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Member since: Tue Dec 29, 2015, 02:16 PM
Number of posts: 17,248

Journal Archives

Sully the Service Dog (HW Bush's former) Just Got A New Job

As you may have known, now-passed former President George HW Bush had a service dog named Sully HW Bush.

Sully started working with George HW Bush during the summer of 2018, shortly after the former president’s 94th birthday. Sully was trained by America’s VetDogs, and was said to be a perfect match for HW Bush because he was an “old soul.” The two stayed together until the former president died at the end of November 2018.

Sully had always been a popular dog, but what really put him on the map was this viral picture of him lying in front of his former human’s casket:

But while his new job will certainly incorporate all those skills, it’s a little more specific.

Last Wednesday, Sully took his oath of office to become a member of the dog program at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, taking the following pledge:

“Do you affirm or pant as a hospital corpsman in the United States Navy that you will support, comfort and cheer warriors and their families, active duty and retired? That you embrace our staff and bear unconditional love and solace, especially on busy days? That you take this obligation freely, without any promise of treats or tummy rubs and that you will faithfully discharge the duties to provide joy, love and nurturing for our soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines, and sailors and their families?”

Sully gave a paw-shake as an enthusiastic, affirmative response!


Update on Joe Cuba, who wanted 100 birthday cards for his 100th birthday


A soon-to-be centenarian in the Lone Star State has been overwhelmed by the response to his social media plea for some recognition for his big birthday on Saturday. Joe Cuba, currently 99, had one big ask for his 100th birthday on Mar. 2: He wanted a birthday card for every year of life he’d lived so far.

Stephanie Veitenheimer, a sales manager at Brookdale Senior Living, appears to be the originator of the request, posting it to her personal social media accounts on Feb. 19 and receiving thousands of shares. Cuba’s birthday wish appears to have first been picked up by media on the evening of Feb. 20, when it was featured on local NBC affiliate KFDX3. The ask was then further supported by the Wichita Falls residential care facility on its branded social media the following morning.

What happened next might not seem surprising to those with extensive social media exposure or experience, but it certainly surprised the man now affectionately known as “GI Joe.”

He went viral. Like, REALLY viral. As of Wednesday, Brookdale’s executive director, Jarvis Polvado, reports that Cuba, born in Texas to Czech immigrants in 1919, has received over 16,000 cards and gifts.

I know a number of DU'ers sent cards. Lots more pics at link.

Pete Souza's Best Photograph: Obama Shows How You Talk to a Dictator.


“I wasn’t supposed to be here for this picture. It was taken on the 70th anniversary of the Normandy landings – all the heads of state had gathered there and were coming out of an impromptu luncheon. The official photographers from each country had been kicked out – we were all supposed to leave the building. But I have a knack of making myself small and sticking around.

The shot shows the kind of interaction President Obama had with President Putin during his tenure. It was 2014, a particularly tense time between the two countries. You can see in the facial expressions and gestures that this was a very serious conversation. There are interpreters stood behind them, but I get the impression from Putin’s face that he understood exactly what was being said in English.

I was within earshot. I can’t recount specifically what they said, but I knew the subject matter. Can I say what it was? It was about … some of Russia’s actions in the world. Let’s leave it at that.

This conversation went on for a while: they weren’t thinking about me. To them, I was just one of many people in the room, coming and going in different directions. I started out shooting horizontally and tighter, and then switched to vertical, backing up to show their entire bodies. Compositionally, that seemed to show the body language better.”

Compare and contrast:


Emergency surgery for retired Military Working Dog

Yesterday Project K-9 Hero was contacted to help with an emergency surgery for retired Military Working Dog Ferro. MWD Ferro needed immediate surgery for a blockage that was causing him severe medical issues. His owner and handler, Conner Sullivan, who is an active duty U.S. Army Military Police K-9 Handler, contacted us in desperate need of assistance.

Conner had maxed out his credit cards for the ER visits, x rays, and ultrasounds trying to figure out what was wrong with his retired hero. When it came time for surgery there was simply no funds left for him to be able to pay for it. Within hours of hearing Conner’s and MWD Ferro’s story, we at www.projectk9hero.org approved to pay for this emergency surgery at 100%.

During the surgery, a sock was located inside of MWD Ferro, which was causing all of his medical problems. Project K-9 Hero paid the medical bill of $1,783.81 at 100% for this active duty soldier.

MWD Ferro is a 9 year old German Shepherd, Dual Purpose Patrol/Explosive Dog, who served his entire career with the 903rd U.S. Army MWD Detachment in South Korea.


Highly intelligent dog eats a sock. Happy ending!

Uber-wealthy 'Sidewalk Sally' assaults family in park over one-year old sitting on sidewalk

"I guess i should be numb to this by now, yet this one tears into me. Jumping out of your Jag to yell about a baby sitting on the effing sidewalk is apparently a thing now.

Kelyn and Isaiah Allen tried to take a few photos in a popular Houston park to commemorate their daughter’s first birthday. Instead, the mother was forced to take video of a crying one-year old who had to witness her father getting struck by a “socialite” who lost it—because the baby was “obstructing the sidewalk.”

If you are a normal person who sees someone doing a photoshoot on a sidewalk, you would likely walk around them and leave them in peace.

If you are Franci Neely, the divorced wife of the Houston Astros owner, who got tens of millions in the divorce settlement, you feel entitled and can’t even drive down the street and allow a baby to have a few pictures on her birthday in peace.

As you can see on the video, she physically drags the props away and strikes the father.


Sorry, I couldn't get rid of the Twitter comments. I'm wondering why this woman is barefoot....

Trump's Secret to Victory in 2020: Hispanic Voters

Yes, it’s true: The man who wants to build a wall to keep out immigrants is winning over just enough Latinos to get re-elected. Unless Democrats figure out how to stop him.

When President Donald Trump tweeted, on January 20, that he had reached 50 percent approval among Hispanic Americans, most fair-minded observers reacted with skepticism, if not outright disbelief. Trump was, after all, still the same man who announced his candidacy by accusing Mexico of sending “rapists” across the border, the same man who ordered refugee children separated from their parents, the same man who has made building a wall to shut out migrants the focal point of his presidency. Yet here he was, crowing characteristic bravado: “Wow, just heard that my poll numbers with Hispanics has gone up 19%, to 50%. That is because they know the Border issue better than anyone, and they want Security, which can only be gotten with a Wall.”

So, when even the pollsters responsible for the data Trump was touting—Marist Institute for Public Polling, for NPR and PBS NewsHour—cautioned of the high margin of error for that subset, and a possible over-sampling of Republicans, many on the left promptly dismissed it as an anomaly.

One month later, however, and Trump is making an aggressive play for Hispanic-American votes in Florida and beyond. Meanwhile, new polls suggest Marist might have been onto something—and that Democrats should be genuinely worried that Hispanic voters could help re-elect Trump and keep the U.S. Senate in Republican control. If so, it will be a cosmic twist of fate: A party that has staked its future on a belief that America’s demographic picture is changing decidedly in its favor could find itself losing to a man whose politics of fear should be driving precisely those voters into the Democrats’ waiting arms.


We better get on top of this.

PUPPERS Act to End 'Barbaric' VA Dog Experiments Reintroduced to Congress

Many people—including Democrats and Republicans in Congress and plenty of veterans themselves—oppose the horrific, taxpayer-funded experiments that some Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) facilities perform on dogs.

How terrible are these experiments? Dogs have undergone surgeries that forced them to have heart attacks or vomit repeatedly. Portions of their brains have been removed to test the neurons that control their breathing. After enduring this torture, the dogs are euthanized.

To put a much-needed end to this cruelty, Rep. Dave Brat, a Republican, and Rep. Dina Titus, a Democrat, introduced the bipartisan Preventing Unkind and Painful Procedures and Experiments on Respected Species (PUPPERS) Act in Congress two years ago.

The PUPPERS Act would prohibit the VA from purchasing, breeding, transporting, housing, feeding, maintaining, disposing of or experimenting on dogs for any study that causes significant pain or distress. The House unanimously passed the 2017 bill, but then it stalled in the Senate, thanks in large part to the VA’s efforts to kill it.


Dixie Chicks......Not ready to make nice

This song came from lead Natalie Maines' President Bush criticism. Seems appropriate today too.

6 Orangutans Make Epic Journey Back to Freedom

Following years of rehabilitation, six lucky orangutans are finally starting their new lives after being returned to their rightful home in the Bornean rainforest.

According to International Animal Rescue (IAR), which cared for them at its orangutan rescue center, this release is especially epic because there was a mother in the group who was the first to have been released with a baby, and it’s the first time a baby has been released with a foster mom.


Now, after years of intensive care, this group has finally returned to their forest home. After a 17-hour journey, that was assisted by members of a local village, they were released in the Bukit Baka Bukit Raya National Park (TNBBBR), which was chosen because it’s the perfect habitat for them with plenty of food, as a national park it offers protection, and previous surveys had found no other orangutans there.


Finally! A good story.

103-year-old woman sworn in as junior ranger at Grand Canyon

Rose Torphy, who is three years older than the Grand Canyon National Park itself, has become a junior ranger at the spry age of 103. And she has the certificate to prove it.

How did this go down? Torphy was at the Grand Canyon for only the second time in her life when she happened to stop in to the park’s store. "I started talking to people about the junior ranger program because it teaches kids to protect the Canyon," she explained to Good Morning America in an interview. "My parents taught me to care for the land but not all kids have that."

The junior ranger program is a form of educational programming. Potential junior rangers complete an activity book about the national park and are taught new information by store staff. Junior rangers promise to protect the Grand Canyon before they officially become park stewards. (And receive their certificates!)

Speaking to Good Morning America, Alysa Ojeda, marketing and public relations manager for the Grand Canyon Conservancy, noted that they had to "get creative" with programming this January, due to Trump’s partial government shutdown. (The Grand Canyon Conservancy funds the junior ranger program.)

Torphy, who is a mom of three, grandmother of nine, great-grandmother of 18, and great-great grandmother of 10, said, “I'm so happy that someone is watching over it so that my great-great-grandchildren can visit it someday too.”

The world is in a shambles, but Torphy is certainly a bright light in the darkness.

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