Corporations Invite The Fox Into the Hen House

The title of the Wall Street Journal article reads: Firms Seek Government Mask Mandate.  It seems that some companies are asking their state governments to do what California’s Gavin Newsom and Washington’s (sleepy) Jay Inslee have done-issue statewide requirements that all persons wear face coverings when outside their homes.  The Journal says:

Rules vary by state and even by municipality, and some executives have said the issue would be simpler if the government ordered them to require masks so they could tell reluctant customers that they are simply abiding by regulations.

It seems that most big US airlines have been requiring all passengers to wear masks for months, but they would still like the Feds to make it a rule.  They don’t want flight attendants to get into arguments with passengers who remove masks in flight, and

a federal requirement that passengers wear masks in flight would make it easier for airlines to enforce their policies, according to some airline executives and union representatives. “If the government were to mandate it, I think that would help“, Delta Chief Executive Ed Bastian said in an interview with Axios. “If the government mandates it, then you can enforce it.”

Las Vegas casino workers have called on Nevada to mandate mask-wearing.  What a shame, that they have to fear their customers.

The biggest shame is that corporations are literally inviting the government into their companies, to set rules of behavior for their customers.  Normally, most big companies chafe at all the government rules and regulations they have to follow, but obviously not this time.

If I were they, I would be very careful of what they are asking, because once the government has its nose under their tent, they may look forward to more government rules that they did NOT want.

Photos

I have not had nearly enough opportunity these days to get outside with my camera.  So I thought I’d go back to the archive and find some of the photos that I’m fondest of.  Here are some.

Potholes Reservoir, Eastern Washington
Potholes Reservoir, Eastern Washington-site of ancient flood

For some reason, this photo of the Potholes Reservoir has been the most popular photo I have ever posted on my blog.  In my stats, list of “views”, this one comes up the most often.  I remember taking this, when I stopped there on my way to the Tri-Cities for a Pacific Northwest Purchasing Conference.  I went by myself, and gave myself enough time for stops whenever I found something picturesque.

Thirteen Bushtits at once on the suet feeder
Thirteen Common Bushtits on our Suet Feeder, January 2012

In the “lucky break” category, I was fortunate to capture this one, out my back door during a snowy period, which is fairly rare around here.  Bushtits normally travel in flocks, and they just loved that suet.

Mount Rainier over Puget Sound

I have always loved this one, which captures the natural beauty of Puget Sound.  It was taken from the deck of a Washington State Ferry on our way back from Kingston on the Kitsap Peninsula.  I always thought that Mount Rainier looked like it was floating in the sky.

Tranquil bench, Seattle Japanese Garden
Leafy glade with bench, Seattle Japanese Garden

The Seattle Japanese Garden is nearly 100 years old now, and extremely popular all year round.  It is very peaceful, with lots of nice benches where visitors can sit and contemplate the trees and shadows.  So many different shades of green!

ArchForming-Zion
Cliff, with signs of an arch forming. Zion National Park, Utah.

Just spectacular rock formations at Zion National Park.

Cactus-they look like space aliens!
A bunch of different kinds of barrel cactus.

I was actually surprised by how much I enjoyed the Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix.  Some of the cacti they have there look almost sinister, like they could break formation and attack you.

Sunset clouds
Sunset above the clouds

This one speaks for itself.

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I learned recently that Rush Limbaugh’s favorite bird is the pelican, so I immediately sent him this one that I took in 2018 in San Francisco Bay from the deck of the Crystal Symphony cruise ship.  Flying in a perfect “V” formation!

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Boats at Marina, Victoria

Taken at 7AM on a Sunday morning, with the calm water, and the boats at the marina inVictoria, BC, Canada.  No two boats are alike.

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Kilauea Volcano in Hawaii, when it was erupting.  We spent an hour off the coast of the Island of Hawaii, watching and listening as the lava flowed into the Pacific.  Real Fire and Brimstone-the power of Nature.

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Walls of Garden

Butchart Gardens on Vancouver Island.  You can lose yourself in there.  We first went there on our honeymoon in 2003, and we try to go back as often as we can.

I think the July 4 Holiday weekend will be a good time to get out and drive around our beautiful Pacific Northwest.

They’ve Got Us Right Where They Want Us (with thanks to a Ricochet friend for the idea)

Isolated from friends and family.

Schools closed, so our children cannot see or play with their friends; in fact, being taught to fear their friends.

Churches closed. Movie theaters, retail shops, bars and restaurants closed (these are all the places where we socialize together).

Stuck at home. Working from home, distant from colleagues and supervisors

Jobs lost, so people lose their sense of purpose in life.

Information about the disease itself, and about how individuals should respond to it, inconsistent and unreliable.

Government so-called “experts”, giving contradictory advice on a daily basis.  University computer “modelers” predicting apocalypse regularly, but changing the parameters so nothing is ever constant.

Elderly people in congregate-care facilities even more isolated, forbidden to see their own families, dying alone and in despair.

People required to wear a mask over their face, the one feature of the body that makes a person human.  Unseen: smiles of satisfaction, frowns of concern, kids’ tongues sticking out at their friends’ good-natured teasing.  Seen: lineups outside stores, dozens of people with no faces, just blank masks, Six Feet Apart

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Citizens encouraged by Governments to inform on neighbors and strangers; asked to turn in their neighbors for violations of mask-wearing and physical-distancing guidelines.  Re-creating the East German Stasi secret police in the United States of America.

And to add insult to injury, Summer Events that define the Summer season are cancelled.  July 4 festivities everywhere are cancelled; the Bellevue Arts & Crafts Fair is cancelled; the Seattle Chamber Music Festival concerts are cancelled in person-online just isn’t the same.  Not only do you have to go around wearing a mask, all of your social events are cancelled.  This is criminal, and very depressing to the populace.

They’ve got us right where they want us.  Cowed, afraid of our friends, neighbors, and coworkers.  Looking over our shoulders whenever we are away from home, watching everywhere for the snitches, just ready to call the enforcers to slap us with misdemeanor charges for refusing to hide behind the mask.  And if, as expected, the promised Wuhan Coronavirus Vaccine does NOT make its appearance any time soon, this state of affairs will be UNENDING.

They are Destroying American Society, with malice aforethought.  Be very careful of complying with every government “guideline”-they are leading you to disaster.

Are you ready to cower forever, afraid of an unseen virus that 96% of us, even if we get sick, will survive?  Not I, said the Patriot.

Calling All Citizens of the State of Washington: Defy Tyranny, Resist the Mandatory Wearing of Masks Outside the Home

The governor of the state of Washington, “Sleepy” Jay Dimslee, has issued a Proclamation, making it mandatory that ALL citizens wear face-covering masks whenever outside their homes.  This Edict applies to all citizens over the age of Two Years.  The Penalty for being caught without a mask over your face is a Misdemeanor Citation; as in, you will have a Criminal Record.  And the duration of this Edict is: Until there is a Vaccine against the deadly Wuhan Coronavirus.  Anyone willing to bet on when that might be? 18 months?  Two years?

There are some exceptions to this Mandate.  People with a medical condition that prevents them from wearing a mask are exempt, as are those actually eating in a restaurant.  Those are the only two exemptions.

Now, you parents out there, how many of you think you will be able to make your three- and four-year-old children wear a mask?  And what will you be teaching your children?  Why, you will be teaching them to FEAR Other People!  No, Johnny, when we go out to visit Aunt Mary, we all must wear masks so we don’t breathe Aunt Mary’s air.  Why?  Because we might catch a deadly disease from Aunt Mary.  Or She might catch a deadly disease from Us!

This unilateral Edict from the Holy Governor of the People of the State of Washington is not only unconstitutional (it is not a law passed by the legislature, and it has a criminal penalty, which is outside the jurisdiction of the Executive branch of government), it is practically unenforceable.  I wonder if local police and sheriffs will be happy about having to cite the thousands of Free Citizens of Washington for the crime of going outside the home unmasked.  How many Washington Citizens will be willing to add a new item of clothing to their daily wardrobe, and have to breathe in their own CO2 for at least another full year?

Not I, said the Free Citizen of Washington State.  I am not a Serf, bound to my Master in Olympia, and I will not comply.

Free Citizens, Join Me in Defying Tyranny!  Resist the Mask Mandate!  Stand up for your Constitutional Rights to Freely Assemble.

Lens-Artists Challenge #102 – A Quiet Place

In this very noisy world, where you are always surrounded by man-made sounds, it can take a long search to find a really quiet place.  It also depends on how you define “quiet”. Can a quiet place have people in it, or do you have to be alone to have quiet?  Can you be indoors, or must you be outdoors?  As my friend Hank Barr says, the answer to nearly any question is, “It depends”.  It’s my opinion that the reason 20th Century music can be discordant or atonal is due in part to the increasing noise in the man-made environment, including automobiles, machinery, and recordings that can be played at ear-splitting volume.  Horse-drawn wagons and carriages didn’t make much noise, but that big cement truck sure makes a lot of noise!

Back in October of 2012, Hubby and I traveled to the East Coast, and we got to spend part of a day on the beach at Cape May, New Jersey.  Cape May is a big tourist destination, and during the summer months the beaches are crowded with throngs of vacationers taking up every square foot of sand.  In October, however, all the crowds have gone, the streets are empty (you can even find a parking place on the street!), and the beach is empty of swimmers and sunbathers.  We were fortunate to get excellent weather, too, with sunny skies and temperatures in the 70s.  It felt really weird to have the broad expanse of beach almost entirely to ourselves.

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It was almost eerily quiet, except for the sound of the Atlantic Ocean waves breaking. The constant sound of ocean waves is very calming, and contributes to the sense of quiet.

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Now, the beach wasn’t entirely empty.  We did have some avian company.

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Birds, Cape May, NJ

We enjoyed watching the mixed flock of Skimmers, Terns, and Gulls.

Back from the beach, behind the dunes, is a quiet pond, with swans and ducks swimming. Here’s a trio of Shoveler Ducks, one in a most undignified position.

Shovelers

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Cape May is a very popular vacation destination.  On the East Coast, there is a tradition of people taking vacation lodgings for the summer season, and the town is filled with big houses where dozens of families rent for weeks or the whole summer.  In October, those houses were mostly empty and quiet.

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The street was lined with these big, beautiful houses, which just had to be vacation rentals.  You could imagine the sounds of summer, with children running around and calling to each other, and cars going by.  But at this time, it was almost eerily quiet.

It’s almost hard to believe that this vacation destination could actually ever be this subdued, but with the people gone back to their cities, it’s a nice place to visit for some peace and quiet.  We were very lucky that we went when we did.  A few days later, Superstorm Sandy hit, and this beach wasn’t quite so peaceful or quiet.

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Hillsdale College Resists Pressure by “Black Lives Matter” Supporters

Hillsdale College Resists Pressure by “Black Lives Matter” Supporters

And Good for Hillsdale!  Hillsdale College admitted black students and women from its founding in 1844.  This illustrates its genuine Virtue of action, as distinct from the virtue-signaling demonstrated by companies and colleges pandering to the segregationist Black Lives Matter movement.

In this article at the Washington Free Beacon Web site (a must-read for any conservative), the author describes how students and alumni of Hillsdale have tried to pressure the College to issue a statement backing the group.  Hillsdale’s response is exactly right.

Please support Hillsdale College in its mission of promoting Learning, Family, Faith, and Freedom.

There is no hope for Seattle. More confirmation, June 16.

The City of Seattle is lost.  The City is no longer controlled by its elected officials, no matter how Left and Socialist they are.  The City government, and many private businesses surrendered to Antifa and the Black Lives Matter terror groups [I define them both as terror groups due to their methods, including arson, looting, vandalism, and illegal “occupation” of public rights-of-way].  The Police Chief of Seattle negotiates with the so-called “protestors”, thus granting them status.  And no one thinks anything of it.

Here are some reasons why Seattle is lost.

Seattle City Council OKs ban of “crowd control weapons”.

Capitol Hill Trader Joe’s store closed indefinitely following Black Lives Matter protests.

Visitors go to the Capitol Hill Occupied Protest Zone

From Wobblies to CHAZ, Seattle has a long history of protests.

CHAZ changes its name to CHOP to better reflect demonstrations’ message.

Thousands participate in Seattle Children’s March.

[ED: New stories today, June 16. It gets worse]

Seattle reaches agreement with occupiers.   Agreement includes the Seattle Department of Transportation replacing wooden barriers with concrete ones!  Seattle Government Agency is helping the terrorists occupy City territory.  Seattle considers the “occupiers” to be the City’s equal.  This is frankly disgusting.  You don’t negotiate with terrorists, you  rout them.

Seattle business owner near occupied zone detains robbery suspect, calls police. Police do not respond.   Now we know who is more important in Seattle.  And it isn’t the law-abiding business-owning taxpayers of the City.

Seattle City Council mulls bills repealing loitering crimes for drug offenders, sex workers.  This speaks for itself.  With no police to enforce the law, we simply repeal the law.  Welcome to Lawless Seattle.

Are you ready for the “socially-distant” future?

Are you ready for the “socially-distant” future?

This afternoon, I was reading my Wall Street Journal from a few days ago (I still take the old-fashioned print edition, and I am always behind), and I noticed more than one article that, taken together, got me to thinking some very uncomfortable thoughts.

I have read more than one article describing the “new office”, brought about by the Wuhan Coronavirus.  Most big offices in large cities were shut down by government decree in March and April, resulting in thousands of workers being laid off, furloughed, or directed to work from home to avoid contagion.  With some offices now allowed to reopen, companies are having to totally rethink their office layouts, so their employees can be “kept safe”.  The bolded chapter heading is “Distancing and Cleanliness”.  In the office of the very near future (like tomorrow), “Among the first priorities is figuring out how to maintain social distancing in an office.”  Software applications will now govern where and how employees interact.  Meetings will be smaller and less frequent, and employee desks will be further apart [thus cutting down on employee interaction]; “density sensors” may prevent too many employees in any one room at a time; all surfaces will be obsessively cleaned all day every day.

In the new office building, elevators will not be allowed to hold more than two people, and all the buttons will either be gone or changed to some kind of “no-touch” technology. Many will still work from home, and their colleagues in the office will hold Zoom meetings when they need to be in a group discussion.  A researcher at the Interdisciplinary Center for Healthy Workplaces at UC Berkeley advises “bringing employees together virtually now to share ideas on how to re-establish social bonds while maintaining social distancing.”[italics mine]

Then, there’s the article on the New Hospital.  The ideas in that article are extremely depressing to me.  The title is “Rethinking the Hospital for the Next Pandemic”.  Here are some phrases from that article.  What does this make you think?

A future where such crises [the Wuhan Coronavirus Pandemic] may become a grim fact of life.

 

These changes promise to markedly reduce risk and disease spread-and change the way people experience care even in times when there is no crisis.

 

…it will also become less hands-on than people have come to expect.

 

…come up with ways to keep patients out of those [waiting]rooms.

 

…remotely triaging patients before they even arrive.

 

…an iPad rigged on a four legged robot called Spot allows staffers to see patients from a safe distance in the ER or a triage tent outside, via a video assessment and a thermal-imaging camera to measure breathing rate.

 

Keeping Doctors and Patients at a Distance.

 

To make it safer for patients and staff alike, some hospitals are trying to limit contact.

 

In intensive-care units, instead of placing IV poles and monitors next to the patient, they are now positioned outside the room so nurses can check patients’ status without unnecessary exposure for both…

 

For example, he says, newly-diagnosed heart-disease patients, who need frequent checkups and possibly adjustments to their medications, could use the [electronic] system to relay important data to their doctors remotely.

The above observations are scary enough in themselves, but then I was thinking about the “vulnerable elderly” who are confined to nursing homes, or live in various other congregate long-term-care environments like assisted-living communities.  In the Wuhan Coronavirus pandemic, thousands of such vulnerable elderly people died alone, in their rooms, forbidden to see family and friends in their final days.  For some reason, the idea of a video visit on an iPad sounds cold and unfriendly to me.

It is well-known that human beings are social animals.  Isolation is used as punishment in prisons and even by mothers with unruly children who send them to their rooms as a “time-out”.  It is also well-known that human babies need close contact with their mothers to thrive and grow.  Children neglected by their parents and not held or cuddled can waste away, or become depressed or anxious.

The idea of isolation being the theme of the “new office” or the “new hospital” is very unpleasant.  It is not a nice thought, that starting now, we need to be afraid of our coworkers, and even our doctors.  It is uncomfortable to have to go through life in fear of every other human being you encounter, but it appears that those designing physical spaces, and medical care facilities, will now be doing their best to minimize contact among all employees and clients.  It is not fun to think that your hairdresser, your manicurist, and your doctor, are now afraid of you.

I am in the age-group that is now defined as “vulnerable”, and it scares me shitless to think of what it will be like if I ever have to go to a hospital for any reason.  Will I be held at arms-length by everyone I encounter?  Will I be prevented from having any visitors, including my husband?  Will I be forced to suffer, and maybe even die, alone?  This is abhorrent to me, and I plan to do everything I can to avoid that kind of future.

I wonder how many others think this kind of future is a nightmare?  How many of you out there are horrified with the physical environment that will, by design, keep others away from you?  We humans require others around us, for celebrations, concerts, sports, and restaurant meals.  Will we all agree to give up things like handshakes when meeting a new colleague, or hugs when comforting a friend who has suffered a loss?  I hope and pray that my fellow people will not go happily into the “socially-distant” future without putting up a fight.

Power. The Power of Nature.

Can you watch this, and not know that Nature is more powerful than you are?  This is a source of the inexpensive hydro-electric power that we in the Pacific Northwest rely on.  That river flows day and night, summer and winter, with no interruptions.  Flow is heavier when fed by Spring runoff when mountain snow melts.  This is Snoqualmie Falls in Spring.  Listen to the Power.