March Letters to Jim: The Mount Rushmore of Women Singers and Rail Disasters

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If I seem a bit cranky with my replies this month it is because February only has 28 days. I needed those extra two or three lost days to feign caring about your letters. At least March has 31 days. With the three extra days, I can afford to move to Tennessee and still have enough time to be cranky for next month’s edition. For now, just be happy I can answer your questions when I am up to my ears in moving boxes.

Dear Jim,
Why have so few Republicans tossed their hat into the ring to take on Trump for the party nomination? It seems if they want to be president, they would have done so by now just to get their faces out there to the American public? Are they still afraid of him?
GOP Voter

Great. My first letter and it is from a Republican who actually believes there is a person out there who can lead their party to normalcy. The GOP made the choice to jump the shark with their support of Trump and the few sane people in that party know there is no chance of returning the GOP to the pre-Trump days (those days were brought to you by G.W. Bush which didn’t turn out so well).

Look, it is a two horse race between two dumpster fires from Florida. Trump and Governor Ron DeSantis have been circling one another since the 2020 election and it is just a matter of time. between the two going toe to toe. Since DeSantis shares pretty similar positions as Trump, it is a matter of who Republican voters like the most.

All Hail King Donald —

Trump does not match up well with Biden in a do-over, so there may be some hesitancy to see him represent the party. However, we all know if the brat does not get what he wants, Trump has no problem destroying whoever it is he claims screwed him. The GOP cannot possibly raise enough money to get DeSantis elected and still pay off Trump from running as a third party candidate. Their best bet is for the feds to ruin any shot at another run for the White House by Trump.

At the same time, if DeSantis gets the nod, he suddenly seems youthful compared to both Biden and Trump. His problem is, he won’t kiss Trump’s ass in order to gain his full support and he has nothing to offer moderate voters who could not stomach Trump. What could be a benefit to him is Biden might feel comfortable handing his party over to the next generation of Democrat leaders and let them pick someone to run against the Florida governor.

If this happens, we may finally get an election between a very liberal Democrat and just as conservative Republican. I hate to remind you, but Nixon vs Humphrey, Bush Sr. vs. Dukakis, Bush Jr. vs Gore, and Trump vs Hillary Clinton did not turn out so well for Democrats. Only when Obama went up against McCain has an open presidential election gone the Democrats way since 1968.

Dear Jim,
Aren’t you concerned  about moving to one of the more conservative states in the nation after life in California? Are you going to be able to handle the different mindset there or do you worry you might snap and let the people of Tennessee have a taste of your journalistic powers?
Hoping for Fireworks

Dear Fireworks,

When it comes to politics, I have always been fluid. Blindly supporting any political party might make thinking easier for people, but it sure doesn’t make sense when neither party has much consistency when it comes to logic. California cannot sustain itself now that it has pretty much run off their middle class. The rich do not pay enough taxes, the poor can’t pay for much of anything, and the state legislature is far out of step from the average citizen who I still believe leans a little left of the center.

Selling our home in California allowed us to profit quite a bit of money after we purchased a new home in Tennessee. Gas, healthcare, other insurance, and registration fees will save us thousands more a year. No state tax will save us more and we can enjoy far more untouched land and breathe cleaner air. They also do this thing in Tennessee called maintaining their roads so add in fewer auto repairs.

My point is, there are some things conservative states do better than liberal states and vice versa. I see it as my time in California has naturally run its course and it is now time to move onto somewhere I hope will meet my biggest needs. Only time will tell if it does.

Dear Jim,
How will a lifelong rock and roll fan like you handle living in the hotbed of country music? Are you worried you will be wearing Wrangler jeans with large belt buckles and a cowboy hat? Just think of the money you will spend on new clothing to fit in back in Tennessee.
Rock Follower

Dear Rock,

I have said it before and I will say it again. Today’s country music is a joke compared to what I think of when I was a fan of Johnny Cash’s generation. It is no different than rap, or any other form of popular music in that they are all the reflection of what corporate heads want, which is music that does not stray from a preformed approach. It’s no different than listening to pop music from the 70’s when rising bands like Led Zeppelin were turning the music world upside down and telling pop fans they are not interested in the norm.

Today, big name artists are nothing more than products sold for public consumption. Pick a genre and you will see how artists not only sound alike, they dress, act, and socially avail themselves in the same manner. There is no room for individuality. Can you imagine any huge artist of the 70’s making a commercial for a company like McDonalds?

So when it comes to the musical differences, I have my preferences available to me with the touch of a few buttons and blue tooth hearing to block out what I do not want to hear.

Dear Jim,
What is the over and under on how long it takes you before you write a letter to the editor of some conservative newspaper in Tennessee? I bet it will be less than a year.
Betting Person

Dear Betting,

I am pretty sure you will lose that bet. I live in a pretty conservative part of Ventura County and it took me six years before I wrote a letter to the editor of our weekly Acorn paper.

Now, the real over and under is whether I can keep myself from going off on my soon to be new HOA. Those are where the real nut jobs with nothing to do make life miserable for others. Maybe I just need to post a sign on my front door that reads, “NO HOA talk on this property!”

Dear Jim,
I was wondering what sort of thoughts you had about two recent gaffes caught on TV. The first was Tiger Woods handing a tampon to another golfer after he out drove him by a long ways. The other was the interview of Liam Neeson by the women on “The View” in which they only seemed to want to talk about their fantasies about him. Which do you think was the bigger offense? Tiger was called out on his prank and apologized while the women on The View thought nothing of what they did.


Dear Perplexed,

Tiger got caught on camera with a typical boys will be boys prank that might still go over inside a high school locker room but misses the mark when witnessed on TV. It’s just my guess, but I bet it is nothing unusual on the pro golf tour to prank your opponent and Tiger is known for more than just the use of a tampon to get inside the head of an opponent.

As far as “The View” goes, I wonder what their reaction would be if an all-male show interviewed an actress and the hosts went on about their fantasies about her? While they may feel they are pushing the envelope for female societal advances, I am not so sure they would have approved if the shoe were on the other foot.

In the end, Tiger came off as a 47 year old frat boy while the ladies on “The View” came off as insensitive hosts to a guest who will likely never return. As for you, I want to know what sort of person watches PGA golf and “The View”? Have you ever considered therapy?

Dear Jim,
Will your dogs be able to handle the drive east when you move? That’s a long way for them to be stuck in a vehicle.
Worried Dog Lover

Dear Worried,

I am happy to report our four dogs all handled their five minute drive to their vet appointments the other day. What’s another 35 hours? We are armed with sedatives for the dogs while we drive and can always pick up alcohol for our own consumption at the end of each day. As long as we do not tie any to the back bumpers and forget them before driving away, we should all be fine.

Dear Jim,
Who would you place on your Mount Rushmore of female rock singers? Would either Stevie Nicks or Christine McVie from your favorite band be up there?
Female Rockers Rock

Dear FRR,

That’s a great question. First, I would have to put Aretha Franklin above any Mount Rushmore. Anyone who can drop what she is doing and perform an aria on a moment’s notice has no peer.

Looking up at Aretha, I would first place Ann Wilson of Heart on my Mount Rushmore. Her range is amazing and she can cover other artists as well as perform her own original music. I always loved her live take on “Unchained Melody.”

I would then include Linda Ronstadt. Her voice could rock with the best and still pull off the sweetest of sounds like she does here with Aaron Neville.

Since Aretha stands above all, I will select two other singers from the same era to hold down the two spots next to Linda and Ann. First would be Grace Slick from Jefferson Airplane. She had serious pipes, a bad ass attitude, and left us with this fantastic piece of music.

Finally, her peer became a member of the 27 club and left us far too soon. Janis Joplin could scream with the best and still deliver something as amazing as this Kris Kristofferson song,

As for the second half of your question, Christine was a wonderful singer and songwriter but lacked the full range of my choices. As for Nicks, all I can say is she lacks any range compared to the others mentioned and needs far more studio magic to pull off her songs.

Dear Jim,
Is the Biden Administration at fault for the rail disaster in Ohio? It seems the press is giving them a break on this event and would have responded differently had Trump been in office. Why do Democrats get the kid glove treatment?
Tired of the Unfairness

Dear Tired,

The rail disaster in Ohio is a direct result of decades of infrastructure neglect by both Democrats and Republicans. Along with our rail systems, our power grids, bridges, roads, and communities have been neglected. At the same time, we have had the money to fight pointless wars. As long as we continue to prioritize war over our needs at home, we can expect more disasters. Fortunately, in Biden, we finally have a president who wants to emphasize improving our infrastructure.

It also is a result of the refusal of either party to sit down with each other and find any common ground for solving matters that benefit all voters. Progressives want to move us forward at a time when the government seems incapable of meeting our basic needs while conservatives want to turn back the clock on things like regulations that are meant to prevent rail disasters.

Now, how the administration has handled the rail disaster falls entirely in the laps of the Biden Administration. Time will tell whether they provide the financial and health help residents will need to get their lives back. Also, how the area affected by the horrific damage is cleaned up will say a lot about Biden and his team.

I think since Hurricane Katrina, the media has been more apt to hold the government accountable for how it responds to disasters. However, like anything else, I am sure the Biden response will be used by both parties to further their agendas at the expense of those most in need of help.

Dear Jim,
Why is a very liberal Don Lemon receiving a slap on his wrist for his comments to conservative presidential candidate Nikki Haley? This is just one more example of the left wing controlled media looking the other way when they do wrong to us conservatives.

Dear P. O.’d,

If a publicly released suspension, ass chewing, and training is a slap on the wrist, I hate to think what your thoughts are on other punishments. On top of this, Lemon is still facing a great deal of public ridicule for asking Haley if she might be past her prime at the ripe old age of 51.

Beyond the stupidity of his question, given that Joe Biden is going to be 80 if re-elected, is the fact that Lemon is five years older than Haley. It means he is either in the throes of early dementia or proof it takes more to run for president than it does to cover those running for office. But then, what do I know? I will be 65 in a few months which means I need to get busy and shop for my coffin. I can only hope they cost less in Tennessee than they do here in California.

April’s fan mail will find me in Tennessee, unless I make a wrong turn and end up in Pacoima. In the meantime, try practicing your Tennessee accent so reading my future fan mail will feel a little more legit. Hopefully, this will help you.

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Editor’s Note: The beloved Aretha Franklin deserves one more song.