Posted by Alexandra Jump on April 29, 2009
Obama asks Congress for $1.5 billion to combat swine flu…..
According to the Federal Times , our President did indeed go to congress yesterday and asked for more money. Now who is going to argue against money for something as scary as a Pandemic? But really are we about to be in one or is this just hype?
I am sorry to be a bit suspicious about this, but there has been a flu like bug here in Vermont kicking people’s butts for at least 2 weeks. Linda and Judy got it week before last. Matt and Lili’s whole family got it last week. All of Matt’s symptoms were identical to swine flu and he has not been to Mexico recently. Jess over in Maine got it this past week and Bub says a bunch of folks at the hospital have been out with it.
|Epidemics (avail. data)
|Spanish flu (worldwide)
|Asian flu (U.S.)
|Hong Kong flu (U.S.)
|Avian flu (worldwide)
|General flu (U.S.)
|Swine flu (worldwide) “confirmed”
||as of 4/29/2009
Remember the Avian flu scare? High death rate if you got the bug, but less then 500 cases between 1990 and today. Take a look at the general flu information 36 thousand people are reported to die from it yearly.
So I gotta wonder about the severity of this new “outbreak” and the reaction by President Obama.
1.5 Billion no matter how I write it, it is still a lot of money that needs to come from somewhere. According to the national census there are about 304,059,724 Americans.
That translates to rougly 50 bucks per person.
So where is the money going to come from? Either the government will have to take money from some program or perhaps they will just print some more or perhaps they will bond it out to our buddies in China? And who do you throw the money at to fix this?
I am starting to feel sick to my stomach.
Posted in health, politics, pondering | 7 Comments »
Posted by Alexandra Jump on April 27, 2009
I have a routine on Sunday. I take my time mousing thought the Sunday papers while drinking tea and watching Sunday morning news shows. Sometimes I do this after early church, sometimes it is my church. (another blog for another day) For the past few months I have also spent most of Sunday doing my homework for Bill Doyle‘s American Politics class. Class is Monday, late afternoon at Johnson State College.
Prof. Doyle is a real task master. He assigns a chapter in our text that averages 45 pages and an article review from some current event story in a paper. He will also take stories from new papers on line, but the point is to get the class to read the news. In class we have a round the room discussion about the article we chose, why we chose it and our opinion about it. Then generally a guest speaker and to top it off an ” intellectual jamboree” or quiz at the end of the class. Multiple guess of the terms from the text and a three paragraph short reflection essay about the class guest.
Visitors to the class have been pretty impressive, Justice Marilyn Skoglund, John Margolis, and Lamoille counnty legislators Rich Westman and Peter Peltz. Today we are going on our big field trip to the State House then a treat of dinner at Sarducci’s.
Professor Doyle is also Senator Doyle and is sometimes the focus of news stories. This weekend as I was searching for fodder for the class I came across an Times Argus article on Professor Doyle, So Neat to Tweet. Seems like Professor Doyle is as hip as his students. He tweets random blips about what is going on in the state house. I haven’t found any other Vermont legislators twittering, but I did find out that Senator Patrick Leahy twitters.
For the record, Senator Bill Doyle has 129 followers and Senator Patric Leahy has 22. So instead of clipping the article and doing a write up, I thought that I would start a twitter account of my own and post something on Professor Doyle’s twitter page. This blog post will also be part of the write up and I will send him a link.
I think that if he twitts, then this format for reflection should suffice. Perhaps he will leave my grade for today in the comment box.
Posted in friends, humor, politics, pondering, vermont people, writing | Tagged: homework, johnson state college, twitter, vermont, william T doyle | 2 Comments »
Posted by Alexandra Jump on April 26, 2009
Skipper the Red Ear Slider
Lulu is visiting here for a few days cuz of Spring break. I don’t get to see her as much as I would like, so it is a real treat and she brought me Skip as a belated birthday gift. Also, she is a bit done with having a turtle and I agreed to take him. Skip is named after Skipper Dee Dee, Eloise’s turtle. Lulu reminds me of Eloise, but the suburban version. Not that she is perpetually six years old, but she carries the attitude of Eloise, always has.
The cats are quite upset with Skip. Toes has never seen a turtle or tank before and just is not sure what to do with it.
So we have made more accommodations for them. Problem is that now the cat food is in the direct range of Jigger, who is having her own issues and really doesn’t need to eat cat food.
Lulu, is really Elizabeth Hope Major. She was a bit of a cling-on as a baby, so she got the nick name of Rue from Kanga and Rue and then Lu, Louie and Lulu. I have tried to call her Liz recently, because that is the name she goes by in life and I am trying to be more socially acceptable to her. I dislike the name Liz. I prefer Elizabeth, but Lulu is good too.
We went on a road trip yesterday to the Maple Festival in St. Albans. It was a beautiful day, summer like weather. Lots of sugar to eat. Lulu loves sugar and loves all things sugary; she always has.
She is sitting right here next to me as I write. ” I handled my sugar better then you did yesterday”
(she has left the room and is off in the kitchen looking for more sugar, no doubt.)
Posted in humor, kids, places | Tagged: daughters and mothers, maple, pets, sugar, vermont | 1 Comment »
Posted by Alexandra Jump on April 21, 2009
Well, Nixon did something right. Earthday
I was born in 1965 and in the 70′s you knew that you shouldn’t swim in the Charles River because you would get sick. It was polluted. Probably still is in some places. I don’t think I would drink the water straight up.
My grandparents had summer house on Lake Winnipesaukee, in Kelly’s Cove around the corner from Shep Brown’s Boat Basin and close to Loon Island. The loons had pretty much disappeared by that time, but the lake was still really clear and you could easily see the bottom. Let me be clear about the house. It was named The Boulder, and even though it was refereed to as “Camp” and it was uninsulated, it is a three story home with 4 bedrooms, 2 baths and three extra beds up in the attic. There was a work shop, an office, a shed (that had a pantry with fridge and freezer), wine closet, fishing gear, and a two bay garage. Pretty swank camp if you ask me. It is a wonderful place, where I learned to swim, sail, canoe and listen to the wind in the trees. I spent most of my time on or in the water. I loved it.
The house was just off the lake’s shore, maybe 40 ft. and there is a large dock that can have up to 4 boats tied to it. We put the water pipe directly into the lake, pumped it though a regular filter system and drank it. The only time we abstained was when rain came for more then a week, then lake level rose up to the edge of the dock and the lake was cloudy. Maybe once every couple of years . The camp was the last dwelling in the cove, now it shares with 6-8 more houses. The water is not as clear. There are more motor boats and more people on the lake. I would not drink the water right from the lake now.
Back in the 70′s there was less regulation on pollution and our environment suffered. However, there were also less people. Now the lake is packed, not only during the tourist months, but year round. Folks have changed the landscape from rural agricultural/forestry to suburban. The up side is that a great number of people, not simply the upper class, can enjoy beautiful places like the lake. The down side is that with an increase of residents and visitors, the lake is suffering. The loons are back, but I still would not drink the water.
This earth day I will spend time outside listening to the wind in the trees. I choose to live in a rural place, not on a lake cause I can’t afford to, but close by some and with very few neighbors. A good time to take stock of how I am helping or hurting the planet while I am here.
Why don’t you do the same. Helping or Hurting. Pretty good question to ask of oneself every once and a while.
Happy Earth Day.
Posted in pondering | Tagged: camp, childhood, Earth day, lake winnipesaukee, loons, new hamphsire | 2 Comments »
Posted by Alexandra Jump on April 19, 2009
Chet Parsons is a shearer here in Vermont. He was the subject of a Seven Days video clip with Craig Marcotte, another shepherd. The video post was sent around the UVM extension office for a chuckle. We all love Chet, one of our favorite co-workers who brightens up the place when he shows up.
Craig has been my shearer for a bunch of years. He is good at what he does and is able to shear merinos without damage to the animal or the fleeces. there are shearers that don’t like merinos much because of the wrinkly skin. So when you find a good shearer, pay him/her well and keep them.
It is fun to see Craig and Chet on the Video. There are a bunch of other video blogs that have been done with Stuck in Vermont. All pretty interesting. I think I will subscribe.
Posted in black sheep, friends, sheep | Tagged: Chet Parsons, Craig Marcotte, seven days., sheering sheep, Stuck in Vermont, v-blogs, vermont | 2 Comments »