Tom Dwyer Automotive http://tomdwyer.com Portland's Best Auto Repair - Now Servicing 1998+ Vehicles Fri, 14 Aug 2015 14:54:06 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.4 Comparing apples and oranges http://tomdwyer.com/2015/newsletters/comparing-apples-and-oranges/ http://tomdwyer.com/2015/newsletters/comparing-apples-and-oranges/#comments Mon, 10 Aug 2015 21:35:55 +0000 http://tomdwyer.com/?p=18571 Greetings! We’re still 16 months out from the Presidential election, but it sure didn’t look like it last week.  There’s no shortage of things to talk about concerning the Republican debates, but I was more struck by the contrast between … Continue reading

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We’re still 16 months out from the Presidential election, but it sure didn’t look like it last week.  There’s no shortage of things to talk about concerning the Republican debates, but I was more struck by the contrast between the primary candidates on the Democratic side.  Put the specifics of policy aside and just look at Hillary’s and Bernie’s approach to fundraising… who better represents the political process you want to see?

Scenario 1-  Hillary squeezed Portland in between similar events at the homes of supporters in Park City, UT, and Atherton, CA.  She hit the ground on Wednesday and headed for the home of Win McCormack and Carol Butler, described as “democratic insiders” who had supported Obama and worked for Wyden and Bonamici.  140 people were expected to attend “Conversation with Hillary”, a two-hour, invitation-only event that cost $2700 per ticket.  None of these 140 people were reporters, who were sequestered at another home in the Dunthorpe neighborhood during the event.

Scenario 2-  Bernie squeezed Portland in after a similar event in Seattle that drew 15,000 people.   He was scheduled for the 12,800-seat Memorial Coliseum, but changed to the 20,000-seat Moda Center days before the event when it became apparent that Memorial Coliseum would be swamped.  In the end even Moda couldn’t contain the crowd; 8000 people gathered in overflow areas outside for a total of 28,000 at the event.  Reporters’ coverage is still focused on the size and enthusiasm of the crowd, but they were able to report some policy points because they were actually allowed inside to listen.

Again, let’s keep policy out of the picture.  The gulf between Republicans and Democrats may be vast, but the gulf between Hillary’s and Bernie’s fundraising styles is even larger and more fundamental.  It’s the difference between a government run by insiders who purport to know what’s best for us, and a government run by the people and in our interests.

Openness, transparency, accountability, responsiveness… these are qualities Americans have always valued in government, and I believe our disillusionment today stems from the fact that they’re qualities now only given lip service, when the politician in question isn’t too embarrassed to mention them.  Last week this gap was on display on just the Democratic side, but wait until the general election gets closer.  We’ll be lucky if we still have an example of a politician, any politician, going to the common people for their money.

But when that general election does arrive, ask yourself the question we should all be asking every day… how should government be run?  I hope there’ll be someone to vote for that represents the right answer to that question.

Take Care and Make a Great Day!

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Remembering Hiroshima http://tomdwyer.com/2015/newsletters/remembering-hiroshima-2/ http://tomdwyer.com/2015/newsletters/remembering-hiroshima-2/#comments Mon, 10 Aug 2015 21:35:31 +0000 http://tomdwyer.com/?p=18573 70 years since the world changed forever 70 years ago, America became the first and, so far, only country to use nuclear weapons in war.  On August 6, 1945, the Enola Gay dropped a bomb on Hiroshima that exploded with … Continue reading

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Feature-Hiroshima70 years since the world changed forever

70 years ago, America became the first and, so far, only country to use nuclear weapons in war.  On August 6, 1945, the Enola Gay dropped a bomb on Hiroshima that exploded with a force of 15,000 tons (15Kt) of TNT, and on August 9 the Bockscar dropped a 20Kt bomb on Nagasaki.  Combined injured and dead in both cities totaled almost 200,000, and the Japanese government announced its surrender on August 15.  WWII had ended, and the Cold War was about to begin.  Ethical debates about the bombings continue today, but before we can learn the lessons of Hiroshima and Nagasaki we must first acknowledge their reality.  We must remember the dead…RestOfNewsletter

That’s one reason Oregon Physicians for Social Responsibility and their partner organizations are inviting you to the annual commemoration of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, tomorrow, August 6th, beginning at 6:00 PM at the Japanese American Historical Plaza at Waterfront Park in downtown Portland. The title for this year’s event is: “70 Years After Hiroshima and Nagasaki: The Ever-Present Nuclear Threat”. The event will feature speakers including atomic bomb survivor Michiko Kornhauser and anti-nuclear activist Carol Urner, with emcee Ronault LS Catalani and performances by Portland Taiko, Tomodachi Chorus, Sahomi Tachibana’s dance group and more. There will also be opportunities for attendees to learn more about and to get involved in international efforts to abolish nuclear weapons.

For more information, please contact Kelly Campbell, Executive Director of Oregon Physicians for Social Responsibility (OPSR), by phone at 503.274.2720 or email at kelly@oregonpsr.org.  You can also visit the OPSR website at PSR.org, or check out the event page and Facebook page for the Hiroshima commemoration.  It’s a somewhat solemn invitation, but one that we think is worthy of sharing with you.  We hope to see you there.

9780805087963For our own commemoration of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, we bring you two other resources.  The first is a book entitled “The Last Train From Hiroshima” by Charles Pellegrino.  This haunting book relates stories from Hiroshima survivors, but concentrates on the words of an even rarer group… people who survived both Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

NukeMapAs we get further from the actual event it can be easier to see the bombings as just historical statistics, so our second resource is designed to personalize the threat of atomic weapons.  What would it look like if an atomic bomb exploded in YOUR city?  Alex Wellerstein, nuclear historian at the Stevens Institute of Technology, created NukeMap to show you.  Pick any point on a map and see exactly how far the destruction would range if the bomb hit there.  Options include factors like airburst, groundburst, or fallout drift.  It’s educational to vary the weapon size a little… the Hiroshima bomb was 15Kt, but common nukes today hit the 100-500Kt range, larger ones run towards 200,000Kt, and the Tsar Bomba, the largest nuke ever tested, yielded a blast of 50Mt (50,000,000 tons of TNT)!

Tsar Bomba

(Click here to see the Tsar Bomba detonation)

 

 

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Keith Tucker’s Toon for August http://tomdwyer.com/2015/newsletters/keith-tuckers-toon-for-august/ http://tomdwyer.com/2015/newsletters/keith-tuckers-toon-for-august/#comments Mon, 10 Aug 2015 21:34:14 +0000 http://tomdwyer.com/?p=18572 The post Keith Tucker’s Toon for August appeared first on Tom Dwyer Automotive.

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2015 Car of the Future http://tomdwyer.com/2015/newsletters/2015-car-of-the-future/ http://tomdwyer.com/2015/newsletters/2015-car-of-the-future/#comments Mon, 10 Aug 2015 21:32:58 +0000 http://tomdwyer.com/?p=18574 We look forward all year to the Sellwood Park Concerts, and not just for the music. One of the high points to us is our Car Of The Future contest, where we see the future of transportation through the eyes of kids. … Continue reading

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Feature--FutureCarWe look forward all year to the Sellwood Park Concerts, and not just for the music. One of the high points to us is our Car Of The Future contest, where we see the future of transportation through the eyes of kids.  As usual the only downside is picking a first, second, and third place drawing, this year from an incredible 108 entries.  Did we pick the Jet-powered Whale?  The Hovercar with the “high-tech wonder light?”  RestOfNewsletterThe Flying Car with the drag-behind Trash Collector?  Or did Nuria come from behind to game the system with her “drawing” of an Invisible Car?  You don’t have to live with suspense… for the Car of the Future, the Future is NOW!

All our winners receive gift certificates to Wallace Books in Sellwood, a charming little independent bookstore that’s been a friend of our shop for many years.  There were many tough choices but we had to pick just three winners, so without further ado here are our top picks with everyone else’s drawings below.  Congratulations to our winners and everyone who entered, we thank you for participating, and we look forward to seeing you again next year!

Our Third place prize of $10 went to Isabel, age 11, who doesn’t settle for DVD players in the back seat. Her sleek little sedan has an entire pop-up playground for “use if kids are bored”!

Second prize went to Willa, age 8. For all the entries, hers was the only spider car. The “Spidrey 10,000″ is never caught in traffic… not only can it hover, but it can step over cars on its extendable spider-stilt legs.

Chloe H., 10, took First Place this year with her deep consideration of alternative fuels… her cars run on sugar, song, and rainbows, but that’s not all… one runs on “Kawainess”. We thought that was a misspelling of some kind (and we spent quite a bit of time trying to figure out what she was trying to spell) until we looked it up online… it’s chiefly related to Japanese culture, and means the quality of being kawaii; cuteness.  An under-utilized fuel, indeed!

Congratulations again to all our winners, and here are the 105 other drawings we wish we could have picked as well…

WillaX2015 WaltX2015 ValentineX2015 TimX2015 ZadieX2015 SamX2015 SafooS2015 RylanX2015 RyelleX2015 RileyX2015 RenaX2015 PrestonB2015 SydneyX2015 StellaX2015 SorinX2015 SophieX2015 SophiaX2015 SloanX2015 SierraX2015 SheaT2015 SheaB2015 SequoiaX2015 SeanL2015 ScamasX2015 MayaX2015 MayaB2015 MateoX2015 MarinaX2015 MadelineW2015 MaddyX2015 OwenX2015 OliviaW2015 OliviaB2015 NuriaX2015 Nuria2X2015 NolanX2015 NoahX2015 NoahF2015 Noah2F2015 NinaX2015 NaomiX2015 MiloX2015 MilesX2015 KarterX2015 JohnX2015 JoeX2015 Joe2X2015 JillX2015 JeremyX2015 Jeremy3X2015 Jeremy2X2015 JackX2015 LukaX2015 LucyX2015 LucaX2015 LuaeX2015 LiuX2015 LilyX2015 LiamX2015 Liam2X2015 LettyX2015 LeoX2015 LariouX2015 KonnerX2015 EddyX2015 IzabellaX2015 IvyL2015 IsabelX2015 IsabelleX2015 Isabel2X2015 IsaacX2015 HoyosX2015 FionaX2015 FinnX2015 FinnB2015 EvelynW2015 EmilyX2015 ElleX2015 EllaX2015 EllaM2015 ElizaX2015 Charlotte2X2015 BrynX2015 BridgetX2015 BriannaX2015 BradX2015 BonnieX2015 BellaB2015 ChloeX2015 ChloeH2015 CharlotteX2015 AmayaC2015 AlmuX2015 AlmoX2015 AlisaX2015 AlexaX2015 AkiraX2015 AirenX2015 AbrleX2015 AveryX2015 AvaX2015 AugustX2015 ArielX2015 AnyoX2015 AndrewX2015 AnaX2015 AmeliaX2015 AmberX2015

 

 

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BERNIEWATCH- Weeknight at Bernie’s http://tomdwyer.com/2015/newsletters/berniewatch-undercover-from-the-july-29-house-party/ http://tomdwyer.com/2015/newsletters/berniewatch-undercover-from-the-july-29-house-party/#comments Mon, 10 Aug 2015 21:31:55 +0000 http://tomdwyer.com/?p=18575 On the ground at the July 29 Bernie bash As we write this the 2016 US Presidential election is about fifteen months away, which means we’re still very much in the pre-season.  Polls don’t mean much yet; it’s like ranking … Continue reading

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On the ground at the July 29 Bernie bash

Feature-BernieAs we write this the 2016 US Presidential election is about fifteen months away, which means we’re still very much in the pre-season.  Polls don’t mean much yet; it’s like ranking baseball standings based on spring training performance.  But even at this early stage there’s one player who’s already drawing the attention of the scouts… Bernie Sanders.  While many of our readers know Bernie from his weekly appearances on the Thom Hartmann show, he’s a mystery to most of the country.  We hate mysteries,RestOfNewsletter so we defrosted our Your Car Matters investigative reporter and sent him to uncover the mystery from the inside.  Here’s his report from the nationwide Bernie Sanders House Party on July 29, and a revealing glimpse into the Belly of the Bern…

(by Charles Letherwood, Portland, Oregon, July 29, 2015)

In July, Bernie Sanders announced his third fundraising event since he entered the race for the Democratic presidential nomination in April.  His opponent for the primary, an unknown Arkansas lawyer named Hillary Clinton, had already established a strong fundraising footprint by raising almost $47 million in the first quarter with an average donation of $144.89.  In stark contrast, Sanders had raised a total of $15 million including $1.5 million raised in the first 24 hours of his campaign.  Average donation?  Less than $45.  Still, in what will be the most expensive presidential election ever, $47 million beats $15 million.  Bernie needed money.

Rather than sucking up to the big Corporate donors Bernie decided to try something different.  His campaign set up organizational meetings around the country on one night, with Bernie to address them all over the internet.  The idea wasn’t new; Barrack Obama did it in 2012 with 4000 “watch parties” for the Debates (Mitt Romney did the same thing with 336 parties).  What was new was how far in advance Bernie was trying it.  The Debate parties were held in October, just a month before the election.  Bernie was already getting some buzz, but would scheduling grassroots organizing parties a full 16 months before the election work?

I went online to track down the Bernie Bash nearest to Sellwood.  There were plenty to choose from with 28 events within 10 miles of Portland, but I picked the one at Watershed PDX on Milwaukie Ave.  The first murmurs of how successful things would be came a day before the actual event, when the party was moved from Watershed to Trackers Earth, a much larger facility about a block away.  When I arrived the line was already out the door.  Moving inside, there were people of every age, shape, size, and description, and all rarin’ to go for Bernie.

To get the people educated and making connections, the folks at Watershed (big Bernie supporters) had prepared 12 different cards with points from Bernie’s campaign from “Reversing Climate Change” to “Reforming Wall Street” to “Growing the Trade Union Movement”.  Each card had 12 boxes to check, and our task was to pick a card, read and understand the point, then go search out the people with the other 11 points and discuss the points with them.  This not only was a great icebreaker between people who knew nothing about each other, but it also gave everyone an opportunity to change from having a nebulous feeling of “I like Bernie” to having an actually informed opinion.Union Card

My first stop from the card table was a small circle of people already excitedly comparing their cards.  The youngest was 12; I had brought my daughter (Hi, Ivy!) to the event as an introduction to politics and was amazed at her passionate and common-sense explanation of why the minimum wage should be raised.  On the other end of the scale was a long- retired woman named Meg who was equally excited about getting big money out of politics.  This little group was a microcosm of the event as a whole… people with little knowledge to lots, from every age and background, but all enthusiastically supporting a man they believe cares about their opinion.  Here’s a little bit about some of the other people I met…

Dan is from Southwest Portland and is supporting Bernie because he’s fed up with unresponsive government after fighting with the City to get a new brewery started.  Moon Shrimp Brewing, unsurprisingly in Portland, will be a gluten-free brewery.

Bernie-4

Claire

Claire is a Bernie supporter who didn’t know about the night’s festivities in advance.  She was walking to the gym, saw the crowd of people and stopped by to check it out, but she was glad she did.  She plans to start volunteering for the campaign when she returns to the U of O this Fall.

Susannah came all the way from Oregon City, and was familiar with Bernie from his Hartmann appearances.  She liked his honesty, but also had a soft spot for his accent.  Susannah brought her friend Debbie with her, but of all the people I talked to during the night Debbie was the only person who described herself as “apolitical”.  She didn’t see much difference at all between Sanders and the other politicians running, but admitted that because she didn’t follow politics she didn’t know for sure.  She said she was open to changing her mind, but when I talked to her later on she still hadn’t become a Bernie Believer.  Oh well.

Bernie-1

Anthony, Brian, and Kalani

Anthony, Brian, and Kalani all had different degrees of political interest, but all found something to like in Bernie.  Anthony had followed him since he announced his candidacy and likes him for his authenticity.  He thought Bernie was “awesome”, though his positions were the obvious intelligent solutions, and thought it was strange that Bernie’s honesty and policies stand out so much against the field of other candidates.  Brian’s priorities were infrastructure and education, he was angry about tax breaks for the affluent, and though Bernie had “common sense” solutions to those problems.  Kalani said she was “desensitized” to politics, and that there was no politician she completely agreed with until she listened to Bernie.

One thing about the Bern… if you’re looking for Obama-style soaring oratory, you won’t find it.  He concentrates on content and specifics instead.  When he got to it Bernie’s actual address was brief and to the point, delivered in his usual earnest and gruff style.  He led with some overall policy points which were no surprise to any of his supporters, and closed with a call to take part in the campaign (it was, after all, an organizing event).   It didn’t matter, though, because he was preaching to a very enthusiastic choir.  The end of the speech was the signal for a huge and sustained round of applause.

On the way out, people eagerly exercised their 21st-century “free speech” rights by giving money to the cause.  The aforementioned Ivy was handing out Sanders bumper stickers as fast as possible from behind a growing pile of money.  One guy stood up on a chair and auctioned off “the very first bumper sticker from the very first printing run from the very first Bernie House Party” for $45.  The volunteer from Watershed was winning her battle to collect cash and at the same time sign up people to help the campaign as fast as they could line up in front of her.   But for all the money flowing into Bernie’s coffers, two things struck me… the piles were made up mostly of 1’s, 5’s, and 10’s instead of 50’s or 100’s, and every dime was given by individual flesh-and-blood people, not a Corporate Person or PAC in the bunch.

I never heard a final number for the money raised at the event, but I did talk to the organizers and multiple counts put the number of attendees at about 450.  Nationwide, Bernie had 3500 events that drew a total of 100,000 people.  Bernie-6We know now that this level of support was no fluke because of the turnout for Senator Sanders’ three major events since; he drew 15,000 in Seattle, 28,000 in Portland, and 27,500 in Los Angeles.  One could ask if this support will last the 15 remaining months until the election, but one could look at it another way… what will his support be like if it’s this strong 15 months out?

I’ve listened to Bernie Sanders for years on his weekly “Brunch With Bernie” visit on the Thom Hartmann Program, so I already knew what he’s about.  I know that he’s a Socialist, not a FOX-News “Socialist-communist-leftist-totalitarian”, but someone who realizes that society has some elements that must be addressed by all of us together.  I know he represented the democratic wing of the Democratic party, in the Elizabeth Warren mold.  I know about his loathing for the Banksters who destroyed our economy, and that he realizes our income inequality gap is unsustainable.  I know he’s as blunt as Chris Christie, yet charming in a way that Christie could never be.  For a long time I’ve known that most average Americans would agree with him on most things, if they only had a chance to hear him.  So I haven’t been surprised at the massive outpouring of support Bernie’s seen since entering the Presidential race.  I’ve only been surprised that he’s finally gotten his chance to speak to the American people, and I can’t wait to be further surprised by their response.

Bernie-5

Why July 29 is such an important date to the Bernie Sanders campaign, Aaron Davis, Washington Post, Jul 17

Bernie Sanders Hosts Biggest Organizing Event of 2016 So Far, Sam Frizell, Time Online, Jul 2015

Protesters drove Bernie Sanders from one Seattle stage. At his next stop, 15,000 people showed. John Wagner, Washington Post, Aug 8

Windfall at Bernie’s: Sanders raises $1.5 million in 24 hours, Dan Merica on CNN, May 2015

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Drew’s Kitchen- Flank Steak Tacos with Avocado and Red Onion Salad http://tomdwyer.com/2015/newsletters/drews-kitchen-for-august/ http://tomdwyer.com/2015/newsletters/drews-kitchen-for-august/#comments Mon, 10 Aug 2015 21:30:29 +0000 http://tomdwyer.com/?p=18576 Summer’s still hanging on (thankfully!) so Drew’s keeping you out on the grill for another month.  Of course, with Drew, that’s never a dull place to be… Ingredients:  1 flank steak (about 1 lb) 3 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided … Continue reading

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aaaDrewKitchButtonSummer’s still hanging on (thankfully!) so Drew’s keeping you out on the grill for another month.  Of course, with Drew, that’s never a dull place to be…

Ingredients: 

  • 1 flank steak (about 1 lb)
  • 3 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 tsp each kosher salt and pepper, divided
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • ½ medium red onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 ripe avocados, peeled, quartered, and thickly sliced crosswise
  • ½ jalapeno chile, thinly sliced
  • ¼ cup loosely packed cilantro leaves
  • 2 tbsp lime juice
  • 12 corn tortillas (6” dia)

Preparation:

  • Heat a grill to high (450° to 550°). Brush steak with 1 tbsp oil, ½ tsp each salt and pepper, and the smoked paprika.  Grill steak, covered, turning once, 6 to 8 minutes total for medium-rare (cut to test).  Lift to a cutting board and loosely cover with foil.  (keep grill on).
  • While steak rests, toss avocados, onion, jalapeno, cilantro, lime juice, remaining 2 tbsp oil, and remaining ½ tsp each salt and pepper in a large bowl.
  • Thinly slice steak against the grain. Quickly grill tortillas a few seconds on each side to warm them.  Serve steak with salad and tortillas.
  • Serves 6; 25 minutes prep

Per Serving- 428 calories, 50% (214 cal) from fat; 19g protein; 24g fat (4.6g sat); 35g carbohydrates (6.8g fiber); 359mg sodium; 29mg cholesterol.

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Shop Talk for August http://tomdwyer.com/2015/newsletters/shop-talk-for-august/ http://tomdwyer.com/2015/newsletters/shop-talk-for-august/#comments Mon, 10 Aug 2015 21:30:00 +0000 http://tomdwyer.com/?p=18577 Referral Reward program Our Referral Reward program is our way of saying “thanks” when our clients so generously refer a new client to our shop.  It’s not a bribery program because YOU don’t benefit, but the non-profit and charitable groups … Continue reading

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Referral Reward program

Our Referral Reward program is our way of saying “thanks” when our clients so generously refer a new client to our shop.  It’s not a bribery program because YOU don’t benefit, but the non-profit and charitable groups you care about do.  Every time a new client comes in because of your referral we’ll make a donation to the non-profit group of your choice.  RestOfNewsletterNot only that, but they’ll be in the running for quarterly and yearly awards as well.  It seems to be working… since this year’s program started in February, we’ve made 61 donations for $2,441.61.  Here are the groups that benefitted in July…

KBOO Radio

TVW (Tualitin Valley Workshop)

Cleveland High School

Oregon Humane Society

Amnesty International

Oregon Food Bank (2 this month)

Portland Waldorf School

ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union)

NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council)

Bernie Sanders 2016

Doernbecher Foundation

Randall Children’s Hospital

St. Andrew Nativity School

Look for our next Quarterly Award Winner in September’s Shop Talk!

Comment of the Month

Comment-of-the-Month-ButtonAlex P. said “By now you know our car better than we do.  You are our kind of people; the kindness, humor, integrity, generosity, warmth, intelligence (and overall cuteness) will keep us coming back every time, every car.  I always come away from your shop loving America!”

Thanks Alex!  We couldn’t let a comment like this go unnoticed.  We’re very proud of our team, for all the reasons you so generously listed.  We try to hire people not just for their qualifications (although that’s obviously the first hurdle) but for their personalities as well.  It makes a better environment for everyone here, and our clients obviously appreciate it as well.  And as for loving America… Alex, you do the same for us! 

Your reviews and Referrals matter

RefRewardsButtonWe are constantly grateful for the supportive and loyal clients we have developed over the years.  Your comments and appreciation keep us on the right road to providing the superior automotive service you deserve.  Your reviews and referrals are not only the highest compliments we can receive, but they’re the lifeblood of our new business.  If you like what you’ve found at Tom Dwyer Automotive Services, please tell a friend or take a minute to write a review on YelpAngieslistGoogle, or the review site of your choice. Thank you!

Latest Automotive Recalls 

RecallListButtonAutomobiles are just like any other product; occasional flaws in manufacture or design can cause problems once they leave the factory.  When an issue is identified the manufacturers and government work hard to bring the vehicles back in for refit or repair, but not all recalls make the front pages.  The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration maintains a constantly updated list of recalls from every manufacturer.  The last month’s recalls are below, but clicking the button at right will take you to the full list at the NHTSA website.




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Health notes- Disease or Profit Center? http://tomdwyer.com/2015/newsletters/health-notes-for-august/ http://tomdwyer.com/2015/newsletters/health-notes-for-august/#comments Mon, 10 Aug 2015 21:29:28 +0000 http://tomdwyer.com/?p=18578 Is it a disease or a profit center? Feeling bad is just part of the human condition sometimes.  Physically, we’ve all toughed out the flu or an unexplained muscle pain that went away with a little rest.  Women overcome the … Continue reading

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aaaHealthNotesButtonIs it a disease or a profit center?

Feeling bad is just part of the human condition sometimes.  Physically, we’ve all toughed out the flu or an unexplained muscle pain that went away with a little rest.  Women overcome the discomfort of menstruation and adolescents live through the embarrassment of acne.  All of these can go beyond “acceptable” levels of pain to require medical intervention, but as humans we soldier through them most of the time. RestOfNewsletter

Psychologically, we accept a certain amount of pain too.  The pain of a broken heart, the death of a loved one, the stress of work, the anxiety of social situations are all things we are usually prepared to live with, but any one of them could easily tip over into the realm of “disease”.

Where does one draw the line?  Low T, Simple Chronic Halitosis, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Oppositional-Defiant Disorders, and a slough of other physical and psychological ailments have their roots in real conditions that can cripple people’s lives, but most of us at least occasionally deal with mild versions of these problems throughout our lives.  When do they become diseases?  One answer is, when there’s money to be made.

Here are several stories that examine the link between diseases, “diseases”, and the marketing departments of pharmaceutical companies around the world.  And just for fun, we have one article that tells you how to get healthier without going to the pill poppers…

Hey Doc, I Have Poop Disorder': 6 ‘Diseases’ Big Pharma Is Trying to Make You Believe You Suffer From,  Martha Rosenberg on AlterNet, Dec 2014

Peddling Paranoia, Alan Cassels in New Internationalist Magazine, Nov 2003

Disorders Made to Order, Brendan Koerner in Mother Jones, Jul/Aug 2002

Selling Sickness: How Drug Companies Are Turning Us All Into Patients, Michael Fitzpatrick in the British Medical Journal, Sep 2005

Psychiatry’s sick compulsion: turning weaknesses into diseases, Irwin Savodnik in Los Angeles Times, Jan 2006

Calling an Ordinary Health Problem a Disease Leads to Bigger Problems, Aaron Carroll in the New York Times, Jun, 2014

Disease mongering and drug marketing, Howard Wolinsky in EMBO Reports, Jul 2005

Feeling Intense Emotions Doesn’t Make You Crazy—But That’s Not What Big Pharma Wants You to Think, Allegra Kirkland on AlterNet, Mar 2015

And here’s the “Good News” articleThe Science of Stress and How Our Emotions Affect Our Susceptibility to Burnout and Disease, Maria Popova, Brain Pickings

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Bridge Update- Surprising answer to our Trivia question http://tomdwyer.com/2015/newsletters/surprising-answer-to-our-trivia-question/ http://tomdwyer.com/2015/newsletters/surprising-answer-to-our-trivia-question/#comments Mon, 10 Aug 2015 21:28:56 +0000 http://tomdwyer.com/?p=18579 6th and Tacoma pictures Any inconvenience of the Bridge construction is vastly overrated.  Sure, the area is torn up and flaggers abound, but the bridge traffic usually moves smoothly and consistently.  That changed for us in the last week in … Continue reading

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aaaBridgeUpdateButton6th and Tacoma pictures

Any inconvenience of the Bridge construction is vastly overrated.  Sure, the area is torn up and flaggers abound, but the bridge traffic usually moves smoothly and consistently.  That changed for us in the last week in July as construction focused on the intersection of 6th and Tenino St.  A new traffic signal will be going in as part of the Bridge project, and crews had closed the intersection for the whole week while they put in the underground stuff for the light.  It will be a big change for us when it’s activated, and should greatly reduce the difficulty of a left turn onto the Bridge.6thTenino Rendering

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Bridge Trivia answer

There has been quite a lot of furor over the New Yorker’s recent article about an impending major quake in the Northwest, so the answer to last month’s Trivia Question seems particularly important.  As we told you then, the Northwest is about 73 years overdue for the Big One.  One of the area’s biggest vulnerabilities is the structural integrity of our bridges, because aside from the devastation if a bridge collapses during the quake itself, the loss of transportation for repair and rebuilding would be crippling for years to come.  So, in our July newsletter, we asked “Which of Portland’s bridges are CURRENTLY earthquake-rated?”  Here are the bridges we counted as “Portland bridges” for the question…

Marquam Bridge (I-5 over Willamette)      Sauvie’s Island Bridge

Interstate Bridge (I-5 over Columbia)     St. Johns Bridge

Fremont Bridge     Broadway Bridge     Steel Bridge     Ross Island Bridge

Burnside Bridge     Morrison Bridge     Hawthorne Bridge

Glen Jackson Bridge (I-205 over Columbia)     Sellwood Bridge

Abernethy Bridge (I-205 over Willamette)     Tilikum Crossing

And we started you off with this hint… of the 15 bridges listed above, only THREE are earthquake rated!

Only a few people took us up on the contest, and unfortunately, none of them had the right answers.  We also asked riders in our Courtesy Shuttle if they knew, but no joy there either.  Pretty much everybody got one of them… the new Tilikum bridge is currently up to spec.  Other answers were (literally) all over the map, with the Marquam and Fremont getting a few nods.  But wrong there, too.  So, here are the actual answers, as confirmed by the Multnomah County Communications Office (the folks in charge of communication for the Bridge Project)…

The Tilikum Crossing,

The new Sauvie’s Island Bridge,

…and (believe it or not) The Sellwood Bridge!

Yes, you’re reading that right… our wobbly neighbor, ground zero for construction in Portland since 2012, is currently one of the only three earthquake-rated bridges in Portland!  Here’s why… no regulation required the old Sellwood Bridge be brought up to earthquake spec (which is one reason the other twelve area bridges haven’t been addressed yet).  BUT… the move of the old span to new supports meant the temporary bridge would have to be regulated as a new build during construction.  It would have to meet earthquake code.  Although the old bridge was dangerously compromised, most of the structural damage was on the farthest west end of the bridge and the main part of the river span was in surprisingly good shape.  By cutting the damaged part away and just moving the structurally sound part onto the new, earthquake-ready supports, the engineers kept the old Sellwood Bridge safe and dignified in these last few years of its life.

Looks like we’ll be holding on to those spiffy First Aid kits we were offering as prizes, but don’t worry… we’ll have another chance for you to win soon!

Here’s the Horse’s Mouth…

As always, Multnomah County maintains the definitive website on everything related to the Sellwood Bridge Replacement project, www.sellwoodbridge.org.  Construction and closure alerts, archived information, and other resources are all available 24/7 for your convenience.  If you’re looking for something that’s not on the website, you can contact Mike Pullen (mike.j.pullen@multco.us503-209-4111) or visit www.sellwoodbridge.org.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bridge Trivia answer

There has been quite a lot of furor over the New Yorker’s recent article about an impending major quake in the Northwest, so the answer to last month’s Trivia Question seems particularly important.  As we told you then, the Northwest is about 73 years overdue for the Big One.  One of the area’s biggest vulnerabilities is the structural integrity of our bridges, because aside from the devastation if a bridge collapses during the quake itself, the loss of transportation for repair and rebuilding would be crippling for years to come.  So, in our July newsletter, we asked “Which of Portland’s bridges are CURRENTLY earthquake-rated?”  Here are the bridges we counted as “Portland bridges” for the question…

 

 

Marquam Bridge (I-5 over Willamette)

Interstate Bridge (I-5 over Columbia)

Sauvie’s Island Bridge

St. Johns Bridge

Fremont Bridge

Broadway Bridge

Steel Bridge

Burnside Bridge

Morrison Bridge

Hawthorne Bridge

Ross Island Bridge

Sellwood Bridge

Glen Jackson Bridge (I-205 over Columbia)

Abernethy Bridge (I-205 over Willamette)

Tilikum Crossing

 

 

And we started you off with this hint… of the 15 bridges listed above, only THREE are earthquake rated!

 

Only a few people took us up on the contest, and unfortunately, none of them had the right answers.  We also asked riders in our Courtesy Shuttle if they knew, but no joy there either.  Pretty much everyone got one of them… the new Tilikum bridge is currently up to spec.  Other answers were all over the map, with the Marquam and Fremont getting a few nods.  But wrong there, too.  So, here are the actual answers, as confirmed by the Multnomah County Communications Office (the folks in charge of communication for the Bridge Project)…

The Tilikum Crossing,

The new Sauvie’s Island Bridge,

…and (believe it or not) The Sellwood Bridge!

 

Yes, you’re reading that right… our wobbly neighbor, ground zero for construction in Portland since 2012, is currently one of the only three earthquake-rated bridges in Portland!  Here’s why… no regulation required the old Sellwood Bridge be brought up to earthquake spec (which is one reason the other twelve area bridges have been addressed yet).  BUT… the move of the old span to new supports meant the temporary bridge would have to be regulated as a new build during construction.  It would have to meet earthquake code.  Although the old bridge was dangerously compromised, most of the structural damage was on the farthest west end of the bridge and the main part of the river span was in surprisingly good shape.  By cutting the damaged part away and just moving the structurally sound part onto the new, earthquake-ready supports, the engineers kept the old Sellwood Bridge safety and dignified in these last few years of its life.

 

Looks like we’ll be holding on to those spiffy First Aid kits we were offering as prizes, but don’t worry… we’ll have another chance for you to win soon!

 

Here’s the Horse’s Mouth…

As always, Multnomah County maintains the definitive website on everything related to the Sellwood Bridge Replacement project, www.sellwoodbridge.org.  Construction and closure alerts, archived information, and other resources are all available 24/7 for your convenience.  If you’re looking for something that’s not on the website, you can contact Mike Pullen (mike.j.pullen@multco.us503-209-4111) or visit www.sellwoodbridge.org.

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“Last Train From Hiroshima” http://tomdwyer.com/2015/newsletters/last-train-from-hiroshima/ http://tomdwyer.com/2015/newsletters/last-train-from-hiroshima/#comments Mon, 10 Aug 2015 21:28:00 +0000 http://tomdwyer.com/?p=18580 Hiroshima was in the news recently as the world observed the 70th anniversary of its bombing, and the bombing of Nagasaki three days later.  We were proud to co-sponsor a commemoration of the event by Physicians for Social Responsibility at … Continue reading

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aaaBookSpotlightButtonHiroshima was in the news recently as the world observed the 70th anniversary of its bombing, and the bombing of Nagasaki three days later.  We were proud to co-sponsor a commemoration of the event by Physicians for Social Responsibility at the Japanese American Historical Plaza in downtown Portland.  In our article about the event we recommended the book “Last Train From Hiroshima” as a good read, and so we illuminate it further with this month’s Book Spotlight…

9780805087963“Last Train From Hiroshima”

by Charles Pellegrino

(review from Powells.com)

Drawing on the voices of atomic-bomb survivors and the new science of forensic archaeology, Charles Pellegrino describes the events and aftermath of two days in August when nuclear devices detonated over Japan changed life on Earth forever.  “Last Train from Hiroshima” offers readers a stunning “you are there” time capsule, gracefully wrapped in elegant prose. Charles Pellegrino’s scientific authority and close relationship with the A-bombs survivors make his account the most gripping and authoritative ever written.

At the narratives’ core are eyewitness accounts of those who experienced the atomic explosions firsthand, the Japanese civilians on the ground and the American flyers in the air. Thirty people are known to have fled Hiroshima for Nagasaki, where they arrived just in time to survive the second bomb. One of them, Tsutomu Yamaguchi, is the only person who experienced the full effects of the cataclysm at ground zero both times. The second time, the blast effects were diverted around the stairwell in which Yamaguchi had been standing, placing him and a few others in a shock cocoon that offered protection, while the entire building disappeared around them.

Review:

“Using a combination of firsthand accounts of Japanese A-bomb survivors, American aviators, and classified documents of government officials, Pellegrino reconstructs two horrifying days and their aftermath when the age of atomic warfare was introduced over Japan. He is fascinated with the ‘strange alchemy’ of these cruel weapons (‘One ten-millionth of a second later, a sphere of gamma rays escap[ed] the core at light speed’) as the bomb fell on Mrs. Aoyam tending her garden at Point Zero, literally before she could see it coming. Pellegrino is equally interested in the grotesque effects the blasts in Hiroshima and Nagasaki inflicted on the human body with its gamma rays, neutron spray and poisonous black rain. The stories of the few Japanese survivors includes a group of 30 civilians fleeing from Hiroshima to Nagasaki where they arrived to endure the second bomb, are heart-stopping. Pellegrino dissects the complex political and military strategies that went into the atomic detonations and the untold suffering heaped on countless Japanese civilians, weaving all of the book’s many elements into a wise, informed protest against any further use of these terrible weapons.

EXTRA:  Pellegrino’s book, first released in 2010, raised questions because one source had falsely claimed to be an engineer on the Hiroshima mission, and two other sources’ names were changed without acknowledgement.  The book was recalled by its publisher at the time, and the issues have been fixed for the 2015 edition.  We have both copies in our library for your enjoyment.

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