Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Wilma is outta here . . .

Wow! What a tiresome week it has been! Just realized I haven't posted since last Monday - and so thought I'd better let y'all know I didn't drop off the face of the earth.

Between hand wringing, watching the path of Wilma, stressing (in a good way) about my upcoming trip to NYC, father-in-law in hospital, getting our homeschool stuff organized, etc. I haven't been in much of a writing mood.

We were very blessed to have only tropical storm force winds from Wilma here. My sister's home was directly in the path of the storm, but thankfully the damage sustained to their property appears to have been minimal.

I've got a lot in my head to write, but I don't know if I'll be able to settle myself down 'til I get back - please hang in there with me, and I'll try to get my act together next week after my visit to New York.

Monday, October 17, 2005

A Quick Random Thought . . .

Today is a fall cleaning day . . . I'm helping my 11 year old and almost 9 year old daughters clean their room. This in mental preparation for my trip to NYC. Why bother, you might ask? I really don't know - except that I've allowed them to try to organize it themselves for the last month - and they haven't been able to get it done to my satisfaction yet. Oldest is a very creative type - lots of drawings and paper cuttings, sewing, clay, etc. At any rate, it's a huge job - entails cleaning out every drawer and container in the room and tossing the garbage, filling a few bags for donation, etc. Just to clarify, the trash is generally of the artwork variety - I allow them to keep things for their portfolios but encourage them to throw away stuff they weren't happy with - so I'm not talking food wrappers or really nasty garbage as that isn't allowed in their room.

As I'm working on this mass of clutter, however, it strikes me that if I (and they) cannot keep up with where their little acquisitions end up and periodically have to do an audit, is it any wonder that our government gets so bogged down with extraneous garbage in the form of social, environmental, or economic programs? I mean, it's just so much easier to start new programs than it is to take the time and effort to discover where they may already be in effect or overlapping. I'm thinking that before any money or time should be allocated for ANY new program, the promoters of said program should have to demonstrate that they've done their homework - show what steps they've taken to determine where in the scheme of things their program would fit, and to insure that they're not overlapping already established programs. Just how much governmental garbage (or fat) d'ya think might be discovered? Understand, I'm not promoting governmental programs of any sort - kinda goes against my libertarian bent - but knowing that my personal preference for government isn't likely to transpire in my lifetime, I'm just thinking there oughtta be some logical way to limit these types of programs.

Just my musings for the day - gotta keep my brain busy on something to keep it from turning to mush!

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

This Day in History . . .

There have been a number of barbaric attacks worldwide on this day in history - and while they should sadden us, they should also strengthen our resolve to eradicate, as much as possible, this form of terrorism.

1984 - Brighton hotel bombing: Margaret Thatcher survives an IRA bomb, which shredded her bathroom barely two minutes after she had left it

1988 - two officers of the Victoria Police are gunned down executional style in the Walsh Street police shootings, Australia

1997 - Sidi Daoud massacre in Algeria; 43 killed at a fake roadblock

2000 - In Aden, Yemen, the USS Cole is badly damaged by two suicide bombers, killing 17 crewmembers and wounding at least 39

2002 - Bali bombing: In Bali, terrorists detonate bombs in two nightclubs in Kuta, killing 202 and wounding over 300

Be sure to head over to Personal Protection Training & Firearm Instruction for a tribute and memorial to the USS Cole.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Something there is that doesn't love a wall . . .

Particularly when one feels they are being "fenced out". My title is a reference to the famous poem by Robert Frost called Mending Fences. In the poem, he ponders why he and his neighbor should even have the stone fence between them -

He is all pine and I am apple orchard.
My apple trees will never get across
And eat the cones under his pines, I tell him.
He only says, 'Good fences make good neighbors'.
Spring is the mischief in me, and I wonder
If I could put a notion in his head:
'Why do they make good neighbors? Isn't it
Where there are cows?
But here there are no cows.
Before I built a wall I'd ask to know
What I was walling in or walling out,
And to whom I was like to give offence.

I understand Frost's thoughts here - and it holds true throughout life. Unless we've been taught from a child to respect boundaries, our bodies, minds and souls rebel against them. Having been raised in a family where self discipline and respect for others was consistantly emphasized, though, I find myself agreeing with his neighbor in saying "Good fences make good neighbors".

A wall (or fence) has a psychological component which (at least in my mind) is more important than it's physical aspect. A wall says to me that those on the other side do not wish to be trespassed against. It says "you're not welcome here unless you're invited". I respect a wall. Doesn't necessarily mean I like it, but I respect it.

I believe we should build a wall between the U.S. and Mexico. It's time that we stood up for ourselves - those who want to share in our freedom badly enough can either go through legal channels to get here, or work to reform the situation in their own country. I know it's a radical idea - but our forefathers put all their blood, sweat and tears into this nation. They fought and died to insure the freedoms that we take so lightly. Why cannot those in other countries work their own revolution? The answer is that as long as we keep our borders as easy to navigate as they have been, why should they? A wall might just inspire those on the other side to work towards reform to better their lives in their own country.

I'm joining the Guard our Borders Blogburst where you can find lots more posts on this subject . . . and while you're at it, sign the petition! H/T to Ogre's Politics & Views.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

S. Asia Quake Hits Area Where Osama Hides . . .

But as my hubby succintly points out, it's only an act of Godly wrath and retribution when a natural disaster happens in a country of Christian "infidels". LOL. Indeed. (To use one of Instapundit's favorite words!)

Monday, October 03, 2005

This Week in History . . .

War Battles, Plane Crashes, Deadly Fires & a bit of Technology thrown in for good measure!

October 2
1780 - American Revolutionary War: British spy John Andre is hanged by American forces for his role in Benedict Arnold's plot to sell West Point to the British Army.
1835 - The Texas Revolution begins with the Battle of Gonzales: Mexican soldiers attempt to disarm the people of Gonzales, Texas, but encounter stiff resistance from a hastily assembled militia.
1889 - In Colorado, Nicholas Creede strikes it rich in silver during the last great silver boom of the American old west.
1924 - The Geneva Protocol is adopted as a means to strengthen the League of Nations. The League of Nations turned out to be no more successful at it's mission (world peace) than the current inception (UN) is today. If we haven't learned much from such recent history . . . oh, nevermind.
1950 - The comic strip Peanuts by Charles M. Schulz is first published in seven US newspapers.
1959 - The Twilight Zone pilot premieres.
1962 - Johnny Carson debuts as host of The Tonight Show.

October 3
1789 - George Washington proclaims the first Thanksgiving Day. Incidentally, the favorite holiday of LBF - without a doubt!
1962 - At Cape Canaveral the Mercury 8 blasts off with Astronaut Wally Schirra aboard for a nine-hour flight.
1964 - Underdog debuts on CBS. LBF remembers (vaguely) watching Underdog as her favorite cartoon!
1995 - O. J. Simpson found not guilty of murder. How many of my readers have actually found that they can take a glove and make it appear to be too small, when it in fact fits just fine? Ah well. Ancient history now!

October 4
1895 - The first U.S. Open Mens' Golf Championship run by the United States Golf Association was played on a nine-hole course in Newport, Rhode Island.
1957 - Launch of Sputnik I, the first artificial satellite to orbit the Earth.
1960 - An Eastern Airlines Lockheed L-188 Electra flying from Boston crashes killing 62 people after a bird strike.
1983 - Richard Noble sets a new land speed record of 633.468 mph, driving Thrust 2 at the Black Rock Desert, Nevada.
1993 - Doom press-release version is made available to journalists for review.

October 5
1877 - Chief Joseph surrenders his Nez Perce band to General Nelson A. Miles
1921 - The World Series was broadcast on the radio for the first time.
1947 - The first televised White House address is given by President Harry S. Truman.
1949 - WSAZ, the United States' first television station, located in Huntington, West Virginia, begins broadcasting.
1981 - Raoul Wallenberg becomes an honorary American citizen - interesting to note that this was most likely a posthumous honor as there is no firm evidence that he was alive.

October 6
1884 - The Naval War College of the United States Navy was founded in Newport, Rhode Island.
1889 - Thomas Alva Edison shows his first motion picture.
1955 - A United Airlines DC-4 crashes in Medicine Bow Peak, Wyoming, killing 66 people

October 7
1780 - Battle of Kings Mountain: American Patriot militia defeat Loyalist irregulars led by British colonel Patrick Ferguson in South Carolina.
1816 - First double-decked steamboat, the "Washington", arrives in New Orleans
1943 - Japan executes 100 American prisoners on Wake Island.

October 8
1871 - Three major fires break out on the shores of Lake Michigan in Chicago, Illinois, Peshtigo, Wisconsin, and Holland, Michigan. Who knew there was more than one great fire that day?!

* The Great Chicago Fire is the most famous of these, burning 1,200,000 acres (4,900 km²) in one day, eventually destroying about 17,450 buildings, and killing about 250 people while leaving another 90,000 homeless.
* The Peshtigo Fire burns 1,200,000 acres (4,900 km²) across six counties in one day and kills 1,200 to 2,500 people, making it the deadliest in United States history.
* The Holland Fire destroys at least two towns.

1944 - The radio show, The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet debuts
1956 - New York Yankees baseball pitcher Don Larsen pitches first (and only) perfect game in World Series history in Game 5 of the 1956 World Series.