Who and What is the Happy Warrior

The Happy Warrior is the title of a poem... and yes, I love this poem. I do not wish to be mischaracterized, for the most part poetry is not my bag. I am not an afficionado of literature nor am I a metro-sexual (I despise that term) but a dear friend introduced me to this masterpiece of prose several years ago... it has provided no end of inspiration. The Happy Warrior by William Wordsworth outlines the qualities of a magnificent soul. I aspire to possess even one or two characteristics that "every man in arms should wish to be."

This blog is a representation, in conversational form, of my voyage to wrap my arms around the world in which Mr. Worsdworth's warrior finds happiness.

(Standing disclaimer: Luckily tests of spelling accuracy ended in 4th grade otherwise I would still be in Elementary School. Be forewarned, spelling errors ahead. I subscribe to the wisdom of a great man who said, "I have utmost disdain for a man who can only spell a word one way." -Benjamin Franklin)

Thursday, December 24, 2009

A Christmas Classic

My blogging has come to an abrupt stop in the last minute mad-dash before Christmas. Here are a few clips to keep the holiday bright:

A hillarious Frazier episode (in 3 separate clips):

Highlights from Elf:

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

A Day of Infamy

Only time will tell who is on the right side of this issue. The reason I believe the health care bill recently passed by the US Senate (and almost certain to become law) is so onerous, so devastating as to merit comparison with the day Pearl Harbor fell under attack and plunged our country into the darkness of a world war -the reason for this comparison is because I believe this bill will just as negatively affect America. I believe that in another quarter century we will be in the throws of bankruptcy and the government of the United States will be in danger of collapse, mirroring the Soviet Union's demise in the last quarter century.

Here are a few reasons why I am in morning and deeply lament this piece of legislation:
1. it increases the power of the federal government to dictate in citizen's personal affairs.
2. it increases taxes (doesn't the government claim/take enough of the citizen's labor already?)
3. it reduces incentives for individuals to take responsibility of their own lives
4. it increases individual dependency on the government
5. there was no support by the opposition party (not 1 republican voted for it). For a law that will have such immense impact on the lives of the citizenry, to pass in such a polarized manner is dangerous. While it may technically qualify as a democratic process, nearly half of the citizens are having a law to which they disagree imposed upon them. This degree of political divide over a law has not happened since the Civil War.
6. very few of our political representatives have even read the entire bill.
7. the law does not uniformly apply to all citizens and states (what quallifies Nebraska for certain exemptions and not the other 49 states -except to "buy" the vote of its Senator? Fruthermore, what is so onerous as to make the exemption so valuable... but the rest of the states are subject to the full extent of the law).
8. there was no transparency in this legislation, no period of contemplation.
9. unintended consequences have not been fully (or even summarily) considered.
10. there is no tort reform or other obvious health care reform elements in the law.
11. we have abandoned capitalism or a government mandated fix. Capitalism has been the engine of innovation, national wealth, prosperity and general lifestyle improvement that lifted the US from a fledgling country into a superpower during the 19th and 20th centuries... now we are going to abandon that strategy... why? And we are going to adopt a strategy employed by mediocre and faltering countries... why?
12. our elected officials have arrogantly dismissed the proponderance of public opinion on this issue.

Poorly designed and rashly enacted policies have proven debilative to national progress and injurious to individual citizens. This is one lesson of history every representative should have stamped on their forehead. It is not relagated to republican or democrat, it is endemic in our system of government. But this law far exceeds this danger. It threatens our future fiscal wellbeing (who really thinks we've accomplished sustainability and somehow created a better system than medicare, the post office or any other program with nationwide reach), creates dependency on the government for personal decisions and establishes a preference for social/government mandate over solutions provided by the FREE market of competing ideas.

The grave of classic America is dug and the corpse of the "great experiment" is about to be laid to rest. The greatest tradgey in this story is that none of our historic enemies -not England, Germany, the Soviet Union, communism or radical Islam- killed this remarkable creature, we killed ourselves.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Pres. Obama: the "great" communicator

President Obama is a gifted communicator in the Orwellian "double speak" and contemporary style of using lots of words to say nothing and everything (via purposeful vagueness) at the same time. His campaign mantra, "change" is the perfect illustration. It means everything (at least everything any hearer wanted it to mean) and nothing at the same time.

Now his admirers are becoming frustrated with his rhetorical style:
"I have come to the conclusion that the real reason this gifted communicator has become so bad at communicating is that he doesn’t really believe a word that he is saying."

Read the entire critique, it is worth your time and consideration. As I have said from the beginning (and as I hold true also in the case of cataclysmic global warming/climate change): the emperor has no clothes on! Do not be duped by the high-sounding rhetoric.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

A gift that keeps on giving

One of the most frustrating aspects of Christmas, for me, is the transitory nature of gifts. Think about the gifts you gave last year: toys, clothes, jewlry, a kitchen appliance or even a trip to some exotic destination. These were most likely heartfelt tokens of affection but they were finite. As mere humans, our gifts are only shadows of the gifts God pours down upon us. His are immeasurable in degree, duration and denomination (that is, His gifts saturate our lives).
How is it then that a ten month old child is able to give a gift that is more lasting and more impactful than anything I will offer to another during this season. This is what I mean:

Every morning I open the door to his room and find this little angle standing in his crib just waiting for mom or dad to walk through the door so he can give a big smile. That one thing is enough to brighten up any day and cause everything that is troubling in the world to be right if even just for a couple moments.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Don't beleive in Evil? A case that may help you to start believing

Unfortunately people who believe in morality (especially those who live in the civilized/"first" world) are often very naive. We find it difficult to comprehend real evil. Oh sure, bad things happen, but we live in a very "comfy" world largely sheltered from evil that is unabashedly vicious and would make us wretch. Instead we purchase violent video games and watch Hollywood depictions -both of which we call "entertainment". I surmise that populations that really know evil (because they live amidst it every day) would not be entertained by our quasi-violence. They would give all they had to spend one leisurely day in a city park or other place our youth label as "boring".

Our contemporary conception of evil is often quaint and provincial. In fact, there is a large population of the "western world" that believes in an idea called moral relativism. Among other things, adherants to this concept believe that the notions of good and evil are subjective. In other words there is no real evil. Judging things, people and countries as "evil" is a relic and evidence of a non-enlightened people. In a post-modern world of "progressive" thought, to label something evil is as unsophisticated as faith in diety, belief that marriage should only be allowed between two people of the opposite sex and denial of global warming. To this crowd I am a virtual neandrathal.

Evil exists and I only need one recent world event to prove it. You may have heard of the terrorist (suicide) bombing during a medical school graduation ceremony in Somolia last week... Oh, you didn't hear about it? Shocking that our news media was obsessed with story of Tiger Woods! Well, here is a summary and a story link:

Somolia is a hell-hole of a country. Services, infrastructure, medical care, commerce among other elements of civilized society are entirely non-existent. Consider the presence of doctors (let alone hospitals and systems of basic medical support): there are almost no doctors in the country. "Before last year's (2008) graduation, almost two decades had passed since anyone earned a medical degree in Somalia." Think about it, that is a stunning indictment. Not one medical degree granted in almost 20 years!

Enter Benadir Univerity and a group of very courageous doctors: "Benadir University was established in 2002 by a group of Somali doctors who wanted to promote higher education in a country where physicians have become victims of the seemingly endless violence. Medical degrees are obtained there after six years of study." Last week the second graduating class comprised of 43 medical, computer science and engineering students were gathered for their graduation ceremony when some dispicable organization sent a suicide bomber into the middle of the graduation and murdered at least 22 people (people who had spent 6 years in training and preparation to spend their lives in service of their countrymen and to committed to try and build something of their pathetic country).

Want to see what a glorious existence and blessed life we have in America? Want to see the evil that would squelch the light of progress, freedom and goodness? Then take five minutes and read.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

I was right, I was right, I was right!

I hate to say it, but I was right! OK, I don't hate to say it... I love to be right. Several weeks ago I made a prediction and it is right here on my blog for everyone to see. In summary, I predicted that President Obama would finally announce his military plans for Afghanistan within 1 to 2 weeks after his health care effort passed.

No, the so called "Obama-care" has not completely been passed into law (thank goodness), it is still several steps away and will hopefully never get to that point BUT it matured enough for President Obama to claim victory and to show his left-leaning/"progressive" supporters that he is taking up their cause. This provided sufficient placation protection for him to move forward on the war in Afghanistan in a way that would draw the ire of the same left-leaning/"progressive" crowd. Rather than restating his dilemna, I refer you back to my original predictive blog and simply say, "I told you so."

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Gratitude in a poem

I have a curious relationship with poetry. I have been profoundly affected by a handful of poems. I love the wisdom they convey as well as the beauty inherent in their composition. The title of my blog is the title of a poem for crying out loud. On the other hand I find the vast majority of poetry to be sappy and uninteresting (is "uninteresting" a word). I guess I approach poetry as I do chile rellenos. I love a good chile relleno but the world is so full of mediocre chile rellenos that I am extremely hesitant to order them.... but when you find a good one, there is nothing better.

That being said, here is a poem that I was force to learn and to love. My mother did it. It is all her fault. She placed this poem over the kitchen sink when I was a child (before electric dishwashers were a common household appliance). So I spent many evenings washing dishes and staring at the only thing on the kitchen counter: this poem. It was probably the first thing I ever memorized and is buried deep in the recesses of my cerebral cortex. Here it is by memory (even though I have not recited it in probably two years):

Thank God for dirty dishes,
they have a tale to tell
while other folks go hungry,
we are eating very well.

For home, health and happiness
we should not want to fusss.
For by this stack of evidence
God is very good to us.

And so, as the week of Giving Thanks continues, I publically express my gratitude to God for the dirty dishes that daily stack up in our sink (and that have been a daily evidence of God's prosperous hand in my life from the time of my childhood til this very day).

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Wacky Wednesday 2009, Vol. 27

Ahhhh. The long awaited return of Wacky Wednesday. My deepest apologies for not paying attention to the need for some levity. Let's get back into the habit of Wacky Wednesday slowly (just one picture-thought for this week):

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Week of Giving Thanks continues...

Our precocious little Logan seems to have similar tendencies as her dad and Mrs. Wicke. Here is an exercise she completed at school: