Today's column is painful to write… No, I'm not going to give, you, my readers some deep emotional revelation. I mean, simply, this column is painful to write. Let me explain.
About 11 days ago, we had a relatively small snow accumulation in Paeonian Springs. Not too bad, I thought. Then on top of the snow came the freezing rain. In quick succession came the single digit temperatures. The snow became an ice rink. Now enter Anastasia (Stacey), the long-haired Chihuahua.
With single digit temperatures, homeowners like me become concerned about things like the condition of water pipes. I cautiously walked on the frozen snow to check the condition of some exterior faucets. Slipping unseen out the door behind me, was my three and a half month old Chihuahua. Off she goes sliding like a surfer on four paws over the frozen ice and proceeds down the hill. I panic. There are huge hawks in our woods that could carry this young adventurer off. I take after her and then WHOOMPH! That's the sound of the breath expelling from my body as I hit the deck. Stunned, laying there, "Stacey" the Chihuahua returns and is sympathetically licking my nose. I attempt to get up, but down I go again. Stacey gets scared and heads for the front door. I realize I'm hurt and getting up a third time would not be wise. So, I pull my somewhat large body across the ice by grasping hedges planted along the side of the house. I finally make it back to the entrance of the house, let Stacey, and myself back in.
Without going into detail, I messed up some ribs. I'm healing, but it's a slow process. I have to sleep sitting up and I never seem to get comfortable in any position. I'm watching a lot of TV and catching up on my reading. I won't bore you with the safety message inherent in my experience. I'm sure most of you can figure that out for yourself. Partial Observers observe and through TV during this convalescent period, I have observed quite a bit.
· My pain is nothing compared to the pain that our injured soldiers and marines are experiencing on the front lines in Iraq and Afghanistan. Like many millions of Americans, I was aghast at the follow-up treatment these veterans are getting at our military and veteran's hospitals. Don't get me wrong. The front-end treatment in the field and in the treatment centers is excellent. The failure comes in the convalescent period. The scandal at Walter Reed Hospital is inexcusable. Someone needs to go to jail. When we fail to take care of our defenders, we will eventually write our own doom.
· Lawyers – Watching the Anna Nichole Smith saga play out has convinced me that our legal system desperately needs to be reformed. There are just too many attorneys. Most of them aren't very good. They're consumed with greed and unfortunately, the greediest ones go into politics. Rules for disbarment need to be expanded. Quit letting attorneys police themselves. Set up civilian non-attorney review boards in each jurisdiction.
· The Congress – The new Congress is no better than the old Congress. Our new Speaker of the House and Senate Majority Leader are jokes. Gridlock is going to be here for a long time. This bunch has already failed the American Public and they are barely out the starting gate.
· George and Dick – Their retirements cannot come too soon…
· China and Wall Street – China's stock market lost 9.3 % of its value in one day causing our stock market to dip 416 points. How closely is our financial future tied to Chinas? Go Global Economy, Go!
· Osvaldo Aldrete Davila is a drug smuggler. Two U.S. Border Patrol Agents were sent to prison for shooting this man in the buttocks because he tried to escape back into Mexico. The Justice Department under the leadership of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales is under immense pressure to bring a reversal to the court decision, which sentenced agents Ignacio Ramos and Jose Compean to 11 and 12 years in federal prison. A Congressman, U.S. Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, R-Calif., is bringing forth evidence that if true, may implicate U.S. Attorney Johnny Sutton for obstruction of justice in this unsavory matter.
. Al Gore - The former Vice President is making a large name for himself in his efforts carrying the message on global warming. His movie, "An Inconvenient Truth" has won an Oscar and there is strong possibility that my fellow Tennessean might receive a Nobel prize. Now, if Al could get his own 1500 dollar a month heating/air-conditioning bill a little lower, everything would be hunky dory. He might be able to afford another run for president.
That's it for this week. Time for another pain pill. I hope that my next column will be more focused… and pain free. Stay Safe!
: Defense Secretary Robert Gates fires Secretary of The Army for not properly addressing conditions at Walter Reed!