Tom's Thoughts

Location: Granite Falls, North Carolina, United States

I'm an ordained United Methodist minister no longer pastoring churches, a former media producer with skills ten years out of date, a writer trying to sell my first novel, and a sales associate keeping body and soul together working for the People's Republic of Corporate America. I'm married to the most wonderful woman in the world, who was my best friend for 17 years before we married.

Friday, March 14, 2008

More random thoughts

--I recently heard on NPR about a study done in Indiana, where part of the state observed Daylight Saving Time and part didn't. Turns out more energy was consumed in the part of the state where DST was in effect. So claims of DST saving energy are bogus. A book a few years ago (which I believe I have referenced before) stated that the research shows people drive more during the later daylight hours, thus DST costs more energy than it saves. Now the Indiana study confirms it. Turning up the thermostat an hour earlier when it's colder and keeping the air conditioner turned cooler during a later evening hour before turning it up at bedtime burns more electricity than would be used otherwise. I've never really liked DST, anyway, even though it does give me another hour to drive with the top down.

--Hillary Clinton lost my vote for good the other day. I heard her audio clip when she said, in effect, that John McCain was more prepared to be Commander-in-Chief than Barak Obama is. First, she falls into the Republican trap of calling the C-in-C role of the President the most important role, contrary to the Constitution's portrayal of that office. Then, she gives the Republicans ammunition to use against the eventual Democratic nominee in the fall. Because of that I will not vote for her in the primary, and if she wins the nomination, I will vote for a third-party candidate in November.

--I have looked at the situation, and I believe that Obama is the closest thing we have available to the President we need in these times. We need someone with the compassion of Abraham Lincoln, with the passion for the environment and trust-busting of Theodore Roosevelt, with the vision and ambition to get things done of a Franklin D. Roosevelt, the scrappy tenacity of a Harry Truman, and the vision to inspire people of a John F. Kennedy. Nobody has all that, but of all the candidates left, Barak Obama comes closest. He is talking about reaching out across the aisle (as opposed to the triangulation of the Clintons) and about inspiring hope in the population. Now, if he will appoint John Edwards as Secretary of Housing and Urban Development and others of equal caliber to other important posts, we will have a good eight years ahead of us.

Enough for now. Any questions?

Friday, March 07, 2008

Once again, connecting the dots

Okay, let's see: George W. Bush and Osama bin Laden were both investors in the Bank of Commerce and Credit (or was it Credit and Commerce--I don't remember) International (BCCI) when John Kerry's investigations got it shut down because of its corruption.

Next dot: W. made his first million in the Carlyle Group alongside Osama's brother.

Next dot: When Iraq threatened to invade Kuwait Osama bin Laden, fresh from driving the Soviets out of Afghanistan (with U. S. help--see Charlie Wilson's War), goes to the Saudi royal family asking for permission to take out Saddam Hussein. They refuse and bring in the Americans and their allies, instead. Osama's Al Qaeda turns against the Americans for violating the Holy Places in Saudi Arabia.

Next dot: Al Qaeda attacks U. S. interests--including bombing two embassies in Africa. President Clinton bombs places in Sudan and Afghanistan thought to be sanctuaries for Osama and his boys. Republicans condemn Clinton for this. The CIA has Osama in its sights in Afghanistan, but the royal family of Dubai protects him. Clinton puts a contract out with a price on Osama's head.

Next dot: Al Qaeda attacks the U. S. S. Cole in October, 2000. In December it is proved conclusively that it was Al Qaeda, but the news was full of hanging chads and the Supreme Court installing W. into the White House.

Next dot: The first thing W. does when assuming the Oval Office is to take the bounty OFF Osama's head, even knowing he was behind the Cole attack.

Next dot: The security agencies report to Bush that Al Qaeda was planning an attack inside the U. S., and Bush does nothing.

Next dot: 9/11. Bush vows to get Osama, "dead or alive."

Next dot: Immediately after 9/11 Bush lets all of Osama bin Laden's family fly out of the U. S. before any can be questioned about Osama's whereabouts.

Next dot: When the finest fighting force in the world, the U. S. military, has Osama surrounded at Tora Bora in Afghanistan, Bush cuts and runs to go attack Saddam Hussein, Osama's biggest enemy in the Arab world, even though Bush later admits that Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11.

Next dot: It is learned that the Saudi royal family financed the 9/11 hijackers. Bush walks around the Rose Garden holding hands with the Saudi Prince.

Next dot: Osama's lieutenant, Zarkawi, was in Iraq, and Saddam was trying to hunt him down when his hunt was interrupted by the American invasion. This invasion opens the door to Al Qaeda to come into Iraq and give them a foothold they didn't have before.

Next dot: In a press conference Bush admits: "I don't care about" Osama bin Laden.

Next dot: Bush tries to turn over ownership of U. S. ports to the same Dubai royal family that protected bin Laden from the CIA.

Next dot: Osama bin Laden is still taunting us, still plotting against America, and Bush is leaving it to the British to thwart the plots while W. continues to give his attention to shredding the Constitution here at home, instead of working against Al Qaeda.