Tuesday June 23rd, 2015
"It Is Not A
Question of Who Is Right Or Wrong But What Is Right Or Wrong
Updated 1022 hrs PT
Call anytime(888) 283-5051
Please Listen to Geoff's Audio Books
(and tell ten people to tell ten people to tell ten people?)
Republicans Give Him Power
The Senate on Tuesday voted to advance President Obama’s trade
agenda, approving a measure to end debate on fast-track authority.
The 60-37 motion sets up a vote on final passage on Wednesday. If the
Senate approves fast-track or trade promotion authority (TPA), it would
then be sent to Obama’s desk to become law.
Fast-track authority would allow Obama to send trade deals to Congress
for up-or-down votes. The White House wants the authority to conclude
negotiations on a sweeping trans-Pacific trade deal.
Bipartisan distrust of Obama threatens trade deal, remainder of term
warming has emerged as the newest battleground on trade, with opponents
on both the right and the left trying to use the hot-button issue to
sink President Obama’s quest for a legacy-building free trade deal.
Conservatives argue that Mr. Obama will use trade negotiating powers to
write a binding climate deal into any agreement and say that alone is
reason to deny the White House fast-track negotiating powers. Liberal
opponents of a trade deal say they don’t think the agreement gives the
president enough power to work on trade.
The confusing dichotomy underscores the distrust of Mr. Obama on both
sides of the political spectrum — and the intensity of opponents
determined to scuttle the emerging deal.
Ted Cruz: Obamatrade Enmeshed in Corrupt, Backroonm Dealings
The American people do not trust President Obama. And they do not trust
Republican leadership in Congress. And the reason is simple: for far
too long, politicians in Washington have not told the truth.
Both President Obama and Republican leadership are pressing trade
promotion authority, also known as TPA, or “fast-track.” Rep. Nancy
Pelosi (D-CA) and Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) both oppose it.
As a general matter, I agree (as did Ronald Reagan) that free trade is
good for America; when we open up foreign markets, it helps American
farmers, ranchers, and manufacturers.
But TPA in this Congress has become enmeshed in corrupt Washington
backroom deal-making, along with serious concerns that it would open up
the potential for sweeping changes in our laws that trade agreements
typically do not include.
McConnell asks senators to cast pro-trade vote once more
Backers of President Barack Obama's trade agenda are imploring key
senators to stand by their previous votes when they revisit the issue in
a showdown set for Tuesday.
Opponents meanwhile are mounting an equally emotional push to keep Obama
from obtaining "fast track" authority to negotiate trade agreements
with Pacific Rim countries and others.
The Roberts Court's Surrising Move Leftward
The Supreme Court under Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. has been a
conservative court. But even conservative courts have liberal terms –
and the current term is leaning left as it enters its final two weeks.
The court has issued liberal decisions in 54 percent of the cases in
which it had announced decisions as of June 22, according to the Supreme
Court Database, using a widely accepted standard developed by political
scientists. If that trend holds, the final percentage could rival the
highest since the era of the notably liberal court of the 1950s and
1960s led by Chief Justice Earl Warren. The closest contenders are the
previous term and the one that started in 2004 and ended with the
announcement of Justice Sandra Day O’Connor’s retirement.
Obama to ease rules against ransom of U.S. hostages
is expected to announce Wednesday that the government will no longer
threaten criminal prosecution of families of U.S. hostages held by
terrorist groups such as the Islamic State if they attempt to pay
The reversal is
intended to fix what the administration believes is a broken policy on
American hostages, a senior administration official told The New York
Mr. Obama plans
to issue an executive order to make clear that, although he isn’t
changing federal policy against making concessions with hostage-takers,
the government can communicate and negotiate with captors holding
Americans or help family members trying to gain the safe return of
loved ones, the paper reported.
Obama extending amnesty to illegals in prisons, jails
administration has ordered agents to begin ignoring many of the illegal
immigrants they encounter in local prisons and jails, as the president
begins to implement a lesser-known part of his deportation amnesty
program — a move that’s not sitting well with either side in the
The move is a
nod to sanctuary cities, who had begun to refuse to cooperate with
federal authorities on immigration enforcement. After having court
challenges, Mr. Obama bowed to those cities, counties and states and
announced the changes as part of his November 2014 amnesty policy.
Trump Surges in Popularity in N.H.
by the political professionals, but there is no denying that the
appetite for Donald Trump among Republican primary voters is real.
The New York
developer and reality television star is second among 2016 presidential
candidates in a new Suffolk University poll of New Hampshire
Republicans – behind only former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.
The poll of 500
likely GOP presidential primary voters found 14% back Mr. Bush. Mr.
Trump is right behind at 11%. Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and Florida
Sen. Marco Rubio come next, with 8% and 7%, respectively. The poll
tested 19 GOP candidates – a rare survey that included ultra-longshots
like Mark Everson and former Govs. Bob Ehrlich and Jim Gilmore.
Letting no tragedy to to waste
processions to the graveyards in Charleston will be crowded unless the
families can keep out the interlopers, exploiters and other cheap
opportunists. The easy riders have hitched up their hobbyhorses for the
Some of the
long riders want to shoot down the Confederate flag. Others have oiled
their long rifles for the promised cavalry charge against the National
Rifle Association. Even the Arabs, who have never distinguished
themselves on a battlefield, want to join the mob to avenge murder of
Christians at Charleston.
The soldiers of
CAIR, the loudest Muslim lobbying organization, joins the crusade to
tear down the Confederate flag wherever they find it, as “a fitting
memorial to those slain in one of America’s deadliest acts of racist
violence.” CAIR needs help with American history. Massacre at the World
Trade Center, where more than 3,000 Americans were slain for the sin of
being Christians, Jews and unbelievers, set the standard for massacre.
Punks and crazies eager to get their names in the Guinness Book of
Records will be shooting at 9/ll for decades to come.
Obama's coming epidemic of drugs
When he assumed
office in 2009, President Obama inherited a drug policy success of
unprecedented dimensions. Cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, marijuana,
and misused opiate prescriptions were all under control or declining.
The drug threat, especially for youth, was substantially smaller. That
tide of achievement is now reversing.
At the end of
the Bush years, youth use of marijuana had declined 25 percent, aided
by an effective national media campaign. Youth use of cocaine and
heroin had also declined, while psychedelics had plummeted even
further, as Ecstasy and LSD collapsed. These achievements, measured by
surveys, were corroborated by nationwide workforce drug testing, where
rates of positives were in decline.
prescription opiate misuse peaked in 2006, and the Combat
Methamphetamine Act of 2005 resulted in steep declines in not only meth
use but in the number of toxic labs that produced it.
Medal of Honor is the highest award for valor in action
enemy force which can be bestowed upon an individual serving
Armed Services of the United States.
to its recipient by the President of the
United States of America in the name of Congress.
first award of the Medal of Honor was made March 25, 1863 to
JACOB PARROTT.The last award of the Medal of Honor was made
September 15, 2011
to Sergeant DAKOTA MEYER.
then there have been: •
3458 recipients of the Medal of Honor.
Today there are 85 Living Recipients of the
Medal of Honor.
BENAVIDEZ, ROY P.
Rank: Master Sergeant
Organization: U.S. Army
Company: Detachment B-56
Division: 5th Special Forces Group
BENAVIDEZ, ROY P.
Master Sergeant (then Staff Sergeant) Roy P. Benavidez
United States Army, who distinguished himself by a series of daring and
extremely valorous actions on 2 May 1968 while assigned to Detachment
B56, 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne), 1st Special Forces, Republic
of Vietnam. On the morning of 2 May 1968, a 12-man Special Forces
Reconnaissance Team was inserted by helicopters in a dense jungle area
west of Loc Ninh, Vietnam to gather intelligence information about
confirmed large-scale enemy activity. This area was controlled and
routinely patrolled by the North Vietnamese Army. After a short period
of time on the ground, the team met heavy enemy resistance, and
requested emergency extraction. Three helicopters attempted extraction,
but were unable to land due to intense enemy small arms and
anti-aircraft fire. Sergeant Benavidez was at the Forward Operating
Base in Loc Ninh monitoring the operation by radio when these
helicopters returned to off-load wounded crewmembers and to assess
aircraft damage. Sergeant Benavidez voluntarily boarded a returning
aircraft to assist in another extraction attempt. Realizing that all
the team members were either dead or wounded and unable to move to the
pickup zone, he directed the aircraft to a nearby clearing where he
jumped from the hovering helicopter, and ran approximately 75 meters
under withering small arms fire to the crippled team. Prior to reaching
the team's position he was wounded in his right leg, face, and head.
Despite these painful injuries, he took charge, repositioning the team
members and directing their fire to facilitate the landing of an
extraction aircraft, and the loading of wounded and dead team members.
He then threw smoke canisters to direct the aircraft to the team's
position. Despite his severe wounds and under intense enemy fire, he
carried and dragged half of the wounded team members to the awaiting
aircraft. He then provided protective fire by running alongside the
aircraft as it moved to pick up the remaining team members. As the
enemy's fire intensified, he hurried to recover the body and classified
documents on the dead team leader. When he reached the leader's body,
Sergeant Benavidez was severely wounded by small arms fire in the
abdomen and grenade fragments in his back. At nearly the same moment,
the aircraft pilot was mortally wounded, and his helicopter crashed.
Although in extremely critical condition due to his multiple wounds,
Sergeant Benavidez secured the classified documents and made his way
back to the wreckage, where he aided the wounded out of the overturned
aircraft, and gathered the stunned survivors into a defensive
perimeter. Under increasing enemy automatic weapons and grenade fire,
he moved around the perimeter distributing water and ammunition to his
weary men, reinstilling in them a will to live and fight. Facing a
buildup of enemy opposition with a beleaguered team, Sergeant Benavidez
mustered his strength, began calling in tactical air strikes and
directed the fire from supporting gunships to suppress the enemy's fire
and so permit another extraction attempt. He was wounded again in his
thigh by small arms fire while administering first aid to a wounded
team member just before another extraction helicopter was able to land.
His indomitable spirit kept him going as he began to ferry his comrades
to the craft. On his second trip with the wounded, he was clubbed from
additional wounds to his head and arms before killing his adversary. He
then continued under devastating fire to carry the wounded to the
helicopter. Upon reaching the aircraft, he spotted and killed two enemy
soldiers who were rushing the craft from an angle that prevented the
aircraft door gunner from firing upon them. With little strength
remaining, he made one last trip to the perimeter to ensure that all
classified material had been collected or destroyed, and to bring in
the remaining wounded. Only then, in extremely serious condition from
numerous wounds and loss of blood, did he allow himself to be pulled
into the extraction aircraft. Sergeant Benavidez' gallant choice to
join voluntarily his comrades who were in critical straits, to expose
himself constantly to withering enemy fire, and his refusal to be
stopped despite numerous severe wounds, saved the lives of at least
eight men. His fearless personal leadership, tenacious devotion to
duty, and extremely valorous actions in the face of overwhelming odds
were in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service,
and reflect the utmost credit on him 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
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
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
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
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
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