Friday, June 30, 2006


As of today, President Bush has added "signing statements" to about 750 pieces of legislation passed in the House and Senate. The text of each and every one can be found at (thanks to Tom Harper for the link, check out his weblog "Who Hijacked Our Country?" - see my links section.)

In referring to specific provisions which could limit the President's powers, a phrase he commonly uses throughout the signing statements is "The executive branch shall construe such provisions in a manner consistent with the constitutional authority of the President to supervise the unitary executive branch and to recommend for congressional consideration such measures as the President shall judge necessary and expedient. " This seems like little more than a way to say "Screw all you guys in the House and in the Senate, I can do whatever I want."

After reading about twenty of his "signing statements", I figured out the gist. I have one of my own:

This reader shall construe the President's signing statements as an attempt by the executive branch to create conditions which allow the President to exceed his constitutional authority to supervise the unitary executive branch and to recommend for the consideration of the Congress any measures he judges necessary and expedient.

Bush is an anus. We Democrats REALLY NEED TO GET BUSY.

Sunday, June 25, 2006


More briefness.

Dad is doing well in recuperating from having the defibrillator installed, and thankfully the thing hasn't gone off yet. When it does, he will probably feel like he is getting kicked in the chest by a mule. His condition mostly remains unchanged.

One of my very best friends, Mike, who was the best man at Kit and my wedding and who I have known for 37 years, had open heart surgery Friday morning. He had been having pains in his chest and he thought it was his stomach causing the trouble, but when his doctor had him take a stress test, a blockage was detected. Mike went to Boise to see the doctors there, and I'm not sure if he had been told he was going to need a stint, but once the doctors in Boise saw him... it was decided he needed a double bypass.

My 11-year-old niece Megan (from Emmett, ID, near Boise) fell off a running horse a few days ago and broke her elbow and her pelvis. She also had a concussion, with some nasty bruises and abrasions on her head.

Yesterday, Kit and the girls and I took a trip to Boise to visit first Megan and then Mike, and to take some get-well gifts to both. They both seem to be doing well in their recoveries. Megan won't be able to bear weight on her right leg or use her left arm for a few weeks, and Mike will be in the hospital for another week before his older brother Rick brings him back to La Grande. He will not be able to use his arms much for about a month, and won't be able to drive for a while. Rick will stay with him here in LG for about a month, and then some other friends and I will be helping him out. He should be able to return to work by late September or early October if all goes well.

I'm at my parents' house, using Dad's computer. Ours is still in the shop, and I'm not expecting it back until Monday at the earliest, Wednesday at the latest.

There were some mundane political rantings here but I got rid of them. The other stuff above is far more important.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006


... but I will be gone from the computer for a few more days.

I saved all the stuff on it that was worth saving, and I'm taking it in to have it wiped clean in about an hour. With luck I will have it back by Friday, and we will be back to having things working the way they should.

Dad's surgery went fine. He had his pacemaker removed, and it was replaced with another one that also has a defibrillator. The problem is that every time he has to go to the hospital he comes back a bit weaker, and now he is weaker and more wobbly than ever. It is getting to the point where he requires constant care, and Kit and Mom and I are making do, hoping that we can keep him out of the local nursing homes.

See y'all later this week!

Sunday, June 18, 2006


Kit and I are back from a birdwatching trip to Arizona. We had been planning it for 6 or 7 months, so decided to go anyway. We got my parents set up with some good help, and they did o.k. while we were gone. We saw lots of great birds, lots of wonderful scenery, met some nice people, and most of all I was reminded once again that I am married to the most wonderful person in the world!

I am in Hermiston, OR at the moment, at a motel. We will go pick up our Prius in about half an hour, and then we will drive the 90-or-so minutes back to La Grande. We will have about an hour there, and then we will drive my parents to Boise, where Dad is having a defibrillator installed. Wish us luck, he's still pretty weak.

I see that not much happened while we were gone on our trip. The breakfast room at the motel had FOX "News" on this morning, and from watching five minutes of it I gleaned the following: we are winning the war in Iraq, Al-Qaeda will attack us at any moment, Bush is on the comeback trail, and Tony Snow appears to be splitting time between FOX and the White House... or are FOX and the White House one and the same? What a bunch of claptrap. I did manage to pick up a McPaper (USA Today) and read that our sterling Supreme Court made it o.k. for evidence acquired when cops don't announce they're busting in to be used in court, breaking a pattern of the past 100 years. What will it be next, o.k. to search without a warrant at any time? Being on vacation was so nice, not having to hear about, read about and/or see that kind of bullshit for a week or so.

We'll be staying with my Mom for the next few days in Boise, either at a motel or at the hospital, while Dad has his procedure. More news as more happens!

Monday, June 05, 2006


My posts on Various Miseries will be few and far between for the next couple of weeks. I have too much to do in too short a time to get my end-of-the-school-year checkout process completed to do any serious or semi-serious blogging this week. My dad's condition has improved slightly, enough that death certainly doesn't appear imminent at this point, and enough that he doesn't require constant care. Kit and I may be out of town for a few days. Anyway, look for my official return on or around the 18th or 19th. If I am near a computer and can't resist, I may post a brief note or an article. Until later, take care! I will return.