Wednesday, July 22, 2009


Yesterday was one of those hectic days at work. I decided to go to the D'Iberville Marina with the intention of taking a 30 minute photo break and then coming back and eat the lunch I brought. Instead, I spent nearly 45 minutes trying to entice a beautiful little calico kitten. The kitten ate some chips I had brought with me but still would not let me get closer than 3 feet. I made a cat toy from discarded fish line and pipe cleaners and tried to edge closer but as soon as I moved closer than 3 feet, back it went under the pier.

I was relieved to learn that the kitten was feed every day. I was also told the kitten would maintained the 3 foot barrier even with the kind person who has been feeding it every day for the past month. I had planned to take it some food later. We have a bag of cat food at work that we used for a momma cat and two little kittens. She left with her babies after a few days. I guess all the people going into and out of the offices spooked her.

Like I said, my intention was to take the kitten some food after I got off work. It was a very hectic day and I didn't leave work until after 6 and I decided I would until today to go. Someone else was feeding it.

On my way home, I saw a homeless man walking down the road. He looked like he was about to pass out from the heat. I swung back around and went back to the office and grabbed a coke, two bottles of water, and the lunch I didn't get to eat. I normally don't do this but the man looked so pitiful. I parked my car and walked up to him and asked if he needed any water. He said yes. I took the water to him and then asked if he would like some food. He said it had been a few days since he had anything to eat. He had a medical bracelet on. I gave him the food and the coke and then left.

On the way home, I cried most of the way because I realized I had just feed a human being like I would have a stray cat or dog. It made me somewhat ashamed that there are fellow Americans who have no homes, no food, and cannot find a job.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Hidden Jews

Throughout history, Jews were forced to convert. The ones in Spain called the Marranos, are a famous group who forced to convert to Christianity and yet many kept up their Jewish customs and traditions and then faced the murderous Spanish Inquisition.

Nissim Mossek has a very interesting video about Palestinians of Jewish origin. These Jews also remained hidden throughout the centuries after being forced to convert to Islam.

H/t: Israellycool

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

In Defense of the 6th Amendment

Thank you Justice Scalia!

Legal experts and prosecutors are concerned about the results of last month's U.S. Supreme Court ruling that requires lab analysts to be in court to testify about their tests. Lab sheets that identify a substance as a narcotic or breath-test printouts describing a suspect's blood-alcohol level are no longer sufficient evidence, the court ruled. A person must be in court to talk about the test results.

The opinion, written by Justice Antonin Scalia, has prosecutors and judges shaking their heads in disgust and defense lawyers nodding with satisfaction at the notion that the Constitution's Sixth Amendment guarantee that defendants "shall enjoy the right . . . to be confronted with the witnesses against him" is not satisfied by a sheet of paper.

"This is the biggest case for the defense since Miranda," said Fairfax defense lawyer Paul L. McGlone, referring to the Supreme Court ruling that required police to inform defendants of their Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination. He said judges "are no longer going to assume certain facts are true without requiring the prosecution to actually put on their evidence."

Now do something about those laws which violate our 4th, 5th, 6th, and 8th Amendment rights.

Whose Sexist?

From Jew in the City

Tuesday, July 14, 2009


I have two bird feeders at my home. It's fun to watch the birds. I have cardinals, blue jays, mourning doves, ringed necked doves, chirping sparrows, red-headed woodpeckers, downy woodpeckers, Eastern bluebirds, and occasionally gold finches. There's a pair of cardinals that have been nesting in one of my oaks the over 10 years.

Another pair have been nesting for a couple of years. It's been fun to watch them with their fledglings. For a few days, the parent birds will continue to feed them. But after awhile, they stop. The fledglings flap their wings, open their beaks and chase their parents around. The parents tolerate this behavior for a few days and will feed the youngsters every once in a while. But then the parents start chasing the fledglings away. They've taught their babies what's good to eat, to be aware of predators, and how to fly. They've given them the skills necessary to survive on their own.

The sparrows are much the same way. Except when their fledglings first jump out of the nest, their parents so them places to hide. They do this until the fledgling sparrows have more experience to fly. One fledgling had some sort of accident. He is without one leg. It is very difficult for him to hop across the ground in search of seed. But he manages.

The woodpeckers are fun to watch. The downey woodpeckers will climb down a tree while the red-headed ones climb up. The northern flickers root for bugs on the ground and generally ignore the bird seed and sunflower seeds provided.

There are two major flocks. There are about 30 mourning doves and about the same number of sparrows. The ring-necked doves usually do not flock but one Saturday, there were about 8 of them.

The cardinals have been prolific this year. At any given time, I can count up to eight cardinals at one feeder and another 4-5 at the other.

I started the bird feeders because I was concerned about the amount of land that was cleared close to my home. The developers promised they would keep the oak trees but sadly, a lot were torn down. The birds lost feeding grounds. The developer bull dozed the area and put in paved roads on what were dirt tracks. It has been over 6 months since the developer has done any work. The ground is slowly recovering. Perhaps the developer is a victim of the current financial crisis. I suspect it is because of the large number of apartments built in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. There are so many now that rent prices have dropped.

Perhaps the cleared area will once again grow into a nesting area and refuge for other animals. There's a turtle my son calls Bob that lives in the shed and a possum that lives there as well. A coyote has been spotted by others in the neighborhood. I haven't seen any sign of the deer that used to come to my yard in the winter looking for acorns.

I wished I had started the bird feeders sooner. The antics of the birds can bring a smile. The squirrels do as well. There's one that is super hyper and vigilant. He spends more time scampering up and down the trees more than he does eating. There are about ten squirrels. For winter, I'll add another feeder and another bird bath.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Socialism in Action!

This weekend, instead of having a tea bag protest, really help your community:

Alternative Protest: Million Can

HOW: Act locally. Here are some examples:
• Take a bag of food to a local pantry
• Organize a food drive where you work or play, your church or motorcycle club, etc.
• Organize some friendly competition amongst a group of blogs
• Challenge your Facebook & Myspace friends and your twitter followers
• There's no one right way to get involved. Look around you, see the need and do something about it.