Mountain Views News, Combined Edition Saturday, May 21, 2022

MVNews this week:  Page 14

14 Mountain Views-News Saturday, May 21, 2022 OPINION 14 Mountain Views-News Saturday, May 21, 2022 OPINION 




Susan Henderson 


Dean Lee 



Patricia Colonello 


John Aveny 


Peter Lamendola 


Stuart Tolchin 
Audrey SwansonMeghan MalooleyMary Lou CaldwellKevin McGuire 
Chris Leclerc 
Bob Eklund 
Howard HaysPaul CarpenterKim Clymer-KelleyChristopher NyergesPeter Dills 
Rich Johnson 
Lori Ann Harris 
Rev. James SnyderKatie HopkinsDeanne Davis 
Despina ArouzmanJeff Brown 
Marc Garlett 
Keely TotenDan Golden 
Rebecca WrightHail Hamilton 
Joan Schmidt 
LaQuetta Shamblee 

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Really I hope the future was now or even that the past 
was the present. I am having a great deal trouble accepting this 
present time as anything but a bad dream. I have always had few 
expectations and for that reason I am rarely disappointed. Last 
week, however, I made a terrible mistake. 

Early in the morning I stopped into a Starbucks for a cup of 

coffee and while waiting observed 4 or 5 people sitting at a table 
enjoying their coffee and simultaneously typing away on their lap tops or IPads or whatever 
you call them. I made the mistake of imagining myself doing likewise far from the 
dreaded distraction of television or the pleasures of just sitting on the deck counting the 
newly appearing yucca plants. 

There I would be at Starbucks or some such place, free of distractions, close to potential 
snacks without having to stray far from the computer upstairs to search through 
the refrigerator or the pantry after I first worried that I would fall down the stairs. A 
common occurrence to several of my similarly aged friends. 

Anyway, I seem to already have deviated a bit from my intended topic of discomfort 
with the present. After noticing the happily occupied folk at Starbucks I returned 
home and mentioned to my wife that I would love to have some sort of device that allowed 
me to feel productive away from home. 

To further explain I am typing this article and all five hundred or so of my previous articles 
on our home computer which is in my office upstairs away from the refrigerator, 
the pantry, and the outside deck. It has a raised keyboard with large individual keys and 
a large monitor and I am fairly comfortable typing away on it. Unfortunately I never 
learned to type well enough to type without looking at the keys and therefore often don’t 
notice the errors I invariably make. 

For complex reasons which I don’t really understand I have been unable to learn the mechanics 
necessary to send my compositions to another destination. I require every week, 
after writing the article, to ask my wife for help in sending the article to the editor and 
then to my IPhone. From the IPhone I am able to send the articles, now proofread by my 
reluctantly assisting wife, to various perhaps interested friends. Along with the articles I 
send individual notes making use of my IPhone. Constructing these individual notes is 
always a great joy for me. Unfortunately the keyboard on the IPhone is miniscule as is 
the monitor and additionally has this feature called auto-correct which has a mind of its 
own. Frequently, I receive replies telling me that the individual notes to the reader are 
undecipherable or incomprehensible or both. Even in these situations I am grateful to 
receive a response and I attempt to make apologies often in an additional garbled Email. 

To now approach my real point. My ever helpful wife appreciated my yearning 
for a portable device with a large keyboard and monitor and within a day or so such a 
machine, together with carrying case, appeared in the house. I now had the expectation 
that I would soon learn to use the machine and life would be grand. I searched in the 
carrying case for a User Manual and could not find one. I do think such a manual exists. 
I attempted to learn how to use the device and could not even begin to solve complexities 
such as how to turn the damn thing on. My wife felt that she had already done more than 
enough and would assist me no further. My daughter is so overworked that she has no 
time to help so I have prevailed upon helpful friends and colleagues to assist me. They 
have spent hours with me and I still can't learn. Unfortunately, there has been a further 
consequence. I have become so wedded to the idea of using my newly obtained device 
to compose and send off my weekly article that it had almost become completely impossible 
for me to use the home computer and compose any articles. I finally used the home 
computer to create this article but could think of little else beyond my difficulties with 
the new device. 

I hope that after reading this article it will reveal to you some relevance to your own life 
which will increase your own self-understanding. In this way I believe I am helping to 
bring about a better future which justifies my continued frustrated and frustrating efforts. 
Yours to a better tomorrow—but don’t expect too much. 



Prom season is upon us. 

It’s wonderful to see the excitement on the faces of young people as 
they pose for photos in their front yards, dressed up in their finest 

I hate to admit it, but I feel bad for these young people. 

As they stand there being photographed, enthralled by the last 
event of their high school years, they have little idea what their future holds. 

After spending their entire lives in an era of low inflation, cheap money and a growing 
economy, they must now feel the sting of higher costs. 

Because their fancy dresses — along with everything else in our inflation-wracked 
economy — are so expensive this year, the trend for many young women has been to 
choose lower-cost fabrics, according to MSN. 

Many kids will head off to college where they and their parents will be greeted with 
ever-increasing college bills. 

I hope they make wise choices. If they don’t have the big bucks to pay for college, I hope 
they don’t borrow tens of thousands of dollars to do so. 

I also hope they do what many wise students have been doing for years — start at a 
community college, where the costs are reasonable, then transfer the credits to another 
school in their junior year. 

Finding meaningful, well-paying work is hard enough without starting your career up 
to your neck in student-loan debt. 

Speaking of debt, our political leaders keep racking up ridiculously huge debt and deficit 

As baby boomers retire — as we cash our Social Security checks and run up Medicare 
bills — guess who is going to have to pay them? 

That’s right, those young, smiling people posing for prom photos on mom and dad’s 

Worse yet, as our country’s never-ending debt strangles the economy, at some point 
many of the government programs today’s high school grads will be funding will have 
to be cut, which means they likely won’t get to enjoy them when they become old. 

Watching today’s prom kids makes me realize how lucky I have been. 

I graduated from high school in 1980. When I got out of college in 1984 I was greeted by 
a booming economy and, despite being an English major, a good job with a high-tech 
company that was also booming. 

My generation had a lot of reasons to be optimistic and all of my friends have done 
very well in their careers — some of them have enjoyed financial success beyond their 
wildest dreams. 

My parents graduated in the 1950s and they, too, had reason to be optimistic. 

They grew up with nothing and went on to live better than they ever expected in a 
country and an economy that blossomed wonderfully throughout most of their lives. 

We still have an opportunity to save the future of our prom goers, but that would require 
us to get our act together. 

We could get leaders from both parties to focus on the expensive elephant in the living 
room — our $30 trillion debt — and rein in federal spending now before we are forced 
to do so later. 

But all our political leaders do is “talk.” 

“Congressional leaders make progress on spending talks,” the headlines always say. 

They never say, “A bold plan to rein in spending and save the future of young Americans 
was signed by the president today!” 

So enjoy your prom, my young American friends. I hope you have the time of your 
lives, because, I fear, you are in for a rocky adulthood. 

Tom Purcell is an author and humor columnist for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Email 
him at 



19th century German 

Statesman (German 

Statesman?) Otto Von Bismarck is 

quoted as having said, “Laws are like sausages, it is 
better not to see them being made.” I think Herr Bismarck’s 
cautionary warning holds true not only regarding laws being 
made, but also politics in general. 

Otto died in 1898 so he had no idea of how TV, radio, cable, 
internet, cell phones and billboards would permeate every 
facet of our waking hours with the butchery. 

Grasping for perspective in these waning days prior to the upcoming 
elections, Famous and I once again turn to our great 
American hero, Will Rogers. It’s illuminating, and fun to examine 
his musings on the body politic and see if his 90+ year 
old comments still hold relevance. You be the judge. Among 
his quotes: 

“Every man looks good until he is elected.” 

“If every radio went off the air from now till election day, it 
would be a godsend to a suffering public, and no loss to political 

“Democrats, if the Republicans get a slush fund, don’t waste 
all your time criticizing and investigating theirs; get out and 
get a bigger one yourself…” 

“There is nothing that will send a candidate to bed as drunk 
and dejected on election night as for him to be endorsed by a 
President. Voters just don’t like a President butting in.” 

“The ‘Outs’ are attacking and the ‘Ins’ are defending. All the 
‘Outs’ have to do is promise what they would do if they got in. 
But the ‘Ins’ have to promise what they would do, and then 
explain why they haven’t already done it.” 

“I believe that a man should be allowed to spend as much as 
he can to be elected… If you put a man in that was elected on 
nothing but campaign speeches, you are going to have nothing 
but a wind-bag to represent you.” 

“It (elections) don’t mean anything. We been staggering along 
under every conceivable horse thief that could get into office, 
and yet, here we are, still going strong.” 

“The campaign lasted only a few months, but it will take two 
generations to sweep up the dirt.” 

“History has proven that there is really nothing in the world 
as alike as two candidates. They look different till they get in, 
but then they all act the same.” 

And an honorable mention to Groucho Marx when he said, 
“Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, 
diagnosing it incorrectly, and applying the wrong remedies.” 

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