- The Washington Times - Monday, March 11, 2002

Pass the ketchup
"A number of years ago, we found that at Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri, the Army installation there was using diesel oil to provide battlefield smoke. Well, there were some pollution problems with it. We got them to switch to soy diesel to use as smoke. It provided the same benefit, and instead of coughing on the diesel fumes, the soldiers got hungry for french fries."
Sen. Christopher S. Bond, Missouri Republican, speaking at a Capitol Hill press briefing Friday on ethanol and energy security.

The Wizard of Waste
Live theater is coming to the Environmental Protection Agency's Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response, Inside the Beltway has learned.
"We've purchased some interesting new videos, and we will even have a live play on diversity!" EPA's bureaucrats were informed in a memo last week about diversity training activities scheduled at the agency this year.
There's no word yet on auditions.

Can't win
When former two-term Delaware Gov. Thomas R. Carper decided two years ago to seek a seat in the U.S. Senate, the Democrat knew he wouldn't have the support of everyone in his state, particularly Republicans.
It was during his final year as governor, he now tells the story, that a constituent walked up to him and said, "Were you the governor when we had the ice storm of the century?"
"And I said, 'Yes,'" Mr. Carper recalls.
"He said, 'Were you the governor when we had the blizzard of the century?' I said, 'Yes.'
"He said, 'Were you the governor when we had the flood of the century?' I said, 'Yes.'
"He said, 'Were you the governor when we had the drought of the century?' I said, 'Yes.'
"The guy said, 'You know what I think?' I said, 'No.'
"He said, 'I think you're bad luck.'"

Building walls
Holding important political debates in Spanish as Texas Democratic gubernatorial candidates Dan Morales and Tony Sanchez did for an entire hour on television last week is sending a destructive message to the people of Texas and this country.
So says Mauro E. Mujica, chairman and CEO of U.S. English and an immigrant from Chile. Founded in 1983 by the late Sen. SI "Sam" Hayakawa of California, U.S. English is working to make English the official language of government at both the federal and state levels.
"This is political pandering of the highest level," says Mr. Mujica. "If these candidates are so worried about all Texas voters, they should conduct their debate in all 170 languages other than English that are spoken today throughout the Lone Star State.
"Why, for example, do these gentlemen think that Spanish should be put ahead of Afrikaans, Hindi, Tagalog, Japanese or Slovak all languages spoken in Texas?"
Mr. Mujica says that in this age of diversity, speaking one common language is not only a symbol of American unity much like the U.S. flag and the Declaration of Independence but also a means of cementing citizens together.

Time to repent
Last week we previewed Alabama Rep. Robert B. Aderholt's legislation that would allow the display of the Ten Commandments in schools and other public buildings.
Now, that proposal is drawing fire from Americans United for Separation of Church and State, which says the legislation violates the U.S. Constitution, in particular the First Amendment.
"Aderholt isn't Moses, and Capitol Hill isn't Mt. Sinai," says the Rev. Barry W. Lynn, executive director of Americans United and a frequent radio and TV talking head. "Americans don't need politicians giving us instruction about religion."
Not so fast, says Mr. Aderholt, a former municipal judge and Congregationalist Baptist.
"For too long, government has attempted to censor expression of religion," the Republican says. "The Ten Commandments represent the very cornerstone of the values this nation was built upon and the basis of so much of our legal system here in America. Do not kill or steal, obey your parents, do not commit adultery. Who can argue with these important rules for any functioning society?
"The Founding Fathers believed that faith and morality were important to self-governments and freedom. At the same time, the Founders did not want to impose religion on anyone."
Mr. Lynn says that in addition to ignoring federal court precedent against government-endorsed religious displays, Mr. Aderholt's bill takes "the remarkable step of telling the judicial branch how to rule on future legal cases on this issue."
As far as he is concerned, "We'd all be better off if members of Congress started following the Commandments and stopped using them for crass political purposes."


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