Tuesday, December 29, 2009

War On Terror Like War on Drugs

Terrorist, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, brings explosives on Northwest Flight 253. Homeland Security springs into action and puts additional screening measures into place, including banning passengers from holding coats or blankets in their laps or using restrooms during the flight’s last hour.

Years ago when the U.S. declared a "war on drugs," it put lots of money, manpower, etc. into catching street drug dealers and addicts. It filled America's prisons with them. Were there efforts to stop drugs at the source? Yes, but the real focus was on the minutiae.

Decades later, we have an exploding prison population and Mexico is in danger of being taken over by a drug cartel.

The government is making the same mistakes with the war on terror (a term that Obama has scrapped). A terrorist brings liquid explosives on a plane. No more shampoo in your carry-on bag. A terrorist tries to ignite a bomb in his shoe. Eighty-year-old grandmothers have to remove their shoes before boarding. At the end of a flight, a terrorist ignites his crotch. You freeze and pray you don't have to use the bathroom during the last hour of your flight.

What about attempts to alert authorities by Abdulmutallab's own father that went essentially ignored? Why isn't the data base for potential terrorists (which included Abdulmutallab) automatically linked with the no-fly data base, the excuse by Homeland Security for why he was allowed to fly? Why aren't we tightening the student visa application process? These are the issues we should be addressing, not blankets and bathrooms.

Terrorists will just try something else next time. Banning the phrase “war on terror” has made us forget we are indeed at war. Fighting it requires focus on the important things before the terrorist equivalent of America’s being taken over by a drug cartel is our reality.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Good Grief! It's a Charlie Brown Christmas

I decided to tap into the holly-jolly side of the Friendly Neighborhood Republican by putting politics aside for for the holiday to post an essay I wrote long ago. Merry Christmas.

As I prepare for the holidays, I’m reminded of a Christmas many years past when I learned an important lesson: a great Christmas doesn’t necessarily come in a perfect package.

That year I had lofty plans. It would be a Martha Stewart Christmas.

My expertly decorated house would be fit to be photographed for a magazine. I would bake awe-inspiring cookies from scratch. My husband and I would stroll through the malls taking in the splendor of the season instead of rushing to get our shopping done in a few child-free hours. Every gift would be wrapped with beautiful ribbons. Our Christmas cards would be hand calligraphed (never mind that I don’t know how to do calligraphy). Everything would have a special touch.

I thought I would have time to do it all because I was newly self employed. I could set my own hours! Time would be abundant! (Those who are self employed can pause now to chuckle at my naiveté.)

Instead, I found myself working around the clock on a client’s project. The countdown to Christmas was moving fast, and I hadn’t done anything. So one Saturday, I took a break to put up the Christmas tree.

We had bought a beautiful artificial tree at an after-Christmas sale the previous year. We sold our old tree at our garage sale. Or so we thought.

As we began to put the contents of two boxes together to form a tree, it soon became clear that we were dealing with the makings of two different trees. My husband and I exchanged wide-eyed looks of horror as we realized we had sold some poor, unsuspecting soul the bottom of our new tree and the top of our old one.

Because “self employed” is not a euphemism for “rolling in dough,” there was no way we could afford a new tree and still have presents to put under it. Life was grim.

“Kids, we can’t put up the tree,” I said. “There’s only half a tree.”

“Half a tree!” my daughter said with delight (inexplicably), and she and her brother started sticking branches into the tree’s post. It looked like a malformed bush.

Then, a Christmas miracle happened. My husband, Ebenezer, whose laments of “Why did I marry someone who is allergic to Christmas trees,” and “Do we really have to put up the tree yet,” are more common during the holidays than poinsettias, said, “We can make this work,” and started fashioning a tree from the mismatched parts.

With his help, the discordant mess was transformed into a small Christmas tree. Granted it was only about three feet tall and winged out on the bottom like Farrah Fawcett’s hair, but it was a tree nonetheless.

My son, blankie in hand, gingerly touched a branch and said, “Look at our beautiful, beautiful tree.” It reminded me of the scene from A Charlie Brown Christmas, in which Charlie buys a stick with some pine needles on it from a tree lot, and Linus, armed with a similar blankie, says, “All it needs is a little love.” Then the children transform the pitiful stick into a beautiful Christmas tree.

So we put our tree on a box to make it taller, wrapped the base with my mother’s homemade tree skirt and decorated it. I’ll always remember the four of us standing together in the soft glow of the twinkle lights to admire our handiwork.

My father called that night after hearing the news about our tree. “I’ll lend you the money to buy a new one,” he offered.

“No thanks, Dad,” I said. “We have a tree.”

I’m sure somewhere there is a family with a similar Christmas memory:

Remember when we bought that stupid tree at a garage sale, and when we tried to put it together we had parts from two different trees?

I wonder if those people were able to squelch their inner Martha and accept imperfection like we did. Or did their warm, fuzzy feelings of holiday cheer turn to cold, hard, homicidal rage? We’ll never know.

The countdown to Christmas continued, and my husband and I completed our shopping in a four-hour marathon. The presents had stick-on bows on them. The cookies came courtesy of the Pillsbury Dough Boy. I never sent my Christmas cards. Still, one of my most cherished holiday memories is of our Charlie Brown Christmas.

It’s a good thing.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Argentina 1916 = America 2009?

This is a great article that was on the District 42 Blog site about Argentina and what happened when they went down the same yellow brick road Obama is making us skip on.

"Argentinian history doesn't fascinate me," you say? Give it a try anyway. It will make you think about America and how great countries can become once-great countries in the blink of an eye.

Don't cry for me America

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Writing Lessons

Okay, apparently I need to spell a few things out for a few folks.

I went into this blogging venture thinking there would be a few people out there who would send inappropriate comments to my blog but that most of the comments would be from people who truly wanted to engage in intellectual discourse about the issues.

How naive I was.

I now know that it is the exact opposite of the above scenario--the inappropriate comments rule and the civil discourse is nowhere to be found. Those who choose to comment are apparently fixated on killing the messenger rather than discussing the message.

Those who know me know I welcome opinions that are different from my own. I enjoy discussing politics with people, even those who don't agree with me. Sometimes I learn something new that sheds light on a particular issue, and I am grateful for the enlightenment. And I admit, I do like to discuss politics with those who agree with me because it's fun.

There is nothing I'd call "discussion" going on in the comments being sent to my blog. I've had people call me names and expect me to publish their comments on my blog. I've had people spew vicious personal attacks and expect me to publish them on my blog. The key words here are "my blog."

I've been accused of censorship for not publishing every bit of vitriol sent my way. This is not the public library. I'm not encroaching on anyone's first amendment rights by choosing not to publish comments I find personally offensive. I have the right to publish anything I want on my blog, because it's my blog. Does that make it clear?

If you wish to send comments my way, don't call me names, refer to my bodily orifices, or attack me in any other personal way. If you do, I won't publish your comments. Some of you have sent comments that have things I would like to address in them, but they are surrounded by insults. That's too bad, because we'll never get the chance to talk about the issues at hand.

I'm so surprised by the nastiness directed at me personally just because I may have a differing opinion on a political issue than someone else. It makes me wonder if those who comment are all still in junior high.

I do want to address one thing that came up in one comment from today. Apparently I've offended someone who thinks I'm calling people names when I use the word, "libs." I'm so sorry if people find this offensive. I guess I'll use the full word "liberal" instead. And I don't consider calling someone a liberal to be name calling. I don't object to being called a conservative. It is what it is.

So, to go over this one more time: if you wish to comment and have your comments posted, or even read for that matter, please refrain from personal attacks and discuss the issues. If you can't do that, then don't bother taking the time to comment because your comment will be deleted, and that's a waste of time. I welcome all serious attempts at expressing opinion or promoting discussion. Now, do we understand each other?

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Obama's “Cash for Caulkers”--Long on Caulk, Short on Cash

Obama's newest photo op was at a Home Depot in Virginia to promote his "cash for caulkers" program. His newest idea to create jobs is to give tax breaks to citizens who insulate, caulk, install windows, etc.

Okay, I suppose to some people who are mostly concerned about what they're going to "get" from the government, this would look good. I want to caulk my house. The government will help pay for my caulk! I want new windows. The government will give me money for them!

But where does the money come from? So many forget that any government funds originally belonged to us, the taxpayers. So essentially, we are paying for ourselves to get caulk and windows.

This is supposed to be a job creation program. What kinds of jobs will it create? Will so many people flock to Home Depot that they will need to hire more employees? Let's say the answer to that is yes, though I'm skeptical. Will those jobs be the kinds of jobs that could support a family? What happens to those jobs when the government runs out of money for caulk?

Will so many people install new windows in their homes (which is incredibly expensive, even with "government money") that companies who install windows will need to hire massive amounts of new employees to install or manufacture those windows? What I think is more likely to happen is companies that install windows will have more work for their existing employees, and it may stop some layoffs.

Is stopping layoffs creating jobs? Is giving more work to existing workers creating jobs? Is the quality of any jobs created high enough to support a family?

I'm so tired of these job creation programs thought up by liberal elitists who don't seem to understand what is going on in America. Last summer, they were talking about "shovel ready jobs." They came up with ideas to build bridges and roads and jobs that catered to unions (who always vote Democrat). But they never thought about what would happen once those projects were finished. What happens to the workers then? Do they still have work to do? No. What happens when a worker has no work to do? His job is eliminated.

The "jobs" this administration "creates" seem to be:
  1. short-term construction jobs
  2. short-term low-paying retail jobs
  3. short-term manufacturing jobs
  4. white-collar government jobs (10,000 per month, but that doesn't count because it's taxpayer funded and is a whole different blog.)

Why is every job they ever talk about "creating" a blue-collar job? It's as if they think America consists entirely of blue-collar citizens, while the only white-collar jobs are in government. Doesn't that betray a pretty screwed up world view?

There are millions of unemployed white collar workers (IT, human resources, marketing, accounting) right now. There are thousands of entrepreneurs who can't start businesses or can't maintain their businesses.

You could argue that if you create manufacturing jobs you might need more white collar workers to manage the extra people and projects. You could argue that, but you shouldn't because every job this administration has thought about creating is short term. Businesses don't create permanent jobs for white collar professionals for short-term projects. They just pile the work onto existing employees.

We need to create not only "shovel ready" jobs, but jobs for the other people in America: white collar workers that support families and have enough disposable income to buy things, go on vacation, go out to eat. You know, all the stuff Americans have stopped doing that help create permanent jobs.

So Obama went to Home Depot. He should have stayed home and looked at his calendar, which should read 2009, not 1933.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Some Light Reading

This is a great blog post by John Stossel. The title speaks for itself.

Copenhagen Hypocrites

Stossel's blog is listed to the right under "Excellent Links."

Saturday, December 5, 2009



Remember the power that word had when you were a kid? Teachers used it as a tool to control unruly children. It was used in neighborhood games like tag.

It meant stop, immediately. Don't move a muscle. Drop everything you're doing. Stay in that position until someone touches you or says, "Simon says."

That's what I want to say to anyone involved in any legislation or official discussions having to do with global warming or carbon emissions. To all the people (except the Republicans) at the 2009 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen,
Drop everything you're doing. Don't do anything until the real science comes in. Don't continue as if nothing has happened. I know a lot of you have a lot of money riding on this hoax, but try being a member of the human race for a moment. You must stop what you're doing and reconsider before basing laws, declarations and rules on tainted science, especially when that science has come under legitimate public scrutiny in a scandalous manner. Don't use this questionable foundation on which to build regulations that could change the entire landscape of America's economy. Don't eliminate the middle class because of outrageous energy costs that would affect every aspect of American life: our homes, our schools, our transportation, our dreams. Please,


President Obama, stop meeting with people like Al Gore. Start listening to those who uncovered the epic deception of ClimateGate. (I know the article in this link is very long, but I encourage you to read all of it. You'll come away with a much better understanding of ClimateGate and the Global Warming ruse.) I would have the utmost respect for President Obama if he stopped and admitted he was duped like the rest of us (well not all of us, but those who bought the whole anthropogenic global warming thing).

From the American Thinker: "After all, the stakes are enormous: perhaps trillions of dollars and unquestionably every American’s personal liberties. Tomorrow, over 20,000 delegates from 193 nations will gather in Copenhagen to craft an agreement which would not only force American power consumption to levels equal to those of about 1910, but would also have us pay reparations for an imaginary “climate debt” we’ve accumulated by building the world’s greatest economy of all time."


But they won't. President Obama is going to Copenhagen to tell the world he promises America will reduce its carbon emissions by 17 percent less than 2005 levels by 2020, eventually leading to an 80 percent reduction of emissions based on 2005 levels by 2050.

First of all, what kind of an idiot believes America can or will accomplish such an outlandish thing? Some scientists say these kinds of reductions would put us at power consumption levels not just of 1910, as stated above, but of the 1850's, or equal to some of the world's poorest nations, like Somalia. Secondly, what kind of president wants his country to regress instead of progress? President Obama, I guess. So much for the "progressive" party.

The global warming apologists are in full force. This from POLITICO: "...the Environmental Defense Fund’s Peter Goldmark told POLITICO Wednesday that climategate isn’t coming up in private meetings among nongovernmental organizations in Copenhagen and is not an issue for negotiators."

Eden Prairie's own Peter Bozanich got it right more than two years ago when he wrote "Beware of global warming extremism" in the Eden Prairie News. We have already seen some of what Bozanich says global warming extremists will do to squelch those who attempt to uncover their fraud (e.g., censorship: mainstream media's lack of/slow coverage of ClimateGate), and I'm sure we'll see plenty more in the future. Certainly Copenhagen attendees' completely ignoring ClimateGate is consistent with Bozanich's arguments.

When I was a kid, they used to tell us an ice age was coming. I used to be afraid and lie in bed at night trying to figure out how far south I'd have to move so the glaciers that were sure to cover Minnesota wouldn't get me. We've traded one environmental horror story with which to scare the kiddies for another. Just stop it.