THE SANDBOX ~ Issue #42 ~ June 20, 1999

"In the future days, which we seek to make secure, we
 look forward to a world founded upon four essential
 human freedoms. The first is freedom of speech and
 expression--everywhere in the world."

     President Franklin D. Roosevelt ~ 1882 - 1945
            Address to Congress, Jan. 6 1941

Participants in this issue are:

Al Parker (53), Jim Fowler (72), Joe Ford (63),
Tom Storms (69), Ron Richards (63), 
John Allen (66), Tom Hann (61), 
Vern Blanchette (64), Vera Smith Robbins (58), 
John Adkins (62), Ralph Myrick (51) 


Subject: The SANDBOX and Free Speech
From:    Al Parker (53)

The right to Free Speech in America seems ever
 more endangered with the passing of time.  In recent 
 weeks your Free Speech Rights in The SANDBOX 
 have become endangered as well.

Should the SANDBOX remain an (almost) unbridled
 bastion of Free Speech, or should certain guidelines, 
 such as "the amount of rudeness allowed" become
 imposed?  During the past several weeks there seems 
 to have been a growing consensus that some form of 
 control should be exercised over submissions that are
 published in The SANDBOX.  

Therefore, a SANDBOX Neighborhood Protocol and
 Standards Criteria is now undergoing careful
 consideration.  But before this is all laid out, I'd like
 you all to consider just a few things:
1. What does Free Speech really mean to you?

2. What does Free Speech mean to Americans today?

3. Where would our nation be now, had Free Speech
 not taken place during the molding of America?

4. How much are you willing to have your own Free
 Speech rights and privileges limited?  (Here, in The
 SANDBOX, or anywhere else.)

5. What are you willing to do today to help preserve
 this marvelous Freedom so vital to America, for you
 and for your prodigy?  What are you willing to
 sacrifice?  What degree of discomfort are you willing
 to endure in order to keep that Freedom alive?  Would
 you rather "separate the tares from the wheat" for
 yourself, or have someone else do that for you?
6. If something is said here, in substance or method,
 with which you disagree, would you rather articulate
 your own feelings on the matter, give some thought to
 it, just let it pass for now, or abdicate altogether your
 opportunity to redress or "hear" the views of others
 and talk about things important to you? 

6. If you want me to exercise any form of SANDBOX
 censorship, where do you want it to start?  Where do
 you want it to end?

Perhaps I will have more to say and more to ask you on
 this subject as time goes on.  Most importantly, 
 though, I want to hear from you.

With the utmost sincerity, I remain,
 (and only God knows why),
 Your SANDBOX Moderator.

Actually, on reflection, I do know why I keep on doing
 this. It's because I still believe The SANDBOX is an
 important forum and a tremendous Great American
 Participation Opportunity for us all. 

There's been a lot of useful information and some very 
 thoughtful insight already published and discussed in 
 The SANDBOX during it's relatively young life.  From
 time to time there's been entertainment, too, and for
 better or worse, some things that may have raised your
 blood pressure a notch or few.  Many have been
 inspired by some of the things you've said here.
 Several of you have placed articles here as good or
 better than anything seen in national publications, but
 with insights from your own experiences that the
 nationals so often lack.  (That doesn't mean you have
 to be polished and professional to talk with us here,
 however.  Please don't get that idea.) So many of you
 have, in your own way, contributed so much of value
 that it would take hours to enumerate it all. Let
 me express my personal thanks right now for all of
 that. Hundreds of your worthwhile entries have been
 posted here.  Please keep it up!

When all is done and said, The SANDBOX will always
 be be just as good, but only as good, as what you are
 willing to share with us.

Oh, yes... there's one more reason at least, why I'm
 still here.  I enjoy you all and just happen to care about
 every one of you!

Thus I remain, and still maintain: 

"If anything you have to say is worth saying anywhere,
 it's well-worth saying here!"

And let me say this too, before I go: Because this is
 YOUR SANDBOX, whether YOU agree or disagree
 with anything that's said in this little microcosm of
 America, or even in how it is expressed, YOU will
 always have the Freedom to Reply!  Pray, if you do
 pray at all, that Our America at large may continue
 also, to retain that same very rare and precious
 liberty— The Right to Reply, the Right to Speak Out! 
 Don't you dare give up that right!  It's inalienable!  I
 believe our Creator and Founding Fathers delineated a
 very clear choice for US to make regarding the
 continuance of all the precious Freedoms they've so
 generously handed down to us, at so great a price 
 and risk to ALL of them!

That very clear choice is simply this:  

Yes, I am shouting now!

 I certainly must agree with Franklin Delano Roosevelt
 that the foremost of all our freedoms is the freedom of
 speech and expression.  Without that freedom, all our
 other freedoms are doomed!  We must never let that
 freedom die.  Exercise it!

 Winston Churchill spoke eloquently when he charged 
 his people to fight with all their might to preserve 
 Britain during the horror of World War II.  I would 
 apply those same words and energy  to doing all 
 that is necessary to preserve Free Speech in
 America: "We shall go on to the end,...we shall fight
 on the seas and oceans... we shall defend our island,
 whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the
 beaches we shall fight on the landing grounds, we 
 shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight 
 in the hills' we shall never surrender."  Among those
 things we must never surrender, is our inalienable right
 to free speech and expression!  Exercise it!

If you value this precious heritage as much as I, you
 will never, ever, let any mere mortal, through
 inconsiderate remarks or by any other means, turn 
 you away from any opportunity to speak from your
 heart.  Not in this world.  Not in America.  Not in 

Of course there will be times when something is said
 that will not be worth replying to.  But don't give up
 the right to choose when, from your heart or from
 your conscience, or from the very core of your
 basic intelligence, you have something you need or
 want to share with your extended Bomber Family here.
 Don't be driven off.  Don't deprive us.  Let your
 voice be heard!

I will let the rest of this issue of The SANDBOX speak
 for itself, as it expresses and addresses YOUR
 interests and YOUR concerns.

O.K. One more thing.  Politeness and respect
 toward your fellow alumni does count toward
 more effective communication and is very much
 appreciated by most of us, including me. If all of us
 can make the effort to treat each other humanely,
 without demeaning or disparaging, as we champion
 the values we hold dear and express our feelings about
 things that are of interest to us, maybe we can avoid
 the awesome and awful specter of SANDBOX
 sanctions and censorship.  That may require some
 thoughtful self-editing for some of us, but quite worth
 the effort, wouldn't you agree?

 One thing I learned during several years as a member
 of Toastmasters International, is that your powers of
 persuasion are generally not enhanced anyway, when
 you begin by "pissing people off." 

Let's try to use all of our freedoms responsibly.  Long
 live The SANDBOX.  Long live AMERICA!

— Al Parker (Class of 1953)
     Still living and learning and lovin' it at age 63


Subj:   Over The Line
From:   Jim Fowler (72) ~

  John Allen has gone way over the line. Either he
 should apologize [not some holier than now phony
 bullshit apology] or he should be kicked out of this
 forum. Unlike Flag burning, his behavior is akin to
 yelling fire in a movie theater. Bye Bye John.

                       Jim Fowler "72"

From:   Ron Richards (63) ~
To:     SANDBOX Members

If Mike Franco doesn't participate here any longer, a
 fairly significant part of the intelligent commentary will
 have been lost.  Maybe the supportive comments from
 Mike Pearson and Arthur Roberts will cause Mike to
 reconsider.  For those of you who missed it, here is
 what Arthur wrote:
             Pray for Peace.
             Pray for Love.
             Pray for a kinder, gentler John Allen

I would join in Arthur's prayer.  I would also add that a
 lot of the problems that Mr. Allen knows so much
 about are caused by people like Mr. Allen.  Too little
 analysis.  Too many pat answers.  Too little

Ron Richards ('63)


Subj:   Take me off the list
From: (Joe Ford) (63)

Sandbox maintenance;

I got on this list when the Richland folk felt that
 "controversial topics" should not appear in messages
 posted to the original e-mail list.

I've discovered that the Sandbox doesn't do much
 for me. For some reason, John Allen apparently feels
 he's got to lecture all of us, and he's simply rude. I'm
 tired of reading his rants and attacks.

Take me off the list.

Thanks in advance.

--Joe Ford


Subj:   Re: To Mike Franco and Mike Pearson
From:  Tom Storms (69) ~

Mr. Franco,
You judge an entire forum by one person's response. 
 That's like labeling the Sandstorm as a sports site
 because you only read Phil Jones' contributions.  No
 offense Phil.  Don't bow out, you have too much to
 offer in these discussions.

Mr. Pearson Can you explain it to Mr. Allen in lay
 terms.  I'm sure he didn't get it. 

              Tom Storms-Class of 69


Subj:     LIBERAL WHINE (Ouch....Ouch Ouch!!)
From:     John M. Allen  (66)

All you Bomber sports fans, particularly those
 aficionados of the National Basketball Association, will
 probably remember Bill Laimbeer, the infamous center
 for the Detroit Pistons who played in the 1980s and
 early '90s.   Laimbeer's infamy came in large part, due
 to his much chronicled ability to make it appear that
 the man he was guarding, OR the one who was
 guarding him, had committed a foul upon his
 completely innocent person.  Refined basketball fans
 would frequently watch a Pistons game, focusing not
 on the ball, but rather on Laimbeer, to marvel as game
 after game, he raised this technique to a true art form.  
 It became known in NBA parlance as the "flop."   The
 "flop"  was all the more effective because Laimbeer
 was a great shooter and he scored a large percentage
 of his points at the foul line, isolated in the
 spotlight/TV camera and unencumbered by annoying
 hands in his face. In addition to his ability to fake being
 fouled, he was equally unsurpassed at surreptitiously
 throwing elbows and hips, thereby causing his
 opponents a maximum of physical pain.   The guy was
 very simply THE master at what he did, and except at
 The Palace in Auburn Hills (where the Pistons play),
 Laimbeer was roundly booed at every arena in the

Now, I have no idea whether or not he was/is a
 Democrat, but in '89 & '90 when he was helping the
 Pistons to two NBA World Championships, Bill
 Laimbeer was certainly better know throughout the
 land than was Bill Clinton.   I make this point only as
 likely evidence that IF either one learned from the
 other, it was probably Clinton who learned from
 Laimbeer.  Certainly no one can dispute that with or
 without consulting Laimbeer, Clinton transported the
 "flop" into the political arena and has carried it to even
 greater heights.  As examples, I offer you the "Vast
 Right-Wing Conspiracy" which he somehow
 snookered the wife he repeatedly humiliates, into
 proclaiming, and "The Politics of Personal
 Destruction" which he submitted to the nation (in lieu
 of his official AND criminal behavior) as explanation
 for his impeachment by the House of Representatives.  
 But the comparison goes even further.   Just as
 Laimbeer subtly directed hips and elbows at basketball
 opponents, Clinton has been unequaled in going after
 political opponents, employing James "Corporal
 Cueball" Carville and Sid "Vicious" Blumenthal as his
 political Hatchet Men-in-Chief.   Recipients of their
 attentions have been Paula ("Trailer Trash") Jones to
 whom Clinton paid $800,000 as settlement in a civil
 lawsuit, and Monica Lewinsky who was in the
 process of being nationally trashed as a "nut case" until
 Jacky Judd of ABC News gave Clinton pause by
 reporting on "The Stain."  Through his henchmen,
 Clinton even attempted to malign the military record
 (can you believe it, the MILITARY record) of a
 Congressman from his own party who dared to
 criticize Clinton's concept of "telling the truth."  As
 with Lewinsky, some fast backpedalling was required
 when the Congressman's record, unlike Clinton
 himself, proved to be unimpeachable.   Of course
 these were only small fry compared with Ken Starr and
 Linda Tripp who received almost hourly attention
 throughout the media for over a year.

I could bore you with MANY more examples of this
 analogy, but my point is, that after 6+ years of the
 "Man from Hope," an alarming number of otherwise
 normal Democrats have begun to reflexively ape the
 "flop" technique of their fearless leader.   If anyone
 dares to disagree with their political point of view or
 their logic, or even worse, has the unmitigated gaul to
 point out actual DETAILS of the disagreement or
 flawed logic, then that person is immediately accused
 of attacking  them personally.   If someone has the
 impertinence to express disgust or revulsion at the
 behavior of the president they helped elect, then that
 is immediately labeled as "hate."   Disagreement, and
 pointing out actual details of disagreement, are NOT
 synonymous with personal attack or hate.   As a more
 specific example of this behavior, in issue #39 of
 the "Sandbox," liberal Mike Franco first invoked the
 knowledge and experience of his 13 year-old daughter
 to "attack" the comments I had made in a previous
 issue.   When I then suggested that his daughter
 might not be the sole clearing house for all teenage
 knowledge and experience, he "flopped" and cried foul
 that I was somehow attacking his daughter (who, from
 my limited observation, is a truly wonderful girl).   It
 makes one wonder if there is no cheap shot (elbow)
 that a good liberal won't take (throw).   ANY time a
 racial, religious, ethnic, sexual or unsubstantiated
 personal epithet is flung your way (let's say, just for
 example, "hate monger"), then you liberals have every
 right to cry foul.   However, when in the course of a
 debate you find yourselves flush with emotion but
 fresh out of logic, certain of you need to be grown up
 enough to admit it instead of "flopping" and then
 running home with your ball.

---John Allen ('66)


From:      Thomas C. Hann (61) ~

Now I sit me down in school
Where praying is against the rule.
For this great nation under God
Finds mention of Him very odd.

If Scripture now the class recites
It violates the Bill of Rights.
Anytime my head I bow
Becomes a federal matter now.

The law is specific; the law is precise.
Praying out loud is no longer nice.
Praying aloud in a public hall
Upsets those who believe
  in nothing at all.

In silence alone we can meditate
and if God should get the credit--great!
They are bringing their guns,
I don't dare bring my Bible,
To do so might make me liable.

So, now Oh Lord, this plea I make;
Should I be shot in school,
My soul please take. Amen.

This was found on the web and sent to me by a friend.
I sure thank GOD for being raised in Richland and for
the times I was raised in. What a sad commentary this
Prayer is for the times now. The problems now are
so complex that there is no one single answer. The
solutions are complex and need to be interwoven in all
our lives in the times now. With GOD'S help we must
prevail in these times and our continued daily prayers
must be interwoven into our daily lives and those lives
that we touch. These are exciting times now and I for
one do not wish to go back to the times that I was
raised in. I look forward to every issue of The Sandbox
and the memories that come with reading it. God Bless
you all. <    Tom Hann, class of '61

PS. Appreciate any e-mails from those I knew in
     Columbia Hi; Carmichael; Marcus Whitman
                      — Class of 61 --


From:   Ralph Myrick (51) ~

[Note: this appeared in an earlier SANDBOX, but we
 will run it again for any who may have missed it.  The
 entry following this one gives us the answer. -ap]

Since the following has to do with political opinion, 
I decided to put it here.

This is funny.  Try this.  It worked for me.  Here is 
proof that either Bill Gates has a sense of humor or 
that he is part of that right wing conspiracy Hillary 
keeps talking about.

1)  Open a new Microsoft Word document.
2)  Type the phrase, I'd like Bill Clinton to resign.
3)  Highlight this phrase as if you we're going to check
for spelling.
4)  Select:  Tools - Language - Thesaurus


Subj:   What It Says---
From:   John Adkins (62) ~

You all asked what happens with MSWord if you check
 the Thesaurus against a phrase something like "I Wish
 Bill Clinton would resign" - well it says "I'll drink to

John Adkins "62"


From:   Tom Hann (61)  ~

Have noticed that our writing skills have not improved
 since English class in Columbia Hi. I offer some rules
 for our consideration when sending in articles to the

1. Verbs HAS to agree with their subjects.
2. Prepositions are not words to end sentences with.
3. And don't start a sentence with a conjunction.
4. It is wrong to ever split an infinitive.
5. Avoid clich_s like the plague. (They're old hat)
6. Also, always avoid annoying alliteration.
7. Be more or less specific.
8. Parenthetical remarks (however relevant) are
 (usually) unnecessary.
9. Also too, never, ever use repetitive redundancies.
10. No sentence fragments.
11. Contractions aren't necessary and shouldn't be used.
12. Foreign words and phrases are not apropos.
13. Do not be redundant; do not use more words than
 necessary; it's highly superfluous.
14. One should NEVER generalize.
15. Comparisons are as bad as cliches.
16. Don't use no double negatives.
17. Eschew ampersands & abbreviations, etc.
18. One-word sentences? Eliminate.
19. Analogies in writing are like feathers on a snake.
20. The passive voice is to be ignored.
21. Eliminate commas, that are, not necessary.
 Parenthetical words however should be enclosed in
22. Never use a big word when a diminutive one would
23. Kill all exclamation points!!!
24. Use words correctly, irregardless of how others use
25. Understatement is always the absolute best way to
 put forth earth shaking ideas.
26. Use the apostrophe in it's proper place and omit it
 when its not needed.
27. Eliminate quotations. As Ralph Waldo Emerson
 said, "I hate quotations. Tell me what you know."
28. If you've heard it once, you've heard it a thousand
 times: Resist hyperbole; not one writer in a million can
 use it correctly.
29. Puns are for children, not groan readers.
30. Go around the barn at high noon to avoid
31. Even IF a mixed metaphor sings, it should be
32. Who needs rhetorical questions?
33. Exaggeration is a billion times worse than
      ..........NOT .


                 Tom Hann  Class of 1961


Subj:   Congress - who's doing what
From:   Vernon Blanchette (64)  ~
You may wish to bookmark this site -- it carries the
 records of some of the subjects under debate in
 Congress, and who's doing what.  (For example, John
 McCain's amendment to let cable companies
 keep raising rates.)

Subj:   Re: VIRUS ALERT from The SANDBOX
From:   Vera Smith Robbins (58)  ~

Thanks for the warning.  I hate it when you can't just
 get online and enjoy yourself.  You always have to be
 watching for crazies.


From:   Mike Pearson (74)  ~
Subj: Response to Vernon Blanchette (64)'s posts 
                (& various good posts)
Schoolkids today are like we need of a Good
 Education.   My opinion was fresh and fun when I 
 wrote it... & maybe you can revive the poor thing by 
 smart reading.

I like the combination of Bible and military quotations
 you sent and I remember they flourish within the Prime
 Directive   --  the U.S. Constitution and Amendments,
 including the Bill of Rights.  They're great for
 thoughtful reading! I believe, based on history,  they
 protect freedom of religion better even than religion
 itself does.  Why do we fly only the flags 100 feet
 high?  We could post 100 foot-tall copies of the
 Constitution and Amendments -- the product of
 centuries of management research and experience!

You wrote  "There are roots of this  . . . inside each of
 us..." (we agree!) and quoted General Powell on
 leadership  -- (excerpt):
 "...blindly following a particular fad generates 
 rigidity in thought and action . . .  management 
 techniques are not magic mantras but simply tools 
 to be reached for at the right times." (Lesson 11)

 These are true and grand except with respect to the 
 U.S.  Constitution and its Amendments  . . . which
 protect freedom of management better than  
management itself does,  by providing peaceful
 transfers of power and protecting people with rights in
 any process.  Alternative systems produce much more
 turbulent  and quixotic power struggles (in which they
 lose sight of the original intent of obtaining the reins of

 Kids today are deprived of learning the wonders
 inherent in Constitutional law.   The teachers could
 read aloud  to high school students (with a theatric
 air?) a fair sampling of law cases and their resolution
 and they'd be better served than being kept in the dark
 about the true basis of modern civilization. Any lesson
 plan can be made interesting, and this lesson plan
 deserves more attention than  it's getting. If school 
 kids knew their rights and learned the true dimensions
 of them, wouldn't  they be inclined to practice those
 freedoms with more self-respect and respect for the
 welfare of others? 

 We  could show films like _The People vs. Larry
 Flynt_ in upper high school and it would help!!... 
 Why?  Well, have you seen that film?  The U.S.
 Supreme Court and other courts are well portrayed. 
 Unfortunately, as in real life, Larry Flynt is shot and
 paralyzed, and his wife dies tragically from drug abuse.  
You quoted Isaiah 55:
"For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are
 your ways My ways, says the Lord."

 With the exception of  (__________ (fill in the blank)
 no human is allowed an exception or "Lordship" status
 by the U.S. Constitution whether they be  a priest or
 priestess,  minister, rabbi, mullah, swami or other
 "spokesperson" for the Lord.  They must manage with
 freedom of religion speech, assembly, press,  trade etc.
 without violating or usurping the rights of others
 granted by the U.S. Constitution.  I hope you agree...
 it's consistent with what you were saying.
                       Mike Pearson  (74)

Science  does not consist of proving things true but in
 testing and criticizing them. -- Karl Popper 


Subj:    Spike Lee, CBS News Anchor
From:   Mike Pearson (74)  ~

Free press used to mean some abuse. Readers might be
 swayed by false info or purple prose or sensational
 headlines.  But at least there was a "press."    With TV
 and radio, there is only the seductive voice in our ear
 and the handsome talking head to deliver a party line.
 How much analysis occurs with 15 stories of 100
 words each?  A lot!  They're manipulatin' the heck out
 of us, or tryin',  with neurolinguistic programming,
 clever wording, color tampering, and subliminal visual
 undertones behind the words.  These folks average
 four years of college, mostly in journalism.  What is a
 journal?  Just whatever they write in it. The movie
 about Malcolm X was kinda inspiring, but I never like
 the Leninist quote on the movie't tee shirt -- "by any
 means necessary."

With a press, they had to gather information
and publish tens of thousands of words daily 
that could be clipped by anyone's Granny for
 future criticism.  

With TV and radio, they seem to have no limits
and no accountability -- and they're never 
sorry if they get it wrong.  Am I a critic?
Just being their detractor  -- does that make
me a critic?  

 It looks like TV and radio news' motto is
 "We spy and pry and if necessary,  lie, to
  get out the gossip as quickly as we hear it...
 or whatever it is we're trying to accomplish."

And if you think they're muddled, wait'll ya
see how they handle rejection!  Tell a millionaire
anchor he's  a no-good lazy dumb gossipin' 
interloper and he'll really turn red.

  Thanks for the forum...I'm Mr. Popular.

                Mike Pearson (74)


That's it for this issue of The SANDBOX, folks.  Thanks
to all of the contributors for sharing their thoughts with
all of us.

 John Fitzgerald Kennedy paraphrased John Greenleaf
 Whittier when he said: "My fellow citizens of the world: 
 ask not what America will do for you, but what together 
 we can do for the freedom of man."

And I might suggest along that line, "Ask not what the
 SANDBOX can do for you, but what together we can
 do to make The SANDBOX  the truly fine forum that 
 ALL OF US would like it to be.

Thank you for your support!

--Al Parker

  "Education is what survives when what has been
 learnt has been forgotten."
              B.F. Skinner 1904 -

  Think about it.  Talk about it.  Send us your stuff.