Arkansas angler and fishing expert Billy Murray shares his extensive knowledge of the Diamond Lakes of Arkansas
Subject: Huckabees’ gift registries. Janet and Mike Huckabee have turned the corner on tawdriness. Haven’t we supplied a sufficiency of Velveeta for them? Enough, already!
Dr. E. Sue Doss
One has to laugh at the Deltic Timber ad now being run on television. It goes something like this: “Deltic is a land development company that owns and manages and develops land.”
It is significant that the ad ignores one significant point. This land development company pays little property tax. Look at what you pay on your home each year, about $1.25 per square foot. At the same time, developers pay an average of 25 cents per acre in property tax on land they will sell for $25,000 per acre.
If you doubt this, take note of what Central Arkansas Water and its customers will have to pay for less than 1,000 acres to protect our water supply.
The time has come for Central Arkansas Water to screw up its courage and challenge Amendment 59 on the ground that the amendment denies equal treatment under the law.
The energy war
The late 1950s found America woefully behind in the space race and in danger of losing the Cold War. The Russians had placed satellites in orbit and men in space while we sat in front of TV sets watching our own Redstone rockets implode on the launching pad. Our country was losing the war but it wasn’t because we were out-manned or out-gunned. Our problem was that we were poorly motivated and misdirected. When President John Kennedy stood up in 1961 and pledged that we would put a man on the moon by the end of the decade it wasn’t about the moon. It was about getting our country focused on science and technology and back on track.
Today we find ourselves losing another war and, despite what you might see on the nightly news, this one isn’t about Iraq or even terrorism. This war we are fighting is with ourselves and it’s about our dependence on an unstable region for our energy needs. It’s no secret that some of the money we spend on imported oil ends up in the hands of terrorists. Like the war on drugs we are financing both sides in this war on terrorism.
The 2008 presidential race is officially on. Our nation has but a short time to find a leader who will stand up and pledge that we will be energy independent within 10 years. Developing alternative fuels, dramatically improving vehicle efficiency, growing our public transportation network, and making energy conservation a national goal will not be easy to achieve. Many sacrifices will have to be made but we can do this thing. As the saying goes, this isn’t rocket science.
With the daily loss of American and Iraqi lives from this war, what can we do but mourn? Do we continue to lament the loss of life, but until we lose a loved one or a friend feel unconcerned and uninvolved with this national and world tragedy?
It was not the Argentine people who collectively decided to invade the Falkland Islands nor the Russian populace who decided to occupy Afghanistan. We as a people did not elect to go to war in Vietnam, nor did we choose to invade Iraq.
It is not the people of a country who make such decisions, but always a small handful of political figures, arguably democratically elected, who bring these catastrophic decisions to us, and leave the country with the obligation. Each of us is washed with the blood of this tragic loss of life as a result of a frighteningly small number of incompetent and unenlightened individuals. We are led by a small and simple man who will not change this course on is own.
These people with nothing personally to lose dictate and direct the future or lack of it for our citizens and others who live a half a world away from us. There is something terribly wrong with such fools who, despite their ineptness, can change and eliminate the lives of so many people. Let’s not through our silence ratify what has been done.
Has anyone noticed the Democratic Party has turned up the volume lately? The calls for a withdrawal from Iraq are louder than ever.
If I could be critical of our president for anything, it would be that his reasons for going to war were unfocused. The administration focused on weapons of mass destruction, so we could make our case to the United Nations. On invading, we didn’t find such weapons because they haven’t been there since the early 1990s before the first Gulf War. What was in Iraq, however, was a sadistic, murderous dictator who is now behind bars, thousands of terrorists (many of whom are now dead or captured) and a battle for freedom that rages on today.
It is the fight for freedom from which we should never withdraw. Whether it’s Bunker Hill, Iwo Jima or the deserts of Iraq, we have a duty to protect freedom. This is not a fight that ends with one war and begins with another. It is a fight that will continue until all people can someday live freely.
The unnecessary waste of blood has served two purposes. It washed from the minds of American people the more than $500 billion mostly rich Republicans took from federal savings and loans during the early 1990s and it gave oil and energy businesses more profits than they could dream of. The costs have been collateral — the loss of American soldiers in the war and the uncounted and uncared-for loss of Iraqi lives. Saddam would reward those who would assassinate him with death, but we would kill many more of their citizens and sow discord in a nation at peace and throw away favor internationally and with our own God with high energy costs and dwindling social programs for the needy. Like vampires, we can’t see our own reflections.
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