Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Random Thoughts for June, 2016. By Robert A. Hall

Random Thoughts for June, 2016. By Robert A. Hall
Feel free to post or forward.

Joey No Socks for Vice President!

In November, the American People will have to make the solemn decision as to which of two corrupt New York Liberals is the most proficient liar.

I do not believe there is anything that Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump could do or say that would make me vote for either of them. I believe they both have meretricious characters that make them unfit for public office of any sort.

Driving through Jackson, MS on our way north, we saw a two-story vacant office building off I-55. There was a huge Trump banner on the second floor. On the first floor was a large, "For sale" sign. Alas, no time to get a picture as we sped by.

People who say they aren't worth anything until they have had their morning coffee may not be worth much afterwards either.

With Trump as the nominee, no Republican senate or house seat is safe. I think President Clinton will have a Democrat Senate, maybe even a Democrat House to support her agenda.

When a business displays one of those super-huge American flags, I think it's 2% patriotism and 98% marketing. At least.

Georgia Senator George Hill, after the Civil War, described people like Trump who avoided service: "Men who are Invincible in Peace and Invisible in War."

Had a robo poll. I said I was Republican and strongly conservative, had a highly unfavorable opinion of both Trump and Clinton. Then it asked if I was going to vote for Trump or Clinton. No third choice. It hung up when I didn't answer. (They called back in person the next day. I told them what I thought of their poll.)

My brother Mark works at the local mall. Recently, going for coffee, he heard a noise behind him, saw three cops cuffing a black kid (one of the cops was also black, so maybe no protests). Kid was shouting, "Why you arresting me. I didn't do nothing." Mark turned around to go on his way, heard a thunk and turned back to see one of the cops kicking a gun away from the kid. He told his coworkers of the incident, and one said sarcastically, "Can't be--this is a gun-free zone." Maybe they need more signs, Mark replied. According to the press, it was a BB gun that looked like a real gun.

As mentioned before, Mark drives my car, complete with USMC and GOP bumper stickers, to work. The other night he came out to discover some tolerant Madison liberal had spit tobacco juice over the car. Unless it was a lost Donaldcrat who wondered in from the country and took exception to my Cruz sticker. Same bully mentality.

But one day he found a bumper sticker under the windshield wiper: Hillary for Prison in 2016. Looking for space for it.

The positive benefit of the Trump rise: we are learning which conservatives have principles and which are willing to sacrifice principle for a hope of winning something.

On our recent trip to Louisiana, the motels all had the TV channels listed in numerical order, so if you wanted, say, the weather Channel, you had to read through the full list to find it. Wouldn't alpha order seem to be a no-brainer?

Everyone can think back many years and recall times when they made an ass of themselves. They are the only ones who remember.

Most people are too busy listening to radio station WIIFM to worry about our country in ten or twenty years. (That's What's In It For Me.)

I expect that anytime now some Muslim soldiers will demand time off for Jihad. The Obama DoD will grant it, saying, "Muslims built the very fabric of the Army."

In a totalitarian system, decisions are made by an oligarchy, with their own benefit being their first principle. In a democratic system, decisions are made by a plurality of short-sighted, greedy, low-information voters who select the oligarchy that promises them the most. The elected oligarchy than seeks it's own benefit as their first principle.

If you want to understand the 2016 Trump-Clinton election, you should read a good history of the War of the Roses, when two rich and powerful families sought to be absolute rulers, with all the benefits that comes with such power. Intrigue, treachery, lying and side-switching were in vogue.

I suppose Target stores are where Obama's PJ boy gets his PJs and hot chocolate.

In the old phrase, the primary voters of both sides, "Have raised a devil they cannot so easily lay."

It is doubtless important to the survival of the race that grandparents should view any expression of mental acumen in a grandchild as the opening bud of future genius.

If we get President Hillary, the people to blame are those who voted for Trump in the primaries, not the conservatives who warned them we could never vote for him.

You might survive having your boss think that you think you are smarter than him or her...unless you really are.

If Black Lives Really Mattered, wouldn't black people give information to police about black thugs who murder black people?

If Trump gets elected president, and starts using executive orders to end run Congress as Obama has, Democrats will suddenly discover that doing so is unconstitutional.

Liberals want "safe spaces" for young women. Just not in the lady's room.

The GOP had an embarrassment of riches in presidential candidates. Now we have just one rich embarrassment.

If Trump ran an ad saying, "Big Brother for President," his supporters would say, "Yup, we need a strong hand in the White House."

Too many liberals love black folks, but don't actually know any except the lady who cleans their condo.

Liberals don't have to waste time reading books on history, economics or politics. They just recite the talking points they are handed by their betters.

Buying time may be necessary in a given situation, but it is usually pretty expensive.

Remember the old days when Hillary Clinton was against gay marriage and Donald Trump said the Dreamers had convinced him and that Romney lost because the GOP was too harsh on immigrants? Good times, huh?

Talk is cheap, but incompetence will out.

Most kids today wouldn't mind being sent to solitary confinement, as long as they had their earbuds, iPod and Smartphone. They lead solitary lives as it is. I'm glad I grew up before the constantly-wired generation.

Not that Obama is going to put women in ground combat, why not the NFL? Why not eliminate separate men's and women's teams in high school and college athletics? (Hat Tip Col. Andy Weddington)

The world is full of rock painters. In the military, that's an officer who takes over a unit that is functioning well, so to put his mark on it, he has the enlisted men paint the rocks lining the walk to HQs a different color. Rock Painters exist in government, business, politics and non-profits as well.

With Trump and Clinton the expected nominees of the two major parties, it may be time for the country to go on hospice care.

If Donald Trump is a Republican, then the Republican Party no longer stands for anything.

If a post on Facebook says "I bet I won't get one share," or "Please share to fight cancer, show your patriotism/save a puppy/show you love Jesus, etc.," I almost never share.

When a politician or a political group asks for your opinion, it's a lead in to asking for your money.

When I went to school, we had one graduation--from high school itself. Now kids graduate from middle school and kindergarten. Soon they will graduate, with a cap, gown and prom, from each semester.

Abortion is very acceptable in polite company, unlike using certain words, smoking, farting, or being conservative.

I've noticed that the elites think the F word, and often the C word are more acceptable in polite company than the N word.

The Republicans who have put their careers ahead of their country by getting in bed with Trump will discover they have damaged both, perhaps irreparably.

With home renovations, an estimate is the opening bid, not the final number.

Obama could do a lot to dispel fears that Muslim immigrants are dangerous by ordering some to be hired and trained to fly Air Force One and to protect his family as Secret Service Agents.

Feminists who are terribly upset about a supposed "rape culture" on campus and who scream victim blaming if you dare suggest that walking alone in bad parts of town at two am isn't wise, are all to ready to pile on the "She had it coming because she dressed like a slut" bandwagon when women are raped by Muslim immigrants.

One of the Donaldcrats on my blog mailing list told me that my concerns about Trump's many far left positions indicated that the medications for my lung transplant were affecting my judgment. I'm used to abuse and insults from the far left when I disagree with them, and the Trumpites are no different, preferring insults to reason. I don't have to put up with it. I make no money from anything I post. He's blocked.

I used to say, half jokingly, that I voted Republican because the Republicans were ruining the country--but at a slower rate. Having turned the party over to a life-long NY liberal with a bias for big government, a meretricious character, an aversion to transparency, and a contempt for the truth, I fear if Trump is elected the GOP will pull ahead in ruining the country..

My dear, if you are overweight and not all that pretty, a large, ugly tattoo is not going to make things better. Trust me.

Talent is often confused with intelligence. Being able to sing, dance, draw, paint or throw a ball doesn't make you wise, educated or smart.

W still see too much transfer of authority. Being a great surgeon doesn't mean you can fly a passenger jet, or vice versa. Being a successful businessman doesn't mean you can run a country, and vice versa. And being in great debt as a private individual doesn't mean you can manage the national debt.

Both the Hillary Clinton and the Donald Trump campaigns abound with the noisome stench of self-dealing, rent-seeking and special-pleading.

If you have to compare yourself to a famous person or a great hero, there is no comparison.

"One need not hope in order to act, nor succeed in order to persevere." William the Silent 1533-1584

Donald Trump makes the egotist Barack Obama look as humble as a beggar.

Clinton, Sanders and Trump are not for free markets. They are mercantilists, a system where tariffs are high so the people and merchants pay that way to support the costs of government.

When I see an infomercial on TV, or a magazine ad targeting vets or seniors, I assume it is a scam. If I'm interested in the product (rarely) they have to convince me. First I Google reviews, which knocks out 95% of them.

It doesn't matter what happened at the meeting if you get to do the minutes.

Say what you want about Islamophobia or The Religion of Peace, but if I find out the pilot's name is Mohammad, I'm not getting on the plane.

I notice that progressives of the secular humanist faith often mock the religious beliefs of Christians, but almost never those of Muslims. Could it be that they don't really believe Islam is a Religion of Peace?

Whether you view a person as a hero or a scoundrel usually depends on whether you are on the same or opposite sides.

"Thy necessity is yet greater than mine." Reported last words of the mortally wounded Sir Philip Sidney at the Battle of Zumphen, handing a cup of water to an equally wounded comrade.

Trump embraces the delusion of all authoritarians that threats, bullying and violence will eliminate resistance. In fact, it always increases it. Even in Nazi Germany there was a resistance, including The White Rose Society.

The first (Grand Union) flag of the United Colonies of North America, featuring 13 red and white stripes with a Union Jack in the top left corner where today we have stars, was produced in Philadelphia in 1775 by--as every school child knows--Milliner Margaret Manny. Peggy just didn't have the PR department of Betsy Ross, which, as we see today from Trump to the Kardashians, is what makes a person famous.

Faced with Obama, Republicans said, "Character Matters!" Faced with Trump, too many said, "Meh, not so much."

A recent addition to my political mailing list was a Donaldcrat who continually berated me that I was naive in not supporting Trump. I sent him the link to Trump's whole-owned mob subsidiary, Joey No Socks. https://www.yahoo.com/news/how-a-convicted-felon-nicknamed-joey-no-socks-153029052.html He told me I didn't understand how business was done in NY. So I sent him the article about Trumps ties to the mobsters, Anthony “Fat Tony” Salerno and Paul Castellano. http://www.dailywire.com/news/5944/report-trump-did-business-vicious-mobster-fat-tony-hank-berrien#.V0Nr_s9UqBk.facebook He wrote back: "As far as I know, “Fat Tony” and Paul Castellano are both history.  When construction funds get tight, as a developer you go where the money is, rather than not do the project at all.  I must admit, I personally went to the knee busters in Seattle in 1980, for a 125,000 sf. shopping center project I was developing.  Yes, it made me nervous until I was able to repay the loan.  But I did build the project, and the loan was repaid.   So don’t think for a minute, that Trump, just because he is famous and running for president, is the only person to use that source of funds, and it doesn’t just happen in NYC." I responded: "Ah. Explains your support for Trump. You are willing to do business with the mob, who got the money you needed from drugs, extortion, robbery, prostitution. Making you complicit in all these. Never talk to me about character or values voters--you have demonstrated you have none." He replied: "Just as I have said all along, YOU don’t have a clue about business, PERIOD.  You also might be surprised to know just how many, so called legit  loan operations, are and have been backed by “mob money”.  I do think you are a little naive , so just because I, at one time in my career, needed money that wasn’t available at the time, and I with my eyes open, borrowed, what was then known as “hard money”,  I have no character or values.  WOW !  I think I will go and eat worms." I suggested, " Get them from your mob friends--they will get them from the corpses who provided your "hard money." It's impossible to argue politics or values with people who think doing business with the Mob is normal, acceptable practice.

Earls and Cardinals, Generals and Kings, Senators and Admirals--all molder in graves about the same size as that provided to the troops who did their bidding, or the farmers, tradesmen and merchants who provided their wants.

It seems to me rank discrimination against old people, who can't eat as much, that seniors can't split the "all you can eat" special. Does Bernie Sanders know about this?

As people who read my blog know, I think that Donald Trump is a truly odious person. But if you really want to make him president, I can think of no better way than to riot at one of his rallies. It gives him even more free media coverage, and I have to believe that the vast majority of voters still think political questions should be decided by debate, not by riots, violence and shouting down opponents.

Marge, a colleague of mine, used to say that watching TV gave people the illusion that they had a social life. You can now say the same thing about Facebook.

I wouldn't be surprised is Obama ordered the military not to fight ISIS or al Qaeda on the grounds that they were non-PC and didn't include women or transgenders in their combat units. (Except for women and children suicide bombers, of course.) Why would we want to be involved with such unenlightened people?

Lord Acton described his age to be one of "abject idolatry of power, when laws both human and divine were made to yield to the intoxication of authority and the reign of will." He might have been writing about the age of Obama, Clinton and Trump.

Hillary Clinton is a proven liar. She let four Americans die in Benghazi rather than send help for fear an incident might involve Muslim civilian deaths and the Islamic world explode, hurting the administration in the election. Then she blamed it on a video, though her private emails showed she knew at the time it was a terror attack. She endangered national security by using a private email server to try to avoid having her emails scrutinized under the Freedom of Information Act, despite claiming to be the most transparent person in politics. She used her position as Secretary of State to reward countries that paid Bill Clinton handsomely for speeches, or that gave generously to the Clinton Foundation, which one charity monitor has called a slush fund, not a charity. This continued a career-long pattern of rent-seeking and self-dealing. If you vote for her for President, you are endorsing all this, and it is on your conscience.

Donald Trump has a life long history of commitment to only two values: self-aggrandizement and self-enrichment. He lies more frequently even than Clinton, often contradicting himself in the same speech, making it hard for fact-checkers to keep up. He has a history of saying whatever benefits him at the time; for and against immigrants, for and against abortion, for and against gun control, for and against Obamacare and extending it to single-payer, he will and he won't release his tax returns. He is an odious person with a meretricious character, bragging publicly about cheating on his first two wives, sleeping with numerous married women, saying sex was his Vietnam, cheating students at Trump University where he lied and said he would hand-pick the instructors, using a mob guy (Joey no Socks) to give him phony awards and other mob guys to fund his projects (they get the money to do so from drugs, prostitution, extortion, robbery and loan sharking) demeaning women and our POWs, and making fun of a disabled reporter, then lying about it. If you vote for him for President, you are endorsing all this, and it is on your conscience.

As I understand it, liberals say that gender is just a social construct, but that we should vote for Hillary because she's a woman. If that's the criteria, I prefer Caitlin Jenner.

People keep talking about Trump's hair. I could care less. It's his meretricious character, his odious behavior, his narcissistic personality, and his ignorance in every subject that a President should be knowledgeable in that makes it impossible for me to vote for him.

If you tend to expect the worst from people, you will often be unhappy. But the upside is you will be right a lot.

You have to admit the Democrats play fair. With the GOP set to nominate its weakest possible candidate, the Democrats look like following suit.

How come putting bacon at a Mosque or burning a Qur'an is hate speech, but burning an American flag is not?

Thinking of moving to California? Why not skip ten years into the future and move directly to Mexico? Or if you are really bold, you can move twenty years into California's future by taking advantage of low housing prices in Socialist Venezuela. Sure, there's a toilet paper shortage, but it's balanced out by the food shortage.

It's not hard to see why a guy would decide to identify as a woman. After all, women live an average of seven years longer than men and often can have multiple orgasms. Call it "female privilege." Example: Pulmonary Fibrosis kills at least as many people as breast cancer every year, but it is an equal opportunity killer, while breast cancer is primarily a women's disease. Thus breasts cancer gets about 80 times as much research funding. #NotAllLivesMatterEqually

Looking at a newsletter recently, two columns side by side started, "Summer is Here!" and "I can't believe how the two years have flown" If it weren't for clich├ęs, some folks couldn't write a word.

People are saying that because she edited a piece on guns to cut out the responses of the pro-gun people, Katie Couric can never be trusted again. But I never trusted her in the past....

People can have psychopathic tendencies without being full-blown psychopaths. See the presidential campaigns...

We were at Brat Fest in Madison. They had a wall with photos of the 1600+ Wisconsin guys who died in Vietnam. I was looking at it when a woman saw my cap ad thanked me for my service. I said it was a privilege to wear the uniform, that I wished I was young and healthy enough to do so again. She said I bet you could tell a lot of stories. "Yes," I replied, "and some of them would even be true!"

If you fail to follow all the rules, you will not be promoted. If you do follow all the rules you will make an ass of yourself screwing things up...

I feel no pity for political operative Rick Wiley, who was hired by Trump then fired six weeks later. As the old saying goes, "You knew he was a snake when you picked him up--you can't complain if he bit you!"

By not reporting or under-reporting facts that don't fit their agenda, the media keeps the low-info voters low info.

Sometimes, from the questions people ask me, I get the feeling I'm the only one paying attention. And I'm often sorry I am.

Bad choices have bad consequences. Unfortunately, especially for the family, friends and employers of the bad choosers.

Does Obama's transgender policy apply to prisons? Can a male rapist claim he identifies as a woman and get a female cellmate in a woman's prison? Or a female prostitute decide she's a man inside and go to a male prison?

The most over-worked folks in America must be the opposition research people at the Clinton and Trump campaigns. So much material to choose from.

Bumper Sticker Suggestion: #UnbornBlackLivesMatter

The best hand that life can deal you can lead to a terrible life, if you play it badly and make bad choices. Conversely, a lot of people have been dealt bad hands, but have had great lives by playing them well, and making good choices. and if you know history or the world, anyone born in America since WWII who doesn't have mental or physical disabilities has been dealt a pretty good hand.

The case of the glasses:
The optimist sees the glass as half full.
The pessimist sees the glass as half empty.
The executive sees unused glass capacity.
The pragmatist sees a glass that can be refilled.
The Drama Queen sees that, "Some one has taken half my drink. Who did it? I'll find out. I'm calling the police. This is the worst thing that could happen! Why do these things always happen to me? Everyone else's glass is full. I'm calling my Congressman. I'm going to sue....

Get the collection! My “Random Thoughts” from 2008 through July, 2013 are collected in this book: The Old Jarhead's Journal: Random Thoughts on Life, Liberty, and Leadership by Robert A. Hall
The Old Jarhead’s Journal is a collection of Random Thoughts on politics and life and Conservative Political Essays, mostly published on the author’s blog, including the essay “I’m Tired” which went viral on the Internet in 2009, “The Hall Platform,” “This I Believe,” and “Why I’m a Republican.” While they will be of interest to conservative thinkers, they are collected here in book form as a service to readers who wish to give a copy to favorite liberals and watch their heads explode. All royalties are donated to the Injured Marine Semper Fi Fund.


Robert A. Hall is a Marine Vietnam Veteran who served five terms in the Massachusetts State Senate. He is the author of The Coming Collapse of the American Republic. http://www.amazon.com/Coming-Collapse-American-Republic-prevent/dp/1461122538/ref=sr_1_5?s=booksandie=UTF8andqid=1304815980andsr=1-5 For a free PDF of Collapse, e-mail him at tartanmarine(at)gmail.com. Hall’s eleven books are listed here: http://tartanmarine.blogspot.com/2010/07/new-book-published.html. His blog of political news and conservative comment is www.tartanmarine.blogspot.com.

Parody: See the Liberals here in Madison

See the Liberals here in Madison

See the Liberals here in Madison,
See the Progressives down on State Street,
See the Liberals here in Madison,
And they all look just the same.
There's a tall one and a short one,
And a white one and a black one,
And a gay one and a straight one,
And they all look just the same.

And the boys all wear pony tails,
And the girls all have tattoos,
And they all are nonconformists,
And they all look just the same.
And they all went to UW,
And majored in the liberal arts,
And they all are deep thinkers,
And they all think just the same.

And they all read the Cap Times,
And they all read the Isthmus,
And they all talk about it,
And they all sound just the same.
And they're Social Justice Warriors,
And they're all brave revolutionaries,
And they all want safe spaces,
For different views scare them all the same.

And they all are for diversity,
And they all are for tolerance,
And they all hate conservatives,
And those who disagree just the same.
And they're all ignorant of economics,
And their all ignorant of history,
And they're ignorant of the Constitution,
But they all know what's right just the same.

And they all vote Progressive Dane
And they all vote Straight Democrat,
And they all love Bernie Sanders,
And they all vote just the same.
And they all are open-minded,
And they all love peace and people,
And they all love all cultures,
But hate Christian Rednecks just the same.

See the Liberals here in Madison,
See the Progressives down on State Street,
See the Liberals here in Madison,
And they all are just the same.
            Robert A. Hall
            Tune: "Little Boxes"

Monday, May 30, 2016

he Wall

                                    The Wall

He traces names, maneuvering the chair
against the slope. The panels stretch out black
and still. Each year he vows he’ll not be back,
but every bitter April finds him there.
The first few names of friends are low. But four
are cut up high, and he would need a leg
to stand and trace them. So he has to beg
for help from strangers innocent of war.

Some years ago he pushed his wheels to where
the leader lived. He’d stared across the lawn
beyond the bars—the tourists had all gone—
then cursed and spat upon the ground. A pair
of guards had turned away without a nod.
You’d think that it would break the heart of God.

                        —Robert A. Hall


Robert A. Hall is a Marine Vietnam veteran who later served five terms in the Massachusetts State Senate. He and his wife, Bonnie, live in Madison, WI.

Sunday, May 29, 2016


By Robert A. Hall

She’s fifty-five and growing plump,
Her hair is growing gray.
She lives alone in Baltimore,
She works most every day.
She owns a shop, sells mystery books,
Candles and funny hats.
She reads three hours every night,
And talks to both her cats.
But twice a year she takes the train,
The Union Station run,
She walks the streets and smiles at all
The pomp of Washington.
And when she has her courage up,
She walks up to the Mall.
She steps around the sleeping drunks—
She’s going to the Wall.
She touches names at random ’til
At last she comes to him.
She thinks of days when they were young,
Before the light grew dim.
Her fingers trace the letters out—
They will not see her weep!
She thinks of children never born,
And promises to keep.
She thinks of empty nights alone
Through all the empty years.
“I love you still,” she mummers low,
And fights to hold the tears.
She thinks about the folded flag,
She thinks about the cost,
She thinks about a love that lasts,
And all the years they lost.
She’s fifty-five and growing plump,
But she was young one day—
Before the politicians spoke
And threw his life away.

Saturday, May 28, 2016


By Chet Nagle 31 May 2010
"From now until the end of the world, we and it shall be remembered. 
We few, we Band of Brothers. For he who sheds his blood with me shall be my brother."
  --    William Shakespeare (King Henry V)

There is a chain made of blood and iron. The heavy links are anchored in Valley Forge and stretch through Gettysburg, Normandy, Iwo Jima, the Coral Sea, and a thousand battlegrounds. New links are being forged now in the streets of Baghdad and Kabul.

On this Memorial Day, in cemeteries from Flanders to Arlington, we place flags on graves to honor warriors who made and guard that great chain. On this Memorial Day we feel the chain near us, vibrating with its awesome power—pointing to a future that promises more blood and iron.
We know that men and women are in the hallowed ground because they swore an oath to defend our nation and to uphold the Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic. Many gave up their lives to that purpose.
Soldiers, sailors and airmen who have gone before, and who serve now, have always obeyed the commands of civilians elected to high office. Today, the highest of those officials have never worn a uniform. They have never gone in harm’s way, they have never known a soldier’s fear, and they will never engage in deadly defense of the republic. Even so, those officials have also sworn an oath to protect the nation and the Constitution. So the soldiers obey.

But those who fell in great battles and in places with forgotten names are still on guard. If America’s leaders betray their solemn oaths, our fallen guardians will stir in their resting places; from jungles and deserts and ocean deeps, from one end of the earth to the other, they will rise.

In the dawn of that future Memorial Day I will hear footfalls of my risen brothers in arms beneath my window. They will march on the city, and above them there will be whispers of more phantoms in parachutes. Then they will assemble in a great formation before the Capitol. Once again their bodies will be whole, their uniforms clean, and their worn rifles and sabers will be renewed.

That morning the living will muster with the dead. Around the ghosts wearing three-cornered hats and steel helmets, Americans from every town and city will come to give their voices to the silent legion. They will demand an accounting. They will demand a rebirth of the freedom and liberty for which their forefathers fought and died.

On that coming Memorial Day.

Friday, May 27, 2016

Memorial Day

Memorial Day

The troubled world can offer no award
To you who sleep beneath the chiseled stone.
You died because we handed you the sword,
And we are free because you sleep alone.

The tides of history well may change the cause,
And time may blunt the sharpness of the debt,
For sacrifice, a nation under laws
Is gathered here today, lest we forget.

                        --Robert A. Hall

I composed this poem while marching in the Fitchburg, MA Memorial Day Parade in 1975, then used it in my speech at the upper common.

From a Vietnam Vet to Dodging Donald

From a Vietnam Vet to Dodging Donald
By Robert A. Hall

Born with a silver spoon
Forged in grandpa's brothel rooms,
You leveraged that beyond all dreams
From fools who bought into your schemes.

You cheated on your wives before
With married women by the score,
Then bragged and didn't give a damn,
Said sex was just like Vietnam.

You never served a single day,
A Rear Rank Ranger on your way,
To CIC of all our troops,
There is no low where you won't stoop.

And now my comrades fade away,
They served when Donald ran away.
Our eyes tell you we've not forgot
That we were there--and you were not.

For sex or school is not like war,
Though politics rewards the whore.
And could we now, we'd serve again.
We know who were the better men.

Robert A. Hall volunteered for the Marines on his 18th birthday in 1964. In 1966 he was part of an artillery battery at Camp Lejeune scheduled for a six month cruise in the Caribbean. Instead he volunteered for Vietnam. He led a Radio Replay Team at Khe Sanh in 1967, including a month with the Combined Action Company in Khe Sanh Village, and was fortunate that the area was relatively quiet then. After the Corps, he graduated from U-Mass in 1972 with a BA in Government and was elected to the state senate. He served five terms, and reenlisted in the Marine Reserves, where he served from 1977 to 1983, when a career change meant he had to work weekends. Permission granted to forward, post or reprint.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

It doesn't matter who you vote for in November

It doesn't matter who you vote for in November
I wrote the below in response to an email about the national debt, and decided to post it on my blog. While there, I checked my stats. Just before I gave up aggregating the news a few week ago, I was getting about 4k page views a week. I was startled to see today that in the last week I had 7k page views, including over 1k from France. I assume that my post, below, "22 Reason Principled Conservative Can Never Vote for Donald Trump" is making the rounds. But if you look at the fiscal situation of the country, it probably makes no difference who you vote for. And this is the issue that will destroy the Republic, though the Jihadists, China and illegal immigration will heavily contribute to our fiscal woes. Who uses what bathroom, though emotional, will make no difference long run.

The acknowledged Federal Debt, now I think north of $19T, is the small part of the fiscal problem. The big part is the unfunded liability, money the government has promised to spend for things like Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, SS Disability, and now Obamacare, that it does not have in the bank. This is not considered debt because, though promised, it is not owed by contract and the government can legally default on these items, creating chaos and social upheaval. (The Social Security Trust Fund is not cash, but special government bonds, which cannot be sold on the open market. The government borrowed the cash.) Social Security, now as always, is paid out from the FICA taxes taken in. When the income doesn't cover the outgo, the money to redeem the bonds must come from the general fund. When SS started, and folks didn't live as long; 38 workers supported one retiree. Now, with increased longevity and the expansion of benefits, 2.5 workers support one retiree. The average retiree now gets back much more than he or she paid in. You can graph the day not far in the future when it will be one worker supporting one retiree. I have seen estimates of the unfunded liability that run from $87T to $240T, depending on who counts, what is counted and how far out you project. Add to that the debt and unfunded liability of the states and cities, and there are not enough trees to print that much money. It is difficult for me to see how a fiscal and economic collapse, followed by social and political collapse, can be avoided. When governments can't meet their obligations, they always turn to printing fiat money, destroying the value of savings and retirement funds through hyper-inflation. Which is why I recently bought a billion dollars in Zimbabwe currency for about $8 bucks on eBay. And why it doesn't matter at all which corrupt, big-government, NY liberal you vote for in November. And why electing a true fiscal conservative could have only slowed the drive towards the cliff, not reversed it. I suggest everyone read this article, "The West and the Tyranny of Public Debt"
I addressed this problem in my short book a few years back: The Coming Collapse of the American Republic: And what you can do to prevent it. http://www.amazon.com/Coming-Collapse-American-Republic-prevent/dp/1461122538/ref=sr_1_5?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1304815980&sr=1-5
All royalties go to a charity to help wounded veterans. For a free PDF of this 80-page book you can read on your computer, write me at: tartanmarine(at)gmail.com. Forget gold--invest in canned goods and ammo. ~Bob Hall

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Book Recommendations

Book Recommendation: Matterhorn: A Novel of the Vietnam War by Karl Marlantes
I have had this excellent novel on my shelf for some time, but put off reading it due to the length. Recently, I ran into a friend, a retired Army LtCol, who suggested I read it and tell him what I thought. He found it discouraging that so many screwed up officers were depicted. So I read it. Like the author, I am a Vietnam vet; however, I was doubly fortunate. First, the Corps decided---I wasn't asked in 64--that I was going to be a Radio Relay Tech and sent me to electronics school. That meant while I was with an infantry regiment, the 26th Marines at Khe Sanh, I was with Rgt. HQ for my time in Vietnam, except for a month when my team was assigned to the Combined Action Company in Khe Sanh Ville. Secondly, Khe Sanh was pretty quiet in 1967 when I was there; I rotated home on September 10th, about four months before Tet, when things got interesting. (They was scared to attack while I was there!) So my combat experience was mostly hugging the ground at Da Nang, or Phu Bai and praying one of the incoming rockets or mortars didn't drop on me. Lt. Marlantes, conversely, was a line company infantry officer. He holds the Navy Cross, three other medals for valor and two purple hearts. This more than attests that he was in more "shit sandwiches" than are depicted in his novel. So I have not the experience to judge the accuracy of his descriptions of ground combat in the bush, but they have the ring of absolute truth to me. There is a helpful glossary at the end for the non-vet, which I didn't need, though some terminology had changed between my time and his. The thing I found most surprising was the level of racial tension depicted. In my time, there was some on Okinawa before I went down to Nam. I was in an outfit where a black staff Sergeant Russell was, I felt, marginalized by the other senior NCOs due to his race (comments were made) and I thought he was the best NCO they had. And there was a place called Four Corners where white Marines did not dare to go on liberty. But I saw none of it at Khe Sanh in 67, and Marine buddies, black and white who were grunts told me that it was nonexistent in the line companies at the time. Everyone was too busy killing NVA and trying to stay alive. But I don't doubt Marlantes. By the time I got to Lejeune in 68, things were worse there and I heard they were much worse after I got out.
            The thing that struck me about this novel was that I kept wishing those PC elitists who feel all warm and fuzzy about lobbing for women in combat should read it and imaging their daughters--or themselves--in one of the assaults by Bravo Company depicted in this book. But they won't, and their kids will never serve. Other folk's kids will die so they can feel good about being for equality. I highly recommend this book. And yes, Colonel, the Marine Corps has some great officers and NCOs I'd follow anywhere, and some not worth what we paid them. Just like other walks of life.

Book Recommendation: Great Marines of Virginia: Great Marines Book Series, Volume 1 by Meriwether Ball 

Having read and enjoyed Meriwether Ball's interesting book "The Puller Chronicles," I was delighted to get a copy of her latest book. This is a selection of short, well-written biographies of Marine icons--and Marines who should be icons--who were raised or lived in Virginia. It will be of interest to all Marines and military historians, and should stimulate interest in digging further into the lives of these Marines, especially those with heroic experiences who are little known today. I look forward to her next book. (I'm sending her my bio in case she gets around to doing a book called "Average Marines who did Nothing Special.")