Monday, March 19, 2007

A Softening? Perhaps.

"We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them." - Albert Einstein

Profound? I think it is. A friend of mine sent this quote to me and it really hits home. It's kinda like the old insanity theory...doing the same thing over and over expecting a different result. And, who would be guilty of such a thing, you might ask? Would it be the folks on the right, who are so set in their ways they just keep plodding along, spewing the same old rhetoric, doing the same thing over and over? Or would it be the folks on the left, who are also so set in their ways they just keep plodding along, spewing their same old rhetoric, doing the same thing over and over? The answer, of course, is yes...and yes!

There is an old saying that politics are 'local', but I am beginning to believe that politics are 'loco', instead (doing the same thing over and over expecting a different result).

Many hundreds of years ago, it was commonly believed by the science community that the world was flat. That was the prevailing theory of the day. It was their theory, their idea, and they were sticking to it. Christopher Columbus was very lucky he didn't fall off the edge! Could have totally changed history, as we know it.

Today we have global warming. Thirty years ago we had global freezing. So who is right? President Bush is fighting the war on terrorism his way. The folks on the left just want to get out. So who is right?

Obviously, the mind-set that has carried us into four years of fighting in Iraq is flawed. We need a new, fresh set of ideas if we are to solve this very grave dilemma.

Just as obvious, the anti-war mantra to 'just bring our troops home', is equally flawed, but it is potentially much more dangerous.

If we do cut and run, will the terrorists consider that a victory and stop blowing up innocent people in Iraq, or will they become emboldened by our actions and escalate their jihad into this country. As comedian Ron White says, "Now that would be a valuable piece of information".

I honestly believe this: We don't really know who the true enemy is, but we had better be figuring it out, pronto. It is normal thinking to believe, if you are a Republican, that the Democrats are the enemy. And, if you are a Democrat, then the Republicans are the enemy. That seems to be the way it goes, especially if you pay any attention to the recent antics of our politicians inside the beltway. But, political adversaries need not be enemies. Bi-partisanship can be an invaluable asset in solving problems for this country. Differing view points can be productive. But somehow, the politicos seem to have sadly lost the ability get along. And we are the ones who are suffering for it.

The point is this: Since the beginning of mankind, there have been differing opinions. Differing schools of thought, if you will. But lately it has gotten completely out of hand. We are experiencing open hatred in the political ranks, and this is so wrong. The question is, what has caused this?

I think I have identified the real enemy, and it ain't us, and it ain't them. The real enemy is evil. Again, the real enemy is evil. Once more, the real enemy is evil. Evil! River City. P-O-O-L, and that spells pool! Our country, our culture, is embroiled in a spiritual warfare beyond anything we have seen in our lifetimes. The secular progressive movement in our land is a manifestation of this spiritual warfare, this evil, and it will destroy us unless we recognize it for what it is, and stop it in its tracks. The radical Muslim terrorists are also a manifestation of complete evil, hell-bent on our total destruction. Walk away? Quit? Please give this some serious thought before you advocate quiting.

Okay, you may ask, "Is Dougie changing his stripes?" No, I am every bit the conservative I have always been. I still view the liberal agenda as a precursor to socialism, and I find it every bit as lacking in reality as history has proven time and time again.

But, there is something changing in my heart. A softening? Perhaps. I still believe I am right in my political ideology with every fiber in my being, but I have also begun to believe that my old caustic, inflammatory approach to things has become counter-productive. The folks on the right loved it, for the most part, but in the process I alienated those on the left, and they didn't, for the most part.

So, I am going to try a new approach. One that will invite both sides to share their thoughts, their views, their ideas, without animosity.

Remember, we can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them. And it has become quite obvious that our elected officials aren't doing very much to help, on either side of the aisle.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Mr. Graham, Could I See Your Face ?

'In a field hospital about a mile behind the front lines on Christmas Eve, we went from bed to bed, bringing greetings and trying to encourage the wounded. One young man was so mangled that he lay face down on a canvas and steel contraption. A doctor whispered to me, "I doubt he'll ever walk again." "Mr. Graham, could I see your face?" asked the young man. We've all been praying for you and looking forward to your coming. I won't be able to be at the service." So I lay on the floor beneath him and looked up into his hollow eyes, still stunned with his fate. I prayed with him.
"Sir," said the young man to General Jenkins, who was escorting me, "I fought for you, but I've never seen you. Could I see your face?"
The general got down on all fours, slid under that bed as best he could, and talked with the young man. I saw a tear fall from the soldier onto the general's cheek.'

Iraq? Afghanistan? No, this took place in Korea in 1952. It is an excerpt from the autobiography of Billy Graham, entitled "Just As I Am".

Why am I sharing this short, incredibly graphic passage with you? Simply, and in plain English, because it jarred me. I had to put the book away until the tears stopped. I could not continue to read.

It occurred to me that nothing has really changed, and probably nothing ever will. Civilization, it seems, goes from war to war to war...! Soldiers die fighting for the 'cause'. History continues to repeat itself, and no one ever learns.

"Where have all the soldiers gone...long time passing...Where have all the soldiers gone...long time ago...Where have all the soldiers gone...they've gone to graveyards, everyone...when will they ever learn...when will they ever learn". (Pete Seeger)

Fast forward to March 2007. Our young people are still dying, still being maimed. And in my heart and soul, I must now wrestle with the questions that surfaced regarding Iraq as I read the above passage from Mr. Graham's book. Why do we do this? Is this a morally correct course we are on? Is there a better way? Is our freedom really worth the price our soldiers are paying every day?

I was born in 1938. I was a young child during World War II, but I can still vividly remember seeing the large headlines in the Cleveland Plain Dealer proclaiming "THE WAR IS OVER", or words to that effect. I was sitting at the kitchen table and almost tipped my chair over backwards with excitement. I remember the euphoria of family and neighbors. I can remember a few months later seeing my Uncle Harold, walking towards our house dressed in his sailor's uniform, duffle bag over his shoulder. Coming home. He was my hero, and I was so proud he was my uncle! We were a country united by a common cause.

Had we not had the resolve and the will to do what was necessary back then, we would not have the freedom and prosperity we enjoy today. For those of you too young to remember, you can take that to the bank. We were confronted with evil, we paid a horrible price to defeat it, but defeat it we did. Our country lost 11,000 soldiers the first DAY at Normandy. We lost tens upon tens of thousands more in the Pacific defeating Japan.

This, of course, is my frame of reference when I search for answers to those tough questions. I was born into a war that involved our own very sacred freedom and sovereignty. I was a student during Korea, and just past fighting age during Vietnam. Korea and Vietnam were political wars. They were about the proliferation of communism. Our sovereignty was not at stake. We were fighting to maintain freedom for a people who had not the means to do it for themselves. Was this a right thing to do? Should we have been there, or should we simply have let them be crushed by evil forces? There's a couple questions you can try to answer.

Today, we are fighting evil forces for our very existence, and, unlike our country of the 1940's, we are divided, and it is ugly. As horrible as war can be, as terrible as the consequences are for our young soldiers, can you imagine a future without freedom? Can you imagine leaving a legacy of evil, oppression and death for our children, and their children? Will there even be a 'next generation'? Are you willing to take the risk of 'just walking away'? Of surrender? This is truly gut-wrenching stuff!

I am afraid I do not have the answers. I wish I did. I will close with a quote that I have used many times before, but it always seems apropos:
"True peace is not the absence of war; it is the absence of evil". I truly believe that somewhere in this quote lie the answers. We must try to find them, if we can.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Fancy Nancy - Not A Chancy !!!

This is scary, scary stuff! Fancy Nancy is not only totally off-base, she is probably up for the "Hypocrite of the Year" award. She is so totally disingenuous she somehow fails to mention her deliberate disregard for environmental issues (documented) whenever they happen to negatively impact the Pelosi family business. She and her husband also have a track record for being anti-union (also documented) in their hiring practices. To think she really cares about people is completely ludicrous. She is a total fraud.

So here you go, folks. Y'all keep on voting for these out-of-touch left-wingers until there's nothing left. They will suck you dry of your cash, your morality, and your famil;y's future.

Can you imagine this is what the electorate wants?????????? It is hard to believe there are American citizens who support her theories and can make any sense of what she spins. Take a good hard look at what she wants. Take special note of the last paragraph.

Nancy Pelosi condemned the new record highs of the stock market as "just another example of Bush policies helping the rich get richer". "First Bush cut taxes for the rich and the economy has rebounded with new record low unemployment rates, which only means wealthy employers are getting even wealthier at the expense of the underpaid working class".
She went on to say "Despite the billions of dollars being spent in Iraq our economy is still strong and government tax revenues are at all time highs. What this really means is that business is exploiting the war effort and working Americans, just to put money in their own pockets". When questioned about recent stock market highs she responded "Only the rich benefit from these record highs. Working Americans, welfare recipients, the unemployed and minorities are not sharing in these obscene record highs". "There is no question these windfall profits and income created by the Bush administration need to be taxed at 100% rate and those dollars redistributed to the poor and working class". "Profits from the stock market do not reward the hard work of our working class who, by their hard work, are responsible for generating these corporate profits that create stock market profits for the rich. We in congress will need to address this issue to either tax these profits or to control the stock market to prevent this unearned income to flow to the rich."

When asked about the fact that over 80% of all Americans have investments in mutual funds, retirement funds, 401K's, and the stock market she replied "That may be true, but probably only 5% account for 90% of all these investment dollars. That's just more "trickle down" economics claiming that if a corporation is successful that everyone from the CEO to the floor sweeper benefit from higher wages and job security which i s ridiculous". "How much of this 'trickle down' ever get to the unemployed and minorities in our county? None, and that's the tragedy of these stock market highs." "We democrats are going to address this issue after the election when we take control of the congress. We will return to the 60% to 80% tax rates on the rich and we will be able to take at least 30% of all current lower Federal Income Tax tax payers off the roles and increase government income substantially. We need to work toward the goal of equalizing income in our country and at the same time limiting the amount the rich can invest." When asked how these new tax dollars would be spent, she replied "We need to raise the standard of living of our poor, unemployed and minorities. For example, we have an est imated 12 million illegal immigrants in our country who need our help along with millions of unemployed minorities. Stock market windfall profits taxes could go a long ways to guarantee these people the standard of living they would like to have as "Americans"."

Thursday, March 08, 2007

I Am So Sick Of People Over-Reacting I Could Kill Somebody!!!

I am so sick of people over-reacting I could kill somebody! Not really, but it does make a point of sorts, or hopefully it will before I'm finished.

FYI, I had my gall bladder removed last week. I was a little concerned that my level of unmitigated gall might be adversely affected by the procedure, but after setting around these last few days recuperating, and watching all the craziness on the 'news', I am finding I still have my full quota, and that's a lot of gall!

Where to start? Isaiah Washington got upset with a fellow actor on Grey's Anatomy, called him a "F----t", then apologized, saying he was checking himself into rehab, and the entire left wing press said, "How nice"! Okay, doesn't mean a thing to me. I don't even watch Grey's Anatomy. And, we went through this same idiocy with Mel Gibson and Michael Richards, although the press was not nearly as kind to Mel as they were to 'their guys'. Which brings me to Ann Coulter.

Ann Coulter recently gave a speech and used the same dreaded "F" word as an obvious joke about John Edwards and his ill-fated presidential campaign. Please note that I said 'obvious' joke, not necessarily to be construed as actually funny by all people. Lo and behold, the left wing media has hung her out to dry! They only show the part of her speech that refers to the alleged Edwards slur, deliberately omitting the rest, which was actually a whole series of one or two liners on various political subjects, all meant to be humorous in her own way. As Dennis Miller so aptly pointed out, she should have used the word 'maggot' instead. It rhymes, and is probably a lot more accurate.

Can Ms. Coulter be caustic? You betcha! It is what she does, and she does it very well. It is how she earns her living. Bill Maher can call George W. Bush an idiot and that is just hunky-dory with the press. He receives no flack. Ann, of course, gets vilified. It seems their idea of humor, and their agenda, do not allow for fairness to both sides of the political spectrum. Hmmm (in case you never noticed).

In my most humble opinion, the biggest problem the left wingers have with Ann Coulter is, quite simply, she scares the living be-geebies out of them. She speaks, they panic. She is an incredibly brilliant woman, well based in her beliefs and her facts, and very articulate to boot. As is par for the course, they can only attack her on a personal level because they have no message of legitimate rebuttal, nor do they have anyone in their camp with sufficient intellectual savvy to go head to head with her in serious debate. I say this because, if such a person existed, they would have surely trotted him/her out by now, and they haven't. In short, they hate her for what she is more than for what she says, but none of them would ever admit it either to themselves, or to the outside world.

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Scooter Libby was found guilty of committing perjury to a federal grand jury. In some circles that would qualify him to be President of the United States, but he is obviously in the wrong circle. It will be interesting to see what his sentence will be. In the event he is sentenced to actual prison time, George W's final act before leaving office should be his full and complete pardon. Hopefully, it won't come to that. I have yet to be convinced there was actually a crime committed in the first place.

Sandy Berger, on the other hand, was actually (in real life, even) caught stealing classified documents from the National Archives to cover his old boss' tail (as memory serves me, who was also convicted of perjury, but that seems to be different). An actual crime, by golly, and he virtually drew a pass. In shorts, er, I mean in short, a small fine, a slap on the wrist, some community service. Thank you very much, have a nice day. Y'all come back now, ya heah!

I certainly hope this all comes to light when they sentence ol' Scooter.

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File this under 'almost un-important tid-bits'. Don Imus was interviewing Frank Rich of the New York Times the other morning. In case you don't know him, Rich leans so far to the left he only has to buy a shoe for his right foot every third pair.

The topic was Rudy Guilliani's estrangement with his 21 year old son, and the impact it might have on his bid for the Presidency. When asked if he thought this might destroy Rudy's campaign, Frank Rich said this: "I don't really know, but I do know everybody in my business hopes he'll run" (he believes any of the top left wing candidates can beat Guilliani). This little statement is important only that he also will tell you there is no left wing bias in the media. Take your pick.

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Thank God the weasels have finally let Anna Nicole Smith go to her grave. May she rest in peace. Does anyone out there really care who the father of her child is, or am I totally over-estimating the mentality of the American people?

Just for the record, I am NOT the father of her child. On a serious note, this young child certainly needs our constant prayers.

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I forced myself to watch the news regarding the mess at Walter Reed Hospital. To say I was appalled would be a gross understatement. I know this is not a new problem, but that makes it even worse than it appears to be. We have been through how many administrations since the Korean conflict. The problem existed back then.

This is not about whether we are Republican or Democrat. This is not about who should be fired or who should stay. This is about doing what is right for our wounded soldiers. This is about finally stepping up to the line and saying once and for all, "This is just so wrong"!

This is about fixing what needs to be fixed without bogging down in usual government bureaucracy. In other words, DO IT NOW! We owe it to our young men and women who put it on the line for us every day to do whatever it takes, no matter what it costs, to provide them with whatever they need for total and complete rehabilitation, not only at Walter Reed Medical Center, but at every Veteran Administration facility in the world!

This must not be a partisan issue. They never seem to get resolved. Let's tell our government, "Okay, whatever it takes. let's get it done. NOW"!