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Not Only Am I Pro – Death Penalty, I’m Anti – Lethal Injection Because It’s Not Harsh Enough

April 29th, 2013 by Michael Tabor

Can anyone think of a better way to exit this life than to have a great meal, lie down, go to sleep and pass away without pain or any sense of awareness? I have known the most wonderful, law – abiding human beings agonizingly suffer for years with cancer and yet knowing this our society or some people still find the putting to death of sociopathic murdering fiends to be inhumane. A disclaimer, let me be clear here, yes I am pro death penalty but we must be absolutely 100% certain that we have the right guy. If there is even a scintilla of doubt, we should commute the sentence until we know for sure.

Quite frankly, I think for a monster like Dzhokhar Tsarnaev ,  one of the the 2 Boston Marathon killers, lethal injection is not punishment enough. This sicko’s malicious and cowardly act killed 3 people and injured 264. I would not object at all if we meted out punishment that bordered on cruel and unusual i.e let him stew in an 8’ by 10’ or rather 6’ by 8’ cage and then electrocute him rather than the usual lethal injection because I think the former is painful & more befitting to the heinous crime he committed.
People know me as a liberal which I proudly acknowledge but my motto is that All Life is precious and each and every one of us is uniquely special, so if some twisted fiend elects to terminate a special, precious, and unique human being, then he, she or rather it must be put down !!!

So Whadayathink ? What do you think ? Some of my very good liberal friends disagree with me on this issue and are somewhat surprised that I hold this view but I am always pro – victim; you take a life then we as a society have a right to protect ourselves. Another objection I hear is that capital punishment is not a deterrent, which I concur, but these anti – death penalty folks are missing the point.

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My Kind Of People

April 24th, 2013 by Magdalena Tabor

Growing up, and even through my twenties, I had a lot of friends. There were always three or four especially good ones I could confide in. But then life moves on and we develop closer bonds with our spouses, and if we have children the circle widens to include the parents of their friends and so on. Relatives, once the staple in the branching of the family nucleus, either move away or broaden their horizons much the way our former friends had. If, like me, you don’t have children, you might seek the companionship of the ever loyal canine, or in my case, have a predisposition to feline fancy. As a kid, I always loved them and still do, now more than ever.
What is it about cats that I admire more so than most people? For one thing, they’re adorably cute. How many adults can you say that about? They don’t tell you what to do and they do what they want. Wait. Let me rephrase that. They do tell you what to do and they do what they want but you don’t mind doing it (most of the time). They’re resourceful. If it’s raining out and you’re not home to let them in, they’ll wait it out under the awning or under a bush and never bellyache about it. They don’t whine the way people do and unlike people who are easily distracted or pretend to care, when you talk to your pets they actually listen. They may not know what you’re saying but a gentle rub against the knee does more to console than anything anyone can say. I could go on and on about the attributes of my sphinxlike friends. Why is it then, they’re so hated by some people?
They don’t come when you call them? How would you like to come running every time someone goes, spss, spss, spss? They poop in your garden? Consider it free fertilizer and a lot less expensive than what you can purchase at The Home Depot, or be a man and dispose of it with your wife’s cute little garden gloves. You pick up dog poop, don’t you? It’s a lot less smellier. At least the stuff disintegrates, not like the junk people have no qualms about dumping everywhere they go: trash in parks, preserves and beaches, all manner of unwanted household furnishings thrown guiltlessly into rivers, oceans, and roadsides, cups and food wrappers from the local Wendy’s or Taco Bell stuffed into a neighbor’s hedge or simply tossed out the window of a passing car on a highway.
In recent days (turning into weeks now) three of my five outdoor cats went missing in less than a week’s time. They rarely leave the yard except for perhaps the occassional visit to your backyard. They didn’t go for a walk to never come back. Some heartless (I won’t even call neighbor) thing living in close proximity decided to take them for a walk, either in the literal or not so literal sense. I don’t know who you are but I want you to know that I despise you. You’re not fit to walk the earth and share breathing space with the rest of humanity, you evil, decrepit, soul-less entity. Now that I’ve purged myself somewhat from weeks of uncontrollable crying maybe, just maybe, I can move ahead with grace, one of the traits I’ve adopted from my furry children. We’re survivalists. What in hell are you?

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Should We Show The Horror?

April 18th, 2013 by Michael Tabor

Time Magazine is getting heat from some people who think they’ve gone too far by displaying a picture of a terrified 3 year old boy with dirt on his face and blood on his head that will be on the cover of a special edition of the Boston Marathon tragedy. The critics are saying: “This is what the terrorists want” or “this is blood money and exploitation.” Certainly there is some truth to these assertions and I acknowledge this, but I am for one all for showing what “really” happens in war, terror attacks, and some national tragedies “if” the publication is NOT exploitative (I guess this maybe at the crux of what’s going on at Time).

Portray reality – don’t overplay or underplay the savage brutality of terror and war. Yes, the adage ‘If it bleeds it leads’ is a fact and news publications are in the business of making money, but a free press is perhaps the most important staple of an open and transparent democracy.  I actually don’t think we show enough of the unimaginable horrors of war – especially concerning those who survive but are maimed, crippled and damaged. Phil Donahue and Bill Moyers produced a feature documentary depicting the daily struggles of a young man who served his country and was sadly victim of an explosive in which shrapnel tore through his young  body leaving him paralyzed and left to spend the rest of his life in a wheel chair. What is it like having to go to the bathroom in a colostomy bag? Or consider the ordeal of simply bathing when you can’t move and need others to help you do what every other healthy individual takes for granted. The mundane existence of what happens to damaged soldiers, physically and psychologically, is simply not shown ENOUGH ! Before we shuffle off our sons and daughters or before a young person decides to join the military on his or her own, they and we ought to know what they are getting themselves into. Not everyone makes it back in one piece and one has to think long and hard about whether or not you wish to sacrifice life and limb for this country.
I also think we have an obligation to show the public what happens when twisted – evil – monsters blow up innocent people; what is the point of sugar – coating an event when our country is attacked ? Now certainly exploitation and exhibiting carnage for the sake of bloodlust is another matter e.g. thankfully the media had the good sense not to show the bloodied bodies of the children at Newtown.

So WhaDaYaThink ? What do you think ? Is the Time Magazine picture exploitation or not?

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Sadly, All We Can Do is Hope

April 16th, 2013 by Michael Tabor

What an absolutely senseless tragedy this Boston Marathon bombing is – and such a bizarre target! How can we possibly protect ourselves from such evil acts? The sad truth is, we can’t. Israel has been living with this reality and now we have to carry on with the knowledge that there are people who are full of hate and want to harm innocent people; there is no place on the planet where one is absolutely 100% safe from terrorism.
This has been the first terrorist attack since 9/11 (again we still don’t know who did this and why) and though I’ve always contended that the W. Bush presidency was one of the worst administrations in history, it however gets an A+ in terms of protecting us against terrorism. Who knows how many potential terrorist attacks Homeland Security thwarted – just remarkable. However, the thought of attempting to protect the entire nation against some lunatic[s] machinations and a target happens to be the finish line at the Boston Marathon, it almost seems like an exercise in futility.
Magdalena and I attended a Bluegrass concert on Long Island on Sunday in which there were approximately 75 – 100 people present and the truth of the matter is if someone wanted to blow the place up, there would have been no way of stopping it. Some sort of explosion wasn’t on my mind and I’m assuming nobody was thinking about terror here. The only time I think about a possible attack is when I’m on the subway, railroad, perhaps driving over the George Washington Bridge, etc. If we worried about bombs when going to a picnic or a gathering or event of any sort, what kind of a life would one have?
So WhaDaYaThink ? What do you think? I also must applaud all the incredibly heroic folks who assisted the wounded by providing clothing for tourniquets, given blood and more. Some of these heroes were the runners themselves – can you imagine going out of his or her way to help other people after having run 26 miles. As always, when some national tragedy occurs we see the absolute worst and best in mankind. Prayers and thoughts for the deceased, wounded and their families.

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This Kid is Starting to Bother Me

April 15th, 2013 by Michael Tabor
Justin Bieber is basically a marginally talented teenybopper singer who sadly is starting to take himself a little too seriously. Initially I thought the kid was harmless, but recently some of his antics have become somewhat irritating and the little spoiled brat now needs a spank on the bottom.
I know most of the stuff is not the kid’s fault – the moneymaking show – biz whores have created the pussy -pretty-boy image at Bieber’s expense but God, there can be worse things in life. I’m basically going to tweet not blog, because the kid is just an immature baby and not worth talking about – but show some respect, kid – done!!!

So WhaDaYaThink ? What do you think ? I’ve YouTubed this kid and I personally don’t get it, but then again I’m not a 12 year old girl.

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Window At 5:15

April 13th, 2013 by Magdalena Tabor

The afternoon sun
Plays at the window.
Tasting the stained glass
Like candy in a jar.
Every medallion,
Every fragment
Explodes
In brilliance
Inside my mouth.

Her shadow passes.
Her flickered flame
Dances
Like a butterfly
Just outside the net.
The showcase dims.
The jewel box empties.
Precious gems
Of stolen moments
The pauper does without.

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Do You Want to Join The Church of Scientology?

April 10th, 2013 by Michael Tabor
When I was 20 years old, I was somewhat of a confused, neurotic lost soul looking for some meaning and direction in my life. I was still in college but didn’t see nor care a whole lot about my future; I’d just lost my faith in Christianity (the religion with which I was raised up), a former high school friend of mine was murdered and everything about my life just seemed like a fragmented and utterly  meaningless meandering mess. To add to my miserable confused state of mind, I was suffering from intense panic attacks – almost on a daily basis; btw, this was before Prozac and certainly precedes the internet days and the general understanding that millions of people suffer from panic and severe anxiety attacks. Today, panic attacks are discussed openly (which is great !) but at that time, I honestly thought that I and another close friend of mine were the only ones on the planet that suffered from this awful affliction. And, incidentally I discussed my panic disorder with absolutely nobody, except for my other perceived damaged friend with whom I could commiserate; it quite frankly was an embarrassment and I thought that these attacks made me weak and unmanly.
I still suffer from mostly anxiety (as opposed to panic – which is far more severe) attacks but I’ve found a way to live with it and is now really no big deal. What I really want to touch on is Dianetics and the Church of Scientology; yes I read the book ‘Dianetics’, learned all about “engrams” , getting clear and I had this hopeful yet fanciful notion that this scientology stuff was the answer to all my problems and would at last long give purpose and meaning to my life. Long story short, it took one 4 hour or so visit to one of their myriad worldwide locations (churches) to realize that this scientology is just a lot of bunk and at best is nothing more than new age pop psychology yet a sprawling prodigious cult. This visit of mine occurred about 30 years ago so my memory of all the details is a little sketchy but I do know that everyone I met appeared to me to be wildly neurotic if not outright nuts; there was also a whole lot of, chanting, holding hands, and “clay molding” (don’t ask me what this was all about). When I was finally permitted to leave that madhouse, I sighed and said oh well – so much for the L.Ron Hubbard Panacea.
Last night I saw an interesting movie, ‘The Master’, which is loosely based on scientology and which actually prompted me to write this blog today. The film, directed by one of today’s most talented and acclaimed directors, Paul Thomas Anderson, was though cinematically breathtakingly beautifully shot and wonderfully acted (would anyone expect anything less from Mr. Anderson and his 3 leads – Philip Seymour Hoffman, Joaquin Phoenix, and Amy Adams) was as weird, surreal, and just as bizarre as my experience was with the scientology folks.
What I don’t understand for the life of me is the incredible attraction and appeal to this wacky cult. They have a worldwide presence, millions of members including some of the most famous people in the world in all walks of life (but mostly actors interestingly enough) including: John Travolta, Tom Cruise (Tom was said to be outraged with Anderson and his film ‘The Master’ because it essentially depicted L.Ron Hubbard, played by Hoffman, as a charlatan and the whole movement to be a cult, which it is), Kirstie Alley, Chick Corea (famous Jazz pianist), Lisa Marie Presley, and here’s a weird member – Charles Manson.
So WhaDaYaThink ? What do you think ? Incidentally The Church of Scientology is very powerful, has deep pockets, and there have been stories about the cult resorting to violence, blackmail, and extortion to 1. Allay any negative press or stop anyone or any group from undermining their legitimacy. 2. Maintain their membership.


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Taking Tea

April 8th, 2013 by Magdalena Tabor

Cups and saucers
Plates and platters,
Stacked at rest
From clink and clatter.
Silent as the sunlight
Shatters
Every rim.

Chips and hairline
Fractures bared.
Honesty in blankness
Stares.
Choosing one to ease
Its care
And fill to brim.

Contemplating
Form and function.
Nibbling on
The caused compunction.
Sipping simply
In conjunction,
Poised and prim.

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The Man Who Loved Film Dies (1942 – 2013)

April 5th, 2013 by Michael Tabor
Roger Ebert was a powerhouse within the universe of film; he was the first film critic to win a Pulitzer Prize and was even given his very own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.  The New York Times called him the critic for the common man because he made film criticism accessible to everyone with his thumbs up – or – down TV approach with Gene Siskel and then later with Richard Roeper.

What I really loved most about Roger was the fact that not only was he a great writer who had a unique style of personalizing every film he reviewed but furthermore he always seemed to bring that special “magic” to the movies – his passion for moving pictures was second to none whether one agreed with him or not. I faithfully purchased his yearbooks (which were basically a collection of his reviews he had written in his syndicated column for that particular year) and because his writing was so good and interesting, I usually read the reference book straight through like a novel. Not only did he review all of the expected mainstream films but he would also dip into some of the off the charts bizarre indies such as ‘Sick: The Life& Death of Bob Flanagan, Supermasochist’ 1997.  Mr. Ebert wrote with his signature personal flair,
“This is one of the most agonizing films I have ever seen. It tells the story of a man who was born with cystic fibrosis, a disease that fills the lungs with thick, sticky mucus, so that breathing is hard and painful, and an early death is the prognosis. He was in pain all his life, and in a gesture of defiance he fought pain with more pain. With Sheree Rose as his partner, he became a performance artist, using his own body as a canvas for museum shows, gallery exhibits, lectures, and performances. He was the literal embodiment of the joke about the man who liked to hit himself with a hammer because it felt so good when he stopped.” Weird, compelling, and impossible to stop reading – that was Roger Ebert.


Ebert lived his life through the movies; he was a cast character in all of the movies he saw. Sadly, as we all know Roger suffered terribly with thyroid , salivary glands and chin cancer; he even lost the ability to speak and even eat and drink (he was fed through a tube, can you imagine ?) However, Roger never lost his passion for the medium he was made for. Anthony Hopkins’s ‘Slipstream’ was considered a complete disaster and panned by everyone except for Roger Ebert; having been ill himself, of course Ebert could identify completely with Anthony Hopkins’s sick character. In fact I personally hated the film the first time I saw it and after reading Ebert’s review and watching ‘Slipstream’ again, I got it – I saw what Ebert saw.

I didn’t like all the movies Roger enjoyed but thanks to his unique writing style I always understood why Roger Ebert loved a movie. I also want to note that not unlike Ebert, I, too think there are very few movies that are absolutely flawless in every regard from beginning to end; however this doesn’t suggest that you shouldn’t see a film if this is in fact the case. There may be something about a particular film which makes it worth seeing, or perhaps that have moments (for me what immediately comes to mind is ‘Full Metal Jacket’ in which the first half was absolutely classic Stanley Kubrick and yet the second half of the movie was almost unwatchable) So here’s a thumbs up to ‘Citizen Kane’ and ‘Casablanca’ – Roger Ebert’s 2 favorite movies of all time. So, WhaDaYaThink ? What Do You Think ?

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Wind!

April 3rd, 2013 by Magdalena Tabor

Fast. Furious. Unforgiving.
On the cusp of indecision.
Gusting. Thrusting.
Hell bent.
Wind!

Scare crow hair-do.
Oh-oh. What flew?
Hatless? Hairless!
Dumbfella. Umbrella bent
In the wind!

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