Wednesday, August 2, 2017

I'm Back With - Miscellany - Tonight

Well, Pony Penning is over for 2017 - the major part, anyway.  Fall round-up will be October 13 and 14th, when folks who purchased younger foals will return to pick them up, and the veterinarian will give everyone another quick check-up.  I don't how how much money the raffle tickets for King Neptune brought in, but the 62 foals sold (including the ten designated Buy Backs)  brought in $209,900.  It was also reported that other items auctioned - art, photographs, arts and crafts, T-shirts, etc. - brought in another $3,300.  Pony Penning was successful this year.
    I have up-dated the previous post with the auctioned foals information twice; today it was to add the 24 names that the youngsters have been given by their new owners. Still waiting to hear what the CLG decides to name their colt and filly, as well as a few other Buy Backs.  The names of purchased and removed foals are slowly percolating through Chincoteague Pony lovers.   I'll post them as I learn of them.
    One of the dogs that I care for crossed over the Rainbow Bridge Monday evening.  I'm pretty sure her owner had her put down.  She was a delightful 12-year-old mutt, named Tess.  She bounded like a gazelle, and pounced like a fox on prey.  She began having seizures around Christmas.  The owner believes in holistic medicine and would not put the dog on "normal" seizure medication until 8 weeks ago.  The medication made the dog unsteady on her feet, gave her a tremendous appetite, and caused her to drool excessively when sleeping.  The dog had good days and bad days, and was slowly getting adjusted to the medication.  The owner's daughter and I have been the dog's most active care-givers, as the owner has been "home" only six weeks since Christmas.  I was notified by a Facebook posting that the dog had "left us."  I will miss that happy, romping, black girl for a long, long time.  Goodbye, Tessa.
    I laughed out loud today when I read the news that officials on the University of Colorado campus here in Boulder sent Tweet and e-mail alerts to all students that a "rare" and "extremely dangerous" badger had been seen on campus.  A number was given to call in sightings, and students were told to avoid the badger at all costs....   What a laugh!   If a badger is protecting its' young, or if it's cornered, will fight to protect itself (or its' young).  It does not rampage about, causing mayhem wherever it goes.  When the Department of Wildlife was contacted about the message, they laughed.   Badgers are usually seen a little farther north and west, on the edges of Estes Park, and in the Rocky Mountain National Forest.  They are somewhat unusual around Boulder, but CU sure made a fuss over nothing.
    OK - I'm going back to politics for the moment.   Since I started this blog, I have had comments made in many foreign languages.  If it's a language I recognize, I translate it.  But when I last worked in Washington, DC, for the EPA, I was still getting weekly visits from FBI agents to view my folder of "odd/unusual" comments.  Once I began this blog, I hate to say it, but I routinely delete any comments written to me in Cyrillic or a Middle Eastern language. Since spring and summer of 2016, I have had an upswing in the number of comments in those languages.  So I was interested in learning about Russian bots and how they grab certain words and send "disinformation" to the writer. - I wrote a blog on this s few months ago.
    Today a friend, and several of his colleagues, who have worked for the US government in the past in the area of cyber security, have opened a new website called Hamilton 68.  It does not show the response on the internet - but it shows how the bots, implemented by Russia and their comrades, react to words on Twitter.   If you ever use Twitter, look at this site!   Once you get there, there is a button for first-time users that explains pretty much anything you want to know - the site can be viewed at:   I highly recommend at least one visit - the information is mind-boggling.

   Two other political items, and I'll be quiet for the night.  My jaw dropped tonight when I heard that the current President wants to have the Commander of the US forces in Afghanistan, Army General John Nicholson, fired by his Pentagon Generals.  He stated, "We aren't winning."  And went on to ask why we haven't demanded a share of the $1 trillion in mineral wealth that Afghanistan owns for "US aid and assistance."  After the President left the meeting, a shouting match was overheard between Steve Bannon, the White House chief strategist, and H. R. McMaster, the White House National Security Adviser.  - But then I remembered that the President had said something along those lines during his campaign....   I had no idea that America expected Afghanistan to pay us for a war against ISIL and the Taliban waged in their own country.
    The other thing is the new immigration laws and limits that the 45th Administration wants to impose.  Not only does this group want to ban all immigrants of Muslim faith, they now want to decrease the number of legal immigrants each year.  The new immigration laws they are calling for will limit legal immigration by 50% over a period of 10 years by reducing the number of relatives allowed to join families later.  They will cut refugee numbers to 50,000 people per year.  They will end the diversity visa lottery that currently allows 50,000 from under-represented countries to receive a green card.  And they will most highly favor those immigrants who speak English, have skills to raise the economy, and who can financially support themselves and their families upon arrival in the United States.
    In a televised news conference today, White House adviser Stephen Miller was presenting the above outlines to an array of reporters, when Jim Acosta, a CNN representative, quoted the first few lines from the poem on the base of the Statue of Liberty on Ellis Island in New York City's harbor: "Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses..."
* The Statue of Liberty, actually named Liberty Enlightening the World, was a gift from the country of France to help us remember their assistance during the Revolutionary War.  Edouard de Laboulaye, a French political thinker and an abolitionist, proposed the idea of the statue - and made certain that a broken shackle and chain were placed at her right foot to show that America had broken the shackles of oppression and tyranny.  American people raised the money for the shipping of the gigantic statue for more than 6 years, and she was unveiled and dedicated on Thursday, 28 October 1886. *
    After Acosta spoke those lines, Miller stated, "The poem you were referring to was added later. It's not actually part of the original Statue of Liberty."  Miller went on to say that the statue is a "symbol of American liberty lighting the world" and suggested that it had little to do with immigrants of any kind.  This has caused a huge amount of protests today.
  *While waiting for the statue to be assembled in New York harbor, writers and authors asked Emma Lazarus, a poet and descendant of Jewish immigrants, to write a sonnet that would be sold at auction to raise money for the gigantic pedestal that was needed for the statue to rest upon.  Emma Lazarus wrote "The New Colossus" on 2 November 1883 inspired by the plight of immigrants and refugees, and her own experiences in New York City.  The poem appeared in The New York Times and in Joseph Pulitzer's New York World.  Lazarus died in 1887 and her poem was forgotten.
    In 1901, Georgina Schuler, a friend of Emma's, found a book containing the poem, and began an effort to resurrect the work, have it inscribed on a plaque, and placed on the statue's pedestal.  The sonnet reads:
  "Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore."

I hope all of you have a wonderful August!

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