Friday, August 10, 2007

Do We Need Another 9/11???

Stu Bykofsky of the Philadelphia Daily News believes we need another 9/11 to heal the wounds of divisive politics. Another terrorist attack, in his opinion, would at least bring some unity to our country. He opens his article with this...

"ONE MONTH from The Anniversary, I'm thinking another 9/11 would help America.

What kind of a sick bastard would write such a thing?

A bastard so sick of how splintered we are politically - thanks mainly to our ineptitude in Iraq - that we have forgotten who the enemy is.

It is not Bush and it is not Hillary and it is not Daily Kos or Bill O'Reilly or Giuliani or Barack. It is global terrorists who use Islam to justify their hideous sins, including blowing up women and children."

However, Bykofsky's next statement says a lot about America...

"Iraq has fractured the U.S. into jigsaw pieces of competing interests that encourage our enemies. We are deeply divided and division is weakness.

Most Americans today believe Iraq was a mistake. Why?

Not because Americans are "anti-war."
Americans have turned their backs because the war has dragged on too long and we don't have the patience for a long slog. We've been in Iraq for four years, but to some it seems like a century. In contrast, Britain just pulled its soldiers out of Northern Ireland where they had been, often being shot at, almost 40 years.

That's not the American way.

In Iraq, we don't believe our military is being beaten on the battleground. It's more that there is no formal "battleground." There is the drip of daily casualties and victory is not around the corner. Americans are impatient. We like fast food and fast war.

Americans loved the 1991 Gulf War. It raged for just 100 hours when George H.W. Bush ended it with a declaration of victory. He sent a half-million troops into harm's way and we suffered fewer than 300 deaths.

America likes wars shorter than the World Series."

I will agree with this to the extent that our society is very oriented towards instant gratification. Of course, it wasn't long before we won the actual Iraq War. What we're dealing with now is a long, drawn out occupation.

Bykofsky makes another point about what's gone wrong since 9/11...

"Because we have mislaid 9/11, we have endless sideshow squabbles about whether the surge is working, if we are "safer" now, whether the FBI should listen in on foreign phone calls, whether cops should detain odd-acting "flying imams," whether those plotting alleged attacks on Fort Dix or Kennedy airport are serious threats or amateur bumblers. We bicker over the trees while the forest is ablaze. "

However, I do think that his final comments below, while true, are a bit reckless and almost seems to be asking for another 9/11...which, honestly, it would be the last thing anyone wants.

"America's fabric is pulling apart like a cheap sweater.

What would sew us back together?

Another 9/11 attack.

The Golden Gate Bridge. Mount Rushmore. Chicago's Wrigley Field. The Philadelphia subway system. The U.S. is a target-rich environment for al Qaeda.

Is there any doubt they are planning to hit us again?

If it is to be, then let it be. It will take another attack on the homeland to quell the chattering of chipmunks and to restore America's righteous rage and singular purpose to prevail.

The unity brought by such an attack sadly won't last forever.

The first 9/11 proved that."

I don't know about the rest of you, but I think we should focus on the singular task of PREVENTING these types of attacks from happening, instead of waiting for another one attack (and who knows how many deaths) to create that focus?

I see his point, I really do...I just think that wanting another 9/11-type of attack to reunite the nation is not the line of thinking we need to have as a society. However, I do agree that our society is too geared towards instant gratification when it comes to these matters, and that we need to focus on the big picture and the important things first.

(h/t Michelle Malkin)

Your News IQ Score

Take this test via the Pew Research Center.

Someone tell Mosquito that I also scored a 91%. Let's see if you guys beat that! :)

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Sunday, Sunday, Sunday! A Pot and a Kettle Debate!

So "Kos" and Harold Ford, Jr. are going on Meet The Press to debate the future of the Democratic Party. I'm just wondering how much of this is going to involve attracting voters for positive causes, i.e. courting moderates and opposed to simply defeating and degrading those dastardly Republicans by talking about how evil they are.

Seriously, I want know how they plan to court the swing vote (and maybe even some conservatives) in 2008? I mean, is it going to be a continuation of the "Republicans are corrupt, warmongering, hatemongering, evil evil evil!" banter that we hear from the liberal blogs? Or, are we going to hear a positive, dare I say enticing, agenda for the future? For the past several years, all I've seen is the former, and very little of the latter...which has been like gasoline on the fire of divisive politics. If the Democrats want to become this "big tent" party, as they have claimed to be...they need to turn their political tact in the opposite direction.

Then again, given their track records, I'm not sure that either of these men would be the ones to do it.

(h/t Blue NoVa)

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

FDT to Announce on Sept. 5th?

(h/t Virginia Virtucon)

That's what Tim Russert is saying. I don't know what his sources are, but that's encouraging news.

Makes sense...the "school day" schedule will be back in full swing, more people will be sitting down to watch the evening news after dinner, and just at the beginning of pre-primary season...Fred Thompson's name, face, and voice will be all over the evening news and on the cable news networks, as well.

I don't know if this is the logic behind such a date, but it makes sense to me.

Here's an Interesting Step Against Illegal Immigration

Culpeper County has made English the county's official language. They also passed a resolution to join other counties in assisting the General Assembly in combating the illegal immigration problem.

In fact, in yesterday's Board of Supervisor's meeting, both measures passed with a unanimous vote, and there was no dissent from any board member.

The reason why the county passed such a resolution is because they believe that it is not the county's duty to provide translations for people...which is true. English is the language of this nation. We should provide ample opportunity to teach legal immigrants the language, but to spend that kind of money on paying translators and creating duplicate documents for each language is a bit wasteful, when it could go towards expanding programs to teach immigrants to speak the language of the land.

Here's a Question For You...

cvillelaw at Democratic Central reminds us that, on this day in 1990, Iraq announced it's intentions to annex Kuwait...which led to the Gulf War. Later in his post, cvillelaw gives a brief synopsis of the war (which we all know how it went), but he states that by the time we decided to go to war, we had a troop buildup of over 500,000 ready to go.

My question is this...since we disposed of Saddam Hussein and the Ba'ath Party, have we ever had 500,000+ troops fighting in Iraq?

As far as I've seen, it seems we've kept that number under 200,000. Now, I'm not making calls to escalate the troop number, but why did we use 500,000 troops stop an invasion...and only 200,000 or less to start one? I know we had troops on the ground in Afghanistan at the time the Iraq War started, but since the Iraq War itself ended (and this turned into an occupation), why have we been over there with such a smaller force if there is so much ground that needs to be covered to stop the insurgents?

Of course, my numbers could be wrong, so if they are I would appreciate it if someone could point me in the right direction over this.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Krehbiel Hits It On The Head

A recent post at Krehbiel's Commentary caught my eye...

"Regarding the recent surge in good news about the surge that I keep hearing about, how will we know it was the surge that worked and not simply the passage of time? The answer, I suspect, is that politicians and pundits will tell us so, which is not much of an answer. But if that will allow us to finally declare victory in the "war" that we decisively won over four years ago, I'm all for it. Except then we'll have to start the reconstruction phase all over again -- maybe this time we'll actually get to call it a reconstruction and things will go better."

I do agree, we won this war decisively long's been an occupation ever since. The problem is, the Iraqi government needs to step up to finish this reconstruction. That's the key aspect that needs a lot of focus if we're going to end this thing right.

The People's Champ?

According to an article in The Hill (courtesy of, Fred Thompson may very well be that.

They delved into Fred Thompson's June fundraising numbers of $3.4 million from over 9,000 donors. Many saw this as a sign of a struggling campaign, but let's see where those funds came from.

- Over 7,500 donors made their contributions online
- 6,888 made donations of less than $200.00

This is an indication that the actual electorate, and not just big-money/special-interest donors, that are contributing to Thompson's campaign. Now, if you look further...

- No telephone support
- No direct mail
- Only 2 fundraising events during the whole month
- Only 18% of the fundraising money was actually spent in June

So really, it's been the internet and word-of-mouth (which is controlled more by the electorate than anything else) that has been driving the Thompson campaign. From what I understand, this money will be used as we ramp up into pre-primary season, which would give Thompson an edge when it comes to "cash-on-hand" if he continues to be wise with these campaign dollars he's receiving now.

Now, many more fundraising events were held during the month of July, so it will be interesting to see what kind of a difference those events will have on the fundraising numbers. However, I truly believe that this is one campaign that the people, above anything else, have been driving and will continue to drive as we plow our way through these slow, sweaty summer months and into the pre-primary season.

Beauchamp Recants

Pvt. Scott Thomas Beauchamp has come under a lot of criticism for an article he wrote for The New Republic.

From the Weekly Standard blog...(h/t Michelle Malkin for the link)

"THE WEEKLY STANDARD has learned from a military source close to the investigation that Pvt. Scott Thomas Beauchamp--author of the much-disputed 'Shock Troops' article in the New Republic's July 23 issue as well as two previous "Baghdad Diarist" columns--signed a sworn statement admitting that all three articles he published in the New Republic were exaggerations and falsehoods--fabrications containing only 'a smidgen of truth,' in the words of our source.

Separately, we received this statement from Major Steven F. Lamb, the deputy Public Affairs Officer for Multi National Division-Baghdad:

An investigation has been completed and the allegations made by PVT
Beauchamp were found to be false. His platoon and company were interviewed and
no one could substantiate the claims.

According to the military source, Beauchamp's recantation was volunteered on the first day of the military's investigation. So as Beauchamp was in Iraq signing an affidavit denying the truth of his stories, the New Republic was publishing a statement from him on its website on July 26, in which Beauchamp said, 'I'm willing to stand by the entirety of my articles for the New Republic using my real name.'"

What a hypocrite, and a traitor to his own country. He recants these serious allegations after once standing proud behind his words that have been used as proof of how evil our military is. To all of the liberals that used this man's false words as a pedestal to stand upon and denounce our military, stand up and say "hey, this guy was wrong and he lied" as well.

If you didn't know, Beauchamp was the "Baghdad Diarist" who wrote under the pen name "Scott Thomas", and wrote several anti-war, anti-military, and anti-conservative blogs stating "facts" that have now turned out to be blatantly false. Of course, part of the reason why he was hired was because he was married to a staffer at The New Republic.

Some of the "facts" Beauchamp stated were that soldiers mocked disfigured women, ran over dogs with military vehicles for fun, and played with the skulls of dead Iraqi children...among others.

Now, I wonder how many other of these "writers" that have said such things will turn out to be liars, as well?

Falling Into Place

I must say, the new version of Fred Thompson's campaign site is mahhh-velous, and much more interactive and colorful. If you want to hear the man speak about his viewpoints, you can do so through this website...both in text and via streaming video.

All the pieces are falling into place (finally!), but this campaign really needs to be made official - pronto. To create that second wave of support, Fred needs to win over the undecideds by announcing his official candidacy.

It seems the excitement is picking up again amongst Fred Thompson supporters, which is an encouraging sign.

An Interesting Parallel of Propaganda

Courtesy of Ion Mihai Pacepa at

Pacepa is a former intelligence agent from Romania who used to work with the KGB in West Germany as part of the Soviet bloc's spy games against the West (and yes, we played those spy games, too). Pacepa is actually the highest ranking intelligence officer to ever defect from a Warsaw Pact nation.

Pacepa believes that the liberal left's propaganda machine is very similar in tact to the Soviet Union and the Eastern Bloc's anti-American propaganda tactics.

The ending of the column says it all...

"On July 28, I celebrated 29 years since President Carter signed off on my request for political asylum, and I am still tremendously proud that the leader of the Free World granted me my freedom. During these years I have lived here under five presidents--some better than others--but I have always felt that I was living in paradise. My American citizenship has given me a feeling of pride, hope and security that is surpassed only by the joy of simply being alive. There are millions of other immigrants who are equally proud that they restarted their lives from scratch in order to be in this magnanimous country. I appeal to them to help keep our beloved America united and honorable. We may not be able to change the habits of our current political representatives, but we may be able to introduce healthy new blood into the U.S. Congress.

For once, the communists got it right. It is America's leader that counts. Let's return to the traditions of presidents who accepted nothing short of unconditional surrender from our deadly enemies. Let's vote next year for people who believe in America's future, not for the ones who live in the Cold War past."

Very, very true.

(h/t to one of The Podium's sources of interesting news and opinion, Paul Cave)

Stunningly Simple Interpretation of Words

Eddie thinks I'm attempting to "spin" his statements.

When I said that you "abhorred your own listeners", I'm referring to the fact that your listeners are the residents of the Valley, are they not? Anyone within the range of your radio station's towers are, at the least, potential listeners.

Anyway, in the post I linked to above, Eddie did manage to clarify his statements (at least, he narrowed his scope of who he was referring to as bigots and hatemongers). Whether he knows it or not, though, his statements come across more sweeping and generalized to the objective eye than he may have realized.

Did I intentionally spin your comments to mean something different? No, I simply read them for what they were, and interpreted them as they stood.

Eddie finishes up his "reaction" with this...

"What I do think is that the haters are louder around here, and greater in number.
But at the end of the day, I see people as individuals.
And Phil Chroniger should know better than that kind of crap."

Exactly...what you think is that there are more "haters" around here than anywhere else you've lived. Again, that's your opinion/experience, you're entitled to that. However, given MY experience, I'm inclined to disagree. I don't think you realize that your own words were much broader in their targets without your recent "clarification."

However, I'm not one for "blog wars". I've said my piece and you've said yours. You believe one thing, I believe another. I guess we'll just have to leave it at that.

And those people you believe to be haters, you'll have to answer to them...not to me, because I am not one that spews hate or spins statements in ways that aren't true for the sake of doing so.

And Eddie Garcia should know better than that kind of crap.


You've gotta love Mortman, in a recent post, he displays this picture of CNN wishing Helen Thomas a happy birthday.

Too funny, in my opinion.

Monday, August 6, 2007

C'mon Guys...

I didn't watch the most recent GOP debate, which was on Sunday's edition of "This Week" with George Stephanopoulos (spelled it right on the first try, yeah baby!), but I read a recap of the debate, courtesy of The Washington Times. Anyone want to guess as to which debate topic got talked about first in the Times article?

If you said abortion, you get a virtual cookie. And if you guessed that this topic involved mostly talking points from Mitt Romney and Rudy Guiliani (because of their previous or current pro-abortion stances, depending on who you're talking to), you get some virtual chocolate chips thrown in with that cookie.

Why so many within the GOP continue to make abortion such a huge talking point, with much more pressing issues out there, I don't know.

Guiliani's statements about bad economic policies from the Democrats (that the kneejerk liberal reaction is to simply raise taxes) were on-point.

Mike Huckabee's analogy about health-care should focus more on prevention, and not just treatment, was interesting. Huckabee said "It's almost like having a boat that's taking on water, and rather than plugging the hole, we want to get a bigger bucket to take the water out of the boat,"

McCain's losing it...the man actually said "The respect and commitment to the rights of the unborn is something I've fought for, and it has a lot to do with national security. It says very much what kind of country we are," Read that again, folks. He actually tried to tie his stance against abortion to improving national security!

(W)hiskey (T)ango (F)oxtrot, John McCain, (W)hiskey (T)ango (F)oxtrot.

Iraq, You Break

Ok, the title doesn't make too much sense compared to what I'm saying, but it goes back to an old joke and I couldn't get it out of my head...but I digress.

We're less than 60 days away from receiving the "Petraeus Report" that will determine the course of action we will take in regards to the post-war occupation of Iraq. Now that we know that the Dems are anxious about what a positive report could do to the party's stance on the whole occupation, it's time we start laying out the paths that we can take to end this deal.

A Positive Report will lead to further military action, no doubt about it. In fact, we should start looking at building upon "what has worked" and capitalize on that. In the meanwhile, efforts should be made at bringing the different sects of the Iraqi government back together to form some kind of a functional body of government. In fact, this would be a good time to implement my strategy for fixing Iraq to a suitable condition.

A Negative Report will probably be the last straw for fixing Iraq. We will then have to consider leaving Iraq and focus more on national security within our borders for the time-being. However, making a timetable for withdrawal public would be a poor course of action. Of course we don't want our enemies knowing that we're leaving. Just starting bringing troops home, but keep our forces ready if the situation improves due to outside effects (such as the Iraqi government getting their stuff together).

A Mixed Report is dependent upon what the Iraqi government's situation is looking like at the time. If it is something that is worth salvaging, we attempt to salvage it. If their government refuses to cooperate with efforts to get the nation up-and-running again...then it's time we start to leave.

Since the left swears the surge is not working, and the right swears it is...the only real person we can trust to give us the truth is General Petraeus. Then we will have a much better idea of the situation that is going on over there.

Defecating Where They Eat

Some people have no problem with doing exactly that.

Eddie Garcia (aka kestrel9000 of Cobalt6/Dailykos fame) is a proud liberal. In fact, in many ways, he is a socialist in the Vermont sense of the word. I've pretty much agreed to disagree with Eddie on practically everything, because we do. In fact, I've long-thought that I was one of the few Valley conservatives to have a relatively civil relationship with ol' Eddie.

However, his statements in a recent article in The New Dominion raised the hairs on the back of my moderately-conservative neck just a little.

Namely, this one..."'This is the fourth state that I’ve lived in - and the politics of division, the hatred, the pointing the fingers. Democrats are traitors, homosexuals will destroy your marriage, the Muslims will kill you when you sleep - and people take this seriously. I find it disgusting. It’s revolting,” Garcia says.

'It goes against everything that I believe in, everything that I was raised to believe was right, proper, true and correct. Bigotry and hatred in this area seems to have a license - and all I can do is stand against it.

'If there are consequences, then there are consequences - but I am who I am. I have my values, and I compromise them for no one.'"

Eddie, you and I both come from out-of-state. I come from College Park, Maryland (just outside of D.C.) by way of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. I've resided in the Valley for 10 years. Yes, I've had my run-ins with some who have closed minds towards minorities...but those were very few-and-far between. The bigotry and hatred you describe, to be quite honest, invokes images of the pre-Civil Rights era of the South.

You claim to be about "the community", but all of the communities throughout The Valley are very tight-knit, and very welcoming...especially in comparison to when I moved to Pennsylvania, where things are a bit more "closed off" to those coming in from outside the area (though, the people there are still very nice once you get to know them).

I've found most of the people of this area to be God-fearing, hard-working, blue-collar, no-nonsense, proud individuals who, pardon my language, couldn't give a damn about politics, gay marriage, or anything else you have a problem with...but you choose to degrade them all in a sweeping generalization.

To hear you describe these people in such a way is detrimental to the image of these generally good, honest people. I will gladly stand up and defend the dignity and honor of these people, even though you would rather perpetuate stereotypes that really only reflect a minority of those that live in our general area.

Don't believe me, then read this.

You seem to have a great, and very misplaced, disgust with this area...especially your comments in this article are directed towards those who listen to your radio show. I don't think I've ever heard of a radio DJ who abhorred his own listeners with this kind of ferocity.

Since your listeners = your paycheck, your tact in attempting to implement such radically-leftward change in the minds of listeners in such a conservative area should be reconsidered. Instead of opening minds to your point of view, you're insulting those you want to reach out to.

As you said, you have your values...and you compromise them for no one. However, don't be so surprised if people don't compromise your values for you, either.

Once again, I guess you and I will have to agree to disagree. You think people of the Valley are nothing but bigots and hatemongers...I, on the other hand, feel differently.

TND: Abuser Fee Winners and Losers

Chris Graham has a "Winners and Losers" column up at The New Dominion in regards to the Abuser Fees. Here's a few of his winners and losers over this whole debacle...

"Winner: General Assembly Republicans

How they’ve been able to turn the driver-fee thing around on Gov. Tim Kaine without eliciting a peep of retort from the governor’s office is beyond me.I don’t agree with their position on transportation funding, but I have to admit that I admire their style.


Winner: We, the people

Not that the petitions have actually forced anybody in Richmond to change the course on the driver fees, but they have been successful in generating scads of attention to how upset the vast majority of us are about what is obviously a boondoggle.

If only we could channel this into actually getting people to get out to the polls this November...


Loser: Democratic Party of Virginia.

Have you seen the new DPVA website poking fun at the Republican Party of Virginia? (

Let me spare you - one of its key features has to do with pointing out how various Republicans have flip-flopped on the driver-fees issue that has hundreds of thousands of Virginians preparing for a run on Richmond.

Earth to Virginia Dems: How much of a role did Tim Kaine, aka the Democratic governor, have to do with creating the furor with his amendment limiting their application to Virginia drivers?


Not that I would pin it all on him, because the GOP-majority legislature had to do its part to pass the amendment to get us to where we are now. But..."

Tim Kaine was also a "loser", while Virginia Media Outlets come out as pretty big winners in this whole deal.

I would say that, in the grand scheme of things, this is pretty accurate. One thing that was missed, however, is the fact that there was a higher percentage of GOP delegates against the final version of the Abuser Fee legislation than there were Democrats.

That also makes the DPVA big losers in this whole deal.

Will Someone Tell Raising Kaine That I Am Hispanic?

They failed to realize this when attempting to make judgments on how "monolithically white" conservative bloggers are, and I'm not going to register over there simply to correct them.

With all the posts that I've made that clearly state this, you'd think Lowell would've figured this out. I guess the fact that I support conservative politics and am against illegal immigration somehow makes me "not Hispanic".

Or maybe it's the Dutch last name from my father's side :) However, considering my skin tone, facial features, and my mother's place of's a pretty safe bet that I'm Hispanic.

UPDATE...upon re-reading the post (and upping RK's page hits...doh!), I read that Lowell said that this was among "clearly Republican blogs". Since my blog is only "cloudy Republican, clearly somewhat-conservative", I'm assuming this is why I was not counted towards the "minority count".