Monday, April 22, 2013

Voters tell Rep. Nunnelee 'right to keep and bear arms' is the issue they care most about

    Rep. Alan Nunnelee just sent me an email asking me to subscribe to his e-newsletter and to identify what national issue is most important to me.
    Naturally I chose illegal immigration. After I selected my choice I was allowed to see the choices others had made. And the winner is: "Protecting the 2nd amendment right to keep and bear arms," coming in at a whopping 41.59 percent. Ten issues are listed; the next-highest vote-getter was "Ending out of control spending," with 13.27 percent. Also of note is that "Strengthening our armed forces" is rated most important by only 1.77 percent of respondents. Are Mississippians slowly drifting into the Rand Paul camp?
    (The above numbers are not static, and will change as each person signs up for the newsletter and casts a vote. So the above graph is merely a snapshot.)
    The list is certainly skewed towards Republicans, although anyone from either party who has made it onto Nunnelee's mailing list surely got the survey. And the responses go a long way towards understand why congressmen from rural states simply won't budge on gun control.
    I know Rep. Nunnelee is listening to the voters. But is Sen. Wicker?

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Lady Liberty 1885 blogger discovered identity of ricin suspect through use of Google, Facebook

    The Lady Liberty 1885 blogger may have discovered the identity of the suspect in the mailing of ricin to Congressman Wicker through the use of Google before the police did.
    In a blog post that was written yesterday but not posted until an arrest was made, the blogger tells how she used Google to track down the identity of Elvis impersonator Paul Kevin Curtis through a doctor's website and then Facebook.
Profile photo from
Paul Kevin Curtis' Facebook page
    One thing I found interesting is the photo that she took from Curtis' Facebook page showing him next to a bumper sticker on his car which declares him to be a "Christian" and a "Democrat." We've all been hearing speculation that this would be the work of some Republican, but now that the suspect is a Democrat, get ready for the sound of crickets chirping.
    The blog post is an interesting read. In reading Lady Liberty's blog I saw that one of her recent posts dealt with the problems of murders being committed by people in need of mental health services. Her views mirror my own. We should not have to wait until a person becomes violent before forcing them into mental health treatment.
    I'm adding the Lady Liberty 1885 blog to my blog roll on the left side of this page.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Jackson Jambalaya: HUD wants to bring Section 8 to a home near you

Jackson Jambalaya: HUD wants to bring Section 8 to a home near you:  The Wall Street Journal opined about some HUD social engineering and neighborhoods. Yup, Assistant Secretary and his HUD minions want to make sure your neighbors meet their criteria...

Kingfish at Jackson Jambalaya has an interesting post about how the government is working hard to destroy neighborhoods by forcing cities to rezone upscale neighborhoods for Section 8 housing and by attempting to force landlords to accept Section 8 vouchers, even though by law the program is supposed to be voluntary. Read it all by clicking on the link above.

A study in Memphis found that the city's crime wave in recent years was directly related to the sprinkling of Section 8 residents through the city. The Atlantic had an outstanding article on this, called America's Murder Mystery.

Now the Obama administration wants to host a Murder Mystery Party in your neighborhood!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

It's far to early to start playing the blame game for the Boston Marathon bombing.

    There will be time to make political hay, if you will, on the recent tragedy at the Boston Marathon. One of the goals of our political system is to act to stop bad things from happening, and that includes making a bit of political hay out of events like this one.
    But I, at least, am going to reserve comment for a while. This isn't to say that no one is to blame. Often people are to blame. But we ought to at least know all the facts before pointing fingers. We ought to stop for just a day or two to mourn the loss of these innocent lives.
    I've read some Facebook comments that mention the Boston bombing in opposing gun control. I'm opposed to most federal efforts to seize or track guns, but gun control efforts and the Boston bombing are completely unrelated. It's not productive to suggest otherwise.

British gave highest respect at Reagan funeral but Obama sends his ill-regards

    Two of the greatest leaders of the 20th Century were Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan. There's just no question about it, whether you agreed with their politics or not.
    When former-president Reagan died, British Prime Minister Tony Blair attended the funeral, as did former prime minister Thatcher, Prince Charles, along with a bevy of current and former world elected officials.
    It should be noted that Tony Blair is a socialist. But even though his politics are sharply different in many ways from those of Reagan, he attended the former president's funeral as a sign of respect for the close ties between our countries, made stronger under the Reagan administration.
    Sad to say our country lacks such leadership. President Obama has snubbed the British by sending only a few has-been government officials to represent the United States.  (Joining Argentina!). The House of Representatives is sending a delegation, but Obama's snub is really a disgrace and a black mark against our nation. This isn't the first time he's shown his disdain for the British. After his election he ordered that a bust of Winston Churchill given to the United States by the British be removed from the White House and returned. He couldn't have the White House sullied with such heroes, I suppose; had to make room for the Che Guevara memorials.
    People wonder why people who hate, despise, and detest Obama hate, despise, and detest the man so much. Perhaps the reason is because he is so very hateable, despicable, and detestable.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Circa 1947 Holly High Tiger football team

    I'm dating this as somewhere around the 1947 Holly High Tiger football team. The second player from the left on the back row appears to be John Kennedy, and from his appearance he looks to be a sophomore. He was born in 1931, so add 16 to that and you get 1947. Of course, he was young looking, so this could be 1948 or 1949.
    The black man on the left is Nat Brooks, the long time trainer for the team. The coach is identified on the back of the photo as Coach Tutor. The names "Vic," Jack Wittjin, Freeman Garner, and Bobby Carter are written on the back of the photo, but their numbers are not identified.
    I will update this if I am given more names.

Circa 1939 Holly High Tiger football team

     Pictured above are members of the 1939 or 1940 Holly High Tiger football team. Presumably the boys in the white uniforms are ninth-graders. This photo was from my Dad's office.
    On the front row, sixth from left is Shep Smith. Eighth from left is my father, Sidney Hurdle. On the second row, eighth from left is Blanton Jones.
   As always, click on the photo for a bigger copy. I will update this if I am provided with any more names.

News you can use: Paris metro adds new stops

    The Paris Metro has expanded and your old map isn't any good any more.
    Lines 4, 8, 12, and 13 have added new terminating metro stops at one or both ends. Since the direction you are going on the metro is determined by the final stop, it's important to know the name of the final stop. For example, to go south on the popular 4 line, you will now go towards Marie de Montrouge instead of Porte d'Orleans.
    Chances are almost certain the guidebook metro map you have is out of date, since the new map was only published in February 2013. Here's one you can print and take with you. As always, click on the map to bring up a larger copy.

Friday, April 5, 2013

If lifeguard diversity effort, potential applicants told swimming skills not important

    If you need yet another example of why affirmative action, quotas, and reverse discrimination (all the same in action) are wrong, turn your eyes to the city of Phoenix.
    National Public Radio reports that the city was concerned that most of its lifeguards at the city pools were white. So in its efforts to recruit lifeguards, a city officials stresses to potential employees that strong swimming skills are not required for the job. "We will work with you in your swimming abilities," the city's Melissa Boyle said.
    One of the reasons for this outreach is that at many pools most of the swimmers are black or Hispanic. The city is concerned that the children might not relate to a white lifeguard.
    "The kids in the pool are all either Hispanic or black or whatever, and every lifeguard is white," she says, "and we don't like that. The kids don't relate; there's language issues." I wonder what society would tell a bunch of white kids who refused to cooperate with a black lifeguard simply because he was black.
    I can't imagine that there are many black parents who would prefer that their children be watched over by an incompetent black lifeguard instead of a competent white one. Is it so important to have a black-skinned person sitting in the lifeguard chair that we are willing to let children drown?
    Here's a passage from the NPR story:

    "Honestly, I have a little bit a fear of the water, and I wanted to overcome that fear," says high school junior Jesus Jimenez. He didn't grow up going to pools with his family but likes the idea of lifeguarding.
    "It is nice to have the satisfaction of knowing that if somebody is in trouble you can save them at any time," he says.
    If he is selected to be a lifeguard, other pool staff will work with him on his swimming skills all summer.
   Just think, this program purports to take teen-agers who are afraid of the water and turn them into strong-swimming lifeguards in the space of two or three months. That's what Hope and Change and Baloney is all about.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Snackbar offers a beer and a half-dozen oysters for ten bucks

    I rarely eat oysters these days. They're just too expensive.
    Back when I turned 18 and could belly up to the New Orleans oyster bar for a beer and a dozen, my recollection is that a dozen oysters could be had for $3.50 or $4. Today the Acme Oyster House in New Orleans and most similar places sell a half-dozen for around $8.50 and a dozen for $13-14. In restaurants they often for $3 each, or an astronomical $36 per dozen.
    Today oysters have names. The waiter will inform the patrons that they have the sumpin-sumpin oyster, the this-n-that oyster, and the King Dan oyster. I belong in the "motor oil's motor oil" camp. Just sell me an oyster.
    I just found out about a great little Happy Hour deal that Oxford's Snackbar is offering: Half-a-dozen Gulf oysters plus a beer (or drink or wine) for ten bucks, every day from 4-6 p.m. Not sure if the beer is limited to one of Snackbar's $3.50 domestics or includes the $5 imports as well. I just don't see drinking mixed drinks or wine with oysters, but to each his own.
    So if you put a pencil to it, Snackbar's Happy Hour deal beats out the New Orleans prices by a couple of bucks. And it does so with the added cost of transporting the oysters 350 miles. Not too shabby in my book.

Monday, April 1, 2013

No great moral here, just more tales from life at the Poor Farm

        Note: This is the third in a series of blog posts highlighting stories about my father, or stories my father liked to share.
    I'm going to share a couple of additional stories about my Dad's time at the Poor Farm. There's no real moral to these stories, and in fact the first one I didn't hear about until a few years ago.
    A few years ago a pictorial history book was published featuring photos from the history of Holly Springs and Marshall County, Marshall County: From The Collection of Chesley Thorne Smith. The company that published this book published similar books all over the country. In Holly Springs we were fortunate that they were able to get the late Mrs. Smith to share her photo collection and rememberances of life in the county during the 1900s.
    Mrs. Smith's husband, "Gus," was my dad's law partner during the 1950s before he became a circuit judge and later a state supreme court justice (I was working for my Dad in 1977 and stuffed many an envelope on Judge Smith's behalf). Dad was glad to see the photos in Mrs. Smith's book, and was especially glad to see that she had a photo of "Parson Black," who eventually became a resident of the County Home.
Parson Black was a resident of the
County Poor Farm
    Dad said Mrs. Smith had some incorrect information in the book, namely that Parson Black had left behind a cigar box with $13,000 in it when he died. He said Mr. Black was mentally ill and under the delusion that he had possessed a great fortune that had been stolen from him; however there was no fortune. On several occasions he would leave the county home in search of his missing fortune.
    Sadly, Parson Black went missing one winter day and various people began searching for him. Dad said the search was made easier because he was wearing his shoes backwards, the left shoe on the right foot and vice versa. After two days they found him beside a pond, dead from exposure; I think Dad said he was on the Bryant Place, west of the Poor Farm.

    Another story my Dad shared a few times was of a resident dying and having to be buried in the Potter's Field. It was a bitter cold day and he and two or three brothers took on themselves the task of performing the burial. Dad said he was 10 or 11 at the time.
    He said Pop Hurdle arrived just as they were finishing and they explained what they were doing. Pop asked, "Did you bury him six feet deep?" They all "yessired" in unison.
    Pop walked with a cane, and he rammed his cane down in the loose dirt and at about 3.5 to four feet there was a "thunk."
    "Dig 'em up boys," was all my grandfather said.


    As I said, there is no moral to these stories. I share them only because it shows that at a very young age my father was having to deal with the business of death and dying. How many 10-, 12-, or 14-year-old boys are out looking for missing people today when there is a chance that they might find a dead body?
    And how many teen-age boys are essentially taking it upon themselves to prepare people for burial, dig the grave, put the casket in the grave and then fill it in. Only to have to do it all over again when "Daddy" finds out they didn't bury the body a full six-feet deep?
    It's a life that most of us simply cannot know or imagine.


    Now for a fun story. Some of the brothers -- don't know if Dad was included or not -- were sent out to chop cotton, along with a field hand named Ned.
    After they finished my grandfather came to "inspect" the work. He was a kind but temperamental man, and his children tried mightily not to displease him.
    He soon found a clump of unchopped weeds. "Ned did that row," one of the boys said.
    Another patch of weeds was found. "Ned did that row," another said.
    Then my grandfather came upon a cotton plant chopped cleanly in half, which he clearly viewed as a disaster of the highest order. "Ned did that row," they all said in unison.
    At which point my grandfather shouted, "Well no wonder Ned can't do a decent job. Y'all are making him do all the work!"