Obama’s birth certificate not a fake

I confess that when I saw the videos “proving” that Obama’s birth certificate was faked, I believed them. However the multiple layers is an artifact of Adobe optimization for OCR.

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Terry Jones, the Dove World Outreach Center and ‘Burn a Koran Day’

As far as I’m concerned, all books are sacred and those who burn them are evil. Terry Jones a 58 year old wacko preacher of the Dove World Outreach Center has managed to capture the attention of the international community with an ill conceived stunt of burning copies of the Koran on September 11th. It seems like an ironic action for a church that is named for a symbol of Peace.

Considering the protests after the Danish cartoon, one can only imagine the possible reaction to this event. Terry will get his moment in the spotlight, his “church” will get support and maybe add to their numbers. It’s a tragedy.

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Beware of “free” Reversatrol Ultra

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I should have known better. After watching a compelling 60 minutes piece on the health benefits of Reversatrol, the magic ingredient in red wine I made the foolish mistake of signing up for a “free” sample. I figured I would give it a try and see if could do undo the ravages of age. I thought I was rather savvy about these things.

After almost a month I don’t feel any better but I don’t feel any worse, at least until today when my credit card statement arrived. There on the page was a charge for $83.18 for a company named EXPRESSBERRY. Those are some expensive berries and I can buy two cases of 2 buck chuck for under $80 and get all my Reversatrol and enjoy it more.

As an elder I am supposed to wise, but they got me in terms of the agreement which I have included for your amusement. I missed this and apparently thousands of other folks have also.

When you go to the site a timer starts and you informed that you only have a few minutes to sign up for the “free” sample. This feature makes it unlikely that you will read the terms of this agreement.  The site has a video of the 60 minute piece, pictures of Barbara Walters or Oprah or someone named Dr Oz (Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain).

Maybe Barbara Walters or Oprah can pick up the tab for this since their names are attached to the site.

I won’t provide a link, instead I would encourage you to Google “Reversatrol Ultra Scam” instead. It’s not legally a scam, it’s just devious. I’m sure they have many products like Acai berries and something named Rez Q. But I’m  sure they all have the “free” offer.

I am returning the unopened bottle they sent with a proof of delivery notice and hoping I get a partial or full refund. This was the advice given by my Credit Card provider.

There is no such thing as a free lunch I guess.

Here is a copy of the “terms of agreement”

 

Free Trial Period

When Customer orders the free trial of Rez Q (the “Product”) and agrees to pay the shipping and processing fee described on the order page, Company will ship Customer a 30-day supply of Product. Customer will have ten days from the date of order (the “Free Trial Period”) to review the Product and decide whether Customer would like to keep it and begin Customer’s subscription or contact Company to return the Product as described below. If Customer chooses to keep the Product beyond the Free Trial Period, Customer does nothing. Company will charge Customer’s credit card $78.23 and Customer’s subscription will begin automatically once the Free Trial Period has expired. As long as Customer’s subscription is active, about every month Company will send Customer a new 30-day supply of Product and will charge Customer’s credit card the same low monthly price plus $6.95 for shipping and processing. If at any time Customer wishes to end Customer’s subscription and discontinue receiving additional 30-day supplies of Product, Customer must contact Company’s customer service department as outlined below. In order to avoid being charged for any subsequent Product, Customer must contact Company before shipment of Customer’s next 30-day supply of Product. Company is NOT responsible for any overdraft fees or other fees resulting from customers using a credit card with an insufficient balance to cover the above costs. It is the sole responsibility of the Customer to ensure funds are available to cover all applicable fees and taxes.

Capital One “Convenience Checks”

Stop with these checks already! What do I have to do to convince this company to stop sending me blank checks with MY NAME on them? I’ve canceled my account (after I noted the interest rate would be 29.7%), I’ve informed the 3 credit agencies, dma choice and anything else I could find to stop it.

Consider how these BLANK checks are sitting in our mail boxes with our names on them. The envelopes are not inconspicuous with the prominent “Capital One” logo screaming out to thieves “Take me, cash me and stick the bill to the name pre-printed on the check”.

Of course the company assures us that we have zero liability if they are stolen or misused. I wondered about that a bit until I came across a small comment on the last page:

$0 fraud liability claims are subject to verification and investigation.

Isn’t that special? Unwanted checks arrive with MY NAME on them and the crack CSI team at Capital One will investigate if someone steals them. Sure they will!

I was going to include an online link to abuses but after finding so many horror stories, I’ve decided to leave this to you. Simply Google “Convenience Check Fraud” and stand back.

If you know anyway to stop these, please leave a comment.

Business Reply Mail Project

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We all get the pre-paid envelopes for Credit Card offers, Surveys, Car Insurance and more. It is not easy to opt out of these mailings and maybe not such a good idea. The post office depends on the income generated from these first class mailings and we should take steps to help our post office financially. I would suggest that instead of packing the envelope with the original filler material, you include recipes, magazine articles, pictures of your dog or cat. The people that open these mailings do not have the best job. Imagine how it would brighten their day to receive an nice recipe for a Kielbasa and sauerkraut dish, or a nice family photo of the 3 cats. Or perhaps a donation of  grocery coupons. These folks at the mail processing facility will appreciate the chance to save some money. Times are tough.

When I do my reply business mailings to these organizations I’ve decided to include a link to this blog posting to facilitate a means of feedback between the public and the mail processors. I think the donated material should be either entertaining or useful.

If you are employed at one of these facilities and spend 8 hours or more a day opening mail, and appreciate the effort that we take in selecting items for you, add a comment (or request). Thanks for all you do!

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Plan a Victory Garden for 2009

I’m a great believer in the phrase “Think Globally, Act Locally”. We are facing all types of challenges as a nation.   I’ve been growing a garden for 0ver 35 years, mostly as a means of getting fresh vegetables and learning about plants.

Many of my friends and family grow a garden. In World War II these were called “Victory Gardens” and the impetus came from no less than the first lady Eleanor Roosevelt, who established a garden at the white house. In 1943 Americans planted over 20 million Victory Gardens and the harvest accounted ofr nearly a third of the vergetables consumed in that year.
I dedicated a bit of the front lawn to tomatoes these last 2 years and realized after a disappointing crop that I need to initiate some crop rotation. I will be ADDING more garden space and REMOVING more useless lawn.
I was heartened to read a great open letter by Michael Pollard describing what the next president can and should do to remake the way we grow and eat our food. The link is “Farmer in Chief”.
Michael Pollan was interviewed on “Fresh Air” and I listened to the podcast. It may be heard a this link “Food As A National Security Issue”

Are you driving in stealth mode? Please don’t!

Finally a break in the winter cycle of ice and snow then snow and ice and cold.

The temperature broke 50 degrees here in New Hampshire with a light drizzle. The combination of warm humid air and a snow cover has produced pockets of dense fog.

I was out on a rare shopping excursion and was amazed at the number of cars and trucks that are driving around without turning their headlights on. They are absolutely invisible. A number of these vehicles are “fog colored”.. muted grays and white. Many states have a “wipers on, headlights on” law. New Hampshire with it’s motto of “Live Free or Die” does not have this law. I love this state but sometimes the motto seems to be “Live Free AND Die”. Isn’t it common sense to make your vehicle as visible as possible to prevent other’s from running into you?

I am going to label this post as “Common Sense” because part of my role as an elder is to dispense wisdom. “Common Sense” is a misnomer, it is actually accumulated wisdom gained by a multitude of spectactular mishaps.

In the meantime, please turn on your lights when it’s foggy or you need to use the wipers. Remember to turn them off when you leave the vehicle if your car is so badly designed that it doesn’t have an alarm (idea: engineering design flaws are a good subject for a posting).

I want to keep you around, I can use the readership for this drivel.