Thursday, July 31, 2008

The Summer Evening (a modern poem for modern readers)

Mother Nature has given me
two of her furloughed sentries,
standing proud a mere nine feet apart
with branches and roots akimbo
for me to climb if I so choose

I say, "No thanks, Big Momma
I'll take a pass this time.
See, I have this bunch of interlaced twine,
and when I tie it between your soldiers
it will suspend my grateful gluts."

And there in the gentle twilight breeze
I lie slowly swinging
birds and bugs winging,
singing and zinging
their soothing songs putting me more and more at ease

Then, as I descend ever lower
who fires up his damned lawn mower
but my next door neighbor Arne Marsh
and I don't want to come across harsh,
but this guy has a way of making
even the best days a little worse

His eyes are too close and so very little
when he talks it's too loud
and it always involves spittle
He let my kid taste beer
without ever even asking
I've seen him do the unthinkable
but am too kind to go into detail

Then, as I'm about to go inside
I hear a strange noise and Arne's muffled cry
It looks like just below his right knee
old Arne's been cropped
and I'd get up to help...
if the mower hadn't stopped

I hear birds again, and the peepers were calling
the peace and the quiet were nearly appalling
that is if old Arne would quit bellyaching
but I'm in my hammock and I can't be bothered

I'm drifting off to sleep now and Arne seems to be too
his whimpering stopped within a minute or two
he's probably fine but I'll find out when I wake
if I'm feeling real nice I'll help him with the rake
and figure out some way to fashion the handle
into a peg leg or something

Thursday, July 17, 2008

You Can't Make This Up (Sorry to get a little serious here)

This is an actual editorial from the Ironton Tribune:

Public shouldn’t fall for Obama’s rhetoric

Wednesday, July 16, 2008 11:36 AM EDT
The political correctness thought police won’t tolerate what you’re about to read.

I’m throwing the “bogus” flag upon the presidential bid of Marxist-Socialist turned Democrat Senator from Illinois, Barack Hussein Obama.

Somewhere around 75 or so years ago, from out of nowhere a stealth politician arose.

He too sought the nomination for his nation’s highest office; refreshingly different from other politicians of the era. This Austrian born wallpaper hanger’s background is too much like our Illinois lawyer’s. Both reared in single parent households; neither brought much of a resume on the campaign trail. The one hung wallpaper the other hung “present” votes. Neither has an authentic performance record for which the electorate might judge the candidate.

Our lawyer turned Senator keeps some odd company — maybe we should pay more attention to the “community” Mr. Obama keeps as a “Community Activist.” Because the company the paper hanger kept, unfortunately, wasn’t important to the inspired masses of three-quarters of a century ago. This clean and articulate new politician was active in a community of Marx inspired Socialists.

The paper hanger, just as the lawyer, delivered wonderful, inspirational public speeches. Both spoke of the “change” and “hope” their election might bring if people would “believe in” their country. Steeped in a similar class warfare rhetoric; their speeches emphasize the rich were keeping the poor people down.

Meanwhile, energy prices were raging out of control. If the streetcar was late, you’d miss a bank deposit; so now you’ll get more warmth from burning your wheelbarrow full of bank notes than from the coal you’d purchase by the bill’s face value. “Change” would improve the transportation infrastructure.

And in both cases “change” means free health care for everyone, increased equal rights, a retirement income, guaranteed wages, unemployment benefits, free child care, and more gun control. Trains and streetcars would run on time only if their party was elected. The list went on and on. The candidate gave people “hope.” It was the kind of “change” people might “believe in.”

Unfortunately, for both cases, the mass media is mesmerized by the candidate’s rhetoric and oratory style, instead of questioning the unknown candidate’s background extensively.

Without a track record to judge the man by, people simply fall for the rhetoric. The German people had to “believe.” They wanted “change.” And through “hope,” they only had to “believe” what Adolph Hitler and the Nazis said; without questioning what Hitler and his Marxist-Socialists pals had really designed behind the scenes.

Certainly, it was “change.” Did Germany “believe” this might happen? Was this the kind of “change” everybody would “hope” for and “believe in?” These are “just words,” as Senator Obama says. Relativism, whatever anyone wants the “words” to mean.

According to a Daniel Flynn expose titled Obama’s Boys of Summer, ( the lawyer’s community is the Who’s Who of the 1968 Democratic Convention Marxist-Socialist inspired Students for a Democratic Society and the Weather Underground movements.

Michael Klonsky, Carl Davidson, Bob Pardun, Paul Buhle, Tom Hayden, Todd Gitlin, plus Mickey and Dick Flacks. Yes, we ought to know more about this “community” of Marx inspired Socialists our lawyer Barry is “active” in.

The Nazis always knew what their version of Adolph’s “words” meant to them. To the public these “words” were vague platitudes which could be interpreted in any feel good way. Nobody cared to ask what Mr. Hitler’s “words” meant. And too little was known about the National Socialist community he actively kept.

Later, in the spirit of “fairness,” the opposition press was silenced. Guns were controlled, religion was suppressed; and the world again experienced what a Marxist-Socialist actually means by “change.”

Joseph Benning is a U.S. veteran who is originally from Illinois but now calls Lawrence County home. He and his wife have an agribusiness in Lawrence Township. Benning can be reached at

That's it. I didn't make that up. I couldn't have made that up. In case you missed it, Benning is comparing Obama to Hitler. Let's be clear: Both Obama and Hitler have/had a reputation for inspirational oratory. In my mind that's really where the comparison ends.

I think that Hitler's name and legacy are really thrown around a little lightly. Let's not forget what this man did. I would be willing to stake anything that Obama will do NOTHING of the sort if he is to win the presidency. Obama's track record may be short, too short for many, but I would point out that Obama has a degree in Foreign Policy, and he was a CONSTITUTIONAL LAW professor at the University of Chicago (which is actually quite conservative as far as prestigious American universities go).

Obama's qualifications are many. Not the least of which is the fact that he grew up in a predominantly Muslim nation. So many people are afraid that he is a closet Muslim, but in my way of thinking, this only shows me that he has a deeper understanding of Islam, and, possibly, what it is that could be the stimulus for the terrorist organizations. The overuse of Obama's middle name is an indication of xenophobia and racism that I got sick of a long time ago.

I could go on about this, literally, for hours, but I want to keep this brief, just to bring this to your attention. I'm sure there are as many unfair and unfounded things being said about John McCain, and they're no less-wrong than this. I've sent this to a lot of you already, but there is a good interview by Fareed Zakaria, who is the international affairs editor for Newsweek, on Here's the link. I'd highly recommend it, and as always thanks for reading.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

First Serial Post: Communication Revolution (or "Why Cell Phones are the Best Thing EVAR!!!"

From the dawn of time, man has felt the need to keep in touch with friends and family. Instantaneous communication over long distances began with Adam and Eve throwing different colored fruits into the air over the garden of Eden to send messages.

Lengthy research has given us clues as to what the different airborne fruits communicated. When flung above the garden's canopy, a red apple meant, "Hello. How are you." A green apple typically meant, "I'm fine, a little chilly (I'm naked), but I'm fine." A green banana meant, "Look busy, God is coming." A yellow banana meant, "Can you give me a ride to the store?" A peeled banana meant, "Watch your step when you come over here."

Since that time, many advances have revolutionized long-distance communications. Smoke signals, the Pony Express, and the invention of the telephone have all made profound changes in the way we keep in touch. It wasn't long after Bell's first phone call, that people were yearning for more freedom. They longed to cut the wires that bound them to their land-line telephones, and before you could say, "self-important," the cell phone was vibrating in every yuppie's fanny pack.

The beauty of the cell phone was that you could be reached at any time, no matter where you were. Out of town? No problem. At the movies? In class? Church? Surgery? None of these places can keep you out of the loop. You'll find out the minute your friend sees a three-legged dog precariously squatting to relieve itself. You'll know immediately when your buddy's a little drunk and has decided to scroll through his contacts.

I haven't even touched on all of the wonderful implications of mobile phone technology. I would be remiss to overlook text messaging. Friends and families can now send each other short, typed messages, 160 characters at a time, to make conversations that could have happened in a matter of seconds last for a glorious 10 minutes of thumb-blistering button tapping. The best part of all this, is that you can do it all in the car, even driving in rush-hour traffic. Give yourself a break from minding the hazards of the road and looking for bicyclists to text a buddy about your dinner plans. That's the beauty of the cell phone.

For all of its benefits, the cell phone revolution has brought about some negative societal norms. I'll be discussing those in part II of this series "Vibrate Mode Totally Sucks,"(due out within a week).

Thanks again for reading. I know you're just bored at work, but pretend you could had LOTS of other things to do and that this is becoming a needed distraction

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Happy Fourth of July

There are more posts on the way, but in the meantime all of us here at Josh by Himself would like to wish you and your family a fun and "safe" holiday.