Comments by The humble Farmer

Comment for "Life's Stories" (deleted)

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A Fascinating Topic (deleted)

This is what public radio is supposed to be about. Thank you for your contribution.

The humble Farmer

Comment for "Life's Stories" (deleted)

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Fascinating Topic (deleted)

Fans of Isaac Asimov long ago read his Extraterrestrial Civilizations, which covers this fascinating topic up to 1979. The math and the chemistry have probably not changed much since then, so I still dare to walk on lonely roads at night. Thanks for making this material available for broadcast. It is truly a --- well, I'll say it again -- a fascinating topic.

The humble Farmer

Comment for "Nonsense at Work: Stuffiness has a purpose" (deleted)

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Great Piece -- James McIntosh is guilty of thinking (deleted)

One wonders which political party these greedy bankers vote for.

The humble Farmer

Comment for ""Havana Nocturne: How The Mob Owned Cuba And Then Lost It To The Revolution""

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A captivating piece

A man who kicks out the mob, a brutal dictatorship and US corporations (that all worked hand in hand) can expect to be hated and boycotted by any Christian country that believes in democracy.

I'm buying the book and am telling my friends about it.

This show is what Public Radio should be all about.

Do your country a favor and run it.

The humble Farmer

Comment for "Climate Change 2008 B" (deleted)

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First class commentary on climate change by Dr. Curt Stager (deleted)

All of Dr. Stager's pieces should be aired on your station.

From what I've read of his work in National Geographic, Curt Stager gets his information by digging it out of the earth and not from reference libraries. Climate change will continue to be a topic of concern and Dr. Stager is telling us what will probably happen and why.

Treat your listeners to regular visits with this brilliant young scientist.

The humble Farmer

Comment for "Nonsense At Work: Changed by a lioness" (deleted)

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Clever (deleted)

James McIntosh is clever.

Comment for "University of Hawaii Pursues Green Initiatives"

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Why can't I leave a comment?

Thanks for this. All my life I have been told that Hawaii has a perfect temperature. They need air conditioners? Myth dispelled.

This week I also learned that Hawaii and New York and Maine and Vermont have about the highest electric bills of any state.

humble at humblefarmer dot com

Comment for "Nonsense At Work: Cooperating to compete" (deleted)

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This piece oozes wisdom (deleted)

This piece oozes wisdom.

The humble Farmer

Comment for "Photo-voltaics" (deleted)

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Interesting things, these little boxes one fills in... (deleted)

I was unable to make my comment without giving the piece a rating, which I didn't want to do because it wasn't downloaded at the time and I couldn't hear the piece.

The humble Farmer

Comment for "Photo-voltaics" (deleted)

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I am eager to hear this piece (deleted)

This piece is still being prepared as I write. Because I am presently working on photovoltaics for our home, I'd like to hear what Tom Neimisto has to say. I'll bet there are a few thousand people out there in your audience who are just like me.

The humble Farmer

Comment for "Intelligent Design?"

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Yay Fred

I must admit that I don't know what intelligent design is. I missed out somewhere in school because I don't recall anyone ever calling intelligent design to my attention. And if something about intelligent design crossed my path in my recent years of reading, it didn't register. As I listened to this piece, I got the impression that it has to do with some kind of controversy and that Professor Fred would appear to be on the side of science. Nothing wrong with shaking up people with a bit of truth from time to time. Thirty years ago, that was what Public Radio was all about. Walk it to 'em Fred, but watch your back.

The humble Farmer

Comment for "The Business of Fear"

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Air Professor Altheide's comments and learn the meaning of excellence

Professor David L. Altheide's book is Terrorism and the Politics of Fear. He is a national treasure.

The humble Farmer

Comment for "Nonsense at Work: After your vote" (deleted)

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Review of Nonsense at Work: After your vote (deleted)

As usual, James McIntosh is on the money. His good advice this week can hardly be distinguished from some memorable quotes in Mario Puzo's The Godfather, and warrants airplay:

I once worked for a very successful team of executives.

They had one critical rule.

Never let anyone outside of the family know what you are thinking.

Members could disagree and argue among themselves all they wanted to inside the meeting, but not outside the meeting. Present a unified front to the outside world: every executive must act as if he or she believes that this is the right decision. Never get angry, never make a threat --- reason with people. Make them an offer they can't refuse.

The result: most of their decisions were executed well and had successful outcomes.

Among reasonable men problems of business can always be solved.

The humble Farmer

Comment for "Teen Pregnancy... is this right?"

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Review of Teen Pregnancy... is this right?

"Why are teenage girls becoming pregnant?"

Teenage girls are becoming pregnant today for the same reason teenage girls were becoming pregnant 400 years ago.

In listening to this piece you will be pleased to hear several of the young people being interviewed mention fiscal responsibility --- money. Easy to say into a microphone in the bright of day, but at least as long as the sun is shinging they're aware of the attendant ramifications.

Any adult can understand that when youngsters have paid off one or two graduate degrees and a home, and have seen all of Europe, Asia and Africa that they want to see, they might then consider saddling themselves with the fiscal and social responsibility that comes with raising a child.

Never having got that far myself, I envy those who have.

For years my greeting to new parents has been, "Congratulations for being able to afford this wonderful child."

It is not until one is over 50 or 60 and has seen the children and grandchildren of one's contemporaries in jail or on drugs, that one gives thanks that while in high school one was a very homely boy with bad breath.

The humble Farmer

Comment for "Is our Senator guilty? Do we care?"

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Review of Is our Senator guilty? Do we care?

Great piece. I'm still laughing.

You're probably too young to remember when Boston Mayor Curley was reelected while in jail.

I remember hearing tell that if Curly heard that some poor person was cold in the winter, he'd send over a truckload of coal.

Curley looked out for people, and could probably have been reelected if he were dead.

From the sound of this piece, Stevens funneled a lot of federal money into companies in his home state. After all, what's a US Senator for? And wouldn't one certainly expect favors to be returned?

The only thing that surprises us is that we so seldom hear about it in the news.

The humble Farmer

Comment for "How Healthy is Your Lifestyle?"

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Review of How Healthy is Your Lifestyle?

Good show. If this piece is typical, you should run it every week.

But what kind of a chance does healthy living stand against ubiquitous deep-pockets advertising? In the upcoming Maine election we will vote on an item that is now promoted by signs on every corner.

All it says is: "Fed up with taxes?"

Tonight I read that Pepsie and Coke have over a million dollars invested in those signs and the outcome of that item on the ballot --- and that The Maine Medical Association has put up $40,000 to oppose it.

So --- you can help usher in a healthier America. Run this show. Promote health. --- And take your chances with your fast food restaurant friends during pledge week.

The humble Farmer

Comment for "Amazing Grace: The Story of Willie Nelson"

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Review of Amazing Grace: The Story of Willie Nelson

There is no question that America would be a different place without Willie Nelson's "On The Road Again." There is no question but what Willie Nelson is admired and appreciated by millions.

We can, therefore, thank the producers for The Story of Willie Nelson and hope that it will make many more people familiar with the life and times of this American Icon.

Willie Nelson's music is what it is, and adults with a firm background in Bach, Mozart and Count Basie would let it go at that. But gifted children might not be so kind. While still in grade school, my brother's daughter listened to Willie Nelson on television for a few minutes, then turned to her father and said, "He doesn't seem to get any better, does he?"

Run this piece. I don't know anyone who wouldn't enjoy hearing it.

The humble Farmer

Comment for "When I Used To Work at My Job"

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Review of When I Used To Work at My Job

As I write I'm waiting for a call from Barry Pip, my furnace man, who will hopefully come to my aid or tell me where to buy the anti-freeze that I need to pump into the furnace pipes.

I'm in the position of the protagonist in this well-produced story: I'm locked in here at my desk with absolutely nothing to do.

So I listened to When I Used To Work at My Job. It is clever. It made me laugh. From beginning until end. And that's worth a lot right there when your tenants are cold and you're waiting for your furnace man to return a call.

Your listeners would enjoy this piece.

The humble Farmer

Comment for "Nonsense At Work: Timeless energy" (deleted)

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Review of Nonsense At Work: Timeless energy (deleted)

Today's topic, the fact that workers are hired for their energy and not for their time or skills, is not only right on target, but places my feet firmly on my new "sleep apnea" soapbox.

I've always been exhausted in the afternoon. Eating right, swilling water, 8 miles on my bicycle each morning followed by an hour of exercise class. Short afternoon naps. Long afternoon naps. Constant medical monitoring of my thyroid. Nothing helped. Every afternoon, ever since I was a child, I would suddenly lack the energy to do anything well until the following morning.

Then, at 72 I was diagnosed with sleep apnea and was told that I had not had any neurological sleep since Roosevelt was president. In one instant I learned why I never had the energy that is required to effectively hold a 9 to 5 job.

We hear that progressive employers now encourage their employees to exercise and to eat right. The extra dividends in energy more than compensate for company time spent on a treadmill. Employers interested in generating the maximum amount of energy from employees would do well to read up on sleep apnea. You don't have to be overweight or snore to have sleep apnea.

The cure is as simple as sleeping in a mask that regulates one's breathing.

Yesterday afternoon I was building a new doorstep and cried when the sun went down. My present employer, my wife, is also delighted with my new-found energy. When told that I hadn't had any neurological sleep since Roosevelt was president, she said, "Which Roosevelt?"

Public Radio is about educating our friends in an entertaining manner. James McIntosh has earned another five stars for his perceptive commentary on energy in the workplace.

The humble Farmer

Comment for "Teen Pregnancy Part 1 - A Community Crisis"

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Review of Teen Pregnancy - A Crisis, A Response, A Reality

Another title for this important piece might well be: Review:"Teen Pregnancy - A Crisis - A Reality - Republican Vice Presidential Candidate Sarah Paley's Response."

Comment for "Whatcha Gonna Do When The Well Runs Dry?"

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Review of Whatcha Gonna Do When The Well Runs Dry?

The "Whatcha Gonna Do When The Well Runs Dry?" title in these days of the "drill, drill, drill," mantra is deceiving.

One expected a commentary on the fact that our oil reserves are finite and that --- drill where we will --- the oil powered engine will soon be a thing of the past.

Fifty or perhaps 60 years ago I recall seeing an ancient, tattered Weekly Reader that said we were running out of water. But many of us in many sections of the country are still getting along nicely because, unlike oil, water falls on us from the sky on a regular basis.

The world does have a problem which creates water shortages and hunger and pollution, so called "development" and the destruction of the economic base in small communities by big box stores. It is, of course, overpopulation.

Isaac Asimov said, "We can't continue multiplying at this rate for very long, no matter what we do."

So. Bottom line. The water crisis. The pollution crisis. The feed-the-hungry-children crisis. The whatever crisis. All of these are only secondary manifestations of overpopulation which is the world's only real crisis.

When we stop breeding like rabbits the water in the wells will sustain us.

Comment for "Crime Pays: A Look At Who's Getting Rich From The Prison Boom"

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Review of Crime Pays: A Look At Who's Getting Rich From The Prison Boom

"Crime Pays: A Look At Who's Getting Rich From The Prison Boom"

I'd also like to hear: "A Look At Who's Getting Rich From Consolidating Our Schools"

These pieces should be aired on every station in the country.

You will recall that a while back something went wrong during an execution. The skull cap or something slipped so that instead of killing the prisoner, he was only partially fried. There was a great outcry at the time. Opponents of the death penalty said that the state should be held accountable for these cruel half-executions.

It won't be long before the state will sidestep the many nasty problems encountered during executions --- they will be privatized.

The humble Farmer, St. George, Maine

Comment for "Nonsense At Work: Don't assume anything" (deleted)

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Review of Nonsense At Work: Don't assume anything (deleted)

Yes, Yes. James McIntosh is on the money: don't make assumptions. I assume this and that and I pay for it --- socially and certainly financially in lost time. My best friend is a fanatic for detail. Although he is a product of the same rural school I attended, he has 499 people working for him while I'm scraping by on Social Security. There is no doubt but what double checking everything has helped my friend become very rich. Young people. Listen to what James McIntosh is saying: don't make assumptions and you'll save yourself a lot of unnecessary grief.

Those of us with hearing loss are able understand his words because he doesn't clutter up the background with unnecessary elevator music. Young producers either don't realize or don't care that their trendy background music keeps many people from understanding what they are saying. They should be taught this in production school.

This is the kind of commentary that would be appreciated by your listeners. James McIntosh warrants a regular time slot on your station.

Comment for "Self Portrait in Two Minutes"

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Review of Self Portrait in Two Minutes

Ayuh. I laughed and I'm still laughing. "... be articulate and have a memory for detail... they're both gone..." The despair in the voice saying "they're both gone" was wonderful. America today. No time to do anything. Bombarded with meaningless sound bytes. I'm sorry --- was I supposed to do that for you yesterday?

Run things like this on a regular basis and people will stay tuned to your station. This is what public radio is supposed to be about. Don't be afraid to run good, short clips like this twice the same day. Remember that many people either weren't tuned in or weren't paying attention the first time. And don't underestimate the intelligence of your audience.

Comment for "Speaking Klingon" (deleted)

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Review of Speaking Klingon (deleted)

Sorry, but there are only five stars. I wish I had time to listen to all of this. It is a program I'd like to have on a CD so I could hear it -- many times -- when I'm driving. This is the kind of program that Public Radio is supposed to be about. By the way -- "Noam Chomsky, the famous linguist" is redundant. Never talk down to your audience. Re: how did lanugage evolve? We are familiar with the Bow-Wow Theory and the Ding-Dong Theory. But even more plausible is The humble Farmer's Itch Theory. I maintain that language evolved out of necessity when a man needed to tell his wife where to scratch his back: "Up, up, over, over more, up, up. Yes there. Right there. Ahhh."

Comment for "Will robots replace humans?"

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Review of Will robots replace humans?

A fun piece.

"Fun" should be one of the categories offered under "Tones" because I would place fun above "Informational."

Fun, informational pieces are what public radio should be about. Run them and your audience will love and respect you.

The humble Farmer

Comment for "Fabuphilitis PSA" (deleted)

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Review of Fabuphilitis PSA (deleted)

This morning I listened to a humorous fundraising piece submitted to PRX by New Hampshire Public Radio. The summary to the piece said, "Add a little humor to your pitch breaks." I laughed when I read it because not everyone agrees.

On April 8, 1978 I was asked to produce my first weekly show for Maine Public Radio. Over the 28 years I spent as a volunteer, my old-fashioned-music and humorous social commentary became an early evening staple for the intelligentsia in Northern New England and bordering Canada.

So it was inevitable that I should eventually appear on MPBN television at fundraising time. My spot was sandwiched in between the showing of Hamlet. When they put the camera on me I opened with my usual deadpan: "I hope you'll stay tuned to this Hamlet thing. It is my understanding that it has a very happy ending."

I was never permitted to help out with fundraising again.

But if you've been in Public Radio for three decades you know that our radio friends have long memories and for years afterwards I would occasionally be accosted by a radio friend who would grab me by the lapels of my jacket and say, "humble, that thing you said about Hamlet was the funniest thing I've ever seen on Public television."

Yeah, add a little humor to your pitch breaks --- our radio friends love humor -- but make sure you have tenure.

I'm Robert Skoglund, The humble Farmer, and I'm still laughing.