Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Archive for October 19th, 2006

Jerry Lewis takes care of investigation

leave a comment »

Face of corruption
I have previously mentioned Jerry Lewis, pictured above, the corrupt head of the House Appropriations Committee. He’s one of those GOP Congressmen who, like Denny Hastert, enrich themselves by buying land and then using earmarks to put Federal dollars to work to make the land more valuable, building a highway or interchange nearby. And, of course, such activities lead to investigations. But Rep Lewis (R-CA) has the answer:

My goodness. As TPMm readers know well, House Appropriations chairman Jerry Lewis (R-CA) is under federal investigation for possible improprieties in how he oversaw Congress’ spending of $900 billion annually. Yesterday, we reported that Lewis had dropped nearly $800,000 in legal fees to defend himself against the probe.
This evening, Congressional Quarterly reports (sub. req.) that in a round of calls Monday evening, Lewis fired 60 investigators who had worked for his committee rooting out fraud, waste, and abuse, effective immediately. As in, don’t bother coming in on Tuesday.

The investigators were contract workers, brought on to handle the extraordinary level of fraud investigations facing the panel. Sixteen permanent investigative staff are staying on, according to CQ. More:

Lewis’ decision “has in fact stalled all of the investigations on the staff,” said one of the contractors, a former FBI agent, who asked not to be identified. “This eviscerates the investigatory function. There is little if any ability to do any oversight now.” . . .“In effect, no investigative function is going to be done,” said the contractor, who called the decision “misguided.”

“This staff has saved billions and billions of dollars, we’ve turned up malfeasance and misfeasance,” the contractor said. “It’s results justify the expense of the staff. I have no idea why the chairman would do this.”

Lewis’ spokesman, John Scofield, told CQ that such complaints were “sour grapes,” and assured the publication that “there is nothing sinister going on.”

Nothing sinister? Nothing to see, move along? Or: how about a totally corrupt politician doing everything in his power to avoid being brought to justice? One whom the GOP is happy to re-elect.

I bet this doesn’t even make the TV news.

Written by LeisureGuy

19 October 2006 at 7:03 pm

Posted in Election, GOP, Government

Living well in a small space

leave a comment »

I just learned about Tiny-Living, a store in New York (125 East 7th Street; tel. 212-228-2748) that specializes in furniture and equipment particularly suited for small apartments—everything collapsible, foldable, stackable, and/or multifunctional. (The owners live in a 475-sq-ft apartment, which they say is ample.)

The Web site says that on-line store will open Summer 2006 (which ended 22 September), but I believe they are still in operation in their bricks-and-mortar store. So keep your eye on the space, those of you for whom space is a premium, and perhaps eventually we can see some useful items for sale.

UPDATE: On-line store should be open in a couple of weeks. I just called, and they said all is ready except for one technical issue that they’re working on. Also: the bricks-and-mortar store is open every day.

Written by LeisureGuy

19 October 2006 at 6:33 pm

Posted in Business, Daily life

Hopelessness in Iraq

leave a comment »

Constant Reader passed along this posting by Billmon:

Riverbend posted today for the first time since early August. As she explains: “Every time I felt the urge to write about Iraq, about the situation, I’d be filled with a certain hopelessness that can’t be put into words and that I suspect other Iraqis feel also.”

There is no way I can even begin to comprehend what it must feel like to be an Iraqi right now — much less an intelligent, educated, secular woman [i.e., Riverbend – LG] stuck in the middle of a slow-motion genocide. But I do know what a “certain hopelessness” feels like, or at least I think I do. It’s what I feel every time I think about how we came to this point.

Riverbend’s topic is the Lancet study on war deaths in Iraq, and she curtly eviscerates the conservative Holocaust deniers:

We literally do not know a single Iraqi family that has not seen the violent death of a first or second-degree relative these last three years. Abductions, militias, sectarian violence, revenge killings, assassinations, car-bombs, suicide bombers, American military strikes, Iraqi military raids, death squads, extremists, armed robberies, executions, detentions, secret prisons, torture, mysterious weapons — with so many different ways to die, is the number so far fetched?

Nor does she have any kind words for any of the rest of us here in God Bless America, whether on the left or the right, who posture and bloviate while her country dies a slow, agonizing death:

They write about and discuss Iraq as I might write about the Ivory Coast or Cambodia — with a detachment and lack of sentiment that, I suppose, is meant to be impartial. Hearing American politicians is even worse: They fall between idiots like Bush — constantly and totally in denial — and opportunists who want to use the war and ensuing chaos to promote themselves. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by LeisureGuy

19 October 2006 at 4:14 pm

Good idea to avoid voice-menu hell

leave a comment »

This excellent idea—ideas are now called “hacks” for some reason—comes from the Consumerist:

Great hack for getting to a telephone customer service rep quickly: fake that you speak Spanish.

Or rather, when they say, “Press 1 for English, para el español, marque dos,” — press 2.

When the agent comes on the line, just politely say you don’t speak Spanish and can they please help you in English.

For some reason, the waits are shorter for Spanish-speaking customers. Probably because fewer of them are calling in.

They’re always happy to do so, says tipster Dan. He says that it works no matter where he tries it.

¡Ole!

Written by LeisureGuy

19 October 2006 at 3:49 pm

Posted in Business, Daily life

One problem the Drug Czar has

with one comment

He too often lies. Here’s an example:

The Montana Meth Project, a large-scale ad campaign designed to scare teens away from using methamphetamine, received a certificate of recognition last week from U.S. Drug Czar John Walters. Walters praised the campaign as “a model for prevention efforts nationwide,” despite the fact that the campaign is ineffective.

The Montana Meth Project ads are often gruesome in depicting the dangers of methamphetamine use, showing users with rotten teeth and open sores. In one ad, a young woman is shown literally plucking out all her eyebrows while on meth. In another, a young woman says that even trying meth just once will lead to addiction and prostitution.

This bold approach has drawn substantial media attention as well as attention from policy makers. However, internal evaluations from the project show that perceived risks of using methamphetamine have actually dropped since the ads started airing.

The Montana Meth Project’s evaluation, which was released in April 2006, found that after the ads had been airing for six months, there was a statistically significant reduction in the amount of risk teens perceived to be associated with regular methamphetamine use.

Bill Piper, director of national affairs for the Drug Policy Alliance, said, “Once again, the Drug Czar is pushing feel-good projects that don’t work instead of honest information that is more effective at keeping young people safe.”

Scare tactic ads like the ones in the Montana Meth Project, whose slogan is, “Not even once,” have a proven history of failure. Exaggerated messages that contradict young people’s own perceptions and experiences are ignored by teens as lacking credibility. “Once teens think they are being lied to, they stop listening to all prevention messages,” Piper said. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by LeisureGuy

19 October 2006 at 2:30 pm

Posted in Drug laws

Apologies for all the political posts

with one comment

Normally I don’t do quite so high a proportion of political posts, but it is an election year and we’re in the final days before the election—and the GOP is simply imploding after years of corrupt control of government and indifference to the working families of this country, including those in the military. It’s very much pay-back time, and it’s a spectacle worth watching. It’s a long road that has no turning.

Written by LeisureGuy

19 October 2006 at 12:10 pm

GOP and vote suppression

leave a comment »

The GOP has always been big into vote suppression. Rather than face the voters, the GOP prefers to keep voters from the polls, if possible It’s happening again in California:

Approximately 14,000 Hispanic Democratic voters in Orange County, CA recently received a Spanish-language letter warning them to stay away from the polls:

Be advised that if your residence in the United States is illegal or if you are an immigrant, voting in a federal election is a crime that can result in incarceration, and possible deportation for voting without the right to do so. …

Not like in Mexico, here there is no benefit to voting. In the United States there is no registration card to vote. Therefore, it is useless and dangerous to vote in any election if you are not a citizen of the United States.

Do not pay attention to a politician who may try to tell you otherwise. They only care about their own interests.

This letter is a deceptive ploy to suppress Hispanic voter turn-out. Immigrants who are naturalized U.S. citizens can legally vote. The letter has now been traced back to the campaign of Tan D. Nguyen, a Republican challenger to Rep. Loretta Sanchez (D-CA).

Twenty-two organizations have written to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales requesting an investigation into the Orange County voter suppression. California Secretary of State Bruce McPherson has ordered an investigation into the mailing, which may have violated the Voting Rights Act. Read House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi’s (D-CA) statement HERE.

Written by LeisureGuy

19 October 2006 at 12:08 pm

Posted in Election, GOP, Government

Kerry and Bayh need to cough up some $

leave a comment »

From TPM:

If you’re wondering why the DSCC and Harry Reid are leaning on Kerry and Bayh in particular, this may be the answer.

So far Kerry has given the senate election committee $15,000 and Bayh $30,000.

Just for some random points of comparison Biden ($230,000), Feinstein ($1,106,800), Rockefeller ($325,000), Salazar ($116,000).

I know Kerry’s done a ton of campaigning for candidates around the country. I think he’s a great Democrat. But he’s sitting on a lot of money. And the DSCC could do a lot right now with money from these two.

DiFi did well.

UPDATE: Well, well. I emailed the John Kerry site to say that he should do more, and I got this response: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by LeisureGuy

19 October 2006 at 12:03 pm

Posted in Election, Government

CRCM files suit against public officials

leave a comment »

I’ve blogged earlier about those public officials who are illegally using taxpayer money to campaign against Prop 7. Now CRCM is taking action:

CRCM today filed an emergency Petition for Writ of Mandamus with the Eighth Judicial District Court in Las Vegas. We’re asking the court to issue an injunction to halt the use of tax dollars by public officials illegally campaigning against Question 7, the marijuana initiative on Nevada’s statewide ballot this November. A number of public officials in Nevada — including seven members of the Clark County Board of Commissioners, six member of the Nevada Board of Regents, Washoe County District Attorney Dick Gammick, and Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Lieutenant Stan Olsen — have used public resources to campaign against Question 7, despite the fact that the State Ethics Law prohibits them from using tax dollars to oppose any ballot questions. Additionally, other public official may still be considering opposition to Question 7, but a restraining order from the court can prevent them from doing so.

We hope that the public officials of Nevada, entrusted with carrying out our state laws, would always abide by them. The issue of a sensible marijuana policy for Nevada should be decided in a fair election by voters — not by the personal opinions of a few public officials.

Written by LeisureGuy

19 October 2006 at 11:58 am

Posted in Drug laws

Las Vegas Review-Journal endorses Prop 7

with one comment

Good endorsement:

Question 7 would allow adults to legally possess up to 1 ounce of marijuana. It would also increase penalties for driving under the influence of drugs and impose taxes and licensing regulations on marijuana retailers and wholesalers. Money raised by the taxes would fund state drug and alcohol rehabilitation programs. Opponents argue passionately that the initiative sends the wrong message to children. But arguing that in order to protect kids we must limit the rights of adults to make their own personal choices is to advocate the creation of an infantocracy and a return to alcohol Prohibition. In fact, many of this nation’s drug policies have long been expensive failures. Let’s try something new and allow law enforcement to redirect resources to more pressing priorities. Vote yes on Question 7.

Emphasis added.

Written by LeisureGuy

19 October 2006 at 11:53 am

Posted in Drug laws

Chances of NV Prop 7 passing

leave a comment »

A reader asks (in the comments), “What are the chances that Prop 7 will pass?”

I don’t have access to recent polls, but the last poll I saw had the “yes” side leading by about 7-8 points. And certainly the vocal support of the religious community will help.

My sense, from a distance, is that it stands a good chance of passing. The opposition arguments are generally weak: “Let’s continue doing what we have been doing” doesn’t sound very convincing, given that what we have been doing quite clearly is not working.

Moreover, even the emotional arguments fall short. I saw a video clip of a man speaking against the measure because his wife had been killed in an automobile accident by a driver who was stoned. That’s a horrible thing to happen, but as an argument against the legal and regulated sale of marijuana, it’s weak.

First, obviously, the accident happened when marijuana is illegal. So having marijuana illegal doesn’t prevent such accidents. Second, many people each year are killed by drunk drivers, so is this guy suggesting that alcohol should be made illegal? If not, why not?

Third, because marijuana is illegal, it is unregulated. If marijuana is (as Prop 7 would have it) sold in state stores, with an increase in penalties for selling to people underage and for using it in public or driving under the influence, it seems likely that more people who want to use marijuana will use it legally, and at home.

We’ll know in three weeks. But I would bet that Prop 7 passes. You can see the most recent TV commercial here.

Written by LeisureGuy

19 October 2006 at 10:59 am

Posted in Drug laws

Some campaign funds are moving

leave a comment »

Maybe your phone calls are working. This report shows that some money is moving:

Top Democrats are trying to convince two potential presidential candidates with flush campaign bank accounts to part with as much as $1 million each to finance the DSCC s late October effort to pull six Senate seats from Republican control. Sen. Evan Bayh’s 2008 re-election committee reported $10.6 million cash on hand through the end of 9/06. On Monday, following a conversation with Min. Leader Sen. Harry Reid, Bayh directed his donors to raise $K for the DSCC and intends deliver the checks by the beginning of next week.

’04 Dem nominee John Kerry (D-MA) has more than $8 million in his presidential campaign account. In 2004, Kerry contributed $1 million to help retire the DSCC’s. debt. Sen. Russ Feingold (D-WI), another presidential aspirant with low cash reserves has given $100,000 from his Senate account and $30,000 from his PAC, according to his spokesman, Trevor Miller. Sen. Chris Dodd (D-CT) has given $100K. Sen. Joe Biden (D-DE) has written a $50K check. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by LeisureGuy

19 October 2006 at 10:40 am

Posted in Election, Government

Yet another media failure: the WaPo

leave a comment »

Via Dan Froomkin, James Bovard in Editor & Publisher:

How will we know when a dictatorship has arrived? Not from reading the Washington Post. The Post’s story today — “Bush Signs Terrorism Measure” — looks like just another routine report on the approval of a piece of legislation, accompanied by the usual “he said/ she said” balancing quotes.

The Military Commissions Act is widely seen as legalizing torture, but the article avoids any such mention of the T-word. Though the act revolutionizes American jurisprudence by permitting the use of tortured confessions in judicial proceedings, the Post discretely notes only that defendants will face “restrictions on their ability to … exclude evidence gained through witness coercion.”

The lead of the Post article declares that the new law will “set the rules for the trials of key al-Qaeda members.” A typical subway strap hanger reader might shrug at this point and shift to the Sports section to read the latest autopsy on the Washington Redskins. The Post neglects to mention that the bill codifies the president’s power to label anyone on Earth an “enemy combatant” — based on secret evidence which the government need not disclose.

The Post mentions new “restrictions” on detainees’ ability “to challenge their incarceration.” The article neglects to add “until hell freezes over.” Sen. Arlen Specter (R-Pa.) characterized the bill’s suspension of habeas corpus as akin to turning “back the clock 800 years.” But, according to the Post, this reform is simply another provision in just another bill – and, anyhow, so many bills get signed this time of year.

The Post says nothing about how the new law makes the president legislator, prosecutor, judge, and bailiff. As Yale law professor Jack Balkin notes, “The President has created a new regime in which he is a law unto himself on issues of prisoner interrogations. He decides whether he has violated the laws, and he decides whether to prosecute the people he in turn urges to break the law.”

The tone of the Post article is akin to a bored broadcaster’s reading from the Teleprompter: “In other news today, the government announced that the price of gasoline would be reduced by seven cents a gallon and also suspended the Bill of Rights.” Read the rest of this entry »

Written by LeisureGuy

19 October 2006 at 10:15 am

Supporting the troops, GOP-style

leave a comment »

We already know that the troops serving in Iraq were given inadequate armor for their vehicles and themselves, and that the Pentagon lied when asked about it—and also did nothing to improve matters for months.

But now we see that the families of troops serving in Iraq have to stand in food lines:

The women and children who formed a line at Camp Pendleton last week could have been waiting for a child-care center to open or Disney on Ice tickets to go on sale.

Instead, they were waiting for day-old bread and frozen dinners packaged in slightly damaged boxes. These families are among a growing number of military households in San Diego County that regularly rely on donated food.

As the Iraq war marches toward its fourth anniversary, food lines operated by churches and other nonprofit groups are an increasingly valuable presence on military bases countywide. Leaders of the charitable groups say they’re scrambling to fill a need not seen since World War II.

Too often, the supplies run out before the lines do, said Regina Hunter, who coordinates food distribution at one Camp Pendleton site.

“Here they are defending the country. . . . It is heartbreaking to see,” said Hunter, manager of the on-base Abby Reinke Community Center. “If we could find more sources of food, we would open the program up to more people. We believe anyone who stands in a line for food needs it and deserves it.” Read the rest of this entry »

Written by LeisureGuy

19 October 2006 at 9:37 am

The press: watchdogs asleep

leave a comment »

I’m currently reading The Greatest Story Ever Sold, by Frank Rich, and I’ll be writing about it once I finish. But already it’s evident that the majority of reporters—and particularly those serving TV news—are lazy, incurious, pack-oriented incompetents. And here’s a bit of evidence:

From October 12-17, CNN aired 3,361 words about allegations that Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid (NV) improperly reported a land deal in which he made $700,000.

Seventeen different CNN transcripts in the Nexis database include mention of the Reid land deal — and that doesn’t even count October 18, when CNN has aired at least one more lengthy segment on the deal.

By comparison, CNN has aired only 65 words about a land deal in which House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert (R-IL) made nearly $2 million, a story which was first reported by the Chicago Sun-Times on June 15. By contrast, the Reid land deal first broke a week ago, when the Associated Press reported on October 11 that Reid had made $700,000 “on a Las Vegas land sale even though he hadn’t personally owned the property for three years.”

Hastert’s property appreciated in value after he earmarked taxpayer funding for a highway near the property — but only two CNN transcripts contain any mention of Hastert’s land deal, for a total word count that is one-fiftieth the number of words CNN has devoted to the Reid story. And 65 words is an extremely generous count — it includes a vague reference made in passing by Democratic strategist and pundit James Carville.

CNN has never — not once — told viewers the central allegation of the Hastert controversy: that Hastert profited after winning federal funding for a highway that increased the value of his property. As Media Matters for America has noted, that is a crucial difference between the Reid and Hastert controversies: Unlike Hastert, Reid is not alleged to have taken official government action that led to his profit. Yet CNN has devoted extensive coverage to the Reid deal, while virtually ignoring the far more serious allegations against Hastert.

  Hastert Reid
Highest-ranking member of the body in which he serves? Yes No
Member of party that controls every branch of federal government? Yes No
Profit on land deal $2,000,000 $700,000
Evidence he took official action that increased the value of his investment? Yes No
CNN transcripts mentioning controversy 2 17 (and counting)
Words CNN has broadcast about the controversy 65 3,361 (and counting)

Written by LeisureGuy

19 October 2006 at 9:23 am

Posted in Election, GOP, Government, Media

Who gets the most $ from lobbyists

leave a comment »

I blogged yesterday about how much San Diego likes Rep. Jerry Lewis, despite his sleazy reputation. Today, the LA Times has more:

When the list was finished, House Appropriations Committee Chairman Jerry Lewis (R-Redlands) came out on top, ahead of all his House peers. But this was one triumph no one in his office was celebrating.

Lewis, according to an analysis released Wednesday, got more campaign cash from lobbyists than any of his colleagues did.

The lawmaker is under federal scrutiny over his ties to lobbyists whose clients have received millions of dollars in earmarks from the appropriations committee. He has denied any impropriety.

Congress members’ relationships with lobbyists and special interests seeking favors in the form of earmarks have been at the center of a wave of scandals involving disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff, imprisoned former Rep. Randy “Duke” Cunningham (R-Rancho Santa Fe) and others.

Lewis’ No. 1 ranking was based on a study issued by Public Citizen, a Washington watchdog, of how much money special interests had given to members of Congress. The group advocates public financing of campaigns. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by LeisureGuy

19 October 2006 at 9:14 am

Posted in Election, GOP, Government

How much money can a candidate free?

leave a comment »

Some races this cycle are very tight. Some are not even real “races,” but a shoo-in. So, for the greater good of the party, those sitting on a lot of campaign cash and not needing it should be funneling to close contests. And you can make the call. From TalkingPointsMemo:

1. Go to OPENSECRETS.ORG. There’s a form right on the front of the page; enter your zip code and your representative pops up. Click on them and you get a summary page with their cash on hand, taken from the FEC filings.

2. Go to CQPOLITICS.COM/06map. Can you find yourself on a map? CQ will tell you whether your rep is in a real race.

If your rep is in a safe district and has a lot of cash, give a call to the campaign office (not the Congressional office—they are not allowed to talk about campaign issues) and ask him/her to help out those in closer races by giving at least some of that money to the DSCC or DCCC. This is an important election, and time is running out. Let’s work those phones!

Written by LeisureGuy

19 October 2006 at 9:02 am

Posted in Election, Government

The GOP: Party of Family Values

leave a comment »

Family values—so highly valued by the party of Foley, of Sherwood (admits having an affair, but denies his mistress’s statement that he tried to strangle her), of Henry Hyde (thankfully not running for re-election: had an affair that he said was a “youthful indiscretion” that started when he was 40 and went on for 5 years). And now this:

A single mother and a Nevada congressman running for governor gave vastly different accounts of a night of drinking that ended in three calls to 911, a police investigation and a battery complaint that was later withdrawn, police reports show.

Chrissy Mazzeo made three calls to 911 in which she told operators she had been assaulted by Rep. Jim Gibbons, according to investigative reports released by police Wednesday.

Mazzeo, 32, told police that Gibbons grabbed her arms and tried to force himself on her late Friday in a parking garage near a restaurant where she had been drinking with a friend, the congressman and his top adviser.

Gibbons, 61, a five-term Republican congressman who is running for governor against Democrat Dina Titus, told police the alleged assault “didn’t happen.” He said he walked Mazzeo toward her car and helped her catch her balance after she tripped.

“And if she assumed that helping her up … was detaining her, well then … I’m shocked at that,” according to a transcript of Gibbons’ Oct. 14 interview with police.

Both Gibbons and Mazzeo told police they had been drinking.

Mazzeo dropped the complaint the next day and told police she did not want to start a media circus. She did not recant the allegations or say she lied. She also told police she was not pressured to withdraw the complaint.

When asked about her change of mind, she said it was “because of who he is.”

“I just don’t want to go up against that,” Mazzeo said. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by LeisureGuy

19 October 2006 at 8:36 am

Posted in Election, GOP, Government

GOP keeping a convicted criminal in Congress

leave a comment »

Remember how Denny Hastert changed the rules so that Tom DeLay could continue as House Majority Leader even after he was indicted? There was so much outrage that the GOP backed down and changed the rule back—but at least they tried.

Now they are allowing a convicted criminal to continue his “service” in Congress:

Representative Bob Ney is headed to prison early next year after pleading guilty to charges of accepting tens of thousands of dollars in illegal gifts from lobbyists. Until then, Mr. Ney, a six-term Republican from Ohio, has a comfortable place to bide his time.

His Congressional office — the one that he has effectively acknowledged selling to the highest bidder — is open for business. [Presumably he is no longer taking bribes. – LG]
“The office of Congressman Bob Ney,” his telephone receptionist said in a cheery voice Tuesday morning, as if nothing had happened to her boss, the first member of Congress to confess to crimes involving the corrupt lobbyist Jack Abramoff. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by LeisureGuy

19 October 2006 at 8:29 am

Posted in Election, GOP, Government

An idea coming round again: barefoot hiking

leave a comment »

As pointed out in the note, barefoot hiking is not exactly a new idea: it’s the way everyone got around before the work “hiking” was invented. So why not try it again?

Most of the hikers who have ever lived have gone barefoot. Throughout history shoes have been expensive or unknown. Naked feet quickly adapt to stones, twigs, and cold. I’ve hiked alongside thousands of barefoot hikers, and there’s little terrain they can’t comfortably negotiate. However the forced-shoeless will immediately adopt a pair of flip-flop sandals for a bit of cushion if given a chance. So why would the well-heeled give up shoes on the trail? Barefoot hikers answer: “The soles of our feet function as wonderful sensory organs and the myriad of sensations from earth, grass, moss, pine-needles and other ground textures can both fascinate and delight. Barefoot Hikers appreciate their “vistas” of ground textures as much as others hikers enjoy their vistas of hills, mountains, forests and plains. Walking barefoot adds a rewarding tactile dimension to any outdoor hike.”

In short, hiking barefoot is a liberation and a sensual enjoyment — the very reasons why people who can drive hike in the first place. Once you get over the fact that, like natural childbirth, barefoot hiking is not only possible, but preferable, you’re halfway there.

Europe has more barefoot hikers than in the US, but one dedicated women recently hiked the entire rocky 2,000 miles of the Appalachian trail barefoot. Yet if we consider the indigenous tribes of old, she was probably not the first. (Then there’s running barefoot, another whole subject.)

There’s one book explaining barefoot hiking, a decent short how-to and why-to. It’ll go over objections and practical advice on getting your feet toughened up and so on. Tells you how to avoid stares by the disbelieving, which you will get. The book is also available as a free text on the web, courtesy of the author. (I find the printed book form ideal to hand out to others. ) Of course there’s plenty of websites for enthusiasts.

Because this ability is so primeval, no information is really needed. About all you need to know is that it is easy, natural and fun. Your feet will take it from there.

— KK

barefoot2.png

The Barefoot Hiker, by Richard Keith Frazine; 1993, 98 pages; $8
Available from Amazon and (at no cost) from this site.

Written by LeisureGuy

19 October 2006 at 8:18 am

Posted in Books, Daily life

<span>%d</span> bloggers like this: