How can anyone make a priority list on the problems we have and which need to be addressed first? Debt ceiling? Cut Spending? Jobs, Jobs, Jobs? Social Security? Medicare? Medicaid? Immigration? States/Appeals Court Systems? Education and Teacher's Strikes? Class Warfare?
Everything is connected to everything else and each affects the next one in line. We're in campaign mode in Chicago and DC on the Dem side and the Republicans are dancing up a storm. (FYI-my dream team would be Rick Perry/Michelle Bachman which should guarantee 24 years of Republicans in the White House. (I carry it one step further: Michelle puts Rubio on her ticket and he finishes out the first 24 years. After that, you're on your own--since I'm 80 I really don't have a dog in that hunt any later.)
My apologies for skipping a week. Just not enough minutes in the day. We did have a successful program at the Under the Oaks event Wednesday evening and on a really serious side may I make the following observation?
I have been involved with that park since we built and dedicated it in 1987 and have spent much time either in the park or studying its history. However, since the event this year involved more research than any up until now, there came a few moments when I was alone and looked around the area. It occurred to me that the first State Convention comprised of over 3000 participants, delegates and nominees was a truly important piece of history. Many people left their parties for what was certainly a just cause and banded together to form a new political organization. There can be no doubt that some of the boys in Jackson in 1854 had become of age by 1861 and went on to fight for what they believed in and what their parents had instilled in them.
I believe that we can say that this cause was the first time that men and some women went to war to earn the freedom of complete strangers and men, women and children of a different race. We can now look back and weep as we count over 600,000 who never returned to their homes and families and realize that number as being larger than adding together all the fatalities of all wars this country has fought. Jackson, indeed, played a very large part in what has become a 50 state country. You can let your imagination run wild thinking of what may or may not have happened had there been no one to fight a war for individual and equal freedoms and to keep the states together.
A couple of points to ponder:
My brother-in-law in Wisconsin received a call from a union member asking him to support their cause and vote for the union sponsored judge a few weeks ago. During the conversation he learned that the beginning salary of a teacher in Wisconsin is $63,000 plus benefits. He has been retired for a number of years and after telling the caller that he had never made that much in his life, he used a few choice words and hung up. No wonder they did $340,000 worth of damage to the State Capitol. They certainly don't know the value of a dollar.
Did you hear about the Washington Post reporter who "came out of the illegal closet" and admitted that his parents came into this country illegally and brought him with them, of course, so he is one who is strongly in favor of the Dream Act? This guy benefited from all the American education facilities, and now wants not only forgiveness, but wants everyone else to get the same benefits. There are many sets of statistics on the costs of illegals, but I have not seen those that would tell us how many jobs have been taken by illegals and their children which could and should have gone to American citizens. More on this next week.
And another illegal influence. How many of the houses that are now being foreclosed on and are depreciating the value of real estate in their neighborhoods can be laid at their doorstep? In our local newspaper today they have finally come out with an exact number in the 8,000 range.
There is so much for those of us who are able to help others and are relatively secure, but so many problems to be concerned about. Not an easy time to live, is it? The Fourth of July is an upbeat time, but not for everyone.