Monday, December 31, 2012

Big Footed in Massachusetts Politics

As stated previously, I haven't been happy with the Democratic Party's platform. Not that I'm please with the Republicans, but in Massachusetts I'm working in a one party state so most of my frustration is directed to the only party that actually exists.

To be honest those who are upset with Democrats, didn't think Scott Brown was that great, but better then the alternative. The cult like existence of the Democrats in Massachusetts, ensure anyone will win against Brown in 2012. It was revenge, and no one, not even an innocent amateur Cherokee genealogist being accused as a compensated agent of the tea party or a sad excuse of an inactive attorney (me), who follows the rules of the Mass BBO will get in the way. Really it's creepy, and I'm happy to see Democrats standing up to this bull-sh!t finally.

It's bad enough when I feel the heads of the Massachusetts Democratic Party push candidates not to run/drop out, to make sure 'the right candidate' got in. But when you have the DCCC and the DSCC putting their two cents into the decision making it into a non-decision, it gives Oliver Stone a lot to agree with.

Big-Footed by Mayor Bill Manzi of Methuen

With the short time frames involved the Washington power structure has made it incredibly difficult for any other potential candidate to gain traction. The other candidates who have been prominently mentioned are Congressman Michael Capuano, Congressman Stephen Lynch, and State Senator Benjamin Downing. Others, like former Congressman Marty Meehan, Vicki Kennedy, Edward Kennedy Jr., Congresswoman Niki Tsongas, and a host of others, took themselves out of contention, leaving a more limited choice for Democrats. Under those conditions, and fearing a Scott Brown comeback, Washington insiders determined that they would unite behind Markey in an attempt to stop a primary bloodletting that might hurt the Democratic nominee.

We didn't have a primary in the last election, and we got Elizabeth Warren. Sorry, but she's lazy cheat that lacks leadership skills. If the state really really really wanted a pro-choice/gay marriage supporting female Senator, we had a good handful, many of them honest people and if needed be would have Massachusetts and the country's best interest at heart, and not the Democratic Party's interests to maintain power over the will of the people. So the Democrats can chant and berate that Senator Scott Brown is/was nothing more then an NRA/Wall St. supporter, but he's pathetically is/was a lot more sincere in his representation then anything the Democrats at that party level have produced.

Friday, December 28, 2012

7 Quick Takes Friday

1.I'm still enjoying Christmas.

2.I've been good over the years to utilize the Advent season wisely. My children still do many of their school/club activities pre-December 25th, but we make sure Christmas is still Christmas until Epiphany. We never over do Christmas on Christmas morning. I've taken my in-law's tradition and do not do big ticket items on Christmas and stagger out visiting relatives over the week.

3. I'm also good about avoiding the malls/shopping centers immediately after Christmas. This helps as well, I remember as a child being in the 'return line' the day after. Terrible way to enjoy December 26th. So buy gifts that don't risk returning.

4.My youngest wanted to know why I didn't have a baby. I would happy to have more, but circumstances beyond my control do not foresee that occurring. He did understand that life comes from eggs, which I thought was interesting he had that connection. I do talk about the reproductive system at times with the older children. So he knows that I have 'eggs', just not like the eggs in the fridge though.

5.Someone bought my children Nerf guns, the high-powered battery operated type. Um, yeah. Thanks. Nerf darts everywhere.

6. We're still cooking, here as well due to the Christmas feast, which I enjoy. We have large breakfasts and even enjoy some take out, which is a treat for us.

7.I need to make an MP3 compilation of Christmas music, I can't even rely on some of the online music stations for Christmas music after December 25th.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Assessing risk and helping others in Lowell

Over Thanksgiving, we were gifted with a box of Meals Ready to Eat from my husband's family that lives in Pennsylvania. They received this case of MREs during Hurricane Sandy from FEMA, but never used the food and thought our children would like the novelty of eating MREs. I didn't feel comfortable eating these MREs, while I know victims of the storm are still recovering. In fact I didn't feel comfortable with these MREs at all, unless it was truly an emergency situation. I rather give them to someone who needs these meals.

I did have the homeless camps in mind, here in Lowell homeless camps are present and have existed over years. However I would not put myself at risk, by simply approaching the camps. I do not know the situation, even though there is relatively little problems with the camps themselves, there are individuals with addictions problems residing in the camps. And I'm not sure how they feel about strangers approaching them, as well.

I was in luck yesterday, when I saw a Facebook posting asking Paul Belley if the homeless camps needed anything. Paul lives closer to the camps, and in the past has gone over to see if they have any needs. Usually blankets. I immediately commented about our MREs. And those MREs are in Paul's hands today, to be brought down later this week.

The world is never risk free, most situations are safe in Lowell. It is important to understand how to assess risk for average person, and I fear in the name of keeping children safe we will fail to teach them how to assess risk.

Friday, December 21, 2012

7 Quick Takes

1. Despite living in Jack Kerouac's neighborhood, here in Lowell, I don't care, Bad Catholic. Otherwise great article on Jack Kerouac being Catholic here in Lowell and it's influence.

"“The Catholic Church is a weird church,” Jack later wrote to his friend and muse Neal Cassady. “Much mysticism is sown broadspread from its ritual mysteries till it extends into the very lives of its constituents and parishoners.” It is impossible to overstate the influence of Catholicism on all of Kerouac’s work[...]The influence is so obvious and so pervasive, in fact, that Kerouac became justifiably incensed when Ted Berrigan of the Paris Review asked during a 1968 interview, “How come you never write about Jesus?” Kerouac’s reply: “I’ve never written about Jesus? … You’re an insane phony … All I write about is Jesus.”"

2. A comment from Free Range Kids on what you should REALLY do to keep your children safe.

"Minor as the act of holding a door open for a parent right behind you (especially one with a baby in an infant carrier) may seem, it is a moment to care or be cared for. It eases the hassles of parenthood and makes us feel welcome and connected. Sometimes it starts us talking. At the very least it gets us to take a good look at one another, allowing us to recognize which parents belong with which children. It sets us up to be an extra set of eyes to protect those children."

"To ask me to slam the door in the face of a parent I recognize breaks down that community. And to what end? The shooter at Sandy Hook faced a similar security system. He was not let in, he shot his way in. Moreover, even when protecting military secrets I am not asked to shut the door on someone I know belongs in there.


4.Had to have a 'what if' conversation with Katherine, if a gunman ever attacked her school. She brought it up, due to a memorial service at the parish school today. The 'what if' involved the custodian and and the school secretary with cans of mace and duct-tape, ideally. You know, we don't want to kill the gun man, because either he is mentally ill or/and needs to be forgiven. Otherwise there are few places to hide, so use the alternative fire exit routes. Unlike a scenario when a there is a bank robbery, when you want a proper lock down, in case the criminal is just using the school to hide from the police. James asked, when the gunman killed himself was it out of guilt for what he did? I respond probably not, that killing himself was a part of the plan. The gunman rejected humanity/love to the point he wanted to take innocent life with his own. I told him I couldn't wrap my head around that either.

5. I did almost all of my shopping on Zulily this year. I had to get in done Thanksgiving week, because it takes three weeks to fully ship. Very happy with the quality and price, but a little nerve wrecking in if you're buying time sensitive. Mostly close-out deals from name brands, and everything is first shipped to them to be checked for quality so items are actually 'opened' there for that purpose.

6. I missed Minor Revisions last night, my youngest has his sleep out of cycle and went fell asleep too early only to awake at 9pm. Hopefullly it will be on Youtube for a week.

7. My twitter account is up and embedded.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

I guess we should be happy that Gerry Nutter is concerned about the sanctity of the Catholic Mass.

"Is it Just me or does this just seem WRONG?"

My parish is having a second collection, requesting 'scratch tickets' and Gerry thinks it's sacrilegious.

It's once a year, and the parish is trying something different for a collection. It's not like the priest is just scratching the tickets up on the altar with the Eucharist pushed off to the side, just as the priest doesn't count a monetary collection up on the altar. The collection by-passes the altar to a financially secure spot immediately after the collection.

We're celebrating the Mass, not the money. But the parish has operating costs, so yes we need 'to ask' for money. I'm not a fan of scratch tickets/lottery/gambling myself, but if the parish wins something so be it. It's worth the chance once a year at Christmas. Some people love buying scratch tickets, if they buy them for the holidays, then why not purchase one for your parish.

Yeah, It's my parish. Saint Michael's. And yes, we do give money to the poor and other charities. 7% each week of the 1st collection is given to a local charity, the rest go to the expense of the parish. EACH WEEK, all 52 of them. And on the First Sunday of Advent season there was a giving tree, with dozens of gift tags for local agencies that serve the needy. The parishioners gave there as well. Never mind there is also a Saint Vincent de Paul chapter to serve the poor.

I'm not suppose to brag or gloat about what the parish does or doesn't do. I will make note on its collection practices, since it is implied that we are not serving others.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

I don't want my children to live in a prison.

I want to live in a neighborhood where I can have my windows open during the day, even at my children's school. My darling, skipping school on a crusade to get bullet-proof windows is only for your ego, and not helping. From the Lowell Sun

"Undeterred by the potential cost -- which Tony McDermott estimated at "about 200 grand per school" to retrofit each school with a more layered security system -- he and his daughter hope to jump-start a nationwide movement to dramatically increase school security, beginning in Dracut, said Tony McDermott, who owns Critical Clouds, a highly specialized security-software company based out of his Wheeler Road home in Dracut. "As parents, we find Vera's efforts quite amazing," said Tony McDermott, speaking also for his wife, Leslie. "She needed a place to focus her sadness and anger. We're very proud of her."
Excuse me, she is a girl who lives hundreds of miles away. She lost no one and knew of no one from this incident. Her father has a financial incentive. Yet she is so sadden by this, she is excuse from her obligation from school work. ""I came home from school and the news was on, and my mom showed me," Vera said of how she first learned of what happened in Newtown. For now, Vera is too frightened to return to school. Her father says they are taking it day by day. So rather than remain scared and do nothing, Vera asked her father what she could do to improve her school's safety, she said. Actually she is being truant, and this is not a legitimate excuse to stay home. So she can't be a nanny in all our lives and demand we be imprisoned for our own safety.

I'm bringing my children outside and look at the sky with no barriers, before I get accused of neglect. What happened in Newtown CT, made them sad as well. I told them the gunman either rejected or was unable to love humanity, and it is our job to love not just one another but also to go out in to community and love our neighbor.

My God! Pray for us!

I take my chances I want to be free, not hide with fear! What next dig up the soccer fields, cancel parades, and ban children from grocery stores, because it just isn't safe for them to be in the open public.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Marriage reduces domestic violence in new mothers.

Less Partner Abuse, Substance Abuse and Post-Partum Depression Among Married Women, Study Finds

Dad isn't just committed to the child, but also understand the well-being of his children is based on the well-being of the mother. Creating a direct relationship with her, as his spouse (wife) makes a difference in studies. There is an inequality in relationships, for women who can acquire marriage with the father of her children and those who do not.

"What is new in this study is that for the first time we looked at the duration of unmarried cohabitation and found the shorter the cohabitation, the more likely women were to suffer intimate-partner violence, substance abuse or post-partum depression around the time of conception, pregnancy and delivery," Dr. Urquia said. "We did not see that pattern among married women, who experienced less psychosocial problems regardless of the length of time they lived together with their spouses."

I see nothing about federal tax benefits/exemptions in this study? I see nothing from the Bible either.

Feminists, if you really cared about decreasing domestic violence, you would understand healthy supportive marriages was the answer to our dilemma and not contraception. Rather promoting men as husbands and fathers, we have to rely contraception or abortion, because we are taught not to trust them. And men are taught that women are nothing more then sexual gratification. Today, the greatest benefit of marriage is now legal divorce.

When human civilization picks itself back up, we will have to give it a new name. People, we really messed up big time on this one.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

The Jr. ROTC high school student and the four losers in the sedan.

I was walking back up Bridge Street, in front of me was a Hispanic high school student in his Jr. ROTC uniform walking the same direction. While on the John Cox Bridge, a beige sedan with four white guys in it. They seemed slightly older, possible 18-20 and the music was pumping, not too loud, with some rap music with its fair share of 'f*cking n*gger' in the lyrics. The scrub in the passenger side rolls down the window and calls for the Jr. ROTC teen, the teen looks backs and the passenger with his fingers 'shoots' at him like a child would. The teens laughs at him of but nervously and picks up his pace, I could not overhear the conversation.

As we cross Bridge Street and the VFW, the teen looks back as the sedan that is stuck at the red light. He catches up with a female student walking home from Lowell High, and after they cross the intersection he tugs at her sleeve asking her if she wants a coffee at the Dunkin Donuts they're passing.


Friday, December 7, 2012

7 Quick Takes Friday

1. There are lot of children today with no siblings or cousins. All they see are aging baby boomers, telling us there should be fewer children.

2. I posted this earlier, but I liked it.

3. I have a twitter account, but I can't find the proper widget for a newsfeed on blogger. Any help? I tried through Twitter Widgets and it isn'th there.

4. Reports Cards were sent home. My children aren't geniuses, but they might be Saints (or atheists).

5. The War on Christmas, senior living style. As reported in the Lowell Sun, the residents are not allowed to have a Christmas Tree in the community room. It is a privately managed building, not government, so management has that right. But these residents are paying thousands of dollars in rent, and they can't get a decorated tree to sit in the corner for a few weeks a year. Sounds like a lovely place for any grandparent to live....

6. The tree will got up this weekend. It will stay up until New Years. Sorry, that's the best we can do, but other decorations stay up.

7.Sometimes I get seriously sadden, by the state of affairs and I have to remind myself I live on Earth. Sh!t is constantly going to happen.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Marriage jokes don't make sense, after it was redefined.

Less programs that disenegage parents, and more that actually engages them in their child's well-being please

Living in a socio-economic diverse neighborhood, a good number of my son's classmates at the public Pre-K qualify for free/reduced lunch. The Lowell's Pre-K program is only 2.5 hours, so the first thing they do in the afternoon session is 'have lunch'. I didn't realize this, until I visit my son's classroom since he was 'Student of the Week'. My son doesn't qualify, so he just has his snack. It takes up 20 minutes of valuable teaching time for children, we can assume may fall into an 'at-risk' category, even though a limited income does not assume 'at-risk' in learning.

Even if they qualify for lunch, that should be outside learning time, there is a larger issue here. The parents who qualify, are not lazy or incompetent, they're loving parents who are fully capable of feeding their own children. Feeding a child lunch is not that hard, even teen mom is capable of understand that giving her child a glass of milk, a peanut butter sandwich, a banana or some baby carrots. Cost may be an issue and maybe a need for some practical home economic skills, but there is no need to treat a low income parents as if they are unable to make healthy food choices for their own children.

I'm all those for helping those who may need a little extra, even if it is in the form of a government program, what I'm not in favor is government unintentionally taking the basic functions a parent could perform away from them.

Monday, December 3, 2012

And they want to make birth control 'over the counter''.

Risk of Blood Clots Two-Fold for Women With Polycystic Ovary Syndrome Taking Combined Oral Contraceptives, Study Finds
PCOS affects between 6% and 10% of women of reproductive age with some estimates as high as 15%, making it the most common endocrine disorder in this age group. Risk factors for heart disease such as hypertension, diabetes, obesity and others are double among women with PCOS compared with women without the disorder. It is usually treated with combined oral contraceptives to regulate menstrual cycles and to help with acne and excessive hair growth associated with the condition. However, combined oral contraceptives are known to increase the risk of cardiovascular events.
Contraception is not a substitute for women's health.