Sunday, May 21, 2017

Now For Something Really Different...

Despite all those decades on radio and TV (5!) and all the crazy crap I had to do for Stations to promote the show, it was always my least favorite part of the job. Idealistically, I believed the audience would come and grow "organically" if the show was good enough. Saying how great it was seemed more egotistical and less attractive.

Turns out, the shows did quite ratings-wise, thank you. Because the Station spent thousands on TV production and giveaways? Or because, from day to day, the show was just that good? Listeners would just have to work that out for themselves, if so inclined.

Now comes this book, Watercolor Memories, The Story of Lauren. The title alone should be sufficient to reveal this isn't another political screed. As noted on the back cover:

It's that old high school love story told anew: Boy meets Girl. Boy loses Girl. Boy finds Girl. But this time, it takes 15 years, two proms, college, marriage, divorce, kids, careers, over 10,000 miles, a chess-playing cop and some strange guy with a beard. Even then,  the ending is a surprise and a shock. Or maybe it isn't.

So far, all 3 or 4 people who have read it say "It's got a pretty cover".

Well...

Take a look. There's a sample page on the Amazon site. Who knows? You may get hooked enough to read all of it! If you do, when you've finished please post your unvarnished thoughts on the Amazon page. The more comments, the more chances I have of having it made into a movie!

Thanks.
BW

Monday, May 8, 2017

Quote Without Comment

"My take on the "political morass" - actually "political more ass"?

Redundant. Predictable. Anathema to Liberty and Freedom. There is no area of human existence that is not in irreversible decline - except for those who never progressed past the Crusades anyway. 
The end of Western civilization as we know it is beyond salvage. Just as the laws of physics cannot be denied indefinitely, the laws of economics, human nature, and political corruption will continue until some final cataclysmic event resets the clock of human endeavor. Only this time, with the escalation of human ingenuity, we as a species have managed to progress to the point of guaranteeing our own eternal destruction. Even if such an event is avoided, the universal epidemics of aggressive ignorance, contagious apathy, and instant gratification will ensure a standard of living rivaling that of the Neanderthal - minus the unattractive skeletal manifestations.

Downer? You betcha. Yet everything to the contrary is a masturbatory fantasy to keep one distracted enough to become irretrievably lost to the reality of the times. I'm up for worthy fact-based contradictions as long as they don't rely on the Old Man In The Clouds "have faith and ye shall be saved" mythology wherein one must live in perpetual hope of some Paradise that cannot be realized until one dies. Only then do you get to see what's really behind Door #3.

Cynical? Could be - if I'm wrong; prescient if I'm correct. Frankly, I don't really give a damn either way. "On a long enough timeline, we're all dead" so the rest is just a bottomless debate. Choose not to participate and you wind up on the same side as the Winners. Or Losers.

Against this background, you might be able to appreciate my "take" on things "political" is agnostic. I can and do write, speak and argue points far less ethereal to get a paycheck for providing some small measure of intellectual entertainment - or aggravation - as the case may be. What the audience does when the show is over or the article is finished is irrelevant to me. Like it, hate it or something in-between. Ultimately we are individually responsible for what we know as well as what we decide. Everything else is a peeled balloon."

- A. Nony Mous

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

A Man's Age According to Home Depot

You are in the middle of some home projects: putting in a new fence, painting the porch, planting some flowers and fixing a broken door lock. You are hot and sweaty, covered with dirt, lawn clippings and paint. You have your old work clothes on. You know the outfit -- shorts with a hole in the crotch, an old T-shirt with a stain from who-knows-what, and an old pair of tennis shoes.
Right in the middle of these tasks you realize that you need to run to Home Depot for supplies. Depending on your age you might do the following:

In your 20s:
Stop what you are doing. Shave, take a shower, blow dry your hair, brush your teeth, floss and put on clean clothes. Check yourself in the mirror and flex. Add a dab of your favorite cologne because, you never know, you just might meet some hot chick while standing in the checkout line. And yes, you went to school with the pretty girl running the register.

In your 30s: 
Stop what you are doing, put on clean shorts and shirt. Change your shoes. You married the hot chick so no need for much else. Wash your hands and comb your hair. Check yourself in the mirror. Still got it! Add a shot of your favorite cologne to cover the smell. The cute girl running the register is the kid sister of someone you went to school with.

In your 40s: 
Stop what you are doing. Put on a sweatshirt that is long enough to cover the hole in the crotch of your shorts. Put on different shoes and a hat. Wash your hands. Your bottle of Brut is almost empty, so don't waste any of it on a trip to Home Depot. Check yourself in the mirror and do more sucking in than flexing. The hot young thing running the register is your daughter's age and you feel weird about thinking she's spicy.

In your 50s: 
Stop what you are doing. Put on a hat. Wipe the dirt off your hands onto your shirt. Change shoes because you don't want to get dog crap in your new sports car. Check yourself in the mirror and swear not to wear that shirt anymore because it makes you
look fat. The cutie running the register smiles when she sees you coming and you think you still have it. Then you remember -- the hat you have on is from Bubba's Bait & Beer Bar and it says, 'I Got Worms '

In your 60s: 
Stop what you are doing. No need for a hat any more. Hose the dog crap off your shoes. The mirror was shattered when you were in your 50s. You hope you have underwear on so nothing hangs out the hole in your pants. The girl running the register may be cute but you don't have your glasses on, so you're not sure.

In your 70s: 
Stop what you are doing. Wait to go to Home Depot until you call the drug store to have your prescriptions ready for pick too and check your grocery list for a quick stop there. Got to save trips! Don't even notice the dog crap on your shoes. The young thing at the register stares at you and you realize your balls are hanging out the hole in your crotch… who cares.

In your 80s: 
*Stop what you are doing. Start again. Then stop again. Now you remember you need to go to Home Depot. You go to Wal-Mart instead. You went to school with the old lady greeter. You wander around trying to remember what you are looking for. Then you
fart out loud and turn around thinking someone called your name.

In your 90s & beyond: 
*What's a home deep hoe? Something for my garden? 
Where am I? 
Who am I? 
Why am I reading this?
Did I send it? 
Did you? 
Who farted?


Thursday, March 16, 2017

Liberty Is Not For Wimps


Guest Columnist - Dr. Walter E. Williams
John M. Olin Distinguished Professor of Economics 
George Mason University


Most Americans, whether liberal or conservative, Democratic or Republican, do not show much understanding or respect for the principles of personal liberty. We criticize our political leaders, but we must recognize that their behavior simply reflects the values of people who elected them to office. That means we are all to blame for greater governmental control over our lives and a decline in personal liberty. Let me outline some fundamental principles of liberty.

My initial premise is that each of us owns himself. I am my private property, and you are yours. If we accept the notion of self-ownership, then certain acts can be deemed moral or immoral. Murder, rape and theft are immoral because those acts violate private property. Most Americans accept that murder and rape are immoral, but we are ambivalent about theft. Theft can be defined as taking the rightful property of one American and giving it to another, to whom it does not belong. It is also theft to forcibly use one person to serve the purposes of another.

At least two-thirds of federal spending can be described as Congress' taking the rightful property of one American and giving it to another American, to whom it does not belong. So-called mandatory spending totaled $2.45 trillion in 2015. Thus, two-thirds of the federal budget goes toward Medicaid, Medicare, Social Security, food assistance, unemployment and other programs and benefits that fall into the category of taking from some and giving to others. To condemn legalized theft is not an argument against taxes to finance the constitutionally mandated functions of the federal government; we are all obligated to pay our share of those.

Many say that government spending guarantees one right or another. That's nonsense. True rights exist simultaneously among people. That means the exercise of a right by one person does not impose an obligation on another. In other words, my rights to speech and travel impose no obligations on another except those of noninterference. For Congress to guarantee a right to health care, food assistance or any other good or service whether a person can afford it or not does diminish someone else's rights -- namely, their right to their earnings. Congress has no resources of its very own. If Congress gives one person something that he did not earn, it necessarily requires that Congress deprive somebody else of something that he did earn.

Another area in which there is contempt for liberty, most notably on many college campuses, is free speech. The true test of one's commitment to free speech does not come when he permits others to say things with which he agrees. Instead, the true test comes when one permits others to say things with which he disagrees. Colleges lead the nation in attacks on free speech. Some surveys report that over 50 percent of college students want restrictions on speech they find offensive. Many college have complied with their wishes through campus speech codes.

A very difficult liberty pill for many Americans to swallow is freedom of association. As with free speech, the true test for one's commitment to freedom of association does not come when one permits people to voluntarily associate in ways that he deems acceptable. The true test is when he permits people to associate in ways he deems offensive. If a golf club, fraternity or restaurant were not to admit me because I'm a black person, I would find it offensive, but it's every organization's right to associate freely. On the other hand, a public library, public utility or public university does not have a right to refuse me service, because I am a taxpayer.

The bottom line is that it takes a bold person to be for personal liberty, because you have to be able to cope with people saying things and engaging in voluntary acts that you deem offensive. Liberty is not for wimps.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Guest Column - About Mary

“You’re gonna make it after all...” With those words ringing in our ears, we of a certain generation sat and prepared to watch Mary Richards make it through another 30-minute episode of her life. It was a Saturday night ritual, that CBS line-up featuring Mary Tyler Moore, Bob Newhart, and Carol Burnett. And it made a big impact on our lives, who we were and who we became in future years.

It may be difficult to understand how a television show, or several television shows could have such a big effect. After all, it’s just TV, right? Aren’t there hundreds of shows to choose from to watch? Yes, in today’s world. But in the 70s, TV was different. There still were the idyllic shows set in small towns where all the problems of the world were neatly wrapped up in 30-minutes (including commercials). But as the 60s melted into the 70s, television moved more and more toward reflecting “real life”, taking a look at society and bringing it into our living rooms nightly.

I suppose Norman Lear probably was the leader of this movement with All in the Family, The Jeffersons, Sanford and Son, Good Times, Maude, and what seems like dozens of other shows. But to this then-teenager sitting on the brown and tan plaid sofa in the den, The Mary Tyler Moore Show was it. Who didn’t want to go out and become a successful working woman with a beautiful apartment, gorgeous clothes, and supportive co-workers? Could I really have that? The “reality TV” of the 70s made it seem so.

Feminism? Perhaps, but only in today’s lexicon. It wasn’t strident, it wasn’t overbearing and bossy (like Maude) – Mary was working at what she loved, having fallen into the job via true serendipity. She applied for a secretary’s job and voila, Mary instead becomes an associate producer (at $10 less a week than the secretarial job paid)! “If you can get by on $15 less a week, I’ll make you a producer,” Lou Grant tells her. “No, no, I think all I can afford is associate producer.”

Over the years, as Mary Richards grows more confident in her work and (in my opinion) earns the title “journalist”, we of that certain generation learned that most jobs didn’t have to be divided into “male” or “female”. Look! Barbara Walters and Leslie Stahl reporting network news! On local TV, Judy Licht, Rose Ann Scamardella and Pat Harper. Jane Tillman Irving, Mary Gay Taylor, and Irene Cornell on the radio (yes, I grew up in the NYC suburbs). The fictional Mary Richards was daily reality. It never crossed my mind that I couldn’t be a broadcast journalist, only that I wanted to be.

With the news of the death of Mary Tyler Moore, I wonder how often she may have thought about how her character was a trailblazer. Heck, she herself was one (along with then-husband Grant Tinker) founding MTM Enterprises. I’ve read all of Mary’s books and many articles about her and I don’t think she ever considered herself a feminist. In a 2013 PBS show, Moore said she turned down an invitation to join the feminist movement. “I believed, and still do, that women have a very major role to play as mothers. It’s very necessary for them to be with their children."  
Moore continued, "That’s not what Gloria Steinem was saying. She was saying you can do everything and you owe it to yourself to have a career. I really didn’t believe that.” The Mary Tyler Moore Show may have coincided with a rise in feminism, but I am glad that the role model for Mary Richards was not Gloria Steinem.

Are any of today’s TV programs influencing the future of young viewers? I’m hard-pressed to think of one. Maybe the 70s were a more magical time, a time when TV shows were more encouraging, enlightening, and uplifting than today’s reality or fictional escapism. With only four or five channels back then, you had to get up off that plaid sofa to switch to another show. But that sofa certainly complimented the gold shag carpeting that Mary Richards had in her apartment.


Cassie Wilson
Broadcast Journalist/Writer

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Secrets and Lies

Secrets and Lies

It was announced today that the thirty-five year prison sentence of Chelsea Manning has been Presidentially commuted. Barack Obama deserves no credit for this, he's only planting land-mines for Donald Trump.When she is released in May (no, I don't know why the delay), she will have served seven years, during which she was confined in such an inhumane manner that she went mad and tried to kill herself more than once. Knowing the mentality of jailers as we do, we can only imagine the other ways that she was intimidated and tortured by corrupt "corrections" personnel, acting under the scoundrel's excuse of patriotism.

Naturally, all of the conservatives in the New Media are going fully as ape-shit as they accuse their unhappy anti-Trump opponents of going. They are absolutely beside themselves (and kind of funny to watch), with self-righteous indignation because a very humble and vulnerable Army private did their job for them.

She paid the price. Manning was tried and imprisoned for releasing 750,000 secret government documents, many of them detailing dubious or illegal government activity, not to some enemy, but to Wikileaks, and thus to the entire world, including the very individuals who are forced, every year, at implicit IRS gunpoint, to pay for them. In a democracy, supposedly comprised of self-ruling people, the government _has_ absolutely no right to secrecy, or else how will these self-ruling people know what decisions to make?

And before anybody's knee jerks, and he brings up the favorite alibi of hip-pocket tyrants and armchair dictators everywhere, this is _especially_ true of the so-called "representative republic" that America is loudly advertised to be. where, again supposedly, We The People hire politicians, and they hire bureaucrats to make these decisions for us. I don't recall ever consenting -- in a Jeffersonian sense -- to such a corrupt system. How can any of us vote informedly, if politics itself is cloaked in guilty secrets? Isn't that exactly how we got stuck with an evil administration that, in 1941, enticed a fairly stupid enemy into providing us with an excuse to destroy them? Isn't that how an equally evil regime faked an incident that led to 60,000 American deaths in Southeast Asia? And how about those "Weapons of Mass Destruction" in Iraq? Representative republicanism is a complete and total hoax.

A murderous hoax.

In a colossal example of the Catch-22 phenomenon, rivaling the Spanish Inquisition or the Salem witch trials in its evil absurdity, at Manning's "trial", the government was unable or unwilling for all-too-convenient "security reasons" to name any identifiable individual whose life was endangered by the information she released. Had they been committing war crimes, as at Abu Ghraib, was she supposed to keep her mouth shut about that? And in any case, in this enlightened era of an all-volunteer military, there is presently nobody out there in the field who was forced to be there at gunpoint. The risk of having one's ethical shortcuts embarrassingly exposed is simply a new one to add to the list of consequences of going in Harm's Way.

It is the very depth of churlishness to condemn Chelsea Manning as a criminal or traitor. She was, in fact, fulfilling her military oath far better and more faithfully than those she worked for. If Obama hadn't dirtied it by giving it, like a Crackerjack prize, to Joseph Biden, she deserves the Presidential Medal of Freedom (as do Julian Assange and Edward Snowden). As it is, we welcome Manning back into civilization and only hope that others will be as civilized as she is.


L. Neil Smith
The Libertarian Enterprise

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Which Way Do You Run?

Among the ironies in this video, people around the world view the US as the greatest threat to peace; voted three times more dangerous than any other country.

The data confirm this conclusion:

*Since WW2, Earth has had 248 armed conflicts. The US started 201 of them.

*These US-started armed attacks have killed ~30 million and counting; 90% of these deaths are innocent children, the elderly and ordinary working civilian women and men.

*The US has war-murdered more than Hitler’s Nazis.

Lie-started and Orwellian-illegal Wars of Aggression is all the evidence necessary for US military to refuse all war orders (there are no lawful orders for unlawful war), and for officers to arrest those who issue them.

Click here