Desert Companion - December 2015

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on December 24 (0) Oh, who’re you kidding? All your Christmas shopping is last-minute (-5)

7. When you hear about the “war on Christmas,” you … Are appalled at the way a holiday devoted to wonderment and giving has become a flashpoint in the culture wars (6) Look for a recruiter (-4)


how’s your Christmas spirit: a quiz 1. Thanksgiving is over. You are now … Googling eggnog recipes (5) Googling the cost of surface-to-reindeer missiles (-3)

2. You’ll feel seasonal spirit when you … See Andrea Bocelli’s annual holiday concert December 5 at the MGM Grand (4) Are visited by the Ghost of Christmas Shut the Hell Up (-4)

3. You open your window Christmas morning to see a lad walking by. What do you shout? “Hallo, my fine fellow! Do you know the

8. Regarding Trans-Siberian Orchestra …

poulterer’s, in the next street but one?” (10) “Get off my lawn!” (-2) “What are you doing with my TV?!” (0)

4. Santa’s elves bring to mind … The magical joy of making kids happy (5) A sudden urge to play Whack-a-Mole (-5)

5. TV special you’re looking forward to Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer (10) CSI North Pole (-7)

6. For last-minute shopping, you … Go to the finest stores, despite bad parking and heavy crowds (10) Grab coasters from whatever bar you’re in

“Their power-pop versions of holiday classics are my December soundtrack!” (7) “Who let them leave Siberia?” (0) “One more song and I’ll turn those reindeer missiles on myself.” (-3)

9. How do you feel about colleagues wearing festive holiday socks? “They add cheer to the workplace!” (7) “They should be used to gag anyone who gave the previous answer.” (0)

10. ’Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house … “Not a creature was stirring,” and so on (5) “Why the sudden interest in my house?” (0)

Answer Key 50-78: You’re the love child of Burl Ives and It’s a Wonderful Life 35-59: You’re slightly more holly-jolly than bah-humbug Below 35: Marley’s ghost will lend you some chains


“Each state shall provide adequate facilities to treat persons with mental illness and/or chronic homeDecember 15 is Bill of Rights Day; lessness. There shall be no legal repercussion to those who give reasonable assistance, by taking what protection, we wondered, into physical custody persons who would notable are, or appear to be, mentally ill attorneys add to or chronically homeless. Consent that document if they could? need not be given by the person who is placed in custodia legis. Thereafter compassionate and appropriate treatment shall be given to said person. A hearing shall be held before an impartial tribunal to assure that such procedures are being followed. At said hearing a presumptive release day shall be established, with terms and condition for release to be set. (Note: This amendment would shield one from liability for conduct which heretofore has provided a basis for civil rights violation and assaults and/or batteries, which have stopped the state from being able to address the serious issues of personal impairment.)” Oscar Goodman The Bill of Rights needs a “Right to Economic Security.” The U.S. is the

wealthiest empire that ever was. Meanwhile, all but a handful of us toil under the fear that our old age may be spent penniless, that we will not be able to afford a decent education for our children, that health care may be out of our reach. Wealth inequality relegates most Americans to a virtual caste system. I have an idea to fix this, but it is hardly original — in fact, it has been waiting to be enacted for more than 70 years. In 1944, Franklin Delano Roosevelt gave a State of the Union address in which he called for this “second bill of rights.” FDR recognized the evil in the concentration of economic wealth and the deprivation of the many to support the luxuries of the few: “Necessitous men are not free men.” Therefore, FDR called for a set of rights that added up to “economic security.” Constituent parts of that right included the right to a job, food, shelter, an education and “protection from the economic fears of old age, sickness, accident and unemployment.” A mere four years later, the United Nations saw the wisdom in FDR’s vision. In 1948, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights enshrined these principles in Articles 23, 24 and 25. It is about time that we step up as a world leader and show that we can stand as a civilized nation, not a nation of serfs and masters. The Constitution needs a right to economic security. Marc J. Randazza

December 2015


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