Click:(Sent by Arlene Taber.)
My high school crowd is planning to celebrate its 60th class reunion later this summer. At this age one must become very conservative about ones verbs…..therefore the word “planning”…..or is it a gerund?
I am not one of the planners. I am merely planning to attend.
I wasn’t a planner when I was in high school either. I was a pinball in a pinball machine, bouncing from one station to the next trying to hold on the those stations which particulary persuaded me.
I was born curious and had an overtime drive to explore things around me as long as it had nothing to do with machines. . The exploring was the male in me that separated my daily schedule from anyone else in my family. Dad was duty bound and profoundly responsible whose voice was never raised in anger. He was at his corner drug store seven days a week. My sister was permanently retired to her bedroom to play paperdolls.
My mother was German.
This woman was disciplined and driven. She performed work even when sound asleep…….as if she were a laser beam constantly turned on targets to conquer, which passed through her mind a mile a minute.
And so I went to school where old maid grown ups shared their knowledge and never asked me how I felt. Instead they asked me questions about American heroes, history, plants, insects, algebra, stories of family struggles, told me how to write, what a verb was, and the good fortunes of being American were.
I went to school where they taught me and mentioned to others the importance of gathering knowledge.
There were two major reasons, they repeated, why WE, meaning folks of American and western civilization, MUST KNOW AS MUCH KNOWLEDGE AS CAN BE LEARNED IN A LIFE TIME.
Amassing knowledge will best allow us to become better citizens for we live in a democratic society. Our vote is sacred. The more we know, the better citizens we shall become when we vote in order to keep our democracty healthy……and
Equally as important, and maybe for some, more important: The more knowledge we humans gather, the closer we are to God, for God is all knowing, I was told……in public school, which teachings were in beautiful harmony with the mood and message of my Church and the neighborhood where I lived.
My 3rd grade teacher, Lucille Jaeger, repeatedly reminded me of these purposes of human life……as if they were the only ones that really counted.
The ACLU had not been aroused yet with its notions of the superiority of atheism as a people’s code for life.
By 7th grade and 8th grade at the same school, there was a break in this school-day occupation, when suddenly GIs showed up to rule the classrooms. They had survived the terrors of World War II, but were not prepared to compete as God-given answers to the old maid school teachers they were beginning to replace…….women who had amassed their time, their gifts and talents from decades and decades of devoted and professional learnings and teachings to pursue and preserve truth as truth could be discovered.
The GIs fought in the foxholes for their life’s learnings. They came home and had families to feed. Their country extended its gratefullness for their service by offering them a college education.
The GIs needed a job. They were assigned to schools like Horace Mann Elementary School in St. Paul in 1947.
On the knowledge front they could not compete with the old ladies who had spent their lives teaching topics they loved.
I became rebelious in 1947. I had never been in a class in which so many topics I knew more ‘facts’ than my teachers. And, unfortunately for me and others, I let it be known. I hated this new wave of schooling, where the teacher begs the opinions of total know-nothings. Lucky for us all in the classes then, my fellow students, as did I, knew we knew nothing about life and its trials. But we were programmed to respect God, honor, and country, and a duty to continue to expose the unknown.
We knew we were students. No one gave a damn about our self-esteem. We’d have to earn that. The cancers of the feminist mind had not become public legislation yet. Hysteria was not yet being propagated as an essential for classroom learnings.
An so, in the fall of 1948, I was sent to attend St. Paul’s Central High School, 4 grades of 1,700 student human animals gathered together for meaningful and disciplined learnings.
Closing in on graduation from the eighth grade, I was told with authority that I had better shape up, by my 8th grade history teacher, Dagmar McClement. This large, bossomy commanding woman had a tone in her voice which spoke a language all of its own. “There, in high school” I was told, is where I had better perform my school duties or I would be a failure in life….a mere “waste of breath” she told me angrily with ugly lines all over her brow.
I attended St. Paul’s Central High School from September, 1948 to June, 1952. Until my senior year, when the first wave of Liberals arrived to obstruct learnings, I was one of the luckiest teenage boy I could possibly have been…..both by the luck of the draw and the talents of these well educated, thoroughly adult single women who deeply loved their role in life…….teaching knowledge to knowledge thirsty students…….animals who knew they were near the bottom of the human totem pole but had a life ahead of them to rise above that bottom.
My God, as I look back, I was lucky in life.
I plan to attend these August events of the old and retired…..But, I can only plan….a condition I share with all others from my class of 1952. Like then, sixty years ago, I am more an observer than a participant. I have no day-to-day contact with any of my close friends from that time. Some are already dead. Yet, there are many I know from the classrooms and my childhood neighborhood whom I hope are still breathing good air. It’s still good to be alive even in these difficult times of Obama’s closing of America.
Mark Steyn: Obama redefines ‘Green Zone’
from the Orange County Register:
Queen Elizabeth II celebrated her Diamond Jubilee a few days ago – that’s 60 years on the throne. Just to put it in perspective, she’s been queen since Harry S. Truman was president. At any rate, her jubilee has been a huge success, save for a few churlish republicans in various corners of Her Majesty’s realms from London to Toronto to Sydney pointing out how absurd it is for grown citizens to be fawning over a distant head of state who lives in a fabulous, glittering cocoon entirely disconnected from ordinary life.
Which brings us to President Obama.
Last week, the republic’s citizen-president passed among his fellow Americans. Where? Cleveland? Dubuque? Presque Isle, Maine? No, Beverly Hills. These days, it’s pretty much always Beverly Hills or Manhattan, because that’s where the money is. That’s the Green Zone, and you losers are outside it. Appearing at an Obama fundraiser at the home of “Glee” creator Ryan Murphy and his fiancé David Miller, the president, reasonably enough, had difficulty distinguishing one A-list Hollywood summit from another. “I just came from a wonderful event over at the Wilshire or the Hilton – I’m not sure which,” said Obama, “because you go through the kitchens of all these places, and so you never are quite sure where you are.
Ah, the burdens of stardom. The old celebrities-have-to-enter-through-the-kitchen line. The last time I heard that was a couple of decades back in London when someone was commiserating with Sinatra on having to be ushered in through the back. Frank brushed it aside. We were at the Savoy, or maybe the Waldorf. I can’t remember, and I came in through the front door. Oddly enough, the Queen enters hotels through the lobby. So do Prince William and his lovely bride. A month ago, they stayed at a pub in Suffolk for a friend’s wedding, and came in through the same door as mere mortals. Imagine that!
So far this year, President Obama has been to three times as many fundraisers as President George W. Bush had attended by this point in the 2004 campaign. This is what the New York Post calls his “torrid pace,” although judging from those remarks in California he’s about as torrid as an overworked gigolo staggering punchily through the last mambo of the evening. According to Brendan J. Doherty’s forthcoming book, “The Rise of the President’s Permanent Campaign,” Obama has held more fundraisers than the previous five presidents’ re-election campaigns combined.
This is all he does now. But, hey, unlike those inbred monarchies with their dukes and marquesses and whatnot, at least he gets out among the masses. Why, in a typical week, you’ll find him at a fundraiser at George Clooney’s home in Los Angeles with Barbra Streisand and Salma Hayek. These are people who are in touch with the needs of ordinary Americans because they have played ordinary Americans in several of their movies. And then only four days later the president was in New York for a fundraiser hosted by Ricky Martin, the only man on the planet whose evolution on gayness took longer than Obama’s. It’s true that moneyed celebrities in, say, Pocatello or Tuscaloosa have not been able to tempt the president to hold a lavish fundraiser in Idaho or Alabama, but he does fly over them once in a while. Why, only a week ago, he was on Air Force One accompanied by Jon Bon Jovi en route to a fundraiser called Barack On Broadway.
Any American can attend an Obama event for a donation of a mere $35,800 – the cost of the fundraiser hosted by Dreamworks honcho Jeffrey Katzenberg, and the one hosted by Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg, and the one hosted by Will Smith and Jada Pinkett, and the one hosted by Melanie Griffith and Antonio Banderas, and the one hosted by Crosby, Stills and Nash. $35,800 is a curiously nonround figure. Perhaps the ticket cost is $36,000, but under Obamacare there’s a $200 co-pay. Those of us who grew up in hidebound, class-ridden monarchies are familiar with the old proverb that a cat can look at a king. But in America only a cool cat can look at the king.
However, there are some cheap seats available. A year and a half ago, big-money Democrats in Rhode Island paid $7,500 per person for the privilege of having dinner with President Obama at a private home in Providence. He showed up for 20 minutes and then said he couldn’t stay for dinner. “I’ve got to go home to walk the dog and scoop the poop,” he told them, because when you’ve paid seven-and-a half grand for dinner nothing puts you in the mood to eat like a guy talking about canine fecal matter. And, having done the poop gag, the president upped and exited, and left big-shot Dems to pass the evening talking to the guy from across the street. But you’ve got to admit that’s a memorable night out: $7,500 for Dinner With Obama* (*dinner with Obama not included).
And here’s an even better deal, for those who, despite the roaring economy, can’t afford even $7,500 for non-dinner with Obama: The president of the United States is raffling himself off! For the cost of a $3 nonrefundable online-application processing fee, you and your loved one can have your names put in a large presidential hat from which the FBI background-check team will pluck two to be ushered into the presence of their humble citizen-executive. That’s to say, somewhere across the fruited plain, a common-or-garden non-celebrity will win the opportunity to attend an Obama fundraiser at the home of “Sex And The City” star Sarah Jessica Parker, co-hosted by Vogue editor Anna Wintour, the British-born inspiration for the movie “The Devil Wears Prada.” I wish this were a parody, but I’m not that good. But I’m sure Sarah-Jessica and Anna will treat you just like any other minor celebrity they’ve accidentally been seated next to due to a hideous faux pas in placement, even if you do dip the wrong end of the arugula in the amuse-bouche.
If you’re wondering who Anna Wintour is, boy, what a schlub you are: She’s renowned throughout the fashion world for her scary bangs. I’m referring to her hair, not to the last sound Osama bin Laden heard as the bullet headed toward his eye socket on the personal orders of the president, in case you’ve forgotten. But that’s the kind of inside tidbit you’ll be getting, as the Commander-in-Chief leaks highly classified national-security details to you over the zebra mussel in a Eurasian-milfoil coulis. For a donation of $35,800, he’ll pose with you in a Seal Team Six uniform with one foot on Osama’s corpse (played by Harry Reid). For a donation of $46,800, he’ll send an unmanned drone to hover amusingly over your sister-in-law’s house. For a donation of $77,800, he’ll install you as the next president-for-life of Syria (liability waiver required). For a donation of $159,800, he’ll take you into Sarah Jessica’s guest bedroom and give you the full 007 while Carly Simon sings “Nobody Does It Better.”
There are monarchies and republics a-plenty, but there’s only one 24/7 celebrity fund-raising presidency. If it’s Tuesday, it must be Kim Cattrall, or Hootie and the Blowfish, or Laverne and Shirley, or the ShamWow guy … .
I wonder if the Queen ever marvels at the transformation of the American presidency since her time with Truman. Ah, well. If you can’t stand the klieg-light heat of Obama’s celebrity, stay out of the Beverly Wilshire kitchen.
A killer rabbit of a killer quote
With his hastily called press conference yesterday, President Obama sought to change the subject from the left’s horrible, no good, very bad week. Instead he added to it with this killer rabbit of a killer quote:
The private sector is doing fine. Where we’re seeing weaknesses in our economy have to do with state and local government. Oftentimes cuts initiated by, you know, Governors or mayors who are not getting the kind of help that they have in the past from the federal government and who don’t have the same kind of flexibility as the federal government in dealing with fewer revenues coming in.
And so, you know, if Republicans want to be helpful, if they really want to move forward and put people back to work, what they should be thinking about is how do we help state and local governments and how do we help the construction industry?
“The private sector is doing fine” is an utter classic of cluelessness. You’re alright, Jack. But what about the rest of this statement? Someone really ought to pause to explicate the text — take a look at what’s rattling around in Obama’s mind. What is this guy thinking?
“Where we’re seeing weaknesses in our economy have to do with state and local government.” Obama believes that state and local government budgets are a source of economic growth. The bigger the better! As we see in California, of course. One wonders what he is talking about. Governor Christie gets an A+ for his explication of the text yesterday.
“Oftentimes cuts initiated by, you know, Governors or mayors who are not getting the kind of help that they have in the past from the federal government and who don’t have the same kind of flexibility as the federal government in dealing with fewer revenues coming in.” Flexibility! Last heard in a whispered word with his Russian friend intended to be concealed from the American people, it reappears in this equally revealing statement intended for public consumption.
What is “flexibility” in this context? Unlike state and local governments under constitutional budgetary constraints, the federal government does not need to balance its budget. It can spend itself into oblivion with borrowed money. It can call on the Fed to print up a storm without constraints. Flexibility! Got it.
“And so, you know, if Republicans want to be helpful, if they really want to move forward and put people back to work, what they should be thinking about is how do we help state and local governments and how do we help the construction industry?” Forward, of course, is Obama’s campaign slogan. Obama wants Republicans to climb onboard the Obama express.
And Obama wants the federal government to “help” state and local governments. “Help” is the new “stimulus.”
Obama wants not only to help “state and local governments.” He also wants to “help” the construction industry. I thought we helped the construction industry a trillion dollars ago. But wait! I remember. It was only last year that Obama was yukking it up: “Shovel-ready was not as shovel-ready as we expected.”
It’s a rich text. There is much more that can and should be said, but I haven’t felt this over my head since I read Ulysses in college.
Scott Johnson writes at PowerLine.