Wednesday, April 30, 2008
By day I work in the Housing Industry. I have been in Construction for 11.5 years, and decided to move into this field after being a pencil-pusher for 12 years. I have actually been able to retire since 1999, but due to circumstances that essentially makes me remain in Southern California, rather than retire on the Oregon Coast, I remain here, working to pass the time.
Of late, work has been slow. The economic slowdown, which I believe to be a direct result of government manipulation, has been most apparent in the housing industry. As a result, until recently, I have had plenty of time to blog.
Something interesting has happened, however, despite the doom and gloom regarding the economy the mainstream media puts out. Housing is picking up, houses are beginning to sell, and as a result, my company is receiving a lot of work - - - so much work that we are looking at going on seven-day-a-week schedules.
You may say that this is not true. We are heading toward a recession. The eleven o'clock news says so!
The free market economy is self-adjusting. I saw it adjust when I was a financial consultant back in the early 90's, and I am seeing it do so now. When a slowdown hits, prices drop, making it a buyers market. Then as buyers begin to buy, prices rise, making it a sellers market, eventually forcing a slowdown because buyers no longer are interested in purchases as they were before because of the rise of prices. . . which results in a drop of prices again in order to sell the products to less consumers willing to buy (remember economy class? Supply and Demand?), and so on, and so on. However, every time a rise or fall in the economy happens the doom and gloom politicians and leftard political junkies start screaming that we are headed toward a recession.
Folks, a recession must see two consecutive quarters of negative growth, and that just isn't happening. Granted, the growth is small, but it is still there.
In fact, the houses we dug the foundations of today is a part of a release of new houses that has sold out "before" the models were even completed!
Unfortunately, the Democrats are trying to create an atmosphere of doom and gloom regarding the economy so that they can claim that they will "save us" from the coming recession, and George W. Bush has reacted with an idiotic stimulus package (and anyone say, "legacy building?") that will not only not stimulate an economy that does not need his manipulative finger on its pulse, but will result in a further deficit and another excuse for the liberal left to raise taxes in order to try to replace the funds used for the stimulus package that would honestly have been better used somewhere else. The stimulus package that George Bush is so proud of takes more money out of our pockets in the long run with the taxes rise, and that will then possibly send us into the very recession the politicians say they are trying to avoid.
Maddening, isn't it?
On April 7th I reported on Political Pistachio News the arrival of a new internet technology called "The Grid." Little did I know at the time that there is another technology rising that is also vying for position as the next big thing. Question is, which is better? The GRID? Or is it WIMAX Wireless and its Mind Boggling Speed? Either way the next generation of internet will be thousands of times faster than the existing fastest internet speeds, and it is here now! Ari Zoldan, the King of Wimax, is our guest tonight. He is a leading pioneer in Internet Technology, and is ready to move us to the purely wireless age. Join us at 10pm Eastern Tonight on Political Pistachio Radio to hear about this exciting technology, and how it will affect the information transfer industry, and politics.
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
Alan Keyes served in the U.S. State Department during the Reagan years, ultimately appointed by President Ronald Reagan as Assistant Secretary of State for International Organizations. He also served on the National Security Council staff.
A Constitutional scholar, Alan Keyes is a strict constructionist, believing the U.S. Constitution should be interpreted and applied as written - not as distorted by dictatorial courts or self-serving special interests.
Alan Keyes considers himself to be more than a mere economic conservative, or social conservative. He calls himself a "moral conservative" meaning that he sees both the economic and social concerns of America from a moral perspective. He believes that a moral perspective is necessary to govern wisely.
Mr. Keyes has become a respected voice in the non-liberal media, and will now join the new media as a guest on Political Pistachio Radio. He is our guest tonight at 10pm Eastern.
Monday, April 28, 2008
The United States provides assistance to the Palestinian Authority in the hopes of helping the people. However, there is evidence that this aid is not being used as the U.S. intends, but actually funds the Palestinian Authority with weapons, money, and training, meaning that the U.S. is actually funding terrorism. Israel is constantly bombarded by Hamas and Hezbollah, but former president Jimmy Carter claims that Hamas only wants peace. However, after denouncing the recent Israeli seminary school shooting, Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas' official Palestinian Authority daily newspaper is holding the terrorist up as a hero, calling him a martyr who died while fighting jihad.
James Hutchens, PhD, a former U.S. Military Chaplain who retired with the rank of Brigadier General says that our aid to the Palestinians is in violation of our laws, and states that Jimmy Carter's so-called peace-seeking friends have a charter calling for the total annihilation of Israel.
But why should we defend Israel? Why is our alliance with Israel so important?
James Hutchens is also the President of the JerUSAlem Connection, the foremost Christian Zionist magazine in America, and he is on a mission for Israel. He is on the battle front in the area of informing, educating, and activating America's Christian community on issues related to Israel from a Biblical perspective. His military experience also makes him well acquainted with the concept of "Mission," decorated with a Purple Heart as a result of his time as a battle chaplain in Viet Nam.
He joins us tonight on Political Pistachio Radio at 10pm Eastern Time. Please Join Us.
cross-posted at Heading Right and various other sites in the Political Pistachio Family of Sites
Sunday, April 27, 2008
Like the weather, human events can be unpredictable. Despite the sophisticated technology that mankind wields, our species continues to be unable to predict the weather forecast, or worldwide human events, accurately. Granted, our ability to read some of the rudimentary signs of the weather has become more dependable than past generations, and sometimes to read the signs of weather all one must do is look out the window. So why is it that the most obvious signs of human events and their deteriorating nature, which can be seen plainly by looking out the window and observing, is so difficult for our species to recognize as going in an amoral direction?
Tick, tick, tick. . .
I recognize that with each generation there has always been that old man sitting on his lawn grumbling about how the world is going to Hell-in-a-hand-basket because the kids of the most recent generation are "this" and they are "that." My grandfather told me stories about how his parents shook their heads over some of his shenanigans. In the 1950's the older generation considered the kids of that day to be out of control hooligans. The next generation, according to the elderly population, was populated by a bunch of lazy, disrespectful, pot-smoking hippies. The "Me-Generation" is narcissistic, and "Generation-X" is lost with no direction. There has always been a grumbling about the deterioration of society, and each generation has proclaimed that the complainers were too old to understand, and not hip enough to keep up.
Tick, tick, tick. . .
"Creeping Incrementalism" is the term for the slow change of society we are experiencing. Some people would compare our society's road to social demoralization and destruction to a frog slowly boiling in a pot. The frog swims around in the warm water, enjoying the sauna-like conditions, never realizing he is being slowly cooked until death approaches, and by then it is too late to bail out of the pot.
Tick, tick, tick. . .
What kind of society condones the death of innocent blood through abortion, and fights to protect the lives of guilty mass-murderers against the death penalty? How can we survive as a society with an ever increasing divorce rate that is splintering the family unit, while simultaneously encouraging the weakening of the Christian institution of marriage through the homosexual agenda's demands for gay marriage? How many people must die of AIDS, or suffer from the various other sexually transmitted diseases, before society realizes that its practice of promiscuous, non-marital sexual conduct is one of the leading factors of spreading these diseases? How many rights must be lost by Christians before the Politically Correct worldview completes is persecution of Christianity, and then turns on other groups that have turned a blind eye regarding the war against the Christian Faith? How many more people must die before we gain a foothold on our ever increasing violent society which is being fueled by our total disregard for the sanctity of life?
Tick, tick, tick. . .
How long can we be "business as usual" before the final hour strikes, and the consequences for our decaying society finally catch up to us?
Tick, tick, tick. . .
As I look at today's society, I find it strikingly similar to passages of scripture that describes Earth's final days. Are we living in those times? I believe we may. One thing is for sure, we are a generation experiencing a moral decline like never seen before in America.
Tick, tick, tick. . .
And as it was in the days of Noah, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man. Luke 17:26
Join the Christians Against Leftist Heresy blogroll sponsored by Faultline USA.
And don't forget to visit Political Pistachio News for the latest news, and Political Pistachio Radio Blog for the latest schedule of Political Pistachio Radio shows!
Saturday, April 26, 2008
And here is the upcoming schedule for Political Pistachio Radio:
Personal Pistachio - Adjusting to Civilian Life (and married life)
= Through the Years on Personal Pistachio - 1988 through 1989. . . 4/27/2008
6:00 PM Pacific Time
The Jerusalem Connection President and Editor on Political Pistachio
James Hutchins is very pro-Israel . . . but why do we continue to be Israel's ally? How does such an alliance benefit the U.S.? Find out tonight as I interview Mr. Hutchins on Political Pistachio 4/28/2008
7:00 PM Pacific Time
Alan Keyes on Political Pistachio - Conservative Commentary
Alan Keyes has announced a break with the GOP. He is a conservative, Christian, and Reaganite. . . and his influence in Conservatism is felt across the board - Join us tonight as we have the opportunity to interview this Great American! 4/29/2008
7:00 PM Pacific Time
The Next Generation Internet (& its Political Impact) on Political Pistachio-Conservative Commentary
Is the GRID the next big thing in information transfer? Or is WIMAX Wireless and its Mind Boggling Speed faster? Either way it is thousands times faster than the existing fastest internet speeds, and it is here now! Ari Zoldan, the King of Wimax is our guest tonight. He is a leading pioneer in Internet Technology, and is ready to move us to the purely wireless age- - - tonight on Political Pistachio - 4/30/2008
7:00 PM Pacific Time
Your Freedom to Home School on Political Pistachio - Conservative Commentary
Mike Donnelly of the Home School Legal Defense Association joins us to discuss this quickly rising important issue - 5/1/2008
7:00 PM Pacific Time
Back To Basics for the Republican Party on Political Pistachio Conservative Commentary
Michael Zak is the author of the book, "Back To Basics for the Republican Party," as well as site owner of RepublicanBasics.com and http://grandoldpartison.typepad.com. . . He is an expert on the Founding Principles of the United States, and the History of the Republican Party. Join us as we interview Michael Zak tonight on Political Pistachio Radio - Politics Conservative 5/3/2008 7:00 PM Pacific Time
And don't forget about the shows I co-host:
Andrea Shea King, Monday Nights at 6:00 PM Pacific Time
CIR Radio, Friday Nights at 6:00 PM Pacific Time
Founding Truth, Saturday Nights at 5:00 PM Pacific Time
And, though it is not confirmed for which day yet, Rick Davis, father of Jonathan Davis of KORN, will join me to discuss the impact of the music industry on politics, and the impact politics has on the music industry (and you never know, Jonathan might call in too!) Note: Family relation. . . find out how I am related to the Davis Family on the show with Rick Davis which will air either the 5th, 6th, or 7th of May. And yes, KORN Rocks!
cross-posted on Heading Right, and throughout the Political Pistachio Family of Sites
Wednesday, April 23, 2008
Thanks to a lot of hard work on the part of a lot of campaign volunteers it looks like the Russell Campaign is back on the ballot. In an e-mail from him I received, the Murtha opponent gave a great thank to all that have been helping him for the enthusiasm, phone calls, footwork, and prayers. It would not have been possible without you! Russell needed 1000 votes to be listed on the ballot for the General Election in November.
Here are the preliminary and partial reports as of late last night:
Washington County 764
TOTAL TO DATE 1607
You can also check out these videos on Youtube:
FOX News Happening Now! Interview on April 8, 2008
Tuesday, April 22, 2008
Today I did some work at Point Loma across the bay from San Diego, up on the top of the hill where Fort Rosecrans lies directly above the Naval Submarine Base. I was there doing work for the U.S. Navy, and from where I was (not too far from the Cabrillo Monument) the view was breathtaking.
Electrons and Silver Gates became the last thing on my mind as the view spread out before me. High atop Point Loma the entire San Diego Bay was in view. Nearest to me I saw Shelter Island, and the numerous yachts docked at the two islands. On the furthest island I recognized the Hilton, a hotel I am familiar with from past business dealings, and the 2006 La Jolla Writers Conference. To the right of the yachts lies the Submarine Base. Directly across the water is Naval Air Station North Island, which is also the first San Diego base I was stationed at after departing from Pensacola, Florida.
Today was clear enough that I could see the Silver Strand all the way to Imperial Beach. Spanning the bay from Coronado to San Diego was that great blue Coronado Bay Bridge. San Diego, her buildings reaching upward, completed the majestic scene.
During most of the day, in between tasks, I watched the helicopters and planes depart from, and arrive at, the base across the bay. Boats zoomed along the glittering water of the bay. Twice I saw civilian tankers float by. Then, in the early afternoon, off to the right at the mouth of the bay, I observed a great and mighty carrier coming into view. She was beautiful.
Patrol boats zoomed around her, warding away any civilian boats that may wish to get close. A single F-18 sat upon her flight deck just fore of the superstructure. Once the carrier's port side faced me, I saw the hull number. 76. CVN-76.
At first I wasn't sure which one she was. I knew the Reagan was ported in San Diego, but my memories were of the Kitty Hawk, Constellation, and Ranger; distant memories of a much older Navy. After a moment of thought, however, I realized that the carrier I was watching return to her home was the USS Ronald Reagan.
The USS Ronald Reagan is much larger than those older carriers. Her flight deck is massive. When she passed, and her aft section faced me, I was amazed at how wide she is. Then she pulled into her berth at NAS North Island, probably near the spot where my own USS Chandler, DDG-996 (now decommissioned) used to dock.
I smiled. Peace Through Strength. Strength, indeed. The Reagan, from what I could see, is a mighty vessel. I was proud to be able to watch her float by.
Monday, April 21, 2008
My daughter is a senior in high school. She's charming, intelligent, and a diligent worker. She has a job, a car, and communicates well with us. Her boyfriend is in most of her classes with her, and none of her teachers have any complaints about them being together because they work well as a team, and always get their work done.
But enough of what I think of her. . .
Tonight I attended my daughter's open house at her high school. My wife had a class to attend tonight, and my daughter is working. So, that means I could discuss whatever I wanted with the teachers, and ask the questions that my daughter would normally roll her eyes regarding.
Her economics teacher tells me she's a hard worker and a joy to have in class, and then after meeting with him I decided to trot over to her government teacher's class from last semester. He's an interesting sort, real sharp, and liberal to the core. He is proud that he once worked for the Democratic National Committee. We talked for a while, shared a few laughs, and he asked me how the radio show is going. I proudly proclaimed that Alan Keyes will be my guest on April 29, so I guess the show is going pretty well. I enjoyed the conversation. He's one of the few liberals I talk to that discusses the issues, rather than being in attack-mode twenty-four/seven like some that I know.
Her math teacher repeated the same thing about her being a joy to have in class, a hard worker (and he adds she is one of the few students he has that turns in all of her work), and if it wasn't for a couple test scores being low, she'd be kickin' butt in the class. Math wasn't my strong-suit either. In fact, when I was in college, it was the math classes that dragged my GPA down from the upper 3's.
Environmental Science? Well, same mantra. Pleasure to have in class, hard worker, and all that jazz. Oh, and we talked a little football too, seeing that he's a Raiders fan like me.
She has a college prep class that is all about preparing for college, too. Short discussion with the teacher, but she told me that my daughter is definitely looking forward to attending college, though she has decided to take the junior college route first so that she can better determine what she wishes to pursue. I changed my major a few times, myself.
Finally, I had a pleasant conversation with my daughter's British Literature teacher. Strangely, my daughter is not a big fan of reading, but she's pulling a high grade in this class anyhow. We discussed the current reading project, 1984 by George Orwell. Then, writing and blogging came up.
What I found most fascinating about tonight is how different my conversations with the teachers were compared to just a few years ago.
In Middle School and as a Freshman my daughter never completed her work, failed to ever turn in homework assignments, and her grades were the same, minus one leg (A/F). So why the change? Why is she now the apple of her teacher's eyes, and the hardest working kid in class?
After receiving punishments and listening to many lectures from me about the competitive nature of the world (and the fact that the decisions she makes now will affect her future), she realized that she had no one to blame but herself. Life was rough because she made it that way with her inattention to her responsibilities. Like anyone, she is solely responsible for the choices in her life. Nobody else can choose how she feels or thinks, and being offended or upset by what others say is simply giving them power over her emotions. The direction of her life is her choice, and poor choices are nobody's fault but her own. Blaming others will only delay her paying the consequences for her actions. She learned to point the finger of responsibility back to herself. And in the end, she is her best motivator. She doesn't need anybody else to make her feel good about herself. And then, when she became successful, the success was addicting. She began to enjoy doing well. And out of it, her self-confidence developed, and through it, maturity took hold.
Now, as she prepares for college and progresses academically, she has taken an honest inventory of her strengths, abilities, talents, virtues, and positive points. Through this growth she has developed a positive, self-affirming attitude.
All that, just because she decided to take personal responsibility. Amazing what self-reliance can accomplish.
On the heels of an appalling cover of Time Magazine, which depicts the World War II Iwo Jima Flag Raising in an environmental, Global Warming manner, showing disrespect for the military, the fallen heroes that has fought to keep our nation free, and American history, the loony left is at it again with more over-the-top idiocy.
The societal turmoil over the conflict in Iraq is understandable, though misplaced. The liberal left, or at least the ones running around blocking the entrances of recruiting stations, or the ones disrupting congressional hearings, or the ones conducting their destructive protests in the streets with anti-American slogans and signs, have decided that the best way to protest against the violence of war is to conduct even more violent protests, but this time against Olympic torch runners. Why does a group so bent on stopping what they consider to be violence and hate resort to protesting in ways that promotes destruction and hate?
I agree that China is out of line, and needs to be dealt with, but where were these voices for the last sixty years regarding Chinese aggression? And what about Islam? There human rights record, especially against women and anyone not a devout Muslim, is atrocious. Why aren't they protesting the Islamic fascists for their crimes?
In regards to the Middle East, I recognize that it is a tragedy that our fine young men and women are dying on foreign soil. Like the majority of Americans, I want nothing more than for our troops to return home. But I also understand that we can't do that, not without finishing the job in Iraq and Afghanistan first. If we were to abandon the region, it would be a victory in the eyes of the enemy, thus encouraging them to promote another major terrorist attack against the U.S., and it sends the message to the world that we cannot be trusted to finish what we start.
We must remember, too, that the conflict in Iraq is but one battle of many in a much larger war against the Islamic Jihad. In the five years we have been in Iraq we have lost a little more than 4,000 soldiers. Tens of thousands of Iraqi's and insurgents have died, a vast majority as a result of in-fighting and foreign trained terrorists trying to seize control of Iraq and return it to a terrorist state. The total death toll in Iraq according to many liberal sites is slightly over 90,000. Of course, these numbers anger the liberal left. They anger me too. If the Islamic Jihad did not declare war on us, we would not have to lose our young men and women while fighting this war. The liberal left fails to recognize that the Holy War was declared against us! And they fail to see that in any other war we have participated in the death tolls were in the millions, not tens of thousands as in the case of the Global War on Terror. Also, we must realize that compared to the number of deaths we would have lost in more attacks against the U.S., of which we have not suffered because of us taking the fight to the enemy, this number is relatively small. Remember, 3,000 American lives were snuffed out in one single day by the Islamic Jihad on 9/11. Had we not responded, how many other attacks claiming thousands of innocent Americans would have followed 9/11?
The liberal left seems to think that the Islamic Jihad against The West is somehow America's fault, or it is a minor thing that we need not trifle with. The leaders of the Democratic Party, and the anti-war groups that receive the media's attention, have determined that if we simply pull out of the region all bye-gones will be bye-gones, war around the world will suddenly stop, and then we can all get together, hold hands, and skip through fields of posies singing "Imagine" by John Lennon, or kumbaya.
Yes, 4,000 American lives have been lost in this battle. Three-quarters of that number, 3,000 innocent civilians, were slaughtered in one day on September 11, 2001 by the Islamic Jihad.
The World Trade Center and Pentagon attack on 9/11 was committed by Islamists, even after the last half-dozen times that we Americans took up arms in defense of Muslims (Bosnia, Kosovo, Kuwait, etc.). The facts are that Islamic governments are savage dictatorships that force their people to live in poverty while they enjoy insanely wealthy lifestyles. These same wealthy leaders then openly blame the United States for their people's problems, breeding hate against The West in their religious schools, mosques, and government controlled media. Yet, as these leaders blame the U.S. for their problems, the United States has stepped in as the biggest financial supporter of poverty stricken Arabs.
Islamic governments pay families of homicide bombers for killing Americans and Israelis, and they consider pregnant women, babies, children, the elderly, and other non-combatant civilians to be legitimate targets. Our presence in Iraq has freed the oppressed Iraqis from that kind of indiscriminate killing by Saddam's government, as well as freeing the oppressed Iraqis from the iron grip of Saddam Hussein, additionally freeing Iraqis from the gang rape rooms and the filling of mass graves.
The liberal left demands that we pull out of Iraq and allow the country to fall into the hands of the Islamic terrorists, and their supporters (like Iran) . . . or even worse, some of them are demanding we hand over the situation to the United Nations, the same organization that scammed the poor people of Iraq out of the "food for oil" money so that they could get rich while the Iraqi populace suffered.
I am disgusted by the liberal left's investment in defeat, and their call for abandoning the region, and abandoning the people of Iraq.
But the liberal left, despite all of the progress caused by the surge, not only wants us to pull out of the region, but have decided that we have already been defeated in Iraq. Jonathan Steele, the author of Defeat: Why They Lost Iraq, actually states that Democrats should use the "Defeat" word. He states that though we have not been defeated on the battlefield, we have been defeated politically. . . yes, because of the Democratic sabatage! He states that because of the invasion now al-Qaeda is implanted in Iraq. . . they were already there, and Saddam was in close communication with al-Qaeda! War for oil? If we are there to take the Iraqi's oil, then after five years why haven't we? Why are gas prices through the roof?
And apparently appeasement isn't the avenue to take either. As Jimmy Carter was laying a wreath on Arafat's tomb, Hamas terrorists were attacking Israel! Jimmy Carter's traitorous meetings with the terrorist group, Hamas, grants legitimacy to the terrorist group, countering the national security interests of the United States. In fact, when any American citizen goes abroad and meets with America's enemies, and the enemies of our allies, it does damage.
But the idiocy of the left goes way beyond the protesters and Jimmy Carter. Believe it or not, their anti-Americanism gets worse! Remember when the movie, United 93, came out, and many people were saying that it was too early to put out such an emotion wrenching film? At that time there were many people upset by the release of the film because they felt there was still too much pain in people from the memories of that horrid day of September 11, 2001. Hollywood, or at least certain factions of it, has determined that, like the liberal left bloggers and politicians, the war is a farce, and we should pull out immediately. In fact, they have produced quite a few anti-war movies (Redacted, A Mighty Heart, Lions for Lambs, etc.), but none have done very well. So, the next plan of attack against the American War Effort against the Islamic Jihad has been put into place by these cowardly traitors. Now, for Hollywood, it is time to produce lowbrow and cringe-inducing comedies about the war against the Islamic Jihad, and even spoof comedies about that tragic day on 9/11/2001 as well.
These ill-conceived movies include an Osama bin Laden documentary by the "Super Size Me" maker, Morgan Spurlock; an absurdist slam against merchants of war featuring John Cusack; a zombie soldier flick with p0rn-star Jenna Jameson; a stoner movie about being imprisoned in and escaping Guantanamo Bay (Harold and Kumar); and believe it or not, a 9/11 parody by Uwe Boll, that literally makes fun of the day America was attacked. With the production of these comedies the post 9/11 movie goal by the liberal lefties of Hollyweird has reached an amazing new low.
Don't believe me? Watch this appalling first sequence of "Postal" by Uwe Boll:
"Postal" will be opening nationwide May 23 and is being billed as a "shock comedy." It will likely offend everyone except for Code Pink and the farthest fringe leftwing idiot. This outrageously offensive and tasteless film will hopefully result in Uwe Boll's movies being ignored by any audience here on out, but, unfortunately, that is unlikely.
As for Harold and Kumar's Escape from Guantanamo Bay? I don't find Guantanamo to be a joke. It is a serious facility being used to house serious war criminals. Even the lefties that find Gitmo Bay to be a location of torture will find the stoner movie about the prison out of line.
I can't even stomach discussing the remainder of the films being released soon. All I can say is this kind of trash, though perfectly legal in a free society such as ours, is tasteless and irresponsible. I hope America stays home when these films are released, and give them the same lack of audience as was given for the anti-war dramas recently released.
I may just go back and watch Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed again instead. At least that movie uses a little sense.
Sunday, April 20, 2008
A neurologist broke the news to us . . . "As much as a surprise it is that you survived and have healed as well as you have, your condition is worsening and it is doubtful you will live beyond the age of 30."
After news like that, Mrs. Pistachio and I had to do a lot of soul searching. I was already suffering seizures again, limping on my damaged knee, deaf in my left ear with a constant ringing in it driving me batty, suffering from neck pain because of vertebrae damage, and struggling with all of the other affects of the left temporal fracture to my head. But now, the head trauma has progressed, and the medical community proclaimed that death for me was on the horizon. . .
Listen tonight to my Personal Pistachio episode to listen to how we took the news, and what our next move as a couple would be. The show airs tonight at 9pm Eastern.
Saturday, April 19, 2008
When I recommended that people go out and see Ben Stein's Movie, Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed, which is in theaters now, the readers of Political Pistachio erupted into all kinds of opinions. In the comment section of Political Pistachio alone the following discussion took place:
Doug. Read the selfish gene by richard dawkins, it is an excellent book and explains how evolution works in an amazing way.
You can see evolution in action in the world around us eg. the flu virus, that evolves new strains every few years that humans are not naturally protected against.
lordbrownmouse Email 04.17.08 - 2:52 pm #
So you do not believe in evolution at all?
Let me ask a question. If you were able to leave earth for 100,000,000 years and then returned, would you expect to find no adaptations or changes in the animal species that live here?
lordbrownmouse Email 04.17.08 - 3:00 pm #
Obviously there are some adjustments in nature. Survival of the fittest, and all that. However, I do not subscribe to the theories of evolution beyond the basic adaptions in nature - and I am in full belief that there is a Creator. There is too much information and proven data that is in opposition to most of the Evolutionary Theories - and after all, like Creation, Evolutionary theories are unproven, hence the reason they are "theories".
Douglas V. Gibbs Email Homepage 04.17.08 - 10:32 pm #
Survival of the fittest?
a Email 04.17.08 - 10:57 pm #
But lots of basic adaptations over millions of generations is evolution. lbm
lordbrownmouse Email 04.18.08 - 10:59 am #
Certain Aspects of adaption are an inevitable part of life, but does it explain the origin of life? Can the origin of life truly be from a lack of intelligent design? Can Darwinism declare how life began without using the words "perhaps" and "may"?
Douglas V. Gibbs Email Homepage 04.18.08 - 4:04 pm #
Remember the origin of life is the simplest single cell life form you can imagine - don't you think there is a possibility that the conditions for this could occur in a planet of volcanoes, earthquakes and meteors without intellgent design?
lordbrownmouse Email 04.19.08 - 4:25 am #
Darwinism doesn't explain the origin of life, it explains the evolution of life forms - it never meant to. Science doesn't answer religious questions. Also, Darwinism is over 100 years old, and scientific methods have changed greatly since then, and there's so much
more to the laws of evolution then just Darwinism.
Survival of the fittest is the most relevant aspect of old time Darwinism.
a Email 04.19.08 - 11:30 am #
I guess what I'm trying to say is that Darwinism is no more the sum total of evolution science, than Eienstein's theory of relativity is the sum total of the laws and science of physics. Darwinism is somewhat dated.
a Email 04.19.08 - 11:39 am #
if Darwinism doesn't explain the origin of life, only the evolution of life forms - and it was never meant to, as you state, then why, pray-tell, is the book by Darwin called "The Origin of Species"? Besides, this movie is not really about whether or not certain aspects of Darwinism are acceptable or not acceptable, but that Darwinism is the only scientific theories allowed to be put forth in academia - and scientific evidence or theories regarding Intelligent Design is suppressed. . . Why is that?
Douglas V. Gibbs Email Homepage 04.19.08 - 4:25 pm #
As you can see, it sparked a lot of discussion. But why is it such a volatile issue? And why is the mere mention of an Intelligent Designer enough to get people all up in arms? Is the possibility of an Intelligent Designer that much of a threat to science? I always thought that science was about endless possibilities, and pursuing the evidence to support any idea through the scientific method. Problem is, regardless of the data and evidence acquired regarding Intelligent Design, the Scientific Community suppresses it, and blacklists any scientist that even dares mention Intelligent Design. . . in fact, the wall put up by Science against those that support the possibility of an Intelligent Designer is not much unlike the Berlin Wall built to keep out any dissenting opinion by the Communists.
So, is this an issue about Darwinism? Or is it about Freedom?
Well, all of you out there that find this an important topic that needs to be discussed, tonight on Political Pistachio Radio I am going to be joined by Andrea Shea King, Sunday Night Host of the Andrea Shea King Show on WDBO AM 580 on the Space Coast in Florida, as well as a fellow Blog Talk Radio host, to discuss this matter. We both saw the movie yesterday morning when it was released, and encourage all of those who have an interest in this issue to listen to the show, and participate in the discussion. . . Join us on Political Pistachio Radio Tonight at 10PM Eastern Time!
James Raymond is an honorably discharged veteran that was ordered to Iraq despite disabilities he suffered from his service in Afghanistan. The Leftwing Blogosphere and Leftwing e-mailers went ballistic on this. My cousin immediately sent me an e-mail stating that this kind of suffering and unfair tyrannical military actions are a direct result of Christianity, because if there was no Christianity, there would be no Islam (idiotic, I know but that is what she says). Ballbuster sent me an e-mail saying that if a**holes like me would go fight in this war that "rightwing fanatics," like me, favor so much, the injured would not have to step back into the "Hell that Bush created." Tom the Neurotic Liberal Blogger said, "And the f***ers that cheered this on.. and the f***ers that think they deserve an opinion.. and the f***ers that didn't suit up and risk getting blown to pieces.. can f**k off. The vast majority of the "right wing Loon-o-sphere" sure can type a mean game.. eh?" Wow, now that one is pure idiocy mixed with out-of-control anger . . . perhaps he needs to be lying on a couch explaining himself to a shrink.
Stating that people have no business supporting a war effort without joining the military is like arguing that people don't have a right to be against illegal immigration if they never served as a Border Patrol Agent, or that I have no business supporting a politician if I've never been in politics. That argument by the left is pure lunacy, and proof that rather than argue the issue, they would rather go into a finger pointing, name calling fit.
As for the article about James Raymond, there may be an error in the article. The article states that the "Department of Veteran's Affairs determined that he was 10 percent disabled, enabling him to receive $120 a month for the rest of his life." In the world of military medical separation, the original percentage is determined by the military branch that the service member was discharged from, and then the service member can request a re-evaluation with VA once they are discharged in the hopes of raising the percentage. For example, when I was medically separated, the U.S. Navy originally determined I was a 20% disability, but after a re-evaluation, Veteran's Affairs determined that I was a 30% disability. This leads us into the "receiving a check for the rest of his life" thing. If Mr. Raymond is only at a 10 percent disability, then the military would have provided him with a severance package, rather than a monthly award because any disability at less than 30% does not warrant a monthly amount of money. If this rule has changed, I am not aware of it, but as far as I know, that is still the rules regarding military separation. It is possible that he was discharged with a 0% disability rating from the military, and was only able to get the Veteran's Administration to raise it to 10%, but even then, it would not result in him receiving a monthly check. So, with an error like this in the article, I wonder how many other untruths there are in it.
As the article in the Buffalo News explains, in addition to a service member's active duty commitment, there is a four year inactive reserve commitment in effect after a service member separates. Any disability that is less than 30% normally does not exempt a veteran from being later deployed during this period of Inactive Reserve. I learned quite a lot about this when I looked into re-entering the military service after the act of war against the United States on 9/11/2001, but because of my percentage, I am undeployable, therefore, unfit to serve.
One of the reasons James Raymond does not want to re-deploy, aside from having to drop his current life into a holding pattern, according to the article in the Buffalo News, is because he is not sure his knee will hold up. If that is the case, when he undergoes the medical evaluation (which will be mandatory) before deployment, and if the military medical staff determines his knee is unstable enough, then they will cancel his redeployment.
I understand the injuries that Raymond have incurred. I am deaf in my left ear, as is Mr. Raymond, and I have tinnitus (constant ringing in that ear) that is sometimes so loud I can't hear what people are saying in my other, still functioning, ear. And, like James Raymond, I have a damaged knee, one that the doctor's seriously wondered whether I would ever be able to use again. I was in a wheel chair, and graduated to a cane (twice), until I was finally able to walk fairly well, as I do now, with occasional bouts of pain that cause a visible limp. In addition to that, I incurred various other injuries during my time as a sailor, enough, apparently, to make me undeployable.
I believe I was "low-balled" on my disability rating, but never fought for an even higher percentage for a number of reasons, one being that I figure those monies would be better spent on a veteran with more severe injuries than myself. I have also had two doctors recommend that I go on permanent government disability, but I have refused that as well, figuring as long as I can stand, I can work. Perhaps James Raymond was low-balled as well. Perhaps his injuries demand more than a ten percent rating. But when I consider my disabilities, and then consider what I read about James Raymond's, I wonder. I am ready to return to service (or course it would be amidst objections by my wife) if ever they were willing to take me. But he, with less disability than myself, is crying foul.
When James Raymond, like all other people who enter the U.S. Military, took that oath to defend this nation, he signed a contract. The contract included the inactive reserve period that he is now a part of. It is his obligation to fulfill the contract he signed. Or does the liberal left not place importance on contracts anymore?
Perhaps this is just more evidence of our Society of Dependency. Don't get me wrong, I understand that there are those cases where there are people that find it very difficult to fully participate in the rights that the Creator has endowed them. I recognize that there are some Americans that find themselves in such situations due to no fault of their own. These cases are rare, however, and should not dictate the direction of our society. The current societal trend is to create dependency through a welfare state that perpetuates poverty. There are no rewards for getting people off of federal programs and no rewards for getting people back into the community with full-time jobs and independent lives. As a result of this welfare society that has been created, originally by Franklin Delano Roosevelt's unconstitutional "New Deal" which actually failed seven years after it had been originally put into place, and only succeeded because of the industry created by World War II, not because of his "socialized" government programs, our poorest neighborhoods are more violent and drug-infested, and the remainder of society has begun to believe that somehow the government owes them something. This "What can I get out of government" attitude is most apparent in stories we come across about people who take the "dependency" approach to life.
To illustrate this, I wish to discuss to situations. The first is about the disability pension abuse by the California Highway Patrol which reports that nearly 10 percent of the CHP budget goes to workplace injury complaints. Among the top ranking members of the CHP, more than 80 percent file for disability pensions, and the evidence is showing that most of these are fraudulent, and they are often simply being used as mere entitlement while the recipients pursue other careers.
In contrast to that "What can I get out of government" approach to life, there is the story of a paratrooper named George Perez, who, after losing his leg in Iraq, re-enlisted and in order to be able to serve again he undertook a tireless regimen to rebuild his body so that he could rejoin his regiment in Afghanistan. He was quoted as saying, "I'm not ready to get out yet. I'm not going to let this little injury stop me. . ."
In the end, the article in the Buffalo News is not about poor James Raymond who must place his life on hold, and go out on the battlefield with a bum ear and a less-than-100% knee. This article in the Buffalo News was not written with Mr. Raymond's horrible plight in mind. The article was written with an anti-military fervor attached to it. It was designed to encourage pity for the poor soldier because of the horrendous mistreatment by the "big, bad" military. It uses comments like "...drop my life," that it had been originally explained to him ". . . unless World War III breaks out, your name is never going to be called," "He was expecting a normal life," "He can't understand how the government can send him checks for being disabled one day and then ask him to fight in a war the next," he "hasn't been able to quit smoking, a habit he picked up in the military," and that he is being "forced to join a unit with which he has no history."
The techniques worked, apparently, for my cousin, Ballbuster, and Tom all fell for the B.S. lock, drop, and barrel.
Oh, and my responses to those attempts at gaining pity by the Buffalo News article, and James Raymond? - - - Drop your life? Welcome to the world of honoring contracts with the military. You knew full well what the possibilities were when you signed up. Never going to be called up? Never say never, especially in a time of war. Expect a normal life? Are you saying the military is forcing you not to have a normal life? You signed the contract, so the decision to possibly have your normal life disrupted was originally yours. Receiving checks one day, fighting in a war the next? Hmmmm, goes back to that contract thing, first of all, and my question to you is, if you received no disability rating from the military when you were discharged (which I find unlikely, but possible), and then the VA later increased your percentage to 10 percent, did you bother letting the military human resources know about the disability rating? Did you bother to be responsible enough to ensure the information was forwarded to them? As for the smoking cigarettes part, the way that was worded it makes it sound like the writer of the article blames the military for forcing the poor guy to start such a horrible habit. That was a free choice. I began smoking in the military myself. I smoked for 21 years before I quit. And guess what? I didn't blame anyone for me starting the habit. It was me that placed that cigarette in my mouth, and it was me that lit the lighter and placed it to the cigarette. No blame game. Personal responsibility. As for being forced to join a unit he is unfamiliar with. . . please, cry me a river. Welcome to the military. The need to adjust to new and unknown situations is a normal occurance in the military. You didn't figure that out during the time you spent on active duty?
But, hey, not all people are cut-out for the military, so I sincerely hope the military does reconsider sending him back out into the field, because when I was in the military, the last thing I wanted was for my life to be in the hands of a fellow service member that did not want to be there, and therefore was not putting 110% into their duties. Whiners and criers are not fit for military service. Go home, go to school (or whatever it is you are going to do), don't poison the moral of a unit.
In closing, I do not wish to take away from James Raymond's service. Fact is, he did enlist, and he did serve in Afghanistan. I thank him for is service, and I appreciate all of our fine service members for the sacrifice they are giving. We all have our way to serve in this effort. Now that I cannot serve anymore due to my own disabilities, I blog and host my radio show on Blog Talk Radio. Others that wish to contribute to this war effort work for, or donate to, resources that support our military and provide services to our military service members. We all have a way to be a part of this effort, and comments by the left that if you support the mission you have to do join the military is idiotic. . . but, that's when you need to consider the source.
Friday, April 18, 2008
Blog Talk Radio recieved a treat during last night's Political Pistachio Radio Show. Last night on Political Pistachio Radio my guest was Angie Heslen, the Director of Operations for PCSPortico.com. PCS Portico dot com is a resource for the over 400,000 military members and their families that make a Permanent Change of Station each year, as well as a great resource for veteran's and retirees. PCS Portico dot com offers over 40 categories for business listings, and 75% of their gross revenue flows directly back into the military community through the employment of spouses, veterans, and retirees, as well as donations to several military charities. In fact, PCSPortico.com donates 10% of each advertisement sale to military charities. The site offers information on local businesses surrounding the hundreds of major U.S. military installations worldwide, and the site provides an invaluable service to active duty military servicemembers and dependents all in one site.
The interview with Angie was informative, and encouraging, and a real treat was added about halfway through the show. Angie Heslen called us from Germany, and her husband is currently deployed to Afghanistan near the Pakistan border. He called into the show to encourage his wife, thank Political Pistachio for having her on, and to say a few words about his deployment and how thankful he and his fellow troops are to members of the New Media like Political Pistachio for our support of the troops and the mission. I feel honored that such fine personnel are out there defending freedom, and protecting America. As I told him on my show, only my disabilities and non-deployable status keeps me from joining these fine men and women of the United States Military. I, myself, am a U.S. Navy Veteran.
And Thursday Night's show is not the only great one you missed. Recently we have discussed:
The One Year Anniversary of the Virginia Tech Shooting, and the discussions that have resulted,
Globalism vs. Globalization - What's the Difference?,
The Life of Charlton Heston, and the Importance of the Second Ammendment,
Tibet and China, The Year 2012, The Minnesota School of Islam, The Battle of Trafalgar if it happened today with all of the Political Correctness,
Interview With Walid Shoebat, The Islamic Terrorist that became a Christian,
And what, you may ask, is coming up on Political Pistachio Radio in the future? Well, here are a few of our upcoming shows:
The story that the liberal left has jumped all over of the Honorably discharged vet ordered back to Iraq despite disability; discussing movies "Expelled" (Ben Stein's documentary about the loss of freedom, and the suppression of any scientific discussion regarding Intelligent Design in Academia) and "Under the Same Moon" (Hollywood's gift of opinion regarding the illegal alien invasion, unfortunately, this one uses the political hot button of illegal immigration in a cleverly worked tale that demonizes White American Culture, the rule of law, and will be best remembered for the line, "First they screwed the Indians, then they screwed the slaves, and now they're screwing us Mexicans!" With the surging emotional momentum created by this film that will be most appreciated by those who share its political view, perhaps another overstuffed tale such as this will emerge for the gays too. . .jeeeez!)
Kitty Foth-Regner was a feminist in full and happy control of a god-free life - - but when her mother developed a fatal illness, she set out to determine if there really is a God - - her findings changed her life, and her politics, forever. She is the author of Heaven Without Her: A Desperate Daughter's Search for the Heart of Her Mother's Faith.. check out her book, "Heaven without Her."
Alan Keyes has announced a break with the GOP. He is a conservative, Christian, and Reaganite. . . and his influence in Conservatism is felt accross the board - Join us as we have the opportunity to interview this Great American! Read and learn more about Alan Keyes at Alan Keyes dot com.
Cross-posted on Heading Right, and the Political Pistachio Family of Sites.
Thursday, April 17, 2008
Your Military Relocation Center - Resources for Active Military, Dependents, Veterans, & Retirees!
Use below code for placing the above button on your sidebar (note: replace brackets with corresponding greater than or less than symbols for code to work):
[p][b]PCSPortico.com[/b][/p][a href="http://www.pcsportico.com/"][img height="150" alt="" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_L2yi20l2PRU/SAgtcv4qnEI/AAAAAAAABGI/9Tl5tagHat8/S230/PCSPortico+Logo" width="150" border="0" /][/a] [p][b]Your Military Relocation Center - Resources for Active Military, Dependents, Veterans, & Retirees![/b][/p]
Tonight the founder of PCSPortico.com, Angie Heslen, is my guest on Political Pistachio Radio. Please join us live at 10pm Eastern, or catch the archive later.
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
Ben Stein's EXPELLED: NO INTELLIGENCE ALLOWED
The following is the Producer's Synopsis:
“For decades now, Neo-Darwinism has maintained a stranglehold within public education, suppressing all other theories on the origins of life - especially those that hint of a ‘designer.’ Oxford professor Richard Dawkins, an evolutionary biologist and author of The God Delusion states, ‘Certainly I see the scientific view of the world as incompatible with religion.’ Students are being bombarded with such propaganda throughout their education; despite the fact that MOST Americans do NOT believe we're the result of ‘random chance.’ Well, FINALLY help is on the way. ‘EXPELLED: No Intelligence Allowed,’ is an upcoming feature film in which host Ben Stein (‘Ferris Bueller's Day Off’) goes on a quest to expose the suppression by science's anti-theist elite, and unveil new scientific facts that may suggest evidence of intelligent design in the universe.
WHAT—Ben Stein’s heroic and, at times, shocking journey confronting the world's top scientists, educators and philosophers, regarding the persecution of the many by an elite few. Ben travels the world on his quest, and learns an awe-inspiring truth that bewilders him, then angers him and then spurs him to action!
WHY—Ben realizes that he has been ‘Expelled,’ and that educators and scientists are being ridiculed, denied tenure and even fired for the ‘crime’ of merely believing that there might be evidence of ‘design’ in nature, and that perhaps life is not just the result of accidental, random chance.
Filming locations: Berlin, Brussels, California, Chicago, Dallas, Galapagos Islands, London, Madrid, New York City, Paris, Rome, Washington D.C.”
Read More About The Production Information, Interviews, and Specifics at Christian Answers Dot Net.
And here are a couple trailers (note, they were put out when the release date was thought to be in February of this year). The second video is over seven minutes long.
And since we are on the subject, this little video called The Watchmaker.
Monday, April 14, 2008
What you see is what you get.
Or is it?
Traditional explanations do not always explain history, the economy, or political agendas. It is difficult for the casual observer to recognize the complexity of the political realm, therefore more often than not the average citizen places their faith on sources of information they have come to trust over the years.
But what does a person do when those sources, it turns out, are not trustworthy?
This is where thought, and I mean Serious Thought, comes into the equation.
As a young man the threat of globalization concerned me. I recognized that society, our world, due to the growth of communications and trade, is becoming a global environment. Globalization does not necessarily mean that a nation cannot continue to be nationalistic. Japan has based her economy on exports for 50 years without ceasing to be one of the most nationalistic and culturally distinctive nations on earth.
The globalization of our world is not internationalism, or globalism. Globalism and Globalization are distinctly different, but the Globalists encourage the confusion. They wish you to believe that there is no stopping Globalism, an ideology based on the liquidation of nations, masquerading as globalization in order to gain sympathy by feigning inevitability. Globalism is a deliberate political agenda, no more inevitable than communism, liberalism, or socialism. Its key components are the United Nations, free-trade extremism, the European Union, and mass immigration. Each of these pieces of the puzzle are political constructs that could be eliminated tomorrow if we had the will to carry through such an endeavor. This is in opposition to the inevitability of Globalization, a process being better enabled by technology and information.
Globalism, contrary to what the proponents of the ideology proclaims, is not a fruitful co-operation between nations. Globalism is a single government that eliminates the nation states, downgrading them to mere territories.
I have repeatedly told people that I am a conservative, and there are many aspects of Republicans like Bush that I disagree with. One of those aspects is the globalistic intentions of the "neo-conservatives." Neo-cons, more often than not, are former liberals who have decided that conservatism can be promoted through big government. They often support open borders, benefiting immigrants at the expense of citizens and nourish big government by importing poverty and other social pathologies. As a result, the identification of national governments decline. Britain has learned this under the European Union. This kind of government promotes the growth of more distant, more autocratic, and less accountable authorities. The erosion of a nation follows, forcing the country to become a territorial part of a bloated centralized government entity not unlike the suffocation of Russia under the dead hand of the Soviet state.
Because of the "neo-conservatism" of George W. Bush, globalism has blossomed, but don't be fooled into believing that neo-conservatism and globalism are identical. Although neoconservatism seems to be more often than not globalist, it is not intrinsically identical with globalism. Neoconservatism is conservatism corrupted by globalism.
Globalist unity made sense when it came to winning the Cold War, and so the method was utilized. But after the Cold War ended, the ideas did not adapt, dragging us into a worldwide military presence in battles beyond those we have chosen to engage in due to National Security interests. Globalism is corporation driven, for big business could care less if there was a dismantling of viable nation-states. Countries are merely markets to them. Nothing more, nothing less.
However, the globalists did not anticipate the Islamic Jihad.
Like Globalism, the Islamists desire world domination, though their methods are more obvious and violent than those of the Globalist Agenda. Like Globalism, the Islamic Jihad is contemptuous of any culture that cannot be bought and sold, or refuses to accept Islamism. Globalism desires a homogeneous commercial pop culture designed to narcotize docile consumers and make the rootless cosmopolitanism that it produces seem sophisticated. Philosophically, globalism views culture as an arbitrary particularity or as mere entertainment. Islam desires a homogeneous religious culture designed to control the people.
Globalism does not value the distinct cultures of the world, nor does Islamism. Globalism is primarily interested in Third-World cultures as a means to subvert the historic cultures of the First World, and though it did not anticipate the Islamic Jihad, it is prepared to use Islamism to its fullest potential.
Globalism is the key successor to Marxism, and the globalists have realized that like Marxism, they need global military domination to impose their vision. However, a strong American military makes such a plan difficult. How can a global military domination through an agency such as the United Nations dominate with the United States Military still intact?
This is where the liberal arm of Globalism enters the picture. In order to fit into the Globalist's plans, the United States must be weakened, made ready to accept our global position in the big picture.
Only Nationalism can combat such an insidious plan.
Sunday, April 13, 2008
Friday, April 11, 2008
China is a large, growing, industrialized nation hungry for natural resources and energy. After all, energy and a robust economy goes hand in hand.
Tibet is a spiritually driven microculture. Tibet's religion, Buddhism, is one that is seen to seek peace and harmony with nature.
Put the two of them, China and Tibet, together and you have a severe conflict.
Tibet was Chinese territory against the will of the Tibetan people until the early 1900's. The Thirteenth Dalai Lama, having returned from India in January 1913, issued a formal declaration of the complete independence of Tibet. After the communists gained full control of neighboring China in 1949, the Red Army set its sights on Tibet, invading Tibet in September of 1949. On November 11, 1950, the Tibetan Government protested to the United Nations against the Chinese aggression, but the General Assembly moved to postpone the issue. The Chinese then carried out plans to turn Tibet into a colony of China disregarding the strong resistance by the Tibetan people. On September 9, 1951 thousands of Chinese troops marched into Lhasa. The forcible occupation of Tibet was marked by systematic destruction of monasteries, suppression of religion, denial of political freedom, widespread arrests and imprisonment and massacre of innocent men, women and children. In 1959, a failed uprising by the Tibetans forced the Dalai Lama to flee and take refuge in nearby India, now the seat of Tibet's government-in-exile.
Remember how earlier I mentioned that China is a large, growing, industrialized nation hungry for natural resources and energy? In recent years, to help quench their growing appetite for energy and resources, the Chinese government has built huge dams for harnessing the hydroelectric energy potential of Tibet, and has built a railroad into the region for transporting large mineral deposits from under the Tibetan Plateau. Last year Beijing announced that the zinc, copper and lead found in Tibet to be worth about $128 billion.
According to Tibetans, China is fencing nomads off traditional grazing lands, destabilizing slopes, degrading the land, and ruining their environment. Even though the Dalai Lama is not demanding independence for Tibet, he is being characterized by China as a wolf in a monk's robe. Owning his likeness in Tibet, or unfurling the Tibetan flag, is illegal under Chinese law. Human Rights Watch counts over 600 prisoners, mostly clergy, in jail for criticizing Chinese-government policies.
Now, the Tibetan protesters are using the 2008 Beijing Olympics to air their grievances to the world, and the world community has responded. In the media I have seen the images of protesters in France and San Francisco. The press is stating that now is the time to confront China on their human-rights abuses.
My question is this: Why now? Why not before? Where were these protesters when China was murdering millions for the last sixty years? Suddenly it's fashionable to protest Communist China? Are they suddenly not the good Communists anymore? Of all the times in history for the world to unite in protest against China, why during the Olympics? Isn't the Olympics about sport? Isn't the Olympics about setting aside politics and competing on the field?
Don't get me wrong, I am just as angry with China and her treatment of Tibet as the rest of the world. Their human rights history against Christians is horrendous as well. The Communist Revolution, and the following years, took millions of lives. And deep down I feel it is comforting to see a brutal dictatorship that is seeking to use the Olympics for its own cynical ends to get a black eye like this. Anytime a tyrannical government receives crummy publicity, and the voices of freedom begin to ring out, it is a good thing. But where were the voices before this current crisis? Rather than ruining the spectacle of the torch run, why weren't people demanding China to straighten out their human rights positions before?
Amid calls for President Bush to boycott the Opening Ceremonies, the president has responded by not committing to attend the Opening Ceremonies by saying that, "The exact dates haven't been determined." This, I believe, is a wise move, for he is not offending the Chinese government prematurely, but he is also not condoning the Chinese government's policies. However, in the end, I believe the U.S. should attend the opening ceremonies. First of all, a symbolic action like the boycott is only effective if followed up with other actions, hammered one upon the other until the legitimacy of the authoritarian government is undermined in the eyes of the people, and is forced to reassess its policies. I don't believe this administration, or the American people, are capable to such a long term commitment against China. The American people have proven their unwillingness to hang in there for the long haul by their response to the War on Terror. Besides, after all, the Olympics are supposed to be above politics. Not about politics.
Though, I have to admit, this international outcry may be what is needed to help push the criticisms of China to a crescendo, and serve as a catalyst towards change in China - perhaps on the same line with the demise of the old U.S.S.R. - but don't hold your breath.
Learn More At:
Human Rights Watch
Friends of Tibet: History of Tibet
Tibet: High Ground
Dalai Lama does not support Olympics boycott
Thursday, April 10, 2008
Improv Everywhere causes scenes of chaos and joy in public places. The pranks range from a line of human dominoes to a cell phone symphany. The group has executed over 70 missions involving thousands of undercover agents.
Their latest mission was just too good not to discuss. The joy of the day, and the lifelong memories caused by the event makes this group a favorite of Political Pistachio's.
Imagine the scene. It is a typical day for Little League Baseball. The kids are on the field, the parents are sitting in their fold-out chairs on the grass to watch the game, and then suddenly the stands begin to fill with fans, NBC coverage erupts, vendors handing out free peanuts appear . . . Well, needless to say, it was The Best Game Ever, but instead of me ruining the tale, let me hand it over to the guys over at Improv Everywhere (with video to boot).
Read about this amazing prank of joyful magnitude HERE.
Wednesday, April 09, 2008
Walid Shoebat was born in Bethlehem of Judea, Israel. As a young man, he became a member of the PLO (Palestinian Liberation Organization), and participated in acts of terror and violence against Israel. He was later imprisoned in the Russian Compound, Jerusalem's central prison for incitement and violence against Israel.
After his release from the Russian Compound, Walid Shoebat continued his life of terrorism, violence, and rioting in Bethlehem and on the Temple Mount. After entering the United States, he worked as a counselor for the Arab Student Organization at Loop College in Chicago while continuing his anti-Israel activities. During that time he became disenchanted with the PLO as being to moderate, and joined the Muslim Brotherhood (forerunner of the terrorist organization Hamas) and was trained for the expected coming Islamic Jihad in America.
In 1993 Walid experienced a spiritual journey after a challenge from his Christian wife. While studying both the Holy Bible and secular history he came to the realization that all he had been taught about Jews and Christians was a lie. Convinced he had been on the side of evil, he became an advocate for his former enemy, and against terrorism.
After speaking around the world and in the media about his life and experiences, as well as his unique position and insight as someone who was part of the Jihadist movements, there are forces challenging his credibility in an attempt to silence him. Tonight Walid Shoebat joins Political Pistachio to discuss these recent attacks against his credibility. Join us at 10pm Eastern, 7pm Pacific on Political Pistachio Radio.
Tuesday, April 08, 2008
How vulnerable is the United States to a cyber attack like the attack on Estonia's government websites, which many believe emanated from Russia, that cripped their sites for nearly two months in 2007? Such an attack would be considered an act of war by most.
Our society has become so dependent upon computer technology that an attack against America's computer networks could cripple the U.S. in ways probably not much different than the "Fire-Sale" portrayed in Live Free Or Die Hard. Even considering the possibility of such an attack against America encourages one to ask, how prepared are we for a major cyber attack if it should come?
The attack against Estonia in 2007 crippled Web sites operated by Estonian government ministries, banks, media outlets and other companies. The "denial of service" attacks swamped Web sites with so many hits they were forced to shut down.
Coincidentally, the attacks came when the U.S. and other governments are in the process of mulling how to respond to cyber attacks.
At the time of the attack against Estonia, the country's officials stated that it traced much of the traffic that inundated its Web sites to Russian computers. The government also said it found on the Internet instructions in Russian on how to carry out the action. After initially accusing the Kremlin of orchestrating the attack, the Estonian government later softened that position, alleging the attacks came from Russia, but that it had no evidence implicating the Kremlin.
Such attacks, then, are a serious threat to the security of our country, and with Russia, China, North Korea, and the Islamic Jihad showing animosity toward the United States, it would be irresponsible to deny the possibility of such an attack from one of those sources anytime soon.
NATO views the threat as a serious possibility, and has boosted its cyber-attack response force. Apparently, the attack on Estonia's systems last year was enough to convince NATO that cyber attacks are a very clear threat, and the organization has responded accordingly with an efficient and expedient way of hardening its own systems.
The United States has taken the threat seriously as well, creating a cyberspace command through the United States Air Force that is prepared to wage war on the cyber-battlefield. Our nation recognizes that there are new threats out there, and that as a nation we need to be prepared to defend ourselves on a virtual battlefield. The Air Force Cyber Command is the only military force of its kind, which defends our nation from over 3 million cyber threats per day. Our national security extends beyond the leaking border and the war abroad. Knowing that we have this internet vulnerablility, the United States seems to have taken precautions so that they may deal with cyberspace attacks.
So it cycles back around to the question: Are we truly ready to answer the call against a major cyber attack should it come?
It seems like we are prepared, but only time will tell if we have prepared enough.
Monday, April 07, 2008
I am man enough to admit you are correct, and my excuse is lame - I had no time to write a post and threw that baby up there without considering the factual (or lack thereof) content. However, smear tactics was not my intention, and I regret that it came across as such.
I often do not have the opportunity to proof-read much either, though of late I have had a little more time (until a couple days ago anyway) so poor writing and silly posts like e-mail re-treads pop up from time to time due to my busy schedule (once again, a lame excuse, but true) - - - I also regret the failure to accurately relay factual information on the "Closet" post in which Tom the Liberal Blogger set the record straight by locating the post that caused Chuck to be shut down - it turned out to be because he identified himself, which I guess as an active military servicemember doing so and spouting political opinion like he was doing is a no-no.
Thank you for your attention to detail where mine fell short.
A large part of my busy schedule and lack of time for writing has to do with my being (of late) in and out of doctor's offices. . . I will explain, hopefully, someday in the future. I'm not one to normally discuss my health, so I will leave it at that for now. My health is not an excuse for my failure to bring Political Pistachio readers the best I can provide, just a quick explanation. However, as my time available for blogging increases, so will the quality, and due to unforseen circumstances my time available is increasing ten-fold real soon.
Sunday, April 06, 2008
The e-mail poster wrote: I have no idea who wrote this but it does leave room for thought?? I wonder where got all his money ?
LET ME SEE IF I HAVE THIS STRAIGHT:
HIS FATHER WAS A KENYAN, MUSLIM, BLACK. WE HAVE SEEN PICTURES OF HIS "AFRICAN FAMILY".
HIS MOTHER IS A KANSAN, ATHIEST, WHITE.
WHERE ARE THE PICTURES OF HIS KANSAN WHITE MOTHER AND THE WHITE GRANDPARENTS WHO RAISED HIM?
HIS FATHER DESERTED HIS MOTHER AND HIM WHEN HE WAS VERY YOUNG AND THE FATHER WENT BACK TO HIS OTHER FAMILY IN KENYA.
HIS MOTHER MARRIED AN INDONESIAN MUSLIM AND TOOK HIM TO JAKARTA WHERE HE WAS SCHOOLED IN A MUSLIM SCHOOL.
HIS MOTHER RETURNED TO HAWAII AND HE WAS RAISED BY HIS WHITE KANSAN GRANDPARENTS.
HE LATER WENT TO THE BEST HIGH DOLLAR SCHOOLS! HOW?
HE LIVES IN A $1.4 MILLION DOLLAR HOUSE THAT HE ACQUIRED THROUGH A DEAL WITH A WEALTHY FUND RAISER! HOW?
HE "WORKED" AS A CIVIL RIGHTS ACTIVIST IN CHICAGO- HAS NEVER HELD A PRODUCTIVE JOB.
THE PRESIDENCY IS NOT A CIVIL RIGHTS POST NOR IS IT SUBJECT TO AFFIRMATIVE ACTION SET ASIDES!
HE ENTERED POLITICS AT THE STATE LEVEL AND THEN THE NATIONAL LEVEL WHERE HE HAS MINIMAL EXPERIENCE!
HE IS PROUD OF HIS "AFRICAN HERITAGE" BUT IT SEEMS THAT HIS ONLY AFRICAN CONNECTION WAS THAT
HIS AFRICAN FATHER GOT A WHITE GIRL PREGNANT AND DESERTED HER.
I DIDN'T KNOW THAT SPERM CARRIED A "CULTURAL" GENE. WHERE IS THE PRIDE IN HIS WHITE CULTURE?
HE GOES TO AN "AFROCENTRIC" CHURCH THAT HATES WHITES, HATES JEWS, AND BLAMES AMERICA FOR ALL THE
WORLDS PERCEIVED FAULTS AND THEN REPEATEDLY COVERS UP FOR THE PASTOR AND THE CHURCH.
HE CLAIMS THAT HE COULD NOT CONFRONT HIS PASTOR BUT HE WANTS US TO BELIEVE THAT HE CAN
CONFRONT NORTH KOREA AND IRAN, RIGHT!!!
YEAH, I THINK I SEE HOW HE COULD BE A UNITER AND BRING US TOGETHER, I THINK THE HOPE IS THAT HE
HOPES NO ONE WILL PUT THE PIECES TOGETHER.
ONE ALSO WONDERS WHERE ALL HIS MONEY HAS COME FROM. AFTER ONLY A SHORT TIME IN ILLINOIS POLITICS
AND ONE TERM AS A US SENATOR, HOW CAN HE AFFORD HIS EXPENSIVE LIFE-STYLE?
MAYBE HE GOT ONE OF THOSE SUB-PRIME MORTGAGE LOANS.
Things that make you go hmmmmmmmmmm.