Friday, August 28, 2009


Hi Good People:

Is it just me, or has the 2012 race for the Presidency already begun?
we, the public, have been subjected to a barrage of Political Speech for lo these many months, and I can't see any surcease on the horizon. During the most recent Presidential Election I grew so weary of a steady news diet of Politics I remarked to someone that I didn't care if they elected Alfred E. Newman, just get the mess over with. I realize that a well informed public is a bulwark of any Democracy, but enough is enough. See an earlier post of mine with suggestions on how to clean up at least a part of this mess. I'm sure that there are probably other, and better, solutions, and perhaps we, as a Society, should all put on our thinking caps and try to come up with something.

Now I'll grant you the current subject of media thought is, of course, the ongoing debate about the Health Care Bill, or Bills, about which we have been besieged for hour upon hour of debate and "Preaching" on this subject which is, without doubt, very important, in one way or another to almost all of us.

I fear, however that in the midst of all the speechifying, there has emerged little in the way of concrete and usable facts. There have been rumors and rumors of rumors, adamant statements (e.g. "There will be" and "There won't be" this, that and thus in the finalized program, but to my knowledge a total lack of actual quotations, chapter and verse of the proposed Act.

This Dear Friends, is rampant dishonesty (surely not--from Politicians-Nah-you think?) as no one I have thus far heard speak, or whose comments I have read in the Print Media, has taken the time, or exhibited the good sense, to enumerate, point by point, what the Finished, Signed, Sealed, Delivered, Plated and Polished Bill will contain. This, I feel, is because not one person, from the top to the bottom of the political spectrum, actually knows, beyond speculation and permutation, what the Bill will contain .

It would be refreshing if just one person, be he or she Politician or Wordsmith, were just to come out and state honestly "I just don't know", when queried or opining on the bill to be, and its contents.

I do know, however, that it has been a long time since I have witnessed a more vituperative climate of debate on any issue, and I fear that no reasonable discourse will ever emerge until and if the ranting, raving and screaming die down. I think that it is a reasonable assumption that this fiery debate and resultant expressions of animosity have, as their origin, nothing more than Politics.

The Republicans are angry because they were so roundly defeated in the last election, and the Democrats are smugly self-satisfied that they, at last, have the upper hand.. This climate reminds me of when the Republicans gained a majority with their 'Contract with America". I think the same subset of feeling was extant on that occasion, to a greater or lesser degree.

I think sometimes We as a People are somewhat justified in feeling a little like Diogenes of Sinope, whom, legend has it, wandered the streets with a lighted lantern, in full daylight, no less, looking for an "Honest Man". His search, perhaps was made fruitless by his supposedly living on the street in an upended pottery tub, and subsisting on a diet consisting of just Onions. One might fairly suppose that most people gave the fragrant cynic a wide berth to escape the effluvium, thus making it difficult for Diogenes to get close enough to anyone to make any determination as to their honesty. I confess I don't know. I do feel, however, had Diogenes happened upon a Politician, who would have undoubtedly been accustomed to rank odors, and who when asked why he was employed thusly, replied "I'M in it for the Money', Diogenes could have blown out his lantern and ended his search. Also he (Diogenes) would also have gone down in History as the discoverer of the first (and perhaps last) honest Politician.

Nor do I know much about the continuing Political firestorm, other than the fact that I am heartily sick of it, and am quite as certain as I can be, that the Legions of people of have gotten up and made themselves look like damn fools in "Town Hall Meetings", have been prompted to do so by one or more of the thousands of Insurance Companies and their "Capos" in the U.S.

How sayest thou?



Thursday, August 20, 2009

Just for fun.

Heres a fun Quiz!

Who was probably the first American Born"Blogger"

Now, there's probably no one who really knows who that person may be, but I have what I believe could be the correct answer, if there is one.


Benjamin Franklin.

When Franklin was twelve years old, he was apprenticed to his brother, a printer, and as he (Ben) had only one year of Formal Schooling, he and his father both thought that this was a good way to further his Education, and as it turned out, both were right.

Using some inborn urge to better himself, Franklin applied himself to the trade, and in the process became quite knowledgeable both as a printer and as somewhat of a Wordsmith.

He apparently felt, as a lot of us do, that he had something to say about events in general, but, lacking a medium for such self expression, he began writing a series of Articles about various subjects, Signing them as a fictional widow, one "Silence Dogood" and surreptitiously slipping beneath the door of the Print Shop where he worked, late at night.

The articles, sixteen in all, proved to be a hit, and one would suppose that Ben was both gratified and emboldened and embarked upon a life, of both curiosity and writing, for which endeavor he is perhaps best known, leading eventually to Poor Richards Almanac, a publication for which he is perhaps best well known, even though he published it under a pen name.

Along the way of course, he dabbled incessantly with many other ideas, not the least of which his discovery that it was not a good idea to fly a kite, with a door key tied in the control string, during a Lightening storm!

I would also wager, that if one hundred students, both Senior High School and College age, if asked who the people were whose image adorns a bill of U.S. Currency, who was not a President of the U.S., fifty percent or less would identify Franklin or Alexander Hamilton, the latter, whom you will recall ,was probably the most Famous American ever killed in a "legal" duel.

But I (as I am wont to do) digress. This is supposed to be about Ben Franklin.

Other fun facts;

Franklin is remembered by many as the Inventor of Bifocal eyeglasses, but did you know, that he also invented the Swim Fin, more modern designs of which are still steadily in use by divers around the world.?

As an aside, some people will argue that Thomas Paine Could be the first Blogger......but..he was not American Born, and his writings were published under his own name, including the famous "Common Sense", and were published as a source of Revenue, not just for fun. But I still am indebted to Mr. Paine for the Title of my poor efforts as a Blogger"

As I say, this was just for fun, if I get any feedback, perhaps I'll throw something else at you.


Thursday, August 13, 2009

College "Sports"

Hello good people:

Today I will probably anger a number of fans of the "Game" of Basketball, particularly that singular creature the Kentucky Fan. I really don't give a rodent's patootie, for the truth may be painful, but it is nevertheless the truth.

I am speaking about the current embroglio about the University of Louisville's Multi-Millionaire Coach, Rick Pitino.

It seems Mr. Pitino was dining with a young lady of his acquaintance and when finished with their dinner, they decided to engage in sexual congress, at or on the table.

Now in their defense, it appears that the couple did have the good manners to wait until the restaurant was closed for the evening, before enjoying their "dessert", however one wonders, that since the Coach is accustomed to appearing before large crowds in his professional role, if he minded the Owner and staff acting as both audience and cheerleaders? I wish I knew the name of that restaurant, as I would make certain to never dine there, but one thing for sure, it gives the term, "Smoking Section" new meaning.

Now it appears, somewhat belatedly, the woman involved has been arrested and charged with trying to extort money from the Coach . If it were anywhere other than Kentucky, one has to wonder if the woman's charge that the act was non consensual, would have had a chance of being believed. But in the Blue Grass State, even if the cameras had been rolling, complete with instant replays of highlights, and the press had been covering the event on the radio and for later replay on T.V., it's a non starter.

for as everyone knows, Basketball is king in Kentucky, and decent behavior and education is, sadly, waaay down the line in order of priorities.

Of course, we are led to believe that the main raison d`etre for College Sports is to assure students with a well rounded Educational experience.

Who are we kidding, other than ourselves ?

To illustrate the point, let me quote the words, already in print, of one incoming basketball recruit to the above named University; to Wit "Yo I ain't leaving, Rick(s) personal life is his life. He (is) here to coach me and is the best teach of hoop to me! so like the fans say, Go Cards".

One presumes that this will soon blow over and this young recruit will wind up with a Multi-Million Dollar NBA contract, and Coach Pitino (the piston ?) will continue to draw a salary commensurate with his production. Of what?

Sorry Fans
Facts be facts, as the young recruit would undoubtedly say!

Cheers, and be sure and check your tablecloths the next time you dine out.


Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Health care Controversy

Hello Good People:

Over the past few months, I, like many other people have been besieged by the Media about the Health Care Debate currently on boil in Congress.

Like almost everyone else, I really don't understand several things about the proposed plan(s).

We the people, have not, been given much in the way of concrete information. There have been rumors, innuendo, hints, but I for one simply do not understand what the various incarnations of the plan entail, and let me hasten to add that going to one of the various "Town Hall" meetings and acting like a damn fool, shouting, screaming, signage, and so on, is NOT getting information. If we as a society, cannot act civilized then, I fear that as a whole, we will not accomplish much.

So, if Congress was to suddenly develop Common Sense, it seems to me that there are a couple of things that Congress could do alleviate some of the fears about this problem, I know, I know, the idea of Congress suddenly developing common sense is about as far fetched as a field mouse giving birth to a Giraffe. But setting aside the humor for the moment, consider the following proposals.

Release a synopsis of the main points of the proposed plan, including projected individual out of pocket costs to utilize this Great Idea. The "Sticker" here, is, I think, that no one, including the Prez knows what exactly is or will be in the final Bill when it is voted on.

Include, as the First item of the plan, a stipulation that Congress, as well as all other members and employees of the Bloated Bureaucracy that is the Federal government,will automatically lose their current Rolls-Royce Insurance Plans, and have to use the same plan, as will we lowly citizens.

Seems like pretty simple logic to me.

How do you feel?

The Old Professor

Friday, August 7, 2009

Insurance Adjusters

Today's post is, admittedly, a self centered comment.

I, as many others of good moral character, was raised to believe that one should never drive an automobile without proper Insurance Coverage. I have faithfully obeyed that rule for over half a Century.

I have also been assiduous in maintaining a portfolio of other Insurance, Life, Health, Homeowners, Etc. At times, however, I have been given reason to doubt the sagacity of my practices.

This doubt has arisen by virtue in my dealing with an Insurance Adjuster, following an incident involving a fall at a local auto repair shop, due to a slippery liquid being poured or spilled onto an exit ramp.

I sustained among other things; 5 broken ribs, fractured lower spine, a smashed shoulder, necessitating a surgical rebuild, which was only partly successful, due to the nature and extent of the damage, an enduring concussion, bruised lungs and kidneys and so on.

Naif that I am, after the initial Hospital Visits & etc, I contacted the Insurance Carrier for the afore-mentioned repair shop, and made arrangements for them to pay my medical bills, and thought all was well..

The first inkling I had that I was in for a battle was when one of the Adjusters for this Company,( for the sake of a proper identity we'll call this Company......oh I don't know......How about the SCROOM INSURANCE AND VINYL SIDING COMPANY.(. Purely for the sake of an identity you understand.) telling me, "well, Mr. Doe, at your age, you're not worth much!!! I Will gladly take an oath on a Hundred Dollar Bible as to the truth of that statement, as will my wife.

Things have gone downhill ever since that moment. I have been told that Hospital and Doctor bills have all been paid, only to discover, that this was not true, I have been offered the equivalent of 25,000 Congolese shillings ( one dollar and seventy four cents, U.S. ) Because as yet another adjuster told me "Well Mr. Doe, we just can't see where you were very badly injured", in a voice roughly equivalent to scraping a number of four-penny nails across an old blackboard ( I would imagine this particular Adjuster won a competition to determine which employee had the most irritating voice, in order to discourage normal, sentient humans from ever calling again)

At times I have had to beg the indulgence of an Adjuster,for a temporary delay in our conversations in order to seek treatment for a Stroke or to inquire of prices from a local Mortician.

But still, great fool that I am, I persevere . It's the principal of the thing now. I only have about two months until the Statute of Limitations will expire on this accident, which means I will have to reluctantly hire a Lawyer to file a Lawsuit to "Lock In" this case and obviate the above mentioned Statute.

It is a sad state of affairs when a person is injured, through no fault of their own, and in most cases, be obliged to engage an Expensive Lawyer (Is there any other kind?) simply in order to have their Medical bills paid and perhaps receive a small amount for their pain and suffering, but since laws setting a Statute of Limitations on injuries are passed by Lawyers (who else?) and since all Lawyers who couldn't make a living as an Attorney run for Public Office, and are too frequently elected, we as a people are well and truly shafted.

In short, a couple of things to remember when dealing with any Insurance Company, I think, are as follows.

1. Do NOT believe anything they tell you.

2. See rule number 1.

Have a good and safe day, please!


Thursday, August 6, 2009


I will ask your indulgence for a brief bit of verse.

Those seried rows of solemn white sentinels

Stand in a final formation

Giving mute testimony

to the debt we owe

To the uncountable, the unknown

Men and Women

Some high ranked

some poor privates

some exalted, some quiet

All Soldiers

some brave, all frightened, save the few

at that which fell upon them, and with them

most always untimely

who unselfishly laid the building blocks

of our Great Republic

they give quiet testimony

we have been long here

and longer still, we remain

as silent guides

to the continued Freedom

of you.