Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Fundie Mormons, Blog Debates, and Cardell McFarland

NEWS FLASH is basically news or thoughts that may be changing over time - an update or an evolution of thought that covers a multiple of topics. It is what makes a blogger tick and it is the reason why we read. So, with that in mind, I came up with NEWS FLASH as an acronym that stands for what is going on in life:



News (or current events)
Entertainment (movies, TV, celebrity, etc.)
Writing (thoughts on the blog(s) or other writing projects)
Spirit (thoughts on God and/or the supernatural)
Family (or friends)
Love
Anxiety (a rant or a trouble)
Sports (also considered should be contests, reality TV, recreation, cards, games), and
Home (house, yard, or even another family type of thought.
___________________________________________________________________

It is time again for another version of what is going on in Jeff's head. I guess the first thing that is going on is that he is referring to himself in the third person - just kidding. I did make another revision in the whole NEWS FLASH format. "W" no longer designates "work." Now it stands for "writing." Work is just too boring to refer to every time. If something exciting happens, I can work it into some other category or just make a post devoted to it.

NEWS - I didn't really want to comment on the FLDS (Fundemental Latter Day Saints) church, but it just won't go away in the news, will it? Now it comes to the attention of the public through the media that a majority of the teenage girls that were taken from the compound were either pregnant or already mothers. I don't feel the need to comment on that particular aspect. I am sure that everyone has their own feelings about it. Instead, I will just state that not only do I feel sorry for the girls whose childhood was robbed from them, but I also feel sorry for the mainstream Mormon church and really, all religions in general. We all have taken a beating from the events surrounding Eldorado, Texas.
Unfortunately for him and his supporters, but it is my guess that Mitt Romney can forget about any vice-presidential ambitions now. Society loves the concept of "guilty by association", even if that association is nonexistant for any practical purpose.

ENTERTAINMENT - CBS's Big Brother is now over for this cycle. It was more satisfying this year than last. The last two standing this time were two likeable guys. Where last year, the last two were the the two one would LEAST want to win (with apologies to Evel Dick), it resulted that there was apathy over the final show of the cycle. This year, most people were satisfied with whoever won in the last episode. I guess the only thing more satisfying is if a desirable is up against an undesirable and the desirable wins. Maybe next time.
WRITING - Apparently, I am still blogging. I am torn between being overly nice in debating situations, or just let 'em rip. I have a lot of experience debating on some board sites where people are just brutal to one another. I am not for that at all. However, I do not mind a little edgy bantering as long as there are no PERSONAL attacks. Right now, I am stuck in limbo when it applies to this blog. Doggone it, I love a good debate!
SPIRIT - A lot of people who claim to be Christians do not act like it. I touched on this a bit with my last post - at least in the comment section. People should be recognized as Christian by the fruit they bear.
"The single greatest cause of atheism in the world today is Christians, who acknowledge Jesus with their lips, then walk out the door, and deny Him by their lifestyle. That is what an unbelieving world simply finds unbelievable" -- Brennan Manning
FAMILY - We are having the big rummage sale this weekend. I am dreading it. It is quite an undertaking. It will help if we can move a bunch of stuff, though. I am having it at my house that I have been trying to sell. Wish me luck!
LOVE - Since the near divorce a few short weeks ago, things have been quite nice with my wife. It is really odd how life and marriage is in my world. I hope we turned the corner, but I have had that hope many times before. Hopefully, I can learn to trust her again. Hopefully, I will find good reason to.
ANXIETY - I don't want to mention driving again, but it is the first thing I always think of - you know the people that believe that traffic laws do not apply to them. Trying to keep five dogs quiet while feeding and letting them out at 5 am is right up there, too, for causing anxiety. The misbehaving kindergartners I tutor do their fair share of being grey hair causing agents. I guess right now, it is the upcoming rummage sale that has got my anxiety-filled attention this week.
SPORTS - A kid who went to my high school signed a national letter of intent to play basketball for Missouri State. Cardell McFarland has worked hard in a Maine prep school to make sure he was ready, both physically, and scholastically to play college basketball. Most didn't think he would ever play in college. So far, so good. I'm pulling for him. He could be a GREAT college basketball player. Remember his name!
HOME - As far as buying the "dream house" as mentioned in the last NEWS FLASH, wiser heads prevailed and we are passing on it. Fortunately for me, my wife caught a little wisdom herself so I avoided being the bad guy. We are definitely going to move, barring the marriage takes another hit, but we need more time and money. Doesn't everyone?

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Do We Really Care?

A couple of weeks ago, I informed anyone who would "listen" that I would express my opinion on any topic that they desired. I did get some requests via email. Not long after that, drama ensued in my life leaving this little exercise on the back burner. However, me being the honor-my-commitments kind of guy, I am going to deal with one of them today. Since this request came via email, I can only assume that the sender wanted to remain anonymous. So he/she shall be in this post also.

The question of the day is: Do people STILL care about others today in this morally depraved world?

This question assumes that people, for the most part, did care for others and now there is not enough evidence to take that concept as a given. I am not prepared to concede that given, but I can leave that argument for another time (or you can draw your own conclusions based on this response).

One interesting thing about principles and rules is that there are always exceptions. Some even argue that the exception proves the rule. Thank God there may be exceptions to the rule I have discovered about caring people. There are some caring people out there; there must be! However, truly it is a rare thing. Often times, we read in the paper where someone did a very giving thing and helped out his fellow man at personal cost or inconvenience. It makes it in the paper or on the television news because it is unusual. If it weren't, it would be commonplace and hardly newsworthy. Because it makes it into the media, we have the reaction of, "see, there ARE good people in the world!" Alas, I must conclude, however, that the exception proves the rule - that rule being: For the most part, people do NOT really care about others.

Sure, people say they care. They may even believe, at some level, that they do care about others. We know, that talk is cheap and only by our actions can we really discover how caring we are. True active care and compassion just doesn't happen with much regularity. It takes a great deal of strength to put stated compassion into action. However, we are not as strong as we think we are. There have been many studies done on this. ABC's Primetime Live and/or 20/20 has shown hidden camera reports how most people ignore or avoid situations where perhaps God or even good morality would convict them to help a fellow human. People just don't want to put themselves out or risk their own safety to help others. No one is willing to sacrifice. They just can't get involved in something that won't benefit them in some way, much less, set themselves back. It just isn't done.


We are greedy. Oh, it isn't totally our fault, we grow up in a system that rewards greed - in fact, it glorifies it. Many believe that capitalism is a system sent by God. However, all it is really is dressed up greed. Today, it runs amok. Let the market decide! Well, the market decided that Walmart is our goods god, and Mom and Pop stores aren't worth our time or money. Guess what? Mom and Pop are humans trying to get by in this world. Who cares? We aren't going to pay an extra quarter to Mom and Pop as long as the Walton family has anything to say about it by offering "lower prices, everyday. Find us right next to the general store with the boarded up windows" No sacrifice. Greed. Greed by the Waltons. Greed by the consumer.

However, we cannot blame the Waltons nor our bad neighbors that won't patronize Mom and Pop anymore. We can't because greed is a disease. It permeates all of us. It is all we know and it is the consequence of a fallen world. We have to look out for Number One, don't we? Of course, we do! No one else will because of their own greed. We are forced to be greedy or risk ending up like Mom and Pop.

There are also other things that add to our selfishness. Fifteen percent of our population either suffers from depression now or has at some point in their lives. Depression is a selfish disease of the soul - the heart of what we are. When a person is in depression mode, they care nothing about nor even realize the needs of the people around them. If the depression does not act as a contageon (which often times it does), the selfishness that bathes in it will certainly be contageous - if for no other reason for suvival reasons. Depression is another result of the fall of mankind.

The opposite of greed and selfishness is sacrifice. We just don't. The world calls us foolish for sacrificing for others. The golden rule today isn't, "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you." No, it is do unto others FIRST, before they have a chance to do unto you." Make sure you get yours. Of course, some do sacrifice for others - their time, even money. However, often times it is a calculated move. Do you think that big corporations give to needy causes because they are good? Nope. They give because it looks good for them. That money comes straight out of their marketing budget. Plus, they get tax breaks on top of it. We, as individuals, get a payback for being kind to others in a different way. We do it because it gives us a good reputation. There also may be a monetary reward for our good deeds. Sometimes we do it so we can convince ourselves that we are good. There is not much more valuable to a human being than a well-placed ego stroke.

When I think of sacrifice, I think of Jesus. By all records, He didn't do ONE thing for his own interest. He dedicated His life in its entirety, including His death, for the direct benefit of others. Still, those who are Christians among us, praise Him, but act the opposite in our own lives.

Is it hopeless? It appears so in the big picture, but not so much in our individual lives. However, it takes effort. I sold my beloved truck to a neighbor for well below its value. He needed transportation to make a living (in a truck) and to take care of his wife who was in poor health. Am I tooting my own horn? Hardly. Not a day goes by when I get tempted to question my action because it kind of put me out. I have to force myself to believe it was the right thing to do sometimes. I must shamefully admit that the disease of self runs through my blood also. However, we can make the effort and choose to be caring and selfless. It is somewhat artificial because it is against our nature, but we can do it. That should give us hope that we CAN be the exception to this rule.

It, indeed, takes strength to pursue a life of caring for others - uncommon strength.

We are frail
We are fearfully and wonderfully made
Forged in the fires of human passion
Choking on the fumes of selfish rage
And with these our hells and our heavens
So few inches apart
We must be awfully small
And not as strong as we think we are

--Rich Mullins
No, we are not as strong as we think we are. But, perhaps there is hope.

Monday, April 21, 2008

The Blogging Dilemma

From time to time, most bloggers come to a blogging crossroads where they wonder if they should continue. After all, blogging eats up a lot of time and it is a kind of thankless, self-indulgent sort of undertaking, isn't it? I have been at this crossroad before, and opted to continue. Logic would have it that the more one encounters this crossroad, the more likely he will choose to end his blog. This is because deciding to continue from the last crossroads encounter got him back the place where he must question the intelligence of continuing.

Why would I end this journey now?

1. The first thing that comes to mind is that inevitably if one blogs about anything near and/or dear to anyone else, drama is bound to ensue eventually. It is very easy to have one's intentions misconstrued when there is only the written words. The Lord knows that I have been in pickles with friends of mine concerning emails in the past. I take full responsibility for stepping on others' toes when it is my writing that delivers the blow to the lower phalanges of my readers. It is rather stressful to have to think about it and worry about pre-screening when one is "in the zone." In my current state of mind, when it comes to blogging, I would rather give it up then hurt or upset people I have come to care about.

2. The popularity of this blog has dwindled in recent weeks. My technorati authority number is half of what it used to be, for example. I don't really think it is less interesting, but I wouldn't, would I? I think it has to do with me posting less frequently than I used to because my life is so chaotic right now. Not only am I blogging less, but I also have less time to read your blogs and comment. There is an obligatory element among the blog community that operates under the 'blog rule of reciprocity". This states that if you comment on mine, I will comment on yours. Stop coming to mine, don't look for me on yours. I would rather not participate in this kind of mentality. I read and comment on your blogs because I want to - when I find the time. There are many blogs I read and comment on from time to time and I NEVER hear from them here. It is a mutually exclusive relationship for me. Still, there is a definite pattern there that can't be ignored. I would like to think that this blog will bring readers and commenters because of its content, not because of the social rules of blog society. I guess we would all like to think this.

Why would I continue?

1. I guess blogging and my little corner of the blog community is a part of me now. I would miss it and you a lot.

2. I NEED to write. I haven't given up my dreams of writing bigger and better things. I endeavor to be a relevant writer. Blogging gives me an incentive to write regularly. That is important for a writer. Part of me thinks that if I stop here, I will eventually stop altogether. Another dream dead is a depressing thought, isn't it?

My Options

1. Obviously, I could quit. I really don't have time for a hobby anyway. Any of the 10,000 people over the past years wanting to buy my project car decaying in the back of my mother's driveway can attest to that.

2. I could quit THIS blog and start another one that is less personal and more controversial. I can learn to not care about what others think of me and concentrate on the issues. It would kind of leave the "community" aspect of the way blogging is for me now, but trade it in for this kind of thing.

3. I could just continue the way things are and chalk it up to the reality of the world of blogging.

I must admit that all three of these options are somewhat depressing which again brings up the question, "Really, what IS the point?" I wonder what you think. . .

Friday, April 18, 2008

How Bad is Bush?

A dear friend of mine has raised the issue of the Bush presidency not being as bad as many perceive it to be. I thought it may be worthwhile to explore this.

My personal opinion of Bush is that he may be the worst president that we have ever had. The only thing I can think of that was positive is that he did a good job with Aids in Africa. I respect him for that. Besides that, though, he took an economy that was finally in the black and trashed it to the point that now we are in a recession. In addition, he put us in a war that was unnecessary and cost more American lives than the 9/11 tragedy. What's more, he has trampled on our liberties with his "anti-terrorists" tactics. He even trashed the reputation of his party. Barring some Democratic catastrophe, they have no chance in keeping the White House or recapturing either house of Congress.

These arguments did not dissuade my friend from removing her "I'm a Bushie, and Darned Proud of it" bumper sticker. Instead she countered my arguments with, "No, Bush is not the worst. Carter, Nixon, Clinton....all come to mind.We were in the black until 9/11 hit; our country just hasn't fully recovered from that. I think blaming Bush is a scapegoat. During his presidency home ownership has been at an all time high (esp among blacks), unemployment was at an all-time low, and we've had no other terrorists attacks on U.S. soil. I don't think people grasp what has been done to protect us. There are fascists out there who want to kill us. This is why I support the war on terror. After two years of fighting in the Revolutionary War, it grew quite unpopular. I doubt anyone would consider that a waste. Our liberties have been trampled by groups like the ACLU and even Congress. Bush has alienated folks in the Republican party because he is not tough enough. He has folded to the whims of special interest groups and the likes of Pelosi and Reid."

Her response is the kind of thing that keeps me an independent. When I see the Republican and Democratic talking points, I always question them for truth and accuracy. Her rebuttal reminded me that Obama is not the only one with Kool-Aid drinking followers. No offense to her, though. ;)

I will concede that Carter and Nixon were not good presidents. Carter was naive and Nixon was a crook. Nixon was bad, not just because of the crooked activities, but because he is a lot of the reason we have a healthcare crisis in this country. Clinton's job performance was fantastic, though. I can't believe any fair minded person could say, with a straight face, that it was anything other than glowing. As I mentioned in my post, personal and moral lackings aside, was it the peace or the prosperity that people such as my friend objected to the most?

However, Bush is at a whole other level of failure than Carter and Nixon - for the reasons I stated above. However, let's look at what my friend gives him credit for.

Yep, we were in the black before 9/11 - just months after Bush's first term started. Clinton put us in the black after fixing the economic mess that Reagan started and Bush, Sr. kept going.

Homeownership went up - Yes, and the reason was the subprime mortgage disaster. Blacks and Hispanics were hurt the worst with a record number of foreclosures.

Unemployment has been down and that is good, however, the confirming factor that we are, indeed, in a recession, is because in recent months we are losing thousands of jobs - 80,000 just last month and 150,000 since the end of January.

No OTHER terrorist attacks on US soil - I think this is the lamest of all "achievements" that Bushies claim. Gee, we have also had no large meteors hit the Earth, none of the seven plagues of Egypt has befallen us, and no invasions from beings from other planets, either. These things and the fact that California hasn't been detached and lost to the Pacific should encourage us all to put "W" on Mt. Rushmore. You know what? Bush has had more terrorist attacks on US soil than Richard Nixon.

The War on Terror ended, for all practical purposes when the US invaded Iraq. Bin Laden and al Quaida were not in Iraq, they were in the mountainous area around the Afghanistan/Pakistan border. The US diverted way too many resources to the mindless war in Iraq before the job was complete in the terrorist region. The War in Iraq should not be confused with the "War on Terror" - which can't really be won, by the way. We can only hope to contain it.

Comparing the Iraq war with the American Revolution has caught me speechless. I will just let it sit out there without rebuttal.

Our liberties have been trampled by tactics from the Bush administration that enables people to be bugged and have other privacy matters violated without a warrant all in the name of the "Patriot Act." New Rule: Republicans are not allowed to use the word "patriot" until the Bush administration has officially come to a close.

I am no fan of the ACLU, however, and think it has missed its "should-be" focus.

Bush has failed his own party because of all the things I have mentioned, not because of some perceived weakness. Popularity fuels a political party and Bush is one of the least popular presidents in history. If he was a stronger Bush (i.e. pursuing his failed policies more aggressively), I don't think he could survive to the end of his term. My gosh, why do you think the Republicans nominated McCain? It is because he is a maverick (by Republican standards anyway).

So there you have it, Jeff's view of the Bush presidency? What do others of you think? Give me some feedback or at least participate in the poll below (it is way down there so keep scrolling). If you do both, you get Psychosomatic Wit brownie points!

Scroll Down To Vote!
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free pollsWho is the worst president of the US since 1900?
Franklin D. Roosevelt
Harry S. Truman
Lyndon B. Johnson
Richard M. Nixon
Jimmy Carter
Ronald Reagan
George H.W. Bush (the elder)
William J. Clinton
George W. Bush (the younger)
Other (Eisenhower, Ford or Kennedy)






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Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Hillary, Smart People, a Mansion, and the Prodigal Wife

THIS IS CONTINUED FROM THE PREVIOUS POST!
NEWS FLASH is basically news or thoughts that may be changing over time - an update or an evolution of thought that covers a multiple of topics. It is what makes a blogger tick and it is the reason why we read. So, with that in mind, I came up with NEWS FLASH as an acronym that stands for what is going on in life:



News (or current events)
Entertainment (movies, TV, celebrity, etc.)
Work (thoughts on the job or employer)
Spirit (thoughts on God and/or the supernatural)
Family (or friends)
Love
Anxiety (a rant or a trouble)
Sports (also considered should be contests, reality TV, recreation, cards, games), and
Home (house, yard, or even another family type of thought.
___________________________________________________________________

NEWS - For the reasons outlined in the previous post, Psychosomatic Wit endorses Hillary Clinton. I still believe Barack Obama will win the nomination, however. Hillary hasn't thanked me yet. You think you know a person . . .

ENTERTAINMENT - Movie Review "Smart People" - This movie is about a dysfunctional family in an academic setting. It stars Dennis Quaid as Lawrence Weatherholt, a college professor and widower. His daughter, Vanessa Wetherhold, is played by Juno's Ellen Page, and his son, James Wetherhold is portrayed sparingly by Ashton Holmes. Sarah Jessica Parker plays Quaid's new love interest, Janet Hartigan . Lawrence's adopted brother, Chuck Wetherhold, played by Thomas Haden Church adds a comedic contrast from the overly intellectual family of dysfunction.

This motion picture is entertaining enough, but it had some distractors. Ellen Page's character is very similar to the character she played in Juno. She is more conservative in this film, but her personality is very similar. There were some contradictions in the character that distracted me, but overall, it was a good performance. Sarah Jessica Parker's portrayal of Janet, former student of Quaid's and present doctor threw me off balance as the movie progressed towards a conclusion. She appeared to be the one character in the film that had it all together. However, a couple of scenes put that into question which makes the viewer wonder where one can find a sane perch to the view this spectacle. As for the other acting performances, Dennis Quaid was good enough in playing a role that isn't typical for him and Haden's portrayal of Chuck added the much needed humorous element.

Smart People is a formula movie, so it is somewhat predictable. I am one of the few people who does not mind "predictable" as long as it is done correctly. Unpredictable movies often leave a bad taste because one's mind wants an orderly resolution. This movie is good enough. If you are a movie buff and see a ton of movies, I would recommend to you to go see it. However, if you go to the theater in a more sparingly fashion, there are probably other options that would be more satisfying. It is a good rental movie. My grade - B.

WORK - I am entering into a partnership with a guy I have known all my life. We buy old vehicles, repair them, and sell them at a decent profit. He has done this sort of thing before, and has found it very profitable. Since it is going to be his main source of income, he is dedicated to the proposition. This could help us both quite a bit. Keep your fingers crossed.

SPIRIT - I have taken great comfort lately in knowing the reality of my soul and spirit. Living in this fallen world where there is lying, cheating, stealing, greed, and murder, I take great solace that I have hitched my wagon to a God that transcends all that. Knowing that no matter how hard this life is, that my permanent home is not here and that something greater is always waiting just beyond the horizon. This is not a hope, but a know. The path to this knowledge is trying to understand these things that go beyond our own scope. However, this pales in comparison to the point when we can know without understanding.

FAMILY - I recently got my sister's car repaired so she could help me with my mother more. It has been a week, and haven't seen her since. My other sister is transferring back from a nursing home into the hospital proper. Who knows how this is going to work itself out. My mother has been throwing up a lot lately. I changed around the way I dispense her medicine to her and she has been vomit-free the past four days. Praise God!

LOVE (or lunacy) - My marriage was all but ended last I NEWS FLASHED. Without getting into too much detail, she decided to stay literally in the last hour. Lest you believe that this was posturing, I know that she had to cancel plans - including stopping a realtor from putting the house on the block. I really don't know what happened. I am not prepared to write about it anyway. I do know it has something to do with me being there for her despite this adversity, and a conversation she had with her father. It has been two weeks and things have been much better for us. Perhaps she learned something that stuck. Perhaps not. At this point, I cannot let my guard down. However, the faithful romantic and cock-eyed optimist that I am is looking forward to the day that I can.
ANXIETY - For some reason, they have removed all the mailboxes (drop boxes) in the town I work. If you want to mail a letter, you must either have it ready at your own mailbox before the postman gets there, or you have to take it to the post office yourself. I don't really get this. They keep raising the price for postage, yet we are getting less service for the price. How difficult is it to empty one of these boxes while the postman is delivering at the address where the box is?
SPORTS - I entered three NCAA basketball tournament bracket contests. I won one, came in second in another and didn't place in the third. Altogether, I won $90. The irritating thing is that the one I came in second on, I actually picked the winner (Kansas) where the first place guy picked Memphis, PLUS I picked more games right than the winner of the pool. The scoring is skewed, wouldn't you say? Had I won, it would have been $350.
HOME - There is a chance that I am going to buy another house. As stupid as it sounds, one of my dream homes has come on the market. It is in the downtown historic district by the river and it was built in 1899. It was a mansion in its day. If I was only more sure about my future . . .

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Psychosomatic Wit Makes Presidential Endorsement

NEWS FLASH is basically news or thoughts that may be changing over time - an update or an evolution of thought that covers a multiple of topics. It is what makes a blogger tick and it is the reason why we read. So, with that in mind, I came up with NEWS FLASH as an acronym that stands for what is going on in life:



News (or current events)
Entertainment (movies, TV, celebrity, etc.)
Work (thoughts on the job or employer)
Spirit (thoughts on God and/or the supernatural)
Family (or friends)
Love
Anxiety (a rant or a trouble)
Sports (also considered should be contests, reality tv, recreation, cards, games), and
Home (house, yard, or even another family type of thought.
___________________________________________________________________

This will be a two-part of the NEWS FLASH. The first part will just be about the "News" portion of it - the much anticipated Psychosomatic Wit presidential endorsement.


NEWS - As promised, I am prepared to make my endorsement for the presidency of the United States. I honestly believe that this year is the best crop of candidates for president than any other year I can remember. Perhaps it has something to do with enduring the bottom of the barrel with GW Bush.

The Pros and Cons of the Candidates:

John McCain - I was actually prepared to vote for McCain back in 2004. I liked him. He wasn't all about the company line and saw the unfairness of the Bush tax cuts and also took a firm stand against the torture of prisoners. However, since Bush ambushed him in South Carolina in the 2004 primary, he has since had his nose too far up W's behind for me to be comfortable with him. He should forgive Bush's tactics in South Carolina, but not forget. This and the fact that he flip-flopped on his stance on the Bush tax cuts, makes me question his character. Add these things and the fact that he might as well be GW Bush when it comes to the war in Iraq, one finds that McCain will hardpressed to earn my endorsement and for that matter, the presidency.

Hillary Clinton - I was excited at the prospect that one of the best candidates in the field just happened to be a woman. Here is a woman that has had some experience in executive branch already. She has also seen the government from the legislative standpoint by serving in the senate for the past eight years. However, she is not very likeable as a person, according to most polls, and she also doesn't come off as very honest. Exaggerating about the "fire zone" she landed in during a Bosnia trip (complete with smiling children) didn't do too much to fix that reputation. There is also the whole Bush/Clinton fatigue factor where people are sick of either a Bush or a Clinton being the president.

Barack Obama - This is truly a fresh face in American politics. Obama has a charm about him that many find irresistable, almost unfathomable. Often one hears his supporters say something akin to, "There is something about him." He claims to not take lobbyist money which is a big positive. He was one of the first to speak oposition to the war in Iraq and he inspires hope and a whole new group of voters that may have never entertained the idea of getting into the political process without his candidacy. However, he has very little experience and has no real accomplishments under his belt.
* * *
I decided to pick my president in much the same manner I would pick someone to run my company. I would first look at vision and then to qualifications.
My vision of this country right now includes getting us out of the quagmire in Iraq, fixing our economy, and working towards universal healthcare. Because of this, I have to dismiss John McCain off-hand. Although I believe he WANTS to fix the economy, his economic plans (including making the unfair tax cuts permanent) is too compatible with GW Bush who trashed the economy in the first place. He has no desire for universal healthcare and he plans on a US presence in Iraq for the next 100 years. Although he compares this to our military presence in countries like Germany, Iraq is a whole other animal. It would take years and many American lives to get to a state where we can have a peaceful presence in Iraq. For now, it is just unrealistic and really, unwanted at this point.
I believe that Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton both share the same kind of vision of this country as I do. So, I have to turn to their resume's. Obama served in state government in Illinois for about eight years. He has been in the US Senate for three years. In the senate, he boasts of spear heading ethics reform, although when examined closely, he wasn't THAT instrumental. Obama's best attribute is his ability to inspire hope - which shouldn't be dismissed.
Hillary Clinton has a well-rounded background for the job. Although people like to downplay her role as first lady, in the Clinton White House, she was privy to every discussion and a lot of behind the scenes policy-making. She was the head of an effort to get universal healthcare for the US. It failed because of a combination of things, but she hopefully learned something on how to get things done from the executive branch. Her eight years as senator from New York has shown her both sides of the government as it purtains to Congress and the president working together.
When deciding between these two, I had to decide what was more important, her experience or his inspiration and fresh ideas. What would a good company decide in appointing its leader. For me, it was all too practical of a decision.
PSYCHOSOMATIC WIT endorses Hillary Clinton.
This country would be better served if Clinton was the next president. Although Obama would probably be acceptable, he is only 46 years old. His age doesn't disqualify him nor should it be held against him. However, with Clinton being 60, this country has a chance at both of them being commander in chief if it desires. Clinton has the experience and vision right now, while Obama can only improve in that area with time. It would behove this country for Clinton to take her term with Obama gaining a position to better enhance a future presidency. Obama surely knows this, but doesn't care. His ambition is more important to him, it seems, than this country. As the famous psychiatrist Smiley Blanton stated, "The desire for success lubricates secret prostitutions in the soul."
If Obama is elected this year, then he will be finished serving this country in any powerful capacity at the age of 56. That is too many years wasted when he could be serving and learning for the next four to eight years and then serving as president.
There is still the concept of yet "another Clinton in the White House", the dreaded Clinton fatigue, the ol' returning the '90's. I think Bill Clinton handled this issue the best in a stump speech. He stated, "When people say the ’90s weren’t all that great, Hillary likes to say, ‘What didn’t you like? The peace or the prosperity?'"
* * *
NEWS FLASH will continue next time. Stay tuned

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Friendship, Gas Prices, and "Dude"

Some things that are on my mind . . .

I want to thank those of you who expressed your concern over my current situation. I want to publicly thank them and tell others where they can find them. If you want to read blogs from good and caring folks, try these:

Sayre - She's been part of my blog family from the beginning.

Jaquandor - He runs a very interesting and popular blog. He doesn't comment much, but that makes his comment here very special.

Kristen - I can't link to her because she has a private blog. We butt heads on a lot of issues, but I love her and wouldn't know what to do without her comments.

Michelle - She is my true friend from across the Atlantic. She has earned my trust in short order - which must mean she is a great gal!

The Real Mother Hen - Her name says it all. She is the only blog friend I have where I have a standing invitation to come out to her place for a visit! (Not that I blame the rest of you guys! :) )

Kristarella - This one has a good mind, a good heart, and a spirit connected with God.

Chris - a fellow dude (which is rare in blogland), a good cook, and an excellent charactor. Check him out.

Hoosiergirl - maybe the most friendly and outgoing gal on the net. I envy her ability to put it out there and make friends out the wazoo! She always makes me smile.

Bassman (the instrument not the fish) - Russell is relatively new to my blog world. Truthfully, I have a hard time reading his blog because he is estatically happy with his love life and upcoming nuptuals with his beloved Matchgirl. He is really good and genuine guy.

Thanks guys!


Changes

I am considering a change to my "NEWS FLASH". Instead of the "L" for "love", I am considering it standing for "lunacy" - even if it is just temporary.

It is time for the diet/exercise program to surface in my life. It is warm enough now to be doing things outside. Now, if it would just quit raining! Dang it, boy! This isn't Seattle, why all the rain?


Ramblings


Is there anything funnier than the "Dude" (Bud Light) commercials on TV? You know, the ones that offer a million messages that can be sent just with the word, "dude"? I rather enjoy commercials that are more concerned with entertaining me, than trying to sell me something. You can check one of these out here.

There starting construction on the bridge I must travel on every day. They did this to the other span last year and it makes for a grueling summer. You can read about me complaining about it last year here. What's the odds that someone is eager to "hear" me complain about it and hit that link?

I have a regular reader from Nebraska, but I don't know who it is. It is driving me crazy for no apparent reason. So, if you be the one, let me know with feedback or email me. I would greatly appreciate it and would be your friend for life.

I filled up my gas tank today at a station that was slow changing their prices from $3.11 to $3.32 like most had already. You know, I wish they would get Hurricane Katrina cleaned up already. You remember Hurricane Katrina, the reason that gas prices jumped $1.50 - $2.00 per gallon in one day. The prices have never come back down. It is all too fishy. I will be glad when someone who doesn't have ties to the oil industry moves in at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenune, Washington D.C. I know many will say it has nothing to do with the president, but I am not a believer in coincidences.

Upcoming

I am going to have a countdown on the most searched posts from this blog. I will do the top 3 or 5 - haven't decided yet. They keep popping up on google searches so there must be something to them, no?

In the next NEWS FLASH, in addition to the "lunacy" change, I am going to endorse a presidential candidate.

Also, I am in the mood to lay all opinions out on the line. If you want my opinion on something, ask me in feedback or send me an email. I will tell you whatever (God, politics, sports, love, family, marriage, race relations, books, movies, I can't think of anything off limits). This offer is for a limited time only - you have to catch me in the mood and right now you have. I will do two or three of these - if I get that many.


Dude.