We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
30 people for dinner uses one heck of a lot of appetizer plates, gumbo bowls, dinner plates and dessert plates, serving trays, pots and pans, utensils, wine glasses, linens, etc. It's our family tradition to leave it all out overnight so everything sticks hard to them, then take on the challenge in the morning. However, every last bit is cleaned up now. In keeping with the times, we did the whole thing without any servants/helpers. I am happy to have a left-over mountain of cheese grits. I can live on that stuff.
Well, we are blessed with wonderful friends. And, by the way, I need to mention that the person who "offered to bring desserts" last night is not only a fine lady and a talented pastry chef - but also an avid hunter and shooter. I was afraid she might try to pull a Cheney on me someday in a pheasant field if I didn't add that important detail.
Seen at the bird feeder this morning: A fine male Eastern Towhee (image). One wouldn't think it, but they are technically large sparrows. Early migrant, or over-wintering? They are indeed less common in New England than they used to be, for unknown reasons. They are woodland birds, and our eastern woodlands have been expanding as New England agriculture becomes less profitable.
Folks, we are not going to rebuild our economy by vilifying public U.S. corporations that are operating businesses in "tax havens," even tiny little islands in the Caribbean. The relatively new accounting rules around corporate tax (known as "Fin 48" to the cognoscenti) wrap corporate taxes up in the same intensive audit review as other financial reporting. Sure, there will be the occasional case of fraud, but the top U.S. corporations (and even much smaller ones) now have vast internal audit staffs that blow the whistle on any attempt -- which now cannot come from the "top" -- actually to evade taxes. No, if you want to stimulate economic activity in the United States, massively reduce the corporate tax. At least make us competitive with, say, France, which any corporation would prefer to the United States as a location for its profits.
A new progressive's guide to action, from The Nation. Good grief. These folks live in the 1930s.
It's not your great-great-great-great grandfather's Bank Medici
I was on a Southwest Airlines flight once when the flight attendent was explaining what to do in the case of a "water landing". She then joked "Yeah right. Actually, there is no such thing as a water landing. If we crash into the water..." After seeing the video, I now know she was wrong. This excellent pilot and his crew made a water landing.