My two favorite media people


Have you ever watched the Tree House guy on the Animal planet channel?  If not, your life is incomplete!  There is not a more delightful, wacky and charming real person on TV.  Pete, the originator of the Tree House show travels around the country building the most creative and beautiful tree houses you could imagine. It is hard to put into words the feeling that he invokes from his viewers and customers.  He is a naturalist, an environmentalist, a humanist and an amazing designer.  In the show, after he finds the trees “that talk to him”, he sits down for an hour and creates the most incredible tree houses you can imagine.  He brings his crew in and in a relatively short period of time they recreate dreams for an awaiting customer.  No doubt most of these creations are not in reach of us poorer folks but the emotion that he creates in his art is infectious!

Pete being Pete

On the other side of my two favorite media people is, believe it or not, Bill Maher.  Many people do not have access to Bill because he is on HBO, and that costs more money to watch.  Others do not watch him because of his sometimes foul language and irreverent behavior or disdain for religion, but I watch him because his guest are very intelligent people from all sides of the issues and he conducts very informative and honest interviews.  The reason he is on HBO and not one of the major networks is because of this very fact; he speaks the truth!  He was fired by ABC because he made comments about the 9/11 attack that offended some people.  To paraphrase, he said the terrorists were very bad people but he could not say they were cowards since they gave their lives for their cause.  Every week Bill comes on and says the things that no one else will say.  He says things that many of us think but are afraid to admit to, let alone say out loud.  Bill has become the conscience of our culture, sitting in the back of the room reminding us who we are and what is real and what is unreal.

Bill with Steve Bannon

In many ways Pete and Bill have the same goals in mind; they each want us to enjoy our lives and open our eyes to the beauty that is in this world.  They want us to see what is possible if we are capable of dreaming of a better world. Pete, with the beauty of nature and the creativity he exudes, and Bill with his words on what we need to change to make this a better place for all of us to live peacefully, are both national treasures.  Hats off to both these guys!


We are slowly being boiled…ribbet

Do you remember the frog story? If you placed a frog in water and slowly raised the temperature of the water, the frog would stay in the pan and eventually be cooked.  In a similar vein, no one mentions in the frog story that if you say dumb things to people for a long enough time, they may in time become dumb!  I do believe we are in this situation now!  We are being boiled in stupidity!  The outlandish tweets and statements that I hear every day are killing my brain.  Just yesterday I received one of those hate Obama posts that made some statements that I knew were false.  I tracked down the real Obama speech and listened carefully to it and there were his words, which were cut and pasted to create an entirely opposite statement than what the President said.  Who does this stuff?  I am sure the dems have done some of this stuff as well, but the total reversal of what Obama said was created in the video.  I wonder if it is the Russians or just crazy people in the states?  Who ever it is, it is creating an environment of total distrust and misinformation! Like the frog, we can not survive as a country with this type of pervasive distrust boiling in every part of our lives.  I do believe that this is in fact the Russians, and they have taken advantage of our first amendment, the freedom of speech, and inundated us with barrages of lies and twisted facts.  This leaves us, the American citizens, unable to determine what is true and what is false.

Take Hillary for example, she has been involved in many amazing programs for the American people, including the CHIP program, (Children’s Health Insurance Program), and the Violence Against Women Act , but many people in this country believe she is an evil villain. Her worst crime, if you consider it a crime, according to her detractors, is sticking with her husband.  The man has some deep emotional issues stemming from a crazy childhood which led him to do some not-so-nice things, but many people believe he was one of the premier presidents in our history and Hillary stuck with him despite his flaws.  I thought this is what the religious right believed in.  I think there were some folks in the republican party and maybe even the Russians who feared Hillary would become president and spent the better part of a decade destroying her image.  Despite several investigations on Benghazi and the email scandal, nothing was found that warranted any legal actions against her. It is almost as if they had future information that Hillary would be president and enacted a tsunami of attacks on her accomplishments and character to change the future.

Another amazingly stupid belief is that the Russians did not interfere with our elections! The only thing I can come up with in response to this is; TAKE YOU HEAD OUT OF THE SAND! THEY DON’T LIKE US!  THEY WANT US TO DIE!  THEY HATE CAPITALISM!  THEY ARE SET ON DESTROYING OUR COUNTRY!  Every protective agency in our government has confirmed that the Russians interfered with our elections.  There is a good chance that they actually affected the election but that will be hard to prove!  What is going on here?  Have we all lost our minds?  This has happened in many societies in the past but never did the opponent have the power of our modern technology!  First, TV was used to change the face of America with stereotypes and advertisements and then Facebook, Google and the rest of the mega-corporations came along and  screwed with our brains in ways no one even thought of 20 years ago. Tack onto this our addiction to phones and our infinite access to everything at every minute of our lives, and I see a breakdown in our future.  For example, if you bought a car, took it to the interstate, stomped on the gas and held it there, in what would seem like a short time, the engine will either die with a whimper or explode under the hood.  Folks, the pedal is to the metal and the engine is starting to strain.  If we do not let off real soon, our engine will blow up! Of course there is the other option and we will just wither away like most countries have done in the past, but they did not have the communication technology that we do, so this may be a different game…Hold on…We will see…

There is a new addictive drug in our midst

In a society burdened with a variety of addictions, from alcohol, nicotine, sugar, TV, violence and an assortment of illegal as well as legal drugs, it is hard to imagine a new addition to this list, but there is, TRUMP! Over the last year and a half the airways have been assaulted by a form of reality TV unlike anything that we have seen before. We, the population of the USA, and maybe a large part of the world have become addicted to the daily and sometimes hourly updates of this saga. I find myself waking in the morning in need of a quick jolt of this drug by turning on the TV and soaking up the latest insanity. Many people used to rise and drink their coffee or have a cigarette, but today, a large group of us quickly turn on the TV to get a needed fix. Not only has the public become addicted to this new drug, the media, as well has become enamored by this shiny stone. If I were to guess, I would say that discussion of this news mania encompasses as much as 75% of all TV news, and some of the more political channels must be approaching 100%!
The discussion, depending on which channel you watch, is designed to sway you in a certain political direction. I do admit that I lean in what is a more liberal slant, but that is not the intent of this article. News in the past was designed to inform us so that we could make our own decisions based on facts and information.  But now, we are inundated with so much information, which in many cases is untrue, and when it is seems true, it is hard to determine if it is true. We have a plethora of fact checking sources, but in some cases these sites are corrupt as well! This new drug is literally taking over our world by causing the brain to create opiate like endorphins every time you hear new information and this is a major addiction problem!  Not only has this new drug become a staple in our lives, it has created an atmosphere of distrust of a magnitude unlike anything we have experienced as a nation. Like all addictive drugs it will take time and resources to heal from this epidemic but, hopefully we will.
In the mean time we must begin to wean ourselves from this drug. Many folks I have talked to have gone cold turkey by refusing to watch any news. This may not be a good idea since you will no longer be exposed to any information and we all know that information is valuable in our society. I think the best way to withdraw is to find a news source that you can determine is fact oriented and presents the truth without any political bias. This may be difficult and I dare not advise you on this but there are sources out there that do attempt to distribute the news in a fair and unbiased way. I could go on and on but I must get down to the TV and get my morning fix…bye.


What does Pro-choice mean?

As a teacher I spent many hours answering questions about abortion from my students.  Most students were fully convinced of one side of the debate, a position which was predictably based on their parents’ or their church’s views. Many were convinced that I was a rabid pro-abortionist, mainly because of my rather liberal point of view in other areas.  If I were to classify my thinking, I would consider myself a Social Libertarian.  You might ask, what in the hell is that?  Put succinctly, I cherish my individual rights but see the need of a society as complex as ours, with its many moving parts, to be regulated by a central government.  Among these critical needs would be: the military, social security, highway system and most importantly health care!  After all, if you are not well, none of these other things matter.

So with that said, let’s move on to the topic at hand.  Abortion is, by any measurement, a complex issue with rigid points of view on both sides.  The extreme right feels  that even when a mother’s life is in danger or a woman has become pregnant through rape, abortions should be illegal.  This ranges all the way to the far left, who believe that an abortion should be readily available with few restrictions. There is little chance that the two extreme groups are ever going to come to a compromise.

So let us take a step back and look at the things we know:

  1. If we do not curb the increasing population of humans, life on earth as we know it will cease.
  2.  Starting 18 years after Roe v Wade was passed by the Supreme Court in 1973, major crimes have dropped every year,
  3. I think a women should have the right to determine if she wants to have a child.
  4. Children should not have children.
  5. Many unwanted children become wards of the state.
  6. Throughout history attitudes about abortion have changed based on the size of the population and economic security.
  7. The economic drain on our society from neglected children is growing rapidly.
  8. Children of reluctant parents are sometimes born with severe medical and social problems due to poor parental skills and lack of medical care.
  9. Abortions preformed in unsafe environments by untrained individuals are not a favorable direction in a modern society and will result in the deaths of many women.

The first and most important fact to consider is that, NO ONE WANTS AN ABORTION! I can’t imagine that one wakes up in the morning excited that she is going to have an abortion that day. This includes all liberals, conservatives and everyone in-between.  Abortions are not anyone’s first choice but in some cases may offer a way out of a extremely harrowing and difficult situation.  For example, were a women to become pregnant by rape, how in the world would she be expected to be sanguine about birthing that child.  Why would she want to commit to raising this child for 18 years?  She may love children in general and be open to conceive a child but I feel pretty certain she would undoubtedly prefer to have a child based on love, not the violent act of rape!  This is one of those areas where the adage, ‘Take a walk in my shoes’, comes to mind.

More than a few women experience medical complications during pregnancy and childbirth.  In this case, a difficult decision would need to be made weighing the mother’s life against the fetus’s life.  I do believe, and feel that this is a consensus opinion: a mother’s life has priority over the fetus.  I can only imagine the difficulty in making such a decision.  There would be several doctors, the mother, clergy, administrators and members of the family involved!  I do not think that any of us who have not been confronted with this dilemma can imagine the stress and pain involved in a decision of this magnitude.

By far the most difficult issues we must consider are the unwanted child of a young girl, of a drug addict or genetically challenged parents.  In nature this is not a problem; if an animal is unable to survive, mother nature removes it from the gene pool.  In our world we have circumvented nature with our modern medical advances.  Many of you who are reading this would not be alive today if not for the marvels of modern medicine.  Again, we are faced with a difficult decision.  When a severely challenged child is born, the effect ripples through a family, not only emotionally but financially with little support from the medical community or the government.  Many families have been financially destroyed by the birth of a challenged child.  In a world where many of us are denied adequate basic health care, it is hard to financially justify bringing a profoundly challenged child into the world who could generate medical bills that could run into the millions, while at the same time, others have little to no health care.

As you may now see, abortion is very complicated.  I believe the decision should be made by the woman and persons intimately involved and not legislated by government.  That’s the libertarian in me.  Said another way, I believe a woman should have the untrammeled right to determine if she is able and willing to take on the serious responsibility of raising a child. This is not a decision that I would want somebody to make for me.  To make this even more complicated, we would have to consider when does the fetus become a viable life.  I, like many others, believe that when the baby is able to survive outside the womb, then they become a protected life. Some other points of view suggest that as soon as the sperm finds the egg, it becomes a viable life.  There is also the spectrum of ideas between these two beliefs. Abortion has become the passionate talking point of politicians and this scares the crap out of me.  Do you really want politicians deciding what you do with your private life?

As I said at the start, if I were a women considering an abortion, it would be a very difficult thing for me to decide to do, so I am glad that I never did and never will have to even think about making that decision. But, there are many women out there who have to make this choice, and hopefully they will base that decision on sound reasoning.

Do I need a BUCKET LIST? Hell no!


A popular notion of today’s senior citizens is the idea of a bucket list.  In this ritualistic behavior, a person, usually older, lists the activities that they feel need to be accomplished before they take a final breath.  Although humorous in nature, as portrayed in the movie BUCKET LIST, I think it embodies a notion of regrets accumulated throughout life.  That could have been the most depressing thing I have ever written!  Let’s look at it another way.  My favorite analogy of life is the stream bubbling gently over the rocks on its way to the sea.  In this analogy, a person is a leaf being carried by the water over the rocks, around the rocks, through the ripples and occasionally over a waterfall (ouch, that has gotta hurt) on their way to that great resting place, the sea.  As one travels down the stream, it is important not to get stuck behind a rock, but to continue your journey downstream.  I think the point here is to not get in a position where you are not moving ahead in your life.  Examples of this might be a job that totally brings you down, or a relationship that does not make you happy.  If one chooses to push against the rock with the idea that they are going to move the rock, guess what, you are going nowhere and neither is the rock.  Some people make the choice of pushing against this rock for their entire lives and never see the rest of the stream, only to be beaten up and finally decomposed to be returned to that huge organic biosphere we call earth.  Yes, this will happen even if you make the journey to the sea, but think of the things you will see and experience on you journey.  Obviously, the notion of relaxing and allowing the river to take you where it pleases is a little simplistic, but, the idea of seeing and acting on potential experiences is the path to an exciting life!  This could be as simple as accepting an invitation to go out to a place you would not normally go.  One seemingly simple act could change your life in ways you can only dream of.  You could meet a person who offers you a new exciting job, or the women of your dreams, or a new friend that may influence your life in ways you can not even imagine.  Of course there is always the potential for bad things to happen as well, but isn’t that what life is about?  There could be no ups without an occasional down, no left without a right, in fact without all these ups and downs and rights and lefts, life would be incredibly BORING!

I guess what I am trying to say is, if one lives their life, embracing opportunity as it manifests itself, there is no need for a bucket list! If you have explored all the avenues that have been presented to you, you probably have not been stuck on a rock.   The concept of life is simple at its roots, but the complexity arises when one considers the amazing journey we all experience as we make our way down the stream.  For myself, which is the only person I can truly speak of, it has been fantastic.  I do not have a bucket list but I keep my eyes open for opportunities that excite me and provide me with new knowledge and experiences that I have not yet witnessed.  As I get older, I realize like so many others that this brief adventure we call life, is a gift of immeasurable value and cannot be bought for any amount of dollars.  It’s all about squeezing every drop of water from the towel! It’s about floating down the river and gently sliding off the rocks.  It’s about not being afraid of the words ‘I love you’ or making sure the people around you know that you care for them. It’s about not taking any regrets to the hereafter, where ever you think that is.  If you live life, YOU DO NOT NEED A BUCKET LIST!

John Lennon’s IMAGINE


The song IMAGINE, by John Lennon, came over the car radio the other day and I allowed myself to be immersed in the words.  This is such an amazing song that depicts an imaginary world full of harmony and peace.  As I sat there listening to these words, I wondered why is our world so distant from this idealistic scenario.  Why are so many countries in the world immersed in continual conflict?  Why is there severe human hunger and desperation in so many parts of the world?  Why and how do individuals gain so much power so that they are able, at will, to restrict the rights and ruin the lives of millions of men, women and children?  We watch it on the news daily as people around the world die or suffer in so many ways.  Our own national news is dedicated to reporting in detail every horrible thing that happens in our country and world.  Sometimes I feel as if we are hardened to the terrible things we see over and over, courtesy of the media.

It is my opinion that IMAGINE is one of the best songs ever written to address the idea of a potential peaceful world.  People have listened to this song for many years and still enjoy it when it comes across the radio.  So, why is the world a mess?  What is it about the humans that keeps us from becoming a peaceful race of people?  Believe it or not, I have a theory.

Behavioral scientists have theorized about a human genocide gene for several decades.  Maybe this is an explanation of why the Chinese hate the Japanese, or the whites hate the blacks, or the Germans hate the Jews.  I could go on and on and on.  It’s hard to dispute this idea when one studies our history and the reoccurring theme of genocide in our world.  An impartial observer of earth would have no choice but to think that this behavior is indicative of our species.  If you believe this hypothetical gene is a real factor in human behavior, then it is easy to extrapolate this idea to the pervasive violent and self-destructive behavior that runs rampant through our world.

Ever since the first human attacked another human which is depicted in the biblical story of Cain and Abel, or more recently in the movie 2001 a Space Odyssey, we humans have been a rather self-destructive lot.  We are unable to follow a short set of rules, the commandments, or any guidelines to help us get along with each other.  War seems to be our way of culling the herd.  It seems that whenever the population gets too large we either go to war or some kind of plague takes down a large percentage of the population.

If we can imagine a world of peace, what lies in our way to prevent this from happening?  Worth repeating, what is it about human behavior that keeps us from living in peace?


Imagine there’s no heaven
It’s easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people living for today
Imagine there’s no countries
It isn’t hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people living life in peace, you
You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope some day you’ll join us
And the world will be as one
Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people sharing all the world…

The money illusion

I think it is time for people to realize just what money is, and why it
is foolish to spend your life trying to get as much as you can.  Now,
don’t misunderstand me, we do need money and the more money we have, the
more money we can spend which occasionally leads to more fun and
happiness. The problem is the system is designed to make you feel as if you have
more than you actually have.  Let’s look at a house for example; way back
in 1960, my parents bought a medium size rancher in Maryland.  They paid
the ridiculously low amount of $19,999 for it.  At the time that
was a lot of money when salaries were generally under $10,000 per year or
hourly wages were in the $1 to $3 range.  Milk was 19 cents a guart and
gas was 20 cents a gallon.  Cars were a couple of thousand dollars!
Candy was a penny to 5 cents and a loaf of bread was under a
dime!  So, back to my point, after buying this new home they had to
furnish it, maintain it, pay the mortgage, which included interest and
taxes, plus deal with inflation, which over the last 50 or so years has
been around 2.5-3.5 percent! Do you realize that the current dollar is
worth a little more than a penny in 1950 dollars?!  It does not take an
Einstein to determine that the cost of a house is a lot higher than what
you first think. After living in the house for almost 50 years my
parents passed away and the house was sold for the incredible amount of
somewhere around $300,000! That seems like a large sum of money but the
numbers behind it are insane.  First, the interest alone on a 30 year
loan is generally doubles the cost of the loan which means the cost of
the home is really about $40,000.  Second. as the value of the home
inflates, the taxes go up and in 50 years that adds up to a lot of
money!  Let me make up a number of $1000/year on average for the taxes
over 50 years, which is probably very low. That comes to $50,000 in taxes for the
life of the house. Not to mention, the $300,000 return is in current
dollars which are inflated almost 100 times! Now think about
maintenance; the roof was probably replaced twice, the flooring was
constantly being upgraded, occasional painting interior and exterior,
appliances replaced, furnace replacement, heating,
cooling and lighting the place, insurance and general maintenance on the
multitude of different systems in a house. Do you see my point?  The
house is a great thing for many reasons but it is not a terribly great
way to invest your money. In fact, there is no great way to invest you
money, that’s right, none!  Yes, sometimes people buy something and due
to circumstances, that thing, be it a house or a bar of gold, the price
skyrockets, thus the individual makes a substantial gain in their worth,
but this is the exception, not the rule.
The bottom line is the system is rigged and beyond occasional blind
luck, your money will not grow in real dollars over time. There are some
individuals who save large amounts of money over their careers and sit
on that money.  This money is being eroded on a daily basis
by finance fees and  inflation.  In reality your money is just holding its own in
real value, if you’re lucky. I always laugh when people say that they are getting 2
or 3 percent on their savings. Really?? That is the general level of
inflation, which means that you are breaking even, not growing your
wealth. The real problem arises when people retire.  Many retired people
are on a fixed income, which means their income will not match inflation.
That means, don’t plan to live too many years after
you retire or inflation will get you before the many diseases of old age have
their way with you! With all that information in your heard, I guess there is one final
piece of advice I think I can give you, enjoy your life and remember that the real things in
life are not sold in Wal-Mart but are in your heart and the people around you.

About my gardens and not Trump.

Every time I think about Trump I get sick to my stomach, so I am going to write about my gardens!

This year I got a great head start on my gardens with the help of my friend Dorothy and I am excited about the results.  Over the last week the rain has helped create a canopy of green that takes my breath away.  Not so very long ago the woods were dark and not very pleasing to the eye but now they are a testament to the power of the seasons and the sun.  Hopefully these pictures will help you forget for a short time the crazy world in which we now live.


This is my new rain garden designed to help collect runoff from the new driveway.  There are a variety of plants including some hostas, grasses and perennials.  So far it has worked well at soaking up the large amount of rain that has fallen.  I love the way the rock border turned out.

My new azaleas are blooming great! I think they look fantastic up against the front of the house.

The new steps I rebuilt last summer have new pots and the garden up above is doing nicely. Sorry about the wheel barrows.

The deck garden is looking great with the phlox and to the far left is my clematis which will be beautiful real soon.

This shady deck area is what I call my hosta garden.  They seem to love it here.

I hope this served as a diversion to what we are all growing tired of.  Our world is now green again after a long. cold winter, so we should make a point of enjoying it on a daily basis.  HAVE A GREAT DAY!

Reality TV and it’s affect on society

During the last two years my friend got me interested in watching Survivor, a reality based TV show. I must say the concept of the show is intriguing.  Take a group of people, place them on a beautiful deserted island, make some rules to promote the systematic removal of their fellow islanders, provide a large cash reward for the last survivor and let the games begin.  In the season opener, the host of the program called it a grand experiment in human behavior. I believe he is correct. After watching this program for nearly two years, I have many mixed feelings about it which I will try to express in the following piece.

My biggest concern: is this type of programming healthy for society? Without getting into the gruesome details, lying, deceit, promoting one’s self, winning regardless of the pain inflicted on your fellow-man are just some of the tools needed to survive.  This seems rather divergent from the idea of living in peace.  I spend much time pondering why our society is so violent and the one theme that keeps coming back to me is TV or media in general.  The old obvious things like murder and sexual encounters are almost pass in today’s world so now we have a more insidious and divisive stab at the human brain, the teaching of a philosophy of gaining power at the expense of your fellow-man!  This is the backbone of capitalism; exploit and capitalize on other people who are lured in by the promise of monetary rewards! Survivor has been on the air for nearly 36 seasons and has generational followers.  Although the show remains virtually the same throughout that time, the producers have learned to tweak the format to bring out the worst in human behavior.  You start out with normal everyday folks and turn them into carnivorous creatures ready to devour their competition.  I guess the theme here is that the evil tendencies lurk in all our souls.


The second reality show I want to mention is The Bachelor, which picks one eligible man who is swamped with a group of generally beautiful women and through a maze of dates and other activities he might become engaged to one woman in the end.  There is a methodology of removing women as the show goes on as he narrows his field of choices. Now you need to think about this carefully, all these women come onto this show to find a man, that’s why they are there!  The show tries to bring out the personalities of the women to allow the man to choose a companion who more closely meets his criteria. I am sure that many of the things that might be said in a normal relationship development are held tightly inside for several reasons; you are on national TV, all you friends and family are watching, you will be eliminated early or some of them might be interpreted as foolish or embarrassing!

In this season’s show the man reduced his choices to two very beautiful and seemly wonderful ladies.  He expressed over and over that he had fallen in love with both women.  In light of the fact that both women were showing their very best side all the time to help ensure that they be selected, this seemed to me like a train headed for a bridge-less gorge with no brakes.  I do feel that he believed he was in love with both women even though they had spent zero time together in a real life situation.  The emotional stress that all these people were under was immense and was tearing at the very fiber of their personalities.  My friend repeatedly told me that it was just a TV show but I responded that it was a reality show with real people dealing with real situations and I felt empathy for the people involved.  Finally he chose one of the women, and the scene where he said goodbye to the woman he did not select was as heart wrenching as anything I have seen on TV!  It was obvious that he still held deep feelings for this woman he was leaving behind.

Flash forward to when he is spending more time with the lady he selected in a more reality based situation.  Life is not always exciting, not like a TV show where everything is tightly controlled.  No more exotic dates to far off lands, just a trip to a local restaurant or a movie, maybe a romantic evening alone watching a movie, making pizza or playing a game.  Gradually the image of the other lady begins to creep back into his brain.  In his mind all he can remember is the fantastic times they had together.  There were no evenings making a meal, cleaning the dishes or hanging out in the living room watching a movie.  Every moment with her was fantastic and now he is becoming bored with this REAL-LIFE experience.  Maybe he made the wrong choice…buyer’s remorse.

So now he has to tell his first choice that he made a mistake and he wants to see the second place woman.  Needless to say, she was not too happy about this.  He was deeply upset and unable to fully understand his actions.  He spent far too much time trying to get lady number one to understand what he was about to do, but he tried and tried until she told him to leave.

No doubt falling in love is a deeply emotional journey but it also requires sacrifice and work, not just fantastic dates and events.  My concern is with people who watch these reality shows and somehow confuse these renditions of life with realities of life.  Couple this with manipulation of human emotions for entertainment purposes and you are laying the tracks to failure.  Lastly I worry about a society that adopts this capitalist approach to the interactions between a man and a woman.  One of the ideas thrown out when people discuss the demise of our society is the fragmentation of marriage followed by the family.  How would the concept of family have any chance of surviving with the ideology that these shows promote?  Promoters of these shows claim they are just entertainment and not to read too much into them, but I say they are mirrors of society that reflect back to us in their own small ways the direction that our society is going.  I will give you one historical example of this, Roseanne Barr’s show  which depicted a family in constant chaos, uneducated, undisciplined and struggling to survive in an evolving technological society.  The first time I watched this show I saw it as a window into the future of the American family.  Even then I was seeing the tug-a-war between the family and a changing society.

So back to the bachelor.  In the final episode of the show we see the man asking the second lady if she will take him back, forgive him, give him another chance to win her love and devotion.  To my disbelief she took him back!  My money is that he will soon grow tired of his second choice.  When I learned that he was a racecar driver, it all came clear to me, he is an adrenalin junky. He lives on the edge, that place where all your senses are stimulated to the max. This is exactly where the show keeps their contestants, on the edge with all senses stimulated.   Marriage is an endeavor requiring communication and lots of real work.  Being married is a commitment to use all your abilities to understand and improve your spouse’s life and hopefully they feel the same way, otherwise the relationship is doomed to fail.



Forced pooling changes its name to Co-tenancy modernization and Protection Act.


This article was posted 2 years ago and here we go again,

Contrary to what many believe, Forced Pooling is not a requirement that everyone in the neighborhood install a pool.  All kidding aside, Forced Pooling is a very serious issue!  Here in West Virginia our legislature is currently deciding if we, if West Virginia want to allow Forced Pooling to be passed into law.  So what is forced pooling?


If an oil/gas company wants to drill on or near your land, they may be able to force you to allow them to drill if they get a certain percentage of your neighbors agreeing to drill!  With the inevitable passing of this bill, because of the incredibly large amount of money being thrown at our legislators, a land owner will no longer have the right to decide what is done with the mineral rights on one’s property!   Yes, they could put up a drilling rig near your home!  So much for NIMBY legislators  (Not in my back yard) who are comfortable with drilling in other places that do not effect their own environment.

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Maybe this last election was more about oil/gas companies getting the right folks elected so that they could get forced Pooling Passed than it was about all the other stupid stuff that we were fed by the media. I think it is more than interesting that so near the election we are already talking about Forced Pooling.  The new guys have not even tried out their assembly chairs before forced pooling has become a major discussion point.

Anyone who is a student of human behavior knows that land owner’s rights are taken away little by little.  The best analogy to explain this is the slowly cooked frog.  If one places a frog in a pot of cool water, it will likely sit blisfully there for a long time.  Upon increasing the heat gradually way, the frog will slowly cook, never trying to escape before it heads to that great pond in the sky.  If that frog is placed in hot water, it will immediately jump out to live to eat another insect.  We humans are very similar to our frog.  If they take away our rights very slowly, some of us, will complain, but little will be done to rectify the situation.  When a disastrous situation arises suddenly, we jump into action to save the day.

If you are concerned about your rights to decide what you want to do or not do with your land and personal property, you better be contacting your legislature to express your feelings regarding Forced Pooling. Do not be like the frog who enjoys the heat and get slowly cooked.

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