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Jewish World Review August 24, 1999 /12 Elul, 5759

Thomas Sowell

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Random Thoughts -- RANDOM THOUGHTS on the passing scene:

So many parents today are so permissive that they can hardly be called parents. Perhaps "adult hosts" might be a more accurate term.

An inmate in a Florida prison wrote to agree with me on the availability of guns, saying that a "criminal can and will get a stolen gun faster than you can get your car washed." He also points out that many criminals prefer guns gotten illegally, since they will be harder to trace.

Research in ten states reaches similar conclusions. Do you know of any other written agreement that can be ended by one side as easily as a marriage? Franklin D. Roosevelt used to refer to "the forgotten man." Today, with junk mail and telemarketers always after us, we should be so lucky as to be forgotten.

Why is it that, as the education in our public schools gets more watered down and worthless, graduation ceremonies and proms get more and more elaborate and expensive? Everything that can be argued about doesn't have to be argued about. There are people whose whole lives would be different if they understood that.

Too many people are singing "Stormy Weather" who should be singing, "Buckle Down, Winsocki." Now that Linda Tripp has been indicted, there is the prospect that everyone who told the truth about the events leading up to the impeachment crisis will be harmed and everyone who lied will go scot free. The address of the Linda Tripp Legal Defense Fund is P.O. Box 4240, Capitol Heights, MD 20791- 4240.

The youngest baseball player to play in the major leagues and the oldest were both pitchers -- Joe Nuxhall (15 years old) and Satchel Paige (59). The right to die all too readily becomes the right to kill -- especially since those who are dead cannot dispute the story told by those who are still living.

When Congress gets through investigating Attorney General Janet Reno, will her agency become known as the Obstruction of Justice Department? The civil rights movement was one of the great moral crusades in the first half of the twentieth century. Unfortunately, in more recent times it has become all too much like those it opposed, demanding racial double standards and even condoning verbal and violent attacks against members of other races.

It is fascinating to watch Hillary Clinton pretending to be a human being. Social Security forces individuals to save for their old age. But it also enables the government to spend those savings immediately, so that the country as a whole is not saving anything this way. That is why old-age pensions will have to be paid from money taken from others in the future.

When you are your own worst enemy, someone who tells you that other people are the cause of your problems is no friend. Already media and political slimes are trying to dig up dirt from the youthful days of Texas Governor George W. Bush. Apparently this is a continuation of the spin-masters' attempts to confuse private actions with public illegalities like perjury and obstruction of justice. Personally, I could not care less about Governor Bush's youth. I am just happy to be alive after some of my own youthful actions.

There was a time when we honored those who created the prosperity and the freedom that we enjoy. Today we honor the complainers and sue the creators. Perhaps that is inevitable in an era when we no longer count our blessings, but instead count all our unfulfilled wishes. When I saw Monica Lewinsky listed among the ten most admired women in America, I knew that I was no longer living in the country I grew up in. Maybe someone as foreign as me should apply for a green card.

When some advertiser says that its product is "made from natural ingredients," just what does that mean? Since businesses do not create matter out of nothing, but simply transform the matter that already exists, everything is made from natural ingredients. An optician in Palo Alto, California, named his store a "Site for Sore Eyes."


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©1999, Creators Syndicate