Friday, March 31, 2006

Political Hack of the Week

How could this week's winner be anyone else then Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney (D-GA)? Of course by now most everyone has heard about McKinney's run in with the U.S. Capitol Police shortly after entering a House building on Wednesday.

Here is a quick re-cap in case you missed it and you do not want to read the entire AP article. It seems that House members do not have to walk through the metal detectors when they enter House buildings. Because of this they wear a lapel pin that indentifies them to the Police as House members. Well apparently McKinney does not like wearing the pin for some reason but according to the article most of the Officers recognize her and allow her to pass. On Wednesday however, the Officer at the security checkpoint did not recognize McKinney and she was asked to stop. McKinney refused. The Officer apparently tried several times verbally to stop McKinney. When this did not work, although the article does not specify I would have to assume, the Officer attempted to physically stop her. At this point McKinney allegedly struck the Officer. I say allegedly because the article states that there are conflicting accounts of what took place and the Officer involved is not allowed to make a statement to the press. However, the U.S. Capitol Police spokesperson said that the incident is under investigation.

To McKinney's credit she did release a statement "regretting the confrontation" and she added, "I know that Capitol Hill Police are securing our safety, and I appreciate the work that they do. I have demonstrated my support for them in the past and I continue to support them now,". Riiiighht.

The most ironic of all things is that this incident occurred on the very day the Democrats released their earth shattering "National Security" plan. Both very laughable events.

Usually I would have jumped dead on this the day it happened but I was really waiting for the results of that continued "investigation". I mean how long could it possibly take? Did she hit the Officer or not? Will charges be filed or not? But then I realized how doubtful it is that this is actually being investigated. I also doubt very seriously whether or not we will hear anything else about this incident. The only thing to come from this will be the mandatory memorization of each House member's face before a Capitol Police Officer can successfully be released from their field training program.

A little extra sidenote for you. This is one of the loons that jumped on the Bush Administration had prior knowledge of the imminent 9/11 attacks but did nothing to stop them because they wanted war bandwagon.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Fighting in Afghanistan

Afghanistan Fighting Deadliest in Months. Just glancing at that headline from this AP article like many Americans do without reading the contents under the title, one starts to think that things are going bad for us in Afghanistan.

Once you read the contents of the article you realize that the title given is certainly appropriate. Recent fighting in Afghanistan has been very deadly, for the Taliban.

The article, at least in my view, attempts to insinuate that things are deteriorating for our troops in Afghanistan. The main thrust of that insinuation is a large Taliban attack on a Coalition base in southern Afghanistan. In the attack one American and one Canadian soldier were killed. 12 Taliban fighters were killed during the assault. The Coalition counterattack that followed killed an additional 20 Taliban fighters and resulted in the destruction of two enemy compounds.

I am certainly not making light of the dead and wounded Coalition troops. I just believe a more fitting title would have been something like "Coalition troops rout Taliban rebels".

U.N. Demands Iran Suspend Nuke Enrichment

The U.N. Security Council demanded Wednesday that Iran suspend uranium enrichment, the first time the powerful body has directly urged Tehran to clear up suspicions that it is seeking nuclear weapons.

Iran remained defiant, maintaining its right to nuclear power but insisting that it was committed to the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty and had no intention of seeking weapons of mass destruction.

"Pressure and threats do not work with Iran. Iran is a country that is allergic to pressure and to threats and intimidation," Iranian Ambassador Javad Zarif said. He later added that "Iran insists on its right to have access to nuclear technology for explicitly peaceful purposes. We will not abandon that claim to our legitimate right."

The 15-nation council unanimously approved a statement that will ask the U.N. nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency, to report back in 30 days on Iran's compliance with demands to stop enriching uranium.

Diplomats portrayed the statement, which is not legally binding, as a first, modest step toward compelling Iran to make clear that its program is for peaceful purposes. The Security Council could eventually impose economic sanctions, though Russia and China say they oppose such tough measures.


If you would like you can read the rest of the article here...

The excerpts that follow are more telling of the impotency of this action...

The council has struggled for three weeks to come up with a written rebuke that would urge Iran to comply with several demands from the board of the IAEA to clear up suspicions about its intentions. Tehran insists its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes

You have got to be kidding. It took them three weeks to come up with this statement?

The text removes language saying that proliferation is a threat to international peace and security. Also gone is a mention that the council is specifically charged under the U.N. charter with addressing such threats.

Russia and China had opposed that language from the start because they wanted nothing in the statement that could automatically trigger council action after 30 days.

"For the time being we have suspicions," Russia's U.N. Ambassador Andrey Denisov said. "So from that point of view, it is like a ladder. If you want to climb up, you must step on the first step, and then the second, and not try to leap."


Why do I have the sinking suspicion that by the time the members of the U.N. agree to reach an important step on that ladder it will be too late?

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

The Results of an Entitlement Mentality

Two big items in the news this week should be a wake up call for Americans. One is the riots in France in response to a more growth friendly labor policy and the other is the mass demonstrations, not yet riots, across the US in response to proposed immigration legislation.

The riots in France are in response to proposed legislation that would allow employers to hold young workers accountable for their performance and have some discretion in who stays and who goes. It is a, God forbid, business-friendly and growth-friendly policy. This attempt at a change in policy is the response to a rapidly imploding French economy and French society. This crisis in France is due to its socialist policies that promote entitlement mentality, mediocrity and stifle economic growth. With less than one percent economic growth for years, France can no longer afford its lavish social policies and has to do something to improve its economy in order to continue to support its entitlement programs. Entitlement programs create an entitlement mentality. Unfortunately, entitlement mentality, by nature, is a mean beast. In short they have created a monster.

Their programs and policies have convinced a generation that they are entitled to guaranteed work and income regardless of qualifications or job performance. You take those policies away and what do you get? That's right, riots in the streets. So what does this have to do with us? Let me offer some examples. I worked in healthcare for years. Raises were not based on merit. Everybody got the same cost of living increase every year, regardless of job performance. This is based on the socialist ideal of equality for all, meaning no matter how worthless a co-worker may be, they are entitled to the same raise you get. It stifles excellence and promotes incompetence. This is widespread policy throughout the public sector and much of the private sector.

How about another example? Here is a quick quiz. Whose job is most at risk, an incompetent government employee who is a female and/or a minority and/or who has a disability, or a competent manager who attempts to fire her? I think you know the answer to this one. Incompetence is rampant in the workplace simply because entitlement programs make it a risky proposition to remove incompetent employees if they are members of any "protected group". Again this promotes incompetence, stifles excellence, creates an entitlement mentality and is counter to economic growth.

So what is the lesson here? The lesson here is that our country will rot from the inside out if we continue these polices. The longer we continue them, the more ingrained the entitlement mentality becomes and the worse the riots will be when somebody finally has the guts to put a stop to it. What we see in France is very likely what we will see in the US if the trend continues. US labor policies are drifting toward the French model, while the French are having to reap what they have sown. If we are not careful we will have a repeat of France's problems on a much larger scale when we are finally forced to put a stop to our own socialist labor policies.

Now for part two of the lesson on entitlement mentality. The protests, including walk outs and obstruction of business operations, in response to proposed immigration reform is an example of the repercussions of ingraining an entitlement mentality in a portion of the population. Policies that have ignored and even rewarded illegal immigration are entitlement programs and put a strain on our society. The price society pays for rampant illegal immigration far outweighs the economic benefits of millions of cheap laborers. But, we have tolerated it for so long it has become expected. People feel like it is a right that they are entitled to. Obviously large numbers of people living in our country both legally and illegally think they and others are entitled to break the law. Now that the rest of the country has demanded change, they take to the streets. In their mind they are entitled to be here simply because that option has been our policy.

So these series of events should be evaluated and understood in the broader context of the ugly side of entitlement policies that promote an entitlement mentality. Once that mentality has been established embarking on social change is a risky proposition, just ask France.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Documents

Have you every wondered why you hear more about some documents than others in the mainstream media? Have you ever wondered why some documents are immediately considered legitimate and authentic while others are immediately dismissed as fraudulent or simply ignored by the press? I have.

For example, who could forget the fraudulent documents regarding the President's military service that were take as gospel by Dan Rather and CBS? They immediately resulted in a 60 Minutes exclusive story. Yet they turned out to be fake and not even good fakes at that. Nobody at CBS bothered to check because they were not interested in the truth. Remember this story broke in late September of 2004, just prior to the 2004 election in November. In case you forgot the story, here is the link.


http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2004/09/08/60II/
main641984.shtml


Then there are other documents that don't seem to get much air time. In fact, the only air time they have gotten in the mainstream media has been just enough to dismiss them as fakes without any clear explanation as to how this conclusion was drawn. These documents come from the millions that have been discovered in the aftermath of combat in Iraq and Afghanistan. They are the ones that reveal more evidence regarding Saddam's terror ties. Recent documents have been uncovered that further indicate Saddam had global terror ties, but these are not the first and they have not gotten any more attention by the mainstream press than previous ones. Even the European intelligence documents, verified by the 9/11 Commission http://
www.gpoaccess.gov/911/index.html
, that found the 9/11 terrorist, Atta, met with Iraqi intelligence officers have barely been mentioned in the press.

So, why is there no 60 Minutes episode on all the compelling documents coming out of the war on terror? Well, the mainstream media has feverishly tried to hide any connection between Saddam and global terrorism. They have sought to paint Saddam as an isolated tyrant that was not a threat to the U.S. This has been done in an effort to paint the picture of an unnecessary, illegitimate war. When documents arise that point to a direct link between Saddam and global terrorism, then this distortion of the facts perpetuated by the media can no longer be credible. So pertinent information on the legitimacy of the war is kept out of the limelight, so that the press can continue to mislead the populous to push their own political agendas.

OK, I think I have made my point but let's talk documents. Let me first say that I don't know if any of them are real or fraudulent. I do know that they have all been under much more scrutiny in regard to their authenticity than the Rather documents. I have provided a sample of articles on the issue for your reading pleasure, so you can make informed decisions regarding Saddam and the global war on terror based on documents that you probably have not heard much about.


http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/
Public/Articles/
000/000/006/
550kmbzd.asp?pg=1



http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2003/12/14/wterr14.xml&sSheet=/portal/2003/12/14/
ixportaltop.
html


http://www.cnsnews.com/ViewNation.asp?
Page=%5CNation%5Carchive%5C200410%5CNAT20041011a.html


http://www.townhall.com/opinion/columns/
WThomasSmithJr/2006/01/16/182446.html



If you are a reasonable person and are open-minded, it should obvious that the documents gathered over the years implicate Saddam as being a player in international terrorism. This is why I had to dig deep and look hard to get information on them. Don't expect a 60 Minutes episode anytime soon.

Friday, March 24, 2006

Quote of the Week

"The man who reads nothing at all is better educated than the man who reads nothing but newspapers."

Thomas Jefferson

Political Hack of the Week




And the winner is...Hillary "I will say anything or do anything to get elected President" Clinton.

The "distinguished" Senator from Arkansas, I mean New York, with a terrible case of Bill envy wins the award this week for the following statement about the recent immigration bill passed by the House..

"And it is certainly not in keeping with my understanding of the scriptures, because this bill would literally criminalize the Good Samaritan and probably even Jesus himself. We want the outcome to be that they're on the wrong side of the politics, as well as on the wrong side as history and American values."

The term flip-flop is an understatement at best since she has come out in the past as being against illegal immigrants and advocated allocating more resources for the Border Patrol. Mrs. Clinton's hypocrisy knows no bounds, but then again that has long been a well known fact.

Clinton is in serious trouble with the left-wing loony base for the faux hawkish stance she took in support of the War on Terror. Of course many of us know that was just a sad attempt to both look tough and concerned with National Security as well as a means to court votes from moderates.

Mrs. Clinton is between a rock and a hard place. She knows that she cannot win the Presidential race running as the left-wing moonbat that she is but not many people have been fooled by her political "shift" to the center. The left-wing loonies being, well loony, cannot even allow themselves to accept her ruse. Instead, they have issued statement after statement admonishing her for voting for the war in Iraq and not being more left-wing. This problem has prompted her to make outlandish statements from time to time, like the one above and like the "plantation" statement, in an attempt to make the loonies happy.

It is extremely funny how several years of work trying to fool millions of moderates into thinking she is a centrist is ruined by her affliction with left-wing tourette's syndrome.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Political Hack of the Week

This week's political hack winner is the socialist senator from Wisconsin Russ Feingold. Feingold is another one of those hacks that could have won this award many times and will certainly be in contention for many weeks to come. He surpasses the rest of the competition this week for calling for a Senate censure of President Bush for his NSA wiretapping program.

This is the jerk that not only berated two of the most qualified Supreme Court nominees during their confirmation hearings but he is also the only Senator to vote against the Patriot Act when it was initially brought up for a vote. He also led the coalition of the weak that stood in the way of renewal of the Act that led to it being weakened and then was one of 10 that voted against passage. Feingold is also the only Senator to call for a specific timetable for withdrawal of our troops.

Today in a fit of political grandstanding in the lead up to his '08 Presidential bid he calls for the Senate to censure the President. Even though the NSA wiretapping controversy has failed at every liberal attempt to gain traction in terms of public outrage this hack continues to assert that the President has broken the law and misled the public. The five page resolution is scheduled for introduction on Monday. I agree with Senator Bill Frist when he said that the proposal was "a crazy political move."

An economic socialist with no clue on national security. Here's to hoping he wins the democrat nomination for '08.

Quote of the Week

"Nothing ever comes to one, that is worth having, except as a result of hard work."

Booker T. Washington

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Lt. Col. Grossman on Sheep, Wolves and Sheepdogs

"One Vietnam veteran, an old retired colonel, once said this to me: 'Most of the people in our society are sheep. They are kind, gentle, productive creatures who can only hurt one another by accident...Then there are the wolves,' the old war veteran said, 'and the wolves feed on the sheep without mercy.' Do you believe there are wolves out there who will feed on the flock without mercy? You better believe it. There are evil men in this world and they are capable of evil deeds. The moment you forget that or pretend it is not so, you become a sheep. There is no safety in denial...Then there are sheepdogs,' he went on, 'and I'm a sheepdog. I live to protect the flock and confront the wolf.'

...If you have no capacity for violence then you are a healthy productive citizen: a sheep. If you have a capacity for violence and no empathy for your fellow citizens, then you have defined an aggressive sociopath--a wolf. But what if you have a capacity for violence, and a deep love for your fellow citizens? Then you are a sheepdog, a warrior, someone who is walking the hero's path. Someone who can walk into the heart of darkness, into the universal human phobia, and walk out unscathed...

Let me expand on this old soldier's excellent model of the sheep, wolves, and sheepdogs. We know that the sheep live in denial; that is what makes them sheep. They do not want to believe that there is evil in the world. They can accept the fact that fires can happen, which is why they want fire extinguishers, fire sprinklers, fire alarms and fire exits throughout their kids' schools. But many of them are outraged at the idea of putting an armed police officer in their kid's school. Our children are dozens of times more likely to be killed, and thousands of times more likely to be seriously injured, by school violence than by school fires, but the sheep's only response to the possibility of violence is denial. The idea of someone coming to kill or harm their children is just too hard, so they choose the path of denial.

The sheep generally do not like the sheepdog. He looks a lot like the wolf. He has fangs and the capacity for violence. The difference, though, is that the sheepdog must not, cannot and will not ever harm the sheep. Any sheepdog that intentionally harms the lowliest little lamb will be punished and removed. The world cannot work any other way, at least not in a representative democracy or a republic such as ours.

Still, the sheepdog disturbs the sheep. He is a constant reminder that there are wolves in the land. They would prefer that he didn't tell them where to go, or give them traffic tickets, or stand at the ready in our airports in camouflage fatigues holding an M-16. The sheep would much rather have the sheepdog cash in his fangs, spray paint himself white, and go, "Baa." Until the wolf shows up. Then the entire flock tries desperately to hide behind one lonely sheepdog...

Understand that there is nothing morally superior about being a sheepdog; it is just what you choose to be. Also understand that a sheepdog is a funny critter: He is always sniffing around out on the perimeter, checking the breeze, barking at things that go bump in the night, and yearning for a righteous battle. That is, the young sheepdogs yearn for a righteous battle. The old sheepdogs are a little older and wiser, but they move to the sound of the guns when needed right along with the young ones.

Here is how the sheep and the sheepdog think differently. The sheep pretend the wolf will never come, but the sheepdog lives for that day. After the attacks on September 11, 2001, most of the sheep, that is, most citizens in America said, 'Thank God I wasn't on one of those planes.' The sheepdogs, the warriors, said, 'Dear God, I wish I could have been on one of those planes. Maybe I could have made a difference.' When you are truly transformed into a warrior and have truly invested yourself into warriorhood, you want to be there. You want to be able to make a difference.

While there is nothing morally superior about the sheepdog, the warrior, he does have one real advantage -- only one. He is able to survive and thrive in an environment that destroys 98 percent of the population."

Lt. Col. David Grossman from The Bulletproof Mind

Thursday, March 09, 2006

A War That Is "Going Poorly"

I am going to analyze the current situation in Iraq from purely a numbers perspective in the context of history, of course. We are going to dispense with all the extraneous issues that cloud people's thought processes. This includes the reasons for going to war in Iraq. Regardless of where you stand on this issue, it is in the past and we have to deal with the here and now. So the battle of over it being a right vs. wrong decision is for another place and time. The reconstruction of Iraq is another issue and we will save this for another day and time, indeed. These issues are interesting and worthy of debate because all is not well in Iraq. For now, I want to talk about things "going poorly" strictly from a numbers perspective.

The media uses the phrase "going poorly" all the time in statements like this: "The American people have now become less supportive of the war and President Bush because things are going poorly in Iraq." So what does this really mean in a combat sense versus a mainstream media sense?

"Going poorly" simply means, in the medias lexicon, that people are dying and that we are still there. Fair enough right? I mean ideally we would not be there, nobody would be dying and everybody would all join hands and sing Kumbaya. But a war going poorly indicates, to me, it is not the fact that we are at war, but that the war is going awry and more people are dying than should be expected.

We have been at war for 3 years. After the first few weeks, this war became an urban, guerilla war. Anybody will tell you that this is the hardest to fight, hardest to defend against and hardest to win. It is even harder to maintain troop morale in this type of war. We have lost 2,306 brave, honorable and selfless Americans and every loss is one we feel. I don't know how many terrorists we kill everyday and have killed, for some reason that number is not flashed on the TV screen every night. I do know that is exponentially higher than our own casualties, based on my readings and reports from individuals I know who have been in the mix.

So here we are in the worst kind of war, if your boots are on the ground. Maybe that is why they say things are "going poorly". We are averaging approximately 2.3 soldiers/marines/airmen/sailors deaths daily. That's "going poorly" for sure if you are one of those casualties or a family member but let's stay focused on the war, not the tragedies that are the story of every war. That 2.3 death rate strikes me as an extremely low number considering the type of war we are fighting and the number of troops in theatre. In 2003 total casualties (dead and wounded) were 2,409, in 2004 the count was 7,989, in 2005 it was 5,944 and in 2006 we are at 311. If things continue to go as "poorly" as they have so far this year, we will have a total casualty count of roughly 1,659 for the year 2006. That would be an all time low. The overall low casualty count is indicative of a highly skilled fighting force doing things right and making progress.

Now for a little perspective, between 1950 and 1953 we had a total casualty count of 169,365 with over 54,000 deaths in Korea. Yeah, it went "poorly" too, but somehow we managed to suck it up and accomplish the mission. Guess what else, we are still there!

What of morale? As I mentioned, it is very hard to sustain morale in war, especially a counter-insurgency guerilla war. It is even harder when a large portion of your country is trying their best to undermine your efforts and turn you into the bad guys. Just ask the Viet Nam vets. Re-enlistment rates are at an all time high. What is this all about? Is it all the money Uncle Sam offering? I am sure that sweetens the deal but the bottom line is, even with the war "going poorly", the folks in combat want to stay. That is the biggest indicator of troop morale and troop morale is a good barometer of how things are going on the ground.

What about Iraqi civilian casualties? Those numbers are flashed on screen almost as much as our own dead, but tend to be very inconsistent, so I really don't know. The last I read was around 35,000 over the 3 year period. Things are definitely "going poorly" on that end too. Many of those were the direct result of US military action, especially early in the war with the numerous air strikes by US planes. Now most of the civilian deaths are the results of enemy terrorists, the same ones our troops are fighting. But surely there would have been fewer civilian deaths if we were not there, right?

Of 250 reported mass grave sites from Saddam's regime, 40 have been examined so far. Conservative estimates are that over 200,000 civilians were executed, gassed or bombed by Saddam. Sounds like things have been "going poorly" for civilians for the past 20 years in Iraq.

Now back to the 1950's, there were between 3.5 and 4 million civilian casualties resulting from the Korean War. It was definitely "going poorly", none-the-less we stuck it out and so did the South Koreans.

So are things "going poorly" in Iraq? Yes, things go poorly in all wars and Iraq is not exception. I would argue that things have gone much more poorly in past wars in regard to US combat casualties, troop morale and civilian casualties, yet we managed to have the intestinal fortitude as a nation to push ahead an accomplish the mission no matter how "poorly" things were going. The one time we did not was Viet Nam. That was simply because of the lack of popular support for a war that was "going poorly".

What really determines success is desire for success, no matter how "poorly" things are going. I argue that things could be going, and historically have gone, much more poorly and we have managed to prevail with the support of the American citizenry. The one time we lacked the support of the citizenry we failed to accomplish the mission. All wars go poorly, it is the nature of the beast and no reason to quit.

Monday, March 06, 2006

Stubborn Facts in the Wake of a Storm

As I pondered this week's quote of the week by John Adams, I decided it was time to provide some important facts. These facts have been ignored because they contradict all the race-baiting propaganda that was dished out immediately following Hurricane Katrina. As usual, the sources of that propaganda are not interested in the truth. They are only interested in reinforcing their skewed notions about American society and defeating their political opposition, while promoting agendas that are out of touch with reality.

How many times did you hear the handwringing about only poor blacks being the victims of Hurricane Katrina? How many times were government officials accused of racism? How often was this storm and the horrible aftermath used to promote the agendas of opportunists like Jessie Jackson. Let me count the ways this disaster was used a political tool to further divide America. Well, here are some facts.

New Orleans, pre-Katrina, had a black population that comprised around 67% of the total population. Of the 910 bodies of victims examined by the morgue, 53% were black and 43% were white (Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals, 2/23/06). The math is not hard here. A disproportionately high number of whites died and a disproportionately low number of blacks died. Storms do not discriminate.

The opportunistic use of any crisis, by those with political motivations, to divide this nation instead of unifying it frankly sickens me. Americans, regardless of race, gender, political party etc., have historically been characterized by our ability to unite and perservere in a time of crisis. This is being changed by those in the mainstream media, radical political activists, the Hollywood crowd, academics and those in political office, all who hate their political opposition more than they love their country and its citizenry. Katrina is just one example where facts are ignored because they don't support an agenda. This agenda includes the division of America, in the form of identity politics, and peddling victimhood and entitlement mentality. It includes eliminating the concept of personal responsibility and using blame as a political tool.

Katrina was a horrible natural disaster and we are still dealing with the effects of this disaster. Victims included rich and poor, black white and Hispanic but they are/were all Americans. Those of us with the means have helped and should continue to help out our fellow citizens until the crisis is over. This is the American way.

So there you have it, a few facts. These facts teach us a lot; too bad they are being ignored. In the words of President Adams, "...they are stubborn things...."

Academia, the Taliban and Military Recruiters

I awoke to the news this morning that the Supreme Court unanimously ruled that universities that accept federal funds must allow military recruiters on campus. I am sure there will be outrage among the academic elite who so despise the American military. Are these harsh words warranted? Yes, I speak from experience. Let me give you some examples.

A took a class under a highly regarded professor recently, a Yale alumnus I might add. Every class was a lecture in how he was a socialist, how evil the Bush administration is and how much the world hates us. He made no attempts to hide his disdain for the US military either. He stated,"The American military consists of the dregs of American society."

Upon being challenged, he explained himself by saying that when he was in Iraq (getting paid lots of money by the US government) these were the "idiots" he was afraid were going to shoot him. My response, "Did they shoot you? Did they even shoot at you?"

The answer was of course a muffled "no". I informed him that he was xenophobic, prejudice; a look of both confusion and anger crossed his face. The look said,'What xenophobic! Prejudice! But I am a liberal, I am open minded by default, how dare you!' Wisely he shook his head and said nothing. I then reminded him that these "dregs of American society" were single handedly responsible for pulling off the largest rescue operation in the history of the world during hurricane Katrina, a topic he so loved to talk about in class. I also reminded him that if he were ever kidnapped in Iraq, he would pray every night that some of these dregs would kick in the door and bring him to safety. I finished by asking him if he knows anyone in the military; the answer was no.

Another example is of a classmate, a graduate student. We got into a discussion about the military and she stated, "...Well they only want the stupidest people possible so they can brainwash them."

I responded by asking what she thought about recruiters and ROTC units on campus. Of course, she was opposed to it. So I inquired, as I was a bit confused, why if one of her beefs with the military was that, as she perceived them, they were all stupid, why wouldn't she want them on campus recruiting the people so enlightened as her. Silence, crickets chirping. I asked her if she new anyone in the military; the answer was no.

The point is that academic elites hate the US military, the one that protects their academic freedom. When pressed they usually express a disdain for war and violence and say they associate the US military with that. Understandable, I guess, in some idealistic, unrealistic way. That of course is how their reasoning or lack thereof is formulated, out of idealism and not reality. This is why military recruiters are banned from campuses I assume. Academics' harsh words about the military, however never seem to be about some intellectual disdain for war, but usually resemble a trailer park discussion about one's mamma's boyfriend's sister. In other words, they really like to talk trash about the members of the military in such away that has nothing to do with the reasons they give for loathing the institution.

Here is the problem. Other practices indicate a double standard in academia regarding the disdain of all things violent. The recent well-publicized case of the Taliban official at Yale is a perfect example. Here is a man with literally a fourth grade education who was a high ranking member of the Taliban regime. This regime is responsible for unspeakable acts of violence against civilians and severe violent oppression of women. Thousands of young American citizens who dream of attending this university are turned down every year in spite of stellar academic records and three times as many years in school. When officials from Yale were asked why they selected this guy, their response was that Harvard got the last one like this that came along and there was no way Yale was going to let this one slip through.

So what is going on here? Academia says one thing and does another. They supposedly are anti-violence and anti-war, so they ban military recruiters and ROTC units from campus. Yet they embrace a radical terrorist who represents one of the most violent regimes in modern history and are proud of it. Why?

Academics (and I am generalizing here but I can because most are from the far Left) loath the United States. They hate the principles that this country was founded on-capitalism, the American work ethic, traditional values, national unity. You know, all the things that have made the country a place where everybody in the world wants to come and live. A place of opportunity for those coming ready to work for it. The American military is a symbol of America and all that it is, not just death, violence and war. So at some level these folks probably have a disdain for violence, at least any carried out by Americans. But it is not because of some high moral ground on which they stand; it is due to a disdain for the America that I know and love and I see slipping away as a result of many of the policies touted by academic elites. They like to talk trash about their country, and those who serve it are prime targets.

So, I think I know why there is so much bad mouthing of the American military personnel and I have discussed this above. So what about this Taliban character? Well, this is simply a case of an institution trying to be so "open-minded" their brains fall out. "Hey everybody! Look at us, we are inclusive, we embrace diversity look at our token Muslim terrorist!" diversity trumps aversion to violence and common sense any day of the week in academia.

I congratulate the member of the US Supreme Court, all of them, for exercising a little common sense in their decision. America will be a better place as a result.

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Political Hack of the Week

For two weeks running the winner of the Political Hack of the Week award is Mr. Jimmy "I love third world dictators" Carter. He wins this award for siding with countries with more than dubious records in the area of human rights and against the United States and our ambassador to the U.N. John Bolton.

The controversy of course stems from Bolton's desire to see the Human Rights Council reformed and for the five members of Security Council to form the foundation of the council. Carter has taken exception with this proposal. It seems he promised countries like Pakistan, Egypt, and Cuba that this would not happen and that the United States would not dominate this council. He even went so far as to complain to Secretary of State Condolezza Rice and hopes that the United States proposal is defeated in a vote.

It is not like these countries that form the council now, countries as stated earlier with less than stellar records in human rights, have contributed anything to the world in advancing these rights. To say that the entire council has been a joke would be an understatement. To say that Jimmy Carter is a joke would be an understatement. Just what makes him believe that he has the authority to promise anything to anybody?

As much as I would like for this irrelavent political hack to fade away into obscurity it just is not going to happen. He keeps popping up like a bad irritating cold sore trying to make the American people forget that he was one of the worst presidents to ever occupy the White House. He will be and has been as unsuccessful in that endeavor as he was as president. In his bid to remain relevant at any cost he has surpassed hack and has now entered into moonbat status.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Quote of the Week

Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passion, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.

John Adams

Why Johnny Can't Read (A Map)

I have the opportunity to teach college students. One thing I like to do, because it is relevant to the class, is have them match a list of 20 well-known countries to a blank map. The results are usually disappointing. Most students get 5-8 correct; less than 1% get them all right. Let's face it, high schools and colleges are not teaching students geography. They are teaching geography courses, apparently, as we have seen with the recent controversial ranting of Jay Bennish, a geography "teacher" in Colorado. Mr. Bennish uses his class as a forum to spread his radical political beliefs. This has been mainstream in universities for sometime and now it is the case in public high schools.

Let me first say that I am for freedom of speech. I am also for people doing the jobs for which they have been paid. This does not include spewing radical, distortions of reality by wingnuts from either the far Left or the far Right. Educators are there to educate, as objectively as possible, and not to indoctrinate. That is what we, the tax payers, pay them to do.

So what about freedom of speech? Well, let me put it in terms we all can understand. Let's say I am a salesman. In my professional interactions with clients I spend time preaching the Gospel to them and trying to get them to repent, instead of selling the product I am being paid to sell. I get fired. I have the right to say whatever I want (and practice my religion) without fear of being tossed in jail or executed. I also have to take responsibility for exercising that right and deal with the consequences of exercising that right.

So Mr. Bennish has been allowed to exercise his right of free speech and will not be prosecuted by law. This is what free speech is all about. He will have to be held accountable in regard to his job performance and I have a suggestion on how to do this. Give his students my simple little geography quiz. If they pass, he keeps his job; if they don't, he walks.

It is time taxpayers and tuition payers start holding all educators accountable for doing their jobs and put an end to the radical, ideological indoctrination that is quickly replacing education.

Linked at Stop the ACLU

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Perspective

Over the past few years since 9/11 there have been many arguments for and against war. There have been even more arguments about how best to honor the service of our troops. The conservatives believe that we honor the troops by supporting the President and the mission. Liberals believe we can best honor them by bringing them home immediately. Both sides steadfast in committment to their beliefs. With the exception of the lunatics on both sides who take the arguments to the extreme, both have their merit.

During all of the arguing does either side truly take time and think about the veterans of these campaigns? Sure we thank them for their service and we thank them for their sacrifice. In many cases we thank them for doing something that hopefully our children will never have to do. But do we have empathy? Can we even pretend to empathize? Not many of us can. Only those that have experienced combat can truly understand.

I am not a member of the Armed Services nor am I a combat veteran. However, in my current line of work I have witnessed many tragic scenes. Scenes that I cannot forget nor talk about unless to others in my profession that understand. The talks are rarely theraputic. In our bravado talking points are picked out from the scenes that can be told with an air of jocularity. For those outside of my profession it is quite hard for anyone to understand why we do this. Suffice it to say it is much easier to laugh than to cry.

Recently my job brought me into contact with a veteran of the Iraq War. A young Marine that out of uniform looked like any other early twenty something. Hardly the picture of a warrior and nothing like the image of our troops, in full combat gear, emblazoned across our television screens every night. During our time together we had a very lengthy conversation, not about anything important just general conversation. At one point during the talk this young man became very quiet as he stared at the blue tile floor of the room we were occupying. He quietly, almost imperceptibly muttered the words "blue tile floor". I excused myself and asked him to repeat what he had said. He repeated the words "blue tile floor." He stood up still staring at the floor and backed against the wall. "In Iraq, me, my Staff Sergeant, and another buddy were in a room with a blue tile floor. There was a guy in an adjacent room with an AK trying to shoot us. He couldn't get enough angle on us and the bullets were hitting a cinder block wall just like this one. I remember there were concrete chips hitting me in the face." As he sat back down in his chair still staring at the blue tile floor he said, "my Staff Sergeant got us out of there, but my other buddy...he...he got killed later. I haven't thought about that...I haven't thought...until I saw this blue floor." He kind of half laughed, half sighed to himself and softly said, "blue tile floor".

The pause that occurred after his story seemed like an eternity. Me, not knowing what to say and he, still lost in his thoughts. He suddenly seemed to come back to the present and he apologized to me. He said, "guys I'm sorry you don't want to hear anything about that." Although still taken aback I quickly told him that there was no need for an apology and I profusely thanked him for his service. Even as I uttered the words that were meant to assure him of my gratitude I noticed the complete and utter hollowness of my statement. Rest assured my gratitude is truly sincere. After witnessing a moment like that the words just did not seem sufficient. Not a day has gone by since meeting this young man that I have not thought about that night.

There is no doubt that each of us should express our gratitude to these brave men and women. There is no doubt in my mind that one of the best ways to do this is to support the President and the mission. From now on I hope that each of you after reading this will do as I have done after meeting that young Marine. I hope that when you are arguing with your favorite liberal or conservative about the merits of our efforts in the Middle East and against Terrorism that you temper your thoughts with the realization that this is not a game of Risk. Although I believe that the cause is noble and necessary the fact remains that people are dying and lives will forever be affected. Not all scars are physical and sometimes the pain doesn't go away. To our veterans of the Afghanistan and Iraq campaigns, it is OK to remember and I for one don't mind listening.

Linked at Stuck on Stupid and Blue Star Chronicles and Pirate's Cove and Mudville Gazette