Sunday, July 15, 2007

random thoughts before vacation

This will be my last post until August. We're taking a big family get-together trip out West (my parents, my brother and sister and their spouses and kids, and my wife and I with our 3 kids), and there are preparations that have to be made which will eliminate any time I have for blogging. Plus, as those of you with kids already know, there are camps and ball games and swim lessons and a million other activities for the kids that will absorb my time, that we are fitting in around the vacation. By August, I'll need another vacation!

In the meantime, here are a few random thoughts before I go:

1. How about that Ball State basketball program! Ronnie Thompson is gone after multiple NCAA violations, and I say good riddance! See for my previous comments on this situation. It looks like the only thing I was wrong about was that it didn't take 3 years for Thompson to go.

2. Yesterday, my oldest son and I made our semi-annual pilgrimage to The Friendly Confines of Wrigley Field in Chicago. The Cubs hosted the Astros, and beat up on Houston pretty good (9-3). I'm not necessarily a big Cubs fan, but I love Wrigley Field and I love sharing the Wrigley experience with my son. He's 8 years old, but, even at that relatively young age, he "gets it" when I talk to him about the legend and mystique that is part of the Wrigley Field lore. What a great country we live in that we can share experiences like that! It was a sunny day, the Cubs scored lots of runs, Lou Pinella screamed at an umpire, Alfonso Soriano hit a three-run homer, my son had a thick slice of Chicago pizza and a Coke, and I had a big old Chicago Dog with all the fixin's and an Old Style. It just doesn't get any better than that! God bless America, I say!!

Besides watching the game and talking about all of the great players I have seen play in that park over the years, he had the most fun listening to all of my Harry Carey stories. After the game I showed him Harry's statue outside the park. These are things that I hope he remembers for the rest of his life.

3. Keep an eye out for news about the property tax problems here in Indiana. I'm sure that it hasn't garnered much national news yet, but it will. We the people of the Hoosier State are on the verge of revolt over the ever-increasing property taxes. There are a lot of homeowners in Marion County (Indy) whose property taxes have increased as much as 300% during the last year, and it's happening in other counties as well. GOP Gov. Mitch Daniels is showing absolutely no leadership on this issue, and Indy's Dem. Mayor Bart Peterson is doing his usual bob-and-weave as he attempts to avoid any of the blowback on this explosive issue. Meanwhile, homeowners are being forced to sell their homes in order to pay the taxes. This ain't over, sports fans! The populace is quickly becoming angry, and they are getting organized. I predict that this will eventually attract the national media types.

4. Today is the anniversary of Jimmy Carter's 1979 "Malaise Speech." That was a great moment in America history, wasn't it? Our economy was circling the drain, gas prices were skyrocketing as supplies were dwindling, Carter's approval rating slid to 25%, and the Ever-So-Clever Peanut Farmer blamed it all on a "crisis of confidence" on the part of the American people. We just needed to buck up and get a little of our "verve" back! How about that! We didn't have an incompetent president, we just had a citizenry with low self-esteem!

Here's what Ronald Reagan had to say about that malarkey on Nov. 13, 1979, when he announced his intent to run for President:

There are those in our land today, however, who would have us believe that the United States, like other great civilizations of the past, has reached the zenith of its power; that we are weak and fearful, reduced to bickering with each other and no longer possessed of the will to cope with our problems.

Much of this talk has come from leaders who claim that our problems are too difficult to handle. We are supposed to meekly accept their failures as the most which humanly can be done. They tell us we must learn to live with less, and teach our children that their lives will be less full and prosperous than ours have been; that the America of the coming years will be a place where--because of our past excesses--it will be impossible to dream and make those dreams come true.

I don't believe that. And, I don't believe you do either. That is why I am seeking the presidency. I cannot and will not stand by and see this great country destroy itself. Our leaders attempt to blame their failures on circumstances beyond their control, on false estimates by unknown, unidentifiable experts who rewrite modern history in an attempt to convince us our high standard of living, the result of thrift and hard work, is somehow selfish extravagance which we must renounce as we join in sharing scarcity. I don't agree that our nation must resign itself to inevitable decline, yielding its proud position to other hands. I am totally unwilling to see this country fail in its obligation to itself and to the other free peoples of the world.

The crisis we face is not the result of any failure of the American spirit; it is failure of our leaders to establish rational goals and give our people something to order their lives by. If I am elected, I shall regard my election as proof that the people of the United States have decided to set a new agenda and have recognized that the human spirit thrives best when goals are set and progress can be measured in their achievement.

Is it any wonder that the American people fired Carter and elected Reagan? D.C. needed some adult supervision, and Pres. Reagan was just the man for the job! Is this a teachable moment that I sense here? Traditional American values, also known as principled conservatism, have always been superior to liberaliar gobbledygook, and they always will!

See ya in August! God bless America!


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