Thursday, February 28, 2008

Obama Double Talking to Americans and Canadians?

How far is a candidate willing to go to become President? Will a candidate say one thing to the American public and something else altogether to representatives from other nations?

During last Tuesday night's Cleveland, Ohio, debates, Barack Obama said that he felt that the North American Free Trade Agreement would be renegotiated if he's elected President, in response to Hillary Clinton's statement that she would "back out" of the agreement if it wasn't renegotiated to her satisfaction in six months time with her as President. Obama said that he thought the renegotiations could be conducted using the United States option to withdraw from the agreement.

But is that the whole of the story? According to Canada's CTV, it's not the story one of Obama's senior campaign members told Canadian Ambassador to the U.S., Michael Wilson.

The Obama insider reportedly told the ambassador, "Don't worry[/url] -- it's just campaign rhetoric, it's not serious," CTV reported.

CTV reported that the Obama campaign's message to Wilson was taken as "completely authentic" by the Canadian government.

What will this mean for the Obama campaign? Perhaps nothing, so long as there are faintings and awe-inspiring speeches of change. It does go to show, however, how far candidates can be willing to go in their pursuit for the power of the office of the President.

Once and Always, an American Fighting Man


Secret No More: Harry Deployed In Afghanistan Since December

Despite a months long media blackout, the word is now out: Prince Harry of England is in Afghanistan on deployment. Harry, 23, has been on deployment in the dangerous Helmand region of southern Afghanistan since December. This deployment came seven months after initial plans for his deployment were canceled due to threats to kidnap him made by Iraqi and Taliban contingents.

News of his deployment came out despite an agreement by British authorities and select members of the international media not to release the information that he was in Afghanistan until after the completion of his deployment, affording the young prince the opportunity to carry out his duties in the Royal Army.

Harry has been responsible for calling in air strikes against Taliban positions, has conducted foot patrols through villages and has fired on suspected enemy combatants, pool photographs and footage have shown.

Before he was deployed, Harry, the son of Prince Charles and deceased Princess Diana, told reporters that he sometimes wished he was not a royal as it made it difficult to do things that he enjoyed, including fighting in the army.

General of the army Richard Dannatt has issued a statement expressing his disappointment in the violation of the rare agreement with the normally "free-for-all" media, and he, his chief of staff, and operational commanders will evaluate whether Harry's deployment will continue. Dannatt also commented that Harry's military service had been "exemplary," and that Harry has been a "model soldier," garnering for himself no special treatment in his role as a soldier due to his position as third in line of succession to the British throne.

Give'em HELL, Harry!

Once and Always, an American Fighting Man


Situational Irony: Berkeley Protestors Call FOR Marines

Berkeley, California, has once again found itself in the headlines. This time, however, they're calling IN the Marines.

In what can only be seen as an ironic twist of fate, Code Pink, and none other than radical leftist Medea Benjamin, found themselves involved in an incident in which they saw the necessity of calling in the Marines for help.

It started at the usual place with the usual suspects involved. Members of Code Pink were barricading the Armed Forces recruiting center in Berkeley, California (where the city still gives them free parking and a free pass to protest uninhibited by normal legal procedures), when a man in a white volvo drove by and "spat upon Code Pink."

This is where the Marines come into play, in a first-hand, eye-witness account given by Eamon Kelly, a Marine recovering from back surgery, in an email sent to Melanie Morgan of Move America Forward:

Titter Meter: HIGH.

"While we were at the protest in Berkeley from 12 to 4 PM a white volvo drove by and a man spat upon code pink. They chased him down the street and got into a verbal altercation. The police were NO WHERE in sight. That's not the best part, ready for this? Medea Benjamin yelled and I quote "Marines!" she actually yelled for our help because this man had stepped out of his car. Lol. I even asked her if she was yelling Police and she told me "I said Marines" then put her arm around my friend Allen (the Marine vet) Ironic? Ok back to the emails!! "

Speaking of e-mails, Eamon has recieved hundreds and hundreds of letters of support from Americans all across the country after he was featured in my a couple of weeks ago, and the blogging from so many people, including Michelle Malkin, Pat Dollard, Spree at WakeUpAmerica, EaglesUp, Gathering of Eagles, Canada Free Press and dozens more.

Interesting how when the going gets tough, even leftist extemists know who they can count on to bail them out.

More interesting are the ties and connections that surround Medea Benjamin. According to FrontPage Magazine, some of these ties may very well involve financial contributions to terrorist networks in the Middle East:

Waxman has signed a letter allowing radical leftist Medea Benjamin and a dozen of her cohorts – some of whom had lost relatives in the Iraq War – to slip the $600,000 of cash and supplies into camps housing refugees from Fallujah, with less outside scrutiny of its contents. The letter was given to Fernando Suarez del Solar, an amnestied illegal immigrant from Mexico and antiwar speaker for the leftist organization Global Exchange, who lost his son Jesus Suarez in Iraq. Fernando Suarez lives near Waxman’s congressional district. Fernando Suarez distinguished himself as an emotional antiwar protestor. His son, Jesus Suarez (a.k.a. Victor Gonzalez), reportedly died after stepping on an American cluster bomb. Jesus Suarez, who also entered this country illegally, had been offered posthumous citizenship for his service in the military, but his father turned it down. (His wife reportedly accepted the offer in order to safeguard the legal status of their child.) At his son’s funeral, Fernando recalled that Jesus had always wanted to become a Marine and be remembered as a modern day Aztec warrior. However, Fernando soon began shilling for Medea Benjamin and protesting against his son’s lifelong wish.

More troubling than the fact that Waxman’s letter probably sped those supplies through military security is the remaining question: Who was the intended recipient of this collection of left-wingers’ philanthropy?

It says a lot, in my opinion, that Benjamin called upon the Marines for help when there was no available law enforcement. It says a lot about the reputation of the Marines in regards to character, honor, and valor. What speaks volumes more, to me, is that the Marines on sight at the protest did what Marines do best and like no others; they responded to the call of duty.

I don't know if this will make any sort of impact on the Code Pink crowd that was involved in the protest. I don't know that some spark of reason may be triggered in the backs of any of their minds that will give them pause to stop for a moment and think, "These Marines are willing to put themselves in harms way for me, what am I doing?" Perhaps not, but the possibility of it exists.

As for Medea Benjamin? It takes a lot of gall, a lot of unmitigated gall, in my mind, to call upon those whom you're protesting and working against and to undermine and ask them for their help.

God Bless the Marine Corps (and yes, I'm putting aside my service branch bias as an Army veteran to say that).

Once and Always, an American Fighting Man


Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Are these the qualities of a Commander in Chief?

The President of the United States serves as the Commander in Chief of the United States Armed Forces. Army, Air Force, Coast Guard, Navy, and last but certainly not least, the Marine Corps are all under the united command of the individual who occupies the Oval Office. It has been said, for many years and I don't know who originated it, that no one wants peace more than the warriors.

That being said.

Warriors know this one simple little concept summed up nicely in a Latin phrase; sic vis pacem parabellem. It translates into English, "If you want peace, prepare for war."

Certainly there is much to be said for a CIC who desires to achieve peace for our nation, and indeed for the nations of the world. But the concept of peace by laying down your arms and leaving yourself vulnerable to attack is not the way, in my mind, to achieve peace.

What does Senator Barack Obama have to say about how he would go about working for peace? Let's take a look at his own words on it, with a hat tip to Jay at Stop the ACLU:

A far cry from Ronald Reagan's "peace through strength," and "trust, but verify."

Also check out Ace's thoughts on the matter here.

Just the thoughts of someone who is...

Once and Always, an American Fighting Man


Sunday, February 24, 2008

And Who's Looking at YOUR Private Information?

At what point does Freedom of Information become too much availability of information? Where is the line drawn that prevents your personal information from falling into the hands of someone you might not want to have it? And how much responsibility does an entity, be it private or public, bear when your information is mishandled by those who have access to it because of their positions?

These questions are being faced by Milwaukee-based WE Energies after the Associated Press obtained documents from them in an employment case, and show a disturbing trend in the practice of "lifting" information from utility, telecommunications, and accounting industries by employees of their clients.

In one case, a landlord was able to access financial information of his tenants, in another, a woman accessed her ex-boyfriends financial accounts repeatedly after they had broken up. Other cases have allowed for individuals to be stalked or suffer from identity theft. And there is little that is done to stop it, privacy experts say.

Vast computer databases give curious employees the ability to look up sensitive information on people with the click of a mouse. The WE Energies database includes credit and banking information, payment histories, Social Security numbers, addresses, phone numbers, and energy usage. In some cases, it even includes income and medical information.

Experts say some companies do little to stop such abuses even though they could lead to identity theft, stalking and other privacy invasions. And companies that uncover violations can keep them quiet because in many cases it is not illegal to snoop, only to use the data for crimes.

"The vast majority of companies are doing very little to stop this widespread practice of snooping," said Larry Ponemon, a privacy expert who founded The Ponemon Institute, a Traverse City, Mich.-based think tank.

What if the snooping is done with the intention of committing a crime? Isn't it too late, once a crime has been committed, to deal with the situation? Jay Foley, executive director of the Identity Theft Resources Center, agrees, stating, "Something needs to be done at the state level to make sure this is illegal." His solution? Tracking software that can tell which employees have accessed customer accounts, and intervention by state regulators and lawmakers if companies are less than vigilant in safeguarding the private information of their customers.

The problem with this solution, however, is knowing which software to choose, and which software is also available on the market that might be used to counter it.

The issue came to light in 2004 when acting mayor Marvin Pratt lost to his rival, current mayor Tom Barrett, in a heated Milwaukee mayoral election, after an employee helped to leak information to the media regarding Pratt, including that Pratt was often late in paying his utility bills. Pratt is convinced the incident cost him the race and damaged his reputation, and recently has met with top WE executives, who have assured him that the problem has been stopped "as much as possible." He has dropped plans for a possible lawsuit against WE.

The employee who leaked Pratt's information has been terminated, by that hasn't ended the problem. Between 2005 and 2007 at least 17 employees have been terminated or faced disciplinary action for breaking client confidentiality. Another was suspended in 2005 for accessing Pratt's account unrelated to company business, but was allowed to keep her job.

But it doesn't stop with WE. The IRS handled 219 disciplinary actions last year alone, a number double the previous year. Minnesota Department of Public Safety said that two of it's employees had accessed information on 400 residents through it's driver's license database, leading to disciplinary action that was not disclosed because the investigation is ongoing.

Nor is the problem limited to the United States. In a 2006 Australian case, 111 people resigned or were terminated from their positions with Centrelink:

There were 790 security breaches at government agency Centrelink involving 600 staff. Staff were found to have inappropriately accessed databases containing citizens' information. The databases are used to administer social security, pension and unemployment benefits. Prime Minister John Howard is said to be considering a proposal which would use this database for a new national identity card which is under consideration.

In total 19 Centrelink employees have been sacked and 92 others have resigned. Police are conducting investigations into five employees, they said.

According to testimonies and depositions, the employees don't generally see anything wrong with accessing this information, either. Employees see nothing wrong with pulling up information on a customer out of curiosity to see a little bit into their private lives.

Perhaps it is nothing more than a little fascination and idle curiosity in the majority of cases. Humans are curious creatures, and when they have the means to satisfy their certain curiosities, they will apply them. A little snooping can't cause any harm, right? But suppose, just for the sake of argument, that someone was snooping for more than just idle curiosity. What happens in these cases? Is allowing employee snooping of customer information a powder keg that is waiting to explode? Or is it just something that happens, and isn't much to really worry about?

What do YOU think? Do you know who's accessing your personal information and what they're doing with what they find?

Points to definitely ponder.

Once and Always, an American Fighting Man


Five Dead, One Hospitalized, in Apparent Murder-Suicide

According to Sgt. Peter Rodriguez, of the neighboring Brea police department, which is handling the investigation, the call came in to the 911 call center at around 11 p.m. Saturday. The boy has been hospitalized and is in stable condition.

Police found the body of a woman on the doorstep. Inside, they found the bodies of a 5-year-old boy and two girls, ages 8 and 9. Officers also found the body of a man with a shotgun beneath him.

Police did not immediately know the motive for the shootings or the relationship of the victims.

This incident has shocked the community of Yorba Linda, a bedroom community 40 miles south of Los Angeles, which is the home of the Nixon Library. The Library is across the street from the scene of the homicides.

So far police have been unable to determine a motive in the slayings.

Updates as they become available.

Once and Always, an American Fighting Man


Gitmo Propaganda

Mention Guantanamo Bay and two things come to mind: A Few Good Men, starring Jack Nicholson and Tom Cruise and the detention camp for terrorist suspects.

Guantanamo Bay is a little piece of United States owned property on the island of Cuba. In the years following 9/11, it has become the center of controversy and a vast treasure trove of propaganda bits for anti-Bush groups and individuals. Detractors paint a portrait of constant prisoner abuse, beatings, torture, and dehumanizing conditions. Advocates claim that the detention center is nothing more than a modernized high security facility designed to house a specific type of prisoner; radical extremist Islamic terrorists. Administration and security of the facility is handled by Joint Task Force Guantanamo.

What are conditions like at Guantanamo that has so many people in an uproar about how bad that it is there? There have been riots, suicides and suicide attempts, and claims of extreme disrespect of the prisoners rights, to include a retracted article by Newsweek which charged that a copy of the Koran had been flushed down a toilet by a guard.

Critics and human rights advocates demand that the detainees be granted rights according to the tenets of the United States Constitution, a document clearly created as the foundation of law for citizens of the United States. This demand lies in conflict with the Bush administration, and indeed with the legal system itself, as the detainees in Guantanamo are not American citizens. The Bush administration would prefer that they be considered "enemy combatants" rather than "prisoners of war" as defined by the Geneva Conventions under Article 4.

Much of the controversy surrounding Guantanamo stems from a 2004 report by the International Red Cross on the conditions at the facility:

An ICRC inspection team that spent most of June at Guantanamo Bay reported the use of psychological and sometimes physical coercion on the prisoners, the newspaper (the New York Times) said.

It said it had recently obtained a memorandum that quoted the report in detail and listed its major findings.

In Geneva, the ICRC said it would neither confirm nor deny the New York Times report -- in which allegations of treatment tantamount to torture go further than what the neutral intermediary has publicly stated before about inmates held at Guantanamo.

But, in a statement, the Geneva-based ICRC said it remained concerned that "significant problems regarding conditions and treatment at Guantanamo Bay have not yet been adequately addressed," and it was pursuing talks with U.S. authorities.

Reactions from critics of the Bush administration, both at home and abroad, were immediate, calling for both the closure of Guantanamo and the impeachment of President Bush and Vice-President Dick Cheney.

But there are other reports that come out of Guantanamo, as well, that tell a different side of life in the facility; detainees forming teams and playing baseball, prayer rugs distributed to each detainee, regular prayer times being observed, and even a high demand for the Harry Potter books from the facility library:

The Harry Potter craze has reached the cells of Camp Delta at Guantanamo Bay. The ripping tales of the boy wizard are said to be top of the request list for the prison's 520 al-Qaeda and Taliban suspects.

Lori, a contractor who runs the prison library, said the J K Rowling stories had beaten Agatha Christie into second place.

"We've got a few who are kind of hooked on it," she told the Washington Times. "A couple have asked if they can see the movie."

Still, life in the Guantanamo facility is far different than in other prisons. Toilet paper is rationed, bed sheets are issued nightly for sleep and collected the next morning in order to cut down on the number of suicide attempts by detainees, and their eating utensils are accounted for after every meal to ensure that none are turned into makeshift weapons. Television is available for detainees to watch preapproved programs, now, where they had once been allowed television only as a privilege for cooperating during interrogations. And some prisoners have been reported as gaining weight, with one detainee having doubled his weight from 215 lbs. at his arrival to 410 lbs. today. This stems from efforts by the Bush administration to improve the conditions of life at Guantanamo for the detainees:

There are certainly benefits to giving them outlets other than sitting in their cell or sitting in their recreation cell for hours at a time with nothing else to exercise their mind or think about other than their situation," Buzby said.

The easing of conditions marks a new course on discipline at Guantanamo, where the U.S. holds about 375 men on suspicion of terrorism or links to al-Qaeda or the Taliban.

One thing is certain, no matter how much things are improved at Guantanamo, there will be controversy surrounding the facility. Some of the controversy, notably, is justifiable. The transformation and conversion of a facility built to handle Haitian refugees into a military prison in a short period of time was bound to be a situation that would be bereft with problems. Factor in the willingness of those who wish to blame George Bush for everything that goes wrong in the world (the infamous Bush Derangement Syndrome), the willingness of our enemies in this most recent war to engage in "lawfare" in our court systems, and the very literal conflict of cultures of East meets West, combine them into a detention facility called Gitmo, and thus is born a breeding ground for politics and propaganda wrangling.

Are there problems at Gitmo? Of course there are. There are problems with any maximum security prison anywhere in the world. The difference with Gitmo is that it was opened to house a group of individuals suspected of committing acts of terrorism. This is a different type of criminal than is found in other maximum security facilities, and there are nearly four hundred of them at Gitmo. Have there been violations of prisoners rights? More than likely. Again, that comes with the running of a prison. It should be noted, however, that in the entire time since detainees first arrived at the facility in 2004, no prisoner at Gitmo has been filmed being beheaded by their sword-wielding captors.

That in and of itself sets it apart from the treatment that the detainees at Gitmo have been receiving as compared to what westerners experience at the hands of capturing al-Qaeda and Taliban groups.

That, and one 410 lb detainee at Gitmo...

Once and Always, an American Fighting Man


Saturday, February 23, 2008

America is not at war. The U.S. Military is at war. America is at the Mall.

This story was sent to me in my email. After reading it, I thought it was definitely worth passing along.

Enjoy :)

As I came out of the supermarket that sunny day, pushing my cart of groceries towards my car, I saw an old man with the hood of his car up and a lady sitting inside the car, with the door open. The old man was looking at the engine. I put my groceries away in my car and continued to watch the old gentleman from about twenty-five feet away. I saw a young man in his early twenties with a grocery bag in his arm, walking towards the old man. The old gentleman saw him coming too and took a few steps towards him. I saw the old gentleman point to his open hood and say something. The young man put his grocery bag into what looked like a brand new Cadillac Escalade and then turn back to the old man and I heard him yell at the old gentleman saying, "You shouldn't even be allowed to drive a car at your age." And then with a wave of his hand, he got in his car and peeled rubber out of the parking lot.

I saw the old gentleman pull out his handkerchief and mop his brow as he went back to his car and again looked at the engine. He then went to his wife and spoke with her and appeared to tell her it would be okay. I had seen enough and I approached the old man. He saw me coming and stood straight and as I got near him I said, "Looks like you're having a problem." He smiled sheepishly and quietly nodded his head. I looked under the hood myself and knew that whatever the problem was, it was beyond me. Looking around I saw a gas station up the road and told the old gentleman that I would be right back. I drove to the station and went inside and saw three attendants working on cars. I approached one of them and related the problem the old man had with his car and offered to pay them if they could follow me back down and help him. The old man had pushed the heavy car under the shade of a tree and appeared to be comforting his wife. When he saw us he straightened up and thanked me for my help. As the mechanics diagnosed the problem (overheated engine) I spoke with the old gentleman. When I shook hands with him earlier he had noticed my Marine Corps ring and had commented about it, telling me that he had been a Marine too. I nodded and asked the usual question, "What outfit did you serve with?" He had mentioned that he served with the first Marine Division at Tarawa, Saipan, Iwo Jima and Guadalcanal .

He had hit all the big ones and retired from the Corps after the war was over.

As we talked we heard the car engine come on and saw the mechanics lower the hood. They came over to us as the old man reached for his wallet, but was stopped by me and I told him I would just put the bill on my AAA card. He still reached for the wallet and handed me a card that I assumed had his name and address on it and I stuck it in my pocket. We all shook hands all around again and I said my goodbye's to his wife. I then told the two mechanics that I would follow them back up to the station. Once at the station I told them that they had interrupted their own jobs to come along with me and help the old man. I said I wanted to pay for the help, but they refused to charge me. One of them pulled out a card from his pocket looking exactly like the card the old man had given to me. Both of the men told me then, that they were Marine Corps Reserves. Once again we shook hands all around and as I was leaving, one of them told me I should look at the card the old man had given to me and I said I would and drove off. For some reason I had gone about two blocks when I pulled over and took the card out of my pocket and looked at it for a long, long, time. The name of the old gentleman was on the card in golden leaf and under his name......... "Congressional Medal of Honor Society."

I sat there motionless looking at the card and reading it over and over.

I looked up from the card and smiled to no one but myself and marveled that on this day, four Marines had all come together, because one of us needed help. He was an old man alright, but it felt good to have stood next to greatness and courage and an honor to have been in his presence.

America is not at war. The U.S. Military is at war. America is at the Mall.

Once and Always, an American Fighting Man


Thursday, February 21, 2008

Is John McCain Still "Viable?"

You can always tell when it's political season. The sex scandals come out like sunglasses on a nude beach. Republican Presidential candidate Senator John McCain is now the subject of a "rumored" affair with a lobbyist, according to the New York Times.

A female lobbyist had been turning up with him at fund-raisers, visiting his offices and accompanying him on a client’s corporate jet. Convinced the relationship had become romantic, some of his top advisers intervened to protect the candidate from himself — instructing staff members to block the woman’s access, privately warning her away and repeatedly confronting him, several people involved in the campaign said on the condition of anonymity.

The Times, you will recall, endorsed John McCain by saying he was more likable than any of the other candidates that were then running.

Can you feel the glowing love?

In a four page (online) article that spends five paragraphs spinning the rumor based speculation and then goes into two pages of giving a mini-bio of McCain before coming back to the allegations for another page and nearly a half, the Times refers only to sources who commented on conditions of anonymity.

One wonders if one of those sources might have been Captain Jamil Hussein.

Politico reports that McCain has vowed to "fight back" against the Times. With his wife, Cindy, at his side this morning, McCain firmly denied the allegations and any wrong doing, after which Cindy McCain took the microphone herself to express her "disappointment" with the Times. According to the McCain camp, there is a possibility that The New Republic pressured the Times into running the story.

The story, word of which first leaked to the Drudge Report in December, relies on anonymous sources tied to McCain who said the lobbyist was warned to keep her distance to the senator in the run-up to his first presidential bid.

In the piece, McCain is quoted as telling Times Editor Bill Keller that he never did anything unethical. Top McCain advisers, including his former Senate Chief of Staff Mark Salter, also say on the record that there was nothing inappropriate done legislatively.

McCain senior aid Mark Salter also denied any inappropriate behavior on the senator's part, stating that the Times standards more closely related "the standards of the National Enquirer."

He's not alone. Others are coming out to stand up for McCain, calling him a man of integrity and honor. The allegations and speculation center around McCain's involvement with telecom lobbyist Vicki Iseman, who also denies the rumored affair, in her accompanying McCain to a fund raiser, with other clients, in Miami, and traveling with him on a corporate jet back to Washington afterward, along with a campaign aide, in 1999. McCain is also reported to have interceded on behalf of her client in the case of the issuing of an FCC license, an issuance that McCain staffers report had been held up for twice as long as the normal time for the issuance of such a license.

Let's see, a lobbyist is seen with the Senator at public events, with others in attendance, a corporate flight in which a campaign aide was present, writing a letter on behalf of a lobbyist's client, a client who had contributed thousands of dollars to McCain's campaign funds. Yup, that sounds like a sex scandal.

What is interesting is that this comes out as a public scandal in the Times when more seriously damning allegations against Democratic candidate Senator Barack Obama are being ignored by the main stream media. It does not go without note, however, that in light of the Times article, Republicans are rallying around McCain. Rudy Giuliani and opponent Mike Huckabee have both spoken out in disfavor of the Times article.

Perhaps this is a lesson in the law of unintended consequences.

And, perhaps we can look at Cindy McCain and her ever present hint of a smile, and see that perhaps, indeed, John McCain is still "viable." It may very well be that he is a man who understands women (yes, this is me contributing to rumors and speculations. Bob Dole did, after all, become a spokesman for Viagra...).

Once and Always, An American Fighting Man (with tongue firmly planted in cheek)

[UPDATE] Talk radio hosts Rush Limbaugh and Laura Ingraham have also come to the "rally" in support of McCain in light of the Times accusations of his "affair."

Limbaugh and other conservative commentators rushed to defend McCain on Thursday against a potentially damaging article in The New York Times, embracing a maverick they have often attacked.

"You're surprised that Page Six-type gossip is on the front page of The New York Times? Limbaugh asked as he began his radio show. "Where have you been? How in the world can anybody be surprised?"

Limbaugh said earlier in an e-mail to Politico that the Times article about McCain’s relationship with a female lobbyist was a clear case of "the drive-by media ... trying to take him out."

Laura Ingraham, another influential conservative radio host, asserted that the Times waited until McCain was on the brink of the Republican presidential nomination and now is seeking to "contaminate" him with an article that she calls "absurd" and "ridiculous."

Isn't it funny how a little thing like a sex scandal can bring all the family home to the dinner table?

GOD I love keeping up with politics!



Three US Senators in Emergency Hellicopter Landing in Afghanistan

Three United States Senators touring Afghanistan were forced to make an emergency landing today and had to be taken out by land convoy.

Sens. John Kerry, Joseph Biden and Chuck Hagel were aboard the aircraft. No one was injured, according a statement from Kerry's office. The senators and their delegation returned to Bagram Air Base in a motor convoy, and have left for Turkey.

The senators were in the Afganistan leg of a trip that included other stops in India, Turkey, and Pakistan, where they have been observing elections.

There were no reported injuries, and several hours after the emergency landing, they were escorted safely by overland convoy to Bagram Air Base, from which they departed to continue on to Ankara, Turkey. Senator Kerry thanked the U.S. troops, "who were terrific as always and who continue to do an incredible job in Afghanistan.

Just a thought here, but I wonder how "uneducated" he thought those troops where when they were escorting his butt back to the air base?

Once and Always, an (educated) American Fighting Man


Wednesday, February 20, 2008


Hat tip to Michelle Malkin for this call to action. The communist/jihadist embracing leftinistra's have called out for help and they're getting it. Code Pink has been joined by World Can't Wait in Berzerkely, and as MM shows on her site, they're being joined by other groups as well across the country.

Code Pink's announcement:

Join us for Counter-Recruitment this Friday, February 22nd at our new location at the U.S. Navy Recruitment Center!

Join CODEPINK outside of the Navy Recruitment Center in Santa Monica! Wear your pink for peace as we gather to spread the anti-war message and to educate the public about the risks associated with military recruitment and why it’s smart to OPT OUT. To attend, meet us outside our new location at the U.S. Navy Recruitment Center located at 2708 Wilshire Blvd. in Santa Monica (90403) at 12 noon this Friday the 22nd. Let’s show our support for Berkeley and let everyone know that Santa Monica is still in the running with Counter-Recruitment!

Let us know you’re coming by contacting Sarah at 310.827.4320 or

An announcement that is obviously calling themselves "Funk the War:"

After many previous protests had found the 14th st recruiter “closed” at 5PM, Funk the War found them open, and the door unlocked at nearer to 6Pm and promptly exploited the situation by demonstrating to them first hand how an occupying force behaves.

After a loud commotion inside while outnumbered cops watched, recruiters finally managed to get protesters to leave-but not before literature and full-body length cardboard displays in the street window area were destroyed. In addition, hundreds more “Funk the War” stickers were plastered all over just about everything that would take them. By the time everyone was out it looked like a tornado had swept through the lobby.

One recruiter tried to grab an activist but found himself overpowered by SDS’s superior strength and numbers and had no choice but to give up!

This came on the heels of the whole group marching in K st and Connecticut Ave at the height of rush hour, closing War Profiteer’s Row to cars fro quite a while. The group closed out by going after DC GOP headquarters, but that door was locked and there were too many cops around to break it down.

Pass the word along, contact people you know who live in these areas and let's put patriotic American men and women out there in numbers to counter these people and send them home. If you live in other areas where you see this sort of thing happening, LET US KNOW and we'll make sure the word gets out.


Once and Always, an American Fighting Man


Monday, February 18, 2008


Hillary Clinton's team has accused Democrat opponent Barack Obama of plagiarism, referring to his speeches in which he has said: "Don’t tell me words don’t matter. ‘I have a dream’ — just words? ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal’ — just words? ‘We have nothing to fear but fear itself’ — just words? Just speeches?” The source of the original statements, they claim, belong to Gov. Deval Patrick of Massachusetts, from his 2006 campaign.

Senator Barack Obama adapted one of his signature arguments — that his oratory amounts to more than inspiring words — from speeches given by Gov. Deval Patrick of Massachusetts during his 2006 campaign.

At a Democratic Party dinner Saturday in Wisconsin, Mr. Obama, of Illinois, responded to Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York, who has criticized him for delivering smooth speeches but says they do not amount to solutions to the nation’s problems, by ticking through a string of historic references.

I'm actually not sure, personally, if Obama DID lift the key elements of Patrick's 2006 speech. Personally, it all sounds like the same old rhetoric of the left to me at this point. I've heard Hillary Clinton make speeches that, to me, sounded like the same things I've heard other Democrats make in the past as well, including things that I'm certain her husband said during his bid for and time as President.

What I DO know, however, is that there IS evidence that Obama takes things from other places, ideas from other people, and incorporates them into his own rhetoric in his bid for the White House, as is evidenced here:

Such are the curiosities of life during the campaign season...

Once and Always, an American Fighting Man


Sunday, February 17, 2008

Obama the Builder

The media loves Barack Obama. There's no denying it, he's good on the camera, he speaks well, he carries himself well, and, despite Bill Clinton's claims for the title, if he wins, he truly will be the first black President of the United States.

What does he stand for? What, really, are his driving motivations and philosophies? How much attention has been paid to his record during his bid for the White House? And how does a children's cartoon series play into Presidential politics?

Some pundits have already labeled Obama a "cult personality." With his "Yes we can" speech and his calls for change, Obama has mounted a powerful surge against the tide of Clinton support within the Democratic Party. Even the Kennedy clan is split in their support for Presidential candidates. But is it any more than the normal smoke and mirrors of Washington politics?

Obama, a first-term Illinois senator who would be America's first black president, is threatening to swamp Clinton, the New York senator with the political pedigree who had long been the front-runner for the Democratic nomination.

Popular Hollywood actors and musicians have made a Web video glorifying his stump speech, singing "Yes We Can" as he delivers his lines. Liberals and moderates are gushing over him.

Democratic strategist Liz Chadderdon said Obama is sweeping Americans off their feet.

How is he doing it? Perhaps by giving such moving speeches as this one:

No wonder he's been compared to Elvis and JFK. And it may be that, in some weird Freudian way, we've seen a glimpse into the inner workings of Obama's mind, as he has chosen as his campaign catch phrase a slogan that children across the country can relate back to if you ask them about Bob the Builder.

"Can we build it? YES WE CAN!"

Perhaps we can expect to see some Tonka toys in the Oval Office if Obama is elected President, just slightly out of sight of the camera's when he gives us his fireside chats. Don't be surprised if there isn't a hard hat lying around somewhere as well.

Maybe just a little bit more thought should have been put into selecting a campaign slogan...

Once and Always, an American Fighting Man


Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Legislative Progress in Iraq

Critics have been crying out for the Iraqi legislature to accomplish something. Our own Congress has criticized the Iraqi body for not "getting anything done." They're a fine group to accuse anyone of any such sort. The critics can sit down now, unless they now want to complain about what has been done. The Iraqi legislature has passed three important pieces of legislation today that have required a lot of hard work and compromise on the road to making history.

Good for them!

Using old-fashioned behind-the-scenes politicking, Iraq’s Parliamentary leaders pushed through three divisive laws that had been delayed for months by bitter maneuvering between factions and, recently, threats to dissolve the legislative body.

More than any legislation approved so far, the three measures have the potential to spur reconciliation between Sunnis and Shiites and set the country on the road to a more representative government.

The three measures are very important legislatively for Iraq. They cover the Iraqi budget, provisional powers with the country, and amnesty for thousands of detainees held in Iraqi custody under suspicion of belonging to al-Qaeda. The release is crucial to Sunnis, as a majority of the detainees are of that sect. The provisional powers section is important to defining Iraq's status as a federal state. The budget section covers issues important to the Kurds, which ensures their region 17 percent of the nations revenues, minus the cost of providing for the operations of national ministries within the region.

The combining of the three pieces of legislation into one enabled the government to establish a quorum necessary for the passage of any one of the three items. This ended a deadlock that had been ongoing for days, with nothing being accomplished. By combining the three pieces, each faction could come to session and walk away claiming that they had won on their issue.

The one issue of contention that remained was the selection of a date for national elections. Both Sunni and Shiite factions stand to lose seats in the legislature, something both parties have been seeking to avoid (wouldn't the Democrats and Republicans in this country do the same, if in the same circumstance?), but the issue was forced and a date set for the 1st of October.

Critics and naysayers often complain that it is taking "too long" for the Iraqi's to begin the establishment of their own government independently of the involvement of the United States. It is easy to sit back and demand and insist, from the armchair politician standpoint, or even from the opposing party standpoint within our own government, that they move along more quickly.

Our own system of government, as we know it today, took years in the undertaking to come into being. Our first system of national government, the Articles of Confederation, were abolished ten years after their inception in favor of our current Constitutional, representative republic form of government. Great minds of law, philosophy, and political thought came together to discuss and formulate our government. Iraq doesn't have the benefit of that sort of talent. The brightest and the best political thinkers in Iraq were either executed by the Hussein regime or members of it.

It is going to take time.

But this, today, is progress in the right direction.

Once and Always, an American Fighting Man


Monday, February 11, 2008

Berkeley shows it's collective ass to Move America Forward

[Update- Live updates and photos from the showdown in Berkeley, all day updating, February 12, 2008]

[Foreword: I'm not mincing words with this one, I'm not going to be polite. I'm not going to be nice. If this bothers you, don't read any further. But if you love your country, you love the men and women who stand ready to defend your rights and freedoms, if you love liberty, then read on.]

If you haven't been hiding under a rock for the past few weeks, or if you've been getting your news from somewhere other than the dinosaur media, then you're well aware of the situation going on in Berkeley, CA. We've covered it here, on this site, more than adequately.

Move America Forward has a rally scheduled for tomorrow to protest the city's treatment and stand against the United States Marine Corps. Berkeley has shown it's true color to MAF, and that color is pink. As in Code Pink, the left wing nut job organization that started all of this business in Berkeley.

Now, to be honest, Berkeley takes offense and deference at being labeled as unpatriotic, un-American, traitors, seditious, and any number of such names and labels that have been hurled at them for their anti-military stance. I don't know WHY they take such offense at being correctly labeled, but they do. If they can't handle the heat...

Move America Forward has followed all the legal processes for obtaining permission for their event in Berkeley tomorrow, and here, in an email sent to WUA by Melanie Morgan, are the conditions that the city of Berkeley has put upon MAF:

Catherine Moy, our Executive Director for Move America Forward, met with Berkeley City officials today, including representatives of the police department about our rally and protest of Berkeley's outrageous resolution condemning our Marines at the Recruiting Center as 'unwanted and uninvited intruders.'

Um, it did not go so well.

Oddly, some were outwardly HOSTILE towards our patriots.

Cat Moy suggested that the city of Berkeley just start waterboarding us right now.

The police liason was NOT amused.

Among the demands from the bureaucrats is that we provide:

-sign language intrepreters for hearing impaired (how Berzekeley.)

-porta-potties for the disabled.

-shut down our sound system at 5:00 when our rally is scheduled to begin!

-and many other ridiculous permit rules.

CodePink has preferred parking, free sound permits, and two City Council Members plotting over the weekend to deny us our right to speak at the Council meeting at 7:00 tomorrow night. Oops, did I say 7:00? Now it appears the Council is meeting secretly at 5:00 in the afternoon.

Fascism by Regulation.

It's what Berkeley does best.

May I remind our not-so-esteemed members of the Berkely City Council what our Marines, Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guardsmen do for us without thought about any political affiliation?

1. Toys for Tots program

2. Kartina and other domestic hurricane relief

3. Tsunami relief

4. Disaster relief efforts globally without restrictions as to nationality, religious affiliation, governments or political reference.

5. Drug Interdiction along the US borders

6. Safety and security of our Embassies.

I will be there, and I hope you will join me as we stand strong and proud with our military men and women, and especially the USMC.


Melanie Morgan

I'm sure they WANTED to bring out the water hose and a pine plank, but that would be too much like what they have a fit about, wouldn't it?

Seems like a rather hypocritical set of demands from a city counsel trying to show it's best face to Washington in order to ease the threats of a removal of federal funding for the city. Code Pink gets pretty much free reign of the city, but MAF is supposed to have their sound systems off at the time the rally is supposed to start?


What else can you expect from them when the mayor is wearing what appears to be a pink beret in support of code pink?'

What follows are target specific to the groups that will be involved in tomorrows events; a message from me, personally, to these groups and individuals. Put it in your "for what it's worth" category.

First of all to Code Pink. Congratulations. I've encountered a number of bullies in my time, but you all take the cake. You know that no man of honor who still adheres to the old codes of Chivalry (and there are those of us who are out there, a lot of them wearing uniforms) would in good conscious fight a group of women. You use sex as a weapon in your propagation of propaganda that is aimed at taking the courage and conviction of young men would might be willing to enlist in the armed forces of our nation, in this case specifically the Marine Corps, and do your dead level best to effectively neuter, no, castrate them with your sense of false honor, false virtue, and false morality. The very actions that you undertake are divisive and seditious, amoral, and would have men sit at home to do nothing, putting our nation at risk. You deserve no respect, you deserve nothing but contempt for your outrageous behaviors.

To the Mayor of Berkeley and the Berkeley City Counsel: you are guilty of willful misconduct and violations of your oaths to the Constitution of the United States, if indeed you took such oaths of office. Nonetheless, you, as a body, have promoted acts of sedition and treason during a time of war. Rightfully, you should be considered a city in rebellion against your nation, and treated thusly. I see no reason that any of you should be allowed to remain in office other than the lack of will of the American people at large to prosecute you for these acts against your nation. I personally have advocated your secession from the union, and would urge you to begin consideration of such at this time if you have not already begun to do so. Many of us would like nothing more than to see you withdrawn from our nation for making your stand; indeed it is public knowledge that you are already beginning to see the loss of revenue from businesses that will have nothing further to do with your city.

And yes, to that one former member of the Marine Corps, you are indeed, sir, an EX-Marine. The Corps has a saying, "once a Marine, always a Marine." This does not apply to you, by your own declaration you ARE an Ex-Marine. A friend of mine at work said to me once recently that there is only one ex-Marine, and that is Lee Harvey Oswald. You are in good company, sir, in taking the stance of being an ex-Marine.

Bravo, Mr. Mayor and Berkeley City Counsel. You have made your position clear. We are more than willing to accommodate you and let you go on your own.

To the citizens of Berkeley: there is no middle ground for you in this. You are either citizens of the United States of America or you are rebels. Each and every legal citizen of you has enjoyed the benefits of freedom assured you by the blood of patriots through the various and sundry engagements and wars that our armed services have participated in through the 200 plus years of our nations existence. You stand at a crossroads, and have a choice; remove from office those treasonous and seditious members of your city counsel. Make a stand, one way or the other. There are no gray areas in this one. Sitting on the sidelines will not get you recognition as a patriotic American citizen.

Choose. America is watching.

Melanie Morgan and Move America Forward: I wish that circumstances would allow this army veteran to stand with you tomorrow, but I will be with you in spirit, as will countless other veterans across our nation. We are proud of you for taking a stand for our younger brothers and sisters on active duty in the Marines, but this goes beyond just the Corps. It affects the rest of us from other branches, as well, and we realize this. There is a long standing rivalry between the services, by tradition, but it's a friendly rivalry, and if you pick a fight with one branch, you've picked a fight with all branches. I know that I speak for other veterans and current members of the Army, Navy, Air Force and Coast Guard when I say WHOOWAAH! Give'em HELL in Berkeley!

Finally, to my brothers and sisters in and out of uniform, those of you who have given of yourselves to ensure that we, as a people, continue on this earth. If you are in range, if there is any way you can make it to Berkeley tomorrow, GO. This should be a full frontal assault upon those who would undermine our ability to defend our nation from its enemies. You will be confronting, head on, "enemies domestic." Stand proud, stand fast, and remember the love of our nation that prompted you, as soldiers, as sailors, as Marines, to put on the uniform and offer yourself to be put in harms way that your families, your loved ones, might live free against tyranny and oppression.

To the rest of the nation, take this to heart, and hear my words well. We, the silent majority, are no longer remaining silent. Your Code Pinks, your Cindy Sheehans, your MoveOn.orgs are hereby on notice. Patriotic men and women are arising and will not let you turn our nation to socialism, to communism, unchecked. We are a nation of laws, tradition, and integrity. We will not allow you to run rough-shod over us, to dictate to us from your position as the vocal minority, to ram your anti-American rhetoric down our throats.

We will no longer let anyone make apologies for being Americans. We will accept nothing short of loyalty to our nation. This isn't a call for a fascist regime to be established, this is a call for Americans to live freely without the burden of overbearing government that panders to groups who do not have our best interests as citizens, but their own self interests as organizations and groups, to demand that the laws of our land be followed and enforced.

If not, then we need not make any pretense of continuing as a nation of laws.

Once and Always, an American Fighting Man

Postscript: Jamie Colby of FOXNews has an article addressing tomorrow's scheduled day of events in Berkeley by MAF. Feel free to drop by there and leave a comment of your own there, as well as leaving your comments here at WUA. I have already left my thoughts there, as well.

Spree's comments:

Comment by SD
February 11th, 2008 at 5:00 pm


Your actions are reprehensible and trying to claim that you meant no offense to our troops, our Marines themselves, is belied by the your actions and the wording of the resolution itself.

We have been constantly keeping updates and publishing stories on this and we will continue to do so.

Being that you have shown that you stand with the Anti-American, Military bashing Code Pink, you should step down because you are an embarrassment and continue to embarrass the whole town of Berkeley by pretending to represent them.

As long as you are their public face, the whole town will be painted with the Anti-Military brush that you represent.

Those Marines, in fact any military member, from the day they sign up are saying “I will die for you” and your pathetic response to them is to insult them, show them disrespect and join with a group that harasses them daily as you allow them to do.

You do not deserve ANY federal funding and I will continue to call my representatives and tell them to join Senator DeMint to strip you of all earmarks and federal funds.

Sir, YOU are a disgrace.

My comments:

Comment by MT
February 11th, 2008 at 10:48 pm

There are no words to express my outrage at this situation that you and your bully friends at Code Pink have thrust upon this nation. You and your entire city counsel are, in my mind, guilty of sedition and treason.

If you hate our nation so much, press for secession. Begin the process of removing yourselves from the Union. I know that I’ll be pushing for it to be allowed. If you don’t want to be a part of us, we certainly don’t want to stop you from not BEING a part of us. I personally am more than willing to accommodate you in any way, shape, manner, form, or fashion in which I can gladly and willingly help the people of Berkeley take their town and make it a nation in and of itself, with all that comes with it.

You disgust me to no end.


Sunday, February 10, 2008

Obama Takes Maine

Once again, we see how the inevitability of Hillary Clinton isn't so much the case. Despite the below freezing temperatures and up to eight inches of snow, Maine voters turned out to put Obama as their choice over Clinton in today's caucuses.

AUGUSTA, Maine - Barack Obama defeated Hillary Rodham Clinton in the Democratic Party's Maine caucuses on Sunday, grabbing a majority of delegates as the state's Democrats overlooked the snowy weather and turned out in heavy numbers for municipal gatherings.

With 70 percent of the participating precincts reporting, Obama had 57 percent of the vote, while Clinton had 42 percent.

Democrats in 420 Maine towns and cities decided how the state’s 24 delegates would be allotted at the party’s national presidential convention in August. Despite the weather, turnout was “incredible,” party executive director Arden Manning said.

In other breaking news from Team Clinton, her campaign manager has resigned today, as well:

Patti Solis Doyle announced that she is stepping down as the campaign manager for the presidential campaign of Sen. Hilary Clinton, D-N.Y., ABC News has learned that this afternoon.

In a note she sent to her staff, Solis Doyle announced that this week Maggie Williams, Clinton's chief of staff when she was first lady, "will begin to assume the duties of campaign manager." Solis Doyle, 42, said she would remain as a senior adviser to the campaign.

Senior advisor. So she's not going to be in CHARGE any more, but she'll be there in an ADVISORY role.

Curious how the Clintons shuffle the deck. I'm not sure I'd personally do business that way. OH WAIT, this isn't business, it's politics...

Just a couple of observations from

Once and Always, an American Fighting Man


Friday, February 8, 2008

[UPDATED AND BUMPED] The British are Caving! The British are Caving!

Updates Below

There once was a time when it was said "The sun does not set on the British flag." At the height of the British Empire, the rule of the throne was felt, literally, around the world. The British Empire has gone into decline within our lifetime; what remains is now the British Commonwealth.

In his day, Alexander conquered the known world and had plans for extending his empire beyond the known reaches of the mapped world. His rule extended across Europe and into Asia and Africa. Still today there are cities to be found in several nations which bear the name Alexandria.

It has also been said that "All roads lead to Rome." Before Rome there were (in no particular order) Greece, Egypt, Persia, Babylon, and after the Byzantine and Holy Roman Empires. Those are just the empires that come to mind off the top of my head.

Let us not forget Hitler's dreams of a 1,000 year German empire he called the Third Reich.

There are a great many who think, and believe, that we are witnessing an attempt at a global Islamic empire. Last year's rally in Indonesia by a group of hard line Muslims called for a global caliphate.

More than 70,000 members of a hardline Muslim group held a rally in Indonesia that heard calls for a caliphate -- or Islamic rule -- to govern the world.

The supporters of the Hizbut Tahrir group filled up most of an 80,000-seat sports stadium in the capital Jakarta, waving flags as they heard fiery speeches saying it was "time for the caliphate to reign."

The meeting was held as part of "civic education" for Indonesian Muslims, said Muhammad Ismail Yusanto, a spokesman for Hizbut Tahrir.

The organisation advocates Islamic rule and is banned in several Middle Eastern countries.

And yet there are those who would say that those who think that there are Muslim extremist groups who are intent upon world domination are paranoid and don't know what they are talking about. One needs but to look across Europe to see the influx of Muslim immigrants into their countries and see the conflict of cultures that is already beginning to start. One can also look here at home in the U.S. and see that there are situations arising where one student was even suspended for the horrible offense of leaving his bagged lunch, a ham steak, on a table where a group of Muslim students were seated.

I'm sure those students were critically injured by the offending ham steak.

And now we have the Archbishop of Canterbury stating that the infusion of Sharia Law into the British legal system is "unavoidable."

Dr Rowan Williams told Radio 4's World at One that the UK has to "face up to the fact" that some of its citizens do not relate to the British legal system.

Dr Williams argues that adopting parts of Islamic Sharia law would help maintain social cohesion.

For example, Muslims could choose to have marital disputes or financial matters dealt with in a Sharia court.

He says Muslims should not have to choose between "the stark alternatives of cultural loyalty or state loyalty".

In other words, the rule of law in Great Britain is going to have to change to include Sharia law.

Does this mean that British legal officials will not charge fathers who kill their wives and daughters for not wearing traditional Muslim attire with murder? Will stoning become a common place event in the streets of London when people are caught in the act of adultery? Will Scotland Yard have a chopping block for the removal of limbs of those convicted of theft?

Will we see the Queen stepping down from the throne and donning a burkah?

I have to say this. Our founding fathers in the United States were wise to prohibit, in the Constitution, the establishment of a state sponsored religious body.

Read Debbie's commentary on this situation by clicking here.


Perhaps there is still hope for the Brit's, after all. Prime Minister Gordon Brown has denounced the Archbishop of Canterbury's suggestion that Sharia Law and Parliamentary Law can co-exist:

The Prime Minister rapidly distanced himself from Dr Williams's view. Gordon Brown's spokesman said: "Our general position is that sharia law cannot be used as a justification for committing breaches of English law, nor should the principles of sharia law be included in a civil court for resolving contractual disputes.

THERE'S that stiff upper lip!


Now the ruling body of the Church of England have begun to weigh in on this still developing situation, calling for the resignation of the Archbishop:

A senior Church of England clergyman called today for the resignation of the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, over his remarks supporting Sharia in England.

The call, from a long-standing member of the Church's governing body, the General Synod, demonstrated the strength of the backlash Dr Williams that faces from within his own Church — as well as from political and other faith leaders.

The senior Synod member, who insisted on remaining anonymous, told The Times: "A lot of people will now have lost confidence in him. I am just so shocked, and cannot believe a man of his intelligence could be so gullible. I can only assume that all the Muslims he meets are senior leaders of the community who tell him what a wonderful book the Koran is.

"There have been a lot of calls today for him to resign. I don't suppose he will take any notice, but yes, he should resign."

Personally, I have to agree. He SHOULD resign.

Once and Always, an American Fighting Man


Thursday, February 7, 2008

Weighing in on Romney's Withdrawal

For many days now, since the departure of Fred Thompson from the race,
I have been studying the other options left open to us in the other

This is what the primaries are for, for the elimination of all but the
top contender for the party to be placed against the top party of the

Roger so eloquently wrote the other day about the battle between good
and evil that we are engaged in in our war against the terrorist
threats that have attacked our nation. He's absolutely right. We are
in a war for our very existence, whether we realize it or not, or
choose to accept that as reality.

A is A, it cannot be anything but A, or it would be a contradiction,
and we all know that I have been saying for some time that
contradictions cannot exist. A thing either is or it is not. We are in
a war facing an evil that wishes to see our destruction.

Cassy, I will agree with you that John McCain is an egoist. I
recognize that quality full and well as I have also been called one
myself, and rightly so. Perhaps it was that ego, that drive of will,
that drove him to survive years of torture and abuse as a prisoner of
war in Vietnam. That experience alone does not qualify him for the
Presidency, true, nor am I particularly thrilled with any candidate
who has no experience in the world of business/industry.

That being said: I can not stand idly by and allow either of two other
candidates whom I consider to be equally evil to be elected into the
leadership of our nation, especially when one of them has a blatant
and recorded history of animosity and vitriol aimed AT our nation's
armed forces.

In my mind, I still consider Fred Thompson to have been THE candidate
who would have brought balance and leadership into the White House,
something we are in desperate need of as a nation. For whatever
reasons, and we can speculate from sun up until sun down next year on
the reasons his campaign didn't take off, but the fact remains that it
did not. A is A. It is my opinion, based upon research and
exploration, ergo, information, that the two candidates from the other
side are in collusion with the forces of evil that would see us
destroyed, either by overt or covert action; direct or indirect action.

If we are to survive, we must do what we must do in order to keep evil
out of the White House, out of the Presidency.

McCain, despite his shortcomings on many other issues, does recognize
that we are in a war for our survival.

I will vote in the general elections, and if McCain is the front
runner, my vote will be for him.

It is what it is, no more, no less.

Once and Always, an American Fighting Man


Sunday, February 3, 2008

Health Care by Gunpoint

I have heard it said recently and on several occasions, "if you think health care is expensive now, wait until it's free."

Hillary Clinton has driven that point home today by announcing that she "might be willing" to garnish the wages of those who do not voluntarily purchase health care coverage under her plan.

Democrat Hillary Rodham Clinton said Sunday she might be willing to have workers' wages garnisheed if they refuse to buy health insurance to achieve coverage for all Americans.

The New York senator has criticized presidential rival Barack Obama for pushing a health plan that would not require universal coverage. Clinton has not always specified the enforcement measures she would embrace, but when pressed during a television interview, she said: "I think there are a number of mechanisms" that are possible, including "going after people's wages, automatic enrollment."

She went on to say that this would apply to those who could afford insurance but chose not to purchase it.

The questions in my mind (if you haven't noticed in reading me before, I always have questions):

1. Who determines whom can afford insurance and whom can't? What are the criteria for making such determinations? What are the lines of demarcation for deciding at what level one can or can not afford?

2. Where will funding for such a regulatory administrative program come from? Will it come from the funding that has been forced from the citizenry by point of the gun by the government or will it come from some other program, which would also, by the way, by funded by taxpayer money (your money)?

3. Are there any plans for addressing the cost of prescription drugs, the high cost of hospital stays, the overcharging of patients for such basic things as Tylenol, bandages, or cotton swabs?

4. It is a proven fact that increasing the levels of bureaucracy only creates more waste and abuse. What does Senator Clinton propose to streamline the nation's health care industry as opposed to further complicating it with a large governmental agency that accomplishes nothing other than to bleed more money from the American taxpayer?

In looking comparatively at the Canadian system, the crumbling British system, and the declining systems of mainland Europe, can we truly not learn from the mistakes of others and determine that we will not go down the same path of failure that others have already traveled?

Or are we so used to having the government tell us how that they know better how to spend our money that we are willing to stake our health care industry (ergo, our very lives) on the competence of yet another governmental bureaucracy?

One should bear well in mind that a bureaucracy is an agency in which it's members are promoted to their level of incompetence. Is this what we want to do to ourselves?

I am not saying that there are not problems with the health care system. Not by any means. What I am saying, however, is DO YOU as an American citizen trust your government with your very life? And WHERE, exactly, does it say in the Constitution that the government has the right to force the citizenry to purchase anything, to the inclusion of health care coverage?

Once and Always, an American Fighting Man


Friday, February 1, 2008

The Tet Offensive Forty Years Later

Forty years. According to some ways of calculating, that is considered to be the length of time for a full generation.

Forty years. According to the Bible, the length of time that Israel wandered in the Sinai Peninsula after escaping Egyptian bondage.

Forty years of the world turning, forty years of global conflicts, the rise and fall of dictators, of military regimes, of negotiations.

Forty years of what came to be a black eye for the American military.

It has been forty years today since the Tet Offensive. It has been largely undiscussed by the American media today, but it has not been forgotten in Vietnam.

Vietnam on Friday marked 40 years since the Tet Offensive with colourful military parades of its veterans and re-enactments of the surprise wave of urban assaults that marked a turning point in the war.

Communist Party leaders and military chiefs watched as former guerrillas and regular soldiers filed past Ho Chi Minh City's Reunification Palace, formerly the presidential palace of the US-backed Saigon regime ousted in 1975.

Youths in black Viet Cong pajamas with models of AK-47 assault rifles and rocket launchers joined the parade, as did women carrying fruit baskets on shoulder poles, recalling the way arms and bombs were smuggled into the city.

"The 1968 Tet Offensive opened a new page in the Vietnam war and struck a blow to the imperialist Americans' will to continue their aggression," said Le Thanh Hai, using the rhetoric of the Communist Party he heads in the city.

"It is one of the most glorious chapters in Vietnam's history."

In a parade of more than 10,000 veterans, service members, and others held today, the celebration was a dual event, marking the 40th anniversary of the Tet Offensive as well as the founding of the Indochina Communist Party on 3FEB1930.

Sharing the podium with Vietnam's Communist Party leader Nong Duc Manh was Nguyen Thi Binh, signer for the southern Provisional Revolutionary Government, former vice president of Vietnam, and signer of the 1973 Paris peace accords.

Tet has become, in recent years, a center of growing controversy among historians, military analists, and the intelligence community. It is widely conceded, now, that the United States and the South Vietnamese greatly overestimated the North Vietnamese and the Viet Cong. Retired Vietnamese military commanders have admitted in recent years that they were suffering heavy casualties and taking heavy losses in fighting the Americans. Congressional leaders and military commanders clashed on their opinions regarding who was actually winning. Assertions by General William Westmoreland that the U.S. was on the offensive against the communist uprising were met with confusion and doubt by the American public. The American political machine began to downscale operations in Vietnam, eventually leaving the South Vietnamese on their own in 1973. Saigon finally fell to the North in 1975.

One has to wonder, when hearing Senator Harry Reid announcing that the war in Iraq is "lost," and General Peter Petraeus denounced as "General Betray Us," if we are not seeing history repeating itself today.

"Those who do not learn the lessons of history are doomed to repeat it."

Once and Always, an American Fighting Man