Thursday, January 31, 2013

31 January 2013 Wall of rain

Cassi Creek:  From the cold front and 1600-mile long line of thunderstorms, we received 1.91 inches of rain with a follow-on 0.13 inches between midnight and 0800 today. 
          The roar from the creek was a palpable thing, a solid auditory force announcing the power of running water over solid ground.  It was audible in every room in the house.  Outside, it overpowered conversation. 
          We have a small amount of snow on the deck and steps.  I’ve spread de-icer on the front.  Lesson learned from previous opportunity. 
          I was unable to sleep last night.  I have a VA appointment this afternoon.  I’m really not looking forward to the trip in and back. 
          That’s enough non-information for today.  

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

30 January 2013 Waiting is the hardest part

Cassi Creek:         The wind was rising by 0500 this morning.  At 0630, I took Loki out to the mailbox to retrieve the newspaper.  The wind was whistling through the utility lines – 20 MPH at least.  We clocked 23 MPH in the back yard about the same time.  The news stations are talking about tornadoes in Tennessee without indicating where they may have been.  Best guess is around Nashville.  The forecast calls for severe storms, high winds, and slight risk of tornadoes.   That “slight” risk is the kicker that bothers me. 
          Loki is in mild early warning mode.   She is on guard, even in her sleep.  I hear her growling and barking in between snores.  If the weather deteriorates, she’ll start pacing and muttering.  If it deteriorates more, she’ll get as close to Gloria and me as she can and then refuse to move. 
          We’ve had some brief showers this morning, from a small line of cells out in front of the main line.  Now, at 1119, the leading edge of the main line of storms is brushing past us, sliding northeast.  Tracking in that direction means that we’ll be under the gun longer and with possibly larger storms embedded in the line.  I’d much rather it blow straight through.
          I find I am using Nexrad to view radar now more than ever before.  The latest updates to WeatherUnderground’s Wundermap have rendered it far less capable and less useful in tracking the approach of storms.  I generally know the history of a squall line after it has passed us by.  It’s the approach I’m concerned about, and the closeness of the cells that may hit us.  Many users have complained about the new map but the deed is done and the utility of the map has suffered. 
          Now back to the wait.  Hopefully, no film at 2200!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

29 January 2013 Up, Down, Anyway The Wind Blows

Cassi Creek:  The past two weeks have provided us the gamut of winter weather, with cold spells, heavy rains, snow, sleet, and ice storms.  For most vicinities that is sufficient.  For the Tennessee Valley and the southern Appalachians, there is still part of the panoply to play out. 
          The jet stream has shifted, throwing a trough eastward.  This normal fluctuation has pulled a large cold air mass downward and into conflict with the standard, Gulf flow.  This is going to trigger the winter tornado season for the Deep South and other regions in the normal path of the cold fronts these troughs can drag downward.  
          The greatest tornado risk seems to be occurring today.  Tomorrow, we should see heavy rains, some thunderstorms, and the potential for severe storms, including tornadoes. 
          Tornadic activity commonly strikes our region in the evening hours.  Visualizing tornadoes in the dark is difficult in developed areas.  Picking them out in a dark rural area is much, much, more difficult.  Add in a network of valleys, mountains, and forests to watch the spotting difficulty leap upward exponentially. 
          Tomorrow, the storms are forecast to arrive here in the afternoon.  That makes them easier to spot and track.  The weather service office in Morristown does a great job tracking radar signatures, and getting out warnings.  But spotter information can really amplify path prediction when the storms touch down and become life threatening rather than just potential danger. 
          The ground is saturated and the trees have already been subjected to high winds.  The NWS has also issued a high wind advisory for our area, mostly over the border into North Carolina, but still likely to affect us as well.  We really don’t need any blow downs this week. 
          The forecast for Thursday morning suggest some snow showers during the time I need to be on the road into Mt. Home.  We shall see what the rest of the working week brings us.

Monday, January 28, 2013

28 January 2013 The primary advantage of rural life

Cassi Creek:  We reside 30-45 minutes from any healthcare facilities, libraries, grocery stores, or any other feature of urban living that can’t be found or obtained at a gas station/convenience store.
          We had need of laboratory services this morning.  We left at 0900 and returned at 1130 after a five-minute procedure. 
          However, to offset that, we have a quiet place to live where the stars are visible.  There is abundant bird life to keep Gloria amused.  We have room for a safe firing lane, fishing, and just enjoying the relative lack of sirens, blaring car speakers, and the other annoyances that life in even the smallest of urban areas brings. 

Sunday, January 27, 2013

27 January 2013 Will it snow on Thursday?

Cassi Creek:  The last two weeks have featured ice and snow, making travel difficult and closing many businesses and schools.
          Two weeks ago, my Thursday appointment at VA was canceled due to heavy sleet and snow.  Last Thursday I cancelled my Friday morning dermatology appointment on the basis of a winter storm advisory. 
          This next Thursday is now calling for the possibility of snow following thunderstorms on Wednesday.  I’m beginning to see the Al Capp character Joe Btfsplk: The world's worst jinx,” running around the region. 
          The comic strip,  Li'l Abner” was actually set in the state of Kentucky.  However, the region I live in could double for Dog Patch if one looks at it with reasonable leeway.  So could the states of Missouri and Arkansas if the same leeway is applied.
          This has been a hard winter compared to last year.  We can expect more winter storms and cold temperatures.  As long as the roads remain clear, we’ll be all right.  If it gets icy again, we’ll hunker down and deplete the pantry.  Thus, the cold weather can rotation system. 

Saturday, January 26, 2013

26 January 2013 One small step One large slip.

Cassi Creek: 
          The ice that covered everything yesterday is even more treacherous today. 
          As the air temperature climbed upward of the freezing point, I put the dog on her long lead and headed off for the newspaper.  One tenuous step down and then another.  The 2nd did me in.  I don’t know if the dog pulled on her lead or if the fault lay entirely in my actions. 
          I found myself falling outward and down.  I managed to land sitting on the steps.  No apparent harm but the rapidity of losing all control over ambulation is a warning that I can’t ignore.   I found it best to simply slide down the remaining steps until I could stand up on the ground. 
          The ground and driveway were equally treacherous.  It took, I believe, ten minutes or so to shuffle out and back with the newspaper. 
          I have a pair of cable crampons that would have prevented, I believe, this fall.  I wore them yesterday and had no problem on the ice while bringing in firewood.  They are the largest size the company makes and have to be worn over regular shoes.  Unfortunately, my feet are large and it is difficult to climb into the crampons and strap them on.  Yesterday, Gloria helped me strap in.  Today, I didn’t want to bother her.  I think I’ll be smart and let her help me put them on before going out to retrieve the mail. 
          The back deck is still a solid sheet of water-covered ice melting slowly in the sunlight.  The front will still be mostly in shadow at 1100 and I can only hope the ice melt I scattered this morning will have made some difference.

Friday, January 25, 2013

25 January 2013 Slicker than…

Cassi Creek:
          “Slicker than deer guts on a doorknob”  Thanks to the Dillards for an apt description of the meteorological conditions that the rising sun revealed. 
          After a very broken night that included stoking the stove at about 0430, I woke to the sound of what I hoped was rain hitting the metal roof.  In the dim, pre-sunrise light I put the lead on Loki and headed out for the road to retrieve the newspaper. 
          The first step onto the stairs revealed a layer of ice covering everything.  The driveway was treacherous as marbles on glass; the lawn was only slightly safer.  The five steps from the driveway to the mailbox became a shuffle; as did the return from the road to the drive.  I’ve put ice-melt on the front steps.  It hasn’t helped much. 
          As of 1204, we are watching it rain and then freeze.  The short term forecast calls for more winter mix precipitation all day.  We seem to be on the gun-target line.  The worst of the ice is tracking over us.    Ice is building up quickly on exterior surfaces.  We have firewood but it is outdoors, of course, and down steps. 
          I had an appointment at VA this morning at 0840.  I rescheduled it yesterday after seeing the forecast for today.  That was wise.  The mail carrier actually delivered mail today.  He said it was a solid sheet of ice on the roads. 
          The county snowplow/salt truck made one pass on the road.  I doubt it will do much good in the face of the rain and freezing rain streaming in.
Shabbat Shalom

Thursday, January 24, 2013

24 January 2013 Let them secede if they wish.

Dumb America

Garry Wills





Cassi Creek:  But don’t let them in again if they do.
The two articles linked above provide some insight into the resurgence of racism and anti-government attitudes that have followed the election of Barak Obama to the Presidency of the United States. 
          I share some genetic heritage with Garry Wills.  My mother’s family lived in Virginia before the Revolutionary War.  It had branches in Tennessee, Alabama, Arkansas, and Missouri before taking up arms for the Confederacy. 
Wills found he enjoyed his southern relatives more than his northern family.  I had few relatives, from that lineage, all of whom I enjoyed.  But I grew up in a border state and my allegiance and interests were strongly northern.  Despite residing in a beautiful region of N.E. Tennessee, I am still politically a Yankee as ever, and will remain so.  

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

23 January 2013 Instant weather replay?

23 January 2013  Instant weather replay?
Cassi Creek:  I am slated to see a dermatologist Friday. 
The forecast for Friday’s weather is:
          Snow, freezing rain, and sleet likely before 11am, then freezing rain and sleet likely between 11am and 1pm, then rain and sleet likely after 1pm. Cloudy, with a high near 37. Southeast wind around 5 mph becoming southwest in the afternoon. Chance of precipitation is 60%.
I had an appointment at VA last Thursday that was cancelled due to sleet, snow, and freezing rain.  I have one tomorrow, Thursday, that should be kept given the rather innocuous forecast for tomorrow.  Friday concerns me because of the travel risk.  The roads into Johnson City are narrow, curving, and hilly; with no shoulders.  Cell phone service is spotty along the worst sections.  I’d rather not drive those sections in freezing precipitation. 
          The local drivers, all too often think that they are excellent drivers because they watch and imitate NASCAR races.  If we could somehow confine them to an oval enclosure, and let them play out their fantasies, the roads would be safer for the rest of us. 
          Despite the benefits that such a plan would provide, even with the most cautious of drivers at the wheel, driving in and on freezing rain is highly dangerous and is unsafe at any speed.  The laws of physics, including friction (traction), bodies in motion (direction), velocity (speed), and other factors that are better applied to and calculated upon, dry pavement; are merciless and unbending.  This translates to a markedly increased potential for loss of vehicular control even if one has the best of skills and the best of equipment.  I’d rather be off the roads if the current forecast for Friday holds. 
          Loki alerted me to the resident flock of turkeys marching into the yard.  She wanted desperately to be allowed outside to chase them.  They can fly away from her with the power and speed of a catapult-launched fighter from an aircraft carrier.  I held her inside until they moved on and crossed the creek.  Two males were with the flock today.  One of them is beginning to contest with the other who is older and bigger, for breeding rights.  The full display is impressive, but the females aren’t interested in either of the males.  Food is their priority today.  Such is life in rural Tennessee. 

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

22 January 2013 Cold in the high lonesome

Cassi Creek:  The last 24 hours have featured the passage of a cold front that dropped the temperatures into the glacial interior range.  We accomplished a multi-purpose trip to Greeneville.  It is a beautiful day if one can overlook the risk of instant hypothermia. 
          Nothing of consequence to add today.

Monday, January 21, 2013

21 January 2013 Inauguration Day

Cassi Creek:  Today is Inauguration Day as well as Martin Luther King’s Day.  That makes it a double federal holiday.  However, most people who work for non-government businesses are at work today.  Service industry workers, health care professionals and ancillary staff are busy, understaffed and overworked, as usually the case for any holiday. 
          I celebrated by renewing my drivers’ license for another six years.  There was no reason to go into the office for renewal.  I spent about 10 minutes and $20.00 online using the state’s program and my debit card.  I should have the new license within 3 weeks. 
          I’ll be happy when the Congress returns to work.  They should all be chained to their desks and fed bread and water until they become productive and cooperative.  They were elected to work for the nation and its citizens, not to crank out tax breaks for corporations and the very wealthy. 
          The new “National Gun Appreciation Day” another shill organization for the firearms industry and the easily confused, took place on Saturday.  There were at least 5 gun related injuries occurring at 3 different gun shows that happened Saturday.  They all belong in the TDTF file. 

Five shot at 'Gun Appreciation Day' events

By Steve Benen    -  
Mon Jan 21, 2013 8:00 AM EST
This probably is a lower than normal incidence of gun-related injuries compared to most weekends.  No one organizing the “Gun Appreciation” event seems overly concerned that a neo-nazi group is involved in the event.  While the NRA and the 2nd Amendment groupies always like to point toward Hitler when crying about tyrants seizing private guns; it is somehow OK to share the demand that all sorts of guns are available to everyone who can pay the price with neo-nazis.  Strange bedfellows! Of course, when the rank and file is unable to differentiate between fascists, socialists, and toy soldier militias, the important thing becomes allying with anyone who will share the misinformation and chant the slogans.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

20 January 2013 I should care but I don’t seem to

Cassi Creek:  The Constitutional requirements have been fulfilled.  Barak Hussein Obama has been sworn in as POTUS according to the laws of these United States.   
          Today, there are various lesser celebratory events and functions taking place in the District of Columbia.  Tomorrow, there will be the parade, the public administration of the oath of office, the inaugural balls, and all the other hoopla associated with the peaceful transition of power from one administration to another.   
          Truman is the first President that I was aware of.  Eisenhower is the first President whose inaugural I recall.  Kennedy’s inaugural is the first that really meant anything to me.  Lyndon Johnson’s was an occasion of shock and pain.  Nixon’s to me, came with the likelihood of my demise in an ever-expanding war.  Ford’s signaled an attempt at unification.  Carter left me wishing Ford had beaten him at the polls. 
          The Reagan inaugurals were signals that greed, malfeasance, and corruption were loose in the land, Bush the elder seemed to be an attempt to clean up and cover up the mess left by the senile Reagan. 
          Clinton, the first of my generation allowed himself to become mired in a sex scandal and ushered in the GOP practice of trying to reverse the election results of anyone who defeated the GOP candidate by obstruction, endless investigations, and impeachment battles.  Bush the younger marked a return to the Reagan policies and practices that nearly destroyed the global economy. 
          The 2008 election of Obama was evidence of recognition that new coalitions of voters were needed, and that the racism, xenophobia, and religious intolerance initially crystallized in the Nixon southern strategy and the Reagan welfare queen strategy could be revived and amplified by the likes of Palin; and that education and intellect were unimportant to voters who listened only to Fox News and bible thumpers.
          I voted for Obama in 2008 and in 2012.  I would have preferred Hillary Clinton in 2008.  Obama seems, to me, to have been more concerned about being liked by the populace and the Congress.  That popularity will never become evident at the level he would like.  He needs to begin playing hardball.  He is the POTSUS, not a friend to each and every elected official or voter.  Fully 50% of the nation will never like him. 
          He has a major economic fight before him, a war in Afghanistan to discontinue, and the looming contest over gun control.  None of these will lead to much popularity for him. 
          I think he has the potential to win these battles.  I hope he does.  We need him to toughen up and make it evident to the GOP/teavangelists that they will not be allowed to dictate U.S. policies currently and in the future. 
          Tomorrow is the inauguration.  I should be more excited about it.  But I can’t muster the energy.  The historical impact of the Obama presidency was made manifest in 2008.  The four years that were his first term became an exercise in working around the hatred and racism that has been directed at him by citizens who exemplify the worst of America, and by politicians who are prepared to change the U.S. into a nation of theocrats who are at war with education and intellect.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

19 January 2013 Hot battery cold stove

Cassi Creek:  During the last week, I noticed that my laptop was running at what I felt to be an overly hot temperature with a nearly maximum fan speed.  The diagnostic tool onboard courtesy of Toshiba confirmed my concerns.  I blew all the dust off the intake and outflow screens and stacked a second cooling pad beneath it.  This helped a bit until yesterday. 
          Since I record and upload weather data every 5-15 minutes, depending upon the proximity to unpleasant weather, this laptop remains up and running about 16 hours/day.  Laptops are designed to be taken off line between usage periods.  The heat buildup that occurs if they are run over longer periods can damage the CPU and other components. 
          Last night I recalled that Li-ion batteries can overheat and even cause fires.  Since I leave my battery in place all the time, I pulled the battery and watched the numbers slope downward.  It also occurred to me that I had been promised a second battery at the end of a two-year warrantee period.  A quick search turned up a new battery.  Naturally, it was not labeled to indicate which computer it fit.  So I popped it in and watched the numbers drop even lower.  I’m mildly surprised that the solution was so close at hand.  Toshiba batteries are expensive.  I’ve never found a knock off that fit correctly.
          While trying to cool the computer, I was also trying to get the wood stove to burn at a higher temperature.  We bought a load of oak cut to length for our smaller than normal wood stove.  The wood is extremely dense and has been hard to get to burn.  The air flow though the firebox seems somehow restricted.   I spend several hours fussing with the stove on nights when we burn it.  Last night, at about the time I changed computer batteries, the stove wood caught well and burned hotly through the rest of the night.  I hope I can coax it into better performance tonight.  I found a couple of air inlets that may have been blocked by ash or bits of unburned wood.  Five minutes of scraping and brushing may have helped.  We’ll see what tonight brings.
          The sun is shining brightly and the snow is melting.  For the first time in a week, we are under no severe weather alerts.

Correction:  Gloria tells me that she suggested I check the battery.  So that must be how it occurred.  Her memory seems to be better than mine these days

Friday, January 18, 2013

18 January 2013 Snow Day

Cassi Creek:  Four days of rain gave us a total rainfall of 6.06 inches (15.3924 cm) for the first 18 days of January. 
          The area has been under simultaneous flood warnings, flood watches, and winter weather advisory.  Yesterday we watched the rain end.  The transition from rain to sleet to snow took perhaps 15 minutes with snowfall then occurring at a rate of an inch/hour. 
          The regional schools are shut down for snow after being closed due to flooded roads.  The university ETSU, is shut down.  Civil authorities have asked people to stay off the roads if at all possible.  While the snowfall totals were in the range of 3-5 inches of heavy, wet snow, the sleet that fell before the snow has provided a frozen layer under the following snow.  Roads are treacherous.  Our road was half-heartedly plowed.  Living astride the Washington/Green county line, at the extreme reach for both counties, we are overlooked frequently. 
          Today it is cold, sunny, with a thick crust on the snow.  Last night’s footsteps are icy pockets on the deck and steps; treacherous and slow to melt in the short sunlight period we have at this part of the valley.
          We will join the local students and enjoy a snow day.
Shabbat Shalom

Thursday, January 17, 2013

17 January 2013 You may fire when you are ready, Gridley

"You may fire when you are ready Gridley." Commodore George Dewey, 1 May 1898, at the Battle of Manila Bay during the Spanish-American War.”

The gun debate is nothing to kid about

“If the gun debate gets any more juvenile, the participants will need strollers.”
Cassi Creek:  The battle of Manila Bay, 2 May 1898, signaled the demise of the Spanish Empire in Asia.
Dewey crossed the T on the poorly prepared Spanish fleet at Manila. 
“At 5:41 with the now famous phrase, "You may fire when ready, Gridley, the Olympia's captain was instructed to begin the destruction of the Spanish flotilla.
3, July 1898, the Battle of Santiago de Cuba resulted in the U.S. Navy destroying the Spanish Flotilla, bringing about the end of the Spanish empire in the New World. 
As a result, the U.S. Navy became a formidable navy, capable of bringing force to bear as directed by the United States civil government.  With a presence in two oceans, it effectively elevated the United States to the role of a great power, a player on the world stage that it has maintained since the Spanish-American War.
“At 7:45 a.m., after Captain Gridley messaged Dewey that only 15 rounds of 5" ammunition remained per gun, he ordered an immediate withdrawal. To preserve morale, he informed the crews that the halt in the battle was to allow the crews to have breakfast”
In recognition of George Dewey's leadership during the Battle of Manila Bay a special medal known as the Dewey Medal was presented to the officers and sailors under Admiral Dewey's command. Dewey was later honored with promotion to the special rank of Admiral of the Navy; a rank that no one has held before or since in the United

          The battle for gun control is going to be fought tooth and nail by Obama and whomever he can enlist to help him.  The opposition, the NRA, Gun Owners of America, and every toy-soldier militia, gun collector and teavangelist in the nation, posing as “the good guys” but primarily supporting gun manufacturers, arms dealers, who are actually an arm of “the bad guys.” 
          The Congress will vote along party lines in order that the GOP/teavangelists can present their selves in support of “gun rights” and collect their back door re-election funds. 
          Obama has sufficient public support for changing the gun control laws and regulations if he moves now and moves effectively.  He needs to engage at every level, just as Dewey did at Manila and Farragut at Mobile.  If he allows the public concern to be distorted by the NRA’s propaganda mill, it will be too easy for Congress to do what it has always done, nothing. 
          It’s time to cross the T on the NRA.  You may fire when ready, Biden!”

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

16 January 2013 Clinton Presidency Replay

Cassi Creek:  The GOP/teavangelists seem to be unable to assimilate their losses in the 2012 presidential election.  The 2009 attempts to block everything Obama proposed failed to generate a defeat for Obama in 2012.  This indicates that four years of bigotry, lies, and delusional behavior by “birthers, truthers, teavangelists,” and other denizens of the Fox News unreality world have been unable to convince the portion of the American electorate that can think independently that Obama should have been removed from office.
          The Congress has already displayed the polarization that the teavangelists and other members count upon to obstruct Obama’s programs and efforts to serve as an effective President.  The public animosity toward Congress seems to have no impact upon the GOP, the teavangelists, or the other groups that hate Obama for political and racial reasons. 
          The inability to defeat him in open elections giving way to a somewhat less virulent repeat of the way Bill Clinton was treated by the right wing.  Obama will become a target for everyone willing to call for his impeachment.  The GOP/teavangelists are not only willing to destroy the national economy if they fail to obtain their political goals; they are equally willing to bring down a system of government that has produced peaceful, orderly, and legal changes of government throughout the entire history of our government. 
          It is time to remind the teavangelists and the NRA that their propaganda and hatred offer nothing but anarchy and disorder.  The vast right wing conspiracy that targeted Clinton for removal from office has never gone away.  It is now better funded and more hateful than ever.  

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

15 January 2013 What’s an ark

Cassi Creek:  the rain began Sunday evening and has continued with very little intermission through this morning.  We have received 2.78 inches of rain. 
          The morning hike with Mike has been suspended for reasons of comfort, personal safety, and consideration for Loki, who usually accompanies me on the morning excursion.  The creek is high, fast, muddy, and loud. 
          The forecast calls for continued rain of light to moderate intensity.  Given the stalled nature of the front producing this rain, we may still be receiving rain at this time tomorrow. 
          Stay tuned for updates.
Today’s column by Richard Cohen in the Washington Post is a good commentary on gun control and the nature of the opposition to gun control.

The debacle of gun control

, Published: January 14

“Once, after I had written about gun control, a guy called to differ and said that had the Jews of Germany been armed, the Holocaust never would have happened. That assertion, so ahistorical as to be almost laughable, stopped me in my tracks because it went to the black heart of the gun-control debate: It’s not about guns. It’s about the government…”
Also of importance – Happy Birthday, Suz!

Monday, January 14, 2013

14 January 2013 We are the enemy our founders warned us about

Cassi Creek:         The Johnson City Press, printed 13 January 2013, carried a letter from a reader concerning an appearance by Congressman Phil Roe on WKPT concerning gun legislation and the 2nd Amendment. 
          Mr. Roe’s official web page identifies him as a supporter of hunting and other shooting sports.  I find no reason to disagree with this position.  What does concern me is the statement attributed to Mr. Roe.  According to the letter submitted by James Bitter of Johnson City, Mr. Roe said gun owners need guns to protect their selves from the government.
          That seems to be a rather odd position for a member of Congress to take, since members of Congress are, by definition, part of the government. 
          The nature of this comment makes me think that Mr. Roe is less concerned about hunting and target shooting interests, and more concerned with echoing the pronouncements of the NRA. 
          Yesterday’s political talk shows included an appearance by the NRA President.  The manner in which he predicted that there will be no Congressional action to reduce the availability of assault-style guns and high capacity magazines displayed the arrogance indicating the NRA believes it owns Congress.  Every other NRA official who has appeared on TV over the last years has displayed this same indifference.  They make it plain that they can tell Congress how to vote on any matter pertaining to gun laws. 
          The statement by Congressman Roe is a prime example.  A physician with military experience who grew up in Tennessee, Roe knows that hunting is about careful preparation, patience, and felling the animal with a single, well-placed shot that conserves the food value of the animal.  It is not about spraying bullets as rapidly as possible.  No well-trained hunter needs a 30 round magazine.  A bolt-action rifle does the trick. 
          The NRA is spreading the idea that our citizens will need to rise up and seize the power to govern from our existing government.  While it is happy to spread such delusional propaganda in order to general panic buying of guns and ammunition; the NRA leaders know that there is absolutely no chance that a toy soldier militia will be able to defeat the various branches of the United States armed forces. The “tyrannical government” that the NRA propaganda mill warns against will only come about on movie screens and in the delusional thoughts of teavangelists who slept through high school civics classes. 
          If Congressman Roe honestly believes that we citizens need to own military grade rifles in order to protect ourselves from our own government, then Mr. Roe should recall that he is part of that government.  Rather than proclaim that government is evil and that it should be considered as an enemy; perhaps the best thing for Mr. Roe to do is to end his participation in an agency he fears. 
          With that suggestion, we need to find out just how much the NRA and its minions such as Grover Norquist, are providing into the election and re-election campaigns of senators and representatives.  What does it cost to buy a Congressperson for the NRA?  What does it cost to purchase a Senator?  Once elected, how much does it cost to keep them in office so that they can vote as the NRA directs? 

Sunday, January 13, 2013

13 January 2013 It’s colder than…

Cassi Creek:  It’s cold enough to recall two dozen metaphors and countless euphemisms of the less polite variety; most dealing with some portion of someone or something’s anatomy.  Except, it’s not cold at all today, hasn’t been for the last several days.  Currently the temperature, recorded at 1428, is 75.70 °F.  For the second day in a row, we have the heat turned down below ignition and the windows open in several rooms. 
          The unusually warm weather concerns me.  The potential for severe weather is increased by the convective patterns in the atmosphere.  However, the Severe Storms Prediction Center has forecast no severe weather for this region.  This branch of the NWS has become remarkably adept at recognizing conditions that predispose to dangerous weather and in issuing the appropriate cautions, watches, and warnings. 
          What has been forecast for us is a period of heavy rains beginning tonight.  We can use the increased water levels in the aquifer but if the soil becomes saturated and high winds return to the area the cost in trees and lost utility services will be high. 
          There is the potential for another “winterless” winter this year. 
          We ran a recovery mission this afternoon, to retrieve an earring that Gloria lost yesterday while visiting a friend.  The objective was found in the driveway, at a gate that required her to exit her car.  She worried about the loss all night after discovering it.  When we reached the area she thought was holding the earring, it took less than 60 seconds of searching to find it.  Fortunately, it was undamaged. 
          We’re looking for an uneventful week.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

12 January 2013 Gun ownership and drug testing

Cassi Creek:         There has been a very strong demand from the political and social right wing that recipients of unemployment insurance, disability compensation, food stamps, and other funds from social safety net programs be required to submit to and pass screening for illegal drug use.  This demand has been emanating from the religious and political right, who intend it to be used to eliminate such payments for any recipient who tests positive.  There is little understanding among the American Taliban and their minions, just how easy it is to damage the necessary chain of custody that identifies the donor.  Nor, do they understand the unacceptably high incidence of false positive results.  Both of these situations can delay reliable and timely analysis, and the latter requires costly confirmation that further introduces time delays into the process. 
          These delays, as well as the logistic nightmare that is required to collect, transport, analyze, and report results for each donor add much to the expense of analysis and little to preventing the use of illegal drugs by recipients of welfare and other public funds.  The overall percentage of illegal drug users remains at about 13% of all persons tested.  Despite the costs, monetary and other, the GOP/teavangelists and other fractions of the American Taliban want to require such drug testing; and to require the recipient to pay for the tests.  To require people who are already in dire straits economically to lay out a large amount of money sorely needed for food, utilities, and health care, to pay for a drug test that is probably negative, is just another demonstration of the lack of concern the right wingers have for the citizens of America. 
          This same political/social group is largely responsible for gun and ammunition purchases in America.  While there are progressives who hunt and who engage in target shooting, they are now and will remain a minority. 
          There is currently much concern about the mental health status of spree shooters.  The last several such mass murderers have all had a history of taking anti-depressants, and other psycho-active drugs that are suggestive of mental health disorders.  While testing for these drugs is not indicative that those testing positive will become spree shooters or will, at some time become more unstable and dangerous to others, their presence may be helpful in deciding who is allowed to own and carry firearms. 
          I can imagine the outcry if legislation requiring drug testing be performed and reviewed by law enforcement agencies before individuals are allowed to purchase any type of firearm.  The right wingers, who have no problem forcing such tests upon the recipients of food stamps and unemployment insurance, will almost certainly become apoplectic in a mass display of self-righteousness.  They will object to “illegal searches.”  They will rail about the delays inserted into the gun purchase process.  They will claim it to be an unconstitutional restriction upon their 2nd amendment rights.
          Since no one is required to own a firearm, no one needs to submit to drug testing if they are afraid they will not pass the test.  The waiting periods already in place in some states for gun purchases have been found legal already. 
          The more I think about this method of screening firearms buyers, the more I like it.  It will help to eliminate the mentally ill purchasing guns and ammunition. It will insert a mandatory delay in the purchasing process.  It will certainly work toward stopping gun show parking lot sales and other undocumented sales.  While it will not eliminate such sales or stop such killing sprees, it will, in concert with other legal changes to the purchase of firearms and ammunition, work toward the forms of gun control that most Americans may be able to agree are acceptable and valid.  If our American Taliban object, they are welcome to move to nations where fewer restrictions prohibit them from acquiring guns immediately and where their abuse of illegal substances and their mental health status will not be a consideration.  Afghanistan and Syria come to mind.

Friday, January 11, 2013

11 January 2013 Manhood from the trunk of a car

Cassi Creek:         Over the years I have attended, perhaps a maximum of five gun shows.  At one, I bought a knife, at another, a reproduction Lehman plains rifle.  At the others, I bought nothing.  I’ve paid the entry fee that lets me wander the display tables indoors and then leave the building and return
          The indoor portion of the “show” operates essentially as does a brick and mortar business.  The dealer/seller must run background checks and fill out the same paperwork, as does the salesman in the gun store.  The laws and regulations about the sale of firearms and ammunition are expected to be enforced by every person who has a booth or table on the selling floor. 
          The selling floor contains more than firearms.  There are more and less common bullets to feed the appetites of the various guns in use today.  There are knives of all sorts, gunsmith tools, holsters, military style clothing, and all manner of attachments, accouterments, and surplus military gear. 
          Primitive weapons – reproduction muzzle loading weapons – archery equipment, and the toys and tools that go along with them attract their own pool of viewers and buyers. 
          There are certain to be concealed carry classes that allow one to complete the training and paperwork that is required by the various states before they will issue a carry permit.  There will be demonstrations by factory representatives to encourage sales and demonstrations of various new ways to make use of firearms for recreational and hunting purposes.  Of course, the NRA and other gun lobby organizations will be there with their hands reaching for your pockets. 
          If one is interested at all in any form of shooting sports, there is likely to be something to entice you to open your wallet and lay out some dollars. 
          The inside operations of gun shows are generally compliant with state and federal laws. 
          Everyone who has ever attended a Grateful Dead concert has navigated a parking lot sales scene that specializes in selling things that are on the far side of legal and/or ethical.  At a Dead show, the merchandise was often mind altering. In which instance, the various police agencies tasked with preventing such sales were active.  Or, it may have violated copyright laws; in which instance the band had its own system of preventing those sales. 
          In addition, it is in the parking lots of gun shows that the nature of the beast changes from legal into marginal.  The show becomes more of an unregulated flea market or swap meet.  Anyone can sell anything that is legal to own, to buy, or to sell in the county, state, and nation where the show takes place. 
          Want a rifle, pistol shotgun, or other weapon without the hassle of the background check?  Want to avoid generating a gun sale paper trail for reasons that no one else need know?  Have an old conviction that might make it illegal for you to own a firearm; too young to legally own a pistol?  All those reasons become inconsequential in the parking lot.  Someone may have exactly the weapon you want in the trunk of their car.  Someone may not care that you are buying the gun for a manic-looking teenager.  Your felonious status may not concern the guy with the shotguns and pistols under a blanket in the back of a van.  He probably will never know that you’re under treatment for some form of mental illness.  At least, we can all hope that information never surfaces behind the investigation to discover where someone obtained a weapon that they were not legally able to posses.
          The parking lot was known for the ready availability of illegal substances when the Grateful Dead were in town.  The parking lot at gun shows is equally known for the ready availability of items that transfer from hand-to-hand under the guise of “sales between friends,” trades carried out with no exchange of money,” and other ways to circumvent the laws that are intended to regulate the trade in firearms and the possession of firearms by proscribed persons. 
          The Grateful Dead, the band itself, came to realize that the parking lot scene was injurious to their business of providing musical entertainment.  In the final years of their existence, they began efforts to clean up the parking lot by appealing to their fan base and by going so far as to cancel performances when the parking lot became untenable and overly populated with people who were not there for the music. 
          The time has come for gun owners, gun enthusiasts, and collectors, to close down the parking lot.  The NRA and the other gun lobbyists are not there to “preserve the 2nd amendment and “our personal freedoms.”  They are there to keep the fear of gun seizures that will not take place in the minds of people who are easily fooled by propaganda and corporate lies.  They are there to stoke the panic buying of guns and ammunition.  If they can generate the sale of illegal guns to those who think that, they need them to “fight a tyrannical government, “Well, that’s alright too. 
          What it comes down to is that the NRA is encouraging American males to equate masculinity with an overloaded gun locker.  The gun-loving American males need to realize that they are responsible for cleaning up the parking lots.  The only scenario which I believe might ever lead to gun confiscation is that unchanging pseudo-machismo refusal of the NRA to behave like realistic hunters and target shooters rather than the toy soldiers who think that they will someday be the saviors of society.  It isn’t reality and it isn’t at all believable by anyone not in need of ECT on a weekly basis.  

Thursday, January 10, 2013

10 January 2013 1776 all over again

Cassi Creek:
Stanley McChrystal: Gun Control Requires 'Serious Action'
“Said McChrystal, "I personally don't think there's any need for that kind of weaponry on the streets and particularly around the schools in America. I believe that we've got to take a serious look -- I understand everybody's desire to have whatever they want -- but we have to protect our children and our police and we have to protect our population. And I think we have to take a very mature look at that."
          Forced into retirement for publically criticizing the POTUS, McChrystal had standing to step into the anti-Obama role that the NRA and other firearms pushers would like to have available to serve as a credible spokesperson.  Instead, Gen McChrystal chose to poke the NRA and its minions in the eye with a bayonet.  The retired general stated that there is no need or reason for private citizens to own military grade rifles such as the AR-15 platform rifles currently available. 
          He made a point of discussing the performance of the ammunition used in the “black” or AR assault style rifles.  These are bullets designed to kill or cripple.  While they could be used for hunting, the round will destroy much of the edible meat on a deer.  The common “hunting use” for AR rifles is to kill “varmints,” and coyotes. animals that serve only as living  targets for the shooter who wants to kill for recreation. 
          I’m going to enjoy the NRA’s efforts to discredit General McChrystal.  It should be highly amusing.  LaPierre, the NRA’s mouthpiece, may just have painted himself into a corner, wearing his very own varmint suit.
          Notice the casual resemblance of the toy soldier in the cartoon above to a varmint – noisy, destructive of environment, and easily targeted by weapons it has no chance of evading or escaping.  I continue to be amused by the assumption among the 2nd amendment extremists that they, in their camouflage clothing with their “black” riles, can take on and defeat any government, let alone a tyrannical government.
          Cue the varmint call, set it for local militia.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

9 January 2013 Truck load of a different art

Cassi Creek:  Is there a difference between today’s anarchists and the teavangelists who intend to demolish government by grid locking the current legislative processes?
          The standard image of the political anarchist is still derived from the decades-old “Mad Bomber” wearing a long coat, a eponymous “mad bomber hat,” and carrying a black spherical or sticks of dynamite bomb, fuse sputtering down to ignition as he tries to trigger yet another war in order to destroy an existing government. 
          Today’s image is undergoing change.  The European/urban American, feet in the street, masked and wired to the grid anarchist seems to have an understanding that chaos is the heart of anarchy and is willing to become an anonymous foot soldier in the street theater of the generation.  Nothing makes one feel good about one’s effort to destroy “the globalists” and their financial empires that own the national governments like watching the post-riot videos on the evening news broadcasts while relaxing in a hot bath or shower, dining at a bistro, and enjoying the amplified sounds of the latest pop music, and while dancing the night away with thousands of others who might actually do more harm to the current system by spreading the current strain of influenza from town to town.
          But the newest breed of anarchy has its roots in the teavangelist political parties of the United States.  These are political reactionaries who blend a Taliban-like religious fundamentalism with a refusal to engage in political compromise, and the belief that they will be rewarded by history and by their political masters for blocking all attempts to continue to govern the U.S. as the majority of voters in the last two Presidential elections wish it to be governed.
          This American pseudo-anarchism is the paid product of legislators in the sub-rosa employ of the latest round of robber barons and financial manipulators who are convinced of their own invincibility due to immense financial holdings largely warehoused off U.S. shores to avoid even the most minimal of taxes.  The dirty work and local political posturing is provided by right-wing talk radio commentators who dispense daily doses of piety and pseudo-morality while engaging in a life style that precisely violates everything they rail against.
           There are no real anarchists around today’s cities.  Even the most radical offspring of Stalin’s party are far better off either here or back in the Rodina, to wish to bring down the current government and to compromise their access to social safety nets, public health agencies that assure safe food and water, and the other benefits of life in an industrial nation that we regard as necessary in order to live well. 
          The closest thing we in America have to real anarchists, are the teavangelists.  A real anarchist knows that if he is successful in bringing about political anarchy, with it will come social and cultural anarchy.  There will be no more social safety nets, no public schools, no universities to return to once one is done playing at changing the world. 
          What will come about, what we do not want to come about, is just what the NRA and the toy soldier militias have been prophesying.  There will be sufficient blockade of our current government that we no longer have a stable and workable government.  We’ll stand amazed as it crumbles around us.  The truly ironic aspect of the whole collapse will be that if it occurs, it will be brought about by the very people who have been hoarding guns, gold, food, and everything that they believe they will need when they are attacked by imaginary screaming hordes of socialists pouring out of the cities to escape the turmoil and anarchy that they have brought about.  The turmoil and crumbling society with no working financial system and no remaining food distribution system will be generated by the 2nd amendment nuts intent on owning one of every gun in manufacture, the “preppers ready to seal their families into underground bunkers for a decade, and the rest of the xenophobes, teavangelists waiting for Israel to crumble and usher in the 2nd coming.
          I hope they like beans and rice. 

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

8 January 2013 I’ll take “Early aircraft carrier crashes for $400, Alex

Cassi Creek:  Tonight is the Jeopardy on-lined audition; the first step in the selection process for Jeopardy contestants.  At 2000, this evening the Eastern Time zone will be teeming with thousands of hopeful men and women who think that they can become winning contestants on the long-running television game show.  That is, they can become winning contestants if they can meet the selection criteria.
          Up and down the Eastern United States, they will be anxiously staring at their computer monitor, hands poised over the keyboards, as a series of questions flashes too briefly in front of them while they try to think of the correct answer and input it into the appropriate response slot.  The dwell time between first look at the question and the sudden shift to a new question is brutally short.  It is intended to be brutal, so that it immediately puts the would-be contestants, me included, under steadily increasing stress. 
          The audition is like the actual game, kind to those with a wide range of trivial facts stored in some portion of their brains.  Hand eye coordination is important.  It does no good to recall the answer to “what is Avogadro’s number – to the 12th decimal place”, if you are the 2nd one to buzz in with the correct response.  Of course, being first to buzz in is of no benefit if the answer suddenly disappears from memory, or even worse, is incorrect. 
          All things being otherwise equal, there is an immense importance that the hopeful contestants are possessed of broad and easily accessed range of trivial facts.  Those tend to be the sorts that are only of benefit in just such an event as the Jeopardy audition and game.  Successful candidates and contestants will know everything imaginable about everything imaginable.
 “How far to the Moon? 
“How fast does light travel?
“How many salmon spawn in the Columbia River basin?
“What is the atomic weight of U-238?
“Who wrote Hayden’s unfinished symphony?
“Who won the NHL championship in 1999?”
          And the list continues just as do the categories.  The mix of categories is the crucial thing for me.  At least, it has been so in the past.  Parkinson’s disease has introduced a delay in working the keyboard that wasn’t there when I first began taking these on-line auditions.  The inability to move as rapidly with certainty and accuracy, then directing my hand to the next key without hesitation is as critical as ever.  But the mix of categories and the mix of questions within those categories is the primary problem to be overcome. 
          I have no interest in team athletic competitions.  Ask me about football, basketball, hockey, and I’m almost certainly lost.  I might, just might, know the answer if it is “Babe Ruth, Joe Dimaggio, Mickey Mantle, Stan Musial, Sandy Koufax, or Larry Bird.  Otherwise, I’ll draw a blank.  Likewise, the categories dealing with Opera, ballet, or popular music performers post 1973. 
          Tonight I will sit down at my notebook and log into the test website.  I’ll be as hopeful as the person holding a lottery ticket that has yet to be checked against the official results.  15 minutes later, I’ll be joking with Gloria about “the mix,” and shelving my hopes of becoming a contestant for yet another year. 
          Bear in mind, however, that lightening  does strike twice, that the glass combat boot just might fit your foot ( as it is most likely to small for mine), and it is possible to land a 20 pound salmon on a #22 fly and a two pound test leader if you are extremely skilled and extremely lucky. 
          If, by remarkable chance, I get up from the audition tonight with an incredibly high score and then appear on Jeopardy, I’ll be even more surprised than you.  I didn’t visit a cross roads at midnight, signed nothing in blood, and didn’t have a radio transceiver in my hearing aids.  It was just the mix. 
          I’ll have “obscure naval battles for $2000, Alex!”

Monday, January 7, 2013

7 January 2013 6 January 2013 Rockwood Ferry in concert

"You can't always eat what you want, 
But if there's pie sometimes,
You get what you need!

The skies cleared just enough to provide a sunset.  We are watching it from the living room of David Wiley’s  "Serenity Knoll.".  There is a double bass playing scales in back room as a band tunes up for a private, by invitation, .concert. 
At 1715 there are still people arriving... a contingent has hiked up to the pavilion David is building to use for dancing a and other functions.
Dinner is a potluck event.  David provided a beef stew.  The table was fleshed out with the usual suspect items.
There is one rug rat present.  Unfortunately, its parent parked it next to me, most likely the least kid friendly person at the gathering.  It is operating between whine and moderate manic.   It is fed and now occupying the choke point that divides the two halves of the room.  The better thing would have been to park it on the other side of the room.

1838  Rockwood Ferry to the stage.
Begin 7 January 2013 input:
Cassi Creek:
            The musical portion of the evening was pleasurable.  I lost the vocals in the instrumental output and the ambient sounds of the house and crowd.  The instrumentals seemed to incorporate tonal qualities of Native American music.  The violin did extra duty as a wing bone flute while the double bass provided percussion elements.  While there was instrumental give and take the level of improvisation was less than I had hoped to hear.  To what remains of my hearing, the attempts to open the instrumentals up and out resulted in more repetition than expansion. 
            Still, the band seemed eager to please, its audience and played with decent levels of energy and interaction as was suitable to the micro-venue. 
            David did a good job of arranging the event and both Gloria and I were pleased to be among those invited for the evening. 
Note on potlucks:  Growing up in the 1950s-60s and being a Boy Scout for many of those years, I’ve experienced many, many potluck dinners.  The nature of the table has changed markedly.  If the event was an outdoors event, there were normally hotdogs and hamburgers provided by the sponsoring organization and prepared by the older boys or the fathers present that day/night.  It was not uncommon to find baked beans offered by 25% of the families in attendance.  There were bowls and bags filled with chips of some type.  Three-bean salad often made an appearance.  There might have been a meatloaf or two.  Working mothers often, submitted dishes based upon canned vegetables and canned soup.  The quality of baked beans varied widely.  It was understood that the dish carried in to share was the same recipe that made it to the home table.  Some families simply poured “pork and beans” into a baking  dish.  Other than strips of under-done bacon atop a soupy liquid, no seasoning was apparent.  Other families made and brought actual baked beans with a thick, well-seasoned sauce and crisp strips of bacon.   Casseroles lined the table and, again, the canned soup base and canned vegetables varied in flavor and consistency.  It was not that hard to fill a plate with familiar food as many of us went immediately for our family offering.  /There were often jello dishes thick with carrots, peas, pineapple, cottage cheese and less interesting things.  Jello surfaced again in the dessert section along with fruit pies and fake whipped cream.  Proteins played a major role in any potluck. 
            Last night, the primary dish was a large pot of beef stew provided by the host.  Other than a small plate of sliced cheese and sausage; and a dish of fried chicken, proteins were not evident.  In evidence, rice, a mac and cheese dish with very little cheese, breads of various sorts, crudités, hummus, and baba ganush rounded out the table.  Desserts were present as sliced fruits, an apple pie, and a key lime pie.  Missing from the table, beans of any sort, hot dishes were absent – given the vegan nature of many of the attendees, I suppose we were lucky to find what we did.  Gloria found some salads and a piece of fried chicken.  I chased some macaroni around, hoping for cheese as well, and settled for bread, broccoli, and the cheese/sausage offering.  
            Potlucks have changed markedly since I first gazed at a long table and planned which dishes to avoid. 

Sunday, January 6, 2013

6 January 2013 Truckload of art burning neat the highway

          My introduction to “Truckload of Art” took place at an Austin Lounge Lizards performance in Sarasota Florida.  The group provided an unexpected mix of liberalism and Texas cowboy songs that sent us home eagerly clutching an album titled “Small Minds.” 
          The Austin Lounge Lizards would be a wonderful opener for Kinky Friedman.  An evening with both would provide side-splitting glimpses of truth not know in much of the nation’s states. 
austin lounge lizards stupid texas song
Cassi Creek:         Today is yet another overcast and rainy day.  The creek is dropping slowly.            We took delivery on a load of firewood, about half a cord, Friday evening.  The seller took the time to find and provide wood that is unusually short compared to the standard length sold locally.  The firebox in our stove is shorter than most by two inches.  When I had sufficient shoulder mobility to maneuver a chain saw properly that wasn’t much of a problem.  Now, I appreciate a vendor who is willing to provide a little extra service. 
          The coming week promises to be interesting in several ways.  Stay tuned – no film at 11.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

5 January 2013 You might think that they would have learned by now

Washington (CNN) -- If all the recent wrangling over the fiscal cliff has revealed anything, it's how tense and strained President Obama's relationship is with Republicans in Congress.
And Obama's relationship with Congress reached yet another low Thursday when House Speaker John Boehner confirmed to CNN that he has told House Republicans he will no longer negotiate legislative deals with the president.
And in an opinion piece on Thursday, Sen. John Cornyn of Texas faulted the president for all the fiscal brinksmanship since 2010. The new No. 2 Senate Republican also suggested that "[i]t may be necessary to partially shut down the government in order to secure the long-term fiscal well being of our country."

Cassi Creek:  the GOP tried a shutdown during the Clinton era.  They tried to whitewash the reasons for their action.  However, the real reason was that Then Speaker of the House Gingrich was displeased with his seat assignment on an AF-1 flight.  The outcome damaged the GOP’s standing among voters and cost the party its dominance in the House. 
          The 2011 debt ceiling clusterfuck was brought about by teavangelists and GOPers believing that they could win their ideology’s demands by threatening to sink the nation’s economy.  They failed to achieve their demands but did damage the economy and cause the United States financial status to be downgraded.  The world economy was also weakened by their petty temper tantrums.
          Now, in 2013 the stage is set for GOP/teavangelists to rewind and replay the 2011 debt ceiling fiasco.  The Congress has incurred debt and the GOP/teavangelists refuse to pay those debts.  They think that Obama will waffle again as in 2011. 
          The 2012 election was not, as Sen. Cornyn has stated, a mandate for austerity, massive spending cuts, and tax cuts for the wealthy.  If the voters had wanted that image of government, Romney would be working on a state of the union address. 
          The GOP seems unable to process the fact that Obama is in office for a 2nd term.  The teavangelists don’t care what Obama says or does; they plan to obstruct every action of his and anything that the GOP votes for that isn’t hard-core teavangelism. 
          So we are faced with elected representatives who intend to destroy the nation’s ability to function and who think that they have a mandate to destroy the global economy while simultaneously waging war on Afghanistan, Pakistan, North Korea, Venezuela, and Iran. 
          The latest round of gerrymandering is likely to yield numerical dominance in the House for the GOP.  The alliance between the old GOP and the various teavangelist conglomerates will eventually become less fixed; although how and when the dissolution manifests has yet to be seen.  The demands for ideological purity will cause and widen any future splits among the reactionary right-wingers.  We can only hope for a rapid, vicious, and highly venomous break up as personal greed interferes with the cooperation between the moneyed hard liners who wish to dictate the party line and the even more greedy financial backers who think that the world’s revenues belong to them.
          There is still sufficient stupidity among the teavangelists in Congress to cause them to cause a repeat of the financial meltdowns that took place in 2008.  Obviously, they have yet to learn that their financial owners who paid for their elections are not backing them merely to assure party line purity.