Friday, July 31, 2009

Endeavor touches down safely to earth

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Congratulations to the incredible team behind the Endeavor, and the brave crew.

Here's a link to the NASA site to catch the latest updates:

Again, I am honored to live in an era that saw the dawn of manned space flight. It is my deep wish that our time in space is only just beginning.



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Monday, July 20, 2009

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The old diary with the cracked white vinyl cover is somewhere in my garage; this I know. I've run across it since moving here. It's not something I'd ever throw away primarily because in it I wrote about the first moon walk while it was happening.

My hope was to find that diary in time to scan my multi-page entry for July 20, 1969 and share it here in Future World.

No such luck, but I guess I've been busy. We live in strange, rapidly-evolving times with too many earthbound dangers and no moon quest to dazzle us.

Coming to grips with a time span like forty years seems like the first order of business, but it's unnerving to face head on. At first I try to reason with those memories, hold them up to the light like so many glass cat eye marbles, but instead it all comes at me achingly and at once. That one night could be refracted into a long meditation, but I'll discipline it into a cluster of fragments.

My sixteenth birthday was two months away.

Summers in my home town were always hot, and my memory of that night merges in that respect with countless others: the barest tease of coolness arriving only well after the last rays of that day’s sun. If it had been any other night and we'd wanted to cool off, we'd drive to get icy mugs of car-hop root beer, or go to the library.

On this particular night we are all at home, of course: Mama, Daddy, my sister, and me. Every person I knew would be in their homes as well, all of us excited and waiting around the curved glass screens of heavy television sets.

The room is dark. I have a can of Shasta soda half finished and warming in my hand, and we’re waiting. In his corner chair, my father has a camera ready to take pictures of the television’s images.

What first strikes me now, beyond the sharp melancholy for that all but forgotten shared sense of pride, and wonder, and endless possibility, is that we could achieve so much with so little, and what that said about us, and how that has changed. Our technology was most certainly crude by today's standards, making a mission to the moon all the more heroic, a collective effort that spoke volumes about who we were, and proof of our rich, vast sense of possibility and even grandeur.

As we sat together that hot July night, the sleeping moon of Aristotle and Shakespeare and a million children's drawings had finally been prodded, transformed into ghostly dust under an astronaut's boot, and a brilliant slice of white on countless cathode ray tubes. The jumble of ideas it seemed to suggest was intoxicating. I couldn’t shake the realization that we’d crawled out of our caves, organized our activities in such a way that it culminated in this breathtaking moment.

After the first footsteps and the moving words I'll always feel proud of, when it felt like the world would never be the same again, I slipped outside, alone. The street, usually filled with summer restlessness, was quieter than I had ever known. I looked up and stared.

Once back in the house, the images were still being transmitted. The acute joy of it made me feel inexplicably sad, and in the midst of all that, I recall wondering how many times I would recall that night in the years ahead.

By the light of the televised moon, I wrote in my diary, It is beyond belief. It still is.

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Saturday, July 18, 2009

Smoking gun: President caught in huge health care lie

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Democrats Refuse to Let Americans Keep the Insurance They Have and Like

2 out of 3 will lose their health insurance

Democrats voted against an amendment offered by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) to strike the government-run plan.

When speaking before the American Medical Association, President Obama stated that, “If you like your health care plan, you'll be able to keep your health care plan, period. No one will take it away, no matter what.”

However, the Democrats government-run plan breaks this promise.

According to two independent studies: The government-run plan will result in more than 100 million Americans losing their current private health coverage.

This amendment to let Americans keep the insurance they like by striking the government-run plan was defeated, 25-15

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This nightmare scenario is really happening, my friends- socialist utopians are intent on dismantling our health care system and subsitute one like the disastrous plans of Canada and the UK-- plans that put bureacrats in charge of health care and cause deadly rationing and delays... plans that shift health care away from the elderly and those who pay into the system in order to address a mere 3% of the population-- many of whom aren't even U. S. citizens.

Unless we demand our representatives stop it.

Begin by writing a letter to your family doctor right away.

For more information, try the following links (will be adding to this list; check back):

Time is of the essence.

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Tuesday, July 14, 2009

One Giant Leap for Mankind

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Independence Day

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Like so many of us, I'm taking the occasion of our nation's birthday to express my gratitude. What better way to show our appreciation for our freedom than by heading outdoors and relaxing with friends and family, maybe gathering to watch fireworks.

It's been a rough year, but Americans are a positive people. We make the best of both gray and sunny days.

Our founding fathers probably did too good of a job in securing freedom for us. They forged the most significant national documents in the history of civilization, laying the groundwork for the United States of America to arise and lead the world in strength, freedom, and opportunity. We have always taken these documents seriously, and built our nation upon them.

Not that we didn’t have some painful lessons to learn along the way. We would falter painfully. We weren’t always kind and tolerant of one another, and still are not fully beyond these problems. But we learn from our mistakes, seek with earnest enthusiasm to right our wrongs, and with this philosophy firmly in place have slowly but surely assumed our legitimate place as the world’s beacon of hope.

Much of the rest of the world limps along under varying levels of tyranny, or stagnates under various forms of statism, and shivers fearfully under the watchful eye of restrictive government. But here, we can still speak out, we can still assemble. We have had dark moments, but we have never seen our streets bloodied like Tehran has recently seen. We do not drive tanks over citizens or gun them down in churches, or strap bombs to children. While the UN gets together for wine and cheese and tsk-tsks nations for breeches of human rights, we’ve stepped up and helped people around the world with manpower, money, goods, leadership, and military help. We've done this again and again.

Here in the US, we champion anyone who wants to make something of himself, so much so that it is a key element of our national identity. Success stories abound across race and gender, and we assume our children will have at least the opportunities we did.

This is why it is hard for many Americans to see just how bad things are getting. We know the situation is grim, but somehow can’t believe an economic downturn can be any worse than anything we’ve endured in the past. We speak of pendulums swinging, of tough times and recoveries, of periodic shifts from liberal to conservative leadership. We think despite some serious setbacks, everything is eventually-- automatically-- going to be just fine. We don't quite see how the very ground is slipping away under our feet. It seems impossible that the leaders of the free world aren't acting in our best interest and upholding our most precious documents.

But never has it been truer than it now is: freedom is never free.

You are good, honest, trusting people.

But if someone you know and love is urging you to look at how bad things are getting, give them an ear. Thoughtful citizens are seeing some alarming unprecedented choices being made right under our noses.

The people sounding the alarm go to work every day (or are looking for work) and are keeping up their homes, just like you are. In their spare time, they’re digging to find accurate news information so they can piece together the truth- a truth that's hard to face. They're writing letters, signing petitions, calling Congressmen and women, writing blogs, handing out fliers- even the quiet introverts (like me) who would far rather be doing something else entirely.

They're not trying for sainthood or trying to be better than anyone else. They're just trying to keep misguided and deadly forces right here on our own soil from ruining our country.

They’re not trying to ruin your day. Please give them a listen.

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Everyone please enjoy the blessings of our independence this Independence Day.



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