Your Christmas Gift to Me

Your Christmas gift to me…by Dale Lehner ©2006

This night I write: Dear Santa Claus, Please do this for me, just because

I love my fellow man this year, I see, a little bit more than presents for me.

Don’t bring me presents for Christmas this year, Don’t bring me kindness or bundles of cheer,

Give all my gifts to those in need, And let your gift to me be a good deed.

Take all my sweaters to ol’ Good Will, Take all the toys to the poorer ones still.

Bring my soul a moral clarity, And give all my presents to a charity.

Please do a kind act for one who is down, Help all the homeless all over town,

Please lend a hand to one who has none, And give your love to everyone.

Don’t bring me presents for Christmas this year, Give a donation and help someone near,

Go do a kindness for someone in need, May your gift to me be a good deed.

Don’t bring me presents for Christmas this year, Don’t bring me mittens or treasures so dear,

Give all my gifts to those in need, Let your gifts to me be only good deeds.

I have just one wish for those in command, Of people and money o’er all the lands,

Take just a portion of what you are worth And help bring about Peace on this Earth.

Don’t bring me presents for Christmas this year, Don’t bring me kindness or bundles of cheer,

Give all my gifts to those in need, And let your gift to me be a good deed.


I support Chuck Hagel

I support Chuck Hagel for many roles in government service but I am not convinced that Defense is one of them….

Oh, I have heard the argument that Hagel is the guy to navigate a reduction in military spending in a responsible manner. I believe that to be true. Is Hagel the man who can choose among weapons systems and military defense strategies? Is Hagel the man who can ‘situation advocate’ among military options? I wish to hear more before committing myself to Chuck Hagel at Defense.

I voted Chuck Hagel for President in 2008 although he was not running. The liberals demonized Hagel because of a link to voting machines and suspected corrupt voting ‘underware’ but that is preposterous on the face of it. Not that he could not have done it if he set his mind to it, it’s just that he was unlikely to have done anything related to the software design. There is some integrity in Chuck Hagel that has manifested itself over the years.  If you read what some Jewish advocates write you’d think he was an anti-Semite. But he is not. He does challenge everyone’s thinking on what role the US should be playing with its ally Israel. Hagel knows well the difference between Jews, the people, and Israel, the country. His integrity would be in the way of any malfeasance he attempted.

Remember that Chuck Hagel, although a Republican by nature, is despised by fellow Republicans because he is not extreme enough. I find it interesting that Republican Senators who maneuvered the process to get John Kerry nominated as Sec’y of State are not advocating that an ex-senator like Hagel should run Defense. Perhaps they have the same concern as I do that he is not strong on military goals and strategies.

Having said that, if I thought for one minute that Hagel would expunge the torture supporters from DoD, I am fully on board with his nomination. The blight of torture, whose use has been kept secret and never fully disclosed, is a stain on the values in America.  I want torture out of the US military and back in the CIA and in the back room where it belongs. America turned to evil when it systematized torture operations and this needs to be cleared out of the military.  Sen. McCain said every person should know they are safe when they are in the custody of the US military and I agree with him.

I don’t want all the abuses of prisoners and torture operations publicized in the NYT and I think Chuck Hagel is wise enough to prevent that while still purging the jackasses from the US military that initiated it.

Chuck Hagel is also canny enough to do one thing that I advocate and that is to create  a military that is crafty as well as strong. The US dependence upon military hardware with “shock and awe” is lazy strategy. When all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail…But can Hagel deploy that craftiness into an offensive  strategy  to serve America? Hmm, I want to know more.

Some say that Hagel would oversee the Afghanistan transition. He has a strength in that he can speak to the Europeans with some familiarity due to his recent stint on the Atlantic Council in which strategies are developed in using European allies to promote US goals and ambitions for the world.

I support Chuck Hagel but I want to know more about why Defense is a good place for him.