Sen. Orrin Hatch on Cuba: “We Need to Stay Enemies.”


Sen. Orrin Hatch Responds to President’s Cuba Announcement

“The President’s decision to begin talks to normalize relations with Cuba is another example of his administration’s habit of appeasing our adversaries”

Washington, D.C., — Senator Orrin G. Hatch, Senior Republican in the United States Senate, issued the following statement following the President’s announcement that he would seek to normalize relations with Cuba:

“The President’s decision to begin talks to normalize relations with Cuba is another example of his administration’s habit of appeasing our adversaries. Time and again, President Obama has predicated his foreign policy on the notion that if we simply accommodate the demands of troublesome regimes, they will cease their disturbing behavior.

Even more disturbing, the President’s announcement constitutes a fundamental shift from our decades old policy, reaffirmed by both Republican and Democrat administrations, to isolate the Cuban regime due to its repression of the Cuban people.  It is beyond doubt that the Cuban regime continues to stifle democracy and violate fundamental human rights.  Like many of my colleagues, I remain committed to a Cuba policy that continues to place pressure on the Castro regime until the Cuban people are free.”


Snow Emergency in Saint Paul. A Minnesota Idyll.


Snow emergencies are rather common in Saint Paul;

As common as an ice rink or a heated hockey brawl.

Snow is not a problem for the hardy Saint Paulite;

It’s the on-street parking edicts that destroy their appetite.


A certain depth of snowfall, with a secret rate assigned,

Triggers laws and statutes that are never quite defined.

You can park your car on only one side of the street,

But which side is the right one is as clear as muddy feet!


This last emergency the city towed so many wrecks

The impound lot is only taking cash – no cards or checks.

My advice, if you are living in Saint Paul, of course,

Is sell your car and get yourself an inexpensive horse.

Kindle Unlimited.


Since Kindle went Unlimited a multitude of writers

Have taken up their cudgels and become ferocious fighters.

They claim the rates that Amazon is paying them are scanty,

And so they’d better pony up and start to raise the ante.


For writers need to eat and drink, and have a place to stay –

Even if they’re layabouts who scribble all the day.

It isn’t easy to produce non-fiction or a fable

When you’re worried how to pay for kitchen chairs and table.


The glut of e-books Amazon has placed at bargain discount

Has caused all kinds of writers to drop pens and reins, and dismount.

While others, more pragmatic, have adjusted their routines

And ladle out their stuff in quantity, like pork & beans.


The Cheque is in the Mail.


Britain owes me money and I wanna get it back.

No gilt-edged bonds or sureties, just gimme cold, hard jack!

My grandpapa’s great grandpapa was looted by the Brits

In 1812 while sitting in his cabin eating grits.


Those redcoats took his candles and his wardrobe and a cow,

Saying it was payback for the rout of Gen’ral Howe.

I figure that with int’rest I am due a million pounds

(if it lacks a couple shillings I will not make any sounds).


I expect my payoff quickly, now that int’rest rates are flat;

The South Sea Bubble’s nothing when compared to grandpa’s hat!

Exchequer flunkies, listen!  If I ask my Uncle Sam

To call on you for welshing you will be in quite a jam!



The Emerald Ash Borer.


The emerald ash borer was once spotted in a tree

In a park that fronted some important property.

State officials gathered to investigate the ash

Wherein the bug was burrowing and leaving lots of trash.


They sprayed the tree with benzoate, then chopped it down as well,

In hopes the bug would take the hint and go elsewhere to dwell.

But when the purple boxes showed the virid beetle staying,

Authorities got flamethrowers, while ministers were praying.


Great stands of Fraxinus were burnt, and firewood embargoed.

To eat the bug they did import all kinds of wasps and horned toad.

At last in desperation they uprooted every tree

In the state, a borer-less landscape to guarantee.


The emerald ash borer is no longer a concern;

They have taken passage to a beer garden in Berne.

We will celebrate with tambourine, viol and harp –

And then go back to killing off those jumping Asian carp!




This poem is brought to you by Nye’s Polonaise Room — featuring the best darn food in Nordeast Minneapolis!

The Theater of Seasons in Minnesota.


In Minnesota, weather is the subject of debate

By ev’ryone who’s blessed (or cursed) to live within the state.

The downward trend of temp’rature is sure to cause alarm,

And cabin fever sends so many to the funny farm.


And then a summer cloudburst will bring moisture and a chance

That a quick tornado will blow off your linen pants!

The autumn leaves are gorgeous as they pile up on your lawn.

And in your rusty gutters they do multiply and spawn.


The reason I pass over spring is simple as can be;

In Minnesota it is merely rank mythology!

The ‘theater’ of seasons we enjoy sure takes its toll,

And ought to be relabeled in the French as ‘Grand Guignol’.

Hockey in Arizona?


A hockey puck in Arizona seems almost a vice,

When you stop to think how hard it is to make good ice.

In a country shimmering with torrid sun and heat,

A Zamboni’s as out of place as rattle snakes with feet.


But there are hardy sojourners from Canada who claim

That Arizona is THE place to play a hockey game.

They train their sons to body check and be a prime goaltender;

How to take a slap shot, and a left wing lock to render.


But where to find a hockey coach in all this sand and cacti?

Competition’s very keen, and isn’t very black-tie.

The money spent on hockey by these parents is outrageous;

But then, the folly of the sport has always been contagious.

The Last of the Lutefisk.


A thousand years from now when archaeologists discover

The last remaining lutefisk, around it they will hover;

Trying to determine what its purpose was and why

People kept it in their homes like some kind of bonsai.


They’ll analyze a sample, and discover it is fish.

Then they’ll try to duplicate it in a petri dish.

And when they’ve grown a slab of it they’ll quickly realize

A Frankensteinish monster they have caused now to arise!


The scandal is tremendous, and the government will swoop

Down upon that lutefisk with an army troop.

They’ll fry it and they’ll bake it and they’ll even drown it, too,

In some melted butter or an ordinary roux.


Then a soldier tastes it and decides he must declare

That it might be edible if eaten on a dare.

But he was told twas insubordination to be clever,

And so at Yucca Mountain they did bury it forever.

Happy Kwanzaa!


December 26, 2014 is


The week-long celebration of Kwanzaa begins today! Send free Kwanzaa eCards to friends and family in honor of the occasion. This holiday was created by Dr. Maulana Karenga in 1966 to honor African American heritage. It reflects upon and celebrates seven principles: unity, self-determination, collective work and responsibility, cooperative economics, purpose, creativity, and faith.

On each day of the celebration, a candle is lit on the Kinara. Today, on the first day of Kwanzaa, a black candle is lit to symbolize the people. To the left of the black candle are three red candles, representing the people’s struggles. To the right of the black candle are three green candles, symbolizing the people’s hope for the future. The candles are lit from left to right, one candle for each day of the celebration.

Celebrate African American culture, and enjoy the festive meals and gift-giving! We wish you a Joyous Kwanzaa!

The Days of Easy Water; A Minnesota Idyll.

Whether it is White Bear Lake or Minnehaha Creek;

Water, water ev’rywhere but not a drop to leak!

The aquifers are shrinking and the dripping faucet makes

This the Land of Ten Thousand Disappearing Lakes.

Cut your shower short and do not brush your teeth and dawdle;

Ice cubes are a luxury and hot tubs we’ll not coddle!

Ecology demands that we become a desert state

When it comes to people (while the fishies procreate).

You will need a permit when you use your garden hose.

Go down to the riverbank when you must wash your clothes.

Anyone who wastes a drop is labeled an assassin.

The days of easy water are as dead as Harold Stassen!