Did you wonder?

August 18, 2014

I sure miss the country I grew up in, and no I
didn’t move. At some point our country has changed
into something unrecognizable.

mchenry

202 years ago last week Fort McHenry was attacked
by the British during the War of 1812. 19 ships
and 5,000 men fired around 1,800 cannon rounds at
the fort.

British forces also attacked by land after their
successful campaign against Washington, D.C.

1,000 men defended the fort, but when the smoke
cleared the following day old glory still fluttered
in the breeze.

The aftermath saw 4 dead and 24 wounded in Fort
McHenry, the British had 330 killed, wounded, or
captured and America’s pride was restored. Oh yeah,
it’s also said this battle inspired Francis Scott
Key to write “The Star Spangled Banner”.

But were there parades or headlines about the
anniversary? We saw none. Instead we heard about
Obama cutting his vacation short, the Obama press
conference about Iraq and the problems in Missouri,
about Al Sharpton heading there, and news of
someone crossing our southern border dressed as
Osama Bin Laden.

Nothing about the battle in Boston that some say
was the turning point of the war. So now we present
two versions our anthem. The first is historically
inaccurate, but moving; and the second has verses
you may not have heard but are part of the anthem.

All 4 verses of the Star Spangled Banner can be
found here.

When we, as a nation, don’t acknowledge important
events such as these how can we expect others to
take our patriotism seriously?
Comments are always welcome.


A tribute

August 18, 2014

The Henry Gregor Felsen Tribute Car Show will be
held Sunday, September 21st, at the Historic Valley
Junction in West Des Moines, Iowa starting at 9 am.

hot_rod

The words that Felsen wrote painted a picture in
my mind at an early age that hasn’t diminished with
the passage of time. I read his entire rodding
series.  That series alone sold over 8 million copies.

Hot Rod, Street Rod, Crash Club, Boy Gets Car,
Here is Your Hobby: Car Customizing, A Teen-Ager’s
First Car, Living With Your First Motorcycle, and
others got my mind out of class while my body had
to stay.

We’re sure there are many of our generation who
remember these books, the life lessons that the
author placed in them, and the author. I know we
do.
Comments are always welcome.


What now?

August 14, 2014

At yesterday’s city council meeting the stadium
for St. Ambrose University didn’t make the cut and
the project on the Dock restaurant property was
tabled. Who said the circus left?

If we understand correctly, Assumption High School
can build a stadium close to or at the proposed
location on their whim. Since we don’t believe they
have a stadium, this seems plausable.

And all the hoopla over a belvedere on the river’s
edge seems silly. Belvedere is Italian for
“beautiful view” and Encyclopedia Britannica
explains it as ‘an architectural structure built in
an elevated position to provide lighting and
ventilation and to command a fine view.

Roofed but open one on one or more sides, a
belvedere may be located in the upper part of a
building or may stand as a separate structure. It
often assumes the form of a loggia, or open
gallery.’

ibelved001p1

One example is the towers at the Villa Medici in
Rome in the above picture by H. Roger-Viollet.

bel1

Another example is the Belvedere Garda shown
above. But the word can also mean an alcove,
casino, gazebo, kiosk, pavilion or summerhouse.

This far into the project surely somebody has an
idea of what our belvedere is going to look like,
but as yet we haven’t heard a lot. And running an
elevated walkway of some sort from the skybridge
to the building would make sense during flooding.

We have no car in this race so we really don’t
have a stand one way or the other. It would be nice
to have a restaurant there again and it would be
alright to just have green space.
Comments are always welcome.


Circus city

August 12, 2014

circus

Watching the latest committee of the whole meeting
brought back the thought that the circus never goes
away completely.

The proposed lease agreement on the Dock property
was being discussed and our mayor broke in with
questions concerning a belvedere. Even though it
had nothing to do with the lease agreement he kept
asking.

How is it that a project that has been in the
works for months, unanimously passed by council,
vetoed by the mayor, and again unanimously passed
by the council had him so confused?

Even we knew the city would pay for said
belvedere and would be responsible for upkeep. After
getting answers the mayor then asked about price,
which once more, had nothing to do with the lease
agreement.

We realize the mayor has feelings on how this
project should have gone, that’s why he vetoed it,
but that portion of the project has been voted on.

Then Goober went on a rant about the recent
Forbes study that put Davenport really high on
the worst 200 cities for job creation category.
But his argument just didn’t make sense.

He kept going on about how over the last 7 years
businesses had spent $750 million in upgrades and
new buildings. One project mentioned ran $25
million and created 9 jobs. In a city of just over
100,000 that’s not a lot.

And blaming it on the Illinois Quad Cities made
no sense either because with their higher taxes
one would think companies would migrate across the
river to Iowa for the lower taxes alone.

Some of us remember in our turbulent youth during
the 1960s quitting one good paying job and having
another job the next day paying just as well or
better.

Tomorrow night is a city council meeting where a
vote should take place on the St. Ambrose stadium
which our mayor vetoed after the council passed.
We hear the circus music again.
Comments are always welcome.


Things that should be banned

August 7, 2014

Recent news has brought to light some things that
we believe our country would be better off without.
Bear with us and we’ll explain what that means.

guns

Why do we have polls, and why are they in the news
so much? Case in point- a recent poll says only 13%
of Americans are happy with Congress. That would
also mean that 87% of us are not.

One would think come election time that almost all
incumbents would be voted out but instead they keep
getting re-elected. Is the poll wrong or the
voters?

The politically correct movement should also be
86’d and we should replace rhetoric with the truth.
Calling a manure spreader a sugar wagon does not
improve the smell.

The climate change idea should be put in a box,
sealed with strapping tape, and stored away. If
there is room Al Gore should also go in the box.

Political ads that smear the opponent should also
be banned. If you can’t run on the merits of your
actions you should keep the lies and innuendos to
yourself.

English as a second language should cease and
desist in our schools. Immigrants are welcome here
but should learn our language.

Excuses are like butt-holes, everybody has one. We
should insist responsibility for ones actions be
brought back. With rights come responsibilities.

Lastly, robo-calls from politicians should be an
offense punishable by law. And that is our short
list of things we can live without.
Comments are always welcome.


Hearing the circus music again

August 6, 2014

Shortly our City Council will meet and one of the
things slated to be discussed is a proposed city
run WiFi zone downtown. Rumors have been all over
the place with the service being free to costing
average rates.

We have internet providers in town, many will be
more than happy to bundle that service with phone
and cable or dish TV. And setting up a WiFi net-
work in either home or business isn’t that hard or
expensive if it is needed.

One Alderman stated it would be nice to able to
use your laptop on the riverfront and work while
watching the river. We just don’t see the need of
another city run business as we just got a news
bureau.

Of course a study will have to be done by out of
state companies to see if a need is there. Well
we’d bet the businesses would like free WiFi, but
is that the function of a city government?

We still have the potholes and bad roads, the
problems with our sewers in some areas, and the
problems we had. Our city is still not considered
business friendly no matter what our mayor says,
and even made Forbes worst job growth category.

Instead of bringing illegal children here and
trying to run free WiFi to our downtown, shouldn’t
fixing the existing problems be the priority?
Comments are always welcome.


Get packing

August 4, 2014

Because we respect our country and flag but not
our politicians, in November we will vote you out
of office. The reason for this simple. We pledge
allegiance to flag and country and gave an oath
to uphold the Constitution but not to the
government.

I was but a lad of 17 when I heard Red Skelton’s
explanation of the Pledge of Allegiance and still
believe it among the best ever told.

We will not apologize for flying the flag nor will
we cease saying God Bless America. If that bothers
you, deal with it. We have our rights too.

Some may remember John Wayne had a variety show
that was always red white and blue. And he wasn’t
afraid to say ‘God Bless America’ either.

And finally, we can never can forget that freedom
isn’t free. There are a lot of things going on that
we don’t agree with like our wide open borders and
the way veterans and others are being treated. Or
the attempt by our government to micro-manage our
lives and money.

We still tear up at Veteran’s Day parades and will
not forget those who gave the ultimate sacrifice to
keep us free. We believe President Reagan said it
best.

Some may argue that these are all old examples and
if so we can answer with a smile if it ain’t broke,
don’t fix it. The truth doesn’t need updating.
Comments are always welcome.


What’s that smell?

August 2, 2014

50

Ethanol mandates have been in and out of the news
lately and E-85 is in some of our gas stations. We
have heard the bull they’re shipping from our
nation’s capital, but of course we remember that
they are politicians and can’t balance a checkbook
nor should they be allowed to carry matches.

But those of us who work for a living know that this
renewable fuel isn’t as good a deal for us as it
is for politicians in corn producing states.
Estimates have been as high as 40% of our corn crop
goes into ethanol production.

Why not mandate finding other sources to make the
fuel and a way to make it using a lot less water.
The excuses are getting old. We know ethanol can
be made with everything from algae to hemp to
switch grass.

Ethanol cost more to produce, lowers gas mileage,
corrodes older engines and parts, and pollutes as
much or more as regular gas.

It’s time we put somebody with common sense, or at
least somebody who wears big boy pants, in our
government so the hard choices can be made. We have
to stop the nonsense.
Comments are always welcome.


Fair warning

August 1, 2014

exp

Now that the House of Representatives have voted
on an immigration bill that Obama said he will veto
they will empty out of Washington to hit the
campaign trail.

Here in Iowa we have already seen the smear
campaigns gearing up and we’re sure it would be
about the same all over. Since some can’t run on
their records they have to make their opponents
look like a worse choice.

What we find hard to believe, with as long as our
country has had this political process, is the fact
that some people actually trust the politicians to
do what they promise during the campaign.

And one party isn’t much better than the other. We
would agree there are some standouts, but not
enough to change the process back to what it once
was.

We don’t pretend to know how things will turn out
and wonder about others who say they do. After all,
Obama got in twice. People sure bought the bull he
was shipping.

One thing we do know is that those in office will
hit the trail with self-preservation in mind and
not what may be best for our country. Have the
robocalls started yet at your house?

Since those in office haven’t done anything to fix
any of the problems our country has please keep an
open mind and remember your priorities then vote
accordingly.
comments are always welcome.


The good old days

July 31, 2014

A friend sent an email that gave me another ‘duh’
moment. I had been working on a post about how our
country had changed and hit a snag. This video
fixed that problem.

Bingo! We didn’t have cellphones, color TV, FM
radio, or a lot of other things but we were so
busy being busy we didn’t notice.

Families ate together, went to church together,
and actually talked to each other. We wrote letters
that went to post office, could do math in our
heads, had respect for others, and were proud to be
Americans.

When we acted up we didn’t get a time out. That
was something that happened in a football game, we
got a belt or switch to our backsides. We just
thought it was the price to pay for doing something
stupid.

People weren’t equal, though we all agreed we were
born that way. Failure was an option and many of us
knew firsthand what it felt like.

We didn’t know anyone who sued someone else. If
we fell down on someone else’s sidewalk we were to
blame for not watching where we were going.

And we’ll say it again, there was no sex or cussing
on TV. There were war shows, cowboy shows, cop
shows and comedies but for some odd reason we all
didn’t turn into gun toting mobsters because of it.

Today I would venture that sounds corny and
perhaps even made up. Or prehistoric. But believe
it or not, there are a lot of us who miss those
days, myself included.
Comments are always welcome.


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