Wednesday, October 5, 2011

October 7 Notes:

1. The "NINETY NINE PERCENT movement" has been much in the press recently. it is helpful to consider the first amendment in the US constitution:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

The "99% movement" fits the standard of the 1st amendment. Consider the power of the words "peaceful assembly and petition the Government to redress grievances..." These are our guaranteed liberties as Americans.

If you are interested in keeping track on the movement - visit the official web site: The movement is now spreading to other American cities... Whatever your political persuasion - it is important to understand what fellow Americans are saying - these are not a wild group of anarchists - these are fellow Americans making a plea for their government to be responsive.. I urge you to read notes from those participating: Visit the "we are the 99%" website: ... also of interest:

2. After more than 90 days since the last rain, a loop of the jet stream dipped south and brought us the first rainclouds of the season. The steady light rain that fell through the night gave the air a brilliant freshness!
Rain through an Oakland High School window
Throughout today occasional thunder showers have added more until we have received an inch of rain for the storm. You must live in a dry land to appreciate what an amazing thing the first rain of the fall season is!
By all indications this is another La Nina year – but La Nina ( the little girl) has a record for fickleness – sometimes wet, sometimes dry… so we’ll see what this one brings!

2. This was a memorable week for the family as well – The marriage of our niece, Ari, to Alex Sanders took place in Las Vegas!

Wedding location & Las Vegas Mountains
Of course we were there along with almost all of the other Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, and friends…from both sides of the family.

The Flory family and friends
It was a joyous wedding! – an elegant wedding! – a wedding with lots of laughter and sharing! The preparation, the ceremony, the music, the reception speeches – the dinner – and dancing…it was a great pleasure to be there.

The kiss
Ari and Alex will live in New Jersey, where Ari is completing her PhD and Alex works in soft ware development; but we hope to get them back to the West Coast when possible. CAB, Ari's brother, prepared a grand surprise for his sister - A "flash mob" was carefully planned and successfully implemented - a video was sent out well in advance to train all who wanted to participate.

The Wedding party
A special treat for us was having time with our two sons! Peter and his wife Marila came from Portland, and Andrew from Virginia. We had our own side reunion.

3. I was looking at old photos recently and I realized that until quite recently people didn’t smile when they had their photo taken…
Old family photo
When did people start smiling for photos? When did people start saying “Cheese” to make it look like they were smiling. I noticed that during the wedding photos I and others are conditioned to automatically smile – strange phenomenon…

4. I have a new favorite book to recommend to you all – “ The Big Thirst” – The book talks about "water", its science, its origins on earth, the politics of water scarcity, how our concept of free and accessible pure water has changed out health and out lives, the scarcity of water in third world countries. and how we have to adapt our water use in a coming age of water scarcity.
Pacific ocean
Also some specific case studies of cities and regions and how they have dealt with water issues. I continually quote amazing facts to Judy as I read… The book is readable and holds your interest.. I give this book an enthusiastic 5 stars *****!

Melting snow water at the leading edge of an ice field

To learn what others think - read Amazon reviews here:>

5. Those of you that read my blog regularily know my political stand on national issues . I urge you to read the editorial by Robert Reich speaking on the wisdom of rebuilding our national infrastructure at this time.’s-infrastructure/

In case you don’t remember Mr. Reich – He served in the administrations of Presidents Ford and Carter and was Secretary of Labor under Clinton from 1993 to 1997. Reich is now a Professor of Public Policy at the at the University of California at Berkeley.

5. And from the Daily Kos: "Did the USDA put salmonella in our meat? No, meat-packing corporations did. And they've got enough lawyer-and-lobbyist power to keep the USDA regulators at bay. Did the EPA dump raw oil into the Gulf of Mexico? No, BP did. They cut corners on safety and no regulator was in a position to stop them. Did the government kill the 29 miners at Upper Big Bend coal mine? No, Massey Energy did, and had enough clout to keep the mine going even after inspectors had found more than 500 safety violations."

And still we have politicians running for office saying they would eliminate government regulations! Our world has become so technical that it is absurd to imagine that each person could assess for his or herself whether a product or practice is safe... And how about large corporate operations that are well beyond the scope of individuals citizens to influence...?

If you found something in this blog that you found interestesting or relevant - you can pass it on to a friend by sending them this e mail address:

Note that it is also possible to add your comments or responses to what I have written... ( or read what others have written). Just click on "comments" at the end of the blog...