Keepin’ It Real

August 3, 2008

Soprano Rita Streich: Because Today Deserves Something Beautiful

Filed under: Culture — mary @ 1:07 am

In my opinion, Austrian coloratura soprano Rita Streich (1920-1987) was the most exquisite singer. Her voice was beautifully pure; her interpretation of text was understated and impeccable. Her voice was perfection.

This is a 1964 recital in which Miss Streich sings Franz Schubert’s gorgeous lied Nacht und Träume (Night and Dreams), D. 827.

Heil’ge Nacht, du sinkest nieder;
Nieder wallen auch die Träume
Wie dein Mondlicht durch die Räume,
Durch der Menschen stille Brust.
Die belauschen sie mit Lust;
Rufen, wenn der Tag erwacht:
Kehre wieder, heil’ge Nacht!
Holde Träume, kehret wieder!
(Matthäus von Collin, poet)

Holy night, you sink down;
Dreams drift down
Like your moonlight through the rooms,
Through the still human breast.
They listen with delight;
Calling, when the day awakes:
Come back, holy night!
Fair dreams, come back again!

Pardon my rather rugged translation. It is really such a beautiful poem, so ethereal. It is captured perfectly by Miss Streich, transparent like the dream and the moonlight.

And for a few moments there is beauty in the world.

August 1, 2008

Ken Salazar (D-CO) Objects to Drilling Even if Gas Reaches $10 per Gallon

Filed under: Colorado,Ken Salazar,Politics — mary @ 2:48 pm

This is my U.S. Senator, who will toe the party line, even at the expense of his constituents’ needs. He objects to a consent agreement which would allow emergency drilling on the outer continental shelf even when the price of gas reaches $10.00 per gallon. Salazar calls drilling a “phantom solution”.

How long do Coloradoans have to suffer high gas prices before we drill for the natural resources which are under our territory? Are you so beholden to the environmentalists, Senator Salazar, that you could care less about the working families you supposedly represent?

July 31, 2008

Obama doesn’t look like “all those other presidents on the dollar bills” because he is not a Washington insider?

Filed under: Barack Obama,Politics — mary @ 1:04 pm

So Barack Obama thinks that the McCain camp is trying to scare folks. He states that others are saying he is risky because “doesn’t look like all those other presidents on the dollar bills.”.

Race card? Obama’s spokesman Robert Gibbs says no:

What Barack Obama was talking about was that he didn’t get here after spending decades in Washington,” Gibbs said. (See Jonathan Martin, Politco.com)

Interesting. So this got me to thinking about history. How many of those other faces on dollar bills (I’m assuming he means all demoninations) became president as Washington insiders?

One dollar bill: George Washington. Despite the fact that there was no Washington at the time he was president, he was the general who won the Revolutionary War. He was also a humble citizen/patriot.

Two dollar bill: Thomas Jefferson. Author of the Declaration of Independence and important advocate for liberty. A Founding Father. Because of him, our Constitution contained a Bill of Rights as he was one of its most influential advocates. Another man who was not a Washington insider. Another citizen/patriot

Five dollar bill: Abraham Lincoln. Led this country through its bleakest hours. He issued the Emancipation Proclamation, freeing the slaves. He was assassinated for his courage. And, he wasn’t a Washington insider, having served in the US House of Representatives for two years (1847-49) over a decade before being elected to the presidency.

Ten dollar bill: Alexander Hamilton. Never president. He was a soldier in the Revolutionary War, a member of the Continental Congress and the Philadelphia Constitutional Convention, which adopted the Constitution of 1787. He was the first Secretary of the Treasury. Perhaps an insider, but like George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, he is a Founding Father.

Twenty dollar bill: Andrew Jackson. General revered for defeating the British in New Orleans during the War of 1812. He had been involved in politics in the late 18th century and served for less than one year in the US House of Representatives (1797-98 ) as Tennessee’s first elected congressman. He also served in the Senate for less than two years (1823-24). He became President in 1828, running against the Washington establishment as a champion of the common man. Definitely not a Washington insider.

Fifty dollar bill: Ulysses S. Grant. Victorious general of the Civil War. Never held public office prior to being elected President. Not a Washington insider. Not even a politician.

One hundred dollar bill: Benjamin Franklin: Never President. Founding Father, author, inventor, entrepreneur, he helped draft the Declaration of Independence with Thomas Jefferson. Many consider him to be the quintessential prototype of the self-made American man. Another citizen/patriot.

So, what do all these men have in common? Were they Washington insiders as Senator Obama’s camp wishes to paint them? I would say no. They were men who gave their all for their countries. They were men who helped shape this country’s ideas and its destiny. They were some of our best, and were thus honored. The Obama campaign should not cheapen their accomplishments by labelling them Washington insiders like they were simply sleezy political pols. It is an insult to our heritage and the men who have made our country great.

Senator Obama, you could only wish to resemble the men whose faces adorn our currency.

Update: The Obama camp admits that it really was about his race. Big surprise.

Mr. Goodwrench for Barack Obama’s Secretary of Energy

Filed under: Barack Obama,Energy Crisis,Politics — mary @ 10:52 am

For many years Democrats have stated that Republicans are out of touch with average Americans. Barack Obama’s statement yesterday that we should all inflate our tires to proper pressure and get regular tune-ups and that would solve the energy crisis is truly out of touch. As he continues to travel the globe in gas guzzling airplanes and motorcades of several gas-guzzling vehicles, he tells us to inflate our tires and tune up our cars.

Senator Obama, Americans are struggling. There are Americans paying $70 to fill up their tanks so they can drive to work, many times earning around $15 per hour. They are working almost an entire day to fill up their cars (that doesn’t include taxes withheld before they have their pay). Food is going through the roof due to skyrocketing energy costs, and you tell us nothing will help relieve average Americans difficulties but BASIC AUTO MAINTENANCE??

Elitist comments like this show what type of president you would be: a man totally out of touch with the average American.

We need to produce more energy NOW. We have abundant natural resources to power our citizens under our own land. Let us have what belongs to us!!

December 27, 2007

Hillary! says oil prices will drop when she is inaugurated

Filed under: Hillary! — mary @ 1:23 am

Here is an interesting campaign promise made by Hillary! as reported by Michael McAuliff
in the New York Daily News:

MANCHESTER, N.H. – Hillary Clinton predicted Saturday that just electing her President will cut the price of oil.

When the world hears her commitment at her inauguration about ending American dependence on foreign fuel, Clinton says, oil-pumping countries will lower prices to stifle America’s incentive to develop alternative energy.

“I predict to you, the oil-producing countries will drop the price of oil,” Clinton said, speaking at the Manchester YWCA. “They will once again assume, once the cost pressure is off, Americans and our political process will recede.”

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/2007/12/23/2007-12-23_elect_me_and_oil_prices_instantly_drop_s-1.html

What in the world does she mean by “Americans and our political process will recede? It is an utterly nonsensical statement.

And, does she think by making some feel-good inaugural address, she will scare the oil producers into lowering prices? Does she think that outlining her plan for energy independence will immediately lower demand and increase supply? If this were the case, wouldn’t Congress’ passage of higher CAFE standards for US automakers this week have automatically lowered oil prices? It didn’t happen:

Dec. 27 (Bloomberg) — Crude oil traded near a one-month high in New York on speculation U.S. inventories declined for a fifth week and after Turkish planes bombed suspected Kurdish bases in northern Iraq.

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20602099&sid=a_nvB8Z6j2RQ&refer=energy

Merely announcing some grand plan does not affect the market, unless Hillary! will be announcing immediate mandated curbs on Americans’ oil usage (perhaps this is how Americans will recede – back to horses an buggies and fireplaces for warmth).

Making such ridiculous promises as to what the market will do when she is elected shows that Hillary! is not ready for Prime Time. Just telling America that you are ready to be President does not make it a reality.

December 22, 2007

The best Christmas message by a Presidential Candidate

Filed under: Fred Thompson — mary @ 6:15 pm

From Fred Thompson:

God Bless our Troops!

November 9, 2007

Shame on You Congressman Ed Perlmutter

Filed under: Colorado,Ed Perlmutter — mary @ 1:27 pm

Congressman Ed Perlmutter, democrat from Colorado’s 7th Congressional District recently sent out a constituent mailing touting his work on behalf of Colorado families by helping them in financial crisis. In his mailing he puts forth the typical democrat agenda – battling subprime mortgage “abuse”, better student loans, blah, blah, blah.

I have no problem with constituent mailings. This, however, takes the cake. It consisted of an 11″ x 17″ tri-fold glossy full-color brochure touting the congressman’s accomplishments and also telling constituents where to check their credit ratings. There was a nice photo of the happy congressman meeting with constituents on financial matters and a wonderful testimonial from a constituent who Permutter helped to keep her house from foreclosure. Frankly, the whole thing looked like a campaign brochure. I scanned portions of it as an illustration (click on the thumbnail to see the a somewhat larger image):

scan0004.jpg

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And right smack on it was the disclaimer “This mailing was prepared, published and mailed at taxpayer expense.”

In an effort to find out how much this cost the taxpayer, I went to several online printing houses to get estimates for what such a brochure would cost to print. The average cost was about 9 cents per piece. At an estimated 300,000 households in the district( Perlmutter’s congressional website states that the 7th’s population is over 614,000, so I asssumed an average two people per household) , the printing costs would be about $27,000. (I think that 9 cents per item is on the low side as I doubt the congressman used a low-budget web-based printing vendor.) I then did a bit of research on franking expenses. According to a 2001 rate chart issued by the US Postal Service for members of Congress for constituent mailings the cost of a 100,000 piece mailing to constituents was $14,500. Figuring approximately 300,000 households in Colorado’s 7th Congressional District the postage on this mailing at 2001 postage rates is $43,500. There have been postage rate increases since then, so I’m sure this figure is higher.

So this nice little campaign ad disguised as constituent mailing probably cost us taxpayers more than $70,000, a very conservative estimate. Most likely it was a lot more.

Seems that Perlmutter likes to spend money on franked mail. According to the Colorado Springs Gazette Perlmutter spent $19,000 his first quarter in office on franking. I would be interested to see what his printing costs were.

This dandy brochure also contained a nice little card which can be returned to the congressman in which I could share my financial concerns by checking off financial issues facing my family. Such issues I could check off were “affordable college tuition”, “savings for retirement”, “high interest rates on credit cards” and “rising mortgage costs”. Unfortunately, he failed to put the check box for “rising cost of government due to wasteful spending by congressmen”

I love that in the 2006 election democrats campaigned on wasteful spending by the republicans and also on how much more ethical they were than republicans. Unfortunately, this particular mailing is wasteful and shows a lack of ethics in that it is really campaign literature paid for by the taxpayer. Shame on you, Ed Perlmutter.

Tell you what, Congressman Perlmutter, you stop wasting my money and I’ll deal with saving for my own retirement and my kids’ college. Okay?

October 19, 2007

Hillary Clinton renames same old “crisis”

Filed under: Hillary!,Politics — mary @ 12:36 pm

Do you fondly remember the gloom and doom days when most of us were “one paycheck away from homelessness” because of the policies of the evil Republicans? Hillary has taken that same old tired retread and revamped it calling the economy a “trapdoor” thanks to the evil George Bush:

In a new ad to run in Iowa, Hillary Clinton states:

“The Bush economy is like a trapdoor. Too many families are one pink slip, one missed mortgage payment one medical diagnosis away from falling through and losing everything,”

The ad continues:

“If you’re ready for change, she’s ready to lead,”

It doesn’t seem that Mrs. Clinton can lead a movement for change when she can’t even find a fresh and new crisis to exploit.

And P.S. Mrs. Clinton, a chicken in every pot has already been done too. Have your aides google Herbert Hoover.

Harry Reid takes credit for raising $2M+ on Limbaugh letter auction

Filed under: Harry Reid,Rush Limbaugh — mary @ 11:36 am

Trying to make lemonade out of lemons!

Here’s the video:

http://www.breitbart.tv/html/6938.html

Harry Reid in a Senate speech seems to be taking credit for Rush Limbaugh being able to raise over $2 million Marine Corps. – Law Enforcement Foundation.

Poor Harry – all the thunder taken out of his and his democratic colleagues’ attempt to quash political speech (and lying about the contents of the speech to boot!) The brilliant end run has hang-dog Harry urging people to search HIS name on ebay and to bid!

BTW, if you want to donate to the Marine Corps. – Law Enforcement Foundation, which helps the children of fallen heroes, here’s the link to its homepage (click contributions on the left toolbar):

http://www.mc-lef.org/

October 2, 2007

Obama: My 9-year old doesn’t like Hilton Hotels (Are children running the world?)

Filed under: Culture,Obama!,Politics — mary @ 1:06 pm

For those who think that one can only find interesting news in serious newspapers and websites, I must say that sometimes news can be found in the most unexpected places. My example comes from the most popular of celebrity gossip mags, People.

People reported that yesterday, presidential candidate Barak Obama, appeared on the Tyra Banks Show (Tyra’s show, for the uninitiated, is filled with “gal talk” – relationships, fashion, breast exams, and battling eating disorders, to name a few of the topics – and I admit to having seen a show or two). During this interview, according to People, Obama admitted to Tyra Banks, that his 9-year-old daughter grills him to make sure that the hotels they stay in are not Hiltons:

Sen. Barack Obama took an unusual break from the campaign trail – to gaze into a crystal ball with Tyra Banks.

And what does he see in his future, Banks asked the 46-year-old presidential candidate? “I see the White House,” he replied, matter-of-factly, on her show Monday.

Obama also made clear that his wife and daughters are extremely particular on where it spends their nights.

“This isn’t a Hilton hotel, is it?” he said his 9-year-old daughter, Malia, will ask as the family tours the country – because the little one keeps up with the news and does not approve of Paris Hilton, he says.

http://www.people.com/people/article/0,,20091040,00.html

This just struck me as interesting. I have a daughter close to young Malia’s age, so I know a lot of kids in that age bracket. Frankly, none of the kids in 3rd and 4th grade who I know follow the news. My daughter doesn’t know Paris Hilton from Paris, France. I think she is too young to know about such things. Anyway, she is too busy pretending to be a pioneer woman or a fairy or capturing snakes and caterpillers in the yard.

What really struck me was the power we have been giving to children in our society and in our political arena. Young Malia Obama gets to have a say in what hotels the family stays in because she “does not approve of Paris Hilton”. When do children have a say in such matters? What has happened to adults that we allow children to dictate what should be adult decisions.

In the public square, we are also letting children boss adults around. Take, for example, 12-year-old Graeme Frost of Baltimore, Maryland, delivered the Democrats’ response to President Bush’s radio address on Saturday, in which he urged President Bush not to veto the renewal of the Children’s Health Insurance Program. Here is a portion of the transcript from young Graeme’s address to the nation:

Hi, my name is Graeme Frost. I’m 12 years old and I live in Baltimore, Maryland. Most kids my age probably havent heard of CHIP, the Childrens Health Insurance Program. But I know all about it, because if it weren’t for CHIP, I might not be here today

CHIP is a law the government made to help families like mine afford healthcare for their kids. Three years ago, my family was in a really bad car accident. My younger sister Gemma and I were both hurt. I was in a coma for a week and couldn’t eat or stand up or even talk at first. My sister was even worse.

I was in the hospital for five-and-a-half months and I needed a big surgery. For a long time after that, I had to go to physical therapy after school to get stronger. But even though I was hurt badly, I was really lucky. My sister and I both were.

My parents work really hard and always make sure my sister and I have everything we need, but the hospital bills were huge. We got the help we needed because we had health insurance for us through the CHIP program. But there are millions of kids out there who don’t have CHIP, and they wouldn’t get the care that my sister and I did if they got hurt. Their parents might have to sell their cars or their houses, or they might not be able to pay for hospital bills at all.

Now I’m back to school. One of my vocal chords is paralyzed so I don’t talk the same way I used to. And I can’t walk or run as fast as I did. The doctors say I can’t play football any more, but I might still be able to be a coach. I’m just happy to be back with my friends.

I don’t know why President Bush wants to stop kids who really need help from getting CHIP. All I know is I have some really good doctors. They took great care of me when I was sick, and I’m glad I could see them because of the Childrens Health Program.

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,298593,00.html

Ah, using a child to impart your emotional message. Seems to have become the Democrats’ modus operendi in the past few years. They use a child to convey their simplistic lies. Young Graeme was covered and would continue to be covered under CHIP. President Bush has never proposed to do away with the program, but young Graeme may be too young to understand that the Democrats for whom he speaks want to increase the program to include children of families making close to $80,000 per year, which has many budgetary implications. But, how would a youngster, who dreams of being a coach, know how to differentiate the two sides in a political squabble and the sophisticated pros and cons of each side? And, worse yet, why is a child being put in the position to castigate the President of the United States, an adult?

And then there was Ilana Wexler, Founder of Kids for Kerry, who at 12 was given the speaker’s podium at the 2004 Democratic National Convention to tell Vice President Cheney he needed a “timeout”. When I was a child, speaking in such a manner to or about an adult would have caused to the child to be labeled fresh. Now such children are celebrities. In fact, Ilana is now being recruited by the Hillary Clinton camp to chide the Republicans in the 2008 election cycle.

I probably sound tremendously old-fashioned (and I relish that label, frankly), but we as adults need to take back authority from children. Children should not be running our families nor should they be calling out our political leaders. They still are children and need to respect adults. Also, for those who use them in the political process (and I mean USE), they are demeaning the political process as well as demeaning the children they use. Let them play ball, catch bugs, dream dreams and PLAY. Don’t drag them into adult matters that they aren’t mentally and emotionally ready to deal with. It really does a disservice to them.

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