Wednesday, July 4


I've thought, at odd moments during the last few incredibly busy months, that perhaps I should write finis to this blog. From the beginning it has been my personal outrage at the Bush administration, the neocons, the Republican Party, and the traditional media that has enabled them in their excesses and evasions that has driven me to spend huge chunks of my personal time to express that outrage here at No More Apples. The outrage hasn't waned -- if anything, it's increased. But it takes a lot of energy to be angry, and of late I've had little to spare from work and family.

But I find I'm not of a mind to shut the blog down. It's become my diary, and whether or not my voice is heard by others, it's a record for me personally, and a welcome outlet when my thoughts and feelings about our country's policies and politics overwhelm me.

So this is the Fourth of July. After a pleasant evening last night at a close friend's fireworks-watching party, I'm at home alone thinking deep thoughts and avoiding by any and all means settling down to write the company newsletter, which is due tomorrow. Last night my son showed me the Air Force Memorial web site, where my dad, who died more than a decade ago, is listed as a sponsor of the Memorial. We have no idea who donated the money to honor Daddy.

I visited the Memorial just a month ago when I was at a company meeting in Washington, D.C. My company built the Memorial, and our small group was not surprised when the D.C. division president showed up to escort us around and relate inside stories about its construction and the dedication. Afterwards I wandered around, connecting in my mind and heart to my career Air Force dad, my fighter-pilot brother (he and my sister attended the dedication), and looking among the engraved quotes some reference to Daddy's Air Force heroes.

When you stand at the Memorial, you can look to one side and see the Arlington Memorial Cemetery, which is quite close by. That's where Daddy told me repeatedly that he wanted to be buried. But I don't think he would have minded Mama's needing his resting place to be closer to her.

When you turn to your right and look down, you see the construction site for the Pentagon 9/11 Memorial, which my company is also building. By now you get the picture of a person absorbing the atmosphere. Surrounded by reminders of those who have sacrified and died for our nation, you have to wonder, What is the substance of that nation? I feel fortunate to have a solid basis for my patriotism -- our founding documents (e.g., the Constitution, Declaration of Independence) are a model for representative government, establishing a values system and governing principles that are a reflection of the best that man (distinct from God) can offer.

As someone who was of age during the Watergate investigation, I find myself just now in a sort of Twilight Zone. Observing the abominable actions of the afore-mentioned Beltway insiders, and considering the latest outrage, the pResident's commutation of Scooter Libby's sentence, I find myself almost speechless. "Excessive" sentence? The Nixon President's Men who served jail sentences for exactly the offense of which Libby was convicted, might have something to say about that. Their offense was covering up a burglary for the purpose of political intelligence. Libby was convicted of lying in an investigation into the outing of a covert CIA agent whose area of authority and expertise was WMD proliferation. How, I ask myself, can the national security and law and order crowd -- the movement conservatives and their ilk -- justify anyone connected to the exposure of such a person? How is it that the media, and thus the people, have not cried out about how serious this politically-motivated campaign to destroy the cover of such a key national security operative really was?

But enough of this stream-of-consciousness diatribe. I'm compelled, again, to turn my efforts and attention to the job that keeps me financially viable. Just as a parting thought, I'm immediately reminded by the Holy Spirit that the job isn't my source. The Lord God -- El Shaddai -- is.

So you thought liberal Democrats couldn't also, and more importantly, be devout Christians?