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American Heroes

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The Foul Legacy Of Thomas Jefferson

Say WHAT?

Now, I’ve said before numerous times in this blog (and in real life) that I love this Nation, warts-and-all!  I understand that so doing can be a complex, and sometimes confusing endeavor.

Yes, Jefferson owned slaves.  And he even took Sally Hemmings to Europe.  And may have fathered a child with her. (DNA evidence does not exclude his brother as the father, which was also a possibility).  And yes, she was a slave – had absolutely no choice.

But, I’m not here to debate this.

Jefferson was a great mind, who coalesced theoretical ideas of John Locke (that Social Contract guy) into one of the great documents in human history – The Declaration of Independence.  He and the Founding Fathers designed this Nation, and he devised the 3/5 compromise, setting the stage to grow this country as a confederacy and for freeing the slaves a couple of generations later.

Yes, he was human.  A widower.  And alone much of his life.

Now comes this:

Citizen offers Proclamation to rid Charlottesville of the “foul legacy” of Thomas Jefferson (link)

Send In The Clowns: The Charlottesville Circus(link)

 The “council meeting” at Charlottesville is an example of the war strategies of the enemies of freedom and the South. It isn’t a deep, intricate strategy but it is effective. It goes something like this:

1. Call a meeting of the local governing group to ostensibly hear the “voice of the People.”

2. Make sure that the “People” who support the agenda of the governing group (or at least its majority) know that they will have free rein in that meeting no matter what “opening remarks” are made calling for civility and proper conduct.

3. Fill the audience with people for whom “civility and proper conduct” has no meaning other than the restraints under which their opponents will be held.

4. Permit the meeting to degenerate into chaos with the larger and louder group shouting down and intimidating those who have come to participate in what they thought was the democratic process; it isn’t.

5. Have the media carry the story that whatever “plan” is being considered by the “governing body” has the approval of the people and that those who objected were “racists” or in a small minority.

Result? They win (again), we lose (again) and the cultural genocide goes on. We have got to stop thinking that such spectacles as the Charlottesville “meeting” represent a condition of social anarchy and that these “meetings” simply indicate the failure of local government to control the attendees. No such thing! It is as orchestrated as a ballet with the exception that those who are not “in” on the program find themselves trying to make order out of chaos and because most of the time our side is well bred, polite and considerate, we get our collective backsides kicked from here to Sunday.

You should really go and read all of it.

That way, you can determine from where this “foul legacy” truly emanates.  (Here’s a hint –  It’s NOT Jefferson!)

h/t Free North Carolina

McCain = Kerry

Conservative media folk like to paint John Kerry as a defacto traitor.  Or at least as a wimp.  His Swift Boat companions did derail him, albeit temporarily.  And now he’s out there making innocuous statements about war, terrorism and Iran.  As the United States’ Secretary of State.

Who knew?

Speaking of who knew (this is what’s known as a segue – albeit a poor one) RINO Arizona Senator John McCain has always been a mystery to me.  Sometime-Republican, sometime-conservative, sometime NOT, the man has made more waffles than the WAFFLE HOUSE!

And now THIS:

The “war hero” candidate buried information about POWs left behind in Vietnam.

Eighteen months ago, TAC publisher Ron Unz discovered an astonishing account of the role the 2008 Republican presidential nominee, John McCain, had played in suppressing information about what happened to American soldiers missing in action in Vietnam. Below, we present in full Sydney Schanberg’s explosive story.

* * *

John McCain, who has risen to political prominence on his image as a Vietnam POW war hero, has, inexplicably, worked very hard to hide from the public stunning information about American prisoners in Vietnam who, unlike him, didn’t return home. Throughout his Senate career, McCain has quietly sponsored and pushed into federal law a set of prohibitions that keep the most revealing information about these men buried as classified documents. Thus the war hero who people would logically imagine as a determined crusader for the interests of POWs and their families became instead the strange champion of hiding the evidence and closing the books.

Almost as striking is the manner in which the mainstream press has shied from reporting the POW story and McCain’s role in it, even as the Republican Party has made McCain’s military service the focus of his presidential campaign. Reporters who had covered the Vietnam War turned their heads and walked in other directions. McCain doesn’t talk about the missing men, and the press never asks him about them.

The sum of the secrets McCain has sought to hide is not small. There exists a telling mass of official documents, radio intercepts, witness depositions, satellite photos of rescue symbols that pilots were trained to use, electronic messages from the ground containing the individual code numbers given to airmen, a rescue mission by a special forces unit that was aborted twice by Washington—and even sworn testimony by two Defense secretaries that “men were left behind.” This imposing body of evidence suggests that a large number—the documents indicate probably hundreds—of the U.S. prisoners held by Vietnam were not returned when the peace treaty was signed in January 1973 and Hanoi released 591 men, among them Navy combat pilot John S. McCain.

Mass of Evidence
I always thought that the guy (or gal) who occupied Barry Goldwater’s Senate seat should be more conservative.  or at least more principled.  Perhaps he’s just as crooked as his opposite number, Hillary Clinton!?

A Humble Remembrance

A loyal and (sometimes) vocal follower of this tiny blog pointed me in a direction I’d somehow overlooked, in local history:

35 years later, we should remember fallen firefighter

Ed Gaiki

Ed Gaiki

Ed Gaiki.

I’d not heard or thought of his name in many years.  Thirty-five years ago, I was still living in this town, before I got married and a year later bought a house with the wife and moved to ‘the big city’.

(excerpted from the above link)

Ed was the only firefighter to die in the line of duty in this town’s firefighting service in it’s history.

…As they arrived, smoke was rising from the roof of the Jumbo Bagel Deli, at the end of the strip center.

Within five minutes of the call, Gaicki and eight other firefighters would go into building to search for people and the source of the smoke. Within 15 minutes, the roof collapsed, flaming wood pancaking down onto the nine firefighters.

Deputy Chief Gary Ells, the only remaining active firefighter who was there that night, was one of those trapped. Four of the men got out quickly. News reports at the time describe how four others, including then-Capt. Ells, had to crawl through the building, beneath the remnants of the flaming roof, eventually having to share an air tank before they were rescued.

One man didn’t make it out alive.  (January 15, 1980)

He was 27 years old.

A memorial service on the anniversary of his death will be held at 11:30 a.m. Thursday at Gaicki Park, 5616 South McClintock Drive. (January 15, 2015)

“… I think it’s also important to keep the story alive as a reminder to the rest of us, of the men and women who serve us every day and sometimes pay dearly for it.”  – Deputy Chief Gary Els

Since that time, much personal history has passed.  We had a daughter, got divorced, lost the house, and our daughter passed away.  And I never got to go into ‘public service’, as I had wanted.  I probably didn’t remember, as I’d been just married two weeks before (January 1).

Regardless, we should always remember those who gave their all, whether in the armed services, police or the fire departments.  We owe them that measure, minimally.

Thanks, Ed.

h/t The Arizona Republic, KM

Veterans Day

honor_redditMost holidays for me traditionally meant either two things:  I had to work or I had the day off.  Of course, Christmas was big when I was a kid, but other adult holidays had no meaning.  Veteran’s Day used to be one of those.
The Vietnam War brought the sacrifices of veterans to my attention, largely because I wanted to be in the military but was denied membership due to my physical disability.  Friends left, some didn’t return.
And I always tried to make it a practice at TMCCC to stop by the desks of veterans with whom I worked and thank them for their service.
Lonnie, Glenn, Glenn, Mark, John, Stan, Jim, Jodie, Ardith, John, Gloria and Clive (who had served in the U.K. Armed Services – with a name like Clive, how could he not have?  We miss you.)

To all my military friends on Facebook and WordPress, Thank You for your Service.

A Navy Seal Uncloaks

The identity of the Navy SEAL who killed Osama Bin Laden has finally been revealed. His name is Rob O’Neill, and his resume reads like it should for one of the most highly trained special operators in the world.

According to the Daily Mail, O’Neill is the one responsible for putting three rounds into the former Al-Qaeda Commander.

O’Neill has served in over 400 combat missions. In addition, he has earned 52 distinguished awards.

He helped in the mission to save the life of Captain Phillips from Somali pirates.

After serving as a SEAL for sixteen years, O’Neill now works as a motivational speaker, sharing his SEAL experience and encouraging others to “Never Quit.”

O’Neill was planning to reveal his identity on Fox News in a few weeks. However, the Daily Mail’s exclusive interview with O’Neill’s father has clearly changed things.

When asked whether he or his family is worried about being targeted by terrorists, O’Neill’s father said they were not concerned, stating, “‘I’ll paint a big target on my front door and say come and get us.”

And that last paragraph outlines the crux of this post.

A United States Navy Seal – who took an oath and was sworn to secrecy – has come forward and identified himself.  If I recall, as recently as last week, the Navy ORDERED the personnel involved in the Bin Laden operation to keep quiet about it.  Other sources claim he revealed himself because the Defense Department was reneging on promises made him, and he isn’t getting full retirement benefits as he didn’t finish his requisite 20.

“Never Quit” – but he quit(?)

Now, certainly we desire open government in this Republic, but we don’t want those who serve us or their families to be put at risk because of this openness.  And, certainly the government has been remiss regarding many promises made to our service personnel.

I’m proud he and his team (not the politicians) got Bin Laden, but I’m a little unclear as to his motivation or ethics here.

Any veterans care to expound on this issue?

Behind The Times

Most of you know I was raised on TV and movies.  It was an escape from my somewhat dysfunctional family and from the daily stress of life.  My roomie and I still enjoy much on electronic media, especially now that so many choices are available.

I recently completed watching the many morality plays that made up Have Gun – Will Travel.  Certainly NOT your typical horse opera.  And I went looking for something else.

And I found something.  It was produced in 2008.  (see, behind the times!)

john adamsJOHN ADAMS

It was an HBO production, and I found it on On Demand on DISH.  A seven part mini-series.

This, too, is no horse opera.  It is based on the David McCullough book about our second President, and his life leading up to his Presidency.  He was not handsome; he was not a great orator.  He didn’t stir the passions his cousin Sam Adams did.

But, he WAS a man of principle.

I find myself wondering if he was the last man of principle to hold that office, politics being as they are.

He abhorred slavery, and unlike some of the other Founding Fathers didn’t own any.  He was very uncomfortable with Dr. Franklin’s dalliances while they were on a diplomatic visit to France during The Revolution, and by all accounts was loyal to his wife.  He was not afraid to pick up a gun in defense of his country.

But few remembered the second President.  Until the book and this mini-series.

You should read/watch it!

Stolen Valor

Courtesy of ENDO…

This tool. Derp:

Stolen-Valor-memeThere are few things lower than stolen valor.  It’s even more irritating when these idiots don’t even do proper research like in the video. *smh*

It’s too bad there are laws that would get people in hot water, for making douchebags like this drive home naked (at the very minimum).

As a 102nd Chairborne Ranger keyboard black ops veteran, I take people who pretend they are bloggers VERY seriously. (end)

 

As for me, I was never in the military – not for lack of trying.  But my disability was too much for them, even at the height of Vietnam.  My paternal grandfather was a Marine, and I aspired to follow in his footsteps.

But it was not to be.

I’ve thought, on occasion, about buying one of those sets of sweats.  You know, with the word MARINES emblazoned on it.  To honor him and all who have served.  But I cannot bring myself to do it.  Not only do I not qualify (not being a former Marine, and all) but I would HATE to hobble around in them and have someone at the supermarket or gun show think I was some kind of wounded warrior!

How these bastards put on a uniform and medals they didn’t earn is just beyond me!  They are beneath contempt!

It’s too bad there are laws that would get people in hot water, for making douchebags like this drive home naked (at the very minimum).

Minimum indeed!

‘The Body’ is ‘Victorious’ over ‘The Widow’

From the AP:

A federal jury sided with Ventura in his lawsuit against “American Sniper” author Chris Kyle, who was killed last year in Texas. Though Ventura honed a tough-guy reputation as a pro wrestler and action movie actor, he maintained the legal battle was about clearing his name among his beloved fellow Navy SEALs, not about losing a supposed fight.

Kyle — reputed to be the deadliest sniper in U.S. military history — said in his memoir that he punched Ventura in California in 2006 after Ventura said the SEALs “deserved to lose a few” in Iraq. Ventura disputed that the confrontation, including the punch, ever happened.

An 8-2 jury awarded Ventura $500,000 for defamation and $1.3 million under the theory of unjust enrichment, saying that a portion of Kyle’s profits from his book were gained at the expense of Ventura’s reputation.

After threats of a hung jury plagued the courtroom, lawyers on both sides agreed to accept a verdict if 8 of the jurors agreed as to the result. Although it’s likely that the unjust enrichment portion of the damages will be paid by publisher HarperCollins’ insurance policy, Ventura’s attorneys are expected to go one step further by demanding HarperCollins remove the disputed section from Kyle’s book.

(more…)

Now, to be fair, I’ve not read the book, nor do I know either of the litigants.  I originally liked Mr. Ventura, he being a former Navy Seal and all, and a self-professed libertarian.

Then, it appeared he went off the deep end, consorting with the likes of Oliver Stone’s son and others more comfortable with communists than lovers of freedom.  And his whack-job TV show Conspiracy Theory bore this out.

And now this.

 

h/t Legal Insurrection

Today in History

I remember walking home about a mile-and-a-half (in the Summer heat, in Tempe, Arizona) the day of the Moon landing, with friends Jim and John, after bowling a few lines @ Tempe Bowl.  The RED CARPET Lounge, in the bowling alley, had an exterior sign missing some letters.  As we were irreverent high-schoolers, it was always the Ed Carp Lounge to us!

We came home to watch the history on our televisions.

Interesting that there is a direct line from JFK asking we land on the Moon ‘in this decade’ (certainly as a technology/arms race with the Soviet Union), to the Moon landing, to further development of solid-state technologies leading us to personal computers, the Internet and cellular telephones.

We didn’t know the half of it watching Neil and Buzz!

But we were proud.

h/t Theo Spark

Truth, Justice And The American Way

A few years back Superman (2011 in DC Comics) announced he was renouncing his U.S. citizenship!  Now, I’ve not been a comic book reader/consumer since I was 10-11 years old, but I was always a big Superman fan.

I found this action repulsive.  One – that the beloved character would do such a thing, and Two – that in so doing such a children’s fictional comic would make the national news.  After all, they ARE just comic books.

Fast-forward to NOW.  It was announced a couple of months ago (and made the national news again recently) that beloved perennially-in-high-school everyteen comic book character Archie Andrews would die in the comic book.  This was NOT due to his having been in high school 78 years.

It was because he would dive in front of an assailant attacking his friend with a gun, and his taking a bullet for him!  Archie’s GAY friend!

What do I make of this?

Political correctness aside, I like to believe I would have done the same thing for any good childhood friend.  My best friend from third grade through college was a legitimately brilliant.  IQ off the charts.  Socially, less skilled.  But, except for his studies and church, my constant companion.  He was the geek I aspired to be, even though I didn’t have the mental acuity.

After his own father disowned him when he came out of the closet as a college freshman, and my own father lampooned his gayness, I had to stand up for Carl.  Fortunately, no one shot him.  And I, myself, had to overcome childhood indoctrination regarding gayness, and what that means.  After all, sexual preference aside, he remained my friend!

I’m not yet certain how I feel about comic books being tools for political correctness.  Of course, even Peanuts eventually had a Black character.  I suppose comic books must change with the times, as well.  I don’t know how the Archie friend’s character’s gayness is shown to the comic book audience.  Obviously kids are more aware of such things than I was 50-60 years ago.

But, I know one thing.

Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.  –  John 15:13 (ASV)

If we can teach this to the self-absorbed-faces-glued-to-their-cell-phone adolescents, then all is not lost.   If only adults read comic books.

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1. ALL GUNS ARE ALWAYS LOADED.

2. NEVER POINT YOUR MUZZLE AT SOMETHING YOU ARE NOT WILLING TO DESTROY.

3. KEEP YOUR FINGER OFF THE TRIGGER UNTIL YOUR SIGHTS ARE ON THE TARGET AND YOU ARE READY TO SHOOT.

4. KNOW YOUR TARGET AND WHAT'S BEYOND.

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"I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain." - Bene Gesserit, from Frank Herbert's Dune

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