Blaine for County Executive

BY COLUMNISTS

| Steven R. Berryman | Chris Cavey | Joe Charlebois | Guest Columnist | Harry M. Covert | Patricia A. Kelly | Jill King | Earl 'Rocky' Mackintosh | Tom McLaughlin | Roy Meachum | Zachary Peters | Cindy A. Rose | John W. Ashbury | Blaine R. Young |

DOCUMENTS


The Tentacle


Steven R. Berryman

August 4, 2014
Of Morality and Righteousness: Immigration debate keeps paying-off
Steven R. Berryman

“But they are all good people.” All of our ancestors were immigrants as well, right; so why are the bigoted, protectionist, redneck pigs continuing to fight against yet another wave of foreign-born people coming to America without portfolio?


July 21, 2014
Walmart* Shopping Malaise; One Bad Day
Steven R. Berryman

Walmart* is clearly the unequalled titan of retail. Producer of $473 billion dollars in revenue in fiscal year 2014 alone, it remains unequaled as major suction for the US dollar. About $5 a share in value is documented. My recent consumer experience told me that they are not plowing much of that back into the customer experience!


July 7, 2014
Of Management Theory and Related Musings
Steven R. Berryman

Management theory covers how we control and organize behaviors through the good auspices of coworkers and underlings or constituents; both theory and practice have come under scrutiny as the world devolves around us, and the “new normal” seems like it’s going to stick.


June 23, 2014
Various investment strategies for 2014
Steven R. Berryman

Many equate “investment strategies” with immediate wealth or other personal gain; I propose that we begin to take the much broader view in this matter to include ways that we spend our time observing happenstance in the world around us, especially including longer term benefits to next generations, or even spanning political outcomes.


June 2, 2014
Taxing Our Way to Prosperity?
Steven R. Berryman

Maryland is not unique to uber combined taxation; we are brothers with New York and New Jersey in this respect, with over half of all income taken away, on average. The force of law allows this to be so.


May 12, 2014
Gloria’s Digital Demise via Personal Passcodes
Steven R. Berryman

 

Her life seemed perfect. Gloria (not her real name) had it all together. Cars were paid for, great gardener and philanthropist. She had money in the bank, retirement strategy, and her bills even paid themselves automatically online.


April 28, 2014
The Consumer Economy and Trends 2014
Steven R. Berryman

The landscape of warfare for the almighty consumer dollar, especially in household goods, has never been so stacked in favor of the merchandise chasing consumers. For starters, there are too few customers chasing too much furniture, electronics, and other goods.


April 14, 2014
An Ode to the Willfully Disenfranchised
Steven R. Berryman

It is amazing to see the willfully disenfranchised among us continue to complain about their circumstances, and then surrender or flee. The freedom of choice abounding in what remains of America includes “the Freedom of Ignorance”...the freedom to allow heads to remain in sand, ostrich-like.


March 31, 2014
Beliefs That Separate and Beliefs That Affirm
Steven R. Berryman

A belief system keeps us whole, and contains much of who we are and where we are as a human being. This changes over time, and as they congeal through the dynamic maturation process, we tend to both self-identify, and clutch onto them even more. For better or for worse.


March 17, 2014
The dark side of “Social Media”
Steven R. Berryman

Last week I had the opportunity to tell my story of engagement with the social-media domain in a column called Amplifying on the Social Media phenomenon. That column covered the upside and opportunities that I found along the way. This one covers the down-side.


March 10, 2014
Amplifying on the social media phenomenon
Steven R. Berryman

Social media is many things to many people. When a friend recently asked me why I invested so much time delving into it, (and essentially, didn’t I have anything better to do!) I decided to finally pen the explanation of my methods and motives.


February 24, 2014
As Frederick becomes Rockville, Rockville becomes New Jersey
Steven R. Berryman

The Rockville, Maryland, of my youth was really what Frederick is today. The landscape was farms rolling into folded suburbs. Beautiful rolling country punctuated it with bedroom communities. Today growth is the issue they share in common, with varied plans and varied results.


February 17, 2014
To all the presidents I’ve loved before
Steven R. Berryman

The name President’s Day itself is an amalgamation, if not an abomination, of what was at one time George Washington’s Birthday, plus that of Lincoln’s. Some politically correct federal holiday-name-maker adjusted the name to fit the needs of bureaucratic three-day weekends, school calendars, and retailers alike.


February 3, 2014
Terrified by Terror-Mongers – Football Edition
Steven R. Berryman

Dateline: Frederick, MD, where I sit quietly anticipating the Super Bowl and the cute TV ads and sideshows. All manner of hype is used to insure – but not assure – an audience with so much potential for cash outlay. Way too much hype about terrorist threats…


January 20, 2014
Walking Through Airports
Steven R. Berryman

Flew into Miami Beach BOAC, didn’t get to sleep last night…well, it wasn’t quite like that old iconic Beatles tune had it way back in the day; my business trip to Indianapolis wasn’t that rushed but did include sushi in Charlotte despite a destination of Baltimore.


January 13, 2014
A Variety of “Failure Modes”
Steven R. Berryman

“Failure mode” is an electronics-based term used to describe a solid-state set of affairs in which a particular device does not work, is disabled, or otherwise operating outside of its design parameters. Over the past weeks and months, we have had many sets of events in other fields where the term can also be fairly applied.


January 6, 2014
The “what’s in & what’s out grab-bag” for 2014
Steven R. Berryman

Stay ahead of the learning-curve this year; start on an informed basis so you don’t get left-behind in trends, what’s happening, and changes to our landscape. To operate in our complex world, one has to begin paying attention...sometime!


December 30, 2013
2013 Words and Phrases in Review
Steven R. Berryman

Words matter, and 2013 was no different in that respect (is something you earn.) The choices and usages, plus those newly added can exemplify the current insanity (is doing the same thing over and over again, expecting different results.)


December 23, 2013
An irreverent but paranoid Christmas poem
Steven R. Berryman

’TWAS the night before the night before Christmas, and all through

the House (and Senate and White House),


December 16, 2013
A liar’s holiday carol
Steven R. Berryman

On the First Day of Christmas, a true liar sent to me: A partridge and healthcare for free. Well, he came through on the bird, anyway, but it was a turkey…


December 9, 2013
Amazon’s Drones Just The Start
Steven R. Berryman

Got out the 10-gauge shotgun for fun. Sittin’ on the porch looking for those plastic whirly-gig things; dropping little packages of robot-poo onto my neighbor’s doorsteps. I’m told that they are “delivery drones.” Just shot me one.


November 25, 2013
The Roots of Anger
Steven R. Berryman

The anger of our times is born of unrequited frustrations; when goals, hopes and needs are simultaneously frustrated, and one cannot process the reasons that they persist, this causes the latent anger to bloom and flourish.


November 18, 2013
Dear Liberal Obamacare apologists
Steven R. Berryman

Even though Dr. Charles Krauthammer has decided that the demise of ACA/Obamacare will constitute the death of the key component of liberalism – giving away other people’s money – I still want to congratulate the goals of healthcare reform.


November 11, 2013
If you like it….Well, nevermind!
Steven R. Berryman

The political cartoon goes something like this: The Prez: “If you like your healthcare plan and doctor, you can keep ‘em.” Unhappy looking constituent: “But, Mr. President, they cancelled my plan!” The Prez: “Well then you must not have liked your plan.”


November 4, 2013
Still Waiting to be saved
Steven R. Berryman

All of America is waiting to be saved – saved from the “not knowing” aspects of the unknowable economic slide – saved from not knowing how much Obamacare will cost – saved from the political deadlock of two parties clutching each other in a death spiral, like a pair of mountain climbers falling off a cliff connected by their rope.


October 28, 2013
The Business of Obamacare Fails the Business Test
Steven R. Berryman

Democrat Congressman John Delaney from Maryland just went on record expressing his businessman’s perspective on the “Obamacare roll-out.” A roll-out is an insider term for bringing a product or service to market for the first time.


October 21, 2013
Benefits of EBT Card Go Haywire
Steven R. Berryman

I’m used to shopping at Walmart every few weeks to pick up my staple food items at very good prices. I pay cash with a financial instrument I shall call “a debit card,” as when I use it like a credit card, cash – that I earned – is automatically removed from my checking account.


October 14, 2013
Snowballing economic pain hitting home
Steven R. Berryman

What had been a political exercise in using intentional pain against innocent citizens to score party-points has now fully devolved into an economic conundrum as we turn the Great Recession into something more closely approximating a second Great Depression.


October 7, 2013
Paying for Non-Essential Government Vacations
Steven R. Berryman

On Friday your House of Representatives took itself off the front burner by passing a law to guarantee back-pay checks to the non-essential workers sitting idle at home. With this assurance, now workers can sit idle for a last minute bonus vacation without any urge to call their congressmen to force any compromise.


September 30, 2013
On the brink of the government shut-down
Steven R. Berryman

We’ve shut down the government before; it’s nothing new, but is a political tactic used to negotiate between warring political factions – also known as the two-party system. You know you are in trouble when their strategy is really about who will get the blame, as opposed to fixing anything.


September 23, 2013
Everybody’s Fall ‘To Do” List
Steven R. Berryman

In no particular order, here is a Fall checklist of “things to do” and/or be aware of in the October 1st time frame. In this period of acorn gathering and inventory for Winter, one cannot be too organized.


September 16, 2013
Obama’s “War of Choice”
Steven R. Berryman

They were tossing babies from incubators; we found uranium centrifuge tubes, we were attacked in the Gulf of Tonkin, “Remember the Maine,” and the Bruce Ivins anthrax attacks from Fort Detrick, Maryland. Now we hear that death counts reported in Syria due to chemical poisoning were spiked with added hundreds killed by conventional means.


September 9, 2013
Apathy may bode well for Mayor Randy
Steven R. Berryman

The incumbent mayoral candidate, our Mayor Randy McClement, is adept at flying under the radar. He’s lowest of profile, Teflon coated, and as such has served the City of Frederick well during these last three-plus years.


September 2, 2013
Labor Day Economics
Steven R. Berryman

Happy Labor Day, America; many of you are reading this later in the day because the long weekend allowed for sleeping in. As opposed to the original justifications from the Industrial Revolution gone-by, strangely we celebrate mass consumerism on this holiday weekend, and “shop ‘til we drop.”


August 19, 2013
“American Dreamers” and Racism in America
Steven R. Berryman

Please indulge me today, in an effort to superimpose what is now considered “American Dreaming,” along with observations on the state of racism in the current environs.


August 12, 2013
One-World American Exceptionalism
Steven R. Berryman

God bless America, for we are still “exceptional” in a world that would force us to be “merely just the same.” Global forces that we have both willingly and unwittingly embraced pull us away from a status that once made our nation the envy of the planet.


August 5, 2013
The NSA and Modern Conspiracy Theories
Steven R. Berryman

The good news is that, despite that ominous, sinking feeling, you are not paranoid; the bad news is that the National Security Agency really does collect all data ever created by your electronic signatures in life.


July 29, 2013
Money and the Middle Class
Steven R. Berryman

Back in the day, it was popular to consider money an evil thing, reserved for those beating or cheating the system in some way. This was a convenient attitude for the anti-materialistic crowd and the young, as most of them had little of it anyway.


July 22, 2013
Important Random Gun Trivia
Steven R. Berryman

In keeping with the lazy informal mode of the sizzling summer, here is an assortment of blurbs relating to firearms, keepin’ it short and tight to match the attention span of the season!


July 15, 2013
The Distractions and Delusions of Summer
Steven R. Berryman

The Zimmerman verdict is in... There; I’ve said it. By now you have already tried to stick your finger down your own throat to force a gag and be done with it all. Too late, though, the incident has already paid-off for its promoters, race fires have been fanned, and the oxygen has been sucked out of the real issues America faces.


July 8, 2013
News-Post Promotes Liberal Manifesto
Steven R. Berryman

In a barely disguised screed in Sunday’s Frederick News-Post print edition, local web publisher and left wing promoter George Wenschhof was given 700 words for his letter to the editor. But it was truly liberal propaganda at best.


July 1, 2013
Not Your Father’s District of Columbia
Steven R. Berryman

Last Tuesday I waxed nostalgic and took the D.C. Metro into Washington to take in some sights and museums with a friend. My Dad had law offices on K Street, in the Watergate Building, and several other locations since the early 1960s, so the trip was not a new one for me.


June 17, 2013
Surrogates, Spies, and Third Party Espionage
Steven R. Berryman

Believe nothing that you hear, and only half of what you see. Agents claiming to act on behalf of your best interests are positioned to dominate your privacy, with the willing complicity of trusted “corporate partners.”


June 10, 2013
When will this privacy invasion end?
Steven R. Berryman

The cartoon depicts a presumably naked couple, under their sheets, in the privacy of their bedroom. A camera labeled “NSA” peeks under the sheets, to the horror of the lady.


June 3, 2013
Will Nuclear Annihilation Save our Nation?
Steven R. Berryman

In the news of late you will find a fresh start to the Cold War, the arms race, and a misguided nationalism from Russia that may actually save the United States of America from its dive into globalism. But at what cost?


May 27, 2013
Clutching Your Guns in Maryland – Activist Edition!
Steven R. Berryman

Between now and October 1st is your last best chance to acquire firearms and ammunition before “the O’Malley Gun Ban” becomes fully implemented. Although the federal attempt to do much the same to all of these United States stalled in Congress, Marylanders will be treated to their own special tyranny.


May 20, 2013
Can I Get a Witness?
Steven R. Berryman

Plumbers and technicians are hard at work all over America today. No, not part of some economic recovery, these tradesmen are the guys who stop the other kinds of leaks; the ones that bring down corrupt administrations.


May 13, 2013
Political Disparity vs. Common Ground in America
Steven R. Berryman

Extreme political positions seem to be the norm, more and more, especially as viewed through the mainstream media lens. Of course, our media, our politicians, and even the government itself benefit from firing people up. Causing the chasm of disagreement brings candidates, voters, volunteers and block captains alike out of the woodwork.


May 6, 2013
What’s Up-stream? A “Rain Tax”
Steven R. Berryman

Not so business friendly Maryland has added another reason to leave the state: a “rain tax” to go along with your gas tax, gun tax, liquor tax, etc. The Maryland Environmental Protection Agency (MDEPA) has mandated cash from counties to compensate for nitrogen polluting the Chesapeake Bay.


April 29, 2013
A Contrast in Firearms Town Hall Meetings
Steven R. Berryman

Last Thursday Frederick County Delegates Michael Hough, Kelly Schulz, Kathy Afzali, and Patrick Hogan met their constituents in a true “town hall” style meeting to cover the state of the Second Amendment in Maryland, now that Gov. Martin O’Malley’s anti-gun bill has become law.


April 22, 2013
Just Like 9/11, Terrorists Got One Right
Steven R. Berryman

Even local papers like our own Frederick News-Post were hijacked by Associated Press stories of the Boston Bombings. CNN regained part of its former Gulf War One glory in actual "breaking news."


April 15, 2013
Tax Avoidance Day 2013
Steven R. Berryman

Happy Federal Tax Day, America. Thinking about your unhappy plight, you citizens that procrastinated for the last three months. Were you disturbed about the possibility that your government could not spend your hard-won earnings more smartly than you could? Owe more than you paid-in?

 


April 8, 2013
On Turning 55
Steven R. Berryman

Upon writing this stream of consciousness piece, just before my “middle age” begins, I am suitably humbled by what a strange, interesting ride it has been. Throwing grammar to the wind today, because I CAN.

 


April 1, 2013
Exponential Encouragement to Flee
Steven R. Berryman

A strange convergence of events last week drew me to the inescapable conclusion that there must be a willful conspiracy in the State of Maryland to actually encourage the exodus of conservatives and patriots from the “free” state. I wish this were an April Fool’s joke.


March 25, 2013
That Poison Gas Tripwire in Syria
Steven R. Berryman

Imperialism, self-righteousness, nation building, and hypocrisy are alive and well, and hosted by 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue yet again. A pre-emptive statement by the president on use of chemical weapons in Syria is coming back to haunt him.


March 18, 2013
Defending Your Right To Be Stupid
Steven R. Berryman

It is counter-intuitive to view a 7-Eleven Super Big Gulp Coke and to believe that its consumption is in the best interest of its drinker. But then again, who’d have thunk that the mayor of New York City himself would ever interject himself as the “food police?”


March 11, 2013
Droning on about Rand Paul’s Filibuster
Steven R. Berryman

Interestingly, it seems that American laws, such as due process and a “right to life” (along with liberty and happiness) that we claim are unalienable inside our national borders, do not work in regards to overseas drone strikes on our own citizens.


March 4, 2013
Why Local Newspapers Will Fail
Steven R. Berryman

During my traveling days, I took to reading local newspapers wherever I went, in part to become more quickly acclimated. The Reading Eagle, The Ithaca Times, and The Richmond Times-Dispatch are just a few.


February 25, 2013
Sequester is Malpractice
Steven R. Berryman

When a surgeon is time-pressured to operate in an emergency, as in a triage situation, he does not begin to use the scalpel at random; he has a plan, based upon his best practices, and what he learned in medical school.


February 18, 2013
Of meteors, drones, and AR-15s
Steven R. Berryman

Riddle me this, Batman: What do meteors, drones, and AR-15 “assault rifles” have in common? Answer: Obviously they all can kill, but there’s more; the first two can justify the third item.


February 11, 2013
Gun Safety in Maryland
Steven R. Berryman

Marylanders demonstrated their appreciation for gun ownership in Annapolis last Wednesday. The Washington Post reported that in Maryland politics rarely had it seen such a large crowd to oppose any proposed legislation.


February 4, 2013
Defining the Terms of “Immigration Reform”
Steven R. Berryman

Count me as being pro comprehensive immigration reform, as long as I get to weigh-in on rational national goals, as well as on the traps, such as unwittingly allowing chain migration in the guise of some family re-unification program under a de-facto amnesty.


January 28, 2013
G.I. Jane gets her wish? Or does she?
Steven R. Berryman

There’s good news, and there’s bad news; women are now slated to work in front-line military positions due to a change in Pentagon policy by outgoing Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta.


January 21, 2013
Left Unsaid by “Obama on Guns”
Steven R. Berryman

Last Wednesday the president conducted a “high noon” news conference to announce and amplify upon 23 “executive actions” concerning gun ownership in America. Children were used as props; the resolutions and legislative suggestions were to propel a liberal anti-gun agenda. The centerpiece ban would not have stopped the psychotic shooter in Connecticut.


November 5, 2012
How Liberals Win Elections
Steven R. Berryman

Liberals win elections by frustrating the electorate into complacency. When it’s all you can do to drag yourself to the poll, you’ve missed the point!


October 8, 2012
The Problem Solving Cycle
Steven R. Berryman

Since America typically elects the president she thinks is best capable of fixing the problems at hand, a brief survey of how the problem solving cycle works is in order. The master rule is to always stay in the box – and never fully fix a problem.


August 13, 2012
Two Pasty White Guys
Steven R. Berryman

Just when the GOP frontrunner’s head-fake took us to Condi Rice and Chris Christie for vice presidential candidate, Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan got the well-timed nod from Mitt Romney.


August 6, 2012
A Letter to my Editor
Steven R. Berryman

I am writing to apologize for not submitting my Monday column. Been doing my usual ongoing reading-prep all week as per usual to see what falls into some form of concentrated written thought, but today it’s just not falling into place.


July 30, 2012
Marines Become Expeditionary Cops
Steven R. Berryman

As reported by Julie Watson for the Associated Press on July 22, The United States Marine Corps is activating three battalions of police specialist units; roughly 1,500 men are involved in new duties and capabilities.


July 23, 2012
Managing the Media-Bias
Steven R. Berryman

When the managing editor of The Frederick News-Post has to leave the boardroom to scribe his own editorial in defense of the “newspaper’s” accusations of media bias and of harboring a leftist agenda, you know something’s up.


July 16, 2012
The War on Women
Steven R. Berryman

Recently a very clever friend of mine had the occasion to infiltrate the National Organization of Women’s (NOW) convention. Shortly thereafter I was briefed over lunch, and now I have a thorough understanding of “the war on women.”


July 9, 2012
That October Surprise
Steven R. Berryman

Paranoid posts on the Internet – some by yours truly – presage fears of an “October Surprise” for this election year; the more this administration senses a one-and-done result for the Obama agenda, the more likely we are to have an incident.


July 2, 2012
Casa de Obama
Steven R. Berryman

After the Supreme Court of The United States decision upholding Obamacare that coincided with my root canal therapy last Thursday, I’m ready to concede that relative to His Majesty, the President, “we are just squirrels playing around in his world.”


June 25, 2012
Is “ObamaFair” the answer?
Steven R. Berryman

Finally, at long last, our president of “everyman” in America has introduced legislation to get Americans displaced by the changing economy transitioned back to work. The “Employability Act for the Structurally Unemployed” or “ObamaFair,” if passed, will enable millions of citizens to learn their way back into the workforce.


June 18, 2012
A Father’s Day Reflection
Steven R. Berryman

As the old Jewish saying goes, you don't always get the parents you want; you get the parents you need. The exact way I heard it was from the guy that owned AudioKrafters in Washington – on the birth of one of my children.


June 11, 2012
The War on Truth
Steven R. Berryman

Our political combat in 2012 is not “truth vs. lies;” it’s “truth vs. propaganda” today as the American people are mis-fed vital information by their leader, President Barack Obama.


June 4, 2012
A State of Anger
Steven R. Berryman

That anger “management” is required as a solution to some highfalutin psychological condition is a severe misnomer; that would be simply treating the symptom.


May 14, 2012
More “economics of illegal immigration”
Steven R. Berryman

A fresh face, Hispanic-featured, appeared in the columnists’ corner of The Frederick News-Post on Saturday; it was a doctor, formerly from my medical group, Parkview Medical. I looked forward to learning his views on illegal-immigration.


May 8, 2012
A Response to “Unexceptionalism”
Steven R. Berryman

I got through “Unexceptionalism: a Primer” (barely) and was tempted to footnote most of it, as the author was obviously not edited for content to any degree. " “Not fleshed out” would be a massive understatement!


April 30, 2012
Zombies, Robots, and Aliens for Obama
Steven R. Berryman

A cool T-shirt that contains a Venn diagram (three circles interconnected,) reminded me of the three sub-groups of people most responsible for the political base and future of the Obama 2012 campaign, now in its fourth year.


April 16, 2012
Legacy-Journalism becomes Bloggers Opportunity
Steven R. Berryman

Lately it occurred to me that the “blogosphere” is working as planned, allowing for collaborative networking and for the bubbling up of ideas and concepts that can – by design – only come from sources outside of the old world media empire that some know as “mainstream media,” and others know as “legacy-journalism.”


April 2, 2012
Lottery Hope
Steven R. Berryman

Upon winning the Mega Millions cash prize on Friday, it was surely time to reflect upon the circumstances and lessons learned; friends revealed themselves, and human nature walked around in her birthday suit. It was not about the winning, though…


March 26, 2012
Guns do kill people, but that’s not the point!
Steven R. Berryman

Contrary to a famous National Rifle Association gun phrase, guns do kill people. Just ask anyone currently associated with a “neighborhood watch” community patrol.


March 19, 2012
The Subjugation of the American Male
Steven R. Berryman

In 1972 liberal forces in America concluded a masterstroke of legislation known as Title IX, and the liberation of women became defined as the subjugation of men. The math is inescapable.


March 9, 2012
The Power of Google in “Decision 2012”
Steven R. Berryman

Superman was replaced by “Apathetic Man” in a recent Frederick News-Post cartoon; in it he tried to budge a stereotypical American voter from his Lazy Boy recliner to get him activated.


March 2, 2012
Money and the “pursuit of happiness”
Steven R. Berryman

We all have visions of what we call “happiness;” perhaps your happy place is depicted by a greeting card or a Norman Rockwell setting…


October 17, 2011
The 9-9-9-9 Solutions
Steven R. Berryman

Not to be outdone by the godfather of GOP candidates, Herman Cain, who is criticized for his oversimplifications in a “9-9-9” plan to fix America, I have decided to add to his concepts. As you would expect, my plan includes more than one bonus digit!


October 10, 2011
Clean Up Wall Street!
Steven R. Berryman

Occupy Wall Street, the “movement,” is now all the rage. I’m all for protests, and this group gets my sympathy. As these things are cyclical, I can’t wait for them to get back to burning bras! Ah, the memories…


October 3, 2011
Waiting To Be Saved
Steven R. Berryman

Here we go again. Americans currently stare at their navels, collectively waiting to be saved by having the right administration or party in power when it’s “their turn” to pull strings after Election 2012.


September 26, 2011
Fox-News, Google & YouTube
Steven R. Berryman

As if we needed more of a signal that politics and the media were combining with entertainment for your viewing enlightenment, enter the Fox-News/Google/YouTube GOP debates in Florida last week.


September 12, 2011
The 9/11/11 Attack
Steven R. Berryman

Hope I’m wrong about a new or copycat attack on “Patriot Day” Sunday; this column was written on Saturday 9/10/11 in anticipation of the 10th anniversary of the past suicide bombings. As of this writing, rumors circulate; advice is cheap and plentiful. Here’s mine!


September 5, 2011
9/11 Patriotic Lessons
Steven R. Berryman

Why do the powers that control such things insist that we remember the anniversaries of the 9/11-suicide attack on the World Trade Center twin towers, Pentagon, and Capital as “Patriot Day?”


August 29, 2011
Engulfed by Irene
Steven R. Berryman

Al Roker and Joe Bastardi are now the media icons of America. On Saturday and Sunday, while absorbing hurricane Irene, we all hunkered-down in our safest places and watched these weather video journalist he-men flex their muscles, leaning into the wind for emphasis.


August 22, 2011
Family Fundraiser FUNomenon!
Steven R. Berryman

Next Saturday, August 27th, you can see The Oak Ridge Boys cover their classic country and gospel standards at the all-day family oriented benefit “Family Fundraiser FUNomenon” at the Great Frederick Fairgrounds.


August 15, 2011
No Insiders for President!
Steven R. Berryman

Based upon a sea of “throw the bums out” sentiments, and a bi-partisan/bi-cameral call for term-limits across the board, no current GOP primary contender could beat President Barack Obama for his second term.


August 8, 2011
When Competition Distracts Patriots
Steven R. Berryman

When the politics of political divisiveness reach crescendo, as they are now during what was billed as America’s “Recovery Summer,” the nature of the two party system is revealed. It serves to sustain itself over the best interests of the American people.


August 1, 2011
While You Were Sleeping II
Steven R. Berryman

Controlling the conversation has become much more important than what the conversation itself is actually about, as in many a good negotiation tactic. I could use the word “manipulation,” but that’s trite now.


July 25, 2011
Nags Head Vacationing Past
Steven R. Berryman

Forgetting politics and current events for a time, vacation is on my mind. One must only notice the missing traffic from Interstate 270 southbound in the mornings to fully realize this!


July 18, 2011
The do-as-I-say, not-as-I-do conundrum
Steven R. Berryman

Our anachronistic President Barack Obama will certainly become known as the “do-as-I-say, not-as-I-do” president. His surgeon general adds scare tactics to graphic warnings on cigarette packs while he sneaks a smoke out of camera range.


July 11, 2011
Privatization: A Failure of Management?
Steven R. Berryman

Frederick County is falling all over itself with responses from all concerned in the matter of the potential privatization of services in our local government. A misnomer known as “Public-Private Partnership” – really a line from a sales brochure that indicates a position on this choice – may cost 528 local jobs initially.


July 4, 2011
Of Corporate-Jets & Asphalt Paving: Class Warfare!
Steven R. Berryman

I didn’t vote for the man, but I don’t hate him either. He won fair and square, based upon campaign promises of hope, transparency, and goodwill for the “middle-class.”


June 20, 2011
Promised to No Man
Steven R. Berryman

My family and I have been living in an “altered state of awareness” since the recent motor scooter accident involving a 19-year-old close family friend, Alex Bodroghy, of Discovery in Walkersville.

 

 


June 13, 2011
QE-2 Runs Out of Gas…
Steven R. Berryman

No, not the ocean going cruise liner, I’m talking about the bail out of Wall Street called “Quantitative Easing Part 2,” likely about to end.


June 6, 2011
Naked Radio WFMD
Steven R. Berryman

Okay, now that I have your attention, the rest should be easy.  Getting people to read any more is quite the trick; the story of my recent airwaves weekend was fun to relive, though. It was naked. It was dirty. It was a dark and stormy night…


May 30, 2011
Is it “Ours to Reason Why?”
Steven R. Berryman

Regardless of your “party,” today is for remembrance of fallen warriors. It’s for respect, contemplation, and for prayer, as that freedom is one for which people died. The prayer part is optional; more proof that we are a free people.


May 23, 2011
Still “Left Behind”
Steven R. Berryman

If today is Monday, and you are reading this, then neither one of us was “Raptured Up” and/or everybody was “left behind.”


May 16, 2011
Paranoid Nation
Steven R. Berryman

Picture the psychiatrist couch cartoon. The therapist says: “Mr. Berryman, we have good news and bad news. The good news is that you are not paranoid. The bad news is that everyone really is out to get you!”


May 9, 2011
Hiding in Plain Sight?
Steven R. Berryman

Ian Fleming could have written the script. Our Navy SEALs could have been portrayed by Chuck Norris, Steven Segal, Charles Bronson, and Vin Diesel.


May 2, 2011
The Simple Folk
Steven R. Berryman

What do the “simple folk do,” as Robert Goulet and Richard Burton asked in the musical, “Camelot?” Seems that two-billion of us “commoners” happily basked in bloody old England’s glory days.


April 25, 2011
Bye-Bye Glenn Beck
Steven R. Berryman

My conspiracy theory includes billionaire manipulator George Soros holding a knife to the throat of FoxNews management’s throats; Glenn Beck has got to go, or else!


April 18, 2011
The “Millionaires Paradox” Speech
Steven R. Berryman

The President of the United States of America was 20 minutes late to his after lunch speech at prestigious George Washington University last Wednesday. His audience, many of them sons and daughters of New York City millionaires, got to hear their parents very publicly disrespected.


April 11, 2011
RetrO-bama Econometrics
Steven R. Berryman

Having feelings of nostalgia for Jimmy Carter recently? Probably not, as the mind tends to forget the bad and concentrate on the good; we can only call it déjà-vu now, in Spring 2011, of a time best forgotten, when America diluted.


April 4, 2011
Obamanomics Amateurism on Display
Steven R. Berryman

Now I rose only to Freshman 101-level economics at Lycoming College 34 years ago under the late Dr. Robert Rabold, a former presidential economist, so he claimed. President Barack Obama claims that America, by shifting away from imported oil, will make new jobs.


March 28, 2011
Commenting on the Comments
Steven R. Berryman

My other writing job involves scribing the Friday Op-Ed column for The Frederick News-Post. As they allow on-line commenting at the end of each column and article, anonymous feedback can be ascertained.


March 21, 2011
On Our Spectator-In-Chief
Steven R. Berryman

Did you happen upon the presidential news conference on Friday concerning events in the Middle East, and Libya in particular? It was a classic “donut hole” presentation – up until three quarters of the way through.


March 14, 2011
Japan's Meltdown
Steven R. Berryman

Four days ago our violent universe proved that we still live on “the restless earth.” Many thanks to my college professors and to science fiction writers for at least softening the ground on these topics, allowing us to grasp the scope of disasters.


March 7, 2011
Absent A “Balance of Power”
Steven R. Berryman

Is the Middle East on fire with revolution simply as a domino effect born of circumstances? Are public labor unions suddenly at odds with their government simply because of some newly empowering force? There are greater, overarching factors in play in both cases, not fully recognized.


February 28, 2011
Botched America
Steven R. Berryman

America is fast gaining the reputation as the lead paper-tiger in the world. Carry a big stick and don’t use it. Forget the positive momentum and goodwill bequeathed to us by prior generations; apologize as convenient.


February 21, 2011
Madison, Egypt
Steven R. Berryman

Egyptians everywhere were rejoicing in sympathy with America as they watched coverage of the “freedom riots” of Madison, Wisconsin, broadcast by al Jazeera with permission of CNN.


February 14, 2011
Multiple Hijackings
Steven R. Berryman

When I was growing up in Rockville in the 60’s, a hijacking was what happened to unfortunate commercial airliners, bound for Miami but violently diverted to the Communist Cuba of Fidel Castro.


February 7, 2011
The Consequences in Egypt
Steven R. Berryman

In an America addicted to cheap oil, our apparent “ends justify the means” foreign policy is consistently justified.


January 31, 2011
Heisenberg’s Principle and Egyptian Chaos
Steven R. Berryman

To the casual observer, events unfolding in Egypt can appear chaotic, random and spontaneous. Is the fall of Egypt related to an empowerment born of strength drawn from Tunisia’s demise as an authoritarian regime?


January 24, 2011
Solving Phone Message Systems
Steven R. Berryman

Even jokes about how bad phone message routing systems have become are bad now. For instance, one car dealership has bragged about “pressing the dreaded number 3” if you have a problem. Their solution had been to put a human on the other side of the switchboard.


January 17, 2011
Is America “coarsening?”
Steven R. Berryman

There are currently more dead via gun play than the total days elapsed in the year for Prince George’s County, MD. An Asian man in the Wellington Trace subdivision of Frederick County shot members of his family before killing himself.


February 22, 2010
Labyrinth of Laptops
Steven R. Berryman

Heading for Best Buy with son Paul on Saturday night seemed like a good idea, especially as I was without reliable keyboard and mouse, thanks to my wireless setup gentrifying.


February 15, 2010
Brain-dead Government
Steven R. Berryman

In one of nature’s oddest ironies, the human brain is devoid of pain sensors. The organ charged by the body to manage and regulate all of its internal activity – including the thought processes believed to create self-awareness and intelligence itself – cannot “feel.”


February 8, 2010
It’s-sNOw-problem
Steven R. Berryman

If you can read this, then you are some of the lucky ones; still with electricity, and having free time from shoveling and plowing chores. Since we are now low on Pringles and instant coffee, this may be close to the end at our place, out in Dearbought.


February 1, 2010
The Essential Blaine Young
Steven R. Berryman

“Hell froze over” Saturday at Winchester Hall, as the man known to his fans as “Frederick’s youngest good ol’ boy” was unanimously appointed to be its youngest county commissioner. Those knowing the man well were not at all surprised.


January 25, 2010
Information Overload
Steven R. Berryman

Pity the news and information junkie in making it through the last week. Taken in totality, and in “real time,” one can actually see the earth spinning a little faster on its axis; or, at least, notice changes occurring virtually faster than people can consider the implications.


January 18, 2010
Humorous Politics
Steven R. Berryman

Don’t “mis-underestimate” the value of humor in the politics of the day ’round this county of late. Pardon the Bush-ism, but it seems to fit the chaos. The amount of inherent comedy now is limited only by your personal perspective in our political matters at hand here in Maryland.


January 11, 2010
Kicking the Dog
Steven R. Berryman

Last week two separate Republican Central Committees duked it out over the official appointment – short term – for the remainder of the term of the 3-B delegate seat being vacated by Rick Weldon.


January 4, 2010
The Apple of Politics
Steven R. Berryman

In the beginning, the good Earth contained only two human beings.  They had only one apple between them. Therefore, politics was born.


December 28, 2009
What’s In and What’s Out – 2010 Edition
Steven R. Berryman

It is my distinct honor and pleasure to pass judgments for you once again on changes, transitions, and trends spanning this New Years period. So, after some not-so-insignificant pondering:


December 21, 2009
Citizens For Walkersville – Postscript
Steven R. Berryman

 

With little fanfare or media coverage, last Friday around noon, the last chapter of the “Citizens for Walkersville” saga ended with the sale of the old Nicodemus Farm to the Town of Walkersville.


December 14, 2009
Paradigm Shifting and Your Government
Steven R. Berryman

The first step in solving a problem is to admit that it – in fact – exists. The churning “self-re-election system” that is our federal government has proven to Americans now that it has fully stopped listening to the people.


December 7, 2009
The Best Versions of Ourselves
Steven R. Berryman

Bob Miller’s Christmas Cash for Kids is now on the books for 2009 with a record pledge amount exceeding $134,000. The total dollar amount beat last year – even in the depths of our Great Recession – but dollar amount does not tell the story.


November 30, 2009
Considering the Source
Steven R. Berryman

More than a headline, title or subject line, considering the source author itself is most vital to comprehension when establishing the weight of your various media viewings and readings.


November 23, 2009
Of Double-Dips and Bubbles
Steven R. Berryman

The corollary of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s famous “We have nothing to fear but fear itself” is that economically, it’s the “not knowing” that can damage us even worse than a specific negative indicator of our progress in recovery.


November 16, 2009
Just Dithering About College
Steven R. Berryman

A quick overnight out toward Maryland’s Eastern Shore over the past weekend took yours truly and my oldest son Paul to Salisbury University for a pre-admissions visit.


November 9, 2009
Various and Sundry…around the horn
Steven R. Berryman

Last week’s column went out on The Tentacle at over 1,400 words and I swore to do better this week. To wit, I offer you these nicely abbreviated sundry items:


November 2, 2009
Voting My Conscience
Steven R. Berryman

The City of Frederick elections are now upon us, so it’s time to get your voting strategy together. Those stuck at simply “voting the party line,” will be at a distinct disadvantage in our municipal election tomorrow.


October 26, 2009
Tang and Teflon
Steven R. Berryman

With scientists as the new high priests of the 1950s we officially entered the “Space Age” in 1958 with the launch of the satellite Sputnik by our archrival in the world, the U.S.S.R.


October 19, 2009
The Heavy Time
Steven R. Berryman

Boundless optimism toward future prospects and possibilities used to mark the American Spirit. Now, we make zero-sum choices in our lives, sometimes with no good outcomes, and are lead by a president who would have us borrow wealth instead of creating it.


October 12, 2009
Manipulation Nation
Steven R. Berryman

The control of your future behavior on an epic scale is the goal by some that will make us “The Manipulation Nation.”

 


October 5, 2009
It’s “The Message,” Stupid
Steven R. Berryman

Freedom of speech may be relegated to the past, if the voices of our Founding Fathers are not re-remembered, and quickly. Some attempts to exercise our First, and most valuable amendment to the Constitution, upon examination, are really attacks on the message itself.


September 28, 2009
The Politics of Fairness
Steven R. Berryman

The greatest lie propagated on our children in public education today is that “fairness” will be a guiding principle in life.


September 21, 2009
Grass-Roots Betrayed
Steven R. Berryman

Much has been said on all sides in evaluating recent protestors in Washington, as well as in Frederick. Just what is a legitimate “grass-roots” uprising, anyway?


September 14, 2009
9/11 Rally Meets the Tea Party
Steven R. Berryman

The convergence of local politics with national is impossible to escape now, even to the casual observer. With the timeframe overlap between the newest “Tea Party” style rally, the observances of 9/11s “Patriot Day,” and municipal primary elections tomorrow in Frederick, the relationship between party and constituent becomes even more blurred.


September 7, 2009
Time Management
Steven R. Berryman

Should you not have time to read my columns, then make an exception and read this one now. “I just don’t have the time” sounds like a personal problem to me, and that attitude will not advance your ability to get things done in our zero-sum time of “no time.”


August 31, 2009
Plowing the Crowded Field
Steven R. Berryman

One reason for the poor turnout at municipal elections is a perceived lack of differentiation between the candidates. This year we also suffer the fog of a large field of aldermanic candidates for the City of Frederick.


August 24, 2009
Twitter Primer
Steven R. Berryman

The Twitter.com phenomenon is not understood. It has nothing to do with text messaging, and more to do with poetry and “forced pithiness.”


August 17, 2009
The Long Reach of the Tentacles
Steven R. Berryman

Having been on my “staycation” last week, I did not present my usual column last week. With so much transpiring in the meantime, here come some mini-Tentacles in an effort to catch up and to make up!


August 3, 2009
More-on Medicine!
Steven R. Berryman

Call me crazy, but I want to live longer, and into a fruitful old age. All events surrounding healthcare reform convince me of the opposite!


July 27, 2009
Why Take Back America?
Steven R. Berryman

To the uninitiated, the very concept of a “meet-up group” can be worrisome, and a bit unsettling. With much curiosity about our local splinter organization emerging from the original “Tea Party Movement,” I jumped into the fray last Friday night at the Hampton Inn’s meeting room.


July 20, 2009
Nags Head Vacationing Past
Steven R. Berryman

Forgetting politics and current events for a time, vacation is on my mind. One must only notice the missing traffic from Interstate 270 southbound in the mornings to fully realize this!


July 13, 2009
Vigilance Is Our Saving Grace
Steven R. Berryman

I deny that I wrote this column. The problem is that the technology exists today to record electronically the very keystrokes emanating from my wireless keyboard, and – that as it happens – in “real time!”


July 6, 2009
The Take Back America Rally
Steven R. Berryman

It was my honor and pleasure to bear witness to the first annual rally in front of the Frederick County Courthouse on the 4th of July. Not a “tea party,” it was about taking back America.


June 29, 2009
Cap and Traitor
Steven R. Berryman

The House of Representatives barely passed the first stage in President Obama’s “Cap-and-Trade” energy/ecology legislation late Friday 219-212. This, with the help of eight Republican traitors crossing over to vote, and having not read the bill, hundreds of pages of which only just became available at 3 A.M. on the day of the vote.


June 22, 2009
And Hippocrates Wept
Steven R. Berryman

The final form of changes to our current healthcare system, as is being pressed by our President Barack Obama, is still under wraps. A rational discussion of the ramifications for all concerned – including you – is an essential exercise now.


June 15, 2009
Stereo Daze
Steven R. Berryman

As complex as life and electronics are these days, I cannot help but look back fondly to my first big job and the consumer world of the 1970s, before computers, cell phones, and even home theater and large screen televisions.


June 8, 2009
Just Get Over It!
Steven R. Berryman

Finally, some answers to persistent probing questions as to what is apparently the death of the old two-party political system, and the promised bipartisanship of our Messiah-president. As stunningly simple as it sounds, no matter the issue or facts at hand, get used to “We won, you lost; just get over it!”


June 1, 2009
Not about Judge Sonia Sotomayor
Steven R. Berryman

Today you will be happy to note that I did not fill this space with the abundant fodder falling out from the nomination of 2nd Circuit Judge Sonia Sotomayor for the upcoming vacancy on the United States Supreme Court.


May 25, 2009
Toward a Workable Hair Care System
Steven R. Berryman

Government economists, in conjunction with the Obama Administration, have now decided we must tackle the struggling hair care industry immediately, even if this requires full nationalization of assets, as it is “too big to fail.”


May 18, 2009
Death by Technology Dependence
Steven R. Berryman

How do civilizations die? How do cultures die? How do people die?


May 11, 2009
Anticipating the Air Show! – 2009
Steven R. Berryman

Time to break with your hibernation from the winter blahs; stop getting upset about the politics of Democratic deconstruction and more illegal immigrants for a time. Andrews Air Force base, in nearby Prince George’s County offers the best air show in the region once a year, and it’s this coming weekend!


May 4, 2009
If TheTentacle.com were Facebook
Steven R. Berryman

Not being in the mood to write, blog post, or comment, I started to consider some plausible excuses for skipping my Monday Tentacle column for this week.


April 27, 2009
While you were out…
Steven R. Berryman

If you blinked at the wrong moment over the last few weeks, and rely solely on one part of the media paradigm for your news, you may have missed any of these following items. Not necessarily because of media-bias, but simply because we only have so much time and tolerance for added information in our lives:


April 20, 2009
Because Hope is not a Method
Steven R. Berryman

My name is Steve, and I’m a “right-wing extremist.” That’s how I would start an “AA” meeting if those letters stood for “activists anonymous!”


April 13, 2009
About the Net
Steven R. Berryman

What the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), once contrived to connect university research scientists to each other in the course of their daily work, has now become the world’s greatest tool, toy, and liability – our Internet.


April 6, 2009
Our ‘Apologist-in-Chief”
Steven R. Berryman

News of the demise of America has been greatly exaggerated. Alas, one would never know it, though, as President Barack Obama disgorged his political capital recently on the tail end of the G20 economic summit.


March 30, 2009
Print News and Information Wars
Steven R. Berryman

Printed newspapers are under attack. Many will not make it. The “gray ladies,” now printed expensively in color, are ending up still plastic-wrapped in your recycle bucket.


March 23, 2009
As the Worm Turns
Steven R. Berryman

Last week marked a watershed in the recent history of our newly transforming “Obamanation.” The anecdotal evidence was everywhere, although highly disparate, that what had once been hope, born of its own sake, was being replaced by a more healthy skepticism.


March 16, 2009
Where’s the “Ownership,” Mr. President?
Steven R. Berryman

During the election cycle of 2008 it became the standard rhetoric for candidate Barack Obama and his wife to distance themselves from the elements of what it meant to “be American.”


March 9, 2009
Twitter Me This!
Steven R. Berryman

In an age when the president is only now just picking up on the notion that his public statements and the stock exchange fluctuations are related and important, why is he inviting a business-celebrity from the social networking website, www.twitter.com to the White House for cocktails?


March 2, 2009
The Hijacked Presidency
Steven R. Berryman

“Now is not the time to be making a profit” was a line from a speech from President Barack Obama that included disgracing corporate CEOs for being successful. The arbitrary “Maginot line” of selfishness had now been placed at a half million-dollars in salary.


February 23, 2009
On Writing
Steven R. Berryman

Having many writers in the family, both close and distant, I have begun to wonder whether the urge to put pen to paper is an inherited trait, or a learned one.


February 16, 2009
What’s in it for me?
Steven R. Berryman

In my efforts at ever expanding personal open-mindedness, the other morning I went straight for The Washington Post to learn the well-camouflaged details of the final $787 billion dollar spending package, called “The Porkulus” by Rush Limbaugh, and “The Spendulus” by Laura Ingraham.


February 9, 2009
Big Lies
Steven R. Berryman

Famous lies of our time include: “The check’s in the mail,” “The computer is down,” and, “You can trust me.” The smaller lies – and, thus, easier to verify – are the hardest to tell and to maintain.


February 2, 2009
When the “Have Nots” Rule
Steven R. Berryman

With 40 percent of America having now achieved entitlement-class status, it stands to reason that the burden of supporting our welfare country is born by the remaining 60 percent of the citizens.


January 26, 2009
Theater of the Absurd
Steven R. Berryman

For those feeling unsteady and questioning their own sanity of late, fear not, as you are truly living through an experience akin to watching Doug Adam’s movie, “Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” while listening to a Pink Floyd album.


January 19, 2009
So Far No Change
Steven R. Berryman

The observable operating philosophy of President-elect Barack Obama thus far comes to us in the form of a television situation comedy, as in an “Obama Knows Best.” It comes off as the blind requirement of our total trust.


January 12, 2009
The Benefits of Bottoming Out
Steven R. Berryman

Not all progress is linear in nature. As in mountain climbing, sometimes one has to travel down to get up. A glacial valley can lead to a better summit trail.


January 5, 2009
This Shakeout Year
Steven R. Berryman

There is really nothing overtly negative about encountering an economic shakeout period such as the one we have entered. In fact, what we will discover this New Year is that long-term national prosperity for America herself depends on a boom and bust cycle.


December 29, 2008
What’s in and What’s out for 2009
Steven R. Berryman

Every year we have major shifts in trends, policy, attitudes, and happenings. The 2008 / 2009 transition is no different, and is more important than usual.


December 22, 2008
Shopping and related thoughts…
Steven R. Berryman

What are you doing reading this column when you could be out Christmas shopping?


December 15, 2008
When American Cars Were King
Steven R. Berryman

American cars manufactured by the big three automakers are case studies of what not to do in a competitive environment. When engineering creativity and innovation fall by the wayside, what you get is a “car by consensus” aimed at the widest possible audience that – in the end – satisfies nobody.


December 8, 2008
Conversational Items
Steven R. Berryman

In absolutely no particular order, here are some hot items for your reading pleasure, just in time for that water cooler conversation or company holiday party.

 


December 1, 2008
Never Cool
Steven R. Berryman

As usual, family gatherings over the Thanksgiving weekend allowed for more personal interactions. I have three wonderful teenagers and have confirmed that the scrutiny and evaluation that befall parents at this critical juncture are surely unimaginable to anyone not experiencing it first hand.


November 24, 2008
A Saturday with the Sheriff
Steven R. Berryman

On Saturday I found myself waiting outside the Church of the Brethren for Chuck Jenkins, sheriff of Frederick County. He was late, but I don’t blame the man, as he is in highest demand during these troubled and newly formative days.


November 17, 2008
Befuddled in Frederick
Steven R. Berryman

What strange days we are living in. My sympathy goes out to those whose intellectual process it is to attempt to make sense of the world around them.


November 10, 2008
Election Post Mortem
Steven R. Berryman

Election 2008 is over. America now has a new president-elect, and an opportunity to evaluate just what Barack Obama’s victory means. Here are some lessons learned along with some 20/20 hindsight.


November 3, 2008
Predicting The Result
Steven R. Berryman

I have no crystal ball, but considering the events upcoming on Election Day, I feel compelled to prognosticate aloud. John McCain and Sarah Palin will be your next president and vice president of the United States of America. And here’s why:


October 27, 2008
House of Cards Burning Down
Steven R. Berryman

What had been “supply side economics” and the economic school of “rational expectations” is now both an experiment gone bad and a “Ponzi Scheme” exposed.

 


October 20, 2008
Voting Strategy for President
Steven R. Berryman

How can pollsters possibly get it right? Sampling and trend analysis, and picking the correct “target groups” would seem to be impossible efforts, based upon my informal surveys.

 


October 13, 2008
The Beginning at The End
Steven R. Berryman

This is The End. Not in the way the iconic 70’s rock group The Doors mean it. Not in a “depressing” way, but in another. This is not the beginning of “The End,” but the end of the beginning of a world economic reshuffling.


October 6, 2008
The People’s Will Not Done
Steven R. Berryman

The People to the government: “A lack of planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on my part!” Or does it?

 


September 29, 2008
Three Blind Mice
Steven R. Berryman

What do the president’s speech to the American people on Thursday, and the performance of both the Democratic and Republican candidate at the first presidential debate in Oxford, Mississippi, have in common? Answer: None of them acted with full candor and in a bipartisan way, as advertised.

 


September 26, 2008
Don’t Panic!
Steven R. Berryman

…With those words, and the threat of bipartisan congressional intervention, you may wish to do exactly that. Any rush to solution is certainly against the best interests of the citizens of the United States of America.

 


September 22, 2008
You Bet Your Life…
Steven R. Berryman

The market psychology of the financial investment world has now changed forever. What had been betting essentially on the fortunes of businesses will at least – for the short term – be replaced by betting on how we suspect the rules of the game will change.

 


September 15, 2008
A Bias About Media Bias
Steven R. Berryman

Last Saturday my attention was taken from Tentacle scribing and also from my other compulsion, posting comments to www.FrederickNewsPost.com, by their Ask the Editor feature, “The dark secrets of our political bias,” by Comfort Dorn.

 


September 8, 2008
Dressing the Moose
Steven R. Berryman

I’m loving the political jokes now: What’s the experience difference between Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and Illinois Sen. Barack Obama?  Answer: Not much when taken in aggregate, but Governor Palin is a better ice hockey player and can shoot straight…

 


September 1, 2008
Waiting for the President
Steven R. Berryman

At least the conventions are a stepping-stone along the road to electing a new president, but here we sit, waiting. We wait for a president to solve our problems for us, as is human nature. Surely they will, as their speeches tell us so.

 


August 18, 2008
Counting Students
Steven R. Berryman

The argument continues: Let’s count the children who are from families that are not paying into Frederick County Public Schools so that we can get our arms around the problem of looming budget deficits.

 


August 11, 2008
T. Boone & Slim Pickens
Steven R. Berryman

What does a famous Texas oil baron do to ensure some personal legacy at age 80? He becomes an alternative energy activist, and starts a web site with a link to his own MySpace page, of course!

 


August 4, 2008
“Mega Trends” Become Non-Sequiturs
Steven R. Berryman

Seems like chaos rules anymore when analyzing the changing trends in world happenings and trying to make things make sense. Much of it just doesn’t follow, as in non-sequiturs. There are just too many data points now for old method.

 


July 28, 2008
Windows Vista and Beyond
Steven R. Berryman

When my kids convinced me that computers and the Internet were here to stay, I invested some time, mostly via trial-and-error, to set up a system of my own. Recently I sat back and took stock of what had eventually become the cyber-center of my organizational universe.

 


July 21, 2008
The Enemy Within
Steven R. Berryman

Vacationing in Bethany Beach, Delaware, took me past the iconic sub-watch towers, still positioned as they were during World War II, standing guard at the shoreline. These fortified cylindrical monoliths at one time dotted the East Coast from Maine to Florida, protecting our borders from invasion.

 


July 7, 2008
Firearms Clutching in Maryland
Steven R. Berryman

Having grown up with guns, little did I know that the politics surrounding them packed more energy than a .44 Magnum “wheel-gun.” Of course, that was when television came in over an antenna, was black and white, and afforded four stations of programming.

 


July 4, 2008
Modifying Lady Liberty’s Invitation
Steven R. Berryman

In search of straight talk about immigration law reform, happenstance found me at yet another “Maryland Thursday Meeting” in Annapolis. Mark Krikorian, executive director of the Center For Immigration Studies (CIS) was the headline speaker.

 


June 30, 2008
A NAC for Social Progress
Steven R. Berryman

Last Thursday The Neighborhood Advisory Council (NAC) Area 5 meeting for the residents surrounding the West End of Frederick, known as the “Golden Mile, headlined an appearance by the sheriff of Frederick County, “Chuck” Jenkins.

 


June 23, 2008
Ear to the Ground
Steven R. Berryman

Once again, awash in too much real news, here is a smorgasbord of the events I witnessed last week. You may call it “Short Takes 2,” as I keep my ears to the ground for The Tentacle and Frederick County.

 


June 16, 2008
The Unbearable Lightness of Being Russert
Steven R. Berryman

The loss by heart attack of Meet The Press host Tim Russert, especially after an excellent stress test recently, reminds us of our “unbearable lightness of being” on this earth. Friday the 13th, the date this shocked us, will have new meaning now and forever.


June 9, 2008
Dangerous Days
Steven R. Berryman

The anecdotal evidence has been building for many months. Now two top men are forced from positions of power in the United States Air Force for convenient reasons. Is our target Iran?

 


June 2, 2008
The Age of Online Animosity
Steven R. Berryman

The more that I follow the divisive issues of our day, the more I feel we are in “The Age of Online Animosity.” Righteous indignity is having a field day, and there is far more posturing than productive discourse floating about. This is especially evident on the Internet.

 


May 26, 2008
Short Takes
Steven R. Berryman

Here are some short takes on happenings and observations from the last few weeks. From a Diversity Festival, to an Air Show, to English as a national language, to the proposal for 2300 new Beazer “green” homes, things are happening at a fast and furious pace!

 


May 19, 2008
Energy Absurdities
Steven R. Berryman

How does one gage the pain level of rising energy prices on a household budget? When the price at the pump for gas at Sheetz hits $3.79 for unleaded regular, does that do it?


May 12, 2008
Anticipating the Air Show!
Steven R. Berryman

Time to break with your hibernation from the winter blahs, stop getting upset about the politics of Democratic deconstruction and more illegal aliens for a time. Andrews Air Force base, in nearby Prince George’s County offers the best Air Show in the region once a year, and it’s this coming weekend!


May 5, 2008
Our 10 Most Dangerous Concepts
Steven R. Berryman

It has been said many times over the last week that before we can solve a problem, we first must be able to identify it; and thus get our arms around it. In many instances, by the simple act of stating the outline correctly, one can be drawn to solutions.


April 28, 2008
Free Money!
Steven R. Berryman

Congratulations for being smart enough to be in the United States of America. Everything is free here. And when you run out of money to spend, we’ll give you some of that, too. In Frederick County, if you can’t read this, I’ll bet there will be a sign on a bus in Espanol repeating it soon.


April 22, 2008
This is NOT a Test! – Part 2
Steven R. Berryman

Now that you have been exposed to the various levels of potential hazards hanging over us all like Damocles’ sword in Part 1 on yesterday’s TheTentacle.com, the onus to take action now lies squarely on you.


April 21, 2008
This is NOT a Test! – Part 1
Steven R. Berryman

Your radio or television begins the strange squealing, coded sounds you have heard so often before. “Here we go again” is the first thought that comes to mind. Programming is instantly interrupted. In disbelief, the Emergency Alert System (EAS) continues with “This is NOT a Test!”


April 14, 2008
Charlton Heston: A Commentary
Steven R. Berryman

I would never pretend to write a biography or obituary for Charlton Heston, and certainly have nothing first hand to offer as does The Tentacle’s Roy Meachum, but I have been affected by his life and his death. And his work.


April 7, 2008
“1984” Predicts 2008
Steven R. Berryman

Enabling legislation passed by our Maryland General Assembly will allow Frederick to use red light cameras for law enforcement. Frederick is now one small step closer to becoming Montgomery County. Your accuser may be “Big Brother” instead of a police officer. Beware the trend.


March 31, 2008
The Semantic War 4000
Steven R. Berryman

Survey says: You don’t want to hear it. The 4,000 war-attributed deaths in combat were reported as a “milestone” event last week in our Iraq War. Why did one have to turn to page A-3 in many papers to read the story? Strange, as we are told by President George W. Bush’s administration that this is the defining issue of our day, even in light of the “recession.”


March 24, 2008
The Dilution of our Citizenship and Branding of America
Steven R. Berryman

Membership has its rewards! Just ask major credit card providers. Citizenship in America is much the same way. When we “brand” America, in the demographic sense, citizenship should be the upgrade, and it should not be provided with no strings attached!

 


March 21, 2008
The Importance of Being Obama
Steven R. Berryman

The media fanfare trumpeted the coming of candidate Barack Obama’s urgent speech on race relations. Surely he could turn the audacious comments of his own Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright to make political hay, or at least defray the intense criticism of him and mitigate the close connection.


March 17, 2008
Political Pornography
Steven R. Berryman

Just imagine that – in 10 years or so – you will be reminding yourself of just where you were and what you were doing when Gov. Eliot Spitzer (D., N.Y.) abruptly resigned his sacred office. Not!


March 10, 2008
Casa de Illegals
Steven R. Berryman

Historians contend that “Nero fiddled while Rome burned.” While The Maryland General Assembly is allowing time for debate on key issues such as the protection for “Doo-Wop” singers against copyright infringement, consequential issues like the current illegal immigration disaster fall by the wayside. Do we really want to hold a nationally infamous title as a “Sanctuary State?”


February 25, 2008
Words, Just Words
Steven R. Berryman
A presidential primary campaign is upon us now, much earlier in impact than in years past. The issues that are forced “off the table” are, in some cases, the ones that should be the defining ones. Shame on us for not forcing them back into the light of day for our proper examination.

February 11, 2008
Activist Frederick County
Steven R. Berryman
Great news! The System works. Activism is alive and well and living in Frederick County, Maryland. Where the system fails to work, it is fixing itself; and isn’t that what the system really is?

February 4, 2008
John McCain Facing Forward
Steven R. Berryman
The Florida Republican Primary contest is now behind us and it certainly was a watershed event. John McCain won large. Rudy Giuliani bowed out afterward despite having wagered heavily in that state, chock-full of retirees from New York. This may have been the arena where McCain’s age was a trump card. What does he face going forward?

January 21, 2008
From Walkersville With Bias
Steven R. Berryman
Advice from the publisher of The Tentacle, John W. Ashbury given to me recently correctly told me that “A pancake, however thin, always has 2 sides,” in reminding me to consider the aspects of perspective and fairness in my columns.

January 14, 2008
Lessons Learned
Steven R. Berryman
I consider myself fortunate to have witnessed the quasi-legal proceedings of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, Inc.’s (AMC) hearings to obtain approval of a special exception that would allow them to build a 43,000 square foot convention building in Walkersville.

December 31, 2007
Citizens For Walkersville – Part 1
Steven R. Berryman
The true story of how a small agricultural town came together against a ridiculous land use proposition. The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, Inc., (AMC) chose my town of 5500 residents to build their International Convention Center, and upset our way of life.

December 17, 2007
Homeland Security Fails I-270
Steven R. Berryman
Commuters traversing the Frederick to DC highway corridor via Interstate 270 suffer the agony still falling from the 1956 Defense Highway Act. The overcapacity delays cause average speeds to be reduced during rush hour to 30 M.P.H., costing a total of six entire man-years of time to be wasted every day.

December 10, 2007
Jingoist Bells, Jingoist Bells…
Steven R. Berryman
…Jingo all the way. When did patriotism become a negative attribute of Americans, and why isn’t Pat Buchanan running for president in 2008? The advanced press for his new book, Day Of Reckoning, reads more like a campaign platform than it does a plot; his compilation of issues and proposed solutions leaves one feeling a patriotic sense of hope for us all again, so long as his warnings are positively received.

December 3, 2007
Side-Arms Showdown in DC
Steven R. Berryman
By upholding a lower court ruling, the District of Columbia gun ban could well be overturned with finality by the U.S. Supreme Court next spring. You might ask why this bothers both the NRA and The Brady Campaign.


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