House Healthcare Votes For Sale !


Jim Brown – OneNewsNow – 3/20/2010

Some House Democrats are apparently selling their vote on healthcare reform for jobs at places like NASA — but they’re receiving a stern warning from one conservative senator about the ramifications of such behavior.

Human Events reports that retiring Congressman Bart Gordon (D-Tennessee) has been promised the job of NASA administrator in exchange for his vote — and that Representative John Tanner, another retiring Democrat, has been promised an appointment as a U.S. ambassador to NATO in exchange for his vote.

When at the White House recently, Congresswoman Suzanne Kosmas (D-Florida) also reportedly was seeking a special NASA deal in exchange for a “yes” vote on healthcare.

Election — 2012

It’s not too far away to look at the 2010 Elections and the Presidential election of 2012 – SO, I have a few suggestions that I want to put forth:

(That spells VETO!)

MY LIFE’S PROGRESSION – Part One (click the pix to read more)


(NOTE: Much of what I will be covering in this “Featured” area will be excerpts from my biography that can be found by clicking on the link (banner) in the header of this site.)

Here is where it all started – well, after my first year and a half in Salem/Roanoke, Virginia! We moved to the southwestern part of the Commonwealth of Virginia where my dad found employment near the end of the “Great Depression”. I had two brothers and one beautiful sister.


Big Stone Gap, VA is a small town of around 6,000 residents in the mountainous southwest area of the Commonwealth, near Bristol. It was a great place to grow up; kinda “sleepy”, but with a very low crime rate and everyone knew everyone else! We were pretty much secluded; NOT backward, just sheltered from many of the undesirable traits found elsewhere. It was first a “bedroom community” for the “officials” working for the mines and the railroad.


Although small, we had many people from the area who reached fame and prominence; US Senator, writers and folklorists, even a Governor. Actor George C. Scott was from a community just 20 miles away. Y. A Tittle, NFL football player of the ‘60s, 30 miles. Francis Gary Powers of “U-2 plane crash in Russia” fame was from the area. And I am from there!


Many of my classmates have doctorates; one was a Superintendent of Schools in the Washington, DC, area, and yet another close friend is Professor Emeritus of Law from a University in Richmond, VA, and she  is regularly invited to teach at several universities in Europe, including Ireland and Germany. I barely made it out of high school!


We did have quality education in our (County) school system. Many of our teachers came to us from other states so we did get a flavor about “the outside world”! And, the curricula was well-rounded; no holds barred!


Because of its small size many of the young people are forced to leave the area searching for employment. Less than 20% of the people raised there remained there. But, another 10-15%, after somewhat satisfying careers elsewhere, migrate “back to the Gap” for their retirement years. That substantiates the phrase: “you can take the boy out of the country but you can’t take the country out of the boy”!


I was fortunate to have “found Christ” at a very young age while a member of the Episcopal Church there. That formed the foundation of my “spiritual life” that was to be further enhanced in later years.


Now, move on to Part Two – Germany

MY LIFE’S PROGRESSION – Part Two (click the pix to read more)

After failing to find satisfactory employment at home, I joined the U.S. Army. This provided an avenue for me to “see the world” and have opportunity for the “G I Bill” (education) since my dad couldn’t afford to provide higher education.

Following my training at Fort Benning, GA, “Home of the Rangers”, and at my choice, I went to Germany. This turned out to be one of the “major” (pardon the pun) good choices in my life. As a peacetime Army, our duties were less rigid and I was in the middle of Europe – a mecca for traveling!

I visited (East & West) Berlin two years before the “wall” went up, spent weekends in Austria (a most beautiful place, similar to the  above Alps photo) and Italy, primarily visiting the island city of Venice.

Venice was a most unusual place with no streets or cars, just canals and boat – thousands of boats! At the Doge’s (Duke’s) Palace courtyard, every afternoon at 2:00 sharp (the bell in the clock tower announces their arrival on the last “gong”), pages bring out buckets of corn and other feed and scatter it, and literally tens of thousands of pigeons swoop into the area. There is a mad thrashing as they eat up every grain and then quickly fly away – to come back on the morrow. But, watch where you step!


I spent much time exploring and photographing castles and other historic places. I went to an Army electronics school south of Munich in a little town (Lenggries) that was at the foot of the Alps (which touches 7 countries!) ! Every afternoon after class I went up the ski-lift and was swept away up the side of the +10,000 foot mountain. The scenery was gorgeous, just like that of the opening scenes of the film “The Sound of Music”.

Strangely, ALL the 1000’s of slides I made while in Europe mysteriously disappeared in my move to Florida. I hope they are stored in a box somewhere. And, I left my lederhosen in Bavaria.


I established several life-long friendships while in the Army. At least one of them was “in touch” regularly until he passed away a few years ago. You can read about Wesley in my bio; he was the dulcimer maker.


After the three years in the Army, I was “honorably” discharged with the permanent rank of Private! I went back home. I never did use the “G I Bill”  for education – you’ll understand why in the next section.