Wednesday, November 26, 2014


On Thanksgiving Day my wife and I will host our family for the big Thanksgiving meal. It has been our tradition for most of our married life. We are thankful that we have the opportunity to have our daughter and her family with us for Thanksgiving. We know not everyone is so fortunate.

Prior to the big day we let everyone know that they will be called on at the table to let the group know what they are most thankful for. This gives them the time to consider what they will share with the family. It has always been great to hear from the grandchildren. Sometimes they surprise us.

I love that tradition. It has caused me to think for myself what I am most thankful for. Most of the time when I sit down to write a column it is to complain about something or someone. Let’s face it, there’s a lot to complain about. But, for today and for the season I choose to find things for which I am grateful.

Of course the first thing on my list is my wife, Linda. Next month we will celebrate fifty-two years of marriage. Every day of those years has been a blessing for me. Then of course my family. I love my life as a father and a grandfather.

I am thankful to be an American. How blessed we are to have the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. I am thankful for the best military in the world and for what that deterrent means to this country. I am thankful for our political system which allows us to pick our leaders and to get rid of those who don’t get the job done.  Not everyone is so fortunate.

I am thankful for the opportunity that I have to sit at my computer and rant about whatever I choose and to have those rants published. I never have to worry that there will be a knock at the door from some government official asking me to explain. Our freedom of expression is what makes our country possible.

And for religious freedom. There is no state religion. There is no requirement that I have to believe anything or anyone about anything if I choose not to. I am free to worship in any way that I choose and any God that I choose.

I am thankful for debate. You don’t have to believe anything I say and I don’t have to believe anything you say either. You and I are free to disagree. We are free to discuss and debate any issue. Which brings me to this point. How grateful we all should be that we have newspapers that have the journalistic integrity to publish all sides of issues. We have an opinion page where we all can not only  express our thoughts but are encouraged to do so.

We truly are fortunate to be Americans. We can travel as far as our legs will carry us. Regardless of our origins, we have the freedom to rise to whatever level our talents and abilities take us.

So now we have a day set aside for thanksgiving. Don’t call it turkey day. Call it what it is, Thanksgiving Day. Be thankful for what you have, for your health, your liberty, and your freedom. Be thankful that you live in a country where freedom reigns today and everyday.

Ron Scarbro

Wednesday, November 19, 2014


“Grandpa, what’s a veteran? My teacher told us tomorrow was Veteran’s Day and I don’t know what it means.”

Well a veteran is any person who has ever served in the military service. “Why do they have a day? Are they special or something?”

Well little one, you are asking questions that deserve well thought-out answers. Let’s sit for a time and I’ll try to answer all your questions.

All through history it has been necessary for countries to have military forces to defend themselves when others try to invade and take their countries away from them. That is called war. America has had to defend herself many times since we first became a sovereign country. I served in our military and so did your Uncle Pete as well as your Aunt Thelma.

“So girls can be veterans too?” Yes they can and are. All through the years men and women together have stood side by side in defense of our country and our way of life. For many years women served only as nurses and other support services but today they can even join the fighting at the front of the battle. Many are flying jet fighter aircraft and driving tanks. They are warriors too.

“Tell me about war, Grandpa. Why do we have to have wars? Don’t people get hurt fighting in wars?”

Indeed they do. Hurt and even killed. But, military members have always been willing to give their all for their country. They do that so you can live free. They do that to protect your way of life. They do that because service is the sacred duty of a free people.

I don’t know why we have to have wars. I wish we didn’t. But what seems to  happen is people in a far away land decide that their religion is the only true religion or that they just want what we have. Some see our free way of life and they are just jealous. And some people are just evil. They are evil and cunning. They get themselves in positions of power in their countries and they decide to start wars. They want to make their countries bigger. They want the natural resources that belong to their neighbors and so they start wars. It has been that way since the beginning of time.

“Are veterans just people who fought in wars, Grandpa?” No, in fact most aren’t. Most are just individuals who put their lives on hold to enter the military service to fulfill their duty to make sure our deterrent force was capable of defending this country. They served their time and returned to civilian life. Most are probably a lot like me. They are proud of their time in the service and are happy they served.

On Veteran’s Day, though, we honor all who served. We honor those who fought wars. We honor those who were wounded and those who died fighting and didn’t return. We honor their families, their moms and dads, their sisters and brothers. We especially honor their wives and husbands. Their sacrifice can never be truly known or appreciated by anyone but them. We also honor those who only gave their time; those who joined but were never asked to fight. They all signed the same blank check payable to America, willing to serve and die if necessary that we all might remain free.

And so, little one, we set aside one day each year to especially pay tribute to our veterans.  If you see a veteran, thank him or her for their service. Thank them for the life you have and the freedom you enjoy. I am thankful for Veteran’s Day. In fact I wish every day was Veteran’s Day.

Ron Scarbro


Have you ever heard of Jonathan Gruber? Gruber is an economist and a professor at MIT, the Massachusetts Institution of Technology.  Gruber also served as a consultant on a panel which wrote the language in the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare. As a consultant he was paid over one million dollars.

I am going to paraphrase some of what this individual has recently said regarding the language of the act. He claims they had to use “tortured” language in order to get by the Congressional Budget Office. The CBO would have had to call the individual mandate a tax unless they essentially lied about what was really going on. He went on to say that the American voters were too stupid to know what was good for them. In his view the lack of transparency was necessary to get the bill by the voters because if they knew what was really in the Act, they would be just too stupid to vote for it. He further added that he would rather lie to get the bill passed than to tell the truth and have the bill die because the resulting Obamacare was good for the American people. That, by any definition, is unbridled elitist arrogance. What he is actually saying is that you, the American people, are too stupid to know what is good for you. You need some elitist arrogant snob to make your choices for you. You cannot be trusted to decide for yourself.

Well let’s see what has happened since this law was passed. First, the Supreme Court has found that in fact the individual mandate is a tax. And, in response to that finding, the “stupid American voters” rejected the Congress people who voted for it. The next thing that is going to happen is bills to repeal Obamacare will be reintroduced in the new Congress. Without doubt the president will veto them but, Democrats who watched in horror as their colleagues were trounced in the midterms may want to rethink their positions. Obviously the final chapter on Obamacare has not yet been written.

This column is not about the merits of Obamacare, though. This piece is about the arrogance of some individuals who think they know what is best for us. From the foods we eat to the light bulbs we use to the kind of cars we drive. Obamacare will live or die on its own merits or lack of them. Elitist arrogance, however, goes on forever. These self anointed guardians of the public can’t seem to understand that America was founded upon the proposition that we are free people. We are responsible for ourselves and our choices. If you lie to us to get your point across, we will find out and we will respond. And you are probably not going to like our response.

And now a special message to Professor Gruber and people of that ilk. There is not a person on this earth who is intellectually or emotionally qualified to make my decisions for me. I will choose for myself as have my forefathers. I and I alone am responsible for my choices and their consequences as are you. I promise not to interfere in your life. Please show me the same respect, whether you think I am smart enough or not. If my choices are unwise, I will suffer the consequence. I am neither your servant nor your subject. I am a free person and I choose to live that way and I pity your seeming inability to understand that basic American  notion.

Ron Scarbro

Wednesday, November 5, 2014


You expect it from Joe Biden. He opens his mouth to speak and he inserts his foot. It’s just Joe, we are told. Well it is time we exposed another politician who suffers from hoof in mouth disease. That would be Hillary Clinton, of course.

We know of her infamous “Who cares” comment at a Benghazi hearing. “Who cares?” Really, Hillary?  Her latest tops that ridiculous remark. In a recent speech she literally said don’t let anyone fool you. Businesses and corporations do not create jobs. Is that not the dumbest remark anyone could make? Who, Ms. Clinton, do you think does create jobs? Do you think it is the government? How about the other liberal fantasy of bottom-up economics?

It is the simplest of the simple. The consumer wants or needs a product or service. A business or corporation builds or makes that product or service available. Of course the business must have employees to do the work of creating the product or service. The business sells their product. The company makes a profit. The employees are paid wages based on the value of their labor. Those employees then become consumers in the same marketplace buying products and services. Money changes hands and an economy is created. How simple is that?

Government, on the other hand, produces nothing. Did you hear that Hillary? Government produces nothing. To any business or corporation government is an expense just like the costs of raw materials and labor. In fact if there were no successful businesses or corporations, there would be absolutely no need for government, period.

To those of you who might say that government builds the roads, I would answer yes, but they get their funding from successful business. If there were no successful business, there would be no need for roads. Look at Afghanistan. They have no businesses or corporations. They have no roads. They have no infrastructure. They are settlements of goat herders and opium growers who are constantly at war with each other for entertainment if for no other reason.

Politicians often reveal their true selves at times when the microphone is on and their brain is off. But I don’t think Hillary would take back her statement even if she could because, in her warped view, she truly believes it. Like so many politicians and Washington denizens, she has never had a real job. She has never had to manage a for-profit company. She and they live in a fantasyland of government gobbledygook and bureaucratic speak. They don’t create anything but regulation and problems for the taxpayers to pay or solve. They are a liability, not an asset.

The idea that Hillary Clinton could ever be the President of the United States is repugnant to me and should be to all thinking individuals. I read today that she is favored by 47% of Democrats to be their nominee in 2016. Surely even the Democrats could do better. On second thought her only competition seems to be Elizabeth Warren. God help us if either of these extremely unaccomplished individuals ever darkens the doors of the White House. If you think this country is in trouble now, you have no idea of what could be.

This brief suggestion to Hillary’s handlers. I don’t know if there is any cure for “hoof in mouth disease,” but before she gets in front of another microphone you might want to check her meds.

Ron Scarbro