Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Some Closure for the Walsh Family...After 27 Years

By now those of you who were not familiar with incident surrounding John Walsh (host of "America's Most Wanted") are now intimately acquainted with the gory details of his son's death. For those who live under a rock-John Walsh's son Adam vanished from a Sears department store in Hollywood, FL on July 27th, 1981. Two weeks later and 120 miles away, Adam's decapitated head was found in a canal by two fisherman. Adam's body would never be found.

As I understand, there was a hat found near the cranium, one containing evidence of the perp. Ottis Toole, a slow (considered near if not mentally retarded) pedophile was in the vicinity. Evidence has always linked him to Adam Walsh. Toole was a disgusting human being if he could even be labeled such. Apparently, he palled around with Henery Lee Lucas (another sociopath). The nature of their relationship is rather blurry but they both committed unspeakable acts of homicide and mutilation. Ottis was a necrophiliac and was thought to eat his victims, much like Dohmar. I'm not sure how much truth there is to that. Both Toole and Lucas had horrible up bringings, which most likely contributed to their sociopathic behavior. Having said that you cannot blame everything on your parents (a serious nature vs nurture debate which I will save for another blog). Lucas was also thought to be a pathological liar, so it's hard to nail down details and I won't bore you with the macabre details of their youths. Long storyshort, there were thought to be some blood stains on a carpet which wastaken from Toole's home - stains which may have matched the blood of Adam Walsh. However, DNA testing was hardly existent and the police lost the evidence (carpet with the stain) so their leads went cold, as did the case.

John Walsh always figured Ottis Toole for Adam's murder. Toole even confessed to the crime (and then recanted on a couple of occasions, one being his death bed, which his niece bore
witness and testified to). However, Toole died in prison on September15th, 1996, from liver failure at the ripe old age of 46. He was serving five life consecutive life sentences, having been convicted of a series of other unrelated murders. John Walsh and his wife went on to lead a life of advocacy and they remain committed to doing so, Adam will not have died in vain. John Walsh has brought home many children and locked up many criminals thanks to his FOX show "America's Most Wanted".

Moreover, Walsh aided in passing the federal Missing Children's Assistance Act of 1984, which in turn created the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. He changed the world, in my opinion. It was only yesterday that the Chief of the Hollywood FL Police Department apologized for "lapses" in the investigation. While he also stated there was no singular piece of evidence linking the departed Toole to the murder, they had enough evidence to rule him so. My point in writing this is that I truly hope that this brings theWalsh family some peace and a sense of justice. It was beyond a tragedy, but what was possibly worse was the lack of closure. Having had a family member go missing, I can think of nothing more painful. It is truly a crime to not know and it is, as Walsh put it, "torture." My own biggest nightmare is not a tragedy, but an unresolved tragedy - something I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy. While we will never know what was running through the mind of Ottis Toole, and how he could have done this to a sweet innocent six-year-old boy, we know tonight that it happened at his hands.

Reve Walsh candidly described the loss of Adam 27 years later as a Phantom Limb Syndrome. The sensation of him remains even now. It's something you never get over but learn to work around she said. I understand, it's not really ever something you never "get over" but you learn t o live with the broken heart and the pain.

To this day I still wake-up in cold sweats. Thankfully, those nightmares are few and far between but I would imagine I'll be dealing with for the rest of my life.

I wish the Walsh family, and especially Adam, some peace and solace after an excruciating 27 years.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

So What Do We Do In a Depression?

A friend of mine brought an interesting debate to my attention recently. In times like these entertainment tends to do well, the question is do people want to see comedy or doom and gloom (things like the history of the Great Depression, TGD, of 1929)? I think the bigger question is why are we, as consumers of media, looking to these specific genres?

Firstly, I think people are looking to both comedy and doom and gloom. My gut feeling is that people are looking to comedy because we are all so damn depressed we want to be cheered up and taken out of our current situation even if only for an hour or two. Per Dr. Nancy Snyderman's Today Show segment on how happiness is infectious, people want to be happy and not heavy -hearted all day long...what better way to achieve that?

I also think people are looking to the doom and gloom (specifically information on TGD) because people are looking for hope. Not because people want to be more depressed but because people want to see the light at the end of the tunnel. People are looking for trends trying to see how others survived in an even worse climate. Lastly, there is the talk show effect at play, seeing people worse off somehow makes one feel better. That may not be the prettiest side of human nature, but I do believe it's there. For that reason I believe more people will be looking to this source/genre.

Recession or Depression?

I'm glad that this week the announcement came down that we are in a recession. That said, it's about a year late. The question now is-are we in a "recession" or a depression? It may just be me but if the financial downturn and job loss continues in to 2009 won't that constitute a depression? By no means do I personally think this will resemble the Great Depression of 1929 but I can't help but wonder.

On my way home for Thanksgiving last week I noticed significantly more homeless in Penn Station. It really breaks my heart. I've noticed fewer people on the bus and fewer people in my apartment building. None of us are immune or safe this time and unfortunately I can only imagine this is going to worsen before it corrects its self.

It's amazing and I'd like to place the blame entirely on Bush but I know it's completely his fault (though I think a majority of it is). I guess that is the price you pay for putting a reckless dumbass in a position of extreme power. I understand not saying the word recession out loud because it shakes the already unstable consumer confidence, thereby effecting the market...however a year after the fact I'm not even sure it's relevant. Did people wince or laugh when they heard that announcement?

Friday, October 10, 2008

We Will be in McPain (If He's Elected)

I’m the first to admit that Rolling Stone is somewhat slanted. Oddly enough, I don’t normally read it; however, a friend of mine sent me the link below:

This is something everyone needs to read. I’ve never been a fan of John McCain’s. I’ve never trusted him; perhaps it’s his tone or his temper. Perhaps it’s the fact he constantly flips on issues. After reading this article I was furious and appalled. I’ve never fought on the front lines. I have very mixed feelings on war…I went to a Quaker high school for God’s sake. Violence is not usually my first course of action. Having said that, I have nothing but the utmost respect for people who lay it on the line for the rest of us. It’s thanks to those people I’m able to sleep at night and sit here and write this blog right now. My stepfather, uncle and grandfathers have all fought in a war. These are men that I love and admire greatly. They put themselves in danger for me and for you. They hid behind nothing.

McCain, on the other hand, hid behind a name, a rank and a legacy of great men before him. I think he may even be more dangerous than Bush! McCain, like Bush, comes from a wealthy, privileged legacy. He is no P.O.W. He was captured with several other men. I believe this was the first time he actually crashed his plane because he completed a mission and stayed on-target. The man had a previous flight record of crashing a lot, he started a large fire resulting in lives lost and chased a lot of women. He knows nothing of staying the course, he knows nothing about strategy. He is not a great man. I think the above article says it all. He is an angry, misogynistic man who will throw us all under the bus to get what he wants.
In the movie Primary Colors, the Clinton character Jack Stanton (Travolta) said:

You don't think Lincoln was a whore before he was president? He had to tell his stories and smile his back-country grin. He did that so one day he'd have the opportunity. . . to stand before the nation and appeal to our better nature. That's where the bullshit stops. That's what it's all about. Making the most of it, doing it the right way. You know that there are plenty of people in this game. . . .who don't think that way. They'll sell their souls. . . .Iie to people, divide them, play on their fears, for nothing. Just for the prize

Well “my friends,” McCain is the very person Travolta warned us of. He doesn’t care about you or I, he wants to win because he wants to win. He has a horrible temper which is more of a danger than anything. How can he possibly be diplomatic? He gets angry and has a tantrum when things don’t go his way. The Rolling Stone article mentions that he never played well with others (clearly this hasn’t changed), and that he used to have these fits of rage where he would hold his breath until he passed out. I’m no doctor but it seems like he suffers from some personality disorders, possibly even schizophrenia. He should not be allowed to run!!! I cannot imagine what would happen if he won. There are no words for my contempt. He constantly criticizes Obama’s association with Ayers (which is tenuous at best) but hello…Keating! That was not such a tenuous association he vacationed at the man’s house!

Long story short, here is a man who leaves his wife because she is left crippled after an accident. He drives his current wife to drugs and alcohol. He bullies everyone because he wants what he wants. He was never a great student or a true hero. He DID NOT spend five years as a prisoner (he spent two). He himself may not have lied about his record, but he sure lets everyone exaggerate it. Is there a difference? He coughed up info under duress, while other men died because of their silence. Please…this is the man you want running the country? We don’t have to agree on everything. We may even differ on some of the fundamentals, but I’m begging you not to let this man take over. He is going to do what he is done so many times before…sacrifice everyone else but himself.

Forget the fact that he has limited military knowledge, poor credentials and an explosive temper; he is not a good man. He will not make decisions in our interest. He shouldn’t be president!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Hard Knocks Economy

So it's getting down to the wire. Tonight is one of two debates left, (not that a debate will make or break a candidate, at least it hasn’t historically). While I do find this to be the most gruesome and fascinating blood sport it's also scaring me. I'm not sure people really understand what's riding on this. At some point I'd like to have my own business, and that ain't gonna happen when the economy is crippled. How will I be able to take care of my parents and send my kids through school, given I'm not even married, but some day (I may be…some very far off day). It's not fair that people like me who work hard and at some points have taken on a second job to just pay rent, have to put our dreams on hold because of these things.

What the hell is with the bailout plan by the way? I'm no economic guru but it doesn't seem like a great idea. It seems to be a day late and dollar short to bail out CEOs on Wall Street. Perhaps I don't have a great handle on this, but that is because the pros of this plan have not been clearly conveyed. Seems to me Mr. Bush broke the bank and created a funnel, bringing down the economies of our neighbors and allies with us. If you break the great American Bank and then go on to break the World Bank, won't that not only divide Americans into two classes, but actually further injure economies that are so reliant on our own? My personal instincts say "bad idea"; however, I never worked on Wall Street and I've never really worked in finance so hopefully I'm wrong.

I do however feel this happened because of deregulation of business and banks (which I do blame the current administration for). Can I just ask why people voted for someone who ran every business he touched into the ground? Why would you think that was a good idea? Given, it's in the past now, but the climate is more serious than a heart attack. Please pay attention tonight, please listen and vote. I cannot stress how important this is. All of our dreams are riding on this one. If it doesn't pan out I'm going to have move to Canada!

Friday, October 3, 2008

Dabte? Are You Sure That's What I Watched Last Night?

I've been trying my best to bite my tongue when it comes to politics as I realize it still somewhat taboo…that said I can't stand any more! I've been following the debates and I was greatly anticipating last night's! I watched with a couple girlfriends, Chinese food and a bottle of Riesling. I think perhaps we should have made it a keg!

There were points where Palin was so off-topic we turned to each other and asked, "What the hell was the question?" Reading all the analyses from various political pundits I was completely awestruck. Were they watching the same debate I was? Yeah, Palin did a fabulous job in that she didn't mention how she can "...see Russia from her house."

A bigger issue might be that she DID NOT answer a question and redirected a majority of them. What's funny is that McCain stated the below in a response to the late Tim Russert (on Meet the Press, March 5th, 2000) when asked about joining the Bush ticket as VP:

"The vice president has two duties. One is to inquire daily as to the health of the president, and the other is to attend the funerals of Third World dictators. And neither of those do I find an enjoyable exercise.''

Needless to say to say I don't think McCain thinks highly of that office and it seems to me he picked Palin to strengthen the conservative base and entice the Hill voters. I find that pretty insulting. Because she has the same anatomy you think someone like me would vote for her? Are you nuts? Get it straight, Palin ain't half the woman Hillary is! She is in way over her head. I wish we could get McCain's health stats because President Palin could be a reality.

Besides the misuse of the word "maverick," definition below, Palin winked at the camera several times and made several other "blunders." So I developed a quick Palin to English translation:


O'Biden=Biden's Irish Cousin
Iraq=Where the bad people are
Afghanistan=a place with mountains
Nuc-ular=Bush's correct pronunciation of Nuclear
I'd like to go back to____= Crap…let me read my canned response here
Crap=Oh Ya Know
Maverick=A liar
Marriage=A forced arrangement between my pregnant daughter and her high school boyfriend

Definition of "maverick" provided by is below.

mav·er·ick (māv'ər-ĭk, māv'rĭk)
1. An unbranded range animal, especially a calf that has become separated from its mother, traditionally considered the property of the first person who brands it. This doesn't apply to McCain because he was never seperated from his Mother.
2. One that refuses to abide by the dictates of or resists adherence to a group; a dissenter. (FYI-McCain Voted with Bush 90% of the time...way to stray from the pack)

I can't even touch the foreign policy response from Palin…it's actually sticking to stomach like week old matzo so I'll have to come back to this.

The Previous Debate, While I'm At It:

McCain doesn't want the Federal government involved in health care? Riiiiiiiiiiight. So I suppose it's only "Women's Health Care" he feels the Fed has a right to be involved in. Interesting…

Off-shore drilling: what a fabulous idea because it's not as though we are up against serious environmental issues. Off shore drilling will allow Americans to see a price drop at the pump (please note bitter sarcasm). In order to drill, refine and impact the reserve/economy to the point where we see/feel a price drop we're looking at about 7 years. That will help me on the drive home for Thanksgiving. Thanks McPalin ticket! Golly gee, you're the best!!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Kate (an important personal re-post)

Previous Post About My Late Cousin Kate Elizabeth Svitek

I'm moving or rather restarting my blog. I wanted to move what I feel are my most important pieces. For more information please see Kate's Memorial Foundation