Doctor, heal thy self.

The president of Liberia is pleading for help from the international community. This is while her son, a doctor, lives in Georgia and won’t go home because of the danger to his health. Meanwhile, our decrepit government is sending servicemen, whose job it is to defend the United States, over there to do what Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s son refuses to do. Our government is a despicable mess of fools who bill us for their foolishness.

Democracy demonstrators!

Oh man. Don’t we love those democracy demonstrators. Democracy, two coyotes and a sheep deciding what’s for dinner, is all the rage. Now we are supposed to root for these kids in Hong Kong. After all, the commies are the antithesis of democracy, right?

Well, let’s step back and take a deep breath. Communism is closer to democracy than we are led to believe. It is mob rule. It is the utopia of progressives, where the rich are punished and the poor are rewarded.

What the pro-democracy demonstrators in Hong Kong want is what they are getting, rule by Chinese communists. When will any demonstration be for freedom and responsibility? Never. Because those who value freedom and responsibility are busy being free and responsible. They have no time to demonstrate in anticipation of gaining the property of others through political means.

That is why we are doomed.

Column re-run for those who think I’m anti-military

Fritz is pro-military

I met an old friend at the phone store the other day and he said he liked my column except when I was “anti-military.” It strikes me as odd that my opinions are viewed as such. But considering how government has grown to consume about half of its citizens’ productivity without so much as a whimper, I can see government education has taken a toll on the founders’ vision.

There is a 180 acre field north of us that still has ponds and a full load of nitrogen applied. The dry springs we’ve had lately apparently lulled this farmer into renting too much ground and he will either have tall spindly beans or late corn. But as Bob Streit said in a recent Farm News article, he’s got crop insurance so it doesn’t matter so much.

The welfarists and warfarists have more in common than either would care to admit. They don’t pay all their costs themselves. The farmer mentioned above got in over his head because subsidized crop insurance let him shift costs to taxpayers. His risky decisions will draw from the societal pool of wealth and added to the bad decisions of others, make all of us slightly poorer.

Those who wish to abuse and misuse the military always do so with other people’s money, the same way supporters of the welfare state aim to help the poor as long as someone else pays for it. You cannot be a laissez-faire capitalist and support protection of American interests abroad. That is called crony capitalism or corporate welfare.

I am opposed to use of the U.S. Military to provide welfare to businesses who should provide for their own defense around the world. I choose to live within our borders because that is the jurisdiction of the U.S. Government. Controlling the entire world for the safety of U.S. interests is too large a task for any military. Private funding for protection of U.S. interests abroad would direct that funding to the most profitable uses.

If I wanted to be anti-military as my friend claims I am, I would simply do everything our government Neo-cons are doing right now. These are the positions I would take to fulfill the fantasy that I am anti-military:

  • If I were anti-military… I would advocate means tests for benefits promised to veterans. In the real world this would be called socialism. Our soldiers should be fully compensated for the work they do, not for their social or economic standing.
  • If I were anti-military… I would advocate our military be used to protect private business, putting our soldiers in danger to benefit those businesses at the expense of someone else. What is going on now gives foreign businesses and workers an advantage over Americans by furnishing defense for non-American interests.
  • If I were anti-military… I would send our military into foreign lands to micro-manage cultures foreign to our own and establish political systems they will never understand. Our soldiers are committed by our leaders to impossible tasks and then offered limited support to tackle those tasks.
  • If I were anti-military… I would put our troops in situations where innocent people are harmed and that harm is not justified in defense of our country, creating an overwhelming sense of guilt.

My pro-military positions are expressed by my advocacy for a purely defensive force. Such a military, that does not act pre-emptively would attract personnel dedicated to defending the United States rather than acting as agents for the United Nations or foreign governments. Without pre-emptive military action those potential enemies that are swayed to oppose us might stay neutral or even be our friends.

In other words, sending our military into combat to manage an unmanageable world is anti-military. Misusing our military is anti-military.

These two quotes from George Washington’s farewell address express my views better than I could myself:

“It is our true policy to steer clear of permanent alliances with any portion of the foreign world…”

“…avoid the necessity of those overgrown military establishments, which, under any form of government, are inauspicious to liberty, and which are to be regarded as particularly hostile to Republican Liberty.”

I am pro-military. I prefer that they stay alive to protect our country.

Anita O’Day’s Birthday

My first day at the Newport Jazz Festival in 1969 included Anita O’Day. If you saw the lineup for the festival you might understand why I forgot (!) her performance.

simplybek: Newport Jazz Festival, 1969. The lineup was ridiculous- Jeff Beck, Miles Davis, Frank Zappa, James Brown, Sly and the Family Stone, B.B. King, Johnny Winter, John Mayall, Led Zeppelin, Ten Years After, Jethro Tull, Blood Sweat and Tears, Herbie Hancock, Buddy Rich, Dave Brubeck, Jimmy Smith, George Benson… for under ten dollars.

Well. There it is. To me, it beat Woodstock (two weeks later) hands down. But then I saw Hendrix 2 years earlier. In 1957 a fashion photographer shot a documentary about that festival. It is truly a work of art that every music lover should see.

The clip below is from that movie. Thank God the abortionists stayed home on this day in 1919.

Defense Department needed at the World Food Prize

We have West Africans in Des Moines speaking at the World Food Prize event. Does that seem weird and scary to you?

Occupy The World Food Prize is also there promoting high levels of erosion through reduction of herbicide use. (In case that doesn’t make sense to you, herbicides replace tillage to fight yield reducing weed infestations.) Why would they do that instead of protesting the World Food Prize inviting possible Ebola carriers into our state?

Who pays when my daughter flies to Atlanta on business and gets deathly ill. What the hell is the purpose of government anyway?

OCTOBER 16, 2014

West African leaders discuss Ebola at World Food Prize event

World Food Prize baners hanging at the State Capitol.

Leaders of a pair of West African countries, visiting Iowa for the World Food Prize events, say the Ebola crisis has not only taken thousands of lives, it’s also threatening to destroy their economies. Florence Chenoweth is the Minister of Agriculture in Liberia. She says most people in West Africa were not aware of the virus in the first critical months of the outbreak and many refused treatment.

“People are just now beginning to understand that (Ebola) is real and it kills,” Chenoweth said. Around 4,000 people have died in Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea, the countries hardest hit by the disease. Joseph Sam Sesay is the Minister of Agriculture in Sierra Leone, which boasted one of the three fastest growing economies in the world before the Ebola crisis.

“Today, instead of a projected 11.3 percent annual economic growth rate for 2014, we later deflated that to 7 and today, we’re only anticipating something like three-percent,” Sesay said. Around two-thirds of the people in Sierra Leone are farmers with small operations and most are very poor.

The Ebola outbreak has exacerbated their struggles, according to Sesay, as neighboring countries are closing their borders and suspending trade. “Isolating the countries Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone has a more devastating effect,” Sesay said. “We are talking about the movement of goods and people, some of these are humanitarian.”

At a World Food Prize news conference in Des Moines Wednesday, Sesay made a direct appeal for U.S. agencies to further help his country. “The best, for me, is to fight the war where the war is and not to wait until it comes here,” Sesay said. “Please, we are appealing to you to really support us so we can stop this.”

Agencies in the U.S. have committed more than $400 million to efforts to fight Ebola and the U.S. Department of Defense is expected to provide another $1 billion in assistance. In recent weeks, an Iowa-based relief agency has sent 600,000 prepackaged meals to Liberia. Outreach Incorporated has a goal of providing one million meals to the country by the end of the year.

The Affordable Care Act (proof it works)

Let’s not forget the Defense Department. Or do I not know the meaning of words.

Ebola Patient Contacted CDC Before Flight, Agency Says
By NBC 5 Staff

New details are emerging on Amber Vinson’s decision to fly home to DFW even though she was running a fever. The CDC says Vinson contacted the agency to report her symptoms prior to flying.

Wednesday, Oct 15, 2014 • Updated at 10:59 PM CDT
Dallas Ebola patient Amber Vinson contacted the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention before boarding a commercial flight Monday because she had a slight fever, CDC spokesman David Daigle said.
“Vinson was not told that she could not fly,” the government spokesperson told NBC News.
VIDEOWhat to Know: How Ebola is Spread
Vinson, the second Dallas nurse to fall ill with the virus after treating the first U.S. patient there, was flown to Atlanta for treatment at Emory University Hospital on Wednesday, after being treated in isolation at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas.
She was part of the team that treated Thomas Eric Duncan, the first patient diagnosed with Ebola in the U.S., at Texas Health Presbyterian before he died there.
Dallas Nurse with Ebola Transported to Atlanta[DFW] Dallas Nurse with Ebola Transported to Atlanta
A Dallas nurse who has Ebola is being transferred to Emory University Hospital in Atlanta for treatment.
Vinson, 29, had been self-monitoring and was reporting her temperature to CDC epidemiology teams routinely.
Daigle said that Vinson called the CDC on Monday before flying from Cleveland back to DFW on Frontier Airlines Flight 1143, and she reported that she had a temperature of 99.5 degrees.
UPDATED2nd Ebola Patient Arrives at Emory Hospital
According to the government spokesperson, when Vinson called in, the staff she talked with looked on the CDC website for guidance. At the time, the category for “uncertain risk” had guidance saying that a person could fly commercially if they did not meet the threshold of a temperature of 100.4.
CDC Director Dr. Tom Frieden had said earlier Wednesday on a phone press briefing that Vinson “should not have traveled on a commercial aircraft.”
Ebola Patient Heads to Atlanta for TreatmentEbola Patient Heads to Atlanta for Treatment
Daigle said he believes Frieden said what he said because it should have been common sense to Vinson that she should not fly with a slight temperature.
Copyright Associated Press / NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth