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Thursday, August 09, 2001 ISSUE #192
 

COLUMBUS: Our President sure got the attention of the preachers and politicians tonight. He told them, and us, where he stood on paying for something called "stem cell research".

They all have an opinion on it, even though ten or fifteen years ago, none of 'em had ever heard of it. Now, to listen to 'em, this research is either an opening to the greatest medical discoveries of all time, or it’s an abomination against human life.

CNN immediately followed the speech by interviewing all the learned intellectuals on the subject of stem cell scientific research. They had actors, Baptist preachers, Catholic theologians, Senators, reporters... no scientists. I guess they were all working in their labs tonight, solving the problems of the world rather than jabbering about them.

Mr. Bush said there are already 60 of these stem cell lines, and that ought to be enough to keep the federal-funded scientists occupied for the rest of his term. Maybe, but don’t be surprised if it requires a few thousand more before they find cures for diabetes, paralysis, and all these other pressing needs. Aren’t you glad no one was around to tell Edison he only had 60 tries to develop a light bulb.

The President went to Texas for a vacation, and perhaps it can start tomorrow. (His twins deserve some fatherly attention.)

While some folks question whether a President should stay out of Washington for a month, there are others who say two months would be better. And make it three for Congress. When was the last time those folks made a decision in the middle of summer that turned out right on all counts? No only should they not make any decisions, they shouldn’t even be allowed on the radio in August to talk about the decisions they made last spring. The rest of us need a vacation, too.

The heat has been affecting the country for a week or two. The heat wave finally made it east to New York, so now it’s officially hot. Before, it was just a rumor.

Folks here don’t like hot weather, but England would like us to send some over there. They don’t see ninety degrees but seldom, so it’s a delightful novelty to 'em, kinda like a good cup of coffee.

Historic quotes from Will Rogers:

"Have you been reading about the disgraceful way the Senate has been carrying on lately? You know our old Forefathers that laid out the time that our Congress was to meet knew something. They always held Congress in cool weather. They knew a Senator couldn't stand up under the heat and his position, too. When hot weather hits him not only his body but his brain perspires and the discharge from both is equally useless." DT #899, June 13, 1929.

"All the papers out here (California) are headlining how many heat prostrations there are in the East. No use publishing it, for it's so hot out here that nobody is able to read it. It's not the heat I mind, it's the perspiration." DT #906 , June 21, 1929.

"Outside of the heat, there just is not a bit of news in the papers. Government affairs never was at such a stagnant state. Mr. Hoover disappears every week-end." DT #907, June 23, 1929

"I'm (going) off the air during the heat spell.... A man that talks on the radio to an audience in warm weather kind of affects his mind and the audience's, too. Heat and reason don't go together, anyhow, you know." Radio, June 9, 1935


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