Yes, it's that time for witches, ghosts and goblins once again. Trick or treat and things that go 'bump' in the night will be the call of the day. Houston will be experiencing lovely weather for it, and my sign that will be on the front door is ready. It says, "Knock on my door and I call the police!!!"

I don't need a bunch of little kids bothering me. I'm not only the Thanksgiving scrooge and the Christmas scrooge, I'm also the Halloween scrooge. Bah humbug.

One thing I find interesting is that Halloween is the only holiday that has never been successfully 'Christianized'. By that, I mean that some of our other holidays have a mixture of paganism in them. Back in the day, people lived for their festivals. It was the only time they were able to enjoy their lives. The rest of the time was spent simply trying to survive. When the early Christian church arrived, they realized that no one would listen to them if they preached against their godless festivals. So, a compromise was made.

For example, the Christmas tree is pagan in its origin. The druids of northern Europe and the UK would bring a tree down from the hills during the winter solstice and prop it up in the village center. All the villagers would decorate it and worship the tree. When the church came along, they adopted the Christmas tree as a sign of worshipping Christ and celebrating his birth. We know, or have a very good idea, that Christ was not born in December. When the Bible says the shepherds were in the fields, watching over their flock by night, this was not done in the dead of winter. Rather, it was during the spring. However, the church moved the celebration of his birth to coincide with the festival and the Christmas tree/Pagan worship festivals were combined.

Then you have Easter. In the middle east, particularly those who worshipped the old Babylonian gods, their main god died every year and was reborn, hatching from a beautifully adorned egg. A great festival was molded around this rebirth and people exchanged decorated eggs in celebration of their god being reborn. The church said...hmmmmm...and chose to continue the use of decorated eggs as a way of continuing the festival, but changing it to be a celebration of Christ's resurrection.

However, Halloween has not been so changed. It is still about scary things and goblins and ghosts and the undead and things wicked. For some reason, this holiday has withstood the influence of the church and has more or less kept its historical past. I fear it is dying out, though, because many people are, rightfully, fearful of sending their children out to stranger's homes. There is so much evil in the world and so many sick in the mind people that even I wouldn't want to knock on a stranger's door in these times. So much the pity. When I was growing up, there wasn't near the danger as you see today. Many things could be attributed to it, but I won't go into that. I'll just say for all to have fun, be careful, and remember there's no such thing as ghosts. There are such things as monsters...human monsters...so keep an eye out.

Millions to spare

Coastal Villages Region Fund is having a fine year, with revenue from its Bering Sea fishing operations projected to reach almost $100 million.

That's better than expected, so the Anchorage-based company plans to break off a $2 million bonus for its 20 member villages in Western Alaska.

The money will go to village governing bodies, mainly tribal councils.

Each village can use its share of the $2 million for purposes such as supplying the needy with heating oil, providing services to elders, paying for public safety, or repairing and marking trails, Coastal says.

You might already know that Coastal is the biggest of Alaska's six Community Development Quota companies in terms of revenue.

But nevermind that!

Coastal now reckons it is "the largest Alaskan-owned seafood company in history."

The Keeper's Dare is Doing Well

My book, The Keeper's Dare, is doing better and better. I have to thank KJCE Austin Radio for the boost. My four month long radio campaign to promote the book has increased sales. I'm still in the red with the cost, but the campaign was mainly to get the word out, and that it has done.

My horror story, Evil Most Holy, has seen an increase in sales in the UK. I guess since the story is based in southern England, that might have something to do with it.

The Grove of Akkadia and The Last Medal are not being picked up right now. The Last Medal has the edge on 'Grove', with only one copy of it selling.

I don't guess July, 2013 will ever get here. That's when my Western, Hell's Gunman, comes out. We will soon begin the editing process and I can't wait.

On the 'writing' board are two books I'm working on simultaneously. I'm 64,000 words into the Murder Mystery and 36,000 words into the Science Fiction story. I'm more excited about the sci-fi as it is really taking shape. I was reading some excerpts to my daughter the other day and she told me to stop and not tell her anymore. She said she wanted to read the whole thing and didn't want me to ruin it. That's a good sign, as she is one of my harshest critics.

Check out my new video on YouTube. Type Robert Coward: Each Book a New Genre in the search engine and hit enter. It's only 48 seconds, and I'd appreciate it if you gave it some hits.

You can also check me out on Twitter @RobertCowardAuthor and on my website, www.robertcoward.com.

Well, that's it for now. Have a great week.

New podcast up with Robert Crumb!

At long last! The final and longest and weirdest podcast that John did with Crumb in France is now up at iTunes..search John's Old Time Radio Show or check out our website link below..this one features another special guest: ME ME ME ME!!! It is an hour and a half long and you will hear great music and ridiculous conversations between us all as we sit in Robert's room and discuss sex and all kinds of shtuff! Yeah! Shtuff!

Next one will feature Dom Flemons of the Carolina Chocolate Drops! A two parter!

Here is the link to the latest with Robert..his wife Aline will be at the Strand on November 16th and John will be interviewing her about Drawn Together her and Robert's latest release!

Old Time Radio Show

HUE 2012- Ice Breaking Trip

Our HUE 2012 created International Program history this fall
by taking the first student trip to Iceland in University history.

It was an amazing 10 journey that took us around the coast of Iceland,

through endless waterfalls and rivers,

on horseback through gorgeously remote valleys,

to quiet cabins hidden in the snowy mountains, 

floating around hot springs and blue lagoons,

sailing into icy blue glacial lagoons,

and up close & person with the capital city, Reykjavic. 

The over all consensus from the trip?


Which, in case you were wondering, is Icelandic for "awesome."

If I Were Running For President in 2016

I'm thinking about announcing my candidacy for President of the United States concerning the 2016 elections. If I do, I will be running as an independent. Since our presidential campaigns last about 3.9 years...almost right after the inauguration...I'll have to announce sometime in March, 2013. I would like to know who would be willing to donate to my effort early on, to see what kind of chance I could have to put up blistering TV, Radio, and Newspaper attack ads on whoever wins this November. So, feel free to let me know if you're on board.

Now, I know that first you will have to be informed about my platform. You, the voter, should have every right to know where I stand on the issues. Unlike all other potential candidates before me, I will offer specifics about my position on several, important questions that need answers as our nation continues its march as the greatest country that has ever existed on the planet....bar none. So, here goes with my top 25 platform planks.

First, the economy. I support it.
Second, the military. I support our troops.
Third, jobs. Yes.
Fourth, taxes. I'll get back to you.
Fifth, the poor. We need the poor so we can have a scale with which to compare the rich.
Sixth, crime. It's bad.
Seventh, infrastructure. I need to study that. I don't know what it means.
Eighth, foreign policy. All foreigners should be policed.
Ninth, trade. I believe, as our forefathers, that we should continue our trade with the Indians.
Tenth, women's rights. Since they already believe they are right...all the time...I have no stance.
Eleventh, equal pay. Are you kidding?
Twelfth, energy. I fully support 5-Hour Energy and will subsidize it with your tax dollars.
Thirteenth, health care. I will import more doctors from India so each of you will have your own personal physician living with you 24 hours a day.
Fourteenth, immigration. All fences in existence on our borders will be electrified with 1 million volts. Further, a fence will be built around California to keep them in. Those that have already escaped we will round up and deport back to California.
Fifteenth, gun control. Are you serious?
Sixteenth, legalization of marijuana. Like...WOW man. Of course.
Seventeenth, prostitution. A time honored profession that needs to be taxed.
Eighteenth, labor laws. I'm against laws that force people into labor. We need less labored people!
Nineteenth, teachers. All teachers must become conservative or die.
Twentieth, entitlements. All Hollywood movies must have Government approved movie titles.
Twenty-first, education. I'm all for it.
Twenty-second, environment. I have a plan for Global cooling and for the lifetime incarceration of Al Gore.
Twenty-third, the Supreme Court. I will appoint only good looking women, regardless of political ideology, and make them wear mini-robes. Red ones. With slits up to their hip. And garters...can't forget the garters...WITH fishnet stockings and spike heels. As you can tell, I put a lot of thought into this one.
Twenty-fourth, agriculture. DDT! DDT! DDT!
Twenty-fifth, terrorism. It terrifies me and I will do all I can to not hide under the desk in the Oval Office while terrorism still exists.

So, there you have it. My top 25 platform planks to initiate my run for the White House. I would appreciate your vote and...most importantly...your tax deductible campaign donations.

Things I Used To Enjoy

I used to enjoy drive-in movies. You don't see them like in the olden days. I hear there are a few still out there, but none around where I live...or at least I haven't seen any. They sure beat the Cineplex's of today. You could sit in the privacy of your own car and light the little swirly mosquito repellant on your dash and choke on the smoke while trying to kiss your girl without someone tapping you on the shoulder and telling you to get a room.

I used to enjoy Saturday morning cartoons. Foghorn Leghorn, Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, Elmer Fudd, Roadrunner, and Johnny Quest. Funny how the old 'violent' cartoons didn't turn me into a psychopathic killer.

I used to enjoy going to Houston Oiler football games. My dad had season tickets when they were created and we watched them at Jeppeson Stadium, Rice Stadium and then the Astrodome. Eventually, the tickets got too pricey and dad couldn't afford them anymore.

I used to enjoy hiking, camping and hunting on my uncles' 4000 acre lease in the Big Thicket. Many great memories were created there. It's a wonder I was never snakebitten or ravaged by poison ivy or killed by a wild boar. One night I was camping out by myself and put my pack where I could rest my head up against an old, dead tree. Around midnight, a screech owl perched on it and let out its hideous sound right above me. I never knew I could run so fast. It took me over half an hour to find my campsite again. I couldn't go back to sleep once I did.

I used to enjoy being involved in tournament chess. I was a member of the United States Chess Federation for twelve years and played in many tournaments. The best I ever did was place second at the Fifth Houston Classic Tournament. I think it was in '81. I finally got burned out on competitive play and now rarely set up a board.

I used to enjoy playing football in High School. I wasn't very good at it, but I loved suiting up on Friday nights and getting out on the field. I didn't enjoy practice, but I enjoyed playing the game.

I used to enjoy going to Menard Creek on the hottest of summer days and splashing in its ice cold water. There were no cares or real responsibilities back in those days.

I used to enjoy sitting out on my parents' front porch swing. You could be out there at night and hear the frogs and the crickets and the occasional hoot owl. It was a peaceful time.

I used to enjoy the friendships I had with my college friends. They all enriched me in ways they will never know. Now, all grown up with families and lives of their own, we live hundreds of miles apart; only rarely touching base.

I used to enjoy marijuana. Boy...did I EVER enjoy marijuana. Whether rolled up, bonged, shotgunned, sneaky toked, nose hit, or in brownies...I enjoyed it to the extreme. Drug testing at the work place stopped all that. When I retire, I think the first thing I'm going to do is build a greenhouse. You know...for vegetables and flowers.

I used to enjoy riding motorcycles. My first was a Suzuki 500 two stroke. Then I had a Suzuki 800 that was supercharged and had a drive shaft. It was awesome. Honda, Kawasaki, and Yamaha rounded out my experience with them. My old bones are too brittle for those things now. I would rather be surrounded by armor these days.

I used to enjoy riding in the back of pick-ups, helping pull corn, taking my horse Peanut out for some exercise, driving my first car, rabbit hunting in the old oil field, playing pool at the Oiler Cafe', hearing Smokey Robinson's 'Tears of a Clown' on the juke box, and dating my way through the high school cheerleaders.

I used to enjoy a lot of things.

Some I have mentioned, others I never will.

What's the deal with Rep. Thomas?

Earlier this month we reported that a Southeast Alaska commercial fishing group was endorsing state Rep. Bill Thomas for another term, despite his "conflict of interest" in trying to influence state salmon fishery managers.

The suggestion of a conflict is rooted in two facts: Thomas himself is a commercial fisherman, and he holds considerable sway over the Department of Fish and Game budget as co-chair of the House Finance Committee.

The Haines Republican appears to be in quite a battle for re-election this year.

Since that initial report, Deckboss has acquired a raft of public records, including email and other documents, from Fish and Game that shed light on Thomas and his dealings with the department.

The records center on the state's management of the 2011 salmon fisheries in northern Southeast, the legislator's home region, and the rivalry between two gear groups — gillnetters and seiners.

Thomas, a gillnetter, appears to push managers for actions that would benefit the gillnetters.

As an example of the records we obtained, here is an internal memo known as a notification of legislative contact in which a Fish and Game supervisory biologist details a call from Thomas.

Thomas, according to the memo, complained that gillnetters had been restricted but not seiners.

He said he would take his concerns to the Fish and Game commissioner and the state Board of Fisheries.

He asserted he was the only commercial fisherman in the Legislature.

And he noted that he "had done a lot for ADF&G's budgets."

More instances of Thomas contacting department staff can be found in this string of documents. Note that some sections have been redacted.

The Petersburg Vessel Owners Association endorsed Thomas, but told him his in-season interactions with Fish and Game managers constituted a "conflict of interest."

"Salmon management and allocation issues should be addressed in the appropriate forums and through the proper channels, allowing due process to take its course," the group said.

Deckboss has not contacted Thomas regarding this issue. But certainly he is welcome to respond.

Smorgasbord Friday

Ever since I grew up and learned to appreciate the physical wiles of women, I've always said there ain't nothin' sexier than a woman with a gun. I had no idea that anyone would take it to another level. Hernando County, Florida deputies were confronted by a woman with a gun...and she was naked. Buck naked. For some reason they believed she was 'irrational'. In fact, the sheriff said it was obvious that just by being naked, in public, meant she was not in her right mind and was acting irrational. So, as any reasonable officer would do...they shot her. She did not survive.

From the time I was 12 years old, I've been taught how to handle a gun and that when you are in the woods you don't shoot at anything unless you're absolutely certain you know what it is. Obviously, this lesson was never taught to a particular male individual in Freedom, Pennsylvania.  Seems there was a 9 year old girl wearing a black costume and a black hat with a white tassel. A male relative, who the police said had not been drinking, shot her. He told authorities he thought she was a skunk. Now, I've seen skunks before, but I've never seen one as big as a nine year old girl. Maybe they grow 'em pretty big in Freedom, Pennsylvania than they do in Texas. The girl's condition was unavailable.

On the other end of the spectrum, a 12 year old girl in Oklahoma was home alone when a man started breaking into the house. As her mother had taught her, she grabbed the pistol, ran upstairs, hid in the closet and called 911 on her cell phone. The 6th grader told the emergency operator what was going on and that she was armed. The 12 year old was armed with a .40 caliber Glock, semi-auto. She told the dispatcher she had it, and to that person's credit, she told the little girl to hang on to it. The man came upstairs, heard the girl talking on the phone, and started to open the door. The girl, named Kendra, fired one round through the door, striking the subject in the shoulder. A funny thing happened right after that. He ran like a scalded dog on meth. 32 year old Stacey Jones was able to run a few blocks before loss of blood forced him to take a breather. The cops arrested him. Kendra was not traumatized that she had shot a bad guy. Nor should she be. She said, "I think it's going to change me a whole lot, knowing that I can hold my head up high and nothing can hurt me anymore." I should say not. As long as you're packin' a .40 caliber Glock, I'd say you're pretty safe.

Some folks in Ketchikan, Alaska committed the unpardonable sin when living in bear country. They left some exposed garbage in the vestibule of their home. A large, black bear pushed the door open and while rummaging around it wedged a trash can against the door, locking itself in. Of course, when the bear decided to leave, it got quite riled up that it couldn't and began to take it's displeasure out on the homeowner's vestibule. An Alaska wildlife trooper took a ten foot board and pushed the door open enough for the bear to get out. The bruiser took off into the woods, leaving the homeowner with over a thousand dollars worth of damage to his home.

Leave it up to North Korea to find a new way to execute somebody. One of their army ministers was accused of drinking and carousing during the official mourning period following the demise of Kim Jong-il's death. Kim Jong-un, the new leader, quickly decided the man's fate. He gave orders that he was to be put to death and further...there was nothing to be left of the poor man, even down to the hair. Those who are in charge of such matters had to think fast. So, they executed him by use of a mortar round. Yep, that should do it.

Ladies, if you happen to find yourself in Vienna, Austria and you wish to dine in a cafe', please ask them if there is a two way mirror installed in the ladies' room. Seems an artist has installed one so men can watch you 'wash up'. Only the view of the women's lavatory's can be seen, but never fear. In a month the artist will turn it around so the ladies can look at the men's faces while they stand at the urinal. I swear, you can't make this stuff up.

Finally, I saved the worst for last. Piedmont High School in Piedmont, California (where else?), discovered that their athlete students had taken Fantasy Football, Fantasy Baseball and Fantasy Hockey to a whole new level. Seems they created the Fantasy Slut League. Male students would 'draft' female students (most without their knowledge) and earned points for successfully completing certain sexual encounters with them. This is where it's gotten to, people. The typical liberal response?
Asst. Superintendent Randall Booker said, "It always comes back to how do we educate students and to have further conversations with the community."

And that's it for this edition of Smorgasbord Friday. Have a great weekend.



Expect Carlson checks soon

The marathon Carlson class-action case is finally at the finish line.

An Alaska judge has signed an order directing the disbursement of refunds to nonresident commercial fishermen the state overcharged for permits and licenses.

The refund administrator, A.B. Data of Milwaukee, Wis., is expected to start sending out checks soon, perhaps within a week.

Find the payout list and other information at carlsonrefund.com.

Where will wild fish stand in 2030?

Frank Asche, a prominent fisheries economist from Norway, will give a presentation tomorrow in Anchorage on global seafood markets and the rising tide of aquaculture. Click here for details.

I'm Going to Win the Lottery

That's right. Saturday night. All the numbers. Squillions of dollars. The reason I'm going to win is because it's due me. I have a right to win. I've worked all my life and it's time for my ship to come in. I'm tired of working.  I want to write. Just write. Write write write write write. On my boat. A big boat. With a captain and a butler. All the amenities. AND a personal secretary. She must be young, curvaceous, and unable to scream loud, run fast, or fight back. I'm too old for all that.

I think I'll dock somewhere in Oregon. Sail up to Alaska and back down the Canadian coast, flying a an old Soviet Union flag...just to make 'em wonder. Then, I'll go on down the Washington coast, the Orgegon coast (again), the California coast (flying a flag with a picture of Pelosi, a circle around her head with a slash through it...like Ghostbusters) and then on down the Baja peninsula to get my 100 pounds of marijuana. Not to sell...it would be for personal use.

After that, I think I'll dock in the Catalinas. Take a break, make some new friends that are filthy rich like me (so they will have no need to ask me for money), drink a few mai-tais and watch the sun set about 365 times before I leave.

Pulling up anchor, I'll sail down to the Panama Canal and come out on the other side. Have to make a stop in Brazil and see what all the fuss is about concerning Brazilian women. Back up to Venezuela to shoot the bird at Chavez, then on to the Caymans. I'll swing by the western tip of Cuba and shoot the bird at Castro, if he's still alive, and into the Gulf of Mexico. I'll pass by the coast of Texas and pretend I never came from there. I'll have my nose stuck in the air and take on a stupid sounding English accent and say, "How boorish those Americans are!". Skirting Lousiana, Mississippi and Alabama, I'll hug the coast of Florida and wave at my good friends there...then forget I ever knew them, too. Curving around Florida's tip, I'll stop at the Keys and have a few more mai-tais (I love those little umbrellas) and make some new rich friends. Then, it's off to the Bahamas at Staniel Cay where I will drop anchor and enjoy the beauty of the Caribbean for a while.

Then I...I...what? I'm dreaming? Oh well. Can't a man dream every now and then?

No go again

Another season, another herring shutdown in Prince William Sound. Here's the bleak announcement from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.

Grim update on man overboard

The U.S. Coast Guard has suspended the search for a man reported overboard today near Skagway in Southeast Alaska.

The Coast Guard identified the boat involved as the Darlin' Michele, out of Haines.

State records show the 48-foot vessel belongs to Theodore L. Lynch, of Haines.

Haines radio station KHNS reported the vessel captain and a deckhand were commercial shrimping in an inlet between Haines and Skagway when the 62-year-old skipper, believed to be Lynch, went overboard. Listen to the radio report here.

"It is always a very hard decision to make when you have to suspend a search for a man overboard," said Nick Meyers, a watchstander at the Coast Guard Sector Juneau command center. "Our hearts go out to the family, friends and the crew of the fishing vessel."

Man overboard reported near Skagway

The U.S. Coast Guard reports a search is under way for a man reported overboard from a fishing vessel near Skagway.

A press release does not name the lost man, nor the boat involved.

The Coast Guard says it received a call from Skagway police this afternoon saying the man had fallen overboard.

Efforts to pull him back aboard with a life ring failed, the Coast Guard says.

Two helicopters, a C-130 airplane, three good Samaritan vessels and Skagway emergency responders are involved in the search.

Mad Hatters Tea Party in Tompkins Square Park!

The annual(third?) Mad Hatters Tea Party was in Tompkins Square Park over the weekend..I only had my iPhone with me so the pics I took are craptacular but at least I got some! It was nice out so it was packed and they had the marching band and the table set up with tea and cookies and cakes made out of yarn this time..So here is a glimpse of the happening..as lame as it is with my phone videos and all!

Over the next week I plan to finish my bands new album..somehow drop 10lbs..get wasted for Halloween weekend and retake some pics for said album..DID I MENTION I AM DRINKING AGAIN AND HUNGOVER AS FUCK?!

The REAL Face of Liberalism

Birds of a feather flock together. I first heard that from my grandmother. And I have found it to be true in the vast majority of cases. If you want to see the true face of liberalism and what it's really about, you need look no further than the photo below.

This is one of the most offensive characters on TV today. Chris Matthews is vile, intemperate, haughty, megolomaniacal, and possibly insane. Here is a direct quote from him after last night's debate:

“I think they hate Obama. They want him out of the White House more than they want to destroy Al Qaeda. Their No. 1 enemy in the world right now, on the right, is their hatred, hatred for Obama. And we can go into that about the white working class in the South and looking at these numbers we're getting the last couple days about racial hatred in many cases … this isn't about being a better president, they want to get rid of this president,’ he said.”

Did you read that? Did you get that? If you're a white working class individual in the South...you hate black people. How strange. I haven't met any conservative yet that said they would support only white folk down here. In fact, we are in perfect agreement that we would vote for Colin Powell, Condi Rice, Herman Cain, Allen West et al, before we would vote for a tax and spend white Democrat. In fact, I was an ardent Herman Cain supporter before the media destroyed him and he dropped out of the race. I liked his style, the fact he wasn't a Washington insider (and that's what killed him), a successful businessman, and his 9-9-9 plan sounded pretty darned good to me.

The cold, hard fact is that Matthews is anti-American, anti-family, anti-decency, anti-wholesome, anti anti anti anything that is above the sewer where he resides. To claim an entire geographical area of our country is so racist we all would hate someone strictly on race is nothing less than a delusion born from a sick mind.

And, this is where liberals go for their news. These are the types of people they listen to. They deride other news channels who, by the way, never say these kinds of things, and dub them as Satan's spawn. Take a look at the blurry face in the photo...which I did on purpose. He's a person undone. I don't hate Obama, and I don't know anybody that 'hates' him. Hate is to want him dead. What a ludicrous thing to say. But, sadly, I have come to realize that most of what comes out of a liberal's pie hole meets that definition...ludicrous. Especially when it comes to the mainstream media. Birds of a feather flock together. If they didn't, then where is the outcry from liberals that he retract such a statement that all white, working class people in the South are racist and hate the president. It's too absurd to allow it to stand. Even by liberal standards. We'll see what happens. And I bet it's nothing.

The Final Debate...AT LAST

First, I'd like to go on record that Bob Schieffer did a good job as moderator. At least...he was better than the last three, by far. I don't like Schieffer. I don't like his liberalistic ideals and I don't like his politics and I don't like what he stands for. But he put on his objectivity hat last night and verbally showed no preference for either candidate. I think a few of his questions were lightweight, but overall I give him a B+.

A lot of people are wondering why Romney came out with powder puff gloves on and had what some have called a 'hugfest' with the president. I didn't see it that way, but that's just me. A lot of reasons have been thrown out in the ring. But, there is one reason I don't think anyone wants to talk about. It's his Mormonism. Now, I've never been a Mormon. Never went to a Mormon church. I've talked to Mormons and done battle with young Mormon missionaries who have regrettably (for them) knocked on my door. I have had the good fortune of being married to a woman who's grandparents on her father's side were devout Mormons. She lived with them for almost two years in the hill country of Texas and was made to attend Mormon services and events. She saw firsthand what the Mormon psyche entails and has related her knowledge about them to me. I have also read the Book of Mormon and studied its contents. When I was in the ministry, I felt it my duty to read other 'holy' books besides the Bible to understand what these other beliefs were about. I have read the Quran, the New World Edition of the Jehovah's Witness, the Baghavad Gita, among others. I didn't just read them, I studied them so I could put up more than just a good defense of my faith.

Mitt Romney is a devout Mormon. He eats, sleeps and breathes his faith. In many ways, that is a good thing. In others, not so much. But in the political arena I think it has been a detriment to him. Last night was a good example. His campaign manager revealed, after the debate, that the strategy was all Romney's. He did not want to get into another brawl with Obama and wished to stick to the talking points. In one way, this made the debate turn out to be a yawner. In another, it placed him above the fray. On two occasions he told Obama that attacking him personally wasn't a policy agenda. I agree with some of the talking heads that Romney was trying not to look like George W, and trying not to look like a warhawk. In so doing, he allowed Obama to take the advantage and charge into his attacks. Romney held his own, getting in a couple of good zingers, but on the whole remained passive and supported the president's actions in many areas. This was his Mormonism coming out. In my humble opinion. Don't get me wrong, Mormons will fight when it becomes necessary. But Romney is seeing the same polls we are, and he didn't think he needed a decisive win last night to win this election. Only time will tell if he was correct.

Obama isn't a devout anything, other than believing in himself. He looked angry last night, and so he should. He's losing. I couldn't help but smile as he was talking about his leadership. I had to shake my head at the millions who throng around him like he's some kind of demi-god, nodding their heads in agreement as to his great leadership. How easily and quickly they forget his 57 States remark. How easily they forget him bowing before foreign kings and dignitaries. How quickly they forget him speaking in France in 2009 saying how America, in the past, had been arrogant, dictatorial to its allies and derisive. Romney had the best line where that was concerned, telling Obama that America doesn't dictate, it rescues countries from dictators. With all of Obama's bluster last night, and his hard speech and iron look, he failed as a debater, he failed in his attempt to portray himself as a leader, and he failed to look presidential. He looked like a man who knew he was in the fight of his life and that he might not have the flexibility to give Putin what he wants come January.

Neither man won last night. Only one of them had to. As the experts say, foreign policy isn't what wins or loses elections unless someone doesn't know that Turkey is a country and not a Thanksgiving bird to be served with dressing stuffed up its butt. Romney didn't hurt his campaign, and Obama didn't help his. Fortunately, we don't have to suffer through these anymore.

Here is where I hope the American voter places their focus. Our country is broke. B-R-O-K-E. The debt we have looking at us right now reminds me of the John Wayne movie, Big Jake. Wayne has a double barreled shotgun trained at Richard Boone. He tells Boone..."Anything goes wrong, anything at all... your fault, my fault, nobody's fault... it won't matter - I'm gonna blow your head off." The debt we have facing us has the potential of blowing our economic head off, regardless of who's fault it is.

I want a president who will take office and take responsibility on the first day. Even last night, Obama is still whining about Bush. Obama wasn't forced to be president. He exhaustively ran to be placed in the White House. He WANTED it. But he has yet to take responsibility for anything in the last four years, blaming all his woes on past presidents and past policies. He has to. His record is so abysmal he can't realistically run a campaign on it.  That's not leadership. America deserves better. He needs to go.

The looming fiscal cliff, or Wayne's double barreled shotgun, doesn't care who's fault it is. If our government doesn't get a handle on spending, it's going to blow our collective head off. Instead of assigning who is at fault, and pointing fingers, and whining about Congress, and whining about Bush, and whining about anything else he can think of to whine about...let's put somebody in there who will try to straighten this mess out...at least 'try'.

I hope the majority of the American voters, in the right places, will see it the way I do.

Take a picture, win an iPad

The Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute is offering Apple iPads and other prizes in a "fishing families photo contest." Details here.

There Should be a Law....

Against putting a presidential debate on at the same time as Monday Night Football.

For making it a capital crime if friends discuss politics.

Against the existence of anyone named Kardashian.

For allowing dads to have one minute alone with their child's molester.

Against women having the right to refuse a first date request.

For the right to tell your boss what you think of him once a year without getting fired.

Against alarm clocks.

For 11 months paid vacation, 2 weeks sick leave, and 2 weeks of working.

Against everyone who disagrees with me.

For the parents to kill their children before they become teenagers and ruin everything for everybody.

Against getting old.

For one 'Go To Work Naked' day every year. Just to gross people out.

Against present and any possibility of future 'reality' shows.

For Jeff Probst to retire...NOW.

Against celebrities opening their pie holes unless it's reading from a script for our entertainment.

For everyone to receive a lifetime supply of Snicker's bars. (or the chocolate of your choice)

Against  Bill O'Reilly, Sean Hannity, Chris Matthews, Rachael Maddow and all other opinion hacks wiht their own political agenda to vomit at us.

And finally,

For the NFL to be on year round with a 48 week season and a four week playoff tourney w/Super Bowl.

Can science solve our Chinook problem?

A state symposium opens Monday in Anchorage on "Understanding Abundance and Productivity Trends of Chinook Salmon in Alaska."

The symposium comes in response to the recent poor Chinook returns to some Alaska rivers.

The two-day event at the downtown Egan Center will be divided into four sessions, each featuring presentations and panel discussions with state and federal scientists. Here's the agenda.

The scientists will discuss such topics as ocean survival of Chinook, genetic stock identification, salmon bycatch in commercial fisheries, and the potential role of hatcheries to supplement Chinook stocks.

People can offer questions or comments at the end of each session. Wisely, state officials plan to use a moderator to help control speechmakers.

In preparation for the symposium, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game prepared this analysis identifying Chinook "knowledge gaps." The 27-page document focuses on 12 "indicator stocks" around the state, in drainages such as the Stikine, Copper, Kenai, Karluk, Nushagak, Kuskokwim and Yukon.

Ultimately, the department aims to develop a research plan to better understand the causes for Chinook declines.

Lots more information here on the symposium, including how to attend in person or listen by phone or online.

Don't You Just WISH?

One of my Facebook friends put on his page yesterday the following:

"Wish there was no smoking in Katy Restaurants!"

Katy, Texas is where he and I live, and there are many restaurants in this town that allow smoking. They have sections for the patrons who participate in that activity and sections for those who don't. To read the comment, one would think that EVERY restaurant in Katy allows smoking. Nothing could be further from the truth. There are many that don't. Far more than those that do.

The comment goes a lot deeper than one man's opinion about what he would personally like to see. Last time I checked, tobacco use is a legal activity. It is also legal for people who OWN and RUN restaurants to CHOOSE what kind of LEGAL activity can occur in THEIR establishments. It is equally true that if one does not like what kind of activity goes on in a certain establishment, he or she can CHOOSE not to go in and patronize the place.

But NOOOOO. A person that feels the way he does places his wants and desires above all others. Why should he have to go somewhere else and eat simply because those peasant tobacco smoking lepers are in there stinking up the place? Soon, an anti-tobacco crusader like him will rise up with a sword of civil duty in one hand and a Bible in the other and charge into the fray of the Katy Town Hall and demand that all must conform to his likes, dislikes, beliefs and non-beliefs. After all, smokers are the dregs of society and if they want to smoke, they can bloody well do it outside after they've finished eating.

In England, it is against the law to smoke in any building. It is a proven fact that when the government outlawed smoking in pubs, business fall off was one of the immediate impacts. Pubs, which are more than just bars, are closing down across Great Britain at an alarming rate. So, while all the do-gooders and civil rights preventers can sleep well knowing they've done their duty, people who relied on these businesses for their livelihood are left holding the bag.

Who are these people who believe they have a right to tell a business owner what they can or cannot allow in their place of business if it's a legal activity? Now, I realize this is just a comment. I doubt this person is going to raise the battle flag. But it is a comment with poison in it that can one day affect him as much as it does anyone else.

Which one of you can rightfully say that you saw Bloomberg's law against the Big Gulp coming? Which one of you can rightfully say that you saw Bloomberg's law against new mother's using baby formula coming? There is a litany of laws and civic rules across our country that restrict or outright ban legitimate and lawful activities just because some liberal or some do-gooder has decided that it personally doesn't fit their lifestyle. What this does is erode the foundation of all our civil liberties and makes local, state and national governments think they can impose even more sanctions upon us to make us less fat, less sick, less energy consuming, less vocal, less free.

Let me tell you something. Your liberty ends where mine begins, and vice versa. You know what I do when I go into a place and I don't like what's going on there? I leave. And, I don't go back. I have no problem with the owner, the patrons or the activity (if it's legal). If that's what they want to do in that place, then that's THEIR business. My liberty ends where theirs begins. What I do is then find a place that adheres to my personal taste and is full of people that are of a like mind. But to say that you wish that ALL places of business adhere to what YOU want, is a selfish, self absorbed, impudent, holier than thou statement of proportions that may well one day affect us all in other areas of freedom and liberty losses.

So, if you don't like restaurants in Katy that allow smoking, hit 'em where it hurts. In the pocket book. Don't go there. And when you don't go there, don't whine about what's being allowed like you're in grade school and didn't get your lollipop. Grow up.

Gimme Gimme shuts its doors for good tomorrow.

Been super crazy busy and also crazy as well as busy along with being busy with craziness and crazy because I am busy and etc  etc and so on and so forth!

Lots of blogs coming soon..lots of stuff going on this week and last..now that my self imposed exile from gum surgery is over..harrah and hurray!

East River String Band is playing at Gaslight-116 Mcdougal this monday at 11pm..lots of music history in that space..

But this post is for the official and forever and ever no going back closing of the record store I work at Gimme Gimme at 325 east 5th st...between 1st and 2nd ave..18 years in that spot and we close tomorrow for good. Store will reopen but in L.A...probably by next month.

Thanks to Croman Realty and their insane rent hike..another east village staple will be gone.

So come by tomorrow and you can buy stuff and also say bye for good..

Processor shares end, rockfish prices soar

Fishermen are getting dramatically higher prices for Gulf of Alaska rockfish.

In 2011, one major processor, Trident, paid 12 cents per pound for northern rockfish delivered to its Kodiak plant, and 10 cents per pound for pelagic shelf rockfish and Pacific Ocean perch.

This year, Trident is paying 27 cents for all three species of rockfish.

And what accounts for this huge rise in prices?

It isn't higher demand for rockfish. The reason is that the forced linkage between vessels and specific processors went away this year.

Now vessels are free to deliver their catches to any processor in Kodiak. As a result, processors this year are bidding up the price.

Deckboss takes his information from this declaration by Trident's chief legal officer, Joe Plesha.

The declaration was filed in the federal lawsuit Trident and three other processors — North Pacific, Ocean Beauty and Westward — are pressing against federal fishery regulators to try to reinstate the old system of tying boats to particular plants.

The processors say that without these linkages, ensuring a steady share of rockfish to each plant, the companies inevitably will bid against each other to such a degree that all of the value of the fish will go to the fishermen.

Sci-Fi? Murder Mystery? Decisions, Decisions.....

Just a short writer's update today.

I was full blown into my murder mystery when disaster struck. A humongous case of writer's block slammed into my keyboard, bounced off and hit the monitor, ricocheted and struck me square between the eyes. It wasn't a sight for the squeamish, let me tell you. It was hard to believe since I was 67,000 words into it and my fingers were moving like Data's on Next Generation.

Then, it happened. It was sudden and total. I was staring at the monitor like a calf looking at a new gate. What was I to do? To whom was I to turn? The decision to set it aside was like putting my kid in an orphanage, but I had to move on.

In my non-writing time, I had been putting together a premise for a science fiction story. The synopsis was complete and the characters formed, even down to age, race, personality, and bad guys/good guys with a couple of plot twists. It was waiting in the wings for when I typed 'THE END' on the murder mystery novel.

So, I did the only thing I could. I blew the dust off of it and started writing. I finished chapter two last night and it's going well. I think. I read a few excerpts to my daughter and she told me to not read any more of it to her. She liked it so much she didn't want me to spoil the story for her. That made me feel good about the direction I was heading. The little snot hates everything I write.

I was doing study on theoretical concepts of sub-space communications. When you're talking about interstellar travel, there can't be this hours' long delay between messages. To my surprise, there are a lot of theories out there and I chose the one that sounded best for my story line. I wrote the guy who posed it and asked if I could use it in my novel. He wrote back...surprisingly...and told me to feel free. The funny thing he said was that many other scientists had refuted the theory and told him flat out it would never work. Yeah, well...they told Columbus he was going to fall off the edge of a flat earth, too. Anyway, that's why they call it science fiction. I liked the sound of the theory so much, I kept it in there.

There were other problems I faced. For example, propulsion. I didn't want it to be the stock 'warp engine' like in Star Trek. I decided on gravito-electromagnetic power. For this to work, the ship has to be shaped kind of like a big turd...tapered on both ends. It had to be light in weight, so the hull is made out of reinforced, thick plastic. Another reason I chose gravito-electromagnetic power is that, theoretically, the magnetic shield would also act as its own inertial dampener. In other words, when a craft that large suddenly accelerates, the inertia of its mass will cause it to disintegrate. With the type of propulsion I selected, it produces its own dampening field, allowing the craft to suddenly accelerate with no effect on the structural integrity. During my studies, I also discovered how difficult it would be to leave our solar system in a large craft. Voyager and Viking are very small, but a large craft would have to be extremely careful. First, you have the asteroid belt. Then you have the Kuiper Belt, then you have the Oort Cloud to get through before reaching open space. Theoretically, once there, the danger of accelerating to light speed is in that area there are approximately two atoms per square centimeter. If a ship were to reach the speed of light, it would be like condensing the atoms. The ship would, in effect, turn into a particle accelerator, only in reverse. Eventually, the atoms would come through the hull...no matter what it was made of...becoming radiated upon entry, and killing the crew in seconds. This is why an atomic particle deflector is absolutely necessary. This would push the atoms out of the way as the vessel glides through space. I studied oxygen supply for deep space travel, food supply, electrical energy supply, etc. It's all very complicated, but quite interesting. Even though its a fictional story, I want it to be plausible and believable at the same time.

Alas, the murder mystery is gathering dust now. I'll return to it later. I suppose my plan is to finish both at the same time. More news on progress as it develops.

UFA makes its choice

The unofficial word is Julianne Curry was selected today as United Fishermen of Alaska's new executive director.

Smorgasbord Friday

It was really a slow week for Smorgasbord Friday. The nuts in our country must be too busy preparing for Halloween. Anyway, here's what I got....

You might want to think twice about buying any Bumble Bee tuna products for a few weeks, if ever again. Espcially if they come from Santa Fe Springs, California. Seems a 62 year old employee fell into a 'steamer machine' which is a cooking device for the tuna. Nobody found him for...a while...and he was cooked to death. Yuck, yuck, double yuck.

Most of the time, you hear about big time musicians dying from drug overdoses, plane crashes, alcoholism and suicide. But, rarely do you hear about one being killed in a no-holds-barred honest to goodness shootout. B.B. Cunningham Jr., a member of the Jerry Lee Lewis' band, was shot to death in Memphis. He was working as a security guard at an apartment complex when he heard a gunshot around 2AM. He went to investigate and allegedly encountered a 16 yeard old with a pistol. After the smoke cleared, both Cunningham and the 16 year old were dead. Cunningham was 70.

A four months pregnant woman in Seattle boarded a bus with her 1 year old baby. Upon entering the bus, the 1 year old decided to display his ability at taking a nasty poop inside his diaper. You know, just to show off in front of the other passengers. The driver and his other guests recoiled from the foul odor, and there was only one thing to do. The driver threw her off the bus. He told her, allegedly, "Your baby smells really bad and it's not fair that we all have to smell that." Now, I don't like little kids. Can't stand to be around 'em. I've paid my dues and done my diaper duty. But, to throw a pregnant woman off a public bus because a baby does what comes natural is beyond the pale. The driver gets an F as a human being, and the passengers get an F for not coming to her defense.

Check out my YouTube video by typing Robert Coward: Each Book a New Genre.

Have a great weekend.


Major Hadal "Idiot" Nasan

Three years ago....THREE years ago, this muslim nut job army major killed thirteen people and wounded 29 in a ten minute rampage, shouting in arabic, God is great, until he was finally gunned down.

Now, here we are...waiting to see if he has to shave or not before he goes to trial. Are you kidding me?

Looks like he had no problem shaving while he was in the army before. I don't even see a 5 O'clock shadow there. Technically, this evil animal is still in the U.S. Army and must abide by Army regulations. He is making a mockery of the U.S. military and the U.S. justice system and our military courts are allowing him to do it.

Just today, the news is out that a military appeals court voted 4-2 that he has to be shaved in court and could be forcibly shaved if he continues to refuse. My question is, who are the 2 nutballs who voted against it? This guy was born in America to muslim parents. He's been a muslim all his life. ALL his life. And never not once has there been an issue about him having a bad case of xyrophobia. Not once did his muslim faith keep him from shaving...until now.

What the U.S. Military courts are doing here is an abomination not only to the memory of our soldiers who were killed and wounded during this ambush, but it is an abomination to the family's of those killed who are still waiting, and most probably mentally suffering, to see justice done. It's an abomination because the delay is all about 'facial hair'. WOULD SOMEONE PLEASE GIVE ME A BREAK???!!!!! It's not about religion. The reason is because, as I've stated, he's been a muslim ALLLLLLLL his life and never had an issue with it before now. It's a delay tactic, plain and simple. They need to send five burly marines in their and shave him with no amount of civility or tenderness. And, no...that wouldn't make us just like him. He would still be alive to go to court.

Common sense is so far and away from us, existing on some extra-dimensional plane in a black hole never to be found again, that we might as well just let the bastard go. Send him to Tehran and let them clean out his poopy pants and drain his urine bag and take care of the jerk. All we're doing by going through this process is showing how ridiculous our country and its leadership has become.

Too bad the officer on the scene that shot him didn't kill him then and there. What a waste of time this has become.

Quote of the Day