Sunday, January 22, 2012

The Lesser Weevil: A Comparison of Candidates

People are having difficulty choosing a candidate.  Perhaps this comparison will be of some assistance:

Mitt Romney:  He’s the Strawberry root weevil, frequently confused with a tick.  Is he a weevil or is he a tick?  Is he conservative or is he not?  He says he’s a weevil, maybe he’s really a tick.

Rick Santorum: Is a boll weevil, focusing mostly on cotton, particularly of the sweater vest variety.

Newt Gingrich: is a rice weevil, able to take flight and is into everything.  He is a very well rounded (no pun intended) weevil.
Ron Paul: He’s the weevil from the “Torchwood” TV show. “Weevils are thought to be extraterrestrial in origin, but a population of a few hundred live in the sewers of Cardiff, having travelled through a space-time rift running through the city. They usually live off sewage, but occasionally one will go rogue, come to the surface and attack humans using their sharp fangs.”  So while Ron Paul and his followers think that he is an viable weevil, they are mostly just confused.

Barack Obama: is W.E. (worst economy) Evil: immature grub-like, a temporary nuisance insinuating itself into everything.  W.E.(whacked-out Ebola) Evil and destroys all he touches  accomplishes nothing and is an ineffectual W.E. (waggishly ejaculate-less) evil.  In my opinion, it is best to stay away from the W.E. (worthless eel) Evil.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Abandon Ship, Who is First?

The cruise ship Costa Concordia left Civitavecchia, Italy on it’s way to  Savona, Italy.  Somewhere along the way the unthinkable happened.  The ship went off course and grounded off the coast of the island of Giglio. 

The ship, was the first vessel of the Concordia ship class, with sisters Costa Serena, Costa Pacifica, Costa Favolosa, Costa Fascinosa and Carnival Splendor built for Carnival Cruise Lines. Costa Concordia entered service in July 2006 and was one of the largest ships to be built in Italy.  The Costa Concordia is 290.20 metres (952 ft 1 in) long, about 21 metres (68 ft 11 in) longer than RMS Titanic to which this tragedy is being compared to.  There were 4,229 passengers on board at the time of the accident.

Capt. Francesco Schettino is under investigation for the grounding.  The route course was entered correctly into the computer and then the commander, in an unauthorized move, changed the course There is speculation that the course was changed  to show off the ship to the island of Giglio because the head waiter is from Giglio, but this is unsubstantiated at this time.
Very good BBC discussion of the deviation here:

Interactive map:

This is the island off of which the ship now sits, precariously grounded on its side with a large gash observable. 

What is evident is that the Captain apparently was one of the first to leave the ship and attempted to direct the evacuation from the life boat rather than from on the ship.  Recorded voice records show the Coast Guard ordering the captain to get back on the ship to help with the evacuation.  The captain did not stating that, because of the way the ship was positioned, he was unable to get back on board.  Now he says he "tripped" and fell into the life boat?  Ship accidentally went off course, he accidentally fell into a life boat... He has had more "accidents" than a crash-test dummy.  Does he really think people believe the yarns he is spinning?
There are also reports that there was much chaos and that it was “every man for himself” on board the ship.  There are reports of crew performing admirably and assisting with the evacuation.  The evacuation was made more difficult because of the precarious position of the ship on its side. 
This raises two important questions: first, should the crew be responsible to remain on board risking their lives to ensure all passengers get off and second, is it improper or immoral for men to leave the ship before women and children? 

I am sure that when people are hired, and certainly during their orientation period, the responsibilities of that position are reviewed in detail including what their responsibility is during a disaster.  The person has the opportunity to not accept the position if they feel uncomfortable with the job duties.  I’m sure the thought of “I don’t get paid enough for this” crossed the minds of many during the disaster.  This may be true, they may not be paid enough to risk their lives, but it is a responsibility they were aware of and agreed to when they accepted the position, even if they thought it would never happen.  From accounts of survivors, its seems that the majority of the crew did perform their duties admirably and this seems accurate as the pictures of those being helicoptered off the ship seem to be mostly of crew members who were unable to get into the life boats because they stayed to help others get off.  I have nothing but praise for those, crew and passengers, that acted selflessly during the disaster.  Capt. Francesco Schettino certainly falls into the category of the selfish.  He of all people would be aware of this responsibility to the ship and its occupants.  He blatently ignored his duties for his own preservation above all others.  To me that is a disgrace.

While there were those who acted selflessly during the disaster, there were also those who acted selfishly and as some described, boorishly.  There are reports of men, and I’m sure women, who pushed others aside to get into the life boats.  They took the phrase “every man (or woman) for himself” to heart.  It is difficult to say how one would act when faced with a disaster of this magnitude and with a real possibility of not surviving.  Survival instincts, fight or flight, take over.  Many of the crew and passengers stood their ground and fought to get others off and then there where those whose flight instinct took over and they pushed others aside to flee the sinking ship. 
The evacuation of the Costa Concordia is being compared to the evacuation of the Titanic.  The comparison is that the evacuation of the Titanic was more organized and chivalrous.  The crew defending the right of “women and children first” and they themselves honorably going down with the ship.  There are accounts of men honorably allowing others to get on the lifeboat knowing they would not be saved and sacrificing their lives.  There are comparisons that chivalry is dead and the evacuation of the Costa Concordia is proof of that.  But really, is there proof?  Of course we hear the stories of men that bullied their way past women and children.  That story is much more interesting than “man waits his turn.” 

Should it really be “women and children first?”  Is a woman more important than a man?  Should men be expected to risk their lives for a woman just because he is a man and she is a woman?  It would be the proper and moral thing to do to allow others before you, but because they are human not because they are of one gender or another.  The only exception to this, in my opinion, would be for children to go first along with whoever is accompanying them, be that person male or female.  I also believe that able bodied people should assist the infirm or the elderly on to the boats before them.  This is what I would do. 

I’m sure the “who is first” debate will continue.  One thing most will agree on is that "Captain accidental" should not have been the first one off the ship.  He's guilty for the ship's grounding and the responsible for the lives lost and he deserted the ship and the people on board.  He should sent away to a dark place where other men accidentally find their private parts up his assidental.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

The Marines are Heroes, NOT Criminals

The media is abuzz lately about the marines who allegedly urinated on dead Taliban terrorists. From all reports, it seems apparent that these men will be facing some sort of punishment. They don't deserve to be prosecuted, disciplined at most. 

I agree with Air Force Captain, ret. Rick Perry, "appropriately punished... the idea that this administration would go after these young people for a criminal act, I think it is over the top."

The Government needs to be very careful how they proceed with this process, they must be careful not to elevate the importance of our enemy. They must in no way state, but words or by actions, that our enemies, these brutal terrorists whose goal is to murder every last American, man, woman and child, is in any way more important than our brave soldiers who defend America against these vicious barbarians.

Let’s look first at these inhuman beasts, the Taliban. These are people who, as our own State Department puts it, “The regime systematically repressed all sectors of the population and denied even the most basic individual rights.” This article by the State Department itself details the Taliban’s ferocious attack on their own women “including rape, abduction, and forced marriage” Their hatred of women is overshadowed by one thing, their hatred of Americans. “Areas of Afghanistan under control of the Taliban are being used for sheltering and training of terrorists and planning terrorist acts” against the United States. Federal Register/Vol. 66, No. 89/Tuesday, May 8, 2001 Plain and simple, they hate Americans.

Our military is in Afghanistan to prevent the terrorists from coming to the United States and harming our people. They are our enemies and we are at war with them and they must be treated as our enemies.

The video that has been circulating allegedly shows four marines urinating on dead Taliban enemies that they had dispatched. I have seen the unedited, unblurred video and while it is evident that the men appear to take their genitalia out of their pants, the video is not crisp enough to see actual urine flow. The world is outraged, not by the fact that these wicked, evil enemies of the people of the United States were, deservedly, destroyed in a stream of gunfire but that they were defiled afterward by a stream of urine. In essence people are saying that they deserved to die, but not to be urinated on. Do you think for a second that had the tables been turned and the American soldier had been the ones killed and the Taliban were standing over their bodies that they would not have done the same? Of course they would have done the same and, as history has shown, much worse. We have seen the Taliban behead their enemies. Here a 12 year old boy is initiated into the act of beheading (WARNING, EXTREMELY GRAPHIC IMAGES AND VIDEO)

Army Lieutenant Colonel, ret. Allen West says “I do not recall any self-righteous indignation when our Delta snipers Shugart and Gordon had their bodies dragged through Mogadishu. Neither do I recall media outrage and condemnation of our Blackwater security contractors being killed, their bodies burned, and hung from a bridge in Fallujah. Does anyone remember the two Soldiers from the 101st Airborne Division who were beheaded and gutted in Iraq?”

The have some nerve complaining about a little urine, which in the Afghan head probably dried upon contact, that may or may not, have been put on dead terrorists! America is safer now that there are fewer terrorists bent on murdering us. I thank those marines for making me, my family and all of my countrymen safer.

The Bible tells us:
Do not be afraid as you go out to fight today! For the LORD your God is going with you! He will fight for you against your enemies, and he will give you victory!' If they refuse to make peace and prepare to fight, you must attack the town. When the LORD your God hands it over to you, kill every man in the town. But you may keep for yourselves all the women, children, livestock, and other plunder. You may enjoy the spoils of your enemies that the LORD your God has given you. As for the towns of the nations the LORD your God is giving you as a special possession, destroy every living thing in them. You must completely destroy [them], just as the LORD your God has commanded you. This will keep the people of the land from teaching you their detestable customs in the worship of their gods, which would cause you to sin deeply against the LORD your God.
~ Deuteronomy 20

These courageous men went to a foreign land and fought against our enemies to bring about their complete destruction as God has instructed. They risk their lives to protect us from our enemies and they should be praised, not prosecuted. They are heroes and should be treated as such.

Our Government feels pressured, mostly by left thinking idiots horrified by urine, that these men need to be punished. How the Government punishes these marines is important. They need to punish them for disobeying directives, not about the actual act of urination. Why is this important? By punishing them for disobeying directives they avoid showing our revolting enemies and any positive light. The repugnant Taliban pond scum do not deserve any respect. If they are punished for the act of urinating on the terrorists, and calling it an act of body desecration, the will be in fact stating that these savages, bent on our destruction, are worthy of respect. We cannot place the value of our enemies above the value of our soldiers.

Army Lieutenant Colonel, ret. Allen West suggests, after relating horrific instances of true body desecration by terrorists, that the following punishment be given:

Give them a maximum punishment under field grade level Article 15 (non-judicial punishment), place a General Officer level letter of reprimand in their personnel file, and have them in full dress uniform stand before their Battalion, each personally apologize to God, Country, and Corps videotaped and conclude by singing the full US Marine Corps Hymn without a teleprompter.”

I might add that they should not be apologizing for the act of urinating on our enemy, but rather that they apologize for the act of not following procedure, which to me is the more important issue.

As for those who appalled by pee, you should be more appalled by Obama’s desertion of Iraq and the increasing chance that the terrorists will once again gain a foothold there.

Allen West said it best in his now familiar statement:
“As for everyone else, unless you have been shot at by the Taliban, shut your mouth, war is hell." 

Discipline them if you must for not following procedures, but certainly do not prosecute or heroic marines. 

The marines are heroes, NOT criminals!

Federal Register/Vol. 66, No. 89/Tuesday, May 8, 2001 ...

Thursday, January 5, 2012

I've Got a Name: Rick Perry

I had decided a while back not to come out and state who I’m voting for because I wasn’t really 100% sure and primaries were a long way away and things change, people drop out, more information becomes available. I also didn’t want to back one candidate and then find that he/she dropped out or wasn’t the GOP nominee. All the candidates have positive ideas. I was firm about not declaring who I am backing, that is until yesterday. An interesting thing happened in the last couple of days. I finally made up my mind which candidate I am voting for, assuming he is still in the running come the Florida Primary. I am going to vote for Rick Perry.

I have always liked Rick Perry. I like his ideas and views on the issues, jobs, the economy, national security and he is pro-Israel. He is a devout Christian who can get along well with Jews.

Unfortunately, early disappointments made me move away from Rick Perry. I went to CPAC FL to hear all the candidates speak. I especially wanted to hear Perry’s speech, especially after his disappointing performance at the debate the night before. I skipped lunch with friends to go listen to him and the other candidates in the afternoon speak. When I got there, it was standing room only. Rick Perry had the largest crowd for any candidate. It was an excellent speech and I wondered why is he able to make such an eloquent speech and yet fail so miserably at the debate?
Also that day I saw Herman Cain, I hadn’t considered him before but he was great in the debate the night before, and his speech drew everyone in. As I have said before: On Friday I was witness to the audience reaction to his speech. The audience was laughing at his jokes and applauding his remarks; he was a real crowd pleaser and got a rousing standing ovation. His policies made sense, true his 9-9-9 was a little hokey, but it was better than anyone else had presented at the time.

I came home and I guess I talked about Herman Cain a lot because my husband said “I guess you’re voting for Herman Cain.” So, Herman Cain moved to the top of the list. I still couldn’t bring myself to announce I was voting for Herman Cain. Though if you look at my twitter feed, it was obvious I liked Herman Cain. We all know what happened to Herman Cain, I think he got the short end of the stick, but he is no longer in the race.
Meanwhile, Rick Perry started to make his move. His debate performances improved, his speeches improved and all this coincided with his recovery from back surgery. Coincidence, I don’t think so. It seems that as his back healed, his performance improved. Back surgery is painful and the pain in addition to the pain medication he must have been on could be a very good reason why his early performances were lacking. As he’s healed, he began running and his health and the health of his performance improved.

Also in the last couple of days, Perry has been surging forward. There also was this confrontation of Mike Allen (that I can’t stop watching).

Then after the Iowa caucus Rick Perry was thinking of dropping out. I thought, oh no! I don’t want Rick Perry to drop out. I wrote this yesterday:
Dear Rick Perry, Please Don't Hang Up Your Running Shoes

I still hadn’t made up my mind 100%. I also like Newt Gingrich, but he has some baggage and I’m not sure how great a President he would really be. Some in my family like Newt, so he was also on the top of my list with Perry. Santorum and Huntsman would be satisfactory, but not my first choice. Bachmann is out. I won’t even discuss Ron Paul.

So here I was trying to decide between Rick Perry and Newt Gingrich. I found myself defending Perry quite a bit yesterday and cheerleading for him, but still no firm commitment from me, until last night. Someone asked who I would vote for Gingrich or Perry and without even thinking I said “Perry.” Well, there you go, mind made up. I chose Perry over Gingrich (and all the other candidates). I guess I made up my mind without even knowing I made up my mind. I hope he still is in the race for the Florida primary. I hope he eventually becomes our GOP nominee. I think he has what it takes to be President.
So if you ask me “you got a name?” I can say yup, his name is Rick Perry.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Dear Rick Perry, Please Don't Hang Up Your Running Shoes

Rick Perry jumped in the race late and he has some catching up to do.  Is it too late?  I don’t think so.  He is slowly gaining momentum and making up ground.  True he’s had some snags along the way, but I don’t believe it is, at this point too late for him to overtake the other candidates.

Perry got off to a slow start.  He didn’t do very well in the early debates; he has improved greatly in this area.  As Perry himself has said, debates are not everything.  Perry’s poor debate performances were due to his back surgery.  His surgery sapped his energy, left him unable to exercise and certainly caused him pain.   As a nurse I can attest to the fact that back surgery of any kind is painful and does take time to recover from.  Certainly standing for long periods of time must have been excruciating and he was most likely taking prescription pain killers. 
Perry's running shoes have gotten his campaign moving. Perry's health is, improving, he has been seen jogging all around Iowa, an indication that his back is doing much better.  He certainly seems to have much more energy and exuberance.  His running shoes have helped keep him in the running.
Perry should at least stay in the race until the Florida primary.
I saw Perry speak at CPAC FL in September.  His debate performance was lacking, but his speech the next day was excellent:

must also mention that he had the largest audience of all the candidates (and all the top candidates were speaking) with standing room only.  This would indicate that he has a great deal of support in the state of Florida. 
Rick Perry has been handling himself very well lately, particularly with the media:
Just the other day Perry proved he can think on his feet.  Here is him putting Mike Allen of Politico, who claimed that someone on Perry’s staff said he wasn’t smart, in his place:

Perry’s quick thinking seems pretty smart and clever to me.
Whether or not his current momentum is enough to gain enough ground to win the GOP nomination us uncertain, but certainly it is enough to warrant him remaining in the race for a while longer.

So to Rick Perry I say: Please, Don't hang up your "running" shoes just yet.