Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Eclipse in Indiana

On a business trip to Evansville, Indiana  
August 21, 2017 in direct path of the eclipse.

More than 99% of light was gone during this photo, but you can't tell because of the auto correcting camera. It was a spooky hazy weird atmosphere.

The nearby CVS lights came on (like they would do at sunset)!

Then it was over and life as we know it, resumed.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

My Trumpian View

This is how I think this guy really, really feels about poor people, middle income people, education, veterans, homeless, the military, our friends and neighbors in the world, our federal, state, county and city governments, crumbing infrastructure, the ACA and the role they play in our day-to-day lives.
How he feels about everything in the world - except making money.

He's on government insurance for the rest of his life, 
along with Secret Service butlers, chauffeurs, schedulers, the finest seats in any house, restaurant, stadium, arena, theater or airplane.  

Why should he care? 

He's fiddling while the world about him, the world we live in, is crumbling - and he doesn't really give a damn!


Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Recent Albuquerque Neighborhood Sightings

I'm going to include a few pictures here...the first two were taken at the UNM Championship Golf Course in recent weeks.  Fence Watchers.  A Roadrunner, the New Mexico State Bird...and, in the distance, what I believe to be a Coopers Hawk, on the fence watching the 10th hole.  We also saw a coyote, but I couldn't click fast enough.

And, then there are these photos taken within 10 blocks of our home.

Reports are it was a car theft ring headquarters.

But fear not, the neighborhood ain't going to hell!

Two blocks away:

And, then there's this...

The storefront on the left was at one time a WalMart.  
Then it became a Hobby Lobby.  
Now, it's nothing.

The center storefront was once a Hastings record/book store.
Now it's nothing.

And this, on August 5, 2017 -- 86 days before Halloween

This was a Raley's Supermarket, followed by an upscale furniture store.
Now it's filled with ghosts, goblins, Wonder Woman, and ...


Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Summertime Scouting

Been a while since I posted anything.  Nothing to say.  However, I did come across this photo today while surfing the 'net - and it brought to mind the years I spent in the scouts - and the respect we had for our leaders.

I am hopeful that the leadership of the Jamboree that witnessed a political speech yesterday by POTUS has sufficient guts to tell their scouts, "We should show proper respect to the person who holds the office of the President of the United States.  However, we do not have to be a cheering squad for what he says!"


Thursday, July27
Statement From:
Chief Scout Executive for the Boy Scouts of America Michael Surbaugh 

"I want to extend my sincere apologies to those in our Scouting family who were offended by the political rhetoric that was inserted into the jamboree. That was never our intent. The invitation for the sitting U.S. President to visit the National Jamboree is a long-standing tradition that has been extended to the leader of our nation that has had a Jamboree during his term since 1937. It is in no way an endorsement of any person, party or policies. For years, people have called upon us to take a position on political issues, and we have steadfastly remained non-partisan and refused to comment on political matters. We sincerely regret that politics were inserted into the Scouting program."

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Golf Outing

Went to the US Open Golf Tournament @ Erin Hills Golf Course near Erin, Wisconsin.  Had a chance to take a fake picture with Steve Stricker, who lives just down the road apiece from the site of the event.

Buddy Tom Horan and I scoured the hills of Erin Hills (as did about 50,000 people on Saturday) - had a good time and a couple root beer floats, too.

Rickie Fowler is up there in orange pants.

There was talk of the "tall fescue" grass.  Well..it was tall!

Break time!

Friday, June 9, 2017

Heinrich & Montoya

In the 1970's one of New Mexico's United States Senators, Joseph M. Montoya, most prominent roles was that of being a member of the "Watergate Committee" - the group that met and eventually headed the demise of Richard Nixon.

Fast forward about 35 years, one of New Mexico's United States Senators, Martin Heinrich, is a member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence - the group that's trying to figure out how Russia got involved in our election process, and who might have been complicit in that endeavor.

Facts sometimes are stranger than fiction.

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Tierra Amarilla Courthouse Raid 50 Years Later

Fifty years ago, June 5, 1967, I was wandering around the KOAT-7 Big Seven Newsroom wondering about the stories of the day. Then came the 1000 cycle tone from the New Mexico State Police radio (you know that long beeeep that we hear when there’s a test of the Emergency Notification System).

It sounded like something like this:
“Attention all cars and all stations, this station is now 10-33.”

We were accustomed to the dolling on-an-on of police and fire radios – BUT – this was different.

10-33 meant something BIG was happening.

Knowing not what, the few of us in the newsroom (maybe 6 at most – 3 of whom actually went out to cover the news) started scouring around looking for cameras, film, lights. We were preparing to depart for parts unknown, just in case this was a big deal.

Well, within the hour I had maneuvered my way into covering the big story.  It was the Rio Arriba County Courthouse in Tierra Amarilla.

The leader of a group of heirs to old Spanish Land Grants, Reies Tijerina, and a band of followers had just attempted to kidnap the District Attorney (who wasn’t even there), gotten into a gunfight with the state police, and taken a deputy sheriff and a newsman covering the story, hostage.

Now, mind you, this was before cellphones and satellites – it was before computers.

Before leaving the newsroom for a chartered plane, I called the Justice of the Peace in Chama (or maybe it was the Mayor) and asked if he’d meet our plane at a landing strip at Chama Land and Cattle Company – about 10 miles or so away, and take me to the action.  I don’t remember his name, but he did just as I asked.  

So, away I go, in a plane leaving Albuquerque headed for points north – out of contact with the world, except for the airplane radio, and they didn’t care. 

I didn’t know what to expect.

It took an hour or so to get there.   

The landing strip, really a graded and maintained pasture, was moist from recent rains. We went for it anyway.  We were there to cover the news!

Still not quite sure about what was happening, we rolled on to the scene in that tiny northern New Mexico town.

I did a quick film interview with Benny Naranjo, the Rio Arriba County Sheriff.  He told me what had happened.  Sadly, the film of that interview is gone, and I don’t recall the specific quotes.  I ran off a few more scenes, then gave the film to the pilot and told him to get it back to Albuquerque – I’d stay around and cover the story.

Tijerina and some of his followers showed up at the courthouse that day for a hearing on a somewhat related matter, his brother and other followers were being arraigned on charges from other incidents involving the land grant struggle.

Well, they didn’t get the District Attorney, instead they shot up the courthouse, wounded the jailer and a state police officer, kidnapped a wire service reporter – all of which launched a massive manhunt that lasted for days.

Late that afternoon of June 5, 1967, headquartered at a US Forest Service ranger station in Canjilon, about 20 miles away, law enforcement of all uniforms commanded by New Mexico State Police Chief Joe Black went on the search.  

Lieutenant Governor E. Lee Francis called out the National Guard under the command of Adjutant General John Pershing Jolly. Tanks rolled, without ammunition, but it was a show of force.

By Martin Salazar / Journal Staff Writer Tuesday, January 20th, 2015  
Copyright © 2015 Albuquerque Journal

It had been nearly 40 years, but the images were still etched in former Gov. David Cargo’s mind. The day was June 5, 1967, and a caravan of New Mexico National Guard trucks and tanks was headed down Interstate 25, capping a bizarre day that thrust the obscure mountain village of Tierra Amarilla in northern Rio Arriba County into the national spotlight.

Some two dozen land grant activists had taken control of the courthouse, shot up the place, critically wounded a couple of law enforcement officers, and kidnapped a journalist and another officer.

By that evening – as Cargo was flying back into New Mexico from Michigan – the state had sprung to action. The lieutenant governor had mobilized the National Guard and a massive manhunt was underway to capture the raiders.

“We came in over Santa Fe,” recalled Cargo, who was governor at the time. “You could look down on La Bajada Hill. As I looked down, I saw all these trucks and some tanks, and I thought, what in the hell is going on?”

Editor’s note: As the 40th anniversary of the Tierra Amarilla courthouse raid approached in 2007, then­ Journal staff writer Martin Salazar sought out former New Mexico Gov. David Cargo, who was governor at the time of the raid. Salazar is now publisher and editor of the Las Vegas Optic newspaper in Las Vegas, N.M. Cargo died in 2013. Here is a republication of Salazar’s June 3, 2007, report for the Journal.

Tuesday (June 5, 2007) will mark the 40th anniversary of Tierra Amarilla’s infamous day – the day tensions over lost land grants boiled over into a blaze of bullets, spilling the blood of a State Police officer and jailer.

The activists – called the Alianza Federal de Mercedes – believed huge areas of land around the Southwest awarded as land grants by the Mexican or Spanish governments had been wrongfully taken away after the region became part of the United States in the mid­19th century.

Participants say the raid brought the injustices to light and helped spawn some changes. Forty years later, land grant activists are still fighting, but they’re now appealing to Congress to right the wrongs.

It was a rainy Monday afternoon when the land grant activists stormed the courthouse in their quest to make a citizen’s arrest of then­ District Attorney Alfonso Sanchez.

Three days before the raid, Sanchez blocked a meeting of the Alianza in Coyote. Eleven members of the group were arrested near Canjilon on various charges. Eight of them were slated to be arraigned on the day of the raid.

Alianza members – led by Reies Lopez Tijerina, a charismatic former evangelical minister – wanted to arrest Sanchez for violating their rights.
But Sanchez was 92 miles away in Santa Fe fielding telephone calls from villagers warning that something was about to happen and coordinating with law enforcement officials in an effort to head it off, Sanchez told the Journal during a recent interview.

The Alianza sent a few members to scout the courthouse. After getting the OK, about two dozen Alianza members crammed into a truck, a station wagon and a car and headed to it.

Tijerina wore a white handkerchief over part of his face as he and others invaded the courthouse, said Baltasar Martinez, one of the raiders.

Eulogio Salazar, a jailer, was shot in the face and chest as he tried to jump out a courthouse window. State Police officer Nick Saiz was hit in the left arm and chest while inside the courthouse.

Both men survived the wounds, but Salazar was later murdered, 10 days before he was to have testified against Tijerina. Tijerina has denied any involvement in Salazar’s murder, which remains unsolved.

Those in the courthouse were rounded up in the County Clerk’s Office. Among them was then United Press International reporter (and later Albuquerque Journal editor and columnist) Larry Calloway. He recalled being taken at gunpoint through the courthouse halls that were spattered with blood.

After realizing that the district attorney wasn’t at the courthouse, most of the raiders fled. But in the chaos, Martinez and another raider were left behind.

They took Calloway and a sheriff’s deputy hostage, putting them in a pickup truck and driving through calm streets shooting up police cars, Calloway wrote soon after his ordeal. Both men eventually escaped their captors.

The raiders fled into the mountains.

State Police from throughout northern New Mexico rushed to Tierra Amarilla. A State Police helicopter with two shotgun riders aboard swooped in and out over the hills around Canjilon.

And National Guard troops on tanks scoured the countryside looking for those who had shot up the courthouse.

Tijerina and other raiders were eventually nabbed or turned themselves in. Tijerina ended up serving two years in federal prison for an Alianza takeover of the Echo Amphitheater in the Carson National Forest near Abiquiu.

In the aftermath of the raid, Cargo and Sanchez would point fingers at one another, Sanchez saying Cargo encouraged the group by coddling them and leading them on and Cargo saying Sanchez forced the standoff through his hard­nosed actions. A reflective Cargo said conditions were probably ripe for the raid. “Everything just came together,” he said. “You had the war in Vietnam. You had unrest all over the country. You had assassinations. You had everything going on, a lot of unrest.”

From Larry Calloway, the UPI reporter http://larrycalloway.com/courthouse-raid/

In today’s electronic world, the Twitter would explode with coverage of that raid, satellite trucks from around the world would beam live TV from sleepy northern New Mexico, and our little ol’ Land of Enchantment would have publicity nobody could pay for.

A native northern New Mexican, I can say, it wasn’t our proudest moment – and many of the complaints that have been registered by those who believe they were wronged by the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo (go here for more) may never be answered.

One lasting memory I have of that incident, and subsequent reporting visits to Tierra Amarilla, that might reflect how serious the situation was, State Police Sgt Richard C de Baca inquired of me, “Do you have a gun with you?”

I didn’t.

“You should get one,” he said.

The next day I went to H. Cook Sporting Goods in Albuquerque and purchased a .38 caliber police revolver – and for a long time took it with me every time I went “up north”. 

H. Cook Sporting Goods is no longer, and neither is my ownership of that pistol.

While this was happening in little ol’ remote northern New Mexico, the world turned focus to the Arab-Israeli 6-Day War. 
From Wikipedia: A war fought in 1967 by Israel on one side and Egypt, Syria, and Jordan on the other. Israel, victorious, took over the Golan Heights, the Jordanian portion of Jerusalem, the Jordanian West Bank of the Jordan River, and alarge piece of territory in northeastern Egypt, including the Sinai Peninsula, which contains Mount Sinai. Israel still occupies all these territories except the Sinai Peninsula, which it gave back to Egypt in 1982. Israel intains that its security would be enormously endangered if it withdrew from the other places.

(Photos used in this posting came off the internets.  The picture of the donkey and the tank was taken by Ray Cary of the Albuquerque Journal.  Unknown source for the picture of Reies Tijerina.  The picture of the Rio Arriba County Courthouse could have been taken by anyone.)