Belle of Liberty

Letting Freedom Ring

Friday, December 23, 2011

Christmas List 2011 - A Ladder

Dear Santa, this is the last item on my list of practical gifts for Christmas: I’d like a ladder. A ladder is the one gift that will actually be under my tree this Christmas, thanks to Big Brother.

The ladder is really more for my brothers, so when they need to paint or fix things in my condo unit, they can reach it. A day will come, when I’m going to need it. I’m slightly taller than most gals, but only slightly and if I live to grow to my mother’s current age, I’m sure to shrink. The longer time goes on, the less likely I am to have help doing things, so I’m going to have to do them myself and that means having a ladder.

I’d also like a ladder to remind me to never stop trying, to never give up trying to better than I am. Life should never be so easy that we stop making the attempt to reach for the next height. At work, I never wanted a promotion because it just wasn’t what I wanted to achieve. I saw no challenge in the supervisory and leadership positions; only long hours and longer headaches. God bless those who are willing to lead and supervise.

If I’m going to spend all those long hours, I want to achieve something more than a bigger paycheck and an impressive title. For some people, there’s a title and a paycheck at the top of the ladder. Personally, I’m terrified of heights.

When I get to the top of my ladder, I want to be able to look down and see that America has been fixed. That’s what ladders are for – fixing things. I want to read all the books I’ve collected (if I stacked them all up, one on top of another, I’d need a ladder to reach the top) and find out where we’ve been, how we got to this point, what some authors think the solution is, and even what the bad guys are up to, so we can head ‘em off at the pass.

We need a ladder to scale all the obstacles the Progressives have built in the path to freedom. We need to scale every one of those obstacles – intimidation, apathy, lethargy, propaganda, political correctness, censorship, corruption, and misinformation.

Americans need to be reminded that the successful, the so-called “One Percent” got where they are by climbing the ladder of success. They weren’t helicoptered to the peaks of fame and fortune. Sometimes the climb is strenuous. Most people give up. I guess that’s why only one percent of Americans make it. Not because they’re greedy or selfish, but because they persevered and worked hard.

I’ll be very glad to see that ladder under my tree on Christmas morning, Santa dear. I intend to begin climbing right away – and I won’t give up until I’ve passed that GRE!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Christmas List 2011 - A Dog (or Two)

On a happier note, Santa dear, I’d love a dog – or two – for Christmas.  Of course, we’d have to do something about my association’s two pet rule.  They’d also have to be small dogs because my apartment is small.  I love the cute little dog in the other insurance company’s ad (the one with the umbrella).  Nothing against my own company ; they just don’t have an advertising dog.

Since I won’t be working anytime soon if I go to school for my degree, I’ll have the time for them.  I love dogs, Santa.  All kinds of dogs.  Great big Great Danes that you can saddle.  The mountainous St. Bernard and its cousin, the Berber.  Sleek greyhounds and whippets, so mild and gentle.  The handsome German shepherds and Rottweilers.  My cousins had a female German shepherd.  She was enormous for a shepherd and especially a female.  The floor would shake when she’d trot back and forth in their house in Mt. Vernon.
I love sheepdogs, too, and border collies.  The border collies are incredibly intelligent.  Irish setters and golden retrievers are the beauties of the large dog family, but I adore bulldogs, boxers, and pugs, too.  I interviewed a subject who owns a giant poodle named Jean-Pierre.  He’s a therapy dog.  His owner takes him to visit people in nursing homes and mental health facilities.  He’s a very good dog, Santa.

So is Darcy, the Black Lab who lives next door.  She’s so friendly and so cute, always wanting to play.  She needs a bigger home, though, Santa, with a yard to play in.  By coincidence, I need a neighbor who minds his or her own business.  Look at this way:  the Tattooed Lady loves to garden.  If she rented a house with a yard, Darcy could play and she could garden, and the rest of us could get back to living in harmony again.  Just a thought.

The dogs would make good security guards, too.  The neighborhood is getting gradually more dangerous.  If the world turns over next year, and all the illegal immigrants wind up falling into America, we’re going to need all the protection we can muster.   A couple of little terriers like the ones in the commercial would make enough noise (terriers are noisy and fearless) to scare off burglars yet would be small enough not to initimidate my poor cats (Chopin is a big coward).

The dogs would also give me an excuse to get more exercise.  I need more exercise – fresh air and sunshine – and I want more exercise.  These are the suburbs.  Suburbanites look askance at solitary walkers.   I generally avoid Blockbusters on Saturdays – in fact, I’ve taken to collecting my own DVDs – because in the suburbs, you’re expected to be with someone, especially if you’re a woman.  Very old women can get away with it, but if you’re under 65, you’re expected to be with a boyfriend, husband, and/or kids.  I’m still a decade and a half under 65 and have none of the above.

A dog or two would solve the problem.  One dog would give me credibility.  Two would add merriment to the picture and cast away suspicion.  It would be obvious that I love something and that something loves me back.  Actually, I’d be more assured of that love with a dog than with a significant other.

I can’t understand people sometimes, Santa.  Why do they abuse animals, particularly dogs (they’re cruel to cats, too)?    Over in China, they eat them, although the people there are starving (still, even with the advent of communism), so I can give them a pass.   But to beat and abuse, both physically and verbally, man’s best friend.  They would do anything for us and look what people do to them in return.

God bless the dogs, Santa.  And the cats, too.   I hope one Christmas, I’ll find a dog or two under my tree or at my door (once I can figure out how to get around the two-pet rule).

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The Long Count Has Begun

We have exactly one year – 365 days, 10 hours, and some odd minutes and seconds until the Hercolubus, the inbound Red Planet will turn the Mayan calendar and our world over.  According to Mayan tradition, Dec, 21, 2012, will mark the end of the Long Count calendar, a 5,200 year cycle, divided into 394-year periods known as Baktuns.

The last Long Count began in 3,114, about the time of the end of Atlantis and the Great Flood of the Bible and other cultures.  The tradition holds that there will be numerous catastrophes, including deadly epidemics, earthquakes, tidal waves and other natural calamities.  The Earth will complete turn on over (as in end over end) on its axis.  Bolton Yokte, a Mayan god associated with war and death, will descend from the sky, representing the Hercolubus inbound.

The Mayans, or what’s left of them, claim that it’s not the end of the world but the end of one cycle and the beginning of another.  Author V.M. Rabolu writes in “Hercolubus, or The Red Planet,” that “Human beings will become mentally unbalanced because they will not be able to eat or sleep.  In the face of danger, they will throw themselves over the precipice en masse; completely mad.”

If this is true, there’ll definitely be no more White Christmases.  The northern hemisphere will have the good fortune of an extra growing season, in order to better prepare for the eventual famine.  Humans will better be able to handle the confusion than the animals.

Aviation experts have already noted a slight shift in the Earth’s axis, enough that they’ve had to repaint the lines on airport runways.  New Jersey has experienced numerous flooding, but we assumed that was due to the nearer and less mysterious (though no less calculated) calamity of overdevelopment, particularly in the watershed areas of northern New Jersey.  If you cut down trees and pave everything over, the water is going to run off into the rivers at great pace; you don’t need to consult the Rosicrucians to know that.

Still, it’s a mighty big universe and it’s possible there’s some huge asteroid that comes around cyclically to knock pretty little Earth for a glancing blow, without actually impacting Earth physically.  It would have to be an awfully big planet or asteroid.  Scientists say that our planet has turned on its axis at least a couple of times, all before Man moved into the neighborhood.  So much for man-made climate change.  If Herco is due for another visit, if it has no other salutary effect, it will silence the proponents of man-made climate change forever.  There’s a prediction for you:  Newt Gingrich will not be elected president.

So, will this “revolution” be sudden and (in which case) catastrophic, or gradual, like progressivism, moving us towards catastrophe a few degrees at a time.  If the Earth tilts suddenly, will illegal Mexicans immigrants be instantly dumped over the United States border like change in a dryer, courtesy of Hercolubus and Bolon Yokte?  Or will the change come gradually, with the assistance of a corrupted U.S. Congress, waiting to welcome the tumbling illegals with a shrug of their shoulders?

“Hey, don't blame us!  Blame Bolon Yokte.  It's all his fault!”

We’ll know for certain in 365 days.

Christmas List 2011 - A Gun

Santa, darling, it’s pretty awkward asking for a gun at Christmas.  But there it is:  I would like a gun for Christmas.  “Like” and “want” don’t exactly describe my desire for this dreadful thing.  “Need” comes closer to the mark.

I don’t want the gun for Christmas so much as I want it for the New Year, and the new year after that, and new year after that.  I don’t trust our government and fear the new government they claim is only the fevered imagining of paranoid conspiracy theorists, even as they weave their webs right under noses.  Why it’s already practically verboten to want a gun.  The gun laws in this state are so strict, that a thief could rob your entire house before you even unlocked the gun box.

Do they think we’re blind and deaf, Santa, that we don’t know what it is they’re doing?  Or are they trying to reassure the sheeple in the middle who wish rather than know that the world will remain peaceful, prosperous, and happy?  The communist propaganda machine is too well-entrenched and oily.  Censorious and scolding, the Media gives the people their marching orders and they obey.

“Hate the Tea Party!”  And one of them steals the Tea Party bumper sticker from the back of my car in the Shop Rite parking lot.  If they’ll steal a bumper sticker, simply because they disapprove of it, what won’t they do in the name of their own cause?

I was fishing for money for the Salvation Army bucket at Wal-Mart.  I happened to mention to the bell-ringer how my job is going away but that at least I have my blog.  “You tell them!” he cried.  “You tell the whole world what ‘they’ have done!”  By the end of his harangue, he was pacing up and down, scowling, as his bell clanged.  Having located my meager quarter, I dropped it in the bucket and hastened away before I told him that I’m a member of the Tea Party and the only “they” I blame are those in Big Government. 

I harbor no ill-will, or not very much ill-will, towards my company.  Sometimes a bitter mood will come over me and I’ll forget myself.  But then I remember that this downsizing will result in my being able to return to school for a master’s degree, which is a very happy thought, indeed.

The communist way is a miserable way of life.  Our media cheerleads for them.  Controlling the Media is one of the ten planks of Communism.  You should hear how the news reporters, anchors, and commentators venerate this Kim Jong-il.  He starved, persecuted, and even executed his own people.  The ends justifies the means, according to them.

The communists are a brutal bunch.  They’ll stop at nothing to steal from honest working people and redistribute our freedom.  They hate freedom.  The very word burns their tongues.  They have to redefine the word in order for it to even pass their lips.

If they win the day, or the New Year, millions of illegal immigrants will flood our borders.  We’ll be voted or simply evicted right out of our homes and jobs.  I fear we’ll be no better off than the citizens of North Korea, and no one will know about but you and Jesus.

Criminals will be set free to loot, plunder, and rape.  Women in America already know they’re not safe.  No woman in her right mind goes to Willowbrook Mall at night.  At the very least, they’ll take her car and her purse.

We try to avoid danger and heed the guidance of our guardian angels.  Once we’re overwhelmed, the angels won’t be able to be everywhere the criminals are.  We have to be able to defend ourselves, especially those of us without men of our own.

The trouble with a gun is, I’ll probably shoot myself in the foot with it.  I can’t imagine shooting anyone or anything.  I don’t think I could shoot the broad side of a barn, so a rifle would be out.  I can’t imagine shooting Bambi or Thumper at this point, though that’s because I’m not starving – yet.  This is the misery which gapes before us, more of a man-made disaster than any fantastical climate change.  This is a well dug with the iron-fist of communism, encouraged by envy, and sponsored by political power and corruption.

God help me, I don’t want a gun, but I know I’m going to need one all the same in these times to come.  I just pray that I’ll never need to use it.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

The "Dear Leader" Is Dead: Long Live "The Brilliant Comrade"

The news of North Korean “Supreme Leader” Kim Jong-il resulted in the most bizarre performances since the hoodlums occupied Wall Street.  Hundreds, maybe thousands, of North Koreans were televised weeping, wailing, and keening in the public square, presumably in Pyong-yang. What a performance!  Either these people really are under the spell of a personality cult, or there are a lot of unemployed actors and actors in North Korea.

How else to account for the grief-stricken crowds mourning a man who was responsible for 3 million deaths?  Only a fanatic or a starving actor (with a gun at his head) could put on such an act for such a monster.  That death count almost puts him up in the Big Leagues with Mao, Stalin, and Hitler.  But that North Korea is such a tiny country, he, too, might have been responsible for 23 million deaths.

According to Wikipedia, Kim Jong-il (born Yuri Irsenovich Kim on  February 16, 1941/42) was the supreme leader of North Korea.  He was also the General Secretary of the Workers’ Party of Korea,  the ruling party since 1948, Chairman of the Nationa Defence Commission of North Korea, and the supreme commander of the Korean People’s Army, the fourth-largest standing army in the world.

In April 2009, North Korea's constitution was amended to refer to him implicitly as the “supreme leader.”   He was also referred to as the “Dear Leader,”  “Our Father,”  “The General” and “Generalissimo.”  His son King Jong-un was promoted to a senior position in the ruling Workers' Party and has succeeded his father.   In 2010, he was ranked 31st in Forbes Magazine’s List of The World’s Most Powerful People.  The North Korean government announced his death on 19 December 2011.

Details surrounding Kim Jong-il's birth vary according to source.  Soviet records show that he was born in the village of Vyatskoye, near Khaboarvosk, in 1941, where his father, Kim Il-Sung, commanded the 1st Battalion of the Soviet 88th Brigade, made up of Chinese and Korean exiles. Kim Jong-il's mother, Kim Jong-suk, was Kim Il-sung's first wife.
Kim Jong-il's official biography states that he was born in a secret military camp on Baekdu Mountain in In Japanese Korea on February 16, 1942.   Official biographers claim that his birth at Baekdu Mountain was foretold by a swallow, and heralded by the appearance of a double rainbow over the mountain and a new star in the heavens.
 In 1945, Kim was three or four years old (depending on his birth year) when World War II ended and Korea regained independence from Japan. His father returned to Pyongyang that September, and in late November Kim returned to Korea via a Soviet ship, landing at Songbong. The family moved into a former Japanese officer's mansion in Pyongyang, with a garden and pool. Kim Jong-il's brother, “Shura” Kim (the first Kim Pyong-il, but known by his Russian nickname), drowned there in 1948. Unconfirmed reports suggest that five-year-old Kim Jong-il might have caused the accident.   In 1949, his mother died in childbirth. Unconfirmed reports suggest that his mother might have been shot and left to bleed to death.

Throughout his schooling, which was said to have taken place in China for his safety, Kim was involved in politics. He was active in the Children's Union and the Democratic Youth League (DYL), taking part in study groups of Marxist political theory and other literature.  In September 1957, he became vice-chairman of his middle school's DYL branch.   He pursued a programme of anti-factionalism and attempted to encourage greater ideological education among his classmates.
Kim is also said to have received English language education at the University of Malta in the early 1970s, on his infrequent holidays in Malta as guest of Prime Minister Don Mintoff.
The elder Kim had meanwhile remarried and had another son, Kim Pyong-il (named after Kim Jong-il's drowned brother). Since 1988, Kim Pyong-il has served in a series of North Korean embassies in Europe and is the North Korean ambassador to Poland.  Foreign commentators suspect that Kim Pyong-il was sent to these distant posts by his father in order to avoid a power struggle between his two sons.
By the time of the Sixth Party Congress in October 1980, Kim Jong-il's control of the Party operation was complete. He was given senior posts in the Politburo, the Military Commission and the party Secretariat.  When he was made a member of the Seventh Supreme People's Assembly in February 1982, international observers deemed him the heir apparent of North Korea.
At this time Kim assumed the title “Dear Leader.”  The government began building a personality cult around him patterned after that of his father, the “Great Leader.”  Kim Jong-il was regularly hailed by the media as the “fearless leader” and “the great successor to the revolutionary cause.” He emerged as the most powerful figure behind his father in North Korea.
On December 24, 1991, Kim was also named supreme commander of the North Korean armed forces. Since the Army is the real foundation of power in North Korea, this was a vital step. Defense Minister Oh Jin-wu, one of Kim Il-sung's most loyal subordinates, engineered Kim Jong-il's acceptance by the Army as the next leader of North Korea, despite his lack of military service. The only other possible leadership candidate, Prime Minister Kim Il (no relation), was removed from his posts in 1976. In 1992, Kim Il-sung publicly stated that his son was in charge of all internal affairs in the Democratic People's Republic.
In 1992, radio broadcasts started referring to him as the “Dear Father,” instead of the “Dear Leader,” suggesting either his own promotion or that of his son. His 50th birthday in February was the occasion for massive celebrations, exceeded only by those for the 80th birthday of Kim Il Sung himself on April 15 that same year.
According to defector Hwang Jang-yop, the North Korean government system became even more centralized and autocratic during the 1980s and 1990s under Kim Jong-il than it had been under his father.  In one example explained by Hwang, although Kim Il-sung required his ministers to be loyal to him, he nonetheless and frequently sought their advice during decision-making. In contrast, Kim Jong-il demanded absolute obedience and agreement from his ministers and party officials with no advice or compromise, and he viewed any slight deviation from his thinking as a sign of disloyalty. According to Hwang, Kim Jong-il personally directed even minor details of state affairs, such as the size of houses for party secretaries and the delivery of gifts to his subordinates.
On July 8, 1994, Kim Jong-il's father, Kim Il-sung died, at the age of 82 from a heart attack. However, it took three years for Kim Jong-il to consolidate his power. He officially took the titles of General Secretary of the Workers’ Party of Korea on October 8, 1997 and Chairman of the National Defence Commission on April 9, 1993. In 1998, his Defense Commission chairmanship was declared to be “the highest post of the state,” so Kim may be regarded as North Korea's head of state from that date. Also in 1998, the Supreme People's Assembly wrote the president’s post out of the constitution in memory of Kim Il-Sung, who was designated the country's “Eternal President.” ". It can be argued, though, that he became the country's leader when he became leader of the Workers' Party; in most Communist countries the party leader is the most powerful person in the country.
Although Kim was not required to stand for popular election to his key offices, he was unanimously elected to the Supreme People's Assembly every five years, representing a military constituency, due to his concurrent capacities as KPA Supreme Commander and Chairman of the DPRK NDC.
The state-controlled North Korean economy struggled throughout the 1990s, primarily due to mismanagement. In addition, North Korea experienced severe floods in the mid-1990s, exacerbated by poor land management. This, compounded with only 18 percent arable land and an inability to import the goods necessary to sustain industry, led to an immense famine that left 3 million dead and left North Korea in economic shambles. Faced with a country in decay, Kim adopted a “Military-First” policy to strengthen the country and reinforce the regime.  Communists like to boast that, on the national scale, this policy has produced a positive growth rate for the country since 1996, and the implementation of “landmark socialist-type market economic practices” in 2002 kept the North afloat despite a continued dependency on foreign aid for food.
In the wake of the devastation of the 1990s, the government began formally approving some activity of small-scale bartering and trade. As observed by Daniel Sneider, associate director for research at the Stanford University Asia-Pacific Research Center, this flirtation with “capitalism” was “fairly limited, but — especially compared to the past — there are now remarkable markets that create the semblance of a free-market system.”  In 2002, Kim Jong-il declared that “money should be capable of measuring the worth of all commodities.”  These gestures toward economic reform mirror similar actions taken by China's Deng Xiaoping in the late 1980s and early 90s.  During a rare visit in 2006, Kim expressed admiration for China's rapid economic progress.
North Korean voting booths often contained portraits of Kim Il-sung and Kim Jong-il under the national flag.  Kim Jong-il was the center of an elaborate personality cult inherited from his father and founder of the DPRK, Kim Il-sung. Defectors have been quoted as saying that North Korean schools deify both father and son.  He was often the center of attention throughout ordinary life in the DPRK. On his 60th birthday (based on his official date of birth), mass celebrations occurred throughout the country Many North Koreans believe that he has the “magical” ability to “control the weather” based on his mood.  In 2010, the North Korean media reported that Kim's distinctive clothing had set “worldwide” fashion trends.

One point of view is that Kim Jong Il's cult of personality was solely out of respect for Kim Il-sung or out of fear of punishment for failure to pay homage.  Media and government sources from outside of North Korea generally support this view, while North Korean government sources say that it was genuine hero worship. The song “No Motherland Without You” ", sung by the KPA State Merited Choir, was created especially for Kim in 1992 and is frequently broadcasted on the radio and from loudspeakers on the streets of Pyongyang.
On June 2, 2009, it was reported that Kim Jong-il's youngest son, Kim Jong-un, was to be North Korea's next leader.  Like his father and grandfather, he has also been given an official sobriquet, The Brilliant Comrade.  Prior to his death, it had been reported that Kim Jong Il was expected to officially designate the son as his successor in 2012.  However, there are reports that if leadership passes to one of the sons, Kim Jong Il's brother-in-law, Chang Sung-taek, could attempt to take power from him.

Kim Jong-il died of a suspected heart attack on Dec. 17, and was succeeded by his youngest son Kim Jong Un, who was hailed by the Korean Central News Agency as the “Great Successor.”

The “Dear Leader” is dead; not so long live “The Great Succesor.”

Monday, December 19, 2011

Christmas List 2011 - A Motorcyle

Santa, darling, sorry for the lapse in my letters.  We had some political problems, especially here in New Jersey, that I needed to tackle so I had to put my Christmas letters to one aside.  There are still some issues I need to address, like Time magazine naming the OWSers persons of the year.  Of course, one year they also named Mussolini Man of the Year.  That just shows you where their judgment is located.  The OWSers don’t belong on the cover of a magazine; their photos should be in Wanted Posters in the Post Office.

Speaking of post offices, the United States Postal Service, which is technically a private organization, is in a good deal of trouble.  They haven’t been able to solve their financial problems, starting with their unions.  That should be particularly alarming to you, Santa.  You have an army of elves to collect children’s letters to you.  Your elves are much more willing to live in colder climates than the average American worker.

If the postal service goes out of business, our only recourse for correspondence will be electronic means.  While it’s convenient, paying bills over the Internet carries inherent dangers involving account numbers and passwords.  Those of us who have messages to deliver, if the government also takes over the Internet, will have to find other means.

My condo unit is too small.  I have no property to keep horses (although one of my co-workers is engaged to a horse owner).  By the way, one of the sadder consequences of the depression we’re in is the slaughter of all the horses owned by former rich people who can no longer afford to feed them.  The government is planning to sell the horsemeat to the poor.  The OWSers take a special delight in seeing some wealthy girl’s Golden Girl sold and chopped up to become some OWSer family’s horseburger.

That being the case, I would love to have a motorcycle for Christmas Santa.  I can winter the bike in Big Brother’s two-car garage (at least until the government lures or forces him out of it).  He has a bike, too.  In fact, he taught me to ride.  I’m a safe rider.  I want the bike for transportation, not sport.  I’m not looking to prove how fast I can ride (unless the Feds are in pursuit).  I’m strictly interested in economic transportation.

There is a class of women’s bikes.  They sit lower and are a lighter than the average bike to accommodate the average woman rider’s lack of upper arm and body strength.  The Harley-Davidson Sportster is the most popular among women riders, but it’s also the bike most likely to be stolen.  Women practically have to chain themselves to the bike to keep thieves from making it off with it.

The Honda Shadow Spirit is a 750-cc low-rider.  The 745cc engine gives it enough power to keep up in traffic without sending me over the curves and gets 56 mpg.  The Spirit is modestly priced at about $8,000.

The Yamaha V-Star comes in prettier colors.  It weighs about 545 pounds.  The Spirit is actually lighter, at 536 pounds.  The price is $6,600 for the 650.  The seat height is 24.9 inches (the seat height of your typical girl’s bicycle).  It’s not as good on the mileage as the Honda Spirit; the V-Star gets 49.9 mpg.  It has a 64-inch wheelbase, an inch shorter than the Spirit. 

So I suppose the Honda wins out in performance; but the V-Star is better looking.  Whichever bike you choose will be okay.  I can see myself riding like Paul Revere through northern New Jersey on either the sleek, black Shadow Spirit or the bright red V-Star, distributing my bloglets and warning the unwary citizens that Big Government is coming.  Big Government is coming!  They’re right down the road!!