The Ole Seagull


An Ole Seagull’s “Separation of Church and State 101”

Posted in General,Government,Opinion by The Ole Seagull on the October 25th, 2009

From the get-go, the Ole Seagull must state his basic belief that the “created” have no power or authority to change the laws of the “Creator.” The created either follow the laws of the Creator or don’t and must live with the result(s) of their decision.

Obviously, who or what the “Creator” is plays a critical role. To an Ole Seagull, even one in the winter of his years and with all his glaring faults, the answer is contained within the words, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” That “Creator” is God.

“Come on Seagull, do you really believe that God created everything?” Absolutely! Through the spring, summer, fall, and into the winter of his years, from the sun coming up every morning to its setting every evening, and all that naturally transpires in between, he has observed an orderliness to the universe that continually testifies to the certainty of God’s creation and His blessing.

“Next you’re going to tell us that you believe that “the Lord God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.” From an Ole Seagull’s perspective it sure beats the alternative of a Godless “inbreeding monkey evolution” left to itself without God’s hand to direct it.

“Well, God didn’t create this country?” Actually He did. Relatively speaking, it just took a “few years” for Columbus, to “discover” that which God had created and which, at the time of his discovery, was occupied by “Native Americans” who had discovered it centuries before.

“Come on Seagull, what I meant is that God didn’t fight the Revolutionary War which established us as an independent nation or write the U.S. Constitution upon which its government is based.” As an Ole Seagull understands it, that war like all others before it and since, was fought by beings that God created as they exercised their option of free choice. In like manner the U.S. Constitution was written.
“If the U.S. Constitution, the document upon which our government is based, says there should be no prayer in schools, no nativity scenes on public property, that the Ten Commandments cannot be displayed in public buildings, Christmas should be called “Winter Solstice,” etc., shouldn’t that be the law of the land?” Absolutely, and if a frog had wings it should be able to fly but a frog doesn’t have wings and the Constitution contains no such language!

“Gotcha there Seagull, how about the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution which says, among other things, ‘Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.’ ” Are we talking about the same First Amendment that Congress proposed, as part of the Bill of Rights on September 25, 1789? “That’s the one.” Was that same Congress still in session, not two months later, on November 16, 1789? “Sure it was.  Why?”

On November 16, 1789, the First President of the United States, George Washington, issued a Thanksgiving Proclamation.  In that proclamation he stated, “Whereas it is the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly to implore His protection and favor and whereas both Houses of Congress have by their joint committee requested me to ‘recommend to the People of the United States a day of public thanks-giving and prayer to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many single favors of Almighty God, especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness.’”

Can any reasonably thinking person really believe that the same Congress that encouraged the “people of the United States” to acknowledge “with grateful hearts the many single favors of Almighty God,” intended that the First Amendment they had proposed, not two months prior, be used as a tool to take prayer out of schools, remove the ten commandments from the walls of all public buildings etc.? It flies in the face of logic.

“Well, the Supreme Court of the United States says it does!” Is that the same “Supreme Court” that issued the Dred Scott Decision? “I guess so. What was that decision about?” The fallibility of mans law, the imperfection of those who interpret it, and a testimony to what can happen when the created change the laws of the Creator.

Things haven’t changed much since Noah built the Ark

Posted in General,Opinion by The Ole Seagull on the October 18th, 2009

The Ole Seagull was blessed to see one of Branson’s many live shows, “Noah the Musical,” at the fabulous Sight & Sound Theatre, the afternoon of October 16. Now he might not go to church every week, but he knows the Noah story, respects Noah’s God and humbly accepts the salvation from his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, the Son of the Living God.

At the start of the show the audience is told that it is a fictional presentation of a factual event but, there is nothing fictional about the main thrust of the show and why Noah was doing what he was doing. God said to Noah, “The end of all flesh has come before Me; for the earth is filled with violence because of them; and behold, I am about to destroy them with the earth.” He told Noah to build an Ark, how to do it and what to put on it and Scripture records “Thus Noah did; according to all that God had commanded him, so he did.”

“Noah the Musical” dramatically illustrates the shows interpretation of ways in which the people of the time had separated themselves from God and worshipped their own God and the way of life he provided. Why he even built a tower the people could go into to protect themselves in the case Noah was right and the waters rose. The factual truth that resonates throughout was that God’s people had chosen to forsake Him and His ways for something else.

As the Ole Seagull sat there and watched how far the people of that day had turned from God and His ways and thought about today and how far our Nation has drifted down that same path. The government will take care of us, we have to take prayer out of the schools and Christmas out of anything that can be remotely construed to be governmental because of the U.S. Constitution and its alleged separation of Church and can worship God and practice our faith as long as it is socially acceptable.

It has been said that one woman got prayer out of the schools and that one man is trying to get “Under God” out of the Pledge of Allegiance and “In God We Trust” removed from out money. In an Ole Seagull’s opinion, prayer is out of our schools and, if “God” is taken out of the pledge and off our currency it will not be because of the action of one person it will be because of the inaction of millions of Gods people who simply stood by and let it happen.

It almost makes the Ole Seagull sick when people say, “Oh well what can you do, it’s what the U.S. Constitution says.” It’s not what the constitution says, it is an interpretation of what the federal judiciary says it says, and regardless, as a general rule, the created, forefathers and judges included, cannot change the laws of the Creator.

Since the days of Moses, God’s law has said, “You shall have no other god before me,” “You shall not make for yourself an idol” and “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house ….or anything that belongs to your neighbor.” Yet today it seems that God’s people have put the constitution before God and are building a whole society based on coveting and actually taking from their neighbors that which they have earned and giving it to themselves in benefits they have not earned.

As a nation, when was America the most successful? Was it when God, His precepts and power were an integral part of our daily lives from both a national and a personal perspective? Or, is it now when seemingly as a nation, and in a lot of cases from a personal perspective, the U.S. Constitution and the Federal government has been substituted for the precepts and power of God?

WOW, question the Branson Airport and it’s a “smack down?”

Posted in Branson,Opinion by The Ole Seagull on the October 11th, 2009

To an Ole Seagull Branson Airport is only as important as the number of new visitors it brings to Branson or the services it provides to the residents of our area. He would also point out that the only value to his columns, if any, is the extent to which it causes people to think about the issues raised not whether or not his position is correct because, at the end of the day, his position is but that of a tired old man in the winter of his years.

Last week’s column contained a section entitled “WOW, do Branson Airport Visitors Spend More?” In its entirety it said, “Those attending the annual meeting of the Branson Lakes Area Tourism Community Enhancement District on Sep. 24 were given information by Branson Lakes/Lakes Area Convention and Visitors Bureau that the average spending “per party” was $919.34 for the 2009 reporting period up from $799.99 for the 2008 reporting period. That was good, but nothing compared to the report given by Jeff Bourke, Executive Director of the Branson Airport. A published report in this week’s Taney County Times on that report states “The Branson Airport has generated $92 million in visitor spending…” and that “At least 41 percent of the more than 10,000 people who have flown to Branson via the airport are first time visitors.” Using Ole Seagull math and assuming that it’s not much more than 10,000 people, that amounts to an incredible $9,200 per person or $18,400 for a “party” of two.”

It was meant to be a no brainer “tongue in cheek” piece. As is the case with most of the Ole Seagull’s columns, it was published on www.1Branson.com in the Ole Seagull’s forum. The comments there were varied, but most folks realized that the $92 million dollar figure was not accurate and got with the spirit of the occasion. Those comments ranged from Dalmation Dad’s comment “It’s obvious we need more planes and then more banks to hold all that new money” to the more dramatic comment of the every faithful Grizzly who said, “The guy got a decimal point moved and it rates a smack down from the Seagull. good thing I never made a mistake before.”

“What smack down?” The piece merely pointed out an exact quote from the Taney Country Times. What’s next accusing the Ole Seagull of a “smack down” if he asks, “How many tax payer marketing dollars have been spent to market the airport for each of the approximately 36 new visitors Branson gets per day from the airport?”

When the cancellation of Sun Country’s flights was announced KOLR TV reported, “KOLR10 News has learned that Sun Country Airlines will end its service to Dallas and Minneapolis on December 12. Branson Airport leaders say Sun Country was only here for seasonal service. They hope to renegotiate with the airline and bring the service back when the spring tourism season starts in April.”

Is it a “smack down” to ask, “Does Branson ‘season’ end on October 17” or “Exactly what service is Sun Country providing from Dallas to Branson between October 17 and December 12?” The reason the Ole Seagull asks is that he is looking at the Sun Country schedule at this very moment and doesn’t see any. Did he miss the public announcement to that effect?

Goose hunting “Goosed,” WOW $9.2k per person, $680k for targets and “most useless award”

Posted in General by The Ole Seagull on the October 4th, 2009

Hunting of Canada Geese off of Branson Landing “Goosed.”

The sound of shot gun blasts got the attention of Lamar Patton, the owner of Scotty’s Trout Dock, late on the afternoon of Sep.26. When he looked downstream off his dock he noticed some nit wits in a boat located just downstream from the Business Highway Bridge apparently enjoying a challenging day of hunting. They were shooting the almost domesticated Canada Geese just off the Branson Landing Parking lot within the city limits of Branson.

Several calls to local law enforcement agencies resulted in not only in no one responding to the call, but telling Lamar “It’s a conservation issue.” It wasn’t a “discharging a firearm inside the city limits issue,” but a “conservation issue” and, to the best of Lamar’s knowledge, no law enforcement officer responded to the call.

Does that mean it’s open season on Canada Geese in the Branson City limits waters between the Branson Landing shoreline and the center of Lake Taneycomo? Not hardly! City of Branson Police Chief Carroll McCullough said that, if the situation transpired as described, it was more than “a conservation issue” it was a violation of a city ordinance against the discharging a firearm within the city limits. Does that mean that those wanting to shoot ducks and geese on Lake Taneycomo should find somewhere else to do it other than within the waters of the city limits of Branson? Absolutely!

WOW, do Branson Airport Visitors Spend More?

Those attending the annual meeting of the Branson Lakes Area Tourism Community Enhancement District on Sep. 24 were given information by Branson Lakes/Lakes Area Convention and Visitors Bureau that the average spending “per party” was $919.34 for the 2009 reporting period up from $799.99 for the 2008 reporting period. That was good, but nothing compared to the report given by Jeff Bourke, Executive Director of the Branson Airport. A published report in this week’s Taney County Times on that report states “The Branson Airport has generated $92 million in visitor spending…” and that “At least 41 percent of the more than 10,000 people who have flown to Branson via the airport are first time visitors.” Using Ole Seagull math and assuming that it’s not much more than 10,000 people, that amounts to an incredible $9,200 per person or $18,400 for a “party” of two.

$680 K for ADA mandated ramps not one penny for cross walks.

The Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) is currently installing 393 sidewalk ramps at street and driveway entrances along West Highway 76 between Roark Valley and Gretna Roads “to meet the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).” The $680,000 in funding for the project is stimulus money from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Interestingly, between the west side of the junction of Fall Creek Road and Gretna Road there is not one cross walk for pedestrians, with or without a disability,  to use to get afely from one side of Highway 76 to the other. Well the good news is that when they are built the sidewalk ramps will be there and until then those trying to cross Highway 76 will at least have a target to aim for.

Taney County Transportation Committee should win “Most Useless Award.”

What is the Taney County’s priority for the southern end of Fall Creek Road as the city of Branson is about to open the Fall Creek Road extension which will create the opportunity for a main north south corridor road from Highway 165 to Highway 248? Maybe the “Shadow knows,” but no one else knows because there is no list of Taney County transportation priorities. What a pathetic situation for a Class 1 county, transportation planning by osmosis, influence, or “pluck.” Based on what they have accomplished so far the Ole Seagull just has to nominate those on the “Taney County Transportation Committee,” or whatever it is currently being called, for his first annual “Transportation’s Most Useless Award.” The award has as much influence and value as their contribution to solving the transportation problems of Taney County has had thus far.