Plastic Is Forever

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on March 22, 2010

It was an ISM…internet synchronicity manifestation. There was a much praised video about a plastic bag, that winds up in the Pacific Trash Vortex. The bag has a voice ( supplied by uberkraut Werner Herzog), and goes looking for it’s “maker” (silently played by an unknown actress).

The bag has a remarkable existence. First, it is used to carry tennis balls, then dog food, then to pick up the by product of dog food. This is remarkable in itself… the typical krogerbag, if it doesn’t get thrown away on arrival at home, will not be used for more than one chore. But this is a special bag.

After the secondary canine duty, the bag is thrashed. Somehow, it escapes from the municipal destination, and begins a wind propelled odyssey in search of “my maker”. After a while, it is on the beach, and the wind takes it into the ocean. It floats in the sea, has pieces bitten off my non nutrition conscious fish, and heads off for a legendary garbage nirvana.

Before long, the bag is in the “Great Pacific Garbage Patch”. The GPGP is a bit north of Hawaii, and west of California. The bag movie was filmed in Wilmington, N.C. You should not think about this too long. At any rate, the bag is not happy in the GPGP, and moves on to greener pastures.

The next day, PG goes to a site called “Listserve”. The letterman of the day is “top ten places you don’t want to visit”. Number ten on the list is the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. GPGP is either the size of Texas or twice the size of the lower 48. It is a collection of debris, largely plastic, from the world. It is held in place by something called a gyre, which is a place where swirling ocean currents bump up against each other. Greenpeace has a neat little visual that illustrates this.

A visit to google led to a trip to Wikipedia. There is an article at Wikipedia about GPGP that is an almost verbatim source for listverse. This takes recycling a bit too far. There is also a band called Pacific Trash Vortex.

Plastic is a petroleum by product, and has many benefits to our world. It’s durability is one of them, and also one of it’s negatives. (The fact that plastic is so cheap to make is another.) A plastic bag cast off into the environment simply does not disappear. Fish eat them, thinking it is good food, and die of starvation. (Does this affect the food chain?) While the film about the plastic bag is an exaggeration, the fact is that plastic is forever.

The vintage photographs are from the ” Special Collections and Archives,Georgia State University Library”. The poster is from

Military Money

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on March 21, 2010

There is a bumper sticker which says you cannot have peace and plan for war, or something like that. There is a bit of truth to that. ( This same concept applies to abortion and capital punishment. When you provide a facility for something, you make its usage more likely).If you are going to fight a war, you need the biggest, best equipped army. When you train this army, and build those weapons, you are going to start for a reason to use it. And so the merry go round goes on and on.
A site called Tom’s Dispatch offers up a feature today about the way the military servant is bossing the American people. At a time of bitter debate over providing health care to Americans, a military that spends much more money gets what it wants. Corruption and cost overruns are rampant. A few may question the spending, but they are ignored.

One reason for the silence is the fact that so many of us work for the emperor’s tailor. The spending on weapons manufacturing is spread into every congressional district. The job of a congressman is not to question the pork, but to get his district a share of the bacon.

Pictures are from ” Special Collections and Archives,Georgia State University Library”.

Two Wrongs In The Right Wing

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on March 19, 2010

It was a story that PG wanted to believe. The headline was that Sean Hannity’s “Freedom Concert“,spent way too much on expenses, and way too little on the charities.
There are many bad things you can say about Sean Hannity. He is loud, aggressive, and tough to listen to. His “conservative” politics go against much of what PG sees as truth. To hear that he is a crook, that his much vaunted “Freedom Concert” is a scam, would be just what a lot of people want to hear. It may yet turn out to be the truth…only trouble is, his accuser is about as obnoxious as the “Great American”.

PG had not heard of Debbie Schulussel before today. She describes herself as a conservative, and claims to be an attorney. A look at her site reveals her to be a fanatic follower of Israel, and hater of Islam. ( She refers to CNN as the Crescent News Network) In one piece, she blames Barack Obama, Joe Biden, and Hillary Clinton for sparking the third Intifada.

Whether or not the “Freedom Concert” is a legitimate charity may never be known. PG did learn a bit about Mr. Hannity, in what PG heard on the Hannity show.

The way to support the troops, and the wars they fight, has traditionally been by paying taxes. In World War II, paying taxes and buying war bonds were seen as a patriotic duty. And yet, in time of war, the one thing Mr. Hannity consistently shouts for is “making the Bush Tax cuts permanent”.

In the run up to the invasion of Babylon, congress cut taxes. To cut taxes when you are preparing for war is unprecedented, and shows a stunning lack of responsibility. The result was budget deficits of a half trillion dollars a year. ( To be “fair” about this, it must be admitted that the current regime in Washington has increased the deficits considerably.)
Getting back to “support the troops” Hannity, it seems apparent that he wants to have his war, and his circus, at the same time. You do not pay for a war by cutting taxes.

Refugees From Our War

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on March 19, 2010

One of the results of “Operation Iraqi Freedom” has been refugees. In the ethnic fighting after the invasion, millions of people have left their homes. Many have moved out of their homes, into parts of Iraq where they can live. Many more have left the country entirely. Here are some

When one begins to research this business, he is surprised by the story of the Christians in Iraq. This is ironic, considering the “Christian Conservative” support for the war in America, and the outbreak of anti-Islamic feeling. Apparently, the Christian community in Iraq is not worthy of concern.

Christians once made up an estimated five percent of Iraq. Some of the oldest communities in the country were Christian. With the “ethnic cleansing” after the invasion, the Sunni/Shia militias apparently take a dim view of Christians. Many have found asylum in Syria.

An estimated 1.4 million Iraqi refugees are now in Syria. A country of twenty million, in a space the size of South Dakota, this must be a burden. Syria is a neighbor, and enemy, of Israel, and is routinely condemned in the American press as a result.

It is believed, though not provable, that Israel has taken in zero refugees from Iraq. The United States, a country bearing a great responsibility for the refugee crisis, had taken in an estimated 19,800 at the time the statistics were compiled.

Many of the Iraqis in Syria have become sex workers . Many of their customers are wealthy Saudis on holiday. Apparently, Syria is not as strict about Islamic rules as other countries in that region.

Pictures are from the ” Special Collections and Archives,Georgia State University Library”

Opposed To Murder

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on March 18, 2010

Saturday is Shock and Awe Day VIII. On March 20, 2003, the United States invaded Iraq. The occupation continues, at great cost. Hundreds of thousands of Iraqis died, and over a million are in exile. Thousands of American soldiers were killed or disabled, and the American economy is badly wounded.

There was a great deal of opposition to this invasion. PG went on record as being opposed. He sent letters to his three representatives in Congress to this effect.

His representative in the House at the time was a lady named Denise Majette. She had defeated Cynthia McKinney in the 2002 election, to the delight of many. Ms. Majette only served one term in Congress, before an ill advised run for the US Senate.

PG recieved a letter from Denise Majette after the start of the war. Ms. Majette wrote that the previous House had committed the United States to military action against Iraq. While she did not explicitly say so, she gave the impression that she agreed that going to war was a bad move.

US Senator Saxby Chambliss wrote a few months later. He said the world was a safer place without Saddam Hussein in power, and that the invasion was a success. PG wonders if Mr. Chambliss, or his staff, even read the original letter.

The other Senator at the time was “ZigZag” Zell Miller. Mr. Miller did not reply. This is understandable, because the original letter used the phrase ” you were elected to represent me”. Mr. Miller was appointed by the Governor to complete the term of a Senator who died in office.

Regime Change In Vatican City

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on March 17, 2010

As the saying goes, if you can’t say anything good about someone, don’t say anything at all. With that in mind, we will start this inquisition by saying that Christopher Hitchens is a good writer. He can choreograph nouns and verbs into chorus lines that are immensely entertaining, even when you want to slap his drunken face.

He also has the mixed blessing of working in the internet age. When Joe Blow says such and such, it is an easy matter to go to an archive and see what he said about this and that a few years ago. When you write a regular feature for Slate magazine, as Mr. Hitchens does, your searching is even easier.

The most recent bit of grandstanding by the drunken one regards the Catholic church. It seems as though the pedophile priest scandal has spread to Germany, and may involve Pope Benedict 16. ( PG is shocked, shocked I tell you, shocked.) Hitchens, who is a loud atheist, has a few choice opinions on the matter.

PG remembers a few things that Hitchens said about the war in Babylon. The idea at first was to build a case, using the rhetoric about Saddam, that the United States should invade Vatican City and implement regime change. This, of course, will not happen soon, any more than Germany will be punished for having 911 planned in Hamburg. There are different standards for Europe than for west asia. Nonetheless, it might be a fun bit of rhetoric, and a good excuse to show more pictures from the ” Special Collections and Archives,Georgia State University Library”

The post was surprisingly easy to find. In the Fall of 2002, America was debating the concept of an invasion of Iraq. ( At this time the sister war, in Afghanistan, was a year old. Afghanistan was invaded, without discussion, as an act of revenge for 911. We are still there, with no hope of getting out in the near future.) Regardless of what some say, there was considerable opposition to the war in Iraq. (*PG raises hand*).

In may have been his first piece for Slate, Mr. Hitchens supported the invasion. A key paragraph:

However—and here is the clinching and obvious point—Saddam Hussein is not going to survive. His regime is on the verge of implosion. It has long passed the point of diminishing returns. Like the Ceausescu edifice in Romania, it is a pyramid balanced on its apex (its powerbase a minority of the Sunni minority), and when it falls, all the consequences of a post-Saddam Iraq will be with us anyway. To suggest that these consequences—Sunni-Shi’a rivalry, conflict over the boundaries of Kurdistan, possible meddling from Turkey or Iran, vertiginous fluctuations in oil prices and production, social chaos—are attributable only to intervention is to be completely blind to the impending reality. The choices are two and only two—to experience these consequences with an American or international presence or to watch them unfold as if they were none of our business.

Now, it is eight years later. The Sunni-Shi’a rivalry became a savage civil war, with thousands of deaths and over a million refugees. Meddling from Iran has become a possible union between the two states. Fluctuations in oil prices have been a factor in a near economic meltdown in the USA. The choices of “two and only two” became one….we saw the horror in Iraq unfold, with a costly American presence, and yet had to helplessly watch from a distance, as if it was none of our business.

PG was going to engage in a bit of internet mischief, and suggest that the Catholic church is on the verge of collapse. An American invasion of Vatican City was needed, to implement the inevitable regime change on a manageable basis. However, after seeing how this worked out in Iraq, PG doesn’t think the joke would be very funny.

Prophet Not Without Honor

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on March 17, 2010

If it ever quits raining, PG is going to walk to the Chamblee library and return a book, and a cd. The cd is by Bob Dylan, and is a work of genius. The book is about the former Mr. Zimmerman, and is a piece of garbage. (BTW, Dylan is not the only Zimmerman to hit the big time. Ethel Merman was born Ethel Agnes Zimmerman.)

When returning cd’s to a library, you need to get a check in receipt. Once, PG returned a stack of cd’s to the Brookhaven library. When checking them in, one was missed by the scanner. A few days later, there was a note in the mail about an overdue cd.

The good news was, the cd was on the shelf when PG went back to investigate, and the matter was quickly settled. It did not help that the cd was a collection of disco music called “Shake your booty”.

“The freewheelin’ Bob Dylan” was released in the early sixties, when the man was barely old enough to buy a drink. There is not a bad song on it, and several are classic rock staples. At a time when mindless pop dominated pop music, here were thoughtful, moving lyrics.

In 1991, with America in a war frenzy, Mr. Dylan appeared on a music awards show. He performed “Masters of War”, at a time when the majority would be appalled if they could understand what he was singing. Mr. Dylan has been reinvented many times over the years, and often the lyrics get garbled.

Five years later, PG won tickets to a Bob Dylan concert. It was the last night of the Olympics, and the man was appearing at the House of Blues. ( Tickets were $80, so the radio contest is the only reason PG went). It was like hearing a good bar band, that did nothing but Dylan songs, with the man as the vocalist. Due to the mix of the sound, PG could not recognize many of the songs.

The book is “Bob Dylan: Prophet, Mystic, Poet” by Seth Rogovoy. It tells the Dylan tale as a story of Jewish prophecy. PG got to page 16, where the author claims that “Like a Rolling Stone” “almost single handedly revolutionized rock’n roll music”. Huh?

PG was eating dinner, and did not have anything else to read. He got to page 38. Nothing in the next 22 pages changed his mind away from ditching the book. How does nonsense like this get published?

Give A Blank

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on March 17, 2010

This is a two part post. The first is a story, borrowed from Gartalker. The second is a commentary on this story. The comment appears at the original post, in the digital version of saying something to someones face. ( Which is one of those things that many people like to boast about doing, only to resort to backside chatter when it is convenient.) The comment is going to be expanded a bit here. While we try to keep profanity to a minimum, sometimes you just have to say it.

A precious little girl walks into a petsmart shop and asks, in the sweetest little lisp, between two missing teeth, “Excuthe me, mithter, do you keep widdle wabbits?”

As the shopkeeper’s heart melts, he gets down on his knees so that he’s on her level and asks, “Do you want a widdle white wabbit, or a thoft and fuwwy, bwack wabbit, or maybe one like that cute widdle bwown wabbit over there?”

She, in turn, blushes, rocks on her heels, puts her hands on her knees, leans forward and says, in a tiny quiet voice, “I don’t think my python weally gives a thit.”

You could have told that story with the punch line “python weally cares”. It would have been just as funny, although it would have had one less lisp joke.

It is ironic that you use the “give a ____” line in this joke. I don’t know where that line came from, except that it usually has a cussword in the third part. It means that the person does not care about something. It is kind of an odd phrase for a number of reasons….when you give a damn ( to use the mildest expletive, and probably the original one for this saying), do you gift wrap it?

The F bomb is commonly used as the third word of this phrase. When you consider how much most adults prize intercourse, what would you give a f*** about? Considering the nature of the sacrifice, this does not say very much.

The third wirty dord frequently used in this saying is an onomatopoetic term for animal waste. Say it out loud…when the python is through with the wabbit, it will, indeed, give a thit.

Loudon Wainwright III

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on March 16, 2010

The New Yorker has a website, with some cool stuff. One of them is a video of Loudon Wainwright III, singing a song about some guy named Krugman. It seems to PG that Mr. Wainwright might be a good subject for a tribute.

Loudon Wainwright III was the son of a man who wrote for Life magazine, who was known as Loudon Wainwright Jr. The son of III is named Rufus, which is Albanian for Fifth. Either he skipped a level, likes to drink, or this is a coincidence. Rufus Wainwright is a musician also, with lots of units sold, and a stay or two in rehab.

The official LWIII website has a biography page, so if you care about such things you can go there. He writes little acoustic songs, many of which are hilarious. Early in his career, “Dead Skunk” became a hit, which was a mixed blessing. It became the song he was known for, but it was far from the best thing he did.

In addition to the Krugman song, there are three you tubes of Wainwright songs. A 95 year old lady dances to “Dead Skunk”. Johnny Cash does “The man who could not cry”, showing a bit of Grecian Formula. ( Wainwright is growing old and bald in honest fashion, even after shaving the puppy beard of his younger days.) There is a performance of “Motel Blues”, by the man. A fourth video, about climate change, is included at the end for those in the audience with entirely too much free time.

PG has seen Loudon Wainwright III in concert twice. In December of 1973, LWIII played at the Great Southeast Music Hall. He had a backup band, for some reason, and PG was not overwhelmed. After the show, PG talked to a high school classmate, and they went riding on the dirt roads behind the music hall smoking reefer.

In May of 1982, LWIII played a show by himself at a concert hall on North Decatur Road, which was formerly a Colonial grocery store and the Texas Tea Room. A friend of PG’s had a story to tell about the TTR.
“Maybe, the venue was called the Texas Tea Room—or the Texas something-or-another. I recall that I heard some male duo there. When I heard them, they were past their prime in terms of popularity, but perhaps they were making some sort of comeback. I keep trying to remember who I heard. I also remember going in there one time with short-shorts on. The shorts were totally inappropriate for the setting, but I had been somewhere else and just stopped by the hall (we’ll continue to call it the Texas Tea Room) on a whim. I vaguely remember some guy giving me grief about my attire. I don’t think I went home with him, and I’m sure that was an excellent decision.”
On that May evening 28 years ago, LWIII was spectacular. He had done a lot of shows in the previous 9 years, and had learned a few things about performing. The lines that got a good response were repeated, and played slow enough to understand the lyrics. This is a problem for many lyric based performers…if you don’t know their music, you will not enjoy the show. With Wainwright, he sang slow and loud, and you could hear all the words. You knew why the rest of the crowd was laughing so hard.
It is now 2010, and LWIII has not gone away. His records never did sell very well, and he sells his own product over the internet now. His hair is turning gray and falling out, unlike Johnny Cash.( maybe that is a wig in the video). The skunk has dried up, and his bones crushed into powder by the mean eighteen wheelers. The motel was torn down by the health department. Pictures for this entertainment are from the ” Special Collections and Archives,Georgia State University Library” The last picture is the Colonial store that became the Texas Tea Room. It is now a discount mattress store.

The Return Of Jeremiah Wright

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on March 15, 2010




Today is the ides of March. In 44bc, it was a very bad day for Julius Caesar. Today we have the Secret Service, and POTUS is a tiny bit safer. It is the people who get a blade between the ribs. Et tu Sonny?
Other than the bad toga day for Julius, PG could not think of much to say today. When this happens, he goes into the archives, and see what he has written on this day before. Today we have a doozy. This was written in first person, and will remain that way. We have also learned the secret of embedding videos, and will have some live entertainment.
This feature was written during the primaries of the 2008 election. BHO was the frontrunner, but his election was far from assured. The emergence of Jeremiah Wright was a crisis, but BHO gave a slick speech about race that had the liberals liberating. BHO went on to win the November election, and is roughly one third through his first term.

YouTube is an impediment to work. I was going to write some clever words to go with these pictures, but I looked at some videos first. All I wanted was the embed gibberish so I could show them to you, but YouTube has more videos on the same subject, and the only way to get rid of temptation is to give into it.
I am glad I got to see the videos of Jeremiah Wright. Friday I was hearing the tapes of him on the radio, and it was most discouraging. When I saw the videos, I realized that this was just another loudmouth for Jesus.
I worked for 6 years with a professional Jesus Worshiper. He was selfish, hateful, vulgar and loud. He frequently directed this anger at me. He used Jesus to hurt me, often  over trivial matters.
Once, this Professional Jesus Worshiper shouted me down, and humiliated me, in the name of Jesus. When he was through, he picked up the telephone and told his friend ” I never felt better in my life”.
One of the videos I found was a man in Harlem named Manning. He has a video where he talks about the Obama name on the shirt of a woman with a 54 D bra. That is not what the number 54 in my screen name refers to.
Mr. Manning says that Mr. Obama’s African father found a trashy white woman to have his baby, and that the child was called Barack. He said this from a pulpit with a sign attached…”Jesus is Lord”. This does not speak well of Jesus.
When you see these videos of Mr. Wright, you see people listening with great enthusiasm. At one point, two men exchange a high five behind Mr. Wright.
One thing I learned while working with the Professional Jesus Worshiper was the importance of the audience. These hatemongers do not just talk to themselves. They need an audience.
These audiences enable these poison spewers. To pray with a loudmouth who shames Jesus is morally equivalent to buying whiskey for an alcoholic.
Barack Obama is that audience.




SB 1155

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on March 14, 2010

The state of Georgia is in trouble. The money spent is billion dollars a year more than the money received. Atlanta needs to find a new source of water. What is our legislature going to do? Have a debate about abortion and race.

Billboards have appeared in Atlanta, saying “Black Children are an endangered species”. A url  to a website is shown. The basic concept is the abortion industry targets black women, as part of an eugenic effort to provide a more caucasian population.

HB 1155, the Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act, is a response to this.
“As currently drafted, HB 1155 would make it a 10-year felony for a physician to perform an abortion if a patient discloses that she seeks the procedure because of objections to the race or gender of the fetus…The physician and clinic staff would also be exposed to criminal prosecution, and civil suits, if the woman seeks the abortion because of “coercion.”
HT to Jim Galloway. Pictures from the ” Special Collections and Archives,Georgia State University Library”

Mr. Boyle And Mr. Wallace

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on March 13, 2010

PG is fixin’ to finish a book of short stories by TC Boyle, “If the river was whiskey”. The book is a collection of 16 stories by what someone called “the most versatile writer in America”. It is like eavesdropping on 16 different conversations in a bar…one is discussing the restaurant business and dealing with persnickety critics, while another tells the tale of a wall street slickie who sold his soul to the devil.

New Yorker magazine sometimes has what they call a fiction issue, with short stories by trendy writers. In one of these was an effort by T. Coraghessan Boyle. The picture beside the story showed a man with facial hair,earrings, and other facial decorations that might be interpreted as fey. (For what it is worth, Boyle is married with three children. “Whiskey”, published in 1989, is dedicated to the three younguns.)

Boyle has soldiered on. He is now known as TC (T is for Tom, and Coraghessan is his mother’s maiden name). This is an american story. TCB was born and raised in upstate New York, fond of heroin as a young man, only to detox. He learns how to write, moves to California, and does well.

“Whiskey” is great fun, and well worth the effort of carrying back from the Chamblee library. The versatility is tough to underestimate. The first story is about the restaurant critic from hell, which is followed by a girl who makes her boyfriends wear full body condoms. A PR agent tries to remake the image of a pre 911 arab, segues into a lady selling home alarm systems to alarmed mortgage owners, so that a freshly minted widow can mourn her husband by turning on every faucet and spigot in the house and leave them running. Mind you these are short stories, with none of the time commitment of a novel. You finish one vision, and are afraid to consider what might be in the next installment.

A comment at Amazon said that some of the stories seem like throwaways. A story called “The Little Chill” is an obvious satire on a movie with a similar title. (Full disclosure…PG never saw the movie.) If you are just looking for distraction on a train ride, there are no bad stories. Even if the english majors write snarky things, the rest of us can enjoy them.

Whatever is going on behind the eyes of Mr. Boyle has not killed him. Sad to say, the opposite seems to be the case with David Foster Wallace. A feature on the New Yorker website tells his tale.

As with Boyle, PG was introduced to Mr. Wallace through a magazine article. It was about tennis, which, to PG, is like watching paint dry. Mr. Wallace wrote a ten page article about tennis, and made it fun to read. Too bad he couldn’t apply the same magic to his own life.

Pictures for this feature are from the ” Special Collections and Archives,Georgia State University Library”.