Saturday, May 28, 2011

Time for Discussion, Don't You Think? ***

It's a holiday week-end here in the US, Memorial Day week-end, the unofficial start of summer.  Up early this morning, I started thinking, "Can I afford to go visiting today"?   I'm to the point of needing other people to interact with for a break in the monotony of my solitude.  Would you believe I have started talking back to myself.  It's true.  The situation is critical and needs a remedy; thus my thoughts for escape.

The $20 last spent for gas bought me enough to make a trip to town and back, then a run to the spring, a 2 mile run downroad for gas for the mower. Today the car gauge is near empty.  Actually, the gauge is always near empty; we all know $20 doesn't go far these days. I've tightened my proverbial belt to the last notch. I'm sure each of you are in the same situation and wondering "what next".  We see the price of everything climbling daily, if not by the moment.

So I resigned myself that I will be going nowhere this weekend.  Instead I began surfing the internet; it is FREE.

Reading a headline of something or other led me to thinking of the Blue Angels, that flying team that brings roars from the crowds somewhere in the US nine months of every year - March through November-year in, year out since 1946.  The Blue Angels have been strutting their stuff/performing for 65 years, this one, 2011, the 66th year.   Today and tomorrow they are performing at Millville, NJ.

Google is a 'right smart' searcher, able to give me the information I want every time.

Keep in mind the article below was written in 2008, Gary Kohls speaking of 2006.  Today is 2011 with gas prices much higher.  I'm just saying....

Some Sobering Thoughts About the Blue Angels Air Show

July 25, 2008
By Gary g. Kohls
Gary g. Kohls's ZSpace Page

In 2006, the last time the US Navy Blue Angel air show was invited to come to Duluth, there was a news report that said that the Blue Angel fighter jets burned 8,000 pounds of jet fuel per hour of flight. 8,000 pounds of jet fuel equals 1,200 gallons. In 2006, the cost to the Navy for that fuel was $2 – 3 dollars per gallon. Today, with the current world-wide scarcity of fuel, the price of jet fuel has risen to $7 per gallon!

The 2006 news report also said that the commanding officer of the Blue Angels team was required to fly a minimum of 3,000 hours just in his training exercises in order to qualify to be commander. The other team members, just to get into the Angels, had to fly 1350 hours to qualify. It was noted that there were 15 pilots that are members, although only 6 perform at a time.

As of 2006, there had been 230 Blue Angel pilots. They perform 70 or so shows per year and have dress rehearsals before each performance. The pilots also practice their routines year-round over and around their Pensacola, Florida base of operations.

Now for an unwelcome reality check. Here’s the math:
The 3000 hours of simply training the single Commanding Officer of the Blue Angels used up 3,600,000 gallons of jet fuel just in the training phase (3,000 hours X 1,200 gallons/hr)!

How about the costs in fuel for the other 15 officer pilots? The 1,350 training hours for the 15 other officer pilots on the team (although only six perform at a time) consumed 1,620,000 gallons for each one's 1350 hours of training (1,350 hours X 1,200gallons/hr X 15). Multiply that by the 15 pilots and you get 24,300,000 gallons of fuel just for the training. At today’s costs of jet fuel, $7/gallon, for every new Navy pilot who aspires to become a Blue Angel, the costs to US taxpayers, just for training, would be $11,340,000 per pilot.

One could multiply the fuel consumption just for the training by the 230 Blue Angel pilots that have performed over the past decades and we would get the figure of 5.6 billion gallons of jet fuel (5,589,000,000 gallons) just for training!

And then if you want to get some really big numbers, one could also try to calculate the fuel costs for the upcoming year of 70 shows/year (not counting the dress rehearsals before each show and not counting the continuous training that probably goes on most days of the year), the flights to and from Pensacola, the support crew's C-130 transport plane.

Then, or course, one could add in the fact that the US Air Force’s Thunderbirds, are doing the same thing. If we could do all that, one would come up with some really astronomical numbers, but I hope the point has been made!

I know that I am probably poking a hornet’s nest of devotees of such air shows, who would rather not think of the real costs of war or the real costs of the machinery of war, but in a world of scarce and dwindling resources, especially fossil fuels, and in a world where young men and women are dying every day, not for freedom and democracy, but for the for-profit oil corporations that obviously care not for the economic suffering of its captive customers. The fallen warriors of virtually every war throughout history have mostly been working, at minimum wage, for the multitude of war profiteers who then abandon the war-wounded to essentially fend for themselves. Our soldiers and Marines are working for a whole host of institutions that make money on their sacrifices, but stop their patriotic flag-waving when the body bags come home. Perhaps acknowledging these painful truths will eventually set us free.

The main purpose of this commentary article is to expose the hidden truths that are intentionally censored out about the costs of war, so that as we Duluthians stare in wonder at the immense and lethal air power that will be exhibited this weekend, we consider all the consequences of such activities.

And when your children and grandchildren ask you in some future decade, “Daddy, what did you do in the wars for oil back in 2008? Did you do your part to conserve fuel? Did you protest the wastage? And why can’t I afford to buy my own car? For that matter why can’t you afford to drive your own car like you did in the good old days?”

Hopefully, you won’t have to say, ”I defended, either overtly or by my silence, the US’s wastage of those depleted resources for my entertainment and for the purpose of recruiting impressionable young boys and girls to think that war is glorious. I’m sorry, but I wasn’t taking the oil crisis seriously back in 2008.”

Such an apology will be regarded by your progeny as inadequate, perhaps even pathetic.

2011 Blue Angels practice schedule:  March
- 23, 24, 30, 31 APRIL - 1, 2, 6, 7, 13, 14, 20, 21, 27, 28 MAY - 4, 5, 11, 12, 18, 19 JUNE - 1, 2, 8, 9, 15, 16, 22, 23 JULY - 13, 14, 20 AUGUST - 10, 11, 18, 19, 24, 25 SEPTEMBER - 7, 8, 14, 15 OCTOBER - 12, 13, 19, 20, 26, 27 NOVEMBER - 2, 3

According to information I read, the Blue Angels team is all about getting the viewers to think about joining the military, to defend their country.

Seems there is a need to rethink where we stand today - just a bit lopsided it appears.  Keep in mind, this is all on the backs of the citizens of the US, we taxpayers.

I need a break; all this thinking about GAS makes me want to escape and go visit someone; maybe to muse about the weather for a bit or 'how does your garden grow'. I'm just saying....

Monday, May 16, 2011

I Just Had a Belly Laugh; Now It's Your Turn ***

Tennessee Declares War on the USA

 President Barack Obama was in the Oval Office when his telephone rang.

 "Hello, President Obama” a heavily accented southern voice said. "This is

 Archie, down here at Joe's Catfish Shack, in Memphis , and I am callin' to

 tell ya’ll that we are officially declaring war on y'all!"

 "Well Archie," Barack replied, "This is indeed important news!

 How big is your army?"

 "Right now," said Archie, after a moments calculation "there is myself, my

 cousin Harold, my next-door-neighbor Randy, and the whole dart team from

 Hooters. That makes eight!"

 Barack paused. "I must tell you Archie that I have one million men in my

 army waiting to move on my command."

 "Wow," said Archie. "I'll have to call ya back!"

 Sure enough, the next day, Archie called again. “Mr. Obama, the war is still

 on! We have managed to acquire some infantry equipment!"

 "And what equipment would that be Archie?" Barack asked.

 "Well sir, we have two combines, a bulldozer, and Harry’s farm tractor."

 President Obama sighed. "I must tell you Archie, that I have 16,000 tanks

 and 14,000 armored personnel carriers. Also I've increased my army to one

 and a half million since we last spoke."

 "Lord above", said Archie, "I'll be getting back to ya."

 Sure enough, Archie called again the next day. “President Obama! I am sorry

 to have to tell you that we have had to call off this here war."

 "I'm sorry to hear that" said Barack. "Why the sudden change of heart?"

 Well, sir," said Archie, "we've all sat ourselves down and had a long chat

 over sweet tea, and come to realize that there's just no way we can feed

 that many prisoners."


 If you are a REAL Southerner, you won't even need to be told to pass this


Wednesday, May 11, 2011

They didnt have the green thing in her day ***

In the line at the store, the cashier told the older woman that she

should bring her own grocery bag because plastic bags weren't good for
the environment. The woman apologized to him and explained,

We didn't have the green thing back in my day.

The clerk responded, "That's our problem today. The former generation
did not care enough to save our environment."

He was right, that generation didn't have the green thing in its day.

Back then, they returned their milk bottles, soda bottles and beer
bottles to the store. The store sent them back to the plant to be
washed and sterilized and refilled, so it could use the same bottles
over and over. So they really were recycled.

But they didnt have the green thing back in that customer's day.

In her day, they walked up stairs, because they didn't have an escalator
in every store and office building.

They walked to the grocery store and didn't climb into a 300-horsepower machine every time they had to go two blocks.

But she was right. They didn't have the green thing in her day.

Back then, they washed the baby's diapers because they didn't have the
throw-away kind.
They dried clothes on a line, not in an energy gobbling
machine burning up 220 volts wind and solar power really did dry the

Kids got hand-me-down clothes from their brothers or sisters,
not always brand-new clothing.

But that old lady is right, they didn't have the green thing back in her

Back then, they had one TV, or radio in the house not a TV in every
room. And the TV had a small screen the size of a handkerchief, not a
screen the size of the state of Montana. 

In the kitchen, they blended and stirred by hand because they didn't have electric machines to do everything for you. They cut up their own fruits and vegetables because they didn't have a food processor.

When they packaged a fragile item to send in the mail, they used a wadded up old newspaper to cushion it, not styrofoam or plastic bubble wrap.

Back then, they didnt fire up an engine and burn gasoline just to cut
the lawn. They used a push mower that ran on human power.

They exercised by working so they didnt need to go to a health club to run on treadmills that operate on electricity.

But shes right, they didnt have the green thing back then.

They drank from a fountain when they were thirsty instead of using a cup or a plastic bottle every time they had a drink of water.

They refilled their writing pens with ink instead of buying a new pen,
and they replaced the razor blades in a razor instead of throwing away the whole
razor just because the blade got dull.

But they didnt have the green thing back then.

Back then, people took the streetcar or a bus and kids rode their bikes
to school or rode the school bus instead of turning their moms into a
24-hour taxi service.

They had one electrical outlet in a room, not an entire bank of sockets to power a dozen appliances.

They didnt need a computerized gadget to receive a signal beamed from satellites 2,000 miles out in space in order to find the nearest pizza joint.

But isn't it sad the current generation laments how wasteful the old
folks were just because they didn't have the green thing back then?

Those were the days my friend
We thought they'd never end
We'd sing and dance forever and a day
We'd live the life we choose
We'd fight and never lose
For we were young and sure to have our way. La la la la...

Those were the days, oh yes, those were the days

Monday, May 9, 2011


Needing a bit of Healing Laughter?
I bet you have read this one before.  It's still funny AND EDUCATIONAL.


George, an elderly man, from Meridian, Mississippi,was going up to bed,

when his wife told him that he'd left the light on in the garden shed, which

she could see from the bedroom window. George opened the back door to go

turn off the light, but saw that there were people in the shed stealing things.

He phoned the police, who asked "Is someone in your house?"

He said "No," but some people are breaking into my garden shed and stealing

from me.

Then the police dispatcher said "All patrols are busy. You should lock your

doors and an officer will be along when one is available."

George said, "Okay."

He hung up the phone and counted to 30. Then he phoned the police again.

"Hello, I just called you a few seconds ago because there were people
stealing things from my shed... Well, you don't have to worry about them now
because I just shot and killed them both, the dogs are eating them right
now." and he hung up.

Within five minutes, six Police Cars, a SWAT Team, a Helicopter, two Fire
Trucks, a Paramedic, and an Ambulance showed up at the Phillips' residence,
and caught the burglars red-handed.

One of the Policemen said to George, "I thought you said that you'd shot

George said, "I thought you said there was nobody available!"

*( True Story ) I LOVE IT! *

*Don't mess with old people. *

*Live well, laugh often, love much!!! *

Sunday, May 8, 2011