By Rick Fromm
By Rick Fromm

    After months – make that years – of constant campaigning, the election is finally over. Regardless of your opinion on the outcome(s), there is definitely one thing we can all agree on: The seemingly endless barrage of television commercials about the election have finally been taken off the air. And that’s a good thing. A very good thing. Besides, I knew them all by heart anyway.

To say this was one of the most interesting and controversial elections in U.S. history is a big-time understatement. Some constituents are so upset about Donald Trump beating Hillary Clinton they are rioting in the streets throughout America. Even to the point of standing in front of semi trucks on a highway (not well thought out).

What are my thoughts on the Nov. 8 stunner? For what they’re worth:

The Democrats, Democratic National Committee, Hillary herself and the mainstream media were over confident to the point they underestimated the opposition and it cost them the election. They were totally convinced Trump had no chance of winning and that cockiness turned into a disaster. I mean, they were so sure of Hillary’s victory they were popping champagne corks as soon as the polls closed.

Forget about the popular vote because under our current system that’s not the one that counts. While Hillary garnered over 750,000-plus more votes than the Donald, he smoked her in the electoral college total that is required for election, and like it or not, that’s the one that counts. Trump dominated rural, working/class America and simply blew Hillary’s and Bill’s and Chelsea’s and Obama’s doors off. Why? Because U.S. citizens are fed up with the status quo approach of our government and no entity represented the status quo more than the Clintons. The average Joe and Jill America are sick and tired of falling further and further behind economically. They are sick and tired of the middle class having to dig deeper and deeper into their wallets to make ends meet. They are sick and tired of seeing their health-care premiums rise to debilitating levels. They are sick and tired of rising taxes. They are sick and tired of having to be “politically correct” in everything they do. They’re sick and tired of supporting ne’er-do-wells who don’t work a lick but still think they should be entitled to everything without having to do their fair share. They’re sick and tired of sending their kids to school and having to worry they’ll be slaughtered by some nut head or terrorist group. They are sick and tired of wondering if they can go to a movie or the mall and not be killed in cold blood. They are sick and tired of seeing their utility and energy costs going through the roof. They are sick and tired of having the government tell them exactly how to live. They are sick and tired of the ever-increasing cost of living. They are sick and tired of the constant influx of immigrants -- no matter their background or history. They are sick and …. I could go on and on, but you get the idea. How sick and tired are they? Sick and tired enough to elect a blowhard like Trump.

So where do we go from here? I suggest we all take a deep breath (about 50 should do it) and see if Trump doesn’t morph into a presidential figure who can actually come through on his promise to “Make America Great Again.” In other words, maybe he’ll see the light and lead this country responsibly. We can always hope. 

And while you’re at it, take a moment to appreciate the Founding Fathers and how they set up our government in the first place: with inherent checks and balances. In other words, no one, not even the Donald, can serve as a dictator in the United States of America.

We’ve got Josey

The unpredictability of sports is its great appeal. Put another way: Anything can happen, and it usually does.

How else can you explain Iowa’s stunning 14-13 victory over second-ranked and unbeaten Michigan last Saturday in Iowa City? Unbelievable  -- even to the most devout Hawkeye supporter. The football world remains in total and utter shock.

Why was the upset win such a stunner? Because Iowa came into the game with a lackluster 5-4 record that included a loss to FCS powerhouse North Dakota State. To say that Iowa had slipped into mediocrity was accurate to say the least.

Not only that, Iowa was coming off an embarrassing and humbling loss to Penn State in a game where the Hawks gave up 600 yards in offense to the Nittany Lions and completely lost their intensity in the second half. It was so bad a Penn State running back even commented after the game he could tell the Hawkeyes had given up in the third and fourth quarters and were more than ready to get out of Happy Valley.

So it seemed a foregone conclusion the mighty Wolverines would blow Iowa’s doors off when they came to town. Wrong.

How did Iowa pull off the miracle? Great question. Call it Iowa pride, a renewed determination to prove itself to be a quality football team or whatever reason you want to come up with.

Personally, I’ve got my own theory and it can be summed up in two words: Josey Jewell. I’ve been following Josey closely throughout his career and there’s one thing I know for sure: the likeable young man from Decorah is a winner… period. As long as you have Josey Jewell on your team, you’ve got a chance.

Although not a braggart or cock of the walk, Josey plays with great confidence and even told quarterback C.J. Beathard before the game that if the offense could put 14 points on the board, the defense would take care of the rest. Done deal.

Call me a star-struck optimist, but that’s my story and I’m sticking to it. Rock on, Josey.

Shop locally, hypocrites

If I hear one more person or organization tell me I should shop locally, I’m going to give them an old-fashioned tongue-lashing.

Not because I refuse to shop locally – quite the contrary. I just can’t stand it when someone is preaching to everyone to shop local and they’re driving a Subaru or Toyota or Nissan they purchased in La Crosse or Rochester.

They pontificate about how everyone in the community benefits when we shop locally and they’re standing on their soapbox in an outfit they bought from Macy’s or a store in Minneapolis.

Quit being hypocrites and mean what you say: shop locally.