Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Lots of interesting political news today


Blog Worth Doing?
Blog Readership has dropped a lot. Before the election, it was hitting 7,000 page views a week. Afterwards, not surprisingly, it dropped to 5,000. But it has continued to decline, now at 3,000 page views a week. Not sure if it's the blog or people are depressed with what is happening and giving up following the news. A couple of years ago, it took me about two hours in the evening after work. Now I get so much more input, it takes me 4-5 hours a day. And my back and butt hurt from sitting at the computer. I will be offline for about two weeks starting next week, with little email access, so there will be no (or few) blog posts in that time. Given that I'm spending 35-40 hours a week managing my health care, and that my sleep needs seem to be increasing, the blog leave little time for anything else. I will reevaluate it while I'm off line. ~Bob

General News and Comment

Important: State Dept. documents: Obama called Clinton the night of Benghazi attack - National Law Enforcement
Excerpt: After months of requests and lawsuits by non-government organizations and public-interest groups to obtain documents regarding the 2012 Benghazi terrorist attack, a U.S. federal court released new documents that reveal President Barack Obama telephoned his then-Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, which indicates that Obama at least didn't go to bed in order to wake up early for his campaign fundraiser in Las Vegas the next day. According to Fox News' award-winning Chief Intelligence correspondentCatherine Herridge on Monday, this latest document release provides information on the timing of the Obama and Clinton conversation. (I think Obama said, "Don't do anything to anger Muslims and create riots--that would hurt my reelection campaign." ~Bob

She lies. Again. Or maybe still: Benghazi emails put focus on Clinton adviser. By Michael S. Schmidt
Excerpt: Hillary Rodham Clinton told reporters last month that the memos about Libya she received while secretary of state from Sidney Blumenthal, a longtime adviser whom the Obama administration had barred her from hiring, had been “unsolicited.”
But email records that Clinton, according to officials briefed on the matter, apparently failed to turn over to the State Department last fall show that she repeatedly had encouraged Blumenthal to “keep ’em coming,” as she said in an August 2012 reply to a memorandum from him, which she called “another keeper.”

Young People Unsure How to React When They Learn This Clinton Fact: ‘You’re Changing My Opinion.’ By Jason Howerton
Excerpt: When Campus Reform correspondent Cabot Phillips quizzed young people on the lavish “cribs” of 2016 presidential candidates outside the White House, he got a variety of guesses — from Marco Rubio to Ben Carson and even Donald Trump. What the respondents didn’t realize was each of the four multi-million dollar homes featured in the quiz — valued as high as $13 million — once belonged to Hillary Clinton.

After Hillary Clinton’s Speaking Fee Was Too Expensive, Guess How Much University Spent on Chelsea Instead. By Kaitlyn Schallhorn
Excerpt: For a women’s luncheon, the University of Missouri at Kansas City hoped to procure Hillary Clinton as its celebrity speaker, but her $275,000 fee was just too expensive.
So instead, the university doled out $65,000 to book her daughter — Chelsea.

Supreme Court Disasters. By Thomas Sowell
Excerpt: Many people are looking at the recent Supreme Court decisions about ObamaCare and same-sex marriage in terms of whether they think these are good or bad policies. That is certainly a legitimate concern, for both those who favor those policies and those who oppose them. But there is a deeper and more long-lasting impact of these decisions that raise the question whether we are still living in America, where “we the people” are supposed to decide what kind of society we want, not have our betters impose their notions on us. The Constitution of the United States says that the federal government has only those powers specifically granted to it by the Constitution — and that all other powers belong either to the states or to the people themselves.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie announces his 2016 presidential campaign, becoming the 14th candidate seeking the Republican nomination.

Rick Harrison of Pawn Stars Endorses March Rubio

Worth Reading: America’s Coming Transfer of Wealth. By Veronique De Rugy
Excerpt: Case in point: the latest projections from the Congressional Budget Office. According to the CBO’s annual Long-Term Budget Outlook, if current laws were to remain unchanged, government spending as a share of gross domestic product would reach 22.2 percent in fiscal 2025, up from 20.5 percent today. By then, even under a very rosy GDP growth scenario, the debt would amount to 78 percent of the economy. To put this number in perspective, the debt-to-GDP ratio was 35 percent in 2007. In 2040, the debt could reach a whopping 103 percent of GDP. Spending on interest alone would consume 4.3 percent of GDP, a dramatic increase above the current 1.3 percent. Putting that in dollar terms, interest on the debt would jump from $235 billion to over $2.2 trillion. That’s a lot of money.

Worth Reading: The Future of Social Security. By Peter Ferrara
Excerpt: In 2008, the eldest members of the Baby Boom generation turned 62 and became eligible to collect early retirement benefits from Social Security. Shortly thereafter, in 2010, Social Security began running its first cash deficit since 1983, when Ronald Reagan worked with Congress to rescue the program from financial collapse. In order to cover that deficit and meet its obligations to current retirees, Social Security has been withdrawing money from the Social Security trust funds. Under what the government's actuaries call "intermediate" economic assumptions, the trust funds will be able to cover the deficit until 2033. After that, paying all promised Social Security benefits will require increasing the payroll tax by 50%. (The "Social Security Trust Fund" has no money in it. The government borrowed the money and put in bonds that cannot be sold on the private market. When SS needs money, it has to come from the general revenue--which if you've noticed is none too healthy. The government will print money to cover it, whipping out everyone's saving through inflation. Then comes the fiscal and economic collapse followed by social and political collapse. But in 2029, I will be 83--and dead and forgotten I think. Good luck to our grandkids. ~Bob)

Greece teeters toward debt default as E.U. spurns new bailout bid
Excerpt: Greece’s financial lifelines appeared set to expire Tuesday after European Union finance chiefs decided not to grant a last-minute bailout extension to the Mediterranean nation that is nearly out of cash. Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras on Tuesday asked for a new E.U. bailout just hours before his government needed to make a payment to the International Monetary Fund that it could not afford. But E.U. finance ministers declined to grant the request, holding a teleconference to discuss the last-ditch proposal but saying that they would not take steps to offer emergency assistance.

Excerpt: Now you would think from this bold statement that Hollande heads up a country that pays its bills to the EU on time, wouldn’t you? After all, financial pundits are all saying that if Greece leaves the EU, Spain, Portugal and perhaps even Italy could be next. No one mentions France. However, there’s a colossal French debt that no one wants to talk about, except some brave journalists like Francis Journot at the site Agora, who shows that France is actually the elephant in the EU room.

Excerpt: President Obama and German chancellor Angela Merkel agreed that it is “critically important” for Greece to remain in the euro. The two spoke on the phone on Sunday as the situation in Greece has grown increasingly chaotic over the last 48 hours. In a statement, the White House said, “The leaders affirmed that their respective economic teams are carefully monitoring the situation and will remain in close touch.”

Democrat run: America’s Greece: Puerto Rico is bankrupt
Excerpt: Reuters reports that yesterday, June 29, 2015, in a televised address, Governor Alejandro Garcia Padilla said Puerto Rico faces bankruptcy and asked that the commonwealth be allowed to restructure its debts under U.S. bankruptcy code. But Puerto Rico is not eligible for debt restructuring under the U.S. bankruptcy code because it is not a municipality. (Maybe we could sell PR to China? ~Bob)

Short Story: To Kill a Man. By Jim Webb
Webb is the Marine Vietnam vet, former assistant defense secretary and US Senator who is considering a run for the Democrat nomination for president. ~Bob

Purple Heart veteran with PTSD denied bus ride over service dog
Excerpt: A United States veteran who served four combat tours and was awarded a Purple Heart was denied a ride on a New Jersey bus due to his service dog. Wright, who suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder after serving 11 years in the Marines and Army, says the driver of a New Jersey Transit bus slammed the door on him and pit bull Tank, his registered service dog, when they tried to board last week. ... Wright said the driver told him “no dogs on the bus,” and said he was afraid of the dog and that Tank needed a muzzle before he could ride. Despite Wright showing Tank’s collar and vest, which say US Army Service Dog, the driver slammed the door closed. (I had a Pit Bull, back before they took over from Dobermans as the Scare Dog. Chesty wouldn't hurt a fly, loved everyone. A 10-pound Yorkie backed him up. ~Bob)

The Left knew he was lying: Three Obama Quotes About ‘God’ and Traditional Marriage That Bill O’Reilly Just Used to Make a Point About the White House’s Rainbow Light Display. By Billy Hallowell
Excerpt: “What I believe is that marriage is between a man and a woman,” Obama said in 2004.
In 2008, he invoked God, proclaiming in an interview with Pastor Rick Warren, “I believe that marriage is the union between a man and a woman. For me, as a Christian, it’s also a sacred union. God’s in the mix.”

Barack Obama’s Swamp of Evil: Part II
Excerpt: As I remarked in Swamp of Evil I, it may be interesting to witness the clash between Muslims and Mexicans over who gets to lord it over a dissolved United States. I have no idea where Mexican and Muslim gays will fit into this scenario, but the Left, which champions and celebrates the submission of America to homosexuality, dismisses or is oblivious to the fact that in Islam homosexuality is forbidden and gays are tossed off of rooftops or hanged as a matter of enforcement of Sharia law.

Worth Watching: What Makes America Different? By Nick Adams
Excerpt: Is America really that great? Or is the United States just like any other nation? Outsiders tend to be the best judge of character, and Nick Adams, a best-selling Australian author and political commentator, gives an outsider's view of the USA. (All the negative stuff that we hear about is enough to get me down sometimes. Below is a discussion of what's good about America from an Australian. I recommend it highly. --Del)

Video: Americans Sign Petition to Ban the American Flag. B y Philip Hodges
Excerpt: t doesn’t matter how utterly ridiculous Mark Dice gets with his prank petitions, there are always plenty of people willing to fall for his jokes. It’s hard to get through this video without laughing. In the video, he claims that in the wake of America’s Confederate flag ban, Obama also wants to ban the American flag and replace it with one featuring a pyramid, a “gay” rainbow, and an all-seeing eye, to “signify the unity in the new world order.” Whatever that means. But when you’re dealing with gullible people, or as radio host Neal Boortz calls the “dumb masses,” meaning doesn’t matter.

Walker And Unions Battle Over Teachers Tenure. By Connor D. Wolf
Excerpt: Wisconsin unions Monday are once again attacking Republican Gov. Scott Walker, this time over a proposed budget that may result in cuts to tenure for state college professors. With the upcoming budget session, the Wisconsin Joint Finance Committee is expected to propose a plan to reform the University of Wisconsin System. While it is not yet finalized, unions warn the plan will cut $250 million in funding and will remove academic protections for professors such as teacher tenure.

Brace Yourself: Salon: Animals Are People Too. By William Bigalow
Excerpt: Salon has brilliantly presented the argument that animals should be considered people, positing that the antiquated notion of a line of demarcation between humans and animals should be discarded. Dolphin scientist Lori Marino states, “Right now, there is no one besides a human who is a person. They’re all property, no matter how complex they are, no matter how much we love them. They have no inherent rights of their own.” Salon points out that orcas have “big brains, complex social structures, mysterious communications, and mind-boggling sixth sense,” and “chimpanzees and all the great apes, elephants, even cats and dogs and pigs and cattle, all have more developed emotional centers than we had previously supposed.” (If Animals are people, is eating meat outlawed.? Halal meat especially? Can a human person marry a sheep person? ~Bob)

Test Pilot Admits the F-35 Can’t Dogfight. New stealth fighter is dead meat in an air battle. By David Axe
Excerpt: A test pilot has some very, very bad news about the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. The pricey new stealth jet can’t turn or climb fast enough to hit an enemy plane during a dogfight or to dodge the enemy’s own gunfire, the pilot reported following a day of mock air battles back in January. “The F-35 was at a distinct energy disadvantage,” the unnamed pilot wrote in a scathing five-page brief that War Is Boring has obtained. The brief is unclassified but is labeled “for official use only.” The test pilot’s report is the latest evidence of fundamental problems with the design of the F-35 — which, at a total program cost of more than a trillion dollars, is history’s most expensive weapon.

Jimmy Carter: Obama’s Accomplishments On World Stage ‘Have Been Minimal’ [VIDEO]
Excerpt: Former President Jimmy Carter threw some shade at President Barack Obama, saying his successes on the world stage have “been minimal” throughout his presidency at the Aspen Institute last week.

Semper Fidelis: Remains of East TN Marine killed in WWII found on Pacific island
Excerpt: The remains of East Tennessee Marine and Medal of Honor recipient Alexander "Sandy" Bonnyman Jr. have been recovered on the remote Pacific island of Tarawa. "It was 90-something degrees on that island and I had shivers, just trying to hold back tears," Bonnyman's grandson told 10News about witnessing the find. First Lt. Bonnyman was killed in battle on Nov. 22, 1943, during an assault on Japanese forces, "…fearlessly exposing himself to the merciless slash of hostile fire as he stormed the formidable bastion," reads part of his Medal of Honor Citation. 

Patriotic Songs

Interesting: Torture Part II: Practical Advice and Future Warning. By Tom Kratman
Excerpt: We ended last week with a couple of examples of what people in certain quarters don’t want to admit to, that torture can work, effectively and reliably, to gather useful intelligence.2 Though certain intellectually dishonest lefties might sneer at a mere two examples, two is sufficient to prove the point, which is limited to, “Yes, it can work.”
This is not the same as saying that it always works, that all other methods, always fail, that it or anything else is or even can be a panacea, nor even that it should be used, generally, if it is to be used at all. The point is that it can work, that, in its simplest terms, the fear of pain and death can very frequently or even usually cause cooperation. Indeed, as the quote given above illustrates, during the Battle of Algiers, during the French-Algerian war of 1954-1962, widespread use of torture was so effective that the enemy organization within the city of Algiers was effectively destroyed.3 One has to be a bizarre fantasist, or – Lord, forgive us our redundancies – a certain kind of lefty, to believe that pain and fear cannot be reliably and effectively used to elicit cooperation.4 (Tom Kratman is a retired USA LtCol, an occasional contributor to this blog, and an outstand author of military science fiction, including the A Desert Called Peace series. http://www.amazon.com/Desert-Called-Peace-Carrera-Book-ebook/dp/B00B5HJOFY/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1426715332&sr=8-1&keywords=Peace+Kratman ~Bob)

Rising Dragon News

The Pacific Pivot: Why rhetoric simply isn’t enough. By Jim Talent and J. Randy Forbes
Excerpt: The Obama administration’s “rebalance” to the Pacific is manifestly failing to prevent Chinese expansionism. The reason is that China’s rapid military buildup is shifting the regional balance of power in their direction. Until the United States and its partners reinforce their own position in the region, China will continue its coercive tactics in the East and South China Seas, increasing the risk of armed conflict, and undermining both the rights of neighboring countries and the vital interests of the United StatesThe entire world has now heard of China’s actions across seven islets and reefs in the South China Sea and its ongoing conversion of those features into military installations. But that is just the latest in a series of aggressive Chinese actions over the last several years.

Gun News

My Dad's Shot Gun. Anon--going around the Net.
Today I swung my front door wide open and placed my Remington 12 gauge semi-auto shotgun right in the doorway. I left 9 shells beside it, then left it alone and went about my business. While I was gone, the mailman delivered my mail, the neighbor boy across the street mowed the yard, a girl walked her dog down the street, and quite a few cars stopped at the stop sign near the front of my house. After about an hour, I checked on the gun. It was still sitting there, right where I had left it. It hadn't moved itself. It certainly hadn't killed anyone, even with the numerous opportunities it had presented to do so. In fact, it hadn't even loaded itself. Well you can imagine my surprise, with all the hype by the Left and the Media about how dangerous guns are and how they kill people. Either the media is wrong, or I own the absolute laziest shotgun in the world. The United States is third in Murders throughout the World. But if you exclude just four cities: Chicago, Detroit, Washington, DC and New Orleans, the United States is fourth from the bottom, in the entire world...for murders! These four Cities also have the toughest gun control laws in the U. S. All four of these cities are also controlled by Democrats for years and years and years! It would be absurd to draw any conclusions from that fact - right? Well, this was such an interesting experiment that I am getting ready to undertake a new study...I'm off to check on my spoons. I hear they're making people fat.

POLICE: Robbery suspect shot during home invasion attempt in Louisville
Excerpt: Louisville Metro Police have arrested a Shepherdsville man officials say fired a gun during an attempted robbery at a home. Marcus Thornsbury, 20, was arrested after police say he and a co-defendant entered the garage of a home while armed with handguns, around 11:30 p.m. on June 5. Authorities say the home was located in the 11000 block of Maple Way, near Preston Highway.

One dead after home invasion in Tuscaloosa
Excerpt: The victim said that two black males kicked in his patio door to his upstairs apartment. This woke the victim who grabbed a handgun and fired at the suspects hitting one of them as they entered his apartment. One of the suspects, Courtney Delante Campbell, a 24-year-old black male was shot by the victim. The suspects immediately fled the scene and jumped off of the upstairs patio. Campbell ran a short distance before he collapsed and died from his wounds.

No charges for Domino’s driver who shot alleged robber
Excerpt: A Domino’s delivery man who shot an alleged armed robber Sunday night did so in self-defense and will not face any criminal charges, according to the Albuquerque Police Department. The man who police say robbed the pizza chain’s location near 12th and Menaul was in critical condition Sunday night, but improved to stable condition Monday morning, said APD spokesman Tanner Tixier. Police were called to a robbery in progress at the Northwest Albuquerque Domino’s around 9:30 p.m. As officers were on their way, they received calls that shots had been fired, Tixier said.

Race Card News

Obama Removes Tpp’s Anti-Slavery Clause, Then Attacks Confederate Flag As “Symbol Of Slavery”
Excerpt: Right before he publicly attacked the Confederate flag as a “symbol of slavery,” President Obama quietly removed an “anti-slavery” provision from the Trans-Pacific Partnership Trade Agreement. “The provision, which bars countries that engage in slavery from being part of major trade deals with the U.S., was written by Sen. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.),” The Huffington Post reported in May. “At the insistence of the White House, Menendez agreed to modify his language to say that as long as a country is taking ‘concrete’ steps toward reducing human trafficking and forced labor, it can be part of a trade deal.”

VIDEO: Texas College Students Want Removal of George Washington Statue: ‘He’s Like Hitler’
Excerpt: If you want to see some of the dumbest people on earth, just visit any college or university. Today’s tableau of stupid comes from the University of Texas where liberal twits are seeing a petition signed by their special little snowflakes demanding that a statue of the father of our country (that’s George Washington for those of you in Rio Linda) be removed from the campus because: RACISM!Oh, and “Hitler,” too.

Why this black defender of the Confederate flag says slavery was ‘a choice.’ By Peter Holley
Excerpt: For many Americans, the Confederate battle flag is an unmistakable symbol of slavery and oppression. But for Karen Cooper, a black woman who was born in New York but later settled in Virginia, the flag embodies something else entirely. “I actually think that it represents freedom,” the ardent tea party supporter says in a video interview that’s been making the rounds online. “It represents a people who stood up to tyranny.”

Activists Plan to Burn American Flags in New York City Ahead of Fourth of July. By Oliver Darcy
Excerpt: A group calling for the immediate disarmament of the New York Police Department plans to burn American flags in a Brooklyn park on Wednesday, just days before the Fourth of July holiday. “Disarm NYPD” announced the “Burn the American Flags” event on Facebook, inviting individuals to join the organization at Fort Greene Park to “set fire to this symbol of oppression.”

Worth Reading: For the South, Against the Confederacy. By Ross Douthat
Excerpt: I had ancestors fighting on both sides in the War of Southern Intransigence, but I identify as a Connecticut Yankee, and my fourteen-year-old self wanted to fix bayonets on Little Round Top, not charge to doom and glory with George Pickett. But I am a cultural conservative, and I think that qualifies me to say something, at least, about the question of southron “backwardness” and its implications for how we think about the region and its past. Because it’s both the case that Roberts is right — by any Whig-history standard, the American South has always been well behind the times — and the case this backwardness explains part of the South’s distinctive appeal, not only to racial revanchists (though certainly to them), but to anyone looking for an alternative to the master narrative of American history, a kind of domestic Otherland in which certain things lost in the march of progress might be found.

Language Warning: Confederate flag parade in Georgia. Wait for it....

Obamacare/Government Healthcare News

Failing Obamacare Co-Ops Offer Lavish Executive Pay — And May Violate the Law [VIDEO]. By Richard Pollock
Excerpt: Taxpayer-funded Obamacare health insurance co-op’s may be running afoul of the law by giving extravagant paychecks to their top executives, according to a Daily Caller News Foundation investigation. ... Eighteen of the 23 co-ops paid their top executives prodigious salaries ranging from $263,000 to $587,000, according to 2013 IRS tax filings.

Excerpt: Now that we have over one full year of ObamaCare under our belts, a mystery is unfolding: What is happening to employer-based benefits? Data from different sources convey widely different messages, but until we solve this mystery, it is difficult to predict the political future of President Obama’s troubled health reform law. The puzzle is obscured by the media’s focus on topline figures, which indicate significant increases in the number of insured people, including millions added to Medicaid, the joint state-federal program for low-income households. In truth, it is inappropriate to categorize Medicaid dependents as “insured” — for the same reason it is inappropriate to consider jobless people who receive cash welfare benefits as “employed.” The fiscal difference between people who depend on government benefits and those who do not is one of kind, not of degree. But how should we classify consumers covered through the ObamaCare exchanges? Are they government dependents or not? The issue is tricky.

The Supreme Court Saves The Republicans--From Themselves. By John Goodman
Excerpt: Republicans on Capitol Hill last week roundly condemned the Supreme Court’s decision to allow federal (Obamacare) subsidies to continue in the 34 states where the federal government is running the exchanges. Privately, there was a collective sigh of relief. The reason: Had the decision gone the other way, it could have been politically disastrous. If the Court had found the subsidies illegal, about 6 million people would have been in danger of losing their health insurance. President Obama would have asked Congress for a one-sentence piece of legislation — to make the subsidies legal. As the Republicans tried to construct a response, voters across the country would have discovered three unpleasant facts:

I disagree: Obamacare Now Central To 2016 Election. By Jeffrey H. Anderson
Excerpt: In the wake of the Supreme Court’s ruling in King v. Burwell, most signs point toward Obamacare becoming the defining issue in the 2016 election. That puts Republicans in an advantageous position, as it’s a lot easier to propose and defend an alternative to Obamacare than to defend Obamacare. Indeed, the Republican candidate who GOP voters — and then general-election voters — think is most able to lead on this issue, propose a winning alternative, and sign repeal legislation into law, is likely to become both the Republican nominee and the president. (I think foreign policy--Iran ISIS, Russia and China--will and should be the big issues. Debt and unfunded liabilities should be too, but the public ignores them--until the collapse. ~Bob)

Religion of Peace News

Surprise: BREAKING NEWS: World leaders extend deadline in Iran nuke negotiations
The US-led P5+1 and Iran have extended today's deadline for a deal to limit Iran's nuclear weapons capability to July 7. (More Breaking News: Sun comes up in East." ~Bob)

Worth Reading: Saudi Gazette Editorial: Time to call time on Tehran
Excerpt: IT is surely time to ring down the curtain on the endless talks about Iran’s nuclear program. The deadline for a successful conclusion is tomorrow (Tuesday) and yet again, it is going to be missed. The latest nonsense to come out of the negotiations in Vienna is that Iran’s chief negotiator, Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif told US Secretary of State John Kerry Saturday that he needed to fly back to Tehran to consult with the government there on two key issues — the extent of international inspections of Iranian nuclear facilities and the timing of the removal of worldwide sanctions that have crippled the Iranian economy. There are two crucial points here that it seems, in its eagerness to cut a deal, the Obama administration is willfully choosing to overlook. The first and most glaring is that Iran’s obligations on inspections of any part of its nuclear program are already laid down clearly in the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty to which it is a signatory. Though the small print has yet to be revealed, it looks very much as if Washington is prepared to make a special case of the Iranians. 

The ROE would change! Putin Proposes New Coalition to Fight Islamic State. Putin’s initiative comes after the failure of the U.S.-led airstrikes to dislodge Islamic State from its Syrian and Iraqi strongholds. By Mike Wheatly
Excerpt: President Vladimir Putin has reaffirmed Russia’s support of the Syrian government following a meeting with its Foreign Minister Walid Muallem yesterday, TASS reported.
Speaking to journalists after the talks, Putin acknowledged the Islamic State terrorist group remains the biggest threat in the region, and said Syria must unite with neighboring countries in order to combat it. He added that Russia was ready to facilitate dialogue between countries in the region. (Russia recently signed 6 commercial contracts with Saudi Arabia. I wondered what was up with that since the Saudis are Sunni Wahhabis, the most violent and intolerant sect in the world by far. They make up 100% of ISIS, Al Qaeda, Al Nusra, Taliban and all the other throat slicers. But now we catch a glimpse of what is happening now that the old hardliner king has died and is replaced by a more moderate king, his brother. Just as you might have suspected, the news is on the positive side. If Putin can pull this off, the old Neocon plot to clandestinely promote the Wahhabi throat slicers while pretending to save civilization may have a stake driven thru its heart. A lot depends on fate, and fate depends on the Lord. No one can say for sure whether the Almighty is on the side of the Russians. But anyone with a pulse knows that ISIS will not be defeated by the Neocons or Obama. --Don Hank)

Figures: US Helped Release Iranian Prisoners as Sweetener for Nuclear Talks
Excerpt: The Obama administration helped to secure the release of several Iranians detained in the United States and the United Kingdom, some convicted of illegal arms smuggling, according to a report that comes as U.S. prisoners languish in Iranian jails. The Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday that, as part of a “wish list” Iran presented to the United States in 2009 before the current nuclear negotiations, U.S. officials helped expedite the release of four Iranian prisoners in 2012 and 2013. Three were convicted of illegally sending arms or other banned materials to Iran while the international community sought to enforce sanctions on the country’s nuclear program.

Muslim Inmates Want the Jail to Make a Special Accommodation for Them…And They’re Suing to Get It. By Jennifer Van Laar
Excerpt: Inmates at Miami-Dade County jails have been complaining for months that the meals they’re receiving behind bars are not halal, and therefore a violation of their constitutional rights. According to News 10, seventeen Muslim inmates claim jails stopped serving halal meals in October 2014. And despite complaints and protests they’re still served non-halal meals, including during this month of Ramadan. (Halal meat is animal abuse, but PETA is too scared to say anything. ~Bob)

Victim of Palestinian Authority Shooting Attack Dies. Malachi Moshe Rosenfeld, 25, lived in the community of Kochav HaShachar in Samaria. By Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu
Excerpt: Malachi Moshe Rosenfeld died late Tuesday afternoon from gunshot wounds inflicted by two Palestinian Authority terrorists Monday night. There others were wounded in the attack that has not been condemned by Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas. The IDF believes that the murder, unlike several “lone wolf” attacks, was carried out by a terrorist cell that is responsible for previous attempts to kill Jews.

Excerpt: The Al Nusrah Front, al Qaeda’s official branch in Syria, has released a 43-minute documentary titled, “The Heirs of Glory.” The video tells the history of Islam from Al Nusrah’s perspective, culminating in video footage of the 9/11 attacks and audio clips from Osama bin Laden’s speeches. Al Nusrah highlights the footage of 9/11 after replaying a threat made by bin Laden in 1998. Bin Laden claimed at the time that “the joint Crusader-Jewish forces” have been responsible for all of the recent “aggression” against Muslims lands.

State Department Ejects Free Beacon Reporter from Briefing
Excerpt: Officials with the Department of State threatened to call security Monday on a Washington Free Beacon reporter who was attempting to report on a briefing held by senior Obama administration figures in Vienna on the eve of an expected nuclear agreement with Iran. Two State Department officials booted the Free Beacon from a room where Wendy Sherman, the undersecretary of state for political affairs, was talking to reporters, despite the Free Beacon’s being credentialed by the Austrian government for the ongoing Iranian nuclear talks. Western observers present in Vienna for the talks linked the State Department’s behavior to jitters over media coverage revealing a still growing list of concessions being made to Iran by the Obama administration. Melissa Turley, a State Department official, approached a Free Beacon reporter and demanded that he leave the room. “You’re not registered with the U.S. press,” Turley said after being informed that the Free Beacon was attending the event.

US Restores Bahrain Military Aid Despite Human Rights. Obama determines Bahrain, which houses key U.S. Navy and Marine Corps operations in the Middle East, has made some “meaningful progress” on human rights reforms. By Marcus Weisgerber
Excerpt: The Obama administration will restore security aid to Bahrain, the key American military ally in the Middle East that has conducted airstrikes against Islamic State militants and houses a major U.S. naval base across the Persian Gulf from Iran. The renewal comes even though the State Department says human rights remain inadequate in the kingdom following the regime’s 2011 crackdown on Arab Spring demonstrators which led to the U.S. ban.

Netanyahu to Gaza flotilla: Surely you got lost, meant to help butchered Syrians. By Robert Spencer, JihadWatch.org
Excerpt: Israeli aid to Gaza amounts to 500,000 times more than the flotilla aid. The supporters of “Palestine” are outrageous moral hypocrites. ... Israeli officials reiterated on Sunday that Jerusalem has no intention to allow the boats to reach Gaza, and that the organizers are well aware that there is a legal naval blockade of the area. A “flotilla” of four small boats is expected to sail to the territorial waters outside Gaza by at least Wednesday, and possibly as early as Monday, with Israel making clear that it has no intention of allowing the vessels to break the naval blockade and reach the Gaza Strip.

Islamic State releases audio said to be of Kuwait terrorist. Clip posted online after Saudi killed 27 in mosque bombing; reportedly warns Shiites of retribution for ‘insulting Islam’
Excerpt: The recording — a statement designed to be released after the attack – was said to consist largely of verses from the Quran, and was released Sunday via social media channels popular with the radical Islamic State group. In the clip, the speaker can apparently be heard criticizing Shiite Muslims, saying they should expect revenge for what he called insults to Islam. (As the Islamic State releases a video filled with Qur’an verses, London Mayor Boris Johnson writes in the the Telegraph: “Islamic State? This death cult is not a state and it’s certainly not Islamic: We must settle on a name for our enemies that doesn’t smear all Muslims but does reflect reality.” Obviously Boris Johnson wouldn’t recognize reality if it ran a dull, rusty knife through his neck, chanting Qur’an verses all the while. --Robert Spencer, JihadWatch.org.)

Where Is the Pope's Encyclical on Christian Persecution? By Raymond Ibrahim
Excerpt: All this leads to the following question: Where is Pope Francis' encyclical concerning the rampant persecution that Christians—including many Catholics—are experiencing around the world, the Islamic world in particular? To be sure, the pope has acknowledged it. On April 21, during mass held at Casa Santa Marta, Francis said that today's church is a "church of martyrs." He even referenced several of the recent attacks on Christians by Muslims (without of course mentioning the latter's religious identity). 

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=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1304815980&sr=1-5 For a free PDF of Collapse, e-mail him at tartanmarine(at)gmail.com. Hall’s eleven books are listed here:

Random Thoughts for July, 2015. By Robert A. Hall

The BDS movement is doing all it can to aid the Muslims in their efforts to exterminate the Jews in Israel and the Middle East. But "BDS" doesn't have a real ring to it for marketing purposes. How about changing it to something snappy like "Operation Auschwitz" or "The Real Final Solution." The Islamists will love it.

Obama blamed the murder of nine folks in a SC church on the lack of gun control laws because he couldn't figure out a way to blame it on Bush or global warming. Those are his three go-to excuses for anything bad that happens. There is little evidence that strict gun control in places like Chicago, NY or Baltimore make those cities safer than Charleston, SC.

The Confederate Battle Flag (as opposed to the Confederate States Flag) is again an issue after the racist murders in South Carolina. I have no brief for that flag. My Great Great Grandfather, Sgt. Oliver Vernal, fought through the war with the sixth Connecticut Volunteer Infantry, and was badly wounded twice. Given that he had no children at the time, I almost lost my life putting down that flag. My suggestions is that blacks take the Confederate Flag, change the blue stripes to black, and put the legend "Rebel Against Racism" across it and claim it for their own in flags and jacket patches.

The whole issue of the Confederate Battle Flag is one of emotion and symbolism--the kind of issue beloved by politicians and the media, who find it too hard to try to explain the real issues of economics and international strategy to the people who are constantly being dumbed down.

Guns don't kill people--flags kill people.

The Grievance Industry is forever. As a Yankee whose great great grandfather fought and was wounded twice putting down the slave power, I have no interest in protecting the Rebel flag. But let's be clear that removing the Confederate Battle Flag from public grounds in SC and elsewhere will not end the debate, as race baiting agitators will find something else to be offended by, something else to demand. Just as banning dogs, including seeing-eye dogs in Muslim areas will not end Muslim agitators demands and offence-taking. They will find other demands, other things that give offence. You can never win by appeasing such people.

The Confederate Battle flag offends some--but not all--blacks, and must come down. The Cross on Churches offends some Muslims. The Gay Pride flag offends some Christians. Must they come down? The American Flag offends many militant Hispanics, and has already been banned in some schools. Where does it end?

We need to start a united movement to ban that offensive image of hate and murder, Che Guevara's picture. Tee shirts with pictures of the ruthless murdering Communist bastard Che offend me greatly--get them out of stores! "Some Quotes: “What we affirm is that we must proceed along the path of liberation even if this costs millions of atomic victims.” “To send men to the firing squad, judicial proof is unnecessary … These procedures are an archaic bourgeois detail. This is a revolution!” “We must eliminate all newspapers; we cannot make a revolution with free press.” --Che Guevara

Boys used to want to grow up to be soldiers, sailors, Marines, airman, cops, firefighters or cowboys so they would be heroes. Apparently if a boy today wants to be a hero, he has to grow up wanting to be a girl.

I think the GOP needs to nominate a Lincoln for 2016, because the next president is going to inherit a mess compatible with the one Buchanan left in 1861.

From my friend George: I'm less concerned with the Obamacare ruling than I am with long term effects of lowering of standards by SCOTUS on what constitutes valid law.

Nothing will bring peace to the middle east. If the Muslims destroyed Israel and slaughtered all the Jews--an increasingly likely prospect--they would still fight each other over the correct interpretation of the "perfect and unchangeable Qur'an." Since it urges Muslims to fight infidels until they are destroyed or submit, and anyone--Shia, Sunni, Druze, Alawites, Ahmadis, etc.--who disagrees with them on points of doctrine is an infidel and apostate, they will fight and murder each other as long as Islam exists.

I suggest we rename the "War on Terror" the "War of Slow Learners."

With all the rain and flooding in Texas and Oklahoma this spring, I'm surprised the Obama EPA hasn't declared both states "protected wetlands," off limits to farming, ranching, oil wells and construction.

I go to Physical Therapy three times a week. The other morning I was too tired to go--but I went anyway. If I didn't go when I was too tired, I'd never go.

If you are thinking of a career in government at the perk-rich level, or looking for government support for some expensive program that benefits you, this might be a good time to make a large donation to the Clinton Slush Fund Foundation.

I think we might date the decline of the West to the moment when the "V for Victory" sign was changed to be the "Peace at any Price" sign by the surrender monkeys on the left.

The folks calling for the tax-exempt status to be pulled from churches that don't support gay marriage should consider that social conservatives could get the White House, the Congress and a SCOTUS majority and pull the tax exempt status of churches that do.

I find that lately I can get by with two hours sleep a day--as long as I get another nine at night.

Iran does whatever possible to undermine the West and Israel. Making a deal with Iran is exactly like making a deal with Hitler or Stalin or Ho Chi Minh. Iran will keep it until it decides that it doesn't want to.

From a retired Marine friend: My random thought that struck at 0100 (after mulling over yet another service call yesterday that, when answered, began in Spanish)... "If you do not speak nor understand English, Press 1 for the nearest immersion course near you."

"My husband and I are either going to buy a dog or have a child. We can’t decide to ruin our carpet or ruin our lives." -- Rita Rudner

I think I'll try out for Army Ranger School. I mean, if they can't discriminate because of gender, they can't discriminate because of age and health, right?

The results that leftist politician seek through progressive policies and not a better environment, less racism, better policing or a more stable world. The results they seek are votes and money from the progressive faithful. If they get these, other outcomes don't signify at all. Just "collateral damage" to the country in pursuit of the coming progressive utopia.

I believe if Nixon had had the unwavering support of the media and the senators of his party, as Obama does, he would have survived Watergate.

You want voter ID or the Keystone Pipeline? Get serious--a $5,000,000 to the Clinton Foundation should do it.

Some days I think the Obama Administration is just a sheltered workshop for people who have lost all touch with reality.

Thanks to Caitlin Jenner, leftists now say that gender is an artificial construct and you are what you claim to be. Doesn't that undermine Hillary's "I may be corrupt but I have a vagina" campaign for president? I'm thinking of running as a black, gay, woman.

I don't want to say Hillary is crooked, but when she dies, they will have to screw her into the ground. (Old political joke.)

They are now saying that Rachel Dolezal was one of many people born #WrongSkin, that is white people who identify as black. I feel their pain. I was born Wrong Economic Class. I was clearly intended to be the wealthy playboy son of a rich Wall Street hedge fund manager. This idea may solve the problem of racism. If you can be whatever gender or race you want, we should all be black. Since liberals say blacks can't be racists, problem gone.

We won't officially be at war with ISIS until Jane Fonda goes over to lend them support.

If the Obamacare or other government databases ever crash, they can always recover the data by buying it from the Chinese.

Between us, Donald Trump and I know everything there is to know in the world. He knows everything except that he's an asshole--and I know that he's an asshole.

If you are contemplating a crime involving teens--statuary rape, selling them booze, etc.--you are going to get caught because they are going to talk. I can promise you that.

Say, if liberals are right and gender is "an artificial construct," there is no such thing as sexism....

I wonder what would happen if every general and admiral submitted their resignations at once saying we cannot be responsible for defending the country under these PC conditions.

The left doesn't like GMOs--Genetically Modified Organisms. But they think SMP are the wave of the future. That's Surgically Modified People.

On my way to the VA for rehab recently, I was behind a progressive's car. He had a peace sign and "Recall Walker" and "Bernie Sanders 2016" bumper stickers. I passed him so he could read some of my bumper stickers: "Pacifism is a luxury paid for by warriors," "Scott Walker for President," and "Except for Nazism, Fascism, Communism and Slavery, War has Never Settled Anything." You have to have some fun.

First they came for the trans-fats, and I didn't eat trans-fats, so...

Note to political pundits on both sides of the red-blue divide: The use of abusive slurs, intemperate language and ad hominem attacks doesn't strengthen your case. It weakens it by making the other side look civilized and reasonable.

If we get a GOP President in 2016, I wish I had the money to be a crony or a henchman. Certainly cheaper than filling the same role for Billery. Alas, I don't even have the energy to be a minion anymore.

Apparently, some folks believe that the most important qualification to be elected president in 2016 is to be the wife of a former president. In that case, I prefer Laura Bush.

The old racist canard supporting colonialism was that the black, brown and yellow people of the third world were not fit for self-government. Looking at the kleptocracies that have replaced most colonial governments, there may have been some truth to it. But looking around our country at how knowledgeable the people are about pop culture like reality shows, and how ignorant they are of government, policy and politics, there is little reason to believe that our people are any more fit for self government. And I think they are losing it.

The media prefers small, flashy, easy-to-understand stories (Cat saves elderly woman from burglar!) to large, hard-to-understand issue that require in-depth reporting (China works to balance economic growth with military strength.)

I've been trying to imagine telling my senior DI, Sgt. William H. Harris, at Parris Island back in 1964 that he needed to issue trigger warnings because he was committing microaggressions on the recruits that made us feel uncomfortable. There would have been a very ugly macro-aggression! On me.

If Obama hates colonialism, why does he support maintaining Iraq, a country created by Britain after WWI out of three Ottoman colonial fifes, as one country?

Not wanting to be murdered by Muslims is apparently proof of Islamophobia.

Prediction: Transsexual athletes will soon dominate some women's sports.

My wife and I were having lunch in a local restaurant recently. In the both behind us were four elderly ladies (that is, older than us!) having lunch and gossip. Responding to what was said about a woman not present, one replied, "Well, if you're not a little weird after 25, you don't have a personality!"

The liberal idea of political discourse seems to be to call anyone who disagrees with them on an issue a nasty name: racist, sexist, hater, Uncle Tom, Islamophobe, etc.

Recently I read in an otherwise-excellent history that a defending force was "decimated to the last man." Sigh. Decimated means ten percent were killed, it is not the same as annihilated or slaughtered. I believe it comes from the Roman practice of executing every tenth man in a legion that performed badly in combat.

White on black violence is racist. Mentioning the more common black on white or the much more common black on black violence is racist, so is ignored.

We may often have common interests with communist or Muslim controlled states. We should never delude ourselves that this makes them our friends.

The American Muslims who go to fight against us in Iraq and Syria are traitors in every sense of the word. Are we revoking their citizenships, or is it Islamophobic to do that to someone who wants to kill you?

Pro Tip: If you are eating wasabi peanuts and your eye itches, don't scratch it.

A book I was recently reading reminded me that when the Apollo 8 astronauts circled the moon in December, 1968, they read a Christmas greeting to the country, including reading from the Book of Genesis. Imagine the outrage from the Freedom from Religion Foundation, CAIR and other atheist and liberal groups if that happened today. They'd be court-martialed.

Islamist leaders like those in Iran say the Holocaust is a hoax. So how come Muslims in Europe chant, "Jews to the Gas"?

Racism hurts. So does being falsely accused of racism to make political points.

The proof that for progressives the state is their god is that they think they can, like Jesus, feed a multitude with five loaves and two fishes. The harsh laws of economics may not apply to God, but as we always find to our cost, they apply ruthlessly to all humans, including the progressive elites.

We have raised generations who demand and expect ever more in largess from the federal and state governments. We are now importing millions of illegal immigrants with the same expectations. But the iron laws of economics will not be denied. When "more" runs out in the fairly near future, it will get very ugly.

When a Muslim sociopath whose heart is full of hate for non-Muslims murders infidels in the name of Allah, citing many suras of the Qur'an as his justification, the media and government officials are quick to call it a "lone wolf" attack, nothing to do with Islam, and we cannot blame all Muslims for the murders. When a white sociopath whose heart is full of hate for non-whites murders blacks and is found to have been immersed in racist propaganda, the media, government officials and the SPLC-Al Sharpton axis are quick to say all whites are racist and must be punished in some way--reparations, harsher restrictions on their Second Amendment rights, etc.

From the number of stories I carry on my blog about robbers, burglars or home invaders shot dead by armed citizens, armed robbery is becoming a very risky career.

Obama says Obamacare is "here to stay." Not so. It's only here until the money runs out and the fiscal and economic collapse happens. Buy ammo and canned goods.

The leftist zeitgeist: "I'm offended, therefore I am."

Too many politicians on both sides are happy to accept the tradeoff of long term damage to the country for short term gain in votes. That's why we are where we are.

I support gay marriage, though I think it should have been done by the legislatures elected by the people--it was trending that way. Now I expect to see lawsuits by Muslims and Mormon fundamentalists to legalize polygamy.

From my friend George: As much as I distaste our history of slavery and racism, how much difference is there between tearing down our monuments and statues, and, say, ISIS and Taliban doing the same in their lands?

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=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1304815980&sr=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.