Curtis Dahlgren
A memo to true "independents" from
By Curtis Dahlgren
July 25, 2009

"There is more of the fool in human nature than of the wise . . . It is a strange desire to seek power and to lose liberty . . . There is a superstition in avoiding superstition." — Francis Bacon (1561-1626)

THE WEEK THAT WAS: Nashville, Tennessee reached a record low on July 21, 2009 (a low not seen there since Rutherford. B. Hayes was President). Someone somewhere is trying to tell Al Gore something. Up here in the U.P. of Michigan, it was just another week in Paradise, with high temps at 72 degrees inside and out (the only A.C. I ever use is "Air Canada").

I saw a turkey mother herding a humongous number of chicks, and I was stared at by a doe-eyed doe the other day as I drove along the road. And this morning, I was stared at by a bald eagle across the river. "Are you looking at me?" he seemed to say before flying off.

A few days ago I got to watch a male sandhill crane doing a mating dance across the river. His mate was following him around like a silly goose. I'll have to try the dance the next chance I get, as I've been single most of my life. Oh — and Columbus' "Nina" and "Pinta" came sailing up my river this week — not actually past my house, but far enough up the mouth of the river to dock in Marinette.

FYI, these replicas will soon be sailing down the Chicago, Illinois, and Mississippi Rivers and up the Ohio, and they're worth seeing — once in a lifetime! You might even get to be a volunteer crew member if you like (one of them is an 82-year-old lady who's been a member of the crew for nine years).

It was a bad month for the "Packers." Bret Favre is still toying with a comeback with the Vikings, and as for meat packers, there were several news items. The Patrick Cudahy plant suffered a $50 million fire due to 4th of July "fireworks," and a whole square mile had to be evacuated. Then the Wienermobile crashed into a house in Wisconsin, and Oscar Mayer III died at age 95. I once trimmed trees for them on a very hot day (40 years ago) and his wife was going to invite us in to eat lunch in the house, though she couldn't find us in a corner of the estate.

Sidebar comment: The nicest people I've ever met were "the very rich." I've done arborist work at two houses designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, for several Fortune 500 CEOs, plus Adlai Stevenson's sister, and so on, and have never had a bad experience with any of them — though I've gotten a lot of grief from the rabble.

Sorry about the rambling, but some of my best columns result from "rambling" (I prefer to call it multi-tasking). As for crazy headlines in the news outside the U.P., it was a bumper harvest this week. While Jimmie Carter was "shocked" by the invasion of Afghanistan by the USSR, this week our President was "shocked" by the arrest of a Harvard professor (never mind the bombings of two American hotels in Indonesia by Islamic "extremists").

Both of these incidents are serious, and people need to cool it regarding the supposedly "racial" one in Cambridge, Massachusetts. If it makes anyone feel better, I know a white guy who was arrested at his home on "stupid" charges and taken to jail without any shoes on. And unlike the professor who had charges dropped immediately, the white guy had to spend a grand in legal fees to get the stupid charges dismissed (he's one of those pro-constitution, pro-lifers that Homeland Security is on the "look out" for).

The President needs to cool it, the professor certainly needs to cool it, and so do the Police unions. To imply that the police can do no wrong would be a tactical mistake on their part, but as for the President:

Seeing evidently that he can do nothing about terrorism in Indonesia, or missing American soldiers, he seems to be preoccupied with smaller things, such as the non-existent health care "crisis."

Now I have no health insurance or money in my bank account, but I was able this year to access the services of both a dermatologist and an eye-ear-nose-and-throat doctor. I got a discount for paying one bill on the spot, and am making payments on the other bills, including a biopsy — the cost of which has been blown out of proportion by the Democrats' favorite special interest group, the trial lawyers (you notice that tort reform can be found nowhere in the 1,000 page "HELLthcare Reform" bills).

Say, who writes that stuff anyway? They keep coming out with these 1,000 page documents of mumbo-jumbo every 2 or 3 weeks, and yet no one even knows who these guys or gals are (I wonder if para-leGAL is a sexist term?). The "law makers" certainly don't READ the stuff, so we know for a fact that they don't WRITE the stuff!

Ironically, while there's no tort reform in the stuff, there is "mandatory counseling" for end-of-life "issues" for the elderly, tax dollars to pay for abortion, and a phasing out of private insurance companies from participating in the "health" industry in any way whatsoever. The nanny state — BIG SIS — could soon have its hands around your throat if you are beyond the statistical "average" age of life expectancy (this is why the Terri Schindler case was so relevant to your own life)!

I think that the secular "humanist" Liberals are projecting their own fear of death on the rest of us, most of whom have no fear of death whatsoever. Mandatory "counseling" will undoubtedly be focused on the need to move on, shove off, bug out, or otherwise submit to the "advice" of the "Medical Advisory Council" that the President wants to impose on us (he has also proposed "mandatory volunteerism" for the young, by the way).

But what if you're 78 like my brother and still working for Habitat For Humanity, etc. and would need a hip replacement at age 80 or beyond? Lotsaluck under FedMed HELLthcare!

In four days I'll be 67, and am still climbing trees and roofs. Suppose, God forbid, that I take a spill after the statistical age of "life expectancy" and am in a temporary coma; I would rather have any decisions about ending my life be in God's hands rather than a computer somewhere in the bowels of Washington DC! President Obama actually said that it would be too "subjective" to take into account a person's "spirit" in decision-making. You can be sure that although the bureaucracy is going to be huge and costly, there won't be enough bureaucrats to look at each person's "end-of-life" decisions on a case-by-case basis — meaning that your fate would be decided by a computer.

You will be simply a NUMBER and that computer will be your KING.

BY THE WAY — another thing that that computer won't take into account is the amount of your faith in God. Statistically, believers in God are healthier and live longer (look at Utah), but that could all change if crazy Uncle Sam takes over all decisions, and your local doctor isn't "authorized" by the computer to provide life-saving treatments. I know people of all ages who have experienced miraculous healings, but in Uncle Sam's sci-world, miracles "don't compute"! Like I said, you're just a number, whether God wants to save you or not.

CONCLUSION — Francis Bacon said:

"Laws are like cobwebs; where the small flies are caught, and the great break through."

In other words, while you peons will be subject to a one-size-fits-all HELLthcare, Senators and Congresspeople will have a Cadillac plan with no questions asked about extended care or "heroic measures." Members of Congress are not considered "useless eaters" like the common people of Generation X. If, as Phil Gramm used to say, there are "too many people in the wagon and not enough people pulling the wagon," the obvious Nanny State solution will be to "eliminate" some of the people in the wagon by rationing the HELLthcare (I'm not telling you anything you didn't already know). BUT:

You as an individual are part of the solution. We need to stop talking to each other and start communicating with our other "independent" neighbors and friends — there are more "conservative Democrats" out there than the Gang of Four from Chicago ever imagined. The President plays his cards close to his vest, and hides his feelings, but I think some of his anger over the delay in taking over HELLthcare spilled out in his comments about the Harvard professor's "arrest."

You can help make a "difference" just by clicking on "forward" and "SEND" on good information and commentary when you find it. Gold is where you find it, and so are gems of wisdom. My nomination for column-of-the-week is by Tim Dunkin ("Why moral conservatism is indispensable to liberty"). Here's an excerpt:

"[It's] not surprising that the government has become so much more blatant in the past few decades in overreaching from its constitutional boundaries. In some sense, it has had to, just to keep some semblance of order in America.

"As Adams said, when men won't self-govern, then they'll be governed by an external force which cannot be provided under a strictly constitutional system . . . Conservatives need to begin making the case for WHY traditional morality is important. We need to understand that appeals to 'tradition' alone, the argument that we need traditional morals because 'we've always had them' won't wash . . .

"Lose morality, and you will sooner or later lose liberty. Without morality, we become less than men, we become herd animals who are controlled, directed, and exploited by the dictatorial governing caste that we accept as our overlords to keep us from destroying ourselves, and to give us the necessities that we become dependent upon them for. Moral fiber and independence go hand-in-hand. So also does enslavement to the passions with enslavement to the government. America is at a cusp right now — we have to choose which way we will go, and soon. Let us, as conservatives, stand up for the truths of conservative, Judeo-Christian morality in our government and in our society. This is not "theocracy," indeed it is just the opposite — it is liberty."

Honorable mention goes to Dennis Prager for "Americans Are Beginning to Understand the Left" —

"There is only one good thing about the Obama administration's attempts to nationalize most health care and to begin to control Americans' energy consumption through cap-and-trade: clarity about the left. These attempts are enabling more and more Americans to understand the thinking and therefore the danger of the left . . .

"The reason the left asks why there is poverty instead of why there is wealth is that the left's preoccupying ideal is equality — not economic growth. And those who are preoccupied with equality are more troubled by wealth than by poverty."

Yogi Berra once said, "You better cut the pizza in four pieces because I'm not hungry enough to eat six." That's analogous to the Left's view of "wealth." To them, the economy is not a living, growing thing, but a static finite thing to be divvied up The golden goose is fair game along with the golden eggs. Equal misery is preferable to unequal prosperity. "Envy never takes a holiday," said Francis Bacon. He also said:

"Fortunes come tumbling into some men's laps." And that's a BAD thing to the Lefties, including our Community Organizer-in-Chief. Rush Limbaugh says that the President does not debate. "He is playing politics with people's lives."

Byron York said to Laura Ingraham that the thing that grates on people is that when he speaks, President Obama is always the teacher, and we are the lowly students. I've always said that public school teachers always look down their noses at other people because they are used to being the smartest people in the room. By this rule, first grade teachers feel the most superior of all, but college professors are in a class by themselves:

"If you can't dazzle 'em with brilliance, baffle 'em with B.S."

PPS: Well, I've just violated my own resolution about writing shorter columns, but I hope you're still with me here. America is too young to die! It was a mere one life span from Jefferson's death to my father's birth, and a lot less than that to the birth of the one grandparent that I got to meet.

A British veteran of World War I just died at the age of 111, which reminds me that I read about a Turk who died in 1934, and who claimed to have been born in 1774. He claimed to have fought against Napoleon in 1799. To me it sounds plausible, and if true, that man was born two years before the Declaration of Independence and died two years after my brother was born. And he lived his life without "universal HELLth coverage" and did it in spite of that.

Or was it because of that? Some things to think about. Until my next column, your homework assignment is to THINK. The life you save may be your OWN.

© Curtis Dahlgren


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Curtis Dahlgren

Curtis Dahlgren is semi-retired in southern Wisconsin, and is the author of "Massey-Harris 101." His career has had some rough similarities to one of his favorite writers, Ferrar Fenton... (more)


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