Thursday, September 29, 2005

Forgot to mention it the other day, but I have been interviewed by a writer for an upcoming article in LIBRARY JOURNAL. It deals with how reference work is changing for neighborhood libraries as we shift from print to electronic resources. I'm hoping that I don't come across as overly negative and I did have to change some of what I wrote in an e-mail follow up, since I may have gone out on a limb criticizing the administration here in Queens. I do need the paycheck!
Grabbed my copy of METRO this morning (one of the two morning free papers available here in NYC, the other being AM) and was pleasantly surprised. Under the headline "Hey, Mr. Fantasy" there was a picture of Neil Gaiman on the top of the front page. Inside was a short interview/article on Gaiman's latest project the fantasy film "MirrorMask". Done with his sometime artist/collaborator Dave McKean, this is a CGI filled movie from the Jim Henson Studio. Also was mentioned Gaiman's scripting chores for the recently announced adaptation of BEOWULF with Angelina Jolie, Anthony Hopkins & John Malkovich. An interesting cast but since I love the original tale I have to wonder what Gaiman and director Robert Zemeckis have in mind.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

My mother always told me that it was wrong to take delight in the misfortunes of others. However....

I can't help but be at least amused by the news that Rep. Tom Delay has already decided to step down as Majority Leader. You can never safely assume that guys like him won't find a way to get away with everything, but it is nice to see that he is not totally above the law.

The less said about the testimony of former FEMA head Brown yesterday the better. It just wasn't his fault, okay! Get off his back so he can investigate just who is to blame for embarrassing G.W.

Monday, September 26, 2005

Belated condolences to the family and friends of Don Adams, who passed away yesterday. I didn't hear about this until lunch time, while listening to the news on WCBS. Adams found his niche as Agent Maxwell Smart and will be remembered for that character for years to come. He also voiced Tennessee Tuxedo (a cartoon you can still see on occasion) as well as Inspector Gadget (which probably brought him almost as much money and fame as Max ever did).

Our heartfelt wishes go to all those who 'knew' Adams as whatever character, and to those lucky enough to know him in person.

Saturday, September 24, 2005

So far we c an be thankful that Hurricane Rita is weaker than feared. Still there are going to be a lot of folks left homeless, but some lessons (at least superfically) appear to have been learned from Hurricane Katrina. Sadly, New Orleans appears to be taking another hit, although not as bad and mostly from renewed flooding.

Amusing to see that the Bush folks decided that they would 'be in the way' since that is what they are good at, and little else. Maybe they should all just pack up and stay in Colorado Springs.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

From AP: Senate Judiciary Committee votes 13-to-5 to send nomination of John Roberts for chief justice to full Senate.

Well, I'm not shocked but I am appalled by the spineless seat-fillers called Democrats. At least a few have the balls to stand for some type of convictions. Might be time to look into getting 'real' progressives and not Republican wannabes in those Senate & Congressional seats.

It's never too early to consider remaking the Democratic Party into what it once was. Then again it might be time to let the party die a natural death and create something new from the ashes.
Sadly it took the fiasco that was the Hurricane Kitrina recovery to get FEMA, Homeland Security and other federal agenices to work together. We can only hope that they truly have learned something and those affected by Hurricane Rita will not be caught up in the same kind of in-fighting and 'politics as usual.'

Naturally, I'm seeing that the residents of Galvaston appear white and better off then the folks in New Orleans, and of course Texas (as was Florida, in 2004) has connections to the Bush administration which will help matters. I know I sound like a Left-wing conspiracy nut here, but I can't help it, since I HAVE been one one for 30+ years.

Also, it was good to see that a possible disaster was averted by a good pilot and careful planning last night. The safe landing of the Jet Blue flight at LAX was one of those events that television does seem to bring us all too seldom, as these things to often end in tragedy. Congrats to the pilot and his crew for bringing the passengers and themselves down safely.

Fingers crossed that landfall this coming Saturday (or late Friday evening) does not bring about the deaths of anyone which could have been prevented. There are still those folks who refuse to leave (one guy last night saying his neighbors were caught up in "Katrina Fever", as an explanation of his own decision to stay), but we wish them a safe outcome nonetheless.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

It's a shame to hear that Cindy Sheehan was unwelcome in Union Square. Seems members of the New York Police Department moved into the crowd of about 150 people, who were there to hear her speak and yanked away the microphone. Mrs. Sheehan was 'jostled' a bit, but not arrested. No doubt Mayor Mike will find a reason to defend the cops for doing this in his usual whiney fashion.

Friday, September 16, 2005

According to Reuters: "President George W. Bush's advisers said on Friday billions of dollars needed to rebuild New Orleans and the Gulf Coast will be borrowed and will raise the deficit but Bush still wants to extend tax cuts."

Thank the gods! We just got a 1% raise here at the library and I was worried about how the hurricane recovery would effect me. Looks like my capital gains and stock dividends are still safe.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

It is an embarrassment to watch any of the Congressional hearing on John Roberts. Could the Democrats be more spineless or the Republicans less toady and suck up? What a worthless group of seat-fillers the American people have elected. Would the Founding Fathers even recognize this as what they had in mind, or would it remind them of the rubber stamp parliament which followed the lead of King George? I think I can hazard a guess.

I'm kind of glad to be working this evening, since I'll likely still be on the subway when His Smugness addresses the nation.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Look, the President said that mistakes were made on 'all levels'. He's taken responsibility, so all you progressives and liberals get off his back!!

Poor George! He finally has to admit to actually making a mistake after his mother showed just how out of touch the whole damn family is from the majority of Americans. I guess this is a step up, since during the campaign last year he couldn't name a single mistake he had ever made.

I mean it's working out okay for those poor folks who left New Orleans for Houston, right? That is what Barbara seems to feel anyway.

Let's all forgive and forget, okay? The President is trying and all this finger pointing sure as hell isn't helping. He's got a Supreme Court to stack with neo-Cons and you're all ruining a darned good time.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Figured it was about time to weed out some of the links I've had over on The Left. Not that these are still valid, nor does my removing them an indication that I no longer agree with the sites. I simply found that I had way too many and in some cases haven't gone to check these sites since originally posting them. If I'm not that interested, why should any of you take the time?

On the political front, I'm going to vote this afternoon in the Democratic primary in New York City. I live in Brooklyn and there are a few folks who'll be getting my vote. I am most certainly NOT voting for the endorsed candidate of my (for lack of the better term) Union. Apparently somebody is looking for a position in the next Bloomberg administration so Those In Power have thrown DC 37 behind Mayor Mike.

Not that I've NEVER voted for a Republican but I'm certainly not going to vote for someone for whom I have not a bit of respect. I keep hearing how popular he is and frankly, among the folks I speak to, none of them seems happy with him. I'm not talking about fellow Liberal/Progressives here, but some conservative and independent voters as well. I some how get the feeling that many folks seem to feel that they owe Bloomberg their vote by the reason that he happened to be the mayor as we moved past 9/11. While we're on the subject, we should also remember that in all probability he would not have won that initial election if he did not stand in the shadow of Rudi at the time. Bloomberg likes to remind us about 9/11, although he isn't disgusting enough to show photos of the site as the Presidential candidate he endorsed last year felt obliged to.

Just my two cents, of course!

Friday, September 09, 2005

According to an article from Reuters this morning the President has signed an 'executive order' which would allow federal contractors to pay below standard wages to workers involved in the Katrina cleanup and recovery. Looks like some bad poll numbers and embarrasing revelations about the padded resume of the head of FEMA have NOT changed Standard Operating Procedure at the White House.

Sad that it has taken the deaths of hundreds (if not thousands) of Americans and the almost total destruction of several cities and towns to give the Democratic politicians some backbone.

On a personal note, someone very close to me may have to undergo an operation. I just want to take this moment to remind woman and men not to forego regular doctor's appointments and examinations. Also, don't forget that breast self-exams are an important step in discovering possible problems before they become more serious.

Originally, I was going to go on a rant about religion and the use of the term 'miracle' by lots of folks. Those of you who are familiar with my "beliefs" know that I have problems with all that. However, given the current situation and how faith does seem to help so many folks, I'm going to keep my big mouth shut for the time being.

Unless something major comes up later today, I just want to wish you all a safe weekend!

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

A co-worker's son is a member of the New York City Fire Department, and is one of those who went down to New Orleans about a week ago.

He has reported back that they have releaved some of the city's own so they can take a break. They have been working 17+ hour days and haven't had hot food for the past few. They were hoping to actually get some cooked food last night as a change from sandwiches. He has also said that television can not give you a true feeling for what it is like for the people remaining there. The number of fires and the smell is unbelievable.

We can only send our best wishes and hope that he and the men & women like him remain safe as they perform their jobs. They expect no reward and it is likely they will get little fan fare when they return. These are the same folks who put their lives on the line on 9/11, but they keep doing their jobs.

George Bush and his ilk don't deserve to be in the same room, let alone some photo op, with these folks and never will.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

At some point, probably in 2007 and well after the next round of Congressional elections, we will get some kind of report telling us that nobody is to blame for what happened following Hurricane Katrina. The state and local politicians will try to cover their own butts, but anyone in the current administration can count on their sympathizers to cover any tracks and forestall any investigation which would prove embarrassing. I'm also willing to bet that a few folks at FEMA and/or Homeland Security will be up for some medals for their brilliant planning.

You really didn't know if you wanted to laugh or cry this past weekend as all the news channels covered what is about the biggest demonstration of FUBAR that I have ever seen. It goes way beyond SNAFU, if you now what I mean and I'm sure you do. It would be nice to think that heads will role, but we know from past experience that is not going to happen.

Friday, September 02, 2005

This from AP: "The results are not acceptable," President Bush says of Hurricane Katrina disaster relief efforts.

Well, damn it! As a wealthy Republican and the son of a former President, surely Mr. Bush can call upon the current President and demand.... Oh..that's right. Never mind!
It's in times like this when I always hear from my old friend S. H. Otis. The scenes from New Orleans and reports from around that entire area have him spewing his usual right-wing nonsense. I'm not sure if turning New Orleans into the real life image of John Carpenter's ESCAPE FROM NEW YORK is the correct thing to do, but it just might be what is happening whether we like it or not.

The U.S., considering the delayed response of just about every Federal and state agency, is not helping the situation and it's certainly angering a lot of decent folks around the country. Seems only the talking heads on the G.O.P./Fox News service are keeping their mouths shut about His Smugness. People like Paula Zahn, Anderson Cooper and a couple of other hosts on CNN are actually coming out and saying what it obvious. Where is everybody? Anderson and one of his reporters were correct in saying in effect, "We were able to get here. Why can't the government and rescue workers?"

Unless the White House does a really good job of sheltering G. W. I think he's going to hear a lot of things he isn't going to like. Not that he cares, of course, but it won't look good on television to see the Secret Service taking down old men and women as they bad mouth the Prez.