By JOHN BOXLEY

Not That You Asked

I'm telling you this job just gets easier and easier. Just last week I wrote about the effort to overturn some of the tax breaks oil companies get since they are making record profits. I also wrote that one of the arguments against ending the tax breaks would be that raising those taxes would cost jobs. It happened. The Senate voted on the proposal last Tuesday and, while it passed 52-48, it was a loss because it came short of the 60 votes that would have made it filibuster proof. Our two senators voted along party lines with Democrat Mark Pryor voting to end the tax breaks and Republican John Boozman voting to keep them in place. And get this, part of Boozman's reasoning for keeping the tax breaks was that ending them would "eliminate well paying American jobs." You see why I say this job is so easy? Compared to this shooting fish in a barrel would be a challenge. And now on to an entirely different subject, but again, an easily predictable one. Arnold Schwarzenegger has joined the ever-growing fraternity of politicians who have cheated on their wives. The fraternity has grown so big you might just wonder why these stories are still considered news. It's almost as if such behavior is just part of a politician's career path. First you decide to run, you get elected, and you cheat on your wife. Then when you're caught, you announce that you've made a mistake, your wife has forgiven you, and you have found Jesus. Since Arnold is a Republican, he may try the same excuse Newt Gingrich used. You remember don't you? He claimed that at times when he was working hard for the country he would be overcome by a wave of passionate patriotism and have to have sex with the first woman who came along. In Arnold's case that woman just happened to be the maid, who was willing to go along because she too is a patriot. Maria can take solice in that this was the first Kennedy sex scandal where the Kennedy was the innocent victim. The Kennedy men have all been notorious womanizers. Her grandfather Joe was so brazen he brought his mistresses home with him. Her uncle John once claimed that if he didn't make whoopie at least once in a 24-hour period he woud get migraine headaches. Her other uncle Bobby was not quite as active as the others, but he and Ethel did have 11 children. The men in Maria's generation have also held up the family tradition. One of Bobby's sons had an affair with his kids' babysitter. William Kennedy Smith was put on trial and charged with rape. You may not have liked the Kennedy's politics, you have to admit, they did keep us entertained. What's the moral to all of this? It's that politicians are far too predictable. With very little effort you can predict how any one of them vote on any issue and how he will defend that vote. Also, most of the men will be tempted to forget their marital vows and most of them will.

Halloween fears no big deal

Friday, October 30, 2009

This Saturday, depending on your point of view, your children will dress up in costumes and collect candy from the neighbors, or go to church and pray for the souls of all of the kids out getting candy. I don't know exactly when Halloween became a form of devil worship, but I'll bet that that story came from the same people who claim there is a war on Christmas.

I don't know why some people feel the need to complicate their lives by adding pressures and fears that there is no reason to have. There are plenty of real problems they could focus on, but not for them. They would rather worry about the girls who will turn to witchcraft because they dressed like a witch for Halloween.

There are enough parents who worry about this that in most schools parents won't let there children participate in Halloween parties. The school actually have to arrange alternate activities for them.

Do you want to know how silly it is to be afraid of Halloween? In fact the holiday is considered the eve of All Saints Day, and is considered to be a holy day. The only people who look at Halloween that way today are dentists.

Speaking of dentists, can you imagine a worse way to make a living? For starters, most people fear a trip to your office. Also, who wants to spend the day poking around in the mouths of strangers?

Back to the subject at hand, I have a niece and nephew that will dress up in costumes and go around the neighborhood asking for candy. I'm not worried about it. They have been doing it for years, and they haven't yet shown any interest in Devil worship or witchcraft.

When I was a trick or treater all we cared about was the candy. Nobody from back then has gone to the dark side. There were some mean kids in the neighborhood, but they were that way all of the time, so you can't blame the holiday.

The only thing I worry about on Halloween is the tradition of pulling pranks. While most of them are harmless some kids will go out of their way thiking of new ways to get away with bad behavior.

I will leave you with this holiday advice. Keep a pitcher of water by the door. If you open it and there is a bag on fire, you'll thank me.