TWAS THE NIGHT BEFORE IMPEACHMENT

Posted: December 21, 2019 in Uncategorized

THIS WILL APPEAR IN THE FARMERVILLE GAZETTE AND THE RUSTON DAILY LEADER THE WEEK OF 12/22/2019

‘Twas the night before impeachment, when all through the house
Not a congressman was stirring, not even a mouse;
The articles were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that McConnell soon would be there;
The Democrats were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of removal danced in their heads;
And Nancy in her ‘kerchief, and Chuck in his cap,
Had just settled down for a long winter’s nap,
When out on the mall there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the TV I flew like a flash,
Turned on the set and listened to the trash.
The image of the moon on the new-fallen snow
Gave the luster of impeachment to objects below,
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny reindeer,
With a little old driver, so lively and plump,
I knew in a moment it must be President Trump.
More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name;
“Now, Abraham, now Richmond, now Higgins now Johnson and who knew!
On, Graves, Scalise, McCarty and VanDrew too
To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!
It’s time to adjourn; Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!”
As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,
So up to the house-top the coursers they flew,
With the sleigh full of surprises, and President Trump too.

And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof                                                                             The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
As I drew in my hand, and was turning around,
Down the stairs came President Trump with a bound.
He was dressed to the fours, from his head to his boot,
And his wife was with him, so elegant and cute;
A bundle of agreements he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a President just opening his pack.
His eyes — how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And the hair of his head was turning white as the snow;
The stump of a pen he held tight in his hand,
And the power it emitted was anything but bland
He had a broad face and a little round belly,
That shook, when he laughed like a bowlful of jelly.
He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself;
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,
Soon gave me to know the Dems had everything to dread;
He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And filled all the stockings; then turned with a jerk,
His team was in place in order to teach
It takes true crimes for Congress to Impeach.

And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, up the stairs he rose;
He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight,
MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL, AND TO ALL A GOOD-NIGHT,  WITH A SPECIAL MESSAGE TO ALL REPUBLICANS AND DEMOCRATS, LETS END THIS DESTRUCTIVE FIGHT!

Merry Christmas everyone and may the true meaning of Christmas exude its’ love and peace on all of us.

For only the third time in the history of the United States of America, a president has been impeached by the House of Representatives of the United States. In a televised ceremony the Speaker of the House announced that they would send the two articles of impeachment to the United Senate. At this time the President will be put on trial for the two crimes identified by the House.
This is a very sad time for the United States and deserves the somber respect of the Legislative Branch of the Federal Government and the Executive Branch of our Federal Government. An impeachment trial is so important to the government of the United States that all work of the Senate is suspended, no one is allowed to leave the proceedings and complete and total attention is to be given to the proceedings. Several Democratic presidential candidates will not be in Iowa campaigning for votes in the all-important first state of the election year.
Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, told the world of the importance of preparing the articles of impeachment and sending them to the Senate. She insisted that the action be expedited before the Christmas adjournment and quickly sent over. This is when things began to go squirrely. The articles of impeachment passed by a majority of congressmen with voting strictly along party lines. These articles that had to be voted on so quickly was then held for over two weeks instead of being expedited to the Senate.
Democratic Representative Rashida Tlaib was anything but dignified as she was captured walking to the House of Representatives for the House proceedings. Smiling and laughing and spouting about how they were coming. She was almost giddy as she prepared to be a part of a most somber occasion.
As the articles were ceremoniously transferred from the House of Representatives to the Senate, the action was very respectful and showed great decorum. The House of Representatives where the transfer began was anything but respectful. Speaker of the House Pelosi tried to be noble but failed. Her voice appeared to be saddened with the proceedings but she quickly destroyed this deep concern as she recited poetry that is taught in elementary school and began to stutter through her message. Then the most despicable action took place. Speaker Pelosi signed the articles of impeachment with numerous pens as if it were a major piece of legislation. She then gave out the pens as souvenirs and took pictures with her cronies; all with big smiles. So much for decorum, respect and a somber occasion.
It is sad that our country’s legislative branch of the greatest country in the world has come to so much venomous hatred that the country’s government stops to carry out a smear campaign that will be for naught. President Trump will not be removed from office and many in the executive branch are being relegated to nothing more than petty childish fighting. This is apparent within the Democratic candidate’s debate for President, was apparent during the inauguration when 25% did not have the respect to attend and is apparent during the State of the Union address when members of the Democratic party boycotted the address.
It’s sad to see a party display itself in such a way. It is not the party of the past. I originally began as a Democrat and I still carry the Democratic card; if I changed my father and grandfather would haunt me for the rest of my life. They were loyal supporters of the party. My father was a four-time elected Democratic State Representative and my grandfather was a State Senator, District Attorney and Chairman of the Louisiana Democratic Central Committee. They never once acted with such petty behavior and as my father once said; he voted his conscience and nothing more. As my grandfather once said, it doesn’t matter if the man is a Democratic or a Republican, what matters is if the man is a good man.
Let us hope and pray that our nation can heal itself and heal itself quickly.

A DISNEY MOVIE SCRIPT

Posted: January 16, 2020 in Uncategorized

As we make our way through our journey in life we are optimistic of the future. It doesn’t matter about the situation, we look to optimism to lead us forward. Many times we never fully realize the total benefits that we expected and some times our optimistic view is a total failure and we are completely disappointed in our anticipations. Then every once in a while, perhaps once in a lifetime, all the planets align and the clouds part and a lightning bolt from the hammer of Thor crashes to earth and an expectation is eclipsed by the magnitude of the final outcome. For the citizens of Louisiana that have embraced its’ beloved LSU Tiger football team, Thor visited last week and culminated nothing less than a magical season that surpassed anything that anyone anticipated. It was one of those enchanted moments that is perfect for a Disney movie, much as we have seen with feel-good films such as “Rudy”, “Miracle on Ice”, “Knute Rockne All American” and countless other shows that reinforces our belief in mankind and the future. Had the LSU saga been written and produced outside the reality that just took place, no one would have believed it.
It took various dysfunctional pieces that many had given up on. The pieces were put together and ultimately amalgamated into a rock solid unit with a single focused mission. A head coach that had worked himself into a position with a big time university was terminated for altercations with the law. After our coach was allowed back into coaching, our head coach was terminated following a dismal winning performance at Ole Miss. He continued to grow, moved to other programs, was overlooked as the head coach at Southern Cal but he never gave up believing in himself. Finally, he arrived at LSU and following a temperate start that saw many screaming for his removal, Ed Orgeron was selected as the Coach of the Year for the NCAA in 2019.
A 30 year old coach is not rare, but a 30 year old coach that appears on a major program’s stage and overnight turns an entire offensive system into the talk of the nation is quite rare. This hiring action will probably lead to a change in college offenses across the nation. So effective was this young coach that he was awarded as the best Assistant Coach of the Year for the NCAA in 2019.
There was more to it than the coaching staff that made 2019 a magical year. A young man dreamed of playing college football. After his junior year when quarterbacks around his state were receiving big time offers, he was only offered one from Ohio University where his father coached. After his senior year when he was selected all-state in both football and basketball and was selected as Mr. Ohio Football, he entered Ohio State University where his future was bright. The brightness faded as he realized after two years that he would not be a starter for his university. He didn’t resign himself to sit on the bench and after year three he transferred to LSU. After three years of not playing, Coach O let the young quarterback take over the reigns of the LSU offense. Joe Burrow entered LSU with a chip on his shoulder as he was focused on proving to the country that he was worthy to become a starter. Then after his first year at our LSU, a sporting magazine ranked him as the 6th best quarterback in the Southeast Conference. That chip got even bigger as he prepared for the 2019 season. I love to see critics proven wrong and Joe Burrow did that as he shredded major LSU, SEC and National quarterback records enroute to a 15-0 college record a national championship and winning the Heisman Trophy as the best play in the nation. The vote was the largest vote for a winner in the history of the award and Burrow’s acceptance speech was probably the most emotional in the Heisman history.
The story was not without tragedy. Steve Ensminger, had returned home to become the offensive coordinator for the school he quarterbacked for in the 1980s. Not only was he an LSU grad but he was raised in Baton Rouge. His son and his young wife, Carley McCord, lived in the area where Carley was a well known and respected sports commentator. While preparing for the SEC Championship game to begin, Coach Orgeron sat down with Ensminger to inform him that his daughter-in-law had been killed in a plane crash while traveling to Atlanta for the game. Ensminger remained with the team and coordinated the offense without informing any of the players until the game was over. Joe Burrow learned of the death during an interview on the field following the game.
Surely, Hollywood must allready be working on a script that will chronicle this magical season. All the planets aligned, the clouds parted and Thor sent his lightning bolt to earth.
One caution. This does not happen every year and LSU will be back in the pack just like the other 180+ football teams looking for a victory in 2020. Joe Brady went directly to the Carolina Panthers as it’s offensive coordinator and Joe Barrow will probably be leading the Cincinnati Bengals in the NFL. As for Coach O; he had one of the most successful recruiting classes in the nation.

Last week was quit interesting from an international perspective. I had planned to comment on the downing of a Ukrainian civilian airline that was shot down by an Iranian anti-aircraft battery in the midst of the chaos of battle. This happened during the retaliation by Iran for the killing of General Soleimani of Iran by American special forces and one very lethal drone. This extermination took place in retaliation to the death of an American contractor and the storming of the American Embassy in Baghdad in addition to future attacks on American interests.
Instead of writing about one of these specific subjects, there is an even more dramatic story that is unfolding that could become an even more sensational event that could lead to a spectacular outcome. This event is an end-result of all the activities referenced above.
Students in Tehran are protesting the shooting down of the Ukrainian aircraft the night of the Iranian missile attack on American/Iraqi bases in Iraq. It has also been reported that the protests have expanded to other cities in Iran. While the protesters are flooding the streets the scene is the same as witnessed before in Iran but the message is different. We are use to hearing chants of “death to America”. That is not the message echoing from the Iranian capital. Instead we hear “death to the dictator” and “the stupid leader is an idiot”. What a beautiful message from the Iranian populace that has been brainwashed so long by its’ tyrannical leadership.
Protests have been ongoing in Iran for a while with some of these being protest against the current government. The protests against the diabolic Iranian regime took a lethal direction last November. John Locke, a religious writer in the 1600’s whose writings influenced many of the authors of the American Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, talked about the state of nature and how a society will eventually return from chaos to peace. The Iranian protests in November was an attempt in Iran to return to internal and international peace. Unfortunately, this dissent often comes with a price. As thousands filled the streets of Teran, snipers took their places on roof tops, took aim and opened fire on unarmed Iranians. Helicopter gun ships appeared and opened fire. Machine guns were set up and fired indiscriminately into the crowd of protesters. When the smoke had cleared 1,500 Iranian protesters laid dead in the streets.
Trucks arrived and the bodies were loaded and removed. Families of the dead were visited by Iranian security and told not to talk to the press and not to hold any funerals. If the family ignored the warning there would be dire consequences. This is not a place for a freedom loving individual.
Several years ago I wrote about a revolution that had started in a mid-East country. I had said that by just giving American verbal support for the rebels the corrupt administration may depart and the dictatorial regime would be replaced. The Mid-East was in the middle of the “Arab Spring” and governments were falling apart. America did not respond and instead of the death toll being in the low hundreds it rose to over a hundred thousand and created a migrant issue in Europe the world had never seen. The Syrian dictatorial family is still in power and the door was open for Russia to enter and ISIS to develop and flourish. But, Iran is different.
Instead of a lazier fare approach to the Iranian protest uprising, the current Executive Branch of the American government has spoken up. President Donald Trump has sent a message to Iran that the Iranian military should not fire on citizens of Iran. This is a start and it will be interesting how this unfolds. Iran is rocked by the acknowledgement that a Republican Guard air defense unit shot down an innocent aircraft and killed 176 individuals. The time is ripe for internal descent and a change in Iran’s terroristic support.

Every person has a story. These stories combine, amalgamate and form the history of a community, a society, a country and ultimately a planet. The vast majority of the individual stories die with the person only to be, in part, resurrected and relived at family reunions or friends functions eventually to quietly disappear in the sands of time. With this departure part of the history of the community is lost.
Many communities are home to museums of various sizes with differing missions. Some may display the art of the area or the artifacts of the communities’ historical past or the areas’ natural history or many other subjects that preserve the culture of the society. Museums preserve the population’s past and thus become the windows to the soul of a community.
Museums have been with us for quite a while. One of the first museums dates back to 530 BCE. (2,500 years before present) Located in Babylonia, it housed artifacts from ancient Mesopotamia. Access to the early museums was reserved to the elite of society. One way for a male to raise himself in society was to become a collector and thus provide private showings. Collectors would then place their collections in public museums to display what they owned.
Many of the earliest public museums were located in Italy during the Renaissance; however, the majority of the great public museums were founded as late as the 18th century during the Age of Enlightenment. The oldest public museum is the Capitoline Museums which was founded in Rome in 1471. Pope Sixtus IV donated a large group of sculptures to the citizens of Rome and displayed in the new museum. America had its’ first public museum open in Philadelphia in 1743 and is named the American Philosophical Society Museum.
A person does not need to visit a large metro-museum to get a feeling of the population that the museum represents. The Smithsonian is magnificent and I live for the day that I get to walk through the halls of that museum. When in the navy I had a senior chief petty officer tell me not to limit a visit to one day, plan to spend many days exploring that facility. I recall standing in front of Rembrandts “Night Watch” at the Reick’s Museum in Amsterdam and thinking what a magnificent work of art. As wonderful as these large museums are, the thousands of small museums around the country provide an opportunity to witness society at the local level. It was not until I visited the exhibit at the Union Museum of History and Art in Farmerville and witnessed the art of Don Cincone that my appreciation of art reached a new level. Our local museums are magical and we are blessed to have so many in North Louisiana. Union Parish has these institutions scattered in Farmerville, Bernice, Spearsville and even tiny Haile. These small volunteer-operated museums provide a window into the soul of the community’s society.
It’s rare to find a small museum grow and expand. Once founded, the museum’s size usually remains static. The Union Museum of History and Art in Farmerville is not typical. In March they will be moving to a new facility on main street. This facility will triple the size of the facility and provide several new opportunities for the citizens of Union Parish and North Louisiana. A wonderful legacy for a small community.

AMERICA’S NEW CHALLENGE

Posted: January 5, 2020 in Uncategorized

Last week the United States of America killed General Qassem Soleimani. General Soleimani was the commander of the Quds, a special operations unit of Iran’s elite revolutionary guard. Soleimani also served in a capacity that is similar to America’s Mike Pompeo, our Secretary of State. It has also been asserted that Soleimani was the second most powerful man in the Iranian government and a man that was never an elected politician. General Soleimani was a man of high stature in a sovereign country twelve thousand miles from American shores. Last week the United States of America killed General Qassem Soleimani of Iran.
Last week the Unites States of America killed General Qassem Soleimani, a terrorist that was dedicated to the eradication of Israel and bringing as much destruction and disruption to the United States and its’ allies as is possible. Soleimani has been labeled as a terrorist and his actions for the last thirty years point to this declaration as being the correct assertion. He has been responsible for countless American lives being lost and disruption to American families within our own country while at the same time destroying the lives and life styles of millions around the Mid-East. The question needs to be asked, “If Soleimani is a terrorist and if Soleimani is a key leader of the country of Iran, is the government of Iran a rogue terrorist regime?”
Soleimani was extremely smart, calculating and a masterful leader. He was also diabolical, embraced the Iranian hatred for America and wanted nothing more than for Iran to expand its’ power to mirror a world it controlled twenty-five hundred years ago when Persia was a name to make freedom-loving countries shiver throughout the free world.
His military organization, the Quds, was responsible for killing over six hundred American troops in Iraq. While Iran was not involved in the war to eliminate Saddam Hussein, they have waited their turn for their para-military teams to set up rival militias to battle American troops and civilians and interfere in the government of Iraq. This is the same philosophy used in Syria to counter the civil war that threatened to overthrow the despot Assad family and the same philosophy used to support terrorist groups in Lebanon and other terrorist groups in the Mid-East.
ISIS has finally been defeated on the battlefield but not without hundreds of thousand of lives being lost, millions of displaced Syrians, and a refugee crisis in Europe that will become worse. The disruption of Syria coupled with failed American foreign policy in the Mid-East allowed Iran to enter Syria. This support for Assad ultimately led to an alliance between Iran, by way of Soleimani, Syria and Russia. Soleimani had been known to travel to Russia to meet Putin and thus broker activities in the Mid-East.
Soleimani was in essence building a confederation that gained its’ power from financial and political support from Iran. In 1983, 288 American Marines were killed in a blast in Lebanon. Many have placed Hezbollah and Iran as the focal group that carried out this raid. Soleimani has been a key supporter, provider of logistical aid and trainer for Hezbollah. Several months after I left Saudi Arabi Hezbollah detonated a bomb in downtown Al-Khobar, Saudi Arabia that killed 19 air force personnel. A court in 2006 found Iran guilty of supporting this Al Khobar tower bombing.
Two days after the United States exterminated Soleimani, Al Shabab launched a terrorist attack in Kenya, This is what we can expect as retaliation for the killing of Soleimani. Even though Al Shabab supports ISIS and ISIS is not a friend of Iran, the hatred for America transcends all else. Its’ amazing that the country that has done so much for the world without demanding cultural change has become the target for so many. I think that when a government fails its’ citizenry the government has to look for a
scape goat to blame the failure on; something to rally around. Unfortunately, America is the best target to use as an excuse for failure.
The most important thing that we as a country must do is to be unified as one nation. Politics needs to take a back seat to patriotism. The one thing that must be understood is that Iran over ran the United States Embassy in Iran forty years ago. Iranians came over the wall onto sovereign American territory and held everyone hostage for over a year. The American embassy in Baghdad was attacked last week and Soleimani was in Bagdad. He was not on vacation and was openly, brazenly and arrogantly traveling around Iraq. After decades of attacking American interests, killing Americans and coordinating terrorist acts, it was time to eliminate the nerve center. This was done on January 3rd.
God Bless America. We are going to need all the help we can get.

On January 3rd, 2020 the world was winding down from its’ celebration of ushering in a new decade. 2020 had arrived. That evening the world was rocked with the information that Qasem Soleimani had ben killed by an American air to ground missile at the Bagdad airport while preparing to leave Iraq for Iran.
In 1978 I arrived at my new home in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. Eighteen months later the loyal ally of America, the Shah of Iran, was deposed and a fundamentalist Moslem government replaced a western loving country. Overnight the United States came from being a great trading partner and friend to becoming the “great satan”. Overnight Iran came from being the largest purchaser of American military hardware, equaling all other combined arms sales in the world, to becoming completely ostracized from foreign sales. The outcome of this governmental change was brutal and anything from being a benevolent religious takeover. I had oil field workboats that would occasionally find decapitated Iranian bodies floating in Saudi waters. Many of the shah’s generals were executed. At this time the Iranian Republican Guard was formed. It was at this time that Soleimani joined the guard and survived the brutal Iran-Iraq war that cost over one million lives. The Republican Guard was a loyal force that was a part of the Iranian military and could be compared to the Immortals of ancient Persia.
Soleimani eventually became head of the Quds force, a special operations arm of the Republican Guard. The Quds unit is a special operations unit that was intended to destabilize foreign governments and actively supports subversive groups such as Lebanese Hezbollah, Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, Yemeni Houthis, and Shia militias in Iraq, Syria, and Afghanistan. The primary task of Quds is to liberate Muslim lands, especially Palestine and by doing so destroy Israel. The name Quds means Jerusalem. Anything anti-Israeli, anti-American is an acceptable operation for Quds.
In Syria, Iranian support for the despicable Assad regime is well known. It would be the Quds and Soleimani that squashed the revolt for freedom. It was this revolt that brought Russia back to the Mid-East and it is known that Soleimani traveled to Russia to meat the president, Vladimir Putin. It is now speculated that the Quds has assumed more power than the political power in Iran and at the time of Soleimani’s death, he was considered to be the second most powerful man in Iran.
When America was actively in the Iraqi war to dislodge Saddam Hussein, it was Soleimani and his unit that brought death and suffering to thousands of American troops. My own son missed a fiery death and only a mechanical failure and three minutes saved him and his comrades from an IED explosion timed to take out his fuel truck convoy. I was amazed at the logistics and control it took to time such a coordinated ambush.
Many are saying that the killing of Soleimani was not justified due to his high status within the Iranian government. Quds has been declared a terrorist organization. This group was operating in Iraq and was behind the attack on the American embassy in Baghdad. Reminiscent of the Embassy takeover in Tehran, Iran, we were close to seeing a similar situation in Iraq. We stood by and saw what could easily have developed into a Benghazi where our government stood back and let an American diplomat and several contractors become victims of American non-reaction. Fortunately, neither scenario was repeated. As the protesters left the area after scrawling Soleimani’s name on the wall of the American Embassy, American Marines arrived. The siege was over and now the 82nd Airborne Unit will provide greater protection for Americans and freedom loving Iraqis.
It was the Soleimani led Quds that coordinated the attack on oil tankers in the Arabian Gulf and attacking the huge oil facility in Abqaiq, Saudi Arabia. Quds is also providing support for the anti-Saudi Arabian forces in Yeman.
If a major leader of a country and the leader’s organization is declared to be a terrorist organization, then the countries government is a terrorist organization. This removes any validation that the killing of Soleimani is un-just. What is surprising is how many Americans are cowering before the threat of Iranian retaliation. I will admit that I was immediately concerned when I heard of the killing but I also resolved myself that Soleimani had to go and his level in Iran’s government does not justify his behavior. Many say a lesser person should have been eliminated. You don’t stop a snake by cutting off the tail, you must cut off the head. We got the right person.
Now we ask ourselves what will happen; how will Iran respond. There are two scenarios. Some think that Iran is reeling from this action and are in shock that America had stood up and flexed it muscles in such a powerful way. In this scenario, Iran will think twice about any retaliation as they have witnessed a different America. The other picture is far less desirable. I refer to this as the hornet scenario. A person finds a hornet nest on the ground. The person decides to teach the hornets a lesson so they will stop any threat of stinging. The person hauls off and kicks the hornet nest.
Whatever happens, the dye has been cast. To paraphrase Sam Houston, “Do what is right and accept the consequences”. God Bless America.

THIS WILL APPEAR IN THE FARMERVILLE GAZETTE AND THE RUSTON DAILY LEADER THE WEEK OF 12/29/2019.
America is in an economic position that the world has seldom seen. Help-wanted signs are posted on local buildings as America is sitting on a 3.5% unemployment rate. This is a rate that has not been seen since 1969 and represents a much better employment market than has averaged at 5.74% between 1948 and 2019. Though it is doubtful that we will ever reach the 2.5% record low set in 1953 it is also hopeful that we will not see a 10.80% that we witnessed in 1982. It took the auto industry crawling out of its’ economic quagmire and the collapse of the oil and gas industry to see America regain economic strength. The election of Ronald Reagan providing a shot of consumer confidence that also had a positive effect on our economy.
Many look at the American Stock Market and think that this is the American economy. In fact the American economy is multifaceted and extremely, extremely complex. Built on blood, sweat and tears of the common man and woman in America that buys and builds and fueled by innovation allowed by a free market, America’s economy is an amazing reality to a great economic experiment launched over two-hundred years ago. The stock market is not the end-all of our massive economy. It is an indicator, a barometer, of how well we are doing; and with the stock market indices sitting on record high levels, we are doing quite well. The stock market is also considered to be a leading indicator and forecasts where the economy will be as much as six months into the future.
With all the right things happening in our economy and with a forecast of future growth sitting in front of us, there is a new challenge to America. This challenge is rebuilding America’s crumbling infrastructure.
While traveling around our country there was one common theme that I heard about Louisiana. This complaint was the eroding Louisiana highways and how the roads were beating up vehicles entering our state. I had to agree as even the Interstates were in need of repair. Then last year as Louisiana seemed to make a turn and roads were improved I noticed that other parts of the country were beginning to come apart. Driving through Memphis, parts of the Interstates were noticeably in need of repair. Then highways in the far West were noticed to be in need of maintenance. The rest of the nation was unfortunately catching up with Louisiana. We now have a dilemma on our hands and it will prove to be a major political issue in 2020 plus become an action item action to be addressed by Congress next year.
The dilemma facing congress will be how to fund such a large project. Doing nothing is not acceptable. It is not an option for the most productive and economic viable country in the world to allow further degradation of it infrastructure. Does congress raise taxes and thwart the monster economic recovery we are now facing. If this does happen then we will begin to see diminishing tax revenue as the American economic locomotive begins to slow down. Or do we transfer funds from existing programs, especially numerous entitlement programs, and then use those funds to begin the infrastructure projects. There would be some pain but there is probably a lot of pork available on the bone to strip for the project. Or America could always increase the budget deficit and rebuild our roads and bridges; however, I don’t think we want to continue to spend what we don’t have and pass the bill on to our children and their children.

Its’ Congress’s time to decide and act. For me I would like to see entitlement programs reviewed and cut off the low hanging fruit that plagues give-away programs. Transfer that money to infrastructure projects. At the same time we keep the economy growing at a red-hot level and designate the additional revenues coming from additional taxes, not higher tax rates but more taxes from increased sales, and use that to also fund the projects.
Whatever happens we are going to have a very interesting 2020. Happy New Year everyone.