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John Sellars.org

Over the past 2 ½ years, John and I have spent a lot of time writing to whomever opens John’s political website on all kinds of issues and observations about life here in our great city. So, we have decided to continue writing—both of us, and we really would like to have a dialogue with all of you who come to visit.

It’s interesting, but we never really get angry or mad at each other when our views don’t jive or match. We really like discussing what’s going on not just locally, but globally. As time goes by, I think the topics of discussion could come from something that is happening in the community, it could be a topic about the arts or education, it could be just about anything. And as long as you are respectful and circumspect in your comments, please, join in. We just might learn a lot about each other—maybe we will like what we learn, and maybe on some issues we won’t like what someone has to say, but hey, this is America and we all have a right to our opinions.

A Minor Occurance?

20 January 2013 ~ 0 Comments

Sometimes, we have to stick our necks out and say what we really think. There are issues I could talk about all day and all night, but I know what I say or think really won’t make one bit of difference in the end. But today, there was an article in the Sunday News-Leader on our state legislators and a little bit of voting that really got to me. It isn’t an issue of paramount importance – in fact it is quite miniscule in the grand scheme of things.
Here is what I understand happened just this last week in Jefferson City. A vote was to take place to decide whether members of the House could smoke inside their private offices in the Capitol building. Apparently both parties decided they really didn’t want to have to decide for everyone involved, so instead the vote would be taken in each party’s caucus, the Dems would decide their own fate in this breath-taking dilemma and the Republicans would do the same.
Now those of us who are not privileged to be a part of this process have our own opinions on this matter. But it seems that there just might be some other quite serious issues facing the citizens of Missouri – in some cases life and death issues – like health care, affordable housing, livable wages for full-time work, food on the table – the list goes on and on, that our legislators should be tackling.
So, what happened in the House? Well, the Democrats voted in caucus not to allow any of their members to smoke in the Capitol building. But the Republican House legislators felt it was necessary to allow smoking in any member’s private offices. There you have it – your tax dollar at work – on an issue that really is of no earthly importance – which shows us what? That we really aren’t important? That we really do live a life so far removed from the lives of our elected officials that we have no clue what is important? I don’t think so – we are the backbone of this country – we are the daily workers of this great state, and if we can’t get a little upset and speak out on issues that aren’t really issues at all, then I’m not too sure what we can do to fight the good fight and stand up for what really is important – like a bright future for our children and grandchildren, like equal opportunities for all. You know, this is America – the land of the free and home of the brave… Jane

Jane’s take on playing the game

02 October 2012 ~ 0 Comments

Over the past two and a half years, John and I have written numerous letters, blogs and short issue pieces since we started on a journey that taught us a lot and made us sit back and really take stock of our lives. We have come full circle – maybe not exactly where we necessarily thought we wanted to be at this time, but we have come to realize that where we are is really the best place to be..
If I were to pass on one bit of knowledge I have learned about the political arena, it wouldn’t be that you can only trust a few people who come into your life, even though I truly feel that is a good, solid piece of advice to impart. No, what I will share with you is to look very carefully at those around you. Take the time to really talk to people, to watch them, to delve into their past, because then you will just scratch the surface in truly getting to know and possibly understand them. If you realize that just about everyone has an ulterior motive, some little scam up their sleeve, and just possibly will blind-side you at any chance they get, you get a feeling for what the political arena has in store for you.
The problem is, if you play the game just like them, you become them – you take the chance of selling your soul to the company man. If you get in deep enough, you might not even know just which company you’re playing to. So, watch your back, keep everything close inside you, and never trust the guy with the smiling face, the cool answers to every question, who really is not answering anything at all. He is the guy to watch. Who are his bedfellows? How does he play the game? Fair and square, with intelligence and honesty? Or is he playing just for himself – with no regards for anyone around him?

Answering an editorial

11 September 2012 ~ 0 Comments

It is very rare that I feel compelled to respond to an opinion piece in the newspaper. I value everyone’s opinion and reading differing ones helps me to formulate the best approach to issues and problems that face us all. Today I read a piece in the newspaper, however, that requires a response.
Dr. John Lilly’s writing in the Tuesday newspaper provided many well know facts and figures about voter turnout and election results and what they mean as far as his opinion of the current percentage of voters that are liberal or conservative. From this listing of figures, he comes to the conclusion that liberals vote more often because they are more committed to their cause to “change society to their liking”. He likens the voting process to a fight and says that liberals are more willing to fight and get involved.
As a conservative and very strong proponent of small, less intrusive government, I have to disagree with Dr. Lilly. None of us need to consider going to vote as a fight or conflict. We need to see it for what it is, our duty as citizens to do our part and participate in the process that has made our country the greatest on earth. Not voting is a conscious reflection of the apathy and lack of patriotism we see all over our country. Every citizen needs to get to know what the issues are. Every citizen needs to learn about the candidates and their positions on the issues that confront us all. Every citizen needs to decide how they think each candidate and issue will impact our city, state and country and vote as our conscience dictates, not just when it is convenient, but every time there is an election.
This republic, built with the sweat and blood of generations of like-minded people, must be preserved by the participation of us all every time the polls are open. No matter the outcome, when we vote it is as our founding fathers envisioned it “of the people, by the people and for the people”. Not a conflict but a celebration of liberty and an example of citizenship for those who come after us to emulate.

Laboring away on Labor Day

03 September 2012 ~ 0 Comments

Today is a holiday for the working people of America. Everyone takes a three day weekend and has that last summer cookout and picnic with their family and friends. It is a fine day to celebrate the people who have made our country great by their hard work and initiative. As with most holidays I and my co-workers are not at the lake or cooking in the back yard we, just like many others, are doing our usual jobs. As you enjoy your time off today stop for a minute and think about all of the people who are still working. Some of them like me are taking care of others and making sure their needs are met. Some are keeping us safe and secure both here and across the world. Some are doing tasks that must be done every day to keep our economy moving the best that it can. No matter what they are doing think of them as you enjoy your day.
I hope everyone has a safe and happy holiday.

Representation, please…

25 August 2012 ~ 0 Comments

Right now there are many issues confronting the people that we have elected to represent us. At the city level, medical marijuana and protection from discrimination are being debated, and all around the state everyone has an opinion on the Republican candidate for U.S. senator.
It is such an interesting situation. We can see what character each person has by the way they handle the pressure of making these important decisions. In one situation very few of the city council members seem willing to stand up for what they think is right and are more than willing to “kick the can down the road” rather than jeopardize their political future by making the tough decisions we elected them to make. On the other hand we have Representative Todd Akin. Mr. Akin is a very nice man. I don’t agree with many of his positions and opinions on issues but I admire his character. He has never wavered from his positions and no matter what the situation he has always stood by his own, sometimes misguided in my opinion, principals.
So, what does this situation tell us? First, it tells us that we must be more active in learning about the people we send to represent us. Second, it tells us that we must communicate with our representatives regularly or they will get lost in the negative noise of special interests that don’t represent a true picture of how most of us would like things to be. Third, we must understand that the methods sometimes used in a negative campaign are even more devious that we can imagine. For example, Senator Claire McCaskill selected her own opponent by running a seemingly negative campaign that convinced many voters that he was the most “conservative” candidate and not just the one she could defeat, using his own rock solid positions on some issues which did not align him with a majority of the voters. So, beware any time a candidate takes time out of his or her own campaign to say something about their opponent.
They just might really be telling you something about themselves. And it’s not always a pretty picture.

The Sunday Paper

19 August 2012 ~ 0 Comments

Wow! Several interesting articles in this morning’s Sunday paper. We want to comment on some of them and hope you will comment back. One article discussed the opinions of voters on their elected representatives. Another article gave the same old reasons why you and I, the ones sitting at home, trying to cope with every day, often unexciting lives, don’t go to the polls and vote. So what should we, as citizens of this wonderful country, do?
While walking and talking to people during our recent campaign and with our friends and neighbors, we heard a lot about how nothing is being done to really come up with solutions both sides can support. Those in office seem to just sit around and complain, but do nothing to reach out to others in the General Assembly or in Washington to solve the problems that are facing all of us every day.
We have several very heavy decisions to make this Fall. One, can we trust the one delivering the message? Two, have we really looked at the supporters of any given candidate? Do we like what we see? And I don’t mean the physicality or speech patterns of the individual. Those are superficial and don’t really constitute the whole person. Are the people supporting that candidate, people/groups you want to associate with every day? Three, what has this candidate done in the past to warrant our vote? How have they been an active part of our community? Find out – take the time to really get to know that candidate. When they say they are going to be somewhere and want to meet you and spend time with you, GO! Learn to have civil conversations with those who are running for office. Four, what type of tactics does this candidate enlist? Are they talking about what they are going to do if elected, or are they primarily bashing the other candidate? How ethical are the mailings they send to you? If that doesn’t give you some readings on the individual’s ethical behavior and character, not much else will.
We are electing citizens, people just like us, not any better or more important, just citizens that we want to go to Jefferson City or Washington for the right reasons. And those reasons are what? To help us attain the American Dream? To help us educate our children to the best of their abilities? To take care of those – the least of these – who are unable to care for themselves? To make sure that affordable health care is available in a free market atmosphere?
Stop using the same old excuses: my vote doesn’t count – I can’t make a difference. Yes, you can! This country has too many great points for any one of us to give up on it now – we can’t afford to stop when we all have children and grandchildren who are standing right behind us, believing in us – asking us to show them the way…
What do you think?

To everyone who helped us

08 August 2012 ~ 1 Comment

The signs are down, campaign paraphernalia put away, and we are breathing deeply with no regrets. Our campaign was clean and about the issues, not “stuff” that would mislead or conjure up monsters. Thanking our supporters – those who contributed to the campaign in any way, is on our minds today, and we thank each of you. You made the campaign, the visiting and getting to know the voters across the district, what we will remember with positive feelings.

As we picked up signs early this morning, we both remembered the individuals we talked with, the discussions we had with you and those were truly fond memories. The Spring and Summer of 2012 would not have been worth it without each one of you.
Thank you and we hope to see you around.

Primary Day

07 August 2012 ~ 0 Comments

It’s Primary Election Day – the polls are open from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. I know that life can get in the way and there are many pressing issues that each of us face, but we have one responsibility when deciding the course of our government and that is to let our voices be heard by voting. I hope you will do that sometime over the next 13 hours. If you are a voter in the 134th, I believe my business experience, community involvement and knowledge not only of the district but also of southwest Missouri makes me the best choice to represent the 134th. I hope you think the same.

The District speaks on Tuesday

04 August 2012 ~ 0 Comments

It is Saturday before the primary election. We have been working for months to reach this all-important time in the campaign. Jane and I have knocked on hundreds of doors and talked to citizens from all parts of our district. It has been hot and tiring work but getting our message out to as many voters as possible is important. The people we have spoken with have been very gracious and appreciative of our efforts. We have heard many voice their concerns about where our state and country are headed. But they all have hope that changes can be made to get us back on the right track toward what can be a bright future for us and our children.
These past several days, we have noticed a change in people as we have knocked on doors – people are taking this weekend to really study the candidates, and to make decisions on how they will cast their votes this coming Tuesday. As a candidate, I find this information to be exhilarating.
The people, all of us, are the most important part of our country at all levels of government. Participating in every election is a must, no matter how trivial we think it may be. Our lack of participation gives rise to special interests and allows a few to decide the course of government for the many. We have one responsibility as citizens of this great country and that is to vote. I hope that if you are a voter in the 134th district you will support me on Tuesday, but it is even more important that you get out and let your voice be heard no matter what choice you make.

The voice of my loving wife

31 July 2012 ~ 0 Comments

With just one week to the August 7th primary, this week is my turn to tell you just why my husband, John Sellars, is the very best person to become the Republican candidate for the 134th House seat. First, you must understand that philosophically, I am a Democrat and John has always been a card-carrying Republican. We don’t see eye-to-eye on a lot of issues, but we always agree to disagree. That is a plus as far as I am concerned – my husband is open to all discussion points – he listens, he is an observer and a fine judge of character. Throughout his career in business, John understood that his employees are the ones who will make or break him – he knows that by working with his employees and being fair and equitable, he is creating a work place that is productive and positive. I know John will carry that trait to Jefferson City and work with others – finding solutions and working out problems.
John is innovative. Anyone who has worked with John knows that he looks at the big picture – he finds solutions and sees what is happening before many others see the bigger picture. In early 2000, John saw that taking soda out of schools was the right decision, but it took others above him several years to realize that juices and water in cold drink machines would be just as profitable and much wiser choices for our young people. If you enjoy looking at the historical pictures in the News-Leader and identifying who, what and where of that photo – that was an innovative project John took to the newspaper and got them to include in the Sunday editions.
One of John’s favorite expressions is “always remember, when you push over that first domino, you’d better have an idea where the last one will fall”. John isn’t going to do something that is rash; he will think things through, he will be accountable for his actions, and he will look to experts to fill him in on information when he doesn’t have all the answers.
John is compassionate, caring and a dedicated family man. He supports all his children in any way he can. We are so proud of our hard-working, concerned children. They have grown into productive, loving individuals, and we are blessed to be able to spend quality time with all of them. Family vacations help build positive, loving memories for all of us. Just like you, our grandchildren are our life and we love spoiling them – and sending them back to their loving parents.
John is patriotic. In the late sixties, he traveled to Kansas City twice, trying to enlist and become a part of our armed services. Twice – when many of our young men were finding ways to stay out of harm’s way. His bad knees and feet caused the board to reject him both times. Now, he is asking you to give him the chance to serve his country – not on the battlefield, but as your representative in Jefferson City. I am sure that you will be more than satisfied with his efforts to represent you and be your voice.