Up On My Soapbox Again …


Life beyond the TV tray … Supper time, the talking heads are on NBC telling me how good I have it, ABC is reporting “most everyone is dead,” and CBS says “these people are dead right now, they just don’t know it.”  FOX has a hard hitting expose on which Movie Star got out of the limo last night at the awards show sans her underwear. CNN?  Uh huh, don’t even get me started. Continue reading

Old And Cranky

“Now listen up America.  If you are sixty-five and older, with no pre-existing medical problems, we have a plan for you.”  Yeah right, and what planet is it exactly that you hail from?  Give me a break.

A local television channel has this Chef guy, he is on every now and then, whipping up gourmet delights for the summer.  So he says, “You can make this with any sort of nuts or mixture of nuts, and it is really good as well, the nuts keep for ages.  But I doubt if they will be around for long.”  Cut to the female reporter:  So while you go for the break.  I am going to have a nibble on the Chef’s nuts.

Stick a pin in the map, another perky little OU Journalism major has been found.  The winner of the week, the absolute best, has to be the commercial that states it can provide “Discount Bankruptcy.”  Now that is a concept.

Driving by this simple little elementary school out in the country I am amazed at how much things have changed in our lives.  When I was young and went to grammar school, we walked, we did not drive.  And we certainly did not show up plastered.

I-40 Eastbound El Reno Oklahoma

Here is another one that doesn’t make sense.  Where was Congress when we entered Viet Nam, Cambodia and Laos?  Where were all these Congressional observers when we went into Grenada, Nicaragua.  These elected misfits help us out with Kuwait, Iraq, and most recently Afghanistan?  Ask a six time deployed Marine what Congress has done for him lately … The answer is going to be not much.  As long as we keep electing Presidents who invoke the Emergency Powers of the President Act, we will be fighting in some war.  Congress doesn’t even enter into it any more.

Maybe I am just getting old and cranky and I just do not get it?  

But as an American I am tired of crap like this.  

What can I say … things happen.  It just isn’t any fun getting old in America.  I note that I forget things more quickly than before, a nice shapely thing in a short skirt isn’t all that likely to turn my head, but a Cheeseburger and order of fries surely will.  I have different parts of my body, waking up at different times every morning and I am not worth a flip until I get that second cup of coffee.

One thing is for sure, it is taking a long time for me to be the me that I want to be.  Retirement is not all that it is cut out to be, if you cannot afford a lawyer one will be appointed for you, if you cannot afford a doctor, go to any airport and you will get a free breast exam, free X-ray, and if you mention Al Qaeda you will get a free colonoscopy.

Here is an interesting read on aging and the life process.  Check it out.

Walking back to the car Thursday and a panhandler comes up to me and says, “Hey buddy, you got a couple of bucks for a sandwich?”  And I see the pack of Marlboro’s in his pocket, funny they never have anything for food, but they can always find the coin for a $5 pack of smokes.  I look at him and say, “Sure.  Let’s see the sandwich.”  Which of course, makes him a little bit indignant and he barks at me, “I aint selling them … I am trying to get one!”  I then said, “Well, if you are not selling them, then go away.”  He then implied that my parents were never married, which is of course silly, he doesn’t even know my parents.  

People seem to be wound a little tight these days, you notice that? 

When Michael Rorrer found a stash of comic book in his great-uncle’s home in Virginia after his death, he thought that they were cool.  But he soon discovered that some of them were among the rarest issues ever published.

The collection which fetched $3.6 million at auction included Action Comics #1 which introduced Superman to the world, Detective comics #27 the first appearance of Batman.  An incredible find.  From a historical perspective it is mind numbing.  My mother cleaned out my closet one fine spring day in 1965 and thus thwarted any chances of me ever being a millionaire.  I guess the only hope left for me is my metal detector, but unfortunately, I can no longer afford the batteries.

We always save the best for last around here, so here it is, straight out of our SPAM folder:  “I do not even know how I ended up here, but I thought this post was great. I do not know who you are but definitely you are going to a famous blogger if you are not already ;) Cheers!”

Now if that doesn’t give you a warm fuzzy … nothing will.

Life is a learning experience, we all take something away from it, I hope you share this belief and have benefited from all of this today.  I know I sure have, from now on, I am gonna hang onto every Snapple bottle cap I have.

You never know.


With Regret

Whitney Houston dead and flags are flown at half staff for her .. she killed herself with drugs and booze.

Charlie Sheen is 45 and his story is all over the news because he is a substance abuser, an adulterer, sexually promiscuous and obnoxious.

Lindsay Lohan is 24 and her story is all over the news because she is a celebrity drug addict and thief.  Now she is sober and making a comeback as if anyone really cares?

Something as frivolous as Kim Kardashian’s stupid wedding [and short-lived marriage] was shoved down our throats. Meanwhile, while all of this was going on, these people listed below died for the cause.

Justin Allen 23  Brett Linley 29
Matthew Weikert 29  Justus Bartett 27
Dave Santos 21  Jesse Reed 26

Matthew Johnson 21  Zachary Fisher 24 

Brandon King 23  Christopher Goeke 23  and Sheldon Tate 27…

Are all Marines that gave their lives last month for you.

There is no nationwide coverage; not even a mention of their names.

Rest In Peace.



Related:  Get It Right America


At What Cost

Seldom do I hold a President accountable for a campaign promise, simply because, “they promise you what it is that you want to hear, and they never fulfill the promise or provide the answer or the solution in the end.”  In other words, “a politician will say anything” in order to get elected.

Our President promised for example “to bring the troops home.”

And he now considers that policy in place and happening.  At first glance it would appear he is doing just that, but it is smoke and mirrors.  Mr. Obama is reducing the size of the army in Afghanistan down from 100,000 to 30,000.  That is not bringing them home, that is still leaving a sizable portion of them there to bolster the Afghan Army which is a joke, a rag-tag assemble of soldiers, who had some 24,000 deserters just last year.

Recently I talked to a vet who had been there, he said the country was a rat hole, a sewer, a festering pockmark on the face of humanity.  It all started under Bush as a narrow, modest war of necessity.  Most of the goals of that administration were accomplished quickly.  Then as it is with all American Wars, it was expanded.

We set out with determined measure to transform this tribal nation into a stable democracy.  Ten years later, the goal remains out of our grasp, despite the loss of 1,800 American lives and a cost of over $400 billion dollars.  Now ask yourself this question, “What would $400 billion dollars buy in the way of computers for kids, how far would it go towards a poverty program for those who are hungry?  In what way could this money have been spent better for a cause that was worthy?”  We spend all of our money building roads and bridges in countries that most people ride a donkey to town.

The democracy aspect of all this is just about as ludicrous.

Afghanistan is arguably the most primitive nation on earth with rampant malnutrition, widespread illiteracy, and a 15th century standard of living.  The government of President Hamid Karzai is totally corrupt, and is despised by the ordinary Afghans.  Their army is a shamble and certainly no match for the Taliban just next door in Pakistan.

Everything that has been accomplished in this country in the past ten years, is certainly very fragile and reversible.  If our President pushes ahead with his plan to withdraw U.S. troops by 2014, the Taliban will pour back into Afghanistan from their sanctuaries in Pakistan.  The country will once again become a terrorist haven, with disastrous consequences for the United States and for world security.

The Russians found this to be true in their brief history with the country and we are soon to find out the same end result.  After ten years of being mired in this cesspool we face the very same depressing out look.

We will in the end, give it all back.  Only one question remains.

At what cost?



Between A Rock And A Hard Place

As a small lad I found that Gun Boat Diplomacy, American Doctrine, the Foreign Policy, as it was explained to me just did not make sense.  I remember one day talking to my father about it and his only explanation was this.  “Listen son, as long as there is a rock here, and a rock there, we will have idiots that will fight over them.”

Now I must admit, that at the time, that just did not make a whole lot of sense to me.  Just like, “Eat all your vegetables, there are kids in China that are starving too death.” And I knew damn well, that my father had never in his life, been to China.

Maybe Watonga Oklahoma or Amarillo, Texas, but surely not Beijing.

Yesterday I read where Kentucky and Ohio are conducting a legal battle over a rock.  Yes I said a rock.  “Indian Head Rock” had jutted out of the Kentucky side of the Ohio River until some Ohioans uprooted the iconic 8-ton boulder and moved it to Ohio.  Kentucky sued, and has regained possession until the legal wrangling is resolved.  “We’ll keep it in a safe and secure place,” promised Kentucky officials.

See?  If you wait long enough, your chickens will come home to roost.

Took awhile, but I now understand the rock part of all this, unfortunately Gun Boat Diplomacy and all this Middle East garbage, still doesn’t make sense to me here.  Locked down in the Heartland … Middle America … But the rock, well, it finally happened.  Perhaps I will someday understand the part my Uncle Sam plays in all this, the diplomacy thing and all that, but the jury is still out on that one.


Now that I am older, I more or less feel different
About what my Uncle Sam said, through the use of me
And my brief tenure in the U.S.Government.

Uncle Sam said, “Watch them.” Don’t you bend one inch
They are out to bury you with subtle subversion
and politics.

Uncle Sam said, “I want you to serve” My every wish, shall be your command
So I carried a gun in my early youth working for my Uncle Sam.

I have a duty to my scarred and weary brothers
Who were raped in a land … far, far away
I have a duty and I have something to say.

My voice will ring out loud upon the land … I will stand up, I will be counted
Truly, I will be heard because, in a place called Viet Nam my brothers and I served working for my Uncle Sam

When I was young I carried a gun my Uncle Sam patted my strong back
He told me of the fine job my brothers and I had done, in a strange and foreign land

I know now that I have a duty to teach others of our mistakes
Regardless of what the politicians say
No matter how long it takes to effect a change.

Have a great weekend …


Another Crap Sandwich


A lot of talk here lately about newspapers folding or shutting down and stopping.  It might be because of the popularity of the Internet or the plain simple fact, that a lot of what they print is not news, it doesn’t even come close to being described as news.

A lot of it is just garbage.  People want more news, not garbage.

From time to time, I will write an article on the media in this country and I usually frame them with titles that say “Media Fatigue” or “Crap Sandwich.”  Last week USA Today, The Nation’s Newspaper, fed us some more perhaps you caught it. 

If you didn’t here is the link.

In this article written by Thurston Clarke in the opinion or forum page, we were fed another media crap sandwich.  In this article “Can We Handle The Truth?” that used a tired line out of an old movie, “A few Good Men.” (You want the truth Danny?  You cannot stand the truth! Jack Nicholson)  Mr. Clarke implies that most of the problems in this country, or at least, some of the problems we are currently facing are “OUR” responsibility and we need to as citizens, assume some of the burden.

Well we all know what that is ….. You spread it on your rose’s in the spring, water it, and it makes them grow better, it is a bovine by-product you can buy at the home garden center.  And I assume, that his book that is now on sale, is just some more of the same.

There seems to be this under-current running thru our country that we all need to acknowledge our collective culpability for the major issues here at home and for some of the damage that is being done in the Middle East under the guise of “Democracy.”

That our environmental degrading is somehow a product of our making, and that we are in fact willing participants in an unnecessary and illegal war, that we as citizens of this country condone torture of other human beings.

Again … We all know what that type of thinking or free speech idiom this seems to be.

Mr. Clarke states in part that “we all bear some responsibility for what has happened on Wall Street and Main Street.”  Which is a crap sandwich for sure.  How is it that I as a citizen of this country, who bought a house that I could afford, pay my bills and obligations on time, month after month, can be responsible for any of this garbage?  That is simply ludicrous.

Why is it as a taxpayer and good citizen I am to assume a measure of responsibility for what are clearly in my book, morally reprehensible and border line criminal acts by dishonest, lying politicians and those bonus motivated bottom feeders in the business sector.

It is far too easy to sit back and write, that American’s who bought houses they could not afford are clearly the problem.  We didn’t coin the phrase “Ninja” loan, the bankers did (No Income – No Job – No Assets) they were the people who APPROVED THESE BAD LOANS how it the average American is supposed to assume ownership of that?

Get real.

When the war started I called my representatives in Congress and strongly urged them to NOT support it, and called to their attention that it was all based on a lie, from the data available to me at that time.  We know who the “guilty” are in this, and we sat back and we did nothing about it.  The media it seems to me should be sharing the lion’s share of the blame on the majority of this.

They are the folks who conveniently looked the other way when Bush flat out said, “He was sick of questions on the subject, and was not going to answer any more.  The world is a safer place without Saddam and that was the end of the story.” Instead of pressing the issues, the press folded up their tents, and moved on.

So life as we know it moved to the back of the stove, and our media reported that Donald Rummsfield was “the sexiest man in America” and that “Britney wasn’t wearing her underwear” and the dirt was swept under the rug and we moved on to the next big non-story in America.

I got news for you.

Most of the people in this country, a large percentage of them are paying their mortgages on time.  Most of us did not vote to prolong this war or ask for or order the incarceration of people in Gitmo or secret prisons in Europe, and find that just as equally insulting as the rest of this tripe.

I buy a cop of USA Today almost every day, and frankly folks, this is just more “kicking the wrong dog.”  You want to write about responsibilities lacking and falling short of the mark, just take a look around the room, plenty of candidates there.

I am not buying your book Mr. Clarke and I don’t buy any of this … “Can We Handle The Truth” garbage either.  If you feel the need to walk around carrying a #3 washtub of guilt about any of this or all of it … fine.  Don’t try and lay it off on me.  I personally find it just as disgusting as your so-called article.

We need and desire news, not this watered down McLean Virginia cup full of horse crap, with the foam farted off of it.  Irrationally held truths may be more harmful than reasoned errors.  Aren’t we just as responsible not only for the lies we speak but for the truth we fail to speak.

The average American on whatever street, is NOT responsible for any of this, this idea that we are all in this collective boat of despair because we wanted it is rubbish if not an outright lie.

In my neck of the woods (Oklahoma) they have an expression.  “You can buy oats two ways.  Before they have been thru the horse or after.”

And this article is definitely … After.