Fed to us raw

Columnist : Albert Paschall

I’ve been looking for a vacation spot this summer.  I know its late but I’ve been kind of busy so I pulled out the map the other day to see where I could drive to that might be interesting.  I was thinking about Vermont.  Then I remembered I spent a week there in one day some years ago.  All I can remember are roads jammed between tourist traps and country inns every 10 miles or so.  All the inns seemed to specialize in maple syrup.  In Vermont they seem to eat that stuff on everything.  They even put it on snowballs and suck on them.  Personally I’ve never liked it much.  Sugary, runny tree sap that makes a mess out of everything.  If it isn’t taken out of the tree right it tastes bad.  And if you can’t eat well on vacation, well what else can you do?
But with Vermont’s “Independent” Senator Jim Jeffords heading the Senate’s Environment and Public Works Committee and New Mexico Democrat Jeff Bingaman chairing the Energy and Natural Resources Committee gas prices will probably continue to go up so I guess I better stay close to home this summer or the trip will get expensive.  So forget Vermont.
I could go to Scranton.  Cooper’s Restaurant in Scranton has the best crab bisque and if I’m feeling adventurous there’s even crocodile soup on the menu.  My wife and sons rave about the place.  Even Senator Hilary Rodham-Clinton, the new Democratic Senator from New York has called it her favorite Pennsylvania restaurant.
Of course I could go back to the Poconos.  Haven’t been there in years.  In Hawley, a little town next to Lake Walenpaupack, the Settler’s Inn used to have the best smoked Pennsylvania Rainbow Trout.  You could even have it for breakfast instead of pancakes with Vermont’s oozy tree sap running all over them.  I’d better hurry.  Ambitious Democrat Joe Lieberman is now running the Senate’s governmental affairs committee and the state’s Rainbow Trout could become an endangered species.  If that happens then its back to pancakes with Vermont maple syrup on them.  I don’t think I could stomach them.
On the other hand I’ve never seen Lake Erie.  The lake might be fun.
Right outside of Erie, in Northeast Boro, is a place called Johnny B’s.  According to the brochures Johnny B’s has a secret recipe for Buffalo Wing Soup that can set your soul on fire.  Well I don’t know about my soul, but I know about heartburn and with Senator Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts, the nation’s premier liberal Democrat, heading the Senate Health, Education and Labor Committee we will probably have socialized medicine soon.  If I got bad heartburn all the way out near Erie and Senator Kennedy gets his way would my Philadelphia HMO cover it?
The way they describe them I can almost taste the pierogie’s at the Union Grill II in Pittsburgh.  I grew up with Ukrainian neighbors and I know a good pierogie.  At the Union Grill II they claim the pierogie’s are made by the people from St. John’s Ukrainian Church.  If that’s true there’s no question that they are among the best.  It would be a great place to invite Senator Carl Levin from Michigan who now heads up the Senate Armed Services Committee.  Some people from the Ukraine might be able to tell him what it was like to live under Moscow’s iron fist for over 6 decades. The Ukraine was forced to surrender to the power of Lenin’s Soviet Military might.  He might change his mind about President Bush’s missile defense system.
With Vermont’s traffic jams and tourist traps it’s not the place for me.  I’m told there’s friends in Pennsylvania and meals that will be memories that last a lifetime.  Whatever I do I must get to the Lincoln Haus in Lancaster County.  They boast about their scrapple.  Nothing’s better than Lancaster County scrapple with maple syrup on it—Canadian maple syrup.
I hope Jim Jeffords stops at the Lincoln Haus someday.  He can enjoy the scrapple and reflect on his “independence.”  Single-handedly in one day he handed the United States Senate over to the Democrats overturning the elected Republican majority.  Bush’s equally elected agenda is history. The archaic rules of the Senate, that haven’t been changed since the Civil War, will choke judicial appointments, block reduction of the Federal Government’s size and erase education initiatives for the next two years.  One guy from Vermont made a mess of the menu in Washington.  If he gets to the Lincoln Haus, Jeffords might remember another Republican’s words.  Not far from the Lincoln Haus, Republican Abraham Lincoln said “government, of, by and for the people” was a sacred American concept.  Too bad Senator Jeffords never learned Lincoln’s basis for governance.  Even though Bush and the Republicans were elected to a one-vote majority – they were elected.  But courtesy of Senator Jeffords we will have the Democratic agenda fed to us raw.  It will undoubtedly be sugar coated in the rhetoric of liberalism but it will still taste the same.