane Conditions from Home
U.N. Acquires Nuclear Weapon
Rod Stewart Mistaken for Elderly Aunt

Interesting Reads
Citizen United Part II
Crawling Out of the Deep Unemployment Hole
Interesting graphic relating cost to height in New York City
Ruth Marcus Disorder in the Court
Tennessee’s Monkey Bill
Science Also Belongs to the Religious

On Potpourri
Woo hoo! This week I received my first-ever shipment as a wine club member.

I recently heard this interesting analogy: We find our life between two parallel tracks, joy and sorrow – and our life journey fluctuates between the two.

I will post tomorrow for the weekend.

Agree with him or not; like him or not; Mike Wallace dedicated himself to broadcast journalism for 50+ years. Here’s a wonderful tribute from CBS.

Sadly, I see my Cincinnati Reds Finishing second in the division this year because of my worries of inconsistent hitting, especially from the right hand side of the plate – but I still say Go Reds.

This past Monday I featured a wonderful rendition of Nearest My God to Thee. It wasn’t until Bruce pointed it out that this was the hymn being played on the Titanic’s deck – and this is the 100th anniversary of that tragic event. In the memory and honor of those on the Titanic, I present the solemn version of Nearest My God to Thee … and this time knowingly.

Have a good weekend everyone. In the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch. Now I close with Monday’s more joyous version.

Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 133

On Politics
In the past month, Rick Santorum lead in the state he served as senator, has gone from +30 to +2.

Delusional? “We are reorganizing to execute the strategy we need to win the nomination.” (Joe DeSantis, Communications Director of the Newt Gingrich Campaign after the campaign lay-offs staff)

While in Cincinnati, Karl Rove (a Republican strategist) recently proclaimed President Obama “the most vulnerable Democratic president since Jimmy Carter.” Brilliant for the partisans, but weak for the pragmatic because President Obama is the second Democratic president since President Carter.

A quote by me on another blog, “Contradictions and politicians are a better match of words than macaroni and cheese.”

If there was ever a time to broadcast the US Supreme Court, the latest healthcare hearings was it. The Court’s decision to deny broadcast has nothing to do with tradition, privacy, or obstruction. After all, there was a time when the justices rode a horse to their job. (Thank you CNN viewer for the line.)

As Reuters reports two-thirds of Americans are unhappy how President Obama is handling something he cannot control, I say a high majority of that two-thirds needs to be educated about the factors depending gas prices.

Does anyone think that the US Supreme Court Justices haven’t already made up their mind before hearing the presentations about the Affordable Care Act?

On Headlines from The Onion
Small Town Mayor Steps Down Amidst Scandal over Forged Coupon
Procrastinating Catholic 20 Rosaries Behind
Jeff Beck Lured into Dark Alley with Old-Guitar-Pick-on-a-String Trick
Boss’s Going Away Party a Little Too Jubilant
Man Died in Sleep During Terrible Nightmare
Closing of State Aviary Facilities Puts Hundred of Mentally Ill Birds on the Streets

Interesting Reads
John Avlon about the Right and the Mandate
The Foulness of the “Activist Judges” Cry
Michel Tomasky on the Freedom Fetish
Thomas Friedman about Mid-East Policy
Kathleen Parker on Moderation

On Sports
Baseball season is about to start. Ah yes, I remember the days when Major League Baseball respected and honored Cincinnati with the traditional opener. Meanwhile, there is nothing like Opening Day in Cincinnati, which is this April 5th.

In the spirit of college basketball’s Final Four weekend, I propose that college who recruit a player and then that player leaves after one year, the college loses that scholarship for 3 years (and a similar progression for year 2). Oh I forgot that NCAA leadership are eunuchs and at least as bad as, and possibly worse, than Congress.

On Potpourri

Jonas Salk tested his polio vaccine on himself and his own family. It’s fun imagining what the FDA might make of that today. But Salk’s selflessness was genuine. For one thing, neither he, nor Albert Sabin, who developed the oral version of the vaccine, ever even patented their inventions.

But Jonas Salk was not some absent-minded science nerd. He had originally gone to college to study law, and what he cared about most intensely was his fellow man. In a 1991 interview, four years before he died, Salk explained that as a young man he was never drawn to science, per se. “I was merely interested in things human, the human side of nature, if you like,” he said. “That’s what motivates me. And, in a way, it’s the human dimension that has intrigued me.” (Carl Cannon, Editor, Real Clear Politics)

The latest sensation from Britain’s Got Talent brought a tear to my eye.

Congratulations Starla for being the 9000th comment on this blog (earlier this week).

I will have a post on Saturday.

I think the video below will send you into the weekend with a smile. Have a good weekend everyone, and in the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.