Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Stockpiling the Pantry

Food riots in other countries have caused some concern here in the U.S. with a couple of big retailers limiting bags of rice. It doesn't seem there will be a rice shortage here in the U.S. Some are saying not to worry about the availability of rice so there is no need to stock up. There are some that say it's time to load the pantry.
Reality: Food prices are already rising here much faster than the returns you are likely to get from keeping your money in a bank or money-market fund. And there are very good reasons to believe prices on the shelves are about to start rising a lot faster.

It appears that food prices are going to keep rising and no one knows when it will end. Sunday, in church, the pastor had every one hold up their wallets/purses and he prayed about the cost of gas and food. I've pray for a person's finances or a particular financial project, but I've never had an entire church hold up and pray over their own wallets. Maybe God are warning us that there is difficult times ahead.

WRMC, Smoke Free and Polluting

I don't like cigarette smoke. I don't like the smell nor the asthma problems I can have because of it. However, I do understand that cigarettes are addictive and it can be very difficult to almost impossible to kick the habit.
In late 2005, Washington Regional Medical Center and the surrounding medical offices became smoke and tobacco free. Smoking was not allow on the premises not even in parking lots. That is why you see smokers sitting or standing on the edge of the sidewalks on all the streets surrounding the hospital and offices.
Most people have been pretty good about picking up their trash and butts, but not all. Well, one could complain about the people who smoking. Me, I would like to know why the hospital and clinics don't put in a designated smoking area. Why not have a place that people can smoke and throw away their trash instead of throwing in on the street, curb and surrounding bushes. In trying to deal with smokers the hospital has caused a new one, pollution.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Courtney Henry, Can We Really Trust Her?

It’s hard to get some answers from the candidates for the Arkansas Court of Appeals. You want to ask questions to discover this person’s character, what their beliefs and principles are without getting into specific issues. Of course, the election of judges is supposed to be nonpartisan, which further complicates questioning. The Court of Appeals doesn’t really address constitutional issues, mostly workman compensation and employment compensation appeals, but it could be the stepping stone up to the Supreme Court.
Still, we want to know if the judges we elect are going to follow and interpret the law or are they going to decide to legislate from the bench. Are they going to protect our freedoms as guaranteed in the Constitution or are they going to eliminate them? It has been the standard practice of liberals, when defeated by voters in the voting booth, to take their issues to court and get them to overturn the will of the voters.
These were the issues on the minds of the people present at the Washington County Republican Women’s forum, this Wednesday. I found it interesting that the candidates for the Court of Appeals, Courtney Henry and Ron Williams didn’t seem to disagree much with each other. The biggest difference between them was the experience. Ron Williams has been working as a lawyer almost as long as Courtney has been alive. He has had significant court experience while she has had none.
There was confrontation at the forum though. It was between Courtney and the moderator Mary Mann. Courtney kept answering questions saying that they were partisan and she couldn’t answer. She was starting to get a little hostile. Mary finally lectured Courtney saying that they were not asking political questions. They were asking questions about her judicial philosophy, was it conservative or liberal. Courtney has presented herself across NW Arkansas as a conservative so it was a bit suspicious that she’d get so confused about the direction of the questions.
Courtney has nothing in her back ground that would suggest that she is conservative. Just because she says so doesn’t make it so. The only thing we have is who she hangs out with and her voting record. Her family is Democratic with strong ties to the Clintons. She voted Democrat in the primary which means she voted for an extreme liberal who’d love nothing more than to have judges legislate from the bench. Based on this I don’t really believe Courtney when she says she’s conservative on judicial issues.
It was apparent by her speech and manner that she has had some training and grooming on how to appear before voters. I believe Courtney has ambitions to higher things then the Court of Appeals. I am not willing to place Courtney on the path to the Supreme Court solely based on her word that she’s a strict constructionist.

Tigger, Truck Model

Most people have a really hot guy or girl drapped over their truck. I've got a cat. Sighhh!

More cats at Friday Ark

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

National Laboratory Week

All this week we are celebrating Laboratory Week at work. The majority of people going to the doctor's office don't realize that most of the blood and tissue go to a laboratory for processing and diagnosis. You never see the technologists that process your specimen and either submit a final diagnosis or pass it on to a pathologist. A lot of specimen processing is done by machines/computers but it's absolutely amazing to realize that there are just some things machines can't do. It takes the eye, knowledge and sometimes intuition of a person to get a result. So when you step into that doctor's office say a silent thank you to all the laboratory professionals behind the scene making sure that your laboratory results are quick and accurate.

More Here

USA, Sam's Club Restricts Rice

I read about Costco limiting rice on the west and east coasts, but I was a bit wary about believing it. Well, it's true, as Sam's Club joins
Costco in limiting rice purchases. While it's mostly people deciding to hoard against future price increases you wonder if maybe you should be doing the same thing. Congress, the President and the Presidential candidates are hell bent on pursuing their disastrous global warming policies so gas and food prices are just going to get a whole lot higher. Sure wish I had a 100 gallon gas tank in the back yard!

Arkansas Home-Schooled Student Finishes Second

Congratulations to Virginia "Ginger" MacFarlan who won 2nd place in the American Legion National Oratorical Competition earlier this month. The title of her oration is: “Our Constitution: Born In Conflict, Nurtured By Debate.” Ginger presented her oration at the Washington County Republican Women's meeting last month. It was absolutely wonderful. If there is any way that you can get her to present it, do it! It gives you a wonderful appreciation of how very special our Constitution is.

Tax Freedom Day!

Today is the day we are now free to enjoy our own money. Americans have earned enough money to pay all their federal, state, and local taxes for the year. Here's a video to celebrate!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Florida, Nutz to You

Florida is attempting to ban the novelty item that I'm sure men are attempting to signal that they have a pair just like them.
The proposal would make displaying bull genitalia reproductions on a vehicle subject to a $60 fine, moving violations and points against a driver license.

I find these things as offensive as nude women on mud flaps and little boys peeing in the wind. I wonder if Florida will make these a violation too. I believe police have better things to look for than some tacky novelty item. You'd think legislators would learn by now not to fool around with a "good old boy's" toy.

Celebrating Earth Day

I enjoy hiking, bird watching, wildflowers and trees. I love nature and abhor the trash that people just throw out. Years ago I considered myself an environmentalist, but not any more. Why? Because environmentalism has become a socio-political movement that seeks to control people. It's no longer about science and being a good steward of the earth. It has become a smokescreen for people wanting to expand government and exercise power. It is now rooted in a disdain for personal freedom and capitalism. Environmentalists are going to be relying on mandates, restrictions and a whole slew of legislation to control people. Environmentalism is the new Marxism.
Anyway, I just had to get that out. But we should celebrate with some humor. Here's George Carlin on Earth Day.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Wal-Mart Women

Well, we may be having a new election focus group that everyone will be watching and commenting on.
Move over, Soccer Moms, there's a new gal in town. Lobb may not know it, but she's part of what looks to be an increasingly crucial demographic in the Presidential election: Wal-Mart Women. These lower-middle-class white women who shop frequently at the discounter are stretched thin and feel increasingly vulnerable.

Of course, these just discovered women are former Republicans who finally smarten up and are going to be voting Democrat. They are following the myth that a Democrat will do better on the economy. Of course the Democrat leadership are hoping that these Wal-Mart Women are too stupid to remember the Democrat's war with Wal-Mart.
Wal-Mart Bashing and Democrats Against Wal-mart
I don't know if Hillary would want to remind people that she sat on Wal-Mart's board of directors and Michelle wouldn't want to brag about her membership on a board of a major supplier to Wal-Mart. There are just too many liberals that hate the supreme leader of capitalism.

Biofuels are Becoming Evil

It wasn’t but a short time ago that biofuels where hailed as that which will save the world. We would be able to use as much fuel as we needed and still protect the earth from green house gases. Ahhh! How things have changed. Biofuels are now being proclaimed as evil and being blasted for creating global food shortages and adding to world wide starvation.
"A conflict (is) emerging between foodstuffs and fuel ... with disastrous social conflicts and dubious environmental results," outgoing Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi told the International Energy Forum here as rising food prices worldwide raise the spectre of famine in some countries.
Venezuelan Energy Minister Rafael Ramirez said that biofuels were having a negligible impact on the oil markets. "But look at the impact (they have) had on food prices. It's madness," he said, adding: "All the countries of Latin America have been hit by the surge in food prices."

I don’t think that the oil producing countries are being very sympathetic either.
Qatari Energy Minister Abdullah bin Hamad al Attiyah said the world would have to choose "what its priority is going to be -- driving or eating."

Meanwhile in the U.S., politicians are falling all over themselves to put in some sort of climate change legislation. All 3 presidential candidates have bought into the global warming fraud and are eager to put in restrictions on coal plants, oil and gas drilling and any activity that they believe would generate green house gases.
I use to admire Newt Gingrich, but now I'm spitting mad at him. He's wimped out on global warming just so he isn't tagged a meany, cold-hearted Republican. The old Newt of the conservative movement have effectively been Newtered.
American today is having a hard time with higher food and gas bills, housing downturns and worries about a recession, but just wait until the President and Congress get finished with their climate change legislation. All I can say is hold onto to your wallets and hope you can hold on to your job, home and car. Look at for your neighbor because a lot of people are going to be going to be needing a helping hand.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Fayetteville, Working Skull Creek

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Wednesday afternoon I joined others with the Sidewalk and Trails Task Force in cleaning up the Skull Creek trail. Most of the clean-up was in the creek rather than the trail itself. I picked up quite a bit of plastic from the stream, mostly shopping bags. One of the more interesting items was the bra and men's underwear. Picking up the trash with a bunch of people is really enjoyable. The day was beautiful and the bank of the stream is actually quite pretty. The violets were blooming profusely in the shaded banks and there were birds flying among the bushes and tree. The Sidewalk and Trails Task Force adopted the trail volunteering to keep it cleaned. Fayetteville Parks and Recreation Division has recently added an Adopt-A-Trail program which is similar to its Adopt-A-Park. Those who are interested should contact the Lisa Netherland, the Adopt-A-Park and Trail coordinator, 444-3471 or e-mail Netherland at Lnetherland @ ci. fayetteville. ar. us. gov.


Eli, Framed

Eli, Framed
Originally uploaded by val
I've had several pictures of the cats in this window from the inside of the house. I was outside pulling weeds from the flower beds when I took this one of Eli. It was cold that morning and Eli decided to supervise from inside the house.

More cats at Friday Ark

Obamanomics Idiocy

The exchange between Charlie Gibson and Sen Obamo regarding capital gains taxes was certainly eye opening. What got into Charlie for actually revealing the truth about taxes?
And in each instance, when the rate dropped, revenues from the tax increased. The government took in more money. And in the 1980s, when the tax was increased to 28 percent, the revenues went down. So why raise it at all, especially given the fact that 100 million people in this country own stock and would be affected?

Hey, he's not suppose to reveal that cutting taxes actually works and benefits millions of working people. Then we have Obama's startling response.
Well, Charlie, what I've said is that I would look at raising the capital gains tax for purposes of fairness.

Obama accepted the low tax/higher revenue premise but he insisted that his Marxist stance of "fairness" trumps fiscal effectiveness. In other words, we need to raise taxes because it would be worth it to stick it to rich people. The problem with Obama's desire to impoverish the rich he would also impoverish ordinary working people. We are putting our money into the stock market too and are also benefiting from the lower capital gains tax. Social Security is not going to be available when we retire and millions of us have been placing any extra money into our retirement programs and it's really important that we get all the tax breaks we can get.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Woof! A Penguin!

Casey and Trixie spotted this penguin while they were on their walk. Mmmm, it's says that there is a reward. Well, they can think of nothing more rewarding than a really big pile of rib bones. Yummy!

Global Warming, Corrupt Science

I'm sure you heard these; "What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun" (Ecclesiastes 1:9) and "those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it". Well, you can tell people haven't been studying history. Trofimko Lysenko is being mentioned in regards to the hoax of global warming. What we have today is the scientific community once again being hijacked by a fraud that could cost millions of lives.
Their comments came amid growing unease over the planting of biofuel crops as food prices rocket and riots against poverty and hunger multiply worldwide.
UN Special Rapporteur for the Right to Food Jean Ziegler told German radio Monday that the production of biofuels is "a crime against humanity" because of its impact on global food prices

For the past 10 years temperatures have at best reached a plateau and a potential cooling phase is expected. Yet European and American Governments are rushing headlong into foolish legislation to control a problem that does not exist. Given the economic devastation that is already happening and which will not doubt worsen as they attempt more global warming legislation, what possible justification can these governments have for pursuing such a destructive path? Maybe there's still hope that real scientists will learn the lesson of Lysenkoism and strive to defeat the people with vested interests in keeping the hoax alive.
In recent months, rising food costs have sparked violent protests in Cameroon, Egypt, Ethiopia, Haiti, Indonesia, Ivory Coast, Madagascar, Mauritania, the Philippines and other countries. In Pakistan and Thailand, troops have been deployed to avoid the seizure of food from fields and warehouses, while price increases fuelled a general strike in Burkina Faso.

I just wonder how many millions of people must starve before the global warming fanatics realize the horrors their deception has caused?

Food Crisis Story

Thursday, April 10, 2008

The Morning Sun

The morning sun has been a rare sight these past few weeks. Last night's storm added another 3 inches of rain. At least I've been lucky not to have been flooded or have any wind damage. Eli is keeping watch, making sure that the kitty across the street doesn't trespass. Bows is contemplating Eli's tail. Tigger is making sure he's out of the way when the fight between Bows and Eli begins.

More cats at Friday Ark

Illegals, Protecting the Criminals

We have the Mayor of LA warning the Feds not to enforce our laws and San Francisco is going to be advertising their status as a sanctuary city. The mayors are expressing their concern for the poor illegals, but who are they really protecting.
but Homeland Security spokeswoman Laura Keehner said the department believes its priorities are correct. She said work-site investigations focus on national security and public safety and that the agency also investigates companies it believes may have committed visa fraud, money laundering, and other violations.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials have since May 2006 conducted raids across the country, including arrests in San Rafael, Oakland, Richmond, San Pablo, Santa Clara and other cities across the Bay area. Immigration officials have said they were executing arrest warrants for immigrants who had committed crimes

In our little area of the world we have a group, Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF) that is crying over those same poor illegals.
A minority rights activ- ists says the 287 (g ) program creates a "tense climate"that has dehumanized illegal immigrants.

Come on! The police in NW Arkansas are not arresting poor, innocent, hardworking, God-fearing victims. The police are fighting well organized, violent gang members.
The charges included attempted capital murder, battery, and weapons, drugs and alcohol offenses.

I am not at all worried about dehumanizing these illegals. They are already dehumanized by committing these offenses. The police in NW Arkansas are working hard to protect people from these criminals. I would love nothing more than to deport these criminals back to Mexico. It's too bad that groups like MALDEF are working so hard to protect these criminals. I think it's time they abandon the dark side and join us in fighting crime and keeping our neighborhoods safe. As for the Mayors of cities like LA and San Francisco, they have pretty much announced to the world that criminals are welcomed in their city and that they have no interest in protecting their citizens from illegal criminals. I am so glad that there are a few cities in NW Arkansas that are willing to get these criminals off our streets and are willing to work with ICE to accomplish it. Those are the cities you'd feel safe living in.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Fayetteville, Botanical Garden Greenhouse

Yesterday I got the opportunity to see the new production greenhouse at the Botanical Garden of the Ozarks. A Ball grant provided the greenhouse and they will continue to supply seeds and plants to the Garden. The greenhouse will give the Garden the opportunity to start and propagate their own plants. Any extra plants could be sold to the public.

The old sidewalk around the Fayetteville Square was dug up and replaced. Do you know where some of that old sidewalk went? Yup, the Garden is using pieces of it to make some walkways. You know, there might be more pieces available for anyone else who wants to piece of the Fayetteville Square.

Just Say Thank You!

Today, in a very moving ceremony, President Bush presented the The Medal of Honor to Michael Anthony Monsoor. Also today, General Petraeus testifies to Congress this week on the progress in Iraq. Wednesday will be the fifth anniversary of the fall of Baghdad. Many young Americans have put their lives on hold and even sacrificed their lives for America. May God be with our Armed Forces and their families always. If you haven't thanked a soldier for their sacrifice here's a simple way to do it.

The Gratitude Campaign

(h/t Gateway Pundit)

Monday, April 07, 2008

What a Weekend!

It was an absolutely gorgeous weekend. The weather was perfect. I started the weekend with a trip to the Farmer's Market. The new sidewalks are really nice. It's a whole lot easier to move through the square. People can talk to the vendors and not block people walking past. The square wasn't completed but the corner planters that were done looked good.

I should have worked in the garden cleaning up the flower beds, but I had to get out. NW Arkansas has had a lot of rain so there are a lot of waterfalls I want to see. I went out to the Wedington Trail. It's a good trail to loosen up those hiking muscles. I stopped for lunch at the underground spring. Casey took the opportunity to take a little dip. While I was out I also pick up some of the geocaches that line the Wedington Trail. They were fairly easy, I didn't have to work hard to find them.

I ended Saturday shopping in Rogers. I caught these balloonists enjoying the last hours of the day. Sunday, I did work in the garden. Whew! I was sore after the hike and bending over the flower beds didn't help much either. I took a big dose of ibuprofen at bedtime.

More dogs at Friday Ark. and canine carnival

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Eli, The Paperweight

I really don't need any help keeping the paper from falling out of the printer.

More cats at Friday Ark

Radio Station of the Year

Congratulations to KLRC for once again being chosen Radio Station of the Year by the Gospel Music Association.
Small Market
KLRC – Fayetteville, AR – Sean Sawatzky, Station Manager

The recipient in each market category was determined by a panel of judges who reviewed the following areas - community involvement, ratings, air check and industry leadership.
The radio stations will be acknowledged during the Dove Awards, to be held April 23, 2008 at the Grand Ole Opry House in Nashville, TN.

Way to go people! You're Great!

Fayetteville, Who's the Bully?

The Northwest Arkansas Times did the job that the NY Times should have done a whole lot better. While the NY Times portrayed Billy Wolfe as the victim and the Fayetteville School District as unfeeling and uncaring, the NWA Times found a different story. The picture emerging isn't quite matching the story the Wolfe's are telling. Oh yes, Billy has taken some hits from students, but Billy, it seems, is very good at bulling himself.
I find it interesting that everyone is taking the school district to task for not protecting Billy better, but my question is why hasn't the school protected the other students from Billy? If what students are saying is true about Billy, isn't there any concern on the school's part that Billy's actions against other students might become more aggressive. It's even more worrisome in that Billy's parents are unwilling to believe that it's their son that causing problems. If I were a parent I'd be concerned that Billy might actually come to school with a weapon and begin killing people.
In any case, the Wolf's use of national publicity isn't working well for them. In the past students have avoided Billy to escape his taunting, now I bet they avoid him like he has the plague. I wonder, has any one the courage to be his friend?

Border Changes

Getting the US-Mexico border straighten once and for all. Hmmm, when did Mexico invade the U.S.?

An Absolut Toast:
Here's to Robert Frost,

Another Cup of Coffee, Brain Protection

Brew up another pot! One of my favorite beverages may be good for my brain and I tell you, I need all the help I can get!
Coffee may cut the risk of dementia by blocking the damage cholesterol can inflict on the body, research suggests.

Oh shoot, the study is being done on rabbits. Rabbits drink coffee? Well, one can hope that the same process that works in rabbits works in humans. Hmmm, better not take chances. Excuse me, I going for another cup.


Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Fayetteville, In The Center Ring!

Former Arkansas Attorney General Steve Clark is contemplating running for Mayor of Fayetteville. The Northwest Arkansas Times is salivating at that possibility.
One thing's for sure: The lackluster mayoral race we've seen so far got a dose of excitement with Clark's notion of running. His decision to run will certainly make it all very, very interesting.

Yeah, you got to admit that Mr. Clark's candidacy would bring a more carnival atmosphere to the election. It'll give the newspaper writers and editors something new and exciting to write about. Hey, I think it's time for a poll to see how many people would want Mr. Clark to run!

Government Bailout, Taxpayer Burden

Finance is mostly a mystery to me, it's not one of my strong points. I'm always happy when I find an article that clearly explains an issue. David Freddoso has done a really good job explaining what went down on the federal bailout of Bear Stearns. It just makes me sick that when corporations make really bad decisions the taxpayer is suppose to pony up and bail out the company.
The ones being rescued are Bear’s bond-holders. They keep their shirts. The stockholders at least keep their socks. The profits from the good times are retained, and the losses are socialized.

There are many businesses in Fayetteville that have failed and never has the Federal government rode up on a white horse and saved them. Why should large corporations get saved.
The taxpayers’ involuntary generosity also benefits the other large institutional holders of mortgage-backed securities. For these, the bailout holds forth hope that the government will someday be there to save them from the free market as well. But can it save everyone?

Does this mean that companies are going to feel free to make bad and risky decisions because the government is going to bail them out?

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

A Rainy Weekend

I realized that I was not going to have the weekend I planned when I got a phone call as I was leaving work Friday. It was from my aunt and uncle from Minnesota. It seems they were a few miles away and they wanted direction to my house. Oh crap! The house is a freaking mess! I broke all speed records getting home. They haven't shown up yet so I started to put things away. I kept cleaning up until I realize they should have been here by now, what happened? Sure enough, they called and they were still lost. They turn right when they should have turned left. Whew! I have more time to clean up! Well, we had a nice visit. They were on their way south and just stopped to spend the night and have a quick visit.
All the rain this weekend put a kibosh on my gardening plans. I did manage to pick up a few geocaches around town while I was running errands Saturday. I'm starting to learn how really mean and sneaky some people can be when they hide caches.

Congress Continues to Blame Big Oil, Ignores Own Stupidity

Once again Congress had dragged in the oil executives for a bashing.
"On April Fool's Day, the biggest joke of all is being played on American families by Big Oil," Rep. Edward Markey, D-Mass., said, aiming his remarks at the five executives sitting shoulder-to-shoulder in a congressional hearing room.

No, Rep Markey, the biggest April Fool is you and the rest of your colleagues who grandstand about gas prices. Gas prices are high because of the incompetence and the lack of balls on the part of Congress. Instead of making the oil companies easy targets for your socialist demagogues, how about overturning the asinine legislative barriers Congress has enacted to cripple American's energy requirements?
Gas prices are affected by refining capacity and the price of crude. We need more domestic oil production, new refineries, fewer blends of gasoline, and less ethanol. The current situation seems like a perfect storm in which several fronts collide to produce a monstrous storm. We have substantial restrictions on domestic oil exploration, restrictions on refinery expansion, mandates for massive amounts of biofuel, and costly new regulation on emissions.
The profit margins for Exxon Mobil(10.0%), ConocoPhillips (6.1%), and Chevron (8.5%) are excessive according to Congress. Lets see we have Microsoft (29+%), Cisco (21+%), Johnson & Johnson (17.3%), Procter & Gamble (14%), 3M (16.7%), General Electric (13%), Anheuser-Busch (12.7%), Coca-Cola (19.8%) and even McDonald’s profit margin (10.5%) is a little better than the oil companies. Why isn't Congress hauling them up to the Capital?
Of course the government makes far more money per gallon of gasoline than the oil companies without lifting a finger to find, transport, refine, etc., it into a useful product. How about reducing gasoline taxes. Congressman?