Open Thread………………………………………………Wednesday, September 3

September 3rd, 2014 62 comments

queen anneQueen Anne’s Lace in all its simple elegance fills the Virginia landscape in mid-summer and fall.  Queen Anne’s Lace is actually a relative of the lowly carrot.  In fact, you can smell carrot when you pick this plant which grows wild pretty much everywhere.

When I was a kid, I used to stick a bloom or two in ink or food coloring to dye the lace.  I have long forgotten all the plant part names but I think I did learn a little something about how nutrients travel in the plant world by doing this simply kid trick.

Queen Anne’s Lace has other companions that hang out this time of year.  Black Eyed Susans are one such road-side wild flower.  What are other Virginia favorites?

Categories: General Tags:

The Roosevelts: stark reminder of better times?

September 22nd, 2014 5 comments

Excerpt from Ken Burns’ ‘The Roosevelts’ Reveals Everything Wrong With Our Current Political Class’  by Joseph Palermo

Ken Burns’ seven-part PBS series on the lives of Theodore, Franklin, and Eleanor Roosevelt, The Roosevelts: An Intimate History, is a remarkable achievement. Burns sheds a poignant new light on the personal and public lives of three monumental figures in 20th Century American history. And in doing so, he illustrates the relative rottenness of the hacks, partisans, and plutocrats who make up the political class that rules America today.

By exploring the lives and times of TR, FDR, and ER Burns shows that in our not-so-distant past the governing institutions of this country were actually responsive to the needs and desires of working-class Americans. This superb and moving portrait is a perfect fit for our times. The utter failure of our current “leaders” is glaring by comparison.

Yes, TR was a warmonger, and FDR signed the order that imprisoned innocent Japanese Americans. There are long lists of both presidents’ failures. But we shouldn’t let those flaws bury the fact that both TR and FDR were not afraid to stand up to big corporations and Wall Street if they viewed their actions as damaging to the country. That alone is probably the biggest difference between those leaders of the early decades of the 20th Century and today.

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Women and influence

September 21st, 2014 2 comments


This is going to be a short one.  Who do you feel is the most influential woman of the 20th century and why?  Is there a runner up?


Categories: General, Women's Issues Tags:

Pat Robertson blames Mikey (one little Jewish radical)!

September 20th, 2014 5 comments

The Air Force announced on Thursday that the words “so help me God” were an optional part of the oath after an atheist airman crossed out the words on his reenlistment paperwork. Military officials had initially refused to accept the paperwork, but Department of Defense General Counsel eventually ruled that the words could be omitted.

Although the American Humanist Association had represented the airman, Robertson on Thursday blamed Military Religious Freedom Foundation President Mikey Weinstein for the movement against religion in the armed services.

“There’s a left-wing radical named Mikey Weinstein who has got a group about people against religion or whatever he calls it, and he has just terrorized the armed forces,” Robertson opined. “You think you’re supposed to be tough, you’re supposed to defend us, and you got one little Jewish radical who is scaring the pants off of you.”
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Categories: Military, Religion Tags:

Reflections on the McDonnells

September 19th, 2014 11 comments

The McDonnell trial is over.  They were both found guilty on a majority of the counts.  Both could easily go to prison.  But is prison the best placement for the McDonnells?

I have gone soft.  I admit it.  However, let’s review a few points.  The McDonnells did not break any Virginia laws.  Secondly, I am not sure quid pro quo was clearly established.

For certain the McDonnells were greed, stupid and unethical.  However, there really aren’t laws against those negative behaviors.  Yes, they should have known better and clearly he can’t pile it all on his somewhat silly adolescent-like almost senior citizen wife.

We do have to ask ourselves though, is prison the smartest place for either of them? They just don’t seem like prison material to me.  We also need to dispel the myths that there are “country-club” prisons.  There really is no such thing.  Even federal prisons are filled with dangerous gangsters and drug dealers, for heaven’s sake.

Prisons cost money.  Prison is a billion dollar industry as it is.  Why add to the burden with people who have already been broken.  How about 1500 hours of community service in a community health center for the poor?  I would even like to see teaching English in some school in the low rent district in Richmond for a year–something that humbles, not destroys.  (although there are probably people out there who might disagree about destroys.)

I don’t want to see the McDonnells go to prison.  I want to see Virginia make some laws that deal with ethics and how people are supposed to act while in public office.  Being elected to public office is not a free pass of entitlement.  Virginia lawmakers need to learn this lesson fast.

Disclaimer:  I did not like 95% of Governor McDonnell’s decision while he was in office.  I am certainly not a fan.  I just don’t feel they should go to prison.

Categories: General, Virginia Tags:

Wally Covington appointed a general district court judge

September 18th, 2014 No comments

The Virginia General Assembly on Thursday appointed Brentsville District Supervisor Wally Covington a district judge, paving the way for a special election for his seat on the Prince William County Board of Supervisors. Covington has served three terms on the board and is currently vice chairman. He was chosen Friday to fill a vacancy in Prince William General District Court, a position that requires him to resign from his elected office. Two Republicans, Jeanine Lawson and Scott Jacobs, plan to run for the vacant seat in a special election that will be sometime this winter. There won’t be a Democratic contender for the seat. On Oct. 1, the Prince William Republican Committee will hold a mass meeting to nominate one of the two candidates to run in the special election. The meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. at Patriot High School.

Congratulations to Supervisor Covington.   Most of us knew that he wanted this position for a long time.  Hopefully he will find the job very rewarding. Now the fun will begin as the two Republican candidates jockey for the vacated supervisors position.  The decision to chose the candidate at a mass meeting pretty much decided the outcome of this election.   Plan for the deck to be stacked. Brentsville District will certainly be rocking this fall.  I am not a Republican and I don’t live in Brentsville District.  We will be watching from a distance. The civility of this race will be remembered.

Categories: PWC Politics Tags:

Hispanic Bar Association Opposes Covington Judicial Appointment

September 17th, 2014 12 comments


The Hispanic Bar Association of Virginia is opposing a Manassas lawyer nominated for a general district judgeship.

The HBA-VA says W.S. “Wally” Covington III – a Prince William County supervisor – has indicated a bias against immigrants, particularly Latinos.

The group has written to Del. Luke E. Torian, D-Dumfries, opposing Covington’s bid for the judgeship vacated by the retirement of Judge Peter W. Steketee this year.

HBA-VA president Manuel E. Leiva said the effort may be futile, since Torian is a Democrat and Covington reportedly has the support of Republican legislators in the area. Republicans control both houses of the legislature.

Leiva said his group was disappointed that seemingly better qualified candidates who interviewed with bar groups were passed over in favor of Covington. “I just think it’s a slap,” he said.


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The Crusades boss, the crusades!

September 16th, 2014 4 comments

Mike Huckabee closed out his remarks at last night’s “Star Spangled Sunday” event by recounting how, many years ago, he used to watch Arkansas Razorbacks basketball games when they were re-broadcast late at night, especially when he already knew that they had won the game when it was played live earlier in the day because, no matter what the score was at any point, he knew that his team would ultimately win.

Huckabee urged those in attendance to apply this same lesson in response to the threat from radical Islam, saying that they should read the Bible in order to realize that the Christians will defeat the Muslims in the end

The sons of Ishmael? Come on, Huckabee, these aren’t the crusades.

I actually hope that most of the Muslims agree with us and want to get rid of terrorists who insist that only one brand of Islam is practiced. Why would he try to pit the entire Islamic world against Christians!! That really isn’t what this is about.

First he throws down the gauntlet by dividing us clearly into Christians vs Muslim. Then he declares us the victors. Next thing he will be wondering why there are religious wars. What a dumb ass.


Categories: General Tags:

Adrian Peterson: Was it just a “good switching?”

September 15th, 2014 50 comments

Was the Adrian Peterson case overkill? Minnesota Viking Peterson was arrested for supposedly beating his 4 year old kid with a tree branch.  Let’s walk this one back a bit.  Could some of these charges be hyperbole?

The classic switching is well known to many kids and adults. Many kids even had to go select their own switch.  Could a switch be also called a “tree branch?”  Of course.  Forsythia probably makes the best switches, especially if you let the shrub grow freely.

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Categories: General Tags:

Holy Batman! Border Vigilantes Confront Scientists

September 14th, 2014 47 comments

A frequent message among anti-immigrant activists is that the federal government is refusing to do its job in guarding the border, and therefore civilians should consider joining border patrol militias to stop the purported massive flood of immigrants, sometimes with tragic results. Calls to join such vigilante groups only increased with the rise of unaccompanied minors fleeing drug violence in Central America, even though the minors were actually seeking out border patrol officers.


This week, one of these armed groups ambushed a group of geologists who were “counting bats in a local cave” for a wildlife survey. One of the researchers told the Huffington Post, “We didn’t know what they were doing. We started hiding behind rocks. We’re not doing what they’re saying, and they’re acting kind of jumpy. … We had them yelling at us with spotlights, acting like they have some kind of authority.” Of course, that led actual Border Patrol officers to come to the scene of the (non)crime…taking time away from their, well, actual job that they are supposedly not doing -

Categories: General Tags:

“If We Keep Chickifying This Game We’re Going To Ruin It”

September 14th, 2014 43 comments

Limbaugh is such an ass he is funny.  “Chickifying” football.  What a hoot.

I guess according to Rush, real women should like getting the crap beaten out of them.  Yea boy!

I can’t even get pissed off at him any longer.  This is humor at its very sickest.

Nah, there is NO war on women.  Wimmins need to learn to take it or turn off the TV.

Categories: Humor & Satire, Women's Issues Tags: