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November 13, 1996
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And who's not always in search of a bargain? This writer must confess
that one of his greatest vices is frugality - I was taught from
childhood that "A penny saved is a penny earned" and still I try to
practice that philosophy.
I can't really explain what happened to my fortune, but If I had all the
money I've saved by driving second-hand vehicles and shopping garage
sales instead of malls, logic would say that I've stockpiled a plenty,
but for some reason my accountant can't find it.
When a reader picks up his newspaper, he routinely reads his inner
personality. An active person may prefer the front page, a laid back
person reads first the comics; one co-worker jokingly commented that he
reads the obituaries the first thing in the morning to make sure he
survived the night - but this eccentric always reads the classifieds.
Tonight a particular ad caught my attention - it read "Wanted to buy
good used black and white monitors." I pondered this a while, then
resorted to my dictionary in search of this unknown moitors. It wasn't
to be found in my unbridged Websters."
"Well," I tell myself, "since you've been out of circulation for seven
years, it's probably something to do with computer technology, so call a
colleague and confess your ignorance."
When my teacher friend didn't know the word either, I gave her the
number in the ad and asked her to call pretending to have some used
motors to sell, and thus we could inconspicuously learn what moitors
She called the number and informed the gentlemen that she had seen the
ad in the paper and she thought she might have what he was looking for.
He enthusiastically blurted, "You really have some good monitors to
No," she replied. "I'm sorry - I read it to be motors. "Ah, that darn
paper," he sighed disappointed, "they've misspelled the word in my ad
So, nobody made a sale and nobody saved any money, but it turned out
It even reminded me of the time I scolded a student for misspelling so
many words on his paper and gave him a dictionary. He looked at me
innocently and asked, "If I don't know how to spell it to begin with,
how do you expect me to find it in here?"
EDITOR'S NOTE: Jerry Hulsey is a former school teacher who writes for
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This is the kind of irrational gibberish that emerges whenever liberals
attempt to express thought and it goes a long way toward explaining why
liberism has fallen into such disrepute in this country. It is worth
noting that the harshest criticism Bob Dole leveled at President Clinton
during the campaign was to call him a liberal and that Clinton
vigorously denied the charge.
In any event, the treatment of hard drugs is one issue in which the
liberal "view" cannot be allowed to prevail. The likely consequences for
our society would be catastrophic and require generations to repair.
It is true that many years of vigorous prosecution of the drug trade,
backed by tough prison sentences, has not eradicated drug abuse. But
whatever savings might accrue from abandoning efforts to control hard
drugs would be more than offset by the rampant social pathologies
attendant to drug abuse that would ensue.
The eagerness of many of our citizens, especially our young people to
experiment with hard drugs despite the many dangers associated with them
is well known. Indeed recent data suggest a strong increase in use of
marijuana among teenagers, a frightening trend that could augur worse to
come as many of these youngsters seek out more intense highs from strong
drugs. A prime example is methamphetamine, an easily-produced substance
which causes a crack cocaine-like high of much longer duration (two days
Widespread methamphetamine use in California was a major contributor to
a record 50 percent increase in hospital emergency room admissions in
1994 and the correlation to criminal activity is even more striking.
In San Diego, 80 percent of people arrested have drugs in their system,
more than half methamphetamines. The Drug Enforcement Administration
estimates that half of all violent crime and one-third of all homicides
are related to drug use.
Perhaps inadvertently, the Clinton administration has telegraphed a
passive attitude toward drug abuse by slashing funds for drug
enforcement and reducing its priority.
Consequently, there is a widespread perception that the administration
winks at drug abuse. The lack of moral leadership on this critical issue
Fortunately, despite the lack of firm support from the White House,
federal and state drug agents continue their arduous and often dangerous
campaign to stem the drug tide, and a growing number of businesses are
joining the fight. Since 1987, drug testing among major corporations has
risen 277 percent and upwards of a third of all new hires will be drug
tested this year.
We dare not delude ourselves that the problem of addictive drugs will
simply fade away if only we legalize them. As bad as our drug problem
is, it would be a thousand times worse in the absence of an aggressive
campaign against it. The war on drugs is a struggle for the very heart
and soul of our society. It is a struggle we must continue with resolute
determination come what may.
By Dr. Richard L. Lesher, President, U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
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