Finishing the Year on a Mixed Note (posted 12/30/22)

After a relaxing Christmas at home, I took a quick trip up to Tennessee with my wife and youngest daughter (and Wonder Dog, of course), to see my mom, sis and bro-in-law.  After I got back home, I read CO’s story of his car trip back from Memphis after the recent Southwest unpleasantness, and realized that we’d been in the same state together. 

I had my own small encounter with a weather-related traffic difficulty.  On the way north on Monday, Waze alerted us to a stoppage on the interstate just north of us, and sent us on a 4 mile detour on a two-lane country road.

Unfortunately, Waze apparently didn’t know that a light snow had been falling there, and some ice had formed on the little road we were on.  After a mile of driving through a very pretty snowy landscape, we turned a corner and found ourselves near the top of a fairly large hill, with two pick-ups stopped just ahead of us.

On either side of the road, two trucks and a SUV had slid off into a ditch.  But there was no turning back, so we spent the next 15 minutes creeping very slowly down that hill.  The ground was mostly level after that, and we were soon back on the interstate, and motoring along at 15 miles an hour. 

We had some good family time in TN, and the drive home was uneventful.  Regrettably, I didn’t stop at a Waffle House during the trip, like CO and the COD did.

But in my defense, I have eaten at the WH many times in my life, having not lived the kind of sheltered and deprived existence that CO did, until a loving God sent a storm that stranded him in Memphis, then provided him with an underpowered rental car and guided his path to the Casa de Waffle. 

He truly does work in mysterious ways.

Amid the holiday festivities, I intermittently checked on the news.  As soon as I heard of the infuriating and feckless GOP collapse on the $1.7 trillion omnibus package, I resolved to try to avoid any other political news until the new year.

I read some stories about the huge winter storm in Buffalo, which brought out the best and worst in people.  Many neighbors, friends and first responders rescued people trapped in their homes or cars.  But many others took advantage of the storm by looting.

Thankfully, in the tradition of the rooftop Koreans in LA, and Kyle Rittenhouse, and the FL sheriffs who encourage shooting looters, a few store owners sent the looters fleeing with some well-timed gunfire.  I found a short video, but couldn’t tell whether anyone had been hit or not.

For one brief moment I tried to give the thieves the benefit of the doubt.   Maybe their houses were out of power and they were hungry, so they felt driven to break into a grocery store and—

Oh wait.  The store they broke into was a weave store.  They were stealing weaves from a weave store, in a blizzard.

So there is only one thing to say to those store owners.

Aim small, miss small.    

That story reminds me of a near-constant in many crime stories: American criminals almost never steal necessities, out of real need.  They’re not stealing food, or bottled water, or formula for their children.

They’re stealing weaves, or Play Stations, or lottery tickets and cigarettes from convenience stores.  They’re grabbing high-end clothing and electronics and big screen tvs from big box stores.  They’re cutting catalytic converters out of cars. 

Or they’re Sam Bankman-Freid, stealing millions to donate to corrupt Democrats in an election year. 

Too often, our society is providing encouragement to criminals, and excusing or even praising their crimes. 

Poor people are being told that it’s only fair that they take from those who have more than they do.  Minorities are told that they deserve do-it-yourself reparations because of what long-dead people with roughly their same skin coloration suffered in the 19th century.  

Young ignorami are told that their country is evil, and “peaceful protests” that injure thousands and cause billions in damage are justified attempts to bring about “social justice.”

One example is Francis “Frankie” Carroll, a 22-year-old Antifa terrorist who was arrested earlier this month in an “autonomous zone” that he and his dimwit comrades established near Atlanta.  They were protesting the future Atlanta Public Safety Training Center. 

After many months of occupying the area, building makeshift treehouses and putting up tents and harassing the locals, the violent lefty dopes attacked cops with rocks and bottles.  After arresting them, the cops cleaned up the area and found gasoline, road flares and explosive devices. 

Young Frankie and four of his co-religionists were arrested with a raft of charges, including criminal trespass, aggravated assault, felony obstruction and domestic terrorism. 

You can probably guess his story: raised in poverty, broken home, criminal dad, junkie single mom, terrible schools, forced into gangs.

Nope.  He grew up near Kennebunkport Maine, in a mansion with his two sisters, his mom, and his millionaire physician dad.  He was in the honor roll throughout school, and spent time sailing on his folks’ small yacht.   (And you know how stressful yachting can be, what with needing to learn which side is port and which is starboard, and what a mizzen is, and remembering to re-apply sunscreen.)

He’s as spoiled as a Kennedy, and as white as Elizabeth Warren.  (#wemustneverstopmockingher)

Annnndddd… we’re back to politics. 

(Cue my eerily accurate Pacino impression: “Just when I think I’m out, they pull me back in.”)

Although there were a lot of high points this year, and the GOP will be taking over the House, the Dems escaped what should have been a severe beating on 11/8, and we’ve got to survive another two years of Biden’s metaphysically terrible administration. 

I’m looking forward to ringing in a new year and keeping politics in its proper place, and I hope you all are as well.   In my next column I’m going to lay out some hopes for 2023, and I’d like to hear some of yours, too.    

Fetterman/ Spoiled Frankie Carroll, 2024!

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