Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Two Weeks

 

I almost wrote that Election Day is in two weeks, but that is not the reality this year. It is more correct to think of it as the election season will be over two weeks from tonight. The polls will close and the votes will be tabulated. Some mail in votes will continue to trickle in, but apparently many of us want to be sure our votes are counted on Election Day so that our preference and will is known and, therefore, we are voting early. 

It has been an amazing election season. I do not know what will transpire during the next two weeks, but I am sure something dramatic will happen which, in a previous year may have turned the tide, but with, by some accounts, 28 million votes already cast and many more coming in every day--it is going to be hard to change the will of the American people with a single event. 

Just for reference, about 138 million votes were cast during the 2016 election. That means that 20 percent of the votes cast during 2016 have already been sent to the ballot box. I expect, however, this years vote to be closer to 160 million. Some are predicting 150 million votes, but I think the polarization of the country could drive that number even higher.

I expect to vote next week when the early voting begins in Maryland. 

It is hard to believe that in two weeks the campaigning will finally be over. I believe that I may see a decrease in my email of possibly 100 per day. It has been a long election season, but I am sure that the 2024 election season will begin on January 21, 2021.

CAUTION: Personal Rant Follows

Our country is in great peril. We are under attack by foreign and domestic forces. Our president is more concerned about airing his personal grievances than about running the country. COVID is out of control and Americans, our friends, relatives, and family are dying daily. The budget deficit is exploding in an attempt to mute the effects of COVID on the economy and the military is suffering despite what we are being told to the contrary. And I do not buy the line that the Democrats are the problem, if the president would tell Mitch McConnell to make a deal, then a deal would be made. But the president believes that he gets more mileage by blaming anyone other than himself for the problems in America than he would get by working to fix those same problems.

As I was writing about popularity, I was considering what president says, “Suburban women, will you please like me?” the president pleaded in Johnston, Pennsylvania on Tuesday (The Financial TimesBeing president is not an ego building popularity contest.

This country and the world need America back as the military, economic, and political leader of the free world. All of these have been abrogated by the America first policy. I, frankly, am tired of hearing "I" and need to hear more "WE" and "US". Our country was not founded upon the concept of "I". If you don't believe me, read the first line of the Constitution.

I know that I have friends and family who vehemently disagree with me and I respect your views and have spent my entire adult life working so that we can have dissenting opinions without fear of retribution, but I am going to lay it out right here and say that I agree with the words published by the editors of the New York Times on Sunday:

Mr. Trump is a man of no integrity. He has repeatedly violated his oath to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.

CONCLUSION

Vote! The future of America depends upon your participation no matter what direction you believe this country should take. 


-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD


Monday, October 19, 2020

Monday Musings - October 19, 2020

 



1. It is the third Monday of October and the month is quickly slipping into November. Daylight Saving Time ends in less than two weeks on November 1st, marking the official beginning of the dark season.

Maple Tree on Karas Walk
Elkridge, MD
October 17, 2020
2. Autumn is on full display. Colorful trees and  blue, clear skies adorn the roadways and paths we travel. Enjoy the scenery, it is days like these that take the sting out of the coming season.

3. There are 15 days until Election Day. If you have not yet, Vote! 

4. From United Steel Workers tweet as reported on Fox News:

Sing along:

🎶

Take me out to the ballot box, Take me out to the polls. Get me my sticker so I can ‘gram, I won’t stand for their suppression scams. For it’s root, root, root for @JoeBiden, If we don’t win we‘re all doomed. ‘Cause in 1-2...17 more days, We can save the USA!

🎶


5. Did you see on the news that Armenia and Azerbaijan are at war? No, probably not. A violent conflict which has drawn the attention of much of the world is not getting much press here in America. See some headlines below.

6. An editorial in the New York Times, written by the Editorial Board of the New York Times, makes the following assertion about the president: Mr. Trump is a man of no integrity. He has repeatedly violated his oath to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. Now, in this moment of peril, it falls to the American people — even those who would prefer a Republican president — to preserve, protect and defend the United States by voting.

7. Family NFL results:

     Ravens (5-1) defeat Eagles (1-4-1) 30-28
     Football Team (1-5) loses to Giants (1-5) 29-30
     Steelers (5-0) destroy Browns (4-2) 38-7
     Cowboys (2-3) play Cardinals (3-2) tonight

8. History Today. October 19, 1781, Hopelessly trapped at Yorktown, Virginia, British General Lord Cornwallis surrenders 8,000 British soldiers and seamen to a larger Franco-American force, effectively bringing an end to the American Revolution.

Lord Cornwallis was one of the most capable British generals of the American Revolution. In 1776, he drove General George Washington’s Patriots forces out of New Jersey, and in 1780 he won a stunning victory over General Horatio Gates’ Patriot army at Camden, South Carolina. Cornwallis’ subsequent invasion of North Carolina was less successful, however, and in April 1781 he led his weary and battered troops toward the Virginia coast, where he could maintain seaborne lines of communication with the large British army of General Henry Clinton in New York City. After conducting a series of raids against towns and plantations in Virginia, Cornwallis settled in the tidewater town of Yorktown in August. The British immediately began fortifying the town and the adjacent promontory of Gloucester Point across the York River.





Trump Runs the Kind of Campaign He Likes, but Not the One He Might Need - The New York Times

On the Front Lines of a Brutal War: Death and Despair in Nagorno-Karabakh - The New York Times

Remdesivir Fails to Prevent Covid-19 Deaths in Huge Trial - The New York Times

Ending the filibuster is about to be more important than ever - The Washington Post

ISIS attacks surge in Africa even as Trump boasts of a ‘100-percent’-defeated caliphate - The Washington Post

United Steelworkers shine 'bat signal' on Trump Tower in Chicago - Fox News

Only 2 states trending in the right direction - CNN

Italy unveils new COVID-19 restrictions as daily infections climb - Reuters

Armenia and Azerbaijan truce breaks down within hours - Reuters


Ronald Reagan Quote for the Week

“If you analyze it I believe the very heart and soul of conservatism is libertarianism. I think conservatism is really a misnomer just as liberalism is a misnomer for the liberals — if we were back in the days of the Revolution, so-called conservatives today would be the Liberals and the liberals would be the Tories. The basis of conservatism is a desire for less government interference or less centralized authority or more individual freedom and this is a pretty general description also of what libertarianism is.” 


-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD


Sunday, October 18, 2020

Cycle of the Seasons

 

Sitting here this morning thinking that the 39 degrees outside of my door is cold and realizing that in a few months this temperature would qualify as a warm winter day made me think about the cycle of the seasons. 

Grass Mounds Along the Fence
Elkridge, MD
October 17, 2020
Yesterday, for instance, as part of the winter preparations Chris and I cut the ornamental grasses mourned the outside of the pool. We have been experimenting with when to cut the grasses--whether it is better to let them winter or to get them removed while they are still green and easier to manage. It took two trips to the landfill recycling area to remove them as part of what turned out to be a long midday project. I can usually get them all into one highly mounded truck load, but with the exceptionally favorable growing season they were more voluminous than normal. 

But the project is complete. This past year we waited until Spring to cut the grasses and it was a lot messier. Being that yesterday was a cooler day, we did not find as many critters lurking in the mounds--which is good since we have found snakes in the past and while the snakes are the good snakes, it still causes a moment of pause when one comes slithering out as we start cutting away with the hedge trimmers. I do wish the battery on the trimmer would last for the entire project--it just doesn't have enough justice to make it all the way. 

Cutting the grasses is part of the cycle of the seasons. Next we have to drain the water from the lines in the pool house in preparation for freezing temperatures, from which, so far, we have been spared. 

As the leaves change color and fall from the trees, the cycle of the seasons continues.


-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Saturday, October 17, 2020

A Week Later


 I am now one week removed from frolicking, OK maybe it wasn't frolicking, on a warm almost 90 degree Florida beach. The relative, by comparison, cold of Maryland has reminded me that given a choice between too hot or too cold--I prefer too hot. Even without air conditioning--which I experienced for the first five days of my recent Florida vacation.

Backyard Trees with Autumn Leaves
Elkridge, MD
October 17, 2020
It was 43 degrees this morning as I stepped outside to allow the dogs to take care of business. I stood outside with them to monitor their activity and ensure that Finnegan actually does what is expected of him. He loves to smell the morning fragrances on the grass and sometimes forgets the reason that he is outside. 

I looked at the morning temperature in Jupiter, and at 7:09 AM it was a warm and likely humid 80 degrees. That is 37 degrees warmer than outside of my door in Elkridge. 

The youth baseball game we were attending this morning was canceled, I guess the field was too wet and so I think we will be cutting the grasses around the pool, once they dry.

I just wish it was warmer. And it is only going to get colder as the month progresses and transforms into November when the dark season begins. 

A week later, I fondly remember the time spent on the beach, it will help me to make it to the other side of the seasons that we have entered. 

But, outside my window, the morning sunlight reflecting off the leaves is transforming the region into a colorful autumn display and I enjoy the color. Can springtime really be that far off? 


-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Friday, October 16, 2020

Misinformation

 


I don't know how intentional it was, but saying the 85 percent of people who wear masks get COVID-19 demonstrates a definite lack of understanding of statistics and reality. He was trying to discredit the practice of wearing facial coverings to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Who said that, you might ask?

The President. 

Trump repeats inaccurate claim about masks, citing CDC study. - NBC News

Along with other outright lies, it appears that the most consistent source of misinformation in the country right now is the president, himself.

What is comical and tragic is watching his staff try to walk back his erroneous comments.

I do not want to restate the lies and false truths because in doing so I could make them seem more real, but an article recapping the first debate delves into many of the misleading and outright untrue statements by both candidates during the first debate. It is interesting reading.

Trump unleashes avalanche of repeat lies at first presidential debate - CNN

My advice--listen and check the facts. Too many people use the cherry picking approach to facts and studies--finding the one that supports their view rather than reviewing the entire body of work on a subject. 

Do not be responsible for spreading misinformation and propaganda!


-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Thursday, October 15, 2020

Football and COVID

 


The Southeastern Conference (SEC) of college football is a mess with COVID positive tests right now. Games are being postponed and coaches and players are returning positive test results. Sadly, it had to happen. Football is an up-close and personal sport. 

The latest headline is:

Alabama Coach Saban Tests Positive as Virus Disrupts SEC - The Wall Street Journal

There have been problems in the NFL as well.

With the infection rates across the country steadily rising, that we are having a football season is fantastic. but we need to recognize that football players have close personal contact with their teammates and opponents--it is part of the game, unless we go to a no blocking, flag-football approach.

The players are taking risks to play the game for our enjoyment and their financial reward--we need to remember that. 


-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD


Wednesday, October 14, 2020

 


The Supreme Court nomination hearings for Judge Amy Coney Barrett are proceeding and are at times fascinating to watch as Senators make surprisingly old arguments seem even older.

My observations:

I am not sure I could sit there for hours on end, as the Judge is doing, and listen to the same things over again.

The Judge is being very polite when a Senator asks a question that is merely only a shade away from one that was asked earlier and to which she did not respond. 

The Judge seems very judge-like.

I was fascinated with one senator's detailed conspiracy theory about dark money.

It is a process and whether we believe the timing to be correct or not, she will become the next Supreme Court Justice and the vote in the Senate to confirm will likely be 52-48. She will likely be seated before November 10th. 

We can discuss the Constitutionality of the process--although there is not much to discuss and we can discuss whether there is precedent for seating a justice so far into an election process--there seems to be a very healthy discussion about Abraham Lincoln's intent--but regardless, he did not nominate a replacement justice until after the election and his speaking and writings do not definitively support either side in the argument, in my opinion.

Bottom Line is that this is our Congress at work! If we are not happy, there is an election underway and the power of change is in our hands.


-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD


Tuesday, October 13, 2020

Cold--Where is the Warmth?

 

The Last Palm Tree Image
Jupiter Island, Florida
October 10, 2020
Thirty degrees really makes a difference, especially when the difference is in the daily high. Saturday, Chris, Ethan, and I were on a Jupiter Island beach and the temperature was in the high 80's. We were warm and enjoyed the humidity associated with the daily rains that we were experiencing.

Yesterday, in Elkridge, the high temperature never got past 58 degrees at my house. It rained all day, and it was cold. I actually had to put long pants on to stay warm. It was a shock to my system. 

The last evening we spent in Florida we made our usual trip to the ocean to say good-bye. I have already written about the 360 degree sunset and the image of the palm tree was taken looking west into the sunset behind the clouds. It was a truly special evening and a special memory. Most importantly, it was warm. 

I am looking forward to this afternoon in Elkridge as the temperature is supposed to creep into the upper 70's. Hopefully the lawn will dry enough for me to mow. The falling leaves and the two-week uncut grass make for a messy looking yard. And of course, after they dry it is time to cut the ornamental grasses around the pool. Welcome back to all of the work required to maintain a home. 

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Monday, October 12, 2020

Monday Musings - October 12, 2020

 





1. Today is the second Monday of October and it is Columbus Day, a federal holiday. 

2. I experienced a 360 degree sunset my last evening in Florida. The setting sun was reflected off the clouds all around from the west, north and south. It was a sight to enjoy and a great send-off.

Kite Surfer
Carlin Park, Jupiter, Florida
October 10, 2020

3. Kite surfing looks to be an exciting aport. There certainly were enough surfers in the water on Saturday enjoying the sun, surf, and ample wind.

Saying Good-bye
Blowing Rocks, Jupiter Island, Florida
October 10, 2020

4. Saying good-bye to the ocean is always a difficult thing for Chris and I to do. Saturday evening, standing on Blowing Rocks with the 360 degree sunset was a special night. The clouds reflecting the setting sun behind us in the image are in the East and part of the spectacle we witnessed. We reveled in the 85 degree temperatures realizing that we might not experience such warmth until we again visit our Florida Home.

5. Chris and I were amazed at how quickly the autumn colors are arriving. We saw the trees beginning to turn as far south as South Carolina on our drive home yesterday. Along Route 301 in Virginia, the colors were actually very evident and beautiful--even in the driving rain.

6. Family NFL Report.

    Ravens (4-1) defeat Bengals (1-3-1) 27-3
    Steelers (4-0) defeat Eagles (1-3-1) 38-29
    Cowboys (2-3) defeat Giants (0-5) 37-34
    Football Team (1-4) loses to Rams (4-1) 10-30

7. The election is drawing closer! There are just 22 days until Election Day. Many places are already voting--be sure you vote!

8. Today in History. After sailing across the Atlantic Ocean, Italian explorer Christopher Columbus sights a Bahamian island, believing he has reached East Asia. His expedition went ashore the same day and claimed the land for Isabella and Ferdinand of Spain, who sponsored his attempt to find a western ocean route to China, India, and the fabled gold and spice islands of Asia. Columbus was born in Genoa, Italy, in 1451. Little is known of his early life, but he worked as a seaman and then a maritime entrepreneur. He became obsessed with the possibility of pioneering a western sea route to Cathay (China), India, and the gold and spice islands of Asia. At the time, Europeans knew no direct sea route to southern Asia, and the route via Egypt and the Red Sea was closed to Europeans by the Ottoman Empire, as were many land routes. Contrary to popular legend, educated Europeans of Columbus’ day did believe that the world was round, as argued by St. Isidore in the seventh century. However, Columbus, and most others, underestimated the world’s size, calculating that East Asia must lie approximately where North America sits on the globe (they did not yet know that the Pacific Ocean existed). 



Politics Dominates as Barrett’s Confirmation Hearings Begin in Senate - The Wall Street Journal

With New ICBM, Kim Jong Un Returns to an Old Tactic - The Wall Street Journal

Trump’s Virus Treatment Revives Questions About Nuclear Authority - The New York Times

Fauci Says a Trump Campaign Ad Misrepresented His Comments - The New York Times

White House pivots again on stimulus negotiations after bipartisan backlash - The Washington Post

Another casualty of the coronavirus pandemic: Trust in science - The Washington Post

Bag Santa and the elves? A holiday hiring slump takes shape - Reuters

Pandemic can be overcome quickly with right tools: WHO - Reuters



Ronald Reagan Quote for the Week

With hard work and imagination, there is no limit to what, working together, our nations can achieve. Gaining a peaceful resolution of these conflicts will open whole new vistas of peace and progress -- the discovery that the promise of the future lies not in measures of military defense or the control of weapons, but in the expansion of individual freedom and human rights. Only when the human spirit can worship, create, and build, only when people are given a personal stake in determining their own destiny and benefiting from their own risks, do societies become prosperous, progressive, dynamic, and free.

 Address to the 40th Session of the United Nations General Assembly, October 25, 1985



-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, Maryland


Sunday, October 11, 2020

Dawn South Carolina

The trip to return to Maryland is underway. Dawn finds us cruising I-95 about 20 miles into South Carolina. We know that the remnants of Hurricane Delta are waiting for us further north, but we are making our way home to Elkridge.

Departing was very sad. We finally lived in our condo for it to feel like home. A very comfortable home. I completed a number of small projects while we were there, but for the first time projects were not the reason for the trip.

We need to get our minds ready for autumn. There is a lot of work to do around our primary residence.

I will enjoy the memories of my first and only vacation of 2020.

— Bob Doan, somewhere on I-95 in South Carolina

Saturday, October 10, 2020

Sunset over Tequesta

 

Sunset over Tequesta
October 8, 2020

Sunsets and sunrises can be spectacular. I especially enjoy sunsets when there is water involved, even if from a place that I have enjoyed many times, for instance the Intracoastal Waterway looking at Tequesta from Jupiter Island.

Ethan Watching the Sunset
Jupiter Island, Florida
October 8, 2020

I have enjoyed many sunsets there and they are never boring. I enjoy the colors and the reflection on the surface of the water.

Sometimes I have a subject in the foreground to play with, as I did the other night when Ethan was snorkeling. It makes the scene different yet again and reminds me of the beauty that is so easily taken for granted. The sunset the other night was especially enjoyable because we had suffered through almost a week of overcast skies which blotted the sun from our view. 

Sunrise off my Condo Patio
Tequesta, Florida
October 10, 2020

As I begin the last day of my escape in Florida, I am reflecting on the over two weeks of time away from Maryland and finally living in my Florida condo. The condo has begun to feel like home because I have spent multiple weeks in a row here. In fact since late August, Chris and I have been at the condo more time than we have been in Maryland. Right now I am enjoying my 3rd Saturday in a row here, although we will be leaving early tomorrow morning to make the drive back to Maryland.

The image of the sunset and this morning's sunrise will help me to help remember this place because it will be too many months until I can return. I am like a reverse snowbird--I seem to go north for the winter.  


-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

Friday, October 9, 2020

To the Everglades

 

Three Intrepid Airboat Sailors
Everglades Safari Park
October 7, 2020

It is October in Florida and there is no better time than now to go for an airboat ride in the Everglades. The warm 85 degree weather made for a perfect afternoon ride through the world's slowest river.

Chris and I took our grandson, Ethan for a ride on a real airboat--there was good physical distancing on the airboat, although I wore my mask the entire time.

It was about a 2 hour drive to Everglades Safari Park where we embarked upon the airboat. We had enjoyed air boating through the Everglades a number of years ago from the Everglades Safari Park, and decided to return. The COVID-19 pandemic has not been kind to the park as it is clearly in a state of disrepair, but the alligator show after the airboat ride was interesting and Ethan did get a nice photo with a real baby gator. 




Ethan with a Gator
Everglades Safari 
Park
October 7, 2020

The ride was pleasant and speedy. We cruised over the grasses and had a great time. Sadly, we did not find any gators or other significant wildlife out in the 'glades. There was one white egret--but that was the extent of the wildlife--even the birds were scarce.

It was a great day even considering the long ride. It was fun to get out and enjoy the natural beauty, almost unspoiled, of the Everglades. 

We realized that the Everglades National Park  at 2357 square miles, is larger than Rhode Island and just a few square miles smaller than Delaware. There are reportedly 200,000 alligators living within the Everglades. The entire Everglades region is about 7,800 square miles which makes it larger than Connecticut as well as Delaware and Rhode Island. It is big and sometimes we lose sight of how vast the region is and how it needs to be protected from encroachment by civilization.


-- Bob Doan, Tequesta, Florida

Thursday, October 8, 2020

VP Debate Night


It was touted as Debate Night in America. The two Vice Presidential candidates facing off in a cage match for 90 minutes.

OK, maybe it wasn't exactly a cage match, there were rules and they both came out alive, lol.

This debate was more like a debate than last week's first presidential debate, however, I was concerned and dismayed over what was not said by the candidates--please notice the plural!

Up front, I wonder if the Vice President has a problem with women. He did not respect his agreed time limits and talked over both the challenger and the moderator on multiple occasions.

Unanswered questions:

Will there be a peaceful transfer of power if Trump-Pence is not re-elected? (Pence)

Will the democrats stack the Supreme Court? (Harris)

Note: I found it interesting that Pence made a big point that Harris did not answer this question when he himself left so many questions unanswered

If Roe v Wade is struck down, what would the candidates like to see their home states do with respect to women's rights? (Both)

How will the President protect pre-existing conditions if the Affordable Care Act is struck down. (Pence)

Trump taxes, debts, and medical transparency (Pence)

Those are just a few of the salient unanswered questions. I noted that the Vice President tended to bring up more ancient history which is not currently important to this campaign, like the FBI and spying on the Trump campaign. That has been dealt with, get over it and talk about current issues. 

I was struck by the misleading statements and untruths that mostly the Vice President used in his arguments and responses. The New York Times has assessed the major ones in their article Fact-Checking the Vice-Presidential Debate.

Who won?

It was a draw. There were no knock-out answers and most of the time the candidates were dancing around the issues. 

There are 26 days remaining until the election. 


-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD


Wednesday, October 7, 2020

Sand, Beaches, and Dogs

  

The thing about going to the beach is the sand. It gets everywhere. I am not sure how it migrates into the places that it does, but it finds its way into the smallest crevices and requires thorough cleaning to remove when we return home. My truck is becoming morel ike a sandy beach than a truck. We bring the sand in on our feet and our bodies even though we try to wash it off. The sand clings to the chairs, the umbrella and the bags we carry on and off the beach.

Ethan and Finnegan
Jupiter Island Beach, Florida
October 6, 2020

I brought Makayla, my Keeshond, with us on this trip with the intention of introducing her to the ocean, but I have not wanted to deal with the amount of sand her curly fur will collect. Yet as the vacation winds down, sadly already I am more focused upon the vacation's ending than the activity of the day, I need to introduce the old dog to the ocean and the beach. And I need to be prepared to handle the sand that she will accumulate during her visit to the ocean.

Dogs have a special way of enjoying the beach. And I enjoy watching the dog enjoying the beach from my chair with my camera rolling. I find it especially humorous when Finnegan is startled by something and jumps straight up with all four feet.  


Ethan and Finnegan did get to play on the beach last evening as we celebrated Happy Hour. It was fun to watch the two of them run and play on the beach.

Another day.


-- Bob Doan, Tequesta, Florida 


Tuesday, October 6, 2020

Wash, Rinse, Repeat

 

Lefty Throwing the Football
Carlin Park, Jupiter, Florida
October 5, 2020

As I have written before, I do not know what to do with or how to characterize Tuesday. It is the day caught between the beginning and the middle of the week.

I was sitting on the beach last evening actually thinking about today and how my vacation would be over next Tuesday and I would be back at work. What a depressing thought. As I enter the last week of fun in the sun, my mind is already beginning to prepare for my return to the North and work and the grind of my daily life. 

Ethan Receiving the Football
Carlin Park, Jupiter, Florida
October 5, 2020

Yesterday was a great day for the beach. I got to play catch with my grandson who is visiting and we also splashed in the waves for a bit. The yellow flag was up and the waves were rough. There was a strong current and potential for undertow, so we were cautious. 

It was fun to be on the beach in the afternoon as the rain had cleared and the day brightened. Ethan was in school until 3 PM, so we didn't get to the beach until about 3:30 PM. But, it was fun nonetheless. Being able to be in school from anywhere in the world is a definite plus, if only the world were actually open. I saw a drone flying the beach and I realized that I have my drone and for some reason have not flown it so far on this trip. Perhaps today.

And so for Tuesday, I am hoping that it is a wash, rinse, repeat kind of day. The days remaining of my Florida escape are becoming numbered and we are already beginning to think too much about leaving.

-- Bob Doan, Tequesta, FL

Monday, October 5, 2020

Monday Musings - October 5, 2020




1. It is the first Monday of October. Welcome October! Things have continued to get crazy around the world. Next week is Columbus Day. 

2. The MLB Playoffs are underway with the Division Series. Baseball continues alive.

3. Family NFL Results:

      Pittsburgh (3-0) was postponed against Titans (3-0)
    Ravens (3-1) defeated Football Team (1-3) 31-17
    Cowboys (1-3) lose to Browns (3-1) 38-49

Ethan and Chris on the Beach
Jupiter Island, Florida
October 4, 2020


4. It has been raining a lot here in Florida. But, I am still getting outside in between the storms.

5. Ethan has been visiting and we are enjoying having him around. We snorkeled on Saturday and played on the beach yesterday. He has school today--but, there may be some afternoon beach activities. 

6. I think that it is unconscionable that someone would receive a positive COVID-19 test and continue their activities thinking it might be a false positive. That puts too many people at risk. The correct thing to do is quarantine pending the second test.

7. In case you forgot, the California wildfires are still burning!

8. It is amazing how the news tends to become so focused upon one topic that other important ones are forgotten or mover "below the fold."

9. Does there way that the president is handling his illness make you feel a little creepy, like we are not living in a democratic republic?

10. Today in History. On October 5, 2011, Steve Jobs, the visionary co-founder of Apple Inc., which revolutionized the computer, music and mobile communications industries with such devices as the Macintosh, iPod, iPhone and iPad, dies at age 56 of complications from pancreatic cancer. Born on February 24, 1955, in San Francisco, California, to unmarried graduate students Joanne Schieble and Abdulfattah Jandali, a Syrian immigrant, Jobs was adopted as a baby by Paul Jobs, a Silicon Valley machinist, and his wife Clara. After graduating from high school in Cupertino, California, in 1972, Jobs attended Reed College, a liberal arts school in Portland, Oregon, for a single semester before dropping out. He later worked briefly for pioneering video game maker Atari in California, traveled to India and studied Zen Buddhism.




Trump Didn’t Disclose First Positive Test While Awaiting a Second Test - The Wall Street Journal

The president’s doctors say he is taking a steroid typically recommended for serious cases - The Wall Street Journal

Can Halloween Be Saved? Yes, Experts Say. Here’s How. - The New York Times

California wildfires reach devastating milestone, scorching more than 4 million acres - CBS News

Coronavirus relief deal elusive as Pelosi says Democrats await agreement from the administration - The Washington Post

Secret Service agents, doctors aghast at Trump’s drive outside hospital - The Washington Post

Twitter users flood #ProudBoys hashtag with gay pride images - Reuters

NATO chief calls for ceasefire in Nagorno-Karabakh - Reuters



Ronald Reagan Quote for the Week

Now, I've been talking on about the economy -- something I tend to do because I think a healthy economy will truly transform the lives of the people of our country. But there's just one more thing I'd like to say about it. Sometimes it takes patience when you try something new. But I tell you, well, it's hard to hang on when times are tough. But I tell you with complete conviction, that if we stay on the right track nationally, then the people in the towns of the valley will make a comeback. It won't happen overnight, but it will happen in Brownsville as it has happened in much of the rest of the Nation.

But let me say in closing that even though economic matters are important -- well, the old, old saying is true: Man does not live by bread alone. Man lives by belief, by faith in things that are larger than himself. We really almost diminish all the things we are when we limit the debate to money and how it's distributed in our country. We lose a sense of the mystery in men's souls and the mystery of life.


(Remarks at a Reagan-Bush Rally in Brownsville, Texas - October 2, 1984)



-- Bob Doan, Tequesta, FL




Sunday, October 4, 2020

A COVID-19 Sunday in America

 

It is an October Sunday in America.

The MLB playoffs are underway.

The NFL is playing football, but two games are postponed due to COVID-19.

The President is in the hospital with COVID-19.

745 Americans died of COVID-19 yesterday bringing the total number of American deaths to near 209,000.

As we grapple for normalcy, we are reminded at every step that we are in the middle of a pandemic. It is not a hoax. It is not fake news. I think those who did not believe that COVID-19 was real can now, finally, understand that the disease and the threat are real. 

My recommendations:

Pray for those who are afflicted that they will recover.

Wear a mask when in public. I think the mis-information about masks not helping or providing any protection has been sufficiently discounted. As the disease has progressed and our understanding of its transmission, the recommendations have evolved. Do not rely upon old information just because it suits how you want to believe.

Be responsible for yourself. What is do or do not do is no one's responsibility except yourself!

Be well and I hope you continue to be well.

-- Bob Doan, Tequesta, Florida


Saturday, October 3, 2020

Changing Events

 

Is is amazing how quickly things change. The president has departed the White House to become a patient at Walter Reed and now is facing with the cruel realities of COVID-19 that he called a hoax. 

That the seemingly most secure COVID-19 bubble on the planet was breached suggests that testing alone does not provide sufficient protection.

I am praying for the president, his wife, and everyone in their circle to recover from COVID-19. 

It is sad that so many people are running down the "what-ifs" and not working to ensure that our republic and government remain strong. It is also interesting how the news media is now totally about Trump and has dropped the white supremacist and other COVID-19 related items.

I hope the president recovers and can get back into the business and running the government.


-- Bob Doan, Tequesta, FL


Friday, October 2, 2020

Loggerhead Marinelife Center

 

Margaret Ingels
Loggerhead Marinelife Center
Juno Beach, Florida
October 1, 2020


Being near and enjoying the beaches of South Florida, I have an appreciation for marine life. Yesterday, Chris and I made our almost annual journey to the Loggerhead Marinelife Center in Juno Beach, Florida.

Margaret Ingels on the gurney
Loggerhead Marinelife Center
Juno Beach, FL
October 1, 2020


Yesterday was a special at the center as we were able to watch a loggerhead turtle names Margaret Ingels receive treatment. It was fascinating to watch the turtle in the tank and then see the process of draining the tank and moving the turtle into the hospital for treatment. I have many images of the process, but it was fascinating see the care that these turtles are provided in an effort to rehabilitate and then release them back into the wild. 


The Center does great work and Margaret Ingels' progress can be followed on the site at: https://Marinelife.org/turtles/MargaretIngels


-- Bob Doan, Tequesta, Florida

Thursday, October 1, 2020

Happy New Year (FY21)

 


The new U.S. government fiscal year has begun. That is cause for celebration because the year actually began instead of sporting a government shutdown. I am appalled that the Congress waits until just before the deadline to enact legislation to keep the government running. According to news reports, 

Trump signs bipartisan legislation to avoid government shutdown through election - USA Today

And so FY21 begins much the same as many other new fiscal years have begun, under a Continuing Resolution. Continuing Resolutions are evidence that the Congress has failed to do its job and pass a budget to fully fund the government. This continuing resolution keep the government limping along until December 11th. 

Failing to enact a budget is a bipartisan problem. It is probably one of the few things this Congress does (or fails at) from a bipartisan manner. Sadly, this is an annual event. The calendar turns at the same speed and the dates to have the budget completed are fixed in law.

With the election coming, we need to remind our elected representatives of their responsibilities--and I mean on both sides of the aisle!

-- Bob Doan, Tequesta, FL 



Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Debate

 



I had planned to write a review of last evening's debate between the presidential candidates for my blog today, but after watching the spectacle that unfolded in front of the world, I'm not sure that much more needs to be said.

Little of substance was discussed.

Grievances were laid bare. 

Paranoia was on display. 

The most important thing I saw was the difference in character between the two men vying for the highest office in the land and arguable the world. 

Biden says president has made U.S. more divided as Trump interrupts and slings insults - The Washington Post

There were some scary statements.

“Proud Boys — stand back and stand by,” President Trump. Despite what Donald Jr. said this morning, these words are not the same as: "stand down."

And the results? Members of the group used Trump’s “stand back and stand by” comments to create a fresh logo and messaging campaign on social media. A few minutes after the debate, the Proud Boys’ main account on Parler had tweeted a video of Trump’s statement. “YES SIR, PROUD BOYS STANDING BY,” it said. (Trump refused to condemn white supremacists and militia members in presidential debate marked by disputes over race)

It was not a presidential Presidential Debate. 

It was Theater of the Absurd--but we get to choose which direction we want this nation to go.

-- Bob Doan, Tequesta, FL
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