Thursday, April 26, 2007

Animal Rights Group Asks Pope to Quit Wearing Fur

VATICAN CITY--An Italian animal rights group called on Pope Benedict XVI to stop wearing fur out of "respect for the sacredness of the lives of all living creatures."The Italian Anti-Vivisection League made the appeal ahead of the pope's April 22 visit to the Italian city of Pavia, where he was to receive a fur cape made of white ermine pelts. Having the pope give up fur would be of "great religious and ethical significance" and be "a praiseworthy example of Christian charity," the group said in an April 13 press release. Vatican tailors had custom-ordered the fur cape from the Pavian furrier Annabella, according to the fur company's owner, Simonetta Ravizza. "It will be the pope's decision where to wear [the fur] or not," she said. @CNS

From the April 27, 2007 edition of The Mirror, the Catholic Newspaper of the Diocese of Springfield-Cape Girardeau.

No indication of what the pope decided to do. However, if he is against abortion , why is he wearing fur?

Why Don't We Honor Our Fallen Servicemembers?

APO AE 09354

Press Center: 0799-063-013
April 23, 2007

Why don’t we honor our fallen servicemembers?

By Army Sgt. Jim Wilt
Combined Joint Task Force-82 Public Affairs Office

BAGRAM AIRFIELD, Afghanistan - Following the deaths of 32 Virginia Tech students, the President of the United States ordered that all American flags be flown at half-staff for one week.

In accordance with the president’s order, the U.S. flag at Bagram Airfield was raised to half-staff.
The deaths of the 32 students are a tragedy that was felt throughout the world. Even Afghan President Hamid Karazi gave his condolences to the U.S. on the loss of so many young lives. The president of a country, which has seen more than its fair share of young deaths, tipped his proverbial hat to these young people.

But I find it ironic that the flags were flown at half-staff for the young men and women who were killed at VT yet it is never lowered for the death of a U.S. servicemember.

Is the life of Sgt. Alexander Van Aalten, a member of our very own task force, killed April 20 in Helmand province not valued the same as these 32 students? Surely his death was as violent as the students.

Aalten’s death lacked the shock factor of the Virginia massacre. It is a daily occurrence these days to see X number of U.S. troops killed in Iraq or Afghanistan scrolling across the ticker at the bottom of the TV screen. People have come to expect casualty counts in the nightly news; they don’t expect to see 32 students killed.

Also, more parents have children in school than children in the military. This makes the deaths hit closer to home for a lot people.

The deaths of our friends and family members in the military are not forgotten by the citizens of our great country. We see this as people line the streets to honor those who lost their lives fighting for the freedom of our country and the freedom of other countries.

Individual states have taken it upon themselves to raise their flags to half-mast when one of their children dies.
I think it is sad that we do not raise the bases’ flag to half-staff when a member of our own task force dies.
Department of Defense directives mandate we honor our fallen leaders from former presidents to the state governors, but there is no provision for the men and women who die preserving our way of life.

I can understand not lowering flags across the country for the death of a single servicemember. But shouldn’t the servicemember’s state lower the flag to show their respect to the fallen trooper, if only for one day? Some states do, but not all of them.

At the very minimum, the servicemember’s forward operating base and the installation of his or her parent unit should show their respect by lowering the flag for one day.

We line the sides of Disney Drive here when one of our brothers or sisters in the service dies, but we don’t lower the flag they fight under. A person can argue that we have Memorial Day for this but tell that to the people who knew the person.

We walk down Disney Drive everyday and salute the ranks above us, and those above us salute back. This is a sign of respect.

The U.S. flag is more than a piece of cloth. It is a symbol, a symbol which represents the people of America.
Hundreds of thousands of men and women have died under our flag, preserving its people.
When we honor the flag by saluting it, we are honoring what it stands for. We honor freedom, the people it represents and a way of life.

Isn’t it time our flag saluted back when a person makes the ultimate sacrifice? Shouldn’t the flag, which represents our society, tip its hat when someone dies to ensure it will fly another day?

If the flags on our FOBs were lowered for just one day after the death of a servicemember, it would show the people who knew the person that society cared, the American people care.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Virginia State, Flags Half Mast, IRAQ WAR DEAD-nothing

Good old W, he ordered the flags to be flown at half staff in memory of the victims of the carnage at Virginia State.

The shooter's actions reinvoked in memories I felt from Jonestown years ago. What he did was horrible.

But every DAY our sons and daughters are dying in Iraq. What about them, W? Don't they too deserve the respect you have ordered for the victims in Virginia State? You don't even allow photos of the planes coming home and until recently, they flew home in the cargo hold of civilian airlines.

Jeez, what were you thinking?

I am a veteran, US Army, and I remember very well Viet Nam. I also remember when Life Magazine starting publishing the photos of guys who died that week. That was the end of the tunnel for nam. Even now, Americans can't stomach reading everyday how many US soldiers died in Irag without anything changing. Nine more died today in a suicide bombing. And Nothing's changed. "Mission Accomplished" my ass.

Say what you want about the suicide bombers, I know I don't know if I could strap a bomb on my chest and blow myself up for political beliefs. How in hell can we fight that?

George, turn out the lights and let's go home!

My Generation....the Who


1. Learn how to jump and down and imitate a local used car dealer, "What a Place!"

2. Start giving away the new gold dollars, they are smaller than Eisenhower dollars and don't weigh as much.

3. Frequent arenas where JQH hangs out.

4. Read about Sheila Wright, dog owner in the Springfield Community Journal.

Oh heck, Gary, just be yourself and try to live down the fact that you weren't elected unanimously. Why was Ralph even running again? How old is he? Is he drunk or just acts like it? More importantly, why did John Wylie and Denny Whayne vote for Ralph? Of course Ralph abstained. Reminds me of the Iowa guy who ran for city council and lost by one vote because he thought it was too egotistical to vote for oneself.....

Allright, so we complain about the Council having all these unanimous votes and now I'm complaining because two guys voted for Ralph. I can see it now, in the aft chambers, Carlson says we gotta quit these unanimous votes, people are beginning to talk, they will think we do all the discussin and cussin in private away from prying eyes, we gotta have some dissension. I know, Denny, you and John vote for Ralph.

License Office Downtown ..... changes

Recently, well almost 30 days ago, my wife and I bought a Cushman truckster, a little three-wheeled vehicle with an OMC 2 cylinder motor. We bought this Cushman because gas keeps going up and it gets great gas mileage. We figure it is just the thing to run about town in, like to the hardware store, to the grocery store, to visit my mother, etc.

It has a steering wheel like a car, gas, brake and clutch pedals like a car, a gear shift lever like a car, doors like a car, windshield wipers like a car,,,,,you're getting the picture, it is like a car except it has three wheels.

I went to the downtown license office this afternoon to title the machine. I have been going to the Glen Isle or the Fremont office since Blount privatized them and because they are not downtown...don't get me started on that....but since I went to the post office (I like the post office on Chestnut better than the one on Glen Isle...well actually, I like the post office out by Kohl's the best, but it is too far to drive out there and the one on Chestnut is closest to my house. There used to be a post office sub station in the Pricecutter on Campbell across from Maschino's but it is no more, now THAT was convenient!)

Anyhow, since I was downtown at the post office, and it was getting close to fine time if I didn't get this title switched over to our name, I decided to go to the downtown license burearu.

So I go through the ordeal of finding a parking spot and walked up the hill and into the canyon between Heer's and the License bureau office. (Let me tell you, a mighty wind was blowing, my friend,in the passageway, a mighty wind was blowing.) I walked into the license bureau lobby and found that the office had been moved to the second floor. The building has the slowest elevators. Luckily this was a slow day, but can you imagine what it is like at the end and the beginning of the month?

I wnet into the second floor office. There were probably 15 people sitting in those fiberglass chairs that look like Eames chairs and that maybe worth something on ebay, but they are cheap knockoffs adn they are not. I looked and thought to myself, "this is gonna hurt," when all of a sudden a woman called out, "What are you here for?" "Car Title," I quickly replied.

I bypassed the Eames lookalike chairs entirely and went directly to her desk. A deeply tanned woman with cleavage was talking with her and getting something out of a desk drawer, paperclips I think. Her cleavage was deep but that wasn't what was distracting me, it was her tan, she looked almost orange. I think she ran the place because I later saw her when I was talking to a guard on the ground floor, she was carrying a fedex envelope and said goodbye to the guard. He seemed to know her.

Why did it move to the second floor. I asked the clerk, (I got in without a line but one quickly formed behind me, I move slow.) She sidestepped my answer with a question, "Isn't it more convenient up here?" I didn't want to spend my afternoon engaged in verbal jousts with a non-state employee conducting state business.

I titled the vehicle and paid the sales tax. I have to get a motorcycle license plate and motorcycle inspection sticker because it is a motorcycle-tricycle.
The clerk gave me a business card with the name of a company that can perform the inspection. She also told me I had to have a motorcycle endorsement on my driver's license.

I took the building's slowest elevator down to the lobby again. I asked the guard a question: "WHO DECIDED TO MOVE THE OFFICE TO THE SECOND FLOOR???" He said you ought to be here at the end of the month when people are getting their plates before the fines kick in, it's a mess he said. He told me there are two more offices in Springfield, adn this one had been downsized.

I asked who owned it, he said he thought the same lady who owned the ones in Springfield also owned the ones in Nixa and Ozark. MMMM>>>>>would that be Shane Shoeler's wife? I know I didn't spell his name correctly but who cares, I'm not a newspaper. This is a blog, we don't have to have all our facts correct.

I decided while I was in the building, to go into the testing room and take the motorcycle written test. I knew I hadn't studied for it, but I have been driving for over 40 years, I have a CDL A with all the endorsements and besides, how hard could it be.

I went through the door. The guy behind the desk affirmed that I needed a motorcycle endorsement to drive the Cushman. I could take the written test there, but I would have to go somewhere else to take the driving portion of the Ozark, Nixa, Strafford, etc.

He also told me that since I was adding an endorsement to my license, and it had been over a year since I took the HAZMAT test, I would have to retake the test to keep the endorsement. "Oh man," I said, "That's a tough test. I failed it twice before I passed it and I thought I was pretty smart."

I took both tests, the motorcycle written test and the HAZMAT test. I flunked the motorcycle test and passed the HAZMAT test. Go figure. He suggested I go outside to the study area, study and come back in and retest. I did as he suggested.

I failed the test again.


Tuesday, April 24, 2007

What's it all about, Alfie?

jsut some rambling thoughts:
Boy Blunt is big in the Romney camp.
Guilianni comes to Springberg to host a meal with Roy B.

What is going on here?