Odds and ends

May 29, 2010

We heard of the death of Dennis Hopper earlier today and spent some
time talking of movies he was in that we enjoyed over they years.
Perhaps they’ll be an ‘Easy Rider Marathon’ on one of the TV stations.
That would seem a fitting tribute to a very talented man.
And now, some odds and ends-

Sunday, May 30, is the 39th Annual Auto Show held at the Sandwich
Fairgrounds in Sandwich, Ill. It will run from 8 am to 3 pm.

Also Sunday, May 30, is the 10th Annual Mt. Carroll Mayfest Car Show
in Mt. Carroll, Ill., from 9 am to 4 pm.

Monday, Memorial Day, is the Potential Street Rods Memorial Monday
Reunion in Milledgeville, Ill. It will run from 8 am to 3:30 pm.

The Spring Car Corral and Car Show in Volo, Ill., started today and
will continue through Memorial Day.

There are numerous events planned for Memorial Day from memorial
services at cemeteries to sail boat races on the river and even art
exhibits. If the weather forecast holds up it looks to be a great
Comments are always welcome.

Long weekend

May 28, 2010

The long Memorial Day weekend is upon us. Usually people plan
trips, picnics, or get-togethers for the holiday to spend the
time with family and friends. Please take a moment on Monday
and remember all those who gave the ultimate sacrifice to keep
our country free.

I’m going to do a couple posts about events around our area
that might interest some of us. The first will be from the Lake
Davenport Sailing Club then tomorrow there will be some car
related events.

Memorial Weekend Opens Lake Davenport Sailing Club.

Lake Davenport Sailing Club (LDSC) located at 1205 E. River Drive,
upstream from the Davenport Boathouse Restaurant, will have an Open
House to all sailors, old and new, young and “not so young”
want–to-be sailors. Come on down and watch how easy it is to move
the boats from dry dock to the River.

Races start at 1:00 pm and 3:00 pm on Sunday and 10:00 am, 1 and 3
pm on Monday. Bring your chairs and sit close to the wall, get
close to the action of the sailors and the boats. Check out our
clubhouse. LDSC will be Celebrating 75 years at this location! LDSC
will also be hosting its 50th Polar Bear Regatta in the Fall!

Lake Davenport Sailing School has the first session full of
registered students of sailing and some seats are still available
in the other 2 and 3 classes. Come and learn to sail and be safe on
the River by signing up for one of our Intro-To-Sailing Classes.

For more info, call Doc at 563-650-5645 or email:
Visit us at: LDSC
and we are on Facebook under Lake Davenport Sailing Club.
Comments are always welcome.

A trillion here…

May 27, 2010

Todays rant is once again going to ruffle a few feathers.
I’m not going to say the figures mentioned here are written
in stone or can be proven beyond a shadow of doubt. But if
you have a January/February 2010 issue of Mother Jones magazine
it has some of the information in it.

There are people out there who claim this administration
isn’t costing us any more than the last one, and some of us think
spending is way out of hand. Most who argue on the ‘not out
of hand’ side claim the bailout only cost $700 billion. Those
who take the ‘spending is out of hand’ approach say it is
really $14.4 trillion.

Now I’m not a math wiz but that seems like a pretty big
difference even if I’m not used to working with that many zeros.
If you have a copy of It Takes a Pillage: Behind the Bailouts,
Bonuses, and Backroom Deals from Washington to Wall Street by
Nomi Prins you may lean toward more zeros.

She claims the Treasury Department is on the hook for $7.2
trillion. This would include $3.7 trillion for MMMF the Money
Market Mutual Fund, $1 trillion for PPIF the Public-Private
Investment Fund, $578 billion for TARP the Troubled Assests
Relief Program, $400 billion for GSE the Government-sponsered
enterprise stock purchase, $314 billion for the GSE mortage-
backed securities purchase, $301 billion for the Citigroup asset
guarantee, $260 billion for T-bill auctions to fund the Fed,
$159 billion in TARP overpayments, $118 billion for the Bank of
America asset guarantee, $100 billion for Potential International
fund liabilities, $50 billion for HAMP the Home Affordable
Modification Program, $50 billion for the Treasury exchange
stabilization fund, And $25 billion for the GSE credit facility
program. To be honest, to the best of my knowledge, $72 billion
of the TARP monies has been repaid.

The Federal Reserve gets hit for $7.2 also in her book. This
includes $1.8 trillion for the CPFF the Commercial Paper Funding
Facility, $1.25 trillion for the mortage-backed securities
purchase, $1 trillion for the Term Asset-Backed Securities Loan
Facility, $755 billion for the Foreign central bank currency
liquidity swaps, $540 billion for the Money Market Investor
Funding Facility, $300 billion for the Treasury purchase program,
$200 billion for a GSE program, $148 billion for Primary Dealer
Credit Facility, $146 billion for an ABCP, MMMF liquidation
facility, and over a dozen more.

So one wonders who has is right. Was the bailout ‘only’ $700
billion or closer to what Ms. Prins suggests?
Comments are always welcome.

Lite post

May 26, 2010

Tomorrow will be time for another rant so today why not do
a lighter post? While this post will end with a joke I want
to start out on a more serious note. So now let’s get the
latest news out of the way and then leave with a laugh.
The joke involves nuns from another country and we’ll state
here we have no grudge against nuns or people who come to
our country from other places.

The trial for the accused Guardian Angels has been moved to
June 9th. This was done to allow the accused to hire lawyers
to state their case. I have a feeling the drive-by media will
have a field day with this fact.

And now a clean joke-

Two Irish nuns have just arrived in USA by boat and one says
to the other, “I hear that the people of this country actually
eat dogs.”
“Odd,” her companion replies, “but if we shall live in America,
we might as well do as the Americans do.”
As they sit, they hear a push cart vendor yell “Get your dogs
here” and they both walk towards the hot dog cart. “Two dogs,
please! ,” says one.
The vendor is very pleased to oblige, wraps both hot dogs in
foil and hands them over. Excited, the nuns hurry to a bench
and begin to unwrap their ‘dogs’.
The mother superior is first to open hers. She begins to blush
and then, staring at it for a moment, leans to the other nun
and whispers cautiously, “What part did you get?”

Comments are always welcome.

Guest post

May 25, 2010

A friend asked me to post a letter on the blog so here it is-

Subject: Where have all the flowers gone…

I’ve been cruising the local blogs while deciding whether or not to impose my opinion on others again and have noticed a subliminal change in enthusiasm. Even before emailing QC Online’s John Beydler requesting he reestablish my site, it appears that very few writers continue to post. I wonder why?

Curiosity drove be to check each bloggers site and the results were depressing:

“An Average Joe” last posted on September 8, 2009.
“davenportsixthward” last posted on November 8, 2008.
“The Courtroom Insider” last posted on February 10, 2010.
“Taking a Crack at it” last posted on February 4, 2010.
“Moline Democrap Maverick” last posted on December 27, 2009…deceased!

And those blogs are still ‘above the fold’ at the Dispatch/Argus online blog page. Others who have ‘fallen asleep’ include:

“Quad City Heat”, nothing since August 10, 2009.
“Veto Power”, nothing since June 19, 2009.
“Ian Frank, Alderman”, nothing since May 3, 2008.

To add to the embarrassment, the following listed blog is CLOSED:

“Rock Island Ward 7”.

Quite possibly my request for reinstatement will be denied. The image, or what the public perceives of a business, is its most important product. Maybe the Dispatch/Argus is next on the print media’s chopping block or maybe Randy Fisk (the new blog boss) is not promotion-minded or maybe the company became bored with the blogosphere, but it’s obvious this page needs help. Who out there is willing to regenerate the excitement of yesteryear? Even WOC’s Jim Fisher no longer reads the ‘QCBloggers’.

QC Ghost

Comments are always welcome.

Keep Angels’ Patrol

May 24, 2010

A friend was good enough to email me concerning a recent editorial
in the QC Times titled Suspend Angels’ Patrol that had
the Times editorial board as author. Since my response would take
up a lot of the comment section to the story I thought a response
as the Cruisin’ editorial board may be in order. Please remember
that this is the opinion of the Cruisin’ editorial board.

Since their piece was stated to be an opinion I will try to keep
that in mind with my opinion of their opinion. As someone who has
personally been on over 200 Safety Patrols in which neither a
Guardian Angel or member of the public was injured I have to
wonder how old the editorial board is. It is obvious that the
members have never made a mistake or had a situation get out of

Anyone who seriously thinks Guardian Angels go out looking to
hurt someone during a safety patrol has not done much research.
The International Alliance of the Guardian Angels would not have
been around for over 31 years if that was the case.

In this age of the internet spreading news almost as it happens
it only takes a short time for any story to span the globe. I
don’t know how an intelligent person could believe that we are
not aware of that.

We, as a group, have asked the city for nothing beyond doing
the background checks. We have never asked the city for a dime
of financing, or a place to meet. As volunteers we are told by
trainers in the Guardian Angels that our jobs, family, and schools
come first.

Based on the wording of the opinion piece I am led to believe
that the Times editorial staff must not read their own paper.
In a recent column it was stated that the local chapter will
not patrol without the supervision of the Chicago chapter. If
we only patrol under the direction of a chapter that has been
around for several years, and those involved and charged with
the incident are not allowed to patrol; where is the problem?

Lastly, I don’t know where a newspaper gets off being judge,
jury, and executioner before the case even goes to court. I
have to wonder what happened to ‘innocent until proven guilty’.
Comments are always welcome.

Old man talking

May 23, 2010

The following is from an email I received and I don’t know if it is true or not but feel it says what a lot of Americans are thinking and worth repeating. For those who don’t remember Lee Iococca saved Chrysler Corporation with inovative ideas not bail-outs. He is now retired and in his 80s. Here is what he had to say-

‘Am I the only guy in this country who’s fed up with what’s happening? Where the hell is our outrage with this so called president? We should be screaming bloody murder! We’ve got a gang of tax cheating clueless leftists trying to steer our ship of state right over a cliff, we’ve got corporate gangsters stealing us blind, and we can’t even run a ridiculous cash-for-clunkers program without losing $26 billion of the taxpayers’ money, much less build a hybrid car. But instead of getting mad, everyone sits around and nods their heads when the politicians say, ‘trust me the economy is getting better..’

Better? You’ve got to be kidding. This is America , not the damned, ‘Titanic’. I’ll give you a sound bite: ‘Throw all the Democrats out along with Obama!’

You might think I’m getting senile, that I’ve gone off my rocker, and maybe I have. But someone has to speak up. I hardly recognize this country anymore..

The most famous business leaders are not the innovators but the guys in handcuffs.. While we’re fiddling in Afghanistan , Iran is completing their nuclear bombs and missiles and nobody seems to know what to do. And the liberal press is waving ‘pom-poms’ instead of asking hard questions. That’s not the promise of the ‘ America ‘ my parents and yours traveled across the ocean for. I’ve had enough. How about you?

I’ll go a step further. You can’t call yourself a patriot if you’re not outraged. This is a fight I’m ready and willing to have. The Biggest ‘C’ is Crisis! (Iacocca elaborates on nine C’s of leadership, with crisis being the first.)

Leaders are made, not born. Leadership is forged in times of crisis. It’s easy to sit there with thumb up your butt and talk theory. Or send someone else’s kids off to war when you’ve never seen a battlefield yourself. It’s another thing to lead when your world comes tumbling down.

On September 11, 2001, we needed a strong leader more than any other time in our history. We needed a steady hand to guide us out of the ashes. A hell of a mess, so here’s where we stand.

We’re immersed in a bloody war now with no plan for winning and no plan for leaving.. But our soldiers are dying daily.

We’re running the biggest deficit in the history of the world, and it’s getting worse every day!

We’ve lost the manufacturing edge to Asia , while our once-great companies are getting slaughtered by health care costs.

Gas prices are going to skyrocket again, and nobody in power has a lucid plan to open drilling to solve the problem. This country has the largest oil reserves in the WORLD, and we cannot drill for it because the politicians have been bought by the flea-hugging environmentalists.

Our schools are in a complete disaster because of the teachers union.

Our borders are like sieves and they want to give all illegal’s amnesty and free healthcare.

The middle class is being squeezed to death every day.

These are times that cry out for leadership.

But when you look around, you’ve got to ask: ‘Where have all the leaders gone?’ Where are the curious, creative communicators? Where are the people of character, courage, conviction, omnipotence, and common sense? I may be a sucker for alliteration, but I think you get the point..

Name me a leader who has a better idea for homeland security than making us take off our shoes in airports and throw away our shampoo?

We’ve spent billions of dollars building a huge new bureaucracy, and all we know how to do is react to things that have already happened.

Everyone’s hunkering down, fingers crossed, hoping the government will make it better for them. Now, that’s just crazy.. Deal with life.

Name me an industry leader who is thinking creatively about how we can restore our competitive edge in manufacturing. Who would have believed that there could ever be a time when ‘The Big Three’ referred to Japanese car companies? How did this happen, and more important, look what Obama did about it!

Name me a government leader who can articulate a plan for paying down the debit, or solving the energy crisis, or managing the health care problem. The silence is deafening. But these are the crises that are eating away at our country and milking the middle class dry.

I have news for the Chicago gangsters in Congress. We didn’t elect you to turn this country into a losing European Socialist state. What is everybody so afraid of? That some bonehead on NBC or CNN news will call them a name? Give me a break. Why don’t you guys show some spine for a change?

Had Enough? Hey, I’m not trying to be the voice of gloom and doom here. I’m trying to light a fire. I’m speaking out because I have hope – I believe in America .. In my lifetime, I’ve had the privilege of living through some of America ‘s greatest moments. I’ve also experienced some of our worst crises: The ‘Great Depression,’ ‘World War II,’ the ‘Korean War,’ the ‘Kennedy Assassination,’ the ‘Vietnam War,’ the 1970’s oil crisis, and the struggles of recent years since 9/11.
Comments are always welcome.

Been there

May 21, 2010

Since some in the media are intent on milking a recent incident
involving the local Guardian Angels I’m going to do one more post
on the subject before cruisin’ on. The local chapter has been
here since March of 2007 and I am still proud to say I’m a member
of the local chapter.

As someone who has been on a number of patrols I feel confident
that I may know a few things most people don’t. The most obvious
to me is that I’ve never met someone who was detained that didn’t
claim they were innocent. Most of these ‘innocent’ people went to
court and were found guilty.

Another is that a Guardian Angel will always use verbal conflict
resolution as a first attempt to stop a conflict. Talking down a
situation is always the preferred method.

We are trained not to react to verbal abuse and taunts. Calling
us names will not set anyone off or cause a citizens arrest. You
are welcome to your opinion.

We patrol in dangerous areas without weapons, on foot, to help
make our city safer. We do not allow anyone to go on patrol if
they are in a bad mood, using alcohol or drugs, or out of uniform.

All members do not carry handcuffs. Those who do are trained to
use them so that those getting cuffed do not get hurt. I carry
a small flashlight because it comes in handy.

You can join the Guardian Angels regardless of age, sex, or race
if you pass the background check. You cannot join if you are
openly racist or sexist, handicapped to a point you can’t walk 8
or more miles on a patrol, have a felony, or are on probation.

We have escorted little old ladies to the mini-mart if asked,
have walked elderly citizens home through rough neighborhoods,
searched for missing children, pushed stalled vehicles out of
traffic, assisted the police when asked, talked with
various civic groups and much more.

So if that makes us the bad guys, so be it.
Comments are always welcome.

A short rant

May 20, 2010

It’s thursday and I had a rant all set to post before I changed
my mind. I appears to me that yesterday must have been the
official ‘pick on the Guardian Angels day’. We’ve seen mention in
both newspapers, on TV, and heard it on the radio.

As happens there are those among us who would trash the
group and some of the comments I’ve read online leave no
doubt what some people think of us. No Guardian Angel has
been proven guilty in a court of law yet all the armchair skeptics
have an opinion.

Nowhere in the coverage did I see mentioned that before we
graduate we have to be familiar with local law, know CPR, learn
to withstand verbal abuse, demonstrate patrol protocol, pass a
background, and physically patrol each weekend.

The Guardian Angels have been around since 1979 when Curtis
Sliwa started the group in New York. The organization has since
grown to over 140 chapters in 14 countries. The group is not
a fight club full of brawlers but a group of concerned citizens
who are tired of the direction their communities are heading
and want to make them safer. We dare to care.
Comments are always welcome.

A job well done

May 19, 2010

In this post I’m not going to rant, talk about cars,
or complain about our president. Sometimes we do a
post on things other than the administration or cars.
In this post we’d like someone who we consider a friend.

Sometimes when we deal with a company and are pleased
with the results we mention it here. In a post last month I
mentioned QC Binders and the services they provide. Ron contacted
me and we decided to put a book together to learn a
little about the process.

We scrounged up a couple hundred pictures to start with,
Ron put together a rough draft and added text to the mix.
He used our pictures and even took some of his own to
flesh out the book.

We had a handful of meetings, exchanged dozens of emails,
and talked on the phone a few times to check the progress
and ensure we liked the direction the book was taking. He
never complained about changes and encouraged any ideas
no matter how crazy they sounded. The book is now finished
and I have to say we really like how it turned out.

If you have an idea, a lot of pictures, or whatever, you
might want to think about having Ron put a book together
for you. If you only want one copy or a hundred it’s not
a problem and you can make your book public or private.

We chose the Guardian Angels as the subject of our book
and decided to keep it private so only members can buy it.
Every member who saw the first copy was impressed with how
the book turned out and we’d like to thank Ron for being
so patient while working with a group.
Comments are always welcome.