Saturday, July 21, 2018

Legalizing Marijuana in Wisconsin

From The Shepherd Express:

Despite widespread public support, Republicans continues to block reform

Jul. 17, 2018
4:39 p.m.

As a freshman legislator in 2014, Rep. Melissa Sargent (D-Madison) introduced a bill to fully legalize marijuana in Wisconsin. At the time, she found that a lot of residents supported the idea, even if they couldn’t bring themselves to say it out loud. “People would come up to me and quietly say, ‘I’m a fan of the stuff you’re working on’ or ‘Keep up the good work with that one policy,’” Sargent recalls. “It was almost like a wink and a nod. Code words were used.”

Just a few years later, Rep. Sargent has seen a “seismic shift” in public perception. People are much more comfortable talking openly about cannabis, and national polls show a majority of Americans are in favor of its legalization. A 2016 Marquette Law School poll found that 59% of Wisconsinites believe it should be legal and regulated like alcohol.

Eric Marsch, executive director of the Southeastern Wisconsin chapter of NORML (National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws), agrees there is more momentum behind legalization today. Still, he cautions, momentum is not a guarantee. In Wisconsin, the Republican legislative majority continues to resist ideas for reform, and Gov. Scott Walker, a frequent promoter of the “gateway drug” theory, supports prohibition even for medical use. If Wisconsinites don’t vote pro-cannabis candidates into office, Marsch says, legalization is unlikely to happen anytime soon. “When we talk to people now, they say, ‘It’s coming soon, we’re going to get there,’” Marsch says. “But we’re only going to ‘get there’ if people push for it. It’s not just going to happen on its own.”

Read more:

The crack about Republicans blocking reform fails to mention that when the Democrats were in charge the same thing happened.  I am so sick of this political war.  

Jeremy Ryan

A little more than a week ago, a strange email appeared in the inboxes 
of several media outlets. 
Someone using the address was claiming that 
rap star Eminem — whose real name is Marshall Mathers — had endorsed 
Jeremy Ryan in his quixotic bid for Congress. 
Ryan, better known as the Capitol protester “Segway” Jeremy Ryan, is 
running as a Republican for the seat now held by U.S. House Speaker 
Paul Ryan (no relation). 
His campaign is as outlandish as his protest tactics — he’s posted 
“Drunk High Politics” videos on YouTube, in which he discusses 
politics while clearly inebriated. 
In a press release under the Shady Records logo, Eminem purportedly 
made his first political endorsement. “Our country is in a state of 
crisis,” the release quotes Eminem. “Jeremy Ryan is a rare candidate 
so undeniably different that I felt compelled to endorse his 

Ella’s Deli

Ella’s Deli still has not found a buyer, but its carousel has. Epic, 
the medical software giant, has purchased the carousel as well as many 
of the whimsical toys that filled the East Washington Avenue 
restaurant for years. 
“Helping to preserve part of this iconic Madison landmark was an easy 
decision and we look forward to ensuring the carousel and creative 
collection find a happy home on the Epic campus,” says Kara 
Rettenmund, of Epic administration, in an emailed statement. “We’re 
grateful to Ken, Judy, and their staff for over four decades of family 
fun, good food, and priceless memories for all who walked through 
their doors.” 
The carousel was built in 1927 in Leavenworth, Kansas. It’s been part 
of Ella’s since the late 1980s.

Chicago Named The ‘Rat Capital’ Of The U.S., Study Says

CHICAGO (CBS) — A new study names Chicago the rat capital of the U.S. 
According to a study by the apartment search service “Rent Hop,” the 
city received 50,963 rat complaints last year – more than any other 
city in the country. 
New York came in a distant second place, followed by Washington, D.C., 
and Boston. 
The study also found the number of rat complaints jumped 55% since 2014. 
Logan Square, Englewood, and West Ridge topped the list for most rat 
complaints called in to 3-1-1. 
The study claims “when comparing the number of complaints per 100,000 
residents, Chicago topped the list with 1876.09 complaints per 100,000 
Most of the neighborhoods with a higher concentration of rat 
complaints coincide with the neighborhoods with a higher concentration 
of dog poop. 
Neighborhoods in Downtown Chicago such as The Loop, Gold Coast, and 
River North have much fewer rat complaints than the other 
neighborhoods. Printers Row, Riverdale, and Oakland are the 
neighborhoods with the lowest volume of rat complaints.

Open Blog - Weekend

Hope yours is a good one.

Friday, July 20, 2018

Four for Fridays!

Good morning everyone I hope you enjoyed the week. I just can't believe it is Friday already it feels like I had just done Four for Fridays. When Drew gets off of work today we have to go up to Oshkosh to pick up the Grandkids. Yes they are going to be down here for a week and that means no naps for Grandpa. Here are your questions.

1) When was the last time you ever had to babysit?

2) Do you like to spend time with kids?

3) Would you call spending time with your Grandkids babysitting or having fun with them?

4) Do you buy the kids things to get them to like you or just spend time and talk with them and do things that they like?

Have a great weekend!

Open Blog - Friday

Enjoy yourself.

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Hellcat KILLER! | 1953 Belair Sleeper

CT Dallas did not disappoint with the old school muscle this year! Not 
only did this 1953 Belair THROW DOWN, but it does so in sleeper 
status. Besides the intercooler out front, the old green color with 
the patina on top along with the old smoothie wheels, this car is very 
unsuspecting. It was a blast to watch this thing not only take down 
TWO Hellcats, but an R35 GTR as well! The cherry on top to this video 
was a race between the Belair and an old Hemi Cuda that just happened 
to be one of the closest races we have filmed! Cannot wait to see this 
car later this year!

10 Ways The Media Manipulates You

Open Blog - Thursday

The last words of a man who was about to die in the electric chair: "Beam me up."

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Dear Madame Zoltar

Hello my reasons for living!  How are you?  Isn't the weather grand?  I wish the rest of the summer would be like this.  Alas, I'm sure we'll see more hot and humid days.  My electric bill jumped $20 because of my a/c use.  I was expecting worse.

We've gone from near flood conditions to drought-like conditions.  This is so typical of  a Wisconsin spring-summer.  Junior and Señor Zanza are constantly moving the hose and sprinkler to keep things moist.  My tomato plants look spindly.  Maybe I'll invest in an underground sprinkler system.  That would save my boys so much trouble.  And then my grass wouldn't turn brown in August.  I don't know, who has money for stuff like this?

Surprisingly, Mr. Trump has turned out to be a friend to North Korea and Russia.  Maybe because they govern the way he would like to.  Mr. Trump seems especially enamored of Putin, the Russian bear.  There is a stink brewing over the "Helsinki humiliation."  Mr. Trump lies and lies, changing his words like wind-blown leaves.  It's impossible to determine the truth anymore.  That's the way Mr. Trump wants it.

On the local front, we're making resolutions and signing letters of intent, reporting violations to Mr. OrbsCorbs.  We're very busy, yet we accomplish absolutely nothing.  Mr. Mayor Cory Mason likes this kind of busy work.  It makes everyone appear to be productive, whether they are or not.  At the Journal Times, such nonsense wins awards.  It is what's wrong with America.

What's right with America:

No, I'm not really that hardcore about our country.  I am very glad to be able to live in the greatest country on Earth.  We have a ton of problems, but we are free and powerful.  God bless America.

And, God please keep America from mesing in other countries' poltics.

And, God thank You for the wonderful readers and other regulars that this blog has.  I love them all.

It's supposed to get hot again, so take it easy.  Stay hydrated and out of the sun's way.  Whether driving or playing, keep an eye out for the little ones.  They don't know any better.

Please donate: 
If you don't like PayPal, send me a note at and I'll send you my street address so you can send a check or money order.  Thank you.

Open Blog - Wednesday

Wow what?

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

пошёл на хуй

From The Shepherd Express:

Jul. 17, 2018
4:24 p.m.

I’m Art Kumbalek and man oh man manischewitz what a world, ain’a? So listen, considering the recent Helstinki scummit between the two dear world leaders, I’m thinking it’s past time to start learning the Russian language since it’s got to be only a matter of time until U.S. citizens are required to speak the Slavic tongue. Hey, maybe learning Russian would be the thing to do to fill the hours of your waning summertime besides stirring up another Tom Collins and cranking the AC, what the fock.
I’ve already started, as you can see by the headline to this here quasi-essay. As close as I can figure, it’s the Russian for “fock off” and/or “go fock yourself”—which would’ve been the first words out of my mouth had I been in the audience at the post-summit press conference, I kid you not.
Anyways, it’s been too pissing hot this summer to groan and moan even for a guy like me, a guy who practically, but not quite, makes a living at it. But you got to stay positive, so I hear. After all, we still do live in the greatest city in the upper Midwest—even if it feels like it got relocated to Missis-focking-sippi. So instead of a regular essay, I thought I’d trot out a list I provide for the readers once in a while of “don’ts” to help ensure that the remaining days of your summertime are safe and maybe even tolerable, what the fock, and you’re welcome.
Not Quite a Hundred Things Not To Do the Rest of Summertime
Do Not:
Eat your shorts.
Eat my shorts.
Have a buddy putting all the cocktails on his tab and at some point during the evening before bar time you say, “No thanks, I’ve had enough.”
Watch any movie with a “Dame” so-and-so somebody in it unless you got the insomnia bad.
Get stinking drunk in a boat out on the water and I’ll tell you why. I knew these three guys years ago who went out fishing along with a couple, three cases of ice-cold bottled beer. So they’re out there all goddamn day catching nothing but one hell of a buzz under the hot sun. At one point, one of the tipsy trio stands up to take a leak, loses his balance and flips head-over-heels right over the side of the boat into the water and starts to sink.
The other two bozos are so blasted that they don’t even notice their buddy has jumped ship until maybe a half-hour later. No sooner do they realize that they’re no longer three-men-in-a-tub but two, do they then dive into the water and frantically grope around for the missing mariner. Eventually, one of the loopy lifeguards grabs ahold of his overboard buddy down deep, hauls him into the boat and commences with the mouth-to-mouth.
“Jesus H. Christ!” he says, recoiling in revulsion. “I don’t remember Corky’s breath stinking to the high heaven like this, do you?” And the other guy says, “Fock no. And not only that, I don’t remember him wearing that snowmobile suit, either!” Ba-ding!
Tell your girlfriend you can’t take her kids to the church festival ’cause you got a hot date with her sister.
Forget to tip.
Make an appointment for a routine medical checkup. It’s a no-win situation. If you’re feeling OK and you go to the doctor’s and he says you’re OK, what have you gained? Not a focking thing, but you certainly have lost time and money. Now, if you go and the doc says, “Uh-oh, we got a problem here,” well, now not only do you have a problem but you’re bound to be depressed about it, and who in their right mind needs that kind of combo? You tell me.
Walk into a biker bar and shout, “Hey, which one of you candy asses used to own the wuss Electra Glide out front I just backed into with my Chevy Volt?”
Order a salad instead of a steak.
Find a pair of bum’s underwear on the street and wear them before laundering.
Forget about performing at least one good deed daily.
Get sick without health insurance.
Vote Republican.
Just stand there.
Look back.
Hold the curtain, here’s one nice DO for you’s:
Go to the Festa Italiana down there by the Summerfest this weekend. (Or as some wags would describe it, not unlike the way I have many, many times, the “Let’s See How Many Over-the-Hill Guys Named Johnny We Can Get to Sing ‘New York, New York’ Fest.”) They’ll have everything molto bene you could possibly want down there. History? Fashion? You want fashion history? Hey, if you ever wondered where the leisure suit went after it died, you come to Festa, so forget about it ’cause I’m Art Kumbalek and I told you so.


Dear City of Racine Alderpsersons, 
Just provided for your information - as Mayor Cory Mason has been a 
force, and instrumental in forcing the Foxconn project forward and 
expects to reap a whirlwind. 
DOJ Validates Concerns Regarding Mt. Pleasant Open Meetings and Free 
Speech Violations: a must READ - 
“The DOJ guidance made it very clear it is unlikely the actions of Mt. 
Pleasant would be upheld in a court of law or by the Attorney General, 
but village officials were cautioned against restricting public 
comment about agenda items during a publicly noticed comment period,” 
Gallaher continued. “We expect a formal apology to the residents who 
had the right to speak and were denied. We also expect change.” 
“Mt. Pleasant has an embarrassing history of violating state policies 
on meeting notifications, failing to approve and publish minutes of 
official actions, and operating with little to no accountability. This 
behavior must end. We are absolutely willing to take this village to 
court in order to bring about real institutional change.” Gallaher 
concludes, “it’s their choice, they can continue to be an embarrassing 
example of how local government should not work or they can learn to 
be better.” 
Here is a publicity piece from Wiseye.Org to showcase the Foxconn 
project. While the producer does an okay job on challenging some 
points, he doesn’t go nearly far enough to fact check Jonathan and he 
just lets other falsehoods slide. 
And now Cory Mason & CO. is going to demolish those mega-million 
$$$$$$ buildings at Machinery Row?!!! 
General Incompetence is in charge - along with Graft, Corruption, Lies 
& Collusion. 
Tim & Cindy 

Racine County Executive Jonathan Delagrave is Called Out by MTP Residents for Potential Malfeasance and Lies

Questions For the County Executive

Dear County Board, 
Residents of Mount Pleasant have some very serious concerns regarding 
actions taken by County Executive Jonathan Delagrave  - and the claims 
he has made/actions he has taken. He does not appear to want to 
address those claims - taking the position that everyone is in 
agreement and that all actions taken so far have been lawful and 
Further - Politicians such as Racine County Executive Jonathan 
Delagrave (and others) continue to push the boundaries of what are the 
ACTUAL conditions to which Foxconn is required to act to comply within 
the scope of their negotiated agreement. 
The lies and deception from the County Government need to STOP. 
Concerns of MTP Residents need to be properly and legally addressed. 
Racine County appears to be absent the rule of law and acting beyond 
the scope of their authority/duties - and it appears that Governor 
Scott Walker and Representative Robin  give those actions the color of 
being legal by glossing over abuses of process/law taken by local 
officials. This practice needs to end. 
Read for yourself the grievances of MTP Residents and the inflated 
claims of Public Officials at: 
Tim & CIndy 

Open Blog - Tuesday

Shine on!

Monday, July 16, 2018

DOJ Validates Concerns Regarding Mt. Pleasant Open Meetings and Free Speech Violations

Press Release: DOJ Validates Concerns Regarding Mt. Pleasant Open Meetings and Free Speech Violations


“ Community group files complaint for censoring residents living in Foxconn area at two public meetings.”

MT. PLEASANT, WI JULY 16, 2018 – During a publicly noticed meeting of the Mt. Pleasant Community Development Authority (CDA) on April 17, 2018, village residents were prevented from speaking during public comment about the redevelopment plan for Foxconn, the only item on the agenda and one which affects the land and homes where these same residents live.

When the public comment period began, CDA Chairman Rob Richardson announced that no public comments would be heard regarding items listed on the meeting agenda. Richardson asked each of the dozen or more residents who had signed up to speak (by filling out forms provided by the village which said they could speak on “any item”) if they had something to say about a subject NOT on the agenda.

Read more:


A Better Mt. Pleasant 
No one knows these issues better than Kim Mahoney. 
Kim Mahoney - July 13 at 1:18 PM · 
Here is a publicity piece from Wiseye.Org to showcase the Foxconn 
project. While the producer does an okay job on challenging some 
points, he doesn't go nearly far enough to fact check Jonathan and he 
just lets other falsehoods slide. 
First - we now know that Mount Pleasant was a "serious contender" to 
get the Foxconn development as early as February 2017. In the 
meantime, they allowed people to put up pools and big pole barns. 
Never once did they solicit input from Mount Pleasant residents to 
find out if they would want to foot the bill or give up land for this 
massive project. They made the decision for us. 
Second - Jonathan says the scope of the project was initially 500 
acres, but has more than doubled. Doubled? The three project areas 
take up 2,900 acres and that doesn't even include the North Area. They 
have acquired most of the land already but have no set plans for Areas 
II and III. Many of those people could have remained in their homes 
for the next 5-10 years. 
Third - he says Racine County residents are "almost universally 
positive" about the project. Really? He must not be talking to the 
same people I am talking to. People are pissed about being forced out 
of their homes, they are worried about the amount of money we have 
promised to give Foxconn, they are doubtful the 13,00 jobs will 
materialize, they are concerned about the air pollution, water 
pollution, storm water runoff and Lake Michigan diversion. Jonathan - 
you are obviously not in touch with Racine County residents or you are 
Fourth - the water diversion is violating the Great Lakes Compact 
because the water being diverted will be used for manufacturing, not 
primarily residential. You are setting a terrible precedent. 
Fifth - what is causing the air pollution/excess ozone emissions is 
irrelevant and to bring it up is ridiculous. You completely ignore the 
fact that the pollution already exists and it is harmful to our 
health. Now you are adding another major contributor that will exceed 
the maximum allowable limits for certain air pollution emissions. This 
goes to show you care nothing about the health of Racine County 
residents, especially those susceptible to breathing problems. 
Sixth - you keep talking about the jobs - the up to 13,000 "middle 
class high paying" jobs. The average job is promised to be $54,000. 
Can you support your family on $54,000? Nobody in Wisconsin can 
support a family for that income. And most of the workers will only be 
making $30,000, not $54,000. And, they do not anticipate achieving 
that number until the year 2040 - 22 years from now. You make it seem 
as if those jobs will magically appear as soon as Foxconn opens its 
doors in 2020. 
Seventh and last - I appreciate you saying that you do not believe 
eminent domain should be used to acquire property that will be given 
to Foxconn but you continue to spout the falsehood that 95% of the 
property acquisitions thus far have been "voluntary." Each and every 
homeowner was threatened with eminent domain. If they refuse to sell, 
the Village will take their property under eminent domain. When 
someone literally has no choice, it is the opposite of the definition 
of "voluntary."

Dick Cavett with Jimmy Hoffa October 31, 1973

1970 AMC Gremlin Dealer Promo Film

Doctors: Removal of Dildo from Sean Hannity's Ass will Require Surgery

Conservative talk show host Sean Hannity was rushed to the emergency room early Sunday morning with a dildo firmly entrenched in his anus.  Attempts to remove the ten-inch long device using local anesthetics were unsuccessful.  That's when doctors decided that surgery was the only way to go.  Mr. Hannity was not happy with the news and reportedly callled medical personnel "libtards."  They in turn reminded Mr. Hannity that they didn't have to accept him as a patient.  He could seek redress elsewhere.  That shut Mr. Hannity up. We'll let you know the results of that surgery as soon as we hear anything.  God bless Sean Hannity.

Happy Birthday OrbsCorbs

Have a great day!  Don't "read" too much.

Open Blog - Monday

Thank you, Snoopy!

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Medical Marijuana a Hit With Seniors

HealthDay Reporter
THURSDAY, July 5, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Seniors are giving rave reviews for medical marijuana.
In a new survey, those who turned to it for treating chronic pain reported it reduced pain and decreased the need for opioid painkillers.
Nine out of 10 liked it so much they said they'd recommend medical pot to others.
"I was on Percocet and replaced it with medical marijuana. Thank you, thank you, thank you," said one senior.
Another patient put it this way: "It [medical marijuana] is extremely effective and has allowed me to function in my work and life again. It has not completely taken away the pain, but allows me to manage it."
Study co-author Dr. Diana Martins-Welch said, "The impact of medical marijuana was overwhelmingly positive. Medical marijuana led them to taking less medications overall -- opioids and non-opioids -- and they had better function and better quality of life." Martins-Welch is a physician in the division of geriatric and palliative medicine at Northwell Health, in Great Neck, N.Y.
The biggest complaint the researchers heard about medical marijuana was the cost. "It's an out-of-pocket expense. Insurance doesn't cover it because it's federally illegal," Martins-Welch explained.
As for unwelcome side effects, Martins-Welch said sedation was what she heard about the most. "A lot of people don't like feeling sleepy," she said.
It's also important to work with your doctor to find the right dose, since pain experts say that too little or too much doesn't ease pain.
Thirty-one states have some type of medical marijuana law on the books, according to the National Conference of State Legislators.
"Every state has its own laws, like what a qualifying condition is. There are a lot of differences. And you can't take a product from one state and cross another state line," Martins-Welch said.
According to federal law, medical marijuana is still illegal in the United States. "There are legal fears. Some practitioners worry that the DEA [U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration] might come after them," she added.
Medical marijuana is different than just picking up some pot and smoking it.
"The goal with medical marijuana is to find the dose that gives a therapeutic benefit without a high, or slowing reaction time or causing sedation," Martins-Welch said. "To find that right dose, we start low and go slow."
In fact, it's important to work with a doctor because there's a "therapeutic window" with THC, the active component in marijuana that causes the high, according to Dr. Mark Wallace, a board member of the American Pain Society.
If you get a dose that's within that window, the pain is relieved. If you get too little, you won't get pain relief, and if you go over the therapeutic window, pain is actually worsened, Wallace explained.
The study included a 20-question survey of nearly 150 seniors who had used medical marijuana for chronic pain. The seniors had received their medical marijuana from dispensaries in New York or Minnesota.
The average age of the seniors was 61 to 70, and 54 percent were female. Many (45 percent) used a vaporized oil in an e-cigarette device. Twenty-eight percent used a medical marijuana pill.
Twenty-one percent said they used medical marijuana daily, while 23 percent said they used it twice a day. Another 39 percent said they used it more than twice a day, the researchers noted.
About half the time, medical marijuana had been recommended by a doctor. One-quarter of the seniors decided to try medical marijuana at the urging of a friend or family member. Almost all -- 91 percent -- would recommend medical marijuana to someone else.
When asked how medical marijuana affected their pain levels, the seniors reported going from a 9 (on a pain scale of zero to 10) down to 5.6 a month after starting the medical marijuana.
Wallace said he's seen many positive results from the use of medical marijuana in his patients.
"The geriatric population is my fastest-growing patient population. With medical marijuana, I'm taking more patients off opioids," he said.
"There's never been a reported death from medical marijuana, yet there are 19,000 deaths a year from prescription opioids. Medical cannabis is probably safer than a lot of drugs we give," Wallace said.
Medical marijuana can also stimulate appetite, Martins-Welch said, which is a "godsend for cancer patients," though extra eating may not be a welcome side effect for everyone.
Martins-Welch said it's best to discuss potential drug interactions with your doctor, but it's usually OK to mix marijuana and opioids. She said she'd caution against mixing medical marijuana with alcohol.
The study findings were presented recently at the American Geriatrics Society meeting in Orlando, Fla. Studies presented at meetings are typically viewed as preliminary until they've been published in a peer-reviewed journal.
More information
Learn more about medical marijuana from the U.S. National Institute on Drug Abuse.
SOURCES: Diana Martins-Welch, M.D., physician, department of medicine, division of geriatric and palliative care medicine, Northwell Health, Great Neck, N.Y.; Mark Wallace, M.D., board member, American Pain Society, and professor, anesthesiology, University of California, San Diego, and program director, UCSD Center for Pain Medicine; May 3, 2018, presentation, American Geriatrics Society meeting, Orlando, Fla.
Last Updated:

Black Sabbath - Symptom of the Universe - 1975 - with lyrics

Wittgenstein's Lion 
In Philosophical Investigations Wittgenstein famously said that "if a 
lion could speak, we could not understand him". This seems 
contradictory, because of course if he is speaking, it seems like we 
would understand him. But for Wittgenstein, the words themselves don't 
so much convey meaning, but express intent that is confined within a 
particular situation that takes place within our shared culture and 
experience. So, for example, if a surgeon is performing surgery and 
said "nurse, scalpel", it isn't simple the two words together that 
convey the meaning of the surgeon wanting the nurse to hand him a 
scalpel, it is their shared knowledge of what a surgery is, and what 
is expected under those circumstances. If, for example, the nurse and 
surgeon are later at a company dinner, and the surgeon says "nurse, 
salt", in the same cadence, this will be understood to be a joke, 
parodying the former circumstance. Nothing about the words themselves 
really conveys this, but only the shared world that both the nurse and 
surgeon occupy. This shared world is necessary for any language to 
function, and learning a language is not only learning the words, but 
the world in which we are expected to use the words. 
On the hand, if a lion could suddenly speak English, it wouldn't 
matter much, because the world that the lion exists in is so divorced 
from ours, that his expressions, desires, and intents could still 
never be communicated. The lion doesn't know what a surgery is, or a 
dinner party, or a joke for that matter. Likewise, we don't know what 
sort world the lion occupies, so words would be useless. This 
phenomenon isn't as outlandish as it might sound at first, and even 
occurs frequently among humans. For example, I had two coworkers who 
played World of Warcraft constantly, and would talk about it at lunch. 
They could speak to each other for ten minutes, in English, and I 
wouldn't be able to decipher a single sentence. It isn't because I 
didn't understand the meaning of the words, but because I had no 
ability to relate the words to a situation or world that I knew, so 
the meaning was lost on me. If I can't understand a conversation about 
a video game I haven't played, even when I've played similar games, 
how can I be expected to understand a conversation between lions? 

"Judge Constantine retiring after 22 years on the bench"

RACINE — After 22 years as a Racine County Circuit Court judge, Judge Charles Constantine has decided it’s time to step down.

“To me, it’s like you are a nice rock on the edge of Lake Michigan, with waves brushing up against you,” Constantine said. “At first, the waves don’t seem to have any impact at all, but as the waves keep coming, over and over again, you get worn down.”

Constantine originally intended to finish out his term, which ends in 2020. But after the death of a brother and with the birth of his grandchildren, Constantine said he decided that Sept. 5 was the right time for him to retire.

“I just felt like I was starting to lose my fastball,” Constantine said. “I felt I wasn’t as engaged as I used to be, and I was in the process of not being able to do the job to the standard that I think it should be done. This is a very important job. You are dealing with people’s lives … and you have to be fully engaged.”

Read more:

"With 'zero tolerance,' new strain on already struggling immigration courts"

Loren Elliott/Reuters
In a federal courtroom in the border city of McAllen, Texas, two weeks ago, 74 migrants waited as Judge J. Scott Thacker confirmed their names and countries of origin. Tired and nervous, the migrants were wearing the clothes they had been arrested in, translation headsets, and ankle chains that clinked as some of them fidgeted.
After having their rights and potential punishments explained to them, Judge Thacker asked the seven rows of migrants – mostly from Honduras, El Salvador, or Guatemala – how they wanted to plead. “Culpable,” they all answered. Judge Hacker sentenced almost all of them, row by row, to time already served and a $10 fine.
At one point, a man from Honduras separated from his son explained why they had traveled to the United States. Thacker listened, then addressed the whole room.
“Ladies and gentlemen, I am not a [specialist] immigration judge; I am not in the immigration system,” he said. “Once you enter the immigration system you can explain your situation to them.”
In immigration court in San Antonio, a few hours north, Judge Charles McCullough is working through cases from the summer of 2017.
Over three hours, he moves smoothly through hearings for a dozen people. One man accepts voluntary departure to Mexico, but then things get complicated. One case has to be postponed because of irregular paperwork. Another sparks a brief debate over whether a US Supreme Court decision last year means it can be thrown out. His final hearing is a mother and two children from Colombia, accused of overstaying their visas. He schedules their next hearing for September.
Staff shortages and an ever-increasing caseload have been problems for years, compounded by successive administrations using the courts to achieve political and policy goals. Cognizant of the burden the immigration court system is under, and the additional strain its stated goal of having zero unauthorized immigration into the US would represent, the Trump administration is going to great lengths to try and streamline immigration court proceedings.
Unlike every other court in the country, immigration courts are part of the executive, not judicial, branch. And the judges who staff those courts are not judges in the common sense, but are employees of the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR), a wing of the Justice Department. Thus, Attorney General Jeff Sessions has significant authority to reshape how the courts operate.
The changes the Trump administration is engineering, however, have experts and former immigration judges concerned that the immigration court system could be even more burdened.
“All those weaknesses, those weak points, are being highlighted by the measures this administration is taking,” says Ashley Tabaddor, an immigration judge in Los Angeles and president of the National Association of Immigration Judges.
“The immigration court system is designed to protect the … founding principles of our American democracy,” she adds. “If you don’t care, then that’s the first brick that’s being taken out of the foundation.”
One example of how that system is being strained further is the estimated 3,000 children still separated from the their families by the “zero tolerance” immigration policy. Trump administration officials told a judge Friday they couldn’t comply with a June court order to reunite children under 5 with their families by Tuesday. (Children over 5 are to be reunited by July 26.) At least 19 parents of those children already have been deported without them, according to reports.
“[A] guy that shows up here every day and does this every day has to find hope somewhere.... I’m hoping that maybe the moral outrage associated with what’s happened will be the thing that finally — the catalyst that finally makes us look hard at this immigration system that we all agree needs to be fixed,” Judge Robert Brack of the US District Court of New Mexico told “PBS Newshour.”
720,000-case backlog
On the day he retired, June 30, 2016, Paul Schmidt was scheduling cases through the end of 2022. In a system with a roughly 720,000-case backlog, according to Syracuse University’s Transactional Records Clearinghouse, it wasn’t an unusual situation. The backlog has been steadily growing for decades, something Mr. Schmidt blames on recent administrations using the courts to respond to urgent political crises.

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Makes You Wonder About "Down There"

It's coming - nothing can be done

It IS. 
As the world continues to burn energy like there is no tomorrow, 
global oil and gas discoveries fell to another low in 2017.  And to 
make matters worse, world oil investment has dropped 45% from its peak 
in 2014.  If the world oil industry doesn’t increase its capital 
expenditures significantly, we are going to hit the Energy Cliff much 
sooner than later. 
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