Friday, October 14, 2011

Some thoughts for an October weekend

My old body is once again protesting the weather.  Yesterday's rain brought whatever rains bring to every joint in my body.  It is continuing today and possibly into early Saturday morning, at least in our part of Maine.  I liked last weekend's weather much more.

I don't know of anything special on tap for the Clan this weekend.  Sunday might see a trip around the yard on the lawn mowing tractor.  That will depend entirely on how wet or even damp the grass is.  The grass catcher part of my machine simply doesn't like wet grass.  It clogs just about every circle around the yard and has to be pretty much dismantled to get cleaned.  All the stops add at least a half hour to the already too long chore.  There won't be too many more mowings this year, though.

Our daughter probably will bring her Golden Retriever to romp and chase around the yard with our Golden.  The two dogs are sisters and continue to look forward to being with each other.  They've been best of friends for eight years. 

We are so happy to see Gator Golden romping and wrestling.  She had her hind knee surgically repaired last spring and, at doctor's orders, we had kept her quiet for several weeks, then only allowed her limited playing for several more.  About three weeks ago, she threw all caution to the wind and raced around the yard with her sister.  Other than really tiring herself out, she showed no negative effects from the playing.  It had been her idea to run and we've just enjoyed the return of our playful pup to what I guess one would call normalcy.

She always used to 'sneak' up onto our bed in the middle of the night and snuggle between us.  It was an allowed behavior.  But when she slipped on ice last February, she couldn't get up.  A trip we older men seem to have to take in the early morning hours ended with GG a little restless.  Shortly after I returned to bed, I heard her sort of sneaking around and then for the first time since the accident she jumped onto the bed.  It was almost funny watching her literally holding her breath and looking at each of us as if she was waiting for the 'axe' to fall.  Of course, it didn't and a big sigh sent her into snuggling.

If you think the Post Office is slow in delivering packages and mail, you've never had something shipped via FedEx Smartpost.  Once you do,  you'll think the USPS is the fastest package deliverer around.  I ordered something online last week from Wisconsin.  Using the FedEx tracking system, I started following the package.  In fewer than two days via regular FedEx it arrived in Northborough, MA.  It's due here on Oct. 18th.  It was a "free" shipped item so I shouldn't complain.  But I think next time I'll pay the few bucks to regular delivery.  That's only about three days from Wisconsin.

I've been reading some information on Republican presidential hopeful Herman Cain's 9-9-9 tax plan.  He's right.  It sounds simple.  It would do away with some current tax code, like the income tax, but everyone, I mean everyone, will be paying a sales tax, 9%, on everything they buy in addition to 9% on income.  I'm still a little fuzzy on the third 9. 

On the first glance, it looks like everyone will be paying an effective 27% to the federal government in addition to Maine's sales and income taxes.  I emphasized the "everyone."  You see, there will be no low income exemptions so people who now pay no or very little income tax will be faced with an up to 27% tax right off the top.  My first looks indicate that the low income and middle class Americans will be slammed hard with the 9-9-9 plan and the wealthy in our country will get a huge break.

Let me emphasize once again that my early understanding may be somewhat flaky and I have a lot of work to do for a full understanding.  What I will do, however, is urge you to do some research of your own to form your own honest impression of the plan.  This is one time you shouldn't let your party's talking points do the swaying.  My first impression is Cain's 9-9-9 plan will do more harm than good, especially to the low income and middle income families.

I know some of you would tell me to provide links for information.  I won't because I don't want your impression to be skewed by places I look.  If you don't know how to search, one place to start might be Google.  Type 9-9-9 in the search box.

Meanwhile as we mentioned last time, the Senate stopped President Obama's job plan and is back at the drawing board look for a new tact.  Now the Republican's have formulated their own jobs bill which as is has about as much chance of passing as something I'd come up with.  Two provisions in their plan are doomed even before the ink dries.  They are the complete repeal of the ObamaCare and a Constitutional amendment requiring a balanced budget. 

Don't get me wrong.  I'd favor both, but realistically the Congress critters won't.  And I won't limit that to one party.

And I must mention the raking over the coals of the Boston Red Sox by the news media and bloggers all across the country.  There's been precious few positive articles about the Sox Management, especially over allowing Epstein and Francona to go away and the failure to take control of the clubhouse.  This could be an interesting winter.

I hope you have great weekend in spite of the weather.


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