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Gender: Do not display
Hometown: Leon County, Florida
Member since: Tue Feb 12, 2008, 10:18 PM
Number of posts: 21,419

Journal Archives

Why in some countries vaccines from the West are unpopular

I'm watching on Smithsonian "The Rise of the Killer Virus" about the search for where AIDS began. Something I had nearly forgotten - at one point blame was laid for introducing the virus in the US on a flight attendant from Canada who supposedly had casual sex in a gay bath house. Another claim was that it came from polio vaccines that were based on primate blood infected with AIDS that had not been screened out. The program said these claims came from "right wing smears" but that those claims still linger.

If people think that vaccines from Western sources could be infected with a dreaded disease (AIDS) even if the disease that the vaccine is supposed to prevent is horrible (polio), it's understandable that they would refuse to be vaccinated.

The program went on to the search for pathology samples from the 1960s in African countries, some of which have shown incidents of AIDS long before it emerged in Europe and America. They postulate that the original transmission of an AIDS like disease in primates made the jump to humans in a remote area of the Congo in about 1908.


At the end they attribute the spread of AIDS from a primate borne disease to a human one to colonial exploitation. Forced labor to take lumber out of the Congo caused an epidemic of sleeping sickness. While treating that illness, medical personnel used unsterilized needles, spreading other diseases including AIDS to thousands more people.

The exploitation of resources is still occurring. People are still being forced to work the lumber camps - maybe by economics rather than physical force but it is still forced - and without a reliable source of food, they are consuming bush meats, including primates, and being exposed to AIDS - and other diseases - as they do so.

Looking for World War II submariners

My father served on the USS Spot (SS-413) in World War II. As a result of an incident in which he was part of a boarding party on a crippled Japanese freighter he received the Navy and Marine Medal. We have one photo of Admiral Nimitz awarding him the medal, but no other pictures of the ceremony.

Since Dad died in August 2013, my sister and Mom have been going through the house to sort out stuff. The other day they found a box with all sorts of treasures - Mom's dog tags (she was a Navy Nurse), Dad's report cards, the certificates for his Boy Scout medals, etal.

One of the oddest things they found were four envelopes with photos from the Nimitz ceremony - each envelope had a different person's name, a note of their rank and rating and "Spot." The pictures in each envelope are presumably of the man whose name is on the outside. And of course, there are no other copies or views of Dad getting his medal. My sister wants me to locate the families of those men to give them the photos.

The names as deciphered by my sister are:
J. H. Strong, RM1c
L. M. Small Jr, FC2c
R. R. Granes, GM1c
Lt. A. H. Clark

I've located obituaries for two of the men - one actually lists him as serving on the Spot - and found contact information for children listed. So far, I've left a message for one of the families. The other lives in Idaho so I'm waiting until a little later to try to call.

On Fold3.com in the War Diaries for the USS Spot I found the page where Commander Post listed the medal recipients of the boarding party. As listed in his report they were:
Lieutenant A. H. Clark, Jr., USN
Lieutenant (jg) O. H. Wright, USNR (my Dad)
Graves, Robert R., GM1c
Walters, Carl C., QM1c
Stamp, Raymond F., MoMM1c
Strong, Joseph H., RM1c
Fish, Burton, S1c (GM)

But I've got some mysteries. First, there is no L. M. Small Jr in the list of medal recipients. In fact there is not only no L. M. Small Jr listed in the Muster Rolls for the USS Spot, there isn't one in the Navy as far as I can find. I've asked my sister to check if it could be some other name, apparently the hand writing is not very clear on the envelopes. As you can see from the two lists, she read "Graves" as "Granes" so an incorrect reading is possible. But in looking at the Muster lists I can't see any other name that could be mistaken for "L. M. Small" and there certainly wasn't any in the boarding party.

Although A. H. Clark clearly served on the USS Spot - not only did he receive the Navy and Marine Medal, he also received a Silver Star and he's listed by name on other reports - he is never listed on the Muster Rolls for the USS Spot. My husband theorizes that he may have been an intelligence officer. A previous posting was on the USS Moosehead:
Moosehead carried out her most important service as an at-sea platform for training officers and men of Combat Information Center crews. She carried the latest radar and sonar equipment as well as a CIC classroom and berthing facilities. In July 1943 she began training CIC crews of escort carriers. During the next two and a half years she trained CIC teams for all escort carriers of the Casablanca and Commencement Bay classes. Early in 1944 she broadened the scope of her training to include CIC teams from APA’s, AKA’s, DE’s, AD’s, and PCE’s. In addition, she served as a test and evaluation ship for experimental rockets, radar equipment, and radio jamming devices.

(Anyone wishing to assist in this - This is neither the LtCmdr Albert Hobbs Clark who was lost on the USS Trout nor his son.)

I did find A. H. Clark' obituary and am attempting to contact his family, same for J. H. Strong.

My last problem is Robert R. Graves. I found his Navy history all the way through to 4 May 1945 when he was transferred to COMSUBDIV 202 for duty. Nothing after that. No obituary or entry on FindAGrave that could be him. No indication of a family. The best clue is that he enlisted 17 Oct 1939 in Little Rock, Arkansas. Unfortunately, that means no 1940 US Census listing that might have provided family information. There are several Robert R. Graves in the 1930 US Census in that part of the country that could be him, but there is no way to narrow it down.

Any help anyone can give me on finding the last two men - Robert R. Graves and the elusive L.M. Small - would be wonderful! All we want to do is to get the photos of them from 1945 to their families. If we cannot locate family members, I'll suggest to my sister that we give them to the Florida State University Institute on World War II here in Tallahassee: http://ww2.fsu.edu/

CNN's Chris Cuomo is having a verbal dust up with Judge Moore from Alabama

On same sex marriage. It's been going on for a good ten minutes or more and Cuomo is showing by his questions how ignorant and prejudiced Judge Moore is. No video - the interview just ended. I have to leave the TV & computer now, but will look for video links later.

It wasn't as much fun as David Schuster and Tamron Hall versus the birther nut woman, but it was good.

My favorite commercial EVER - it is so cute! And the music isn't bad, either

I think Android has won me for life.

Deleting History (and Land) in South Florida: Adam Putnam and the Great Destroyers

Weekend Edition February 6-8, 2015
Adam Putnam and the Great Destroyers
Deleting History (and Land) in South Florida


Fox News Florida branch, Sunshine State News, printed recently, “Putnam on Water Policy: Get Priorities Right From First, Then Spend Accordingly” (January 23, 2015). Some interpretation is needed for readers inclined to take the faux news source literally.

Adam Putnam is the telegenic, multimillionaire farmer and two-term Secretary of Agriculture for Florida. We last observed Secretary Putnam paving the way for the Cabinet to green light Florida Power & Light’s two new nuclear plants at Turkey Point.

So, it bears paying attention when Sunshine/ Fox surrogate reports what Putnam said to the Florida Legislature about water policy.

“Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam on Thursday urged members of the House State Affairs Committee – the lawmakers charged with increasing spending on water sources and sensitive lands – to first create ‘an overarching, already prioritized (water) policy’ that will keep the state on the right course for land purchase in good times and bad.”

More: http://www.counterpunch.org/2015/02/06/deleting-history-and-land-in-south-florida/

Interesting article on how Adam Putnam is trying to erase the history of planning water usage and public land acquisition to set up new criteria that favors big business - especially big sugar.

One of the intriguing points raised is that Putnam may be positioning himself for a run for governor in the future. We need to stay aware of what he is doing.

Watching "Night Will Fall" - how can people do these things?

This is the "lost" documentary made by Alfred Hitchcock and Sidney Berstein about German concentration camps. It includes actual footage from British, American and Soviet cameramen who were with the troops when the camps were taken from the Nazis.

Words cannot express the emotion.

DU bread makers - I need advice on my bread

I've made bread off and on for decades. With one thing or another until a few weeks ago it's been a few years since I made bread. The problem I am having is that my bread is very crumbly. I'm using the same recipe I developed on my own ages ago but my husband swears my bread used to hold together better.

I'm wondering if I should knead the bread longer - maybe the gluten is not getting well enough developed? I suspect I am not being as patient with it as I used to be and just not letting it get far enough along even if the dough feels right. Sometimes I have mixed the grain, whole grain flour and gluten with the water and let it soak for an hour in the pre-warmed oven - maybe I should try that and see if that helps the gluten develop more?

My basic recipe:

Generic Multigrain Bread

Preheat oven to about 120-140 degrees. Turn on oven light to keep warm.

1/2 - 1 cup of cereal (Bob's Red Mill 7 or 10 grain cereal or oatmeal)
1 cup boiling water
Mix and let soak for 10 minutes.

1/2 cup warm water
1/4 cup oil
1/3 cup honey
2 tablespoons gluten
2-3 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
Mix with KitchenAid hook until well blended and dough strings from sides of bowl.

Gradually add:
1 1/2 cups bread flour (or substitute some 1/2 cup oat flour for some of bread flour) or enough that the dough comes together.
Mix until dough comes together. Let mixer continue for 3-4 minutes. Drizzle a little oil down sides of bowl as the mixer is going. Remove hook from dough and turn over to coal with oil. Cover and put in warmed oven to rise until doubled - about 1 hour 15 minutes to 1 hour 30 minutes.

Turn out dough on lightly floured surface. Shape into loaf and put in greased pan. Cover with cloth and return to warmed oven for 1 hour to 1 hour 30 minutes. Remove cloth; leaving loaf in oven turn oven to 340 F and bake for 40 minutes. (My oven is a convection oven - your temperature and time may vary.)

Makes on 12" x 4" x 4" loaf.

National Geographic Wild is bringing back FISH BOWL! It's Fish Bowl II!




Fish Bowl even has a feline side:

Here is their thank you for last year:

Has anyone heard of the "21st Century Dems"?

I got a call from them the other night. They claim to be a progressive movement:
About Us
Our Mission

Since 1985, the mission of 21st Century Democrats has revolved around training progressives and building a network of populist Democrats who stand up for America’s working families.

We focus particular attention on Democratic leaders who can move up to higher office at every level and who represent the tradition of Democrats like Jim Hightower, Tom Harkin, Barbara Boxer, Raul Grijalva, John Lewis, Al Gore and Paul Wellstone. We support progressive Democratic leaders who will shape the direction of the Democratic Party and enact public policy that transforms this country to a just, fair and equal society for all.

Our Vision and Values

We are committed to leading the way toward a bold and progressive agenda that will improve the quality of life for all Americans. Our goal is to elect genuinely progressive Democrats who believe government has a positive role to play in our country and will fight to enact public policy that reflects the core values of equality, opportunity, compassion, justice and fairness that 21st Century Democrats believes in, stands up for, and works toward on a daily basis.

Our Strategies
Cultivating Leadership at Every Level

We educate young people who have shown a strong interest in politics and idealism about the future in grassroots organizing and field work. We have trained thousands of high school and college students, college graduates, and party activists, placing hundreds of them in their first political jobs in support of the progressive leaders we endorse. These results speak for themselves as many alumni have gone on to manage higher profile campaigns, become leaders in the progressive community, or even get elected as officials themselves.

Their front page features Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, Bill de Blasio, Al Franken, Jeff Markey, and more people I read favorable things about here.

According to Wikipedia, they were started by "Senator Tom Harkin, commentator Jim Hightower and Congressman Lane Evans to help elect "progressive" or "populist" candidates." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/21st_Century_Democrats

21st Century Democrats started out relatively small but has quietly grown in size and significance in the last few election cycles." In 2004 election cycle, according to the Political Money Line, it was the 13th largest Political Action Committee (PAC) in the United States raising nearly $7 Million. Among progressive ideological PACs, it ranked fourth behind America Coming Together, EMILY's List, and MoveOn.org.

Unlike traditional PACs, 21st Century Democrats focuses on recruiting, training, and hiring field organizers to organize grassroots campaigns on behalf of candidates for local offices, statewide office, and even targeted presidential swing states. The group has ties to Democracy for America, which grew out of Howard Dean's presidential campaign.

I'm curious because I like the sound of the organization but I had not heard of it until they called me asking for donations. I'd love to know more about them, especially first person experiences!

Just heard a great horned owl calling

Loud enough to hear over the TV, computer and other noises in the house with the windows closed! When I stuck my head outside, it was probably down in the woods, nearly a quarter of a mile from the house, but the sound carries.

This is exciting since it's been at least 20 years since I have heard (or seen) a great horned owl here on the farm!

It was very low pitched, very much like in the middle clip on this page:
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