The SANDBOX 
                Issue #71 - July 10 - 2000
 
  "Some people drink at the fountain of knowledge.
                Others just gargle." - anon.

Look who's Talking Today!

       "Yes, keep the Hanford Reach as pristine as
 possible; just remember to wear your dosimeters
 when you frolic on the banks and swim in the
 water."

          - Bob Carlson, aka Mike Clowes (54)

        "Elitists are big world thinkers and just
 naturally gravitate to big projects, big government
 … and … big failures. More money and more time
 is always their plea for eventual success."

                         - Dick Epler `52

        "If the rest of this country has to live like
 the poor people of Texas, everybody will be dead
 broke."

                     - Paul W. Ratsch `58

                                     -

           The SANDBOX, Issue #71 Salutes:

                       The Class of 1971!

Go take a look at their Home Page which features:
Classmates * 25th Reunion Pictures * Grade School
Pictures * High School Pictures * The Year 1971 *  
Go there, even if that's not your class.  It's well 
worth the trip!

To get there, go to: All-Bomber-Links-
    http://www.bigfoot.com/~RichlandBombers  
    And click on the year, 1971.  
 
                               -

Subj:   Preserve The Reach - Keep The Dams
From:   Bob Carlson (aka) "Mike Clowes") `54
bobs@proaxis.com (Robert Carlson)

Of late, the press, both real and cyber, have been
 going on about the Hanford Reach in conjunction
 with dismantling the dams on both the Snake
 and Columbia Rivers.  I, for one think keeping the
 Hanford Reach as it is, maybe making it a federal
 preserve, is probably a good thing.  The
 dismantling of the dams, on the other hand, isn't.

Hold on, fish lovers, hear me out.  I was not in
 Richland during the flood of `48; I was instead a
 twelve-year old kid in Centralia, WA, helping to
 sandbag a few places near my home on the
 Skookumchuck River.  Our flood that year wasn't
 as big as the one that rambled down the Columbia
 past Portland, OR, where it is known as the
 "Vanport Flood."

If memory serves, there was only one dam between
 Portland and Richland, Bonneville.  Quite possibly
 because of the flood there are now seven dams
 on the Columbia between Bonneville and Grand
 Coulee.  What flooding there has been since the
 completion of the new dams has been considerably
 lower.  Granted, the salmon and steelhead runs
 have been lessened, but part of that lessening has
 been man's greed and stupidity.

Just recently some overly intelligent individual in
 the Oregon Fish and Game Department issued a
 decree that all hatchery born salmon were to be
 killed because they were doing something evil to 
 natural salmon.  Rather amazing conclusion, since
 for years both Oregon and Washington along with
 the federal government have been stocking the
 river with hatchery born salmon in order to
 supplement the dwindling native born fish.  Now
 hatchery fish are evil incarnate.  They disrupt the
 food chain.  They also probably seduce young
 salmon into joining them rather than going all the
 way back upstream. This is off the point.

Most of the dams on the river are necessary for
 economic reasons.  They supply electric power;
 they provide irrigation water; and they reduce
 flooding.  If you don't think the latter is an
 economic reason, just ask some insurance
 company about flood insurance and the cost
 thereof without the dams.  Just ask those people
 who lost their homes during some of the almost
 epic floods of the Columbia, and the epic floods of
 the thirties in the Midwest.

It would have been nice not to have dammed the
 Columbia and the Snake.  It would have been nice
 to let the salmon find their way up into Canada and
 Montana.  It would be nice to be paying 10 to 15
 times what we are now paying for electricity. 
 There would probably be a large suction pump
 somewhere on the river taking water to Los
 Angeles.

Now that we have the technology, perhaps
 something can be done to bring some form of
 salmon to the upper reaches of the Columbia. 
 Maybe a better fish ladder can be built at each of
 the other dams.  Maybe a fish elevator can be built
 at Grand Coulee.

You naysayers out there, put your minds to that
 sort of thinking.  Invent a way we can have our
 cake and eat it too.  And, before you swing the
 sledgehammer to knock down the first dam take a
 long hard look at it's functions.  If you don't live
 in the area, and cannot sympathize with people
 who annually get flooded out, try before you
 speak.

Yes, keep the Hanford Reach as pristine as
 possible; just remember to wear your dosimeters
 when you frolic on the banks and swim in the
 water.


        - Bob Carlson (aka) "Mike Clowes") `54

                                    -

Subj:   Bad Behavior
From:   Dick Epler (52)
depler@ortelco.net (Dick Epler)

For Bob Carlson (54) and Anna Durbin (69)

Many thanks for your comments. I needed that!
 Really!  Communication is hard. To keep things to
 a reasonable length, it is necessary to depend on
 common knowledge, and so, for this audience, I
 don't always explain things as well as I should.
 Nevertheless, Anna, you should know I share your
 sentiments when you write: "Keep up the good
 work, Marc (and Mike) Franco." A balanced
 dialog is necessary for effective communication.
 So maybe I ought to take the time to explain
 myself a little better.

When I say that Bill Clinton's legacy will be to
 legitimatize bad behavior I don't mean to suggest
 he is personally responsible for all the bad behavior
 in the nation. You're quite right; the citizenry are
 ultimately responsible, but it all seems to have
 accelerated on Clinton's watch. The reason, it
 seems, is that Bill, as President, has greatly
 weakened the institutions (church, school, and
 parents) that have traditionally set limits to bad
 behavior (especially for our children). And, of
 course, Bill's example as a National roll-model
 doesn't help. Bill seems quite content to let the
 entertainment industry set the limits of bad
 behavior, and indeed, he often encourages pushing
 the limits. Both parties seem to significantly benefit
 by this arrangement.

Regarding Bill's personal behavior, I'm not
 particularly concerned about the sexual nature of
 the Monica affair. With Bill Clinton, it's always
 political, and it's never "just about sex." Two
 things: First, I'm fascinated by Bill's use of power
 to acquire sex with the support of the feminists.
 It's funny … the feminists have a name Bill's
 behavior: he's a classic "sexual predator." But "the
 Hillary defense" was used to effectively mitigate
 that charge. In the parlance of the feminists, then,
 Hillary is a classic "enabler." However, if most
 feminists are forgiving of such abhorrent behavior,
 it has to be because Bill and Hillary are powerful
 people who are sympathetic to the "cause"
 irrespective of personal behavior. This is
 marvelous politics, and I'm a little disappointed it
 works so well. As a feminist acquaintance of mine
 said: "they may be SOBs, but at least they're our
 SOBs." How's that for hypocrisy!
 
Second, Bill's response to being caught was not
 only the aggressive "wag your finger" TV telecast
 to the nation but included incontrovertible
 obstruction of justice and perjury before a court of
 law … both felonious acts of the worst kind. Few
 legal scholars argue with these facts. As an
 American, it galls me to think we have an
 unindicted felon occupying the White House as our
 President.
 
But I digress. The subject for this contribution is
 bad behavior, so let me offer a definition. To me,
 bad behavior is anything that doesn't promote and
 strengthen personal relationships and/or is
 demeaning to trusted colleagues. For the benefit of
 Bill Clinton, I extend this definition to include bad
 sex whether homo or heterosexual. Again, it's not
 the homo/hetero label that's important; it's the
 behavior. Good sex of whatever variety must
 strengthen a relationship OR it is bad sex by
 definition. By this definition, there's no such thing
 as good sex outside of meaningful relationships.
 One way or another the predator eventually pays. I
 would argue that the Ten Commandments, our
 Constitution, and most law were originally crafted
 to promote dependable relationships (good
 behavior). Bill, however, continually seeks
 legislation and policies based on labels (hate
 crimes, sexual preference, minorities, etc.). Bad
 idea. Legislation based on labels is a big source of
 mischief as it tends to drive people crazy. To be
 effective, legislation generally needs to be
 restricted to the behavior you wish to reward or
 punish regardless of race, sex or creed.

Now to the specifics. You implied, Bob, that Bill
 wouldn't have been caught if the "right wingers"
 weren't out to get him as retribution for Nixon's
 treatment by the "liberal left." Actually, Bob,
 nothing could be further from the truth. Two
 things: First, Nixon was forced to resign primarily
 because key Republicans refused their support in
 defense of the Democrat's impeachment effort.
 The prevalent consensus, with hindsight, is that is
 that with unified Republican support, the
 Democrat's impeachment effort would have died in
 the House. Unlike Clinton, there were no real
 grounds for the Nixon impeachment. In the end
 conservative Republicans simply wouldn't tolerate
 bad behavior. At the time of Clinton's
 impeachment, Bob, you may recall that many in the
 media were looking for key democrats to make a
 similar "trip to the White House" to encourage
 resignation … but it didn't happen and Hillary's
 support was key.
 
Second, most legal scholars now believe the
 Monica affair would never have gone public if Bill
 would have settled early with Paula Jones. It was
 the Paula Jones legal team that exposed the
 Monica affair, along with a host of other sexual
 indiscretions. But that's always the way with
 sexual predators; sooner or later they pick on the
 wrong woman and, having had considerable
 success at intimidation, they see no reason to back
 down. My personal feeling, however, is that if it
 hadn't been Paula, it would have been someone
 else. Interestingly, it seems Bill never worried
 much about being "caught." And neither, it would
 seem, did Hillary. These guys are both into power
 and have a unique and beneficial relationship. For
 Bill, sex was part of the power equation, a perk of
 the office if you will. For Hillary, it was the chance
 to be a surrogate President as a condition of
 support. Few business partnerships have as much
 synergy.

Anna, you seem interested in hypocrisy. Question:
 What is the essential nature of hypocrisy? Is it
 hypocrisy to simply be caught doing something
 you've previously acknowledged is wrong? Well,
 maybe not. Behaviorists tell us that with the
 admission of wrongdoing, there's no hypocrisy
 since there's no inconsistency between what you
 say and how you view your actions. Of course, this
 is what we teach our children at the same time we
 teach them the difference between right and
 wrong. To the extent children learn this essential
 lesson they will eventually "grow up." What
 Gingrich and Livingston did may have been stupid
 (as adults, they knew better) but it wasn't
 hypocrisy; they admitted wrongdoing and resigned.
 No inconsistency there. Again, conservative
 Republicans don't tend to tolerate bad behavior,
 even in themselves.

By this definition, of course, Bill can't be called a
 hypocrite, as he has never acknowledged a moral
 right and wrong; as such, Bill's behavior is
 consistent with what he preaches. And therein lies
 the problem. For Bill to maintain his power, he
 must necessarily legitimize bad behavior wherever
 he can while corrupting as many of his supporters
 as possible (turning many good democrats into
 hypocrites). It's been an insidious process and will,
 I suspect, be the subject of a doctoral thesis one
 day. But the results are indisputable: as a nation,
 our culture has changed greatly during the reign of
 Bill Clinton.
 
Just two more things. Anna has chastised me for
 not listing a verifiable social scientist to back up
 my statement that conservative/authoritarian
 personalities are "hated" by those who were
 previously persecuted for bad behavior of a sexual
 or violent nature. Well, if this were a recent
 observation, I would agree a reference would be in
 order. But this is a point of view that has been
 accepted for the last 30 to 40 years (at least since
 Dr. Spock) to the point it is a reoccurring theme in
 TV, movies and books. A lot of money has been
 made promoting this theme and its many
 ramifications. Aside from the content of our
 youth's music, consider the AntiBabe,
 Body-Attitude clothing line by Jodi. Any of Mary
 Gaitskill's books (e.g. Bad Behavior) that are
 analyzed ad-nausium in various college curricula.
 And then there's the more recent somewhat
 scholarly treatise "Bad Men Do What Good Men
 Dream," by Dr. Robert I. Simon. The references,
 Anna, are too many to list.
 
Anna, you also seem troubled by my use of the
 elitist word. I assure you, simply going to Yale
 does not make one an elitist. Staying at Yale
 maybe, but then again maybe not. Though elitists
 are often characterized as professional students
 who have never had a job outside government,
 their distinguishing characteristic is that they've all
 found truth and have, amazingly, discovered the
 universal key to success, or perhaps to the perfect
 world. Elitists are big world thinkers and just
 naturally gravitate to big projects, big government
 … and … big failures. More money and more time
 is always their plea for eventual success.
 MacNamara (Vietnam War), Hillary (Universal
 Health Coverage), Bill Clinton (One World
 Government), and Karl Marx (Communism) are
 typical elitists. Elitists are famous for complicating
 the obvious and Will Rogers and Ronald Reagan
 both became quite famous at their expense. If there
 were any elitists in Reagan's administration, it was
 a well kept secret, and rightly so, as they would
 have been quickly ostracized by their brethren.
 Elitists like to be judged by their credentials and
 not by their failures; non-elitists, on the other hand,
 like to be judged by what they've accomplished
 and by their successes (they also have failures, but
 they tend to be fewer and smaller). By this
 definition, George H. may have been a Yale elitist,
 but his son George W. is most decidedly not.
 Typically, elitists "hate" GW almost as much as
 they "hated" Reagan (a good sign, actually). Note
 the quotation marks, Anna. Here, I am using the
 "hate" word to elicit an emotional response in the
 manner of modern political spin-doctors. It's a
 practice I abhor and something I avoid except to
 make a point … which you seem to have missed in
 my last contribution. 

                      - Dick Epler (52)

                                  -

Subj:   Clinton
From:   Paul Ratsch `58
pratsch@hotmail.com

Since Clinton has been in office has been some of
 the best years of life.  It will not continue if [Bush]
 gets in.  He has to take California to get elected.
 He never will. Californians are to smart to believe
 in him.  If the rest of this country has to live like
 the poor people of Texas, everybody will be dead
 broke.
                   - Paul w. ratsch `58
                   Des moines, Wa.
                   [Mariners forever]

                                -

That's it for this issue, folks.  Lot's more is on the
.way.  Keep it coming!

                     - Al Parker (53)

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                               - 71 -