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Eisenhower showed us how to get the job done


Fri, Aug 10th, 2007
Posted in Commentary

As a young boy I remember exploring the tall sand hills about a mile from where I grew up in Austin. At the time I was too little to know what they were to be used for.

A few weeks ago, I drove over that same hilly ground I first visited in the late 1950s; today it is a highway exit off of I-90 leading to shopping malls on the northwest side of town.

I-90 was the result of the National Interstate and Defense Highway Act of 1956. The brainchild of President Franklin Roosevelt in the 1930s, the initiative was fully implemented under President Dwight Eisenhower. The act appropriated $25 billion for the construction of 41,000 miles of interstate highways over a 10 year period. The federal government picked up 90 percent of the costs, with individual states picking up the balance. By the time it was completed in the 1980s, the project exceeded $25 billion several times over. The interstate highway system is the largest public works project in U.S. history.

Eisenhower sold Congress the idea of the interstate highway system based on the country's need for good roads to move military equipment in a time of war; thus the focus on Defense in the title of the act.

The interstate system changed the nation, leading to greater mobility, faster cars and economic change. It even, unintentionally, led to the exit of people from our central cities to the suburbs.

Eisenhower's post-World War II vision was generated in part from his participation in a military convoy travelling across the United States from Washington D.C. to San Francisco in 1919. The trip took nearly two months and brought attention to the plight of our nation's roads.

Eisenhower never forgot that trip. And what he saw in Europe during World War II influenced his thinking even further.

"The old convoy had started me thinking about good, two-lane highways, but Germany had made me see the wisdom of broader ribbons across the land," Eisenhower said.

Eisenhower envisioned a series of interconnecting "ribbons" of highway running north and south and east and west connecting the whole of America. I-35 was part of that system, as was the I-35W bridge, which was built in 1967, that collapsed last week.

The bridge collapse was a tragic wake up call that reminded all of us what we have intuitively known for sometime: that our infrastructure is old and crumbling.

Just drive from Fountain to Chatfield on Hwy 52 and you know the state .....
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Bush the Blacksmith

Fri, Aug 3rd, 2007
Posted in Commentary

As a philosopher, President Bush would make a good blacksmith.

The House and Senate are debating extending one of the most successful healthcare programs, the State Children's Health Insurance Program or SCHIP. Bush says he is opposed to the ..... 
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Bush talks to an Old Testament God

Sat, Jul 28th, 2007
Posted in Commentary

After the 2004 election, I was mystified over the "moral values" thing. The notion that George Bush's lying about WMD and the killing of so many innocent people in Iraq could be parlayed into good election karma never occurred to me.

And th ..... 
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God bless our troops, bring them home

Fri, Jul 20th, 2007
Posted in Commentary

If the politicians who call for war were the soldiers headed for the trenches, there would be no war.

I'm not really sure where or when I read that thought-provoking statement, but I certainly feel it is quite valid. I hope what I have to sa ..... 
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The nuclear "comb over"

Fri, Jul 20th, 2007
Posted in Commentary

We've all seen them. You try not to look, but it's inevitable with the worst ones. You know what I'm talking about, the "comb over". Yes, we all have seen the individual who either combs the hair from one side of his head over his entire head or eve ..... 
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Lying is lying

Fri, Jul 6th, 2007
Posted in Commentary

June 21, 2007, less than two weeks ago, the Supreme Court of the United States upheld the sentencing of Victor Rita. Mr. Rita is a 25 year veteran of the Marine Corps and served in Vietnam and Gulf I. He has received 35 medals during his service. He ..... 
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The rest of the story Rushford Village council speaks out about police service

Fri, Jun 29th, 2007
Posted in Commentary

There has been a lot of commentary in the local press recently concerning police services for the City of Rushford Village and the City of Rushford canceling the "Agreement of Understanding" to provide certain police services to the Village as a bac ..... 
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"The Graduate" revisited

Fri, Jun 22nd, 2007
Posted in Commentary

"Benjamin...I just want to say one word to you...just one word...are you listening......switchgrass. There's a great future in switchgrass...think about it. Will you think about it?" Imagine if Mr. McGuire had uttered "switchgrass" into Benjamin Bra ..... 
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We're all mad here

Fri, Jun 22nd, 2007
Posted in Commentary



Alice: But, I don't want to go among mad people.

Cheshire Cat: Oh, you can't help that. We're all mad here. I'm mad. You're mad.

Alice: How do you know I am mad?

Cheshire Cat: You must be. Or you wouldn't have come here. ..... 
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