Monday, July 22, 2013

Denial might be a beginning. But, complete ignorance is not short path of successful dialogue.

My oldest son was born on a Full Moon and my second on a New Moon.

The full moon

15.1 day old moon

99.8% lit

"Happy Baby Day"
When litigating in opposition to the Petroleum Industry and challenging their expertise, remember this.

The USA pays subsidies to the industry. Very expensive subsidies. Supposedly the reason for these subsidies is to prop up the small operator.

Then realize that many holes drilled in the USA by this industry, small operator or large, either on land or offshore, do not produce any oil or gas.

Race Baiter and Chief

The way I see this is an attack on YOUTH. The other aspect is that discussing race makes the right wing media very uncomfortable. They don't want to confront their own lack of knowledge, their own comfort zone and they don't have the language. 

I appreciate Senator McCain for stepping up and recognizing the canyon of concern by the African American community in the USA. 

Part of what President Obama stated is that this subject should not be politicized. We are to explore our own feelings, our own lack of feelings, our lack of or ample compassion regarding these topics. Gun violence is a huge issue for our minorities. There are significant gaps in prosperity in the USA between classes of people and races of people. That is not a minor topic. 

The reason President Obama did not want to politicize the topics is because he does not want to marginalize the discussions. He wants the discussion to be productive while knocking down barriers, fears and THE INABILITY to reach across the possibility there are still racial barriers in the USA. Finding common ground is a good place to start. Common ground like, how is everyone doing in achieving the American Dream?

But, in regard to Trayvon Martin, there is also an unspoken attack on youth. Out of control. Irreverent. Undisciplined. That is a sad undertone to our youth. They don't have to 'FIT THE MOLD.' They simply have to belong to the same country we brought them into.

Congratulations to William and Kate.

It is good of them to open their lives to so many around the world. There are times as this that causes pause to remember our own joys. That could never be bad.

I wish the family good health and much happiness. Time passes fast and a child grows so quickly. Treasure today.

Caroline Davies
July 22, 2013 

The new parents must balance media interest with the desire for privacy for their child. Not an easy thing these days

There is normal and then there is royal "normal". The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will undoubtedly aspire to give their firstborn as normal an upbringing as possible, but that automatic HRH style bestowed at birth on the orders of the Queen will inevitably constrain.

The royal template leads to expectations of an infant destined for an elite private education, including as a boarder, and with a nanny in the background for those times when mama and papa are away fulfilling their domestic duties and flying the flag in far-flung places on foreign tours.

Then a university will be selected, along with a suitable degree course. There are no degrees on offer in modern sovereignship, but art could be useful given he will be surrounded by historic works during his lifetime. Both William and Kate studied history of art at St Andrews, though William switched to geography. Constitutional law could perhaps be equally handy.

Thereafter gender dictates. Royal male heirs are easy and undergo a stint in the military....

It must reassuring to have a National Health Service for new babies.

American Way of Birth, Costliest in the World (click here

June 30, 2013 
By Elisabeth Rosenthal

 LACONIA, N.H. — Seven months pregnant, at a time when most expectant couples are stockpiling diapers and choosing car seats, Renée Martin was struggling with bigger purchases.

At a prenatal class in March, she was told about epidural anesthesia and was given the option of using a birthing tub during labor. To each offer, she had one gnawing question: “How much is that going to cost?”

Though Ms. Martin, 31, and her husband, Mark Willett, are both professionals with health insurance, her current policy does not cover maternity care. So the couple had to approach the nine months that led to the birth of their daughter in May like an extended shopping trip though the American health care bazaar, sorting through an array of maternity services that most often have no clear price and — with no insurer to haggle on their behalf — trying to negotiate discounts from hospitals and doctors.

When she became pregnant, Ms. Martin called her local hospital inquiring about the price of maternity care; the finance office at first said it did not know, and then gave her a range of $4,000 to $45,000. “It was unreal,” Ms. Martin said. “I was like, How could you not know this? You’re a hospital.”

Midway through her pregnancy, she fought for a deep discount on a $935 bill for an ultrasound, arguing that she had already paid a radiologist $256 to read the scan, which took only 20 minutes of a technician’s time using a machine that had been bought years ago. She ended up paying $655. “I feel like I’m in a used-car lot,” said Ms. Martin, a former art gallery manager who is starting graduate school in the fall....

Do NOT demolish Detroit. DO NOT!

There are some magnificent buildings in Detroit. This is the old United Artists Theater.


Modern Ruins of Abandoned Detroit (PHOTOS) (click here)

Someone needs to purchase that abandoned piano from the city. I can't help but wonder what kind of wood this is for holding up for so long.

There is very little wrong with this school auditorium. The city needs help, not demolition.

There is nothing that wrong with this church. It is beautiful. It needs hope and people.

And we need a rail project, too.

The city government needs a vision. I see a gold mine.

To begin that is very old glass. It is delicate, but, an artist would have a field day with it.

The VIEW needs planning and zoning to create a large park and additional places for architects to build on property purchased for modern purposes. 

Business offices with apartments above and local shops below. That can be a fantastic view.

I betcha Detroit has not done an inventory of the antiques within it's grasp.

The New Jersey Meadowlands went through a period of clean up as Brownfield sites. There were all kinds of problems including chromium dumping and some very dangerous chemicals. Detroit needs a US EPA visit to determine the level of cleaning the land needs. This is not marketable in the state it is in. I have a feeling Detroit will qualify for many Brownfield sites. I don't know about Superfund, but, maybe in areas especially along the river. PETROLEUM and oil spills. The river will be clearer, too.

There will be a lot of jobs generated by the clean up alone. The viable antiques throughout the city can be collected, appraised and sold at OPEN auction to pay the city's bills.

Has the city government of Detroit ever visited Lowell, Massachusetts?

Initially, the Fisher Body Plant will have to be evaluated as a Brownfield's site, but, if the building is sound it can be converted into a historic living space. Detroit might want to ask GM at that point if they have any interest in developing a museum at the entrance to the living space that would bring income to the structure and increased tax opportunity to the city. A museum would help pay for the expenses for the 'saleable' living space. I would love a loft in that building as soon as it was safe for occupation.

One other thing...

...that idea of concentrating city services to the most dense tax base is to relieve the demands on the city. The outlying city areas with fewer residents contributing to the tax base will have a fee for service option managed by the city.

The city services have to BALANCE their services with their income. So, the city has many options and to the residents whom CHOOSE to live in less densely populated areas of the city their costs will go up. That will encourage those residents to examine their income vs their expenses and move to better serviced areas. 

Market based solutions. No one needs to be laid off, their payrolls will be budgeted differently with some 'pay for service' being a part of it.

It isn't being mean, it is being practical to move from insoluble city assets to a balanced budget. Detroit is going to be surprised what will happen when they begin to spruce up their dense tax base and make it the most attractive area in the country for residing, playing and business.

Snyder needs to be impeached. If he can't honor the State Constitution he isn't qualified.

Snyder is violating the Public Trust. Detroit is being demonized. The complexion of the city government isn't pale enough. I mean that sincerely. There is a threat in this that victimizes African American leadership as incompetent. It is a convenient theme for Snyder, although he stands with his African American control freak emergency manager.

The circumstances Detroit faces is not all that unusual.

There is a huge difference between corruption and failure. Blanket corruption can lead to failure, but, that does not mean the entire Detroit government was incompetent. Here again, did corruption lead to the financial troubles of the city? Absolutely not. Anyone in the government guilty of breaking the law was investigated, removed and punished for crimes. That has nothing to do with Detroit's failure. Any wrong doing was not citywide and was not central to the city's failure.

Bankruptcy is not going to solve Detroit's problems. Bankruptcy will cause a fire sale and collapse of economic growth for the city.

When a city fails as Detroit has it is because it has lost it's tax base. That is what has occurred here. The reason the tax base is less than half at Detroit's height of prosperity is because of the floundering of the auto industry. There are reasons for that floundering and it has nothing to do with unions. Unions enhanced the quality of life of Michiganders and Detroiters and added to the tax base of the governments from federal to local.  

The heart of the problem might seem simple to some, but, it really isn't. When populations diminish in a city is not necessarily consolidated to one area of the city. In other words over half of Detroit's population is gone, but, that is through the entire city. That means city services do not end with low population. Citizens still have emergencies, they still need trash pick up and roads repaired. The problem Detroit has is the size of the city to the tax base it currently entertains. I am sure at some point the city government looked at the possibility of removing areas of the city to consolidate services, but, it isn't easy. If one section of the city is jettisoned the tax base it contributes is also jettisoned. It becomes a nearly impossible paradigm to manage. That is the reality of the city's government.

So, where does Detroit go from here?

Why not take a look at THE EXACT SAME PARADIGM faced by New York City in the 1970s. No major economic issues contributing to it, but, there was a significant fall in population, hence loss of tax base. Same exact thing Detroit is now facing. And, whom was the President of the United States of America during that time in the 1970s? Well, let's look.

December 8, 1975
Both sides claimed a victory, (click here) and both had a point. Finally offering a federal loan to New York City, President Ford denied that he had bailed out the municipality he had so often reprimanded for profligacy. "New York has bailed itself out," he declared. And he added with self-congratulation: "If we had shown any give, I think they wouldn't have made the hard decisions they have made."
New York officials took a different view. They thought they had finally convinced the country — and through the country the President — that New York had to be rescued. Governor Hugh Carey... 

New York City was in debt to the tune of over $9 billion. Those were 1975 dollars and not 2013 dollars. In the 1970s a million dollars still meant something, so $9.4 billion in debt was astronomical. 

There is a precedent for the help Detroit needs and Snyder didn't give a damn about that. He wants what he wants and no one should stand in his way, including the people of Michigan and their Constitution. I warned you about this guy before the election. He is rotten. There is no other description for him. 

Until 1986, the government of New York City continued using loan guarantees and direct loans to support the fiscally-troubled city. All the loans, loan premiums and fees have since been repaid.

New York City did a remarkable thing. They opened up gentrification and focused on the arts and brought revitalization to the city. They kept their ports, bridges and tourist areas alive and built on it. 

New York doesn't have gambling either. New Jersey does, but, NYC doesn't. There are a couple of very healthy casinos in Detroit. Now, there needs to be an assessment of the tax base, a concentration of city services to suppose the most dense tax base, zoning reassessment and a value to the city revisited. I see no reason why Detroit across the way from Canada can't be a pleasant and exciting city where corporate headquarters would find a good home. 
Midwestern Fortune 500 Companies (click here)

Detroit's city government is missing the boat. The nearest major theme park is in Illinois. What the heck is wrong with a Midwest Disneyland? Waterfront property can be converted into a boardwalk no different than the Jersey Shore.

The city government needs to study the region, come up with real market based / market SHARE options for increasing the income to the city and market that plan to the federal government. This is going to be easier than anyone realizes, they just need to get started. 

When one looks across the country, cities are growing. The FUTURE of the world is to develop city dwelling as a primary residence for many. There isn't enough space on Earth for sprawling suburbs. Detroit needs to ride the tide of the challenge of the future. The city government needs a vision, not destruction.

Detroit it not dead. It just needs a prince charming to wake it up.

When does jail time start? I hope he isn't getting an ankle bracelet and a call in schedule.

What bothers me most after the fact of causing increased danger to millions attending the Olympics, is the fact they tried to set up President Obama as a dishonest man.

This was a leak intended to destroy President Obama's reputation. It had nothing to do with integrity of journalism. It is about the lousiest stunt I have witnessed by the New York Times.

The 'idea' Mr. Risen put forward in willing disclosure was that President Obama was hiding his record from the people at the time of an election.

Mr. Risen is either dimwitted, pressured or disdains the President or any combination, because, President Obama could no more disclose the activities in this article than he could circle the moon while riding the cow that was jumping over it. President Obama, if he disclosed the information, would be compromising national security and the lives of millions attending the Olympics. So, Mr. Risen did President Obama a favor by disclosing in a way that would make him look like a dishonest man only to have him refute the same. 

Two men made the same decision. President Obama and Mr. Risen has the information to disclosure a CIA operation that found a threat to airline safety. The disclosure would result in outing a valuable CIA Agent. One made the correct decision in opting for silence and the safety of millions while the other played politics with lives hanging in the balance. THE TRUTH seems obvious to me. President Obama was not dishonest or hiding anything, he simply was the President. Why didn't Mr. Risen come to the same conclusion?

I find Mr. Risen's article, the willingness to print it and now to defend it more than reprehensible. Mr. Risen needs to do another disclosure and out a CIA agent that started this entire disaster, only this time the DOJ doesn't have to make it public.

I sincerely hope the profession of journalism is not shedding tears over this one. This is terrible journalism cloaked in martyrdom.

July 19, 2013
Charlie Savage

WASHINGTON — In a major ruling (click here) on press freedoms, a divided federal appeals court on Friday ruled that James Risen, an author and a reporter for The New York Times, must testify in the criminal trial of a former Central Intelligence Agency official charged with providing him with classified information.

In a 118-page set of opinions, two members of a three-judge panel for the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, in Richmond, Va., ruled that the First Amendment does not protect reporters who receive unauthorized leaks from being forced to testify against the people suspected of leaking to them. A district court judge who had ruled in Mr. Risen’s case had said that it did. 

“Clearly, Risen’s direct, firsthand account of the criminal conduct indicted by the grand jury cannot be obtained by alternative means, as Risen is without dispute the only witness who can offer this critical testimony,” wrote Chief Judge William Byrd Traxler Jr., who was joined by Judge Albert Diaz in Friday’s ruling. 

Mr. Risen has vowed to go to prison rather than testify about his sources and to carry any appeal as far as the Supreme Court. But some legal specialists said an appeal to the full appeals court was a likely first step. Mr. Risen referred a request to comment to his lawyer, Joel Kurtzberg, who wrote in an e-mail: “We are disappointed by and disagree with the court’s decision. We are currently evaluating our next steps."...

Alito's disclosure is late?

Did his tardy disclosure effect other decisions he has made? 

Alito is not really a Supreme Court Justice in the way most Americans think of the Supreme Court. He is a capitalist and it shows.

Yes, that's quintupled with a "q." (click here) According to the Center for Public Integrity, an investigative journalism nonprofit, Justice Samuel Alito's net worth jumped from between $380,000 and $1.1 million in 2011 to between $2.3 million and $6.2 million in 2012. The gulf in the estimates is due to the fact that federal officeholders such as justices and members of Congress must report only the range of their assets and liabilities, not the exact figures. Regardless of the exact amount, we know one thing: Justice Alito made a lot of money last year. 

According to Public Integrity, the bump comes from "previously unreported PNC Bank accounts valued between $250,001 and $515,000, along with two Edward Jones investment accounts." Alito's investment portfolio includes holdings in Oracle Corp., a software firm; OEG Energy Corp.; Boeing; and Caterpillar. He also has some money in Chevron, which might be why he recused himself from a case last year that involved the company. Alito made $27,000 from teaching at Duke University and Penn State. (There are, however, limits to how much money a Supreme Court Justice can make on the side.)

There may be a reason for the challenge of building construction in some nations.

I am not laughing.

With every merger there is downsizing and loss of employment. The EU should work that into their formula as well.

EU mergers and takeovers (July 22) (click here) 

BRUSSELS, July 22 (Reuters) - The following are mergers under review by the European Commission and a brief guide to the EU merger process:


-- U.S. diversified manufacturer Crane Co to buy U.S. manufacturer of electronic bill acceptors and transaction mechanisms MEI Conlux from private equity firms Bain Capital and Advantage Partners (approved July 19)

-- German insurer Allianz and Canadian investor Borealis to buy Czech gas pipeline operator Net4Gas from Germany's RWE AG (approved July 17)

-- Private equity firm The Carlyle Group LP to buy packaging products supplier Chesapeake Holdings S.A.R.L. (notified July 16/deadline Aug. 21/simplified)

-- Spanish telecoms provider Telefonica, Spanish lender Caixabank and Spain's Banco Santander to set up an advertising services joint venture (notified July 11/deadline Aug. 16)...



The European Commission has 25 working days after a deal is filed for a first-stage review. It may extend that by 10 working days to 35 working days, to consider either a company's proposed remedies or an EU member state's request to handle the case.

Most mergers win approval but occasionally the Commission opens a detailed second-stage investigation for up to 90 additional working days, which it may extend to 105 working days.


Under the simplified procedure, the Commission announces the clearance of uncontroversial first-stage mergers without giving any reason for its decision. Cases may be reclassified as non-simplified -- that is, ordinary first-stage reviews -- until they are approved.

"Good Night, Moon"

The full moon.

14.1 day old moon

99.5% lit

Everyone just loved the Supermoon. 

by KING 5 News

Posted on July 21, 2013 at 3:32 PM

Updated today at 3:37 PM 

SEATTLE - Skies (click here) should be clear on Monday night so we will be able to see another gorgeous "super moon."
EarthSky says astronomers will call this moon the perigee moon - the moon's closest point to Earth for this monthly orbit - but everyone else will call it a super moon.
The full moon falls Monday at 11:16 p.m. Pacific Daylight Time, one day after July’s lunar perigee.

This super moon won’t be as “super” as the supermoon in June. Skygazers took some incredible photos of last month's super moon.

KING 5 Meteorologist Jim Guy says we will have clear conditions in most areas.

"Shutterbugs, get out your cameras. It's going to be clear - a beautiful night to view it," he said

EarthSky says in North America, the July full moon is often called the Buck Moon, Thunder Moon or Hay Moon because at this time of year, buck deer grow velvety antlers, thunderstorms rage and farmers put hay into their barns.