A Contemporary Yes, Virginia Editorial

Since nothing’s what it appears to be anymore, that journalistic integrity is barely a blip on the radar anyhow, and that sacred cows are tossed on the barbecue nowadays, here's a contemporary twist on that “Yes, Virginia” editorial. “Is there a Santa Claus?” was the title of that editorial appearing in the September 21, 1897 edition of a New York newspaper called “The Sun.” The editorial, which included the famous reply, “Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus,” has become an indelible part of popular Christmas folklore. That Fall, Dr. Philip O’Hanlon was asked by his then eight-year-old daughter, Virginia, if Santa Claus really existed.  She began to doubt he did because her friends had told her he didn't exist.  Philip suggested she...

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America: Grab The Rudder Or Drown

If you knew the course of history, would you grab the Titanic’s rudder to change her course if it meant saving the lives of those in peril?  For a legion of voters that's the proverbial thrust, a seemingly conclusive paradox, they must face come November 6th. Many on Election Day will lash themselves to that rudder for a course change they perceive is a life-and-death matter for lady liberty. Many of those in opposition would have those alterers go quietly into the night, but many will take a modifying stance to say “Nay, Nay” throughout the land. Barack Obama was a glimmer of hope for the masses just four short years ago.    I recall election night 2008 when Barack Obama stood on that podium and gave an acceptance speech before thousands...

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Put An End To Speculation On Oil

Gasoline prices continue to surge, and the increases are expected to continue.  Gasoline prices roared to as much as $6.00 a gallon in California recently, an all-time high.  The national average is about $3.79 a gallon, the highest ever.  Some say refinery and transmission problems are to blame. The situation is only compounded by a federal pollution law that requires a higher priced special blend of cleaner-burning gasoline to be used from April to October. The price of diesel fuel has also increased, adding significant costs for truckers.  An independent trucker recently claimed if fuel gets to $5 per gallon, he will probably stop driving because he’d lose money.  “With that kind of price, I won’t be able to support my family.” He...

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Thou Shalt Not Covet The Other Guy’s Stuff Movement

My wife and I like attending festivals throughout the year and we recently enjoyed the day at one.  We delight in the entertainment and marvel at the creativeness some people have. As a writer, you might say my mind is in constant motion.  I notice things others overlook and at that Festival I saw a granite monument of the Ten Commandments on the corner of the downtown square.  I won't mention what town it was because I don't want to give the ACLU, or any other like-minded organization, the satisfaction of knowing where it was, but I was struck that someone hadn’t made an effort to have it removed. About a week later someone said I should watch the movie “Last Ounce Of Courage.”  I did so and walked away with a reinforced feeling our...

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It’s Always A Gotcha Moment

There’s a bit of Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn in all of us.  There seems to be a fascination with trying to catch something.  I can recall my younger days when there was a fascination with trying to catch insects.  Then there grew an attraction for trying to catch something a bit smarter.  I remember propping a wooden crate up on a stick and leading a string to my hiding spot in hopes something would be lured to my bait and with a yank the prey would be mine. The media and politicians are much like that of a child hiding in the shadows waiting for their prey to make a mistake.  When the time’s right the trap’s sprung on those least expecting it.  The visual is a defining parable for a gotcha moment. A gotcha moment was when Joe Biden said:...

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The Unemployment Office Isn’t A Safe Haven

Do those theatrical talking heads on television really think we’re to believe there’s an economic recovery underway?  Many are scoffing at that notion and the resonating echo of “Bull!” can be heard adrift in the breeze. A case in point is the Hoosier State Capital, Indianapolis.  The far West side was once an exuberant place to dine and entertain oneself in the 70s, 80s and 90s, yet it now resembles what many other communities across America are the enduring reality of.  The Circle City’s 38th Street is beginning to resemble a ghost town with the Tumbleweeds of despair rambling down that once vibrant thoroughfare. Along a three-mile stretch, due East of 465, one must pass the shadows of what once was while traveling to such attractions...

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Gaffes Of A Presidential Runner-up

President Obama recently claimed: “If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that.  Somebody else made that happen.” It drew ridicule and he's backpedaling now by saying he was taken out of context, but he really wasn't for that's what he believes.  He's not the only one who’s tripped on their own lips and committed a Freudian slip during a campaign.  I'm convinced Obama’s blunder was paramount. Presidential candidates are measured by every word they utter, and wouldn't it be interesting to take a stroll through history and see what gaffes presidential election losers made? In the first U.S. election of 1788, John Jay, the loser said: “Those who own the country ought to govern it. Henry Clay, who lost to Andrew Jackson in 1832 and again...

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Is Mediocrity The New Norm

Stockton, California recently filed bankruptcy.  It’s the largest city in US history to do so.  The mayor of Scranton, Pennsylvania recently declared his town’s broke too.  The mayor felt he had little choice but to take drastic measures to offset their devastating 16.8 million dollar shortfall.  Since the city can't pay its bills, the mayor proclaimed he and every city employee would have their compensation slashed to the minimum wage of $7.25 an hour. Is that the new norm we’re faced with? 84,000 US jobs were created in the month of June, but 85,000 individuals went on Social Security disability at the same time.  Many of the unemployed are finding out there are no jobs to be had and when their 99 weeks of unemployment compensation runs...

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The Disintegration Of Independence

A display of public celebration on the 4th of July was once common, yet that’s no longer a given.  Many American cities, towns, and burgs can no longer afford such gleeful events.  Stockton, California is one of many in that fold for it recently filed for bankruptcy protection; it's the largest city in US history to do so. A picnic with colossal fireworks has spiraled into little more than a sparkling fizzle for many.  For millions of Americans there’s little to celebrate.  The plague of unemployment has infected the land, and any spread one may afford would probably have to be done with food stamps. A majority long for a spark of hope, but they’ve been given a delusional concoction of socialistic hemlock.  Some might say it's a...

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The Invaluable Benefits Of Doing Nothing

How old is old?  Your relative age seems to be a guide to that alluring perspective when it pertains to such judgment. A small child may think their parents are old.  The teen would undoubtedly think someone in their 30s or 40s is ancient.  Maybe someone at midlife, like myself, might feel anyone in their 70s or 80s is up there. Recently my Mother, for the first time in her life, admitted she thought she was old at 77. We all race toward that checkered flag of finality.  Some speed through life without much regard for the obstacles around the bend.  Others take a more conscientious approach to the race we run.  Self-reflection may or may not sprout in us at times, but when tragic circumstances knock upon our door or that of others it...

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