From Pine View Farm

Personal Musings category archive

The American Experiment, 21st Century Version 0

Def: An effort to determine which can do more damage: a President who has no core values or a political party whose core value is that there is no such thing as the common good.

(NYT link via Political Prof after I did the original draft of this post.

The Comeyuppance 0

In yesterday’s performance of the frog and the scorpion, who knew that James Comey would end up playing the frog?

Certainly not James Comey, for he thought that he had served his masters well.

I am no fan of James Comey, as he grossly violated the public trust and may have swung the election. Nevertheless, I am confident that whomever The Donald selects to replace him will make him look like Prunella Purity.

And, make no mistake, it’s the racism that has brought us here. I’m not going to link it up now because it’s late as I write this, but a look at my posts in this category will enable you to catch my meaning, to get my drift.

Pay for Performance 0

Swiss federal railways is launching a new initiative to ensure the train doors always end up in the same location on the platform when a train pulls into a station, according to 20 Minuten.


And as a reward for complying, drivers will receive chocolate as a gift in return, he added.

I remember that, early in my time at Amtrak when I worked in the Adequacy of Service Bureau Complaint Department, commuter stations in the Northeast Corridor had signs posted for trains of different lengths to make it easier for engineers to stop their trains in the same places on their runs.

Some commuters would stand where they expected the doors to be. If the doors weren’t exactly where they expected them to be, they would write complaint letters, which I had to answer.

Those commuters used the Princeton Junction, New Jersey, station.

One of my coworkers had worked with the Long Island Railroad before he came to Amtrak. He could remember complaints from those same passengers when they lived on Long Island, before they moved to central Jersey.

That’s when I learned that a self-centered arrogant sense of entitlement could be migratory.


If you want a quick course in Abnormal Psych, work in a complaint department. After that, nothing that people do will surprise you.

Amuse you, disgust you, repulse you, sicken you maybe, but not surprise you.

Stray Thought, Corporate Conquest Dept. 0

Americans are demonstrating that they will willingly submit to corporate Big Brothers if it means they can turn on their coffee pots with a voice command before they get to their kitchens.

The Last Resort 0

What’s with all these people calling on the phone “because you’ve recently stayed at one of our resorts” when I haven’t stayed at a resort in this century? Many many busienss-persons’ hotels, yes, but no resorts.


Sometimes the Victim Deserves the Blame 0

Regardless of whatever machinations the Russians may have machinated to help Donald Trump win the Presidency, it was Americans who voted for him.

“An Armed Society Is a Polite Society” 0

Ever notice how a “child” becomes a “juvenile,” a “little boy” becomes a “male,” and a “little girl” becomes a “female,” once he or she is introduced to politeness (emphasis added)?

The Fountain Police Department responded to the 700 block of Progress Drive in Fountain, to investigate an accidental shooting. The call came in at 5:00 p.m. Sunday.

The victim is an approximately 3 to 4-year-old female, who suffered a wound to the head. She is being treated at Memorial Hospital and undergoing surgery.

Stray Thought 0

There is bittersweet pleasure (but no comfort) in watching “conservative” opinion writers, who have made careers of justifying Republicans and Republicanism, express dismay at what they have helped create.

For example. And example.

And that’s just from this morning’s casual reading . . . .

Stray Thought 0

If I never have another January like this one, it will still be one too many.

Dialectic 0

Has anyone else noticed that today’s Republican Party’s strategy for saving the “American Dream” (whatever that is) is to deny it to as many persons as possible?


When only one person has access to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, maximum dream shall have been obtained.

Stray Thought 0

I was tempted not to do my usual Christmas posts, but then I realized that, if there is true spirit of Christmas that transcends sect and creed, it is this:

Keep the faith. baby, even especially in the darkness.

Decorated 0

I am finding it difficult to have much Christmas spirit in the light of current events (more about that on Christmas Day), but I’ve still decorated, because life goes on and the good fight never ends.* Here’s my Slackware desktop (Fluxbox with XMMS, GKrellM, and xsnow).

Computer with Christmas wallapaper.

Click for a larger image.

Take a time out and enjoy your Christmas, then gird your grid for the big one, because it’s happening now.


*Those who think that the fight ever ends don’t understand how evil works. Evil never gives up and always tries again. Unlike virtue, evil is tireless.

Stray Question 1

Whatever happened to “impressionists” (I mean the comedians, not the painters; I know what happened to the painters–they left their impressions)?

Rich Little doing Donald Trump–what a long strange trip that would have been.

Stray Thought 0

Donald Trump seems to be acting as if winning the Electoral College tally in the recent popular vote is akin to a successful hostile corporate takeover.

Framing 0

Notice how, when Not White people do it, it’s “heroin” and when white people do it, it’s “opioids”?

You’ve Heard of White Flight? Learn about White Fright. 0

Badtux tells a story.

Think of the television shows you see. How often are black and brown persons depicted as gangsters, tattooed gang members, terrorists, druggies, and convicts? How seldom are they normal working folks trying to get along?

Growing up as a Southern Boy, I knew many black folks–not well, mind you, but at least I knew them–who worked hard and lived clean.

When my mother went to the hospital to give birth to my brother, a black lady came to look after me. When my father needed a new septic tank dug, a black man helped him dig it. My first playmate was a little black boy who lived on a corner of the farm.

I was too young to know prejudice and so was he. Then we got old enough to go to segregated schools, and we both learned it.

Had I grown up in some all-white wasteland, the one Badtux alludes to, I wouldn’t know better and might believe what I see on my television. I know better, but many don’t.

I once read an interview with a black actor, I can’t remember who I wish I could, who said that, when a black or brown man comes to Hollywood, he quickly realizes that his first roles will be as thugs and gangsters. Mark you, this isn’t an indictment of television and movies. Hollywood is a mirror.

A deeply racist society is the cause. This doesn’t mean that every white American is overtly racist, though many are, as the news shows more and more. It does mean that racism is baked into the system from education to housing to law enforcement to name an institution.

If you cannot accept that the United States of America is a deeply racist society, for all the “diversity” you might see in commercials, you do not accept reality and will never understand Trumpery or today’s Republican Party.

Stray Thought 0

Experiments sometimes fail, even noble ones.

Stray Thought 0

Remember, the “Hillary Clinton scamdals” are 99% Fox News lies and one per cent nobody’s perfect.

Football uber Alles 0

Bob Molinaro, sportswriter extraordinaire:

Futurewatch: To satisfy its TV partners, the Big Ten will play Friday night football games starting next season. On a positive note, Michigan and Penn State have declared that they want no part of it. Presumably, they can reject the new TV plan because big-time programs are entitled to throw their weight around. In this case, more power to them. Weeknight games create logistical nightmares for fans; Friday games impact high school football. College football at its best is an all-day Saturday affair. Leave weeknight games to the lesser conferences and needier programs.

I am sick of football. I am no longer fascinated by large men running into each other.

My local rag covers high school games the way it used to cover college games, college games the way it used to cover the pros, and the pros like it’s the only game in town. Honest to Pete, during the wind-up of the regular baseball season when nary a football game had yet been played, stories about what might happen were a football game to be played overwhelmed the coverage of actual other games that had been played.

Full Disclosure:

When I was in high school, I was the statistician for my high school football team. After each home game, I would call my local rag, that same local rag, with the results of the game. I know what the coverage was like. I was there.

I Have High Blood Pressure 0

I skipped the debate and watched an episode of Midsomer Murders. It was coherent, well-written, logical (if a bit outre), and well-performed.

I’ll read about the debate tomorrow, after I take my blood pressure medicine.