Monthly Archives: December 2010

Letters from New Zealand: And the news for 2011 is …..

DUNEDIN, N.Z. –The pictures of two dozen residents and their New Year’s resolutions fill the entire front page of this morning’s Otago Daily News.  It’s not the stuff of expose, but it says a bit about the ’50s-era, family-based quality … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Letters from New Zealand: Stay left, look right

DUNEDIN, N.Z. — Lifelong habits are hard to break. That’s my excuse, at least, when, for the 79th time or so, I turn on the windshield wipers while trying to prepare for a turn.  As you may know, New Zealanders … Continue reading

Posted in New Zealand, travel | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Letters from New Zealand: An earthquake, a deluge and then the clouds part

PORT HILLS, N.Z. – All I’d done was order a boysenberry ice cream cone. “I like your accent,” said the dark-haired young woman at Sign of the Kiwi Teahouse, built in 1916 as part of the vision of environmental conservationist … Continue reading

Posted in New Zealand, travel | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Congressional constituent service at its finest

ABOVE THE PACIFIC OCEAN, Dec. 27, 2010 — I want to tip my hat to Sen. John Kerry’s staff. Oh, I know the START Treaty was a really big deal for America’s credibility and world peace.  But my thank you is … Continue reading

Posted in air travel, travel | Tagged | Leave a comment

The day a crisp dollar bill arrived in the mail

I’m used to getting Christmas cards this time of year, but they don’t usually come with cash enclosed.  Yesterday, however, I got a letter from Arbitron (“You Count in the Ratings”) with a brand new $1 bill folded into it. … Continue reading

Posted in marketing, polling | Tagged , | 2 Comments

With 2 kids, dog and stalker cat, Christmas poses logistical problems

LEXINGTON, Mass. — Our three-bedroom, two-story Colonial usually has ample space for Kathy and me.  But when both our daughters and their kids arrive next week, things could get interesting. Mind you, even our day-to-day life isn’t without its quirks. … Continue reading

Posted in Christmas, family, pets, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Is the president being played for a sucker?

An interesting column by Paul Krugman today hints at perhaps the most conclusive reason Democrats should reject the tax “compromise” that Barack Obama negotiated with Republicans.  It just may ensure a catastrophic defeat for Democrats in 2012. Krugman concedes that … Continue reading

Posted in economics, obama's tax plan, taxes | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Tax ‘compromise’: The rich get richer

I guess I should be excited because I personally stand to gain something close to a $2,000 tax break next year in the deal President Obama forged with Congressional Republicans.  But I’m anything but. Once again, the disparity between rich … Continue reading

Posted in economics, Obama, Politics, taxes | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Guardian offers fresh takes on WikiLeaks and its cables, from the humorous to the troubling

I’m finding that it’s not good enough to stop at The New York Times to digest the State Department cables dumped en masse by WikiLeaks. The Guardian in London gives a different emphasis and interpretation to some of the materials … Continue reading

Posted in media coverage, wikileaks | Tagged , | 2 Comments