Wednesday, the day after….Morning reads.

Edward Gorey

Edward Gorey

Good morning everyone.

Horrible weather is making its way across the US, so first…before we get to any reads, make sure you keep an eye out for bad storms.

Intellicast – Current Radar in United States

Severe Weather Warnings Page

This image of a lighted tree in a pope mobile/sleigh is appropriate for the wet and cold days this holiday.

Let’s start this post with some thoughts on Newtown, CT., both of which are very emotional…for different reasons.

Mom of Sandy Hook Child Victim Shares Daughter’s ‘Message From Beyond the Grave’ in Incredibly Moving CNN Interview

Grace McDonnell was one of the 20 children killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School this month. As her parents are grieving the loss of their bright-eyed, seven-year-old daughter, they can take at least some solace in a sign of comfort that she left behind.

Grace was known for leaving messages on the family’s bathroom window — notes and symbols that would show up once fog clouded the room from shower steam. And the day after her death, seemingly on cue, one of these notes appeared to her mother.

Grace McDonnell Leaves Sign for Her Mother Lynn on Bathroom Window | Sandy Hook

Grace McDonnell, one of the victims of the Sandy Hook massacre (Photo Credit: CNN)

On the first day without her daughter, Lynn McDonnell said that the message on the window was a peace sign, Grace’s favorite symbol. Above it were the words, “Grace, Mom.” CNN was moved to call the family’s finding “a message from beyond the grave.”

“I looked and there was her peace sign in the window and I was like, ‘That’s a sign from my Grace,’” Lynn said. ”She was all about peace and gentleness and kindness.”

Heartbreaking. As many of us are thankful this holiday season is almost over, it makes me stop and think how lucky we are to even have a holiday filled with the usual stresses and family dinner get-together, whether they are enjoyable or not.

The other link I have for you is just more discussion on gun-control, in an op/ed from Michael Moore: 3 Reasons America Is Falling Apart — And How We Can Save Ourselves

After watching the deranged, delusional National Rifle Association press conference on Friday, it was clear that the Mayan prophecy had come true. Except the only world that was ending was the NRA’s. Their bullying power to set gun policy in this country is over. The nation is repulsed by the massacre in Connecticut, and the signs are everywhere: a basketball coach at a post-game press conferencethe Republican Joe Scarborougha pawn shop owner in Floridaa gun buy-back program in New Jerseya singing contest show on TV, and  the conservative gun-owning judge who sentenced Jared Loughner.

So here’s my little bit of holiday cheer for you:

These gun massacres aren’t going to end any time soon.

That is just the first few lines of the op/ed, please take a look. I don’t usually post links to the rants of Michael Moore…but he sure as hell got the Columbine story the attention it deserved…along with other gun related shootings and killings in his film, Bowling for Columbine. Anyway, take a few minutes to read his opinion.

This next story is fascinating from an environmental stand-point.  After you read it, just think of the disaster in the making:  Proposed Coles Hill uranium mine: Buried treasure or hidden threat?

Beneath an estate that’s been farmed by the Coles family since just after the Revolutionary War lies the nation’s largest untapped uranium deposit, a potential $10 billion bonanza amid rolling hills, oak trees, pastures and a historic plantation home.

The radioactive treasure in the Blue Ridge foothills is pitting neighbor against neighbor and North Carolinians against Virginians. North Carolina is only about 20 miles from the proposed uranium mine and residents, public officials and lawmakers there worry that a catastrophic release of radioactive waste could poison Kerr Lake, the drinking water source for more than 118,000 North Carolinians, as well as contaminate the fishing- and recreation-rich Roanoke River as far east as Pamlico Sound.

With the recent ProPublica report on the contamination of water aquifers by the US government, this “mother-lode” of radioactive uranium seems like a mining operation that is just asking for trouble.

From the Guardian, this question is one we all should be asking…from Carl Bernstein:     Why the US media ignored Murdoch’s brazen bid to hijack the presidency

CEO Rupert Murdoch

The Ailes/Petraeus tape made clear to many that Murdoch’s goals in America have always been nefarious. Photograph: Reuters

So now we have it: what appears to be hard, irrefutable evidence of Rupert Murdoch‘s ultimate and most audacious attempt – thwarted, thankfully, by circumstance – to hijack America’s democratic institutions on a scale equal to his success in kidnapping and corrupting the essential democratic institutions of Great Britain through money, influence and wholesale abuse of the privileges of a free press.

In the American instance, Murdoch’s goal seems to have been nothing less than using his media empire – notably Fox News – to stealthily recruit, bankroll and support the presidential candidacy of General David Petraeus in the 2012 election.

And like the rest of the articles I have for you this morning, it is just a few first lines, read the rest at the link.

That is all I have for you this morning, how was your holiday and what have you been ready lately?

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17 Comments on “Wednesday, the day after….Morning reads.”

  1. Eric Pleim says:

    I don’t usually go for the tear jerking stories surrounding tragedies, but the one about the little girl and the bathroom mirror got me. This is the massacre that really should kick off a serious discussion about arms. Very big, kids soooo young, and middle class and white. You couldn’t ask for more than that. It won’t though. The toothpaste is out of the tube anyway, with 300 million guns in the US. I’m despairing of ever handling this.

  2. I have a few more links on Newtown. I realize it is no longer receiving top story news status…and I wish more information would be released regarding Lanza. But I really don’t want to move on and not keep the issue of gun control/mental health/bullet control in the forefront.

    Anyway:
    The man who killed those firefighters in Webster NY used the same gun and clip as Adam Lanza did in Newtown. Webster Shooter Used Same Semiautomatic As Newtown Shooter – Rochester, News, Weather, Sports, and Events – 13WHAM.com

    There are some more tributes planned:

    PHOTO: Virginia Tech helmets to honor Newtown, Blacksburg victims – CBSSports.com

    Newtown finds a way to dispose of victim mementos – SFGate

    And then there is this, which I think is more constructive than anything I have seen…at least it addresses on an issue we forget when something like this happens. The surviving kids who have to go back to school after someone destroys what should be a safe place. Reassurance for Newtown kids

    Imagining the horror for Sandy Hook Elementary students when they walk into their new school for the first time, a Connecticut mother is relying on Chester of the children’s classic The Kissing Hand and the busy fingers of her fellow knitters to ease their way.

    Kim Piscatelli of East Hampton, Conn., hit on the idea of sending a copy of the book for each of the children and a pair of handmade mittens adorned with a heart in one palm, signifying the reassuring kiss left there by the mother of scared, sad Chester.

    [...]

    In The Kissing Hand, the tearful boy is heading off to school for the first time, but he begs his mother to let him stay home. She spreads his tiny fingers and kisses him square on the palm and tells him “whenever you feel lonely and need a little loving from home, just press your hand to your cheek and think, ‘Mommy loves you.’ ”

    [...]

    One of Piscatelli’s first steps in getting her mitten project off the ground was to contact Penn, who lives in Durham, N.C. She recalled reading the story to her own three kids when they were younger.

    Penn, who lost a brother to drowning when she was 13, signed off on the combined book-mitten project as soon as Piscatelli contacted her.

    “When I saw the news, my heart was just torn in half. I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t breathe. Enough is enough is enough,” the writer said.

    Penn’s 2009 sequel, called “Chester the Raccoon and the Acorn Full of Memories,” has Chester the boy raccoon working through the death of a friend, Skiddil Squirrel, who has an accident. Chester’s teacher tells his class Skiddil won’t return to school, so Chester and his mother venture to a butterfly pond where the squirrel loved to play to discover that some acorns Skiddil left there have sprouted into young trees.

    “I’ve been involved with so many parents who have lost children,” Penn said. “They just seem to reach out to me and say we love your book and your book has been a comfort.”

    The writer hopes the children of Sandy Hook will “get a sense of some kind of security” from the mitten project. “They’ll have a way of keeping in tangible touch with someone at home, someone they feel very secure with.”

    I think it is a wonderful gesture…

  3. I’ve got another tender story for you, this one will touch lots of animal lovers hearts and maybe even the ones who are not fond of four legged friends. (Ma I am talking to you…LOL)

    Cagle Post – Political Cartoons & Commentary – » Abner, The Volunteer Dog

    I got word last week that Abner had died — Abner the dog.

    Abner had been a “volunteer” at the Little Sisters of the Poor retirement home in Pittsburgh, one of the many private facilities that provide high-quality care and compassion to the elderly poor within 31 countries.

    More backstory here:

    CagleCartoons.com – Tom Purcell (A Dog Named Abner)

    Enjoy that one, and have a safe and happy day.

    • NW Luna says:

      Ohhh. Sad, but what love he must have shared with so many. Blessings on therapy animals and the persons working with them. JJ, thx for posting this.

  4. Mary Luke says:

    I haven’t read the entire post from Moore yet, but I’m definitely convinced this country has fallen apart. MB said it four years ago. We are living in a country in which the rich want to create a proletariat. It gets worse by the day. I am serious when I say, whatever God, Goddess, or power you believe in, help us all because we need help. Oh, and WordPress messed up my account when I changed email addresses, and i cannot seem to fix it, which is why you haven’t heard from me much lately. This is the poster formerly known as BackBayStyle, under my real ordinary name, posting through FB. Since I’m no longer in BackBay, and probably not very stylish either anymore, I think I’ll let that moniker go.

    • dakinikat says:

      Whatever the moniker!!! We’re glad to have you!!!

      • Mary Luke says:

        Thanks Kat. I am so technologically inept I’m going to have to take this computer somewherre to straighten out my various online usernames, etc. Lesson learned; Notify all websites what your new email will be before disconnecting the old one. No matter what they claim, they won’t be able to find your account and most of them have no telephone tech support, just an absurd questionnaire that asks ‘did we solve your problem’ then sends you back to the homepage!

    • NW Luna says:

      Good to see you, ML!

      I had one email account which, after the org said they’d offer service in perpetuity, (you guessed it!) shut it down after ~5 yrs. The only thing I can do is have stuff forwarded, better than some others got stuck with. But try to get off lists, or deal with groups who can’t understand why I still get (forwarded) email from an address but can’t email them back from that address. Crazy.

  5. NW Luna says:

    I usually associate this song with Elvis Costello & the Chieftains, but here’s a version with more women in the band! Lyrics below for those not yet familiar with this song. In the Christian church, St. Stephen’s Day is 26 December in the Western tradition and 27 December in the Eastern.

    St. Stephen’s Day Murders

    I knew of two sisters whose name it was Christmas
    And one was named Dawn of course, the other one was named Eve
    I wonder if they grew up hating the season
    Of the good will that lasts till the Feast of St. Stephen

    For that is the time to eat, drink and be merry
    ‘Til the beer is all spilled and the whiskey is flowed
    And the whole family tree you neglected to bury
    Are feeding their faces until they explode

    There’ll be laughter and tears over Tia Marias
    Mixed up with that drink made from girders
    And it’s all we’ve got left as they draw their last breath
    And it’s nice for the kids as you finally get rid of them
    In the St. Stephen’s Day Murders

    Uncle is garglin’ a heart-breaking air
    While the babe in his arms pulls out all that remains of his hair
    And we’re not drunk enough yet to dare criticize
    The great big kipper tie he’s about to baptize

    His gin-flavoured whispers and kisses of sherry
    His best crimble shirt slung out over the shop
    While the lights from the Christmas tree blow up the telly
    His face closes in like an old cold pork chop

    And the carcass of the beast left over from the feast
    May still be found haunting the kitchen
    And there’s life in it yet we may live to regret
    When the ones that we poisoned stop twitchin’

    There’ll be laughter and tears over Tia Marias
    Mixed up with that drink made from girders
    And it’s all we’ve got left as they draw their last breath
    And it’s nice for the kids as you finally get rid of them
    In the St. Stephen’s Day Murders