Friday, September 30, 2005

I Was Wrong (Alert The Media)

I really don’t know if Tom Delay is guilty of anything or not, in fact, I admit I don’t know much about Tom Delay at all. But After reading about this case, It certainly appears that Ronnie Earle, Democrat District Attorney for Travis County, Texas, is indeed gunning for Delay, and will resort to false allegations to accomplish that goal.

The now famous Rep. Tom Delay indictment filed Wednesday in the 147th Judicial District Court in Travis County, Texas can be found here in it's entirety.

Read it. It is relatively short.

Notice that Mr Delay is mentioned only in the beginning of the document where it lists the defendants of the case and at the end where it mentions that he did “knowingly, intelligently and voluntarily waive the application of articles 12.01 and 12.03 of the Texas code of criminal procedure“…etc, etc, etc

What does this legalese mean? It means that Tom Delay allegedly knew of a conspiracy.


There’s more to this than meets the eye. This website here claims that Travis county DA Ronnie Earle is a partisan hack who has been gunning for Tom Delay for years. Indeed, Earle has convened five other grand jury’s in the past for the purpose of indicting Mr. Delay but has failed every time. In addition to that, he has attempted on three separate occasions to obtain various indictments of Kay Bailey Hutchinson, Republican Senator from Texas, to no avail.

The Wall Street Journal has this on the subject:

The Majority Leader also deserves the presumption of innocence because of Mr. Earle's guilty past. A liberal Democrat, he has a history of indicting political enemies, Democrat and Republican, on flimsy evidence that didn't hold up in court. In the mid-1980s, he indicted Attorney General Jim Mattox, a rival of his ally Ann Richards, on bribery charges. Mr. Mattox was acquitted and won re-election.
In 1993, he indicted Kay Bailey Hutchison, who'd just been elected to the U.S. Senate, on charges of misconduct and records tampering. Mr. Earle was forced to drop the case even before it went to trial. Earlier this year, the prosecutor delivered a widely criticized speech at a Democratic fund-raiser in which he compared his prosecutorial targets to "Mussolini and his fascists" and all but declared that he had Mr. DeLay in his sights.

Other websites I have found indicate that Earle is simply a good ‘ol country lawyer who only wants to ferret out corruption in government.

A very noble cause, right?

Well, lets see what the Ronnie Earle apologists have to say about their hero.

Media Matters says:

While Earle is an elected Democrat, as Media Matters for America has previously noted, a March 17* editorial in the Houston Chronicle commended his work: "During his long tenure, Travis County District Attorney Ronnie Earle has prosecuted many more Democratic officials than Republicans. The record does not support allegations that Earle is prone to partisan witch hunts." This assertion supports Earle's own claim about his record; a March 6 article in the El Paso Times reported: "Earle says local prosecution is fundamental and points out that 11 of the 15 politicians he has prosecuted over the years were Democrats."

What the article doesn’t mention is that the Democrats that Earle indicted were political enemies of Earle, and Conservative Democrats at that.

Rush Limbaugh reports that Earle has dropped charges against major corporations in the past on the promise to him that they will contribute money to his pet projects. Captains Quarters does, too, saying:

“Ronnie Earle, the Texas prosecutor who has indicted associates of House Majority Leader Tom DeLay in an ongoing campaign-finance investigation, dropped felony charges against several corporations indicted in the probe in return for the corporations' agreement to make five- and six-figure contributions to one of Earle's pet causes.”

There is a lot more to be found there. Read that, too.

That is called extortion, and if memory serves, extortion is illegal, too.

It is also interesting to note, that MSNBC and other “mainstream media outlets“, somehow conveniently fail to mention that fact, or the fact that Earle is a Democrat.

I was watching television this morning and I caught just enough of the Daily show to hear Jon Stewart, the very Liberal host, announce the indictment of Delay accompanied by a thunderous chorus of applause, hoots, and cheers. He failed to mention that Earle is a Democrat, also.

NOTE: It occurred to me that The Daily Show audience is a collection of people who don’t read, or at least, blindly accept any and everything that the Liberals tell them, never mind whether it’s true or not. In short, if they can read, they must read the New York Times, a newspaper that doesn’t let truth stand in the way of their “objective reporting“, as evidenced by the recent admission that the story reported by them regarding Geraldo Rivera, turned out to be manufactured out of whole cloth. That is at least the third time in the last year that they have been caught in a lie, so why would anyone ever take anything they say as fact?

After doing the additional research that I didn’t do yesterday before posting my comment, it has become clear that I owe Sean Hannity an apology. He was right. I was wrong. Rush is right, too. Ronnie Earle is just as much a partisan hack with a vendetta against Delay as they say he is.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Don't Get Your Hopes Up, Liberals, But...

Readers of my blog no doubt have noticed lately that I seem to be undergoing an introspection of sorts.(What? Again?) What I mean is I am having second thoughts about what I believe, politically. I think my main problem is that I am both blessed and cursed with the innate ability to see and understand things from all possible perspectives, and that's what leads me to question my own ideology. There are several factors at play in this introspection:

The list of Bill Clinton's accomplishments that ER published in my comments section.

Jaymeister, and Liam, and, to a lesser extent, even Rich Bachelor making some compelling arguments.

The rampant overspending of the Bush Administration and the Republican dominated legislature, particuarly the transportation bill which contains so much pork we could literally hold a BBQ for the world.

Bush's announcement of the appointment of another of his cronies to an important leadership post in the immigration department, who has no experience in immigration matters at all.

The failure of Bush and his administration to secure the borders.

Today, I have discovered that Sean Hannity is engaged in the type of spin that I used to think only Liberals were guilty of. On his program today, he addressed the issue of Tom Delay's indictment of campaign contribution related malfeasance. Hannity told his listeners that The Travis County Texas District Attorney was a partisan hack who has a long record of indicting Republican politicians in the state of Texas. We are led to believe, if we take Hannity's word for it, that Ronnie Earle has a personal vendetta against all Republicans.

I personally don't see where Delay did anything even questionable, let alone illegal, but if that be so, why would Hannity be employing typical Liberal tactics by attacking the accuser?

I did some research into the case because ER brought it up on his blog, and found a website that seems to indicate that Mr. Earle is simply doing his job, and that he has actually prosecuted more Democrats than Republicans during his tenure in office. However, I also keep in mind that the information in that site may be as much spin in Mr Earles favor as Hannity's spin is against him.

Lately, I have learned it's best to not accept anything on face value. Or, in other words, "Don't believe everything you read". Especially if it's in the New York Times.

How many times are their reporters going to be caught lying before no one ever believes them again? Geeeez.

I also looked up the actual indictment of Rep. Tom Delay. To Hannity's credit, he appears to be correct in his assessment that Mr. Delay has little to do with the charges listed in the indictment other than an association with the other 2 defendants. The allegation that Delay is personally involved in any illegal activity is tenuous at best. Although I don't understand legalese that well, and the particular statutes mentioned in the indictment aren't explained so that a 4 year old can understand them, and I definitely need things explained to me as simply as possible.

In short, I am not saying that I am about to become a Liberal, or even a Democrat. I have been both in the past and I no longer ascribe to that ideology. The issues that concern me are issues of Republicans behaving in a most un-Republican like manner. We conservatives are supposed to be against out of control spending, and for integrity in politics, and picking the right person for the right job regardless of personal feelings, and in controlling the borders.

I don't see that happening lately.

Could it be that President Bush, knowing that he can't run again, is throwing caution to the wind and just doing whatever he wants with no regard to the future of his party?

I don't know, but it certainly looks like that from where I sit.

But then, Bruiser puts things in their proper perspective for me.

Is This War Necessary?

Lately, I’ve been thinking maybe the war in Iraq really is unnecessary. Maybe the left’s arguments are starting to make sense to me.

So why don’t we just leave and let them have Iraq? What do we owe the Iraqi people? Do you think they would do the same for us if we were the nation under the oppression of a ruthless dictator and they were the leaders of the free world? Are we supposed to care if the Muslim extremists make a shambles of Iraq?

They are not Americans. We are not obligated to free them, or help to bring about a Democracy.


Are the terrorists really only in Iraq because we’re there? I believe they are.

You read me right. I believe they are there because we are there.

But not because they want us out of Iraq. Quite the contrary, I believe they want us there. We are the terrorists excuse to commit acts of terrorism. True Islam does not condone random acts of violence, nor does it condone suicide. True Islam has more in common with Christianity than we, as non-Muslims think. The main difference is that they deny the deity of Christ, that Jesus is the son of God. They believe that God has no son and no father. True Islam is indeed a religion of peace, the way Mohammed envisioned .

But the terrorists are not devotees of “true” Islam.

The only way the terrorists can continue to terrorize without incurring the wrath of Muslim nations is to have an enemy. We serve that purpose. If we were not considered enemies, the terrorists would not have an excuse to attack us, and our intervention to assist in the toppling of Saddam’s regime gives them the perfect excuse to invade and terrorize.

Am I saying that we should pull out of Iraq? Not at all. If we were to pull out of Iraq, the terrorists would most certainly follow us to America’s shores and attack us over here. Or, if we were to send troops into Iran, or North Korea, or North Africa, or Northern Ireland, or North Dakota, they would be there to attack and terrorize.

The Muslim extremists want to kill and maim. That is all they want. Even if all America were to convert to Islam, they would still want us dead. We represent to them everything they want but do not have, and they are envious. This is not about religious differences, it is about power.

Whether we are there for a good reason or not, we cannot pull out. We have no choice but to stay and fight. And to see this through to it’s conclusion, whatever and whenever that will be. As President Bush has stated, It’s better to fight them over there than at home.

We can choose to be reactive or we can choose to be pro-active. Either way, we will have to fight, and we will have to win.

So. Is the war necessary?

You bet it is. America’s survival depends on it.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Nothing's Cold as Ashes After the Fire is Gone

Just as I predicted, Cindy Sheehan’s flame is being extinguished, and what’s more, she is the one that’s wielding the fire extinguisher.

Sean Hannity said today, that she cannot get out of the spotlight. It happens often when someone who’s not used to media attention suddenly is thrust into the spotlight, they become addicted to it and then they cannot get out. In Ms. Sheehans case, I don’t believe she wants to get out. She has become a media whore. Her crusade is no longer about ending a war in the name of peace, but about getting more attention for herself.

I actually understand this phenonomen well. I started my blog because I only wanted to state my opinon on a variety of subjects, as a kind of catharsis, but as people became aware of it, and brilliant people, people who are professional writers and journalists etc, began commenting and engaging in discourse with me over my opinions, it encouraged me and now I think, probably stupidly, that I am more talented a writer than I am. Just as Cindy stupidly thinks her opinion matters more than it does.

In a Liberal blog, she posted this comment:

"i am watching cnn and it is 100 percent rita...even though it is a little wind and a little is bad, but there are other things going on in this country today...and in the world!!!!"

With that one short statement, she summed up her entire agenda. It’s all about Cindy.

And then the inevitable happened. It started out with one commentator, a resident of southeast Texas, objecting to her dismissing Hurricane Rita as "a little wind and a little rain", and ending his/her comment with these words:

"Shame on you, you're jealous of media coverage of other's suffering. You've become a caricature and I no longer support you. I'm ashamed I ever did."

(When I downloaded this photo, it was captioned "Grieving Cindy")

Then, others joined in. Most of them said they were against the war also and have, up to now, supported her, but like the first commentator, they are withdrawing their support. The last commentator in the thread, who seems to be a conservative, said this:

I can't believe the unmitigated gaul of you lady! You have the nerve to get up on your soapbox and accuse President Bush of being insensitive and uncaring about Americans and then you make a statement like that?
Every time you open your mouth you just keep on proving what a selfish and horrible person you are.
You call our own military (which your son was a member of) murders.
You refer to the terrorists who kidnap, torture, behead and bomb not only our troops and relief workers but innocent Iraqi civilians including children as "freedom fighters".
You refer to our brave MEN and WOMEN who made the conscious choice to join the military out of love of their country and who defend the rights that YOU take for granted as "children".
You point a finger at anyone who questions your sincerity and then point the same finger at President Bush and question his sincerity in helping the hurricane victims in the south.
You relish in the claims of the lunatic left that you have a "moral authority" because you lost a son in Iraq and then make snap judgments about those who lost sons in Iraq and still support the war! (So I guess you think the First Amendment only applies to you is that it?) Does that mean that those parents aren't "moral authorities"?
You stoop to an all time low when you start badmouthing your own family and belittling their love of Casey and even sacrifice your ex-husband in the media because he doesn't support your lust for attention.
And now you get arrested. And you have that big shit-eating grin on your face when it happened. I suppose you see yourself as a martyr. As the new Rosa Parks or Martin Luther King Jr.
Well you're not! Those people actually stood for something other than media glory, unlike you.
You are a sad excuse for a human being, an American and most of all as a mother.
Casey is better off where he is now because he's free from you!

I would have been more respectful to her than that, but the sentiment is the same.


Just for the record, this post was originally going to be about the fact that I object to war, too.

The difference is, unlike Cindy Sheehan, I know sometimes war is a necessary evil.

Monday, September 26, 2005

Who Say's They're Anti-American?

This past weekend, There were two rallies held in Washington, DC. One was Cindy Sheehan's anti-war, anti-Bush "rally for peace". The other one was a rally organized to support Bush and the war in Iraq by the Gold Star Mothers. Not the pseudo "Gold Star Mothers for Peace" that Cindy Sheehan started, but the real "Gold Star Mothers", the ones whose sons were killed in action fighting for America and the ones that support the cause that their children died protecting.

I watched some of the Pro Bush rally on C-Span, and I was moved by the stories of bravery and sacrifice of the sons and husbands and brothers that were chronicled by their family members.

As to the other rally, I was struck by the diversity of groups that attended, and who I believe were not there to support Ms Sheehan, but to bring attention to their own agendas.

There were Communist groups, Socialist groups, anarchist groups, Marxists, grandmother groups, environmental groups, vegan groups, even a Portugese against Bush group. No kidding. Portugese! No wonder that rally had so many participants. It would seem that every group that has any kind of anti-Bush or even anti-government agenda was well represented.

In contrast, the only groups present at the other rally were the ones that were there to support Bush, and the Gold Star Families. No other fringe groups.

I wonder how much the presence of some of those extreme groups at Cindy's rally really helped her cause? She, and many other anti war protestors claim that they are patriotic and believe in the principles upon which America was founded. But anarchists don't believe in those things. Communists and Marxists don't support a democratic form of government. I think, although I may be mistaken, that even Liberals think some of the groups attending that rally are nuts.

So what I'm wondering is this:

Do the organizers of that rally believe that the presence of these lunatic fringe groups really help their cause? Or do they just accept them because it makes their group look bigger?

Or is Cindy Sheehan a member of the Marxists and Communists and Socialists and Anarchists?

I think if I were running some kind of rally, I would discourage any groups that would tend to undermine my cause.

As it stands now, however questionably noble her cause may have been, it has lost whatever credibility it ever had, if any.

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Class Envy

I was talking to my college student son on the phone last night, who informed me he had just registered as a Democrat. While disappointed, I respect him for caring enough, at least, to take an interest. But I wondered briefly what brought him to the conclusion that the Democrat party is the one that would best represent him.

I say briefly because upon further discussion he outlined some of his reasons. It was then that I realized how much party rhetoric and yes, even the media to some extent, can influence us in regards to who we vote for to represent us.

One of the biggest phrases that I think influences many people is this:

"Tax cuts for the rich"

This phrase exploits the notion of class envy. Class envy is the phrase that refers to the curious resentment of people because of some perceived notion of snobbery stemming from the oft mistaken idea that they possess undeserved riches, far beyond the amount that they really need.

wikipedia defines it thusly:

"Class envy is a pejorative term sometimes used to describe criticisms of the rich and powerful by the poor and less powerful."

Yeah, that's what I said. Sort of.

I know a little about this subject as I myself have suffered from this malady. It is only from examining this concept from a non-biased point of view that I achieved clarity of thought on the subject.

For one thing, I had to get past the fallacy that the wealthy don't work for a living. Of course they do. In fact, I believe for the most part, they work a good bit harder than I. It's just a different kind of work. I describe it this way:

It takes hard work to get rich and it takes hard work to remain rich. I have often said that mental work is more tiring than physical work. There are exceptions.
(Paris Hilton comes to mind. And stirs in me.... nevermind. That's a subject for another post.)

Another, better example:

There is a man in West Virginia who won the biggest single lottery in history. He didn't work for his riches aside from working hard enough to earn the dollar that he paid for the lottery ticket.

Actually he illustrates my next point as well:

It takes some intelligence to achieve and to keep wealth. Of course, there are those who were born into wealth, but even they have to have brains enough to be able to hold onto their wealth, with a few exceptions. There are, after all, exceptions to every rule.

The above mentioned man is an idiot. The sheer size of his lottery winnings is the only reason why he is still rich. This guy has had large quantities of cash stolen from him at least twice because he left it sitting on the seat of his pick up truck in the parking lot of the local strip bar that he frequents. Also, he has been asked, with no deference to his wealth, to leave said strip bar on numerous occasions because he apparently is one of those people who become obnoxious after imbibing a large quantity of alcohol.

When I was awarded custody of my daughter, who was raised by her mother on welfare, in true poverty, She had a bitter attitude against "rich people" and often spoke sneeringly about the "preppies" that lived in her town. I supposed there is some snobbery in the children of people who have worked long and hard for wealth. After all, their kids didn't have to work for privileges that my daughter could only wish to have.

I had the same attitude growing up among peers, who were mostly children of high ranking executives in my hometown of Wichita, Kansas. One was the son of a local real estate mogul. One was the daughter of the President of a large chemical corporation. One was the daughter of a Vice President of Boeing Aircraft. They didn't have to wonder if they had enough money to pay bills, or even to eat, week to week.

There were others.

If I could have looked past the fact that they were "rich" and I wasn't, I would have seen them for who they really were: Good decent people who had no comprehension of what true poverty is really like. They were, for all practical purposes, clueless.

It was when I realized they were naive, but not evil, that I was able to overcome class envy. After that, it was just a matter of reminding myself constantly, that the wealthy are no better or smarter than I.

OK. So now I am still poor. But I don't resent those that aren't. I don't idolize them either.

Saturday, September 24, 2005

God is in Control

Between ER listing all of Bill Clinton's positive accomplishments during his administration, and the Able Danger fiasco, in which both Republicans and Democrats seem to be engaged in cover up, and the President firing back at Clinton, which blew my previous argument about his integrity out of the water, I have decided to take a step back from politics and re-evaluate my position on some issues.

I will say this, though, which is something I've been thinking about long before I posted my comments about Clinton's legacy:

If someone had not broken the story about Monica Lewinsky and Bill Clinton's affair, there would have been no scandal. There would have been no investigation. There would have been no need for Clinton to lie. There would have been no need for an impeachment hearing.

I, and most every other conservative have made a mountain out of a molehill about this case and have done precisely what we criticize the Liberals of doing. Sensationalizing a minor flaw in a President. Making it seem worse than it is, so to speak.

Yes, He cheated on his wife. Yes, he was weak and used bad judgment. Yes, he lied about the whole thing. Yes, and when it became obvious that he was caught in the lie, he went into defense mode, and launched a counter attack, going after Ken Starr and others, and alledgedly ordering the IRS to do impromptu audits of his perceived enemies.

As I have said, How different things might have been if he had simply called a press conference, and said,

"Yes, I did have sex with that woman, Ms. Lewinsky. I was wrong. I broke the covenant I have with my wife and with the American people. There is no excuse for my reprehensible behavior. I am sorry. I have discussed this with the First Lady, and I have apologized to her and I have promised to never do it again, and she has been gracious enough to forgive me, although no one would blame her if she didn't. I certainly wouldn't. And now, I feel it is my obligation to you, the American people, to offer my sincerest and most humble apology. I promise I will not do it again. That is the end of this matter and I will discuss it no further and I will not seek revenge against those who have brought this matter to the attention of the American people."

Don't get me wrong. I still don't think he was a very good president. I still think he was corrupt. But that is not the issue I am addressing here today.

Now. During this time of natural disaster following on the heels of natural disaster, and the continually depressing news about the war in Iraq, and the uncertainty of the future of the World and the United States,. I think it is important to remember Who is really in control. Where there seems to be no hope, there is Hope. Here are the words to a song recorded by Twila Paris:

This is no time for fear
This is a time for faith and determination
Don't lose the vision here
Carried away by emotion
Hold on to all that you hide in your heart
There is one thing that has always been true
It holds the world together

God is in control
We believe that His children will not be forsaken
God is in control
We will choose to remember and never be shaken
There is no power above or beside Him, we know
God is in control, oh God is in control

History marches on
There is a bottom line drawn across the ages
Culture can make its plan
Oh, but the line never changes
No matter how the deception may fly
There is one thing that has always been true
It will be true forever

God is in control
We believe that His children will not be forsaken
God is in control
We will choose to remember and never be shaken
There is no power above or beside Him, we know
God is in control, oh God is in control

He has never let you down
Why start to worry now?
He is still the Lord of all we see
And He is still the loving Father
Watching over you and me

watching over you...watching over me..
watching over every thing..
watching over you..watching over me..
every little sparrow..every little thing...Oh

God is in control
We believe that His children will not be forsaken
God is in control
We will choose to remember and never be shaken
There is no power above or beside Him, we know
God is in control, oh God is in control.

I feel better already.

Friday, September 23, 2005

A Father's Story

Yesterday, on the Laura Ingraham show, a father of a marine who was killed in action and a mother of a another soldier killed were interviewed.

The father, Gary Qualls, read a letter which was the last letter he had received from his son, Lance Corporal Louis Qualls, before he was killed in action on November 16, 2004 in Fallujah, Iraq. It can be found here, along with a letter to his brother and letters of condolence from Texas state legislators.
This is the letter, in it's entirety:


Dear Dad,

Well I saw this post card at the PX and when
I read it, it summed up all my feelings and my
thoughts at the moment so I only thought it
appropriate to get it for you. Well there's a
lot going on here. They say that the next
month will probably be some of the most
serious combat that the war has yet to see,
and well I'm right in the middle of it. I think
I'm truly scared, because not just knowing
I'm going to be in a fight, but I fear it's a fight
for my life. So Dad I need your prayers and
your advice more than ever. I know you've
always been there for me, and I know you
always will be. I just can't wait to come home.
I just want you to know that no matter what
happens in the next weeks that I've always
looked up to you and I always will.

You know kids idol some football player or
something along those lines but me I've
always idol'd and looked up to you, and I
always thought damn I can only dream of
doing the things you've done. Well I love you
and I'll be home soon. Well lookin' forward to
hearin' from ya'll soon and tell Cathe thanx
for the emails.

Your Son,

My son is 16. Mr. Qualls said in the interview that his son signed up for the marines when he was only 17. He said he had finished reading the letter from his son less than a hour before the uniformed men stood outside his door, flanking a chaplain. He said all he could do was repeat the words, "No, No, No", over and over.

I don't think I would want my son to join the armed services, but if he wanted to, I wouldn't stop him. When a young man is 17 he cannot join without his parent's permission. If my son insisted on me giving my permission, I am not sure I would want to give it. However, During these times when we are engaged in a war against terror, I could only assume the reason he may want to join would be a noble one. Why else would he want to risk his life?

A few years ago, my daughter, Crystal Star, who was only 21 at the time, but living with an abusive boyfriend, called one night and asked me to take her to the hospital because she was sick. I went over to her place to pick her up but I didn't take her to the hospital right away, until my wife, her stepmother insisted that she really was sick and I should take her.

It was only after the hospital had admitted her that I found out she had taken 85 extra-strength Tylenol and her liver was shutting down as a result. She had been despondent over a fight her and her boyfriend had. The doctors told us she was dying. Also, she had admitted to the doctors that she had a cocaine addiction, which disqualified her for a transplant.

Seemingly, the only thing we could do is watch her die.

Words cannot begin to describe the pain I felt when the reality of the situation sunk in. Children are not supposed to die before their parents.

I am a proud and largely unemotional man, but for the first time in many years, I cried.

And prayed.

Here are pictures of my daughter and her family today. (not the same guy she was with at the time)

After hovering on the brink of death for a week, Crystal pulled through, by the grace of God, but the memory of that horror will stay with me the rest of my life.

I don't want my children to die before I do. Gary Qualls did not want his child to die before him. Cindy Sheehan did not want her child to die before her.

I cannot imagine the pain they must feel, although I had a taste of it the day my daughter took those pills.

All in all, I think if my child were to die before I do, I can only hope he dies fighting for our freedom.

And for Cindy Sheehan's right to protest his service.

Thursday, September 22, 2005


I don't own a video tape player/recorder. I own a cheap DVD player that I bought from Walmart for about $59.00 a couple of years ago. I've been lucky. So far, except for the fact that it will not open and close by remote control and that I can't fast forward it anymore, it still works good.

I don't own a lot of DVD's either. I have a few, but generally, when I want to view a film, I rent one. I have found that most movies, even the good ones, are only worth 2 -3 viewings, and then they just sit and gather dust.

The only DVD's I own are ones that I like so much that I will watch them over and over and that aint very durn many. And ones that I seem to get a hankerin' to see occassionally and are never on television. Some of those are:

"The Dream Team", with Michael Keaton, Peter Boyle, Christopher Lloyd, and Steven Furst.

"Her Alibi" with Tom Selleck and Paula Porizkova.

"Plan 9 from Outer Space" An Ed Wood classic.

Then I have my most favorite movies:

"Oh Brother, Where Art Thou?"

"Cyrano de Bergerac" (the 1950 version with the Academy Award winning performance of Jose Ferrer)

I want to get "Evolution" with David Duchovny and Julianne Moore but I can't find it for sale anywhere. Except and I don't like buying things over the internet, but I probably eventually will.

I would own anything by the Cohen brothers, too, but just haven't got anymore of those yet.

I have "Super Size Me", the liberal propaganda film by that guy that ate nothing but McDonalds food for 30 days, getting a little fat in the process. And sick (the wussy)But I didn't buy it for myself. My 21 year old college student son back in Wichita sent it to me for Christmas. He said the last time he saw me I was fat and he thought it would inspire me to lose weight.

It inspired me to go out and get a Big Mac.

So it goes.

On a whim one day I bought a DVD of "Murders in The Rue Morgue" starring, of all people, Val Kilmer, and believe it or not, George C Scott. What can I say? I like Poe. It doesn't stick very close to the text and that has always been a difficult thing for me to adjust to in movies.

I don't like DVD collections of television series' as a rule but I really love my 2 disc, 8 episode edition of the "Andy Griffith Show". I especially like the ones featuring the Darling family, played by the real life bluegrass band, the Dillards, as the family and Denver Pyle as Mr. Darling. I saw the Dillards in concert once and they did a parody of the Darling family which was hilarious.

I'd like to see a collection of Andy Griffith shows featuring only those, with and without Ernest T. Bass (Howard Morris) and any episode where Barney isn't portrayed as an incompetent.

I've always kind of identified with poor ol' Barney. I never liked it when he was being a jackass. I liked to see him as a hero. Those episodes are rare.

That's it. I just thought I'd lighten up one day.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Bill Clinton's Legacy

To begin with, let me state for the record, that I can’t fault Clinton for having sex with Monica Lewinsky. He is after all, a man, with a typical man’s natural instincts. And I don’t care what the comedians and journalists say, Monica is an attractive woman. I don’t think she is fat at all, as they say.

I know that it is indeed hard to turn free sex with an attractive woman down, especially when said woman is throwing herself at you. Even if you are married. The temptation is daunting. Being a man, and a single man at that, I don’t know if I could resist such a tempting offer. But he should have been able to.

And in addition to that, it is generally recognized that important powerful men have, for the most part, an overactive libido, further complicating the matter. So I understand that it would be hard for Clinton to resist.

That said, we must also remember that this man was the most powerful man in the world at the time, and as such, had an obligation to eschew all appearances of impropriety. My concern was, at the time, that if the man cannot control his own sexual urges, how can he be trusted to control his emotions in a pressure situation such as the outbreak of war? If a nation with a death wish had launched an all out offensive against the United States, could a man with so little control over his own urges be up to the task?

I think we are fortunate that we never had to find out the hard way.

Lets look at what things Clinton did in his 8 year tenure as our nation’s leader that assured his place in history:

1. He gave missile technology to Communist China that would perfect the pinpoint accuracy of Nuclear missiles which would undoubtedly be used against the United States should Global thermo-nuclear war break out between us and them.

2. In 1994, Clinton brokered a one sided pact with North Korea, buying a promise from Kim il Sung with 500,000 tons of fuel oil annually and $4 billion to construct a pair of nuclear reactors for “electricity”, and, in exchange, North Korea promised not to build nuclear weapons.

As is now well-known, about six seconds after the deal was signed the North Koreans began feverishly building nuclear bombs. In October 2002, the regime admitted it had in fact been working on them since the mid or late 1990’s. But up until the North Koreans were caught red handed, the “experts” were assuring us that the 1994 peace deal had been a smashing success.

3. During the aforementioned Lewinsky scandal, he issued an edict declaring oral sex to not really be considered sex at all, insuring American 15-19 year old girls for generations to come that they can indiscriminately and promiscuously engage in oral sex, because if President Clinton says so, it must be fact.

So now, the percentage of underage girls in America routinely having oral sex has skyrocketed. Slightly more than half of American teenagers ages 15 to 19 have engaged in oral sex, with females and males reporting similar levels of experience, according to the most comprehensive national survey of sexual behaviors ever released by the federal government.
The report released September 15 by the National Center for Health Statistics shows that the proportion increases with age to about 70 percent of all 18- and 19-year-olds. That figure is considerably higher for those who also have engaged in intercourse.

Arguably, it can be said that the internet culture in America, as well as other factors, has contributed significantly to the rise in the percentage of teens engaging in oral sex, but I have personally heard teen age girls say it was Clinton that convinced them that oral sex wasn’t really sex. Basically, he has legitimized the practice. And yesterday, it was announced that the Chinese will be marketing condoms named after Clinton. They will be called "Clinton Condoms". They are also planning to market "Monica" brand condoms. So we know now what kind of legacy he has left the Chinese.

4. He lowered the bar for what constitutes “high crimes and misdemeanors”, in regards to what is an impeachable offense, relegating perjury before a grand jury to the status of a “little white lie“.

5. In 1998 Clinton bombed Iraq. Coincidently, It just happened to be on the day scheduled for his impeachment. I’m sure this wasn’t a “Wag the Dog” type thing. He wouldn’t try to distract America would he? Naw, probably just a coincidence.

6. He also bombed an aspirin factory in Khartoum, Sudan on the flawed intelligence information that it was a crucial link to Osama bin Laden.

This flawed information, by the way, is not considered as important a blunder as that which President Bush used to justify the invasion of Iraq, which resulted in the deposition of a murderous, sadistically tyrannical dictator, who was known to have used WMD in the past against his own people as well as Iran.

Of course, possibly the interruption of the aspirin trade in the Sudan made Osama have to resort to more primitive methods of soothing his headaches, so that is probably a good thing, too, but somewhat less effective than capturing him as we did with Saddam.

7. By his declaration that he had smoked pot before but hadn’t inhaled, he empowered at least two different and disparate groups - Pot smokers and conservative critics who considered the statement to be proof positive that he is a liar. Now, it’s not only OK to engage in oral sex out of wedlock, it’s also OK to abuse illegal drugs.

8. He had an opportunity to capture Osama bin Ladin but decided against it preferring to leave him to the Saudis. He reportedly said that bin Ladin had committed no crimes against America yet, and we had no basis with which to hold him. Consequently, 5 years later bin Ladin orchestrated the attacks on the WTC and the Pentagon that killed 3,000 non-combatant men, women, and children. As a side note to this, It has recently come to light that Mohammed Atta, the leader of the terrorists that piloted the planes into those buildings, was known to staffers in Clinton’s Whitehouse as a potential terrorist threat to America, but would not allow a full investigation.

(On a personal note, I think that if Atta had been detained and prevented from carrying out the attacks, another of bin Ladens soldiers would have taken his place, and the attacks likely would have come off as planned anyway.)

9. Then there was the matter of the Rose Law Firm documents that disappeared and then mysteriously reappeared (by a fortuitous coincidence that could only happen in bad novels) the day after the statute of limitations ran out on the investigation.

The untimely deaths of Ron Brown and Vince Foster. I don’t believe that Clinton had anything to do with those two deaths,( I have a hard time believing anyone could be that cold blooded, although there are some that would accuse Bush of being that, and more) but there exists some conspiracy theorists that do.

Now, personally, I think Clinton is a good man overall, but he got himself in some pretty sticky situations and instead of taking the bull by the tail and facing the situation with aplomb, he attempted to cover up his colossal blunders and by doing so, made things infinitely worse.

Thus did Clinton etch his name into the unforgiving stone tablets of history, but not in the way he had originally envisioned.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005


I came across this news story this morning. I think it illustrates perfectly what I've been saying all along.

"Thirty-six hours after ex-president Bill Clinton bashed and trashed his son on everything from his handling of the Hurricane Katrina crisis to the Iraq war, former president George H.W. Bush says he still likes Clinton.
Appearing during commercial breaks on ABC's "Monday Night Football," the president's father was asked how he and Clinton managed to get along.

"I like him," Bush 41 said, despite the verbal thrashing Clinton administered to his son on ABC's "This Week" the day before.

Given two more opportunities to comment on his relationship with Clinton, Bush Sr. declined to say a single negative word about his successor.

Mr. Clinton, on the other hand, demonstrated no such graciousness when asked on Sunday about the Bush administration's response to Hurricane Katrina."

Both Bush 41 and his son have integrity.

Clinton bashes Bush. Kerry bashes Bush. Former President Carter bashes Bush.

"Given two more opportunities to comment on his relationship with Clinton, Bush Sr. declined to say a single negative word about his successor."

See the difference?

Do you think maybe the 2 Bushes don't have reason to bash Clinton? Has Clinton always conducted himself with decorum and grace? How about Kerry?

Remember the 2004 Presidential campaign? Who was slinging the mud and who was talking about the issues?

Think hard.

When the 527 groups were squabbling with each other, Kerry went right along with the accusations that Bush had gone AWOL from the national guard during Vietnam.

Bush praised Kerry's service in Vietnam and thanked him for his service, while publicly rebuking the very 527 groups that were attacking Kerry on his behalf.

See the difference?

Now George W. Bush has twice enlisted the aid of Bill Clinton to help with recovery efforts in the wake of the Tsunami and hurricane Katrina, without having to remind the world that Clinton committed perjury while in office, which was an impeachable offense.

No, Bush has had nothing to say about Clinton that isn't positive.

What a stark contrast! Do you know what the real difference is?

What is it called when someone steadfastly refuses to bash the ones who bash him out of respect and courtesy?

It's called integrity.

Monday, September 19, 2005

A Moral Dilemma

Before I discuss today's topic, I first want to acknowledge Pastor Timothy. I just recently discovered his blog, and I was impressed. When y'all are done reading this you might want to cruise on over to his place and see what he has to say. I read some of his posts and found one in which he discusses his objection to those church signs with silly, trite messages on them.

Here is a gift from me to you, Pastor. Forgive me.

Today's post:

The last few weeks have been difficult for me and my son. Financially, I mean.

I make a pretty good income overall, but I am an independent contractor and I drive for a living, which means I pay my own expenses. And with the gas prices shooting up like Roman Candles lately, my expenses have gone up significantly. To go along with that, just when it was time to get my son school supplies and school clothes, I had unexpected car trouble that costs me almost 300 dollars itself.

This past paycheck was a day short because I didn't work Labor day and when I don't work, I don't get paid.

Needless to say, for one who lives pretty much paycheck to paycheck, my budget has become very strained. My rent is late and so is my car payment.

Now that you know something of my predicament, You may appreciate the unique dilemma I had to deal with over the weekend.

Saturday, I took my dog, Beast, for a walk. I first walked him over to the post office and checked my mail. (We don't have mailboxes at the house, we have to go to the post office for it) Then, I needed some cash for the Laundromat and for my son's school lunches, so I walked on over to the building next to the post office, which happens to be the bank in which I have an account.

The bank has a drive up ATM, and as I approached on foot, a car was just pulling away, the driver having just made a transaction. At first, I didn't understand why the screen on the ATM had the message, "Would you like to make another transaction?"

And then I realized that the driver who had just left had left his ATM card in the machine. I looked, and he was nowhere in sight. I had walked up to the machine so my face was high enough over the video camera, that I knew I couldn't be identified if I decided to make "another transaction". The bank was closed.

No one was around.

Suddenly I realized that I could possibly solve my current money problems, at least I could withdraw enough to pay my rent.

I pressed the "yes" button.

I was offered choices. Withdrawal, Deposit, Money Transfer, etc.

At this moment a wave of uncertainty swept over me. If I hit that withdrawal button, there was little chance, if any, that I would ever get caught. I looked all around. A sweat broke out on my brow. I was suddenly aware that I was shaking. My mouth was dry.

I hesitated. A million thoughts flashed through my mind. Should I or shouldn't I? Would it place a hardship on the true owners of the money? Would they even miss the money? Maybe they were wealthy. Maybe they weren't.

I was facing a moral dilemma. I know there are those who are reading this who would say, "How could you even consider that? An honest person wouldn't think twice. They would absolutely not touch that money."

There may be those who are reading this who would say, "Take the money. No one will ever know and besides, it's their own fault for being irresponsible."

What do you think I did? What would you do?

Admittedly reluctant, I forced myself to press the cancel button and removed the card, without withdrawing any cash. Then I inserted my own ATM card and withdrew 20 bucks for myself. From MY account.

I went home and told my son what happened. He asked me, "Why didn't you take some money if no one would have known?"

I replied, "Because I would know."

And so would God.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Why Blog?

Sometimes I tend to forget why I created a weblog in the first place. I think sometimes I start considering what kinds of subjects will get the most reaction from the readers. What will get my blog, among the thousands of blogs out there, the most readers? Not the most readers of any blog. The most readers of mine.

And that's another thing.

How important to me is it that I even have readers? The answer to that is -- very important. But that goes to why I started blogging. Here is a short explanation behind the reason I started blogging:

I am a very opinionated guy. As if you didn't know that. I foolishly think my opinion matters. Call me an egotist. I've been called worse.

My father was fond of saying, "This might come as a surprise to you, but nobody really cares what you think." As ego deflating as that is, he was probably right.

But I work alone with no one but myself for company and no one to share my opinions with, and when I hear something on the radio or on TV that I have an opinion about, I want to tell someone. Originally, my intent was to say something about things I heard in the news that make me say, "What the....?". So blogging is a perfect forum. I want people to know what I think. My ex-wife hated hearing my opinions. She had this to say about all my opinions:

"Shut up!"

That may be one reason her and I aren't married anymore.

Probably many are like me and just wanted a forum to voice their opinion. But I have read others that are like short stories, others that are diary's. Why would someone want to share with the world their personal diary's? Remember when diaries were secret?

Now, I am curious. Why have others started blogging? Why have you? Answer me in comments.

And no, this isn't a poorly disguised effort to get a long thread of comments. I really want to know.

Note: I just got a pop up that said I am the 1,000,000th visitor to my site. I feel honored. And just yesterday I had only had 20,000+ visits to my site.

Saturday, September 17, 2005

Fiscal Responsibility

There have been reports that some of the $2,000.00 debit cards that FEMA handed out to the survivors of Hurricane Katrina have been used to buy designer clothes, Louie Viutton handbags, and even spent at some Houston strip clubs.

So some of the survivors are irresponsible with money. Who knew?

I can identify with that. I am irresponsible with money. Not as much as I used to be, but I still make stupid decisions on how to spend my money at times. I think of all the ways I can waste money if I were to win a lottery or something and the possibilities are endless. And, interestingly enough, I always consider those plans first. I would like to think I am a good steward of the gifts God gives me but I think He knows me better than I know myself, and that is probably why I never win a lottery.

Fiscal irresponsibility is one reason why some of them are poor in the first place. Not all, but some.

This news makes the point to us that government welfare programs do not work. You can give and give and give, and some people will take and take and take.

And remain poor.

Now, if the government (that means you and I) wants to institute programs that make some effort to teach fiscal responsibility along with the welfare checks, or hold the recipients accountable for what they do with the money, that is something I can get behind. How they can do that without going overboard in the typical governmental method of overkill, is quite another problem.

I think this idea bears further study.


In my last posting, I mentioned a life changing experience I had, and promised I would give details on another post. I suppose this would be as good a time as any.

Unlike almost everyone I know, I don't recall the exact day of my conversion, but it was in the late summer of my 21st year.

I was fully involved in the drug culture by this time, and had taken to hanging out at a downtown park by the river side with many other druggie friends (I use the term "friends" loosely). I would spend nearly every night there until the early hours of the morning, or until we were "asked" to leave by the police.

We spent our evenings sitting on the ground in small groups sampling the various types of illegal drugs. I was addicted, at least psychologically, to amphetamines, commonly referred to as "speed". So, when Rich Bachelor calls me a freak, he is half right. I was a speed freak. Now, I suppose I could be called a Jesus freak by some, although I am not really that devout, as I should be.

I had also done a little dealing, but it wasn't for the money. It was to help others enjoy the same euphoria I did. Once, I sold a guy, whom I only knew as "Pepper", a fist full of red capsules cheap. I made no profit.

Later, he and another guy, whom I didn't know but knew of, nicknamed "Fast Eddie", Tied another acquaintance of mine to a chair and injected him with enough barbituates to kill a horse.

They killed him. Literally. On purpose.

The killed him because they suspected him of being a narcotics informer, or "narc". He wasn't.

The acquaintance Fast Eddie and Pepper killed was nicknamed "Lucky".


Okay, I told you all that to illustrate how far I had plunged into the maelstrom. And I was still living with my parents at the time! My father was an ordained minister, though he wasn't a pastor, just a Sunday school teacher at the time, but he had pastored before and would again eventually. My mother was the associational director of the Girl's auxiliary. We were a very church oriented family. My parents made me go to church reguarly no matter how I fought them.

My one tenuous connection with reality.

I was sufficiently independent by now, so I had managed to distance myself from my family and their church while attempting to fool my Christian peers into thinking I was one of them.

I lived a double life! Forgive me the exclamation point, but I just now realized that fact.

My parents, specifically, my mother, talked me into attending services at a city wide revival meeting, known as a "Crusade". The evangelist conducting the revival was Rev. James Robison. Here is a picture of him and his wife, Betty.

He has a syndicated program on Christian TV stations now.

All that week I had attended, but paid no attention to the sermons preached. I watched hundreds of people make personal decisions of conversion and rededication. It had no effect on me.

Until the last night. I remember I was sitting a few rows behind and to the left of my brother, the same one who had introduced me to drugs. The meeting was taking place in Lawrence-Dumont Stadium, where the National Baseball Congress had their annual tournament. We were outdoors.

Sometime during Rev. Robison's message that night, an ambulance went screaming by on the street outside the stadium. It interrupted Robison's discourse. Then he said the only sentence I heard that night up until then:

"Whenever I hear an ambulance siren, I wonder if some poor soul is slipping off into eternity without Jesus."

That one statement hit me like a ton of bricks. I don't know why. Call it divine intervention. To this day, when I hear an ambulance, I wonder the same thing.

That was when I was converted. The stepping out of my seat, walking down the steps to stand in front of the podium when the sermon was over and the invitation had begun, and reciting of "the sinners prayer" were merely formalities. I was convicted, converted, and forgiven by that one statement.

I have, at many times since then, regressed back to a depraved lifestyle, and as many times, upon confession, He has forgiven me.

"But I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I've committed unto him against that day."

Although I'm not religious, I am still a Christian.

Friday, September 16, 2005

What a Long, Strange Trip It's Been

Two days ago, I created a post that consisted mainly of quotes that I had gathered from some Liberal blogs.

I quoted one of the posts which started a short discussion about hallucinogenic drugs, mainly LSD. I stated my opinion that regular use of LSD caused insanity. One might argue that I don't know what I'm talking about, and since I want to lighten up after some contentious comments left on my blog by myself and others, as well as on other blogs, I decided to discuss my own personal experience with illegal mind altering drugs.

35 years ago, I was introduced to drugs for the first time by my brother, who was in the Air Force stationed at George AFB near Victorville California. He had come home to Wichita on leave, and had brought a civilian friend of his with him.

The friends name was Larry.

My brother introduced me to Marijuana, and I liked it.

Larry invited me to ride with him back to his home in North Hollywood, California. His intention was to go home, pack up his belongings and move to my home town of Wichita, Kansas because he thought the girls in Wichita were pretty.

In retrospect, that should have sent up a red flag right there. No one in their right mind would pull up stakes and move all the way across the country on a whim.

As it happened, he wasn't in his right mind, and probably hadn't been for quite some time.

I traveled back to California with him to help him pack and move, and on the way out, we picked up a hitchhiker from Ohio named Steve. Larry convinced Steve to stay with us, and the three of us smoked pot all the way to California.

Fast forward to a while later. We were staying in Larry's 2nd floor apartment with an unemployed Larry and his two kittens. None of us had any money. We subsisted on a diet of Twinkies and Kool-Aid, which we bought with the money we earned panhandling on the streets of North Hollywood. Much about the time I spent there is unclear, due to the fact that I was continually high. Somewhere in the three weeks that I was there, Larry gave up on the notion of moving to Wichita. Steve and I were more or less stranded in L.A.

Sometime during our stay, Steve and I decided to hitchhike to San Diego. We had some difficulty getting a ride and gave up after a few hours not getting very far. So we turned back, and succeeded getting a ride back to North Hollywood with a couple of "hippies". During the ride back, we were intimidated into dropping a tab of LSD each. We were told it was a 4-way tab of Orange Sunshine. The hippie that gave it to us watched us to make sure we really took it, saying, "Chew it up, man, I wanna see you chew it up." Those words and his face are forever etched into my memory.

Shortly thereafter, I became aware that what appeared to be a mist was enveloping the world. All lights took on an unnatural extremely bright glow. I began to experience "trails". It suddenly occurs to me that I cannot explain what trails are. You would have to experience them I guess.

I don't recall how we got back to Larry's apartment, but we made it. Upon learning that Steve and I had dropped acid, Larry took some himself.(he had quite a large stash of it in his refrigerator. No food, but plenty of drugs.)

The rest of the evening is understandably fuzzy to me, and no wonder! I had taken a 4-way dose of a very powerful hallucinogen.

At one point, I remember going into the bathroom and attempting to urinate. To this day, I don't know if I actually did urinate or if I imagined I did.

At another point I watched music issuing from the stereo speakers. That's right, I said "watched", not listened. The music was dark purple, and it drifted around in the air of the room in large shapeless masses.

Another time I was laying on the shag carpeted floor, casually petting one of Larry's kittens. I looked down at the animal and I saw it's head lolling back with it's throat torn open. Blood covered everything. I remember saying, "Oh, s**t!"

Steve said, laughing, "What's the matter?"

"I killed Larry's cat."

"You what?"

"I killed ...." I reached down to push the bloody carcass away from me.

The cat got up and walked away. I had imagined it was dead. There was nothing wrong with it at all. "Nevermind." I said.

Later, I imagined an old scar on my foot had opened up and started bleeding profusely. It hadn't.

A few minutes later, or it could have been hours, I don't know, (You have no sense of time when you are on LSD.) I SAW the Heebie Jeebies. Would you like to know what Heebie Jeebies look like?

They are tiny little men about 1 inch high. They are all different colors, the colors of the rainbow.

Red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet.

They form a virtual wall, by standing on each others shoulders and holding hands. Hundreds of them, taking up a space approximately 2 feet wide and 1 foot high.

Then they jump up and down in unison, chanting, "Heebie Jeebie, Heebie Jeebie", over and over.

The "trip" lasted a total of 24 hours straight. There was a side effect of the particular tab that I had taken. It had been "cut" with amphetamines. I didn't care for the acid trip, but I liked the amphetamines. I wanted more and Larry was happy to accommodate.

Larry was prone to sudden fits of rage, and eventually I felt It was not safe to be around him anymore. LSD use had driven him quite insane. So, after just three weeks in North Hollywood, I hitchhiked back home after first stopping in San Diego to visit 2 girls I knew who lived there, that I had met previously back in Wichita.

That was a memorable night. No memory loss there!

I stayed on amphetamines for the next 2 years, with very few moments when I wasn't high.

After I came back home to Wichita, I experimented with various other kinds of drugs, Mushrooms, Peyote, Mescaline, THC, even smoked crack once, but I didn't know how to do it right and I didn't have the needed paraphanalia to do it right, and I didn't get high.

I never did cocaine or heroin.

I took LSD only once more after that, a single hit of pink microdot. It was mild compared to the Orange Sunshine. The only thing scary about that trip was that I was trying to drive at the time, down a street that ran alongside the Big Arkansas River.
The street seemed to want to lead me into the river but fortunately, I had presence of mind enough to know that was illogical, so I just stayed between the lines and the street magically straightened out ahead of me as I drove.

If you ever take LSD, I recommend you don't attempt to drive under it's influence.

Actually, this account doesn't read as funny as it sounds when I tell it to people in person.

I might have been addicted to amphetamines, I don't know, but I can say, with certainty, that I stopped all drug use when I recieved Christ as my Savior at a city wide evangelistic crusade presented by Rev. James Robinson. But that's another post.

That's it. Back to serious blogging tomorrow.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

One Nation, Under What?

Well, here we go again.

U.S. District Judge Lawrence Karlton ruled that the pledge of allegiance reference to one nation "under God" violates school children's right to be "free from a coercive requirement to affirm God."

I don't understand what these people feel they are gaining by seeking to limit the rights of everyone else to pledge, or not pledge allegiance to the flag.

See? That's what this thing is all about. It has nothing to do with coercing children to say words indicating a belief in a supreme being. All people already have the right to refuse to stand, refuse to pledge allegiance, and refuse to say the words, "under God".

The only purpose I can see to bringing this issue before the court is to take our rights away from us. Those two families that sued to have the reciting of the pledge declared unconstitutional have not given themselves any more freedom than they already have under the law.

This was not a matter of personal liberties. It was a matter of making a political statement. Sacramento atheist attorney Michael Newdow wants to legitimize his agenda of removing all mention of God, or religion from our culture.

Nothing more.

It won't work. Atheists throughout history have sought to eliminate religion and failed. Men much more intelligent and influential (in relation to their time and place) than he.

A 19th century atheist ( I forgot his name )in France once attempted to eliminate the Bible. Completely. He said his goal was to eradicate Christianity forever.

Now, after his death, his house is being used as a publishing company. What do you think they publish exclusively?

The Bible.

Senator Lindsay Graham, on the Sean Hannity show today, said, with certainty, that the ruling made by the court would be overturned, that the 9th District court has a history of those types of rulings and they are constantly being overturned.

We'll see.

This may be the one of the first cases in which Justice Roberts, should he be confirmed, may have to rule. It will be interesting to see how he responds to the challenge.

From the Donkey's Mouth

Or: Examples of the Lunatic Left.

My son was staying with friends most of the weekend and I had nothing whatsoever to do, so after I finished checking all the blogs on my blogroll (several times each), I hit the little “next blog” button at the upper right of the page, and discovered some real Liberal “diamonds in the rough”.( I left the misspellings in)

I found this gem at Democratic Underground:

“In the wake of the hurricane, most black and white Americans saw themselves as on the same side, despite the GOP and their PR flaks attempts to create a racial divide and portray the survivors as savage looters and snipers.”

The GOP attempts to create a racial divide ???? I didn’t know Democrat was spelled G.O.P! And, Duh! There was looting and sniping going on, but the only one's that were implying that ALL the survivors were doing that were the Liberals!

Rich Bachelor, a frequent commentor on my blog, made this ridiculous statement about the terrorists attacks on America on 9/11/2001:

“I knew in my bones on that day that the unthinkable but hardly impossible had happened: an unpopular president largely considered to be elected only by judicial coup had done played the only card he had: the Wag The Dog scenario. And he hadn't even been subtle enough to do it right. On that day, Americans killed Americans, this I feel for certain…”

This from Seven Crows:

“It occurred to me last night that Bush was like Nero - playing while a city died. And then this morning I see this picture of Bush playing a guitar yesterday after his visit to Naval Base Coronado. Could it get anymore obvious that this man cares about nothing but his own pleasure? and that the word decorum is not in his vocabulary. Bush Fiddles while New Orleans drowns”

And I suppose that this writer has spent every moment since the hurricane knee deep in brackish water recovering bodies. Or do you suppose he did some things pertaining to his own obligations? Hmmmm, what was it Jesus said about removing the plank from your own eye before worrying about the mote in your brother’s?

From Appledorf:

"Right-wing ideologues, having destroyed Iraq with their experiment in "democracy" and having destroyed New Orleans with their 'small government' experiment in hurricane preparedness, evacuation, and relief, are now poised to destroy the traumatized survivors of Katrina's children's chances experimenting with vouchers and other privatization idiocies.

Only an electoral hurricane in 2006 that sweeps every right-wing nut from the halls of Congress will save this nation from total devastation."

"I find it fascinating that right-wing ideologues believe that evolution is "just a theory", but a basic tenet of the 'culture of life' is that if you can not afford to pay your own way, you are not fit to survive."

And: "Rich people and corporations need as much money as they can possibly get, so they shouldn't pay any taxes. And public money, like the Social Security trust fund (with which there was NO problem before it was looted and replaced with IOU's), is meant to be collected from workers and given as subsidies to the rich."

One more: "In my neighborhood everybody knows that global capitalists and their BushCo puppets do not care who lives and dies."

What neighborhood is that? Fantasyland?

Oh, This is really a good one. First, this guy (he claims to be a best selling author and screen writer, but I never heard of him) at Darkush says:

“I would love a non-politicized view of what this means, considering that this is the third strong suggestion I've seen (and I haven't really been searching) that the consequences of Katrina should have been understood at the local, state, and Federal levels. Because lives are at stake here, please keep the conversation polite.”

Then, he says: “For both Liberals and Conservatives: if Clinton had been in office under similar conditions, how would you feel, knowing that this information was running around? Personally, I would have been DEEPLY disappointed, and feel that a vital ball had been dropped. That vital resources had been diverted for a questionable war, and that cronyism had weakened our national vision."

"There is no way in hell that, were the position reversed, Republicans would not SHRED Clinton for gross neglegence. On vacation? Jeeze, they implied that Clinton's sexual dalliances, which, in toto, could not possibly add up to more than 24 hours of his time, had distracted him from his duties. What in the hell would be made of THIS?”

Note: Seems to me that Mr. Steve Barnes has an odd idea of what a “non-politicized view” is.

There is just so much lunacy in this blog, you just have to go read it yourself, if you can get through it without vomiting, including the obligatory comparison to the Nazi’s:

“I don't know about you but this sounds an awful lot like Hitler's Germany.”

I realize that some of these comments don't seem crazy to many of my readers, but the things they say about conservatives certainly don't represent me, and I am conservative. I left out a lot of my own commentary because I feel the lunacy pretty well speak for itself.

Another thing I read said Halliburton has been awarded the contract to do the clean up after hurricane Katrina. I don’t know if this is accurate or not, But if it is…Well, I don’t have anything against Halliburton, but if the Bush Administration wants to cause even more dissension they couldn’t come up with a better plan.

Note to whoever awards contracts in the Bush administration: Give someone else the contract if for no other reason than to avoid giving the Democrats any more ammo.

And here's Laura Ingraham's contribution to this issue:

Lie Of The Day:
"[Gasoline prices] are ridiculous. I had to take out a loan to fill up my minivan. It's crazy," claimed Katie Couric.

Katie, you make $15 million dollars a year!

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

A Government of the People

Listening to the Laura Ingraham program, I heard a sound bite from someone who shall remain nameless, because who said it is not the point.

What was said was “the Government” is responsible for helping the victims in national emergencies such as Hurricane Katrina.

I agree. This is true.

So while Mayor Nagin debated with himself about whether he had the authority to use the school and the metropolitan buses to evacuate the people of New Orleans before they were flooded, and whether it was even legal to do so, thousands of American people were already coordinating emergency relief efforts.

While Governor Blanco was considering the possibility that the Federal Government might declare martial law and in so doing, step on her political toes, Americans all over the country were setting up disaster relief funds.

While FEMA director Michael Brown was waiting for permission from the governor of Louisiana to move in and take over rescue efforts, faith based organizations were already on their way to New Orleans with truckloads of supplies and volunteer workers.

While Some Democrat leaders were examining the timetable of the storm to see if they could find something to blame President Bush for, ordinary American citizens set up the “blog for relief weekend” to collect charitable contributions to send to the victims of Hurricane Katrina.

While Red Cross workers were prevented from delivering emergency relief supplies by representatives of the State of Louisiana’s Department of Homeland security because they were afraid more hurricane victims would come to the Superdome requesting assistance instead of leaving, American people were boating through the flooded streets of New Orleans searching for survivors and distributing food and water.

While President Bush was conferring with his advisors about God knows what and, in so doing, delayed any action by about a full day, ordinary Americans were stuffing donation boxes at retail stores all over the country to help the survivors of the disaster.

While some Senators and Congressmen were busy blaming Bush for several things, including causing the hurricane and hating poor black people, individual Americans, black, white, and brown, were donating blood and living space for the displaced victims of Hurricane Katrina. Some even furnished entire homes.

While Mary Landrieu, on Fox News Sunday was making excuses, ordinary Americans were offering the displaced people of New Orleans jobs to help them get back on their feet.

Yes, the Government is indeed responsible for helping the victims of national disasters.

Thank God the people of the United States don’t wait for the government to act before they do.

Monday, September 12, 2005

Ill Wind May not Blow to the Whitehouse

While cruising around the blogosphere this weekend, I came across this blog, which is usually about Northern Ireland politics, but this post addresses the latest news in America. I think it is worth reprinting in full. It comes from this site here.

By Newton Emerson:

As the full horror of Hurricane Katrina sinks in, thousands of desperate columnists are asking if this is the end of George Bush's presidency. The answer is almost certainly yes, provided that every copy of the US Constitution was destroyed in the storm. Otherwise President Bush will remain in office until noon on January 20th, 2009, as required by the 20th Amendment, after which he is barred from seeking a third term anyway under the 22nd Amendment.

As the full horror of this sinks in, thousands of desperate columnists are asking if the entire political agenda of George Bush's second term will not still be damaged in some terribly satisfying way.
The answer is almost certainly yes, provided that the entire political agenda of George Bush's second term consists of repealing the 22nd Amendment. Otherwise, with a clear Republican majority in both Houses of Congress, he can carry on doing pretty much whatever he likes.

As the full horror of this sinks in, thousands of desperate columnists are asking if the Republican Party itself will now suffer a setback at the congressional mid-term elections next November.
The answer is almost certainly yes, provided that people outside the disaster zone punish their local representatives for events elsewhere a year previously, both beyond their control and outside their remit, while people inside the disaster zone reward their local representatives for an ongoing calamity they were supposed to prevent. Otherwise, the Democratic Party will suffer a setback at the next congressional election.

As the full horror of this sinks in, thousands of desperate columnists are asking if an official inquiry will shift the blame for poor planning and inadequate flood defences on to the White House. The answer is almost certainly yes, provided nobody admits that emergency planning is largely the responsibility of city and state agencies, and nobody notices that the main levee which broke was the only levee recently modernised with federal funds. Otherwise, an official inquiry will pin most of the blame on the notoriously corrupt and incompetent local governments of New Orleans and Louisiana.

As the full horror of this sinks in, thousands of desperate columnists are asking if George Bush contributed to the death toll by sending so many national guard units to Iraq.
The answer is almost certainly yes, provided nobody recalls that those same columnists have spent the past two years blaming George Bush for another death toll by not sending enough national guard units to Iraq. Otherwise, people might wonder why they have never previously read a single article advocating large-scale military redeployment during the Caribbean hurricane season.

As the full horror of this sinks in, thousands of desperate columnist are asking how a civilized city can descend into anarchy.
The answer is that only a civilised city can descend into anarchy.

As the full horror of this sinks in, thousands of desperate columnists are asking if George Bush should be held responsible for the terrible poverty in the southern states revealed by the flooding.
The answer is almost certainly yes, provided nobody holds Bill Clinton responsible for making Mississippi the poorest state in the union throughout his entire term as president, or for making Arkansas the second-poorest state in the union throughout his entire term as governor. Otherwise, people might suspect that it is a bit more complicated than that.

As the full horror of this sinks in, thousands of desperate columnists are asking if George Bush should not be concerned by accusations of racism against the federal government.
The answer is almost certainly yes, provided nobody remembers that Jesse Jackson once called New York "Hymietown" and everybody thinks Condoleezza Rice went shopping for shoes when the hurricane struck because she cannot stand black people.
Otherwise sensible Americans of all races will be more concerned by trite, cynical and dangerous political opportunism.

As the full horror of that sinks in, this columnist is simply glad that everybody cares.

Just a note from your humble friend and blogger: I am often surprised at how much people from other countries know about us and how little we know about them, and even about ourselves, in comparison. And how clearly they see through the political rhetoric and see only the facts.

I also find it interesting that spellcheck thinks the words "blog" and "blogger" are spelled wrong, but that's just me.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

9/11 Memories

I was working 2nd shift at that time, so I was sleeping when the call came on that Tuesday morning. The answering machine picked it up, because I was sleeping and I didn’t hear the phone ring.

Groggily, I slowly came to myself and I became aware of the sound of a juvenile voice issuing from the speaker of the answering machine. Then the voice stopped, followed by the unmistakable sound of the phone line being disconnected.

Although I had barely heard the voice, and was still half asleep to the point that I could make nothing of it, there was something about the tone of that voice that seemed strangely urgent and ominous. Even so, I checked the clock for the time. It was around 10:00. I don’t remember exactly. Then I rolled out of bed and stumbled to the bathroom, with a mental note to check the messages on the answering machine.

After attending to the obligatory morning ritual, I remember going to the window, and looking out to see what kind of day it was outside. Sunny, with little wind. A seemingly normal late summer day.

I opened the fridge, and grabbed a can of Diet Mountain Dew, and popped the top. I don’t drink coffee, so I get my morning caffeine buzz from Diet Mountain Dew.

So sue me.

As I sipped the drink, I reached over and punched the button on the playback feature of the answering machine.

“You have…one new message.”

The voice that had awakened me was that of the 12 year old boy who lived next door, my son’s best friend. He is black, his voice singularly recognizable by the typical African American accent. My first thought was, “why is he not in school?”

My son, who is the same age, was in school. The kid next door was an honor student but sometimes he just decided he didn’t want to go to school and his father didn’t seem to care if he stayed home.

That day, he was home.

His voice was urging the listener to turn on the television. He sounded somberly excited, if that is possible.

He said a plane had crashed into the World Trade center, in New York City.

I turned on the television. I didn’t have to search for the right channel. The news was on every channel. The images were shocking. I was stunned. A tower was on fire. The news commentator was saying a small plane had crashed into the tower. It was too early to know what exactly had happened, but it looked to me like something bigger than a small plane.

Then, as I watched, another plane struck the other tower.

No doubt now. America was under attack.

Time stood still.

How do I describe the remainder of my day? I cannot. I was in shock. I could not think. The only thing I remember was that I couldn’t cope with the reality of the situation. I merely went through the motions of my everyday life. The world was crumbling yet I still had to eat, conduct daily business, whatever it was, and later, go to work.

After a while, I turned the TV off. There was no further information other than the news that there were 2 more plane crashes, one into the Pentagon and one into a field in Pennsylvania. It was ascertained that the President was safe, but after that, there was little more to be learned as of yet.

This is what I do. I don’t linger too long during breaking news. I prefer to wait until all or most of the details are known and then I have the whole story. I hate being fed tidbits of information a little at a time. It is frustrating.

Outside, in Kansas City, it was a beautiful late summer day. There was a chill in the air, nevertheless, but it wasn’t a meteorological thing.

Later, I went to work, and I got all the gossip that I missed by not watching the news reports through the day. It was a surreal experience.

That is my remembrance of September 11, 2001.

I wrote a poem about it, but I am not a poet, so I will not present it here. It is woefully inadequate and sophomoric. Maybe I’ll start a new blog for bad poetry. I’ll start with some of Kanye West’s lyrics.

Here is what New Yorkers remember:

Click on the red and blue balloons.

Can't Cry Hard Enough

UPDATE: My blog has been featured as the "Blog of the week" over at I will forgive them for getting my first name wrong. Be sure you head on over there after you check out the moving tribute links on this site and give them your support.

Here and here are two more very good memories of 9/11/2001

Saturday, September 10, 2005

No More Mr. Nice Guy

In my last post I mentioned that I quit. That I lose, and the Liberals win. I am aware that my comments, borne out of frustration, may be taken out of context. I did not mean that I am not going to comment on what my opinion is regarding political ideology or what I consider to be unacceptable behavior and/or rhetoric from the Left.

Or the Right, for that matter.

Quite the contrary. I am more resolved than ever to continue the good fight in exposing Liberal lunacy. For those of you who were ecstatic that I may have given in, I’m sorry to disappoint you. I am merely stating that I have given up trying to convince those who disagree with me that I am right and they are wrong. Had I offered up documented proof positive that they are all 100% wrong on everything they say, They would not change their opinions.

Within such opinion breathes the soul of the American spirit.

But in spite of those who wish I would just shut up, I offer this explanation, in the words of Cyrano De Bergerac:

“What would you have me do? Seek for the patronage of some great man, and like a creeping vine on a tall tree, crawl up where I cannot stand alone?

No, thank you!

Be a buffoon in the vile hope of teasing out a smile on some cold face?

No, thank you!

Eat a toad for breakfast every morning? Make my knees calloused, cultivate a supple spine, wear out my belly groveling in the dust?

No, thank you!

With my left hand, scratch the back of any swine that roots up gold for me, while my right, too proud to know his partner’s business, takes in the fee?

No, thank you!

Shall I use the fire God gave me to burn incense all day long?

No, thank you!

Struggle to insinuate my name into the columns of the Gazette? Calculate? Scheme? Be afraid? Love more to make a visit than a poem? Seek introductions? Favors? Influences?

No, thank you! No, I thank you, and again, I thank you!

But to sing, to laugh, to dream. To walk in my own way. Free! With an eye to see things as they are. A voice that means manhood. To cut my hat where I choose. Not a word. A yes? A no? To fight….Or write. But never to make a line I have not heard in my own heart. To travel any road under the sun, under the stars. Nor care if fame or fortune lie beyond the borne. Yet, with all modesty to say, ‘My soul be satisfied with flowers. With weeds. With thorns, even.’ But gather them in the one garden you may call your own.

In a word, I’m too proud to be a parasite. And if my needs are like the germ that grows towering to heaven like the mountain pine, I stand not high, it may be, but alone.”

Bottom line is this: I am not going to worry anymore about offending people. As long as I am expressing an honest opinion and I am respectful, I would expect my friends to understand that. If they aren't my friends then I don't care.

But no pulling punches.