... that poet John Keats wrote of something which he was unsure was a vision or still part of a dream. That’s sort of how I felt when I pulled the Sunday, Oct. 28 newspapers from their box, and in the dim light of a 6:30 a.m. dawn thought I saw a sentence that said The Des Moines Register was endorsing a Republican for president. I did not have my glasses on. I tell folks I don’t really need glasses, that I just use them to see with, so thought perhaps I had misread the line. But sure enough, back in the kitchen, with lights and glasses on, there it was. I was as surprised as I would have been had I taken out the sports section to read Iowa had beaten Northwestern in football, despite the fact that I had watched the Iowa defeat on television. It wasn’t until I was parked early in front of church that I got to read the Register’s explanation. That’s where I always read the Register’s Opinion section. At that time I also noticed that leftist Register columnist Rekha Basu was not toeing the company line, and had another paean to the Democrat president. A couple days later, the paper reported that Basu had called top Democrat David Axelrod to talk about the paper’s choice. This newspaper has a policy of not printing columns or letters advocating for candidates or causes in the week before a vote, and since I was instrumental in setting that policy won’t comment on the Register’s reasonings. That’s true even though most of you won’t be reading this until the day after the election. Best to avoid even the hint of impropriety. The last time the Register endorsed a Republican was 40 years ago, Richard Nixon over the less-than-inspiring Democrat McGovern. That didn’t work out too well in the long run, but newspapers sort of have personalities, and the Register had also endorsed Nixon instead of John Kennedy in 1960. I was busy winding up my active duty tour with the Navy that year so was not in Iowa and have no memory of why that choice was made. Although I have my suspicions. Anyway, I am not at all certain daily newspaper endorsements have all that much of an effect on political races. I may have to eat a little crow, if that’s on my diabetic diet, because I always used to claim I read the Register so I will know what NOT to favor, that is, anything the Register is for! New subject. I have discovered another reason to hate government or corporate interference in our daily lives. My pharmacy tells me that henceforth, all prescription medications have to be filled using the same color, shape and size bottle. That’s true of 30 little pills the size of a grain of wild rice or 30 horse capsules. I take five pills each morning and five or six each night. I used to be able to line the bottles up so that I could recognize each by its size and placement. Now, they all are the same. And the name of the drug is in 8 pt. type of one of the three sides of the triangle shaped bottle, and can’t be read in dim light. And who decided three-sided bottles lined up better than square ones or round ones? Yet another case of it if ain’t broke, please don’t fix it!
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