Texas Liberal

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Texas Lt. Governor Candidate Jerry Patterson Is Prepared To Shoot—Though The Target Is Not Clear

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Republican Texas Land Commissioner and 2014 Lt. Governor candidate Jerry Patterson is prepared to shoot.

Though I’m not sure who Mr. Patterson  is shooting at in the context of 2nd Amendment issues because nobody is coming to take your gun.

Could Mr. Patterson appear any more weak and insecure than he does in this picture?

But if going on about guns will keep these folks from some other issue where a real debate is taking place then I suppose it is for the best.

While this society is in fact blood drenched in gun related violence, there is no credible nationwide effort to address this concern.

Just today there was workplace gun violence in Houston.

From the Houston Chronicle

“A salesman shot and wounded his manager during an argument at a car dealership along Interstate 10 in west Houston Friday morning, officials said…The shooting happened in an office at the dealership, police said. The salesman and the manager got into an argument that escalated into a scuffle, and the manager was wounded.”

The gunmakers collect the cash as people buy more and more guns, the pandering politicians stay in power, and folks keep dying.

November 30, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | 2 Comments

I’ve Not Been Blogging As Much Of Late Because I’m Working On Something & Because I’m Tired Of Stuff

Regular readers may have noticed that I’ve not been posting everyday.

This is for two reasons.

One is that I’ve been working on an art/creative project. This project has diverted some of my attention away from the blog.

The other reason is that I’m really just tired of a bunch of stuff and I need a bit of a blog break.

A lot of things out in the world are just so stupid.

As the picture above suggests, this blog is still a going concern. I’ll be posting on a reduced schedule for the time being.

Thank you for reading Texas Liberal.

November 29, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | | Leave a comment

Still Not At Terms With The Outcome Of The Election

This citizen of Houston was as of a few days ago still somewhat frustrated with the outcome of the recent election.

November 26, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | 3 Comments

Transformers

I stopped and looked at this scene I saw in Houston last week because I hoped that the heavy machinery on top of the dirt were in fact Transformers and that they would start fighting.

November 26, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , | 1 Comment

What Are The Best Black Friday Specials & Deals In Houston And Elsewhere?

It is time for the so-called Black Friday.

Many Americans will be out shopping.

What are best deals and specials for Black Friday here in Houston and elsewhere?

Treating working people well would be a very good deal and would be very special on your part.

Taking part in advocacy for the rights and fair treatment of working people would also be a very special and good deal.

There is no point in lecturing people about endless shopping or about what stores people choose to visit.

People are free to shop as much as they wish and at any place that suits them.

What is of greater value is asking the stores we visit to treat people well.

Wal-Mart could treat employees better and still make plenty of profits. 

Though, of course, people are indeed free to boycott business places that engage in what they believe to be offensive practices.

The working person you are dealing with on Black Friday—or on any day that you are out shopping— is no different from you.

A lack of respect for the person behind the counter is the same as an absence of self-respect.

I would suggest that the fates of most working people in this country are connected. If we don’t care about the wages and working conditions of people we deal with each day, we can be certain that this absence of shared concern will be exploited.

This concern also logically extends to people in other countries who make the goods we purchase.

The work of caring for each other and caring for ourselves is up to each of  us.

We have to decide what kind of people we are going to be as individuals , how we are going to treat others, and what kind of society we are going to have.

November 23, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | 2 Comments

Please Have A Nice And Safe Thanksgiving

I hope folks are having a nice and safe Thanksgiving.

I’m writing this post at about 2 PM on Thanksgiving Day.

I’ve already had dinner at a local restaurant.

On the menu was the roast pig you see above.

I guess the pig did not have very much to give thanks for.

Please at least have a day better than the one the pig is having.

November 22, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , | Leave a comment

The Tables Of Self-Respect And Respect For Others Are Always Set—Will Folks Show Up?

The tables of hope, self-respect and respect for others are set.

They are always set.

The question is will the people show up?

(Picture taken at the American Sign Museum in Cincinnati.)

November 21, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , | 1 Comment

The Things I Have Done With Time Alone—Time Alone Is Excellent

I’ve got a 47 hour stretch with no work and with nobody else at home.

Here is how I have spent the first six hours of this time alone.

First—I got a can of clam chowder for dinner at Walgreens as I drove home from work.

Below you see the food aisle from where I got the chowder at a local Walgreens. They got everything you need in that aisle so long as you don’t need very much.

I also stopped at Memorial Park here in Houston on the way home and took a 3 mile walk on the jogging trail.

While walking I read Mayflower by Nathaniel Philbrick. I’ve been walking and reading on the Memorial Park trail for 14 years so far and have not bumped into anything yet.

There certainly is wickedness at the core of our national history when you read how we double-dealt the native population at every turn in the 17th century.

I’m reading Mayflower to study up for Thanksgiving.

I’m sure that Thanksgiving is not all about food and then rushing out to buy stuff as soon as your meal is over.

Once home I fell asleep for 2 hours and had a dream that I was walking along the ocean in Corpus Christi, TX, and that I saw a seal.

I suppose I had the dream about Corpus Christi because I was recently looking at some pictures of a trip I took to Corpus in 2008.

Visit Corpus Christi for a good time. All the Texas coast has interesting things to see.

Below is the picture I took four years ago that formed the central image of my dream.

There was once a Caribbean Monk Seal that had a range just south of Texas. But people killed them all. There are no seals in the Gulf of Mexico.

Click here to read about this seal and where it lived before they were all killed.

After waking up from my dreamy nap, I busted open the clam chowder for a fine dinner and have now moved on to writing a blog post.

With six hours down and 41 hours to go, who knows what more will happen with my excellent time alone.

November 20, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Waffle House/Wheel Of Fortune

This Waffle House sign I saw in the Houston area a few days ago with a burnt out  “A” reminded me of a big Wheel of Fortune puzzle that nobody would buy a vowel to solve.

I’ve not seen Wheel of Fortune lately, but apparently this season marks 30 years of the show.

November 16, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | 2 Comments

The Shadow Sells And Supports The Substance

I saw this picture of Sojourner Truth a while back with a caption below that reads—“I sell the shadow to support the substance.”

Sometimes hard facts are best and are what you need.

But so often, when you are trying to convince someone of something, or trying to understand something yourself, it is the essence of the facts, or the essence of the larger point, that you are looking for.

I’ve found that people easily able to grasp the essence of the matter at hand, or the “shadow” as Sojourner Truth says here, are often the more flexible and humane people I meet.

Rigidity and needing every fact can be toxic to understanding the world around you and in getting along with others.

Being open and flexible, and being able to grasp the issue at hand from the facts that are available is a gift.

Here is information about Sojourner Truth.

November 15, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | | 2 Comments

It Is Difficult To Know What The Future Will Bring—At Least It Will Bring Something

As the sign above suggests, it is difficult to know what is ahead in life.

I saw this sign while out and about in Houston.

The good news though is that the sign at least implies there is something ahead.

November 14, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | 2 Comments

When Should The Thanksgiving Turkey Be Thawed?

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Thanksgiving Day is almost here and you need to know how to thaw your turkey.

Thanksgiving Day in 2012 is Thursday, November 22.

You do have the option of a vegetarian Thanksgiving.

Above are some PETA advocates of a veggie Thanksgiving.  They are dressed as PETA Pilgrims.

PETA has meat-free Thanksgiving recipes.

As for myself, I’ll be having turkey—unless I have something else instead because I don’t like turkey very much— and I would like the turkey thawed correctly.

These turkeys below are thawed, but are not quite ready for the table.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has guidelines for thawing a turkey.

Follow these guidelines so you do not poison your family and guests.

If you feel that the government is always lying to you, thaw the turkey your way and take your chances.

From the USDA instructions—

Fresh or Frozen?

Fresh Turkeys

  • Allow 1 pound of turkey per person.
  • Buy your turkey only 1 to 2 days before you plan to cook it.
  • Keep it stored in the refrigerator until you’re ready to cook it. Place it on a tray or in a pan to catch any juices that may leak.
  • Do not buy fresh pre-stuffed turkeys. If not handled properly, any harmful bacteria that may be in the stuffing can multiply very quickly.

Frozen Turkeys

  • Allow 1 pound of turkey per person.
  • Keep frozen until you’re ready to thaw it.
  • Turkeys can be kept frozen in the freezer indefinitely; however, cook within 1 year for best quality.

Do not play around with this stuff. Do not make others sick.

Here is more of what the USDA suggests—

Thawing Your Turkey

There are three ways to thaw your turkey safely — in the refrigerator, in cold water, or in the microwave oven.

In the Refrigerator (40 °F or below)
Allow approximately 24 hours for every 4 to 5 pounds
4 to 12 pounds 1 to 3 days
12 to 16 pounds 3 to 4 days
16 to 20 pounds 4 to 5 days
20 to 24 pounds 5 to 6 days

Keep the turkey in its original wrapper. Place it on a tray or in a pan to catch any juices that may leak. A thawed turkey can remain in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 days. If necessary, a turkey that has been properly thawed in the refrigerator may be refrozen.

In Cold Water
Allow approximately 30 minutes per pound
4 to 12 pounds 2 to 6 hours
12 to 16 pounds 6 to 8 hours
16 to 20 pounds 8 to 10 hours
20 to 24 pounds 10 to 12 hours

Wrap your turkey securely, making sure the water is not able to leak through the wrapping. Submerge your wrapped turkey in cold tap water. Change the water every 30 minutes. Cook the turkey immediately after it is thawed. Do not refreeze.

In the Microwave Oven

  • Check your owner’s manual for the size turkey that will fit in your microwave oven, the minutes per pound, and power level to use for thawing.
  • Remove all outside wrapping.
  • Place on a microwave-safe dish to catch any juices that may leak.
  • Cook your turkey immediately. Do not refreeze or refrigerate your turkey after thawing in the microwave oven.

November 13, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | 1 Comment

Veterans Day 2012

Sunday, November 11 is Veterans Day. Monday is when the holiday will be observed with bank closings and no postal delivery.

Here is an excellent set of facts about veterans in America from the United States Census Bureau.  The Census reports that there were 21.5 million veterans in the United States as of 2011. Click the link for a statistical profile of America’s veterans.

Here is how the Census Bureau describes Veterans Day—

“Veterans Day originated as “Armistice Day” on Nov. 11, 1919, the first anniversary of the end of World War I. Congress passed a resolution in 1926 for an annual observance, and Nov. 11 became a national holiday beginning in 1938. President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed legislation in 1954 to change the name to Veterans Day as a way to honor those who served in all American wars. The day honors military veterans with parades and speeches across the nation. A national ceremony takes place at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia.”

Here is the link to the Tomb of the Unknown Solider. 

Above you see a picture of where a portion of my father’s ashes are kept at the Rhode Island Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Exeter, Rhode Island. Tony was a combat veteran of the Korean War.

While regretfully I have not yet been able to visit this cemetery, there is apparently a nice walking trail that you can explore at the cemetery that is maintained in part by the University of Rhode Island. URI is where my father attended college.

Here is what my father wrote some years ago about war—

“One thing that I learned is that the young men who fought in our wars should never be forgotten…Another fact I learned…is that millions may serve but far fewer fight. So, in reality, for many who have served, war is a glory-and-gory myth that feeds on its own legends and publicity.…Another truth I learned is that civilians are combatants in war–embattled victims perpetually on a losing side….That brings us to the biggest deception: The need to be ready defend our freedom if we are to keep it. Those who say that freedom has a price are absolutely right, and wrong: International conflict today is beyond ideology. The only freedom American and Russian leaders offer their  people today is the freedom to kill ourselves in the name of freedom.  This is not freedom, but allegiance to a suicidal death culture….Today, we are servile to our masters, mistaking economic well-being for true freedom, which is the freedom to live hopefully and not to die needlessly.” 

A good thing we could do for our veterans is to respect them and treat them well while they are still with us.

Another good thing we could do is to stop uncritically venerating everything military—especially since so few are willing to serve in our all-volunteer forces and we are not at heart sincere as a nation in saying we respect those who serve—and work towards a culture of peace and true respect for human life.

November 11, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

President Elect Romney—They Never Saw It Coming Because They Did Not View Obama Voters As Equals

Above is a picture from the Romney President Elect website that was up for a brief time.

It seems the Romney campaign never saw the defeat coming.

This is no surprise at all.

Mr. Romney and Paul Ryan were clear that they saw a large portion of the nation as nothing but lazy moochers.

The nearly all-white party they led denied the seriousness of rape in a view shared by Paul Ryan.

How could such righteous men be defeated?

The idea of defeat was apparently so unlikely that it was not even considered.

Yet in the end Romney-Ryan were defeated by a diverse coalition of non-persons, and people so lazy that they got to polls is sufficient numbers to carry the day.

November 9, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | 17 Comments

Taking It Easy—I’m Certain The Obama Second Term Will Be Nothing But Blue Skies And A Day At The Beach

I took it easy yesterday on the day after the election.

I spent the day walking along the beach at Galveston, Texas.

Was I able to do this because in a second Obama term many of us will be able to freeload and do nothing while the “wealth creators” and the “job creators” do all the work?

No.

I was able to take the day to drive to Galveston because I had the day off from work.

The conservative idea out there after this election that people voted for Mr. Obama because they wanted free stuff is just about the dumbest thing I have ever heard.

I guess this is what you get from folks who deny global warming, and who thought until the very end that Mr. Romney would win the election.

November 8, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | 7 Comments

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