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Why can international airline businesses build multi-million dollar jets capable of flying 450 people safely to the other side of the world but cannot install in Inter-Com that works?

In the last few hours on two huge jets, Delta and Cyprus Air, I never understood a word the pilot said over the com line and I missed much of what the flight attendants said on one of the jets. I also experienced this the past three weekends on trips to KS, PA, and OR. What gives?

If safety is a factor in what the pilot or flight attendant is saying, than we are not safe because we can’t hear at all, the sound is muffled, or it squawks. If customer service is the issue than we aren’t well served because we weren’t able to learn anything.

I mean, really, I’m not making this up. I experience this regularly. Sometimes it is so bad you hear nothing more than a whisper of static. Don’t maintenance people check com lines? Don’t flight attendants report they can’t hear and, if so, presumably the guy in 27B can’t hear either?

And if your company made and installed these communications devices wouldn’t you want to make them top of the line?

Well, what can I say other than to lodge a viewpoint? It would be laughable it if weren’t more important than an annoyance.

My recommendation? Fix the communications systems before “We have a problem, Houston” becomes more than a cliché.


© Rex M. Rogers – All Rights Reserved, 2012 *This blog may be reproduced in whole or in part with a full attribution statement. Contact Rex or read more commentary on current issues and events at or follow him at

Litter has bugged me for as long as I can remember. There’s something about trash strewn across God’s handiwork that grates on the eye, mind, and soul.

I’m strong on this but I don’t think goofy. If your cast-off stuff is truly biodegradable than I don’t get too worked up. Although even these kinds of products, depending upon where they are discarded, can harm the local ecosystem; that’s why it’s illegal, or should be, to jettison untreated effluvium from your boat’s tanks into inland or coastal waters.

Littering is, in my estimation, an act of disrespect, immaturity, and irresponsibility. To me, this seems like common sense. Here’re some more thoughts on the matter:


© Rex M. Rogers – All Rights Reserved, 2012

This blog may be reproduced in whole or in part with a full attribution statement. Contact Rex or read more commentary on current issues and events at or follow him at

Men and women have worked together since Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. Thing is, though, with them--they were husband and wife.

To state the obvious: most people at work are not married. So what do proper relationships between men and women in the workplace look like for those who are not married? By "proper relationships," I mean moral, professional, and appropriately friendly and productive relationships.

In the past thirty years or so "gender relations" has become a much bigger concern for businesses and organizations. In some ways we've become more aware. We've finally awakened to some serious problems and begun to try to correct them for the benefit of everyone but usually especially for women. In other ways we've become hyper-sensitive to the point where some "fixes" seem worse than the problem. For corporations, gender relations in the workplace has become so much policy. But who can write a policy for every eventuality?

Shouldn't adult professionals police themselves on such common sense matters? Well, yes they should, but some men and women are not mature, some are naughty, and some are downright nasty. All this means the corporation, to protect itself from legal liability and to protect its employees from unwanted and harmful interactions with the opposite (or maybe the same) gender have had to develop H.R. policies.

Then there's the issue of what used to be acceptable--maybe, for example, truly innocent friendly hugging--isn't wanted or isn't always acceptable any more.

During my days as a university administrator our institution and other similar ones had to address gender issues, including appropriate interaction. Out of those experiences I wrote this recently published article: "Men and Women In The Workplace." It's not the last word, not even my last word, on the subject. But it does address some basic concerns, share what I learned, and make some recommendations.

One thing's for sure, the question of appropriate male/female interaction in the workplace is never going to go away.


© Rex M. Rogers – All Rights Reserved, 2012

*This blog may be reproduced in whole or in part with a full attribution statement. Contact Rex or read more commentary on current issues and events at or follow him at

Americans still think they can get away with it. They still think they, unlike all civilizations that have gone before, can somehow take gambling into their bosom and not get burned. Not going to happen.

Since 1988 with the enactment of the Federal Indian Gaming Regulatory Act, Americans have chased bad bets like the most obsessive of problem gamblers. We can’t get enough of it even though it drains local economies, sends families into bankruptcy, feeds graft, greed, and corruption, and results in higher costs for local governments responding to the social pathologies gambling encourages.

Gambling is as bad a bet as it’s ever been. No one ultimately wins in a casino except the House, the owners. And now the owners are in trouble.

A number of casino companies are wrestling with debt like so many cities and states, not to mention the Federal government. Bad times have combined with bad investments (bad bets?) to produce bad debt for casino owners. The casinos expanded when they should have contracted. They “let it ride” when they should have pulled in their money and gone home.

Let’s hope more than a few of these centers of debt-production go under from a taste of their own medicine.


© Rex M. Rogers – All Rights Reserved, 2012

*This blog may be reproduced in whole or in part with a full attribution statement. Contact Rex or read more commentary on current issues and events at or follow him at

An American soldier allegedly killed 16 Afghan citizens, including 11 women and children, in an unprovoked act of murder. The slaughter—What else can it be called?—took place a short distance from an American base.

Afghans from President Hamid Karzai to local citizens to members of the Taliban are understandably incensed by this brutality. The increased tension and potential for violent response has put all troop contingents on alert and calls into question once again, Why are American troops still in Afghanistan?

But my interest here is not whether American armed forces should be withdrawn expeditiously from Afghanistan (they should as I’ve said before). My question is: Should capital punishment be employed if the actual perpetrator is given due process, legally tried, and found guilty?

Capital punishment, taking a life for a life, has been employed by virtually every civilization since creation. In the modern era some countries have ceased implementing capital punishment even for the most heinous crimes because these countries have concluded the state should never take life. Yet, of course, it is interesting to note that many of these countries have also legalized abortion. Some have experimented with euthanasia. But again, those are issues for another day.

From 1942 to 1961, some 160 American soldiers were executed for murder, rape, and other infractions of the Uniformed Code of Military Justice. They were executed because these American soldiers’ actions took human life, assaulted law and order, or undermined authority among troops at war and the moral momentum of the cause. Without such justice, most believed at that time, more soldiers would be put at risk.

Since 1961, no American armed forces personnel have been given the death penalty. In 1984, President Ronald Reagan reintroduced the death penalty in the military, and in 2008 President George W. Bush approved the death penalty for a soldier convicted of multiple rapes and murder. To date this soldier has not been executed.

I think the same concerns should be considered in Afghanistan in this case. I believe the perpetrator of this latest crime should be given the death penalty.

Lest I be misunderstood, I am not arguing for capital punishment as the result of a summary judgment, kangaroo court, lack of evidence, due process, or conviction, or as a political statement.

I am supporting capital punishment in the case of the latest incident of mass murder in Afghanistan if the accused Staff Sargeant is duly and properly convicted in a military court of law. I argue for this not because it necessarily becomes a deterrent to future crime, although it may. Not because this action may assuage understandable angry emotions among Afghanis, although it may. I argue for capital punishment because this form of sin and crime is like no other and it demands a just response.

The scriptural basis for this view is Genesis 9:6: “Whoever sheds human blood, by humans shall their blood be shed; for in the image of God has God made mankind.”

Taking human life in revenge is not the province of individuals. Taking human life as a form of justice is the province of government, in this case the United States Military. The death penalty is extreme, but so are the limited number of crimes that demand it.


© Rex M. Rogers – All Rights Reserved, 2012

*This blog may be reproduced in whole or in part with a full attribution statement. Contact Rex or read more commentary on current issues and events at or follow him at

I’ve always loved the outdoors. I’m reminded of that as I visit southern Oregon this weekend. Driving in I could see snow-covered volcanic cone Mt McLoughlin, or as the old-timers call it, Mt Pitt. In the other direction, there’s Table Rock, a high and long, chiseled mesa that once served as a home and refuge for the Takelma Indians. Beautiful.

My hotel room balcony is just feet from rapids in the Rogue River, full and playing soothing music on its way to the Pacific. Also from the balcony, I see enormous pines and thousands of lichen-laden short oak trees.

This brings back memories from my time as a kid in Ohio. We didn’t have Rocky Mountains. We had the rolling foothills of the Appalachians, equally stirring in their own way. We had fields and woods, hollows and lakes, and we had farmland. I spent hours in all of them and here I developed a love for nature, the outdoors, and wildlife that’s lasted a lifetime.

My favorite color is green because it was, in my kid’s view, the most natural of colors.

The early American frontiersmen like Daniel Boone and their Native American counterparts like Tecumseh were my heroes.

I learned caught, kept, and tended tadpoles and all manner of bugs. Whenever I could in the fields or woods I froze into stillness and watched animals and birds live without human interference. I learned their names, sounds, and habits, as I learned the names of plants and especially trees.

This need to observe flora and fauna remains with me, for I still find it exciting to see something different, maybe a fox, an egret in Florida, or prairie dogs in Nebraska. I still find it exciting to see a bird or animal or tree I’ve never seen before. I remember the first time I saw a roadrunner in Arizona and a magpie in California.

Hearing birds sing in the early morning is my favorite music. Their distinctive and varying harmonies are unmatched.

In the 8th Grade another student and friend, Dave Hammond, and I built an extensive Conservation display for the school’s science fair. I don’t remember the award we received. I do remember getting our picture in the paper. Though I would not today call myself an environmentalist, a term fraught with problematic politics, I am certainly concerned for the stewardship of all creation. “Extinction” is an awful word, and “despoiled” is almost as bad.

As a kid I never felt freer, more alive and optimistic, than when I was alone in the fields or woods. Not because I had a poor family life, because I was blessed with the opposite. But because I felt connected with a kind of beauty, purity, and simplicity that could not be found even in village life, let alone amongst urban congestion.

The Great Outdoors is great because it’s nothing less than divine art. I loved it all from the moment I could walk in nature’s cathedrals. I am part of it. I am responsible for it. I love it still.


© Rex M. Rogers – All Rights Reserved, 2012

*This blog may be reproduced in whole or in part with a full attribution statement. Contact Rex or read more commentary on current issues and events at or follow him at