Thursday, July 31, 2014

We Need Less Spin

I am not talking about the political spin that the "talking heads" spread so thickly on Sunday. I do not watch those shows. I prefer chasing down the news myself. I do not need some over-ripe consultant or over-the-hill politician to tell me what I should think. I can do my own thinking, thank you very much.

The spin we need less of is that of our country spinning out of control. We are living with a rate of domestic political scandals that I have not seen in my lifetime. We are almost equaling this in international crises. And I am willing to play the blame game, for those in American politics, that I think bear the greatest responsibility.

As our President sets the tone for the governance of our country, Barack Obama tops my list for blame. I give a strong second place to Harry Reid as he has held the Senate in irons for almost six years. Third place is a tie between John Boehner, for passivity and abetting, and Eric Holder for ignoring a ton of things that an honest AG would not have ignored. He does this to cover the President's back and protect the Democrat party, of course.

Fourth place gets very crowded. The foolish Republican party that can't get together on an intelligent course forward and unify behind it. The avaricious Democrat party who seem willing to sell their grandmothers to keep and gain power. 

I must give dishonorable mention to Joe Biden and Nancy Pelosi, who's ability to say the most bizarre thing with a straight face defies the imagination. I have to believe that they actually believe what comes out of their mouths. 

Then there are so many bit players like Sheila Jackson Lee and Elijah Cummings that supply comic relief for the tragedy that our country is becoming. 

I have to give a shout down to about eighty percent of the press. They willfully ignored anything wrong in the President's agenda because they themselves have the same agenda themselves. Did the gift of mature thought pass them by. Did they never realize that they are reporters not opinion makers. Now that things have gone too far, a few are realizing the error of their ways.

And finally, a closing blast to race baiters everywhere, who purchase their race cards by the gross so they can play one any time the discussion goes against them.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Let's Try Something New

Please, no innuendo in the title. I am a person that prefers beauty to ugliness. I prefer freedom over the constraints of a government out of control. I prefer conversations over arguments. For the past two plus years my blog has been primarily devoted to fighting against bad government. That will continue as long as I can sit and type.

Over the years, photography has been a love of mine. I love shooting, be it with a pistol or a camera. I have accumulated some photographs that, I have been told, are worth seeing. A great many are flowers. Some are scenics. Some are transposed. All have been "shopped" to achieve the result that I want. 

I'll try to restrain myself to one a week. But these will be in addition to my blog not in place of. If any picture catches your eye, feel free to copy and print. They should be clear up to 12x 14. Perhaps even larger. I would appreciate it if on the back of your print you would just credit RLOwen.

If you like them please comment to that effect. If you hate the idea, let me know and enough dislike it, it will go away, subject to majority vote. So here we go.

An Orchid for my readers.

After this they will be added into my regular blog.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

California Here He Comes!

I see where President Obama has purchased a luxurious estate in exclusive Rancho Mirage, California. My congratulations and I wish him good luck. I hope the rumor is true. This will allow him to stay close to his buds in the entertainment industry. I am sure he will have a luxurious office with a TV camera, microphone, a satellite uplink and his beloved teleprompter so he can, instantaneously, be interviewed on CNN or take part in the Sunday morning talk shows. That, a golf course, (there are an abundance of country clubs there), and a basketball court and he should be in Obama heaven. I understand the new Obama home has it's own waterfall and lagoon. Beautiful.

I must wonder about Michelle though. If she found the White House stifling, "like a prison", I believe were the words she used, she may have a problem. Rancho Mirage is about a light year away from anything. It is on a strip of desert between two mountain ranges just above the Salton Sea. Palm Springs is the closest semi-civilized area. And while I am sure she will still have staff, it will pale in comparison to the White House. Just makes one ask if she is making other plans.

But beyond all that, I am happy for America for three reasons. Owning this property means that he is actually planning to leave the White House at the appropriate time. First of all, I feared he would try to remain as President beyond his two terms. There are two ways he could accomplish that. The one that I feared most was that he would find a crisis, either natural or created, and declare martial law. He has his domestic standing army. He could bring in the regular army since it's leadership today is more subservient than in the past. And he has, in hand, all the authorizations to take over the country under emergency conditions. The second way was for him to get legislation passed to allow for a third term. I never really believed he could get that done.

The second action that I feared, was that he would work to get the nomination for Michelle, hoping that he would be able to hang around as First Husband. That could have gotten really ugly for all concerned. As I said, I'm not sure what Michelle's plans will be, but at least they don't seem to include Barack in the White House.

Finally, this means that he will be getting out of Washington. He won't be running around the city screwing up an already bad traffic situation and sticking his nose into things that no longer concern him. 

I can't help but think, however, no matter where he is, he will be constantly criticizing his successor and constantly trying to let the American people know how he would do things and how his way would be so much better. I have one suggestion for Mr. Obama, that I am sure he will ignore. Take a page from George Bush's notebook. Go quietly away. Do not criticize your successor. It is not your royal obligation to do so. You will appear much classier this way.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Living In A World Of Delusion

Last Thursday our delusional President gave an interview to Steve Liesman on CNBC. Full disclosure, I didn't see it. I find it painful to listen to the continuous rambling of a man attempting to prove his significance in the world. But when he says something that attracts my attention, I read about it. That way I can get the essence without the theatrical flourishes.

The statement that caught my attention was, "It's pretty hard to find an economic measure where we're not significantly better off." Really? His point of reference is the stock market and corporate profits. If you took economics 101 or have lived in the economy over ten years, you realize that those are part of the economy not the whole economy.

So let's look at the stock market first. The stock market is doing well because of the activities of the Fed. It is called Quantitative Easing. The Fed is printing dollars at a high rate of speed. They are buying back bonds. And they are forcing interest rates down. This has created an artificial support for the market which has benefited the rich only. I, and many others, believe that the Fed has created an unsustainable bubble in the market. When this bubble bursts the rich will be the first out or selling short. Then they will make even more money picking up bargains.

So now, on to corporate profits. They are indeed up. But we have to look at why. It is not because sales are up. It is because corporations have trimmed down. They have shut down facilities and laid off personnel. In other words, because of their responsibility to their stockholders, they cut expenses to preserve profits. This is to the detriment of the working class.

Median income is down. Most new jobs are either part time or low pay. The Participation Rate, the true measure of how many people have jobs, is the lowest since the bad old days of Jimmy Carter. All of the new programs that the President touts will not help. 

People need opportunity not government mandated equal results. They need fewer regulations and more freedom to become entrepreneurs. Take the weight of the government off of the shoulders of business and workers and the economy will burgeon like never before.

We are in an economic race with the rest of the world and our President is forcing us to drag an anchor. Worse yet, he constantly finds ways to add weight to that anchor. It reminds me of an old quote that I remember. It might be from the Bible. We must "break the chains that bind us."

Friday, July 25, 2014

Is Helium The Solution?

I am not writing here about party balloon helium. The only thing that will solve, for most of us, is how to entertain kids at a party. I am writing about helium 3. I suspect many of you have never heard of it. Shame on the press once again. They don't keep you informed.

I am afraid we must touch on the edges of science here, so a hyper-caffeinated drink may be required by some. To generate heat and light, the sun uses hydrogen in nuclear fusion. This occurs in the sun's core. The reaction produces helium in a couple of isotopes. One of which is helium 3.

Helium 3 may be able to be used in cold fusion as a clean and plentiful source of electric power. It would be efficient, clean, cheap, and non-radioactive. Research seems to indicate positive result can be forthcoming.

This of course means all of the money spent on wind farms and solar fields is wasted. Well, not completely wasted. It filled the pockets of some political cronies, and got some really nice donations to the politicians.

There is one problem. The best nearby source for helium 3 is the moon. Helium 3 burns up when it hits earths atmosphere. Since the moon has no atmosphere it collects there. The Chinese have openly expressed a plan to go to the moon to mine he3. Since there seems to be a wide, if quiet, interest in moving forward, I assume the US also has plans. At least I hope so.

We are sitting on enough fossil fuels to keep us energy independent for a century or more. It simply does not make any sense to waste more time and money on stopgap power generation that we don't really need and eventually become a blight on the landscape. This is just another liberal feelgood project that will come to a bad end.

The United States is in a bad place right now. We didn't expect to be here, we were dragged here by an out-of-control ideology that will not face real facts. To them, intentions equal reality and as they never see the unexpected results of their intentions They never understand the error of their ways. Just remember, energy is a technological problem, and we are very good at technology.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Let's Just Invade Mexico

OK, so you might think that invading Mexico is a little extreme. But there is so much supporting such an idea. You constantly hear the foreign press referring to the United States as the American Empire, even though we are not an empire, so we can just be what we are already called. No foul there.

Under the Putin Doctrine, it is acceptable to forcibly annex another country under certain provisions. The first provision is that you have way more firepower than they have. We certainly qualify there. The second provision is that you feel the people in your target country would rather be part of your country. Judging by the flow of Mexicans crossing our southern border, I think that is a given.

Now Mexico is a really nice country with really crappy management. I hate to be crude, but that is the best word to describe Mexican politics. Those with the most money and the most guns run the country. It appears that anyone from the local dog catcher on up to the Federales have a price tag on their sleeve. 

Beyond all this, Mexico has already committed acts of war against the United States. They took a United States Marine who happened to make a wrong turn and threw him in jail where he still languishes. Mexicans do that all the time and we just send them back. But they can't seem to prevent buses full of kids crossing the length of their own country.

Armed Mexican military frequently cross into the United States. Sometimes on foot. Sometimes by helicopter. We do nothing. They have even fired their weapons across the border. And still we do nothing.

Lately they have kicked it up a notch. A very big notch. They have been shooting .50 caliber bullets across the border. For those that are not firearms literate, a 50 is a military cartridge with a 1/2 inch diameter bullet that weighs over an ounce. They are commonly used in machine guns and have a range over a mile. There are now sniper rifles that shoot this cartridge, like the Barrett. So there is justification and precedent.  

Mexico would make a nice addition as an American territory. It has great vacation spots, lots of natural resources to exploit, a super manufacturing base that used to be ours anyway. It just seems like the thing to do. We have a President with a pen and a phone. Maybe he should use that pen to put this on his list of things to do. Then he can use his phone to check with Valarie and Michelle to see if it is OK.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Random Thoughts - Forty-One

When I did my first Random Thoughts, I never expected there to be more than forty. But readers seem to like them, and I enjoy writing them. So here we go again...

I have to chuckle at this sudden "Elizabeth Warren for President" movement. We have a far left liberal, one term US Senator, with a law degree and an affiliation with Harvard Law school, with no real world experience, who lied about her personal background to advance her career. A President with that resume is not working too well for us now. Why does anybody think that repeating that mistake is a good idea?

Maybe, just maybe, I gave up on my Red Sox too soon. 

When Bill Clinton ran for President, his claim was, that with Hillary, we would get "two for the price of one". It seems, now, that if Hillary runs for President, we get a triumvirate. The Clinton family seems to have morphed into "Clinton, Inc.". We now have Chelsea in the mix. Remember, if you have three dogs pulling the sled, the view is pretty much the same unless you are the lead dog.

I really doubt that Hillary will run. She is sixty-seven years old now. I know from personal experience, the energy level at that age isn't what it was. And it takes a lot of energy to run for high office. She comes off shrill from time to time and she has enough baggage for a safari. Giving up her job as Senator was a foolish move seeing as how it put her under the control of her worst enemy. No one can doubt her time as Secretary of State damaged her reputation. She can spend her years giving  speeches and writing. She could still be in the public eye without accumulating more bruises.

I tried to give Elijah Cummings the benefit of the doubt. I was wrong to do so. The misuse of the IRS to go after perceived political enemies is criminal. Nixon tried to do it and his IRS chief rightfully refused to acquiesce. I am certain that an occasional audit suggested by a President has occurred on occasion. I cannot believe that there has ever been anything like the wholesale use of the IRS to stifle opposition, as the Obama administration has done. Elijah Cummings, as the top Democrat on the Oversight Committee, is doing his best to use his position to cover up for this political wrongdoing. He is doing this to protect himself as well as his President. It has come out that he also personally contacted the IRS and made his own suggestions to target a conservative group.

Isn't it strange. Vladimir Putin acts like a thug in a good suit. He does what he wants. He asks no permission. He makes no apology. If it is to the benefit of him or his country he just goes ahead and does it. And the world holds him in awe. Kind of makes you wonder doesn't it?

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Robin Hood Reversed

When I was a kid I loved the movie "Robin Hood". The one starring Errol Flynn. In black and white. It was made the year I was born. Robin could shoot an arrow like no one ever could. He robbed from the rich, gave to the poor and was the scourge of the corrupt Sheriff of Nottingham. Great movie, great fun.

Now we have a Treasury Secretary, by the name of Jack Lew, who prefers to rob from the successful and give to the wasteful. He is just happy as a clam that the United States has the highest corporate income tax in the world. He really enjoys taking the income of companies that are innovative and customer oriented and giving to the government to throw down a multitude of rat holes.

Jack Lew is a Harvard educated attorney. He has spent his whole career in government. And if one can judge by his actions and words, I would guess that he is a dyed in the wool Keynesian. No surprises there. As a Keynesian, he feels that it is his obligation to raise taxes as high as possible and retrieve as much money from the proletariat as he can, since all money really belongs to the government anyway. As the President said, "you didn't build that business".

Well, businesses, like people, don't like high taxes very much. It is too hard to be successful and earn that money. Companies would rather reward their stockholders, expand and hire, develop new products, any of hundreds of really good uses that a business can do. And that includes the billions of dollars that businesses spend on charitable works.

Now I agree, a well run government needs money. The key phrase is "well run". Our government is not well run. It is bloated and greedy. And it is no source of amazement that good American businesses would be willing to move their headquarters to other countries that have a more realistic tax structure. It is people like Mr. Lew that drive businesses out of the country or into downsizing because they can't compete.

All in all, I think I prefer Errol Flynn's, Robin Hood, over Jack Lew's, Jack Lew. 

Monday, July 21, 2014

Help Stamp Out Thuggery

In case you hadn't noticed, the quality of life has been deteriorating lately. Not just in the United States but pretty much around the world. The problem is thugs. Actually groups of thugs. Sometimes they are referred to as gangs, like MS13 or the Bloods or the Crips. In Mexico there are cartels like the Zetas. But in Mexico it might even be a local police force or a rogue group of Federales.

In the old USSR, it was the KGB where Putin got his training. Many of the old KGB have left "government service" and have become the Russian Mafia with branches in many countries. For the traditional there are the tongs and the triads in the Orient. 

There are those that consider themselves religious armies like Boko Haram and ISIL in the Middle East. Let's not forget Al Qaeda and the Taliban. I think you get my point. The number of gangs and the population of gang members is growing all the time.

So what are their common points? They are angry, greedy, vicious, care not a whit about human life, and they are very well armed. In Chicago, a city with absolutely draconian gun laws, the gangs are better armed than the police.

The gangs have one more common point. The governments are afraid to take them on. Before the 1980s there was no MS13. They came out of nowhere and are now in every major city in the country. They do not "hide their bushel under a basket". Their very bodies are billboards of tatoos showing the world who they are. But in spite of their strut and swagger, the police and the politicians couldn't put an end to their existance before they took root.

We are still the strongest nation on the face of the Earth. We have a military. We have Obama's domestic standing army. We have the FBI. We have police forces and sheriff's departments covering the land. Not to mention Marshalls, DEA, ATF, etc. and we can't control gangs in the USA. That is beyond pathetic.

Until our politicians get a spine and demand an end to the gangs, quality of life will continue to sour. The gangs continue to get all the weapons they want and the politicians continue to try to disarm the honest citizens. Changes. We need changes. And we need them soon. I, for one, am tired of being on the losing side of this battle.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Post Racial Bigotry

Lately, President Obama and Attorney General Holder have stated that there are people out there that disagree with the President's policies because of his color. They are absolutely correct. There will always be a hard kernel of bigotry in the world. After all, the KKK still exists and has been publicly recruiting in the south.

Where they are disingenuous is in blaming the failure of the Obama administration on this hatred. Obama won election to the Presidency twice. As I recall he was black back then too. You can't have it both ways. Far and away the majority of Americans are not bigots. The President and the AG know this. Neither man will ever accept responsibility.

Obama has failed on the economy. He has failed in foreign relations. His signature health care program is falling apart. Meanwhile Mr. Holder runs the Justice Department like a political hit squad. It is an administration that is malfunctioning to an incredible degree.

In other words, people have turned on them because they have failed. Not only have they failed, they have failed arrogantly. Their constant self praise reeks of ego without substance. At no time has the old saw been more true, "if they could only see themselves as others see them".

President Obama promised to be a post racial President. What he has turned out to be is a super-bigotry enabler. He has turned us into a nation of enemies. Whites vs. Blacks. Men vs. women. Gays vs. straights. Young vs. old. Rich vs. poor. He is playing the American people like puppets. He makes it sound like his agenda is about equalizing results. It is not. It is about political power.

Obama's agenda is to keep the fires of animus burning. He wants to convince a majority of the people that he and his political party are the supporters of the downtrodden masses. The very people whom he is very happy to leave as downtrodden masses. This is all about votes and control.

You see, the Democrats and their share of the independents about equal the Republicans and their share of the independents. So the is a gap, in an election, is usually about five to eight percent. That small group can sway the outcome of any election. Unfortunately, this group is , in most cases, the least informed of the electorate. They are Obama's target group. Beyond using them to keep power for the Democrats, he does not care.

But due to a lack of experience, an inability to accept advice, and an unwillingness to collaborate with Republicans, he has blown the mission by over reaching. The big problem is that he has endangered our country and our economy. In my opinion, history will judge him harshly.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

May I Clarify

I have been thinking about some of the blogs that I have written lately. In retrospect I may have sounded like I am one of the "Fortress America" crowd. That is absolutely not so. Politicians have sucked so much of the blood out of our military that, as a group, they need some rest and rehabilitation.

Starting at the top, the strongest and best able leaders have been forced out, in favor of those more compliant to political purposes. This has allowed the politicians to use the military as a laboratory for social experimentation. The latest being to lower physical standards so that women would be allowed on the battlefield as war fighters. I do not belittle women. My daughters would scalp me. But most do not have the physicality to handle battle field conditions. 

Now they have even restored Sergeant Bowe Berghdahl to active duty after he walked away from his post without permission. At best he was AWOL. At worst he was a deserter. Either way, his proper place is in custody behind bars.

The military is low in numbers, and are being scaled back even more. They are low in equipment and low in morale. Meanwhile, the administration is turning our military bases into low quality "Bed and Breakfasts" for illegal aliens. To put it mildly, our military has serious immediate needs and they are not being met. Those serving need down time and the military as a whole needs reorganization.

Presently, the Middle East is a powder keg and the fuse is burning. But the people that are killing each other are enemies that would happily kill all of us. Both sides despise us. We do not have a true friend in this fight. When your blood enemies are killing each other, don't get in their way.

There are some Middle Eastern governments that would love to see us go after the Caliphate or Islamic State or whatever name they are using today. I am sure Shia Iran would love to see us and the Sunnis killing each other. The same is true of the Shia government of Iraq. The Saudis would love it because it would keep the war from getting to Saudi Arabia. Saudis don't like to fight. They prefer to have us do it for them. Gee, if we were energy independent, we wouldn't have to do their fighting for them. Someone please send a note to the President on that. 

 So my thought is, stay out of that furball. let it shake out for a while. Rebuild our military. Bring up some of the good solid younger officers. We've lost the old generation so let's go for the new. Then, when we have new political leadership that appreciates the great American military, they will be mission ready.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

An Ego Goes Two Ways

 The ego is one of the strongest mental tools available to us. Without an ego we would be unsure and indecisive. Just selecting apparel for a days work would leave us in  a quandary that could last hours. Personal productivity would come to a standstill. Fortunately, no one is completely without ego.

Our egos give us the fortitude to accomplish. If he didn't have a strong ego Picasso would never have painted. Without an ego Eiffel could never have designed his tower. A surgeon could not have the courage to cut into the human body with no ego to support him.

For many years of my life, I was involved with technical sales. I dealt mostly with engineers. Some of them had an education and work experience that far exceeded my own. I was expected to consult with them and help them solve engineering problems using the products that I represented. I never allowed myself to get involved in conversations regarding qualifications. I knew my products and their applications. The rest was all ego.

So an ego is a good thing as long as it is balanced by a reasonable understanding of where one stands in the knowledge and skills department. Your ego may tell you that you are a great baseball player. But if you can't actually hit a baseball, you had better adjust your frame of reference.

I'd like to think that, in my writing, I am the reincarnation of Ben Rosenthal, the great New York Times editor and columnist. But my good sense forces my to take a more realistic view of my meager talents. Thankfully, we are still allowed to dream.

And so, to my point. When one has an ego so overblown that it is unchecked in the face of reality, suffering will occur. If the person with the big ego has no power, it is usually they, and sometimes, their family that is damaged. But when the big ego has big power, the damage falls on others. The more power that person has, the more people get hurt.

When you are the leader of the free world and everything is falling apart around you, when even those who were your close allies shun you, and you do not have enough introspection to do a serious reality check, you put much of the world in pain.

From the people living in inner cities, to children uprooted from Central America, to the Americans without work, to the Israelis sitting in bomb shelters, there is a lot of unnecessary pain in the world. Perhaps, it is time for a massive ego check. 

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Random Thoughts - Forty

My Red Sox have done it to me one more time. I do not think that I am premature when I say, once again, with a tear in my eye, "Wait till next year".

Did you see the picture of those "children" Obama is importing from Central America? The picture with a bunch of young men, shirtless, showing off their gang tattoos with a group of younger kids behind them flashing MS13 gang signs. They will soon be in cities around the country making those cities even more like third world countries. Thank you Barack.

The EPA is out of control. If you wash your car in your own driveway and some soapy water washes down into a culvert that runs in front of your house you are a polluter. If someone complains, and there's always someone willing to do that, the EPA can declare you guilty and fine you without due process. They can then garnish your wages. And these people are not shy about going after the average citizen.

Obama won't close the borders because he hates our borders. He considers himself a global President and cannot understand why we want to preserve our great country the way it has been, as a Constitutional Republic. He considers the Constitution a handicap to his progressive, world wide, agenda. And thank God it is.

There has to be some way to get Lois Lerner into jail. That is where she deserves to be. We have a corrupt Justice Department that is so politicized they are irrelevant except for the criminal actions in the political arena that they refuse to see. Integrity in government has been completely lost. 

Two and a half years into Benghazi and still waiting. Three weeks into the VA and the veterans are still waiting for health care. A year into IRS and still waiting. Four years into Fast and Furious and still waiting. But there is never any waiting for a Presidential vacation. Forty-four million dollars worth and still counting. Just a few reminders.

I read where Al Gore was interviewed by the BBC in Australia. He went on another rant about global warming. I have some advice for Mr. Gore. Cool it.

The big song hit for this summer should be "Martha's Vineyard, Here We Come". Great to see the President taking some time off from fund raising.

In a Gallup poll, Muslims showed huge support for Barack Obama. Is this because Obama shows little support for Israel? Or is it because he continues to fund the Palestinian Authority and Hamas? 

Yes. Yes, I'm ready for some football. (American football, not that other stuff.) 

Monday, July 14, 2014

I'm Bullish On America

In my humble opinion, the United States of America is, far and away, the greatest country that has ever existed on this or any other planet. I will always feel that way. I have little patience with American citizens who live here and have a low opinion of my country. They have no chains on them. They can leave.

We are a country made up of men and women. People are imperfect. There are times when their imperfection affects the country as a whole. This has never been more true than it is right now. The people that we have entrusted to lead our country have a litany of imperfections to a degree that I would never have thought possible. 

Power hungry avarice and fecklessness, shortsightedness and plain stupidity, egotism and megalomania, all are on display for the world to see. And trust me on this, no one political party holds the patent on governmental failure and inadequacy of leadership. Their incompetence and greed has brought the country low.

Lest I start sounding encouraging prematurely, I do not believe the pain is over yet. But America has seen pain before. The great depression started in 1929. The country was just coming out of that when we were thrown into WWII. Those were not easy times. In fact for many people they were far worse than we face today. But I think it will get much worse before it begins to get better. I have no crystal ball but I cannot see how we can avoid a huge readjustment in the stock market when the Fed ends Quantitative Easing. But end it they must or the dollar will be worth nothing.

So having said all that, I am still bullish on America. Our leaders have gone off in the wrong direction. We need to get back to smaller government and restore free market capitalism. We need to lower taxes and encourage entrepreneurship. We need to control our borders and control the violence in our cities. We need to be energy independent. We have to go back to our Constitution. We need to believe in our Bill of Rights. 

As soon as we get leadership that follows that map and is open in doing so, this country will start to turn around. And I believe the turn around will come so fast that people will be astonished. America is strong, innovative, and hard working. As a nation we can do whatever we decide to do. That is the way this country has always been. That is why I am bullish on America.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Peace Through Power. Power Through Peace

Liberals love straw men to do battle against. They create situations of enormous national danger that exist only in their overheated rhetoric. They will then act astonished that anyone could be foolish enough to support the position represented by their straw man. Of course, no one actually does. But that, to them, is totally irrelevant. Then they will proceed to show why this straw man should be destroyed never to be seen again. The problem is that low information voters will buy into the liberal cant. 

Thus it is with the military. Liberals will argue that the military must be downsized. The cost is burdensome and we cannot continue to bear the cost of putting boots on the ground around the world. While both of these thoughts have a touch of truth in them, the whole truth is far much more complicated.

While the cost of worlds most powerful military is burdensome, the cost of a world in chaos is much more so. We must bring our military back up to the levels that have commanded the respect of the world's leaders. Both the good and the evil. 

The officer ranks have been decimated at the highest levels. Compliance with an inept Commander in Chief has become more important than the strength, skill, and independence that has always described the officer corps of the American military. 

It was not very long ago when the mere presence of an American carrier group or a few nuclear submarines tended to make bad actors re-examine their plans and actions and stiffen the spines of our allies. Today even Iran dares challenge us militarily. Imagine if any other country in the world had the might of the American military and we were unable to balance it. I fear the world would soon change in an unpleasant manner.

A strong American military helps keep the world peaceful. In a peaceful world people and countries prosper. When there is great prosperity, the cost of the military as a percentage of GNP goes down. The military becomes cheaper to own.

With a world in chaos and financial success being a wistful dream, the cost of the military rises. Munitions must be used. Equipment will be destroyed. And worst of all, men will be lost. 

Yes, the free world expects the United State to field a superior military and be the big cop on the block. But that's OK. Because we can do it and do it well. And, most times, we can do it without boots on the ground and shots being fired. When we have leadership that believes in America, and believes in American exceptionalism, we earn and deserve the privilege of world leadership. There are still many of us that believe that is a great honor and Americans should stand proud because of it.   

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Hail Hail The Gangs All Here

I have never used the word debacle as much in my life as I have the past year. What in God's name is going on. The country jumps from one mess to another without so much as breathing time between episodes. While the President goes on acting as if everything is a political problem, we are treating shipments of children worse than we would be allowed to treat a shipment of cattle. Prisons have higher standards for inmate care than the administration is allowing for these kids. But still more keep coming across the border.

The pictures on TV are just abhorrent. But the stories are much worse. These kids are afflicted with lice and scabies. Some of them are actively tubercular.  There are not the facilities or staff to deal with these problems. Toilets, showers, and clean clothing are scarce. The children are piled into buses and airplanes to be transported all over the country and dumped on unsuspecting communities, leaving behind, on those buses and airplanes, the means of spreading the pestilence that they have brought with them. I will be very surprised if there is not a measurable increase of these problems in the general population in the near future.

These children range in age from four year old to late teens. It has been shown that some of the older teenagers are already gang members. Many of them are members of the gang "MS13". While having originated in Los Angeles, MS13 is Latin American in background and has become international in scope. The members are very dangerous and prone to extreme violence. 

You can bet the farm that these gang members are recruiting among the younger kids. They like to have the young ones around to carry their drugs and weapons. If arrested, the young ones are treated less harshly and the senior members stay out of jail.

You can also be sure that sub-human predators are prowling around the fringes looking for young boys or girls to put on the street or even sell to human traffickers. Evil flocks to situations like this where plunder is available and pretty much unprotected. 

President Obama gave the people in South and Central America the impression, through his grand speeches, that if their children got to the United States, they would be allowed to stay and the government would see to their care. Whether this was intentional or not, I do not know. But with the wide open southern borders, a human tragedy was inevitable. We now have a tiger by the tail with a President that finds out about problems in the news and never has a solution except to move on to the next crisis. 

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Obama At Any Price

It is common knowledge, though under reported, that there are a lot of people out of work. Many of the new jobs being "created" are part time or low income. Average incomes are down. People, flat out, just have less money to spend. But that is just the price we pay to have a President like Barack Obama.

Seven years ago gasoline prices were right around two dollars a gallon. Then as the tide of history brought us up to and through a Presidential election the price of gasoline swept upward through three dollars a gallon and now is closing in on four dollars. But that is just the price we pay to have a President like Barack Obama.

The President doesn't like carbon. Coal is carbon and the use of coal as a fuel in the United States of America cannot be tolerated. The one thing about coal is that it is cheap. If you are generating large quantities of electricity, coal becomes an economic fuel to do so. About forty-four percent of our electricity is generated by coal. The EPA is shutting down coal mines. That will put a lot of people out of work and it will, as our President says, "increase the price of electricity drastically". But that is just the price we pay to have a President like Barack Obama.

You probably had health insurance that either you or your employer paid for. It may not have been perfect but you were probably satisfied. It was costly but affordable. But it was not up to our Presidents standards. For one thing, about ten percent of our population didn't have health insurance. Many by choice. Some couldn't afford it. Some fell through the cracks. A prudent person would focus on the ten percent and leave the ninety percent alone. But a prudent person wouldn't have an agenda of a government takeover of health care. So now, your co-pays are up, your deductible is up, and as of the first of the year your premiums will be up. But that is just the price we pay to have a President like Barack Obama.

There are other things. The cost of food is up and rising. The cost of starting a business and dealing with regulations has gone up to the point where entrepreneurship is way down. Then there is the cost of all of the crony capitalist deals. Oh, and don't forget the forty-four million dollars of tax money that the President has spent on vacations. But that is just the price we pay to have a President like Barack Obama.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Atheists, Man Up Or Shut Up

Atheists are the most sensitive people on the face of the earth. The mere glimpse of someone else's religious symbol or the whisper of a prayer or the name of a deity, drives them to the floor in an apoplectic fit. If said symbol should be a crucifix, months of rehabilitation may be required. 

As soon as their head clears from the shock of a near religious exposure, they immediately call one of their tame lawyers and institute a lawsuit against all people, places, and things that may be involved in the heinous treatment they received at the hands of, what was once, a free society.

As a rule, the people, places, and things being sued do not have the ability nor the wherewithal to fight such a lawsuit. Eventually a judge gets involved. Usually a liberal judge. (Are there any other kind any more?) A finding will be handed down that the cross must come down or the phrase, "oh my God", will be banned in a particular school district.

But this is all low hanging fruit. This is the school yard bully, picking on the little kids. It is time for the big sissies that shudder if they hear the name Yahweh spoken aloud to man up or woman up, should that be more appropriate, and take on the big fish.

After many long and, sometimes, difficult hours of research watching hundreds of baseball and football games, I have observed many acts of blatant public religiosity take place on the playing field. I have seen pitchers walk to the mound and bless themselves before they throw the first pitch. I have seen running backs take a knee in prayer after scoring a touchdown. I have seen countless players in both sports raise both arms in thanks to their maker after a successful play.

These people are not low hanging fruit. They have money to burn. They have agents. They have lawyers. But most of all they have hugely powerful sports organizations behind them. This is the big game in the hunting preserve. 

Will the sissy atheists man up and take on Major League Baseball or the NFL. I hardly think so. It is so much more fun for them to pick on the little guy and take away a little piece of his freedom and his life. 

You see, their lives are so small and shallow that this give them pleasure and they have nothing that anyone can take away in return. You can't get water out of an empty well and you can't take away pleasure from an empty life.

Monday, July 7, 2014

The Mini-Me Found

This may be a little speculative at this point. But, hey, I am not above doing some speculation. It has been often reported that there is little love between the Clintons and the Obamas. It has even been said that there is a level of animosity. So I think it is safe to say that the idea of Hillary succeeding him, does not fill Barack with great joy.

Barack, being the controlling type, I am sure felt a strong desire to prevent that happening. With Hillary being so deeply buried in baggage, it probably couldn't have happened anyway. But, as I stated, Barack is the controlling type. He, undoubtedly, feels that he has the right to pick his successor. I doubt that he would deign to pick anyone of the female persuasion. So Elizabeth Warren wouldn't be someone he would turn to. Joe Biden? Forget about it. I have even see Al Gore's name bandied about. That is just too weird.

So how would Barack go about picking a royal successor. Due to his crushingly oblivious ego, and in spite of the various poles, Obama actually believes that he has been a great President. His problem is that, through all this time, he has been afflicted, as Elmer Fudd would say, by those "wascally Wepublicans". Notice how his speeches lately have turned into major league pity parties. 

So Barack would, hearkening back to his own career, look for a young male with an Ivy League education. Preferably Harvard. Someone with a strong ethnic identity would be nice. Limited experience is OK. But, maybe a little more experience than a community organizer. He should be slim and dress well. Generally make a good appearance. But finally, and above all, this person must be truly dedicated to the liberal agenda, no matter the personal cost. Not money, silly, reputation.

So there you have it folks, Barack has gone forth seeking his own personal mini-me. Is there anyone out there with those qualifications to be found. You betcha! How about a young Hispanic mayor. Forty years old. Educated at Stanford and Harvard Law School. Not drop dead handsome but makes a good appearance. Dresses well. We'll see, about the liberal part.

So he has been a mayor. That should be enough experience to run the country. Look how even less experience worked out for Obama. But he needs Washington exposure. A nomination to Secretary of Housing and Urban Development should take care of that. Just get him into town where Obama can devote himself to grooming and teaching his selected one to walk in Obama's image.

As I observe the passing scene, it appears to me that Obama may have selected Julian Castro as his heir apparent. Now, I'm not one to try to give advice. (My kids would deny the truth of that statement.) But I suggest to Mr. Castro, that he observe very closely, what happens to a moth as it gets close to a flame.

Friday, July 4, 2014

Happy Independence Day

Like most people, I am taking today off. But I wanted to wish everyone a wonderful Independence Day. Please give some thought today about what makes America great. We have much work to do to get our country back.

God bless the USA.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

An Independence Day Celebration

It seems almost mandatory, coming up on the Fourth of July, to write something patriotic. I wanted to take a different approach, so I thought I would celebrate patriotic Hollywood. No, not the self serving, egotistical, America hating, Hollywood of today. I'm going back to the Hollywood of the 1940s. Back to the Hollywood of the World War Two era.

It was a much different Hollywood in those days. Being an American and being a patriot was something to be celebrated by the movie industry. Great stars like John Wayne, Humphrey Bogart, and Cary Grant made war films that showed America as a heroic country fighting evil. And, when you look at the history of the axis powers during that terrible ordeal, America was, in fact, fighting evil. 

Let me say, as I lived through WWII, the evil that was perpetrated was far greater than is shown today. There was a viciousness and lack of humanity that is hard to believe today. Actually, even worse than Boko Haram in Nigeria.

Hollywood tried to lighten the burden and the fear of war by making comedy films like "Buck Privates" and "You're in the Army Now". But films like "Back to Bataan", "Guadalcanal Diary", and "Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo" brought the ugliness of war to the local movie house. But then it was the Hollywood version of the ugliness. The real ugliness was shown in the Movietone News clips that were shown in every theater.

The studios, the stars, and the writers all valued the country that allowed them the opportunity to ply their art without government interference. One other note, back then the studios owned the actors contracts. They promoted the actors names and there were standards of public behavior that were expected. The outrageous behavior for shock value was never allowed. I don't think we were any the worse for that. That is not to say that the private behavior of movie stars wasn't over the top.

No one can write about the WWII era without a special recognition of George M. Cohan. He was a song writer as well as a song and dance man. His patriotic music such as "Yankee Doodle Dandy", " You're A  Grand Old Flag", and "Over There" entertained people through two European wars. When he was on stage singing his own patriotic songs, one could have no doubt that patriotism ran through him as thick as the blood in his veins.

Too many people today don't believe in American exceptionalism. Shame on them. While we may be at a low ebb today, there is still no other country, now or in the past, like the United States of America. One proof of this is that the people with the most vile opinions of our great country still live here. Have faith. Times will change. We have not sunk so far that there is no returning. So celebrate Independence Day proudly. As you are watching fireworks, think what they signify.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Hence The Caliphate

Everyone seems to have an opinion about the happenings in the Mid East and what should be done. So I guess I might as well express mine. I suspect that my opinions are just as good as most of the tripe that is being floated around out there.

I see a lot of former military on TV expressing their thoughts on the world situation to various news and opinion show hosts. While I respect those retired warriors for their service, I fear that they see a military solution to most problems. I cannot support any plan that puts American blood or wealth in danger at this time, especially in Iraq. We were there at enormous cost. We had control and the potential to build a democracy. We threw it away. The powers that be, in Iraq, may try to use us, but they don't really want us. In that part of the world, we are the kaffir. We are the infidel. We shall always be. Never forget that.

But we do not stand alone as infidel. To the Sunni, the Shia are infidel. To the Shia, the Sunni are infidel. They will never love or trust one another.  But, they will always love and trust us, less. Iraq was split between Sunni and Shia. Saddam Hussein was a Sunni tyrant. He and his government repressed the Shia.  When Nouri al Maliki took over as a Shia Prime Minister, he repressed the Sunni. But al Maliki didn't have the power and the control that Hussein had so the Iraqi Sunni organized against him, along with Syrian Sunni. They brought the world ISIS and the renewed dream of the Muslim Caliphate.

So it lays out like this. You have Shia Iran on one side. You have ISIS in the middle and growing. You have a wobbly Iraqi Shia on the other side with a Syrian civil war at their back. Off to one end you have Pakistan which is both Sunni and nuclear. Also, you have a nervous Saudi Arabia that is rich, Wahabi, and doesn't trust anybody except Saudis. You have probably figured out where I am going here.

The Mid East is a rat's nest of angry murderous sectarians whose holy scripts approve any behavior in the furtherance of Islam. They have stockpiles of money and weapons. Some would like to suck us into the fray to do their dirty work for them. The Saudis are famous for letting others do their heavy lifting. So let's be smart for once. Lets sit out this ugly dance and rebuild our military. Remember, "peace through strength".

If ISIS survives and builds their Caliphate, it will be dangerous. Terrorists, would-be terrorists, and hopeful martyrs will flock there. But most of the danger will be centralized. It will be easier to watch and control.  But that is an "if" and it is far in the future. America needs a vacation from international mayhem. 

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Random Thoughts - Thirty-Nine

I know it is soon for another Random Thoughts, but with all the big things front and center we need to spread our focus.

Whoever banned members of the American military from receiving bibles from the Gideons and whoever is requiring them to celebrate Ramadan, should be drummed out of whatever office they hold. They are a disgrace to the heritage of this country.

Liberals hate Fox News because they broadcast news that liberals don't want to hear. But liberals love The Daily Beast, which bears about as much resemblance to a real newspaper as The Onion.

I made a comment to a news article. I do that frequently. My comment was about revisionist history and how spinners and a subservient press hide the real history. I received a response that facts are "stubborn things". But they are only stubborn to those that seek them. Far too many are willing to accept what they are told to think.

So the GNP is a negative 2.9% in the first quarter. That's quite a recovery that we are having after six years. The administration is bragging about job creation but we are down about a million jobs net. Increases are not keeping up with layoffs, never mind new entrants to the workplace and those coming across our southern border. Check the Participation Rate. Here's a clue, liberal economics don't work.

Please don't loose sight of the VA calamity. The administration appears to be more interested in trying to avoid blame than taking proper care of these heroes. Obama claims that he can do about anything with his pen and his phone. Why can't he fix this. Just issue cards like they do for medicare and let these people get the treatment they need and deserve in any facility.

Speaking of our southern border. We have the makings of a true American tragedy. Children are flooding across into our country without supervision, food, clothing, a place to stay, command of the language, and not enough understanding to avoid the wolves in sheep's clothing. This will end up as calamity for far too many of these kids. They will be preyed upon by the worst of our society. Some will be sold like sides of beef. Some are already gang members. Others will be recruited. An inordinate number will end up on the streets doing whatever they must to survive. This is all on Barack Obama.

I have never seen my country in worse condition. I lived through WWII and even with the war and rationing and all the other misery, we were one country pulling together. Our heroes were honored. People were civil. We can and will recover. We need people that will put the country in reverse gear and back us out of our failed attempt toward socialism. It didn't work in Russia. I didn't work in  China. It didn't work in Cuba. It is failing in Venezuela. It will never work here.

PS: Never forget Benghazi!

PPS: Our courageous Marine hero is still a prisoner in Mexico. What is wrong with our government?