Category Archives: Ramblings





Have you noticed, your Social Security check is now referred to as a “Federal Benefit Payment”?


I’ll be part of the one percent to forward this.

I am forwarding it because it touches a nerve in me, and I hope it will in you.


Please keep passing it on until everyone in our country has read it.


The government is now referring to our Social Security checks as a “Federal Benefit Payment.”

This isn’t a benefit – its earned income!

Not only did we all contribute to Social Security but our employers did too.


It totaled 15% of our income before taxes.  If you averaged $30K per year over your working life, that’s close to $180,000 invested in Social Security.


If you calculate the future value of your monthly investment in social security ($375/month, including both

your and your employer’s contributions) at a meager 1% interest rate compounded monthly, after 40 years of

working you’d have more than $1.3+ million dollars saved! This is your personal investment.


Upon retirement, if you took out only 3% per year, you’d receive $39,318 per year, or $3,277 per month.


That’s almost three times more than today’s average Social Security benefit of $1,230 per month, according to the Social Security Administration (Google it – it’s a fact).


And your retirement fund would last more than 33 years (until you’re 98 if you retire at age 65)! I can only imagine how much better most average-income people could live in retirement if our government had

just invested our money in low-risk interest-earning accounts.


Instead, the folks in Washington pulled off a bigger Ponzi scheme than Bernie Madoff ever did.

They took our money and used it elsewhere. They “forgot” that it was OUR money they were taking.

They didn’t have a referendum to ask us if we wanted to lend the money to them.


And they didn’t pay interest on the debt they assumed.

And recently, they’ve told us that the money won’t support us for very much longer.

But is it our fault they misused our investments?


And now, to add insult to injury, they’re calling it a “benefit,” as if we never worked to earn every penny of it.  Just because they “borrowed” the money, doesn’t mean that our investments were a charity! Let’s take a stand.


We have earned our right to Social Security and Medicare.

Demand that our legislators bring some sense into our government.


Find a way to keep Social Security and Medicare going, for the sake of that 92% of our population who need it.


Then call it what it is:

Our Earned Retirement Income.


99% of people won’t forward this.

Will you?




Catholics and Obama


I cannot understand how those who profess Catholicism can vote for a man who supports abortions, demands abortions, and forces other Catholics to supply abortions.

I cannot understand how those who profess to be pro-Life can support a man who wants to do anything other than preserve life.

I was born Catholic, raised Catholic, educated Catholic…and yet no longer profess Catholicism as my religion.  But I still agree with many of the things I learned—but then again those are the same things that fall under 10 simple Commandments.  Not suggestions.  Not good ideas.  Commands.  And one of those is “do not murder”.

The Bible declares frequently that God knew us before we were born; that God formed us in the womb; that put the muscle and sinew that formed our bones and body.  God does not make mistakes.  You might not agree with his decisions, but He does not make mistakes.

And so I was shocked and appalled that many of my extended family members are voting the Democrat, Barrack Hussein Obama, simply because of their Union’s decision to support him.

I am told I’m racist because I didn’t vote for him, won’t vote him and hope he goes home to Kenya.  I vote issues.  I am against his foreign policy.  I am against his domestic policy.  I am against his Executive orders.  I am against his idea of healthcare.  I am against his ideas of ‘redistribution of wealth’.  I am against him on almost any issue he speaks about.

Personally I think anyone who votes for him solely because he is black (….actually mulatto!) is racist.  Or maybe they are voting for the phones and welfare packages he wants to expand.

And no one seems to understand the freedoms they are going to lose after the election.  He already has instituted laws through Executive Orders to take over every aspect of American lives, from the Internet to electricity, phones, gas, water, housing, and anything else he wants control of.  Americans are being arrested for speaking against him now, imagine what it will be like in a 2nd term.

And I’d bet that I’ll be on a black list somewhere for using my freedom of speech here in this blog.
Do not assume that I am voting for Romney because I agree with all of his ideas.  It is more like he has the best chance of all other parties running for President to beat Obama.  And I think he has a better grasp of how to help America remain free and secure.

And it is because of family members like mine, who claim Catholicism and yet vote against very basic moral issues the Church supports, that made me decide to leave the Catholic Church.  I have a Christian faith, not a religion.  I have my own set of morals.  And I have a God that will judge me on the great Judgement Day.

Until then….I will not vote for Obama.  Nor Biden.


Here is a little video I found that gives 5 more reasons why I won’t……


Privacy? In Today’s World??



Privacy…can we expect it anymore?

We have always heard of privacy and confidentiality between people and lawyers, doctors, priests, and psychologists.   We expect privacy from these people….and I guess I was naive and stupid enough to believe that other officials also had to respect confidentiality and privacy.  But today, I was wrong.  And honestly, I was shocked and surprised.
I was talking to a friend who had had a motor vehicle accident last week and asked how he and his SUV were doing.  He told me the tale of the battle of the car insurances and body shops and who was doing what and when and why.  And then he mentioned that 2 attorneys had called inquiring about his injuries and if he was having any headaches, pains, etc.

My first thought was:  how did they get your name and number.  His answer surprised me: it’s a matter of public record when you are in an accident.

Excuse me here for a second.  I work in a medical office.  If I so much as leave a name, or account number, or a random birth date and someone sees it, I face thousands of dollars in fines AND jail time.

But the police can release accident reports that have the same information: name, birth date, address, phone numbers, what you drive, etc.  So my question is: do they verify that the people asking for the report have a right to that report?  I mean, can I call up and say: hey I want to see Ted Kennedy’s accident report??

All I can think of is with the increase of identity theft these days, can we really expect privacy?  Of all groups, I would expect police to protect my privacy.  Afterall, they will be part of the group to arrest me when I release the wrong thing to the wrong person.

And this falls into my other favorite topic—the government is forcing physicians to get electronic health records (EHR) or electronic medica records (EMR).  This means that not only is your personal information forced to be online, but your medical history is also available online.

If your information is hacked and released, your doctor and his staff would be liable for fines, penalties and an entire host of aggravation.  The government decided that a locked doctor’s office is not as secure as the World Wide Web where anyone with half brain cell could hack into your system and take your identity—even half way around the world.

The government has satellites floating around in space with enough technology to count the hairs on your head or track your pet ant running away from home.  Our cities and towns have cameras on stoplights, street corners, and various other places to watch our every move, legal or not.  All for our so-called security.  (Yet we have no plans to watch the borders for intruders.  And rules and regulations not to detain the ILLEGAL entry into our country).

I am losing all sense of security.  I feel like soon there will be cameras in every home to make sure we aren’t scratching our behinds or picking our noses.  Everyday I’m beginning to feel what those in 1917 Russia when they lost all of their rights.

We are forced to change the way we receive health care (did anyone ask you if you wanted your health record online??).  We are forced how we bank (if you didn’t know, banks have to report many transactions that in my humble opinion should not be anyone’s business).  They even record phone calls and check mail to see who we call, what we say, and who we get mail from.

Yes Big Government joined Big Brother and they are watching.  Now we need to find out who ‘they’ are.  And what do they do with all that information?  Is it secure?

And my biggest fear:  it won’t matter who is in the Oval Office.

Something to think about……..

Obama Must Go…..America please wake up!


I received this email today and it was so well stated that I copied & pasted it.  I did not write it, but I do want to share it.   We are losing our rights…and too few are protesting it.  Between the laws and Executive Orders that Barack Hussein Obama has enacted, we are becoming a socialistic-communistic country.

  …Is it already too late?

Obama’s Second Term Transformation Plans

The 2012 election has often been described as the most pivotal since 1860.This statement is not hyperbole. If Barack Obama is re-elected the United States will never be the same, nor will it be able to re-capture its once lofty status as the most dominant nation in the history of mankind.

The overwhelming majority of Americans do not understand that Obama’s first term was dedicated to putting in place executive power to enable him and the administration to fulfill the campaign promise of “transforming America ” in his second term regardless of which political party controls Congress. That is why his re-election team is virtually ignoring the plight of incumbent or prospective Democratic Party office holders.

The most significant accomplishment of Obama’s first term is to make Congress irrelevant. Under the myopic and blindly loyal leadership of Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi, the Democrats have succeeded in creating an imperial and, in a second term, a potential dictatorial presidency.

During the first two years of the Obama administration when the Democrats overwhelming controlled both Houses of Congress and the media was in an Obama worshiping stupor, a myriad of laws were passed and actions taken which transferred virtually unlimited power to the executive branch.

The birth of multi-thousand page laws was not an aberration. This tactic was adopted so the bureaucracy controlled by Obama appointees would have sole discretion in interpreting vaguely written laws and enforcing thousands of pages of regulations they and not Congress would subsequently write.

For example, in the 2,700 pages of ObamaCare there are more than 2,500 references to the Secretary of Health and Human Services. There are more than 700 instances when he or she is instructed that they “shall” do something and more than 200 times when they “may” take at their sole discretion some form of regulatory action. On 139 occasions, the law mentions that the “Secretary determines.” In essence one person, appointed by and reporting to the president, will be in charge of the health care of 310 million Americans once ObamaCare is fully operational in 2014.

The same is true in the 2,319 pages of the Dodd-Frank Financial Reform Act which confers nearly unlimited power on various agencies to control by fiat the nation’s financial, banking and investment sectors. The bill also creates new agencies, such as the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, not subject to any oversight by Congress. This overall process was repeated numerous times with other legislation all with the intent of granting unfettered power to the executive branch controlled Barack Obama and his radical associates.

Additionally, the Obama administration has, through its unilaterally determined rule making and regulatory powers, created laws out of whole cloth. The Environmental Protection Agency on a near daily basis issues new regulations clearly out of their purview in order to modify and change environmental laws previously passed and to impose a radical green agenda never approved by Congress. The same is true of the Energy and Interior Departments among many others.

None of these extra-constitutional actions have been challenged by Congress. The left in America knows this usurpation of power is nearly impossible to reverse unless stopped in its early stages.

It is clearly the mindset of this administration and its appointees that Congress is merely a nuisance and can be ignored after they were able to take full advantage of the useful idiots in the Democrat controlled House and Senate in 2009-2010 and the Democrat Senate in the current Congress.

Additionally, Barack Obama knows after his re-election a Republican controlled House and Senate will not be able to enact any legislation to roll back the power previously granted to the Executive Branch or usurped by them. His veto will not be overridden as there will always be at least 145 Democratic members of the House or 34 in the Senate in agreement with or intimidated by an administration more than willing to use Chicago style political tactics.

The stalemate between the Executive and Legislative Branches will inure to the benefit of Barack Obama and his fellow leftists.

The most significant power Congress has is the control of the purse-strings as all spending must be approved by them. However, once re-elected, Barack Obama, as confirmed by his willingness to do or say anything and his unscrupulous re-election tactics, would not only threaten government shutdowns but would deliberately withhold payments to those dependent on government support as a means of intimidating and forcing a Republican controlled Congress to surrender to his demands, thus neutering their ability to control the administration through spending constraints.

Further, this administration has shown contempt for the courts by ignoring various court orders, e.g. the Gulf of Mexico oil drilling moratorium, as well as stonewalling subpoenas and requests issued by Congress. The Eric Holder Justice Department has become the epitome of corruption as part of the most dishonest and deceitful administration in American history. In a second term the arrogance of Barack Obama and his minions will become more blatant as he will not have to be concerned with re-election.

Who will be there to enforce the rule of law, a Supreme Court ruling or the Constitution? No one. Barack Obama and his fellow-travelers will be unchallenged as they run roughshod over the American people.

Many Republicans and conservatives dissatisfied with the prospect of Mitt Romney as the nominee for president are instead focused on re-taking the House and Senate. That goal, while worthy and necessary, is meaningless unless Barack Obama is defeated. The nation is not dealing with a person of character and integrity but someone of single-minded purpose and overwhelming narcissism. Judging by his actions, words and deeds during his first term, he does not intend to work with Congress either Republican or Democrat in his second term but rather to force his radical agenda on the American people through the power he has usurped or been granted.

The governmental structure of the United States was set up by the foundersin the hope that over the years only those people of high moral character and integrity would assume the reins of power. However, knowing that was not always possible, they dispersed power over three distinct and independent branches as a check on each other.

What they could not imagine is the surrender and abdication of its constitutional duty by the preeminent governmental branch, the Congress, to a chief executive devoid of any character or integrity coupled with a judiciary essentially powerless to enforce the law when the chief executive ignores them

Conservatives, Libertarians, the Republican Party and Mitt Romney must come to grips with this moment in time and their historical role in denying Barack Obama and his minions their ultimate goal. All resources must be directed at that end-game and not merely controlling Congress and the various committee chairmanships.

Steve McCann
May 12, 2012

I would add but 6 words to those above mentioned, Conservatives, Libertarians, the Republican Party and Mitt Romney, to say “and we the American people also”, must come to grips with this moment in time and our role in denying Barack Obama his life long goal of “transforming” us into his slaves working on his government plantation.

Please forward this to all you can, maybe together we can save America for ourselves and those who will follow after us.


I think we’ve just grown lazy and used to someone else doing things for us….and if we don’t speak up now, we might not ever have the ability again.

To My Father……



Dad.  Father.  Pop.  The Old Man.  Daddy.

The names we call the first man in our lives.  The man who is afraid to hold us because we might break and then is amazed when we grow up and cause all sorts of trouble.

My dad was always there for us girls, ‘his girls’ and he called us.  He worked and supported us financially and emotionally, mentally and physically.

He carried us on his shoulders, held us in his arms; He laughed with us, cried with us, and shared himself with us.

I was his oldest girl of 4 girls…no boys.  I was the one that was called on to help with the plumbing, the painting, the carpentry work, the handy man jobs, and all those things a son would have been assumed to help with.  And then we wondered why I went into Technical Theatre–putting all of those skills to use.

My first bike was a bike that was passed down in the family that he and I tore apart, repainted blue and silver and then re-assembled.  We built my first private bedroom together in the basement–that’s when I learned about doing electrical work, hanging drywall, and other fun carpentry jobs.

He was the driver on vacations and the chauffeur when we needed rides to friends.  He was there for report cards and first days of school.  He was there when we were sick and injured.  He was there with his camera, his flip top sunshades, black socks with converse tennis shoes and fishing hat as the epitome of a tourist.  He was there with handkerchiefs and strong shoulders for scrapes and bruises.

He was there for first jobs, first dates, first steps and first words.  He was there standing tall and proud as we became young women.  He was there when we graduated 8th grade, high school and college.

He got up early so that he could make the coffee, make our lunches, and get ready for the day before waking up mom and us kids for school.  He even took special orders!

He did the laundry and mowed the lawn.  He did most of the housework (mom was allergic to the soap and cleansers—and he didn’t like her going up and down the stairs with her heart problems).  And yes….he taught us how to do all of that too.

He took us to playgrounds and amusement parks, tourist attractions and historical sites.  He loved for us all to sing on trips, though he couldn’t carry a tune in a bucket—-but he sang and laughed with us for hours as he drove.

He taught me to read a map and encouraged me to figure out directions and alternate routes.  He took me for my driving test and then told me ‘to get lost’ so that I wouldn’t panic if I ever got truly lost. (Good advice!  It worked!)

He and I would have late night discussions about history, and politics, and religion, and life.  He explained the world as he saw it and pushed us to look at various sides.

But most of all….he was there.  Through the thick and the thin, he was there.

Until he wasn’t, having succumbed to death’s call.  But he lives on in “his girls'” minds.  His love and guidance virtues that we seek in our life partners.

Dad—we miss you and love you.  You are thought of and missed immensely.  Thank you for being mine 🙂  Happy Father’s Day!





ImageMoms….especially mine

Fifty years ago today, my mother celebrated her 1st Mother’s Day.

I was 8 months old and still needed to be carried and fed and changed.  I was a babbling baby

of needs and wants.  And she was pregnant with my sister.

By the next Mother’s Day, i was a walking, talking toddler with a baby sister who needed

all the attention of being carried and fed and changed.

Many Mother’s Days have come and gone since then.  In total my mother had 4 children,

of which, i am the oldest.

Mom saw us through childhood shots and diseases, broken bones, scrapes, bruises and boo-boos.

She saw us through kindergarten, grade schools, high schools, colleges, and/or tech schools.

She dressed us for church, for school, and for graduations.

She fed us, our friends, and planned parties for celebrations.

She baked for birthdays, Christmases and bake sales.

She taught us to cook, to clean, to think, and to imagine.

She became a Camp Fire Girl leader.

She sewed clothes and costumes, and made impromptu instruments.

She played piano for us to sing or dance to.

She taught us Catholic catechism.

She helped with homework.

She read us books.

She took us shopping.

She taught us how to love and how to forgive.

She taught us the values of family and friendship.

And in time, she saw us through boyfriends and dating.

And then, of course, weddings and pregnancies and miscarriages.

She was there for births, first baths and all the firsts for not only her daughter as mother,

but for her grandchildren’s firsts.

And in all these things, she talked with us.  She was part of our lives.

She instilled values and morals in us to guide us throughout our lives–

whether she was there or not.

As I have told many people throughout my adult life:

My mother raised 4 very independent strong women.

And she is grandmother to 27 men and women, boys and girls.

So today, on Mother’s Day 2012, as my mother celebrates her 50th Mother’s Day–

I want to say, thank you Mom.

For everything you have done,

and all you still do

for your girls,

for your family

Thank You!

and most importantly,

I love you!

God bless and keep you always!

Aunt Audrey


Today would have been my aunt’s 89th birthday.   She was my father’s oldest sister…15 years older.  Her name was Audrey Marie, having the same middle name as myself.  I was not named for her, but I sometimes think I should have been.  She was my favorite aunt, and of all my aunts, the one I miss the most.

She was born and raised in St Louis, along with her 2 older brothers, 2 younger sisters, and her youngest brother.  She was baptized, schooled, and accepted all of her Catholic sacraments at the Most Holy Trinity Church in St Louis.  She worked and as a young woman during World War II, she fell in love with Bob.

Bob was full blooded Chinese and from a distant territory known as Hawaii.  Against her father’s advice, but with her mother’s blessing, she and Bob eloped.  Her mother insisted on sending her oldest brother as a chaperone and as a witness to the wedding.   They went to California, but the Justice of the Peace refused to marry them because it was a bi-racial marriage.  Considering we had just ended a war with the Japanese, no one trusted any Oriental.  Kind of ironic in view of what we see in California today.

So off to Oregon they went.  Again they were refused on the same basis.  Off they went onto Washington.  It was there in the middle of the night that they found a Justice of the Peace that agreed to marry the happy couple.  With her brother as the witness, they made their vows until death do us part.

They boarded a ship to their new home in Honolulu, Hawaii.  Her brother returned to St Louis to tell the family that indeed, Audrey and Bob had married and had left for their new life.

Audrey had married the 3rd son of Chinese immigrants.  His 2 older brothers had been forced to return to Hong Kong to find their wives, but being ‘number 3 son’ he was able to travel to the mainland of the United States to find a wife.  Being the only Caucasian in a Chinese household was a new and sometimes frustrating situation.  She had to learn the traditions and obligations required in a Chinese family.  She had to learn and accept to live in a multi-generational home.  Being a Catholic in a non-Catholic home also came with its own set of problems.  But she held true to her faith and to her own traditions.

When she gave birth to her first child, whom she told me she named for her baby brother (my father), she was made to follow the Chinese tradition of walking to visit everyone that was to be invited to the child’s first birthday party.  In Chinese tradition, this celebration is 3 months after the birth of the child, as they believe that life begins at conception and therefore 3 months after the birth is 1 year.  She eventually had 2 sons and 3 daughters.

She worked in her husband’s family store, a type of department store in old Honolulu.  She was like any other employee, she told me several times.  At work she was like anyone else, at home she was wife and mother.

She came home several times to St Louis to visit her family, whoever was still living there.  She brought her husband and children whenever it was possible to.  She traveled to Michigan and New Jersey on occasion to visit her sisters in their homes.  And it was during one of these visits when I was about 13-14 years old that a tradition was born between the she and me.

She was at our house and we started talking.  The next thing we knew it was 2 or I3 o’clock in the morning.  We talked about everything…religion, life, my cousins, school, our travels, etc.  It was after this visit that I started writing to my aunt in Hawaii.

It was the mid-1970’s and I was just enamored with mail.  The idea that you could put a letter in the mail and a few days later, it was delivered and read thousands of miles away just fascinated my young mind.  And you can imagine my joy when she wrote back.  This began a wonderful relationship that lasted almost 25 years.  We wrote letters and shared all sorts of news.  I told her of my family and what I heard of her siblings and their families.  She told me of her life and family in Hawaii.  And now and again, she would staple a $5 bill to her letter to me and write across it “For Pepsi” because she knew how much I loved that stuff.

When she came to visit, we had our late night chats.  Even when I was a teen, my parents knew how special this aunt-niece relationship was and let me enjoy this special time with my aunt.  Once I became 16 and able to drive, I loved that she would take a day out of her trip to take me to the Art Museum and treat us to lunch in their restaurant.

It was after I was an adult and working a full-time job and living in my first apartment, that we began to supplement our letters with phone calls.  She would be surprised that I would call her and not worry about the money.  That I just wanted to hear her voice.

And when my father died and she came to visit months later, I was the one that was honored to take her to visit his grave site.  She lovingly laid an orchid lei on his grave and said her prayers for his soul.  I will never forget that day.

Audrey developed cataracts and the time came to have them removed.  She had the surgery and regained perfect eyesight….for 2 weeks.  She awoke one morning sneezing and then realized she could see nothing.  A visit to the doctor showed that her eyes had not completely healed and she had ‘blown’ the corneas.  Laser treatments failed to give her her eyesight back.  She was blind.  She went to a School for the Blind to learn how to do things like understand money by touch and how to pour a cup of coffee.  And she talked to me candidly about it.  She said that there was a child there that lost her sight in a skiing accident; that there was a young man that lost his eyesight to a car accident; and that there was a man there that lost his eyesight to diabetes.  And she was mad.  Not that she was blind but that they were.  I will never forget her words.  She said, “I have seen the world and enjoyed life.  These kids and young people haven’t!”  She had no self-pity in her situation.  She meant what she said.  She had seen and done everything that she wanted to do.  She embraced her life and all that it held for her.

It wasn’t until my 29th birthday that I was able to visit her in her home.  For a few wonderful days, my mother and I enjoyed the sites and sounds of Hawaii.  We dined with my aunt and her family.  We went site-seeing with my cousins.  And we payed our respects at the USS Arizona.

Four months later, on the day after her birthday, her husband Bob died after laying down with her for a nap.  He went peaceably out of this world and into the next.  He was able to see his his first 2 grandchildren before his death.

Before her death at the age of 73, dying in the same manner as her husband,  in her sleep, she was able to know her 3 grandchildren.   Having lived 50 years in Hawaii, thousands of miles from her birthplace, raising a family, and adopting a culture for the love of 1 man.  She saw the territory of Hawaii become the 50th state of the United States of America.  She saw the changes in America from a unique perspective.  I miss her letters and calls.  I miss our late night chats.  And I miss her courage and encouragement that she showed me.

I admired my Aunt Audrey.  I loved her.  I respected her.  She made time for a niece far away.  Her youngest child being just 6 months younger than me, she knew what I was going through as her own daughter went through it.  She told me stories of my father growing up.  And more stories about her parents.

It was her example to me that challenged me to be a better aunt when I became one.  I try to always make time for my nieces and nephews.  I only wish that I had 1 that wanted to write or call as I did with Audrey.

So Happy Birthday Audrey….and thank you for teaching this niece what family and commitment and love is all about.  I love you.