Friday, July 31, 2009

The Call of the Jitterbug Doll

I have added a new and very welcome link to my blog, having learned only moments ago that my friend and favorite model, Miss Amanda Lee, now has a blog of her own. Go check it out; a link is provided here, if you feel disinclined to scroll down the list to find it on your own. Amanda's pleasing visage and retro hairdos have often adorned this site, and I hope they will do so many more times in the future.

Just today, incidentally, one of my co-workers told me she had noticed that I haven't taken any new photos of Amanda in quite some time. Truth be told, in the past three weeks I have only added one new image of any kind to my Flickr stream, and that one was taken about six weeks ago. So perhaps my co-worker is right, and I need a fresh dose of inspiration, which Amanda always manages to give me whenever she is around.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

The top 10 ways to destroy the earth

During an idle moment this morning, I came across this brief summary of the ten best ways to destroy Planet Earth. Notwthstanding the inherently grim nature of the subject-matter, I found the article to be quite entertaining, and so recommend it to one and all. This, in my view, would make very good material for a James Bond movie, or perhaps a Superman comic book in which Lex Luthor makes a special appearance.

My only concern about sharing this here is the possibility that Kim Jong-il, or perhaps the top muckety-mucks of some terrorist organization, might be following my blog, unbeknown to me. If that is indeed the case, and if they or any other similarly-disposed individuals happen to read this, I encourage them to go look at some of my other posts instead, preferably the ones about the wonders of ballroom dancing. I don't want them to get any bad ideas; besides, in my judgment, dancing could cure a host of the world's ills, as well as make these ten scenarios a good deal more bearable if things ever do get to that point.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Mr. Obama's non-issue

One of my more embarrassing confessions is that, as a college freshman in 1972, I attended several John Birch Society meetings and actually gave serious thought to joining the organization. But in the end, reason prevailed, and I finally decided that I simply could not accept the Birchers' simplistic notion that most of the world's problems were the direct or indirect results of the decades-long machinations of a sinister cabal of international bankers and their lackeys, all of them pulling strings behind the scenes and marching in lockstep. Today I am highly skeptical of nearly all conspiracy theories, although I will never cease to marvel at the sheer foolishness that underlies so many of them, or the tenacity and persistence of their adherents. (As an aside, I once considered posting my "discovery" that with computer enhancement, accompanied by some hocus-pocus such as clicking one's heels together three times a la Dorothy, one can clearly see O. J. Simpson, armed with a rifle, in frames 77 though 125 of the Zapruder film; but then I realized that if I did this, some would take the idea seriously and run away with it. Soon the Web would be abuzz with rumors that O. J. had been complicit in the JFK assassination, and I didn't want to be responsible for that. O. J. is guilty as hell of enough violent felonies as it is, but even he deserves something better than to be the central focus of this ridiculous scenario.)

There are many valid criticisms one can make of President Obama, and lately more reasons to do so have been sprouting up on all sides as he sails through turbulent waters and his approval ratings slip. But one all-too-frequently-heard complaint about him has never concerned me at all: the persistent rumor that Mr. Obama is foreign-born, and thus constitutionally ineligible to be President in the first place. I have never seen or heard any valid reason to dispute his claim to having been born in Honolulu on August 4, 1961; moreover, even if this were not true, his mother was indisputably a U. S. citizen throughout her life, which by law would automatically confer citizenship on her son as well. (For instance, George Romney, who for a time was the frontrunner for the 1968 Republican Presidential nomination, was born in Mexico to American parents; and although his campaign eventually fizzled for other reasons, his citizenship was apparently never much of an issue at all, even among the fringe types.)

Today I discovered this article while checking the day's news. I, of course, am not among those needing to be convinced, but if I were, these findings would be enough to satisfy me that the issue could be forever laid to rest. Barack Obama may turn out to be a great President or a disaster, or perhaps something in between, but he at least meets the constitutional requirements for being the nation's Chief Executive. All of us -- conspiracy theorists included -- need to focus on the real issues of our time, rather than phony ones such as this.