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January 14, 2004     Sentinel Tribune
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January 14, 2004

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SENTINEL TRIBUNE Vi ewpolnt Wednesday, January 14, 2004 BETWEEN THE By Tom Merchant Sentinel Tribune LINES Is this an election year or what? I think there will be a major election this year although it would be hard to tell at least from the democratic debates, or insult trading sessions. I think there are nine candidates vying for the democratic presi- dential nomination. Can you name more than three of them? I can, Howard Dean, Dick Gephardt, and John Kerry, oh yeah AI Sharpton. Beyond that I don't have a clue. I really don't understand how Howard Dean got to be the front runner, I mean he is way more liberal than most liberals would admit to. But then money seems to talk more than anything, and if that is true it looks like four more years of George, by golly. I guess the older I get the more cynical I get. I mean it would be nice if the candidates would at least try to discuss the issues. Lord knows there are- plenty of them to address. As a card carrying member of AARP I am more than a little upset of their support of a pre- scription drug bill that they described as a good start. Translation, it's better than nothing. The sad fact is the darn thing doesn't kick in until after the next election, and even the legislators admit they don't even know who the win- ners will be. Except for the major drug companies who fund both sides of the legisla- tive isle, while they pick the pockets of the general public of the USA. Some reports I have read say that no one knows for sure who the winners and los- ers will be. Well I know who the winners will be, and I think I know who the losers will be. Of course only time will tell. Then there is the budget deficits and national debt. Less than a year ago every person in the united states owed about $18,000 towards the national debt. Today that figure has jumped to about $23,000. Yep folks that is per person, not per family. Whatever happened to those conservative fellows who proposed and legislated to have only balanced budgets? Even liberal Bill Clinton signed on with that one. Apparently that all went out the door with the current administration. Of course in spite of all that is wrong, this country is the greatest country on earth and it will survive 9-11, AI-Qaida and anything that is thrown at us, by the grace of God. Have a great Week LETTER TO THE EDITOR What's in a name? Sir: I've a seatmate on the tour bus to Flandreau's Casino who must think I'm NUTS... She doesn't K-N-O-W how my brain works...When we passed the elec- tric wind towers (she calls them windmills) I'm wondering "What will replace them?" and when I hear "MAD cow disease I'm thinking 'What an awful name to give a disease.' One cannot put a cow into a straight jacket, nor can it set down and tell a psychi- atrist it's past, present or hopes for the future. I still think that someone OUT there will find a cure for cancer, mad cow disease, kidney failure, etc, etc, etc,. And that someday, someone will be driving an auto without a drop of gasoline it in. And, someday, something will replace the microwave oven. No, It's NOT a 'GIFT' nor am I a Tennie Didson. Back in 1918, my now late father (Walter N. 'Moose' Riddell) write a letter to his mother say- ing that 'The next war will be with Tacon'. Maybe I've a few of his genes?! Be that as it may, there's a cartoon in the Worthington Daily Globe of a 'cow' with a ring in it's nose. Any COW worth her salt would be more than insulted, as only BULLS have rings in their noses'.. The artist had to be from a city, not farm raised...So, what's in a name anyway: Mad cow or Mad Bull disease?! Ms. Dorothy M. Riddell Worthington, MN Happy New Year For some. For others this is the most traumatic year they have ever entered. And few inci- dents are as far reaching as acci- dents that took the lives of area youth. With that as a back- ground, I decided to use the quickest media to address some needs in emotional injury. Many people suffer silently for various reasons. The first part of this let- ter is to you. Some of you have one or more empty chairs in your life. Some are experiencing a loss of health. Some are experiencing a financial blow, divorce, abuse, neglect, the list is endless. For some it can be described as sim- ply as "something's wrong," and you can't erase the cloud in your mind. Too often people say, "Oh well, that'sjust the way it is." I am telling you by personal expe- rience that it does not have to stay that way. I suffered silently for about forty years. You should not have to go through untreated pain. And you are not alone! A depression support group exists to heal injuries, and our method of operation includes listening with non-judgemental compas- sion. If you need a lift out of the clouds, we meet the third Sunday of each month from 3 to 5 P.M. at 315 9th St. N in Mt. Lake, MN. Some people choose to call us at 507-427-3160 and receive bits of information to guide them. In the second part of this letter, I say that our world needs healers. Ayoung lad was cleaning fish after an oil spill. He was asked what good his efforts would be when the beach was lit- tered with so many. As he threw one back into the ocean and picked up another he said, ."All the difference in the world to this one. And to this one." Scripture commands us to bear the burdens of others. So often we hear people say that they do not have the words for the hurting. Words are often the poorest form of healing, because we tend to tell others that their period of grieving Flcn000 \\; AI Bart... "Stories from the Bait Cave" Odds and Ends for 2003 Time goes by as though the telephone poles were picket fences. We have turned the corner on yet another year. At the end of the year, I always have a notebook full of items that I found of interest, but could not work them into a column. They are odds and ends. I enjoy these things because I am one of those peo- ple who doesn't get even, I get odder. Here are some of those items. Stine Seed Company of Adel, Iowa, gave Christmas bonuses of $1,000 for each year worked to its 270 employees. San Antonio Shoe, a shoe manufacturer, gave a $1,000 Christmas bonus for each year worked to each of its 900 workers. A nice way to show gratitude for hard work. The column I wrote about drinking salted peanuts in either a bottle of Coca-Cola or Pepsi-Cola brought a lot of response from people who grew up doing the same thing. I did hear from a number of folks who preferred the goobers in a bottle of Dr. Pepper. There are 74 fewer people in North Dakota than there were last year. That is a sad fact. This coon- try needs all of the North Dakotans it can get. Dishes should be stirred from east to west. The city of Seattle has made it legal for Elvis impersonators to be cab drivers. The longer Elvis has been dead, the more Elvis impersonators there are. I predict that by the year 2060, everyone on earth will be an Elvis impersonator. The University of Minnesota covered its outdoor Christmas trees with skunk spray to deter thieves. The city of Colorado Springs sprayed its spruce . trees on city property with fox urine to deter Christmas tree rustlers. Do you think that it is easy being a cheerleader? Emergency rooms treat approximately 21,000 injured cheerleaders annually. Scientists at Texas A & M University have pro- duced what they believe to be the first cloned deer. We can all breathe a sigh,of relief. This should put an end to the dreadful deer shortage that we have all been suffering through. A man in Wisconsin tried to rob a gun shop at knifepoint. An Ontario man, who had demanded to be his own defense attorney in a trial for cocaine possession, appealed his conviction on the grounds that he was not provided with competent legal counsel. Are Minnesotans the only ones who add another syllable to the word "chimney" and pronounce it "chim-a-nee"? The ten questions most asked of 2003 included the following topics: fast food condiment packages, chocolate, obscene gestures, flat-screen monitors, thrown at weddings, soy candles and Yes, that sounds like 2003. The top 1 Searches for 2003 were Kazaa, "American Idol," Britney Spears, 50 World Wrestling Entertainment, Paris NASCAR and ChristinaAguilera. I that I didn't search for one of those. What is up with those crocheted covers? Does Kleenex get chilly? William Shatner, who played in the original "Star Trek" TV is another album. Shatner is generally by the music trade as having sion of a Beatles' song ever. He "Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds" in 1 be a warning. There are more than one million United States. Let this be another I read  news item that said that a matician appears to have solved the Poincare Conjecture, which, of course, the very simply connected closed homeomorphic to the three-sphere (in sense), where a three-sphere is simpl) tion of the usual sphere to one dim We can all breathe a sigh of relief. This make for a wonderful table topic at the Carl Sandberg was a wonderful writer. '3"here is an eagle in me that wants to there is a hippopotamus in me that wants in the mud." Who hasn't felt that way? :., The average person rolls over 12 times ='' her sleep each night. That is probably wW cent of people never make their beds. A lot of people think that their dog's popcorn. A fellow once told me that a lot of dog food contains corn and since sweat from their paws(the cornish smell retained there. I'm going to ask for my ion. The Bermuda Triangle is missing. AI Batt 2004 71622 325 St. Hartland, MN 56042 should be over. Although the hor- rible pain does ease, the trauma remains for years. Scripture also commands us to weep with those who weep. We are equipped with ears to listen, hands to hold, arms to embrace, tears to share, and hearts to say that we care. We are also equipped with an inner voice that says, "I should." Failure to listen to that voice is just that . . . failure. I am a dif- ferent person because I have car- ing people in my life. I can only repay them by passing along the gift that I have received from them. You are equipped to lift someones' heart in 2004. The true blessing of giving comes when you hear a thanks for being there. For a better new year, Gary & Mary Classen Sentinel Tribune Thomas Merchant Roxy Soil Wayne Rue Junette Merchant Nancy Goring Joan Spielman Carolyn Van Loh Ted Herder (ISSN 8750-3905) Managing Editor Ad Layout & Office Manager Advertising Sales Westbrook Office & Production Production Production assignment reporter Walnut Grove news correspondent Published every Wednesday at Westbrook, Minnesota 56183 Periodicals Postage Paid at Westbrook, Minnesota 56183 SUBSCRIPTION PRICE FOR THE. SENTINEL TRIBUNE WILL BE: In the following counties: Cottonwood, Redwood, Lyon, Murray and Nobles $25.00 Per Year - $17.00 6 Months (includes Peach). Elsewhere in Minnesota $29.00 per year. Out of the State $34.00 per year. Canada and foreign countries inquire at the Sentinel Tribune Office "Snowbirds" may put their paper on hold at no extra charge while they are gone, or pay $6.00 extra to have it mailed out of state. 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