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Sunday, December 16, 2007

Hold the (World) Phone

A fierce north wind blew in and tilted Clear Lake, exposing old pilings from a long-gone pier extending out into the lake that had been hidden inches under the surface, waiting to rip out the bottom of an unsuspecting boater. Pelicans have taken advantage of the temporary sitting posts. Other parts of the lake are now mud flats.

Yesterday I met the anniversary date and switched phones on my plan, going from a Treo to a Blackberry World phone. There is no comparison.

The Treo had stopped accessing the internet and was hard to sync. The Blackberry 8830 synced over 1,100 entries right away, and in a few seconds. The Treo is as heavy as a brick; the Blackberry World Edition is light as a feather, and slim. It even dials number by voice, a major safety improvement over trying to "dial and drive."

The baseball scandal over steroid use by something like 80 sports players can't go without comment.

We seem to have a double standard even on illegal use of drugs. Marion Jones loses her Olympic medal for "juicing" while baseball players sign multiple million dollar contracts. This sets a horrible example for millions of kids. Their conduct encourages hundreds of thousands of young boys to think that bulking up on drugs is the way to win, even if it kills them. It says "cheating to win" is OK, and very profitable!

While baseball players and radio jocks walk free despite abusing drugs, hundreds of thousands are locked up for possession or use of other illegal drugs.

That does not sound like American justice or American values. We should treat all drug users the same -- or change the laws so that is the result. Why should a kid caught with pot go to jail while the kid "juicing" on steroids gets a multi-million dollar sports contract?

Anything less diminishes our unique American values of equality, justice and truth. Steroid or Oxycontin (sp?) use is more dangerous than Marijuana, so this does not make sense.

The good news is that there was a last minute deal in Bali, Indonesia to begin addressing global warming on a worldwide scale -- no leaving out developing countries like India and China.

I couldn't believe the U.S. delegates attending initially refused to offer to help with clean technology - they deserved to be booed for that idiot position. It's like the spoiled rich kid refusing to chip in for the poker hand, while expecting everyone else to donate. Out of 200 countries, ours was not willing to set a real timetable to address this issue. It reminds me of the story of the mother watching a parade and says: "They are all out of step except for my son!"

To their credit, the American delegation changed their mind and made the offer to help with "clean technology" and some money, etc.

Scientists say that we have at most 10 years to make the changes we need to avoid catastrophic climate degradation that will negatively impact or child and grand children's -- and future generations -- future.

That should have been a "no-brainer." Instead we have leadership with no brains.

Americans ask me "why people hate us." World polls show our image is now in the dirt. If attitudes toward Americans have gone down, it is because of this type of strange behavior coming from DC.

Being the only country on the entire planet that has opposed taking any action to avoid a global environmental disaster that affects all of us would provide a reason for them to feel that way.

The fact that we consist of only 5% of the world's population and yet burn 33% of the energy makes us look wasteful and arrogant, as Mr. Huckabee recently stated.

Bali marks a first step in a long journey. The Chinese have a saying that a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. It's time to use our world phones to continue that journey towards a greater American future and a better image.

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