Sunday, July 31, 2011

America's Relationship With God. The American Century. Photos & Sewing.

Warnings for America

"America must rediscover the qualities that originally made it great. That will not be easy."

Warnings for America
"Two newspaper articles in particular caught my eye recently. The first, "U.S. Funding for Future Promises Lags by Trillions," appeared in USA Today (Dennis Cauchan, June 7, 2011). It covered a sobering phenomenon we've discussed previously in several articles—the skyrocketing amount of financial obligations created by the U.S. government with no realistic way to pay for them.

While the federal government took on $1.5 trillion last year to finance the budget deficit, it shockingly added 312 times that amount, "$5.3 trillion in new financial obligations in 2010, largely for retirement programs such as Medicare and Social Security," according to the article. The net effect? "That brings to a record $61.6 trillion the total of financial promises not paid for" (emphasis added throughout).

Numbers like these are so huge that people find them almost meaningless. To put it in perspective, if you spent $1 per second, 24 hours a day, you would spend $86,400 per day and more than $31.5 million per year. It would take you over 32,000 years to spend a trillion dollars!
Multiply that by 61 times, and you have some idea of that one part of America's debt problem. If you're an American, your share is $534,000 per U.S. household, "more than five times what Americans have borrowed for everything elsemortgages, car loans and other debt."

The other article, titled "Decline and Fall of the American Empire," was written by Larry Elliott, economics editor for the British news-paper The Guardian (June 6, 2011). It's a stern warning for a nation on a perilous path, and shocking coming from such a left-leaning paper:
"America clocked up a record last week. The latest drop in house prices meant that the cost of real estate has fallen by 33% since the peak —even bigger than the 31% slide seen when John Steinbeck was writing The Grapes of Wrath," the famous novel of Depression-era America.
Elliot points to America's 9.1 percent unemployment rate, to one in six Americans relying on government food stamps and to budget deficits that, percentage-wise, rival those of Greece, which is on the verge of financial implosion.

His sobering conclusion? "America in 2011 is Rome in 200AD or Britain on the eve of the first world war: an empire at the zenith of its power but with cracks beginning to show.
"The experience of both Rome and Britain suggests that it is hard to stop the rot once it has set in, so here are a few of the warning signs of trouble ahead: military overstretch, a widening gulf between rich and poor, a hollowed-out economy, citizens using debt to live beyond their means . . . The high levels of violent crime, epidemic of obesity, addiction to pornography and excessive use of energy may be telling us something: the US is in an advanced state of cultural decadence."

For years The Good News has warned about America's cultural, societal and spiritual decline. It's becoming so obvious now that even a secular economics editor writing for a highly liberal newspaper can recognize the connection between the nation's "cultural decadence," as he put it, and its downward economic spiral.
Elliott's article concludes with this: "Above all, America must rediscover the qualities that originally made it great. That will not be easy."
We couldn't agree more! In the following pages we'll examine some of those qualities that "originally made [America] great." We hope and pray that you personally, and all of our readers, will rediscover and apply those qualities!

America's Relationship With God
According to many polls, well over fifty percent of Americans believe that their country is headed in the wrong direction. It is not hard to see why. The United States has not bounced back from its most severe economic slump since the Great Depression. Unemployment remains stubbornly high, and the national debt continues to skyrocket. President Obama and Congress must act by August 2 to raise America's national debt ceiling, or the country will have to renege on some of its financial obligations for the first time in history, due to its inability to borrow any more money. This could endanger the fragile economic recovery.

Why is America suffering so many national woes? Could it be due to our relationship with God and our view of His Holy Word? America claims to be a Christian nation, but labeling ourselves as such does not make it true. The Founding Fathers who established the nation were men who respected the Bible; almost all of them professed Christianity. They at times considered the superintending providence of God when they wrote the foundational laws that comprise the basis of the American Constitution.
There is inscribed upon the eastern pediment of the building housing the United States Supreme Court a row of the world's law givers. Included among these figures is a characterization of Moses with two tablets in his hands. The Ten Commandments were written upon two tables of stone.

There are Bible verses etched in stone all over the Federal Buildings and Monuments in Washington, D.C.
America needs to practice what it displays so prominently in its capital. This issue of The Good News will provide for you a sketch of America's biblical foundation during the nation's formative years. You will also read of America's departure from some of the eternal foundational principles of the Bible and what the future holds if the nation does not reverse its downward spiritual trend.
If America does not repent, you—our readers—can. You will be blessed by God if you do." Article by Scott Ashley

The "American Century": What Was Really Behind It?

"Seldom has a nation dominated an era as the United States dominated much of the 20th century. Its remarkable achievements transformed the world for decades. But what was really behind its amazing accomplishments? Is there more than meets the eye?

In the history of the world, never has a nation come into power, wealth and world influence as rapidly as the United States in the 20th century. The "American Century," as some historians have labeled it, saw a union of states that had almost split apart in the 1860s rise to world power status and levels of wealth unimagined in the 19th century.
The "American Century": What Was Really Behind It? But was it merely American will and energy and luck, combined with a republican form of government, that allowed this to happen? Or is there another reason we can point to that turned a nation of immigrants into the powerhouse it became?

The background most don't realize

The biblical patriarch Abraham is acknowledged as the father of the Jewish and Arab peoples today. But what most do not realize is that he was also the father of the Anglo-Saxon peoples of the British Commonwealth and the United States.
The Good News explored that little-known history in our January-February 2010 issue. For the full story, we invite you to review it and also to request or download our free booklet The United States and Britain in Bible Prophecy, the fascinating but true account of American and British national ancestry.

Suffice it to say here that God passed the national promises made to Abraham on to his grandson Jacob. When old and near death, Jacob conferred these promises to his grandsons Ephraim and Manasseh.
Let's follow the scene in Genesis 48. Jacob's son Joseph presented his own sons, Ephraim and Manasseh, to their grandfather. Jacob then laid his hands on Joseph's sons to transfer the blessings to them. Crossing his arms so that Ephraim, the younger, would receive the greater blessing, Jacob pronounced the future of these lads, a future that stretched out thousands of years from that time.
Jacob said of the descendants of the two boys: "He [Manasseh] also shall become a people, and he also shall be great; but truly his younger brother [Ephraim] shall be greater than he, and his descendants shall become a multitude of nations" (Genesis 48:19).
Notice also that Abraham's descendants were to number into the hundreds of millions! God promised him, "Your descendants shall be as the dust of the earth; you shall spread abroad to the west and the east, to the north and the south" (Genesis 28:14).

These promises were never fulfilled in biblical times. While they experienced some significant periods of national wealth and power, Abraham's descendants, the Israelites, did not then rise to the level of greatness and dominion that had been foretold. Eventually they were carried away into national captivity at the hands of the Assyrian and Babylonian Empires in the eighth and sixth centuries B.C., respectively.
If the promises made to Abraham and passed down to Ephraim and Manasseh were ever fulfilled, it would have to have been later—much later, in our day! As we will see, the promise of a large population was a key to American achievements and the fulfillment of some of the other promises of national greatness in the 20th century.
The amazing truth is that the people of the United States are descended in large part from Manasseh (while Britain and other nations of British heritage are descended from Ephraim).

The national commitment of World War II

Except for its two-year intervention on the side of Great Britain and France in World War I, the first 40 years of the 20th century were peaceful for the United States. This long period of peace allowed tremendous expansion in power and wealth.
American industrial might blossomed. By the late 1920s, the United States had surpassed Great Britain and Germany as the world's leading coal, steel and iron producer. Its manufacturing ability transformed the United States in the 1920s and 1930s. By 1940, most American families owned an automobile, a refrigerator and most of the other accoutrements of modern life.
But the peaceful life Americans enjoyed in 1940 was soon to change as the nation watched the growing Nazi storm in Europe and Japanese imperial expansion in Asia. Isolation, the belief that this was not America's war, evaporated on Dec. 7, 1941, when the Japanese launched a preemptive strike at the U.S. Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. The United States entered World War II with the solid backing of the majority of Americans and a commitment to the all-out national effort needed for victory.

Among the blessings promised to Joseph's descendants were "blessings of the breasts and of the womb" (Genesis 49:25). The early 20th century saw the fulfillment of that prophecy among the descendants of Manasseh, when from 1900 to 1940 the U.S. population doubled to more than 130 million, fueled by a high birthrate and immigration.
An advanced and mechanized agricultural system, combined with efficient transportation based on the world's leading railway system, also made it one of the world's healthiest populations. After Pearl Harbor, millions of healthy young men—and women—volunteered for the armed forces. The United States was ultimately able to field some 16 million in uniform.
World War II saw the use of mechanized war machinery on a scale unprecedented in the history of warfare. Fighting in both Europe and the Pacific required a vast output of guns, tanks, aircraft and ships. American industry quickly converted from producing consumer goods to producing goods for the war effort.
At Ypsilanti, Michigan, the Ford Motor Company's gigantic Willow Run plant began turning out B-24 bombers by the hundreds, then thousands. At its peak in August 1944 the Willow Run plant produced 14 B-24s every day. Those bombers were crucial in systematically demolishing the industrial capacity of Germany and Japan, reducing their capacity to wage war.
All these war goods and the millions of troops had to be delivered to the fronts. America's railroads provided an efficient way to move troops and war material to America's ports. By 1940 the U.S. merchant fleet had become one of the world's two largest, along with Great Britain's. This vast fleet of thousands of ships was needed to transport troops and war materiel to Europe and the Pacific.

Sudden mastery of the seas

But with the outbreak of war on two fronts, American shipping needs grew. Henry Kaiser was one of America's leading industrialists. A master of manufacturing efficiency, he contracted with the U.S. government to produce "liberty ships"—slow-moving freighters designed to do one thing: transport lots of armaments and supplies efficiently. Kaiser streamlined production techniques at his shipyards, eventually launching a new liberty ship every 10 days.
Victory in the Second World War required mastery of the seas. Between them, the United States and British Commonwealth controlled most of the major sea gates—such as the Suez Canal, the Panama Canal, the Strait of Gibraltar, the Strait of Hormuz and the English Channel—that could be used as choke points for shipping. Notice that God told Abraham that his descendants would "possess the gate of their enemies" (Genesis 22:17).
The Royal Navy controlled shipping in the English Channel and Suez Canal. America used the Panama Canal to save weeks of transit time for cargoes from the Atlantic seaboard to the Pacific. Without control of these passages, victory would have been much more difficult.

The beginning of the end for Nazi Germany probably was the German defeat at Stalingrad in December 1942. But ultimate defeat for Hitler's dream of a Nazi empire accelerated in June 1944 when thousands of American and British forces landed on D-Day at Normandy, on the French coast.
Gen. Dwight Eisenhower, as commander of the Allied Expeditionary Force, agonized on the date to launch the invasion. Several days of bad weather made aircraft reconnaissance impossible and seas too rough for the landing craft.
But a break in the weather was forecast for June 6. Early that morning, German defenders on bluffs overlooking the beaches were stunned to peer out over the English Channel and see nearly 5,000 ships. Many felt the hand of God was involved in providing the crucial weather break needed to launch the invasion.

Some of the fiercest fighting of the war took place over the 11 months that followed, leading to Germany's surrender in early May 1945. Trapped in Berlin, Hitler committed suicide. The nightmare of Nazi oppression was past. But a defiant Japan still had to be dealt with.
Several millennia earlier, God had described to ancient Israel the blessings that would follow if they honored and obeyed Him: "You will chase your enemies, and they shall fall by the sword before you. Five of you shall chase a hundred, and a hundred of you shall put ten thousand to flight" (Leviticus 26:7-8).
Except to some degree during the time of Joshua and a few times under David and Solomon, this prophecy likewise was never fulfilled. Yet a development occurred toward the end of World War II that could be deemed a latter-day fulfillment of that prophecy.
It provided America, a nation that comprised only 5 percent of the world's population, with the power to militarily control the other 95 percent. For the short time that the United States was the sole possessor of nuclear weapons, it made the United States the undisputed military leader of the world.

The Manhattan Project

Despite its advantages in manpower, industrial capacity and wealth, America realized that its war effort could be trumped if the Axis powers successfully developed a long-rumored "secret weapon."
By the late 1930s, several of the world's leading physicists, such as Robert Oppenheimer, Enrico Fermi and Albert Einstein in the United States, and Otto Hahn, Fritz Strassmann and Werner Heisenberg in Germany, had concluded that the tremendous, almost unimaginable energy locked in the nucleus of the atom could be released to create a weapon so destructive that the first nation to possess it would be assured of victory.
In Germany, Adolf Hitler was aware of this and ordered a research and development project to produce an atomic bomb.
As America began its rapid mobilization to enter the war in early 1942, President Franklin Roosevelt had also been informed about the destructive potential of nuclear energy. Historians acknowledge that America's decision to pursue a nuclear weapon stemmed largely from fears that Nazi Germany was already at work on one.
In the United States, Oppenheimer and Einstein, the latter a brilliant Jewish physicist who fled Germany in 1937, had worked out the theoretical framework for the bomb. Einstein wrote several letters to Roosevelt, urging action before Germany could take the lead. But it would take a vast national commitment of resources to support the research and development to get from theory to actually having a weapon to deliver.
Roosevelt appointed Oppenheimer to head up a research group to study the feasibility of using nuclear fission, the splitting of the atomic nucleus, as the basis of the weapon.

In the fall of 1942, with Germany in control of Europe and Allied forces reeling in the Pacific, Roosevelt gave the Manhattan Project the green light. Production of the bomb would require uranium-235, the addition of plutonium (an extremely rare element produced from uranium) and a site for final production of the weapon.
It was decided that these activities would be carried on, in utmost secrecy, at three laboratories that were established in Oak Ridge, Tennessee; in Los Alamos, New Mexico; and in Richland, Washington. Later in the war a research site was established in Canada at Chalk River, Ontario, where scientists and engineers from Britain, Canada, New Zealand and other nations carried on additional research.
The main requirement was the production of enriched uranium-235, which would require a remote location where secrecy could be maintained. So in late 1942, with utmost secrecy, the U.S. government purchased a 60,000-acre tract of secluded, wooded land in Anderson County, Tennessee, about 30 miles west of Knoxville. So tight was the secrecy that even Tennessee's governor at the time had little awareness of Oak Ridge's real purpose.
Production of plutonium required a large nuclear reactor. The Hanford site near Richland, Washington, was chosen for its location near the Columbia River, a source that could supply water to cool the reactors required for plutonium production.
On a bleak mesa in New Mexico, the government created the Los Alamos National Laboratory. In addition to being the main "think tank," Los Alamos was responsible for final assembly of the bombs, mainly from materials and components produced at Oak Ridge. It was at Los Alamos that final bomb manufacturing took place—where casings, explosive lenses and enriched uranium were assembled into the actual weapons.

Early on the morning of Aug. 6, 1945, a trio of B-29 bombers took off from a base at Tinian Island, about 1,800 miles from Japan. Col. Paul Tibbets commanded the lead plane, the Enola Gay, which carried the first atomic bomb to be used in warfare.
The target city, Hiroshima, was deemed to have considerable industrial and military significance. At 8:15 a.m. Tibbets released the bomb, "Little Boy." The resulting blast was brighter than the sun. It produced temperatures greater than 5,000 degrees Fahrenheit, and a shock wave that approached 700 miles per hour.
On Aug. 9 a second bomb was dropped on Nagasaki, an important port city and industrial center in the south of Japan. Between them, the two bombings resulted in unbelievable destruction.
On Aug. 15 millions of Japanese citizens huddled around their radios to hear an important announcement by their revered emperor. Hirohito told his people of his decision to accept the Allied terms of surrender. To fail to do so, he told them, would "result in an ultimate collapse and obliteration of the Japanese nation." World War II, in which some 60 million people had died, was now over.

Putting a man on the moon

Victory by the Allied forces in World War II left the United States as the world's undisputed supreme power. But within a few years, the Soviet Union also had atomic weapons. And in the next decade, these two powers would square off in another race for world prestige—the space race.
Victory in Europe at the close of World War II brought an unexpected and, at the time, unrealized benefit to the United States. A virtually unknown band of 118 German scientists and engineers decided to surrender to the U.S. Army rather than fall into the hands of the Soviet Red Army.
Their young leader, the brilliant and charismatic Wernher von Braun, had led Germany's efforts to develop the V-2 liquid-propelled rockets that rained by the hundreds on England late in the war. Fortunately for England, the V-2's crude guidance system caused most of the rockets, armed with deadly one-ton explosive warheads, to miss their marks.
But Von Braun had proven the viability of liquid-fueled rockets, and the V-2 would prove the developmental grandparent of America's Saturn V, the giant rocket that less than 25 years later would launch men to the moon.
Amid the chaos of the end of the war, the U.S. Army gathered up all the V-2 parts and pieces they could find and sent them with the Von Braun team to the U.S. military base at Ft. Bliss, Texas. Under U.S. Army direction, Von Braun and his group continued the research and development of rockets. Aided by a growing team of American scientists and engineers who would soon take the forefront, V-2s achieved higher and higher altitudes—up to 244 miles in 1949.

The term rocket soon gave way to a new term: guided missile, a large rocket, directed in flight by a sophisticated guidance system, that could travel up to thousands of miles to deliver a warhead—even a nuclear one. But Von Braun had always dreamed of space travel. From his earliest years, he knew that rockets could carry human beings into space.
The Russian launch of the Sputnik satellite in 1957 caught America off guard. Development of rockets to carry human beings accelerated, and early in 1961 America was able to launch Alan Shepard into a suborbital flight. Shortly afterward John Glenn became the first American to orbit the earth.
By the late 1950s, the United States was involved in the space race, but it was not a national commitment. Congress decided by 1958 to make space exploration a civilian function, and that year created the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. NASA would soon become an acronym well-known to the average American.

The elections of 1960 produced a new, energetic young president. John F. Kennedy was a believer in space exploration and saw it as a cause, a national project, on which to focus the nation's attention. In a speech before Congress in May 1961, Kennedy issued the challenge: "First, I believe that this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to the earth."
Kennedy's electrifying announcement gave rise to the Apollo-Saturn program, the national effort to put a man on the moon. In Huntsville, Alabama, NASA established the George C. Marshall Space Flight Center, devoted to the development of large rockets whose sole mission was to lift not weapons of mass destruction, but human and scientific payloads into space.
With Von Braun at the helm of these efforts, the United States developed the Saturn series of ever-larger and more powerful booster rockets, culminating with the gigantic Saturn V.
American TV viewers thrilled to the sight of the July 1969 launch of Apollo 11, the mission to the moon. As the Saturn V lifted off from Florida's Cape Kennedy, with a 500-foot shaft of flame and a rumble like that of an earthquake, Americans knew that three brave men were taking the ride of their lives.
Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins were on their way to the moon. When the lunar lander successfully touched down on the moon's surface, Armstrong radioed to earth: "Houston, Tranquility Base here. The Eagle has landed." America had beaten the Soviet Union to the moon. In the 40 years since, only a handful of Americans, and no one from other countries, have set foot on the moon.
Apollo 11 excited the American people as few other events in the nation's history. Many saw the hand of God in the American triumph as a Christian nation beat the atheistic, communist Soviet Union in a supreme effort of national will and commitment of resources.

Promises fulfilled—now what?

God Almighty keeps His Word, and there can be little doubt that the promises made to Abraham have been fulfilled. The British Commonwealth and the United States became the multitude of nations and the great nation promised in Genesis 35:11 and 48:19. But God also told ancient Israel that the promises could be taken away. Read Deuteronomy 28 and 29 to see what God said would befall His people if they rejected His way and turned their back on Him.
Notice also Leviticus 26:19: "I will break the pride of your power," God warned. At the beginning of the 21st century the United States is still, militarily, the world's leading power. But the nation is bogged down in bloody and costly wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The United States is still leader of the free world, but cannot seem to stop rogue nations like Iran and North Korea from developing nuclear weapons. America wrestles with the problem of militant Islam, and many wonder if the Muslim conquests of the seventh century will be repeated. The nation's law enforcement agencies must constantly guard against a devastating terrorist attack that could come at any time and in any place.

Economically, the United States has been transformed from the world's leading lending nation to its greatest debtor.
And in Europe, an economic bloc is rising whose combined output easily surpasses the United States. In Asia, the ancient nation of China is rising rapidly as another major competing economic force.
Blessings can be given, and blessings can be taken away. America has been richly blessed, enabling great national achievements such as those we've noted. And we could easily name many more.
But it is time for Americans to realize their place in the world, wake up to what is really going on and soberly pay attention to what the Creator says is in store for the nation if its people do not turn their hearts and mend their ways."
For GN, by Mike Kelley. From:


Jay was going to his sister's house with his mother.  Ray and I were taking the day off.

Great, I thought I would try to catch up on some altering and mending with the sewing machine.  The bottom thread had come out of place, and I was tugging on it trying to make it come up to the top.  Then I found out that I had a counter force underneath the sewing cabinet….Prime was playing with the thread!

Just as I got her untangled, the door bell rang.  It was another SPCA foster mom who lives near me to take some pictures of Precious and Pebbles, my orphan kittens.  They are now old enough to have their own web pages on the Montgomery SPCA website and Petfinder.  It also makes it easier for the bookkeeping.  The pictures needed to be in her camera, as it is the one they use for the blown-up pictures for the newspapers.  My pictures lose something when they are sent to the SPCA.   She took a bunch of pictures, and the kittens just played and posed for her.   I took some too.


They sure weigh more than the 6 oz when I got them, when their eyes were hardly open.

 After mending something to make sure I had the sewing machine's tensions right, I was going to start on the batting, undercover and upholstery for the twin bed in the cargo trailer.

It became obvious that there needs to be a bigger work table near my sewing machine.  Maybe Jay will help me get one in here today.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

News: U.S.Debt. Cockpit of a Space Shuttle. Joplin Scam. Walmart Hurts America. Mt Lemmon. Preserve The Battlefields. Chicken Nuggets Recall.

"Dear Mr. President, I heard you say you will not guarantee SS checks if the debt ceiling isn't raised.

Why not stop your pay, your staff, Congress and the Senate to save more money for our country?

Let's hold those paychecks, then see how fast they resolve the debt ceiling crisis !!!!!

Take the money from those who take no risks and reap the benefits!!"


Ever wondered what the cockpit of a space shuttle looks like??


Here is something worth the couple of minutes to view: a 360 panorama of the Space Shuttle Discovery crew cabin flight deck.

This is pretty cool----and maybe the last time we get to see it before it’s stuffed and mounted at the Smithsonian!
ENJOY…… Lighting is from the internal instrument panel lights… 

You can "grab" the photo with your cursor and rotate it to different positions to see the overhead lights and switches.

You can zoom with the scroll wheel.




Joplin Tornado Fake Charities Scam Thousands Of Dollars

Joplin Tornado Charities

Posted: 7/22/11 02:18 PM ET

Two alleged charities set up to help victims of the Joplin, Mo. tornado have never contributed a dime to the relief effort, according to the state's attorney general.

Chris Koster said that injunctions are being sought against Puerto Rican online group Alivio Foundation Inc. and Georgia online radio operator Steven Blood.

From the Joplin Globe:

Koster said Alivio began soliciting donations shortly after the May 22 tornado through a PayPal link on the purported charity's website and through an online donation conduit, Crowdrise. He said both websites claimed that donations would go to St. Peter the Apostle Catholic Church in Joplin and to Catholic Charities of Southern Missouri.

But Koster said both charities report that they haven't received any money from Alivio. The attorney general has frozen $9,700 that he hopes will eventually go to the people of Joplin.

Koster said Blood claimed to help tornado victims by selling T-shirts and setting up benefit concerts, according to the AP. The attorney general said Blood used the funds for his own expenses. Blood contends that he never promised the T-shirt revenues would go to tornado victims and the benefit shows had to be cancelled.

Local station KY3 reports that Koster is investigating some 260 total complaints stemming from possible Joplin tornado scams. From:



We're buying too much stuff made in China.  Another reason why I don't like Walmart:

"Every day, you and I are shooting ourselves in the foot. We're hurting our fellow citizens. We're destroying our economy and our country.
What are we doing? We're buying too much stuff made in China. . . and other far off countries where in some cases people work for slave wages so Wal-Mart and other discounters can shave a few cents or dollars off a product so we will buy from them and not somewhere else.

In his RV Insight column a few weeks ago, Bob Zagami wrote about this. And he got me thinking.
PBS ran a special a few years ago about Wal-Mart's effect on our economy. In one segment, a small U.S. sock manufacturer told how he had been forced, after decades in business, to close his factory, lay off his American employees and start making his socks in Asia to meet the wholesale prices demanded by Wal-Mart. It was that or go out of business. Goodbye American jobs.

I realize that for many people on limited incomes, every dollar counts. If they can buy an imported shirt for $15 that might cost $20 or $25 if made here, they will do it -- and I totally understand. But for those of us who CAN afford to pay a little more by buying a homegrown product (this goes for the USA and Canada), then we should do it. Think about it: buying a product made in our country helps a fellow citizen keep his or her job. And when these Americans have jobs, they pay taxes instead of collecting unemployment or living on welfare.

I am as guilty as anyone of buying foreign-made merchandise. And, heavens knows, sometimes we have no choice because nobody in North America even makes the product anymore (just try to buy an American made television). But I believe we should all try harder to find products made at home. Examine labels before purchasing. Buy American. Or if you live in Canada, buy Canadian."      From:

UPDATE (Sunday, July 23): Here is an online directory of products made in the USA.


And on the same note:

Why That "Made In China" Ball Mount Is KILLING YOU!
Most of the typical ball mounts - like the one shown on the left - are made in China. They only do one thing; pull your trailer.  But any fixed or "static" (non-energy absorbing) towing product will increase your risk of whiplash by 22% if you get hit in the rear -- the most frequent vehicle accident. So how about one that will soften the "crash pulse", reduce whiplash, protect your wife, kids, employees, vehicle and your insurance? How much is your neck really worth? Visit


Vicksburg National Military Park

Click Here to Send Your Comments!

In the hot summer days leading up to July 4, 1863, Gettysburg, Pennsylvania and Vicksburg, Mississippi were scenes of decisive Union victories that brought the Confederacy to its knees. While the war continued through 1865, the Confederacy never recovered from these dual defeats.
Today, these sites are protected as national military parks in the National Park System. Sadly, however, many of the Civil War sites preserved in the National Park System only protect a portion of these battlefields.
This spring, Senator Thad Cochran (R-MS) and Senator Roger Wicker (R-MS) introduced S. 265, which would authorize the National Park Service to acquire approximately 10,000 acres of property significant to the preservation of the historic battlefield sites, and would include core battlefield lands at Port Gibson, Raymond, and Champion Hill, for addition to Vicksburg National Military Park.
Emily JonesTake Action:
Please contact your Senators today and ask them to co-sponsor S. 265. This legislation is scheduled to be heard in the Senate in late July.
Thank you for speaking up for our Civil War heritage.
Sincerely, Emily Jones
Sr. Program Manager, Southeast Region



Coronado National Forest, Mount Lemmon Reopens.

US Government photo

"After nearly a month of closure due to high fire danger, the Coronado National Forest is "open for business" once again. All campgrounds and hiking trails are open to the public. It's a big relief for a lot of the locals, Tucson residents have been roasting in high temperatures, and a visit to Mount Lemmon (at it's elevated location) has been a big relief.
Don't get too crazy, though. The fire danger is listed as "High," which means no campfires, no barbeques, no open flames. If you haven't been able to give up the smoking evil, you can smoke--but only INSIDE your vehicle.
The last few weekends the campgrounds throughout the forest saw a brisk business." From:



Poultry Maker Expands Chicken Recall To Nuggets

GREELEY, Colo. (AP) -- July 29, 2011

"A voluntary recall of thousands of pounds of ready-to-eat chicken has been expanded over concerns that the meat could be contaminated with bacteria that can cause food poisoning.

Colorado-based Pilgrim's Pride on Tuesday announced the recall now includes about 7,000 pounds of Pilgrim's Pride Brand Fully Cooked Chicken Breast Nuggets that were shipped to dozens of Dollar General stores in the following states: West Virginia, Tennessee, Virginia, Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana, Georgia, Florida and Alabama.

The recall began last week over fears that more than five tons of ready-to-eat chicken was potentially tainted by Listeria monocytogenes.

The Center for Disease Control classifies listeriosis as a serious infection that primarily affects older adults, pregnant women, newborns, and adults with weakened immune systems.

Pilgrim's says it is not aware of any reported illnesses.

The newly recalled product was sold in 2-pound bags and carries the best-by date of June 2, 2012, and UPC number 77013 16224. It was produced in the Pilgrim's plant in Mt. Pleasant, Texas. Pilgrim officials say the company is working closely with Dollar General to locate all of the recalled product.

"Food safety is our top priority and we take product recalls very seriously," said Kendra Waldbusser, senior vice president of food safety and quality assurance.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service announced the recall of two of the company's products Thursday.

The first was nearly 400 pounds of Fully-Cooked Grilled Chicken Breast Fillets with Rib Meat made at Pilgrim's plant in Waco, Texas, and distributed through Columbus, Ohio.

Also, recalled was nearly 11,000 pounds of Sweet Georgia Brand Fully-Cooked Breaded White Chicken Nuggets Shaped Patties produced at Pilgrim's plant in Mt. Pleasant and sent to distribution centers in New Jersey and Texas.

The problem was discovered during on-site internal testing at each plant.

Pilgrim's employs approximately 42,000 people and operates chicken processing plants and prepared-foods facilities in 12 U.S. states, Puerto Rico and Mexico.

Consumers may contact Pilgrim's at 1-800-321-1470."



All you have heard about Chicken Nuggets pink goop is not true, but they still have 38 other ingredients, mostly  genetically modified corn, which are not good for you:








I did something that I might regret later.  The orphan kittens have been taught NOT to go through any open doors.  This is for their safety.  But, this time I left the grooming room door open, and called them into the house. 

It took a long time for adventurous Pebbles to venture through the open door, and a lot longer for cautious Precious.  They walked all around the house looking at everything, and even met Bobbiecat and Misty for the first time.  The only other times that they have been in the house, they were in that big dog cage that I set up for them. They had never been loose in there before.  I thought it would be good for their transition to their new homes to see how people live, and to see living room couches, the kitchen, and be in places that they had never been before.  After they had investigated everything, they went back in the grooming room.  So it feels more like 'home' to them.


Ray spent the morning putzing around in his garden, weeding Princess' grave (their black lab), re-potting plants, and raking up pine needles off the grass.  He loves to work with his plants, and keeps the front of my little guest house neat and clean.


As there is a storm named "Don" coming through soon, I won't do any raking until it is over.


But Jay and I wanted to take some precautions just in case we had high winds.  In Ray's attic, we checked the new skylight, and replaced a 2x6 where the old skylight had leaked.  While we were up there, we stapled up the cord that we had added for the bug zapper. Then I loaded up the 'bucket on a string' with a hammer, a couple of drill drivers, and some rubber washer metal roof screws.  Jay took it up the ladder onto Ray's metal roof, checked all the screws, and added some to the new 2x6.  


As it was so muggy, it was another short day.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Do You Want White Bread With That? Cargo Trailer

Well, if these next words were silly forty years ago, imagine what they sounded like in 1933, when Dr. Royal Lee proclaimed them.

"Candy, all white sugar or its products, and white flour and its products such as macaroni, spaghetti, crackers, etc., should be absolutely barred from the diet…”

"You might think these words hail from some natural-nutrition blog or the pages of a low-carb guru’s book. Perhaps they were even uttered by Dr. Robert Atkins himself back in the 1970s, when such advice was considered silly.

By the mid 1920s, it had become obvious to Dr. Lee that nutritional deficiencies were at the root of the so-called “diseases of civilization”—cancer, heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, diabetes, obesity, tooth decay, etc.—all of which appeared in earnest in the human race with the popularization of industrially processed foods.
The White Plague

The ill effects of processed foods were first documented by British doctors working in Africa at the turn of the twentieth century, who noted that cancer and other “modern” diseases arose only in those tribes who’d adopted white sugar, white flour and other processed staples of the British diet. Those who stuck to their traditional diet enjoyed lives virtually free of degenerative disease. Dr. Royal Lee and the Story of Nutrition in America, Part 2
More at:
It is wholly unscientific to state that a well-fed body is more able to resist disease than a less well-fed body.” — Dr. Elmer Nelson"

"Even today people tend to blame microbes for illness, but germs are everywhere, all the time, so what makes some people get sick and others not? As countless studies attest, immunity depends on nutritional status.
"In addition, other studies showed that children with tooth decay not only tended to eat diets lacking in whole foods, they were also more likely to contract infectious diseases such as measles, chicken pox, mumps, scarlet fever, and diphtheria. (Well-nourished children then, as today, tend to resist disease.)"
“Royal Lee was a hundred years ahead of his time,” it’s often been said. Somewhere, he’s still waiting for the world to catch up."

More at:

Now we are not just talking about white bread, it is the other processed foods that are made out of white flour, like Poptarts, white pasta, Eggos, Twinkies, muffins, pizza crusts, crackers, flour tortillas, most cereals, etc.   Anything that says "enriched flour"!

All these items could be made with whole flour, but it is cheaper for the industry to use the left-overs from the real flour.  The resulting white flour is nearly all starch, and now contains a small fraction of the nutrients of the original grain.

The fake flour can elevate your blood pressure, as well as make you more prone to diabetes.
If you want to lower your blood pressure, and even get off your blood pressure meds, start by eliminating processed white flour and sugar from your diet.

In Switzerland, their government has imposed a tax on white bread because of the risks associated with eating white bread. This tax is then passed back to the bakers for them to lower the price of wholemeal bread encouraging people to ditch white bread and choose wholemeal bread.

The Canadian government passed a law prohibiting the “enrichment” of white bread with synthetic vitamins. Bread must contain the original vitamins found in the grain, not imitations.


Whole wheat bread is healthy bread.
"When you shop in the grocery store it is very difficult to find true whole wheat bread. Most are enriched wheat or whole and enriched wheat blends. You can literally spend hours in the bread aisle reading the labels when looking for good bread to buy.

The first and only wheat flour on the label should be whole or 100% wheat flour. That means that anything else other than whole wheat flour or 100% wheat flour is not whole wheat even if is says so on the label. You must look at the ingredient list to be sure because the front of the package is written by the marketing department and it can say wheat and not really be true whole wheat.

There is no such thing as white whole wheat. White whole wheat bread is a blend of whole wheat flour and white flour. Many breads are the same blended flours and then colored with caramel color or molasses so white whole wheat bread just doesn't have the color added.

It is a fact that whole wheat flours are far more nutritious than white flours. They are complete with the natural bran, fiber, vitamins and minerals. Enriched can not compare to the natural wholesome goodness of whole grains in real whole grain bread. Be sure to check your ingredient list to get the best. You deserve it!" 

The truth about white bread.   What is enriched bleached white flour? Wiki FDA -


Learn the dangers of white flour



White Bread vs. Brown Bread

"Most people say that brown bread is healthier than white bread, well lets compare them both and see which one comes out on top.
When referring to brown bread, we are of course talking about bread that is made with whole wheat or wholemeal flour. White bread is made using wheat flour that has been heavily refined and processed.

Round 1 – Flour Power
Wheat flour (used in white bread) has the bran (husk) and germ removed and then bleached. It’s bleached using chemicals such as potassium bromate and benzoyl peroxide, similar to how your clothes would be coloured.

There are still residual bleaching chemicals on the final product that you eat. Extra gluten, salt and sugar are all added to the white flour to help the bread rise and taste better. Then, the nutrients that are taken away from the flour by removing the bran and germ are artificially put back into the flour as is required by law.

Wholemeal flour (used in brown bread) on the other hand doesn’t go through this process and therefore retains all of the natural goodness lost in the removal of bran and isn’t subject to added sugar, salt or gluten."

For the complete article see:

The whiter your bread,  the quicker you're dead! As white bread is already dead.

Now you know the facts:
Choices have consequences…make good choices.


Orange-Glow&-Blackie Jay and I went up in the attic of the guest house, and made a junction box into an outlet. Then we ran a cord to the bug zapper outside, over their little covered sitting area. 
The flies are attracted to the canned cat food that Ray and Shay put out there for Orange Glow and Blackie.  The left over food is picked it up and disposed of as soon as they can, but it still pulls in the flies. I can't stand flies!!

The zapper doesn't zap flies during the day, but it seems to have scared a lot of them off.  We also hung a fly paper near the zapper.    Ray can hear it zapping skeeters in the evenings though.
The junction box was originally for adding wire to install the security light, which is over the front of the guest house. It has a pretty good range, as anyone approaching my front gate makes it turn on, too.

Ray painted the underneath part of the cargo trailer's table.  The sides have already been Formica-ed, and the top is yet to be done.

While Jay was installing some of the 12v. lights in the cargo trailer, Ray and I cut and glued the last piece of foam onto the twin bed foam.  It is now the same height as the dinette/bed cushions, if they want to make both beds into a king size.  Though as twin sheets and king sheet are different lengths, there is an extra little cushion for the head, or tail, of the twin bed, so either size sheets can be used.

Perhaps Tropical Depression Don will help things around here.  We all quit early as it was a too stifle-y and muggy day.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

RV: Safely Jacking TT. Dual Batteries. Toad Charger. Holiday Weekends! Bees. Tiny TT. Tips. Toylok. Pure Power. Shopping. Frijilok.

"On those occasions when you're traveling by car and not with an RV, and you pull into a rest area, you can get a little bit depressed. It happens when you see happy RVers walking in and out of their RVs, or maybe you see them inside having a snack. You stare at them and realize that all you have is a car, which is totally boring compared to an RV."
 Safely Jacking Up a Travel Trailer by The RV Doctor
"I have a Keystone Zeppelin, 24-foot travel trailer with tandem axles. I would like to know the best way to get all four wheels off the ground at the same time to service wheels, besides rolling onto blocks to get one axle at a time. The axle owner's manual says not to jack on the axles. Where is the best place to jack and block for wheel service? ... '

"David, in my shop, if I couldn’t get the entire RV onto a hoist, I would only jack one side of the trailer at a time. Perform the service at each axle on that one side, then move to the other side. I would jack only on the main frame rail and allow the suspension to hang until both tires were clear of the shop floor. I would then lower that side onto appropriate, (read: weight capable), safety jack stands. Then simply repeat the process on the other side. For any RV being raised up with a floor jack, it’s much safer to always have at least two tires (or one side), safely on the ground at all times. Remember, safety first, the time element, second!"

How to Install Dual RV Batteriesthumbnail Dual RV batteries

"Although installing a dual RV battery is not a difficult process to carry out, there are some precautions that must be taken to avoid disaster.
To install dual RV batteries, you must connect the two battery posts together; positive with positive and negative with negative. The wires used to connect the two batteries should end up being of the same length or longer than what was previously installed.     


Power up your toad battery while on the go
"Jerry Campbell from St. Louis, Missouri told me about a kit he installed on the vehicle he tows behind his Coachmen Sportscoach. “Toad Charge” will keep the battery of your towed vehicle charged while it’s being towed behind your motorhome.
This is a great idea because many auxiliary braking systems deplete the battery while towing.
It works by connecting the motorhome chassis electric system to the towed vehicles battery using the motorhome alternator to supply up to 5 amps of charge to the towed vehicles battery.
The kit comes with easy to follow step by step directions.

You get a charge regulator that is installed in the towed vehicles engine compartment and a thermal circuit breaker installed near the motorhome starting battery. It comes with 40 feet of power cable for the motorhome and 10 feet of cable for towed vehicle.

A 7 foot piece can be permanently mounted to the tow bar with connectors at each end for easy hook-up. Jerry used extra prongs on his signal cable to hook it up. The cable has it’s own built in ground wire to minimize voltage drop.
A nice safety feature is a built in blocking diode that prevents reverse current flow in the event the motorhome batteries go dead. This will prevent the towed vehicle battery from discharging to the motorhome allowing you to start your toad which is a good idea if you’re out in the boonies where these kind of things usually happen."
You will find more information on this product at their website here: Toad Charge.


"Trailers usually have a battery (sometimes two) that operates interior lights, blowers, fans and pumps. These batteries are charged when the vehicle engine is running and the trailer is connected to the tow vehicle. They are also charged any time the trailer is plugged into 120 volt power." --From Trailers and Fifth Wheels Made Easy.
Survival technique for the chaos of camping on busy summer weekends

"RVing in summer can be one of the more pleasant aspects of the RV lifestyle, and also one of the more stressful.  As a fulltimer or on an extended vacation you have to camp somewhere on busy weekends.

But if you've ever spent a weekend in a state park campground or a popular family rv resort--if you can even get in without a reservation--you know that it will be crowded, there will be lots of kids having lots of fun (and making lots of noise), excited dogs barking at all the stimulus of being surrounded by strangers, campfire get-togethers with conversations (sometimes just a few feet outside your bedroom window) rising in decibels in relation to the amount of alcohol consumed and sometimes lasting into the wee hours.
And don't expect rangers to come by and quiet things down after the un-enforced 10:00 quiet hour arrives. They don't have enough rangers with the budget cut-backs to even cover daytime shifts, let alone after 5:00 when they all disappear.

Maybe all this doesn't bother you. Great for you. I commend you on your tolerance. But for some of us senior folk, we would rather opt for a quieter, less crowded camping experience. And there is an answer, a better option, and that is to find boondocking spots in the national forests or on other public lands where most of the time there will be far fewer campers and they will be spread out, unlike the sardines-in-a-can layout of most established campgrounds. And in many cases, there will be single, isolated campsites, nestled in a forested grove out of sight of any other campers.

In order to take advantage of these quiet, un-crowded campsites, you have to put out a bit more effort. You can't phone in a reservation to hold your site, there are no comprehensive lists of boondocking locations (or dispersed camping areas as they are called), there is no way to check whether the boondocking campsites are full before you drive in to actually check, and you will have to have learned some boondocking skills before you wander into the woods.
But the rewards are many.

Once you find a good boondocking campsite, and record it on your GPS or notate it in your campground book (don't forget to record explicit directions--your memory may not be as good as you think it is), you don't have to search for it the next time you want to use it. Over time you will have collected several favorite boondocking sites, as well as discovering many that you passed by without staying in--a regular treasure trove of escapes from chaotic state parks and family destination RV resorts."

Motorcycle camping trailer
"Born of passion for travel and a need for economy, we present Solace, the compact pull behind motorcycle camping trailer from The USA Trailer Store. With its standard 8" chrome wheels and aerodynamic cooler holder, your new Solace delivers both style and comfort. With approximately 16 cubic feet2 of usable storage space while in the travel position, this solidly built camper is both a roomy cargo trailer and a spacious camping trailer.
With its ability to expand from 19 square feet in the closed travel position to 72 square feet in the open camping position with an impressive 6'7" ceiling, Solace can truly boast economy of space. With its independent torsion axle suspension, Solace gives you peace of mind."


RVing Tips
Tech Tips from Mark Polk
"Always lock the RV when you're not physically at the campsite. Do not store valuable equipment in outside storage compartments. Believe it or not, a vast majority of RVs use the same exact key as yours for outside storage compartments. If you store valuables, like golf clubs, fishing gear or tools in the outside compartments you may want to have the storage compartment locks changed."

Battery powered LED lights are perfect for RV closets and cabinets oDid you ever want some light in your RV where there is no light -- inside a closet or cabinet perhaps? Wiring a 12 volt or 120 volt light may not be easy or even possible. Here is a simple, effective solution -- an easy-mount LED light that is powered by four AA batteries. These are perfect for at home or in your RV. And they are great during power outages. This video is a segment from Mark's RV Garage. Watch it.

Fire Safety Tip from Mac McCoy
"Even if the flame, or pilot flame on your galley stove goes out, gas continues to flow and could result in an explosion. A stove should never be left unattended or used to heat your coach. Open propane flames release high levels of carbon monoxide."
Fire safety:  Inspect your RV's fire extinguisher . . . and consider purchasing a small one specifically to keep in reach in your kitchen area.  Learn more about Mac and fire safety.

Check and make sure that bees or wasps have not made a nest in your hitch box.  To keep them away, hang a cloth bag with some mothballs in it.
Always double check that your refrigerator is shut tight before hitting the road. If not, you could have a mess on your hands.
On the last day of an RV trip, if you are hooked up to water and sewer, it's a good idea to wash your tables, counters, floor, fridge and other places inside your RV. If you wait until you get home, when you may not be hooked up, your water will likely be limited and you'll end up draining water into a holding tank which you'd probably prefer to stay empty.

"Heartland's optional ToyLok is a unique and simple way to secure outdoor items when you are away from your campsite. ToyLok provides peace of mind by protecting grills, patio furniture, name it. If it belongs to you, keep it safe with ToyLok!"


Pure Power Blue by The RV Doctor

"Since the “Go Green” movement permeated the RV Industry, it's been proven that the use of certain chemicals, including formaldehyde, a common preservative found in RV toilet chemicals, is hazardous to the environment, humans and pets. Just about every company that manufactures these additives now produces a green alternative. OP Products may be the exception since they've only produced "green" additives, avoiding any use of chemicals, from day one. Perfecting upon their development of Pure Power Green, they are now offering what they consider to be the most powerful, easiest to use and most economical RV holding tank additive yet developed, Pure Power Blue, Waste Digester and Odor Eliminator. Pure Power Blue is four times as concentrated as any near competition.

Featuring their proprietary “BioBlast Plus” technology, this new product uses bacteria and enzymes to break down waste naturally and safely. The company states that their biodegradable product will “control odor immediately, even in high heat conditions over 120°F.” In addition, the bacteria and enzymes in their product enhance the sewage and septic systems to which they’re introduced.
Pure Power Blue is available as a liquid in sizes ranging from 4 to 128 ounces. It is also available in convenient, dissolving, single-use pouches, in 6 or 12-pouch packages. The company states that a mere 2 ounces or 1 bio-pouch will treat a 40-gallon tank (an additional dose is recommended for temperatures above 105°F).

When it comes to a bacteria-based holding tank treatment solution, a normal question might be: is it safe? According to OP Products, “The bacteria used in [their] products are non-pathogenic, friendly Bacillus bacteria. These types of bacteria are cultivated from natural sources, therefore they are perfectly safe to use in any cleaning or maintenance situation.”

The Pure Power Blue liquid is a lighter color than some of the traditional products and has a pleasant smell when opened. Simply add 2 ounces of Pure Power Blue to a gallon of water and that’s it. The same for the bio-pouch; one gallon or just enough water to cover the bottom of the tank.
One claim the company makes is that it will break down any 2-ply household toilet tissue, meaning there's no need to use RV-specific, quick-dissolve paper, which of course, is more expensive than store brands. So Chris set out to test that claim.
Here's his report:

The Experiment: I used two clean glass jars, one with plain tap water and the other with a tap water/Pure Power Blue mixture (about ½ ounce of additive in the jar of water). I then added four sheets of store brand, (generic), 2-ply toilet tissue to each jar.

The Results: In a one hour test, the toilet paper in the plain tap water remained as it was when I inserted it. When stirred, it held together perfectly, without deforming or separating at all. However, in the Pure Power Blue solution, the paper had dissolved almost completely, and upon stirring, was nicely broken down and completely shredded. Clearly, complete dissolving would have occurred within a short time, perhaps another hour or two, but even at this point in time, flushing of holding tanks would have been easy and complete."
More at:


After Jay was through with his doctor's appointment, we worked our way back to the north side of town, stopping at a couple of thrift shops along the way. I bought some Gloria Vanderbilt jeans, a bedspread with matching sham, a long extra shelf with legs to go in my fridge to keep smaller items up out of the way, and Jay bought some shirts.  Jay had to pick up a prescription at WM, so I bought some lotion and bath powder there to get them off my list.  At least they weren't made in China, like so many Walmart items.  I used their sphygmomanometer, and my blood pressure was 125/65.

They were the only things that I really needed, but I still managed to buy more items when we stopped at Krogers to use their ATM.  Jay and I split a delectable NY cheesecake, we couldn't resist, as it was half-price.  I cut my half into serving portions, wrapped each section in wax paper, and froze them in an oblong plastic tub.  Now, I can take one portion out every now and then.  It will take me a long time to eat my half. 
As the Baby Spinach was a 'twofer', we each got one.  It is better than lettuce in a salad, as it is more nutritious. (  And it can always be cooked in a recipe when one tires of salad.

We drove 2 extra blocks to stop at the county property tax office to pay an 84 cent balance on my bill to save the $4 online payment charge.  It would have gone up to $1.04 at the end of July, and escalated from there on!

Frijilok-keeps-door-closed Frijilok-up-close The other day we added a Frijilok to the side of the medicine cabinet in the cargo trailer, to keep the door closed.

It easily releases with a thumb on the outside, and snaps locked when the door is closed.

The door opens that way so the mirror can be swung to be used from the sink to the right of it.

It is really for an RV fridge, but they work well on a lot of things, as they are adjustable.


It is still hot, though the temperatures have not been as high, it still feels just as hot due to the humidity in the air. It feels like it is going to rain, but it doesn't happen.   Our rain is constipated, as it is forecast each day.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

H.R.2584 Bill. Chicken Police! Red-headed Woodpecker. Albatross. Pale-headed Brush-Finch. Rufa Red Knot. Cargo Trailer.

For "Winged Wednesday:
Bird Montage

H.R.2584 Bill that is one of the worst assaults on birds and other wildlife ever to come before Congress.

"Tell your Representative Vote "No" on Devastating Environmental Bill

The U.S. House of Representatives will soon begin debate on, H.R. 2584, an environmental spending bill that is one of the worst assaults on birds and other wildlife ever to come before Congress. The bill is loaded with devastating funding cuts and anti-environmental provisions that will wreak havoc on our land, water, air, and wildlife.  Bird conservation programs face some of the steepest cuts:
•    The Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Act, the only federal U.S. grants program specifically dedicated to the conservation of our migrant birds throughout the Americas, will be completely eliminated.
•    State Wildlife Grants, the nation’s core program for preventing birds and wildlife from becoming endangered, has been reduced by over 64%.
•    The North American Wetlands Conservation Act, which provides funding for conservation projects that benefit wetland birds, has been reduced by over 40%.Kirtland's Warbler by Ron Austing
•    The Endangered Species Act would be effectively gutted by preventing the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service from spending any money to list a new species or designate Critical Habitat that is vital to endangered species’ survival.
•    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency would be prohibited from implementing any measures to protect endangered species from pesticides, spelling disaster for species that are already on the brink of extinction due to pesticides and other threats."

Kirtland's Warbler by Ron Austing

"Please ACT NOW! Tell your Representative to prevent these funding cuts and anti-environmental provisions and to vote NO on H.R. 2584.
We have made it easy for you to take action - simply click on the link below, enter your zip code, and then send the automatically generated email to your Representatives by asking them to vote against these funding cuts and anti-environmental provisions and to vote NO on the final passage of H.R. 2584.
For additional impact, take a little extra time to add some thoughts of your own to the text we have provided.  For maximum impact, please call your Representatives (instructions found here)."

Anne Law
Deputy Director of Conservation Advocacy

Chicken Police.


Red-headed Woodpecker
Red-headed Woodpecker by Greg Lavaty

"The striking Red-headed Woodpecker is most often found in savanna-like areas of widely scattered trees with grassy understories. It especially favors oak savannas, beech woods, river bottoms, and groves of dead and dying trees, which provide nesting, roosting, and foraging sites.
This species is highly omnivorous, consuming acorns, seeds, fruit, and insects, bird eggs and nestlings, and even small rodents. It is one of only four woodpecker species known to store food, caching future meals under bark or shingles, in wood crevices, or in fence posts.

The Red-headed Woodpecker is declining over much of its range, mainly due to lack of suitable habitat. Savanna-like habitats have become increasingly rare due to decades of fire suppression, and in places where they do occur, such as woodlots and parks, habitat is made less than ideal by removal of snags (dead trees), since those can sometimes pose a human hazard.
Loss of habitat continues to be the biggest threat to this colorful woodpecker.  Woodland restoration efforts should focus on increasing suitable habitat, such as projects underway in the Central Hardwoods Joint Venture."
Support ABC efforts to save this and other WatchList bird species!

First Short-tailed Albatross Born In U.S. Fledges
Short-tailed Albatross, USFWSA Short-tailed Albatross chick has successfully fledged on an island in the Hawaiian archipelago, marking the first time this endangered species has ever been known to breed successfully outside of Japan.
Read the full story here


Axis Deer on Big Island, Hawaii A New Threat to Native Birds, Agriculture, Natural Resources
Axis Deer, Wikipedia Commons"A coalition of resource managers on Hawai‘i have confirmed the presence of a new threat to the island’s biodiversity – introduced axis deer – in the areas of Kohala, Ka‘u, Kona, and Mauna Kea.
“These new deer on the Big Island are apparently the result of a deliberate inter-island introduction. We need to do a better job of public education about the impacts of alien species, especially to Hawai‘i’s native birds and plants.  Removing introduced species can be both terribly costly and very inefficient.” "
Read the full story here


Efforts to Save Bird Once Thought Extinct Rewarded by Lowering of Species' Threat Status
Pale-headed Brush Finch by A. Sornoza"One of the world’s rarest birds passed a key milestone: the Pale-headed Brush-Finch has been downlisted from Critically Endangered to Endangered on the IUCN Red List of globally threatened birds after of more than a decade of sustained conservation action.
The Pale-headed Brush-Finch has likely always been a rare bird with a tiny range, restricted to two arid rainshadow valleys in the Andes of southern Ecuador. In the late 1960s, however, agriculture began to destroy its limited habitat, and the species was not seen for more than 30 years."
Read the full story here


Rufa Red Knot Wintering Population Drops by More than 5,000, Accelerating Slide to Extinction
Red Knot by Eleanor Briccetti"Scientists released a report announcing that a decrease of at least 5,000 rufa Red Knots was observed at key wintering grounds in Tierra del Fuego, Chile from the previous year. Scientists reported population counts of wintering knots in other locations declined as well. The estimated current total population of the migratory shorebird is now unlikely to be more than 25,000.
The decline in Red Knot numbers elevates the importance of implementing stronger protections at Delaware Bay, a key U.S. stopover where migrating knots depend on an abundant supply of horseshoe crab eggs to fuel the final leg of their migration to breeding grounds in the Canadian Arctic."

Read the full story here



Ray did some more prep work on the outside front of the cargo trailer.  It is now primed and ready for the final paint.


Misty enjoyed being driven down to Jay's again when I went to pick him up.  She likes to wander around on the vacant lot across from their place, as there are very few things for her to bump into.  She has a cataract in her left eye, and glaucoma in the right.  She shows confidence walking in places that she knows, and has a spring in her step.   As I am her "Seeing Eye Person", she is guided on a leash so she won't get hurt bumping into the one tree or the prickly bush on the corner.  Anyway, dogs are supposed to be leashed in this subdivision.

Jay and I went up to my attic and found another sheet of bed foam, cut it to fit, and glued it onto the bed foam for the twin bed in the cargo trailer.  The twin bed foam has to be built up to the same height as the dinette/bed cushions, in case they want to make the two twins into one big king bed.  When Ray and I cut the other one, we also washed it, so it can't be glued yet.   It dripped outside all night, but we moved it to finish drying over some boards in the rafters in the workshop in case it rained.   Fat Chance!!   Rain is forecast, and it feels really muggy like it wants to rain, but it just doesn't happen, not here anyway.

Then Jay and I glued the little extra pieces on the sides of the dinette cushions, so they are ready to be covered. The lady who used to make beautiful cushion covers for me passed away, so unless I can find someone else, I will have to do it myself.  Mine won't look as good!

But it will have to wait, as I am taking Jay to the doctor early today.