Domestic Terrorism


Ooh, there’s a nice light topic eh?

The thing is, I was formulating stuff all week as I watched events of the last couple of weeks unfold. 3 acts of domestic terrorism IMHO. The murder of Dr Tiller, the murder of the soldier at the recruiting office, and now the murder of the guard at the Holocaust Museum. All three murders motivated strictly by politics in one form or another. All 3 perpetrators are extremists withing their movements for sure, just by virtue of the fact that they crossed that line from hateful speech to murderous acts. But why is it that there is this upsurge? And, as I tweeted earlier, wasn’t there a DHS report warning of exactly these types of acts released just a few weeks ago? A report which was panned loudly by some very influential media voices? So loudly in fact, that Secretary Napolitano (who did not even commission the report, the bulk of the work being done under the prior administration), had to apologize for it and tell her staff at DHS to go back to drawing board?I believe it specifically highlighted anti-Semitic and ant-abortion violation potentially surging. Hmmm.

But really, WHY? What is it about right now that has brought us to these back to back to back acts of terrorism? For they ARE terrorism are they not? Specifically the Tiller murder where the intent was to stop people from going about their every day lives doing a job which is, at this point, perfectly legal. A terrorist act which *worked* because it resulted in the closure of the Tiller clinic. No matter how you fall in the abortion debate, I would hope that the idea that these people were forced to close a business and lose jobs and, hello, lose their life, was done through violence and intimidation vs through peace democratic means. This is America, correct?

And then I read this piece in the New York Times. Paul Krugman normally writes about the economy, and yet he seems to have been thinking along the same lines as me this week. Why?

UPDATE: Now I will add a link to Eugene Robinson from the Washington Post this morning writing in a similar vein “Feeding the Lone Wolves” because he says it oh so well too.

Here’s a link to the full piece which I wish I could just re-print here and comment on paragraph by paragraph but that would get me into all sorts of copyrighting trouble so I wont 🙂  But I will highlight his basic premise because it is one I agree with and which I’ve written about here and there before :

Today, as in the early years of the Clinton administration but to an even greater extent, right-wing extremism is being systematically fed by the conservative media and political establishment.

Exactly. We all know who the culprits are. There is one particular cable TV station and a few very influential radio and tv commentators who lead this charge in the media. The scary thing is, that these are not people on the media ‘fringe’. They are main stream. Huge – often #1 in ratings for some shows in some time slots. They have made it OK to call our President anti-American, or a Muslim, or question the authenticity of his birth certificate. They repeat multiple times titles like “Tiller the baby killer”. They use violent rhetoric or incite fear enough that it becomes acceptable. Then elected politicians pick up on it and repeat it. Or applaud it. Krugman cites many such examples and yet I could think of even more he did not mention. Shoot, he completed passed over Congresswoman Michelle Bachman of Minnesota who has dozens of examples of extremist rhetoric to her credit! I swear she’s pushing to be the female Rush when she is done in DC!
Krugman concludes with this:

What will the consequences be? Nobody knows, of course, although the analysts at Homeland Security fretted that things may turn out even worse than in the 1990s — that thanks, in part, to the election of an African-American president, “the threat posed by lone wolves and small terrorist cells is more pronounced than in past years.”

And that’s a threat to take seriously. Yes, the worst terrorist attack in our history was perpetrated by a foreign conspiracy. But the second worst, the Oklahoma City bombing, was perpetrated by an all-American lunatic. Politicians and media organizations wind up such people at their, and our, peril.

No, these people are not directly responsible for the actions of the lunatics. Of course not. But as he says, we ignore the connection at our own peril. There is an atmosphere created here which is conducive to those folks who are just a toenail away from crossing that line.

Now, I am not saying that the left is perfect by a LONG SHOT. But, please, find me a main stream, left leaning pundit/media type/politician with equal influence to the folks on the right listed in Krugman’s piece. Notice I am not saying – find me anybody – I am saying find me an equally powerful, influential voice from the left – who speaks in the same way as the Fox folks, Rush, etc. Also take note of just how many examples from the right we can find. It’s not one loud voice folks – it’s many.

Dissent is essential in our democracy. Intelligent discourse is mandatory. A free and independent media would be so damn wonderful to have. But this ugly, violent, hateful rhetoric has got to stop. C’mon conservatives! Be *smarter* than that! Do you really think you are going to move the country back to the right by bullying them? Ok, I know it worked in the 90s, but AGAIN? Really? That’s all you have? No, I know it’s not, but until enough of you (like the couple of Fox news reporters who Krugman pointed out), push back on this methodology, the voices of reason wont be heard.

This is America. We do not support terrorism – ANYWHERE – so please just stop supporting people who feed into this extremism and allow it to become acceptable.

Please empty the contents of your purse….


This totally for fun topic is stolen from Brandy. If you followed my pre-debate twitters (you know, the ones that were not coming in at a 1 per minute clip!) then you saw my announcement that I bought a purse at the drug store. Yep, that’s how I roll folks! Actually, that is so *opposite* of me because the ONE thing that I have splurged on for myself over the years is really nice purses. But I also have not bought one in almost 3 years. I was at Longs at lunch getting some heartburn meds (oh yeah, keeping with the high class topics here!) when I drifted to the front of the store and saw them. The perfect travel purses! Big, single pocket purses but with enough bling and fun color to keep me interested. Oh, plus little pockets for keys, meds and cell phone. Love that. So anyway, here is my new Drug Store Purse:

And now, the fun part, the contents at this very moment:

Starting from the bottom left corner and up that column are the contents of my zipper inside pocket: Lactaid, Claritin D and caffiene tablets (easier on my stomach in a pinch than coffee or soda + no sugar drop), business card holder, security card for work and key to safe deposit box. Top center is my cosmetic mini purse which holds the lipstick and lip balm below it as well as a bottle of pain meds + the gum pack. Hand lotion, two pens and a paper clip (who knows?), massive check book wallet, beloved blackberry and then car/house key combo. Oh, and the bottle of nail polish next to the lip sticks. Left over from getting my nails done yesterday (I always bring in my own).

What’s missing that one would normally see? Sunglasses – I keep those in my car at all times since that is the place I am most likely to need them. Larger bundle of keys which I keep off the car key on the advice of the gal who does my nails – something about being bad for the ignition? I don’t know but I do know that I prefer carrying just these two and I keep the rest in the car since I mostly use it for the PO box key for the baseball club anyway.

That’s actually a pretty clean purse tonight! At the end of a weekend of sports with the boy it could easily have contained a headband and or scrunchy or two, sunscreen, noise maker, napkins, camera and perhaps even a ball cap stuffed in there. Actually, I can promise you all of the above now that I have that larger bag! Perhaps even am Oprah or San Diego magazine just to pass the time at practice or warm ups 🙂

Shapes and colors


I recently re-arranged my coffee table so that it is aligned with my over sized leather chair vs the larger sofa. The height ends up being better for the laptop and it opened up floor space for Wii use 🙂 What it also did was give me a different view of the house. And I started to take note again of really cool angles and wall shapes in the house. It’s an early 80s So Cal tract home with the then-typical use of cathedral ceilings to give the feeling of spaciousness. But there are also some really uniquely shaped walls which were completely hidden when every last corner was stark white. I lived in that vast whiteness for a few months before I started painting. My goal was to use color very boldly (hey, it was 2003 and I was your typical Trading Spaces addict!), and to use that color to bring out those fun shapes. Make this boring tract home look funky and different with nothing more than paint. Five years later, I still love looking at the results. So here is part 1 of a collage of wall angles and colors. Thought I would share since many of the newer readers have not seen the fun I had. I’ll come back later with some more traditional photos of my favorite spaces with furniture etc. I don’t consider myself an artist or a photographer or a creative personality at all, but when it came to creating my personal living space, I did tap into something that had certainly been suppressed after 15 years of renting and living in basic neutral tones!

Middle School begins


Heading out to walk to school. He had to get there at 7:45 to pick up his schedule. The rest of the time first bell is not until 8:25 so we can relax a little more. Sweet Prince told me he remembers being so nervous the night before school started, especially at this age. I think SportsBoy was a bit nervous because he took about 5 bites of his cereal and then said he wasn’t all that hungry 🙂 He did sleep though thanks to the Saturday sleep over when he essentially did not sleep! He was wiped out when he went to bed last night. Sheer brilliance on the part of the school IMHO – today is also picture day! The kids are there early, in their new clothes (except for mine of course!) and excited about the new year. Yes, I really did deprive my child of new school clothes. No reason to – he doesn’t grow! We cleaned out his clothes and he still has plenty to start out the year that fits. Plus, he’s a boy. Thank heavens.

We walked up, met his best friend out front, and they went in and got their schedules. No classes together, but at least they didn’t seem too bummed about that. They were more concerned about getting out the map of the campus and figuring out how to get to their first period classes! I left them there with instructions to SB to text me when he starts walking home and then to call me at work when he gets there.

While I was waiting for the boys to come out with their schedules, I watched the wave of 1400 kids troop in and out of the auditorium. Girls squeeled as they greated each other with exaggerated hugs. Boys huddled over here in their own much quieter huddle trying to look cool and confident. Oh my! One 8th grade boy was 6 feet tall! Boys with crackly voices. Girls with makeup and…boobs!! Ack! Cell phones flipping open with flair as they tried to find each other. (the rule is they go off at first bell and can come back on at last bell and any found ‘on’ during the day will be confiscated so the kids use them like mad until that first bell obviously.) A very different scene from the last 7 years.  OTOH, I laughed out loud as I watched the assistant principle standing at the drop off line, waving his arm and yelling “PULL FORWARD! PULL FORWARD!” as one minivan stubbornly ignored him and stopped several car lenghts short to drop off their load of kids. He just shook his head and I laughed and told him how I had done that last year at the elementary school and that it was clear some parents NEVER learn!! He said that morning drop off is his most frustrating part of the day which when you consider he deals with these 1400 middle schoolers…well…that’s just pathetic! When our generation wonders why “kids these days” have a sense of entitlement – look in the mirror parents, look in that mirror.

Move 2008 week 34 + The Big Sleepover


Quick stats: 30 mins aerobics 5 days of the week + 5 toning/weight routines. All soreness attributed to Wii use has dissipated so hopefully those new muscle groups are getting used to being put to the test!

The Big Sleepover:

So yesterday was the first Saturday of many over the next 3 months that will be dominated by Pop Warner. We met the team at the high school at 1:00 and caravaned off to our favorite place – Temecula – for weigh in certifcation. This is done to make sure the players are all within the approved weight range for their divisions. As with last year, we had a few bigger boys who were working hard to get themselves down to the maximum and they all made it! Phew. First hurdle of the season passed. It is then our team’s rite of passage to head over to Texas Lil’s for ribs to celebrate. Good food and company and a toast to the start of the season and things were rolling along. Somehow, as we all gathered out in the parking lot to make sure the kids who had carpooled over were properly covered for the trip back home, the notion of a massive sleepover to blow out the last weekend of summer came about. A head count of 14 boys was taken and the moms’ eyes all widened and we knew the host family would need help. The team mom is the hostesses best friend (and was the instigator of this plan) so she offered to stay the night with them. I offered to stay up until bed time and there you had it. All sanity had been set aside and literally half the team roster was going to sleep (hah!) over at one house! One hour later we are sitting in the backyard as the boys play basketball:

The plan was to wear them out since they had spent most of the day riding in a car or eating. So after basketball they moved on to the very awesome pool:

Notice the dog in the photo – he was having a blast running alongside the pool catching water splashes. He never barked, just ran up and down the edge keeping an eye on things. He had also ‘refereed’ the basketball and by the time we went inside to have the boys shower and dry off after the pool, he was passed OUT in the hallway. He had not seen that much activity ever at his house and he was not ready for it 🙂

We ordered pizzas and the boys settled long enough to scarf those down (apologize for the poor quality, but this is me fudging around with my camera settings and blowing it!)

I chose this photo because you can see the hostess mom and the team mom (on the right) giving the boys instructions/rules for the rest of the night. The last item on the wear-the-boys out agenda was a night hike. At 9:30 we set out with flashlights and sticks – because Team Mom had warned the boys about snakes and coyotes and other creatures of the night. I brought up the rear with the most powerful light and kept counting heads. Naturally a few boys decided to hide and jump out periodically but I managed to catch them doing it each time so I knew where they were. On one part of the trail was a footbridge over a dry creek bed and I saw a couple boys go hide under it up ahead so I told the boys who were trailing behind with me and one of them threw a tennis ball we had found so that it landed right in the bushes next to the ones hiding. Oh boy did they squeal and run out from under there fast!! Turned the tables on those bush jumpers. The hike lasted over an hour and really was a hoot. A definite team building experience.I knew they would be in for the night at that point so I left and got home around 11:30 just exhausted! But, that was nothing compared to the moms still there. I guess the boys played video games until midnight and then they put in a movie because Team Mom rightly predicted that they would start nodding off during that. Apparently my son was the only one up all the way to the end! So he had about 3-4 hours sleep 😉 When I got there to pick him up this morning, those poor moms looked beat and even Sportboy looked wiped out. All in all, a very fun way to end the summer.



I have no problem failing this test. Rambling Mom is the model of a 1930s housewife compared to me!


As a 1930s wife, I am
Very Poor (Failure)

Take the test!

Of course I wear pajamas instead of a nightgown AND cook in said pajamas. And no, I don’t sew on buttons or repair holes in socks. Also don’t wear curlers to bed or…well…you get the picture!