Saturday, December 31, 2011

Fodder for Thought

Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?
Then he is not omnipotent.

Is he able, but not willing?
Then he is malevolent.

Is he both able and willing?
Then whence cometh evil?

Is he neither able nor willing?
Then why call him God?

After engaging an upstanding fellow in a debate over the conclusion of the Iraq adventure and the current problems in Afghanistan over at TAH, I dug up one of the many files in my digital library for anyone else who may be a foreign policy nerd.

The Last Veterans

Very engaging read, if you love history and honor Veterans.


The American Politics of Terrorism

Lego Zombie Awesomeness

Go see the rest....

Loyalty Oaths?

Though a registered Libertarian, I can vote in Virginia's open primary. After seeing the news that the Virginia GOP will require voters to sign a "Loyalty Oath" to cast a vote in the primary.
Less than a week after announcing that only two GOP presidential candidates qualified to appear on their ballot, the Republican Party of Virginia has adopted a new measure that may leave voters in the state scratching their heads: a loyalty oath.
On Wednesday the Virginia State Board of Elections approved a request from the Virginia GOP that will require voters to sign a loyalty oath in order to participate in the state’s presidential primary on March 6. A spokesman for the state’s election board tells ABC News that although some details are still in the works, voters wishing to cast a ballot must take the pledge.
ABC News

I do believe that if I'm able to, I will be voting in this cycle's primary. I have to see this for myself.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

The Snickers Bar Theory of the Afghanistan War

An awesomely simple and truthful dissection of OEF-A, from Spencer Ackerman:

Ask yourself this: if there was no such thing as al-Qaida, would we ever fight the Taliban? If your answer is no, you understand where Biden’s coming from. But if your answer is yes, then let us visit the land of delicious candy.

Imagine a Snickers bar. The Taliban are the chocolate. al-Qaida is the precious gooey nougat inside. We care about the nougat. Nothing must get in the way of our pursuit of the nougat. The chocolate is in our way. So much worse for the chocolate.

The trouble with the Afghanistan war is that right now we care too much about the chocolate. You could make an argument that it’s worth caring about the chocolate because it’s better for us if the nougat goes uncovered. I found that compelling for a while, and to a degree still do. But we’re eating too much chocolate in southern Afghanistan; it’s hurting us in eastern Afghanistan; and it pulls us too deeply into the machinations of Afghan governance, which is like eating the wrapper.

Plus we’re finding out something significant in the drone war. We can eat a lot of nougat without eating any chocolate. The problem there (and also in Afghanistan) is that we also destroy innocent peanuts, with which the Taliban and al-Qaida deliberately intermingle. But we have a viable model for a nougat-centric strategy with minimal chocolate distraction. Biden, you’ll recall, pushed that model from the start.

There’s also a diplomatic reason for Biden to say the Taliban aren’t the U.S. enemy. Apparently, secret Taliban peace talks are at a critical juncture. Even if you don’t buy the Snickers Bar Theory of the Afghanistan War — and hey, look: I had to do this before Tom Friedman did — perhaps you’ll agree that we have an interest in ending the war through a peace deal, and if so, then Biden’s comment is useful to that effort. If you don’t agree that we actually do have an interest in a peace deal, then I’m afraid you’re advocating a chocolate-based diet that will lead to clogged American arteries.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Roses Baby!


Saturday, November 26, 2011


Thursday, November 17, 2011

Occupy WTF?

I haven't honestly cared one way or the other about the self styled 99%. I can't believe its garnered so much media and pundit attention. Nor have I had to experience the tired chants and vapid bellowing of the new hippie generation first hand.

But I will say're right to peaceably protest does not revoke my right of free passage. Any of these pale, rat bearded hygiene-free, Che shirt wearing knuckleheads keep me from getting to my place of employment, of home from said fist might accidentally occupy the same space as their face.

Walk around with signs asking for free stuff all you wish. Camp on the sidewalk, feel good about your self-righteous intentions all you want.

Just don't dare and try to keep me from occupying the place where I earn a paycheck.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Quote of the Day

You cannot subcontract out the duties of President.

-Tea Party Nation...speaking of Herman Cain

Cain finally says something intelligent

GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain said he supports the ability of states to make medical marijuana available as a treatment for patients.
"If states want to legalize medical marijuana, I think that's a state's right," Cain said while campaigning in Iowa. "Because one of my overriding approaches to looking at all  of these issues -- most of them belong at the state, because when you do something federally ... you try to force one-size-fits-all."

Oh allegedly conservative show to rail against the allegedly conservative media

How far has true Conservatism fallen by the wayside when celebutwits have shows like this?
As we all know, Conservatives have few outlets in the media. Other than Fox News and a few talk radio shows, Conservatives are greatly outnumbered. TV talk shows and news programs are inundated with liberal robots spewing their hatred toward all-things-Conservative; so the folks at Patriot Update have created an alternative.

As we all know, if the media were institutionally liberal, they'd do a far better job taking apart these hacks who really believe that they're Conservative.

They're not Conservative...they're Republican....huge difference. They're just not smart enough to realize it.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Why does Michelle Bachmann hate General Petraeus?

"Obama is allowing the ACLU to run the CIA" - Bachmann
I'm sure General Petraeus would be interested in that bit of information.

"The CIA is no longer interrogating anyone" - Bachmann
The High Value Detainee Interrogation Group would be interested in that sort of intelligence, no?

"Michelle Bachmann is an idiot" - Me

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Mad Max All-American Style!

The Local Motors Rally Fighter is literally the Frankenstein of the car world and looks like the love child of the Dark Knight’s tumbler and a Maserati Gran Turismo. If its arresting form seems strangely familiar to you, it’s probably because of the crowd-sourced origins of the Rally Fighter’s design, which utilizes a hodgepodge of parts sourced from a wide swath of major automakers. For example, you’d find the Rally Fighter’s door handles on the Mazda MX-5 Miata, taillights on the Honda Civic Coupe, steering column on Ford’s F-Series pickups and side mirrors on the Dodge Challenger.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Marketing Genius!


Thursday, November 3, 2011

Your tax dollars at work

Is this a case of "oh well both parties do it" or hypocrisy on behalf of the party that trumpeted they were going to end it?

In Congress, a really good law is like a really good movie. If audiences liked it the first time, they’re going to love a remake — or two.
That appeared to be the logic Tuesday evening as the House debated whether “In God We Trust” should be the national motto. Of course, “In God We Trust” already is the national motto, guaranteed by an act of Congress in 1956.
And “In God We Trust” had already been reaffirmed once before as the national motto, by another act of Congress in 2002.
Still, on Tuesday, the House spent 35 minutes debating whether the motto should be re-reaffirmed.
Last year, when Democrats controlled the House, they passed more than 250 commemorative resolutions, honoring everything from motherhood to motor homes.
When Republicans took over, they promised that would change. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) set out what aides called “the Cantor Rule.”
“Each day, we will hold ourselves accountable by asking the following questions: Are our efforts addressing job creation and the economy; are they cutting spending; and are they shrinking the size of the federal government while protecting and expanding individual liberty?” Cantor said at the beginning of this term. “If not, why are we doing it?”
So how does this re-reaffirmation fit into that?


Is this the smaller government you want?

Monday, October 31, 2011

Zombie Max™ - Just in case!

Be PREPARED – supply yourself for the Zombie Apocalypse with Zombie Max™ ammunition from Hornady®! Loaded with PROVEN Z-Max™ bullets... yes PROVEN Z-Max™ bullets (have you seen a Zombie?). Make sure your "bug out bag" is ready with nothing but the best!


Sunday, October 30, 2011 true....

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Freedoms I wish the military were defending

From my friends at Militant Libertarian:
The freedom to fly without being sexually violated.
The freedom to purchase a gun without a waiting period.
The freedom to grow, sell, and smoke marijuana.
The freedom to sell goods and services for whatever amount a buyer is willing to pay.
The freedom to make more than six withdrawals from one’s savings account each month.
The freedom to drink alcohol as a legal, voting adult under twenty-one years of age.
The freedom to purchase Sudafed over the counter.
The freedom to gamble without government approval.
The freedom to deposit more than $10,000 in a bank account without government scrutiny.
The freedom to not be stopped at a checkpoint and have one’s car searched without a warrant.
The freedom to sell any good or offer any service on Craigslist.
The freedom to fill in a “wetland” on one’s own property.
The freedom to cut someone’s hair for money without a license.
The freedom to home-brew over 100 gallons of beer per year.
The freedom to advertise tobacco products on television.
The freedom to smoke Cuban cigars.
The freedom to not wear a seatbelt.
The freedom to be secure in our persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures.
The freedom to keep the fruits of one’s labor.
The freedom of an employer and an employee to negotiate for any wage.
The freedom to discriminate against anyone for any reason.
The freedom to videotape the police in public.
The freedom of businesses to hire and fire whomever they choose.
The freedom to not be brutalized by the police.
The freedom to not be arrested for victimless crimes.
The freedom to sell raw milk.
The freedom to not have one’s child subject to unnecessary vaccinations.
The freedom to not have one’s child unjustly taken by Child Protective Services.
The freedom to not be subject to the Patriot Act.
The freedom for kids to set up neighborhood lemonade stands.
The freedom to not have every facet of business and society regulated.
The freedom to stay in one’s home during a hurricane.
The freedom to not have our e-mail and phone conversations monitored.
The freedom to travel to and trade with any country.
The freedom to be left alone.

An Open Letter to Liberal Americans

Silverfiddle authors a blog - Western Hero - which you should really check out...don't forget the comments section either.

I feel compelled to post and link his "An Open Letter to Liberal Americans", that is a thoughtfully compelling read.
I wrote this over a year ago and forgot about it.  I think it still applies today...
I am a conservative with pernicious libertarian tendencies who believes we should examine our politicians and probe their logic, not worship them.  We should be skeptical, very skeptical, of everything that proceeds from their loquacious gobs.  I also don't want any of them feeling too comfortable up there in the District of Criminals.
Thomas Jefferson said it best:
When the people fear their government, there is tyranny; when the government fears the people, there is liberty.--Thomas Jefferson
I think George Bush was no conservative, but I believe he is a sincere and honest man, as politicians go.  He is not Hitler, he was not in on any 9/11 conspiracy, and VP Cheney didn't shoot holes in the New Orleans levees with his Halliburton cannon.  If you back me into a corner, I will reluctantly admit that Bill Clinton was a pretty good president, private peccadilloes aside.
I have a grudging respect for Hillary Clinton, although I disagree with her politics.  She's a hard worker and she does her homework.  
Conservatives and Liberals will never agree on many subjects, but here are three things I hope we can all agree upon:  1) Make the politicians prove it; 2) Listen to one another; 3) Dial it back. 
Make Them Prove It
I will start by pleading guilty to not paying attention as George Bush and the GOP went wilding with our money.  My days of not standing up and questioning those I voted for are now over.
We are living in the age of rampant, naive credulity, and it needs to stop.  Our default position should be to disbelieve anything a politician says until she can prove it.  While we're at it, let's make them defend their big ideas in light of the US Constitution.
Taking this hyper-skeptical approach will keep them from tragically wasting our blood and our treasure.  There is a selfish partisan interest here as well.  By holding our own politicians and candidates' feet to the fire, and spitting them out when they're found to be full of crap, we preserve the reputation of our respective parties.  
No more letting them lie to us with a wink and a nod just to get elected.  The incinerator at the bottom of the memory hole has been extinguished.  With the internet, America's digital memory is now infinite.   Lying and political shape-shifting doesn't work in an age when I can sit in my underwear and research everything a politician has said since he was in grade school.  
I share no ideology with Dennis Kucinich or Bernie Sanders, but they are probably two of the most honest politicians in DC, and I can at least admire them for that.
Listen to One Another
Left and right are poles apart, by definition.  No one should have to listen to hysterical ideologues screaming insults, but we should lend an ear to reasoned voices on the other side.  You don't have to compromise your principles to do it, and you may learn something.  
Wanna know one area where the right has jumped on the lefty bandwagon?  Opposition to crony capitalism.  Conservative mistrust most likely springs from a different motive, but we've seen the light!  We agree with you that government should not be in bed with corporations and bankers.  No special favors! 
Another area where the right has seen the light?  The primacy of the US Constitution.  A few years ago, only libertarians and liberal social activists referred to that venerable document.  Granted, the left narrowly focused in on the bill of rights, usually the 1st, 4th and 5th Amendments, but they could nonetheless claim to be bigger constitutionalists than their ideological adversaries on the right.
No more.  Our disillusion with traditional Country Club Republicanism stacked upon our distaste for postmodern liberalism has left us nowhere else to go.  So let's rally 'round the constitution and argue over what those words mean.  It is so much more productive than the tired bread and circuses of Republican team versus the Democratic team and "my politician is better than your politician."
Dial It Back
I have excoriated President Obama.  I got so mad once that I put red Mickey Mouse ears on him.  He's the president, so I should have more respect, as I thought the left should have shown President Bush.
I remember thinking at the time that George Bush did not make the case for invading Iraq.  But everybody this side of Russ Feingold was too scared to call him on it, so off we went.
I cut him too much slack because I liked him (I still do).  I blindly trusted him on everything from the Patriot Act to No Child Left Behind.  Some of that stuff needed to be done, but no one on the right seriously questioned him.  We did not have a critical debate. 
You know what would have made it easier for me to part ways with Bush on some of these issues?  If foaming-at-the-mouth leftists had not been jumping all over him like a mob of diseased orangutans, vomiting insults and hysterical rage at him.  Had much of that legitimate criticism been well-stated and not couched in ad hominem, I would have found it much easier to jump on board.  I was in the military at the time, and it seriously seemed like it was President Bush and us against the world.
We're All Americans
We will never agree on abortion, gay marriage, or health care, but we should all agree that no politician gets a free pass.  We the People can also all agree on a few founding principles like a wall of separation between business and state, and a kick in the bum for crony capitalists and the corrupt political hogs who wallow with them.  Maybe we can even be friendly to those on the other side who are not spewing hatred our way.
Am I dreaming?  Probably, but I feel compelled to say this in the name of ideological ecumenism.
Western Hero 

I thought it was 'the Gays' who wanted 'special rights'?

Rep. Trent Franks (R-AZ)
We understand that when we’re granting the rights of marriage, that that’s a special right Tony, that’s something we have suggested is clearly the best possible way to see children raised through the best possible environment to launch the next generation, we believe that with all of our hearts as a society, I think most people understand that. So we’ve set aside this special area of the law that says we’re going to respect traditional marriage of a man and a woman because that is the launching pad of the next generation. Let’s face it; we have made a special exception in the law that gives special consideration and recognition to that.
Then, just when you still might have thought that he was at all sane: 
 And when people would come along and blur that distinction and say ‘well that should apply in every way’ it not only is a complete undermining of the principles of family and marriage and the hope of future generations but it completely begins to see our society break down to the extent that that foundational unit of the family that is the hope of survival of this country is diminished to the extent that it literally is a threat to the nation’s survival in the long run.
Who votes for these people? 

Political Lexicography

A great short piece by noted terrorism expert Paul Pillar.
One of the most misleading and distracting formulations that has been applied to the countering of terrorism is the notion that this effort is a “war.” The notion was in full bloom with the Bush administration's “war on terror.” Terrorism being a tactic, this concept, as Zbigniew Brzezinski once observed, makes as much sense as a “war on blitzkrieg.” The “war” idea also ignores several other realities: that military force is only one of several tools that can be used for counterterrorist purposes (law enforcement resources and the criminal justice system being a couple of the others); that counterterrorism does not entail a struggle against a single identifiable foe, as a real war does; and that counterterrorism does not have identifiable beginnings and endings, as real wars do.
Applying the “war” notion to counterterrorism has several negative consequences. It overly militarizes counterterrorism itself, encouraging excessive reliance on the military instrument. It invites the tendentious association of counterterrorism with unrelated military adventures or misadventures, as happened with the Bush administration's Iraq War. It further invites the open-ended use of extraordinary and even extra-legal methods, as occurred with the Bush administration's practices on detention and interception of communications. It elevates terrorists from the status of criminals to that of warriors.
And so yet another important function of government, like many others, has been turned into either an ideological gesture or a campaign talking point.
The National Interest 

The Timely Demise of a Loon

It couldn't come any sooner for the sanity of American politics. The tea party group American Majority has asked Bachmann to quit the Presidential race, citing "It is clear that the campaign has become less about reform and more about her personal effort to stay relevant and sell books”.

And as we can see, it really is time for her to quietly slip away from the stage. Just yesterday, she sunk to a new low by trying [sadly again] to tie Obama to Islam and "anti-American" policies [conveniently nobody can ever define "anti-American"].
A conservative popular with tea party activists and evangelical conservatives, she later linked President Barack Obama with "4,400 American lives" lost in Iraq. However, the death toll in the 8-year-old war that began under President George W. Bush had already reached 4,229 when Obama was inaugurated in 2009. It now stands at no fewer than 4,481.
As she campaigned in Iowa, now the focus of her effort to win the Republican nomination, Bachmann accused the administration of making changes in training manuals under pressure from pro-Islam groups with terrorist links.
"And now Obama is allowing terror suspect groups to write the FBI's terror training manual," she told about 75 Republican activists in an eastern Iowa hotel conference room.
The FBI has not removed Islam from training material, said an FBI official who was not authorized to speak publicly on the matter and requested anonymity.
The FBI has been conducting a comprehensive review of its training materials after it was revealed that what officials termed an inaccurate description of Islam, one that linked the religion to terrorism, was being used in some of the bureau's training programs. Last month, FBI officials said the agency was undertaking the review in light of an analyst's criticism of Islam during a lecture last spring.
In her remarks Friday, Bachmann broadly painted the effort as trying to remove the link between Islam and anti-American terrorism sponsored by radical Islamic extremists.
"And so now the White House has scrubbed all Islamic terms from the national counterterrorism strategy. The White House has removed all Islamic terms from the Pentagon's report on the Fort Hood shooting. And now, Obama is allowing terror suspect groups to write the FBI's terror training manual," she said.

Friday, October 28, 2011

....I want.....

Let's face it: there are some people who will buy damn near anything with Steve McQueen's name on it — *cough* us *cough* — but this is one of those times that you needn't be ashamed about it. Based on the classic T100 and inspired by the Trophy TR6 McQueen rode during the stunt scene from The Great Escape, the Triumph Bonneville T100 Steve McQueen Edition Motorcycle ($TBA) will be limited to just 1,100 bikes, and features a Matt Khaki Green paint job, the late actor's signature on the side covers, a solo seat, blacked out headlamp, luggage rack, wheel rims, hubs, handlebars, rear springs, mirrors, and mudguard supports, and arrived individually numbered, with a plaque on the handlebar clamp and a certificate of authenticity. 

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

I thought the alleged "party of Individual Liberty" didn't want to intrude into your bedroom?

"One of the things I will talk about, that no president has talked about before, is I think the dangers of contraception in this country. It’s not okay. It’s a license to do things in a sexual realm that is counter to how things are supposed to be. [Sex] is supposed to be within marriage. It’s supposed to be for purposes that are yes, conjugal…but also procreative. That’s the perfect way that a sexual union should happen. This is special and it needs to be seen as special." 
You Tube

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

There's no way that this cannot be good.....

Uncommon Brewers: Organic Bacon Brown Ale

Yes, this is a meat beer. The Santa Cruz, Calif., brewery chucks in hunks of applewood-cured pork into the process to give this sweet brown ale a smoky, meaty taste. "I enjoy bacon and I thought using a nut brown would be the way to do it," said brewmaster and founder Alec Stefansky. Stefansky developed the beer with fellow brewer Reed VanderSchaaf as a companion to yet another strange brew, the Rubidus Red Ale. They weren't pouring it at the festival, but Stefansky said the latter was made with candy cap mushrooms, which grow wild in their area and give off notes of maple. The best part, he said, is that if you drink a few pints at night, then in the morning, you smell like maple syrup -- with the bacon beer, it's a complete meal experience.


Sunday, October 2, 2011

The Perfect Day

It is possible to take something beautiful and lasting out of the heart-wrenching experience of seeing the animal you love move inexorably toward death. Nobody can take the grief away, nor should anyone try, but our love for animals is nothing but a gift, and it keeps on giving, even when they go home.
A man named Harry, an Iraq war veteran and tennis coach from Minnesota, hit upon a simple and profound idea to transform this otherwise sad experience into a blessed one.
Read the rest here 

Monday, September 26, 2011

Nevermind.......20 years later

This is a little bit of genius, the actual baby from the original Nevermind album re-creates his infant-swimming iconographic album cover two decades later to celebrate the anniversary of Nirvana's classic rock album. Time flies.

Crap, I feel old......

Friday, September 23, 2011

This is the Party of Pretend Patriotism

Gay soldier booed at GOP debate; candidates stay mum

Some members of the GOP debate audience booed a gay soldier who asked via video whether the Republican candidates would reinstitute the recently repealed "Don't ask, don't tell" policy of banning openly gay soldiers.

After Stephen Hill, who is serving in the Army in Iraq, asked his question, a handful of members of the audience booed loudly. None of the Republican candidates responded to the audience's reaction.

I won't even broach the dishonest idiocy of Santorum's response, because he's at least entitled to his opinion.

I'm amazed at how diligent the GOP is in pushing me farther and farther away from ever casting a vote for national level candidates.

The Hill

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Man's Very Best Friend

Scout and another unknown dog lie among the rubble at Ground Zero, just two of nearly 100 search and rescue animals who helped to search for survivors

During the chaos of the 9/11 attacks, where almost 3,000 people died, nearly 100 loyal search and rescue dogs and their brave owners scoured Ground Zero for survivors.

Now, ten years on, just 12 of these heroic canines survive, and they have been commemorated in a touching series of portraits entitled Retrieved.  The dogs worked tirelessly to search for anyone trapped alive in the rubble, along with countless emergency service workers and members of the public.

Traveling across nine states in the U.S. from Texas to Maryland, Dutch photographer Charlotte Dumas, 34, captured the remaining dogs in their twilight years in their homes where they still live with their handlers, a full decade on from 9/11.

Their stories have now been compiled in a book, called Retrieved, which is published on Friday, the tenth anniversary of the attacks.

Noted for her touching portraits of animals, especially dogs, Charlotte wanted ‘Retrieved’ to mark not only the anniversary of the September 2001 attacks, but also as recognition for some of the first responders and their dogs.

‘I felt this was a turning point, especially for the dogs, who although are not forgotten, are not as prominent as the human stories involved,’ explained Charlotte, who splits her time between New York and Amsterdam.
‘They speak to us as a different species and animals are greatly important for our sense of empathy and to put things into perspective.’


Saturday, September 17, 2011

Today is Constitution Day

Were you even aware? Have you heard anything in the media? Political blogs?

Me Neither.

Constitution Day

Friday, September 16, 2011

Heroes are too rare indeed.....Dakota Meyer, MOH

For a man to charge into fire once requires grit that is instinctive in few men; to do so a second time, now knowing what awaits you, requires inner resolve beyond instinct; to repeat a third time is courage above and beyond any call of duty; to go in a fourth time is to know you will die; to go in a fifth time is beyond comprehension.

Dakota Meyer's performance was the greatest act of courage in the war, because he repeated it, and repeated it, and repeated it.

- Bing West

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Duck Fan Quide

Since we all don't have Uncle Phil as a wardrobe sugar is a handy guide to wear the correct color on game day.

Gauche......and American Ideal?

Ten years have passed and we still clutch pearls at the notion of a terrorist attack......not because of any increased capability by an extreme minority of Islamic radicals, but because it's been creatively and intrinsically tied to our sense of nationalism.

Case in point - the boorish hissy-fit the right wing punditocracy is throwing over Krugman's column. Not that Krugman said anything factually incorrect mind you....but that he dared utter sentiments that are not politically correct. The same stripe of 'patriots' who gush over the fact and principle challenged screeds of Pamela Gellar, now question Krugman's patriotism, mental health  and sanity. These same sycophants are heard to scoff and roil at speakers such as Jeremiah Wright offering opinion that we have been complicit in our own turmoil......but are never heard to question those fundamentalists who preach these attacks are God's vengeance for the 'sins' of homosexuality and 'faithlessness'.

We have terrorized ourselves far beyond that which al Qa'ida could have dreamed of. We have utterly failed in the cost-benefit analysis of the threat of terrorism. We are positioned to view even usurpation of tyrannical despotism [in the form of the 'Arab spring'] as ominous warnings of extremism morphing into statehood.........utterly oblivious to the actual condition of even the boogeyman specters, much less the motivations of the citizens who pursue any semblance of democracy.

Simple introspective analysis is discarded for talking points and patriotic catch phrases. Ritual defamation is chosen over rational debate. Politically correct is favored over political risk, which ironically circles back around in the form of politics of fear.

Many Americans feel no need to lead by example, or show any decent human trait of humility....they wish for Team USA to take the field and entertain their sense of infallibility, while distracting them from critical thought. We've set a trap for our constitutional principles and liberties, disguised as 'safeguarding' and 'protection'. Once we finally [if ever] awaken from the stupor that blinds us to the realistic level of threat terrorism poses....we'll realize that we've been our own worst enemy all along.

Terrorist groups who attack us or our allies must be ruthlessly eliminated....but that would require a significant shift in national policy. A shift that doesn't quite abide by the playbook.

Tea Party Debate Takeaways

Kudo's to Michelle Bachmann for her stand last night on the HPV vaccine and Perry's relationship to Gardasil!

Shame on the audience for booing Ron Paul on his factually correct, and easily sourced statement on the motives of terrorists vs. Muslims.

Sunday, September 11, 2011


Your media bias of the day....Updated

Steve Doocy of Fox & Friends [favorite morning show of the Christocrats] repeats the blatant lie penned by the writers at Fox Nation.

Fox News

Yep....fair and balanced.....

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Uh...the threat is who??

"Studies show that no society that has totally embraced homosexuality has lasted more than, you know, a few decades. So it’s the death knell of this country. I honestly think it’s the biggest threat our nation has, even more so than terrorism or Islam, which I think is a big threat... If you got cancer or something in your little toe, do you say, well, you know, I’m just going to forget about it because the rest of me is fine? It spreads. OK? And this stuff is deadly, and it’s spreading, and it will destroy our young people, it will destroy this nation."
Sally Kern, R-OK

THIS is what America is about

An Unlikely Hero

The Marine who found two WTC survivors

Only 12 survivors were pulled from the rubble of the World Trade Center after the towers fell on Sept. 11, despite intense rescue efforts. Two of the last three to be located and saved were Port Authority police officers. They were not discovered by a heroic firefighter, or a rescue worker, or a cop. They were discovered by Dave Karnes.
Karnes hadn't been near the World Trade Center. He wasn't even in New York when the planes hit the towers. He was in Wilton, Conn., working in his job as a senior accountant with Deloitte Touche. When the second plane hit, Karnes told his colleagues, "We're at war." He had spent 23 years in the Marine Corps infantry and felt it was his duty to help. Karnes told his boss he might not see him for a while.
Then he went to get a haircut. 

Monday, September 5, 2011

Your media bias of the day

New York Times article from 2 September 2011:

Don’t Fear Islamic Law in America

FOX Nation on 4 September 2011:

NY Times: America Should Embrace Sharia Law…

There's your 'Liberal Media'. If you have the stomach, read through the infantile comments from the fine patriots at Fox Nation.

I'm all for public participation in politics....

But not all citizens are equipped to provide meaningful input.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Watching Gran Torino with a good SMS.....

And two quotes seem unbelievably appropriate for my life:
Ever notices how you come across somebody once in a while that you shouldn't have fucked with?......That's me.
You're wrong, eggroll, I know exactly what I'm talking about. I may not be the most pleasant person to be around, but I got the best woman who was ever on this planet to marry me. I worked at it. It was the best thing ever happened to me, hands down.

Alba gu bràth

The 2011 Virginia Scottish Games

Saturday, September 3, 2011

The Day has Arrived!

I bought a 52" Sharp Quattron HDTV in March......with nothing but visions of watching my Ducks come September. Beer is cold, wings are hot.....all is well in the world.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Return of the Quack!

11:00 minutes long......but if you're a Quacker're going to watch every second of it!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

I am the Infantry

We are the boys who go to a particular place, at H-hour, occupy a designated terrain, stand on it, dig the enemy out of their holes, force them then and there to surrender or die. We're the bloody infantry, the doughboy, the duckfoot, the foot soldier who goes where the enemy is and takes him on in person. We've been doing it, with changes in weapons but very little change in our trade, at least since the time five thousand years ago when the foot sloggers of Sargon the Great forced the Sumerians to cry "Uncle!" Maybe they'll be able to do without us someday. Maybe some mad genius with myopia, a bulging forehead, and a cybernetic mind will devise a weapon that can go down a hole, pick out the opposition, and force it to surrender or die--without killing that gang of your own people they've got imprisoned down there. I wouldn't know; I'm not a genius, I'm an M.I. In the meantime, until they build a machine to replace us, my mates can handle that job--and I might be some help on it, too.

- Heinlein

Earthquakes, hurricanes.........whats next, a plague of locusts?

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Still in the Fight

Friday, August 26, 2011


Thursday, August 25, 2011

He's man's best friend for some very good reasons....

A gripping photo of slain Navy SEAL Jon Tumilson’s faithful Labrador retriever lying next to the Iowa native’s flag-draped coffin last week in Iowa launched an Internet frenzy and international media coverage.
A gripping photo of slain Navy SEAL Jon Tumilson’s faithful Labrador retriever lying next to the Iowa native’s flag-draped coffin last week in Iowa launched an Internet frenzy and international media coverage.
 Now go hug your dog dammit......

Sunday, August 21, 2011

I'm not sure if what I'm feeling is gastronomical bliss, or my arteries clogging.....

Step aside Iowa and fried butter -- there is a new national fried treasure to feast upon.
The country's first deep-fried cheeseburger is making its debut among at least 30 other varieties of hamburgers served by 15 different vendors at the National Hamburger Festival in Akron, Ohio, this weekend.
"We cook the cheeseburger, put it on a bun and dip it in batter before dropping it in a deep fryer," said Drew Cerza, the festival's founder.
Cerza came up with the idea for a deep-fried burger alongside a chef at a local burger restaurant. He wanted to combine two of his favorite things -- hamburgers and chicken wings. Cerza said the special batter is a cross between funnel-cake batter and pancake batter, making the deep-fried cheeseburger both sweet and savory.
"We'll serve it with a side of Lipitor," Cerza said with a laugh.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

"My Whole Squad is Gone"

After the explosion Thursday, the battalion chaplain couldn’t get here soon enough. A line of Soldiers needing him waited late into the night, and early the next morning. For many, the tears pushed out in waves. For others, solace came in the form of a quiet stoicism.
“I don’t know what to do right now. My whole squad is gone,” Pfc. Jeremy Urzua said. His squad leader, Frank, was among the Soldiers killed in the blast and had given him a rare day off Thursday.
“I didn’t see it at first, but he just saved my life,” said Urzua, who was back at COP when the attack occurred that morning. Since the attack, Soldiers have been remembering the best of those who were killed Thursday.
“They’re what the infantry is all about. They were just willing to do anything for you, for each other,” Urzua said.
The Soldiers of Company C have forged an alliance known only to the infantry Soldier. They share the misery of extreme suffering, the filth and the physical and emotional scars earned together.
Read the rest

h/t Bouhammer 

Thursday, August 18, 2011

The bias of claiming media bias

The questions and commentary on media bias appear to be an enduring part of our political and social climate. But nearly every critique of such is based upon a flawed foundation, the bias of the listener/viewer/reader. This is why proponents of the theory that the American mainstream media is biased are forced to rely on terms such as saturation, intensity and diversion.........all nearly immeasurable standards except by one's inherent bias.

Almost nothing can prove a general conclusion on an issue such as perception of bias. That perception is inherently subjective. We have organizations on the left and the right claiming examples of bias, as well as studies from various academics and analysts. But the bottom line is when one is beholden to a particular political team; they will usually find any reporting not deferential to that team, as biased.

Most claims are that the Mainstream Media is biased towards liberals, using quotes and examples from evening opinion programming, that are also found on evening opinion programming that caters to the right.
There are several reasons that ideological websites and blogs are more popular than ever.....the primary reason being that they report on stories and the context of stories that the MSM decides not to cover. Remember, one cannot deride the MSM as being sensationalist, inept, ratings driven and shallow - and - believe that they maintain a cabal of intrigue and power benefiting one political party, yet oddly not adding any tangible value to that party's chance at gaining or maintaining power.

We have an unfortunate duopolistic political paradigm; one where the media and the two parties aid and abet each other in a dance of hypocritical red meat-wedge issues, while the true challenges facing our continued survival as a superpower remain unanswered. I'll state it plainly...if the MSM were biased towards the left, the sheer volume of sourced, fact laden stories they could report on - which would be detrimental to the staggering.

As there is no conclusive study [though there are admissions to the inception of the meme by the allegedly afflicted party], and no discernible impact on the electoral success or philosophical underpinnings of the afflicted party [liberal is a pejorative, conservative isn't], to buttress a claim on institutional bias. I know alternate points of view are difficult to ingest, but by no means am I infringing on anyone's ability to use whatever intellectual crutch they deem worthy to scapegoat ideological shortcomings of the party or candidates they support.

The American MSM is undeniably following the business model of enabling and abetting the political duopoly. There simply isn't the same financial incentive to cater to a particular party outside of segmented blocs, as we see in evening opinion programming. None of that is to say that I think our media is generally worth a damn, but with the subjectivity and personal bias inherent in each and every one of us...discernibly proving media bias is tougher than mere rhetoric. To use such a claim in political discourse, is most often a prop to atone for lack of substance to a position.

Some people actually wanted this oxygen thief to be a US Senator

Tea Party favorite Christine O'Donnell walked out of an interview with CNN last night after Piers Morgan asked the former Delaware Senate candidate her views about gay marriage.

O'Donnell, who is promoting her new book, called the CNN host "rude" and said she had agreed to come on the show to talk aboutTroublemaker: Let's Do What it Takes to Make America Great Again.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

The Volckmann Program

Throughout the world, al-Qaeda, or AQ, and its affiliates are conducting a multiregion insurgency designed to establish the Caliphate. The United States does not have the capability, measured in either blood or dollars, to lead a fight throughout multiple regions of the world against AQ and its affiliates. If we attempt to conduct the large number of U.S. unilateral operations needed to defeat this AQ assault, we quickly play into AQ's hands, exhausting ourselves and, in the process, negatively affecting long-term, global perceptions of the U.S.

The question then crystallizes — how do we break the current operational paradigm and stop this multiregion insurgency without an overwhelming loss of life, expenditure of funds and loss of international favor because of large, unilateral U.S. actions or unfocused security-assistance efforts? If we attempt to use large-scale security-assistance efforts and funding to build entire host-country militaries and security forces around the world and let them address this AQ problem in their own countries, can we be assured that we are wisely spending U.S. taxpayer dollars funding the most critical host-country units in the fight properly? Are we unintentionally squandering our national treasure on units or organizations that are not key contributors in the fight against AQ? Are we using centralized drive-by assessments of the needs of key host-country units in the fight against AQ? Is there a way to remove what may currently be a myopic view of the requirements of these critical host-country units? Is there a way to synergize the capabilities inherent in Title X and Title XXII authorities?

Read the rest......

Thoughts on a day at work

From a USAF C-17 Pilot:

I had an unforgettable day yesterday and wanted to share it with you. I know we've all sat around and discussed in detail why we do what we do and if we will be willing to continue to do what we do day in and day out regardless of deployments, retirement decisions, job opportunities, missed birthdays, missed holidays, etc. This is something I wanted to share and you were the people that came to mind. It's another reason I continue to serve. I guess because many others do and sacrifice a lot more, some even their lives.  My crew was alerted yesterday to find that our mission had changed. We were now a backup to a high priority mission originating from Afghanistan. When I asked where we would be going the answer was "back to the states". Later I learned our destination was Dover. 

I was the aircraft commander for one of two C-17s that transferred the Chinook helicopter crash soldiers back home. The crew that started this mission in Afghanistan would end up running out of crew duty day and need another crew to continue the soldier's journey. We just happened to be available. After being alerted and going through our normal sequence, I found myself at the foot of the aircraft steps.  Before I took my first step upward I noticed a transfer case close to the door. I had only seen one in pictures. The American Flag was tucked smartly, folded and secured on top. I paused at the bottom of the stairs, took a deep breath and continued up with my mind and eyes focusing on making it to the next ladder leading to the cockpit. However, as I entered, I couldn't help but notice the remaining nineteen transfer cases in the cargo compartment.

The entire cargo compartment was filled with identical transfer cases with American Flags. I made my way up to the cockpit and received a briefing from the previous aircraft commander. After the briefing we exchanged a handshake and the other pilot was on his way. I felt a need to ensure the crew focused on their normal duties. I instructed the other two pilots to began the preflight. I went back down into the cargo compartment to see what needed to be done and find the paperwork I needed to sign. The cargo compartment was now filled with numerous people from the mortuary affairs squadron. They were busy adjusting, resetting and overall preparing the cases for their continued flight. Before they began I asked who was in charge because I knew there was paperwork I needed to sign. I finally found a Staff Sergeant who was working an issue with the paperwork. After it was complete, he brought it up to the cockpit for me to review and sign. 

There are moments in life I will never forget. For me, it's the days my son and daughter were born. Another occurred five months ago when I had to deliver the unthinkable news to a mother that her son was killed in Afghanistan and although I didn't anticipate another day like that this soon, yesterday was another. I looked at the paperwork I was signing and realized the magnitude of the day. I glanced over the paperwork and signed. In a way, I felt I had taken ownership of these fallen soldiers. It was now my duty to ensure they make it home. After confirming the preflight was complete and the aircraft was fueled, I went outside to start my walk-around. As I walked down the steps, a bus had parked in front of the aircraft and unloaded eleven passengers. The passengers were fellow SEAL team members who were escorting the fallen back to the states. I stood at the front of the aircraft and watched them board. Every one of them walked off the bus with focus in their eyes and determination in their steps; just as I imagine they do when they go on a mission. I made eye contact with the lead SEAL, nodded my head in respect and he nodded back. 

Finishing my walk-around, I stopped at the bottom of the stairs. I looked up into the cargo compartment; two American Flags and one SEAL Team Six flag hung from the top of the cargo compartment. Three of twenty transfer cases were visible; one with an American Flag and two with Afghan flags. I looked up at my aircraft and saw, "United States Air Force" painted on the side and I stood trying to take it all in. I wanted to make certain that I never forget these images. That I never forget the faces of the SEALS, the smell of the cargo compartment or the sun slowly rising over the landscape. It's important that I don't forget. We need to honor the dead, honor the sacrifice of the fallen. 

I understand my role in getting these fallen soldiers home is insignificant compared to the lives they lived and the things they did for our country. Most of it we will never know. All I know is every American should see what I've seen. Every American should see the bus loads of families as they exit the freeway headed for Dover AFB to reunite with their fallen or witness the amount of time, effort, people and equipment that go into ensuring our fallen have a honorable return. The very next day we took the same aircraft back overseas. We had leveled the aircraft at our cruise altitude and I walked down to the cargo compartment. No more American Flags hung from the ceiling. All the transfer cases were gone. 

Instead I watched a father lay with his son, cradled on his chest, on the same spot that only yesterday held a fallen soldier. I watched a young girl, clutching a teddy bear, sleeping quietly where the fallen had laid. I realized so many Americans have no idea where the fallen lay. 

I'm honored to be one that does.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

For the shooters out there

h/t Lightfighter

Bud Light Presents... Real Men of Genius.

(~*Reeeal Mennn of Geniuuussss*~)

Today we salute you, Mr. Unappreciated and Uncredited Spotter Guy.

(~*Mr. Unappreciated and Uncredited Spotter Guy!*~)

Any 12 year old can put the crosshairs on the target. But YOU put the math on the crosshairs, and tell your buddy how to make the clicky adjustments of doom.

(~*Which cargo pocket did I put my TI-89 in?*~)

You do trigonometry in your sleep, calculate windage and distance just by feeling the wind on your eyeball, and routinely make the Coriolis Effect your bitch!

(~*Wicked windy, super far, a buncha mils, send it!"*~)

And do you get mentioned in a single article about the extreme-distance shots, or how hard it is to do ballistics math on a battlefield? Of course not.

(~*They all think "there's an Aaaaapp for that"!*~)

So crack open an ice cold Bud Light, oh Sheldon Cooper of the infantry. Because why get all the girls, glory, and news attention, when you can carry the 1 for your buddy...

(~*Mr. Unappreciated and Uncredited Spottttter Guyyyyy!*~)

Monday, August 8, 2011

Interesting to note who's "palling around with terrorists" now

The ornate ballroom of the Willard Hotel buzzed with activity on a Saturday morning in July. Crowded together on the stage sat a cadre of the nation's most influential former government officials, the kind whose names often appear in boldface, who've risen above daily politics to the realm of elder statesmen. They were perched, as they so often are, below a banner with a benign conference title on it, about to offer words of pricey wisdom to an audience with an agenda.
That agenda: to secure the removal of the Mujahideen-e Khalq (MEK) from the U.S. government's list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations. A Marxian Iranian exile group with cult-like qualities, Mujahideen-e Khalq was responsible for the killing of six Americans in Iran in the 1970s, along with staging a handful of bombings. But for a terrorist organization with deep pockets, it appears there's always hope.
Onstage next to former FBI director Louis Freeh sat Ed Rendell, the former Democratic governor of Pennsylvania and current MSNBC talking head; former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean; former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Hugh Shelton; former Secretary of Veterans Affairs Togo West; former State Department Director of Policy Planning Mitchell Reiss; former Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. James T. Conway; Anita McBride, the former chief of staff to First Lady Laura Bush; and Sarah Sewall, a Harvard professor who sits on a corporate board with Reiss.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Of Sheep and Sheepdogs

h/t Blackfive

Military Adaptibility

h/t This Ain't Hell

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Tell me again the difference between the Democratic and Republican parties

The first ever GAO(Government Accountability Office) audit of the Federal Reserve was carried out in the past few months due to the Ron Paul, Alan Grayson Amendment to the Dodd-Frank bill, which passed last year. Jim DeMint, a Republican Senator, and Bernie Sanders, an independent Senator, led the charge for a Federal Reserve audit in the Senate, but watered down the original language of the house bill(HR1207), so that a complete audit would not be carried out. Ben Bernanke(pictured to the left), Alan Greenspan, and various other bankers vehemently opposed the audit and lied to Congress about the effects an audit would have on markets. Nevertheless, the results of the first audit in the Federal Reserve’s nearly 100 year history were posted on Senator Sander’s webpage earlier this morning:
What was revealed in the audit was startling: $16,000,000,000,000.00 had been secretly given out to US banks and corporations and foreign banks everywhere from France to Scotland. From the period between December 2007 and June 2010, the Federal Reserve had secretly bailed out many of the world’s banks, corporations, and governments. The Federal Reserve likes to refer to these secret bailouts as an all-inclusive loan program, but virtually none of the money has been returned and it was loaned out at 0% interest. Why the Federal Reserve had never been public about this or even informed the United States Congress about the $16 trillion dollar bailout is obvious — the American public would have been outraged to find out that the Federal Reserve bailed out foreign banks while Americans were struggling to find jobs.
To place $16 trillion into perspective, remember that GDP of the United States is only $14.12 trillion. The entire national debt of the United States government spanning its 200+ year history is “only” $14.5 trillion. The budget that is being debated so heavily in Congress and the Senate is “only” $3.5 trillion. Take all of the outrage and debate over the $1.5 trillion deficit into consideration, and swallow this Red pill: There was no debate about whether $16,000,000,000,000 would be given to failing banks and failing corporations around the world.
The list of institutions that received the most money from the Federal Reserve can be found on page 131 of the GAO Audit and are as follows.
Citigroup: $2.5 trillion ($2,500,000,000,000)
Morgan Stanley: $2.04 trillion ($2,040,000,000,000)
Merrill Lynch: $1.949 trillion ($1,949,000,000,000)
Bank of America: $1.344 trillion ($1,344,000,000,000)
Barclays PLC (United Kingdom): $868 billion ($868,000,000,000)
Bear Sterns: $853 billion ($853,000,000,000)
Goldman Sachs: $814 billion ($814,000,000,000)
Royal Bank of Scotland (UK): $541 billion ($541,000,000,000)
JP Morgan Chase: $391 billion ($391,000,000,000)
Deutsche Bank (Germany): $354 billion ($354,000,000,000)
UBS (Switzerland): $287 billion ($287,000,000,000)
Credit Suisse (Switzerland): $262 billion ($262,000,000,000)
Lehman Brothers: $183 billion ($183,000,000,000)
Bank of Scotland (United Kingdom): $181 billion ($181,000,000,000)
BNP Paribas (France): $175 billion ($175,000,000,000)
and many many more including banks in Belgium of all placesView the 266-page GAO audit of the Federal Reserve(July 21st, 2011):

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Where's the feigned outrage this time??

Forgive me for asking the question. You see, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu just agreed to negotiate with the Palestinians using the 1967 borders as a framework.
Several months ago, President Barack Obama declared that the negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians should take place along the lines of the 1967 borders with “agreed upon land swaps.” Netanyahu responded with fury, calling the 1967 borders “indefensible,” even though by definition “land swaps” meant not returning to the exact 1967 borders. Republicans and Democrats piled on, accusing Obama of abandoning Israel.
The idea of using the 1967 lines with swaps as a framework for negotiations was nothing new, of course, but that didn’t stop opportunists from distorting the president’s position, and Republicans from launching another round of “the Jews are abandoning Obama” stories and accusing the president of being too sympathetic to the Palestinians. Some even claimed that it’s hard to distinguish the administration’s stance from that of the Palestinians. Well now it’s Netanyahu’s position too. Perhaps he’s also a dreaded Palestinian sympathizer?

Friday, July 29, 2011

What, too easy?

Quote of the Day

"In my many years I have come to a conclusion that one useless man is a shame, two is a law firm, and three or more is a congress."

— John Adams

Monday, July 25, 2011

You can't make up this kind of crazy......

The homosexual agenda and religious liberty cannot co-exist. America will have to choose between the two, because we cannot have both. Every advance of the homosexual agenda comes at the expense of religious liberty. Every time - every single time - the homosexual agenda advances, religious liberty is forced into retreat. 
The day has already arrived when it has become a criminal offense for a Christian to act on his convictions. The day is coming when it will be a criminal offense to have Christian convictions at all. 

One can almost feel sorry for the ignorance of the poor bigots.......

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

A Motto to Live By

Seo sláinte an tséitéara, an ghadaí, an trodaí, agus an óltóra!
Má dhéanann tu séitéireacht, go ndéana tú séitéireacht ar an mbás,
Má ghoideann tú, go ngoide tú croí mná;
Má throideann tú, go dtroide tú i leith do bhráthar, 
Agus má ólann tú, go n-óla tú liom féin.

If you cheat, may you cheat death.
If you steal, may you steal a woman's heart.
If you fight, may you fight for a brother.
And if you drink, may you drink with me.

- Gaelic Drinking Toast