Sunday, June 29, 2014

Random Thoughts for July, 2014

Random Thoughts for July, 2014
Robert A. Hall

When you are in hospital, dignity is the first casualty. Once you have a cute 24-year-old blond CNA wipe your butt, you pretty much say, "The hell with it," and move on to other worries.

But there's nothing like being in hospital to make you appreciate nurses.

Iraq isn't the first country we abandoned when the political winds changed. If things get any worse there, Obama may have to skip a gulf date or fund raiser to show how serious he is.

Obama wonders why the Shi's and Sunnis in Iraq can't work together. Like him passing the largest government program since Medicare without a single Republican vote. He can shut out Republicans, but thinks they should cooperate.

It's maybe a good thing that Obama is incompetent. Think what his world view and policies would have done to the country if he was.

Democrats are blaming Bush for the unfolding disaster in Iraq. Republicans are blaming Obama. I think  dispassionate history--if such is every written again--will say both sides were correct. Lots of blame to go around. As usual, Americans--troops and civilians--will die in the future because of the misjudgments and short term political decisions of politicians of both parties. It's part of what Marines are paid for.

The different between Nixon's missing 18.5 minutes of tape and Obama's two years of missing IRS emails is that the media's agenda was to nail Nixon, but its agenda is to protect Obama. That will make all the difference.

People say that Obama isn't religious, that he only went to church in Chicago to win local support and discarded it as soon as he went national and it was a liability. Butbut I think that's not true. I bet every night he is on his knees praying that know one who knows what happened to the missing IRS emails breaks and talks, and that no copies of them turn up.

The Redskins trademark was cancelled as offensive. I bet "Polygamy Porter" from Utah is still fine--no one in DC is worried about offending Mormons. But I also bet they wouldn't license "Allah's Ale."

If I owned the Redskins, I'd change the name--The Officious Bureaucrats has a nice ring--and then I'd move the team to another city, give the fans the addresses of the Democrats who complained.

The Koch Brothers are on vacation for two weeks, so Harry Reid is asking you to fill in as the person he blames for global warming, the Middle East mess, racism, hangnail, etc. It's your patriotic duty.

People who read my blog know that I'm not worried about gay marriage. It is, IMHO, no threat to my marriage or to the country. The real threat to America is straight people having kids and not getting married, contributing to poverty, drugs, and crime. A recent study showed that 2% of kids raised in two-parent households spend their lives in poverty, while 20% of kids raised in single parent households do. The last I read was that 70% of black babies, 50% of Hispanic babies and 30% of white babies are non-marital births. White folks need to fix their culture as much as other groups do. But, that said, it seems to me that if Christian bakers who are morally opposed to gay marriage can be forced by the government to cater one, than a gay-owned bakery can be forced to cater an anti-gay marriage religious dinner.

People say they are, "Having issues" because it's not polite to say, "Things have turned to crap."

Lie and delay, delay and lie, then accuse those seeking the truth of "playing politics." The Obama doctrine.

WWII Rosie the Riveter: "We can do it!" Today's average American: "Government should do it for me." Thus freedom dies.

When Obama took office in 2009, Libya and Syria were quiet and no threat. There was fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan, but we were winning and they were no threat. Egypt was a dictatorship but an ally. When he leaves office in 2017, Libya, Iraq and Afghanistan will be Islamist states exporting terrorism. Syria may be, or Assad, who Obama said "must go," may well still be in power, but very hostile to the US. Egypt will likely be an anti-US dictatorship. This is what happens when you put a lead-from-behind community organizer in charge of foreign policy.

They held slaves, honored thieves, tortured prisoners for fun and entertainment, murdered those they attacked, raped women of their enemies for sport, and people could often find their villages by the stink because they piled-up garbage and rubbish in their immediate environment. War was endemic and whenever possible they conquered and destroyed their neighbors, taking their women, lands and goods and enslaving the children. Women were second class citizens at best and the average citizen had no political freedoms, but had to do as bade by the ruler. Why would you want to name a sports team after Native Americans? I know, I know--it was their culture, and all cultures are equally valid. Except, of curse, any culture based on western civilization.

When the government shuts down a 16-year-old girl's hair braiding business because she hasn't gone to cosmetology school, or a 12-year-old's lemonade stand because she doesn't have a food service license, in what sense are we still a free people?

We started to lose America when people stopped working hard so their kids would have better lives and started working only so they could have great vacations, smart phones and designer clothes.

There was a time when the elites, such as the Ivy-educated and famous athletes, joined the military and served the nation. For example, Ted Williams was shot down in Korea, and the New York Giants lost a good running back on Iwo Jima. Now they think that serving in the military is only for the little people, those who can't get real jobs. No Republic can survive such a disconnect between those who benefit the most and the general public.

When the choice is to vote for or against legislation that will make the country or economy worse in five years, but win votes in November because it sounds good, guess which way both Democrats and Republicans are likely to vote?

People tell me I'm smart, but I read enough first-class intellects like Thomas Sowell, Walter Williams and Ben Carson, and know enough of folks with first class intellects in the associations I have managed that I know my intellect is at best second class. That's been okay, because 85% of the rest are third or fourth class, so I've made a good living. Maybe if I had more intellectual rigor...

Democrats went nuts when Rand Paul suggested trading five of them for the Marine in Mexico, because they said Republicans were comparing them to the Taliban. And everyone knows that only Democrats like Harry Reid are allowed to compare opponents to terrorists. Of course, Reid was serious, while Paul was joking, but no matter.

Things that happened 50 years ago in Marine Boot Came or Vietnam seem like yesterday. But what I had for lunch yesterday I have trouble recalling.

Obama's "War on Coal," is actually part of the Democrats' #WaronthePoor. The poor will find that driving, heating their homes and everything from food to clothing costs more as Obama drives up energy costs. But they don't know economics any better than he does, and will still thing he's their savior.

We are fast reaching the point where citizens will fill out as few forms and share as little information as possible with our government, on the theory that what bureaucrats don't know about they cannot screw up with regulations and petty requirements.

Since most university professors are progressives and believe in fighting inequality by spreading the wealth around, I propose an experiment. We apply this principle to professors' salaries and benefits. it is clearly unfair that a full professor makes more money than an associate or adjunct professor, just because the full professor has more experience, more education and probably works more hours. That's the excuse for why men get paid more than women in the private sector, which they reject as progressives. And why should a PhD in neurobiology get paid more than a teacher with a masters in music appreciation? It's clearly not fair. From now on, everyone who teaches at a university should be paid the same regardless of experience, field, education and training or hours worked. End income inequality at the universities! If it works well there, maybe we can try it in other places.

Heard a guy on TV say, "Money is not an issue." If I won, say, $100M in the Powerball, and was treating someone to breakfast at a diner, I might say that. But probably not.

I like the rich, but not because I'm one or because I'm a Republican. I like them because they benefit me. Say a guy is worth $50M. He has to do something with the money. He can invest it in companies, trying to make more. This lets the company expand, providing more jobs directly and indirectly and improving the economy. Or he can put it in the bank--and the bank can lend it to people who want to buy house or cars, or start businesses. This leads to the same jobs boost for the economy. He might even spend it on lavish homes, cars, jets and vacations. But again, these things create jobs and thus help me by making the general economy better. Only if we drive him to stash the money overseas do we all lose these potential benefits.

With help from a sycophantic media, the Democrats have convinced the public that the Republicans are the "party of the rich." In fact, both parties are the party of the rich. People who pay $35,000 for a dinner to hear president Obama talk about "income inequality" are not making minimum wage. Both parties get money from wealthy donors, though it is often different donors depending on the party. Trial lawyers like John Edwards are wealthy and support Democrats because Democrats protect them. Wealthy doctors tend to support Republicans. Of course, some wealthy principle-free donors (like, say Wall Street) play both sides, hoping for influence regardless. I can still tell you the names of two donors who gave ($50 and $100) to both me and my opponent in 1974, though not the names of my other donors. It pretty much killed them with me.

Okay, in the 2008 election, Hillary Clinton listed a number of $1,000 contributions from Chinese immigrants making about $10,000 a year. Everyone knew that was just a bundler getting around the campaign finance laws to funnel her big money, using people who couldn't speak English to hide it. But the media didn't care, because she was a "progressive."

Statists saying that hyper-inflation in Zimbabwe or economic collapse due to debt and government spending in Greece is bad, but these things can't happen here, is like a teen saying that he knows drugs have destroyed a lot of lives and killed many people but it can't happen to him, because he's special.

Want to be sure your kids have ugly lives? Fill them with unearned self-esteem. Few things in life give more satisfaction than the things you do or earn for yourself.

When I got out of the VA Hospital after 14 days, I was about 6 weeks overdue for a haircut. But whenever I went to the VA for rehab and looked around, I felt fine. Some of those old guys haven't seen a barber since the week before they got their DD-214 discharge papers.

As everyone knows, the legacy or main-stream media have been in a decline. Most blame the Internet, but I think the start of the decline coincided with the decision of most media outlets to stop reporting balanced news and to advocate for a political agenda, by spiking some stories, pushing others and shading the wording. ("Senator hall reported..." comes across differently than, "Senator Hall claimed..." or "Senator Hall admitted...") The reasons I like The Week news magazine, and that their circulation is growing, is that they present mostly very balanced reports so that it's hard to detect a bias or agenda in it.

Great quote on the Internet: "Progressive is a code word for clueless." --Karol Traven

We are lucky that in our society, there are still jobs for the semi-literate: street sweeper, newspaper headline writer, ditch digger, bill drafter for Congress...

In the hospital, I felt like Gulliver. At one point, I had at least 11 or 12 wires, hoses and tubes tying me down. Needed help just to scratch.

I think some people decide that the way to avoid working and live on the dole is to get covered with tattoos and piercings so almost no one will hire them.

If I only did what I felt like doing at any given time, about 80% of the things I've accomplished in life would never have gotten done.

I was chiding a staff member once for reading a colleague's pay stub she had found, as an invasion of the colleague's privacy. The staffer's defense was that reading it was, "Only human nature."  No sale. Human nature through the centuries has included murder, rape, pillage, war, theft, slavery and destruction. Our long climb towards becoming civilized is the result of our halting and uncertain efforts to overcome human nature.

One of the other lung transplant patients is under weight and the doctor told him to eat everything in sight. How come I never get medical instructions like that?

Years ago, I read LtGen Chesty Puller's advice to a group of young corporals on leadership. I added the comments in brackets. 1. Know you own job thoroughly. (Or they won't respect you.) 2. Set the example. (The followers won't work any harder than you do.) 3. look out for the welfare of your subordinates. (You can't build a successful team if it's all about you.) Still the best short take on leadership I have ever seen.

My wife says Islamic Supremacists who abuse and murder woman should be given sex change operations and sent home to live in their 7th century societies.

In the VA hospital, several nurses and other professionals let me know they were conservatives, but didn't talk about it, because in Madison the "tolerant" liberals would ostracize them or retaliate against them.

In the hospital, they are always announcing things like, "Code Red: fire, on the fifth floor." Or "Code Blue: disruptive behavior in Ward XX," or "Code Yellow: Obama's Foreign policy at the main entrance." (Needs the life support team.)

Still no #BringBackOurBoys hashtag from the Obamas like the one Michelle tweeted, #BringBackOurGirls, when Muslims kidnapped 200+ black school girls into sex slavery in Nigeria. Oh, wait, they were Jews--what was I thinking? Besides, for all the good it did for the girls, they might as well have tweeted Obama's latest golf scores. But the idea wasn't to win freedom for the girls--it was to win support from the mushy-headed who think things like hashtags and social media matter to armed murderers.

Obama has no problem with scandals. He just announces that the administration will investigate itself, confident that it will take a year or two and the media will divert attention. Once his investigation of himself clears his administration of any wrong doing, anyone who raises questions is accused by the media of playing politics with old news.

Liberals love veterans--just not enough that they would want their kids or themselves to ever be one. But there is an upside, even in Madison. In a store last week, a lovely girl, about 16, came over, shook my hand and said, "I just want to thank you for you service." I replied that, 'Wearing the Marine uniform was the privilege of a lifetime." Gave me a glow.

"Affirmative Action" is a racist code word.

Madison is the home of the happily-offended, intolerant, politically-correct.

Newspapers used to write at the 8th grade level. Now it's closer to The Little Engine That Could level. Thank the teachers' unions. We cannot fix the schools, or the VA or any level of government unless we break the public employees' unions. Before they break the government. It may be too late, of course.

Regardless of the issue or which side you are on, if you haven't studied the data, and not just the cherry-picked data of your side, you may have an opinion, but it's not an informed opinion.

After what happened to Gadhafi following Obama's unauthorized, lead-from-behind war turned Libya into a terrorist haven, and got both Gadhafi and our Ambassador murdered, why would anyone think Assad would not fight to the death to hang on in Syria? And why would a rational person want him to go, giving al Qaeda another stronghold?

At five terrorists for one soldier, the Taliban should be incentivized to help Obama meet his goal of closing Gitmo.

A lot of folks say, "I'm doing the best I can," when they aren't.

Maybe it's time for amnesty and a path to citizenship...for unborn babies.

Those who think the end justifies the means often come to bad ends. But so do other folks unfortunate enough to be involved with them or in their way.

When you have several chores that must be done, do the most disagreeable one first. You'll have to do it anyway, no use having it hanging over your head.

Since the IRS "lost" the emails from Lois Lerner, I'm sure they will understand if you lose the documentation for your deductions this year.

Discrimination is everywhere. In Madison, WI Christians and Conservatives are in the closet.

If you want me to "forgive and forget," there better be some indication that you really regret your actions. And not the pious mouthing of politicians and other crooks who's real regret is that they were caught. People who feel justified in their evil--Hitler, Stalin and Mao being the archetypes in the 20th century--are pretty hard to forgive.

Some days, I think I have enough space cadets in my family to staff Star Fleet.

Maybe if we tell the rich liberals that a border fence is needed because everyone wants to live in a gated community like they do, they would understand.

Comment from the Internet: "Political Correctness is fascism pretending to be manners."

Obama is a prisoner of his base. He can't do what is needed in Iraq or Afghanistan, because his base won't let him. He can't do what is needed in energy, jobs or the economy because his base won't let him.

I'm an optimist by temperament, but a pessimist by policy. I believe in planning for the worst case. That way, if it happens, you are ready, and if not, you are pleasantly surprised.

Now that we know Hillary Clinton defended a child rapist she knew was guilty, and got him off on a technicality, we can understand why defending Bill when he had sex with a young employee in the Oval Office was easy. She's been part of the Democrats' #WaronWomen for a long time.

Like the Crusades and Slavery, Colonialism is considered one of the Great Sins of white Europeans. The first, "crusade," of course, was the Muslim attempt to conquer Europe by the sword, as they had North Africa and the Middle East. After having conquered Spain, the Muslim crusade was turned back in France at the Battle of Tours in 732, by Charles Martel and his brave warriors. But Muslim attempts to conquer Europe went on for centuries, notable at Vienna and Lepanto. Likewise, slavery was not just whites enslaving blacks who were sold to the whites by other blacks. People of every culture enslaved others, and people of every race were enslaved, often by folks of their own ethnic group. In the same time period that half a million black slaves were imported into what became the United States, a million white Europeans were kidnapped into slavery in Muslim lands. God alone knows how many black slaves were taken there when fellow blacks sold them to Arabs. But the desert was littered with the bones of those who died on the long trek. It does not excuse slavery in the US to point out that these Muslim slaves were treated much worse, but it is worth knowing. Only when western civilization, led by people like William Wilberforce and William Lloyd Garrison, turned against slavery was it slowly driven back, though it still exists in Muslim lands today. Colonialism, too, was carried out by every people and every culture, as stronger neighbors took over the weaker ones, driving them out, enslaving them or exterminating them. When the Hottentots pushed into southern Africa, they destroyed the Bushmen who were there already, killing or enslaving those that didn't escape into the wilderness. Then the Bantu moved south, and gave the same treatment to the Hottentots. Once they were supreme, Bantu clans did the same to each other with unsurpassed viciousness. They coalesced into tribes, then into "nations," the strongest of which was the Zulu--and perhaps the most ruthless in "colonizing" neighboring clans. No white colonists were involved. And the Bantu's inter- and intra-tribal violence surpassed anything done to them by white colonizers. See the excellent history, The Washing of the Spears: the Rise and Fall of the Zulu Nation.

The way things are going, I expect Obama to announce "I am not a crook" anytime now.

Saw on the net: "Rosie isn't a Riveter anymore. She now cleans federal buildings and needs a union to speak for her."

Global Warming is a useful concept. I mean, you can't blame everything on Racism, Bush or the Koch Brothers.

Yes, politicians lie to their constituents. but speaking as a recovering politician myself, I can assure you that constituents lie to their politicians when they want a favor or a vote on legislation.

Of all the places I've lived, I liked Chicago the least. That includes Vietnam. There I was allowed to carry a gun to protect myself.

I have always contended that people are "who," while things are "that." So it should be, "The player WHO hit the homerun," but "The ball THAT he hit..." But from the usage in the newspapers, I appear to have lost that battle. Like others. For years I insisted on the traditional pronunciation of "Forte," meaning "strength," as "Fort." For-tay is a musical term. But so many people used for-tay for strength, thinking it sounded elegant, that dictionaries now give it as an alternative. And for years, I insisted on "Attender," not "Attendee." A mentor mentors, a mentee gets mentored, and so on in general usage. So an "attender" goes to the meeting, while, logically, an "attendee" would have the meeting brought to him. But I got tired of fighting alone. Thus the language dies with the culture.

From the Internet: "I hope to someday be as wealthy as the Clintons were when they were dead broke."

From the Internet: "The government that just lost two years of IRS emails would like to handle your medical records from now on."

Our friend Donna sent us a lovely thank you note. I told her I was envious of her beautiful hand writing--mine was terrible even before the drugs from my lung transplant make me so shaky. I said it was from having to write, "I will not talk in class" thousands of times in grade school. "And you still haven't learned that lesson," she replied.

If you root against the Cleveland Browns, does that make you a racist?

If you think talk is cheap, you never invite Bill or Hillary to give one.
Obama's now getting credit for arresting one of the terrorists arrested in the Benghazi attack. He got reelected saying there was no terrorist attack in Benghazi.

The USA won't really be a soccer country until fans start beating the hell out of people for wearing the wrong team's colors.

From my friend Bill T: Definition of clerisy: the self hating segment of the middle class.

Saw on the Internet: "If guns were used in abortions to kill babies, liberals would love them."

"Social Justice" is a code word for, "Hand over the loot and no one gets hurt."

"Redistribution" is a code word for "Robbery."

Had a boss once who thought Who Moved My Cheese was a great book everyone should read. My summary: "Things change. You have to change to adopt to them, or die. The end." But I envy someone getting rich writing a simple, obvious fable. Need t think of one...

If the students kidnapped in Israel by Hamas were environmental activists, Obama would move heaven and Earth to get them back.

Is not a white US citizen born in Zimbabwe or South Africa who emigrated to the US an African-American?

Though i always wear a coat and tie, our church is casual. But some folks don't know the difference between casual and sloppy. Though I assume God doesn't mind, it seems disrespectful to me. If I went to church in Jeans, my Grandmother Mildred Hall would rise from her grave, grab me by the earlobe an march me home to change.

Get the collection! My “Random Thoughts” from 2008 through July, 2013 are now 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. For a free PDF of Collapse, e-mail him at tartanmarine(at) Hall’s eleven books are listed here:

1 comment:

  1. To the critics of the Hobby Lobby decision - where does the Constitution require me to subsidize the sex lives of others?