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November 2004

In This Issue

We hope to see you at our next
Sunday, November 7, 2004
Kafka's Kastle (Bruce Taylor's condo)

Directions and any additional info
will be found at 206-323-5483.

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Art Sharing

SEPTEMBER at the home of Lida and Carl Sloan. Lida played piano; "Because of You", Carl showed art photos, Pippin Sardo showed l8th Century costume. Mike Munro showed photos of Bridal Veil Falls on way up to Lake Serene and shared "political rant". Bruce Taylor read short story, "Icebergs", Peter Wagener read from book in progress, Fish Come With Rice, Donna Barr gave report on S'Lahal, Bonegaming, Roberta Gregory shared one page coming, "Anhar"--about a woman raising orphaned orangutans. Sala Sweet and Dick Bringloe also attended.

OCTOBER at the home of Bruce Taylor. Bruce shared information about marketing savvy from Sunny Kobe Cook's book, Common Things Uncommon Ways and read short story, "You Bring Out The Beast In Me". Bruce is also having a story ("Morality Play") appear nationally in a science fiction magazine, Continuum, and his book, Kafka's Uncle And Other Strange Tales, will be published by Afterbirth Press. Roberta Gregory shared her art and she will also have a presentation at The Hugo House ("My Life as a Cartoon") October 30th. Christ Marshall presented portraits from the 80's in Seattle, Carl and Linda Sloan presented new abstract photography. Lida also shared a poem, "Hugs and Chocolate". Todd Christoffel. leader of "don't ask" band presented nouveau folk pop songs. He'll be performing on Oct. 30th--for information, contact him at todd.christoffel@yahoo.com. Mike Munro presented a "scurrilous story", Peter Wagener read a new except form upcoming book, Fish Come With Rice, Pippin Sardo passed around pictures of herself dancing flamenco. Dick Bringloe showed off his small, hand-made miniature cars, much to the delight of all. New artists, Angela and Wade Rockett talked about their backgrounds as artists and their aspirations. As usual, the chemistry and fun was awesome (as it usually is in a safe environment) and a great time was had by all. SEE YOU AT THE NEXT MEETING! Next Newsletter out mid-December.

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Other News

Our Annual Open House/Tree Decorating/FOKUS Meeting — to get you into the Christmas spirit no matter who the hell wins the election — will be Sunday, December 5, same place. We begin at three in the afternoon to allow a little extra time for socializing. Re. FOKUS sharing, maybe something with a Christmas/holiday theme? Not required, just a suggestion given 'tis the season and all.

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Bruce Taylor's Editorial

If I Were John Kerry, This Is What I would Say

"My fellow Americans. A good evening to you. In a few days, you will choose a president of a representative democracy that has endured since l776. This election may well be the most important election since the Civil War, or perhaps in the 228 years of the American Republic itself. For what we face, on this election eve, is a proposed change of the mandate of power that will decide the future of this great nation. Do we continue as a representative democracy or do we risk exchanging our civil liberties and openness of government for continued secrecy or, worse, in the name of security, potentially even compromising our constitution as well as our civil liberties--for once the choice is made, the dye is cast and it becomes increasingly difficult to reverse the erosion of the form of governing which has been the beacon and bastion of liberty, freedom, opportunity, fairness and an example for the world for 228 years.

“We must not let our enemies triumph, not by war, but by making us so afraid that we would even remotely consider altering the very foundation of our government, our democracy, the openness of our governing.

“This is the most fundamental decision we must consider and consider wisely. What kind of government do we wish to have? What kind of government shall we have as an example for our children? Our children's children--yea, for the world? For it is not terrorism that is the danger, it is the fear of terrorism that is the danger.

“And if we change the way we govern, from an open society, to a secretive society, to a society where we are willing to compromise our basic liberties for security, then, in the words of Benjamin Franklin, those who are willing to do this deserve neither. Those who are willing to do this have already given terrorists their victory. Without firing another shot, they have made us fearful, so fearful that we are willing to take the road of self-censorship, self-suppression. And when that happens, the America that you and I grew up in--becomes but a memory.

“My fellow Americans, I implore you to consider with great thought and deliberation which way this country shall continue and how we shall endure. Your decision, your vote on November second will provide a mandate of power to--what sort of government? The government that we have been moving toward for the last four years? If so, then please, by all means, vote for my opponent, for that is the government that you shall have: fear and security-based, at the risk, as we have already seen, of compromising our civil rights. Or, we can give the mandate of power to respect our history, to the ideals set forth by the framers of the constitution, that created the country that enshrined individual freedom and liberty in the context of a social contract and civil discourse that has been the symbol of hope and inspiration for people around the world since l776. Know exactly what you choose this election eve and choose well, for, my fellow citizens, the mandate of power is in your hands. Know well what you choose. It is my most profound hope and trust that, as you consider these words, these events at this time in our history, that you will choose the form of government that will honor our history, honor our sacrifices for freedom and the rule of law, so that generations to come will look back and say, ‘That in such a time of uncertainty fear and darkness, you so believed in the strength and power of democracy that terrorists could not frighten you into changing it. We thank you. We honor your courage.’

“And those future generations will know that, in the words of Lincoln, a government of the people, by the people, for the people shall not--and I add--did not--perish from this earth.

“The future is in your hands. In my heart, I know and trust you will choose well."

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Newsletter Update

Due to technical challenges with Bob Olson’s computer, the printed version of this FOKUS Newsletter has been reworked in MS Publisher by Benjamin Miller of www.pantarbe.com on his computer. However, as the newsletter file from Bob is incompatible with Benjamin’s computer (he could not open it at least), one or more submitted works from the initial version are sadly missing from this issue. Many apologies for this — please look for them in our next issue or here online.

We still seek to have members subscribe to our mailed newsletter. A $15 (US dollar) yearly contribution will put you on our mailing list.

Subscriptions to the mailing list are 15.00 US Dollars per year. As FOKUS does not have a bank account, please make checks or moneyorders out to either Bruce Taylor or Bob Olson. Send your check with a letter providing your mailing address to either of them.

  • Bruce Taylor
    2001 E Yesler Way, #23
    Seattle, WA 98122, USA


  • Bob Olson
    252 168th Ave SE
    Bellevue, WA 98008, USA
  • and we'll send you the newsletter via US Post.

    Alternatively, at no charge, you can choose to access the newsletter here. Meeting details and timely announcements and other news will be posted here first. The remaining content of past issues will be available a month after the printed issue has been out -- editorials, creative works, and articles. (If you would like a current, complete newsletter, please subscribe to our printed version!). Work on the back issues online is underway -- please check back. To our loyal web visitors, thank you for your patience.

    Submissions are welcome! We want to know what is happening to you. And we want to publish your submissions to the FOKUS newsletter. There are three ways to do this:

  • Call Bob Olson, the FOKUS newsletter editor, at 425-747-3879 to share information over the phone
  • Submit illustrations, poetry, short stories, articles or announcements through the mail to
    Bob Olson, 252 168th Ave SE, Bellevue, WA 98008, USA.
    (Note Bob does not have e-mail. Material that is two single-spaced pages or less can be mailed to him. Longer material should be on a floppy disc for his editorial convenience.)
  • Submit via e-mail to fokus@pantarbe.com SUBJECT: NEWSLETTER SUBMISSION (which will go to Bruce Taylor, who does have e-mail.)
    Any online submissions specifically for this page should be e-mailed to editor@pantarbe.com SUBJECT: FOKUS SUBMISSION.
  • Please address concerns to Bruce Taylor (brucebtaylor@aol.com).

    Thank you,
    Benjamin Miller
    FOKUS Member and Pantarbe.com Host

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    Last updated:  November 1, 2004