Sabbatical week #5: What should Northfielders know about or discuss this week?

current eventsI’m on a working LoGro sabbatical for the month of August (and now into the first week of September), so it’s up to you to help keep each other informed about whatever you think is important and optionally discuss it in the comment thread attached to this blog post. 

Upcoming community events? Yep.

Local, state or national issues. You bet.

Links to interesting stuff? Sure.

Just make sure you abide by the Locally Grown Discussion Guidelines. I’ll be lurking.


  1. Well, what do people think about the possible closing of not just the local post office, but the national post office as is reported to possibly happen at the end of September, 2011? Will a private concern come in and take over and deliver mail in a more efficient and perhaps less often way, or will we all be forced into email distribution for all our important business?

    September 6, 2011
  2. john george said:

    Bright- Maybe the electronics industry is trying to stamp out regular mail.

    September 9, 2011
  3. Andy Kornkven said:

    What do local people think of the 9/11 attacks, on their ten year anniversary? How many still believe the official story of Arab hijackers; how many think it was a set up to get us into wars and initiate a police state? All the mainstream coverage seems to focus on the victims and their survivors. What about the alleged perpetrators? What about the three WTC buildings that collapsed?

    September 9, 2011
  4. john george said:

    Andy- Thanks for bringing that up. It is a very appropriate subject for this date. I, for one, do not believe the conspiracy theories. Knowing the radicalism of some extremist groups, it seems credible that one of them might do something like this. When a person does not put value on life, then killing people does not affect their conscience. Also, with the focus of some Islamic fringe groups on martyrdom, that adds some credibility for me. It is another day of infamy in our history. But, just as we rose above the attack on Pearl Harbor, it is encouraging that we are rising above this attack.

    September 9, 2011
  5. Phil Poyner said:

    “…we are rising above this attack.” In what ways are you seeing that manifested? In all honesty, I see very little evidence of it.

    September 9, 2011
  6. john george said:

    Phil- I guess I’m basing my opinion on how things are going in this country. For several months after the attack, there was a sober sense of cooperation between all the various factions that make up the American society. Within a year, we were back to our normal finger pointing and contention. Like a disfunctional family, sometimes chaos and discord are more “normal” than cooperation and calm. With the communication advances we have experienced in the last couple decades, events can be almost instantaneously known, so we tend to process things more quickly now than 70 years ago. The interesting thing is that with all this discord, things still seem to work. That is why I say we have risen above the attack.

    September 9, 2011
  7. Phil Poyner said:

    John, I’m afraid I don’t see that as an indication of us rising above anything. I see it more as a quick realization on the part of most people that the attacks and the aftermath weren’t going to directly affect many people (percentage-wise), and that it was OK to go back to “normal”. Heck, our government actually suggested that it was our patriotic duty to do so. But there’s an awful lot of evidence still out there of our collective fear…The Patriot Act, TSA, DHS, Gitmo, a couple of wars, just to name a few. My criteria for rising above the attacks is to end the fear and live as we did before the attacks, sending the message that terrorists tried to change our society…but failed!

    September 9, 2011
  8. Andy Kornkven said:


    I didn’t ask if we believe the conspiracy theories; I asked if we believe the official story. Remember, bogus conspiracy theories can be floated out there to give the official story credibility by comparison.

    P.S. historically speaking, Islamic fringe groups are not the only ones who’ve had a focus on martyrdom.

    September 9, 2011
  9. john george said:

    Phil- After Pearl Harbor, my folks told of a different attitude in people they knew during that era. There was a new realization that we could be attacked. This was a change in mindset for most people, and I think it became the new “normal.” After the Cold War, I think we sunk into an apathy that we probably wouldn’t be attacked again. 9/11 got our attention that we are vunerable in this age of easy global travel and communications. I call this the “new normal,” but I don’t see it paralyzing the populace. We are still trying to make a living and enjoy our families and leisure, but burnt once is learnt twice. We need to be innocent as doves but wise as serpents.

    Andy- I believe the “official” report. I chose not to live in fear of some subversion in our government, or that we could be attacked because of some internal 5th. column. I suppose it could be there, but I feel I have better things to do than live under some dread of the unknown. It has a lot to do with my Christianity and the trust in God that that faith has produced.

    September 9, 2011
  10. john george said:

    Phil- I forgot to add that in the last days, there will be wars and rumors of wars. This just intensifies my hope in the second coming of Jesus. How great that would be to experience in my life on Earth, but I know I will be around for it, either in this life or the next.

    September 9, 2011
  11. Phil Poyner said:

    Well John, at least these wars are bringing hope to someone…

    September 9, 2011
  12. Curt Benson said:

    John, I’d be reluctant to rely on “wars and rumors of war” to predict the “last days”.

    Googling yields dozens of lists of wars by date. One thing is certain, we have not experienced a shortage of wars in human history. For example, this list has sixteen pages of wars dated from 1816 to 2007:

    Wikipedia has list of wars starting from 2350 BC. You’ll get carpal tunnel before you finish scrolling through the lists on this entry:

    September 9, 2011
  13. john george said:

    Phil- My hope is not in the wars. It is in the word of God. A person has to consider the whole counsel of God, not just a few isolated verses.

    September 9, 2011
  14. john george said:

    Curt- See my answer to Phil in 3.1.

    September 9, 2011
  15. Griff Wigley said:

    I’m back after 6 days on North Shore, mainly camping at Split Rock Lighthouse State Park, cart-in site #16, which, according to this reviewer:

    Site 16 could be the most scenic camping site in Minnesota, with a dead-on view of the lighthouse from your own bench perched at the edge of the cliff (and from the door of your tent). It’s also the best site if you’re camping with friends; it shares a spur from the trail with No. 17, which has a view nearly as good. The others are pretty darn good, too; they’re all cart-in sites for tent campers.

    Fabulous spot, fabulous weather, fabulous time.
    I’m at a conference all day today and have a family wingding tomorrow but will be catching up over the next few days, albeit slowly.

    September 10, 2011
  16. kiffi summa said:

    Since religion seems to be such a conversation starter on this blog, maybe the subject for this week should be absence of clergy at yesterday’s Ground Zero memorial service for the families of the survivors.

    Browse around some news sites, and you will see that religious conservatives are questioning this absence, stating that we are not a secular nation, we are not France !!! (whatever that means; I think we ‘grow’ some pretty good wines!), and other comments that generally bemoan the absence of clergy as an extreme oversight by NYC’s Mayor Bloomberg, and other memorial service planners.

    Wha’d’ya think?

    September 12, 2011
  17. kiffi summa said:

    …or maybe we should discuss what kind of people resoundingly cheer (well, we know it was a Tea Party audience) at last night’s Republican debate, when it is suggested by speakers that if a person cannot afford medical care they should be allowed to die because obviously they have not taken enough responsibility to be allowed the support of Medicare/medicaid…

    September 13, 2011
  18. Bruce Morlan said:

    As a former missile launch officer (341st SMW, 12SMS) I sat with my fellow officers waiting for orders that even the atheists prayed would never come. I would have been very disturbed if I had believed that my superiors were operating out of a mythological belief in the “end times”. I prefer my “end times” stories to be fantasies from Hollywood rather than delusions of the leadership. People who listen to the counsel of their myths too strongly are precisely the ones who will drive airplanes into buildings or societies into the abyss.

    September 18, 2011

Leave a Reply