Leaders in a free republic should serve the common good. That’s why the U.S. system of government and our freedoms have captivated and inspired people around the world. Basically, we are proof that a free people can make the right choices and self-govern and, usually, do the right thing.
Courtney Lix grew up entwined in the natural and cultural history of Great Smoky Mountains National Park like a vine climbing up an ancient tree. Her grandfather, Henry Lix, was a park service employee who came to the Smokies to work as a naturalist in 1951. By 1953, he had founded the Great Smoky Mountains Natural History Association (today Great Smoky Mountains Association) in order to enhance visitor understanding of the many remarkable attributes of the Smokies.
As Lori and I walked our dog through the roads in our subdivision this morning before sunrise, Election Day, we hoped for no fog and no clouds so we could witness the lunar eclipse. It was indeed crystal clear, the stars were out, and for most of the walk we watched as the Earth’s shadow slowly moved across the full moon near the western horizon. It’s a subtle celestial show, the darker orange/yellow slowly covering the brighter yellow/white. Otherworldly.
The delegates had spent a sweltering Philadelphia summer behind sealed doors and windows debating and drafting a constitution for what would become the United States of America. Asked what they had to show for it, Benjamin Franklin famously replied, “A republic, madam, if you can keep it.”
Early voting has started. In North Carolina and across the nation there are many close races that will likely be decided by just a few percentage points. That means the swing voters — those who don’t vote a straight party ticket but instead vote for the candidate based on their qualifications or perhaps even their personality — could very well be the difference in those tight races.
George Vanderbilt first opened Biltmore, his magnificent private estate, to family and friends on Christmas Eve 1895. Today, his descendants continue welcoming guests with that same spirit of gracious hospitality.
We’re all aware that many items in the supermarket have increased in price, so it will be no surprise to discover that this year it will be more expensive to put a Thanksgiving meal on the table. Here are some ways to save: