Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Business is Business

Each time Saddam Hussein's thugs would go into a Kurdish village, not only would they raze every building to the ground, but then they would set mines throughout the villages and the surrounding fields "to ensure that farm boys would lose a leg, or worse, as soon as they started cultivating their ancestral land again." So writes Michael Soussan in his book Backstabbing for Beginners, adding that "one of the UN's most useful services to the Kurds involved demining, mine awareness campaigns, and the provision of prosthetic limbs to the injured."

The only security these villagers had was the "no-fly" zone imposed on Saddam by the U.S. and Britain, but which was considered "illegal" by the UN, because it was never approved by the UN Security Council, since Russia refused to vote for it, because their vote had been bought by Saddam, who sold the Russians one-third of his oil at below market prices.

However, the Kurds were also what seems to me to be the ultimate Macchiavellian pragmatists. They allowed Saddam's smuggling operations to pass through their territory, and, in fact, took a healthy cut of the cash. An estimated $13 billion in profits from this smuggling went into the pockets of Saddam Hussein. Fuel went across the border into Turkey, where it was resold; also by pipeline into Syria, and by ships along the Iranian coastline, and by trucks into Jordan.

Senator Carl Levin disclosed the practice in 2005, after receiving E-mails from the Treasury Department. Nevertheless, the Bush administration "ignored the phenomenon (Jordan and Turkey were U.S. allies). Some of that oil even ended up as fuel at U.S. gas pumps, after it was resold on the international market to American oil companies." Soussan asserts that there is "an underworld of international corruption that makes our world economy go around."

This smuggling route was the Kurd's only major source of ready cash - except for the drug trade, specifically heroin, from Iran and Afghanistan, which also passed through Kurdish territory.

The Day After A Blizzard Can Be Fun!

Those who do not help shovel the driveway find other creative things to do with a shovel.

Merry says, "This stuff is crazy. I am going to hide under this Ponderosa Pine tree until all this white stuff finally stops piling up!"

"I Gotta Be Me"

Michael Soussan shows us in his excellent book Backstabbing for Beginners "that the people the UN sends into countries like Saddam's Iraq are entirely on their own, with no protection from the UN. This meant they lived in fear just like the rest of the population."

Soussan knew sooner or later he would have to operate as "my own man," as opposed to the "easier, safer route of bureaucratic discipline and inertia." Following his conscience would mean rocking boats. "But (he writes) something in my gut made me want to either yell or throw up." I know that is why I am enjoying his book so much. Having worked in and around bureaucracies from 1970-2007, I was never able to refrain from boat-rocking. Like the song says, "I gotta be me."

Saturday, March 28, 2009

You want snow pictures?

Colleen had to travel to Steamboat Springs, the kids had spring break, and here are some of the pictures the kids took in and around Steamboat, where the snow never seems to let up.

The view from Rabbit Ears Pass

After the blizzard of '09

Sunset on the newly snow-capped Rockies.
After all the snow is shoveled out of the driveway, one can enjoy its beauty!
The new puppies, a combination of old English sheepdog bred with a poodle are cute as they can be.

"A breath of fresh air. A smile on people's faces. The absence of fear in their eyes."

"It felt great to be out of Baghdad," writes Michael Soussan, the whistle-blower in the UN's corrupted Oil for Food program, as the UN convoy of ten white SUVs drove north to visit the Kurds. "Away from all the oppresive pictures and statues of Saddam Hussein. Freedom may be a political concept, but it is first and foremost a feeling. A breath of fresh air. A smile on people's faces. The absence of fear in their eyes."

Saddam, of course, massacred as estimated 180,000 Kurds in 1986-1988. Kurds want independence, but the international community seems to regard that as taboo, "because it would upset Turkey, a major NATO ally," writes Soussan.

How Saddam Ripped Off the UN, with Help From Putin and Many Others

Michael Soussan documents in his excellent book, Backstabbing for Beginners, how Russia was in bed with Saddam Hussein all the way in the corrupt Oil for Food program. Moscow colluded with Baghdad to prevent UN inspectors (for four years) from resuming their work looking for weapons of mass destruction. During that period Iraq sold Russian companies $19.1 billion worth of oil. "Hussein explicitly allocated a third of Iraq's underpriced oil to Russia's political leaders. Only they, or a company they approved of, had a right to purchase the below-market oil and resell it to an actual oil company at a profit," according to whistle blower Soussan.

Remember, the people who were screwed by this arrangement were primarily the people of Iraq, but also the rest of the people of the world. "For the price of $19.1 billion, Saddam Hussein had bought himself Russia's seat on the UN Security Council. It guaranteed that the United States would never again be able to attack Iraq with the approval of the UN. Saddam used the profit to buy (mostly) Russian-or Chinese-made weapons on the black market."

But, what about non-oil humanitarian goods that were supposed to go to the Iraqi people? Saddam got 10-30 percent kickbacks from companies selling goods to Iraq. Saddam set up "payment committees" of three Iraq embassy staffers in each of the following countries: "Russia, Greece, Egypt, Switzerland, Italy, Malasia, Turkey, Austria, Yemen, and Syria. France, and other countries, had other creative solutions to help Saddam keep the bribes out of the international banking system. The Iraqi Embassy staff were then charged with transporting the money to Iraq in red canvas bags that were immune from search by airport authorities. Each diplomatic bag could hold up to $1.5 million in $100 bills. The money would be deposited in Saddam's bank to do with as he pleased, just as in the old days, when there were no sanctions on Iraq."

Thursday, March 26, 2009

One More Crisis Not to Waste

With Hillary Clinton's visit to Mexico, there is lots of talk about guns going across the border from America to Mexico, and lots of talk about legalizing marijuana. Are these just two more examples of "not letting a good crisis go to waste?" In other words, are leftists taking advantage of the problems in Mexico to push for drug legalization and gun control? Is it not possible to secure our border?

Some Suggestions for Future Employment for Ward Churchill

According to Denver Post reporter Kevin Vaughn, Ward Churchill explained in court testimony this week that a law "cannot be taken simply at face value, reading the text." With that kind of reasoning, it would appear that he might be a prime candidate for Obama to select to fill the next vacancy on the Supreme Court!

Or, perhaps Churchill can be hired by the New York Times. He was asked by the attorney for the University of Colorado if he disagreed that it was a "deceptive practice to write an article, publish it under someone else's name, and then cite it as a source." "Yes, Churchill testified, "I disagree."

Lining Saddam's Pockets

I am reading an excellent book entitled "Backstabbing for Beginners" by C. Michael Soussan. It is about the UN's Oil for Food program. Soussan was, like many of us, an idealistic new college graduate, who went to work for the program in 1997.

Soussan explains how the program was supposed to work. Iraq would sign a contract for the sale of oil, and send the contract to the UN in New York for approval. After the UN approved the price of oil, a tanker would fill up with the crude. Payment was made in dollars into a UN-controlled account in a French bank in New York. One-third of the proceeds from the sale of Iraqi oil would go toward compensation for the destruction Iraq had created during the Gulf War, and the remaining two-thirds would pay for humanitarian goods to be delivered to the people of Iraq.

Of course, that is not how the proceeds were distributed. Saddam Hussein filled his own pockets with billions of dollars. Soussan describes how Hussein succeeded in "turning the UN into a defensive shield against the world's largest superpower." The humanitarian mission was a masquerade. The UN never stood up to the unspeakably evil bully Hussein. As Soussan writes, "That one of the world's most vicious human rights abusers finally succeeded in turning international law to his advantage remains an astounding achievement, in the grand scheme of history."

The Iranian mullahs certainly learned from watching Saddam. They are using the UN similarly to the way Saddam did, in my opinion.

Soussan was privy to face-to-face meetings with top UN officials and Saddam's henchmen, and he writes about it with humor, irony, and penetrating insight. Saddam's corrupt minions had one job: to cut him in on all the proceeds. The Minister of Health resold medicine to pharmacies in Jordan, thereby causing pain, suffering and death to sick Iraqis, who were deprived of life-saving medicines. $1.9 billion in various humanitarian goods were diverted by various Saddam-controlled ministries.

The combination of UN sanctions, on the one hand, and a totalitarian dictator lining his pockets, on the other hand, ensured that Iraqis were deprived of clean water, food, and medicine, condemning them to a life of despair. We destroyed their entire infrastructure, then left Saddam in power! In 1991 we bombed "every bridge, every water station, and anything that looked remotely like a factory." So, we deprived Saddam of a functional society, rather than to deprive that society from a dysfunctional Saddam."

Soussan continues, "It was Iraq's people, not Saddam and his henchmen, who suffered most from (Desert Storm), and the policy of sanctions that followed." President George H.W. Bush famously said,"We do not have a quarrel with the people of Iraq." Soussan asks, "If we didn't have a quarrel with the people of Iraq, why were they the primary victims of our policies?

And we wonder why Iraqis had so much mistrust for Bush's son nine years after Desert Storm?

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

"Bonfires of Trivialities"

Charles Krauthammer asserts in his latest Washington Post column that the Democrats are lighting "bonfires of trivialities." That is his reference to their threats to write "ex post facto legislation and bills of attainder" regarding AIG bonuses, and terminating a small pilot program approved by President Bush. The latter, of course, refers to the stimulous package passed by the Democrats, which contained a provision to kill the pilot program whereby Mexican trucks were allowed onto American highways.

We are talking 97 Mexican trucks mixing in with 6,500,000 American trucks. Do we really want the Teamsters Union writing our foreign policy? Now Mexico is retaliating by slapping tariffs on 90 Americn products coming out of 40 states.

Maybe I am missing something here. Maybe the pilot program was really a nefarious plot designed eventually to cause our highways to be overrun by Mexican trucks? But, at first glance, it does appear that Krauthammer is correct in his assertion that we are lighting trivial bonfires.

Diplomacy Versus Direct Hits

Obama is reaching out to the "Islamic Republic of Iran." Iran's clerical leader, the real power in Iran, Ayatollah Khamenei, says their religion forbids nuclear weapons. Obama, by speaking to "the Islamic Republic of Iran," seems to be inviting the mullahs to practice what they preach. I am sure that many Israelis are hoping there is time for Obama's diplomacy to work.

On the other hand, remember how Ronald Reagan dealt with one of the main terrorists of his day, Libya's Colonel Khadafyi? That's right, a missile one day landed in one of Khadafyi's bedrooms, and we haven't heard much from the good colonel since then! Surely if we could do that in the eighties, we must have the capability to be even more precise in 2009...perhaps in the bathroom?

Bret Stephens points out in Tuesday's WSJ that there are bloggers in Iran who actually are practicing the ideals of liberty that America stands for. He adds, "A presidency predicated on the view that our values are our strength should not forsake those values for diplomatic expediency, much less betray our friends abroad who live, and have died, by those values."

I respected President Bush for bypassing the Islamic thugs and speaking directly to the Iranian people, expressing solidarity with their desire for freedom.

Tough Words and "Unlikey Tutors"

Using terms such as "lawlessness," "anti-constitutional willfulness," and "political malfeasance," George Will writes a devastating critique of Congress and the Obama administration in his latest Washington Post column. He notes that Sweden, China, and Mexico are three countries who have recently become "unlikely tutors" of America.

Sweden has told Saab that the socialist country "is not prepared to own car factories." China is worried that America's dollar will no longer be a good investment. Mexico is giving America "needed instruction about fundamental rights and the rule of law." Their highest court last year affirmed for Mexicans the right of secret ballots in union elections, "a right the Democrats want to strip from Americans."

Karl Rove uses the term "duplicitnous" to describe the way Obama talks one way and acts another. That is a very tough, stinging word.

A False Notion

Kathleen Parker raises some interesting points in her latest Washington Post column. President Obama has created the White House Council on Women and Girls to ensure that all cabinet-level agencies consider how their policies affect women and girls.

Parker believes we should stop advancing the false notion that girls are a special class deserving special treatment. She notes that "women presently are earning 58 percent of bachelor's degrees, and represent half of graduates in medical and law schools. Moreover, they account for 51 percent of all workers in high-paying management, professional and related occupations.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

We Sent In The Clowns

Veterans are the latest Americans to learn the hard way that President Obama's actions often belies his words. Obama met last Monday with leaders of various veterans groups. As David K. Rehbein, national commander of the 2.6 million member American Legion, wrote in Tuesday's WSJ, "Currently when veterans go to a V.A. hospital for treatment of a service-connected disability, they receive the care without any billing to the veterans or the veterans' insurance." Obama told the veterans Monday that he intends to force private insurance companies to pay for these services.

Rehbein explains,
"Maximum insurance coverage limits could be reached through treatment of the veteran's condition alone. That would leave the rest of the family without healthcare benefits! Thousands of veterans own small businesses. Their insurance premiums will be drastically raised to pay for service-connected disabilities. Many businesses might be tempted to avoid hiring veterans for fear of the impact they would have on insurance rates."

The vets are pissed, Mr. Obama. Honor means something to them. Promises mean something to them. You are making a big mistake.

Recognizing B.S.

I decided last week to finish Ann Coulter's book, Guilty. I had found myself putting the book down frequently, because I recognized the truth of what she was writing, and it was not good for my blood pressure. Coulter meticulously documents many of the things we have seen come to pass right before our eyes in our beloved country in recent years.

Documentation? Here are her chapters, and the number of footnotes per chapter:
Chapter 1 Liberal Motto: Speak Loudly and Carry a Small Victim: 61 footnotes
Chapter 2 Victim of a Crime? Thank a Single Mother: 138 footnotes
Chapter 3 Rage Against Our Machine: 83 footnotes
Chapter 4 Witless Witnesses to History: 44 footnotes
Chapter 5 They Got the Sex, We Got the Scandal: 87 footnotes
Chapter 6 When 95 Percent World Domination Just Isn't Enough: 125 footnotes
Chapter 7 Brave Beautiful Liberals: 143 footnotes

Reading Coulter's fine book will help me recognize media bias and liberal lies more rapidly. For example, today in the Denver Post there is a huge photo of Michelle Obama which takes up half of a page. The accompanying headline: "Poised, Clever, Savvy, Shrewd, Mother, Wife, First Lady, Intelligent." I kid you not!


Courtesy of Ann Coulter's research for her new book, Guilty, here are the original names of some famous people who use pseudonyms:
Wolf Blitzer (Ze'ev Barak)
Bill Clinton (Billy Blythe)
Geraldo Rivera (Gerald Rivera)
Gary Hart (Gary Hartpence)
John Kerry (John Kohn)
Larry King (Larry Ziegler)
Michael Savage (Michael Weiner)

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Rescuing Worried Parents

Amidst all of the doom and gloom economy news, there is at least one bright spot: a "tween" version of Dora the Explorer will be unveiled this fall! AP reporter Nekesa Mumbi Moody writes that when Mattel released a silhouette of the "new" Dora, she appeared to have long flowing hair, appeared to be wearing a scanty skirt, emphasizing her long, shapely legs." For the record, though, she was wearing a "tunic and leggings, and she doesn't have makeup." Whew! You guys had me worried there for a minute.

Moody reports that "Nickelodeon and Mattel say parents wanted a way to keep Dora in their kids lives." What a relief! Thank you, Nickelodeon! Thank you, Mattel! We didn't know what we were going to do without Dora!

Expand Government Health Care?

While Obama pushes for more government involvement in health care, two clinics that treated Medicare patients in Colorado have closed. The reason? Doctors can make more money from treating patients in private pay systems. Sally Pipes, author of "The Top Ten Myths of American Health Care," writes in the March 6 WSJ that "the government programs, Medicare and Medicaid, reimburse providers 20% to 40% less than private health insurance providers, facts which are conveniently ignored by those who want to expand government health care."

An Argument Against Drug Legalization

I am trying to keep up on the continuing stories about drug legalization. John Walters writes in the March 6 WSJ that "Drug Legalization is not the Answer." He points out that "since 2001 the number of young people using illegal drugs has dropped by 900,000 to 2.7 million." He adds, "For decades we did not want to believe that alcohol or drugs could have the power to take over our lives, alter personality or steal individual freedom." Why? Surely anyone who had an addict in their family could see the damage caused by substance abuse?

Walters attributes this failure to the psychological defense mechanism of denial. "Denial increases as dependency worsens," he asserts, but then he argues that, "Substance abuse can be prevented and successfully treated. The rate of drug use among high school seniors has been cut nearly in half since its peak years of 1978 and 1979, to 22.3% in 2008."

The criminal justice system now has more than 2000 drug courts. Child welfare programs also push drug treatment. Courts are now the most powerful force in the country supporting addiction treatment.

Screening for substance abuse is now becoming very common in the health care system. Random drug screening in the military, schools, and many workplaces has produced good results. "3.8% of workers tested positive for drugs in 2007, down from 13.6% in 1988 when random testing began."

10% of the 100 million Americans who drink alcohol each month are alcoholics, and illegal drug use touches 19 million Americans each month, with about a third of those being addicts, according to Walters. He points out that every nation that tried becoming more permissive on drug legalization has backed away when the "resulting destruction became clear." Columbia and Mexico have presidents who are fighting the drug trade, and Columbia has succeeded in making their streets safer.


The Democrats have managed to piss off Mexico big time. Mexico is getting ready to place tariffs on 90 U.S. industrial and agricultural products. Why? Because the $410 billion spending bill Mr. Obama signed last week had a provision that killed the pilot program President Bush had authorized allowing 100 trucks from 29 Mexican companies to transport cargo from Mexico throughout the United States, and back to Mexico.

Unlike most U.S. citizens, who seem to believe Obama's words, other countries are watching what he and his fellow Democrats actually do! $2.4 billion worth of products from 40 states will be affected by the tariffs. Obama speaks words against protectionism, but then gives the unions what they want, time and time again. Why not? They poured millions of dollars into his campaign and lent union workers full time to the Democrat party to do whatever needed to be done in cities all across this country.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

"Enemy Combatants"

Al Qaeda, Taliban, and other terrorist scum are no longer "enemy combatants," according to the Obama administration. It's just another example of Obama throwing a bone to the left, while still asserting America's authority to hold detainees at Guantanamo.

To paraphrase Dennis Miller, these terrorists were just on their way to 7/11 to buy toothbrushes, when someone came along and thrust guns in their hands. Now, instead of fighting the Taliban or al Qaeda with weapons of war, I guess we will, instead, use carefully chosen words!

The only "enemy combatants" will be those people who dare to question Obama's competency or his policies.

"Rhetorical Slight-of-Hand"

Another wise move The Denver Post made after the collapse of the Rocky Mountain News, was to carry Charles Krauthammer's Washington Post columns. Since Krauthammer had a different view than President Bush (he has been a proponent of allowing research on embryonic stem cell lines derived from discarded embryos in fertility clinics), Obama's team invited him to the White House ceremony where Obama announced his executive order leaving embryonic stem cell research to the scientists (He did not attend). No doubt it will be the last ceremony to which Krauthammer is invited, because he writes a scathing piece accusing Obama of "rhetorical slight-of-hand, intellectual laziness, and moral arrogance." I have written about Obama's rhetorical slight of hand. It seems to be his most prominent characteristic.

Krauthammer implies that Obama has decided "that a human embryo is the moral equivalent of a hangnail." Krauthammer cannot believe "within living memory of Mengele," that a U.S. president, Barack Obama, admonished, "We must resist the false choice between sound science and moral values."

Monday, March 16, 2009

New Babies

Now we have some pups to go with the kids. These little black beauties are poodle/old english sheep dog mix.

Hey, don't forget about us male alpacas, with all these kids and pups!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Birds of a Feather

Left wing radical, former University of Colorado professor, Ward Churchill, is suing the university to get his old job back and lots of taxpayer money. His lawyer is trying to argue that Churchill was fired for his public statements congratulating the 9-11 terrorists. The fact is, as Denver Post columnist Mike Rosen points out, Churchill was fired for
"academic fraud, following a thorough investigation by his peers - two dozen faculty members serving on three separate committees - judged that he was guilty and should be held accountable for "repeated and deliberate" plegiarism, fabricated research, willful misstatements of facts, and violations of "bedrock principles of scholarship."

Rosen, a former Rocky Mountain News columnist, is one of several former Rocky writers whom the Post has wisely hired. He points out that Churchill's lawyer will argue that "Churchill's inflammatory speech was what drew attention to him." Rosen writes, "Yeah. So what? Should inflammatory speech serve as an impervious cloak of protection for fraudulent academics?"

Former GOP Senator Hank Brown was President of the University of Colorado when Churchill finally was dismissed. Brown testified in court that he felt it was his moral obligation to recommend Churchill be fired, because he couldn't expect students to follow the university's academic code, if the school couldn't hold the faculty to the same standards!

You've got a point there, Mr. Brown.

Oh, one more thing. Obama colleague Bill Ayres was on campus last week to rally support for Churchill. Birds of a feather.

"A Death Spiral"

Steve Forbes says President Obama is continuing the most destructive policies of the Bush administration. I remember John McCain during the campaign saying that "mark to market" accounting practices had to be ended. Obama has not ended them.

Banks, insurance companies, and other financial institutions, under mark-to-market, have to adjust their balance sheets when the market value of the financial assets they hold goes up or down. When the credit crisis hit in 2007, there was no market for subprime securities. In the fall of 2007 mark-to-market became effective. Despite the toll it was taking on financial institutions, President Bush stubbornly refused to suspend or kill it.

Forbes, writing in the Friday, March 6 Wall Street Journal, also mentions another Bush policy. Bush's SEC commissioners got rid of the so-called "uptick" rule, put in place in 1938, which held that investors could not short a stock unless it went up in price. As Forbes writes, "market volatility exploded."

The SEC also turned a blind eye to "naked" short selling. Short sellers, when they realized the SEC was turning a blind eye to their activities, relentlessly sold financial stocks short.

Forbes recommends President Obama suspend mark-to-market accounting rules, restore the uptick rule, and enforce the prohibition against naked shortselling. He says financial institutions and life insurance companies are in a "death spiral."

Friday, March 13, 2009


Last night Bill O'Reilly cited several bloggers at Daily Kos who were revelling at the news that Bristol Palin's engagement to Tripp's father has ended. O'Reilly had on Greta Van Sustern, who is the only person who has in the past conducted an in-depth interview with Bristol. Greta said that several "journalists" had expressed glee to her about the news. Once again the Democrats and media work their vicious agenda hand-in-hand, with no concern for the fact that this is an eighteen-year-old girl. Of course, the real target, the person who really represents a threat, is Sarah Palin.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Late winter beauty

When snow and Jack Frost come to visit overnight, I hurry outside with my camera in the morning, knowing there will be beauty everywhere.

Chicken business

This is the third day of life for these cute little chicks.
These cornish rocks are fast-growers. These are only two weeks old.
This is the moveable chicken coop the chicks will be moved into in about a week. We hope many of them will soon be on the menu of the brewpub whose spent grain the chicks will be eating. We move the coop every day to give them new grass to eat. The snow melted before noon the next day after it snowed at night.

Politicizing Science

Saying one thing and doing another. Barack Obama is a master of cognitive dissonance. The latest example occurred Monday when he issued the executive order allowing federal funding for the destruction of human embryos. He said he wanted to take politics out of science. He did just the opposite. My understanding is that science has already moved past the need to destroy embryonic stem cells. If that is true, then Obama's action, what he did, was throw red meat to those who run the abortion racket in the U.S., politicizing science.

Friday, March 06, 2009

Who is the real Attack Machine?

In her book "Guilty" Ann Coulter continues with her emphasis on Democrats' "poor me, I'm a victim" theme. She details how Democrats Clinton and Obama tried to outvictim each other during the 2008 primary campaign. In the end, Hillary, with her comments about a mythical Republican attack machine, was no match for Barack, who trumped her by claiming to be a victim of Republicans, Hillary, and racists.

The real attack machine is the media. Ignoring the fact that, as Coulter asserts, "Obama had the most liberal voting record in the Senate, he attacked Americans who "cling to God and guns," his spiritual mentor was a deranged racist, his associations with felons and domestic terrorists" - the media finally stopped "aggressively lying for the Clintons," and treated Obama like the biggest victim (that's how you can tell who the media favors).

But, there was one person who did obey the media's command that Republicans not mention any facts unfavorable to Obama: John McCain. Whether McCain was trying to impress the media, or whether he was afraid of the Media Attack Machine, or both, Coulter wants to nominate him for the "Who's the Biggest Pussy?" contest.

Chicken McNuggets and Distortions

Have you heard about the woman who called 911 not once, not twice, but three times, while at a McDonalds in Florida? I first heard her ridiculed on a sports radio show, then yesterday on Rush Limbaugh, who said she called 911 because McDonalds did not have the Chicken McNuggets she ordered.

Well, that is not quite true. She ordered Chicken McNuggets and fries. When she was called to pick up her order, McDonalds informed her that they were out of Chicken McNuggets, and asked her to order something else. She didn't want something else. She wanted Chicken McNuggets! She asked for her money back. They would not give her her money back!

I think McDonalds should have given her her money back. Why do people like Limbaugh want to distort the facts to make McDonalds look good and her look bad? Yes, I know that 911 calls should be reserved for life and death type emergencies. The woman was not an educated person. When the 911 operator asked her if she had tried to talk to the manager, the woman answered, "the manager are here." Is that why she was ridiculed by the radio hosts?

The woman said the reason she called 911 was because she did not know what else to do, except "go over the counter," meaning, I guess, attack the cashier physically. So, to her, the rational thing to do was to call 911. I bet she has been in other situations in her neighborhood in which 911 has been called to resolve disputes and prevent violence. That's why it occurred to her that calling 911 was a proper option.

Is our conservative cause so weak that we have to resort to distortions and exaggerations of facts?

Play Ball!

We are now $1.8 trillion in debt, so why not spend another $3.8 million to restore an already half-demolished baseball stadium in Detroit? Yep, it passed the Senate. It is in Detroit, where the median price of a home is now $7,500.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Single Motherhood: "The Active Social Policy of Liberals"

Ann Coulter, in her new book "Guilty," makes the amazing discovery that "getting pregnant is the result of having sex without using a condom." She quotes from the New York Times, which Coulter notes uses the passive voice to claim that single mothers on welfare become pregnant out-of-wedlock "because their youth was overtaken by motherhood." Their dillemas were caused by external factors, not their own exercise of free will.

The media would have us believe that poverty causes single motherhood and crime. Coulter documents in great detail with many examples how "the media constantly praises single mothers and sneers at the unhip, drab middle class with their bourgeois prejudices against having children out-of-wedlock." Coulter alleges that "we could wipe out chronic poverty in America tomorrow if women could just manage to get married before having children - and to stay married after having children." But she notes, and backs up with myriad examples, "single motherhood is the active social policy of liberals."

Coulter blasts sex education programs for promoting condom use by children. She asserts that "more seventh graders know how to put on a condom than can name the first president - although kids who are really good with a condom all seem to know the name of the 42nd."

Coulter notes that one conservative politician, Dan Quayle, dared to speak up for the 1.5 million children born out-of-wedlock every year in America, when he criticized the Murphy Brown t.v. show. Hollywood and the media came down so hard on Quayle, that no politician since Quayle has dared mention the subject. As she says, "the real victims, children raised without fathers, were swept under the rug." Single mothers who use donors' sperm come in for some of Coulter's biggest criticisms.

Coulter heartbreakingly describes in painstaking detail how liberals have destroyed the centuries-old legal authority of traditional marriage. The original rule of law that prevailed for centuries was that "unless a man is married to a woman when she gives birth to a child, he has no rights to that child, and unless a woman is married to a man when she gives birth to his child, she has no right to his paycheck or his time."

White Males: "The archetypical villains of liberal fairy tales"

Which societal problem does Ann Coulter believe is the worst one? Single motherhood! Ann cites research from many sources showing that children of single mothers have many obstacles to overcome. They are six times more likely to be in poverty than children of married parents. 85% of homeless families are headed by single mothers. 90% of welfare recipients are single mothers. Children brought up in single mother homes are five times more likely to commit suicide, nine times more likely to drop out of high school, ten times more likely to abuse chemical substances, fourteen times more likely to commit rape, twenty times more likely to end up in prison, and 32 times more likely to run away from home. Single mothers cost the U.S. taxpayer #112 billion every year.

Moreover, Coulter believes that a common thread runs through too many of these households: the mothers see themselves as "passive victims of circumstances." All of their life choices are things that happen to them, these "marionettes of happenstance," a term coined by English writer Theodore Dalrymple. Coulter is even tough on battered women, asserting that they are in fact victims and accomplices, because they surely knew their batterers had violent tendencies before they were actually beaten by them. According to Coulter, their overriding concern was to hold themselves blameless.

These comments by Coulter on battered women are extremely controversial. They fly in the face of accepted dogma held by persons in the domestic violence professions, who usually are known as "victim's advocates." Batterers, whether they be male of female, are very good con artists; very good at fooling their mates and others.

Once, when I was a child protection social worker and county director of social services, there was in Denver a national conference on domestic violence. I decided to go, because I had so many cases in which domestic violence was a factor. At the conference there were many hundreds of women, and less than ten males. After attending a large general session, the audience was invited to participate in workshop discussions in smaller groups. I selected the workshop I wanted to attend, and, when I got to the room where the workshop was being held, I was the only man among about a hundred women. Before beginning the workshop, the leaders asked me to leave. I guess it was a public health thing; they did not want me to infect them with a male point of view, and certainly not that of a white male, which Coulter observes is the "archetypical villain of liberal fairy tales."

Born Yesterday

Two little girls who will grow up to be milk producers.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Last Night's Sunset

Evaluating Presidencies

Historian Thomas Fleming made me smile yesterday when I read his WSJ piece entitled "Was George W. Bush the Worst President?" Fleming cites a few examples from history that make Dubya look pretty good.

Did you know that Thomas Jefferson actually walked off the job, not to return, for the whole last year of his second term? His successor, James Madison, "watched while 4500 British troops disembarked from their ships, marched to Washington D.C., and burned down the White House and the Capital!" Woodrow Wilson referred to Irish Americans as "loud-mouthed micks" for objecting to his pro-British policies. President Harding "had a concealed box at the Gayety Burlesque Theater where he spent many afternoons and nights." FDR tried to deal with economic problems by making government bigger and bigger, while inflation and unemployment kept getting worse and worse, until World War II. Jimmy Carter lectured us about our "crisis of spirit," while not having a clue about what to do about the economy or the Iranians.

Fleming concluded that Bush, like many of the presidents mentioned above, will be remembered positively for many of his accomplishments, but will have those kudos balanced off with some of his failures. The picture will be clearer in fifteen or twenty years.

What happens when government pays the hospital bills?

Michelle Obama recently resigned her postion as a highly paid board member at the University of Chicago Medical Center in the Hyde Park neighborhood where the Obamas lived. That hospital is in the news, because they have been considering a plan to cut the ER beds from 31 to 21. Two high ranking doctors quit their administrative posts to protest the plan, saying it could lengthen already long waiting times for patients who are "the poorest of the poor." Currently the wait is at least eight hours. If they need to be transfered from ER to ICU, add another 14 or more hours to the wait.

The real question being debated is how many patients on Medicaid and older patients on Medicare can a hospital afford to serve? That particular hospital makes more money on specialties like oncology, gastroenterology, and neurosurgery, that attract patients from around the U.S. Hospitals do not do as well when the government is picking up the tab for patients. Are you paying attention, Barack?

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Coulter on the Media

Some quotes from Ann Coulter's new book "Guilty" on the media:
"The media are irreducibly powerful because they produce everything we know about the world outside of our personal experience." "How the media reports stories, which stories they report, and which they don't report create the universe of accepted facts." "Liberals with beachfront haciendas are scared to death of global warming's effect on beach erosion," so that dominates the news.

The Victim Game

I have begun reading Ann Coulter's new book "Guilty". I know she is grating to listen to on the radio, and painful to watch on t.v., but the woman can flat out nail it as a writer. She does her homework, and then blasts the hypocrites right out of the galaxy.

She begins her new book with this sentence: "Liberals always have to be victims, particularly when oppressing others." Have you noticed that phenomena? I have been studying it for many years. I have done my best as a parent to teach my children not to do it. Coulter calls it "the game of He Who Is Offended First Wins," and "pretending to be insulted and register operatic anger."

It is not an easy thing for parents to stop, because it is so perverse. Coulter again: "Ironically, liberals' victim strategy works in this country precisely because of America's boundless tenderheartedness and generosity." Yes, and it is also our tenderheartedness and generosity as parents that our own children are most likely to prey upon when playing the victim game. Of course, as always, what we ourselves model is the most important teacher.

Stealth Legalization of Pot

President Obama, through his Attorney General Eric Holder, plans to end raids on medical marijuana dispensaries. We ask Mexico to fight the suppliers, but we make it so there will be fewer repercussions for those who use pot in states with liberal marijuana laws. It's a perfect scenario for the organized crime syndicates: we keep it illegal, thereby keeping the criminal gangs in charge of all aspects of the business, and at the same time we tolerate marijuana use. Just one more example of hypocrisy and stupidity in governmental policy.

Shaking Us Down

So, there is a new plan to give AIG $30 billion more from TARP funds. This is the fourth deal for them! They reported a 60 billion dollar quarterly loss yesterday. They got $40 billion in November. Even Citigroup only got $50 billion, and Bank of America only got $45 billion! C'mon federal government, loosen up; you can shake us down for more than that!

AIG has 74 million policyholders. But, they have been allowed to dabble in much more than insurance, obviously. Hedge funds and an aircraft-leasing business are two that I have read about.

My dad must be turning over in his grave right now. He lived through the Great Depression working three jobs at once: coach, teacher, and principal. He saw hundreds of banks go under, but noticed that insurance companies remained stable. After being debilitated by a bout with rheumatic fever, he became an insurance agent, working predominantly with farmers in Iowa.

No need for teleprompters

I listened to Rush Limbaugh yesterday on my drive to work. He seemed to be revitalized after the huge response he got to his CPAC speech Saturday. I admit that I like it when he spends more time articulating conservative principles, and less time doing schtick. I would love to see a Limbaugh/Palin ticket in 2010. Neither of them needs a teleprompter to tell us where they stand.

Iran: The "Disease" of the Middle East

John Bolton, writing in yesterday's WSJ, believes there has been a "substantive collapse of U.S. policy and resolve in the teeth of Iran's progress in its nuclear program." Obama's move toward direct negotiations with Iran, in Bolton's view, only allows Iran to buy more time "to marry its impending nuclear weapons with its satellite-launching ballistic missile capability."

Ambassador Bolton points out that we deferred to Europe to use its diplomacy to try to convince the mullahs to reduce Iran's nuclear program and Europe has failed. So, what is Obama doing? He is repeating the same approach as Europe, but this time it will be the U.S. who is offering the carrots and sticks.

Bolton is also critical of our policy of dealing with Hamas, Hezbollah, and Syria in an attempt to end the Arab-Israeli conflict in Gaza. By doing so we only enhance the bargaining power of those terrorists. Instead, Bolton recommends we focus on changing the Tehran regime, since it is the "disease, the central threat to the region."

A third mistake we are making, according to Bolton, is to legitimize Iran as a factor in Iraqi affairs. Bolton has no trust whatsoever in the mullahs, and neither should we. He believes Iran's mullahs have demonstrated that they want unstable neighbors in Iraq and Afghanistan, so that they can undermine U.S. interests at every turn.

Admiral Mike Mullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, says Iran has now amassed enough fissile material to produce at least one nuclear weapon.

Monday, March 02, 2009

Loving Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness

Rush Limbaugh's speech to CPAC has stirred a lot of discussion. I am amused at conservatives who preface their comments about Rush with something negative, like, "I don't listen to his program, but I read his editorials" or, "he would make a lousy president." Rush realizes we are in a fight for the very soul of this country. He knows what liberals are all about: power and control. He fights them every day, because he does not want them to have power and control. He did not say anything at CPAC different from what he says every day on his program, which I listen to every day. He and Laura Ingraham stand out in at least one respect: they both understand that this is a fight, with real consequences for the present and future of our country, and they both passionately fight for conservative principles, not just mumble on dispassionately trying to be all things to all people.

Rush purposely tries to irritate and provoke liberals, because they respond viciously and reveal themselves for the phonies they are. Also, the more they and weak-kneed "conservatives" whine about something Rush says, the more popular Rush becomes, and the more Rush enjoys life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness!

Rush is presently conducting "women's summits," in which he only takes calls from women who have problems with some facet of his personality. It is also his way of ridiculing Obama for having Congress members to the White House for a "summit" last week. I think what these women have problems with is his insistence about always being right about everything. I don't perceive him that way. I see him as a man who is supremely confident; the kind of confidence Ronald Reagan had when he walked away from the Soviets in Iceland, and returned home to build an anti-missile defense system, which the Soviets tried to keep up with, but, instead, collapsed. Reagan, too, knew his opponents must be defeated. He shared the same belief in America's core principles as Rush articulates daily. Reagan knew from his days as President of the Screen Actors Guild that Commies and elitist liberals were out to destroy America. Rush believes that liberals and socialists are also out to destroy the essence of America.

Rush does not disrespect his listeners or callers. The pompousness and arrogance are a schtick, a comic theme. Men need manly leaders. Women need men who are not self-centered (so says my wife, who does not like to listen to Rush, because of his pompous and arrogant schtick).

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Wisdom of the Children on March 1

What does God want us to be doing? Answers from the children:
Be kind, gentle, act like Jesus, worship Him on Sundays and sometimes Saturdays. He wants us to pray and to enjoy him forever. Tell God "thank you" whenever you are feeling happy and protected.