Truth in Media Global Watch Bulletins

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TiM GW Bulletin 98/12-4

Dec. 6, 1998

Check Out Some Reader Reactions to Our Articles and Some Other Issues, Too

TiM READERS' FORUM

December 1998, Part I

PHOENIX, ARIZONA              Topic: TiM READERS' FORUM


In this issue...

A reaction to... "Election '98: Much Ado About Nothing" (TiM GW Bulletin 98/10-10, 10/31/98)

U.S./Pennsylvania: n Ignore Your Rights and They Will Go Away

Some reactions to... "Wall Street Boom, Main Street Doom" (a CHRONICLES magazine, October 1998 column)

Russia: n An American Finds A Better Life in Moscow

U.S./Virginia: n A Day of Reckoning Is Coming

Some reactions to... "The Coming EU-US Clash?" (TiM GW Bulletin 98/11-5, 11/12/98)

U.S./Wisconsin: n A Chiquita Banana? Don't Choke on It!

Some reactions to... "'Canadian' Banks Speculating Against the Canadian Dollar?" (TiM GW Bulletin 98/12-1, 12/02/98)

Australia: n Funny How It Sounds Like an Aussie Story!

  TiM's "Letter of the Month"

"Stop the Planet. I Want to Get Off!" - by Anita Sands

For your smile J - a Little Christmas Story

How Do You Bust Holiday Stress?


Some reactions to... "Election '98: Much Ado About Nothing" (TiM GW Bulletin 98/10-10, 10/31/98)

U.S./PENNSYLVANIA: IGNORE YOUR RIGHTS, AND THEY WILL GO AWAY

PHOENIX - Tom Martin, a TiM reader from Pennsylvania, re-quoted a passage from our TiM GW Bulletin about the U.S. Election '98:

"As for, 'general apathy of the people is a natural result of a system manipulated to not be able to change,' doesn't that remind of something which our predecessors used to call 'taxation without representation'? Bob Dj."

Then, Mr. Martin proceeded to answer it...

PENNSYLVANIA, Nov. 12 - Absolutely! Thus the good news about the bad news is that it won't take as many people to make a change. Preferably peacefully at the ballot box.

Our State representatives (Pennsylvania - I moved from Ohio) are pushing a local tax reform bill. Imbedded in it is a complicated series of public delay and ignore tactics that could go on for years, denying the public input or referendum on the school tax issue. They coughed up a huge hair ball on stage when I read the clause from the PA constitution that says the people are the authority and can petition, alter or abolish the government at any time (Article 1; Section 2).

As my bumper sticker says: "Ignore your rights, and they will go away." In Liberty,

Tom Martin

Pennsylvania

TiM Ed.: We replied to Mr. Martin that, "actually, it didn't take 'all that many' (people) even back then. I am told that less than 6% of the American population carried out the American Revolution."

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Some reactions to... "Wall Street Boom, Main Street Doom" (a CHRONICLES magazine, October 1998 column)

RUSSIA: AN AMERICAN FINDS A BETTER LIFE IN MOSCOW

PHOENIX - We received the following comment from a TiM reader, an American now living in Moscow.

MOSCOW - I am an American reader of your Truth in Media site who lives and works in Moscow. I agree with what you say. Concerning the cost of living that you wrote and another person wrote about, I would like to add my two cents worth.

I am an unskilled worker, and have found it hard to make ends meet in the US, as do tens of millions of others. Though I'm a good worker, it wasn't not enough to support myself, let alone a family.

My first trip to Moscow was in 1993. Since I liked the people, I found that I couldn't stay away. I knew that if I wanted to live here, I would have to find some work, or create a business of my own. So, this is what I did - I created a business of my own. And that is, teaching English.

This, I could never do in the US, as you need a college education along with being certified. In Russia, this has not been a problem with me, whether teaching in a school, a business, or privately. Apparently I'm good, as I have students stay with me a long time And I also get recommendations.

I don't make much money. But I feel that I have a better life than in the US. I do not live in a rat hole, nor do I live in a bad neighborhood (I don t think there is one in Moscow, despite what the media says). I have a good girlfriend, good food, and some luxuries.

I don t have a car, as I can t afford one. But the public transport system is very reliable and cheap. Even if I could afford a car, I wouldn't want one, as it would take longer to go to the city center than by metro (subway). Also, unlike the metro and other public transport in the US, the Moscow metro is safe, even late at night.

What I am saying is this: It s a shame that America has lost many of the qualities it once had. Which is what made millions of honest workers want to immigrate there. True, they still have many immigrants, but most of them are looking just to make a few dollars to send back home, or they are into crime.

I've been teaching English in Russia for about three-and-a-half years. Would I like to go back? Yes. But what would I do? Hope that some company that pays minimum wage picks me out of 20 or more applicants. Then what? Look for another full time job just to make ends meet? Or, live in a bad section of the city where the rent is cheaper, but risking my life going to and from work every day? And while I m at work, have my home with the little that I was able to buy? Having to pay more insurance because of the neighborhood I live in? Getting my old junker fixed, because I can t afford a new car? No thanks!

I am middle-aged, so I know what America was like 30 years ago, and how much life was better back then. Those of Americans who are older, know of even a better time.

Do I miss my family and friends? Yes. Do I miss America? Some things, yes. But other things, like the crime and the change in the attitudes of the people, no.

People claim that because we live in a hi-tech society, people in manual labor, or service industries, can't be paid more than what they are now. Such is not true. In the last century, most of the workers were, what we call today, blue-collar workers. Others were store clerks, etc. But they made enough money to raise a big family. And that's without the wife working at an outside job.

The fact is, that everybody has needs. Just because they don't have the knowledge doesn't mean that the don't have the same desires and wants as corporate executives, doctors and other professionals. The fact is that the government is stealing all the money. With taxes and government regulations on business the unskilled, and now, even the skilled worker doesn't make enough to live on.

People 125 years ago, were able to buy a home with cash (after saving for five years or so). The fact is, if the government operated the way they should, and just got out of meddling with business, we can have the same thing today. I am not saying that unskilled workers would get the same pay as a skilled one, but it should be enough to support a family with several children, and the wife not having to work. Wouldn't this be a wonderful country again!

Well, Bob, I would just like to say, if you plan on coming to Moscow again, and would like someone to organize your visit, make a phone call, or whatever, let me know. I'll be glad to do it (free of charge, of course). Keep up the good work, and God bless you and yours.

Craig Demott

Russia

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U.S./VIRGINIA: A DAY OF RECKONING IS COMING!

VIRGINIA - We received the following comment from a very prominent figure in American media and politics, which is why we only attribute it as "from a friend in VA:"

"Excellent piece in Chronicles on The Globalist Bear. Thanks for the advance copy. The U.S. is getting tied down everywhere: Eastern Europe, Kosovo, Bosnia, the West Bank. A day of reckoning is coming."

From a Friend in VA

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Some reactions to... "The Coming EU-US Clash?" (TiM GW Bulletin 98/11-5, 11/12/98)

U.S./Wisconsin: A CHIQUITA BANANA? DON'T CHOKE ON IT!

PHOENIX - We received the following comment from "Marco C.", whose identity we do not wish to reveal for obvious reasons. Yet his comments put a very personal spin to our sterile, global, geopolitical story to which he had responded:

WISCONSIN - I would say bananas are important because Honduras probably just lost more than 80% of their crop for "next year." It was time for the capitalists to capitalize on it. We, here in the US, seem to have no connection or care as to how much sweat goes into filling up a pallet with bananas for Chiquita, and a handful of other slave drivers.

I have a friend who put in 16 years for Chiquita in Honduras. She has grown kids now; one married and raising a family here in Wisconsin, another serving her new country "proudly" in the US Air Force. The said friend has loads of horror stories to tell of her "mui duro" - the hard, hard work at where she was born and raised. But she has yet to make the connection between her 44,000 hours hauling bunches of bananas and our (banana republic) economy in the United States.

Marco C.

Wisconsin

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Some reactions to... "'Canadian' Banks Speculating Against the Canadian Dollar?" (TiM GW Bulletin 98/12-1, 12/02/98)

AUSTRALIA: FUNNY HOW IT SOUNDED LIKE AN "AUSSIE" STORY

MELBOURNE, Australia - Hi Bob. This sounds awfully like the trade in the Aussie $. At one stage in the 1980's, we were the 10th most traded currency!

The question is: When will recognition be given to the people who actually make-manufacture and grow items, instead of to the continuous praising of the suited men in the financial enclaves?

Strange how the rich look down on the factory worker... who, in fact, provides their wealth.

David Seaman

Melbourne, Australia

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  TiM's "Letter of the Month"

"Stop the Planet. I Want to Get Off!

PHOENIX - The December "Letter of the Month" comes from Anita Sands. Here is a slightly abridged version.

U.S. (state unknown, California suspected) - I wrote one of the biggest intellectuals in the world. A brain the size of MARS. He writes articles in newspapers about WALL STREET being the perpetrator of a planetary oligarch agenda. I wrote to him "Don't you feel the real agenda is by the IMF?" (I know you say it's WALL STREET but I don't buy it). Wall Street is a lot of guys with machines who make a million a year each. It's the clerks. Wall Street is not the BIG GUY.

The Brain answered my e-mail: "Thanks for your feedback, will consider it for a TiM Readers' Forum. What state are you in?"

I wrote back that, like most non-college grad, entry-level workers, I was in a state of total desperation. My landlady had raised my rent an illegal 11%, and there were no more rent control laws in my city to protect me. They had been mysteriously expunged from the code book by the landlords and their lobbies. For years, they'd made fun of the People's Republic of Santa Monica, one of the last bastions of rent control. And finally, jeer by jeer, they knocked it off the law books! Geriatrics, prepare to move to the smoggy end of L.A.!

I told the Brain that I lived in fear of endlessly spiraling prices at the supermarket. Apples and oranges were over a dollar a pound. Rice had quadrupled in price. Food stamps were gone, unless you want to clean freeways for the county so they could fire the paid freeway workers. That was the only way to qualify for welfare.

Where were the state laws that had previously protected single mothers? I raised four fatherless children with AFDC and food stamps, Med-i-Cal. Got my kids up and running, too. But what are mothers doing these days now that all that is gone?

And renters with children, in low paying jobs, what do they do? It's a WAR out there. Landlords are so damn cagey. My landlady owns 12 houses. She snootily 'let me' move in, agreed to a reasonable rent of $1,350 for two bedrooms, had me pay a huge, $1,500 security deposit, a move which cost me four thousand dollars, and is now demanding a huge, huge rent increase. With the enormous rent she charges me, I never can save a nickel; don't get even a smidge AHEAD. I don't have the money to move, yet she is ruthlessly upping my rent. Where are the state laws that protected renters once? THEY ARE GONE!

This profiteering planet has me by the ruby begonias and is squeezing awfully hard. I don't know if I can make it. My chronic heart disease has progressed, untreated. My teeth haven't seen work in ten years and when they ache that means pus is infecting the heart valves below the jaw, and my valves are already in shreds. There's no Med-i-Cal for me as my son lost his mind, and his $500 Social Security check means our income is way above what the WELFARE people consider poverty level. As my only job in life has been being a mother of four, and my husband has abandoned them to live in his homeland, a foreign country, I will never get Social Security. His or my own.

I suggested to the famous brilliant writer whose article I'd read that there was a heartless NON-entitlement program going on in my state of desperation, or in my country of desperation to be more accurate. A PROFIT AGENDA out there, wreaked on humanity by some masked man. He said it was Wall Street, but I felt it was the IMF, the oligarchs, the transnationals and the BANKERS that use the PIPELINE of the FEDERAL RESERVE BANKING SYSTEM. And I am talking about the highest, most wealthy international bankers who create a system. A system that ignored the citizens of their own countries, and ignored the needs of people everywhere.

This beast, this Stepfather Bank was fastened on one goal and one goal only: to gnaw, pilfer and plunder every human being in every city, state and country of the planet and to squeeze taxes out of its people, pirate booty, plunder, to the highest degree, to get bankers, corporations and the legislators of all countries to collude at being PIRATES on the high seas, slashing throats and draining corpses, then sending all that cash, that blood money and gristle HOME to the devouring spider at the center of the web: The IMF.

And what does the IMF do with that money? LEND it to countries to get huge interest, right? Yes, partially but what else? Is that all? What else? What is their real reason for lending --- what was it---28 or 45 billions just last month, to Russia? A county that is overrun with Moscow Mafia?

Are the planetary overlords so greedy for new lenders that they are not using their brains when they pick loan recipients? Do they care so little for the funds they run the planet with that they will waste such a bundle of money on some high level pilferer? Don't they think about how life can be better for all of us? No, they only think in terms of profit agendas for themselves. And in a tub of greedy men, the scent of money is so thick that none of them can spot a thief. Their lust is that their cash bundle should increase 15% a year. That is the only agenda, the last vestige of reason they have. The whole damn, OLIGARCH AGENDA in a nutshell.

Some say the real reason they were nosing around Russia was that they wanted to get hold of ALL THE OIL IN RUSSIA for the least, most devalued amount of rubles they can pay. Well, it'll serve them right but OIL has mysteriously gone down to the lowest PER BARREL PRICE ever. Hope they go broke drowning in gasoline. They and the horse they rode in on.

I think, being a professional psychic interested in politics, that I know a little about the planetary overlords and their secret cravings and plots. The IMF is really planning to GET its mitts on China's 1.6 billion people as a client state, then after they've lent a few zillion and gotten a few trillion back from this new tax base; trained them to be an ANT HILL slaving 24 hrs a day to pay off China's (future) borrowings; doing hamster circles on a money pump, fed with a little inter-commie jealousy disguised as praise: "Oh look, Russia couldn't do this simple trick and you do it so well!" And China being old hand pat to head 'good' people will beam and go in hamster circles even faster.

After the ruble is devalued into DUST, they'll start rebuilding with discipline. Pharaohs will have the guilty slaves carry these huge tax stones on their backs and build a pyramid and put a big all-seeing EYE on top. THE NEW ruble, lent them by the Federal Reserve, will have Illuminati signs all over it. Maybe...

Not to worry. These nouveau-shamed Russians will become a fairly cohesive tax base sooner or later. Perhaps they have to forget the years and years of Marxist training they had had. I envy them on THAT. Lucky bunch. I can barely spell transnational.

Listen to me rant... But the IMF doesn't care about ranting critics. No problem to them. We're not even close to nipping at their gilded heels. And as for rulers who turn against them, the IMF, CIA or MI5 will just change the monkey when they want, get a fresh one with no scent of dog on him, and have him say 'we can make money here; each of us, let us cooperate with the IMF and pay taxes.'

And if one country is full of thieves and the cash never makes it into their central bank, or as in Russia's case, lasts a few days there, then vaporizes, the IMF will publicize it boldly, and let other countries see the Hell that follows for the thief. They will chuck China under the chin and say, 'here nice capitalist, you be smarter than those Russian oafs. You be more industrious. You be the client state, trading partner of our American wet dreams. And China will blush and work hard as hell to show she's better than those stupid Russians. And who's the specialist in reverse psychology that got their knickers all twisted that way? The IMF. It should stand for International Mind F...s (TiM Ed.: expletive deleted - to borrow from the Nixon tapes).

Then the IMF came to the American Congress and said, "help the starving bankers. Make a donation. We were hurt badly in Russia. Could you have your tax payers give us some payback? And from all this skullduggery, blood-letting, lending, and business doing abroad, with NAFTA and GATT - and with all that moving factories to dollar a day countries... is there any trickle-down? Any Keynesian-Milton-Friedmanism theory out there? A droplet of iron rich, red nutrition for a single one of us?

No. The IMF is not in the business of trickle-down. When we can no longer buy or run cars, fill them with gas, bank at their banks, where are they going to go for profits? That's my question. What a retrovirus they are! They and AIDS, the only two critters that will kill the HOST.

But accuse Wall Street of being the ones wheeling the pipelines around the planet? Fitting new countries with IVs? Which suck, not feed? Nahhh. Wall Street's a bunch of naive clerks, number-crunchers selling peanuts to the hoards. The day nobody has the buck for a ticket to get into the ballpark, they will starve with the rest of us.

Stop the planet. I want to get off!

Anita Sands

(state unknown, California suspected... or per Ms. Sands' own claim - "from a state of total desperation," USA, Planet Earth... still spinning, I am afraid.)

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For your smile J - a Little Christmas Story

How Do You Bust Holiday Stress?

PHOENIX - The Dec. 5 editorial in the Arizona Republic, headlined as above, asked the readers to send their own "methods for coping with hectic holiday season." TiM editor send them a very cryptic answer"

Just say "no!"

What I meant was, say "no" to cards; "no" to cookies; "no" to decorations; "no" to colored lights; "no" to school pageants; "no" to presents (why not try charitable donations, or volunteer work instead?); "no" to Christmas trees (forests will thank you); "no" to turkey (you've probably just had one for Thanksgiving, anyway); "no" to fruitcakes (the New World Order already has them in ample supply)...

In other words, just say "no" to the Christmas commercialism. And you will feel instant stress relief. In fact, if you follow my above suggestions, you may discover the true joy of giving rather than suffer the stress of spending. I know. I am speaking from experience...

Upon my return from Singapore last December (see "Singapore: Materialism without Idealism" - TiM GW Bulletin 97/12-2, 12/08/97), I was so disgusted with the commercialism of Christmas that I informed my family that they would not be getting any Christmas presents from me.

First, because they are more fortunate than many other Christians around the world. Second, because I didn't want the money to end up in some (non-Christian) merchant's pockets, such as those in Singapore or Manhattan. Instead, I told them that I would donate an equivalent amount of money to the needy in three Christian countries (remember the meaning of trinity?) where people are especially deprived - Russia, Serbia and Ireland.

Ireland was easy. I simply mailed a check to a friend I knew and trusted.

Serbia was also easy. Relatively speaking. I simply hand-delivered the money to a Bishop I knew personally. He took it to an orphanage in Kragujevac, a town in central Serbia, where 30 children (mostly girls) who had lost their parents in the latest Balkan war were being looked after and educated by the nuns at a Christian monastery.

But Russia... What to do about Russia, I fretted, considering all the stories about the rampant crime and corruption in that country?

Finally, I heard that a friend of my elder daughter's, a 22-year old woman of non-Slavic ethnic background, but a Heartland America Christian who had lived in Russia before, was going again to Russia in January of 1998 for a two-week vacation. She kindly agreed to take the money, and to make sure it reached the real needy, preferably some children or the elderly who cannot help themselves, rather than end up in some institution's or manager's account.

I also told this young lady, as I had told the Bishop earlier, that I wanted the donation to be made anonymously, with a simple annotation - "from an Orthodox Christian." After all, He, whose son's birthday the donation was intended to celebrate, already knows everything.

Upon this young woman's return from Russia, in early February, I received her heartwarming report. It made my eyes water. I want to share it with you - the Truth in Media readers, my spiritual friends - because her account what happen was so uplifting; so "Christmassy." As long as there are Christians in America like this fine young lady, there is a good chance that Good will eventually prevail over the Evil even if the Evil seems to have the upper hand right now.

This is what she wrote...

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February 9, 1998

My trip was wonderful and it was hard to come back. St. Petersburg wins me over every time. My mind is still on my vacation, so excuse my lengthy explanation of where your money went. But I welcome the opportunity to reminisce.

I think I found a wonderful place for your money and I hope that you will feel the same. I'm well aware of, and have witnessed first hand, what too often happens with well-intended, generous gifts when they fall into the hands of the unscrupulous individuals. Suffice it to say that I was concerned foremost that the money end up outside of a "director's pocket."

I have the good fortune of knowing a very good family in St. Petersburg and from the minute I told them what I needed to do, no one sat still until it was done. They are not naive either, and understood the importance of finding a reliable place for the money. The mother of the family, Nina, is a very religious individual and also considered the church. However, it was her opinion that the Orthodox churches (at least in St. Pete) have "a lot" of money right now.

Just to attest to that, I was surprised to see the progress of restoration on a number of churches I had previously seen just a year ago. It was then, the general consensus that the money could best be used by an orphanage. I must admit that I also have a soft spot in my heart for providing for the children of a struggling country since I taught in a school there.

At any rate, that decided, we then thought it best to find an orphanage, go and find out what was needed, and then make the purchases ourselves to be sure that the money was not misused. Somewhere in between all of this I took the elektrichkaya to Pushkin about 30 minutes from St. Petersburg where Ekaterinskii Dvorets is located. As things happen in Russia, my friends have an acquaintance there who was to serve as my LIVELY guide around the city. This woman is about my grandmother's age but has as much energy as I did when I was about 4. Truly a delightful woman. At any rate, she knew of a place called "Aist" which means stork, that was a shelter of sorts for children.

So after a freezing but inspiring jaunt around Pushkin, we went back to her place to warm ourselves with some borshch and made a phone call. Over the phone (three of us spoke to them in one call - you can imagine how amusing this scene was: me, the American with sorry Russian skills and two impatient Russian women telling each other and me what to say and then in the end just grabbing the phone and saying it themselves). They seemed to say all of the right things. However, in the end I wasn't satisfied and I wanted to go there and see for myself.

Surprised at the ease with which we found this place (perhaps you've had some experience of your own finding a Russian address!), we rang the doorbell and were met minutes later by a young girl of about 8. She led us to the director's office who received us eagerly. In the short walk from the door to the office my eyes were checking out the place.

At the time, it was still unclear to me what exactly this place was (I gathered it was more than an orphanage), but one things was clear, it was a healthy environment for kids. We visited with the director, a very energetic woman, for some time. She explained that all of the children there have parents, but most of them were alcoholics or abusive or had simply kicked their kids out onto the streets because they couldn't afford to keep them at home.

We ended up staying there for a very long time and she shared a lot with us, but since I'm at work and once I get started, I wouldn't stop, I'll just share with you some of the things I thought to be very important and different from a lot of "orphanage-type" establishments.

The kids are free to come and go on their own so that they do not feel as though they are trapped there or that it is like a prison. The door is always open to them when they want to come, when they need a hot meal, but they retain a sense of freedom and independence - responsibility for themselves, if you will.

Unlike lots of "shelters" this was much more than a roof over the kids' heads. They provide enriching activities for the kids, encouraging theater, painting, music, etc. etc. Which from what I can tell does much to nurture a sense of pride and accomplishment. They celebrate birthdays, holidays, etc - do the sorts of things a family would do.

They place the children at a new school in the city so that they are not burdened by the stereotypes and judgements that were established with them in their old schools.

They work to place the kids in some sort of job or internship after they graduate from school.

They encourage the children to try to maintain a relationship with their parents and even work to rehabilitate or find opportunities for the parents.

All of the furniture, etc. was donated much of it by the few staff that work there. The are in desperate need of some renovation, but don't have the money and as of yet, no one has offered. They survive mainly on donations form what I understood. Currently there are 17 children there and only space (beds) for 14. A lot of what makes the place bright (at first it seemed to me that maybe this place wasn't in such bad shape and didn't really need the money) is work that the children do themselves. Pictures, crafts, etc. simple but with lots of heart.

To say the very least, I felt very good about leaving your money there. For their official books they needed someone's name to put down, I gave them mine and they indicated somehow that it wasn't actually from me. Also, they have a very home-made sort of thank you that the kids sign and it has the shelter's emblem on it (they had a contest among the kids to draw the emblem). They filled out the certificate, I instructed them to leave the name blank and that you would fill it in yourself.

They were truly grateful. I toured the place and met some of the kids - it's a place where I'd love to tutor English if I end up spending some substantial time in the Petersburg area. I took some pictures which I will send you and was invited back to a concert if I come in the summer.

I also left my address as they thought they would write and let me know exactly what the money was used for and hopefully send more pictures.

In short, it was one of the most fulfilling experiences I had on my short trip to Russia. Thanks for providing me with the opportunity to do that. If you have any other questions, I'd be happy to try to answer them, or get the answers from my friends who were with me.

[TiM Ed.: The pictures did arrive. Eventually. Along with an official looking certificate with the children's crayon- and marker-scribbled signatures. It now hangs on a wall in a special place in our house. And it is my dearest Christmas present ever: For, it stands for the gift of giving! And yes, there is even an official Soviet-style stamp at the bottom of it to prove it. J But I "forgive" the orphanage directors for that. They meant well...]

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That's it. That was the end of one of the most uplifting letters I have ever received. After all, Christmas is not about shopping. It's not about fattening the merchants' pockets or our tummies. It's about the joy of a very special baby boy being born. And we don't need to spend any money to feel that, do we?

Merry Christmas!

Bob Dj.

Also check out the Part II of our TiM Readers' December 1998 Forum: December 1998, Part II which includes some TiM reader reactions to this Bulletin.

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Also, check out other TiM READERS' FORUMS... April 1998, May 1998, Part I May 1998, Part II, June 1998, July 1998, August 1998, September 1998, October 1998, November 1998, December 1998, Part I, December 1998, Part II