Chest Hair

Sunday, June 23, 2013
My sister and I grew up listening to the wisdom of country people. Many family members on maternal and paternal sides of the family were farmers, small shop keepers, small business people in general, with a sprinkling of cops and firemen. We grew up listening to sagacious comments such as "haste makes waste" and "there's never time enough to do it right the first time, but always time to do it over."

When I grew up, sort of, got out of the service and had a real job, the old man who owned the company grew up a farm boy from Bavaria who'd been a Sergeant in the German Army, a tank commander during the second War To End All Wars.
Dick Frosch is no longer with us but I've thought about him frequently lately, especially some of those stories he'd tell of his younger days... and that he'd learned to always be methodical and deliberate about everything, mindful of any potential consequences of his actions.

But Dick didn't always follow his own advice, like the day I was discussing a circuit design for a rather challenging customer request with our chief engineer. He walked up behind and grabbed a hand full of my chest hair, all 7 of them, saying "You thought it was funny the other day when (his daughter) did this to me out in the shop, eh?" And as he was talking I reached behind, grabbed a handful of what ever tender body parts were available, and then we were both standing there on tippy-toes screaming "turn loose, turn loose" in high pitched voices. Since I had the upper hand, so to speak, he had to let go first and then had to promise he wouldn't do anything like that ever again, to anyone. And he didn't, at least not by surprise.

Scroll forward about 20 years. Sitting with Jack Sharp, late Tennessee State Representative from East Ridge and thankfully no kin to The Commish, in his Nashville office I was whining about how difficult it was to see good legislation passed into law. He smiled. The more I whined the bigger his smile got until he commented "Roy, we have a system that's very hard to change. If you stop and think about that a minute, would we really want it to be any other way?"

I really hate when somebody puts the brakes on my whining with simple logic and reasoning.

Let's think about that for just a moment. What happens when we get an oil change, then the technician gets in a hurry and forgets to replace the drain plug, the dipstick or the oil filler cap? Oops. Or if a plumber forgets to put the clean-out plug back in the sewer line when he's done... eeeww, stinky.

When judges and law enforcement personnel ignore infractions of the law, say burglaries or assaults, what happens then?

So let's extend that again, to legislation and regulation.

What are we seeing the past few years? Every time there's something in the news, a shooting or a baby who gets pinched in a crib or a bombing, there's a call for new laws to keep that incident from ever happening again. Or so we're told. Chrysler this week received a demand to recall 2.7 million vehicles because some bureaucrat decided there are too many highway deaths from rear end collisions that resulted in fires. This, for 51 deaths over model years 1993 through 2008 and generally attributed to an aftermarket trailer hitch. What happened to owner liability for modifying factory standard products? There are more United States, the greatest nation to ever grace the face of Planet Terra, citizens killed every week (to the tune of about 13 per day) by illegal aliens on our highways.

Every time there's a shooting by some deranged person, who probably didn't obtain the weapon legally anyway, there's a call for decent, law abiding citizens to hand over more of their rights.

Now comes Tennessee's own Senator Corker, Bob to those who want to feel important. We have an illegal alien problem, that's for sure. And what does he do? He walks right into the hype created by those who would pass new law instead of just enforcing what's already in place.

Open borders were supposed to have been shut back in1986. Fences were mandated again in 1993. Employers hire illegals to save a few bucks. Employers are supposed to check all new hires for citizenship status, if they owe back child support too. Welfare bureaucracies not only don't check citizenship status, they advertise for new enrollees... using our tax dollars to do it. On and on ad infinitum the list of current infractions of the law go, law that isn't enforced.

And what does our Homie, Senator Corker, do? He steps right in presenting new law... 1,000 pages of it... and gives the rest of the Senate 75 hours to read and analyze it to ensure there are no unintended consequences our children and grandchildren will have to contend with.

Well, isn't that special. He's steppin' in something all right.

"Hurry up, gang, we have to pass this so we can go on vacation!" Is that all real, live, tax paying and sometimes voting citizens are worth... a wallet?

What's the hurry?

Why aren't we blistering the wallets of employers who use illegal alien labor? Why aren't we asking for immigration status in hospital emergency rooms? Why aren't we doing the same in the welfare office? Or anywhere else? Why aren't cops allowed to inquire about immigration status of criminals or even mere violators of our traffic laws?

What's the hurry about implementing new law when the old law isn't being enforced?

Isn't it interesting that we're told there are 27 million Americans, United States Citizens, who're unemployed but we still have to give 20 million criminals, illegal aliens who broke our law crossing our borders illegally in the first place, jobs?

We're told illegals do work Americans won't. Maybe that's because welfare's too lucrative, but a subject for another day. The fact still remains there are 27 million citizens who are employable but unemployed while our lawmakers want to legalize 20 million law breakers.

Another question is this; why are other elected officials, from the dog catcher on up, not questioning this in public? Is it because they're afraid the favor might be returned in kind? Where's Congressman Chuck, still hiding? Congressman DeJarlais? Senator Alexander? The rest? It's a municipal and County issue too, don't you know.

Life could be so simple, but we make it complex don't we. Our legislators make their own lives much too complex by adding gazillions of amendments to bills trying to buy the votes of others, submitting legislation that's only a repeat of what's already law, and forgetting their place while (figuratively) yanking on the chest hair of their constituents, don't they.

It's going to be interesting to see who's standing on tippy-toes come election time screaming "turn loose, turn loose"... current elected officials or those who follow the advice of Paul Simon:

Slow down, you move too fast
You got to make the morning last
Just kicking down the cobble stones
Looking for fun and feelin' groovy

While we work to earn our own way instead of sucking our existence from others.

One thing's for sure. My life would be a whole lot simpler if not for laundry, mowing grass, and picking up after heathern dogs who won't put their toys away. I wonder if chocolate will make that feel better. It's worth a try.

Royce Burrage, Jr.


Lessons From My Dad, Marty Haynes

Enough is enough. I have heard Marty Haynes’ name drug through the mud for far too long. Let me tell you a few things that I have learned from my father, that now as a family man myself I realize are far more important than anything else.  1. Be Faithful in your Service- My dad learned this trait from my grandparents, Dub and Norma Haynes- Mr. and Mrs. Hixson High 1951, ... (click for more)

TVA Coal Reductions Could Come With High Price Tag

Reliable, low-cost electricity has always been the backbone of the Tennessee Valley economy. Low-cost power from the Tennessee Valley Authority, generated by a balanced mix of coal, natural gas and nuclear, drives the valley’s manufacturing economy and makes the region an attractive destination for business. In the process, Tennessee has developed the fourth largest automotive manufacturing ... (click for more)

Female, 18, Shot On South Seminole Early Saturday Morning

An 18-year-old female was shot in the leg on South Seminole early Saturday morning. Chattanooga Police responded to the 200 block of South Seminole after a report of a shooting. There police located one victim suffering from a single, non-life threatening gunshot wound. T he victim, Cierra L Kirksey, was inside her home when the shooting occurred. The suspect was ... (click for more)

Almost $5 Million In Donations Received For Organ Donor Awareness Since Program Began

Hamilton County Clerk Bill Knowles, one of the founding board members of the Tennessee County Clerks Organ Donor Awareness Foundation, announce d that in 2015  the  95 Tennessee County Clerk offices marked a milestone of receiving almost $5 million in donations since its formation in 1996. Mr. Knowles said,  “Over  the years  Hamilton County  consistently ... (click for more)

Near-Perfect Red Bank Leads Region 2-A/AA Wrestling

High school wrestling coaches are always looking for perfection and Red Bank's Shane Turner almost got it Friday night in the opening day of the Region 2-A/AA tournament at Hixson Middle School. The Lions advanced all 14 of their wrestlers to Saturday morning's championship semifinal round and lead the 14-team field with 52 points. Hixson advanced 10 to the semis and hold ... (click for more)

Baylor Has Six, No.1 Seeds For D-II Region Wrestling Meet

Led by three-time state champions Michael Murphy (145) and Ryan Parker (195), Baylor has six No.1 seeds for today’s TSSAA D-II East/Middle Region individual wrestling tournament at Baylor. McCallie has four top seeds, while MBA has three and BGA has one. Today’s Region: The tournament starts at 10 a.m. in Duke Arena with the top four in each weight class advancing to next ... (click for more)