Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Political Digest for Veterans Day, 2009

I post articles because I think they are of interest. Doing so doesn’t mean that I necessarily agree with every—or any—opinion in the posted article.

Today is Veterans Day, marking the end of WWI on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month. I was in a London Airport some years ago, on what they call “Armistice Day” and everything stopped for two minutes while we remembered the 20 million dead, because the politicians blundered in 1914.

Mike Royko on Veterans Day
A great 1993 column by the late Mike Royko. Excerpt: So I propose that the members of Congress revise Veterans Day to provide the following: - All veterans — and only veterans — should have the day off from work. It doesn’t matter if they were combat heroes or stateside clerk-typists. Anybody who went through basic training and was awakened before dawn by a red-neck drill sergeant who bellowed: "Drop your whatsis and grab your socks and fall out on the road," is entitled. - Those veterans who wish to march in parades, make speeches or listen to speeches can do so. But for those who don’t, all local gambling laws should be suspended for the day to permit vets to gather in taverns, pull a couple of tables together and spend the day playing poker, blackjack, craps, drinking and telling lewd lies about lewd experiences with lewd women. All bar prices should be rolled back to enlisted men’s club prices, Officers can pay the going rate, the stiffs. - All anti-smoking laws will be suspended for Veterans Day. The same holds for all misdemeanor laws pertaining to disorderly conduct, non-felonious brawling, leering, gawking and any other gross and disgusting public behavior that does not harm another individual. - It will be a treasonable offense for any spouse or live-in girlfriend (or boyfriend, if it applies) to utter the dreaded words: "What time will you be home tonight?" - Anyone caught posing as a veteran will be required to eat a triple portion of chipped beef on toast, with Spam on the side, and spend the day watching a chaplain present a color-slide presentation on the horrors of VD. - Regardless of how high his office, no politician who had the opportunity to serve in the military, but didn’t, will be allowed to make a patriotic speech, appear on TV, or poke his nose out of his office for the entire day. Any politician who defies this ban will be required to spend 12 hours wearing headphones and listening to tapes of President Clinton explaining his deferments.

Film shot in Vietnam by a Marine buddy
I didn't know it was possible to see the film I contributed to the Texas Tech archives from the "leftover" cans of motion picture stuff that somehow came home with me, but the link below will take you to one of the reels of film from then. It is uncut, unedited, uncorrected, and of course with no sound, so sections of it are not clear, etc, but there are plenty of images from I Corps in '68 that will be very familiar to those who served in Nam. Including part of a firefight, and a variety of everyday activities from that time. It's 21 minutes of history.... that we were all part of. Happy Birthday, Marines! ~Del (Gentlemen now abed….shall think themselves accursed they were not here, and hold their manhood cheap, when any speaks who fought with us…)

Obama says he wants to visit Hiroshima in future
Another apology for America coming up. What he should say is that “We are sorry that the atrocities by the Japanese Government of that time, from the sneak attack on Pearl Harbor to the Rape of Nanking to the Bataan Death March to the torture and murder of thousands of prisoners, to the thousands of Asian Women who were forced to serve as sex slaves for the soldiers of Japan, resulted in this terrible destruction, which was necessary to end the war and prevent millions of further deaths. Fat chance. Instead he’ll smear the WWII vets. Not that many of them left to vote in 2012.

A Clueless Commander-in-Chief
Excerpt: If published reports are accurate, Barack Obama’s presidency is effectively over. Strong words? Ask yourself this: what other president of the United States would have spent almost three minutes speaking at the Dept. of Interior before getting around to mentioning the fact that twelve soldiers had been killed, and thirty one wounded in a massacre at Fort Hood in Texas? This kind of insensitivity is both infuriating and disturbing. Infuriating because reinforces the notion that we have a president whose narcissistic self-involvement borders on pathological. What in the world could have been more important than mentioning an American tragedy prior to the business at hand? Disturbing because it demonstrates a cluelessness one would think was impossible for the Commander-in-Chief of the United States military.

Matthews on Ft. Hood Suspect Warning Signal: 'That's Not a Crime to Call al Qaeda, Is It?'
Excerpt: "See - we have a problem," Matthews said. "How do we know when someone like Hasan is going to make his move and do we know he's an Islamist until he's made his move? He makes a phone call or whatever, according to Reuters right now. Apparently he tried to contact al Qaeda. Is that the point at which you say, ‘This guy is dangerous?' That's not a crime to call up al Qaeda, is it? Is it? I mean, where do you stop the guy?" (No worse than, say, calling the Abwehr in 1944, right? Besides, Homeland Insecurity was too busy keeping track of Tea Parties to worry about Hasan.)

Hasan e-mails to cleric didn't result in inquiry
Suspect in Fort Hood shootings will be tried in military court
Too bad he’s alive. They won’t have the balls to execute him, as deserved.

Muslim at Islamic Community of Greater Killeen, Texas: "I honestly have no pity" for victims of the Fort Hood jihad
Yet another Muslim didn’t get the Islam-is-a-religion-of-peace memo.

U.S.-born Islamic cleric: Nidal Hasan "Did the Right Thing"
Didn’t get the memo.

Message from the Ft. Hood hero

Great Timing: AG Holder to Speak to Radical Muslim Group
Whose side are they on?

British spies help prevent al Qaeda-inspired attack on New York subway
Don’t blame Islam though. Could have been angry Baptists. Happens all the time.

Is Healthcare a Right?
They tripped up John McCain during the campaign, when he wouldn’t say it was a Right, and BO said it was. But a “right” is something we all get the same amount of. You are entitled to as much Free Speech as Chris Matthews. I get as Much Freedom of Religion as Barack Obama and his God-Damn-America pastor. Tea Party protesters get as much right of freedom of assembly as ACORN (in theory at least). Fox News gets as much Freedom of the Press as MNBC, even if the White House attacks them. And so on. So if Health Care is a Right, we all deserve the same amount of it. You and I and every poor person is entitled to the same care as Bill Gates, Obama and the members of Congress. Of course, that will bankrupt the country in a year or two, but it’s coming in the next ten years anyway. Let’s insist on our “Rights” and get it over with. Then we can start over with the Jamestown Rule. You don’t work, you don’t eat.

Hospital victims wait on
The joys of government healthcare down under. Excerpt: MARILYN Mahon and Betty Perrett are the faces of a health crisis which has reached critical intensity in our Sunshine Coast health region. The two Gympie women have been waiting for more than a year for knee replacement operations and have just been dealt another frustrating blow. Without any consultation, they and about 100 others have been scratched from the Noosa Hospital joint replacement waiting list and forced onto Nambour General Hospital’s orthopaedic waiting list. Noosa Hospital ceased providing public joint replacement surgery in December, 2008 because of limited funding from the state government, but had hoped to resume operations in 2010.The transfer from hospital to hospital has angered Ms Mahon, 61, and Ms Perrett, 66, who said they felt like they were being treated like “pieces of paper” rather than patients.

Employer taxes may spook Senate on health care
Excerpt: As the Senate prepares to vote on its version of health care legislation, one of the most contentious issues will be a provision requiring employers to provide insurance coverage. With the jobless rate at 10.2 percent and expected to climb, penalties for employers who don't offer insurance benefits will make it difficult for moderate Senate Democrats to support the plan. While most big companies provide workers with health insurance, many smaller employers do not, and they would end up having to come up with the money to either buy coverage or pay a penalty. "There is no question it will result in job loss and it will encourage employers not to hire employees," said John Goodman, president of the conservative National Center for Policy Analysis.

Canadians don't have better access to routine preventative health care
Excerpt: Canadians don't fare any better for routine preventive care. According to the Canadian group Physicians for a National Health Program (PNHP), 65 percent of Canadian women aged 40 to 64 have had a mammogram within the last five years, that's the same percentage as uninsured American women, but far below the 87 percent of insured American women who have had the procedure. Just 16 percent of Canadian men have been screened for prostate cancer, compared to 31 percent of uninsured American men and 52 percent of insured American men.

Impact of the House Healthcare bill

Senior Democrat is 'confident' that Stupak amendment will be stripped
Does that lose more “Blue Dogs?” Only need a switch of three to kill in the House.

FHA's reserve fund hits 7-year low
Agency's cash running low; automatic bailout possible if loss continues
And the bleeding continues, while Washington wants to expand the authority to force banks to loan to people who can’t pay. Excerpt: The Federal Housing Administration, which has played a crucial role supporting American home buyers after the collapse of the mortgage market, has burned through a huge cash reserve in less than a decade and could soon wind up with what amounts to an automatic taxpayer bailout if the agency's fortunes don't improve, according to a review of FHA finances.

Seven Reasons Why Congress Should Repeal, Not Fix, the Death Tax Excerpt:
Death taxes undermine job creation. Not only do federal death taxes have a corrosive effect on the virtue of savings and prudent investment, but they also directly undermine job creation and wage growth. These latter effects make death tax repeal everyone's concern. Heritage Foundation economists estimate that the federal estate tax alone is responsible for the loss of between 170,000 and 250,000 potential jobs each year. These numbers do not appear in employment statistics because the investments that would have created these jobs are never made.

Random Thoughts by Thomas Sowell
Excerpt: It was fascinating to see Barack Obama warning us not to leap to conclusions about the killings at Fort Hood, Texas-- after the way he leaped to conclusions over the arrest of Henry Louis Gates, when he knew less about the facts than we already know about the massacre at Fort Hood.

Poll on BO and the Economy
Vote early and often.

Hollywood doesn’t know Joe
Too funny

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