Friday, May 29, 2015

Back in the day

When my kids were little.  Clockwise, from upper  left:  Rose Sanzone, Kenny Sanzone, Susan Sanzone, Miriam Sawyer, Rachel Sawyer, Louisa Sawyer

Sunday, May 17, 2015

20th century memories:what ladies wore

I've looked in vain for a photo of my mother wearing one of her hats,  but due to her policy of never having her picture taken until she had lost at least 20 lbs,--which never happened--I don't have one.

Nevertheless, she never left the house without one.  These hats were purely ceremonial, having no justification, either decorative or functional.  They neither enhanced her appearance or kept her head warm.  They were stiff little parabolas of some kind of cloth with a snatch of veiling attached.  The image above is an approximation.  Hers were uglier.

She had a bunch of them, which lived on the top of the sideboard in the dining room, and she would pick one at random when she had to leave the house.  If she were going somewhere related to her profession. she was in full lawyer array, including girdle and stockings.  As she entered the house, off came the girdle and hosiery.

Her normal indoor garb was something called a housedress.   I couldn't find a picture on the Internet of anything as dismal as those housedresses my mother--and Bubbe--wore. Department stores had whole departments of "Moderate Housedresses" as well as "Better Housedresses."  Although I never saw one that was better than any other; they were all pretty frightful.  They usually were made of tacky material in ugly but loud patterns which either buttoned or zipped up the front.  They often had two generous patch pockets on the front.  Bubbe used to keep her false teeth in one of the pockets, but I digress.

In this one respect America is a better place today: terrorists, riots, train derailments, yes, but a total lack of housedresses.

Monday, May 11, 2015

A few words in praise of violence

We've seen lots of quotes on Facebook about the effectiveness of non-violence, most popularly those of Martin Luther King, Jr. These sentiments look very fine, especially on a poster decorated tastefully with flowers or adorable small animals. There are, however, those who dissent from the beloved civil rights leader:

We sleep safely at night because rough men stand ready to visit violence on those who would harm us.  Winston Churchill

Those who “abjure” violence can only do so because others are committing violence on their behalf.  Attributed to George Orwell.

  [M]akin' mock o' uniforms that guard you while you sleep
Is cheaper than them uniforms, an' they're starvation cheap;

Rudyard Kipling, "Tommy"

I could quote more, but you get the idea.

I am not advocating violence on the part of citizens in democratic countries like ours, where we have free speech, a Constitution that protects us, and the power to vote the rascals out (and elect new rascals). But in nations run by kleptocrats and religious fanatics, violence is the  alternative chosen by those who do not choose to be slaves.



The government of the United States tried asking the Southern states nicely not to secede, but somehow it didn't work, though tried over and over. The only thing that put the idea permanently out of their heads was the bloody work of Grant and Sherman.  Nearly a third of the young men who fought for the Confederacy were killed or wounded--a terrible price to pay for a terrible idea.

Hitler also did not respond to reason, and giving him a few countries to gobble up did not work either. 

The Jewish prisoners in the death camps would have been grateful to see Allied bombers raining death on these institutions but the powers that be didn't want to make the Germans mad at them.

There is such a thing as just war.  Violence works.  Violence settles things.  Slavery was ended.  Europe and the Far East were liberated.

Tuesday, May 05, 2015

The "I'm not in jail" club

Bloggers too numerous to mention have claimed that Hillary Clinton should be imprisoned for her tortious e-mail activities during her tenure as Secretary of State.  Not gonna happen.  She is merely joining the large and illustrious group of innocent until proven guilty non-felons who enjoy immunity from the laws that afflict the rest of us.  She can even park in the handicapped-designated parking spot with impunity.

Here are some  further examples:  her husband, of course.  Al Sharpton,  whose official job description should be, if it isn't, rabble rouser, who blithely declines to pay his back income tax.  Al is not in hiding, like Whitey Bulger.  He's right out there, leading flash mobs and sharing wisdom with his dear old buddy, the President of the United States, at the latter's taxpayer-funded residence.

And then there's Jon Corzine, former governor of New Jersey, incompetent and corrupt even by the lenient standards of the Garden State.  He  lost millions of other people's money and hasn't the slightest idea what happened to it.  It has slipped his mind, apparently permanently.  Bernie Madoff must be gnashing his teeth.

I don't understand where several former governors of Illinois went wrong, but at least three of them were actually sent to jail.  Pure carelessness?  Or did they make mistakes like Robert Menendez, Senator from New Jersey, who was doing just fine until he crossed the Democratic leadership by thinking for himself.

Sunday, May 03, 2015

Delaware oil trains a menace

Remind me  why the government did not approve the Keystone Pipeline.

How do the Baltimore rioters differ from a lynch mob?

They don't.  Alan Dershowitz explains what's going on.

Saturday, May 02, 2015

Oh dear.

When he finds his car, maybe my new glasses will be in it.

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Thanks for the heads up

I knew some of my relatives were crazy.  This confirms it.