With all the worries about deflation and inflation floating around at the same time, which seems pretty oxymoronic, we are proud that the price of the jewels of wisdom remain the same. Thanks, Blackie and here we go:
The recent appearance of the US ambassador at the Hiroshima Peace Day to mark the 65th anniversary of the Atom bomb drop there seems particularly ironic to many older folks. One would think that we would have wanted to send as our representatives the handful of survivors still living from the Bataan Death March or the survivors of the Jap prison camp at Cabanatuan for the ceremony. At least that might have put matters in a little better perspective. Much as some may try to rewrite history actual facts are a stubborn thing as Reagan observed.
It is interesting the way we react and over-react to the current events of the day because of the immediacy of communications. Every event gets blown out of proportion. Those fires, heat and drought in Western Russia are a bad thing, but they and the world will survive them. Mother Nature will return to balance as she always does sooner or later, on her clock, not ours. Five centuries ago when a similar event might have occurred no one would have known about it. Only rumors and travelers tales would have carried the news and the reporting would have been sketchy at best but they wouldn’t have suffered the anxiety we thrust upon ourselves with hyperventilating news accounts.
While western Russia burns and fries in the heat, Northwestern China which is a very arid desert area bigger even than the great deserts of the US southwest are getting drenched with rains and floods. Meanwhile the ice caps in Antarctica have grown the last couple of years. Go figure.
Kids have these new-fangled skate boards they use all the time. Seems as though they have fun with them. Does anyone make their own scooter anymore? We used to take a 2×4 and a pair of all worn-out skates and knock the couplings off the top of the skate and then screw them into the board. You attach another 2×4 to the base and viola, you have a home-made scooter. They weren’t very sturdy and constantly bent or broke and were “in the shop” for repairs as much as we used them but they were fun and our dads were always proud of us for making something with our own hands even if wobbly and ugly. At least it didn’t come out of a box with instructions written by a Chinese interpreter.
Next time you glance into your rear-view mirror you might want to know where the idea originated. It is attributed to Eddie Rickenbacker. He was a famous race car driver in the early days before WWI. To improve his odds and know when to manoeuver he rigged up a mirror so he could see the race cars coming up behind him. The idea became a hit. Later he was our most famous Ace in WWI when he learned to fly. After that he was President for years of Eastern Airlines and was as survivor of a plane crash in the Pacific during WWII while on an evaluation trip for the Army. He and thirteen others out of 14 survived about two weeks in a small life boat with minimal water and food before rescue
Non- students of the Bible and dilettante philosophers often refer to Solomon when they make comments about the benefits and usefulness of wisdom. What most of them ignore and forget is that it was a gift from God. Solomon may have been born with potential but when God asked him what he wanted, just like a Genie out of the bottle, Solomon did not ask for riches or power or glory, he asked for wisdom. God granted his wish. It is a telling episode and worth pondering. You can read the whole story yourself in II Chronicles.
Too much credit and too easy credit got us into our current financial mess. We did it to ourselves. It is amazing how folks don’t like to take personal responsibility for anything. I know the litany about how it was all Wall Streets fault. My response is hogwash. Wall Street can only sell and market what the people are willing to buy. I doubt anyone had a gun to their head when they took out one of those subprime loans for no money down, or refinanced to get 40 grand from their home equity to buy new cars and plasma screen tvs, or ran up 20 grand on their credit cards for trips to Vegas and pools in the back yard.
Walter Reuther of UAW fame most be smiling from his grave. His group finally got their utopia. The union and their co-conspirators in Washington own the company and the taxpayers are on the hook to feed the beast until the revolution comes. Weird, but today if you really want to buy American then buy Ford or even Toyota. Of course you can celebrate with a Volt if you want and on a hot day with the air conditioner and in heavy traffic maybe get only 20 miles before the mandatory over night re-charge limit. Check it out. The advertised 40 miles is really only in ideal conditions. Good luck with that.
It is that time of year for the Perseid meteor shower again. Just like the returning geese it is always comforting to know that the grand things in life continue on regardless of our petty concerns of the day. Compared to Mother Nature and God’s grand scheme they do seem petty.
Next time your hear someone talk about how the Founding Fathers were all Deist and indifferent about religion and Christianity you might wish to recall that Jefferson did his own translation of the Gospels in Greek and Latin. When he was President he signed his official documents “in the Year of our Lord, Christ 18__”. I don’t pretend to know the depth of his religious convictions but I have no doubt he held them and believed them important for himself and the nation.
Is there anything more fun than being a fly on the wall and listening to a three-year old talking to themselves when they are playing with their toys? They can get totally absorbed in the moment. Don’t you wish your fantasies could so intense?
The giant chemical company, Dow Chemical was started by a Canadian American before the turn of the 20th century. He first product was so mundane. He developed the method of extracting Bromine from brine. Who would have thought such humble beginnings would have led to a NYSE colossus. http://www.olcranky.wordpress.com