Melvyn Magree

Content By This Contributor:

Wed. Jan. 6th, 2016


Melvyn Magree

Wed. Dec. 30th, 2015

When does a new year really start?

Melvyn Magree

Shouldn’t the New Year really start on the Winter Solstice?  In 2015 this was December 22.  How did our calendar put the start of the new year about ten days later?

Thu. Dec. 24th, 2015

There really are only two religions

Melvyn Magree

you will find that are only two basic belief systems: generosity to others and narrow systems of “we are right and you are wrong”.  And all the major religions have many generous believers and far too many hateful believers.

Wed. Dec. 16th, 2015

A Note from Scrooge

Melvyn Magree

I once was a mall Santa.  That was quite an adventure, but I never did it again or wanted to.  Believe it or not, I was told I was the best Santa at that mall.  Apparently, some of the others weren’t good actors or just didn’t like little kids.

Thu. Dec. 10th, 2015

Bombs away!

Melvyn Magree

Unfortunately, the answer is not blowing in the wind from the mouths of politicians around the world.  They blow out phrases like “defense”, “saving jobs”, and “gun rights”.

Wed. Dec. 2nd, 2015

Three views of economics

Melvyn Magree

He thinks that if we have a “living economy for a living earth” that life will be so much better for everybody.  My thought is that it ain’t going to happen.

Tue. Nov. 24th, 2015

Are “conservatives” the lackeys of Daesh?

Melvyn Magree

What’s this Daesh?  It is the Arabic term for the group that calls itself the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), the Islamic State in the Levant (ISIL), or just the Islamic State (IS). 

Wed. Nov. 11th, 2015

Sashaying Along with More Clichés

Melvyn Magree

How do we know that each and every “legitimate” gun owner is a “law-abiding citizen”?  We don’t. 

Wed. Oct. 14th, 2015

Slicing and dicing clichés

Melvyn Magree

“Two party system” is used almost as if it were were written in the Constitution.  It is just a fiction of convenience. If you think about it, we had a de facto “three party system” in the middle of the Twentieth Century. 

Wed. Oct. 7th, 2015

Pride goeth before the fall

Melvyn Magree

Pride is a good thing when one has created something unique or solved a difficult problem.

Wed. Sep. 9th, 2015

Teetering on the edge of the abyss

Melvyn Magree

I apologize to my dozen readers for not submitting a column for last week.  I was still in Internet purgatory and could not give you any further information about my accommodation to our surprises with cordless access. 

Wed. Aug. 26th, 2015

Clawing out of the Abyss

Melvyn Magree

As of this writing, we are into week two without cellular access on our iPhones (See “Cutting the cord and falling into the abyss” in last week’s Reader).

Thu. Aug. 20th, 2015

Cutting the cord and falling into the abyss

Melvyn Magree

A digression on telecommunication taxes and fees: the telecommunication companies (telcos) can’t give these accurately because the vary widely from locale to locale and narrowly from month to month.

Thu. Aug. 13th, 2015

Why buy a ticket to the Bluesfest?

Melvyn Magree

Even as a so-so singer I’ve been able to project my voice quite well.  I remember once practicing in the farthest corner of the social hall at the UU Church on College Street and having somebody in the garage tell me they could hear my voice.

Wed. Jul. 29th, 2015

The Misunderstood Constitution

Melvyn Magree

Interestingly, some of the same people who want their Freedom of Religion want to deny Freedom of Religion to others.  For example, mandatory public school prayer.  What form should a public prayer take to satisfy all faiths?

Thu. Jul. 23rd, 2015

Writing to editors, authors, and other public figures

Melvyn Magree

This article was “triggered” in part because of a letter I recently received and in part by the email conversation I mentioned last week with Michael Mann, author of “The Hockey Stick”.

Wed. Jul. 15th, 2015

Capitalists vs. scientists

Melvyn Magree

Time and time again, the deceit is on the part of the deniers, and very few reporters follow up with the truth.  Very few of these follow-ups make it to the front pages or opening news bites. 

Thu. Jul. 9th, 2015

Audacious amount of audio appreciation

Melvyn Magree

I sketched out a couple of paragraphs on what I enjoy listening to now, but then memories flooded in about the wide varieties of audio experience I have had during my life.

Wed. Jul. 1st, 2015

Whose independence is being taken by who?

Melvyn Magree

How did we get to this situation where we have lost our independence to large corporations funding elections as if they were persons?

Wed. Jun. 24th, 2015

Biting off more than my chipper can chew

Melvyn Magree

“If you want moose, clear cut!”  We did see a few moose tracks about that time, but we haven’t seen any for years.  It may be wishful thinking, but I think I saw a single moose track on one of our trails a week or two ago.

Wed. Jun. 17th, 2015

From my clippings file

Melvyn Magree

Have you considered that the wealthy wield much more power than kings of old?  Except they don’t need armies of soldiers to stay in power, just armies of lawyers and lobbyists.

Thu. Jun. 11th, 2015

Freedom to do what?

Melvyn Magree

Many people and corporations complain that their freedoms are being taken away by this law or that law which restricts certain behavior.  Are these smoke screens or do they have a point?  Let’s look at a few cases.

Wed. Jun. 3rd, 2015

Up in the air about being up in the air

Melvyn Magree

One memorable sight in Rome was standing on the ground watching a 747 overhead.  Would I really want to fly on such a humongous plane?

Thu. May. 28th, 2015

0 in 2050? 0 in 2100?

Melvyn Magree

Zero nuclear weapons in 2050?  Zero armies in 2100?  Impossible?  No, but improbable.  On the other hand, if we don’t set goals, we might not even make minor steps.

Thu. May. 21st, 2015

Who is doing what social engineering?

Melvyn Magree

For some reason those who complain about their cars “being taken away” don’t seem to realize that the more other people take public transit the more room there is for them on the freeways.

Wed. May. 13th, 2015

The United States is NOT a Christian Nation

Melvyn Magree

“Christian” or “Christianity” do not appear in it or the Constitution.  The closest to a religious statement in either is “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator

Thu. Apr. 30th, 2015

The Magical Marketplace can be malevolent

Melvyn Magree

Once upon a very bad time, market forces determined that a slave should work as many hours as the master required.  These masters were so determined that they were right, they were willing to wage a bloody war to protect their interests.

Wed. Apr. 22nd, 2015

It is around here someplace!

Melvyn Magree

Whenever one of us can’t find something, we say, “It is around here someplace!” This has not always been effective in retrieving a lost object.

Wed. Apr. 15th, 2015

Do we really have a five-party “system”?

Melvyn Magree

Many commentators write about the “two-party system” as if it were enshrined in the Constitution.  Actually, the writers of the Constitution feared factionalism. 

Wed. Apr. 8th, 2015

Wild about wild animals

Melvyn Magree

The people of the world seem to be going wild with various ideologies that are harmful to others, and I need a break from writing about these foibles.  So, why not write about wild animals I’ve encountered?

Wed. Apr. 1st, 2015

The myths of fighting terrorism

Melvyn Magree

Just what is terrorism?  Governments generally define it as lethal attacks on civilians or governments, often perpetrated by a small number of people. 

Thu. Mar. 26th, 2015

Corporations and governments: can’t have one without the other

Melvyn Magree

Considering some of the shouting, one might think that politics has divided into two camps: government is bad and corporations are for the common good, or corporations are greedy and government is for the common good.

Wed. Mar. 11th, 2015

Hubris is ruinous

Melvyn Magree

Scott Walker is one who is showing overreaching pride and arrogance in his abilities.