Following the death of former Republican Senator, majority leader, and 1996 presidential candidate, Bob Dole (98), this past Sunday morning Amelia Island resident Mike Creed told me a story of how Senator Dole changed his life
“I remember the call like it was yesterday,” recalls Mike. “It was December 18, 1973, our phone rang at 7 am, and my Mom picked it up.” ‘Hello?’ Why yes sir! He’s right here!’”
“She called to me in the next room ‘Mike! Phone for you’”
“I walked in the room, Mom was holding the phone out, grinning and whispered: ‘It’s Senator Dole’”
“’Here!’ She said, ‘He asked for you!”’
“I stammered out a halting ‘Hello?’ My heart was hammering.”
“Mike? This is Bob Dole.”
“Senator Dole?” I asked, my 17-year-old voice cracking.”
“He chuckled, said ‘Yes, that’s what they tell me…’ “and then he said these words: ‘I’m honored to be the first to tell you that you’ve earned my appointment to the United States Military Academy at West Point.’”
“I think I screamed. I know he laughed.”
“This just months after my high school guidance counselor told me to forget my dream of earning an appointment, that it wouldn’t happen for me. I had been crushed and told my Dad about it. In his typical way, my dad asked me what I planned to do about it, and when I told him I guessed I’d have to earn my appointment without that counselor’s help, he grinned, slapped me on the back and said, ‘Go prove that bastard wrong!’”
“And then, Bob Dole put faith in me, too, and told me so. And I told the Senator: “Thank you, sir! I won’t let you down.”
And he didn’t.
“He and I were both Infantrymen,” says Mike of the late senator. “I’m sorry to hear he’s gone but am pleased he left a great full life of service as his legacy. Bob Dole, thanks a million for that boost up the hill.”
Following graduation from the Military Academy June 6, 1978, Mike served as an airborne infantry officer, six years in the Regular Army, another seven in the Army Reserve. He had a long career after with International Paper and the paper/printing industry as a Plant Manager, Manufacturing Director, and Business Unit VP, before consulting as a plant startup and turnaround specialist. He throttled back when he and his family moved to Amelia Island about seven years ago and now dabbles as a chief engineer for a few island hotels.
Senator Dole was one of the ever-dwindling number of survivors of what has been called, with good reason, “the greatest generation.” It is estimated that there are only about 300,000 World War II U.S. military survivors remaining. An 18-year-old sailor at Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, would be 98 today.
Dole was an important political figure for decades, serving as U.S. Senator from Kansas from 1969 to 1995, 10 of those years as the Republican leader, both of the minority and majority persuasions. His Senate service followed eight years in the U.S. House representing a Kansas district. He later served as Republican National Chairman under Richard Nixon from 1971 to 1973 and was Gerald Ford’s pick for VP on the unsuccessful Republican ticket that lost to Jimmy Carter in 1976. He was the Republican nominee for president in 1996, losing to incumbent Bill Clinton.
Mike, thank you for sharing.
(Editor’s Note: Amelia Island resident, Ed Thompson, submitted this exceptionally timely and well written commentary.)
“Gaslighting” is a term that originated in the 1938 British play “Gas Light” and was reinforced in subsequent movies in which a woman’s husband pushes her to the edge of sanity by insisting that their gas lights are not dimming when in fact they are.
Ever since the word “Gaslighting” has been used to label any attempt to convince people that things they see and know are not really happening when they are taking place.
For example, America’s school systems have been gaslighting parents, telling them that education curricula are not being used to indoctrinate their children in radical woke agenda priorities. This includes incorporating elements of the debunked 1619 Project and Critical Race Theory.
The 1619 Project seeks to reframe the founding of the country as having been based on slavery, and the establishment of enduring racism in the United States. Critical Race Theory casts people into a strict hierarchy of oppressor and oppressed groups of people based solely on their race. It paints all members of the White race is irredeemably racist, and all members of the Black race as permanently handicapped and unable to succeed due to systemic racism. The prescribed resolution to the tension between oppressor and oppressed is discrimination against the oppressor.
These two interrelated programs found their support in elite leftwing university academia and have worked their way to America’s public and many private school systems. They are poisonous and far more dangerous than the COVID epidemic as they are infecting our children.
The creeping poison of these philosophies and programs have been quietly spreading for years. If there’s one positive outcome of the remote learning environments forced upon students and their parents during these past two academic years, it’s that the parents were able to witness first-hand the content of the “education” to which their children were being exposed.
Even in deep blue areas like Loudon County Virginia, parents were outraged. The outrage wasn’t limited to just Loudon County. Parents nationwide began to show up at their local School Board meetings to express their opposition to programs of which they were unaware, and certainly did not support. The response? Parents were told to sit down and shut up. The “experts” knew what was best for their children, and parents had no say in the matter.
Given the election results for the Governor of Virginia, we all know how well that response was accepted by the voters.
That doesn’t mean that the efforts to indoctrinate students in radical ideologies will end. Instead, those pushing woke agendas are gaslighting parents, telling them that what they see is not really happening. A claim that Critical Race Theory is being taught in schools? Administrators and School Boards have replied that, No – Critical Race Theory is not being taught in schools. That response is disingenuous at best, and an outright lie at worst. Supporters of Critical Race Theory will seek to justify their assertion by claiming that: “Critical race theory is a framework of analysis and an academic movement of civil-rights scholars and activists who seek to examine the intersection of race and law in the United States and to challenge mainstream American liberal approaches to racial justice.”
Nonsense. Students are not taught a “framework” any more than they are taught an academic rubric lesson plan.
It’s the content presented within the framework or lesson plan that students are taught, and that content is increasingly meant to push radical left-wing positions: Police target minorities and indiscriminately kill them; there are no illegal aliens, only undocumented migrants who are entitled to all of the same rights and privileges as U.S. citizens (and maybe more); all White people are White Supremacists; all Black and Indigenous People of Color (BIPOC – not my term, and no understanding why just two minority groups warrant direct reference) cannot succeed in the United States because of systemic racism; Republicans are domestic terrorists; Capitalism is unfair and should be replaced by Socialism; individualism and equality under the law must be replaced by equity wherein everyone has the same outcome regardless of capability or effort; the “rich” don’t pay their fair share and only achieved their wealth by exploiting the “common man”; gender, and increasingly biological sex, are social constructs that can be changed at a whim; the unborn person is simply a collection of cells that can be aborted at any time up to and even after birth. That’s just a start.
These concepts are poison, and those pushing these positions to our children, without the knowledge or consent of parents, are guilty of evil. That statement among others here will probably be seen as controversial by some. That goes to another problem being pushed in education – the denial of absolutes and truth. Listen closely and you’ll increasingly hear talk of “my truth” and “your truth.” What happened to THE truth? It turns out that truth is problematic, and so it has been turned from objective to subjective. – that way, you’re never wrong.
It’s no wonder that the Progressive wish list for Democrat Build Back Better spending orgy extends the reach of government run education to “free” Pre-K and Community College programs. The current indoctrination programs have been seen as so successful that the goal is to broaden the reach across the entire developmental spectrum from three to 20 years old.
It’s relatively late in the game, but parents, grandparents, and voters in general are becoming increasingly aware of these efforts to infect our children with poisonous ideas being spread by the far-left progressives.
What can you do? Get involved. Carefully check the content being presented to your children. Browse through textbooks being used in your schools.
Don’t assume that these concepts are limited to certain subjects. They’re found in some of the most unlikely places. Talk to other parents and educate them if they’re not aware of the problems at hand. Attend School Board Meetings and speak up. Find candidates to replace bad actors on school boards, and perhaps consider running yourself.
(Ed Thompson earned his Bachelor’s degree in Management Information Systems at Florida International University in Miami while also competing in men’s basketball. A true student/athlete, he completed his degree Magna Cum Laude. He completed his MBA at the University of North Carolina Greensboro while working in Information Technology at Sara Lee/Hanes Brands. He moved into Supply Chain Management Consulting with Price Waterhouse. Combining his IT and business experience, he helped lead the growth of i2 Technologies to become the leading Supply Chain software company in the early 2000s. In 2008, he founded his own consulting organization. In 2011 joined Logility as the Sr. Vice President of Global Services in 2011 Ed retired in 2020 and he and his wife Yohanna now split their time between homes in Fernandina Beach, Florida and Mijas, Spain.)
Speaking Of Deceit & Lies: West Coast pundit Burt Prelutsky tells us that in California the Teachers Association is pushing kids as young as seven and eight to question their sexual identities and is doing it during lunch periods because, apparently, it provides a technical loophole, and they don’t require parents’ permission to pursue their creepy agenda.
Nailing It: Mr. Prelutsky also got it right when he wrote recently: “It seems almost inevitable that we would make a deity out of a garden gnome named Anthony Fauci and a U.S. president out of an imbecile named Joseph Biden.”
Sunshine, Solace & Sanity: There’s a lot more to Florida than just sunshine and orange juice. According to one of the state’s data analysts, Florida has:
- the lowest COVID infection estimate in the last week (per Nowcasting)
- the lowest case rate over the last week (per CDC)
- the second-lowest positivity rate
- the second-lowest hospital census per-capita (per HHS)
- the lowest ICU census per capita
- the lowest seen-day hospital deaths per capita.
Beautiful beaches, no state income tax, plenty of jobs, great weather, a hospitable business environment, reasonable environmental laws, tough-on-crime policies, anti-rioting and no sanctuary city laws, home to Super Bowl, World Series and Stanley Cups champions, and the above Covid statistics make Florida a paradise compared to the horrors of blue state hell holes like California, Minnesota, Oregon, New York, etc.
In addition Florida leads the U.S. with the best overall fiscal policy and as the most economically free state, according to a newly published CATO Institute “Freedom in the 50 States” report. According to CATO Florida ranks first in the nation for its fiscal policy due to its low tax burden, low government debt, a higher ratio of private employment to government employment, and fiscal decentralization – meaning how taxation policies are determined at the local level and how local governments are constructed.
Fortunately the crazed leftist wackos that infest the dismal low ranking states are rare hereabouts. The few residing here are easily identified and provide comic relief as evidenced by the two or three spittle-spewing ones that expose their angry socialist ideology in the comment section here weekly.
At a press conference last week Governor Ron DeSantis invited people who are getting “Fauci’d” in other states to come down here. “It’s a free country, so when people are in bad environments – when you have states that don’t know how to fight crime, when you have states that are locking people down, mandating them, doing a lot of stupid things – people look for greener pastures,” he said.
Commenting on why Florida’s tourism industry is booming, he added: “People know, when they come here on vacation, they’re going to be treated with respect. They’re not going to have to show medical papers to get a beer.”
Two Massachusetts refugees currently moving into my neighborhood tell me they abandoned their home state in large part because of the leftist fruitcakes that are running it into the ground.
Welcome to sunshine and sanity folks!
But Wait! There’s More: Attorney General Ashley Moody, Florida’s top prosecutor is suing the Biden administration, saying it has failed to share more about a series of federal flights carrying undocumented immigrants into Florida “under the cloak of darkness.”
The lawsuit is the state’s latest effort to uncover more about the overnight flights. Gov. Ron DeSantis claims at least 70 migrant flights have landed in Jacksonville since the summer. Federal agencies, meanwhile, are mum on issue.
“I have exhausted all non-litigious avenues for obtaining answers, but since the Biden administration refuses to be transparent with the American people, I have no other recourse than to take this matter to court — to get answers that will better help us protect the safety and security of Floridians,” said Attorney General Ashley Moody.
I broke this story nationally with articles here (http://www.davescottblog.com/jax-airport-a-hub-for-illegals-riding-the-biden-express-while-americans-are-running-for-their-lives-in-afghanistan/) and on BizPac Review this past August. (https://www.bizpacreview.com/2021/08/26/while-americans-in-afghanistan-languish-biden-shuttles-migrants-in-us-quietly-across-county-in-luxury-1124843/ )It has now gained the national attention it deserves yet the Biden Administration continues to refuse to acknowledge the flights are even taking place.
Maybe Ms. Moody’s suit will force the administration’s hand and these taxpayer paid flights loaded with illegal, Covid-infected, unvetted aliens will stop.
Oh, did I mention that with the exception of the non-News Leader employee and columnist, Steve Nicklas, nobody else in northeast Florida is covering this story despite the fact that planes continue to dump their illegal alien cargo at the nearby Jacksonville Airport and it has gained national attention. Why not?
So far the murder of a Jacksonville father of four has been attributed to one of these illegal thugs. I’m sure it won’t be the last.
Salvation Army Needs Salvation: According to Democrats and the Salvation Army it’s white people who are the racists. I have heard that the Salvation Army has since reversed itself on that position when their donations started dropping off. But I’m still not dropping anything in their red pots since I now know what they truly believe and I’m not buying their quick convenient conversion. There are plenty of veterans’ groups, pet sanctuaries, Saint Jude, and others that that can use our charity dollars this Christmas season.
Don’t Think Gender Matters? Then go buy a rooster for eggs and a bull for milk and see how well that works out for you.
By any chance, did WONDERFUL Gov. DeSantis give our State Wildland Firefighters, you know, the guys and gals who work for the Florida Forest Service a raise, or a bonus, or is $15-$20/an hour still sufficient? I am thinking that since they work for Agricultural Commissioner Nikki Fried, the only Democrat elected to high office in Florida, and a candidate for Governor, they are S.O.L (ok, Dave no need to censor this, I mean SHORT ON LUCK, not what you assume). I can’t wait to hear from the right wing about any possible disparity between the police and firefighters here. PLEASE BRING IT ON!!!
Here you go. According to one of your “leaders” in the Senate: “This week, as part of the reconciliation bill, I will be offering an amendment to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour. At a time when millions of workers are earning starvation wages, when the minimum wage has not been raised by Congress since 2007 and stands at a pathetic $7.25 an hour, it is time to raise the minimum wage to a living wage.
Senator Socialist Bernie Sanders. A living wage is $15 per hour.
You always get it right Dave
Keep it up and good to know we have one real journalist on our beautiful island!
I also love a good laugh which you provide at a time when we all need one!
Best to you and yours for a Merry Christmas
Thank you for such an entertaining blog each week. I’ve learned to accept, with age, that the rarest thing in your country is common sense. Each week, you provide a little relief from that missing item. As for the night flights into Florida by the Federal government, the Governor might try arresting the pilots for transporting individuals into the state in violation of Federal mandates for COVID. I’ll bet that would get every bodies attention.
Great work Dave. Interesting topics. Seems you silenced the leftwing crybabies with too many intelligent subject matters.
Keep up the great work.
There are so many other things to focus on. Just heard the CA smash and grabbers are very upset with the $950 limitation on their Christmas shopping. Seems many of these folks have shopping lists that exceed the paltry $950. That means they have to make return trips to the stores to avoid unjust incarceration. I heard a couple of them questioning the quality of California governance when several trips, in their view, do nothing more than increase their carbon footprint. Please get your orders in early for my “Save the Planet; Raise the $950 limit” tee shirts in festive holiday colors. Merry Christmas!
Good column again Dave. I assume given the early Friday deadline, you could not mention the appalling inflation rate, year over year, 6.8%. President Brandon has only been in office for about 10 months and the rate of increase in the rate of inflation has been increasing. Month over month the rate was .8% which is about 10% annualized. IOW with Brandon at the controls the nation is headed to becoming the Wiemar republic fiscally. My advice, buy a wheelbarrow so you can have enough money to pay for your next loaf of bread. Or I guess Brandon can order the engraving and printing people begin making $1 million dollar bills.
This cannot continue. If not today, soon the interest rates MUST begin to ratchet up across the board. Anyone who was buying a home around 1980 when the now second worse president, Carter, was around, will recall interest rates beginning at 13% for a mortgage. Housing plummeted. Next up, the dollar being the reserve currency of the world could be replaced. That would be a disaster for our standard of living. Today the white house actually said: because of the high inflation, the Congress must pass the $2T spending bill pronto.
Do they have a clue what causes runaway inflation?? Supply verses demand theory, Wage driven price expansion, Greshams law, and other economic axioms seem to have no applicability to this administration and the nitwits running the legislative branch. What is next? A war over the Ukraine. Hopefully they get removed before we get to that bad idea.
Greetings from La Gomera where Foar From Home will be departing this coming Sunday.
No BS as I don’t speak Spanish except for Dos Cervezas pot favor. If I need more I just say the same thing.
I don’t think they even know what a Kamala is. Although they are expecting a slight Calima in the next few days.
Stay well folks. See you next year.
Great message Dave so glad to see you. are upgrading your blog to include national news and events.The sad part of
this is the subject matter and the rats that
are espousing them.For many years they
have laid low out of fear of exposure and
public scorn.Now un-rat like they are out
in the open and showing no fear of reprisals.The saddest part of all this is our
young and impressionable kids being used
like lab rats in their awful indoctrinations.
The one bright spot in this sad tale is the
innate stupidity in most all of these idiots.
However stupid people are as dangerous
as smart ones at times.2020 mid terms
can’t come too soon hopefully our country
is still standing then.
Dave….Great post as per usual! I have been reading Bert Pretlusky for years and always get a couple great lines worth repeating. He gets it!
Just announced Florida budget for the next fiscal year: 98 billion dollars, with a 17 billion dollar surplus.
The budget includes increased spending for law enforcement, education, and each public school teacher will receive $1000. This budget is less than the new budget for NYC. NYC has 8.5 million people, Florida has 28 million people.
The difference between a Democrat run budget and a Republican managed budget.
Don’t know how or why I got this in my email but I enjoyed it. Please continue sending me this blog. Thanks!
I hereby nominate Ed Thompson for a Pulitzer Prize in reporting.