Archive for November 3rd, 2008

It’s official: just one day left until the political ads stop clogging up the airwaves!  As the presidential candidates dart across several states arguing that victory is at hand it’s only hours “My friends”, until we return to the endless barrage of Elvis crooning Viva Viagra and the talking heads covering the O.J. story, or what Britney revealed or the hunt for Florida toddler Caylee or…anti-sagging-pants mandates and city ordinances!

It has been the longest and most expensive presidential contest ever – maybe the best and worst of times – but, no matter who you voted for the winner of the election will inherit (in no particular order):

  1. 46M uninsured Americans (15% of the U.S. population)
  2. Unfinished construction of the 700 mile, $49B U.S. – Mexico border fence
  3. Home foreclosure at an all time high and a 23 year high of late mortgage payments
  4. 140,000 troops serving in Iraq and 30,000 in Afghanistan
  5. 26 states with constitutional amendments banning same-sex marriage and 2 (MA. and CA.) that don’t
  6. Oil consumption at 20.7M barrels per day – U.S. produces 8.5M barrels per day
  7. Customs and Border Protection processes over 1M passengers, 70K containers and 300K air, sea, and land vehicles per day
  8. TSA screens 2M passengers and nearly the same number of pieces of checked luggage per day
  9. Citizenship and Immigration Services conducts on average of 135K national security background checks per day
  10. NAFTA trade barriers which hurt Harley-Davidson

Frankly I’m feeling like a good neighbor.  I got involved, got connected, took local action with others in the community and voted.  I hope you do too.

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Many people confuse Memorial Day and Veterans Day.  Do you know the difference?  Memorial Day is a day for remembering and honoring those who died serving their country.  On Veterans Day we thank and honor those who served in the military.

I’m grateful to our Veterans who served in the military and made tremendous sacrifices to protect our freedom.  On November 11th the city of Albany, OR holds a Veterans Day Parade which is one of the largest west of the Mississippi River.  Members of the OVMA and Hub City ABATE are helping coordinate various motorcycle groups that plan to ride in the event.  It’s an open event for all motorcycle riders, however, due to the large number of riders any individual groups should register so the coordinators can plan accordingly. 

Albany, OR

Albany, OR

If you’re a solo rider then it’s suggested that you join/stage with other groups or visit the OMRF site and determine the best method of participation.

For those who plan to arrive early in Albany there are a couple of waiting area choices:

  1. United Freedom Riders (UFR) will host coffee and donuts at Ted and Rhonda’s house (next to the Albany H-D dealership) starting at 8:00am.
  2. Hub City ABATE and others are planning to meet at: the Front Street Bar and Grill (2300 Front Ave NE) who will be serving a $5 biscuit/gravy and coffee breakfast for all the riders. (See Map)
  3. Or, you can go straight to the staging area under the overpass to downtown (See Map).

Do you know a Veteran?  Maybe it’s your mother, father, sister, brother cousin or a teacher.  You can be very proud of them as many have given much to keep us safe and free.  Of the 25 million living veterans, most (75%) served during a war or an official period of hostility. More information on Veterans can be obtained at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs or see how the White House honors Veterans.

Have you thanked a veteran today?

UPDATE: November 14, 2008 – more than 40,000 spectators and participants attended the Albany Veterans Parade.  See photos, video and report by Tim King (Salem News) HERE.

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