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?The Little Engine That Could' - Zach Porter

I was recently reminded of a book from my childhood "The Little Engine That Could" by Watty Piper, you know the one where the cute little train says "I think I can, I think I can, I think I can," while wondering what kids read these days. It's a good book to read to a young child, a simple lesson embedded about self-reliance and conservative values. To look at some American families today, you'd think that book had been rewritten, with are little choo-choo trains being aided by the help of an expensive government program, exclaiming as he struggles up the hill, "I think the government can."

Some people apparently no longer wish to tell the essential moral of "The Little Engine That Could," instead opting for a tall tale in which the train is no longer an individual but a big liberal monstrosity on wheels, packed from the engine to the caboose with an all star lineup of the best guests ever seen on the Jerry Springer show.

Today's kids don't need an illustrated little book, they get all the inspiration they need from violently savage video games. Why learn to read and nurture your imagination when you can blow people's heads off in a video game? Why create your own world when it's so convenient to press the power button on one that's been created for you? In this sense the child becomes a slave to these video games, not imagining, not thinking, and well on their way to adopting a liberal philosophy of life in which they play supporting roles in their own lives. The kids that delight in video game nonsense today will be the no-wage workers of tomorrow.

Perhaps what young children need is not a bedtime story but a swift kick in the pants, "Kindergarten Cop" style (I love the line where Schwarzenegger tells the kids "you lack discipline." One could also learn a lesson from "Ahh-nuld" who came to America, conquered Hollywood, and more recently won an election for Governor in a large state that generally votes Democratic. In the real world this lack of discipline is from a lack of parental concern or control. These unruly, violent video game-addled hellions are the future of America.

Although I don't support Bush's moral stance on Gay Marriage (it's essentially a religious issue for the church, which is supposed to be separate from the state) I think in his second term he has a great chance to squash this growing liberal bug. Judging by the popular vote, a majority of Americans are ready to take responsibility for their actions, take care of the lives that they brought into this world, for which they are personally responsible. The new mantra should be "work, work, work," not "programs, programs, programs" as it would have been should John Kerry have won this presidency. The new tale that can be told now, after the election, is that Kerry was driving the "Liberal Engine" that couldn't, and that's probably because the majority of the people on board that train did not have the enthusiasm or the drive, to push itself over the hill. That's the essential problem with liberalism, when everybody on board (the dead weight so to speak), expect one does the work, the train will stall. Indeed, the system will fail.

Zach Porter is a photographer with the News Daily. He can be reached at (770) 478-5753 ext. 248 or zporter@news-daily.com .