Friday, December 31, 2010

Over 100? Shut up

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This is what passes for informed television and print journalism today. Is it even calculable to determine how many people saw this on MSNBC and agreed? Or how many took away from it the belief that our Founding Document is expired?

A twenty-something egghead gets on television these days and expresses as journalistic and academic doctrine the notion long harbored by our youth - myself included - privately for centuries; that "old people" don't have a clue. It was a conviction I held as sacred until I became older and wiser, and I'm sure all of us have learned the very same lesson. Well, at least those of us who have actually "grown up". We were young, and we were wrong.

Once there was a time when it was possible to avoid the trash of television without switching the damned thing off entirely. Watching the news or information-only channels - and avoiding the idiotic "sitcoms" - was safe ground. Then the commercials started to creep in. You know, the ones that increasingly depicted the parents as morons while the adolescent ran the spot. It was subtle, it was subliminal, and it was effective. It became accepted that the young had the answers in this new age, and the elderly - anyone over 40 apparently - were behind the curve.

Now the game has expanded. No longer is it about setting the clock on the VCR, or getting new "apps" on the Droid. Now it's about what makes this nation function, and suddenly Ezra Klein is the voice of the New World. To kids like him, "thou shalt" is a foreign language, and has "no binding power on anything". And I'm sure that those "F"-looking S's in the original draft of The Constitution have poor Ezra all "verklempt".

That is strange, since I'm willing to bet that at least once in his relatively new existence on Planet Earth, he has forwarded - via electronic mail - the Cambridge University study which has the letters all jumbled. Heck, even geezers like me are familiar with it.

This study found that the human mind is an incredible processor of garbled information. "According to research at Cambridge University, it doesn't matter in what order the letters in a word are, the only important thing is that the first and last letter be in the right place." As in:

Reading test: the paomnnehal pweor of the hmuan mnid.
So what does young Ezra find so confusing in The Constitution? Could it be the rules themselves? Perhaps people like Ezra - both young, impressionable, and tools of older enemies of freedom - are simply being manipulated by the "education" they have received at the hands of like-minded adults. One such educator - in the incarnation of William Ayers, and now a member of AARP - once advised his then-contemporaries to "kill your parents".

There can be no doubt that there is a segment of our society that has long held a deep loathing for our Founders, and an even deeper aversion to authority. Now, people like Ezra Klein exemplify the culmination of decades worth of the "education" that has been inflicted on our youth. This new generation is no longer content to merely parse the language and meaning of the Constitution. The bold, new tactic is to utterly declare it moot.

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Monday, December 27, 2010

The Faith of Gore's Apocalypse

What Does "Global Warming" Mean?
Initially, it was all about the science. We were told that the leading scientists from around the globe were in total agreement that Man was destroying the planet. We were admonished that to deny it was pointless and foolish, and that further debate was unnecessary because, as they said, the "science is settled".

When some started to doubt them, they were cast as heretics and dangerous lunatics. Some of the disciples even went so far as to try to have the doubters treated as criminals. The strange paradox that resulted was that Science became the arch enemy of Faith, or vice versa, and became the glove that fit my affinity for the ironic perfectly.

While I rarely rely on Wiki-anything for information, a simple definition of the term "science" seems like a harmless diversion. "Science (from the Latin scientia, meaning "knowledge") is an enterprise that builds and organizes knowledge in the form of testable explanations and predictions about the natural world. An older meaning still in use today is that of Aristotle, for whom scientific knowledge was a body of reliable knowledge that can be logically and rationally explained."

In other words, science is rigid, and must follow rules that are either so, or not so. If X=Y and Y=Z, then X must equal Z. There is no room for ambiguity. Faith, on the other hand, is exactly that; a belief in something that cannot be either proved or disproved. You either believe, or you do not.

Whenever some horrendous event occurs and innocent people die, atheists always ask, "If there was a God, how could He let this happen?" The faithful try to explain that God gave Man free will, and they will be judged at the End, not as a running commentary.  That's when the atheist usually snorts and dismisses the explanation as rubbish, and touts science as a pure and provable way of life.

The irony lies in the fact that now, these same stuffy people are trying to say that sometimes X doesn't equal Z because Y is sometimes moody. This is precisely why the global warming alarmists changed shirts, and are now known as "climate change" alarmists, although they loath the term "alarmist". They claim that they are just trying to prevent us fools from destroying ourselves.

Quite naturally, with the extreme cold currently ravaging most of the Northern Hemisphere, and snowstorms raging out of control, people who doubt the theory of anthropogenic global warming (AGW) are now even more skeptical. We were told that the planet was heating up. How could we huddling for warmth, then?

From a wonderful article in Investors Business Daily:

  Based on global warming theory — and according to official weather forecasts made earlier in the year — this winter should be warm and dry. It's anything but. Ice and snow cover vast parts of both Europe and North America, in one of the coldest Decembers in history.
A cautionary tale? You bet. Prognosticators who wrote the U.N.'s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, or IPCC, global warming report in 2007 predicted an inevitable, century-long rise in global temperatures of two degrees or more. Only higher temperatures were foreseen. Moderate or even lower temperatures, as we're experiencing now, weren't even listed as a possibility. 

 But the New York Times' Judah Cohen insists on carrying the water of the alarmist crowd, telling us that this cold and snowy winter weather warming! Writing on the Times' Opinion pages on Christmas Day, Cohen offers this gem:
That is why the Eastern United States, Northern Europe and East Asia have experienced extraordinarily snowy and cold winters since the turn of this century. Most forecasts have failed to predict these colder winters, however, because the primary drivers in their models are the oceans, which have been warming even as winters have grown chillier. They have ignored the snow in Siberia.
Last week, the British government asked its chief science adviser for an explanation. My advice to him is to look to the east.
It’s all a snow job by nature. The reality is, we’re freezing not in spite of climate change but because of it.
Got that? We don't have to worry about frying to death because of global warming. We have to cool the Earth in order to stay warm. Further, as the Cancun Summit recently reinforced, the only way to accomplish this is for "wealthy" countries - like the United States -  to begin transferring $100 billion per year to developing countries. Ask any "climate change" expert how this could possibly be, and they are now likely to tell you that "you've gotta have faith".

My, how times have changed. Brr.

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Saturday, December 25, 2010

Wishing You All a Very, Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to All My Readers

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Thursday, December 23, 2010

The Spammer in Chief

Baghdad Bob may as well be POTUS
I have been inundated lately with emails from "President Obama", and despite my efforts to block them, they just keep on coming. One, sent from a surrogate but signed "Barack", prompted me to respond in my best, respectful rebuttal possible, and even asked to be removed from the mailing list, stating in no uncertain terms my political proclivities.

When that attempt failed, I marked subsequent electronic correspondence as "spam". Still they get through. So I decided that perhaps public ridicule might ultimately put an end to any further attempts to propagandize me.

So I will now post the latest email in original form, italicized, with my running rebuttal in normal font. It will either free me from further annoyances at the hands of the White House, or will get me on a no-fly list. (And, of course, allow me to counter the ridiculous claims of "progress" as running commentary).
Friend --
This time of year, Americans around the country are taking the time to exchange heartfelt messages with friends and loved ones, reflecting on the past year. They write of achievements and setbacks, of births, graduations, promotions, and moves.
These messages allow us to overcome the miles that separate us. And they allow us to continue one of the most basic American traditions that has held folks close for centuries -- the simple sharing of stories.
And as families gather around holiday tables this season, we also have the opportunity to share the stories of the change this movement has achieved together.
It is a narrative woven by individuals across America -- in big cities and small towns, hospitals and classrooms, in auto manufacturing plants and auto supply stores.
OK, you had me going there for a second. Like a Louis Farrakhan sermon, you opened with a fine message, but equally rivaling Louie, it quickly went down hill. Um, Mr. President? As families gather around holiday tables this season, there will certainly be shared stories of your handiwork, of that I have no doubt. As a general rule, though, "achievement" is usually associated with the positive. In your case, that is not so.
These are stories of rebuilding, and of innovation. Stories of communities breathing new life into old roads and bridges, of local plants harnessing alternative fuel into new energy. Stories of small businesses getting up, dusting themselves off, and beginning to grow again. Stories of soldiers who served multiple tours of duty in Iraq now coming home -- and enjoying the holidays this year in the company of loved ones.
These are stories of progress.
They unite us, and they are ours to share.

I have no idea of what is being rebuilt, but if you mean our great nation is being "reconstructed", on that point we can agree. As for innovation, Mr. President? Innovation is discouraged by your regime, strangled in the cradle by burdensome regulations and suffocating scrutiny. And please give one example of a small business, any small business, dusting themselves off and growing. 

Regarding the returning soldiers enjoying being home for the holidays, I will have to take your word on that, as your New World media only sees fit to report when an American soldier "abuses" an enemy warrior. Feel-good reporting is a thing of the past where our military is concerned.

The reforms that we fought long and hard for are not talking points.
And their effects don't change based on the whims of politicians in Washington. They are achievements that have a real and meaningful impact on the lives of Americans around the country. They are achievements that would not have been possible without you. PROGRESS localizes them -- and brings them to life.  
Again, Sir, I cannot make it any clearer that I am not a supporter, nor did I fight for any of your reforms. I fought against them, only to be ignored. The vast majority of the electorate has likewise been ignored as your agenda has rolled inexorably forward much akin to a Tienanmen Square tank, slowed only by the Tea Party movement. That movement, I might add, was at the root of your opposition and not the "whims of politicians in Washington". Some of them still do listen to the People.
It tells of how a green technology business in Phoenix, Arizona, is using a grant through the Recovery Act's Transportation Electrification program to bring the first electric-drive vehicles and charging stations to cities around the country.

Mr. President, precisely what is it that you think generates electricity? Do really purport to claim that these electric vehicles, dependent on traditional fuel sources to provide their charges, will be better for the planet? And are you really still attaching your agenda to the crumbling global warming bandwagon? Please, strike me from your mailing list, OK?
It tells how, thanks to closing the "donut hole" in prescription drug coverage, a diabetic woman in Burlington, Vermont will no longer have to choose between purchasing her monthly groceries or the insulin she needs to survive.
 That's actually a pretty good one. It leaves me wondering if her nutritional choices would lead to an exclusion in the new Obama Care plan, where Michelle may deem her unfit for benefits due to poor diet.
It tells about how 136,000 Pennsylvania residents' jobs were saved or created by the Recovery Act.
How what? Wait a minute! What the hell does that even mean?  I tried to ignore the earlier reference to the Recovery Act, but no, you couldn't let it go. OK. What did the Recovery Act actually do, Mr. President? What was "recovered"? Certainly, no argument can be made that our anemic economy has recovered. No proof can be offered that a single job has been saved. And to have the temerity to use the word "created"? Really?!?

And about how, thanks to the Affordable Care Act, 22,900 small businesses in Utah's 2nd Congressional District are now eligible for health care tax credits -- and how 17,500 residents in Idaho's 1st with pre-existing conditions can no longer be denied coverage.
There are thousands more stories like these.
In the coming days, as we gather with our loved ones at dinner tables around the nation, let's pass them on. Let's celebrate the spirit of service and responsibility that brought them to fruition. And let's steady ourselves with the resolve to continue pressing forward.
With one last breath - or stroke on my keyboard, as the case may be - I beseech thee to cease and desist from these insidious emails. I can say with great conviction that this holiday season, as my family gathers at the dinner table, we will be passing on little more than meat and vegetables. (Please put in a good word with Michelle, won't you?)

Our conversation, however, will center more on grabbing the line, digging in our heels, and resisting your pressing "forward", by pulling with all of our might until more can arrive to grab the line and help not only slow your "forward progress", but to ultimately reverse its course.

Of special note, this odd disclaimer was at the bottom of each intrusion:

Paid for and authorized by the Democratic National Committee,
This communication is not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee.

Democratic National Committee, 430 S. Capitol St. SE, Washington, DC 20003

Contributions or gifts to the Democratic National Committee are not deductible as charitable contributions for federal income tax purposes.

"Paid for and authorized..." , how much did our government spend on free email???


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Thursday, December 16, 2010

Homogeneous Tea Party? Never!

March of the Plain Soldiers
This is for anyone who has recently been referred to as a "domestic threat" or a hate-mongering, right wing extremist. I feel your pain, brothers and sisters, but have no fear, there is a new Sheriff of Mediocrity poised to seize the brass ring of blandness with a level of excitement not witnessed since Pat Paulsen ran for President of the United States.

They are the group "No Labels", a consortium of like-minded individuals passionately committed to accept without question virtually anything the government wishes to inflict upon them. Their slogan is "No Left, No Right, Forward", and their doctrine is to firmly refuse to take a stand on any issue. Other than labels, of course. Labels are bad.

A simple Google search for this raucous new venture will reward the viewer with all the thrills of an Amish barn-raising and inspire chills to rival a summer in the Sahara. Or perhaps a more accurate assessment would be the comparison to trying to choose the right medication from the medicine cabinet after all of the labels have been removed from the bottles. Maybe the more adventurous would prefer the analogy of a plethora of cleaning products similarly unidentified. "Will I or won't I explode?" Brr.

After a year of terrifying displays at a multitude of Tea Party events in the past year, now we have the specter of No Labels looming on the horizon. Imagine wandering harmlessly into a gathering of several dozen people, unwittingly, and discovering too late that they are No Labellers? What a horror as they approach in a small group, muttering inaudibly and inanimately that they plan on taking no actions when they reach you? Please, try not to have nightmares because of this scenario.

OK, enough with the frivolity. While it is great fun to ridicule the "moderates", I do not believe that this gang will maintain such a philosophy for long. In fact, I doubt that they are moderates at all, but are merely masquerading as such as a means to diminish the mood of a large majority of Americans who genuinely are upset over what our government has been up to lately. In other words, No Labels is a poser group.

Their primary goal will be revealed in short time as nothing more than an attempt to counter the Tea Party movement, perhaps the most successful grass roots effort this country has ever seen. The efforts by every entity - from the alleged mainstream media to the Department of Homeland Security - to marginalize the Tea Party have failed, as they were all based on lies. So now this new campaign has materialized.

If you can't beat 'em, join 'em, as the old saying goes. Or, in this case, pretend to be less vitriolic and more reasonable. But one can't possibly be reasonable with those who refuse to listen to reason. True moderates' only conviction is that they have none. These Label folks have some, or they would never have been able to organize anything. Interesting, then, that they want us to go along to get along; to move Forward.

Where is "forward" is the question most on my mind these days, however. Where is that place we are being asked to follow them into, and what happens when we get there? Exploration is for science, not for societies. Therefore, I don't want to stand by and wait to see what happens when we explore fiscal and judicial experiments. Besides, history teaches that tinkering with the successful formula eventually destroys it.

The Tea Party embraces the principles of our success as a nation. Opponents mockingly ask what would have happened if we had resisted the efforts of Christopher Columbus or any similar brave pioneers who have allowed for the advancement of humanity. (Oddly, these same Liberals denounce the Space Program as a waste of money, despite the enormous medical and technological benefits over the past half century as a result).

Regardless of the argument, I still maintain that we are better served as a people when we calmly and respectfully resist the radical transformation of our greatness through firm and active participation despite the ridicule heaped upon us. It is better than succumbing to the whims of the elite "intellectuals", as the Stepford Wives approach endorsed by No Labels would have us believe.

I refuse to be homogenized. How about you? Got milk?

(Special hat tip to Sleeping Giant)

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Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Spendaholics: Why the Tax Cut Compromise Was Necessary

The Triad of Redistribution
In 2009, the 111th United States Congress passed H.R. 1105, otherwise known as the Omnibus Appropriations Act, 2009, and it was considered a massive expansion of government spending at a time when the deficits were mounting rapidly. At $410 billion, it contained $8 billion in pork.

It was one year ago, December of 2009. It was also long before the government heard the loud shouts of "STOP!" from the electorate in the form of voting this past November. No matter, the lame-duck session of Congress - a collection of soon-to-be-unemployed politicians - have decided to have one last laugh on the American people.

Not only did the mobility-impaired water fowl ignore the people this year, they have upped the ante, significantly. This December - today, in fact - the Congressional leadership dumped upon its membership a nearly 2,000-page bill calling for a new omnibus spending package of $1.1 trillion. Yes, trillion, with a "T". At 1,924 pages, the spending proposal amounts to nearly $572 million per page. While that may stun some people, there is more. Much more.

The Republican side of the aisle, according to Minority leader Mitch McConnell, knew nothing about this bill until it was plopped before them. Even more stunning is that the disabled drakes want an immediate vote.

Here's why this is so important, as if there were a need for further explanation. While the outrage of such reckless fiscal policy would normally be sufficient on its own, my reasoning for the title should serve to allay the ire of those who stamped their feet at the so-called "Bush tax cut compromise".

If nothing is done, and the taxes are raised again by this administration and current Congress, it is estimated that an additional $200 billion - seized from the people - will flood the coffers of the federal government, and mushroom to $3.8 trillion over the next ten years. Given what we already have learned of the gluttony of our "public servants", it is unreasonable to expect that increasing the taxes of the American people will ever be applied to reducing the deficit, which is the only reason the people would have for accepting such an injustice.

No, nothing would be gained by these tax hikes other than the further subjugation of even more of the populace and, as a result, increased dependence, which is exactly what the Left wants. Just like the pusher, Liberal politicians know full well that without a dependent constituency, power will be lost. Can't have that, can we?

Even if the omnibus spending bill is not directly related to the tax compromise, it is most assuredly indicative of why a deal was so crucial. Give a little or lose a lot. If you're a young reader, and time still passes slowly for you, I say try to hold on while this plays out until 2012. If you're my age, you already know that two years is but the blink of an eye, and we can weather this storm while holding our breath.

The key is that we can prevent an enormous influx of cash for the Democrats, who would have burned through it faster than General Grant took Richmond. In any event, I maintain that the Republicans still have a grasp on what they're doing. We have mere weeks until we can prevent Obama from further running up the credit card. Hold on.

Have faith.

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Sunday, December 12, 2010

Fair Share of Taxes

Equal is Equal, Period
The disgusting class warfare that continues to rage in this country - waged by Democrats, and applauded by Liberals - is based upon a lie that should be self-evident to even the most politically unaware of our citizens. Yet all it takes is to read the comments after any article dealing with taxation in America, and it is clear that too many people want to be subsidized by those whom they envy and despise, simply because they themselves have not achieved the same level of success.

We constantly hear the cries of these people demanding that "the rich pay their fair share" of taxes. While that is an annoying and misguided complaint, it is more annoying that the plaintiffs engage in it without the slightest idea of why, other than that they have heard their politicians make the same argument.

Percentages do not lie, however, nor do they discriminate. Therefore, even if the burger-flipper pays the same percentage as the corporate CEO, the actual amount of the remittances is enormously disparate. For the sake of simplicity, we'll use a ten percent federal tax rate, where person A has an annual income of $100,000 and person B has an income of $1,000,000. Person A has a tax liability of $10,000, whereas person B has a tax liability equal to person A's entire income, or $100,000.

There is an incredible irony in our tax codes and the expectations of the alleged champions of the poor. While we are incessantly bombarded from the Left regarding "fairness for all", those same people somehow think that it is perfectly fair for person A to have a ten percent tax liability while saddling person B with a fifty percent burden. When depicted in simple language, the injustice is stark.

Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont
For example, how is taking one tenth of one person's earnings and one half of another's considered "fair? Senator Bernie Sanders, the self-described Socialist from Vermont, thinks that person B "has enough". Envy, sinful though it may be, is still the prerogative of the individual. But when that individual has the power of confiscation of others' property, it is a dangerous emotion.

What if that individual, in this case Bernie Sanders, should decide that person A also has enough? Who is to say that the person earning half of person A - or $50,000 annually - won't demand some of what person A earns?

The arrogance of our elected officials, Sanders included, in claiming that the government can't afford to allow the people to keep what they earn is stunning and frightening. It has actually gotten to the point where the federal government believes that all money is theirs, and we get some only through the grace of their magnanimity. What is truly frightening in that mindset is the fact that the federal government is insatiable in its need for more and more money.

They show virtually no fiscal restraint, believing that theirs is an endless supply of constituents' cash. Sadly, we have allowed that seed to germinate through passivity, or worse, active participation by an equally envious portion of the population. Those who have succumbed to the seductive notion of a Nanny State, and become conditioned to accept reliance and dependence, have aided and abetted the theft of a nation.

Worse yet, the philosophy of confiscatory Socialism - here in America - has comfortably emerged unashamed from the shadows, parading around like a proud peacock courting a mate. Once there was a time when the proponents of such policy were careful in how they chose to present the ideas, delicately avoiding the overt endorsement of anything Socialist or Communist.

No longer can that be said. Today, we have Bernie Sanders, a member of the United States Senate, proudly wearing the badge of Socialist, and unabashedly expounding on what he considers to be the virtues of such a system. Generation Y, having been subjected to two decades of deprivation of proper education and a healthy dose of counter indoctrination, proudly and ignorantly wear Che Guevara tee shirts and listen to a White House member extol the merits of Mao Tse Tung.

Is it any wonder that the pitchfork-and-torch-bearing mobs rally for the heads of the successful?

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Wednesday, December 8, 2010

A Very Basic Question

By the Grace of Government?
You work hard every day, trying your best to earn a living and provide for your family. 40, 50, or 60 hours of your labor went into earning your salary, and at the end you get two days of "rest", if you're lucky, and a paycheck. So whose money do you receive at the end of the week?

If you had to pause for even a second to think about that, please stop reading right now and join the Communist Party, for you have clearly surrendered more than your earnings. You've also turned your back on your heritage as an American. While most people realize that there is a cost for the seemingly seamless services that their tax dollars buy, the line has been crossed from fees for services to confiscation with a vague promise that - if you behave - those services may be provided with conditions.

The latest debate over whether to "extend the Bush tax cuts" in Washington has been framed in a way that should anger every American. Our politicians - our alleged "public servants" - are busy arguing over how much of our money we can have, but perhaps the most chilling philosophy of the Liberals on the Hill is the arrogant idea that they cannot afford to allow us to keep what we earn.

Do these members of the ruling elite truly think that the American people will tolerate being forced to work for a government allowance, much as we did as children who were cared for by our parents? It may be a bad analogy, since our parents were actually trying to teach our young minds the value of labor for wages. But now our own government wants to continue treating us as children long after the lessons of our parents have been well learned. Though we were at the mercy of what our parents considered a fair wage for the chores they chose for us, they did let us keep all that they paid us.

Another deceitful tactic of the Left in this battle is the mislabelling of the debate, calling the extensions of the Bush-era tax cuts...another tax cut. All an extension will really do is maintain the current tax rates, which have been in place for nearly a decade. So, to be acutely accurate, what the Democrats want to do is basically raise taxes - in the middle of a terrible economy and record unemployment - on the only taxpayers who have the ability to hire workers.

People like Nancy Pelosi don't agree that raising taxes on the employers will hurt the economy. To the contrary, she believes that raising taxes on those who offer jobs will benefit those who don't have one. If you don't see that this will only increase the number of people who don't have a job - and thereby necessitate higher taxes on the job creators - then there is no hope for you.

There can be no question, however, that what the Democrats have been attempting is nothing more than a tax hike in the middle of a recession, something that any economist worth his salt would excoriate as destructive.

Again, while most people realize that in order for a massive society like ours to function, taxation is an excepted way to pay for the services we enjoy. Where the lines of ideology diverge is when we are taxed at ever increasing levels, only to learn that our money is being squandered by a bureaucratic monolith, and spent on monuments to themselves, and silly studies to learn things that will ultimately benefit no one but the recipients of the grants.

The question, then is: whose money is it, anyway? While there is a concerted effort by Liberals to force us to feel ashamed for our so-called greed in wanting to keep what we have worked for, they are simultaneously attempting to use our religious beliefs as a club, reminding us that God would want us to be generous. How ironic that they do this while ripping our holiday symbols away as we carol and donate.

Here's an idea. This Christmas, all I want is to have my country back. I really don't think that is too much to ask, just as is the simple principle of deciding how best to spend and donate that which I have earned. (Here's the hidden answer. It will come in handy on the test. It's my money!)

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Monday, December 6, 2010

This is Our Identity

My greatest fortunes have been my upbringing in a relatively Conservative enclave in what is now surrounded by a sea of electoral blue, and the parents who raised me with common sense. It still took me twenty years to discover that I lived amongst the enemy.

That's right, I said it. If President Barack Hussein Obama can call true Americans "the enemy" on TeleMundo, I am perfectly comfortable in turning the tables, revealing the nefarious intent of those among whom I now reside. That residence may have been my genesis, but I did manage a brief escape in which I experienced life amidst real people and true Americans. I learned much, and discovered my values as a very young man.

Antithetical to my geographic proximity, I'd always harbored an affinity for classical music and, even more strangely, bluegrass. Being born and raised in New York, a mere sixty miles from Manhattan, one would naturally assume that I would absorb the mentality of the Lib City, but that never happened. Out here, we remained insulated from the insanity of our urban neighbors, and for that I shall be eternally grateful.

It didn't hurt, either, that shortly after graduating high school, I moved to Georgia for six years. Even though I was certainly no city boy, the move terrified me, coming on the heels of the movie Macon County Line. I was convinced that my cousin and I would get pulled over on I-95 and brutalized in a southern jail just for the crime of being "Yankees". That didn't happen, and I was more at home in the South than I was up North. And one of the best friends I had there was a bonafide country boy from way out in the woods.

What was funny about Steve at first was that he assumed I'd have one of those hard-core New York accents, which I never did, even as a child. I, on the other hand, automatically assumed that he would be knowledgeable about pickup trucks and shooting guns - which he was - but he was also a very intelligent man  and a deliberate thinker. The only cliché that could possibly be applied to Steve was the slowness of action renowned in the South.

I learned much more during my time in Georgia about the American fiber than I probably would have by remaining sequestered on Long Island, as many of my classmates and friends did. I have no doubt that I would have learned it eventually through age-acquired wisdom, but I benefited from Georgia - and Steve - at a very early age. The lessons stick with me to this day. It is probably one of the reasons I get so annoyed when limousine Liberals denigrate "fly-over" country as inhabited by stupid people. When the lights go out, we'll see who needs whom the most.

I have another cousin who grew up here in the Liberal bastion of the Empire State, and who permanently migrated to the deep South many years ago. He has been a birdie in my ear for a few years, warning of the imminent collapse of our society and the resultant exodus of starving, helpless Liberals streaming out of the big cities - like so many mindless, voracious zombies - in search of sustenance.

It is a shame that the people of this country have allowed themselves to become so segregated by their government that they may eventually end up killing one another over something that was once taken for granted; food. It must also be noted that food is still plentiful in this country, so long as one knows how to hunt it and prepare it for consumption. The tragedy lies in the fact that nearly half of our population - perhaps more - have lost that basic skill through the soothing reassurances that government would always provide.

And so I return to my point about bluegrass music. Inner city denizens may roll their eyes and giggle at the very mention of it, but the music is a wonderful celebration of our original frontier spirit. The lyrics are pure inspiration, and the melodies are a delight even when no vocals are necessary. Choctaw Hayride is a prime example. If you can sit perfectly still while listening, please let me know. Enjoy.

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