Sunday, November 23, 2014

Dangerous in DC

For John, BLUFRemember Harry Truman's quip, "If you want a friend in Washington, get a dog."  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Here is a blog post from "Doctrine Man", a sharp-eyed critic of the US Military.  It is a 20 question interview with Writer Tom Ricks, and titled "The Beard that Roared".  If you are interested in the views of a former reporter and current author with a focus on the US Military, then you can visit the site.

I have extracted part of Question 5 because it says something about our Nation's Capitol:

5. You have somewhat of a reputation for being irascible.  What makes you “tick”?

Kurt Campbell once observed to me that I didn’t want anything from anybody, and that made me both unusual and dangerous in Washington.  I found that flattering.  But it is true that I have what I want — the life of an independent writer.

For reference, Dr Kurt Campbell is a former Assistant Secretary of State.

Regards  —  Cliff

  Famous for writing Fiasco:  The American Military Adventure in Iraq, 2003 to 2005, but his most recent book is The Generals:  American Military Command from World War II to Today, a not very flattering look at today's General Officers.

Marion Barry RIP

For John, BLUFLife is short, so we need to make the most of it  Not necessarily the way Mayor Barry did some times.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

You're just standing there and all of a sudden everyone is old.  Latest indicator is the death of former DC Mayor Marion Barry, at age 78.
Barry D.C. council spokeswoman LaToya Foster says he died shortly after midnight Sunday at a hospital in Washington.  He had battled kidney problems stemming from diabetes and high blood pressure and underwent a kidney transplant in February 2009.
Maybe today's Gospel asks the right question:
For I was hungry and you gave me food,
I was thirsty and you gave me drink,
a stranger and you welcomed me,
naked and you clothed me,
ill and you cared for me,
in prison and you visited me.’
Matthew 25:35-36
In the final judgment the question will be, did he?  Perhaps the answer will be yes.

Regards  —  Cliff

College Kids Flunk Another Pop Quiz

For John, BLUFPolitics doesn't seem to be a big deal on Campus.  Can we blame George?  Ask Marie on Monday.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

I am posting this quiz of college students down in Texas because it isn't as bad as the one of Harvard Students recently done or the Flag thing out at Berkeley.

My buddy Juan sent this, with a note about "the generation who will be taking care of us in our dotage".

Regards  —  Cliff

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Don't Get Attached to Your Health Insurance

For John, BLUFOnce the bureaucracy starts, there is no natural stopping point.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

We were pointed to the Reason website, who apparently was watching the Friday dump from the Federal Government, including a 300 page regulatory proposal that would potentially change your health insurance, every year.  Sort of a "If you like your ObamaCare health insurance you can keep it, unless HHS doesn't like it."  In which case they will switch you to another one, of lower cost.

Hat tip to Memeorandum.

Regards  —  Cliff

Suppressing the Vote

For John, BLUFIf Nancy needed her vote it would have happened in a heartbeat.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

I know that Congress is out of town, enjoying a Thanksgiving Day break, and this is old news, with this Roll Call article going back to 18 November, but still, there is the irony of it—Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi suppressing the vote.  "Democrats Fume in Caucus as Duckworth Denied Vote".  And it looks like Roll Call send a woman to cover the story, Ms Emma Dumain.

Yes, adding to the irony is the fact that there is fear amongst the leaders of the Democrat Caucus of a slippery slope.  Rep Tammy Duckworth is 46 years old and pregnant and surprise of surprises, her Doctor has her on a no travel order.  Actually, that is the good news.  I have a daughter in law of about the same age who got sent to bed about half way through her pregnancy.

The leaders of the Democrat Caucus won't give Rep Duckworth a waiver to vote by proxy.  Is it that old slippery slope?  Is this because she is preggers?  Because she is a disabled Vet.  Because she is Asian-American?  Because she wouldn't have voted the way Ms Pelosi would have liked?

Hat tip to the Instapundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Reception of New Immigration Rules

For John, BLUFThis isn't about immigration reform.  This is about picking a fight with Congress.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

This article from The International New York Times suggests President Obama's plan for dealing with illegal immigrants, announced this last Thursday, has not been smoothly received everywhere.  The Reporter is Julia Preston and the article, datelined 21 November, is "As Immigration Rules Shift, Migrants’ Joy Is Tempered".

First, there is the process of providing papers to illegal immigrants.

Under the president’s new program, undocumented immigrants who are parents of American citizens or legal permanent residents and have been in the United States for more than five years will receive three-year deportation deferrals and work permits.  They have to submit fingerprints, pass criminal background checks and pay an application fee of $465.
So, if you are an illegal immigrant ("undocumented" in the words of the Reporter and the Editor) and you meet the criteria you get a three year pass on deportation.  Then what?  Maybe those nasty old Republicans in the US House of Representatives will make it permanent.

I see from the article that fixing the problem could take up to six months to begin.

Administration officials said they will begin accepting application “no later” than May, but have given few details of how the process will work.
That isn't helpful to folks who have lost jobs recently because their "irregular" status has been uncovered.  Where is the humanitarian effort in that?

Finally, there are those who followed the rules and came here by the book.

And immigrants who came here legally expressed a sense of betrayal, wondering if foreigners who did not follow the rules were gaining advantages they did not have.
I think in terms economic advantages, coming here legally was a good thing.  And, no fear of the neighbors turning you in to the Immigration Authorities.  On the other hand, what about the person who has been trying to follow the rules and was told that they have to wait until next year.  Where is the equity in that?  This effort by the Administration seems to reward corruption.

The key question is, is this move by the Administration legal?  I am willing to give the Administration the benefit of the doubt.  That said, if it is legal, what incompetence has caused the Administration to delay implementation for some five and a half years?  What insensitivity let the bureaucrats and their political appointee bosses drag their heels on this?  Pretty ugly, if you ask me.  Unless, of course, it is all about picking a fight with a new Republican Congress, in which case it is brilliant.

Moe Lane is correct.

Regards  —  Cliff

Friday, November 21, 2014

Hidden Agendas

For John, BLUFStay calm and carry on.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Barack Obama wants you to be angry.  The Democrats NEED you to be angry.  So don't be.  Smile, shake your head ruefully, and say no.  Nicely.
This is from Moe Lane, who blogs and does the twitter dance.

Moe is right on the money.

Hat tip to the Instapundit.

Regards  —  Cliff