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When Alice went down the rabbit hole in Lewis Carol’s novel, Alice and Wonderland, she experienced all kinds of unpleasant surprises. What kind of surprises will we Americans face if our government bombs Iran?

The last time the United States went down the Iranian rabbit hole was in 1953, almost 60 years ago. In 1953 the United States and England engineered a coup that replaced a popular elected leader in Iran, Mohammad Mossadegh, with a cruel tyrant, the Shah Pahlavi. The consequences of that intervention have been disastrous, not just for the citizens of the United States but for the whole world.


Last week, a crazy news story circulated on the internet about Los Angeles County adopting new legislation that would impose $1000 fines on beach goers who tossed frisbees or footballs. I had visions of writing about the return of Baywatch star, David Hasselhoff in his new role as The Beach Nazi. Every week, his Gestapo-like tactics would snare enemies of the state who thought they had the right to have some fun in the sun.

This sounded like a great topic of ridicule for those kooky Californians. However, the story quickly was tamed by those pesky internet fact-checkers. The reported $1000 citations in the beach ordinance were for things like discharging a firearm or public nudity while footballs and frisbees only garnered a measly $100 fine and that could only incur after a warning was given. So, the $1000 frisbee fine theoretically was possible if the thrower was naked. Or, would that be a combination fine of $1100?


It’s a funny thing when you try to reverse 30 or 40 years of public policy in a single year. Some people don’t like it.

So, they show up and unfurl banners in protest. They send out nasty emails. They write critical pieces that end up in newspapers.

Such is the life of the Republican majority in the North Carolina General Assembly. The policy shifts that they embarked upon this past year are nothing short of remarkable.


Colloquialisms come and go but the current usage of “sustainability” appears that it can, well – be sustained. The beauty of the term is that it is a one-word expression with its meaning clearly defined. Two local news stories relate to sustainability. Franklin’s Taste of Scotland (TOS) festival has come to an apparent end after a long run and the Macon County Planning Board looks like it’s going to implode.

There were 15 consecutive incarnations of the Scottish festival. M*A*S*H was a great TV series lasting 11 seasons, but, it too, completed its cycle. In either case, lack of perpetuity is hardly a sign of failure.



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