Thursday April 28th, 2015

"It Is Not A Question of Who Is Right Or Wrong But What Is Right Or Wrong That Counts."
--Geoff Metctalf


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Values for a New Millennium: Activating the Natural Law to Reduce Violence, Revitalize Our Schools, and Promote Cross-Cultural Harmony | [Robert Humphrey]



Shadow of Worlds: The Worlds of Man | JD Lovil
Shadow of Worlds: The Worlds of Man

   Old Blood: The Beginning, Book 1 | [Charles Thornton]          Product Details  

Old Blood: The Beginning, Book One 
Old Blood Book Two


Lost Scrolls of the Holy Beclay: Lost Scrolls, Book 1 | J. K. Haugen 


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World & National

20,000 illegals with criminal convictions released into U.S. communities in 2015
           U.S. Customs and Border Protection Air and Marine agents patrol along the Rio Grande on the Texas-Mexico border on Feb. 24, 2015, near Rio Grande City, Texas. (Associated Press)

Homeland Security has made some gains in detaining criminal aliens but still released into the community nearly 20,000 immigrants last year who’d already been convicted of crimes — including hundreds charges with sexual assault, kidnapping or homicide — according to figures sent to Congress this week.

Between them the aliens notched a total of 64,000 crimes, including 12,307 drunken driving convictions, 1,728 cases of assault, 216 kidnappings and more than 200 homicide or manslaughter convictions, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) told the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform ahead of a hearing Thursday.



Donald Trump could amass most primary votes in GOP history

Donald Trump will likely wind up winning the most primary votes of any GOP presidential candidate in modern history, the author of the influential Smart Politics blog told The Post on Wednesday.

After convincing victories in Tuesday’s primaries in five East Coast states, Trump has roughly 10.1 million votes, about 200,000 more than Mitt Romney got during the entire 2012 primary campaign.

And with the primaries ahead — including in populous states such as California, New Jersey and Indiana — the former “Apprentice” ­reality TV star should easily break the modern record of 10.8 million held by George W. Bush in 2000, according to blogger Eric Ostermeier, a political science professor at the University of Minnesota.



Donald in Control
Front-runner crosses 50 percent threshold
             With major primary victories Tuesday, GOP front-runner Donald Trump needs only a majority of the remaining states to win on the party's first convention ballot. (Associated Press)

Donald Trump is now on target to win the Republican presidential nomination at the GOP’s July convention, holding support from half of all delegates allocated so far, thanks to a massive haul Tuesday night that puts him firmly in the driver’s seat.

A Washington Times analysis found at least three dozen of the 54 “unbound” delegates elected in Pennsylvania’s primary have signaled support for Mr. Trump, and combined with the 953 “bound” delegates already won, that gives him a majority of all delegates awarded in the states that have voted so far.



Joe Biden makes unannounced visit to Iraq
             In this Thursday, April 7, 2016, file photo, Vice President Joe Biden speaks at an event in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher) ** FILE **

Vice President Joseph R. Biden made a surprise visit to Iraq Thursday to try to resolve political disunity in Baghdad that is undermining the Iraqi government’s efforts to fight the Islamic State terrorist group.

Mr. Biden’s office said he will hold meetings with Iraqi leadership “focused on encouraging Iraqi national unity and continued momentum in the fight against” the extremists.

A senior administration official traveling with Mr. Biden said he is “arriving at a moment of a lot of turbulence” in Baghdad. Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi is trying to implement a pledge to reform his government and reshuffle the cabinet, the official said.



Boehner: Cruz is 'Lucifer in the flesh'
The former House speaker also says that he would vote for Trump, and called the two of them 'texting buddies.'

When it comes to Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, even a few months’ time out of Congress has done little to lessen former Speaker John Boehner’s contempt for his former Capitol Hill colleague.

“Lucifer in the flesh,” Boehner told an audience at Stanford on Wednesday night, according to the Stanford Daily. “I have Democrat friends and Republican friends. I get along with almost everyone, but I have never worked with a more miserable son of a bitch in my life.”



Trump's unorthodoxy radically alters course GOP charted

Donald Trump is poised to change U.S. foreign and domestic policy to match more closely the mood of the nation.

In his Wednesday speech, carried live on cable news networks, Mr. Trump made clear that as president he would pursue an America-first foreign policy.



U.S. economy weakeset in Two Years

The U.S. economy expanded in the first quarter at the slowest pace in two years as American consumers reined in spending and companies tightened their belts in response to weak global financial conditions and a plunge in oil prices.

Gross domestic product rose at a 0.5 percent annualized rate after a 1.4 percent fourth-quarter advance, Commerce Department data showed Thursday. The increase was less than the 0.7 percent median projection in a Bloomberg survey and marked the third straight disappointing start to a year.

Business investment weakest since Great Recession...
Lackluster. Uneven. Pain... 
Homeownership rate falls to third lowest on record...
Obama First President Not to See Single Year of 3% Growth...



National sheriffs' group, opposed to federal laws on guns and taxes, calls for defiance

Local police chiefs and sheriffs typically swear to enforce the laws of their state. But a group called the Constitutional Sheriffs and Peace Officers Association is intent on strictly enforcing their view of the U.S. Constitution and, according to a long new piece by the Center for Public Integrity, “its ambition is to encourage law enforcement officers to defy laws they decide themselves are illegal.” In essence, they are troubled by the overreach of the federal government in matters concerning guns, taxes and land management, and founder Richard Mack has described the federals as “the greatest threat we face today,” and his association as “the army to set our nation free.”

In an interview with Julia Harte and former Post reporter R. Jeffrey Smith, Mack said he had enlisted “several hundred” of the more than 3,000 sheriffs around the country as members of the CSPOA, and that hundreds more are sympathetic. At the association’s 2014 convention, dozens of sheriffs signed a declaration that they would not tolerate any federal agent who attempted to register firearms, arrest someone or seize property in their counties without their consent.



Congress moves to require women to register for military draft

House lawmakers took a large step toward putting female soldiers on the front lines on Wednesday, approving legislation requiring women to register for the draft.

Members of the House Armed Services committee passed the measure as part of the panel’s version of the defense spending bill for fiscal year 2017, according to the Associated Press.



Judge tosses Seattle ordinance requiring garbage-can searches for food wasete

A state judge threw out a portion of a Seattle ordinance requiring garbage collectors to snoop through residents’ trash in search of food waste, calling the provision unconstitutional.

King County Superior Court Judge Beth M. Andrus issued an injunction against the garbage inspections but not Seattle’s residential food-waste ban, which forbids throwing away food scraps and compostable paper.



Ryan Calls for Change in Obamacaree Coverage for Sick Consumers

U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Paul Ryan called for an end to Obamacare's financial protections for people with serious medical conditions, saying these consumers should be placed in state high-risk pools.

In election-year remarks that could shed light on an expected Republican healthcare alternative, Ryan said existing federal policy that prevents insurers from charging sick people higher rates for health coverage has raised costs for healthy consumers while undermining choice and competition.



Obama's miscues over Britain's role in World War II
Britain helped America as much America did Britain

While in London last week, President Obama waded into the upcoming British referendum about whether the United Kingdom should stay in the European Union.

Controversy followed his lecture about the future of the Anglo-American relationship should Britain depart the EU. Mr. Obama also implied that without an EU, the United States might again be dragged into European squabbling, as it had been in the prior world wars.

Americans might take this occasion to reflect on Britain’s role in World War II.



Renegotiating Puerto Rico's debt and Trumpian anger
A bailout would damage the finances of average Americans

A majority of Americans aren’t enthusiastic about a potential President Trump. Nonetheless, anger with the political establishment about political games and backroom deals, about insiders’ arrogance, and about fear that taxpayers will end up largely being saddled with the costs of these antics seems to be a driving force behind the pro-Trump movement.

This problem didn’t appear suddenly. It has developed over time. Rather than take steps to minimize the concerns of the American people, Washington insiders seem oblivious. Every day the reasons for such anger keep growing.


                 Medal of Honor
 Army Medal of Honor

The Medal of Honor is the highest award for valor in action against an enemy force which can be bestowed upon an individual serving in the Armed Services of the United States.
GeneTrerally presented to its recipient by the President of the United States of America in the name of Congress.
The first award of the Medal of Honor was made March 25, 1863 to Private JACOB PARROTT.The last award of the Medal of Honor was made September 15, 2011 to Sergeant DAKOTA MEYER.

Since then there have been:  • 3458 recipients of the Medal of Honor.
    • Today there are 85 Living Recipients of the Medal of Honor.

VERSACE, HUMBERT R.
'Rocky'
Rank: Captain
Organization: U.S. Army
Date of Issue: 07/08/2002
VERSACE, HUMBERT R. Photo
Citation

Captain Humbert R. Versace distinguished himself by extraordinary heroism during the period of 29 October 1963 to 26 September 1965, while serving as S-2 Advisor, Military Assistance Advisory Group, Detachment 52, Ca Mau, Republic of Vietnam. While accompanying a Civilian Irregular Defense Group patrol engaged in combat operations in Thoi Binh District, An Xuyen Province, Captain Versace and the patrol came under sudden and intense mortar, automatic weapons, and small arms fire from elements of a heavily armed enemy battalion. As the battle raged, Captain Versace, although severely wounded in the knee and back by hostile fire, fought valiantly and continued to engage enemy targets. Weakened by his wounds and fatigued by the fierce firefight, Captain Versace stubbornly resisted capture by the over-powering Viet Cong force with the last full measure of his strength and ammunition. Taken prisoner by the Viet Cong, he exemplified the tenets of the Code of Conduct from the time he entered into Prisoner of War status. Captain Versace assumed command of his fellow American soldiers, scorned the enemy's exhaustive interrogation and indoctrination efforts, and made three unsuccessful attempts to escape, despite his weakened condition which was brought about by his wounds and the extreme privation and hardships he was forced to endure. During his captivity, Captain Versace was segregated in an isolated prisoner of war cage, manacled in irons for prolonged periods of time, and placed on extremely reduced ration. The enemy was unable to break his indomitable will, his faith in God, and his trust in the United States of America. Captain Versace, an American fighting man who epitomized the principles of his country and the Code of Conduct, was executed by the Viet Cong on 26 September 1965. Captain Versace's gallant actions in close contact with an enemy force and unyielding courage and bravery while a prisoner of war are in the highest traditions of the military service and reflect the utmost credit upon himself and the United States Army.



From the Archives

American Fairness to a Fault — a Deadly One
Tuesday, 10 Nov 2009 02:28 PM

American’s tragic flaw is our unbridled fairness, which has been corrupted ever more by the cancer of political correctness to the point we put ourselves at risk rather than create even the perception of prejudice.

Sometime after the VOLAR (all volunteer) Army, the military veered from the “yes sir, yes sir, three bags full” blind adherence to all orders to the concept of refusing “unlawful orders” and that was ostensibly a good thing.

However, the uniformed services do not set or get to pick and choose foreign policy. The civilian leadership sets foreign policy, and the U.S. military enforces it — with a big, honking combined arms stick.

Retired Lt. Col. Ralph Peters has been one of the rare pundits with the courage to target the “culture of political correctness” in leadership of the military. In at least two interviews on Fox, Peters (correctly) blamed the culture of political correctness for the Army’s diffidence in taking action against Nidal Malik Hasan in the wake of knowledge of the problem.

Many mechanisms exist for dealing with matters of deep conscience — all without killing those one might think disagree with in principle.

However, it is not prejudice to discriminate based on threat facts in evidence. Refusal to act judiciously for fear of a tainted perception is just plain dumb.

Notwithstanding the articulated fears of the Army chief of staff and the secretary of Homeland Security, officials made an epic mistake in handling suspicions about Hasan. A mistake founded on political correctness and sustained by diffidence that cost the lives of innocents.

Reportedly, U.S. intelligence agencies were aware (months ago) that Hasan was attempting to make contact with people associated with al-Qaida. He spoke openly to too many people about his angst and misdirected sympathies. He was apparently a poster child for suspicion, and the Army failed bigtime to intervene.

“It is not known whether the intelligence agencies informed the Army that one of its officers was seeking to connect with suspected al-Qaida figures," the officials said.

But you damnbetcha they SHOULD have done so.

Investigators want to know whether Hasan maintained contact with a radical mosque leader from Virginia, Anwar al Awlaki, who now lives in Yemen and runs a Web site that promotes jihad around the world against the United States.

In a recent blog posting titled "Nidal Hassan Did the Right Thing," Awlaki calls Hasan a "hero" and a "man of conscience who could not bear living the contradiction of being a Muslim and serving in an army that is fighting against his own people."

Increasingly we are told people who knew or worked with Hasan say he seemed to become gradually more radical in his condemnation of the war in Iraq and Afghanistan. Subordinates and superiors had a responsibility to flag the inappropriate rhetoric, and they apparently did not.

The fear to speak out is a symptom of the PC disease fueled by recriminations and implied threats of discrimination — a fear that indirectly resulted in mayhem.

Sen. Joseph Lieberman said, "If Hasan was showing signs, saying to people that he had become an Islamist extremist, the U.S. Army has to have a zero tolerance," and despite the echo of shutting the barn door after the horse got out, he is right.

Army Chief of Staff Gen. George Casey Jr. is concerned that speculation about the religious beliefs of Hasan could “cause a backlash against some of our Muslim soldiers.” He’s right, but such a backlash would be a direct result of the failure of command — not prejudice.

When confronted about whether he thought the Army “dropped the ball” in not responding to warning signs, Casey replied that the Army needs to be careful not to jump to conclusions based on early tidbits of information.

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R.-S.C., and Sen. Jack Reed, D-R.I., both of whom are veterans, took pains to say that Muslims have served honorably in the military and at risk to their lives.

“At the end of the day, this is not about his religion — the fact that this man was a Muslim,” Graham said on CBS’ “Face the Nation.”

But, hey, it is (kinda/sorta) about religion (when the FBI says 10 percent of American Mosques preach jihad) — at least from a risk analysis perspective.