Saturday, December 3, 2011


Big question -- are we into an age of Nature's fury -- rains, hurricanes, tornados, earthquakes, fires, floods?

Em wonders if there is solution, and can't help thinking about Al Gore -- how he's been warning us for more than a decade, that many things we are doing on a daily basis, are causing weather woes.

The Cullums don't disagree, but Em worries, John, who isn't a worrier, takes things. handles things specifically as they happen.

Thursday, December 1, 2011


What Anita Hill did 20 years ago is burned in my mind. We remember moments like O.J. sweating, holding up his hands to show that the leather gloves didn't fit. I remember how embarrassed Anita Hill was, sweating, determinedly truthful, describing Thomas quizzing her about pubic hair on a coke can.

She gained national attention in 1991 when she alleged, at Clarence Thomas' Senate confirmation hearings for the Supreme Court post, that Thomas had made provocative and harassing sexual statements, when he was her supervisor.

Grilled by 14 white Senators on national TV, Hill testified that while they worked together, Thomas made sexual overtures, described pornographic films, and bragged repeatedly and graphically, about his sexual prowess.

Watching her on television, I was impressed and amazed at her poise and the courage it took to testify at the hearing. I couldn't help thinking what I would have done had I been in her situation as an employee -- what will happen to her -- will this blight her life, embitter her -- how will she be able to pursue a career as a lawyer?

What happened -- well, she took a polygraph test that found that her statements were true. He declined the test, calling it a "high tech lynching."

Nevertheless, the Senate confirmed Clarence Thomas by a 52 to 48 vote.

Today, Justice Thomas is in history books. He has a great life and great job. He's been married to Virginia Lamp since 1987. Professor Anita Hill, age 56, has never married. She writes, lectures, is teaching law at Brandeis University's prestigious law school.

Off and on, over the years, liberals and conservatives have attacked Justice Thomas, claiming his decisions are based on his personal needs and political beliefs. Last year, Virginia, founder of a Tea Party activist group that's funded by a personal friend of her husband's, got lots of media attention for her group after she phoned Anita Hill and left a voice mail message asking Anita for an apology.

It was ugly, and inappropriate. Anita handled it briefly, didn't let it become a an important issue. She brushed it off.

I admire her and like her. I met her at a celebrity dinner party where she was one of the guests of honor. She was friendly, easily accessible, and fun to talk to -- a very educated professional who's going on with her work stronger than ever. She loves teaching, and appears quite often on TV. Her articles are published in the NY Times, Newsweek, and in scholarly publications.

What happened to her on television in 1991 has affected many working women. Though Hill didn't specifically claim legal "Sexual Harassment," the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission logged a record 9,920 harassment complaints in the past year, 50% more than the previous year, despite the fact victims know it's difficult to get their cases resolved. A recent Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll, said 44% of voters think Hill was telling the truth, while support for Thomas' version of events has declined from 40% to 34%.

Anita Hill's autobiography "Speaking Truth to Power" was published in 1998. Her second book, "Reimagining Equality" was published a few weeks ago.

Boston reporter summarizes what happened 20 years ago. As you listen to what Anita says about it today, you get a sense of a strong, down-to-earth, womanly woman.

Here's the link

Tuesday, November 29, 2011


It is creeping in -- into our language, into our day-to-day feelings, into what we do for fun, and what we talk about seriously.

Do you trust the written word? I don't.

News reports? do you trust them? Are we being told everything?


Is what we are being told shaded by the guy who's conveying the facts?

Definitely yes.

Do you trust authorities, experts, past presidents, authors, generals, statesmen, financial whiz guys, inventors (like Steven Jobs)?

No. I think they're conveying what they believe and what they want us to believe.

Do you trust banks, car manufacturers, and hey -- do you trust doctors?

Holy smoke, who do you trust?

The current White House? The President?

(I'm hearing mmms, and maybes, lots of I dunno's.

What about the food you buy? Canned goods? Johnson and Johnson products? Drugstore brands?

No, no, no.

Nothing can be trusted. There are thousands of hands that are involved and they can't all be washed, and they belong to bodies that are attached to brains of individuals,. and each individual who lives now, has the un-sureities, insecurities, doubts -- experiences that I've had that makes me unsure of everything I've mentioned thus far.

Golly, we weren't unsure -- we flew, we soared around when we elected Obama. But now, with the media spider spinning its web, telling us how to feel, what to feel, what not to feel, what's new, what's old, what's right and wrong, we are trapped. Because the media spiders themselves are disillusioned, trapped in the spider webbing of the advertisers, big spiders, who are trapped in the corporate communal web spun by groups of spiders -- giant mesh nets that are covering land, buildings. whole cities, whole states even.

The sense of feeling free, able, capable of standing on our own two feet has been squeezed, pressed down into a lump.

We've got a stuck Congress, a president who can't move, a lot of unreal hot air talk about taxes and debt ceiling and health care that make people who can't get jobs seem like ants, tiny living creatures worrying about survival underneath the giant mesh blanket that's laying on top of our daily world.

Hey hold on -- I am one person. Many "one" persons, single persons, are feeling what I'm feeling.

Like me they're sad about people not working and confused by the liars, cheaters, dissimulators, whose best seller book -- words, articles, on-camera opinions and misinformation -- are smack dab everywhere.

Okay , I'll name some good things.
[1] My books are going to be published.
[2] As I blogger, I have figured out better what I ought be writing about.
[3] Things that cross my mind that I am feeling and express, are things that others are feeling. Yes, it helps me if I say what's on my mind, and it helps them to hear that what they're feeling is also bothering me

So my disillusionment creates a unity, and in unity the illusion of beauty, good things, hopeful things becomes reality.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

BAD GUYS (video)

No doubt about it -- the Cullums can't stop complaining about the major corporations, they don't trust.

Top of the list of un-favorite things are the guys who are promoting, with carefully constructed campaigns, reasons for us to support them, buy their products, and buy into the idea that they are altruistically helping us lead better lives.

Yes, it's Halliburton, Oil Companies, and Fracking.

Plus, our friends say they hate: Dems, Repubs Do-Nothing Politicians, Bank of America, Time Warner, Monsanto, Subcommittee in DC, Comcast. Talipia, Blue Fin GMO Fish, High Fructose Syrup. Planned Parenthood, Penn Football Coach, Godfather Pizza, Russ Limbaugh, Skinny Fashion Models, Herman Cain, Religious Zealots, Coco-Cola, Doomsday Predictions.

Even so, John's pet hate is medical ads. Em hates their mattress. John tries, but can't comfort Em when she calls the manufacturers "Big fat Liars!"