Thought You'd Never Ask

Just mouthing off -- because I can.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Things you can do to bring about change

Instapundit's readers have some great suggestions--besides joining your local Tea Party organization, which I have done (they are active and on top of these things and so much more, including Constitutional education).

To find a local tea party group, check with:

Americans for Prosperity

Tea Party Express (which incidentally, pulled off a pretty big event this weekend) UPDATE: More photos of the tea party in Searchlight, Nevada (via Instapundit)

"But will Republican politicians keep their promises once back in power?" We must make sure they do, which means our work is not done after November 2010.

PLUS THIS (also from Instapundit): Pirate radio. Is this the future of Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh, if Net Neutrality and the Fairness Doctrine ever take hold? "Just giving a voice to the community..." When tyranny and regulation become overpowering, freedom breaks out in the form of lawbreaking. Or, as Ayn Rand said,

"There's no way to rule innocent men.
The only power government has is the power to crack down on criminals.
Well, when there aren't enough criminals, one makes them.
One declares so many things to be a crime
that it becomes impossible for men to live without breaking laws."


Sunday, March 28, 2010

A letter to my United Methodist Church

So I thought about it all. And here is what I'm dropping in the collection plate later this morning:

To My Church:

Last Sunday evening while watching Congress pass the health care reform bill on C-Span, I saw Speaker Nancy Pelosi thank the United Methodist Church for being especially instrumental in supporting the Democrats’ efforts and in helping to pass the bill. I was shocked and appalled that my Church would 1) be so inappropriately politically involved in this divisive, partisan legislation, and 2) be singled out as actively supporting policies, processes, and goals I believe are not only immoral, but which will prove to be destructive to the health, wealth, and safety of our nation and all our fellow citizens, including the poor, the young, the old, the powerless, and the unborn. Since then, I have educated myself as to the role the United Methodist Church has played in this and in other political matters.

Today I regret I must rescind the balance of my annual pledge to my United Methodist home church, since there seems to be no mechanism in place to assure me that my financial support will not end up in the hands of our denomination’s leadership determined to promote damaging socialist and even Marxist aims in the name of Christ, God, and Methodism. I regret that because of our leadership’s actions I am no longer able to support the good work that the United Methodist Church has done around the country and around the world.

I will continue to support my home church's building fund, the pastor’s discretionary fund, and other local charities I hope will do what’s best for needy people in the name of God, as Christ taught us. And of course I will continue to pray for our church and our nation.

In the mail: Taking Back the United Methodist Church by Mark Tooley.

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Thursday, March 25, 2010

Laughing in the storm

Here are three things that made me laugh out loud in the past two days:

1. This book and its great title: Obama Zombies: How the Liberal Machine Brainwashed My Generation by Jason Mattera

2. This book and its equally felicitous title: That's No Angry Mob, That's My Mom: Team Obama's Assault on Tea-Party, Talk Radio Americans by Michael Graham

3. The inscription on this tombstone of a Civil War veteran. It looks Photoshopped, but hell, you can Photoshop that on my tombstone, too.

Hat tips to whoever mentioned these things, I can't remember. Ace, Insty, American Digest, PowerLine...

BONUS: Another antidote to gathering darkness in these degenerate times is provided by some fine musical artists reminiscent of the Weimar and 1930's Hollywood: Max Raabe and the Palast Orchester and The Comedian Harmonists. Try this.

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Obamacare and the United Methodist Church

I am one of many Methodists who were shocked, appalled, and incensed to hear Nancy Pelosi thank the United Methodist Church for helping pass Obamacare last Sunday night. I knew the top leadership of my denomination was left-leaning (fortunately my home church stays admirably silent on overt politicizing). But this current issue hits too close to home for me to remain complacent and compliant. These politics will hurt too many innocent Americans--i.e. the 85% who are taking care of business and satisfied with their health care, including me and my family. (" I am one of the many millions who are outraged at the Left's attempt to destroy the private health care system that has served my family so well..." as John Hinderaker says.) It is clear that this particular bill will have a LOT of bad and hurtful consequences, not to mention continuing to polarize and inflame our country instead of unite it in common cause to reform and heal.

It is not a question of good guys who want to help people vs. bad guys who do not. All sides have good intentions and want the best for the country. But not all sides have the best solutions, and Obamacare is a dismal plague headed our way, a slow-motion trainwreck about to consume our country. I have to stand up and protest, and say that the leadership of my church does not speak for me. And I am furious that it would purport to do so in this.

Mark Tooley has said:

Traditional Christians and Jews have understood that Providence has a vital vocation for families, religious institutions, private business, independent charities, and a whole range of non-government actors. Traditionally, they have believed that the government only does, to paraphrase Lincoln, what the people cannot do for themselves. But the old Religious Left, joined increasingly by Evangelical Left wannabes, leaves almost no civic space for the private sphere. In their almost totalitarian perspective, the state is an endless cornucopia of goods and services providing for every human need. Families, churches, businesses and charities become almost inconsequential, or are, at best, mere compliant hand maidens to an all powerful government. Most religious people would find this fantasy nightmarish. But this nightmare animates nearly all the social justice activism of religious leftists....

Signers of this “Call for Political Courage, Vision, Leadership, and Faith” include officials of the Episcopal, Presbyterian USA, Evangelical Lutheran, United Church of Christ, and United Methodist denominations, along with Jim Wallis’ Sojourners, Evangelicals for Social Action, the National Council of Churches, Quakers, Mennonites, left-wing Catholic orders like the Maryknollers, a couple Muslim groups and several Jewish organizations. Some of these groups, or at least their elites, have very little theology any more. But they are increasingly unified behind a single unifying spiritual principle: worshipping at the altar of the state.

Anthony G. Martin writes:

Syndicated columnist Walter E. Williams, professor of economics at George Mason University, said it best when he opined, 'For me to voluntarily open my pockets to help the poor and needy is a worthy and honorable act of human compassion. But for you to reach inside my pockets and take my money to do so is stealing for which somebody should go to jail.'

Yesterday we were treated to the news that some of the nation's religious leaders had been recruited by Obama to promote his plan for a government takeover of healthcare.

And they gladly jumped on board like giddy sailors ready for another voyage into the exciting seas of political activism.

Although many are quick to condemn rightwing, evangelical groups for 'taking their faith into the political marketplace,' Leftwing religious groups are given a pass in the mainstream media when they engage in overt political activity.

After all, when they do it, it is 'a moral obligation,' or so they would have us believe....

By sitting in my church pew each Sunday and contributing to the collection plate, am I helping to further these totalitarian visions--in my name?

Here is a round-up of some of the news I have discovered:

"Health care bill's passage called 'huge step' toward affirming United Methodist social principles" (more like socialist principles, if you ask me).

"How did the UMC come to define health care as a 'right'?" (not a pretty process--and not unlike the machinations of Congress)

"Pelosi hails church agency on health reform" (congratulatory pats on the back all around. I don't recall us Methodists being asked to weigh in on this. Meanwhile, more Methodists in Congress voted NO than voted Yes)

The Congressman who was allegedly spat upon is a United Methodist Minister (allegedly) UPDATE: Tempest in a tea party teapot. It was a set-up.

The UMC had a history of vilifying George Bush (a Methodist) for his policies:

Despite his Christian example, his reliance upon the United Methodist Church's preferred political body to enforce its own resolutions with regard to Iraq, and his unwillingness as the leader of state to repeat the mistakes of Munich in appeasing those who openly threaten and the mistakes of his predecessor in ignoring the clear warnings and acts of war upon the United States by Islamic jihad, the United Methodist Church chose to single out one man for the world's ills: George W. Bush, United Methodist.

The UMC has been against Stupak and supportive of abortion for a long time (they think 'health care is a right,' and that publicly-funded abortions are more health care than eugenics or murder, evidently)

Obamacare: A Social Justice Nightmare for the Whole World: "Killing opportunities for charity may fit perfectly with the Marxist-oriented Kumbayah Fallacy, but it proves a diabolical mockery of the doctrines on genuine Social Justice." (If even my 14-year-old can see this, why can't the bishops?)

Maybe it's time to become Amish. Seriously, many commenters are advocating that Methodists seek out non-denominational churches more suitable for Christians who are not statists, leftists, or Marxists and who no longer wish to lend their unwilling support to those unworkable and immoral ideas.

I have traditionally been proud that my denomination, the United Methodist Church, did so much good for so many people around the world. Now, feeling I have no control over exactly what the ruling philosophy and ultimate aim of its do-goodism is, and knowing that it is often actually bent toward what I am diametrically opposed to for its immoral nature, I don't feel I can lend my unqualified support any more. In fact, I feel duty-bound to protest and speak out.

Incidentally, if my church is now politicking in Washington alongside Nancy Pelosi, shouldn't it lose its religious tax-exempt status?

UPDATE: An antidote to leftwing hijackers of my religious denomination? -- The Institute on Religion & Democracy is on the case. I will find out more about this.

UPDATE: Nancy Pelosi's triumphant Palm Sunday message to Glide UMC in San Francisco.

UPDATE: is a great website that keeps up with all of these developments and more within the United Methodist Church. Here is there summary and update on the health care bill debacle. Many Methodists are steaming--and leaving the church.

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Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Making the case for the Fair Tax

Here is another rebuttal to a recent critique in National Review of the Fair Tax. It is still a viable alternative to the horrific income tax situation we have now. I like this passage especially:

The current tax code is, in fact, so complicated that just filling out the legally required paperwork cost Americans more than $300 billion last year. The complexity is the main reason the government comes up more than $350 billion short of what is owed every year. This truth is again unfairly missing when the writer speculates on the potential losses through cheating a national consumption tax.

When it comes to the income tax, everyone agrees that “something must be done,” and yet “something” never gets done.

The reason for this also goes unmentioned and conspicuously ignored by Mr. Ponnuru. The code has been corrupted by years of congressional manipulation driven by both profit and power. There is little inclination to fundamentally change an unfair system that is so beneficial to so many lobbyists, tax experts, and members of Congress, including some quoted by Mr. Ponnuru. This unmentioned nest-feathering now lives at the heart of our national tax system and results in harm to both the overall economy and individual taxpayers.

If we can just get over the idea that nothing can ever be done to reform our bloated, corrupt tax system, which benefits so many corruptocrats, lobbyists, and social engineers in Washington, and throw our intelligence and will behind the Fair Tax (as so many seem willing and able to do), we might really experience some Hope and Change.

By the way, you can join the Online Tax Revolt here and virtually march to Washington for Tax Day, April 15th.


What to tell our kids about Obamacare

Bookworm has an excellent dialog with her middle-school-aged daughter about Obamacare (inspired by a teacher talking about it at school). I'm sharing this with my daughter, too. Although my daughter already figured out by herself that if you dump millions of new people into a health system without proper incentives your are rapidly going to find yourself with fewer doctors and higher costs. Since my daughter hears about economics fairly frequently, she already understands supply and demand.

"Honey," I told her. "At 14 you are already smarter than Obama."

I suggest all parents print out Bookworm's "little talk" and not only share it with your children, but send it to your school's PTA newsletter, or drop a copy off with your principal.

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Monday, March 22, 2010

Forced to buy "insurance"--the individual mandate

"More important than the details of this bill, the mandate destroys one of the last bastions of individual autonomy in this society....

"It truly amazes me that the left-wing of the Democratic Party, which foams at the mouth at the thought that the NSA might intercept a phone call from someone in the U.S. to a known al-Qaeda operative in Pakistan, is so willing to hand over to the government the power to control the most personal aspect of our lives."

I agree with Professor Jacobson about the individual mandate. The fact that Obamacare will now force every American to purchase government-approved health insurance (at the point of a gun, basically) is the most unAmerican provision in this dismally appalling monstrosity of a freedom-killing, debt-spiraling bill. Of course President Obama will proudly sign it tomorrow.

Once upon a time I didn't have health insurance. After earning a scholarship and working summers and holidays, I had enough money saved up to attend college on my "own" dime (I thought of it that way then, living on the scholarships and stipends given to me by the State of California that I had "earned") and I asked my parents to remove me as a dependent from their tax return, to improve my own financial standing as a "poor" student, self-supported. I don't remember if I had health insurance while I attended college and lived off the State, but I think I didn't. Or maybe I had cheap, subsidized insurance for medical emergencies as a UC student. Somehow the private insurance market seemed to produce such things, even before the beneficence of Obamacare came along to save us.

But once I graduated and the student subsidies stopped, I moved to San Francisco and I know I did not have health insurance then because I just could not afford it. I was barely earning enough money to live--to buy food and pay my rent, and pay back my Mom $50 a month for loaning me my first and last months' rent deposit, while I was working temp secretarial jobs, and looking for an entry-level job in the publishing industry. (Such are the prospects of Honors English majors).

Not having health insurance then did not really bother me. Can you believe it? I was young, healthy, immortal, free, and over 21. When I needed medical care, I went to the "free" clinic and paid the bill (subsidized by somebody's charity or municipal goodwill; I never pondered it). I was fortunate I wasn't hit by a trolley car, I suppose. But if I had needed serious emergency help, my parents would've helped me. The point was, I was willing and able to forgo health insurance during that period in order to reach a point on my own where I could get ahead in what I wanted to do. It was my decision and I was happy with it. There were plenty of resources to help me along the way.

Now, thanks to Obamacare, young people won't have that kind of experience of relative autonomy any more, the way previous generations did. They won't be able to know the kind of joy and pride I found in living on my own for the first time in my life, and making my own way, apart from parents and the nanny-state hovering over me. Now young people will have to certify to the government that they have purchased government-approved health "insurance" (the term has now been perverted by Obamacare) that should cost at a minimum $750 per year (a sum I flat-out could not have spared when I was starting out). And if they are so poor as to qualify for a subsidy from Uncle Sam, imagine the questions, the time wasted having to stand in line at bureaucratic offices, taking a number and waiting to be processed by some government functionary who can't possibly know what is best for them. Bend over and fill it out in triplicate. Bow down before your compassionate overlords. The government will know and monitor you, your finances, and your health.

To me, the loss of freedom of choice, the necessity to be infantilized against one's will, and loss of the freedom to be on one's own in the world is one of the worst parts of Obamacare. If some people want or need to choose a nanny-monitor, that's okay with me. But now the people who don't want it won't have a choice.

If you don't think that's a significant loss, you don't know what you're talking about.

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A dark day for Americans

You know how I feel about things. You will excuse me if I express a bit how glum I am this morning in light of the Democrats having passed their power-grab government expansion bill last night in the House. Although I have been listening for years to people like Neal Boortz predict the tipping-point to the end-days of the country when nationalized health care would be passed, I never thought my fellow Americans would really be stupid enough to let that happen. I saw Obama elected last November, the most inexperienced, undereducated, far-leftist, socialist President ever to disgrace the honor of the White House, and all I could do was HOPE he would not be as bad for the country as I dreaded--and as he promised.

This morning I am wondering which of my loved ones, or myself, will be the first to be killed off by the new policies set in motion last night by the gleeful Democrats and their radical Leader. I am wondering how long it will be before I will try to make an appointment with one of our doctors and will be told: "Sorry, no appointments available." I am wondering how many days before we hear from our insurance provider that our benefits are cut and our premiums have skyrocketed--for the duration (before we are dumped and private insurance companies go out of business). I am wondering how long before the economy goes belly-up, our income evaporates, and we or my other loved ones will be the ones waiting in long, long lines and on wait-lists for "access" to inadequate, rationed government "care."

The only "good" thing I can think in visualizing these scenarios is that the Democrats will be rightfully blamed and eternally harassed for all the unintended and horrible consequences they have now brought us. Maybe they will soon be tossed out of power, and the Republicans may try to roll some provisions back. But pointing fingers, and hoping for salvation from politicians, while sometimes emotionally satisfying, doesn't help put bread on the table.

The Republicans (and non-political conservatives, libertarians, independents, Objectivists, etc. including me) must accept--and really internalize--the blame for not having worked hard enough in the past. The Republican Party, backed by more and vocal voters, should have done more to detect and appropriately accommodate the will of the American people by putting Medicare (and Social Security) on a stable, fiscally-sound footing, and dealing with the problem of patients with pre-existing conditions, etc., points that the Democrats have demagogued so well. You have to hand it to the Democrats--they worked hard. In the last year, seemingly only in response to the Democrat leadership, the Republicans came up with much better alternatives for health care and health insurance reform to offer the American people. Their performance when they had power was in retrospect pathetic for its lost opportunities. Is this a lesson they can learn? Do they have the backing of enough Americans to give them political will and effectiveness now?

In the recent few months Republicans have acted splendidly in standing together in adultlike, rational, and principled opposition to the Democrats' insane and childlike, reckless meglomania for government-run healthcare. I have been impressed with them, especially in their speeches last night. But Republicans could have dealt with the health care issues that have plagued Americans long before this--while they had control of Congress and the Presidency. For whatever reasons (and I do remember Bush trying and failing in the face of Democrat opposition to put the Social Security entitlement onto a stable footing), they ultimately failed--as they failed in cleaning up Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae. They gave up, gave in, were distracted and unfocused and uninterested in taking this country where it needed to be. Their (and our) failure to act effectively in the past has helped bring about this dark day when Democrats now cram this bitter poison down the throat of my country, with 16,000+ new IRS agents to enforce that we swallow.

There may be silver linings I can think of as time goes on. I am grateful the bill does not yet go as far as the more socialist Democrats want. I am grateful there are so many Americans now committed to conservative activism, as am I. I can only hope that while Americans may not be as farsighted or as morally or economically literate as I would desire, when they finally see a big problem looming in front of them, they can and will tackle it like nobody's business. I hope it is not too late and I hope we have not just had our hands too firmly tied to get out of this jam.

Unfortunately when leaders want to spread the wealth, they end up spreading the pain, suffering, and death. We need to wake more people up to that stark truth.

P.S. I am also dismayed and incensed to learn that my church, the United Methodist Church, has been lobbying in support of the Democrats' health care proposals and against the Stupak Amendment. So this is another huge disappointment to me and another area in which I (and others) will have to apply pressure and protest, and work harder. Evidently the "Religious Left" has taken firm control of my own church, just as the left has seemingly taken control of our schools and a great deal of our media. Maybe it is no longer my church. I'll have to see.

UPDATE: Citizens stepping forward--this man is running against Stupak. Send him a donation. (Via Ace)

UPDATE: Things We Were Told We Couldn't Do (and did).

Get to work.

UPDATE: Dear GOP: Fight (a brilliant pep talk) and FirePelosi

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Sunday, March 21, 2010

Today they vote to dismantle our health care system

The House will vote today in Washington on whether to pass the Senate's version of Obamacare. Here is the general schedule of what will happen, and you can watch it on C-Span. At this time nobody knows if the Democrats have enough votes to pass this partisan power grab (no Republicans are stupid enough to vote "Yes"). The bipartisan coalition is on the "No" side, along with the majority of the American people and the states.

Who's the real winner in this scheme? The IRS, for one:

*IRS agents verify if you have “acceptable” health care coverage;

* IRS has the authority to fine you up to $2,250 or 2 percent of your income (whichever is greater) for failure to prove that you have purchased “minimum essential coverage;”

* IRS can confiscate your tax refund;

* IRS audits are likely to increase;

* IRS will need up to $10 billion to administer the new health care program this decade;

* IRS may need to hire as many as 16,500 additional auditors, agents and other employees to investigate and collect billions in new taxes from Americans; and

* Nearly half of all these new individual mandate taxes will be paid by Americans earning less than 300 percent of poverty ($66,150 for a family of four.)

That's just SOME of the New Order and Hope and Change that lurks in this 2,000+ page abomination that they have to pass "so that you can find out what's in it." (Here are a few more provisions.) Of course, some people see clearly what will happen: "By its built-in logic, Obamacare will cause the health care industry to go bankrupt within months."

Thank goodness there are some Democrats not willing to doom our country and commit political suicide just to spit-polish Obama's already tainted (and fast-sinking) Presidency. I hope there are enough of them to ensure this abortion of a legislation does not pass.

Today's meditation: on Two Americas. I think this came about because Americans were complacent, fat, and happy with post-WWII wealth and ususpectingly let the Marxists take over the government-run education system.

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Saturday, March 20, 2010

Resisting the government takeover

In Washington, D.C., a lot of people showed up today to protest the Federal government's unseemly, insane, and reckless dismantling of our current healthcare system and the private insurance industry. Others turned out elsewhere around the nation--Boston, San Diego, St. Louis, Salt Lake City...

Americans are continuing to call Congress and say "KILL THE BILL."

At the state level, Americans are starting to protect themselves from Federal government encroachment on liberties.

Lawsuits will be filed against the unConstitutional process, the illegal procedures, and the unConstitutional provisions.

We will not give up without a fight, and the fight is far from over. Our country is too precious to turn it over to the unprincipled scum bumbling around the halls of Congress and the White House right now.

UPDATE: Report from the San Diego protest via Gateway Pundit; also the St. Louis protest and the ones in Nashville and Boston. Also here an update on the allegations of racist slurs from tea partiers. From The Corner, photos from the Washington rally (impressive, no matter what the crowd count was). These are my fellow Americans and I am proud to stand with them in defending our liberties and our country's future.

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Insurance industry employees out of work

There are more (and will be even more) people like Ingrid Martin, put out of work by Obama's policies.

Meanwhile, look at the sleazy policies Democrats are using to pass Obamacare (explained in 90 seconds). Share this quick video as an easy way to catch up your oblivious, short-attention-span friends on what's going on this weekend in Washington.

What's also going on in Washington this weekend: protests by taxpayers, anti-statists, and anti-war Marxists.

Yes, Obama is the most transformative President ever, bringing the American people together at last. How audacious is that?

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Friday, March 19, 2010

"They have health coverage but can't find a doctor."

It's pretty clear that this will be the conclusion of the story in our country if Obamacare passes.

How can the Democrats ignore this evidence? And why do they? Think, Americans.

"Do you know what it takes to perform a brain operation? Do you know the kind of skill it demands, and the years of passionate, merciless, excruciating devotion that go to acquire that skill? That was what I would not place at the disposal of men whose sole qualification to rule me was their capacity to spout the fraudulent generalities that got them elected to the privilege of enforcing their wishes at the point of a gun. I would not let them dictate the purpose for which my years of study had been spent, or the conditions of my work, or my choice of patients, or the amount of my reward. I observed that in all the discussions that preceded the enslavement of medicine, men discussed everything--except the desires of the doctors. Men considered only the 'welfare' of the patients, with no thought for those who were to provide it. That a doctor should have any right, desire or choice in the matter, was regarded as irrelevant selfishness; his is not to choose, they said, only 'to serve.' . . .

"I have often wondered at the smugness with which people assert their right to enslave me, to control my work, to force my will, to violate my conscience, to stifle my mind—yet what is it they expect to depend on when they lie on an operating table under my hands? Their moral code has taught them to believe that it is safe to rely on the virtue of the victims. Well, that is the virtue I have withdrawn. Let them discover the kind of doctors their system will now produce. Let them discover, in their operating rooms and hospital wards, that it is not safe to place their lives in the hands of a man whose life they have throttled. It is not safe, if he is the sort of man who resents it—and still less safe, if he is the sort who doesn’t.”

-- From Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand

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Thursday, March 18, 2010

America Our Heritage

Part of what the American Dream means to me personally is the freedom to travel and enjoy my homeland. Because my parents and my husband’s parents, and their parents before them, were avid automobile road-trippers from way back, my husband and I were lucky enough to travel cross-country along the now-legendary Route 66 during our childhoods. It was an indelible and life-shaping experience for both of us.

I grew up in a small-town "Lilacville" in Upstate New York, and I will never forget my first big roadtrip and especially my first look at The West: waking up in the backseat of my Dad’s DeSoto and blinking out at the sunrise-lit, cactus-studded Texas oilfields. That summer I saw for the first time the Grand Canyon, the Painted Desert, the Petrified Forest, the Pacific Ocean, and countless other exotic yet quintessentially American landmarks. Since then my husband and I have continued the tradition of traveling by car with our children and introducing them to these United States, in all of their diverse and supersized glory. I have now visited 47 states, all the Great Lakes (except for Lake St. Clair), and have been in probably over 100 national parks, national forests, and national recreational or historic areas. It is a fabulous heritage to enjoy.

As I travel this country I love so much, one song keeps playing in my head. I learned it back in Lilacville, as I was taught it in public elementary school and sang it (in harmony) with my sister in a performance by our elementary school chorus. The words seem to sum up all I feel, even at this late date, about our country:

High towering mountains, fields gold with grain,
Rich, fertile farmlands, flocks on the plain,
Homes blessed with peace, with love, without fears;
This is the heritage we’ve kept through the years.

Wide rolling prairies, lakes deep and broad,
Canyons majestic, fashioned by God,
Life lived in peace, contented and free:
This is the heritage forever to be.

STOP. “This is the heritage forever to be?”

Sad to say, this is no longer a line I can sing or think with any assurance.

In this 21st century and especially in this Age of Obama and Democrats focused on “transforming” the America I grew up in, it is no longer clear that we will be able to enjoy the freedoms we have known and that our forefathers and our military fought to preserve: The freedom of a life of prosperity for ourselves and our children, fueled by a robust free market with lots of choices and opportunities and minimal Federal oversight, red tape, or debt. The freedom not to fear the taking of our property by a perverse government run amok (as in the Kelo case) or by excessive and/or hidden taxation. The freedom to choose our own doctors, our own medical care, our own insurance. The freedom to own the car of our choice, and be able to afford the fuel to go where and when we like with our families. Heck, we don’t even have the freedom to buy incandescent light bulbs (after 2014) or to sing such a song mentioning God anymore in our public schools. Next to go: the freedom to boat or fish in recreational waters? The freedom to live in a home that’s not “green” (as certified by the EPA)? How much of the American Dream are our Washington overlords going to chip away, overtly or covertly, whether we stand with them or stand against them?

I am more worried by what the leftist Democrats and complicit Republicans in Washington D.C. are doing to our country than I ever worried about the Soviet Union during the Cold War. The land I loved may not be the heritage we end up with.

In any event, we need to rededicate ourselves to the final verse of my song:

Stout hearts and true hold fast what is ours
God give us courage through darkest hours.
God give us strength and guide with thy hand
America, our heritage, our homeland.

It remains to be seen if enough people are still interested in singing this song, or maintaining our American heritage. Sometimes it seems like too many people are happy singing "Mmmm, mmm, mmm!"

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Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Calling Congress--will they listen?

Today Americans from all over the U.S. have traveled to Washington (yet again) to protest the Democrats' takeover of the U.S. health care system and the dismantling of our private health insurance industry.

I wish I could be there, but I live too far away to do that right now. Instead I am calling Congressmen and Congresswomen. I have never spoken to or called any Congresspeople before this week. Now I have contacted not only my own representatives, but am in the process of telephoning representatives from other states. Why? Certainly I don't enjoy doing it, and there are many things I would rather be doing, but nothing as important this week needs to be done as calling Congresspeople and saying, "Vote NO."

Here's my message:

I am calling to ask you to vote NO on the current health care legislation before Congress. I represent myself, my husband, and my mother, who agree with me, and I also am calling on behalf of my children. We feel our future well-being is at stake and lies within your hands. We do not want to see our country's health care delivery system or our private insurance endangered by the current mess of a bill that the Democrat leadership is trying to cram through Congress without any bipartisan support and without the support of the majority of Americans. We want reform of our health care system, but this bill is a mess and this process is just plain wrong.

Please start over and craft a bill that offers real solutions that everyone can recognize--including Republicans, Democrats, independents, and the majority of the American people. This bill is not it. This bill will harm us all. It will end up reflecting badly on the Democratic Party for years to come. Here are just a few of the reasons why:

--We can't pay for it. You know the books are cooked on this bill and we know it too.

--The bill is probably unconstitutional and will be challenged in the courts and resisted by states and citizens every step of the way. Why put our country through that? For what?

--The bill won't help Americans for years, but it will start taxing and hurting Americans immediately.

--The bill won't stimulate the economy, it will hurt the economy. It will disincentivize doctors and innovative research and technology and make health care more expensive and harder to get.

--The bill has all kinds of kickbacks, dirty deals, and unsuspected landmines in it that you know yourself you are ashamed to admit or be associated with.

--Contrary to law, the bill funds abortions with taxpayer dollars, even though our President has lied and said it doesn't. We are not stupid--do you expect us to be?

It seems absurd that I, who live a thousand or more miles away from your office and your home district, must call you and beg and plead that you not vote to take away my family's choices in freemarket health care. Yet this is the position you have put me, and my fellow Americans in. We are not happy about this. We will be even less happy if this abominable mess of a bill passes.

Please resist the mad rush to some short-sighted political legacy that seems to be blindly driving President Obama, Speaker Pelosi, and Senator Reid. You do not have to be their lackey and do their bidding or submit to their arm-twisting or dirty deals if your constituents and the American people have your back. Stand up for what is right and insist that the whole country agree with you when you tackle reforming our health care. THAT is the American way.

I hope Congress will listen and find some sense before it's too late. I have a feeling that if this terrible bill passes and becomes law, Democrats will not long be able to be proud of what they've wrought.


UPDATE: Keep trying!


Sunday, March 14, 2010

What Al Gore really wants

By Ed Cline, a most brilliant explanation of what drives Al Gore when he says that "wishing" about "climate change" won't make it go away. There are so many good paragraphs in this piece, too many to quote, but this one gets to the heart of things:

One can write the most eloquent defense of laissez-faire, free markets, market efficiency, fiscal responsibility, and so on -- but the creatures who inhabit government now do not really care how sound and unanswerable such proofs are. Destruction is their sole aim, and destruction they mean to bring about -- with no goal beyond that, except, perhaps, the sadistic pleasure of seeing vanquished Americans inhabit the desolate ruins of their country.
Don't believe that of your fellow Americans? Read Ed's piece.

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Friday, March 12, 2010

How to fill out your Census Form

"So for next week, remember: Question 9 on your census form — check "Some other race" and write in "American." You're doing nothing wrong. And you may help set something right."



Tuesday, March 09, 2010

We must do whatever it takes to stop Obamacare

From Gateway Pundit:

We are only 10 days away (or less!) from the final vote on ObamaCare. If the House votes yes on the Senate bill that is now before it, THE GAME IS OVER. Since the Senate already passed it, once the House passes it on March 18, Obama’s signature on it (which will be immediate) MAKES IT LAW.

We are about to become a Socialist country. For if this passes, it will be virtually unrepealable. Health entitlement programs, once enacted, have proven to be permanent.

Think about it. Ten days from now: Permanent taxpayer funding of abortion. Permanent death panels (yes, those are in the bill), with no appeal of their decisions. Permanent forcing of pro-life doctors to refer for abortions, under penalty of loss of their license to practice. Within five years, no more freedom to buy private policies of your choice (only policies approved by the federal government). Small insurance companies, such as the one that took such incredibly good care of my husband during his illness, will very quickly be permanently out of business.

The Democrats KNOW that nationalizing health care is the single most effective step in making the USA a socialist country. Lenin said it first:


Government health care is not about health care, it's about government takeover of health care

As Paul Ryan says, handing control of Americans' health care over to government is NOT compassionate, and the Democrats and Obamacare have no monopoly on solving the problems we need to solve:

We are urged today—out of compassion—to support the progressive model; but placing control of health care in the hands of government bureaucrats is not compassionate. Bureaucrats don't make decisions about health care according to personal need or preference; they ration resources according to a dollar-driven social calculus. Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, one of the administration's point people on health care, advocates what he calls a “whole life system”—a system in which government makes treatment decisions for individuals using a statistical formula based on average life expectancy and “social usefulness.” In keeping with this, the plans that recently emerged from Congress have a Medicare board of unelected specialists whose job it would be to determine the program's treatment protocols as a method of limiting costs.

This abomination must be stopped.


Thursday, March 04, 2010

"We're terribly house and garden . . . "

I like checking in upon Unhappy Hipsters every once in a while. It makes me laugh, either at the "hip" architecture, "hip" interior decor, "hip" advertising photography, or "hip" writing in the captions. What it parodies, however, has been around for a long time, as has the parodists (this from 1960). Hipsters bring out the best in humorists, I think. I mean, like, wow, man.

Hap tips to American Digest and That Certain Bayesian.


Today's meditation

This man's approach to facing death is inspiring to me, and I would hope, to you. I am a strong believer in that these kinds of testimonies from those who go ahead of us into our final adventure--testimonies that come along simply, unexpectedly, and at the right time into our own lives, are blessings (if we heed them).

Via Power Line.