Tulsi Gabbard, congresswoman from Hawaii and Presidential candidate is very optimistic (or naive). She has already announced early plans to install a wave pool in the White House. She points out that Obama put in a basketball court and her favored sport is surfing. Of course, a wave pool is a bit more involved than a room with a smooth floor and a basketball net hung on a pole (or wall).

Jon Meacham is a much-decorated writer who has written several historical books about the U. S. Constitution, presidents, and government events. He is an educator by profession and if his teaching is as good as his writing, those college students in his classes get their money’s worth. Right now we are reading (for the second time) his book “The Soul of America”. Our lifelong habit of being a fast reader does not fit so well with the ole memory bank as it once did. Thus, to digest his words and thoughts properly, we read again and this time force our eyes and brain to move slower and let the information soak in better. Of course, some books deserve rereading. We have read ‘Truman’ three times over the years since it was first published and would like to someday find the time to read it again.

Earlier this year we read a griping firsthand account of the WWII D-Day landing in Europe. The story is by a medic who went in with the combat troops on that very first day. He tells of the events in such a way that we could feel ourselves diving into those foxholes as mortars exploded around us. So much so that we wanted to spit out the sand and mud that had spattered us as we ducked our head with every ‘boom’. Then to have him stoop to help a badly wounded soldier, only to realize it was his own brother . . . . wow!

Alabama gasoline taxes will increase by six (6¢) cents on September 1st. This is the first stage of the statewide 10¢ increase that is on the books. It will be up by 10¢ in 2021. The kicker on this new tax is that it can go up (or down) a penny every two years to adjust for inflation. Anyway, fill up before Sunday if you want to save a few nickels! The funds generated by this new tax are earmarked for road and bridge repairs and construction. The cash is divided between the state, county and the cities on a predetermined formula. The state road folks reportedly already have their first-year projects (five of them) ready to go and have set a deadline for county and city governments to get their plans for projected spending of their new “honey pot” of funds to the state for approval. No doubt there are a bunch of roads and bridges all across the state that need these funds, and more. However, we hope not a single one of the agencies getting these new funds try to depend entirely on the new tax dollars to fund all their highway work. They still have the monies they have been using for this work and need to use every dollar available on Alabama roads and bridges. However, we can almost guarantee that some governmental agency will start telling taxpayers that they will fix those potholes “when the new gas tax money arrives.”

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