Thursday, April 21, 2011

Fraser Opposes Amendment #106

Prairie Warbler/Dendroica discolorImage via Wikipedia
Dear Editor,

Though the practice of forest clear-cutting may be less aesthetically desirable for the public, it creates preferred habitat for many species. Regenerating and young forest habitats created through forest management, including clear-cutting, provide food, shelter and breeding habitat and contain a greater diversity of wildlife species than any other forest age class. 

Over 90% of Massachusetts forest is now mature forest cover which shelters certain wildlife, but most are also wholly or partially dependent on early successional (young) forest habitat. If the thick canopy is not opened soon by environmentally-sound harvesting (logging), we may soon witness  further decline and eventual extinction of a number of species.  Early successional habitat is absolutely essential for birds such as grouse and woodcock. It is also essential for other species that although not officially listed as rare, are experiencing sharp population declines due, in part, to habitat loss- birds such as prairie warbler, brown thrasher and whip-poor-wills to name a few. 

It is for this reason I believe Amendment #106 to the Massachusetts House budget must be defeated.  It would ban clear-cutting in state forests including Department of Fisheries and Wildlife lands where vitally needed habitat is established and protected.  Today, less than 5% of the Massachusetts forest is early successional. Though small forest openings allow certain songbirds to perch and sing, they cannot mate and need additional acreage if they are to survive and thrive. Clear-cut areas are critically needed, despite public opposition.  Please contact your legislators to defeat budget amendment #106.

Genevieve Fraser
211 Dana Road
Orange, MA 01364
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Saturday, April 16, 2011

In Defense of Offense

Cavett Interviews CavettImage by Stewf via Flickr
April 15, 2011, 8:30 pm

In Defense of Offense

 Brief dialogue:
Network executive: We’re afraid some viewers might be offended.
DC: So?
Thus began, with my shocking impertinence, my first lesson in network nervousness.
It couldn’t have come at a more discouraging time. I had just finished taping my very first show on ABC.
I was proud of the lineup of guests I had managed to snare for the scary maiden voyage on the stormy seas of hosting a 90-minute talk show. The guests booked were three distinct personalities. What is known in the talk show game as “a good mix.” Muhammad Ali, Angela Lansbury and Gore Vidal.
The talk was brisk and lively and there was much gratifying laughter from the studio audience. I came offstage relieved not to be dripping flop sweat and delighted to have the first one down and at having it go so well.
I expected a cheery slap on the back from the network man, and more or less got it. Only it was applied elsewhere.

“Nobody gives a goddamn what Muhammad Ali and Gore Vidal think about the Vietnam war.”
Shock preceded anger.
Hadn’t I done what I was supposed to do? Booked remarkable guests, kept the conversational ball in the air and entertained the viewers?
Apparently not.
I asked what it was about the show I had just done that the network could be worried about.
“We just don’t want to offend anyone,” he said to my wondering ears. So that was it. Someone somewhere might be offended.
I’ve never quite understood why this word — “offended” — is so horrifying. What doesn’t offend somebody? And who wants to see, read or write anything that is simon-pure in its inability to offend those dreaded “someones”?
“What could be more offensive than an offense-free show?” I sincerely inquired of the network suit.
That was considered offensive.
My favorite first dose of offended reaction is one I may have reported here before. It came from an apparently ruffled resident of Waco, Texas. My secretary was reluctant to show it to me. Hand-printed in pencil and all in caps, it read: “DEAR DICK CAVETT YOU LITTLE SAWED OFF FAGGOT COMMUNIST SHRIMP.”
A lot of thought went into that.
Untypically, there was a return address and I shot right back, “I am not sawed-off.”
Anyone working in the media can tell you that there seems to be an always-ready-to-explode segment of the populace for whom offense is a fate worse than anything imaginable. You’d think offense is one of the most calamitous things that could happen to a human being; right up there with the loss of a limb, or just missing a parking space.
What is our obligation to the offendees? To help them limit their suffering by avoiding all offense? With what advice?
You could stay in the house, watch no TV, read nothing of any kind including potentially upsetting snail mail or e-mail, and you just might manage to glide through an offense-free day. No surly neighbor, no near-misses by unpunished, demented, sidewalk-riding cyclists, no cab driver letting other cabs in ahead of yours while distractedly nattering on his phone in no known language. Stay cocooned and you will risk no insults from rude waiters, no pain from gruff clerks, no snarls from airline employees.
“What sort of thing offends you, Mr. Cavett?” an interviewer asked me recently. “In other words, what to you is politically incorrect.”
“Anything that is politically correct.”
Such as?
Well, the infantilism of the phrase “the n-word,” for example, and of those of less than fully formed cerebral development who have bowdlerized Mark Twain’s masterpiece because of the references to Huck’s beloved friend in the authentic vernacular of the time. I hate to spoil the fun of the benighted and alleged educators who have even pulled this great book from the school shelves, but Jim is the moral center of the story.
Presumably those same people would deny students the pleasure of Joseph Conrad’s “The … [what? ‘Person of Color’?] … of the ‘Narcissus’”? Why endow a word everyone knows with such majestic power that, like Yahweh of the Old Testament, it cannot be uttered?
A current example of offense ready to spring is the reaction of some to Julian Schnabel’s remarkable and stirring new movie, “Miral.” Anything set in the always-simmering Middle East is going to be a lightning rod. But the nay-saying here is upsetting.
Taken from Rula Jebreal’s excellent novel of the same name, much of the expressed heavy criticism of it is all wrong. The movie has had rained upon it the ire of the offense brigade. (Embarrassingly, some prominent Jewish organizations have not felt the need to see it in order to denounce it. Others, though, have praised it.)
Those who take “Miral” as an out-and-out political screed don’t seem to get it. It’s a dramatic rendering of the life of a girl caught up in a troubled world of violent passions. Not, as some fevered detractors have seen it, a venomous assault on Israel.
I have at least two sets of friends who’ve announced that they are definitely not going to see the movie.
I was taken aback. “Shouldn’t you have seen the movie in order to be able to say that?” I said, jesting partially, inspired perhaps by Mark Twain’s opinion that three specific literary scholars who extolled James Fenimore Cooper’s writing might have done well to have read some of it.
As to “Miral,” I suggest you see it.
How sad when art is viewed through a dreary political lens. In a world with a better grip on itself, the proper reaction to Schnabel’s and Jebreal’s touching movie would be, “What a hell of a good story!”
I hope that doesn’t hurt anyone’s feelings.
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Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Crooked Tongue Symptom of Stroke

Blood Clots/Stroke - They Now Have a Fourth Indicator, the Tongue

Remember the 1st Three Letters....S.T.R.

My nurse friend sent this and encouraged me to post it and spread the word.
I agree.

If everyone can remember something this simple, we could save some folks.

Please read:


During a BBQ, a friend stumbled and took a little fall - she assured everyone that she was fine (they offered to call paramedics) .she said she had just tripped over a brick because of her new shoes.

They got her cleaned up and got her a new plate of food. While she appeared a bit shaken up, Ingrid went about enjoying herself the rest of the evening

Ingrid's husband called later telling everyone that his wife had been taken to the hospital - (at 6:00 pm Ingrid passed away..) She had suffered a stroke at the BBQ. Had they known how to identify the signs of a stroke, perhaps Ingrid would be with us today. Some don't die. they end up in a helpless, hopeless condition instead.

It only takes a minute to read this...

A neurologist says that if he can get to a stroke victim within 3 hours he can totally reverse the effects of a stroke...totally. He said the trick was getting a stroke recognized, diagnosed, and then getting the patient medically cared for within 3 hours, which is tough.


Thank God for the sense to remember the '3' steps, STR . Read and Learn!

Sometimes symptoms of a stroke are difficult to identify. Unfortunately, the lack of awareness spells disaster. The stroke victim may suffer severe brain damage when people nearby fail to recognize the symptoms of a stroke.

Now doctors say a bystander can recognize a stroke by asking three simple questions:

S *
Ask the individual to SMILE.
T *
Ask the person to TALK and SPEAK A SIMPLE SENTENCE (Coherently)
(i.e. It is sunny out today.)

*Ask him or her to RAISE BOTH ARMS.

If he or she has trouble with ANY ONE of these tasks, call emergency number immediatelyand describe the symptoms to the dispatcher.

New Sign of a Stroke

-------- Stick out Your Tongue

NOTE: Another 'sign' of a stroke is this: Ask the person to 'stick' out his tongue.. If the tongue is 'crooked', if it goes to one side or the other
, that is also an indication of a stroke.

A cardiologist says if everyone who gets this e-mail sends it to 10 people; you can bet that at least one life will be saved.

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