ivman's blague rotating header image loading ... please wait....

Posts Tagged ‘politics’

How Good Is Your Memory?

The other evening when we had several couples over for dinner, we had a lot of laughs around the table all evening. We were all especially amused at one of the exchanges in particular. When I said that I didn't remember that our elderly guests had lived in a certain place in the past, the wife said to her husband, "Honey, do I remember that?" We were all very amused at her remark, and fortunately she laughed right along with the rest of us. I'm sure, though, that it can't be fun to struggle more and more with memory in the aging process. I have enough problems with memory already. 🙂

You long-time readers know that I usually steer away from most things political on my blog. But I'm going to start this post off with some heavier stuff than usual because there's something that's really bothering me. Please stick with me before skipping on to the lighter stuff at the end.

Next week we have our national elections, along with local and state issues as well. I have become increasingly disturbed at the dishonesty of the present administration. Many/most politicians are known to bend, spindle, and even mutilate the truth, but lately distortion has grown to epic proportions. And I'm going to mention an issue I'd like you to remember as you cast your votes. There are those who don't want us to remember certain facts, or even to know about them in the first place.

If the only news you get comes through the major media outlets, you probably do not even know that, for over a month, there has been a cover up by the Obama administration as they have knowingly and continually lied to the American people about what happened in the attack and deaths of four Americans in Benghazi, Libya. The mainstream media (MSM) is complicit in the cover up, knowing that by reporting the real news, the guy for whom they're totally in the tank will be seen for what he really is. If you are unaware of some of the news from Benghazi, check out alternative news sources available online. A good place to start is this post on PowerLine blog. The blog post quotes in totality an article published by Mark Steyn. Some of the language in his article is not for the faint of heart as Steyn quotes VP Joe Biden's incredible remarks to the father of one of the Navy Seals killed in the terrorist attack.

The media, long-known for its liberal bias, had no qualms about trying to derail the re-election of an incumbent president at almost exactly this same point in the 2004 campaign, with the obvious intent of trying to make the Bush administration look bad. Yet the MSM do not report genuine, current matters of national security that could help voters decide if they want four more years of this. There has been all kinds of news that the MSM has chosen to withhold during the last four years — news that would have looped endlessly if a conservative were the president. I find such dereliction of duty pathetic.

Will Rogers said, "The short memories of American voters is what keeps our politicians in office." I hope as we go into the polling places next week that we will remember broken promises. I was able to find a news outlet that listed the broken promises Obama made in the 2008 election — http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/promises/obameter/rulings/promise-broken Obama doesn't want you to remember that he has a record that he must run from rather than on.

Now on to the lighter side of faulty memories....
Click here to continue reading this post ⇒

Print This Post Print This Post
E-mail this post to a friend
Share this post on Facebook

Election Time Ironies

With elections coming in less than four weeks from now, I thought I'd share a few things my readers have sent me that highlight several election time ironies. (Are any of the rest of you, like me, more than ready for the end of this year's campaigning?!)

Two readers in Ohio have sent me campaign posters for a man who is running for sheriff in their county. Here's one of the signs that shows the irony of this candidate's name:

Here's another campaign poster for the same candidate.
Click here to continue reading this post ⇒

Print This Post Print This Post
E-mail this post to a friend
Share this post on Facebook

Comedy in the News

picture of comedy mask

It's no surprise that I enjoy comedy. I seem to be able to find humor in even the most somber of situations. Humor is just a part of my life, including in my teaching ... just ask my students. As serious as the news is these days, it's unusual to find anything remotely funny. So it's been shocking to me to encounter a couple of news items in the past several weeks related to some aspect of comedy.

When I went to Google on the morning of September 30, I learned that it was the fiftieth anniversary of the Flintstones. The original series ran until April 1, 1966. Since then there have been quite a few spin-off series and holiday specials. Here's a picture of the Flintstones (Fred, Wilma, and Pebbles) and the Rubbles (Barney, Betty, and Bamm-Bamm).
Click here to continue reading this post ⇒

Print This Post Print This Post
E-mail this post to a friend
Share this post on Facebook

No Child Left Behind Football

picture of bill signing

This evening, in honor of presidents past and present trying to influence education and of Ted Kennedy, the one who "shepherded" the "bipartisan" No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) through the Senate, I am posting a parody, author unknown. What I'm posting below has made the rounds often by e-mail and on forums and blogs, but it just seemed to be crying out to become a permanent part of my blog archives at this time in our nation's history and here at the beginning of football season.

I read online the transcript of Obama's speech today to school children. I think it's probably vastly different from what he had planned to say before so many parents expressed their concerns about his agenda in doing this speech. He said some very good things that leave me wondering, based on his policies, if he actually believes much of what he said.

picture of banging head on a brick wall

Our son Mark and his wife Katie are teachers in the public school system where they have to deal with the repercussions of NCLB and governmental demands almost on a daily basis and face the frustration of having to spend so much time on peripherals that they often don't have adequate time to do the course preparations they would like to or cover the material that they need to.

If the demands of NCLB were placed on the game of football, here's what it would look like.

No Child Left Behind Football

picture of football goal

1. All teams must make the state playoffs and all MUST win the championship. If a team does not win the championship, they will be on probation until they are the champions, and coaches will be held accountable. If after two years they have not won the championship their footballs and equipment will be taken away UNTIL they do win the championship.

2. All kids will be expected to have the same football skills at the same time, even if they do not have the same conditions or opportunities to practice on their own. NO exceptions will be made for lack of interest in football, a desire to perform athletically, or genetic abilities or disabilities. ALL KIDS WILL PLAY FOOTBALL AT A PROFICIENT LEVEL!

3. Talented players will be asked to workout on their own, without instruction. This is because the coaches will be using all their instructional time with the athletes who aren't interested in football, have limited athletic ability or whose parents don't like football.

4. Games will be played year round, but statistics will be kept only in the 4th, 8th, and 11th game. This will create a New Age of Sports where every school is expected to have the same level of talent and all teams will reach the same minimum goals.

If no child gets ahead, then no child gets left behind.


I know that there are probably as many proponents of NCLB as there are detractors. Do any of you readers have any personal insights to add? Any thoughts on Obama's talk with our nation's school children today?


"The repetition of small efforts will accomplish more than the occasional use of great talents." - Charles H. Spurgeon

=^..^= =^..^=

Everybody repeat after me... "We are all individuals."

Print This Post Print This Post
E-mail this post to a friend
Share this post on Facebook

Tupperware and Obamacare

picture of Tupperware banana storage

Do you like Tupperware? We do, and we're still using most of the Tupperware we received as shower gifts over 30 years ago! Several months ago when we had German house guests, for some reason we talked about Tupperware. They told us about some of the items available through Tupperware in Germany that we don't see here. This week they sent us a package through a mutual friend coming back from Europe. In addition to some German coffee (mmm!), there was a German Tupperware catalog. I looked online to see if it were also available there. If you'd like to check it out, you can go to tupperware.de One of the items available is called Banana Joe (picture above). I don't think it would keep a banana fresh. Is it for protecting the banana from bruises in your lunch bag?

Here's a little Tupperware story from my files:

What's A Tupperware Party? (author unknown)

One evening after dinner, my five-year-old son Eli noticed that his mother had gone out. In answer to his questions, I told him, "Mommy is at a Tupperware party." This explanation satisfied him for only a moment.

Puzzled, he asked, "What's a Tupperware party, Dad?"

I figured a simple explanation would be the best approach. "Well, Eli, " I said, "at a Tupperware party, a bunch of ladies sit around and sell plastic bowls to each other." Eli nodded, indicating that he understood this curious pastime. Then he burst into laughter.

"Come on, Dad," he said. "What is it really?"


Tupperware is known for "locking in freshness." To me, much of what has been happening in our nation's capital this year is anything but "fresh," and instead our leaders are locking out freshness, in favor of old ideas (ideologies) that have failed for others. For some reason they believe they can make these ideas work for them, and that the others failed simply because they didn't run things right. The French have a saying, "Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose." = The more things change, the more they stay the same. It reminds me of the following:

The evolution of medicine...

What doctors through history have said in reply to "Doctor, I'm in pain":

2000 B.C. - "Here, eat this root."
1000 B.C. - "That root is heathen; say this prayer."
1850 A.D. - "That prayer is superstition; drink this potion."
1940 A.D. - "That potion is snake oil; swallow this pill."
1985 A.D. - "That pill is ineffective; take this antibiotic."
2009 A.D. - "That antibiotic is artificial. Here, eat this root!"

The redistribution of wealth that is happening fast and furiously is nothing new. It's the ancient rob Peter to pay Paul thing ... especially knowing that it's a pretty sure way to get Paul to vote for you.

picture of bailouts

Our leaders' answer to economic hard times is to spend money we don't have, at unthinkable rates and in incomprehensible amounts. Being a language guy, I readily admit that economics is not my strong suit. But I know better than to borrow exorbitant sums of money that I would not be able to pay off in three lifetimes. Duh, you don't get out of debt by spending! Our government's answer to everything is to throw money we don't have at whatever problem and non-problem that comes along. My mind goes to the Stimulus Package(s), the Cash for Clunkers debacle, etc. We are seeing only half of the campaign promises fulfilled — we're seeing massive change, but little to no hope.

picture of flow chart

The push to get the Health Care Plan (a.k.a. Obamacare) through as quickly as possible, without even knowing what all is in it seems to me unwise at best. It's kind of like the definition of Tupperware party up above, but in this case our lawmakers aren't sitting around trying to sell bowls to each other, but rather trying to sell each other on a plan that could move our nation one giant step closer to bankruptcy. Come on, Congress-critters, do you really know what Obamacare is?! A reader sent me one version of the 1,000+ page Health Care Plan. If you'd like to read it, click on this link - HR320.pdf If you do read it, you will be light years ahead the vast majority of our Congressmen who are poised to vote in favor of it. I found a flow chart online that explains how things will work. You can see a larger version by clicking on the thumbnail picture of it above.

The textbook we use in our first three semesters of French here at the university tells us that France has an excellent health care system. But I've heard otherwise from some people. My dentist here in Greenville has quite a few patients who are Michelin employees living in the US for several years. Some of these patients have come in in great pain. When the dentist checked them out, he discovered that they have decay under their fillings. Upon further investigation he learned in each case that the dentists in France don't use novocaine to numb people up before drilling. They drill until the person can stand it no longer, and then put in the filling, sometimes on top of decay.

Friends who lived in France for a while told us that their four-year-old daughter fell in their yard one day and had a huge gash in her chin. When they couldn't get it to stop bleeding, they took her to the emergency room. The personnel cleaned it up and said that she would need stitches. The gave the mother a bed sheet, told her to wrap it around her little girl and to hold her still while they stitched it up. Apparently novocaine is something that socialized medicine can't waste money on. Barbaric, huh?

I have heard some say that if Obamacare goes through, we will end up with a system with the compassion of the IRS and the efficiency of the US Postal System. We've been reminded in the past two weeks by the Cash for Clunkers program that people still flock in hoards to freebies. Won't they do the same with "free" health care? How is the government in charge of Medicare and Medicaid on the verge of collapse going to manage an even bigger system?

Just this week a reader told me about her recent visit to her doctor here in USA. I asked her if she'd write it up for me to include in this post. She wrote it out and included a humorous side note to me, which I left intact with her permission:

I recently had my annual physical. As a part of the yearly aches-and-pains discussion, my doctor and I talked about my arthritic knees and how much pain is too much pain. The doctor said that if I am ready to discuss joint replacement, I'd better do it now because under Mr. Obama's new health plan, knee replacement coverage would be denied, if not seriously curtailed.

Note to Rob: I wonder if there will be a quota system, e.g.

Me: "Doctor, I'm ready for that right knee surgery."
Doctor: "Rats, you just missed the cutoff for right knees this decade. What about a left hip? Most folks your age learn to adjust to the unusual gait."

It was interesting to me to hear what her doctor had to say about Obamacare. She currently has excellent health care, but that could/would all change. Our government leaders seem to subscribe to Red Green's oft-repeated principle — "If it ain't broke, you're not trying!" They seem to be bent on breaking a health care system that, while not perfect, is the envy of many other countries.

I did a web search to see what other doctors are saying. Here are links to several interesting articles:

Obama Care: Robbing Peter to Pay Paul

Angry Docs Say Proposed Government-Run Health-Care Plan Will Drive Physicians out of Medicine

I usually steer clear of political issues on my blog, but this is such a big issue right now that I wanted to express myself and hear what my readers have to say. I know that the issues are huge and varied and cannot possibly be covered in this blog post. What do you know about and think of Obamacare? Some of you live in countries that have socialized medicine. What are your thoughts about your national health care? Is socialized medicine a fresh idea, or is it something less than fresh, something that's going to get us locked into a big container called Obamacare Tupperware, that we will never be able to get out of? I would love to see a lively, civil discussion of this issue in the comments.


"The taxpayer: That's someone who works for the federal government but doesn't have to take the civil service exam." - Ronald Reagan

=^..^= =^..^=

Anything free is usually worth what you pay for it.

Print This Post Print This Post
E-mail this post to a friend
Share this post on Facebook

Page 1 of 4123...Last »