cur-mud-geon: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner
I find myself reflecting a bit at this time of year, and I suspect you may be doing so, as well. Following are some random thoughts from 2008:
~~~Our election again demonstrated to the world that democracies are workable; sometimes a bit boisterous and rancorous but certainly workable. Governments can be changed without being overthrown by force.
~~~We have nearly made it through another year without having suffered an attack on our soil; a tribute to the outgoing president when those are seldom heard by him today.
~~~Iraq is moving ahead with its fledgling form of democracy. That is amazing given that generations had grown up without an idea of what that was.
~~~We have economic issues needing resolution, but we're far from the "Great Depression" of which we continually hear. The free marketplace will resolve those issues sooner and with less pain if government permits. The New Deal was not a good deal and should not be repeated.
~~~We need to find the best way to control health care costs. Our system of health care financing, health insurance, is simply a reflection on costs. Insurance premiums follow costs, they do not lead costs. Consumer involvement is among the answers and government needs to permit that to continue to develop.
~~~We must find ways to preclude elections from being influenced by illegal votes; positive identification seems to be a very reasonable answer if we can move beyond demagoguery.
~~~Our education system could be even better than it is today if it were driven from the bottom up instead of from the top down. Simply throwing more money at the system is not likely to cause the changes that may be necessary.
~~~Each of us has an impact on others beyond our knowledge; we need to be ever mindful of that and conduct ourselves accordingly...someone may be watching (or reading) and we'd like for that lesson to have been a good lesson...although even 'bad' lessons can be good reminders of how not to act.
~~~Faith is an important part of our daily life; it is tested often but will survive if we nurture it and permit it to grow and flourish.
~~~We sometimes imagine that we're more important than we are; and we're sometimes disappointed when that lesson comes crashing down on us as a reminder.
~~~We should strive to keep our friendships alive and well and to not lose track of them in the daily hustle and bustle we create for ourselves.
~~~It is better to give than to receive, but receiving isn't too bad either...balance is important in this as in everything.
~~~Maybe we should use the silver and sets of china passed down over the ages more than just once or twice a year; I find that it evokes fond memories of those who passed these on to us; and, I hope the same will be true a generation or two from now.
~~~It has almost always been interesting to me, since my mid-adulthood, at least, how much a thoughtful gift means without regard to its value. Would that we all could learn that much earlier in our lives; but learning it at any time is very important.
~~~I can never forget just how wonderful it is to be able to watch the subsequent generations mature and make their own marks on the world. Just as with snowflakes, each is a different person even given the same parents and heritage.
~~~Our extended family was blessed with news of healing and we are thankful for that gift this year. Thanksgiving should come every day, if but for a moment.
~~~I hope your Christmas season has been as rewarding as ours.