Lies And The Lying Lawyer Who Tells Them

Tracy Martin and Sybrina Fulton the parents of Trayvon Martin, are extremely fortunate that George Zimmerman picked the highly incompetent lawyer, Craig Sonner, to be his attorney.

With the release of the police surveillance video by ABC News that clearly shows an unmarked, unbruised, and un-bloodied Zimmerman, Sonner, once again clearly uncomfortable on a TV interview, at least twice describes the video as “grainy”. The term grainy typically refers to video or film footage that was either shot in very poor lighting or the poor quality of the footage due to the age of the film or the video tape. Neither is the case here. By necessity, both the outside and inside of the police station are brightly lit. I’m not at the Sanford Police station but I would guess they’re using a digital video system. If they did to a transfer to tape, the cassette would be brand new since every recording of a prisoner being brought in and booked would have to be saved as evidence.

Sonner also said that one of the cops looked at the back of Zimmerman’s head. His implication is that the cop was examining the damage. Look closely at the video. There are two cops with Zimmerman next to the patrol car. As he’s being searched and frisked, neither cop ever looks at the back of Zimmerman’s head. They’re both taller than him and they don’t even peek at the top of his head. A third cop walks into the frame and opens the station door for the other two cops to walk Zimmerman inside. The two cops walk Zimmerman to the door and the one behind him is looking down at the ground. Once inside, none of the three cops look at Zimmerman’s head at all. In fact, it looks like a three were making a conscious effort to not really look at him at all. Near the end of the video, the cop behind him quickly looks away to the side as Zimmerman walks out of frame.

If there’s one thing worse than a lying lawyer, it’s a blatantly lying lawyer.


The Four Marx Brothers Of The Supreme Court

The four right-wing justices on the U.S. Supreme Court would be as laughable as the Four Marx Brothers if they were not sitting on the U.S. Supreme Court.

But the analogy falters somewhat when you examine it more closely because while the Marx Brothers enjoyed skewering the Establishment in their films, the four clowns ARE the Establishment. But to press on with the analogy, they’re like the Four Marx Brothers but without a Groucho since none of them possess the requisite quick wit. You’ve got two Chicos, Alito and Scalia, and the one who remains silent—Thomas–is Harpo. In fact I can hear Scalia saying to Thomas “Hey, Pinky, why you a-no a-talk all the time?” Roberts is Zeppo, the bland brother with the slicked back hair.

But now instead of causing havoc at high society balls, they’re poised to create havoc with the much maligned (we’ll get to that part later) Affordable Care Act. And this is the high level of discourse we have on today’s U.S. Supreme Court:

Justice Scalia comparing the health care market to the supermarket:

“Could you define the market — everybody has to buy food sooner or later, so you define the market as food, therefore, everybody is in the market; therefore, you can make people buy broccoli.” Can’t fully blame the Republicans for this idiocy that has brought down around the four clowns’ feet what was once a great institution; the Democrats confirmed his nomination to the Court.

If Scalia wasn’t already being absurd enough, he wasn’t done yet:

“[I]f people don’t buy cars, the price that those who do buy cars pay will have to be higher,” the Supreme Court justice said. “So you could say in order to bring the price down, you are hurting these other people by not buying a car.”

Scalia has no idea how widely he missed the point and why this is such an bad analogy. So, I’ll educate him: Everybody doesn’t need to buy a car, but everybody will at one time need health care, and all but the top 1% or 2% will not be able to pay for it out of pocket. And that is where health insurance comes in and that’s what makes Scalia incredibly stupid on this issue.

Justice Alito, not to be out-Chico-ed by Scalia, put his own “Why A Duck” absurdist spin on the hearing.

“I don’t see the difference. You can get burial insurance. You can get health insurance. Most people are going to need health care, almost everybody.  Everybody is going to be buried or cremated at some point.”

No, EVERYONE will need health care. There’s question if everybody will be buried or cremated at some point, depending on place and manner of death. In the wealthy circles that Alito runs around in, I’m sure they have insurance for everything for every wealthy everybody that he knows. But down here in the real world, if a loved one dies, we have to pony up the money for burial or cremation as best we can for their services. We pay cash, check or charge, or even make monthly payments if we can. We have bills to pay, we have food to buy, we have rent or mortgage due, we need to put food on the table. Burial insurance? That’s a luxury we can’t afford.

Healthcare insurance is a necessity because any day you can be in a auto accident, have a pain that’s a symptom of cancer, have a child with an ear infection or high fever from strep throat. Without health insurance, it’s a six-hour wait in the ER to even have a nurse bring you into the examination room.

Why a Justice? Because Bush appointed him and the Senate Democrats helped confirm him, as they did all four Marx Brothers.

You’d think Chief Justice Roberts should display more intelligence and a clearer grasp of the issue, seeing as how he’s Chief Justice and all. Think again:

“So can the government require you to buy a cell phone because that would facilitate responding when you need emergency services? You can just dial 911 no matter where you are?…You don’t know when you’re going to need police assistance. You can’t predict the extent to emergency response that you’ll need. But when you do, and the government provides it.”

Chief Justice Roberts, that’s the whole damn idea behind mandatory health insurance because you never know when you’re going to need it.

And as always, “Harpo” Thomas remains mute.

So, you don’t want the Government ordering you to carry health insurance if you’re not covered by an employer-provided health plan? OK, let’s say you’re badly injured in an auto accident and you stupidly declined medical coverage on your auto insurance policy because you were cheap. Or to make the scenario even better—you have no auto insurance at all.

So, there you are in the ER having been chauffeured there in the Fire Dept. limousine. Your injuries are so bad that you’re wheeled into surgery for a few hours, then transferred to ICU where you stay for a few days. You stabilize enough so that you’re transferred to regular bed for another two weeks’ stay. After you’re released, you undergo six months of physical therapy to further attempt to repair your body from the damage you suffered. After the six months you’ve gotten a few medical bills in the mail and you add up the grand total: $150,000 (which may be an estimate on the low end). You could have gotten a Master’s Degree at a state university for that much. Hell, you can buy a whole house on acreage for less than that these days.

OK, so how to pay.  Do you call the hospital, the anesthesiologist, the City Fire Department, the surgeons, the physical therapist, the durable medical equipment people and all the other providers and ask “Do you take Visa?” Do you try to arrange monthly payments for the rest of your life? Do you just ignore it all and allow your creditors to issue a flock of judgments against you? Or do you file for bankruptcy and let everyone else take the hit for your bills? And you know what? Under the bankruptcy reform law in 2005, it can now cost you $2000 if you hire a bankruptcy attorney. And the Chapter 7 filing fee is $299 and $274 for Chapter 13, not including the fees for mandatory bankruptcy counseling certificates.

One reason medical costs are so high is that many patients have a habit of not paying their bills. Yeah, the price of liability/malpractice insurance is sky high, but the freeloaders on the system have been instrumental in the high cost of medicine in this country.

And this is the intent of the government mandate to carry health insurance: why should I have to pay for you because you refuse to carry medical insurance? Because the less people insured, the more it costs for those who are in premiums and in cost of care. The more people splashing around in the pool, the less it costs for everyone.

So, why do 47% of the American people oppose Obamacare? Because the Republicans excel in selling lies and fear to the American people while the Obama Administration sucks at selling the truth.

You can’t even trust what might be regarded as non-right wing media. Take the very troubled and perhaps soon to disappear Yahoo.

Yahoo is trying to have it both ways. Actually, it’s something called The Week. What is The Week and who is the staff behind it? Don’t know. The byline is merely “The Week’s Editorial Staff”.  The Week staff could all work for Fox for all we know. They headlined one story: Why Is ObamaCare So Unpopular–4 Theories. The headline of a 2nd story: Why Obama Is Embracing The Term ObamaCare–4 Theories.

Why in an election year would Obama embrace a term that most people oppose? First of all, out of the four theories the story uses, 3 are right wing who oppose ObamaCare: Reason, Bloomberg Businessweek, and US News & World Report. The 4th—Slate (not exactly a progressive mag)–merely says that the Obama Admin stunk at getting the message out to offset the the unrelenting drubbing from the Repugs. In fact, if you google articles on ObamaCare, by and large you will see hits from right wing sites opposing it. No Truthout, no Huffington Post (except an article stating why most people don’t t like it), no Think Progress, no Talking Points Memo. It’s as if all progressive sites have been scrubbed from existence, as far as Google is concerned.

A New York Times/CBS poll (how corporate can you get?) says 47% oppose ObamaCare. Now, did the poll question actually include the perjorative term “ObamaCare”? The article and the poll never say. Leave it to Rachel Maddow to put it all in perspective.

And to put this in greater perspective, Kaiser Health Tracking Poll found that when it’s explained to people that the mandate doesn’t apply to people covered by employer-provided health plans, 61% then favor Obamacare. In fact, the mandate would only apply to 2% of the population.

Funny how you don’t see this hardly at all reported in the media:

Most Oppose at Least Part of Overhaul, Poll Finds

Two-thirds of Americans want the Supreme Court to overturn some or all of the health care law, even though large majorities support a few of its major aspects, according to a poll by The New York Times and CBS News.

So, perhaps the 47% of Americans who oppose Obamacare isn’t really 47% at all but something a lot lower.

After 3 years of propaganda war waged by the right wing in which Obama never engaged the enemy in kind, people are now convinced that what will help them will hurt them. But when you break down different features of ObamaCare, like pre-existing conditions a thing of the post, no maximum dollar limits for payment of services, kids can stay on their parents’ plans until they’re 26, then the approval level skyrockets. People don’t like the mandate, which the Obama Admin screwed up by not comparing it to the state mandates to carry liability auto insurance–which everyone accepts—over and over again. People carry auto insurance for two reasons: they don’t have to pay out of pocket for the other guy’s damage AND they want to get paid if the other guy doesn’t have insurance.

If you don’t have auto insurance, the court fines them if you’re caught. What is the difference if you’re fined by the courts for not having health insurance? The Obama Admin has been so completely inept about conveying these simple messages. The person he chose to plead the government’s case, Solicitor General Donald Verrilli, appears to be very inept at pleading the government’s case. It’s as if Obama himself weren’t personally wedded to his own legislation so much. Nah, couldn’t be.

Meanwhile, the Four Marx Brothers, being the clowns they are, sit in judgment as only they can. Scalia and Alito selling their “tootsy frootsy” ice cream analogies, Thomas throwing a “Gookie” (look it up), and Roberts trying for cleverness but not making it. For a comedy team, this performance wasn’t so funny.

Mayday! Mayday! The GOP Is Being Shot Down In Flames

There are a number of military analogies to apply to today’s GOP: being shot down in flames, a bunker mentality from being surrounded on all sides, on a suicide mission, launching all of their nuclear missiles hoping a few get through.

The national agenda the GOP has carefully and methodically assembled over the past 40 years is falling apart.  Assault on women’s rights, including anti-abortion? The damn women are standing up and fighting back. Why, you can’t even call a young female law student a slut and a prostitute on national radio and get away with it.

Lower corporate taxes? A Democratic President has usurped that issue our from under their very noses by proposing it as part of his budget.

ObamaCare? They may have to live with most or all of it for another two years if the Supreme Court decides to kick the whole thing down the road. And the more they know about it, the more Americans like ObamaCare.

Fear of foreigners? Immigrants, legal and otherwise, are tired of being pushed around and having their children forbidden from going to college after graduated from the public schools system.

Gun control? Murder one black teenage boy in cold blood and they make an international incident out of it.

Starting with Occupy Wall Street, continuing with the successful online campaign to get censorship of the Internet set aside—for now—all of the oppressed groups and people just fed up with right wing Republican tea party politics are standing up and saying “No more!” And they’re fighting back. Florida governor Rick Scott has announced a special state task force will be looking into the Trayvon Martin shooting as well as looking at changing any state laws that allowed it to occur (Stand Your Ground). The Department of Justice will be investigating the Sanford, Fl. police department (who just lost their police chief, temporarily or otherwise) for possible civil rights violations, incompetence, corruption, and racism.

Even as I write this, the Republicans are making “Hail Mary” passes across the country: attempting to gather marchers for “religious freedom” from health care reform, attempting to pass a flurry of new anti-woman legislation, attempting to pass even more voter suppression laws.

But they look at Wisconsin and see their Republican governor and four Republican state senators up for recall. One of the senators decided to resign while the resigning was good and she’s gone, taking with her the Republican majority in the state Senate.

Lastly, the GOP looks at the slate of clowns with big shiny red noses galumping around the country in their big, floppy clown shoes while the President sits in the Oval Office laughing with enjoyment at their performances. You’ve got Mittens The Clown dressed in a top hat and doing magic tricks with an Etch-A-Sketch. You’ve the Rick The Clown with the painted-on sad face, crying because the Devil is in the D.C. details. You’ve got Newt The Clown wearing a moon rocket and leaping unsuccessfully into the air as he runs around the stage. And finally, you’ve got Ron The Clown with his head barely peeking out from his giant clown suit, always falling down onto the floor and refusing any help to get back up. After the performance, President Obama comes out onstage like Ed Sullivan saying, “Thank you Republican clowns for that wonderful bit of comedy.”

But truth be told, the floppy shoes guys are flopping all over the country. Hardly any Republican voters beyond the troupe’s base is coming out to see them. Voting is way down among registered Republicans where primaries have so far been held. These guys are the 2012 version of the Not Ready For Primetime Players. Who knew the Republicans had a Minor League?

So, the GOP plane is going down in flames while all on board are throwing gasoline on the fire and not one of them knows how to land that thing.

Politics has always been cyclical. Don’t like being shut out of power? Just wait a few decades until your turn comes around again. But the Democrats can’t afford to get too comfy with their anticipated victory. After all, the Democratic ship of state’s got a few leaky holes and is taking on a little bit of water. The Keystone XL pipeline Oklahoma crude and Canadian tar sands oils flow into one hole. The Afghan War is pouring water into another hole. But the largest hole of all, the leak that could sink the ship, is the hole that American jobs keep falling through.  Yes, it hasn’t gotten any bigger, hasn’t shrunk by much, but it’s enough to possibly cause the Obama Administration to pull a Titanic.

But that’s where the Republican clown troupe comes in. They’ve proven themselves extremely adept at pumping water out of the ship and into their Clown Car as they perform their wonderful bit of comedy.

So, as the Republican Party sinks quickly on the Right, we bid a fond farewell to the presidential aspirations of the GOP as we mix metaphors and turn off our radar screens so we don’t see the search beacons leading us to the eventual crash site. The Republicans are big on the DIY (do-it-yourself) lifestyle. They got themselves into this mess, they can get themselves out. They’ve already begun eating their own to survive.

Trayvon Martin And The Republican KISS Of Death

Republican voters believe in the KISS system, as in Keep It Simple, Stupid. First, because they’re all stupid. Being stupid, they need it kept simple.

Keep in mind that the rich and powerful who run the Republican Party are highly intelligent and understand how to convert complex issues into simple-to-remember talking points.  You don’t get that rich and that powerful by being stupid, unless you inherited your rich and powerfulness from a smart rich and powerful pater familias.

For Republican voters, they don’t have to remember that more domestic oil is being produced by the U.S. than ever before. They don’t have to write down that U.S. oil imports are down because consumption is at record lows, while U.S. oil exports are up. They don’t have to understand how oil speculators account for 85 cents of every dollar per gallon increase in the price of gasoline. Nope, for them, the Republican Party has distilled the entire issue into three little words: drill, baby, drill. One word is even repeated for greater simplicity.

Abortion and birth control are converted to “religious freedom”. Taxation laws, which are way beyond any Republican voter’s ability to comprehend, are boiled down to “economic freedom”. Anybody can understand freedom, right? Republicans are all about personal freedom, except if the freedom includes marrying who you want and getting an abortion if you choose to.

Simple is as simple does to the Forrest Gump Party. That’s why the “Stand Your Ground” and “Castle Doctrine” laws pushed nationwide by ALEC and the NRA have been so popular with Republicans. With the latter, a resident has the right to use lethal force to defend themselves against an intruder or anyone else who they “reasonably” perceive as presenting a hostile threat to their personal being—personal property not included. If they blow the perceived assailant away using the Castle Doctrine, it’s stay out of jail free card.  With the former, if someone “reasonably” feels they are in mortal danger, they can use lethal force on the perceived threat anywhere they perceive themselves to be in mortal danger: on a public street, or in the backyard of a condo in a gated community. They don’t have to turn around and run, they can pull out their concealed 9mm semiautomatic handgun and fire at will, or whatever the perceived assailant’s first name happens to be.

It’s perfect in its simplicity. The shooter/victim is also innocent; the shot/assailant is always guilty—and dead. No thought required because the law has been written so there doesn’t have to be any. These cases are notoriously hard to prosecute and get a conviction because the court can only hear evidence from the shooter that they felt their life was in danger. The deceased assailant always remains strangely silent, offering no testimony on their behalf. Case dismissed, if it even got that far.

But George Zimmerman of Sanford, FL, apparently won’t use “Stand Your Ground” as his defense for shooting Trayvon Martin. He’s going for self-defense. You see he was armed only with that 9mm semiautomatic handgun against Trayvon’s bag of Skittles and a bottle of iced tea. Trayvon could have opened that bag of Skittles and poured it down Zimmerman’s throat, causing him to possibly choke. And that bottle of iced tea? That would smart something fierce if Zimmerman were hit upside the head with it. Just think of the abject fear Zimmerman felt when trailing the kid after 911 distinctly told him not to. If he had seen that bag of Skittles gripped at Trayvon’s waistband, he had no way of knowing if that bag were empty or if it was loaded with Skittles. And he wasn’t about to take any chances.

Stand Your Ground makes it easy for cops to not do their duty, too. A dead male black teenager walking alone through a primarily white gated community at night? Undoubtedly he represented a perceived threat to somebody and it’s a good thing a decent and honorable Neighborhood Watch captain stood his ground and dispatched this menace to white-owned private property. The law made it unnecessary to test Zimmerman for drugs and alcohol or to even verify that he actually wasn’t officially part of any Neighborhood Watch group. Had Zimmerman actually been part of Neighborhood Watch group, he would have known that Rule One is you can’t carry firearms and Rule Two is you don’t stand your ground in front of a perceived assailant. You call 911 and let the police stand THEIR ground.

Since Stand Your Ground requires no thought or moral considerations, the Sanford Police Chief, the Mayor, the City Manager, and the City Attorney thought nothing of sweeping the whole incident under the rug and going on about their business. George Zimmerman apparently thought nothing of the 17-year-old life he’d taken when he “reasonably” perceived his own life to be in danger from a black male teenager packing a bag of Skittles and a bottle of iced tea.

Drill, baby, drill. Shoot, baby, shoot. Very simple to remember. And one word is repeated for even greater simplicity.

The GOP War On The Year Of The Woman

In what some (including me) are calling “The Year Of The Woman”, which is also an election year, the GOP is throwing everything they’ve got at what they perceive as the poor defenseless females.

Why on earth—did I say this is an election year?—what they be doing this? Witness these assaults:

Rush Limbaugh calls an average young woman both a slut and prostitute on his national radio show. And the hits just keep on coming.

The attempt in Virginia to push transvaginal ultrasound probes up a pregnant woman’s woo-woo.

The Blunt Amendment which would allowed employers to not cover birth control services and medications in their health plans if it offended their moral or religious sensibilities (corporations are people too, my friend).

The Tennessee anti-abortion bill that would make public everything an anti-abortion terrorist would need to know about where to find the evil doctor and patient who committed the dastardly act.

The Arizona anti-birth control bill—sponsored by a Republican woman legislator who obviously loathes herself for being a Repubican woman legislator and is taking it out on others of her gender—would force female employees to prove to their bosses that they need contraception for medical conditions. The men’s version of this legislation is surely to follow anon.

These are just the ones that quickly come to mind; the nation is awash right now in Republican introduced and passed legislation that tells women their bodies are not their own but belong to the Man—literally.

So, this raises the question-did I mention that this is an election year?—why is the GOP placing women’s rights in a killzone when it’s women who will determine who will be (re-)elected President this year? I mean, if you’re running for Homecoming Queen, do you tell all the girls to vote for you because they’re too ugly to win anyway? If you’re competing to become a cooking show star, do you tell the judges that they’re not competent to judge the imaginary food at your 5-year-old daughter’s tea party? If you’re Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum, Newt Gingrich, or Ron Paul and you’re running for President, do you tell women that not only abortion but birth control itself is immoral and shouldn’t be paid for by federal tax dollars? You say that to a group making up over 50% of the electorate? Women both register to vote and actually vote in larger numbers than men.

In other words, in all these situations, do you piss off the very people you need to vote you into the job you want? For Republicans, the answer to this question is an emphatic yes. But why? This is obviously a nationally coordinated attack on women because there aren’t enough smart Republicans in all those states to come with bills like these on their own. This hasn’t been confirmed, but if I shine the special secret fluorescent light on all this legislation, the fingerprints of ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Council) are all over it because ALEC’s stock in trade is setting the national agenda for the Republican Party to be implemented at the state level. But, and I repeat—why?

One theory is that the Republicans see this as The Year Of The Republican Party since they’ve worked so hard to foster hatred and dissent against everything that is President Obama, including President Obama himself. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell told the American public that holding Obama to a single term is Job One for the Republicans. He doesn’t want to be made out a liar in public, does he? That would tend to make the American Public mistrust anything and everything a Republican says. His old Kentucky home might not even re-elect him next time around.

In this Year Of The Republican Party, goes this theory, they see this year as their best shot to recapture The White House and get all this women’s rights-trampling legislation enacted into law. They’re betting their entire wad on one roll of the dice. It’s “Guys and Dolls” time and the Party is Sky Masterson.

Problem is, the dice are loaded. At this point in the Republican Presidential Candidate Comedy Cavalcade, NO ONE likes ANY of the candidates. Mitt Romney remains the front runner, a position he’s doing his damnedest to lose. Rick Santorum is like a runner attempting to use “drafting” to stay right in back of Romney in a track race, only someone (like himself) keeps moving the finish line further away from him. The remaining two are like punch-drunk prizefighters out on their feet but not yet fallen to the canvas for the down and out count.

So, this is the War Of The Year Of The Republican Party Against The Year Of The Woman. The casualties are mounting on the Republican side, mainly because they didn’t figure on The Woman forming a coalition with the Democrats and Independents. Do provide support for the Woman’s side in this War, we might have to dust off the old Southeast Asia Domino Theory that was employed to sell the Vietnam War.  If we allow women’s rights to fall, it will be followed by the fall of everyone’s rights to government-funded medical care, Social Security, unemployment benefits, education, environmental regulation, fraud protection, voter protection, civil rights protection—a whole bunch of protections.

Women’s rights is the beach head the Republicans have chosen to land on and attempt to secure. It’s a good thing they always get their history wrong. They’re not the Allied Forces, and women are not the Third Reich. If anything, it’s the other way around.

“Army Strong”

The Army sergeant who slaughtered 16 Afghan villagers, including women and children, will be standing accused alone at the defendant’s table. But there should be another defendant sitting next to him: the US Army.

This is a married man with two children ages 3 and 4.  At first there were reported marital problems but now his attorney says those reports are false.  Still, this was his 4th tour of duty, having spent 3 in Iraq.  So, the Army subjects him to the death and insanity that was the Iraq War and they reward him by assigning him to a godforsaken, desolate Afghan outpost supporting special ops teams like the Army Green Berets and the Navy SEALs. The day before he went on his rampage a buddy of his had his leg blown off by a roadside bomb the day before.

This sergeant is 38 years old and has served 11 years in the Army. No one forced him to re-up when he finished his first enlistment period but no one forced the Army to keep sending him again and again into harm’s way, a family man with two young kids. He’s been in Afghanistan since last December.  He suffered a concussion from a roadside bomb explosion and lost part of a foot due to another battle injury. Yet the Army claims that after exhaustive psychological and physical testing they gave him the OK to return to active duty. They even sent him through sniper school for good measure.

It’s alleged that he went on a drinking binge, something snapped, and he took his rifle, walked off base, and shot up two villages, and then calmly walked back onto base and gave himself up. He alleges the Army broke its promise to him that he would not be re-deployed after his 3rd Iraq tour of duty.

I have to think that with his marriage possibly breaking up, he was thinking that stuck there in an Afghan outpost with “friendly” Afghans shooting Americans, and the Taliban shooting Americans, his chances of making it home alive were growing less and less. He might have been thinking about his missing foot, and the Bronze Star that the Army denied him. And sitting in his quarters there, pulling on whatever he might have been drinking, he simply thought, “Fuck it. Fuck this shit and if I’m about to lose everything, I’m going to make sure it’s me who does it and there’s no going back.” So he picks up his rifle and walks off base.

This is what the Army is doing to today’s enlisted soldier. With a volunteer army, they are restricted to getting what walks in the door, which is usually the poor kids without a future. Many of these kids have lower expectations from life because some of them weren’t exactly the sharpest pencils in school and all of them can’t find a job in civilian life. The military is their only shot at a semblance of some type of life. But I would bet the recruiter never tells them that when they sign up for 6 years, it’s no longer one tour of duty in a foreign undeclared war zone. It’s being forced back again and again and again until you’ve seen so many buddies blown up or blowing their own heads off, they wonder when they’ll be next. They’re fully aware of buddies who after being shipped back home can’t make it in civilian life and the VA offers no help to them at all. So it’s a choice between dying in combat or dying inside back home. Either way, there’s no hope.

And that has to be what the sergeant was feeling: there’s no hope. In Vietnam, no matter how bad things got in that jungle, every soldier knew it was a one-time gig unless they chose to go back for another round. In Iraq and Afghanistan, soldiers are stuck on a merry-go-round they can’t get off because the only brass ring that gets you sent home is either inside a body bag or grasped inside the hand of the arm that was blown off by a roadside bomb.

Nothing will excuse the horror and death the sergeant rained down on the 16 people and their families in those two villages. But to ease his pain, he committed a crime so horrendous with consequences so immense and possibly final, that he can shut down numb himself to all he has lost, and all events about to befall him.

And the Army officially states this was the act of a lone soldier who was under extreme stress and alcohol may have played a role as well. After forcing a young man to spend years away from his wife, children, and home for years because the Army needs live bodies in Iraq and Afghanistan, the Army feels it has no culpability in the genesis of this massacre. I’m sure the Navy, who has deployed sailors to a landlocked country, feels the same way.

The US Army’s current ad slogan is “Army Strong”. US Marines were ordered to disarm themselves before attending a meeting with Defense Secretary Leon Panetta at Camp Leatherneck in Afghanistan. If the Marines, the toughest sons of bitches there are in the regular military can’t be trusted to carry weapons in the presence of their boss, how strong is today’s Army really?

Contract With America – 2012 Style

It came upon a morning clear. I just had to put all the clues together.

First, it was Attorney General Eric Holder claiming there’s a Constitutional difference between due process and judicial process as a “legal” justification for President Obama’s authority to order the imprisonment or the assassination of anyone anywhere in the world at any time. (Mr. Holder? The ghost of Thomas Jefferson would like to have a word with you.)

Next, Obama signs H.R. 347, otherwise known as the Federal Restricted Buildings and Grounds Improvement Act which is makes it virtually impossible for undesirables to get close to the White House. Sprinkle in the USA PATRIOT and other assorted Acts and it becomes obvious: Obama is not trying to protect the American people from terrorist attacks. He’s trying to protect himself from going out like John F. Kennedy. Anyone anywhere who might be a potential assassin or part of a cabal is taken out first. No one with a dissenting opinion gets near the White House. To be honest, it’s perfectly understandable the President would feel this way. Obama has been the target of the worst virulent and vitriolic racial attacks and has received more death threats than any President before him, solely because there have been no black Presidents before him.

But the problem here is the Presidential paranoia showing behind that easy grin. Richard M. Nixon may have been the most paranoid President in history but he loved and respected the Constitution too much to compromise it when it came to civil rights.

One would think that Barack Obama, the Constitutional scholar, would feel the same way. But instead he’s Groucho Marx playing out the famous contract scene from the Marx Brothers “A Night At The Opera” but he’s playing it without brother Chico.

To the Obama administration, any clause in the contract (Constitution) or its amendments that guarantees American citizens certain rights while exposing Obama to potential danger, well, “she’s no good, boss.”

Obama is taking the parts of the Constitution with selected Amendments and tearing off the parts he doesn’t like until he’s left holding a narrow scrap of paper in his hands.

But we got a Constitution—no matter how small it is. But not only doesn’t it have a Sanity Clause, it barely has any amendments left.