::::Just waiting for the pots and pans to fly now....::::
It's pop quiz time, folks. Question #1: what's the progressive message? Question #2: what's the conservative message? Question #3: Was question 1 or 2 easier to answer?Mind you that Matt Entenza's "Minnesota 2020" prides itself as being a "non partisan" progressive think tank, yet somehow goes out of its way to make it a point to bash Republicans.
Unfortunately, the answer to question 3 is question 2. Everyone knows the conservative message: no taxes, no gay marriage, no immigration, and no abortions. The conservative message isn’t the problem.
No, the problem is the progressive message. We don't have one. It's not a degree of cogency, either. Progressives lack a single, coherent message.
A great many progressive activists will disagree with me, citing human rights, reproductive rights, civil rights, single-payer healthcare, and green transit. They're correct but they make my point. A panoply of diffuse issues, no matter how well intentioned, is not a broad, resonant progressive message.
For the past forty-odd years, conservatives have managed message creation, moving from fringe to mainstream. Looking toward the 2008 legislative session, I was curious about their policy and political positioning. So, I toured Minnesota's conservative advocacy organizations’ websites, studying their issues and message.
Frankly, it's what I expected.
The Minnesota Family Council and Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life oppose gay marriage and abortions while obsessing over sexuality. The Center for the American Experiment's most recent pieces advocate for school vouchers and employer-based health insurance. Minnesota Majority exhorts an anti-immigrant enforcement agenda. The Free Market Institute, the 501c3 arm of the Tax Payers League, opposes taxes and proposes "borrow and spend" transportation funding.
The conservative policy advocacy organizations are parts of a whole. They could be a divisive, disastrous mix yet they create a cohesive conservative message. While conservative cooperation is straining at the seams, their political leadership maintains their centralized message.
A smart message starts with a smart goal: moving Minnesota forward. When our message exceeds the sum of its parts, we succeed. Until that moment, it's just wishful thinking.Now where have I heard that one before?
IMO, we need to go back to state nominating conventions, with the Party faithful made up of locally-elected delegates determining who they will support. The result will be an election untainted by agents provacateurs on both sides, and will be a move toward more ideologically pure candidates.
IMO, the whole primary system is a sham, and needs to be re-worked on a national basis.
With the ability of both parties to gerry-rig the others’ primary elections, the outcomes have absolutely nothing to do with the will of the rank and file of the respective parties.
I heard yesterday that McCain was counting on the support of democrats and independents. He knows he can’t win via the rank and file of the Republican party.
The rank and file, via the primary process, is effectively disenfranchised.
A copy of the eulogy I delivered at my father's wake..
A Life, Simply Led.
A life, simply led, can have a profound effect on the world. Take my dad, for instance.
He was no Nobel laureate; he had a 10th grade education. Yet he knew things about people and how to relate to people that all the Masters and PhDs in the world couldn’t teach you. And teach me, he did. He had a simple way about him. Never one to put on airs; Leo had a down to earth sense of humor and a welcoming personality that immediately attracted people to him. Here are some of the valuable lessons that we learned as kids from Leo:
Lesson Number One: Be yourself and friends will come.
When I was young, I, for one, couldn’t understand this attraction and affection that others had for my dad. Of course, as many a young lad does, I had him pegged in this “dad box;” and, as is the case with many a young lad, I was certain that even if I didn’t quite know everything there was to know in the world (though, at the tender young age of 15, I was certain that I was near that point), I was most certainly smarter than my dad. I was too young, too foolish, and too proud to realize and recognize just how wise this guy with a 10th grade education actually was, and just how big a heart a man could really have.
Lesson Number 2: Family comes first, and foremost; nothing is more important.
Lesson Number 3: Work hard; sacrifice; provide for your family.
From working 16 hour days, 7 days a week, for five dollars a week at the local Jewel; to delivering mail, while walking two routes per day, including Christmas, during his 12-year tenure in the Post Office; to driving countless miles away from home during his 25-year tenure as a truck driver; to taking seemingly menial cleaning jobs when there were no other jobs to be had; we as children never went a day when we were wanting for food nor the basic necessities of life. And no matter what he did, no matter how seemingly menial the task, my dad was proud of his work. Providing for his family was a responsibility that Leo embraced. Our education was also very important to Dad; and he made sure that there was enough money saved so that the tuition for all five of us kids to go through St. Mary of
Lesson Number 4: The Art of Life is embodied in Service to Others
During our growing up years, Dad worked many hours providing for his family; yet he also managed to find a lot of time to be active in our lives and to volunteer to serve others. When he wasn’t driving semi loads across the country, he would often be driving us kids to various functions, such as ballet and music lessons. Dad was an assistant Cub Master for our local boy-scout troop, and was instrumental in making sure that a lot of working class kids got to take the ride of their lifetimes in a turbo-prop airplane around the
The entire city of
Even during his relatively short time at Spring Meadows, Dad took the time to know everyone of the 150+ residents by name. When I came to visit with the residents after his death, I was told that Leo, being true to his nature, was the hub of social activity at Spring Meadows. He was the one, more than any other resident there, I am told, who would get people together. If there was a new resident, Leo would come up to the resident and say, “You’re new here. Why don’t we talk,” and would immediately do his level best to make the new resident feel at home. The people there were visibly shaken at the news of Leo’s death, for they lost a dear friend as much as we lost a father.
Our father’s life was indeed a life simply led. Yet such profound lessons were taught to us as his children that one couldn’t simply learn in any sort of a formal way. In leading by example, our father left a legacy that will be difficult for any of us to match; yet, in emulating him, and in teaching our children through the same examples he gave, his legacy of leaving the world a better place than he found it will beyond a doubt have taken root and will flourish for many years to come.
Expectant mother Lorraine Allard learned the devastating news that she was in the advanced stages of liver cancer when she was four months pregnant, according to the Daily Mail.
Allard, of St. Olaves in the U.K., had a choice: Delay treatment to save her baby, or terminate the pregnancy to save herself.
She chose the former, waiting until the fetus was viable before scheduling a Caesarian section.
"If I am going to die, my baby is going to live," Allard told her husband, Martyn, according to the Mail.
The baby came a week early and Allard, 33, gave birth on Nov. 18 to a healthy but premature boy she named Liam.
Exactly two months later, Allard died. She'd begun chemotherapy just after her son's birth. But in the end, it was too late.
Doctors believe Allard had bowel cancer that had gone undetected for years, eventually spreading to her liver. She realized something was wrong after she began suffering from stomach cramps, and tests revealed that her liver was covered with malignant tumors, the Mail reported.
"The doctors said they couldn't do anything because she was pregnant," Martyn Allard, 34, told the Mail. "She told them straight away they were not going to get rid of it. She'd have lost the will to fight."
The courageous and selfless mother was able to get out of bed and hold her tiny son several times beside his incubator before her death. Liam is the Allards' fourth child and first boy; his sisters are Leah, 10; Amy, 8; and Courtney, 20 months.
"Lorraine was positive all the way through," Martyn Allard told the paper. "She had strength for both of us. I can't begin to describe how brave she was. Towards the end we knew things weren't going well, but she was overjoyed that she had given life to Liam."
Bill Delays Oil Exploration for Polar Bear ListingYeah, asswipe. Just like all the damage that the Alaska pipeline did to those poor caribou.
By Monisha Bansal
CNSNews.com Staff Writer
January 21, 2008
(CNSNews.com) - Environmentalists welcomed a bill introduced by a House Democrat last week that would delay the sale of land in Alaska for oil exploration. Environmentalists believe the Interior Department wants to avoid classifying the polar bear as an endangered species until the land -- which is polar bear habitat -- is sold.
"The only thing keeping pace with the melting of the sea ice is the breakneck speed with which the Department of the Interior is rushing to approve oil and gas activities in polar bear habitat," said Kassie Siegel, director of the Center for Biological Diversity's Climate, Air and Energy Program, a liberal organization.
"This oil and gas sale must not proceed, because the impacts to polar bears have not been considered," Siegel said.
“The American Republic will endure until politicians realize they can bribe the people with their own money.” -Alexis De Tocqueville
Politicians, especially since FDR, have long known that they can bribe the people with their own money. But since FDR, a healthy majority of the American people couldn’t be bought. They loved freedom, less government, and a secure nation more than the baubles and breadcumbs that may have flowed from Washington, D.C.
The nation, on the whole, was a conservative nation.
Nothing illustrated this more than the wholesale acceptance of Ronald Wilson Reagan in the 1980s, and of his legacy as borne in the Contract with America that launched the Republican Congressional revolution of 1994.
And nothing spelled out the repudiation of the conservative principles on which this nation was founded than the third place finish of Fred Thompson in South Carolina.
On point after point, from immigration, to national security, to taxes and to life itself, Fred Thompson mirrored the conservative ideals that, when put into practice, have been proven to be so effective in governing our nation since the penning of the Federalist Papers.
If there was anywhere in this nation where it couldn’t have been more clear, it would have been in South Carolina; traditionally a bastion of clear thinking, small government conservatives.
Yet John McCain, in every sense an opportunistic political populist with a liberal voting record as long as the Mississippi, ran the table.
Newt Gingrich caught a lot of flack when he proclaimed that Reaganesque conservatism was in its death throes, and that politicians needed to embrace a more “centrist” approach.
He was right in the sense that South Carolina is current living proof that Reaganesque conservatism is, if anything, on life support.
Maybe Rush Limbaugh was right last week when he said that it took a Jimmy Carter to give us Ronaldus Magnus.
Perhaps 2012 will be the year of Fred… if the liberals haven’t run us into the ground by then.
I was listening to Rush Limbaugh yesterday, and believe me folks, he endorsed Fred Thompson in every way but Sunday. He kept biting his lip from out and out endorsing him, but he went so far as to suggest that it may be better to put up with four years of Hillary or Obama, then 8 years of Huckabee; stating, “It took Jimmy Carter to give us Ronald Reagan.”
Rush knows what’s at stake; he knows that the very future of conservatism is on the line in this election.
Rush knows that Fred Thompson is the only conservative choice in the race.
(January 18) The day before South Carolina’s Republican Primary, the Rasmussen Poll of the state shows the frontrunners as McCain (24%), Huckabee (24%), Romney (18%) and Thompson (16%). Of the four, according to NumbersUSA President Roy Beck’s Presidential Grid that rates each candidate in 16 immigration categories, Fred Thompson scores the highest. And Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) scores the lowest overall. The ratings are based on how well a candidate’s immigration stances would protect American workers, taxpayers, communities, infrastructure, individual freedom and the environment.
SENECA, S.C. --(AP) -- Republican U.S. presidential candidate Fred Thompson on Friday defended the detention of foreign nationals at the U.S. Navy base in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba.
''The last thing in the world we need is a bunch of enemy combatants over here in our court system,'' the former Tennessee senator said during a radio interview in front of a couple hundred people at a restaurant.
He said closing the detention facility would allow prisoners to demand rights given to U.S. citizens and would not help ``buy off world opinion.''
The Guantánamo remarks were a slap at Arizona Sen. John McCain, the winner of the New Hampshire primary and former Vietnam-held prisoner-of-war, who has called for the facility to be shuttered in part because it is harming the United States' global reputation.
Yeah. Raise taxes. That'll stimulate the economy. NOT.
Bush started this year saying he did not know whether a stimulus plan was needed and if it was, he wanted to make sure that Congress made his first-term tax cuts permanent.
But the deteriorating economic situation has now convinced him of the need to offer a stimulus package. Democrats are letting it be known that if Bush is serious about moving quickly, he will need to delink the proposal from his drive to make his tax cuts permanent.
Fred Thompson is mad.
And so am I.
What do you do when you're desperate, when you know that you are lacking in substance and devoid of serious gravitas?
Why run push polls against your Republican opponent, of course:
Not only does Huckabee govern like a democrat; he's campaigning like one.
Fred Thompson Gets Mad
By Joel Achenbach
PROSPERITY, S.C. -- You rarely see Fred Thompson get too riled about anything, but steam was near about shooting from his ears today when he heard at a campaign stop that some of his supporters had received "push poll" calls from a group supporting Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee.
At a steak house in this small town west of Columbia, a man in the small crowd told Thompson that many people had gotten such calls in the past 24 hours. Thompson asked anyone who had received such a call to raise his or hand. At least a dozen hands shot up. The former senator said he'd heard of push polls accusing him of supporting partial birth abortion.
"They're taking the most outrageous, easily disproved things that they can come up with. It's amazing to me. Its so ham-handed," Thompson said. "I had a 100 percent pro-life voting record over 8 years."
Trey Taylor, 41, told The Post that he'd gotten a call in which, after he'd revealed his preference for Thompson, a recorded voice said Thompson had lobbied on behalf of a "radical" pro-abortion organization. The recording then cited Huckabee's anti-abortion record.
Speaking with reporters, Thompson looked like he was ready to strip the bark off Huckabee. He suggested that Huckabee isn't trying to "win the legitimate way" by focusing on the issues. At the most recent debate, he said, "I confronted him man to man, with regard to the issues. This is the response I get."
The scene is a living room in a modest home, in a small
suburb. June Cleaver, Ward’s liberal-leaning wife, is vacuuming, while wearing her full compliment of high heels, a flowing dress, and string of pearls. Ward Cleaver is sitting down in his recliner, relaxing after a hard day’s work, reading the Strib and cussing at Nick Coleman’s latest article. Suddenly, there’s an abrupt knock. Four bratty neighborhood kids await outside the door… Minneapolis
ST. PAUL, Minn. - In an effort to help Sen. Larry Craig, the American Civil Liberties Union is arguing that people who have sex in public bathrooms have an expectation of privacy.Yeah. Riiiight.
Craig, of Idaho, is asking the Minnesota Court of Appeals to let him withdraw his guilty plea to disorderly conduct stemming from a bathroom sex sting at the Minneapolis airport.
The ACLU filed a brief Tuesday supporting Craig. It cited a Minnesota Supreme Court ruling 38 years ago that found that people who have sex in closed stalls in public restrooms "have a reasonable expectation of privacy."
That means the state cannot prove Craig was inviting an undercover officer to have sex in public, the ACLU wrote.
Alas, if this comes to pass, I have only two words for the fate of humanity:
Microsoft submitted a patent application in the US for a “unique monitoring system” that could link workers to their computers. Wireless sensors could read “heart rate, galvanic skin response, EMG, brain signals, respiration rate, body temperature, movement facial movements, facial expressions and blood pressure”, the application states.
The system could also “automatically detect frustration or stress in the user” and “offer and provide assistance accordingly”. Physical changes to an employee would be matched to an individual psychological profile based on a worker’s weight, age and health. If the system picked up an increase in heart rate or facial expressions suggestive of stress or frustration, it would tell management that he needed help.
A new study finds that Sen. Norm Coleman voted with a majority of fellow Republicans just 64 percent of the time last year on the eve of a tough re-election battle, his lowest rating since entering the Senate in 2003.So, Senator Coleman, you believe that 30 percent of the Republican party agenda of low taxes, energy independence, and smaller government is not in the best interests of the citizens of the state of Minnesota?
Looked at another way, the Minnesota senator opposed his party 36 percent of the time, putting him fifth among GOP senators, behind party moderates Olympia Snowe (Maine), Arlen Specter (Pennsylvania), Susan Collins (Maine) and Gordon Smith (Oregon). [NOTE: Norm Coleman voted against his party more than CHUCK HAGEL--ed]
The party unity ratings were published by Congressional Quarterly, a Capitol Hill publication.
The 64 percent rating follows 77 percent ratings in 2006 and 2005, 91 percent in 2004, and 92 percent in 2003. Coleman's fifth-place rating in 2007 is his highest, but not by much. In 2005, his opposition voting record was 6th among Republicans. In 2004, he was 13th in the category, his highest figure. He was 8th in 2003 and 2006.
Two of Coleman's Democratic challengers said Coleman is doing what he can to help his own re-election, not Minnesotans. A spokesman for Coleman counters that he's consistently been an "independent Republican" looking out for the state's best interests.
The Pork King Keeps His CrownThe new earmark disclosure rules put into effect by Congress confirm the pre-eminence of Representative John Murtha at procuring eye-popping chunks of pork for contractors he helped put in business in Johnstown, Pa. The Pennsylvania Democrat, a power player on defense appropriations, exudes pride, not embarrassment, for delivering hundreds of millions of dollars in largesse to district beneficiaries. They, in turn, requite with hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign donations.
Mr. Murtha led all House members this year, securing $162 million in district favors, according to the watchdog group Taxpayers for Common Sense.
In 1991, Mr. Murtha used a $5 million earmark to create the National Defense Center for Environmental Excellence in Johnstown to develop anti-pollution technology for the military. Since then, it has garnered more than $670 million in contracts and earmarks. Meanwhile it is managed by another contractor Mr. Murtha helped create, Concurrent Technologies, a research operation that somehow was allowed to be set up as a tax-exempt charity, according to The Washington Post. Thanks to Mr. Murtha, Concurrent has boomed; the annual salary for its top three executives averages $462,000.There’s been no report of Mr. Murtha’s profiting personally. “This is about jobs,” the congressman insists. But the Murtha operation — which has become a model for other entrepreneurial lawmakers — is a gross example of quid pro quo Washington. Every one of the 26 beneficiaries of Mr. Murtha’s earmarks in last year’s defense budget made contributions to his campaign kitty, a total of $413,250, according to the newspaper Roll Call.
Oh really?Prepared to sell his storyLacking the media swarm, and apparently with no place to be, Peterson chatted about a range of subjects, from his love of flying to the actor he'd most like to see play him in the movie version of his life.
"I look a lot like Denzel [Washington]," he joked.
"I don't think either of us want to inject race or gender in this campaign. We are running as individuals, we are making our cases to the American people, and it's imperative that we get the record and the facts straight because people are entitled to have that information."And still later in the same interview,
SEN. CLINTON: "Well, you know, I don't think that either of us should use gender. I don't think this campaign is about gender, and I sure hope it's not about race. It needs to be about the individuals. Each of us is running for the highest position, the most difficult job in the world."Yet, early in Hillary's campaign,
So which is it, Mrs. Clinton? Is the female vote still "central to (your) message," or isn't it?
WASHINGTON - Hillary Clinton has a not-so-secret weapon working for her as she seeks the presidency: women.
Just 12 days into her campaign, the New York senator and former first lady has made it clear that appealing to female voters will be central to her message, and not the afterthought it has been in past presidential campaigns. Already, her campaign says, young women in particular are drawn to her candidacy and the prospect of electing America's first woman president. Officials with the Clinton campaign cite anecdotal evidence from supporters and from the turnout of women at early campaign events.
MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. — John and Ann Berenberk dutifully watched the umpteenth Republican presidential debate on television on Thursday night and had an epiphany. It was about the candidate they had previously referred to as the tall, silent one. Fred D. Thompson.[SNIP]
The last of the candidates to enter the race, Mr. Thompson, 65, a former Tennessee senator, has so far seemed to distinguish himself mainly by a laconic style that has made him almost invisible beside the others on the stage in past debates, the Berenberks said.
“But then last night — we hadn’t even been thinking about him — all of a sudden it was clear he was the one,” said Mr. Berenberk, a retired teacher. “The bluntness, the forcefulness. He was really impressive.”
Whether this was a new Fred Thompson, or just a sign of mirage-inducing campaign fatigue among voters, many people attending Mr. Thompson’s campaign rallies here on the day after the debate reported having similar revelations.
The more the campaign wears on, the more that everyday people are starting to realize that, far from being a slick re-packaged candidate that speaks in focus-group tested soundbites, Fred Thompson is a genuine man who has, and will continue to deal in true conservative principles and ideals. To Fred, they're not soundbites, nor trite platitudes. They're the core of his being.
Mr. Thompson has made all the same points during campaign events throughout the state, aides said. But many voters who flocked to his rallies on Friday had never heard him make them until they heard him in the latest debate on the Fox News Channel.
Jim Sickles, a retired corrections officer; Natalie Bankowski, an office manager; and Maryanne Gasper, who said she was “a waitress, with two other jobs,” were among a dozen people randomly interviewed who said they had been undecided or leaning toward other Republican candidates — mainly Mr. Huckabee — until Thursday night.
As time goes by, epiphanies to that effect will become the norm, not the exception.
Anyway, you probably have an idea where this is going, so I'll cut to the chase:
State gets D+ for aid to teachers
A national study says Minnesota hasn't done enough to improve the quality of teaching its students.
By NORMAN DRAPER and JAMES WALSH, Star Tribune
Last update: January 9, 2008 - 8:28 PM
On the plus side, the "Quality Counts" report showed that Minnesota students' chances for success based on education and family factors far outstrip those of students in most states. In that category, Minnesota got a B+, and ranked seventh nationwide.Alas, my dear readers--never let good news get in the way of a hit piece:
But those findings, based on such factors as family income, parent education and parent employment, suggest that students' home lives have as much to do with their success as their schooling.Thank you Captains Obvious! Like that's some kind of revelation or something. Here's a bozo button for your efforts:
Your mothers must be proud.
But that's what happens when you have a couple of statists a la Norman Draper and James Walsh, who believe that the state should parent children. They blame parents for their childrens' successes; like it's a badge of dishonor that they're involved.
Still, it's the finding that Minnesota has fallen to near the bottom of the pack when it comes to teaching that was most startling. The state's low ranking comes mostly from a lack of various teaching programs and effectiveness measures that other states have.When you can draw a direct causal line between those "programs" and teaching effectiveness, we'll talk.
For instance, Minnesota was docked for not having a statewide program to reduce class sizes, for paying teachers less than what workers in comparable professions are paid, and for not linking student achievement to teacher evaluations.Here's something else for you to chew on Mssrs. Draper and Walsh: teaching is a calling. It's not everyone that's cut out for, nor has the desire to work with kids. Teaching is, in many ways, its own reward, and teachers wouldn't be in it if it were only for pay. And if someone isn't cut out for it, a high salary isn't going to keep him there teaching. And even if it does, you don't want someone who's in it just for the money to be teaching your kids.
State Rep. Mindy Greiling, DFL-Roseville, and chairwoman of the House K-12 finance division, argued that such findings show that "the chickens have come home to roost" in terms of the state's inadequate funding of education.The problem, Ms. Greiling, is not underfunding the schools. The problem, Ms. Greiling, is quite simply the notion that schools are trying to stuff five pints of mud down a three-pint jar. Politicians and parents alike are increasingly trying to abdicate more and more parental responsibility on the schools. Clarion calls, such as "We need sex education in the schools! We need multicultural gender-fair, disability- aware (and every other P.C. liberal cause du jour) education in the schools! We need consumer education in the schools!" are legion.
How about deportation anyway, given that he's here illegally.
Hugo Alva, 32, of Cold Spring is accused of two counts of soliciting a minor to engage in sexual contact.
The charges are felonies.
Alva has been a minister at El Pan de Vida Church, and at least two teenage girls who attended the church accused him of phone harassment this summer. Police have said the calls were sexual in nature. Jurors must find that Alva intended to commit sexual acts with the girls in order to convict him of the charges.
There are no allegations that Alva had any sexual contact with the girls.
If convicted of the charges, Alva could face deportation; he is suspected of being an illegal immigrant.
NEW YORK (MNA) – An academic delegation of Columbia University professors and deans of faculties plans to visit Tehran to officially apologize to Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinejad. The delegation plans to express regret for the insulting remarks Columbia University President Lee Bollinger directed at Ahmadinejad on September 24 in his introductory speech, the Mehr News Agency correspondent in New York reported.To borrow a line from an Andrew Lloyd Weber masterpiece, keep your hand at the level of your eye, gents.
January 9th, 2008
Carvill joined the Guard in the 80’s out of a sense of patriotism. He was a devoted big brother to Peggy Liguori, who still remembers how as kids, he took her to see Blue Hawaii and Born Free at the movies. He was the longtime pal to Rick Rancitelli who admired Carvills million-dollar vocabulary and his writing and public speaking skills. In 1993. Sgt. Carvill was working in the WTC as a paralegal when it was attacked. He helped a co-worker down 54 floors to safety. In 2001, he was still working at the WTC. He had just left the North Tower moments before the first plane hit.
Sgt. Carvill was killed when his convoy was attacked outside of Baghdad.
We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died,
We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived
This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. For more information about Wednesday Hero, or if you would like to post it on your blog, you can go here.
The guy never had a chance.
Moron Arrested After Driving Truck Into House
Bryan Scott Moron, 20, of Burleson, Texas, was arrested Friday after he lost control of his truck and struck a mailbox, then a house, MyFOXDFW.com reports.
Living up to his surname, Moron failed sobriety tests, the station said. The arrest report showed his blood alcohol level to be more than twice the legal limit.
Moron, a restaurant server, was also driving at an excessive speed, according to the report.
The U.S. Diplomatic corps is pretty much made of liberal weenies anyway, so the fact that this is even a story is beyond me. Secondly, their job isn't to make nor influence policy. Their job is to enact policy. Period.If they don't want to perform a core function of their job, then they need to look elsewhere for employment.
WASHINGTON — Nearly half of U.S. diplomats unwilling to volunteer to work in Iraq say one reason for their refusal is they don't agree with Bush administration's policies in the country, according to a survey released Tuesday.
Security concerns and separation from family ranked as the top reasons for not wanting to serve in Iraq. But 48 percent cited "disagreement" with administration policy as a factor in their opposition, said the survey conducted by the American Foreign Service Association, the union that represents U.S. diplomats.
by Nathaniel R. HelmsCongressman Murtha: All Marines involved in the Haditha incident have been cleared of the charge of MURDER. You, sir, accused them of cold-blooded MURDER; without the benefit of trial, without even having received an official briefing on the matter.
December 31, 2007 -- The Marine Corps has now acknowledged that none of the Marines charged with criminal offenses for their actions at Haditha, Iraq committed murder. Lieutenant General Samuel Helland’s decision to dismiss charges of unpremeditated murder against Staff Sergeant Frank Wuterich lay to rest specious allegations by Time Magazine reporter Tim McGirk and Congressman John Murtha that a My Lai-style massacre occurred in Haditha on November 19, 2005.
A Marine Corps spokesman said Monday that Staff Sgt. Frank Wuterich will face trial on charges of voluntary manslaughter, aggravated assault, reckless endangerment, dereliction of duty and obstruction of justice for his role in the debacle that followed an Al Qaeda led attack on a squad of 12 Marines.
Lt Gen Helland, the final arbiter in the matter, dismissed twelve charges of unpremeditated murder, and separate charges of soliciting another to commit an offense and making a false official statement. His decision removes the onus that war crimes were committed by any of the American Marines who fought in the day-long battle for the strategic city.
Attorneys Neil Puckett and Mark Zaid, in Washington, D.C., co-counsels for SSgt Wuterich, responded:
“The good news is that SSgt Wuterich (and all of the Marines, for that matter), have been forever cleared of murder charges. That means that there is (and never was) any evidence to support Congressman Murtha’s and Time magazine’s allegations of these Marines killing Iraqis 'in cold blood.'
“The bad news is that the extensive pretrial investigation and legal analysis conducted by an experienced military judge was essentially ignored. It is always disappointing when professional military prosecutors profess to want to do the right thing by setting up the system to work, and then ignore its results because they refuse to give Marines under attack in combat the benefit of the doubt that they were responding according to their training. We are confident that a military jury will acquit SSgt Wuterich of all remaining charges, because he is, in fact, not guilty.”
Published reports that Fred Thompson soon will withdraw from the Republican presidential contest and endorse Sen. John McCain have been traced in part to Mitt Romney's campaign, trying to stir up strife between McCain and Thompson.Why the dirty tricks, Mitt? Are you afraid of running on the substance of your convictions and ideas?
Glenn Reynolds says, "psycho who?"
"When you guys win, you get to keep your money. When we win, we take your money."(MN Rep. Cy Thao, DFL 65-A)
"Teacher says, everytime a bell rings, another democrat wants to raise your taxes."-Zuzu Bailey-