Thursday, June 29, 2006

Space, The Final Frontier...

As man continues to evolve, there seems to be very few places to explore on this world. Some would argue the depths of the sea is a good place to look around, but one of man’s most basic desires is to seek out new territories to claim and develop. Look at the pioneers during the early days of this country. Men like Daniel Boone and David Crockett both kept moving away from settled areas because they felt they didn’t have any elbow room.

In January 2004, President Bush proposed putting a man back on the moon by 2020. He also hoped that in another ten years, man would reach Mars. Today, the House voted to ok funds for the Mars exploration. However, there was opposition to this. Representative Barney Frank (D-Mass.) believed that this appropriation of funds was not necessary. As he saw it, this was nothing more than political without any scientific purpose.

In contrast to this, Representative Dave Weldon (R-FL) said, “We are destined to explore not just Mars but go on to other stars. It's in our nature as human beings.”

Fact of the Matter

The fact of the matter on this is that humanity needs new challenges in order to better itself. Look at history and every challenge which was presented to mankind. In fact, exploration was what led to the creation of our own country. Think of this pattern:

1. Silk Road is cut off to European traders by the Turkmeni from the Byzantine Empire.
2. This cut off forces the rise of the nation states in Western Europe.
3. Each nation state must develop new ways in which to out perform the other nations.
4. Slowly but surely, long routes around African is found to Asia.
5. Christopher Columbus proposed to sail west in 1492.
6. The New World is discovered.
7. Colonists come to the New World to create a new life, which flourishes.

The most important fact to understand is that man had a challenge in Western Europe. They wanted trade goods from Asia. Instead of getting exactly what they wanted, Europeans got something better. Here was an undiscovered land that had unlimited resources. And let’s face it, I think we are all better for this land being discovered.

The problem I have here is that there are politicians who do not see the bigger picture. Representative Frank says this is a cultural thing and it is only based in politics. Well, what do you call the Apollo 1-11 missions? From 1957-1969, the United States was in a race against the Soviet Union to get to the moon and that was based on cultural superiority and politics. If Sputnik had not occurred and Kennedy did not make such a huge goal of wanting to place a man on the moon before 1970, the drive to do it might not have ever become a reality.

The main reason I think Representative Frank made this comment was because he is a Democrat and President Bush is a Republican. Like most things that are said by the President, the loudest critics are ticked off Democrats. I cannot help but wonder if Bush would be praised for this proposed challenge to America if he were a Democrat. It seems to me that one of the biggest problems driving politics today is people’s inherent dislike towards their opponents for personal reasons. People get petty and cruel.

Look at the recent Senate Primary race. The things I read from Webb supporters were pretty mean and childish. Now with a straight Senate race going, it is happening again. One would hope people could just stick to the issue instead of lowering themselves to such childish antics.
Lets look to Mars. Lets look to the galaxy. We need a challenge and dream that everyone can aspire to. M-A-R-S.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

The Left and Right Jabs on Freedom of Speech

I received this story last night and thought it was interesting.

Well, what do we have here. Looks like a small case of some people being able to dish it out, but not take it. Let's start at the top. The story begins at Michigan State University with a mechanical engineering professor named Indrek Wichman. Wichman sent an e-mail to the Muslim Student's Association. The e-mail was in response to the students' protest of the Danish cartoons that portrayed the Prophet Muhammad as a terrorist. The group had complained the cartoons were "hate speech." Enter Professor Wichman. In his e-mail, he said the following:

Dear Moslem Association: As a professor of Mechanical Engineering here at MSU I intend to protest your protest. I am offended not by cartoons, but by more mundane things like beheadings of civilians, cowardly attacks on public buildings, suicide murders, murders of Catholic priests (the latest in Turkey!), burnings of Christian churches, the continued persecution of Coptic Christians in Egypt, the imposition of Sharia law on non-Muslims, the rapes of Scandinavian girls and women (called "whores" in your culture), the murder of film directors in Holland, and the rioting and looting in Paris France.

This is what offends me, a soft-spoken person and academic, and many, many, many of my colleagues. I counsel you dissatisfied, aggressive, brutal, and uncivilized slave-trading Moslems to be very aware of this as you proceed with your infantile "protests." If you do not like the values of the West -- see the 1st Amendment -- you are free to leave. I hope for God's sake that most of you choose that option. Please return to your ancestral homelands and build them up yourselves instead of troubling Americans.

Cordially, I. S. Wichman, Professor of Mechanical Engineering"

Well! As you can imagine, the Muslim group at the university didn't like this too well. They're demanding Wichman be reprimanded and mandatory diversity training for faculty and a seminar on hate and discrimination for freshman. How nice. But now the Michigan chapter of CAIR has jumped into the fray. CAIR, the Council on American-Islamic Relations, apparently doesn't believe that the good professor had the right to express his opinion.

For its part, the university is standing its ground. They say the e-mail was private, and they don't intend to publicly condemn his remarks. That will probably change. Wichman says he never intended the e-mail to be made public, and wouldn't have used the same strong language if he'd known it was going to get out.

How's the left going to handle this one? If you're in favor of the freedom of speech, as in the case of Ward Churchill, will the same protections be demanded for Indrek Wichman? I doubt it. Hey folks, send this to everybody and ask them to do the same and tell them to keep passing it around till the whole country gets it. We are in a war.

Fact of the Matter

The fact of the matter on this is that it is always interesting to see how people assume freedom of speech can only apply to certain folks. The facts that Professor Wichman are things which people should be offended at. Cindy Sheehan calls the insurgents in Iraq freedom fights. Do freedom fighters behead civilians to get their points across? Do freedom fights strap bombs to their chest and blow themselves up? Do freedom fights rape women? Do freedom fight fly planes into buildings? The answer to all of this is no!

In looking at universities and the student populations that live there, there are a high degree of international students coming to our universities for an education. If the United States is such a bastion of evil, then why do these kids still come to school here? The answer is because our universities still provide the best education in the world.

What is rather annoying is how international students will blast the United States and assume because they are international, they can get away with it. Let us not forget that they are being educated in this country, wearing clothes bought with American money, buying American merchandise, and receiving the benefits of American citizens simply because they are hear for an education.

Another thing to be remembered is that Muslims have not been perfect angels in the annals of history. In 1453, when Constantinople fell to the invading Ottoman Empire, Sultan Mehmed II allowed his soldier to have free reign of the city for three days, where upon they raped women and nuns and desecrated churches. During World War I, the Ottomans threw prisoners into locomotive engines.

So once again, I cannot help but ask: Is freedom of speech only allowed for minorities and immigrants? Or is it only allowed for liberals and Democrats? Does it mean that if you are white, Republican, conservative, or just against the popular main stream of dissent, you are not allowed to express your opinions? It would seem that the answer to these questions is yes.
Yesterday, Not Larry Sabato put up a post showing how Jim Webb representative Steve Harding said Senator George Allen “has not earned the right to challenge Jim Webb in his support of the Constitution and its free speech provisions.”

Since freedom of speech is a phrase being thrown around so much, I cannot help but wonder if perhaps we really do have freedom of speech, or if it is just conditional speech so long as it is non offensive or goes with the flow of whoever is shouting the loudest? Opinions?

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

The Foundation of our Country

*A note to all readers, this is going to be a post of just my opinions. Most of the expression are being made off emotion and not necessarily used with logic.*

Today, the Senate voted 66-34 on the proposed amendment to making burning the flag not protected by the First Amendment. The measure needed only one more vote to pass and go to the states for ratification.

Fact of the Matter

The fact of the matter on this situation is that for the thirty four Senators who voted against this, I say SHAME! When it comes to our flag, protecting it should be something that transcends both political parties, both left and right wingers, liberals and conservatives. So, for those wondering, here are the people who voted against a bill to preserve a symbol of our nation. You can see this through

Akaka (D-HI)Bennett (R-UT)Biden (D-DE)Bingaman (D-NM)Boxer (D-CA)Byrd (D-WV)Cantwell (D-WA)Carper (D-DE)Chafee (R-RI)Clinton (D-NY)Conrad (D-ND)Dodd (D-CT)Dorgan (D-ND)Durbin (D-IL)Feingold (D-WI)Harkin (D-IA)Inouye (D-HI)Jeffords (I-VT)Kennedy (D-MA)Kerry (D-MA)Kohl (D-WI)Lautenberg (D-NJ)Leahy (D-VT)Levin (D-MI)Lieberman (D-CT)McConnell (R-KY)Mikulski (D-MD)Murray (D-WA)Obama (D-IL)Pryor (D-AR)Reed (D-RI)Sarbanes (D-MD)Schumer (D-NY)Wyden (D-OR)

In looking at the states that these individuals represent, it is interesting to note how much has changed. Think about Durbin and Obama. They represent Illinois. Who came from that state and I buried there? Abraham Lincoln! This is a man who wanted to preserve the nation. In addition to this, he refused to remove the stars that represented the South. Would he be proud of these Senators? I doubt it. And then there is the People’s Republic corner of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut that voted this down. That portion of the country has been nothing but trouble since the beginning of this nation. If it were up to me, and all sane voters out there who love the country, those thirty four people would be out of a job at the next election, tarred, feathered, and be declared UN-American, but that is just my opinion.

In reading some of the posts online about this issue, it is interesting to see what people think. For instance, I agree very highly with what Mason Conservative said on the subject. However, there are others who argue burning the flag should be protected by freedom of speech. The prevalent argument is that if this amendment were to pass, then we would see our own ability to have freedom of speech pulled back. Now, I have already argued once about responsibility with free speech. We talk about it, but the fact is free speech is greatly limited already because society does not tolerate certain aspects of the speech that is in use by the public. I have even read one blogger say that those who burn the flag are true patriots and live up the ideals of the Founding Fathers.

In looking at the country today, I can’t help but think of an interview I read about Kurt Angle. Angle won the 1996 gold medal wrestling at the Olympics in Atlanta. He had said that after 9/11, everyone was wearing red, white, and blue. Before that, it wasn’t seen as a cool thing. As he recalled, most people really didn’t care about wearing those colors after the early 90’s. From where I stand, I have noticed changes in society that I for one am not too happy to see.

I remember back when I was a student in school, everyone said the Pledge of Allegiance. Now, when I say the Pledge in homeroom, I look at my students and can hear only one voice saying it, MY OWN! Most of these kids stand there with their arms at their sides, not caring about their flag or their country. The mere sight of this is sickening. Now usually if I look, a few will put their hands over their hearts and that will make me feel better, but not always. One of the key elements of the Pledge is to show our loyalty to our own country. Our flag represents our country. Of course, we now have people who hate the Pledge because of the words “Under God” is in it. For those people, grow up. No child really cares about that. And remember, the Founding Fathers used the name of God when creating this country.

Another thing that is hurting us is the damned “I’m a minority. Give me something.” You know what, boo hoo hoo. I am of the opinion you are rewarded based off merits. I had one student fume at me and vent out frustration at the fact that because she was white, had a high GPA, lots of extracurricular stuff, and she couldn’t go to the top colleges she wanted to that were on her list. However, a minority student with a much lower GPA DID get into one of those schools.
One of the great problems we have today is Affirmative Action. The best and the brightest should be able to go to school. It isn’t as if we have a shortage of colleges and universities in this country. Did you know that in Virginia, if you maintain a 3.0 GPA in Northern Virginia Community College, after two years you can transfer to any state school and be automatically admitted? So you take a longer route. Ok, you will still get a college education. What is so bloody annoying with all of this is that people will take advantage of however small amount of minority that might be in them. If you are just part Hispanic, check that box off and you are going up in that list to go to college.

Let me tell y’all something, I am part Hispanic, but I never checked that box off. Which brings me to another point, why do we need to distinct ourselves? Do we really need to be identified as Hispainc Americans, African American, Native American, or any other type of American. NO! We are AMERICANS! Let’s all say it together now: AMERICAN. It’s not that hard of a word to say on its own.

I guess the whole point of this post is that from where I am standing, it seems that the foundations of this country are being eroded away by liberals and left wing nuts. Every time we call them on it, they then hide behind the things they are trying to break down. It is a classic ploy used by these people. Take the flag burning. Jim Webb says he was against the amendment and cites a few other veterans who agree with him. Well, Mr. Webb, you may have served and we salute you for it, but that doesn’t mean you get more of a say as to whether or not the people of this country are wrong if they want to protect the flag from desecration.

In the end, it all comes down to one simple point: What kind of America do we want to live in: one which still enshrines values and history or one that says we will go with whatever is popular to dissent against?

But before we all leave, let's say it together:


Sunday, June 25, 2006

Freedom of Speech and Responsibility

In a story released by the Associated Press, Representative Peter King (R. NY) is calling for the Bush Administration to press criminal charges against newspapers which release national security information to the public. Citing the New York Times specifically and their article about the CIA tracking terrorist funds. King plans to write to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and recommend “an investigation and prosecution of the New York Times-the reporters, the editors, and the publishers. We‘re at war, and for the Times to release information about secret operations and methods is treasonous.” King would also go on to say that he felt the Times was, “more concerned about a left wing elitist agenda than it is about the security of the American people.”

This particular article comes off the heels of a previous article in which Democrats questions the validity of the CIA looking into international funds and whether or not it will violate people’s privacy. As the Associated Press reported, the Treasury Department obtained permission to use SWIFT, the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunications, which is a database that tracks financial messages in more than 200 countries.

There is seemingly two issues that are at the heart of this topic. The first is privacy and if the CIA can actually go into the financial records. Since the Treasury Department got permission to use this database, and the CIA is only tracking international funds to suspected terrorists, the privacy of the majority of people in the world is rather well protected. The second is the issue of Freedom of Speech. Should the press be allowed to publish information like this for all to see, including terrorists? For some people, the answer is no. However, others, like Rep. King, feel that this is an issue of national security. Attorney General Gonzales also agrees that the First Amendment’s freedom of the press does not apply when the interests of national security are in play.

Fact of the Matter

The fact of the matter on this is that sometimes we need to know things and other times we don’t. For instance, I love hamburgers. Anyone who knows me knows that my guilty pleasure is Wendy’s # 3 Biggie Size. Now, I love that meal, but I sure as heck do not want to know how the burger patties are made. The same could be said about fighting terrorism. We like the idea that the bad guys are being taken care of, in one way or another, but do we really want to know how every little detail is done?

Because our government is supposed to be an open one, certainly the public has a right to know what our leaders our doing. The issue I have is where do we draw the line. One of the greatest problems I have seen as of late in this country is that a number of people say things and when they are challenged on it, they hide behind the mantle of Freedom of Speech. Yes, our government does allow us to have this. However, with this freedom come a high degree of responsibility. If a person is going to say something, in my opinion, they bloody well better be able to back it up!

John Milton once said, “People prefer bondage with ease than strenuous liberty.” We say we have freedom of speech, but is that really true? Can I scream fire in a movie theater because I feel like it? Of course not, the mere thought of it is absurd. I am sure all of you now are saying that one would never do such a thing. Still, we can’t say it. We have language rules for television because we must be considerate when it comes to the viewers of certain programs, thus no cursing on television. So what does this have to do with the press?

Well, the answer is even the press needs to learn responsibility. They can hide behind the mantle of freedom of speech and the need to tell their readers the important facts, but at the expense of other people’s lives and jobs. Investigations take time and there are many people who work on these particular jobs. If one reporter comes out and says these people are doing these things, then the secrecy of their job is compromised and the people the investigators are after are now tipped off.

Another problem we seem to have is that the media, or at least most of them, seem to have an agenda where they want to “get the President.” If this were happening and a Democrat was President, do I dare say, the same kind of reaction would be made by those that, as I have just seen, call Representative Peter King coo coo, or other Republicans evil, and other nasty little names? I highly doubt it. In fact, I believe this is nothing more than harsh politics at the expense of the main objective: eliminating terrorism.

As Thomas Paine wrote, “These are the times that tries men’s souls.” Let us hope SOME PEOPLE learn a little more responsibility with their use of freedom of speech.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

The Battle of Little Big Horn

This was originally posted on Red State by the member "streiff" and I think it is a pretty good piece. Opinions anyone?

Sunday, June 25, 1876.

Little Big Horn River, Montana

In preparation to attack a large encampment of Sioux and allied tribes, Lieutenant Colonel George Armstrong Custer divided the 7th Cavalry into three battalions.

He accompanied the largest battalion commanded by Captain George Yates, who also commanded Company F. It consisted of 13 officers and 198 troopers from Troops C (Captain Tom Custer, commanding and LTC Custer's brother and two time Medal of Honor winner), E (First Lieutenant Algernon Smith), F (Captain George Yates), I (Captain Miles Keogh), and L (1LT James Calhoun, LTC Custer's brother-in-law).

Major Marcus Reno led the 11 officers and 131 troopers from Troops A (Captain Myles Moylan), G (First Lieutenant Donald McIntosh), and M (Captain Thomas French). In addition he was accompanied by some 35 Indian scouts and guides.

Captain Frederick Benteen, simultaneously commanding Troop H, led the 5 officers and 110 troopers from Troops D (Captain Thomas Weir), H (Captain Frederick Benteen), and K (First Lieutenant Edward Godfrey).

Captain Thomas MacDougal commanded B Troop which guarded the pack train and composed 2 officer, 127 troopers and 7 civilian mule skinners.

By the end of the day all the men accompanying Custer, save Trumpter Giovanni Martini, aka John Martin, would be dead. The remainder would be fighting for their lives.

The Battle of the Little Bighorn has been portrayed as the largest victory the American Indian ever celebrated over the forces of the United States, either before or after Independence. It wasn't. The thrashing Arthur St. Clair received at the hands of Little Turtle's Miami Confederacy holds that honor.

In many ways the Little Big Horn holds clues as to how the global war on terrorism could play out. In historical context, the growing American republic had been in conflict with the Plains Indians for about twenty years. They won periodic victories, the uprising in Minnesota in 1863, the Fetterman massacre, the treaty negotiated by Red Cloud that closed the Bozeman Trail. These victories were hollow, bringing only brief respite before yet another onset of settlers, railroads, and telegraph poles. Without stretching an already stretched analogy, a tribal society clinging to ancient ways simply lacked the means to survive the onslaught of modernity.
A society in which the clans and families which made up the tribe relied upon their men for defense and hunting simply did not have the cohesion to withstand the losses an industrial society was prepared to accept as the cost of doing business. Incredible personal courage, like that routinely exhibited by the Cheyenne Dog Soldiers was simply no match for modern firearms and men who approached war as an engineering problem rather than as a contest of heroes.

I suppose some in 1876 would argue as some do today that we are not engaged in a clash of civilizations. I have pondered this for some five years now and have concluded, sadly, that we are indeed engaged in such a clash. Just as a tribal society which viewed warfare as a rite of manhood and theft of livestock a game could not coexist with farmers, ranchers, and miners, so, too, it is difficult to conceive of a world in which civilization as it is recognized in industrialized, First World, if you will, societies can coexist with a civilization which abhors its basic philosophy.
But even while we are at war we should take a brief moment an remember those young men, on both sides, who struggled for the supremacy of their way of life under the blazing Montana sun 130 years ago.

The Fallen

Adams George E. PVT KIA Co.L * Allan Fred E. PVT KIA Co.C ** Armstrong John E PVT KIA Co.A * Assadaly Anthony PVT KIA Co.L * Atchison Thomas PVT KIA Co.F * Babcock Elmer PVT KIA Co.L * Bailey Henry A.Saddler KIA Co.I * Baker William H. PVT KIA Co.E * Barry John PVT KIA Co.I * Barth Robert PVT KIA Co.E * Bloody Knife PVT KIA Guide * Bob Tailed Bull PVT KIA Indian Scout * Botzer Edward SGT KIA Co.G * Bouyer Mitch PVT KIA Interpreter/ Indian Scout * Boyle Owen PVT KIA Co.E * Brady William PVT KIA Co.F * Brightfield John PVT KIA Co.C * Brandon Benjamin Farrier KIA Co.F * BroDhurst Joseph H. PVT KIA Co.I * Brown Benjamin Franklin PVT KIA Co.F * Brown George C. CPL KIA Co.E * Brown William PVT KIA Co.F * Bruce Patrick PVT KIA Co.F * Bucknell Thomas J. Trumpeters KIA Co.C * Burke John PVT KIA Co.L * Burnham Lucien PVT KIA Co.F * Bustard James SGT KIA Co.I * Butler James 1SGT KIA Co.L * Calhoun James 1LT KIA Co.C * Callahan John J. CPL KIA Co. K * Carney James PVT KIA Co.F * Cashan William SGT KIA Co.L * Cather Armantheus D. PVT KIA Co.F * Charley Vincent Farrier KIA Co.D * Cheever Ami PVT KIA Co.L * Clear Elihu F. PVT KIA Co.K * Coleman Charles CPL KIA Co.F * Connor Edward PVT KIA Co.E * Connors Thomas PVT KIA Co.I * Considine Martin SGT KIA Co.G * Cooke William Winer 1LT KIA Staff * Criddle Christopher PVT KIA Co.C * Crisfield William B. PVT KIA Co.L * Crittenden John Jordan 2LT KIA Attached 20th Infantry Co.L * Custer Boston Civilian KIA Guide * Custer George Armstrong LTC KIA Staff * Custer Thomas Ward CPT KIA Co.C * Dalious James CPL KIA Co. A * Davis William PVT KIA Co.E * DeWolf James M. Attached KIA Acting Assistant Surgeon * Dohman Anton PVT KIA Co.F * Donnelly Timothy PVT KIA Co.F * Dorman Isaiah Civilian Indian Interpreter KIA * Dorn Richard B. PVT KIA Co.B * Dose Henry C. Trumpeter KIA Co.G * Downing Thomas P. PVT KIA Co.I * Drinan Jarnes PVT KIA Co.A * Driscoll Edward C. PVT KIA Co.I * Duggan John PVT KIA Co.L * Dye William PVT KIA Co.L * Eiseman George PVT KIA Co.C * Engle Gustave PVT KIA Co.C * Farrand James PVT KIA Co.C * Farrell Richard PVT KIA Co.E * Finckle August SGT KIA Co.C * Finley Jeremiah SGT KIA Co.C * Asylum Foley John CPL KIA Co.C * French Henry Eldon CPL KIA Co.C * Galvan James J. PVT KIA Co.L * Gardner William PVT KIA Co.F * Gilbert William H. CPL KIA Co.L * Gillette David C. PVT KIA Co.I * Golden Patrick PVT KIA Co.D * Gordon Henry PVT KIA Co.M * Gordon Thomas A. PVT Co.K * Graham Charles PVT KIA Co.L * Graham Thomas PVT Co.G * Griffin Patrick PVT KIA Co.C * Gross George H. PVT KIA Co.I * Hagan Thomas CPL KIA Co.E * Hagemann Otto CPL KIA Co.G * Hamilton Henry PVT KIA Co.L * Hammon George W. PVT KIA Co.F * Harrington Henry Moore 2LT KIA Co.C * Harrington Weston PVT KIA Co.L * Harrison William H. CPL KIA Co.L * Hathersall Jarnes PVT KIA Co.C * Haugge Louis PVT KIA Co.L * Hawell George Saddler KIA Co.C * Heath William H. Farrier KIA Co.L * Heim John PVT KIA Co.E * Helmer Julius PVT KIA Co.K * Henderson John PVT KIA Co.E * Henderson Sykes PVT KIA Co.E * Hetesimer Dam PVT KIA Co.I * Hieber William PVT KIA Co.E * Hiley John S. PVT KIA Co.E * Hodgson Benjamin Hubert 2LT KIA Co.B * Hohmeyer Frederick 1SGT KIA Co.E * Holcomb Edward P. PVT KIA Co.I * Horn Marion E. PVT KIA Co.I * Housen Edward PVT KIA Co.D * Hughes Francis T. PVT KIA Co.L * Hughes Robert H. SGT KIA Co.K * James William B. SGT KIA Co.E * Jones Julien D. CPL KIA Co.H * Kavanagh Thomas G. PVT KIA Co.L * Kelley Patrick PVT KIA Co.I * Kelly John P. PVT KIA Co.F * Kellogg Mark KIA Newspaper Reporter * Kenney Michael 1SGT KIA Co.F * Keogh Myles Walter.CPT KIA Co.I * Klein Gustav PVT KIA Co.F * Kleiner Nicholas PVT Co.F Detached Service * Klotzbucher Henry PVT KIA Co.M * Knauth Herman PVT KIA Co.F * Knecht Andy PVT KIA Co.E * Kramer William Trumpeter KIA Co.C * Lehman Henry PVT KIA Co.I * Lell George CPL KIA Co.H * Lerock William H. PVT KIA Co.F * Lewis John PVT KIA Co.C * Liddiard Herod T. PVT KIA Co.E * Liemann Werner L. PVT KIA Co.F * Lloyd Edward W. PVT KIA Co.I * Lobering Louis PVT KIA Co.L * Lorentz George PVT KIA Co.M * Lossee William A. PVT KIA Co.F * Mack George B. PVT KIA Co.B * Mahoney Berthol PVT KIA Co.L * Mann Frank C. Chief Packer KIA Packing Animals * Mason Henry S. CPL KIA Co.E * Mathey Edward Gustave 1LT Co.M * Maxwell Thomas E. PVT KIA Co.L * Meyer William D. PVT KIA Co.M * Miller John PVT KIA Co.L * Milton Francis E PVT KIA Co.F * Mitchell John PVT KIA Co.I * Monroe Joseph PVT KIA Co. F * Moody William PVT KIA Co.A * Moore Andrew J. PVT KIA Co.G * Morris George C. CPL KIA Co.I * McCarthy Charles PVT KIA Co.L * McDonald James PVT KIA Co.A * McDonnell John PVT Co.G * McElroy Thomas Trumpeter KIA Co.E * McGucker John Trumpter KIA Co.I * McGue Peter PVT KIA Co.L * McGuiness John J. PVT KIA Co.G * McIntosh Donald 1LT KIA Co. G * McIlhargey Archibald PVT KIA Co.I * Noshang Jacob PVT KIA Co.I * Nursey Frederick SGT KIA Co.F * O’Bryan John PVT KIA Co.I * O’Connell David J. PVT KIA Co.L * O’Connor Patrick PVT KIA Co.E * Ogden John S. SGT KIA Co.E * O’Hara Miles F. SGT KIA Co.M * Omling Sebastian PVT KIA Co.F * Parker John PVT KIA Co.I * Patton John W. Trumpter KIA Co.I * Perkins Charles Saddler KIA Co.L * Phillips Edgar PVT KIA Co.C * Pitter Felix James. PVT KIA Co. I * Porter James Ezekiel 1LT KIA Co. I * Porter George PVT KIA Co.I * Quinn James PVT KIA Co.I * Rapp John PVT KIA Co.G * Rauter John PVT KIA Co.C * Reed Harry Armstrong Civilian KIA * Reed William PVT KIA Co.I * Rees William H. PVT KIA Co.E * Reibold Christian PVT KIA Co.L * Reily William Van Wyck 2LT KIA Co.E * Reynolds Charles Alexander Civilian KIA Chief Scout * Rix Edward PVT KIA Co.C * Roberts Henry PVT KIA Co.L * Rogers Benjamin F. PVT KIA Co.G * Rogers Walter B. PVT KIA Co.L * Rollins Richard PVT KIA Co.A * Rood Edward PVT KIA Co.E * Rossbury John W. PVT KIA Co.I * Rudden Patrick PVT KIA Co.F * Russell James Henry PVT KIA Co.C * Ryan Daniel CPL KIA Co.C * Saunders Richard PVT KIA Co.F * Schele Henry PVT KIA Co.E * Schmidt Charles PVT KIA Co.L * Scollin Henry M. CPL KIA Co.M * Scott Charles PVT KIA Co.L * Seafferman Henry PVT KIA Co.G * Seiler John CPL KIA Co.L * Selby Crawford Saddler KIA Co.G * Shade Samuel S. PVT KIA Co.C * Sharrow William H. SGM KIA Staff * Shea Jeremiah PVT KIA Co.B * Short Nathan PVT KIA Co.C * Siefous Francis W. PVT KIA Co.F * Siemon Charles Blacksmith KIA Co.L * Siemanson Bent PVT KIA Co.L * Smallwood William PVT KIA Co.E * Smith Albert A. PVT KIA Co.E * Smith Algernon Emory 1LT KIA Co. A * Smith George E. PVT KIA Co.M * Smith James #1. PVT KIA Co.E * Smith James #2 PVT KIA Co.E * Snow Andrew PVT KIA Co.L * Stafford Benjamin F. PVT KIA Co.E * Stanley Edward PVT KIA Co.G * Staples Samuel S. CPL KIA Co.I * Stella Alexander PVT KIA Co.E * St. John Ludwick PVT KIA Co.C * Streing Frederick CPL KIA Co.M * Stuart Alpheus PVT KIA Co.C * Stungewitz Ygnatz PVT KIA Co.C * Sturgis James Garland 2LT KIA Co.M * Sullivan John PVT KIA Co.A * Summers David PVT KIA Co.M * Sweetzer Thomas P. PVT KIA Co.A * Symms Darwin L. PVT KIA Co.I * Tanner James J. PVT KIA Co.M * Tarbox Byron L. PVT KIA Co.L * Teeman William (actually Adams, William A) CPL KIA Co.F * Tessier Edward D. PVT KIA Co.L * Thadus John PVT KIA Co.C * Torrey William A. PVT KIA Co.E * Troy James E. PVT KIA Co.I * Turley Henry PVT KIA Co.M * Tweed Thomas S. PVT KIA Co.L * Van Allan Garrett PVT KIA Co.C * Van Sant Cornelius PVT KIA Co.E * Varden Frank E. 1SGT KIA Co.I * Vetter Michael PVT KIA Co.L * Vickory John SGT KIA Co.F * Voigt Henry C. PVT KIA Co.M * Von Bramer Charles PVT KIA Co.I * Voss Henry Chief Trumpeter KIA Staff * Walker George PVT KIA Co.E * WalshFrederick Trumpeter KIA Co.L * Warner Oscar T. PVT KIA Co.C * Warren Amos B. SGT KIA Co.L * Warren George A. PVT KIA Co.F * Wells Benjamin J. Farrier KIA Co.G * Whaley William B. PVT KIA Co.I * Wild John CPL KIA Co. I * Wilkison John R. SGT KIA Co.F * Winney DeWitt 1SGT KIA Co.K * Wright Willis B. PVT KIA Co.C * Wyman Henry PVT KIA Co.C * Yates George Walter CPT KIA Co. F

Friday, June 23, 2006

Questions on Washington

In the coming weeks, I will be involved with a television program that will be looking at the life of George Washington. As such, I have been give ten questions which will most likely be asked, but depending on time, a couple of them could be cut from the program. However, since it might be hard for some readers to go ahead and watch the program (date to be announced), I figured I would post four of the questions and let you know more or less what my answers are going to be. Enjoy!

Q: Lets look at Washington’s military record. It’s probably a good thing that Washington didn’t live in an age of 24-7 television cable news. As I understand it, Washington lost almost every battle he was in and it was the French who saved the day for the American Revolution. Was Washington a military incompetent?

A: It is true that Washington’s military record was LESS than stellar. When the French and Indian War began, the young Washington only had one military book on tactics under his belt along with fencing lessons. The incident at Fort Necessity was certainly one of Washington’s most disastrous moments as a leader, but he would redeem himself with the successful retreat of Braddock’s forces after the general was mortally wounded. In looking at the entire career of Washington, I contend that he was actually inhibited by the presences of all other European officers around him. In fact, if you look at the battle he won and compared them to the battles he lost, it is interesting to note who IS and who IS NOT there. At the battles of Trenton and Princeton, Washington does not have a Horatio Gates or Charles Lee nagging him. As a result, he commands with his own decisions. By having those influences out of the way, I think Washington was able to be the type of commander he wanted to be instead of the traditional European officer.

Q: As I understand it, Washington went from being a kind of poor hustler to becoming Father of his Country and one of the greatest historical figures of all time. How do you account for this transformation?

A: Washington was never, by any stretch of the imagination, a poor hustler. In fact, the Washington family was one fo the oldest families in Virginia, right along there with the Masons, Randolphs, and Carters. When Washington was born, his father Augustine Washington was move up in the social world. By the time Augustine died, he was only a few years away from moving the Washington family up into the upper tier of the Virginia gentry. As such, the Washington family would have become more influential in Virginia politics. However, the transformation of Washington being the English gentleman planter to a revolutionary to an American is one where a great deal of it comes with the political climate of the country. Washington certainly saw himself as a second class citizen during the French and Indian War when it came to British treatment of colonials. In between the wars, Washington felt that most Britons did not see their American brethren as one and the same. During the Revolution, Washington developed the American identity by realizing that after all the fighting that had been done thus far, there was no going back to being a colony. It was all or nothing. I believe, though, if you want to pinpoint the moment where Washington stands out above all other, look at the Newburgh Conspiracy. With his officers ready to rebel and make Washington king, it is Washington who single handedly stops this coup from occurring with one sentence. He said, “Forgive me gentlemen, not only have I gone gray in the service of my country, but I fear also blind.” At this point, he took his glasses out and put them on. The devotion of one man is what proved that this country was worth fighting for and creating. It is an awe inspiring moment and one people need to think about.

Q: What did Washington have to say about parties and factions?

A: Washington was not a fan of political parties or factions. Indeed, for him, they were the worst thing that could possibly happen for the United States. When he started his presidency, he was certainly an independent. However, by the time the man did retire from public service, it is clear he was a Federalist. I believe Washington ended up being part of a political party namely because it is almost like a natural order of things. When it comes to different situations, no one is ever going to agree on every little detail that is out there. As such, people take sides. I believe Washington ended up going that way by becoming part of a political party because he was going to have to take a stand on issues and those stands mirrored the views of political parties.

Q: I’m going to ask you to do a little alternative history….what would have happened if there had been no George Washington?

A: That is a tough question. A question like that is like asking this people to do this: imagine George Washington naked. It is impossible to do for most people. Indeed, if you get a class room of students to close their eyes and try to do it, they will open their eyes and have a look of horror on their face because you asked them to do it. It was once believed that when Washington was born, he was born with a suit of clothes on and a powdered wig. Once out of his mother, he gave a bow and went upon doing his regular business. If the question were to be answered, I suppose it all comes down to when you want to take Washington out of the picture. (1) If he was never born, or died as an infant, we would most likely still be part of the British Empire. (2) If he died in 1753 while returning to Williamsburg from Fort Le Boeuf, again the answer would take you back to the last one I gave. (3) If his half brother Lawrence Washington had never died, it is difficult to say what would have happened from there. Lawrence would have had a powerful influence on the young Washington and may have been able to be the calming wind to any storm that might have blown into the sails of the young Virginian. (4) More importantly, what if Augustine Washington lived a longer life? If that were to have happened, Washington most likely would have received an education in Scotland and might not have joined the Revolutionary cause. Indeed, he may never have set the ball into motion be not being at Jummonville Glen and thus starting the French and Indian War. As you can see, there are four examples right there and a multitude more to come. I believe in the end, Washington was placed on this Earth for the very reason of bringing into the world this new government and society. If he were not here, I dare say the world would be a VERY different place.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

News on WMDs

Breaking news shows that once again the administration was on the right path when talking about our presence being involved with Iraq. As we all know, the big issue that many people have been going on about now has been the issue of WMDs. Many critics of the war have cited no sign of these weapons and that Saddam never had them. Now critics are going to need to eat a little bit of crow. Recently declassified information shows that coalition forces have discovered up to 500 weapons that were once used by Saddam and his forces. More importantly, there weapons were never found during the many years of weapons inspections done by the “ever so trusting” United Nations.

Click for the full report:

Fact of the Matter

The fact of the matter is people nowadays have absolutely no patience. Our wonderful technological age has seemingly created a generation of people who expect to get things twenty minutes before they thought they needed it. It has been three years since we invaded Iraq and deposed the former dictator. During that time, we have captured the leader, killed his sons, and have taken out a number of leaders of major resistance groups throughout the country. In addition to this, a new government has been built and the people of Iraq are experiencing freedom. While we shouldn’t start dancing in the street, I do believe it is high time a number of people begin to take a step back and begin to look at all information before they start to judge te administration.

Friday, June 16, 2006

We're Off The Road To...Altoona?

Well, tomorrow Mason Conservative's little brother is getting married. Throughout the week, I have been given quotes and words of advice for the young groom about marriage. While all were hilarious, I think I will use my own intelligence and charm to create a few words of wisdom for the couple. As such, I am off to Altoona. Extra credit points for those that can identify the state it is in and the major cities near it!

Thursday, June 15, 2006

A Brief History of Professional Wrestling (because I was bored and wanted to present something new to the blogosphere)

The year was 1905. In New York City, at Madison Square Garden, George Hackenschmidt defeated Tom Jenkins in two straight falls to become what has been recognized as the first ever World Wrestling Heavyweight Champion. While some folks contend that regional wrestling champions can be dated back even further, most consider this particular match to be the dawn of what has been seen as American profession wrestling. For this particular post, I want to look at this industry and give a brief understanding of how it got to where it is today.

For the next forty five years, a number of famous wrestlers would come to the scene. These men include the likes of Frank Gotch, Ed “Strangler” Lewis, Stanislaus Zbyszko, Joe Stretcher, Jim Londos,

However, in 1948, the National Wrestling Alliance is formed. While the first champion of the organization was Orville Brown, Lou Thesz would eventually become the real face of the NWA as World Heavyweight Champion by 1950. The whole principal behind the NWA was that each wrestling territory in the United States would operate independently, but that the NWA Champion would travel to each territory and defend the title there. What was most unique about being the NWA Champion was that the only way you were going to become champion was to be voted champion by the Championship Committee. So it was always in the best interest of each territorial wrestler to do their best, draw big crowds, and put on great matches to get the attention of the committee.

In 1952, the first big pay off to the industry was made as Lou Thesz battled Baron Michele Leone. The most notable part of this night was that the gate collected over $100,000 dollars. This was a rare thing to do at this time. It must be noted that wrestlers were only paid small amounts of money. To be a wrestler full time and do nothing else was a very gutsy thing to do, namely because you were never guaranteed a good, solid pay check.

Now, one would be remiss in not mentioning the name of Gorgeous George Wagner. This is the man virtually all wrestlers today have to, in some way, pay homage to. The reason is this man brought into existence a certain degree of theatrics to wrestling. He dyed his hair blonde, came out to the ring in expensive robes, beautiful women, and a persona that could not be matched.

As mentioned before, if a committee chose who would be champion, sooner or later someone would get ticked off and decided to break off from the NWA. Sure enough, the WWA (World Wrestling Association) decided they wanted to split off and have their own world title. On June 14, 1957, Edouard Carpentier defeated Lou Thesz for the NWA Title. The Championship Committee, however, said that Thesz never lost the title because the match was stopped due to injury. As a result, Thesz got the title back.

Carpentier would be recognized by disgruntled territories as the NWA Champion and he would travel to these different places and lose the title over and over and over again, thus setting up multiple world titles in the United States.

The most notable breakaway from the NWA occurred in 1963. The Northeast promoters were not thrilled when Lou Thesz defeated “The Nature Boy” Buddy Rogers for the NWA Title in a single fall bout. Tradition had always had the matches go for a two out of three fall match. As a result, the Northeast became the World Wide Wrestling Federation, naming Rogers their world champion.

Rogers would lose the title to Bruno Sammartino on May 17, 1963, in a match that lasted only 48 seconds. After that night, Sammartino would reign for nearly eight years. Sammartino was the ultimate champion for the WWWF. He was the Italian immigrant who could bring in the crowds to New York City. By the time he did lose the title, fans were so stunned that their hero lost, the crowd was dead silent when the referee raised the hand of Ivan Koloff. Sammartino would later comment that he thought his hearing was destroyed at some point during the match because of the crowd reaction.

As is the result of survival of the fittest, the territories found themselves beginning to break away from the NWA and try to become stronger than the NWA.

By 1980, there were three major promotions in the United States: WWF (World Wrestling Federation), NWA (National Wrestling Alliance), and the AWA (American Wrestling Association). The wars that would follow from this would be massive. The first victim was AWA. Both NWA and WWF raided the company and took their talent away from them. In fact, the big coup of professional wrestling occurred on January 23, 1984. On that night, Hulk Hogan defeated the Iron Sheik for the title. Before the match was to occur, Verne Gagne, owner of AWA, called the Iron Sheik and asked to break Hogan’s leg and come to the AWA with the WWF belt. Sheik refused to do it and would continue to remain loyal to the McMahon family.

In 1985, the first Wrestlemania was presented on pay per view. On this night, wrestling history was being rewritten. Two years later, the history of old school professional wrestling was washed away in WWF history as it was billed at Wrestlemania 3 that Hulk Hogan and Andre the Giant had never met before in a match. Contrary to popular belief, the two men had met in a classic match in 1980. By not acknowledging this, Bruno Sammartino was erased from history and his legacy was gone.

For the NWA, life could not be any worse than it was by 1990. With so many of the old territories being bought up by Vince McMahon and the WWF, the NWA was being phased out of one territory by having its belt being referred to as the WCW (World Championship Wrestling) Heavyweight Title. In September 1993, WCW pulled out of the NWA, effectively cutting off the title from television.

With WCW and WWF, wrestling fans would be given a six year Monday night war as to the shows battled each other for supremacy. WWF Monday Night Raw versus WCW Monday Night Nitro would create ratings that would go from end to the other. During 1996-1997, Nitro dominated Raw, but by 1998, Raw began to rally back. A new generation of stars were coming into the company and giving the fans everything they wanted. Instead of having old wrestling matches, storylines were created, sex and violence were brought onto the screen, and people were given an outlet for their most carnal pleasures.

However, one organization that broke away from the NWA initially started the switch to the trends we see today. In 1994, ECW (Extreme Championship Wrestling) was created. As the name indicated, the extreme nature of the promotion gave fans a new outlet to watch wrestlers push the limits of their bodies and deliver new types of matches. Although ECW was more of a cult following when it came to the fans, a number of people came out of the company who would go on to bigger and better successes.

In 2001, both WCW and ECW would collapse. There are multiple reasons for their downfall, but the primary reasons are the same thing: television and money. WCW no longer had a network while ECW had no money. WWF remained on top. In 2002, the company changed its name to WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment) and has recently re-launched ECW.

The new ECW was launched, in my opinion, as an attempt to combat the introduction of TNA (Total Nonstop Action) Wrestling. In 2002, the NWA would have a new territory introduce itself and become NWA TNA. This company, owned by the Jarrett family, combined three major pillars of professional wrestling with three of its stars: traditional wrestling in Jeff Jarrett, hardcore wrestling in Raven, and high flying action in AJ Styles.

The future of professional wrestling is unknown. However, its history is very rich. While this is a small outline of it, I guarantee, the rest of it has stories that will make your eyes widen when you hear all about it.

The Line In The Sand

“There are only two sides to this question. Every man must be for the United States or against it. There can be no neutrals in this war; only patriots and traitors.” -Stephen Douglas

Kudos to Mason Conservative and the quote he pulled from Lincoln: A Life of Purpose and Power by Richard Carwardine. While the quote refers to Democrats and their views on the Civil War, one cannot help but feel this quote is applicable to today more than ever. The other day, there was an anti war rally. Attending the event were Senators Hillary Clinton and John Kerry. Clinton spoke of how we cannot cut and run from Iraq by setting a date for troop removal. Upon saying this, she was promptly booed from the crowd. Kerry, on the other hand, said he regretted supporting the war.

It is an interesting situation here as Democrats find themselves once again drawing their battle lines on the issue of Iraq. With the upcoming election, the popular position is to say things in Iraq are not going well, etc. etc. However, the fact is that the troops deserve all of our support no matter what.

Now, I know what a number of people are going to say. We support our troops, but not the war. Really? If that is the case, then why are you saying the hard work they are doing is wrong? If you listen to John Kerry, Jack Murtha, and the folks from Shock Magazine, then you should scream out against the troops, call them baby killers, and seemingly spit on all those brave men and women who are out there, PROTECTING OUR COUNTRY, ENSURING OUR FREEDOMS THAT LIBERALS LOVE TO HIDE BEHIND, AND TRYING TO MAKE THE WORLD A BETTER PLACE.

So, the line has been drawn in the sand. Which side do you plan on standing on?

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

A Wife's Request

(The following story was written by Lori Kimble, a31 year old teacher and proud military wife. Mrs. Kimble, a Californianative, currently lives in Alabama.)

I was sitting alone in one of those loud, casual steak houses that you findall over the country. You know the type--a bucket of peanuts on every table,shells littering the floor, and a bunch of perky college kids racing aroundwith longneck beers and sizzling platters. Taking a sip of my iced tea, I studied the crowd over the rim of my glass.

My gaze lingered on a group enjoying their meal. They wore no uniform toidentify their branch of service, but they were definitely "military:" cleanshaven, cropped haircut, and that "squared away" look that comes with pride. Smiling sadly, I glanced across my table to the empty seat where my husbandusually sat. It had only been a few months since we sat in this very booth,talking about his upcoming deployment to the Middle East. That was when he made me promise to get a sitter for the kids, come back to this restaurant once a month and treat myself to a nice steak. In turn he would treasure thethought of me being here, thinking about him until he returned homeI fingered the little flag pin I constantly wear and wondered where he wasat this very moment. Was he safe and warm? Was his cold any better? Were my letters getting through to him?

As I pondered these thoughts, high pitchedfemale voices from the next booth broke into my thoughts. "I don't know what Bush is thinking about. Invading Iraq. You'd think that man would learn from his old man's mistakes. Good lord. What an idiot! I can't believe he is even in office. You do know, he stole the election."

I cut into my steak and tried to ignore them, as they began an endless tirade running down our president. I thought about the last night I spentwith my husband, as he prepared to deploy. He had just returned from getting his smallpox and anthrax shots. The image of him standing in our kitchen packing his gas mask still gives me chills. Once again the women's voices invaded my thoughts.

"It is all about oil, you know. Our soldiers will go in and rape and steal all the oil they can in the name of 'freedom'. Hmph! I wonder how many innocent people they'll kill without giving it a thought? It's pure greed, you know."

My chest tightened as I stared at my wedding ring. I could still see how handsome my husband looked in his "mess dress" the day he slipped it on my finger. I wondered what he was wearing now. Probably his desert uniform, affectionately dubbed "coffee stains" with a heavy bulletproof vest over it.

"You know, we should just leave Iraq alone. I don't think they are hiding any weapons. In fact, I bet it's all a big act just to increase the president's popularity. That's all it is, padding the military budget at the expense of our social security and education. And, you know what else? We're just asking for another 9-ll. I can't say when it happens again that we didn't deserve it."

Their words brought to mind the war protesters I had watched gathering outside our base. Did no one appreciate the sacrifice of brave men and women, who leave their homes and family to ensure our freedom? Do they evenknow what "freedom" is? I glanced at the table where the young men were sitting, and saw their courageous faces change. They had stopped eating and looked at each otherdejectedly, listening to the women talking.

"Well, I, for one, think it's just deplorable to invade Iraq, and I am certainly sick of our tax dollars going to train professional baby-killers we call a military."

Professional baby-killers? I thought about what a wonderful father my husband is, and of how long it would be before he would see our children again. That's it! Indignation rose up inside me. Normally reserved, pride in my husband gave me a brassy boldness I never realized I had. Tonight one voice will answer on behalf of our military, and let her pride in our troops beknown.

Sliding out of my booth, I walked around to the adjoining booth and placed my hands flat on their table. Lowering myself to eye level with them, smilingly said, "I couldn't help overhearing your conversation. You see, I'm sitting here trying to enjoy my dinner alone. And, do you know why? Because my husband, whom I love with all my heart, is halfway around the world defending your right to say rotten things about him.

"Yes, you have the right to your opinion, and what you think is none of my business. However, what you say in public is something else, and I will not sit by and listen to you ridicule MY country, MY president, MY husband, and all the other fine American men and women who put their lives on the line, just so you can have the "freedom" to complain. Freedom is an expensive commodity, ladies. Don't let your actions cheapen it."

I must have been louder that I meant to be, because the manager came over to inquire if everything was all right. "Yes, thank you," I replied. Then, turning back to the women, I said, "Enjoy the rest of your meal."

As I returned to my booth applause broke out. I was embarrassed for making a scene, and went back to my half eaten steak. The women picked up their check and scurried away. After finishing my meal, and while waiting for my check, the manager returned with a huge apple cobbler ala mode.

"Compliments of those soldiers," he said. He also smiled and said the ladies tried to pay for my dinner, but that another couple had beaten them to it. When I asked who, the manager said they had already left, but that the gentleman was a veteran, and wanted to take care of the wife of "one of our boys."

With a lump in my throat, I gratefully turned to the soldiers and thanked them for the cobbler. Grinning from ear to ear, they came over and surrounded the booth. "We just wanted to thank you, ma'am. You know we can't get into confrontations with civilians, so we appreciate what you did."

As I drove home, for the first time since my husband's deployment, I didn't feel quite so alone. My heart was filled with the warmth of the other diners who stopped by my table, to relate how they, too, were proud of my husband, and would keep him in their prayers. I knew their flags would fly a little higher the next day. Perhaps they would look for more tangible ways to show their pride in our country, and the military who protect her. And maybe, just maybe, the two women who were railing against our country, would pause for a minute to appreciate all the freedom America offers, and the price it pays to maintain it's freedom.

As for me, I have learned that one voice CAN make a difference. Maybe the next time protesters gather outside the gates of the base where I live, Iwill proudly stand on the opposite side with a sign of my own. It will simply say, "Thank You!" To those who fought for our Nation: Freedom has a flavor the protected will never know. GOD BLESS AMERICA!

Please pray for God's protection of our troops and HIS wisdom for theircommanders. Pass this on to as many as you think will respond. "Lord, hold our troops in your loving hands. Protect them as they protect us. Bless themand their families for the selfless acts they perform for us in our time ofneed. I ask this in the name of God."

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Oh...It's On

So the race is now on. It will be Senator George Allen versus James Webb for the Senate. After watching this campaign during the primary season, there are a few thoughts that come to mind. First, Webb is going to need to do some kind of damage control in the state. Webb bloggers certainly had their own influence when it came to the election, but their harsh viciousness certainly put a lot of state Democrats off. In an election with only 3.3% of the voters in the state coming out, it is rather telling that about 1.7% of those people supported Webb. I think one of the things that will have to happen is that the Webb people will need to reach out and get the Miller people to help support their candidate.

While many will say Millerites will support Webb simply to beat Allen, that might not be the case. For a more detailed analysis, check out Mason Conservative and see how he breaks down the Senate Race. As for me, I am not sure a number of Democrats are going to be willing to support Webb. The reason I say this is because, in my opinion, Webb is a DINO: Democrat In Name Only. If you look at what he stands for, he basically stands for the same things Allen does and supports President Bush on a number of major issues. The biggest difference is in Iraq.
Webb is not a big fan of this, but all one person needs to point out is how Webb supported both Bush and Allen in 2000. Will we hear “I supported them before I decided to go against them.” Sounds reminiscent of the “I voted for the war before I voted against it” comment of John Kerry.

Webb supporters might think they will be able to push Iraq and get a victory in Virginia, but they seem to forget Allen isn’t some bush league kind of guy. This is a man who has won many state races, come back from impossible odds, and has done a lot for the state. In addition to this, Allen is coming into this race with some big guns on his side. His campaign manager is Dick Wadahams(sp?), who has won two major elections in Colorado and South Dakota. Added to this, Allen has Ed Gillespie on his team as Treasurer. Gillespie was the former RNC Chair in 2004. With this kind of support, Allen has a team ready to work and win this election.

Already in the bank for Allen is almost ten millions dollars. Webb will need to raise money in the state because the DNC will be looking to win other races across the country and will not be willing to spend most of their money on one race. Let us not forget that in 2002, Democrats made it their mission to try and defeat JEB Bush in Florida’s governor race. The end result was that Republicans were able to hold the line in Congress and make some gains.

As I said before, damage control and reconciliation is going to be needed for Webb. Also, watch how quickly Webb might distance himself from John Kerry’s endorsement. This should be an interesting race to watch. However, I am going to say Allen will win this one namely because he has the ability to communicate his message across the entire state and get the voters to go vote for him. Webb cannot assume for a minute that the all the Kaine voters (or as I called them, Kainenites) back in November ‘04 will come out to vote for him. So…


Monday, June 12, 2006

Orders Must Be Said In English

In an interesting turn of events, there is a restaurant in Philadelphia which placed a sign up saying that when ordering food, the customer must speak English. The restaurant, owned by the grandson of Italian immigrants, says that his sign is a symbol of freedom of speech. While this is true, a civil rights watch dog group says it is in direct violation of Philadelphia’s Fair Practices Ordinance, which states businesses are banned from discriminating customers on the basis of nationality or ethnicity. If the restaurant does not remove their sign, they will be forced to pay a three hundred dollar fine.

Fact of the Matter

The fact of the matter on this situation is that it is rather ironic how people complain on these things. In certain communities, the local Chinese, Japanese, or Spanish restaurant might only speak their languages since the majority of people who come there are those particular ethnicities.

So is it too much for a business owner to make sure their employees can understand the order that they are being given? No. More importantly, should the customer know that when they give their order, the person taking it understands English properly and will make sure the order is taken correctly? You better believe it. I could not tell you the number of times where I went to Wendy’s and the Spanish ladies who take the orders have screwed up.

It is really simple to think about: if you are going to work in the public at a public location, you should know the language of the people.

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Old School Tactics

In recent news, it was discovered that terrorists who were inspired by al Queda were going to make an attack in Canada by setting off bombs and storming into the Canadian Parliament, only to behead the Prime Minister, Stephen Harper. One can only imagine what the Canadians will do now that this has been exposed, but one has to think that these people are going to take the war on terror more seriously now that an attempt like this has been made.
But what are we going to do about these insane people who only want to bomb us and kill innocent people? Well, in looking at some of the old military playbooks of history, I found one plan that might actually work.

In 1911, General John “Blackjack” Pershing was fighting Muslim renegades in the Philippines. Pershing needed to do something about this. These people were being massive thorns in his side and he wanted to take care of this problem once and for all. In order to resolve this, Pershing had captured some of the renegades. He ordered them to dig their own graves, then tied them to stakes. A hog was brought out, killed, and the bullets meant to be used in the firing squad execution was dipped into the hog’s blood. The renegades watched in horror all of this. The soldiers were given their bullets. Ready. Aim. Fire! All but one were killed. Those who were killed were cut loose from their stakes and dropped into the graves. After those bodies fell into the ground, Pershing had the hogs thrown into the graves with the dead renegades and buried them together. The sole survivor was told to tell his comrades about this and then released. The end result was that the Muslim renegades decided not to cause trouble anymore for the next fifty years.

Why did this plan work out so well? The reason is because Pershing put the fear of God into his enemies. If we want to win this War on Terror, then we will need to stop caring about the PC nonsense that is out there and take it to the terrorists.

Errors in History

While I was driving to and from Baltimore to see a few family members, I spent the time in the passenger seat grading my history students’ final exam. As is often the case, history teachers discover new ways in which their students will rewrite history and make up new timelines. After reading the exams, I couldn’t help but feel perhaps I need to share some of these errors.

1. Adolf Hitler was born a Russian.
2. In 1942 Columbus sailed the ocean blue.
3. In 1991 the Civil Rights bill is ratified.
4. In 1867, President Lincoln was assassinated.
5. In 1949 the rush for gold occurred.
6. (When talking about Mein Kempf) When it was first published in 1959 I think it was not
7. In 1642 Columbus sailed the ocean blue.
8. There was also the settlement of Jamestown in 1507.
9. A major downfall during this time was the stock market crash. Another was the Great
Depression during the 1950s.
10. Neil Armstrong was the 1st man on the moon in 1957.
11. (On Andrew Johnson’s impeachment) It was because he wanted to go against the 10 year of
office act. He caused a huge uproar when he fired his secretary of state.
12. In 1859-1861, the Civil War had erupted.

Now the corrections for some are obvious. First, Columbus sailed the ocean blue in 1492. Lincoln was assassinated in 1865. The Civil Rights Act was ratified in 1964. The God Rush was in 1849. Mein Kempf was published in 1929. Jamestown was founded in 1607. The Great Depression was in the 1930s. Neil Armstrong got to the moon in 1969, but Sputnik got into space in 1957. Johnson opposed the Tenure of Office Act. Finally, the Civil War occurred between 1861-1865.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Stop Whining and Take Your Medicine

In the news today there is a story about how the black caucus in Washington is crying “unfair” for the treatment of Representative William Jefferson. For those who do not know, Jefferson was caught on video tape by the FBI accepting a $100,000 bribe and $90,000 was found in his FREEZER at HOME. According to the caucus, the only reason why this case is being pressed is because Jefferson is black. As such, everyone assumes he is guilty without just cause and therefore needs to step down from his post on the Ways and Means Committee. While Jefferson has no intention of stepping aside, many in his own party are calling for him to do that in order to get past this and make ethics a political rallying point in November.

Fact of the Matter

“The bitch set me up!” Remember that famous line? The fact of the matter on this situation is that when your hand is caught in the cookie jar, playing dumb and saying you were doing nothing wrong isn’t going to work. Remember folks, if it looks like a duck, talk likes a duck, walks like a duck, and even tastes like a duck, it is a duck. The FBI FOUND the money. He was CAUGHT on tape. Two of his associates have been put on trial.

Even more galling is that the black caucus says Jefferson is being presumed guilty without a case being heard. But how often is it a Republican is presumed guilty without the benefit of a case? Must the Republican Party be held to a higher standard simply because they are conservative?

We need to remember that ALL our elected officials must be held to a higher standard of responsibility because they are meant to be our authority figures. Tom DeLay was smart enough to resign. IF he is able to beat all of the charges brought against him, then we will see what happens, but the man still stepped aside for the good of his party. I think it is high time Democrats realize that they do not have a veil of purity on their heads. After all, the black caucus might love Democrats, but which party was it that supported slavery?

Thursday, June 08, 2006


Today marks an important victory in the United States’ war on terrorism. Announced only a little over an hour ago, the top insurgent in Iraq, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, was killed in an air raid by US F-16 fighter jets. His body was identified through photographs, scars, and finger prints. On the same day as his death, three car bombs were set off in Baghdad. For what it might be, I am of the opinion those bombs were going to be set off today one way or another. Most likely, they were going off the same time Zarqawi was being killed.

Fact of the Matter

The fact of the matter on this is that the death of the man who is considered the number three man in al-Queda will deliver a major blow to terrorists around the world. As it was pointed out by military analysts on television, if the United States can get information about the inside of the power circle for our newest enemy an use it to our advantage. This death shows that our intelligence gathering DOES pay off. This death DOES show that a new chapter in Iraq’s history is about to unfold. However, more importantly, this death DESTROYS the liberal media’s machine that is bent to undermine the US military and our job in the War on Terror.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Graduation Day

Congratulation to the Bishop Denis J. O'Connell High School Class of 2006 on their graduation! In looking at the list of graduates, I realized that I have come into contact with half of the entire class in two years time. These people were wonderful as students and I do believe I did my part to help prepare them for the future.

I must confess I came very close to missing their graduation. I had to take care of somethings in Alexandria and was held up there. So I had to drive into DC and go to the National Shrine, where the graduation was being held. I got into DC and thought I was doing well, but inadvertantly got lost! So as a drove around the wrong part of DC, I kept an eye on the clock and was thinking I would miss their graduation. Already I knew I would never be able to forgive myself or look at any of them in the eye because of it. As I was almost ready to give up and make the harrowing journey back to sweet Virginia, I saw the spire of the National Shrine and drove for it.

I arrived with only a few minutes to spare. So I did my infamous hundred yard dash. Sure enugh, some of my kids saw me and cheered me on as I ran. Only for them would I ever drive into DC and make an entrance like that. The entire ceremony was good and I realized just how much I will miss all of them. I got a few pics, which will hopefully get posted below in the next day or two.

After the graduation, I made the harrowing trip back to Virginia. My only comment on DC is that no one should ever drive in that city. Too many one way streets if you ask me. So as I got lost, yet again, in that city, I figured so long as I was making my way towards the Potomac River I was in good shape. Then I hit Georgetown. Hmmm, says I. Thankfully, a failed relationship with a girl in Maryland had taught me a few things about traveling through that state, so I knew as long as I kept moving in the direction I was going, sooner or later I would hit a familiar road. Low and behold, I found the KEY BRIDGE! And so as I cross the Potomac, I just screamed out, "VIRGINIA! VIRGINIA! VIRGINIA!"

After hearing my tale, I must say to my kids who will hopefully be gracing this site soon enough, Congratualtions everyone. You make me proud and I hope I can help you in any way possible in your future endeavors.