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Friday, September 2, 2005

Peak America

There's been a lot of talk lately of the "peak oil" crisis. Supposedly we're about to be confronted with noticeable scarcity of crude oil, and our economy, heavily dependent on petroleum products, is due to collapse. Soon, say the proponents of this theory.

I'm not sure I can buy that, but especially in light of the week's events relating to the disaster in Nawlins, I'm convinced that the weaknesses of America have reached the point that our best days are behind us, at least for many decades.

It got me thinking, when were we riding our highest? Before the ruin of the Crescent City. Before 9/11. Before Bush v. Gore. Before the internet bubble burst.

Sometime in the late '90s -- '97 or '98, I guess -- we had Peak America. We couldn't (or wouldn't) keep it going, and there was nowhere to go but downhill.

I don't want to talk, write, or read about whose fault that was. Our descent into constant, meaningless bickering and blaming is the cause as well as the effect of many of our present difficulties. I just want to hear some reflections on what to me is an undeniable truth: America is in decline.

And more importantly, what we can do about it.

Comments (20)

First, I apologize for my tone these last few days. I was upset. Second, this topic is something I’ve thought a lot about, although my definition of America riding high isn’t going to be based on economics. I’d suggest Peak America occurred shortly after World War 2, when we had saved the free world. This was our zenith. In cowboy terms, we were the undeniable “good guys.” For the past 50 years, oil has been the driving force of world politics, and America. so used to being the most blessed in terms of natural resources, has fixed an envious stare on the Middle East. This is when we changed. I believe our decline began in 1953 when we overthrew the government of Iran. We were no longer the “good guys.” You chart how we’ve handled the oil problem and you chart our descent into bullying empire and beyond.

The "Me Generation" needs to get over itself and, as a society, we need to get back to thinking about the Common Good. I think the descent of America has a lot to do with growing support for a kind of "social darwinism", or a dog-eat-dog kind of economic structure.

Civil society doesn't thrive on social darwinism. It thrives when the Common Good and general welfare are supported.

My sense of the solution involves a shift in consciousness from indulgence to nurture beginning with self and extending to every aspect of life beyond.

>>The "Me Generation" needs to get over itself and, as a society, we need to get back to thinking about the Common Good.

Listening to talk radio callers sing Kumbaya for the last couple of days while they wait for the blessed day gas goes over $3/gallon makes me think that day is far off. Something has got to change this dialogue.

For the record, the peak was on November 20, 1999. That was the day I moved to Phoenix. One year later we didn't know who the next president would be and I was an unemployed accused felon moving back to Oregon. Good times. :-)

Thank you, Butterbean.

I think America will resume its upward trajectory as soon as Baby Boomers relinquish control of all major organizations (government, business, etc.) to younger people. Baby Boomers have been running things for a couple decades now and its clearly not working out. You guys need more time to play golf and listen to your oldies records. If people are afraid of Gen Xers being too inexperienced to run things, I can't imagine it could get much worse than the human misery on display in N.O. this past week.

Thanks, by the way, for setting the bar so low, Baby Boomers. All us Gen Xers have to do is:

* not run up trillions in debt
* not prosecute an insane war in a foreign land
* not engage in oral sex in the oval office
* not allow tens of thousands to die in a major city
* not rape and pillage the environment
* not commercialize everything to within an inch of its life

and we'll have a better record than the baby boom. I think we can do it.

Peak America ended when the Progressive Era started kicking in strong. In one decade we empowered the federal government to institute an income tax, sent tens of thousands of young men to die on another continent over a completely unjustifiable war (worse in the nation's history), made drinking illegal and gave women the right to vote.

Amazing we survived at all.

A lot of people, particularly parents, are worried about this question. The issues in this Blog, are all interconnected and realisticly even here in Portland or on our coast, we are only one volcano blast or Tsunami away from the type of devestation that New Orleans is suffering.

I think the biggest threat and the reason for our decline is the loss of community. As "outdated" or funky as Doonesberry and other media want to make them out. The churches and organizations like the Elks, Masons, Odd Fellows, Grange,PTA, Boy Scouts, all declining while their once massive structures are transformed into Art Museums and restaurants, we lose the balancing force and what used to be the "breeding" ground for political leaders, and the middle class in general.

Capra captured it in his Meet John Doe, movie. Instead of institutions have taken over we have now where things are "too big to fail". Ayn Rand's work captures much of it though I think she carries it to extreme. Some of the early work ,her first book, talks about the destruction of the middle class, and the melt down in Russia.

The middle class is the workhorse of society. They used to provide the community leaders who stepped up to the plate and led the Civil Service Drills, were the Boy Scout Leaders, women who planned the spagetti supper fund raisers to raie money for the pooor, these small time leaders knew who to tap to get things done and tackled problems on a small scale. In a place like New Orleans where you don't have that buffer, you have the place melt down into anarchy.

Low income housing integrated with middle and upper income houseing gives us an integrated society and low income kids exposure to how the other half lives so they can go to good schools, be in Boy Scouts or play soccer with kids from all economic classes and understand what it takes to take the next step up to middle class, that was what was so ludicris about the $850/mo studio apartments as low income housing.

Without community forces or John Doe Clubs, it gives the power to those who control the media and dialogue. Your O comments.

I doubt blogs can replace community hands on working together to accomplish small but meaningful things to better the lot of folks in the community, but it may be a place to organize and ask the questions.

It won't be easy. I'm not sure what the peak was (several good thoughts already in this thread) but as a member of the generation following the "Greatest Generation" (I'm not a boomer -- born in 1942) I have to say we never measured up. Bill Clinton (the first President from our age group) put some of our most promising people into positions of power, and they -- and he -- disappointed, for the most part. We're missing something, and I think we've passed that lack on to the next bunch. What are we going to do about it? I started by saying it won't be easy. That's because the core of the solution is education. And how can people teach what they don't know? It will, as Jack says, probably take generations to fix. But the place to start is in the schools.

"A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they shall never sit in."
Greek Proverb

"I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy."
John Adams

"Environmentalists may be hell to live with,
but they make great ancestors."
Andy Kerr

A society becomes great by planning for tomorrow and making sacrifices to give a better life to future generations. A society goes into decline when the main concern becomes short-term gains at the expense of the future.

For the past several decades, our society has been living for today, spending economic and environmental capital like crazy, and passing the bill on to those who come later. We aren't investing all this money we're spending: we're using it for current consumption, rather like putting all your groceries and clothes on credit cards. Not your credit cards, your children's credit cards.

How do we reverse our decline? Tighten our belts, live within our means, and invest in the future -- not for us, for our grandchildren. We need to leave them a well-maintained infrastructure, a toxics-free environment, beautiful natural areas, large budget surpluses, and permanent endownments for education, arts and culture.

No society ever became great with "me first, live for today, and screw the future" as its dominant value.

Sid told us, "I think the descent of America has a lot to do with growing support for a kind of "social darwinism", or a dog-eat-dog kind of economic structure."

Yes, it's dog eat dog all right.
Like the PERS dogs eating our schools and basic services.

I worry that GenX will have even greater issues grappling with the "me first" culture. Moreover, I think Allan's right that it starts in schools. Unfortunately GenX basically went through school in the period of deterioration, program cuts and declining performance. It doesn't bode well for a recovery with my generation at the helm.

Good topic. A few thoughts: I agree we peaked in the '90s, the 1890s, still known as the Gay Nineties, a time of prosperity, hope, economic growth. It was a time my grandmother was known as the Merry Widow.

However, I agree with *GenX* that GenXers can fix things. Two of my kids are GenXers and I feel very comfortable leaving the world to them and their children. [My third kid is a slacker, but even he is starting to get serious.]

Yes, the schools have been bad and are getting worse, but remember our best education comes from our first, second and subsequent jobs. Everything I know I learned AT WORK! I'm now self-employed and loving it.

Things do look dark now, but read "The Gilded Age" by Mark Twain and Charles Dudley Warner, written in 1873. Now, that was as depressing a picture of American public life as I've ever read, corruption and decay everywhere. Worse than Rand's Atlas Shrugged.

[First, caveats: Not "peak oil" crisis; rather "peak oil" age or era or pasage.
Not noticeable scarcity; rather extinction.
Not our economy ... is due to collapse; rather 4 billion humans including 100 million Americans, heavily dependent on petroleum products for survival, might die.]

As for "not sure I can buy that" -- that's the point, oil is not there for you to choose to buy; to be sure: you can not buy that. No oil means no oil, and whether or not you are sure don't matter. In the most basic essence, Jack, only two data points are relevant for making up your mind. 1. How much oil on Earth? 2. At what rate are we drinking it? Simple numeric answers; what's so hard about researching them out? Well, for starters, in certain places (like where the answer is), to ask the questions can get you killed.

Chevron CEO bought ad space in NY Times, claiming 1 trillion barrels of oil are left on Earth. Consensus usage rate is 80-some mbpd (million barrels per day), oh, say 90 mbpd, call it 100 mbpd so it divides evenly into 1 trillion. Answer: about 30 years. Do you buy that? How's that working for your mortgage terms?

As for Peak America: I love this question. I find it easy to write for a man who thinks right, which means curious and open-minded.

Bill McDonald: There is a different perspective where additional information is given about WW II, namely it was a set-up, that 'war' was arranged, scheduled in advance to happen. Maybe even Pearl Harbor, (as in 'let it happen'), but really much earlier, when money was loaned to Hitler in a Jan.1933 meeting to pay wages to his private SS army, and to buy military buildup.
Here is the keystone reference book, Secrets of the Federal Reserve, by Eustace Mullins. In the preface material is explained how the book was published in 1952 and suppressed, (think: CIA), and finally circulated in 1985. So it wasn't a school textbook before 1985.
Anyway, Bill, I would have agreed with you -- Peak America after WW II -- until I read this book.

PanchoPdx: I agree with you -- Peak America ended ... one decade, the 1910's -- except my answer is a different year. Month and day. To me, your "Progressive Era" usage is misleading. My 'progressive era' is 1880 - 1900, fuzzy plus or minus. Woodrow Wilson, as a figurehead for a Progressive Era with the label chosen to draw on the sentiment for what by the 1910's was over and longed-for, (Wilson) served as a foil, a facade, a puppet, a Potemkin, for ruthless autocrats who had no 'progressive' intentions for society at all but figured that label could win votes for its connotation. Those autocrats "empowered the fed. to income tax" and "sent tens of thousands of young men to die" and "made drinking illegal" in the name of progressivism. They opposed the progressive League of Nations and the progressive labor unionization and the progressive universal suffrage (women's vote -- and maybe I'd say the women's vote was what passed the repeal of prohibition, 1933, not the enactment of it, 1920).

My basis for all this is the "Secrets" book material. As I understand it, E. Mullins lived in the Library of Congress for ten or twenty years and wrote the book citing the documentation there.

My nominated Peak America wasn't in America. The period was characterized in education-accomplished expressions like this:
'Behold the aristocratic criminals and oppose them, the class who denies people's political power, the class who defrauds the economy, the class who bribes and privately owns the judges, the police, the legislature, and the military which enstates the aristocrats by warring against and enslaving the people whose taxes pay the soldiers.'

The quote is a tad bit strained, being my interpretation of a computer translation of the original. In Italian. Italy's President Giacomo Matteotti, in a campaign speech against Mussolini's fascists, (Matteotti: "squadrismo"). Socialism flowered. Mussolini snuffed it. That flower was Peak Democracy. 1924. June 10, fascists abducted Matteotti and murdered him. June 12, Geo H W Bush was born and breathed his first breath of air full of the fascist black evil, and embodied it. August 12(?), Matteotti's mutilated body was found.

(The following is the link to the output of the translator where I got my citation. I don't know if it shows you the same as it showed me. As translated, "it" means "he" or "him," for example, and "I" means "one." Latin origins, Justinian Code ethos and all that -- get it? And incidentally, any 'Gen.Ten' voice here who does not know what the "X" stands for -- the number 'ten', after them comes 'Gen.XI' not "Y" -- likely hasn't much more substantive to contribute.)

Simply, my Peak America is the days, the weeks, the months, one or two years, before Bush Sinister was born. His incarnation was (is?) America's demise. And that summary is my own, distilled from this book : The Unauthorized Biography, by Webster G. Tarpley & Anton Chaitkin. Perhaps after you read it you could summarize it differently.

My version of the era's context goes something like this. (First there's my confession that the Montana Militia and other groups really obsessed with opposing the Fed.Reserve, always seemed uncredible to me ... until I read Mullins' "Secrets.") An elitist group of financiers met in secret on Jekyll Island in 1910 and invented the Fed.Reserve. The usual suspects: aged J.P.Morgan, Brown, Walker, Rothschild, Rockefeller, others, in assorted combinations, various venues, and especially one Warburg. (Today, in UBS/Warburg, cited here and thus: "After Enron's bankruptcy, UBS Warburg conveniently purchased Enron’s energy trading unit, the group that was the subject of much of the investigations directed against the defunct firm, especially the role of the trading unit in inflating energy costs in California ..."
(Same site includes: "WASHINGTON, DC -- August 25, 2005 -- WMR has obtained further paper trails linking George H. W. Bush's longtime mysterious Swiss German money mover (see July 24-25 article below) to a now defunct bank operated on behalf of Osama Bin Laden, his family, and some of his closest business associates." Set your brain on Stun if you're going there. Or here.)

So the bankers got together and invented the dollar. Our elected government does not 'make' dollars, the business was contracted out to the Fed.Reserve, a private concern, which 'makes' dollars for Fed.Reserve stakeholder's private profit. The set-up took awhile to set up, 1910 - 1920-plus, and smack dab in the middle of it all, (later, 1942, charged with war profiteering and trading with the enemy for financing Third Reich materiel), was Prescott Bush, father of the "vision thing" baby boy, born June 12, 1924, the spawn of anti-social, anti-democracy, anti-America fascist purpose.

The dates, in the interval 1923 - 26, mark the advent of mass media, as in broadcast radio. Elitists then (and now) opposed having media, in the sense of its information and news, available to the common unwashed 'masses.' Baseball and sitcoms: okay; news and information: not okay, that's for supremacists only.

Also a 'peak' development of the time, 1925, appeared in the Scopes trial of creationism vs. evolution. (Wikipedia and its links has good material about it.) IMO, the defining element was in the words of the (creationism prosecution's) attorney on the witness stand, under questioning by the (evolution) defense attorney to show an understanding of certain literal and factual contradictions in the Bible, the witness said: "I don't think about what I don't think about." (Rumsfeld: 'unknown unknowns.') Today we call them closed-minded ideologues or Christo-fascists, but it's the same thing.

And we, Peak America, did not prevail at trial and were wage-enslaved, over the years, by the secret autocrats' secret financings and they are still at it. If ever America recomposes its peak stature, (which stands on democracy, not petroleum), the psychopathic (superstitious) religious faction might loom large to shrink us back with enlarging spectres of our own fears, (e.g. "You can't live if you don't take the job you're offered?"), and we can never grow beyond until we overwhelm those wielding terrors at us, and knock them down, and evolve past their retardation.

Trying, convicting, and imprisoning Bush Sinister and cohorts for war crimes, in full Nuremberg regalia, and bulldozing the nucleus building in the federal conglomerate that has his name on it, (CIA headquarters), is a worthy step toward a farther peak.

All these years of 'national security' promotion by the mil.indus.complex Bush Sinister has been a designing figure in, have been sixty years of atrocity in the eyes of the founders who constituted us "to secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity," (60 atrocious peak-eroding years as other comments here also attest). The base-closing commission must "touch 'em all" and then call the game off, and send themselves to the showers.

'National security' bombs and bullets have not secured a single life and have unsecured and killed millions of lives. Only 'social security' secures our lives best, unifies us, establishes Justice, insures domestic tranquility, and promotes our general welfare. 'National security' secures the liberty's blessing for few, (the abled rich who were free to leave New Orleans, e.g.)

We, the people have no threatening enemy. We are brainwashed in mass media. Every enemy we ever imagined we had was one we created, an apparition, a spectre, a denominational 'haunt.' All the world's nations are in league, together without oil. We must ground the jet bombers, (no oil to fuel them), and beat them, (no oil to smelter them), into plowshares, (no oil for tractors), and resume to till the soil for our daily food.

Peak America is America secure in our society of, by, and for each other. Being socially secure is the security of the nation. A social security somewhat in the fashion of FDR's management -- the antithesis and target of Prescott Bush's hatred of public equality, masses, and democracy, objections virulently raised (shouting at the fireside radio reassuring against fear?), in the presence of 10-year-old Bush Sinister, committed for his father's approval to go at sociologic destruction unto his final breath.

In my opinion formed of wide reading.

Maybe I am too young to remember “Gen IX,” but I certainly never heard anyone refer to the post-X generation by “Gen XI,” here included. I guess only Tenskwatawa can substantively contribute to the debate. I say anyone who hasn't read the comment policy doesn't have anything substantive to contribute.

Um..."Generation X" is originally from a British study of teenagers in the 1960s, was later Billy Idol's first band name and then appropriated into a non-fiction book by Doug Coupland to describe those born in the 1960s and 1970s. In all cases, the "X" was meant to symbolize an unknown variable from algebra, NOT the roman numeral ten.

Not for me to tell Jack how to run things, but Tenskwatawa, you could have probably said all that on your own blog, where it could be properly ignored.

A lot of people have said that the answer lies in our schools, and I have to disagree. I think that the answer lies where it always has - within the home, and within the family unit. There is no institutional substitute for a traditional, loving family. Trusting the schools to teach our children what's right and wrong is a fool's hope, and an abdication of parental responsibility. All the more so now with moral relativity running rampant, and the idea of something being “right” or “wrong” being replaced by “allowed” or “against the (arbitrary) rules mandated by our fear of liability”.
What to do about it? I like the answer that was suggested above – tighten up the belt, live within our means, and invest in the future, by teaching our children, volunteering in our communities, and being active and helpful in our communities. That will pay great dividends.

Definitely definitely parents who kill tv and direct their children to engage with community -- starting with school: attend it, respect it.
- -
I actually like genXers. They do have talent and skills. After their fashion. There is another group younger than them, who I like, too, and who have their good qualities. Give or take.

One gave me something to learn. I didn't know about this book, Charles Hamblett and Jane Deverson's 1964 novel 'Generation X' portrays the children who would come of age in the closing years of the 20th century as apathetic and materialistic. And I was spelling Coupland wrong.

What I believed was that "Copeland's" book, (I haven't read), calculated ten generations of Americans from 1776 in 20-year 'generational' steps, making the Xth generation those born 1956-76. Who has read the book and can say if that's in it or not? 1956-76 agrees with "children who would come of age in the closing years of the 20th century."

As I had that, it made the 1936-56 'boomers' Gen IX, and the 1976-96 crowd would be Gen XI.

And I disagreed with it / Coupland, (or Hamblett and Deverson -- who knew?)

I say a generation is not 20 years. What do you say it is? And my dig was at any who never thought about it and don't have an answer: How long is a generation? Or, similarly: What are the dates of Gen X? What are the dates of boomers?

Without a knowledgeable answer from anyone, I made up one. A generation is 14 years, an average age of puberty and procreational equipment.

About 14 years is also the duration it takes Neptune, (related to sea water and amniotic fluid), to transit one astrology sign; and through twelve signs around its entire orbit, it takes about 165 years. (In 2009, Neptune for the first time returns to the position where it was discovered in 1846, at about 25 degrees Aquarius.)

And: 1942-56 Neptune in Libra = music, pharmacy, you got your boomers, rock 'n' roll, pharmaceuticals, (cured polio then),

1956-70 Neptune in Scorpio = genitals, secrecy, you got your Gen X, "free love", (they cherish their 'X' moniker for its 'secret' connotation).

1970-84 Neptune in Sagittarius = extremes, adventure, you got your extreme adventurers, (the oldest is 35 today, if surviving).

1984-98 Neptune in Capricorn = international, multilingual, you got your world wide web 'assumers.'

1998-2012 Neptune in Aquarius = inventors, knowledge, truth, idealism.

(I'm keeping this abbreviated.)

Some others: 1914-28 Neptune in Leo for everybody born in that interval, you got your Brokaw's "Greatest Generation" -- just ask any Leo.

1788-1802 Neptune in Scorpio again, (or 'before'), you got your Alien Sedition Act. Not too sexy but something about secrets.

1802-1816 Neptune in Sagittarius, Lewis & Clark's excellent adventure, 'road trip,' and a bit o' the old war of 1812.

1816-1830 Neptune in Capricorn before, that'd be Monroe Doctrine claiming half the world is America's.

1830-1844 Neptune in Aquarius before. I don't know, first photography, first telegraph, those kind of mattered. The history of 1830-44 is what's repeating these days, 1998-2012, if you'd like to know where to look to see a preview. (Hey, but you said it was discovered in Aquarius in 1846, now you say it finished Aquarius in 1844. Oh, there's some rounding-off approximating going on.)

There's much more, as you probably sense.

See, I didn't really think there was a Gen XI. But then, I don't think there's a Gen X. I think there's another 14-year Neptune in Scorpio batch, just like the ones before, every 168 years (about).

I also learned when I googled Coupland that his latest book is "Hey, Nostradamus."

(Nostradamus, 1503, Neptune in Capricorn but, of course, nobody knew it was out there, nevermind where. Wrote his "10 Centuries" -- ten chapters of a hundred quatrains -- in the 1540s, published anonymously 1555. Used planet cycles for his 'predictions' written in code because the Catholic Church burned astrologers then, and they still creep people out today and they're not too welcome, (Catholics, I mean -- see where your mind went?). I read Nostradamus and only saw two 'hits': predicting 10 days would be removed from the calendar, and Gregory did that in 1582; and predicting the 'new lands' discovered would be called WUSA, which I call close enough. I didn't find any of Al Stewart's verses on 'Year of the Cat' album anywhere in Nostradamus, and I disagree with mostly everything else I've read someone says Nostradamus said. But he was way cool.)
(I use code in my writing, too. Same reason as N. used it: There are closed minds who don't want anyone's opened. I've noted in other places, one example of code is Tenskwatawa, which means "the president elected in a year ending in zero does not survive his term of office." Tecumseh's Curse. 2000 is the last incidence. 2020 and later is uncursed.)

In parting, thank our host -- Mr. B., you're kind to scholars, you oughta be a professor. I won't go on about your airtime Sunday, but maybe I could. Just this: George Taylor predicted a "wet" and "mild" winter coming up, right? I disagree. I predict "mild to warmer" and "dry," No skiing until January and ends in Feb. Remarkably and severely low snow pack and serious drought anticipation next spring looking toward summer. My basis for this is Saturn in Leo and Jupiter in Scorpio, and tho' Scorpio is supposed to be wet there are exceptions going on this time. The pattern is not good for thunderheads and heads of state. But it looks to be fortunate, as in large money, and big dreams, for about the next 10 months for those born 1956-70.
My season-ahead weather forecasts have been better than Taylor's about half the time for the last ten years, and equal with his the rest of the time. Also, sometimes I'm wrong. It's in writing now, let's grade it in April.

Thank you, Jack.

(I'm keeping this abbreviated.)

Could have fooled me.

Also, your timing on Generations is completely wrong. Baby Boomers are largely thought to be born from 1946-1964. Some others (Strauss and Howe, notably) say 1943-1961. No one says Baby Boomers were born in 1936.

I have read Coupland's book -- nowhere does he mention the roman numeral 10, or this 20 subdividision of years, or this insane (yes, insane) Neptune Capricorn Aquarius B.S.

My recommendations would be to:

1) Actually read the source material you claim to "know" before insulting others
2) Read Strauss and Howe's "Generations" (really the best book on the subject out there)
3) Quit having so much coffee at 3 am.

As an admitted baby boomer (born 1954) I just want to point out a couple of things.

In the early 1970's we baby boomers started the environmental movement. I know. I was there and I was active in it. If you think the environment is a mess today, you should travel back in time to about 1968 and have a look. The Willamette was a toxic dump that you couldn't wet your feet in and the skies over Portland were blue smog. Go down to the Willamette on a nice, sunny day now and witness countless people water skiing. Unheard of before 1970.

We baby boomers started the bicycle movement. I know, I was there and I was active. Drivers used to throw beer bottles at us and try to run us off the road. We perservered.

We baby boomers were the first to question traditional authority in this country. It was over a war in Viet Nam. Never again would the population take at face value that which was doled out by the government. We baby boomers made that happen.

We baby boomers started the recycling movement and were instrumental in Oregon's bottle bill, the first of its kind in the nation. We baby boomers saw the value in tearing up an ugly piece of macadam (Harbor Drive) and creating a beautiful greenway on the westside of the Willamette.

We baby boomers were the first to embrace racial tolerance, feminism and acceptance of gays and lesbians.

We were the first to suggest that the Ozzie and Harriet lifestyle might not be for everybody.

That's the legacy we've given you. I hope you will be able to build on it.


As a lawyer/blogger, I get
to be a member of:

In Vino Veritas

Lange, Pinot Gris 2015
Kiona, Lemberger 2014
Willamette Valley, Pinot Gris 2015
Aix, Rosé de Provence 2016
MarchigĂĽe, Cabernet 2013
Inazío Irruzola, Getariako Txakolina Rosé 2015
Maso Canali, Pinot Grigio 2015
Campo Viejo, Rioja Reserva 2011
Kirkland, Côtes de Provence Rosé 2016
Cantele, Salice Salentino Reserva 2013
Whispering Angel, Côtes de Provence Rosé 2013
Avissi, Prosecco
Cleto Charli, Lambrusco di Sorbara Secco, Vecchia Modena
Pique Poul, Rosé 2016
Edmunds St. John, Bone-Jolly Rosé 2016
Stoller, Pinot Noir Rosé 2016
Chehalem, Inox Chardonnay 2015
The Four Graces, Pinot Gris 2015
GascĂłn, Colosal Red 2013
Cardwell Hill, Pinot Gris 2015
L'Ecole No. 41, Merlot 2013
Della Terra, Anonymus
Willamette Valley, Dijon Clone Chardonnay 2013
Wraith, Cabernet, Eidolon Estate 2012
Januik, Red 2015
Tomassi, Valpolicella, Rafaél, 2014
Sharecropper's Pinot Noir 2013
Helix, Pomatia Red Blend 2013
La Espera, Cabernet 2011
Campo Viejo, Rioja Reserva 2011
Villa Antinori, Toscana 2013
Locations, Spanish Red Wine
Locations, Argentinian Red Wine
La Antigua Clásico, Rioja 2011
Shatter, Grenache, Maury 2012
Argyle, Vintage Brut 2011
Abacela, Vintner's Blend #16 Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2014
Benton Hill, Pinot Gris 2015
Primarius, Pinot Gris 2015
Januik, Merlot 2013
Napa Cellars, Cabernet 2013
J. Bookwalter, Protagonist 2012
LAN, Rioja Edicion Limitada 2011
Beaulieu, Cabernet, Rutherford 2009
Denada Cellars, Cabernet, Maipo Valley 2014
MarchigĂĽe, Cabernet, Colchagua Valley 2013
Oberon, Cabernet 2014
Hedges, Red Mountain 2012
Balboa, Rose of Grenache 2015
Ontañón, Rioja Reserva 2015
Three Horse Ranch, Pinot Gris 2014
Archery Summit, Vireton Pinot Gris 2014
Nelms Road, Merlot 2013
Chateau Ste. Michelle, Pinot Gris 2014
Conn Creek, Cabernet, Napa 2012
Conn Creek, Cabernet, Napa 2013
Villa Maria, Sauvignon Blanc 2015
G3, Cabernet 2013
Chateau Smith, Cabernet, Washington State 2014
Abacela, Vintner's Blend #16
Willamette Valley, Rose of Pinot Noir, Whole Clusters 2015
Albero, Bobal Rose 2015
Ca' del Baio Barbaresco Valgrande 2012
Goodfellow, Reserve Pinot Gris, Clover 2014
Lugana, San Benedetto 2014
Wente, Cabernet, Charles Wetmore 2011
La Espera, Cabernet 2011
King Estate, Pinot Gris 2015
Adelsheim, Pinot Gris 2015
Trader Joe's, Pinot Gris, Willamette Valley 2015
La Vite Lucente, Toscana Red 2013
St. Francis, Cabernet, Sonoma 2013
Kendall-Jackson, Pinot Noir, California 2013
Beaulieu, Cabernet, Napa Valley 2013
Erath, Pinot Noir, Estate Selection 2012
Abbot's Table, Columbia Valley 2014
Intrinsic, Cabernet 2014
Oyster Bay, Pinot Noir 2010
Occhipinti, SP68 Bianco 2014
Layer Cake, Shiraz 2013
Desert Wind, Ruah 2011
WillaKenzie, Pinot Gris 2014
Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2013
Des Amis, Rose 2014
Dunham, Trautina 2012
RoxyAnn, Claret 2012
Del Ri, Claret 2012
Stoppa, Emilia, Red 2004
Primarius, Pinot Noir 2013
Domaines Bunan, Bandol Rose 2015
Albero, Bobal Rose 2015
Deer Creek, Pinot Gris 2015
Beaulieu, Rutherford Cabernet 2013
Archery Summit, Vireton Pinot Gris 2014
King Estate, Pinot Gris, Backbone 2014
Oberon, Napa Cabernet 2013
Apaltagua, Envero Carmenere Gran Reserva 2013
Chateau des Arnauds, Cuvee des Capucins 2012
Nine Hats, Red 2013
Benziger, Cabernet, Sonoma 2012
Roxy Ann, Claret 2012
Januik, Merlot 2012
Conundrum, White 2013
St. Francis, Sonoma Cabernet 2012

The Occasional Book

Phil Stanford - Rose City Vice
Kenneth R. Feinberg - What is Life Worth?
Kent Haruf - Our Souls at Night
Peter Carey - True History of the Kelly Gang
Suzanne Collins - The Hunger Games
Amy Stewart - Girl Waits With Gun
Philip Roth - The Plot Against America
Norm Macdonald - Based on a True Story
Christopher Buckley - Boomsday
Ryan Holiday - The Obstacle is the Way
Ruth Sepetys - Between Shades of Gray
Richard Adams - Watership Down
Claire Vaye Watkins - Gold Fame Citrus
Markus Zusak - I am the Messenger
Anthony Doerr - All the Light We Cannot See
James Joyce - Dubliners
Cheryl Strayed - Torch
William Golding - Lord of the Flies
Saul Bellow - Mister Sammler's Planet
Phil Stanford - White House Call Girl
John Kaplan & Jon R. Waltz - The Trial of Jack Ruby
Kent Haruf - Eventide
David Halberstam - Summer of '49
Norman Mailer - The Naked and the Dead
Maria DermoČ—t - The Ten Thousand Things
William Faulkner - As I Lay Dying
Markus Zusak - The Book Thief
Christopher Buckley - Thank You for Smoking
William Shakespeare - Othello
Joseph Conrad - Heart of Darkness
Bill Bryson - A Short History of Nearly Everything
Cheryl Strayed - Tiny Beautiful Things
Sara Varon - Bake Sale
Stephen King - 11/22/63
Paul Goldstein - Errors and Omissions
Mark Twain - A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court
Steve Martin - Born Standing Up: A Comic's Life
Beverly Cleary - A Girl from Yamhill, a Memoir
Kent Haruf - Plainsong
Hope Larson - A Wrinkle in Time, the Graphic Novel
Rudyard Kipling - Kim
Peter Ames Carlin - Bruce
Fran Cannon Slayton - When the Whistle Blows
Neil Young - Waging Heavy Peace
Mark Bego - Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul (2012 ed.)
Jenny Lawson - Let's Pretend This Never Happened
J.D. Salinger - Franny and Zooey
Charles Dickens - A Christmas Carol
Timothy Egan - The Big Burn
Deborah Eisenberg - Transactions in a Foreign Currency
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. - Slaughterhouse Five
Kathryn Lance - Pandora's Genes
Cheryl Strayed - Wild
Fyodor Dostoyevsky - The Brothers Karamazov
Jack London - The House of Pride, and Other Tales of Hawaii
Jack Walker - The Extraordinary Rendition of Vincent Dellamaria
Colum McCann - Let the Great World Spin
Niccolò Machiavelli - The Prince
Harper Lee - To Kill a Mockingbird
Emma McLaughlin & Nicola Kraus - The Nanny Diaries
Brian Selznick - The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Sharon Creech - Walk Two Moons
Keith Richards - Life
F. Sionil Jose - Dusk
Natalie Babbitt - Tuck Everlasting
Justin Halpern - S#*t My Dad Says
Mark Herrmann - The Curmudgeon's Guide to Practicing Law
Barry Glassner - The Gospel of Food
Phil Stanford - The Peyton-Allan Files
Jesse Katz - The Opposite Field
Evelyn Waugh - Brideshead Revisited
J.K. Rowling - Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
David Sedaris - Holidays on Ice
Donald Miller - A Million Miles in a Thousand Years
Mitch Albom - Have a Little Faith
C.S. Lewis - The Magician's Nephew
F. Scott Fitzgerald - The Great Gatsby
William Shakespeare - A Midsummer Night's Dream
Ivan Doig - Bucking the Sun
Penda Diakité - I Lost My Tooth in Africa
Grace Lin - The Year of the Rat
Oscar Hijuelos - Mr. Ives' Christmas
Madeline L'Engle - A Wrinkle in Time
Steven Hart - The Last Three Miles
David Sedaris - Me Talk Pretty One Day
Karen Armstrong - The Spiral Staircase
Charles Larson - The Portland Murders
Adrian Wojnarowski - The Miracle of St. Anthony
William H. Colby - Long Goodbye
Steven D. Stark - Meet the Beatles
Phil Stanford - Portland Confidential
Rick Moody - Garden State
Jonathan Schwartz - All in Good Time
David Sedaris - Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
Anthony Holden - Big Deal
Robert J. Spitzer - The Spirit of Leadership
James McManus - Positively Fifth Street
Jeff Noon - Vurt

Road Work

Miles run year to date: 113
At this date last year: 155
Total run in 2016: 155
In 2015: 271
In 2014: 401
In 2013: 257
In 2012: 129
In 2011: 113
In 2010: 125
In 2009: 67
In 2008: 28
In 2007: 113
In 2006: 100
In 2005: 149
In 2004: 204
In 2003: 269

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