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Archive for the ‘minnesota’ Category

      Here we go, the Republican party is gearing up for next weeks Republican National Convention.  Sen. John McCain is ready to announce his running mate.  Conservative supporters are warning that funding and advertising support can, and will, be withdrawn if he chooses a running mate that is pro-abortion.  Two of the people he is considering as a running mate are pro-choice…that is Sen. Joe Lieberman and former Pennsylvania Govenor Tom Ridge. 

       Of course, abortion is only one issue.  There are many issues to consider such as gay rights, health care, the war and bringing home the military men and women, economy, bank failures, terrorism,foreign policy, housing market, joblessness, federal bailouts in the lending and in transportation, education, cost of living and social security issues…but, with many Democrats unhappy with the elimination of Hillary Clinton as a running mate for Sen. Barack Obama…many of her supporters have pledged their support over to John McCain.  All of these issues is important to voters; but the Republican party is typically conservative.  Conservatives are looking for leadership that is going to reinforce the party’s basic standards as well as provide some economic stability in the country; while at the same time, correcting some of the perceived errors in the present administration.

         Also in the realm of possibility is Minnesota Govenor Tim Pawlenty and former Massachusetts Mitt Romney…both anti-abortion proponents.  With all of the difficulties since the last election, it is a little frightening to be standing on the edge of the unknown this time around.

         Sen. John McCain has to be very careful about who he announces as his pick.  He doesn’t want to exchange many of his supporters, with deep pockets, for those unhappy Democratic supporters.  If he is wise in his choosing of a running mate…those Democrats will be additional voters not replacements for those who were supporters in the first place; it could have a big impact.  

          I guess we are about to find out…as it has been announced that Sen. John McCain has picked his running mate and will announce it to the American public on Friday at noon in Ohio.  His running mate will get the word on Thursday!  I don’t think that people have been this anxious about the political arena as they are this year…but then, most people agree…the climate in the American culture hasn’t been as critical as it seems, at this time…for a great many years.  The outcome is terribly important.  Let’s hope that the running mate is a pick that many can get behind without controversy taking away from the issues at hand.        

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          The state of Minnesota has decided to pay the victims of the bridge collapse, on Interstate 35, last fall in Minneapolis.   The agreement is costing $38 million dollars.   The bridge fell, taking 13 people to their deaths.   It happened during rush hour traffic.  

          One hundred and fourty five people were injured.  It took up to three weeks to recover all of the bodies burried under the tangled metal and debris.   I remember watching the news on television; seeing those images and wondering how the family and friends could stand the waiting.   How does a goverment body, or an insurance company determine how much a life is worth?  I have a hard time understanding how they can arrive at a financial number that compensates a victim, or their families; for this kind of loss.  I do understand that they must try…but, what an awesome responsibility that must be!

        The bridge had been under construction before the collapse.  It allegedly had construction supplies stacked on the bridge.  The National Transportation Safety Board has been investigating the tragedy since the collapse trying to determine the cause.  Many have speculated that the bridge was over the weight limit because of heavy traffic as well as construction vehicles and supplies.  Others have suggested that the bridge had design flaws; as well as, the metal was possibly corroded from bird droppings, and therefore it was weakened. 

         It sounds as if the victims will receive $400,000; for those who were more extensively injured, there is additional funds to help with their medical expenses.  No matter what, the victim’s families who lost their loved ones in such a public way; will no doubt rather have their loved one with them than  receive financial compensation.  After all…who can possibly determine what a life is worth?  

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     Well,  just when i think  maybe  I have a chance at overcoming some of those heighth fears; something horrible happens to give my paranoia validation. 

     Right now, the news is filled with the horror of the bridge collapse in Minnesota.  So many people hurt,  many filled with terror and fear, many families dealing with grief and loss .   There are families not knowing what they are supposed to feel, as they dont know yet if they have lost their loved ones or if they are in some hospital unidentified. 

     A normal everyday occurance such as traveling over bridges or highway overpasses has the potential of destroying lives.  Yet, here in America, we do it everyday.  Most people do it with total and complete faith that when they do…they will get to the other side safely.  Some of us…cross them  with a wing and a prayer.  Some of us…clench our muscles , hold our breath and are shocked when we do make it over without incident.

     Sadly, there are many in the light of day today, who have had their whole world turned upside down.  Pray for them and all of the safety workers and inspectors, doctors and nurses as well.  Trauma is trauma and loss is so complete when it happens. 

     There are going to be people over the next few months who are going to be highly inconvienced by this catastrophe.   After all, it is a main source of travel thru that area.   Those who have lost family or friends , are going to be dealing with flashbacks and they are going to have to see this empty spot and relive it daily.  Keep them in mind.

     For people like me…i have just resolved to work on my fear of this type of thing.  In the back of my mind, i will have to work twice as hard to rewrite my thoughts when faced with pushing myself to do something i am terrified of.  Climbing into the heights and trusting that whatever “solid” structure that suspends me into the air is going to withstand the pull of gravity and stay “solid”.   Just because a panic attack of paranoia & fear of what could happen is, most of the time just that; there is the off chance that my fear of what could happen…COULD HAPPEN!

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