Monday, December 23, 2013

Home for Christmas

One of the best part of the Christmas Holidays is having our adult children come home. Since they both live in the Eastern time zone we don't get to see them that often during the year. Last night we arrived back in Medford at the Rogue Valley International Airport with our son after visiting Lexington, Kentucky to see him receive his PhD in History from the University of Kentucky.  We  will go back to the airport  tonight to pick up our daughter who is coming in from Washington D.C.. (She drove to Lexington for John's graduation but then back to D.C. as her flight had already been booked) I love this time of year and the trips to the airport !

My Friend Jerry Norton RIP

Jerry Norton who died in Maryland, a week ago on Sunday, of brain cancer  was my friend,  political mentor and hero.  From afar Bill Buckley was my mentor however I only met him once. On a personal level it was Jerry Norton.
Jerry was in the class of 1964 at Marshfield High in Coos Bay, Oregon. I was in the class of 1965 at North Bend High a few miles away. We met in the heady days of the draft Goldwater campaign in 1963. Jerry formed the first chapter of Young Americans for Freedom (YAF) in the Coos Bay area. I followed him as President when he left for collage at the University of Oregon. At Oregon he formed another chapter of YAF and I followed him there and again  succeeded him as president.   After graduation from the U of O he entered the Army and I followed him a year later after my graduation. In the years that followed when he worked overseas as a journalist  I treasured the phone calls, letters and brief visits we had. Jerry was my mentor and I will miss him and his quiet wisdom. Being a conservative on a collage campus was very lonely during the turbulent 60's but having Jerry on our side made all the difference. The fight goes on for individual liberty.
Here is the obituary from the YAF website:
Early Sunday morning on December 15, Jerry Norton lost his battle with brain cancer. He fought for 14 long months but was unable to overcome the pneumonia that developed during these past few weeks.
Jerry most recently served as the executive director of Young America's Foundation's National Journalism Center from 2012 to 2013 before he became ill. We will miss his sharp mind, great sense of humor, half crooked smile and mild-mannered presence.
Jerry served on the board of Young Americans for Freedom in college after working on the YAF staff as college chapter and publications director, and also served as editor of YAF's New Guard magazine from 1971 to 1973.  
He had been a Reuters bureau chief in Indonesia and Singapore, Reuters news editor in Japan, and one of its editors in Hong Kong, Singapore and Washington. He traveled on assignments for Reuters to China, East Timor, Malaysia, Australia, the Philippines and other countries.
As Asian deputy editor in charge for political and general news from 2007 through 2010, with a brief for South Asia coverage, he oversaw coverage in India and the rest of the Subcontinent, reinforcing in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and several times in Pakistan.
Prior to his career of more than 25 years with Reuters, Norton was the business editor of Hong Kong's leading English-language newspaper; worked in Asia, Europe and the U.S. for another news agency; was vice president and managing editor of Phillips Publishing in the Washington area.
An Oregon native, Norton graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Oregon Honors College.  After service in the U.S. Army in Vietnam, where he won a Purple Heart and other decorations, he attended Columbia University, earning a master's degree from its Graduate School of Journalism.
He was a long-time member of the Philadelphia Society and was twice elected president of the Singapore Foreign Correspondents Association.

Jerry is survived by his wife, Kim Thoa, and son, Michael Norton.

Jerry will be buried as he requested at Arlington Cemetery.


Sunday, November 24, 2013


"No time to wallow in the mire" Forget the bad new at home and abroad. Forget the results of last weeks games, forget the record books, forget Thanksgiving ,Forget "Black Friday" sales  !!!

Here in Oregon this is Civil War Week. The week of the game between the University of Oregon Ducks and the Oregon State University Beavers. The game will be on FoxSports1 on "Black Friday" in Eugene at Oregon's Autzen Stadium. The game will be on Fox Sports 1 at 4:PM PST.
Someone said the "Civil War" game "is for the right to live in the State of Oregon" or at least the right to live in the State of Oregon with your head held high. This is one of college footballs oldest rivalries. The oldest west of the Mississippi. Here in Oregon, Ducks and Beavers can be found in most offices, families and neighborhoods. It's brother vs brother, neighbor vs neighbor and coworker vs coworker so it truly is a Civil War. These two teams and their fans do not like each other.

One of my favorite Civil War stories is from World War II. One of the Band of Brothers featured in the HBO mini series, Don Malarkey, is a University of Oregon alum. His studies were interrupted by World War II and he was in the paratroopers in England preparing for the D-Day landings. Eisenhower and Churchill came to view his unit before the beginning of the invasion and Ike asks Malarkey what he did before the war. He said he was a student at the University of Oregon in Eugene, and Ike asks him who won the last Oregon vs Oregon State Football game. Of course Ike played football for Army at West Point.

It is fun to walk around the tailgate parties before the game because you see Ducks and Beavers together. There is a scene in the movie Gettysburg where a confederate general tells a British Army officer who is there as an observer just before Pickett's charge that "All Virginia is here today". At each Oregon vs Oregon State Football game I like to think "all Oregon is here today."
Jon Wilner, of the San Jose Mercury news in California rates the rivalry football games in the Pac-10 and rates the "Civil War" game as the #1 rivalry game when he writes:

"1. The Civil War.

These days, Oregon-Oregon State has the best combination of passion, significance and competitiveness.

The passion takes the form of hatred — much closer to the Arizona-ASU situation than a healthy dislike.

OSU looks with jealousy at its richer, more-famous, more hip neighbor and wonders what might have been if Phil Knight had gone to OSU. The Ducks hate OSU because they’ve been told to hate OSU for decades.

The games are usually high scoring, although not always close, and the home team has dominated this decade.....

Without question, Oregon and Oregon State have been the most successful natural rivals in the conference in recent years. And that makes the Civil War the league’s best rivalry."

I first learned to hate the Beavers in the late 1960's when the Beavers, regularly under coach Dee Andros,( The Great Pumpkin) beat the shi* out of Oregon Duck Teams and did it with such relish.

A number years ago Dee, long retired, not too long before his death, came to a joint Duck/Beaver "Civil War" lunch in Medford and gave a passionate speech about the "Civil War" game that made me want to strap on a helmet and start playing right there. When Dee Andros walked into the banquet room he was wearing a god awful bright orange blazer and a black and orange striped tie. A local young TV sports reporter, who had probably just moved to this area, walked up to him and asked him if he was an Oregon State fan ..... it brought a smile to my face.

(Dee Andros was a veteran of World War II where he served four years in the U.S. Marine Corps. He was awarded the Bronze Star and spent more than a month under heavy fire on Iwo Jima. He was present at the famed moment when Marines raised the American flag on Iwo Jima.)

In my lifetime I can remember twice when the Duck were denied a trip to the Rose Bowl because of a loss to the Beaver..... The first, was in 1964 when I was in high school and listened to the game on a transistor radio at a speech tournament I was competing in. The Beavers won and went to the Rose Bowl. The second, was in 2000 when I spent part of the game at a hospital with a dying relative.

This has been a bad season for the Beavers and they would dearly love to beat the Ducks while we are "down" A win by them will make their season and Oregon fans will hear about it from our Beaver "friends" for the next 12 long months.Oregon  should remember they hate our guts ! They always cheer for us to lose regardless of who we are playing. There is no Pac 12 Championship to play for, there is no Rose Bowl  or National Championship to play for; BUT, there is "the right to live in the state of Oregon!!!

Just remember Ducks, the Beavers will come at us like mad dogs !

Let's go Ducks Win the Day!

Go Ducks beat the Beavers.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

50 Years Ago!

Every "Baby Boomer" remembers where he was 50 years ago when he first heard the news. This is my story.
I was a junior in high school at North Bend High in North Bend, Oregon on the Oregon coast. I was in my Junior English class, the last class, before our "activity period" which would be followed by the lunch break.  Class was interrupted by an announcement by our Principal, R.V. Wilson, over the school's intercom system, that "President Kennedy has been shot in Dallas Texas".  The very first words spoken in my class were from  fellow student D*** O****** sitting in the desk right behind mine,  who said:  "Wickre, it was you right wing extremists!" Our English teacher Rudy Sellei, who had been in the 1956 Hungarian Uprising against Soviet occupation, replied: "we don't know who did it."
The radio coverage of the news was then piped into the school's intercom system for the rest of the day.  A TV was then set up in our cafeteria during the lunch period and school continued. Because of my well known opinions on politics, even at that age, I witnessed some very unfriendly looks for the rest of the day.
 I was a member of the local chapter of Young Americans for Freedom (YAF) and was working in the "Draft Goldwater" campaign.
Some fellow YAF members a few miles away at Marshfield High in Coos Bay had similar experiences. Two of them were caught laughing over an unrelated joke and the rumor spread like wildfire through the school that they were happy about the assassination.
Only later did we learn that Oswald was a Communist who had lived in the Soviet Union and was a supporter of Fidel Castro.  
I also remember that day the tears that flowed from our female foreign exchange student from Greece. Just the summer before she had joined  my family at our cabin on the lake at Lakeside.  We had argued that night about Kennedy and Goldwater.  At the end of the school year she wrote this this in my high school annual:
"Boy, I will never forget the fight we have had about Kennedy and Goldwater that night on your cottage on Lakeside. Remember? ......"
Yes, I remember

Like most Americans we spent the next few days, through the weekend, glued to the TV as events unfolded.  Our collective hearts broke to watch little John-John salute his dad's coffin!
Regardless of my dislike of  John Kennedy I was crushed  that our political system could be corrupted by an assassination. Things like that did not happen in modern America. It would not be the end.... we still had 1968 before us!
Going back in time, I had been a supporter of Richard Nixon in the campaign against Kennedy in 1960.  I had stayed up way beyond my bedtime hoping Nixon would pull it out in California on election night. Only later did I learn Kennedy and LBJ had stolen the election in Texas and Illinois. For the next two years I had a large poster picture of Nixon on the closet door of my bedroom.  After Nixon lost his race for Governor of California in 1962, I read Barry Goldwater's book "Conscience of a Conservative" and joined Bill Buckley's YAF and started to work in the Draft Goldwater movement.
I was unimpressed by the so called Kennedy coolness  and was repulsed by  how journalist fawned over him. Some things never change.  I believed he deserted the Cuban Freedom Fighters at the Bay of Pigs, gave up too much to the Soviets to end the Cuban Missile Crisis* and used thug tactics in sending the FBI to make midnight calls to intimidate steel executives to end the steel strike. It was only later that we learned about Marilyn Monroe and an affair with mob boss mistress Judith Exner.  
The assassination guaranteed the election of LBJ in 1964 which led to his incompetent leadership in conducting the Vietnam War and the not so "Great Society." This led to the destructive 1960's that damaged the fabric of American society which we are still witnessing today. 
*a little over a year before as a sophomore, I had been in the high school library when the school administration issued a flyer on what their plans were  for school evacuation if the Soviets launched a nuclear strike against the United States. Depending on the amount of warning we would either be sent home or kept at school.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013


By Lisa Myers and Hannah RappleyeNBC News
President Obama repeatedly assured Americans that after the Affordable Care Act became law, people who liked their health insurance would be able to keep it. But millions of Americans are getting or are about to get cancellation letters for their health insurance under Obamacare, say experts, and the Obama administration has known that for at least three years.

President received 4 Pinocchio's from the Washington Post .

Has National Review gone "Establishment Republican"?

Erick Erickson of the Red State Blog writes:

In William F. Buckley’s mission statement for National Review, written in 1955, he did not mention winning elections. That’s not to say it is unimportant, unneeded, or unwanted. But it was not mentioned. In fact, Buckley wrote, “We believe that truth is neither arrived at nor illuminated by monitoring election results, binding though these are for other purposes, but by other means, including a study of human experience.”
What was mentioned was standing athwart history yelling stop. Buckley sought to build a National Review that provided commentary on the landscape of American politics and culture, building an intellectual case for conservatism. Today’s National Review is willing occasionally to yell Stop. It did so notably on the proliferation of porn in culture. But on many of the day’s fights, the editorial positions read more like those of the Republican National Committee than the standard bearer of American conservatism.
In 1955, William F. Buckley wrote,
Conservatives in this country — at least those who have not made their peace with the New Deal, and there is serious question whether there are others — are non-licensed nonconformists; and this is dangerous business in a Liberal world, as every editor of this magazine can readily show by pointing to his scars. Radical conservatives in this country have an interesting time of it, for when they are not being suppressed or mutilated by the Liberals, they are being ignored or humiliated by a great many of those of the well-fed Right, whose ignorance and amorality have never been exaggerated for the same reason that one cannot exaggerate infinity.
The present editors of National Review, over the last several years, have made it clearer and clearer that they now speak mostly for the well-fed right
and not for conservatives hungering for a fight against the leviathan. 

Read the rest here:

I love the ending:

National Review once believed, “that truth is neither arrived at nor illuminated by monitoring election results, binding though these are for other purposes, but by other means, including a study of human experience.” The truth is that Obamacare is deeply destructive and an assault on individual liberty. It should be fought by all means, with or without a Senate majority or White House. The fight should not depend on electoral outcomes and should not be delayed pending reinforcements, many of whom will flee the field once elected.
I await the well-fed editors apologizing for the Goldwater candidacy. At this point, it is only a matter of time.

Me: I long for the old National Review....... I miss Bill Buckley!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

A Young Judy Collins sings "Bob Dylan's Dream"

Approximately in 1966, Judy Collins performs a cover of  "Bob Dylan's Dream" on Pete Seeger's "Rainbow Quest" TV show. Best version of the song I have heard (including Dylan's) by a beautiful Judy Collins.

Rainbow Quest (1965–66) was a U.S. television series devoted to folk music and hosted by Pete Seeger. It was videotaped in black-and-white and featured musicians playing in traditional American music genres such as traditional folk music, old-time music, bluegrass and blues. The show's title is drawn from the lyrics of the song by Seeger "Oh, Had I A Golden Thread".39 shows, each 52 minutes long, were recorded in 1965–66 at WNJU-TV (Channel 47), a New York City-based UHF station with studios in Newark, New Jersey. The shows were broadcast by Channel 47, primarily a Spanish-language outlet, to a very limited audience because only televisions equipped with a UHF antenna and tuner could receive them, and reception was difficult in an age prior to cable. For a few years in 1967–68, the shows were repeated on public television station WNDT (Channel 13, now WNET.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

WHY THEY FIGHT by By Brit Hume

Senator Cruz and his adherents do not view things in conventional terms. They look back over the past half-century, including the supposedly golden era of Ronald Reagan, and see the uninterrupted forward march of the American left. Entitlement spending never stopped growing. The regulatory state continued to expand. The national debt grew and grew and finally in the Obama years, exploded. They see an American population becoming unrecognizable from the free and self-reliant people they thought they knew. And they see the Republican Party as having utterly failed to stop the drift toward an unfree nation supervised by an overweening and bloated
bureaucracy. They are not interested in Republican policies that merely slow the growth of this leviathan. They want to stop it and reverse it. And they want to show their supporters they'll try anything to bring that about."

Wednesday, October 09, 2013

Washington Week Part III: It took a Duck to deliver the "W"

The Washington Huskies are very proud of the remodel of the "Mistake by the Lake" but it took an Oregon Duck to delivery their "W" to the remade stadium.

Tuesday, October 08, 2013

Washington Week Part II "THE PICK"

 I have re-edited a post I made a few years ago for "Washington Week," the week the Oregon Ducks play the Washington Huskies in football. In Washington Week Part I (posted below) I outlined why Oregon fans learned to hate the Huskies and were always losing to them. Now on to Part II.

Washington Week Part II: "The Pick"

On October 22, 1994, Oregon football changed. The 1994 season didn't start out that way. Oregon lost to Hawaii, Utah and Washington State. There were only 25,000 fans at Autzen for Utah. At that game I looked around the parking lot and wondered "where is everybody?." The Ducks had beaten U$C in LA but we thought it was a fluke. Then came the Washington game in Eugene on October 22, 1994. I didn't want to drive three hours from Medford to Eugene to watch another Washington "blow out" of the Ducks. ( see post below) I had been there too many times before. In those days with two teenage children at home my kids took turns going to the games with me as we had two season tickets. It was my daughter's turn and so we drove to Eugene. I always like to park on the campus side of the Willamette River and take the footbridge over to Autzen. On a nice day it's a wonderful walk over the river and through the woods to Autzen. I parked on Franklin Blvd. and walked by the New Oregon Motel. It was full of Husky fans. We had also stopped by the book-store on campus and it was full of Husky fans. We got to the game and took our seats in SECTION 13 and the game started. Washington was ranked the # 9 team in the nation. Oregon kept it close. Oregon was leading by four points when Washington scored to go ahead 20 - 17 with 7:44 minutes to play. The game seemed to unfold as it had so often. "nice try"..." a moral victory" ... "close but no cigar". NOT THIS TIME. Danny O'Neil Oregon's QB led the Ducks on a 98 yard drive to regain the lead. It will forever be known as "The Drive." The Ducks now led 24-17 with 2:40 to go in the game. Washington then started their own drive and advanced to the Duck 8 yard line with 1:09 to play. With each yard the Huskies made, every Duck fan knew that Washington would score and win the game as they had so many times before. " So close, but no cigar." Then there was a play that will live forever in every Duck heart. Washington had plenty of time to give the ball to heralded tail back Napolean Kaufman. Instead, QB Damon Huard threw the ball in the flat toward Dave Janoski. Kenny Wheaton the Oregon CB timed the throw perfectly and stepped in front of the Washington receiver and intercepted the ball and ran it all the way back for another Duck touchdown to win the game 31-20. I was standing watching the play with my daughter. We both began to jump up and down!!! We then hugged as we both jumped up and down!!!. It was redemption! My daughter and I will always have that moment in time. On my dying day I will remember it. The play became known as "THE PICK". It is shown on the big screen at every Oregon home game just as the team comes on the field. Jerry Allen, the radio broadcaster's call of the play, has become a favorite of Duck fans... "KENNY WHEATON'S GOING TO SCORE....KENNY WHEATON'S GOING TO SCORE" I have a framed print of the play hanging in my office.(See picture above) After the game the many Husky fans looked crushed. The three hour trip back to Medford was like floating on air. Oregon went on to win the Pac 10 Championship that year and the entire family went to the Rose Bowl. It was the Ducks first time since 1958.
It was the beginning of the Golden Age of Duck Football ! Lets Go Ducks!... Beat the Huskies!

Here is "The Pick" on YouTube!

Monday, October 07, 2013

Washington Week Part I (or How I Learned to HATE the HUSKIES!)

This is a re post of a post I make every year when the Oregon Ducks play the Washington Huskies with a few minor changes.

To every Oregon Duck Fan "Washington Week" is the week the University of Oregon Ducks play the University of Washington Huskies in football. This year the game will be Saturday in Seattle at the "Mistake by the Lake." 1 PM (PT) on FOX SPORTS 1 on TV. To make it even more special ESPN Gameday will be there earlier in the morning.

There has been bad blood between these two schools for years.. It started in 1948 when there was a tie between Cal and Oregon to go to the Rose Bowl. In those days ties were settled by a vote of the Pac 8 schools. (the Arizona schools were then not part of the conference.) Oregon expected the Northwest schools to stick together but Washington voted for Cal and as a consolation the Ducks led by QB Norm Van Brocklin went to the Cotton Bowl. Before Autzen stadium was built Oregon would play some of it's home games against Washington at Multnomah Stadium in Portland. In the 50's it was not unheard of for fistfights to erupt in the stands between Duck and Washington fans. In 1968 I drove to Seattle to watch Oregon beat Washington 3 to 0 on a Ken Woody field goal during a rain swept game. During the 1970's, 1980's and into the 1990's Washington dominated the Ducks and were the premier team in the Northwest. Husky fans would descend on Eugene and Autzen Stadium in their god awful purple and would almost outnumber the Duck yellow and green. They would fill up Eugene hotels like locusts and bring their large band. Husky fans became known for their arrogance. Once on a trip to Seattle I ask a Husky fan the outcome of a game and was treated like a fool to expect anything but a Husky win. My Dad, not a football fan, was treated the same way when he struck up a conversation with a Husky fan at a hotel before an Oregon/Washington game. I know it's only a game but I learned to hate the Huskies and their fans.( Every time I start to get too smug as an Oregon fan I always try and tell myself "remember don't be like a Husky fan") At Husky home games they would blow their siren after each score as they beat the sh** out of hapless  Oregon Duck teams. That all ended on October 22,1994, and I was there!!! (Has it been 19 years!) To be continued... Lets Go Ducks

Win the Day 

Friday, October 04, 2013

House GOP Taking Steps to Fund Our Government


“Republicans continue to listen to the American people and take steps to keep critical parts of the government running,” said Speaker Boehner.
Here’s a running tally of recent measures passed by the House of Representatives, almost all of which are being blocked by Senate Democrats and President Obama who refuse to negotiate with Republicans to fund our government. We’ll continue to add to this list in the days ahead.
SEPTEMBER 20, 2013
Continuing resolution: keeps the government running at current spending levels and strengthens our economy by defunding the president’ health care law.
SEPTEMBER 28, 2013
Continuing resolution: keeps the government running at current spending levels and strengthens our economy by delaying the president’s health care law by one year, and permanently repealing ObamaCare’s tax on pacemakers and children’s hearing aids.
Pay Our Military Act (H.R. 3210): ensures our troops would be paid in the event of a government shutdown.
SEPTEMBER 30, 2013
Continuing resolution: keeps the government running at current spending levels; ensures there’s no special treatment for Congress under the president’s health care law; and delays ObamaCare’s individual mandate, providing all Americans with the same relief the president has given big businesses.
Continuing resolution: insists on plan to fund the government running at current spending levels; ensure there’s no special treatment for Congress under the president’s health care law; delays ObamaCare’s individual mandate, providing all Americans with the same relief the president has given big businesses; and requests a formal House-Senate conference to resolve differences.
OCTOBER 1, 2013
Speaker Boehner appoints negotiators to a formal House-Senate conference.
OCTOBER 2, 2013
Provide Local Funding for the District of Columbia Act (H.J. Res. 71): allows our nation’s capital to continue operating using its own funding.
Open Our Nation's Parks and Museums Act (H.J. Res. 70): opens all of our national parks and museums, including the WWII Memorial in Washington, DC that was initially closed to veterans by the administration.
Research for Lifesaving Cures Act (H.J. Res. 73): provides funding for the National Institute of Health, which is responsible for lifesaving medical innovations and cancer research.
OCTOBER 3, 2013
Pay Our Guard and Reserve Act (H.R. 3230): ensures the government shutdown doesn’t affect pay for our National Guard and Reserve.
Honoring Our Promise to America’s Veterans Act (H.J. Res. 72): provides immediate funding for critical veterans benefits and services, including disability claims, education and training, and more.
OCTOBER 4, 2013
National Emergency and Disaster Recovery Act (H.J. Res 85): provides immediate funding for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
Nutrition Assistance for Low-Income Women and Children Act (H.J. Res. 75): provides immediate funding for the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children, which “serves nearly 9 million mothers and young children,” and provides “vital nutrition that poor families might otherwise be unable to afford.”
- See more at:

Wednesday, October 02, 2013

Government Shutdown: James Madison Planned it this Way!

James Madison, a future President of the United States, was the prime drafter of the United States Constitution. After it was adopted by the Constitutional Congress he wrote Federalist 58 in support of it's adoption by the individual  States. On the Power of the House of Representatives.

James Madison, in Federalist 58, assumed that the House's "power of the purse" would control

The House of Representatives cannot only refuse, but they alone can propose, the supplies requisite for the support of government. They, in a word, hold the purse that powerful instrument by which we behold, in the history of the British Constitution, an infant and humble representation of the people gradually enlarging the sphere of its activity and importance, and finally reducing, as far as it seems to have wished, all the overgrown prerogatives of the other branches of the government. This power over the purse may, in fact, be regarded as the most complete and effectual weapon with which any constitution can arm the immediate representatives of the people, for obtaining a redress of every grievance, and for carrying into effect every just and salutary measure.

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

President Obama, Open Mt. Rushmore!

The Republicans in the Peoples House, the House of Representatives, have voted money to open up  Mt Rushmore and all of our National Parks but President Obama and the Democrats in the Senate have refused.

Republicans in the House have also voted to keep the Veterans Administration and the Government of Washington D.C. open but it is being held hostage by President Obama and the Democrats. The want all or nothing and will not negotiate. Who are the extremist? 

Friday, September 27, 2013

25 Republicans that Voted with Harry Reid

The following is the Republican List Of Shame. They voted today with every Democrat Senator to fund Obamacare.

Lamar Alexander (R-TN)
Kelly Ayotte (R-NH)
John Barrasso (R-WY)
Roy Blunt (R-MO) John Boozman (R-AR)
Richard Burr (R-NC)
Saxby Chambliss (R-GA)
Jeff Chiesa (R-NJ) Daniel Coats (R-IN)
Tom Coburn (R-OK)
Thad Cochran (R-MS)
Susan Collins (R-ME)
Bob Corker (R-TN)
John Cornyn (R-TX)
Lindsey Graham (R-SC)
John Hoeven (R-ND)
Johnny Isakson (R-GA)
Mike Johanns (R-NE)
Mark Kirk (R-IL)
Ron Johnson (R-WI)
John McCain (R-AZ)
Mitch McConnell (R-KY)
Lisa Murkowski (R-AK)
John Thune (R-SD)
Roger Wicker (R-MS)

 This vote for cloture  ended debate and allowed Harry Reid to strip the House provision on NOT funding Obamacare from the budget.  It was the KEY procedural vote and they knew it.  This vote will stick like glue to them for the rest of their political lives.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Republicans: "Fix Bayonets!" by Pat Buchanan

After his narrow defeat by Gerald Ford at the Kansas City convention in 1976, Ronald Reagan was seen as a has-been.

Came the Carter-Torrijos treaties of 1977, however, which gave away the Panama Canal, and the old cowboy strapped on his guns:

   “We bought It. We paid for it. It’s ours. And we’re gonna keep it.”
America loved it. Bill Buckley said we must recognize reality and transfer the canal. GOP Senate leader Howard Baker was the toast of the city as he led 16 Republicans to vote with Jimmy Carter. The treaties were approved.

Reagan’s consolation prize? The presidency of the United States.

Voters in New Hampshire in 1980, remembering his lonely stand, rewarded Reagan with a decisive victory over George H. W. Bush, who had defeated Reagan in Iowa. When Howard Baker came in, he was greeted as “Panama Howie,” and did not survive the primary.
The Republican war over whether to bow to the seemingly inevitable and fund Obamacare is a Panama Canal issue. How one votes here may decisively affect one’s career.

Ted Cruz may have, as Richard Nixon used to say, “broken his pick” in the Republican caucus. Yet, on Obamacare, his analysis is right, his instincts are right, his disposition to fight is right.
These are more important matters than the news that he is out of the running for the Mr. Congeniality award on Capitol Hill.
If Obamacare is funded, the subsidies starting in January will constitute a morphine drip from which America’s health-care system will not recover. If not stopped now, Obamacare is forever.
Senate Republicans should be asking themselves why Cruz and Rand Paul, two newcomers to the Senate of decidedly different temperaments, are being talked of as credible candidates in the presidential primaries of 2016.
Answer: Both are clear in their convictions, unapologetic about them and willing to break some china to achieve them. And that part of America upon which the GOP depends most is increasingly frustrated and angry with those who run the national party.
Order Pat Buchanan’s brilliant and prescient books at WND’s Superstore.
Americans don’t want a dignified surrender on Obamacare. They want someone to drive a stake through Obamacare.
And the question that is going to be answered in coming weeks is: Is the GOP willing to shove its whole stack into the middle of the table, for a showdown over Obamacare? Or will the House GOP in the end cast the decisive vote to make Obamacare permanent?
For, as columnist Terry Jeffrey writes, “[M]ake no mistake. If Obamacare is funded and implemented, it will be because Republican members of Congress decided to do it.”
As Terry notes, Congress has absolute power over the public purse. Article I of the Constitution says, “No money shall be drawn from the Treasury but in consequence of appropriations made by law.”
The law authorizing President Obama to spend more money for Obamacare expires Sept. 30. If the House refuses to vote for any bill that contains new Obamacare funding, Obamacare is dead.
Thus the Republican House controls the fate of Obamacare.
But if we don’t fund Obamacare, comes the Republican wail, Harry Reid will let the government shut down, the American people will blame us, and all of our pundits say we can’t win this fight.
For sure you cannot win if you do not fight.
But if a Democratic Senate refuses to pass the House-passed continuing resolution funding the government, because Obamacare is not in the bill, who is shutting down the government?
If Obama vetoes any continuing resolution funding the government that does not contain Obamacare, who is shutting down the government then?
Who is putting the U.S. economy at risk to protect a bollixed program the American people do not want and Congress would never approve if they voted on it today?
What House Republicans have lacked is not courage, but a political and communications strategy.
Having provided a continuing resolution to fund the government, except Obamacare, the House should next begin passing CRs – one for each department. A CR to fund defense and veterans affairs. A CR to fund state, the CIA and Homeland Security. A CR for justice, transportation, energy, etc. One every day.
Would Harry Reid refuse to fund the U.S. Army and Navy unless John Boehner’s House stuffs Obamacare into the defense budget?
Do Republicans really feel incapable of winning this argument?
Are Republicans so tongue-tied they cannot convince America of the truth: They have already voted to fund the government.
If Republicans capitulate and lose this battle, and this unwanted mess passes into law, there is something deeply wrong with the party.
Two weeks ago, a brave Congress, listening to America, stood up and told Obama: Your red lines be damned; we’re not voting for war on Syria.
Now House Republicans need to tell the country: Come hell or high water, we’re not voting to fund Obamacare. We will pass a CR on everything else in the budget, but Obamacare is not coming out of this House alive.


Thursday, September 19, 2013

Conservatives ..... Time to Rally to Ted Cruz and go on Offense!

 Wonderful article by Andrew Ferguson  of the Weekly Standard:

When you follow him around, however—for he is in constant motion, from Iowa to New Hampshire to every corner of Texas—this nasty fellow you’ve been reading about, the caricature Cruz, never appears. If “Ted Cruz” didn’t exist, professional Democrats and the mainstreamers in the Washington press corps would have to invent him.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Obamacare Strikes Home!

Obamacare struck the Wickre home yesterday.  My wife's health Insurance premium went up by $319 per month! YES, $319 PER MONTH! That's an additional $3828.00 per year for health insurance for one person. We are both self employed and have  purchased our own health insurance through Regence Blue Cross/BlueShield of Oregon for the last 33 years! Being self employed we have kept our premium costs under control through high deductibles which Obama will no longer allow us to purchase. In addition, the coverage in some areas such as copayments is actually higher under Obamacare. In addition, Obama has loaded up the policy with things such as alcohol treatment and mental health coverage we don't need. My wife  doesn't drink, smoke and her only mental heath issue is me.

Time for the Republicans to shut the government down until this monstrosity is repealed.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

The Family at the Beach in Duck, North Carolina

Jim, Janie, John & Jennifer (with Wiley too) at the beach in Duck, North Carolina on the Outer Banks.

We had a family reunion before we all went to Charlottesville, Virginia  for a collage football game between the Oregon Ducks and the Virginia Cavaliers.   Ducks Won the Day!

With both of our children living back East this was a wonderful trip for all of us to be back together again.

Sunday, September 01, 2013

Mr. President: "NO" Confidence!

The British have a vote of "No Confidence" when the members of English Parliament  have lost faith in the Prime Minister and his government and want to force a new election.  The United States Constitution has no similar procedure,  but I believe members of Congress should vote NO on President Obama's request for military action against Syria.   Regardless of the merits of an attack on the evil regime in Syria and their use of chemical weapons on their own people, the U.S. Congress should vote NO because it has no confidence in President Obama's leadership in any such  attack.

He has shown himself to lack courage, decisiveness and judgment. Short of a direct attack on the United States no American soldiers, sailors or marines should be placed in harms way under his leadership. Why place American Armed Forces at risk when he will not back them up?

It could be argued that a failure to act on Syria will embolden the Iranian's in their development of nuclear weapons. However, they and we have already determined he will do nothing and  Israel is on it's own.  President Obama will be our President for three years and four months so American's better be hunkered down because, with or without, an attack on Syria, it will be a dangerous time because the bulwark of democracy has a weak, indecisive, self centered leader who lacks courage. I believe in our Constitution and he was constitutionally elected and America will have to live with it's democratic decision and hopefully learn from it's mistake.

He is a sorry excuse for a President  of the United States of America!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Senator Ted Cruz on Syria

HOUSTON, TX — U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) released the following statement regarding Syria:
Today, the legislative bodies of two of our closest allies are engaged in emergency meetings on the prospect of military engagement in Syria. In Great Britain, Prime Minister David Cameron has called the House of Commons home from vacation to deliberate over the use of force in Syria. In Israel, the Knesset’s Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee is reviewing potential responses should Israel be attacked in the fallout over action in Syria.
In Washington, DC, crickets are chirping.
It may be that there is a compelling case to be made that intervention in Syria is necessary to defend U.S. interests. But to date no such case has been made by President Obama, leaving those of us in Congress with some serious questions.
The President has in the past insisted that Assad must go, but this week his press secretary insisted that regime change is not part of any planned action in Syria. Given this lack of strategic consistency, Congress has every right to ask what the basic purpose of this action would be? On Monday, Secretary of State John Kerry expressed certainty that the Assad regime was responsible for the attack, but today we are learning there are outstanding questions about who actually ordered it and who controls the weapons. Given this confusion, Congress has every right to ask what the basis is for action at this time? In a press interview yesterday, the President said that the “very limited” action he is considering “may have a positive impact on our national security.” Given this modest mandate and uncertain outcome, Congress has every right to ask why we are considering this action at all?
According to the Constitution, only Congress has the authority to declare war. While the Commander in Chief must have the flexibility to act in the event of an imminent threat, the President’s comments suggest this does not currently exist in Syria. There is time for debate, and no more important subject for Congress to consider. Deploying our armed forces is a serious commitment of the highest order, and we should only consider it in cases where our vital national security interests are at stake. Our allies have demonstrated a willingness to do proper due diligence on this issue. We owe it to the men and women in our armed forces, who would execute this mission, to do no less. When and if President Obama makes a decision on Syria, he must immediately call a special session of Congress and persuade the American people that what he proposes is critical to the defense of our nation. I am confident all members of Congress would willingly return to Washington to work with him on this issue.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Drive In Movie Theatres

This time of year I think back fondly to the Drive-in Theaters of my youth. In the post World War II era , 1950's families were trying to find an entrainment option as they raised the "baby boom" generation. What follows is an "Oldie Goldie post" of a few years ago.

As a kid I loved drive in theaters .In fact, if I were to pick the favorite thing of my youth it would be drive-in movies. I grew up in Ogden, Utah; Boise, Idaho; Roseburg, Oregon; and Coos Bay/North Bend, Oregon in the 1950's. Each of these  towns had drive in theaters. I can remember going to two or three movies a week in Ogden in the summer before we had TV. This was when I was 4 or 5. My dad didn't like indoor movies because as he said there was always someone behind him chewing on gum which he hated. My mom would make us sandwiches (usually tuna) along with Kool-Aid in a thermos and cookies.(Coke was too expensive) There was always a commercial before the intermission between the double features for the snack bar food. I remember an ad for a foreign food I had never heard of called "pizza". My dad said it tasted like card board so we never got any. My mom loved pop corn so we always got some. To draw family's the theaters sometimes had special attractions like pony rides or steam engine train rides. I still have a black & white photo in my "movie room" of my sister and I on ponies taken at a drive-in theater before the movie. We must have been 4 and 6 years of age. It is one of my favorite pictures. They all had playground equipment we would play on till the movie started. The movie always started with a cartoon. I remember running to the car
 as the cartoon started. I even loved and still love the previews. Before the movie dad's would often turn on their spot lights and play games on the screen.

The movies, or "shows" as we called them, often,  in retrospect , were not that good. I can remember Ma &Pa Kettle, Here Come the Nelsons ( Ozzie and Harriet before TV) and the Bowery Boys. Not real sophisticated stuff. But their was always John Wayne. I can remember campaigning for weeks to go see "Blood Alley". Not because I knew anything about it other than it's name and John Wayne was in it. I loved saying "Blooooood Alley." I knew if Jeff Chandler was in a movie I could talk my mom into going. My sister who still likes to go to bed early would always sleep through the second feature but not me. My dad would always make fun of the kissing scenes and my mom would always kid us about the hero being the only one left standing at the end of  war/western movies. My mom would put her head on my dad's shoulder and fall asleep. The sound was usually terrible but I loved the big screen and how it transported me out of small town America in the days before color TV. Most of them are gone now the victim of VCR's and now DVD's and high land prices. I still miss them.
If I could go back in time to be with Mom & Dad & Marva it would be at a John Wayne western at a drive in movie.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Happy 38th Wedding Anniversary

Happy Anniversary Dear!
38 years ago today I married Janie at the Perozzi Fountain, Lithia Park, in Ashland Oregon.  During those 38 years we have not only been husband and wife but business partners who work together in our office every day.  .  We have for those 38 years been  basically together 24/7. Her strengths compliment my weakness.  While I tend to be a dreamer and idealist she is  practical and a realist.  I couldn't have ask for a better mother for our two children. I am sure they inherited her smarts and my passion. I would be lost without her.   She is my best friend.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Ted Cruz, Traitor to his Class

Rich Lowery of National Review has great column on why Progressives,  aka Liberals, hate Ted Cruz. Some quotes:

Democrats and liberal pundits would surely dislike Cruz no matter where he went to school, but his pedigree adds an extra element of shocked disbelief to the disdain. “Princeton and Harvard should be disgraced,” former Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell exclaimed on MSNBC, as if graduating a constitutionalist conservative who rises to national prominence is a violation of the schools’ mission statements.....

One of the left’s deepest prejudices is that its opponents are stupid, and Cruz tramples on it....

Cruz lacks all defensiveness about his positions, another source of annoyance to his opponents, who are used to donning the mantle of both intellectual and moral superiority.
Ted Cruz has picked up the flag that fell when  Bill Buckley died!

Read more:

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Camille Paglia on Hillary Clinton

"As a registered Democrat, I am praying for a credible presidential candidate to emerge from the younger tier of politicians in their late 40s. A governor with executive experience would be ideal. It’s time to put my baby-boom generation out to pasture! We’ve had our day and managed to muck up a hell of a lot. It remains baffling how anyone would think that Hillary Clinton (born the same year as me) is our party’s best chance. She has more sooty baggage than a 90-car freight train. And what exactly has she ever accomplished — beyond bullishly covering for her philandering husband? She’s certainly busy, busy and ever on the move — with the tunnel-vision workaholism of someone trying to blot out uncomfortable private thoughts.
I for one think it was a very big deal that our ambassador was murdered in Benghazi. In saying “I take responsibility” for it as secretary of state, Hillary should have resigned immediately. The weak response by the Obama administration to that tragedy has given a huge opening to Republicans in the next presidential election. The impression has been amply given that Benghazi was treated as a public relations matter to massage rather than as the major and outrageous attack on the U.S. that it was.
Throughout history, ambassadors have always been symbolic incarnations of the sovereignty of their nations and the dignity of their leaders. It’s even a key motif in “King Lear.” As far as I’m concerned, Hillary disqualified herself for the presidency in that fist-pounding moment at a congressional hearing when she said, “What difference does it make what we knew and when we knew it, Senator?” Democrats have got to shake off the Clinton albatross and find new blood. The escalating instability not just in Egypt but throughout the Mideast is very ominous. There is a clash of cultures brewing in the world that may take a century or more to resolve — and there is no guarantee that the secular West will win."’s_best_chance/

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Oregon Duck Coach Helfrich: "Drop DirecTV. Make the Switch Today!"

New campaign by Pac-12 Networks to go after DircTV for not carrying the Pac 12 Networks.  Make the switch to Dish!!!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Ted Cruz 2016

The left wing Daily Beast has a "news story" on Ted Cruz which they think is negative.  However, I think Ted should put it on his website minus the headline.  My favorite quote from the article:

"More than anyone I knew, Ted seemed to have arrived in college with a fully formed worldview,” Butler College colleague Erik Leitch said.  “And what strikes me now, looking at him as an adult and hearing the things he's saying, it seems like nothing has changed. Four years of an Ivy League education, Harvard Law, and years of life experience have altered nothing."

Some truths are self evident!

Another great quote:

While Cruz may have been disliked, and intensely so, by many of his classmates, he found a close and longtime friend in a gregarious, popular student from Jamaica named David Panton, who became Cruz’s tag-team partner on Princeton’s renowned debate squad, as well as his roommate for the remainder of their time at Princeton and when they both attended Harvard Law School. .....

“Unlike what others may say, I consider Ted to be very kind. He is a very, very gentle-hearted person,” Panton told The Daily Beast. "He took me under his wing and was a mentor to me. He was very kind to me. I am a much smarter and much better person today because of Ted Cruz."

Monday, August 12, 2013

Summer of 2013

 We are in the "dog days" of Summer.  All the stores have their summer merchandise on half price and "Back to School" merchandise is everywhere. With no Olympics or Political Conventions I have kept myself occupied with all of those household projects.  I always want to get them done before  the college football season starts.  So far this summer I put up the gazebo on the back deck,  spread over 250 wheelbarrow loads of pea gravel on the walkways around our home, spread bark, cleaned the garage, done paint touch up, washed our window blinds, wash windows on both floors inside and out, and steam cleaned the carpets on all three floors while keeping up with my weekly chores such as laundry, vacuuming, and yard work.

I try and schedule steam cleaning the carpets for August so I can open the doors and windows to get the carpets to dry faster.  However earlier in the week the smoke from the local forest fires made that impossible.  However we had a glorious weekend and I was able to open all the windows and the carpets were ready for me to put back the furniture in 24 hours.

Next weekend it is time to celebrate the important birthday of a family member and the following weekend our 38th Wedding Anniversary. Then Labor Day weekend the college football season begins.


Thursday, August 08, 2013

You Are Never Too Old for Popsicles

What with the forest fire smoke here in Southern Oregon you need to find other things of Summer to enjoy and sometimes it is the simple things of life that give pleasure. One of the things I like in the summer are Popsicles. Now, I have switched to "sugar free" Popsicle but they taste great. Enjoy the Summer!