Monday, December 31, 2012

We're In The 2nd Part of LOTR

It's everybody's least favorite part.  It's not a hopeful beginning.  It's not the stirring conclusion.

It's the slogging middle.  You don't know how long you'll be in this grim, grey land.  You're tired beyond imagining, barely able to summon the strength to move ahead, slowly.

Your terrain is filled with sharp rocks, cold weather, and dangerous hot spots.  You cannot raise your spirits with song or laughter - you must hide from those who want you to fail.

Life is not good, pleasant, or rewarding.  Life in the pleasant Shire is a memory that may not even exist now.  You yearn to return to that comfortable life, with friends, neighbors, and family.

You have no words of cheer.  You can't even imagine what winning looks like, let alone that you might achieve it.  The hardest part is that you MUST succeed, but you can see no realistic way to do so.

Except for 1, your friends have deserted you, died, or gone far away.  You are surrounded by those who would squash you like a bug.  Your enemies are large, powerful, and ruthless - you defeated them, only to see them return in greater numbers - and you are now fatigued and weak.  You can trust no one, even when they speak soft words of comfort.

You cling to the one thing that make your life mean something.  At times, you dream about using that one thing to get yourself the heck out of there.  Leaving seems to be the rational solution.  There is one way to end this torture,  but your "friend" urges you not to use it.

The way forward is the moral thing to do.  But the forces of immorality and self-interest cut you off at every turn.

The "eye" is on you everywhere.  There is nowhere that you can escape the omnipresent spying; if your plans were known, the mindless hordes would be sent to kill you and steal your treasure.

How do you keep going?  How do you summon the strength to continue?

We're all going to have to find out.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Back Home Again in SC

I'm finally, somewhat, recovered from my long bus trip (14+ hours). I took a nap yesterday, and went to bed at 8:00, but it worked. I bounced out of bed at my usual 5am-ish time.
The holiday was great - I saw family, spent quality time with the kids and grandkids, and bonded with my brother and sister over the death of my elder brother.
I deliberately didn't bring any schoolwork. This trip was NOT for work - it was for family.
However, that means that I have to collapse all of the necessary work into the remaining 3 days.
That barely leaves me any time to focus on the US Budget Crisis.
For, it IS a crisis, isn't it?
No?
Periodically, the news gets its knickers in a twist, and trots out the usual gloom & doomers who pontificate about how The Heartless Republicans will, gleefully, deprive the Poor Children and Elderly of Desperately Needed Money. Oh, and don't forget Womyn, who, despite out-earning men, will surely starve without the government largess.
Yes, womyn DO out-earn men - with adjustments for Voluntary part-time work, and considering that they constitute a majority of the population, and hold more jobs than men do.
Not what the Femynist Leaders tell you? What can I say - stats don't lie, but Liars DO use stats.
IF the budget is such a crisis, why didn't the Democratic-dominated Congress pass a budget before this? Yes, I know that their "ideal" budget got shot down, but there's a cure for that - it's called COMPROMISE.
I'm sorry - I realize that "that word" is horribly obscene, not to mention a racist code word.
What makes it a racist code word? A Liberal says that, when used by a Conservative, a word is ALWAYS, AUTOMATICALLY a code word.
So, what can we expect? 10% cuts to non-entitlements and defense. In other words, the working population will take a hit. Those collecting government benefits, including Social Security. won't be touched.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

The Problem Is NOT Always My Faulty Hearing

I have a hearing disability. I've lost about 30% of my hearing, meaning that about 3 out of every 10 words are garbled. I hear the sounds, but can't make sense of the word. It's worse in high frequencies, so women will often find that hearing impaired people may fail to pay attention to what they say (so, ladies, you really ARE being tuned out - what you say comes in at such a high pitch, it is near impossible to understand what you say. Worse, when you become upset about not being paid attention to, the stress will cause your pitch to raise - making it even likelier that you will be ignored. The solution? Lower your voice, and talk about 1/3 slower).

Today, I snapped at my son-in-law. We had been looking for the remote controller, and, in the process, I noticed that an exercise band was caught under the futon leg. I tried to move the futon, but was having difficulty. I asked for assistance.

Unfortunately, my son-in-law decided that I hadn't heard that the controller had been found. He replied to my requests for assistance by repeating, "Mom, I got it", over and over again. When I said, "that's not the problem", he ignored what I said, and just got louder.

I really hate that. Too often, people assume that the problem is that I didn't hear them. Instead, other issues arise:

  • I'm busy with something else

  • I'm ignoring them - sometimes this goes with the above

  • I'm not aware that they are talking to me - this occurs often when someone is not facing me while they are talking


Tuesday, December 25, 2012

After the Holiday

I'm back.

I've been wallowing in grief - not the teary, helpless kind.

The soul-deadening, dry-eyed, resolute kind.

Grief for the young lives snuffed out in CT.

Grief for my brother, dead in the spirit long before his body was cold.

I don't know how I'm going to do it, but I'm going to work to make sure that America of the next century never deploys servicemen and servicewomen in foreign countries without a GOOD reason.

We're not using our best strategies:

  • We're not managing our borders - the ONLY reason for anyone to gain entrance - for a short visit or forever - is because it is in OUR best interest for them to do so.

  • We need to put a premium on the RIGHT kind of education. Government grants should be STRICTLY limited to those majors that we want to support - Mid-Eastern and Asian languages - the more obscure, the better - STEM careers - health careers and the like. Anyone wanting to become a teacher should be given grants ONLY if they also earn a certain number of credits in a degree that is in short supply.

  • NO HB1s, unless there is not an unemployed American with that skillset. No half-assed efforts to do an end-run around the rules. No playing around with fake "interviews" designed to eliminate Americans from consideration.


Out of the Loop

I've been out of town for the holidays (I left a few days earlier, due to a death in the family). I basically haven't looked at news on TV or on the Internet for the last 3 days.

It's kind of refreshing.

I tend to obsessively watch current events, looking at the interconnections and working my way through the original documents (I use Thomas.gov for the original text of legislation). I find that the news does a poor job of getting the information out. Too often, they rely on press releases and quick conversations with legislators that favor their pre-set biases. As a result, the public is often in the dark about the "pork stuffing", hidden costs, and full implications of pending legislation. They use the sound-bites of their favored party's arguments, and fail to get the true story out.

But, for the last few days, I've concentrated on dealing with the items that I had to - family, shopping, time spent with my husband (not that I HAD to), and other immediate concerns.

It was like a mini-vacation fro reality.

I must do this again, sometime.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Life Can Be Tough

It's been a rough week. On Tuesday, I received a call from my sister that my elder brother, Mike, had been found dead in his apartment. He likely was there for days before being noticed.

Mike had been battling alcoholism for years. Due to it, he lost his job, his home, and nearly all his friends and family. Periodically, he'd surface, needing to shower or clean his clothing, and my sister or brother would take pity on him and let him in long enough to clear up.

I was spared much of this; by the time he hit the streets, I was living in SC. I was only occasionally present when he surfaced. In 10 years, I doubt I saw him more than 10 times.

He couldn't get along with others at the shelters. He claimed that they "messed with" him, but I suspect that he irritated them quite a bit - he was smart, and could use his intellect to put people down. His smart mouth, even in his youth, got him in a bit of trouble.

When he was in his 20s, he started a science fiction novel. To my knowledge, he never finished more than a few chapters. Could he have, if he had not been drinking? Possibly. My sister finished her book; I'm still trying to find time to get back to mine. In the meantime, I post to my blogs; I've run one for almost a decade. Writing is apparently in the family genes.

Mike never married. He was skittish about arguments; he was uneasy about children. Illness scared him. When my children were hospitalized, he would, briefly, show up, then, abruptly, have to leave. His squeamishness about many of life's trials seemed to be avoidance of pain.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Yet Another Self-Righteous Commenter

I'm steamed.

I went to a sight about the CN shootings, and found a commenter who used his child as a rhetorical weapon against those who disagreed with him.

Mark Dudley, who claims to be in the Army, writes:
...if you want to protect yourselves, why does it have to be with a gun? Is it because others have guns? Is it because it makes you feel powerful?

OOOOH, that's right!  It's ONLY because 'dat big, bad gun compensates me for my weak sense of self that I would prefer to be armed in a confrontation with an armed intruder!  What other reason could there possibly be?

He continues:
How could someone be so ignorant to think that my child's life is worth you keeping your gun? Right.. I agree our gun control laws are terrible. They need to look more like those in Europe, esp . the UK, where gun violence has dramatically decreased since the ban on hand guns was enacted. Let everyone keep his or her rifles and shotguns, but membership in a licensed and sanctioned hunting or shooting club should be mandatory. 

Right.  Because anyone who thinks the government might kick his door down on a pretext is paranoid.

Tell that to those killed by drones - without an indictment, trial, or access to a lawyer.  Mother Jones - a LEFT-WING paper - has more on that.

Tell that to those killed in "mistake" by zealots using no-knock laws.  Google "no knock warrant mistakes" to get a list of over 200,000 hits.
MarkDudley Oh, please!  The UK DOES have violence, both with and without guns - the only thing that came of that is to take the guns from those who would defend their homes and persons against thugs.  They have had gun restrictions for MANY years - even before WWII.  Didn't stop many of the violent from blasting away.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/news/datablog/2012/jul/22/gun-homicides-ownership-world-list

The key facts are:

The US has the highest gun ownership rate in the world - an average of 88 per 100 people. That puts it first in the world for gun ownership - and even the number two country, Yemen, has significantly fewer - 54.8 per 100 people• But the US does not have the worst firearm murder rate - that prize belongs to Honduras, El Salvador and Jamaica. In fact, the US is number 28, with a rate of 2.97 per 100,000 people• Puerto Rico tops the world's table for firearms murders as a percentage of all homicides - 94.8%. It's followed by Sierra Leone in Africa and Saint Kitts and Nevis in the Caribbean

Go to the link to learn more, as well as get the full report.  I would also mention that a significant percentage of those US gun murders are NOT committed by Americans, but by "undocumented immigrants".  Often against OTHER "undocumented immigrants".

I'm NOT anti your protecting your child.  Show me a case where these rampages occur on a "guns-allowed" location, and I'll buy your argument.  They happen specifically where there are NO guns allowed by law-abiding citizens.  The perps can take their time, knowing that there will be no effective resistance.

I'm a small woman (well, at least in height).  I could NOT protect myself against an armed man without a gun to equalize the threat.

So, what you are saying is "Tough luck, toots.  You deserve to die because I have FEELINGS against weapons".

Thanks a lot.  For nothing.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Finally Having Some Down Time That is Truly ALONE Time

The spousal unit is at his part-time job, leaving me free this Saturday.  The thing I really enjoy about having this time alone is the fact that I don't have the TV on all day.

The silence is WONDERFUL!

Without the TV, I can think clearly.  I'm surrounded by noise all day - the students talk non-stop.  Even when they keep the volume down, there is too much noise in the background for me to be able to concentrate.

I'll be making my plans for the day after I finish my coffee - another treat that I haven't enough of lately.

Of course, the news about the shooting in CN is on everyone's mind. It put a damper on the holiday party for our school staff last night.

Once again, the calls for gun control have been blasting everywhere. I don't think they've considered this.  Crazies are going to kill, whether they have guns, knifes, or bricks.

And, by crazies, I don't mean the mentally ill, I mean those so focused on their own self that they see others as "things" to be manipulated.  Those are the ones that are called psychopaths or sociopaths.

Is the answer fewer guns?  I don't think so.  Some of the answer lies in the acceptance that "gun-free" zones aren't.  They just disarm the law-abiding.

I would be perfectly happy to reside in a crime-free, gun-free world (well, as long as government couldn't impose their will by force).  But, as long as violence is an option, I would rather see adults in those schools be able to carry weapons than to leave everyone vulnerable in the event of a shooter.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Some Thoughts About Social Responsibility

I was reading an article about this & that in National Review, and I started thinking about social responsibility.

BNP is demonized for the Gulf Oil Spill. It wasn't intentional. The scope of it was unexpected. They dedicated tremendous amounts of money and manpower to solving the problem. They paid a fine (imposed by fiat by the Obama administration, not the courts, even before the full cost was known). They paid reparations to the communities affected. They acknowledged guilt.

But, they're considered, by the Left, to be irresponsible.

Pick any urban city. In response to a provocation, their inhabitants riot, destroying property not their own, injuring scores of innocent citizens, and creating general chaos.

They never accept responsibility. It's someone else's fault, even though it was their hands, and mouths, causing damage, and egging others on. The damage was predictable. It's happened many times before. The perpetrators do not pay for the clean-up of the damage. They seldom pay for their actions, or are fined for them.

They are considered, by the Left, to have NO responsibility for the damage. It's someone else's fault, preferably Republicans or businessmen.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

What To Do About the Budget Process?

Obama wants to, FIRST, raise taxes.

That's the wrong approach.  Charles Krauthammer agrees with me.

Think about what you do with your own household - when faced with financial reverses, do you immediately start looking for a second job?

No.

Instead, you examine what you are currently spending money on, and look for ways to reduce the expense, or to cut it out altogether.

  • You stop the newspaper, and start reading it online at work.

  • You cut your cable package to the basic, or eliminate it completely.

  • You hold off on new expenses.

  • You buy cheaper cuts of meat; generic foods; bulk supplies at discount suppliers.

  • You completely stop the frills - eating out, entertainment that costs anything, new clothes or furniture.  You buy, if you must, secondhand, or "shop" the curb deposits.


Only AFTER you have cut the monthly outgo to the bone do you consider adding income.  Your first action is to reduce expenses.

The same procedure should be undertaken by the budget-makers.

That is, if this time they will actually MAKE a budget.  Which they haven't in Obama's entire term.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

An Insightful Post

I've long enjoyed Right Wing News' John Hawkins' work.  He is thoughtful and pays attention to the personal motivations underlying the political strife.

This post, on 20 Observations About Human Nature That Liberals Would Disagree With, is quite insightful.  I noted several of them,
2) The more a behavior is rewarded with attention, fame, sympathy or money, the more of it we'll see. We recognize this almost instinctively when it comes to good behaviors, but we also tend to almost habitually block it out when it comes to behaviors we don't want to encourage.

and
19) Greed isn't about wanting to keep what you've earned; it's about wanting goods, products or services that you aren't paying for or haven't earned.

which were some of my favorites.

Note that most of the listed observations have to do with the culture, not politics or religion.

Some Immigration Thoughts

Let's look at what WE, the Americans, need of the new immigrants:

  • They should be self-supporting, or sponsored by someone who IS self-supporting, who will provide a guarantee that they do NOT take government benefits while still a non-citizen.

  • They MUST have at least a high-school diploma.  Preference should be given to those applying that have a college degree.  Statistics say that, if we do allow those who  haven't reached that level in, they are far more likely to be a burden, not a benefit, to our economy.

  • More recent studies have shown that the situation hasn't changed.  We have MANY Americans without specialized skills/college degrees of usefulness, who are unemployed.  Does it make ANY sense to bring in more unskilled laborers?

  • The issue of American citizens, born in this country, whose parents are illegally here, is, indeed, a problem.  I'm generally against the parents staying, once their status is known, unless they are NOT in violation of any laws, including those of using someone else's identity to get work (that's a hard thing, I know, as it's really difficult to get work without committing a crime.  Still, the suffering that the crime causes for the person whose identity is stolen is immense - it wrecks their credit, compromises their medical identity, and can cause them difficulties with the legal system).

  • NO ONE, EVER, who has illegally voted in an American election should be eligible for citizenship, or for residency. And, because I'm all about being fair, anyone who has voted fraudulently (yes, even Granny in FL who also votes absentee in the northern state she came from), should lose their right to vote - FOREVER.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Posting About the Culture

I've long said that the culture is what drives the politics, not the reverse.  Unfortunately, I've acted as though the political part of life was the important part.

With that in mind, I've decided to focus on The Culture, and WHY it has to be resisted.  Naturally, much of my thinking will come out of my Catholic Heritage.

Like Nancy Pelosi and Joy Behar, I was raised Catholic.

That's where we differ.  I still attend church every Sunday, and am currently also spending one evening a week (and some spare time online) learning more about my faith.

Unlike many cultural Catholics, I don't ignore the "inconveniently illiberal" parts of the church.

To that purpose, I've been checking out some Catholic blogs that stand firmly on the side of The Church in the HHS fight.

Among them, Bad Catholic, who writes about specific ways that The Church stands up to the Standard American Culture.

Bad Catholic also writes about nudity - and how the Culture has made men (and women) ashamed of their bodies.  Which, BTW, the Catholic Church never was - did you think all those naked and near-naked statues and pictures in the churches just somehow escaped the attention of The Church?

Bad Catholic also takes on porn - and points to a modern man who rejected it.

He takes on popular thinking about abortion.

If you haven't read Bad Catholic in the past, start now.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Why Black Participation in Baseball is Falling

The central thesis of this is disheartening.
...baseball is a game taught by fathers, while basketball and football are more often taught by peers in pickup games.

Gerald Hall Jr., the director of a youth-baseball program in Washington, D.C., told Milloy: “If you did a survey, I believe you’d find that the one thing average and above-average players have in common is a father. Baseball is, at heart, a father-and-son sport. And if you’re a kid that has nobody to throw to, nobody to talk to, nobody to discipline you in the way that baseball demands, you’re not likely to play the game.

How unbearably sad.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Welfare Benefits for Illegal Aliens?

YES!

The federal government is ACTIVELY promoting applications from NON-citizens.  I couldn't believe that the American government could be so clueless, until I read this.

In one ad from the government, a Spanish-speaking alien is being pushed to apply for benefits, even though she tells them that she doesn't need them.

Imagine - someone who is self-sufficient is being discouraged from continuing to rely on themselves.

Not only that, but the EBT (the "bank card" that is now used for food stamp eligible purchases) is being promoted as reducing fraud, because - wait for it - the users can withdraw money from it in cash.

Get it?  They no longer have to sell the food stamps - which is illegal.  They can - legally - just ask for cash back at the register.  Which has the same effect - getting cash in their hands.  But, now that same action is LEGAL.

Confused?

So was I.

 

Up At Dawn on Thanksgiving

I'm the only one up right now, at my Cleveland house. The habit of getting up at dawn (reinforced this year by the need to rise at 4:30 am every workday) is long-standing.

I'm using this time to catch up on reading, thinking, and planning. It's work best suited to a silent house. Later in the day, every corner will be filled with people and talk.

I'm reading a post on National Review, about gratitude. Multiple people have contributed a few thoughts about thankfulness. It got me thinking about it, too.

I'm thankful that:

    I'm employed - and, at a job that I LIKE. My working situations have not always been so congenial, so I'm doubly thankful that my work is such a pleasure these days.
    My husband is employed - both at a part-time Christmas job, and, as of next Monday, at a teaching job. It's only for the rest of the year - it's a grant position. But, that gets him employed in the school system, and it will enable him to bid for other jobs later in the year.
    All of my kids have a job.
    No one is sick, except the daughter that just had surgery on her foot. And for her, she had insurance to cover the operation.
    I had a nice visit with my sister yesterday.

All this is personal, as are my thanks. I'm crossing my fingers about my country, who is facing an uncertain future. At least, my country is not currently being attacked, like Israel. That country is both being physically attacked, and verbally attacked by a media indignant that Israel dares to defend itself.

We're Past Denial, and Anger, and Bargaining

Benghazi.

I'm still pushing awareness of the whole scandal. It's amazing, even with mention in a debate, some front-page stories, and peripheral intermingling in the Petraeus story, that so many people have no idea what the story was about.

It's time to get serious.

We need to pare down our agenda to the core issues, concerns, and base-building activities.


    Dealing with Identifications issues - illegal aliens using other people's identity, voting fraud, privacy concerns balanced against need to verify identity.

    Bringing the Budget Monster into balance - SOME entitlements are going to have to pare down their cost. We need to cap some entitlement programs - after all, we aren't creating more disabilities, so the numbers of recipients shouldn't be increasing - but they ARE. This needs to stop. Same with many "poverty" programs. We need to base the maximum on what it actually takes to have a PARED-DOWN lifestyle - no internet, ONE phone per household, with limitations on monthly calls/data transfer, NO cable, NO luxuries. Even if the average lifestyle of citizens in the US increases, the amount given to recipients shouldn't change, UNLESS the cost of getting BASIC items changes.
    This is not popular. It will have the usual suspects screaming that this approach is "hateful", "cruel", and, probably, "racist" (even though MOST recipients are white - amazing how nobody objects when THAT word is not capitalized).

    Reforming education - getting the federal government OUT of the scene, uprooting those Leftists from schools, departments of ed, and ed schools. Tie grants, loans, and scholarships to taking majors that actually have a likelihood of making the graduate employable. NO grant money for elementary teachers who don't also take college-level math.

    Base-building - we need to bring in younger people at the local level, into the leadership roles as they qualify for them, and start moving those who won't "bend" out of the hierarchy. No more ORCAs - build the robust apps, AND train those who will use them. But, nothing can replace the door-to-door networking. THAT'S where we need to focus.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Tech & Politics

It's the intersection of my two favorite things.

This article gets into the way tech was used by both Obama and Romney, and how it contributed to the outcome.

It should be read by ALL Conservatives.  We need to start building the infrastructure NOW.

Monday, November 12, 2012

How to Attract the Young to the Conservative Side

This young woman voices some legitimate concerns.

One thing that COULD be done is to get to the leading edge of marijuana legalization.

Understand, I don't like it.  I never used it.  I know those of my generation that were heavily involved generally made little of their lives, at least while it was a large part of those lives.

But, I do understand the attraction of the legalization movement.  With more states getting on board with it, it seems useless to continue with prohibition.

So, legalize, tax, and cross your fingers.

Maybe out best efforts ought to be spent on getting people to consume substances in moderation.  I don't hold out much hope for that, you understand.  In America, moderation is NOT the norm.

I imagine that my grandparents felt much like this in 1933, when Prohibition was due to end.  Resigned, but NOT liking it.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Where to Start Your Education

1)  You should bookmark Front Page Magazine.

The publisher, David Horowitz, is a former Leftist Radical, who knows - WELL - the players and tactics of the Left.  He argues forcefully for Conservative Values.

A nifty idea he had was to have a link to downloadable pamphlets, that you can use, both for self-education, and to subversively spread the growth of conservative principles. Or, you can order in bulk.

2)  Of course, the Gold Standard is National Review.

Originally founded by William Buckley, it has expanded beyond 1 man to be an entertaining, insightful newmagazine.  It has both online and print versions.  As soon as I get my finances in order, I plan to subscribe to the online edition.

3)  What is meant by "buying your vote"?  The Athenians tried that, many years ago.  See how it turned out for them.

4)  Right Wing News

The blog owner periodically runs lists of Conservatives Blogs.  Excellent way to find new content.  Generally good guy.

5)   Breitbart - although the owner is gone (early heart attack), his site continues.

6)  Real Clear Politics - provides links to BOTH Conservative and Liberal sites.

7)  Human Events - I hadn't been following this site, but it was recommended to me.

8)  The Heritage Foundation - I especially recommend their Issues & Research sections.

I'll add to this list as I am able.

Conservative Self-Education

I'm going to be hitting this topic more over the next few months. I agree with many commentators that Conservatives do a poor job of arguing their case.

With that in mind, I'm going to be posting some links to ways you can increase your knowledge of Conservative topics, including:

  • The role of the Educational Establishment in promoting the Leftist Agenda

  • What Conservatives believe

  • Economics for Conservatives

  • Politics from the Ground Up


Let me know if there are any topics you want to see.


Translate Button

For the benefit of any readers who are less-than comfortable with the English language, I've added a Translate Button at the top-right of every post.

No offense meant by this; I am Less-than-comfortable with Spanish, although I can usually make myself understood in an emergency.

Hope this is helpful.

Links for Hispanic-Friendly Resources are also available on the right sidebar.

Look, People! We Are NOT Democrats!

We don't give up and whine that we'll run off to Canada!

We don't follow a defeat by giving up - we re-load (NOT a munitions reference - we're ARMING ourselves with the TRUTH!).

Remember those immortal words of the utterly confused and immoral Blutarsky!

 

Where Are Most of the Media?

Benghazi.

Missing.  They couldn't be bothered with the story before.

They are barely giving it any coverage.

There are just a FEW stories of the attack...

...AFTER the election, of course.

Only the few editorials that made it through focused on the atrocity before the election.

It's embarrassing to have SUCH a spineless media.  They roll over and beg for photo-ops, and to be able to lick the Obama administration's boots.

These are the same people that STILL lionize the Woodward/Bernstein team for their "courage" in bringing down Nixon.

Watergate may have been a scandal, but nobody died.

Unlike Benghazi.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Benghazi

Benghazi.

OK, the election's over. Now, let's get to the bottom of Benghazi.

We were told, the President is anxious to know what happened. Right after the election is over, we were told, he'll work non-stop to find out how that whole mess could have happened.
Well, I'm going to make it easier for him. I'm going to put the word "Benghazi" at the head of EVERY post, email. FB update, Tweet, etc. that I write.

EVERY ONE.

EVERY DAY.

Until the WHOLE truth comes out.

I urge you to do the same.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Education is the Key

And by education, I mean that Conservatives need to put on a whole-hearted effort to educate some essential groups (that will make it possible to win elections at SOME time in the future):

  • Candidates - they need to learn media strategies, and face small groups of conservatives early on, answering questions about touchy topics.  Some of the group needs to play devil's advocate, asking questions from the standpoint of an outraged liberal - "Why do you want to put women back in chains?", "If a woman is raped, why should she have to suffer and give birth to her rapist's child?", and other such impassioned pleas.  They need to learn not to fall back on rhetoric, but to listen, empathize with  the questioner's pain, and to respond in ways that won't make cringe-worthy headlines.

  • Current elected officials - they need to either get out of public office, or do it right.

  • Those wanting to help others seek office (I'm thinking of the effectiveness of the "Clean Gene" McCarthy troops, who made cosmetic improvements, throttled down their screaming, and were able to meet the primary voters in non-threatening terms.

  • Young people - they should be receptive to the idea that they will be toiling for the majority of their lives just to pay off the debt of previous generations.  We need to organize a concentrated effort to counteract the Leftist teaching that permeates schools today.


For all of the above, we need to find someone who will lay out the cash to help make this happen.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Election Day

Yesterday:
ONE (1) day until the election.  I can't WAIT! Nor can anyone else who I talk to.

 
I cautiously anticipate Romney will win.  At least, unless the Nefarious Forces of Vote-Stealing, Vote-Manufacturing, and Funky Voting Machine "Accidents" have their way.

 
It feels like the teachers' lounge has quieted down.  Few are all that involved; most have resigned themselves to acceptance of the outcome.  Unlike the last election, when threats to leave the country were everywhere, this time most seem to be acting like adults.

 
I sense that many are doubtful that their candidate (Obama) will make it.  They should be doubtful - if recent rally activity is any indication, Romney/Ryan will romp to the finish line.  The size of the Obama rallies has been pitiful - the media is reduced to reporting that 12,000 people stadiums are filled to 20,000 capacity.  Their bias is coming back to bite them in the hiney.

 
Like many people, I'm focused on what Romney, and I, can do over the next 4 years (maybe 8) to bring us back from the brink of disaster.  Maybe the Obamanuts aren't concerned about the size of the deficit, but I am.  I can't imagine leaving a debt that large for future generations to handle - it would likely mean a total collapse of the government, and with it, no more Medicaid, Social Security, Disability, Medicare, or any other social service.  I know too many of the Obama supporters think of the Romney supporters as "big meanies" for not blithely writing checks that our banks won't honor.  It's just that they haven't lived through double-digit inflation - I have.  It isn't pretty.

 
When the inflation erodes buying power, the poor and elderly on fixed incomes suffer the most.  Everyone goes into work, wanting - and truly needing - more money to cover basic bills.  But, the business won't have it.  Their paycheck buys less and less; sometimes, the only solution is to charge basic needs. But, the interest is so high, that they soon get into a situation where they are in an endless debt cycle.

 
Soon, everyone is screaming at business (who is also suffering from the same problem - their money buys less each week).  Everyone is looking at someone to make it all better.

 
But, no such person exists.

 
The real answer is to cut back on government spending, and stop borrowing money to run the government.

 
It's not a popular solution.

 
But, it's the only solution that works.

 
And, worse, it takes time to work.  During that time, every critic in the country is screaming for results, YESTERDAY!


November 6, 201


I voted this morning.  My husband was further back in the line, as he slept in a little later.  We kissed good-bye, and cheerfully went about our business - me to work, him to return to home for possible assignment to a day job.

 
I have time today to follow along with election results - it's a Professional Day, which means a slow-paced video conference, followed by group work.  With luck, I'll be able to finish my week's lessons (they're sort of done, but need more detail and I need to pull the resources together, including copying papers).

 
I just read on American Thinker (http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2012/11/geeks_guide_to_election_night.html), that the "toss-up states" those states that could go either way - will close early.  They are:

 
- FL

 
- VA

 
- OH

 
- NH

 
- CO

 
- IA

 
- WI

 
- NV

 
So, watch those states.  They're the ones that will determine the outcome of the election.  With luck, the outcomes will be obvious early on, and we can all go to bed early.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Some Stories Just Take Hold of You

Like Benghazi - initially, just another outrage in a Muslim country.  Aggravated by the fact that it caused the death of 4 people - 1 ambassador (who was the chucklehead that thought it was a good idea to post a known homosexual - however competent - in a country that HATES gays, and will cheerfully execute them?  They might as well have painted a target on his forehead), and 3 other men, who gave their lives to keep him safe.

The men certainly went above and beyond what they had to do, and fully deserve medals for their efforts.

Instead, their families got this gross question from VP Joe Biden:
 Woods said Biden came over to his family and asked in a “loud and boisterous” voice, “Did your son always have balls the size of cue balls?”

Nice way to talk to a grieving family.

/sarc

But, that wasn't the worst part for the family.
The grieving father also described his brief encounter with President Obama during the ceremony for the Libya victims.

“When he finally came over to where we were, I could tell that he was rather conflicted, a person who was not at peace with himself,” Woods said. “Shaking hands with him, quite frankly, was like shaking hands with a dead fish. His face was pointed towards me but he would not look me in the eye, his eyes were over my shoulder.”

“I could tell that he was not sorry,” he added. “He had no remorse.”

Hillary Clinton was apparently still officially clinging to the since-discredited explanation for the attack.
After apologizing for his loss, Woods said Clinton told him that the U.S. would “make sure that the person who made that film is arrested and prosecuted.

The  full interview, including video, is here.

Let me see - does this fully sum up what is known now?

Lest we forget:

Christopher Stevens



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sean Smith



He was a State Dept. employee, computer geek, an avid gamer, and just in the wrong place at the right time.

Glen Doherty



Tyrone Woods


Glen Doherty and Woods, the two former Navy SEALS who were among the four Americans inevitably murdered, allegedly disobeyed orders from superiors to “stand down” in the wake of the attack. Despite being told by higher-ups not to respond, they purportedly decided to go to the main consulate building to help U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens and others who were under siege.

While it was previously known that these men arrived on the scene to provide assistance, the alleged “stand down” orders and the repeatedly-denied requests for military assistance are new developments to a story that seems to be continuously unraveling.

Sorry, Obamanuts, that's NOT what SEALS do.  They do NOT abandon Americans to their deaths.

 

It FINALLY Starts to Make Sense

Many political stories are like icebergs - only a small portion of the whole is above water.  The vast majority is never even seen.

Watergate was like that - we got some tantalizing glimpses of the behind-the-scenes maneuvering, but much of the story stayed hidden.  Even the unveiling of Mark Felt as the long-hid Deep Throat unleashed only a few facts not already known.  It did, however, reveal his vile and tawdry motivations - not to save a country, but to get back at the one who didn't put him in charge of the FBI - a good decision, as it turned out.

Some have since argued that the mastermind behind the entire Watergate affair (including the original burglary) was John Dean.  His wife had roomed, before their marriage, with a known prostitute.  Dean was said to have been concerned that compromising pictures of her existed, and were in the Democratic offices.  Hence, the burglary.

The site Gates of Vienna has been running a multipart series, analyzing what is known about the Benghazi affair, and what part different Obama Administration officials may have had in its happening.  A particularly interesting excerpt is here.

The questions are:  was the Muhammed film trailer produced specifically to start the fires of protest?  Did the protest get out of hand?

Was the original motivation to find a way to justify the release of The Blind Sheik?

I urge you to read it, and judge for yourself.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

10 Days Out From the Election

...and I'm feeling like I can't wait.  I live with an Obama supporter, and it has been difficult, at times.

I do understand that supporter's feelings - it all started with such optimistic hope - that America would begin to relate to each other, not with automatic suspicion based on race, but on a basis of commonality.  We share so many values; the ideals that separate us are fewer than those separating us from other country's cultures.

The hope was that we could all work together to forge an improved America - inclusive, tolerant, and working for the best in America.

That didn't happen.

Very soon after Obama took office, he met with Congressional leaders of both parties.  When the Republicans questioned the amount of spending in his proposals, he replied,

"I won."

His meaning, that, because of the election, he had total say in any spending or managing of the government, without input from the other side, clearly signaled his approach - his way, or the highway.

Later, he was caught on video explaining his thinking further.  He wanted no criticism from Republicans, or of his plans (video at link):
"But I don't want the folks who created the mess to do a lot of talking. I want them to get out of the way so we can clean up the mess. I don't mind cleaning up after them, but don't do a lot of talking."

So, no, Republicans did not "work with him" - they had no reason to think that they would be listened to, and it was clear that open disrespect and churlishness was the norm for the Obama administration.  That signal came from the top.

Still, in that time period, approximately 65% of the population supported his domestic and foreign initiatives.

So, what happened?

Well,  there were some reality checks.  Obama's bow to the Saudi king was NOT well received - Americans do NOT bow to any foreign king, by long tradition.  The criticism stung Obama, I think.  He made a point of bowing to leaders of even minor countries in the months following that gaffe.  I think he did so, trying to convey the idea that there was nothing special about that bow.

But, there was.  President Adams, in his first visit to King George as the American representative (I believe Sec of State), did, in fact, give courtesy bows to the king.  That was as much an attempt to smooth over relations after the Revolutionary War as setting precedent.  Future representatives did NOT bow.

Obama, and the Mrs., were, in fact, quite rude to the Queen and her ambassadors. Giving them cheap DVDs that wouldn't play on British players, gifts for the princes from the WH gift shop, and an Ipod for the Queen - filled with speeches from Obama - and - in the case of Michelle - touching the Queen - putting her arm around her for pictures.  That's a BIG no-no, and against established protocol.  The Queen took it calmly, creating no fuss.  But, surely, the Protocol office must have emphasized that breach to her - why do it?

In country after country, Obama experienced belligerent rants against America - and did not respond, except to say that he was glad that he, personally, hadn't been disrespected.  No defense of America.  In fact, often, Obama apologized for her actions.

More recently, he failed to respond to Iranian protestors, while encouraging the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, Libya, and multiple other Islamic countries.  If he had wanted a takeover of the Middle East by Muslim extremists, he couldn't have acted more obligingly.

By the mid-point of his term, Obama's approval ratings had plunged.  It was a natural result of his own actions, the ridiculously high cost of his programs, and the total failure of them to improve the economy.  People were also quite critical of his foreign policy.

So, his party lost in the elections - big time.  He finally had a Congress and Senate in the hands of the opposing party.

Can you say "we won"?

He did manage to pass legislation.  However, he also took some defeats.  He encountered more criticism and opposition.

The man doesn't take criticism well - he is notoriously thin-skinned.  It brings out the mean and petty in him, and he showed it, on many occasions.

Again, popularity down.

All of this is NOT racism.  It is the norm in American politics.  When you assume that you are above criticism, the American public will remind you - No, you're not.

In the last year, civility has dropped like the sky diver from space.  Both parties have been more mean.  The tone has often been over-the-top nasty.  Even though Obama has many times called for toning it down, his campaign has not hesitated to make the low blow.

  • Claiming that Romney was responsible for killing a woman

  • Claiming that Romney was a felon who did not pay any taxes

  • Claiming that Romney's Bain killed American companies, rather than the truth - they took FAILING companies, and gave them money and a chance to succeed

  • Critiquing Ann Romney's wardrobe - which she paid for herself - as too expensive.  Ignoring the fact that Michelle's clothes were comparably priced, and often donated/sold below cost - a little-known perk for First Ladies.

  • Making anti-Mormon illusions to Romney's faith.  WHAT a coincidence that major newspapers, national news magazines, and a Broadway musical JUST HAPPENED to hit the headlines with Mormon themes at this time.

  • Oh, but religion - OBAMA'S religion - is off-limits.


These are just some random issues that quickly occurred to me.  Other reasons for Obama's fall from grace are:

  • Fast & Furious - as in Watergate, it isn't so much the crime, it's the cover-up

  • Solyndra and other "Green" firms and the connection with Obama donors

  • Foreign donations/violations of election laws in the Obama campaign

  • The rising unrest in the world

  • The growing debt - AND the extent to which we are indebted to China

  • The growing dependency on the government - welfare, food stamps, and other "entitlements" are skyrocketing

  • The widely held perception that Obama is "phoning it in" - just going through the motions


I haven't even brought up the Benghazi attack.  The fallout from that may wind up with some less-than-honest Administration officials facing Federal charges after the election.  Unless Obama wins, in which case, it will all be swept under the rug.

NOW, do you understand why Obama's team treats it as CRUCIAL to win?  Their very freedom may be on the line.

Prepare for VERY dirty attacks in the next 10 days.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Just How Effective is the EC (After Rape) Treatment?

According to the Kids Health site:
About 1 or 2 in every 100 women who use ECPs will become pregnant despite taking ECPs within the recommended amount of time.

Statistically, about 5% - that's 5 out of 100 women - having totally unprotected sex - will conceive in a single act of intercourse.

Other studies have shown that the effective rate of EC is less (that site is using AMA stats):
EC is up to 89 percent effective in preventing pregnancy, depending on how quickly a woman begins the pills, the type of pills taken, and when the sex occurred during the woman’s menstrual cycle.

The state of Illinois has, also, some stats that would seem to back up the AMA stats:
Combined EC pills are about 75 percent effective. Progestin-only EC pills are 89 percent effective if used within 72 hours and 95 percent effective if used within 24 hours.

Why is this such a big deal?  The common perception is that EC pills are a magic treatment that WILL prevent the pregnancy from starting.  There is no easy way to undo the effects of a violent sex assault.  A certain percentage of women will, in fact, become pregnant - about 5%, same as any other single act of unprotected sex.  The way I've seen the statistics on effectiveness thrown around makes me quite suspicious of them - too many people will confuse the numbers, say that if 95% of rape victims don't get pregnant, then the treatment was 95% effective.

In fact, in such a case, the treatment had NO effect - about 5% would have become pregnant in any case.

Another concern is - what about the 95% who WOULDN'T have become pregnant?  They are being given some very powerful hormones that may have long-term side effects.  And, they are being pressured to take that treatment at a VERY vulnerable point in their lives, while they are quite traumatized from the attack.

That isn't exactly what I'd call informed consent.

No More "I'm Sorry IF..."

...YOU were offended".

That phrasing has become the de facto standard for public apologies.  Eva Longoria recently went on record with a similar "apology".  What does it say?

  • I'm NOT sorry if you weren't offended.  In other words, everyone who agrees with me can take comfort that I STILL feel the same way, just can't openly express what I truly feel, for fear of career meltdown or public disapproval.  It's all the fault of those darn Fascists, who won't shut up and accept their lesser place in this New World.

  • The problem is YOU, who chose to take offense.  I'm not to blame, you are, with your prickly sensitivity to a perfectly normal political opinion.  That is, it's normal in MY circles, which, of course, means that ALL rational people will agree with it.

  • I still, arrogantly, feel that I was correct to say it, but also want to avoid the public criticism that accompanies having deliberately, and publicly,  spoken harshly and offensively.  So I carefully crafted the statement, and delivered it knowing that MY people would understand that I didn't mean ANY of this bilge for an instant.  See?  My fingers are crossed behind my back.


What would an Honest-to-God apology sound like?
Recently I was expressing my opinion on a controversial issue.  In the process, I became caught up in the topic, and said some things that were over-the-top.

That's usually what causes the "whoops" moment - people get caught up in the moment, and it just spills out.
Some people heard what I said, and confronted me about it.  They were offended, and said so.

No IF they were offended - they were - they said so.
It wasn't my intent to be offensive.  But I did say it, and, upon reflection, have to agree.  It was an uncalled-for statement.  It was (pick one or more - bigoted, cruel, dismissive, crude, horrible, unfairly partisan, etc.) _______________.

No IF it was, it was - own it.
I am sorry for my action, which was beneath a citizen-activist.  In that role, I should have spoken civilly, not taken the low road.

This part would be truly refreshing - the complete acceptance of guilt for what that person had done.
I can only ask for your forgiveness.

NOT a demand, a request.  And, let's face it - this is America, which has been fairly called "the land of second chances".  We love to be magnanimous, and say, "sure, that's OK, don't give it any more thought".

We are a forgiving people.  Just ask, and most of the time, you WILL be forgiven for your mistakes.  Heck, even in cases of murder, I'm amazed by the people who tell their family member's killer "I forgive you".  I don't believe that I could do it, but I sure do admire those that do.

Other cultures don't understand this - they take our ready acceptance of man's imperfections to be weakness.  In too many of those cultures, they are still fighting a centuries-old war.

So, let's take advantage of our culture's readiness to forgive, and make REAL apologies in the future.

We'll forgive you - that's what we Americans do.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

The Pledge

I've been following this campaign season for the entire time, and have noticed a deterioration of civility - of SOME people on BOTH sides (for now, I'm ignoring the Ron Paulians - but, I WILL be back if they don't reform).  The recent VP debate brought my disgust to the surface.

I don't care who started the disrespect.  I DO care that we all take the first step, without waiting for the other.

Failure to do so puts us in jeopardy of splitting this country in a New Civil War (which is caused, in part, due to not-so-civil behavior).

I propose that all of us who take our politics seriously take a pledge:



I urge everyone to take the Pledge.  I urge you to accept your personal responsibility to change the way politics in this country has gotten to be such a gutter sport.

No saying, "Well, I will AFTER they do it."

In this, we need to set the example.

We can disagree.  But, we MUST be civil.

That civility may allow us to point out that a behavior is a violation of The Pledge, for example, bringing into the campaign personal scandals, not connected to government performance.  Those violations include spreading unproven rumors, something MOST of us have been guilty of, at times.  It would not, however, be a violation to call for a Congressional investigation of a public official's PUBLIC behavior.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Fast & Furious Update - And I'm FURIOUS!

The Congressional probe into the scandal is over, Eric Holder has been largely left non-responsible, and things are back to normal.

Guess who has just returned from abroad?

Kevin O’Reilly, the link between the White House and Operation Fast and Furious.



Read the whole thing, and ask your Congressional Representative to re-open the investigation - FIRST issuing a supoena for Kevin O'Reilly.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Jobs? What Jobs?

The Obama Re-election Team (ORT) is dancing with delight at the new jobs report.  It states that the unemployment number have FINALLY gone under 8%.

The real question is:  have the numbers been "tweaked" to improve the final score?

Sweetie, I don't want to say that the numbers have been massaged, but they just asked for coffee and a cigarette.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

The Difference Between Iraq Deaths and Afghan Deaths

...seems to be the president.

Read these two stories in the NYTimes.  The first, in the Bush era, keeps making its political points, that:

  • War is pointless

  • Blacks are more likely to join than Whites

  • Shows families that are against the war, and think their childrens' service a waste

  • Military is seen as a way to make some money


In other words, the 2,000 milestone deaths are used to push the Anti-Bush narrative.  Several times, Bush is personally mentioned, as though he was the sole reason for the war.

And the racial flames are fanned in this story:
Sept. 5, Specialist Williams, a 20-year-old medic, was killed by a roadside bomb in Tal Afar, Iraq. Mrs. Williams-Smith, 42, is silent no more. Though her oldest living son is in the Navy, and her youngest son wants to join the Marines, she openly rages against the war and President Bush.

"It's time to bring these boys home," said Mrs. Williams-Smith, of Mansfield, Tex. "My feelings for Bush are harsh. He should have taken care of the needs of his own people before going across the ocean to take care of someone else's."

The anger Mrs. Williams-Smith, who is black, feels toward the war is shared by many other African-Americans, according to polls, military officials and experts.

Compare the tone of the NYTimes as the Afghanistan war hits the same milestone - still anti-war, but only 1 mention of the current president.  Most of the article is focused on using the term NATO, rather than American, for the troops.  They are off-loading responsibility for the death to the multinational force.

No references to the troops' families blaming the president personally, as in the first article.

It's amazing - I wonder what the difference could be.

It's almost like it's no longer patriotic to eviscerate the Commander-in-Chief in public anymore.

Hmmm.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

You Want Offensive? You Want Offensive?

How about a new musical?

"Springtime for Islamicists and the Mid-East!"

Filled with the antics of those wacky head-thumpers:

  • Blocking roads to traffic 5 times a day

  • Forcing women - Muslim or not - to veil.  Those refusing will be given the "smiley" - slashing the face from mouth to ear.  They'll veil after THAT!  If they need more persuasion, rape any unaccompanied woman on sight, and invite your Muslim brothers to join in on the FUN!  Any "woman" over the age of 6 is OK for the "sport".

  • Looking for insults to the "Prophet", the Quran, and any aspect of Islam.  If they can't find an insult, MAKE ONE UP!

  • When the "insult" is uncovered, go riot in the streets, being careful to rape, torture, and kill any Christians and Jews - whether they had anything to do with the "insult" or not.

  • Burn the US flag - this is getting tiresome - can't they outsource it to Americans?  We have MANY who would be THRILLED to oblige!

  • Burn a Christian church or home - preferably with people in it.

  • Force an apology from Democratic presidents - it isn't that hard.  If not sure how to do it, check with ex-president Carter.

  • Refuse to accept that apology, however groveling, until accompanied by cash (the better for their leaders to steal it), released terrorists, and bending over for punishment.


NOTE:  As indicated, this does NOT apply to ALL Muslims - just those Islamicist radicals that participate in "street actions" like the above ones mentioned.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Who's Behind the 9/11/12 Attacks?

This article details some of the background.  As the President and Sec. of State say, "Make no mistake" - I'm anxious to see whether or not the eventual retribution gets to this level.  I'm skeptical about that.
The Salafist Nour party unquestionably carries responsibility for the embassy attack in Cairo. These two men should be questioned by authorities. One of them (Bakkar) is actually scheduled to be in the United States in the coming days. Make no mistake; the notion that these riots were spawned by an anti-Islam movie is completely and totally fallacious. It is not about the movie; it is about never letting a crisis go to waste. It is all about intimidating countries into implementing laws designed to extinguish free speech rights. The film is nothing more than a tool to be used to exploit politically correct inclinations.

In the future, pay close attention to the group:

Dar Al-Hekma (House of Wisdom)

This is the extreme group that is one of the ones that would like to make criticism of Islam ILLEGAL.

 

Update on the Ambassador Murder

It appears that government officials may have been involved, according to CBS News.
Wanis al-Sharef, a Libyan Interior Ministry official in Benghazi, said the four Americans were killed when the angry mob, which gathered to protest a U.S.-made film that ridicules Islam's Prophet Muhammad, fired guns and burned down the U.S. consulate in Benghazi.

He said Stevens, 52, and other officials were moved to a second building - deemed safer - after the initial wave of protests at the consulate compound. According to al-Sharef, members of the Libyan security team seem to have indicated to the protesters the building to which the American officials had been relocated, and that building then came under attack.

Stevens, 52, was the first U.S. ambassador to be killed in the line of duty since 1979. A Libyan doctor who says he treated Stevens told the Associated Press Wednesday that the diplomat died of severe asphyxiation and that he tried for 90 minutes to revive him.

Ziad Abu Zeid said Stevens was brought to the Benghazi Medical Center by Libyans Tuesday night with no other Americans, and that initially no one realized he was the ambassador. Abu Zeid said Stevens had "severe asphyxia," apparently from smoke inhalation, causing stomach bleeding, but had no other injuries.

SOMEBODY needs to die - and the more, the merrier.  It isn't retaliation, it is a simple recognition that if we don't, we might as well paint a target on every American's back.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Breaking News Update

From FoxNews:  The Fast & Furious report is out - it targets the persons that directed the operation - NO - Holder isn't mentioned as one of them, but I'm hopeful that the ones in the report will spill their guts.

 

Protestors storm US Embassy in Cairo:  I saw this, and had a sinking feeling - it all does seem like a horrible replay of the Carter Years, doesn't it?

Supposedly, the attack was due to a film that they felt insulted the Prophet - ANYTHING that is said about their "prophet" they consider a grave insult.

The US response:
An embassy operator told CNN that the facility had been cleared of diplomatic personnel earlier Tuesday, ahead of the apparent threat, while Egyptian riot police were called to help secure the area.

The U.S. Embassy said in a statement Tuesday that it "condemns the continuing efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims -- as we condemn efforts to offend believers of all religions."

"Respect for religious beliefs is a cornerstone of American democracy," the statement said. "We firmly reject the actions by those who abuse the universal right of free speech to hurt the religious beliefs of others."

The incident occurred on the 11th anniversary of the September 11 attacks in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania, as crowds gathered in somber remembrance of the nearly 3,000 people killed that day.

It is not clear which film upset the protesters in Cairo.

They hauled down the US flag, and put up a black flag with Arabic writing on it.

I say - either the Egyptian authorities handle it - and by "handle it" I mean return to the embassy, crawling on their knees in apology, take the flag down, allow our people to put ours up, and clean up the grounds.

If not, send in the drones.

And, BTW, FIRE the fools that put out that apologetic bit of nonsense.

Remember That Voter Fraud That Didn't Exist?

A Democratic candidate who voted in two different places just dropped out of the race, citing "personal reasons".

 

Right.

 

Personal reasons - like she is going to face CRIMINAL charges against her person.

Lest We Forget

Who we are remembering:

 
They will be Forever Young

If, seeing the coverage, you begin to despair:

They Found a Safe Haven

This all didn't happen in a vacuum - let us not forget, the enemy is Jihad, and it's adherents.

Osama was NOT the only threat - removing him is NOT an end to the threat.  Eliminating him should mean more than "bragging rights".

Some unsung heroes - on 4 legs.  Another reason for Islamicists to hate dogs.



They are, indeed, man's best friend.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Convention Speech Wordles

I used Wordle to create these graphics.  What they represent is the frequency of use of all words in a body of text.

They form a graphic of what, by repetition, a person thinks is most important.

Below is Obama's Speech (the drab color is NOT a political statement - I just didn't think to change it):



Click on the image to view it in larger form and with more detail.

Here is Romney's Speech:



The contrast is obvious - Obama's speech doesn't seem to have a central focus - although several words are larger, the number of words displayed shows that Obama's message is muddled and not clear.

Romney, in constrast, shows a clear focus - the three largest words are America, American, and Americans.  He is clearly focusing on OUR country.  The word "world" is shown near the center, so he plans to engage with them, but, clearly, his major area of concentration is the USA.

Isn't it nice to have a president who sees his major job is the desires and needs of America's citizens?

Friday, September 7, 2012

Looking Back at a Sad Life

I was avoiding housework following a link, and found this GQ piece on Ted Kennedy.

It's sad to read.  Hard to believe that a man can sink so low.  Worse, that no one cared more about him than their own political well-being.  If they had, maybe there would have been a life-changing intervention before he hit bottom, and wallowed around there for the rest of his life.

The article deals fairly with the various acts and incidents of Ted's life; still, you end up feeling a little sorry for the man that made such a mess of what seemed to be a charmed life.

There's one thing that isn't in the article; Jacqueline Kennedy always spoke kindly about Ted.  That was, in part, due to the way that he assisted her and other family members with helping their children adjust to the sudden deaths of their JFK and RFK.  We sometimes forget that their deaths left 13 children fatherless.  Jackie appreciated that Ted would spend hours on the phone with his nieces and nephews, helping them to cope, as well as the childrens' mothers.

I think of it as one lonely virtue in a world of sins.

Let's Have Some FUN With the Video of Obama's Speech!

Here's the link.

I want everyone to visit it, and hit the Thumbs DOWN button.  It has less than 2,000 votes, so, if we do so, then send the link to everyone on our Facebook pages, and our personal email list, we can probably move that ranking to more DISLIKES than LIKES.

Wouldn't THAT be FUN!

I watched it today (I fell asleep waiting for it to come on - well, the convention was boring, but also I had an early - 7:30 am - interview). I noticed several things:

  • Obama's got only a few gestures - he twirls his hands around his wrists, he puts his fingers against his thumbs and uses the whole hand as a pointing gesture of emphasis,  sometimes he separates the fingers and thumb, but does the same gesture, and he puts his flat palms about 6-10 inches apart, and does a karate chop (sometimes karate chops with fists).  He uses all of them a bit too much - he's clearly been coached by a "speech doctor".  Who wants to make a drinking game - a shot or chug for each time he does his hand calisthenics?

  • I never saw anyone - Black or White - look more Nixonian when he frowns.

  • When he's talking about something that is arguable (some would use the word LIE), he closes his mouth and runs his tongue over his teeth before continuing.  An unconscious indication that he knows he is telling an untruth?

  • Again, he makes that tongue-moving gesture right after he claims that he cut taxes for small businesses.

  • Again, he make that same gesture right after he says, "you elected me to tell you the truth".  I really do think we have our "tell".

  • The applause and cheers, through most of the speech, seem tepid and obligatory.  This is not the frenzied, over-the-top enthusiasm of the last campaign.  This is:  I HAVE to cheer for this guy - the alternative is worse (for me).  Looks like the "spontaneous" excitement of a crowd in a Communist state.


How does imposing new regulations MAKE cars go further on a tank of gas?  MAGIC?  Imposing a regulation simply sets the goal - if it's not achievable, it could KILL the auto industry.

"LESS dependent on foreign than anytime in the last 2 decades"?

This from Forbes:
U.S. crude oil consumption is roughly 7 billion barrels per year, of which approximately 4.5 billion barrels is imported.  Based on data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration, about 24 trillion cubic feet of natural gas per year would be needed to replace the 4.5 billion barrels per year we import.

The U.S. currently produces just under this amount each year.

From the LA Times:
U.S. net petroleum imports have fallen to about 47% of the nation's consumption, down from a record 60.3% in 2005, Energy Information Administration statistics show. It's been 15 years since the nation's reliance on foreign oil has been this low.

Finally, from FactCheck.org, who analyzed a campaign making the same claim:
Obama "boasts that U.S. dependence on foreign oil has declined to below 50 percent, as a net share of total demand, for the first time in more than a decade. That’s true, and increasing U.S. oil production is a factor (despite Republican criticisms that Obama is anti-drilling). But economists say the chief factor is reduced oil consumption, brought on by the recent economic recession."

I'll have more later - I can only take so much of this bilge at one time.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Some Interesting, Funny, and WTF Moments Today

Interesting:  the following graph of costs under different scenarios.



The Funny:  Watching Democrats try to justify their absolute affirmation of women's "Right to Choose", when confronted with other ways people might want to have rights to choose.

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And, finally, WTF?

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Wednesday, September 5, 2012

The DNC Convention

8:47 pm - a Sister is talking about how Obamacare is a GOOD thing.  Sister Simone Campbell, from the Nuns on a Bus tour.

I'm sure that she is a good-hearted person.  I don't believe that she is the last word on how Catholics need to vote.  I don't agree that the Romney/Ryan budget plan is "immoral".

Funny how she worries about the budget, but not about forcing abortion & birth control on people who are morally opposed to it.

It is NOT immoral to plan your spending so you can avoid debt.

8:55 pm - Rahm Emmanuel is being interviewed.  When asked why donors haven't contributed to the Obama campaign, he started stuttering, and made a lame, incoherent answer.

Rahm is implying that Republicans, after the elections when Clinton was president, caved, and the legislation that passed was ALL Clinton's idea.

Huh?

Boy, is he trying to spin.

He says that Obama will have a "broad-stroke, vision" speech, that will totally change this election.  Somehow, the more detailed speeches of Romney and, even more so, Ryan, are NOT visionary.

Rahm is complaining that the Republicans impeached Clinton, voted against the American involvement in Bosnia (he even admits that the vote took place when the troops were "in the air" - so, that would be NOT asking the Congress to declare war?), and "obstructed" Clinton by sending bills to be signed - but were vetoed - that were not acceptable to Clinton.

Rahm is claiming that Obama voted to implement "welfare to work" as a state senator.

I checked, and I thought Rahm was wrong.
President Obama had a convenient change of heart regarding welfare reform when it was time to run for President. In 1998, when he was an Illinois state senator, Obama said:  I was not a huge supporter of the federal plan that was signed in 1996. Having said that, I do think that there is a potential political opportunity that arose out of welfare reform. And that is to desegregate the welfare population—meaning the undeserving poor, black folks in cities, from the working poor—deserving, white, rural as well as suburban.

The same year, he reiterated that “the 1996 legislation I did not entirely agree with and probably would have voted against at the federal level.”

Well, he voted against it, with an executive order this year.

 

Just Who Are the H8rs?

It's not Republicans screaming "bigot"!

It's not Republicans smearing ALL Democrats as "H8rs".

It's not Republicans sneering that "you ALL hate women".

It's not Republicans implying that your chosen candidate is a "felon".

Don't bother Democrats, or their allies, with the FACTS.  They'll TELL you what the "facts" are.

An example of "fact-checking" is this:
A case in point: a perfectly correct statement by Sen. Rand Paul that the average federal employee makes $120,000 a year, while the average private-sector employee makes $60,000.  This was labeled "FALSE," by PoliFact because the figures included benefits.  On salary alone, the folks on the federal payroll only made $31,000 more than their counterparts.

Bold-face mine.

Another instance of "fact-checkers" bias:
If you want a clue about the objectivity of "fact-checkers," take a look at what snopes.com has to say about Barack Obama's claim to have visited 57 states.  It turns out this "a mixture of true and false information."  Why?  Because Barack was obviously tired and meant to say 47, and some obscure, anonymous blogger somewhere claimed that he used this number because there are 57 Islamic states.

If Obama had been a Republican, this would have been labeled as FALSE. 

In the past, I've recommended snopes.com for checking forwarded email's veracity.

No more - their political bias is clear.

Debate Ideas to Consider

I've been watching the DNC convention (yes, it was occasionally painful), and have noticed some talking points that are likely to come up in the debate:

  • Obama talks about "free" contraception.  It is NOT free, as Mitt should point out, but "taxpayer-paid" contraception, as those who don't pay for their own contraception through their insurance premiums will receive them thanks to the taxpayers.

  • Those "tax subsidies" for oil-producers - does Obama mean "reductions in taxes" for legitimate expenses?  Instead of requiring government to "invest" in alternative energy start-ups, why not let the PRIVATE sector do the investing, since that's what they're good at.

  • BTW, IF any money is to be given to alternative energy, it should come from NEW oil and gas leases of public land.  That should encourage the federal government to open up land to oil producers.  And, in effect, the old energy will fund development of new energy.

  • On suspending deportation of "youngsters" who were brought here by their parents - instead of funding new give-aways, how about pointing out that they already received, free of charge, an education through high school?  And that we are willing to let them leave, without penalty - they will have equal opportunity to get a LEGAL visa in the future, the same as any other person in their home country.

  • On gay marriage - is the president willing to stipulate that this will increase the number of people eligible for spousal benefits?  On what grounds?  The real reason for spousal benefits was that, in the past, child-bearing and child-caring responsibilities made a woman temporarily unable to work.  The major cause for special treatment of women in those cases was that pregnancy was unpredictable and could occur without conscious effort to conceive.  That isn't so in any gay relationship - pregnancy has to be planned and specifically desired.

  • Obama still hasn't justified ignoring bankruptcy laws and giving special treatment to the auto unions - one of his BIG campaign contributors.

  • The economy still is teetering on the verge of collapse, with minorities suffering the worst effects.

  • The housing market is still horrible, with many in foreclosure, and mortgagees underwater.

  • Although Obama plans to complete closing down the Afghanistan operation, the region is LESS stable than when he took office.  The Mideast is a volatile mess, and the radical Muslims are in charge.  I'm still flying, but the level of threat makes me very uneasy, and the TSA gives me little confidence that they can handle the threats.

  • The border is still unsecured; the threats are not just Mexican gangs and illegals, but also reports of Islamicists paying coyotes to assist them in crossing the border.

  • Don't forget Fast & Furious.  Obama seems to have.

Reflections on DNC's 1st Night

Most of the speakers were a relative snooze, with a few exceptions:

  • Tammy Duckworth - she's running for Congress, and is a VERY impressive disabled vet.  On the positive side, she should be a strong voice for vets.  On the negative side, she supports the Democratic platform.  Still, a really good speaker, and apparently a remarkable woman.

  • Julian Castro - a good choice for the keynote address.  As he has only been the mayor of San Antonio for 3 years, it will be difficult to predict how he will prosper in the future.  He is a good, although not excellent speaker (he is polished in how he presents his lines, waiting effectively for responses, but, in general, he has little to say that isn't a slogan for the Democratic platform).  I heard no new ideas, or fresh strategies.  Oh, and unlike Christie, little of substance.

  • Michelle Obama - that dress!  As the fashionable would say, FABULOUS!  For once, she left off the boob belt, and the results were great - AND slimming.  Also, she didn't go for her favorite full skirt, and it really minimized her hips and butt.  This is how a First Lady should dress all the time - not trying to set a style, with over-the-top accessories, but with classic lines that actually work with her figure.  As to her speech - VERY well-delivered.  She talked not only about Barack the man, but supported his policies in a positive way.  Unfortunately, the effect will be lost once people realize that the speech wrapped dogs**t is gold wrapping paper.  The economy still sucks, SS and Medicare are broke, and Obamacare will bankrupt the US into dissolution.


The entire night should be used as an example of how to train the noobs.  Generally, they used their time effectively, and spoke with polish.

The polls should show an upward movement for Obama; in contrast, Romney isn't showing much of a post-convention bounce.

I'm not totally trustful of those polls.  They favor those with land-lines - younger people often don't even own a home phone, instead using their cell for all purposes.  So, it's over-sampling the home-owners.

Republicans are probably NOT answering most polls, judging from the people I've talked to - I know that I refuse to answer polls.  I suspect that this election will be fought right down to the finish line, with the results uncertain until the last.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

The American Dunkirk

One of the more amazing incidents in WWII was the make-shift, volunteer-led evacuation of British troops at Dunkirk.  If you've not read about the rescue, click here.

We, in America, on 9/11, had our own volunteer effort to rescue civilians fleeing Manhattan after the attack.  Here's their story.

The Boatlift

You will have tears in your eyes, I promise.

Monday, September 3, 2012

My Blood is Boiling!

 

Irritated at Muslim kvetching about our American troops not treating their Koran respectfully enough (they were burning some papers and terrorist materials, and approximately 100 Korans were mixed in by accident - hey, it IS written in Arabic, which few soldiers read).  The Kabul Press wrote an angry editorial, which is printed here.

My response is in the comments (also written below).
Angry? Bitter that Americans would not give YOUR holy book more respect than Muslims give OUR holy book - which they have burned, confiscated, and torn up. Heck, we shouldn’t give more respect to the Koran than is given to Christians in Muslim countries - where they are kidnapped, raped, beaten, burned alive, and killed via the most horrifying means.

Tough. Their job is to provide military assistance. They do that. They do that, even with the restricting Rules of Engagement (ROE) that they have been forced to follow.

You don’t like it? Too bad.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Thought About the RNC

It was a little slow.  Even the delegates seemed a little sleepy at times.

Ann Romney - for someone who is not a professional speaker, she did just fine - the crowd liked her, and she didn't make a mistake.  She didn't drag out of lot of personal anecdotes, but the Romneys are NOT public emoters.

Chris Christie - for him, low-key, but passionate.  More about him than Romney, but using his story to make some needed points about values, policies, and how to treat people - take note on that last, Dems, before you try to use your standard slash & burn campaign strategies.

Marco Rubio - Boy, is he young!  He spoke well and hit all the Republican high notes.  I didn't know that he was a Tea Party favorite, who trounced Gov. Christ in the primaries.  Likely to have a bright future.  Expect Dems and Liberals to throw money, booze, and women in his path, hoping that he'll bite.

Condi Rice - Nice speech.  I didn't notice the lipstick, but then, I was focused on the substance of the speech, unlike the Dems.

Paul Ryan - Dynamic, passionate, and cool.  For that reason, the Liberals ha

ve spent most of their energy "refuting" his facts in his speech.

From MSNBC (before the breakup):
Fact checkers have had a field day breaking down at least five inaccuracies or misleading elements in Ryan's speech.

Ryan said a GM plant in Wisconsin that President Obama promised to keep open, eventually closed.

But, according to these reporters, that's a LIE.
The Truth: The GM plant closure was announced in June of 2008, when George W. Bush was president. Barack Obama took office in January 2009.

According to  CNS News:
But Ryan is in fact correct. The Janesville GM factory stopped production of SUVs in December 2008 and closed its doors for good in 2009 – less than one year after Obama promised to keep it open for another hundred years.

In his speech in Janesville, then-Sen. Obama said that if elected, he would support retooling the Janesville plant to make energy efficient vehicles. Despite his administration’s carefully shepherding of GM through bankruptcy, the Janesville plant has not been retooled to make anything.

Even though he said he supported retooling, and his government officials oversaw the GM bankruptcy, the Janesville plant was ignored.

Furthermore, although they lay the blame for the plant closing on G. W. Bush - who was President then, the FACT is that Bush didn't make any promises, direct or implied, during the campaign.

Obama did.

So, I'd call this arguable, at worst - which a prudent and responsible press and Democrats - but, I repeat myself - would relegate this to the category of issues that the sides disagrees about - NOT A LIE.

I'll post later on the other disagreements.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

OMZ! Mention of a Certain City...

...located in the southeast corner of Illinois is - wait for it - RACIST!  Because Black people live there.

Unfortunately, my eldest daughter just moved to Chi-OMZ, you almost tricked me into being racist!

Thoughts About the RNC

A little quieter today.  Rick Santorum is talking to the commentators, and is quite charming - much looser and more at ease than he was during the campaign.

Patti Bondi (Attorney General from FL) looks SO much like the actress from Reba that played the 2nd wife (Melissa Peterman).  Fortunately, she isn't as ditzy.

John Thune (R-SD) is talking - doing a good job, very smooth.  He is QUITE tall - former basketball player.

He's good at pacing his speech - Mitt could take a lesson from him.

The crowd must be top-heavy with small businessmen - they cheer most loudly when the phrase "I DID build this" is spoken.

I'm watching PBS coverage - Judy Woodruff and Gwen Ifill.

The commentators are talking about how Republicans are not all on board with Mitt - they seem excited about the prospect of a divided party.  Gwen especially has an ear-to-ear grin on her face.

The talk at the table is about the young people - as a result of the massive numbers that voted in the last election, there are still many who are involved - mostly Liberal, unfortunately.

Both Condi Rice and Paul Ryan were well received - Condi is less polished and a little nervous, I think, but does well.

Paul Ryan was a BIG hit!  He was slightly wonkish, but very telegenic, and with an altar boy earnestness.

Just going to close, but I did want to post a link.

MANY conservatives have mentioned being afraid to "come out of the conservative closet" at work.  This is a MAJOR problem for those of us working in Liberal Strongholds, such as Education.

I post under a concealing name, due to my concern about rabid Liberals, some of whom would delight in seeing a conservative fired or not hired.  Why do I think this?  They've told me about their wishes (not dreaming that I wouldn't agree with either their politics or their vindictiveness).