Thursday, August 30, 2007

I'm Tired

I rarely use material other than my own in my blog site, but this letter caught my eye and I felt compelled to share it. My personal thoughts are that this reflects the truth much more than does anything we get from the media.
Whether you agree or disagree with the content, this is a real letter and the writer deserves not only respect for his views, but much greater respect for his service to our country. Please refer to: http://www.snopes.com/politics/soapbox/repya.asp for a look at this man's military career. He certainly personifies the word 'hero', and we, as a nation, are blessed by his service.

"I'M TIRED"

Two weeks ago, as I was starting my sixth month of duty in Iraq, I was forced to return to the USA for surgery for an injury I sustained prior to my deployment. With luck, I'll return to Iraq to finish my tour.

I left Baghdad, and a war that has every indication that we are winning, to return to a demoralized country much like the one I returned to in 1971 after my tour in Vietnam. Maybe it's because I'll turn 60 years old in just four months, but I'm tired:

I'm tired of spineless politicians, both Democrat and Republican, who lack the courage, fortitude and character to see these difficult tasks through.

I'm tired of the hypocrisy of politicians who want to rewrite history when the going gets tough.

I'm tired of the disingenuous clamor from those that claim they 'Support the Troops' by wanting them to 'Cut and Run' before victory is achieved.

I'm tired of a mainstream media that can only focus on car bombs and casualty reports because they are too afraid to leave the safety of their hotels to report on the courage and success our brave men and women are having on the battlefield.

I'm tired that so many Americans think you can rebuild a dictatorship into a democracy overnight.

I'm tired that so many ignore the bravery of the Iraqi people to go to the voting booth and freely elect a Constitution and soon a permanent Parliament.

I'm tired of the so called 'Elite Left' that prolongs this war by giving aid and comfort to our enemy, just as they did during the Vietnam War.

I'm tired of antiwar protesters showing up at the funerals of our fallen soldiers, a family whose loved ones gave their life in a just and noble cause, only to be cruelly tormented on the funeral day by cowardly protesters is beyond shameful.

I'm tired that my generation, the Baby Boom -- Vietnam generation, who have such a weak backbone that they can't stomach seeing the difficult tasks through to victory.

I'm tired that some are more concerned about the treatment of captives than they are the slaughter and beheading of our citizens and allies.

I'm tired that when we find mass graves it is seldom reported by the press, but mistreat a prisoner and it is front-page news.

Mostly, I'm tired that the people of this great nation didn't learn from history that there is no substitute for victory.

Sincerely,
Joe Repya, Lieutenant Colonel, U. S. Army 101st Airborne Division

Monday, August 27, 2007

Kudzu !!!

Kudzu! That wild growing, virtually indestructible, mostly uncontrollable, mass of foliage that plagues many areas of the southeast United States.

Urban, or should I say suburban, legend has it that it was developed by one of the southern universities many years ago to control erosion and look nice along the highways and byways. If you are from Alabama, then the University of Georgia did the dastardly deed. If you are from Georgia, then the University of Alabama did it. Mississippi, South Carolina, Arkansas, etc. Whatever. No one ever wants to take the blame for it. BUT, the bottom line is this: Kudzu was actually introduced in this country from Japan in 1876 at the Philadelphia Centennial Exposition. I have done my homework. I have studied.

So why, you may be asking, am I so 'hung up' (so to speak) on Kudzu all of a sudden? Valid question, answer forthcoming.

A good friend of mine made a statement regarding Kudzu a few days ago, the implications of which could revolutionize the economic structure of the entire planet. I will share this with you, but first, I wish to expound on certain facts about this 'wascally weed' that most of us are unaware of. I believe it will help to enlighten us all as to the potential it holds.

Kudzu is a climbing perrenial vine capable of reaching heights to 100 feet in trees, but also scrambles extensively over lower vegetation. It grows an average of one foot per day, so long term production would not be a problem. The root system reaches depths of 12 feet.

The non-woody parts of the plant are edible. Young leaves can be used for salads or as a leaf vegetable. It is high in vitamins A and C as well as calcium and protein content. The roots are rich in starch and the blooms are an excellent source of honey (also allegedy delicious when battered and deep fried). We have wonderful un-tapped potential here. Unless I have missed something (entirely possible), I am totally unaware of the existence of a Kudzu industry.

There are medicinal possibilities, as well. It can reduce the effects of both hangovers and alcohol cravings. Harvard Medical School is currently doing a study on Kudzu on alcohol related problems. It also has tremendous value as an herb.

It is very effective for erosion control and improved quality of soil. It makes excellent forage for livestock.

The downside of Kudzu is a monumental cost of five hundred million dollars annually in lost cropland and growth control costs.

BUT! If Kudzu could become organized, controlled, managed, and otherwise put to use in a positive light, rather than allowed to run rampant over power poles and trees, the economic impact could be beyond belief.

Here is the BIGGY! This is what my friend has suggested: FIND A WAY TO REFINE KUDZU AS AN ALTERNATE SOURCE OF FUEL!!! Think of the financial implications here. We would no longer be dependent on the oil barons. Chances are we wouldn't need them at all. We could tell them all to pound salt! I am sure there would be an invironmental impact, also, but I have no data on that at this time.

The re-tooling that would be necessary to re-vamp our domestic fuel industry would be a real boon to our economy. New jobs! This is absolutely mind boggling!

We could then phase out the use of corn in the manufacture of Ethanol, thereby easing production pressures on our corn farmers, which would in turn, help to stabilize the price of corn. This would then stabilize the price of barley and hops which should, in turn, help to keep the price of beer affordable (would this be the true meaning of trickle-down economics?).

Don't you find economics simply fascinating? I certainly do.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Fear !!!

"The remarkable thing about fearing God is that when you fear God you fear nothing else, whereas if you do not fear God you fear everything else" - Oswald Chambers.

There are those of you that will think this is a stretch, and that's okay, but does this not send a message to the secular progressive folks (and, they do indeed exist. Check out the agenda of the ACLU, George Soros, etc)? If they can, over time, erode Christianity from our society, they can change the face of this entire nation, ala western Europe. Quite simply, set out to rid our schools of anything Christian, but leave the other religions to do their thing. I do not make this stuff up, it's in the news on a daily basis.

Watered-down theology is running rampant in our churches. Entertainment value is replacing worship. Certain denominations are questioning the validity of the Virgin Birth and the Ressurection. They give thanks to Mother Jesus. Think I'm kidding? Check it out! I think it was also Oswald Chambers who once said, "Holiness, not happiness, is the chief end of man". Where has that gone in our daily lives?

I am sure I will get letters and e-mails calling me paranoid, but that's okay, too. This is not about paranoia, this is about someone who cares enough about the spiritual plight of our country to stand up and say, "Hey! We got trouble in River City! And it ain't spelled P-O-O-L. This is about someone who cares enough to be vocal about the changes he has seen over the past forty years, and the downward spiral this country seems to be in. Is it all bad? No, of course not. We are still the finest nation on planet Earth, no doubt about it. Has everything gone to "hell in a handbasket"? I don't think so. But, can we continue, as a culture, to do business the way we are doing it now? Once again, I don't think so.

My honest, non-paranoid view of things is this: Unless we return to the Christian values that made us the great nation we are, unless we dance with Who brung us, we will not survive over the long term.We need to begin fearing God in our lives. Think of the impact that would have on our terrorist enemies. How would they act and react if they knew that, in our heart of hearts, we held no fear for them, but only for our Lord and Savior? It could totally change the dynamics of this entire struggle.

Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote, "The wise man in the storm prays God, not for safety from danger, but for deliverance from fear".

Monday, August 06, 2007

I Smell A Conspiracy !!!

I smell a conspiracy, and it's got me hoppin' mad (so to speak)! It seems that more and more of our corn production is being ear-marked to make Ethanol. You know, the alternate fuel. The story on the street is, the more Ethanol we can produce the less crude oil we will need to buy from our friends in the middle east and South America. You know, the old 'supply and demand' theory. We produce more corn, we buy less crude oil. Helps our economy, hurts theirs. Crude oil prices drop dramatically. Sounds good on paper, but.....

Let's look at the BIG picture here: Demand for corn continues to escalate, production begins to lag behind, some farmers actually have to start planting stuff again in order to make a living. Corn prices begin to rise as production continues to lag behind demand. Canned and frozen corn prices in our super markets spiral out of control, negating savings at the gas pump.

You may think I'm out of my mind, but stay with me here. I am on to something BIG! The huge shift in the corn market will cause a natural reaction in other areas of our economy: The food industry will be forced to look for substitute products to replace corn. Alternative marketing schemes will be developed to maintain fair market shares. Food executives will be keeping an 'ear' out (so to speak) for new avenues of revenue. Consequently, barley prices will sky-rocket, as will the price of hops.

Okay, I have given you the BIG picture: Can you imagine what this will do to the price of beer?

We need to organize. We need stop this conspiracy in its tracks. We need to tell these people, whoever they are, that we will not tolerate a continuation of this nonsense, and if necessary, we will call on our people in Washington to 'draft' legislation against it!

(Disclaimer: This was just for fun, okay?)