Sunday, November 19, 2017

Border Patrol Agent Killed

A U.S. Customs and Border Protection agent was killed, and another was injured, while responding to activity along the border in the Big Bend Sector of Texas Sunday.

Don't think I'll go back to the NFL

As regular blog readers know, I started boycotting the NFL as the start of the 2016 season because of the players disrespecting the flag, the country and veterans, and I'm still there. But you know what? I don't miss it. I enjoy having the extra time to read and write. I doubt I'll go back to watching the NFL even if they knock that anti-American stuff off.

Take a Knee song

Country Music Star Sings Patriotic Song Dedicated To NFL Players Who ‘Take A Knee’ And Americans Love It

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Two recommended books

Book Reviews

The Last Stand: Custer, Sitting Bull, and the Battle of the Little Bighorn by Nathaniel Philbrick 
As a history buff with a master's in the subject, I have read a lot about Custer and the Bighorn fight. But as a fan of Philbrick's other work, I had to pick this up. It will be the standard work on the battle for many years. It is well written, well researched and well balanced. It goes into the personalities of Custer (he sounds like a modern politician--and I don't mean that as a compliment) and of Sitting Bull, detailing a lot of their careers before and, for Sitting Bull, after the battle. It cites the positives as well as his negatives of the participants on both sides. It also examines in detail the actions of Reno, Benteen, Terry, Gibbon and others. As a vet, I would not have wanted to serve under any of them. Philbrick has reviewed a great many sources, including some unpublished, and weighs the veracity of the accounts. There are a myriad of details I didn't know, Like that Sitting Bull's great-grandson served in the 101st Airborne in Vietnam and received a Bronze Star. This is a must for history buffs, especially those with an interest in military or western history.


Language in Thought and Action: Fifth Edition by S.I. Hayakawa (Author),‎ Alan R. Hayakawa (Author),‎ Robert MacNeil (Introduction)
This excellent book was referred to me by my friend who is a retired USMC Colonel. Because Hayakawa was a conservative US Senator, I fear some will pass the book by because of the political divide. This would be a their loss. According to Wiki, Hayakawa was "a linguist, psychologist, semanticist, teacher, and writer." This book is non-political, in fact there is much that progressives would approve of. From the preface: "The original version of this book, Language in Action, was in many respects a response to the dangers of propaganda, especially as exemplified in Adolf Hitler's success in persuading millions to share his maniacal and destructive views. It was my conviction then, as it remains now, that we need a habitually critical attitude toward language--our own as well as that of others--both to provide for our personal well-being, and to ensure that we will function adequately as citizens. Hitler is gone, but if the majority of our fellow citizens are more susceptible to slogans of fear and race hatred than those of respect and peaceful accommodation among human beings, our political liberties remain at the mercy of any eloquent and unscrupulous demagogue." And, "The basic ethical assumption of semantics, analogous to the assumption in medicine that health is preferable to illness, is that cooperation is preferable to conflict."
            He clearly explains the difference between reports, inferences and judgments.  He goes into the uses of purr-words and snarl-words, and details how what should be "reports" are often slanted into judgments. Some other quotes, "It will be the basic assumption of this book that widespread intraspecific cooperation through the use of language is the fundamental mechanism of human survival."  And, "Today the full resources of advertising agencies, public-relations experts, radio, television, and slanted news stories are brought to bear in order to influence our decisions in election campaigns, especially presidential elections." (Published in 1990 before the Internet! But he didn't have much good to say about TV.)  And," If we can get deeply into our consciousness the principle that no word ever has the same meaning twice, we will develop the habit of automatically examining contexts, and this enables us to understand better what others are saying."

            I wish I had read this book 45 years ago. It would have made me a better senator, and better speaker and a better writer. In my view, it should be read by every reporter, every broadcaster, every politician, every writer and all who rely on clear communication in their lives. 

Just one more thing

(From the net) Just One More Thing...

- Just one more thing on ObamaCare Repeal:
Since only 8 million people have ObamaCare, how will 24 million people die if it is repealed?
Will 16 million people be randomly shot?

- Just one more thing on Donald Trump:
If Donald Trump deleted all of his emails, wiped his server with Bleachbit and destroyed all of his phones with a hammer, would the Mainstream Media suddenly lose all interest in the story and declare him innocent?

- Just one more thing on equal pay:
If women do the same job for less money, why do companies hire men to do the same job for more money?

- Just one more thing on Sanctuary Cities:
If you rob a bank in a Sanctuary City, is it illegal or is it just an Undocumented Withdrawal?

- Just one more thing on ISIS:
Each ISIS attack now is a reaction to Trump policies, but all ISIS attacks during Obama's term were due to
Climate Change and a plea for jobs.

- Just one more thing on the London 'Lone Wolf' terror attack:
After the London 'Lone Wolf' terrorist attack government officials have arrested at least eight other 'Lone Wolves' who had conspired with the original 'Lone Wolf' in planning the 'Lone Wolf' attack. Even though all involved are Muslims, you can be assured, the 'Lone Wolf; attack has nothing at all to do with Islam, just like the other 1000 plus 'Lone Wolf' attacks by Muslims, are completely unassociated with Islam.

- Just one more thing on Entitlements:
We should stop calling them all 'Entitlements'. Welfare, Food Stamps, WIC, ad nauseum are not entitlements.
They are taxpayer-funded handouts, and shouldn't be called entitlements at all. Social Security and Veterans Benefits areEntitlements because the people receiving them are entitled to them. They were earned and paid for by the recipients.

- Just one more thing on the Muslim Refugees:
If Muslims want to run away from a Muslim country, does that mean they're Islamophobic?

- Just one more thing on The Women's March:
If Liberals don't believe in biological gender then why did they march for women's rights?

- Just one more thing on the Russians hacking the election:
How did the Russians get Debbie Wasserman Schultz and the DNC to steal the Primary from Bernie Sanders? How did Russia get Donna Brazile to leak debate questions to Hillary Clinton in advance of the debates?

- Just one more thing on Democrats and the Electoral College:
Why is it that Democrats think Super delegates are fine, but they have a problem with the Electoral College?

- Just one more thing on the FBI and elections:
If you don't want the FBI involved in elections, don't nominate someone who's being investigated by the FBI.

- Just one more thing on Hillary's speeches:
If Hillary's speeches cost $250,000 an hour, how come no one shows up to her free ones?

- Just one more thing on Russia manipulating our election:
The DNC is mad at Russia because they 'think' they are trying to manipulate our election by exposing that
the DNC is manipulating our election?

- Just one more thing on Trump's 'Locker Room Banter':
Why is it that Liberals and the Media are upset about the words Trump used 11 years ago but they are alright with Adult men using the Ladies Room with your Wives and Daughters?
- And just one last thing...
Blacks who were never slaves are fighting whites who were never Nazis over a Confederate statue erected by southern Democrats because now Democrats can't stand their own history anymore.......yet somehow it's Trump's fault!

Child Sex Abuse

US Troops Taught For Years Child Sex Abuse Is ‘Culturally Accepted’ In Afghanistan

Attacks on churches

Germany: Two hundred churches damaged and Christian symbols destroyed in just one region
Excerpt: In a rare candid moment, German media reported at least 200 cases of damaged churches in the region of Bavaria alone every year. In addition, attacks on summit crosses are also increasing in the region’s mountains. Crosses on several mountain tops have been toppled and destroyed with axes or saws. There’s a growing anger among the indigenous German population over the attacks. Some people think Islamists are behind it. But the attacks on churches and summit crosses are not isolated cases; for months, attacks on Christian symbols have been reported from several Bavarian cantons.

Murdered for wearing western clothes

Muslim convert mum 'forbidden from seeing friends and family was stabbed to death, dumped in woods then torched'
26-year-old Sinead Wooding had gone back to wearing western clothing when she was brutally murdered in a knife and hammer attack, a court heard

Florida Democrat Party Chairman Resigns Over Sexual Comments

Florida Democrat Party Chairman Resigns Over Sexual Comments
Excerpt: Stephen Bittel, Chairman of the Florida Democratic Party, has announced that he will resign his post. Bittel is the latest political figure to be accused of engaging in less than appropriate behavior with his female colleagues:

Tax cuts


Electoral College


Friday, November 17, 2017

Communist Poland

Hey Milennials: Communism Sucks, I Lived It
Excerpt: A recent poll found that fifty percent of millennials say they would rather live in a communist or socialist country than in a capitalist democracy. These numbers can’t be laughed off -- they should frighten you. Maybe they don’t know what communism means. I do. I lived in Communist Poland. Perhaps those fifty percent of millennials were not properly taught about communism in school. That’s too bad, and dangerous. So here are some examples for those misguided millennials to ponder, all of which I experienced in communist Poland.

Clinton should have quit

Gillibrand Says Bill Clinton Should Have Resigned Over Lewinsky Affair
Excerpt: Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, Democrat of New York, who holds Hillary Clinton’s former seat, said on Thursday that Bill Clinton should have resigned the presidency after his inappropriate relationship with an intern came to light nearly 20 years ago. Asked directly if she believed Mr. Clinton should have stepped down at the time, Ms. Gillibrand took a long pause and said, “Yes, I think that is the appropriate response.” (No Democrats said that then! ~Bob)

How it started


China


Who is racist?


Millennials

Too Funny: At Least My Generation Will Have Our Revenge On The Millennials

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Ethics Probe?

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer on Thursday called for an ethics probe of Sen. Al Franken in the wake of allegations that he groped and kissed a Los Angeles TV host without her consent, as fellow Democrats on Capitol Hill condemned the Minnesota senator.

Frankin

Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., has been accused by a California TV host and sports broadcaster of kissing and groping her without her consent in 2006.
He a liberal. They will close ranks around him unless there's more. ~Bob

General Leon's shooting in context

The Missing Context: General Loan’s Shooting of the Viet Cong Terrorist
 “Context is everything,” goes an old saying. Unfortunately, the Sunday, September 24 episode of the PBS Documentary “The Vietnam War” did not provide the context of the most iconic photo of the war-that of General Nguyen Ngoc Loan executing a Viet Cong terrorist. Let me provide that context, based on conversations with both the late General Loan and the late Eddie Adams, the photojournalist who won the Pulitzer Prize for taking the photo. I was one of five US Army captains working under a US Marine Corps Lieutenant Colonel and a senior CIA official with General Loan’s National Police to develop innovative means to identify the Viet Cong leadership. I left Vietnam five months before the Tet Offensive. When Loan came to the United States after the fall of Vietnam, he opened a restaurant in Burke, VA. My wife and I, with our young daughters, would often go there. We also saw Loan at reunions in Northern Virginia of the Vietnamese National Police.  On most of these functions, Loan and I sat together, discussing the Vietnam war, particularly the events of that fateful day of the photo. He told me the man he shot was Nguyen Van Lem, also known by his Nom de Guerre  of Captain Bay Lop. He was a sleeper Viet Cong agent who then surfaced as commander of one of the assassination teams with the mission of  decapitating the leadership of the South Vietnam government in the opening hours of the Offensive. The PBS documentary, to its credit, covers in detail these death squads, perhaps the first tine the American public has learned of them. Sunday's episode, however, failed  to point out that the specific target of Lem’s team was the National Police leadership. Lem was captured at a mass grave site containing the bodies of more than 30 police officials and their families. He had just killed a senior officer, his wife, and six small children. Upon being captured,  Lem stated he was proud of what he had done. He was brought to Loan, who had been briefed on Lem’s crimes. Loan pulled the trigger at the precise second Adams took the photo. A strong argument can be made that, under Article 4 of the 1949 Geneva Convention, Lem was an "illegal combatant" and thus could be subjected to military justice, including summary execution. I'll leave it to lawyers to argue that, but the American public, lacking the facts surrounding the execution, certainly condemned Loan as a war criminal. General Loan died in July 1998. At his funeral, I spoke with Eddie Adams ( who passed away in 2004) who had become a close friend of the General. He confirmed what Loan had told me. He added that he had taken many photos of Loan rallying his police and the Vietnamese people, but the Associated Press refused to publish them. He wrote a poignant eulogy on General Loan for Time Magazine in which he said, “The General killed the Viet Cong. I killed the General with my camera.” I thank the Washington Post for allowing me to tell the story behind this photo.
 Lawrence Tracy
 Bethesda
 The writer is a retired US Army colonel who spent 32 months in Vietnam

If the caption on the famous photograph of General Loan shooting Bay Lop in the head was captioned "In the midst of a fierce battle, an ARVN officer executes a captured terrorist (who had committed multiple war crime murders and boasted about them) in accordance with the rules of war", then things would have been very, very different for many millions of people all over the world.  That caption should still be under that image every time anyone sees it.
 

Del

Can blacks be friends with whites?

'Can My Children Be Friends With White People?’
Excerpt: Donald Trump’s election has made it clear that I will teach my boys the lesson generations old, one that I for the most part nearly escaped. I will teach them to be cautious, I will teach them suspicion, and I will teach them distrust. Much sooner than I thought I would, I will have to discuss with my boys whether they can truly be friends with white people. As against our gauzy national hopes, I will teach my boys to have profound doubts that friendship with white people is possible. When they ask, I will teach my sons that their beautiful hue is a fault line. Spare me platitudes of how we are all the same on the inside. I first have to keep my boys safe, and so I will teach them before the world shows them this particular brand of rending, violent, often fatal betrayal. (The NYTimes just published an article titled 'Can My Children Be Friends With White People?’ And the answer is, no, not really. Below are two paragraphs from the article, that I find absolutely the saddest things to read in a very long time. This parent has decided that Trump's election and the "tolerance" she believes all Whites have for his assorted dumb and insensitive statements about people are proof that Whites are in fact mostly just too different, too blind, too consciously or unconsciously racist to ever be trusted by Black Americans. And of course if you cannot really trust someone at all, you cannot delude yourself into thinking you can be friends. One of the phrases really got my attention, the references to the "rending, violent, often fatal betrayal". So White friends are murdering Blacks "often"? I'm still stuck on the sad fact that the huge majority of Blacks murdered are murdered by other Blacks. And that a detailed study by a Black professor last year concluded that there was no actual pattern of racist killings of Black men by cops. (That doesn't mean there was not a single case of an unwarranted shooting, it just means there's no statistically observable pattern.) One facet out of many of our present unfortunate situation of racial tensions is the perception by so many that there is in fact a huge incidence of violence and murder against Blacks in this country by Whites. That's simply not supportable by any evidence, and in fact there's statistically more violence by Blacks against Whites than the reverse. But perception becomes all too real for people. I wish I had an answer for this, other than Mr. Trump getting lockjaw. Which would not solve the problem, but at least there would be less gas thrown on this smoldering fire. I can only pray somehow these tensions get relieved. And there will be no barriers, real or perceived, between any Americans being friends. --Del)

Islamophobia


One Gun

The Story of This One Gun Is the Story of a Straw Purchaser. Jim Geraghty (Second story down)
Excerpt: The Washington Post offers a well-reported, detailed odyssey of how one 9mm Glock 17 pistol changed hands several times and was used in multiple shootings and crimes within just a few nights in 2014. What it reveals is that the gun was purchased in Manassas by Jamal Fletcher Baker, a young man with no criminal record or record of mental illness. But Baker lied on the required paperwork, Federal Form 4473, and declared he was buying the gun for himself when in fact he was purchasing it for an unemployed aspiring rapper nicknamed “Stunna.” If we want to stop gun crimes, we probably need to stop letting straw purchasers off the hook. As my colleague Kevin Williamson points out, prosecutors may have understandable reasons to be less than fully enthusiastic about pressing charges in some of these cases: “the nature of the people making straw purchases — young relatives, girlfriends who may or may not have been facing the threat of physical violence, grandmothers, etc. — made prosecuting those cases unattractive.” Kevin points out that if you put some gang member’s grandmother in jail for a long time, you may actually deter future use of grandmothers as straw purchasers.

Jews and hate crimes

Islamophobia? Jews Represented 54% Of ALL Hate Crimes In 2016
Excerpt: With the constant refrain of Islamophobia parroted by the mainstream media, it might be interesting for them to note one telling statistic from the FBI as they tallied hate crimes in 2016: Of the 1,538 hate crimes motivated by religious bias that were reported by law enforcement, a whopping 54% were anti-Jewish; more than double the 25% that were anti-Muslim. After the precipitous drop from the anti-Jewish crimes to the anti-Muslim crimes, there was another huge drop to the third-most targeted group: Catholics, at 4%.

Medicine

In Medicine, the Science Has Stopped Workinghttp://www.nationalreview.com/article/453748/research-replication-crisis-growing-problem?utm_source=Sailthru&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=NR%20Daily%20Monday%20through%20Friday%202017-11-15&utm_term=NR5PM%20Actives
Excerpt: Many scientific fields are facing a “replication crisis.” The modern scientific method is based on the idea that experiments can be replicated. The point of a scientific experiment is to isolate every possible cause from an experiment except the one under study, so that we can tease out the cause-and-effect relationships that go into the phenomena being studied. This means that a similar experiment conducted by different people should yield the same result. If a given study cannot be replicated, then the likelihood is very high that it is a fluke. The replication crisis in experimental psychology has been well publicized. But there is a replication crisis going on in bio-medicine at the moment too, and it is even worse. The rule of thumb in psychology is that around half of the experimental results cannot be replicated, but as the engineer and writer Will Wilson points out in an important article on the state of science, a landmark 2011 study from a team at Bayer trying to replicate seemingly important findings in pre-clinical cancer biology failed to replicate 75 percent of them. In another study, only 11 percent of the results could be replicated. (...)  In other words, a lot of the basic science that is used every day to do cancer research or discover new drugs is essentially junk.  (...)  And the problem is systemic. It’s one thing for some scientific challenges to be very difficult, so that progress is slow, grinding, and frustrating. But replicability is a foundation of the scientific method. Without it, the problem is not that scientists are tackling a hard problem, it’s that they don’t have the tools to even be sure they’re doing science at all. And yet we need the science to work.  (Unfortunately, while this article was aimed at bio-medical research studies, it is also an accurate criticism of other science-related issues, especially the ones that have become political flash-points in the past two decades or so [think of “climate” science, nuclear energy and technology, space policy, et cetera].  The whole point of “peer-review” is that one or more of those peers may choose to try to replicate the original work; if they can’t replicate it, they’re supposed to call “BS.”  In practice, the sheer expense and time needed for the duplicated effort is largely viewed as being wasted.  So, the “peers” simply accept whatever is politically convenient.  This is yet another way of begging for disaster.  The link may not be live.  Ron P.)

ISIS Threatens Pope

ISIS' Christmas threat to the Pope: Terror group threaten vehicle and gun attack on the Vatican
No problem. Pope Francis can just step out of his luxurious apartments, embrace the Islamic State jihadis, kiss their feet, and explain to them that authentic Islam and the proper understanding of the Qur’an reject every form of violence. Then they’ll share a hearty laugh over their former misunderstanding of Islam, and all will be well. --Robert Spencer

Assault Rifle


Dangerous?


Wednesday, November 15, 2017

A Vet Remembers

A Vet Remembers: A Bad Mood, a Six-Pack, and a Typewriter
Posted on December 13, 1980 by Fred Reed
Excerpt: I begin to weary of the stories about veterans that are now in vogue with the newspapers, the stories that dissect the veteran’s psyche as if prying apart a laboratory frog — patronizing stories written by style-section reporters who know all there is to know about chocolate mousse, ladies’ fashions, and the wonderful desserts that can be made with simple jello. I weary of seeing veterans analyzed and diagnosed and explained by people who share nothing with veterans, by people who, one feels intuitively, would regard it as a harrowing experience to be alone in a backyard.Week after week the mousse authorities tell us what is wrong with the veteran. The veteran is badly in need of adjustment, they say — lacks balance, needs fine tuning to whatever it is in society that one should be attuned to. What we have here, all agree, with omniscience and veiled condescension, is a victim: The press loves a victim. The veteran has bad dreams, say the jello writers, is alienated, may be hostile, doesn’t socialize well — isn’t, to be frank, quite right in the head. But perhaps it is the veteran’s head to be right or wrong in, and maybe it makes a difference what memories are in the head. For the jello writers the war was a moral fable on Channel Four, a struggle hinging on Nixon and Joan Baez and the inequities of this or that. I can’t be sure. The veterans seem to have missed the war by having been away in Vietnam at the time and do not understand the combat as it raged in the internecine cocktail parties of Georgetown.

Winner


Women's Rights


Iran

Imprisoned Pastor Andrew Brunson Writes Moving Song to God
Excerpt: “You are worthy, worthy of my all / My tears and pain I lift up as an offering / Teach me to share in the fellowship of your suffering / Lamb of God you are worthy of my all,” say the lyrics. “I want to be found worthy to stand before you on that day / With no regrets from cowardice, things left undone / To hear you say, 'Well done, my faithful friend, now enter your reward' Jesus, my Joy, you are the prize I'm running for,” the lyrics continue.

Religious Freedom

Want to escape poverty? Replace pictures of Jesus with Xi Jinping, Christian villagers urged

Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe military 'SEIZE POWER' holding Robert Mugabe as army accused on TREASON

I want the truth

Hannity to Moore: I Want Answers! I Think I’m Entitled! I Want the Truth! By Jim Geraghty
Excerpt: Colonel Jessup was right; we can’t handle the truth. The truth is that it’s very likely that America’s favorite sitcom dad of the 1980s spent many years slipping drugs to unsuspecting women, that Kevin Spacey might as well have never broken character, that much of Hollywood knew one of its most powerful and hailed producers was a serial predator and looked the other way, that Fox News permitted and enabled a frat-house atmosphere of harassment that started at the top, that the Catholic Church covered up horrifying cases of child abuse, and in the 1990s many Americans voted twice to make a rapist the President of the United States. Is it any wonder that given the option of a soothing, reassuring lie — that the leaders they’ve put their faith in are genuinely good people — so many people choose to believe the lie?

Ethanol

As ethanol cropland grew, carbon releases undercut climate goal, study says
Wait...wasn't ethanol pushed because it was GREEN? ~Bob

Medal of Honor

Finally recognition for something that happened in Laos.--Del
https://www.cbsnews.com/videos/medal-of-honor-awarded-to-retired-army-capt-gary-rose/

Monday, November 13, 2017

Slavery

Is The United States’ History Of Slavery And Racism Worse Than Other Countries’?

Security Important?


Difference


Roy Moore & Bill Clinton

Roy Moore and Our Faith in Our Abilities to Assess Others’ Character. By Jim Geraghty
Excerpt: Gloria Steinem responded to the allegations against Bill Clinton with a position some characterized as a “one free grope rule”: if a man backs down after making one undesired sexual advance, he has done nothing wrong. It is not surprising that if you institute that social more for a president you like, a lot of powerful men will believe that rule applies to them, as well. ... The Catholic Church deserved the public scorn it received for the abuse scandals in past decades, and evangelicals are going to get a lot of grief for excusing Moore’s behavior. But if we’re handing out public derision for religions mistreating women and excusing sexual abuse, let’s not avert our eyes from a faith that condones punishing rape victims by lashing them and in some cases stoning them to death.

After Studying the Lives of 724 Men for 79 Years, Harvard Reveals the 1 Biggest Secret to Success and Happiness

After Studying the Lives of 724 Men for 79 Years, Harvard Reveals the 1 Biggest Secret to Success and Happiness
Excerpt: After poring through a mountain-load of data, obtained from in-person interviews, questionnaires, medical records, etc., researchers concluded that close relationships are what make men happy, and that social ties shield people from life challenges while improving mental and physical health. (I've always said the secret of happiness is having something--perhaps several things--that you care about more than yourself. ~Bob)

Gender not determined at birth?

Republicans, Democrats have starkly different views on transgender issues
Excerpt: The survey also finds that Democrats with a bachelor’s degree or more education are more likely than other Democrats to say a person’s gender can be different from the sex they were assigned at birth. About three-quarters (77%) of Democrats with a bachelor’s degree or more say this, compared with 60% of Democrats with some college and 57% of those with a high school diploma or less. No such divide exists among Republicans.