October 03, 2007

R-E-S-P-E-C-T, What My Country Means to Me

If you're going to come to the U.S. to benefit from our freedoms and economy but don't want to speak our language, observe our customs, assimilate into society, and honor our heritage, at least respect our laws and our flag.

Flag of Mexico Flown Illegally Over Business

I would have handled the situation differently than the person who stood up for our flag in the story, but his message was well intended and made clear. Now, this leaves the ACLU, which would consider flying these flags illegally as they were or any descreation of the U.S. flag as protected freedom of speech and even admirable.

I suggest to Mexican immigrants, especially those here illegally, that they join us like past immigrants rather than form a parallel society with a primary allegiance to their country of origin--the one which forced them to here for a better life.

Posted by Woody M. at 08:20 AM | Comments (0)

October 01, 2007

Final Bow

There are powers that be, and there are the powerful, and there is Power! Raw, Energetic Power of the Mind. Cox and Forkum have been that latter catagory for as long as I can remember being attracted to blogs. Today, they cease publishing their "Cox and Forkum" website, and the world of politics will be poorer for that.

With mixed emotions I announce: John and I will no longer be producing editorial cartoons. John will continue posting his work at his blog, John Cox Art, and he and I will continue working together on various projects, but there will be no more regularly scheduled editorial cartoons. The Web site will remain running indefinitely, as a means to market our books and as an archive of our work.

This decision is primarily mine. I will go into a little more detail below for those interested, but I want to first call attention to some closing matters:

1) The image above is the cover illustration for our final book collection. Black & White World IV will contain over 200 cartoons and caricatures. A special section will showcase the development of a few cartoons, from my rough, to John's pencial sketch, to the final product. As with our last book, signed copies are being offered for a limited time. Just click here to place your preorder. The book is slated to ship out by the end of October.

2) Signed, original art for many our editorial cartoons will soon be available for purchase. I hope to create a special Web page for the art eventually. In the meantime, if there's a cartoon you're interested in, send an inquiry to me at "contact -- at -- coxandforkum.com", and I'll let you know if it is available and at what price. Prices range from $250 to $500. Some cartoons are already gone or not for sale.

3) Be sure to visit John Cox Art daily. John has posted loads of excellent work since we launched his site in May. He's been painting, illustrating and cartooning for over 20 years. Currently you can see a page from a comic-book project he's working on. He'll be posting his Newsmaker Caricatures there too. Contact him at "johncee10 -- at -- hotmail.com" to inquire about commissions.

Let me start by saying that quitting editorial cartooning has been one of my toughest decisions. Having such a creative outlet for expressing my opinions is immensely satisfying. It's an art form I've admired for decades, so I do not take lightly having the opportunity to work in the medium and to have that work seen by others. One of my proudest moments came soon after 9/11 when I held in my hands our first published cartoon. It was easy to feel useless, even helpless, in the weeks and months following the attacks. But to be able to fight in the battle of ideas was empowering.[read the whole thing]

You will be sorely missed gentlemen, and the farewell bow is a sad thing to see.

Farewell friends, but not goodbye!

Posted by GM Roper at 10:00 AM | Comments (0)

September 17, 2007

Think Again!

Think the amnesty "fix" for illegal aliens is history? Think Again!

... Senator Richard Durbin (D–IL) announced on the Senate floor his intention to offer the Development, Relief, and Edu­cation for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act as an amend­ment to the defense authorization bill.
Think Cindy Sheehan is just an "anti-war activist? Think Again!
"You [Sheehan] give us hope and you show us that there are different Americans than those whom we know," stated Ramadan Adassi, chief of the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades terror group in the West Bank's Anskar Refugee Camp.
Think that Pelosi and Kucinich's visits to Syria will help heel in state sponsored terrorism? Think Again!
It was not clear what the ship arriving from North Korea was actually carrying, although Israeli sources largely believed it was delivering nuclear equipment, the expert told the Washington Post.
Think Madaline Allbright learned the futility of diplomacy with tyrants due to her experiences with Kim from North Korea? Think Again!
"I don't think I have ever seen the world in such a mess," Albright said to a packed house at the West Des Moines Community Center.

Albright is advising Clinton on foreign policy and believes the U.S. needs to withdraw from Iraq, stabilize the country, help in reconstruction and use a diplomatic surge.

Posted by gmroper at 09:44 AM | Comments (3)

September 16, 2007

The Freedom Concert

Angel, writing at Woman, Honor Thyself! has a terrific post up at her blog. She attended the Freedom Concert in New Jersey honoring those who have fallen in the War on Terror and setting up college scholorships for the kids they left behind. Great Pictures including one of Angel herself. Now, I get to see what she looks like, she always sends emails with a cheerful Hi and humorous spelling.

Posted by GM Roper at 11:32 AM | Comments (1)

September 07, 2007

A Fool And His Money

You've seen the lines of people waiting for hours, and hours and hours to be among the first to buy the new Apple IPhone. It cost $599.00 and required a lengthy contract with AT&T. Now, most of these folks, if not perhaps all of them had a cell phone, many had a camera on it and many had access to the internet. I would imagine more than a few had high-end Blackberrys or Treo 700's or better. So, why shell out more than $600.00 for a new gadget? Simple, because a fool and his money are soon parted, but they had to have the latest gizmo to show how cool they were, how with it, how modern, how...how... how foolish?

Then, Jobs and his crew look to take in MORE money with holiday spending so they drop the prices some $200.00 and those that spent $599.00 were LIVID. Now, any one who buys electronics knows about price drops, a very basic 66 hertz computer from Hewlett Packard cost almost $2000.00 in 1994 and now you can get one a "zillion" times faster, far more powerful, with a relative HUGE amount of memory and hard drives in the terrabit range for less than $1500.00 Ram that used to cost hundreds of dollars for a 256 bit chip now costs less than $100.00 for a gigabyte chip.

So, why are these folks griping because Apple dropped it's price? All they had to do was wait a little bit befor buying. But noooooooooooo! And now they want some money back. Give me a break!

Posted by GM Roper at 08:25 PM | Comments (7) | TrackBack (0)

September 06, 2007

One Question Poll

Our good buddy Celeste Fremon over at WitnessLA has been on a field trip between L.A. and Montanna and asking people along the way one question and one question only:

"If you could ask America’s politicians—Democrats and Republicans alike—to accomplish one task, to get one problem solved for this country, what would you pick first….if it was left completely up to you?”

She has documented the results in a series of posts titled "Voices from the Road," which are found at that link provided and which I encourage you to read. She even has pictures! (Her original planning and discussion posts are found separately here, here, and here.) Under each of her five posts (so far) I have made comments about most of what she has reported, and most of my comments have not been favorable. Here are some of the problems.

I wonder if people think for themselves any more or if they just spit back what they are fed from the press, which spits back what it is fed by the Democrats. I wonder if people do not want personal responsibility and choice and would rather have the government to do everything for them. I wonder if people have enough knowledge about the problems that they want solved to speak intelligently about those problems. How many people give political correct answers rather than what they might normally say to friends? I wonder how Americans from all parts of the country and with a balance of political persuasions would answer her question.

Well, I'm here to find out. I got so put off with the answers that she received that I said that I would do my own poll. So, here it is and we need your help. I would like you to share your thoughts on her question, and then to ask one or two other people and to share their thoughts here. To remind you, here is the approach and the question again from Celeste.

"([T]he point is, I’m asking average people who are out there making a living and trying to raise kids, not folks who take three newspapers a day or stay glued to the web—like many of us.)

"If you could ask America’s politicians—Democrats and Republicans alike—to accomplish one task, to get one problem solved for this country, what would you pick first….if it was left completely up to you?”

Okay, what do you have to say and what does your "average friend who is not glued to the web" have to say? Get started and report back. Surely, there are many people in this country who are not dependent upon government and have a little bit of knowledge about problems. We just need to show that they are there.

Oh, just one limitation. The people you poll cannot live along I-15 or be half-drunk in beer joints. Celeste has already covered those areas.

Posted by Woody M. at 07:30 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack (0)

August 24, 2007

Castro Okay - Yeah, That's the Ticket.

On Thursday, Cuba's foreign minister said rumors about Fidel Castro's deteriorating health are untrue.

Trusted Spokesman Clears Rumors


Castro rumors circulating -- again

On Friday, the rumors heated up again for the third week in a row: Fidel Castro's death would be announced, first at 2 p.m., then at 4, then at 5. ...This Friday, teary callers told Ninoska Pérez of Radio Mambí they were sure this was it, and Pérez, as usual, reminded, ``The moment will come, but this is not the moment.''

Not soon enough.

Posted by Woody M. at 05:30 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

August 02, 2007

I Wonder How Long...

The bridge collapse in Minnesota is a disaster to be sure. There are some indications that the bridge was declared "structurally deficient" as late as 2005. Powerline reports:

The Minneapolis Star Tribune reports this morning that the Highway 35 bridge that collapsed last night was rated "structurally deficient" and possibly in need of replacement when it was inspected in 2005.

This will no doubt attract a lot of interest, and it certainly could prove to be important. But apparently many bridges receive the same evaluation, and inspections in 2006 and 2007 evidently didn't reveal any cause for alarm."

The death toll appears to be around a dozen or so, and to each of those families we can only wish for their memories to be sweet and their grieving short.

The pundits and politicos in Washington will be crawling out of their slime pits to "report" on the "failure of the infrastructure" and others with BDS will be blaming Bush, the war in Iraq or or some such cause. I wonder how long it really will take? Hours? Days? Weeks? Or, nanoseconds?

Update: Apparantly Nanoseconds wins

Update 2: Dean Barnett has more on the roaches and others crawling out of the woodwork:

Let’s face it – if a bridge collapsing in Minnesota makes you angry at George W. Bush, the results of your political Rorschach Test are conclusive. You’re a nut. But a useful nut; you’re the kind of nut who probably opens your heart and your wallet to the causes that strike your fancy.

LEST I BE ACCUSED OF suggesting that the left has the exclusive franchise in this sort of monomania, the right has its sliver of kooks and misfits who jam every event into a one-size-fits-all-events ideological prism

Posted by GM Roper at 10:36 AM | Comments (12) | TrackBack (0)

July 13, 2007

Beware of Soft Shoulders

Men are attracted to soft. Soft lips, pursed for the kiss, soft laps of a grandmother to sit on when you have stubbed your toe, soft shoulders to lean against when you are weary and feeling alone. But there are soft shoulders, and there are soft shoulders. So, on the highway, when you see a sign that says Soft Shoulders, that is not a good thing. So, be aware. Be very aware!

Posted by GM Roper at 06:26 AM | Comments (11) | TrackBack (0)

July 06, 2007

Robert Heinlein, Centenary 1907-2007

Tomorrow, July 7, 2007 is the 100th birthday of Robert A. Heinlein, one of my very favorite Authors. I've read most of his output over the years, becoming a fan in 1957 as a 6th grader reading Space Cadet, then already published in 1947 or 48 I believe. Since then, I've read so many, Stranger in a Strange Land, Glory Road, Methuselah's Children, The Cat Who Walked Through Walls. So many, so much wonder, adventure and writing that captivates the young as well as the young at heart. What I didn't know, is that Heinlein also was a contributor to Edward R. Murrows radio series "This I Believe". Among his efforts was this, and reading it sent chills up and down my spine, not because it is spine chilling science fiction, but because it is what America was, and can be again if we all collectively pull our heads out and get on with the business of America. Robert A. Heinlein ladies and gentlemen:

Our Noble, Essential Decency

by Robert A. Heinlein

I am not going to talk about religious beliefs but about matters so obvious that it has gone out of style to mention them. I believe in my neighbors. I know their faults, and I know that their virtues far outweigh their faults.

Take Father Michael down our road a piece. I'm not of his creed, but I know that his goodness and charity and loving kindness shine in his daily actions. I believe in Father Mike. If I'm in trouble, I'll go to him. My next-door neighbor's a veterinary doctor. Doc will get out of bed after a hard day to help a stray cat—no fee, no prospect of a fee. I believe in Doc.

I believe in my townspeople. You can knock on any door in our town, say, "I'm hungry," and you'll be fed. Our town is no exception. I've found the same ready charity everywhere. For the one who says, "The heck with you, I've got mine," there are a hundred, a thousand, who will say, "Sure, pal, sit down." I know that despite all warnings against hitchhikers, I can step to the highway, thumb for a ride, and in a few minutes a car or a truck will stop and someone will say, "Climb in, Mack. How far you going?"

I believe in my fellow citizens. Our headlines are splashed with crime. Yet for every criminal, there are ten thousand honest, decent, kindly men. If it were not so. no child would live to grow up. Business could not go on from day to day. Decency is not news. It is buried in the obituaries, but it is a force stronger than crime.

I believe in the patient gallantry of nurses, in the tedious sacrifices of teachers. I believe in the unseen and unending fight against desperate odds that goes on quietly in almost every home in the land. I believe in the honest craft of workmen. Take a look around you. There never were enough bosses to check up on all that work. From Independence Hall to the Grand Coulee Dam, these things were built level and square by craftsmen who were honest in their bones.

I believe that almost all politicians are honest. For every bribed alderman, there are hundreds of politicians—low paid or not paid at all—doing their level best without thanks or glory to make our system work. If this were not true, we would never have gotten past the thirteen colonies.

I believe in Roger Young. You and I are free today because of endless unnamed heroes from Valley Forge to the Yalu River. I believe in—I am proud to belong to—the United States. Despite shortcomings—from lynchings, to bad faith in high places—our nation has had the most decent and kindly internal practices and foreign policies to be found anywhere in history.

And finally, I believe in my whole race—yellow, white, black, red, brown—in the honesty, courage, intelligence, durability, and goodness of the overwhelming majority of my brothers and sisters everywhere on this planet. I am proud to be a human being. I believe that we have come this far by the skin of our teeth—that we always make it just by the skin of our teeth—but that we will always make it, survive, endure.

I believe that this hairless embryo with the aching oversized braincase and the opposable thumb—this animal barely up from the apes—will endure, will endure longer than his home planet, will spread out to the other planets—to the stars and beyond—carrying with him his honesty, his insatiable curiosity, his unlimited courage, and his noble essential decency. This I believe with all my heart.

What a mind this man had.

H/T via Instapundit to John Derbyshire of "The Corner" who also notes that this essay and others are available from NPR and I think I'm headed over to Barnes & Noble to pick up a copy, even if NPR did put it out.

Posted by GM Roper at 11:51 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0)

July 05, 2007


lost in the fog copy.jpg

......GM Roper
Somewhere, in the fog, the sea brings forth a memory,
of friendships, of loves and laughter.
But, like the sea with fog hiding ships,
those memories are mixed, choppy and tossed.

My memory of youth has faded like that ship in the fog,
sharp and clear at first, gradually fading as distance
increases and the fog slowly, irresolutely but steadily
covers the vision until at last,
in the dark
it is

H/T to Raven for the photo

Posted by GM Roper at 09:44 PM | Comments (11) | TrackBack (0)

July 04, 2007

Thus began the greatest experiment in human history, the founding of a new government that was not based on a devine right of kings and queens, but of a people that had decided that they could rule themselves. And rule themselves they have. Beginning with the Declaration of Independence drafted between June 11th and June 28th and read in congress. On July 2nd 1776 Congress declaired its independence from England and on July 4th, 1776 approved the Declaration. Congress ordered the Declaration engrossed (officially inscribed) and signed on July 19th and on August 2, 1776 delagates began to sign the Declaration.

John Dunlap printed the Declaration on July 4, 1776 and of these "Dunlap Broadsides" 24 copies are known to exist. On January 18, 1777 Congress, moved to Baltimore to avoid the British, orders that signed copies of the Declaration of Independence printed by Mary Katherine Goddard of Baltimore be sent to the states. The war for independence was well underway.

From that beginning, the signers of the Declaration, pledged their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honor. Sacred honor, what a stiring phrase that is, especially now given the events in Washington, the backbiting, the political posturing and the spending, the tussels between the legislative and executive branches, the war in Iraq and Afghanistan and the invasion of our shores by peoples of another country looking for something they don't find in their home countries, work, freedom, and a chance to be somebody. Yes, they are illegal, but they also contribute something, though perhaps they cost more than they contribute.

Yet, this country, founded 231 years ago today still stands as that "bright shining city on the hill" to millions of people. If you ask a million people of countries that are, shall we say, less than ideal, less than free, a substantial majority of them will want to come to The United States of America, a country that began with people "Yearning To Be Free" and willing to fight and die for that ideal.

Many in this country are still willing to fight and die for that ideal, and far too many have given up, surrendered to political correctness and willing to bow and scrape to an ideology that in essence says "I know better how to do for you than you will ever know."

And yet, we are still that "Bright Shining City on the Hill." With God's help, and a willingness to do the right thing, to take our destiny in our hands trusting in a higher power to assist when and as necessary, we will continue to be that City.

Happy Independence Day, and always be willing to celebrate: July 4th as a day when, still, the greatest experiment of human history began, for it will never end as long as man is on the face of the earth.

Posted by GM Roper at 08:55 AM | Comments (8) | TrackBack (0)

June 29, 2007

Mavis Gets An Answer

In my post below: "We The People" I received a comment from one of my favorite folk who just happens to be somewhat Left of Center. He (and let me repeat that) HE, goes by the nom de commenter Mavis Beacon (yeah, like the typing teaching program). None the less, Mavis is thoughtful, and a good friend and we have exchanged friendly emails just about ever since I began blogging. We met over at Marc Coopers so, between Marc and Mavis, you know I seldom got a word in edgewise (Just kidding Mavis, just kidding). Mavis had a number of both observations and questions and though blogging partner Lawrence Harris provided a good answer, in fact, an excellent answer, it behooves me as host, and as a friend to provide my own take. Besides, he's a friend.

Mavis writes in the comment section:

Good post, GM. I've got some questions, though.

I know Republicans are unhappy because they aren't winning (which is reasonable enough), but I don't really get all the policy frustration. You've gotten a lot of what you wanted the past six years - various tax cuts for the wealthy, a much more conservative court, some modest abortion restrictions, pro-business environmental policy, and an all-consuming war against Islamic fundamentalists and Iraq. That's a lot of stuff on the wish list.

Pork is a problem, but I didn't hear a ton of conservatives complaining while the GOP was running the show (though certainly the porkbusters crew was around). And the immigration issue is a tough one for Republicans but there are always going to be some tough issues. That can't be the sole cause of this disaffection, can it? Also, you didn't get to dismantle Social Security or rewrite the tax code, but those were pretty ambitious items and I can't imagine you'd turn on Republicans for not quite getting those through. I'd think we'd all agree that it's a good thing you can't dramatically change a ton of American institutions too quickly and without widespread support. So where's the beef? What did you want to happen that didn't, or what did they do that made you all so mad?

Mavis, since you are such a good guy as well as a good friend, I felt that you deserved a quicker response, but I have been very busy trying to torpedo the immigration bill. OK, I'm going to re-present your words in blockquotes setting each part or each sentence by itself and follow that with my answer. Now, please understand that you complained about Dadvocate's answer as being talking points, but part of your question is talking points also, so I'll try to do my best to answer you and I hope the answer(s) are complete.

OK, first part:

I know Republicans are unhappy because they aren't winning (which is reasonable enough), but I don't really get all the policy frustration.
It is less, Mavis about winning (the Democrats won fair and square) than about the abandonment of core principles by the congressional republicans in the period of time between around 1997 and 2007. During that decade, A Republican congress, and now a Democrat congress has done exactly the opposite of what they said. I expected it of Democrats, they are known as Tax and Spenders for good reason, and the reason that T&S is a cliche is because at it's base, it is true. The Republicans on the other hand, have been spending like they expect their rich old uncle to die next week and leave them (as Pogo would say) umpty-eleven dollars. You mentioned also that "various tax cuts for the wealthy." Wow, that canard still around. The FACT is that the tax cut was the same across the board and since the poor don't pay taxes, and the wealthy are paying a higher percentage of the tax revenue, I'm not sure where that comes from. Besides, John Kennedy already showed that tax cuts stimulate economic growth for everyone, and that was when the rates on the wealthy were approaching, something lke 65% (more or less, I think) and the tax cut then had an amazing positive effect on the economy. In fact, you can show that each tax cut has spurred economic growth; it is the spending that is the problem. At any rate, part of the problem with Bushco is that there was an agreement he approved of that the cuts would only last 10 years and then automatically expire as opposed to new congressional action to make them expire. Are you ready to have your taxes go significantly up to allow the rich's taxes to go up also? Just asking.

We did get a more conservative court but Bushco even flubbed that, unless you think it was the evil-rove that tried to push Gonzalez and then Meirs on us. Loyalty is great in any administration, but not to the point when one uses the Peter Principle to pay off loyal followers. There were much better selections out there that could have gotten approval (and Alito and Roberts did in fact get substantial approval from the senate on a roll call vote). But conservatives still got a nasty taste in their mouths from Bush's efforts to push Gonzo and then Ms. Harriet on us when they were clearly not qualified. A pro business policy is also a great thing, but can be carried to far as is often the case. For example, agribusiness got a huge boost in the arm from ethanol production, to the detriment of a lot of other food availability and cost (See Victor Davis Hanson's article in IBD and, as Hanson mentions, this may well have national security implications. So, in all, we are not happy with Bushco, but it goes back much farther than the immigration fiasco of the last couple of weeks. As to the "all-consuming war against Islamic fundamentalists and Iraq" there are a number of problems with labeling it as such, but it also goes to some of the dissatisfaction with Bushco. Specifically, though I am in full favor of the war in Iraq, I'd be a fool to deny that there have not been any problems of leadership. There have been many mistakes and stupidities and the conservative dissatisfaction is less about the war, than it is about how the war has been prosecuted. Now, having said that, let me also say that some amazing things have come out of this war including the economic and social help; schools, medical clinics and hospitals, restoration of the marshlands, an economic boom in the Kurdish part of northern Iraq. The Sunni and the Shia are beginning to turn against Al Qaeda and the surge really does seem to be working and before you say higher casualties, of course there will be, we are pursuing AQ and they are fighting back, but losing and getting decimated as well.

You note:

Pork is a problem, but I didn't hear a ton of conservatives complaining while the GOP was running the show (though certainly the porkbusters crew was around). And the immigration issue is a tough one for Republicans but there are always going to be some tough issues. That can't be the sole cause of this disaffection, can it?
Actually, a whole bunch of us were griping about the increasing pork going back to about 1998 or 1999. Long before I began blogging in '04. If you search my archives, you will find entries on the shamefull spending and support of the pork busters movement as well. Immigration was and is a tough issue, you are correct about that, and one of the reasons that conservatives (and talk radio and the right side of the blogosphere and many, many independently active Americans bombarded Congress with its dissatisfaction and most of congress folded when the powers that be (Bush, Kennedy, McCain, Reid, Boxer etc) honestly believed that they could skirt Senate procedure, slip a bill under the wire, convince illegals and other Hispanics that the Dems were the best thing sliced bread, and of course the Repubs (Lott, Kyle and Graham in particular, and others in general) had to say that they were the best thing since bread. The truth of the matter is that the bill was a bad bill. Both the right and the left blogosphere knew it (albeit for different reasons) and the right took it to the president and the Senate. Then, those worthies began saying that if you didn't like the bill you were racist, you were haters, you didn't know what you were talking about and other crap. Boy, that hit the hot buttons of an awful lot of people and Bush got the brunt of the anger.

So, in essence what I'm saying is that the immigration bill, flawed as it was, was only a single straw, but one that probably broke the camel's back. We (that is conservatives) feel betrayed, not only by Bushco, but by much of the Republican establishment and we are revolting. Does that bode well for the Democrats? Perhaps, but it is also likely to cause a major recruitment effort to elect responsible conservatives and to push to make sure that the Democrats don't get to keep the House or the Senate and that the White House stays in our hands.

Third party time? No, I don't think so, though I could be wrong. If you will check back political posts such as the open letter to Trent Lott and to the Republicans, you will see that the anger has been there for some time, though many of us have continued to support the Repubs over the Democrats because they are A) just as corrupt, if not more so (and to be honest, I think more so) and they are liberal to boot, thus, they think government is the answer to everything. A good example of this is Joe Biden recently talking about the incidence of AIDS in the black community stating that it was the fault of the medical community and us white folk for not pushing education about aids enough in the black community and teaching black youth that wearing a condom doesn't make you less manly. No Senator, the responsibility lies with parents, with the neighborhood, with individuals and the need to instill a sense of personal responsibility. If 16% of the youth are black and they represent 65% of the new cases of AIDS, what does that say about the degeneration of family in the black community - exactly as Daniel Patrick Moynahan said and he was a LIBERAL.

Moving along:

you didn't get to dismantle Social Security
No, we didn't and that is a train wreck that is a commin' down the tracks. Social Security problems started back in the Late 40's and early 50's when it stopped being a stop-gap and started to be the premier way to old age support. Roosevelt did not intend for it to be the sole support of the elderly, he meant it as "additional" savings and if it had stayed that way, it might have made it, but in the mid to late 50's the move towards something like Medicare began and Medicare was funded in the mid 60's. I still remember Hubert H. Humphrey "swear" that it would never cost more than 18 billion dollars. Well, guess he was a little bit wrong wasn't he. Elderly folk vote, and are the most consistent voters there are. As soon as the politicians noted this, they began buying votes with add-ons including Bushco and his Medicare prescription drug benefit. Wait the the bill on that boondoggle comes due. Your kids and my grand kids Mavis, will be working to pay in as much as 60% of their wages just to support Social Security and it's perks if something isn't done. No, Social Security didn't get fixed, in part because of the cowardice of the Repubs and in part because of the cowardly demonization of Repubs by the Dems over Social Security.

Lastly you mention the Tax code and you are once again correct, this is a burr under the saddle of many conservatives, not because it didn't pass, there are too many special interests keeping it alive. From CPA's and Tax Attorneys (sorry Woody) to corporate interest, to homeowners deductions etc. The tax code is so cumbersome that not even IRS experts all give the same, or even accurate advice, yet the pressure is to add to the code, or keep the status quo. That will eventually produce a result of chaos, and it is rapidly headed there now.

So, I guess the answer to where's the beef is all inclusive, overly intrusive government, being lied to by those we elected congressmen and senators, Demos and Repubs alike. (and no, I am not talking about WMD lies - that is another canard)

It is truly an accumulation of things, all of it adding up to being overly governed, and misgoverned and the Democrats are as much at fault as the Republicans, maybe even more so since they promised to clean up the mess and have done nothing except exacerbate it bringing congressional approval rates down to less than half of the Presidents, and he deserves his rate.

Hope that answers your question Mavis, take care and thanks for commenting.

Posted by GM Roper at 08:04 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0)

June 26, 2007

We The People.

The three most important words in the English language other than expressions of love or faith. And yet, even those three words make possible in this country free and unfettered expression of religion and faith.

Yet, it would seem that not enough people in this country, and certainly not enough people in the United States Senate or United States House of Representatives understand that these three words are central to our form of governance.

We The People, three words that when the constitution was written meant that a new establishment of government was being initiated in the midst of a world, raised on royalty. From the ancient Persians to the Kingdom of Hawaii, from the Aztec to the Germans, from the French to the Norwegians, from the English to the Ottoman Empire heads of state derived their power from God or from some deity or from Muhammad. Nowhere, was there a peoples who proclaimed for themselves that "We The People" were and would be the source of our own destiny. We established on this earth something never seen before except in some prototypical democracies, a Republic, as Lincoln so aptly stated "Of the people, by the people and for the people."

What a radical idea some two hundred plus years ago: We The People. The People themselves took responsibility for their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honor, not ordained by God as a "Divine" right to rule passed down from father to son under some form of empire or monarchy, but from a peoples decision through their elected representatives to be in charge of themselves. Or as Ben Franklin is said to have said in response to the query "Well, Dr. Franklin, what do we have? A republic or a monarchy?" Wise old Franklin is quoted as saying "A Republic, if you can keep it."

And keep it we have, through invasion by the British during the war of 1812, a terrible civil war pitting neighbor against neighbor, a war against Spain, against imperial Germany and the fascist Axis powers, through the cold war in which a mistake of intent or interpretation could have resulted in thermonuclear mutual destruction. But, today, today is different, today we have forgotten and our elected leaders have forgotten what the real meaning of We the People.

In September of 2005, We the People began to organize around an idea promoted by Glenn Reynolds of the Instapundit fame and N.Z. Bear of The Truth Laid Bear called Porkbusters. The idea, spread by the people, taken up by the people was to call down grief on legislators that thought bringing home the bacon was all that they were elected to do, by hook, by crook or by earmark. One of the more egregious porkers, one Senator Trent Lott. Now, please don't get the idea that Senator Lott is the only scoundrel in congress on a diet of pork, pork and more pork, but he is the ONLY one who said:

I'll just say this about the so-called porkbusters. I'm getting damn tired of hearing from them. They have been nothing but trouble..."
Sadly, this merely underscores that we have recently gone from We the People to those who are, as Newt Gingrich just recently said, "... the inarticulate and unimaginative leaders all across government who now preside instead of lead." (H/T to Glenn Reynolds)

Preside, as in reigning? I thought we had gotten rid of that in 1776. If we indeed did get rid of monarchy in 1776 (although it did take a few years of force of arms to convince the Brits that we meant it) and if as Franklin said "...if we can keep it," how did it end up that one of our more articulate politicians decide that our current leaders "all across government" are "presiding?" And therein lies the rub, for indeed we the people (notice, no longer caps) have pretty much abdicated our responsibility to our leaders rulers.

And this is pretty sad, because we have forgotten our power, we have forgotten the sacrifices of those that came before us and we have forgotten the very core of this republic. We the people hold the power to set to rights our own governance. We the people have the responsibility to let those in Washington know where the power, and the right reside. We The People!

There are myriad ways for us to regain our power, myriad ways in which the power of the people, inviolate, right and strong can be expressed. From the people demanding term limits, to people voting out the rascals in toto, to town hall meetings across this great land where we hear the voices of the true common man; the ditch digger, the teacher, the Marine or the Soldier, the plumber and the dentist. Where our voices become united in decrying what those who think they are the masters, but indeed are, and should be the factotums of our society have done. And we, dear people, have allowed that to happen.

But we can reclaim our birthright. We can, through the power of the ballot box teach lessons that those going to Washington will not soon forget, but we cannot do it if we allow those in Washington to dictate the terms of the debate. America has spoken about the current "amnesty bill" and yet those who should be listening are not, and yet they are not leading either, they are engineering methods and ways for themselves to stay in power. If you think that amnesty is not about future votes and which "party" gets the lions share, you are sadly mistaken. If you think that unparalleled spending on pork (the current numbers of earmarks exceed, 32,000 read that again thirty. two. thousand.) that averages almost 60 earmarks for each Congressman and Senator. And yet we have done nothing to curtail this practice effectively. Oh, to be sure we are trying with organizations such as Porkbusters, Citizens Against Government Waste and the Sunlight Foundation, but the people have yet to raise their voices in unison and shout ENOUGH.

Recently, the Democrat Party ran an effective election campaign promising to bring responsibility to spending in congress. Many of us took that with a grain fifty pound bag of salt, but they won any way, fair and square. They mounted an effective campaign and convinced enough voters to give them complete control of the House and near complete control of the Senate (but only because two independents caucus with and usually vote with the Democrats). But the changes haven't materialized, in fact, it seems nothing so much as Glenn Reynolds put it, "Meet the new boss, same as the old boss."

I'm hoping this post will inspire people to gather together and decide to take back their country and their government, not by armed revolution, not by denigrating people of the opposite political party(s) but by discussing needs and desires, by ironing out political differences so that an excitement builds, and people gather together to defeat the entrenched politicos of any party much as the fabled Minutemen gathered together to shake off the shackles of the King of England, not by armed insurrection, but by the power granted to us in our constitution, so that once again this government becomes a representation of

We The People!

Posted by GM Roper at 11:23 PM | Comments (12) | TrackBack (0)

May 29, 2007

Baseball - All American Play

It's nice to be reminded about one of the 100 Classic Moments in the history of baseball by the National Baseball Hall of Fame. The image of a major league baseball player snatching an American flag from liberals trying to set it on fire, although thirty-one years ago, brings a smile to my face today.

A summary from an L.A. Dodgers press release:

On that day in 1976, Monday was playing center field for the Chicago Cubs during a game at Dodger Stadium. Though the Vietnam War had ended the year before, it didn't stop two protestors from trying to burn an American flag on the outfield grass.

Once the fans reached left-center, one of them took out a match and tried to light it. At that point, (Rick) Monday raced towards them and just before they could set fire to the flag, he reached down and grabbed it from underneath them.

More detailed coverage along with links to a video are found at Major League Baseball and NewsBusters. Most of the story is reproduced in the "read more link" below. Try to take time to view the video, too.

Continue reading "Baseball - All American Play"
Posted by Woody M. at 05:40 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

May 17, 2007

Amnesty for Illegals

Deal to Legalize Millions of Illegal Immigrants

What's next? The liberals are calling this a "good start." Isn't a deal ever a deal with them?

Create your poster at Parody Motivator Generator

Posted by Woody M. at 06:40 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

May 06, 2007

Ladies and Gentlemen, may I present my beloved daughter, Jennifer Michele Becker, nee Roper!

Posted by GM Roper at 05:00 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0)

April 03, 2007

Try To Remember - Jerry Orbach

Jerry Orbach died on December 28, 2004 of prostate cancer. Another light dimmed by this damned disease. I had forgotten that he was El Gallo in the original off-Broadway production of The Fantasticks.

A tip O' The GM Derby to Fausta

Posted by GM Roper at 08:18 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Happy Blogiversary Jeremayakovka!

JMK Logo.jpgThe photograph to the left (and that is the only leftish part of this guy) is the logo of one Jeremayakovka a triparte name adopted by my blogbuddy Jeremiah. The name is a derivative of his three "muses," the prophet Jeremiah, poet Vladimir Mayakovsky, and novelist Franz Kafka. JMK (as we in the blogworld refer to him) states:

Why these three? Did any of them enjoy wealth? No. Power? No. Love? Well, not exactly . . . . What they "enjoyed" was fidelity to their visions, dystopian or utopian -- of G-d; of revolution; of art -- sensed in the core and which bore them to extremes. They inform some of the intentions and explain some of the results of my life thus far.

So it's time to do away with another aspect of that very young man's silent oath: because "someday" never comes, the time is always NOW. Stick around Jeremayakovka and together we will pause, reflect, and reckon, together we will dream and -- yes, once again -- dare.

(Cynical) critics be damned.


And dare he has. I first came across his blog from a link I found on another blog (the memory of which has been lost in the mists time) or perhaps a comment left somewhere, and went to his blog. JMK is one of those folks who makes you think, that is one of the reasons I nominated him for the Thinking Bloggers Award. but more than that, JMK is a true gentleman in the very best sense of the word. Always encouraging to his friends, disdainful of those he believes are deliberately dense (as opposed to say, un-enlightened). JMK is a worthy blog and I hope you will drop by and wish him

Happy Blogiversary!

Posted by GM Roper at 07:48 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

April 01, 2007

Happy Birthday Whittaker Chambers

Jeremayakovka has a terrific post up on the 106th Birthday of Whittaker Chambers, the spiritual father of modern American conservatism.

For Chambers, whose Communist resume included writing for and editing the journal New Masses, had in 1939 been brought onto the editorial board of Time magazine. Chambers empathically lamented the Yalta Conference in his prophetic essay, "Ghosts on the Roof," which appeared in Time's March 5, 1945 issue. "Ghosts" broke the mould in editorial commentary. In haunting and magisterial tones it posited the undead ghosts of Russia's assassinated Romanovs gathering to note, with wry brooding from beyond their unmarked graves, the achievement through Soviet power of the fallen dynasty's own ambitions -- imperial domination over as broad a swath of humanity as possible.
Don't miss this or Part II coming soon!

Posted by GM Roper at 07:08 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thinking Bloggers Award


The little badge above has now been placed on my sidebar, because I have been honored by three different bloggers with the Thinking Bloggers Award. This is something that has recently been passed around from blogger to blogger honoring those that make you think. Having said that, I'm honored that Seth at Hard-A-Starboard, Raven at And Rightly So and AOW at Always on Watch think enough of my efforts to add me to this august group. I was also mentioned by Mustang at Social Sense, not as an honoree, but as his blogfather. Mustang, thanks my friend, you are indeed one of the truly nice guys!

Participation in the Thinking Bloggers Award is dictated by three simple rules:

For those nominees who wish to participate, pass the rules to the blogs you are tagging They include:

1. Write a post with links to five (5) blogs that make you think.

2. Link to this post so that others can locate the origin of the meme – the blogger who holds you in high regard.

3. Optional: Display the ‘Thinking Blogger Award’ with a link to the post that you wrote.

One of the reasons I got into blogging in the first place was to be able to express my thoughts on psychology, humor and of course politics. I love politics, all day, all night, rain or shine. But that is not all that I love, I also love reading interesting posts from others, and the more they make me think, the better I like it. Now, I'm picking about 30 or so bloggers that make me think, and I highly respect all of them, but I'm limited to posting on five. So, with no thought of denegrating those I can't list because of the rules, I name:
  • Rick Calvert who writes The Real Ugly American

  • Oyster who writes Soy Como Soy

  • Avman who writes Louisiana Conservative

  • Chrys who writes at Pettifog Jots and Tittles

  • Jeremayakovka who writes at what else but Jeremayakovka

    And there you have it. All of these are good reads and they will make you think. Please give them a look, and make sure that you bookmark the sites.

    Posted by GM Roper at 12:54 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)
  • March 21, 2007

    Goodbye Cathy, We Hardly Knew Ye!

    Cathy.jpgThe lady at the left, with the improbably colored sunglasses and the wild wind tossed mane and that great big beautiful smile is gone. Cathy Seipp has died today at about 2:40 PM Pacific time.

    Cathy, for those of you who didn't read her was a conservative blogger with wit, verve and a panache that was not to be believed. Her very good friend Susan Estrich wrote a wonderful remembrance of Cathy. A tidbit:

    "It has been almost five years since they opened her up and closed her again, concluding that the cancer was inoperable and sending her off for chemotherapy, although for the first three and a half years, she never wrote about it, because she “didn’t want to be written off as Lung Cancer Girl.”

    "That’s Cathy. Smart, funny, tough, loving. You couldn’t help but think as she encouraged Maia to skip senior year in high school and apply to college early for more than the combination of the Canadian tradition of surpassing the12th grade and Maia’s own desire for bigger challenges. It was also Cathy sending her off, getting her settled, making the point that she was entitled to her life."

    This is a lovely and moving tribute please read it.

    Cathy's Daughter Maia posted on her mother's death only 3 hours later, out of love, out of responsibility, out of appreciation for all of Cathy's readers and friends. Please, read Maia's post as well and consider making a donation to the Lung Cancer Alliance per Maia's request.

    As my readers know, this is an insidious disease, it sneaks up on you with little fanfare and few symptoms until it is often to late. Most lung cancer patients don't get the diagnosis until it is far advanced. I was one of the lucky ones, mine was caught very early sheerly by luck as I had gone in for knee surgery. Had the cancer come 6 months earlier, or 6 months after the operation, I would likely not have know until it was too late.

    I'm probably going to beat my disease, but if it comes back, as it may well do, I hope that I can face it with the guts, determination and aplomb that Cathy Seipp had. God Rest ye Cathy, you've earned your peace!

    Posted by GM Roper at 06:57 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack (0)

    March 06, 2007

    Old Europe, New Europe and America

    One of my favorite sites is The Return of Scipio, authored by my good friend Mike. Now, Mike and I probably don't see eye to eye on everything but we see eye to eye on enough that if we were neighbors, we'd be at the gossip fence if we weren't sleeping or at work. Mike has written a post entitled Dangerous Nation in which he discusses another poll discussing the worlds "hatred of America" (and Israel of course). What caught my eye was the following:

    What Metternich himself wrote about America almost 200 years ago could have been written today by—you guessed it—the effete and decayed metrosexual elites of the world.

    If this flood of evil doctrines and pernicious examples should extend… what would become of the moral force of our governments…?

    Easy answer, Metternich: Nothing will become of it. The ‘the moral force’ of the Europe you admired is spent. It wasted its time and imaginings on the silly gibberings of Rousseau and Voltaire. It squandered its energies on nazism and fascism and socialism and communism. It sacrificed its best in the trenches of WW I. It gave over the Chosen to the ovens of the Third Reich."

    Read the whole thing, and leave Mike a comment.

    Posted by GM Roper at 08:08 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

    January 31, 2007

    Cooking Up A Storm

    Hungry? Want some terrific food ideas? Then I encourage you to purchase "Blogalicious!: A Cookbook of Favorite Recipes from the Blogosphere" Edited by a GREAT LADY Deborah Uhler! Deborah contacted me several months ago (and many more of your favorites from the Blogosphere) and solicited a favorite Recipe from me and and a whold bunch of other bloggers. My contrabution is "Norma's Peach Upside Down Cake" found on page 141. This is a really good cookbook and I encourage you to get a copy. The introduction is written by Glenn Reynolds and the cover art is by Cox and Forkum. With a start like that, how can you go wrong?


    Posted by GM Roper at 07:13 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

    January 26, 2007

    Crabby Old Man!

    Sent to me by my beloved Uncle who may be liberal, and old, but I don't think he has ever been crabby a day in his life (well, maybe when Bush was elected!) - Thanks Uncle Jimmy!

    Author unknown, but this is winging its way around the internet.

    Crabby Old Man

    What do you see nurses? .......What do you see?
    What are you thinking......when you're looking at me?
    A crabby old man, ....not very wise,
    Uncertain of habit ........with faraway eyes?

    Who dribbles his food.......and makes no reply.
    When you say in a loud voice....."I do wish you'd try!"
    Who seems not to notice ....the things that you do.
    And forever is losing .............. a sock or shoe?

    Who, resisting or not...........lets you do as you will,
    With bathing and feeding ...... the long day to fill?
    Is that what you're thinking? Is that what you see?
    Then open your eyes, nurse......you're not looking at me.

    I'll tell you who I am ....... as I sit here so still,
    As I do at your bidding, .....as I eat at your will.
    I'm a small child of Ten......with a father and mother,
    Brothers and sisters .......who love one another

    A young boy of Sixteen ...........with wings on his feet
    Dreaming that soon now. .........a lover he'll meet.
    A groom soon at Twenty .........my heart gives a leap.
    Remembering, the vows........that I promised to keep.

    At Twenty-Five, now .......... I have young of my own.
    Who need me to guide ...... and a secure happy home.
    A man of Thirty ......... my young now grown fast,
    Bound to each other ......... with ties that should last.

    At Forty, my young sons ........have grown and are gone,
    But my woman's beside me........to see ! I don't mourn.
    At Fifty, once more, ......... babies play 'round my knee,
    Again, we know children ........ my loved one and me.

    Dark days are upon me .......... my wife is now dead.
    I look at the future ...........I shudder with dread.
    For my young are all rearing .......young of their own.
    And I think of the years...... and the love that I've known.

    I'm now an old man.........and nature is cruel.
    Tis jest to make old age .......look like a fool.
    The body, it crumbles..........grace and vigor, depart.
    There is now a stone........where I once had a heart.

    But inside this old carcass ...... a young guy still dwells,
    And now and again .......my battered heart swells.
    I remember the joys.............. I remember the pain.
    And I'm loving and living.............life over again.

    I think of the years ....all too few......gone too fast.
    And accept the stark fact........that nothing can last.
    So open your eyes, people .........open and see..
    Not a crabby old man. Look closer....see........ME!!

    Remember this poem when you next meet an older person who you
    might brush aside without looking at the young soul within.....we will all,
    one day, be there, too!

    Posted by gmroper at 07:28 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0)

    January 19, 2007

    Fotos From Florida

    Just a few photographs of God's Creation along with a couple of comments. Enjoy!

    Nothing says BEAUTY like a rose!

    Continue reading "Fotos From Florida"
    Posted by GM Roper at 07:57 AM | Comments (10) | TrackBack (0)

    January 17, 2007

    A Study In Contrasts

    Sometimes, nature is more interesting than politics. This is one of those times the top photo was taken in Florida last Friday, the second taken in Austin after an ice storm.

    flowers and sky.jpg

    Taken in Orlando, Florida January 12, 2007 (photo by GM Roper)

    ice leaf.bmp
    Taken in Austin, Texas January 15, 2007 (photo by Mike Becker)

    P.S., the hands in the second photo are my daughter's hands, the photographer is her fiancee'

    Posted by GM Roper at 07:43 AM | Comments (8) | TrackBack (0)

    January 05, 2007

    GM Takes A Vacation

    Having endured a year of cancer treatment and various and sundry assults on My poor old body (yeah, stress the OLD part....ed!) the Bride and I are off on a well earned vacation. Woody will keep up the semi-regular posting for me, hope each of you keeps safe and sound till I return sometime after the 14th of the month. I'll bring back some tantalizing pictures of and the Bride and I sharing the Joys of Disney World and Sundry places in and around Orlando, Florida. So, if any of you are going to be in that area, please email me and we'll try to get together.

    Cheers to all.

    Posted by GM Roper at 08:22 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0)

    December 27, 2006

    Gerald R. Ford, Requiescat in Pace

    Gerald Ford, the "Man Who Pardoned Nixon" and perhaps one of the more courageous Presidents because of that, knowing the vilification he would receive and doing it any way has died. He was 93.

    I remember being dejected when it was discovered what a creep Spiro Agnew was and he resigned in disgrace. Then, a ray of hope. Nixon nominated Gerald R. Ford to be Vice President. The joke (promulgated by LBJ) was that Ford couldn't walk and chew gum at the same time. But America knew better, and knew that Ford was an honest man, a strong man, a real leader. Ford was approved by the U.S. Senate and the House of Representatives on Dec. 6, 1973. Following Nixon's resignation, Ford assumed the Presidency and was sworn in as Nixon's plane headed westward.

    The initial popularity of Ford soon nose dived one month later as he pardoned Nixon, a decision he stood by all these years. And, truth be known, was probably the right decision, but it was Ford's decision to make and no one elses. Ford believed he was saving the country from a criminal trial that would have had more focus than it really deserved. Ford standing up to the "powers that be" who wanted Nixon's head on a silver platter has to be a mark of political courage seldom seen and as the election of 1976 proved, would cost him.

    Ford's decision to seek a second term in 1976 was not all that controversial, but being challenged for a second term by Ronald Reagan was. Reagan did not get the nomination, but he gave it one heck of a good shot and did get it in 1980. The struggle in the Republican party was matched by an equal struggle in the Democratic party and which saw a political unknown reach for the prize. Jimmy Carter got the Democratic nomination and beat Gerald Ford in the 1976 election. Carter ran as a "born again" christian, got a great deal of publicity from an interview in Playboy magazine, was perceived as "honest" and had a "tremendous" record as Governor of the State of Georgia, both of which are, to this individual false.

    It should be obvious to anyone who can think their way out of a wet paper sack, that the better man did not win in 1976.

    Gerald R. Ford, born July 14, 1913 died December 26, 2006. Requiescat in Pace

    More Coverage at:
    Right On The Right
    Gribbit's Word
    and Ms. Underestimated
    at Hugh Hewitt and a round up at The Thunder Run

    Posted by GM Roper at 07:10 AM | Comments (10) | TrackBack (0)

    December 25, 2006

    Merry Christmas Everyone

    9 And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.

    10 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.

    Merry Christmas

    Thank you AOW and Merry Christmas my very dear Friend.

    Posted by gmroper at 11:59 PM | Comments (16) | TrackBack (0)

    December 07, 2006

    A Letter From God

    Dear children,

    It has come to my attention that many of you are upset that folks are taking My name out of the season. Maybe you've forgotten that I wasn't actually born during this time of the year and that it was some of your predecessors who decided to celebrate My birthday on what was actually a time of pagan festival. Although I do appreciate being remembered anytime.

    How I personally feel about this celebration can probably be most easily understood by those of you who have been blessed with children of your own. I don't care what you call the day. If you want to celebrate My birth just, GET ALONG AND LOVE ONE ANOTHER. Now, having said that let Me go on.

    If it bothers you that the town in which you live doesn't allow a scene depicting My birth, then just get rid of a couple of Santas and snowmen and put in a small Nativity scene on your own front lawn. If all My followers did that there wouldn't be any need for such a scene on the town square because there would be many of them all around town.

    Stop worrying about the fact that people are calling the tree a holiday tree instead of a Christmas tree. It was I who made all trees. You can and may remember Me anytime you see any tree. Decorate a grapevine if you wish: I actually spoke of that one in a teaching explaining who I am in relation to you and what each of our tasks were. If you have forgot that one, look up John 15:1 - 8.

    If you want to give Me a present in remembrance of My birth here is my wish list. Choose something from it.

    1. Instead of writing protest letters objecting to the way My birthday is being celebrated, write letters of love and hope to soldiers away from home. They are terribly afraid and lonely this time of year. I know, they tell Me all the time.

    2. Visit someone in a nursing home. You don't have to know them personally. They just need to know that someone cares about them.

    3. Instead of writing George complaining about the wording on the cards his staff sent out this year, why don't you write and tell him that you'll be praying for him and his family this year. Then follow up. It will be nice hearing from you again.

    4. Instead of giving your children and grandchildren a lot of gifts you can't afford and they don't need, spend time with them. Tell them the story of My birth, and why I came to live with you down here. Hold them in your arms and remind them that I love them.

    5. Pick someone that has hurt you in the past and forgive him or her.

    6. Did you know that some people in your town will attempt to take their own life this season because they feel so alone and hopeless? Since you don't know who those persons are, try giving everyone you meet a warm smile it could make the difference. Also, you might consider supporting the local Hot-Line: they talk with people like that every day.

    7. Instead of nit picking about what the retailer in your town calls the holiday, be patient with the people who work there. Give them a warm smile and a kind word. Even if they aren't allowed to wish you a "Merry Christmas" that doesn't keep you from wishing them one. Then stop shopping there on Sunday. If the store didn't make so much money on that day they'd close and let their employees spend the day at home with their families.

    8. If you really want to make a difference, support a missionary, especially one who takes My love and Good News to those who have never heard My name. You may already know someone like that.

    9. Here's a good one. There are individuals and whole families in your town who not only will have no "Christmas" tree, but neither will they have any presents to give or receive. If you don't know them (and I suspect you don't) buy some food and a few gifts and give them to the Marines, the Salvation Army or some other charity which believes in Me and they will make the delivery for you.

    10. Finally if you want to make a statement about your belief in and loyalty to Me, then behave like a Christian. Don't do things in secret that you wouldn't do in My presence. Let people know by your actions that you are one of mine.

    P.S. Don't forget; I am God and can take care of Myself. Just love Me and do what I have told you to do. I'll take care of all the rest. Check out the list above and get to work; time is short. I'll help you, but the ball is now in your court. And do have a most blessed Christmas with all those whom you love and remember, I LOVE YOU.

    (Sent to me by my beloved brother, God Authored it, writer unknown)

    Posted by gmroper at 07:28 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack (0)

    December 04, 2006

    The Month Before Christmas (How the PC Police Stole Christmas)

    Twas the month before Christmas
    When all through our land,
    Not a Christian was praying
    Nor taking a stand.

    Why the Politically Correct Police had taken away,
    The reason for Christmas - no one could say.
    The children were told by their schools not to sing,
    About Shepherds and Wise Men and Angels and things.

    It might hurt people's feelings, the teachers would say
    December 25th is just a "Holiday".
    Yet the shoppers were ready with cash, checks and credit
    Pushing folks down to the floor just to get it!

    CDs from Madonna, an X BOX, an I-pod
    Something was changing,
    something quite odd!
    Retailers promoted Ramadan and Kwanzaa
    In hopes to sell books
    by Franken & Fonda.

    As Targets were hanging their trees upside down
    At Lowe's the word Christmas - was no where to be found.
    At K-Mart and Staples and Penny's and Sears
    You won't hear the word Christmas; it won't touch your ears.

    Inclusive, sensitive, Di-ver-si-ty
    Are words that were used to intimidate me.
    Now Daschle, Now Darden, Now Sharpton, Wolf Blitzen
    On Boxer, on Rather, on Kerry, on Clinton!

    At the top of the Senate, there arose such a clatter
    To eliminate Jesus, in all public matter.
    And we spoke not a word, as they took away our faith
    Forbidden to speak of salvation and grace.

    The true Gift of Christmas was exchanged and discarded
    The reason for the season, stopped before it started.
    So as you celebrate "Winter Break" under your "Dream Tree"
    Sipping your Starbucks, listen to me.

    Choose your words carefully, choose what you say
    Shout MERRY CHRISTMAS, not Happy Holiday!
    (Author Unknown)

    Hmmm, just wondering why no one considers offending Christians offensive, prejudicial or hateful?

    Posted by gmroper at 06:30 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack (0)

    November 22, 2006

    Jim Hitchcock's Possum Pie

    Jim Hitchcock, a very good blog friend, frequent commenter and putative liberal (though he isn't really as liberal as he would like you to think, nor is he as conservative as I would like him to be> made a suggestion in a previous post regarding holiday fare. To whit:

    Succulent opposum, stewed in its own juices. Sure to be greedily consumed, ironically enough, by beer infused college football fans stewed in their own juices.
    Now, you never know when Jim is kidding, he has such a dry sense of humor, when he is dry that is. So, I took it on myself to hunt up a receipe for Possum Pie that even Jim would go for:

    Continue reading "Jim Hitchcock's Possum Pie"
    Posted by GM Roper at 06:07 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

    Giving Thanks!

    All too often, we cast a jaded eye at all that we have earned and all that we have received. This year, Thanksgiving is especially sweet for me, I am here to enjoy it. In January I was diagnosed with lung cancer and through the efforts of my family Doc, a terrific surgeon, an amazing oncologist and the care and friendship of the nurses at the cancer center where I received my chemo-therapy I am here. I do not know if the cancer will return, I do know that it is gone now and I am cancer free. For that I give thanks.

    I also give thanks for my beloved family. For Shirley Melbert Roper and George M. Roper, Jr. both deceased, thank you for giving me life, for teaching me about the love of God and how to love Him in return. Thank you for teaching me about love of country and all the goodness that I find here. Thank you for my late sister Pam for the years of friendship and a shoulder to cry on now and then. Thank you for my younger brothers Bert and Doug for all the laughter, back rubs and just plain silliness that has consumed our lives along with the tears we have shed together. Thank you for Cyndy, my late first wife for sticking with me for 27 years and helping me raise Jennifer, my wonderful daughter who remains the light of my life. Thank you especially for Jennifer, a child who has brought more joy than heartache, who laughed as a child and the laugh lit up the darkest room and who still calls me "daddy" the most wonderful word in the world.

    Thank you for Norma, my wife of the last 9 years, you who have wrapped me in a blanket of love and caring and sat with me through the illness, never giving up and never letting me give up either.

    Thank you for all the folks in the United States military, those of you who serve and never heard a shot fired in anger and those of you who have suffered and died to preserve this wonderful nation.

    Thank you for all of my readers who in the past two years of blogging have encouraged me, who have sent comments to my entries and winged prayers my way when I was ill. Thank you to all my blogging associates whom I have grown to love dearly, who have caused me to smile, to frown, and yes, to even get angry from time to time, for it is in the expression of deep felt emotion that we all become truly alive. Thank you for Woody, for him being a friend, a confidant and for being my co-author on this blog. Woody, your friendship means more to me than I can say.

    Thank you for my Grandparents George and Marion Roper for raising a fine son, my dad. Thank you also for my other Grandparents Nat and Ethel Melbert, for teaching me humility and how love transcends trials and tribulations.

    Thank you for my Uncle Jimmy and Aunt LaVerne who have loved me all these years and for my cousins Bruce and Kay who have always provided me with a smile when I think of them. Thank you for my Aunt Betty, who gave me shelter when I was in college, and who taught me the value of friendship.

    Thank you also for each and every one of my readers and fellow citizens who have turned to another with a smile or an encouraging word, for those who have donated their time and wealth to giving to others asking nothing for themselves. Thank you for those that respond in kind to kindnesses extended.

    Give thanks tomorrow for all that you have, kneel down and be aware that though this country is beset with problems, with trials and tribulations and threaded with many imperfections, it is still a lamp to the world, and still that "Shining City On The Hill."

    God bless us, each and every one.

    Posted by GM Roper at 10:15 AM | Comments (17) | TrackBack (0)

    October 15, 2006

    Freddy Fender Dies At 69

    Baldemar Huerta, aka Freddy Fender has died at age 69. And though he lived in Corpus Christi, Texas his home was San Benito, Texas just down the road from me. I've been listening to his songs since the mid seventies when I moved to a little town named Harlingen in '76.

    Earlier this year, Fender was diagnosed with lung cancer, about the same time I was. I'm here, he's gone and while I'm delighted to still be around, his Tex-Mex tenor voice will be missed.

    In his "guestbook" one of his fans said:

    I cherish the memories of dancing to your music with my Grandmother and Mother - I will miss you as much as I miss them. Play for them up there, so they can dance - I'll be there someday and join in. Till then my friend. Peace.

    "And I'll be there before the next teardrop falls." R.I.P. Freddy

    Posted by GM Roper at 06:58 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

    August 14, 2006

    This Date in History - Thanks to God

    Worth remembering and reflection....and, application to today's world.

    American Minute for August 14th

    Emperor Hirohito surrendered August 14, 1945. The next day, in a statement regarding the Jewish New Year, President Truman wrote: "The enemies of civilization who would have destroyed completely all freedom of religion have been defeated. All faiths unite in thanksgiving to Almighty God on our victory over the forces of evil." On August 16, 1945, Truman proclaimed a Day of Prayer: "The warlords of Japan...have surrendered unconditionally...This is the end of the...schemes of dictators to enslave the peoples of the world, destroy their civilization, and institute a new era of darkness and degradation...Our global victory has come from the courage...of free men and women united in determination to fight. It has come from the massive strength of arms...created by peace-loving peoples who knew that unless they won decency in the world would end. It has come from millions of peaceful citizens...turned soldiers overnight-who showed a ruthless enemy that they were not afraid to fight...It has come with the help of God, Who was with us in the early days of adversity and...Who has now brought us to this glorious day of triumph. Let us give thanks to Him and...dedicated ourselves to follow in His ways."
    Posted by Woody M. at 09:50 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0)

    July 14, 2006

    What Does A Living Wage Look Like?


    The Democratic Party and the left (not always the same thing) have been agitating for a substantial raise, to a "living wage" the federal minimum wage law. Currently, and for many years, the federal minimum wage has been $5.15 an hour and the generic left (in which this time I'm including the Democrats) would like to see that raised. I've seen suggestions ranging from $6.00 an hour up to $12.00 an hour. When anyone suggests that price increases passed on by businesses and or job loss from small firms may result, the outcry typically is that Republicans and Conservatives (again, not necessarily the same thing) hate the poor and don't want the rich to have to pay anything out of their pockets. And, depending on the blog you go to, the language to describe generic conservatives (this time I'm including Republicans) is a whole lot worse.

    Well, the fact of the matter is that there will be a tradeoff. Companies, large and small will either have to raise prices and/or lay folk off in order to keep profit margins within the realm of feasibility. What's that you say? No they won't? How silly, of course they will. No politician is going to pass a law limiting profit (unless it's big oil and a windfall profits tax - and you see how well the last one worked) because they know that the funds for re-election come essentially from the pockets of investors and owners of small and large businesses. So, ask for the moon, you have as much a chance of getting that.

    But, I digress, back to the issue of the minimum wage. Many states and localities have already passed minimum wages for residents in their respective political subdivisisons, so why aren't the generic leftists prodding them for increases and the rest of the country to catch up? Simple really, again politics. To effectively "buy" votes for the Democratic Party, there needs to be a national stage for Democratic politicians to run from.

    It just won't do to have a bunch of Democrats touting a higher minimum wage as a local issue (although they are doing so for state wide initiatives). Ahhhh, but "The Democratic Party forced the administration to raise the minimum wage can be a national cry and be much more effective. But, that is still not the whole answer.

    The rest of the answer lies in the amount of the raise. If $9.00 an hour is "OK" but not where it should be, why stop at $9.00, or $10.00 or even $15.00? Let us go all the way to $30.00 an hour for all entry level jobs, regardless of skills, education, or experience. Those don't matter anyway, because a minimum wage is just that... the minimum that you can pay someone for work received. But, you know, I've never had a generic lefty say "OK, you bet, let's do it." They all say something along the lines of "Don't be ridiculous." But, I'm not being ridiculous! If that, or some other figure exceeding a figure of say $18.00 an hour is what it takes to reach the "livable wage" criteria, why heck, lets do it.

    If we did however, while the Democrats could claim victory for that election's pandering, it wouldn't hold up over the long term. No, not even close, in fact the resulting economic displacement and chaos would be horrendous. You see, the Democratic party really doesn't give a damn my dear, about the "little guy" they only want policies that insure his vote. Look at all the "grand coalition" of special interest groups called the Democratic Party and where they are today. The Democrats ruled congress and the senate from 1954 through 1994, with a single exception of the U.S. Senate on the coattails of Ronald Reagan's landslide, and that only lasted a couple of years. Are those groups substantially any better off now than they were then? Blacks? The Poor? The Hungry? The Homeless? Labor? Or, as it seems to me the Dems are running on the same issues that they have always run on? Except of course when a Democrat is in the White House. Whole different ballgame then friends.

    So, why not raise the minimum wage all the way at one time? Because they want to use that issue again, and again, and again. $7.00 an hour now, in a couple of years, another $0.75 then another a dozen years after that. Each time decrying the lack of a livable wage. Yeppers dearly beloved readers, a platform they can run on forever, and never be held accountable for. No wonder the horses haven't been to the smithy since '33, same old tired platform, same old tired policy.

    Thoughtful comments from generic lefties requested. No vitriol please or I'll take your comment down.

    More on the Minimum Wage and other egregious fibs from my good friend Donald Luskin on my blogroll, who writes "The Conspiracy To Keep You Poor And Stupid." By the Bye, if Luskin isn't on your favorites list, he ought to be.

    Posted by GM Roper at 07:08 AM | Comments (14) | TrackBack (0)

    July 04, 2006

    Happy Independence Day

    Have a safe and happy Independence Day.

    Take time to give thanks for our rights,

    given to us by God and preserved and honored by our nation.

    Posted by Woody M. at 11:00 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

    July 02, 2006

    Happy Birth Day USA!

    July 4th... Hotdogs, picnics, parades, fireworks, flags. And a memory of what it took for us to celebrate the 230th birthday of this glorious day. It took Soldiers, Sailors, Marines, Coastguardsmen, Merchant Marines, Airmen, Railroad men, Teachers, and yes, even a few traitors; some to work for us, some like Benedict Arnold to work against us, but all involved in the making of the fabric that is the United States. For those who gave their lives for freedom, for those that worked tirelessly to build a country, to educate it's citizens, for those who took off knowing not where they were going, but determined to make a better life for themselves and for their families, I send a word of thanks. I thank the people that first establish the Articles of Confederation and then, realizing that we needed a more solid framework built the constitution and then immediately amended it to provide our Bill of Rights. I thank those who in the early days of our country decided that millions for defense but not a cent for tribute was the way to go. I'm grateful even for the British invasion during the War of 1812 because it showed that our nation could stand against the most powerful nation in the then known world.

    I'm grateful for the Confederacy, who in trying to secede proved that we could stand against ourselves, correct the mighty wrongs and still be preserved as a Union. I'm grateful for those in the Union Army who often enlisted knowing that they would be fighting their own family members, but who believed that a Union of free men and women was more important.

    I'm thankful for my Grandfather and Father who spent their lives as Soldiers so that I could be free, I'm grateful for my Grandfather who for over 60 years preached the word of Almighty God and who instilled in me a belief that my immortal soul was well worth my care and concern. I'm grateful for my child, my wife and even my two psychotic cats.

    I'm grateful for Al Gore who invented the internet so that I could be a blogger and I'm most grateful for you, my readers and my friends who have supported me in this blog, and in my fight against cancer.

    I'm also grateful to all my blogging friends for all the friendship, support and care that they have all provided me when I was down, when the few times I wanted to quit and reached out and they kept me going.

    Most of All, I'm grateful that through no action of my own, I was born a citizen of the United States of America and that I am an active participant in this democracy. God Bless America!

    Posted by GM Roper at 01:18 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0)

    May 05, 2006

    Cinco de Mayo - New American Holiday

    Well, we do have some things in common with Mexico and owe thanks to them for their past help. I don't think that the Mexican victory over France saved the U.S., but Mexicans have been our friends and allies. Differences between friends can be worked out.

    Cinco History

    The 5th of May is not Mexican Independence Day, but it should be! And Cinco de Mayo is not an American holiday, but it should be.

    (Read the body of the article for details.)

    Mexicans, you see, never forget who their friends are, and neither do Americans. That's why Cinco de Mayo is such a party -- A party that celebrates freedom and liberty. There are two ideals which Mexicans and Americans have fought shoulder to shoulder to protect, ever since the 5th of May, 1862. VIVA! el CINCO DE MAYO!!

    Today, let's forget about immigration and, as individuals, celebrate this day of independence--a shared belief in liberty--with our friends from Mexico.

    Posted by Woody M. at 10:00 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

    May 03, 2006

    South America Going South

    Are people in South America going nuts? Look at the leaders that they pick. This is who the left supports. I don't want to hear one word from them about President Bush.

    Three Amigos: Evo, Hugo and Fidel

    Unfortunately, it looks like Mr. Morales' presidency (in Bolivia) has said "adios" to common sense. He is beginning to pick fights with moderate neighbors, to push away Brazil, to alienate investors, to inundate his country with "social workers" and advisors from Cuba and Venezuela, to reopen old wounds in the separatist region of Santa Cruz, and to undermine the independent electoral system. This week he nationalized the country's oil and gas industry.
    Posted by Woody M. at 12:01 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

    April 19, 2006

    Illegal Immigration - One Problem, Two Solutions

    Mexico has illegal immigration from Central America. The state of Georgia has illegal immigration from Mexico. Mexico has methods to handle their illegal immigrants, and Georgia has a new act to handle its illegals. How are they different and what are the reactions to each?

    Now, you would think that Mexico would set the standard on how to humanely treat "undocumented" workers. (I can tell that you're already getting ahead of me.) Well, you might be wrong if you did. Read the following articles from today to see two solutions to one problem.

    Georgia's Solution and Mexico's Reaction:

    Mexico blasts Georgia illegals law
    By Jeremy Schwartz
    The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
    Published on: 04/19/06

    MEXICO CITY — The Mexican government blasted Georgia's new illegal immigration law Tuesday, calling it a half-measure that discriminates against Mexicans.

    The Georgia bill, signed into law Monday by Gov. Sonny Perdue, requires verification of the legal status of those seeking certain taxpayer-funded services. The law also prevents employers from claiming the wages of illegal workers as a state tax deduction.

    Perdue spokesman Dan McLagan dismissed the Mexican government's characterization of the bill, Senate Bill 529, as a discriminatory measure. "This is saying that people should come in the front door, not the back door, and that the laws of our country and our state need to be obeyed.

    Sen. Chip Rogers (R-Woodstock), the sponsor of SB 529, fired back at the Mexican government. "I would suggest the government of Mexico stop concerning themselves with what we do in Georgia and instead worry about their own corrupt government, which has caused millions of their own citizens to leave their home country. A foreign government has no place in making Georgia law," Rogers said.

    Polls show about 80 percent of Georgians want their elected leaders to confront the issue of illegal immigration.

    "The news has everybody concerned," said Ana Cristina Castillo Petersen, an international relations expert in Mexico City. "It's having an impact on how [Mexicans] believe immigrants are perceived — as a threat to cultural values, as a cost to the state."

    Fox, a former executive for Atlanta-based Coca-Cola Co. in Mexico, has pushed hard but unsuccessfully over the last five years for immigration measures that would allow more Mexicans to work legally in the United States.

    Jorge Bustamante, a special rapporteur to the United Nations on the human rights outlook of migrant workers and one of Mexico's leading experts on the topic, called the complaints by Fox's government "absolutely irrelevant" because Mexico has so far failed to influence immigration policy in the United States.

    © 2006 The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

    Okay. Do you have that picture? Now, let's see if Mexico handles the problem in the same way that they demand of Georgia. What's your guess?

    Mexico's Solution and Migrants' Reactions:

    Few Protections for Migrants to Mexico
    By Mark Stevenson
    Associated Press Writer
    Apr 19, 2006

    TULTITLAN, Mexico (AP) -- Considered felons by the government, these migrants fear detention, rape and robbery. Police and soldiers hunt them down at railroads, bus stations and fleabag hotels. Sometimes they are deported; more often officers simply take their money.

    While migrants in the United States have held huge demonstrations in recent weeks, the hundreds of thousands of undocumented Central Americans in Mexico suffer mostly in silence.

    The level of brutality Central American migrants face in Mexico was apparent Monday, when police conducting a raid for undocumented migrants near a rail yard outside Mexico City shot to death a local man, apparently because his dark skin and work clothes made officers think he was a migrant.

    Undocumented Central American migrants complain much more about how they are treated by Mexican officials than about authorities on the U.S. side of the border, where migrants may resent being caught but often praise the professionalism of the agents scouring the desert for their trail.

    "If you're carrying any money, they take it from you - federal, state, local police, all of them," said Carlos Lopez, a 28-year-old farmhand from Guatemala.... "The soldiers were there as soon as we crossed the river," he said. "They said, 'You can't cross ... unless you leave something for us.'"

    Jose Ramos, 18, of El Salvador, said the extortion occurs at every stop in Mexico, until migrants are left penniless and begging for food. "If you're on a bus, they pull you off and search your pockets and if you have any money, they keep it and say, 'Get out of here,'" Ramos said.

    Maria Elena Gonzalez, who lives near the tracks, said female migrants often complain about abusive police. "They force them to strip, supposedly to search them, but the purpose is to sexually abuse them," she said. Others said they had seen migrants beaten to death by police, their bodies left near the railway tracks to make it look as if they had fallen from a train.

    The Mexican government acknowledges that many federal, state and local officials are on the take from the people-smugglers who move hundreds of thousands of Central Americans north, and that migrants are particularly vulnerable to abuse by corrupt police.

    The National Human Rights Commission, a government-funded agency, documented the abuses south of the U.S. border in a December report. "One of the saddest national failings on immigration issues is the contradiction in demanding that the North respect migrants' rights, which we are not capable of guaranteeing in the South," commission president Jose Luis Soberanes said.

    And while Mexicans denounce the criminalization of their citizens living without papers in the United States, Mexican law classifies undocumented immigration as a felony punishable by up to two years in prison, although deportation is more common.

    The number of undocumented migrants detained in Mexico almost doubled from 138,061 in 2002 to 240,269 last year. Forty-two percent were Guatemalan, 33 percent Honduran and most of the rest Salvadoran.

    Like the United States, Mexico is becoming reliant on immigrant labor. Last year, then-director of Mexico's immigration agency, Magdalena Carral, said an increasing number of Central Americans were staying in Mexico, rather than just passing through on their way to the U.S.

    She said sectors of the Mexican economy facing labor shortages often use undocumented workers because the legal process for work visas is inefficient.

    © 2006 The Associated Press

    Maybe Mexico could use a Minutemen Patrol. But, I would put it on the other side of its border--to protect the immigrants rather than to protect Mexico. Anyway, like I tell the wackos on the left and I would tell the Mexican government, don't make demands from me that you aren't willing to put on yourself.

    It's been serveral days since the immigration act was signed by the Georgia governor, and the state's economy has not collapsed--nor will it. In fact, some of the unemployed legal citizens might be able to get jobs.

    It's a crazy idea to protect your nation's borders, but let's see how it works. If it fails, we can always consider handling it Mexico's way.

    Posted by Woody M. at 04:40 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

    March 19, 2006

    Gulag Nation - Black Spring

    Foul deeds will rise, though all the earth o'erwhelm it, to men's eyes.
    Marc Cooper rightly takes the left to task for the lack of blogging about the 3rd anniversary of the arrest and subsequent trial/imprisonment of 75 persons in Cuba. Arrested as anti-revolutionaries for handing out library books. Library books for Pete's Sake!

    More impotantly, this issue has also escaped much of the MSM and the right blogs as well. Everybody is pointing to the 3rd anniversary of the invasion of Iraq. But anti-war demonstrations have turned out to be more anti-American and/or Anti-Brittish/Australian demonstrations or just plain ole I hate Bushychimpmchitler. But this post is not about Iraq, it is about our friend Fidel in Cuba.

    The Crime:

    Between March 18-20, 2003, authorities rounded up about 100 dissidents and independent journalists.

    Of those, 75 were quickly tried and sentenced to between six and 28 years in prison, including Cuba's best-known female dissident, economist Martha Beatriz Roque. Of those, 15 were gradually freed between April 2004 and December 2005.

    Black spring is reported in a few blogs, newspapers, but not much else. And this is a shame, because it highlights the utter hypocracy of both the Castro regime in it's cry against the United States, and our supposed stand for human rigthts.

    What do I mean by this? Simple. If we are to be the "City Shining On The Hill" then we also must condem the totalitarian forces that beset the peoples of the world. I'm probably going to be declared a heretic by my fellow conservatives, but I think that the way to bring Castro and his band of thugs down is to increase contact and trade with Cuba. Russia wasn't changed by the ability of the Communist government to control it's people, Russia was changed by the inability to keep up with the freedoms of the west. Likewise, the Cuban people if given free access to freedom as proposed by free trade, access to real information as opposed to contrived and controlled information of the Cuban government will opt for more freedom not less. In this, our refusal to deal with the people of Cuba has been a total failure. Cuba needs access to the benefits of a free society, and that and that alone will change the Cuban government.

    Others reporting on the third anniversary of the Castro crackdown include: Wall Street Cafe, Uncommon Sense, Blog for Cuba, Marathon Pundit, Cuba Net and Babalu Blog.

    Posted by GM Roper at 05:51 AM | Comments (8) | TrackBack (0)

    February 20, 2006

    Teddy R's Wisdom!

    Theodore Roosevelt:

    There are occasional crimes committed on so vast a scale and of such peculiar horror as to make us doubt whether it is not our manifest duty to endeavor at least to show our disapproval of the deed and our sympathy with those who have suffered by it. The cases must be extreme in which such a course is justifiable...What form the action shall take must depend upon the circumstances of the case; that is, upon the degree of the atrocity and upon our power to remedy it."

    H/T: Alan Dowd at NRO via my good friend Timothy Birdnow

    Posted by GM Roper at 09:34 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0)

    January 24, 2006

    That Ragged Old Flag

    I walked through a county courthouse square
    On a park bench, an old man was sittin' there.
    I said, "Your old court house is kinda run down",
    He said, "Naw, it'll do for our little town".
    I said, "Your old flag pole is leaned a little bit,
    And that's a ragged old flag you got hangin' on it".
    He said, "Have a seat", and I sat down,
    "Is this the first time you've been to our little town"
    I said, "I think it is"
    He said "I don't like to brag, but we're kinda proud of
    That Ragged Old Flag

    "You see, we got a little hole in that flag there,
    When Washington took it across the Delaware.
    and It got powder burned the night Francis Scott Key
    sat watching it, writing "Say Can You See"
    It got a rip in New Orleans,
    with Packingham & Jackson tugging at its seams.
    and It almost fell at the Alamo beside the Texas flag,
    But she waved on though.
    She got cut with a sword at Chancellorsville,
    And she got cut again at Shiloh Hill.
    There was Robert E. Lee and Beauregard and Bragg,
    And the south wind blew hard on
    That Ragged Old Flag

    "On Flanders Field in World War I,
    She got a big hole from a Bertha Gun,
    She turned blood red in World War II
    She hung limp, and low, a time or two,
    She was in Korea, Vietnam,
    She went where she was sent by her Uncle Sam.
    She waved from our ships upon the briny foam
    and now they've about quit wavin' back here at home
    in her own good land here She's been abused,
    She's been burned, dishonored, denied an' refused,
    And the government for which she stands
    Has been scandalized throughout the land.
    And she's getting thread bare, and she's wearin' thin,
    But she's in good shape, for the shape she's in.
    Cause she's been through the fire before
    and I believe she can take a whole lot more.

    "So we raise her up every morning
    And we bring her down slow every night,
    We don't let her touch the ground,
    And we fold her up right.
    On second thought
    I *do* like to brag
    Cause I'm mighty proud of
    That Ragged Old Flag"
    --Johnny Cash

    Posted by GM Roper at 09:46 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack (1)

    January 22, 2006

    Souter to be Homeless?

    In a 5-4 decision, the United States Supreme Court decided that city's could "take" private property to give to other private individuals if by doing so it improved the tax base. Oh, there were other words tossed about but this is what it boils down to:

    In June, Souter joined the 5-4 majority upholding the right of governments to appropriate private property for commercial development.
    My friend Quick Rob notes, as does the previously cited source that Neal Kurk, a Republican representing Souter's home town of Weare, New Hampshire doesn't think this is a good idea in as much as it might be construed as trying to "intimidate" a federal judge.

    Well, Mr. Kurk, first of all, David Souter may be a Supreme Court Justice, but he is still an American and American's have to follow the law of the land. As QR said:

    After all, the Justices are not above the law. I don’t know how Neal Kurk justifies the idea of a Supreme court Justice not being subjected to the consequences of his decisions.

    But, I have a solution. Judge, sell me your house for a price I can afford. That will take the pressure off of you and decrease the liklihood that the Town will "take" your homestead. Then, when the outcry has settled, I'll sell it back to you for the same price. No, really, I will. I'll look out for your interests to the exact same degree that you looked out for the interests of America's property owners. No problem!

    Posted by GM Roper at 05:46 PM | Comments (3)

    October 04, 2005

    Take the Citizenship Test - Are You a Model Citizen?

    I'm not one to turn down taking a quiz, and I was anxious to take a sample U.S. Citizenship Test to prove to myself that I'm a good citizen--as least as far as knowing about our country including our laws and our history. I took multiple tests until I answered all the questions correctly--on the third try. However, things fell apart when I expanded the exercise and took the test to find out if I was a good global citizen.

    Here is my first test.

    You Passed the US Citizenship Test

    Congratulations - you got 9 out of 10 correct!

    Could You Pass the US Citizenship Test?

    They didn't tell me what I missed, so I moved on to another one with higher hopes. Here is my second try using a different test but with the same result.

    U.S. Citizenship Test: Could You Pass?
    Way to Go! You got 10/11 correct.

    Not being a quitter, I took an even different test and passed with 100% correct. As it states, I am a model citizen!

    PBS Citizenship Test
    Your Score: 10 out of 10 — Congratulations! You're a model citizen.

    See! "I am the very model of a modern major-citizen!"

    Getting confident, I took the next step and took a quiz to find if I was a model global citizen, too! How could I miss? I'm a model citizen for the greatest country on Earth, so that makes me a shoe-in for the world. But, it didn't go so well.

    Global Citizenship Quiz
    Quiz Completed: You answered 3 questions correctly out of 10.

    What! Well, what I found was that I didn't understand the formula for answering questions. That's not fair, because I didn't know that to be a model global citizen that I had to answer questions in a way so as to put down the U.S., and that answers for world problems were the highest numbers--like the number of people afflicted with disease or the dollars spent on weapons instead of peace. I could have gotten those had I subscribed to and could read French newspapers. I'm not going to embarrass myself and tell you how I did on the "Peace Quiz."

    Anyway, you may want to try one of the quizzes and find out if you're a model U.S. citizen, like me. (As a hint, before you start, be sure that you know the year the Constitution was adopted.) If you are curious or you've just slipped past the border patrol and want to become a U.S. citizen, here's the official government site for a self-test.

    Now, I'm going to try the Environmental Quiz. I hope they have something on global warming, because I know everything about that from two posts earlier. I'm sure to be a Model Environmentalist!

    Posted by GM Roper at 12:10 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack (0)

    September 24, 2005

    Visions of Hell

    If Dante could see earth from a satellite in his mind's eye as he penned "The Inferno" maybe this is something similar to what he saw. Prayers out to everyone in Rita's path and those catching the sides. latest_wv.jpg

    Info Theory

    Posted by GM Roper at 09:37 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

    September 15, 2005

    Red Skelton Audio on Pledge and "Under God" Addition

    Many of you remember Red Skelton, a popular comedian, clown, actor, and television host. On a show in 1969, he explained the meaning of every word in our "Pledge of Allegiance." His presentation has touched many and has been read into the Congressional Record and received awards. Red Skelton ends the lesson by discussing the special meaning of "under God" in the pledge. This ties in with G.M.'s entry below and is worth taking the time to hear.

    This site has the narrative and automatically starts playing his talk. I wouldn't want you to miss this and I want to remind others to hear it again.

    Here's how it starts:

    I remember this one teacher. To me, he was the greatest teacher, a real sage of my time. He had such wisdom. We were all reciting the Pledge Of Allegiance and he walked over. Mr. Lasswell was his name... He said: 'I've been listening to you boys and girls recite the Pledge Of Allegiance all semester and it seems as though it is becoming monotonous to you. If I may, may I recite it and try to explain to you the meaning of each word?'

    ...and, here's how it ends:

    I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic, for which it stands; one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

    Since I was a small boy, two states have been added to our country, and two words have been added to the Pledge of Allegiance: Under God. Wouldn't it be a pity if someone said that is a prayer, and that would be eliminated from schools, too?

    To do this justice, be sure to listen to the entire presentation. It's short but effective. Maybe the pledge has become routine with us, too, as it did the boys and girls in the class. It's good to think about every word in the pledge and, at this time, especially the two words "under God."

    Posted by GM Roper at 09:50 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (1)

    September 01, 2005

    Katrina Relief

    I've been scrolling through the blogosphere to come up with a couple of links to provide for my readers that want to help with the relief effort. One that comes up consistently, but one highly recommended by people that I respect highly is Operation USA. This is an agency founded in 1979 specifically for disaster relief and they are good at what they do. Rosedog, who comments regularly at Marc Cooper's blog entry knows the founder personally and states that the reason they have an extremely low administration cost to relief efforts is:

    The way Op USA works is that, rather than buying relief supplies, with few exceptions they get all their supplies donated then use their own donated cash to get the supplies to where they need to go. Most aid organizations, instead, buy their relief supplies on the open market at enormous cost and a big markup. International aid, in particular, is big business. It's slightly more complicated than what I'm explaining, but not only does Op USA use a comparatively tiny staff to accomplish a great deal, but all their collected funds are greatly maximized by the nature of their relief supply donation model.
    I will be donating to them, as well as some to the American Red Cross and to the Salvation Army. If you, beloved readers, choose to donate to them, or to any one for that matter, note that the funds are specifically for Katrina Relief. If you donate to lesser known charities, or if you want to check out any charity go to the BBB's Wise Giving Site, Give.org.

    If you have some job skills that you want to donate and that you think can be use in disaster relief, call the Red Cross, The Salvation Army or FEMA. You may need to work through a bureaucracy but if you are persistent, you might find another way to help.

    You can also find some great links for disaster relief at Little Green Footballs, Glen Reynolds, the FEMA website.

    Techorati tags: Flood Aid, Hurricane Katrina

    Update: _H_ at the Terrorism News blog recommends a housing entry. It is from a lefty site, but if you have housing available, please click on Housing Available.

    Posted by GM Roper at 12:08 AM | Comments (18) | TrackBack (0)

    August 31, 2005

    "Fear and Looting in Biloxi"

    In the wake of Hurricane Katrina's destruction, it is enraging to watch looters break into stores and homes, making the situation even worse for victims of the storm. At this time, the nation, in fact the world, should be working together to help--setting aside politics and greed. Should be, but....

    You've seen the images...cities flooded, homes and buildings destroyed, hundreds dead. Yet, looters make it worse and do their deeds without guilt and with contrived justification. Consider this statement by one observer: "To be honest with you, people who are oppressed all their lives, man, it's an opportunity to get back at society." The news has shown people breaking down doors of stores spared by the storm just to steal. I watched a mother taking her three kids in tow as she took what didn't belong to her. Families are being threatened by mobs and fear leaving their homes. What is wrong with these looters, and what kind of citizens will their children become? How do you handle this? It's my opinion that society hasn't failed them, but that they have failed society.

    On the issue of providing assistance, I was hoping for a flow of goodwill and aid from other nations. After all, they criticized the level of U.S. aid for tsunami victims, just as we were beginning the process to give billions in aid through government and private donations. So, such help for natural disasters must be important to our critics. But, I may have missed something. It sounds eerily quiet from the rest of the world. Well, I take that back. You may have seen the reaction of German papers. Apparently, according to one German government official, President Bush is to blame as hurricanes are caused by global warming that he ignores. Sad. Well, history shows that the U.S. is the most generous nation in the world when other nations have disasters. Why is it too much to expect for them to be there for us?

    But, similar reactions can be found within our own nation. One blogger felt that the best contribution to be made was to lampoon "cracker governors" who didn't know how to conduct an evacuation. Thanks. That really helps a lot now. But, what about Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. who also said that the hurricane resulted from global warming, caused by the U.S. rejection of the Kyoto Treaty, which was opposed by Mississippi's Governor in his “eco-extremism" memo? Kennedy means that the Governor brought this on his own state. Former Clinton advisor, Sidney Blumenthal, offered that "the federal funding for the flood control project essentially dried up as it was drained into the Iraq war." It may just be my opinion, but isn't helping people and rebuilding the cities more important than petty politics? Apparently not to some.

    I'm not completely disappointed in the reaction of many, though. This country is starting to respond and I hope that other nations step up the pace to offer assistance. This will end up being the most costly natural disaster in our nation's history, but many crumbling lives can be saved. Individuals can make a difference. Businesses can help. If you're interested, contributions to the disaster relief fund can be made through various charities, but be sure that you designate your contribution to Hurricane Katrina so that your money doesn't end up in a general fund. This Red Cross chapter provides an easy site to make and designate your contribution.

    Don't wait. Do it now. It's important, and this long process is just beginning.

    Posted by GM Roper at 08:00 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

    August 09, 2005

    Republicans Resurgent

    This is a bit of a difficult puzzle, but the time spent will be well worth the wait I promise!

    Posted by GM Roper at 01:00 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

    August 03, 2005

    On The Road Again

    This Saturday, my brother-in-law is getting married. Steve Gregory is in his 50's and is a delightful man, and a really good fellow. Steve was my first wife's brother and when she passed away in 1996, he was a rock. Much later, when I decided to re-marry, I asked Steve to be my Best Man, and too my absolute delight, he said he would be proud to be.

    Steve sent me an E-mail a couple of month's ago and said he was also getting re-married this August, would I be HIS Best Man? Folks, nothing on this earth could make me prouder than to return the favor for this terrific person.

    By the time you read this, my daughter and I will have already left on the long drive from deep south Texas to the vicinity of Tinker Air Force Base, Oklahoma. I'll be back late Sunday night, exhausted but happy for Steve. In the meantime, I've prepared a number of posts that Woody will be putting up for me and adding his own inimical style to his own posts. So, keep coming back, and keep commenting.

    Ya'll take care now, ya he'ah?

    Posted by GM Roper at 11:50 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

    July 11, 2005

    Canada Applies French Influence -- Insults U.S. Workers

    A Canadian auto executive said that a car plant will be constructed in Canada because U.S. workers are stupid. Them's fight'n words where I come from. Let's see if this guy knows what he's talking about or if this is just more phony Canadian snobbery to the U.S.

    Here's the story. Toyota announced that they would build a new plant in Woodstock, Ontario. Why there rather than the Southeastern U.S., which has seen an explosion of new car plants? According to Gerry Fedchun, president of the Toronto based Automotive Parts Manufacturers' Association, "The educational level and the skill level of the people down there is so much lower than it is in Ontario." In the report by the CBC, Fedchun added (maybe sneered) that workers in Alabama and Mississippi are often illiterate. Well, Monsieur Fedchun may also think that people in Alabama and Mississippi don't wear shoes, either.

    Let's look at some figures. Canadian taxpayers are giving $125 million in location incentives. Canadian taxpayers are providing $5 per hour in health care benefits, which translates to $13 million with that size employment, which is over $100 million in an eight year period. Then, the Canadian taxpayers are on the hook for $275 million in related and supporting industries for Toyota. That totals $ 1/2 Billion that they gave away to attract the plant! Now, who really are the stupid ones?

    So, you still think that it was their brains rather than their money that got the plant? According to this recent survey, "...42 per cent of Canadians have low literacy (scoring either Level 1, the lowest level where a person is, for example, unable to read a medicine label; or Level 2, where only the simplest of messages are comprehended and there are limitations on learning new skills.)" and at one time Canadian managers concluded, "The estimated annual cost of illiteracy to Canadian business is $1.6 billion for industrial accidents alone. This does not include the cost of illiteracy from lost productivity in other areas."

    These smart Canadians are going to learn that there are no poetry and cappuccino breaks at a car plant. You use your muscles and have to sweat. The fact is that auto plants locate where labor is cheap, incentives high, and lifestyles for management and their families are good. If a new plant recruits factory workers from the bottom of the labor pool, they may get someone who can physically do the job even though they didn't graduate from college. They would find this whether outside of Tuscaloosa, Alabama or Woodstock, Ontario. I don't think that southern auto manufacturers have any second thoughts about their location decisions. Mercedes and BMW are just as smart as those guys from Toyota.

    Southern workers, in fact all U.S. workers, are the best. People in the U.S. work harder and longer than our friends in the cold north and other parts of the world. And, surprise, they can read, too! The states have compulsory education, and I don't think that even the public schools turn out illiterates.

    So Canada, just don't tell us that you got a car plant because southern workers are stupid compared to you. We're not that dumb.

    But, for you, Toyota--have fun doubling your paperwork in both English and French, dealing with the biggest government bureaucracy that you'll ever see, and having to melt the ice off of car parts before you can install them.

    And, Canadians, if you want the U.S. military to continue to provide your defense and fight your battles that you can't or won't do, please don't be offended if we use some stupid, shoeless Southern hicks to do the job.

    UPDATE of July 15, 2005: When the disparaging comments about our auto workers were published, I wrote the Canadian auto association, which is led by the executive making the remarks, and "The Birmingham News," which is the major newspaper in the area of most of the new car plants in the South. Today, "The Birmingham News" wrote me and provided this reponse from Mr. Fedchun of the association. You may follow the Continuation Link to the letter and apology from Mr. Fedchun. It is being placed here for those might come to this entry from a search or link, and they should have both sides to be fair and to see the resolution to this point. Additional information may also be added if it becomes available.

    Continue reading "Canada Applies French Influence -- Insults U.S. Workers"
    Posted by GM Roper at 06:00 PM | Comments (11) | TrackBack (0)

    July 06, 2005

    America wishes President Happy Birthday! (Well, most of America.)

    Today, July 6th, is the birthday of President George W. Bush, who was born in 1946. Please join us in wishing the President a Happy Birthday and many more! You can express your birthday greetings to the President in the comments and by going to the White House Web Mail. If you are a Democrat or just curious, please visit this site and see the graciousness of the left in its birthday wishes. Anyway, at least we still have class. Happy Birthday, Mr. President!

    Posted by GM Roper at 02:50 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

    July 04, 2005

    A Tribute To America, From Americans

    "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. --That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed..."
    ...............The Declaration of Independence, Philadelphia, Penn., July 4, 1776

    "We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America."
    ...............The Preamble To The Constitution of The United States of America

    "I know not what course others may take, but as for me, Give me
    Liberty; or Give Me Death!"
    ...............Patrick Henry, March 23, 1775.

    "The Preservation of the sacred fire of Liberty, and the destiny of the republican mode of government, are justly considered as deeply, perhaps as finally staked on the experiment entrusted to the hands of the American People."
    ...............George Washington "The First Inaugral Address" April 30, 1789

    "It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth."
    ...............Abraham Lincoln, Gettysburg, Pa, November 19, 1863

    Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and the success of liberty.
    ...............John Kennedy, January 20, 1961

    "Never tiring, never yielding, never finishing, we renew that purpose today, to make our country more just and generous, to affirm the dignity of our lives and every life. This work continues. This story goes on. And an angel still rides in the whirlwind and directs this storm."
    ...............George Bush, January 20, 2001

    America the Beautiful

    O beautiful for spacious skies,
    For amber waves of grain,
    For purple mountain majesties
    Above the fruited plain!
    America! America!
    God shed his grace on thee
    And crown thy good with brotherhood
    From sea to shining sea!

    O beautiful for pilgrim feet
    Whose stern impassioned stress
    A thoroughfare for freedom beat
    Across the wilderness!
    America! America!
    God mend thine every flaw,
    Confirm thy soul in self-control,
    Thy liberty in law!

    O beautiful for heroes proved
    In liberating strife.
    Who more than self the country loved
    And mercy more than life!
    America! America!
    May God thy gold refine
    Till all success be nobleness
    And every gain divine!

    O beautiful for patriot dream
    That sees beyond the years
    Thine alabaster cities gleam
    Undimmed by human tears!
    America! America!
    God shed his grace on thee
    And crown thy good with brotherhood
    From sea to shining sea!

    O beautiful for halcyon skies,
    For amber waves of grain,
    For purple mountain majesties
    Above the enameled plain!
    America! America!
    God shed his grace on thee
    Till souls wax fair as earth and air
    And music-hearted sea!

    O beautiful for pilgrims feet,
    Whose stem impassioned stress
    A thoroughfare for freedom beat
    Across the wilderness!
    America! America!
    God shed his grace on thee
    Till paths be wrought through
    wilds of thought
    By pilgrim foot and knee!

    O beautiful for glory-tale
    Of liberating strife
    When once and twice,
    for man's avail
    Men lavished precious life!
    America! America!
    God shed his grace on thee
    Till selfish gain no longer stain
    The banner of the free!

    O beautiful for patriot dream
    That sees beyond the years
    Thine alabaster cities gleam
    Undimmed by human tears!
    America! America!
    God shed his grace on thee
    Till nobler men keep once again
    Thy whiter jubilee!

    Words by Katharine Lee Bates

    The Star Spangled Banner

    Oh, say, can you see, by the dawn's early light,
    What so proudly we hail'd at the twilight's last gleaming?
    Whose broad stripes and bright stars, thro' the perilous fight,
    O'er the ramparts we watch'd, were so gallantly streaming?
    And the rockets' red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
    Gave proof thro' the night that our flag was still there.
    O say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave
    O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave?
    On the shore dimly seen thro' the mists of the deep,
    Where the foe's haughty host in dread silence reposes,
    What is that which the breeze, o'er the towering steep,
    As it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses?
    Now it catches the gleam of the morning's first beam,
    In full glory reflected, now shines on the stream:
    'Tis the star-spangled banner: O, long may it wave
    O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!
    And where is that band who so vauntingly swore
    That the havoc of war and the battle's confusion
    A home and a country should leave us no more?
    Their blood has wash'd out their foul footsteps' pollution.
    No refuge could save the hireling and slave
    From the terror of flight or the gloom of the grave:
    And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
    O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave.
    O, thus be it ever when freemen shall stand,
    Between their lov'd homes and the war's desolation;
    Blest with vict'ry and peace, may the heav'n-rescued land
    Praise the Pow'r that hath made and preserv'd us as a nation!
    Then conquer we must, when our cause is just,
    And this be our motto: "In God is our trust"
    And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
    O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

    -- Francis Scott Key

    The Battle Hymn of the Repulic

    Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord;
    He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored;
    He hath loosed the fateful lightning of his terrible swift sword:
    His truth is marching on.

    I have seen him in the watch-fires of a hundred circling camps;
    They have builded him an altar in the evening dews and damps;
    I can read his righteous sentence by the dim and flaring lamps;
    His day is marching on.

    I have read a fiery gospel, writ in burnished rows of steel:
    "As ye deal with my contemners, so with you my grace shall deal;
    Let the Hero, born of woman, crush the serpent with his heel,
    Since God is marching on."

    He has sounded forth the trumpet that shall never call retreat;
    He is sifting out the hearts of men before his judgment-seat;
    Oh, be swift, my soul, to answer him! be jubilant, my feet!
    Our God is marching on.

    In the beauty of the lilies Christ was born across the sea,
    With a glory in his bosom that transfigures you and me:
    As he died to make men holy, let us die to make men free,
    While God is marching on.

    -- Julia Ward Howe

    Posted by GM Roper at 10:13 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

    July 03, 2005

    Happy 4th of July Everyone....Happy Birthday America


    Special Thanks to Pat Santy, M.D. and while you're at it, go read the Declaration of Independence that she put up for us all.

    God Bless this Great Land.

    Posted by GM Roper at 06:01 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack (1)

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