Monday, September 01, 2008
Well, flea season is in high gear here in southern California. For years now it's been a non-issue. We've been using Frontline and the results have been amazing. It's a truly fantastic product. When I was a kid, having pets meant having fleas. That's just the way it was. Then along came Frontline and the world changed. All of a sudden fleas were a thing of the past...and with them, flea borne diseases. Better Living through chemistry indeed.
Then a couple of weeks ago Tibby (pictured above along with your author's rather handsome leg) came back from doggie day care covered in fleas. We were horrified especially since we thought he was current on his Frontline- "How could this be?" we wondered.
We bought some flea shampoo and redid his flea treatment. In short order the dog seemed fine but now the cats suddenly were infested. Then I began to wonder: "do fleas develop resistance to Frontline?"...OK it wasn't me, it was The Wife...truth be told I was pretty incurious about the whole thing but this is my story and I'm taking the credit...now where was I...oh yeah...well it turns out they do. A quick web search turned up this:
This seems simple and even obvious. If you want to make a resistant population then keep exposing the population to the same insecticide and after enough generations your population will be resistant. If you switch to another insecticide, the group will be totally sensitive to the new insecticide. After a few more generations, change again.
Lesson learned. Rotate flea control products.
Governor Palin is not merely, as Jay describes her, "all-American", but hyper-American. What other country in the developed world produces beauty queens who hunt caribou and serve up a terrific moose stew? As an immigrant, I'm not saying I came to the United States purely to meet chicks like that, but it was certainly high on my list of priorities. And for the gun-totin' Miss Wasilla then to go on to become Governor while having five kids makes it an even more uniquely American story. Next to her resume, a guy who's done nothing but serve in the phony-baloney job of "community organizer" and write multiple autobiographies looks like just another creepily self-absorbed lifelong member of the full-time political class that infests every advanced democracy.
At the metaphysical level, these debates could go on forever. But on the practical level, the solution is simple: the owner of the property makes the rules. When government became unlimited and this simple understanding of private property was lost, the stage for social civil war was set. As usual, the Puritans are the aggressors. In the name of peace, the rest of us keep surrendering. At some point, enough people will realize they have run out of room.
It is also a stark reminder of the obvious. The pro-life people are certainly right about one thing – life does begin at the moment of conception (when else?). Those of us who are pro-choice must wrestle with that uncomfortable fact even as we assert our political view. In nearly every abortion, a decision is being made between the life (or convenience) of the mother and an already growing and developing life with unique DNA. As much of a religious agnostic as I am, I am seriously disturbed by that.
Still, I remain pro-choice because I would prefer the government not be involved in these highly personal decisions. Also, as we all must acknowledge, if abortions become illegal, they will continue anyway and, once again, become more or less a privilege of the rich. Pretty repellent.
And yet, as I said, I am moved by Sarah Palin’s decision to have her fifth child. In this regard, her morals and her courage are impeccable. I wonder if I would have done the same.
As predicted by your humble author.
Given the slobbering and fawning media coverage of Obama's speech and the admitted drama of the moment, it might have been expected that Obama should receive an 8-10 point bounce and be leading this race by 10 or 11 points right now. That simply hasn't happened. It might be due to the fact that Obama's speech, while high drama, contained no lines that anyone still remembers. I'm already struggling to remember one myself. It might be due to the fact that the Palin pick stomped on the convention news cycle, strangled it until the point of death, and then set it on fire and tossed it in a ditch by the side of the road.