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On its demise today, Paul, formerly of Key West, now living near homestead, wrote:
To the Editor,
No more Solares Hill?
That means extreme damage to what little was left of “the real Key West”. Besides the Shrimp, the Shipwrecks and the record Marlin, there is (was) another side of Key West that you don’t seem to get.
You just put a terminal bullet in it, Skippy.
I still have a year on my Citizen subscription. I paid for two years, largely on the strength of Mark Howell once a week.
I.E.: Whatever he does… I don’t care what he does. Let’s just see what he does, next week.
Howell was something for moderately sentient Island people to anticipate, DEPENDABLY, each week. You just killed that for a lot of them, Editor.
The Citizen, clearly, does have other people who can write, but that does not make you Solares Hill. Perhaps, ever since Solares Hill was crammed into the back corner of the Citizen’s building, the handwriting has been on the wall.
Editor, it’s impossible for me to write further without expressing the most profound contempt for you , personally.
You don’t belong anywhere near Key West.
Have you ever been on Madison Avenue, Bubba? It might be right be right be right up your alley.
Excerpts from Solares Hill today, vaya con Dios, Editor Mark Howell, Nadja Hansen, and all whose blood, sweat, and tears brought us Solares Hill over the years…
This just in from John (‘Monty
Python’) Cleese: The English are
feeling the pinch in relation to
recent events in Syria and have
therefore raised their security
level from ‘Miffed’ to ‘Peeved.’
Soon, however, security levels
may be raised yet again to
‘Irritated’ or even ‘A Bit Cross.’
The English have not been
‘A Bit Cross’ since the blitz in
1940 when tea supplies nearly
ran out. Terrorists have been
re-categorized from ‘Tiresome’
to ‘A Bloody Nuisance.’ The
last time the British issued a
‘Bloody Nuisance’ warning level
was in 1588, when threatened by the Spanish Armada.
Is this Edward Snowden or is it not?
Why does the name of
Edward Snowden — particularly
with that “e” in the
last name — strike such
a chord in the American
Perhaps because the NSA
whistleblower has the same
last name (and spelling) as
the sacrificial lamb character
in the classic American
novel of the late 20th century,
Pay attention to the following
words from our
all-time favorite literary
columnist, Thomas Powers,
writing recently in The
London Review of Books
on Joseph Heller’s masterpiece:
“The description of
Snowden’s death is harrowing.
It arrives on page
436 after numerous glancing
mentions beginning as
early as page 48, all pointing
unmistakably to something
no man would wish to
“Dobbs, a character
aboard an American bomber,
later killed, urges his
friend and the book’s leading
man, Yossarian, to make
his way to the back of the
plane to help a wounded
man — ‘a vaguely familiar
kid.’ That’s it for the personal
history of Snowden.
The tail gunner has fainted
at the sight of the wounded
man, which revolts
Yossarian as well. ‘The
wound Yossarian saw was
in the outside of Snowden’s
thigh, as large and deep as a
“Yossarian goes to work
applying a tourniquet,
pouring white sulfanilamide
crystals into the
bloody hole, snipping away
clothing to get at the leg,
covering the wound with a
“‘I’m cold,’ Snowden says.
“‘There, there,’ says
“The fate of Snowden
requires almost five pages
to unfold fully. It’s what I
admired extravagantly in
my youth: a great piece
of writing, the sensations
and turns of mind each
described precisely in its
proper turn. The reader is
as focused on Snowden as
is Yossarian, looking cautiously,
just as Yossarian does. It’s
not somebody we know
and care about who is
undergoing this ordeal,
just a creature of flesh
and blood. At about the
moment Yossarian thinks
he has Snowden under
control and out of danger,
Snowden, ‘with just the
barest movement of his
chin,’ points down toward
his armpit. There Yossarian
notes a stain, oddly colored.
Things aren’t as he thought.
Snowden has sustained
another wound under his
flak suit. Yossarian rips back
the snaps of the flak suit.
The jacket opens suddenly:
‘Snowden’s insides slithered
down to the floor in a soggy
pile.’ Yossarian forces himself
to look. ‘Here was God’s
plenty, all right … liver,
lungs, kidneys, ribs, stomach
and bits of the stewed
tomatoes Snowden had
eaten that day for lunch.’
“This scene is the climax
of ‘Catch-22’ and what
Heller believed to be the
central insight of his life:
‘The grim secret Snowden
had spilled all over the
messy floor … Man was
matter, that was Snowden’s
“For Heller personally
this was the big thing: the
discovery that in the end,
for all of life’s ceaseless
wanting, thinking and feeling,
a person is only meat.
Heller is not the first writer
in the history of the world
to get the picture, but it hit
him harder than it does
most. The big thing is the
reason Heller did not go
to funerals. It is the reason
he did not want to think
about his wife Shirley dying
of cancer. It is the reason
‘Closing Time’ is the title
of the sequel to ‘Catch-22’
and the reason everybody
in the book is dying, especially
the character Lew
Rabinowitz, who takes 35
years to let cancer do to
him what German flak did
to Snowden in 20 minutes.
It is the reason Heller used
the same wisecrack over
and over: ‘I’m not planning
• • • • •
On Sept. 2, 1969, the
original “Star Trek” aired its
final episode after running
for only three years and
never placing better than
No. 52 in the ratings.
It later became a cult
classic in reruns, spawning
five additional television
series, 12 theatrical films,
and numerous books,
• • • • •
Quotes for the Week:
“Civil disobedience is not
our problem. Our problem
is civil obedience. Our
problem is that people have
obeyed the dictates of leaders
and millions have been
killed because of this obedience.
Our problem is that
people are obedient all over
the world in the face of poverty
and starvation and stupidity
and war and cruelty.
Our problem is that people
are obedient while our jails
are full of petty thieves and
the grand thieves are running
the country. That’s our
— Howard Zinn
“Solares Hill loves its readers.
We have always loved
our readers since our inception
in 1971. If we have to
go, it’s fitting that we go
mid-sentence — Bye!”
— Mark Howell, Editor,
Peggy Butler, formerly of Key West, now living in the Palm Beaches area of Florida, wrote:
Yes, Sloan, the news of Solares Hill’s folding after thirty years of enlightenment, just reached me last night. I am battling one of my worst cases of pneumonia right now and trying to stay as far from a hospital room as I possibly can, so I’m not going to write a lot, but it’s so sad to know those voices are suddenly stilled. Nadje Hansen just lost her husband and her house is under water, so I understand, Connie Gilbert is facing an uphill financial battle, and Mark Howell and Morrow, who knows what’s going to happen with them.
I just replied to an email from Joanna Schmida, another stilled voice, and asked why we weren’t all born in a peace-loving country rather than a war-mongering country that could give a care whether it’s senior citizens are struggling to keep their heads above water in these their final years on this earth, instead of continuing to drag out its big boy toys to destroy other countries. It looks like President Obama – even if he has to ride in on the back of one of his billion-dollar missiles – has become one of the biggest hawks ever and I have a feeling he’s just spitting in the face of the Tea Party by doing what he’s doing, even if he has to do it alone without the help of any other country in the world.
I wish all of you down there well in your efforts to keep Key West from widening that channel and keeping the larger ships far away from that island too small to accommodate them.
I wrote back:
Hi, Peggy – Sorry to hear of your pneumonia, I know it well.
If you can spring for it, go to a health food store and buy a small bottle of tincture of myrrh and, start taking 10 drops in a small glass of water 4-5 times daily. Shake the bottle of myrrh well before each use. Myrrh dramatically raises white cell count, which will help your body fight the infection. I would not use Myrrh over one week, it is potent but over-use can trigger immune system rejection forever. Also, get a garlic ball and mash up one garlic bulb and put in into small portion of boiling water for maybe 30 seconds, then turn off heat and let simmer 5 minutes, then drink that. Do that 4-5 times a day. Garlic kills all sorts of pathogens, including pneumonia bacteria. Do that for about a week, too, then discontinue. Also, drink heaps of water to hydrate body and lungs.
Given what the Chamber of Commerce’s physician expert just revealed about the kind of cruise ships calling on Key West now, for a long time, and for a long time to come, regardless of how the channel-widening “study” referendum goes, it sure looks to me that the mayor and city commissioners are impaled through their hindquarters with giant, shiny, sharp fishing hooks attached to heavy-duty fishing line, and they are, literally, hung out to dry in the wind, or to swim as shark bait, if they don’t pull their heads out of the sand, or their rear ends, and face reality – which is they are aiding and abetting the killing of the sea and the reef by letting Carnival and other sea ravaging cruises ships call on Key West. The entire KW citizenry should be up in arms about Dr. Lockwood’s revelation at the recent forum, hosted, ironically, by the Chamber and the Westin, which are having sex lots a times a week with sea- and reef-killing cruise ships, which is no news to the Chamber, the Westin, the mayor, the city commissioners, Reef Relief, Last Stand, Citizens for Concerned Tourism, the Citizen, the Keynoter, Key West the Newspaper, the Tourist Development Council, the Monroe County Commission, etc., all whom are in on it by active participation, or by active silence. It would be hilarious, if it weren’t so terrible.
Jerry Weinstock, M.D., Psychiatry (retired), of Key West area, replied to Christine Russell’s assessment of First Do No Harm Robin Lockwood, M.D., as reported in yesterday’s post at goodmorningkeywest.com:
Sloan: I totally agree with Christine: not one word that
Lockwood uttered is true —-sounds like the rant of a LUNATIC—-
I have seen, observed and treated many–he qualifies,
diagnostically. I will say this –the same ships go to
Alaska –they have treatment but not enforced here
enforced there—NO enforcement here! I got a degree
in ecological biology before medical school and speak
as an expert. The same people own the ships in Alaska
as here in Key West. I was in Alaska for one month each
for 22 years —I know—I have seen them many times.
Incidentally all their harbors are much deeper than Key West
no deadly silt. GO GO GO —Christine !! Jerry
Ginger, of Jupiter, Florida. wrote:
Sloan, I USE the cruise ships as cheaper to travel by cruise ships to Belize to trek inland to the Guatemalan border to see and climb my beloved Mayan pyramids. I have gotten cruises for as little as $400 total cost per person for 7 day cruise on CARNIVAL stopping at Cayman Islands, Belize, Roatan and Cozumel. I pay $79 for an all day tour [3 hours each way to the Guatemalan border to Xuchitunich [30 acres, population of 100,000 or more and more than 25 pyramids, major temple site on the border and abandoned about 950 to 1000 AD]. Other tours are 2 hours north from Belize City to Lamanai where the famous JADE Face mask on a Mayan King was found, and other major Mayan sites. The $400 pays for the cruise, room, food, everything [I don't drink alcohol on board] from Miami roundtrip.
When I try to book roundtrip air fare it is running $500 to $600 RT and then I would have to pay for a cab into BELIZE City which is one of the most dangerous cities in the world [crime, murder, etc] , find a hotel, pay daily rates, pay for food, then pay for a tour to the Mayan pyramids which will still run $80 to $100.
So I opt for the cruise and get the cheap cruise prices that are 80% off the standard cruise costs going through Vacationstogo.com. Have been booking with them since 2004. Great trepidation on first cruise, but it was so fabulous. I paid about $300 per person for a 7 day cruise on CELEBRITY and took my mother and we went to St. Martaan and St. Thomas, Key West and San Juan. Delightful, great food.
But I prefer the SMALL CRUISE SHIPS which at this point are the 1500 to 2500 passengers.
Re: KEY WEST CITY COUNCIL. Why the heck should they pay for a study. It is the CRUISE SHIP COMPANIES that will benefit as they will be able to bring their big ships into Key West. But people are getting tired of Key West. The Cruise Ship companies should pay for the study or the cost of widening. They should submit the number of extra large ships visiting per week, KEY WEST should know what the amount of money spent by individuals passengers is during the day. I am average and I don’t spend 4th much. $20 or whatever the cost was at the MEL FISHER MUSEUM, $8 for HEMMINGWAY the next time, TRUMAN the next time. REALITY is passengers only have time to visit ONE MAJOR SITE AT A TIME.– NO MATTER WHAT SIZE THE S HIP. The SITES only have ROOM for so many cruise passengers at a time. Increasing the size of the ships and the cruise passengers let loose in little Key West doesn’t always increase the ability to handle more passengers or generate more income at these places.
REALITY: Many cruise passengers, and we are generally dealing with OLDER passengers, many with less money to spend, who are buying cheaper cruises, and don’t spend as much money in Key West. Frankly, I should do the study since I have been there frequently, have taken many cruises, and am an average passenger. The WEALTHY ELDER PASSENGERS are taking QUEEN ELIZABETH, QUEEN MARY, SEABOURNE, etc and want the exotic little islands, Galapagos, Chilean fjords, Australia and New Zealand, China, and the Mediterranean, Sweden, St. Petersburg.
The Trolley is charming. Plant more bougainvillea, flowers, charming little houses. Is it possible to make Key West quaint, charming, artistic again? I think artists drawing portraits, [in NYC most of them are Chinese and fabulous] in the town square would be charming.
If I return in the near future because one of my cheap cruises stops there, I will let you know.
If, as Jerry Weinstock wrote, Carnival and other cruise ship companies actually have the means and the ability to not pollute the sea and kill the reef, the City of Key West and the State of Florida should “persuade” those cruise ship companies to behave like good stewards of the ocean on which they sail and earn their owners lots of money, or tell them to kiss Florida and the Florida Keys adios. Same deportation procedure, if the cruise ship companies don’t have the means and the ability to be good stewards.
Sancho Panza continued our America warmongering dialogue reported in yesterday’s post at this website:
Yeah, everyone “knows” War is Hell… but it attracts us like a moth to a flame… don’t it? Hey, maybe it’s a natural way to keep the population down that is being applied to a mammal instead of a social insect like ants and bees… we are long lived species, like elephants… imagine if there were that many elephants running around and trampling everything in their path? I think the invention of agriculture has created a very precarious survival mode for homo sapiens and Nature has tried different ways to cull the herd. Yeah, a movie is a way to escape it all………. a lot of people don’t even know the difference between the watcher and the watched… know what I mean?
A true lover of wisdom has hands too busy to hold on to anything! He learns by doing and every pebble in the path becomes her teacher! Oink
For USA, war is an addiction, just like for a heroin addict, heroin is an addiction. It’s a disease, like cancer. So it’s mean to blame the patient, since it’s a disease. Or so some would say.
Obomber’s reasoning on TV yesterday was psychotic. It could be extended to any alleged, or real, government atrocity done anywhere on this planet, including, say, Moscow, Peking, etc. Ergo, henceforth, ispo facto, the US has an affirmative moral obligation to bomb any regime which commits atrocities.
As I said, it’s psychosis, and it’s dishonest, because no way the US bombs Russia or China for gassing civil war dissidents in those countries. If Obomber orders the missile strike, he should ride the first missile to his target, and his wife should ride the second missile, and their daughter the third. That’s how G.W. Bush’s war against Iraq also should have begun. Very short wars.
The subconscious is a curious beast, and a wise beast; it corrects for the blunders made by the conscious; so you may be right: war is the collective subconscious’ way of culling the herd, but if that is true, the collective subconscious has been sleeping on the job, given how fast the herd’s numbers still are increasing; which leaves another possible conclusion: the collective subconscious loves fucking more than it loves war, or it fears extinction by war, so it incites lots of fucking.
Ahhhh….. la petite mort……
“Hear the voices of the lost souls calling,
Succumb so sweetly as your heart rate’s falling,
From the oceans of the darkest depths.
Get closer and closer and closer to death”
When the doer loses his/her own watcher and/or the two merge, there is no self awareness, there is no sense of anything else, which is psychosis. I think that might be different from the watcher and the watched, though.
I don’t think Obomber gives a shit who is watching. He seems to have made up his mind, he seems to believe he is right, and that’s all that matters to him. Noble, but fucked up, since is he is preaching to the choir – himself.
I’ve learned to read my own tea leaves and they tell me that Obama is the CEO of The Industrial-Military Complex… his interest(words) is their interest! Unfortunately!
More missives from the big Jew in Orlando, FL:
—– Forwarded Message —–
From: Team Grayson <alangrayson@GraysonForCongress.com>
To: Sancho Panza
Sent: Saturday, September 7, 2013 7:50 PM
Subject: Grayson in the NY Times on Syria Intel: “Trust, But Verify”
On Syria, “Trust, but Verify”
This op-ed written by Congressman Alan Grayson appeared in The New York Timestoday. Read it, share it with your friends and family, and join more than 75,000 others who oppose U.S. military intervention in Syria by signing on at DontAttackSyria.com.
WASHINGTON – THE documentary record regarding an attack on Syria consists of just two papers: a four-page unclassified summary and a 12-page classified summary. The first enumerates only the evidence in favor of an attack. I’m not allowed to tell you what’s in the classified summary, but you can draw your own conclusion.
On Thursday I asked the House Intelligence Committee staff whether there was any other documentation available, classified or unclassified. Their answer was “no.”
The Syria chemical weapons summaries are based on several hundred underlying elements of intelligence information. The unclassified summary cites intercepted telephone calls, “social media” postings and the like, but not one of these is actually quoted or attached – not even clips from YouTube. (As to whether the classified summary is the same, I couldn’t possibly comment, but again, draw your own conclusion.)
Over the last week the administration has run a full-court press on Capitol Hill, lobbying members from both parties in both houses to vote in support of its plan to attack Syria. And yet we members are supposed to accept, without question, that the proponents of a strike on Syria have accurately depicted the underlying evidence, even though the proponents refuse to show any of it to us or to the American public.
In fact, even gaining access to just the classified summary involves a series of unreasonably high hurdles.
We have to descend into the bowels of the Capitol Visitors Center, to a room four levels underground. Per the instructions of the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, note-taking is not allowed.
Once we leave, we are not permitted to discuss the classified summary with the public, the media, our constituents or even other members. Nor are we allowed to do anything to verify the validity of the information that has been provided.
And this is just the classified summary. It is my understanding that the House Intelligence Committee made a formal request for the underlying intelligence reports several days ago. I haven’t heard an answer yet. And frankly, I don’t expect one.
Compare this lack of transparency with the administration’s treatment of the Benghazi attack. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, to her credit, made every single relevant classified e-mail, cable and intelligence report available to every member of Congress. (I know this, because I read them all.) Secretary Clinton had nothing to hide.
Her successor, John Kerry, has said repeatedly that this administration isn’t trying to manipulate the intelligence reports the way that the Bush administration did to rationalize its invasion of Iraq.
But by refusing to disclose the underlying data even to members of Congress, the administration is making it impossible for anyone to judge, independently, whether that statement is correct. Perhaps the edict of an earlier administration applies: “Trust, but verify.”
The danger of the administration’s approach was illustrated by a widely read report last week in The Daily Caller, which claimed that the Obama administration had selectively used intelligence to justify military strikes in Syria, with one report “doctored so that it leads a reader to just the opposite conclusion reached by the original report.”
The allegedly doctored report attributes the attack to the Syrian general staff. But according to The Daily Caller, “it was clear that ‘the Syrian general staff were out of their minds with panic that an unauthorized strike had been launched by the 155th Brigade in express defiance of their instructions.’”
I don’t know who is right, the administration or The Daily Caller. But for me to make the correct decision on whether to allow an attack, I need to know. And so does the American public.
We have reached the point where the classified information system prevents even trusted members of Congress, who have security clearances, from learning essential facts, and then inhibits them from discussing and debating what they do know. And this extends to matters of war and peace, money and blood. The “security state” is drowning in its own phlegm.
My position is simple: if the administration wants me to vote for war, on this occasion or on any other, then I need to know all the facts. And I’m not the only one who feels that way.
Alan Grayson, a Democratic representative from Florida, is a member of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.
Dang, Sancho, if our own home grown Nobel Peace Prize winner don’t remind me of George W. Bush following 9/11. Are American presidents natural-born lunatics, or do they contract lunacy right after they are sworn in to office? Or is that too kind, demonic possession might be more accurate.