Wednesday, January 12, 2011

New Book out

My new children's book, An Angel Named Carol, has been published and is available to the public.

Published by Mirror Publishing

Available at:
Barnes &
You can also ask for it at your local, favorite bookstore.


Shooting prompts lawmakers to push for stronger security

The Arizona shooting of a U.S. House member is prompting some lawmakers to push for stronger airport security for members of Congress as well as an increased security presence at home district events. However, many caution that security should not interfere with lawmakers' ability to communicate and interact with their constituents. The shooting has also spurred Rep. Dan Burton, R-Ind., to reintroduce legislation that would create a clear, bullet- and bomb-proof shield around the House of Representatives gallery. The Hill (1/11)
This seems to miss the whole point.

The congresswoman was not at an airport or at Capitol Hill when she was shot. She was at a grocery store or a mall.

Does anyone think making airports or Capitol Hill safer would have prevented this trajedy? I don't think so.

Here's an idea. How about we keep a closer tab on people who seem troubled? Trouble is, the shooter would have been institutionalized before the 1960's. Now he has "rights." No one can do anything about that. One cannot even make him take any meds that might alleviate any psychiatric issues!

The positive side to this story is that this congressman isn't blaming the TEA Party, Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh, et. al. for this trajedy.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Draining the swamp...

Nancy Pelosi keeps talking about how she was going to "drain the swamp."

Funny Nancy would use that analogy. Aren't the ecological constituencies of the Demoncratic Party against draining of any swamps? There might be EPA rules against draining swamps. I'll bet if a GOP lawmaker had uttered "drain the swamp" there would be hell to pay.

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Postal Rate Increase

Breaking News From 1917, 1932, 1958, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1974, 1975, 1978, 1981, 1985, 1988, 1991, 1995, 1999, 2001, 2002, 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009
"Post Office Plans to Announce New Rate Increase"--headline, Associated Press, July 6

Is it just me, or is the price of stamps going up at a yearly rate? Maybe it's time to buy "Forever" stamps by the sheets or rolls. You know, bulk quantity.

The Cheerleader Mom

This was in today's Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:

Court upholds confinement for Wisconsin cheerleader mom
July 7, 2010 11:33 a.m. | Madison - An appeals court has upheld three years of confinement in a mental health facility for a 33-year-old woman who enrolled in a Wisconsin high school and tried out for cheerleading.

Wendy Brown used her 15-year-old daughter's name and social security number to enroll at Ashwaubenon High School in August 2008 and practice with the cheerleading squad.

Under a plea agreement, she was found not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect to one charge of identity theft.

A judge committed her to three years of treatment, saying her release would pose a significant risk because of her history of financial and property crimes.

Brown, now 35, appealed her commitment but the District 3 Court of Appeals rejected her arguments Wednesday.

Interesting. So, we have people clinging desperately to their youth.

Here's an idea. There are proms for older folk who didn't get to go to prom when they were in high school. Maybe they couldn't afford it or their high school (like my area Lutheran high school) just didn't have one. You can now go to one.

Or you couldn't make all those baseball teams? Well, for the right price you can get on a fantasy camp--with the Major League Baseball team of your choice!

Maybe someone needs to start a cheerleading camp for older gals. They can all cheer for the Cougars!

Is This a Winning Strategy?

I saw this headline today:

Democrats Digging Harder Than Ever for Dirt on Republicans"--headline, Washington Post, July 7

So, tell me, are the Democrats devoid of ideas? Is the economy that bad? Is ObamaCare that bad? Are the Democrats so desperate that they have to scour for dirt so that when they run they can say, "We're bad, but not as bad as our opponents."?

This is not a winning strategy. It might be a difference in a close race. But overall it does not say to the American people, "We have a plan for peace and prosperity and this is our plan."

Of course the Republicans could run as bad a campaign. Can you see it now: "Vote for John Smith. He didn't vote for ObamaCare." Well, you have to have a plan to go forward. And that plan might include hard decisions, decisions groups like, oh, say union members and teachers might not like.

Paul Ryan, congressman from Wisconsin, has had a plan for several years. It is a start. Actually, Mr. Ryan's plan is well developed. This could be the ticket much like Newt Gingrich's "Contract with America."

Now, can any Democrat come up with a detailed plan? Or will they be the "party of 'No'" as they demonize Paul Ryan's plan?

Friday, May 28, 2010

Why not papoose bags?

NTSB wants child safety seats on airlines

The NTSB is recommending that parents strap young children into safety seats when traveling by air -- a recommendation that could make travel significantly more expensive if it becomes mandatory. The safety board says lap infants can be severely injured in severe turbulence or survivable crashes when parents are unable to maintain a hold on them. Child seats are a better option, the board says, but that would require the purchase of an additional ticket. KSTP-TV (Minneapolis) (5/27)

Here's an idea. Why not a papoose bag? Or an infant carrier that a mother wears over her chest? Do we really need infant seats on planes?

Are T.E.A. Partiers Hypocrites?

James Taranto in his "Best of the Web Today" column for the Wall Street Journal reported the following:

Some public figures, though, are so ridiculous that despite their lack of wit, irony and sarcasm, their vices and follies make their real-life utterances and actions hard to distinguish from satirical fiction. Such a man is John Kerry**, subject of a nonsatirical article by Paul Bedard of U.S. News & World Report titled "John Kerry Says Voter Anger at Washington Is Hypocritical":

Times are tough, especially among those still looking for good jobs, but Sen. John Kerry doesn't think Washington's to blame. In fact the former Democratic presidential candidate, concerned with the anger voters are aiming at Washington, says that his party and President Obama are doing a ship-shape job. . . .

"We've come back," he says of the nation, Wall Street, and the economy. "This is an amazing resurgence." . . .

"I think there's a comprehension gap," said Kerry. His point: While people may not be feeling the benefits of the bailouts and healthcare reform yet, Congress has been working with Obama to right the economic ship. Still, he sounded sympathetic to those kicked around by the economy. "There's a sense of some things unraveling" to them, said Kerry.

But he said that the D.C.-directed attacks are hypocritical, since many of those attacking Washington spending presumably want to keep their Social Security and Medicare and want Washington to play a big role in the Gulf Oil cleanup. "There's a huge contradiction on a daily basis," he said.

Maybe, he concluded, the Democrats should change their communications strategy "to better sell what we've done."

So, the everyday Joe who works hard his whole life, has part of his/her income taken from his/her paycheck, told that this is taken and kept in a trust for retirement living and health care, is now told by politicians that he/she is a "hypocrite" for being against government spending but wanting Social Security and Medicare benefits? Sorry, this doesn't fly. Social Security and Medicare are not bailouts. They are not "stimulus" spending. They are not kickbacks or earmarks.

Simply put, those two programs were passed into law ostensibly for the benefit in old age of those who paid into the system. Isn't bad enough one isn't garaunteed every penny one puts in? Now we are called "hypocrites." Sorry, this isn't hypocrisy. This is holding politicians to promises made to the American people.

But this is yet another way liberals shaft those who work hard all their life.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

GOP candidates' wording on Web strikingly similar--Big Deal or Much Ado about Little?

The Tuesday, May 25, 2010 Milwaukee Journal Sentinel featured this breath-taking report:

Madison — Several Republican candidates for Congress in Wisconsin and other states are using nearly identical language on their Web sites as they try to sway voters.

Presenting the ideas as their own, the candidates have posted strikingly similar passages detailing their stances on such issues as the economy, taxes and jobs, a review of their sites found. The similarity raises the question of whether some of the candidates are plagiarizing each other or whether they are all taking their language from a common source.

My first reaction was: "Wow, who would have thought? Talking points among Republicans! Soon the Democrats will do this too…"

Yet looking deeper at it, I'm not sure this is really a story. So some GOP candidates use similar wording. It's like they copied each other's web sites, or used talking points, or copied the planks of the party platform.

The GOP is a political party, after all. They are also known as Republicans. And political parties are a gathering of somewhat like-minded people harboring similar beliefs and philosophies.

And each party develops a platform. The issues on that platform are called "planks." So it is highly likely that politicians have copied and pasted their party's platform in their own promotional material--campaign literature, newspaper ads, radio ads, TV ads, and now the internet.

I imagine one could "pan the globe" and find three Democrat candidates that have eerily similar wording on the web sites. It's nothing new.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

War Heroes, or They Stormed Toys 'R' Us in Operation Toys 4 Tots

If the Demon-crats had any scruples, they would denounce Blumenthal for his war veteran claims. I guess “Toys For Tots” can get rather brutal when you bring toys to a roomful of tots, but nothing anyone can’t survive. Wasn’t it in 2004 when Demon-crats fabricated documents trying to shame George W. Bush’s record during the Vietnam War? I never heard W. try to claim his war record was anything other than it was.

But I guess when the Demon-crats hold up John “Three Paper Cuts” Kerry as a war hero (one who also turned on his fellow soldiers by calling them war criminals), then I can see where the left is coming from. In their mind, “Operation Toys For Tots” is the only thing the military should be doing.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Be Careful How You Use Words (Words Mean Things)

This letter was published in the Wall Street Journal on 17 May 2010:

I am writing to express my bitter regret at the most unfortunate use of the word "Polish" when referring to a Nazi concentration camp in an otherwise very interesting article ("On Style: Picking the Best of Spring's New Style Books," Personal Journal, May 6). By employing that linguistic shortcut, you succeeded in hurting the feelings of the people whose best sons and daughters were the first to suffer from terrible atrocities perpetrated by the Nazis in 1939.

An extensive system of extermination, concentration, labor and prisoner-of-war camps was built and operated by Nazi Germany. Describing a concentration camp as "Polish," only because it was located on the occupied territory of Poland, is tantamount to indicating that Poland was a participant in the Nazi crime. In reality, my country was Hitler's most brutalized victim with more than six million Polish citizens losing their lives during the war.

The blood spilled by the Polish military on all fronts of World War II, many times next to their American comrades in arms, calls for more diligence in choosing your vocabulary.

Ewa Junczyk-Ziomecka

Consul General of Poland

New York
To be honest, when I read the original article, I did not think of Poland as the aggressor but as the victim. Many of us are very familiar with the history of World War II and understand those words to be shorthand for the atrocities committed by the Nazis on Polish soil during World War II.

Yet the consul general does have a point. At some point people may not remember what happened in the 1940’s. Even now there are those who deny all or part of the Holocaust. General Eisenhower, when he first saw the concentration camps, ordered photos taken. How prescient was his reasoning that people may not believe what the Allies found there in the aftermath of World War II.

So perhaps a better phrase might be “Nazi camp(s) built and operated on occupied Polish soil.” Or maybe just “Nazi camps in Poland.”

Writers are often taught not to assume the reader knows what is written about. A magazine I read includes submission guidelines not to write like an “insider.” This is a religious publication for a church that is also intended to be used in outreach. If the writer strings together acronyms like “NWC”, “MLC”, “DMLC”, or “BORAM” without explaining what those terms mean, the non-member (and I daresay the nominal member) will be confused. The guidelines for writers states to spell out the acronyms with the acronym, so that the writer uses “Northwestern College (NWC)”, “Martin Luther College (MLC)”, “Dr Martin Luther College (DMLC)”, and “Book of Reports and Memorials (BORAM)”.

Overall, Americans tend to be sloppy writers. It may be a huge reason we have great disagreements among people. We don’t take the time to express ourselves well. Nor do we take the time to listen and ask questions to ascertain that we are hearing what the other person truly is saying.