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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

The signs of changing seasons

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Joe Sullivan
Seasons come and go, and six days into 2012 we already have a sense of how the seasons bring change. And, like all seasons, we expect familiarity. Soon, daffodil shoots will poke up through the ground, signaling the approach of spring, my favorite season. Meanwhile, we can see signs of other seasons ending and beginning as the new year takes hold.

* The football season: Some professional teams have a few games left leading up to this year's Super Bowl. Mercifully, the Rams season is over. The team will have a new coach when the new football season rolls around later this year.

* The political season: Folks in Iowa have been engaged in that state's first-in-the-nation presidential caucus process for weeks. This week gave us the results of the only poll that really counts, the one that indicates who the true front-runners for the Republican nomination are. All the polls leading up to Tuesday's caucuses were guesses at best since so many Iowa Republicans remained undecided until the last minute.

There is plenty of political nonsense ahead as the nation moves toward a presidential election in November. Iowans have already been bombarded by endless negative political TV ads. The rest of us will get our fill before the political season ends.

* The legislative season: The new session of the Missouri Legislature started this week. Heading the list of major decisions facing our representatives and senators is how to balance the state budget.

How spending is adjusted to fit the state's anticipated revenue stream is crucial, which begs the question: Why didn't legislators put an end to the meaningless presidential primary that will cost millions of dollars?

There are going to be many more tough issues like that. Are the legislators up to the task?

* The gridlock-in-Washington season: This season continues with every important member of the House and Senate decrying the political hogwash while dripping in political hog doo-doo. Do these folks ever listen to themselves? Surely, if they did, they would be ashamed.

If it were in my power, I would get in touch with the mothers of every elected official in the U.S. Capitol and ask them to have a word -- or two -- with their sons and daughters. It is my firm belief that the mothers of this nation could solve just about every problem we face, and they would do it in short order.

Perhaps it would not be too much to suggest to our representatives and senators to apply this simple test to every vote they cast: What would Mom think?

Hmm. Let's give them all bracelets that say "WWMT?"

* The deer season: I think one of the most important decisions that will be made in Cape Girardeau this year is the one about controlling the growing deer population that, in my opinion, is a menace.

The plain truth is, however, that killing deer inside the city simply opens up habitat for more deer to move in. I know. I tried reducing the squirrel population in my yard. Result: More squirrels than before.

To reduce the deer population in the city means eliminating the deer outside the city, and the powers that be don't have the guts to reintroduce mountain lions like they did with elk.

Joe Sullivan is the retired editor of the Southeast Missourian.

R. Joe Sullivan
R. Joe Sullivan