July



Our Lady of Fatima... Pray for us.
Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament... Hear us.
Our Lady of the Rosary... Strengthen us.


Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Switching gears...

     When I started you are mine, my goal was to provide information and reflection about American history, current events, faith and simple living. It was going to be a helpful, hopeful one-stop-shop for people who see the need for God in their lives... and who fear for our republic.
     In that time, I have tried to ring the bell about the trouble America is in. And perhaps you have shared the information with your friends. But I am about to switch gears a little bit for the remainder of the year. I urge you to go to The Blaze and Romantic Poet, as well as other sites in my sidebar for the latest news and information.
     And when you read the news, please remember to watch for what the other hand is up to. And always follow the money. Look for the connections, because they are there.
     Consider some recent stories...
     The Wikileaks story? George Soros's Open Society, Code Pink, Bill Ayers, and Movement for a Democratic Society are all involved. See the motives and connections, here.
     The TSA story? It has been the goal of this administration since the beginning to unionize the TSA. All the trouble started right on the heels of the president giving them the nod to unionize. The 24/7 media attention. The not-so-suitable-for-humans scanners. The naked images. The invasive pat downs for those passengers opting out. More media hype about TSA bad behavior. The public outrage. No wonder morale is sketchy.
     The unions to the rescue. Why does the TSA need the unions? Why do any federal bureaucrats, for that matter? Why can't the TSA just improve the working conditions themselves? Because this administration wants them unionized. Remember top down, bottom up, inside out. Anarchy. Chaos. Then government control.
     How about the Food Safety Bill that was pushed through the Senate in a hurried lame duck vote. Control of the food supply. Monsanto stands to profit, and who do you suppose is a huge Monsanto investor... George Soros.
     And despite their Obamacare waiver, SEIU has dropped children from their insurance plans, and put them on the path to a single payer healthcare system. They say the system is overloaded. Remember Cloward & Piven?
     And what a coincidence that UAW is the biggest winner in the GM stock sales. Union payoff. Workers of the world unite. These things are all connected. And once you know what to look for, you can see it all, plain as day.
     Stay awake, and do what you can to protect your remaining freedoms.
     As for me, I will be posting more faith meditations throughout Advent. For where my treasure is, there my heart also will be. More simple living too. It is time to look ahead toward self sufficiency, with an ever-deeper reliance on God's providence. So look for more posts about preparing my heart for Christmas. And preparing my home for the year ahead.
     May God bless you abundantly. And may the peace of Christ be always in your heart and in your home.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Indecency at the Smithsonian...

     I hardly know what to say.
     If you are planning a field trip to the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery this Christmas season, you might want to reconsider.
     Read about their latest exhibit here, from CNS News, if you can stomach it. Along with the shocking images, pay specific attention to what the Smithsonian printed in their catalog, promoting this so-called art. Warning: graphic, lewd content.
     I recently was at the National Portrait Gallery. I was there for a lunch stop at a nearby cafe, and I remember wishing I had the time to go through it to look at the beautiful portraits. I thought to myself at the time, I can't believe I've never been here before.
     Now, I can't believe I can never go back.
     Do you ever feel like you keep waking up in a nightmare? Children go into that gallery. Was it really all that long ago when decency and purity meant something in America?
     Apparently, the Smithsonian would rather promote this circus sideshow.
     And just in time for Christmas.
     God forgive us.

Update, 11/30: Under fire, the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery has removed a video depicting ants swarming all over the crucified Jesus, saying the video "may be" offensive to some.

Advent... a time of preparation...

     Yesterday was the first Sunday of Advent, marking the first day of the new liturgical year. Our pastor spoke about the messages of the end of one Church year and the beginning of another. He said that during the previous day's Mass... the very last words of the year... the closing message in the Gospel reading was... "Be vigilant at all times."
     He went on to say that the message for the first day of the new Church year, this Sunday, was the same, "Stay awake. Be prepared."
     We may get swept along in the anxieties and trials of our days. But we must never become so preoccupied as to forget about the Lord.
     Jesus is very clear. We are to stay alert. Be vigilant. Be ready. And stay close to the Lord.
     I leaned over and whispered to my son, Matthew, and reminded him of what we had talked about in the car on the way to church. The Gospel mentioned that in the days before Noah and the flood, the people went about their business, eating and drinking, unaware of what was about to hit them.
     I had reminded the kids that in the storms of our lives, we should already be on God's ark. We should live close to God, always under his protection. And we will be safe from any storm. And we will be prepared for whatever comes.
     How appropriate that we begin Advent with a message of preparedness and readiness.
     Stay awake. Be vigilant at all times. And prepare our hearts for the coming of the Lord.

Food storage made easy...

     Here is a great website I found today, called Food Storage Made Easy... with so many tools to put you on the road to self-sufficiency, if you are not yet there.
     I am starting with the Baby Steps.
     Plan ahead. Stock up. Be ready.

My Soul in Stillness Waits

This is one of my favorite Advent meditations...
My Soul in Stillness Waits
Refrain: For you, O lord, my soul in stillness waits. Truly my hope is in you.
1. O Lord of Light, our only hope of glory, your radiance shines in all who look to you. Come light the hearts of all in dark and shadow.
2. O Spring of Joy, rain down upon our spirits. Our thirsty hearts are yearning for your Word. Come, make us whole; be comfort to our hearts.
3. O Root of Life, implant your seed within us, and in your advent draw us all to you, our hope reborn in dying and in rising.
4. O Key of Knowledge, guide us in our pilgrimage, We ever seek, yet unfulfilled remain. Open to us the pathway of your peace.
5. Come, let us bow before the God who made us. Let every heart be opened to the Lord, for we are all the people of his hand.
6. Here we shall meet the makers of the heavens, creator of the mountains and the seas, Lord of the stars and present to us now.
Marty Haugen © GIA Music

Friday, November 26, 2010

Funny Guy Friday... Unexpected Thanksgiving blessings

     About a week ago, Cheryl reminded me that her mother was having Thanksgiving dinner this year for her family. Her sister Sue was coming in from Washington state and was going to stay the week at her mom and dad's house.
     Cheryl then asked if we could have her sister Ann and her four kids stay at our home for a few days over the Thanksgiving holiday. Typically, she does not need to ask... I love her sister... but we were scheduled to host my family for dinner this year, and that means that forty people would be at our house on Thanksgiving day. My concern was that it might be a bit chaotic having twice as many people in our house as we prepare for Thanksgiving dinner. This situation was not making me thankful.
     Cheryl acknowledged my concern and nothing else was said...........until Tuesday when she deftly brushed my concerns aside and called me at work to advise that her sister and the four kids were coming and would be at our house that night.
     Whoa... Wait a minute... We never finished the conversation when you asked if they could stay. I am King of this castle and the King was thinking this was not a good idea. 
     Apparently, the Queen had other thoughts. Not only were they coming, but when they got here, Cheryl was set to go out to meet her mom and sisters for dinner... Girls' night out.
     When I asked what she planned to do with the seven kids at our house, she chuckled and asked what time I would be home. It seems that the Queen needed me to leave work early, do the shopping for the Thanksgiving feast, and be home in time to feed the seven kids that were going to be at our house, and stay with them for the night.
     Absolutely not, the stores would be too crowded, and I reminded her about the forty people coming on Thursday. No, I would not go. That was that!
     Surprisingly, the stores were not that crowded as I shopped for the Thanksgiving Day feast. Again, I was not feeling all that thankful when I had to wrestle a seventy-five year-old woman for the biggest bird still available. Unfortunately, I lost and had to buy two turkeys for the, you remember, forty people coming to my house.
     When Cheryl and Annie got home, I reminded Cheryl of all the things that still need to be done. She assured me that the next day, her sister would help her out and and it would all get done.
     I was skeptical. I am not an authority on kids, but one thing that I do know is that kids are not conducive to cleaning, They are the anti-clean. If kids are around, nothing is getting cleaned. If you do get it put away, they are pulling it back out. If you vacuum a rug, they will trample over it with leaves all over their shoes. This is who there are. It's an innate ability.
     I arrived home early on Wednesday and, surprise, there was little progress. In fact, some of my family were starting to roll into town and they were also at our house for part of the day.
     We were never going to be ready. 
     After my family left, Annie left to spend some time with Cheryl's mom. Cheryl and I decided that I would take the kids to my parents' house and she would stay to finish the cleaning and start preparing the stuffing for the turkey. Great plan, but Noah decided that he wanted to stay with Cheryl. This, I knew, would result in either Cheryl playing with Noah instead of preparing, or Cheryl falling asleep with Noah instead of preparing. When I arrived home, I found out that it was a combination of both. Not much was done and I was still not feeling real thankful.
     Cheryl and I did rally to get some things ready, but still no stuffing was prepared. Annie arrived home from her mother's, and it was at this point that I gave up and went to bed. There was some discussion about the timing of the cooking of the birds and other food preparations, but I went to bed with a plan that we would get up early and put one bird in at 6 a.m. and then prepare the stuffing and stuff the second bird. We would then bake the stuffed turkey shortly after the first bird came out of the oven. Great plan... I set my alarm for six o'clock.
     At 7:15, I woke up in a panic. I was late and there was still a lot to do. As I gathered myself, I smelled the unmistakable smell of turkey baking in the oven. I could hear her working away. Cheryl was on the job, and there was nothing to worry about. I rolled back over and put my arm around my lovely wife, finally feeling thankful.
     Wait a second... I was hugging someone... and that someone was supposed to be downstairs. My first thought was that Annie had crawled into bed with me... I was starting to feel even more thankful... but I quickly realized that this can't be right. My second thought was that Annie was cooking dinner for the forty people coming over to our house while Cheryl was still asleep.
     I pulled myself together and went down to the kitchen to find that Annie was, in fact, hard at work. She had prepared the stuffing, prepped the birds for baking, stuffing one of them, and had peeled the potatoes that I would later mash. To top it all off, she was doing the dishes. She did apologize for waking up late and not getting the first bird in the oven until 6:05. I assured her that this was okay----I would not tell Cheryl... WHEN SHE FINALLY WAKES UP!
     As I sit here writing this post, Thanksgiving day is drawing to a close, and forty people just left my house. We had a great Thanksgiving dinner.
     What am I thankful for? I am thankful that I married the nicest person that God has ever put on this earth. I am thankful that we have three great kids that have three completely different personalities. Each presents different blessings and different challenges, and I love accepting the blessings and meeting the challenges.
     I am thankful to be able to host forty of my family members for Thanksgiving dinner and wish that many more could have been there. Each of them is a great blessing in my life.
     I am thankful that I live in the greatest country in the world. And I am thankful for all the obvious gifts that God provides me on a daily basis.
     But on this day, at this time, after cleaning up after those forty people, and thinking about the day, I am most thankful for the unexpected blessings He provides-----like my sister-in-law Annie! I hope to have her back again next year, no matter what Cheryl says!

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you... Stay tuned for next week's Funny Guy Friday... When Funny Guy posts about the annual Thanksgiving Turkey Bowl football game.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Alleluia Chorus at Macy's...

     A flash mob hit Macy's in downtown Philadelphia...
650 vocalists who, unknown to shoppers, had arranged to burst into song at noon. A must-see from the City of Brotherly Love.
     Alleluia. Praise God.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Funny Guy Friday... I smell bacon...

     Cheryl and I got all dressed up and attended a 50th wedding anniversary party for some friends last Sunday evening. These folks are very nice people, and it was a joy to share in their celebration. We had a great time.
     Afterward, we decided to go shopping at Sears, which was having a "Friends and Family" night. They were staying open later than usual so only special people (i.e. anyone who showed up) could shop late and get a discount on their purchases.
     We arrived at Sears at about 8:15 and discoverd that it was to close at nine o'clock, so we hustled to purchase a few things, and we checked out a little bit after nine. The very nice folks at Sears had to unlock the doors for us to leave, and we proceeded to our car which was the only car left in that section of the parking lot.
     As we approached our car with our purchases in hand, I saw a police car in another section of the lot, and as I always do when I see a police car, I said, "I smell bacon... Act like we ain't doing anything illegal."
     Cheryl did what she always does and ignored me.
     As I pulled off, I noticed that the officer had turned around and followed us out. Of course, because a police officer was behind me, I did everything that I don't normally do... I buckled up, I used my turn signals, I went the speed limit, and I didn't smoke the joint that I had hidden in my console.
     As I turned left, the officer turned left. As I turned right, the officer turned right. When I came to a red light, he was directly behind me, and I just knew he was running my tags. This is when the fun started.
     I asked Cheryl, "Did I speed?" No. "Did I not use my signal?" No. "Did I light up a joint?" No. "Did you light up a joint?" No.
     My always-positive wife assured me that nothing was wrong and he was not going to pull us over. I, being a clever innocent person, decided to check out her theory.
     There was a two or three car-length space between our car and the car in front of me. Why was there a two or three car length space between our car and the car in front of us, you ask? There was a cop behind me, remember, so I wasn't going to pull right up on some stranger's bumper like I normally do. Anyway, I decided to pull the car up a bit to see if the officer also pulled up. He did. I pulled up some more. So did he. Then my fears were confirmed, but Cheryl assured me once again, it was nothing.
     As I pulled out onto the highway, the officer's lights and sirens went off, and he did pull me over. Clearly, I was irritated. Cheryl, of course, was wrong... but as always, she was calm. She assured me that it was still nothing.
     You know... in Cheryl world, the police pull you over to make friendly inquiries about your health and welfare.
     He took about ten minutes before he got out of his car. During those ten minutes, Cheryl reminded me that I did say, I smell bacon, which really was not a nice thing to do. Great... We got pulled over by Robocop with superhero hearing. She also reminded me that police officers lay there lives on the line for us every day, so I should stop with my attitude.
     Let me be clear, I understand and I apppreciate what police officers do. But no officer is laying his life on the line by pulling over the middle-aged couple wearing a party dress and a suit & tie, driving the family Pilot as the getaway car. This officer's biggest hazard would probably be getting a paper cut as he handed me whatever ticket he was about to give me.
     When he did get out of the car, he took another thirty seconds or so, flashing his light throughout the back of our car. I have a pretty good grasp of how these traffic stops work, so I was careful to place my hands on the steering wheel so the officer could see them as he approached, and to either have my license and registration ready or to ask if I can move my hands to get my license and registration.
     Again, I get what they go through. I also know that they don't normally shine a light throughout your vehicle for as long as he did unless they have something else on their mind. At that point, I was more irritated.
     Suddenly, he popped up over on Cheryl's side of the car. I have to say I was a bit relieved because it looked like she was the one that broke the law, not me. I thought to myself, She must have flipped him off when I wasn't looking.
     The officer, who looked about eighteen years old, asked why we had pulled out of the Sears parking lot after we saw his vehicle. My response was a short and curt, "We have to go home."
     "Well, you saw my car and then you immediately turned quickly in the opposite direction and took off." Maybe he did hear my little bacon joke. 
     "We live in the opposite direction and we were shopping at Sears," I assured him. He informed us that Sears closes at six o'clock and we were there after nine. Uh oh, he had us now. We always get all dressed up before we knock off a Sears. You should see what we wear when we rob Nordstroms.
     By this point, I was even more irritated because the kids were home by themselves on a school night and should have been in bed by now... and I was sure that they weren't... so I knew I would have to beat them... and this guy was delaying all of that.
     At that point my lovely, calm wife explained the whole Friends and Family deal with the extended store hours, and even relayed the fact that we had three kids that we were desperately trying to get home to see so we could "tuck them into bed." I think she even told him that if we could get them to bed early enough, we would sit and read some scripture together. She was smooooth.
     I was able to squeeze in the fact that I am a lawyer and I understand why he did what he did and why he stopped us. I think he was a bit embarrased because he told me my brake light was out, quickly returned my license and registration, and told us to have a nice evening.
     That was it. No ticket. No warning. No nothing. We beat the rap. However, I was still a bit irritated.
     After the officer left, Cheryl said she was dissapointed in herself for not thanking the officer for all that he does. What? He had just delayed the beat down at the house and you want to thank him? We are hardly Bonnie and Clyde! 
    Then it occurred to me... If I had received a ticket, she would probably testify against me and in favor of this officer at the trial. I could see her going on and on and on, after taking the stand:
     State's Attorney: Could you please state your name and address for the record...
     Cheryl: My name is Cheryl and let me get right to it, your Honor. My husband... the Defendant sitting over there in the nice suit... Isn't he cute?... did make a deragatory comment about law enforcement, and almost as soon as he saw the officer's patrol vehicle, told me to act like I did not do anything illegal. 
     I knew that I had not done anything illegal, so I recall thinking at the time that if I hadn't done anything illegal, my husband must have. 
     In addition... I can't say for certain whether or not he was speeding because my head whipped back as he skidded away from the police officer, so I could not see the speedometer jump. 
     He never wears his seat belt, and he usually speeds, but I think he was on his best behavior that night... because that nice young officer was watching him the whole time. 
     Once we were stopped, he continued to act suspicious, again going on and on about, and I quote, "What is this knucklehead doing? I just hope I get one of the judges that knows what he is doing when I go to trial." I am sad to say, he did not mention your name, your Honor. 
     One final thing... I know this has nothing to do with this case, but he never hangs up his suits. Thank you, your Honor, for this opportunity to testify on behalf of the State, and please thank that fine young officer for keeping our streets safe and our stores secure. God bless us all.
     Then a final thought occurred to me. I bet the guy whose party we just attended, who stayed married for fifty years, was never pulled over by a police officer leaving Sears late on a Sunday evening.

A closer look at the Food Safety Bill...

     A bill currently before this lame duck session of Congress is called the Food Safety Modernization Act. It seems there is another crisis that absolutely must be addressed immediately. The Senate has closed debate, and the bill is awaiting a vote in that chamber.
     Once again we are looking at a one-size-fits-all, top down effort to centrally manage our lives... this time it involves expanded FDA regulations to control the food supply and what we should be feeding our kids. Small farmers and proponents for local food growers are worried. Read here.
     The price of food is already predicted to rise due to inflation. Locally grown food could help to keep costs down. However, the extra layer of regulation will necessarily drive up costs for local growers, too.
     As with any new piece of legislation that I think could be counterproductive to liberty and our economy, I have begun to research who supports the legislation. This food bill is being pushed by the Pew Charitable Trusts and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. See who they fund. It tells me all I need to know. Remember the fruit of the poisonous tree?
     We already know that the so-called Stimulus was written by the Tides Foundation's Apollo Alliance, and the so-called Healthcare Reform Law took its lead from the book, The Progressive Agenda for Structural Change, and is admitted to be redistribution of the wealth.
     Once you start looking into where these sweeping policies come from, you soon realize where they are taking us.

Go green and redistribute the wealth...

     For anyone who still thinks the whole global warming thing is about environmental policy, think again. Read it in their own words here, from The Blaze, and here, from Romantic Poet.
     There's that whole redistribution of the wealth thing again. Hmmm.
     It appears the global green movement is more about greenbacks than anything else.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

No money from me for the CCHD...

     This Sunday, the second collection at Mass in many parishes across America will again be used for the USCCB's Catholic Campaign for Human Development, "the domestic anti-poverty, social justice program of the US Catholic bishops."
     For 40 years, the CCHD has collected more than $280 million from Catholic collections. But the donations do not go directly to those in material need for things like food, clothing or shelter.
     No. The money goes to fund a vast network of community organizers, working for societal, political and economic transformation, in the name of "social justice."
     Community organizing is a method of social agitation, confrontation and infiltration. Taking its lead from the teachings of communist Saul Alinsky, it is intended to fan the flames of discontent in communities, for the purpose of seizing public power.
     "Saul Alinsky explained his community organizing tactics in his book Rules for Radicals. His game plan was to divide the community into the Haves and the Have Nots, make the Have Nots believe they are unjustly treated by the Haves, build resentment against the American social and economic system, use church congregations to mobilize street agitators, and lobby government for higher taxes and big-spending welfare programs in order to confiscate the wealth and power of the Haves and turn it over to the Have Nots. Alinsky dedicated his book to Lucifer, "the first radical known to man who rebelled against the establishment and did it so effectively that he at least won his own kingdom." Discover the Networks 
     Over the years, the CCHD collection has funded some organizations that conduct or support activities that directly oppose the teaching of the Catholic faith. Their connection to Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good, Call to Action, and ultimately, George Soros, are troubling.
     Under fire from faithful Catholic groups, the CCHD has made some reforms. But the USCCB's reform document highlights groups that still hold dubious alliances. The Coalition of Imolokee Workers is a member of the US Human Rights Network; FOCUS is part of the PICO network; and COPS is one of Saul Alinsky's Industrial Areas Foundation projects. Those are just the first three grantees promoted in the CCHD reform document.
     There may be some CCHD grantees this year that will do some good work, especially if the list includes (for the first time ever) crisis pregnancy centers. But the CCHD has not yet made available the list of recipients for this year's grants.
     Let me be clear... Many people involved in the CCHD may have good intentions; but, it is my belief that no bad tree can yield good fruit (Matthew 7). For me, the Saul Alinsky genesis has tainted the whole project.
     That said, in and around every archdiocese, there are some very worthy local charities whose good works support the true teaching of the church. This year, once again, I will choose one of those, and give to it directly.
     To learn about the roots of the CCHD, its ties to Saul Alinsky, and the evil it has abided for 40 years, click here, to watch Real Catholic TV's March broadcast of Catholic Investigative Agency.
     For more recent information, see the report from the group Reform CCHD Now, here, and see a list of links to CCHD-related articles from LifeSite News here, especially this one about the apparent backpedaling on the CCHD reforms in Chicago, and this one, regarding the CCHD praise for the Coalition of Imolokee Workers.
     They said to one another, "Come, let us mold bricks and harden them with fire." They used bricks for stone, and bitumen for mortar. Then they said, "Come, let us build ourselves a city and a tower with its top in the sky, and so make a name for ourselves; otherwise we shall be scattered all over the earth." LORD came down to see the city and the tower that the men had built. Then the LORD said: "If now, while they are one people, all speaking the same language, they have started to do this, nothing will later stop them from doing whatever they presume to do. Let us then go down and there confuse their language, so that one will not understand what another says." Thus the LORD scattered them from there all over the earth, and they stopped building the city. Genesis 11
     I pray that this network be defunded by Catholics, and scattered by God.
     Please pray for the CCHD program, that true reform will happen, and that any money received will be faithfully used for the glory of God.

Top down, bottom up and inside out...

     The fundamental transformers of America are playing a serious game. The radicals are in place at the top of what is left of our Republic. And they are encouraging chaos from the bottom up. Then they will turn our Republic inside out.
     When you see insurrection and chaos from the bottom, please be aware that it is being orchestrated from the top.
     And it could be frightening to some who are caught by surprise.
     And the unsuspecting middle will beg the top to make it stop. And they will be happy to oblige.
"See that you not be deceived, for many will come in my name, saying, 'I am he,’ and 'The time has come.’ Do not follow them! When you hear of wars and insurrections, do not be terrified; for such things must happen first, but it will not immediately be the end." Then he said to them, "Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be powerful earthquakes, famines, and plagues from place to place; and awesome sights and mighty signs will come from the sky." Luke 21
     Stock your food pantry. Cotton is at an all time high, so clothing will become much more expensive. Think of what you may need and stock up.
     Prepare now. And be a shelter for others.
     For more on this, click here.

Monday, November 15, 2010

End the Fed...

     Click here for another great article from American Thinker, entitled, "Fed up with the Fed." Here is an excerpt...
      "Not only is the Fed insulated from accountability to the voters, that very unaccountability may be unconstitutional.  The Constitution designates the people's elected representatives as the guardians of their money ("Congress shall have Power...To coin Money, [and] regulate the value thereof..."-Article I, Section 8.)  Indeed, Thomas Jefferson noted in 1791 that Congress has no authority to create a bank and give it a monopoly over our money, because such actions "are not among the powers specially enumerated" in the Constitution.
     "Almost 30 years ago, I spoke with a young congressman (later the governor of his state) after he had given a talk in which he asserted that Congress' hands were tied, in terms of economic policy, by the Fed.  I responded that, at least in my universe, the creator controls the creation, and that since the Fed was created by an act of Congress, it could be reformed or abolished by an act of Congress.  This made the congressman visibly uncomfortable and he fell silent.  Clearly, he had no stomach for challenging the Fed.
     I recommend you read the whole article.
     Inflation is coming because of the Fed. It is time to put a stop to the destructive manipulation of our currency.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Funny Guy Friday... Free Ice Cream...

     The other night, I was home with the kids, while Cheryl went to a dinner with a church group. As she drove off, I went to retrieve the mail.
     As a kid, I used to love to get mail, but now it is just bills and advertisements. Nobody uses the US Postal Service anymore, so there is nothing that really gets me excited. I did not anticipate anything different on this day.
     As I flipped through the day's junk, I found a postcard addressed to our six-year-old son. I assumed it was an invitation to a birthday party, or a thank you for some gift that he had taken  to last week's birthday party. This was a good assumption because once you hit first grade, everybody is your best friend, and the whole class gets invited to everything.
     This postcard was from Friendly's restaurant. Cool... a Friendly's party... I will volunteer to take him to this party... I love ice cream.   
     As I read it a bit closer, I could see that it was a congratulatory card advising my son that he had won an art contest. My little man is an artist... always has been. He will tell you, "I am an artist, I am not a cleaner upper." This we have heard on more than one occasion.
     He is not great in baseball, but he will draw the heck out of a baseball player. Anyway, the last time we were at Friendly's, about four months ago, he colored a picture, and it was hung on the wall with a bunch of other clearly inferior pictures. His was chosen as the winner, so he will receive a free meal.
     Not that there are "winners" and "losers" in art, but I think you know what I am saying. My son blended colors perfectly, in such a way that the picture came to life, and he is what I have loosely referred to as a "winner." The other little pretenders were lucky to keep their colors inside the lines, and would be what I have loosely referred to as the "losers." It turns out that in the jungle-like art world, the winners eat, and the losers keep trying.
     As I think about this in the context of sports, I am a little concerned. If he eats the meal, will he lose his NCAA art eligibility. This could result in an awful scandal if he wins the NCAA National Art Championship and they find out he was once compensated for his work. I will have to check on this before we partake in the feast. Even if we don't partake, we all know my boy WON!
     Both Cheryl and I really do believe that he has a special talent. In fact, when his ten-year-old brother did a nice little art project of his own, I told him it was "really good, I mean it looks like something Noah would do." He did not understand... I was paying him a compliment by comparing him to his little brother.
     Now, I think we may have to consider sending Noah off to a special school like the one in Fame. We will miss him, but we feel we must share his talents with the world. This Friendly's "award" confirms what we have known all along, and we didn't even have to send in a drawing of a donkey on the back of a napkin to some matchbook company to prove his skills.
     The following day, I told my secretary about my boy's award-winning masterpiece, and told her of his special gifts. She advised me that her son had attended the Art Institute of Philadelphia and was also quite an artist. I am sure that he is okay... but nothing like my boy.
     The next day, she brought in a large professional-quality case with paper and art supplies that had been sitting in her closet since her son had bought it years ago. Isn't it always the case, the great ones get all the goodies, and the losers get squat. Poor losers. If they are lucky, they may get a chance to slobber at the window of my son's studio, and watch as he creates. 
     Well, today I came home and as I typically do, I again grabbed the mail and began to sort it into the "throw away now" and the "throw away later after it sits around for five days" piles. In the middle of this process, I came across another postcard from Friendly's. Another masterpiece, another winner. Noah is incredible.
     As I flipped it over, I was shocked to find it was addressed to my daughter. Wait a minute, her drawing stunk. What is going on here? Does every kid win? This can't be right. Don't tell me that this is just some advertising ploy to get me to come back to their restaurant!
     Well, this changes everything. I guess we don't have the next Picasso. He is just like every other kid. Ouch!
     Well it is not all bad news, we have one more kid left who also did a drawing, so it looks like one more free meal... and as you may know... I love ice cream.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Monetizing the debt...

     Our government is monetizing our debt. They call it quantitative easing.
“'Monetizing' debt, by the way, is larceny on the grandest scale. Rather than honestly repaying what it has borrowed, a government merely prints up extra currency and uses it to pay its loans. The debt is “monetized”…transformed into an increase in the money supply, thereby lowering the purchasing power of everybody’s savings." The Daily Reckoning
     The Fed is devaluing the dollar by printing hundreds of billions of dollars to buy our own debt, and the government is a willing accomplice. I believe it is completely intentional. See my post about George Soros. He has called for a "managed decline of the dollar."
     The amount the government has printed in the past two years is about two trillion dollars...  with 600 billion more pledged over the next eight months... and another probable 250-300 billion after that... that we know of. We don't know for sure because the Fed won't open its books. Some Fed officials are voicing concernsChina is worried, and has downgraded our credit rating. Other countries are angry.
     What the government is doing is theft. It is the same thing as saying, We need the money, and so we will reach into your bank accounts and take it... Because monetizing our debt will lead to hyperinflation, and the price of everything will go up. It is only a matter of time before we have food inflation. For a summary of all of this, please read this, from the American Thinker.
     Did you know that under a command economy, the ever-growing needs and objectives of the state are met... at the expense of lower living standards for We the People.
     Buy food. Stock up. Be prepared.

More about George Soros...

     Go to The Blaze, for more information about George Soros... his destructive financial agenda... his political control... his misdeeds... his plans to destroy America as he has done with other "oppressive" regimes, including Great Britain... all in his own words.
     The Soros people have resorted to releasing a video promoting his Open Society Institute, to try to prop up his image. They recognize that the word is getting out. And they are desperate to still try to fool us.
     Read more about Soros's Open Society Institute, here, from Discover the Networks.
     George Soros is the head of the snake.
     Glenn Beck is doing an expose on George Soros, all this week at 5pm on Fox News. But don't take his word for it. Or mine, for that matter... Do your own research.

Monday, November 8, 2010

George Soros unmasked...

     Don't forget to watch Glenn Beck Tuesday night at 5pm on Fox News.
     Learn about George Soros, his radical agenda (that is being carried out by the Obama administration), his powerful political connections, and his plans for the "fundamental transformation" of America and the world. How do you feel about a global government and a new world order, where American sovereignty ceases to exist?
     Read Soros's complete profile, here, from Discover the Networks. See the links in the left-hand sidebar.
     Here is another informative article, from Michael Moriarty.
     See the network of organizations Soros funds, here, from Discover the Networks.
     Watch all week, but especially Tuesday. Tell your friends.
     In the Three Little Pigs, the first two pigs did not heed the warnings about the wolf, and so, they were unprepared. And they got eaten.

More on Climategate...

     More proof that man-made global warming is a hoax.
     See here, from Doug Ross @ Journal.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Funny Guy Friday... Buying a sleeper sofa...

     You know that coming up with topics is getting tough when I have to write about my recent furniture purchase---but here I go.
     Cheryl and I decided that we would buy a sleeper sofa so that guests, specifically my parents, could come and spend the night, without displacing the kids. Mind you that we have more furniture in our house than an Ethan Allen showroom, but we do not have a sleeper sofa. No problem, I did a bit of research on the trusty Mac (Cheryl fell asleep and I was able to pry it from her hands in the same manner that the Grinch took the candy cane from Cindy Lou Who) and researched sleeper sofas with comfortable mattresses. Estimated purchase price $600 to $1,000.
     We hit paydirt in the first store we visited. A floor model that was the perfect size, color and with an air mattress. Cheryl loved it. Unfortunatley, the floor model came with a love seat and two tables, and we had to buy all of it or none of it. Needless to say, the asking price was way over budget. And, oh by the way, we still have that Ethan Allen issue. No problem, we can move stuff around (again) and make it all fit. The only issue left to resolve was, could I get it for less? The game was on!                              
     When it comes to buying things, I have never been a big haggler. I figure, this is the price and this is what the store wants you to pay. For instance, you do not go into McDonalds and say, "Throw in another small fry and we got ourselves a deal." I don't know much, but there are a few rules that I do know.....
     The first rule of haggling is that you have to downplay your interest. This little trick is lost on my wife. As I cooly wandered about the store exploring other options, and explaining that this was our first stop, I looked over to see Cheryl lying on the sofa, caressing the pillows and rubbing the fabric.
     Both the sales lady and I could hear her talking to nobody in particular about the perfect color, the cozy down pillows and the comfortable air mattress. Apparently, she does not know about Rule One. This should come as no surprise to me.
     Years ago, when we were looking at houses, we found one within walking distance of where we were living at the time. We toured the house and would walk past it, and every time we would see the owners, Cheryl would rave about how perfect it was for our family. I honestly don't know how those people were able to see with little $$ signs where their eyes would normally be.
     Back to the sleeper sofa... "It's a floor model," I pointed out, "hundreds of butts have been on this couch... Is that your best price?"
     The sales lady countered with, "It is regularly $4,700 and has already been drastically reduced."
     "Yeah, but it has probably had 4,700 butts of people that I don't know sitting on it, also." This was all I had. There were no marks on the couch, and the table was a bit worn, but we didn't even want the table. I am not much of a haggler, and they were sticking to the full reduced purchase price. BUT, I'll get a break on delivery, I'm sure.
     Oh, that's what I thought. They wanted 200 bucks to deliver this stuff to our house, which is less than four miles from the store. No way will I do that! Which brings us to Rule Two of haggling... We attempted to leave the store without committing to the purchase. This always works.  Surely they would stop us before we got out the door.
     There is no way that they should have let us get out that door without calling us back, and offering us a better price, I thought to myself as we drove home, hoping nobody else would buy our sofa. I assured Cheryl that when we went back in a few days they would sweeten the deal.
     After a few days, we went back to the store, only to find the salesman sitting alone in an empty showroom, playing Freecell on his computer. Imagine my humiliation when I could not even get this joker to cut us a better deal.
     We were happy to find our furniture still in the store, and Cheryl went and plopped down on the sofa. As she got up, I noticed a spot on the sofa right where she had been sitting. Now I had some haggling ammo, and mentioned to her that we were back in the game.
     Then Cheryl got up and plopped down on the love seat, and when she got up, again, I noticed a second stain right where she had been sitting. Now, I wasn't even sure I wanted to buy this stain-riddled junk, but if I did, I was definitely not paying full-reduced price.
     As I walked behind Cheryl toward the desk, I noticed that she had brown make up all over her butt... the color of which looked strikingly like the color of the stain on both the sofa and the loveseat. How ironic... It was the 4,701st butt that stained our sofa. Could it get any worse?
     Anyway, we did end up paying full price for the now stained furniture, but I stubbornly refused to pay for the delivery. I knew I could rent a U-haul for $35.00 and do it myself. After we paid, the full asking price I might add, we walked out with a promise to schedule a time to pick up the furniture, and as we were about to get out the door, the salesman caught us at the door.
     Now my hard work haggling is going to pay off as I am sure I am getting free delivery.
      "Hey, I just want to remind you that you may want to get a few ex-football players to help you with this sleeper sofa... it is pretty heavy and we can't help you." Ouch!
    With every bit of dignity I had left, I began to recruit movers. You would think a popular guy like me would have no problems recruiting people, but apparently, I have come down with a case of leprosy. Nobody was available. I should have probably called some of these guys' wives (see FGF... My wife is sooo nice!).
     Anyway, I was able to get one very nice neighbor to meet me at the store and help deliver the goods. The salesman was right, the couch was heavy... very heavy. But we managed to get it into the house, and it looks great... and I did not have to waste $200 on delivery.
     On a side note, I just got the bill from the chiropracter, and I owe him $165. On second thought, next time we buy furniture that we don't need, I will just pay the $200.

No common ground...

     This episode of the Vortex, with Michael Voris, hits the nail on the head.
     "Good Catholics don't compromise with evil, they fight it to the death and they destroy it."


This program is from RealCatholicTV.com

Watch Glenn Beck tonight and all next week... Especially Tuesday...

     Sunlight is the best disinfectant... and there have been many dark forces trying to silence Glenn Beck. Once you know who they are, you understand why.
     Watch Glenn's show tonight on Fox News at 5pm... and DVR it all next week.
     Don't miss Tuesday's show, as Glenn exposes George Soros and his ties to some very powerful people affecting our everyday lives.
     This is important for every American to see, as these dark forces are trying to destroy America. Learn what is really going on. While most people are watching one hand, you must keep your eye on the other.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Let them eat more cake...

     What is the president doing??
     His trip to India includes an entourage of upwards of 3000 people, 20 aircraft, 40 automobiles, 34 war ships, the renting of the entire Taj Mahal (800 rooms), all at the expense of a reported 2oo million dollars a day.
     Our national debt is almost 14 trillion dollars. We are broke.
     With so many Americans out of work and the prices of everything going up, everybody else is cutting back.
     And yesterday, the Fed announced that we are now printing between 600 billion and one trillion dollars to buy our own bonds to prop up our economy. Our president can hardly afford to take fancy trips. The world is watching. Why is he going?
     If your neighbors owed you trillions of dollars, and you watched them spending the money on grossly ostentatious trips, what would you think?
     This administration is purposely devaluing our dollar. How do our lenders view that? Do you think they think we will ever be capable of paying them back?
     At first I thought this was an excercise in redistribution of wealth to India, but according to the Times of India, the local shopkeepers are losing money, because they must shut down their businesses to accommodate the president. So the Indians are being put out for our president.
     The president says he wants to go to India to see the Festival of Lights, because he wants to experience it. Really?
     Something doesn't add up.

No compromise...

     Looks like "the enemy" is in the front seat now, eh President Obama?
     Maybe it was the failing economy... or the gluttonous spending... or the unbridled expansion of government... or the socialism.
     Whatever the reason, Tuesday night reflected a sweeping nationwide rebuke of President Obama's policies.
     Republicans gained no less than 63 seats in the House of Representatives, the biggest gain in a single election since World War II. Truly historical. The Republicans also picked up 680 state legislative seats across America. That's a big victory for states' rights, as well.
     Advances were made in the Senate, but I think that chamber escaped a complete turnover for two reasons. 
     First, there is no debate that Nancy Pelosi was the face of an arrogant and authoritarian ruling class that would not yield to the will of the people. The spending is controlled by the House of Representatives and the American people said, "Enough."
     Secondly, Senate races are run state-wide, so heavily populated pockets of Democrats can influence a statewide election by their sheer numbers.
     Since federal spending originates in the House, Republicans can go a long way to stop it, and to stop the advance of socialist policies. If they don't, they will not be re-elected next time. Constitutional-conservative Americans aren't fooling around anymore. 
     This was a pivotal moment for many in America. We have awakened and want a future of freedom and prosperity for our kids. Our economy will collapse if the Congress keeps spending and expanding government. 
     I thank God today. I have been praying for our civic leaders to do the right thing, and remember what their role in government ought to be... that is, protecting the individual liberties of those they were entrusted to serve. In the absense of evidence of that, I prayed for more time. Tuesday night my prayer for more time was answered as the people stepped up, voted, and pulled America back from the edge of complete disaster. 
     You might think that I would be celebrating, but I am not. Don't get me wrong... the Republican (conservative) sweep was meaningful, but only if the lawmakers do what they said they would.  We still have a long way to go to rid ourselves of politicians that do not have America's best interest at heart. We are not out of the woods yet. I still pray for more time. Our work has just begun. Stay vigilant. 
     But I do thank God for the start. And for the extra time. 
     A word to the new legislators. When it comes to defending America's founding principles of life and liberty... No compromise.

Monday, November 1, 2010

When you go to vote...

     When you go to vote, ask yourself this...
     Does the candidate I favor claim to work for the "quality of life for the most vulnerable among us," without protecting the right of the absolutely most vulnerable to even be born? I would say, Allow the children to be born, and then talk to me about how to improve their way of life.
     Ahh... quality of life. The justification for abiding, even promoting, the destruction of millions of unborn children, here and abroad.
     Our government's job is to protect our individual rights, including our right to live. Protecting us is not the same thing as providing for our material needs.
     Does your candidate stand arm in arm with protectors of life and liberty? And when I say "life," I mean the right to actual life... that is, the ability to be born.
     Or does your candidate stand with destroyers of life and liberty? Is that whom you would turn to for protection?
     If your core beliefs include the protection of life and liberty, why would you turn over your responsibilities, your treasure, and your voice to a governing body that doesn't share those core beliefs.
     A couple of years ago, the slogan was, "Yes, we can."
     We the People are not a collective... We are a collection of individuals who can help our neighbors.
     It's not, Yes, we can.
     It's, Yes, I can. Remember that.
     When it comes to empowering those in government to do what you ought to do, because they say they can and that you can't... Don't believe them. You can. Especially when they are willing to sacrifice some, for the good of the collective.
     It comes down to this when you vote... Stand up for the unborn, and for freedom, and take care of the vulnerable people yourself.
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