OCTOBER 1, 2004

These are the Ramblings of a small town, (Holden, population 2,700), Missouri, country lawyer. They contain my random thoughts and observations on current events and my life and experiences in the Solo Practice of law.
Compiled here are the Ramblings for 2002 - 2004. 

Archived Prior Ramblings

In Memorium:
September 11, 2001

  02-22-02  03-30-02  04-05-02
  04-21-02  04-27-02  05-01-02
  05-03-02  05-10-02  05-17-02
  05-31-02  06-21-02  06-26-02
  06-29-02  07-04-02  07-05-02
  07-12-02  08-02-02  08-10-02
  08-21-02  08-23-02  08-30-02
  09-06-02  09-11-02  09-11-02F
  09-13-02  09-20-02  09-27-02
  10-04-02  10-11-02  10-18-02
  10-25-02  11-01-02  11-08-02
  11-15-02  11-22-02  11-29-02
  12-06-02  12-13-02  12-20-02

  01-03-03  01-10-03  01-10-03R
  01-17-03  01-24-03  01-31-03
  02-07-03  02-14-03  02-21-03
  02-28-03  03-07-03  03-14-03
  03-21-03  03-28-03  04-04-03
  04-11-03  04-18-03  04-25-03
  05-02-03  05-09-03  05-16-03
  05-23-03  05-30-03  06-06-03
  06-20-03  06-27-03  07-04-03
  07-11-03  07-18-03  07-25-03
  08-01-03  08-08-03  08-15-03
  08-22-03  08-29-03  09-05-03
  09-12-03  09-19-03  09-26-03
  10-03-03  10-10-03  10-17-03
  10-24-03  10-31-03  11-07-03
  11-14-03  11-21-03  11-28-03
  12-05-03  12-12-03  12-19-03

  01-02-04  01-09-04  01-16-04
  01-23-04  01-30-04  02-06-04
  02-13-04  02-20-04  02-27-04
  03-05-04  03-12-04  03-19-04
  03-29-04  04-02-04  04-09-04
  04-16-04  04-23-04  04-30-04
  05-07-04  05-14-04  05-21-04
  05-28-04  06-11-04  06-18-04
  06-25-04  07-09-04  07-16-04
  07-23-04  07-30-04  08-06-04
  08-13-04  08-20-04  08-27-04
  09-03-04  09-10-04  09-17-04
  09-24-04  10-01-04
Greets and Huggers.  Posted the evening of October 1, 2004.  While driving to court this week, I was struck by the number of SUV's and pickup trucks on the road.  They didn't look loaded down:  just the driver going to work or running errands.  When my "work" vehicle was the Durango,  I would have to fill up twice a week, close to $40.00 each time.  My Durango averaged 14 miles per gallon).  My Miata, averages 36 miles per gallon. [EarthTrends is a Website that maintains/tracks searchable databases on natural resource consumption by region:  it, as well as the 2000 Census,  is the source of the data I site in these Ramblings]  The price of oil hit $50.00 a barrel this week ... the highest it has been in 20 years. Between 1990 and 2000, we had a 12% increase in population, a 16% increase in oil consumption, (while at the same time, having a 17% DECREASE in the number of passenger vehicles per thousand persons) and a 35% increase in the amount of oil we import.  Both Bush and Kerry have a plan:  the common denominator, increased oil PRODUCTION. Production!?! How about a focus on oil/energy CONSERVATION or developing alternate energy paradigms?  How about giving a tax credit/exemption, for vehicles which are energy efficient, (say, 50+ miles per gallon) and abrogating the tax credit for SUV's?  On a side note:  "International, the operating company of Navistar International Corporation (NYSE: NAV) and a leading truck manufacturer, officially unveiled the International CXT on Thursday, Sept. 16, at its plant in Garland, Texas."  It is the "tractor" part of an 18 wheeler with a short pickup bed. It gets 7 miles per gallon and a tax credit of $90,000.00 to $130,000.00. There is a waiting list.  Park your SUV and believe it or not, with gas prices being what they are, on a monthly basis, the payment for a small "personal" vehicle, a subcompact, (including gas), is less than what you would pay for gas for your SUV: do the math!  If you could save money and reduce our dependence on foreign oil, by parking your SUV and/or using it when you actually NEED the functionality and buying a small "personal" vehicle to make "docket calls" or run errands, why wouldn't you do so?   <whispering> .... Dude!  ...  there really is NO correlation between the size of your vehicle ... and your penis!!!  'Nuff said.

The miracles of modern science:  good news for Lady folks suffering from HSDD, (Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder: a persistent lack of desire or absence of sexual fantasies in women.):   "Intrinsa" has been put on the fast track for approval by the Food and Drug Administration, (FDA). It is a female testosterone patch.  Doesn't it make you feel good to know our pharmaceutics industry is working on a chemical cure for a woman's inability to have sexual fantasies, (sure will give "Romance Novels" a run for the money!)   "Unlike Viagra, which men take a few hours before intercourse, Intrinsa takes three to four weeks to start working  ...  Gynecologists warned that testosterone  ... can cause a woman's voice to deepen and body hair to grow..."    ...   <shuddering>  ...  I don't even want to think of what 3 to 4 weeks of foreplay, with a really hairy Lady, who moans her encouragement, in a deep baritone,  would be like!!  Course from what I have seen as a divorce lawyer, there truly is, no accounting for taste!  ... or as my Dear Friend Jim Pennoyer noted: "there truly is someone for everyone, somehow, at least for some period of time.")  And, in another medicine related press release"Nastech Pharmaceutical Company Inc.  of Bothell, Wash., said Monday its compound, known as PYY for short, could help address not only the nation's obesity epidemic but related health problems such as diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, arthritis and cancer."  PYY is a nasal spray, which, when inhaled prior to eating, makes you feel full sooner, resulting in weight loss.  The only known side effect:  loss of appetite ...  (by your dinner guests, after they watch you shove a nasal inhaler up your nose at the dinner table.) 

Israel engages in State sanctioned assassination:  "Ezzeddin Sheikh Khalil, a member of the radical Palestinian resistance movement Hamas, was killed in a booby-trapped car explosion in the al-Zahera district in southern Damascus, a source from the Interior Ministry was quoted by the agency as saying." Is there a difference between killing individual members of a movement vs. killing the leader of a movement, (terrorist or otherwise?)  Somehow it seems wrong to me, yet, at the same time, for some strange reason, if I had a chance to snuff Ben Ladin, a nice clean shot ... the only thing that would bother me  ... is missing.  I wonder why that is?

Watched the  "Twiddleleedee and Twiddleleedum" debate" last night.  Kerry looked good:  although I did see a drooping brow, (maybe Botox poisoning).  I also noticed Bush's ears ... really do look "chimp-like".  I feel sure their respective supporters will argue their candidate won.  Some phrases stand out for me:  Kerry, "confuse the war with the warrior", (didn't he do that in the 70's?) ... and Bush, "... we will fight terrorists around the world so we don't have to fight them here at home", (if that is true, why increase the powers of Homeland security?) To me, it was readily apparent, that both men are sensitized about ensuring that our men and women in uniform return home as quickly as possible:  neither is in favor of abandoning Iraq. Kerry proposed two additional Army Divisions ... and in passing, mentioned a draft, (got news:  to activate 2 additional Divisions, we would HAVE to institute a draft because, given the current recruiting shortfalls, we can barely replace the folks leaving the services now!)  He also stated, "90% of the casualties in Iraq are ours ..." , (sorry, 99% of the casualties in Iraq, are Iraqi's) and, (when criticized about his lack of a personal relationship with the Leaders of other Nations), he said, " ... I've worked with these Leaders ... 20 years longer than this President".  Didn't know the current World Leaders were in office 20 years ago! Bush: "After 9/11 we take threats seriously before they fully materialize". What does that mean? We commit troops on a suspicion? Kerry on the other hand proses an "International Test" before using force. Like we should ask permission from the UN?  On a side note, right around Christmas, we invade a country whose name ends in an "A",  ie.  Panama, Grenada, Somalia etc.  all successful, we got in and we got out  ...  it is obvious to me, we have not trained our troops to invade countries ending in a letter other than "A" and at a time, other than Christmas. Vietnam does not end in an "A", neither does Iraq.  Point being:  a citizen of Iran, would not have to worry nearly as much, as a citizen of North Korea. And Christmas is coming.  Finally, Kerry wants to have unilateral talks with North Korea:  Bush wants to have multilateral talks with North Korea, the converse of their positions on Iraq.  Guess both candidates espouse a system that has different diplomatic policies/strategies as a function of the last letter in a countries name.  Think about it.

On February 6, 2004, in the Ramblings I wrote:
"Been monitoring the "Avian Flu" outbreaks in South East AsiaType "A" Influenza virus, (the type that infects humans), can be hosted by several species,  usually mammals like pigs, horses, seals and whales. "Influenza A viruses can be divided into subtypes on the basis of their surface proteins hemagglutinin (HA) and neuraminidase (NA). There are 15 known H subtypes. While all subtypes can be found in birds, only 3 subtypes of HA (H1, H2 and H3) and two subtypes of NA (N1 and N2) are known to have circulated widely in humans."  The varieties that are hosted primarily by wild birds are called "Avian Influenza"(H5N1).  They do not seem to harm wild birds but ARE  fatal to chickens.  Historically, human infection by "Avian Influenza" is extremely rare, (requiring contact with an infected bird), with the most notable human infection occurring in Hong Kong in 1997, resulting in the destruction of 1.5 million chickens and the hospitalization of 18 persons, with 6 of those persons dying.  The outbreak in Vietnam is particularly alarming because it may be the first reported human to human infection, (apparently a boy infected his two sisters, all three children died), of  "Avian Flu".  The World Health Organization, (WHO) and the Center for Disease Control, (CDC), both conduct extensive surveillance programs to monitor the occurrence of influenza activity worldwide,  because of a "Pandemic Flu Risk".  They report outbreaks in Cambodia, China, Hong Kong (in a single peregrine falcon), Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Laos, Pakistan, Thailand, and Vietnam, (with confirmed deaths in Vietnam, China and Cambodia).  This strain of "Avian Flu" is particularly virulent and if this strain can human to human transmit, (the evidence now suggests that it can), as a species, we could be in trouble.  Flu pandemics are a real threat:    "1918-19, "Spanish flu," [A (H1N1)], caused the highest number of known flu deaths: more than 500,000 people died in the United States, and 20 million to 50 million people may have died worldwide."  .... "1957-58, "Asian flu," [A (H2N2)], caused about 70,000 deaths in the United States. First identified in China in late February 1957, the Asian flu spread to the United States by June 1957."  ....  "1968-69, "Hong Kong flu," [A (H3N2)], caused approximately 34,000 deaths in the United States. This virus was first detected in Hong Kong in early 1968 and spread to the United States later that year. Type A (H3N2) viruses still circulate today." As a species and as individuals, we have encountered the flu bug many times:  as a result, we have primed immune systems that can fight off  current flu bugs due to these prior contacts.  On the other hand, the "Avian Flu" bug is totally different:  our immune systems are unarmed. If a person contacts H5N1 and is already infected with one of the "normal" bugs, the two could recombine, resulting in a "superbug".  The 1918 Spanish Flu  had a mortality rate of 1.1% and killed more folks in one year than 4 years of the Black Plague.  In our first recorded encounter with "Avian Flu" in 1997, the kill rate was 33%.  Think about it:  33% and there is no "flu shot".  There will be no "flu shot" until we develop new technology to produce it because this bug kills the fertilized chicken eggs that are used to produce the vaccine.   Be worried, (on the news this evening, 18 persons have now been confirmed H5N1 infected  ...  11 have died ... with this strain, the kill rate is 61%)."  [as it turns out, 42 people were infected and 30 died as a result]  This week a confirmation that Avian Flu has crossed over:  it can now be transmitted human to human. The question now is not if there will be a Pandemic:  the question now, is, when and do we, as a species, have enough time to prepare.  You can stop being worried:  be REALLY SCARED!

Sitting here editing these Ramblings, sucking down some Port and listening to the dogs bark at folks outside enjoying the Holden Fall Festival.  Have an eye on the evening news: as predicted, each side in the "Presidential Debate" claimed victory. DOH!!  Heavy fighting in Samara, (we pulled out last November and the City was quickly overrun by "insurgents"), our troops are finally going back in to clean it out, (over 100 insurgents and one American soldier, killed).  Some of the Iraqi children murdered by "insurgents" yesterday, were buried today  ...   and the second in command of Al Qaeda called for more attacks. Want to see the face of evil:  look at the tape, available on the Webpage of Aljazeera, (you know, the bastion of fair, unbiased news reporting for the Arab world).   Mount St. Helens erupted today:  all smoke and ash. Oil prices today hit $50.12/ barrel:  the highest ever, (think about that when you gas up your nice SUV).  Richard Avedon, (81), passed on today:  one of the greatest fashion photogs of all time ... and here in Holden, at Ft Timmerman, Susan and I will walk around later, munch down some "festival food", look at the booths put out by our local churches, businesses and greet our friends and neighbors. Things that happen out here in the country, a small midwest town, small town America at it's finest.  I thank God every day, that I have the privilege of being a citizen of our America, have the most wonderful, Lady, lover, partner a man can have  ...  and as I do every night while drifting off to sleep, thinking about the days events, count our Blessings ... I will continue to remember our men and women in uniform:  .... <whispering>  ... (Please, Please, Please, Lord ... let them come home safe and soon ... especially Spc. Thorpe).  Be and sleep well, knowing the best there is, is on watch so you can, (please remember them in your prayers).  If my post offends, I apologize ... that is not my intent.  As Always ....
A Warm Brotherly Hug
Karl (the dumb ole country lawyer from Holden, Missouri)

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Karl H. Timmerman M.A.J.D. 2004
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