4 W’s, from coast to almost coast

The 2006 Olin International Reunion was in Kennewick, WA

stamps texas to wyoming
WA Washington, a US state in the Northwest, historically abbreviated Wash. It’s often referred to a Washington state, to delineate it from the national capital on the other side of the country. Capital: Olympia. Largest city: Seattle.

The 2006 Olin International Reunion was in August in Kennewick, the eastern part of the state. My wife and I briefly considered going, but with a two-year-old, who wailed on an hour-long car ride, we decided a transcontinental flight at that time was not in our plans.

WI Wisconsin, a state in the Midwest US, historically abbreviated Wisc. Capital: Madison. Largest city: Milwaukee, a city I associate with beer. The TV sitcom show Laverne & Shirley was based there.

The major sports franchise in the smallest city metropolis is the Green Bay Packers, which won the first two Super Bowl NFL championship games.

The one time I was in Wisconsin was 1988. I was working for FantaCo, the comic book store/publisher. I was accompanying Mario Bruni to the Capital City Distributors trade show in Madison. We were there to promote some Mars Attacks cards which Mario had designed and FantaCo was publishing. This was in a period before Diamond had become the only player in the comic book direct market.

Madison was a beautiful city, located on a couple of lakes. It seemed like a place I could live if ever I were to move.

Mountain State

WV West Virginia, a state in the Appalachian region of the southern US, sometimes abbreviated W. Va. Capital and largest city: Charleston.

I always had an odd affection for the state, which broke off from Virginia during the Civil War, and joined the Union in 1863. As a kid in Binghamton, I could pick up the country music powerhouse WWVA in Wheeling, West Virginia late at night. The station apparently abandoned the format in favor of talk radio in 1997.

When my family used to drive from Albany, NY to Charlotte, NC, where my parents lived, we’d almost always stay in Martinsburg, West Virginia, which was about halfway. We had been there enough times to identify the restaurants and hotels, practically from memory.

WY Wyoming, a state in the US Rocky Mountains, sometimes abbreviated Wyo. Capital and largest city: Cheyenne.

Although the state is the 10th largest by area, it is the least populous state in the country, with fewer than 600,000 people. It’s also the second most sparsely populated state, behind Alaska.

Thus ends our run of the 50 US states, and related geographies.

The who, what, when, where, why of ABC Wednesday

Scott Walker, Gray Davis: The Recall Question

Let me tell you a secret: I was not happy about the Wisconsin recall vote that attempted, unsuccessfully, to get rid of Governor Scott Walker. I’m not referring to the OUTCOME of the vote; I’m talking about having the vote in the first place. Walker was duly elected in 2010 for a four-year term and started fulfilling his campaign pledge to make draconian cuts to the budget and state personnel. Just a year into his term, a movement to unseat him began.

It reminded me of the California recall of Governor Gray Davis (pictured) in 2003, mere months after he was re-elected in 2002, tied to an electricity price crisis manipulated in part by the failed business, Enron. Davis was replaced by some actor from Austria.

It is said that the idea of recall is “pure democracy”, with the people able to right wrongs. Then why does it feel so undemocratic to me?

There has been a lot of talk about what the Wisconsin vote MEANS. It may not MEAN anything. “Folks were polled at 60 percent voting against this recall because they think leadership change ought to occur via regular elections and not recalls and that a majority of those polled voted against recall while still expressing supports for unions.”

It seems to me that one should limit the recall to an official who has committed a grievous crime or betrayed the office in some way. New York, which not have the recall option, managed to get rid of its governor, Eliot Spitzer, through threats of legal action after his prostitution addiction came to light.

And the propositions that are allowed on the ballot in California seem to contradict each other every other year, making it an even more difficult state to govern.

The Wisconsin situation does show, yet again, how much money controls politics more than ever before, and that is most unhealthy for democracy, as the person in this video suggests.

But what say you?


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