Tuesday, November 27, 2012


      Something that gets a lot of lip service and a lot of hand wringing but not much actual action is bullying.  It is not only at the school level but pervades all the way up though our culture to the halls of government.
      With all the attention in the schools that bullying is supposed to be addressed I still find it happening and school officials turning a blind eye to it.  I have a friend whose kids have medical issues and yet even teachers who have been briefed on the conditions fail to do much to address the bullying that they experience.
      The act of bullying takes many forms and some are not really recognized by the participants that it really is bullying.  Seems most churches have those members whose jurisdiction over self perceived power bully other members and are tolerated.
       It has been ingrained into our culture that bullying is acceptable by government agencies, service providers, and outside interest groups.  Most of which have no business forcing their views or authority in the manner they do.
       Americans have long been tolerant of the diversity that makes our country so great.  We have had our difficulties but things have gotten better over the years.  But because of our tolerance it has now become acceptable to bully others to crusade for points of view that are not that of the majority.
      There is an organization in Wisconsin that has made it their business to remove any reference to God or religion in an way that it can.  This group tried to stop a Christmas display from being place on a courthouse lawn a few years ago.  The reaction from the people was "what business is it of a group from Wisconsin what we do?"  The group took them to court and held in the peoples favor and told the group to mind their own business.
      Dateline BUHLER KANSAS.  Since 1988 the city seal of Buhler has had a cross as part of the emblem.  Buhler is a largely Mennonite community.  The emblems relate to the heritage of the town and has gone unchallenged in all these year.  Yet, there is one person in town name unknown right now, that has complained to this Wisconsin group.  So a letter comes to the mayor that they will file suit if the cross is not removed.
      Most people will have the same reaction I have.  Who do these people think they are?  Well after that question the council and mayor sought out legal opinion and said they would not win.  So being good stewards of taxpayer money they are knuckling under to the bullying tactics of this group.  Most are outraged, so am I.
      We have had vocal minorities driving policy and procedure in this country for so long now that that they are drunk with the power they perceive.  So the whole community is putting up with bullying.
      We have a long tradition of standing for what is right.  When you lose the will to stand up and fight we have lost everything this country stands for.  We are not losing this country by a Communist President, (this according to Pravda, the paper in Moscow), but by the local issues that are rotting the core.  We would not have the national problems without the culture rotting from the ground up.
      So we ignore bullying in the schools, in church, in the workplace, in politics, and even in our town halls.  Without the gumption to stand up for what we believe in we are lost.  Everybody ready to line up in the Kool Aid line?  It is time we stand and stop this nonsense.
      BUHLER you have my support and I am sure the whole states support to fight for what is right.

Sunday, November 25, 2012


      I am going to take a moment here to expound on a non political subject.  This is so I can clear my head of the obnoxious messages from people who say that I must stand behind our newly elected president regardless of my values.  So rather than fence with an unarmed opponent I must tell you about BEANS.
      I go to a lot of cover dish suppers and church suppers and many other functions.  There seems to be an almost unconscious tendency, especially for men, to open and dump out cans of pork and beans and do nothing with them.  It is really frustrating when the other dishes have been obviously made with care and handed down tradition.  Then there is the bean right from the can.
      Come on people, beans from the can are a basic ingredient.  Very few people I know relish canned beans straight.  It is not hard to create a great dish with a little effort.  Even the baked beans are not serve worthy without a little care.
       And there is the few who think they are creating a gastronomical delight by adding hamburger to unseasoned beans. UCK!  Really?
     Now am I being a country food snob?  Maybe.  My specialty is beans and I have fixed them for many functions with great success.  Now beans was a stable on the cattle trails and though the chuck wagon cooks of today provide some delectable fare, back in the old days the food was terrible.
      Now I will not give you my recipe but I will give you some guidelines.
There needs to be bacon and onions.  There has to be just a little ketchup but not a bunch.  It takes a little bite and a little sweet.  Now I don't measure like a real foo foo recipe card type plan, I dunk and dab.
       You know there are a lot of great country cooks still around and the worst thing I think you can do to a crowd that is lickin their chops over a great meal is to insult them with plain beans.
      This may cause a stir in a couple of church basements but there are a couple of unnamed congregations that should order out.  Now don't get on me I have had many great meals done by church ladies.  But there are a few.
      So the next time you are going to have a feed of some kind and the urge to dump beans straight from the can hits you, STOP.  I might have to resort to naming names.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012


     Who does not look forward to a vacation?  I just returned from my annual pilgrimage to the Western Music Association Festival, Showcase, and Awards in Albuquerque NM.  This is a time of year that many of us involved in Western Music come together for education, friendship, business, meeting friends (new and old), and jamming. 
     It is always a wonder to me how the music that everyone seems to love can be kept off the radio and the Trashville music business.  We find very few who do not simple love the music when they can hear it.  It is always a positive, family friendly, and sharing experience.  Many of the mega stars in other genre' of music are separated from the fan and try to maintain this bigger than life image.  Western Musicians are like the rest of us.  At our concerts and events you can find yourself visiting or eating with the headliner.  Western music folks are regular people and they enjoy the fan.
      I always drive on a lonely highway because I don't like fighting the traffic on I-40.  So my drive thru the OK panhandle and NE New Mexico affords me the ability to see where I am.  I am amazed that the ditches in the panhandle have names like Creek and River.  Even the trees are dead in them.  One 'creek' west of Guyman had buildings and a quarry right in the creek bed.
      It was especially interesting because of the timing of the Documentary 'The Dust Bowl', driving alone seeing many of the houses and farmsteads that still stand that was from that time.
      Radio choices are really limited and what passes as music is beyond me.  It was nice to actually hear a live DJ actually in the local station.  The FCC has failed to keep the radio business in a true competitive atmosphere.  The emergence of huge monopolies would be taken to court 40 years ago.  When three or four groups own all the stations in a market and independent stations have been virtually beaten out of business it is not good for the consumer.
      I am all for free enterprise but there are limits to keep things accessible.
I don't believe in the music business being controlled by non US companies.
      Anyway I had a wonderful time, come home with a fresh attitude, and ready to get back to it.  By the way, if you just happen to love music and cowboy poetry, 2013 is the 25th year for the WESTERN MUSIC ASSOCIATION and the plans for it have been underway for three months now.  It is going to be something special. 
       I invite you all t check the WMA website and start planning to go to Albuquerque New Mexico the week before Thanksgiving.

Monday, November 12, 2012


      After the elections I want to get back to more positive notes and yet I see things coming that I do not like.  I am taking this time, though, to talk about positive thinking.
      We have a new little store in the town of Sawyer, KS near where I live.  There was a cafe there for years Called the Ranchers Cafe (of course).  The owners wanted to slow down and they had another cafe in another town so they closed down Ranchers and it has been for sale for a couple years now.  I really missed the cafe and a place to drink coffee with the local ranchers, my neighbors, and keep up on things.
      Well a local German Baptist family purchased the building and the process of cleaning and making it suit there needs took a long time.  We all speculated as to what and when they would open.  And when we heard just what it would be there were sceptics.  It is called FAMILY FOOD SHOP.
      We are delighted.  No it is not the cafe anymore and it is open 3 days a week. Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays.  It is a deli (great sandwiches on homemade bread), bakery(it is to die for), bulk foods(you can buy Hudson Cream flour here. there is no better), Grocery(rolls of butter, milk, jams, and jar goods), and homemade products.
      I think we are in at least everyday.  They know us by first name now. It is not what we were expecting.  During the times we live small business is very difficult to start and be successful.  It is so refreshing to see positive attitudes and the willingness to take a chance on a dream.  As long as I am not on my diet they will be successful.
     Greg & Ruby Wolf are the owners and they are assisted by their kids Laurel, Chloe, Savannah, Sophie, and Elliot.  All decked out in matching aprons with their names embroidered.  The kids are bright and friendly and it is refreshing to have young people that know how to actually count change.  The kids are home schooled and are learning more that many kids I am familiar with in schools.
     As I am heading to Albuquerque NM for the Western Music Association showcase and awards show, I will have a new shot of positive emotions that I need real bad right now.
     I was in the Family Food Shop two days after the elections and Greg commented at my muted mood that "the sun came up the next morning didn't it"?  I love positive people!  Hope you stop by sometime (the cinnamon rolls and fresh baked bread are to die for).

Thursday, November 8, 2012



      I have had to think hard how I would address the results of the National Elections.  I always enjoy tweaking the liberal mindset and I am sure there is much rejoicing there now.  Funny though I still don't feel that changing a country that has been the beacon of hope worldwide since 1776 is something to rejoice about.
      Since the Communist Manifesto was published in the 19teens the formula for the downfall of America has always been known.  Prior to World War 2 we were so busy trying to survive a drought, depression, prohibition, and corruption.  We survived a coupe plot against FDR, and the ideas of Euthanasia were spreading from the US to Germany.
       For all the faults of the US there was still the overriding pride in freedom, faith, and being the refuge of the world.  When Senator Joe McCarthy was waving the files of communist names and using the cold war to stay in the spotlight, we somehow became inoculated about those who seek to destroy what we achieved in real life.
       We never had a news media that became an arm of government controlled by one party.  We never had a president with admitted socialists and communists as cabinet members.  Never have we had a position that was so attacked by one side and ignored by another.  Never have we had so little known about a man who held the highest office in the land.  We have never been declared as no longer a Christian nation.  We have never had disagreement that all voters should be legal and our boarders should be secure.  We have never had a federal government that would file suit against a state for insisting on secure borders. 
       We have never had a National Park put off limits to citizens because it is so dangerous and that law enforcement has to travel in groups and armed for battle on sovereign soil.  Never have we had an embassy not be considered American soil as the rest of the world does.  We have never fired a general for wanting to send aid to officials and citizens under fire, and then retire him.
      Never before have we had so many who insist that they be given so much for doing nothing.  We have never had an industry injured and so many jobs lost because a president wanted to discredit business for using private and corporate aircraft in the course of their business.
      Does changing the way that numbers are counted make any fewer people unemployed?  We have soup lines it just is in better facilities now.  Is giving cell phones away really elevating people up or just buying them off?
     Are we having hard times?  We have not seen hard times yet.  A man I once worked for was in the Army in Germany in the 1950's.  An old German told him many times that the US would see the days like Germany after World War One when money was useless.  Go look at the pictures of a wheel barrel of cash needed to buy a loaf of bread.
      No, hard times are ahead.  Every economist, historian, and free thinker can look back to see the pattern that we are doomed to repeat.  An accountant friend told me that within 18 months this country will see things happen that will shake the very foundation of the country.
      I want to be cheery and do believe that adversity makes a better person, nation, of us.  At what time will the folly of the 'me' generation, realize that those who have given everything may have been wasted on those who do not deserve it?  Regardless, the next generations will be paying for it.
      The Chosen people rebelled time after time and went their own way and eventually were sold into slavery or concurred.  Always generations of innocents paid for the sins of the people who lost sight of the promise.
      Enjoy your victory now before the bill comes.  We have sold ourselves to the Pharaoh.  What will it take to return to the Land of the Free and Home of the Brave?