Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year!

As I type these words, the sun is setting on 2009. May 2010 bring you much happiness and joy!
My old stomping grounds are in Southwest Colorado. Daughter Kim took these photos there this week when she and Jon and Greg and Sara accompanied Colleen on a business trip there. The scenery is among the most spectacular in Colorado. Unfortunately, you can't eat the scenery.

The town of Telluride has spectacular views.
One place you must visit in Southwest Colorado is Mesa Verde National Park, once home to the Anasazi Indians many hundreds of years ago.
This National Park official keeps an eye on Sara, who no doubt sees lots of climbing opportunities.
God bless our troops and all who are working to keep us safe from those who wish to kill us in the name of Allah!
Greg and Jon wish you a Happy New Year, and in honor of the resting Rush Limbaugh, I say Ditto!

Friday, December 25, 2009

We can relate!

If you are enjoying the peace and beauty of a white Christmas....
If you love your animals....
If you have a little boy who knows how to love and live....Please click on his card to read it clearly
If you have a litle girl with an unending imagination, who can play for hours with little toys....
If you have boys who love Lego....
Jon and Greg play for hours happily and quietly building and sharing Lego pieces.
If you are missing a loved one who is away from home....

If you have teens....
(cartoons by Jerry Scott and Jim Vorgman)

If you shed some tears this Christmas.... We lost Kim's puppy, Holly, on Christmas Eve. Parvo, we think, and a weak heart.
Merry Christmas from our house to yours, and thank you for being such good friends in the blogosphere!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

A hand print and a poem

This hand print poem was obviously written by Sara's teacher. We have never been concerned about handprints anywhere. Moreover, you can see by the size of this handprint that she is not small. She is at least one full head taller than any other child in her class. The pediatrician informed us that she is in the 97th percentile in both height and weight. She has not an ounce of fat on her. We think Shaquille O'Neil may be her birthfather.

She also can hold her own against her brothers and me in games of Connect Four. Like Shaquille, she knows how to block the other player's moves!

Monday, December 14, 2009


Kim has purchased a new puppy named Holly. She is a Burnese Mountain Dog. I think they like each other!

Christmas at the O.K. Corral

Tonight was the K-3 Christmas play, so Greg and Sara got to dress as they normally would, in western attire, because the play was entitled Christmas at the O.K. Corral.

After the play I browsed in Greg's classroom and saw this poem he had written (be sure to click on the poem to read it), and this photo of him in a shoe-shaped frame.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Jon's (Fourth Grade) Science Experiment: "Music and Milk"

The Hypothesis
My hypothesis is that we would get the best production of milk with Christmas carols. The three types of music I used were Christmas, country, and rock. I got this hypothesis from research I did, in which I learned that cows hate anger. The author of the research was Temple Grandin of Colorado State University, who wrote a book entitled Animals Make Us Human.

The Experiment
We wanted to find out which type of music inspired the cow to produce the most milk. First, I rounded up our cow. Then I put her in the milking stand. I plugged a radio in next to the milking stand. For each of three milkings , Mom and I fed her one-half pounds of grain. First we listened to rock. The cow gave us ten cups of milk in the first five minutes of milking. Next we listened to country. The cow gave nineteen cups of milk in the first five minutes. Lastly, we played Christmas, and got seven cups of milk in five minutes.

Each time we finished milking we poured the milk from the steel bucket into a filter, which got all non-milk substances out of the milk. We then poured the milk into a half-gallon mason jar, and we measured the milk.

I took notes through the whole experiment. The diet of the cow stayed the same throughout the three milking experiments.

My results were not at all what I had expected. My hypothesis was proven wrong. The cow produced the least amount of milk with Christmas music. I know the results are accurate, because my mom and I measured the milk “letdown” with mason jars. I used two books to do the research. They were Animals Make Us Human by Temple Grandin and Keeping a Family Cow by Joan S. Grohman.

(Now if only the Global Warming "Scientists" jetting to Copenhagen would just emulate Jon's integrity in their research!)

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Sunday School Lessons

Jon: "Dad, today in church I learned about the pathways to Heaven and to Hell."
Me: "What are they, son?"
Jon: "The pathway to Hell is wide, like I-25 going into Denver. The pathway to Heaven is narrow, filled with rocks and dirt, just like the county road that leads to our house! Lots of people choose the wide path, but few choose the narrow one."

Greg: "I learned about Hannah having sex! She and some guy had sex, she gave birth to a baby, and they took the baby to church."

Sara: "I was the only one who knew about the purple candle, so I raised my hand, and the teacher called on me. I told the teacher it was about Jesus, who died for us. The teacher said I was right, so I just kept talking on and on and on."

Me: "I believe you, Sara, and I am glad you knew the answer to the teacher's question."

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

We had a lot to be thankful about this year. The only thing wrong with the meal was that we only bought two bottles of Martinelli Apple Cider! Should have bought a case! The funnest thing we did was play a card game called "Bullshit." The teenagers taught it to the rest of us, and the whole family played. Starting with ace as a one, the first player puts down all her aces. The next player puts down all his twos. If someone thinks that player does not have any twos, they can yell out "Bullshit!" If the person who yelled bullshit was right, then the bluffer had to take all the cards in the pile. If wrong, the caller-outer had to take the whole pile. The kids loved being able to yell out bullshit in front of their pious parents. It was non-stop hilarity. The next player puts down all her threes, and so on through kings and back again to aces. It's a great way to be on your guard against bullshit, something we all need in today's political climate.

Greg keeps a close eye on those free range turkeys, who think they were included in Obama's pardon, but what they don't know is that Christmas is coming!

It was a long 365 day wait since the fifth birthday, but number six finally arrived this month for Sara.
The alpacas could not figure out how this lone turkey remained free on Thanksgiving day!
Sara's mean parents would not let her start decorating the indoor Christmas tree (a potted pine we will plant outside), so she decorated the cottonwood tree down by the barn, as Rosie looked on.

Monday, November 23, 2009

The year in a photo collage

Daughter Kim likes to create photo collages. These are some of the photos she and I took in 2009. Click on the photo to enlarge.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Pretentious Elitism

While we are comparing the National Enquirer with supposedly more professional "news" magazines like Time, I want to make one more point. Who was it that alerted us to the fact that John Edwards, the pretentious elitist who ran as V.P. candidate with perhaps the most pretentious elitist ever to appear on the American political scene, John Kerry, was screwing around on his wife while she was supporting him, despite the fact that she was suffering with cancer? That's right, it was the National Enquirer.

Okay, maybe Al Gore equals Kerry in pretentious elitism. Mike Rosen has more on that subject in today's Denver Post.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Which publication is trash?

In the supermarket the other day I noticed Time Magazine has published a special edition about the year 1989. Of course there was Tiennamen Square, with the famous photo of the lone man standing in front of the line of tanks. Then, there were photos of Germans tearing down the Berlin wall. Of course, there was a photo of our beloved President Ronald Reagan demanding that Mr. Gorbachav "tear down this wall!

Then I started to read the accompanying story. The bastards that wrote the story pointed out that Reagan gave his speech several months before the wall was actually torn down, and that there was "no evidence" that Reagan's words and actions had anything to do with the tearing down of the wall! I put that piece of crap magazine down and picked up the National Enquirer! At least I remember that the Enquirer got it right about O.J. Simpson. Remember when Simpson said he would never wear those "ugly ass" Bruno Magli shoes that the killer of his ex-wife wore? The Enquirer dug down into their archives and found a photo of Simpson prowling the sidelines as a sideline football reporter for NBC, wearing Bruno Magli shoes, the same size as the killer's footprints!

Friday, November 06, 2009

Wake up, America!

How the hell can this happen at Fort Hood? Diversity and multi-culturalism have even infected our military. You just cannot tell me that nobody ever heard this insane psychiatrist spout off his insane jihadist-supporting views. He openly expressed his admiration of suicide bombers. He urged all infidels to convert to Islam. It does not surprise me that no other mental health professional who knew this man would speak up. The entire mental health profession walks lock-step in multi-cultural political correctness, conditioned by their training to ignore warning signs. Do we now get to hold them responsible to some degree?

One person interviewed on the base said, "I wish his name was Smith." What? So your illusions about the benefits of multi-culturalism could not be challenged? They say he must have had PTSD: from what, living in Maryland and Texas? Don't tell me this despicable piece of garbage was a victim of any psychiatric disease! The only mental illness I can see in all of this is what I hear coming from our media today, pretending that Islamic ideology is not a danger to us. One media pundit coined a new psychiatric diagnosis: PretraumatS Stress Disorder, because the killer had recently been told that he would soon be deployed overseas! I kid you not! As Mark Stein noted today, don't worry, those of you with Pretraumatic Stress Disorder: Obama/Pelosicare will cover it!

Why is our military unarmed? I understand that the heroine who finally shot this scum was a female civilian police officer!

Will this finally wake up our people?

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Are elections relevant?

Herbert Schlossberg shows in his 1983 book Idols for Destruction how the czars and bureaucrats of the Utopian elite "cash in on our guilt" for polluting the earth, for example. They "do not merely regulate industries, disburse funds, and enforce laws;" they determine what choices we have in almost all areas of our lives. But, Schlossberg reminds us that "there is a higher law that relativizes all statutes and sovereigns. And that is a law which says above all that the state is not God."

Two states held gubernatorial elections yesterday. Voters in both states reversed the 2008 electoral trends. Or, did they? In 2008 voters threw out the bums who had been running things. Now Obama and his fellow Dems have held control of the White House, Senate, and House of Representatives for nine months. Voters once again voted for candidates representing the party out of power.

The question remaining, though, is this: are elections increasingly irrelevant to what government actually does? Has the "new class" found a vehicle for giving its values the force of law? By becoming czars and utilizing administrative fiat "to bring their socialist vision into being" will the elites make sure that no significant changes in the direction of liberty actually take place in Virginia, New Jersey, and the rest of the country? Or, will the tea party movement continue to grow until we get a government of, by, and for the people?

The next year is going to be very interesting. For example, what will Obama now do in Copenhagen next month? Will he sign away our sovereignty on the issue of global climate control?

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

The illusions of compassion and rationality

I am amazed at the prescience of Herbert Schlossberg. Writing Idols for Destruction in 1983, he has captured what has happened to America in 2009! He writes about how unelected leftist intellectual elites gain power in bureaucracies. Like the Pharisees of old, they convince the people that they have wisdom no others possess. Never ask them about their track record, though, writes Schlossberg, because "it is a series of disguised disasters; just accept on faith that they have the secret to life." Their expertise is not value-free. They attach their expertise to a social movement, such as Marxism or socialism. The compassion and rationality they seem to promote are illusions; it is all about power and control. Again, Schlossberg: "The elites and the bureacracy both prosper as the private sector declines and as the state absorbs and expends a greater proportion of the national wealth. They seek to crush all opposition; their rule is incompatible with freedom."

Are bureaucrats people who are just silently obeying orders? No, writes Schlossberg, bureaucrats believe they are the law! The way to bring the socialist vision into being is through administrative fiat. Elections become increasingly irrelevant to what the government actually does. "Bureaucrats shuffle not paper, but people," writes Schlossberg. Suddenly we wake up to find that we have left ourselves defenseless against our supposed protectors!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

"Disheartened?" Or "Angry?"

Peggy Noonan is given a prominent place in the Wall Street Journal's opinion pages, because she always seems to have something important to say. In yesterday's column she wonders how this administration could be so "callous" that they don't even seem to care that so many people have become "disheartened." Rush Limbaugh corrected Peggy: "We are not disheartened; we are angry!"

Noonan further seems incredulous that the administration doesn't even seem "worried about the impact of what they're doing." I've got news for you, Peggy: looking at results or consequences of their programs is never part of the liberals' agenda!

To deal with callous people in power, we need the leadership of equally aggressive, equally determined people. People like Rush Limbaugh. People like Peggy Noonan can write about it from a distance, safely ensconced in their libraries.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

"The greater the pretentions to righteousness, the greater the potential for evil"

If Barack Obama is the savior, then salvation can be found only in becoming a follower of Obama and his government allies. Herbert Schlossberg explains in Idols for Destruction that the state becomes an idol in the hands of the "theologians of political redemption." As much as we might prefer to live in a free society, we must now learn to accept a social order in which some people force their conception of the "good life" on the rest of us. This coercion is necessary for the achievement of "progress." Try as you might to hold on to your freedom, you must come to realize that we have many "crises" from which we need to be saved. Schlossberg writes that "it was once considered immoral to take a person's property for the benefit of others by threatening the use of force, but now inequality is advanced as a greater evil than theft." State confiscation is advanced to the "pinnacle of moral rectitude."

Although Obama seems to be in large part a pragmatist, he, Reid, and Pelosi do seem convinced that what they are trying to do in nationalizing health care will be good for us, thus strengthening their determination. Schlossberg reminds us that "Jesus told His followers that their persecutors would think they were serving God (John 16:2). Solzhenitsyn tells of Eleanor Roosevelt's visit to the labor camp where he was incarcerated. Schlossberg notes that "she reported that it was a humane institution for curing criminals."

What is the affinity evil has with professions of good? C.S. Lewis, in an essay he called "Lillies that Fester," argued that the more pretentious the visions of rulers, the more defiling the rule is likely to be. If there were ever a ruler more pretentious than Obama, I cannot think who it might be.

Schlossberg writes,
"The paternal state not only feeds its children, but nurtures, educates, comforts, and disciplines them, providing all they need for their security. This appears to be a mildly insulting way to treat adults, but it is really a great crime because it transforms the state from being a gift of God, given to protect us against violence, into an idol. It supplies us with all blessings, and we look to it for all our needs. Once we sink to that level, as Lewis says, there is no point in telling state officials to mind their own business. "Our whole lives are their business," (C.S. Lewis, in God in the Dock). The paternalism of the state is that of the bad parent who wants his children dependent on him forever. That is an evil impulse. The good parent prepares his children for independence, trains them to make responsible decisions, knows that he harms them by not helping them break loose. The paternal state thrives on dependency. When the dependents free themselves, it loses power. It is, therefore, parasitic on the very persons whom it turns into parasites. Thus, the state and its dependents march symbiotically to destruction."

Obama's Director of Communications, Anita Dunn, gave a speech to high school graduates in which she extolled Chairman Mao for his determination and perseverance. Mao, like Obama, was expected to save his people from all problems. A common proverb was, "We must study the works of Chairman Mao each day. If we miss only one day the problems pile up. If we miss two days we fall back. If we miss three days, we can no longer live."

How about the way Obama is ubiquitous as our Big Brother or our Father, Mr. Cool, while Rahm Emanuel's obscenities propel the engine driving the bus and pulling the strings. To these builders of utopia, everything is possible, and they feel free to attack anyone who raises questions (Fox News, Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck). Schlossberg warns us that "the greater the pretentions to righteousness, it seems, the greater the potential for evil."

The Christian perspective versus the humanitarian perspective

Does toleration have limits? Are weakness, impotence, and dependence signs of moral superiority? Are all cultures equal in value? Are Christian values superior to any others? Should we discriminate against our most productive citizens? Who are they? Is the exercise of power the real aim of humanitarians who use the state to promulgate their policies? If an older adult is suffering from poor health, should we "ration" his health care, increase his suffering, and perhaps let him die? Is all human life sacred, including unborn babies, disabled people and old people?

The above questions were just some I had while continuing to read Herbert Schlossberg's Idols for Destruction. Schlossberg writes that the two men who received the Nobel prize for discovering the DNA molecule, James Watson and Francis Crick, expressed "humanitarian" ideas about human life. Watson suggested that we change the legal definition of a "person" to be applicable only to infants older than three days. Crick called for a new ethical system, featuring abortion and infanticide, which would make it mandatory for all persons older than eighty years of age to be put to death!

Schlossberg points out that "the humanitarian ethic wishes to restrict the right to live and expand the right to die - and to kill." On the other hand, the Christian view is that "death is the enemy, the last enemy to be destroyed (1 Cor 15;56). In the Christian perspective the only comfort in death comes from the assurance of resurrection."

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Why do they need health insurance?

What group of Americans receives more hospital care than any other group? Those living below the poverty line! When the poor get sick, they go to the hospital and use the emergency room. All hospitals in America are required by the federal government to post a sign (in English and Spanish) prominently that informs people that they cannot be refused service because they are unable to pay. So, why do they need health insurance?

Thought for today

The longer you hold on to some perceived injury, the longer you allow the person who injured you to control you! Let it go! Don't wallow in victimhood!

Don't let Democrats or other statists convince you that you are somebody's victim. All they are interested in is power and control over you. Do what you have to do to get out of victimhood status. Believe in yourself. Take advantage of the opportunities this country makes possible, while they are still available. Thank God for the gifts He has given you, and seek the wisdom and guidance of the Holy Spirit.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

"At the first sign of a cold or the flu..."

I stopped to talk with an 87-year-old woman who was purchasing several containers of hydrogen peroxide. I asked her if she was a terrorist (terror suspect Zazi was found to have purchased large quantities of hydrogen peroxide from beauty supply stores). The woman told me that she was not a terrorist, but she "wouldn't mind knowing how to make a bomb!" I recognized then that she had a wonderful sense of humor, and I asked her some more questions about herself. She told me that she buys "tons of hydrogen peroxide," because it keeps her from getting colds or the flu. At the first sign of a cold or flu, she puts "five drops of hydrogen peroxide in each ear." She never gets colds or the flu, she says. Of course, her hearing isn't too good.

Christian love versus altruism and resentiment

A friend at work gave me a book to read, Idols for Destruction by Herbert Schlossberg. Schlossberg's idea for the book seems to come from the Biblical story in Hosea 8:4, "...they made idols for their own destruction." In his chapter on Idols of Humanity, Schlossberg quotes from a book entitled Resentiment by Max Scheler. Resentiment "begins with perceived injury that may have a basis in fact, but more often is occasioned by envy for the possessions or the qualities possessed by another person." Schlossberg writes that altruism "has its source in this poisonous brew." Altruism "permits demeaning the successful, or those who display any form of superiority, by pulling over that act the mask of concern for the poor and weak."

I am afraid this describes the work of my friend Saul Alinsky. I came to realize that Christian love is something very different than the hatred of the people in power espoused by the Alinsky method of organizing. As Schlossberg writes, Christian love "avoids helping the weak as a means of causing harm to the strong." Christian love asks what needs to happen to enable the weak to become strong. The answer usually lies in what opportunities can be made available to that person. What that person does with the opportunities is up to that person.
Rosie, surrounded by poodles and a Burnese Mountain dog, stays close to the grain buckets. We get spent grain from a Colorado brewery. Rosie is more than a little fond of it.
The egg ladies are wondering what happened to the sunshine.
We're looking forward to Thanksgiving this year!
Spot likes to stand near the turkeys and ducks.
It is a dark and gloomy morning today, as we are expecting up to two feet of snow beginning at midnight tonight. Yesterday I was stopped at a light behind this tea party guy. I honked and waved, and he waved back.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Restore your faith and hope

Do your sinuses need clearing out, like mine? Read Woody Paige's column in today's Denver Post. It is about how a previously immature, but sensationally gifted, athlete has befriended a 12-year-old girl who has a rare disease called dysautonomia.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Comparing and contrasting two types of parents

Colorado again was in the world's spotlight last week when a six-year-old boy was believed to be aloft over the high plains in his father's flying saucer-shaped helium balloon. I highly recommend a column in today's Denver Post entitled A better image of parenthood by Tina Griego. In her column Ms. Griego compares and contrasts the efforts of the sheriff's investigator who was first to arrive on the scene after the balloon's landing with the actions of the boy's father in using his boy as a prop to achieve his own goal of starring in a reality t.v. show. Just go the Denver Post on-line to read her column.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Are you ready for some pictures?

Today was just a wonderful day. It was the first Sunday in over one year that I did not have to work. We headed for the mountains. The teenagers skied. The rest of us headed over the continental divide to look for beaver ponds and other lesser forms of civilization. On the way I could not resist poking the camera out the window to capture some world class scenery. I had not been up in the mountains for many, many months, and it was pure joy to drink in God's majestic creations once again.

After we climb for about fifteen minutes, this magnificent view of the mountains appears on I-70.
Sara knows masks and Halloween go together, but I think we can do better than a ski mask.
We drop the teenagers off at the Loveland Ski Area.
If you have a good imagination, you don't really need skis to enjoy the slopes!
Just over the Continental Divide from the Loveland Ski Area is the Arapahoe Basin Ski Area.
The view at the top of the Continental Divide
My athlete, farmer, beauty queen wife carries Sara around the muddy meadow leading up to the beaver ponds, because Sara was not feeling up to par.
Didn't see any beavers, but we are going to bring fishing tackle next time, because Jon spotted some big trout!
The view from the beaver ponds:
As the sun began to set over Lake Dillon, we remembered we had two very tired teenagers we needed to pick up at the ski area!