Have you heard of this project?
They put pianos out in public places for people to play as an art installation.
Right now they have 60 pianos spread around NYC.
"In a collaboration between artist Luke Jerram and charitable organization Sing for Hope, 60 newly refurbished pianos were installed in public spaces throughout New York City. Jerram has been bringing fleets of pianos to the parks, squares, bus stops, train stations, plazas, churches, post offices, zoos, ferries and bridges of major metropolises since 2008. Before Monday's installation, he had already installed 167 pianos in eight cities worldwide, including Sao Paulo, Brazil; Sydney, Australia; London, England; and Barcelona, Spain."
"A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual death. " ~ MLK jr.
Even our change & hope candidate Obama is stuck in the quagmire of 2 wars-- but it was his choice to continue.
The choice between McChrystal or Petraeus is no choice at all. They are both President Bush's military men, and to me it is comparable to arranging deck chairs on the Titanic. Neither has a fresh vision & Petraeus' is all about the surge.
Problem is if the only way to get an area under control is to flood it with troops, it can't be sustained. We see it in Iraq... as soon as the saturated troop level is withdrawn, the insurgency flares back up. If the surge strategy is so great, why are we still fighting & dying in Iraq? Not that fighting & dying in any other place makes sense either. I think we need a statute of limitations on fruitless revenge. Obama said we are avenging the 9/11 attack. When the number of deaths of troops exceeds the number of people killed in the initial attack, and you choose revenge with a country not involved in the attack, the whole thing is absurd. The pain & suffering & destruction cannot be justified.
So we need real change. Get out of the middle east wars, and get this country back on it's feet.
First, thank you dear readers for putting up with my ranting about the saga of Sears appliance department, and the wild ride we had. Just had to let you know in the end, the final chapter was, as you may have predicted, not without...... more screw ups!
I hustled on out of work to get home in time for the delivery appointment. Two hours later, the guy shows up. Relief-- he looks like a pro, has a happening truck w a lift & he's been doing this for 30 years.
The old machine comes out & he takes the new machine out of the box, swings it around....
The WRONG color!
We waited a week & 1/2 to reorder a white machine, & he delivers a black machine!
By this time I am toast. Of course they had to make a grand finale with another mistake.
We decide we simply want to be done-- it is the correct model, just the wrong color.
We will take it, but (dammit) Sears is going to comp us for this.
So $75 is taken off for the maximum mistakes factor, the manager assures me over the phone.
The machine hums quietly & is running it's first full load tonight.
Ahhhhh we are done with the appliance debacle.
We can bask in it's blue light glow & sigh a sigh of relief.
Or so I thought!
A medium potato was rock hard & uncooked in the oven after an hour @ 350 degrees.
The freaking built in oven-- which we KNOW is at least 17 years old, looks like it either needs a new heating element, or the appliance people are going to burst into laughter & tell us we don't need an appliance repair guy- call the Smithsonian for this relic.
* After having an extensive conversation with the automated voice robot~
an actual human asks us for the serial number.
You know it's really old when the metal plate w the serial number is worn to a sheen & can't be read.
She could punch in the model number from off the booklet- these built-in ovens were made in 1978- 1981. So this baby is at least 29 years old! It's a Whirlpool!
But when the sacred install/delivery guy was here, we got his personal number.
This time we start with him-- cut out the middle man & go from there.
The likelihood we would do this through Sears? Not so much.
"The president strongly believes, as the Department of Interior and Department of Justice argued yesterday, that continuing to drill at these depths without knowing what happened does not make any sense," Gibbs said. Such drilling "puts the safety of those involved, potentially puts safety of those on the rigs and the safety of the environment and the Gulf at a danger that the president does not believe we can afford right now."
In issuing the ruling, Feldman said, "the court is unable to divine or fathom a relationship between the findings (of the government) and the immense scope of the moratorium. The plaintiffs assert that they have suffered and will continue to suffer irreparable harm as a result of the moratorium. The court agrees."
Transocean President Steve Newman, whose company owned the Deepwater Horizon, said Tuesday that he supported ending the moratorium, and the office of Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal filed a brief in support of blocking the moratorium.
Jindal and Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-Louisiana, were among those asking the Obama administration Tuesday not to appeal the ruling.
Jindal? The man out on the waters showing the muck & mire, in a total panic about endangered species & such-- now he's saying let the oil rigs drill in deep water?
Ol' Bobby must have inhaled too many fumes!
But the judge-- what is his excuse? He must be blind if he sees no imminent danger. Funny he should mention irreparable harm!
Can't the president just issue an executive order re the moratorium & not be subject to courtroom folly?
Read it & weep June 21 US Fish & Wildlife reports:
957 dead birds
387 dead Sea Turtles
47 Mammals/ Includes Dolphins
Dear Judge Feldman: I can give you 11 reasons to start with, as to why we ned a drilling moratorium.
1. Gordon Jones, age 28, wife Michelle Jones, who, at nine months pregnant, will give birth any day.
2. Adam Weise, 24, lived in Yorktown, Texas
3. Jason Anderson, a father of two who died during the explosion, was also from Texas.
Four men were from Mississippi:
4. Karl Kleppinger Jr., 38, of Natchez
5. Dewey Revette, 48, of State Line
6. Shane Roshto, 22, of Liberty
7. Burkeen, 37, of Philadelphia.
Kleppinger was a 38-year-old Gulf War vet and a married father of one.
Natalie Roshto, Shane's wife, filed a lawsuit in Louisiana federal court on April 21, saying that she has been suffering post-traumatic stress disorder, depression and anxiety since her husband went missing in the explosion.
Burkeen, had a wife and two kids.
The other men were from Louisiana.
8. Donald Clark of Newellton was 49. His family is still planning his memorial service.
9. Stephen Curtis was 40, married and had two teenagers.
10. Blair Manuel was a 56-year-old engineer from Gonzalez with three daughters.
11. Gordon Jones of Baton Rouge was also an engineer. He was 29, and had gotten off the phone with his wife Michelle just 10 minutes before the explosion.
Enclosed are some photos, that give a brief overview as to why a moratorium is a good idea.
Billowing smoke is choking the air with toxins.
Oily sludgy water ~ Care for a swim?
64 days & counting, still dancing around the "never been done before in water this deep" excuse to
not be able to stop the flow of 160 million gallons of crude oil, choking the Gulf of Mexico to death.
How many businesses now shut down?
Some areas reporting 40%.
36% of the Gulf Waters are closed to fishing.
86,985 square miles- Closed.
BP continues to add dispersant to the oil--
Sulfur and sulfuric acid based dispersant makes the oil spewing into the gulf sink, where its impossible to clean up--and where it depletes oxygen levels under the water, killing plankton and everything above plankton in the food chain.
Because, frankly, sir, it seems you don't get the picture.
In closing, your honor, I think it is safe to say we need to
Once upon a time, back on June 3rd, I ordered a dishwasher from Sears. Unlike the days of old, when the store was only mail order, they now have that new fangled interweb option. The site is great, has tons of info, easy to do comparative analysis & even learn of availability in your own zip code. One could shop, order, pay & set up the delivery from home. I did just that. It was all quite impressive. Until it was time for the actual delivery ~ then the whole thing went to hell in a handbasket. The ball has been dropped now twice, and 2 Saturday install dates have come & gone.
We finally gave up on that, canceled & decided we must deal with real humans at the local level.
That all went swimmingly-- until it was time for the actual delivery ~ then the whole thing went to hell in a handbasket, again! I won't bore you to death with all the sequence of events, other than to say the latest go around involves us having not one but TWO delivery dates for this week! They must be making up for all that lost time!
So when I called Sears to ask what is the real delivery date, I was told that would be the 16th.....
really fine & dandy but we were having that conversation on the 20th. Time & time again Sears keeps giving me delivery dates that go back in time, so I have to wonder if they might need some of these timepieces back from the 1902 catalog? But worse, their national delivery center has a bad case of the classic left hand does not know what the right hand is doing epidemic.
Calls to them tend to run about an hour, and never resolve anything.
So this time around, when they confirmed a date from last week, I also verified that they would be calling us the day before to schedule the delivery as well! So far, it's all been total bullshit, and we are up to our elbows in dishwashing suds. This is one effing appliance! From a store that has been in business for more than a century. I just don't understand why this has been so difficult, but I suspect I may be buying the following product before they get it together!
So this is it Sears appliance department. We officially refuse to do anymore 1 hour calls.
When they tried to pawn me off on that abyss again yesterday, I flat out refused.
No! I'm not losing another hour of my life in the Sears delivery vortex.
YOU call them & figure it out, and let us know--- I'm done.
If we do not have delivery by this Saturday, I will go to the store & demand a refund to my card on the spot. With all this talk of recession & financial hard times, you'd think they would do a better job finishing a sale on a big ticket item. We currently have a plan B in place.
In the end if Sears can't deliver (the thing's been paid in full since June 3rd)~
Then they can expect
Returns & refunds of products they never delivered, that is, not happy customers returning for more of the same. To be continued....ad nauseum, but not for much longer!
Bloody Hell! Who knew being BP's CEO would be such a pressure cooker?
Tony Hayward is really having to earn his $4.7 million for this year. The $700,000 yacht on the left is "Bob" Hayward's toy in the UK.
He needed a rest from all the pressure, you know time away from the cesspool of the gulf waters, all fouled with oil & chemical dispersant, the air choked with toxic black smoke.
Nice he can jet over to the other side of the pond, where the air & water is clear.
Let the small people deal with the mess!
While Tony enjoys the high life, here are the latest Fish & Wildlife numbers posted:
A congressional hearing for the BP CEO took place yesterday. A little overview of how that went....
But Joe Barton Rep R-Texas started the hearing with an Apology! Barton feels it is a shame that a private company is required to pay for the damages they did. Joe thinks we should wait for due process.
Guess what Joe-- there are more than 6000 lawsuits filed against BP, including 11 wrongful death lawsuits, and a host of Federal Environmental laws, that were broken. Perhaps Joe can't see the truth for all the oil refineries in the State of Texas? The people who lost their livelihoods as a result of BP's disaster still need to make mortgage payments, pay the bills & eat. The banks that would foreclose, repossess, or go after late or non-payments with hefty fines & fees are not going to wait for due process. They need relief NOW, and they need not apologize.
Afterward, flip-flop Joe apologized for his apology to BP. He is one sorry politician!
Joe is ashamed.... unprecedented to ask a company to set up a damage fund. Hello Joe.... this is an unprecedented environmental disaster! I for one am glad that Obama did this. We should not let the Mega corporation slink away from their responsibilities. It is one thing to promise on camera to the media that they will "make this right", quite another to actually pay. Plus it is set up with independent oversight- neither corporation or government. By the way, I"m sure BP broke enough environmental laws that 20 billion will not be enough. Put the people first & take care of their immediate needs.
BP~ the company everyone loves to hate these days. For good reason- not only did their cutting corners to increase profit margins cause the worst environmental disaster this country has ever experienced, but it turns out it was sloppy from it's inception.
Huff Po reported:
Professor Peter Lutz is listed in BP's 2009 response plan for a Gulf of Mexico oil spill as a national wildlife expert. He died in 2005.
Under the heading "sensitive biological resources," the plan lists marine mammals including walruses, sea otters, sea lions and seals. None lives anywhere near the Gulf.
The names and phone numbers of several Texas A&M University marine life specialists are wrong. So are the numbers for marine mammal stranding network offices in Louisiana and Florida, which are no longer in service.
BP PLC's 582-page regional spill plan for the Gulf, and its 52-page, site-specific plan for the Deepwater Horizon rig are riddled with omissions and glaring errors, according to an Associated Press analysis that details how BP officials have pretty much been making it up as they go along.
"BP Exploration and Production Inc. has the capability to respond, to the maximum extent practicable, to a worst case discharge, or a substantial threat of such a discharge, resulting from the activities proposed in our Exploration Plan," the oil giant stated in its Deepwater Horizon plan.
In the spill scenarios detailed in the documents, fish, marine mammals and birds escape serious harm; beaches remain pristine; water quality is only a temporary problem. And those are the projections for a leak about 10 times worse than what has been calculated for the ongoing disaster.
Billy Nungesser, president of Plaquemines Parish, La., says there are "3,000 acres (of wetlands) where life as we know it is dead, and we continue to lose precious marshland every day."
There are other wildly false assumptions. BP's proposed method to calculate spill volume based on the darkness of the oil sheen is way off. The internationally accepted formula would produce estimates 100 times higher.
The Gulf's loop current, which is projected to help eventually send oil hundreds of miles around Florida's southern tip and up the Atlantic coast, isn't mentioned in either plan.
The website listed for Marine Spill Response Corp. - one of two firms that BP relies on for equipment to clean a spill - links to a defunct Japanese-language page.
This week, after BP reported the seemingly good news that a containment cap installed on the wellhead was funneling some of the gushing crude to a tanker on the surface, BP introduced a whole new new set of plans mostly aimed at capturing more oil.
The latest incarnation calls for building a larger cap, using a special incinerator to burn off some of the recaptured oil and bringing in a floating platform to process the oil being sucked away from the gushing well.
In other words, the on-the-fly planning continues.
Some examples of how BP's plans have fallen short:
- Beaches where oil washed up within weeks of a spill were supposed to be safe from contamination because BP promised it could marshal more than enough boats to scoop up all the oil before any deepwater spill could reach shore - a claim that in retrospect seems absurd.
BP asserts that the combined response could skim, suck up or otherwise remove 20 million gallons of oil each day from the water. But that is about how much has leaked in the past six weeks - and the slick now covers about 3,300 square miles, according to Hans Graber, director of the University of Miami's satellite sensing facility. Only a small fraction of the spill has been successfully skimmed. Plus, an undetermined portion of the spill has sunk to the bottom of the Gulf or is suspended somewhere in between.
- BP's site plan regarding birds, sea turtles or endangered marine mammals ("no adverse impacts") also have proved far too optimistic.
In Louisiana's Barataria Bay, a dead sea turtle caked in reddish-brown oil lay splayed out with dragonflies buzzing by. More than 200 lifeless turtles and several dolphins also have washed ashore. So have countless fish.
There weren't supposed to be any coastline problems because the site was far offshore. "Due to the distance to shore (48 miles) and the response capabilities that would be implemented, no significant adverse impacts are expected," the site plan says.
But that distance has failed to protect precious resources. And last week, a group of environmental research center scientists released a computer model that suggested oil could ride ocean currents around Florida and up to North Carolina by summer.
- Perhaps the starkest example of BP's planning failures: The company has insisted that the size of the leak doesn't matter because it has been reacting to a worst-case scenario all along.
Yet each step of the way, as the estimated size of the daily leak has grown from 42,000 gallons to 210,000 gallons to perhaps 1.8 million gallons, BP has been forced to scramble - to create potential solutions on the fly, to add more boats, more boom, more skimmers, more workers. And containment domes, top kills, top hats.
But perhaps the most glaring error in BP's plans involves Lutz, the professor, one of several dozen experts recommended as resources to be contacted in the event of a spill.
Lutz is listed as a go-to wildlife specialist at the University of Miami. But Lutz, an eminent sea turtle expert, left Miami almost 20 years ago to chair the marine biology department at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton. He died four years before the plan was published."
It seems obvious BP's environmental impact statement was cut & pasted from some previous arctic drill project. Worse, the US government approved the plan. Did they not notice the wrong species of animals listed? It would be like submitting environmental impact paperwork for an Alaska project, mentioning Giraffes, Elephants & Lions as the species to address.
New documents are emerging that demonstrate BP's choice of faster & riskier methods.
Although the US says they are "keeping a boot on the throat of BP", it's clear that those governmental boots are mired in the oil itself, that is choking the Gulf Waters, and enmeshed in the profits the oil industry brings.
Lots of Gulf & Nationwide politicians are, demanding that the Government do more to deal with the disaster, while also insisting there be no moratorium on offshore drilling.
All that profit & gooey oil is making the boot slip off the throat of accountability- not just for BP, bit big oil in general.
They want it both ways- fix the catastrophic spill, while allowing the oil and big money to continue to flow.
This is a golden opportunity for the Obama administration to seriously look at the fatalities of all these dirty industries, and seek true alternative & clean energy. If ever there were a time to launch a full blown solar program, this is it.
If the fossil fuel profiteers were smart, they would be on top of getting the solar conversion industry into full swing. I want solar panels on the White House, and made a mandatory requirement of all new construction. And seriously, new cars coming off the assembly line in the 21st century should not be getting 12 to 18 miles per gallon. The technology exists to get much better mileage. Make a 25 mpg standard mandatory. Because the industry was not bright enough to catch on, that is one of the reasons Toyota & Honda sell more cars. Soo much catching up & evolution to do!