Monthly Archives: March 2012

Lessons from Icons of the Past—and Future

George McGovern is a reminder of the days when the Democratic Party actually supported democratic values of peace, an anti-poverty agenda, and civil liberties—values that seem hard-to-find in today’s party, where the Dennis Kuciniches and Barbara Lees, Alan Graysons, and James McGoverns of the world are a tiny isolated minority at the far-left edge of a party filled with “centrists” who are less willing to back a progressive agenda than Richard Nixon was during his presidency. How can you take seriously a party that claims to be progressive and lets people like Ben Nelson and Steny Hoyer define itself?

Where are the towering figures like Barbara Jordan, Birch Bayh, Bela Abzug, Shirley Chisolm, Tom Harkin, James Abourezk and so many others—all of whom served with George McGovern in Congress? Where is even a figure like Lyndon Johnson, able to grow past his southern segregationist heritage and shepherd through a series of civil rights bills? These were Democrats who were not afraid to speak their mind, not afraid to fight for justice, and willing to do what they could to steer the US toward a better path. They didn’t turn tail and start mumbling apologies any time someone called them a liberal as if it were some kind of curse word instead of a badge of honor—a disgraceful path embraced by Michael Dukakis during his 1988 Presidential run, and by far too many Democrats since.

Posted in Democracy, Ethics in Government, Peace and War, Politics, poverty, privacy, propaganda, Social and Economic Justice, Transparency vs. Secrecy Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Call for Submissions: Travel Horror Stories

As a favor to one of my travel writers, posting his call for submissions. This is not what I usually publish and please don’t flood me with requests. “ROTTEN VACATIONS,” a new upcoming paperback literary travel annual, edited by John

Posted in Uncategorized

Trend Micro–I will NEVER Buy From You Again

I am therefore adding to my list of missions to save you from buying anything from a company whose product lies to its customers, whose customer service staff is atrocious and which does not stand behind its product. All they had to do was give me back my $61. I would not have been happy about the lost data, but at least I would not have been charged for services not received. But they can’t be bothered, and I’m not going to get any work done until I vent. I’m pretty steamed at the moment.

Posted in Business Ethics, Customer Service as Marketing, Shel's Personal Life, Technology, Web 2.0/Social Media Tagged with: , , , ,

Starting Thursday, 3/22, the Vermont Yankee Nuke has been Operating Illegally

the NRC, which has so far NEVER to my knowledge turned down either a new or renewal license. (They should rename themselves the Nuclear Rah-Rah Cheerleaders)

So much for democracy, state’s rights, etc. The legislature, the governor, and a large majority of the state’s population (not to mention numerous government officials in both Massachusetts and New Hampshire, both of which are within four miles of the plant) all want to see this monstrosity shut down.

Posted in Energy & Sustainability, Politics, Protests and Crackdowns, Shel's Personal Life, Socially Responsible Investing Tagged with: , , ,

Progressive Caucus Announces the Budget for All

I’m pleased to bring you this guest post by the Congressional Progressive Caucus, chaired by Reps. Raul M. Grijalva (D-Ariz.) and Keith Ellison (D- Minn.)—who, along with  Rep. Michael Honda, prepared this alternative budget. If the slash-and-burn mentality of Paul Ryan, Mitt

Posted in Abundance and Prosperity, Democracy, Demographics/Psychographics, Ethics in Government, Politics, poverty, Social and Economic Justice

Does Eating Red Meat Shorten Your Lifespan?

When I got my physical last month, my doctor asked, as usual, what medications I take. Other than a couple of topical skin ointments, I take no meds. He congratulated me on the good health of my heart and lungs–though I suspect that has more to do with my 1-to-2-hours-a-day exercise program than with my diet.

Posted in Abundance and Prosperity, Frugality/Frugal Fun, Shel's Personal Life Tagged with: , , , , ,

Some very impressive passively cooled buildings in hot climates (like 113 degrees F!)

…wicked-cool examples of buildings that keep cool using stored water, overlay walls and other techniques that used to be common, but have been largely abandoned as air conditioning became more available.

Posted in Energy & Sustainability

Getting a specialty service page found by the search engines

I recently discovered that my pages have vanished from the top couple of pages for searches for résumé writing in my local area. From 1985 to 1995, résumé writing for local clients was the biggest chunk of my business. At

Posted in Advertising, Business-general, Marketing Techniques and Philosophies, People Helping People Tagged with: , ,

Green Roofs for Skyscrapers? Why Not?

This Malaysian architect has successfully done skyscrapers with green roofs terracing all the way up to the top of these very tall buildings. Cool!

Posted in Energy & Sustainability

Renovating Can Be Cheaper and Greener than New Construction

For the parts of the existing building that you can adapt or fix, you don’t have to mine or cut down anything, you don’t have to transport anything, and you don’t have to clear a new site out of farmland or forest.

Posted in Energy & Sustainability, Frugality/Frugal Fun, Green Business, Socially Responsible Investing Tagged with: , ,

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