Monday, September 30, 2013

The Human Costs of a Government Shut Down

Many of my regular readers know that I lived in the D.C. area for many years; close to 20 in fact.  I recently moved back to my home state in New England.  For many months after first moving here I had been told many times by someone I had left the bubble and was experiencing the real world.  This discussion was mostly referring to the effects of the economy.

It isn't that I never knew that I lived in a bubble while in Northern Virginia.  For instance, I knew that finding a job in that little area of the world was much easier than many others around the country.  The unemployment rate in the D.C. area was only around 5% even when the rest of the country was well over 8%.  There were foreclosures, layoffs, and the like in the area; but they were able to absorb it better.  Most people got through it without a huge problem.  There are jobs available in the area, maybe not great paying jobs, but you can find something.  Not so much in the state I am in now.  Jobs, even just part-time, are hard to come by.  I went to a very large mall on Friday evening and the place was dead.  That isn't the case at Tyson's Mall just outside of D.C., the place was almost always busy.

So I have kind of a unique perspective on the looming government shut down.  I am conservative and I want to see Obamacare repealed.  I want to see government spending under control, I want to see waste done away with.  But I also know the real human side to a government shut down and how it will affect everyday people.  Many of these people don't work for the government.  They work for private contractors and they clean the floors at the Smithsonian's.  I don't know how much they make, but I doubt it is in the range of six figures.  They also work for the cafe's that are around the government buildings.  I know that not everyone that works on the hill makes a big salary.  Many of the people who work on the Hill are young, passionate people who make just enough to live on and enjoy a few things around the D.C. area, but not much more.  Now they will get back pay if the government shuts down.  Or at least that has been the pattern in the past, although there is no law that states that has to happen.  That will take an act of congress.

About 50% of the Department of Defense are civilian employees who work for government contractors.  They get no back pay, unless of course it was the contracts to start with.  I know many government contractors and not one of them told me that such a provision exists in their contracts.  They will get no back pay, and remember, they are already living on shortened hours due to sequestration.

I also know that there are hot dog vendors that have nothing to do with the government except that a big part of their business depends on people who do.  Babysitters, dog walkers, restaurant staff, hotel staff, vendors who sell T-shirts and trinkets.  There are National Parks all over the country that have campgrounds and hotels that depend on the traffic that those parks bring.  There are also federal buildings all over the country, not just in D.C., the businesses that surround those buildings will feel exactly the same thing, possibly on a smaller scale.
I am all for making cuts to the government, but I am also very much aware that those cuts have to be done in a methodical way.  We can't just wake up tomorrow and say shut it all down and act like that won't have a rippling effect to people who are just like you and me, struggling to make ends meet.

This is a failure of both parties.  These people knew when these dates were coming, and instead of working to avoid these issues, they forge ahead in order to score cheap political points that ends up hurting everyday people.  Many of which who pay no attention to politics, more than likely some of which don't even bother to vote.  They are just living their lives.

The GOP may be able to get a one year delay on the individual mandate.  I am not holding my breath on it, but it is in the realm of possibility.  To me they should be going after spending cuts, because at the end of the day Obamacare isn't going anywhere until it is fully repealed.  That ain't happening until you have a congress that is willing to pass it and a president that is willing to sign it.  The earliest that will happen is in January of 17.
My point is say we close the government down for say a month trying to force Obama to give, at best, a one year delay on the mandate, just remember, that there will be people who won't be able to pay their rent or their credit card bills.  The restaurants and delis that depend on the government employees to stay open may end up closing if they can't make up the income from another area.  Wait staff at these restaurants won't make their normal salaries or could potentially lose their jobs.

It is very easy to say that the average person won't even know that the government shut down when you aren't one of these people.  When it isn't your livelihood that it is at stake.  For those that think it is worth it to prove a point about Obamacare, that is primarily mandatory spending by the way, just think of those people.  If you are in the D.C. area, put your money where your mouth is and go and visit some of these businesses, they will need it.
Call me a Rino if you will, but as I said, I have a unique perspective from living and working in the D.C. area for so long.  I have a Facebook friend who is a government contractor, she just got back to work after having a baby.  She is vet who served her country and pays hers taxes.  She is also a person who doesn't have a great deal of money in the pot to pay her bills during a long shut down, and she isn't alone.   There will be a human cost to this shut down.  Even if you agree with it, don't ignore that these people exist.  Just remember, these people are no different from you and me, everyday people who work hard and are getting a raw deal by our very dysfunctional government.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Quote of the Day - Mark Marano Edition

‘The latest IPCC report has truly sunk to level of hilarious incoherence.  It is quite amazing to see the contortions the IPCC has to go through in order to keep the international climate agenda going’
In case you were wondering, Mark Marano is a climate scientist at MIT.   Germany, the U.S. and Belgium pressured the U.N. to downplay the past 15 years of warming and the increase of the ice in Antartica.  We wouldn't that to get out now would we?

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Barilla Pasta and The Sheeple

Oh my the outrage.  The CEO of Barilla pasta said this:
"If (gay people) like our pasta and our communication, they can eat it. If they do not like it, if they do not like what we say, they can eat a different one."
Due to this people are calling for a world-wide boycott.  No where did this man say that gay people are bad.  He said that in their advertising they use traditional families.  Now I worked in the fundraising/marketing field for more than a decade.  While much of what I did was for politicians, the idea behind is pretty much the same.  You speak to your audience.  You speak to the people who are the most likely to buy your product.  Companies spend millions upon millions doing market research.  They know who their main customer base is.  If the majority of people they are selling to are soccer moms, that is who they are going to go after in the large sums of money they spend on advertising.  

I remember once looking over the marketing plan for Joan and David shoes.  See I have a real weakness for shoes and Joan and David are some of my favorites.  They aren't overly expensive yet they are good quality and have the style that I prefer.  The listing that they had as their main customer base fit me to a tee, right down to the Volvo.  Yes they knew the type of car many of their shoppers prefer.  

But no, this isn't good enough for the gay agenda activists.  This was a gotcha question, not unlike what was done to Chick-Fil-A.  Of course asking a Christian conservative about gay marriage was going to come out the way it did.  Christian conservatives don't believe in gay marriage.  That shouldn't be a surprise.  The real question is does Barilla discriminate in their hiring practices?  The answer is likely the same as it is at Chick-Fil-A, no.  

The idea of tolerance is supposed to mean that all accept others belief systems.  Of course that doesn't happen with the gay agenda.  You must agree or you are a bigot, a homophobe, a hater.  Not only do you have to agree, you have to advertise a certain way.  You must use gay couples in your tv and magazine advertising, or you are a hater that doesn't deserve to stay in business.  Lets see gay people make up less than 10% of society worldwide.  The vast majority of people around the world aren't gay.  Of course companies are going to go after the main customer base.  Their job is make a profit, not to handhold a small segment of society to prove how open-minded and tolerant they are.  

What I find so funny about all this is that all the people who are outraged, most of which are heterosexuals, never bother to look into why the question was asked?  Could it be to further an agenda?  No, that couldn't be it.  Stop being sheeple and following along simply because someone with one is asking you to.  How many of these people who are so outraged even realized until a few days ago that gay couples weren't being used in their commercials?  Did you even think about it?  Did you actually care?  Did you actually hear what the man said as opposed to the headlines?  

Barilla Pasta hates gays!!!  Barilla Pasta said they don't want gay people to eat their pasta!!!!!  

No such thing was said.  But for the sheeple that matters none.  Just follow along and close your eyes to the fact that you are being manipulated.  It is easy, as long as you don't use your brain and research for yourself.  

Friday, September 27, 2013

Mo Leaves the Mound for the Last Time - Video

A great career is now over.  I am not a huge baseball fan, matter of fact, I don't really like it at all; but I even I knew who he was and what he was able to accomplish over his long and storied career.  Good luck with the rest of your life.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Quote of the Day - Ken Cuccinelli Edition Part 2

"If my opponent is elected governor, we'll have to change the state motto from 'Sic Semper Tyrannis' to 'Quid Pro Quo.'"
Ken Cuccinelli at the debate between he and Terry McAuliffe  

Extreme Parenting Part 6

A mother in inner city Kansas City made a heart wrenching choice.  An elderly man who is confined to wheelchair was robbed in his home.  He answered the door and was confronted by young man pointing a gun to his head.  He made no effort to resist and the thugs entered his home and robbed him.

This being the second time that this happened to him, he had set up a video camera.  The entire episode was caught on camera and released to the public.  A mom saw her son being the gang leader in this disgraceful event.  She not only confronted her son, she marched him down to the police department and turned him.

It was the right thing to do, but that doesn't mean it was easy.  It takes a special kind of person to realize that even though you are more than likely putting your child in a position to do time in prison allowing them to get away with that kind of behavior is worse.  Her son is 18 years old.  But obviously he has no respect for private property, he has no respect for the elderly, he has no respect for people who have served our country *the victim is a vet*, he has no respect for himself.  She took it into her own hands to say to her son that this behavior is not acceptable and will not be tolerated by her or by society.

You also have to remember that cooperating with the police is not looked upon as something customary in the inner cities.  So it makes what she did even more noteworthy.  But I think this mom knew her child was out of control and fixing what is wrong is beyond her control.  I am also sure that she was worried he was on a path to end up dead, possibly in a shoot out with the police.

Kudos to this mom for doing the right thing.  I am sure her heart is breaking.

You can watch a news report here.  

Monday, September 23, 2013

VA Governor Debate This Wednesday

The local NBC stations will be covering this debate live.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Extreme Parenting Part 5

This comes from a listing on E-Bay.  A mother in Australia caught her daughter having a sleep-over with an older young man.  This coming shortly after buying her and girlfriends four tickets to a concert.  She decided to sell the tickets.  Here is the listing:
"THIS AUCTION IS FOR ALL 4 ONE DIRECTION TICKETS IN SYDNEY OCTOBER 25th. You can thank my daughters self righteous and lippy attitude for their sale. See sweety? And you thought I was bluffing. I hope the scowl on your b----- little friends faces when you tell them that your dad and i revoked the gift we were giving you all reminds you that your PARENTS are the ones that deserve love and respect more than anyone. And your silly little pack mentality of taking your parents for fools is one sadly mistaken. Anyhow. Your loss someone else's gain who deserves them! THE TICKETS ARE SEATED IN ROW O section 57. REMEMBER AUCTION IS FOR ALL 4 TICKETS and will be sent registered post.
...OH YOUR FRIENDS THOUGHT THAT A FEW PRANKS CALLS WOULD PUT ME OFF SELLING THE GIFT WE BOUGHT FOR THEM for YOUR BIRTHDAY because YOU all LIED to us about sleep overs so you could hang like little trollops at an older guys HOUSE????? Pffft!! I find it HIGHLY amusing that you girls think you invented this stuff. Tricks like this on OUR parents is how HALF of you were conceived .....And why a lot of your friends DONT have an address to send that Fathers day card to!!! I'm not your friend. I'm your MOTHER. And I am here to give you the boundaries that YOU NEED to become a functional responsible adult. You may hate me now..... But I don't care. Its my job to raise a responsible adult..not nuture bad habits in my teen age child."
Publically calling your child a trollop?  I would never do this to my child.  Never.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Hey I Know My Kid Broke the Law, But that Doesn't Mean They Should Face Any Punishment - Parents Threaten Lawsuits over Their Child's Illegal Behavior

Brian Holloway, former NFL player and father of eight, has a vacation home in New York State.  While at his home in Florida his 19 year-old son tells him about some pictures and things he is seeing on twitter.  They were about an out of control party being held in the vacation house.  Now these kids didn't have permission to be there, they broke in and decided to throw a big party.  Items have been stolen, they cleaned out his house of the alcohol he had in the home, they urinated on his carpeting, they spray painted his walls, destroyed hardwood flooring, and left drug paraphernalia on the property.

Brian was a long ways away trying to get a hold of the local sheriff to get these freeloaders out his home.  The sheriff did come and break up the party, which by the way they originally planned on staying for the Labor Day weekend.  The house has sustained thousands of dollars worth of damage and a yet to be determined amount loss due to stolen property.  Yet oddly, the sheriff was unable to make even one arrest.   I guess those kids were fast.  They ran and hid or something.

Brian hasn't taken this lying down.  He has reprinted all the tweets he could find that came from his home during this drunken home invasion.  What do the parents of these young adults do?  They threaten to sue.  That's right.  We wouldn't want little Suzy or Johnny to be publicly humiliated now would we?  After all, most of them are high school students getting ready to fill out applications for college.  How dare someone talk about how out of control their child is?

Now Brian hasn't accused anyone of anything.  He has only put out there tweets that these kids themselves put out on social media.  One tweet said:
yeah mom went to a party and got drunk but hey atleast I'm not a meth addict"
Emily's mom must be so proud.

Dear Maddie was upset that the party got busted, it would have been so much bigger.  Oh no, she missed out on more fun.  That is lawsuit worthy isn't it?  Another young man was glad that his parents don't care what he does.  Apparently not.

Only one parent, count it, one, showed up with their child to help clean up the mess.

We are more and more becoming a society that care nothing for personal property or the rights of the others.  It is me, me, and me that matters.  While it is understandable that kids that age don't get how hard it is to earn the money to afford a home, they should at the very least have the understand that breaking into someone's home is wrong.  That peeing on the carpet is wrong.  That spraying painting on a the wall is wrong.  Do these young adults live in zoo where anything goes?  Would they treat their parents home in this fashion?

But what is worse is the seeming lack of remorse shown by the parents.  It seems that their little brats getting into college is a more desirable thing rather than teaching their kids a sense of responsibility.  Actually showing their children that actions have consequences.  Very real consequences in this case.  That is a lesson that no college can teach these brats.  That is the lesson that the parents alone are in charge of.  But no, they will use our legal system to bash the victim and teach their kids that hey they are special, it was just one stupid mistake.  No biggie.  Move along, nothing to see here.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Quote of the Day - Terry McAuliffe Edition

 "I am not going to read every bill when I’m governor. I’m going to hire people to read them for me."
Well at least he is honest about his laziness and lack of seriousness of the job.   

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Happy Constitution Day

Read it, learn it, live it.

Because it matters.  If you don't know what your rights are, you don't know when they are being taken away from you.  Make no mistake, they are being taken away.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Amsterdam's "Scum Village"

Amsterdam has set up a housing complex that is being dubbed "Scum Village".  It is made out of refurbished shipping containers and was constructed to hold people who exhibit "anti-social" behavior, and is supervised "police supervised".
The mayor of Amsterdam, Eberhard E. van der Laan says:
"The family has many years of serious nuisance, and has a history of vandalism, noise, and threats. If other solutions do not work, it must be the culprit that moves, not the other families around them."
While that sounds good on the surface, one has to wonder what constitutes anti-social behavior and who exactly it is that gets to decide when that is exhibited and what it takes to put into this special "housing".

Isn't this Hilteresque?

The first residents of this village are members of the Dimitrov family, part of the famed Roma Gypsies, long considered a group of people who suffer persecution.  While others tells tales of them being nothing but a bunch of grifters.  They were a group that was targeted for extermination by the Nazi's during World War II.  Approximately 3,000 were killed in concentration camps.

Another problem with this bright idea is that it will just create an environment of groups of people who are "anti-social" all in one place.  Won't that create a larger problem?  I mean it only makes sense that what one considers anti-social isn't going to be what another will term the same way.  You are just going to end up with a large group of people who have already proven to be hard to live near.  Won't that create more crime and larger problems?  It seems they are setting themselves up for an entire area of undesirable people living together and causing all kinds of problems to each other as well and anyone that has the misfortune of living any near that place.

I find it chilling that this is happening in 2013 in a city as modern as Amsterdam.  It seems that humanity is moving backwards instead of forwards and we have not learned from our mistakes.  I guess history has taught us nothing.
Government over-reach is alive and well.  So much for a city and a country that prides itself on human rights.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Quote of the Day - Steven Colbert Edition

The United States has no choice but to attack Syria because dictator Bachar Assad is killing his own people with chemical weapons.  Before he was just killing them with bullets, but if America cared about shooting people we would be invading Chicago.  
Hard to argue his point.  Somehow people killed with chemical weapons are more dead than those Assad is shooting.  

Middle School Children Assigned a Writing Assignment - Write a Good-Bye Letter to One Loved One from Twin Towers on 9/11

A middle school teacher asked the students to pretend that they were on one of the hi-jacked planes or in the Twin Towers on 9/11 and to write one letter to say good-bye as a homework assignment to mark the anniversary of 9/11.   These kids are in the seventh grade, that would roughly put them about 11 or 12.  9/11 happened before most of these children were born.  

There is an uproar about the assignment.  Many feel that this is very inappropriate and outright ghoulish.  I happen to disagree.  I think this is a good assignment.  One of the things that I feel is vital in education is teaching how to think, not what to think.  This is a way to bring the finality of that tragic event to the people who were killed that day.  As a person who is lets just say older than these kids, I remember clearly that day.  I remember hearing the recordings of calls made from inside the building as well as the planes.  Betty Ong calling the airline emergency number talking about the hijackers and how low the plane was flying.  Simply heartbreaking.  Or the calls from flight 93, ending with "Lets Roll" as the passengers tried to stop the plane from hitting another building, likely the U.S. Capitol or an attempt at the White House.  Simply heroic.  

I also believe that empathy is sincerely lacking in our society today.  We don't put as much value on human life as we should.  I think this teaches these kids to think about that.  To look at their loved ones and come to the realization that on that day, thousands of people knew they were never going to see those people again.  One of the most indelible images of 9/11 are those of the jumpers.  Imagine what those people were thinking while falling to their deaths.  

Now, I have spent the majority of my life living outside of NYC and Washington D.C., so 9/11 is very personal to me.  I know people who were first responders, who made it out of those buildings, and sadly I knew someone who died, and I know others who lost a close loved one that fateful day.  But, these kids don't have that connection.  This assignment may help bring those feelings alive to these students.  The further we get away from that day, the harder it will be to really understand what happened and the shock that people in this country felt.  

Again, since I have lived in the areas most directly affected by that day, I look at from that perspective.  These are children from Texas.  Now, as strange as this sounds, I remember having a conversation with a work colleague shortly after the event.  He worked in outside of Las Vegas, and I remember him saying something all the lines of he could only imagine how hard it was for people like me who lived in the D.C. area.  His connection to the event wasn't what mine was.  I found it to be an odd comment at the time and obviously it really struck me since I remember that conversation all these years later.  

Not all parents are upset about this assignment.  One mother read the letter after her daughter went to bed.  The letter was addressed to her.  She said that she cried and cried after reading it and brought her daughter into her bed to sleep with her that night.  Her words "mission accomplished".  

I don't think this would be assignment that would go over well in the New York City area as it way too fresh for most of the people who live in this area.  The museum isn't open, the new tower is not yet finished, New Yorker's still live with the idea that being in that city automatically puts a target on their backs.  But do people who live in smaller towns in more rural areas think about that in the same way?  I don't think that they do.  So trying to get that to come alive for younger students in those areas must be a very difficult task.  I think this teacher did that.  These children had to really think about what it would be like to be in a building that was on fire from jet fuel knowing that they were never going home again.  They were never going to see their loved ones again.  Of course you can never fully accomplish that, but it at least got them thinking about it.  

That is what I expect from teachers, get these kids to think.  Not what they should be thinking.  

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Freedom Tower Today

Well, not today.  But I took this about six weeks ago.  It really is shameful it has taken this long to replace the Twin Towers.

Project 2996 - Sharon Carver Originally Posted 9-11-10

On September 11, 2001 Sharon Carver was sitting in her office at the Pentagon when a hijacked plane hit the building killing her.  She was only 38 years old.  She was civillian accountant for the Army while working towards her master's degree in accounting.  She lived with her family in Waldorf, MD.  The days after the attack her nephew was interviewed by the local news, they were still holding out hope that she survived the attack. One of many hearbreaking scences that played out for days after the attack.  

A life that was cut too short.  A life that will not include grandchildren or growing old.  A life that will no longer include the annual family vacations.  She was days back from a family outing to Disney World. A family is now missing a loving daughter, sister, and aunt.  The Pentagon is missing a dedicated emloyee, and her friends are missing her personality, her humor, and that amazing smile of hers.  

Sharon believed in education and public service.  Traits that we should all aspire to.  She was dedicated to her family and her country.  

"You are truly missed. I remember your kind and warm spirit. You brightened the halls of Anacostia with your smile."

To Sharon's family, there are no words to express our sympathies to you.  May God Bless you and know that Sharon is watching over you and smiling.

Project 2996 John Frederick Rhodes - Our Pledge to You Originally Posted 9-11-09

9.11.01 - A Fateful Day in the Life of America

Early Tuesday morning on 9.11.01 John "Jack" Rhodes made his way from Howell, NJ to the offices of AON Corporation on the 92nd floor of 2 World Trade Center. It was a beautiful morning in New York City. The summerhumidity had come to end, but the chill of the fall had yet to set in. There was barely a cloud in the sky.

The beauty of that morning did not last long for New Yorkers. Shortly before 9 am, the first of two planes crashed into The World Trade Center. The innocence of our beliefs that our shores protected us was shattered. Within just a few short hours, four planes were hijacked, crashed into three buildings, a field in Pennsylvania, and both towerscollapsed and the Pentagon was still burning. 2996 innocent people were brutally murdered. More than 200 from AON alone. America had been attacked.

John "Jack" Frederick Rhodes was among the dead. Jack was among other things, a husband and father. He was man who was described as a person who loved life and loved his family. His life was cut short at the age of 57. He still had so much life yet to live. He was not able to welcome the new family members over the past eight years. His plans for retirement with his lovely wife Linda will not happen. His daughter no longer has her daddy; and every girl needs her daddy. No matter what age she is.

In the past eight years your family has found a way to move on. To smile and laugh again. To remember your happy times and to hold the sweet memories close without feeling the overwhelming loss of your senseless murder. Just as you would want them to do.

Jack, we want to make a pledge to your memory. We will never forget the sacrifice that you made. We will honor your loss and we will honor your family by doing everything that we can to protect all Americans moving forward. Our pledge to you is that we will do everything within our power to make sure that no other person loses his life to a twisted and dangerous sense of God's will, and no other families will feel the pain that yours has experienced.

Rest in Peace Mr. Rhodes. While you cannot wrap your arms around your family, we will. Our love and support goes to your family not just today, but always.

Photo of the Day - Marine Salutes Bikers Entering DC to Honor Victims of 9/11

Monday, September 9, 2013

Liberal Logic - Susan Rice and Syria Edition

So the administration is on a full court press right now trying to change hearts and minds about Syria.  So, in thier infinite wisdom they have decided to send none other than Susan Rice out to do it.  You remember Susan Rice don't you? The woman who went on five different Sunday talk shows to discuss how Benghazi and the death of four Americans at an oupost there was due to YouTube video, even after they knew full well it was a terrorist attack.

You can't make this stuff up.  Truly.

Friday, September 6, 2013

The Shaming of Mrs. Hall

I came across this blog post a few days ago and was working on a write-up about it.  Mrs. Hall is mom and she wrote an open letter to young women about the selfies that they post on social media in different stages of undress.  I never got around to hitting publish on it.  I am glad that I didn't because of the storm that this has caused.

As usual feminists have taken a disliking to Mrs. Hall and her words.  She is slut shaming and blaming the victim for any potential sexual abuse that may come into their lives.   Now Mrs. Hall did not such thing.  Her advice was simply that maybe teenage girls should be more aware of the dangers of social media and putting half-naked pictures of yourself isn't a good idea.

The thing that I never understood about the feminist movement is that they claim that they don't want to be treated like a sex object they then cry foul when you point out that showing your boobs to complete strangers is exactly what makes you a sexual object to some.

From Jezebel:
"Respect everyone regardless of their gender/sexuality/appearance," she might've said. "Don't worry! It's okay if you have sexual feelings! You're a sexual being! Girls are too. That doesn't mean you can treat them like objects. You and you alone are responsible for your thoughts and actions. Get over this Madonna-whore complex while you still can."
Now what she actually said was:
I think the boys notice other things. For one, it appears that you are not wearing a bra.
I get it – you’re in your room, so you’re heading to bed, right? But then I can’t help but notice the red carpet pose, the extra-arched back, and the sultry pout.  What’s up? None of these positions is one I naturally assume before sleep, this I know.
She was commenting on how these young women are posing into positions that make them look like a sexual object in various stages of undress.

Teaching your daughters to have some modesty is not slut shaming nor is it remotely close to saying they are responsible if they happen to get raped.  It is saying to them that the most important thing that they have is themselves.  It has value and that value is incalculable.  There is no monetary thing that can replace your body, your self-respect, your emotions, and everything else that makes you human.

Now I have always said that we teach our daughters to be careful when they are out at parties where others are drinking.  That behavior can put you in danger.  It doesn't mean that you deserve what happens to you, it means why put yourself in that position when it can be so easily avoided?  It is far less likely that young men will be raped.  But that doesn't mean we don't tell our sons that they should not be in those positions either.  We would should be teaching all of our children that their actions have consequences.

I have been thinking about some posts I have done in the past, the lawsuit filed by Yale students about sexual misconduct that occurred at an off campus Naked Party where people were drinking heavily.  Knock me over with a feather, I am shocked, shocked I say to hear that there was sexual misconduct going on.  That doesn't mean that the young men involved should get a pass.  If they committed a crime they should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.  But I would use this story as a teachable moment to young women and explain that when you are in this environment and you are drinking, bad things may happen to you.  Avoid the whole thing by not going to a naked party.  I am not saying  they deserved to be raped and/or assaulted.  Young adults, drinking, and sex is not a really good combination.

But of course the feminazi's of the world turned this into you are tempting my son to be unpure.  What she was actually trying to get across to these girls is if you don't want to be treated like a sexual object, don't act like one.  We are all human and sex and sexual feelings is part of our humanity.  Women and men think differently.  We just do.  Those different ways of reacting and thinking sometimes lead us to not understand the intentions of others.   This harkens me back to post about the New York Times article on Penn State and the Hook Up Culture.  A young women in that article flat-out said that if she started to sober up a little and realized she didn't want to have sex, she would just drop to her knees and open her mouth to get it over with.  Is that rape?  No, it isn't.  It is a young woman who made a series of bad choices that ended up with her on knees to gracefully find a way out of sex after a night of drinking.

These are the types of things that Mrs. Hall is trying to warn young women about.  You make these choices, thinking they are innocent and wont' cause any harm, and then find yourself in a dorm room on your knees performing oral sex on a man that you don't care about at all.  That isn't empowerment young ladies.  You have been used for sex.  That is exactly what makes men look at you as a sexual object.  No one is saying stay a virgin until you get married.  Or at least I am not.  That is an individual choice that all of must make for our own reasons.  What people like myself and Mrs. Hall are saying is that if you act a certain way, don't be shocked when you get treated that way.  It shouldn't be a surprise.

Here is a funny example of what Mrs. Hall was discussing.  Please note, I don't know how serious the injuries to the young woman was.  I hope that since the video was posted she suffered only minor burns.  But if you look closely you will see a bottle and shot glass on the table.  Someone put on that video camera.  Someone posted that video.  Please dont' tell me that young woman didn't wanted to be looked at as sexy, as someone you may want to hang with, dance with, most likely have sex with.  No one else made her an object except for herself.  This is what Mrs. Hall is trying to warn teenage girls about.

Syria, Just Say No

Many on the right are being called hypocrites for supporting Iraq under President Bush, but not supporting President Obama about Syria.  There is some truth to that.  Just as there was Bush Derangement Syndrome, Obama Derangement Syndrome exists as well.  The problem is that both sides are being hypocritical about it.  Barbara Boxer and President Obama were both very loud in their disagreement about going into Iraq.  Hussein used chemical weapons on the Kurds.  Those people are just as dead.  But the outrage was totally different, another party had The White House when that happened.  So needless to say politicians are doing what they do, playing politics.

The American citizens are the ones that are left to wonder what is really going on,  We obviously can't trust the politicians to do what is right for the country because they are busy being just that and playing partisan party games.  We don't get to see the intelligence.  We only get parts of the story.  So we are left to wonder what is true, what the real threats are, was it Assad that really used the WMD's or was it the resistance making it look like Assad did it to draw international outrage?

Now, the UN is feckless and useless.  I have known that for years.  Russia and China could care less and for whatever reason they feel it is in their best interests to vote no at any security council meeting that could put useless sanctions on the Assad regime or send in peace keepers, or weapons inspectors, or whatever useless thing that they would do.  So as usual the world is looking to the U.S. to solve the problems.
Well you know what, just say no.  I am sick to death of the U.S. getting forced into handling these things when all we get in return is blame and more hatred from the Muslim world.  I am not even going to get into the costs of this, because human rights shouldn't be looked at in dollars and cents.

France is all too willing to say hey we will help you out U.S.  I am sure they are willing to send about five troops and say that they are helping to protect human rights.  As soon as it gets messy they will turn tail and run as long as they know the U.S. is there.

The Muslim world has told us over and over again we need to mind our business and stop telling them how to live their lives.  Well Arab League stand up and handle your darn problems then and leave us out of it.  The Saudi's have a military that includes an airforce, let them go drop some bombs on Assad.

It will be the same old song and dance.  The U.S. bullies trying to tell the rest of the world what to do.  You know what, screw you and the camel you rode in on.  Take care of your own damn problems for once in your lives.
I have come to the very sad conclusion that for whatever reasons, the Middle East and the Muslim world is not ready for "freedom".  Look at Iraq.  After all the blood, sweat, tears, treasure, and lives we gave to the citizens of that country to give them a chance to choose their own destiny they are on the brink of a civil war.  We gave that country close to ten years to get their s*&t together and form the infrastructure necessary to rule themselves.  It is being thrown all away based on century old vendettas and tribal nonsense.  You want to stay in the dark ages, go ahead.  I am through caring about your problems.

Now I would really respect President Obama if he got up and said some of this.  Tell France, go ahead, you handle this one.  Tell the Arab League, you want us to butt out of your business, OK, take care of it.  Remove Assad, by any means that you see fit.  But that won't happen.  France would run if we said that, and the Arab League is just as useless as the U.N.  is.  They talk a good game, but they are just as feckless.

Using chemical weapons on your own people is a crime against humanity.  It violates international law set into place after the first world war.  It is a tragedy.  I feel for the people of Syria, I really do.  But if we were smart, we them let be and sort it out for themselves.  There is no good outcome that is in the interests of the United States.  If Assad stays we get the status quo.  If he goes we end up with an equally, if not even more,  hostile government to its own people, Israel, and of course to us.  Why bother?

Obama would show true leadership if he just admits the truth.  The French are not willing to do what it really takes to stop Assad, the rest of the world is not even willing to give it lip service, and the Arab League isn't going to do anything except of course blame the U.S. when it goes bad.   Lets save everyone the time and the trouble.  If the leaders in the Middle East want to act like barbarians, let them.  Maybe they will finally kill themselves off.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Say a Little Prayer for Newest Member of the Blogosphere

Just a few short days ago The Left Coast Rebel became a daddy.  His little one came a little early and is presently in the NICU to get a little bigger.  The baby seems healthy, just a tad too small at the moment.  

Say a little prayer for the baby's time in the NICU and for the parents who will be worried sick until the day the little one arrives home.  

They NICU nurses are some of the most professional and best people on the planet and are no better allies when your little one is still finishing up their development.  

Welcome to the wonderful world of parenthood.  

It isn't up to me to say much in the way of details, but both Mommy and Daddy need some prayers for the little one as well as themselves as they go through this agonizing, yet amazing, ordeal.  
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