Maine’s flags flying today, for statehood

March 15, 2019

U.S. flag flutters from the back of a boat on the Atlantic Ocean, in Maine. Photo from Peter Jon Lindberg.

Maine joined the union on March 15, 1820, the 23rd state. It was created out of what had been lands of the colony of Massachusetts.

Maine gave us a Vice President, Hannibal Hamlin, under Abraham Lincoln. In Hamlin’s term he disappeared from Washington, D.C. At some length, a story goes, Hamlin was tracked back to Maine where he had enlisted in the Civil War effort, cooking for the troops.

James G. Blaine, a newspaper editor, got the Republican nomination for the presidency in 1884. He lost the election to Grover Cleveland, but gave us that memorable phrase from the college U.S. history survey courses: “Blaine, Blaine, James G. Blaine! The Son of a Bitch from the State of Maine.”

Blaine was no slouch. He served 13 years in the U.S. House of Representatives, rising to the position of Speaker, served a term in the U.S. Senate and was twice U.S. Secretary of State, under three different presidents.

Despite its many natural wonders, Maine is one of four U.S. states I have not visited. (Where’s the invitation, Greg Marley?)

Lobster trap floats and Old, in Bar Harbor, Maine. Photo copyright by Greg A. Hartford,

Maine has a lot of people flying U.S. colors, judging from photographs. Good on them all. I wonder whether Mainers celebrate statehood, or just let it pass?

Maine manufactures U.S. flags. Bangor Daily News: “Sherry Jewel, a production supervisor for Maine Stitching Specialties, stitches together an American flag at the former Dirigo Stitching factory that was restarted two years ago.” 2016 story, photo by Bill Swain.


But it could always be worse: Maine Republicans trash classroom for teaching the Constitution

May 15, 2010

You couldn’t get fiction like this published.

Republicans in Maine voted to scrap the Republican platform and write a new one — not enough unholy discrimination in the old one, too much Eisenhower, too much Lincoln, or something like that.  The convention spilled out into a local middle school for some of the platform writing shenanigans.

In one 8th grade classroom, the Maine Republicans found something they objected to, something they don’t want taught to 8th graders:  The U.S. Constitution.

Pharyngula has the story and comments here.  ThinkProgress has more gory details here. Portland (Maine) Press-Herald story here. Bangor Daily News story here.

The Republicans were particularly incensed by a poster showing a collage used to open a project assigned to the Portland 8th graders.  The 8th graders make poster collages elaborating on the Four Freedoms speech of Franklin Roosevelt, and the accompanying posters by Norman Rockwell.  Norman Rockwell.  You know.  The guy who started his professional career as art director for the Boy Scouts of America . . .

“Brainwashing” the Republicans called U.S. history.  Brainwashing.

Speaking of the children, they got into the act Tuesday after a note from “a Republican” was found in Clifford’s classroom. “A Republican was here,” it read. “What gives you the right to propagandize impressionable kids?”

Responded eighth-grader Lilly O’Leary, one of several students who sent e-mails to this newspaper decrying the behavior of their weekend guests, “I am not being brainwashed in his class under any circumstances. I am being told that I have the right to my own opinion.”

She added, “These people were adults and they were acting very immaturely.”

Remember when Republicans used to complain that we can’t jail flag-burning protesters?  When did those guys get kicked out of the party, and who are these new thugs?

When did it become the Re-Poe-blican Party?  When did they take up the Blackshirt tactics?

C’mon, Republicans.  Come back to America.  Repent now.

And — as for us Texans?  This is the stuff Don McLeroy wants to see happen in Texas social studies standards — vandalism of the U.S. Constitution and American law and tradition.

As a Scouter, as a teacher, as a fan of the U.S. Constitution, I’m concerned.  Should I be scared?

“I saw nothing in the room — and nobody pointed out anything in the room — that appeared to give a more balanced view,” [Knox County Republican Party Chairman William] Chapman said.

[Teacher Paul] Clifford and the school’s principal, Mike McCarthy, pointed out in media accounts that the posters were part of projects on freedom and free expression. [Bangor Daily News]

Maybe everyone should be scared.


Hmmmmm.  Ken County, Maine, Republicans offer rewards to people who rat out others who vandalize campaign signs.  How about they extend that to rat out the Republicans who vandalized Paul Clifford’s classroom?  You know, in the interest of free speech and all . . .


Norman Rockwell, poster of his paintings on the Four Freedoms (Library of Congress image)

Norman Rockwell, poster of his paintings on the Four Freedoms (Library of Congress image). This is part of what the Maine Tea Party Republicans objected to.

Exercise your right to stand up for freedom and educationspread the word:

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Mushroom seminar in Brunswick, Maine – January 30

January 29, 2010

Biology covers vast fields, with experts in some areas able to spend entire lives without touching other areas of the science of living things.

Working on the effects of climate change, many different areas of biology need to be tapped to figure out what is going on, and what might happen.

Mushrooms, anyone?

Old friend Greg Marley, one of the very few I’d trust to identify edible wild ‘shrooms, presents a session on mushrooms in Maine, tomorrow.  Mushrooms had a tough go of it in Maine over the last season.  Why?  Marley may offer suggestions, you may have some data.

Mushrooms for Health, Greg Marley

Greg Marley is the author of Mushrooms for Health

In any case, if you’re in or near Brunswick, Maine, this is one of the better things you could do tomorrow; I hear from Marley:

The Maine Mycological Association is holding their second Winter Lecture this Saturday, Jan 30 In Brunswick.

Many people talk about the cold wet year that we just allowed to slip into history.  “Boy, it must have been a fantastic year for mushrooms!” they say.  Well, in reality it wasn’t.  We didn’t see many common species at all or in anything approaching normal numbers.  Other species were delayed or fruited in very different habitats that usual.  It was a very odd mushroom season.

Greg Marley will be leading a discussion and showing slides of mushrooms fruiting in 2009.  We will look at weather patterns and talk about out ideas on what happened and, more importantly, what we can learn from the year’s lessons.

Please come, bring your ideas and opinions along with your mushroom stories from 2009 and join the conversation!

Saturday, January 30.  9-11:30am
Free and open to all.
Curtis Memorial Library
Pleasant St
Brunswick, ME

Exit 28 from I-295 onto Route 1 (Pleasant St).  At the 3rd traffic light continue straight as Rt 1 bears left.   Curtis Library is 2.5 blocks down on the right, across from the Post office.

Imitation is the sincerest form . . . hey, wait a minute!

July 6, 2009

You need to go to the site to see the comparison.

A blog on design issues (among other things), the View from 32, has a neat interactive image that shows the campaign website for Les Otten, a Republican already campaigning for the governorship in Maine (election next year), compared to the website for Barack Obama.  You’ll notice more than a few similarities, including the “O” logo.

You don’t think . . . no Republican would copy . . . their politics must be completely different . . .

What the heck?  Obama won, right?  Who can argue with success?

You gotta see it to believe it.

From Fred2Blut

From Fred2Blue

Tip of the old scrub brush to Design Observer.

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