Wednesday, January 31, 2007

But they still SUCK compared to Dunkin' Donuts

I am only posting this one for the benefit of a friend of mine who refuses to realize that Krispy Kreme sucks when compared to Dunkin' Donuts.

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. -- Krispy Kreme Doughnuts Inc. still is in a "turnaround" but "making some progress" toward finding new sources of growth and resolving a string of accounting and managerial woes that have battered the doughnut maker, said Daryl G. Brewster, Krispy Kreme president and chief executive.

Speaking at the company's first annual meeting of shareholders since May 2004, Mr. Brewster spent more than 45 minutes outlining a series of moves underway are that aimed at eventually restoring Krispy Kreme to its past glory.

There are no Krispy Kreme's near here. There is one in Goldsboro and one in Raleigh. There is a Dunkin' Donuts in Clayton, where I stop to get coffee often on the way to work. The last time I had Krispy Kreme coffee, I about spit it out. I have never been impressed with their donuts, either. Sure, their fresh, hot, off the bakery glazed are OK, but they still don't measure up to Dunkin' Donuts.

In the WTF file...

Some weird news.

Claudia Mejia from says she will never be able to hold her newborn because an Orlando hospital performed a life-altering surgery and, she claims, the hospital refuses to explain why they left her as a multiple amputee. The woman says the hospital won’t tell her exactly what happened.

Claudia Mejia gave birth eight and a half months ago at Orlando Regional South Seminole. She was transported to Orlando Regional Medical Center in Orlando where her arms and legs were amputated. She was told she had streptococcus, a flesh eating bacteria, and toxic shock syndrome, but no further explanation was given. The hospital, in a letter, wrote that if she wanted to find out exactly what happened, she would have to sue them.

Follow the link in the story to the full article. Weird. I would certainly sue. How can finding out what happened to your own self violate the rights of other patients? That is just retarded and unethical.

Drop out rate up sharply in Johnston County

The high school drop out rate has risen some 24% here in Johnston County. I don't know if this is because of the ever increasing population of illegal aliens here (usually Hispanic) or what. I do know that schools are getting easier, not harder. There are many things not taught when I was in school, such as a greater emphasis on computer skills. However, the basics, formerly referred to as the "3 R's" are not taught as fervently as before.

According to the report I read on WMPM's news site, the largest percentage of drop outs by ethnicity is of American Indians, with Hispanic being next. The problem with that concept is that they are far fewer in number. Therefore, any small number of Indians dropping out would yield a high percentage for that ethnic group. If you only have five Indians in the school system and one drops out, the you have a 20% Indian drop out rate. By comparison, we have a high number of Hispanics and Blacks, who according to the statistics, are the next two groups in percentage portion. 100 dropping out of several thousand is a much smaller percentage, but a higher number total. The story does not release actual numbers. It would be interesting to see the reality of the figures.

Dropout Rate Climbs In Johnston County - After a three year decline in the dropout rate, Johnston County Schools saw more students quit school last year. The Annual Drop Out Report, released by the NC Department of Public Instruction on Wednesday, showed the upward trend was statewide. Across North Carolina , the drop out rate increased to 5.04 percent during the 2005-06 school year, an increase of 6.3%. In Johnston County , 404 students (5.01%) dropped out of high school last year, compared to 325 students (4.46%) the year before. That is equivalent to a 24.3 percent increase. The increase of male students dropping out was double that of females. American Indians had the highest number of drop outs based on ethnicity, followed by Hispanics and African Americans across the state, according to the report.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

It's about friggin' time!

Two bridges that cross over creeks on Highway 39 have been under demolition and reconstruction for months. In talking to a DOT engineer, I was told that it would take six months for construction. The problem is that the bridges are solid concrete, made in the 1920's. Instead of just jackhammering or blasting, the crews had to saw cut the bridges out. Why? Environmental concerns that debris may get into the creeks.

You can't tell me that the impact would be that great if they did. To break up the bridges then pull chunks of concrete out of the water should be quick and easy. Unfortunately, the jobs take a lot longer, thereby polluting the creeks as it is for longer periods of time. Stupid.

It finally looks as if the bridges are going to be finished soon. Now that I am conditioned to take the detour each trip out Highway 39, it will be interesting to see if I habitually drive that way next trip. Actually, only one bridge will be ready this week, so I am still screwed for the time being.

From The Smithfield Herald:

Bridges almost ready

Work on N.C. 39 nearing completion
By Suzette Rodriguez, Staff Reporter

A wider, safer bridge on N.C. 39 over Buffalo Creek north of Selma should be ready for motorists by the middle of next week.

On Monday, a contractor hauled in loads of dirt to build up the road shoulders on either side of the new structure. But he had to delay pouring asphalt because the air and ground temperatures were too cool.

Jimmy Marler, a bridge -maintenance engineer with the state Department of Transportation, said the new bridge is 36 feet wide — 15 feet wider than the old bridge built in 1925. In spite of its age, the old bridge was still sturdy, but too narrow to meet federal standards.

For years, residents had complained about the safety of the bridge as more traffic used N.C. 39. The bridge had also become the scene of several wrecks, some of them serious.

Back in 2003, the DOT put on its replacement list the Buffalo Creek bridge and another bridge farther north on N.C. 39 at Little River. The work was part of a DOT program to improve safety on rural highways.

"Those bridges have been our priority," Marler said.

Meanwhile, work on the second bridge is expected to wrap up by the first week in March. While construction started Sept. 5 on both bridges, the bridge at Little River has taken longer to build. On Monday, the crew finished setting the spans of the bridge, Marler said.

Because of the construction, motorists have had to follow detours of about seven miles. But once the Buffalo Creek bridge opens, the detour will shorten to about a mile and a half, Marler said.

Residents who live on N.C. 39 near the bridges have had a detour of about two miles, he added. "So it’s not been that bad," he said.

During the construction at Buffalo Creek, Clarence Bass, who lives in the house just north of the bridge, has been a regular at the job site. "It’s looking great," he said Monday as he watched workers seal joints on the bed of the bridge. "It’s going to be a real asset to the community and to traffic."

Bass said he had no idea the construction would be so time-consuming. "People have to be patient," he added.

Involuntary annexation

I am a big supporter of private property rights. That means I have a hard time with government taking property, over regulating property use, and over taxation of property (with property taxation at all, for that matter). One problem I see going on a lot is involuntary annexation of property by municipalities.

The City of Fayetteville had a big involuntary annexation fight a while back. An entire region was annexed against the will of the residents, who at the time, lived in the unincorporated area of the county. They received no city services or benefits of being incorporated. However, they ended up paying the price of taxation simply to be called Fayetteville residents.

The town on Selma is looking to annex a bunch of acreage into the city limits. I have absolutely no problem with annexation that is agreeable to the affected property owners. When it is done under protest, I have a big problem with it.

There is one instance in which I do support involuntary annexation, however. If the property or properties in question are surrounded by annexed property and the properties are deriving benefits from the town. By that I mean if they property owners benefit from improved water, sewer, garbage removal, utilities, property value, streets, etc. as a result of being contiguous to the town limits, then I find it appropriate to annex such a property into the town. Selma recently had such a case here in town on Ricks Road.

The entire idea behind annexation of additional properties into the corporate limits of a town is for growth and planning control, but more importantly, the property tax revenue. Building the tax base is a popular reason, probably the only real reason, for involuntary annexation. It is all about the money...period.

For this reason, a bill has been introduced in the North Carolina General Assembly to stop this action by municipalities. Here is the article from WMPM's web site.

Rep. Langdon Co-Sponsors Bill Banning Involuntary Annexations
- Representative J.H. Langdon of Johnston County has co-sponsored a bill introduced in the NC House on Tuesday calling for a ban on involuntary annexations by municipalities statewide. House Bill 32 would suspend all involuntary annexations until 2009, and create a 10-member Legislative Study Commission to study the issue. The Commission would report back to lawmakers during the 2009 session, making their recommendations. At issue is whether property owners rights are protected when they are involuntarily annexed by municipalities, and whether remedies are available to those property owners. "Annexation should be a voluntary solution to the wants of taxpayers. Annexation becomes a big problem when it becomes involuntary and goes against the people’s wishes that are being annexed," Rep. Langdon told WMPM. Rep. Larry Brown (District 73) introduced the legislation Tuesday. Brown is the mayor of Kernersville. Jackson Stancil, Legislative Aide to Representative Langdon, said many people have no desire to be annexed but often have no choice in the matter. Recently, when Fayetteville involuntarily annexed an unincorporated area into their city limits, some residents were forced to pay out as much as $3,000 annually in additional fees and taxes, even though they gained few, if any, services from the city. The legislation does not cover voluntary annexation.

Here is a web site opposing forced annexation in North Carolina.

Monday, January 29, 2007

And now for something completely different...

How is it that the mayor of a foreign capitol city gets it and we in this nation do not? Moscow, located in Russia, is in a vastly secular, atheist country. Russia was not always so, but since the Bolshevik revolution in 1917, they have been largely secularist.

We in this country have a rich heritage of spiritual and moral values. Yet, abominable "gay pride" parades have become acceptable. The mayor of Moscow has called their "gay pride" parade Satanic. And he is correct. It is amazing how far we have strayed in allowing hedonism to prevail over morality.

Here is the article link. Below are a few paragraphs. I never thought that I would support Russian over US policy, but here I am doing it.


Moscow Mayor Yury Luzhkov said Monday he would never allow a gay parade to take place in Moscow despite pressure from the West, Russia’s RIA-Novosti news agency reports.

"Last year, Moscow came under unprecedented pressure to sanction the gay parade, which can be described in no other way than as Satanic," Luzhkov said at the 15th Christmas educational readings in the Kremlin Palace.

"We did not let the parade take place then, and we are not going to allow it in the future," said Luzhkov who has been in office since 1992.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

One of my favorite t-shirts

I haven't worn this one in a little while, since it is getting old, has a stain, and has some small holes in it. It has also shrunk a bit and is not as long as it used to be. I still love it, though.

Video on the town where I grew up

Here is a video on Youtube about Franklin, NH. The loser who created the video does not allow embedding of his videos, so here is the link to see it. By the way, he isn't funny. I wouldn't mind the video so much if he was actually funny. Franklin isn't exactly the cultural center of the universe. If you were to give New Hampshire an enema, you might stick the hose in Franklin. BUT, this guy isn't exactly humorous.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Quick animation about your 2nd Amendment rights

I have collected some cool bumper sticker and sign images from the internet on the freedom to keep and bear arms. I put 20 of them together in an animation. Enjoy.

2nd Amendment Animation

Friday, January 26, 2007

And this is a bad thing HOW???

An actual headline from The Drudge Report: North Carolina illegals scared to return to work after raid.

OK, so illegal aliens who should not be working at a meat packing plant are scared to go to work. Someone please tell me how this is a bad thing. What part of illegal is hard to comprehend? There are plenty more places of employment for INS to raid. We only have 12 million more illegals to go.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

MLK, gun shows, Carter, and State of the Union

Since I have not written in the blog in a week, I will hit several topics. I have kept a running list of things I want to write about. I will start with my list in chronological order.

Last week, I heard Mayor Hester remark how he was disappointed that no town council members attended the Martin Luther King Jr. celebration on MLK Day at the Harrison Alumni Building. He further remarked that he was the only Caucasian at the "celebration". Well, there are good reasons for that. First, at least two of the four council members work for a living. Holidays, especially racial appeasement ones, do not apply to everyone. The self-employed and laborers who work at businesses that choose to not close their doors for such a lame holiday still work.

Second, perhaps Caucasians choose not to spend their time listening to people worship a dead man, regardless of his ethnicity. I personally detest how the legacy of Dr. King has been perverted, used for personal gain, and used as a tool to pry further into racism rather than away from it. I know that there are plenty of people who think likewise.

One thing that I have been finding lately is that gun shows are becoming increasingly expensive. I really enjoy walking down the aisles, looking at different guns and supplies. The recent Raleigh shows have been an improvement over those in years past. However, they prices sure are not better. I am real tired of not being able to find much in the way of good deals. I understand that the shows cost money to put on, to set up as a vendor, and to transport goods and people. But for cryin' out loud, don't gouge us shmoes who come to one of the few bastions of 2nd Amendment freedoms we enjoy. If it keeps up, gun dealers will put gun shows out of business.

I caught snippets of the Jimmy Carter special on C-SPAN last weekend, or whatever day it was. It was the 30th anniversary of his presidency and was live coverage from the University of Georgia. One speaker was applauding Carter's accomplishment in office of lowering the amount of foreign oil importation to 2 million barrels less than prior to his term of office. For those of you old enough to remember that period of time, perhaps you will also remember long lines at the gas pumps, high gas prices, and record inflation.

I did not watch the State of the Union speech Tuesday night. Instead, I watched the DVR'd episodes of American Idol. I would rather read the speech in its full text later. I am really tired of the grandstanding, hypocrisy, and the "show" of the State of the Union. That speech is now misnamed. It is no longer a true speech on the State of the Union. It is an occasion for political grandstanding.

Just ONCE, I would love to see a true State of the Union given. Article II Section 3 of the US Constitution says: "He shall from time to time give to the Congress information of the state of the union, and recommend to their consideration such measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient; he may, on extraordinary occasions, convene both Houses, or either of them"

Note that it does NOT say that the State of the Union speech is to be once per year, nor does it say that it has to even be a speech. Furthermore, the speeches rarely actually contain "information of the state of the union". Recommendations to Congress of "such measures he shall judge necessary and expedient" have been replaced with grand plans of expansion of the government and personal agenda items.

There were some contradictions in the State of the Union speech. The old addage of "Do as I say, not as I do" applies. Bush made the statement, "America's prosperity requires restraining the spending appetite of the federal government." HELLO? Under the GOP control of both houses of Congress and The White House, spending has, to quote William Redpath, "the Republicans have spent more, even discounting for terror and war related expenses, than even the Democrats had spent".

At the same time, Bush plans to extend the No Child Left Behind Act. Yet, he says, "My budget substantially reduces or eliminates more than 150 government programs that are not getting results, or duplicate current efforts, or do not fulfill essential priorities. The principle here is clear: A taxpayer dollar must be spent wisely, or not at all." The duplicity here is obvious. He wants to increase PEL grants, funding to schools, and increase government control on environmental matters. That is not decreasing programs, that is increasing them. He wants to spur prosperity yet wants to grant amnesty to 12 million illegal aliens in this nation, killing a lot of our economic opportunities for citizens here.

Bush wants to encourage private health coverage purchasing with tax credits. That is fine. To pay for that, though, he wants to tax my health benefits. He is trying to get us away from an employer provided health care system. I understand the concept that people will only purchase coverage they want instead of a blanket coverage for stuff they don't need if they have to buy their own coverage. However, what business is it of the federal government's to regulate what my employer and I mutually agree upon for my own health care coverage, since they do offer it? Just stay out of my business! It is just business and it is between me and my employer. Period.

If I want to buy my own coverage, I will. This has nothing to do with the government. Also, I am tired of paying for the health care of those too stupid or lazy to obtain their own. Not everyone without health insurance is in that position because of the inability to pay for the insurance premiums. That is their own risk. I went for years with no coverage at all, and paid all costs out of pocket. So what?

Health benefits are out there if people are smart enough to look for them. There are many viable alternatives. I have seen many plans, groups, charities (yes, I even saw a charity that has a cooperative plan), etc. that have alternative plans to traditional health insurance. I used to sell one such plan.

What is lacking? How about stuff like our annual revenue versus annual expenditures. How about annual debt figures? Sure, the speech has things such as "we are facing (insert problem here) in our (insert program name here)" generic things, but nothing concrete that actually states what our union status presently is.

Here is one blatant lie in the speech. "The United States has no right, no desire and no intention to impose our form of government on anyone else." Yeah, right. One word...Iraq. Then, he goes on to talk about "democracies" in the Middle East, Ukraine, Afghanistan, etc. First and foremost, STOP USING THE TERM DEMOCRACY!!!! WE are NOT a freakin' democracy. We never have been and hopefully never will be!!! I don't see the term republic used in the speech. Article IV, section 4 of the US Constitution: "The United States shall guarantee to every state in this union a republican form of government". I take that two ways. First, the guarantee that this will be our form of federal government and that the states will be guaranteed that they will have this in their own individual states.

What needs to happen is that each new Congressman, Senator, President, judge, and federal employee needs to have a civics lesson prior to taking office or employment. After all, the President's oath of office is, "I do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States." If only that were true and all unconstitutional legislation was eliminated or at least vetoed. I wish we had at least a president who would see things that way. It is easier to have one man than 535 to think clearly, one would think. Maybe I am wrong.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Already a week?

Sorry about not writing for a week. Time has just flown by. I have actually written a few notes throughout the week about things to blog about. I will try to sit down tomorrow night and write.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

A follow up to my music industry post

The music industry is now getting more and more slimy in their pursuit of music illegal downloaders. It is one thing to go after those actually performing the activity. Now they are trying to go after the internet service providers of those who use their services for illegal activity. This is just plain ridiculous. To me, that is like suing Ford of GM because drug dealers or drunks use their cars for illegal activities. The argument is that the ISP should shut down the accounts of file downloaders. I don't see that this is the responsibility of internet providers. They provide a service. How that service is used is not their fault and they should not be policing said use. AT&T is not required to monitor what is spoken over their phone lines. Why should an internet provider be held responsible for how their customers use the internet?

Here is part of the article I just read.

Music industry threatens ISPs over piracy
By Nic Fildes
Published: 18 January 2007

The music industry opened up a new front in the war on online music piracy yesterday, threatening to sue internet service providers that allow customers to illegally share copyrighted tracks over their networks.

The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, or IFPI, said it would take action against internet companies that carry vast amounts of illegally shared files over their networks. It stressed that it would prefer not to pursue such a strategy and is keen to work in partnership with internet providers.

John Kennedy, the chairman of the IFPI, said he had been frustrated by internet companies that have not acted against customers involved in illegal activity. He warned that litigation against ISPs would be instigated "in weeks rather than months". Barney Wragg, the head of EMI's digital music division, said the industry had been left "with no other option" but to pursue ISPs in the courts.

Local businesses...another one bites the dust

Today I packed up the laptop and went to Riverside Coffee in downtown Smithfield. There is not a coffee shop in Selma, much less one with internet access. So I went there, had some chicken salad, coffee, and pastry for lunch and wrote. I reworked the forum on, wrote another column for LaPlante's Rants that will be in The Selma News, checked email, and got on some message boards I frequent. While sitting in the coffee shop, which was doing a brisk business, a couple sat at the table next to mine along with a British businessman from Raleigh. They were lamenting the lack of dining establishments in Selma.

They said that Sweetwater's is now out of business. RJ and Karen shut down the restaurant this week and put a letter in the window saying that Karen is having health issues and they need to devote their time to working with her health. I am sorry to hear about Karen's health issues. Karen and RJ will be in our prayers. I am also sorry to see that the only good restaurant in Selma is not closed. We were semi-regulars there. Here is The Selma News' article on the subject.

I stopped by a small barber shop on South Raiford Street and got a haircut. Clevon is a young entrepreneur who opened Kuttin' Korners in the old post office building. I went there after seeing him get up and speak at the citizen's open forum at the last town council meeting. I figured that I needed to find a local barber instead of either cutting my own hair or driving to Clayton to see a close friend of ours who owns a shop. I can't always make it to Clayton just for a haircut. I love my friend dearly, but it is a bit much at times to squeeze in the time.

Besides all of that, I wanted to take the time to meet new people. Clevon is a seemingly bright young man who I wanted to give a chance. I walked into his shop and told him that if he can do a good job at cutting "white boy" hair, I would be glad to let him have at it. He caters primarily to the Black population here in town, being in a primarily Black area. I personally don't care about his skin color or that of his regular clients. All I care about is getting a good haircut at a good price. He offered both. His price was only $10. He did a great job, too. He was also enjoyable to converse with. It was well worth my time to visit and I think I have found a new tonsorial artist. Click here if you don't know what that means.

I really shouldn't say that is all I care about, since it is not completely true. He is a human being with feelings and the need to make a living just like anyone else. I do care about such things as that, too. As long as he is professional (or even more casual, for that matter) and not disagreeable, sloppy, or anything that I would find objectionable, I am all for supporting his business. I purposely decided to try his shop just because he is a young Black entrepreneur who offers a service for which I have a need. It had a lot to do with being friendly and developing relationships. I am open to that with most anyone. I recommend people try his shop. I am glad I did so today.

I don't understand the "good ol' boy" mentality that a lot of people have. There are plenty of people who will never visit Clevon's shop just because he is a Black man. I have not tried the barber across the street and railroad tracks yet, although that shop is White owned. I have absolutely nothing against them, don't know them, and hope that they do a great business. I have never heard anything bad about that shop, either. For that matter, I have not heard anything good. I asked some folks I know for recommendations for a good barber in the area and some go out of town. I figured that if I could meet Clevon, make a new friend, and foster good relations with a big old White boy like me, than all the better for us.

On the flip side, perhaps a lot of Black folks won't use the other barber shop because it is White owned. To be honest, many older White guys don't do well at cutting nappy hair. That is why I said to Clevon that if he could cut by sheep wool like "White boy" hair and do a good job, then I will be back. I wanted to give him a chance, and he did not disappoint.

Racism is not a matter of is a matter of sin. I for one don't mind crossing many such barriers. I try to be fair with all, judge people by the content of their character, and give chances to others. I don't just preach that attitude, I am determined to put it in regular practice and do so.

On the other hand, I don't tread lightly on subjects that are racist in nature, regardless of from whom the originate. For evidence of this, just read more in this blog.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Now I am torn as to who to vote for

I just read today about two different men that tend to be head and shoulders above most Republicans that are going to run for President of the United States. I have wondered who will rise to the occasion and be the outstanding candidate with some sort of conservative or libertarian type leanings and has a spine. I have read about two so far. These two men have been much better than most Republicans ever thought of being on so many issues. Tom Tancredo and Ron Paul may both be running for President. FINALLY, someone I can vote for instead of holding my nose and voting for either the lesser of two evils or the evil of two lessers.

I lean a little more towards Ron Paul, but I also respect Tancredo far more than the rest of the GOP. Click on the names in the previous paragraph for articles on both from

Getting ripped off

I decided to make this part a separate post, since the last one got long and was about the trip this weekend.

Last night, I took Teresa out to dinner at Buffalo Wild Wings. I love that place. Afterwards, we went over to Best Buy, which is in the same shopping center. After eating wings, we often stop by Best Buy to see what deals we may find, look at televisions, software, computers, etc. Occasionally I find some CDs at a good price. This time, we found a 3 CD collection of 80's pop music.

I grew up in the 80's. I worked at an Adult Contemporary radio station while in high school and college. We played most of the same music that were in the collection. I saw the videos on MTV back when MTV actually played music and was cool. Once in a while, I like pulling out some old pop music from that time period. That era had a more fun attitude than the dreary 70's and the rebellious, grungy 90's.

I sure felt ripped off, though, when we put one of the CDs in the car CD player on the way home. It turned out that all the songs were performed by a studio band, performing the hits of the 80's. It is just not the same listening to INXS, Phil Collins, The Police, or REM being performed by some studio band that nobody ever heard of. Don't get me wrong, the band was not bad. They would be great at weddings and dance parties. The do a decent cover of these songs. HOWEVER, it is deceitful.

The packaging has in tiny little print "as performed by..." This is the second time I got burned by the recording industry in this manner. Months ago, I bought a Journey CD at Wal-Mart. It turned out to be the same deal. Rather than a best of compilation, it was the best songs of Journey as performed by whatever studio band. Twice burned.

The record industry should not wonder why people get pissed off at them and download songs and file share illegally. Stuff like this is why. The recording industry has not advanced with the times and technology. They overcharge for CDs. Then they deceitfully sell fake recordings that make people feel ripped off. When I fork out money for music that I have known most of my life, I want the original stuff, not a cheap substitute.

Granted, the cost of the CDs was less than half of what I spent on dinner. However, I don't feel ripped off about food that will be passed through the digestive system by tomorrow. I was not deceived in what I bought for a meal. I knew what I was paying for and got exactly what I ordered.

When people download music illegally, at least they get the original music. Those people like myself who pay for music get crap like this. No wonder the recording industry is despised by consumers.

Weekend trip, fun time, and disappointment

I am debating whether or not to make separate posts instead of this one long one. There are several topics on my mind, but maybe I will just keep going.

Teresa and I finally got away for a weekend together. I did not have a day off for about two months. When I finally got the opportunity, I promised Teresa a weekend away. She picked Beaufort and Atlantic Beach. She wanted to see the Maritime Museum in Beaufort and I was agreeable to that. I wanted to see Fort Macon while there, as well. We took our time at the museum, Teresa got to take a lot of pictures, and we got to walk along the waterfront.

There was a fuel spill at the docks in Beaufort. The fire department blocked much of the main street for hours. It was unnecessary to do so. I was greatly disappointed in how they seemed to be handling that incident. I would not have tolerated that should I have been the commander on scene. For actual emergencies, that is one thing. For something like this, it was another.

We did not get to take a boat tour this time, as we had hoped. It was off season, so no tours were running, apparently. We did get to pick up a backpack and a hat as souvenirs of our trip. We also found a few books in Beaufort and at Fort Macon that we wanted.

We had a decent dinner at The Channel Marker restaurant in Atlantic Beach. I am still baffled how a nice restaurant right on the sound like that pretty much offers just flounder for a main fish entree. Flounder? Even the Shriners serve flounder. Gimme a break! They did have tuna and mahi as the catch of the day, but only grilled or blackened. I prefer mahi fried, but they didn't offer it that way. None the less, we did still have some good food. Great oysters.

We found a hotel online. The Sea Hawk Motel seemed nice enough on the internet. It was only $45 a night and had ocean front views for every room. We got there, verified the room rate, and was offered a room with two double beds. That is fine, since we don't mind separate beds when we are in hotels. The problem was that when requesting a non-smoking room, we were informed that they do not have any. All rooms allow smoking. I inquired as to the reason for that, and I was simply told that they have been there for 43 years. They did not have any rooms set aside as non-smoking and were not required to do so. I paused, looked at my watch, and said, "Gee, I though this was the 21st Century. OK, thanks. I will go find somewhere else to stay" and left.

We ended up at the AmeriSuites hotel just up the road. AmeriSuites had rates online that were $65 to $95 online. We got a room for $75. They serve a decent breakfast, so I figure that we can consider that a savings. On the trip down there, we paid $13 for breakfast. At the Sea Hawk, we would have needed to buy breakfast. That brought the price differential down some. Also, we got a nice room with a living room area, kitchenette, and two beds. We also got full cable TV, so I got to see some of the ads that we run on Time Warner Cable.

Fort Macon was great, as well. Some renovations were completed recently that added more restored areas, recreated items, uniforms, artifacts, maps, etc. We walked all over the fort, took a lot of pictures, and enjoyed the history behind the park. I decided to join Friends of Fort Macon and support the organization's efforts to renovate and keep the fort operational.

On the way home, I decided to stop by a small gun show in Kinston. I saw the show advertised on banners along the highway on the trip down to the beach. We came back on Sunday in time to be able to go by the show. The wife wanted to stay in the car and take a nap. She was wiped out after a busy weekend. I am glad she did so that I didn't have to waste my money on admission for her, too. It is bad enough I wasted my $5.

There was ONE gun dealer there. ONE. There was an accessory dealer who had a few rifles, including two nice Mosins. I thought about the M38, which was beautiful. The problem is that they were way overpriced. I don't have an M38 yet and really liked what I saw. Other than that, everything else there consisted of airsoft, knife dealers, leather wallets, gun carry cases, a few boxes of ammo, some mil surp backpacks and helmets, glass cleaners, and accessories.

I have been to several shows by this same promoter in the past. I have seen only one good show by these guys (S & D Gun Shows) in the past few years. I really enjoyed the good one, but every other one has totally blown chunks. The large shows have been lame, but lately have been getting better. The small shows that were good are getting horrible. What is that all about?????

Friday, January 12, 2007

A friend of mine sent me this joke. Funny but with a message.

Four women were driving across the country. Each one was from a
different place: Idaho, Nebraska, North Carolina, and Mexico.

Shortly after the trip began, the woman from Idaho started
pulling potatoes from her bag and throwing them out of the

"What the heck are you doing?" demanded the Nebraskan.

"We have so many of these darn things in Idaho, I am just sick
of looking at them!"

A moment later, the gal from Nebraska began pulling ears of corn
from her bag and tossing them from the window.

"What are you doing that for?" asked the gal from Idaho .

"We have so many of these things in Nebraska, I am just sick of
looking at them!"

Inspired, the gal from North Carolina opened the car door and
pushed the Mexican out!

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Another man named Etheridge making dumb decisions and the minimum wage

Raising the minimum wage is not a prudent economic move. The amount of people who work for minimum wage is very small compared to the rest of the working public. People who have any self motivation don't work for minimum wage. I have taken several minimum wage jobs in my lifetime. I never stayed there long. Usually, the only ones who work that cheap are teenagers or sloths. I never bought the idea that people are actually trying to support a family on minimum wage. If they are, then they get what they deserve. Get a new job, get an education, or work harder for more money.

Labor unions love the idea of a raised minimum wage. Many labor union contracts have wage levels indexed to the minimum wage. That is where a lot of the pressure is coming from to actually raise the minimum wage. Politicians talk about having a "living wage". The majority of people on minimum wage are not working for a living. Most are part time or menial jobs, not full time employment that would be considered worthy of one making a career.

Since when is it the government's job to tell people what they may or may not pay someone? If I agree to work for $x, then that is between me and my employer. That is nobody's business except mine and my employer's. I personally can not live on minimum wage and would not stay on that level of pay for long. If I were to take and stay on a minimum wage job for any duration of time, then I would be an idiot.

Of course the liberal Bob Etheridge, the 2nd District Congressman who represents my town voted to raise the minimum wage. Anyone in Congress who voted to raise the minumum wage is, as the British would say, "pig ignorant" of economics.

If a small business can afford to pay three workers on minimum wage, the wage gets increased so that the employer can no longer afford the third worker, then someone gets put out of work. That is reality. Who pays for the wage hike? We do, as consumers. The price for the goods and services we consume will be raised to compensate.

All the discussion about banning the employing of illegal immigrant laborers goes out the window with a higher minimum wage. Republicans were willing to do little to stem the tide of illegal immigrants. Democrats actually tried to pick up the mantle of wanting to do something about it, but that didn't last long. If an employer is willing to hire an illegal immigrant at less than $5.15 per hour, why would anyone think that they would be less willing to hire an illegal immigrant if the labor cost for legal labor sources just went up? Of course the employment of illegal aliens at below market prices will increase as a result. It is simply a numbers thing.

We will have more unemployed people, some businesses faltering, increased illegal immigrants in the underground economy, and higher prices on the things and services we buy and use. But it is a "feel good" political move. It makes people feel better about having Democrats in power. What tripe.

Also from the WMPM website:

Etheridge Votes To Raise Federal Minimum Wage To $7.25 Hour - US Representative Bob Etheridge (D-Lillington) voted for bipartisan legislation on Wednesday to raise the federal minimum wage for the first time in a decade, from $5.15 an hour to $7.25 an hour. The legislation would affect at least 211,000 North Carolinians . "A pay raise for North Carolina 's working families is long overdue," said Etheridge. "The minimum wage has remained stagnant for a decade, while the cost of gasoline, groceries, health care and higher education rises steadily. This common-sense legislation will make a real difference in the lives of North Carolina families." The bill would raise the minimum wage by $2.10 over a two-year period. The bill raises the minimum wage to $5.85 60 days after enactment; to $6.55 one year later and to $7.25 one year after that. North Carolina 's minimum wage is currently $6.15. The federal minimum wage had not been raised since 1997, and when adjusted for inflation, it is at its lowest level in 51 years. The legislation now moves to the Senate for consideration.

Don't need to impeach James Ethridge now

It took bad publicity and public pressure for Republican leadership to lean on James Ethridge. He finally did the right thing and resigned.

From the WMPM website:

Judge Resigns But SBI Investigation Continues
- One day after the Johnston County Republican Party urged District Court Judge James Ethridge “to take prudent action in the best interests of his family, his supporters and the taxpaying public,” he resigned. Through his attorney Alan Schneider, Etheridge said his resignation would be delivered to the governor this week and that it would be effective next Tuesday. Etheridge was no longer able to hold court sessions after the NC State Bar revoked his license in October after determining he was dishonest and deceitful when he took the home and $14,000 in life savings of an elderly woman while he was a lawyer in 2001. He was elected as a judge in 2004, after practicing law for 28 years. Judge Ethridge did not resign after the State Bar revoked his law license and was continuing to receive his annual salary of $101,376. He would have continued to have been paid $1,949 weekly until the end of his term in December 2008 unless he resigned or was impeached. Meanwhile, the State Bureau of Investigation is continuing its investigation of Judge Ethridge. “We received a request to investigate from former District Attorney Tom Lock,” SBI spokesperson Noelle Talley said. “We are continuing that investigation under District Attorney Susan Doyle. When it is complete, we will submit a report to her office.” Ms. Talley said she could not say when the investigation might be completed but confirmed the SBI is investigating allegations of criminal activity by Mr. Ethridge before he became a judge.

I know that this seems harsh, but truth is truth

I have already written a column on this issue for my LaPlante's Rants weekly newspaper column. Which week it will appear in the local paper is not known, since this week's column was not published and next week's appeared in its place.

I was at this month's town council meeting Tuesday night. I thought about writing this yesterday, but decided to spend time with the wife instead. In today's Selma News, there is a story about the meeting and the public forum that happens each month. This month, there was a hot topic and a lot of speakers. Two convenience stores in Selma, The Brotherhood Market and The Lighthouse are being taken to court by the town over the public nuisance ordinance violations. There are a lot of police visits to each store to deal with unruly people, loiterers, and drug users and dealers.

I normally encourage people to attend town council meetings. Quite honestly, there are people that I wish would not go to some meetings. That was the case Tuesday night. Why? Because they are minorities or had an opinion? Heck, no. Because they were rude and obnoxious. Some people came forward and gave passionate speeches claiming that it is a disservice to the community to shut down the stores, that they need a store withing easy walking distance, and that we as a community are all responsible for what happens at the store properties.

Some speakers even tossed out some ideas I consider just plain stupidity. First, it is not my fault that there are drug users, dealers, or rowdy patrons at the stores. Yes, the stores are in a predominantly Black area of town. Ergo, most of their customers are Black. I don't care what color skin they have. I do care about their behavior. It is not my or anyone else's fault that these people exhibit no self control or discipline. If anything, liberalism has allowed parents to abrogate their personal responsibilities and parenthood that leads to no control over youth.

Another issue I want to blast is the idea that this whole action is racially motivated. Again, it has nothing to do with the fact that the offenders that are found at these stores are Black. Note that I don't refer to them as "African-American" or any other hyphenated term. I refuse to do so. One woman, Sylvia Cox, tried to turn this into an issue of race.

Ms. Cox is a racist woman who is outspoken about her beliefs. She is blatantly racist, being a Black woman who takes every opportunity to cry racism, although it is actually her own racism in action. She went off about how she is worked up about the upcoming Martin Luther King Jr. "holiday", the "years of oppression of her people", and now the town is trying to shut down Black owned and patronized businesses.

Let me make this abundantly clear. Ms. Cox, this has nothing to do with racism. I personally do not like the idea of government shutting down any legal business, especially something as simple and legal as a convenience store. However, it is "your people" that are exhibiting BAD BEHAVIOR and creating a nuisance. I don't care what their color, ethnicity, creed, or heritage happens to be. Bad behavior is bad behavior. If the behavior is predominantly exhibited by people of your race and chosen culture, then that is a problem with your people, not with the town government, community, or white folks. Your emotional and irrational thought process is in itself racism. I have had enough of people like yourself claiming to be a victim of racism every time something happens either that you don't like or to someone else who happens to be Negro.

People like Sylvia Cox decry how her people are treated yet do nothing to change the behavior of her own people. It is not being part of the solution, it is being a part of the problem. Black people don't behave badly because of their race, no more than Caucasians behave badly because they are white. It is because they have evil in their hearts and their own families have enabled that behavior.

Another problem is that such people generally tend to vote for liberal candidates for government representatives. These blind people can not see that liberalism is contributing to their own plight. Instead of accepting responsibility for their own success and behavior, they rely upon big government to give them entitlements and a measure of self worth. Instead of grabbing on to the American dream and pursuing success, they accept victimhood status by their own choosing. It is ironic that the liberalism that has assisted in creating the very hoodlums that created this nuisance situation with The Brotherhood Market is hurting the owners of the store. These store owners, Mr. and Mrs. Alwahishi, have worked hard to bring themselves out of the normal paradigm of being Black victims and instead are trying to make something of themselves. They work long, hard hours, yet the victim, poverty minded, and morally bankrupt members of their own culture are killing their business.

It is sad that the Black community can not realize that liberalism and Democrats are the very ones keeping them in bondage. High tax rates, government hand outs, and the endorsement of abrogation of self reliance have all been devastating to the Black community. Now the town is being blamed for attempting to clean up the bad behavior of those same people.

It is people like Sylvia Cox who worship MLK, think that the world owes her people a living, and should take care of them that are the problem. It is further ironic that such people think that the government should do more to help their people, then turn around and cry racism when a government has to take action to clean up the mess created by her people because her people won't take care of the problems themselves and responsibility for their own behavior.

Another hugely ironic thing at the council meeting was that one young Black woman who lectured the audience and council on how she confronts bad behavior wherever she finds it in public; that she thinks everyone should take the responsibility to correct and confront people who act badly, was an unruly and disrespectful person herself. She was seated in the same row I was. During the course of the meeting, there were a lot of people having private conversations, being disruptive and loud, playing with cell phones, and even shouting outbursts during the meeting. She was one of the worst offenders, along with her companions. How can someone be so hypocritical by pointing her finger at everyone there and admonish them to confront bad behavior yet exhibit the very behavior she decries? What a great amount of disrespect.

For the record, I am a big supporter of equal rights, regardless of race or sex. I believe in equality of the races, but NOT in equality of cultures. Evil is as evil does. Stupid is as stupid does. Even Forrest Gump got that right. As much as I disagree with many things spoken by Martin Luther King, Jr., the one statement that rings true is "I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character." Read the whole "I Have A Dream Speech" for more. I don't agree with everything he said and find some contradictions in his paradigm, but I do agree with his dream of being judged by one's character, regardless of skin color.

People who cry racism over every situation in which someone's character, or lack thereof, has created trouble basically spits on Martin Luther King's memory and what he actually tried to stand for. His agenda and name have been hijacked. Oddly enough, the worst offenders are the ones who evoke his name, his memory, and worship him while at the same time tarnish the legacy. Sylvia Cox did this Tuesday night. Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton do this regularly. What a shame.

One other wild theory voiced at the meeting was that the move to close the stores was nothing more than a plot to take the properties and give them to developers under the guise of declaring them as public nuisances. That is certainly a creative conspiracy theory.

What was lacking from most speakers at the forum were the key issues of 1. Are the businesses indeed a nuisance to the general public? 2. Is it the role and responsibility of government to interfere with private, legal businesses? Those are the emotion free, logical topics that need to be addressed. Once those are addressed, then we can answer 3. Should the business owners be responsible for nuisance abatement? 4. If the business owners do not eliminate the continuing nuisance status, should they be shut down in order to eliminate said nuisances?

I believe that the business owners should be held to the expectation that they will take responsibility for what happens on their property. One can not abrogate the responsibility of ensuring that such activities do not occur, especially on a regular, continued basis on their property. However, I am also of the opinion that personal property and freedom to operate a business should not be flippantly abridged.

One town has it right

At this month's Selma Town Council meeting, there were some public comments made that the community was responsible for the crime that goes on at two different convenience stores in town. The two stores have been served with a court action by the town to enforce public nuisance laws. The stores have a lot of criminal activity committed by customers while on their premises. The police are called to one of these two stores quite a bit to handle these problems.

Here are the first paragraphs of an article I found. It is not a bad idea.


Residents of a crime-ridden rural village have threatened to carry out punishment beatings on teenage troublemakers amid claims the police are ignoring their plight.
A group has delivered an anonymous letter to police, warning they are going to take the law into their own hands.

The vigilantes are threatening to patrol the streets in a van and carry out attacks on youths they blame for a spate of vandalism and petty crime in Menstrie, Clackmannanshire.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

In the DVD player right now

There is no way this should be the case

I was not surprised when allegations came out about James Ethridge, the judge who has been disbarred for unethical activities while practicing law. I was not surprised that he was disbarred. I guess that I should not be surprised that a lawyer found a loophole with which to screw people out of money. The man still has not resigned and is technically still in the job position as judge. He can not act as judge, but he still holds the job. Therefore, the taxpayers still have to pay his salary plus those of substitute judges. We are getting double charged because Ethridge will not resign.

This is just plain wrong. We are getting hosed as taxpayers. He will leave the job and a replacement found only if he is impeached and convicted, the Judicial Standards Commission removes him, or he quits. While still in the position, he keeps drawing a salary for doing absolutely nothing. Leave it to a lawyer to figure this out.

IMPEACH JAMES ETHRIDGE NOW! He is no longer qualified to hold his job and he is suckling off the taxpayers for doing nothing.

Here is a News & Observer article on the topic.


1. An armed man is a citizen. An unarmed man is a subject.

2. A gun in the hand is better than a cop on the phone.

3. Colt: The original point and click interface.

4. Gun control is not about guns; it's about control.

5. If guns are outlawed, can we use swords?

6. If guns cause crime, then pencils cause misspelled words.

7. "Free" men do not ask permission to bear arms.

8. If you don't know your rights you don't have any.

9. Those who trade liberty for security have neither.

10. The United States Constitution (c) 1791. All Rights reserved.

11. What part of "shall not be infringed" do you not understand?

12. The Second Amendment is in place in case the politicians ignore the others.

13. 64,999,987 firearms owners killed no one yesterday.

14. Guns only have two enemies: rust and politicians.

15. Know guns, know peace, know safety. No guns, no peace, no safety.

16. You don't shoot to kill; you shoot to stay alive.

17. 911 - government sponsored Dial-a-Prayer.

18. Assault is a behavior, not a device.

19. Criminals love gun control -- it makes their jobs safer.

20. If guns cause crime, then matches cause arson.

21. Only a government that is afraid of its citizens tries to control them.

22. You only have the rights you are willing to fight for.

23. Enforce the "gun control laws" we ALREADY have, don't make more.

24. When you remove the people's right to bear arms, you create slaves.

25. The American Revolution would never have happened with gun control.

Attention cat lovers!

You may have seen the uncensored video of the hanging of Saddam Hussein. I even posted it here on the blog earlier. Did you know that Saddam was a cat lover and wanted his cat present at his hanging? I saw the footage on the internet. The cat footage was not as widely published, but someone did capture video of the reaction to the hanging by Saddam's cat. I am posting it below.

Saddam's Cat

A post I made one year ago about MLK Day

Once again, we will "celebrate" Martin Luther King Day next week. I am reposting something I wrote last year at this time. Just last night, I heard one racist Black woman whining about "the years of oppression of her people" and how excited she is about the upcoming MLK Day celebration. There is going to be an MLK celebration on Monday at the Harrison Alumni Association building here in Selma.

I am so tired of the absolute worship of this man. He was a man. He was not perfect, just as with any other who walks the face of the earth. He preached a social gospel, but not the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He was a "reverend" but did not make speeches proclaiming the religion to which he was ordained. I have actually read some of his speeches, including the famous "I have a dream" speech. Though I agree with racial equality, I do not agree with equality of culture or behavior. All social perspectives are not equally valid. King's speeches are full of contradictions. Read them for yourself.

Anyway, here is a reprint of last year's post.


My employer and many governmental agencies will celebrate "Martin Luther King Jr. Day" on Monday. Personally, I do believe that this is an "appeasement" holiday and should not be celebrated on my tax dollars.

This holiday is akin to Kwanzaa to me. It is a fabricated day or celebration forced upon the majority by a minority. If the majority were to use common sense to oppose the "holiday", then they are labeled with the tag of "racist".

I don't personally believe that King was worthy of a holiday. He has been almost deified by the Black race in America. I have sat in church and literally heard a Sunday School teacher in a Black church proclaim King to have been the most balanced and spiritual man in history. Statues have been erected and streets have been renamed in his honor. Doctor King proclaimed that he wanted to see all men judged by the content of their character, not by the color of their skin. Unfortunately, many have departed from that battle cry. Oddly enough, those who vehemently fight to lift King as a shining example of Black America support affirmative action, segregated groups, their own "cultural centers", repairation payments for slavery, and other special considerations. That is entirely contrary to King's message of being judged by character rather than skin color.

G.Gordon Liddy claims that he has personal knowledge of FBI files of MLK that say he was an adulterer and had shady dealings. He said that J. Edgar Hoover's staff has numerous recordings of King in hotels with strange women. Many saw King as a troublemaker. Some even go so far as to call Martin Luther King Day by a different name; James Earl Ray Day.

Part of what bothers me about the recognition of MLK Day is that Veterans' Day has all but disappeared so that MLK Day could be a holiday instead. We no longer honor our vets as we used to. Furthermore, we do not declare a holiday for other great men in our history. We have not declared a Thomas Paine Day, a Samuel Adams Day, or even a Benjamin Franklin Day. We have had many great men who have preceeded King and all of us. The honest truth is that none of them were a prominent minority who was murdered. King fit the bill for a hero and a banner under which to march.

Those who were civil rights leaders in the 60's, but more so today, the leaders tended to have the title "Reverend", yet I have never heard any of the "reverends" preach Jesus. Usually, it is a politically charged, perverted monologue of liberalism. People like Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton are far from the roots of Martin Luther King, Jr.

I remember having a King disciple (also carrying the title "reverend")yell at me for two solid days, telling me (and a whole group of others) how horrible I am for being Caucasian. By nature of the fact that I am "white", I must be racist. Yup, that is judging someone by character rather than the color of skin. I am the type who would probably have been very active in the civil rights movement in the 60's, had I been alive then. I was born in 1968, so it was sort of hard to be part of that. The civil rights movement was right in their goals. I do believe that they have been successful in their actions, and this nation is a whole lot better in this decade than forty years prior.

MLK did a lot of good, from what I can tell from reading. He brought attention to a legitimate problem of inequality in this nation. Unfortunately, he has attained martyr status and has been nearly given godhood status and his message has been hijacked and perverted. Many churches and minorities have added the worship of King to the worship of Christ.

Friday, January 05, 2007

For those searching

For those who have been searching the net for the Patetown Church of God Food Bank, here is a new web site where you can find information. I have found a few people searching for that ministry lately, so I wanted to pass this along.

I have also seen people find this blog by searching for other things, too. Just for fun, let me see how many hits I get for the following words being found on my blog:

Saddam Hussein hanging video
Britney Spears
Paris Hilton
Free porn
Free sex videos
Gay sex

Of course, all you dopes will find is this blog entry. Baaaahhaaaaahaaaaaaa!!!!

Should be a fun experiment.

A sign of the times

The fact that Nancy Pelosi is Speaker of the House is proof that Frodo failed. Nancy was quoted yesterday as muttering, "Myyy preciousssssssss!"


From the WMPM web site:

Etheridge Sworn In To 6th Term In US House
- Second District Congressman Bob Etheridge was sworn into office Thursday in the U.S. Capitol. Representative Etheridge (D-Lillington) was elected in November to his sixth term in Congress, defeating Dan Mansell of Selma . Etheridge said his priorities in the 110th Congress include writing a new Farm Bill for North Carolina farmers, raising the minimum wage, protecting communities by implementing the 9-11 Commission’s recommendations, passing ethics legislation to clean up Congress, and to cut interest rates in half on student loans.


Etheridge is a PAC money taking liberal who has done a few things right, but I disagree with him the majority of the time. I wish it was Mansell who was being sworn in, but Etheridge is a local boy who is hard to beat.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

A prudent decision.

As I wrote last year, I was a big supporter of the Town of Selma going to the 911 dispatch center service offered by Johnston County rather than running our own dispatch. Now Selma residents can dial 911 and get police dispatch. It was a wise monetary move, prudent in regards to the use of resources, and responsible to the taxpayers of Selma. Here is the short news item on WMPM's website:

Selma Police Switch Dispatching To 911 Center - With the flip of a switch, the Johnston County 911 Center began dispatching for the Selma Police Department at 10am Tuesday. Last June, the Selma Town Council voted to switch emergency communications to the county. Johnston County 911 Director Jason Barbour said four new employees, one person per shift, were added along with a new telecommunications console. The switchover took place without any problems. Barbour said, “ Selma citizens would now receive the same quality of service all citizens of Johnston County are now getting.” Instead of dialing a seven digit number, 965-8189 for Selma Police, residents now only have to remember to dial 911. Selma Police Chief Charles Bowen felt the changeover would be a benefit to Selma residents. “They have technology far beyond what we could ever offer,” Bowen added. The Selma police dispatching will cost taxpayers about $140,000 annually. Two of the four dispatcher’s positions will be paid for by the Town of Selma . The 911 Center already handles Selma fire and EMS calls.

Compare the deaths of two leaders

I took note at the difference between the deaths of two world leaders and the reaction to their respective deaths. Gerald Ford died recently. He was a rather non-descript President who only lasted two and a half years in office. He lived to the age of 93. His beloved wife was beside him all the remaining days of his life. Though not considered a particularly effective President and his term of office ended thirty years ago, his life was still greatly honored.

Compare that to the death of Saddam Hussein. He was hanged by his own countrymen. He was insolent to the very end. He was a despot and hated. He was overthrown rather than voted out of office. People rejoiced at his death and he is only honored by his deluded followers.

Shakespeare wrote in his play "Julius Caesar", "The evil men do lives after them. The good is oft interred in their bones." Perhaps Gerald Ford will not be remembered for a great deal of good. However, he is still honored. Hussein, however, will be remembered for his evil.

I choose the path of the good going unremembered by most but honored by God.