Leave It To Peever

­­ Bumper sticker of the week: Don't gain the world and lose your soul. Wisdom is better than silver and gold. --Bob Marley

­­ Quote of the week: ''Throughout my life, until this very moment, whatever virtue I have accomplished, I dedicate to the welfare of all beings.

May the roots of suffering diminish. May warfare, violence, neglect, indifference, and addictions decrease.

May the wisdom and compassion of all beings increase, now and in the future. May we clearly see all the barriers we erect between ourselves and others to be as insubstantial as our dreams.

May we appreciate the great perfection of all phenomena.

May we continue to open our hearts and minds, in order to work ceaselessly for the benefit of all beings.

May we go to places that scare us.

May we lead the life of a warrior.''--

The Places That Scare You, Pema Chodron

­­ Over the years I've been writing for The Zephyr, I've heard a lot about how negative we are. ''You bash everything.'' ''You don't agree with anything.'' I do agree we are pretty hard on the status quo. I would prefer to call our questioning ''positive doubt.'' It helps get rid of complacency. Positive doubt does not believe the community gets any better by staying the same.

­­ If I hear any of the rich, Republican farmers in Knox County bitching about the poor getting welfare, they can expect me to get up one side of them and down the other. These guys cry and bitch and moan all the way to the bank, compliments of us, the taxpayers. Some of these guys, like Block and Curry and Shreeves and Inness, get more than a hundred welfare recipients would. Life is great down on the corporate farm. The Register-Mail thinks it's all well and good, that it's inevitable. I think it stinks like a hog farm.

­­ TIF districts don't work. There still is no evidence to suggest they do. Every economic development person in the state of Illinois will swear that they do, but none can show it on paper. A recent study done by the University of Illinois continues to suggest they don't work. In a majority of the TIF districts they looked at, two factors jumped out at the researchers: 1. TIF districts were being established illegally. Most were not established in ''blighted'' areas. Galesburg is famous for this violation of state law. 2. Development occurred more rapidly outside of the TIF districts, or where TIF districts were not used at all. The study also concluded that municipally established TIF districts were unfair to other taxing bodies, and that they should have a say in their establishment. I would imagine the Galesburg City Council has not seen this study. They're probably too busy counting all the money we're making from the Regency Motel TIF.

­­ Sixteen ways to improve your life:

1.Spend more time singing.

2.Spend more time dancing.

3.Write a book about your life.

4.Cook a meal for someone you don't like.

5.Read my new book, ''How I got over feeling guilty about breathing.''

6.When you feel the urge to lie, go to law school.

7. Help someone to help themselves, kind of like the farmers help themselves to our money.

8. Buy a new car. As a gesture to help the struggling auto industry, offer to pay $3,000 extra.

9.Hug your children. Then check your back pocket to make sure your wallet is still there.

10.Pray, pray, pray. Then tee it up.

11.Don't smoke, drink, or have sex. Or is that drink, have sex, and then smoke. I get confused.

12.Go to Swedoughs in the morning and listen to the sound advice you will get. It's better than calling a psychic on the phone, but not quite as good as the fortune cookies at New China.

13.Start exercising. First, get up off the couch, take a deep breath, now sit back down.

14.Read something worthwhile. That eliminates anything you can buy at the checkout counter at the grocery store.

15.Go back to school, preferably not while in prison.

16.And finally, think positive, for it is positive thinking that has gotten us where we are.

Uploaded to The Zephyr Online October 17, 2001

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