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09/17/21 01:52 PM #15264    


Jack Mallory

‚ÄčWildland just went onto my iPad the other day, Jay. Next in line behind Alpha: Eddie Gallagher and the War for the Soul of the Navy Seals. Were you tipped to Wildland by the author (Osnos) interview on NPR? That's how I heard about it. Be interested in comparing notes as we read. 

A transcript of the interview for anyone interested, and a podcast version, here: 

09/17/21 04:25 PM #15265    


Jay Shackford

I caught his interview on either CNN or MSNBC -- not NPR.  Just finished the sample pages.  Plan to buy the online version later today.  By the way, Jack, who is HCR mentioned in your previous post.   

09/17/21 08:22 PM #15266    


Jack Mallory

"Righteous," General Milley called the drone strike which killed 10 innocent Afghan civilians, 7 of whom were children. No ISIS fighters were killed or wounded in the attack. As ghastly as the mistake was, it must be seen in the context of tens of thousands of dead, wounded, and traumatized women, men, children, and babies in US attacks in Afghanistan, Iraq, and elsewhere during the war on terror over the last 20 years.(https://watson.brown.edu/costsofwar/costs/human/civilians/afghan)


The story was released by the Pentagon late Friday afternoon, the timing usually expected to generate the least possible media coverage in Washington. But not even the most hopeful Pentagon PR hack could have really thought this story would slip by.

To refer to the juxtaposition of the Pentagon and Christ as surreal seems a mild adjective to characterize the linkage of the two.


Heather Cox Richardson, Jay. From a post a week or two ago. https://heathercoxrichardson.substack.com/

09/18/21 06:04 PM #15267    


Helen Lambie (Goldstein)

In case you missed AOC's statement dress at the Met Gala this week, The New Yorker has a question for you....

09/18/21 07:27 PM #15268    


Glen Hirose

       Baveuse Regular

Life Savers Regular
Life Savers Regular




09/19/21 05:58 AM #15269    


Jack Mallory

If anyone sees any info on how to support this brave Texas doctor with donations for legal fees or body armor, please post.



Heather Cox Richardson—an historian, a lefty columnist (not a communist, John, a columnist), AND A KAYAKER! My kinda gal

Got to get going. First time paddle of Lake Chororua up in the White Mountains, hoping for more fall colors. Pix will follow. 


09/19/21 12:44 PM #15270    


Jay Shackford


Jack, thanks for the Washington Post opinion column from the Texas physician on abortion.  It tells a powerful, first person story on our return to pre-1973 days when abortion was outlawed.  Helen, thanks for the New Yorker cartoon -- although I agree with Glenn that AOC's dress would look good as a t-shirt as well.  


09/20/21 05:33 PM #15271    


Jack Mallory

Yesterday was like CSI New Hampshire on Lake Chocorua. Watched an eagle fishing, scoring, taking what we assumed was a fish off for lunch. But not a fish! Again, a trigger warning here.

Gorgeous day, Mt. Chocorua to the north. I've climbed it multiple times, especially as a teenager (too steep for an old fart!).


Eagle seen at a distance, looking for lunch.


Eagle lands briefly (didn't know eagles could do that, did you?)


Grabs a meal, you can just barely see it in the eagle's talons. These pix were all shot from 100 meters or so away--we hadn't even gotten the 'yaks off the car. But we put in, tracked the eagle down across the lake.


After a first touch down to do some initial lunch prep, the eagle flies into a tall tree where we can paddle up much closer to get pix.



We then paddle back to the eagle's original landing spot.

Not a fish! Loon Chick-A-Filet! I knew eagles preyed on smaller birds, but I've never seen it. If you look back at the photos of the eagle in the tree, you can see what are clearly feathers in the meal.

Well, eagles gotta eat too!


09/20/21 08:47 PM #15272    


Jack Mallory

Is it true that the Texas state legislature is to be replaced by mullahs, and that the state Supreme Court will be renamed the Ministry for the Propagation of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice?


Today on Grafton Pond was less Darwinian. Beautiful mist and happier loons, with the little one staying close to the parent. Never seen an eagle here, but ospreys are common and just as hungry  




09/21/21 11:14 AM #15273    


Jack Mallory

As an old man who was a young officer in Vietnam and has watched our wars since carefully, this is one of the best books I’ve read about real military values in the real world of training, combat and national politics. A must read to understand the complex moral conflicts embedded in combat, and how political interference endangers the traditions and institutions that should insure that our military fulfills its missions in an ethical and honorable way.

This is an obligatory read for citizens who believe that wars are the responsibility of politicians or soldiers. Alpha makes it clear that what transpires in OUR wars is OUR responsibility--as tax payers and voters, those who fund the wars and elect the politicians who, constitutionally, shape our military. 

Many of those described in this book, military and political, behaved bravely and honorably. Many did not. They all worked for us, and their behavior is to our credit and our shame.

09/22/21 09:02 AM #15274    


Nora Skinker (Morton)


Awakened to read this latest charm (see below) from my "liberalesque" Yahoo newsfeed. Ah, yes, another brilliant decision from ye olde Biden regime will do wonders for race relations, I'm sure. No mention, of course, that Haiti has a 1% COVID vaccination rate. And one wonders WHY "official sources" are unable to speak under strict anonymity? Why are they unwilling to share numbers, locations or Covid info about our new Haitian neighbors? Hmm. Maybe it's for the same reason that Biden never mentioned Afghanistan nor his horrific border CRISIS in his platitudinal (is that a word?) UN speech. Just a wild guess - bad optics. But hey, perhaps my forum friends could shed light on the reasons. They know so much more than I. Particularly about Trump's naughtiness, women's bodies, herons & climate change. 
Meanwhile, here's the "who-what-when-where & why" of Yahoo's "journalistic" piece (along with some morning smiles). Better stay clear of very dark skinned folks til we get em vaxxed! And have a good one, ya'll. 



09/22/21 09:12 AM #15275    


Nora Skinker (Morton)

Oh, forgot to mention: remember your "righteous" buddy, Vindman from our old 'impeach Trump' days? Apparently, he feels strongly enough to say publicly that "righteous" Milley must go. Crazy, eh? Does that make Vindman MORE righteous than Milley? Inquiring minds need to know...

09/22/21 10:56 AM #15276    


Robert Hall

Vindman's opinion piece was thought provoking. After you've read it Nori let us know what points resonated with you.

09/22/21 03:31 PM #15277    


Jack Mallory

I thought Col. Vindman's opinion piece (https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/alexander-vindman-general-milley-resign/2021/09/17/79fe52d8-17b1-11ec-a5e5-ceecb895922f_story.html) was an informed perspective on Milley's actions, Robert. As Vindman suggests, the upcoming Congressional testimony may make Milley's resignation, or termination, a necessity. Resignation ahead of the fact might be an honorable way out, and I'm not convinced he had dishonorable intent in his actions. The quote from Vindman's friend is apropos: You can break norms for a greater good, but that often comes with a price. Paying it is the only way to ensure the norms survive for the next time.”

I can't tell from Nora's post what her opinion is and why, just that she thinks there's some "righteousness" competition between Vindman and Milley. I don't understand that at all.

I'm sure, given her interest in these issues, that she's read both Vindman's WaPo opinion in its entirety, and his book. The Alpha book might also be informative about the complexity of military involvement in political policy making, and political influence on military decision making: something an inquiring mind might want to learn about.

In the information era, with so much knowledge so readily available, being at a cognitive disadvantage concerning "Trump's naughtiness, women's bodies, herons & climate change" is a matter of choice. Allaboutbirds.com is a good source on herons--the other topics may take more research.

Nora, would you share with us more specifically what you think about Vindman's opinions and his suggestion that Milley should have resigned, or should resign, his position as chair of the JCS? Do you think he should have modeled his behavior on Mattis's protest of Trump's Syria withdrawal, as Vindman suggests? Why or why not?

09/22/21 03:47 PM #15278    


Joanie Bender (Grosfeld)

I think Milley was genuinely afraid since Trump was unhinged of what he might do so I'm glad he wanted the people involved to inform him before something tragic might happen.

I am upset about the Haitians so not sure why they are being turned away. I will look into it further. Also it was so tragic that the aid worker and family including 7 children were killed by mistake. That should never happen. Having said that I still feel that Biden is the right President to take over after the disastrous corrupt and anti democratic Presidency of Trump. I am proud of how bold he has been on the infrastructure and on the pandemic,etc. Nori is quick to mention the Haitians which should be mentioned and cared about, but why not a peep when Trump kept so many out and separated children from their parents. Love joanie

09/22/21 08:26 PM #15279    


Jack Mallory

Jay--I just finished the prologue to Wildland. What a striking explication of the state of the country today, and description of his purpose in writing! I'm an inveterate academic nerd; I still highlight text as I read and most of the chapter is now red. 

The end of that prologue, after Osnos has described the divisions, fears, and inequalities characterizing our nation today, reads:

"On the road, I often carried John Gunther’s book Inside U.S.A. I liked to remind myself of what he observed in America at the end of World War II. On the final page, he recorded his faith in America’s talent for “the rational approach, reason, the meeting of minds in honorable agreement after open argument.”

"At its core, my project was an attempt to understand how we had lost that talent and how we might recover it. I spent a decade in parts of the world where people tend to be skeptical about American promises and values, and I often found myself making a case for the United States, urging citizens of Egypt, Iraq, or China to believe that, for all of America’s failings, it aspires to some basic moral commitments, including the rule of law, the force of truth, and the right to pursue a better life. When I returned to the United States, I began to wonder if I had been lying all those years to people around the world—and to myself.

"The failure of that mythology became spectacularly vivid in Washington. But the deeper origins and effects lay far away, in real lives of intricate drama, in which the events of the capital intrude only occasionally, like flames licking up on the horizon.

I'm eager to see if the book succeeds in explaining how we got where we are in the third decade of the 21st Century.


Speaking of which, 

"Better stay clear of very dark skinned folks til we get em vaxxed!" Post #15274

I knew there was a reason to take this picture.



Joanie--unfortunately, Biden's treatment of the Haitian refugees at the Texas border is not dissimilar to Trump's. Here's a pretty good description: 


09/23/21 06:33 AM #15280    


Jack Mallory

50 years ago. One of the all-time great albums. 


“Your Flag Decal Won’t Get You Into Heaven Anymore.” 50 years later, still right on.  https://youtu.be/sRCLHBhZPQ4

". . . Now Jesus don't like killing, no matter what the reason for . . ."

And "Sam Stone" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sl9ZkYViEIs

09/23/21 11:45 AM #15281    


Joanie Bender (Grosfeld)

Jack, thanks for the article. I am very unhappy with the Biden policy towards the Haitian immigrants. I hope pressure will cause a reversal. It is very Trumpian. Love, Joanie

09/23/21 04:51 PM #15282    


Jack Mallory

And this, Joanie. 

"'I will not be associated with the United States’ inhumane, counterproductive decision to deport thousands of Haitian refugees and illegal immigrants to Haiti, a country where American officials are confined to secure compounds because of the danger posed by armed gangs in control of daily life,' Mr. Foote wrote in his stinging resignation letter to Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken, dated Wednesday."


09/23/21 05:10 PM #15283    


Joanie Bender (Grosfeld)

Thanks Jack. I heard about the resignation. Love joanie

09/24/21 03:06 PM #15284    


Jack Mallory

Nora, you must have missed Robert's and my interest in your opinion on Vindman's article--and book, if you've read it. I asked, "Nora, would you share with us more specifically what you think about Vindman's opinions and his suggestion that Milley should have resigned, or should resign, his position as chair of the JCS? Do you think he should have modeled his behavior on Mattis's protest of Trump's Syria withdrawal, as Vindman suggests? Why or why not?"

I'd be interested in hearing your response. This is a chance for you to break through the silo you seem to fear constrains our exposure to other than left wing thoughts.

You can skip the racist remarks about "very dark skinned folks," though. Your friends in back may think they're a chuckle. I don't.


Continuing our forensic photography work on the Lake Chocorua case, folks from the Loon Preservation society, looking at the pix, are thinking it may not be a juvenile loon but perhaps a duck. We never saw the whole victim, so the evidence is not conclusive. I just sent them photos of other feathers Deb recovered from the crime scene, below.

The blue, which is sort of iridescent and only shows with certain light angles, might be mallard? The long, white feather is unlike any of the others in the photos. Deb is hoping it's a Bald Eagle tail feather! 

More as the case develops.


This guy, outside the house the other day, is not suspected of anything. 




09/25/21 11:46 AM #15285    


Glen Hirose


Life Savers Regular

There's a reason he/she/it is so brightly decked-out.


I once picked up a bright vermilion caterpillar, and got a pretty significant rash, The residual affects could explain my current physical and mental state.


09/25/21 06:28 PM #15286    


Jack Mallory


Glen, you've been telling that caterpillar story for years. Everybody knows how you got that "rash"!


Another Long Pond morning. Getting close to prime leaf peeping, especially in the foothills of the White Mountains  





09/26/21 11:00 AM #15287    


Glen Hirose


The Sunapee Fire Department has issued a health advisory, warning local residents to watch out for the Hickory Tussock moth caterpillar, a woolly white caterpillar with black markings and long white hairs.


My Scars



09/26/21 03:07 PM #15288    


Jack Mallory

Glen, I used to put those guys on a toothpick with an olive, for my martinis. 


Loon flight school today on Willard Pond. 


Coming at me so fast I couldn't keep it in the frame!


At this point I dropped the camera into my lap and put my hands up to keep it from flying into my face!


It didn't, but was clearly very pleased with itself even though it never did get off the water  


Got home to find the Contoocook behind the house full of mergansers, a kind of punk species of duck.


They CAN fly, so fast that the shutter speed that works for eagles, herons, and loons won't freeze a merganser in take-off.



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