Restoring the Sacred

Monday, May 31, 2010

Memorial Day 2010






George W. Bush
Forty-Third President (2001 to 2009)
Memorial Day Address
at Arlington National Cemetery
Virginia ... May 26, 2008

Thank you. Mr. Secretary, thank you for the kind introduction. Members of my Cabinet, members of the administration, Admiral Mullen, members of the United States Congress, Senator Warner and Congressman Skelton, members of the military, our veterans, honored guests, families of the fallen: Laura and I are honored to be with you on Memorial Day and thank you for coming.

A few moments ago, I placed a wreath upon the tomb of three brave Americans who gave their lives in service to our nation. The names of these honored are

known only to the Creator who delivered them home from the anguish of war -- but their valor is known to us all. It's the same valor that endured the stinging cold of Valley Forge. It is the same valor that planted the proud colors of a great nation on a mountaintop on Iwo Jima. It is the same valor that charged fearlessly through the assault of enemy fire from the mountains of Afghanistan to the deserts of Iraq. It is the valor that has defined the armed forces of the United States of America throughout our history.
Today, we gather to honor those who gave everything to preserve our way of life. The men and women we honor here served for liberty. They sacrificed for liberty. And in countless acts of courage, they died for liberty. From faraway lands, they were returned to cemeteries like this one, where broken hearts received their broken bodies -- they found peace beneath the white headstones in the land they fought to defend.

It is a solemn reminder of the cost of freedom that the number of headstones in a place such as this grows with every new Memorial Day. In a world where freedom is constantly under attack and in a world where our security is challenged, the joys of liberty are often purchased by the sacrifices of those who serve a cause greater than themselves. Today we mourn and remember all who have given their lives in the line of duty. Today we lift up our hearts especially those who've fallen in the past year.

We remember Army Specialist Ronald Tucker of Fountain, Colorado. As a young man, Ronnie was known for having an infectious smile and a prankster's sense of humor. And then he joined the United States Army, which brought out a more mature side in him. Ronnie transformed from a lighthearted teenager into a devoted soldier and a dutiful son who called his mother every day from his post in Iraq. In his final act of duty, less than a month ago, he worked with other members of his unit to build a soccer field for Iraqi children. As he drove back to his base, an enemy bomb robbed him of his life. And today our nation grieves for the loss of Ronnie Tucker.

We remember two Navy SEALS -- Nathan Hardy of Durham, New Hampshire, and Michael Koch of State College, Pennsylvania. Nate and Mike were partners in the field and they were close friends in the Barracks. Through several missions together, they had developed the unique bond of brotherhood that comes from trusting another with your life. They even shared a battlefield tradition: They would often head into battle with American flags clutched to their chests underneath their uniform. Nate and Mike performed this ritual for the last time on February the 4th -- they both laid down their lives in Iraq after being ambushed by terrorists. These two friends spent their last few moments on earth together, doing what they loved most -- defending the United States of America. Today, Nathan Hardy and Mike Koch lay at rest next to each other right here on the grounds of Arlington.

The men and women of American armed forces perform extraordinary acts of heroism every single day. Like the nation they serve, they do not glory in the devastation of war. They also do not flinch from combat when liberty and justice are embattled. Ronald Tucker, Nathan Hardy and Mike Koch make clear, they do not waver -- even in the face of danger.

And so today, here in Washington and across our country, we pay tribute to all who have fallen -- a tribute never equal to the debt they are owed. We will forever honor their memories. We will forever search for their comrades, the POWs and MIAs. And we pledge -- we offer a solemn pledge to persevere and to provide the security for our citizens and secure the peace for which they fought.

The soil of Arlington and other sites is filled with liberty's defenders. It is nourished by their heroism. It is watered by the silent tears of the mothers and fathers, and husbands and wives, and sons and daughters they left behind. Today we pray for God's blessing on all who grieve and ask the Almighty to strengthen and comfort them today and everyday.

On this Memorial Day, I stand before you as the Commander-in-Chief and try to tell you how proud I am at the sacrifice and service of the men and women who wear our uniform. They're an awesome bunch of people and the United States is blessed to have such citizens. (Applause.)

I am humbled by those who have made the ultimate sacrifice that allow a free civilization to endure and flourish. It only remains for us, the heirs of their legacy, to have the courage and the character to follow their lead -- and to preserve America as the greatest nation on earth and the last best hope for mankind.

May God bless you and may God bless America.

video

God Bless Our Troops (especially those who made the ultimate sacrifice) and their families.

SEMPER FI!


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Sunday, May 30, 2010

Sundays are for Beauty - On Eagle's Wings



"On Eagles' Wings"
was composed by Michael Joncas, a Catholic Priest, in 1979. The words are loosely based on Psalm 91 and Isaiah 40:31.


Have a Beautiful Sunday.


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Saturday, May 29, 2010

Sestak: Follow-Up Needed


Hans von Spakovsky of the Heritage Foundation posted this piece on the Foundry Blog site yesterday, and the second comment is from me.

In the below article, quoting from the White House Counsel paper, the key word is "these." Check out this clip:

(White House Counsel) Bauer denies that White House staff directly discussed these offers with Sestak; instead, Rahm Emanuel, the Chief of Staff, enlisted former President Bill Clinton to “raise” these options with Sestak. Sestak “declined the suggested alternatives, remaining committed to his Senate candidacy.”

Here's my theory: The contact both the White House and Sestak addressed yesterday probably did take place, but it was only the first contact. I'm betting there were more contacts (at least one) after Sestak appeared to have a chance to defeat Specter in the primary, and those contacts involved other offers - more enticing than the offer of "additional service to the public in a high-level advisory capacity.”

It's been painful to watch a former two-star Admiral in the world's greatest Navy squirm, dissemble, and do everything possible to avoid answering the questions put to him so far. It makes one wonder about the selection process for promotion to the rank of Admiral.

Water boarding might be necessary to get the whole truth about the White House job offer out of this man.

Here's the article by Hans von Spakovsky.

Sestak Memo Only Raises More Questions | The Foundry: Conservative Policy News.


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Friday, May 28, 2010

Sarah Palin's New Stalker



Joe Mcginnis is not only a stalker; he's also a hypocrite. He has no problem invading the space of Sarah Palin - and her family - but will not even open the door of his rented house to a reporter. He seems to value his own privacy while at the same time depriving the Palin family of theirs. What a guy!

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Thursday, May 27, 2010

Politically Progressive Police Chiefs


Now comes the Police Executive Research Forum, the estimable "think tank" of mostly Left leaning police chiefs from large cities, to weigh in on the new Arizona Immigration Law (wouldn't you love to know how many of these "think tankers" actually read the law?). You can guess (before reading the article from the Washington Post) what position on the new law they took. Hint: they met yesterday with Eric Holder at the Justice Department.

The Washington Post article discussed the opinions of these "apolitical" chiefs of police about the new law. Some of these police professionals are from cities far removed from Arizona, and most are obviously ignorant of, or apathetic to, the problems caused by illegal immigrants in Arizona. Neither condition, though, kept them from speaking out publicly against this perfectly legal action by the Arizona legislature, which happens to be supported by 70 percent of Americans throughout the country.

Try as I might, it was not possible to ignore the ignorance of these pretenders, and I felt compelled to submit the following comment on the Washington Post's website:

OceanKayaker wrote:
It sounds to me like the police chiefs referred to in the article are a lot more political than the elected sheriff Joe Arpaio. It's especially telling that the chief of Montgomery County is against the Arizona law. It was his department that allowed the trespass and harassment of one of the county's citizens last Sunday, by a mob from the SEIU that arrived on the scene in 14 school buses (according to news reports). Then one of his captains tried to explain to Megyn Kelly of Fox News that they (the Montgomery county police department) could not arrest anyone because none of their officers witnessed the trespass or harassment. Their response time to that crime, by the way, had to be measured by using a calendar. Are there no Frank Rizzos left in big city police departments? When police chiefs start talking more like politicians than cops, we're in trouble. 5/26/2010 4:00:12 PM
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In case you're unaware of the travesty in Montgomery County last Sunday, it happens that Nina Easton of Fortune Magazine lives next door to the home of the victim of the trespass and harassment, and had the courage to write a column about the event. You can read her column here. It seems to me that the chief of the police department that failed, so utterly, to handle the situation in its own jurisdiction last Sunday should not be seeking attention two days later by criticizing the efforts in another state to properly address a pressing problem within its borders.

Here's a wild guess: In an all out attempt to stem the growing tide of popular support for the Arizona law, the administration reached out to this group of political law enforcement "intellectuals" and sought their backing for its totally political stance against the will of the Arizona people.


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Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Herman Cain: A True Republican Conservative



This is the speech Herman Cain gave at the Southern Republican Leadership Conference last month. It's a little long (17 minutes) but well worth your while. It's not often we get to hear from a legitimate Conservative voice (even at a Republican conference). If you're not familiar with Herman Cain, you can check out his website here.


H/T: Rtaylor

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Time for a Laugh



It's time to take a break and stop dwelling on the daily scandals emanating from our nation's capitol; it's time to laugh to keep from crying - and this should do the trick.

H/T: pgmolly

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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Our Post-American Vice President



This is from a speech given by Vice President Joe Biden in Brussels, on May 6, 2010. It appeared on Blog.eyeblast.TV, on May 24th. You can read the entire post on Eyeblast.TV.

Joe Biden was probably the only person in the room who did not realize the political (and geopolitical) significance of his words.

The Heritage Foundation published this piece about Biden's Brussels speech this morning.


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Closer to God in a Kayak II



The Sealift Caribbean

A Surprise for Tim

Those early days of paddling that 9-foot kayak out farther and farther in the ocean were special days. The dolphins became close friends and giant sea turtles, although most times pretty skittish, also came to accept my presence in their world. Sharks were hard to spot, because they don’t come to the surface often, but when the water is particularly clear (especially out in the deep water) they can be found.

The first really memorable thrill in my “Frenzy” was the day (in October 1992) when I paddled out to welcome (and surprise) our son, Tim, who was at the time sailing Chief Mate aboard the Sealift Caribbean, a tanker delivering jet fuel to ports on the East Coast. I had called the fuel depot where the Sealift Caribbean was to discharge jet fuel for the Naval Air Station, Jacksonville, to learn the expected arrival time at the depot. I knew the depot to be about two hours from the sea buoy, so I departed Atlantic Beach about one hour before the time I thought the ship would be at the sea buoy. As I started paddling out toward the channel, I noticed what appeared to be a tanker sitting at anchor just North of the sea buoy. As I got closer to the channel, I became convinced that the tanker sitting out there was, in fact, the Sealift Caribbean.

When I reached the channel, somewhere between the middle channel marking buoys and the sea buoy, I expected the tanker to start toward the sea buoy at any moment. I kept paddling east, and knowing that an hour must have elapsed from the time I started from the beach could not understand why the tanker remained sedentary in the water. All of a sudden, I saw out of a corner of my eye, a huge tanker approaching from the eastern horizon bearing down on me at a rather faster pace than I would have expected. That fast approaching tanker, as you might by now have guessed, was the Sealift Caribbean. I paddled my little 9-foot kayak out of the channel toward the south side as quickly as I was able, so as not to cause Tim, on every return to the St Johns River Channel, to recall an unspeakable tragedy.

I somehow got myself and the kayak situated safely on the south side of the channel just in time to see a man in a yellow slicker waving from the bridge wing of the Sealift Caribbean as it cruised past me – I knew it was Tim. I waved back with my paddle, and as soon as the tanker passed, turned back toward Atlantic Beach not without incident. I had totally underestimated the amount of wake given off by a fully loaded tanker traveling at rather slow speed when passing very close to a 9-foot kayak. Following a small pod of dolphins, I managed to negotiate the wake and turn toward home. A full account of the adventure was described by me in a piece entitled “A New old Man,” which, if I can find a copy, will be attached to this opus.

I still remember Tim’s words when I spoke with him later that day by phone. He said "Hey, Dad, I was driving the ship through the channel, with the pilot just aboard, and when I spotted a small black boat completely surrounded by dolphins, I knew it was you.” He said he pointed to the kayak and told the pilot: “That’s my Dad,” and the pilot said: “No s@#t?”


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Monday, May 24, 2010

White House Sestak Scandal Festers



Jeffrey Lord of The American Spectator Blog writes about the above new video, put together by California Congressman Darryl Issa, on the newest scandal involving the Obama White House.

"We call this a bribe."
Congressman Darryl Issa has had enough.
In a stunning, newly released YouTube video, the California Republican Congressman and member of the House Judiciary Committee has put together a Jobsgate montage of White House press secretary Robert Gibbs and Pennsylvania Congressman Joe Sestak in a veritable orgy of denial, evasion, and just plainly obvious dishonesty that could do serious damage not just to the White House but the U.S. Senate candidacy of Sestak..

Read Jeffrey Lord's entire piece here.


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Sunday, May 23, 2010

Sundays are for Beauty - George Winston



American pianist George Winston was born in Michigan, in 1949. He grew up in Eastern Montana, Mississippi, and Florida (where he attended Stetson University in Deland). He currently lives in Santa Cruz, California.

To learn more about the man and his music, go here.


Today is Pentecost, the feast of the universal Church commemorating the Descent of the Holy Ghost upon the Mother of Jesus and His Apostles, fifty days after the Resurrection.

Have a Beautiful Sunday.


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Saturday, May 22, 2010

Final Post on Calderon


(Click to enlarge)

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Video of the Year: Our Heros Come Home



God Bless Our Troops and their families.

Just watch and enjoy.


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It's Time This Hypocrite Went Home



IRONY is a term with which this man is obviously not familiar.

Wonder why he (or somebody) chose CNN, with an almost microscopic viewership, for his only interview during his visit.


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Friday, May 21, 2010

Build the Damn Fence!


Alec Rawls, who writes the Error Theory Blog (link on the right) posted these videos documenting the infiltration of our country by Muslim terrorists through our porous border with our good neighbors to the south.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Large numbers of Muslim terrorists coming over the southern border

Evidence documented by WSBTV in Atlanta. The whole country needs to see this:


Please click on each link, and then click on the speaker symbol at the bottom of the video to increase the volume.

http://www.wsbtv.com/video/23438021/


http://www.wsbtv.com/video/23438712/



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Abby's Out of Cape Town



Abby Sunderland, the repairs to "Wild Eyes" complete, is on her way to finish her journey around the world - alone. Fair Winds and Following Seas, Abby.

Here's her post to ABBY'S BLOG today.

To see previous posts on Abby, click on "Special People" below.


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"And The Winner of The Everybody Draw Mohammad Contest is..."


Nick Gillespie & Matt Welch of Reason.Com posted the winner (out of the more than 190 submissions) of their Everybody Draw Mohammad Contest yesterday.

The drawing above is one of the more than 190 submitted. It was the First Runner-Up. I know, I know: it looks like a pipe, but they explain it all in their post which can be accessed here.

Here's the Second Runner-Up (remember Where's Waldo?):

Gillespie and Welch cover the whole story about the contest, and why it was held, in the post linked above. In case you missed it, here is the earlier post about the contest from Reason.Com that appeared on this Blog, on April 24, 2010.

Here finally is the Grand Prize Winner, and the explanation as to why it won.

Connect the dots and discover that we all must be Spartacus on Everybody Draw Mohammad Day. And that in a free society, every day is Everybody Draw Mohammed Day.


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Our Anti-American Congress



It would be difficult to object to the first minute and a half of Mexican President Felipe Calderon's speech before a joint session of Congress yesterday, but I take exception to his comments thereafter about the new Arizona Immigration Law. His harsh criticism of the right of the Arizona state legislature to pass a law that has overwhelming support not only in Arizona but throughout our entire country is worse than bad manners; it is absolutely insulting. His actions and words, though, pale in comparison with the actions of the Democrats in the audience who stood and applauded his ignorant statements about the Arizona law. Calderon obviously was not the only one in the room who had not read the Arizona law.

Every member of Congress and every administration official (Nancy Pelosi, Eric Holder, Janet Napolitano, and Ken Salazar most prominent among them - Joe Biden at least hesitated before standing up) who stood and applauded the disparaging of our great state of Arizona by the president of a failed country should be ashamed - but I'll bet they're not.


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Thursday, May 20, 2010

Victor Davis Hanson: Marinestan


Military Historian and former Classics Professor Victor Davis Hanson paid tribute to the United States Marine Corps (the finest fighting machine the world has ever seen) in this piece on National Review Online today.

Since World War II, the Marines have turned up almost anywhere that America found itself in a jam against supposedly unconquerable enemies — in such bloody places as Inchon and the Chosin Reservoir in Korea, at Hue and Khe Sanh during the Vietnam War, at the two bloody sieges of Fallujah in Iraq, and now in Afghanistan.

Over the last two centuries, two truths have emerged about the Marine Corps. One, they defeat the toughest of America’s adversaries under the worst of conditions. And two, periodically their way of doing things — and their eccentric culture of self-regard — so bothers our military planners that some higher-ups try either to curb their independence or to end the Corps altogether.

The U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan, retired three-star Army general Karl W. Eikenberry, reportedly made a comment about there being 41 nations serving in Afghanistan — and a 42nd composed of the Marine Corps. One unnamed Obama-administration official was quoted by the Washington Post as saying, “We have better operational coherence with virtually all of our NATO allies than we have with the U.S. Marine Corps.”

The technological and political face of war is always changing. But its essence — organized violence to achieve political ends — has not changed since antiquity. Conflict will remain the same as long as human nature does.

The Marines have always understood that. And from the Marines’ initial mission against the Barbary pirates to the battles in Fallujah, Americans have wanted a maverick Marine Corps — a sort of insurance policy that will keep them safe, just in case.

You can read the whole article by clicking below.
Marinestan - Victor Davis Hanson - National Review Online

SEMPER FIDELIS!


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Abby Sunderland Starts Again Tomorrow


Abby Sunderland is ready to get back to sea tomorrow morning after having "Wild Eyes" repaired in Cape Town. She posted this on her Blog site just a little while ago.

Previous posts on her unscheduled stop in Cape town are here and here.

If you haven't already visited her website, which is loaded with information about her attempt to become the youngest circumnavigator, you can go here.

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Michael Voris: The Deacon's Wife



Dear Friend in Christ,

The wife of a deacon recently gave the homily on Mother's day and you should hear what she said. Please watch this Vortex and pass it along to your friends and family.

Be sure and check out the link in the description ˆ you can watch our Armor of God program FREE! If you like this program, why not sign up for Premium access at http://www.RealCatholicTV.com?

God Bless you,

Michael Voris
~senior executive producer, RealCatholicTV.com


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Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Calderon: Another Non-Reader



That's Mexican President Felipe Calderon displaying his ignorance of Arizona's Immigration Law much as did our attorney general and our secretary of homeland security recently. When one is wedded ideologically to an agenda, it is simply not necessary to be acquainted with facts. Such a one can just make them up to suit the agenda. These three public figures had no problem criticizing the new law even though they had not read it. Both Eric Holder and Janet Napolitano have admitted they hadn't read it before speaking out loudly, and Calderon either didn't read it or he's a god enough liar to become part of our current administration.

Here's a great letter that has appeared elsewhere on the Internet that a lot of us wish we had written.

♣ Letter to Obama, Moving to Mexico
Submitted by InnerG on Sat, 09/19/2009 - 08:57
in Current Events
[Contributor: Daniel W., Phoenix Director: Minuteman Civil Defense Corps]

Moving to Mexico

Dear Mr. President , U. S. Senate and Congress:

I'm planning to move my family and extended family into Mexico for my husband's health, and I would like to ask you to assist me. We're planning to simply walk across the border from the U.S. into Mexico , and we'll need your help to make a few arrangements.
We plan to skip all the legal stuff like visas, passports, immigration quotas and laws. I'm sure they handle those things the same way you do here.

So, would you mind telling your buddy, President Calderon, that I'm on my way over? Please let him know that I will be expecting the following:
1. Free medical care for my entire family.
2. English-speaking government bureaucrats for all services I might need, whether I use them or not.
3. All Mexico government forms, printed in Spanish, need to also be printed in English.
4. I want my kids to be taught Spanish by English-speaking (bi-lingual) teachers.
5. Schools need to include classes on American culture and history.
6. I want my kids to see the American flag flying on the top of the flag pole at their school.
7. Please plan to feed my kids at school for both breakfast and lunch.
8. I will need a local Mexican driver's license so I can get easy access to government services.
9. I do plan to get a car and drive in Mexico , but, I don't plan to purchase car insurance, and I probably won't make any special effort to learn local traffic laws.
10. In case one of the Mexican police officers does not get the memo from their president to leave me alone, please be sure that every patrol car has at least one English-speaking officer.
11. I plan to fly the U.S. flag from my house top, put U S. flag decals on my car, and have a gigantic celebration on July 4th. I do not want any complaints or negative comments from the locals.
12. I would also like to have a nice job without paying any taxes, or have any labor or tax laws enforced on any business I may start.
13. Please have the president tell all the Mexican people to be extremely nice and never say a critical thing about me or my family, or about the strain we might place on their economy.

I know this is an easy request because you already do all these things for all his people who come to the U.S. from Mexico . I am sure that President Calderon won't mind returning the favor if you ask him nicely.

Thank you so much for your kind help.
Sincerely,
U.S. Citizen & Taxpayer

As you probably know, President Calderon is visiting us at the moment, and today at The White House he and our president made a joint appearance, which the White House probably will call a press conference even though no respectable member of the press would label it that, since they were not permitted to ask many questions. Here's President Obama in a short clip from earlier today (click at bottom right to listen).



Got it! Since we're not defined by borders, why build a fence?


H/T: jwrenn
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Cass Sunstein on "Fairness"


That's Cass Sunstein, the White House Information Czar. He wants to regulate the Internet so that all us crazy right wing bloggers will have to include links to all those crazy left wing bloggers on our blog sites - and, he adds, vice versa. He actually goes further than that as you'll learn by reading this post from the Minnesotans for Global Warming Blog. Please make sure to watch the video.

An astute caller to Rush Limbaugh yesterday had a great idea as a follow-up to Czar Sunstein's ridiculous idea: Place a Conservative professor in every college class to give the opposing view to the one typically espoused by the ensconced liberal professor so students can be exposed to both sides. Don't look for Czar Sunstein to adopt that suggestion.

Sunstein taught at the University of Chicago Law School for 27 years (seem to recall someone else from this administration being affiliated with that school) and then moved on to Harvard Law School, where he is currently on leave since joining the Obama administration. That explains everything.


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Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Our Anti-American State Department III


Comes now Scott Johnson, of Power Line Blog, into the debate with the Anti-American Assistant Secretary of State Michael Posner, with this post in which he attaches a letter to Posner from Arizona Senators Kyl and McCain.

To compare in any way the lawful and democratic act of the government of the state of Arizona with the arbitrary abuses of the unelected Chinese Communist Party is inappropriate and offensive.

There is no place for moral equivalency in democracy and human rights policy. The United States is the world's leader in defending the rights of all people. Someone in your position should be proud to proclaim that.


Indeed!

Prior posts on this subject are here and here.


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Closer to God in a Kayak


Beginning in 2007, after my retirement, I began to record the many ruminations that had occupied my mind while kayaking in the Atlantic Ocean near my home. Some are probably too personal to post here, but with a little editing I hope to use Tuesdays to put them all on this Blog so as to preserve them for the grandchildren. My kayaking days, while not over, have been suspended by a recently discovered illness: treatment for which has delayed my return to the ocean until my immune system can protect against the numerous bacteria lurking beneath the water's surface. Today, the post will be devoted only to the Introduction, and I promise to keep all the posts as brief as possible.

MY LIFE AT SEA – ALMOST, OR CLOSER TO GOD IN A KAYAK

INTRODUCTION

The “almost” qualifier is necessary because the vehicle in which I have spent my life at sea, at least for the most part, happens to be a one-person kayak. The sub-title comes from my strong belief, which grows with every passing year, that when paddling my kayak, alone, miles out in the ocean, I am as close to God as one can get while remaining a part of this world.

When we moved to Atlantic Beach, Florida, in 1988, and were lucky enough to be able to buy a townhouse within two blocks of the beach, I knew I needed some kind of affordable boat to get me out on the ocean as often as possible. I have always loved the majesty and the ever-changing characteristics of the ocean; being on the ocean is being closer to God in my mind.

So, in about 1989, we bought a Force 5 sailboat (we had owned a Sunfish sailboat when we lived in Miami, and sailed it regularly on Biscayne Bay off the Rickenbacker Causeway). Unfortunately, I cannot report on too many special times in that Force 5, and the only memories about those outings are of the times (too frequent) when coming back in to shore, a wave would pick up the stern and plant the bow just deep enough to send me flying as if shot out of a slingshot. I’ve had more fun in the water. In short, the Atlantic Ocean is not the ideal place for small sailboats launched from shore, unless they have two hulls.

Then one day in about 1991, while walking on the beach I saw a bearded young man riding the waves in a yellow kayak. When he came in to shore, I approached him and made several inquiries. That man was Jim Stehr, and he lived in a little A-Frame house on the beach, which he rented from his next-door neighbor, a surgeon. Jim and his wife Laurie were teachers so of course they were renting.

Jim was very helpful in explaining everything he knew about his Ocean Kayak Scupper Pro, which he had bought at a garage sale. There was even an 800 number for Ocean Kayak on the bow of the boat. It was not long before I learned of a young entrepreneur, Edward Hogan, who rented kayaks in Hanna Park, which was just about one mile up the beach from where we lived.

It was a Sunday when Cass and I went to Hanna Park and met with Edward Hogan. We asked him if had any kayaks for sale; he did, of course – everything is for sale when you’re dealing with an entrepreneur. He sold me a 9-foot Ocean Kayak Frenzy for $300 and threw in a paddle and a seat. What sounded like a good deal at the time, turned out not to be so good after just a little research. The boat had to be the very first Frenzy manufactured by Ocean Kayak; the paddle broke that first summer, and the seat is a near relic. All that said, I still have the boat (and the seat) but use it only for surfing since trying to paddle a 9-foot kayak for any long distance is for younger, stronger men.

Getting back to that Sunday, which was probably sometime in 1991, Hogan put the Frenzy in his trailer and drove the short distance through Hanna Park to the beach where I was allowed to try out the boat in the ocean. I paddled out through the moderate surf, turned around and headed back to shore. I got knocked out of the boat, and swam to shore behind the boat, which was riding nicely on the wave which had dislodged me. I told Hogan he had a deal, got back in the boat, and headed back out through the surf toward home yelling back to Hogan that Cass would give him a check. She did; and I became the owner of my first kayak.

I remember Hogan yelling to me as I crashed through the surf: “Have you ever kayaked in the ocean before?” and my answering: ”Yes, just a few minutes ago.” I paddled out past the surf, and then some, and turned south toward home. When I saw what we came later to call “The Moon House” (an all white triplex built into the side of the hill at the top of the beach entrance at 19th street), because it looks like it belongs on the moon, I headed in toward the shore. Soon after hitting the surf, I was toppled once again and found myself swimming behind the boat. Cass had by then driven the car back from Hanna Park and witnessed my second spectacular somersault of the day. I made it three in a row after paddling back out one more time to see if I could figure out how to stay in the boat coming through moderate surf. Finally, I decided to cut my losses for the day and allow myself to be content with the knowledge that I was now a kayak owner, and would live to try another day. Falstaff was right when he discoursed on the subjects of discretion and valor.



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Michael Voris: On "Amazing Grace"



Those of us who attended Catholic schools will remember what the Nuns drilled into us: "Sanctifying Grace comes to us through the Sacraments; Actual grace is a temptation to do good." "Amazing Grace" was a protestant hymn with which we were not familiar - and which we never sang in church.

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Our Anti-American State Department II



In case you missed it, John Hinderaker of Power Line Blog was on O'Reilly last night discussing his piece on Power Line on Sunday, which we posted here yesterday. This story can not get enough attention because it shows clearly the anti-American posture of the Obama administration. Please share it with friends and family.


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Laura Bush: Off the Pedestal



Laura Bush fell off the pedestal many of us had her on when she appeared on Larry King Live last week and aired her views on traditional marriage and the right to life. To say her stands on these issues came as a shock would be a colossal understatement.


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Monday, May 17, 2010

More Abbby Sunderland Videos from Cape Town



The above video was made when repairs to "Wild Eyes" were just underway, and this one was just made during her sea trial.





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Our Anti-American State Department


John Hinderaker (photo above) of Power Line Blog posted a blistering rebuke yesterday of Assistant Secretary of State Michael Posner, who has been meeting with the Chinese about Human Rights.

Posner said in addition to talks on freedom of religion and expression, labor rights and rule of law, officials also discussed Chinese complaints about problems with U.S. human rights, which have included crime, poverty, homelessness and racial discrimination.

He said U.S. officials did not whitewash the American record and in fact raised on its [sic] own a new immigration law in Arizona that requires police to ask about a person's immigration status if there is suspicion the person is in the country illegally.

What an idiot! China murdered millions of its citizens who opposed the government's Communist policies and allows most of its people little or no freedom. We, on the other hand, enforce our immigration laws. No, wait--actually we don't. That's why Arizona had to take a shot at it. Oh, by the way, Michael Posner, you clueless moron--China actually does enforce its immigration laws.

Told you it was blistering. You can read Hinderaker's whole post here.

Here's a photo of the "clueless moron" whose talent for moral equivalence is mind boggling.




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