Framing the Dialogue

Archive for June, 2011

Stockholm Syndrome

I was recently watching one of my favorite shows, Always Sunny In Philadelphia. In one episode the main characters were held hostage by some local bullies and one of the hostages talked about Stockholm Syndrome and even began to exhibit symptoms. Stockholm Syndrome is where hostages who have been held for a long time begin to share the values and beliefs of those who are holding them captive. I have a very healthy disrespect for the main-stream media as water-carriers for the Democrats and liberal causes, but I have begun to feel sorry for them. I do believe that they may actually have Stockholm Syndrome.

Let The Sunshine In, Let The Sunshine In

PennLive ran a story this week with the following headline:

The sun shines on taxpayers: Measuring solar performance

You would expect a story with this headline to contain some good news for taxpayers and perhaps it does, but I am too jaded by the desire, no compulsion to give away my hard earned money to others. The story is about a solar project completed by the Lycoming County School District.

“The project is expected to reduce the district’s annual electricity use by 700,000 kilowatt-hours and act as a hedge against future escalation of the cost of electricity.”

Update 3 – A Rough Pitch

I had not planned for this to be a series, but somehow this story, like the Pirates themselves, just won’t go away. First of all congratulations to the Pirates for a great series against the powerful Boston Red Sox as they won two out of three games, taking the series. They are now one game over 0.500 after playing 77 games which is by far their best showing in years. There are actually 15 teams with worse winning percentages than the Pirates. I cannot say that Pittsburgh has caught Pirate fever, but even some local broadcasters have begun speaking about them in more positive terms. After 18 losing seasons in a row we are getting excited, somewhat, to have a “winning” team this late in the season. Oh and the Pirates are only four games back from the division leading Milwaukee.

Buried Secrets

The latest Nick Heller thriller is another winner by author Joseph Finder. Buried Secrets brings Heller into the world of the super rich as he tries to rescue the daughter of a close friend and his mother’s former employer.  Joseph Finder has become one of my favorite thriller authors and his latest novel does not disappoint.  I love to find a novel that almost forces me to drop everything and read and read and read. 

A Princess of Landover

It had probably been literally decades since I have read, actually devoured, Terry Brooks’ books.  I was really into the fantasy world books back then.  I looked with anticipation when I saw A Princess of Landover on the shelf in Barnes & Noble.  Perhaps I have grown up, but this book about magical creatures did not have any magic for me.  While the novel was interesting it lacked the drama and intrigue that I remembered from earlier books by the author. 

A Tale of Two Tales

What would happen to a journalist who used information in a story that was false?  You would hope that reporter would first of all be excoriated by the rest of the media, forced to apologize to the harmed/defamed/slandered party, be subject to a huge lawsuit by the injured party, lose all credibility, and be fired.  Yes that is what should happen.  It wasn’t that long ago that Dan Rather used fake military documents to try to take down a sitting president.  In his arrogance, Rather has stuck by his “story” even though the documents were proven to be forged.  Rather was forced to “retire” and suffers the distinction of being a fraud which for a narcissist has to be a pretty severe punishment.  His opinion will always be tainted by that partisan scandal by a supposed neutral journalist.

News Briefs – Volume XXVII – The Supremes

News briefs are a collection of interesting news stories.  This edition is all about SCOTUS…

If you think that the next presidential election is only about Obamacare and other Obama policies, please notice the narrow victories in the United States Supreme Court for centrist issues.  The next judge could be a crucial swing vote.

Him Her Him Again The End of Him

Written by former Saturday Night Live writer Patricia Marx and I bought and read the book in spite of that and the fact that Steve Martin was quoted on the front. Perhaps I am getting old and impatient, but the I am still waiting for the “fiercely funny” or “dark hilarity” or “wildly funny” promised by the quotes on the book cover. I guess if you live in a big city full of neurotics then this would constitute funny. I don’t find Sex and the City particularly humorous either. There is too much neurosis going on. The novel Him Her Him Again The End of Him was entertaining and I finished it, but was struck more by what others think is funny.  As if being dysfunctional, dependent on your parents (who you seem to despise), and neurotic constitute the natural state. I had a hard time getting past the crap to understand the main character. I guess I am just not sophisticated enough.

Landscaping Through Life

St. John's Wort on the left - Crown Vetch on the right

A few years ago my in-laws built a new cabin on Deep Creek Lake.  This would be the third cabin dating back to when the lake was first formed to generate hydro-power.  There is a small slope between their lower driveway and the lawn that leads to the lakefront.  It never really had any remarkable landscaping and was mostly weeds.  After construction I took the initiative to research, buy, and plant this area.  They have somewhat sandy soil that doesn’t get much sun.

Separated At Birth – Selma Bouvier/Debbie Wasserman-Schultz

Selma Bouvier:  Selma Bouvier is the raspy-voiced character on the long-running Simpsons animated television series.  Selma suffered and unfortunate bottle rocket accident and lost both her sense of taste and smell.  Selma’s favorite film actor was reportedly Troy McClure, to whom she was briefly married before discovering it was just a publicity stunt by McClure.  She was willing to live a sham for a while, but broke it off when she realized she couldn’t bring a child into a loveless marriage.  Selma inherited her deceased aunt’s iguana, Jub-Jub, instead of her mother, Jacqueline, due to Jacqueline’s apparent dislike of Jub-Jub.  Unlike her sister, Patty, Selma has shown brief moments of sympathy for Homer, primarily due to his unwavering loyalty to his family.  However, these instances are still very few and far between.  The Simpson’s creators fortunately only use her character infrequently so she doesn’t get on our nerves.  BTW what’s up with the hair?