Tuesday, July 7, 2020
It’s been a while since we’ve had a Readers Write session, which is attributable to not many readers writing. Perhaps social distancing creates a similar communication psyche.
Some contributions and comments received . . .
From Tobye in the US, in response to the post about 9 year old Lennie Gwyther and his horse Ginger Mick, who in 1932 rode the thousand kilometres (600 miles) from Southern Victoria to Sydney NSW to attend the opening of the Sydney Harbour Bridge:
Otto, thanks for sharing this wonderful story-we need to encourage more folk to be like Lennie. We must never forget exceptional people and deeds.
Best Regards, Tobye
From Robyn T in response to my limerick about getting the Union Jack off the Oz flag, perhaps . . .
Your flag ditty echoes my sentiments entirely. The Union Jack on the Oz flag is a real sore point in this household.
From Tim B:
The piece about Bernie Ecclestone reminded me of two like instances.
My squadron commander in the Air Force was 42 years old and was dating a 20 year old girl….younger than his 21 year old daughter. His dad asked him why he was dating such a young girl and he replied, “‘Cause I can.”
Dr. S, a local doctor and writer of books and short stories, was a member of our church. The pastor asked him when he, Dr. S, was 89 years old to say something to our congregation about family on one Thanksgiving. He asked Dr. S to please not curse. Dr. S said that when he was 30 years old and starting to practice medicine a 90 year old man came into his office. Dr. S said he wondered to himself who would want to be 90 years old. Then he said to the congregation “I’ll tell you who wants to be 90, some sumbitch that’s 89.”
Otto, you know what side of the political spectrum I stand, but don’t even you find it ironic that when Trump visits Mt. Rushmore it’s billed as racist. 2008, Obama at Mt Rushmore, CNN called it “majestic” and “quite a sight”. Jim Acosta, CNN reported, “It’s a fitting stop for a Presidential contender looking to make history.” And then goes on to ask Obama if he sees his face joining the likes of Washington and Lincoln. To his credit, Obama said he wouldn’t fit, his ears were too big and there was not enough rock up there. 2016, Jeff Zeleny, CNN reporter, called Mt Rushmore a monument to four great Presidents, what changed? Bernie Sanders about Mt Rushmore on the campaign trail at the monument, “This is our country at its best”, “an incredible achievement”, and it “really makes one very proud to be an American.” And finally, Hillary campaigned in front of Mt Rushmore……why is it now racist and not then?
Oh well, think I’ll go and order my Trump America First Eagle.
Take care and stay safe Otto,
Thanks, Tim, as I said in my email back to you, some food for thought in those comments.
Tim’s last sentence is a great segue into an email from Ron from the US. Ron is a vet and commented on my post about the eagle used on the Trump re-election campaign America First tee shirts, which bears a symbol reminiscent of the logo used by Nazi Germany:
Good morning, actually, the symbol is much more like our Marine Corps symbol - the Eagle, Globe and Anchor.
Good point Ron. Here are some images of the Marine Corps symbol that Ron is referring to:
The following commentary is from the Marine Corps website at:
The Eagle is the symbol of the United States, and it is the one part of the emblem that readily associates the Marine Corps with the United States. The eagle proudly carries a streamer in its beak that bears the motto of the Corps: Semper Fidelis.
The Globe signifies the worldwide commitment of the Marine Corps and its areas of responsibility. Marines serve in any clime or place.
The fouled Anchor, whose origin dates back to the founding of the Marine Corps in 1775, represents the amphibious nature of the Marines’ duties and emphasizes the close ties between the Marine Corps and the U.S. Navy.
There are other organisations that use an eagle logo similar to the Nazi eagle, one group that you would never credit being in that category . . .
Bonus item for my father in law, Noel, who is an authority on WW2, and on the history and sociology of Nazi Germany . . .
The following article is dated July 1 2020 and is from the BBC News at:
Finland's air force quietly drops swastika symbol
The old emblem for the Finnish Air Force Command (left) featured a swastika, but the current emblem of the force does not
It was long a rather surprising choice of imagery for Finland's Air Force Command - a swastika and pair of wings. The symbol will always be intrinsically linked with Nazi Germany and its crimes, even though its roots go back many thousands of years. But now it has been confirmed the Air Force Command has quietly stopped using this unit emblem.
The change was first observed by University of Helsinki academic Teivo Teivainen. He had previously questioned whether the continued use of the symbol was helpful for the Finnish armed forces.
Finland's air force has been using a swastika ever since it was founded in 1918, shortly after the country became an independent nation and long before Nazism devastated Europe. Until 1945 its planes bore a blue swastika on a white background - and this was not intended to show allegiance to Nazi Germany, though the two nations were aligned. While the symbol was left off planes after World War Two, a swastika still featured in some Air Force unit emblems, unit flags and decorations - including on uniforms, a spokesperson for the Finnish air force told the BBC.
The word swastika comes from the Sanskrit for well-being or luck. It has been used for thousands of years in Indian cultures and worldwide, and became a fashionable motif in the West in the early 20th Century. However, in 1920 Adolf Hitler adopted the swastika for his National Socialist party, which came to power the following decade in Germany. The genocidal crimes of the Hitler regime mean that the swastika symbolises Nazism and anti-Semitism for most Westerners.
. . . . the swastika became associated with the Finnish air force via . . . a Swedish nobleman called Count Eric von Rosen.
The count used the swastika as a personal good luck charm. When he gifted a plane to the nascent air force of Sweden's newly independent neighbour in 1918 he had had a blue swastika painted on it. This Thulin Typ D was the first aircraft of the Finnish air force and subsequent planes all had his blue swastika symbol too, until 1945.
Supporters of a continued use of the symbol point out that there were no Nazis in 1918 so the air force's use of the swastika has nothing to do with Nazism.
However, while Eric von Rosen had no Nazi associations at the time of his 1918 gift, he did subsequently become a leading figure in Sweden's own national socialist movement in the 1930s. He was also a brother-in-law of senior German Nazi Herman Göring, and, according to Prof Teivainen, a personal friend of Hitler.
Conscripts of the Finnish Air Force during their oath at the Air Force academy in 2017.
The emblem of the Finnish Air Force Academy still features a swastika - superimposed with a propeller:
At the end of the day, is the tee shirt any more controversial than? . . .
Monday, July 6, 2020
Items and reader comments from Bored Panda at:
(George Takei played the rile of Mr Sulu in the original Star Trek).
You, sir, are a treasure.
George Takei. Great American. I love him so much. His interviews on Howard Stern are legendary.
If you or your loved one fits in the description, your best legal option is to STFU.
Imagine reading the beginning as an anti-masker thinking "yes, yes, I will probably call this law firm" and then you read the end and do a double take LOL ;D
LOL, I did the same thing!!!
I, the kid that all of group projects, can confirm this.
Yep. I always do the projects on my own. (I'm still in school)
In Spain, where I live, we all have to wear masks and I haven't heard any bitching from anyone. There are the occasional idiots here and there not wearing them (mainly teenagers), but they're a minority. On May 19, the central government passed an "order" saying that everyone must wear a mask in public spaces, shops, and public transport. We're in the middle of a heat wave (one of many yet to come...) and the only thing that really bothers me about the mask is not being able to see through my fogged up glasses, lol.
What the hell is Bill using for a mask? A plastic bag over his head?
I have damaged lungs. I was in a coma for a couple of months, and on a ventilator part of that time. It is difficult for me to breathe with a mask. It also causes anxiety to have a mask on. I STILL wear a mask every single time I go out, even if I sometimes have to step outside to take a break, lift the mask, and breathe for a while. Why? Because I don't want anyone else to experience months in the hospital. I know what it's like.
Yes, a mask makes you feel a little suffocated, and uncomfortable. I find it triggers me, and gives me anxiety attacks. I still wear one when I leave the house, because it it the responsible and ethical thing to do. Suck it up, buttercup.
To be fair, one of them got holes in it. Just saying.
Stupid is as stupid does.
I don't like this one, because it implies that they're the same thing - and therefore implies that if you agree businesses should be able to discriminate against antimaskers, then you agree they should be able to discriminate against gay couples. Businesses have a right to deny you service if you are causing harm to others. This is why you can't smoke in most businesses (in my country), must wear a shirt where food is served, and must wear a mask during a pandemic. However to require you live a certain lifestyle or follow their religion? No.
We will, we will, mock you!
I read this in the rhythm of the song
We will, we will infect you!
And this one: if you don't like the mask, you're going to hate the ventilator.
I just had to wear one to get a mammogram.
You're not the first, last or only person to ever give birth. Than you go and make it sound pretty gross and top it off by adding Chess Wiz to the mix. Wear your mask no matter what the situation. 😷
Guy did this at stop & shop less than 6 feet from me and it was not a short or light cough. I was worried for 2 weeks.
Happened to me when I went out for the first time in 3 months to renew my driver's license - she came to stand right beside me first
I've seen our politicians make worst things on TV... nose mining, in hand coughing, eyes rubbing, all strictly without mask...
Death by glamour
That isn't a mask. It's a "Showgirls" bra...
I'm a pretty chill, to-each-their-own kind of guy, but this f-ing infuriates me. I mean, great that she's not protecting herself, more power to natural selection and all, but it is endangering others and she couldn't care in the least. Deep sigh...
I hate the fact that people that stupid have so much damn money
Proof that natural selection does occur to the rich, too
Sunday, July 5, 2020
Residents and business owners in Melbourne’s virus-plagued hot spots are angry that they have been forced to go back into lockdown.
“Trade had been improving but everyone forgot we still had the virus and started living their life as normal. I want (our community) to take this seriously, more seriously than they did before. We will stay open for takeaway and I want people who come in here to be a bit more careful. We will be living with this for a long time; it’s not easy.”
- Rose Mehmet, bakery owner
“It was already very frustrating to be inside our homes for three months and now we again have to live with this situation. It is really taking a toll on our mental health because everyone is getting frustrated while sitting inside their home. My message is to be patient, be supportive of each other and let’s hope it will be over in four weeks.”
- Yasser Azeem, resident
“If people are stupid enough not to do what we we’re supposed to do, what do you expect,”
- Spiros Strouzas, resident
July 1, 2020
Ex-Formula 1 boss Bernie Ecclestone has become a dad for the fourth time aged 89. His wife Fabiana Flosi, 44, gave birth to baby boy Ace in just a 25 minute labour. The baby boy is the billionaire businessman’s first son after having three daughters with his previous partners. His eldest, Deborah, 65, was born to his first wife Ivy Bamford before he had socialites Tamara, 35, and Petra, 31, with his second wife Slavica Radic.
July 2, 2020
By the way:
It reminds me of an old joke:
An 80 year old man was having his annual checkup, and the doctor asked him how he was feeling.
"I've never been better!" he boasted. "I've got an eighteen year old bride who's pregnant, and having my child! What do you think about that?"
The doctor considered this for a moment, then said, "Let me tell you a story. I knew a guy who was an avid hunter. He never missed a season. But one day went out in a bit of a hurry, and he accidentally grabbed his umbrella instead of his gun. So he was in the woods, and suddenly a grizzly bear appeared in front of him! He raised up his umbrella, pointed it at the bear, and squeezed the handle. And do you know what happened?"
Dumbfounded, the old man replied "No."
The doctor continued, "The bear dropped dead in front of him!"
"That's impossible!" exclaimed the old man. "Someone else must have shot that bear."
"That's kind of what I'm getting at..." replied the doctor.
Not sayng that’s the situation re old Bernie, just that it reminded me of that joke.
Donald Trump’s re-election campaign is selling merchandise bearing a symbol awkwardly reminiscent of one used by Nazi Germany. The symbol in question appears on a product called the “America First Tee” which retails for $US30. It features the words “America First” above an image of an eagle with its wings spread and its talons gripping a circular version of the American flag.
The bald eagle was chosen to be the national emblem of the United States all the way back in the 1700s, when the fledgling nation first won its independence from Great Britain. The eagle is not usually shown in this position though, and for good reason.
The Nazis used a symbol called the Reichsadler – Imperial Eagle, in English – as Germany’s official national insignia after an edict from Adolf Hitler in 1935. The Reichsadler featured an eagle with its wings spread, and its talons clutching a circular wreath with a swastika inside. It was a slightly tweaked version of the Nazi Party’s emblem, the Parteiadler (Eagle of the party), the only difference being that the Reichsadler’s head looked to the left, and the Parteiadler’s to the right. Here are images of the Reichsadler and Parteiadler:
The Nazi eagle was a prominent symbol in Hitler’s Germany, and a massive version of the logo lorded over the German Reichstag during the Second World War.
Americans who would like to purchase Trump merchandise without any Nazi connotations have plenty of options. The campaign shop sells, among other things, a wooden train set, a Make American Great Again dog leash, several dozen hats of various colours, and even a baby-sized one-piece declaring “I cry less than a Democrat”:
July 2, 2020
By the way:
There have been comparisons in the past between Mr Trump and Herr Hitler:
Donald Trump appears on the front page of the Philadelphia Daily News on Dec. 8, 2015.
This is the first time, so far as I am aware, that the Nazi imagery has come from Trump's own people. Might I therefore suggest a campaign slogan:
POTUS. Trump and Mt Rushmore:
Whilst on the topic of Donald Trump, criticism has been directed at his Independence Day gathering and speech at Mt Rushmore yesterday for failure to maintain social distancing, lack of masks and for the content of his speech. As part of that speech, Trump was critical of protestors defacing and tearing down statues of Confederate leaders, those who have histories of being slaveowners and those who may have made comments about black people and indigenous persons out of step with current perspectives. Trump declared that images of Washington and Jefferson, slaveowners, and Roosevelt, who made derogatory comments about “Indians”, would never be removed from Mt Rushmore.
The news article sourced, link below, also looks at Trump’s fascination with Mt Rushmore.
This is from that article:
Beyond the fireworks, the president has long shown a fascination with the monument and has even jokingly mused about having his own face carved into the mountain alongside the four towering carvings of the presidents historians rank among America's greatest.
“I’d ask whether or not you think I will someday be on Mount Rushmore, but, but here’s the problem. If I did it joking, totally joking, having fun, the fake news media will say, ‘he believes he should be on Mount Rushmore,’ Trump said at a rally in Youngstown, Ohio, in July 2017.
But South Dakota's Republican Gov. Kristi Noem said in a 2018 interview with a South Dakota newspaper that the president once raised the topic with her and that the president seemed “totally serious.”
“I said, 'Mr. President, you should come to South Dakota sometime. We have Mount Rushmore.' And he goes, 'Do you know it's my dream to have my face on Mount Rushmore?'” Noem recalled.
July 4, 2020
By the way:
There is at least one petition to have Trump’s face added to Mt Rushmore. The goal is 1,000 supporters, it has 39:
Mastermind of Mt Rushmore sculptures, Gutzon Borglum, was heavily involved in the Ku Klux Klan
Gutzon Borglum with an early model of Mount Rushmore.
Ever wondered what the back of Mt Rushmore looks like? . . .