THE TORCH HAS BEEN PASSED TO A NEW GENERATION OF AMERICANS

John Kennedy was sworn in as President of the United States this day in 1961. His acceptance speech thrilling.

One line of particular importance to present times…..”The torch has passed to a new generation of Americans.” Kennedy was the youngest candidate ever elected President.

Young and vital. He brought a freshness to Washington. His Washington became a modern day Camelot. The nation was excited.

America cries out for a new Kennedy. For a freshness to an antiquated Washington. The millennials demand it. Their participation in recent elections evidences it. It’s a new time.

In short, out with the old and in with the new.

On the Democratic side, it saddens me. Joe Biden would make an excellent President. I know the man. Our relationship goes back to Syracuse Law days when I was Chairman of the Board and he a U.S. Senator.

His time has passed however. The country requires fresh blood.

Ho, ho, ho! Syracuse did it again yesterday. Beat Pitt 74-63. Pitt was favored by 9 points.

Last week, a big victory over Duke. This week a consistent pattern exhibited. The team played well. The ball went in the hole! From way out to under the basket. The defense strong.

Hope we can keep it up!

After the game, I watched Trump’s speech. He said nothing new. He took the old and because of the volume of items involved made it look like he was making a fresh offer.

His lies continued.

Not one word spoken re the impact the shutdown is having on those federal employees not being paid. Reflected to me his lack of empathy, his I don’t care about others attitude, etc.

The Chart Room first last night. John bartending.

Not a pleasant time. John had his hands full. Four nuts. John handled the situations well. A professional at his work. The atmosphere however bothered me. The Chart Room not a place for the rambunctious.

Dorothy Downs and Carmen arrived. It was good to see Dorothy again. I had not heard from here in a while and assumed she had died. She lives in Miami with a condo in Key West. Wrote and said if you are alive write, I fear you are gone! Fortunately, she wrote!

Good company. A writer. Indian folklore and artifacts.

Stopped at Fernandy’s on the way home for a bite to eat. Cuban cheese toast with tomato. Sat a while and read the local newspapers.

The weather continues to be screwy. Heavy thunderstorms all morning. Seventy six the high today. However the temperature will drop to 56 in the evening. Tomorrow in the mid-60’s.

Audrey Hepburn was one of America’s finest actresses. She died at age 63 on this day in 1993.

Her background unusual.

Her father English and mother Dutch. She got stuck in the Netherlands when Germany invaded. Spent World War II in the Netherlands. Some of her family members were killed. A brother spent the entire war in a German concentration camp. Living conditions not the best. Food not plentiful.

She returned to England following the war. Modeled, played small parts in movies as a chorus girl and dancer.

While in Monaco, she was seen performing by the French authoress Colette. Colette had authored Gigi. It was being prepared for Broadway. She recommended Hepburn to play Gigi. Hepburn got the part. Opened on Broadway November 1951.

Hollywood was next to discover Hepburn. Her first movie was Roman Holiday with Gregory Peck. She won the Academy Award for Best Actress for her performance.

She starred in the movie version of My Fair Lady.

In her later years, she spent much time as a Special Ambassador for UNICEF, the UN Children’s Fund. She traveled worldwide on behalf of the organization and spoke before many groups including the U.S. Congress.

An interesting history. From the streets of the Netherlands during World War II searching for food to the heights of Hollywood stardom.

A bad scene 2 days ago at the Lincoln Memorial.

Nathan Phillips is a Native American and a Vietnam veteran. He had participated in the Indigenous Peoples March. The March ended at the Lincoln Memorial. He was standing playing a drum and singing in his native language a song of unity. He had marched in the parade many times before.

An anti-abortion march had taken place the same day. A March for Life Rally had been held. Participating in the March were students from the Catholic Covington High School in Pork Hills, Kentucky.

A group of male students confronted Phillips. Most were wearing red Trump MAGA caps. They began chanting ” Build the Wall.” They mocked Phillips. One walked up to Phillips and stood eye ball to eye ball with him, their faces one foot away from each other. The students, including the one in Phillip’s face, wearing “smirks.”

It was clear to Phillips and other observers the students were trying to instigate a conflict.

The situation is all over social media.

The Catholic High School apologized and advised it would conduct a thorough investigation which could include expulsion.

My friends, these young high school men learn such conduct from Trump. No other. If the President thinks/acts that way, why not me? It has to be correct if the President treats people in a similar roughshod manner!

I cherry picked a small quote from the 1/19/19 edition of the Justice Building Blog. It describes the conflict between Trump and Pelosi. It is written in football vernacular: “Pelosi has the home field advantage, having played in Washington for a few decades, while POTUS has some built in advantages (controls military transport planes) but the Speaker controls the money and money makes the world go round.”

Further, “Trump is a rookie, while Pelosi is the wily veteran who knows the rule book inside out. The Speaker will not cave, while POTUS is looking for a way out of the mess he created.”

I close with Greece. Specifically, Athens. I love Athens and every part of Greece. My several trips left me enamored with Greece and its peoples.

Anna was my travel companion on the Greek trips. She is a world traveler. She was in Camolgi on the Italian Riviera 2 months ago. Two months before in her Swiss chalet on the side of Mont Blanc.

She e-mailed some photos of Athens’ places I have frequented. Pictures of the Parthenon, of course. Always to be visited. My favorite Playka bar. And a photo of Trattoria Diodos where I danced with the men and broke dishes.

It was a very good time!

Hot Dog Church and the Gardens later today. Terri singing at the Gardens.

Enjoy your Sunday!

NO FEDELE TEMPERINI, NO ERNEST HEMINGWAY

Can you imagine life without Ernest Hemingway?

It almost was.

A recent Washington Post article by James McGrath Morris describes the event where Hemingway might have been lost forever. Not only the happening, but also the identity of the person who was Hemingway’s accidental savior.

World War I. Hemingway a Red Cross ambulance driver in Italy. The Italians and Austrians in a deadly battle on an Italian hill side. Hemingway and the Italians under heavy mortar fire from the Austrians.

Hemingway was standing outside his ambulance. An Italian soldier in front of him.

A mortar struck. The Italian soldier’s body took the brunt of the explosion. Killed instantly. Actually saved Hemingway from death. Hemingway did suffer serious wounds which hospitalized him for a period of time.

Who was the Italian soldier? In all likelihood, Hemingway probably never knew the soldier in front of him who in effect died while saving Hemingway’s life. No mention in any of Hemingway’s books as to the soldier or the scenario.

The Italian soldier’s identity was only recently discovered.

Eighteen Italian soldiers died on that hillside during the mortar attack. A study began in 2017 to determine if the Soldier standing in front of Hemingway could be identified. By process of elimination, the number was brought down to 3. The list finally narrowed to 1.

Fedele Temperini. Age 26.

This factual recounting caused me to think. Were it not for Temperini, there would have been A Farewell To Arms, The Sun Also Rises, For Whom The Bell Tolls, The Old Man And The Sea.

Nor the Sloppy Joe stories, the Hemingway House, and the Hemingway Look A like contests.

Nor Hemingway’s famous love affair with Agnes von Kurowsky which was the central theme in A Farewell To Arms.

Donna cooked last night! As usual, the perfect meal! Some type broiled chicken accompanied by a delicious sauce.

A great day for the ladies! Their annual Women’s March today. The Florida Keys Chapter of Women’s March Florida is taking place in Key West. The March will go down Duval to Mallory Square. Speakers at Mallory Square.

The ladies will be promoting LOVE, a feeling stronger than hate.

This afternoon at 2, Syracuse/Pitt. Apparently Syracuse’s victory over Duke last week failed to impress the odds makers. Syracuse a 9 point underdog.

Trump is screwing my afternoon up. He is addressing the nation at 3. In the middle of the Syracuse/Pitt game. Being the political junkie I am, I will switch channels to watch Trump. I hope he is not long winded.

Key West is the location of a significant Coast Guard Base. They constantly save lives and interdict drugs. Saviors and a first line of defense.

During the shutdown, the Coast Guard is required to work. Not being paid, however.

Things are getting tough. I saw on TV last night the wife of one federal employee out west who gave blood for $50 to help her family.

Disgraceful! Shameful!

Anyhow, Willie T’s on Duval is extending a helping hand. Until the shutdown is over, free lunches to Coast Guard members in uniform and their immediate families. Seven days a week till the shutdown is resolved.

Going back in history, on this day in 1959 the movie Operation Petticoat began filming in Key West. A comical submarine movie, it starred Cary Grant and Tony Curtis.

I recall watching the movie for the first time during my last semester in law school.

Key West a funky town. Great place to live or visit. Fun.

Drag Queens a feature tourists enjoy watching. They visit Key West’s drag emporiums in large numbers.

There is a side to drag queening that does not exist in Key West. However is gaining popularity in some parts of the world. So far on a legal basis.

Child drag queening.

At the outset let me say I consider the whole thing absolutely disgusting!

Queen Lactatee (real name Nemis Quinn Melancon Golden) is 10. A Canadian Drag Queen. Reportedly taking the world of drag by storm.

This 10 year old boy is described as “creative, curvy, and magical.”

His drag pictures and videos accompanied the internet articles concerning him. He is a beautiful appearing young lady.

Another young Drag Queen is Desmond Napoles. Ten also. Not as attractive as Queen Lactatee. However has the body moves.

Desmond says he “came out of the closet at 3.”

The word is the young are taking the world of drag by storm. The argument is made there is a sex wakening in children at an earlier age than previously thought.

All of which leaves me totally confused. Is pedophilia part of the popularity aspect?

Today, we have been made aware of transsexuals. Properly so. They make up 3 percent of the population. We have all read the articles about how such individuals became aware they were in the wrong body at an early age.

Also in the mix is that young children are motivated/directed by their parents. How much of this young drag queen scenario is in reality the misuse of children in order to make money?

There is another new fad out there. Young plasma treatments. Taking the blood of the young and transferring it into the bodies of older persons.

Whether a health aid or a way to combat aging, the concept is gaining in popularity. A medical school graduate founded the business. Named it Ambrosia. Ambrosia has offices in 5 cities: Los Angeles, Tampa, Omaha, Houston, and San Francisco.

Donors are ages 16-25. Patients receiving the blood transfers 30 or older. Patient base so far runs from 30 to 92.

Not cheap. One liter of blood costs $8,000. Two liters, $12,000.

I wonder how much the donors are paid? Has to be a pretty good buck.

Enjoy your day!

RIGHT OR WRONG?

I seem to be on the other side of recent Key West City Commission decisions. This time re the Commission’s vote concerning sunscreens.

We know sunscreens containing certain blocks help prevent skin cancers. Sun bathers clothe themselves in such sunscreens. Wisely so.

Now comes a new concern. Those ingredients in sunscreens that keep the bad rays off our bodies are considered by some harmful to coral reefs. Key West has a major coral reef. A responsibility.

The 2 ingredients oxybenzone and octinoxate.

Not all experts agree that the named chemicals harm coral reefs. Opinion is divided.

Even if harmful, the issue arises as to which is more important: Human health or the coral reef.

Key West has decided on the side of the coral reef. Only 2 other places have so decided. Hawaii and Palau.

The Commission recently in it first vote voted 7-0 to ban sunscreens containing the 2 chemicals. The lopsided vote suggests the final vote early in February will likewise support the ban.

What of the up front important items affecting Key West not receiving prompt and better attention? Like condition of the roads, traffic, parking, bicycles, affordable housing, etc. Lots of talk. Little action.

The Commission moved rapidly re the sunscreen issue. It moves at a tortoise pace re other more immediate problems.

Another ocean problem.

It has been reported that the oceans had their highest recorded temperatures in years in 2018. A clear indication that global warm is accelerating at a faster rate than had been anticipated.

Greenhouse gas heat is absorbed by ocean waters. Some 93 percent. The increase in water temperature is a clear indication gas house emissions are rising. Faster than anticipated. Greenhouse emissions and water temperature interrelated.

Water temperature also a clear indication of climate change.Ocean temperature important to Key West. An island surrounded by water. Experts claim the warmer the water, the more intense hurricanes will be. Increased water temperature also destroys coral reefs and causes sea levels to rise.

Note the coral reef destruction. Water temperature a more significant cause of Key West’s coral reef problems? If the 2 chemical argument correct, it has to be insignificant when compared to the heat of water as a cause.

The Chart Room first last night. Charming Tammy bartending.

Ran into Cheryl and Robert. We laughed and joked through a couple of drinks. Dinner tonight together at Hot Tin Roof.

Ollie came in. Do not see him enough. A smart guy. Especially when it comes to environmental matters.

Then to the Blue Macaw. Terri singing. Did not want to miss her.

There to be entertained by Terri were Lynda and Bob Frechette, Joe and Andrea, and Angie. Donna showed up later. She had a meeting to attend first.

Angie and I spent some time together. An interesting woman. Remember to stop into her Crystals and and Coconuts store at 803 Whitehead.

My today out and about begins at 4 with Laurie Thibaud and her radio 107.5 FM talk show. We will chat about this and that. Entertaining. Informative. Join us.

A Comment to my Key West Lou blog this morning described Trump’s Attorney General nominee William Barr as a “ringer.” An apt description. I agree.

Barr is being foisted on the American public. His nomination an act of public deception.

I enjoyed the 1950’s. It was Eisenhower time. A fatherly type President who guided us wisely during his years in office.

They were years of growth for me. My high school, college and law school years.

Eisenhower spoke to the nation when he retired. He warned of the increasing power of the military-industrial complex. Warned of its growing influence.

He was correct. We all know it. Unfortunately, his words went unheeded.

Enjoy your day!

BROADWAY LEGEND CAROL CHANNING PASSES ON

Carol Channing died thursday at age 97. A great talent taken from us. To spend eternity as a brilliant diamond in the night sky.

Channing won 4 Tony awards. The first for Hello Dolly! She was the original Dolly Levi.

I was fortunate to have seen her on Broadway in Hello Dolly! An inspiring performance.

Even more of a thrill was seeing her perform in Key West sometime in the mid 1990’s.

My wife and I were staying at the Sheraton Suites. A perfection location. A suite, great pool, good food, and Smathers Beach across the street. All for $85 a night!

We were heading out for Duval one evening when we heard this great singing. I immediately recognized it as Carol Channing. Went outside to the pool and there she was! Blowing everyone out with her unique singing voice!

The chaise lounges had been removed. Tables set up with white table clothes and candles. Everyone dressed. She was probably doing a special appearance at some corporate function.

My wife and I headed over to the pool bar. Open to he public, though not many seated there. Grabbed 2 stools, ordered drinks, and watched her perform.

The beauty of it all was that Channing’s microphone and the spot from which she was performing was all of 5 feet from us!

We never made Duval. The best of everything was at Sheraton Suites that evening.

Never left the house yesterday. Spent the day finalizing my podcast show Tuesday Talk with Key west Lou.

Show went unusually well.The reason great topics. A crazy week. What with the shutdown, Barr’s testimony, tariff wars, opioid crisis, how Trump’s attorney fees are being paid, etc. Plus the touching video/story of the 11 year old baby who heard for the first time.

Sleeping after the show a problem. I get so worked up while doing the half hour show that I do not sleep tuesday nights. I will nap all afternoon today to compensate.

American society is upside down in many ways. One is criminal sentencing. We are all aware.

Let me provide you with an example that is stomach turning. Two police officers involved in child porn getting off with light sentences.

Dean Worthington a sergeant with the Columbus, Ohio police department. He was caught participating in and contributing to a child pornography ring. Children engaged in sex acts with adults.

Charged with 4 counts. Plead guilty. Received a 90 day sentence.

El Paso Deputy Sheriff Donald Fair even worse. He got no time. His crime involved sexually exhibiting a young boy, creating child porn, and exhibiting the porn on the internet.

Ten years probation his punishment.

On yesterday’s date in 2009, Sully Sulenberg made history. He will be remembered for all time.

A U.S. Airways pilot, his Airbus 320 had just left LaGuardia Airport. A bunch of birds blew his engines. He could not return to the airport. He put the plane down on the Hudson River without the loss of one life.

A miracle on the Hudson.

We have heard of tsunamis and water floods taking many lives. Only once a molasses flood.

It was 1919. The place a plant in Boston. The plant used crude molasses in what ever it processed. A 58 foot tank was in the plant’s building loaded with crude molasses. 2.5 million gallons worth.

The tank exploded. An 8 foot wave shot out. Swept away inside parts of the plant building including walls and doors. Made its way to the street. Pushed over beams holding tracks for elevated trains.

Twenty one persons killed, many more injured, huge property damage.

More than 100 lawsuits resulted. A special auditor appointed. Total settlements $1 million. A lot of money in 1919.

William Barr. Trump’s nominee for Attorney General. Testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee yesterday.

My impressions and comments. May be a bit long.

Barr is 68. Retired. Was Attorney General under Bush 41. Attorney General during the Iran-Contra affair. Reagan was President during the “wrong doing.” Bush’s name came up in the investigation while he was President for something that occurred while he was Vice-President.

Barr distinguished appearing. Preppy. Horn rimmed glasses. Right out of the 1980’s.

I did not like his testimony.

Ask first, why would a retired man want to go back to the Washington swamp in his senior years? Not for money. What else, if anything? Think about it.

Two points in his testimony bothered me.

He agreed he would permit Mueller to complete the investigation. Fine. However, he wanot sure whether he would make all, a part, or none of Mueller’s report available to the public or Congress. He claimed it was his decision to make under the special counsel law.

He was correct in that regard. However after the time and importance involved, one hundred percent transparency is required. The people not only have a right to know, they need to know.

Then there is the issue of recusal. Last year, Barr wrote a 19 page report explaining Presidential supremacy as regards investigations and that a President because of it could neither be impeached nor removed from office.

Barr claims the report was unsolicited and he wrote it merely to express his feelings at the time. He also stated it was being misinterpreted and did not reflect what I have set forth in the previous paragraph.

Jeff Sessions recused himself. Barr should also. Barr said not necessarily in effect. He would submit the situation to the Ethics Committee. If the Ethics Committee said he should recuse himself, he would not. His reason being that he considered recusal to be his alone to make.

Some other parts of his testimony bothered me.

He praised Sessions for how he handled the border problem and the issues it raised. Suggested he concurred in removing children from parents.

He claimed thousands were coming over the border. Totally factually inaccurate.

He is for a “barrier.” Did not say wall.

As to voter suppression, he has a concern. Problem is the concern did not appear with people of color and the poor who were finding it increasingly difficult to vote. His concern was for those purportedly voting illegally. Like blocks of votes showing up in a district in excess of the number of people eligible to vote.

My gut feeling is that under Barr, the Mueller investigation will have been a waste. Its pertinent parts will never see the light of day.

My friends, we are losing our government!

Not done with the Barr issue yet.

The United Stats is a nation of laws, not men. It is the underlying principle of the American legal and political system.

Trump and those who support him do not believe in a government of laws. Believe power in the people (certain persons) controlling. Trump himself an example.

Such a group becomes a “ruling class.” Hopefully to be followed in time by a transformation to an “aristocracy.”

John Adams strongly supported and proclaimed the U.S. was a nation of laws and not people. He saw the evils of an aristocracy. He said “aristocracy is a monster to be chained.”

I believe Barr leans towards ruling class as opposed to a nation of laws.

When he was Attorney General under Bush, Barr is reported to have said to Bush: “I’ve had an itchy finger.”

When the Iran Contra problem reared its ugly head as concerned Bush, Barr was for firing special counsel Larry Walsh. Shades of the night Nixon wanted to fire the special prosecutor.

The problem with the Barr nomination is that it is a refection of what is happening to our country. The rich have tried for 50 or more years to take over. To become a nation of people rather than laws. They have succeeded with the Supreme Court. Succeeded with Trump.

They are marching ahead to victory. Unless those who believe in the basics of American democracy take a stand as strong as the ruling class have and oppose this affront to our way of life.

Sorry for being so long winded on this issue.

Enjoy your day!

MELTS EVEN THE COLDEST HEART…..11 MONTH OLD BABY HEARS

There is a video on the internet of an 11 month baby girl laughing. Laughing uncontrollably because she is hearing for the first time.

When Scarlet Benjamin was 3 months old, she suffered a bacterial infection. Scarlet was treated with antibiotics. The antibiotics caused her to lose most of her hearing. Enough so that she could not hear everyday sounds.

A special hearing aid was devised. Tried yesterday for the first time. Scarlet on her mother’s lap. Her older sister began talking to her.

Scarlet looked at her strangely, then began to laugh uncontrollably. Non-stop.

Scarlet’s mother joined in. Scarlet continued her laughing. Mom of course began crying.

The video is titled “Best Days of Our Lives.” Filmed by Natalie Newport, National Curator of WAPT 16 ABC.

Don’t miss it! Have a tissue in hand as you watch.

In the course of 72 hours, Syracuse played its worse game of the year and then its best.

Syracuse lost to George Tech. Looked terrible! Last night, Syracuse played #1 Duke on Duke’s home court. Syracuse looked terrific. Won 95-91 in overtime.

Both teams played well.

Interestingly, Syracuse was down 12-0 at the beginning of the game. I was moaning. It was going to be that kind of night! They came back, however. And beat the mighty Duke!

Chris from Syracuse e-mailed me. He suggested Syracuse only play top 20 teams. Syracuse wins! Play lesser talent and Syracuse loses.

Tonight, Boys’ Night Out. Seven at Guy deBoer’s home 3732 Flagler Ave. If it was not tuesday, I would go. Never have been. Tuesday night my podcast. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou.

The show 9 my time. I have so much material to vent over. Amazing! It has been an active week.

Join me for a fast moving half hour. Guaranteed you will enjoy. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

One of Key West’s leading figures Lynda Frechette is now doing a column for a New York City publication. Cabaret Hot Spot. www.cabarethotspot.com.

Lynda will be reporting re the Key West area.

Her first column has already appeared. Terri Smith and Terri’s recent appearance for several evenings at the Little Room Jazz Club.

You can only appreciate Crystals and Coconuts if you visit the store. Stop in and chat with owner Angie Gilligan. The store sits at 803 Whitehead. Can’t miss it.

Strange winter weather this year. Hot and cold back and forth. The past 2 days 80. Today and tomorrow in the 60’s. Night and day.

The southern border is going to be even more crowded. A new caravan has left Honduras headed our way. Six hundred strong.

Simultaneously, it has been announced that the U.S. military at the border has had their deployment extended to September. I worry that at some point, bullets will fly. Something neither the migrants nor soldiers want.

As I write, I can hear the TV set in the background. William Barr is being sworn in. He is the nominee for Attorney General. A Senate committee is doing its advise and consent.

Barr concerns me because of a report he wrote a few years ago supporting executive power and indicating that a President was beyond prosecution, etc. With the Mueller investigation coming to a head, that memo and whatever his position is today becomes of extreme importance.

Enjoy your day!

STRANGE DOUBLE STANDARD

Amy Hawkins and Jeffrey Wasserstrom in a recent Atlantic article made a keen observation. In the United States and most western nations, children are banned from movies that depict nudity. However, there are no age limits on touring museums where the same nudity is on display.

My sunday began with Sloan. Minor mechanical problems with the computer and cell phone. Resolved.

Later in the day, Hot Dog Church. Big crowd. About 40 women. And me. The only man.

Chatted with several of the ladies. My lesbian wives present. Sat with Donna. Terri off in an easy chair “watching” the Patriots game. Whooping it up!

More women than usual. Laurie told me it’s because the season is beginning. The crowds will get bigger over the next few weeks.

Then to the Chart Room. Just John and me again. Strange. Most nights packed. Two this week not.

I enjoy talking with John so it was of no matter to me. Probably to John. No customers, no tips.

Stopped at Publix on the way home. Cupboard bare again.

Food terribly expensive! Prices goosed upward frequently in small amounts. Customers unaware of the price increases.

I don’t know how families afford it. Most are pretty much limited to food and gas. Not enough left for much else.

Tonight normally would be Dueling Bartenders for me. Terri White guest performer. Not this evening. Syracuse playing Duke at 7. I plan on watching the game from home.

Duke ranked #1, Syracuse unranked. Duke a 17 point favorite.

Cheryl and Roger Keast back! There home some strange sounding community beginning with a K. A suburb of Chicago. I have never learned to spell it correctly so the K has to suffice.

Enjoy their company. Look forward to seeing them this week. Probably dinner one evening.

Automobile accidents the primary cause of deaths in the United States for years. No more. Now, opioids. The National Safety Council reported that 2017 found opioid deaths exceeded those from car accidents. For the first time!

The report stated one of the reasons for the increase in opioid deaths was an increase among growing children and adolescents.

The opioid epidemic is overwhelming the U.S. We are not effectively addressing it. Too much money involved. Graft rampant. In excess of 100 persons per day dying.

Sad! A black mark on our society!

Beware! Freedoms can be lost through back doors.

It bothers me that I can criticize my government, but not Israel.

There is an attempt to reenact a law in existence when Trump took office which he has failed to renew.

Trump an anti-Semitic. No question.

Israeli money has been pouring into the hands of out politicians for years. Quietly. Congress reacted to the dollars as expected. Danced to the tune of he who paid the fiddler.

For years there has been a law appointing an anti-Semitic envoy whose responsibility was to monitor criticism of Israel. The law has not been renewed under Trump.

A powerful Israeli PAC has been spreading its dollars around to get it passed by the new Congress. Swiftly.

The new House of Representatives recently did. By a vote of 411-1. Now before the Senate.

The present bill stronger than the old law, which dates back to 2004, in that it provides the envoy with Ambassador status.

I have to believe the new House members knew not what was before them. I doubt any would vote for a law that makes it a crime to do something which with regard to our own country is legal. Referred to as freedom of speech.

Why is Israel receiving this strange protection? What about Great Britain, France, Canada, etc.?

Israel under Netanyahu has become war mongering. Expect everything from the U.S. Protections and assistance they do not require any longer. Our friend Israel is taking advantageous of us.

Netanyahu is an autocrat. He is meddling all over the face of the Middle East.

The Israeli people are our friends. Netanyahu not.

Whatever, the proposed law not a healthy one for American citizens.

Enjoy your day!

BENEDICT ARNOLD?

Much furor yesterday. The news that Trump was under investigation by the FBI well before the Mueller investigation. The issue Trump’s alleged chumminess with Russia.

Depending how this development plays out, it could make Benedict Arnold look like a patriot.

I attended David Wolkowsky’s memorial service yesterday. Held at the Custom House. The perfect venue for a farewell greeting to a man committed to art and history.

The event well attended. Standing room only by the time I arrived.

The love and respect for David evidenced on the faces of those in attendance. Everyone laughed and some had a tear in their eye as David’s life unfolded.

I consider my relationship with David to have been rare. Yesterday’s event was rare.

Stopped at the Ocean Key pool early in the afternoon. Wanted to say hello to my dear friend Fran Dixon who is in from Buffalo. Knew she would be by the pool. Always is.

A beautiful woman working on her tan. Sleeping. My hello woke her.

First time in the pool area at Ocean Key. Never went inside the fence. What a place?! Well done, large, a bar, etc.

Made arrangements to meet at 6 at the Chart Room to watch the Syracuse/Georgia Tech game with her husband Tom joining us.

Then to the Pier House Beachside Bar for lunch. Packed. Tourists. Some beautiful women prancing around in their bikinis. One less than a bikini. A thong.

Good for this old man to see and remember.

Game time at 6. John had the corner TV set up for the game. The three of us sat at the round table and lamented. Syracuse sucked! Lost 73-59.

Georgia Tech threw up a tight zone defense. Syracuse could not penetrate. The 3’s were not falling in sufficient number. Buddy Boehiem looked better. Made three 3’s.

Syracuse plays Duke Monday night. Duke ranked #1 nationally. I fear Syracuse is going to get killed!

Fran a true friend. Concerned that I am well, have enough to eat, etc. She brings me goodies each trip.

Always sauce and meat. This trip 5 Ball jars with pieces of pork and sausage buried in the sauce. Two loaves of protein bread. She knows I eat low carb bread. She has a Canadian source that provides a protein bread with only 4 carbs per slice.

The best her lack of concern for my health when she handed me several small bags of home made chocolate candies.

Dan and Nancy at the bar. Canadians. Met them in September when they were visiting. One of them is involved with Dow Chemical.

I could not talk long. The Syracuse game was beginning. Dan and Nancy will be here a week. We will have an opportunity to chat hopefully before they leave.

Today, Sunday. Means Hot Dog Church and the Gardens.

Toni Tarracino is the daughter of the infamous and well liked Captain Tony. I wrote a bit yesterday about shrimp boats. Toni commented something this morning I did not know.

I was under the impression the shrimp boats were docking at Stock Island. Toni says not that many any more. Recent Stock Island developments took away the docks. Now when a storm approaches, the shrimp boats anchor off shore.

Key West has a tendency to jump into new things. Not particularly wise. Significant consideration should be given when dramatic changes are suggested.

Sunscreen the issue.

Apparently there are 2 ingredients in most sunscreens that are harmful to coral reefs. So say certain authorities. Then there are those that claim the 2 ingredients are not harmful to coral reefs and that failure to incorporate them into the sunscreen would leave users susceptible to skin cancers. The 2 ingredients are those that best block bad sun rays.

The issue re the 2 ingredients relatively new. Only 2 places have barred the sale of sun screens containing the ingredients feared. Hawaii and Palau.

The choice simple. Human health v. coral reef health. Death could very well be the outcome from both perspectives.

My suggestion to the City Commission is take your time. Look before you leap. Study the issue well before you decide.

I am not impressed that because 2 places have determined death to coral reefs that the rest of the world should be quick to accept the findings. Especially where human health is involved.

I like Angie Gilligan’s store Crystals and Coconuts. It reflects her special taste and beauty. Stop by and take a look. 803 Whitehead Street.

Enjoy your Sunday!

CELEBRATION OF A LIFE OF A GREAT AND HUMBLE MAN…..DAVID WOLKOWSKY

A few months ago, Key West’s premier citizen David Wolkowsky passed on. Today, his life is being celebrated.

There will be joy. David made it to 99. He led a good and successful life. Performed wonders for his community and its citizens.

Acquired the title Mr. Key West along the way. I personally labeled him the Father of Modern Key West. What exists today would not have been without his vision and efforts. He envisioned Key West as a funky fun tourist attraction and made it so.

The Celebration begins at 12:30 at the Custom House.

Jean and Joe Thornton leave Key West today to spend some time at their home in Birmingham and to travel abroad. They will be missed.

We enjoyed dinner together last night at Berlin’s. Better company not to be found.

New Hampshire’s Joanne and David showed up. Good people. Their tenth visit to Key West. I never met them before and here have run into them 3 nights in a row.

First time for me at Berlin’s since the sale. I was upset smoking had been prohibited. I could only stay away so long. The food, staff, and Bria Ansara’s singing too good to avoid.

Walked over to the Chart Room afterwards. Packed. Chatted with John a while. Also with Rich. Rich is husband to Carrie. Carrie the La Trattoria bartender who saved my life a year ago. I was choking. She was over the bar and giving me the Heimlich in seconds.

Buffalo’s Tom and Fran Dixon have returned. Let the canons roar! Love them! Hopefully we will get together this evening to watch the Syracuse/Georgia Tech game together.

Fran has been away too long. She is concerned for me. Makes sure I am well fed. She cooks meatballs and pork and places them in Ball jars buried in sauce. Freezes the jars. Brings several to me each trip.

Makes for great meals. I am well taken care of.

The Syracuse/Georgia Tech game is at 6. Syracuse underdog by 6 points.

Love Angie Gilligan’s jewelry!

Angie is the proprietor of Crystals and Coconuts at 803 Whitehead. She features some of the finest hand made jewelry from both Key West and distant places.

Finally, some success with a cosmetic shop. Cosmetic store ERA Ageless at 617 Duval has closed. For good!

Congratulations to the citizens who took it upon themselves to picket and otherwise harass a business that was screwing around with credit card bills, etc. Elderly visitors the target.

Sam Kaufman is a local attorney. I have never met him. He has an excellent reputation. He is also an elected City Commissioner.

He has not impressed me with regard to 2 recent matters he has been discussing.

The first is Mt. Trashmore. He thought it time to consider the property for use as an affordable housing site. He was ill advised. The property not economically feasible for housing or any major development. Removal of the landfill itself estimated at $70-150 million.

Not the way to start.

My other concern is his raising of what he perceives might be an anti-Semitism situation. I believe him far off base on this issue.

His concern begins with the cosmetic shops. They are Israeli owned. He fears public resentment might be a reflection of anti-Semitism.

I have been in Key West some 30 years. Not one time have I ever seen, heard, or noticed the slightest anti-Semitism. We are One Happy Family.

I fear Kaufman’s raising this issue and not dropping it is going to open a non-existent wound. He is being a trouble maker in the pursuit of the issue. He is seeing shadows where none exist.

To place matters in perspective, the David Wolkowsky being honored today was of the Jewish faith. The event will be well attended and many sincere expressions of love shared.

“A city on a hill…..A shining city upon a hill.” Metaphors coming down to us from a portion of the Sermon on the Mount. Matthew 5:14.

Other than Jesus first expressing them, the words were not publicly used till 1630. John Winthrop was a clergyman on the vessel Anabella. He spoke them while exhorting future Massachusetts Bay colonists to the task before them.

Two great Americans spoke the phrase in public addresses. John Kennedy and Ronald Reagan. Bush 41 also in a home made version. Kennedy and Reagan quoted as their source John Winthrop. Bush quoted no source.

We are no longer the shining city on the hill. In 2 years, Trump has destroyed our position in the world.

The wall thing makes the U.S. a laughing stock worldwide.

Besides leaving many federal employees without sufficient funds, Trump has come up with another idea where to get the funds to build a wall few want or deem required. Transfer funds from Army Corps of Engineering monies already authorized for natural disaster assistance. Moneys waiting use for Maria caused devastation in Puerto Rico, Michael Panhandle damage, recovery monies long overdue in the Keys because of Irma, and moneys to assist California because of the fires.

Yes, there are still moneys to be spent and/or owed in the Keys. Especially the southern portion. People still living in tents and shacks.

Trump makes me laugh. People still seriously hurting from natural disasters. He does not spend all the money authorized. He has been greedily hoarding it for a rainy day. The wall must be the rainy day.

Trump has an army of attorneys to defend him re the various investigations. It recently was announced that White House Counsel Cipollone had hired 17 more attorneys to assist in Trump’s defense. I do not know the total number.

Donald Trump, Jr., Jared Kushner, and Vice President Pence also are making use of White House Counsel in investigation matters.

Guess who is paying this bill? You got it! The taxpayers!

A 1993 opinion stated the President when sued in any matter is entitled to have the government pay legal expenses. Under the use and observation of the White House Counsel. The opinion applies to certain staff, also.

What a deal! Commit crime or wrongdoing and get someone else to pay your attorney fees.

This situation is similar to that which Congressmen had for years providing them a special benefit. A Congressperson who had sex charges levied against him was permitted the use of tax dollars to pay any settlement. Terrific! Sex for free! Sex without consequence!

The President, etc. also have outside counsel. I could not figure out if they are being paid personally by the client or from the Presidential slush fund described.

I end today with shrimp boats. Love that 1950’s tune…..Shrimp boats are a’coming, their sails are in sight……

Shrimp boats on the horizon beauties to behold. Never appreciated the song till I came to Key West and saw them first hand.

From the 1950’s to the 1970’s, the shrimp fishing business flourished. Some 300 boats. All harbored in Key West. Average catch per day 2,500 pounds.

Nothing is forever. Farm raised shrimp came into being. Key West’s shrimp industry close to being totally destroyed. The shrimp bats moved to Stock Island. Only a handful. The catch minimal.

Sad.

Enjoy your day!

STRICTLY A KEY WEST BLOG TODAY

Today, strictly Key West. So much to share re our lovely island.

The weather first. Only because the past 2 days found Key West undergoing a cold spell. Temperature at night in the low 60’s. Yesterday in the mid 60’s. I am writing this blog at 9:30 this morning. Temperature 63.

Heat on!

Today’s high 74 and low 69. Tomorrow, a return to normalcy.

Manicure and haircut yesterday. Followed by lunch at Fernandy’s. Sandy’s renamed indoor restaurant on White Street.

Four found me on Laurie Thibaud’s station 107.5 FM radio show. We chatted more than an hour. Topics included the government shutdown, people going without pay, female CEO’s, and Wounded Warriors.

Fun. Laurie was born to do the show.

Walked across the street following the show to the Chart Room.

A Christopher wrote several days ago that he was going to stop in the Chart Room every evening till he caught me. He wanted his copy of Irma and Me signed and share with me an Irma experience. I wanted to save him time. Told him meet me thursday at 6.

I was there from 5:30 to 7:30. No Christopher.

Enjoyed a most interesting conversation with Tim and Madison. Visiting from South Jersey. A young couple. Tim a farmer. By choice. Not a family business. He saw it as a business to get into. Raises soybeans, corn, and barley.

The tariff wars are killing him. He cannot sell at all. Nothing. Fortunately, he is able to store his crops. What they will bring when marketable again, he does not know.

Not a happy camper with Trump.

Madison is a physical therapist.

Both love Key West. Tim’s second visit, Madison’s first.

Joann and Dave in the Chart Room again. Met them the other night. Friends of Jean and Joe Thornton. The were waiting for Janine. The 3 were having dinner at Hot Tin Roof.

Joan and Dave are from New Hampshire. This their tenth year visiting. Stay at the Pier House each visit.

Stopped at Blue Macaw on the way home. Not many people. Cold!

Spent some time with Angie. A lovely person. Inside and out.

She is the proprietor of Crystals and Coconuts across the street at 803 Whitehead. Born in the Philippines. Moved to Japan. Somehow got to Key West.

Her store a place of beauty. She sells handmade treasures such as jewelry, painted coconuts, painted buoys, and other souvenirs. Some clothes. T shirts made from the softest fabric to be found. Fisherman wrap pants.

Angie’s store off the beaten track. If you can find Blue Macaw, you can find Coconuts and Crystals. Her store is across the street from Blue Macaw.

Key West is full of writers this weekend. Many highly skilled professionals. The annual Key West Literary Seminar began thursday and continues into sunday. Certain of the more famous writers will be doing readings.

A good place for writers new and old to meet and share thoughts.

The event is being held at the San Carlos on Duval.

The little bridge that connects Mallory Square to Margaritaville is closed. Under repair.

Two projects underway at one time. The Key West Aquarium suffered damage to its seawall as a result of Irma. Being attended to at the same time that the mooring dolphin which was damaged by a cruise ship is being repaired.

Simonton, Greene, Whitehead, and Fleming names of prominent Key West streets. Named after former owners of the whole of Key West.

The year 1829. Four men owned Key West. John Simonton, Pardon Greene, John Whitehead, and John Fleming. On January 11, 1829, the four entered into an agreement whereby the island was divided into 4 parts.

The last 2 days, the name Angie Aparo has come up. Made me wonder who he is. Turns out many regard him as a great unknown musician. He has been described as “the greatest musician you have never heard.”

A legend in certain circles.

He performed many years ago at Irish Kevin’s. He returns sunday to First Flight Island Restaurant.

My sense is there will be a large crowd.

New Irma information.

Irma resulted in a population drop. The University of Florida conducted a study. Discovered every key, city and unincorporated area lost local residents between 2017 and 2018.

The loss just under 3,000. Present number of inhabitants 73,940.

Tennessee Williams resided in Key West 30 plus years. His home 1 1/2 blocks from my daughter Lisa’s.

Williams is often quoted. One that fits right into today’s happenings: “The only thing worse than a liar is a liar that’s also a hypocrite.”

Me thinks Trump wears both shoes.

Tonight dinner with Jean and Joe Thornton at Berlin’s. My first visit since the new owners decided to prohibit smoking.

Enjoy your day!