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Solly Mack

Profile Information

Gender: Do not display
Current location: Back of Beyond
Member since: 2001
Number of posts: 84,516

About Me

Busy observing the group dynamics of dust bunnies.

Journal Archives

Shortly after 7 A.M.

I was outside with my doggies and saw a great mass of birds in the sky. The flock landed in a tree several houses down and I knew what they were. The Cedar Waxwings have been rather elusive this year, choosing to feed from berry shrubs other than my own. I grabbed my camera and in my flip-flops I walked through the cold, wet grass in hopes of getting close enough to snag a few photos.

I didn't want to get too close and cause them to fly away. Against the backdrop of a still rising sun I was able to get a few shots before they took off again.

Just a few shots from my bird count.

I know I do a lot of birds. Sorry!

The much hated House Sparrow.

The cute and adorable Red Breasted Nuthatch.

The very fast and tiny Carolina Chickadee

The neurotic Eurasian Collared Dove.

The curious Purple Finch (Female)

Great Backyard Bird Count: Feb. 15-18, 2013

Just a reminder.

The Great Backyard Bird Count is coming up this weekend.

Why count birds?
Scientists and bird enthusiasts can learn a lot by knowing where the birds are. Bird populations are dynamic; they are constantly in flux. No single scientist or team of scientists could hope to document and understand the complex distribution and movements of so many species in such a short time.

The longer these data are collected, the more meaningful they become in helping scientists investigate far-reaching questions, like these:

• How will the weather influence bird populations?

• Where are winter finches and other “irruptive” species that appear in large numbers during some years but not others?

• How will the timing of birds’ migrations compare with past years?

• How are bird diseases, such as West Nile virus, affecting birds in different regions?

• What kinds of differences in bird diversity are apparent in cities versus suburban, rural, and natural areas?

How to participate.

And just think of all the bird photos you can share! They also host a photo contest!

When will the "(Global) War on Terror"/"Overseas Contingency Operations" be over?

Will a "state of emergency" continue to exist that will require certain actions by the government?

As long as the AUMF is cited as the reason behind the authority of a certain action or actions, it can be said that a state of emergency exist. The AUMF has been cited as the authority behind warrantless wiretapping/electronic surveillance, detentions/indefinite detentions, "enhanced interrogation techniques" (torture), and drones/targeted killings.

There was a time when a state of emergency passed and all the powers that went with it ended.

Is that time over?

I think FDR should have been held accountable for that.

I've said the same before on DU.

Matters not to me who decided it was Constitutional, thereby legal. Read Martin Luther King's Letter from Birmingham Jail. Declaring something legal is one way to legitimize a host of horrors and abuses.

I think Bush (and all the rest) should be held accountable for war crimes. This isn't going to happen because America likes to pretend it is something it isn't. A country that cares about human rights. Oh, we give lip service to it, and we always promise to do better (As if before Bush we didn't know torture was wrong), and we most certainly chastise other countries over their human rights abuses - but let something bad happen to us and we're right back to committing abuses and declaring those abuses legal.

I don't support the "war on terror". Prior to Bush, acts of terror were handled as criminal acts. Many, many Americans, have allowed themselves to be swept up in the Bush/Cheney idea of a global battlefield, where enemies lurk in every corner, so we must bomb those corners into oblivion to feel safe. With each passing year the battlefield has grown, the enemies have multiplied - do we feel safe yet?

I've witnessed a change over the last 12 years and it has been an ugly change. More and more people are willing to accept almost anything as long as someone tells them it is legal (Thanks to the superb conditioning of the last 12 years). People have always been susceptible to the declarations of authority but I swear there was a time when more people fought against it: they questioned it - loudly. A small minority to be sure - but that minority has gotten even smaller. Sad.

I'm a registered Democrat and likely to remain so. But I was born a human. I can't just switch that on and off.

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