|Saturday, June 08, 2002||ISSUE #232|
COLUMBUS: After giving us eleven days of rain, the Lord finally saw fit to tempt us with a little sunshine yesterday. The only three dry locations in Columbus were on the Nina, Pinta and Santa Maria. Corn farmers are undecided whether their planter needs wider tires, Caterpillar tracks, or pontoons. The Pilgrims reported that Indians put a fish beside every corn plant. Well, we got whole fields of fish, but no corn planted.
I know it don't seem fair to all these other regions doing without rain. Iowa got eight inches one day, and Montana ain't had that much in a year. Why, it's got so bad along the Rio Grande, Texas is trying to buy water from Mexico.
The Masai Tribe in Africa gave 14 old milk cows to our ambassador, in remembrance of the World Trade Center victims. It was a wonderful gesture and sacrifice of the highest order. He accepted the cows even though he didn't even own a milk bucket. Just like any dairy farmer today, his first thought was to sell them. Then he would put the money into a fund for the victims.
But some television reporters got wind of the plan and said the cows should be trucked to America, where they could be put on display in various zoos and circuses. Then some other reporter said, no, they can't be penned up, they need room to roam. So they compromised on a plan to send seven to New York to be turned loose in Central Park, and the other seven to Rock Creek Park in Washington. How many of these reporters do you think will show up twice a day to lasso and milk 'em?
We got ranchers in the West where it is so dry they would give 14 Thousand cows to our government, as long as they get fed and returned in good shape. These are beef cows, and most come with a calf that handles the milking chores. All they really need is a park where the grass needs mowed. The park can even keep the fertilizer.
The President announced plans for a new cabinet agency, the Department of Homeland Security. The idea is to bring under one person every government employee needed to keep us safe at home. Congress seems to like the idea of it being under one Secretary, but they can't agree on which 78 Congressional committees should be responsible for keeping an eye on him. It won't be as tough to get the FBI, Coast Guard and Immigration to compromise and cooperate as it will the various sub-committee chairmen.
Did you hear about the woman with the U.S. Department of Agriculture in Florida, Johnelle Bryant? She turned down those terrorists when they asked for a loan. Mohamed Atta wanted $650,000 to buy a plane for crop dusting and charter service, in the spring of 2000. Three others came in later to ask her for money.
Now, all across this country we had people that seemed to give those men anything they wanted... visas, flying lessons, airline tickets to fly anywhere..., and this one woman with the Farm Services Agency is the only one who said, "No".
Just a few days ago I talked to a bunch of those USDA-FSA folks, from all over the country, and if I had only realized their wisdom and good judgement at the time, I would have just asked questions and let them provide the lecture.
When Mr. Bush is organizing that new department I think two people he should put in charge, along with Secretary Ridge, is Mrs. Bryant, and that FBI lawyer in Minneapolis, Coleen Rowley.
A friend told me recently not to worry about any wars in India, Pakistan or most anywhere else in the world for the next three weeks. The soldiers are all watching the World Cup, no matter who is playing. Any war begun this month will be started by diplomats. Or Americans.
Another old murder has been solved with the Skakel conviction. Connecticut took only 27 years to find him guilty. Now they can honestly claim to be 12 years ahead of Alabama, but only in that one category.
Historic quote from Will Rogers:
"I got a wire (from) my ranch, or what I thought was a cattle ranch (saying it) was now a fish hatchery." WA #231, May 15, 1927
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