Sunday, August 26, 2012

Fragrances, body odor and aroma therapy

My dog, Charlie (this picture doesn't
do him justice).
I have a dog named Charlie who likes to sniff anything and everything on our daily walks. I like to say that this is Charlie's daily "aroma therapy" session. He's really into smells. In that sense, I think Charlie takes after me because I too am into smells, and I have my own version of aroma therapy. I never leave the house in the morning without my daily shot of deodorant and body spray along with a dash of cologne.

This ought to be a required insprection before you can join
 a gym, board a flight, or be hired for a job. 
Let me tell you one other thing about my sense of smell. I have a serious aversion to body odor, to point of gagging. I remember years ago, I had this stereotype in my head that only guys who were total slobs would be the ones to have BO. I have been in the gym on a treadmill next to a guy who reeked of BO and had to stop what I was doing and move at least 3 treadmills away to escape his foul smell. Do you think he even suspected why I was moving to another treadmill? Not at all. Apparently, people with BO seem to think they smell pretty good and can't imagine anyone not wanting to be close to them, even other people are gagging. I can't imagine how they ever have a relationship or sex with a spouse? Doesn't the spouse smell what I smell? Is she too afraid to tell him. How does she put up with his BO day in and day out?

My image of the stereotypical BO offender was knocked on its head one day when a beautiful young blonde stepped onto the treadmill next to me and at that moment I noticed this foul odor. I looked around to see where it could be coming from because the LAST place I expected BO was on this beautiful girl. But, knock me up the side of my head if she didn't have some of the worst body odor that a human could emit. I thought to myself: Doesn't she bathe? Doesn't she use deodorant and perfume? Why does she smell like this? Does she date? Do these guys smell what I'm smelling? How do they deal with it? Don't they have the guts to tell her? Why don't I have the guts to tell her? I'm chicken and I admit it. I decided that maybe she was trying to do a European thing, but on me it wasn't working.

Along those same lines, I was recently on a flight from Chicago to Baltimore. The plane was packed and my son and I were seated in the last row, which is already a drag because those seats don't recline and you have the passengers in front of you reclining and taking up even more of your limited space. You can barely open up your lap top, but you can't unfold the screen all the way because there's not enough space on your little tray when the seat in front is reclining. Know what I mean? If you're assigned a seat in the last row, forget the laptop. Bring a tablet.

I was in the middle seat, fastening my seat belt and securing my electronics and greeting this nicely dressed business woman seated next to me in the window seat. First think I do is look to make sure that she's not grossly overweight and taking up half of my seat. Fortunately for me she wasn't and everything was going fine until she reached up to turn on the air jet. At that moment, I smelled something horrible, bad enough to make me want to gag. It was BO, and it was coming from her underarms and I sat there wondering how I was going to make it through this flight, which was packed with no empty seats. I tried holding my breath.

Somewhere around Pennsylvania, I no longer noticed my seatmate's BO. Maybe my nose and sense of smell had become numb to it. For whatever reason, I enjoyed the final hour of the flight and was hoping that this woman was NOT on my connecting flight to Albany, NY. Fortunately for me and everyone else, she wasn't.

Shameless promotion and product placement. What a
great product from liberals in Vermont.
Renee and I are always on the lookout for a deal on Yankee Candles. My favorite scents are jasmine, evergreen, pine & honeysuckle. Renee knows that I like to come home from to a house with candles lit and a great fragrance emanating throughout the house.

Now along the lines of fragrance and aromas, I was reading this passage in 2 Corinthians 2:14-16 (GW) 
14 But I thank God, who always leads us in victory because of Christ. Wherever we go, God uses us to make clear what it means to know Christ. It's like a fragrance that fills the air.
15 To God we are the aroma of Christ among those who are saved and among those who are dying.
16 To some people we are a deadly fragrance, while to others we are a life-giving fragrance.Who is qualified to tell about Christ?
The greatest fragrance of all is the fragrance that emanates from someone who knows Jesus Christ. I am always amazed that God can use me to be a sweet-smelling fragrance to some people and to others who chose to reject Jesus, I am the stench of death. But Jesus is the sweetest fragrance of all. My prayer is that his fragrance will emanate from my life more and more.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

The New Normal

Recently, the LA Times ran a story on the resurgence of high gasoline prices at the pump, climbing well above $4.00 a gallon. The Times reports that:
 "Partisan finger-pointing aside, polls suggest that most people aren't as worked up over gas prices as they were four years ago, when a gallon of regular hit a national average of $4.11 a gallon."
In other words, the L.A.Times is saying that Californians are resigned to the "New Normal" where high gasoline prices are no big deal, even if you have to take out a loan to fill up your SUV.

Our President and the media are trying to push this thing called the "New Normal" which is nothing more than fatalism repackaged. During the Carter presidency, we had what was known as the "Misery Index" where Americans were kept informed on a weekly basis as to how miserable their lives were based on high inflation, price controls, and an energy crisis where Carter gave a fireside speech wearing a sweater along with encouraging all Americans to turn down their thermostats and put on a sweater.

Once again, we have a president telling us that we as Americans need to be satisfied with the New Normal.

Here's the New Normal that the Obama administration and the media are trying to get you to accept without any questions whatsoever:
  • High gasoline prices. We are told to get used to paying $3, 4 or 5 dollars a gallon for gas.The idea of paying $2.00 or less for a gallon of gas is a thing of the past. The price of gasoline has doubled under Obama. Obama's Energy chief, Steven Chu said this in 2008:   "Somehow we have to figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe." This administration WANTS high gas prices. President Obama has said this about coal production:  "If someone wants to open a coal power plant then they can. Its just it will BANKRUPT them because they'll be charged a huge sum for all that green house gas being emitted." 
  • Rolling blackouts due to federal regulations prohibiting the construction of refineries, new power plants, coal production and nuclear energy. 
  • The median household income has declined by $4019. in the last four years. In the last 4 yrs., most middle-class families have lost at least $4000. or more in yearly income.
  • High unemployment and declining incomes. Yesterday's headline in USA Today: Middle-class poorer, earned less in 2000s. During the Obama administration,  most households' income has declined by $3500. yearly.Total unemployment is fifteen percent (the U-6 unemployment number). The percentage of people working continues to shrink along with the number of jobs available.  
  • More adult children are moving back home with parents. Three-in-ten parents reports (29%) report that their adult child has moved back in with them. This is the highest number since WWII.
  • Average selling price for homes has declined by 10%.
  • Home foreclosures have increased 34% under Obama.
  • Americans on food stamps have increased 42% under Obama.
  • Americans living in poverty has increased 16% under Obama.
  • The New Normal is a President telling you that "You didn't build that business of yours. You succeeded with the help of others, including your government."
Is This As Good As It Gets?

The "New Normal" is for those who have settled for a 2nd rate nation commandeered by Obama, a nation that is no longer first in the world, a nation that is no longer the world economic leader. We now have the highest corporate tax rate of any western nation in the world which has removed our competitive edge. This drives jobs to other countries as well as foreign investment.
The "New Normal" is learning how to be content with simple prosperity, learning to live in a smaller home with an older car, with less money saved for retirement, less money in savings because more of your money is taxed and taken from you. The "New Normal" is living with second-rate Obamacare where you have to wait 1-3 months to see a doctor.

Some in Southern California may gladly accept high gas prices and rolling blackouts as the "New Normal" but not me. I don't believe we have to settle for the high unemployment rate, or lack of jobs. I believe that with a roaring economy, once again, my home will increase rather than decrease in value.

I'm voting for Romney-Ryan in November so we can replace the New Normal with American Exceptionalism and the entrepreneurial spirit. I'm voting for Romney-Ryan because they believe that our freedom doesn't come from the government but rather by reducing the size of government and its intrusion in our daily lives.

Our country can be great once again and even respected by our enemies, whereas now, we are joke and our enemies are laughing at us behind our backs. They love our weak, impotent President who basically has allowed them to build their nuclear weapons and threaten Israel and the world without any fear of U.S. reprisal.

Our best days are still ahead. With the Romney-Ryan administration, we can return to a full job recovery, a reduction of the national debt and a nation that encourages small businesses and innovation once we've finally gutted the EPA with all of its costly regulations designed to destroy our nation's economy, and making us energy dependent on our enemies. With Romney-Ryan, we will ensure greater security for our nation by producing all of our energy here at home.

How about you? Are you happy with "The New Normal"? 

Sunday, August 19, 2012

The God Who Saturates

One of the titles for Jesus is: "The God who fills all in all" from Ephesians 1:23(NLT)
 23 And the church is his body; it is made full and complete by Christ, who fills all things everywhere with himself."

What this verse says to me is that Jesus is the God who SATURATES every aspect of our lives and every situation.
  • To saturate something is to soak, impregnate, or imbue thoroughly or completely as in saturating a sponge with water.
  • Jesus fills up what is lacking in my life as well as in the church. He fills up what is lacking in my righteousness, my goodness, my spirituality. 
  • He also saturates my life with His presence and His wisdom and His mercy and grace.
  • He makes me complete; apart from Him there is an emptiness and vacuum in my life that can only be filled by Jesus Christ and Him alone. 
  • He covers my weaknesses and my sins with His sacrifice on Calvary, His shed blood for my sins and the sins of the world.
  • He is the God who saturates our solar system, our galaxy and our universe (billions of galaxies). No matter where you go, He is there.                                                                    
     As the Psalmist says in Psalm 139:7-10 (GW)
7 Where can I go {to get away} from your Spirit? Where can I run {to get away} from you?
8 If I go up to heaven, you are there. If I make my bed in hell, you are there.
9 If I climb upward on the rays of the morning sun {or} land on the most distant shore of the sea where the sun sets,
10 even there your hand would guide me and your right hand would hold on to me.   
Whatever I am going through today or this week or this year, He is there to saturate that situation with His presence and comfort and strength. 

So my prayer for today is that I will be filled and saturated with Jesus, kind of like a sponge...and if the pressures and stresses of life begin to squeeze me, like a sponge, I want to ooze Jesus and His grace and mercy into every situation, because He has so saturated my life!!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

'Gangsta' Government: Stringing Up Gibson Guitars

For my final installment on government regulation strangulation, here's what happens when you are not making contributions to Obama's re-election bid, when you're not bundling $500,000 in campaign "donations"  to the Democrat coffers:

Last August 24, without warning,  30 federal agents with guns and bulletproof vests stormed the Gibson guitar factories in Tennessee. They shut down production, sent workers home, seized boxes of raw materials and nearly 100 guitars, and ultimately cost our company $2 million to $3 million worth of products and lost productivity. Why? Because Gibson imported wood from India to make guitars in America.
Can you believe that? This was a SWAT team raid on an American business--this was a police raid with the government agents acting like they were storming the doors of murderers, drug dealers, or dangerous criminals instead of a respected guitar factory in Nashville, Tennessee.
Growing businesses face a number of hurdles in today's economy. For Gibson Guitar—a company that has created more than 580 American jobs in the last two years—the largest hurdle is the federal government.

The Aug. 24 raid was authorized under the Lacey Act. Originally enacted as a means to curb the poaching of endangered species, the law bans wildlife and plants from being imported if, according to the interpretation of federal bureaucrats, the importation violates a law in the country of origin.

The fingerboards of Gibson guitars are made with wood that is imported from India. The wood seized during the Aug. 24 raid, however, was from a Forest Stewardship Council-certified supplier, meaning the wood complies with FSC's rules requiring that it be harvested legally and in compliance with traditional and civil rights, among other protections. Indian authorities have provided sworn statements approving the shipment, and U.S. Customs allowed the shipment to pass through America's border to our factories.

Nonetheless, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service decided to enforce its own interpretation of Indian law, arguing that because the fingerboards weren't finished in India, they were illegal exports. In effect, the agency is arguing that to be in compliance with the law, Gibson must outsource the jobs of finishing craftsmen in Tennessee.
In America alone, there are over 4,000 federal criminal offenses. Under the Lacey Act, for instance, citizens and business owners also need to know—and predict how the U.S. federal government will interpret—the laws of nearly 200 other countries on the globe as well.
Many business owners have inadvertently broken obscure and highly technical foreign laws, landing them in prison for things like importing lobster tails in plastic rather than cardboard packaging (the violation of that Honduran law earned one man an eight-year prison sentence). Cases like this make it clear that the justice system has strayed from its constitutional purpose: stopping the real bad guys from bringing harm.
Here's what Mr. Juszkiewicz is the CEO of Gibson Guitar Corp has to say about the government raid on his factory:
Policy makers must stop criminalizing capitalism. This begins by stopping the practice of creating new criminal offenses, or wielding obscure foreign laws, as a method of regulating businesses.
Especially in a bearish economy, entrepreneurs need to be able to operate without the fear that inadvertently breaking an obscure regulation or unknowingly violating a foreign statute could shut down their company and land them or their employees in jail.
These kinds of actions, enforcing these obscure and often unncessary regulations which stifle American business and sometimes force them to go overseas or go out-of-business, end up costing you the taxpayer over $200 billion dollars annually.

The Lacey Act is the product of environmentalist whackos who care more about endangered species  than about the livelihood of over 500 workers at Gibson's Nashville factory. If these Gibson employees lost their jobs because of burdensome regulation like the Lacey Act, it wouldn't change the thinking of these environmentalist crazies whose one goal is to destroy the U.S. economy and turn America into a 3rd world country because these environmentalists worship creatures like spotted owls, snail, fish, etc. rather than Almighty God who created us in His image. Their skewed view of the world and the order of creation has placed creatures on the top of the food chain and man at the very bottom.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Did you know you know you were disabled? Start collecting your disability check NOW!

News Flash! Government regulations are STRANGLING the U.S. economy. According to the Small Business Administration, total regulatory costs amount to about $1.75 trillion annually, nearly twice as much as all individual income taxes collected last year.
The government admits there are 4200 new rules or revisions already in the pipeline.
Why do we need 4200 new rules? Why?
In their book, “Red Tape Rising: Obama-Era Regulation at the Three Year Mark”, James Gattuso and Diane Katz detail how the Obama Administration has imposed new regulations costing $46 billion annually, with nearly $11 billion more in one-time implementation costs. That is about five times the cost of regulations imposed during the first three years of President George W. Bush’s administration, but the burden is even higher.

In January 2011, President Obama said that “rules have gotten out of balance” and “have a chilling effect on growth and jobs.” And Obama's right. But that's as far as he goes, and where he breaks with reality is his pledge for a get-tough policy on overregulation and a comprehensive review of regulations imposed by Washington.

In fact, as you listen to President Obama tell the story, you would think he’s a champion of slashing red tape and that his Administration has set its sights on slashing over-regulation. Obama's 10,215 regulations enacted in his first three years in office have greatly added to the drag on the U.S. economy as well as loss of jobs. BTW,  I am no friend of the Bush administration and their added regulations. Bush did not reign in the EPA, the Interior Dept, the Army Corps of Engineers, or OSHA.  So in that sense, I consider Bush a failure when it comes to cutting government red tape.
Do you have chronic back pain? File a claim and start
collecting disability. Is this a great country, or what?!

Here's an example of the idiocy of federal regulations. The Americans with Disabilities Act (Thank-you George Bush Sr. for burdening us with this albatross!) in 2008 vastly expanded the definition of disability to include: 
  • people with diabetes (most of western Kentucky)
  • depression (most of the U.S)
  • heart disease
  • difficulty standing, sitting, reaching, lifting, bending, reading, concentrating
This list pretty much includes most of the U.S. Did you know you were disabled? What are you doing at work reading this? Don't you know there is a disability claim that you could be making and you could be sitting at home enjoying those monthly disability checks. 
The new regulations that were enacted in 2008 require contractors with more than 50 employees to document the specific reason why each disabled applicant was not hired. Every contractor is REQUIRED to have a quota of 7% disabled.

The Associated General Contractors of America, a construction industry lobby, has long complaiend that many construction craft positions are inherently unsuited and too perilous for physically disabled applicants. But the government usually scorns common sense.

In 1994, the U.S. govt. penalized and barred Kentucky's Commonwealth Aluminum Corp from federal contracts for REFUSING TO HIRE applicants with SERIOUS BACK INJURIES (in caps, because if I were speaking to you in person, I'd be screaming this out loud so you wouldn't miss the point!). The following year, the U.S. Govt punished Jack Kelley Trucking in Amarillo, Texas for refusing to hire a man who suffered from uncontrollable epileptic seizures to drive a truck full of hazardous waste!

This is our government and its stupid regulations which lack any common sense whatsoever and drive up the cost of doing business $1.75 trillion annually!

Just a reminder that in November, if you vote for Obama, you're voting for more regulations, political-correctness, less common sense, and fewer jobs because of regulation strangulation. If you consider the Internet as a vast frontier of freedom, watch out. Obama wants to regulate the Internet as well. Obama never met a regulation he didn't like.

If you vote for Romney, you are voting for the candidate who has promised to cut regulation on day 1. I believe he will do that, but we need a Republican house and senate made up of radicals like Marco Rubio, Rand Paul and the soon to be elected, Ted Cruz (from Texas) who will help to hold Romney's feet to the fire because I don't think he planning to cut out all the foolishness like what we have here in the ADA, as well as EPA, etc. We have thousands of regulations that need to be SUNSET-ED, and revisited one-by-one to determine if they are truly necessary and what their impact is on the U.S. economy and job creation!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

What Mayor Bloomberg Doesn't Know About Police & Guns

I plan to continue the series on regulation...but I just saw this and wanted to direct your attention to this article in today's Wall Street Journal:

"What Mayor Bloomberg Doesn't Know About Police and Guns"
This article in today's Wall Street Journal is by John Lott whom you may remember from my recent post, "More guns, are you kidding me?" I quoted John Lott and referenced his book, "More guns, less crime." 

In today's WSJ opinion piece, John Lott says that most police chiefs and police officers overwhelmingly support law-abiding citizens having the right to carry weapons. Why? Maybe it's because they know they they can't really protect most citizens; they know they can't be there on-the-spot when most crimes are committed.

John Lott also makes another point that I hear brought up all the time as a "straw man" for not allowing private citizens to carry concealed weapons. There is NO case on record of a permit holder accidentally shooting an innocent bystander. 
Jeanne Assam, the heroine who shot
and killed the New Life Church shooter.

Finally, John Lott also cites the case of the New Life Church shooting in Colorado Springs in December 2007. There were 7,000 people inside when an armed gunman came onto the church property and began shooting, killing two people and wounding others. What stopped this killer was a parishioner who had permission to carry a concealed weapon. What might have happened if one or more moviegoers at the Century theater in Aurora, Colorado had been carrying a concealed weapon? Maybe, just maybe, many more lives might have been spared.

When you read about the lunacy of NYC mayor Michael Bloomberg, you would hope that he would consider the words of our Founding Fathers: 
"[It is] in the law of nature for every man to defend himself, and unlawful for any man to deprive him of those weapons of self-defence [sic]."---Boston Independent Chronicle, 1787. 
"Arms in the hands of citizens [may] be used at individual discretion . . . in private self-defense."----John Adams, in "A Defense of the Constitutions of Government of the United States of America," 1787-88. 
"[T]he right of the citizens to bear arms in defence [sic] of themselves and the State, and to assemble peaceably together . . . shall not be questioned."---Providence Gazette and Country Journal (RI), 1790. 
"Congress shall never disarm any citizen, unless such [they] are or have been in actual rebellion."---from the Constitutional ratification convention of the state of New Hampshire, 1788.