Monthly Archives: August 2015
NY Times on Republican terror groups.
Wow. A politician gets it totally wrong again. Where to start?
Maybe we can’t call it terror but what is positive about her welfare state that replaces fathers with a faceless bureaucracy, destroying the most essential level of government, families.
But then how about the misplaced criticism of Republicans? How horrible of them to deny the right of women to murder children.
Where is the faction that is pro-life? Laughed off the stage.
Baffling it is that Republicans can call themselves pro-life, Democrats can even mention rights. In case there is some confusion here, accepting collateral damage in pre-emptive war does not jibe with “pro-life.” Murdering a child violates the rights of someone least likely to defend himself.
“Hillary Clinton Likens Republican Views on Women to Those of Terror Groups
Hillary Rodham Clinton with supporters in Cleveland on Thursday. She said that Republican presidential candidates have “extreme” views of women.
Hillary Rodham Clinton with supporters in Cleveland on Thursday. She said that Republican presidential candidates have “extreme” views of women.Credit Michael F. McElroy for The New York Times
Hillary Rodham Clinton compared Republican presidential candidates to terrorist groups when it comes to their views on women, arguing that their “extreme” positions are not right for 21st-century America.
At a rally in Ohio on Thursday, Mrs. Clinton scolded Senator Marco Rubio of Florida for his opposition to abortion even in cases of rape or incest. She hit former Gov. Jeb Bush of Florida for wanting to defund Planned Parenthood. And she criticized Gov. John Kasich of Ohio for banning public financing of some rape crisis centers.
“Now, extreme views about women, we expect that from some of the terrorist groups,” Mrs. Clinton said. “We expect that from people who don’t want to live in the modern world. But it’s a little hard to take coming from Republicans who want to be the president of the United States.”
Calling such policies out of date and out of touch, Mrs. Clinton dared her rivals to face mothers who caught breast cancer early because of screenings and girls who did not get pregnant because of access to contraceptives that were made available through government funding.
Republicans immediately took offense to Mrs. Clinton’s remarks. Amelia Chassé, press secretary for the conservative America Rising PAC, called the comments outrageous and desperate.
Alison Moore, a spokeswoman for the Republican National Committee, said Mrs. Clinton had reached “a new low.”
Mr. Bush added on Twitter that Mrs. Clinton’s priorities are wrong.”
Sam Clovis, insane?
Sam is one of my very favorite public figures. He was campaigning for Rick Perry until yesterday when he took a job with Trump.
Sam has had a strict (in his opinion) focus on the Constitution as a guide for federal policy. In the case of military issues, of course, the Constitution is “just a damn piece of paper.”
The question I would ask Sam, if I were important enough to gain an audience, is do you believe Trump has changed enough to suit your “conservative” standards? Here he is on GW’s invasion of Iraq:
He contributed to Hillary in the past and he now calls that a business deal. He favored universal health care and other leftist policies.
I could vote for Trump on the mere fact he recognized Bush’s war as a stupid evil thing. Maybe that logical and moral thinking will cause him to rethink other issues where he is,uh, lame.
Having friends over for supper?
Try this unique serving idea:
Might separate the chaff from the grain.
A little like Wally
But he has us. The cats are another thing.
We haven’t many black Republicans in Iowa…
George Will knows baseball stats…
… then turns into a welfare statist with no concept of respect for human life.
Turns out George Will’s only attribute is his knowledge of baseball.
In an August 6 article he reviews a book by Don Winslow about the drug war in Mexico. It details the parallels between it and the Vietnam War, the “advisers”, the choppers, defoliants,assassinations,intelligence failures,and futility. 100,000 Mexican deaths in ten years. 131 journalists, as far as we know. Untold government corruption.
Then he goes on to claim it is all worth it because his beloved nanny state could never control a population free to choose dope over sobriety. Heartless bastard.
Did anyone notice the lack of gangsters shooting Tommy Guns at street corners when the other prohibition ended. Learn from history, George.
Why does the establishment fear Trump?
Check this out. (2003 or 2004) I just read that George Will believes the Tea Party doesn’t support Trump. Prolly true if they knew this. The Tea Party is just a bunch of nationalist blowhards and protectionists. But Will has it wrong. They do support Trump (at least until they find out he has this opinion on fulfilling the Kissinger dream of Americans as the politicians’ cannon fodder). I’m starting to like the guy.
Look at that smiling face.
Just look at this guy. Occupying a country where alcohol is taboo. Taking steroids. To the Afghans he’s got to look like some creature from hell. Then he gets life in prison. I can’t argue for more. I don’t believe it is man’s place to destroy God’s work if not in self defense (self defense is protecting God’s work). This piece of human debris is not solely to blame and shouldn’t be the only one to pay. Anyone, and I mean anyone who hasn’t done anything to attempt to keep our men from aggressive war is also to blame. But certainly his officers and our government officials should be punished for their involvement in this affront to nature called American foreign policy. Sergeant Bales is a symptom of a deranged nation.
Wall Street Journal (I lost the paper and I coulda sworn it was last week sometime. Now the date is 2013. Could this be a typo in The Journal?)
Soldier Gets Life in Massacre
Jury Denies Staff Sgt. Robert Bales Possibility of Parole in Murder of 16 Afghans
By JOEL MILLMAN
Updated Aug. 23, 2013 4:42 p.m. ET
JOINT BASE LEWIS-McCHORD, Wash.—It took a jury of six soldiers less than two hours Friday to condemn Staff Sgt. Robert Bales to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole for the premeditated murder of 16 Afghan civilians during a rampage in Afghanistan’s Kandahar province in March of 2012.
Staff Sgt. Robert Bales ENLARGE
Staff Sgt. Robert Bales ASSOCIATED PRESS
Staff Sgt. Bales, a 40-year-old career soldier and a veteran of combat tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, had agreed to plead guilty in June in order to avoid the death penalty.
He showed no emotion when the sentence was read in court. The day before, he told the court that the commission of his crimes was an “act of cowardice, behind a mask of fear, bull— and bravado.”
Staff Sgt. Bales is an Ohio native who had served with distinction on other deployments.
The massacre of Afghan civilians was one of the most shocking atrocities reported from a region where the U.S. has deployed troops since 2001. The soldier’s arrest, and subsequent evacuation from Afghanistan for trial in the U.S., sparked angry protests in Afghanistan, as did the U.S. military’s decision earlier this yearto accept his guilty plea.
An Afghan villager holds his head as he listens with other Afghan villagers who traveled to Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash., to testify at the sentencing hearing for Staff Sgt. Robert Bales. ENLARGE
An Afghan villager holds his head as he listens with other Afghan villagers who traveled to Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash., to testify at the sentencing hearing for Staff Sgt. Robert Bales. ASSOCIATED PRESS
The sentencing stage of the trial that began on Monday concerned only whether Staff Sgt. Bales would go to prison with, or without, any chance for an eventual release.
From the beginning, U.S. authorities presented the defendant as a soldier who deserved little sympathy. Lt. Colonel Jay Morse, the Army’s lead prosecutor, called Staff Sgt. Bales “a man of no moral compass.”
The prosecution offered a graphic depiction of the crimes, at one point displaying a photograph of a girl’s bloody corpse, lying next to her father, who the defendant also admitted to killing. Lt. Colonel Morse ran a surveillance videotape of the defendant returning to base from his rampage, and said it depicted “the methodical, confident gait of a man who has accomplished his mission.”
John Henry Browne, who directed the soldier’s defense team, left the base without speaking to media assembled for the trial. Later in the day, in a telephone interview with The Wall Street Journal, he called the sentence “disappointing, but totally understandable.”
Mr. Browne added: “We won the case when we got the death penalty off the table, which we thought was going to be the best we can do.”
Afghan boys joined the men as they talked with reporters Friday. ENLARGE
Afghan boys joined the men as they talked with reporters Friday. ASSOCIATED PRESS
In courtroom proceedings earlier this summer, the defense team indicated it would present testimony concerning combat stress and the defendant’s suffering of a traumatic head injury, as well as his abuse of alcohol and steroids, in order to persuade a U.S. Army court that Staff Sgt. Bales deserved at least a possibility of parole, which he would be eligible to seek after serving 20 years in a military stockade.
Also expected to come up as an issue at trial: the military’s own culture, which critics say encourages U.S. troops in Afghanistan to act aggressively, even if soldiers placed noncombatant Afghans at risk.
But during a week of proceedings here at this military base south of Tacoma, Wash., the Bales defense team presented little more than character witnesses on the defendant’s behalf. Staff Sgt. Bales’ defense ended when he took the stand to apologize to the many Afghan witnesses called by the prosecution.
Afterwards, several of those survivors addressed media assembled for the trial, and denounced the sentence as inadequate. “We wanted this murderer to be executed,” said Haji Mohammad Wazir, like Bales a 40-year-old father. Mr. Wazir said that among the dead and wounded civilians Staff Sgt. Bales admitted he assaulted were eleven members of his family. “We came all the way to the U.S. to get justice, and we did not get that,” he said.
Mullah Baran Noorzia, another Afghan witness, scoffed at a U.S. justice system that allows defendants to raise issues of combat stress or mental incapacity to reduce their punishment. “He is not crazy,” Mr. Baran Noorzia said. “He is a murderer.”
Write to Joel Millman at firstname.lastname@example.org
Movie Column Again
Nearly five year ago I wrote this, the second of my movie columns. Imagine a dotted line around the border with the words “clip and save” because I can’t imagine encouraging anyone to watch a movie when the weather is this gorgeous. Put these movies on your list for the coming winter. My excuse for issuing a rerun is probably of little interest to any of you so I’ll leave you out of it and apologize for the first non-original column I’ve ever submitted. We’ve got almost 400 rated movies on Netflix and these are numbers five through ten.
On the way home from a Christmas reunion a couple years ago Dawn and I stopped at McDonalds in West Des Moines. The cashier looked like he just awoke from a three day drunk. The first words out of his mouth were, “uh whaddyawant?” The lady making fries was having a coughing fit all over the food. There were wrappers on the floor like the streets of New York. The tables were cleaned with a catsup-soaked rag. Four kids rode up outside and flung their bikes into a pile against the building. If Ray Kroc were alive and saw this he would burst into tears and then torch the place. This story is my introduction to Idiocracy (2006), an all-too graphic prediction of the results of government dependence and control. I laughed. Dawn was sad. Rated R because they act like the kids on the bus.
I’ve been warned not to mention this next one. But I’m grumpy, so here goes. Freeway (1996) is about a teenage girl in the real world who stands up for herself. Reese Witherspoon shows early on she can get into a character and make her real. In a way this is a sports movie because we root for this poor soul all the way. Netflix describes it as “Suspenseful, Raunchy, Dark, Violent.” This one is also rated R. Be a good parent and realize it’s a dictatorship until they move out on their own.
I’ve seen a couple death movies lately that really tripped my trigger. The first one is The Loved One (1965). “Something to offend everyone,” is the claim in the trailer. I think this is one of the greatest movies of all time. Starring Jonathan Winters, Rod Steiger and Liberace, among other recognizable stars, these people had fun making this movie. It’s about the funeral business, as is the next movie I’ll recommend. It is not rated but the date indicates it’s harmless, just offensive.
Departures (2008) is Japanese with subtitles. Don’t be afraid, these people talk real slow and it should be a good place to start reading subtitles. If you venture forth, you enter a whole new world of great movies. This is one of them, winning the best foreign film Oscar. The director is skilled at manipulating the viewer’s emotions and making his story yours. This movie, on the surface, is about the culture of dealing with the deceased in Japan. But it is really about the world of the living and doing what you love to do. It was late, we were tired, yet we couldn’t shut this one off. (PG-13) By the way, it was recently discovered that hundreds of thousands of people in Japan have been dead for years; a result of an unmanageable social security bureaucracy. With grandma buried in the backyard the checks keep coming.
Well I started this column with the purpose of escape and ended up with a bunch of heavy stuff. This last one is heavy too, but in a different way. Jazz on a Summer’s Day (1960) was released when I was 10. Ben Stern, a fashion photographer, made this documentary about the 1958 Newport Jazz Festival and never made another movie. I know. I looked it up because I wanted more. Any music fan or movie fan should be enriched with this. My favorite part is the incredible vocal improvisation by Anita O’day on Sweet Georgia Brown. I mean to tell ya.
I hope to be back soon with an original because there is so much to talk about. By the way, we just watched a documentary about Ayn Rand (A Sense of Life) where she admits she sees little hope of her writing making an impact on the world and she settled for writing for her own pleasure. Last week I met a young man who had never heard of Ayn Rand, the author of the second largest selling book in history, Atlas Shrugged. The Bible is still number one.
To my email subscribers: You might be familiar with Wally. He is our Huntaway (dog). He is named after Walter E. Williams because he is black and smart. He has cancer and is on my mind. That is the reason for the rerun. Please take in some of these great movies and let me know what you think. Thanks for reading and letting me know if these are mere clutter in your inbox. Fritz