Police Work, Politics and World Affairs, Football and the ongoing search for great Scotch Whiskey!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

The end of the American Republic.

Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children's children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.

I was drawn to this Reagan quote as I contemplated the death of the American Republic.

This morning started out pretty crappy. I really didn’t want to get up early but I had to get to the pistol range to practice on my 40 cal, to get my old Taurus 357 on my card and then get to the rifle range. Well....the month sitting in the library didn’t help. I scared the hell out of the target but at least I got the Taurus as a registered off duty weapon.

Totally screwed up on the rifle range so I get to go back...this sucks. And as I was getting pissed off in the hot sun I checked Drudge and got the news of the Obamacare ruling. One of the instructors on the range was even more pissed off than me but we both agreed to stop thinking about this till after the range closed. We are armed men.

I haven’t read the full ruling but I will by this weekend. I am shocked Kennedy apparently wanted to pull the entire bill and the supposedly conservative original intent Chief Justice contort the Constitution like this. To have the leftists on the court twist the limits on federal power to meaninglessness is no surprise. To have a Republican nominated Chief Justice join them goes beyond belief. Hell, will George W Bush call Roberts his biggest mistake? Speaking of hell, Teddy Kennedy got one big grin oh his ugly face.

I could have listened to B Hussein Obama spike the football (I am an intelligence geek and I’m used to reading the propaganda of my country’s enemies) but I could’t bring myself to do it. It would be worse than listening to that gutless wonder John Boehner. In case you missed it with the ruling news the Republican leadership in the Congress again caved, dropping approval of the Keystone Pipeline from the new Transportation Bill. I hear they wanted to get it done before the 4th of July. So again, the question comes why the hell do we have them? And what do we do now?

Well I did one thing. I went to Romney’s website and set up for a monthly donation. Never in my worse nightmare would I think I would donate to a RINO’s RINO like Mitt but I have to so something and Romney sucks lightyears less than B Hussein Obama. And I’ll look at what I can do for Ted Cruz (donation, working on his campaign, etc). We don’t need a Brown in the Senate, especially from Texas.

At least the people who put Republicans the House are pissed off and will start taking actions.

Well I picked up some scotch on my way home and if there was a justification for drinking early, this was it. It has come to this. I thought is was as screwed up as the day is long our liberty was so dependent on the judgement of nine lawyers. Now it depends if a Republican Party leadership, infested with gutless idiots can repeal this early next year. If not, I hate to say it, this American Republic is finished.


A great end to a really screwed up day.

Around 700pm I got a phone call from a buddy, the initial test list came out and I'm at number 100 on the list. Now I just need to get through assessment in August.

Oh, Romney has raised three and a half million since the Obamacare ruling.

Time for some 15 year old!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The Army does it again...

I was deployed to Kuwait in 2005 when the Army DCUs were fielded. I thought the design poor and the velcro for patches was very unfunctional. Speaking with a couple of guys who rode the convoys through Iraq and they generally hated them. One sergeant told me at night in the dry climate if you did anything with the velcro (open a pocket, etc) it would spark. Not a big one but if you were on guard duty and didn't want to be seen it could be a problem. I would have never thought of that.

Well the Army has finally admitted this uniform was a disaster. And they of course find this out after billions of dollars and years of negative feedback.

Army Drops Universal Camouflage After Spending Billions

After eight years and billions of dollars, the Army has given up on an ambitious effort to clothe its soldiers in a "universal camouflage pattern." The grey uniform, widely issued and widely loathed, was supposed to blend in equally well in all environments, from desert sand to green forest to city streets. It just didn't. Now the Army's going back to the old, obvious approach of having different designs for different places.

"It definitely makes a difference in Afghanistan, because Afghanistan is primarily brown, and there's no brown in the universal pattern," said one Army officer who's deployed wearing the universal camouflage, also called the Advanced Combat Uniform (ACU). Under pressure from unhappy soldiers and the late Rep. John Murtha, the Army had already given up on the universal pattern for troops in Afghanistan, who now wear a "multi-cam" design better suited to the terrain.

Soldiers elsewhere around the world, though, still have to make do with the universal-pattern ACU -- or work around it by finding unofficial sources of uniforms. "The ACU does fine in the urban environment," the officer said, where its grey shades blend in with concrete (see the picture). But elsewhere, he went on, "guys use the old woodland pattern" -- a discontinued US uniform -- "when they're out in Thailand or the Philippines.... or they'll trade their ACUs out with the locals."...

...So the problem isn't that the Army tried to do something simple and messed it up. It's that the Army tried something impossibly difficult. Short of some kind of sci-fi cloaking device or invisibility field a la Predator or Star Trek -- which some people are actually working on -- there's no way to come up with a single color scheme or camo pattern that blends in equally well in all environments. "In this case the desire for standardization seems to have transcended common sense," said Loren Thompson, a defense industry consultant and analyst who often writes for AOL Defense. "It's obvious that a pattern working well in a jungle would not work well in most deserts."...

I was speaking with a Marine major back in 07 on the uniform and he told me the Army and USMC were working together on a universal BDU. But at some point the Marines said "Sorry, we need two uniforms, a woodland and a desert one....". The Army of course went on with it and ended up with a complete waste. Now they will spend billions on a new duty uniform. Hey guys, how about you simply copy the Marines. Unlike what you just developed, this is useful.

Finally it's over!

Passed the test with a 84 which should get me to the next phase (oral evaluation) and promoted sometime in the next two years.

So I get to chill a bit for tonight, then going the weekend with my friend Jim riding the Three Sisters in the Texas Hill Country. After all these days in a small library room I need some space. I'm looking forward to reading for pleasure for a change. And posting to the blog regularly.

So onward to watching the new Dallas, reding my Bogart bio, a good cigar and some fine scotch. Life is improving!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Sleeping in tents...

From Arizona..

Inmates gather next to Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio as he walks through a Maricopa County Sheriff's Office jail called "Tent City" in Phoenix on Saturday, June 23, 2012 during a tour for church leaders. Critics of Arpaio gathered outside the facility Saturday for a rally to call for the closure of the complex of canvas jail tents. (AP Image)

PHOENIX — Several thousand critics of Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio gathered outside "Tent City" Saturday night for a rally calling for the closure of the sheriff's complex of canvas jail tents.

Organizers say conditions at "Tent City" complex are inhumane. The sheriff has said he doesn't see any problems with housing inmates in tents and often points out that some members of the U.S. military live in tents.

"We are with you," protesters chanted in both English and Spanish, in hopes that inmates could hear them.

Most protesters held candles and wore yellow T-shirts that read "Standing on the side of love," a slogan of the Unitarian Universalist Association, which was holding its annual convention in Phoenix this weekend.

The rally was the latest effort by the association to promote social justice, association spokesman John Hurley said. The Unitarians organized the rally along with the immigrant rights group Puente Arizona.

The Rev. Peter Morales, president of the Unitarian Universalist Association, attended the rally and was among a group that accompanied Arpaio on a tour of Tent City. In 2010, Morales was arrested at a protest in Phoenix over Arizona's immigration law.

Rachel Walden, who works at the Unitarian Universalist Association headquarters in Boston, said the group also gathered Saturday to protest the immigration law.

"We wanted to stand in solidarity with the immigration groups," she said. "We just wanted to be there to have a big presence and say this is wrong."...

...The jail complex in west Phoenix was the site of a January 2010 protest that drew 10,000 immigrant rights advocates and was marked by a clash between a small group of protesters and police officers.

The county's jails were closed to visitors on Saturday because of the rally.
All told I've lived in Arizona for over a year of my life and I don't argue, the heat is stifling. Now I suggest something for these men and women in the striped underwear, etc. You don't like the place, don't break the law!

Maybe Jim Carrey can help you see the light!

Geopolitical Weekly: Putin's Visit and Israeli-Russian Relations, June 26, 2012

By George Friedman

Russian President Vladimir Putin arrived in Israel on June 25 for his first state visit since retaking the presidency. The visit was arranged in mid-May, and so at least part of the agenda was set, given events in Syria and Egypt. The interesting thing about Israel and Russia is that while they seem to be operating in the same areas of interest and their agendas seem disconnected, their interests are not always opposed. It is easy to identify places they both care about but more difficult to identify ways in which they connect. It is therefore difficult to identify the significance of the visit beyond that it happened.

An example is Azerbaijan. Russia is still a major weapons provider for Azerbaijan, but the Israelis are now selling it large amounts of weapons and appear to be using it as a base from which to observe and, according to rumors, possibly attack Iran. Russia, which supports Armenia, a country Azerbaijan fought a war with in the late 1980s and early 1990s and technically still is at war with, ought to oppose Israel's action, particularly since it threatens Iran, which Russia does not want attacked. At the same time, Russia doesn't feel threatened by Israeli involvement in Azerbaijan, and Israel doesn't really care about Armenia. Both are there, both are involved and both think Azerbaijan is important, yet each operates in ways that ought to conflict but don't.

The same is true in the more immediate case of Syria, where its downing of a Turkish plane has created an unexpected dynamic for this visit. To think about this we need to consider Russian and Israeli strategy and its odd lack of intersection in Syria.

Russia's Need for a U.S. Distraction

Russia has complex relationships in the region, particularly focused on Syria and Iran. Russia's interest in both countries is understandable. Putin, who has said he regarded the breakup of the Soviet Union as a geopolitical catastrophe, views the United States as Russia's prime adversary. His view is that the United States not only used the breakup to extend NATO into the former Soviet Union in the Baltics but also has tried to surround and contain Russia by supporting pro-democracy movements in the region and by using these movements to create pro-American governments. Putin sees himself as being in a duel with the United States throughout the former Soviet Union.

The Russians believe they are winning this struggle. Putin is not so much interested in dominating these countries as he is in being certain that the United States doesn't dominate them. That gives Russia room to maneuver and allows it to establish economic and political relations that secure Russian interests. In addition, Russia has tremendously benefited from the U.S. wars in the Islamic world. It is not so much that these wars alienated Muslims, although that was beneficial. Rather, what helped the Russians most was that these wars absorbed American strategic bandwidth.

Obviously, U.S. military and intelligence capabilities that might have been tasked to support movements and regimes in Russia's "near abroad" were absorbed by conflict in the Islamic world. But perhaps even more important, the strategic and intellectual bandwidth of U.S. policymakers was diverted. Russia became a secondary strategic interest after 9/11. While some movements already in place were supported by the United States, this was mostly inertia, and as the Russians parried and movements in various countries splintered, the United States did not have resources to respond.

The Russians also helped keep the United States tied up in Afghanistan by facilitating bases in Central Asia and providing a corridor for resupply. Russia was able to create a new reality in the region in which it was the dominant power, without challenge.

The Russians therefore valued the conflict in the Middle East because it allowed Russia to be a secondary issue for the only global power. With the war in Iraq over and the war in Afghanistan ending, the possibility is growing that the United States would have the resources and bandwidth to resume the duel on the Russian periphery. This is not in the Russian interest. Therefore, the Russians have an interest in encouraging any process that continues to draw the United States into the Islamic world. Chief among these is supporting Iran and Syria. To be more precise, Russia does not so much support these countries as it opposes measures that might either weaken Iran or undermine the Syrian government. From the Russian point of view, the simple existence of these regimes provides a magnet that diverts U.S. power.

Israel's Position on Syria

This brings us back to Putin's visit to Israel. From the Russian point of view, Syria is not a side issue but a significant part of its strategy. Israel has more complex feelings. The regime of Syrian President Bashar al Assad, while the Soviets were allied with it, represented a significant danger to Israel. With the fall of the Soviet Union, Syria lost its patron and diminished as a threat. Since then, the Syrians under al Assad had two virtues from the Israeli point of view. The first was that they were predictable. Their interests in Lebanon were built around financial and political goals that could be accommodated by the Israelis in exchange for limitations on the sorts of military activity that Israel could not tolerate. Furthermore, Syria's interests did not include conflict with Israel, and therefore Syria held Hezbollah in check until it was forced out of Lebanon by the United States in 2005.

The second advantage of the al Assad regime in relation to Israel was that it was not Sunni but Alawite, a Shiite sect. During the 2000s, Israel and the West believed the main threat emanated from the Sunni world. Al Qaeda, the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas were all Sunni. Over the past decade, a corrupt minority Alawite regime has appeared preferable to Israel than a coherent majority radical Islamist regime in the north. It wasn't certain how radical it would be, but at the same time there appeared to be more risk on the Sunni side than on the Shiite side.

Israel's position on the al Assad regime has shifted in the past year from hoping it would survive to accepting that it couldn't and preparing for the next regime. Underlying this calculus was a reconsideration of which regime would be more dangerous. With the withdrawal of the United States from Iraq and with Iran filling the vacuum that was left, Iran became a greater threat to Israel than Hamas and the Sunnis. Therefore, Israel now desires a Sunni regime in Syria that would block Iranian ambitions.

In this sense, Israeli and Russian interests continue to diverge. At the same time, the Israelis are aware that they have very little influence over what happens in Syria. They are bystanders hoping that things work out for them. Whether they favor this or that faction in Syria matters little. Indeed, open Israeli support for any faction can hurt that side. Therefore, Syria is a demonstration of the limits of Israeli power. What happens in Syria matters a great deal, but Israel lacks the power and influence to have an impact.

Coinciding Interests

The Russians do have some power and influence. The weapons they supply to the Syrian government can help the regime survive. Their ability to block or circumvent sanctions helps both Iran and Syria. Russia cannot impose a solution, but it may be able to create the circumstances under which the United States is drawn in and diverted. At the same time, it must be remembered that Russia has its own problem with Islamic in the northern Caucasus. These groups are mostly Sunni, but there are a wide variety of Sunnis. While the Russians want to prevent a radical Sunni group in Syria, they could on this level live with a more moderate Sunni group if they cannot keep al Assad or his regime in power.

Putin's visit is intended to make the United States nervous and to try to lay the groundwork for shifts in Israel's relation to Russia that could pay off in the long run. The Israelis, however, do have things they need from Putin. They cannot control regime change in Syria, but to some extent Russia can. And here Israeli and Russian interests coincide. Israel would tolerate the survival of the al Assad regime as long as Syria does not become an Iranian satellite.

Russia could counterbalance Iran if al Assad's regime survived. If, on the other hand, his regime fell, Israel and Russia both have an interest in a moderate Sunni regime. This is where Russia must make a decision -- assuming it has the power to affect the outcome. In the long run, a moderate Sunni regime is in its interest. In the short run, it wants a regime that creates the greatest unease for the United States -- that is, either the al Assad regime as an Iranian asset or a radical Islamist regime.

There is a point where all this comes together. Turkey has decided, in response to the downing of its aircraft, to call a meeting of NATO. Turkey is not prepared to unilaterally intervene in Syria, but having lost an aircraft it could ask for a NATO intervention of some sort. Turkey has been hostile to al Assad from early on, and this gives it the opportunity to invoke the alliance under its common defense policy.

How NATO will respond is unknown, save that the rhetoric will be intense and the desire for combat restrained. Neither Russia nor Israel would be upset by a NATO intervention. From the Russian point of view, a NATO intervention involving large amounts of U.S. forces would be the best it could hope for, especially if NATO gets bogged down, as tends to happen in such interventions. From the Israeli point of view, having NATO take responsibility for Syria would be the best possible outcome by far.

Of course, this was not on the table when the Israeli-Russian meeting was set up. At that time, the meeting was meant to explore the differences on subjects such as Syria. But with recent events, the benefits of possible NATO involvement, however unlikely, are something that Russia and Israel agree on. Of course, neither is a member of NATO, and getting any NATO country to commit troops to Syria is unlikely. But what was likely to be a pointless discussion now has some point.

Israel would like Russia as a mild counterweight to the United States but without disrupting relations with the United States. Russia would like to have additional options in the Middle East beyond Iran and Syria but without alienating those states. Neither is likely. When we dig into the strange relationship between two countries deeply involved in each other's areas of interest yet never quite intersecting, an answer begins to emerge.

There is little conflict between Russia's and Israel's interests because neither country is nearly as powerful as it would like to be in the region. Russia has some options but nothing like it had during the Cold War. Israel has little influence in the outcome in Syria or in Egypt.

Still, it is in the interest of both countries to make themselves appear to be weightier than they are. A state visit should help serve that purpose.
Putin's Visit and Israeli-Russian Relations

Good news from the Cereal State!

Convicted killer of Riverside police officer receives death sentence

A judge Monday ordered Earl Ellis Green sentenced to death for fatally shooting Riverside police officer Ryan Bonaminio at point-blank range as the officer pleaded for his life.

Riverside County Superior Court Judge Jean Pfeiffer Leonard declined to overturn the jury's verdict early this month that Earl Ellis Green, 46, should face capital punishment for the November 2010 slaying of the Iraq War veteran, who had been on the department for four years at the time of the killing.

Jurors convicted Green of first-degree murder with special circumstances and weeks later determined he should receive the death penalty.

Prosecutors Monday told the judge she should not show mercy because Green was not merciful to the defenseless officer.

On the night of the shooting, Green, a convicted felon then on parole, jumped out of a stolen big rig that had been involved in a hit-and-run accident and ran into Riverside's Fairmount Park.

Bonaminio, 27, chased Green into a parking lot at an adjacent church. When the officer slipped in the mud near a stairwell, Green emerged and bludgeoned the officer with a metal pipe, prosecutors told the jury.

Green then took the injured officer's .40-caliber semiautomatic handgun and chambered a new round, according to the prosecution.

"The officer was already pretty much helpless, unconscious and defenseless when he was executed with his own gun," Riverside Dist. Atty. Paul Zellerbach said.

Stephen J. McQueen, a homeless man who volunteered at the church, told the jury he witnessed the shooting while smoking a cigarette in the parking lot. Bonaminio held his hands up and told the killer, "Don't do it. Don't do it," McQueen testified.

In his opening statement, prosecutor Michael Hestrin said Green's first two shots missed the officer. Green then walked up to Bonaminio, severely injured and on his knees, and fired at the back of the officer's head from a foot or so away.

"He died there, on the cold and dirty asphalt,'' Hestrin told the jury.

This won't bring Officer Bonaminio back to his family, but hopefully he rest a little easier.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Officer Down


Police Officer Celena Hollis
Denver Colorado Police Department
EOW: Sunday, June 24, 2012
Age: 32
Tour: 7 years

Police Officer Celena Hollis was shot and killed while attempting to breakup a fight at a jazz festival in Denver's City Park shortly after 8:00 pm.

Two groups of people had begun to fight and Officer Hollis intervened, attempting to stop the fight. One of the subjects involved in the fight opened fire with a handgun, striking Officer Hollis in the head. She was transported to a local hospital where she succumbed to her wounds.

One subject was taken into custody at the scene.

Officer Hollis had served with the Denver Police Department for seven years and acted as the president of the Denver Black Police Officers Association. She is survived by her daughter.

Rest in Peace Sis…We’ll Continue The Watch

Day is done, Gone the sun, From the lake, From the hills, From the sky. All is well, Safely rest, God is nigh. 

Sunday, June 24, 2012

The 90% Solution

It's Two and a wake up.

I've been studying a massive amount of information by basically reading one third of each reference a day. I will finish my final read on Monday so I can have Tuesday to concentrate on areas I don't have a full warm and fuzzy on. I'll be in the library probably till 800PM and then get home. Get up at around 515 Wednesday, ride in early, breakfast at a IHOP and I will be at the test site over an hour before test time.

Win, lose or draw I can say I did my best to get ready. And I am so ready for this to be over. I want to get back to normal. I want to get back to work. I got things to do around the house I've put back because I was in a library. And if I don't go to work, I don't feel right.

It's almost over.

My friend Jim and I are taking a boys weekend next weekend in the Texas Hill Country. I need to decompress and Beth needs to get ready for a final. I really look forward to taking my Harley through the Three Sisters.

Well I finished my first third of the final read today in the library and I come home for dinner. I said to hell with it and took a break. I watched the first half of Patton on Blu Ray and then stopped. Went outside, smoked an excellent Romeo y Julieta Reserve and some 12 year old Glenlivet and finished my 3x5 cards. Finished with a gin and tonic and went upstairs to get with Beth who is making me endure Bridezilla. I loath anything calling itself reality TV because it's a real as Nancy Pelosi's face but she love them.

Oh well, this too should end soon.

As she watches this I type this post and listen to Mark Levin on my iPhone. Gotta get up early for studying.

It's almost over.

Have a great week!

PS: One good thing about my last few weeks is I discovered a great book and I for the first time in decades I actually checked out a book. Tough without a Gun. A bio of Humphrey Bogart. I'll start this tonight to get me past Bridezilla! :<).

Saturday, June 23, 2012

How we die?

Interesting look at what puts at room temperature. See how things have changed and how medicine has advanced.

How we die (in one chart)
The New England Journal of Medicine looks through 200 years of back issues to understand how we die differently:

The first thing to notice here is how much our mortality rate has dropped over the course of a century, largely due to big reductions in infectious diseases like tuberculosis and influenza.

The way we talk about medical conditions has changed, too. NEJM finds that, back in 1812 – the first year it published – reports of spontaneous combustion were taken quite seriously by the medical community, as were debates over how, exactly one would be injured by a close-call with a cannonball:

Doctors agreed that even a near miss by a cannonball — without contact — could shatter bones, blind people, or even kill them (1812f). Reports of spontaneous combustion, especially of “brandy-drinking men and women,” received serious, if skeptical, consideration (1812g). And physicians were obsessed with fevers — puerperal, petechial, catarrhal, and even an outbreak of “spotted fever” in which some patients were neither spotted nor febrile (1812e).

Fake cop pulls over a real one

Hi Mom, I'm an idiot!

Anthony Mastrogiovanni: Police Impersonator Makes Mistake Of Pulling Over Real Off-Duty Cop

UPPER MARLBORO, Md. (CBSDC) — A Crofton man was arrested for impersonating a police officer after he pulled over an actual off-duty Capitol Heights police officer Wednesday afternoon in Upper Marlboro.

Prince George’s County Police say 29-year-old Anthony Kenneth Mastrogiovanni...was driving a white pickup truck on southbound Route 301 when he attempted to stop the Capitol Height Police Officer in his personal vehicle around 4:09 p.m.

The off-duty officer identified himself as being a Capitol Heights Police Officer to Mastrogiovanni who, in turn, said he was a military police officer from Louisiana and advised the officer that he was speeding.

The officer then told the suspect that he had no jurisdiction. He also informed him that having blue and red emergency equipment installed on his truck was illegal in the state.

Mastrogiovanni reportedly then fled the scene at Route 301 and Trade Zone Avenue.

The Capitol Heights officer followed him and contacted Prince George’s County police. PGPD was successfully able to stop the suspect.

Mastrogiovanni was arrested and charged with impersonating a police officer and released on his own personal recognizance.

Authorities are asking that that anyone who thinks they may have been stopped by Mastrogiovanni to Prince George’s County Police at...

I remember when I was in college one of my high school buddies had graduated and was working as a rent a cop. He was doing this for a bit...and then he pulled over an off duty deputy. Idiot.

This should not give you a warm and fuzzy

One of the maxims of life is a bureaucracy has only one purpose in life: To exist. Nothing shows this as well as the TSA.

Now a congreswoman wants to expand it from just airports to all mass transit. Granted, a first step, but a first step.
House bill extends TSA intel sharing to mass transit

The Transportation Security Administration already shares intelligence it collects with airports. Now a House bill would expand TSA's intel sharing to local mass transit systems as well.
Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Calif.), the bill's sponsor, said the legislation is a "common sense approach" to fighting terrorism. The House passed the bill May 30 and the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs is now considering the bill.

In an interview with The Federal Drive with Tom Temin and Emily Kopp, Speier said the bill creates "fusion centers" where TSA can provide intel to local law enforcement and emergency management officials.

"We have put in place through TSA a very elaborate system [in airports]. We all go through those metal detectors and those secondary searches. And we've put a lot of focus on the airlines for good reason. But we have neglected the mass transit components, generally speaking," she said.

Speier said 2 million people fly each day compared with more than 5 million who ride the subway each day in New York City alone. She pointed out that the most recent terrorist attacks have been on mass transit. Also, when U.S. Special Forces raided Osama Bin Laden's compound last year, intelligence gathered revealed the next attack was intended for mass transit.

"The writing is on the wall. We need to be better prepared than we are right now," Speier said.

Transit riders probably won't see more TSA agents in subways or bus stops, though, Speier said. The expanded TSA role falls more on analysts, she said.

We should see none. They are a complete waste. A few months ago I had to assist TSA at a bus facility. Talk about a waste of time. If they had "arrested" anyone we would have had to transport him and book him for local charges. So why the hell are you here?

What a waste. The problem is our future administration will probably not change this.

Friday, June 22, 2012

I think I'm starting to like this guy.....

I can't recall how the hell I found this man, but I'm starting to like him.

Just finished my 3x5 cards on my two books for the test. The Jack Daniels helped. Wednesday cannot come soon enough.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

A view of a cop......

My friend Darren at RotLC sent me this...it's great!
Confessions of...a California Highway Patrol Officer

Summer driving season is almost here, which means you'll soon be on the lookout for a great roadside stand, a pretty rest stop—and that eagle-eyed cop on the side of the highway. We asked Keith Dittimus, a 30-year veteran of the California Highway Patrol—"CHiP"—what it's like on the other side of the flashing light


I grew up in the era of theCHiPsTV show, and for five and a half years I couldn't believe I got paid to ride a motorcycle—it was so much fun. A lot of the parades and a lot of the motorcade processions are done exclusively with motorcycles, so you get to do things that officers in a car don't.


In Japan and in many Asian countries, the CHiP is very, very popular, so when the tourists see the Highway Patrol officers at, say, Vista Point near the Golden Gate Bridge, they all want to take your picture. They'll point and go, "CHiP!" So you let them take a picture sitting on top of the motorcycle. It builds goodwill for the department, and you start to spend an inordinate amount of time—delightfully so—taking pictures with tourists. I'm probably on a couple thousand mantles.


During my 13 years in the Protective Services Division-PSD-I worked details for presidents Reagan, Bush Sr., Clinton, and their vice presidents. I had a funny experience with Nancy Reagan. We were in the Secret Service command room at a hotel. There was a knock. I opened the door, and she was standing there with a tin of cookies for the Secret Service guys. I'm just standing there, staring at her, like, "This is Nancy Reagan!" And she's like, "Well... would you take the cookies?"
I've heard that about the Reagan's...they were very good to their security staff.

Hollywood has done a lot to make the public believe that we live for high-speed chases. That couldn't be further from the truth. Anyone who's ever put on a badge and been in a close, hairy chase doesn't like them. Your adrenaline does go through the roof, but then you realize that there's a lot at stake. A close friend was in a pursuit years ago, and an innocent lady—a mother-was killed. He was torn up over it. That's the part the public has to realize—we're people just like everybody else. We have feelings.

That is God's truth. I've had an accident in more than one chase and one friend of mine was almost killed when his tire blew out at 90 MPH. We think he hit a pothole on the freeway. His car flipped over three times and it took John two years to recover.

So many people try to make excuses. One time I stopped a doctor in Marin County, and he said he'd been called to the local hospital to perform an emergency surgery. I was skeptical, but I didn't want to chance jeopardizing someone's life. I took his driver's license and told him I'd have CHiP dispatch confirm with the hospital while I followed him to the ER. We got about a mile down the highway before he pulled over and confessed that he was late for a dinner date. I can assure you, that was one expensive date! When a highway patrolman pulls you over, they're pulling you over because they observed you doing something. Just be honest and straightforward. A lot of times, you can walk away with a verbal warning and not get a ticket. We see so many dishonest people, when somebody finally is honest with you, it's gratifying enough to give them a break!
Nine times out of ten, just be honest and we'll cut you some slack. It's that simple.

Have a great day!

Security Weekly: Are Syria's Rebels Getting Foreign Support?, June 21, 2012

Are Syria's Rebels Getting Foreign Support?

By Scott Stewart

A video recently posted to the Internet depicting an improvised explosive device (IED) attack in Syria has garnered a great deal of attention. A Syrian militant group called the Hawks Brigade of the Levant claimed the attack, which targeted a Syrian government armored troop bus as it traveled along a road near a rebel stronghold in the Idlib governorate. According to the group, the attack depicted in the video employed a type of IED called an explosively formed penetrator (EFP). Though the video was shot from a fairly long distance away, it does appear that the IED punched a substantial and focused hole through the armored bus -- precisely the type of effect that would be expected if an EFP were employed against such a target.

EFPs are a logical tool for militants to use against superior government forces that are heavily dependent upon armor. EFPs pose a significant threat to armored vehicles, which the Syrian military has utilized extensively, and quite effectively, in its campaign against Syrian rebel groups.

Studying the IED technology employed by a militant group is an important way to determine the group's logistics situation and trajectory. It can also be a way to discern if a group is receiving outside training and logistical assistance.

Explosively Formed Penetrators

An explosively formed penetrator, sometimes called an explosively formed projectile, is a simple device composed of a case, a liner and explosive filler. EFPs have been part of many countries' military inventories for years. The U.S. Army, for example, added the M2 Selectable Lightweight Attack Munition (aptly named the SLAM) to its inventory in 1990. Improvised EFP devices can also be constructed by non-state actors; they were widely used to target U.S. military vehicles in Iraq.

The employment of an EFP device in the field also requires a detonator and a firing chain to initiate the detonator. The firing chain can vary widely, from a hardwired command-detonated system to an improvised victim-actuated system that is triggered inadvertently by the target and involves modifying things like the infrared safety beam from a garage door opener.

The case of an improvised EFP is often constructed from a short section of well-casing pipe with a steel plate welded to one end. A small hole is drilled in the plate to allow a blasting cap to be inserted. The pipe is then filled with high explosive, and a metal liner -- most often made of copper -- is affixed over the open end of the pipe.

EFPs utilize the same general principle as a shaped charge. In a traditional shaped-charge munition like the warhead on an anti-tank rocket, a thin metal cone is used to achieve a focusing effect. When crushed, the concave metal cone in the warhead becomes a molten, high-velocity projectile that, with a jet of super-heated gas from the explosive, penetrates the armor. However, in order for a shaped charge to work most effectively and achieve maximum penetration it must detonate at a precise, relatively short distance from its target. In a munition like a rocket-propelled grenade, an empty space between the nose of the warhead and the copper cone generally provides the required standoff distance.

The EFP munition is somewhat like a traditional shaped charge, but it incorporates a metal liner with less of an angle. So instead of forming a cone, the liner is more of a concave lens or dish shape. The EFP also uses a heavier liner that is formed into a slug or "penetrator" when the device is detonated. The penetrator is then propelled at the target at an extremely high velocity. The difference in the shape and weight of the liner allows the EFP to be deployed from a greater distance than a traditional shaped charge.

Because the components required to construct EFPs are simple, such devices can be fabricated inexpensively and out of readily available materials. Well-casing pipe and steel plate, for example, are widely available in almost any region of the world. Moreover, making the EFP casing from these elements requires little skill and simple machinery, such as a welder, a grinder and a drill.

The copper liner is the sophisticated part of the device, requiring a bit more precision in its fabrication. If the liner is not formed in a precise manner, the devices will tend to spit copper shrapnel rather than create a truly effective penetrator. However, once the proper shape of the liner is determined, either by copying the shape of the liner in a professionally designed EFP device or by trial and testing, the liners can be fabricated somewhat easily using a form and a hydraulic press.

Because of its ability to focus the force of an explosive charge, a small EFP containing just a few kilograms of high explosive can cause far more damage to an armored vehicle than can a traditional IED made with much more high-explosive material. This means a militant bombmaker can make hundreds of EFP devices from the explosive filler required to make one large vehicle-borne improvised explosive device (VBIED). And since they are small, EFPs are easily concealed and harder to detect than larger devices. They can also be placed next to the road rather than having to be buried in the road like an anti-tank mine. However, to function effectively and to project the penetrator into the optimal area of a vehicle, an EFP device does need to be positioned properly to allow for the appropriate standoff distance and aimed at the appropriate height for the targeted vehicle. It also needs to be deployed in a manner that allows for precise timing, whether the device is command-detonated or victim-actuated.

EFPs used in Iraq, Lebanon and the Palestinian territories have proved to be highly effective against armored vehicles -- even main battle tanks. And they are downright deadly against lighter vehicles like armored personnel carriers, transport trucks, jeeps and Humvees -- or the armored bus shown in the Syria video.

Indicators of Foreign Support

Much can be discerned from a careful examination of the IEDs a militant organization employs in its attacks. For example, in the 1970s the rapid increase of bombmaking skill in Palestinian and other Marxist-oriented militant groups clearly displayed that those groups had received training from professional bombmakers dispatched by state sponsors. Indeed, decades before al Qaeda opened training camps in Pakistan and Afghanistan, training camps in Lebanon's Bekaa Valley, the People's Democratic Republic of Yemen, Libya and Iraq were filled with militants from all over the world, and particular bombmaking techniques that appeared in distinct areas could be traced back to individual bombmakers who attended training courses together at those locations. Later, the emergence of signature IEDs in places such as El Salvador and Colombia demonstrated that bombmakers from the Provisional Irish Republican Army (PIRA) and Basque militant group ETA had been passing along their training to a new generation of militants in those countries -- a fact later backed up by the arrests of some of the bombmakers.

In many of the early jihadist attacks against U.S. interests in places such as Yemen, specific techniques utilized by some bombmakers made it obvious to investigators that they had received training at camps in Pakistan and brought their training home with them after fighting against the Soviets in Afghanistan. Later, after receiving training from Hezbollah, al Qaeda began to display hallmarks of Hezbollah's influence in its IED designs.

The use of signature explosives, like Semtex H, by groups such as the PIRA and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command also demonstrated a distinct logistical link between state sponsors of terrorism like Libya and their militant proxies. Indeed, under the Gadhafi regime, the Libyans were even known to use the diplomatic pouch to smuggle Semtex to their embassies in places like London, where the explosives were then provided to militant proxies for use in attacks.

In more recent years, there were rapid advances in the IEDs employed by Nigerian militant group Boko Haram. When the group's IEDs progressed from small, crude devices to large suicide VBIEDs in the span of six months, it clearly indicated that the group's bombmakers had received external training.

In another recent case, underpowered suicide VBIEDs employed by al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb have demonstrated that the group's commanders in northern Algeria have a desire to attack and an abundance of suicide operatives, but are having difficulty amassing enough explosive material to create effective VBIEDs. This information allows analysts to gauge the type of threat such a group poses.

Which brings us back to EFPs. In Iraq, EFPs were most widely used by Shiite militants, who received copper liners for their improvised EFP devices from Iran's Quds Force. Indeed, the emergence of EFPs in Iraq was a strong indicator of Iran's support for the Shiite militias in Iraq.

Though Syria shares a border with Iraq, one cannot simply assume that EFP technology has spilled across the border. Certainly, the principle behind EFPs is simple enough, but the EFPs in Iraq were largely used by Shiite militants, who are aligned with Iran and, by extension, the Syrian regime. The Quds Force is unlikely to have provided copper liners for improvised EFPs to the Sunni militants in Syria or to have permitted its Iraqi proxies to transfer them. (However, it is entirely possible that an entrepreneurial-minded Shi'i who had some of the liners could have sold them to a Sunni militant, who then furnished them to Syrian militants.)

It will be important to monitor how many EFPs Syrian militants deploy. If they deploy only a few EFP devices in scattered locations, they may be obtaining liners on an ad hoc basis. However, if EFPs are deployed in a broad, systematic fashion, it will be an indication -- though certainly not conclusive evidence -- that the Syrian militants are receiving supplies from an external source. The precision and effectiveness with which any such devices are employed will also be telling of the training the militants employing them have received. A domestically developed EFP capability will have some failures and inconsistencies -- the sorts of problems frequently evidenced as a bombmaker advances along the bombmaking learning curve. Such growing pains will be absent if the Syrian militants are aided by outside training and logistics.

There are many ways that one can judge the degree of foreign support that a militant group is receiving. The indicators can include anything from uniforms and assault rifles to the presence of increasing numbers of anti-tank guided missiles and man-portable air defense systems. But more subtle indications, such as those involving IED components and bombmaking skills, should not be overlooked.

Are Syria's Rebels Getting Foreign Support? COPYRIGHT: STRATFOR.COM

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

For my fellow cops out there.

Anyone who has performed a watch before can relate.
P1 Humor Corner: 25 signs that you're a cop

When do you really know that you are a police officer? Is it when you realize that you find humor in other people’s stupidity? Or is it when you know for certain that unspeakable evils will befall you if anyone says, “Boy, it sure is quiet tonight.” Is it when you’ve left more meals on the restaurant table than you’ve eaten, or when you come to the knowledge that discussing human dismemberment over a meal is a perfectly normal thing to do? Maybe it’s when you feel good when you hear someone say, “These handcuffs are too tight.” Here are 25 ways you can be pretty reliably sure that you’re really a cop.

1.) You have the bladder capacity of five people combined.

2.) You have restrained someone and it was not a sexual experience.

3.) You believe that 50 percent of people are a waste of good air.

4.) Your idea of a good time is a “man with a gun” call.

5.) You conduct a criminal record check on anyone who seems friendly towards you.

6.) You believe in the aerial spraying of Prozac and birth control pills.

7.) You disbelieve 90 percent of what you hear and 75 percent of what you see.

8.) You have your weekends off planned for a year.

9.) You believe the government should require a permit to reproduce.

10.) You refer to your favorite restaurant by the intersection at which it’s located.

11.) You have ever wanted to hold a seminar entitled: “Suicide: Getting it right the first time.”

12.) You ever had to put the phone on hold before you begin laughing uncontrollably.

13.) You think caffeine should be available in IV form.

14.) You know anyone who says, “I only had two beers” is going to blow at least a .15

15.) You find out a lot about paranoia just by following people around.

16.) Anyone has ever said to you, “There are people killing other people out there and you are here messing with me.”

17.) People flag you down on the street and ask you directions to strange places...and you know where it’s located.

18.) You can discuss where you are going to eat with your partner while standing over a dead body.

19.) You are the only person introduced at social gatherings by profession.

20.) You walk into places and people think it’s high comedy to grab their buddy and shout, “They’ve come to get you, Bill.”

21.) You do not see daylight from November until May.

22.) People shout, “I didn’t do it!” when you walk into a room and think they’re being hugely funny and original.

23.) A week’s worth of laundry consists of five T-shirts, five pairs of socks, and five pairs of underwear.

24.) You’ve ever referred to Tuesday as “my weekend.”

25.) You’ve ever written off guns and ammunition as a business deduction.

How to handle a car thief!

Calf Roper Hog-Ties Suspected Tulsa Car Thief - NewsOn6.com - Tulsa, OK

A Tulsa man is in jail after being captured and hog-tied by his would-be victim, according to Tulsa Police.

Tulsa Police say Kalvin Hulvey, 35, was arrested Monday afternoon and booked into the Tulsa County jail on a complaint of larceny of a motor vehicle.

Jeremy Penny, of Tulsa, spotted the suspect stealing his car, followed him, and yanked him out of the car. Then he and his father hog-tied him and suspended him on a nearby fence until police arrived...

..."Saw the guy walking, but didn't pay him any mind," said Penny. "Then I looked back and I saw him taking off in my car."

Penny and his dad got in another truck and chased the driver to an intersection, where they all got caught up in traffic.

All in all awesome, but this is the part I really love.
"I was really mad when I drove up next to him and he was changing my radio station," said Penny.

The 6-foot-5-inches, 240-pound Penny then yanked Hulvey out of the car. Then he and his father hog-tied Hulvey and secured him to a fence until police arrived.

Classic! I bet you put the fear of God in him. Thank you Mr Penny for not taking it.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Media, objectivity and hypocrisy.

A few weeks ago there were over one hundred protests against the Obamacare order for Catholic hospitals to cover birth control. For some reason that wasn't given much coverage in the objective, mainstream media. Now what do I find this in my Houston Chronicle this morning.

Nuns begin protest of GOP budget plan

Charlie Neibergall / Associated Press
DES MOINES, Iowa — A group of Roman Catholic nuns began a nine-state bus tour protesting proposed federal budget cuts Monday, saying they weren’t trying to flout recent Vatican criticisms of socially active nuns but felt called to show how Republican policies are affecting low-income families.

The tour was organized by Network, a Washing-ton-based Catholic social justice group criticized in a recent Vatican report that said some organizations led by nuns have focused too much on economic injustice while failing to promote the church’s teachings on abortion and same-sex marriage. The Vatican asked U.S. bishops to look at Network’s ties to another group of nuns it is reorganizing because of what the church calls “serious doctrinal problems.”...

...While the nuns say they aren’t opposing any specific Republican candidate, they plan stops at the offices of several closely tied to the budget process, including House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio, and Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan, the architect of the House-passed budget. Their first stop Monday was Rep. Steve King’s office in Ames. The tour will end in Washington on July 2...

Thousands protest Obama nationwide for a blatantly unconstitutional infringement on the Right of Religion and for some reason AP doesn't really concern themselves. Yet a handful of nuns protest not federal budget policy but Republican budget cuts and they can send a crew to make a make up story on it. Not that they have ever done this before.

And the media wonders why their reputation is lowere than that of politicians and lawyers.

Geopolitical Weekly: The Futility of European Elections, June 19, 2012

By George Friedman

Europe and the financial markets watched intently June 17 as Greece held general elections. German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Francois Hollande and Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti all delayed their flights to the June 18 G-20 summit in Mexico to await the results.

The two leading contenders in the elections were the center-right New Democracy Party (ND), which pledged to uphold Greece's commitments to austerity and honor the country's financial agreements with the European Union and the International Monetary Fund, and the Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA), a group of far-left politicians who pledged to reject Greece's existing agreements, end austerity and maintain the country's position in the eurozone. A third major party, the center-left Panhellenic Socialist Movement (PASOK), shares the ND's position of maintaining Greece's bailout agreement. PASOK had been Greece's ruling party until it formed a unity government with the ND late in 2011.

For a while it seemed these elections would be definitive. Either Greece would reject the country's agreement with its international lenders, potentially being forced out of the eurozone, or it wouldn't. If Greece rejected austerity and forcibly or voluntarily left the eurozone, the country might set a precedent for other troubled states and precipitate a financial crisis -- a eurozone exit and default would likely go hand in hand. Europe would be tested as never before, and it would find out how resilient it is to a wider financial crisis.

But in Europe, the least likely outcome is a definitive one. ND won the election with about 29.5 percent of the vote, earning 78 seats in parliament plus another 50 seats awarded to the winning party by the Greek constitution. SYRIZA received roughly 27.1 percent of the vote, equivalent to 72 seats, and PASOK received roughly 12.2 percent of the vote, or about 33 seats. The rest of the vote was scattered among a host of other parties. A party needs 151 seats to gain an absolute majority in parliament, but since no single party passed that threshold, a governing coalition must be formed. So the ND needs PASOK if it is going to cobble together a governing coalition, but PASOK has said it will not join a coalition without SYRIZA. It is unclear what a coalition would look like between a party that wants to respect the bailout agreement and a party that wants to reject it, but such a coalition is unlikely to happen anyway. SYRIZA wants to form a powerful opposition. Something resembling a government eventually will be assembled regardless of current rhetoric.

The Greek vote has settled nothing. In fact, it may not even lead to the formation of a government; the last election failed to produce a government and forced this election. That the European crisis most severely affected a country so politically fractious could be seen as pitiable. On the other hand, one could argue that the crisis inevitably would be most severe in the most divided country -- not because the divisions caused the crisis, but because the crisis caused the divisions. 

The pressure brought on by the circumstances in Greece undermined whatever political order was in place; the choices for policymakers were so limited and so frightening that coherent responses were difficult. Greece has options, but it is unable to choose one. More than anything, Europe wants a decision on its future, whatever that decision might be. On June 17, Greece disappointed Europe not because of the choice it made but because it was crippled with indecision.

Crisis Management

Greece's indecisions are at the ground level of Europe. Another and more significant framework for indecision is emerging in Franco-German relations. The French Socialist Party won an absolute majority the same day that the Greeks entered another gridlock. This makes it possible for France's Socialists to form a government without the Greens, giving Hollande a strong and coherent platform from which to operate.

France's position on managing the sovereign debt crisis differs fundamentally from Germany's. Germany has said it will not agree to proposed solutions that would essentially turn the eurozone into a transfer union until the rest of Europe can balance their budgets through austerity measures. Germany believes this must be the first step to further EU and eurozone integration. Hollande takes a different position. He, too, wants greater European and eurozone integration. However, Hollande advocates economic stimulus alongside austerity measures as a means to rebalance the finances of European governments.

Hollande wants to grow Europe out of its financial problems. This means stimulating economies, a process that requires deficit spending. Hollande upholds a traditional Keynesian tenet that increasing demand for goods among consumers will increase economic activity and increase investment. As a Socialist with a strong leftist contingent in his party, Hollande cannot support the German position, which constrains the economy, particularly by decreasing government expenditures, thereby depressing consumption. 

The difference between the French and German approaches is substantial. It reveals a dispute at the heart of the European strategy for managing the crisis. The Germans have been aggressive in demanding balanced budgets. The French are becoming equally aggressive in demanding expansionary policies. Both want to avoid defaults, but the Germans want to guarantee payments of debt by a combination of bailout and austerity. The French want to add stimulus to this, which changes the situation entirely because the stimulus would be funded in large part by German coffers. 

This is not a simple matter of divergent economic theory. It is a matter of national interest. France is not as economically decrepit as Spain or Italy, let alone Greece, but nonetheless it is feeling the pressures of the financial crisis. If Europe continues on its path toward recession, France will face higher unemployment and therefore domestic political pressure under the German plan. It is not in Hollande's or France's interests to follow the German course. For its part, Germany cannot risk further government deficits in the European economic system. Germany's robust economy gives the country a financial cushion to soften the effects of deficit cuts; the rest of Europe, including France, does not have this luxury.

Interestingly, France and Germany were as one on this issue until Hollande was elected president. Indeed, the foundation and mission of European integration has been the close alignment of Germany and France. A founding principle of the union, such an alignment guaranteed stability and discouraged conflicts that had torn Europe apart. Now, Europe has lost its coherence at the highest level, albeit in a more orderly manner than in Greece.

Disharmony and Public Opinion

Of course, the situation is not that simple. What Germany says it wants differs from what it allows to happen. Germany claims to favor disciplined austerity, but more than any other country Germany needs the eurozone to stay intact. It is thus willing to compromise on austerity and on underwriting bad debts. On the other hand, Germany rejects the idea that a systematic strategy to stimulate growth is needed or likely to work. France sees no other solution, lest it face austerity itself. Both want different fiscal policies from the members and also, logically, from the European Central Bank.

From the most beleaguered members of the European Union to the relations between its strongest and most stable members, there is now profound disharmony. What drives this disharmony is public opinion. The Greek public is divided politically; therefore, Greece is paralyzed. France held an election in which Hollande, who holds serious doubts about German policy, forced out and replaced former French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who shared the German position on managing the crisis.

It is not the policymakers that are divided. Rather, the electorate is driving apart policymakers. The German solution to the problem is so unpalatable to the rest of Europe that traditional elite politicians supporting Germany's plan, such as Sarkozy and former Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou, are being replaced. Their replacements tend to reject the German position.

Indeed, political reality has constrained the actions of European lawmakers. Until about five years ago, a broad consensus governed Europe when it came to EU matters, and politicians were free to align themselves with Europe. This is no longer the case -- the solution for maintaining Europe has diverged. Most important, Germany has become the problem in the eurozone where once it was the solution.

Structural issues, such as German dependence on exports to the European Union, only partly explain the change in Germany's public perception. More accurately, German methods for managing the crisis increasingly are seen by other countries as significant threats to their well being -- there is not one anti-German coalition. Germany wants to find accommodation with France. The problem rests in how the French and German views are reconciled. France is not yet leading a coalition against Germany, but it is difficult to imagine a different scenario.

The more elections are held, the more the public will force their leaders in various directions. More often than not, this direction will eschew austerity and Germany. Over time this will solidify into a new map. While this has yet to happen, the recent elections at the least are not solving Europe's problem. In fact, they may be further dividing the Continent. And there are many elections to go.

The Futility of European Elections

Monday, June 18, 2012

I am big, it's the pictures that got small!

One of the greatest quotes from Hollywood applies as we get closer to November.

I'm old enough to remember the disaster of Jimmy Carter. He was a complete debacle in office (with few exceptions such as the Camp David Accords). And what is he now. A bitter old man in the sunset of his life trying to fool history that he was a complete failure. Sorry Jimmy, history may not get all the fact right, but they get the last word.

But one thing I do recall was the school of thought that the presidency was too large for one man. Some of the intellectual class wanted to have a prime minister to share the power of the executive. Well history shows it's not the office being too large, but the man being too small.

Four years ago America had a phase of national madness and elected a man who, as I've said more than once, is not qualified to run the night shift at a McDonalds. Too say the least he is not up to the task. And this column from the WSJ reminds us of how we were in 1980.

President Martyr
         The "sounds of slogging" echo through the decades.
Peter Baker of the New York Times informs us in a "news analysis" that "for Barack Obama, a president who set out to restore good relations with the world in his first term, the world does not seem to be cooperating all that much with his bid to win a second." Thanks a lot world, you ingrate!The world's perfidy notwithstanding, "polls show Mr. Obama with a double-digit advantage over [Mitt] Romney on foreign policy," Baker notes. But in a cruel twist of fate, "in the latest New York Times-CBS News poll, only 4 percent of Americans picked foreign policy as their top election concern."Fate is cruel to Obama in more ways than one: "If anything, the dire headlines from around the world only reinforce an uncomfortable reality for this president and any of his successors: even the world's last superpower has only so much control over events beyond its borders, and its own course can be dramatically affected in some cases. Whether from ripples of the European fiscal crisis or flare-ups of violence in Baghdad, it is easy to be whipsawed by events."
All indisputably true. It's also true that into every life a little rain must fall, but that's not much of a defense for a poorly performing employee whose boss is considering whether to renew his contract.
Lately we've seen a spate of articles blaming Obama's failures on impersonal forces beyond his control. Thus Chris Cillizza in the Washington Post:
We are going to go out on a limb and predict that we will see another two-term president, though perhaps not this year.
"In the same years when presidential politics changed so greatly, governing did, too," writes the Times's Tom Wicker: "It got harder. . . . The rise of single-interest politics and independent legislators has made it more difficult to put together a governing coalition; sophisticated new lobbying techniques wielded on behalf of virtually every interest group further complicate the task. And a strong argument could be made that the major issues--energy and the economy, for instance--are more complex than they were."
Hey, wait a minute. Didn't Tom Wicker die last year?
Why yes he did. That quote came from a column he wrote in April 1980, the last time a Democratic president was in the midst of an unsuccessful re-election bid. And he's not the only one whose 32-year-old plaints sound awfully familiar.
botwt0618Associated Press/CorbisJimmy Carter was known for his bright smile.
"The Presidency today is entangled in the great crisis of all established authority," wrote Henry Graff, a Columbia University historian (now emeritus) in the Times July 25, 1980. "Executives of every kind--political, educational, ecclesiastical, corporate--are under incessant public attack." Those damn blogs! The president's life, Graff wrote, "is under such relentless scrutiny that he can only seem ordinary, never extraordinary. No man is a hero to his valet, and America is now a nation of valets."
Graff did not mention Twitter, blogs, Facebook and so on and so forth.
"Watching President Carter try to juggle all the contradictory foreign and domestic problems of the nation during a presidential election and an economic recession, you have to wonder who can do it and who can govern America," wrote James Reston, another Times columnist, in June 1980.
Reston, who died in 1995, concluded: "Carter's campaign theme is clear. It is that while the economic figures are not on his side, the economic 'trends' are changing for the better, and that, as he hopes to demonstrate in his meetings with world figures, he knows more about foreign policy than [Ted] Kennedy, Reagan or [John] Anderson."
Then again, it's easy to be whipsawed by events.
"The presidency has grown, and grown and grown, into the most powerful, most impossible job in the world," declared the subheadline of a Jan. 13, 1980, Washington Post story, whose author, Walter Shapiro, has since ascended to Yahoo! News.
Titled "Voters Expect to Elect a Mere Mortal," the Shapiro story (quoted by the Media Research Center) observed: Voters have lowered their expectations of what any president can accomplish; they have accepted the notion that this country may never again have heroic, larger-than-life leadership in the White House. . . . Some voters have entirely discarded textbook notions about presidential greatness and believe that Carter is doing as good a job as anyone could in facing new and difficult problems and in coping with an independent and restive Congress."
In August 1980 (in a story not available online), Post reporter Robert G. Kaiser, now an editor, described the speech in which Carter accepted the Democratic nomination:
Listen closely and you can hear the sounds of slogging echo across the decades. They emanate not just from the failed president but from sympathetic journalists trying to absolve him of the responsibility for his failure.
We learned in the 1980s that the presidency was still big. It was Jimmy Carter who turned out to be small.

Lost in the chatter about whether President Obama will win a second term in November is an even bigger--and perhaps even more important--question: Is it possible for a president--any president--to succeed in the modern world of politics?
Consider this: We are in the midst of more than a decade-long streak of pessimism about the state of the country, partisanship is at all-time highs and the media have splintered--Twitter, blogs, Facebook and so on and so forth--in a thousand directions all at once. . . .
"Due to the evolution of our politics and media, we may never see a two-term president again," said Mark McKinnon, a senior strategist for President George W. Bush's 2000 and 2004 campaigns.
President Carter in 1980 had to try to explain why he had not become the sort of leader Jimmy Carter promised to be in 1976. . . .
Not surprisingly, this 1980 Carter sounded much more defensive. Carter's 1976 acceptance speech contained no negative references to . . . Gerald R. Ford. it was entirely a positive statement.
About a fourth of last night's speech was devoted to lambasting the Republicans and Ronald Reagan. If the Grand Old Party should win in November, Carter said, "I see despair . . . I see surrender . . . I see risk." He also sees repudiation, of course, which explains his defensiveness. . . .
Carter's acceptance speech in 1976 was a magical moment, perhaps the high point of his political career. Carter spoke quietly that night in the lilting cadence of a Baptist preacher with a sure sense of himself and his message. . . .
There was no magic in Thursday night's speech. Instead, a weary convention heard the sounds of slogging from a worried politician who knows he is in deep trouble.
Again, history repeats itself. It is to be determined if Romney can be a successful president, but there is no question he is more qualified than the current occupant.

And Barrack. Again, history will have its word.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

A Good Samaritan helping out a fellow citizen!

You heard of notes on gas pumps reminding you who is responsible for 4-5 dollar a gallon gas. Here is some more help. From Daily Pundit:

Thanks to Darren at RotLC for the link.

Officer Down

Deputy Sheriff Robert "Bobby" Crapse, Sr.
Bryan County Georgia Sheriff's Office
End of Watch: Friday, June 15, 2012

Deputy Sheriff Bobby Crapse was killed when his patrol vehicle was struck head-on by a wrong way driver on I-95, near mile mark 97 in Chatham County, at approximately 2:15 am.

He had just completed a traffic control assignment and was driving back to the north part of Bryan County when the crash occurred. Deputy Crapse's canine partner sustained very minor injuries in the crash.

Deputy Crapse is survived by his wife and three children.
Rest in Peace Bro…We’ll Continue The Watch

Day is done, Gone the sun, From the lake, From the hills, From the sky. All is well, Safely rest, God is nigh.

Again, couldn't have happened to a nicer guy.

The attention on the Wikileaks scandal has recently been on the little traitor Bradley Manning.  Well some more news from the founder of Wikileaks.

Supreme court dismisses Assange appeal bid

The Supreme Court has dismissed a bid by WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange to reopen his appeal against extradition to Sweden over alleged sex crimes.

Seven judges of Britain's top court unanimously dismissed the move by Mr Assange as being "without merit".

Two weeks ago the court rejected his argument that a European arrest warrant for extradition was invalid.

His lawyers had argued that the decision was based on a legal point that had not been argued in court.

Swedish prosecutors want to question Mr Assange over allegations of rape and sexual assault made by two female former Wikileaks volunteers in mid-2010 but have not filed any charges...

...The court has given Assange a two-week grace period before extradition proceedings can start.

Once the fortnight is over, officials have 10 days to fly Mr Assange to Sweden.

The BBC's legal correspondent Clive Coleman says this is "pretty much the last attempt" by Mr Assange to legally fight extradition.

The anti-secrecy campaigner could still take his case to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) in Strasbourg and has until 28 June to make the move.

Our correspondent says there is the possibility of an appeal to the ECHR but legal experts say that it is "unlikely to block" Mr Assange's extradition.

Fair Trials International chief executive Jago Russell said: "Today's decision takes Julian Assange one step closer to being extradited to Sweden.

"Although Sweden is rightly proud of its justice system, its over-use of pre-trial detention means that, if extradited, he is likely to be imprisoned and placed under extremely restrictive conditions."

Now from what I read Sweden's sex harassment and sex assault laws can be rather vague so he may have just simply not gotten explicit permission at every step of the sexual process or something like that. My heart bleeds. Hope you're treated like a conservative in the US media there Julie (may I call you Julie). And I hope there are some guys in the jail who really take a liking to you!

On this Father's Day, let's talk about urinating!

As as I have morning coffee on Father's Day I see this article at Hotair and recall what Reagan said was his biggest mistake as Governor of California. He signed off on full time state legislators. You give busy bodies too much time on their hands and power there will be problems. See the current Congress, legislatures of California, New York, Michigan. Thankfully the Texas legislature meets every two years for 140 days. And we know it would be better if they met every 140 years for two days.

A classic example of why legislatures and politicians need to be controlled and changed regularly.

Stop stand-up urination for men, Swedish politicians urge

Some Swedish politicians say that standing up to empty one's bladder is unsanitary and less healthy for a man than sitting down. A Swedish political party is taking a stand against upright urination.

At a county council meeting Monday, the Left Party, or Vänsterpartiet, tabled a motion that would require office washrooms to be genderless with a sit-down-only requirement, reported the news agency Tidningarnas Telegrambyrå.

For men who might refuse to comply, party representatives suggested a separate set of toilets clearly labeled for stand-up urination only.

Vänsterpartiet, known as a socialist and feminist organization, believes seated urination is healthier for men and more hygienic for both sexes.

Party speakers cited medical research they said shows men empty their bladders more efficiently while seated. Improved bladder evacuation reduces the risk for prostate problems, according to the party. It also helps men who sit rather than stand achieve a longer and healthier sex life, it said.

Viggo Hansen, a substitute council member who authored the motion, told Sveriges Television that that the move does not represent an attempt to meddle in the bathroom habits of citizens.
"That's not what we're doing. We want to give men the option of going into a clean toilet," he said.
Pal, grow a pair and tell the shemales and other idiots in your party to go pound sand. If this is what you need to spend your time on you need to get a job.

Ain't you glad you don't live in the socalist paradise of Sweden.


Saturday, June 16, 2012

Progress on the test front, progress on the education front and True Grit

As you know my blogging has been down because I've been studying for a promotion exam which has consumed everything. In addition to my time in the library I've been taking a prep course and took the final comprehensive prep test today. I scored a 76, which is ten points higher than the class average. Last week I scored six points higher. Now this man's course is know to be tougher than the test so I'm starting to get a warm and fuzzy.

Also the test is now just nine and a wake up away. And I am so ready for it to be over. I miss actually working for a living!

Also got word from the VA my GI Bill has been approved so I can start work on my masters degree sometime this fall. Onward!

Finally Beth and I sat and watched a movie we've had from Netflix since January 17. The remake of True Grit. I will say it was a great film. Wayne's original is still the best but Bridges kicked ass in this. I'll finally mail it back on Monday.

After checking a few things for the test, I kinda took it easy today after the prep test. I needed a break. It starts again for real early tomorrow. Nine and a wakeup. At least I can see daylight at the end of the tunnel.

Once more unto the breach dear friends!

Something the Houston Chronicle really expects us to believe.....

It's such a blessing to see you Dear Leader, 
thank you for taking time out of your day! 
Oh, gracious God, thank you so much!"

Not that the Houston Chronicle is a leftist propaganda rag that has pushed the Obama regieme more and more, but this is beyond the pale.  This is the cover picture of this morning's edition. The caption reads:
Thailandia Alaffita, front left, views the president's address Friday in a crowd at Houston's Baker-Ripley Neighborhood Center. 
Now you can read the article here and there is no question of the does the president have the power to do this by executive fiat, the wisdom of back door immigration,  etc.  But look at that first picture.  Does that look as staged as the day is long?  Sorry, but these people have TVs.  Why are they all just walking down to a big room to be seen watching an address from the Dear Leader?  Could it be just a bunch of propaganda put out by the Chronicle to support the moron they will, I have no doubt, support again this fall.  But the last two paragraphs inadvertently states the purpose of this:

..."We're excited, but we know at the same time it is just a first step," said Claudia Muñoz, a 25-year-old undocumented immigrant from Mexico who graduated from Prairie View University in 2009.

Muñoz, a community organizer in Houston, said because the policy is essentially an administrative order, she is afraid "it could be taken away" if Obama loses to Romney, who has voiced opposition to the DREAM Act. She predicted that likely will motivate supporters of the change to head to the polls to vote for Obama in November.

"The timing is just so perfect," she said.

Couldn't have said it better Claudia.  Hopefully we are seeing the last nail in the coffin of the Obama regime.  Remember in 2007 when George W Bush tried amnesty the legit way, through Congress.  The Republicans members of the House and Senate were almost pulled out of their cars by people outraged by this.  Yes Claudia, this will motivate people.  Your man-child's days are dwindling, Oh gracious God, thank you!