Saturday, May 31, 2014

A First: Obama Not Denying VA Problems

There is a new scandal in the Obama presidency that for once he is not denying. He's not accepting responsibility but at least he hasn't called it a "phony scandal." I'm speaking, of course, about the phony waiting lists at numerous VA hospitals.

What's not different in this incident is his overall response - blame Bush and promise to do something about it.

“This predates my presidency. When I was in the Senate, I was on the Veterans Affairs Committee. I heard first-hand veterans who were not getting the kinds of services and benefits that they had earned,” the President said to the White House Press Corps.

Soon after he was elected the President and Vice President Biden supposedly put together a plan to fix the VA. In a document recently discovered by World Net Daily, and labeled the Obama-Biden Plan from the Office of the President Elect, Obama makes a series of promises to veterans, including:

* Fix the Benefits Bureaucracy: Hire additional claims workers, and improve training and accountability so that VA benefit decisions are rated fairly and consistently. Transform the paper benefit claims process to an electronic one to reduce errors and improve timeliness.

* Strengthen VA Care: Make the VA a leader of national health care reform so that veterans get the best care possible. Improve care for polytrauma vision impairment, prosthetics, spinal cord injury, aging, and women’s health.

* Fully Fund VA Medical Care: Fully fund the VA so it has all the resources it needs to serve the veterans who need it, when they need it. Establish a world-class VA Planning Division to avoid future budget shortfalls.

It's not like the President didn't know what was going on. In a 2007 speech he said “Keeping faith with those who serve must always be a core American value and a cornerstone of American patriotism. Because America’s commitment to its servicemen and women begins at enlistment, and it must never end.”

In a letter dated May 21, 2013, House Veterans Affairs Committee Chairman Jeff Miller, R-Fla., warned the President: “an alarming pattern of serious and significant patient care issues at the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Centers (VAMCs) across the country … (including) failures, deceptions, and lack of accountability permeating VA’s healthcare system … I believe your direct involvement and leadership is required.”

The simple fact that he said this situation predates his presidency proves he knew. But he did nothing in the five years since his election.

The fact is President Obama is great at promising things. He promised to "get to the bottom" of the Benghazi murders. He promised to get to the bottom of the IRS targeting scandal. He promised to get to the bottom of the Justice Department spying on the Associated Press and FOX Reporter James Rosen. He promised to get to the bottom of the Fast and Furious scandal. But that's all he does - promise. Then he waits what he feels is an appropriate time and pretends like they never happened. Then he calls them "phony scandals."

I'll be curious to see where this one goes. He hasn't called it a phony scandal yet so he apparently is taking it seriously. But what is he going to do? Since the phony waiting lists are in over 60 VA hospitals it seems certain that it's a conspiracy but VA administrators, created to boost their year-end performance bonuses. If that's true, and it certainly seems to be, then in my humble opinion the actions of those administrators are criminal and they should not only be fired but prosecuted.

Rather than blame others I hope President Obama will utter those words made infamous by another Democrat a few years back - "The buck stops here." Those words were uttered by Attorney General Janet Reno after the Waco incident. General Shinseki sort of said it when he resigned but Obama will never take blame for anything. 

I'm sure it came as a big surprise to all of you, as it did to me, when the White House announced that President Obama found out about the VA problems on the news. Even though he knew about the long waiting lists and other problems in 2007, and promised to fix them in 2008 (and in various speeches since then), he found out about it on the news. He finds out about everything on the news. Obviously he watches FOX since they're the only ones who report anything negative about the Obama administration.

When it comes to politicians making un-kept promises I think President Obama should get a "Best In Class" award. The only promise he has kept during his presidency is the one about changing America. He's definitely doing that - and not in a good way. President Obama should resign. I may be mistaken but I think I'd rather have Biden as President than another two and a half years of Obama. I'm not sure America will survive another two and a half years of treachery...

Road Trip....

Some of you may have been wondering where I've been for the last couple of weeks. Arden and I took a road trip to California to visit friends and family and to do some sightseeing. We were gone 11 days - got home yesterday evening around 6:30pm. What a great time.

We left here on Tuesday, the 20th in the afternoon. Got a later start than we intended but had to board the dogs and take care of some things and the time just disappeared. We drove until about 11pm and stopped in a rest area in West Texas to sleep for a few hours. When we woke up we drove through the beautiful (a little humor) city of El Paso, Texas, and into Las Cruces, New Mexico, for breakfast. After Starbucks we headed across the desert.

About halfway across Southern New Mexico is a small ghost town that was called "Steins." I think it used to be a tourist attraction but now it's fenced in and mostly abandoned. Someone still lives there (there was one house and a guy working on his pickup) but there were no tours or signs or anything.I took a couple of pictures. The first one is the old Mercantile store. The second speaks for itself...

We drove into Arizona a short time later, headed for Scottsdale, where we had two free nights at the Scottsdale Villa Mirage resort. We got those when we were in Las Vegas last year and decided to use them on this trip just to break up the drive. 

We stopped at a couple of rest areas in Arizona. The first had this garden of yucca plants in front of the restroom building....

The second, about 40 miles East of Tucson, is built in the middle of this really amazing rock display (for lack of something better to call it.) They are on both sides of the road but only for a distance of about half a mile.

We also began seeing cacti of various varieties - something we both like. And driving into Tucson we began seeing the infamous Saguaros....

That night we were really tired after only a few hours of sleep in the rest area. We had eaten on the road so we just enjoyed our studio apartment room and went to bed early. The next morning we got up and went for a walk around the area then returned to the room for some of our favorite coffee. (We take our coffee pot on the road with us because we have yet to find any coffee in a restaurant, coffee shop or hotel that compares to Bustelo.)

We went to breakfast in a place called "First Watch" just down the street from the hotel. Arden got oatmeal dressed up with pecans, apples, brown sugar and bananas. The waitress said it came with milk and Arden told her since I always order milk she would give hers to me. (She's just that kind of wife.) So I didn't order a glass of milk with my breakfast. 

The waitress brought our food and Arden's milk. It didn't take me long to figure out I might want a little more...

After breakfast we did a little shopping and some sightseeing. Scottsdale is actually a very nice town. Not too crowded and mostly modern. We went into the historic district and while there wasn't much there that interested us (mostly shopping, restaurants and art museums) we did find a place to stop and have a beer on a patio with fans that blew a mist throughout to keep it cool. (It was about 100 degrees.)

We saw a couple of interesting businesses in the local area. The first was called the "Morning Squeeze". All this time I thought it was something else...

While walking back to the car we saw this place. We decided we didn't really want to know what they sold....

We went back to the hotel for a while then went to a wonderful Italian restaurant for dinner. It was a large, two-story place with dark wood and white linen tablecloths. The staff wore black pants and white shirts. It was far more elegant than our attire but they welcomed us anyway. And after I saw several other people dressed even less formally than we were it didn't matter. The food was excellent and our waiter was top notch. 

We got a good night's sleep, full of great Italian food, and got up and walked in the morning before getting on the road again. In the area around our resort were several other resorts and all were perfectly landscaped with cacti, yuccas, jacaranda trees and all kinds of flowering plants. It was beautiful and walking before it got too hot was great.

We headed West later that morning, again, later than we wanted to leave. We were headed for Lompoc on the Central Coast - supposedly an 8 hour drive. We stopped in Palm Springs just to see it and were rather disappointed. The exit for Palm Springs, the "jewel of the desert" was unbelievable. This is it. (Be sure to open it up so you an really see it in all its glory...

The city itself was no more remarkable than any other. Shops and restaurants but no different than anyplace else I've been. I know there are resorts that are pretty spectacular but you have to know where they are. (In contrast, we went through Beverly Hills on Monday and everything there is luxurious.)

We ended up going straight through Los Angeles on I-10 so I could take Arden up the Pacific Coast Highway - a beautiful albeit slower drive. We got to L.A. right at rush hour on a Friday so we made really bad time once we hit San Bernardino. It took about an hour and a half to get to the coast from there. And traffic on the PCH was heavy as well. But it was as beautiful as I remember.

We went up through Santa Barbara and on up highway 101 to the Lompoc exit.

As I braked to a stop we heard an awful grinding noise in the left rear wheel. I knew the brakes weren't bad - I had them checked before we left. But the noise was real. And since there is nothing for miles in any direction at that particular exit I had no choice but to drive on into Lompoc, about 18 miles away. The noise was only audible when we stopped and started - nothing while we were moving over about 10 mph. But it needed to be checked.

We drove into Lompoc without a problem and stopped at Walgreen's. Arden needed a couple of things and I took a moment to remove the left rear wheel and see what I could see. The hub was extremely hot and I couldn't get it off. So I put the wheel back on and asked a clerk in Walgreen's if he knew a good mechanic. He suggested one just down the street. We stayed in a hotel near the mechanic so I could go there first thing in the morning. We bought Chinese food and went to the room, happy to be there but concerned about what was wrong with the van.

To be continued....

Monday, May 26, 2014

Happy Memorial Day... And Thank You

Today is Memorial Day. Originally known as Decoration Day, the holiday was created after the Civil War to memorialize both Union and Confederate soldiers who died during that war. Though it was done unofficially before the Civil War, the practice of decorating the graves of soldiers began before the war. It became a common practice during and after.

By the 20th century, it had been changed to Memorial Day and had been extended to honor all Americans who have died while in the military service.

Many people in this country get Memorial Day confused with Veterans' Day. And while they both honor veterans, Veterans' Day honors all veterans and Memorial Day is specifically for those who made that ultimate sacrifice in service to their country. 

Sadly, many Americans see Memorial Day simply as a day of barbecues, burgers, and fun rather than thinking about the true meaning of the holiday. Without those fallen soldiers and the ones who take their place, America never would have become the nation she is today. We are able to celebrate and enjoy the day thanks to all of our veterans but specifically, thanks to those who were willing to sacrifice their own lives for us.

It has been said that "A veteran is someone who, at some point in his/her life, writes a blank check to "The people of the United States of America" in the amount of "Up to and including my life." Never is that saying more true than on Memorial Day, set aside to honor those who made that sacrifice. 

Don't get me wrong - I have the utmost respect for all men and women who serve in our military. They deserve no less. But not everyone who serves actually goes into harm's way (I didn't) and those who do deserve special recognition and respect. And those who didn't return deserve honor.

In 1991 my family and I were in Leavenworth, Kansas. The Saturday before Memorial Day, along with other volunteers, we went to the National Cemetery on Fort Leavenworth and placed flags before the gravestones. It gave a whole new meaning to my perspective on Memorial Day. If you ever have the chance to do that I would recommend it. It's humbling.

So to all my fellow veterans out there who read my words - thank you for your service. To those who made that ultimate sacrifice - there are no words I can say to explain my thanks to you. You did something I never did in military service - put yourself in harm's way for your fellow Americans. You died for me, my family and friends, and for all citizens of the United States. And I want to recognize you for it.

Thank you for your sacrifice and dedication. I won't be celebrating today. I will be solemnly grateful.

"We Will hold People Accountable..." The Continued (Broken) Promise Of President Obama

President Obama spoke out the other day on the problems with the Veterans' Administration and the 'secret waiting lists' that appear to have allowed veterans to die while waiting on care while Obama's required success numbers that were impossible to meet.

"Anybody found to have manipulated or falsified records at VA facilities has to be held accountable," Obama said.

This is not the first time President Obama has made that 'promise' to the American people. Unfortunately, he has failed to make good on the similar promises he has made.

Obama promised to "get to the bottom" of what happened in Benghazi - then e-mails proved that he lied about what really happened.

He promised to 'get to the bottom' of the IRS scandal in which e-mails now prove that Senators Chuck Schumer and Carl Levin, and Congressman Elijah Cummings may have been directly involved with the IRS in their suppression of conservative political action groups. Of course, even the before the "internal investigation" by a known Obama supporter was complete - the President said there is "not a smidgen of corruption" in the IRS. And we can certainly believe that.

Obama said the targeting of reporters of FOX and the Associated Press was wrong and vowed to "get to the bottom of it." As of this date - nothing has happened to those who participated in it. In fact - it's most likely still going on.

The problem here is that Obama makes big promises but fails to deliver on them. He said (more than once) he would "find those responsible" for the above atrocities but he has no real answers for anything. Instead he makes up excuses of why he can't keep promises or denies he made those promises. So when is the leader going to emerge?

President Obama makes promises all the time that he fails to fulfill. And people continue to praise him for it. They see his failures but fail to recognize them. Or they justify them by saying "Other Presidents have done the same thing." Is that really an excuse? Is it OK to allow a President to fail in so many things by simply saying other Presidents have failed as well? Is failure simply OK with them?

It seems to be. And there's nothing I can do about it at the present time - except document and share my thoughts. And that's something I enjoy.

Happy Memorial Day to all and a special thank you to those who made the ultimate sacrifice for me, you and all of your fellow citizens.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Pay No Attention To The Man Behind The Curtain...

It wasn't all that long ago that President Obama ran a successful election campaign against John McCain to become President of the United States. One of the things he promised was that he would do away with lobbyists in the White House. Ever true to his word - he kept that promise throughout the campaign. Once he was in office it didn't take long before he was granting "waivers" to certain lobbyists. Funny how that works.

Fast forward to 2008 when Obama ran against Mitt Romney to retain his place in the White House. One of the things he slammed Mitt Romney on was his past association with the evil Bain Capital. Obama intimated that Mitt Romney was evil incarnate because he worked as CEO of Bain Capital (making them very successful, by the way) who, as a corporation, destroyed jobs and lives. 

Fast forward again to this past Saturday, May 17th. President Obama played golf at the exclusive Robert Trent Jones Golf Club in Gainesville, VA. One of the members of the foursome was Joe O’Neill, president and CEO of the lobbying and public affairs firm Public Strategies Washington. Among other companies, O'Neill lobbies for tax reform for none other than Bain Capital. Imagine.

The White House's supposed ban on lobbyists allegely a "major tool in fighting corruption and influence peddling." Yet there is no real ban. Last year, lobbying scholar Conor McGrath wrote in the Journal of Public Affairs that there are at least 119 lobbyists working in the Obama White House. "President Obama's public rhetoric on contact with lobbyists does not always accord with his private actions," says McGrath. Now there's an understatement.

"I think he played a game of golf," said White House spokesman Jay Carney when asked about it. Carney has such a knack of ignoring the obvious and pretending it didn't happen. The President has a motto that he wants the American people to follow: "Pay no attention to what I do. Simply listen and believe what I tell you."

Sadly, there are far too many Americans who do just that.

Monday, May 19, 2014

President Obama Disrespected More Than Other Presidents?

I read a post on Facebook this morning that said:

"Why we vehemently defend President Obama. He is subjected to a level of disrespect, treachery, betrayal and sabotage from within that no other President has ever experienced. Still, he succeeds and his success makes American lives better."

I decided to use this as the basis of my post today. I'm going to make the argument about why the statement is entirely wrong, from beginning to end.

In typical liberal fashion, President Obama has been the "victim" since he was elected. Even though he got a large majority of the votes, he and others played the race card over and over against anyone who criticized him. Certainly, as I've said before, there are people in this country so blinded by racial hatred that they oppose his Presidency simply because of his skin color. But they are in a small minority. Most Americans don't care what color a politician's skin is - that was evidenced by the number of votes the President received.

In January of 2009, Mitch McConnell said his number 1 priority was to make Obama a 1-term President. Rush Limbaugh's now infamous statement "I hope he (President Obama) fails." Of course the left and the main stream (in the pocket of Obama) media decided that was racist. They ignored Obama's far left ideology. They ignored his statement that he wanted to "fundamentally change America" and his belief that "when you spread the wealth around, it's good for everybody." McConnell and Limbaugh were referring to Obama's socialistic/Marxist type plans and ideologies when they made their statements but that's not what was portrayed by the Obama fans.

So the Republicans have been fighting Obama from day one - at least some of them. McConnell doesn't exactly stand strong on his statement. Obama, the Democrats and the media began calling the Republicans the "party of 'no'" when they opposed the fundamental changes Obama wanted to make. They opposed the "Affordable" Care Act (and rightly so) - a disastrous law that is destroying jobs, is causing millions of Americans to lose their health care coverage and their doctors, and is causing insurance premiums and deductibles to skyrocket. The bill was pushed down the throats of the American people (72% of Americans opposed it) and was passed with bribery and treachery on the part of the Democrats.

Want to talk about treachery? How about the fact that this President gave himself the authority to arrest and indefinitely detain anyone in the country at any time without due process? How about the fact that this President gave himself the authority to kill American citizens abroad for acts that he deems to be terrorism, again without due process? Is it disrespectful to oppose those things?

Want to talk about disrespect? George W. Bush was vilified, ridiculed, and hated by the left. How many movies are there about killing Obama? I've seen a few effigies dedicated to Obama but not nearly as many as there were signs and posters of Bush being killed are calling for his death. Obama disrespected? Please.

Finally - I'd like to know which Americans have better lives because of Obama. Someone please enlighten me. Unemployment is still at an all-time high. Even though the President and the media like to say unemployment is down, the number of people in the workforce has dropped to 62.8%, down 5% since 2008. So while there are a few more people working than there were last year - there are fewer people looking for work and more people on welfare and food stamps. That's not unwarranted criticism of the President. It's just fact.

A National Urban League report says that blacks in America are losing economic ground in today's society. As reported by the Huffington Post:

The annual report, called "One Nation Underemployed: Jobs Rebuild America," noted that the underemployment rate for African-American workers was 20.5 percent, compared with 18.4 percent for Hispanic workers and 11.8 percent for white workers. Underemployment is defined as those who are jobless or working part-time jobs but desiring full-time work.

The report also said African-Americans are twice as likely as whites to be unemployed. The unemployment rate for blacks was 12 percent in February, compared with 5.8 percent for whites.

But Obama is supposed to be the great uniter who was going to make life better for African-Americans. He has yet to do that. Murder rates, abortion rates and single motherhood rates among black Americans continue to climb. So how has Obama made anyone's life better?

Let's not forget how he is dissecting and weakening our military. We're now disrespected by more nations on Earth than we've been since Jimmy Carter was President. Russia and China laugh at us, as does Iran. If Obama allows Iran to obtain nuclear weapons (as it appears he is) he should be tried for treason. Look at all of the generals he recently relieved of duty - supposedly because they wouldn't vow to lead American forces against the American people. And every government agency from the Department of Agriculture to NOAA is buying automatic weapons and ammunition in unbelievable amounts.

I'm sure I'll be called a racist by some for pointing out facts. So be it. I won't praise President Obama or hold back my criticism because he's black. He made history as the first black President. That's all well and good. Now he's making history by slowly destroying the United States of America. His "fundamental changes" are killing the nation we love.

Again I ask - how has he made anyone's life any better? He is succeeding, alright - succeeding in destroying America. Hopefully in November enough patriots will come out and say "ENOUGH!" Our only hope is to keep the House and take the Senate so we can stop this tyrant and take our country back. Otherwise, America as we knew it will soon be gone.

Saturday, May 17, 2014

I Don't Blame Obama Anymore

You all know I've spent almost four years now pointing out the shortcomings of the President and the Democrats in general. I have put the blame on Obama and the Democrats for the continued deterioration of the economy, the deterioration of morals and adherence to the laws of the land , the growing national debt, the shrinkage of the value of the dollar, the ever rising unemployment numbers (don't kid yourself that unemployment is going down - the workforce is shrinking), the failure in Iraq and our diminished status in the world.

The Obama administration has lied to the American people time after time, from Obamacare ("You can keep your doctor") to Benghazi ("It was a spontaneous event caused by a video"). They have refused to cooperate with Congressional committees searching for the truth by refusing to hand over requested documents that would reveal their true roles in the various scandals.

Just days ago we learned that the Department of Homeland Security released over 36,000 "convicted" illegal aliens, who were waiting for deportation, to the streets. These 36,000 included murderers, rapists, burglars, drug addicts, etc. And most of them were discretionary releases - not mandatory. 

Obama and Eric Holder have initiated a plan to prevent Border Patrol agents from doing their jobs. It is so bad the Border Patrol union has sued the Obama administration over it. That's how lawless Obama and his ilk have become.

I used to blame Obama. But the time has come to put the blame where it truly belongs - on the spineless Republicans. They refuse to take any real action and refuse to impeach Obama because he's "the first African-American President" and they don't want to be called racists by the Democrats and the main stream media.

Impeachment of a President is an expressed power of the legislature that allows for formal charges against a civil officer of government, including the President, for crimes committed in office. In his oath of office the President said “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.” Article 2, Sec. 3 of the Constitution charges the President “shall take care that the Laws be faithfully executed.” It doesn’t say that he “should” execute the laws of the United States; it uses the imperative “shall.”

Since taking that oath he has circumvented the Constitution on numerous occasions, even telling the American people he was going to do it. " of the things that I’ll be emphasizing in this meeting is the fact that we are not just going to be waiting for legislation in order to make sure that we’re providing Americans the kind of help that they need. I’ve got a pen and I’ve got a phone,” the President said during a cabinet meeting. In other words - if Congress doesn't do what he wants he'll do it himself, even without the authority to do so.

The President picks and chooses the laws he will enforce - also contrary to his sworn duties as President. From immigration to the health care law, the President has unilaterally decided which parts of both he will and won't enforce. He also made some unchallenged appointments the National Labor Relations Board by declaring that the Senate was in recess, which it was not. The 4th Circuit Court of Appeals joined the federal appeals courts in D.C. and Philadelphia in ruling that these appointments were unconstitutional yet the President has done nothing to reverse those appointments.

In June of last year the Supreme Court ruled in Shelby County v. Eric Holder that Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act is “unconstitutional” and that “the formula can no longer be used as a basis for subjecting jurisdiction to pre-clearance.” Instead of complying with the Supreme Court ruling the President allowed Eric Holder to file suit against the State of Texas to order the stated to submit to pre-clearance, in defiance of Congress’ authority to legislate and the Supreme Court’s authority to rule on the constitutionality of the law.

The President is in clear violation of several federal laws yet Republicans refuse to impeach him. So from now on when Obama commits another lawless act I'm not going to blame him. I'm putting the blame on the people who could but won't do something about it. The impeachment process is set up precisely to prevent lawless behavior by elected officials. If the Republicans refuse to use their legal authority to stop Obama from doing whatever he wants whenever he wants it's their own fault. And it's about time to put the blame where it now belongs.

Friday, May 16, 2014

If Islam Is So Wonderful...

...why do they have to have laws making other religious beliefs illegal? I wonder how the Council on American Islam Relations will explain this one away?

In case you haven't yet heard - a woman in Sudan who married a Christian American man has been convicted of apostasy - the abandonment or renunciation of a religious or political belief. She has been sentenced to death by hanging.

Meriam Ibrahim, a physician who is six months pregnant with their second child, was raised by a Christian mother after her Muslim father abandoned them. She married Daniel Wani, a Christian from South Sudan, in a formal church ceremony in 2011. Together they have an 18-month-old son, Martin. 

The case became known to authorities when members of her father's family complained Ibrahim was born Muslim and had renounced her faith. They said her birth name had been Adfal and that she had changed it to Meriam. Ibrahim's lawyer says the documents presented by the family "proving" her name was Adfal are fake.

Ibrahim was initially charged with adultery because the government did not recognize her marriage to a non-Muslim. While she was waiting for a trial on that charge she was charged with apostasy. Her 18 month son is in jail with her because Sudanese law does not allow a non-Muslim parent to have custody of their own children.

Ibrahim told the court that she did not renounce Islam. "I was never a Muslim. I was raised Christian from the start," she said.

The judge gave her time to renounce Christianity and return to Islam. It didn't happen.

At sentencing she heard her fate. "We gave you three days to recant but you insist on not returning to Islam," Judge Abbas Khalifa told Ibrahim. "I sentence you to be hanged to death."

Ibrahim's execution will be delayed so she can give birth to and nurse her unborn baby. Once the baby is born, however, she will receive 100 lashes as part of her punishment. When her baby is weaned she will be hanged. How generous is that?

“The judge has exceeded his mandate when he ruled that Meriam’s marriage was void because her husband was out of her faith,” her attorney, Al-Shareef Ali al-Shareef Mohammed, told The Associated Press. “He was thinking more of Islamic Shariah laws than of the country’s laws and its constitution.”

Representative Chris Smith (R-NJ), who is chairman of the House committee that oversees U.S. policy in Africa, called on the international community to take action in the case. “The refusal of the government of Sudan to allow religious freedom was one of the reasons for Sudan’s long civil war. The U.S. and the rest of the international community must demand Sudan reverse this sentence immediately.”

When a "religion of peace" executes people who don't follow their faith there is something incredibly wrong. And before anyone chimes in about the Holy Crusades let me remind them that the crusades basically ended in 1291 AD. Let's come back to the modern world.

Islam is not really a religion but more of a political ideology disguised as a religion. That's why they can kill infidels in the name of Allah without a second thought and legally execute people who disavow or refuse to be a part of it. In the modern world, to my knowledge, Islam is the only "religion" that advocates and aggressively enacts killing of non-believers. Christianity certainly doesn't. Of course there are those nut jobs like Eric Rudolph who claim to be doing God's work when they kill abortionists, etc., but those beliefs are not taught by the Christian faith or the Bible, which is the Christian faith.

This case is a perfect example of how Islam contradicts its own statements when it comes to being a "religion of peace." There is nothing peaceful about killing others - regardless of the reason or justification. It's still violent behavior. Let's toss political correctness aside and call it what it is.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Obama Administration Defies Immigration Laws And Endangers Public

Documents recently obtained from the Immigration and Customs Enforcement branch of the Department of Homeland Security revealed that the Obama administration last year released 36,017 convicted illegal aliens into communities unknown. 

What's the problem, you might ask. Being convicted of crossing the border illegally isn't that big of a deal. It's not a violent crime. But see - that's the problem. These people weren't simply convicted of crossing the border illegally - a crime that demands jail time by law. No, these people were convicted of numerous crimes including 193 homicide convictions. (That's murder for you people in Rio Linda, as Rush would say.)

426 of them were convicted of sexual assault of various types. 1,075 were convicted of aggravated assault. Over 9000 had dangerous drug convictions and more than 16,000 were convicted of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol - most likely without a valid driver's license.

It seems President Obama not only isn't interested in enforcing immigration laws in this country, as is his sworn duty according to his oath, but he is now violating the laws himself and ignoring the Constitution and his sworn duties.

"Cops should be going after major criminals, not the many illegal immigrants that are quietly living in their districts," said President Obama the other day, a man who has twice sworn to uphold the laws of our great country.

“You’ve got to spend time dealing with somebody who is not causing any other trouble other than the fact that they were trying to make a living for their families. That’s just not a good use of our resources. It’s not smart. It doesn’t make sense.”

I suppose not going after non-violent illegals makes sense to someone who releases illegals convicted of violent crimes. What's the point of going after the non-dangerous little guys when you're not going to enforce the convictions of the illegals for murder and rape?

What's not smart, in my humble opinion, is allowing President Obama to stay in office unchallenged when he picks and chooses how he's going to comply with his oath of office. President Obama continues to get a pass for everything he does, regardless of how negative it may be. 

I heard an interview of a black Congressman the other evening (I cannot remember who it was) and he was asked about black unemployment being so high under Obama. He stated simply that "unemployment is down under President Obama," completely ignoring the truth of what he was asked.

The House of Representatives refused to recognize anything the President has done as an impeachable offense. There is only one valid reason - they are afraid to be labeled racists if they attempt to impeach the first African-American President, regardless of what he does. And that's the sad truth about our nation today. 

Any Caucasian American who criticizes President Obama for any reason is automatically labeled as a racist by the left and the suck-up, main stream media. Any African-American who criticizes President Obama is labeled as an Uncle Tom and a traitor to his race. And it doesn't matter what your oppositions to Obama consist of - that's irrelevant in today's world of progressive liberalism. If you oppose him it's because he's black and you're not (or you're not black enough.)

Liberal progressivism has turned the left into a bunch of intolerant, hateful hypocrites. Certainly not all liberals/Democrats fall into this category but more and more take that plunge every day. These far left zealots, the ones who label anyone who disagrees with them, don't even realize they're doing exactly that of which they're accusing others. Or they pretend it's not the same.

People on the right don't label those who disagree with them as being hateful, bigots, racists, etc. They simply contribute it to the person being a liberal progressive. (OK - sometimes there are a few who are just plain nuts and that needs to be pointed out.) Liberal progressives can't simply agree to disagree. You either agree with them or you fall into one or more of the above categories. Period.

Of course, if Hillary runs for President in 2016, on the day she announces her candidacy, all the people who oppose her liberal agenda will magically transform from racists and Uncle Toms to sexists. That's how the left rolls....

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Military Atheists To Ask For Chaplain

The Military Association of Atheists and Free Thinkers are preparing a request to have their president appointed as an atheist chaplain to the military.

Wait... huh? They want an atheist chaplain? Some are calling the request an oxymoron. I wonder if they researched the word "chaplain" before considering the request.

Merriam-Webster defines chaplain, religion and atheism in the following manners:

Chaplain: a priest or other Christian religious leader who performs religious services for a military group (such as the army) or for a prison, hospital, etc.

Religion: the belief in a god or in a group of gods. : an organized system of beliefs, ceremonies, and rules used to worship a god or a group of gods.

Atheism: a disbelief in the existence of deity or God. b : the doctrine that there is no deity or God.

MAAFT is saying military chaplains do not provide enough outreach for those who do not believe in God. That makes no sense. Why would MAAFT want outreach from chaplains if they don't believe in God and the military is slowly but surely outlawing proselytizing? The lack of outreach by chaplains to atheists seems to be what MAAFT would want rather than the other way around. Have they talked to Mikey Weinstein about this??

The Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute, in a 2009 study, found that 25 percent of military members participating in the study said they had no religious preference, while 3.6 percent identified as humanist, and just 1 percent identified as pagan. 

Last year MAAFT gave their support to another group that was requesting a "humanist" chaplain. Humanists are not necessarily atheists but they are more closely aligned with secularists and non-theists. So again, where would the need arise for a chaplain? Is the group using the word "chaplain" simply to mean "appointed leader"? Because if that's the case they are distorting the meaning of the word for their own purposes.

Based on the findings by the DEOMI, the MAAFT said last year "Such broad-based and growing support of professionals and experts should make it easy for the Department of Defense and the Navy to open their doors to diversity of belief that includes humanists and other non-theists."

Atheism is not a religion. If anything it is the opposite of religion as they do not believe in God or a higher power. By definition they have no need, authority or right to a chaplain.

If the military does this it will be the absolute worst and most absurd example of political correctness to date... foolishness at its absolute worst. But who will be surprised if it happens?

Maybe We're Wrong...

In the last few weeks we've watched protests at a couple of universities that cause commencement speakers to either withdraw or be cancelled. Specifically, complaints by some students and faculty at Rutgers University about her role as Secretary of State in the George W. Bush administration led to Condoleezza Rice withdrawing as commencement speaker for that school of higher learning, where she was supposed to be given another honorary degree.

One of the most accomplished African-American women in our nation's history, a Ph.D from the University of Denver, 7 honorary doctorates, the second female Secretary of State, the only black female Secretary of State, the first female National Security Adviser in history, and a concert pianist who has played for Queen Elizabeth, Rice was vilified by a small group of students and a couple of professors citing “efforts to mislead the American people about the presence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.” Despite their objections, the elected student assembly voted 25-17 to welcome Rice to the campus and to his credit - university president Robert Barchi agreed.

“Free speech and academic freedom cannot be determined by any group,” Mr. Barchi wrote. “They cannot insist on consensus or popularity.”
Protests continued. Anti-war student activists complained that Rice also approved of waterboarding.

“Rice probably has a lot of advice on perseverance, dedication and hard work that she can offer to this year’s graduating class, but what she chose to do with those qualities is certainly questionable to us,” the school newspaper said. 

The majority of students wanted Rice come. The school paper (The Daily Targum) paraphrased one student as saying “If Rutgers were to rescind Rice’s invitation, the University would be remembered as the school that chose to invite [reality TV star] Snooki to speak at an event, but revoke Rice’s.” How sad is that?

Eventually, Secretary Rice took the high road and graciously bowed out.

“Commencement should be a time of joyous celebration for the graduates and their families,” Ms. Rice wrote in a Facebook post. “Rutgers’ invitation to me to speak has become a distraction for the university community at this very special time.”

Fast forward to Brandeis University. That school had invited Ayaan Hirsi Ali to receive an honorary doctorate and speak at the university’s commencement exercises. Ms. Ali, a Somali-born woman raised in Islam, now speaks out against the evils of Islam, such as genital mutilation of young girls - something that she herself experienced, and honor killings of women. She honestly tells people about the mistreatment and oppression of women under Islamic law. And the Muslims don't like it.

A petition was circulated, eventually collecting 6,000 signatures, that excoriated the university for inviting a woman who "engages in hate speech" because she says "Islam is not a religion of peace." How anyone can claim it is, given the facts about how Islamic women are treated.

Brandeis caved in to the protesters and withdrew their invitation to Ms. Ali saying Ali is a “compelling public figure and advocate for women’s rights” but that some of her statements “are inconsistent with Brandeis University’s core values.”

So even if you have freedom of speech that is protected by law, and you're telling the truth, you can't speak at a university commencement if your thoughts and views are deemed controversial by certain groups of people? 

I always thought universities were places not only of higher education but of greater learning through open discussion and shared ideas. Maybe I was wrong. This morning I decided to look up the definition of "university." Merriam-Webster defines it as:

"an institution of higher learning providing facilities for teaching and research and authorized to grant academic degrees."

It seems I was wrong. According to that definition, universities are free to teach what they want how they want and open discussion and exchange of ideas are things that I only imagined taking place. 

Liberals scream for tolerance all the time yet they are the worst at extending it toward those who's political and social views do not match their own. It would be great if universities were politically and socially neutral, welcoming all points of view equally. 

But we all know that's never going to be the case. 

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Cops Need To Use Force According To Age...?

Last week in Hearne, Texas, a 93 year old woman became irate because she could not get her driver's licence renewed. According to her nephew, who was there, the woman armed herself because "he wouldn't give her car keys back to her." (It's unclear to whom 'he' refers.)

The woman (again, according to her nephew) fired at least two shots before a responding police officer shot her. The old woman died.

A tragedy for certain. A 93 year old woman, brandishing a gun and endangering the public, shot by a police officer. The officer was placed on paid leave during the ongoing investigation. Then, a few days later and before the investigation has been completed, city officials voted to fire him.

It's disconcerting to me that Hearne city officials fired the officer before the investigation is complete. Mayor Ruben Gomez recommended termination of Officer Stephen Stem. Gomez "promised that to demonstrators who marched to city hall protesting the shooting of 'Miss Sulie,' as many residents called the woman."

So - a mayor disregards the situation, the officer's rights and the fact that the public was endangered by "Miss Sulie" and bows to the will of a mob? OK - the woman was 93 years old. Are bullets fired by a 93 year old woman somehow less dangerous than those fired by a 29 years old man? Did the officer first order the woman to put the gun down? Did she refuse to put it down? Did she point it toward the officer? Sadly, those questions are not answered in the article I read. The Robertson County District Attorney is refusing to answer whether the suspect fired her weapon because the case is "still under investigation." Yet her nephew says she fired the gun, a gun 'allegedly' belonging to the suspect was found at the scene and, even though the investigation is ongoing, Officer Stem is still fired.

Stem has hired an attorney who says Stem acted appropriately according to the circumstances and that the mayor's actions were "inappropriate and unprofessional."

"He (the mayor) probably knows less facts about what occurred than I do," the attorney said.

What concerns me most in this case, besides the tragedy of  Miss Sulie's death, is the message being sent by Hearne city officials. It seems officers are now required to use force in a manner that is age-appropriate for the suspect regardless of what the suspect is doing. They're obviously not allowed to shoot an armed suspect if he/she is elderly. Does it work the same way if the armed suspect is young? Will there now be an age bracket for the use of deadly force?

To me it sounds like the mayor wanted to get Stem out of the department. Apparently he was involved in another shooting in his short, two-year career, although his attorney say the circumstances were different. He and his fellow officers were chasing several suspects through an unlit area in the wee hours of the morning and Stem fired his weapon. Again, there are no details but the article says he was "cleared by a grand jury," so it seems that shooting was thought to be questionable. 

But one must ask - what is 'questionable' to a mayor who will fire an officer for shooting an armed and active shooter?

Addendum: According to another article, Miss Sulie refused Officer Stem's repeated orders to put the weapon down and fired two shots into the ground. It was then that Officer Stem fired his weapon, hitting her twice in the chest. Justified? Once again ask yourself - is a 93 year old woman with a gun less dangerous than anyone else? What would you do?

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Intolerance Wins Once Again

In a country where people are supposed to be tolerant of the beliefs of others and embrace cultural differences, it seems pertinent to point out that tolerance seems to be turning into a one-way street. With every passing day "tolerance" seems to mean "you agree with me or you're out."

Just last week, David and Jason Benham were filming episodes of their new TV reality show "Flip It Forward" for HGTV. Set to air in October, the show would have followed the brothers as they helped people turn "fixer upper" homes into their dream homes. While HGTV didn't come right out and say it - it is believed the show was cancelled because some website reported that the twins were anti-gay activists who are also pro-life. Obviously you can't allow people like that to have a TV show!

“We were saddened to hear HGTV’s decision,” the brothers said in a statement. “With all of the grotesque things that can be seen and heard on television today you would think there would be room for two twin brothers who are faithful to our families, committed to Biblical principles, and dedicated professionals. If our faith costs us a television show then so be it.”

Can someone please explain to me why it's wrong for someone to disagree with homosexuality or abortion at will, based on their religious or moral values, but it's OK to discriminate against those people based on opposite beliefs? These two guys lost lucrative jobs because they are conservative Christians who disagree with some of society's accepted norms. Just as in the case of Brenden Eich, who was all but forced to resign from his job as CEO of Mozilla/Firefox because six years ago he donated $1000 in support of the now-overturned gay marriage ban in California, a man lost his job because activists on the left decided he didn't deserve to keep it because he didn't believe as they did.

People on the left are always screaming for tolerance. I wonder sometimes if they understand exactly what it means. Merriam-Webster defines tolerance as "willingness to accept feelings, habits, or beliefs that are different from your own." So is that what's happening in this case? Isn't tolerance supposed to work both ways?

“As Christians we are called to love our fellow man. Anyone who suggests that we hate homosexuals or people of other faiths is either misinformed or lying,” the brothers say. “We do not, nor will we ever discriminate against people who do not share our views.” 

But as in the case of Chik-fil-A's Dan Cathy - it's irrelevant what you do or how you treat others. What's relevant is only that you disagree with what the left believes.

Freedom of speech has to include everyone and all beliefs or it is not really freedom of speech. There are those in this country who would censor freedom of speech based on political and/or social ideology. And that cannot and should not be tolerated.

Jonathon Rauch, an openly gay author, journalist and activist, wrote a book several years ago called "Kindly Inquisitors: The New Attacks on Free Thought". He recently wrote an afterward to the book that says 20 years ago "gay Americans were forbidden to work for government, to obtain security clearances, serve in the military ... arrested for making love, even in their own homes ... beaten and killed on the streets, entrapped and arrested by police for sport."

These things changed in just 20 years because there was open debate, he says. Gay people "had no real political power, only the force of our arguments. But in a society where free exchange is the rule, that was enough."

Rauch believes, as do I, that free speech leads to debate which leads to knowledge and understanding. How can one reach an understanding or change an opinion or belief if they are forced to remain silent? For that matter, do people expect someone to be tolerant of others if they're own beliefs are ridiculed and attempts are made to force them into compliance?

I'm not asking anyone to change who they are. That's not my call. I'm simply asking that everyone who demands "tolerance" of their beliefs, lifestyle, or what have you, to be tolerant of those same things in other people - even if they disagree with yours.

As for the Benham brothers - they say they were involved in helping six families remodel their homes as part of the show and they intend to see all six projects to completion with or without HGTV. Does that sound like the attitude of hateful people?

Friday, May 9, 2014

Hillary For President? Really?

The horror story that is being played out in Nigeria involving the 200+ kidnapped girls is something Americans should be closely watching. Radical Islamists, a topic that the Obama administration and all those in the politically correct world like to pretend do not exist,are proving once again how truly evil they are. Kidnapping a girl and selling her into slavery in the name of Allah is horrible. Kidnapping over 200 girls and selling them into slavery, or selling them for marriage, is just plain evil. And it's being done as the world watches.

The Obama administration is sending military, law enforcement and intelligence personnel to Nigeria to assist their government in tracking the girls down, rescuing them and capturing or killing those responsible for it. And I will applaud President Obama for doing the right thing in this situation. (I could get into a rant about Benghazi but I will stay on topic.) Let's all wish these people well and hope they are successful in their mission.

Former Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, was warned about Boko Haram, the group responsible for this heinous act. She refused to put them on the list of terrorist organizations. The Daily Beast reported recently that recommendations by the Justice Department, the FBI, the CIA, and over a dozen Senators and Congressmen to place the organization on that list were ignored by then Secretary Clinton. She is now saying that placing them on the terrorist list could have emboldened them into doing something bad. You mean like kidnapping 300 young girls and selling them into slavery? That kind of bad?

Never one to miss a political opportunity, Clinton now is saying that the kidnapping of over 200 young girls by Boko Haram is “abominable, it’s criminal, it’s an act of terrorism and it really merits the fullest response possible, first and foremost from the government of Nigeria.” Gee - an act of terrorism by a group that she would not declare to be terrorists. How does that work?

One Representative, Patrick Meehan, who wrote "letter after letter" to then Secretary Clinton said:

“We lost two years of increased scrutiny. The kind of support that is taking place now would have been in place two years ago,” he said. The designation would have “enhanced the capacity of our agencies to do the work that was necessary. We were very frustrated, it was a long delay.”

“At the time, the sentiment that was expressed by the administration was this was a local grievance and therefore not a threat to the United States or its interests,” he said. “They were saying al Qaeda was on the run and our argument was contrary to that. It has metastasized and it is actually in many ways a growing threat and this is a stark example of that.”

Of course, MediaMatters is defending Clinton and saying she is being blamed too quickly by quoting a New York Times article (like the NYT is un-biased) that says:

"Boko Haram, the cultlike Nigerian group that carried out the kidnappings, was rejected long ago by mainstream Muslim scholars and Islamist parties around the world for its seemingly senseless cruelty and capricious violence against civilians."

What MediaMatters fails to do it quote Mrs. Clinton the other night when she called this kidnapping an act of terror.  Duh. But what should we expect from MediaMatters?

The bottom line here is that with Benghazi and the Nigeria incident, Hillary doesn't have a great track record. She has shown a gross lack of leadership and really doesn't have much experience that would qualify her to be President. But she's Hillary and many people in the country love her. Why I have no idea. But hey - "what difference, at this point, does it make?"

Please Americans, if you love your country at all, don't even consider this woman for President in 2016. She is evil and self-serving. And just because she is married to Bill doesn't mean she'd be a good President. I, for one, don't want to see another Bush or another Clinton in the White House. But that's just me.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Lois Lerner Held In Contempt... Big Deal

Yesterday the House of Representatives voted to hold Lois Lerner in contempt of Congress for refusing to answer any questions asked of her by the House Oversight Committee. Although she opened her testimony period by asserting she did nothing wrong, she immediately began invoking her Fifth Amendment rights when questioning began. House Republicans say if she asserts her innocence at the beginning she waives her those Fifth Amendment rights.

The decision to hold Lerner in contempt will most likely be a waste of time and money. Unlike a judge, the House has no authority to immediately jail someone when they're found in contempt. The contempt charge is referred to the Justice Department for possible action. Gee - guess who gets to make the decision whether or not to prosecute Lerner....  the only other person currently held in contempt of Congress.

That same person, Eric Holder, has been held in contempt of Congress for nearly two years for refusing to cooperate with the Fast and Furious investigation. Holding him in contempt was purely symbolic since his department is the one that decides whether or not to prosecute him. I'm sure there are some AUSAs out there who would be happy to do it but the decision would come from his Assistant Attorney General. And who believes that's going to happen?

In other news, last night I listened to an exchange by Megyn Kelly and Chris Kofinis, a Democrat strategist. They were discussion the new select committee on the Benghazi incident and Kofinis said "The State Department already did an independent investigation" along with the other hearings that had taken place so there is no reason for the select committee to find out what really happened.

Here is the problem with that logic. First - does anyone expect that an internal investigation of the Benghazi fiasco, in which former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is implicated as being a participant in the cover-up, is going to accomplish anything positive? That's how the current administration operates.

An internal investigator (an IRS attorney and Obama supporter) was appointed to investigate the IRS targeting of conservative groups. After about two weeks the President declared on national television there is "not a smidgen of corruption" in the IRS. That investigation is supposedly still ongoing even as evidence shows the targeting is still occurring.

The Justice Department did an internal investigation of the Fast and Furious gun walking incident, during which 1 Border Patrol agent and hundred of Mexican citizens were killed, and found that while some people in the field needed "criticism and possible disciplinary action". Two people left after the report was released. One retired and one resigned. The report further stated that top Justice Department officials knew nothing about the Fast and Furious operation while it was ongoing.

So apparently we are simply supposed to accept reports from internal investigations that continuously, without fail, find that there is nothing to report. We shouldn't worry that the Obama administration might not be telling the truth.

After all - everyone knows you can keep your health insurance and your doctor.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

You Can't Make This Stuff Up

OK - I suppose you can but in this case I'm not. The following are actual quotes of President Obama. What's interesting is - even though the quotes were recorded via digital video/audio, there are people who will say (including Obama himself) that he didn't really say that or that what he said before doesn't matter because of what he's saying now. One thing about many Obama supporters - they live by the motto "Never mind what he said before - let's just believe what he says now."

On the attempted increase of executive power in Washington in 2008, then Presidential candidate Barack Obama said:

“I taught constitutional law for ten years. I take the Constitution very seriously. The biggest problems that were facing right now have to do with George Bush trying to bring more and more power into the executive branch and not go through Congress at all, and that’s what I intend to reverse when I’m President of the United States of America.”

Interesting. In his State of the Union address in January of this year he backtracked a bit.

“But America does not stand still – and neither will I. So wherever and whenever I can take steps without legislation to expand opportunity for more American families, that’s what I’m going to do.”

Later in January he uttered these words. It seems he has had a memory lapse about the things of which he accused President Bush.

"So Congress should do the right thing and extend this vital lifeline for millions of Americans. Of course, that’s just short term. Long-term, the challenge of making sure everybody who works hard can get ahead in today’s economy is so important that we can’t wait for Congress to solve it. Where I can act on my own without Congress, I’ m going to do so.”

And again in January (it seems January was a big month for the President telling us how he was going to expand executive authority):

"Now, I'm hoping that Congress goes along with this, but I'm not going to wait for Congress."

I won't get into the unilateral changes President Obama made to the health care bill after signing it into law. Legal scholars say he has the authority to approve and implement laws but not change laws to suit his own political needs. The President and his followers disagree. So he does what he wants. And Republicans have yet to take any real action other than to whine about it.

Let's talk a minute about the "shovel ready jobs" the President promised were coming with the stimulus. In December 2009 he made these declarations:

"Already, more than 10,000 of these [infrastructure] projects have been funded through the Recovery Act. And by design, Recovery Act work on roads, bridges, water systems, Superfund sites, broadband networks, and clean energy projects will all be ramping up in the months ahead."

"We’ve got shovel-ready projects all across the country. And governors and mayors are pleading to fund it. The minute we can get those investments to the state level, jobs are going to be created."

Many Americans knew that what he was promising wasn't going to happen. So it came as no surprise when 18 months later the President said:

"Shovel-ready was not as shovel-ready as we expected."

The surprise came in the fact that after billions of dollars had been spent without significant job increases, the President made his statement while laughing. He thought it was funny.

We should have seen all of this coming from the beginning. In 2007, Obama pledged to seek public financing for his presidential campaign. In 2008, he rejected public financing, even though his opponent - Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) - accepted public financing. Obama chose to go with the big money instead.

In the 2008 campaign, Obama rejected the idea that an individual mandate (i.e., requiring individuals to purchase health insurance) should be part of health care reform. In 2010, he signed into law an individual mandate.

In 2007, Obama said:

"The president does not have power under the Constitution to unilaterally authorize a military attack in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat to the nation." 

In 2011, he unilaterally authorized the military campaign in Libya.

What baffles me is that even with the evidence that the President says one thing and does another, some people still believe he's a wonderful man and a wonderful President. It's difficult to understand such a mindset that will allow people to completely overlook his lies (as in Benghazi and the IRS scandal) and only see what they wish to see. 

In May of 2008, during his campaign, President Obama said:

"... it is just wonderful to be back in Oregon, and over the last 15 months we've traveled to every corner of the United States. I've now been in fifty .... seven states? I think one left to go. One left to go. Alaska and Hawaii, I was not allowed to go to even though I really wanted to visit but my staff would not justify it."

He was clearly tired. Who wouldn't be after months of continuous travel and speech after speech (lie after lie)? I can certainly understand how his brain made a little slip. But I mentioned it to one Obama supporter once and that person denied that Obama ever made the statement. I posted the video of it for him and after watching it he still denied that those words came out of the President's mouth. That's not just blind allegiance but blind idiocy. When you watch and listen to someone say something and still deny they said it there's something wrong with you.

I so wish the American people would open their eyes and hearts and take a real look at the man who occupies the Oval Office right now. Take a look at the things he does rather than the things he says. Take off the rose colored glasses of liberalism and put on the thinking caps of patriotism. You might see him in a different light.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Why Benghazi Is Still Important

Let's put politics aside for a few moments and talk about reality. That will be difficult for some because if you criticize the current President for anything you're labeled a racist or a bigot or a hater. So how do you have an open, honest discussion if people simply can't accept the truth about the one they so revere?

More and more evidence is coming to light about the failure and subsequent cover-up by the Obama administration. A new e-mail, written by former Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes to Susan Rice, clearly instructs her to stress that the 9/11/12 attack was a spontaneous result of anger toward a Youtube video, which has been shown to be completely bogus (unless you're the New York Times or Jay Carney.)

There is now the proverbial "smoking gun" because of the e-mail. Ask yourself a logical question. Why would Rhodes tell Susan Rice to push the video story if they weren't trying to hide something else?

So what are they hiding? We now know, thanks to former National Security Council spokesperson Tommy Vietor, that President Obama was not in the Situation Room during the 7 hour long attack. Why not? His spokes people say it's not necessary for him to be in the Situation Room during an emergency because he can be briefed wherever he is. I suppose that's true but here's two thoughts to ponder. If it's not necessary for the President to be in the Situation Room during an emergency what then is the room's purpose? And a more pertinent question, in my humble opinion, is "What possible thing did he have to do that was more important while our consulate was under attack all night long?"

Finally, after 20 months of mostly useless hearings, House Speaker John Boehner has announced a special select committee, headed by bulldog Trey Gowdy, to finally do an in-depth investigation and subpoena people who have the answers. Whether or not those people will tell the truth remains to be seen. In the case of the Obama administration it seems doubtful. President Obama has recently lawyered-up, appointing W. Neil Eggleston, who has made his living defending politicians from various charges, as the new White House Chief Counsel. What's wrong with that, you ask?

W. Neil Eggleston represented Bill and Hillary Clinton during the Whitewater scandal. He was hired by the George W. Bush administration as their representative against congressional inquiries into the administration’s mass firing of employees. Basically, he's the lawyer presidents and politicians turn to when there is questionable behavior being investigated. And with the IRS corruption and the Benghazi cover-up both becoming more and more clear, it seems President Obama may be getting worried.

Former Obama White House senior adviser David Plouffe said yesterday that there is a "very loud, delusional minority" driving the Republicans to politicize the Benghazi incident.

“I think lawyers have spoken to this and it’s out now,” Plouffe, an ABC News contributor, said today on the “This Week” roundtable. “What Benghazi was was a tragedy. What we need to do is figure out how to prevent it from happening again and to try and hold those accountable as we did [Osama] bin Laden. It took a while, but after 11 years we did.”

“The USS Cole bombing, 17 of our sailors died weeks before the 2000 election. What did then Governor [George w.] Bush say? It’s time for a nation to speak as one voice,” Plouffe said. “This has been politicized like we’ve never seen before and I think what’s happening, Richard Nixon talked about a silent majority back in 1968, there’s a very loud, delusional minority that’s driving our politics, that’s in control of the Republican Party.”

“There is no conspiracy here at all,” he added.

Plouffe's comparison to the USS Cole would be laughable if it wasn't so stupid. He seems to think the incidents are similar when in reality - the only thing similar is that both incidents involved acts of terrorism. Bush didn't cover up anything in that attack. He wasn't even President yet. The comparison was ridiculous.

Even Bob Beckel, well known liberal Obama supporter and regular member of "The Five" on Fox News Channel, admitted there was a cover-up. But his response was strikingly Hillary-esque.

“We know Islamic radicals killed these people, what difference does it make anymore?!” 

When he was reminded that the Obama administration covered up the incident Beckel doubled down. “So what? Every administration covers things up!”

“Who cares? Who cares?” Beckel continued. “Average Americans today, they are not sitting there today and saying, ‘Gee, I wonder what happened with Benghazi.’" “We’ve over-killed this. The Republicans are using this purely and simply for political reasons.”

There is a new rumor out now that President Obama's Senior Advisor, Valerie Jarrett, is the person who issued the stand-down order, in Obama's absence, to the military and prevented them from responding to Benghazi. Since she has no authority to issue military orders it would add to the necessity of a cover-up.

So even though we have liberals, from TV pundits to former members of the Obama administration, admitting that the White House lied about Benghazi and has been covering up the truth, they still want us to simply forget it. Four Americans died, the President and his staff did nothing to intervene, and we're simply supposed to ignore it because...

See that's the thing - I can't think of a reason to ignore it. Our consulate in Libya was attacked by terrorists. Two Americans, including our ambassador, were murdered and two others, who ignored stand-down orders and saved numerous lives throughout the night, died heroically defending themselves and their fellow Americans. Our government not only did nothing to help them but turned their backs on the four victims by lying about what really happened. I don't care who the President is politically - what happened in Benghazi (or maybe better words are 'did not happen') was atrocious and any President responsible for what happened afterward should be held responsible - by both parties. 

Richard Nixon resigned for covering up a burglary. No one died and yet five people went to federal prison over it. Come on, Mr. President - it's your turn to do the right thing. 

Saturday, May 3, 2014

History Standing In Front Of Me

This morning I was in Walmart where I waited in line for what I deemed "the oldest cashier in the world" to ring up the purchases of "the oldest customer in the world." They were chatting as the cashier took nearly 10 minutes to ring up about 10 items and another 10 minutes for the customer to pay and move on. I wanted to hurry them up but something told me to just be patient - that they deserved my respect and patience.

Maybe it was that fact that between the two of them they likely had 160 years of living on this Earth. Maybe it was the WWII Special Forces hat the customer was wearing. I couldn't help but wonder what he had experienced during the war.

While chatting about it with my good friend Greg Callahan, we talked about the fact that we seem to have more patience and respect for the elderly people than we do for the younger ones. Part of that is good, old-fashioned, home training but I couldn't help but remind him that it's partly because we identify more with the older ones than the younger ones these days....

But it's more than that. When I see elderly people like that I am reminded of my father (before he died) at the age of 91, and of my step-mother, who is 93. If I even begin to become impatient waiting for one of these "seasoned citizens" to finish up and move out of my way I remind myself of how I would want someone to treat my own family members in their senior years. Even if they're slow, I would want people to be patient with them, allow them their time and space and mistakes. I would want people to help them to the car if necessary and to just show them respect. If this is what I want for my own family members, how could I not do it myself?

Elderly citizens in their 80s and 90s (and above) have experienced so much. They have so much history inside them and more often than not they're willing to share if one just asks. Most seniors I know love to sit and talk and tell you about their past; what they did in life and their favorite memories. And there is so much we can learn by just listening.

The two gentlemen in the store this morning, even though they unwittingly slowed me down a little, enjoyed their conversation. When the customer walked away both men had smiles on their faces. And that put a smile on mine - despite my having to wait for them to finish.

I wanted to thank the elderly customer for his service and sacrifice to our country but there was another customer (a rather large customer) and his cart between us and I really didn't want to try getting past him nor interrupt their conversation. Maybe I'll see him again one day. (It's the only Walmart in the area.) And if I don't, knowing he served our country in one of the greatest wars in history is good enough for me.

As for the cashier - he checked me out in a friendly, slow, methodical manner. I had 7 items which he put in 5 different bags but he was friendly. And I said "Thank you, Sir," when I was finished. As I left the store there was another elderly gentleman collecting money for the Shriners fund. I had no cash whatsoever on me and told him so, and called him "Sir" as well.

I respect my elders. It's how I was raised. And in my 56 years of life, it's something I have learned to do on my own as well. No longer because I was taught it as a child but because as an adult who has experienced much in live myself, I understand that they deserve it. They are living history.

One of my comments on my post this morning was "I hope I live long enough to hold people up in the checkout lines." I just hope those people are as patient with me as I try to be with the elderly in my world.

May God bless each and every one of them... and you.

Friday, May 2, 2014

Do People Understand The First Amendment At All?

A retired military man who works for a hospital in Stockton, California, is involved in a legal action to preserve his right to say "God bless America."

Boots Hawk, (USA Ret.) works in the Quality Management department at Dameron Hospital in Stockton. He is an outstanding employee who has been named "Employee Of The Year" in the past. Hawk was recently instructed by a hospital supervisor to stop including the phrase "God bless America" in his signature block on his e-mails. The supervisor said someone could be offended and suggested that the phrase was equivalent to an employee saying "Death to Christians."

Really? "God bless America" is the equivalent of "Death to Christians"? I wonder where that supervisor went to school.

Hawk complied with the instruction to remove the phrase from his e-mail but when he informed the hospital he was going to seek legal counsel in the matter he was suspended for two days, without pay, for "insubordination."

Hawk sought the assistance of the Pacific Justice Institute, who sent a letter to the hospital pointing out that federal employment law forbids any employer from engaging in harassment of employees because of their sincerely held beliefs and convictions. The hospital took notice because they withdrew the charge of insubordination and changed the suspension to paid leave.

"Without question this hospital's treatment of this war veteran – who was [honored as] Employee of the Year recently by the hospital – has had his rights trampled on and has suffered harassment simply because of the phrase 'God Bless America,'" says PJI's Brad Dacus, who continues to represent Hawk in the case. He says when he began court proceedings against the hospital they instituted a new policy mandating all employees to use a standard signature block with absolutely no deviations.

"For the hospital now to engage in greater censorship in deciding to try to cover their bases and censor all employees – under the pretext of being able to censor him – is not likely going to be sufficient to exonerate them from their prior actions of censoring 'God Bless America' from this heroic war veteran," states the attorney.

The case is ongoing.

Meanwhile, right here in Texas, a second grader was reading her Bible during a free reading period... until her teacher took it away. Apparently the Bible is not appropriate reading material in her class. There are copies of the Bible in the school library but I guess kids can only read those at home.

The parents of the child handled it differently than I would have. Saying they feared retribution from the school, they contacted the Liberty Institute rather than the principal. Personally, I would have gone to the principal and demanded the teacher be educated on the First Amendment. 

One parent said the teacher did the right thing saying "there should be a definite separation." Yet another person who needs to be educated. There is no separation of church and state written into the Constitution. That notion comes from a letter that Thomas Jefferson wrote to a Baptist congregation in Maine that feared government overreach. Unfortunately, and extreme version of separation of church and state has become a common belief in America. And it is a mistaken belief.

The First Amendment guarantees there will be no religion mandated by the government. As such, Americans are free to exercise any religious belief they choose as long as it does not infringe on the rights of others or break written laws. I doubt very much that this little girl's reading material was violating anyone's rights. And she certainly wasn't breaking any laws - especially not the one of "separation of church and state," since it doesn't exist.

In fact, unless she can come up with some valid reason for taking the Bible, the teacher may have violated the child's First Amendment rights. The school district says they are investigating to determine if the incident happened and says if so they will look into whether or not what the student was reading met the district's criteria for their "read to myself" time. Anyone want to bet how it turns out?