Curtis Dahlgren
"Great Leaping Lizards!": Post-turtles, boiling frogs, and flying hogs!
By Curtis Dahlgren
April 4, 2009

"It is peculiarly fit for us to recognize the hand of God in this terrible visitation, and in sorrowful remembrance of our own faults and crimes as a nation and as individuals, to humble ourselves before Him, and to pray for His mercy — to pray that we may be spared further punishment . . " — Abraham Lincoln (1861)

"TERRIBLE" IS PROBABLY THE MOST FITTING WORD TO DESCRIBE THE WEEK JUST PAST. The "crazy-headlines-of-the-week" had a bumper crop:

- "Supreme Court unanimously decrees ban on 'gay marriage' unconstitutional, in IOWA!" [but nationalizing the banks and auto companies is "CONSTITUTIONAL"?]

- "Dean of Episcopal Divinity School, Katherine Ragsdale, calls abortion a blessing." [eh?]

- "Black market and smuggling of detergents in the Northwest" [Cascade outlawed]

- "Condom distribution at church okayed" [topping that one is hard]

- "World watches Obama, Sarkozy spouses; forget the husbands" [pop culture, gone wild]

- "Obama bows to Saudi king; Michelle Obama touches Queen Elizabeth" [a no-no]

- "Florida woman calls 911; locked inside car" [probably an Obama voter]

- "University of California San Diego sends congrats to 29,000 rejects" [Notre Dame should have been the university doing that one]

- "Rocket fuel chemical found in baby formula" [rocket scientists doing post-birth abortions now?]

- "At least 44 people killed in U.S. binge-shootings in one month" [number of solo-murders not available]

- "War on terror now called 'Overseas Contingency Operation'" [that solves that one]

- "White House plans 'controlled bankruptcy' of General Motors [dittoes, but -]

- "Obama bans Chevrolet and Dodge from NASCAR" [an April Fools joke, but(?)-]

- "Detroit Public Schools 'overspent' 166 million dollars" [and for what? No joke!]

- "White House promises billions for school construction; Detroit closing 50 schools" [and the teachers say abortion is a blessing!]

- "New Yankee Stadium has some seats that sell for $2,625 a game" [only a government employee could afford such extravagance]

- "Significant weekend snowfall forecast for Midwest" [I'm still putting out salt to try to thaw out my back gate ("climate change" or Global Warming?)]

"LOOKING OUT MY BACK DOOR," an old hippie song went, but did they ever have visions of this? This snow that's coming isn't after a typical spring warm-up. Some of the snow that fell last November hasn't melted yet. The only thing this weather is good for is making maple syrup in April — sunny days and freezing nights. I had to scrape frost off my windshield this week. People are still wearing their winter coats in the U.P. I can see an occasional chunk of ice floating by on the river.

Speaking of the global warming "crisis," two weeks ago, on the first day of spring, a front-page headline in the Detroit "Free" Press read:

"FUEL-EFFICIENCY MYTH: Model T doesn't best SUVs, even if Obama says so"! [The Tin Lizzie got 15 mpg, compared to almost 19 mpg for a typical SUV, but don't confuse the environmentalists with facts!]

And speaking of "efficiency," the Congress just passed a three-and-one-half Trillion Dollar budget. Just the facts, ma'am! But back to the column:


1) Most of the members of the majority party in Congress must be post-turtles. They can't possibly have gotten to where they are on their own competence. "Somebody" must have put them up there. Even a fence post has more intelligence. It keeps its feet firmly stuck on the ground.

2) "When pigs fly." That's when they're going to balance the federal budget (or even cut it in "half" — as the White House "promises"). Just remember that the "pie" that the Democrats promise to slice up and redistribute is pie in the sky (without diamonds).

3) The "boiling frogs" are the American citizens, of course, but we should be thankful to John Edwards for inventing the phrase "Two Americas." In one America, the people don't have the slightest clue that they are being boiled alive, but in the other America, we are screaming at the top of our lungs — STOP! [special kudos to Paul Ryan]


The sixty-year-old hippies are desperately trying to remember the spirit of Woodstock on its 40th anniversary. To say they are "celebrating" it would be an exaggeration. Just ask the people of Binghampton, New York. Or the Oakland Police Department.

Some of the hippies are still saying that if there were a God, He wouldn't allow the world to be in such a mess (and those are the ones in Congress and the White House). But if there "is" no God, they'd better start praying that there IS ONE. Seek the Lord while He may be found, because if you never do, you'll never find Him.

Mentioning the name of the Lord is verboten according to some of those in the White House (although Allah is "okay"). In Illinois, private Christian high schools are verboten from making religion-related announcements over the public address system during inter-scholastic sporting events. And it's all downhill from there.

P.S. Congratulations, speaking of sports, to Tom Izzo from the Upper Peninsula, and the Spartans, for making the Final Four (especially to Goran Suton, from Sarajevo).

The grateful Suton says, "That's the beauty of America. You can fit in no matter where you came from, what religion you are, you don't have to worry about what you're going to say or what holidays you celebrate."

[Unless you're a radio talk show host, or a Christian in California, I might add.]

When Suton's family returned to their home in Sarajevo, the found the first floor burned out and the third floor missing most of its roof. So they lived on the second floor.

I guess I could conclude this column now by saying that — no matter what you've "lost" in the past week, month, or year — be thankful for what you have left. I've seen the cabin where Abraham Lincoln spent most of his boyhood. It ain't much, that's for sure!

If the current President wants to emulate Abe, he could start by issuing a "National Day of Prayer and Fasting" — instead of having his colleagues in the ACLU trying to outlaw the National Day of Prayer!

Lincoln wasn't a friend of mine (I'm not that old), but I did go to a one-room country school for 8 years and 6 weeks of kindergarten (during which we learned how to read). Of his schoolhouse, Lincoln said:

"We had no reading books or grammars, and all our reading was done from the Bible."
[Abraham Lincoln: Theologian of American Anguish, by Elton Trueblood]

I hope they're reading this at the White House, even though my readership is pathetic. I didn't say you're pathetic; I mean my readership stats are pathetic compared to what they ought to be.

PPS: For the John Stuart Mill column-of-the-week, my decision is a tie between two writers who are more widely-read than I am:

Charles Krauthammer's column from Friday, April 3, 2009 and:

"The illegal, Unconstitutional Bush-Obama Auto Bailout," by Terence Jeffrey.

Both columns deal with "constitutionality," a subject that the Left takes seriously only if it involves "gay marriage" or banning prayers. Our public servants take an oath to defend "the Constitution of the United States," but I suspect that it's a subject to "abstract" for even them to grasp. However, as a practical matter, let's put it this way:

"Who's going to bail out Uncle Sam, if God is dead?"

There are oh so many excellent columns out there, but I also want to mention Ann Coulter's "Why is Rick Wagoner fired and Nancy Pelosi still working?"

And I hate to do this, but here's a plug for my own new book, "Massey-Harris 101: A Letter to Generations X, Y, and Z; Quotations for the Ages" ( Every American opinion leader should read it before the "celebration" of the 40th anniversary of Woodstock.

© Curtis Dahlgren


The views expressed by RenewAmerica columnists are their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of RenewAmerica or its affiliates.
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Curtis Dahlgren

Curtis Dahlgren is semi-retired in southern Wisconsin, and is the author of "Massey-Harris 101." His career has had some rough similarities to one of his favorite writers, Ferrar Fenton... (more)


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