, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,















This piece is simply called Goddess, and is from the Cypro-Archaic period mid 6th Century B.C. It can be viewed at the Louvre.

It’s a bit on the soggy side today but they say the rain will be moving off soon. It is however chilly again, and that is getting most depressing. It seems it’s never to be warm and stay that way.  We have tantalizing glimpses of summer then the cold returns. I am having digestive “issues” and so have decided to beg off the cleaning duties today, as I’m rather out of sorts. The Contrarian has risen to the occasion as he usually does and is doing the cooking today.  I’m putting up this blog which helps keep me occupied and away from my troubles. A bland diet for a few days should put things in order again. We are doing our standard holiday fare for Monday, ribs, potato salad and pea salad.

Nothing is happening in the garden so far, but the Contrarianis his usual impatient self in that regard. Each day he goes for a tour and reports that the corn is not up yet. Of course it was just planted Monday or Tuesday, and he grew up on a farm so he knows better. This does not dissuade him from his daily progress reports however. So far our plants have not been eaten. I found a dead baby rabbit in the bathroom a couple of days ago, thanks no doubt to Spencer the killer cat. That was the same day I was chasing him through the house with his latest dead bird, this time a goldfinch. He specializes in wrens usually.

On to the news of the day:


We in this country, with the blessings of our dear Supreme Court, continue to murder in the name of law, and we call it fair punishment for crimes committed. The death penalty is a cause near and dear to my heart, having been a criminal defense attorney for more than 20 years. I know at first hand the incredible injustice of the “justice” system. I know of the miscarriages that occur, and know first hand of at least two cases in which innocents were convicted. One was later released after serving four or five years. The other is presumably still there having now served more than 25 by my recall. Even when the system corrects an error and releases an innocent, is this justice? Read about how prisoners newly released try to cope with their new found freedom at Alternet‘s exemplary post by Liliana Segura.

Meanwhile, some states continue to pursue a course of public education designed to move American students farther down the competitive ladder in science. Louisiana in its infinite lack of wisdom has passed state legislation that allows the teaching of non-science in the guise of “supplemental materials.”  These bills are called “academic freedom” bills and are being offered mostly in the deep south bible belt where backwards thinking is still all too common. They are pushed by reactionary right religious organizations who are determined that Christianity will be taught one way or another. Apparently they do not feel that they can teach Christian principles themselves in their respective churches.

John McCain has no integrity, none. Yesterday he lambasted Obama  claiming he knows zero about veterans rights since he hasn’t served. You can read his entire rant at Blue Girl, Red State. It’s an embarrassing loss of cool once again, as McCain tries to justify his refusal to vote for Webb’s new GI Bill. Of course as she points out in a earlier post, some of the folks that are on his bill aren’t veterans either, but that of course is not mentioned. Worse yet, McCain skipped completely the latest war funding vote because he decided to spend the day with the Governor of California. And that would be Arnold who admittedly went AWOL from his duties in Austria to compete in a bodybuilding meet. Seems old old Mac has trouble remembering things these days. This subject is huge on the internet blogging world today. Think Progress has some more details that might be of interest.

I sadly don’t often have the opportunity to praise my Church. Today I can. Both the archdiocese and the Sisters of Mercy are on record in Iowa calling for immigration reformafter the ugly raid in Pottsville. Calling the policies of the Governmentboth disastrous and inhumane, the Sisters call for changes that insure that dignity and human rights are respected.

If you are interested in learning a bit about yawning, slip by C’est La Vie and Josie will give you the ins and outs. It’s an annoying thing to endure some times, especially when you are trying to watch something really good on TV and keep being distracted by uncontrolled yawning. And it’s contagious as well, as we all know.

I don’t know about you but I love beets. I can’t eat a lot because of their high sugar content, but this recipe looked so good. I don’t like the bleeding idea in this recipe, but if you grow the golden ones, it would be absolutely perfect. In any case, its a great little summer salad. Coconut & Lime brings us Beet Potato Salad.

History News Network offers us a fine piece on the question of the Confederacy’s treasury which has long been the topic of speculation. Did it exist, how much did it contain, and more importantly, where is it? There were supposed to be some 35 kegs of Mexican silver that have never been accounted for. Read this fascinating account and decide what you think.

A pear jelly recipe is offered at Homemade Jam and Jelly blog. I really enjoy making jelly and jam and I find it quite easy to do, and frankly, I have to because I can control what type of sugar is used. I’ll file it away with my others choice jam and jelly recipes. This year I’m planning on making crab apple jelly if our huge tree produces a good set of fruit. They say apples are setting very well this year in Iowa.

Have you heard? McCain has renounced his friends and spiritual advisors, Hagee and Parlsey. His minions are across the landscape claiming that it didn’t take Mac 20 years to do so either. But of course that begs the question. Mac actively  sought the endorsement of Hagee. And Hagee’s pronouncements in all their vulgar ugliness existed well before. So does McCain have no vetting process? Inside-Out the Beltway has another great piece on the subject. Given that McCain has shown us again and again that he has no ability to assess the integrity of those he takes on board  his campaign, why should anyone trust him with the government? Simple answer: NOBODY.

Inspired by antique quilts has a look at a new quilting book. I don’t buy these because I simply don’t have that kind of disposable income, and you can get most patterns free on the web. But I sure like to look at the lovely pictures which do give you ideas as well as that ubiquitous inspiration.

The reason why I love the National Reviewis that they are wingnuts of the first order. The degree of their attack shows the degree of their fear that all will be lost this November. Given this post, I would guess they have given up.  Rich Lowry offers us a complete article claiming that Obama is gay-marriage’s best friend based on one word, and that word is “respect.” Obama said that he “‘respected’ the decision of the California Supreme Court.” With that alone, Lowry concocts an entire post of conjecture, supposition, and innuendo. Too funny for words. I’m still waiting for somebody to explain to me what marriage has to be protected from. Any takers?

If you would like to see a broader discussion of gay marriage visit On Faith wherein this issue is debated and you of course can add your two cents. The usual suspects are panelists. The comments are great, ranging from the outrageously idiotic to the intelligent and well thought out.  

Don’t know if you heard or not but Johnny Mac has invited some folks to his house for barbecue this weekend. Some of those invited are supposed to be on the short list for consideration of VEEP. One of those is the kid Jindal who is a whopping  37 years old and about as right wing as you can get. I mean he is a wingnut. American Prospect has a very thorough vetting on him today. Don’t miss it. I think he would be a grand choice, one we can all get behind to campaign against.

Tip Junkie has amassed a bunch of tutorials for you. There are ones to create a diaper cake for those baby showers, one to make soap, and about six or more others. Take a look and see if there is anything there that peaks your artistic interests.

The best mulch is a living mulch. That’s what I always say. Well, I guess i don’t always say it, but I have learned to plant in patterns that make the plants kind of help cover the area which does help the weeds to be kept at a minimum. Veggie Gardening Tips has plenty of advice as to how to do this technically speaking. Take a look and save your aching back.


“The problem with people who have no vices is that generally you can be pretty sure they’re going to have some pretty annoying virtues.”  Elizabeth Taylor

“It has been said that man is a rational animal. All my life I have been searching for evidence which could support this.” Bertrand Russell

“A wise man can see more from the bottom of a well than a fool can from a mountain top .”  Unknown


More of those bumper stickers:

CAUTION: This car will be left behind during rapture

Coffee, Chocolate, Men. Some things are just better rich.

Consciousness: that annoying time between naps.

Conserve toilet paper – use both sides.

Constipated People Don’t Give A Shit.

Death is God’s way of telling you not to be such a wise guy.

Despite The Cost Of Living, Have You Noticed How It Remains So Popular?

Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy and good with ketchup.

Do they ever shut up on your planet.

Eagles may soar, but weasels don’t get sucked into jet engines.


John McCain is going to be the Republican nominee for president, so he is now auditioning candidates for vice president. And they’re visiting at his home in Arizona, which I believe is called the Lazy Artery. Wait, I believe it’s a ranch. I think it is the Double Hernia, or maybe it is called the Rancho Prostateo. David Letterman

A California biotechnology company is auctioning off five opportunities to clone your family dog, with the bidding starting at $100,000. The first bid came in from the parents of a boy named Timmy who want enough cloned copies of their collie that they never have to worry about Timmy falling down a well again.

It’s not Cannes, but the city of Dammam in Saudi Arabia is holding that country’s first-ever film festival. The most popular movies at the Saudi festival are “Sand By Me,” “Like Oil For Chocolate” and “Sheiks and the City.” – Paul Seaburn, Spring, Texas