Tuesday, December 30, 2008


The other day, on the TV show, "The View," Whoopie Goldberg got into a discussion" with Elizabeth Hasselbeck about continued "racism" in this country.

Whoopie continually interrupted Elizabeth with strident tones insisting that we still have "race problems" in The United States.

Well, Whoopie is right to an extent.

There are, indeed race issues still to be dealt with.

Whoopie is a very articulate person, who is very able to put together sentences that make sense and that express her thoughts and feelings well.

However, in my humble, but correct, opinion, she is not a part of the solution, but is part of the problem.

When I was in college at Stetson University, in Deland, Florida, I spent some time living in nearby St. Augustine.

In June of 1964, while I was there, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. came to town to march and to stage sit-down protests at area restaurants and diners.

Being in agreement with what Dr. King was trying to accomplish, I joined the march and sat down with the black community at the local corner Rexall Drugstore's lunch counter.

As I left the diner, I was stopped by a couple of guys who looked like NFL offensive guards...big!

The "leader" said, "Here's one of them now. Let's take him out back and paint him black with shoe polish."

Needless to say, I was more than a bit nervous.

Fortunately for me, a Sheriff's deputy pulled up to the corner and stopped for the red light.

I quickly stepped over to the Sheriff's car and started a conversation with the deputy at the wheel.

The two guards sort of ambled on down the side walk, and I made my escape back to my room at a nearby hotel.

My point is that I had been, since my high school days in Warner Robins, Georgia, of all places, involved in one way or another in the Civil Rights movement, because I believed then (and believe now) that the Declaration of Independence means it when it says, "...all men are created equal."

Having said that, I admit that I am no longer "actively" involved in the movement, because the movement has left its core concept of peaceful protest.

In my mind, at least, people like Whoopie Goldberg, Jesse Jackson, Alcie Hastings, Maxine Waters and Charles Rangel have done more to perpetuate the issues of racism in this country than they have done to help solve it.

Their speech is consistently inflammatory, their hatred for "white folks" is evident and their actions dissuade many from healing the wounds that have infected this country for too long.

Unlike a few years past, I encounter more people today who are blatantly expressive about their opinions of the black population, as well as of Hispanics and Arabs. Many of them base their feelings on reactions to those in leadership who think it helpful to ignite heavy passions. It is almost as though they wish to incite racism, rather than to mitigate it.

Is it, after all, to their advantage financially to perpetrate hatred and/or fear of people whose skin is a different color?

Whatever their motives, I wish we could all make an effort to adopt and realize the dream of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., as he expressed it, that people (he was specifically referencing our children) should "...not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character."

Now we have elected our second black President (Bill Clinton was the first...remember?).

Aside from his politics, with which I strongly disagree on most points, I hope that he can effectively further the racial healing that needs to take place in our land.

I am hopeful, but not overly so.

There are still too many inciters whose mouths are in perpetuating motion.

Saturday, December 27, 2008


I have visited several "liberal" blogs recently.

They have been writing about the economic mess we are in, and each one has tried to make the case that unregulated capitalism is dead, because that is what led to the mortgage lending crisis.

So, what do they do with the fact that bad loans were made to unqualified people because the federal government forced lending institutions to reach a quota of loans, which the feds then guaranteed if something went wrong?

I mean, do we just ignore that part of the equation?

Do we just pretend that didn't happen?

Are liberals convinced that if they just say it didn't happen that makes it so?

Are they really that dumb?

Are they really that arrogant?

Are they really that hypocritical?

Or are they just blatantly dishonest, with themselves and us?

Without being forced under penalty of federal law, lending institutions would have NEVER loaned money to those they knew could not pay it back.

They are in the business of making loans that they KNOW can be paid back.

How many times have we heard the old saying, "To borrow money you first have to not need to borrow money."

That's because financial institutions have to know that those to whom they lend money can pay it back...that's HOW THEY MAKE MONEY!!

I challenge liberal politicians (and you liberal bloggers, by the way), to for once in their lives to be honest and to tell the WHOLE story, not just the part they want to accept.

Capitalism has worked, does work and will always work, because it generates opportunity, and rewards for those who engage in it untethered by the intrusion of the federal government.

It was REGULATED capitalism that did not work.

The feds got involved, under the guise of, "We just want to help the little guy have a piece of the 'American Dream.'"

Well I have news for you.

The American Dream is not for all of the people.

It is not for those who will not work.

It is not for those who will not educate themselves.

It is not for those who have an entitlement mentality.

The American Dream is an opportunity to get educated, work hard, make personal and family sacrifices and to stretch through adversity, stumbling blocks and hardship to achieve one's goals, no matter what those goals are.

When it is just handed to people, it is neither a dream nor a reality.

It is a farce, perpetrated on Americans by the very government charged with the responsibility to, "...promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity."

Did you get it?

"...to secure the blessings of liberty...," defined by the Constitution as freedom from excessive government intrusion.

It is, after all, inspite of BO's desire that it tell what government can do for us, a document that tells what the government cannot do.

And, oooo, it's so good!

Saturday, December 20, 2008


For the Christian, this is a very special time.

For the non-Christian, it may be a time for gift getting, gift giving, partying, having time off from school or work, getting caught up in the hustle and bustle of the "season," or just a bunch of hub-bub about nothing.

For the Christian (not the nominal Christian, but the genuine person of faith), Christmas is special on many fronts.

The word, "Christmas," has two roots: 1) Christ - The Greek translation of the Old Testament Hebrew word, "Messiah;" and 2) Mass - the Latin word for birth.

In other words, the word "Christmas" means: Christ's Birth.

The birth of Messiah was predicted in the Old Testament. There are more than 300 references to the coming of, the life of, the death of, the resurrection of and the return of the one whose title is Emmanuel, and whose name is Jesus.

These predictions were made by different people at different times, many of whom had had no contact with the others, yet their predictions meld together into one continuum that was lived out in a little town called Bethlehem, the city of Nazareth and the Holy City of Jerusalem.

Jesus is God, incarnate.

That means that God came down to us to reveal Himself, to show us His plan of salvation and to make it possible for us to enter into a personal relationship with Him.

In Christ, God has made possible for anyone who wants it to have a gift that exceeds any gift you could find in a JC Penney catalog, at Walmart, or at Macy's: the gift of eternity in Heaven with Him.

Like any gift, you do not have to pay for it.

When I give gifts to my children, I do not ask them to pay me back for them.

By definition, a gift requires no payment by the recipient.

But a gift costs someone something.

A gift may be bought at a store. It might be hand-made. A gift might be something you already own and wish to give to someone else.

The gift God offers costs you nothing, but it is not free.

God, Himself, offered Himself, in the person of Jesus, to pay a debt we owe. It is referred to as a "sin debt," the debt we owe as a result of our having not lived up to the perfect standard required by the High Moral Law of God.

"Joe, why are you trying to cram your belief down my throat?" you may ask.

I'm not.

You don't have to believe any of it if you don't want to. That's your choice.

But I can tell you this, based on my own experience and on the Word God has given us, if you choose to believe in faith (not blind faith, but intelligent, Bible-guided faith), trusting in the work of salvation Jesus completed at the cross of Calvary, your life will take on an unimaginably new meaning.

There are those who will scoff (predicted in the bible, by the way), ridicule (predicted in the bible, by the way), and reject this idea (predicted in the bible, by the way).

That is their choice (and yours, if that's what you want).

But for those who choose to discover God's character, His love for His creation and His plan for its redemption (as found in the Bible), Christmas is the most special time of this or any other year.

Note: This is usually where I post articles about my political beliefs and stances; however, I am suspending that until Saturday, December 27. I'll be back with more political stuff for you to enjoy then. I know you will stand by with shrimp in your mouth (baited breath...get it?). See you then.

Friday, December 19, 2008


I AM!!

Just got clearance from the cardiologist to get back to normal (or in my case, abnormal) activities, so here I am.

My two stents have given me renewed energy and I don't feel tired after walking six feet across the room.

I have watched a lot of news and that helped calm me down when I was stressed...yeah...right.

There are several issues that are burning a hole in my brain at this time, so I will take a few moments to address them.

The one the press seems so uptight about right now is the use of Rick Warren to give the invocation at the inauguration of President Elect BO.

The gays are up in arms over it, claiming that the choice of Warren is a slap in the face to them.

Well, frankly, some of them need a good slap in the face, but that's another story.

What if the choice had been Billy Graham?

He has given the inaugural invocation before and has served as spiritual counselor to many presidents.

He believes homosexuality is contrary to nature and an affront to God, and that abortion is an abomination.

What is wrong with "you people" that you think freedom of speech applies to you but not to Evangelical Christians?

"Well," I hear you say, "Someone who does not believe in Christianity might have to hear something Christian at a 'public' function."

To you I say, "Get over it!"

We have to hear you spout off your paganistic hedonism in public places, so what's good for the goose is good for the gander.

It's a PRAYER! Get it? A PRAYER!

It's supposed to be religious.

If you don't hold the religion of the pray-er, don't pray with him/her.

I don't pray with the pray-er when the pray-er is a Muslim!

Yet his/her prayer has never hurt me one bit.

If BO had chosen a Muslim, that would have been his to choose, and that would have been OK.

What he HAS signaled by choosing Rick Warren is that he, himself, is not Muslim (which was a red herring to begin with), and that he is willing to allow freedom of speech to take its course.

That's more than the average liberal is willing to do.

I am the very LAST one to support BO on almost anything he stands for or intends to do.

But for a real, grown up, mature American, this should be a non-issue.

Are you one of those?

Well, this has gotten my blood flowing, so I might as well go on to the second thing that has my attention: The Auto Company and Other Bail-outs.

I was doing some studying about the Great Depression in my down time.

The fact is, depressions come and go.

They sometimes happen all over the world, as they did in the Great Depression, and to different degrees and at different times.

The one thing they have in common is that they afford the government an opportunity to act as "savior," which has inevitably led to a prolonging of the depression.

"But," says the 'well meaning' government, "We have to do something or else it will look like we are not doing anything."

Well, la-dee-da.

Let's give that a try!

The best thing that could happen to our economy at this time, Keynes and the Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act notwithstanding, is for the government to do exactly what it is supposed to do: NOTHING.

But Americans have made the government the nanny of us all and we think they should get us out of this mess.

They can't.

Whatever they do will only prolong the agony.

But they will, nevertheless, and Americans will say, "Oooo, they're so good," thinking that, when the natural rebound of the economy takes place, although postponed somewhat by government intervention, the feds actually helped.

It will not be so.

Look. This is the greatest country in the world, a world leader of leaders.

We are better than Great Britain, better than France, better than Pakistan, better than India, better than Kenya, better than Canada, and better than Finland.

While there are individuals who do their best to tarnish our image at home and abroad, we continue to rise above them and continue to be what we were destined to be.

There will always be Bernard L. Madoffs in the world, many of them right here in the United States.

Given time, they will be caught, prosecuted and removed from society.

Sadly, in the mean time, many people will be hurt.

It would be nice if we did not have people who think that they should have everything there is to have, even if they have to steal or kill to get it.

I did not say we are a perfect nation...I said we are the greatest nation.

People are still trying to come here, both legally and illegally, more than to any other nation on earth, because, even in the middle of a recession there is more freedom and opportunity here than any other place in the known universe.

BO will be President and we will survive.

We will survive because of our people, not because of our government.

Like some families, we will fuss and fight with each other, but in the end, we are a nation-family and we will continue to rise to new height after new height.

We will recover from this recession and be the stronger for it, with or without the government's help.

We don't have double digit inflation, unemployment or bankruptcies.

In spite of the ridicule he took for saying so, John McCain was right.

Our economy is temporarily in a mess, but it is fundamentally sound.

I, for one, will continue to fight for freedom from unbridled government control and for the opportunities afforded to all willing to take advantage of it.

Join me!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


I will no doubt be out of the picture for a few more days.

Sunday morning my heart launched an attack against me...one that threatened to be successful.

I was taken to our local horsepistal, where, recognizing that they knew more about horses than about humans, they med-flighted me to a hospital that knows how to treat living people.

Indeed, the best thing to come out of all of this, other than that I survived, was that I got to fly in a helicopter, something I've never done before.

They put two stents in my arteries, warned me not to get an MRI (stents are metal and MRIs operate with very powerful magnets...not compatible), kept me until today and told me not to behave strenuously until I have seen the follow-up doctor(s).

So, I'll be back soon...probably next week.

Don't spend too much time missing me, but pray for me, if you are so inclined.

Saturday, December 13, 2008





Thompson on how we got here and how to get out.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


That's how you pronounce it.

He's gutsy, if nothing else.

But you know what?

He's just one of many.

Don't get me wrong, I do not diminish what he has done, I'm just saying that he is representative of a pervasive attitude of "What's in it for me?"

We have become a nation of self-servers.

Its a "Make all the money you can, 'cause when the bottom drops out you might have to be standing in line waiting for a government bail-out" philosophy that seemingly few people realize is deadly.

If you're making all the money you can, you are neglecting some of the most important things in life: family; friends; country; God; health and rest.

Trouble is, money is mesmerizing. It grabs some people and won't let go.

In the end, they will do anything for money.

If it's a little illegal, well, everybody does it, so what's the harm?

So, if everybody jumped off the....oh never mind.

What's at stake is integrity, or wholeness as a human being and member of society.

The idea is that what's mine is mine and I'll keep it; what's yours is mine (or should be) and I'll take it.

If I want it, I should be able to have it, no matter what.

Different people have different "no matter what" levels, but there is very little difference in the end between a little "no matter what" and a lot of "no matter what."

The attitude is killing our society because it is destroying our ability to trust.

If one has to lie to get what one wants, or cheat, or steal, or maim, or kill, well, so be it.

We seem to be unable to do without or to defer gratification.

We aren't really that much different from "Blah-GOY-uh-vitch."

Monday, December 8, 2008


So, Congress has decided on a 15 billion dollar "bail-out" for the auto companies.

But this one will work.

After all, it requires that the auto companies be accountable to the taxpayers.

Accountable to the taxpayers?

Since when is a corporation accountable to taxpayers?

Accountable to stockholders, yes.



Oh, but wait!

They get government help.

That changes all the rules.

I've said before, what the government pays for, the government controls.

See, from Nancy Pelosi's point of view, the government equals the taxpayer.

Or something like that.

Accountable how?

No longer may the auto companies engage in the activities and practices that got them in this "mess."

Does that mean they can't hire union workers any more?

Oooo. That would be a good thing.

Alas, it does not mean that.

In fact, there is no clarity about exactly what it means, except that the head(s) of these corporations should no longer be the heads.

So says the government.

Since when does the government get to say who can head a corporation?

Since they decided to give the corporations taxpayer money, that's since when.

We are in a downward spiral into depression, emotional and economic.

Brought on by our friends in Congress.

I guess there is no accounting for government action.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

"In the midst of the worst economic situation since the Great Depression it would be an unmitigated disaster."

Those were the words of Barney Frank.

Never mind that he was part-and-parcel of the cause of "the worst economic situation since the Great Depression..."

Barney Frank, and his friends, Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, and all of the other conivers who told us, out loud and publicly that there was no problem at Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, AIG and all the other corporations now in need of BAIL-OUT, are the ones who required that bad loans be made in the first place.

I'm not sure why this isn't resonating with the politically savvy portion of the general public. It's as though they were some collective Judge Lance Ito and the mislead jury of the first O.J. Simpson trial.

Frank and his cohorts have been let off the hook, receiving not so much as a scolding from anybody.

They have not even been seriously challenged, let alone accused of wrong-doing, by so-called "conservative" Republicans.

I absolutely cannot imagine what power they must hold over their fellow lawmakers, to buy their silence.

In the meantime, they continue to blast away at the automakers' corporate heads, accusing THEM of mismanagement.

How on earth would they (Frank, et.al.) recognize mismanagement? Most of them have never owned a hot dog stand, let alone a large corporation.

But there is hope on the horizon, and I'll tell you why.

O. J. Simpson is an arrogant, selfish, spoiled brat who literally got away with murder.

But his, "I want what I want, when I want it, where I want it, how I want it, and I am O. J. Simpson, and by the power of my name alone, I intend to get it" attitude eventually caused him to step over a line of safety and make a mistake that got him caught.

This time he was convicted and will serve some jail time, maybe as much as 33 years.
In the same way, sooner or later Frankandfriends will overstep their power, make a mistake and will pay the proverbial piper.

When they do, perhaps they will suffer a political fate similar to the legal fate of OJ.

That's if, and only if, conservatives develop enough guts to require a reckoning of those who perpetrated the deed(s).

Don't hold your breath, but hold out hope.

What goes around, comes around.

Or so I've heard.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008


So...we are in a recession.

So says the government.

And we have been in one for a long time.

As usual, the government is a bit slow on the up-take.

Mostly 'cause they want you to believe that everything is hunky-dory and they are handling their power well.

That and other lies they're embroiled in.

Economists have long postulated that: "A recession is when your neighbor loses his job. A depression is when you lose yours."

A recession is defined by some economists as two consecutive quarters of economic contraction, or a decline in real gross domestic product.

Using that definition, we have, indeed been in recession for quite a while.

The sad thing, though, is the government's response to recession.

Presidents, Congresspersons, Senators, and judges seem to think they know how to control the economy and bring us out of recessions and keep us from depressions.

Presidents don't have a very good track record.

Raising tariffs is one of the reasons blamed for the Great Depression of 1929.

Herbert Hoover energetically tried to combat the oncoming depression with volunteer efforts and government action, none of which produced economic recovery during his term.

(Does the idea of volunteer efforts and government action resonate with anyone out there today? Think: Barack Obama)

In 1932, the Revenue Act increased the top tax rate from 25% to 63% and was Herbert Hoover's idea of how to get it together economically. Economists and I agree that this is one of the dumbest things HH did.

(Now we seem primed to repeat that experience).

During Jimmy Carter's administration, the economy suffered double-digit inflation, coupled with very high interest rates, oil shortages, high unemployment and slow economic growth.

On November 15, 2007, Economist.com had this to say: "In 1929, days after the stockmarket crash, the Harvard Economic Society reassured its subscribers: “A severe depression is outside the range of probability”. In a survey in March 2001, 95% of American economists said there would not be a recession, even though one had already started. Today, most economists do not forecast a recession in America, but the profession's pitiful forecasting record offers little comfort." (Underlineing is mine-JS)

Congress, both the House of Representatives and the Senate, have an even more dismal record.

In addition to going along with Herbert Hoover, Jimmy Carter, et. al., they now are themselves proposing the very actions that led to previous deep recessions and even the Great Depression!

What on earth is their problem?

Pseudo-psychiatrists say, "Doing the same thing over and over, expecting different results is the very definition of insanity."

So why can't lawmakers understand that doing the same things that led to recession and depression before will lead to recession and depression again?

Is brain-deadness a pre-requisite for congressional or senatorial service?

OK...I've vented enough.

I will now tell you (and all of the Senators and Congresspersons who regularly avoid reading this blog) exactly how to get out of this recession and how to prevent one in the future.

Are you ready?

Here goes:

President Bush, President Elect Obama, "honorable" Congresspersons and Senators, get your cotton-pickin' hands off of our economy!

It is above your pay-scale!

You are nothing but a bunch of lilly-livered, yellow-bellied, sap-suckers. You are beslubbering, beef-witted barnacles. To call you mammering, beetle-headed clotpoles would be elevating you beyond reason.

Get your hands off of our banks, our insurance companies, our auto-makers, our schools and any other entity you can think of.

Spend your time uniting this country, maintaining the justice system, keeping us peaceful, defending us against enemies without and within, promoting (not providing) our welfare, and ensuring that we are a free people...free from the unreasonable restraints of the federal government.