Saturday, January 24, 2009

Is everybody happy?!?!



Our oldest granddaughter, Hannah, (left) is three years old today. Within the next 26 days all 4 of them will celebrate their third, second, and first birthdays respectively. Like most grandparents, we take a ton of pictures, and we're downright obnoxious about flashing them around.

It is quite a challenge to get them all sitting still, smiling and looking in the same direction for a picture. It took 75 tries to get their Christmas picture co-ordinated to suit their mothers. Hannah and Audry love to mug for the camera, and Dawson is happy most of the time anyway. Two year-old Rebekah, on the other hand, tends to be a little less of a conformist, and is not always quite as willing to invest so much time in simply sitting still and smiling. They say it takes a little more to keep her happy.

I'm not convinced that is the case. I think Rebekah is a little bit like her Grandpa. Sometimes it takes a little less to keep us happy.

Our new President, Barack Obama, has his work cut out for him trying to keep 300 million people happy. I can't imagine that we will all ever be happy at the same time, and I imagine that there are some will never be happy as long as he is President.

A lot of Democrats are happy simply because Obama won the election. One of the bitterest Democrats I have ever had occasion to deal with is positively giddy over the outcome. And in as much as I expect a Democratic President to push Democratic party ideals and programs, I suspect most Democrats will have a lot to smile about for the next few years.

It might take a little coaxing to get a smile out of some Republicans, but I think if everybody calms down and looks around, they will see a continuation of the handout and bailout policies that we have been operating under for the past 8 years. There might be a small percentage of change in the amount that is taken and given, and there might be a small change in who is giving and who is taking, but the redistribution concept will remain the same, and continue to expand.

There could even be something for Libertarians to smile about. Obama appears to be serious about correcting at least some of the government sponsored rights violations. He has also pledged to shut down government programs that are found to be ineffective. Now, I understand that my definition of "ineffective" might not be the same as Mr. Obama's, but it's at least worth a grin.

I don't have any illusions that Mr. Obama will give me a lot to smile about in the next few years. While the other parties seem to beam whenever they come up with some new plan to spend our money or some new program to control our lives, Libertarians are much happier with less government spending and less government control. And while I was happy that the President froze the salaries of his White House staff, I also heard that he had rescinded President Bush's order that my tax dollars could only be used to fund abortions in the United States, and that they could now be used to fund abortions around the world. Going from bad to worse has a way of wiping the smile right off of your face.

I'm sure Rebekah's doting grandparents are going to be snapping thousands of pictures over the next few years, and I imagine she'll get bored with us long before her sister and cousins do. From a political standpoint, I'm also pretty sure that those of us who prefer less government won't have any more to be happy about than we've had in the last few years.

But I can't stop smiling when I'm around those babies.

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