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One Lightbulb At A Time

This is passed along from an e-mail I received.  While the specific story about one chain selling something made in the U.S. and the other selling the same product made in China has not been verified by me, the concept of buying an American Made product whenever possible makes sound economic sense.

Ever since our manufacturing base has been shipped to foreign countries our country has suffered a decline.  This decline and resulting economic impact will continue until such time as we start bringing manufacturing JOBS BACK TO THE UNITED STATES.  We can vote with our pocketbooks and our hearts by BUYING AMERICAN WHENEVER WE CAN!

Good idea .. . one light bulb at a time . .

A physics teacher in high school, once told the students that while one grasshopper on the railroad tracks wouldn’t slow a train very much, a billion of them would. With that thought in mind, read the following, obviously written by a good American.

Check this out . I can verify this because I was in Lowes the other day for some reason and just for the heck of it I was looking at the hose attachments. They were all made in China . The next day I was in Ace Hardware and just for the heck of it I checked the hose attachments there. They were made in USA . Start looking.

In our current economic situation, every little thing we buy or do affects someone else – even their job . So, after reading this email, I think this lady is on the right track . Let’s get behind her!

My grandson likes Hershey’s candy . I noticed, though, that it is marked made in Mexico now. I do not buy it any more.

My favorite toothpaste Colgate is made in Mexico … now I have switched to Crest. You have to read the labels on everything.

This past weekend I was at Kroger. I needed 60 W light bulbs and Bounce dryer sheets. I was in the light bulb aisle, and right next to the GE brand I normally buy was an off-brand labeled, “Everyday Value. ” I picked up both types of bulbs and compared the stats -

they were the same except for the price .. The GE bulbs were more money than the Everyday Value brand but the thing that surprised me the most was the fact that GE was made in MEXICO and the Everyday Value brand was made in – get ready for this – the USA in a company in Cleveland , Ohio.

So throw out the myth that you cannot find products you use every day that are made right here.

So on to another aisle – Bounce Dryer Sheets . yep, you guessed it, bounce cost more money and is made in Canada . The Everyday Value brand was less money and MADE IN THE USA ! I did laundry yesterday and the dryer sheets performed just like the Bounce Free I have been using for years and at almost half the price!

My challenge to you is to start reading the labels when you shop for everyday things and see what you can find that is made in the USA – the job you save may be your own or your neighbors!

If you accept the challenge, pass this on and share it with your friends so we can all start buying American, one light bulb at a time! Stop buying from overseas companies whenever you can! We should have awakened a decade ago.

Let’s get with the program help our fellow Americans keep their jobs and create more jobs here in the U.S.A.

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Posted by Steve Maziarz - November 10, 2010 at 5:28 am

Categories: ALERTS, Observations, Patriots Postings, The Meltdown   Tags:

Servicemembers Civil Relief Act

I was doing a little exploring and ended up finding out about the many benefits available to active duty military personnel while deployed. Such as ability to cancel cell phone contracts, car leases, apartment leases without penalties or extra charges. Also, a maximum cap on interest rates for mortgages and credit cards at 6%

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Posted by Steve Maziarz - September 25, 2010 at 10:25 am

Categories: Patriots Postings, Special   Tags: , , , , , ,

In The Company Of Heroes

Arlington National Cemetery

It’s Memorial Day weekend here in the United States. For most it means nothing more than an extra day off from the daily grind.

I’d like to urge you, to take an hour or two over the course of this extended weekend to get back to the true meaning of this holiday. If only for a short while. This post will be sprinkled with many links to allow you to do just that.  For example, you can visit this site (http://www.cem.va.gov/) and click on the link, just below the picture “Find a 2010 Memorial Day Ceremony.” to find an official celebration near you.

When I was young, my grandparents and parents still called it by it’s original name: Decoration Day.  A day to honor the military dead and decorate their graves.

Indeed, at one cemetery especially dear to my heart, men and women have been working  hard this past week to decorate the graves of those who have served our country well.  That cemetery is Arlington National Cemetery,  just over the river from the center of Washington, DC.  When I lived in the area, it was a mandatory stop on Steve’s tour of DC. My eyes welled with tears at the thought that I was, indeed, walking on hallowed ground. I was in the company of many thousands of men and women who have paid the ultimate sacrifice so that I may enjoy the life I have.

Especially poignant was a trip to Tomb of The Unknown Soldiers where you watch, what is to me, one of the most impressive displays of military honor that I could ever hope to see.   That is the soldiers who guard the tomb, continuously. Night and Day. 24-7. Always. Through storms and cold and heat and blizzards and even a hurricane, the tomb remains guarded by these select few: The Tomb Guard. The best of the best. The cream of the crop. (It’s a good thing I’ve got a box of Kleenex by my side.)

In Washington, DC you’ll find many more monuments in tribute to our fallen heros. There’s the Korean War Memorial, The Wall (Vietnam Veterans Memorial) and (the newest) the World War II Memorial (which I have yet to see in person) to name a few.  Google any of these to learn more.

But, you don’t have to live or go to Washington, DC. There are “official” military cemeteries located throughout the United States. They’re called “National Cemeteries.” My friends near Wilmington, NC will find one there.  To find one in your state, or maybe in your own town, just click here. Or, just visit almost any cemetery this weekend and you’ll be sure to see many graves with an American Flag proudly waving. A token of appreciation for their service to our country.  Walk up to one of those graves and pause for a moment to say, “Thanks!”

There are two other organizations I’d like to introduce you to. That’s the Military Order of The Purple Heart and the Congressional Medal of Honor Society.  Their oldest living recipient, John Finn, died on Thursday at the age of 99. Visit them.  If you’re a web designer, you’ll find the Congressional Medal of Honor Society site appealing for design as well.

Better yet, why not expand your horizons and the meaning of this holiday to meet or honor a military hero.  They’re all around us. Walk in to any VFW or American Legion Post or Elks Lodge and you’ll likely find some elderly gentlemen (a few ladies, too) with some incredible stories to tell.  Perhaps you have one in your own family (Thanks Lester and Craig!).  Or maybe it’s your neighbor.  (Thank You Charlie!) I ask you to be especially cognizant, this weekend, for a chance to say “Thanks for your service!”

Have a safe holiday!

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Posted by Steve Maziarz - May 29, 2010 at 7:28 am

Categories: Patriots Postings, Special   Tags:

The Old Man

As I came out of the supermarket that sunny  day, pushing my cart of groceries towards my car, I saw an old man with the hood of his car up and a lady sitting inside the car, with the door open.  The old man was looking at the engine. I put my groceries away in my car and continued to watch the old gentleman from about twenty five feet away..

I saw a young man in his early twenties with a grocery bag in his arm, walking towards the old man. The old gentleman saw him coming too and took a few steps towards him. I saw the old gentleman point to his open hood and say something.  The young man put his grocery bag into what looked like a brand new Cadillac Escalade.

Then he turned back to the old man and I heard him yell at the old gentleman saying, ‘You shouldn’t even be allowed to drive a car at your age.’ And then with a wave of his hand, he got in his car and peeled rubber out of the parking lot.

I saw the old gentleman pull out his handkerchief and mop his brow as he went back to his car and again looked at the engine. He then went to his wife and spoke with her and appeared to tell her it would be okay..

I had seen enough and I approached the old man. He saw me coming and stood straight and as I got near him. I said, ‘Looks like you’re having a problem.’  He smiled sheepishly and quietly nodded his head.  I looked under the hood myself and knew that whatever the problem was, it was beyond me.  Looking around I saw a gas station up the road and told the old man that I would be right back…

I drove to the stationand went inside and saw three attendants working on cars. I approached one of them and related the problem the old man had with his car and offered to pay them if they could follow me back down and help him.

The old man had pushed the heavy car under the shade of a tree and appeared to be comforting his wife. When he saw us he straightened up and thanked me for my help. As the mechanics diagnosed the problem (overheated engine) I spoke with the old gentleman.

When I shook hands with him earlier, he had noticed my Marine Corps ring and had commented about it, telling me that he had been a Marine too. I nodded and asked the usual question, ‘What outfit did you serve with?’

He had mentioned that he served with the first Marine Division at Tarawa, Saipan, Iwo Jima and Guadalcanal …

Iwo Jima Memorial

Iwo Jima Memorial

He had hit all the big ones and retired from the Corps after the war was over. As we talked we heard the car engine come on and saw the mechanics lower the hood. They came over to us as the old man reached for his wallet, but was stopped by me and I told him I would just put the bill on my AAA card.

He still reached for the wallet and handed me a card that I assumed had his name and address on it and I stuck it in my pocket.. We all shook hands all around again and I said my goodbye’s to his wife.

I then told the two mechanics that I would follow them back up to the station. Once at the station I told them that they had interrupted their own jobs to come along with me and help the old man. I said I wanted to pay for the help, but they refused to charge me.

One of them pulled out a card from his pocket looking exactly like the card the old man had given to me. Both of the men told me then, that they were Marine Corps Reserves. Once again we shook hands all around and as I was leaving, one of them told me I should look at the card the old man had given to me. I said I would and drove off.

For some reason I had gone about two blocks when I pulled over and took the card out of my pocket and looked at it for a long, long time. The name of the old gentleman was on the card in golden leaf and under his name……….

Congressional Medal of Honor Society.’

I sat there motionless looking at the card and reading it over and over. I looked up from the card and smiled to no one but myself and marveled that on this day, four Marines had all come together, because one of us needed help. He was an old man all right, but it felt good to have stood next to greatness and courage and an honor to have been in his presence. Remember, OLD men like him gave you and I FREEDOM for America ..

Thanks to those who served….and those who supported them.
America is not at war. The U.S. Military is at war. America is at the Mall. If you don’t stand behind our troops, PLEASE feel free to stand in front of them!

Remember, Freedom isn’t Free, thousands have paid the price so you can enjoy what you have today.

GOD OUR FATHER, WALK THROUGH MY HOUSE AND TAKE AWAY ALL MY WORRIES; AND PLEASE WATCH OVER AND HEAL MY FAMILY AND PLEASE PROTECT OUR FREEDOMS AND WATCH OVER OUR TROOPS WHO ARE DEFENDING THOSE FREEDOMS.
AMEN!

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Posted by Steve Maziarz - February 20, 2010 at 11:45 am

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Question For Congress

I got this in my e-mail In Box this morning. … Here’s one question we should all be asking members of Congress in this election year:  “How come WE do not do it this way????”

The ‘Israelification’ of airports:

High security, little bother

By Cathal Kelly Staff Reporter

Originally Published On Wed Dec 30 2009 —

While North America’s airports groan under the weight of another sea-change in security protocols, one word keeps popping out of the mouths of experts: Israelification.  That is, how can we make our airports more like Israel’s, which deal with far greater terror threat with far less inconvenience.

“It is mindboggling for us Israelis to look at what happens in North America , because we went through this 50 years ago,” said Rafi Sela, the president of AR Challenges, a global transportation security consultancy. He’s worked with the RCMP, the U.S. Navy Seals and airports around the world. “Israelis, unlike Canadians and Americans, don’t take s— from anybody. When the security agency in Israel (the ISA) started to tighten security and we had to wait in line for — not for hours — but 30 or 40 minutes, all hell broke loose here. We said, ‘We’re not going to do this. You’re going to find a way that will take care of security without touching the efficiency of the airport.” That, in a nutshell is “Israelification” – a system that protects life and limb without annoying you to death.

Despite facing dozens of potential threats each day, the security set-up at Israel ‘s largest hub, Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion Airport, has not been breached since 2002, when a passenger mistakenly carried a handgun onto a flight. How do they manage that?

“The first thing you do is to look at who is coming into your airport,” said Sela. The first layer of actual security that greets travellers at Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion International Airport is a roadside check. All drivers are stopped and asked two questions: How are you? Where are you coming from? “Two benign questions. The questions aren’t important. The way people act when they answer them is,” Sela said.

Officers are looking for nervousness or other signs of “distress” — behavioural profiling. Sela rejects the argument that profiling is discriminatory. “The word ‘profiling’ is a political invention by people who don’t want to do security,” he said. “To us, it doesn’t matter if he’s black, white, young or old. It’s just his behaviour. So what kind of privacy am I really stepping on when I’m doing this?”

Once you’ve parked your car or gotten off your bus, you pass through the second and third security perimeters. Armed guards outside the terminal are trained to observe passengers as they move toward the doors, again looking for odd behaviour. At Ben Gurion’s half-dozen entrances, another layer of security are watching. At this point, some travellers will be randomly taken aside, and their person and their luggage run through a magnometer. “This is to see that you don’t have heavy metals on you or something that looks suspicious,” said Sela.

You are now in the terminal. As you approach your airline check-in desk, a trained interviewer takes your passport and ticket. They ask a series of questions: Who packed your luggage? Has it left your side? “The whole time, they are looking into your eyes — which is very embarrassing. But this is one of the ways they figure out if you are suspicious or not. It takes 20, 25 seconds,” said Sela. Lines are staggered. People are not allowed to bunch up into inviting targets for a bomber who has gotten this far.

At the check-in desk, your luggage is scanned immediately in a purpose-built area. Sela plays devil’s advocate — what if you have escaped the attention of the first four layers of security, and now try to pass a bag with a bomb in it? “I once put this question to Jacques Duchesneau (the former head of the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority): say there is a bag with play-doh in it and two pens stuck in the play-doh. That is ‘Bombs 101′ to a screener.. I asked Ducheneau, ‘What would you do?’ And he said, ‘Evacuate the terminal.’ And I said, ‘Oh. My. God.’

“Take Pearson. Do you know how many people are in the terminal at all times? Many thousands. Let’s say I’m (doing an evacuation) without panic — which will never happen. But let’s say this is the case. How long will it take? Nobody thought about it. I said, ‘Two days.’”

A screener at Ben-Gurion has a pair of better options. First, the screening area is surrounded by contoured, blast-proof glass that can contain the detonation of up to 100 kilos of plastic explosive. Only the few dozen people within the screening area need be removed, and only to a point a few metres away. Second, all the screening areas contain ‘bomb boxes’. If a screener spots a suspect bag, he/she is trained to pick it up and place it in the box, which is blast proof. A bomb squad arrives shortly and wheels the box away for further investigation.

“This is a very small simple example of how we can simply stop a problem that would cripple one of your airports,” Sela said. Five security layers down: you now finally arrive at the only one which Ben-Gurion Airport shares with Pearson — the body and hand-luggage check.

“But here it is done completely, absolutely 180 degrees differently than it is done in North America ,” Sela said. “First, it’s fast — there’s almost no line. That’s because they’re not looking for liquids, they’re not looking at your shoes. They’re not looking for everything they look for in North America . They just look at you,” said Sela. “Even today with the heightened security in North America , they will check your items to death. But they will never look at you, at how you behave. They will never look into your eyes … and that’s how you figure out the bad guys from the good guys.”

That’s the process — six layers, four hard, two soft. The goal at Ben-Gurion is to move fliers from the parking lot to the airport lounge in a maximum of 25 minutes.

This doesn’t begin to cover the off-site security net that failed so spectacularly in targeting would-be Flight 253 bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab — intelligence. In Israel , Sela said, a coordinated intelligence gathering operation produces a constantly evolving series of threat analyses and vulnerability studies. “There is absolutely no intelligence and threat analysis done in Canada or the United States ,” Sela said. “Absolutely none.” But even without the intelligence, Sela maintains, Abdulmutallab would not have gotten past Ben Gurion Airport’s behavioural profilers.

So. Eight years after 9/11, why are we still so reactive, so un-Israelified? Working hard to dampen his outrage, Sela first blames our leaders, and then ourselves.

“We have a saying in Hebrew that it’s much easier to look for a lost key under the light, than to look for the key where you actually lost it, because it’s dark over there.   That’s exactly how (North American airport security officials) act,” Sela said. “You can easily do what we do. You don’t have to replace anything. You have to add just a little bit — technology, training.. But you have to completely change the way you go about doing airport security. And that is something that the bureaucrats have a problem with. They are very well enclosed in their own concept.”

And rather than fear, he suggests that outrage would be a far more powerful spur to provoking that change.

“Do you know why Israelis are so calm? We have brutal terror attacks on our civilians and still, life in Israel is pretty good. The reason is that people trust their defence forces, their police, their response teams and the security agencies. They know they’re doing a good job.

You can’t say the same thing about Americans and Canadians. They don’t trust anybody,” Sela said. “But they say,… ‘ So far, so good  .’    Then if something happens, all hell breaks loose and you’ve spent eight hours in an airport. Which is ridiculous. Not justifiable. “But, what can you do?   Americans and Canadians are nice people and they will do anything because they were told to do so and because they don’t know any different.”

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Posted by Steve Maziarz - January 3, 2010 at 7:34 am

Categories: Patriots Postings   Tags:

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