Monthly Archives: April 2013

Boy suspended for having pocket knife on camping trip

Braden suspended for swiss army knife on camping tripGarden Gate Elementary School in Cupertino, CA suspended and almost expelled a 10 year-old boy because he brought a Swiss Army knife on a camping trip.

Braden Bandermann was suspended for bringing a Swiss Army knife on a camping trip. Other students on the trip apparently reported Braden to teachers once they saw that Braden had the tool.

The Swiss Amry knife, and all pocket knives, are more tools than weapons. Anyone that has ever been a boy scout, cub scout, a hiker or camper understands the value of a simple knife. A Swiss Army knife has a myriad of tools valuable to a camper, hiker or anyone stuck in a situation for which they were otherwise unprepared.

Braden suspended for swiss army knife on camping trip

The panic comes from school administrators who believe that it is possible to create a antiseptic, danger-free Utopian environment. It is not.

Teaching our children to be self-sufficient and able to defend themselves is apparently not the job of the public school system.

Here, on a camping trip, a boy is nearly turned out from the California public school system for carrying a tool. Perhaps it’s the best thing that could have happened to him.

The state of California seems beside itself in efforts to strip the population of the ability to take of themselves. Now, they are actually attacking children who make an attempt at self-sufficiency.

Braden’s dad said, “I felt as though I want to pull him out of the public education system and homeschool him,” he said. “I felt as though the public education system is becoming the bottom of the barrel. I felt sorry for today’s kids.”

Marco Rubio and the Magic Beans

Immigration-CautionShortly after last year’s presidential defeat and at the beginning of the Great Republican Panic of 2013, I wrote here about what a bad idea morally and legally amnesty for illegal aliens is. Guess what? It still is.

In a sane universe “immigration reform” would be specifically designed to benefit the citizens of the nation passing the law, rather than be a law that only benefits non–citizens who came here illegally at the expense of the citizens.

But that hasn’t stopped Sen. Marco Rubio (R–FL) from eagerly joining the Gang of Ocho’s efforts to pass a “comprehensive” amnesty bill. After being trapped in a room with both Sen. Chuck Schumer (D–Publicity) and Sen. John McCain (R–Media Loves Me, Unless I Run for President), Rubio has evidently developed Stockholm Syndrome. He claims this amnesty bill does not have any amnesty provisions. Instead is has a “path to citizenship” where the length of time before amnesty kicks in somehow makes amnesty more tolerable for conservatives.

Yet I have a simple test for supporters of any immigration reform bill. If removing the portions that deal with granting citizenship to people who came to the US illegally causes Democrat support to vanish, then what you have is an amnesty bill and not a “reform” at all.

During her testimony before Congress in support of the bill, Sec. of Homeland Security Janet Incompetano said the 844–page bill has many benefits, including stricter accountability for employers and improving border security. Yet you can accomplish both of those goals without legalizing 12 million illegal aliens and doing so might just reduce the number of illegals here now.

Opponents of actually enforcing immigration law claim the government can’t deport 12 million people, but no one I know is advocating that. In fact this is one of the areas where I prefer a libertarian solution: the illegals got here on their own without government assistance and they can leave on their own, too.

In a true magic beans moment, Rubio is so proud of the 13–year “path to citizenship” — as if a slow motion surrender to illegality is an improvement over an immediate surrender. Maybe he thinks during this cooling off period Republican outreach teams can contact the newly legal and persuade them they are really naturally conservative and should be voting GOP.

But I’ve got news for Marco: it’s not going to happen. His 13–year path is going to be the civil unions of the immigration fight. As soon as Rubio’s bill is passed Democrats will begin complaining about second–class citizenship for brown people. As Neil Munro has written, the bill already has 400 “exemptions, exceptions, waivers, determinations and grants of discretion and even better will be administered by the OBAMA ADMINISTRATION!

We will be lucky if the 13–years lasts 13 months.

Democrats will get their immediate temporary permanent status for the illegals and the increased border security will never happen. The same goes for employer sanctions.

We heard the amnesty and border security shuffle when Reagan granted amnesty to 3 million (Gee, wasn’t he a Republican?). Amnesty was immediate and border security was absent, which is why we are preparing to legalize 12 million now.

The fines Rubio dreams of (much like the $1,500 fines the Commonwealth of Virginia was going to impose of indigent drunk drivers) will never be collected and the English proficiency test will be found to be culturally insensitive. Instead, illegals will get a waiver for the fine and if they can look at two photos and distinguish George Washington from Simon Bolivar their English is good to go, too.

You think I’m exaggerating? Ha! The Democrats in charge of the District of Columbia are preparing to introduce legislation that would require pharmacies, and possibly doctor’s offices, to provide translators — at business expense — for any customer or patient who does not speak English. That in a nutshell (apt phrasing, that) is the Democrat philosophy on immigration.

And by the way, I was being conservative when I said 12 million illegals would join us. According to NumbersUSA it will be more like 33 million, because “comprehensive reform” doesn’t manage to reform one of the major failings of current immigration policy called “family reunification.”

You probably think unifying families makes sense, because parents should be able to bring their children into the country. But you are wrong, that policy would be the reform. Current Democrat policy defines “family” as grandfathers, grandmothers, uncles, aunts, cousins, kissing–cousins, step–relatives and BFFs. So 33 million may be a conservative estimate.

Tea Party favorite Rubio is flacking for a bill that will only encourage more illegal immigration in the future, will not provide increased border security, will cost taxpayers billions, will depress wages for lower income workers, will burden the welfare system and — according to a report from Emily Schultheis in Politico — give Democrats 11 million so new voters, which is about the voting population of Ohio.

This leaves conservatives with a choice of opinions regarding Marco Rubio. One, he’s either too gullible to ever be allowed in the Oval Office or two, he’s a Democrat sleeper agent.

Highlights of the St. Paul Taxpayer Rally

Taxpayer Rally 2013 Highlights from Jeremy Griffith on Vimeo.

Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann

Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann

Michele Bachmann, Jason Lewis and Grover Norquist headlined Saturday’s Taxpayer Rally on the Mall of the State Capitol in Minnesota. Here are some of the highlights of that event. Complete video of Bachmann and Lewis’s comments can be found at my blog at AmericanMillenniumOnline.com here. 

At What Cost America?

I will never forget my father’s provocative words, spoken to me while watching the news shortly after the horrific attacks of September 11, 2001. Father said, “Mark, they won.” Not knowing exactly what my father meant, I said, “what do you mean dad”? He simply replied, “the terrorists won.” In my anger, and disbelief, over what took place on 911, I replied to my father, “they [the terrorists] didn’t win a dam thing”! We are going to kick their freaking ****s! Besides the pain and grief of seeing those events unfold, over and over on T.V., and mourning the loss of nearly 3000 fellow citizens, my only concern was that we send our military over to Afghanistan, and used such an overwhelming amount of force that, these thugs would think twice before ever considering doing such a thing again. But, without re-litigating the pros and cons of our military response, and the subsequent military decisions, my father’s words still remain with me to this day:

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Politically Sound Doctrine

Leadership and management theory can be narrowed down to three interrelated concepts; Authority, Responsibility, and Accountability.

Yes, there are dozens of books on the market about various approaches to leadership and management.  Some folks have made a very good living theorizing how to be a better leader, or, a better manager, or being a superb both.  No criticism here about those principles and ideas.  To some extent they all work in some scenarios.  But this article is about Authority, Responsibility, and Accountability mentioned above.

Not only is it about authority, responsibility and accountability but it is also about how they interact in the political realm.  Let’s take them briefly one at a time.

Authority is the right to act within one’s own judgment.  In most cases authority is delegated from someone with superior authority.  Delegation simply stated means that an individual is given the freedom to act by their own volition on behalf of that superior authority.

Responsibility is the act of accepting authority to perform an assignment given.  A substantive difference between authority and responsibility is in the ownership.  Authority is solely own by an individual.  Responsibility is co-owned between one delegating authority and the one to whom authority is being delegated.

Accountability is the act of exacting an explanation of how one has used their authority and fulfilled their responsibility.  Again accountability is a joint duty of both parties.

Delegation, assignment, exaction.  Authority is delegated.  Responsibility is assigned.  Accountability is exacted.

Political Authority

In America authority was delegated to the federal government by the superior authority, the people.

“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union…, secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

The people then defined within that Constitution the various roles (authority) of the articulated branches of the federal government.  Neither the federal, state, nor local government may rightfully take upon themselves authority which was not delegated to them by the people.  The government did not establish the US Constitution.  Was it written by men of sound and prudent minds?  Of course it was.  Was it approved by various legislatures?  Again, of course it was.  Yet, it was the people’s delegation of authority, not government’s assertion thereof.

Neither the federal, state, nor local government have the authority beyond that which was delegated to them by the people.  Those governments have no additional authority than that which is delegated as documented in the Constitution.  Throughout the history of this great nation many holding the authority of the government have attempted, intentionally or otherwise, to exert their personal whims to demand more authority than they rightfully possessed.  In the very act of doing so, regardless of their intentions or wisdom, they violated their right of their delegated authority.

Far too frequently those who pretend to adhere to the Constitution appeal to the words of the “founders”.  I take nothing from such men of wisdom as John Adams and James Madison.  Their words, counsel and genius were in fact inspired.  However, the Constitution was not their possession.  It belonged to the people.  Those men had to engage as diligently in informing the people of the Constitution as did those men who put the words of it to paper.

Ultimately the people delegated certain authority to a government which they intended for those given authority to be forever diligent in maintaining that sacred trust.

Political Responsibility

The Constitution in its initial framework and the Bill of Rights, which was subsequently added within a few years, conveyed the responsibilities which govern held, under that document.  In short the government had summarized responsibilities.  First and foremost was that all people and the various states were to be governed by equitable laws.  Equitable laws simply mean no person or state is treated preferentially based upon merit of position, but rather on the merit of maintaining equitable treatment under the law.

“A more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity…”

The responsibility assigned to the federal government, by its superior authority-the people, was articulated in the Bill of Rights in keeping the promise of Constitutional Convention.  The government had a responsibility to restrict itself from infringement upon the rights of the people and the states.

When Congress, on March 4, 1789, conveyed the Bill of Rights for consideration by the various states under Article 5 of the Constitution the content of that conveyance, seldom discussed, bears significantly upon the responsibility of the federal government.

“THE Conventions of a number of the States, having at the time of their adopting the Constitution, expressed a desire, in order to prevent misconstruction or abuse of its powers, that further declaratory and restrictive clauses should be added: And as extending the ground of public confidence in the Government, will best ensure the beneficent ends of its institution.”

Note the particularity with which Congress, many members of whom participated in the writing of the adopted Constitution of the people, emphasized the intent of the Bill of Rights, “in order to prevent misconstruction or abuse of its powers”.

The assignment given to Congress was a responsibility to restrict the invasiveness of the government.  In those early days the federal government comprehended that assignment, and acted within their limited authority and breadth of responsibility to comply.

Political Accountability

The people, the founders of this nation and its Constitution, were foremost concerned with limiting the degree of liberty they would sacrifice to a government.  Said the participants in the Constitutional Convention that prepared and presented the “Conscience of the Country” to the people for ratification, the following:

“that it is liable to as few exceptions as could reasonably have been expected, we hope and believe; that it may promote the lasting welfare of that Country so dear to us all, and secure her freedom and happiness, is our most ardent wish” (emphasis added).

In essence the people said to the federal government, ‘we have delegated to you authority, we have assigned to you a responsibility, now we come to exact an accountability.  What have you done with that authority and Responsibility which we have given and shared with you?”

Summary

In the beginning Congress saw their duty clearly, and with the leadership of men such as John Adams (whom some contend that he did not fully embrace the Bill of Rights) championed, jointly with the people, the responsibility which they had been assigned.

It comes as no surprise to anyone that this author concludes that the bulk of the men and women of authority in the government today fall far short of leadership and proper management of the government.

It is nearly as though each delegatee in the federal government seeks first to exceed the authority granted by the people.  They act as though they are an authority unto themselves, rather than trustees of the superior authority of the people.

The responsibilities of the government are clear.  Historically and logically, to a just arbiter of fact, current members of the articulated branches of the federal government routinely exceed their responsibilities.  They are failing to provide the equity of law which they were mandated to provide.  A preponderance of laws focus upon the nature of redistribution of justice to classes of people rather the application to the whole.  They correspondingly excel their clear boundaries with abridgements, infringements, and disregard for the specifics of the Bill of Rights.  They are failing to meet their designated responsibilities, while exceeding their authority exponentially.

What is left then, is the accountability.

It may seem like a moment of great despair to those that are conscious of the neglect of duty by federal officials.  All too often people cry out in dismay, “I just want to hear SOMETHING good about the government.”  Vast arrays of similar insults are hurled toward federal officials.  Others like, Mike Vanderboegh, advocate open disobedience to laws that fall outside the authority and responsibility of Constitution.

In Mormon (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) theology they have a scriptural reference which could be applied, in principle, to what we see in government today.  (Below is a paraphrase, and in no manner represents the views or position of the LDS Church.  It is this author’s interpretation for the sole purpose of conveying a political viewpoint).

“Behold, there are many called, but few are chosen. And why are they not chosen?

Because their hearts are set so much upon the things of this world, and aspire to the honors of men, that they do not learn this one lesson—

That the rights of the government are inseparably connected with the powers of people, and that the powers of people cannot be controlled nor handled only upon the principles of delegated authority.

That they may be conferred upon elected and appointed officials, it is true; but when those officials undertake to cover their wrongs and flaws, or to gratify their pride, their vain ambition, or to exercise control or dominion or compulsion upon the souls of men, the strength and support of the people is lost; and when it is lost, the authority of that man is lost as well.

Behold, ere he is aware, he is left unto himself, to kick against the authority over him, to persecute the people, and to fight against them.

We have learned by sad experience that it is the nature and disposition of almost all men, as soon as they get a little authority, as they suppose, they will immediately begin to exercise unjust dominion.”

There is a great need for two actions to occur.  First, public officials must return to the soundness of the Constitution.  It is within their authority to propose amendments to the Constitution, if they so desire.  They have authority to act for themselves in wisdom and a statesman like manner, within the confines of the Constitution.  That authority grants them the full right to propose changes to that Constitution.

However and this is most significant, until the superior authority of the people has delegated additional authority to those officials they do not have such authority.  They cannot assume unto themselves authority which they do not rightfully hold, without the consequence of full accountability.

The second great action that needs to occur is recognition among the people that they share responsibility for leadership and management with their elected and appointed officials.  The people ought not to be idle in that duty.  Their authority is perpetual and superior.  However, their responsibility is likewise perpetual.  It does not end in the voting booth.  It is not suspended during each intervening two, four, or six years.

If we go back before the Constitution to July 4th, 1776 the people of this nation operated under the premise that

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed”.

Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness are perpetual rights.  They cannot be denied.  Yet, they can be neglected by a people unwilling to express their consent.  Ignorance of infringement upon those rights is not consent to infringement; it is ignorance of duty by the superior authority of the people.  It is often said that silence is consent.  That is a fallacy!  Silence is ignorance.

When a government becomes egregious to the authority, rights, and equity under law to the people from whom they have derived their powers than the people MUST (not “may”, not “should”, not “if convenient”, not “if desirable”, etc.) assert their proper role as superior authority to the government.

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to demand accountability from their government they must lay their lives, their liberties, and their pursuit of happiness upon the line that shall not be crossed…or surely the day shall come when all three are lost, not by will but by dominion.

“With a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence,” the time has come for that “we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor” to restore a “Government of the people, by the people, for the people”.

Saturday Night Cigar Lounge with Taylor – April 27th 2013

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When: Saturday, April 27th, 10pm Eastern/7pm Pacific

Where: Saturday Night Cigar Lounge with Taylor on Blog Talk Radio

What: Saturday nights were meant for cigars and politics.

Hear Taylor and his co-host Liz Harrison talk about everything from the past week – from politics, to news, to books, and entertainment. Whatever comes to mind, and of course, sobriety is not likely.

Tonight: Tonight, Taylor’s talking on the Boston Marathon suspected bombers, and their lovely (wacky) family. More analysis, of foreign connections, repercussions of Mirandizing the suspect, and whether or not the FBI dropped the ball.

Obama Intentionally Hurting the Nation

The President is intentionally hurting the nation and the people he’s entrusted to serve. In the name of the sequester, the White House’s own plan to clinch a budget deal last year, Obama is willfully and intentionally doing as much damage as possible.

The President rejected a proposal by the Senate Republicans to give the President more flexibility to pick and choose which programs should be cut to reach the $85 billion spending reduction over seven months mandated by the so-called sequester. That would have given him the opportunity to meet the requirements of the budget deal, without affecting the people our government is supposed to be serving. Keep in mind, that these legislatively mandated reductions are not cuts in actual spending, but only reflect a 2.5% reduction in the growth of government spending.

kingAccording to the President a few weeks ago, “There’s no smart way to do that [the sequester cuts],” he said. “These cuts are wrong. They’re not smart, they’re not fair. They’re a self-inflicted wound that doesn’t have to happen.” This is a surprising admission that his own plan is, in fact, stupid!

Actually, Mr. President, there was a smart and prudent way to do it. The third annual installment of a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report spelled out a reasonable way to meet the spending-growth reduction. According to Sen. Tom Coburn, “These are among the findings in the new GAO report that found 162 areas where services are duplicated or money is being wasted in the federal government. The annual cost of duplicative or wasteful programs is estimated at roughly $250 billion. That’s 250 billion dollars a year,” Coburn said. “Just in waste, in duplication, in stupidity, and lack of efficiency and effectiveness by the federal government. (It) makes you want to pull your hair out.”

By simply incorporating the GAO recommendations, cost savings amounting to three times the $85 billion reductions specified in the sequester deal could have been realized! And there would be no impact on travelers, no impact on meat inspections, no furloughed TSA agents or Department of Energy employees, and no impact on our military’s ability to protect the nation.

But Obama rejected congressionally authorized flexibility in applying the reductions, and he opted instead to make the sequester as painful as possible. The Washington Times reports of emails to department heads that the administration intended to make good on its warnings of the “painful” sequestration cuts. According to the Times, the emails directed agency heads, “not to do anything that would lessen the dire impacts Congress had been warned of.”

It’s clear that Obama intends to make the cuts painful to average Americans while he and his family continue their lives of royalty, which we bankroll to the tune of $1.4 billion per year. In the seven weeks since he announced the White House tours would be cancelled, he’s had ten trips, and two all-star concerts in the White House. The only thing being cut at the White House is White House tours. Don’t hold your breath watching for the Obama’s to curtail their extravagant travel and vacation plans! And further proving that it’s all political, and that the President still does have discretion, Obamacare employees are not being furloughed, or facing reduced pay or work hours.

For air travelers it’s a different story, as they began this past week to feel the pain of the President’s decision as the Federal Aviation Administration has furloughed 1,500, or 10% of the nation’s 15,000 air traffic controllers. This has created delays of hundreds of flights.

Sen. Rand Paul said this week, “I think that it’s inexcusable to take important things like travel, air traffic controllers or meat inspectors or something that most of us agree we should have, and play a game with it,” the senator said. “The same day that [President Obama] announces that we have no self-guided tours in the White House, he sends $250 million to Egypt. We’ve got money. It’s a matter of priorities, and a good leader wouldn’t cut essential services. So I think it’s a bit of a charade and it ought to stop.”

Clearly the White House places politics ahead of the needs and interests of the American people. It would appear that either he thinks the blame should be ascribed to members of Congress who would not agree to the budget deal last year without some spending cuts, or he is intentionally curbing high profile, required services to show that we can’t cut a dime from actual spending. Most likely, it is for both of those reasons, which places his political agenda ahead of our interests.

The President rejected flexibility in applying the spending cuts, ignored the GAO report of where reductions could be made without adversely affecting services, and his agency heads are being instructed to make the cuts “as painful as possible.” This is not leadership; it’s ignominious politics, Chicago-style!

AP award winning columnist Richard Larsen is President of Larsen Financial, a brokerage and financial planning firm in Pocatello, Idaho, and is a graduate of Idaho State University with degrees in Political Science and History and former member of the Idaho State Journal Editorial Board.  He can be reached at [email protected].

Defense Issues Weekly – week of April 26th, 2013

North Korea can strike the US

A recent article by the investigative journalist Eli Lake proves beyond all doubt that North Korea does have an ICBM capable of reaching the United States, as well as the technology to miniaturize warheads and put them on such missiles.

It has been, and still is, an article of faith among arms-controllers and advocates of defense cuts in the West that North Korea does not know how to miniaturize warheads and mate them to ballistic missiles and that it doesn’t have an ICBM. They have been persistently making such claims even though the North already has two different ICBM types capable of reaching the US and has delivered satellites into the Earth’s orbit twice: in 1998 and last December.

It is that second satellite launch that has tipped North Korea’s capabilities off. The US and South Korean navies retrieved parts of the missile that carried out that launch, including the frontal section, where the bus for the payload would reside. It confirmed that North Korea has mastered the technology of miniaturizing warheads and mating them to missiles. It follows the simple logic that if North Korea can deliver satellites to the orbit, it can also deliver nuclear warheads, since the technology to deliver both is the same.

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South Korean Navy sailors stand guard in December near a part of debris believed to be a fuel container from a rocket launched by North Korea. (Shin Young-gun/AP); republished in http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/04/15/exclusive-u-s-recovered-north-korean-rocket-head.html

Lake himself writes:

“When North Korean engineers launched a satellite into space December 12, it seemed like business as usual, with the familiar cycle of condemnations from the West and statements of defiance from the Hermit Kingdom. But that launch also led many U.S. intelligence analysts to assess that Pyongyang possessed the ability to miniaturize the components necessary to yield a nuclear explosion for a crude warhead that would sit atop a ballistic missile.

After the North Korean launch, U.S. Navy ships managed to recover the front section of the rocket used in it, according to three U.S. officials who work closely on North Korean proliferation. That part of the rocket in turn provided useful clues about North Korean warhead design, should the next payload be a warhead rather than a satellite.

The same basic engineering and science needed to launch a satellite into space is also used in the multistage rockets known as intercontinental ballistic missiles. The front of the satellite rocket, according to three U.S. officials who work closely on North Korean proliferation, gave tangible proof that North Korea was building the missile’s cone at dimensions for a nuclear warhead, durable enough to be placed on a long-range missile that could reenter the earth’s atmosphere from space.

“Having access to the missile front was a critical insight we had not had before,” one U.S. nonproliferation official tells The Daily Beast. “I have seen a lot of drawings, but we had not seen the piece of that missile at that time.” This official continues: “We looked at the wreckage from the launc,h and we put it together with other kinds of intelligence and came to this judgment that they had figured out the warhead piece.””

The discovery thus utterly disproves the claims of arms controllers and defense cuts advocates that North Korea can’t miniaturize warheads or mate them to missiles and that additional missile defenses are unnecessary.

No flexibility on missile defense, Rogers says

State Secretary John Kerry recently offered China and Russia a downgrading of US missile defenses in Asia in exchange for unspecified cooperation on bringing North Korea to order.

His offer, however, has been rebuked by House Strategic Forces Subcommittee Chairman Mike Rogers (R-AL), who has warned that the House will not authorize any such measures – or any cuts in America’s nuclear deterrent that are not done by treaty or an Act of Congress itself.

Washington Free Beacon senior editor Bill Gertz wrote on Friday:

“Rep. Mike Rogers (R., Ala.), chairman of the House Armed Services strategic forces subcommittee, stated in a letter sent Tuesday to Kerry that he is concerned about the offer disclosed in statements this week by Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.

“Unfortunately, for the second time in as many weeks, Secretary Kerry has alluded to making deals with foreign countries regarding our missile defense,” Rogers said in a statement. “I suggest he consult with Congress about deals it won’t possibly support prior to offering concessions with countries that are not friends of ours.”

“He has forgotten pretty quickly since leaving Congress that it controls the purse strings,” the lawmaker said.

Lavrov told reporters in Moscow after a meeting of the NATO-Russia Council that U.S. officials recently supplied “suggestions” for talks on missile defense and revealed plans for adding missile interceptors in Alaska and California and bolstered defenses in Asia.”

Rogers also decried the $500 mn cut in missile defense spending that the administration has proposed in its FY2014 budget submission.

Rogers, however, has not promised to oppose cuts made by Congress itself, or by treaty, even if such Congressional statutes and treaties do cut the nuclear deterrent and US missile defense systems down to inadequate levels.

The House and Senate committee reports of the annual defense authorization bill are due in June.

No more “no-first-strike pledge”

The most recent defense white paper issued by the Chinese government omits any mention of its old no-first-strike pledge.

Hisorically, China has pledged never to be the first to use nuclear weapons, and not to use them against non-nuclear states. However, this pledge now seems to be dead, as China has removed any mention of it from its latest defense white paper.

This follows an earlier statement by a hawkish, anti-American PLA general who has said that China’s no-first-strike pledge does not apply to the US, and statements by Chinese officials that China could use nuclear weapons – even preemptively – if the US defended Taiwan against a Chinese invasion.

The omission occurs in the context of China’s secret nuclear buildup, which has brought the Chinese nuclear arsenal up to a level of 1,800 to 3,000 warheads, depending on the source (retired Russian missile force general Viktor Yesin for the former and former DOD nuclear strategist Philip Karber for the latter figure). While the US intel community and Western arms control advocates still stubbornly claim that China has only 240-300 warheads, Yesin, Karber, and other analysts point out that China has already enough fissile material for 3,600 warheads, enough industrial capacity to produce such large amounts, and a network of 3,000 miles of tunnels for ballistic missiles (called “the Great Underground Wall”) which can only hide a large nuclear arsenal as 3,000 miles of tunnels would be way too much for a small arsenal.

During the Cold War, the US intel community underestimated the Soviet Union’s nuclear arsenal by 20,000 warheads.

Being secretive about military affairs is explicitly advised by Sun Tzu in his famous military treatise, The Art of War, which generations of Chinese military officers have studied and on which China’s current military buildup is based:

“All warfare is based on deception. Hence, when able to attack, we must seem unable; when using our forces, we must seem inactive; when we are near, we must make the enemy believe we are far away; when far away, we must make him believe we are near. (…) Pretend to be weak, that he may grow arrogant.” – ch. I, verses 17-18 and 21;
“Let your plans be dark and impenetrable as night, and when you move, fall like a thunderbolt.” – ch. VII, v. 19;

“Hence that general is skillful in attack whose opponent does not know what to defend; and he is skillful in defense whose opponent does not know what to attack.
O divine art of subtlety and secrecy! Through you we learn to be invisible, through you inaudible; and hence we can hold the enemy’s fate in our hands. (…) By discovering the enemy’s dispositions and remaining invisible ourselves, we can keep our forces concentrated, while the enemy’s must be divided.” – ch. VI, v. 8-9 and 13.

Twinkies strike back: Unions are weakening

After the Bakery, Confectionary, Tobacco Workers and Gran Millers International Union attempted to extort Hostess out of unfair and expensive concessions, union workers will be left out of jobs as twinkies return to production.

NBCNEWS.COM reports that “Twinkies are coming back—but under a new management that vows to use nonunion workers.”

A third of Hostess’ production was union labor, but after union members struck, the manufacturer had no choice but to close and reorganize.

Business experts like Alan James of Pace University say, “Unions have been very good in the past making sure we have benefits like maternity leave, but their leadership continues to think only of themselves and not their members.”

Doubting the value of unions, James continued saying “Why should I pay dues when I don’t see any positive results?’

History professor Daniel Opler feels that the Hostess showdown showed the weakness of unions.

“There’s no question the bakers union that rejected a settlement made a tactical error here,” he said.

Unions have pushed several showdowns in recent years. Often asking for concessions that would leave companies unable to compete.

States are empowering workers to ditch expensive union dues by enacting right-to-work laws and workers are supporting them in ever increasing numbers.

Business analyst James Alan said feels that low membership rates could indicate that unions are weakening.

California paper goes after Texas Governor on regulation – gets it wrong

The explosion of a fertilizer factory in West, Texas has re-ignited an ideological debate: does the U.S. have too much regulation or not enough?

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Texas Governor Rick Perry responded harshly to a cartoon in the Sacramento Bee that showed the governor saying that “business is booming in Texas” with “low tax” and “low regs” banners behind him. In the next frame is a giant explosion, seemingly intended to refer to the West explosion that killed and injured so many Texans.

The governor said, “While I will always welcome healthy policy debate, I won’t stand for someone mocking the tragic deaths of my fellow Texans and our fellow Americans. Additionally, publishing this on the very day our state and nation paused to honor and mourn those who died only compounds the pain and suffering of the many Texans who lost family and friends in this disaster.”

The Bee’s editor, Stuart Leavensworth defended the artist Jack Ohman’s  tasteless work saying that Mr. Ohman “made a strong statement about Gov. Rick Perry’s disregard for worker safety, and his attempts to market Texas a place where industries can thrive with few regulations.”

What the cartoonist and editor both fail to mention, probably due to their decidedly progressive ideological alignment, is that the regulations that would have prevented the West explosion, were already in-place, were of a federal nature and the federal government, not Texas’ had failed to keep the plant in check.

California has lived under decades of over-regulation and still gas lines explode killing residents, power plants brown out causing the elderly to heat stroke and die. The idea that the government is the answer is very Californian.

When Texas’ governor starts taking their most profitable businesses, California’s only response looks a lot like the President’s: attack, attack, lie and attack.

Why ammo is getting so expensive

Why is ammo so hard to getAmmo prices have skyrocketed. Not only due to extreme consumer demand and an industry ill-prepared to answer it, but also because our weakening dollar means that buying the base commodities necessary to build ammo  will continue to cost more.

Commodities are bought on an open market. A dollar’s worth of copper in one year is not the same as a dollar’s worth of copper in another. As the Federal Reserve continues to pump dollar after dollar into the economy, each dollar is able to buy a much smaller amount of copper, nickel, lead, tin… All components in the making of ammunition.

There are four major components in a cartridge ,the actual name of the “round” put into a rifle or pistol:  the bullet, the case or casing, the primer and the powder.

The bullet is the projectile – that which flies from the barrel at incredible speed. The bullet is typically made from lead, many times with a copper or brass jacket and it may include a core material of steel or other material.

The case or casing is the part of the cartridge that holds the components together and is what is expelled from the gun after firing. In the U.S.A. the vast majority of cartridge cases are made from brass with a smaller number made from nickel.

Copper is used as a jacket on many bullets and is a component in the manufacturing of brass. Nickel, an alternative for case material,  mainly comes from the mining and processing of pentlandite which comes from Ontario, Canada.

As of today, Nickel is about 10% more expensive than brass, but the the possible copper shortage soon coming may change that equation quickly.

Bullets are mainly lead-core. Lead is a commodity, priced and bought at market prices. As the dollar gets weaker, lead gets more expensive – as do all the components.

The EPA has put severe restrictions around lead. What used to be a cheap and highly-available material is becoming expensive and onerous to get.

To make matters worse, some are saying that we are already at the “copper peak” and supply will only get more difficult from here:

We’re running out of soft metals! In scientific circles, this is called “Peak Copper” and “Peak Minerals.” This is when what were easy to extract metals become fewer, and we phase to expensive and smaller returns on energy expended to get those metals. -The Daily Caller

Short-term, incredible consumer demand is to blame. Some are shooters stuffing shelves so that they never have to deal with this again. Others are profiteers buying every round they can get, upcharging and reselling it. Some are simply buying the ammo as barter currency. If things get ugly, ammo will likely be in much higher demand than an inedible, mainly useless, shiny metal. Only if people agree on gold as a medium of exchange will it be worth anything. Otherwise, food, whiskey, guns and ammo may be what become most valuable.

School cites racist response to West tragedy in firing counselor

School cites racist response to West tragedy in firing counselor

Individuals on both sides of the political aisle have been known to manipulate tragic events to suit their own ideological bent.
Those on the lunatic left, though, unquestionably entertain this prospect with a spirit of vitriol unmatched by their conservative counterparts. Such was the case with a social media comment by, of all people, a public school counselor in Texas.
The Grand Prairie Independent School District fired Karon Wright after an incredibly insensitive comment on her Facebook page seemed to support the genocide of whites.
“It’s amazing the ‘whites’ get angry when Obama speaks,” the post on her account read shortly after a fertilizer plant explosion in nearby West killed numerous residents and first responders while injuring countless others. “Oh well….its most of the whites who is getting blown away. So they will soon be wiped from the earth. Lol [sic].”
Unbelievably, Wright was the woman young students were told to turn to for guidance and support. If she truly embraces these extreme beliefs, I cannot imagine the “counseling” she must have given to unwitting white kids.
For its part, when the school district became aware of the post, administrators fired Wright and released a statement.
In its response, the district called the Facebook post “highly offensive, insensitive to the tragedy happening to our friends and neighbors in West, and disrespectful to the very human bond that we share with the people of West.”
Wright’s defense is that her account was hacked and she has since hired an attorney to contest her dismissal.
It’s become all too common to hear leftists spew unconscionable rhetoric directed at conservatives in general and white conservatives specifically. Usually those reports come from the typical liberal enclaves on either coast. I’m reminded in cases such as this, though, that sometimes the hatred can pop up in my own back yard – deep in the heart of Texas.
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Wounded Vets Take Message of Hope to Victims

Without fanfare or cameras several Marines visited victims of the Boston Bombing with a message of hope. Having lost limbs themselves, they were able to share hope with the hurting.

Bloomberg News: B.J. Ganem lost a leg to a roadside bomb in Iraq while serving in the Marines. Bobby  semper fi fundDonnelly lost his after a high-altitude parachute jump.

When the explosions went off in Boston last week, ripping through the crowd and injuring more than 260 people, the two ex- soldiers and three other veterans quickly flew to Boston to meet with the victims who lost limbs. Their goal: To bring a message of hope to the survivors, showing them how active they could be despite their injuries, Ganem said in an interview.

The Marines are part of the Semper Fi Fund, a group that provides assistance for wounded and critically injured Armed Forces members and their families. The fund helps soldiers with their lives post-injury, adapting their homes, getting prosthetics and providing support.

Bloomberg: Ganem, 36, is an endurance athlete who dances with his daughter using Microsoft Corp.’s motion-activated Kinect gaming console, he said. Donnelly, 30, competes in triathlons. They each own about a half-dozen artificial legs, some of which they showed off for the amputation victims at Boston Medical Center.

“A couple of the girls are big dancers,” Ganem said of the patients he visited for about 30 minutes each in their rooms at the hospital. “I told them, ‘I play the Kinect with my daughter and scored pretty high, and you already know how to dance. I don’t have any rhythm, so you guys can score amazing.’

“They were laughing,” he said yesterday. “It was good, the families really appreciated that.”

Read the entire article at Bloomberg or visit the Semper Fi Fund for more information.

 

 

Would You Sign to Rid U.S. of 1st Amendment?

These guys would.

Clips from this video were shown on Fox and Friends Friday. The creator, Mark Dice, wanted to challenge the knowledge of Obama supporters by offering a petition to rid the US of its pesky First Amendment.

Is it okay for those mean right wingers to criticize the president? Want to stop those haters?

Watch as the majority of these naive voters easily sign away their rights.  They have no idea the importance our forefathers placed on free speech nor it’s role today.

This will make you shake your head.

Congress moves to act on flight delays before recess

The House of Representatives is moving quickly today to finalize a Senate-passed plan that will ease air traffic delays.

Congress goes into recess at the end of this week and politicians fearful of leaving constituents dealing with flight delays and cancellations for another week has put pressure on them to act.

Business travelers and vacationers have been taking the brunt of the Obama administration proposed sequester since FAA furloughs started last Sunday.

In a self-condemning statement, White House spokesman Jay Carney said, ” Ultimately, this is no more than a temporary Band-Aid that fails to address the overarching threat to our economy posed by the sequester’s mindless across-the-board cuts.”

Delays have averaged 30 to 75 minutes at hubs in Boston, New York and Los Angeles.