March 29, 2015

Torture or Education?

My article as originally published in American Thinker:

The release of the Senate CIA “torture report” has certainly prompted some mixed reactions, mostly divided along party lines.  The mainstream media have expressed moral outrage – outrage – over the contents of the report, while the conservative media has rightfully questioned the timing of the release, the numerous holes in the report, and the validity of describing as “torture” the methods used by the CIA.  Add to mix the hypocrisy of the MSM ignoring Obama’s dead-by-drone policy that has blown many terrorists and innocents into chunks.

As to whether the interrogation methods employed by the CIA constitute actual “torture,” a Human Events article from 2007 (since we’re dredging up the past) written under a pseudonym by a retired naval aviator (yes, a slight pro-Navy bias is detectable) may help provide some context:

Based on lessons learned from survivors of the brutal North Korean and North Vietnam torture of US military prisoners of war, the Department of Defense ordered all branches of the services to implement comprehensive Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape (S.E.R.E.) training programs. Every member of Congress should be extremely well versed on the military S.E.R.E. programs since they have had direct oversight and funding of these programs for over 40 years. [snip]

What actually happens in S.E.R.E. in the field? Classes of 40 or more “students” are put through beach and water (swimming) survival techniques, similar to the TV show “Survivor” but without the rewards challenges. The class is then moved to a remote location to survive and evade prior to entering the US Navy run POW camp.

Once captured, these “students” were hooded, with their hands bound; fully interrogated; and then finally brought to the POW camp:

Arriving at the POW Camp I was kept hooded and placed in a small box, 2 feet wide, 3 feet long and maybe 3 feet high. I was left the fetal position, sitting on my butt, stripped nearly naked (just week old BVD’s) and left sealed with your defecation can inside your box. Heat, cold, isolation, no communications, and constant noise, music, propaganda, coupled with verbal abuse by your captors is the norm, 24/7.

Almost makes club Gitmo sound like paradise, but it gets worse:

Then it was time for the dreaded waterboard.  What I didn’t know then, but I do now, is that as in all interrogations, both for real world hostile terrorists (non-uniformed combatants) and in S.E.R.E. a highly trained group of doctors, psychologists, interrogators, and strap-in and strap-out rescue teams are always present. My first experience on the “waterboard” was to be laying on my back, on a board with my body at a 30 degree slope, feet in the air, head down, face-up. The straps are all-confining, with the only movement of your body that of the ability to move your head. Slowly water is poured in your face, up your nose, and some in your mouth. The questions from interrogators and amounts of water increase with each unsuccessful response. Soon they have your complete attention as you begin to believe you are going to drown.

And if a “student” POW escapes and is subsequently recaptured?

This time we went right to the water hose in the face, and a wet towel held tightly on my forehead so that I could not move my head. I had embarrassed my captors and they would now show me that they had total control. The most agonizing and frightful moments are when the wet towel is placed over your nose and mouth and the water hose is placed directly over your mouth. Holding your breath, bucking at the straps, straining to remain conscious, you believe with all your heart that, that, you are going to die. [snip]

S.E.R.E. training is not pleasant, but it is critical to properly prepare our most endangered combat forces for the reality of enemy capture. Was I “tortured” by the US military? No. Was I trained in an effort to protect my life and the lives of other American fighting men? Yes! Freedom is not Free, nor does it come without sacrifice. Every good American understands this basic principle of our country and prays for the young men and women who have sacrificed and are out on the front lines protecting us today.

The author writes that there may have been as many as 40,000 of these students who were “tortured” over the years in the SERE program.  He also specifically mentions one pilot who wasn’t given the opportunity to utilize his SERE training:

Lt Tom “Stout” McGuinness of the VF-21 “Freelancers” went through S.E.R.E. training during my tenure. But when it came down to the crisis moment, his “interrogators” did not give him the waterboard. They merely went into the cockpit of American Airlines Flight 11, slashed Tom’s throat, and flew the first aircraft into the North Tower of World Trade Center on 9/11.

I must admit that facing the kind of training our soldiers had to endure in the SERE program sounds horrendous and may explain why I chose a different path in life.  But I am forever thankful for those who willingly volunteer to rigorously train and bravely serve in order to protect the United States of America.  Perhaps individuals who don’t care to receive the same type of education that many of our elite U.S. military forces once received should think twice before willingly becoming terrorists


Putin Helps Assad Clean Out His Garage

My article as originally published in American Thinker:         

Not  only does it appear as though Putin is “bailing out” Obama in this whole Syrian mess, but he may be doing Assad a huge favor as well (no,  not by saving him from an “unbelievably small” assault) by brokering the  hand-over of Syria’s chemical  weapons.

Of  course Bashar al-Assad welcomes the Russian proposal to secure Syrian chemical  weapons. Why wouldn’t he?  He gets his patron as his overseer, undermines  Barack Obama’s credibility in the region even more, and gets to go back to his  civil war with less chance of any significant international intervention against his  regime.

I’m  sure Assad welcomes Putin’s help in more ways than one.  I for one would  certainly welcome Putin’s proposal, but applied to my own  household.

I  have a large cabinet in my garage for storing all of the dangerous chemicals  I’ve accumulated over the years, left over from many a household project.   Even an “unbelievably small” fire could cause a toxic mess out there.   Painting a red line around this cabinet for safety would be of little use, so I  hope to dispose of its contents fairly soon.  The fact is, these chemicals  are no longer usable and are just sitting around taking up a lot of space that I  would prefer to use for other purposes.  But it can get quite expensive to  dispose of these toxic chemicals, so I’m holding off for now.

It  sure does look as if Assad has got it made with Putin’s offer to help offload  these chemical weapons, since they really can’t be used, are difficult to  dispose of, and take up a ton of precious storage space.

As  to what Assad will do with this extra space, Putin may have the solution for that as well.

In  return, Putin promised bolstered conventional weapons shipments, “some of which  are already on their way” to Syria from  the Russian Black Sea port of Novorossiysk. The TV report did not specify which  weaponry Putin is supplying to Assad, but noted that the Syrian regime needs  more fighter planes for use to quash rebel forces, spare parts for tanks, and  all kinds of other military equipment to  replenish stocks depleted during the two-and-a-half years of fighting that have  left well over 100,000 Syrians dead. An estimated 1,600 Syrians have died in the  three weeks since the alleged August 21 attack.

The  next time my local disposal site has one of those “free hazardous waste  disposal” days, you can bet I’ll be there to get rid of all the toxic chemicals  from my garage cabinet.  I can then make much better use of the once wasted  space, but certainly for something other than “U.N. approved” Syrian-killing  weaponry.


Kerry Threatens Assad with ‘Nanoassault’

A-bombMy article as originally published in American Thinker:         

Perhaps  John Kerry reads American Thinker and got the idea from me?  The  problem for Kerry, though, is that my “nanoassault  rifle” piece which poked a little fun at the Left on the issue of gun control was pure satire.  If this  wasn’t some sort of attempt at humor on the part of Kerry, things are much worse  than they appear.

From  Breitbart:

Kerry:  “We will be able to hold Bashar al-Assad accountable without engaging in troops  on the ground or any other prolonged kind of effort in a very limited, very  targeted, short-term effort that degrades his capacity to deliver chemical  weapons without assuming responsibility for Syria’s civil war. That is exactly  what we are talking about doing – unbelievably small, limited kind of  effort.”

If  Kerry wants to borrow my “nanoassault rifle” he is more than welcome to it  because if his goal is to truly do something so “unbelievably small,” he might  as well save the taxpayers as much expense as possible.  And the net effect  would probably be about the same.

Kerry  may speak sternly, but it appears he carries a nannostick.


Some Clown

My article as originally published in American Thinker:

Some  clown heads an administration plagued by numerous scandals including: IRSgate, Benghazigate, Fast and  Furiousgate, Pressgate and Pigfordgate to name just a few.

Some  clown claims the above mentioned are nothing but “phony  scandals.”

Some  clown fails to comprehend that raising the minimum wage would be a disaster.

Some clown claims the United States needs to be “fundamentally  transformed.”

Some  clown continues to do an end run around the Constitution in order to protect a chosen few from the  harmful effects of ObamaCare.

Some  clown’s economic policy is (predictably) failing.

Some  clown has overseen the lowest labor participation rate since  1979.

Some  clown has been charge while food stamp usage has reached an all time high, all  while the USDA attempts to recruit even more users into the system.

Some  clown continues to get a free pass from the mainstream media.

I  could go on and on because this clown’s resume contains even more  highlights.
Unfortunately, this happens to be this particular clown’s  first non-theoretical rodeo.

So does anyone  really give a rat’s behind what the skin color of the above mentioned clown is?

Meanwhile,  a rodeo clown has been banned for life for carrying on the comedic tradition of having a little bit of fun (even if in bad taste)  at the expense of a certain president.


America Gets ‘Te’o’d’ by Obama

obama-forwardMy article as originally published in American Thinker:

It’s easy to understand why the mainstream media ran with the heart wrenching story about Notre Dame football player Manti Te’o’s “dead girlfriend” as well as the other conflicting stories about the couple’s “relationship” without engaging in actual journalism. The story happened to fit within the approved media template and didn’t require any further manufacturing. But with President Obama, the MSM must work overtime to positively spin everything he says or does before it is passed on to the public as objective “news.”

It finally took a member of the new media — Deadspin — to do some actual investigative reporting on the Te’o story.

The bottom line according to Deadspin:

There was no Lennay Kekua. Lennay Kekua did not meet Manti Te’o after the Stanford game in 2009. Lennay Kekua did not attend Stanford. Lennay Kekua never visited Manti Te’o in Hawaii. Lennay Kekua was not in a car accident. Lennay Kekua did not talk to Manti Te’o every night on the telephone. She was not diagnosed with cancer, did not spend time in the hospital, did not engage in a lengthy battle with leukemia. She never had a bone marrow transplant. She was not released from the hospital on Sept. 10, nor did Brian Te’o congratulate her for this over the telephone. She did not insist that Manti Te’o play in the Michigan State or Michigan games, and did not request he send white flowers to her funeral. Her favorite color was not white. Her brother, Koa, did not inform Manti Te’o that she was dead. Koa did not exist. Her funeral did not take place in Carson, Calif., and her casket was not closed at 9 a.m. exactly. She was not laid to rest.

Lennay Kekua’s last words to Manti Te’o were not “I love you.”

Te’o claims that he was a victim of this hoax as well:

This is incredibly embarrassing to talk about, but over an extended period of time, I developed an emotional relationship with a woman I met online. We maintained what I thought to be an authentic relationship by communicating frequently online and on the phone, and I grew to care deeply about her. To realize that I was the victim of what was apparently someone’s sick joke and constant lies was, and is, painful and humiliating.

When will the American people wake up to the incredible hoax that is currently being perpetrated upon them? Much like Te’o, Americans are involved in an emotional relationship with an individual despite most having never met him face to face. That individual is President Obama. But unlike Te’o’s relatively harmless “girlfriend” hoax, President Obama’s hoax, thanks to the help of the MSM, is a threat to every American and threatens the survival of the republic as we know it.

Fortunately, the new media is willing to step up and do the job the ideologically driven MSM refuses to do.

So just to be clear on a few of the crazy things we’ve been told:

Ambassador Stevens was not murdered because of a dim-witted amateur video. Food stamps are not economic stimulus. This current economic mess is not George Bush’s fault. Obama’s mother was not denied health insurance coverage as claimed. America is not safer under Obama. Raising tax rates does not create jobs. Disagreeing with President Obama does not make one a racist. The cost of health care will not be lowered under ObamaCare. President Obama is not suddenly a Second Amendment advocate.

The science of man-caused global warming is not settled. The economy is not getting better. The Tea Party is not an extremist hate group. Paying off crony donors with green energy loans does not lower energy prices. Reducing the rate of spending growth is not a spending cut. Beyoncé did not actually sing at Obama’s inauguration. Kids do not like Mrs. Obama’s new school lunch program. Trillion dollar deficits and skyrocketing debt does not create prosperity and is not sustainable.

QE 1-3 did not work. QE 4 will not work. The President does not have the power to bypass the Constitution. Rising unemployment is not positive economic news. Gun control does not control criminals. Freedom is not “preserved” by violating the First Amendment rights of religious institutions. Demonizing the rich does not put the poor and middle class back to work. The economy did not tank in the fourth quarter due to a lack of federal spending. So-called “assault weapons” are not more deadly than semi-auto hunting rifles. Just calling something a stimulus does not mean it will stimulate. The mainstream media is not interested in truthfully reporting any of this.

President Obama is definitely not to be compared with Ronald Reagan. .

How painful and humiliating does this hoax have to get before a majority of the American people finally take notice and do something?

For The Children

New AEI video designed to teach children about how entitlements are corrupting America.

A Time to Choose

My article as originally published in American Thinker:    

America is at a crossroads and it’s time to choose a path forward. Will we continue to move “Forward” along Obama’s path of “fundamental transformation” and unsustainable big-government? Or will we rediscover our Constitutional compass and chart a path back towards a sustainable, limited government?

While trying to comprehend how it is that anyone could be undecided in this current presidential election, the movie A Time to Kill came to mind.

In short:

Carl Lee Hailey (Samuel L. Jackson) takes the law into his own hands after the legal system fails to adequately punish the men who brutally raped and beat his daughter, leaving her for dead. Normally, a distraught father could count on some judicial sympathy in those circumstances. Unfortunately, Carl and his daughter are black, and the assailants are white, and all the events take place in the South.

The scene that stood out was the one in which Hailey’s lawyer, Jake Brigance (Matthew McConaughey) struggled to find a way to persuade the white jury to look beyond race, see the true horror of the situation and acquit a black man. His solution was to deliver a powerful closing argument designed to get the jurors to set aside their personal biases, visualize what it would be like if the tables were turned and then do the right thing.

Jake asked the jury to close their eyes and picture Carl Lee Hailey’s young daughter. He then described, in brutal detail, the horrendous abuse she had suffered at the hands of her white attackers. In conclusion, he asked the white jury to then imagine that this young black girl was instead white.

Are some undecided voters paralyzed from doing the right thing in this election due to being hung-up on race, though certainly not for the same reasons as in the movie?

Many Americans who voted for Obama in 2008 understand that the last four years have been an unmitigated disaster, yet surprisingly, President Obama still enjoys relatively decent poll numbers. Among the conflicted are surely African-Americans who gave 95% of their support to Obama in the 2008 election and will mostly continue to do so based largely upon race. Others, independent voters, who thought that Obama was a moderate, were ready for a “change” and wanted to partake in the historic election of this nation’s first African-American president, but may now feel guilty or be fearful of being labeled as racist if they don’t vote the same way in this election.

President Obama took office during uncertain economic times with the promise of “hope and change.” He came disguised as a moderate and promised to bring all Americans together, fix the economy and to heal all that ailed this nation.

Those who are still undecided should take a moment to really think about and visualize what President Obama has instead given us:

• Five trillion dollars added to our national debt in just four years.

• Yearly trillion-plus dollar deficits.

• Trillions of dollars printed right out of thin air.

• The first U.S. credit downgrade in history.

• Unemployment that is higher now than when he took office.

• Black unemployment that has risen to 14.3% from 13.4%.

• Millions of workers are no longer participating in the workforce due to a lack of opportunity.

• Household incomes that have declined by 8.2% since he took office.

• Gas prices that have more than doubled while permits to drill for oil and natural gas on public lands have been reduced under Obama.

• Billions lost on green energy boondoggles after his wealthy campaign donors received green energy loans to prop up failing companies.

• Food stamp usage that has exploded to more than 47 million recipients.

• Tax dollars used to advertize for even more food stamp users.

• Half of college graduates can’t find full-time jobs.

• Obamacare will cost at least three times more than promised.

• Waivers were given to many Obama donors to protect them from Obamacare.

• $716 billion was cut from Medicare to fund Obamacare.

• Demonization of job creators.

• Terminated the pensions of nonunion Delphi workers to protect unionized GM workers.

• Demonization of a diverse group of Americans who call for fiscal responsibility.

• Bypassed the law to enact a variation of the DREAM Act.

• A fake war on women.

• Women earning less then men in Obama’s own administration.

• Jobless rate among women up 15.5% under Obama.

• A cover up over the Fast and Furious gun-running scandal.

• A massive cover-up over the Benghazi terrorist attack.

I could go on.

Imagine what your future would be like if this were to continue.

Imagine what your children and grandchildren’s future would be like if this were to continue.

Now, imagine that the President who was responsible for all of the above was instead a Republican. Would he still deserve to be reelected?

This election isn’t about one man or the color of his skin; it’s about the future of our nation. It’s not about voting for “revenge” but it is about voting for “love of country.” It’s about a return to and maintenance of the limited the roll of government. Our republic was designed this way because we can’t fully trust any one man, or any one-thousand men — of any party.

Please do the right thing this Election Day.

Obama Inherited an Opportunity

President Obama keeps complaining about the mess he inherited.  But:

The truth, however, is otherwise: Obama inherited a fantastic set of political circumstances.

The economy was near the trough of the recession, and would likely have rebounded quickly, had Obama not intervened with radical new policies such as Obamacare and Dodd-Frank. Even allowing for the (disputed) argument that financial collapses lead to slower, longer recoveries, it is likely that the economy would have rebounded far more quickly had Obama not created new uncertainty, new business costs, and new debt.

The controversial bailouts–the Troubled Asset Relief Program and the auto bailout–were already under way, with the former passing Congress with bipartisan majorities and the latter initiated by Bush when Congress rejected it. Both of these massive expenditures, which also gave the government unprecedented economic control, could have been fodder for intense opposition under Obama–but he was spared the task.

Read the rest at Breitbart

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Is the Obama Great Depression Coming?

And will it be worse this time?  An interesting read by Wayne Allyn Root at Town Hall.

The question is, is Obama following this same toxic game plan out of leftist naiveté and ignorance? Afterall, Obama’s lifetime of business experience before taking up residence in the White House would not qualify him to run a Bronx bodega. Yet we made him CEO of the world’s biggest economy. Oops.

Or does Obama understand exactly what he’s doing? Is Obama’s goal to overwhelm the system with debt and entitlements, incite crisis, sow doubt about capitalism, redistribute the wealth of business owners (his political opposition), and force Americans to their knees begging for government to save them, thereby opening the door to big government socialism, or at the very least European-style Social Capitalism (a hybrid of socialism mixed with capitalism).

Does it really matter?

Here’s where the story gets downright frightening……………

Read the rest at     

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Obama’s Budget Fantasy

The fact that Obama actually claims to be reducing the deficit is unbelievably dishonest.

John Hayward at Human Events introduces a little reality:

President Obama submitted his budget proposal for fiscal year 2013, and it contains some eye-popping numbers. Despite long-standing promises to reduce the deficit – in fact, he has explicitly promised to cut it in half before the end of his first term – he calls for a whopping $1.3 trillion deficit next year, and keeps them over a trillion dollars for several years to come. At the end of the ten-year period projected in Obama’s budget, we would be the proud owners of a $25.9 trillion national debt. His government would spend $3.8 trillion next year, more than ever before.

Read the rest at:   

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