Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Changing of the Guard at Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

Cribbed from Woodersterman's.

Waterspout Sends Bounce House Flying in Fort Lauderdale — With Kids Inside!


Watch: "Bounce house with kids inside swept into the air by waterspout."

5th Circuit Court of Appeals Rules Against Obama's Illegal Immigration Amnesty

It's gonna go to the Supremes.

At LAT, "Obama immigration overhaul and 'Dreamers' handed another legal setback."

And at Politico, "Ruling puts Obama's immigration legacy in jeopardy":
Latest legal blow could put final decision close to the end of his presidency.

A series of setbacks and delays in the key legal challenge to President Barack Obama’s executive actions on immigration could irreparably damage his legacy on the issue, even if the Supreme Court ultimately upholds his authority to act.

The latest blow came Tuesday as a three-judge appeals court panel voted, 2-1, to deny the administration’s request to proceed with Obama’s plan to grant quasi-legal status and work permits to millions more illegal immigrants while litigation over those actions plays out.

Two and a half months after the Justice Department sought an emergency stay of a judge’s order blocking Obama’s moves, the 5th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals turned down the request.

If the administration can’t get the Supreme Court to act promptly to lift the injunction or chooses not to try, the White House could find Obama’s long-promised immigration actions on hold until the Supreme Court rules definitively on the legal questions at stake — a ruling that likely wouldn’t come until next June.

At the clip, Michelle Malkin destroys Obama administration lackey Mark Hannah.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Megyn Kelly Eviscerates Obama for Shameful 'No Major Ground Wars' Memorial Day Comments (VIDEO)

Megyn Kelly is the freakin' best!

Background at Gateway Pundit, "In Memorial Day Speech Obama Brags About ‘Ending’ War in Afghanistan … (No One Applauds)."

Watch, "Reaction to President Obama's Memorial Day Remarks - The Kelly File."

Specials in Toys & Games

At Amazon, Shop - Travel Friendly Toys & Games Event.

Hope everyone had a wonderful Memorial Day weekend. I'll have more blogging tonight.

The Saluting Boy on Omaha Beach

This is absolutely amazing.

Watch at FrontPage Magazine, "An 11-year-old old boy says thank you to the soldiers who fought and died on Omaha beach on D-Day morning 70 years earlier..."

U.S. Military Proposes Challenge to China Sea Claims

At WSJ, "Moves would send Navy planes, ships near artificial islands built by China in contested waters":
The U.S. military is considering using aircraft and Navy ships to directly contest Chinese territorial claims to a chain of rapidly expanding artificial islands, U.S. officials said, in a move that would raise the stakes in a regional showdown over who controls disputed waters in the South China Sea.

Defense Secretary Ash Carter has asked his staff to look at options that include flying Navy surveillance aircraft over the islands and sending U.S. naval ships to within 12 nautical miles of reefs that have been built up and claimed by the Chinese in an area known as the Spratly Islands.

Such moves, if approved by the White House, would be designed to send a message to Beijing that the U.S. won’t accede to Chinese territorial claims to the man-made islands in what the U.S. considers to be international waters and airspace.

The Pentagon’s calculation may be that the military planning, and any possible deployments, would increase pressure on the Chinese to make concessions over the artificial islands. But Beijing also could double down, expanding construction in defiance of the U.S. and potentially taking steps to further Chinese claims in the area.

The U.S. has said it doesn’t recognize the man-made islands as sovereign Chinese territory. Nonetheless, military officials said, the Navy has so far not sent military aircraft or ships within 12 nautical miles of the reclaimed reefs to avoid escalating tensions.

If the U.S. challenges China’s claims using ships or naval vessels and Beijing stands its ground, the result could escalate tensions in the region, with increasing pressure on both sides to flex military muscle in the disputed waters.

According to U.S. estimates, China has expanded the artificial islands in the Spratly chain to as much as 2,000 acres of land, up from 500 acres last year. Last month, satellite imagery from defense intelligence provider IHS Jane’s showed China has begun building an airstrip on one of the islands, which appears to be large enough to accommodate fighter jets and surveillance aircraft.

The U.S. has used its military to challenge other Chinese claims Washington considers unfounded. In November 2013, the U.S. flew a pair of B-52 bombers over disputed islands in the East China Sea to contest an air identification zone that Beijing had declared in the area.

Officials said there was now growing momentum within the Pentagon and the White House for taking concrete steps in order to send Beijing a signal that the recent buildup in the Spratlys went too far and needed to stop.

Chinese officials dismiss complaints about the island-building, saying Beijing is entitled to undertake construction projects within its own sovereign territory. They say the facilities will be used for military and civilian purposes.

“China has indisputable sovereignty over the Nansha Islands and their adjacent waters,” said embassy spokesman Zhu Haiquan, using the Chinese name for the Spratlys. “The relevant construction, which is reasonable, justified and lawful, is well within China’s sovereignty. It does not impact or target any country, and is thus beyond reproach.”

Plus, "China Lashes Out Over U.S. Plan on South China Sea."

VIDEO: Jennifer Lopez Cutout Bathing Suit for Us Weekly

Following-up from earlier, "Smokin' Jennifer Lopez Cutout Bathing Suit for Us Weekly Cover Photo."

BONUS: At Egotastic!, "Jennifer Lopez Wicked Swimsuit Behind the Scenes (VIDEO)."

Jeffrey Spector Kills Himself at Swiss Dignitas Clinic Despite Not Being Terminally Ill

He was going to be terminally ill, with a tumor lodged next to his spine.

But his disease hadn't advanced that far yet. He just said fuck it anyway. Might as well go for it before the going got too rough.

At the Telegraph UK, "Dignitas death sparks renewed controversy over assisted suicide law."

And at the Guardian, "Man who killed himself at Dignitas explains decision in film."

I don't like it. Assisted suicide is rife with abuse. Frankly, it's unholy and evil, but then, all that progressives touch is unholy and evil.

Monday, May 25, 2015

'Are you barbecuing this weekend?' Democrats Keep Demonstrating What Memorial Day Is Not About

At Twitchy, "Democrats acknowledge that Memorial Day is about more than President Obama eating ice cream."

More Memorial Day Lily Aldridge

Following-up from earlier, "Yeah, Lily Aldridge, Freakin' Patriot Babe."

At Maxim:

Charles C. Johnson Threatens Lawsuit After Twitter Suspends Accounts for Alleged TOS Violations

Everybody hates Chuck Johnson because he plays no favorites and goes after anyone and everyone. He doesn't bother me, although I don't RT him that much anymore. I don't need the aggravation from all the PC conservatives out there.

In any case, he's been banned over nothing more than a metaphor. See Pat Dollard, "Conservative Journalist Charles C. Johnson Suspended From Twitter Over 'Taking Out' Metaphor."

Johnson's account is still down.

More at Pando, "Here’s the remarkable letter Chuck Johnson’s attorney sent to Twitter threatening legal action."

Also at Re/Code, "Twitter Suspends Troll Chuck Johnson — Are Its New Guidelines Actually Working?" At Memeorandum.

Leftists Disgrace Memorial Day

From Kurt Schlichter, at Town Hall:

As ISIS continues its orgy of rape and beheadings in Ramadi, perhaps our president could show a rare flash of dignity by simply slipping out the back door of the White House and down the road to the links instead of putting on his annual farce of “honoring” the sacred dead at Arlington. If he gave one half a damn about those who gave their lives for this country, the black flag wouldn’t be flying over the cities and towns purchased with the blood of so many valiant warriors.

But Barack Obama, like the rest of the liberal elite, cares nothing for our soldiers or our veterans, or the fact that hundreds of thousands of them died for the rights he treats like a rash – the right to speak freely, the right to worship as we please, the right to have our voices heard through our elected representatives instead of having our voices suppressed by neo-fascist bureaucrats and our representatives bypassed by a would-be strongman who wishes he could rule by decree.

Like everything about the Community Organizer-In-Chief and his cronies, everything about the carefully choreographed charade we’ll see this Memorial Day is a lie.

It is a lie when Obama and his liberal pals claim the dead inspire them.

It is a lie when Obama and his liberal pals claim the dead have their respect.

It is a lie when Obama and his liberal pals claim the dead are anything more to them than a photo op designed to fool low-information voters into thinking those who temporarily lead this country actually love this country and its citizens.

It’s a pose, an act, a scam. You can see it in the faces of the liberal politicians as they are forced to stand there onstage each last Monday of May, pretending they wouldn’t rather be anywhere else in the world than in the sun listening to people talk about what, at best, liberals consider suckers, and more often consider outright babykillers.

Look at Obama’s face as he walks behind the floral tribute in front of the cameras at the Tomb of the Unknowns. Tell me he’s thinking about the men who stormed ashore at Normandy and not about getting out of there and teeing up.

He’ll talk a good game – they all will, but it’s all a lie. If he cared, he wouldn’t have squandered the victory in Iraq to satisfy his America-hating pals on the left. ISIS, the JV team? Obama lied, and tens of thousands died – and those were the lucky ones...

The Dutch Have Never Forgotten American Sacrifices in World War II

A great piece.

This makes me happy. And proud.

At the Washington Post, "Americans gave their lives to defeat the Nazis. The Dutch have never forgotten."

Yeah, Lily Aldridge, Freakin' Patriot Babe

My kind of woman.

#KnowTheDifference Between Memorial Day and Veterans Day

At Twitchy, "#KnowTheDifference: Citizens emphasize the difference between Memorial Day and Veterans Day (Obama flashback)."

Flashback: "The Obama gaffe machine rolls on."

Civilians Increasingly Separated from U.S. Military

This isn't a new story.

Thomas Ricks had a piece on the civil/military divide in the Atlantic back in 1997, and Newsweek had one on the military as a "family business" in 2005. And here's Time from 2011, "An Army Apart: The Widening Military-Civilian Gap."

But the problem isn't just that we have an all-volunteer military (and no draft), as some bloggers are pointing out. We've had wholesale generational changes going on for decades such that a literal microscopic proportion of the American people have any connection to the military and war. In World War Two something like 16 million Americans served in uniform, but beyond that the entire country was a war. It was shared sacrifice for the war effort. From massive wartime rationing to war bonds and victory gardens, the American people went to war. It was a cultural phenomenon that's a distant memory.

In any case, there's a great piece at the Los Angeles Times, "U.S. MILITARY AND CIVILIANS ARE INCREASINGLY DIVIDED" (via Memeorandum):
Multi-generational military families like the Graveses form the heart of the all-volunteer Army, which increasingly is drawing its ranks from the relatively small pool of Americans with historic family, cultural or geographic connections to military service.

While the U.S. waged a war in Vietnam 50 years ago with 2.7 million men conscripted from every segment of society, less than one-half of 1% of the U.S. population is in the armed services today — the lowest rate since World War II. America's recent wars are authorized by a U.S. Congress whose members have the lowest rate of military service in history, led by three successive commanders in chief who never served on active duty.

Surveys suggest that as many as 80% of those who serve come from a family in which a parent or sibling is also in the military. They often live in relative isolation — behind the gates of military installations such as Ft. Bragg or in the deeply military communities like Fayetteville, N.C., that surround them.

The segregation is so pronounced that it can be traced on a map: Some 49% of the 1.3 million active-duty service members in the U.S. are concentrated in just five states — California, Virginia, Texas, North Carolina and Georgia.

The U.S. military today is gradually becoming a separate warrior class, many analysts say, that is becoming increasingly distinct from the public it is charged with protecting.

As the size of the military shrinks, the connections between military personnel and the broad civilian population appear to be growing more distant, the Pew Research Center concluded after a broad 2012 study of both service members and civilians.

Most of the country has experienced little, if any, personal impact from the longest era of war in U.S. history. But those in uniform have seen their lives upended by repeated deployments to war zones, felt the pain of seeing family members and comrades killed and maimed, and endured psychological trauma that many will carry forever, often invisible to their civilian neighbors....

Jerstin Crosby, a former graduate student at the University of North Carolina who now works as a computer artist, said the only direct encounter with the military he can remember was when he taught a Middle Eastern art course to airmen at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base in Goldsboro, N.C.

He respected the airmen's knowledge of Iraq — some seemed to know it better than he did, for all his education — but was also sometimes baffled by them. Why, he wondered, did everyone on base stop their cars at 5 p.m. and stand at attention? Only later did he learn it was a daily show of respect as the nation's flag was lowered.

"I thought it was some kind of prank they were playing on me," he said.

George Baroff, enjoying an outdoor lunch at an organic food co-op in Carrboro one recent afternoon, said he understood the military quite well: He served three years as a draftee during World War II before eventually becoming a psychology professor in nearby Chapel Hill.

Baroff, 90, finds himself startled when people learn of his war record and say, as Americans often do to soldiers these days, "Thank you for your service."

"You never, ever heard that in World War II. And the reason is, everybody served," he said.

In Baroff's view, today's all-volunteer military has been robbed of the sense of shared sacrifice and national purpose that his generation enjoyed six decades ago. Today's soldiers carry a heavier burden, he said, because the public has been disconnected from the universal responsibility and personal commitment required to fight and win wars.

"For us, the war was over in a few years. The enemy surrendered and were no longer a threat," he said. "For soldiers today, the war is never over; the enemy is never defeated." The result, he added, is "a state of perpetual anxiety that the rest of the country doesn't experience." ...

For decades, young cadets in the Reserve Officers' Training Corps, or ROTC, were able to rub shoulders with civilians on America's college campuses. During the height of the defense buildup under President Reagan, there were 420 Army ROTC units. Today, there are only 275 ROTC programs.

At Stanford University, Kaitlyn Benitez-Strine, a 21-year-old senior, was scribbling notes in the back row of her modern Japanese history class recently, listening as her professor cataloged the misdeeds of the American military in occupied postwar Japan.

"People became increasingly resentful of the U.S. military presence," the professor said. "There were crimes by U.S. Army personnel — rapes and murders."

For Benitez-Strine, due to be commissioned as a U.S. Army lieutenant this summer, it was an uncomfortable moment. Her sister, a Marine, is stationed in Okinawa. Her parents were Army officers, as were many other relatives. She grew up in a military community near West Point. But she rarely discusses her background with other students.

Stanford, one of the nation's elite universities, has more than 6,000 undergraduates. Benitez-Strine is one of only 11 in ROTC.

She sometimes feels uncomfortable wearing her uniform on campus, as ROTC requires two days a week. Students "might think I'm a cop or something," she said. "Or they see me as a badass who can kill them at any time."

A 2013 survey by three West Point professors found that the estrangement between the military and civilian worlds is especially pronounced among young people. Many civilians born between 1980 and 2000 "want no part of military life and want it separate from civilian life," according to sociologist Morten G. Ender, one of the study's authors.

On the other side, military recruits in that age range had become "anti-civilian in some ways," the survey found.

"I am irritated by the apathy, lack of patriotic fervor, and generally anti-military and anti-American sentiment" of other students, an unidentified 20-year-old ROTC cadet told the authors. "I often wonder if my forefathers were as filled with disgust and anger when they thought of the people they were fighting to protect as I am."

Benitez-Strine is not as critical of her fellow students. Indeed, the more time she spends in ROTC, the less certain she is about a career in the military.

John F. Nash, Jr. — 1928-2015

He's famous for a number of reasons, not least of which being the subject for the movie "A Beautiful Mind."

An obituary, at the New York Times, "John F. Nash Jr., Mathematician Whose Life Story Inspired ‘A Beautiful Mind,’ Dies at 86."

Salon Wasn't Going to Let the Memorial Day Weekend Pass Without a Disgraceful and Disrespectful Hit Piece

Stay classy progs.

At Twitchy, "‘Died so they could write their drivel': Salon ‘idiots’ slam the military on eve of Memorial Day."