Sunday, May 31, 2015

Rand Paul Is An ASS

This week Rand Paul, loony son of even loonier father Ron Paul, stated that his party, the Republicans, have been wrong on foreign policy for the past fifty years.  He also stated that the USA created ISIS with our policies.  Paul, whom I shall now refer to as "Wrong Rand," is a paleolibertarian, a strange blend of far right and far left politics.  I have always viewed paleos as political schizophrenics.  On foreign policy they agree with the far left Democrats, who believe our only foreign policy is to never intervene, and when we are attacked, to blame ourselves for "blowback," i.e., some ancient wrong we committed against our innocent enemies that caused simmering hostility toward us, finally exploding into violence.  We should humbly admit our sins, and apologize to our attackers for forcing them to attack us in the first place.

Screw you Rand Paul.  It'll be a cold day in Hell before I ever vote for you, in the primaries or even the general election should you make it that far.

Islam NOT WELCOME in the United States of America.

This week a crowd of bikers protested Islamic intolerance in front of a mosque in Phoenix.  They were there to draw pictures of Mohammed.  This was in response to the two (now dead) Muslim thugs who attempted to murder attendees at the "Draw Mohammed" art show in Garland, Texas, a few weeks ago.

The biker/Marine who organized the protest has received numerous death threats from the Religion of Peace.

The public is increasingly aware of how repugnant Islam is to western civilization and society.  They are also more and more fed up with Islamic violence and murder.  My advice to Muslims in the USA:  get the hell out.  We don't want you here.  You are not welcome.

With apologies to Bosch Fawstin

Friday, May 29, 2015

My First Jazz Band Recital Goes Well

Last night my Big Band, now called "the Cats Swing Band," gave a recital to mark the end of the semester. The Apostolic Church on Parr Avenue in Campbell, CA were kind enough to make their church available for our performance, and the pews were filled with friends and family. 

I played my acoustic string bass, and all the band members loved it more than my bass guitar.  My friend and attorney, who plays alto sax in our band, said that there is "no comparison" between the sound of my stand-up bass and my bass guitar, and he favors the former.  I agree.

However, a string bass requires a lot more stamina, and I need to improve mine. I was pooped by the end of the performance.  Playing a stand-up bass is much more physically demanding than playing a bass guitar.

Everyone told me I played quite well, but being my best critic, I am far from satisfied. I was, however, blown away by the enthusiastic audience, who broke into raucous applause when our lead tenor sax player soloed.  They broke into applause several more times before the performance ended.  This was thrilling for me, as I have played in many bands, but have never experienced this before. 

Everyone in the audience was grinning, open-mouthed, from ear to ear, including my always grouchy little wife. Afterwards we had a pot luck dinner. The band was ecstatic over the successful performance.

Listen Here:  Link to Band Performance.

If you are able to listen, please use headphones in order to hear my bass!  

Monday, May 25, 2015

"In Flanders Fields," the Story of Major John McCrae

This post was originally published here on May 27, 2007.  I first read the poem in my sophomore year of high school, and it's impact has stayed with me for more than half a century.  I am reposting it for Memorial Day 2015.


I have always loved the poem "In Flanders Fields," written by Canadian officer John McCrae in World War I. (Flanders is a section of Belgium).  I found his story at the website of Arlington National Cemetery. Here it is.

McCrae's "In Flanders Fields" remains to this day one of the most memorable war poems ever written. It is a lasting legacy of the terrible battle in the Ypres salient in the spring of 1915. Here is the story of the making of that poem:

Although he had been a doctor for years and had served in the South African War, it was impossible to get used to the suffering, the screams, and the blood here, and Major John McCrae had seen and heard enough in his dressing station to last him a lifetime.

As a surgeon attached to the 1st Field Artillery Brigade, Major McCrae, who had joined the McGill faculty in 1900 after graduating from the University of Toronto, had spent seventeen days treating injured men -- Canadians, British, Indians, French, and Germans -- in the Ypres salient.

It had been an ordeal that he had hardly thought possible. McCrae later wrote of it:
"I wish I could embody on paper some of the varied sensations of that seventeen days... Seventeen days of Hades! At the end of the first day if anyone had told us we had to spend seventeen days there, we would have folded our hands and said it could not have been done."

One death particularly affected McCrae. A young friend and former student, Lieut. Alexis Helmer of Ottawa, had been killed by a shell burst on 2 May 1915. Lieutenant Helmer was buried later that day in the little cemetery outside McCrae's dressing station, and McCrae had performed the funeral ceremony in the absence of the chaplain.

The next day, sitting on the back of an ambulance parked near the dressing station beside the Canal de l'Yser, just a few hundred yards north of Ypres, McCrae vented his anguish by composing a poem. The major was no stranger to writing, having authored several medical texts besides dabbling in poetry.

In the nearby cemetery, McCrae could see the wild poppies that sprang up in the ditches in that part of Europe, and he spent twenty minutes of precious rest time scribbling fifteen lines of verse in a notebook.

A young soldier watched him write it. Cyril Allinson, a twenty-two year old sergeant-major, was delivering mail that day when he spotted McCrae. The major looked up as Allinson approached, then went on writing while the sergeant-major stood there quietly. "His face was very tired but calm as we wrote," Allinson recalled. "He looked around from time to time, his eyes straying to Helmer's grave."

When McCrae finished five minutes later, he took his mail from Allinson and, without saying a word, handed his pad to the young NCO. Allinson was moved by what he read:
"The poem was exactly an exact description of the scene in front of us both. He used the word blow in that line because the poppies actually were being blown that morning by a gentle east wind. It never occurred to me at that time that it would ever be published. It seemed to me just an exact description of the scene."
In fact, it was very nearly not published. Dissatisfied with it, McCrae tossed the poem away, but a fellow officer retrieved it and sent it to newspapers in England. The Spectator, in London, rejected it, but Punch published it on 8 December 1915.
Stogie again. Red poppies are flowers whose seeds can remain dormant for years, and are activated into germination when the earth is broken or turned. When the soldiers in Belgium began burying their dead, there was a lot of freshly turned earth. In a few days the fresh graves were ablaze with the red poppies, as if God Himself had decorated the graves.

Because of this, the red poppy became a symbol of Memorial Day and for many years was worn by many to remember the war dead. This is an old tradition we should work to revive.

Here is McCrae's famous and beautiful poem, written 100 years ago this month, on May 3, 1915:

Maj. John McCrae (1872-1918)
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

Memorial Day is Every Day for the Dutch Caretakers of American Graves

Here is a wonderful story of remembrance of the American war dead in Holland.  Hat tip to Always on Watch.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Memorial Day, 2015

In the past I have posted pictures and poems dedicated to our fallen heroes.  Rather than try and top those efforts today, I will merely refer the reader to those earlier posts.  This post is an update of one I created for Memorial Day, 2010.

1.  Memorial Day, 2014:  Did They Die In Vain?  A reflection on how modern politicians have betrayed those who fought and died for our country.

2.  Memorial Day, 2013:  Freedom Isn't Free.  A video.

3.  Memorial Day, 2012:  Better Men Than I.  A commentary  on several great fighting men who made the ultimate sacrifice in war.

4.  Memorial Day, 2011:  The Confederate Memorial in Arlington Cemetery.  Jewish VMI Cadet Moses Ezekiel, a personal hero of mine.

5.  Memorial Day, 2009:  The American Cemetery in Normandy, France, containing the dead from the D-Day invasion of June 6, 1944.

6.  Memorial Day 2008:  Photos from friends, depicting those who died in war.

7.  Memorial Day 2007:  Thoughts on a local sailor who died in 1969.

8. Memorial Day 2006:  The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier; poem, The Bivouac of the Dead.

9.  Major John McCrae:  The Story of "In Flanders Fields."  This is probably the best post on the subject of Memorial Day.

10.  Remembering Pearl Harbor and the lessons of history.

11.  Memorial Service for the Crew of the U.S.S. Grunion (WWII Submarine).  Video and song, the Navy Hymn.

12.  Memorial Day Meditations:  Freedom Isn't Free; Alan Seeger's Life and Poem "I Have a Rendezvous with Death."  This probably ties No. 9 as the best post on the subject of Memorial Day.  Alan Seeger was an American who served with the French Foreign Legion, fighting the Germans in World War I France.  Seeger graduated from Harvard University in 1910 -- 105 years ago.

13.  Song & video:  Battle Hymn of the Republic

14.  Story, Song & video:  America the Beautiful

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Righteous Rants for a Saturday

It's almost futile blogging anymore.  It used to be you could choose one of a half-dozen outrages on society and lampoon the miscreants until your soul was satiated.   In the age of Obama, there are more outrages than you can count.  Which to choose?  Outrageous conduct is now the norm.  There is more aberrational behavior than normal among the populace.  The vampire fighters have diminished so much and the vampires grown, that being normal is not normal anymore.  The defenders of Western Civilization have become a thin line before the advancing hordes of barbarians and collectivists.  Still, we must try.

Take for instance:

1.  Soldiers in high heels.  This was another asinine demonstration of girly-men in the military, doing their best to make our armed forces the laughing stock of the world, diminish morale and morally and mentally emasculate men in uniform.  Two ROTC programs at two universities required its cadets to "walk a mile in her shoes," wearing high heels, to raise awareness of (mostly non-existent) campus sexual assaults on women.  Fred Reed, crusty curmudgeon and master of sarcasm, wrote a public letter to the ROTC commander to express his support.  He writes:
Dear General,
I see that on your watch the Army is turning into a transvestite marching corps in high heels, a Ziegfeld cross-gendered or bisected gay-bath sexual zoo vacuuming up every sort of erotic loony, not to mention becoming a home for unwed mothers and prostitution rings. I commend you. I have always wanted to be defended by a freak show.
Read the rest of it here.

2.  Feminism.  R.S McCain continues to focus on this particular brand of left wing lunacy.  Feminism is actually a war on men, carried out by lesbian freekazoids who insist that heterosexual sex is always rape, is unnatural and forced on women through early brainwashing.  If the human race had subscribed to feminist theory from the beginning of creation, mankind would have gone extinct eons ago.  Listen, feminist morons, you are concave where we men are convex.  There's a reason why nature made us that way. It's a simple intelligence test regarding pegs and holes. My advice:  change your major from women's studies to Home Economics.  At least then you will be trained to do something useful.

3.  "Climate Change."  Future Scenario:   "President Hillary, Putin is bombing Washington State,  the Chinese are invading the Philippines, ISIS is beheading everyone in Atlanta!"

"Never mind that.  What are we going to do about climate change?"

Surely the left's estrangement from reality is no better demonstrated than in their paranoia about non-existent "global warming," aka "climate change."  All of the actual physical data, including temperatures, arctic ice, sea level rise, etc indicates the earth is not warming.  We are actually going through a cooling phase,   So why is there such a panic for a calamity that isn't happening?

Well, of course, there is the left's long-standing conspiracy to take over the economy, take control of the means of production, distribute the goodies as government sees fit, and solidify their long-held desire to install a form of totalitarianism over the United States.  But there is another reason as well.  Whenever leftists are faced with an intractable problem, they can skirt the issue by blaming it on "climate change."  ISIS, the genocidal mass murdering Muslim force now running amok throughout the Middle East, is a result of "climate change."  Apparently, carbon dioxide in the atmosphere turns Arabs into mad killers.

Anything and everything can be blamed on the blind forces of nature, or simply the weather.  Unemployment higher than ever before?  Climate change.  Hillary deleting official emails?  Climate change.  The rise of Putin?  Climate change.  Red China's encroachment in the South China Sea?  Climate change.  Harry Reid's black eye?  Climate change.

If anything bad happens when a Democrat is in office, it's because of the weather.  Since Democrats can't control the weather, they can hardly be held responsible for all the things going wrong in the world today.  If you don't like this column, it's because of climate change.

Friday, May 15, 2015

RIP B.B. King

The great blues musician died yesterday at age 89.  He will be missed.  I always loved to listen to and play bass to his hit, "The Thrill Is Gone."

Heaven is jammin' tonight.  RIP, B.B. King.

Boston Bomber, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, Gets Death Penalty

Dead Terrorist Walking
Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the boyishly cute bomber of the Boston Marathon, was given the death penalty today by a Boston jury.  

Dzhokhar and his older brother Tamerlan planted pressure cooker bombs among the crowd at the 2013 Boston Marathon, killing three people, including an eight year old boy.  The two terrorists later shot to death an M.I.T. police officer.  Seventeen people lost legs, and a couple of hundred more were seriously injured by the bombs.

Tamerlan became a good Muslim terrorist in a shootout with Boston police.  Dzhokhar, however, won't join his brother in death for years or decades while the long appeals process plays out.  

It was a just verdict for a Muslim barbarian.  Read more about it at the N.Y. Times, here.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

The Dead Sea Scrolls: My Visit to Southern California

Wifey and I spent Mother's Day visiting our son in Murrieta, California, south of Los Angeles. To get there, one must drive through Los Angeles with its confusing phalanx of freeways and intense traffic.  It always caused me considerable stress to do it, but this time it was different.  I navigated freeway Hell without much stress.  The reason:  this time I could see well, following two recent operations to remove cataracts.  Driving through L.A. was just ordinary driving, not the usual exercise in terror and chaos.

At my son's home in Murrieta, we watched "Gifted Hands," the 2009 movie about the life of Dr. Ben Carson, starring Cuba Gooding, Jr. as Carson.  It is a very inspiring story, and Carson owes much to his mom for steering him and his brother in the right direction.  His brother became an engineer.

On Monday we drove to Los Angeles to see the Dead Sea Scrolls exhibition.  The scrolls on display were mere fragments of the originals, which largely deteriorated after 2,000 years in a desert cave.  There are scrolls that are nearly intact, but they were not displayed, probably due to the difficulty of transporting them safely.  There was a lot of pottery displayed, including some of the jars in which the scrolls were originally stored.  Most of the pottery was broken into pieces, and reassembled like puzzles to make them whole again.

The Dead Sea Scrolls are ancient, hand-written texts, copies of the Jewish scriptures, from every book except that of Esther.  They were likely written and stored during the time of the Roman occupation, as a means of preserving Jewish holy texts from possible destruction by the invaders.  They were found in eleven caves near the Dead Sea, over a period from 1946 to 1952.

Friday, May 08, 2015

Bosch Fawstin's Award-Winning Drawing of Mohammed

Since many news outlets refuse to publish Fawstin's depiction of the False Prophet, I am publishing it here to show my solidarity with Bosch Fawstin and Pamela Geller.

The True Implications of the Muslim Attack on Pamela Geller

There has bee a lot of discussion about the Muslim attack on Pamela Geller's art show in Texas.  Liberals, as well as some conservatives, have argued that Geller's show was too provocative of Muslims, and unnecessary.  Others defend her right to free speech, the right to criticize Islam and its (false) prophet, Mohammed.  The former are actually arguing for a different standard for Islam and Muslims in America:  all other religions are subject to criticism and even ridicule, but Islam is sacrosanct.  Freedom of speech should be amended, making Islam the exception.

However, the true implications of the attack, like the attack on Charlie Hedbo in France, is that Islam is utterly incompatible with pluralistic democracies.  Where there are large concentrations of Muslims, there will be terrorist attacks on non-believers, because terrorism is a fundamental attribute of Islam, and always has been.  Muslims murder people, as commanded by Mohammed.  Murder to Islam is a sacred rite, a necessary activity for those who seek entrance to Muslim heaven.

Since Islam is incompatible with the safety and security of non-believers, Islam should be extricated from our midst.  Islam should  be banned.  All immigration from Muslim countries should cease, and those Muslims already here should be encouraged to leave.

Monday, May 04, 2015

Pamela Geller's Art Show Attacked in Texas; Two Muslims Become Good Terrorists

It was bound to happen, sooner or later.  Pamela Geller has been perhaps the strongest force in America opposing Islamization of the west, and warning of the violent, subversive nature of Islam.  So a couple of Muslims attacked her "Draw Mohammed" art contest with gunfire.  They shot a security guard before Garland, Texas police sent the two to collect their virgins.  One observer wrote that the chalked outline of the dead terrorist bodies was the best artwork at the show.

The security guard was not seriously injured and is expected to fully recover.

God, I love Texas.  I'd like to move there, especially since the rest of the country is in rapid retreat before the forces of Islamic appeasement, black violence and crime, and socialist, job-killing nonsense.  Texas would be a great place to make a last stand before the return of the Dark Ages.  I surmise there are a lot of like-minded people there.

Liberal pundits and terrorist apologists are, of course, blaming Pamela Geller for defending the First Amendment.  The liberals are all in for appeasement, perfectly willing to sacrifice all of our Constitutional freedoms for temporary safety.  There are better solutions.  Banning Islam altogether would be one of them.  We would not be banning a religion, we would be banning a murder cult bent on our destruction.

Of course, the huge horse's ass named Mark Potok of the Southern Poverty Law Center, a far left organization with virtually no remaining credibility, attacked Geller's sites and organizations as "a hate group."  Yes, she hates, we all hate -- Islam, an evil ideology, the world's most vile religion, mass murderer of millions.  Hating Islam is the moral equivalent of hating cancer, totalitarianism, intolerance, tyranny and murder.  If you don't  hate Islam, you are a damn fool.  Mark Potok is a damn fool.  Islamophobia is a good thing.

As for Pamela Geller, I would only advise this:  buy guns and learn how to shoot them, maintain them and store them.  A good pistol is a must, but an assault rifle and a shotgun are very much recommended.  Become a gun expert, including learning the laws of each state where you live or visit.  Move to Texas, you'll be safer there.

UPDATE:  ISIS has now added Pamela Geller to their list of westerners to be assassinated.  Geller should get a concealed carry permit for a handgun, if she hasn't already done so.

Sunday, May 03, 2015

Ann Coulter's Book: "Mugged: Racial Demagoguery from the Seventies to Obama"

I have been feeling a bit despondent lately about the Left's destruction of race relations to further their agenda.  Liberals, especially those in the media, seek to stoke the fires of black-white racial hatred, with unbelievably biased, irresponsible reporting.  The police throughout the country are being demonized as never before.  Many are expecting more black riots this summer as a result.

I do believe the Left will destroy the country if that is what it takes to rule it.  Many leftists are now advocating a nationalized police force, one of the noted milestones on the road to Fascism.  The ongoing demonization of local police has this national police force as its goal.   A national police force can enforce whatever tyranny the Federals seek to impose.  Gun confiscation, for example.  Another serious erosion of state sovereignty and local governance.

I am currently reading Ann Coulter's book Mugged: Racial Demagoguery from the Seventies to Obama.  The book was written just before the 2012 presidential elections, but is highly relevant in light of the recent Baltimore riots.

Coulter describes a lot of racial history over the past forty years:  the Tawana Brawley scandal, the Rodney King episode, plus several I hadn't heard of before, like the 1972 Harlem Mosque incident.

Four New York cops were called to Farrakan's Muslim mosque in Harlem.  The officer-in-distress call was fake and a set-up.  The cops entered the mosque and were ambushed in a stairwell.  One cop was shot dead, the others beaten to a pulp.  Unbelievably, the Mayor (liberal fool John Lindsay) and other city officials demanded the cops on the scene, the backup cops, leave the scene without arresting anyone.  The cop killer was later identified by painstaking police work, finally brought to trial, and released by a hung jury (one black woman refused to find him guilty, aided by one white liberal woman). In spite of an eyewitness, a member of the mosque, a second trial resulted in an acquittal, and once again, a guilty black man walked.  He walked because he was black, and his murder victim white.

Mayor Lindsay later apologized to Farrakan for the cops who had "invaded" his mosque.  The mayor did not attend the officer's funeral.  If there is a race war coming, you can be sure the Democrats will be stoking the flames and fighting for the black underclass.

Labeling Republicans and conservatives as "racists" is a key tactic in the Democrats' dirty little war.  In spite of that, we should not self-censor on the question of black racism, crime and violence.  We must not waiver in our support for the police, and our opposition to liberal railroading them in Kangaroo courts.

Saturday, May 02, 2015

Black Thug Dies; Black Underclass Burns Down Baltimore; Police Indicted. Same Old Story.

Obviously, something has to be done to curb black violence and lawlessness.  Our current strategy -- Give speeches about racism, apologize to thug's family, persecute the police officers -- isn't working.

How about just telling the truth about black dysfunction, rotten attitudes, violence and racist hatred against all non-blacks?  Truth might be a novel way to begin the search for solutions.

Fred Reed discusses some of these forbidden truths in his essay "Black Power."  He writes:
It is curious that blacks, the least educated thirteen percent of the population, the least productive, most criminal, and most dependent on governmental charity, should dominate national politics. Yet they do. Virtually everything revolves around what blacks want, demand, do, or can’t do. Their power seems without limit.
Fred's essay was written just before the Ferguson riots last year, but everything he says is current and relevant.  Do yourself a favor and read it here.