Sunday, April 14, 2013

Morals, Integrity and Lack Thereof...

I'm proud to be an American. I'm glad to live in a country that not only provides for those who need assistance in the form of welfare or food stamps, but encourages us to not work so that we partake of the kool-aid. Isn't this today's consensus?

I'm proud to live in a country that has decided to make my decisions for me and my family. Yes, it is a great idea to get away from saying the "Pledge of Allegiance" everyday in school. Why bother? We ignore everything in it. I'm not smart enough to decide if I should own a gun or several guns. I have to count my blessings that these dangerous weapons in my possession have not gotten up during the night and massacred all of us in the house! You don't need a second grade education to see that crime rates are lowest where law abiding citizens have access to and the legal ability to own, possess and carry firearms. I don't need to have a say about our borders, let's invite everybody over. It's not enough of a burden that we have homeless people, starving children, and mistreated veterans, let's open the floodgates so that we can provide for all of those who came here illegally. My kids may not be able to afford tuition, but let's pay for or give discounts to those who have done nothing to earn it.

I am in my second term of not having a president (small letter on purpose). I cannot support or recognize a man who hides his past, does everything in his power to avoid our legal system of checks and balances that keeps our government honest and on track. Executive Privilege is what he seems to understand. This is NOT how politicians are to govern. When you spend so much time and money running for office, then assume that office and all of the good or bad that goes with it. The man in the white house now spends too mcuh time pointing fingers, blaming others and letting others assume responsibility that should be his.

I don't understand how we, as a nation, can cry and mourn over the loss of those at Columbine, in Aurora, CO, or those precious young children in Newtown, CT, yet not blink an eye knowing that well over one million abortions are performed every year. Not for medical reasons. Not due to rape. But primarily because folks are too lazy or cheap to use birth control. If you really want to be pro-choice, then choose to use protection, abstain, or have the child. Those options would be "pro". Anything else is "con".

I remember a time when you could watch the news, and get news. Hard news. Not entertainment. Not sensationalism. People went out and gathered facts. They dug up stories. They reported truths. Journalists had integrity. They had a sense of pride in what they did. Now you see news stories full of misspelled words, poor grammar, and bad information. They don't search out stories, they just relay press releases with no fact checking.

When you live under a would be ruler who believes that you have to spend to reduce debt, then I worry and pray for the future of my children and grand children. When the national media machine regurgitates propaganda vs working as a watchdog, then I worry about the future. So far this year, my paycheck has gone down, my health insurance has gone up substantially. Yet, the government wants to run the healthcare industry. They call if Affordable. Well, it was bad, now it is worse. Our government does not belong in the private sector.

Our government has too many "life long" politicians in office. It is time to clean house, flush the system, or whatever you want to call it. Pay attention. If your representative is not representing you, then do something. Elected officials are public servants. They are to serve. Not rule. Not dictate. They ARE to respect and represent their constituents. One way or another, it is time for change.

It is a shame that we live in a world where we are too busy apologizing for being Americans and for what we believe in than standing up for what we used to be. A world class, world leading country that was once feared, now scorned and ridiculed. Why are we worried about offending other nations because our belief system is different? Why are we apologizing? Why does the leader of the greatest nation on the planet "bow" to foreign leaders? Why are we sending our dollars and military equipment and secrets to our enemies, while we have so many problems at home? It is time that Americans started supporting Americans and taking care of our own. We can't take care of the world. Let's start with our own backyard.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Points to Ponder...

"America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves." -Abraham Lincoln

I would like to be carefree, have no worries, and just do whatever the hell I want to. Those days are long gone, and today, when I look around at our world, our country, my heart breaks. I don't believe I ever thought I would be "old enough" to say that.

On December 14th, 2012, a gunman (no, I won't use his name) shot and killed 20 Elementary kids and 6 adults at Sandy Hook Elementary, in Newtown, CT. It really doesn't matter how he did it. Just that he did it. And while words fail me to explain how this hurts my heart, on that same day, approximately 3,500 abortions were performed, with no public outcry. We spend more time worrying about saving animals than we do a viable fetus.

Financially, our country is in ruins. Entitlements continue to expand. Our elected officials, who should all be in jail because the law says we must have a budget, and they haven't been able to provide one for over 3 years, continue to bicker and fight while our county continues to fail.

Our leader, Obama (I will not call this man President) has blatantly lied to us and does not even backtrack when facts prove he is a liar, watched, WATCHED 4 Americans die and did nothing. He continued to blame these murders on a video when proof showed that he knew better, let his Secretary of State take the blame, then allowed hearings to continue without requiring said Secretary of State to participate.

Now, Obama has charged his lackey, Joe Biden, to look into what can be done to make sure we don't have another Newtown massacre. Read that to mean he is looking for a way to outlaw private ownership of guns. He wants to do what Hitler did. What Stalin did. He wants to disarm America. His "subjects". He wants to eliminate the 2nd Amendment. The 2nd Amendment exists to make sure that we don't have a dictator. So that we can protect ourselves, our homes, our loved ones. From criminals and from a rogue government. Remember, airplanes were flown into the Twin Towers, followed by over 3,000 deaths, and we still have airplanes. And skyscrapers. Timothy McVeigh used fertilize to make his bomb, but we still keep our lawns looking green! Outlawing guns, or certain types of guns will not stop someone intent on killing from killing. If you want to be anti-gun, please post a sign in your front yard to let everyone know.

Our country is at a crossroads. We need to decide whether we want to be sheep, or stand up for our rights. Our government and current laws do not protect the innocent or the victims of crime, they protect the criminals. It is time we decide what kind of country we want to live in. And it is past time that we make changes accordingly.

You may read this and agree. You may read this and disagree. At the moment, it is one of the great things about this country. We can agree do disagree. But in a world filled with a media that makes up news, doesn't report facts, doesn't verify facts, chooses sensationalism over truth and allows people like Piers Morgan to pollute our airwaves with his idiocy, I wonder what the future holds. And I hope and pray that our country can once again be what it was. Fierce, independent, and a place to be proud to call home. Hopefully we can return a leader to Washington who won't embarrass us by bowing to foreign dignitaries or apologizing to foreign leaders because we might have offended them.

Friday, August 3, 2012

What Happened to the Fourth Estate? Or, 'You Call this News?"

When I left East Texas and headed to Idaho in 1979, I was excited to go forth into the world and begin my post high school education. Yes, I just wanted to spin records and have fun on the radio, but I was going to get a college degree in Broadcasting to prove I was serious. Who knew that this would entail taking a typing course. (Really? Typing? I'm gonna talk for a living, not send out letters!) Or advertising courses. (Look, I'll play the commercials, I don't want to write them!) Or News/Journalism courses. (Okay, I'll read the news, I don't want to go out and find it. Woodward and Bernstein do that!) But I soon learned that if you want to spin records (you know, black, round vinyl things withj encoded information that is placed and played on a turntable), I was actually going to get an education. And more.

I had two outstanding tour guides for this process. Kay Wilkins, a very dry conservative who had no tact, but was a man of high morals and ethics, with absolutely no sense of humor. I do believe he had it surgically removed. And John Haeberle. A true southern gentleman, also a man of high moral and ethical conduct, who was the balance to Sir Wilkins. They were the yin and yang of our Broadcasting Department. I am still amazed the Kay Wilkins let us play Rock and Roll, actually surprised that he let us even utter the words. But the key here are the descriptions. High moral conduct and ethical. That is what they were. It was how they lived their lives. And it is this legacy that they imparted to their students.

The "Fourth Estate" most commonly refers to the news media; especially print journalism or "The Press". There was a time when "The Fourth Estate" could be viewed as a watchdog for the American people. They went out, did research on a topic or subject, and reported back their findings. Not just the print media. But also electronic media. There was a time when your local radio station actually had news reporters. Not just someone who "ripped and read" copy from the teletype machines, but actually went out and found items to report on. Being a memeber of the Fourth Estate meant something. There was pride involved. You know, Jimmy Olsen, Clark Kent, Lois Lane pride. Edward R. Murrow. Walter Winchell. Photographer Mathew Brady proud.

Reporter: A writer, investigator, or presenter of news stories.

Sensationalist: 1. Someone who uses subject matter, language, or style producing or designed to produce startling or thrilling impressions or to excite and please vulgar taste. 2. The use of or interest in this subject matter, language, or style: The cheap tabloids relied on sensationalism to increase their circulation.

Remember when you could watch the news, or read a newspaper, and actually believe what you were viewing/reading? Interpretations were not being made. Information was being reported. You were being told facts. And then somewhere along the way, things changed. Maybe it is because our elected officials decided that truth was something that was "on a need to know basis". And the American public "didn't need to know". Maybe the greed of television networks and print media got out of hand and it was "report anything at any cost" to increase ratings or circulation.

Somewhere along the way, news became entertainment. It happened along the time that Walter Cronkite retired. We also lost Peter Jennings and Tom Brokaw. It is almost as if news integrity died with them. Cable news networks are not about reporting news. They are about having guests on to ambush and argue with. Watch the same news story on three different networks, and you get three different fairy tales of the same story.

It has become the norm today to complain about our government. Remember our checks and balances system?

Maybe the checks and balances system would work better if our "journalists" were actually reporting news and hard facts instead of editorializing and spewing their overpaid, undervalued opinions. Watching the news is not far removed from watching Jerry Springer. I look for the day the Bill O'Reilly has to have security in his studio to keep guests from attacking him physically, since he is so good at attacking them verbally. If memory serves, Geraldo Rivera already had a program that required security.

One sad note to mention. Some of these "sensationalists" actually think or believe they are doing a great job. It is time that we not only took back our government by voting (you remember voting, don't you?), but took back our press. Don't watch these shows and networks. Send emails and actual hand written letters (you are aware that some schools are no longer teaching cursive writing, or was this buried and hidden from public view?) of complaint. Write not only to networks, stations or newspapers, but also to their sponsors.

I know that I am not a new journalist or great writer. My education was more focused on graduating so I could go be a dj. But there was a time I was proud to say that I was a member of the Fourth Estate. Today, I would hide my head in shame.You call this news? I call it crap!

Saturday, July 21, 2012

New Addition to the Family...

Welcome Makay Taylor! She is the pretty one! I'm proud to say that Chase has gotten "hitched"! Chase and Makay were married on July 5th, 2012 in the LDS Bountiful Temple. Surrounded by friends and family, it was a beautiful ceremony. I'll add pictures, but I don't have much else to say, except I was honored to serve as a witness for the wedding. May they enjoy a lifetime of happiness and joy as eternal companions!

The LDS Bountiful Temple

With Mom and Dad

With his sisters.

With his friends (no idea what they are doing here!)

At the Reception
Their First Dance!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Changing of the Guard...

Today, in my mind, an era ended. Andy Griffith has passed away at the age of 86. Some of my fondest television "moments" were of spending summer mornings watching "The Andy Griffith Show" and "The Dick Van Dyke Show", back to back. Black and white, already in re-runs, these shows represent what we should hold near and dear in comedy and sit-coms. Humor was created without swearing or vulgarity. These were shows that you could watch with your kids or your parents, or both, and never feel uncomfortable. And in so many episodes, The Andy Griffith Show would include some kind of life lesson. Think about it. We got to watch Ron Howard (you know, Richie Cunningham) grow up right before our eyes.

When "The Andy Griffith Show" was first cast, Andy Griffith was supposed to be the funny guy. Not the straight man. But fate would intervene when Don Knotts saw an episode and contacted Andy Griffith about coming onto the show. They had met when filming "No Time For Sergeants" and had become close friends. Knotts then contacted the producer, and the rest is history. They worked together closely and were a great comedy writing team. Unlike a majority of today's comedy, they did not result to swearing or crudeness. They were funny with their writing style, delivery and wit. If they dropped a "bomb", it wasn't the "F-bomb", but something that you just didn't see coming.

Just as we all grow up and move on, The Andy Griffith show evolved into Mayberry, RFD. And flopped. It just wasn't the same. Andy Griffith eventually moved on to star in Matlock, and still managed to keep some comedy in a tv drama. On "Matlock", we still had an authority figure who was moral and ethical, and occasionally broke out a guitar. I believe that he was still playing the same character he played on "The Andy Griffith Show". He was simply playing Andy Griffith. We still have Dick Van Dyke, but those great comedy wizards are passing away, and taking with them what no one today seems to understand or want, entertainment for the entire family.

Look at television today, and the reigning comedy kings. Profanity and vulgarity run rampant. Apparently they don't know how to be funny without the "shock" value. Andy Griffith, you will be missed. Your comedy, your love for music, and your wholesomeness. We need more "Sheriff Taylor's" in this world.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Better than T.V.! (Watching the last video is a must!)

It's been a long week. Teri and Shania are off in Seaside (Miss Oregon stuff), so I'm "home alone". And since the doc has me on medical leave (I'm not working), the days have been longer than normal! By day, I'm checking on new employment opportunities that don't require me to be on my feet all day. By night, well, I'm looking for entertainment. I've sat around and missed my Oregon family. I've missed my kids. So far, I've decided that the only way to teach Gunner (our Min Pin) to "sit" will be to cut off his hind legs, and I've watched the entire series of "Frontier House", and two episodes of "Mountain Men". Since starting my medical leave, I've done most of the cooking, so I thought I would search out some recipe ideas from bloggers and from YouTube. YouTube has suddenly become my "t.v." entertainment!

On YouTube, you can learn just about anything. How to fold a t-shirt (in a foreign language!). How to peel a boiled egg. How to shape a cowboy hat. Even how to clean a gun. And, you can learn how to cook. And apparently, EVERYONE is "The Next Food Network Star!".

So I did some time watching of these home cooks. Gotta tell you, there is some talent out there. Some straight and to the point. Some that, whether on purpose or just their quirky personality, are side-splitters! Here are a few examples...

This could be your granny!

Or grandpa! Check out the stove and that canister of paprika!

And my favorite! (Redneck Justin Wilson. Let it play, there are 3 parts)

It really is amazing what it out there on the information highway! Thank you, Al Gore!

Friday, June 8, 2012

Warren Buffet, You Suck!

I know times are hard for everyone, but dude, really, the economy is in a horrible spot, and you choose to start mass layoffs at your power company? I'm guessing that everyone still needs power. And I'm guessing that those jobs will still need to be done. So rather than instigate some type of negotiation with your employees, folks who have given you blood, sweat and tears, who have been loyal workers through all kinds of weather ( and really, there has been some horrible weather here in Oregon), some who have left BETTER jobs because they wanted to be home with their families more, yeah, these great folks you decide to layoff and replace with contract workers. I know that you are hurting for money. Or want to bust the Union (and hey, I'm no fan of Unions), but maybe you need to put your ass on a plane and come out here and tell these fine folks face to face that you are cutting them loose to replace them with what, cheaper labor? Maybe you need to put your ass on a plane and fly out here to tell these fine folks face to face that yes, the work will still have to be done, but you won't be getting paid to do it. We are hiring folks we don't know, who have not made any sacrifices for us and going to pay them. I could see how you could cover for a dozen or so folks being let go. But rumors say over 200. Over 200? Did you suddenly decide that you were grossly over staffed and realize that your company was being poorly run and now you needed to thin the ranks? I'm guessing that if you could outsource these power company jobs to another country, that would be the next step.

Well, Warren, things are tough and life's a bitch. And for these 200+ workers, things just got tougher and life became a bigger bitch. Oh, and another thing. You not only are cutting all of these fine folks loose, but the majority are having to wait over the weekend to find out their fate. This isn't Christmas where "anticipation" is a good thing. And why are none of the "top brass" loosing their jobs? Probably because of the simple knowledge that all plumbers know. "Payday is Friday and shit doesn't float uphill". Well, apparently for a lot of good folks, the "Friday" part of that is disappearing. Your a big man. Successful business man. If you are cutting these folks loose, at least have the nerve to face them. That would be the fair thing to do. But I guess your bank account didn't get to be so large because you always do the fair thing.

In the picture above, you look like someone who "gets down, rolls up their sleeves, and goes to work". Maybe there was a time when you did that. But I'm guessing that today you just have someone count your money. Why don't you come to Oregon and talk with these folks. Maybe try to figure out a way to save some jobs. These folks do roll up their sleeves and go to work. But starting next week, a lot of them won't have any work to do. Yep. Warren Buffet, you suck!