Stanstamper’s Blog

December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas!

Filed under: 1 — stanstamper @ 4:12 pm
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In the year of our Lord, two-thousand and nine, we, who are temporary stewards of the earth, have a lot on our plates.
As is always the case, we first pause to bid goodbye to family and friends whose worldly hours have elapsed. In so doing, we cannot do justice to the contributions they made during their labors, but we can endeavor, as did they, to leave the world better than we found it.
Without question, our work is cut out for us.
No matter how frustrating or challenging the work before us often looms, we should never allow ourselves to fail to recognize how blessed as a nation we truly are.
Most, if not all of these blessings, have been paid for by plain hard work and sacrifice by our forebears. To the extent that our freedoms and our blessings may have become constrained, we can only blame ourselves.
The work of maintaining Liberty and Freedom is never done. Similarly let us not forget from whence we came.
For millions of Americans Christmas is a time to recognize a living God who gave his only begotten Son to the end that all who believed in Him would enjoy everlasting life.
We hope this Christmas finds you and your family in good health, good spirits and thankful that more than 2,000 years ago, a true and living God permanently entered our lives.
To the individuals and families who find themselves in the grips of grief or adversity, we offer our hope and prayers that God will lift you up and comfort you.
Beyond these realities, our spirits are lifted as eager faces and sparkling eyes look upward to those who nurture them and give them comfort—in anticipation of Christmas and the important celebration of the birth of our Lord.
We join in the celebration and extend our own sincere wish to our readers and friends—Merry Christmas!

December 23, 2009

Three Americas

Filed under: 1 — stanstamper @ 8:59 pm
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A few months ago, this column focused on that inescapable fact that America continues to grow more and more divided.
We talked about “two Americas” in which political ideology was becoming more and more pronounced.
But today, we ask if this split is not changing again.
Perhaps there are actually three Americas.
Between the well-entrenched political left and right, we have the tea baggers, and their numbers are said to be growing. They are quick to deny their loyalty to any political party.
The tea baggers are growing more and more frustrated at the two party process. They appear to be more centralistic—some would say fair-minded.
By some counts, the tea baggers outnumber both the left and the right, but political historians say they can’t crack the two-party system and won’t ultimately hang together.
On our opinion page today, these diametrically opposed political philosophies are very obvious right here in Oklahoma.
Democrats appear to back health care “reform at any cost” and Republicans say, “Is it reform, and who gets financially hurt in the process.”
But, that is what a two-party system is all about, and it is this enormous gap in the middle into which the tea baggers are flocking.
Many taxpayers are growing more appalled at the quality of leadership in all facets of government. Meaningful reform plays second fiddle to personal gain and party ideology.
Sure, there are a few exceptions, but they quickly grow weary of constantly fighting the system.
Like many vocations, when an individual comes along with the skills, integrity and desire to be an effective political leader…that individual can simply step into corporate America and be more successful without having to carry all the frustrating baggage that comes with the job.
And some, of course either get “Potomatic Fever” after arriving in Washington, or “Oklahoma River Fever” in our grand state.
It’s some kind of unfortunate virus that converts them from sensible to party hack, and it doesn’t take long.
Having an old geezer standing around one of these political newbees, constantly reminding him or her of their roots and of their once proud values, can delay this process. But unfortunately, few have that old geezer and fewer still would listen to him.
For those who enjoy being an observer of the political process, this is an exciting time. The natives, on both sides of the political spectrum, are restless—ready to go to political war in support of the party’s causes.
As always, to the victor, goes the spoils.

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