title>Lady Liberty Defended: May 2008
Lady Liberty Defended
Saturday, May 31, 2008
  Obama's Unilateral Disarmament Plan
Senator Barack Hussein Obama has problems with his spiritual advisers Reverend Jeremiah Wright and Father Michael Pfleger and he has problems with his friends like William C. "Bill" Ayers. Then we found out that his own family has been going communist for years and back at least 2 generations. Now we know that Barack Hussein Obama doesn't like this country (even though he is wealthy and a U.S. Senator) and he wants us to unilaterally disarm.

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Friday, May 30, 2008
  Honoring the Fallen
I'm going to try my best to say this succinctly and politely but I don't know if I can. The subject is apparently just too complicated for some to understand and those that won't honor our fallen service people anger me.

Soldiers who serve their country honorably deserve remembrance. This all the more so if they give their lives in that service. It has been thus for millenia in all countries.

Now,in some instances this is apparently not the case. Take for example the desecration of some Confederate Soldier graves after this past Confederate Memorial day's remembrance ceremonies. Flags have been removed from the graves in some places such as Corpus Christi. Locally, the markers have been removed/stolen.

Whatever the motivation for such behavior it is reprehensible and must be stopped. How to stop it short of removal of such people from society is beyond me. Clearly, there are some people in whom gratitude for the sacrifices of others, defending their lives, homes and liberty has not been inculcated. They will likely never understand, surely they have never given of themselves in such service and indeed, many actively deride those that support or do serve.

I hope that on this Memorial Day you remember, at the very least, those you know, those in your family, those in your community, who have made the sacrifices necessary for our country to exist and for us to have the freedoms we have to pursue liberty and continue in our way of life.

Please join us at 3:00 PM as we stop everything to remember and honor those who died in our service.

- Memorial Day History



Note: Yes, we know that the official holiday was on the 26th as part of the 3-day weekend. We hold to the traditional day even if it means "extra" rememberances.

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Thursday, May 29, 2008
  The State had NO Evidence of Wrongdoing...
Court: Sect children should be returned to parents By MICHELLE ROBERTS, Associated Press Writer

SAN ANTONIO - In a crushing blow to the state's massive seizure of children from a polygamist sect's ranch, the Texas Supreme Court ruled Thursday that child welfare officials overstepped their authority and the children should go back to their parents.

The high court affirmed a decision by an appellate court last week, saying Child Protective Services failed to show an immediate danger to the more than 400 children swept up from the Yearning For Zion Ranch nearly two months ago.

"On the record before us, removal of the children was not warranted," the justices said in their ruling issued in Austin.

The high court let stand the appellate court's order that Texas District Judge Barbara Walther return the children from foster care to their parents. It's not clear how soon that may happen, but the appellate court ordered her to do it within a reasonable time period.

The ruling shatters one of the largest child-custody cases in U.S. history. State officials said the removals were necessary to end a cycle of sexual abuse at the ranch in which teenage girls were forced to marry and have sex with older men, but parents denied any abuse and said they were being persecuted for their religious beliefs.

Every child at the ranch in the west Texas town of Eldorado was removed; half were 5 or younger.

"The moms are clearly very happy at the news that it looks like they're going to get their kids a lot sooner than expected," said Cynthia Martinez, a spokeswoman for legal aid attorneys representing 38 mothers who filed the complaint that prompted the ruling. "It's definitely an emotional day."

The case before the court technically only applies to the 124 children of those mothers, but it significantly affects nearly all the children since they were removed under identical circumstances.

The Third Court of Appeals in Austin ruled last week that the state failed to show that any more than five of the teenage girls were being sexually abused, and had offered no evidence of sexual or physical abuse against the other children.

The ranch is run by the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, which teaches that polygamy brings glorification in heaven. It is a breakaway sect of the Mormon church, which renounced polygamy more than a century ago.

Roughly 430 children from the ranch are in foster care after two births, numerous reclassifications of adult women initially held as minors and a handful of agreements allowing parents to keep custody while the Supreme Court considered the case.

Texas officials claimed at one point that there were 31 teenage girls at the ranch who were pregnant or had been pregnant, but later conceded that about half of those mothers, if not more, were adults. One was 27.

Under Texas law, children can be taken from their parents if there's a danger to their physical safety, an urgent need for protection and if officials made a reasonable effort to keep the children in their homes. The high court agreed with the appellate court that the seizures fell short of that standard.

CPS lawyers had argued that parents could remove their children from state jurisdiction if they regain custody, that DNA tests needed to confirm parentage are still pending and that the lower-court judge had discretion in the case.

The justices said child welfare officials can take numerous actions to protect children short of separating them from their parents and placing them in foster care, and that Walther may still put restrictions on the children and parents to address concerns that they may flee once reunited.

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  Gas Prices
I now think that we'll do ok if we can keep Congress out of it...

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Wednesday, May 28, 2008
  Settlement for Red's Trading Post?
David Hardy pointed me to this article on a tentative settlement between Red's Trading Post and the ATF to settle the case. Not a lot of detail but it does explain why the Red's Trading Post blog came down suddenly. It is common for participants in such agreements to be "gagged", i.e. unable to discuss the details of the settlement. It is great for the ATF, as it appears that they had seriously overstepped. However everybody has to get something from such an agreement. I guess we'll have to see what the actual results are...

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Tuesday, May 27, 2008
  Men of Honor - CPT Humboldt R. Versace
We would like to express our humble thanks to CPT Humboldt R. "Rocky" Versace and to his family for his service.

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Monday, May 26, 2008
  Today, by law, we observe Memorial Day
This morning, I walked out into the sunshine and crossed the street to the bandstand in Gypsy Hill park for the Memorial Observance. As speakers spoke and musicians played I was struck both by the large number of cars which brought people in ones and twos to the ceremony and by the larger number of folks going on with their daily business of jogging, walking the dog, prepping their chosen site for the afternoon picnic and at one point the jarring backing horn of the city trolley. I couldn't help but think that while there were a number of citizens who had come to today's observance ceremony, the vast majority had no apparent interest. They never even paused in their run, never slowed the pace as they walked their children in strollers or their dogs on the leash. I thought, too, of those in our family who had offered themselves to the service of their country and those who had died in that service, far from home.

I hope you will join me at 3:00 PM on the 30th of May (the traditional Memorial Day) for a moment (or more) of silent prayer for these men and women who gave us so very much.

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  Lady Godiva Rides Again
Finally able to live up to our name (and not disappoint the many hopeful visitors) with this report. Some cheeky ladies mounted some horses and rode bare-naked through Hyde Park.

Frankly, I'm just posting this because it is about as risque as we're going to get and it hits all the buttons for those of you searching for nude riders of horse.

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Sunday, May 25, 2008
  Need a Read? Read John Derbyshire...
John Derbyshire at the National Review is a good read. If you're home alone this weekend take a gander...

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  Senator Ted Kennedy
My earliest recollection of Ted Kennedy is him in front of cameras trying to explain how he was so very sorry for and had tried so very hard to avert the death of one Mary Jo Kopechne. Yeah, Chappaquiddick. Lots of other things were more interesting to me at that time but one could not avoid the constant news coverage of the accident, his heroic attempt to get help, his admission of fault, his plea deal and his "apology". I felt then, from the beginning, that something was wrong, but it was only after many years when I was able to see the facts of water levels, the time-line, and so forth that I became absolutely convinced that Ted Kennedy was a philanderer who took advantage of a young campaign worker, carelessly (perhaps drunkenly) drove his car into the water and left the woman to die in the rising tidal waters while he went searching for political cover. I know exactly what I think of this man and it is anything but charitable.

Just about a week ago we heard that Ted Kennedy had had a stroke, corrected to a seizure and finally that he had an inoperable, malignant, brain tumor. I have to admit that my first thought was "Why, dear God, was this man not given this 40 years ago?" Since the news of his disease we have been treated to news casts lauding his "service" to his country, we have seen Senator Byrd of West Virginia "sobbing" over his departed friend, and we have heard of his courage in leaving the hospital and getting on his boat to sail in a regatta this weekend. I am not moved. I believe that this man killed an innocent woman and was never called to account for that and that he has worked in opposition to the best interests of this country.

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Saturday, May 24, 2008
  Kaziah Hancock
With a tip of the hat to Jack for leading me to this, have a visit with a special lady and see how she honors the fallen.



But Kaziah isn't the only person so dedicated...

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  Help Me ID a WWII Army Unit
Some photos, unclassified, were mailed to my grandparents. The return address is:

MAJ P. C. Bosse
Hdqs WPBC, APO 244
c/o P. Va. San Francisco

The postmark is June 28, 1945 by the US Army Postal Service.

I think MAJ Paul C. Bosse is the mustached gent in the photos. I'd like to find out more about the unit, MAJ Bosse, and his connection to my grandparents. An internet search for "Paul C. Bosse" or "P. C. Bosse" turned up nothing. This link seems to indicate that the WPBC was a Personnel Center & Casual Depot. There are more photos, however, which made me think it might be something else (not withstanding the one officer's Adjutant General branch insignia). These photos show the troops, mixed race(!), in the field with white and black NCOs. However, just as in the beach photo, the officers wearing "helmets" are actually only wearing the "Liner, Helmet"! That's not what would have happened in combat operations. Any information on this subject you send me would be welcome but please avoid the BS.





What I have found on Paul C. Bosse:
Born in New York state 4 Dec 1907, residence was New York City, he was married and had children on 17 Jun 1942 when he enlisted. His dad was worth $840,000 in 1930! He died 13 Dec 1973 in Warrensburg, New York. His wife was Anne Gillette Bosse and they had 3 daughters (Anne, Susan and Constance). So I believe I've found the connection. Paul Bosse knew my grandmother from Lake George where he met his wife Anne Gillette at or near Sabbath Day Point. I'd like to know more...

U P D A T E


I've been given the following info:
- WPBC APO 244 for 1945 is for Western Pacific Base Command, Saipan.
- Maj Bosse was Asst Chief of Staff of G2 for WPBC. Here is an article he wrote assessing Japanese civilians: http://www.jstor.org/pss/2745220

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Friday, May 23, 2008
  Barack Hussein Obama and the White Vote
Mrs. Clinton came out and made a point of noting that she was getting the "white vote". Some accused her of racism even as they were themselves pointing out the same thing but using, in some cases, euphemistic terms to replace "white vote". So, the question is not "Can Mrs. Clinton get the white vote?" but rather "Can Barack Hussein Obama get the white vote?" Can he? Will he? Will the polls reflect that?

Up until the time that BHO's involvement with Reverend Jeremiah Wright and Michelle Obama's "America is a mean country" comments came out, BHO was the man. The question wasn't if he could get the white vote but if he was black enough to get the black vote. His skin tone was too light, his mother was too white and his speech lacked Rev. Jackson rhythm. He got the white vote. He had the black vote. He appeared to have stolen Mrs. Clinton's inauguration robes and was running away with the nomination. That's all changed now.

Look at Pennsylvania. Mrs. Clinton took that state and it is mostly white, older whites, established whites, middle of the road whites. But Pennsylvania has a black population that is about the national average by percentage of the total and BHO did fairly well there. Now look at West Virginia. The black population as a percentage of the whole is significantly less than the national average. In some counties they can count the black families on two hands. Literally. Mrs. Clinton ran away with the vote. Heck, John Edwards got 7% of the vote and he has dropped out of the race. What does that say? I think it says that as time has gone on and knowledge of BHO's hate America background has increased white voters see his as more of a Stokely Carmichael BLACK radical than as a uniter or counter-racist. In other words, where he was a race neutral candidate before he's now the BLACK candidate.

Let's face it folks. Most white folks don't want to vote for a guy who hates them for things they didn't do. His typical white grandmother was a socialist attending a socialist Unitarian church along with his grandfather.BHO's mom was with his dad and step-dad because she didn't want to be a part of that white culture and was rebelling against white society. BHO's wife doesn't like America, thinks it is a mean country in which she could have no pride UNTIL and UNLESS it elected her BLACK husband President. His mentor, pastor, friend, Jeremiah Wright is a racist who thinks that Jesus can only be the true lord God if he will punish the whites for what they did to the blacks. BHO himself didn't feel it was important to render honors to the National Anthem even though he was in the midst of campaigning for that country's highest office. He couldn't bring himself to wear a pin on his lapel of the flag of that country. He reportedly couldn't repeat the Pledge of Allegiance.

White voters know what this means. It means that the BLACK candidate is out to get them. Most will not willingly give him the chance.

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Thursday, May 22, 2008
  Introduction
Introduction
Howdy. I want to thank Hobie for asking me to join him here. While I've never met Hobie in person, I have known him for about 5 years and consider him to be a person of great character, and his invitation to post here a personal compliment.

I reside at 8000ft elev. in the Colorado Rockies with views of the Great Divide, and the National Forest is my backyard.I am currently an electrical engineering student, and a member of the National Guard in an infantry unit. I am an avid hunter, shooter and outdoorsman. I have raised and trained personal protection dogs, although I'm not actively involved at this time due to my military and school obligations. I am a diesel truck fanatic, and I built the engine in my current F350 crew cab 4x4. I am a former licensed General Contractor and licensed septic installer. I designed and built small vacation cabins off the grid. I have also contracted almost every trade associated with building a home, and consider myself to be a master carpenter. I was a custom framing contractor for a number of years with a small crew that I ran personally, in other words I had a tool belt on every day, and I also contracted custom interior trim at other times. The last couple homes I built, I did almost all the work by myself, including framing and standing walls, due to lack of good help in my area.

I am also a Libertarian. I believe both of the current popular parties have utterly failed this country. Neither party represents the values envisioned by the Founders of this nation. The most recent actions of the current government have practically nullified the protections we have under The Constitution. I believe that any gun control for any reason is an affront to, and a direct attack on the principles of the 2nd Amendment and our Civil Liberties in general. I believe the 4th and 14th Amendment have been completely molested by “probable cause”, “no knock raids” and “asset forfeiture”. I am also a law enforcement detractor, and the ongoing and increasing abuses by the militarized law enforcement community leads me to believe that they are rapidly approaching the point where they are more harmful than helpful to the free citizenry of this country, and no longer represent the values of the peace officer.

I joined the NG in 06 when I found out they had raised the age to 40, I was 39 at the time. I've always felt I had an unfulfilled duty to my country and out of all my accomplishments, this is the one I'm most proud of. I turned 40 at Basic Training with a bunch of kids half my age. It was the hardest thing I've ever done, and the most fun I've ever had. I recommend service to everyone, and I would be willing to advocate a short term of service as mandatory in this country, as I believe it would produce a better overall class of citizenry than what we have today, and the result would be a better and stronger country.

My current goal is to receive a degree in electrical engineering with a mechanical minor and use it to work in the alternative energy field. I have a home that is off the grid, and I designed and installed the alternative energy systems for the other homes I built. This created a strong desire to become more involved in the field of alternative energy.

Thank you for taking the time to read my bio, and you can look forward to some outrageous cop bashing and government questioning posts from me in the future, or as long as they are allowed or Hobie gives me the boot anyway LOL!

Sincerely,
Rmndndngrus

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  Senator John McCain on 2nd Amendment Rights
This came from Glenn Beck, radio and TV host/commentator, and I'm posting it here so as to have a record of Senator McCain's comments.

My support for the 2nd Amendment
By John McCain

Glenn Beck fans, gun rights are an important issue, and I wanted to share with you some highlights of the speech I will deliver today at the National Rifle Association annual meeting. I think they will give you some good insight into my strong belief in the Second Amendment.

"When I first ran for Congress in 1982, I was proud to have the support of gun owners. For more than two decades, I've opposed efforts to ban guns, ban ammunition, ban magazines, and dismiss gun owners as some kind of fringe group unwelcome in "modern" America. The Second Amendment isn't some archaic custom that matters only to rural Americans, who find solace in firearms out of frustration with their economic circumstances. The Second Amendment is unique in the world. It guarantees an individual right to keep and bear arms. To argue anything else is to reject the clear meaning of our Founding Fathers.

"Self-reliance is the ethic that made America great, and our Founders understood that. They knew there would be circumstances where Americans might need to use firearms to protect themselves and their families. Some Second Amendment detractors think this is a mere abstraction, or a relic of America's distant past. But Americans exercise their Second Amendment rights every day to protect themselves from criminals, as happened in Scottsdale, Arizona where earlier this year, a 74-year-old woman defended her home from a man who repeatedly attempted to break in, extort money and threatened to set fire to her garage. The Second Amendment - and its guarantee of an individual right to keep and bear arms - is certainly not an abstraction.

"But the clear meaning of the Second Amendment has not stopped those who want to punish firearms owners - and those who make and sell firearms - for the actions of criminals. It seems like every time there is a particularly violent crime, the anti-gun activists demand yet another restriction on the Second Amendment. I opposed the ban on so-called 'assault weapons,' which was first proposed after a California schoolyard shooting. It makes no sense to ban a class of firearms based on cosmetic features. I have opposed waiting periods for gun purchases."

...

"Like your members, I am a committed conservationist. I have long supported multiple uses for public lands that ensure they are available for this and future generations to hunt, fish and explore. Over 12 million hunters in the United States contribute $25 billion to the economy, much of it in rural areas. Hunters pay billions of dollars in federal revenue through license and other fees. Here in Kentucky, hunters spend over $400 million and support thousands of jobs."

...

"Over the years, I haven't agreed with the NRA on every issue. I have supported efforts to have NICS background checks apply to gun sales at gun shows. I recognize that gun shows are enjoyed by millions of law-abiding Americans. I do not support efforts by those who seek to regulate them out of existence. But I believe an accurate, fair and instant background check at guns shows is a reasonable requirement. I also oppose efforts to require federal regulation of all private sales such as the transfer between a father and son or husband and wife. I supported campaign finance reform because I strongly believed our system of financing campaigns was influencing elected officials to put the interests of "soft money" donors ahead of the public interest. It is neither my purpose nor the purpose of the legislation to prevent gun owners or any other group of citizens from making their voices heard in the legislative process.

"Those disagreements do not detract from my long record of support for the Second Amendment and the work we have done together to protect the rights of gun owners from the political attitudes of the moment in Washington that view the Second Amendment as a once quaint custom that must now yield to the judgment of modern enlightened opinion. We have real differences with the Democratic candidates for President. They have learned something since 2000. They don't talk about their plans for gun control. They claim to support hunters and gun owners. But just because they don't talk about gun control doesn't mean they won't support gun control. Let's be clear. If either Senator Clinton or Senator Obama is elected President, the rights of law-abiding gun owners will be at risk. They have both voted as Senators to ban guns or ban ammunition or to allow gun makers to be sued out of existence.

"It seems every election, politicians who support restrictions on the Second Amendment dress up in camouflage and pose with guns to demonstrate they care about hunters, even though few gun owners fall for such obvious political theater. After Senator Obama made his unfortunate comment that Pennsylvanians 'cling to guns and religion' out of bitterness, Senator Clinton quickly affirmed her support for the Second Amendment. That drew Senator Obama's derision. 'She's running around talking about how this is an insult to sportsmen, how she values the Second Amendment,' he said. 'Like she's on the duck blind every Sunday, . . . packin' a six shooter!' Someone should tell Senator Obama that ducks are usually hunted with shotguns.

"Senator Obama hopes he can get away with having it both ways. He says he believes that the Second Amendment confers an individual right to bear arms. But when he had a chance to weigh in on the most important Second Amendment case before the U.S. Supreme Court in decades, District of Columbia v. Heller, Senator Obama dodged the question by claiming, 'I don't like taking a stand on pending cases.' He refused to sign the amicus brief signed by a bipartisan group of 55 Senators arguing that the Supreme Court should overturn the DC gun ban in the Heller case. When he was running for the State Senate in Illinois, his campaign filled out a questionnaire asking whether he supported legislation to ban the manufacture, sale and possession of handguns with simple, 'Yes.'

"The Heller case should be decided soon. But however that case is decided, the federal judiciary will continue to be an important forum for protecting Second Amendment rights. The next President will appoint literally hundreds of federal judges, and is likely to have the opportunity to nominate one or more Supreme Court justices."

...

"Quite rightly, the proper role of the judiciary has become one of the defining issues of this presidential election. It will fall to the next president to nominate qualified men and women to the federal courts, and the choices we make will reach far into the future. My two prospective opponents and I have very different ideas about the nature and proper exercise of judicial power. We would nominate judges of a different kind, a different caliber, a different understanding of judicial authority and its limits. And the people of America - voters in both parties whose wishes and convictions are so often disregarded by unelected judges - are entitled to know what those differences are."

...

"The decisions of our Supreme Court in particular can be as close to permanent as anything government does. And in the presidential selection of those who will write those decisions, a hunch, a hope, and a good first impression are not enough. I will not seek the confidence of the American people in my nominees until my own confidence is complete - until I am certain of my nominee's ability, wisdom, and demonstrated fidelity to the Constitution."

...

"But I would like to close my remarks with an issue that I know is much on the mind of Americans - the war in Iraq. Senator Obama has said, if elected, he will withdraw Americans from Iraq quickly no matter what the situation on the ground is and no matter what U.S. military commanders advise. But if we withdraw prematurely from Iraq, al Qaeda in Iraq will survive, proclaim victory and continue to provoke sectarian tensions that, while they have been subdued by the success of the surge, still exist, and are ripe for provocation by al Qaeda. Civil war in Iraq could easily descend into genocide, and destabilize the entire region as neighboring powers come to the aid of their favored factions. A reckless and premature withdrawal would be a terrible defeat for our security interests and our values. Iran will view it as a victory, and the biggest state supporter of terrorists, a country with nuclear ambitions and a stated desire to destroy the State of Israel, will see its influence in the Middle East grow significantly.

The consequences of our defeat would threaten us for years, and those who argue for premature withdrawal, as both Senators Obama and Clinton do, are arguing for a course that would eventually draw us into a wider and more difficult war that would entail far greater dangers and sacrifices than we have suffered to date. Thanks to the counterinsurgency instigated by General Petreaus, after four years of terribly costly mistakes, we have a realistic chance to succeed in helping the forces of political reconciliation prevail in Iraq, and the democratically elected Iraqi Government, with a professional and competent Iraqi army, impose its authority throughout the country and defend its borders. We have a realistic chance of denying al Qaeda any sanctuary in Iraq. We have a realistic chance of leaving behind in Iraq a force for stability and peace in the region, and not a cause for a wider and far more dangerous war. I do not argue against withdrawal because I am indifferent to war and the suffering it inflicts on too many American families. I hold my position because I hate war, and I know very well and very personally how grievous its wages are. But I know, too, that we must sometimes pay those wages to avoid paying even higher ones later. I want our soldiers home, too, just as quickly as we can bring them back without risking everything they suffered for, and burdening them with greater sacrifices in the years ahead. That I will not do. I have spent my life in service to my country, and I will never, never, never risk her security for the sake of my own ambitions. I will defend her, and all her freedoms, so help me God. And I ask you to help me in that good cause. Thank you, and God bless you."
I have to say that it is my studied belief that Senator McCain is an elitist, born of elitists, who isn't above compromising the constitution for his own ends. He's demonstrated that with McCain-Feingold which puts limits on political speech. I don't know if he wrote this or had somebody write this. I'd like to believe that he believes this. I'd like to think that he'll do what he says he will do. I suppose that we'll have to wait and see if he will. It is certain that the alternative candidate does not and will not feel this way about our 2nd Amendment rights.

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Wednesday, May 21, 2008
  Welcome Rmdndngrus
I'd like to welcome Rmdndngrus to the blog. Another soldier, and older (can I say that?) but newer to the ranks of the military. I'm sure he'll introduce himself.

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  Stephen King, Renowned Author and Ignoramus
The renowned author, Stephen King, set forth his ideas about our US service people in an interview said this:
I don't want to sound like an ad, a public service ad on TV but the fact is that if you can read, you can walk into a job later on. If you don't, then you got the army, Iraq, I don't know, something like that. It's not as bright. So that's my little commercial for that.
If Mr. King wants to promote reading he might better say something such as:
If you can't read you will not be able to pass the tests necessary for acceptance into the US military.
That would be closer to the truth. You see, in today's military you must, in nearly every case, have a high school diploma (although GEDs are sometimes accepted) and a meet a minimum level of intelligence as measured by various tests depending on the positions for which one applies. Every single one of those tests requires that you be able to read and read fairly well.

In some ways I find Mr. King's ignorant statement ironic in that his books are/were fairly popular with soldiers with whom I served.

This idea that US service men and women are somehow the dregs of society is a liberal/socialist idea which seems to be part and parcel of the socialist dogma imported from communists in Europe and the far East (i.e. China). It was indeed true, in those areas, that the common soldier was the among the lowest classes and often uneducated. In many instances it was either the army or starvation for the soldier but most of the time it was an excellent way for the the state (as in the nation/government) to control the trouble makers and use them to its own advantage.

The thing is that people like Mr. King and Senator John Kerry (who has said very nearly the same thing) never seem to expect better of the military when they are in power. We saw little effort to reverse this trend by politicians during the Carter or Clinton presidencies. All such initiatives came from either conservative political leadership or, mostly, within the military hierarchy.

The truth is that today a soldier/sailor/Marine/airman who can't read can't perform to expected standards. They can't use the equipment they are issued, can't complete the paperwork they must complete, can't complete the training they must take, can't train the soldiers they must train and so forth. It is also true that the military services today have the highest education levels of any military at any time in history. Perhaps it is Mr. King and Senator Kerry and their comrades who need an education...

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Tuesday, May 20, 2008
  Homosexuality, Politics and Popular Culture
Sure is a lot of it out there now. In our faces. That's homosexuality. From Rosie O'Donnell on The View to numerous designers on HGTV to characters in sit-coms to Congressman Barney Frank. Lots of "them" believe their being discriminated against and lots of those on the "religious right" are opposed to homosexuality as immoral based on the Bible or Koran or... In any case it has permeated our culture to the point that we always seem to be talking about homosexuality or seeing it or having to listen to arguments for or against. It wasn't like this when I was a kid. At least not that I remember. What has happened?

Well, as far as I can find, homosexuals are supposed to be about 10% of the population. About the same as the percentage of blacks in the population. I say about because nobody knows and nobody can know. You see there is a portion of the homosexual "community" who aren't really homosexual. You've got the folks in prison who are "gay for the stay", you've got people like Anne Heche who was straight then gay then straight as situationally appropriate to her needs (at least that's how it appears). You've got folks who likely truly can't see people of the other gender as sexually attractive and you've got folks that think that anyone who might get them off are sexually attractive. You've likely got some who just do it to rebel against parents, society, or something we'll never understand.

Obviously, there's a tremendous number of these people in a society of 300 million and you can't ignore them. But, the age old prejudices often show themselves even among those in industries where homosexuality is apparently common such as among actors, interior designers, dancers, and so forth. Some of the remarks made are infinitely more cutting and more obviously ANTI-homosexual than the don't-ask-don't-tell policy Pres. Clinton forced on the military. Yet, homosexuality has had a huge impact on politics.

Politics on AIDS/HIV, on homosexual "marriage", on adoption, and service in the military have dominated some campaigns. At least the major media outlets have given us the impression that those who ignore the homosexuals do so at their own peril. This view is reinforced by homosexual celebrities such as Rosie O'Donnell. But is it true? How can one be in peril for ignoring the homosexual vote AND, at the same time, for ignoring the "Christian right" vote?

Quite frankly it is all tiresome. Very tiresome. I just wish they would all get out of my face. I'm tired of all the illogical arguments, ad hominem attacks, and just having to deal with it. I think it is a red herring intended by certain politicians to distract us from all the things they were elected to do that they haven't done. Because the subject is so polarlizing, they have been very successful in that. Look for the subject to come up in this fall's general election...

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Monday, May 19, 2008
  Barbarian or Tribal Music
Even in this enclave where we are sheltered from all social and fashion innovations, I've noticed an upsurge in European Barbarian/Tribal music. I've commented on this earlier with a post on one of these bands, Clann An Drumma, but there are others, many others it seems. Included would be Saor Patrol, Clan Wallace, and the aptly named Barbarian Pipe Band... Quite a change from the New Age/Celtic musicians like Enya, Clannad, and Loreena McKennitt.


Barbarian Pipe Band


Saor Patrol


Clan Wallace




What does this say about the direction of Euro-centric culture which is under attack by immigrants, mainly Muslims? Will they have to fight for Europe all over again? Does this presage a new Euro-Celtic nationalism?

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Sunday, May 18, 2008
  Clan An Drumma
"Keep it tribal" is their motto and that they do. Clan an Drumma (Children of the Drum) were founded by Joe Kilna MacKenzie. They are worth a listen and if you can see them in person I think you'd likely enjoy that as well.

At Culloden


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Saturday, May 17, 2008
  "We can't drill our way to lower prices at the pump."
That's what Senator Dick Durbin said the other day when the Senate had a vote concerning the subject. What a genius and I mean that in a purely honest, saracastic way. Dick Durbin must not understand that increased production, even the threat of increased production can drive down the prices on oil and oil futures. Lower crude prices will bring lower refined products prices and, yeah, that includes gasoline and diesel.

Let's face it, it is pure stupidity to whine and complain about economic stability and then to sabotage it by not being able, when you could be able, to produce the most necessary commodity out there. That's oil. Oil makes stuff we use, oil transports that stuff, oil gets us to work where we make money to buy that stuff and oil keeps us warm enough to enjoy that stuff. No oil, no economy, no country.

Dick Durbin, you are an idiot.

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Friday, May 16, 2008
  POTUS and POTUS Wannabe
Our President of the United States, George W. Bush addressed the Knesset yesterday and said,
"Some seem to believe that we should negotiate with the terrorists and radicals, as if some ingenious argument will persuade them they have been wrong all along. We have heard this foolish delusion before. As Nazi tanks crossed into Poland in 1939, an American senator declared: 'Lord, if I could only have talked to Hitler, all this might have been avoided.' We have an obligation to call this what it is — the false comfort of appeasement, which has been repeatedly discredited by history."
to which I responded,
No shit Sherlock.
Unfortunately I'm not a contender for the office and one of these, Barack Hussein Obama says that this was an attack on him, personally. He says it is wrong for the POTUS to make such a statement on foreign soil. The POTUS said his comments had nothing to do with BHO (BO if you prefer). Senator Biden said it was "Bullshit". The Dem/S are about to crap all over themselves about this. They should.

Intentional or not, the POTUS called them out and they knew they were guilty (guilty dog barks first) and they let us know they had the guilt for their stance. BHO has tried to spin this as have the rest of the Dem/S. I hope that most Americans who are paying attention aren't persuaded by their lies but the truth is that MOST Americans aren't paying attention. They're looking at the gas pump. Now that might get their attention, like when the Dem/S say something stupid like "We can't drill our way to lower prices at the pump."

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  Athiests...
I'm puzzled by atheists. For people who supposedly believe in nothing they sure believe that Christians need to be silenced, don't they? Well, everyone believes in something. I believe in God, specifically I'm a Christian. A Christian, in the broadest sense of the word, is one who believes Jesus Christ was sent by God to die for our sins and that Jesus did die for our sins. Dig deeper and there are a lot of variations on the theme. Atheists believe in nothing. At least that's the story they tell.

So you might say, "What's so puzzling to you Hobie?" Well let me try to explain. Atheists are worried that Christians (and presumably other religionists after the Christians are eliminated/silenced) are trying to force their ideas on them. But it matters not at all that they are trying to force their ideas on Christians. They do it all the time with trying to remove the Ten Commandments from this or that place, eliminate crosses in public places, even to writing books and making movies that promote the atheist idea (dare I say atheist belief?).

The biggest thing right now as spotlighted by "The Golden Compass" and "Expelled" is that atheists are trying to force everyone to believe as they do (did I just say an atheist believes?) whether it is simply to reject Christianity (why is it they don't worry so much about Islam?) or to actively support what is now called "Darwinism". I find that interesting.

Only in this country supposedly "dominated" by Christians can atheists freely express their views. In Muslim countries they'd likely be silenced (and that would be the least of their worries). So, again, why is it I'm such a threat?

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Thursday, May 15, 2008
  Polygamy, Pedophilia and the Law
Frankly, this is about the religious sect and their compound just outside of San Angelo, Texas. There's a lot I just don't understand about this and I consider myself fairly intelligent.

This group, the FLDS (or Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints), was apparently infiltrated by an informant and apparently had a member (a 16 year old girl who has yet to be located) who called complaining of being raped and beaten by her "husband" (which relationship might or might not be legal). There were 416 children taken from the group's "compound" (really a small town which hasn't been incorporated or otherwise recognized as a political entity) outside of Eldorado, Texas. Those children are being kept at the San Angelo Coliseum (in a sports venue?). The complications which follow from such actions affecting so many people have understandably strained the governmental infrastructure and will likely cost the people of the state a lot of money.

Before I continue, I should note that the "leader" of the group, Warren Jeffs, has been convicted of criminal activity resulting from acts he committed as leader of this group.

Without going into a lot of theocratic detail, the FLDS is an off-shoot of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints popularly referred to as Mormons. Once upon a time, polygamy was a practice accepted by Mormons. At that time it was not uncommon in society at large for 15 year old women (girls we call them now) to marry men aged 22 or more. Polygamy was not the usual thing and several sects of that time were attacked for their support of polygamy or a variation known as "plural marriage".

Any genealogist will find evidence of young women aged 13-15 marrying in most families although there is some greater likelihood of it happening in relatively isolated rural communities with lower population density. There are many instances of girls as young as 12 years of age being married even into the 1880s. (A recent (well, for us old farts) incident that is well known is the marriage of Jerry Lee Lewis to his 2nd cousin (twice removed) when she was 13.) However, this has now been labeled as pedophilia and it has been legislated against with age standards varying state-by-state.

The FLDS women dress "funny" in distinctive "pioneer" dresses and with an outdated hair style. All members seem to have taken to segregating themselves from society at large both physically by literally living apart from society at large in separate communities and by cutting off broadcast influences such as television and radio within those communities. The "compound" near Eldorado is one such place.

So, I have to get to my questions which I'm hoping somebody can actually answer...

#1 - Where is the informant/infiltrator and why, if conditions were so bad within the community, the government authorities didn't move to correct this earlier?

#2 - Where is the complainant? They say they can't find her? Did she exist? Was she a fraud? How can the warrants issued stand in such a situation?

#3 - What has happened within our society that we have defined (many of us) our ancestors as pedophiles for marrying 13-16 year old girls? (Are you afraid to look at your family tree?) Indeed, we now commonly refer to those in the 21-25 year age group as children. It is even held to be so in law and official statistical computations. How far will this redefinition of childhood go?

#4 - Why, if the women were victimized, is it that the children removed from their care? In other words, why weren't the MEN (as they are supposedly the ones committing the criminal acts) removed from the "compound"? Why weren't they arrested?

#5 - How, if the state is willing to act in this way and the FLDS is so bad, does the FLDS continue to exist? I mean, why haven't the various state governments gone after them and why hasn't the federal government gone after them for moving women across state lines (and international borders) for the purpose of prostitution or some such?

#6 - Why aren't other religious groups, with different standards of child rearing, thoughts on polygamy and polyandry, or health care similarly pursued?

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Wednesday, May 14, 2008
  Law Enforcement or Revenue Enhancement
Kim du Toit had an article about civil resistance to speed cameras in Great Britain and France. We have a similar situation here in Virginia what with stop-light cameras and the recent imposition of "abuser fees".


Now, we know that speeding (or going too slow in some instances) is illegal because when one driver's speed differs substantially from every other driver it can cause a hazardous situation for the other drivers being overtaken and for the individual passing unaware drivers. Speeding might also exceed the capability of the car to interact with and maintain contact with a particular road surface. Since most drivers aren't trained or experienced enough to instinctively apply those limits to themselves, we post those for them. Still, there are times when speeding is permitted such as for ambulances, police officers responding to calls and, often, when pregnant women are being transported to hospital. In fact, going fast even faster than permitted by law is not a criminal offense because simply speeding is not an inherently dangerous act particularly on empty roadways.


"Running" red lights or stop signs are mortal sins either. If nobody is on the other intersections one can pass through without spontaneous destruction of oneself or others. But, we have laws about obeying these particular traffic rules because in normal situations puts the violator unexpectedly in the path of other traffic and is dangerous.


No longer satisfied with on-location enforcement by the happenstance of a police officer being present when a violation is committed, we've started to use technology to monitor stop-lights and stretches of roadway 24/7. But these technologies have drawbacks.


Without monitoring by a human, errors have occured. I have read that one camera was actually showing a violation and that the light was green when the car passed through. Speed radars, used by the anti-speeding setups, are notoriously subject to error. Multiple vehicles, some weather conditions, and so forth can render results unreliable or inaccurate.

Some communities are using a network or unofficial program to encourage citizens to report violations of law to police officials who, because they can't actually prosecute with this hearsay evidence, harass the supposed violator with a letter denouncing them for either committing the violation or allowing somebody to do so with their vehicle. I recently received such a letter. It proves my point in that neither my vehicle nor myself much less the two of us at the same time have been in this locality, ever, certainly not on the date or at the time in question. The reporting citizen was clearly inaccurate and wasted taxpayer money and time on this.

The abuser fees might be gone but I bet the creation of a culture of block spies a-la communist China and the Soviet Union continues.

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Tuesday, May 13, 2008
  Bagpipes
I love to listen to the pipes. I think it must be nearly universal although I did have one woman literally run screaming from the shop one day. She was yelling at her husband, "I can't stand that screeching" as she barreled out through the door. Fife and drums hadn't bothered her but the pipes did. Perhaps we should have pipers serving in Afghanistan and Iraq...



"Going Home" at a funeral


Johnny Bagpipes




Non-traditional (or is it?)


And as a supporting instrument


They weren't called warpipes for nothing...

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Monday, May 12, 2008
  Clinging to God and Guns


Courtesy of "Grizz"

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  License & Registration Please?
Perhaps it's time to call their bluff.

There is an often voiced mantra from the Anti-RKBA crowd of "why don't we treat guns like cars..." and it got me thinking... I think we in the pro Rights community should take heed. I mean this only half factiously. Really.

(Ex) President Bill Clinton once said, "Should people ought to have to register guns like they register their cars? Do I think that? Of Course I do...", and at that time proposed a national “drivers license” (picture ID and all) for gun owners.

Hello! We missed an absolutely splendid opportunity to stand up to the anti-freedom crowd and CALL THEIR BLUFF.

We should take them up on their offer (especially since it will only get shot down – by their side no less) and show the world once and for all how meaningless (and un-thought-out) their anti-gun talking points are.

Let's look at their "Guns = Cars" proposal not as another rights infringement, but (potentially) as a liberalization of the already confused and confusing plethora of gun control laws and turn it back in their face. How so? Examine what Driver's licensing & vehicle registration truly entails.

Drivers Licenses:
1: Drivers Licenses are Shall Issue permits with universal reciprocity, requiring only a basic knowledge of safe handling and use regulations.

2: Licenses are NOT required for purchase of a vehicle.

3: Licenses are NOT required for off (public) road use, i.e. agricultural use (farms/farm roads), racetracks, private land, USFS/BIA/BLM dirt trails etc.

4: Drivers education / auto safety classes are MANDATORY in many public school districts.

Vehicle Registration:
1: Registration of a motor vehicle is NOT required unless said vehicle is to be USED on public roads. Custom/show cars, racecars, farm equipment, antiques are exempt unless they are to be commonly USED on public roadways. If I am towing a '32 roadster (or ’99 dragster) through town, I cannot be cited for its' lack of registration.

2: Registration of vehicles exceeding "fleet" quantities is not required. I may maintain as many unregistered vehicles on my private property as I desire (provided they do not constitute an "eyesore" or some such other visibly property-devaluing neighborhood gripe.)

3: Registration and extra taxation of High Performance vehicles is NOT required, unless they are to be used on public roads. A 13,000 hp Pratt & Whitney Jet Car (which has no "practical" or "sporting" use) may be owned and kept, unregistered, alongside a VW powered off-road-only dune buggy, and used in non-public spaces with impunity.

Law enforcement of DMV rules:
As we know, there are literally thousands of people out there driving without a license. The only time they get punished is if they are caught violating some other driving law (i.e. causing harm to or endangering another’s person or property). Vehicle registration is somewhat easier to spot, as registration is denoted by a sticker of some sort, visible while the vehicle is in use. (Someone sees you use it without a tag, you get a ticket.)

This is all well understood and simple enough, so, let's apply this exact legal paradigm to guns, on a national level, as the panderer in chief (and others) have said, and continue to say they want.

“Gun” Licenses: Gun owners would "get":
1: A genuinely nationally reciprocal, truly "shall-issue" concealed carry license. Now, while everyone hates DoL and the Licensing dept., you can't say they just arbitrarily deny licenses (as some "authorizing agencies" for CCW permits have done.) Only a basic knowledge of safe handling and use regulations would be required.

2: Licenses would NOT be required for purchase of a gun.

3: Licenses would NOT be required for non-urban non-public land use, i.e. agricultural use (hunting/varmint control), ranges, private land, USFS/BIA/BLM hunting areas etc.

4: True gun safety could be taught in schools, not just anti-gun rhetoric.

“Registration” DMV style… Gun owners would “get”:
1: A Licensing & registration system that is useful (to the government) only after the fact, i.e. after the shooting stops (ignoring for the moment the fact of door-to-door tracking and confiscation – see California and NYC). Registration of a firearm would NOT be required unless said firearm is to be USED in a public place. Custom/show guns, race-guns, long-arms or side arms, antiques, etc would be exempt unless they are to be commonly USED in public.

2: A DMV style registration system would deny “arsenal” registration rhetoric just as it currently does not apply to off-road “fleets”.

3: Removal of the National Firearms Act (1934) provisions against Class III (high performance/ specialized) weapons. If guns were to be treated as cars, the substantial similarity rules would apply. Just as "High Performance" or specialty vehicles are not restricted, except in their place of use (not on public roads), neither then could the law be justified in restricting the possession of "high performance" (Class III) firearms.

Law Enforcement:
Like Cars, so Guns. It can be truthfully stated that a gun in my possession, regardless of type, in a public place, is NOT being USED, only carried (much like towing a dragster), and therefore it need not be registered nor licensed. However, should I use that firearm in said public place without License and Registration, I may be subject to penalty upon the assured following inquest … (to be judged by twelve) … perhaps.

Herein we see another potential benefit to "DMV style" gun laws... the principle of reasonable justification and Good-Samaritan laws. I may speed, drive an unregistered car, drive without a license, etc. in the commission of a life saving act. Judges and juries routinely throw out charges (if charges are even filed) of "rule violation" in such cases. Similar dismissals have obtained (and will continue to obtain) for many “rule violations” of current gun laws. Criminals would obviously receive no such benefit.

Admittedly, this “DMV-ing” argument plays into the Rights vs. Privileges debate, however, it has similarly been argued (with some precedent setting success) that motor vehicle ownership has grown from a privilege to a Right within today's society. (If motor vehicle ownership is now a Right (guaranteed nowhere) then how much more so is gun ownership?)

A dose of Reality:
You and I know that my “best-case” writing of a “motor-vehicle” style of registration & licensing scheme would never be allowed, for precisely the benefits I’ve mentioned. That’s probably a good thing. A Right regulated is a Right denied. (There are NO (non-federal) firearm possession/carry restrictions for the law abiding in Vermont and Alaska. Theirs is a true right to bear arms.) But it sure would be fun to throw it in the face of the anti-gun establishment and watch them be forced to dump one of their longest standing talking points.

Oh well. Fight the good fight & license or no, keep your powder dry.

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Sunday, May 11, 2008
  Happy Mothers' Day
Happy Mothers Day. A day to pay and pay for what you say? Well, everyday is Mother's Day in my house. My day is consumed with caring for my mother in one way or another. She gave me one heck of a good life and she's worth it. I'm betting your mother likely is worth it, too. The least you can do today is thank her. If you are a mother yourself, thank you for raising a responsible, self-reliant, intelligent, sober child who will contribute to not steal from society. If you haven't, well...

Today, we'll pick Mom up, have a cook-out and eat a lot, talk 'with' her and let her pet our dog.

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Saturday, May 10, 2008
  Warriors, the Film
Warriors, the Film

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  Jury Nullification
Jury Nullification excites a lot of passion out there, at least among those professionals and lay people in advocacy groups (for or against). Why? What exactly is "jury nullification".

Old Ironsights gives us a glimpse into the subject here,
The history of Jury Nullification in the US can be traced back to the Trial of John Peter Zenger in 1753.

Zenger, a local and relatively obscure New York City Printer (may as well call him a Blogger or Webzien) was charged with Seditious Libel by the Crown.

When the Judge, following following Legal Protocol, refused to allow Andrew Hamilton, Zenger's Attorney, to introduce evidence of the truth of Zenger's writing, he switched tactics and asked the jury to rule on the LAW.

He argued that Truth is an absolute defense to libel - and did so to a jury that was familiar with the facts that were written about. He further argued that the responsibility of judging LAWS was a responsibility if the Juror.

In so arguing, he convinced the jury to disregard the Judge and the "law", override and nullify the Court an acquit the defendant.

The idea that a Jury is a representative of the Will of the People became an important theme in the ongoing arguments about American Freedoms.

I suggest anyone wanting to understand what it REALLY means to be on a Jury read "The Trial of John Peter Zenger" by James Alexander.

We are a nation of Law, not laws - and the difference lies in nullifying then repealing the ones that lie outside the boundres of the Inalienable Rights guaranteed by the Constitution and Bill of Rights.
There are many on-line references such as Wikipedia's entry on Jury Nullification (note, wikipedia should be used as a start to research as individual editors can skew content from factual presentation) to which one can refer to become better educated on the subject.

Of course, I have my own opinions on the subject. I suppose I am a supporter of what Judge Robert Bork termed a "pernicious practice" in that I believe that jury nullification is an implied right of the jury. If it were expected that all juries would always convict, there would be no need for either jury or defense attorney. We see this in some countries where, once a person is accused (i.e. arrested) of a crime, the conviction at trial is expected. This is a sort of Judge Dredd method of "justice". The jury system was a societal acknowldegement that individuals can be corrupted in creating and enforcing the law in both the earlier government by a royal family and in representative democracy.

It is an important subject and I suggest you learn as much as you can about it. Who knows, someday you might sit on a jury.

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Tuesday, May 06, 2008
  Amy Holmes
Now here is an up and coming young lady I'd be pleased to know. You can get most of her bio from the interview.









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Monday, May 05, 2008
  Clarified Thoughts on Barack Obama
Time and exposure of Barack Hussein Obama have provided clarity to my opinion of the man. That thought is complicated or involved and not easy to explain. There seem to be several inter-related points that must be addressed.

- Obama's family and the elite manner in which he was raised.
- Obama's elite education
- Obama's attempt to be black (having been "raised white")
- Obama's choice of church, 20+ year attendance, and acceptance of the pastor
- Obama's apparent acceptance of "black liberation theology"
- Obama's voting record
- Obama's wife's statements about this country
- Obama's behavior in not rendering the proper honors during National Anthem
- Obama's comments about bitter people clinging to their guns and God

Barack Obama was born to a white mother and black African father. His mother divorced him and married a second black African. Aside from a short stint in a "madrasa" as a child Obama was raised in white society and educated in elite schools through college including attendance at Harvard. All his parents were college educated and academics.

After college we're told that Obama moved to Chicago and started working as an advocacy lawyer in poor black neighborhoods. I'm under the impression that he'd already met his wife, Michelle. It was also at this time that he joined the church pastored by Jeremiah Wright. Obama has written and said that Wright was a mentor, brought him to Jesus, and inspired him. Presumably Michelle Obama also attended this church with her husband as they were married by and their children were baptized by Reverend Wright. It has also been reported that this is THE church to attend if you are or want to be somebody in Chicago's black society. Obama has not disavowed black liberation theology.

In his period of elected service, Obama has had the most liberal of voting records. He is the most liberal of US Senators. He is consistent in this and is more liberal than even John Kerry or Ted Kennedy or Hillary Clinton or Charles Schumer.

Senator Obama's wife, Michelle (herself a highly educated and well paid person) has made comments in which she expresses anger at and disappointment in this country. Her comments cannot be construed as the inarticulate comments of an uneducated spouse inappropriately thrust into the spotlight. She is a smart, accomplished person. She said that she was not proud of this country until the time that it seemed the country was accepting her husband (her BLACK husband) as a presidential candidate. She has also said that the USofA is a "mean" country. Clearly, she is in agreement with Reverend Wright. She is also MRS. Obama and, likely, to have a great deal of influence with her husband and he hasn't disavowed her statements.

And so we come to that, for some, one event that sums up the attitude that US Senator Barack Hussein Obama has for the country in the legislature of which he serves. That is the time (was it only once) in which, during the playing of the National Anthem, he did not place his hand over his heart and stand erect.

Then, Senator Obama is making a speech at a fundraiser in which he says that
So, it depends on where you are, but I think it’s fair to say that the places where we are going to have to do the most work are the places where people feel most cynical about government. The people are mis-appre…I think they’re misunderstanding why the demographics in our, in this contest have broken out as they are. Because everybody just ascribes it to ‘white working-class don’t wanna work — don’t wanna vote for the black guy.’ That’s…there were intimations of that in an article in the Sunday New York Times today - kind of implies that it’s sort of a race thing.

Here’s how it is: in a lot of these communities in big industrial states like Ohio and Pennsylvania, people have been beaten down so long, and they feel so betrayed by government, and when they hear a pitch that is premised on not being cynical about government, then a part of them just doesn’t buy it. And when it’s delivered by — it’s true that when it’s delivered by a 46-year-old black man named Barack Obama (laugher), then that adds another layer of skepticism (laughter).

But — so the questions you’re most likely to get about me, ‘Well, what is this guy going to do for me? What’s the concrete thing?’ What they wanna hear is — so, we’ll give you talking points about what we’re proposing — close tax loopholes, roll back, you know, the tax cuts for the top 1 percent. Obama’s gonna give tax breaks to middle-class folks and we’re gonna provide health care for every American. So we’ll go down a series of talking points.

But the truth is, is that, our challenge is to get people persuaded that we can make progress when there’s not evidence of that in their daily lives. You go into some of these small towns in Pennsylvania, and like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing’s replaced them. And they fell through the Clinton administration, and the Bush administration, and each successive administration has said that somehow these communities are gonna regenerate and they have not. So it’s not surprising then that they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.

Um, now these are in some communities, you know. I think what you’ll find is, is that people of every background — there are gonna be a mix of people, you can go in the toughest neighborhoods, you know working-class lunch-pail folks, you’ll find Obama enthusiasts. And you can go into places where you think I’d be very strong and people will just be skeptical. The important thing is that you show up and you’re doing what you’re doing.
, this from a professed Christian.
These things taken together and in the constant, repititious, recounting of all this information about US Senator Barack Hussein Obama tell me a few things about him.

Barack Hussein Obama raised by white women struggled to identify with his black father. His skin tone allowed him to enter this community but he never felt he fit in and he tried desperately attempted to do so. He chose a woman of darker skin tone (there's been a slew of socialogical studies on skin tone discrimination within the black community), took up his advocacy practice, joined a black liberation church, and has voted for every liberal thought since he's been elected. He, in his heart, feels/believes that the USofA exists to bedevil the black person and he is, despite his protestations, the black candidate for blacks.

To my mind, a person so driven by such self-loathing (his white grandmother he said, was a "typical white person"), so influenced by such a wife and such a pastor, with demonstrable socialist views is not a suitable candidate for the office of President of the United States on purely psychological grounds. That he is clearly inexperienced in either domestic or international issues and has no real understanding of business or economics tells me that even if he was a stable, trustworthy individual he wouldn't have the skills to deal with, or make decisions about legislation dealing with, the critical problems facing the country.

Some will say I've gone too far. Surely they would be right to say that I've severly truncated my comments and reasoning. However, I think that this is what it is. US Senator Barack Hussein Obama has been selected as a possible presidential candidate because of the color of his skin and because he is not Hillary Clinton and not because he is really a particularly suitable person for the position.

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Sunday, May 04, 2008
  Gun Ban in UK - a Report
Hat-tip to Xavier...

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Saturday, May 03, 2008
 
We were discussing the "Battle Hymn of the Republic" (as posted earlier) on the Leverguns Community forum and this got me to looking, again, for some good ACW music on the 'net.


Brass Bands played an important role during the Civil War providing martial music for dress parades, serenades for officers and music of home for the troops. Music recorded by the Federal City Brass Band, one of the top Civil War bands in the U.S. today. Tunes include Bonnie Blue Flag Dixie and Battle Hymn of the Republic. For more information please visit www.jvmusic.net



The 26th North Carolina Regimental Band is a subgroup of the Federal City Brass Band. The 26th recreates the brass band comprised of Moravian musicians from Salem, North Carolina who enlisted in the Confederate Army as the regimental band that served the 26th NC Troops during the Civil War. Music is Lorena/Bright Smiles from our CD "Better thans Rations or Medicine" For more information please visit www.jvmusic.net


The American Civil War (actually the SECOND American Civil War) is still an influential period in U.S. history. Just look at the current Presidential campaign. We have, here locally, the Stonewall Brigade Band, in continuous operation for 154 years!

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Friday, May 02, 2008
  Something Personal
I don't usually talk about personal stuff especially not about problems. I did talk a bit about my mother and her (our) struggle with Alzheimer's last May. I guess we're due an update.

Mom is still able to live with her cats. She can do so safely but we've also taken steps to eliminate opportunities for her to make errors with things like the stove/oven. I see her every day for several hours. While we could have moved her in with us or vice-versa, we haven't because of her cats of which she has seven (7). I promised her, when she had been diagnosed and knew what would happen, that I would keep her with her cats so that her cats would be safe for just as long as possible. Cats, as cat people know, are almost impossible to place in adoptive homes. All Mom's cats are already rescues, some have gotten the reprieve twice over and we think the youngest is about 7 years old while the oldest is close to 11.

She still takes Aricept and has for about 2 years. I believe that this has slowed the progression of the disease such that she is still able to be as independent (with care) as she is. Looking back, I think she's been living with the effects of the disease for about 4 years. Based on what I've read, she's doing pretty well.

We are a bit stressed by her care. It is a ½-hour drive, one way, to her house and we make that commute every day in addition to work, etc. and then spend time with her. We have her over for dinner 2-3 times a week. This is one thing she remembers (vaguely) and expects everytime we come in the house. Because of this stress we've brought in some "hired help" for two days a week. Mom loves to see the new faces(everyone is, at the same time, both a new and a familiar face) and talk. Mom doesn't get many visitors. That's another problem but a little background first.

Many sufferers from this disease start by losing inhibitions and/or forgetting the finer points of social behavior. Some cuss like a "sailor" and Mom is one. At least I know the limits of her vocabulary and it is fairly limited. Still, this offends some people. The afflicted also get pretty frustrated, you would too if you suddenly couldn't remember things you should remember and start misplacing things, showing up for appointments at the wrong time, place, and/or date. It is embarassing. Combine this with lowered inhibitions and sometimes there's an outburst which is considered very inappropriate by bystanders. Mom did this and nobody understood. Some took it personally, some were intimidated and some merely felt uncomfortable but all took to avoiding her.

It put off her "friends". They quit "coming by" for a visit and/or calling (they couldn't have a good conversation anyway). So now she was isolated. I should say, though, that there are about 6 people who have gone out of the way to try to include her in their visit plans. Also, there are a couple of fine young men (well, younger than me!) nearby who keep an eye on the place and do things like ensure there is access to the house when it snows. That is a wonderful thing.

I might also mention that the friends didn't call and tell us until AFTER we'd begun to address the problem. Because Mom would forget (or wouldn't tell if she did remember) they thought we were doing nothing.

It is quite a disease. Everything that she does or fails to do can be traced to her deteriorating memory. At first she forgot names, vocabularly, then numbers and how to do math, what was usable. Because she can't remember she can't reason in the same way as she did.

Mom can't problem solve because she can't remember all the variables that affect a problem. E.g. the light won't come on and she can't fix it. Was it the wall switch turned off, the bulb burned out, the lamp unplugged, she can't say. As far as she's concerned it might be the shade... She pulls out the clothes she thinks she might need and hangs them around the room so that she can SEE what she has because she can't remember what she has or where she put it. She puts stuff in front of the basement door because she's convinced that the cats can unlock it and get out. The intent is to put an obstacle in front of the door so it can't be opened. One day it was her clothing, a blouse & a pair of pants. She's decided she doesn't like what was once her favorite pair of shoes because they have "heavy" lugged soles. She swears they aren't hers. She can't remember her other son (who's deceased) and didn't recognize her daughter when she visited.

My sister told me, when she visited at Thanksgiving, that she was afraid she'd end up like this. Mom's mother had it. Apparently, Grandma's mother and grandmother had some form of dementia. I'm kinda worried about it myself. It does seem to be genetic. We're hoping that researchers will find a cure but, as good as they are, we aren't deluding ourselves.

This has impacted our lives. We are fortunate that I'm retired and have the time to give to Mom. The timing of this, bad as it is, couldn't be better for Mom. If I was working full-time I'd have had to take other steps, such as having "hired help" or moving her to a facility much sooner. Again, I think we're lucky and we're not the only ones to be going through this.

Not by a longshot are we the only people experiencing this debilitating disease.

- The Alzheimer's Association
- National Institute on Aging Fact Sheet
- Alzheimer's Foundation
- National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke

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Thursday, May 01, 2008
  Proposed NPS Rule Change
From VCDL:

Breaking news! The Department of the Interior has now published a proposed rule change for the National Park Service!

The proposed rule change is as follows for National Parks:

"A person may possess, carry, and transport concealed, loaded, and operable firearms within a national park area in the same manner, and to the same extent, that a person may lawfully possess, carry, and transport concealed, loaded and operable firearms in any state park, or any similar unit of state land, in the state in which the federal park, or that portion thereof, is located, provided that such possession, carrying and transporting otherwise complies with applicable federal and state law."

The proposed rule change is as follows for National Wildlife Refuges:

"A person may possess, carry, and transport concealed, loaded, and operable firearms within a national wildlife refuge in the same manner, and to the same extent, that a person may lawfully possess, carry, and transport concealed, loaded and operable firearms in any state wildlife refuge, or any similar unit of state land, in the state in which the national wildlife refuge, or that portion thereof, is located, provided that such possession, carrying and transporting otherwise complies with applicable federal and state law."

The problems that I initially see with the proposed rule change are:

* It does not allow for carry in a National Park or National Wildlife Refuge buildings even if the state allows carry in its state park and state refuge buildings. Federal law currently allows for carry in federal buildings unless they are posted. And even then you are allowed to carry for "other lawful purposes."

* It does not allow for open carry, without or without a permit, even if the host state allows for such carry in a state park or refuge area.

* It requires that the state allow the person to be able to carry in a state park or a refuge before they can carry in a National Park or Refuge. It seems to me that you should be allowed to carry in a National Park or Refuge unless the state prohibits carry or says specifically that you cannot carry in a National Park or Wildlife Refuge.

One good thing about this proposed rule change is that it will allow for reciprocity. Thus people from other states who can carry in Virginia will be able to carry in National Parks and Wildlife Refuges within Virginia when they visit here.

VCDL is continuing to analyze the proposed rule change and will be firming up its final position in the near future. I will advise when we have done so.

In the meantime you can read the proposed rule change for yourself by clicking on the URL below:

http://federalregister.gov/OFRUpload/OFRData/2008-09606_PI.pdf

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  Karan Casey
I first heard Karan Casey when she was with Solas and the group was performing at Lime Kiln (a local theatre location). I was more than taken. I thought that her voice was the best I'd ever heard. It has a quality that takes me to some genetically remembered place (and time). Of course, her music is mostly "Celtic" and she was groomed as a keeper of traditional Irish music. I've bought several of her albums. I hope that you enjoy this.



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For us, the American ideal is personified in the concept of self-reliance, work ethic, honesty/forthrightness, decency, personal property rights, family, religion, an ability to defend oneself from criminals and crooked politicians, and personal responsibility.





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