The WeekEnder: July 6-8, 2007

Welcome to the second edition of The WeekEnder! The WeekEnder is a weekly series that will provide a hodgepodge of information to fill your soul, make you laugh, make you cry, and inspire you. Highlights of The WeekEnder include:

  • Some good news;
  • Some bad news;
  • A funny or unusual news item;
  • A highlight from the blogosphere;
  • A Link of the Week;
  • A Photo of the Week;
  • A Video of the Week;
  • A Quote of the Week;
  • A joke; and
  • A random thought from yours truly.
In this week's WeekEnder:

  • Granholm works to revitalize Michigan cities
  • Libby-rated
  • A uniquely-flavored ice cream
  • Keeping church and state separate
  • Following Senate races
  • An interesting view of Bush
  • Lighting up the sky
  • Wisdom of a Founding Father
  • A plea for funds
  • My idea for fame and fortune
Good news:
Governor Jennifer Granholm is working hard to fix Michigan's cities and make the state more attractive to those who would otherwise leave:
Governor Granholm Tuesday that the Michigan State Housing Development Authority will fund up to $25 million over the next four years to help eliminate blight in her eight "Cities of Promise."

The cities targeted are Detroit, Pontiac, Hamtramck, Highland Park, Flint, Benton Harbor, Saginaw and Muskegon Heights. These cities were identified based on conditions of declining population, extreme poverty, loss of industry and jobs, crumbling infrastructure and blighted neighborhoods.

Cities of Promise Initiative is a five year program that Governor Granholm kicked off in 2006. The program has the following goals:

  • Improving neighborhood safety for children
  • Substantially increasing the number of blighted residential structures demolished in each of the cities through strategic demolition activities
  • Increasing income and skills of homeless persons in the cities
  • Increasing the use of deconstruction (salvaging/recycling usable materials) in place of and/or in conjunction with demolition to remove unwanted structures and rebuild communities
  • Increasing the use of holistic, market-based neighborhood revitalization plans tied to the neighborhoods where blight is being addressed with MSHDA funds
Bad news:
As we all know, Scooter Libby got the Get Out of Jail Free card from his friend Dubya. LiberalLucy and others are none too happy about it, and neither am I. This guy compromised our national security, and Bush proved once and for all that he is not all that strong when it comes to protecting America.

Of course, Mitt Romney and Fred Thompson are happy.

Michigan ice cream truck driver may have sold pot
"Mommy, this ice cream tastes weird. What flavor is it?"

Southwestern Michigan authorities say they arrested an ice cream truck operator who was selling marijuana along with his frozen desserts.

After authorities got tips about the alleged pot-peddler, a deputy "heard jingling bells" about 2 p.m. Thursday and saw the ice cream truck entering a mobile home park, Berrien County sheriff's Lt. Keith Hafer said in a written statement.

Deputy John Hopkins stopped the truck, spoke with the driver and "detected the odor of marijuana coming from the truck (along with tutti-frutti and a couple other flavors)," Hafer wrote.

Blog highlight of the week: Accepting people of all religious persuasions
Tim Caldwell, an officer with thge Isabella County Democratic Party, gets it when it comes to patriotism and religion:

This day celebrates a time when a cluster of colonies banded together to tell England that they would not tolerate a system that oppressed people because they had different religious or political views then the majority. This would become a nation ruled by law, where a theocracy would not exist. This would be something not seen before among nations: a secular government where all religions could flourish, and where even the non-religious could find refuge.

Link of the week
We're just 487 days away from Election Day! I mentioned last week that if you want the Democrats in Congress to do more, they need to be backed up by bigger majorities in Congress, especially in the US Senate.

Senate 2008 Guru is a blog dedicated to tracking all 34 US Senate races set to appear on next November's ballots. What races are shaping up to be key? Have any GOP senators up for re-election in 2008 had a 'macaca' moment? You can find out the latest numbers and news on next year's US Senate races at Senate 2008 Guru.

Photo of the Week: Birthday Boy
Today is the 61st birthday of one of the greatest Presidents America has seen since - well, Clinton! So here's to the one who embarrasses himself as much as he embarrasses the nation he 'leads.'

Video of the Week: July 4th in Kentwood
Ithought I'd delight you with a video I shot of fireworks in my hometown of Kentwood on Wednesday:

Quote of the week: Thomas Jefferson
"Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude."

Joke of the Week: Bush's monument
I have the distinguished honor of being on the committee to raise $5,000,000 for a monument of George W. Bush.

We originally wanted to put him on Mt. Rushmore until we discovered there was not enough room for two more faces.

We then decided to erect a statue of George in the Washington, D.C. Hall Of Fame. We were in a quandary as to where the statue should be placed. It was not proper to place it beside the statue of George Washington, who never told a lie, or beside Dick Cheney, who never told the truth, since George could never tell the difference.

We finally decided to place it beside Christopher Columbus, the greatest Republican of them all. He left not knowing where he was going, and when he got there he did not know where he was. He returned not knowing where he had been, and did it all on someone else's money.

Thank you,
George W. Bush Monument Committee

P. S. The Committee has raised $1.35 so far.

Final thought
Okay, confession time. Mom and I have become big fans of the Fox game show Are You Smarter than a Fifth Grader? If you haven't seen the show, a contestant answers up to eleven questions on subjects ranging from "1st Grade Animal Science" to "5th Grade Astronomy." The top prize is $1 million. If you don't win the $1 million - which no one has to this point - you have to look into the camera and say "I am not smarter than a fifth grader."

I was watching the show last night, and of the 20 questions I saw, I knew the answers to all but one of them. I think I just might put my name in to be a contestant. (Actually, I'm considering putting my name in to be a contestant on the college versions of Jeopardy! and Who Wants to Be a Millionaire.)

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