What Hell and Minnesota have in common


-Bumper sticker of the week: U.S. government-scaring people into obedience for the last 8 years.


-Quote of the week: ÒIf everyone howled at every injustice, every act of barbarism, every act of unkindness, then we would be taking the first step toward a real humanity.Ó  Nelson DeMille


-Everybody knows diets donÕt work, but we keep on trying. My weight is currently down some, but IÕm not quite sure of the reason. When I think about dieting, I immediately get hungry. I eat more junk than any one human should have to endure, even after having had a heart attack. I should be a vegetarian, but the thought scares me. At the least I should quite eating a whole pie, or a half-gallon of ice cream at one setting. You would think a person could control themselves a little better, but there is something about eating, particularly sweets, that I canÕt shake off. I suppose we all have that one something we find hard to resist. I donÕt smoke, drink to excess, use drugs, and I donÕt have any overwhelming desire to be a workaholic. But donÕt let me get anywhere near a bakery.


-Hell and damnation sermons never did bother me too much. I never got scared or worried about the preachers make-believe hell. Apparently he never took a real good look at war, or he must have never seen any of those commercials that show starving African children, or he must not have ever talked to parents who lost a child, or a couple divorcing after 30 years of marriage. He made up silly stories about going to hell, somewhere down-below, when all the while all he had to do was look around.


-There is no way to get out of it: Getting older, more aches and pains than pills to cure them; naps; illness; forgetfulness, impending death. You canÕt get away from this, no matter how good of a life youÕve lead, no matter how well you have taken care of yourself, how important you think you are, how needed you might be by someone else, or how sure you are that youÕll break the old age record. Death is unimpressed.


-On a lighter note: The Democratic Convention looked to be a real good party. I did enjoy some of what I was able to catch. Ted Kennedy gave a remarkable speech for the shape he is in. While he has had plenty of upÕs and downÕs during his lifetime, his leadership abilities, and desire to help others less fortunate than himself, are undeniable. His advocacy and hope to see universal health-care will be his lasting legacy. He has it right: Health-care in America should be a right, not an expensive privilege reserved for the rich. I agree with all of the speakers, now is the right time for Obama. John McCain is only more of the same. McCain is old school. He sees the world through the same eyes as Bush. HeÕs voted with him 90% of the time. A maverick heÕs not. He will not take us anywhere new. He likes what has been. Of course Obama is not going to do all that he says. This is a campaign, not reality. After McCainÕs pick for Vice-President, itÕs clear his wanting to win is outweighing his common-sense. For someone standing next in line to become President, experience is obviously not one of his main concerns. Losing the credibility of that argument against Obama has made him a bigger loser than I had anticipated. And heÕs not a very convincing reformer, of either Washington or the Republican Party. He has been in Washington for 28 years. What has he been doing all that time?  His maverick, reformer strategy smacks of fantasy and self-indulgent nonsense.


-The question remains, is there anything that Galesburg can do to save itself?: The answer is Yes, But only with your help. The answer comes in our diversity and willingness to explore new ideas, new dreams, new realities, engaging everyone, regardless of color, religion, age, sex, sexual preference, whether rich or poor, new to town or a life-long resident. Our prosperity, or lack thereof, will come from our unity and the richness of our differences, not our likenesses or willingness to accept the status quo.