Thursday, February 25, 2010


From blogger David Bellavia:

My grandfather was a reluctant hero. Most WWII vets are. There was never a need for them to share their experiences when they came home. The culture of post war America was almost Victorian and made it completely socially unacceptable for them to tell any story of the war that wasn’t sanitized. The WW II veteran did more than cow to the social convention of the era, they convinced themselves that society would not benefit from knowing of their sacrifice. It took almost two generations for these stories to come out.

Steven Spielberg was the first to show the masses that WWII veterans actually bled in the war.

There were no other stories my grandfather told that had the description and pain of those he told about the war. The only stories he painted perfectly were those of the worst days of his life. He would tell me that the war had motivated him to be a better husband, father to my mother and her twelve siblings — but it took something away from him that he would never get back.

I didn’t know what that was until I felt it missing in myself.

Today our nation still can’t handle stories like this. The masses support the troops, but cringe when they find out why the kid down the street is actually a hero. Few want to know why what we do is so worthy of support.

The population seemed too consumed by the victimizing stories of Jessica Lynch or the criminality of Lynndie England at Abu Gharib to waste time talking about Brian Chontosh or Jason Dunham. We can feel pity and outrage about circumstances that are common — Kidnapping or abuse. There are those who have no idea how to handle those who kill in the name of liberty. We are disturbed knowing that there is little in this life worth dying for, but so much that is worth killing over.

And if we lose that class of American, we lose our national soul.


How flipping stupid are people? Or is it base, childish partisanship? Are some people so damn scared of a black President [or one who doesn't live by a pretend John Wayne code of machismo]? The usual suspect has the conspicuous relation for the ignorant masses to eat up:

Frank Gaffney, right wing idiot extraordinaire.....has the lunatic fringe take on the Missile Defense Agency logo:

The Obama administration’s determined effort to reduce America’s missile defense capabilities initially seemed to be just standard Leftist fare — of a piece with the Democratic base’s visceral hostility to the idea of protecting us against ballistic missile threats. A just-unveiled symbolic action suggests, however, that something even more nefarious is afoot.

Team Obama’s anti-anti-missile initiatives are not simply acts of unilateral disarmament of the sort to be expected from an Alinsky acolyte. They seem to fit an increasingly obvious and worrying pattern of official U.S. submission to Islam and the theo-political-legal program the latter’s authorities call Shariah.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

What definition of Terrorism?

As usual Glenn Greenwald of captures my sentiments much better than I can sum up.

All of this underscores, yet again, that Terrorism is simultaneously the single most meaningless and most manipulated word in the American political lexicon. The term now has virtually nothing to do with the act itself and everything to do with the identity of the actor, especially his or her religious identity. It has really come to mean: "a Muslim who fights against or even expresses hostility towards the United States, Israel and their allies." That's why all of this confusion and doubt arose yesterday over whether a person who perpetrated a classic act of Terrorism should, in fact, be called a Terrorist: he's not a Muslim and isn't acting on behalf of standard Muslim grievances against the U.S. or Israel, and thus does not fit the "definition." One might concede that perhaps there's some technical sense in which term might apply to Stack, but as Fox News emphasized: it's not "terrorism in the larger sense that most of us are used to . . . terrorism in that capital T way." We all know who commits terrorism in "that capital T way," and it's not people named Joseph Stack.

All of this would be an interesting though not terribly important semantic matter if not for the fact that the term Terrorist plays a central role in our political debates. It is the all-justifying term for anything the U.S. Government does. Invasions, torture, due-process-free detentions, military commissions, drone attacks, warrantless surveillance, obsessive secrecy, and even assassinations of American citizens are all justified by the claim that it's only being done to "Terrorists," who, by definition, have no rights. Even worse, one becomes a "Terrorist" not through any judicial adjudication or other formal process, but solely by virtue of the untested, unchecked say-so of the Executive Branch. The President decrees someone to be a Terrorist and that's the end of that: uncritical followers of both political parties immediately justify anything done to the person on the ground that he's a Terrorist (by which they actually mean: he's been accused of being one, though that distinction -- between presidential accusations and proof -- is not one they recognize).

If we're really going to vest virtually unlimited power in the Government to do anything it wants to people they call "Terrorists," we ought at least to have a common understanding of what the term means. But there is none. It's just become a malleable, all-justifying term to allow the U.S. Government carte blanche to do whatever it wants to Muslims it does not like or who do not like it (i.e., The Terrorists). It's really more of a hypnotic mantra than an actual word: its mere utterance causes the nation blindly to cheer on whatever is done against the Muslims who are so labeled.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Right on cue

Virginians elected Bob McDonnell for Governor this past election, and with all of the problems facing this state [like any other], McDonnell opted to tackle what is clearly one of the most egregious affronts to bigots everywhere......discrimination against sexual orientation.

Gay and lesbian state workers in Virginia are no longer specifically protected against discrimination, thanks to a little-noticed change made by new Gov. Bob McDonnell.

McDonnell (R) on Feb. 5 signed an executive order that prohibits discrimination "on the basis of race, sex, color, national origin, religion, age, political affiliation, or against otherwise qualified persons with disabilities," as well as veterans.

It rescinds the order that Gov. Tim Kaine signed Jan. 14, 2006 as one of his first actions. After promising a "fair and inclusive" administration in his inaugural address, Kaine (D) added veterans to the non-discrimination policy - and sexual orientation.


Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Who'da Thunk it?

The "Independent" Tea Party [funded by Republican operatives and front groups] is essentially being absorbed into the GOP.

In front of a crowd of Republican Party activists and the tea-party movement’s rank and file here on Tuesday night, former Alaska governor Sarah Palin seemed to put a damper on speculation that she might consider running for president in 2012 as a third-party candidate.

Asked what her advice would be to conservatives as the November elections approach, Palin first lavished praise on the Tea Party movement, calling it "a grand movement" and adding, "I love it because it’s all about the people."

But she quickly pivoted to the broader question of whether the Tea Party movement might successfully field its own candidates in national elections, and on that point she sounded far from convinced.

"Now the smart thing will be for independents who are such a part of this Tea Party movement to, I guess, kind of start picking a party," Palin said. "Which party reflects how that smaller, smarter government steps to be taken? Which party will best fit you? And then because the Tea Party movement is not a party, and we have a two-party system, they’re going to have to pick a party and run one or the other: ‘R’ or ‘D’."

I've said it before and I'll say it again: my Gadsden Flag stays in mothballs until this fad of faux-patriotism/faux-Independent it surely will.

Wednesday Beer News

The flamboyantly competitive Scottish brewery BrewDog has released Sink the Bismarck!, a "quadruple IPA" that they say is the most alcoholic in the world at 41%. BrewDog had previously earned similar attention last year with their then-record-setting 32% ABV beer, Tactical Nuclear Penguin, but rival brewery Schorschbrau just weeks ago (briefly) reclaimed the beer potency title with their Schorschbock, at 40% ABV, prompting Brewdog's latest counterattack.

Sink the Bismarck!'s 41% ABV renders it more alcoholic than whiskey or vodka. BrewDog has preempted the expected accusations of irresponsibility from British alcohol awareness groups, and explains that the beer should be consumed responsibly, "in spirit-sized measures."

rewDog is no stranger to controversy over the strength of its product. Prior to the 40% Tactical Nuclear Penguin, their 18.2% Tokyo was criticized by alcohol awareness groups, so it crafted a low alcoholic brew called Nanny State.


Saturday, February 6, 2010


That's what the DC news channels would have you believe. Although this could be a record snowfall for this area, it's hardly the end of the world.....yet grocery store shelves are bare.

We may see close to three feet before the final flakes fall this evening. Now I'm only hoping they call a snow day for Monday. My semi-retarded wife loves to shovel snow for some we're not trapped. I kid...she's a gorgeous little worker bee....

This is from this morning...and it's still snowing.

Friday, February 5, 2010

More nonsense.......

from the people who believe that criminals abide by gun laws:

Over the past few months, more and more gun owners have been gathering at restaurants and coffee shops like Starbucks with guns strapped to their hips, intimidating fellow patrons.

Businesses can legally prohibit guns from being carried in their establishments – and so far, Peet's Coffee & Tea and California Pizza Kitchen have heeded customer concerns and barred the open carrying of guns.

But Starbucks is the open carrying of firearms in its stores, despite protests from loyal customers.

Because of Starbucks' refusal, the Brady Campaign has teamed up with CREDO Action to tell Starbucks to keep guns out of its coffee shops.

The practice of packing heat in places like Starbucks is intimidating and could be potentially dangerous to our families and communities – and it must be stopped.

It's everyone's right to sit in a restaurant or coffee shop with their families without intimidation or fear of guns, either concealed or openly carried.

Under the law, Starbucks has the right to adopt a gun-free policy, with an exception for uniformed police officers. Such a policy can easily be implemented in most cases by putting up signs at store entrances.

We need to tell Starbucks to bar guns in its stores. These individuals who have been carrying guns into Starbucks have all the firepower of a SWAT team, and none of the law enforcement training.

The more idiotic statements have been placed in bold by yours truly. These vacuous do-gooders don't seem to realize that pistols aren't remotely the equivalent of a SWAT team....and I also have a right to sit in a restaurant or coffee shop with the right to defend myself...a right enshrined in the Constitution of the United States. I don't recall seeing an addendum about the perception of safety in restaurants.

But I do love, and will co-opt their nifty logo.

Support your local Starbucks!


This Scotch has been on the rocks for a century.

Five crates of Scotch whisky and two of brandy have been recovered by a team restoring an Antarctic hut used more than 100 years ago by famed polar explorer Ernest Shackleton.

Ice cracked some of the bottles that had been left there in 1909, but the restorers said Friday they are confident the five crates contain intact bottles "given liquid can be heard when the crates are moved."

New Zealand Antarctic Heritage Trust team leader Al Fastier said the team thought there were two crates and were amazed to find five.

"The unexpected find of the brandy crates, one labeled Chas. Mackinlay & Co and the other labeled The Hunter Valley Distillery Limited Allandale (Australia) are a real bonus," said Fastier.

Ice has cracked some of the crates and formed inside them. Fastier said in a statement that would make extracting the contents delicate, but the trust would decide how to do so in coming weeks.

Richard Paterson, master blender at Whyte and Mackay, whose company supplied the Mackinlay's whisky for Shackleton, described the find as "a gift from the heavens for whisky lovers."

"If the contents can be confirmed, safely extracted and analyzed, the original blend may be able to be replicated. Given the original recipe no longer exists, this may open a door into history," he said in a statement.