Pearl Harbor Must Not Be Forgotten

Omaha Beach

Today is National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day, which commemorates the Japanese surprise attack on the Hawaiian naval base that killed over 2,400 American servicemen and women and was the tripwire for our entry in to WWII.

This post is actually a reblog of mine from 2014, but I thought it appropriate to share today in honor of the importance of the day.

It’s difficult to fathom the horrific trauma that occurred when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor and the huge significance of America entering WWII because of it.  9/11 is the only frame of reference for me and though there are many differences between the two, the one constant in my mind are the words, “Never Forget.”

They sound cliche those words, just something easy to say when anniversary dates of infamous  of tragic events come around.  Yet the importance that lies beneath the surface cannot be overstated.

Our world is dangerous and you can be sure there are people who this very minute are plotting ways to destroy us and the freedom centered values we hold dear.  Remembering this is essential to a future of victory and peace.  When our guard is down our enemies will strike.

I know nothing  about geopolitical strategies or military preparedness but I do know we must constantly remain vigilant and keeping the memory of Pearl Harbor alive plays an important role.  Never forget indeed.

Business Insider has some great photos here of Pearl Harbor events, be sure to click on this link check them out.

Also, for a fabulous first person account of what happened during that fateful day, please read my blogger friend Al’s heart pounding post here about his father in law’s experienced while stationed at Pearl Harbor.  It’s a great read!

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The Truth of the Matter

The times we are living in sure are interesting, eh? One the one hand we seem to be witnessing what was once the slow collapse of Western Civilization quicken its stride towards oblivion, not least of which is due to the pathetic inability of its elites to defend its existence and unquestionable virtue.  A quick glance of the day’s headlines only exacerbates this doomsday thinking and feeling that it’s too late to turn back.  We are screwed.

On the other hand, just looking back at what our young nation has been through these past 250 years and the gloomy perspective shifts more to one of endurance and strength. Just the Civil War alone, a brutal, bloody battle among brothers that ripped the country apart and killed 2% of the population, should cause a pause in our modern day despair and reflection on whether things today are really so bad.

Throw in 2 World Wars, The Holocaust, a nationwide financial collapse, the Vietnam War, which saw the deaths of 60,000+ Americans and the explosion of violent cultural struggles, race wars, the assassination of a president and the horrors of 9/11 and the thought that our country has survived many tough times and that today’s issue are mild in comparison comes to mind.

Yet, today’s world is different in one very important, perhaps the most important, way.  Yes, we are not enduring a World War or daily riots and there is no Hitler amongst us, no matter how much the Trump deranged press and many Democrats wish to taint our president with the label.

What’s different is that we no longer agree on what is true.  Commonly accepted beliefs that most people shared from not very long ago, have turned in to “personal truth”, subject to how a someone feels about how things are or ought to be. If I feel strongly identified to being a giraffe, than I am one and if you tell me otherwise you are a hater that needs to get with the times.  And what do you have against giraffes anyway?

That’s really what it comes down to in all the hot debates of the day. Pick any issue, Trump’s impeachment, the tearing down of historical statues, climate change, sexual harassment, gun control, etc… and have a discussion about it with someone from the other side and you’ll soon see that their truth is vastly different than yours.

A lot of this has to do with the corrupt media and the outright lack of shame our political leaders have about lying to our faces on a daily basis.  But there’s more to it than that too.  This drifting away from truth is sliding us rights towards an ugly anarchy and thus I think some thoughts of dismay and doom are appropriate.  At the very least we should be more aware of what’s happening and encouraged to speak out about it.

Two recent blog posts by writers with much more knowledge than myself dive in to this subject pretty deep. I encourage you to read James Atticus Bowden’s, Why Political Compromise is Vanishingand Citizen Tom’s, You Have Redeemed me O Lord, God of Truth.

The two posts really compliment each other, you will not be disappointed.

 

Posted in identity politics, Political, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 26 Comments

Pilgrim Tough

I’m a descendant of Pilgrims that came over on the Mayflower. They survived a grueling 66 day journey, a brutal New England winter and much sickness to make it to the first Thanksgiving Day feast.

Me, I’m hunkered down at home, next to a space heater because it’s raining outside and temps have dropped in to the low 50’s.  Brrrrr, I would never have survived as a Pilgrim!

I’m very thankful my ancestors were made of tougher stuff  than me. Oh and here’s to modern day niceties like indoor heating too.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

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ABC’s Big, Fat Fail-Killing the Jeffrey Epstein Story

“There will come a day when the country realizes that Jeffrey Epstein was the most prolific pedophile this country has ever known”.  ~Brad Edwards, Attorney for Jeffrey Epstein’s sex abuse victims

Well, that day came but 3 years and many victims too late. As the leaked video below from Project Veritas shows, the Epstein scandal  could have come to light a few years ago but didn’t due to a corporate decision to not run the story.

Watch a very frustrated Amy Robach, Co-host of ABC’s 20/20, vent on a hot mic how the extensive piece she compiled on Jeffrey Epstein was killed because network bigwigs were afraid the rich and powerful client base who Epstein was accused of providing young girls to would hamper its ability to report on future major stories.

In other words, ABC put concerns over ratings above exposing a serial child rapist and bringing justice to his victims.

Some quotes from Ms. Robach”

“I’ve had this story for three years….(ABC) would not put it on the air”

“It was unbelievable……we had Clinton.  We had everything…..”

“We had her whole allegations about Prince Andrew….I got a little concerned about why I couldn’t get on.”

“There were a lot of men in those planes, a lot of men who visited that island, lot of powerful men who came in to that apartment…”

I highly recommend giving the video a watch, at least the first 1 1/2 minutes.  It will make your blood boil, but it’s also a timely reminder that the media does not care about women, nor children, nor  you or I for that matter or the betterment of this country.

It’s easy to see that ABC’s decision to suppress the story and it’s mealy mouthed defense of this was based entirely on not upsetting the wrong people, because God knows that might have jeopardized its access to members of the Royal Family and coverage of Prince William’s wedding.

It’s an absolutely disgusting state of affairs, but something to keep in mind the next time the county explodes over some political/cultural event and the news media jumps to cover it.  The people that run these outfits do not have our backs.

Posted in Political, Random Thoughts, Uncategorized, Women's Empowerment | Tagged , , , , | 20 Comments

18 Years Later

Some of you may have seen this video from last year but it’s well worth another watch.  It’s actual live audio from events of the day transcribed over video clips.  It’s painful to view, sad and heart wrenching but it’s a good reminder of how awful 9/11 was and why we must truly never forget.

I feel in many ways we have are living as if it never happened.  The unity this country experienced on 9/12 is completely shattered, worse than before and our view of the dangers of this world have again grown complacent and naive.  I fear for the future.

Never forget and teach your kids the same.

 

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California Dreamin’

Homeless Guy Bench

California’s three largest cities; San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Diego are all struggling with an enormous homelessness problem and the after effect is wreaking havoc among residents.

De facto tent cities, sidewalks crowded with human feces and hypodermic needles, garbage piled high in the streets, open drug use and aggressive pan handling have transformed large swaths of these formerly great cities in to mini 3rd world countries.

Whoops, almost forgot about the typhus epidemic due to excessive garbage pile ups and an accompanying rat population explosion.  Nothing says being a forward thinking, progressive city like a reoccurrence of mid-evil disease!

I would say the inmates are running the asylum except the word inmate is outlawed in California. Kinda joking but kinda not.  According to this Los Angeles Times article, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors recently submitted a proposal to scrap words like “felon” in favor of “returning resident” or “formerly incarcerated person.”

I kid you not.  The board’s reasoning is to sanitize language in the criminal justice system by using:

“…..people-first language — phrases that strip any objectification or pejorative descriptions for more neutral and positive descriptors. 

A parolee could be described as a person under supervision. Convict could be referred to as a “currently incarcerated person, while a juvenile offender or delinquent would be described as a young person impacted by the justice system.”

 I’m sorry, what?  A new city Poop Patrol department had to be created because your sidewalks are so overloaded with crap and you’re worried certain words may be offensive to convicts?  Just how did we get to this point?

In my opinion, California’s decision makers at all levels of state and local government have failed so miserably at fixing problems they themselves helped to create that their only way to save face was to legislate such problems out of existence.

Dealing with complex issues surrounding homelessness?  Well then, just provide free housing with no requirement to stop using drugs/alcohol, allow makeshift campsites to take over neighborhood parks and turn a blind eye to public defecation. Poof, homeless problem solved!

Overcrowded prison problem?  Enact a rule that turns what were once felonies in to misdemeanors.  Sure open drug use, car thefts, shoplifting and “smash and grab” crimes will spike, but the prison population will surely shrink.

And how to go about reducing the number of kids getting expelled from schools?  Why just swoop that magic legislative wand and enact Senate Bill 419 that prohibits expulsions in K-12 schools.  You’ll be amazed at how quickly those expulsion rates drop!

See how easy it is to solve tough, entrenched problems? How will California handle all this winning?  

So what is really going on here? Are California lawmakers following a purposeful directive that encourages people to escape accountability for their own bad behavior and increases chaos for the rest of us?

Or are they just incredibly myopic and stupid? My money is on the latter but it really doesn’t matter.  The sad, hard truth is that lives are being and will continue to be destroyed by nonsense like this.

If someone is repeatedly making poor life choices, whether it’s acting up in class, doing drugs, going to the bathroom in the streets, or shoplifting, you’re not doing them any favors by eliminating consequences for the bad behavior. You’re just providing a bigger shovel for them to make the hole they’re stuck in deeper and setting them up for failure down the road.

And it’s not just California either, this type of magical thinking occurs in legislative offices all over the country.  The stunning cowardice of politicians and their inability to tell people things that might upset them, has contributed greatly to the cultural divide (it’s their fault, not yours and if you elect me I will punish them) and further entrenched the victimhood mentality our aggrieved culture is saturated with.

The devastating consequences of all this cannot be over stated.  But hey, the idiots in charge get to crow about being problem solvers and virtue signal how compassionate they are.  No surprise there.

The really mystery, as I asked in California’s War On The Poor, is why do we citizens continually reelect these opportunistic morons?

 

 

Posted in identity politics, income inequality, Political, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | 51 Comments

The Freedom to be a Moron

One of the many beautiful things about living in America is the right to your opinion. Yes, I know political correctness abounds and there are those who wish to squelch other’s free speech, but for today anyway, we still enjoy an immense ability to think, say and write what we want.

With that in mind, I can’t really get too angry about Colin Kapernick’s being offended by the Betsy Ross Flag , nor Nike’s epic fail of actually taking his words to heart and pulling their new shoe which has her flag stitched on the heel.

I do wonder though if Kapernick spoke out during Barack Obama’s first inauguration during which Betsy Ross flags were on prominent display.  I somehow doubt it.  Perhaps he was not “woke” enough back then.

BR Flag Inauguration

Barack Obama Inauguration-Photo Credit: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Betsy_Ross_flag

 

This is America folks where people have the freedom to act like morons and we get the pleasure of ignoring them and buying shoes/attire elsewhere.  That’s how it works and I wouldn’t have it any other way-God bless the good ole USA!

Happy Independence Day!

For some interesting history on the Betsy Ross flag go here.

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Men of War

97 Year Old WWII Veteran Tom Rice Reenacting His D-Day Jump From 75 Years Ago

 

“One time we were outnumbered 4-to-1,” he said. “By God, we held on. We did a good job.”~Joseph Reilly, Private, 101st Airborne Division

75 years ago today a little over 13,000 American paratroopers of the 82nd and 101st Airborne Divisions jumped out of their airplanes and right in to history over the wind swept beaches and hills of Normandy.  This was the opening act for Operation Overlord, the invasion of German occupied Western France by Allied forces.

I imagine them floating listlessly in the dark morning air, German bullets whizzing by their heads.  What thoughts must have of come to mind? Will I die today? Will I kill someone? When did I last tell my wife I loved her?  Will I live to see our new baby girl?

Or perhaps none at all, just a grim determination to do the job assigned, which was to capture the town of Cherbourg and provide the Allies a port of supply, block enemy approaches to the U.S. amphibious landings at Utah Beach, capture causeway exits and establish river crossings.

It took 3 days of brutal fighting to successfully barrier up Utah Beach and by weeks end all the German strongpoints, although tenaciously defended, were defeated.

D-Day casualties for the 101st consisted of 182 killed, 557 wounded, and 501 missing. For the 82nd, it was 156 killed, 347 wounded, and 756 missing.  That was just for one day.

These men went way beyond just doing their job.  Courageous and strong, they relentlessly pushed forth under the most hellacious of circumstances until their mission was complete.  Without them the Allied Forces would never have won the Battle of Normandy and Hitler would not have been defeated.  Who knows where we would be now.

What motivates men like this? Love of country, the moral duty of defeating evil, the camaraderie of brotherhood among Soldiers? Probably all of these things, but the driving force was they were called to do a job and they did it.  Sounds simplistic but it’s not.  It speaks to a type of character that runs deep inside a person’s soul, one I fear perhaps we may be in short supply of today.

Over and over I’ve heard the same familiar quote from men that have fought in wars,  “We’re not the heroes, those guys there buried under the white crosses are.”

That’s what they say because that’s the type of men they are, humble of their own accomplishments and respectful to the fallen.  They are all heroes in my opinion, alive or dead.

colorcrossflag

For some context of what these men went through that fateful day along with brilliant pictures, check out Julie’s fabulous post on the subject.

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Uncertain Certainty

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Cross Between The Trees-Living Stones Church, Kona, HI

“But, first, remember, remember, remember the signs. Say them to yourself when you wake in the morning and when you lie down at night, and when you wake in the middle of the night. And whatever strange things may happen to you, let nothing turn your mind from following the signs. And secondly, I give you a warning. Here on the mountain I have spoken to you clearly: I will not often do so down in Narnia. Here on the mountain, the air is clear and your mind is clear; as you drop down into Narnia, the air will thicken. Take great care that it does not confuse your mind. And the signs which you have learned here will not look at all as you expect them to look, when you meet them there. That is why it is so important to know them by heart and pay no attention to appearances. Remember the signs and believe the signs. Nothing else matters.”

~ C.S. Lewis, The Chronicles of Narnia

The pastor at church this past Sunday touched on the above passage, which resonated with me.  God had been instructing me lately to be continually on the lookout for Him so this message to Remember the signs and believe the signs really struck a chord.

These past couple of weeks have been loaded with uncertainty and, honestly, some uncomfortable doubt about whether all things really do work together for the good of those that love Him.  A childhood friend’s cancer diagnosis and my own journey with a pending health scare has put life’s impermanent nature at the forefront and left me on unsteady ground.  Turning 50 recently hasn’t helped.

Needless to say it’s been a reflective time.  I feel more in tune with the present moment and empathetic towards people and their daily struggles.  I can see clearly the things that matter and the many things that don’t.  I grow closer to God even as I struggle against what He’s laid before me.    How frustrated He must be that I turn to Him during bad times as quickly as I turn away during good ones.

It’s easy to get upside down in situations like this and let hot emotions lead the way so I grasp on to promises whispered through the thick, heavy air.

Nothing will ever separate me from the love of God~Romans 8:38

He will never leave nor forsake me~Deuteronomy 31:8

His promise of peace will never be removed~Isaah 54:17

He will answer earnest prayers~John 15:7

Yes, remember the signs and believe the signs.  Nothing else matters.

Could I ask a small favor that you say a prayer for a good outcome for me as I go through some medical testing this Thursday morning?

Things should be ok, my doctor is just taking some extra precautions, but good wishes and prayers would be welcome.

***Quick update to let everyone know that my doctor called me personally to let me know the tests results were great and I couldn’t have asked for a better outcome.  Also the rare form of cancer my friend was diagnosed with has not spread and things are looking good.  Thank you all for your prayers and kind words.  And thank you especially to God, you are always so good!******

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When Kindness Kills

Black Widow

Female black widows attract prey by showing off their shiny, red hourglass markings. This lures their unfortunate victim directly in to her clutches, where it will soon be wrapped in mounds of silk before being injected with digestive enzymes that turn their insides to mush.  The spider then sucks the liquid out (gleefully, I like to imagine), leaving only a dead, hollowed out shell of what was once a living creation behind.

A person stamped with a victimhood mentality eventually becomes an empty shell too.  Except in this case it’s not the spider draining the life out of them, but Western society’s pathological need to be seen as compassionate and caring when tough love and common sense are required.  This in turn can cause them learned helplessness and  a continual reliance on other people and things in place of basic life skills.

The homeless crisis faced by many cities around the country is surely at the top of a long list of cultural issues effected by this dysfunction. This was brought to mind recently when I read this blog post by Chris Megison, President and CEO of Solutions For Change, a wonderful organization dedicated to ending family homelessness who I’ve blogged about before.

Chris uses the term symptom relief when discussing the Band-Aid approach federal and state governments have taken towards trying to solve homelessness.  In fact he doesn’t believe “solving” it is even part of the equation.  His words:

It is very important to understand that the increase in homelessness and property crimes is happening by design, due to State of California’s legislative overreach that is handcuffing local cities.”

Chris is referring to something called Housing First, which fixates on providing housing for the homeless with no requirements that they stop drinking and/or doing drugs. This philosophy is poisonous according to Chris and because it’s permeated throughout the public sector some really bad policies and incentives have come about as he explains here:

“California’s homeless response system has done something that we believe is enormously dangerous. The state has systematized and operationalized codependency through a new design that provides taxpayer funded no-strings-attached drug housing for the homeless addict. The intervention they are using is a housing intervention with the misguided logic that the addict will decide, at some point, to get sober. The addict can now continue to use drugs in “free” government housing, commit property crimes to support their habit and have a place for other addicts to congregate

Sadly, the same public sector architects of this design have also decriminalized possession of drugs, even hard drugs like heroin and meth.  A person caught with 3 grams of heroin (30 uses) is considered to have “personal use” and let go.  Police officers are going on record all over California, saying that we are in full blown crisis caused by the confluence of multiple government policies that focus on the wrong thing; they focus almost entirely on symptoms.”

 Is it compassionate to provide free housing with no expectations that tenants behave like responsible human beings?  To release people caught with hard drugs because hey, they’re only harming themselves and who are we to judge anyway?  Or is it really just another way for politicians to look like they’re doing somethingwhen in fact they’re just making things worse?

And what about the homeless themselves, doesn’t this convey the message that they are incapable of overcoming their addictions and becoming productive members of society? That they are “victims” of forces beyond their control so let’s just give them housing and let them alone about their drugs so we can get back to our paper shuffling and say “see, problem solved!”?

The lure of being seen as compassionate is powerful and not in itself a bad thing.  When it becomes politicized and purely symbolic though it leads to greater evils than the initial problems being confronted.  In this case the devaluing of human beings and treating them as animals with no ability to help themselves.

This only propagates whatever dysfunction an already damaged population is dealing with, leaving a broken trail of carcasses ravaged by poverty, drug addiction and spiritual emptiness in its wake.

We need to rethink what we are doing to the most vulnerable among us.

For more information about the good work Solutions for Change is doing to empower people up and out of being homeless go here.

 

 

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