Monday, November 1, 2010

November 2, 2010

Today is a day for a peaceful revolution. Lets take back OUR country. Raise your flags. Regardless the outcome today, voting without reservation or oppression is a right given only to the free. We the citizens of this great country can unite today regardless of party and direct our representatives with the power of a vote. Lets fix this economy and stop asking the country to bail us out. This country was founded by and brought to power by men and women who stood up for themselves, got dirty and even died for their beliefs. We can not dishonor them now by sitting idly by and watching their sacrifices be forgotten and disrespected. We are the patriots now. What happens now can be echoed in the History books as a showing of great strength and patriotism. So tomorrow when your kids go to school stop and say the Pledge of Allegiance, say a prayer for this country and ask GOD to give us all the bravery and strength to rebuild this country. Rebuild this country in the vision of our founding fathers. A vision supported by GOD which with blood sweat and tears became America. Today is our day America. What you do today will be echoed by your children. Vote, vote informed and let them see you do it. Make sure the children of this country learn what a privilege it is. You'll know you have taught them of the honor when you see the pride in their eyes as they look at you wearing the "I voted" sticker on your chest. No more mooching off our government, no more asking them to provide. Get out their America and lets rebuild this land that we love. The time is now! The time is today!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


OK, It's time I chime in on this one. When deciding how I would respond to this bill which is now law I did something most did not. I read the bill. I read it a couple times. I then read it again looking for the racism, the authority to racial profile given to police, the new powers police had to stop vehicles and people based solely on a hunch that it is occupied by illegal aliens. I also looked for a place where it "requires" Officers to take action taking away discretion. Oh, I must have missed it the first three times, lets read it again....nope still didn't find it.

What I did find is a bunch of familiar verbage that law enforcement uses, applies and can in most cases quote the definition of (Sheriff Dupnick excluded.) So lets run through some of the definitions as defined by the supreme court and recorded by The Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of law.

Reasonable Suspicion - ":an objectively justifiable suspicion that is based on specific facts or circumstances and that justifies stopping and sometimes searching (as by frisking) a person thought to be involved in criminal activity at the time"
in the explanations under this definition as given by the Supreme Court the expanded for clarification to say :

"A police officer stopping a person must be able to point to specific facts or circumstances even though the level of suspicion need not rise to that of the belief that is supported by probable cause. A reasonable suspicion is more than a hunch."

Probable Cause - "Probable cause is a level of reasonable belief, based on facts that can be articulated, that is required to sue a person in civil court or to arrest and prosecute a person in criminal court. Before a person can be sued or arrested and prosecuted, the civil plaintiff or police and prosecutor must possess enough facts that would lead a reasonable person to believe that the claim or charge is true."

Probable cause - is a term that has been around since the building of our constitution. it is referenced in the Fourth Amendment which reads "it is the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be searched."

Ok, you may look at the definition of Probable cause and the fourth amendment and determine that requiring identification is a search therefore raising the necessary criteria necessary to ask for it to the level of Probable Cause. Not so fast. It's been tried before and guess what? There was a ruling brought down by the Supreme Court.

Courtesy of Wikipedia:
In Hiibel v. Sixth Judicial District Court of Nevada, 542 U.S. 177 (2004), the Supreme Court of the United States held that such laws did not violate the Fourth Amendment prohibition on unreasonable searches and seizures or the Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination. The Court understood the Nevada statute to mean that a detained person could satisfy the Nevada law by simply stating his name.n the United States, interactions between police and citizens fall into three general categories: consensual (“contact” or “conversation”), detention (often called a Terry stop, after Terry v. Ohio, 392 U.S. 1 (1968)), or arrest. “Stop and identify” laws pertain to detentions.

Different obligations apply to drivers of automobiles, who generally are required by state vehicle codes to present a driver’s license to a police officer upon request.

A lot of legal terms, but bear with me.. They all come into play in this new law.

There are three types of Police/citizen contacts:


At any time, a police officer may approach a person and ask questions. The objective may simply be a friendly conversation; however, the officer also may suspect involvement in a crime, but lack “specific and articulable facts”[3] that would justify a detention or arrest, and hope to obtain these facts from the questioning. The person approached is not required to identify herself or answer any other questions, and may leave at any time.[4] Police are not usually required to tell a person that she is free to decline to answer questions and go about her business;[5] however, a person can usually determine whether the interaction is consensual by asking, “Am I free to go?”[6][7]


A person is detained when circumstances are such that a reasonable person would believe he is not free to leave.[8]

Police may briefly detain a person if they have reasonable suspicion that the person has committed, is committing, or is about to commit a crime. Many state laws explicitly grant this authority; in Terry v. Ohio, the U.S. Supreme Court established it in all jurisdictions, regardless of explicit mention in state or local laws. Police may conduct a limited search for weapons (known as a “frisk”) if they reasonably suspect that the person to be detained may be armed and dangerous.

Police may question a person detained in a Terry stop, but in general, the detainee is not required to answer.[9] However, many states have “stop and identify” laws that explicitly require a person detained under the conditions of Terry to identify himself to a police officer, and in some cases, provide additional information.

Before Hiibel, it was unresolved whether a detainee could be arrested and prosecuted for refusing to identify himself. Authority on this issue was split among the federal circuit courts of appeal,[10] and the U.S. Supreme Court twice expressly refused to address the question.[11] In Hiibel, the Court held, in a 5-4 decision, that a Nevada “stop and identify” law did not violate the United States Constitution. The Court’s opinion implied that a detainee was not required to produce written identification, but could satisfy the requirement merely by stating his name. Some “stop and identify” laws do not require that a detainee identify himself, but allow refusal to do so to be considered along with other factors in determining whether there is probable cause to arrest.

As of January 2010, the Supreme Court has not addressed the validity of requirements that a detainee provide information other than his name.


While detention requires only that police have reasonable suspicion that a person is involved in criminal activity, an arrest requires that the officer have probable cause to believe that the person has committed a crime. Although some states require police to inform the person of the intent to make the arrest and the cause for the arrest,[12] it is not always obvious when a detention becomes an arrest. After making an arrest, police may search a person, her belongings, and her immediate surroundings.

Whether an arrested person must identify herself may depend on the jurisdiction in which the arrest occurs. If a person is under arrest and police wish to question her, they are required to inform the person of her Fifth-Amendment right to remain silent by giving a Miranda warning. However, Miranda does not apply to biographical data necessary to complete booking.[13][14] It is not clear whether a “stop and identify” law could compel giving one’s name after being arrested, although some states have laws that specifically require an arrested person to give her name and other biographical information,[15] and some state courts[16][17] have held that refusal to give one’s name constitutes obstructing a public officer. As a practical matter, an arrested person who refused to give her name would have little chance of obtaining a prompt release.

Arizona has a stop and identify statute under ARS Tit. 13, §2412

Ok, If you read the bill you may not need any more clarification so I have included a link to the bill here. SENATE BILL 1070

Go ahead, read it. I'll wait...

Done, or have you still not read it. Did you read it before? Great!

Lets start by looking at what new powers this Law gives law enforcement. They are few, but there are some.

When the law goes into effect it will be a class 1 Misdemeanor under this law to be an illegal alien. Law Enforcement can (but are not required to) arrest you if they have Probable Cause to believe you are in the country illegally. They can Detain you if they have reasonable suspicion for the means of an investigation. Race can not be a factor in the circumstances which are used to reach Probable Cause (it's in the law.)

Under current laws Law Enforcement can hold a person under reasonable suspicion of illegal immigration for a reasonable period of time until Border Patrol (or ICE) can respond to conduct an investigation of their own. Different departments interpret a reasonable period of time differently the courts defined it simply as "Reasonable time is that amount of time which is fairly necessary, conveniently, to do whatever is required to be done, as soon as circumstances permit." The courts have found on numerous occasions that drive time from the Border Patrol Officer's location to the location of the detaining Officer is a reasonable time. This definition is however admittedly vague and this is why different departments choose to interpret it in their own way often erring on the side of caution with specific time restraints.

Since this new law makes it a crime to be an illegal alien it relieves that requirement if the contact rises to the standard of probable cause. Because the person is now under arrest, law enforcement Officer's can detain the person with less restrictions. They can transport them to the Jail for detention under the law where ICE can put a hold on the prisoner restricting their release only into their custody. They can Cite and release them although this would be in violation of the intent of the law. They can transport them to Border Patrol and cite and release the alien into the custody of Border Patrol or the same can be done by Border Patrol responding to the Officer. Once deported to their country of Origin (or even before) an arrestee can petition the US Government through the US Consulate for a Visa under the pretense of fulfilling their promise to appear in court for the underlying offense.

Sheriff Dupnick is all concerned about the cost to Pima County for the costs of detention these folks cause. Under ARS13-1509D it states "IN ADDITION TO ANY OTHER PENALTY PRESCRIBED BY LAW, THE COURT SHALL ORDER THE PERSON TO PAY JAIL COSTS AND AN ADDITIONAL ASSESSMENT IN THE FOLLOWING AMOUNTS:

Further more it should be noted that the response time for Border Patrol is usually reasonable (usually drive time from their Tucson branch) and if they are not available, a deputy can simply transport the arrestee to them. This means the arrestee never stays in Jail and therefor never undergoes a fee to Pima County for their detention there. It should also be noted that the law allows the Officer/Deputy to use his/her discretion as to when they will enforce to law. If it is not practical to enforce the law due to low man power or a high priority response necessary to another event the subject would be let off with a warning in hopes to catch them another day.

Another action that can be taken by Law Enforcement is impoundment of a vehicle driven by an illegal alien. This is simply an amendment to the 30-day-impound requirement currently mandated by the state. Currently anyone pulled over for an offense found driving will have their car towed at the driver's expense if certain criteria are met. Such criteria are: The driver's driving privilege is suspended, cancelled or revoked for any reason, The driver is under arrest for extreme DUI or if the driver is under 21 and arrested for DUI the last criteria is if the driver has never been issued a Driver's license in any jurisdiction (including foreign countries.)

These are the nuts and bolt differences that the typical law enforcement Officer will see with this law. Most jurisdictions will release their arrestees directly to Border Patrol. Some agencies may have geographic limitations which restrict this so they will be forced to detain the arrestee in jail so that Border Patrol can respond for them.

No legal immigrant should ever be deported under this new law if they are following the laws already established under federal law. Under Federal law, any person issued a VISA or passport SHALL have it under their immediate control at all times. Simply present the valid VISA and you have nothing to fear of this law. If you are driving a motor vehicle in Arizona you are required to carry a Driver's License in your possession. Failure to do so is a class 1 Misdemeanor and you can bee booked into jail on that offense alone. Once in Jail they will determine your identity and ultimately your status and if you are here illegally you will be turned over to ICE.

Illegal immigration threatens the safety of this nations citizens. Request for help from the Federal government have not been denied, but rather ignored completely. It was necessary to enact this kind of enforcement to keep the people of Arizona safe. This law is not intended to be a fix all, it is simply a step in the right direction.

Updated viewpoint on recent reactions:

OK, will illegal aliens be apprehensive about approaching police? Of corse they will. All criminals are, not just them. The drug dealer doesn't want to see the cops, neither does someone who has warrants for their arrest. Do we make drug dealing legal or cancel the warrants just so they will have that warm and fuzzy feeling when they see a cop? NO!, we don't. Thats part of it isn't it? They get legal or live constantly looking over their shoulder. The guilt is sometimes a motivator for someone to pay fines or bonds on a warrant. That is the way the legal system works. The truth is, the illegal alien already apprehensive of police contact. They already don't approach police. They are reluctant to be witnesses. To make things worse they come from a country where their form of police are corrupt. They bring with them to this country the mistrust in Law Enforcement they had there. This law will not change a thing. You are kidding yourself if you think it will.

The Feds are arguing that law enforcement officers are interfering with Federal law and have no power to enforce the law in their recent suit. What they call interfering I call aid. They would be getting help from law enforcement not interference. The only thing law enforcement may be interfering with is the Obama Administrations policy of non-enforcement. Well hello Laws are made to be enforced.
Be careful, no power to enforce Federal law. If you push that through it may just balloon on you. Local police enforce federal law all the time. They serve federal warrants, they respond to bank robberies, they arrest suspects for mail theft, they arrest for illegal weapon sales, and many other offenses. That all could stop if this is pushed through. The only reason local law enforcement would need to respond is when the public well being is an issue. In other words, if that bank gets robbed and the suspect is no longer on scene police will not respond to even look for them. think about it folks. Most banks don't call until they leave any more. Most don't even call until they have a chance to clear their lobby of customers because most often the other customers are unaware that the bank was even robbed and they want to keep it that way. They want their customers to feel safe in the bank. The truth is, the state has the authority to make laws that do not violate the state and nations constitution or the freedoms given the people by them. You will notice that the Federal suit does not contend that as an issue. The Police/Sheriff can enforce the law and the suit is nothing more than an attempt at a stall tactic. They want to stall the law until after November's elections or if they are really good until after the next presidential election. It is a political ball. This is why they waited so long for the suit, so they could stall as long as possible.

The arguments against the bill are all flawed. There is not one valid argument presented. This is nothing more than those that are proponents of open borders and the illegal aliens themselves scared that the law will be enforced. Stop crying and get legal!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Yesterday's Council meeting a breath of fresh air, but I'm still cautious.

I watched the council meeting last night and saw something I had never seen before. Those Council members that showed where not the normal blank faces we are used to seeing. They actually looked as if they were paying attention. Normally they sit there glassy eyed and wait as people tell them how they feel. When all that is done they vote however they had decided prior to the meeting without taking any of those comments into consideration. They all had obviously spoken to each other prior to decide what would pass and who need to vote the other way to help their political future.

Last night the forum started with Kos. Kos started by saying he had gone through the budget as he expects all the other council members had and presented a huge list of items he had for instigation regarding elimination or cuts. Kos was the only one to propose cuts or even acknowledge he had looked at the budget. Before he could even get cooking on his suggestions Fimbres made a motion to throw out the renters tax and it passed easily. The Council members and our illustrious mayor stood in awe as he laid out the cost cuts. His experience really came through in his presentation and he showed each and every person who voted for him they had made a good choice.

One more surprising thing happened. Scott and even Rodney backed him up. Scott made a motion to stop paying outside agencies until the budget is resolved and it was approved by all except Uhlich. Rodney grandstanded a bit and admonished the city manager for pointing TPD and TFD to support the renters tax after telling them they would face huge cuts if not approved. It was grandstanding but liked it.

Most who would read this blog probably watched this meeting so 'll go on to two things I noticed.

First, Uhlich. She seemed to get very nervous when Kos presented his ideas for cuts. She was scrambling to accept the city manager's plan. You could see it in her eyes. She was trying to protect those she had made promises to, that much was obvious. She actually moved to accept the manager's plan as a whole without going over it line item by line item. Well, Uhlich, that is how you make a budget, one line item at a time. I really don't care who you promised free rent or disbursements too. She continually interrupted Kos's presentation. She did not want them to be presented. She was not successful though. Instead the remaining panel members showed their appreciation for his efforts and ordered the city manager to investigate each item. Way to go. Uhlich acted as if she had somewhere else to be and could not be bothered to look at the budget. Uhlich, I hope you enjoyed your narrow win because it may just be your last.

I was impressed that the city council and the city manager were open to each department looking to see if pay cuts or furlough's would better fit each department. TPD specifically asked for furlough. this makes since. A furlough means you don't have to fight for the pay to be increased when the crisis is over. I then listened as TFD said they would have to close stations to do a furlough. This doesn't make since. Are you going to furlough an entire station at once? no you furlough 1 person per station at a time and rotate through until all have had their turn. Losing 1 person should not close a station. if a firefighter calls in sick, do they close the station? I don't really see the point. It's their choice I guess, but |I don't know why you would want to give up the pay. We all know that the city can make promises to give back the pay, but will they? No, they won't, they never do. It will be a fight. TPD has given up item after item to assist the city budget and in lieu of losing other items. They never get them back and never will. Once you give it away you do not get it back.

I am encouraged by the meeting, however one meeting will not lead me to throw caution to the wind. They are however, politicians.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Me a racist?

First of all I have to make a statement to keep me out of trouble with those whom I associate. Below(and all I blog or post on) are MY personal opinions only. You may agree, you may disagree. I do not represent any group, organization, political candidate or government agency.

About a month ago I responded to a video put out by Derechos Humanos (Click here for the postings and video link) A group of illegal immigrants were arrested for Identity theft and some were deported while others were still serving jail time before their deportation. The group used this video to depict themselves as victim's. In the video they proclaim that they are not criminals and have done nothing wrong. They claim to be victims and cry about jail not being fun etc. etc. They are criminals. They broke the law, not much more to say about that.

I am tired of people being arrested and blaming Law Enforcement. If they didn't commit the crime in the first place then Law Enforcement wouldn't have been attracted to them. This was not the result of a two hour investigation, it was the result of a multi agency investigation which took their case a Judge getting arrest warrants for those involved. They showed the judge they had sufficient evidence for their arrest to constitute probable cause for a warrant. This doesn't mean they are guilty yet, they have a trial. Well, they were found guilty prior to this video. Yet these folks blame Law Enforcement for their arrests. I simply was impressed that the current laws were enforced. This is an attitude which has lead one poster to believe I am a racist. He has even tried to get me fired at work, but luckily my personal opinions are protected by the first amendment and my employer is well aware of this.

In the video produced by the group they chose to translate the video using English subtitles over verbal Spanish and verbal Spanish translations over the English text they inserted. I commented on this to explain another problem Mexican citizens have with their government which they bring over. The issue of illiteracy. Through classes I have taken, both at work and even a Spanish language class in college I had learned that when speaking with a Mexican citizen Spanish speaker it is more important to know how to speak the language than write it. One reason is for simple communication purposes, the other is because a large portion of that society can not read Spanish and can only speak it. This is certainly not true for the entire population but is certainly more prevalent in those of the lower class.

OK, what class of people from Mexico most predominantly come into the United States illegally? The lower class obviously. Now I want to be careful here. I know this is not a steadfast rule and I don't want to make the impression that no educated citizens of Mexico who are here illegally. Likewise, I don't want to make the assumption that if you are uneducated you can not be here through legal means.

I have extensive experience in the dealing with both legal and illegal immigrants. My experience has supported my teachings. Most often those illegal aliens from Mexico I come into contact with can not read or write the Spanish language. Some can not even read it enough to be able to read their license plates to know which is to be posted on the front of their vehicle and which goes on the rear of the vehicle. The plates are clearly marked in the Spanish language, but when asked, they can not read it.

Now does this viewpoint make me a racist? or Are my observations based on teachings and experiences and generally considered to be accurate? I'll let you decide for yourself, but I believe it is the later.

Now I have focused only on illegal immigrants from Mexico in this post. That is simply because they are the most common in this region of the United States. I have seen very little from other countries (1 from Jamaica and a few from European nations.) Look at a map and you will see why. No oceans between our borders, that's why.

I really take exception to being called racist. I strive to treat each person to whom I deal with respect regardless of race. I will give them the respect they give me and often a hole lot more. I am a strong Christian and I see anything less to be a sin. I stand behind my viewpoints. If I am wrong in any way I will entertain an adult discussion in the matter. A two way discussion. If you prove me wrong I will freely admit it. I will not entertain yelling and childish discourse. I have learned quite a bit by having good debates. I have been wrong before. Am I wrong now?

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Iraq. Should we have gone back?

I was recently tweeted by DrCMG. She tweeted in response to my retweet of a report that millions were being spent in ad campaigns for the "Health Reform Bill." Her response "Millions have been spent on an unnecessary war and secret assassination attempts" A response obviously given to elicit a response. So in my normal style, never baking down from a debate or argument, I went on a tirade in Twitter responses. I probably put too much attack in it along with my points and scared her from any fight because all she gave me back was "What r U talking abt?! You think we should have been in Iraq? Cool..we disagree, but take it light Just philosophy Urs N min" She didn't like me pointing out fact based arguments against her. Even corrected her to say it was Billions not millions spent which I guess strengthens her argument, but since BO has spent trillions, not really.

If your argument is money, BHO has spent many times more in six months than Bush did during the entire war Pre-cease-fire and post cease-fire combined. And with it he has done nothing, but put us further into a recession.

This brought me into the argument about the Iraq war. At least I began to stew a bit. It was obvious she would not debate me (Again, probably my fault she apparently thinks I'm a loon) So I figured I'd lay out my point of view on the subject.

First, I am not so much going to focus on the tactics used to fight this war. That would amount to Monday morning quarter backing and being IN the heat of the decision making is much different than sitting back as the years pass and picking it apart. I agree we have made some tactical mistakes and also many victories. This is true with any war. What I would rather look at is why are we there?

First what was the history in this region. The middle east has been a territory of turmoil since the beginning of recorded history. The fights include many religious beliefs in conflict with one another and disputes over land rights. This wasn't only with Israel. When the boundaries were written out to determine borders in the region many took exception to it. In our generation one of these Countries with a land dispute was Iraq. They took exception that when the boundaries were written it left them land locked from the Persian Gulf. Saddam Hussein Abd al-Majid al-Tikriti mostly know simply as Saddam Hussein had risen to power as a dictator over Iraq. Once a Vice President under an ailing General(his cousin who died under suspicious circumstances) he commanded control of an extremely large army. Eventually he used that army to take control of the Oil monopoly and eventually became a self appointed President and dictator over the country. He killed any person who opposed him or threatened his position to include his own family members. He was a member of the Baath Party which was created in the 1940's by Michel Aflaq who was a supporter and emulator of the Nazi party. The political party supported and emulated the Nazi Party in many ways. Hussein idolized Stalin openly and like Stalin he assassinated any who opposed him to include Women and children. Hundreds died. Some who attempted to overthrow him, but others simply because they were in the same villiage or because they opposed the Baath party. He murdered Kurds who opposed him by the hundreds. His oppression by murder can only be equated to as genocide. Ok, so is the picture clear yet? Is this a guy you would call a humanitarian or someone you'd like your daughter to marry? Clearly the answer is NO!

In 1991 hussein gathered his troops and attacked his neighbor Kuwait hoping he could win and have clear access to the Persian Gulf. Kuwait being an ally to the United States and the UN was defended by the UN. A defense which predominately was made up of US forces (not to undermine the roll other countries played, but we took the lead.) The UN combined forces destroyed Iraqi forces(then the second largest army in the world.) Most of his forces surrendered as soon as the saw allied forces or even camera crews. His most loyal troops retreated burning any oil field they came by as they passed(How many carbon credits did the US earn for putting out those fires :-)) It was a decisive victory, but the war never officially ended. Much like the North Korean war there was simply a cease-fire agreement (officially we were still at war with both) As a part of the cease-fire agreement UN inspectors were to be allowed to inspect sites where chemical weapons were once produced. Also under the cease-fire iraq was to destroy the chemical weapons they had already produced. An embargo was in effect. The embargo put in place many trade sanctions and allowed the search of any ships in/out of iraq to insure they did not contain weapons materials. Saddam Hussein at first looked as if he would comply, but soon he stopped letting the inspectors in the country, once there they could not inspect sites they had specifically designated in the cease-fire and they were not being allowed to board ships bearing the Iraqi flag. Diplomacy prevailed for some time and rumors abound that Hussein was again developing a chemical weapons program. This claim was supported by the lack of cooperation with the UN inspectors. Still diplomacy continued until Hussein continually refused to support the embargo. Rumors were now being supported with intelligence that chemical weapons were being made in Iraq. Intelligence which was promoted by Hussein in an attempt at power over the UN. The UN had come to be known as a power which would not support the use of force to back up diplomacy, especially with its members and Iraq is a member of the UN. In March of 2003 the United States concluded that diplomacy had reached its end and the disregard of the cease-fire agreement could no longer be tolerated. The US and allied troops attacked Iraq in hopes to overthrow Hussein and install a locally independent democracy in the country. We were also to look for the rumored chemical weapons or WMD's(a point Bush pushed as one of the major motivations for the war.) This action was backed by the American public and by both parties in the House. The American public expected another sweeping victory which would be over a month or two after experiencing the sweeping victory in Kuwait. Hussein was found hiding in a hole on December 13, 2003. Just 9 months after cease-fire dissolved. This was not fast enough and the American public turned on president Bush for it. No WMD's were reported found and several tactical mistakes were made. Most importantly the support of the Iraqi people which was expected did not occur. After so many years of a ruthless dictator they did not know how to stand up for themselves any longer and even after his capture Hussein had a following of loyal troops who were killing numerous Iraqi's and Americans. The American press spouted out the numbers of Americans dead every day. While each death was a tragic loss, the numbers were extremely low, especially when put side by side to any previous American war. More soldiers have died in single battles in previous wars than have died in Iraq. Again I definitely do not want to undermine the tragedy that is associated with any hero who honorably died in service.

The numbers have bolstered. It is impossible for me to find the correct number of Americans who died in battle because they are combined with those who die in Iraq because of natural causes and training exercises. Let me clarify again for the Liberals who will say I don't care about human life. I am making this distinction because soldiers die during peace time and during war. Accidents happen in the United States all the time. Helicopters crash, there are accidents with weapons, falls, parachutes don't open. These are numbers that we will see regardless if they are in Iraq or the US. I am of the belief that even the deaths attributed to training accidents or even car accidents while not a work are honorable deaths of a hero. They train to be the best and so they are. Hero is also a word I do not use easily. I am not a hero, a sports figure is not a hero, I recently heard Michael Jackson was a hero, No. Heroes can be found every day in our armed forces though.

So the arguments against the war are usually motivated by emotion and almost always based on these numbers. People expected a sweeping victory with minimal loss of American life. Well, comparatively that is exactly what we have achieved. When you attack a countries army in it's homeland it will always be more difficult that meeting them on land foreign to them. They are dug in, they have built in defenses. In every war there will be collateral damage. A term I don't really like because it in itself minimizes the tragedy it is speaking to. Hussein used school children as human shields. Bombs missed and innocent people died. Tragic indeed, but the precision attacks of this war are a far cry from the carpet bombings of old. Let us also not forget that iraq was an ally to Al Qaeda and was a home to terrorist AS WELL. Not a major hub for Al Qaeda, but in the center of a region that is. Just an attributing factor to our motivations of the cease fire (although Bush clung to this one pretty tightly too after 9-11.)

Arguments against ending the cease-fire:

We didn't give diplomacy a chance:

in 1991 the cease-fire was signed (itself a sign of diplomacy in action)
in 2003 it dissolved. That is over ten years of diplomacy met with nothing but distain by Hussein

Bush Lied:

Ok, this one is just stupid. It has to do with the fact that no WMD's were located. First this doesn't mean they didn't exist. Second there has been no evidence found which supports the claim that Bush or the House knew there were no WMD's in fact everything they had showed otherwise and Hussein was playing into the claims in hopes to institute fear and leverage.

Bush is just finishing what his father did not, it's revenge:

His father is the one who signed the cease-fire. There may have been a certain amount of distain because his fathers cease-fire was not being respected, but that doesn't change the fact that any violation of the cease -fire would be grounds for assault. We tolerated many continued violations before breaking the cease-fire.

Bush is a baby killer:

I've said enough above on this one, not going to respond further to those loons.

So did I and do I support the Iraq war breaking of the cease-fire? YES and YES.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Observations of younger voters.

I was speaking to a co-worker who was out at Tea Party gathering at Gabby Giffords. He had spoken with ThebigShmoog and knew I was a friend. He was there for the whole event. No doubt he heard what was said and read the signs. His comments to me were this, "What's wrong with them wanting to stand out in the extreme heat?"and "It looked like a party, lots of cheering and honking" I asked If he knew why they were there and was told, "Yeah, I read the signs but I don't really know anything about that stuff." he was accompanied by another of my Co-workers who were there who expressed the same views.

I looked at them and just said"Well if you don't know about it now, you will if it gets passed and then it will be to late to complain and a lot harder to get rid of." I also pointed out that a lot of the issues will effect them directly at work.

I looked at them and realized they are both in their early 20's. They have no interest in getting involved. So I spoke to them some more. Told them about Cap and Trade and Health Care Reform Bills. I spoke to them about the Police and Fire Initiative and Fair Tax. I figured they would have heard about some of them, but they had not. I told them not to believe me and look at it on their own. I actually saw a spark as they realized how all of these issues really could effect them. Now I don't know if they will get involved or if they'll let it go, but at least they know a little something to get them started.

I realized that I am not the norm. I Have been interested in the happenings of Politics since high School and before I was old enough to vote. They could care less. This is why Obama was going after the young vote. They are a clean slate and if they only hear one side that is the side they will side with. How do we get the message out to this age group? I don't work in marketing, but obviously we need to get out to the venues where they draw in the younger voters. If you know some of these younger voters and you have the opportunity we need to bring it up. They can no longer sit back and let politics happen to them, they need to be involved. We need to get to them before the colleges do. We need to teach them to come to their own conclusions, research the issues and not allow some professor to bend their minds in the wrong direction. They will get interested somewhere in the future. Do we want it to be after colleges get a hold of them and turn them into mindless drones for the far left or teach them to research and understand the issues at hand before developing an opinion? The answer is obvious, but how? I am not the guy to give that answer. I have ideas, but I ask you, how do we get young voters to inform themselves and vote? One thing I do know, Parents need to teach their children by example and sit down and explain to them how to come to their own conclusions, read and research the issues. They need to do it early and the best way is for parents to get involved themselves. My children watch as I research issues, read large Bills and write my representatives. I speak with them about it in terms they can understand. I have no doubt they will do the same as they reach voting age.

Maybe not my best post, but was an observation I thought was worth writing about.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Vote, But don't "JUST VOTE"

Vote, by all means, Vote! I want you to, your Country needs you to! Vote! It is your DUTY. It is something hardly anyone does anymore. Your countries leaders are being determined by 25% of the voting people at best. In some places(here) it can be much lower. So go vote. Tell your friends to vote. Tell your co-workers and anyone you can spark up a conversation with. The checker at the grocery store. Teach your kids how important it is. Tell everyone!

Wait! Not yet! Don't go running off just yet. What are you going to tell them? Will it be a regurgitation of of a popular campaign and you tell them "Just Vote!" No no no, that won't do. What do you tell them? "Vote Republican" or "Vote Conservative", "Vote Democrat" or "Vote Liberal." NO! That won't do either.

"Just Vote" is one of the worst campaigns ever. It may have got a few to the poles sure, but to "Just Vote" is more of a discredit to your country than not voting at all. "Vote and Vote Informed" is what I say. I tell them to listen to ALL the media. The majority Liberal media and the fringe Conservative media. If you are voting for a candidate, then research the candidate. See what they are for and what they are against. If you don't understand those subjects then look into them until you do. If you are voting for a Proposition or researching a Bill, then read the whole thing. Read the interpretations as given and ask questions about those you don't understand. Ask who sponsors the bill to explain it to you (they will.) Ask their opposition to explain why they oppose it (they should.) When it comes to electing a judge or other official, check and see how they ruled on the issues you care about. AND THIS IS IMPORTANT. If you could not explain who the representative/official is and what they stand for, if you can't explain the bill/proposition and why you support or oppose it to a 9 year old in a manner that they can understand it then YOU don't understand it well enough. You need to research it more. That's right, the responsibility of voting is not a small one and you can't decide who you are going to vote for or what you are going to vote on while sitting at the breakfast table the morning of the vote. You don't act like a child and vote for the guy you think will win just to be on the winning side either. You are not a child. Don't act like one!

Now you may not have time to research everything. That is OK, I am a very busy guy, but I make the time. I still don't have enough time to know all the issues and candidates sometimes. So I choose which things are most important to me and research those in that order. Whether it be a candidate, Ordinance or whatever, I prioritize them. Hopefully I learn them all. As I learn some the order might change as I see hints of one item on the list that may cause me more interest. Knowing the issues as they arise helps. First, you can contact your current representatives and let them know how you feel. Second, when it comes to voting for candidates you can look at how the current representatives voted and gauge for yourself how they did quickly because you already know the issues.

ANOTHER IMPORTANT STEP. Once you have done all the research you can and know how you are going to vote you actually have to go do it. And when you get there and see all those items on the ballot don't get vapor lock, don't vote the (D) or the (R) just because that is your party. Stick with your research. Vote what you know. More importantly DON'T VOTE FOR WHAT YOU DON'T KNOW. That's right! This isn't a Scantron test at school where you are better off guessing than leaving it blank. You leave it blank. You don't risk voting for the guy who will not represent YOU. YOU LEAVE IT BLANK. You will be counted on all the items you vote for and abstain from those you don't by simply leaving it blank.


Wake up America. If the current financial situation isn't enough to get you fired up to do the research than what will?