Saturday, June 03, 2006

It is Official

It is official. I have moved to Wordpress. I will keep my archives here for the time being (until I figure out how to move them), but all my new posts will be at the new blog. So, change your blogrolls and come visit me there! It's a nice place, you'll like it!

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Making a Move

I just wanted to let all my readers know that I have made the move to another blog host. I am still working out some things, but it's pretty much up and running, so come visit me at my new place:

A Rose By Any Other Name at Wordpress.

I will be keeping the old posts here for the time being and I still have to figure out blogrolls and TTLB and my place in the Ecosystem, but I think my new site is looking pretty good!

I've increased the size of the it...come on, you know you want to... it's a nice site...come see me!

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Let Them Do Their Job

Can people please stop speculating and accusing the Marines of "cold blooded murder" and let the investigators do their jobs? I am so tired of hearing Murtha and the MSM claim that the Marines did this or did that and the civilians were completely innocent when Haditha was a hot bed of al Qaeda. At the moment, no one in the media knows anything and I'm getting tired of hearing the crap and blatant lies from the MSM and a completely disloyal ex-Marine who should be ashamed of himself! IF they committed a crime then they should be punished, but can the investigation please be finished before the stone throwing commences?!

I know I'm not the only one fed up with the "guilty until proven innocent" mentality of the left and the MSM:

Michelle Malkin
Right Wing Nut House
Flopping Aces
Blue Crab Boulevard
Sister Toldjah
Captain's Quarters

UPDATE: Frau Budgie at Red Hot Cuppa Politics has a link to an interview with a Marine who was there that fateful day, but was injured before "the massacre" and said he had not witnessed any of the things the MSM is claiming.

UPDATE #2: (06/01/06) What the crap is this?!
WASHINGTON - A U.S. military investigation into actions taken following a deadly incident in western Iraq will conclude that some officers gave false testimony to their superiors, The Washington Post reported. And a top U.S. commander in Iraq announced new core values training on moral and ethical standards for U.S. troops.AP
"Will conclude" let's see does that mean they don't know? Yup, I'm pretty sure that's what it means and that this is more speculation! And yet, they are reporting it as FACT. Grrr!!

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Vets for Freedom

Many of us support our troops and their mission because we believe that what they are doing is right. We also believe that the MSM is not providing a true picture of what is happening in Iraq. And there is one more belief...that our leaders are not handling the Global War on Terror well because of their constant need to straddle the public opinion fence.

Well, we are not the only ones to feel this way. There is a grassroots movement of Veterans of the GWOT who have fought either in Afghanistan or Iraq or both and they are just as tired of the misrepresentation and misinterpretation of all that is going on. They are the Vets for Freedom and I urge you to visit their website. One of the founders, Owen West, recently wrote the following Op-Ed for the New York Times. (and because I didn't want anyone to have to register if they didn't want to, I've included the entire Op-Ed)
NEITHER party expected for the war the magnitude or the duration which it has already attained. Neither anticipated that the cause of the conflict might cease with or even before the conflict itself should cease."

So said Abraham Lincoln in his second inaugural address, describing a war that put 11 percent of our citizens in uniform and had by that point killed nearly one of out every seven soldiers. That his words are relevant again now is a troubling indicator of our national endurance.

We are at the outset of a long war, and not just in Iraq. Yet it is being led politically by the short-sighted, from both sides of the aisle. The deterioration of American support for the mission in Iraq is indicative not so much of our military conduct there, where real gains are coming slowly but steadily, but of chaotic leadership.

Somehow Operation Iraqi Freedom, not a large war by America's historical standards, has blossomed into a crisis of expectations that threatens our ability to react to future threats with a fist instead of five fingers. Instead of rallying we are squabbling, even as the slow fuse burns.

One party is overly sanguine, unwilling to acknowledge its errors. The other is overly maudlin, unable to forgive the same. The Bush administration seeks to insulate the public from the reality of war, placing its burden on the few. The press has tried to fill that gap by exposing the raw brutality of the insurgency; but it has often done so without context, leaving a clear implication that we can never win.

In the past, the American public could turn to its sons for martial perspective. Soldiers have historically been perhaps the country's truest reflection, a socio-economic cross-section borne from common ideals. The problem is, this war is not being fought by World War II's citizen-soldiers. Nor is it fought by Vietnam's draftees. Its wages are paid by a small cadre of volunteers that composes about one-tenth of 1 percent of the population — America's warrior class.

The insular nature of this group — and a war that has spiraled into politicization — has left the Americans disconnected and confused. It's as if they have been invited into the owner's box to settle a first-quarter disagreement on the coach's play-calling. Not only are they unprepared to talk play selection, most have never even seen a football game.

This confusion, in turn, affects our warriors, who are frustrated by the country's lack of cohesion and the depiction of their war. Iraq hasn't been easy on the military, either. But the strength of our warriors is their ability to adapt.

First, in battle you move forward from where you are, not where you want to be. No one was more surprised that Saddam Hussein had no weapons of mass destruction than the soldiers who rolled into Iraq in full chemical protective gear. But it is time for the rest of the country to do what the military was forced to: get over it.

If we can put 2003's debates behind us, there is a swath of common ground on which to focus. Both Republicans and Democrats agree we cannot lose Iraq. The general insurgency in Iraq imperils our national interest and the hardcore insurgents are our mortal enemies. Talking of troop reductions is to lose sight of the goal.

Second, America's conscience is one of its greatest strengths. But self-flagellation, especially in the early stages of a war against an enemy whose worldview is uncompromising, is absolutely hazardous. Three years gone and Iraq's most famous soldiers are Jessica Lynch and Lynndie England, a victim and a criminal, respectively. Abu Ghraib remains the most famous battle of the war.

Soldiers are sick of apologizing for a sliver of malcontents who are not at all representative of the new breed. But they are also sick of being pitied. Our warriors are the hunters, not the hunted, and we should celebrate them as we did in the past, for while our tastes have changed, warfare — and the need to cultivate national guardians — has not. As Kipling wrote, "The strength of the pack is the wolf."

Finally, today's debates are not high-spirited so much as mean-spirited. To allow polarizing forces to dominate the argument by insinuating false motives on one side or a lack of patriotism on the other is to obscure long-term security decisions that have to be made now.

We are clashing with an enemy who has been at war with us in one form or another for two decades. Our military response may take decades more. We have crossed several rivers and the nation is hoping that ahead lie streams. But if they are oceans, we should heed Lincoln's call: "With malice toward none, with charity for all ... let us strive on to finish the work we are in."

Owen West, a reserve Marine major who served in Iraq, is the founder of Vets for Freedom.

NY Times Op-Ed

Monday, May 29, 2006

God and Country


The soldier stood and faced his God,
Which must always come to pass.
He hoped his shoes were shining,
Just as brightly as his brass.

"Step forward now, you soldier,
How shall I deal with you?
Have you always turned the other cheek?
To My Church have you been true?"

The soldier squared his shoulders and said,
"No, Lord, I guess I ain't.
Because those of us who carry guns,
Can't always be a saint.

I've had to work most Sundays,
And at times my talk was tough.
And sometimes I've been violent,
Because the world is awfully rough.

But, I never took a penny,
That wasn't mine to keep...
Though I worked a lot of overtime,
When the bills got just too steep.

And I never passed a cry for help,
Though at times I shook with fear.
And sometimes, God, forgive me,
I've wept unmanly tears.

I know I don't deserve a place,
Among the people here.
They never wanted me around,
Except to calm their fears.

If you've a place for me here, Lord,
It needn't be so grand.
I never expected or had too much,
But if you don't, I'll understand."

There was a silence all around the throne,
Where the saints had often trod.
As the soldier waited quietly,
For the judgment of his God.

"Step forward now, you soldier,
You've borne your burdens well.
Walk peacefully on Heaven's streets,
You've done your time in Hell."

Author unknown.
Thank you, Bill of Small Town Veteran for posting this...I have shamelessly swiped it to share with others!

Do Not Weep

Do Not Stand At My Grave and Weep
Mary Frye (1932)

Do not stand at my grave and weep,
I am not there, I do not sleep.

I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glint on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the gentle autumn rain.

When you wake in the morning hush,
I am the swift, uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circling flight.
I am the soft starlight at night.

Do not stand at my grave and weep.
I am not there, I do not sleep.
Do not stand at my grave and cry.
I am not there, I did not die!

Our loved ones do not truly leave us, for as long as we remember them, they are in our hearts and part of our souls. Mourn the loss, honor the sacrifice, but know that they live on.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

What Memorial Day Means

This is a moving post by not only a military veteran, but a law enforcement officer as well. The Old Ranter shares just what Memorial Day means to him.
Memorial Day should be a time of reflection, remembering those who have gone before us, paying the ultimate sacrifice for freedom, their lives. Through the course of the history of America, people have died so that others may be free.

In many far off lands, American’s have laid down their lives so that the spark that makes this country what it is, lives on, passed on to our children, standing the test of time.

Today, our country is engaged in a battle against terrorism, its military standing in places named, Baghdad, Kabul and Kandahar, names from the news, now sacred with the blood and lives of its men and women who have died in the name of freedom.

The war on terrorism is difficult for some to understand, we are not facing an army, we are facing people who hide and kill without thought. We have learned the painful lesson that an airplane can be used as a Weapon of Mass Destruction, taking the lives of thousands in the blink of an eye, destroying a family and changing the landscape of a city forever more.

The war has taught us new terms of death and devastation, like, IED, and Suicide Bomber, we have learned how cowards hidden from view can take the lives of America’s sons and daughters. We learn more every day how a terrorist can kill and the pain and anguish that accompanies each lesson.

The war on terrorism has touched many families, some that will never be the same, this is what we need to remember this weekend, this and phrases like, D-Day, Normandy, Market Garden, The Battle of the Buldge, A Shu Valley, Khe San, the Korean war, and more.

This is what we must reflect upon, this and more, not the marketing nightmare of retail hoping to cash in on a three-day weekend. Teach your children the truth, teach them what freedom means and explain what this country has paid to insure they live free.

I can think of no better prayer than this Memorial Day Prayer, by Rev. Dick Kozelka (ret), which can be found on U.S. Memorial Day History and Information site.
The U.S. Memorial Day History and Information site is where I found the wonderful poems that I have posted in honor of Memorial Day. I urge you to check out the site because there are some very moving speeches, articles, poems and pictures! Remember, this is not just a 3-day has a purpose and that is to honor the men and women who have laid down their lives for us on the battlefield for freedom!

h/t: CJ at A Soldier's Perspective

Saturday, May 27, 2006

A Mother's Loss

To Mrs. Bixby, Boston Massachusetts

Dear Madam

I have been shown in the files of the War Department a statement of the Adjutant General of Massachusetts that you are the mother of five sons who have died gloriously in the field of battle. I feel how weak and fruitless must be any word of mine which should attempt to beguile you from the grief of a loss so overwhelming. But I cannot refrain from tendering you the consolation that may be found in the thanks of the republic they died to save. I pray that our Heavenly Father may assuage the anguish of your bereavement, and leave you only the cherished memory of the loved and lost, and the solemn pride that must be yours to have laid so costly a sacrifice upon the alter of freedom.

Yours very sincerely and respectfully,

Abraham Lincoln

I Stand Before You

I Stand Before You
©2001 Roger J. Robicheau (Sp 5, US Army)
The Poetic Plumber

I stand before you all today
But not one eye can see my way

My time arrived, to leave this earth
A fact so planned, to every birth

It happened where I had to go
My torch for life was so aglow

I transferred while in uniform
Protecting freedom, through a storm

Should I resent I died for you
Not on my life, red white and blue

Please help my family through each day
Tell all my friends, try not to stray

And of the country I did love
Do think of me, through God above

Your memories, brought forth this day
Send love to us, who could not stay

Photo: Ponders
An anonymous member of the Armed Services looking over the Arlington National Cemetery, March 2001.
© 2001 Corey Rehberg,

Friday, May 26, 2006

In Honor of Memorial Day

By Mark A. Wright, HMC(SS)
22 June, 2000

I first saw him on a park bench
I've seen him every day
Sitting in a shady grove
Where my children come to play
Sometimes he feeds the birds and squirrels
Or whittles little toys
Sometimes he just sits and smiles
At the laughing girls and boys
And I never paid him any mind
'Till one day just this year
I noticed that he wore a frown
And on his cheek ... a tear.

Well I asked him why he seemed so down
He looked up, began to say
I lost half my friends 60 years ago today
He told me of the terror
As he fought to reach dry land
By the time the beachhead was secure
Half his friends lay in the sand

That was just in one long day
He fought on for 4 years more
And the 60 years from then to now
Have not dimmed His sights of war

He said they have reunions
Just to keep in touch and share
And for each comrade who has gone on
They leave an empty chair

Well, His park bench has been empty now
About 6 months or so
And if I'd never took the time
Then I never would've known
That sitting on that simple bench
With bread crumbs and little toys
Was a man who gave his all
To guarantee my daily joys

So give thanks to all the men and women
Who're still here or have gone before
And made the highest sacrifice
In both Peace time and in War
Because they bought our freedom
Paid their own blood, sweat, and tears
Then endured the heartache of those empty chairs
For all these years

So please do not ignore them
Or speed by without a care
'Cause you never know
When you might pass by
A hero, unaware.

Particularly Apt Quote

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat."
Theodore Roosevelt
In response to the twisted way in which the Bush/Blair conference has been portrayed in the MSM both print and television. Hey, you idiot reporters, the conference was not about the mistakes, it was about the progress! A man with integrity admits that mistakes may have been made, but he does not dwell on them, he learns from them and he goes on!

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Twisted Thinking Redux

I posted this originally in mid-November 2005, in regards to the Michael Newdow escapades. Seems not much has changed since then, only now it's the atheist versus the Mt. Soledad cross. Why is it so important for this small minority of people with an unreasonable fear of anything iconically religious to abolish all things traditional just because it may have a cross or the word "God" or some other symbol that could possibly be construed as religious in any way. I wonder what it is they fear so much they feel the need to abolish any appearance of it?!

The ACLU is on a crusade (and yes, I used that word deliberately) to banish religion as completely as they can from our everyday lives. No religious symbols on or around government buildings or public schools. No references to religion in those places either. And why is this? Because they believe that the First Amendment specifically says that there should not be anything religious within the government. Yes, that dreaded "separation of church and state" club that they use to beat over the heads of US citizens or any city, business, or school that would dare to show religious symbols or icons in any public way.

Here is the First Amendment:
Amendment I - Freedom of Religion, Press, Expression Ratified 12/15/1791.

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."
Now, I'm not a historian or a constitutional law professor, but I'm pretty sure that I understand history and the way I read this is that Congress cannot set up a religion and then force citizens, by law, to worship it. This goes back to Henry VIII. When he did not get his annullment he broke with the Pope, created the (Protestant) National Church of England, and forced that religion on the citizenry, thereby banning Catholicism from England. Since Catholicism was banned, Henry VIII and the nobles decided they wanted the land that the monastaries were on, so they took those as well.

Now, back to the present. I certainly don't remember Congress creating and enforcing a religion on me. Do you? Yes, there is the phrase "In God We Trust" on our money (since 1864), but it is not a specified Catholic, Protestant, Muslim, Jewish, Lutheran, Baptist, Hindu, Buddist, or any other organized religion's god.

The ACLU would have you believe that the use of the word "God", in any respect, in any public building, is wrong and unconstitutional. Okay, then, shall we destroy all the historical buildings across the country because the cornerstone, mantel, lintel, facade, stain glass window, statue, floor medallion, city seal, et al show the word "God" or any other religious figure? Shall we then change the names of cities such as Los Cruces (the crosses), Corpus Cristi (body of Christ), Bethlehem, Sacrmento (sacrament), Los Angeles (the Angels), etc. because they refer to a religious belief? When will the ACLU stop?

Another thing. Do we not live in a country where majority rules? This is a democracy, right? Why is it that when 91% of the population of the United States believes in a god, we must bow to the wishes of the other 9%? I personally know professed atheists who could care less if "In God We Trust" is on money, or anywhere for that matter. If the above precepts are true, then why are we, as a society, allowing the ACLU and people like Michael Newdow to dictate if, how, or where historical symbols and icons can be shown and whether or not we can say "God" in public? We must ban together and fight back!

Acknowldgements: Painting called "Knowledge" in the North Hall of the Library of Congress from the website Scripture in Washington
Also sited: Human Events Online, US Department of the Treasury, Renaissance Faire and US Constitution

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Tuesday, May 23, 2006


I have contacted my senators on several occasions and never received an answer. I thought I would try again one more time and not only did I get an answer, I got it in the same day! This is what one of my senators has to say about immigration:
May 23, 2006

Dear Anna:

Thank you for contacting me regarding illegal immigration. I agree that illegal immigration is a very serious problem and appreciate knowing your views.

Currently, there are approximately 11 million undocumented immigrants in the United States, with close to 1 million more arriving every year. Yet, our current immigration system is broken. It is a system that is not good for American security, particularly during our fight to combat international terrorism. It is not good for American workers and businesses. And, it is not good for the immigrants, themselves.

To tackle this problem, we must have a comprehensive immigration plan that toughens our borders, documents illegal immigrants, and provides for American labor needs. On March 28, 2006, the Senate Judiciary Committee, of which I am a member, passed immigration legislation out of Committee. The legislation is the first step toward comprehensive immigration reform. I voted in favor of the bill, which would secure our southern border by providing for an additional 12,000 border patrol agents, increased use of technology, and a fence along portions of the border. The bill also includes a guest worker program limited to approximately 400,000 people per year and a way to document and provide legal status for immigrants already here. Currently, the Senate is working on reaching an agreement on immigration reform legislation.

Again, thank you for contacting me. If you have any additional concerns, please feel free to contact me anytime.

Very respectfully yours,
United States Senator
Though I'm not sure his answer makes me feel completely reassured, but at least the legislation he's supporting would put an additional 12,000 guards on the border and it would only allow 8 million "guest workers" in over the next 20 years. That is much better than s.2611 which would allow 103 million of them into the US within the next 20 years and cause the downfall of our economy!

There is Good News

Sheile School-Back to School in Style

MOSUL, Iraq – A newly constructed school located in the center of Dahuk will provide service to approximately 840 students and 36 teachers.

This new two-story complex consists of a 12-room classroom school with a detached exterior lavatory building, a play-yard and a generator building; all of which is surrounded by a three-meter high perimeter wall.

The exterior and interior walls are of masonry construction with a concrete super structure and terrazzo tile flooring. The exterior wall finishes are cut stone and plaster.

“The architectural design and material selection was made by a local Iraqi engineer in coordination with the Director General of Education and then provided to the Dahuk Residence Office,” said Joshua Adekanbi, Dahuk resident engineer, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

The DG of Education uses a standard primary school design with the same floor plan. Since the plans are recycled, varied exterior architectural elements are chosen for each school.

This $460,000 project was funded by the Iraqi Relief and Reconstruction Fund and built by a local Iraqi construction company. Of the 317 IRRF-funded school projects in the northern region of Iraq , 315 are complete and two are in progress.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers participated as the Contracting and Construction Management and Quality Assurance of the over-all project.
Multi-National Force Iraq
Despite what you may read in the MSM or see on the alphabet soup of news channels, there is good news coming out of Iraq. This is but one story. I will continue to share the good news because it is just as important, if not more so than the slanted bad news views the MSM feeds us on a minute-by-minute basis!

Milbloggers on FOX

"Freedom is the sure possession of those alone who have the courage to defend it."
I went to check out Fuzzilicious Thinking and what do I find? Fuzzy, along with many other Milbloggers, have been prominently featured on FOX News! She seems a little embarrassed by the whole thing, but I am proud of her and our other Milblogging friends! It's about time someone paid some national attention to them! A huge thank you to Andi of Andi's World for setting up the first Milblog conference that got this story rolling.

Here's a bit of the article, but it's a long one, so I encourage you to go read the whole thing even though a certain left-wing cretin is mentioned as well!
As the war in Iraq and the national debate over it continue, military-themed American bloggers have been voicing their support for U.S. troops and, in most cases, the war itself.

"We're not only fighting a physical war, we're fighting an information war as well," said "Andi C.," organizer of the first annual MilBlog Conference, which took place last month in Washington.

"The Bush administration and the DoD [Department of Defense] have not been very effective in the information war," explained Andi C., who, like many "milbloggers," prefers not to use her full name. "Milblogs have been doing the heavy lifting. Both entities could learn a thing or two from milbloggers."
FOX News
Some of the other big names involved in the Milblog Conference and the Fox News article are Mudville Gazette, Dadmanly, Threats Watch, Blackfive, Argghhh!-The Donovan, The Indepundit and of course, the author, Michael Lawhorn's blog Kosovo Dad. You are all awesome!

Please do your part and get the good news out there. We all know that the MSM has the bad news covered, but there are stories of strength, honor and valor that are not being shared and they should be!

Thank You!

For the past several days I have been getting a lot of traffic. I know that some is simply people Googling the Shakespeare quote, but a lot more are readers and I cannot thank you all enough for reading my blog! When I started blogging last year, it was simply a way to get my views out there without boring family and friends to tears! I never realized there would be so many other bloggers that would have similar views and how much enjoyment I would get out of this. I have found out just how strong my feelings are on politics, patriotism and our military and I just want to thank you all!

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Here Fishy, Fishy...

Blog Fishing for fun, hits and links!

Platypus Society started the game and you can go to Blue Star Chronicles, Random Yak or Third World County to find out more.

We all know how obsessed we are about our sitemeters and technorati and TTLB hits, so have some fun with it!

Here fishy, fishy...

Saturday, May 20, 2006

English 101

I was born in California and as a child, watched Sesame Street (a new show at the time) which was pretty much half in English and half in Spanish. In fact, I could count higher in Spanish than I could in English as a child. About half our neighborhood was of Latino descent and a lot of the kids were my friends. Today, I have two teenage daughters and they will both be in high school next year. My youngest is going to take Spanish as her foreign language and I've asked her to bring her books home so I could learn it with her. Obviously, I have no problem with Spanish or speaking Spanish. Having said that, this is the United States of America and the predominate language for the last 225 plus years, has been and still is English. Making English the official National Language makes sense.

What I would like to know, Mr. Reid, how does that make me racist? I could not believe it when he said that! No one said Spanish, Italian, French, Chinese, Japanese, Dutch, Yiddish, Croatian, Russian, German and so on and so on could not be spoken, we would merely like English to be recognized as the National Language! Nathan Tabor put it this way:
Be afraid folks. Be very afraid. Thursday’s travesty on the Senate floor is just one more example of Democrats kowtowing to special interest groups, in yesterday’s case, illegal immigrants.

Senator Jame Inhofe (R-OK) proposed an amendment to the overhaul of a new immigration bill that would declare English as our national language.

Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid declared that Inhofe’s proposed amendment "…is directed at people who speak Spanish," an interesting charge in light of the fact that Inhofe himself is fluent in Spanish. Reid’s statement, however, totally ignores the thousands of Chinese sneaking into the West Coast or the tens of thousands of Eastern Europeans who operate in the underground economy of illegal workers from New York to Chicago. When in doubt, Harry, play the race card.
The Conservative Voice
What's the matter Harry, are you afraid that by uniting everyone with a common language, thus perpetuating our "melting pot" reputation, will deprive you of votes somehow? No, you can do that all on your own with your crazy ideas! Here is how my Senators voted:
Ohio: DeWine (R-OH), Yea Voinovich (R-OH), Yea
How did your Senators vote? Find out here: Senate Roll Call Vote on the Salazar Amendment

President Bush who was the governor of Texas (where Spanish is spoken predominately along the border towns and more) and where he, as a state leader, often communicated with his fellow Texans in Spanish, stated that English should be learned by all immigrants, so that they can assimilate into our society. Does that make him racist? Not to my mind.

Charles Krauthammer, who is French Canadian by birth, reminds us that dual languages really don't work and can actually cause strife, even rioting, as it did in the 60s. I see dual languages as creating an "us and them" mentality instead of uniting people in one language. I think there is enough strife in our country right now, why add to it by making English and Spanish required learning for new immigrants?

Update: Mark (thank you Mark!) pointed out that I had sited the Salazar Amendment instead of the Inhofe Amendment which was more strongly worded and was passed by a much wider margin. See how your Senator voted: Senate Roll Call Vote On Inhofe Amendment

Tags: English, Immigrants, assimilation, Nathan Tabor.

Friday, May 19, 2006

Armed Forces Day

In case you didn't know it, Saturday is Armed Forces Day. This day was set aside in 1950 as a day to remember and thank our services members currently serving in the United States Armed Forces, thus making it different from Veteran's Day. So, for those of you who truly support and appreciate our troops, this is an official day to thank them, though you should and probably already do thank them every time you see them!

"Armed Forces Day, Saturday, May 20, 1950, marks the first combined demonstration by America's defense team of its progress, under the National Security Act, towards the goal of readiness for any eventuality. It is the first parade of preparedness by the unified forces of our land, sea, and air defense."
Former Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson
Note the day and date of the first Armed Forces Day!
"It is fitting and proper that we devote one day each year to paying special tribute to those whose constancy and courage constitute one of the bulwarks guarding the freedom of this nation and the peace of the free world."
President Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1953

"Today let us, as Americans, honor the American fighting man. For it is he--the soldier, the sailor, the Airman, the Marine--who has fought to preserve freedom. It is his valor that has given renewed hope to the free world that by working together in discipline and faith our ideals of freedom will always prevail."
Admiral Forrest P. Sherman

"We cannot, in this day of exploding world competition on all fronts, be content to maintain the status quo. We must also realize that the preservation of our freedom in the years ahead may require greater sacrifices from us than those made by Americans who have walked before us."
General Nathan F. Twining, 1960
Former Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff

"...Word to the Nation: Guard zealously your right to serve in the Armed Forces, for without them, there will be no other rights to guard."
President John F. Kennedy, 1962

"... Our Servicemen and women are serving throughout the world as guardians of peace--many of them away from their homes, their friends and their families. They are visible evidence of our determination to meet any threat to the peace with measured strength and high resolve. They are also evidence of a harsh but inescapable truth--that the survival of freedom requires great cost and commitment, and great personal sacrifice."
President John F. Kennedy, 1963

Defense Link
So, whenever and wherever you see someone in uniform, shake their hand and thank them because without them we would not be free!

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

TR Quote

"I believe in nationalism as the absolute prerequisite to internationalism. I believe in patriotism as the absolute prerequisite to the larger Americanism. I believe in Americanism because unless our people are good Americans first, America can accomplish little or nothing worth accomplishing for the good of the world as a whole."

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

She Did What She Had To Do

I love to read the soldiers' stories at the US Army website (as well as the stories on all our military websites). This one I had to share.

Spc. Maria C. Flores-Sanz earned the Army Commendation Medal with valor device after driving two Soldiers in her vehicle to safety, and then returning to the scene of a July 3 terrorist attack to help evacuate other injured Soldiers.

Flores-Sanz was part of a three-vehicle convoy traveling from Baghdad International Airport to central Baghdad, when the vehicles were attacked simultaneously by a rocket-propelled grenade shot from a rooftop and an improvised explosive device that was remote-detonated on the ground. Amidst the smoke and confusion, Flores-Sanz drove the two passengers of her vehicle to safety and later returned to the attack site to help evacuate the wounded soldiers.

"I'm not a hero, but I did what I had to do," she said.

"She was on the ball," said Sgt. 1st Class Tracy Randall, the assistant inspector general with the 1st Armor Division, who was a passenger in her vehicle July 3. "She didn't panic, she knew exactly what to do."

Shortly after the event, Flores-Sanz re-enlisted in the Army on Aug. 5. She had deployed with 1st Armored Division to Baghdad in May.

"I was nervous about going, but I was mentally prepared," she said. "I was ready to do my duty."
U.S. Army Soldier Stories
There are many heros in this war on terror and I don't know why her story is more special than any another, except that her comment really resonanted with me, "I did what I had to do." This is a comment I've made many times over the years though it never applied to a situation anywhere near as harrowing as she found herself. But it is a way of thinking and behaving that I could relate to. When a particular situation or just life in general gets rough, you just do what you have to do to get through and move on. And Spc. Maria C. Flores-Sanz did just that and more when she re-enlisted. She is an inspiration.

Monday, May 15, 2006

An Interesting Letter

This morning I was checking my email as usual and received my daily serving of The Conservative Voice. In this particular issue, I spotted an article entitled "An Open Letter to America About Bad Immigration Policy" and it caught my attention. This letter, written by Steven Voigt, hit a lot of the same issues that I have with this entire immigration issue. And like Voigt, I don't think the President's speech tonight is going to fix it.
Dear Fellow Americans,
On the eve of the President’s speech on illegal immigration and facing the imminent reincarnation of the Senate’s three-tiered amnesty proposal, I write to you again on this important issue. Illegal immigration is indeed the topic of the day, but illegal immigration is but a symptom of the greater issue we face – a crisis of failed leadership on both sides of the aisle in the Senate.
My disgust with our political "leaders" has reached new highs. I have tried to contact my Senators and have never received a response. I thought I was one of the people who put them in office and they were supposed to work for me...isn't this insubordination?
Today, through nothing we have done except to trust in the ballot box, we find ourselves betrayed – and mired in much the same spot as we stood several years ago, with dark clouds shrouding the horizon that we once gazed on with such promise. Our optimism of years past is muted, and we are left with frustration and disappointment in our leaders.

Friends, mediocrity may be fine in some parts of the world – but not here in America. Not in business. Not in schools. Not in science. Not in technology. Not in our values. And mediocrity shouldn’t be tolerated in government, either. We are America. We expect better. We deserve the best.
I try to be optimistic, I really do. I want to believe that our politicians will realize they are failing and start listening, but sometimes it's so difficult. They only ever seem to be after power and have forgotten why they are in Washington serve the people.
I write today to tell you that the bright horizon does remain; it is merely veiled behind a few dark clouds. But you have done nothing to dim this nation’s future. Your good hearts still fuel the fires of this nation’s hope, and they will forevermore. The dreams remain, but every leader on both sides of the aisle in the Senate must share the blame for failing to lead us on the bright path to the horizon. They have failed and abused our trust.

With the illegal alien crisis, the Senate continues to defy the will of the American people. Simply put, our Senators lack the guts to secure the border, to punish businesses that employ foreigners illegally, to uphold and enforce the rule of law and immigration procedures, and to reject outright any reward of amnesty for those who choose to evade legal processes. Instead, they seem only capable of self- aggrandizing speeches and pandering slogans that feed their egos.

Sadly, our President also seems to be on the wrong side of this issue, and no amount of feel-good phraseology in his Monday night speech will lessen this betrayal of the American mandate. Apparently, the only leaders who stand opposed to bad policy on illegal aliens are many members of the House of Representatives, who understand – rightly – that border security must be a priority.
Voigt points to one of the really awful effects giving amnesty to illegal immigrants will have on us, our working class and our economy. It depicts a frightening future if our politicians don't start listening to us.
This past Friday as I walked to work in Center City Philadelphia and passed two construction sites, I considered how the ineptitude of our leaders with the illegal alien crisis will impact America. As I approached my office building, to my left, workers in harnesses bolted steel beams together on the city’s next skyscraper. After I turned to the right and walked one block, I passed bulldozers and a second hard hat crew laying new asphalt on a road in William Penn’s grid. These men and women would be a little embarrassed to hear it, and they would never agree with their humble natures, but they are in truth all heroes. Nobles all, these individuals, along with most of us, clock in every day of every week to put bread on the table for their families, and in so doing, represent what is best in America.

In recent weeks, as the illegal alien crisis has come to the fore, time and again, I listened to wealthy, elite, out-of-touch Capitol Hill politicians pay lip service to these construction workers and others in the middle class, and then in the next breath, cater to the illegal aliens who have subverted our immigration laws.

Believe me when I tell you, if the politicians on Capitol Hill award amnesty to the millions of illegal aliens who have flouted our laws, in only a few short years those construction workers that I passed on my way to my office – individuals who are raising families with solid wage jobs – will be replaced by cheap, exploitable labor from a bloated labor pool, with all of the added profit going into the pockets of only a handful of corporate fat cats. Experts and commentators have documented repeated instances of such displacement and depressed wages in regions where illegal immigration is particularly excessive, and this will be the entirety of America if the Senate has its way.
He urges us to keep up the efforts to keep our dreams alive while doing whatever we can to make our politicians open their eyes and their ears and stop worrying about the vote. After all, illegal immigrants aren't supposed to have a vote...they are illegal!
While I pray for our leaders to turn their gaze back to the American people, the longer we tarry on this wayward path with failed leadership, the more I am beginning to believe that it is we who must turn our gaze from them.

I implore you, however, to never give up on our efforts. Since our leaders are failing us, we must redouble our efforts to make them listen. Please continue to call and email your Senators and Representatives and tell them that amnesty is wrong and border security must be a priority.

May God bless all of you and may God bless America.
Steven T. Voigt
Executive Director
Foundations of Law PAC
Let's build that wall (electrified fence that is solar or wind powered could work), let's prosecute those industries that use illegal immigrants even if it means paying more for that produce or that shirt. Our security and our way of life are much more important than a 49 cent head of lettuce.

Political cartoon from Iowa Presidential Watch.
Letter in its entirety can be found at The Conservative Voice.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Mother's Day

Thank You Mom

In these busy, hectic lives we lead
too often we forget
to be thankful to the person
to whom we owe our greatest debt.

Thank you Mom for the words you spoke
while catching tears that I was crying;
"Even though you did not win the race,
I'm so proud of you for trying."

Thank you Mom for open arms
that always chased away my fear
for the loving embrace of a mother
can make the whole world disappear.

Thank you Mom for the many tears
that you shed on my behalf
and for pretending that my silly jokes
always somehow made you laugh.

Thank you Mom for the guidance
through all my years of growing,
somehow molding the way I'd live my life
without my ever knowing.

Thank you Mom for your patience
and understanding all along,
those years I thought I was always right
and that you were always wrong.

Thank you Mom for teaching me
the most valuable lesson I would learn;
that you can love someone with everything
and expect nothing in return.

I don't know where my brother found this poem or who wrote it, but I had to share it with you all today. Sounds just like my it sounds like yours, too!
Happy Mother's Day!

Friday, May 12, 2006

Dedicated to My Mom

In The Garden

I come to the garden alone
While the dew is still on the roses
And the voice I hear, falling on my ear
The Son of God discloses

And He walks with me
And He talks with me
And He tells me I am His own
And the joy we share as we tarry there
None other has ever known

He speaks and the sound of His voice
Is so sweet the birds hush their singing
And the melody that He gave to me
Within my heart is ringing

And He walks with me
And He talks with me
And He tells me I am His own
And the joy we share as we tarry there
None other has ever known

I'd stay in the garden with Him
'Tho the night around me be falling
But He bids me go; through the voice of woe
His voice to me is calling

And He walks with me
And He talks with me
And He tells me I am His own
And the joy we share as we tarry there
None other has ever known.

Hymn: In the Garden by Charles Austin Miles, depicts Mary Magdalene's visit to the garden where she finds the resurrected Jesus.

Thursday, May 11, 2006


Another busy day, but I saw this quote and had to share it.

"So much attention is paid to the aggressive sins, such as violence and cruelty and greed with all their tragic effects, that too little attention is paid to the passive sins, such as apathy and laziness, which in the long run can have a more devastating and destructive effect upon our society than the others."

Eleanor Roosevelt

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Quote for Today

"There is no room in this country for hyphenated Americanism. When I refer to hyphenated Americans, I do not refer to naturalized Americans. Some of the very best Americans I have ever known were naturalized Americans, Americans born abroad. But a hyphenated American is not an American at all.

This is just as true of the man who puts "native" before the hyphen as of the man who puts German or Irish or English or French before the hyphen. Americanism is a matter of the spirit and of the soul. Our allegiance must be purely to the United States. We must unsparingly condemn any man who holds any other allegiance. But if he is heartily and singly loyal to this Republic, then no matter where he was born, he is just as good an American as any one else.

The one absolutely certain way of bringing this nation to ruin, of preventing all possibility of its continuing to be a nation at all, would be to permit it to become a tangle of squabbling nationalities, an intricate knot of German-Americans, Irish-Americans, English-Americans, French-Americans, Scandinavian-Americans, or Italian-Americans, each preserving its separate nationality, each at heart feeling more sympathy with Europeans of that nationality than with the other citizens of the American Republic.

The men who do not become Americans and nothing else are hyphenated Americans; and there ought to be no room for them in this country. The man who calls himself an American citizen and who yet shows by his actions that he is primarily the citizen of a foreign land, plays a thoroughly mischievous part in the life of our body politic. He has no place here; and the sooner he returns to the land to which he feels his real heart-allegiance, the better it will be for every good American."

Theodore Roosevelt
Addressing the Knights of Columbus in New York City
12 October 1915

Monday, May 08, 2006

Buyer's Remorse

Moussaoui wanted to be the tough guy, the big bad terrorist who was going to destroy the White House. Now, that he's gotten the life sentence instead of the death penalty, he's saying he lied on the stand and wants to withdraw his guilty plea.
Moussaoui said he was "extremely surprised" that he was sentenced to life in prison instead of execution and now believes he can get a fair trial from an American jury.

In a motion filed Monday, Moussaoui said he testified on March 27 that he was supposed to hijack a fifth plane on Sept. 11, 2001, and fly it into the White House "even though I knew that was a complete fabrication."

A federal court jury spared the 37-year-old Frenchman the death penalty last Wednesday. On Thursday, U.S. District Judge Leonie Brinkema gave him six life sentences, to run as two consecutive life terms, in the federal supermax prison at Florence, Colo.

As she handed down the sentence, Brinkema told Moussaoui that he could appeal the life term but that she doubted he would win. "I believe it would be an act of futility," she said.

The judge also pointed out that, although he could appeal the sentence, he had lost his right to appeal his conviction when he pled guilty in April 2005. "You waived that right," she said.

On Monday, Brinkema said his request to set aside his guilty plea and go back to trial on the facts of the case was "too late" under federal rules and must be rejected. Yahoo News
He had wanted the death penalty because it would have allowed him the label of martyr, since he didn't get it, he wants to change his mind. Well, sorry ol' Zacarias, talked the talk and you get to walk the walk as they say.

Tags: Zacarias Moussaoui, terrorist

A Tale of Two Concerts

This past weekend I attended two concerts. First was our community concert. The high school has three concert bands and the top one, Wind Ensemble, plays college level and above music. These are very talented kids and would put some professional concert bands to shame. And yes, I will brag, my oldest daughter is 1st chair clarinet.

Many of you know that I am glad to live where I do, especially when I hear about what other parents go through with their schools and communities. I'm not saying we're perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but I have to say that the overall feeling is of living in a small town, though we are a fair size city. There is a lot of parent involvement with the kids and their schools. Our band parents group raises enough money every year to purchase new instruments, music and extra uniforms (as our entire band will number approximately 225 next year!).

Now, back to the concert. Here is the program. First of all, the concert was entitled An American Celebration - An Old-Fashioned Band Concert and that is exactly what it was. They performed:

Those Who Serve
Star Spangled Banner Just prior to the beginning of this piece, a formal color guard of four of our local Army soldiers brought in the flag and we all sang.
Where Never Lark Nor Eagle Flew Accompanied by slides and video of man's history of flight.
For fun, they performed For Good from "Wicked"
When the Saints Go Marching In and Oh, You Beautiful Doll performed by a saxophone quintet.
And Godzilla Eats Las Vegas which was really funny!
Beautiful Colorado With an amazing solo by one of the senior bassoon players.
American Soldier Introduced by a Lt.Col. Army with a amazing speech about our soldiers, who they are and why they serve. The song was performed by one of the juniors and pictures of our local men and women who are currently serving.
Mansions of the Lord In honor of the fallen.
Salute to America's Finest Where each armed services song was played and those who served or had loved ones in the service to stand and be recognized.
Sing for America An old-fashioned sing along of favorite patriotic songs.
and finally Stars and Stripes Forever

It was a wonderful concert and enjoyed by all.

Now, as to the second concert. This one I did not attend as a patron, but as a volunteer, serving beer, at our local outdoor concert venue. (The band parents are non-profit volunteers raising money for our kids in band...though the tips are all ours!) There were several bands that played and from what I could hear, I was very thankful that neither of my daughters listen to these bands. My youngest has heard some of the songs on the radio, but does not have any of their CDs. The bands were "Fall Out Boys," "All American Rejects," and "Hawthorne Heights." Now, since I really couldn't hear that much of the songs, I cannot honestly say those were bad, but I can say the band members' mouths were. There were a lot of kids under the age of 18 and these band members were swearing up a storm. I don't want my kids hearing that garbage, much less pay to have them hear it!

So, all in all, I have to say Saturday night's concert was much better that Sunday night's concert.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Perfect Solution

Just about says it all. It's certainly what I hope happens to him! (especially the rat part!)

Cox & Forkum


"Throughout my adult life, I have always tried to acknowledge the debt I owe to my military experience, for allowing me to serve my country and for instilling within me strong moral fiber and self-discipline. These qualities have served me well in a film and television career where I have played many heroic characters. Today, more than ever, the inspiration for the parts I play is found in you - our nation's men and women in uniform - and the selfless contributions you make on a daily basis to keep our country safe and free. I salute you. I thank you. And I wish you Godspeed and a safe return home."
- Chuck Norris
"It's not an understatement to say that the visit we had with our wounded troops was one of the most emotional experiences we have ever had, and one that we will never forget. "Inspirational" is a word that springs to mind, but it really doesn't do justice to the feelings we experienced that day hanging out with those brave guys. Of course, we would do it again in a heartbeat."
- Dusty Hill
ZZ Top bassist
"I just want to tell the troops that I'm with them 110 percent, and I know that they're doing a good thing. Don't listen to the skeptics; continue to do what you do. We need these brave soldiers to fight for our way of life. And the fact that they have the nuts to do that is just unbelievable to me. Tell everyone I said "Git-R-Done.""
- Larry the Cable Guy
Blue-collar comedian
Some of many messages of praise and gratitude that can be found at America Salutes You. Pass it on...let your readers know you support our men and women in uniform!

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Life or Death?

UPDATE at 4:40pm: On count one (Conspiracy to Commit Acts of Terrorism Transcending National Boundaries), count three (Conspiracy to Destroy Aircraft) and count four (Conspiracy to Use Weapons of Mass Destruction): sentenced to life in prison. No martyrdom for him!

The verdict is in...well, the jury sent a note to the judge stating that they had reached a verdict in the sentencing trial of Zacarias Moussaoui. It won't be long before we know what his fate will be. I have no problem with the death penalty, but this is a guy who wants the death penalty because it will make him a martyr to his cause and Al Qaeda. We shouldn't let him have his way on this one.
The verdict will be read at 4:30 p.m.(/2030 GMT) He will be sentenced Thursday at 10 a.m.(/1400 GMT).

Moussaoui, a 37-year-old French citizen of Moroccan descent, faces a sentence of death or life in prison. Yahoo News

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

United 93

I have not seen the movie, but the reveiws and comments I have read and heard have me wanting to see it. I know that my 14-year-old wants to see it and I'm glad of that. She was only eight when it happened, so she doesn't have much memory of the day and I think it's important for her to see what happened that beautiful day in September and what brought us to where we are today. My oldest just let me know that she would like to see it as well, so I think we'll have to go. I realize it's R-rated, but we know why and it's rated that and it's called reality.

I find myself drawn to it see it.

Sunday, April 30, 2006

Something to Consider

Nathan Tabor writes for The Conservative Voice and he has an idea of how to deal with the Day Without Immigrants shut out scheduled for tomorrow. His advice? "BUY, BUY, BUY!"
"Monday, May 1 is being called “A Day Without Immigrants,” but let’s be truthful here. Americans don’t have a problem with immigrants. We have a problem with illegal immigrants.

So what’s this boycott of American businesses going to accomplish -- Not a thing unless you sit home and do nothing!

Get out that day and spend some good ‘ole American greenbacks. Step out of the office and buy lunch. Get that new DVD the kids want. Bring the wife home a dozen roses.

Just buy, buy, buy!

Also, find that American flag pin you have in the back of your sock drawer and put it on before you walk out the door on May 1. Don’t have one? BUY one!

Contact your local, state, and federal representatives and let them know that you won’t be intimidated by illegal aliens demanding rights and neither should they. Put the Stars & Stripes out -- and even if it hurts -- fill up the gas tank on the way to work.

Boycott? What boycott? Let’s show politicians and corporate American the strength of legal citizens."
Sounds good to me. Also, make note of the businesses that are closed in support of this effort and do not patronize them from here on. If these businesses are willing to support illegal immigrants coming in and breaking the law while making use of our schools, hospitals and assistance, then they should pay the price for it, by losing business. (emphasis mine)

Tags: Nathan Tabor, illegal immigrants, boycott

Saturday, April 29, 2006

A Female Soldier 2

It's been a while since I've posted about Grey Eagle of A Female Soldier 2, but there's a story she has posted on her blog that is a must read. She writes wonderful tributes to our fallen soldiers but this one in particular, is different because it involves a gift of life from this soldier and his wife to a young girl and a budding friendship.

At the bottom of another post was this little tidbit...I don't have TiVo, so I'll have to write myself a note to watch it!
"On a side note. On Sunday April 30th at 6:30 PM (EST)/5:30 PM(CST) my husband will be appearing in a live interview on CNN regarding the website and life as a husband of a female soldier."

Tags: heros, gift of life, tribute

A Cautionary Post

One of my favorite bloggers, Frau Budgie of Red Hot Cuppa Politics has a very thought provoking post on what would/could happen if the Dems win in '06 and then the Prez in '08. It's a bit frightening. I would encourage you to read it and think about what we might come up against this fall should the Dems win a majority in Congress...
First, we pull out of Iraq. There will be no Congressional support for our efforts there. I remember this happening during Vietnam, and I don't think we can afford a replay of Nam. We pull the rug out from under our allies in Iraq, who are painfully managing to achieve a decent government of their own. There's progress being made, tho not reported, and they still need our back-up. So, Dems win, we pull out, there's a civil war in Iraq and no matter who wins, they all hate the USA. Al Quada declares victory, and feels free to attack our interests overseas and at home. And, remember -- the Dems pretty much have to get us to pull out of Iraq, to please their wealthy anti-war billionaire funders.

Second, Bush gets impeached -- whether there's rational, documentable grounds or not, probably along the lines of "lying" about Iraq, and "outting" Val Plame. One of the deepest pockets of the Democrat donors (Soros) has pledged his fortune to getting Bush out of office. And, if Dems have a majority, they'll hang together and make it happen, regardless of evidence to the contrary. Because that's what they do.
And if that's not enough to make you think before you vote, here's a little tidbit sure to make you nauseous!
And, Cindy Sheehan's smirk gets bigger, and she claims she speaks for the American people. (That's you and me.) She and her buds in Code Pink will point to a Democrat elected Congress as proof, and folks overseas will believe it. Think about that one for a moment, then contemplate the international gig if Democrats win.
I can just feel the anger from all my blogger friends who have spent many a cold Friday evening in front of Walter Reed Hospital facing down that group of nincompoops! To make them "right" would be a complete travesty. So, as Budgie suggests, maybe we do hold our noses and vote for a Republican even if he/she isn't doing so great for us now, because look at the mess we'd have if the Dems took control! Food for thought!

Tags: elections, Republicans, Democrats

"Politically Uncorrect"

Politically Uncorrect
Gretchen Wilson and Merle Haggard

I'm for the low man on the totem pole
And I'm for the underdog God bless his soul
And I'm for the guys still pulling third shift
And the single mom raisin' her kids
I'm for the preachers who stay on their knees
And I'm for the sinner who finally believes
And I'm for the farmer with dirt on his hands
And the soldiers who fight for this land


And I'm for the Bible and I'm for the flag
And I'm for the working man, me and ol' hag
I'm just one of many
Who can't get no respect
Politically uncorrect

(Merle Haggard)
I guess my opinion is all out of style
(Gretchen Wilson)
Aw, but don't get me started cause I can get riled
And I'll make a fight for the forefathers plan
(Merle Haggard)
And the world already knows where I stand

Repeat Chorus

(Merle Haggard)
Nothing wrong with the Bible, nothing wrong with the flag
(Gretchen Wilson)
Nothing wrong with the working man me & ol' hag
We're just some of many who can't get no respect
Politically uncorrect
(Merle Haggard)
Politically uncorrect.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Withdrawal Symptoms!

UPDATE: (4/27-4:45pm) I now have two more jobs due tomorrow one at 9 am and one at noon and yet another due back on Saturday. Not-sure-I-will-survive! Need massive amounts of coffee!! So, the withdrawal symptoms get worse....

Just a quick note to say I've been very busy with work and haven't been able to read all my favorites for a couple days! I'm going through withdrawals! I want to be reading and blogging right now, but I have two jobs to get done and I'm hoping they won't keep me up all night! Hope to have you read and post here and I will be around to visit tomorrow! (Because I can't stand missing all your good posts people!!)

A Glutton For Punishment

Tony Snow accepted the position of White House Press Secretary. Or, as he calls the position, the White House pinata!

I wish him well and hope he gives as good as he gets!

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

You Decide

UPDATE: One of my frequent stops in the blogosphere is Major Chaz's place at Mind in the Qatar. He has an awesome graphic that tells more than mere words on the who's who in this shell game!

I realize I'm a little late on this one, but I thought I would finally put my two cents in on it.

Mary McCarthy is neither honorable nor should she be praised. She was in a high security position and she intentionally leaked information to the press. If she had questions or concerns about the information, she had a chain of command to go through and should that route not proven satisfactory to her, she could have demanded a congressional investigation. Instead she took the information and gave it to the media.

Espionage is defined as "the practice of gathering, transmitting, or losing through gross negligence information relating to the defense of the U.S. with the intent that or with reason to believe that the information will be used to the injury of the U.S. or the advantage of a foreign nation."

Treason is defined as a "violation of allegiance toward one's country or sovereign, especially the betrayal of one's country by waging war against it or by consciously and purposely acting to aid its enemies."

You decide.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Another Fran's Update

UPDATE on the UPDATE: Dave at THIRDWAVEDAVE has an awesome round-up of information and links about the Fran O'Brien's mess!

Seems that what the Hilton has been saying about how hard they tried to work out a deal with the owner's of the Fran O'Brien's Restaurant is all a lot of garbage! Here is a bit of an e-mail from Buzz Patterson to Smash at The Indepundit:
"I just had a long chat with Hal Koster. Our worst fears are not only well founded but grossly understated. It's a complete and thorough cluster @#$%. (Sorry, my words not his). I haven't been this pissed about anything in a very long time.

Andi, Kelleher's responses to our questions were blatant lies. Despite what Kelleher says, Hilton has done nothing to support the dinners... never met a bus, never contributed a cent, never negotiated for changes to bring the restaurant into ADA compliance, never advertised the restaurant or the dinners within their own hotel, never provided logistical support... in a word, they've done absolutely zip. In fact, Kelleher hides out in his office and has had no contact with Fran's owners. Hilton Corporate hasn't returned phone calls or e-mails. Hal has never spoken with a rep from Hilton about a future. This O'Boyle guy who is supposedly in charge of Hilton's leases has been MIA for years. Not only unprofessional in my opinion but grossly negligent. Fran's has been profitable every year in spite of the fact that Hilton won't even live up to their responsibilities for facilities management. They've had some plumbing issues... Hal and Marty now call their own plumber. Hilton wanted Fran's to re-upholster the booths and change the carpet, Hal and Marty asked for ADA compliance in return. When negotiations ceased, Hilton doubled their rent last month (doubled!). And then issued an eviction notice two weeks later.

Hal and Marty have retained lawyers and, as mentioned before, have the support of several influential organizations and people..."
And here is Fuzzybear Lioness's (of Fuzzilicous Thinking) impression after visiting Fran's during the Blogger's conference this weekend:
"Fran O'Brien's is an amazing place. I've gone from the theoretical anger and outrage over what's being to done to them and the soldiers they a whole 'nother level of fury at the terribleness of the developing loss.

Talked to Hal Koster--I asked him what the prospects of continuing the restaurant elsewhere were. His face said it all, though he added that they were trying desperately. He also says even if they can find the real estate, renovating a typical building for a restaurant would take 1.5 - 2 million."
This whole situation is just wrong! Unfortunately, Hilton has done this in such a way that there is no recourse for Marty and Hal to be able to stay there. And as mentioned by Fuzzy, it is unlikely they will be able to start at a new place any time soon, if at all! This just stinks all the way around. I may not travel very much, but I can tell you that if and when I do, I will not be staying at a Hilton or Hilton affiliate hotel!

Tags: Fran O'Brien's, Hilton Hotels

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Soldiers' View

This song was written by Luke Stricklin/JR Shultz (FOB Warrior, Baghdad, Iraq December 5, 2004) and is now being played on country music stations nationwide.

American By God's Amazing Grace

Bottom of my boots sure are gettin' worn
there's a lot of holes in this faded uniform
My hands are black with dirt and so is my face
I ain't never been to hell
but it couldn't be any worse than this place.
Tell my wife don't worry 'cause I know what to do
it makes you feel better sometimes, but don't know if it's true.
I know if I die it's just my time to go
but I pray to God every day that I may get back home.

Well when you've seen what I've seen
things don't seem so bad
quit worrying 'bout what you ain't got,
thank God for what you have
'Cause I could be raising my family in this place
but I was born an American
by Gods Amazing Grace.

For the last twelve months I've had a new address
the neighborhood smells like sewage and the streets are lined with trash.
You never know what's gonna be the next thing to explode
but unlike these people, I have another home.
It breaks my heart to see these kids out on the streets
walking barefoot through the trash, diggin' for something to eat.
I give them what I got, just to let them know I care
and I thank God it's not my son that's standing there.

Well when you've seen what I've seen
things don't seem so bad
quit worrying 'bout what you ain't got,
thank God for what you have
'Cause I could be raising my family in this place
but I was born an American
by Gods Amazing Grace.

You want to talk about it, you better keep it short
cause I got a lot of lost time I gotta make up for.
Really don't care why Bush went in to Iraq
I know what I done there and I'm damn sure proud of that.
You got somethin' bad to say about the USA
you better save it for different ears 'less you want to crawl away.
And I laugh in your face when you say you've got it bad
until you've spent some time on the streets of Baghdad

Well when you've seen what I've seen
things don't seem so bad
quit worrying 'bout what you ain't got,
thank God for what you have
'Cause you could be raising your family in this place
but you were born in America, By God's Amazing Grace!

Speaking to Parents

I find it very interesting that so many of the African-American community have called comedian Bill Cosby a racist because he admonishes parents to actual parent their children. His appearance in Cincinnati over Easter weekend gives examples that a parent of any race or background could and should take to heart.
Education: "If your child has never asked you a question about what he is studying, you are not protecting that child. And if you're not doing it, be ashamed of yourself ... I want someone to say to them, 'Where is your damn homework?' "...

Drugs: "If you have heard a child say, 'I'm going to stop flipping burgers and go out and make some real money selling drugs,' did you stop that idiot and say, 'You don't flip burgers for the rest of your life. You do it until you can be manager of the burger-flipping place'?"

Parenting: "When are you going to challenge them about CDs full of vulgarity and profanity? ... When are you going to challenge them with, 'I want to know who your friends are before you leave this apartment'?"
Yes, Mr. Cosby does speak directly to the African-American community by addressing the drop-out rates and drug rates and single parent rates in the black community, but what he is saying is not racist, it is fact. And they are facts that need to be addressed to change the future. He admonishes parents to get it together and take care of their kids and stop allowing others to do it. He's telling them to stand up and do something!
"We're letting Jesus drag that cross and we're standing there saying 'Isn't it terrible? Somebody oughtta do something.' We're standing on the sidelines. All we want to know is, 'You got time to fix my elbow?' "
The overall message of this speech though seems to have been redemption...he offers parents ways to redeem themselves and help their children become upstanding contributing members of society. I certainly wouldn't call that racist!

Cincinnati Enquirer

Tags: parenting, Bill Cosby

Friday, April 21, 2006

This One is Going Up on the Sidebar, too!

I loved this and had to share it. I know a lot of my readers feel this way, too!

The image is from
Iowa Presidential Watch and can be found on t-shirts at Cafe Press.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Something I've Never Understood

There has been a lot of talk about Maryscott O'Connor, her blog (which I will not link here because it is disgusting), the anger she exhibits and the language that she uses. After reading the article in the Washington Post, I really felt sorry for her young son. To grow up with a mother having that much anger and using that much foul language, it makes me wonder how peaceful and nurturing his homelife could possibly be. Why does she feel it's necessary to use that language or to be that angry? I'm not happy with the government on many issues either, but I wouldn't use gutter language to try to get my point across.

Now there is another book out about Hillary Clinton called I've Always Been a Yankees Fan: Hillary Clinton in Her Own Words. Granted it is written by Dick Morris who is quite critical of the Clintons, but the quotes in this book would make most women cringe - well, at least most women I know! Here are just a couple exerpts:
"This is the kind of s*** I have to put up with."
(To a friend after a Clinton supporter gave her a pair of Arkansas Razorback earrings.) - such graciousness

"If you want to remain on this detail, get your a** over here and grab those bags."
(To an agent who wanted to keep his hands free in case of a security threat.) - he is supposed to protect her, yet she wants him to tote her bags?!
And the worst one that Vasko Kohlmayer of The American Thinker sites in his article The F-Word and Femaleness.
"Where is the goddamn f**ing flag?... I want the goddamn f*ing flag up every f*ing morning at f**ing sunrise."
(Addressing her Arkansas staff) - nice
I've never been a big fan of Hillary Clinton and it really doesn't have that much to do with her politics as it does with her demeanor, her language and her complete lack of integrity. My disagreement with her politics is a whole different story.

Now, I'm not saying I've never used foul language, I've fallen victim to the notion that it is an attention getter, but it really wasn't the attention I wanted and I regretted using it. So, I don't understand the need to use this language continuously, without thought to your listeners or readers. And I wonder, do women really think people will respect them when they use this language? To me, it simply shows a lack of education and/or imagination. If you want to lead and you want people to respect you, you do not treat them like the dirt beneath your feet nor do you speak to them in such a manner. This is one of the main reasons I do not read the far left blogs (and yes, even a few blogs on the right). Why would I want to read expletive after expletive with no intelligent discourse or reasoning? It is bad enough when men use this language thinking that it makes them sound tough, but when women use it, it simply shows their baseness. It doesn't make you tough like a man, it makes you weak and low and unintelligent.

Maragaret Thatcher, as referenced in Vasko Kohlmayer's article, was a very strong leader and a formidable adversary and she did it without ever using foul language. I would much rather hold her or a true lady such as Laura Bush, up as an example of leadership and integrity to my daughters than those the left call their women leaders.

Tags: bloggers, leadership, integrity

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Couldn't Pay Me Enough

Scott McClellan, the White House Press Secretary, has resigned. Now, I can't blame the man one bit. You couldn't pay me enough to have to face those "reporters" every day. They are back-stabbing sharks for the most part and will do whatever it takes to put words in your mouth or twist what you say to please themselves or their editors! I certainly wish Scott all the best. I'm sure the first thing he'll be doing is taking a nice vacation to the middle of nowhere, where there are no reporters!

As for Rove. Well, he's thrown a bone out there, but it won't be enough for the loonies who say he runs everything. He will still have his hand in it, but apparently only on the political side not the policy making side. It just won't do for those who want his head, though.
Yahoo News

Tags: White House, Bush Administration

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Fran O'Brien's Update

I'll admit it, I'm lazy, but I wanted to get this update out there for anyone who reads my posts. Fuzzybear Lioness at Fuzzilicious Thinking has done the work and has the latest update (which I've "borrowed" here), along with several other posts about the plight of Fran O'Brien's. I recommend reading them. Here is today's news:
After my post about the Italians helping Fran O'Brien's with the Friday dinners, I received an email from Shoshana Bryan, Director of Special Projects for the Jewish Institute of National Security Affairs:
My organization, JINSA, has been responsible for coordinating gifts to Fran O"Briens, and Finmeccanica's was the largest, but not the only corporate donation. We have provided the administration for about 90% of the money [donated for the dinners].

Hilton DID NOT CALL JINSA OR FINMECCANICA, so I don't know who they're talking to when they say they're talking to "sponsors."

Thanks for following this.

Shoshana Bryen

Shoshana Bryen
Director of Special Projects
Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs
1779 Massachusetts Ave., NW, Suite 515
Washington, DC 20036
[Originally, Fran's shouldered the cost alone, but recently much of it has been covered by donations from sponsors. Hilton has said in the last few days that they've been talking to sponsors of the dinners to continue the dinners after Fran O'Brien's leaves.]

Obviously Ms. Bryen has been working closely with Fran O'Brien's and is aware of the issues involved in their lease. Today I found an opinion column by Ms. Bryen at National Review Online. As has been published elsewhere, she affirms that Fran's was repeatedly reassured they would be offered a new lease for their consideration, but that they never received an offer. She also makes the following accusations:
...the hotel is in violation of Americans With Disabilities Act. Hilton has not made the basement restaurant ADA compliant — part of the lease negotiation was to have been for the replacement of a non-working escalator in the Hilton lobby with an ADA-compliant elevator. Since there were no negotiations, there is no elevator.
Fran's supporters have long claimed that Fran's says there were no negotiations despite reassurances from Hilton. I'd say Fran's is now staking out this position as fact as far as they're concerned. Ms. Bryen goes on to make some serious speculation, but I think it's more a "shot across the bow" than it is a true accusation, as it's judging intentions which are hard to prove:
ADA noncompliance is illegal, but more importantly, it is shameful when the chief victims are veterans who have been injured in service to our country. But the compliance issue is the better of the two possibilities.

Scenario number two is that Hilton is uncomfortable with so many wounded soldiers passing through its lobby on the way to the restaurant and worries about the impact it will have on the hotel guests.
Based on some things I've read publicly inferred by those who are "in the know," I wouldn't be surprised to see a lawsuit against Hilton pop up in the next couple of days. This column in NRO--a forum that bristles with powerful supporters of the military--is another warning shot to Hilton. They should've gotten the message from the overwhelming volume of emails and phone calls they received, as well as the national media coverage. But any Hilton executive reading this now knows Fran's and their inner circle aren't going to go quietly. I'd be starting to worry if I were the Hilton, and I'd be asking my Capital Hilton hotel about the wisdom of their "just business" decisions.
I truly believe that the Hilton has completely miscalculated this decision and it's going to come back and bite them financially. It may not be a big deal for them, but it will certainly get their attention.

Tags: Fran O'Brien's, Hilton Hotel

Doing Our Part

Are you doing all you can to support the troops and their mission?

Remember September 11th.

Feeling patriotic and needing to pass it on!

Monday, April 17, 2006

Quote of the Day

"People can be divided into two classes: those who go ahead and do something, and those who sit still and inquire, why wasn't it done the other way?"

Oliver Wendell Holmes