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Perhaps Meg you could plant a favourite tree and watch it grow but it would have to be hardy to the area you're in.  We planted a little holly tree in the space where a hedge plant got demolished so it will still be green when all the leaves are off the hedge, sort of a conversation item.  It is a male/female one so it already has lots of berries.

 

What a good idea to hint that you would like a NT membership, something you don't have to make room for in the house.

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It's not so much the hardiness as having to combat the force of the prevailing wind, and the roots not getting a good purchase in the sandy soil.

 

I bought some strong tubular steel screw-in tree supports, to hold up some wind-break netting in a particularly vulnerable part of the garden, and although having been screwed in very deeply the wind still causes one particular pole to lean over and make a hole in the ground at its base.

 

Sadly lack of hardiness does seem to be a problem with most of my clematis. They can cling on to the shrubs and netting they grow through with no trouble, but if we get really stormy weather then the wind, presumably salt-laden, causes the leaves and flowers to shrivel & scorch. But I will persevere - they come back eventually, and I'm not ready to dig them up yet!

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Can hardly believe it's November; although I am clearing some dead & decaying plants from the veg plot I am still picking ripe outdoor tomatoes.

I took all the current fruit off yesterday, the red and the green, but couldn't bring myself to grub out the plants that are still flowering - not that I expect them to produce fruit this year.

Surely we will get a frost before much longe, even this close to the sea.

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How nice to still have some nice ripe tomatoes available.  I think all of ours are gone, didn't do too well this year although the ones we had tasted good.

 

Marvellously sunny day today, I can hear the neighbour who looks after our lawn out there blowing leaves.  Chews them up with the lawnmower and adds them to his compost to put down next year on his lawn and his gardens.

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Dan is very far away, thank goodness.  This isn't really very close to Dallas.  It's much closer to San Antonio, which is about 4 hours away.  I have lots of friends who live near San Antonio, but not on that side of the city.  Terrible story.  I really don't think it's possible to understand what motivates people to do those kinds of things.  I realize access to weapons makes it easier, but many people have those kinds of weapons without wiping out entire congregations of churchgoers.  

 

I'm a big supporter of the 2nd amendment (as is Bernie Sanders, I might add) and if the purpose of the 2nd amendment is to protect ourselves against government overreach, then being able to make the guns military grade is part of that right.  Maybe those stocks are the things that should be kept by organized militias so that if we need to protect ourselves, we can, but we don't go shooting up churches and concerts.  I doubt that many of you are as sympathetic to this argument as I am, but in the era of Trump's movement to totalitarianism, I think the arguments are stronger than ever.


There, NOW I've done it.

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Binker, does it concern you at all that the NRA seems to have a stranglehold on gun control so that even some more common sense restraints can't get through legislation?  I see Trump signed an executive order in February  cancelling the one that the Obama administration put in place whereby people with mental problems would be denied the right to owning a gun, the argument being it would deny them their constitutional rights. I think that was the one that had been in place but not sure.  Granted not everyone with a mental problem is going to go on a gun rampage but how do you know which ones may turn to violence?  It seems like an insurmountable problem.  Please correct me if I've got it wrong.

 

Just taking a breather before trying to shampoo the rug in the family room where our daughter's elderly dog sleeps during the day but can't get out of the dog door because he's so frail and sometimes we have a wet spot on the carpet.  Everything takes twice or three times as long to do in the so called Golden Years! :(

 

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Naturally I have no idea of the geography of America but you, Binker - or Dan - might have had friends or family there.  I'm glad that you and yours are alright.

 

As for the second amendment : it's difficult to say from a Scottish point of view.  It's usually the case that if anyone here has a weapon they are up to no good.

 

In Switzerland everyone has to do national service and therefore everyone has a weapon.  I believe that Switzerland has the lowest murder rate on the planet.

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Luna, I think you are right about the Swiss.  And I think the difference is that the Swiss are well-behaved rule-followers.  Americans are not.  In a BIG way, we are not.  For example, there is no way you would get most Americans to agree to turn in their weapons to law enforcement (guns or knives), even well-behaved, non-murderous Americans.  I wouldn't do it and I don't even own or want a gun, although I have a Bowie knife and a hunting knife because my son sold knives to make extra money.  

 

Momac, those restrictions sound good, but they have no practical effect.  There is no national registry of people with mental problems and I would not support one being created.  There's no way that list would be kept confidential and then lots of perfectly good people would be stigmatized in other areas of their lives in order to keep them from buying guns.

 

The gun people do not want restrictions on automatic weapons because they want to be able to fight a guerilla war against their own government if it becomes too strong.  It's not a personal protection issue.  I agree that we should be able to do it, especially in the era of Trump (by "we," I mean, "other people who are more comfortable with guns than I am").  But maybe if you want that, you should have to join a militia that is NOT run by the government and they should have to keep the items that turn regular old guns into military grade weapons in a secure location.  The 2nd amendment makes reference to a "well-regulated militia," and that's sort of been thrown by the wayside.

 

Dan lives up near the Canadian border almost, on the far west side of the country.  I am MUCH closer, but I probably have never been to this little town.  No highways run through it.  The guy has a history of spousal abuse.  Apparently, that's a top indicator of a person who does this and those lists are kept.  I would be FINE with keeping guns out of the hands of those guys.

 

 

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Thomas Hamilton was well known in Dunblane as having mental health problems and allegations against him for child sex abuse.  Neither of which stopped him getting weapons, in a country where we don't have the legal right to own arms, and killed all those poor primary children all those years ago.

 

Spouse abuse does not necessarily indicate a mass murderer but perhaps tighter controls should be made on a man who abuses his spouse and is trained by the military, although how that would be done I don't know.   

 

That said, the news here is telling me that a neighbour heard the shots and immediately took his loaded rifle into the church and stopped the perpetrator.  If the neighbour hadn't had the right to bear arms would all the parishoners be dead?

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Not sure how it happened but the gunman had thrown down his rifle  outside the church I believe and then had a handgun and the neighbour apparently came over and shot him, then a car chase ensued and the gunman died of two bullet wounds whether he took his own life and the other shot contriubuted I don't know.  The news comes out in fits and starts, he apparently had been refused a weapon in one county but managed to get one in another one.  It must be difficult to keep track of a population of 325 million people!  He had served a year in jail for assaulting his wife, was discharged from the Air Force but that's a few years ago.  He did know three people associated with the church, his in-laws and his wife or ex-wife.  A terribly tragic event however the story goes.

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18 hours ago, momac said:

Trump signed an executive order in February  cancelling the one that the Obama administration put in place

 

I am of the opinion that Trump's overriding ambition, even if not directly stated, is to overturn every law/regulation that Obama set up.

I think what he really would like is to erase of all evidence of Obama ever having been POTUS

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1 hour ago, megustaleer said:

I am of the opinion that Trump's overriding ambition, even if not directly stated, is to overturn every law/regulation that Obama set up.

I think what he really would like is to erase of all evidence of Obama ever having been POTUS

 

I'm getting that impression too.

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That's pretty typical.  Obama felt the same way about Bush.  The big danger is using the executive orders because then Congress can't act as a brake.  Obama tried to use them like crazy, but was knocked down by the federal courts.  THANK GOODNESS because that meant that Trump's efforts would similarly not survive.

 

Okay, this is the most I can talk about American politics in any one day.  Too painful

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Meg and Luna there have been many opinions expressing the same thing, it's as if he wants to obliterate Obama's memory, Trump is a jealous and probably an insecure dreadful man, he's also enraged that Hillary Clinton won the popular vote. Just listening to him going on after the inaugural ceremony when the crowd was smaller for him than for Obama was an eye opener. I would suspect too that underneath he is angry about being less popular than a black man, just my opinion but I think his prejudices about various subjects runs deep.

 

Just hoping that the special prosecutor finds some way to remove him from office, he is a frightening man to hold the position of power and control of America's nuclear arsenal.

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I can understand your feelings about talking about American politics Binker.  I  get all immersed in it to the extent that our daughter tells me to stop watching as she figures I'm going to send my blood pressure up.  :scratchhe

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I doubt the special prosecutor will remove him from office and if he does, we are left with Pence, who isn't uncontrolled, but has very extreme views.  He only looks good by comparison.

 

No one I know can stand to watch the news anymore.  I watch a show called "Morning Joe" in the morning as I am getting ready for work and then try to avoid everything else.  It's just excruciating.  There's really no one I support in American politics anymore, so it's Trump's way of approaching things that I find so troublesome.  OOOOPs, we started a nuclear war with  North Korea is just an awful thing to think about.  So I don't.

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I don't think that there is an easy solution to this or someone would have come up with it by now.  Unfortunately, doing nothing doesn't seem to be an option either.

 

I was out and about for around half an hour yesterday and out for much longer today so the recovery is progressing, albeit slowly.  It's totally destroyed my reading rhythm so I'll just have to live that.

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Have just finished knitting a Christmas sweater for the grandbaby - that is not a sweater for Christmas, but a Christmas themed one, with an appliqued Snowman on the front. 

We are due to visit this weekend, so I abandoned the knitting I had on the go to get this one done in time to take with us. No good keeping it until Christmas, as the time for wearing it would be over, and of course he will have outgrown it by next year,

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I'll bet the wee one will look so cute in the Christmas design sweater.  Wish I could knit, I can knit plain and purl and stocking stitch but don't have a clue how to read patterns.  My neighbour has volunteered to teach me but she has done knitting for so many years she can't understand why I don't cotton on to what she's doing immediately.  So I think I'll stick with my crochet unless I sign up for a knitting class.  Are you able to take a picture of the sweater when completed?

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Binker, I had forgotten about the Vice President being a man of extreme views, he is quieter but he gets his message across so it wouldn't be a plus to have him as President.

 

Just hoping that somehow either Trump has a complete personality change (unlikely) or he is smitten with remorse at the mess he's making and steps down (even more unlikely).  But I keep hoping for something!

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17 minutes ago, momac said:

Binker, I had forgotten about the Vice President being a man of extreme views, he is quieter but he gets his message across so it wouldn't be a plus to have him as President.

 

Just hoping that somehow either Trump has a complete personality change (unlikely) or he is smitten with remorse at the mess he's making and steps down (even more unlikely).  But I keep hoping for something!

 

He seems to be doing well in China

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