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I was amazed, this little town of 1700 people, and the Roman candles went on for hours, very beautiful! No organized fireworks show; but all you had to do was look out the window...a clear night, with stars and a lovely gibbous moon!

The celebration of our Independence Day...a special tug at my heart now, a sorrow, because I am looking at the possibilities that our politics, our economy, might not be as stable forever as I have always assumed... that we might be in more trouble than I ever thought...this beautiful dream of freedom and justice for all...

So last night was lovely for me, and bittersweet as well.


4 Answers


In NY State, private fireworks are illegal (even sparklers have been outlawed by Big Brother! ), but that didn't stop a few lawbreakers from having a good time.  :ninja: :D

Virginia TheOtherTink

Well O'Tink, I hope Big Brother was able to just wink at those "lawbreakers"...!  8-)

TheOtherTink TheOtherTink

Virginia, Big Brother is mainly interested in raking in the money with fines and taxes. :angry:

Virginia TheOtherTink

O'Tink, for the first time in my life, I am concerned; going beyond good-natured grumbling, I actually do have some concern now. 

TheOtherTink TheOtherTink

Virginia, even (usually liberal) Bill Maher has some concerns, much to the consternation of Rachel Maddow. :D

Virginia TheOtherTink

O'Tink, I am so politically unaware that I had to look up and see who Rachel Maddow is...and typically I would be cautious about MSNBC as excessively liberal bias, but here is what I found on Wikipedia, and I love it!

"Maddow replied, 'I'm undoubtedly a liberal, which means that I'm in almost total agreement with the Eisenhower-era Republican party platform.' "  :D

Now I will watch your YouTube clip, ty...O'Kay, my impression; the clip seems to me, goes off into rich v. poor bickering. If we USA are truly in trouble, then we need to go deeper than that.

TheOtherTink TheOtherTink

Yes, Virginia, the problems do run deeper than rich vs poor bickering.

And of course, Maddow is lying through her teeth about being for the Eisenhower Republicans. Like most other media personalities, she would have been "Madly for Adlai." :D


Virginia TheOtherTink

O'Tink, I can actually remember the 1952 presidential election, the first time Stevenson and Eisenhower ran against each other...I would have been eight years old...

I recall it because my parents laughed and joked, as one voted for Eisenhower and the other for Stevenson...canceling each other's vote! Then later, I learned bout that wonderful episode (true, I believe?) where a Stevenson supporter called out "Any thinking person would vote for you!"

...to which Stevenson famously responded, "That's not enough, Madam, we need a majority..."

idk, I will always admire Eisenhower, but looking through the Internet information, I myself might possibly have voted for Stevenson...tending a bit to contrarian, perhaps...

TheOtherTink TheOtherTink

What is really amusing, Virginia, is that the liberal northern Democrats of the mid-20th century had an uneasy alliance with the segregationist conservative Dixiecrats from the South, and Stevenson's VP running mate, Sen. John Sparkman of Alabama, had opposed the civil rights initiatives of Truman. To h*ll with principles, power is what counts, and Stevenson was no exception to that rule in accepting Sparkman.  :D


Virginia TheOtherTink

O'Tink...rushing now...just wanted you and Marianne to know that again, I might be in a place without access to Internet for a few days. So if I disappear for a while, that is why!

I am going to keep your messages this morning in my inbox, and hope to respond soon...

TheOtherTink TheOtherTink

Ok, Virginia, have fun:)

Virginia TheOtherTink

O'Tink, I did not open your link...your information is typically reliable, to the best of your ability...

Here is what concerns me; I am thinking that back in the Fifties, yes the system was sick with power kinds of motives, Sparkman and such...but at that time, still viable...flexible...amenable to change and the possibility of improving access to redress, as in the FDR era after the Great Depression. However, have we now passed a point of some kind...the notion that we are no longer in a society having problems, but that we may be in a society dying...?

I am quite sure I recall you are devotional? Thus familiar with the idea that something out of harmony with the law of love cannot survive indefinitely...

That is my concern now. I am looking through US history, certainly fraught with bloody contention, is there a qualitative difference now, something that got frozen in hopelessness? Hope not...but I am worried now, and ever more glad I took that stand I did in Iowa.

TheOtherTink TheOtherTink

@ Virginia,

Paradoxically, I think that the unnatural alliance between northern liberal Democrats and southern Dixiecrats was a stabilizing influence that kept the Democrats from veering too far to the loony left, which I think too many of them have now done.

And the Republicans occupied the center at that time, for the most part, with the notable exception of Joseph McCarthy.  But since the realignment of the South toward the Republicans, the Republicans have gone too far to the right, and so now we have the present polarization between the parties.

And no, it's not good for the country. :(

Virginia TheOtherTink

As we were researching this last week, O'Tink, I do recall reading that 1956 (I think) was the last election that a bloc of southern states voted Democrat - a holdover from Civil War era, still voting against the (Republican) party of Lincoln.

Just now, I googled McCarthy; and learned about the suicide of a more liberal senator from Wyoming, believed to be in response to pressure from the McCarthy group. And after that, the McCarthy influence waned...then 1954 McCarthy himself was officially censured by the senate, and a few years later died from acute hepatitis officially, but rumored to be alcoholism - only 48 y/o...such suffering...no one came out well.

TheOtherTink TheOtherTink

Yes, it's funny.

The South kept voting against Republicans, and New England kept voting for them, long after that party ceased being liberal. Maine and Vermont were the only two states that went against FDR in 1936.

Virginia TheOtherTink

Just to let you know I saw your information, O'Tink...yes, I am reading about this idea of worker self-directed enterprises as an alternative to the repeated crashes of capitalism. And the problem I see is that people MUST keep themselves well informed...and that just does not seem to happen.

TheOtherTink TheOtherTink

@ Virginia,

Sure, co-operative enterprises are well worth a try, although I think they have been around for at least 100 years in one form or another.

One problem with smaller enterprises is that they don't have much of a financial cushion if their product suffers a slump in demand. I think small businesses have a very high failure rate, lasting on average maybe five years before they have to close, especially restaurants.  I noticed that recently when I visited Boston/Cambridge. Half of my old college haunts were gone!  :'(

Heck, even large corporations die after maybe 100 years, typically. Sears and JC Penney are in big trouble, and where did FW Woolworth go? Even GM and Chrysler only survived because of a govt bailout.

Virginia TheOtherTink

Yes, so true, O'Tink!


Actually? It was the most quiet Fourth of July that I can remember! I put my steak on my BBQ and grabbed a beer and waited for the fireworks from the Mall and there wasn't any! I just came back in the house and watched The Twilight Zone marathon!


The fireworks were great. Our neighbors let off some great ones. Almost better than the big ones at the beach around the corner. All we had to do was look out our back porch and we had a great view. It lasted about twenty minutes. They did a great service for the neighborhood. ;)

Virginia carbonproduct

CP, it seems no matter how old I get, I never get tired of fireworks! The difference is...when I was younger, I would actually travel out to see them, blanket, picnic supper the whole works...now I wait for them to come to me...

carbonproduct carbonproduct

Thats how it is with me. Here in Savannah, we have a giant St Patrick's day parade. I used to watch it live but now I watch it from my television set. This year I wont because we dont have cable anymore. We stopped cable because of the ridiculous price and now only have internet. Its amazing how much you can get on UTUBE alone. I love it. 

Virginia carbonproduct

Hi Carbon Product,

Well, I am glad to hear from someone else who doesn't want to pay for cable...the advertisements are given almost equal time now. I felt like I was paying for people to aggressively pitch to me for things I did not even want!

And I also find much of interest and often authentic learning value on YouTube.


Hello everybody!

Even if there was no firework, I hope that all of you could relax and spend a nice day with family, friends or cheerful acquaintances, or with your preferred activities. 

And I hope that nobody had to cure a bad hangover this morning.




Virginia Marianne

Ha ha, no Marianne no hangover for me...I do love to drink alcohol, but now age 72, I keep it down to somewhere between zero and three drinks per annum...

Marianne Marianne

Lol - me neither, anyway, I was often the driver of our groups, or visitors, so, I did (do) not mind going without or - at most - a fine drop with a good meal, from time to time, all the more that my stomach was (is) a bit difficult with the quality of beverages and food.

And, well - T(h)ink will appreciate - quite a few sparkling drinks and certain foods can produce a bit too much "gas" - lol. But there have been also some very cheerful and funny occasions outdoors, where it was "less stiff" - lol.


Virginia Marianne

;)  Agreed!

Virginia Marianne

Marianne, I have left a message for O'Tink...not sure but for a few days I MIGHT be in a place without good Internet access...so there is a possibility I could be incommunicado for a while!

Marianne Marianne

Well, Virginia - if you are taking some holidays or a break, I hope that you will enjoy your free days away from the computer.

Lately, I was not so present, and out very often, or "on-and-off" constantly. We had already two heat waves here, with tropical nights, and they have been very tiring. Only this early morning, we had a good shower, and, finally, more normal temperatures.

Marianne Marianne


Marianne Marianne

And we had also quite a few nice beer events too - also in San Francisco - lol.


Virginia Marianne

 Marianne, I never learned to actually LIKE beer, but SF is where I finally found a brand I could tolerate, at least...Olde English 800...:'(

Marianne Marianne

Lol - Virginia, I am suspecting a rather "strong" beer:



which reminds me of one of our later evening "bar events" (in SF, of course) - to close the day after the meetings, visits, conferences and excursions:

celebrating with a group of South Korean visitors:

and the taste was pleasant - yummy ...


Virginia Marianne

Oh Marianne, the video is so FUNNY!

Now ima look at your link for the Olde English Malt Liquor...I think I actually liked the name and the bottle the most...

...and now I am MAD! ...because according to your link, my beloved Olde English has been bought out by Big Beer, owned by the Miller Company since 1999...yuck...

Marianne Marianne

Lol - you are not the only one to deplore the "loss" of an appreciated quality brand or product to some big business; we lost quite a few small, but great breweries, but the story of the "Cardinal" beer and its brewery still hurts. It was bought up, then the brewery in Fribourg was closed and the production of the "Cardinal" beer outsourced.

Sadly enough, many local productions, brands and specialties involving various kinds of products have been bought up and closed down, and certain productions outsourced - often abroad.

Too many ancient, historical or traditional products are not protected:






Virginia Marianne

Marianne, I did not know about PDO = Protected Designation of Origin...

However, in reading about capitalism and its problems, I did come upon the story of a small brewery in California; only 118 employees, but the owner did not want his beer ever to pass into the ownership of Big Beer (as he called it).

So, he is slowly transferring ownership of the brewery to his 118 employees. He says he refuses to 'toss a grenade over his shoulder on the way out the door.' Now I see what he means, from your comments about the small beer companies getting bought up and then outsourced!

Marianne Marianne

Yes, Virginia, that is the example for sustainability, there are no big profits, but there is enough for the community on the long term, if the successors manage, produce quality and plan wisely, as before.

Virginia Marianne

:D  Hurrah for quality and wisdom!