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Archive for November, 2012

Joy!

“To be in service to another, to contribute to the world around us, to make a difference in the life of another without expecting anything in return is to know true joy!”

Martha Borst

 The following is a story about unconditional giving, love, joy and freedom. It will likely bring tears to your eyes . . . If 8 minutes of your time is worth having your spirits renewed and life uplifted, then click on this link:

JOY!

 

“Since you get more joy out of giving joy to others, you should put a good deal of thought into the happiness that you are able to give.”
Eleanor Roosevelt

Thank you to my good friend BJ Haynes for sending this to me

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What is an American?

 

Americans are not a perfect people, but we are called to a perfect mission.

Andrew Jackson

 

What is an American?

This past election was damaging and hurtful to us all. It was filled with venomous rhetoric and claims from people that unless you thought like they did, somehow you were not a “Real” American. None of us is perfect and perhaps we have all been guilty at some time or another of disregarding and/or diminishing others who have held different thoughts than our own. But if we are to be “Real Americans” standing for the foundational values of our country . . . if we are to survive as the greatest social experiment of all time, we must regroup, rise up and remember who we are as a people and as a nation. We must embrace and be thankful for the richness of our melting pot with its many diverse thoughts, ideas, ethnicities, lifestyles and cultures. Perhaps it’s time for us all to stop, take a deep breath, and reflect on what it actually means to be a “Real” American. I think it’s time to once again review the following article, which was written by Peter Ferrara, Professor of Law, George Mason University. It was first published in the National Review, Sept 25, 2001 right after 9/11.

“You probably missed this in the rush of news, but there was actually a report that someone in Pakistan had published in a newspaper, an offer of a reward to anyone who killed an American, any American.

So I just thought I would write to let them know what an American is, so they would know when they found one.

An American is English, or French, or Italian, Irish, German, Spanish , Polish, Russian or Greek. An American may also be Canadian, Mexican, African, Indian, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Australian, Iranian, Asian, or Arab, or Pakistani or Afghan.

An American may also be a Comanche, Cherokee, Osage, Blackfoot, Navaho, Apache, Seminole or one of the many other tribes known as Native Americans.

An American is Christian, or he could be Jewish, or Buddhist, or Muslim. In fact, there are more Muslims in America than in Afghanistan. The only difference is in America, they are free to worship as each of them chooses.

An American is also free to believe in no religion. For that, he will answer only to God, not to the government, or to armed thugs claiming to speak for the government and for God.

 An American is from the most prosperous land in the history of the world. The root of that prosperity can be found in the Declaration of Independence, which recognizes the God given right of each person to the pursuit of happiness.

An American is generous. Americans have helped out just about every other nation in the world in their time of need. When Afghanistan was over-run by the Soviet army 20 years ago, Americans came with arms and supplies to enable the people to win back their country! As of the morning of September 11, Americans had given more than any other nation to the poor in Afghanistan…

 Americans welcome the best, but they also welcome the least. The national symbol of America, The Statue of Liberty, welcomes your tired and your poor, the wretched refuse of your teeming shores, the homeless, tempest tossed.

 These in fact, are the people who built America. Some of them were working in the Twin Towers the morning of September 11, 2001 earning a better life for their families. [It’s been told that the World Trade Center victims were from at least 30 different countries, cultures, and first languages, including those that aided and abetted the terrorists.]

 So you can try to kill an American if you must. Hitler did. So did General Tojo, and Stalin, and Mao Tse-Tung, and other blood-thirsty tyrants in the world. But, in doing so, you would just be killing yourself because Americans are not a particular people from a particular place. They are the embodiment of the human spirit of freedom. Everyone who holds to that spirit, everywhere, is an American…”

Peter Ferrara

 And I will do everything that I can as long as I am President of the United States to remind the American people that we are one nation under God, and we may call that God different names, but we remain one nation.

Barack Obama

 

Let’s hold ourselves, our President, and every member of Congress to this pledge.

 

Thank you to my good friend BJ Haynes for sharing this article

 

 

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545 People

545 People

 

Journalist Charley Reese (now retired) was part of the Orlando Sentinel’s staff for three decades from 1971-2001. He wrote the following article in 1995. The deficit is now at $16 trillion and the number of people in the U.S. is now 314 million, so to bring it up to date, increase the numbers where necessary. . .

“Politicians, as I have often said, are the only people in the world who create problems and then campaign against them.  Everything on the Republican contract is a problem created by Congress. Too much bureaucracy? Blame Congress. Too many rules?  Blame Congress. Unjust tax laws? Congress wrote them.  Out-of-control bureaucracy? Congress authorizes everything bureaucracies do. Americans dying in Third World rat holes on stupid U.N. missions? Congress allows it.

The annual deficits?  Congress votes for them. The $4 [$16] trillion-plus debt? Congress created it.

To put it into perspective, just remember that 100 percent of the power of the federal government comes from the U.S. Constitution. If it’s not in the Constitution, it’s not authorized.

Then read your Constitution. All 100 percent of the power of the federal government is invested solely in 545 individual human beings. That’s all. Of 260 [314] million Americans, only 545 of them wield 100 percent of the power of the federal government.

That’s 435 members of the U.S. House, 100 senators, one president, and nine supreme court justices. Anything involving government that is wrong is 100 percent their fault.

I exclude the vice president because constitutionally, he has no power except to preside over the Senate and to vote only in the case of a tie. I exclude the Federal Reserve because Congress created it, and all its power is power Congress delegated to it and could withdraw anytime it chooses to do so. In fact, all the power exercised by the three million or so other federal employees is power delegated from the 545.

All bureaucracies are created by Congress or by executive order of the president. All are financed and staffed by Congress. All enforce laws passed by Congress. All operate under procedures authorized by Congress. That’s why all complaints and protests should be properly directed at Congress, not at the individual agencies.

You don’t like the IRS? Go see Congress. You think the Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms agency is running amok? Go see Congress.

Congress is the originator of all government problems and is also the only remedy available. That’s why, of course, politicians go to such extraordinary lengths and employ world-class sophistry to make you think they are not responsible.

Anytime a congressman pretends to be outraged by something a federal bureaucrat does, he is in fact, engaging in one big massive con job. No federal employee can act at all except to enforce laws passed by Congress and to employ procedures authorized by Congress either explicitly or implicitly.

Partisans on both sides like to blame presidents for deficits, but all deficits are congressional deficits. The president may, by custom, recommend a budget, but it carries no legal weight. Only Congress is authorized by the Constitution to authorize and appropriate, and to levy taxes. That’s what the federal budget consists of: expenditures authorized, funds appropriated and taxes levied.

Both Democrats and Republicans mislead the public. For 40 years, Democrats had majorities and could have at any time balanced the budget if they had chosen to do so.

Republicans now have majorities and could, if they choose, pass a balanced budget this year. Every president, Democrat or Republican, could have vetoed appropriations bills that did not make up a balanced budget.  Every president could have recommended a balanced budget. None has done either.

We have annual deficits and a huge federal debt because that’s what majorities in Congress and presidents in the White House wanted. We have troops in various Third World rat holes because Congress and the president want them there.

Don’t be conned. Don’t let them escape responsibility. We simply have to sort through 260 [314] million people until we find 545 who will act responsibly.”

Charley Reese

BUT – NOT SO FAST!  Who does Congress answer to?

YOU and ME!

WE are the ones who are ultimately responsible.

I think all enlightened people agree there are some “bad apples” in Congress.

“Bad politicians are sent to Washington by good people who don’t vote.”

William E. Simon

And politicians make bad decisions because good people don’t speak up! Your vote and your voice matter.

Speak Up! 

The best way you can influence the direction of this country right now will be to contact your own members of Congress. THEY WORK FOR YOU!! YOU are their boss. They are your employees!! Tell them to start collaborating like mature adults and act constructively!

Then. . .

The last election made it very clear: the USA is made up of an ever-increasingly diverse group of people and it demonstrated that the term, “Real Americans” does not apply to one demographic. We cannot move forward into the future by clinging to old ways of thinking.

Tell your Congressman/woman that intrasigency is totally unacceptable. Tell them we must strike a balance between conviction and compromise with a common commitment to:

1) Get our economic house in order and

2) Stay out of peoples’ personal lives

Tell them to respect the vote of the American people. It’s time to put the interests of the country first.

“When we talk about The Party, we lose. When we talk about The Country, we win.”

John Huntsman

 

Wise words for us all . . .

Thank you to my good friend Kathy Woldum for sharing this article with us.

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Vote!

Nobody will ever deprive the American people of the right to vote except the American people themselves and the only way they could do this is by not voting.

Franklin D. Roosevelt

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