The Streets of San Francisco…

When I think of San Francisco I think of the hilly terrain, beautiful views and a bustling metropolitan area.  That is the memory I have of my last visit to that city several years ago…maybe a decade or a little more…and I was shocked to read of those same streets in a report put together by KNTV, the local television station, recently.

The KNTV reporters referred to the “diseased streets” they found in the city proper.  This was the downtown area encompassing about 153 city blocks.  They found the area littered with garbage including 100 drug needles and 300 piles of human feces.  An infectious disease expert cautioned that used needles can cause viral diseases such as HIV and Hepatitis, and also discussed the piles of human feces releasing airborne viruses such as rotavirus which causes human diarrhea or worse.

Dr. Lee Riley, an infectious disease expert from UC-Berkeley believes that parts of San Francisco may be worse than the world’s dirtiest slums.  He is quoted as saying “The contamination is much greater than communities in Brazil or Kenya or India” and he added that in those countries the residents work to try to maintain their residences but here that is not happening since the homeless are rousted frequently.  They leave their mess behind obviously because they do not have the means nor the desire to do anything about that mess.

For all our accumulated wisdom, we seem to have not become wise enough to solve basic issues such as this; we are producing more and more drug-dependent people, likely losing some of what might’ve been the best and brightest in that group who became addicted and fell between the cracks from that time until they OD’d and were carted off to be incinerated to ashes.

A pre-school teacher said that she and her students “see poop, we see pee, we see needles, and we see trash.”  This is not conducive to raising and educating the next generation.  These children are growing up in an environment that would appear to them to condone the use of drugs since they see it all around them.  They are growing up in a liberal city with a liberal worldview.  They are watching the adults they seek to become apparently ignore such issues since the issues continue to fester and grow in magnitude.  What do we expect of them when these are their early childhood memories?

The financial cost is growing.  Removing one pile of human feces takes a half-hour because the “steamer has to come.  He has to park the steamer. he’s got to come out with his steamer, disinfect, steam clean, roll up and go”.  That process cost San Francisco about $30 Million in the 2016-2017 fiscal year.

This is one of the shining lights on the Left Coast.  This is a liberal haven that likes to be permissive of people’s various inclinations apparently including the use of heroin and obviously, other such drugs, gateway drugs, or this would not be a growing problem such as it obviously is.  Yet where is the city government?  Where is the state government?  It seems those entities are more concerned with where the tax dollars will come from for the daily clean-up and the sequestering of addicts than for the fight to end the addiction.

Easier said than done?  Certainly, that is true, but there is no “done” in sight given the current approach and the current system.  There is only finding the new answers to where the additional clean-up money is to come from since it isn’t going to come from those who are the problem.  The answer obviously is to stop the flow of drugs and to vigorously enforce the laws already on the books.

I wonder what the situation would be today had there been a solid conservative city government in a solidly conservative state?  Would the majority have taken this seriously earlier and gotten its hands around the neck of the users and their suppliers?  I’d wager that there would be stronger enforcement efforts than have been seen.  I’d wager that those using and those supplying would’ve been taken to task far earlier, instead of simply being tolerated and corralled in certain areas that are known to residents to be places to avoid if you don’t want to see where your society is headed.

These kinds of issues are difficult enough to manage and to ultimately eliminate without having to make that happen in a liberal political world.  Those of us in the Midwest can look at Chicago or Milwaukee for the reminder that this is not just a San Francisco kind of issue.  There is a kind of tough love in the heads of conservatives that forces us to face the problems of the day and to resolve those problems.  We’re not perfect but neither do we ignore human issues such as these by keeping them out-of-the-public-eye.


“The View” & VP Pence…

Joy Behar made a remark about VP Mike Pence and his Christian faith that I found abhorrent as well as just plain dumb on her part.  That ABC has still taken no steps to even admonish her, at least publicly, is quite telling about that network…and likely about networks in general, unfortunately.

The incident was, of course, related to our Vice President’s professing of his faith and was apparently just too much for Ms. Behar to take given what appears to be her denial of faith not just for self but for all given her personal omniscience that denies the faith and those who profess to believe in the deity.

For a person to make such a remark is telling of the individual and his or her basic belief system in my world.  I believe and I find such remarks, even if flippant, and obviously baseless, to be offensive.  That didn’t cost ABC my viewership since I couldn’t tell you when I last watched something on ABC unless that might have been the channel carrying some sporting event that I wanted to watch.

Talking heads, in general, are not something I feel in need of unless they are talking current events or news of the day or the like.  The array of television shows throughout the day are appalling.  They seem to go from bad to worse with every new iteration.  The barrel from which the new “talent” is pulled must’ve had some dregs at the bottom for that seems more the norm on daytime TV today than ever before.

The whole anti-religious thing is, of course, base.  I do not trample the beliefs of others, even those of non-believers, but I refuse to accept their ignorant comments when they demean a good person, and our Vice President is among the best persons to ever have held that office.  That he is a Christian is a big plus in my book, and is something that makes me even more content with him in that office.

It is seldom that a non-believer has ever made any remark about my faith, let alone a denigrating remark about my faith and the fact that I believe in God.  Do I hear God speak to me?  Maybe not in actual voice, but absolutely in what I believe and why I believe and throughout each of my days as I am facing decisions, making people feel good about themselves and generally in forming me for the day and what it holds for me.

Once my ire and disgust for her died down, I was simply sorry for her and the condition she finds herself in if lashing out at a believer in Jesus Christ is part of the normal approach she takes to each day He lays out before her.

Making a joke or intimating some kind of weakness on the part of a person who ‘listens’ to Christ as he or she courses through each day was apparently her defense mechanism kicking in since she professes to be a non-believer.  Might it really be that she fears she is wrong and belittles others as a salve for her own wounds?  Or is it that she is just plain ignorant and refusing of anything she can’t wrap her own mind around?

Now, as to ABC and its total apparent disregard for her on-air foul-up (that is a least what it was in my mind), I guess we have a good idea of what drives that network’s decisions in programming and the people it wishes to have representing it on air.  I have not watched ABC unless, as I said, for some event not to be found elsewhere.  I will not watch ABC anymore or any less than already is the case.  But Joy Behar has a special place in my mind, and it is a place where I lament that she can be so ignorant on such an important subject as her own faith.

Mike Pence is one who walks his faith every day and every waking moment if I’m not mistaken.  That Joy Behar found it necessary to somehow justify her non-belief system at his expense did nothing but make Mike Pence even more special in my opinion.  Ideally, she might find her own faith while that is still possible during this lifetime.  If she is comfortable where she is today and has no need for faith in God, she is where she is…even though that is not the best place from my point-of-view.

Huge U.S. Supreme Court Case…

The U.S. Supreme Court has determined it will hear a case that, depending upon the Court’s majority finding, could have a very significant effect on unions which represent government employees.  In this case, the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) which requires that all workers within its various contracts must be dues-paying members is defending that position against a member, Mark Janus.

Janus is employed at the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services and is required to pay dues whether or not he is a member of AFSCME.  The U. S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear this case, and given the conservative bent of this court, there is an apparent likelihood that AFSCME could lose this case.  This case is monumental from the unions’ perspective since AFSCME is not the only such union arrangement.  These ‘fees’ are known as “fair share” fees since the person actually benefits from the agreement negotiated by the union even though not a member of the union.  These fair share fees have been held legal for decades.

If the U.S. Supreme Court, as expected, rules against these contractual requirements, the entire labor union world is likely to feel the impact.  The impact could literally be the death knell for many such organizations that are heavily dependent upon the current interpretation.

There are already 28 “right-to-work” states and this case, if decided as thought it may well be, will impact the rest of the states where there are an estimated 5 million public sector employees.  Some of those unions that could be impacted will be able to survive but others may well find that they will simply cease to have the funding necessary to continue to exist.

Neil Gorsuch represents the key vote in this case, as he has in other cases since he brought the Supreme Court to be a current conservative majority court.  The significance of that one appointment is showcased in this prospective decision.  The significance of a conservative majority in Congress and the White House becomes better-understood when such cases emerge and a conservative majority hears the cases.

The failure of Congress to approve the appointment of Merrick Garland demonstrates the importance of the Republican/Conservative majority in Congress, as well as the importance of the potentially-renegade group of Conservatives that try to gain even better deals at the risk of getting no deal.

This behind-the-scenes view also shows the critical importance of a Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) as well as the potential torpedoing impact of the free-spirited conservative sector of the Republican House.

It also shows why ‘suddenly’ many large unions are paying more attention to moderate members who likely would represent lost votes if the Court decides this case as expected.  The big unions have taken much of their membership for granted since they didn’t have any real power.  If they wanted the jobs in an organized facility, they paid the dues extracted by the unions.

Union membership today is roughly 10.7 percent of U.S. workers.  That is about half of the number that was members in 1983.  And it is public sector membership that has served the union movement well since it has propped up membership numbers.  The rate of union membership in government workers is some 34+% today compared to just 6.5% of workers in the private sector.

The really big part of this whole picture is that union membership favors the Democrats while Republicans benefit from reduced union membership.  A recent study has indicated that the reduced union membership has cut the Democrat share of the votes cast nationally by 3.5%.  Fewer Dems in office impacts unions unfavorably.  So the trend feeds upon itself to the detriment of both unions and Democrats.

This situation will require a complete re-thinking by both Democrats and union leaders if it is to be stemmed before it does even more serious damage to the Democrat brand.  Add to this phenomenon a President by the name of Donald Trump who could be instrumental in the furtherance of the Democrats’ slide down the hillside, and you begin to better appreciate the hair-on-fire approach of the Dems on Capitol Hill.

The Dems recognize that their brand is also in trouble, and they know they need to somehow regain their numeric superiority and do so quickly.  This expected decision at the U.S. Supreme Court level can only exacerbate the problem felt by the Dems.

Movements such as this, whether organized or simply self-propagating, can be either beneficial or detrimental.  Today, we see the conservatives making gains at expense of the liberals.  It is important that this continues since 3.5% fewer Democrat votes can only translate into better Republican majorities in Congress.  And the grassroots efforts underway and paying off already for the conservative movement as a growing sector in the Republican Party is evident.

NOW, it is up to us conservatives to be certain the Republican Party does not languish amidst its newfound good fortune as has been its wont in the past.  This is not the time to lay back and celebrate good fortune.  It is the time to press the fight more vigorously.  The Dems can lament their own bad fortune; us Conservatives need not relax and give them the opportunity to recover.

The fortune of America is at stake.  That is not overly dramatic.  Conservatism is the driving force, not simply Republicanism.  A reduction in unionism is good for conservatism and conservatism is good for the country.  Unfortunately for the Dems, they seem to be on the wrong side of this equation, but they did that to themselves.

This is not our fault, but it is our opportunity.


Gun-Free School Zones?

We tend to over-react to terrible scenes such as those we witnessed this past week in the school shooting in Florida, and this time is little different.  These scenes are always horrific, and always poignant since we cannot comprehend as adults that our kids can be placed in jeopardy so easily, and we certainly do not wish our family-member students or their friends to undergo such a terrible thing.  Even those of us watching from half a country away felt those same things, but not all of us arrived at the same conclusion.

As that was unfolding, we also knew we were in for renewed demands for gun-free zones and the confiscation/banning of “AR-15s” and everything else that goes with the gun control hysteria.  The ownership of what are usually called AR-15s stands at some 15 MILLION pieces.  The idea that this weapon is going to go away is farcical unless the police forces and our armed forces in this country are mobilized and mount a campaign across this country to collect, forcibly if necessary, every one of these types of weapons.

That is simply not about to occur; however, if it did occur that would be forever seen as the action that took our freedom away from each of us.  There are those who would nonetheless go ahead with such a forced collection of these firearms because they believe these weapons are bad in and of themselves.  These people do not own guns, do not understand those who do and have no concern about the very obvious repercussions that would follow such an action.  Their simple mantra is “Guns Are Bad” and that is more than sufficient to carry them to the conclusion that all guns need to be confiscated.

We then find ourselves back at the supposed beginning of this endless loop.  This situation was significantly exacerbated by another ugly fact.  First, we were told that one police officer failed to enter the building and instead hid behind a vehicle as the shooting continued.  We now hear that there were several officers of the law on the scene that failed to follow their training:  Go To The Gunfire.  They will be dealt with as they ought to be dealt with; one has reportedly already been terminated from his position and the stigma will remain for him or her the rest of this life.

The vast majority of the men and women in Blue is dedicated to doing whatever is required of them in these situations.  They train and they typically respond as they were trained.  Where that broke down in this situation will certainly be determined and necessary corrections will be made.  The leaders of those departments will see to that, and should that not occur, the citizenry will demand changes.

Back to the “AR-15″s.  There are reportedly some 15 million such weapons owned by private citizens all across this country today.  Since there are so many in the hands of people, it is very near an impossibility that these weapons would be subjected to confiscation even if authorities somehow determined they had the right to do so…and that would be a huge stretch given our Constitution.  This is a rifle rather than a handgun.  Approximately 2% of all gun homicides each year are due to rifles.  65% are caused by the use of handguns.

All this notwithstanding, the furor arising from these kinds of incidents will not help in assuring the rights of gun owners.  Amendments have been made to the Constitution and this could be one of the areas that will see that kind of public sentiment reaching the proportions necessary to cause those wheels to turn more rapidly.  Our right to keep and bear arms is only as sacrosanct as the Constitution makes them.  Even then we have to judiciously follow the goings on in Washington, D.C. to be sure this will continue to be the case.  We must be involved.

We see again where our votes make a significant difference even when we don’t necessarily recognize that to be the case.  This is potentially one of the classic conservatives vs. liberals national debates.  It certainly will enter into coming elections as candidates make their views known.

As a conservative, I believe the right to keep and bear arms is as important today as yesterday, if not even more important.  I know we conservatives are going to be beat up verbally as this debate again takes center stage in America.  We need to hold our ground.  We need to make sure that our officers of the law do not shirk their duties as apparently happened to at least one, and maybe more, in this most recent case.  I am certain of that in my locality, but as the boundaries are spread out further from my seat today, I lose the ability to know for sure where each department stands on such issues.  This issue, as most issues, starts at the local level and you and I can and do have influence at that level.

We exercise our rights to vote and we vote for people we know to be conservative in their beliefs.  We trust them to remain as they were the day before we sent them to their positions.  This kind of issue begins at home no matter how big or small “at home” is for each of us.  This begins where we raise our children and where they are educated as they rise to adulthood.  This is an individual issue, a village issue, a city issue, a county issue and a state issue for each and every reader of this blog today.

We are the people who make the laws, and we are the people who can change the laws.  This is a vivid example of the importance of the decisions you and I make at the lowest level, in the family unit, and at all later levels through our votes; all the way to the Office of the President of the United States of America where conservative jurists are named as candidates to the U.S. Supreme Court but who must be approved by our Congress.  Every level on the climb up that ladder is an important level for we can fall down on our jobs anywhere along that path.

We mourn this loss of innocent life.  We recognize the need for well-trained and determined officers of the law at all levels.  We recognize that conservative principles will only be in force if we vote to keep our conservative politicians and judges in place and functioning effectively.  And we understand that we are likely in the minority so our votes have to be made properly and regularly, and we have to defend those we’ve sent to a higher position as they work to do our bidding.

It’s What We Make Of It…

We all have days when it seems the world may be against us.  Nothing seems to be going our way, at least without a lot of additional push on our parts.  We just plain get demoralized and then we ‘sit and stew’ as a long-gone relative would say.  As I tuned in my radio this morning I caught an amazing basketball score but couldn’t remember the names of the teams.

Team 1 led Team 2 at half-time by a score of 53 to 19.  You already know where this is going, I’m sure.  Team 2 won that game by a handful of points.  How many times in our respective lives might we have eeked out a win if we’d just kept pushing all the way to that last minute on the clock?

We can be our own worst enemies in virtually all aspects of our lives if we do not give everything we do everything we have.  I know that we’ve probably had a ‘life coach’ in one or more stages of our lives that we’d have loved to be able to put in our rearview mirrors occasionally.  That person might’ve been a relative or a supervisor or a Pastor or just a very good friend.  We seem able to only take advice in small doses and that is especially true when we need that advice more than usual.

It almost seems that our ‘advisors’ are using a fire hose-sized dosage of advice when we are simply fed up with advice…period.  Those are the times when we simply feel that the entire world must be in the other corner.  In some of those situations, we find our way out to where the sun is shining brightly again, and in some situations, we seem to wallow in the personal funk for days…or longer.

All the good advice in our worldview is not going to help if we are not ready to accept that good advice.  How often do we look back at situations in life’s rearview mirror and finally admit that it was our own fault that we didn’t attain what we were striving for?  Or at least admit that we could’ve gotten to a more respectable place before we gave up the ghost?  We finally accept that we might have been the cause rather than someone else we’d blamed for that outcome.

If we are involved in team sports, maybe we needed to share more of the ‘credit’ for not winning.  If it is us vs. the world, maybe we were simply trying to climb a mountain higher than that we could handle given life experience and physical and mental preparation.  Maybe we should simply not have gotten ourselves into that situation. PERIOD.

Life is what we make of it.  If we are prone to giving up before the clock runs out, we are going to learn about losing more than we’d like.  If we are ready for Level One of anything but think we ought to be able to score well in Level Three, we need be ready for that life lesson that tells us, sometimes painfully, that we were wrong; that we were not ready for that level of challenge.

Of course, in this world of “It is what we make of it”, we always have the opportunity to place blame for poor results on the shoulders of others.  That occurs when we are unable to be man or woman enough to simply look ourselves in the eyes in that ‘mirror’ of life and admit that we took on more than we were prepared to handle.

And even that personal admission of some level of blame for the outcome is part of the “It is what we make of it” lesson.  That is when we finally may be getting to the point of understanding self, of knowing what our abilities were at that time compared to the abilities of those who bested us in whatever was the challenge du jour.

We see coaches in various situations that seem to know us better than we know ourselves.  Those are the people from whom we can learn a lot if we will permit that learning to take place.  I reserve my pity for those who do not seem to have it in themselves to reckon with what the world is trying to tell them, who bang their heads against the stone wall over and over again.

In a political sense, that person might be Hillary Clinton.   We are pretty safe in the assumption that this family has more than sufficient money to live out their lives in relative obscurity as non-political types but, like the moth attracted to the flame, they appear unable to reach the moment of personal truth.

In other situations, we see the coach who had aspirations of playing a sport professionally but who finally accepted that he or she was not quite of that caliber.  They might now be coaching others and doing very well at that level.  And still in love with their lives.

Everything in this life is what we make of it.  Some rise above significant challenges and achieve in other ways.  Some never get the message.  Some flop around like a fish out of the water as they move from acceptance to denial to acceptance to denial again.  Those of us who come to understand where we best fit and embrace that place are in the best of all worlds.

It is what WE make of it!   Of course, our Maker is ready to help us whenever we get there.

Maxine Speaks Her Mind…

If you remember the Maxine comic strip, the following (originally titled Right On Maxine!!!) piece provides an interesting take apparently fed by her creators or at least needing to be so attributed.  The original piece used the word ‘poot’ as a descriptive term; I chose to be cruder…but not too crude.

I bought a bird feeder.  I hung it on my back porch and filled it with seed.  What a beauty of a bird feeder it was, as I filled it lovingly with seed.  Within a week we had hundreds of birds taking advantage of the continuous flow of free and easily accessible food.

But then the birds started building nests in the boards of the patio, above the table, and next to the barbecue.

Then came the poop.  It was everywhere: on the patio tile, the chairs, the table…everywhere!

Then some of the birds turned mean.  They would dive bomb me and try to peck me even though I had fed them out of my own pocket.

And other birds were boisterous and loud.  They sat on the feeder and squawked and screamed at all hours of the day and night and demanded that I fill it when it got low on food.

After a while, I couldn’t sit on my own back porch anymore.  So I took down the bird feeder and in three days the birds were gone.  I cleaned up their mess and took down the many nests they had built all over the patio.

Soon the back yard was like it used to be…quiet, serene…and no one demanding their rights to a free meal.

Now let’s see…Our government gives out free food, subsidized housing, free medical care and free education, and allows anyone born here to be an automatic citizen.

Then the illegals came by the tens of thousands.  Suddenly our taxes went up to pay for free services; small apartments are housing 5 families; you have to wait 6 hours to be seen by an emergency room doctor; your child’s second grade class is behind other schools because over half the class doesn’t speak English.

Corn Flakes now come in a bilingual box; I have to ‘press one’ to hear my bank talk to me in English, and people waving flags other than “ours” are squawking and screaming in the streets, demanding more rights and free liberties.

Just my opinion, but maybe it’s time for the government to take down the bird feeder.  If you agree, pass it on; if not, just continue cleaning up the poop!

Obviously, this targets the influx of aliens, some legal and some illegal.  This targets the talk about building a fence across our entire Southern border.  This targets the discussions on how secure our borders are and what we should allow and what should not be allowed.  These are very difficult subjects and these are subjects we are not always too interested in discussing for fear we’ll be seen as hateful people.  These are things that threaten to divide us.  These are things that we very probably would find okay if the influx were controlled to permit our economy to absorb the new population.

These are things that some politicians use to pin ugly “tails on the donkeys” who dare oppose their desires to add to their voter roles through such immigration.  It is true that there are some who are opposed for reasons we’d prefer didn’t exist.  To politicize this issue is a very bad way to try to resolve the issue and to help those we purportedly desire to help.

My solution for the bird feeder was simple: I didn’t like all the raucous Starlings but did like the Gold Finches.  I bought feeders that were only accessible by finches and even those cute little birds have some foul habits, but at least I was able to decide for myself what I felt I could accommodate.

Our immigration policies are in need of some changes and they are certainly in need of strong protection.  I don’t think we want to be forced to stop filling the feeder, but I believe we will be very resistant to simply opening our doors, and that is the proper way to consider things of such importance to us all.

Unfortunately, there is a political party that sees itself gaining from bringing as many immigrants into our country as can possibly happen; and, that party is willing to forego the proper vetting and the reasonable and rational manner in which we welcome these new people to our shores.

The Democrat Party’s leaders have chosen to use these people and this issue to their personal benefit.  That they only see these fellow humans as additional votes is despicable…and yet that is where they are at…and they get the very willing cooperation of the vast majority of those in the press who are also believers in liberal politics.

We have seen the opposition in all its dark splendor since our elected President Donald Trump assumed his position; and, we will continue to see this portrait of disgust unfolding for us daily for years to come.  Even the former President, who apparently does not believe he ought to have to follow the footsteps of all the other past Presidents, has begun his best effort to derail the conservatives and we can be assured that he and his cronies will continue down this path.

There needs be a certain sanity to our immigration rules.  We cannot take everybody and there are those in the mix whom we do not want to admit to our country and feed, for very valid reasons, to use my bird feeder analogy.  We have enough of a mess now; we do not need to knowingly add to those issues.

Cockamamie Ideas…

An interesting word that basically means: ridiculous, pointless, or nonsensical: full of wild schemes and cockamamie ideas.

There are good ideas, great ideas, poor ideas and cockamamie ideas.  If we live long enough, and if we pay attention to enough different sources, we’ll be conversant with this word.  There are people in our Congress who have a knack for the pronouncement of cockamamie ideas with the straightest face we’ve ever seen.  Some of those ideas come from backbenchers who simply strive to be noticed, and some come from veterans who really don’t need to resort to such things to attract notice.  They already garner sufficient facetime before the cameras to be noticed.

Some of those who garner sufficient time in office and before cameras actually would be doing themselves a favor to avoid that spot since they sound, and even look like they are wigged out as they prattle on to fill the requisite 45 to 60 seconds of face time.  This is intended to prove to the “the folks back home” that they are performing yeoman’s duty while in D.C.  Always working hard; always recognizing the interest of their constituents…at least until the bright light is off them and they can get on with the partying of the evening.

Cockamamie ideas are not the province of only politicians on the national stage; we see more than enough evidence of that on the various state stages around the country.  In some cases, this look gets down to community and county levels when opportunities for facetime make their presence known.  Some simply cannot avoid an opportunity for face time; it seems a genetic thing that, much like flies around a light on a dark night, causes the person to swarm toward those hot lights which mean there must be a TV camera somewhere.

Those who feel compelled to be seen over and over again might do themselves a favor if they’d step back, take a deep breath or two, and go the other way.  The act of giving a response to a question without having had the chance to mentally ‘respond’ to that question several times is almost always less effective than had been hoped for by the individual drawn to that bright light.  These are the moments that can break careers, especially careers that rely upon the support of the public.

Not all the ideas that get ‘blown up’ in such situations were bad ideas.  Had better thought been given to the presentation of the idea, it might’ve gone further; or, more thought might’ve produced the use of a better phrase or a more appealing name for the idea that could make all the difference in the outcome.

Given that potential, we begin to see that ideas don’t always have to be good in order to gain speed legislatively.  And, we see that packaging of ideas can make all the difference in the world as to the outcome.  And therein lies the danger that we could be romanced by a name and find ourselves in bed the next session with an ugly wretch of a bill with a wart on its nose that is a real turn-off.

The moral of this story, if there is a moral, is simple:  do not think everything that sounds good is really going to be good; that is especially true in politics and we seem destined to have to prove that to ourselves over and again.  We can sure make use of this filter system at the time of our vote in political races.  If the candidate sounds too good, too smooth, too self-assured, maybe we ought to step back and watch a bit.  If the candidate is not polished to a high shine, and if he or she doesn’t use a $5.00 word when a $0.50 word will do just as well, it might be that you’ve found that diamond-in-the-rough that needs some experience but is worth trusting even so since honesty and integrity outweighs appearance and brilliance many times over.

Be on the lookout for cockamamie ideas.  We’ve all seen and heard them, so recognizing that only requires that we listen and watch very carefully and closely.  A casual conversation can usually tell us if we’re talking with a liberal or a conservative…and a few more minutes can help to confirm we’ve found a real conservative, not just a poseur who knows the right words.

Take your time.  “True conservative” lasts forever while cockamamie also lasts a long time but does a lot of damage in the process of eventually being discovered and vetted.