Dishonest Politicians?

Is it just me? This time of year, we are inundated with political ads. In Denver, we just finished the primary race. What I don’t understand is this. How can two candidates of the same party, who have been mudslinging for the past several months, turn around after the primary is over and stand side-by-side with the loser supporting the winner? Shouldn’t we be believing candidate B’s ads that ran just last week saying that candidate A is a dishonest low-life? Or should we be believing what candidate B is saying now, which is that candidate A is the best choice for the elections in November? Which lie are we supposed to believe?

“How can you tell when a politician is lying? His lips are moving.”

Our Pledge of Allegiance

I saw this video on YouTube. It’s a great use of four minutes of your day.

Red Skelton's Pledge of Allegiance, from his television show in 1969.

Here is a transcription of the video:

I remember a teacher that I had. Now, I went through the seventh grade. I left home when I was 10 years old because I was hungry. This is true. I’d work in the summer and go to school in the winter. But I had this one teacher, it was the principal of the Harrison School in Vinsennes, Indiana. To me, this was the greatest teacher, a real sage of my time, any how. He had such wisdom. And we were all reciting The Pledge of Allegiance one day, and he walked over, this little old teacher. Mr. Lasswell was his name.

He says, “I’ve been listening to you boys and girls recite The Pledge of Allegiance all semester. And it seems as though it’s becoming monotonous to you. If I may, may I recite it and try to explain to you the meaning of each word.

“I – me. An individual. A committee of one.

“Pledge – dedicate all of my worldly goods to give without self-pity.

“Allegiance – my love and my devotion.

“To the flag – our standard. Old Glory. A symbol of freedom. Wherever she waves, there’s respect, because your loyalty has given her a dignity that shouts ‘Freedom is everybody’s job!’

“United – that means that we have all come together.

“States – individual communities that have united into 48 great states. Forty-eight individual communities with pride and dignity and purpose. All divided with imaginary boundaries, yet united to a common purpose, and that’s love for country.

“And to the republic – republic. A state in which sovereign power is invested in representatives chosen by the people to govern. And government is the people. And it’s from the people to the leaders, not from the leaders to the people.

“For which it stands…one nation. One nation, meaning, so blessed by God.

“Indivisible – incapable of being divided.

“With liberty – which is freedom. The right of power to live one’s own life, without threats, fear, or some sort of retaliation.

“And justice – the principal or quality of dealing fairly with others.

“For all. For all. Which means, boys and girls, it’s as much your country as it is mine.

“And now, boys and girls, let me hear you recite The Pledge of Allegiance.

“I pledge allegiance to the flag of The United States of America. And to the republic, for which it stands. One nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

Since I was a small boy, two states have been added to our country, and two words have been added to The Pledge of Allegiance. “Under God.” Wouldn’t it be a pity if someone said ‘That is a prayer’ and that would be eliminated from schools, too?”

PHP/MySQL Output In Two Columns, Newspaper Style

OK – here’s another dilemma that I searched the web high and low for, and couldn’t find a solution, so I made it myself.

My dilemma was that I wanted to query a MySQL table and write the first half of the output in one column, and the second half in an adjacent column. For example, say my table has 65 records in it – I want to print records 1-33 in the first column, and 34-65 in the second column. Everything I found had the output with all odd numbered records in the first column and all the even numbered records in the second column. Like:

1 2
3 4
5 6

I wanted:

1 4
2 5
3 6

Here’s how I wrote the code:

echo(“<table cols=3 border=0>\n”); // create main container table
echo(“<tr><td valign=’top’>\n”);
$sql=mysql_query(“SELECT blah1,blah2 FROM blah3 ORDER BY blah1″);
$howmany=mysql_num_rows($sql);
$i=0;
$half=$howmany/2;
$leftover=$howmany%2;
if ( $leftover == 1 )
$half+= 0.5;
echo(” <table cols=1 border=0>\n”); // create table within the outer table left-hand cell
while ($result=mysql_fetch_array($sql)) {
$blah1=stripslashes($result[‘blah1’]);
$blah2=stripslashes($result[‘blah2’]);
if ( $i >= $half ) {
echo(“</table>\n”); // close the left-hand cell table
echo(“</td><td width=25> </td><td valign=’top’>\n”); // close the outer left-hand cell, put in a filler cell for space, and open the outer right-hand cell
echo(“<table cols=1 border=0>\n”); // create table within the outer table right-hand cell
$half=999999999; // make sure half will now always be greater than $i
}
echo(” <tr><td>$blah1</td></tr>\n”);
$i++;
}
echo(” </table>\n”); // close table within the outer table righ-hand cell
echo(“</td></tr>\n”);
echo(” </table>\n”); // close outer container table

Note that if you copy/paste this code, WordPress likes to make “smart quotes” with the left hand quote symbol being different from the right hand quote symbol. Make sure all your double quotes are really double quotes and single quotes are really single quotes.