Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 334

Cincinnati Zoo image

This is one of the first family pictures of Fiona with her parents (Harry and Bibi). For whatever reason, I see The Simpsons in this photo. Fiona continues to make great progress as well as integrating with her parents. For more photos and information, see these short updates from the Cincinnati Zoo.

Thanks for writers and readers involved with the Footprints Challenge. I appreciated the variety of the 14 stories (to date), which included 3 from newcomers (a pleasant surprise) – although my intent was not to expand my audience. A toast to the Canadian contingent that provided 5 stories. Special thanks to Dale who read and commented on all the stories.

If all goes as planned, a beach walk should return next week.

We recommend the movie Baby Driver. It was fun, fast-paced, and action-packed, and loaded with music accompanying the action.

The Middle East has been an unsettled mess for many years. Here are three articles worth readings: by Marc Ginsberg, by Aaron David Miller, and by the Washington Post.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (RJA-KY) says that (if the Senate bill fails) he will have to work with Democrats to strengthen the health care insurance market. I have two comments: Too damn bad, Mitch … and … No shit, Sherlock.

Yes, gerrymandering of district lines is a problem now, and has always been a problem. Democrats complaining about it forget they are also guilty; and Republicans forget they would also be complaining if the Democrats did the same thing.

I found this statement more than odd when I first heard it and it has stuck with me ever since. “Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing.” (Donald Trump, July 27, 2016)

Got to love this one. President Trump recently described his performance as having done “more in five months than practically any president in history.”

To lead you into this week’s dose of satirical headlines, The Onion explains how to recover from embarrassing situations.

Weekly Headlines from The Onion (combos welcome)
Mariana Trench once again named worst place to raise a child
New iPhone app alerts users to imminent sidewalk collisions with other iPhone users
done more in five months than practically any president in history
Blindfolded taste test participants keep knocking over bottles of soda
Late-arriving guest encouraged to load up on food that has been sitting in sun for past 4 hours

Interesting Reads
European migration with Europe
Contrasting capitalism: Apple and Google
The underwater world of Antarctica
The road of 1000 stories
Big Ben: The bell
(Photos) Weird but amazing bridges

For your weekend entertainment, this is not my favorite mashup of dancing scenes from old movies, but it is a lot of fun – and Justin Timberlake’s Can’t Stop the Feeling fits. Enjoy! In the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

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Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 234

On Politics
Congress failure to have a vote before leaving for the campaign trail regarding ISIS/ISIL is another example that members of Congress act with the party and personal interest first. After all, the majority of the House of Representatives skirt their responsibility while wanting to sue the President regarding use of executive powers. Vote them all out!

Did anyone see the Charlie Wilson’s War (the movie with Tom Hanks)? Discussions about arming and assisting the Syrian rebels reminds me of that movie.

A friend of mine told me that he heard a political commentator say that the reason nothing can get done in Washington is because there are too many people who are socially liberal but fiscally conservative clogging the streets. That’s a load of crap because there are very few in Congress who think that way. In other words, we are not a scapegoat!

An interesting interactive: US Presidents and their approval ratings

On This Week’s Headlines from The Onion
Man always taking good mood out on friends
Grasshopper dismembered by future Supreme Court Justice
Man having great time will soon have to apologize to everyone
Tense party enters third hour of unplayed acoustic guitar leaning against the wall
Man worried antidepressants will leave trace of original personality
Study finds mass extinction could free up billions of dollars in conservation funding by 2024

The Onion’s list of highlight from George Clooney’s wedding

Interesting Reads
Science is not democratic
Brookings’ on why government fails 
Mutual funds’ five-star curse
Bacteria may be telling you what to eat
Teaching is not a business
Insurance companies tracking your driving

On Potpourri
This past week was simply one of those limiting my time visiting blogs. 😦

I heard this story that sounds right from The Onion (but isn’t) … It seems a reality show will determine the crew for a privately funded trip to Mars.

Blog party right here this weekend, so sure hope you stop by. Celebration starts at 12:15 am (Eastern US), so Europe, the party will be ready for your morning, and lunch time in the Lands Down Under.

No Saturday Morning Cartoon post is weekend because of the party of pre-empting normal scheduling.

Your weekend celebrations

  • (Fri) Smile Day, Denim Day, Diversity Day, Borderline Personality Disorder Day, Caramel Custard Day, Techies Day, Butterflies & Hummingbirds Day
  • (Sat) Cephalopod Day, Balloons Around-the-World Day, Blessing of the Pets Day, Frugal Fun Day, Improve Your Office Day, Taco Day, Ship-in-a-Bottle Day, Cinnamon Roll Day, Golf Lovers Day, Vodka Day, Toot-Your-Own-Horn Day, Animal Day, Ten-Four Day, Card-Making Day
  • (Sun) Bathtub Party Day, Change a Light Day, Country Inn Bed & Breakfast Day, Blessing of the Fishing Fleet Day, No Prostitution Day, Apple Betty Day, Smile Day, Do Something Nice Day, Depression Screening Day

To send you into the weekend, here’s a mild song to enjoy – it’s the Doobie Brothers with Black Water. Hope to see you at this weekend’s party, plus 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. 196

On Politics
The decision of the potential bombing of Syria seems like a damn if you do – damn if you don’t proposition.

I have never heard of Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-SC) until Wednesday while I was watching the House Hearings regarding Syria. Congratulations Rep. Duncan for demonstrating that you are clearly a partisan ass.

I recently saw this bumper sticker: God is NOT Government. My response: Who says it is? Jeff Duncan?

On This Week’s Headlines from The Onion
Nation annoyed about spending long weekend away from work
FAA installs 36,000 foot air-traffic light
Local dad tells child “Tech is the future”
Majority of Americans favor sending Congress to Syria
Jellyfish falls short of dream to kill Diana Nyad
Royal baby already making new friends

Interesting Reads
String music
Infographic about minimum wages around the world
Psychology and Bidding on the Price is Right
The US Power Grid and Green Power
Faith and Doubt

On Potpourri
Friday is Iguana Awareness Day. Did you know that male iguanas are bulls and females are cows?

Other celebrations for this weekend include

  • (Fri) Great Egg Toss Day, Do It Today (I’ll celebrate Sunday), Lazy Mom’s Day,
  • (Sat) Feel the Love Day, Fathers’ Day (in Australia), Salami Day, Neither Rain nor Snow Day,
  • (Sun) Date Nut Bread Day, Fight Procrastination Day (I celebrated Friday), Hug Your Hound Day, Drive Your Studebaker Day, and Grandparents’ Day

Time: The Musical – Act 7 faced turbulence. Although the special prosecutor (asked for by the critical left) is now on the case, but has not filed the final report, I’m getting information for an undisclosed source. YUK!

My college football teams got off to a good start last weekend with impressive wins. With big games again this weekend, Go Bearcats, Beat Illinois – Go Falcons, Beat Kent.

As Dancing with the Stars announced their cast, I say “Ho hum” … but I’ll watch, although I sense the end is near – but we did see comedian Bill Engvall’s funny act many years ago.

I will be starting my fall break from blogging very soon, so I will be fading away from regular posting for a few weeks. But, I won’t be totally absent.

Saturday will feature an archival selection of Saturday Morning Cartoons..

Being that September is piano month, here’s some interesting entertainment 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. 195

On Politics
The 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King’s “I have a Dream” speech has been interesting. We have come a long way, yet still have so far to go. As Rep. John Lewis (D-GA) said, Sometimes I hear people saying nothing has changed, but for someone to grow up the way I grew up in the cotton fields of Alabama to now be serving in the United States Congress, makes we want to tell them come and walk in my shoes.

I appreciated the way President Obama used these common metaphors: the flame of conscience, a stream of conscience, and a coalition of conscience.

As a large segment of Congressional Republicans continues to do what they can to remove Obamacare, here’s an article about some Republicans who appreciate the Affordable Care Act.

I recently saw this bumper sticker: I’m Catholic, and I vote. My response is I vote without labels.

I hope “clear evidence” about chemical weapons use in Syria is clearer than the weapons of mass destruction evidence in Iraq.

On This Week’s Headlines from The Onion
Study: Americans enjoy watching TV, eating
Narrow gap in bathroom stall door to be widened Monday
Some stupid things making the rounds among your Facebook friends today
Syrian conflict widens as bears enter war
New desktop folder created for sad little project
Man thought to be dead wakes up two days after cremation
Study: The majority of children lack strong male supermodels

Interesting Reads
Juicing A-to-Z
Just another example of injuries retired football players endure
Physicists debate world’s composition
Travel guide and slideshow of Belgrade, Serbia
Golf’s history in America (a book review)
Power of forgiveness
Science and cable news

On Potpourri
Happy Wear College Colors Day! I don’t think orange & brown and red & black will be a good combo, so I wore the first on Thursday (Go Falcons, Beat Tulsa) and the second (Go Bearcats, Beat Purdue) on Friday.

If this celebration isn’t for you, Friday is Holistic Pet Day and Toasted Marshmallow Day. Saturday is Love Litigating Lawyers Day. Huh? Meanwhile, this weekend is the final chance to celebrate Safe at Home Week and your last chance to celebrate Golf Month, Win with Civility Month, and Mutt-i-grees Rescue Month.

For us in the US, Labor Day weekend marks the last major weekend of summer. Being that it straddles two months this time, I won’t feature September celebrations until the next Monday Morning Entertainment post. September 1st (Sunday) celebrations include No Rhyme (Nor Reason) Day, Calendar Adjustment Day, Chicken Boy’s Day Emma M. Nutt Day, Dolphins of Taiji Awareness Day, Toy Tips Executive Toy Test Day, and Building and Code Staff Appreciation Day.

Did you hear about the 11-year-old boy starting college to major in quantum physics?

This past Wednesday’s Tribute’s post was a lot of fun to do, so thanks for stopping by to celebrate the occasion … although it put me very behind on my visits! Although unstated, one of my goals was for readers to find new blogs to visit and for bloggers to get new visitors. Did it work?

As my Cincinnati Reds struggle, at least my golf game is trying to become more consistent.

Is Miley Cyrus going to be the next to follow the Lindsay Lohan/Brittany Spears meltdown model?

Because September is going to be a choppy month for me, the next act of Time: The Musical may be next week with the theme featuring songs with Hour(s) in the title. I hope to announced a definite on Monday Morning Entertainment.

Sorry, no Saturday Morning Cartoon post this weekend.

Here are The Piano Guys to send you into the weekend. (Well, I don’t think I’ve used this one). 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. 126

On Politics
Newt Gingrich came to Cincinnati this week, and I didn’t consider giving him any of my time. Even if he was just down the street (which he wasn’t), I have no interest in the boisterous curmudgeon.

By the way, no GOP candidate has 10% of the delegates needed, so Super Tuesday (which includes me in Ohio) could be a big swing for someone. These campaigns are so hungry that they are calling my fax machine to talk to the fax shrill.

As Republicans continue in yearn for President Reagan’s resurrection and return to the political scene, they continue to miss an important point – Whether conservative or liberal, Democrat or Republican, Americans want to a president that they respect and can believe in – and in retrospect, the majority of Americans felt that about Ronald Reagan.

From conservative economist Bruce Bartlett: My concern is that the Republican effort is just a smokescreen to incorporate phony-baloney factors into revenue estimates to justify unlimited tax cutting. How soon before the CBO is required to incorporate estimates from the right-wing Heritage Foundation in its calculations? ….. It is reasonable to assume that the Republicans’ effort to alter the budget process is just another aspect of their goal to politicize policy and institutionalize their philosophy.

I wonder how many times politicians have misused “small business” in their statements.

As the situation in Syria continues and gets more press, our pathetic politicians are a much better alternative to bombing one’s own people.

Here is a classic leading to my next section. Rep. John Fleming (R-LA) thought this story from The Onion was real: Planned Parenthood opening a $8 Billion Abortionplex

On Headlines from The Onion

  • Fantastic Roommate Won’t Stop Buying Toilet Paper
  • Man in International Airport Only Speaks Business
  • New Photos Reveal Stress of Obama’s First Term has Rapidly Aged Americans
  • Group of Calm, Confident Squirrels Stroll Upright through Central Park
  • Congressman Hurt to Discover Lobbyist not really His Friend
  • Intelligent, Condescending Life Discovered in Distant Galaxy

On Headlines from the Campaign Trail

  • Ron Paul Blames Florida Loss on Expensive Advertising Costs of Poster Board and Markers (The Onion)
  • Coke Super Bowl Features “Mean Mitt Romney (Satirical Political)
  • GOP Introduces New Mystery Candidate with Paper Bag Over Head (The Onion)
  • Mitt Romney Attacks Ben Franklin’s Poor Richard’s Almanac (Satirical Political)
  • GOP Nomination Now Two-Way Race between Romney and Total Voter Apathy (The Onion)
  • Right Proves Every Super Bowl Commercial was Pro-Obama (Satirical Political)

Interesting Reads

On Potpourri
Just learned about the Abrahamic Council – a group of Christian, Jewish, and Muslim scholars committed to longer-term dialogue.

Why are banks sitting on a robust of cash (thus not lending)?

Our handbell ensemble plays this weekend. It’s a very calm piece, which you can hear with a click. However, we do this without a vocalist, use different striker settings, but hopefully with the flute.

FYI: I will be posting tomorrow.

Have a good weekend everyone, and in the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch. Here is an interesting song to send us into the weekend. (Thanks xandi.)