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Yep. ANOTHER Robert

(Bet you thought I forgot!)

Long time readers of this blog may remember my Life is replete with folks named Robert, Bob, David, Dave and similar variants.

Why?  I’ve no idea.

I was thinking this morning about someone who may have been the first.

No, not the physician, Indian artist or mediator (as far as I know).

Yep.  His name was(is) Robert Davidson(!)

…and a meme began!

He pretty much raised himself.  His parents were older (and somewhat self-involved).  I’ve no idea what his mother did.  She seemed to be absent a lot.  His father was a retired Air Force Lt. Colonel.  He spent most of his time (when I saw him) drinking liquor in their living room (where we weren’t allowed) and listening to his music.  His older brothers led their own lives, and seemed to be tangentially involved with raising him, trading off duties as it were.

He had a younger sister with mental and physical issues.  She followed us around like a puppy.  The last I heard, she was living more-or-less on her own in assisted living.

But Robert had innate talents.  Auto mechanics, electronics.  And he was the first of our age on the block to do cool stuff.

Build custom bicycles, grow his hair long, get busted for shoplifting (and escape store custody!), smoke dope. (The first time he showed me a ‘baggie’, I thought great, I’m going to prison!) Joy-riding in his parent’s car, before he was licensed.  He spent a Summer stealing VW Bug engines, and never got caught!  (or so I was told…)

And the one that really ticked me off:  Became intimate with a girl.  This ticked me off because he was two years younger than I!

The last I heard, Robert got into computers and was working for the community colleges in this capacity.  With another of my friends (from the magic club) named DAVID!

See, it never ends.  😛

And, with all the Internet tools now available, I’ve been unable to reconnect with him.  Too common a name, I guess.  David is in the wind, as well.

It Happened Again…

A leftist, Democrat, criminal shot up the place!

Four people, including United States Congressman Steve Scalise were shot, the congressman critically.  The shooter reported had asked if the folks on the field were Democrats or Republicans, upon finding out they were the latter, returned to his car, obtained a rifle and handgun and began shooting.

The shooter’s (name redacted) Facebook page was rife with hate toward the Republicans.  He was also a Bernie Sanders supporter.  Bernie has expressed shock at this grievous act.

Of course, if these weren’t politicians, it’d only be a blip on the radar.

In Chicago last weekend, 43 people were shot, 6 of those fatally.

Do we know any of their names?

And, while we’re on the subject, when was the last time a right-winger, Republican, someone NOT a leftist shot up the place?

How many serial shooters are right-of-center?  Or libertarian?

I’ll bet the numbers are small, if any (?)

The Left constantly accuses The Right (tea partisans?) of being violent, bitter, gun owners.  But, when violence occurs, be it shootings, riots, stabbings, WHO are the responsible parties?

And then The Left screams for more gun control, when the police officers doing security on the scene stopped the shooter.  With firearms.

Prayers for all who are injured.  None (from me) for the suspect, who reportedly has been dispatched.

IRS Wrongfully Seized Millions Of Dollars From Innocent Americans

irs

“The rights of some individuals and businesses were compromised,” the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGA) said of a bungled Internal Revenue Service effort to “dismantle criminal enterprises.”

Citing regulations under the Bank Secrecy Act, which requires reporting of bank transactions in excess of $10,000, IRS agents seized $17.1 million from Americans they believed were involved in criminal activity.

Just one problem…

According to a recent report from TIGA, agents were wrong 91 percent of the time based on investigations of 278 of the seizures conducted by the watchdog.

“Most people impacted by the program did not appear to be criminal enterprises engaged in other alleged illegal activity,” TIGTA said in a statement. “The report also concludes that the rights of some individuals and businesses were compromised in these investigations.”

Agents, it turns out, were simply seizing the funds of individuals they suspected of “structuring” deposits in amounts less than $10,000 without bothering to conduct proper investigations.

“In most instances, interviews with the property owners were conducted after the seizure to determine the reason for the pattern of banking transactions and if the property owner had knowledge of the banking law and had intent to structure,” the report said.

Individuals and businesses affected by the overreach often faced major financial difficulty as a result of the government ineptitude.

On top of that, they were forced to work with often unhelpful IRS officials in efforts to retrieve the wrongfully seized money.

“When property owners were interviewed after the seizure, agents did not always identify themselves properly, did not explain the purpose of the interviews, did not advise property owners of any rights they might have, and told property owners they had committed a crime at the conclusion of the interviews,” TIGA reported.

The Institute for Justice, in a 2015 report, provided a prime example of how the IRS abuses negatively affected the agency’s targets:

Lyndon McLellan runs a convenience store in Fairmont, N.C., and has done so without incident for more than a decade. All that changed in 2014, when the Internal Revenue Service used civil forfeiture to seize McLellan’s entire $107,000 bank account. He did not stand accused of selling drugs or even of cheating on his taxes; in fact, he was not charged with any crime at all. Rather, the IRS claimed that he had been “structuring” his deposits — that is, breaking them into amounts of less than $10,000 to evade federal reporting requirements for large transactions. McLellan, like most people, did not even know what “structuring” was, let alone that it was illegal. His niece, who handles the deposits, had been advised by a bank teller that smaller deposits meant less paperwork for the bank, so she kept deposits small.

The government finally returned McLellan’s funds after a legal battle and public outcry, but the small-business owner was still forced to wait nearly two years before the government compensated the thousands he spent battling the wrongful seizure in court.

h/t Personal Liberty

Am I angry?  Of course!

Am I surprised?  NO…

 

‘I Consider Myself A Guest Here’

Canadian William Shatner REFUSES

To Trash Trump: ‘I Consider Myself a

Guest Here’

William Shanter, the ICONIC Star Trek actor himself, refuses to talk ill of President Donald Trump regardless of his feelings for politics. In a recent interview he had with the Daily Beast he spoke all about it, and his new book, ‘Spirit of the Horse’. During this interview, Shatner made it really clear that his name was not to be added to an open letter that was released out of Hollywood last year denouncing Trump’s candidacy.

“I didn’t do that. I would never have done that,” the actor said of the anti-Trump letter posted on the Trek Against Trump Facebook page last September.

There were however, notable personalities of the original star trek series like George Takei (of course) who played Hikaru Sulu, and Star Trek Into Darkness director JJ.Abrams, who was a very avid Clinton supporter did sign that letter.

The Beast reporter did attempt more than once to get Shatner to dish on Trump, and the actor stuck to his guns refusing to do so, making it very clear that he wasn’t willing to speak ill of the president.

“I don’t want to discuss Trump or [George] Takei,” Shatner said, adding: “Listen, I’m Canadian and I’m apolitical. I love America. I consider myself a guest here.”

“I won’t do anything that might get me deported,” the 86-year-old star joked.

The Priceline pitchman, known best for his role as Captain James T. Kirk, commander of the U.S.S. Enterprise, also revealed that while he and Abrams have discussed him having a role in the rebooted Star Trek film franchise, the director hasn’t extended the offer.

“I’ve met with J.J. Abrams, who seems to be running the film franchise now,” Shatner said. “Though I’ve repeatedly expressed my interest in being in one of the Star Trek movies they seem to have no interest in bringing back old Captain James T. Kirk.”

Shatner, who made his small-screen debut as Captain Kirk in 1966, also revealed that he has never seen any of the new films.

A lifelong lover of horses, Shatner’s new book Spirit of the Horse is a love letter to his four-legged friends.

Although he is very liberal in his political beliefs, he knows how to stand for those beliefs without being ridiculous and out of line like his other Hollywood friends.

Yep. I could sit next to him on a plane, introduce myself as a conservative and he’d like me.

That’s how it’s suppose to be.

h/t Facebook, I Have the Truth.com

AMEN, Mr. Shatner and Mr. Wendal!

Now, I’m not an unabashed fan of the current President (although he is certainly a vast improvement over the last one!)  Having said that, I tire of the juvenile and sometimes criminal actions taken against the President.  Like it or not, he IS the President!  And deserves some respect.

(I’d preferred a more libertarian President, stopping this ongoing assault on the Fourth Amendment.  One with a better speaking style.  Wish in one hand…)

To see and hear (most) Hollywood types continue to attack and beat on him is more than shameful.  YES, everyone has a right to an opinion.

But, lets be adult about it, shall we?  Disagree on policy choices, not hairstyles!

 

Press Check, Much?

(from TFB, in part)

Rebuttal: “The Folly of the‘Press Check’”

Browsing through the interwebs as we writers do, I came across an interesting proposition from one Mr. Jeff Gonzales that the “press check” is not appropriate for …”when you strap a firearm onto your body (unless the instructor specifically asks you to use an unloaded pistol or rifle).”

I disagree. I’m no Navy SEAL like Mr. Gonzales, but this assertion fails my logical tests.

Unlike rifles where it is easy in an administrative situation to see the double-stack magazine change sides, most handguns are single-feed weapons and as such, it is near impossible to tell that the weapon is loaded without one of two things – a loaded chamber indicator (this is why I like them) or a press check. Press checks are ideal for administrative times – exactly when you are strapping a firearm to one’s body. In fact, administrative handling is the one time you should be handling a firearm unless drawing to fire or de-gun.

Should one press check in the middle of combat? I would assert the situation dictates it – but it’s likely a hard no in almost all circumstances. But, in an admin function why would one not want to verify their readiness? More on this below.

Mr. Gonzales continues:

 “Why do students want to perform a weapons check? Because we as instructors have failed. We’ve failed to encourage and empower students to understand the importance of readiness.”

Now, I will say that Mr. Gonzales is quite right on his points on willingness, attitude, and readiness, but readiness includes having the weapon ready to perform and if one does not have a loaded chamber indicator – the only way to do that is to press check the gun.

We want to perform a weapons check because we are learned and empowered to actually understand that malfunctions happen. I am checking to make sure that the most critical shot – my first one – has the highest chances of success.

I instruct my students on the importance of handling themselves responsibly with loaded firearms as soon as they can handle their gun safely.

There is nothing worse than drawing your firearm, aiming it at your attacker and hearing a click. To reduce the odds of that happening, start as you mean to finish.

There is absolutely no logical argument here. How is a press check not handling oneself responsibly so long as the firearms safety rules are followed? Then, to imply that BECAUSE one did the press check that they are going to draw a dead trigger is nuts. Do it right – ensure your weapon is in battery and in fact one of the key points of the earlier argument of readiness.

If you feel the need to press check your firearm, you need to ask yourself why. And do whatever it takes to be confident in yourself and your gun’s condition. So that you’re as ready as you can be to fight. And win.

This is a flat-out oxymoron. How can one assert that one should do “whatever it takes to be confident” yet throw out one of the processes that makes one confident?

I press check my guns to ensure that I am ready to win – either combat or competition. Press checking is simple and follows an old maxim: “trust, but verify.”

I choose to verify.

Personally, I have only press-checked at the range, prior to dry practice, or prior to starting a string in competition.  Those few times where the possibility of actual combat have occurred (as with entering a previously locked building as a security guard, or my own home on a couple of occasions after finding the door ajar (yes, I know, I teach retreat to a safe location and call the PD, too!) I was too focused on clearing the area rather than checking to see if the pistol that was a moment prior in my holster was properly chambered!

Taking such action seems to me to be unnecessary, and possibly dangerous.

I guess I agree with the Seal.

YRMV

 

But…But…Immigrants! The Huddled Masses…?!

(from FNC)

Trump Sending So Many Gang Members Back to El Salvador That Officials There Now in a Panic

Via Billy

The Trump administration is sending violent gang members back to their home countries in droves — so many that one country is dreading what’s to come.

El Salvador authorities are holding emergency meetings and trying to come up with new laws to keep track of all the criminals being deported from the U.S., The Washington Post reports.

Gee.  Do you think El Salvador actually supported these folks initially leaving and not coming back?
The Mariel Boat Lift comes to mind…

Davis-Oliver Act Sets Out To Enforce U.S. Immigration Laws

(from FNC)

Via Billy

Immigration impacts virtually every challenge and threat America and Americans confront each day.
Failures of the immigration system have cost thousands of Americans and others present in the United States their lives.

The 9/11 Commission, to which I provided testimony, identified those failure of the interior enforcement program, as being at heart of the ability of terrorists, and not only the 19 hijackers who carried out the terror attacks of 9/11 but other terrorists, as well, to enter the United States and embed themselves as they went about their deadly preparations.

Members of pernicious transnational gangs from around the world, and not just Latin America, have easily entered the United States and set up shop in towns and cities across the United States peddling narcotics and perpetrating violent crimes.

Failures of the immigration system have not only surpassed the wages of American and lawful immigrants but have also cost millions of American workers their very jobs.

 More @ Front Page
I’m all about legal immigration.  This Republic was built on and by immigrants.  Certainly there were illegals one hundred years ago, not passing through Ellis Island (or the equivalent).  But times, technology, and populations have changed.  As have the immigrants, themselves.
There was a time folks strove to come to America to live the American Dream.  Many still do.
But, there are those who hold to their non-American cultural, criminal or religious traditions.
We need to keep them out.
How we do that, and at what cost is the question.
The Manchester bomber was a British citizen, born in Manchester of Libyan immigrants.
‘They’ are playing the long game, people!

With A Stroke Of A Pen…

(from Chris Farrell’s On Watch, in part)

 It’s time for some extreme transparency. 

You’ve heard President Trump talk about extreme vetting for persons seeking to the enter the US from terror hot-spots – well, we need to aggressively exercise a similar technique when it comes to government records that you are owed through the Freedom of Information Act or FOIA.

Judicial Watch files more FOIA requests and litigates more FOIA cases than any other organization in the country.  Much of the Washington corruption you have heard about in the news started with investigative work by Judicial Watch.  Cases like “Fast & Furious,” the political weaponization of the IRS, the effort to cover-up Benghazi, Hillary Clinton’s reckless criminality concerning her outlaw email server, and many other cases.

The FOIA law allows for agencies and departments of the Executive Branch of government to make “discretionary disclosures.”  In plain English, that means President Trump and his cabinet secretaries can release whatever they want – whenever they wish to do so.  It’s up to them.  They can exercise their discretion to release records that are of broad general and news media interest concerning important public policy issues and/or the operations of the federal government.  These discretionary disclosures take nothing more than a stroke of the pen.

Ironically, the Department of Justice under Attorney General Sessions is currently making the exact same legal arguments as the Obama administration – and using all the double-talk and excuses from the Obama era, too.  The Justice Department remains in full cover-up mode for anything that would be embarrassing or illegal for the Obama administration.  That’s frustrating and disappointing, but you need to remember that the rank-and-file staff attorneys at Justice Department headquarters are largely Leftists that continue to support the Obama agenda.  President Trump appears to have a tough road ahead.  BUT, it doesn’t have to be that way.

Discretionary disclosures!  Extreme transparency!  With the stroke of a pen, President Trump and his cabinet secretaries can order the release of all government records concerning any number of important issues and lingering questions.

Here’s just a small sample of some of the cases Judicial Watch is investigating and litigating that could be released in full for the public and news media to examine:

  • FBI 302s – or investigative reports of interviews of President Obama, Rahm Emanuel and Valerie Jarrett during criminal investigation of Rod Blagojevich trying to sell Obama’s Senate seat.
  • The entire FBI’s investigative file of Secretary Clinton’s email practices.
  • Records about the tarmac meeting between former President Clinton and Attorney General Lynch at the Phoenix airport.
  • Draft indictments of Hillary Rodham Clinton prepared by Whitewater Deputy Independent Counsel Hickman Ewing, Jr.
  • Records about the Intelligence Community’s decision not to conduct a damage assessment of Secretary Clinton’s criminal email practices.
  • Records of notes, updates, or reports in the Office of the Secretary of State about Benghazi.

If you’re looking for some accountability for what’s happened in this country for the past eight years there’s a starting point.  But, there’s much, much more.

It’s time for extreme transparency.  Let’s get past the cover-ups and double-talk from the past eight years.  Your employees owe you records and answers. President Trump can provide them with the stroke of a pen.

I’m Chris Farrell . . . On Watch 

Or not.

And what about the current administration’s transparency and accountability?

So much for draining the swamp!

ISIS And US Progressives – What’s The Difference?

(From Bayou Renaissance Man, in part)
Vox points out:

As he says:  “What, precisely, is the difference? There is no difference. It’s just vandalizing history of which one does not approve.”

Methinks he has a point.

Peter

Climate March!

(Naw – no political agenda attached here…)  😛

I attended a small, non-political meeting of personal interest to me yesterday morning.  One of the ‘rules’ is we don’t discuss politics – AFTER the event begins.

BEFORE it began, however, one of the participants began whining how later Saturday morning there was scheduled to be a ‘Climate March’.  I inquired if it was for or against the climate.

She didn’t get it.

I saw THIS, this morning on Free North Carolina

REVOLUTION: Leftists March With Communist Flags in Front of the White House

Via Billy

Leftists commies marched today to protest ‘climate change justice’ whatever that means, and did so by marching with Communist flags in front of the White House.

I guess an ideology that killed over 100 million people will bring justice to the United States. Leftists don’t even hide their support for Communism anymore. These people are historically illiterate, most likely a product of ‘higher education’.

More with video @ The Gateway Pundit
Climate Change Justice?  I guess Lenin’s Useful idiots* were out in full force, yesterday.
The idea that humanity (read Western Civilization) is responsible for all of the problems in the World, including changes in the climate (due to industrialization, pollution, and probably being White) is ludicrous, especially given the freedom and prosperity brought to more individuals from these systems that at any time in recorded history.  (And ignoring the blackmail and bribery used to fudge the climate figures!)  The fact they see the solution to this situation as rampant globalization, human rights abuses, and income redistribution (leveling the playing field) and refusal to acknowledge the continued failure of collectivism toward these ends points to the useful idiots part.
*Lenin’s Useful idiots – how Vladimir Ulyanov characterized college students as easily-manipulated dupes, because of their unformed idealism and lack of Life experience.

 

"Round up the usual suspects."

In Loving Memory…