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Administrative Law Judge
Corporate Training Specialist  MBA , JD

Associate Legal Counsel to Police Commissioner William Bratton

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

We are approaching the Catholic Holy Day of Good Friday. I still am not sure why they call it good but it represents one of the most famous scenes artists liked to paint of the Last Supper where Jesus sat to dinner with his 12 apostles. For many it represents a night where families get together and remember their faith over a dinner with family and friends eating a variety of fish. Fish that used to be plentiful in our various oceans around the globe. The Bible is full of references to the lonely fishermen. The men are no longer lonely and the oceans are being depleted of fish now.

Currently there are 4,000 industrial fishing boats licensed to fish in the Indian Ocean alone at any given time sweeping up   anything and everything within their reach. Sharks in particular are being harvested for their fins. There is only one small vessel to monitor 460 square miles of water.  The industrial fishing boats are easy to find because they fish and are brightly lit working the ocean 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. There is always blood on the sides of the boat being washed back into the ocean. The massive boats are built to stay working for up to 6 months at a time using massive freezers for their killed fish.

They use 3,000 feet of nets with 300 hooks on each net. That means that each day just one of the boats can have a million hooks in the water. It is a super effective way to catch practically everything swimming in that section of the ocean at a time. It does not discriminate. It catches everything. Near Madagascar, it is a big problem. Shark fins are valuable. They cut the fins off the shark and throw the fish back in the ocean to drift and die. Selling one ton of fins per month brings in $200,000 in profits. The global market is even worse. It is estimated that 100 million sharks are killed each year. When the sharks go away, everything else seems to change.

Every year a greater proportion of species are collapsing. These boats are very effective in catching fish in huge numbers. They are very unselected. By the middle of this century many species of fish will be depleted. Where is the United Nations to monitor our seas? This murder of our natural resource of fish is happening everywhere including in the United States. Eight years ago red snapper was down in the Gulf of Mexico was down by 97% but in 2007, things thankfully changed. The good thing that happened was a thought out plan called a Catch Share Program. It started with scientists finding out the health of a fish population. Based on that data they then determine what sensitive stocks must be protected so the fish populations can reproduce and thrive.
The remainder of the total catch is then divided up among the fishing community of small boat local fishermen. They own shares like the Stock Market. Over time as the fish population grows and becomes healthier, their shares also appreciate. When they do stock assessments and they see more fish in the ocean, they raise the allowable catch. For a local fisherman a good day years ago was 500 pounds. Now they are catching 10,000 pounds in a day and the fish are healthy and plentiful. Why isn’t this system being implemented around the globe?

Amanda Leland the Oceans Director,   from the Environmental Defense Fund who initiated the Gulf program says, places globally do not have stable governments,  they   don’t have a lot of rules or science. They have no plan to manage their fish populations over the long term. It is in places like Tanzania that need regulations the most. We may have found some solution here on one American shore but if we are truly a world fearless about their religions, how about we save the world so we can practice our religious rituals of fish dinners. 

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

It is called Holy Week in the Catholic Religion. The time between Palm Sunday and Easter. I will not talk about religion although I should. I am afraid that some stranger will chop off my head if I do. Yes, in this day and age of sophisticated ways to communicate, the western world has to live in fear of communicating. We are at an all time low when even our government is not equally represented by the opinions of its people. An all Republican congress is wrong. So, in the spirit of prayer and revelation I will choose to discuss church music.

It was on January 11, 1885, one hundred and twenty years ago that Lawrence Hammond was born in Evanston, Illinois. He was a mechanical, engineer to make a living but he was a lifelong inventor. His early creations included a tick-less spring driven clock, an early 3-Dimensional movie and a bridge table that automatically shuffled and dealt the cards. His biggest breakthrough came in 1934 when he patented the Organ that bears his name.  It was next to a device known as a tone wheel. The Hammond organ produced sounds that sounded like a full scale pipe organ only found in churches or places of worship. This week the pipe organs will be in full force because it is Holy Week.

Hammond quickly became a big seller because you could now get this unique sound anywhere concealed in a manageable box on stage or even in your home.  The Organ was used by amateurs, small churches and radio soap operas. Countless pop musicians still use the organs in their bands. A famous song was Whiter Shade of Pale by Procol Harum, or the keyboard talent of Keith Emerson of Emerson Lake and Palmer or the soulful sounds of Bob Marley’s No Woman No Cry. All made famous by the sounds of the unique Hammond Organ.

Lawrence Hammond died in 1973 at the age of 78 with more than 100 Patents to his credit. Hammond organs continue to be sold to this day but now by using up to date digital technology. Not a bad legacy for a musical pioneer who couldn’t play a note.  So in this week set aside each year for religious reflection. Maybe we should be thinking more about the organ than religious stories from the past. These days there is too much strife over religious wars and division than any kind of peace. Unfortunately we still live in fear of brutality, force, persecution and malice for there to be any time for peace and prosperity. I think I will listen to some organ music.

Monday, March 30, 2015

Leave Hillary alone! Our government is run by Republicans now and we will surely be in big trouble once again. I have noticed under the Democratic Administrations of Clinton and Obama that our financial situation as a country has improved. All our debt was from the Republican- Bush years. Let’s face it. With all the government spending for poor people that Democratic Administrations love to provide, they still manage to balance the budgets better than Republicans. Republican Tom Cruz has already thrown his hat into the Presidential race boasting that he wants to abolish the IRS and women’s right to choose what to do with their bodies. He has done nothing to improve this country.

I guess the best way to prove my point is to look at California today. Republican tough guy actor Arnold Schwarzeneggar (what an awful name) didn’t make anyone’s day better while he was in political office. He was too busy making a baby with his housekeeper  We needed to bring back 76 year old Jerry Brown to fix California. He has had 4 terms as California’s Governor. Six years ago the state’s home prices were way down and the government had soaring debt.  Many people were giving up hope and going out of business.  Who would even want to be Governor of such a sorry stare?

In 2010 Jerry Brown wanted his old job back. The state boasts the world’s eight economy. It is bigger than Russia’s and now boasted a surplus last year. How did he do it? He regularly hosts dignitaries from other countries since California is now considered a high tech superpower. The secret to his success is to raise taxes while cutting spending. He pushes Democrats and Republicans to accept his cuts. Back in 1976 he said that he doesn’t like to spend government money. His father Pat Brown was elected Governor in 1958. At that time he was studying to become a Jesuit Priest. Politics became his true calling.

In 1974 at the age of 36, Jerry Brown won his father’s old job. Governor of the largest state in the union. He didn’t use the jets and limos that Ronald Regan used but traveled in a simple car. He had ideas that were ahead of his time. He wanted alternative energy then and was an advocate of the environment.  He ran three times to become President. Each time he did not get full support from his own Democratic establishment. He won his Governor job back easily getting 59% of the vote. Now he has an ambitious plan to approve a $7.5 billion dollar plan in the drought stricken state to improve new reservoirs and dams and water tunnels. He wants a high speed rail line from San Francisco to Los Angeles.

Washington needs to learn from some good Democratic leaders and save this country from its own bias.   

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Inspiration is a wonderful thing and if one can be inspired by something as easy as reading a book then life is great. Sometimes the people who inspire us or comfort us don’t even realize what an influence they have on us. Then there is life itself that can be full of rejection. How do we have the courage to live on and have the patience to realize that tomorrow is another   day that can bring better things for our lives? It is called hope.

He is known as a failed cartoonist who writes a book for adults and it winds up on the children’s best seller list. He is Jeff Kinney who is on his way with book 10 of his mega-selling Diary of a Wimpy Kid series. The 9th book that is in stores now is called The Long Haul. It is like a nightmare family road trip. It could be a comedy show on TV but it is not. It is a fun way to keep kids reading. We all know that any family road trip that lasts for more than 3 hours will end up badly for someone in that car.  The cover image is Greg stuck way back in the Mini-van with a pile of   luggage. Every kid can identify with that image because we have all been there.  

Greg is Greg Heffley who is perpetually stuck in middle school as he put it, “With a bunch of morons.” He is always being embarrassed by his parents and he has two awful brothers. A nasty older one and a tattle –tail toddler. Greg is a very nervous sort of sneaky, fearful, bullied and bullying protagonist. A kid we can all identify with at some point in our lives.  Why have a main character who is not the least bit heroic? The author said that when he was writing Wimpy Kid he was reading Harry Potter who is brave, magical and powerful.  We aren’t any of these things as kids. So he wanted to create a character who is more like him. Yes, we need a good ordinary kid story.

Most of us were average kids who had wimpy moments. Jeff Kinney grew up outside Washington DC dreaming of becoming a cartoonist. He actually created a successful comic strip for the University of Maryland’s campus newspaper but when he tried to land a cartooning   job after graduation, he tried for about 3 years of getting rejected. Finally he got a day job designing on line games.  On the side he started illustrating and designing A Diary of a Wimpy Kid. The first draft wasn’t for kids and was 1,300 pages long. It was meant to be a piece of nostalgia for adults. He worked on that draft for 8 years.

In 2006 at a comic book convention he showed some of his pages to a editor from Abrams Books mostly known for its elegant books on art. The editor loved it and said it was for kids. Jeff never thought of it that way. When The Wimpy Kid was marketed to a younger audience, it took off fast. He made the New York Times Bestseller List and has been on the list for more than 5 years straight. His wife and two kids have no problem with their successful life. He is now the executive producer of 3 films based on the series now. To stay close to his readers he travels all over the country visiting schools.

Some critics hate his simple illustrations and call the content literary junk food. They are not the books you want your kid to end up reading but they are the books you want them to start reading so they want to read for the rest of their life. There are more than 150 million copies of his books in print making this author a very rich man. So, never give up. Tomorrow is another day. Maybe a good one for you. With his wealth he is building a book store, coffee shop, cafĂ© and community meeting room in his adopted town of Plainville, Massachusetts. He will call the book store An Unlikely Story because that is what his own life story has been. 

Saturday, March 28, 2015

This is what you can do. Get on line and go to safercar.gov and use your Vin number of your car to search for recalls that you might have not gotten in the mail or that your dealer didn’t bother to tell you about when you bought your car. Also use my free CARFAX to find out more about the manufacturer’s stand on your individual vehicle. Used car dealers have always had a reputation for selling perhaps not so perfect cars under the shiny hoods. Now we even have to watch out for new car dealers selling cars on the recall list. Practically every new General Motors car has a recall on them in the last few years. It is bad enough they sell bad cars, we can’t trust a new car dealer too? There is no integrity left in this world anymore.

Many Americans can’t buy used cars anymore. They are all unsafe. Between all the floods ruining cars there is also salt damage to the undercarriage of cars making them corrode even faster from the new chemicals spread on streets to melt snow quickly.  Now many Americans unknowingly are buying new cars that are subject to safety recalls. The law says they should have been fixed before they were sold.  Just last year alone there were 64,000 safety recalls ranging from power steering problems to airbags defects.   By law the dealership is obligated to fix these potentially dangerous defects before a new car is sold.

Legally a dealer does not have to disclose that there has been a recall on a vehicle, they just have to fix the problems before it is sold. You go into a dealership and many will lie to you. Go to the website and check before you buy. They will try to tell you there are no safety recalls because the car is new. That can be a false statement. The website will tell you if the recall status is incomplete. This is not a problem with one bad apple in a dealership. An investigation has found that hundreds of new cars from multiple manufacturers have been sold with unfixed safety recalls in 43 states. Incredibly the National Highway Safety Commission which is headquartered in our nation’s Capital only found 2 bad dealerships in 2014.

Last night I had a nice conversation on line with a woman who read my blog on Senator Tom Cruz and thought I was harsh on him. Maybe before he throws his hat into a Presidential race, as a Senator there for only 2 years get on this problem and have our nation’s laws enforced and stop talking about religion and women’s body parts? This is a very serious problem and the only elected official talking about this problem is Senator Ed Markey who isn’t even trying to push himself out there as a Presidential Candidate. Senator Markey sits on the subcommittee on consumer protection. He agrees that NHTSA dropped the ball and is not doing enough to make sure American cars are being sold safe.

Ted Cruz should be talking about dissolving NHTSA and not dissolving the IRS just because faith based schools were audited. The National Highway Safety Commission blamed their inadequacy on budget constraints. One thing for sure, everyone has an excuse and blames the problem on someone else. Get on the website yourself and do what you can to protect your family. Not too many people care anymore.

Friday, March 27, 2015

We see daily commercials on TV boasting about the luxurious cruise to an exotic beautiful clean island in the sun somewhere. They make it all look so enticing and I am sure many of you go on cruises often. There is a new location that I think is a bit too exotic for me. A cruise that now will take you to waters hardly gone to near land no one really can inhabit. It all truly is the last place on earth that should belong to nature and does. In fact, a cruise to this destination can only fill me with horror. Probably the closest we would get to a real life Survivor. What if we must leave the safety and comfort of the ship?
The ship is called the Silver Galapagos and by now you guessed it. It travels to the very exotic untamed Galapagos Island. They boast that passengers come on land for twice-daily excursions that may include coming face to face with sea lions and I say God only knows what else! Is the premise to allow you to keep going on the island till you get chewed up by something? I am not sure that I am that adventurous.  Granted the islands are known for wildlife and natural beauty but must we take our chances trying to mingle with wildlife we have no control over? They advertise, “Now, Silversea lets you commune with creatures amid luxurious creature comforts” Does that mean a giant lizard will be in my   cabin?

I guess that if you are a brat and have been everywhere else in the world,   this might interest you. The destination is definitely for the adventurous and the healthy because you will be wasting your time and money unless you do indeed hike and snorkel to see all that nature provides us on this paradise on earth. Hikers say that there are Blue-footed boobies everywhere. They look like ducks but with literally blue feet. Atypical day would start with a stroll along the beach that is full of sea lions. Then go to a nearby inlet for snorkeling with giant schools of razor surgeon fish and other colorful creatures, followed by a hike down a rocky trail in search of yellow-tinged land iguanas and those blue footed birds. I would be extremely leery of those razor mouthed fish. Since there are no people living there, there is no fishing. Sea life is plentiful.

After your long day of adventure it is time to return to your boat called the Silver Galapagos. No this is not a three football field long thing with water slides and rock climbing fake walls stocked full of 5,000 passengers that go up 18 stories from the sea. This a elegant wood-lined martini waiting 100 passenger vessel.  This is being billed as the first luxury expedition ship in the region. The vessel is 4,077 tons of luxury services all included with butler service, gourmet restaurant and spa. It is a new way to rough it in the unknown especially because we all first heard of this wildlife destination from the writings of the British scientist Charles Darwin.

This is all new. The place is near the equator about 600 miles off the Ecuadorean coast. The Galapagos has never been known as a luxury retreat. The allure of the mostly uninhabited grouping of 19 islands has been the giant and healthy dinosaur like lizards. The luxury line Silversea is softening all that ruggedness with a ship as elegant as it is rugged. Unveiled in 2013, the Silver Galapagos was created through the top-to-bottom overhaul of an existing Galapagos based vessel, the Galapagos Explorer II. The makeover brought such rare for the Galapagos amenities as marble bathrooms in cabins, a fitness center and an outdoor Jacuzzi.

Still Silver sea isn’t tinkering with the basic formula of a visit to the destination, 97% of which is preserved as a national park and open only to small, guided tours. Like other Galapagos based expedition vessels, the Silver Galapagos moves from island to island , depositing passengers on land by motorized  Zodiac rafts  for twice-daily, wildlife-focused excursions led by park-licensed naturalists. I wouldn’t want to fall off that raft or miss pick up time at night.   

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Will there be any competition in American foods? I guess not. A new merger of companies has happened yet again making these groups of food products the fifth-largest food and drink giant.  I am talking about anything with Kraft on it also owned by anything with Heinz on it and when they decide to make smaller packages for higher prices there will be little much we can do   about it. All the stuff on the grocery shelves will be owned by the same company. You can’t buy something different even if you wanted to.  What is worse is that most of it is too salty or too sweet to ever be considered healthy American food.

We are talking about Lunchables, Lea & Perrins, Velveeta, JELL-O, Oscar Mayer, Bagel Bites, MAYO, Smart Ones, PLANTERS, Kool-Aid, PHILADELPHIA, Maxwell House, Ore Ida, CLASSICO and HP. The numbers go through the roof. The merger between Kraft and Heinz they are already the 3rd largest North American food and beverage company.  They are the 5th largest food and beverage  company globally.  Let’s put that into numbers.  They get $28 billion dollars in revenue. They are worth $8 billion dollars in brands.  Essentially they can squash any start up similar brand company of food or beverage off the drawing board forget about giving anything new shelf space in your supermarket. Yes slather your fake Kraft VELVETA food with some Heinz relish. Ugh!

It is an important merger because each company is huge and comes to the table with their own successes.  Kraft has 98% penetration in all North American households. Heinz has 50or more countries where its products have a Number 1 or Number 2 market share.  Kraft has a 80% awareness in 14 key international markets. It sounds like they are already doing pretty well but together they hope to cut costs, grow more internationally (like we didn’t ruin the world enough when we shoved McDonalds down their throats) and evolve into a more consumer –focused company. Yes, don’t stop till there are Lunchables in every refrigerator globally. Ugh!

The stock to have was Kraft. The news propelled the stock price 36% from $21.83 a share to close yesterday at $83.15 a share. A great pay day.  It just proves that when you don’t know what to buy or sell in the stock market, just follow Warren Buffet and you will be alright. His influence was essential in sealing this deal.  My problem is how these two old school companies full of processed and preserved and packaged foods be popular with consumers demand for   healthier natural   fresh food products?
As with any big bully merger jobs always suffer. They expect to cut costs and to be able to eliminate 7,400 jobs by 2017. How sad that you could possibly be out of a job being forced out by a condiment like Ketchup. Not just any ketchup.  Heinz Ketchup, the one preferred by most folks. Sigh. Then with no job in sight be forced to eat Kraft macaroni and cheese with Heinz Ketchup on it because you can’t afford anything else to eat. For some, the merger will be a nightmare.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

I didn’t grow up with no computer and I didn’t have any chit-chatty sites to say hi to people on. Now people are meeting more people on their computers than in real fleshy life. One of the most remarkable sites is Facebook. We all saw it rise out of infancy.  We all saw the movie. We all watched the drama of its founders. When it got on the stock exchange at $35 a share we all laughed. What a rip off! Facebook doesn’t manufacture anything; how can they even put a worth to it?

Well, Facebook is now bigger than ever. Shares are soaring into record territory on investor confidence in the 11 year old’s company’s advertising business. They are predicting that Facebook’s revenue will rise 37% this year   to $17billion dollars.  Their price target is up to over $91 dollars.  This week the stock closed at a record $85 dollars a share. Boy were we wrong.

This social-networking giant is poised to take on a large slice of an ever-expanding   mobile advertising market in the United States, which is expected to rise 50% to $28 billion this year according to researcher eMarketer.   They are better positioned ever to sell digital ads and compete with Google, says chief strategist Craig   Palli at Fiksu, a mobile-marketing company that works with Facebook. “They’ve gone from a social network to a comprehensive ad-teck   platform ”with Newsfeed, Instagram, , WhatsApp and eventually, Oculus.  I have gotten used to being hit with something new on a regular basis.  These places seem to make money instantly. What exactly do they manufacture? I have to stop asking that question and just go with the flow I guess.

CEO Mark Zuckerberg has been busy spending profits and has gone on a shopping spree.  The company has gone on an acquisition spree spending nearly $25 billion dollars this past three years on mobile-messaging servicing WhatsApp ($21.8 billion), virtual-reality startup Oculus($2 billion), and photo-sharing  app maker Instagram ($1 billion) . These additions to the company has transformed the social network into a multi platform, social-media powerhouse.

Now Facebook seems to have become multiple apps and businesses across mobile, ad tech and virtual reality. It is so much more now. Mr. Zuckerberg should explain to us how the hell all this is going to connect together? To add to all this, last week Facebook that now had 1.3 billion members added a feature to its popular Messenger app that lets people send money to friends.  The feature is free, but analysts see potential for money making down the road. Sure, once we all get hooked on that, they will probably add on fees. Who knows.

All I know is that I had the phone in the kitchen with the long spiral wire to talk to people. It was a simpler time.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Cruz already gives me the Blues! Normally I hate talking about politics and especially do not want to talk about Presidential candidates 2 years before the election but this idiot has already declared that he is the first guy on line to run in the race. Even Donald Trump is smart enough to know that this is the time to hire exploratory committees to see if you are popular enough to get the votes to run in the race. He cancelled his $350,000 popular show The Celebrity Apprentice for next year to concentrate on the possibility of running.

Who is Ted Cruz anyway? He is a Republican Junior Senator on the job for less than 2 years from Texas. You would think he would want to do something notable as a Senator before he tried to climb the next ring of a ladder in his career. He has time. He is only 44 years old. It already seems that he is more career driven than caring for anything significant being done about our troubled country. He announced his wishes in a 30 second video on Twitter and then explained further why he gives me the blues in a speech at Liberty University where students were wearing Rand Paul shirts in the front row. I guess Cruz was too busy saying “Pick Me” to even find some students who want him and see that they get front row seats.
He should also take note that there are other possible Republican candidates that have better fundraising networks and stronger institutional support. In the Senate he has been more of an agitator than a legislature   where John McCain, a fellow Republican called him a   ”wacko bird.” But name calling aside and disorganization aside it is his beliefs and comments that give me the blues. However, like Obama who is a smooth speaker, Cruz has good skills as a debater. He was named U.S. National Speaker of the Year in 1992 at Princeton University. He out-did a strong contender by aligning himself with the popular Tea Party to get his Senate seat in 2012. Now he hopes to be President by cozying up to the large church based evangelical groups in Washington to get elected.

He is pushing his Christian conservatism on America by speaking at places founded by the evangelical leader Jerry Falwell. What ever happened to the rule of our Constitutional founders to separate church and state?  Isn’t there enough problems over people pushing their religions on people that we don’t need that in our country too?  Much of the beauty of America is that people of all religions can live here in peace and equality. Please don’t change that here Mr. Cruz! In his speech he said, “God isn’t done with America” What the hell does that mean? Is that some kind of threat? Whose   God is he talking about? Sometimes   I thank God for a nice couple of shots of Jack Daniels on the rocks. Don’t tell me what I feel like worshiping man!
His speech had the ring of the religious testimony   of an evangelical church. So go get your own church and leave my country out of it! He declared his opposition to abortion and his support of traditional marriage. Well then he needs a reality check that there is a population of Americans that are of all genders that favor any kind of marriage and that women really would like to make their own decisions when it comes to their uterus. How about we start talking about sterilizing men who do not provide all the bare assed kids in America with no child support or parent at home? Who is going to raise all the unwanted kids?

He emotionally described how his embrace of Jesus saved his parents’ marriage. Now we all know that Bush used to have conversations with Jesus but this guy has a father who hugged Jesus. Wow! What did he really look like? His father Rafael, is a pastor at a suburban Dallas church, fled Castro’s Cuba in 1957. Cruz’s Cuban-American heritage could be a selling point for the Republican Party as it tries to reach out to Hispanic voters, although his hard line stance on immigration could be a complication with voters. Although I hate his beliefs, he comes to the party with a great educational background.

He graduated from Princeton, and then from Harvard Law School, magna cum laude, before clerking at the Supreme Court for Chief Justice William Rehnquist. It makes me get the blues to see such a smart man say and do so many stupid things after one speech. In this speech he said he would abolish the IRS and secure the borders meanwhile he and his father benefited greatly from coming to America. He said he is relying on the power of religious conservatives to rise to power in this country and take it over. Is he suggesting religious wars on our shores? Sure he said these outrageous views at the largest Christian University in America. Let’s see how well he does when he decides to mouth off out side of his own backyard.

Cruz is also   outspokenly   opposed to Obama care.   So he wants no abortions and no   heath care.  How is that to be done? His wife Heidi contributed over one million dollars of her money from her career to his campaign and took a un-paid leave of absence from her job as a Managing Director at Goldman-Sacks. I got the blues.

Monday, March 23, 2015

There is always a scam somewhere. One of the most recent ones caught was a currency trading scam. In the multitrillion –dollar currency market, just a fraction of a penny difference between two currencies can mean hundreds of thousands of dollars in profit and bank currency traders were brazen exploiting the system’s weaknesses. This is how the currency trading scam worked. They should make a movie about this plan.

The currency market trades about $5 trillion each day-more than 100 times more than the New York Stock Exchange’s $49 billion in daily trades. Inside this sprawling market, participants can make bets on the direction of one currency against another, and reap millions from relatively small fluctuations.
Banks and other investors need to value their currency holdings daily. To do so, they rely on a daily fixing price. Many traders place their bets at the fixing price for others, the fixing price determines their profits or losses.

We all know that one daily fixing price is the World Markets/Reuters fix, which measures the British pound against the   dollar at 4.P.M. British time. Another is the European Central Bank fix, which measures the euro against other currencies, typically at 1:15 p.m. British time. In both cases the fixing price   is determined by market action at the time of the fix.

This is how the scam worked. According to regulators, settlements with six banks   recently, traders would manipulate the fixing price, often seconds before the fix, by making large purchases or sales, pushing   prices up or down. These massive buy and   sell orders would help the companies lock in gains, often at the expense of their customers.

So who cares? Well we all should care and someone should tighten the reins on the guys doing this stuff. I know that most people’s exposure to the currency market is when they travel.  The rogue’s traders’ schemes   would have a tiny impact on what you get when you buy or sell currency at the airport. But, the vast majority of currency exchanges involve the U.S. Dollar. Many pension plans and mutual funds use the currency market to reduce their exposure to foreign exchange effects. For example,   a fund manager might like the prospects for a German pharmaceutical company but use the currency market to hedge against the risk that the euro will fall against the dollar.

Similarly, a U.S. company could have a contract with an English company. To guard against the value of the pound falling, the company could use the forex market to hedge against currency risk.
“The setting of a benchmark rate is not simply another opportunity for banks to earn a profit.” Aitan Goelman, the CFTC’s Director of Enforcement, said in a statement, “Countless individuals and companies around the world rely on these rates to settle financial contract, and the reliance is premised by faith in the fundamental integrity of these benchmarks.  The market only works if people have confidence that the process of setting these benchmarks is fair, not corrupted by manipulation.”\

Is there anything in the world left that is not corrupted?

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Wedding season is here and all the girls are buzzing about their how to get the dress problems.  Now a day’s   relationships,   friendships and relatives live all over the country. It can take a real commitment to even physically get together for the main event. We don’t realize how much togetherness is done on line and not necessarily in person anymore so commerce has to keep up with the demands of busy people who aren’t even in the same location. I am talking about the ladies who need to buy dresses for the wedding.

The hope for every girl who says yes to being a bridesmaid in someone’s wedding says yes to the financial commitment of buying the dress and hoping it will be something she could wear again somewhere without looking like a bridesmaid again. That sounds difficult since it will be a bridesmaid dress. The market for bridesmaid’s dresses is worth $2 billion dollars every year with new stores like J.Crew and Target selling dresses now. What I think is a new innovation to the market is a new online store that specializes in bridesmaid’s dresses  costing  under $200 dollars. The store is called Gather & Gown   where the co-founder Michael Shettel says his 33 styles in more than a dozen colors should provide enough variety.

85% of women never wear the dress again. The online company does have a showroom outside Philly. The online store makes it easy for the long distance friends and relatives to get together with a chat room called the loop.  The average bridesmaid spends $1,700 on the event from the dress to the bachelorette party to the wedding gift.  Another site is called Little Borrowed Dress where you can rent a dress for as little as $50 dollars.  If men can rent tuxedos than why can’t women rent dresses? The shipping is free and they even pick up the dry cleaning bill. The only downside is that you can ‘t alter the dresses.

There is always a solution to every problem so stop all the chatting and just get it done. I know the chatting for girls is half the fun.  It is still good to know that people are still bothering to get married and that girls are still willing to even be called a maid of the bride. Let us hope that the long distances between you now does not prevent you from keeping your hopes high and that the reunion does happen at one of the most significant days of your life, your wedding.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

It is tough to be a musician these days and actually earn money from your recordings. Even old broads like Madonna need to go on tour again just to earn big money. There was a time when music was actually a business and artist’s earned good money from their recordings. Not anymore. Everything is stolen or being broadcast for free especially concerts. Will anyone even bother to record that great new song buzzing in their head?

Over the past 2 decades there have been $7 billion dollars missing from the music industry and that comes from the climate of the industry. The musicians are not succeeding in getting any of that money back. The money has all gone to the producers and Spotify and not to the songwriters. According to Aloe Blacc,  a singer/songwriter who wrote the song called Lift Your Spirit,  the laws do not protect songwriters in order to be able to negotiate. One of his songs was the most streamed songs on Spotify and Pandora had 168 million streams and to the 3 writers to split was a little over $12,000.  Jot enough cash for them.
Let’s look at the song Happy that everyone sings to themselves of all ages and has been seen on TV just about everywhere. It had 43 million plays and the songwriter made only $2,700.  If you are lucky enough to have a song with that much exposure, you should be able to be rich from it. Bill Gates is still making money from something he created decades ago. A few songwriters are fighting for change.  Again, we need Congress to get off their old tanned asses to change the law and leave Hillary’s old phone alone.  For example, a loved song like John Lennon’s Imagine is worth the same amount of money as the stupid phrase, Who Let The Dogs Out. We love them both but they should not be in the same category.

The industry is worth $7 billion dollars. In 1999 the music industry was worth $14 billion. Even if we are down by half the money, it sounds like there should be enough money to pay people. Taylor Swift got off Spotify and refuses to go along with the idea that they make membership money and she doesn’t get any revenue from that. However, she is now filthy rich from all the money she brings in from her concerts that fill up mega stadiums with her fans. AC DC was off I Tunes years ago. They have tribute bands there that sound almost like the original band. So, not much of a boycott there. The copy write laws for songwriters do not restrict who can take your song and record their own version of it. Where is the control of artists over their own artistry?

In 1909 when the player piano was invented and in everyone’s living room with the large scrolls of paper with holes in it that magically made practically every note play by itself, it was the musical players of the day. In order to how a copy of a song, a roll of paper sold for the instrument to play, they had to pay a 9 cent royalty. When artists began recording songs, the same law transferred to them. No law has changed since then. The only control a songwriter has over his work is when it comes to a visual context. They can refuse or accept that their song be used in someone’s movie or TV commercial or video.  Now you are hearing great old songs being used to sell cars or something because it is the only way an artist can still make money on their song.

Madison Avenue in New York City years ago was the place to find advertising. Musicians were employed by companies to compose Jingles. Short songs that sold products like the Chock Full of Nuts Coffee song. Not anymore. The industry for that is gone now too. Give more control to the songwriter Congress! A painter or sculptures have the control to give permission to the situation that their art is to be used. The painter can sue a fake of his work. Taylor or AC DC can’t sue a tribute band stealing their work and making money from their performance.  

There is freedom and then there is free. Two entirely different things. The consumer has no problem with free. The artist loves the freedom of their music getting around from all sources but there should be compensation, royalties paid to the original artist first before others get a cut of the action. Now there isn’t even any money to go around. Free is free. Music is a product like anything else and probably has more longevity than most of the crappy products you buy that breaks down into junk within a year.  I still listen to songs that were produced 40 years ago and they still give me pleasure. The artist needs to get paid money when the old song goes from 8Track, to cassette, to ITunes and now to Apps on your phone. Let’s get Congress off their crusty old asses that stay in their seats till they die and propose laws so that American Music gets distributed properly.

1909 was a long time ago for the last law to be written in this matter. I am sure our current President Obama will dig into his pants   and take out his big black hard Vito pen and use it to pass a law for musicians. 

Friday, March 20, 2015

Why is there always a correlation with religion or special interest groups and the abuse of children? It is all very disgusting and so opposite of what these groups preach. The fanatical religion and all their rules and regulations are bazar in of itself and then they have to compound their beliefs with sex and child abuse? The most famous recently is all the scandals with priests abusing altar boys compounded with the church leaders protecting the pedophiles by simply reassigning them to other parishes.  In the Middle East religions there believe that their followers will be awarded with virgin girls if a follower does what they want. Should innocence be a prize? Now the Jehovah Witnesses are abusing young girls.
There is a landmark child abuse case that was won by a girl who testified that she was abused by a church leader. She was awarded millions of dollars and now 2 dozen more cases of alleged child abused children have come forward. The religion itself sounds strange to me. The child is Candace Conti who broke her silence to take on the all- male leadership of a wealthy secretive religion who she said failed to protect her from a predatory pedophile.  What most of us know about the Jehovah’s Witness is that they publish a short magazine and send their congregation to go door to door preaching and reading parts of their scriptures.

Their headquarters is in New York City and like their publication is called The Watchtower where the church leaders are housed and have fostered a policy of silence on child abusers. Some of the leaders have gone on to repeatedly offend. At nine years old Jonathan Kendrick abused her several times a month. The entire religion seems weird to me. Everyone outside the religion is like the walking dead. All of the Jehovah Witness followers are taught that Armageddon is coming; the end of the world as we know it. The only survivors will be their true believers. Wow, well that is not very nice to most of us.
Growing up as a Jehovah Witness means that you do not celebrate birthdays, Christmas or have any friends outside of the church. That does not seem very nice either. They also believe that anyone who is not a Jehovah’s   Witness is evil and could be used as a tool to pull you away from the religion. Must they be so paranoid? Why don’t we all just love and preserve our earthly wonders of beauty, good food and fresh air and stop all this pain under the guise of religious beliefs that only bring war and all the strife of war?

Candace decided to go forward with the lawsuit after she saw Jonathan Kendrick, her abuser on the Sex Offender Registry for abusing another child in a different congregation. The local church leaders did not believe her claims unless she had 2 witnesses to the crime. Who molests children in front of witnesses? That would be even more disgusting. The police never brought charges against Jonathan because he denied all allegations. The next move is to sue the Watchtower itself.  She hired a lawyer Rick Simons who has spent many years representing victims of pedophile priests in the Catholic Church. It is a shame that there are so many pedophile religious leaders out there that a lawyer can build an entire practice on just that issue for children.

During depositions, other leaders of the religion knew of the abuse and it was revealed that he abused his own step-daughter yet the other leaders did not call the police or warn the congregation.  They stand  by a confidentiality policy set by their own rules. The Watchtower also said they will not get involved if the abuse did not take place on church property. We must protect our children and stop with all the radical religions out there that are masked by some of the most horrible crimes.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

The world is fixated with bigger and better. We as a nation must have the tallest most phallic building on earth. America used to be there. Now other places are signs of wealth because many of our corporations take their wealth to banks in foreign countries to avoid taxes. The problem now is how tall can   we   go and how long can any place on earth hold the world’s tallest building record for any length of time. See, it is all about length. Some women will tell you it doesn’t matter but it matters. Yeah, I’m talking about buildings.

It was only about 5 years ago on January 10, 2010 when we had the world debut of the world’s tallest building called the Burj Khalifa in the Persian Gulf Emeritas of Dubai. The celebration had it looking like a giant fire cracker of fireworks exploding off the sides of the building. It soars in height to 2,716 and a half feet. That is more than half a mile into the sky. The building features corporate offices, apartments and a luxury hotel. Something about tall buildings that make them instant landmarks and movie stars. It already appeared in the Mission Impossible movie called Ghost Protocol with Tom Cruise performing some of his own stunts some 17 hundred feet up.  

Saudi Arabia has launched the construction of the Kingdom Tower. It is designed to rise a full kilometer that is 3,280 feet. More than 500 feet taller than the big one in Dubai. But for how long will it be the tallest? After all it was back in 1956 when I was born that the late American architect Frank Lloyd Wright proposed a mile tall skyscraper, called the Illinois. It was never built.  For now the big one in Dubai is the tallest and the most specular way to bring in the New Year because it can be seen from everywhere there and has permanent fixtures to provide light shows and fireworks from top to bottom.

They are no longer skyscrapers.  They are more like heaven pokers.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Here we go, another approach with dealing with pain. I like it because it sounds simple. We are all used to taking a pill for pain in fact 80% of all pain killers taken in the world are being taken here in the United States. There is a woman who claims she can elevate chronic pain in a much healthier pill- free -way   by simply manipulating a body part with a strange name you probably never heard of. Who knows if this is a cure for you?  All I know is that we need alternatives.

It is estimated that over 100 million people suffer from some kind of chronic pain somewhere on their body. $600 billion dollars are spent health care in lost wages and lost productivity. If you don’t feel well, you just don’t want to do anything. With numbers that high, everyone must be looking for some answers. It is simply called the Melt Method developed by Susan Hitzmann and is described in length in her book published by Harper Collins in a 300 page paperback. It is all about working on a part of the body that no one ever heard of. The connecting tissue called Fascia located just under your skin.

Armed with a little ball and foam filled rollers that can be purchased at Amazon as a kit for joint and muscle free pain relief, she says you are on the way to pain management. She says that by stimulating the connective tissue in the body with pressure points in the Fascia it will stimulate tissue, loosen it up and reducing inflammation thus reducing aches, pains and stiffness. It sounds too simple to be true.  The secret is not just a massage kind of thing. You need to stimulate your body in organized ways from day to day. She gives one on one classes as well as group instruction.

There are customers who have had multiple surgeries for pain that said that after a month of her regime they feel better. I haven`t tried it and make no money as an endorsement this is just information I come by. They say what makes it different is that it is a interface between systems. There are nerve ending s in your Fascia so if it is inflamed, it can feel painful. So, by manipulating the Fascia through massage or stretching like doing yoga, or even acupuncture, they could be reducing their perception of pain. In acupuncture they put a needle into connecting tissue that winds around the needle and after that, every time you move your needle, the Fascia moves with it; according to Dr. Helene Langevin from Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

Research into Fascia is relatively new and it is difficult to scientifically measure pain levels but you and I know when we are experiencing it.  Many people feel that they feel an immediate difference. I will try it because it is a drug free method to reduce pain. I will try it because it is something I can do and not rely on a chiropractor or specialist or masseuse.

Monday, March 16, 2015

It is Saint Patrick’s Day a day when we honor the American Irishman who helped build this country. In the early 20th Century they were building our cities and our bridges and our dams and our interstate roads. Tough men of whom many lost their lives in the process. They say there are many an Irishman dead in the concrete from falling into the cement in the making of a dam. Did they say, “Oh Damn!”  at  least when they lost a good man? Not funny but possibly a true phrase.

 The most not funny now is our tanned Congressmen not voting on anything to preserve and maintaining with repairs to our nation’s infrastructure. All that was built by a good Irishman now a hundred years later needs to at least be inspected. Congress is too busy playing President by wineing  and dining other world leaders that us Americans have protected well throughout the years. It is time to protect the beautiful descendants of a hard working Irishman and all Americans from danger by just traveling on a road or over a bridge or living near a Dam. Damn It!

Must America conduct their own tea party? I say throw all the bums out in Congress and start over. Many of them have guaranteed salaries and jobs for the rest of their lives in those seats. Every time they decide to close down the government, they make sure they vote that their salaries are exempt somehow. We need competent professionals in those seats not just some bum that was voted in one day because of a popularity contest ad a good tan. We should have thematic parades. Let’s call this year’s parades dedicated to our nation’s Infrastructure.  It is a big word that encompasses our roads, bridges, dams, levies, airports and power grids. Basically anything that hasn’t been built for the poor people of Africa or can be destroyed in an   action movie.

The reality is that our infrastructure is not being destroyed by alien war ships but just needs some tender loving care like paint and maintenance or even to be replaced for the next hundred years of good service to our citizens. Real roads have curves and not straight lines of our interstate. They all need repair.  Our dams are the most powerful man made structure we have to hold back large amounts of heavy water. The spirits of the dead Irishmen are in them still holding back the walls. We used to love our dams and boasted how they were the world’s largest structures. Now we marvel at the world’s tallest buildings.

Our dams are America’s mighty pyramids our crypts but they create energy for a population of people. They represent ingenuity, brawn and bravery. The problem is that our monuments to civilization and energy production is in serious disrepair. The average age of   America’s 84 Damns is 52 years old and many have problems from when they were first built. They are sick and old.  Like a good old Irishman, they can still take one more drink. The way we ignore old drunks, we are ignoring our dams. The last time statistics were even taken on them was in 2007. Then and I am sure it is worse now, Texas had just 7 inspectors responsible for 74 hundred dams. Our tanned Congressmen are more concerned about keeping new immigrants out rather than looking at our dams. That is over 1,050 dams per inspector. They don’t have time to get a tan.

The state was only able to look at 239 dams. Alabama doesn’t even have an inspection agency to monitor it’s 2,000 plus dams. Maybe our Republican President Bush and now Congress should be looking to assist our homeland and leave the Middle East alone to work out their own problems for a while after 15 years of our good young handsome Irish boys coming home missing important parts of their bodies from unsolvable wars. Yes. I said No inspectors in Alabama. We are doing a terrible job of not only maintaining our largest man- made structures but bridges, roads and pipelines are in need of renovation. Give a brave returning home soldier a job taking care of America now.

The American Society of Civil Engineers gave America a D+ grade. Our kids go to engineering schools to create video games and not bridges. Other studies have found that our infrastructure is lacking. The World Economic Forum rated America 16th in the World because when infrastructure fails, terrible things happen. It now becomes a lethal surprise and very expensive to repair. Right now everyone’s cars are either rusting from the ice melt on the roads or are in the shop for expensive repairs due to unrepaired pot holes. We are paying our taxes right now while we pay with our lives and our repairs due to the tanned guys doing nothing for our roads.

The Secretary of Transportation pays more attention to his fancy suits than our roads. There are 70,000 bridges that have been deemed “structurally deficient.”  Stop with the big words and get permanent crews on every bridge in America working 24/7 for a good wage. Let Americans see their good tax dollars at work for them for a change. Do we even have to live on the luck of the Irish every time we pay our bridge toll and hope to get across safely? Pittsburgh is known as the city of bridges. The minimum repair to one bridge was to build a concrete path under the crumbling bridge to catch debris falling off to protect the highway under the bridge. Stupidity.
All the politicians agree on both sides that infrastructure is important but no one does anything. Both business and labor in the form of the US Chamber of Commerce and the AFL-CIO are in favor of infrastructure spending. Repairs are boring and spending money on boring stuff like that doesn’t look good for re-election. A fancy ribbon cutting ceremony looks cool to politics but building new stuff is expensive. No tanned suit wants to be the guy known for spending money on Capitol Hill. We have the United States Highway Trust Fund that will go bankrupt on May 31 unless Congress acts on it. The reason it is bankrupts is because it is federally funded by the gas tax. The tax has not increased with inflation since 1993. It gets 18 cents per gallon.   No one wants to be known for raising taxes. The gas tax has gone down 39 cents since 1993 compared to other things that have gone up.

We have not had long term infrastructure legislation in Congress for over a decade. Those bums wasted time according to CONGRESS.GOV since 2003 barely passed 2 partial authorizations and 23 short term extensions of which in July of 2005 was for just 2 days. Let’s get some naked skirted Irishmen to throw the misleading lazy bums out of Congress. I am half Irish and even with a belly full of some good Irish Whisky I can think of bring back Municipal Tax Free Bonds that people could buy as investments or even better, tax those bastard top 1 per centers every time they take American hard earned corporate dollars to Swiss Accounts in Dubai or the Cayman Islands to hide their billions that belong here rebuilding our country.

Obama is not in favor of raising the gas tax. He is in favor of closing the loophole that allows corporations to benefit from stashing their profits overseas. We all know that would guarantee to solve the problem. Our tanned Congressional leader swatted Obama’s plan away in favor of his own plan that still has not been presented to us. Swat all the corporate funded re-election so called leaders out of our Congressional chairs. We could get a few good Irishmen together I am sure to get the job done. Sigh! If only life was like a good old Irish movie. Enjoy your heritage and be Irish for a day.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

It must be true. She must be right. She saw all the necessary things for it to happen and thankfully she got out of there before it happened to her. Sadly, I am talking about my daughter who attends a  well  known college in the northeast working on a 5 year combined BA and Master’s Program with two majors already earning a full scholarship and making the Dean’s list every year of the 3 years she has been in college. Yet I feel sad for her.

She has repeatedly expressed how the male population of students are creepy. I know both males and females must work very hard to maintain grades and actually learn the subjects that they hope to be professionals at when they are done learning at colleges. Both genders are stressed, over worked and need sex hopefully in a good relationship with someone you love but good relationships take too much time that they do not have. They are spending all their time striving and succeeding because for most, tuition is way too high.

I saw it myself when I was visiting her one weekend. On a Saturday or Sunday night the girls are walking with shorts on and the highest heels their feet could handle. The boys are already laughing way to loudly and most probably already drunk. They all meet at various clubs, frat houses or parties and then I am not sure what happens. She tells me the guys are in groups of about 5 and they take turns dancing with one girl. Now dancing now is a guy bending a girl over and rubbing his penis into her ass. Before you know it, it is happening to all the girls. These are strangers to her and   if she is also drunk enough and unable to wiggle her way away from them, is being ganged raped somewhere. The colleges rarely follows up on reports of rape. Breakfast is served till 4 in the afternoon because most sleep their addictions off till then on Sunday.

My daughter is terrified of any parties or even private events at college. She just turned 21 and has never had a relationship with a college boy. She works as a supervisor in the cafeteria overseeing breaks for the workers and finds the uneducated hard workers there more interesting and nicer to her than any pompous college boy. She attends school within walking distance of Harvard and MIT. An area of America where some   of America’s finest engineers and business movers and shakers have attended school. I didn’t believe her until I saw the movie and looked at the litigation.

Yes, rape is rampart on college campuses. Some girls are coming out of the shadows having the courage to share what happened to them telling us that schools are failing to protect their students. A new film is taking certain institutions to task. One of the most sensational accusations was to the 2013 Heisman Trophy winner Jamis Winston from Florida State University. He is poised to be a first round pick in the 2015 NFL draft but there is a former student from FSU who is speaking out about her college story of rape in the film called The Hunting Ground. Erica Kinsman reports on what she claims he did to her. According to the movie only 26% of rape reports lead to arrests. Here she is reporting that she was raped by a guy the school is unbelievably proud of on the football field. A place where sports are so big that some coaches get paid more money than the college president. Sports is big money for some colleges.

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The film uses first  hand accounts from more than a dozen college students. The film makers are seeking to expose what they say is a shocking epidemic of violence and institutional cover-ups. Universities are protecting their brand.  Erica said that right after she was raped she reported it to the Tallahassee Police Department and an investigation was opened however Jamis was never charged. Willie Meggs a Florida State Attorney said,” There was not sufficient evidence to charge Jamis with a crime.” Erica found her being the target for slandering the campus hero. She dropped out of college to get away from the gravity   against her. Now, 2 years later she is telling her story again in the movie.
No college campus is safe. Women are faced with more questions rather than support. The girls are young and scared and do not want anyone to know how they were sexually violated. They do not want their parents to know. Only 20% of college rapes are reported to the police. The Universities discourage the girls from going to the police. It is the only crime where we blame the victim. Two girls filed a Title 9 Complaint with the Department of Education. Their central argument is the university’s handling of sexual assault allegations violated their civil right to education.

It is starting a national movement. Currently there are 94 universities under Title 9 Investigation for mishandling sexual assault claims. Some girls are going from sexual assault victims to survivalists to now activists. A case shouldn’t be thrown out if a girl doesn’t exactly remember what time the assault happened. Usually they are so drunk, they don’t even realize what is happening till it is too late. The guys are getting away with it and are doing it repeatedly. Ethics used to be assumed. These boys need to learn respect and civility and have lost it all or was never taught and they need to be brought up on charges and taught the most important lesson. Humility.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Insanity is alive   and well and thriving in certain circles and their ring leader needs to be taken away in a straitjacket and his wacky ideas be put to rest. Risk taking and adventure seekers have always been around but this wacky idea takes it all to the next level of crazy. People are lining up to audition for a trip to Mars even though they have been told that it will be a one way trip. They will never be able to go back to earth because the technology to have return space ships from Mars has not been developed yet. They don’t even know how to bring people back.

We all say at times ironically to the people we love the most in our lives that we are so disgusted with some scenario that we want to take a one way ticket somewhere. We need a break. We need to get away. But the creators of this idea seems to want to create some new form of mass genocide. The problem is that this idea is being funded and supported. In the remote rocky plains of Utah, there is a place called the Mars Society Desert Research Center where people are   training for “Extra Vacuolar Activities.”  They ride on 4 wheelers through the desert to simulate the land on Mars. They wear astronaut like gear complete with air tubes and bubble helmets.

The company promoting such nonsense is called Mars One   that is interviewing 200,000 people from all over the globe who have decided to leave life on earth behind.  The goal is to get 100 potential astronauts. The first launch date is set for 2024. It is all the idea of a new Hitler. Bas Lansdorp who is 38 years old and the CEO of the company that is based in the Netherlands. His goal is to have the first colony of humans to land and live on Mars. He claims that he can do what NASA so far has not been able to do.  He is an entrepreneur by trade but this time he is dangerously playing with human lives. It is a billion dollar mission funded by TV rights to a reality show.
What a selfish crazy thing to play with people’s emotions and lives just to produce the most outrageous reality show for entertainment. At least Hitler was trying to create in his madness a “superior race” whatever that was supposed to turn out to be but this guy wants people willingly to walk into his ovens of the land of Mars that is not designed to withstand life for any length of time and no technology to allow people to return to our paradise specifically designed for human existence.

 When will people finally decide we need to preserve and propagate near extinct butterflies and beauty that exists on earth instead of wars, pollution filled energy sources and other stupidness here on our beautiful earth?  Perhaps the other planets are out there so barren and in extreme temperatures to remind us of our beauty here on earth. Someone put this guy away like Hitler should have been hauled away too in his early stages of development. He happily looks forward to the day when the world will be watching like the world watched Neil Armstrong walk on the moon. Someone tell this freak that we also successfully brought the astronauts   back home.
He insists that the technology is existing and no new inventions are needed to implement the program.  Because they do not have the technology for a return, a permanent colony will be formed. All the food would be freeze dried.    Professor Michio Kaku, PhD from the Astrophysicist City College of New York says this has the atmosphere of a circus where you have amateurs simply raising their hand volunteering to be the first people on Mars. Given the fact that this will be untested technology it is tragedy waiting to happen. A recent MIT study also noted that Mars One Astronauts might suffocate within months of touching down on the red planet.

The 100 chosen must be able to travel in quite a small space ship for 7 months with three people and to be able psychologically never see in person their friends and relatives from earth again. Freedom on earth should not ever include the suggestion of possible danger to any group of people.

Friday, March 13, 2015

After 4 crash landings I think it is about time someone tells Harrison Ford to calm down and do more walking.  I am not even talking about all his near crash landings in his movies either. What makes movie stars think they are invincible? I think every actor who played Superman died from adventurous death. One of them actually jumped out a window. Did he think he could fly too?

He played characters like Indiana Jones and Hans Solo. He even flew a plane and made Anne Heche stranded on an island in the movie called Six Days and Seven Nights. Well we should thank him for getting rid of her for a week but all the rest of his crashes are just down  right dangerous for all the rich doctors trying to have a peaceful golf game. They don’t want to have to save his old life again. They just want to play golf without him destroying their course.
Yes, our action hero survived a real stunt again. He crashed his plane in the middle of a golf course in Los Angeles. He is in fair condition and the doctors who ran to the wreckage were surprised he survived the crash. Harrison was pulled out of a vintage World War II plane. In Indiana Jones he admitted that he didn’t know how to fly. This plane was so old it had stars painted on its wings and you had to wear a crash helmet because it had just a windshield. His trip began at Santa  Monica  Airport and within less than 2 miles from the airport his engine is down and needs to land.  He does not make it back to the runway.

He is down at the tee of the 8th hole in Penmar Golf Course. He is 72 years old and at that age he is losing engine power too. This isn’t the first time he has crash landed. A helicopter he was in went down in 1999. The very next year he crash landed a plane in Nebraska. Somehow he has survived every crash since he has been flying for the past 20 years. The title of his documentary called Just  Another Pilot says a lot of about how he sees himself. He simply loves to fly. It is a passion he shared with Barbara Walters in a 2008 interview. He said, ”I love the freedom of flight and the places you go.” Well, this time he went 2 miles and crashed the nose of the plane on the golf course. It is time for a man in his seventies to walk the golf course.  

The plane was a 1942 Ryan PT22 an antique like him that belongs in a museum. It was manufactured the same year he was born. Col. Stephen Garnyard USMC (Ret.) a former fighter pilot and deputy Assistant Secy. Of State said “To fly these really old planes is fairly dangerous and to take on a level of risk.” Harrison! Go risk your life in the movies not over our heads please. He is expected to make a full recovery. God help us.