I have the BEST readers!

You may remember that a few weeks ago, I put up a post about a Japanese company that’s making wrapped chocolate slices, just like cheese slices. It seems reader Scott K. took pity on me, and on Miss D.  He’s just returned from a trip to Japan.  Guess what he brought back, and mailed to us when he got home? Thank you so much, Scott!  That was very thoughtful of you.  The chocolate slices taste delicious on fresh sourdough bread.  (You’ve ruined our diet for today, but we forgive you!) Peter

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Christmas and New Year thoughts from another chaplain

My sister sent me a link to this Facebook post by Chris Bassett, who’s Chaplain of the Deputy Joint Forces Headquarters of the Washington National Guard, and also Chaplain to the Bonney Lake Police Department and Pierce County Sheriff’s Department.  Those of you who aren’t Christian probably won’t find much in it to interest you, but I hope those who are will appreciate his points. We live in difficult and confusing times. Have you noticed? We are told that we can have Christmas without Christ, which is like having a breath, only without the air. We are told that police

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“Dear White America”

I’ve been struggling to formulate a rational response – rather than an angry, frustrated “Not again!” – to an op-ed published in the New York Times on Christmas Eve.  It was titled ‘Dear White America‘.  Here’s an excerpt. You may have never used the N-word in your life, you may hate the K.K.K., but that does not mean that you don’t harbor racism and benefit from racism. After all, you are part of a system that allows you to walk into stores where you are not followed, where you get to go for a bank loan and your skin does

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Swimming with a giant squid???

I was amazed to read this report of a visiting giant squid in Japan. A giant squid that wandered into a Japanese port has been guided back out to sea almost a week after it was spotted, giving enthusiasts and experts a rare glimpse of the mysterious creature. The massive invertebrate, 12ft in length, was discovered by fishermen on December 24 at a port in the city of Toyama on Japan’s northwestern coast. New footage has emerged showing the squid – known as “Heck” – swimming inside the port, taken by someone looking down from above the water. The squid

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Money and costs, 100 years ago

Yesterday I put up a list of things that were different 100 years ago.  Reader M. M. sent me a link to a USA Today article about how money and costs looked that long ago.  Here’s an excerpt. Take-home pay in 2015 vs. 1915. Census Bureau data show that the median household income, measured from 2009 to 2013 (the most recent data available), is $53,046. Back in 1915, two years after income tax came on the scene, you were doing about average if you were making $687 a year, according to the Census. That is, if you were a man.

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Correlating cities’ murder rates with political party dominance

Neighborhood Scout has just published a list of ‘the Top 30 Murder Capitals of America‘ for 2015.  It makes interesting reading, particularly if one goes down the list and checks out the party affiliation of the Mayor of each city (which I’ve just done).  From 30th to 1st place, the list reads like this: 30 – Baton Rouge, LA – Mayor Kip Holden (D) 29 – Youngstown, OH – Mayor John McNally IV (D) 28 – San Bernardino, CA – Mayor R. Carey Davis (R) 27 – Oakland, CA – Mayor Libby Schaaf (D) 26 – Barberton, OH – Mayor

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Gun registration by any other name . . .

. . . is still registration – and registration, historically, has usually been the first step towards confiscation.  That’s why most US gun owners are opposed to it.  Nevertheless, with the Obama administration reportedly preparing to require at least some, possibly all, private gun sales to go through the same background check process as dealer sales, we’re looking at a de facto registration process.  After all, how will law enforcement be able to determine whether or not a background check was conducted before transferring a weapon without being able to check the firearm’s serial number against a database of such

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Terrorism, thug culture and the entitlement society – connecting the dots

Since the Paris and San Bernardino terrorist attacks, I’ve been watching developments and thinking about how those attacks fit into the social dysfunction that can be seen in both countries.  In France, some banlieues (particularly those dominated by Muslim immigrants and their offspring) are virtually ungovernable, forming a ‘safe haven’ for terrorists and criminals.  In the USA, some inner city areas (particularly those riddled with gangs and crime, and those that are havens for political correctness such as the ‘Black Lives Matter‘ movement – often one and the same, of course) also provide a ‘safe haven’ for criminal activities, and

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100 years ago . . .

. . . things were very different!  I first came across this at PandaWhale, but it’s also appeared at a large number of sites around the Internet, so I have no idea who to acknowledge as its originator.  Click on the image for a larger, more readable view. I’m already past the average male life expectancy back then . . . long may that continue, at any rate! Peter

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