Monthly Archives: December 2012

Gen. H. Norman Schwarzkopf, August 22, 1934 – December 27, 2012…

In a nation seemingly scarce of true heroes these days, the passing of Gen. H. Norman Schwarzkopf conjures up images of a not so distant past for America. Simple recognition of right and wrong and an unwavering commitment to “duty, honor, and country” were most certainly the foundations of this man’s life.

We were truly enriched as a nation to have counted him among those who took up arms in our stead. And as some of us watch with anxiety, the declining health of President George HW Bush, it is increasingly difficult to see The United States with the depth of character and courage embodied in these great men going forward.

RIP “Stormin’ Norman”… Your dedication to this Republic is duly noted, and your place in history secure.

God please look after President Bush as he battles on…



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Sequestration 101…

alan-simpson-erskine-bowles_gi_topAs both sides debate the fiscal cliff right to the very edge of disaster, “We the People” are poised to absorb the blow of Washington’s inexcusable dysfunction. On the one hand, you have Speaker Boehner who just realized he will indeed be held to account by members of his own party for his lack of fortitude and leadership of recent. On the other hand, President Obama enjoys main stream media neutrality, (and even their support), while he chips (spends) away at what’s left of our fragile economy. We are truly on the brink as a nation.

With the election now behind us, we can see the Obama second term taking shape. For the record, while I vehemently disagree with the President’s ideological stance, I do admire Mr. Obama for his political courage. He simply and truthfully pushed a radical and un-Constitutional agenda on a largely complacent electorate, grievously compromised by revisionism and a lack of historical appreciation for our beloved Republic. He seized on the political moment, took the ball down field and is preparing to go in for the touchdown. Sadly, the loser in this critical play-off game will be The United States of America. I have a sickening feeling about the consequences of being right on this one.

Nevertheless, I think it’s important for folks to understand the simple basics of what is about to happen, and in comparative terms to their own lives.

Most credible experts agree that if sequestration is allowed to go forward, and taxes are allowed to go up on all Americans, the economy will contract approximately 3.5 percent. Now as the U.S. economy itself is only growing at an anemic rate of under 2 percent, and the nation is carrying over $16 Trillion in debt with a real unemployment number of about 9 percent, this is critical. Let’s try and look at this as if it were an average middle class family today. Your monthly bills are around $4000.00, but you’re only bringing in about $2900.00 since your spouse was laid off, and her benefits have long expired. (You’re also on the short list to be laid off in the coming year because your employer will not be able to cover his “Obamacare” costs and penalties, and will have to downsize his workforce). You’re borrowing additional money to make up the difference and pay the interest on your credit. Your “projected income” over the next ten years will not keep up so you have to borrow even more money, expanding your debt profile by amounts you cannot account for without cutting your expenses, changing your spending habits “or” borrowing even more money. For the average family, this will eventually lead you to the point where no one will lend you any more money because they know you cannot possibly pay it back, (and you can’t simply print more). Are you following me?? You will now be forced to cut back in ways that you could never have imagined. Your quality of life will be dramatically altered as you may very well be forced into bankruptcy and your credit rating will be destroyed. You will likely lose your home and your car to foreclosure and/or repossession, and your wages may be garnished as debt collectors come for what little you have left. I know that you all are beginning to see this in the appropriate context. Now what the heck do you think it means for our country? What it means is this “cliff” is more like a black hole from which we may never return, but with one major difference for the federal government. They enjoy a luxury you and I do not, the power to tax until the well runs dry to correct the short-fall, ala France, Greece and Spain and their crippling tax rates.

Now we can debate all day about why both parties have politicized the argument in the manner they have, and many a short-sighted partisan fool will do just that. But it will not change the fact that our country’s economy is a mere shadow of what it was. And it certainly won’t change the fact that our elected officials at every level have screwed us to the point where they themselves have now thrown up their hands in utter frustration for lack of ideas or an appropriate and non-political solution.

Ya know, I remember reading the Erskine/Bowles report and listening to them talking about how their recommendations would be painful on all levels, and that was if we adopted those recommendations. The fact that President Obama and Congress have chosen to ignore them, leaves me to wonder if our economic wounds are now fatal.

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“Here’s fourteen bucks, and I’ll see ya’ at the polls”…

minimum_wage(1)Apparently my home state is among those that will raise the minimum wage come 1/1. Across the country there are a number of states which will do the same. But Rhode Island is a great example of the “wrong headedness” which dominates what I like to call the “Obama political landscape” these days.

Let’s put aside for a moment, the idea that minimum wage positions are not meant to be permanent or what many would call “living wage”, but rather starter or entry-level positions, which is what my dad taught me and what I believe to this day. And let’s also put aside the predictable politics of the Left as they fish for support among the uniformed/brainwashed. I would just like to know how in the world an extra $14.00 per week is going to make a significant difference in someone’s, or some family’s bottom line. Now firstly, save that Barrington rich guy stupidity. I’ve seen my share of hard times, and I don’t need a life lesson from any misguided “occupy type” or Progressive sycophant. But in a state legendary for its inhospitable business climate, excruciating tax burdens, and regional cost of living disparities, one would think our elected officials would be hard at work on a more substantial and “maybe even” long term approach.  Alas, Rhode Island will now make it even harder for small business out ahead of “Obamacare”. Moreover, when we hear our Rhode Island Delegation to Washington talk about jobs, one has to ask why in the world you would take away what little incentive there is left for companies to hire. And why in the world would you incentivize those companies to do more with “less” people.

In the face of such dire economic circumstances, Rhode Island offers the same tired and ineffective foolishness. “Here’s fourteen bucks, and I’ll see ya at the polls”…

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I will see you on the field in 2013…

untitled… As we attempt to take stock of Christmas 2012, there is obvious angst in America, and with good reason. I will be honest and tell you, I’m going to take a page from Bill O’Reilly’s book, and be “much tougher on the opposition this year”. For too long many of us have given a pass to those whose intentions we know to be anything but honorable, both in the political and news media arena. The truth and the facts have been watered down to accommodate a very vocal, disingenuous and agenda driven minority. Our heritage and culture are in danger of extinction, and our future is in question because we allow the argument to be framed as the enemies of freedom would have it. Our children will not live in their grandparents United States, as we parents have allowed their “inheritance” to be squandered in the name of a false utopia, predestined for failure by historical truth and example. No, I have decided there is far too much at stake, and little to be gained by simply allowing Progressivism to extinguish the torch of Liberty so many have died to protect. 2013 must be different. “We the People” must acknowledge and accept that we have dropped the ball, and time is no longer on our side. We must make a choice, or become just another failed nation which cast off freedom in favor of being ruled.

In the midst of a maelstrom of economic strife, albeit not just of one party’s making, President Barack Obama was elected and promised “Hope and Change” in 2008. He stood in the glow of history and eloquently described a new road for our country, a road paved with bi-partisan thinking and cooperation. Instead, we are on track to double our debt, and our economy is now on the brink of yet another crippling and potentially far more debilitating recession. Moreover, we have never seen a more uninformed and divided America, nor have we known a president more focused on ideological change and partisan politics, as this one. Now some may try and answer this with cries of racism and other baseless accusations, but I submit to you that there has not been an administration in U.S. history which has done more to promote that which they lament with such fervent gusto.

I’m sorry, but no more lies. No more acceptance of what common sense and sound principle tells us is wrong simply for the sake of “consensus”. In the end, a “consensus” of wrongheaded individuals who offer up the same tired, debt laden, and counterproductive so-called solutions, only prolongs the inevitable failure of a structure built on a compromised foundation.

We are indeed compromised in so many ways my fellow Americans. To deny this only makes you part of the problem. Instead, let us join together and face a storm unlike any we have ever faced. It will begin in our hearts, in our homes, and yes, in our churches. And it will only transcend to our cities, our states and to the nation, if it is shaped in the mold of a national movement to re-capture the “American Dream” we have lost. The reality is our “national death clock” has been sped up dramatically by irresponsible representation from local government to Washington, as well as a hijacking of the American self-reliant and entrepreneurial spirit our parents and grandparents passed on to us. We cannot and should not stand by and allow that spirit to be squashed by the naysayers and revisionists. This is not about party my friends. It’s simply “now or never” …

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Merry Christmas to all…

imagesCAXI9YENAnd it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed. (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.) And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.

And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:) to be taxed with Mary, his espoused wife, being great with child. And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.

And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid: And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.

And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us. And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child. And all they that heard it, wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds. But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.

And when eight days were accomplished for the circumcising of the child, his name was called Jesus, which was so named of the angel before he was conceived in the womb.

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Staying focused…

121206073220_boehner20obamaAmidst the tragedy in Newtown Connecticut remains the stinging reality of our fiscal and other woes. As the nation has been fixed on the horrific events which occurred at the Sandy Hook Elementary School, lawmakers have been pounding at each other from both sides of the aisle over the impending tax hikes and cuts to services which will occur if a deal is not reached soon. While the President is determined to take our country to the doorstep of social welfare for all, and John Boehner searches for any sign of his principles, the effects of Hurricane Sandy have filtered through the employment outlook and jobless claims are creeping up again. Moreover, hiring remains sluggish at best as businesses look to the “fiscal cliff” and hold off any type of expansion hiring. And for those who think this class warfare “line in the sand” way of thinking won’t affect jobs in this country, I hope you’re paying attention. We are all in for a bad taste of reality coming soon to an economy near you.

Sadly though, “We the People” have been experiencing distraction on an unimaginable and gut wrenching level. And so as we appropriately mourn the lost and search for ways to help their families, it is much more difficult to focus on what our politicians are doing behind the “political iron curtain” that is Washington DC. For instance, the Obama Administration’s culpability in the deaths of four brave diplomats in Benghazi is quickly slipping into the depths of bureaucratic smoke and mirrors. Additionally, our President is attempting to manipulate away our voice concerning our children’s debt, by way of failing economic policy and executive privilege not granted to him under the Constitution. And even more pathetic and troubling, is the fact that I cannot remember a time when those charged with objectively bringing us the facts regardless of political or personal ideology have been so negligent in their respective duties. Plain and simple, todays media are by and large, propagandists for this President and his politics.

So as we lay to rest the beloved children of Newtown and their teachers, it is incumbent upon “We the People” to stay focused. We must reach deeper than ever before to find the courage to make the tough choices on a whole range of critical issues which will determine not just our future, but the futures of our children. I truly believe the best way we may honor those lost, is to secure this free nation for those who must carry on.

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Honor them…

I suppose that in the age of the 24 hour news cycle we should expect nothing less than bell to bell coverage of the unimaginable tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut. Consequently, we should also expect agenda driven politicians and uniformed ideologues to exploit that tragedy for political and/or ideological gain. I recently posted on Facebook that I was trying desperately not to engage out of respect for the lost and their grieving families, and in spite of the enormous amount of misinformation being spewed by the anti-gun crowd. Unfortunately, it is now painfully obvious this may not be possible. The deaths of these young children and those who sought to protect them at the Sandy Hook Elementary School must not simply be the catalyst for change of the wrong kind, promoted by those of the wrong intent.

Make no mistake, the loss of these innocents by the hand of evil, manifested in the form of a person with mental illness, begs a discussion of a higher sort with the aim of protecting our most valuable resource on planet earth, our children. Having said that, the critical task at hand will require level headed and truthful participants with no ulterior motives, and whose intentions are laser focused on the above and nothing else. So let’s look at what is being put out there at present, both on the political as well as the media fronts.

For starters, it is clear the President will charge ahead with what he ignored in his first term because it was politically dangerous. On its face this should tell you much about Mr. Obama’s political intentions. I would add however, the suggestion his emotion is not genuine is simply ridiculous. The POTUS has two school age daughters and I’m quite sure he has been rattled by the events of 12/14. No, this is an ideological battle not a personal one, at least in terms of any solution going forward.

Notwithstanding personal attacks by either side, President Obama named his VP Joe Biden as the point man for a committee to make recommendations, citing Biden’s input on the Clinton era assault weapons ban. I’m sorry, would that be the ban which had “zero” impact on violent crime, as vetted by every credible reporting agency including the CDC, which conducted no less than 50 inquiries desperately searching for evidence to support the ban but found none? Oh, and Attorney General Eric Holder will be sought out for his input and has already recommended a stronger BATFE. I’m sorry, would that be the Attorney General and BATFE embroiled in the “Fast and Furious” gun running scandal which resulted in the deaths of over nine hundred Mexican civilians and two border agents?

When you add in Dick Durbin and Dianne Feinstein, two of the most partisan and uniformed politicians on the matter of gun control, it is easy to come to the conclusion that the “discussion” on how to make our children safer will be dominated by politics and misinformation. Moreover, the statistical data continues to show that so-called “assault weapons” account for just 1/5 of one percent of all violent crime, with 1/7 of all guns in circulation in the U.S. being “assault weapons”, just the tip of the iceberg in terms of the “numbers within the numbers” which clearly show the futility of additional gun control. (Note here, one only need look to the states with the highest violent crime rates to find the most draconian gun laws).

Look, this debate is just getting started. And while I continue to believe it is incumbent upon us to focus our efforts on supporting the families in their time of sorrow and loss, we must also guard against feel good applications which always results in the erosion of freedom, while doing nothing to address the issue of violence in our nation. Turning a blind eye to the root causes and societal factors which are at the heart of our “national condition”, is akin to doing nothing at all in the face of this unholy nightmare. As a father, I am with whoever truly endeavors in the name of the victims and the Newtown community, honestly and with the same motivations. As a patriot, I must also endeavor to preserve and protect my son’s liberty from those who would manipulate it by way of false and ideological rhetoric, intended only for political gain and offered not as substantive and genuine solutions. I feel the two approaches are inexorably linked. In the name of those lost, let the truth, the facts and a genuine desire to keep our children safe, be the catalyst for real “change for the better”…

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Its been a difficult weekend. I was comforted however to see a Barrington Police Officer standing watch as I dropped my 5th grader off at school this morning. But it did bring home some of the reality for me, if only out in front of any substantive discussions concerning why Sandy Hook happened.

Firstly, we understand there is evil in the world, which is sometimes manifested in ways we simply cannot imagine or understand. Secondly, we must rally in our communities and show support for the families of Newtown who need us emotionally and financially right now. And lastly, the question of “why” those innocent young children died should be first and foremost to be answered. “How” they died is a forensics question, and while certainly applicable, must be addressed in the appropriate context and order.

Inevitably, there will be many who attempt to frame this horrific incident in rhetorical terms in spite of fact and reason, and we must reject their efforts for the political fodder they are. For the moment, and frankly until the time is right, this is and should be about pulling those affected close to our hearts and keeping them in our prayers this Christmas.

May God Bless those little souls in Heaven this day, and may he provide some measure of solace to their families left behind.

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“I left my Christmas lights on all last night, so the babies could see them from Heaven.”…

“I left my Christmas lights on all last night, so the babies could see them from Heaven.”

I have been around the block a few times. Over the years, my life’s path has shown me more than a few unpleasant things. But this day, there is a knot in my stomach that won’t go away. I don’t know if I want to scream or cry. I feel as though I must do something. So for the moment I’m just talking to God and writing.

As a political pundit though, I’m going to get this out of the way up front. And just because of my aversion to all the fools out there who would politicize and exploit the tragedy in Newtown, while the bodies of those children still lie frozen in time on the floor of their elementary school. This is my post on Facebook after the incident occurred, and I will leave it at that for the moment.

Even more frustrating and disgusting, is to hear politicians and “media types” already rushing to the debate over gun control. Uninformed, irresponsible, incentive and disrespectful. For my part, I will pray for the loved and lost and say simply that this is big picture. And only after we bury our dead and tearfully comfort those left behind, will it be time for sensible and serious non-political folks to bring hearts and minds to the table of honest thought, so we may contemplate what truly ails our wounded society.

The one constant that keeps coming to my mind concerning the events of yesterday in Connecticut, is something Bill O’Reilly of “The Factor” said on his program last evening.  -“We can’t stop it“. Part of me believes he is right. Politics aside, how do you stop an individual who is unstable and proceeding unchecked from that instability? Moreover, I believe evil is real, often manifesting itself in human form and committing these nightmarish crimes against the innocent. So where does that leave us?

I’ll tell you where I believe it leaves us. It leaves us back at the beginning, back at the time when we decided that God had no place in our children’s classrooms, or in the halls of higher education and government. It leaves us in the place where we have become desensitized to the horror of war, violent crime and death, which are all now glamorized within the incredible graphics of the latest video games we allow our children to play. It leaves many families overworked and extended beyond their ability to see the warning signs. So much so that in some cases it is often too late to stop the resulting explosion of rage. And it leaves us running straight back to the arms of a loving God, who I believe is disappointed in the way we are living his gift to us, but willing to embrace our wounded souls nevertheless.

Look, I am not placing blame but rather applying what I can clearly see to any possible explanation for what seems unexplainable. I’m very sure the ensuing law enforcement investigation will begin to shed light on the events which led to this unimaginable act of violence. Regrettably, there will also be a great push by those of questionable intent to frame it in one way or another. Many facts will be ignored for the sake of political posturing, and in the end the true lessons may even be lost. For this father of a boy age 10, it comes down to a couple of simple realities. First and foremost is to take hold of your children, and do not take for granted a love and bond like no other on planet earth. And secondly, we are simply not the “be all and end all” damn it!

Faith alone may not stop things like this from happening. But I believe in my heart that if we do not deny Him, and at least make an effort every day to walk as He would have us, then “God” will not deny us a better world…

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A-123 Red Light!!!

The President has hailed many things as success stories, which supposedly relate to what is actually the fleecing of the American Tax Payer to the tune of almost $800 billion dollars, ( The American “Recovery” and Re-Investment Act). So it is like nails on a chalk board when I hear that voice from the past talking about companies like “A123” and how they were proof positive his (college try) was “and is working”. Even worse, A123 joins a growing list of companies and banks snatched up by the Chinese at bargain prices after being subsidized by “We the People”. It is simply unimaginable and frustrating to think that reasonable people can look at any of the cost to benefit ratios having to do with the 2009 “stimulus” plan, and not come to the conclusion that it has been an enormous and costly failure.

As we will see the Obama years inevitably yield a more economically and militarily compromised United States on the world stage, and as the nation continues its steady decline into “the new norm”, with a smaller work force, higher taxes for all, and inflation and gas prices more closely resembling those of Europe, it appears the President may indeed have been successful. Not in leaving a better America for our children, but rather in diminishing and reigning in the “arrogant, divisive and derisive” nation he has so openly and forthrightly criticized. Congratulations Mr. President, “mission accomplished“.

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