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Motto: The surest way to get a reputation for being a trouble maker these days is to go about repeating the very phrases that the Founders used in the struggle for independance.

-- C.A. Beard


Steve Langer
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On last month's Fix;

the answer to last month's Fix,

"How should we resolve competing interests over managment of national

Jeff Thorne's letter actually touches on the solution, but instead of democracy, I'd prefer capitalism, and instead of the Nature Conservancy voting for the undecided, I'd suggest they just buy the National Parks and administer them as they see fit. The problem with Federal ownership of the National Parks is that A) the management and budgets of the parks are up to the vagaries of every election and B) the special interests of constituents near the parks are usually so devisive as to drive the oscillating elections mentioned in A.

Far better to have privately funded groups, with an unambiguous charter, buy up the Federal lands and administer them with the kind of steady leadership that need not bow to public pressure every 2 years.

On the Rep. Convention;

Well, now that Dole has federal money for his campaign, we can expect a heat up. His acceptance speech was pretty good; made the party sound inclusive and tolerant, yet made the case that there are some points that one should not give in on (like honor, lower taxes and maintaining control over the US armed forces rather than placing them under the UN). I still beleive that Dole will crater himself by showing his temper in a debate with Clinton, but perhpas he is becoming more polished. At least in his acceptance speech he was referring to himself as "I" rather than his annoying tendency to use the 3'rd person.

Guest Editorial:


by Steve Langer

Despite all my efforts, I was unable to secure a position in the Midwest that would make use of any of my formal training. However, as promised in a previous issue, I predicted that by the end of August my future disposition would get defined, and so it has.

Beginning Oct. 1, I will be Asst. Prof. of Radiological Physics at the University of Washington - Seattle. The position also carries co-appointments in the Computer Science and Bioengineering departments, but oddly enough not in physics.

The University itself is interesting in several respects. The core of campus has many beautiful older buildings and must have once had magnificent views of Ranier and the Cascade Mountains. However, as oft happens in municipally located campi, space is limited and views and gardens are getting sacrificed for new construction. Yet, even that must have proved insufficient, as the U seems to be annexing areas of town to the West of campus, and is converting them to Univ. use. To a new visitor, this can be disorienting as financial aid, counseling and other academic functions are housed in decidedly non-academic looking buildings (like homes and storefronts). Abandoned high-rise apartment buildings are also present in a cordoned off area and give the west part of campus a Cabrini-Green feel.

The area around Seattle itself has also been a victim of its own success. Like Madison-Wisconsin, Seattle is an isthmus. Running North-South, it's bounded on the west by Pudget Sound and on the east by Lake Washington. The entire isthmus is a continuous rolling suburb, with strip malls every few blocks. One does not begin to see open land (or parish the thought - farms), until one goes East 25 miles to the Casade Mtn. town of Issaquah or South 30 miles near Tacoma.

Newer developments on the East shore of L. Washington such as Belleville and Redmond (home of his most holy Bill) have "benefitted" from a more orderly approach to urban and regional planning than has the older Seattle, but that simply translates into more county highways lined with sub-divisions.

Lest I sound too dreary before I even get there, let me say that the job itself promises to be very stimulating and I'll be working with top notch people. And for city dwellers who thrive in a hustling, cosmopolitan environment, Seattle certainly has distinctions that would fill many New Yorkers and Toronto natives with envy. I only wish that I could locate a home in a rural environment, with my own bit of woods and maybe a pond, without having to look at a 30-40 mile commute. We shall see.

In any case, the Sept. issue of the Rochester Rag will be the last to carry that name. Henceforth, this periodical will be named;

SeaViews: Insights from the Gray Havens


1. From Jeff;

>From Wed Aug 21 14:44:08 1996 Hi, > "What is the best way to manage competing interests for the > national parks?" For once, you pose a question with an obvious answer. I propose democracy as an answer. The first step is to define an area for each national park that includes the park and adjacent lands that may be affected by park management. Only individuals residing in these well-defined areas should have a vote. The second step is to determine which individuals from each area are allowed to vote. I believe in the 1 vote per individual principle and suggest following it. The 1 vote per individual principle presents an obvious problem. It is: what to do with the votes of individuals who cannot express themselves or their desires clearly? There are, of course, many species where no individual can express itself clearly. In fact, it could be strongly argued that, with the exception of most dogs and some humans, no individuals can clearly express their opinions. This problem of inability to express one's interests can be solved easily. All that we need to do is let some responsible environmental organization (e.g., The Nature Conservancy) cast the votes of organisms whose interests it represents. Some might say that my system is unfair because it apportions the bacteria too many votes. I disagree because many bacteria are clones. But, I am forced to admit that I can't easily solve the problem of counting the number of clones. Maybe I will try next month if your question for the next issue involves comparing and contrasting the meaning of "clone" and "individual." hope all is well, Jeff

Quotes(s) of the month:

"Bill Clinton has done for foreign policy what Hillary has done for health care."

--Former Secy. of State Jim Baker at the Republican convention.

Fix of the month:



1. Rochester, Aug. 6: Secy. of Health and Human Services Donna Schalala was in town today stumping for the reelection of Dem. Sen. Paul Wellstone. While here, she was shown the Mayo teleradiology system which enables Dr.'s here to view X-rays from remote sites. No doubt she will report back to CLinton on the obvious implications for centralized medicine.

2. Aug. 13: The business journal Kiplinger's just declared Rochester to be the healthiest large city in the country. It also mentioned that the crime rate is among the lowest for large cities, and health care costs are 3% below the national average. Said the article, "The most likely way to get hurt is to trip over a surgeon."


1. Royal Oak, Aug. 6: Dr. Jack Kavorkian scored his 34'th assisted suicide today, while the DA that had attempted to prosecute him three times was defeated in Michigan's primary.

2. Royal Oak, Aug. 25: Well Jack has been a busy lad. This week he's offed three ladies (bringing his count up to a very respectable 37), but he admits that one may have been a mistake. It seems that her autopsy revealed no terminal illness, she suffered from depression, and her husband abused her and may have coerced her into the suicide. But, hey, don't blame Jack. It's the compassionate thing to do.

3. E. Lansing, Aug 27: While on his whistle stop campaign tour, Clinton called for Congress to reconsider the ban on "cop killer" bullets. Well, considering that Teflon coated bullets are only sold to Federal Firearms License holders and are not sold in retail stores, one may be tempted to ask how big a problem they actually are. Clinton went on to say that he was a hunter, but had yet to see a deer wearing a Kevlar vest, and that, "Cop killer bullets have no legitimate sporting purpose."

Ed: Funny, I thought the 2'nd was about being armed in the manner of a contemporary infantry man. Where in the Bill of Rights does it say that,

A well fed and complacent proletariot, being necessary for the security of tyrants, the right of the proletariot to hunt bunnies with antiquated weapons and watch mind numbing television shall not be infringed.


1. Aug 15: A convicted male juvenile offender could have been spared jail time if his parents would have paid the $1200 fine. However, they elected to let Jr. spend time in jail. While there, he racked up $1400 in 900 phone calls. The parents will have to pay that instead.

2. Aug. 26, Chicago: The Dem. convention kicked off last night. Among the speakers, a police officer who was shot 11 times and is now a staunch gun control supporter (no one seemed to ask the obvious question, namely, did the criminal who shot him do so with a "legally" obtained gun). Jim and Sara Brady also spoke, and claimed that their "Brady Bill" will eventually reduce the estimated 40,000 nation wide gun deaths each year. Once again, no one bothered to mention the report which came out 2 weeks ago from the Univ. of Chicago (a whole two miles from the convention center), which demonstrated that in 3500 counties over 15 years, those which allowed concealed weapons all experienced reductions in violent crime.

3. Aug. 26, Chicago: In a strange role reversal, the speakers at the Dem convention said that their party is open to Pro-Life democrats, an obvious rebuttal to the statement at the Rep convention that the Rep. party is open enough to accept Pro-Choice Reps. What is interesting to consider though, is why the Dems. felt it necessary to state this in their party platform.


1. Redmond, Aug 28: Our Lord and Savior, Bill Gates, has pronounced today that within the next 10 YEARS (get this) computers will actually be able to recognize human speech and speak with their own voice. Ok I know. This is just too incredible to believe right? Like who whould believe that is possible. Certainly not OS/2 Warp users who have had IBM Voice Type bundled with their operating system for the last year. Nor Mac users with Speech Manager, or the Windows and Mac users who have had Kurzweil Voice or Dragon Dictate for the past four years. And certainly not those poor dumb Amiga owners who've used their computers to read their email since 1985. No. To have something this incredible, awe inspiring and INVENTIVE, it could only come from the fertile mind of Gates.


1. Boston, Aug 27: A forty something high school algebra teacher, who says he can no longer live a lie, has openly admitted that he is a transexual and now reports to work while cross dressed. The school administrator admits that the biggest problem he has is deciding what restroom to send Dave/Diane to.

Wash. D.C.

1. Aug. 22: Signaling a historic shift in policy, Clinton has redefined tobacco as an addictive drug, clearing the way for FDA head David "we shall ban all tobacco products" Kessler to start controlling the substance. Both Clinton and Kessler have pointed out that a key part of their plan will be to make it illegal for minors to purchase tobacco.

Ed: Soon, Clinton will probably also make it illegal for minors to have alcohol. What's that you say? It already IS illegal for minors to have alcohol? Oh. Well, than I guess Bill would not try to take credit for something that has already been done.

No doubt, when it becomes common knowledge that soft drink companies and chocalateers have been manipulating the caffeine content of their respective products, the FDA will step up to the plate and control that evil drug as well. Soon, we shall all require a prescription for our particular vices. This is all to the good and doubtless will lead to the temperate and peaceful times we enjoyed during Prohibition.

2. Aug. 16: FBI and DEA figures show an explosion of drug use among teens since 1992. Particularly alarming is the jump in heroine and LSD. Clinton correctly identified that the escalation began under the final year of the Bush Admin.

Ed: However, don't expect Clinton's new found ability to read a calander to limit his claiming credit for the economic growth since '92.

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