Friday, February 10, 2017


                                                           Click image to enlarge: 

Photo/Text © Rick Burnett Baker
All Rights Reserved

Saturday, July 2, 2016

15th Xerox Rochester International Jazz Festival

Today, July 2, 2016 is the last day of nine for this year's Xerox Rochester International Jazz Festival.  I took time over the past week to look for a few festival shots that were not the usual photos of the crowds and the bands.  Here is a compilation of several photos I took over the past nine days.

I only took in two shows this year, the first being a concert by Makoto Ozone and Tommy Smith, and the second a performance by Lizz Wright.  Both were wonderful performances.  Maybe next year I'll just get a Club Pass, take the week off, and enjoy as much music as I can fit into a day!

Photos © 2016 Rick B Baker 
All Rights Reserved

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Trump Is The Savior: The OR Factor

Graphic ©Senad

Trump Is The Savior

Donald Trump is a god-send to the Democrats.  He may also be the savior of the Republican party.  

Trump has zero chance of being elected president, his touted "honest" rhetoric and so-called double digit polling notwithstanding.  Just as likely, Bernie Sanders has zero chance of being elected president, his honest self-description as a "democratic socialist" notwithstanding.  But that's a story for another time. 

In a campaign field of some 16 of the most polarizing and self-defeating Republican candidates ever collected in one race, Trump outshines them all with his penchant for letting his mouth overload his ass. 

Donald Trump, in my opinion, isn't crazier than an outhouse rat the way I believe most of the other GOP candidates to be, but he runs a close race.  Despite being savvy enough to become a billionaire, he isn't a savvy communicator by any stretch of the imagination.  That provides two services to the thinking electorate:  One, it exposes the least intelligent portion of the electorate to public scrutiny, and provides the rest of us with a measure of the outhouse rat, or "OR" Factor as I call it. This OR Factor is my unscientific measure to describe candidates' craziness and/or stupidity,  as well as that of their supporting electorate.  It reduces the need to try and discern the intelligence and reasonableness of either. 

Second, it exposes completely, the utter lack of reason and/or measure of insanity and stupidity exhibited by the GOP candidates.  The OR Factor also exposes to voters in both parties who still have their intelligence and reason intact,  the number of outhouse rats who may actually vote for, and influence the election of other outhouse rats charged with representing and drafting potential legislation.  God help us all.     

Now before you left-leaning, liberal friends say that the second point isn't possible -  you know, having intelligent and reasonable Republicans within the ranks of the GOP, I implore you to draw upon your own mythological ideology of being the party of reason, tolerance, diversity, and inclusiveness.  I use the term 'mythological' to describe this fantasy of Democratic party members and liberals, because during a perfectly civil political discussion thread on Facebook a few years ago, I was  told by a rabid liberal Democrat to *@*#-off and die!"  She apparently couldn't fathom any form of civil, centric views.  So much for reason and tolerance.

The point is, those in the GOP who have survived the OR Factor will possibly be able to, in the coming years,  sweep away the ruins of madness, insanity, and stupidity within their ranks, at both national and local levels, and begin to rebuild a political party on a foundation of reason and intelligence.   

But let's be clear:  Those of you in the GOP who are survivors of the OR Factor are sure to be left in the shadows of election defeat and disappointment yet again in the coming election.  Pay attention now, and begin to plan for your reconstruction. 

As for you Democrats, Trump may very well assure your party of at least four more years in the Oval Office, despite fielding candidates with less than stellar records of political acumen and moral character.  His sound-bite stupidity may be the saving grace for whichever Democratic candidate, moral character aside, becomes the party's  candidate for president. 

So thank your lucky stars, Democrats and Republicans.  The OR Factor will be the saving grace for both your parties!

It will, however, be the short-term bane of intelligent voters across the land, wherever they may be hiding, and whatever their political affiliation may be. 

Rick B. Baker
July 22, 2015

© 2015 Rick Burnett Baker 
All Rights Reserved

Monday, July 13, 2015

The Texans Are Watching

Jade Helm 15: The Takeover Of Texan Minds

Should I be embarrassed to be a Native Texan?
When, and how did Texans become mad as hatters? I mean, really folks, you need to grab the edge and hang on tight!
And to think, these are the same people who will post "Support Our Troops" memes on social media, and snap your head off if you even remotely suggest that a military career is less than noble.
Here's the drill, my fellow Texans: CUT THE CRAP. You're all making "One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest" look like a Miss Manners' blueprint for sanity.
And the kicker? You wingnuts are being led by a former New Yorker. Go figure.
Oh, and one more thing. Keep your politicians AWAY from presidential politics. Washington has enough inbred mental degenerates as it is!

© 2015 Rick Burnett Baker 
Photo © 2015 Rick Burnett Baker 

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Bad Words, Butter, and Bullcrap

...And apparently, never too much bullcrap...

Bad Words, Butter, and Bullcrap

My opinion is, Matt Lauer is a pinhead and a prick.  (The latter not associated with the former.  Read the article here).

And anyone else who continues this crucifixion of sorts, of Paula Dean is a pinhead as well.  That's being gracious. 

Honestly, I've never watched Paula Dean's show and have no interest in watching it.  She's simply another made-for-TV celebrity who's 15 minutes have been extended to an hour.  From what little I've read about this non-issue, a former employee has seen an opportunity to bilk Dean's company out of a chunk of change, and so Dean's use of a racial slur in the past is in the open 'under oath.'  

Prosecuted for using derogatory language. 

Why, hell, that would put about 99.9% of the population behind bars!

As for this hoopla about her using the 'N' word, it's yet another example of media pandering to the utter stupidity of the American public, and serves as the latest diversion that keeps people from asking questions about real issues in the spotlight today.   You know, questions about the IRS, NSA, personal privacy and constitutional freedoms…you know, all THAT boring stuff. 

For all you namby-pambys who feel sanctified over this finger-pointing nonsense , I offer a challenge:  Make some noise about hip-hoppers and rappers  (I'd call them artists, but I'd be joking) glorifying and singing praises with the 'N' word in every sentence.  Make some noise about African-American stand-up comics saying, throughout their routines,  "….N****r  this, n****r  that…"   while the audience laughs.  Oh, the insensitivity of it all!

Otherwise, shut the you know what up! 

As for Pinhead Lauer, he might be a real big shot if he had the president face to face, and asked some questions about the above-mentioned issues surrounding the IRS, NSA personal privacy and constitutional know, all THAT boring stuff. 

If that happened, I'd bet the word 'ratings' would no longer be a bad word for NBC! 

Rick B. Baker 
June 26, 2013

© 2013 Rick Burnett Baker 

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Margaret Thatcher, 1925-2013

Image from Google Images

Finding Good In Thatcher's Leadership 
Not A Liberal Priority: 
Finding Good in Her Death? 

If the Rapepublicans and Tea Party conservatives are infuriating and mind-numbing, then the Dumbocrats and self-proclaimed liberals are similarly confusing and perplexing.  

I've ranted recently against the ultra-right wing "rapepublicans" and all the absolutely idiotic comments they seem to be predestined to constantly make (rape being one of their favorite topics), and now it's time for me to give a bitch-slap to the other side of the political spectrum.  

I'm commenting here about the varied reactions to the death of Margaret Thatcher.  Particularly liberal reactions here in the United States.

Let's be clear:  NO politician/leader is without fault.  But some are more fault worthy than others.  Hitler, Idi Amin, and Pol Pot immediately come to mind as being in the "more than" category. 

A number of people today seem to find it fashionable to lean left with this sad news of Thatcher's death, and play up and reference articles that literally described her as "evil."  

One article on the Guardian website was, as I commented to one person today, an interesting article.  You can read it here.  

It was, however, leftist in approach, yet cloaked with a false sense of 'objectivity.'  One statement I found quite agreeable was this one: 

"Former Tory MP Louise Mensch, with no apparent sense of irony, invoked precepts of propriety to announce:  'Pygmies of the left so predictably embarrassing yourselves, know this:  Not a one of your leaders will ever be globally mourned like her." 

How true.  

If you read the last paragraph of the article, I would say that I don't disagree with the writer.  I was put off, content notwithstanding, by the fact that it appeared on, namesake of one of the biggest (pun not intended) hypocrites on the planet.  But I digress…

Another comment was made by someone to a friend of mine that Thatcher  "…was friends with Pinochet, and yet thought Nelson Mandela was a terrorist…her moral compass was seriously skewed…"  

(This warrants a quick mention that even 'terrorists' can change, given Mandela's history as co-founder in 1961 of the militant Umkhonto we Sizwe group that espoused ideas of terrorism [and said as much] to achieve their goals. ) 

My response to the comment that Thatcher was 'friends' with Pinochet was this:  

"So were the US governments during that time.  Nations/leaders must pick and choose which dictators to support.  That's ugly, but it's an ugly truth. 

US presidents and leaders backed Egypt's Mubarak until  Barak and Hillary called for his ouster during the so-called Arab Spring.  That's worked out so very well for us and the rest of the world as political disasters continue to unfold there, moral compass aside. 

With all due respect, yours is a straw man argument.  I'm perplexed as to why so many presumably 'liberal' thinkers are so eager to discount many of the positive aspects of Thatcher's leadership.  

What I read and hear is that those who are presumed to be so thoughtful, inclusive, and tolerant are no more so than the 'evil' ones they proclaim as enemies." 

Finally, I just read another story from Reuters that was outlining this split between support-for-hatred-of  Margaret Thatcher.  This is one excerpt from that article:  

"Opponents celebrated in London, the English city of Bristol and the Scottish city of Glasgow, cheering her death and toasting to the death of "the witch" with champagne and cider.
"We've waited a long time for her death," said Carl Chamberlain, 45, unemployed, sporting a grey ponytail and sipping on a can of cider in Brixton…"

Really, left wingers?  Really, liberals?  Really Labour Party supporters?  Really, everyone?  

What's wrong with people?  What's wrong with the world?  

I believe that folks intent on bashing Thatcher should re-read history.   Then look at the state of affairs as they are today and tell me that being unemployed and drinking in a pub is the result of Thatcher, and not the subsequent 13 years of Labour Party policies.  

Bottoms up and cheers!     

Rick B. Baker 
Rochester, NY 
April 9, 2013 

© 2013 R. Burnett Baker 

Friday, January 18, 2013

Totalitarianism Just A GPS Away

Image borrowed from Google Images

GPS: Another Blow To Freedom

Exactly what type of action from government will make the majority of Americans sit up straight and actually listen, digest, and pull a Howard Beale, screaming at the top of their lungs, "I'm as mad as hell, and I'm not going to take this anymore"? 


This latest report is about states such as Vermont and Oregon (to name two) looking into taxing drivers for the miles they drive using GPS systems installed in vehicles. This would help offset "lost" revenue due to higher MPG ratings in vehicles, and the fewer miles being driven overall, thus reducing the number of gallons of gas sold each year to consumers.  Read the story here.

So we want to save money with better MPG vehicles, we want to help the environment in the process, we want to keep more of our hard earned dollars, and government officials think up new ways to rape, pillage and plunder the citizens of their respective states and these United States.  

Our hard earned dollars are getting harder and harder to earn, and keep. 

When will Americans get enough of this thievery?

In my opinion, all government officials, whether elected, appointed, or hired who make these kinds of recommendations should be hauled into court and charged with grand larceny and extortion. Upon conviction:  Life without parole.  

Anyone who thinks this mileage tax using GPS is a good idea is either a raging ultra-leftwingnut communist, a rabid ultra-rightwingnut fascist, or both!  

Seriously, people!  Get your heads out of each other's butts and start making noise about all of these seemingly insignificant measures that run out of our statehouses like salts through a widow woman.  

There is nothing insignificant about a new tax or fee here, or that new law or regulation there.  This is yet another link in the chain of bondage that pulls tighter around our freedom loving bodies every day, week, month and year.  

I would implore the citizens of Vermont to take a stand, but they are probably too enchanted with their socialist representative Bernie Sanders.  And the state of Oregon seems to be competing with California for Left Coast bragging rights.  

As for GPS, it is expected that most, if not all, vehicles built after 2015 will have the systems built in.  What a wonderful gizmo to increase highway revenue, as well as track your every movement and help eliminate privacy completely.  

GPS may very well be the one techno-gizmo that crosses the "T" in Totalitarianism.  

And the mute dummies in Vermont and Oregon are helping to make that happen!

I don't understand when or why Americans became so complacent that they will just sit around with their thumbs up their butts and allow this kind of thievery and enslavement to take place.  

Anyone have any answers? 

Or is everyone just into whips and chains these days? 

Turn off your GPS and WTFU! 

Rick B. Baker
Rochester, NY 
January 18, 2013 

©2012 R. Burnett Baker