Wednesday, September 30, 2009

American Grit

Whatever happened to being intensely patriotic? And whatever happened to good ol fashioned, rough-edged, American grit?

You know - the kind where that interesting soccer game that the folks with funny accents play gets cowboyed up to the point that you need helmets and pads to reduce the probability of severe cranial injury.

That's reduce - not prevent.

And what's all of this about having to be a Global community? I realize that the United States must cohabitate with the rest of the nations on the Globe, but I am a citizen of one country and one country only.

I have neighbors. I cohabitate with them on the same block. But I only live in my house. And if I decide to put up a fence, I don't ask them for permission. I don't feel any guilt. And if their roof is leaking, I certainly don't feel obligated to pay for the repair to improve their quality of life.

I've been thinking about this since reading Brohica's last post. I, too, believe in peace through superior fire power. You say that in some circles and the listener will laugh a nervous laugh and hope you're joking.

I'm serious. And I'm proud of that fact. I would open up a discussion with Ahmadinejad. I'd call him up and say:

"You know, Dinny. Can I call you Dinny? Whatever, I will anyway. See, Dinny - [insert sound of me eating potato chips here] - you're way behind the 8-ball in this whole nuclear arms development thing. We've already got a program that's pretty awesome. I mean, seriously. It''s just awesome. Just take my word for it. You don't wanna take my word for it? Fine - I guess I'll just prove it, then. Later, Dinny."

Bam - problem solved. One way or another, that is.

I'm not trying to be overtly violent. It's like Dick Butkus said: "I'm not so mean. I wouldn't ever go out to hurt anybody deliberately - unless it was, you know, important, like a league game or something."

Of course, I'm being a bit facetious. A bit. I just wonder what happened that you have to hide your fervent patriotism so people won't think you're a right-wing nut job at worst and a Republican ideologue at best. Why is it I feel like I'm Axel Foley and I've found myself in the twilight zone known as Beverly Hills?

Axel Foley wasn't looking for trouble, he just possessed some good ol American Grit. He knew that sometimes when defending your territory you have to get bit disreputable. Being liked is not the issue. Protecting that which is valuable to you is. And my country, the freedoms it gives me and the ideals on which it was founded are very valuable to me. To protect them, I'm prepared to get a bit disreputable.

Governing at its Best

I learned via the Drudge Report today that the city of Los Angeles is taking a bold step to better the lives of its citizenry.

In what I am sure will be a move that will help almost 10 million people sleep better at night, including many who have the difficult task of waking up every morning to wear make-up and pretend to be someone else in front of a camera, all new structures built in LA - including private homes - must be...graffiti proof.

Not even I can think of a clever zinger that could possibly top that.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Its a Mad Mad Mad Administration

Utopia, an ideal fictional reality.
  • Obama pledges to get rid of nuclear weapons.
  • Ahmadinejad says Obama should back off Iran's nuclear program.
  • Everyone hugs, sings kumbaya and we have peace in our lifetime.
Brohica's take?  Peace through superior firepower... priceless.

Much Ado About Nomenclature

Nomenclature refers to the naming of things that are related in some way.  Grouping things in that manner creates a cohesiveness that keeps everyone connected that is involved in the same sphere of interest or experience.  For example, when I know the buzzwords and technical phrases for the business I work in, I can more effectively communicate with others in my field.

I have always loved the intricacies of the written and spoken word, and realized that words have power if used correctly.  That was even before I ever heard George Carlin's "The Seven Words You Can't Say on Television".  (Before you get too worried, I will try to keep this G rated.) As a kid, there were phrases that my Dad would use that would crack me up.  I still don't know how it was first measured, but to this day I'm pretty impressed when someone is "tougher than boiled owl scat". 

However, it was not until I joined the military that I really learned to turn a colorful phrase.  I learned that the same expletive can have a cornicopia of meanings depending on the inflection and delivery.  I also learned to appreciate the value of an acronym.  The military thrives on order, and learning the both the official and unofficial nomenclature of the military is an important part of becoming a soldier.

What does that mean to the non-veteran?  It means that by learning some of the important nomenclature of the military, you can more effectively communicate with your friends, family, clergy and co-workers.  On second thought, you should probably just stick with your friends and select co-workers for now.

As much as the military thrives on order, chaos has a way of interrupting that order.  The military has adopted a valuable set of terms to describe in a matter of fact way that something that has gone awry.  You may be surprised at how many of these you already know.  Although there may be some argument among experts, the terms below are arranged in a roughly ascending order:

SNAFU - Situation Normal All Forked Up.*
FUBAR - Forked Up Beyond All Recognition.*
BOHICA - Bend Over Here it Comes Again.
* - Clusterfork is also sometimes generically used instead.
Such terms may be particularly valuable given the general malaise in our country today.  The following examples are intended to assist you in employing these terms properly for daily use. 

Did you hear about the VA SNAFU with the delayed GI Bill benefits?
Yeah, what a clusterfork!

Ahmadinejad denies the Holocaust, and is outed for hiding nuclear facilities in the same week.  Dude is FUBAR, or will be if Israel goes off on him.
The President is giving a speech on health care again tonight. BOHICA!
As you can see by the foregoing examples, knowledge of the appropriate nomenclature can be very useful.  I hope you agree

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

A Jury Of My PEER's

I don't think any conservative could get a fair trial in front of a jury of his or her PEER's in the court of public opinion right now.  All those regular folks out there disrupting town hall meetings now have a new epithet to add to their collection.  In addition to being called tea baggers, birthers, and astroturfing nazi's, they are now also apparently potential ultra right wing domestic terrorists.

You may have seen the sad story about Bill Sparkman.  Sparkman was the local Boy Scouts of America director, substitute teacher, and Census worker in Southeastern Kentucky who was found hanged with the word "fed" written on his chest.  I certainly hope they catch whoever perpetrated this shocking crime.  Although I shouldn't be by now, I was almost as dismayed when I reached the end of this article.  In case you did not make it that far, it reads:
A private group called PEER, Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, tracks violence against employees who enforce environmental regulations, but the group's executive director, Jeff Ruch, said it's hard to know about all of the cases because some agencies don't share data on instances of violence against employees.
From 1996 to 2006, according to the group's most recent data, violent incidents against federal Bureau of Land Management and Forest Service workers soared from 55 to 290.
Ruch said that after the 1995 bombing of the federal building in Oklahoma City, "we kept getting reports from employees that attacks and intimidation against federal employees had not diminished, and that's why we've been tracking them."

"Even as illustrated in town hall meetings today, there is a distinct hostility in a large segment of the population toward people who work for their government," Ruch said. [Emphasis added]
To me the leap from people protesting health care to being associated with the type of people that perpetrated the Oklahoma City bombing is quite a leap.  I'd put it right up there with Evil Knievel trying to jump over the Snake River Canyon.  For those of you not old enough to remember that stunt, it fell far short.

From perusing the PEER website, it appears their primary concern is environmental advocacy via combatting governmental cover-ups and lies through public employee whistleblowers.  I appreciate fighting government corruption, especially where my tax dollars are concerned.  What really concerns me is throwing out an unsupported statistic to suggest that it indicates a political reality.

I was able to locate a PEER news release from 2003 which included statistics from 1995 through 2002.  Clearly the statistics show an increase in violence against USFS and BLM employees by an average of about 23% a year for those years.  However, there is no indication of the breakdown of the instigators on political lines.  It occurs to me that right wing extremists aren't the only group in society that use federal lands.

From 2001, "The Earth Liberation Front has taken credit for the setting of timed incendiary devices at the Bureau of Land Management's (BLM) Litchfield Wild Horse and Burro Facility".  The ELF is hardly a right wing extremist group. 

If the altercation between hippies and Forest Service officers in Wyoming last year is any indication, passive resistance may be, well, passe'.  I'm trying to imagine 400 Rainbow family "warriors" advancing on 10 officers, and I'm thinking that even one clown can be terrifying.

That is not to say that just left wing wackos are the only violent actors on our public lands.  The National Park Service reported a spike in violence against its empoyees in 2003.  This includes incidents such as the murder of an officer in Arizona's Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument who was pursuing members of a drug cartel hit squad from Mexico, and run ins with drug smugglers and illegal fishermen in Florida's Biscayne National Park.  Additionally, just this spring the BLM issued a press release warning the public about "an increase in dangerous illegal activities and an escalating trend in border violence" in the Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area near the California Mexico border.

I hope you get my point.  An environmental ideologue analogizing town hall protestors expressing their concerns regarding the administration's policy with increased violence against federal employees is sheer idiocy.  That some reporter or editor believed that it was fine to include in this article without qualification, is reprehensible.  I think the jury of my media PEER's is fixing this trial.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Logical Conclusion?

I don't know if I can take 3 years and 4 more months of this insanity.  As you review the sound bite below, please keep in mind that people in this country elected him, and we will all be paying him a healthy pension some day.

So Representative Hank Johnson's logical conclusion regarding Joe Wilson's interruption of the President is that the KKK will soon be riding through the countryside intimidating folks?  This does not sound like any logical construction I have heard of before.  So, I can only guess at Representative Johnson's "logic":
  • Some white men from the South are racists. Joe Wilson is a white man from the South.  Joe Wilson is a racist.
  • Some people that disagree with the President are racists.  Joe Wilson disagrees with the president. Joe Wilson is a racist.
  • The President is a black man. Anyone who isn't black and disagrees with a black man is a racist.
All of these "logical conclusions" are obviously false, yet they threaten to overtake the health care debate. As previously discussed on Regular Bros, Maureen Dowd wrote that Joe Wilson's outburst was racist, as did Jimmy Carter. It is quickly becoming clear to me that when things get tough for this administration, its supporters are more than willing to play the race card... early and often.

Given this "logic", isn't Bill Clinton a racist too?  It was hinted that Bubba was race baiting during the primaries. By comparing Obama's campaign in South Carolina to Jesse Jackson's campaigns there in 1984 and 1988, Bubba was obviously doing so as a commentary on ethnicity, right?  Later Bubba accused the Obama campaign of playing the race card, and then (in true Bubba fashion) called it a machination of the press.

Perhaps they threatened to expose Bubba's KKK ties.  After all, he seems to fit the logical profile.  Living as close to Arkansas as I do, I would have thought that the news of Bill Clinton's KKK riding around the countryside intimidating people would have made the news around here.

The only logical construct I can make out of this is:

  • If we don't like what you say, then we will lable you as a racist.

Something Smells Fishy

As pointed out Sunday night on a great Ben Ferguson Show, the Democrats have the majority, so why can't they pass a health care bill?

It is a great question.  I tend to believe it is directly related to the backlash they have witnessed over health care.  Maybe the Democrats really don't have the votes and are playing the race card as a red herring to get their poop in a group.  Perhaps it will be the excuse they use to let health care die (for now), and they plan to use it as a political albatross to hang around the necks of their opponents.   It could also be that they want some more "favors" from Obama first, since the extra dollars they slipped in to the stimulus package for pet projects at the last minute have now been spent.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Celtic Clean Air

Picture yourself with your family at a local Celtic Faire, taking in the sights on a lazy Saturday. You might hear some bagpipes, a clog or two clacking on the dance floor. But I defy you to say that you'd close your eyes, picture the plaid scene and expect to hear: "Are you interested in clean energy?"

I know I hit the stroller brakes. Kinda brings the record to a screeching halt, doesn't it?

"Oh, about as much as the next person, I suppose," said my wife with a smile, trying to move along. I love her.

The young activist sat behind an Empower America sign, or something like that. She wore a green t-shirt to hammer home just how passionate she is about green energy.

"Well there is currently legislation in the Senate that would help promote clean energy, and we're gathering signatures on this petition to urge Tim Johnson to vote for it."

"You're talking about cap-and-trade," I asked.

"That's right."

"No, thank you, I think we'll pass," my wife and I said, practically in unison. Like I said - I love this woman.

Now perhaps someone might be able to explain to me the pertinence of a pro cap-and-trade petition at a Celtic Faire? One might think you should have something to share that speaks to Irish or Scottish heritage, but apparently all you have to do is pretend it's St. Patrick's Day and wear green.

I mean, I know they like to call it "green" energy, but that doesn't exactly refer to a bunch of leprechauns pedaling away on treadmills trying to power the Lucky Charms factory.

Peace Of My Mind

"Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me."  This is the opening refrain of a hymn I have heard countless times.  It has been going through my mind all day, ever since I saw the Nancy Pelosi clip below this morning.

Poor Nancy is all choked up about those potentially violent right wing protestors out there. You know, the ones that aren't looting, burning, overturning cars, etc. So it occurred to me that Pelosi would probably change the words to this hymn to "let it begin with thee". I mean, great leader that she is, I didn't hear her cowboying up and owning her part in heating up the rhetoric. Not that I would have expected it.

Anyway, in researching this familiar hymn, I noted a couple of interesting things. First, I was surprised to learn that the song was composed in 1955. I would have thought it was much older. Second, many websites out there state that the song was composed for the United Nations. Talk about putting a guy off his feed.

I eventually discovered the website of the company that has distribution rights to the song. The site says that the song was written by Sy Miller and Jill Jackson in 1955, and introduced to a group of teens at a high school retreat in California.  It spread around the world from there, and has since been performed by luminaries around the globe.

So what about the United Nations?  I assume that attribution arose from one of the koolaid drinkers out there who truly believe that the U.N. is the protector of world peace.  Who knows what such people think, or why they say the things they say (Al Gore is the inventor of the Internet and protector of the planet)?  Perhaps they are just taking liberties with and dramatizing the truth, like Nancy Pelosi.

I am glad to know the real story.  My time spent at church camps and youth outings when I was a kid were happy times.  In a crazy world that often seems like it is going to hell in a hurry, such memories give me some peace of mind.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Come Again?

According to this AP article published on, "a criminally insane killer...escaped during a mental hospital field trip to a county fair."

Now, perhaps I am dense, but I did not realize until today that the phrase "mental hospital field trip" even existed in the English lexicon, whether referring to trips outside of or into said mental hospital.

To make matters worse, the workers waited two hours to call the authorities after realizing the scumbag was gone.

I always knew that Washington was a liberal state. I never knew that by liberal they meant you could murder a woman, bury her in her own garden, get committed after being found criminally insane and still have the opportunity to hop on a bus and grab a corn dog and a funnel cake at the county fair.

I call BS.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

What The Heck Am I?

I admit that I am prejudiced. I prefer Diet Coke over Diet Pepsi, Pizza Hut over Dominos, and Ford over Chevrolet. When it comes to political theories, I much prefer living in a democracy (or republic - take your pick), and I have a strong distaste for socialism. However, I will drink a Diet Pepsi, eat Dominos, or drive a Chevy instead of dying of thirst, wasting away, or walking everywhere I have to go. On the other hand, I have no tolerance for socialism. I guess I'm a "socialism hater".

With all of the racism labels being plastered around lately, I got wondering what I really am. A racist is prejudiced due to race, and although I hate socialism, I am certainly not a socialist. I am neither a sociopath nor a sociologist.  Some might disagree, but I am also not (completely) anti-social.

I can't even start my own protest right now because I wouldn't be able to recognize the pejorative when my opponents hurl it at me (like the red herring - pun intended - that is the current round of racism charges).  I want to be able to stay on message and not get sidetracked, and I am quite sure that the socialist agenda is not going away any time soon in this country. 

So, I'd like to enlist your help in coming up with a novel but appropriate way to describe my aversion to socialism.  Please help me figure out what the heck I am.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Mystery Racist Of The Day

Before we reveal today's mystery racist, we'll give you an opportunity to guess who he is by giving you a glimpse at his record.

  • He once opined, "...just knowing that this black -- boy -- who grew up with just a loving mother and grandparents..."  (The dramatic pause was his.)
  • While running for Governor, he "was not a segregationist in 1970. But he did say things that the segregationists wanted to hear. He was opposed to busing. He was in favor of private schools. He said that he would invite segregationist governor George Wallace to come to Georgia to give a speech."
I don't know if Jimmy Carter is a racist, but you have to wonder.  How can a guy call our future president a "black --boy", be constantly criticized for being anti-semitic, and participate in the very acts that I believe he himself would hold up as acts of racism if applied to others? Covert racism, as perceived by the left is heinous, but overt racism is OK?

Tell me what is wrong with this picture.  Apparently I'm missing something.

I Like This Guy

What do you say, Brohica - can we make him a Regular Bro?

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

The Court of Public Opinion

Disclaimer: Regular Bros are not attorneys, and do not provide legal advice.  Anything vaguely resembling legal knowledge is purely opinion and conjecture and likely the result of watching too much Law and Order.

The font of all knowledge, Wikipedia, describes a spontaneous or excited utterance as an exception to the hearsay rule that is admissible under the Federal Rules of Evidence.  The theory is that such an exclamation is not subject to premeditation.  Another simlar exception to the hearsay rule is the present sense impression which is like the excited utterance but must be more contemporaneous with an event.  To have evidentiary value, a present sense impression must be stated within seconds or minutes of an event, while an excited utterence may occur days after an event, depending on the curcumstances.

Who cares, right?  I thought it might be interesting to compare the recent outbursts of some public figures to determine whether their statements would be admissible in court.

I believe Representative Joe Wilson's remark was a present sense impression.  His statement was contemporaneous with the President's lie. "Objection, argumentative!"  OK, Wilson's exclamation doesn't prove Obama was lying, it took a little more research to prove that.

President Obama's blurted opinion about Kanye West was probably an excited utterance.  It is admissible in court, although it is only opinion and not proof of any offense that West may have committed.

Kanye West's infamous mugging of Taylor Swift's acceptance speech at the MTV VMA's may have been a present sense impression, unless the theories that the incident was premeditated are true.  Whether or not his actions are admissible as evidence, they certainly prove President Obama's opinion that West is a jackass.

Regular Bros Court is adjourned. 


Right On, Mr. President!

No, not about healthcare or national defense or fiscal policy or anything trivial like that. I'm talking about his comments regarding the Kanye West-Taylor Swift-Beyonce-MTV Video Music Awards debacle this past weekend. For those whose radar this flew under, take a look:

Now today it has been reported that President Obama was overheard prior to an interview on CNBC calling West a "jackass." I have to admit that this is one of the few times that I agree with President Obama. Kanye West was a jackass. Wait - let me rephrase that: Kanye West is a jackass.

On a related note, I would like to introduce what just might be a Regular Bros exclusive. Though unconfirmed, I have happened upon a photo that appears to be Kanye West receiving his first batch of hate mail. Looks like he's got some reading to do.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

The Pelosi Express

Nancy Pelosi was against punishing Joe Wilson, before she was for it.  Pelosi first claimed she wanted to get past this issue and get back to work on heath care.  Later, Pelosi recognized that hopping off the punish Joe Wilson train too early would mean missing a terrific opportunity to whip the liberal political base into a frenzy.  So, Pelosi and friends now want Wilson to apologize before the assembled House of Representatives.  Meanwhile, Wilson maintains that he is done apologizing.

From deep in the fever swamp, Maureen Dowd claimed Representative Joe Wilson's famous outburst was motivated by racism. Dowd is a couple cars short of a freight train in my opinion.  I was previously unaware that Dowd had been accused of plagiarism this spring for borrowing liberally (no pun intended) from a blog while citicizing Pelosi's for reportedly "not opposing Republican policies on torture aggressively enough." Dowd reportedly apologized.  The same article comments that ironically it was Dowd that blew the whistle on Joe Biden's plagiarism in 1987.  I was not able to determine if Pelosi required Dowd to apologize to the National Press Club, or the Vice President for that matter.

Remember Joe the Plumber, who challenged then candidate Obama about redistribution of wealth?  He was transformed overnight into a folk hero, until his star faded.  Perhaps Pelosi, Dowd, and the rest of the liberal express don't realize that they are in danger of creating the very thing they hope to avoid.  The difference is that Joe the Politician has the experience to harness the publicity train that is his rising political celebrity.

Nobody likes a bully, and no one should have to go to the principal's office for a paddling after already getting rapped over the knuckles with a ruler.  I urge Pelosi, Dowd and the rest of the indignant left to keep it up.  I should point out that third rail, but I think I'm just going to sit back and enjoy the ride.  I just wonder if the crowd they are expecting will be waiting for them when that train pulls in the station.

We Don't Need No Leaders

I caught Howard Kurtz's interview of Sam Tanenhaus, editor of The New York Times Book Review, on CNN this morning.  Tanenhaus was touring his book on the death of conservatism, because of its lack of leadership.  I got the picture of a rudderless ship without a bona fide captain or crew. As Scooby Doo might say, "Rrrruh?"

I also read several accounts about the tax protest in Washington D.C. this weekend.  I saw estimates of from tens of thousands to millions of participants, skewed toward the lower number primarily by American MSM outlets.  Even splitting the difference, hundreds of thousands of tax protesters is an impressive number.  You may recall that there was an estimated 2000 protestors in DC on July 4th. One aspect that should be irrefutable is that the protesters are largely conservatives, at least fiscal conservatives.

Please remember three words, "We the people..."  Marginalizing this groundswell by this previously silent minority is a huge mistake whether you are a big spending democrat or republican.  Many in this country have forgotten that the people are the government, and obviously many others have concurrently remembered that fact.  Personally, I have never required a Political Action Committee, Acorn, or any "leader" to tell me what to vote for or help me pull a voting lever.

I am about to be the zillionth person to misquote The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, but it sums up my thoughts on this grass roots (not astroturf) movement.  FYI, Tanenhaus, conservatives, leaders, and protesters were not included in the original quote.

Tanenhaus: 'If you're the conservatives where are your leaders?'
Protesters: 'Leaders? We ain't got no leaders. We don't need no leaders! We don't have to show you any stinkin' leaders!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Politics of Knight - Part I

"People are dying, Alfred," says Bruce Wayne to his butler at a crucial juncture of The Dark Knight. "What would you have me do?"

"Endure, Master Wayne. They'll hate you for it, but that's the point of Batman. He can be the outcast. He can make the choice that no one else can make. The right choice."

Before I get into the true reasons for this post, allow me to establish a foundation. I will, from time-to-time, be using movies as a means to discuss our world and its politics. For about the last 20 years, I have been addicted to movies. It all started in the summer of '89 when my dad suggested we see the Batman movie everyone was talking about.

I remember arriving at the Capitol Theatre in downtown Aberdeen, the marquee lit up with gold and red bulbs. I gawked at the poster, a black and gold bat emblem that shined so metallic it looked as though it would be cold like steel if you touched it. My dad tried to find an employee - you could hear the early show in progress behind closed doors - but there was no box office attendant, no popcorn guy, no ticket taker...

They were all standing in the back of the theatre watching Batman take down the Joker. One-hundred and twenty-six minutes of celluloid later, I was officially addicted to movies.

Move it all along about a decade and I wrote a column for my college newspaper where all I did was talk movies and the worldviews they convey. I even wound up beginning an MFA Screenwriting program at Chapman University in Orange, CA. My reasons for leaving that program prior to completion will probably be fodder for another blog. But that'll be another day, and I have plenty to get to today.

So here I am - my first movie discussion for Regular Bros. It brings me full circle from the summer of '89 to last year's aforementioned smash hit, The Dark Knight.

Arguably the most thematically and tonally daring summer tentpole in decades, Knight shocked even the best box office prognosticators when it wound up selling over 74 million tickets in the United States alone and grossing over a billion dollars worldwide. The media was ablaze with stories about the dark film's success and the performance of the late Heath Ledger.

What went fairly unnoticed in mainstream circles was a small controversy that erupted over some of the film's content. Some were pleased and others were not so pleased by what they perceived as a subtext of neo-conservatism in the film; some bloggers boldly stated that the entire film was about George W. Bush's fall from grace after taking such a firm stance in the War on Terror.

As much as I would like to agree, I think these theorists have only partially reached the truth. There is a political message in Knight, but it is not that clear cut. It is not so specifically conservative, though it certainly leans that way.

No - what it clearly is analyzing are the ramifications -both wonderful and horrible - of drawing lines in the sand. Batman refuses moral relativism, standing firmly for what is right and steadfastly defending against that which is wrong. When he did this, he expected to inspire the people of Gotham that there was still hope. He did not, however, expect or know how to handle the people making him a villain for his refusal to bend to the whims of a madman, nor what that madman was willing to do to test his resolve.

"Oh, you. You just couldn't let me go, could you? This is what happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object. You are truly incorruptible, aren't you? Huh? You won't kill me out of some misplaced sense of self-righteousness. And I won't kill you because you're just too much fun. I think you and I are destined to do this forever."

- Joker, The Dark Knight


Friday, September 11, 2009

A Date Which Will Live In Infamy

"Yesterday, December 7, 1941—a date which will live in infamy—the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan." With those lines FDR ensured the memory of the roughly 2400 people that lost their lives in the attacks at Pearl Harbor down through the generations.

Almost 60 years later, the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, again shocked a nation. I believe this act of infamy should remain in our collective American memory in the same way that Peral Harbor has. Not that we should dwell on it, but that we should not lose sight of the implications for our country and remain vigilant.

Eight years later, I urge you to keep the memory of the 2900 lives that were lost, and keep their friends and family in you thoughts. More than that, I hope you will remember two words. Please repeat after me, "Never again!"

Thursday, September 10, 2009


I read today in a blurb from some left coast newspaper that it is not a good day to be a politician named Wilson. Given the people that are deriding Representative Wilson's outburst, I'm think that being named Wilson shouldn't be an honor, or at least worth a merit badge.

I am tired of mealy-mouthed politicians, a people in general who hide behind evasive rhetoric. It is refreshing to see someone expressing what many people, even within that chamber during the President's speech, were thinking.

My family has gotten mostly used to my periodic tirades. If my team makes a blunder, or I happen to catch part of a mainstream media "news" show, I am likely to blurt out something that I can't contain. My BS meter is typically set to detect trace amounts of that substance. I'm sure I'm not alone on that count.

So like me watching Matt Lauer or Chris Matthews, I think Representative Wilson just reacted when his BS meter went off last night. It certainly wasn't the first time a President's speech was heckled by members of the opposite political party. I suppose it shows a certain lack of decorum, but is it really that wrong? Given the choice of a congressional scandal about interrupting the president, or news describing yet another inappropriate relationship, I'll support the interruption all day long.

The important thing to me is, was Wilson right? Did Obama lie about health care for illegal aliens?

Illegal aliens have long been documented as part of the drain on the health care system. Contrary to popular belief, illegals who have no insurance, or cannot pay, have still received health care. Such ultimately free health care has been a net detriment to the overall state of health care facilities and health care in general.

The health care bill referred to by Obama, H.R. 3200, reportedly does not currently contain an exception to health care for illegals, or with regard to any person's citizenship status. Unless you can convince me that Obama is incorporating getting tough on illegal aliens with reforming health care, I'm with Representative Wilson on this one.

I call BS.

The Duke

They just don't build movie stars like they used to. For the record - the Regular Bros happen to be related to John Wayne via our paternal grandmother. Perhaps that's where our world view trickled down from.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

A Beary Familiar Story

People all over this country are familiar with the ever-increasing problem of unwanted interactions with wild animals. Animals are creatures of habit, so as they learn that easy meals and other creature comforts are accessible from around human habitation, they take advantage of those opportunities. The more humans encroach on formerly wild habitats and as animals interact with humans without negative consequences, the more dangerous the situation becomes. So we hear tales of bears swimming in pools, mountain lions prowling in suburbia, and so on.

How much like these creatures is man? We have a welfare system where people are work is no longer an incentive. We have generations living on the public dole. We have a lot of people who want the government to provide everything they want, just because they want it. Really, how different is that behavior from the wild animals described above?

A relative out west sent me the picture below of a bear in someone’s back yard via the Internet. It supposedly was taken in Montana. What do you suppose the bear has been nicknamed? I guessed Yogi, as that fictional bear’s occupation was snatching the picnic baskets of park visitors. Of course, I guess that technically that was Yogi’s job.

No, in honor of the re-distributor of wealth in chief, this bear has been named Bearack Obama.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Pursuing Our Own Happiness

"The universe was not made to our specifications," Thomas Sowell wrote in a recent column. "Nor were human beings. So there is nothing surprising in the fact that we are dissatisfied with many things at many times. The big question is whether we are prepared to follow any politician who claims to be able to 'solve' our 'problem.'"

No - we cannot reshape society or the universe to our specifications. Yet there seems to be a belief within our government that somehow we can. It is as though they have lost any belief, not to mention faith, in anything greater than themselves. Politicians pad their wallets by propagating the idea that any problem or force of nature we encounter must not only be caused by man, but must be solvable by man, as well. We the people are just as much to blame, for boy, oh boy, do we love our entitlements. Just don't remind us that we paid for them in the first place.

Case in point: on Facebook the other day I was asked to sign a petition boycotting Whole Foods. This boycott was inspired by an editorial written in the Wall Street Journal by John Mackey, CEO and co-founder of said grocery store chain. Their ire arose because he allegedly suggests that "healthcare is a commodity that only the rich, like him, deserve." Before I go too much farther, go ahead and quick give Mr. Mackey's Wall Street Journal editorial a read.

I'll wait.

Now can someone tell me which of his ideas are the bad ones? I suppose what has these folks most riled is where Mr. Mackey points out that a "...careful reading of both the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution will not reveal any intrinsic right to health care, food or shelter. That’s because there isn’t any. This 'right' has never existed in America."

I hate to break it to you, boycotters, but Mr. Mackey is right. And no amount of bleeding-heart liberalism is going to change that. The boycott organizers blast Whole Foods for using the "dollars of deceived progressives" to support "right-wing activities." Right-wing activities? Like supporting free market principles? That is not a right-wing activity; that is one of the fundamental strenghts of our Republic.

And these, I presume, would be the same free market principles that would actually allow a boycott to even have any measure of effectiveness? Just try and stage a boycott in Venezuela; probably not going to be very effective. Or try boycotting a healthcare provider in Canada; its called driving to America and paying cash.

Where Mackey knocks it out of the park is by boldly stating the truth that what is needed in healthcare reform is less government involvement, not more. Equip each individual to be better able to secure their own healthcare rather than just hand it to them. Gosh - doesn't that sound a whole lot like the concept in the piece of paper called the Declaration of Independence? You know, the one that talks about Governments deriving their powers from the governed in order to protect those citizens' right to pusue happiness. Please note that it is the right to pursue happiness; the government is not obliged to make sure that you are actually happy.

Life is tough. Get a helmet.

I believe it is my responsibility - mine - to ensure that my family is provided for. I believe that I should only have to hand over those rights the Government absolutely needs in order to protect my ability to provide for my family and pursue its happiness.

Over two-hundred years ago Alexis de Tocqueville travelled from France to study the young, upstart country known as the United States of America. He said then: "The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public's money."

Suffice it to say, I did not sign the peition.