Thursday, January 31, 2008

Fences...........And A Matter Of Being On Them !!

I would like to think that I am a relatively smart guy and that I can handle a good portion of what is thrown my way (except math) and let me add that I have the best friends....they give me great solid advice. I listen to what is said ,take it in ,process the advice and then try to form opinions on my own.

Having said all that here goes my thoughts on presidential politics today....

For the past couple of months I had tried to decide between Democratic hopefuls who were running for the presidency. I had narrowed my decision down to John Edwards and Hillary Clinton and had finally made the leap and placed my feet firmly on the side of Hillary.

I made the comment at the time that I had decided to come off the fence and make a decision.

I was comfortable in my decision and had already started making plans to campaign for Sen. Clinton. She is smart, articulate, well connected, has a brillant husband who has a little knowledge about running the last superpower on the planet. I think she is highly qualified to be President of the United States. George Bush had been Gov of Texas for less than 8 years when he decided to run for the White House.....but I digress.

Then two things happened.....Sen Ted Kennedy and Caroline Kennedy came out in support of Sen Obama and I read Lukes blog.

I have always had a love affair with the "Camelot" era known as the early 1960's and while some of my friends would have you believe that I actually watched the Kennedy/Nixon debates in 1960 , it was a little before my time.

President Kennedy instilled in us a sense of wonder that flowed over into everything people did.... For the first time in a long time this nation had a leader that made them want new and better things. I remember my Dad talking about watching President Kennedy take his oath of office that cold January day and my dad having the feeling that we could go anywhere with Kennedy leading us. Some historians have said that the ideal, all is gonna be great, era of the 1950s did not actually end until around 1pm on November 22,1963.

President Kennedy had his faults....but show me a man (or women) who does not and I will show you some ocean front property in North Dakota.

Sen Obama does the same thing.....He excites people on a level that I have not seen since 1992 when Bill Clinton ran for the office. I did vote in that election and in fact it was my first.....

I hate to say this cause it paints me as kinda dense but I never put much thought into the idea of 24 YEARS of either a Bush or a Clinton in the White House. Hillary has won nothing yet....but the idea of getting a job because you have a certain name is kinda bad. I will say it again---SHE IS SMART but so is Obama . President Roosevelt ran for and was elected to be president 4 times. Some would say two too many ....I am a HUGE fan of FDR and I think that he ran one too many times.....there should be some type of limits on how many times people can be in the Oval Office as our Commander in Chief...Oh wait there is !! Perhaps the Bush and Clinton Families have finally figured out the loophole.

These are the things people have said to me over the last week concerning a black man being elected president.

  • Once a muslim always a muslim.

  • I am worried that someone might take a shot at him...try to kill him.

  • Can you imagine the country we will live in once a darky is elected .

  • He has absolutly no experiance.

Sen Obama can lead, I have no doubt about it.....the fact that he is a black man does not concern me in the slightest bit,even if he was a muslim should that matter? Show me in the US Constitutuion where it says " Hey , remember ya gotta be white, own land and attend a protestant church to be president" Some fool might decide to try and kill him for no other reason than he is black ....I am sure Sen Obama has given this some serious thought, has discussed it with his family and they know the risks. Perhaps serving his country is something that warrents those risks in his eyes....He is the first black man to run for president and not make race an issue . He knows it is a very divisive measure and helps no one in the long run. Run on your merits and the rest will take care of itself.

So....back to those fences........

Come November 4, 2008 we will have a new person elected to lead this nation. The president -elect will have some serious uphill battles to contend with...getting more people to work, helping push a lagging economy into first gear, Ending a war in Iraq, affordable heath care for EVERYONE ,restoring our reputation around the world, getting the US to play a bigger role in helping enviromental issues, equal rights for every person in the US,including gays,latinos,immigrants,blacks....You see my point.

Who should I vote for??

Guess I will know Tuesday

Monday, January 28, 2008

THE LONG GOODBYE............

In less than a year this presidency will fade into the history books. Movers will arrive and pack the belongings of the Bush family, the Oval office will be dismantled down to the bare floor, documents will make the trek to the National Archives. Except the ones that have been shredded!
Who will next make that walk into the House chamber ? The first female as president, the first african-american, the oldest man to ever be sworn in????
Its a crap shoot right now but the main thing is this ....It will not be George W Bush. For the time being we have to spend the next year watching him try and save his presidency in the eyes of the world.....
The next year will be a long good bye for those of us who are ready for change.....we have to suffer gladly until November when we vote for change on some level. Its gonna be an exciting year.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Why Asheville..????

I have had a love affair with Asheville for as long as I can remember ...any of yall know that. This will not be the first blog I have written about Asheville and most likely wont be the last one. I have an idea for a political blog ....but for right now I want to focus on the things of Asheville that I love ..........

  • The Grove Park Inn

  • Biltmore Estate

  • Barleys

  • Patton Avenue

  • Malaprops Bookstore

  • Tupelo Honey Cafe

  • Pack Square

  • Thomas Wolfe

  • Biltmore Village

  • The Noodle Shop

  • Asheville Museum of Art

  • French Broad Brewery

  • The Mast General Store

  • The great people

  • My Family roots

  • They put flowers on your food(see picture above)

  • The Architecture

  • Zambra

  • The Shops on Lexington

  • Hendersonville,Boone,Blowing Rock,Mt Mitchell,Rafting,Hiking,Lake Lure all within an easy drive of downtown Asheville.

  • Fine Arts Theater

  • Bele Chere in July

  • Winter

  • Spring

  • Summer

  • Fall

And many others.......

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

The Low Price Leader.............

Lane wrote an amazing blog the other day and I would strongly recommend that you go read his blog before you read my mindless dribble.....Having said that his blog did inspire to write about something near and dear to my heart---The American Experiance known as retail shopping!!

I go to Wal Mart way to much .....Sometimes a couple of times during any given week. I make lists and try to stick to them but often times I find myself going "CRAP" I forgot something...
So I go back again and again and again. Its not because I like Wal Mart. I dont care for the store at all actually. I understand they they have a huge economic impact on the cities in which they have stores. I understand that alot of folks who would normally not have a job find their way to Wal Mart and employment. But there are TONS of negatives that come when Wal Mart announces that its coming to town.
In 1980 Wal Mart had sales of $1.2 Billion a year....That number had grown to well over $200 Billion by 2006. That is considerably more than the gross domestic products of many nations around the globe.
Much of the money spent in Wal Mart was once spent in different businesses in towns that closed due to Wal Mart coming to town.
Smaller businesses cannot in any way compete with the "low price leader".
Consider this-You can go to Wal Mart early on a Saturday Morning and do the following....Get the oil in your car changed and have new tires put on if you like....You can complete your banking.....You can get your eyes checked....You can fill your monthly prescriptions .....You can shop for weekly groceries....Get a gift for anyone, from a kid to an elderly person.....get your hair cut....get paint for that painting project......stock up on stationary supplies or office at McDonalds or Subway.....have pictures made of the any number of flowers or garden supplies.....The point I make is this -Wal Mart Has become the new downtown.

Wal Mart is amazing in how it can move people to them..... sometimes entire communities build up around them ....Wal Mart will follow housing developments or vice versa.
Post offices have even been known to move to follow them....In Livingston Montana, residents discovered that their downtown post office was closing and moving to a zone of malls on the outside of town. No matter that the post office had been in the center of town sine 1914. The postal service informed the town council on a Tuesday and advertised the sale of the property the next day. That sucks

So what do we do ? I have tried boycotting Wal Mart by going to smaller stores but the sad thing here in Montgomery is this ....There just is not that many left. Carl' Hardware in Eastbook Shopping center closed last fall after being in business for nearly 65 years.
Any ideas you folks might have please feel free to send um my way......

LSMFT....LSMFT....Yes Ladies and Gentleman this is Frank Sinatra and LUCKY STRIKES MEANS FINE TOBACCO!! The coolest smoker of all time!
It would seem that everything I am talking about tonight is based on other folks Blogs. Luke and Jackie have decided to stop smoking and I applaud their decision. I have to say there is a certain flair to smoking....Watch the movie "Good Night and Good Luck", those folks make smoking look COOL me anyway. FDR smoked cigarettes and used a bakelite cigarette holder all the time....My Hero! The click of a Zippo lighter as you light your cigaretter ...ahhhh!!
I told Laura several weeks ago that when she became pregnant I would stop smoking.....well here we are a month after the big revel and I was still smoking .
For me smoking is a nervous habit....I only started after my Dad died last year . I rarely smoked in my house. I NEVER smoked in anyone elses house. I have been going to Bham these past few months for a date and I would not smoke at all going up . I have been off on week long trips and have not smoked ONCE. But you get me home and I know I can do it....then I smoke.
I stopped yesterday. Like Luke said, the main thing is that I will be in better shape in the long health will benefit and I will not stink anymore. I will miss it for a bit and I have issued a request to some to STAY IN MY FACE about this ...but I am done. I wish Luke and Jackie good luck in their journey. I am still gonna carry my Zippo though......
Stay Tuned....

Presidential Politics 2008....
I made this comment Wednesday January 9, 2008. Sen Hillary Clinton will be our next president. I am a supporter.....I had to finally decide between Sen Clinton and John Edwards and while I really do like John Edwards, I had to get off the fence and come down firmly on one side. I made a small contribution to Sen Clintons campaign today and am looking forward to getting more involved ....

The Weekend...
We have a long weekend coming up with the annual Youth Winter Retreat.....maybe some pictures on Monday .

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Baby,Its Cold Outside.........

A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs who, however, has never learned how to walk forward.
Franklin D. Roosevelt

Let me get this outta the way first and formost ....I am glad its cold.....I am glad that you need to wear a jacket when you run outside to get something. I know there are folks sitting there saying that this aint cold . Well, I dont care where you are from ...when its 17degrees at night and barely 35 during the day ...thats cold.
Remember we had 14 days of 100+ degree weather back in August of 2007. You will NEVER hear me complain of the cold weather .....allow me to please enjoy it while it lasts....Most likely we will be in shorts by the weekend . BLAH

Happy New Year to everyone out there in blogland. The holiday season was VERY busy and while I was not able to see all my great friends,everyone was on my mind and in my prayers.
I really think that 2008 is going to be a banner year for everyone. So many exciting things going friends have some big things going on in their lives....and I am very excited to be along with them,in a small way , as they head down this fantastic path.
This is election year in our great nationand we will be electing a new President in November. We will also be having mid term elections for many seats in Congress and if things turn out good for us then the Democrats will increase their majority in the US Congress.
If the election were held today and I had to cast a vote I would vote for John Edwards.
Some folks are excited about Ron Paul. I am not . He seems to be all talk. We will see I guess.....

LOST finally returns on January 31. I am so freaking excited for this show to be back.....The writers strike might cut the show short but for now I think the producers have about 10-11 shows in the bag . That is enough for me right now ....SO EXCITED!
I recently read a pretty good book entitled REALITYLAND....Its a behind the scenes look at Walt Disney World. While the writing is not on the same level as Dickens or Hemmingway it does give a pretty cool view of how the parks were bulit in Central Florida. It also is a nice look at how the parks are run on a day to day basis.

As I mentioned before I will be going to Alaska later in the year. I am also going to North Carolina in two weeks for a long weekend. With any luck I will get to go a couple times this year to beautiful Western North Carolina.

Peace and Love to each and everyone of you.