A Former Sgt in the US Marines, US Army and Australian Federal Police - With an Attitude Problem - Looking at the Shits & Giggles of life from a Quasi-Conservative Point of View * * *
WARNING! STRONG LANGUAGE FOLLOWS! * * *
31 December, 2006
President Gerald Ford
During his short, accidental presidency, Ford did several good things - the retrieval of the Mayaquez from the Cambodians and by the end of his term there were no Americans fighting anywhere overseas.
What people forget, though, is that it was Nixon who took all of our forces out of Viet Nam except for those at the U.S. Embassy. In September 1969, Nixon started by pulling out the entire 3rd Marine Division.
While President Ford was undoubtedly a good man, there are three things that will always define his presidency to me - especially since I was still in the military during his term.
The first was the sight of helicopters trying to airlift people from the roof of the Embassy at Saigon.
The second, which truly pissed off just about everyone who wore a uniform, was his amnesty to the draft evaders. It was Jimmah Carter who issued the blanket pardon to them.
The third thing was when he opened up the three Military Academies to women. The average troop was basically ambivalent about his destruction of tradition, but the officer corps of every branch were up in arms.
So yes, he was a good man who settled the country after the Watergate scandal and tried to do many good things - even though he had to work with a Democratic Congress, but it's the bad things he did (in my opinion) that will always define his Presidency to me.
As an afterthought - can anyone tell if those are M-1's or M-14's the funeral guards have been carrying? They look like my favorite old M-14, but with my eyes I can't quite make it out.
Saddam is finally dead - the only thing that disappointed me was that he didn't cry like a little girl and fight his way to the gallows.
Now they have to bury him within 24 hours - but where? If they don't just dump his body in the Persian Gulf, will they take him to Tikrit?
In my humble opinion, they should bury him in the dead of night somewhere in the desert in an unmarked grave. Otherwise the Sunnis, including Al Qaeda and the Bathists (don't forget - Syria is a Bathist government) will most likely turn his grave into some kind of martyr's shrine, and that's about the last thing they need.
Also, while it's too early to tell, is Al Anbar Province, the main home of Sunnis in Iraq, going to go up in flames?
Well, the annual Hajj is on, with millions of pilgrims heading to Mecca for the traditional ceremonies. In a couple of days there will be the highlight of it all, when they throw their shoes at the columns which represent the devil.
Each year, hundreds are killed during this - mostly trampled to death. I wonder if they can set a new record - the more they kill, the fewer terrorists there'll be.
Yes, I know - there are many Muslims who just want to live their lives and get along. But by their very silence, they support the terrorists, so I'll be watching the closing ceremonies of the Hajj with interest, cheering for them to get into the Guiness Book of Records for the number of people killed in a religious rite.
I decided not to post yesterday, spending the day instead with my family.
One thing - Jimmy Buffett turned 58 yesterday. One of those poor folks who have their birthday and Christmas coincide, which can cut down on presents!
Secondly, while I know that many of you were holding the troops overseas in your thoughts, there's others worthy of your thoughts and prayers. From Fort Lewis near Tacoma to the Naval base at Key West, and from West Point to San Diego, there are many thousands of troops who spent the Holidy on base while their comrades got leave.
Keep all of our troops in your thoughts - no matter where they are or what their duties consist of. They have all voluntarily given of themselves to protect us.
Yeah, I know - it's been a long time since I've done one of these. Mark it up to apathy.
So Grand Wizard David Duke was in Iran for the symposium on whether or not the holocaust ever took place. Yep, he'd be a real expert on that one. Can someone please explain to my why he or Ramsay Clark should ever be allowed back in this country?
I saw earlier this week where a woman was arrested for the abuse of her 22 year old mentally retarded daughter. When the arrest took place, the daughter weighed 43 pounds. Shit - her bones should weigh that much. It's a shame the mother was only charged with abuse and not attempted murder. If anyone is deserving of public hanging, she'd have to be the one.
And of course, the basketball season wouldn't be complete without an all-in brawl that spilled into the stands, endangering the fans. The majority of those involved got all of a one game suspension. Yeah - that'll teach them!
And John Kerry has decided to visit the troops in Iraq. That should be one of the high points of his career after his "joke" about how if you don't study hard that's where you'll end up. I bet the troops really appreciated that and can't wait to have a chat with this dickwad.
Hamas fighters are being killed. Fatah murderers are being killed. And for once the Israelis aren't involved - they're doing it to themselves. Since they're still more than enough of both factions left, it's obvious they're just not trying hard enough.
Finally, you know how the word "Crusade" sends Muslim panties in a wad? Maybe they forgot that in the first Crusade, when Jerusalem fell, there were as many Christians and Jews killed as Muslims - and just who was it that won the Crusades? I seem to remember the name Saladin.
And for those who aren't aware of this little fact, when Mohammad and his initial group of followers headed north to "spread" Islam, they were more interested in real estate than converts. The "convert or die" method was the norm until the Muslims had already moved north thru Syria, headed west thru Egypt and were halfway across Africa before they actively recruited converts.
Yesterday, Boy Wonder hopped on his Fatboy - recently updated with a sissy bar and West Coast Chopper open pipes - and went on an organized run from the American Legion hall here in Winston Salem to the Veterans Hospital in Salisbury, NC. They were taking packages of toiletries, etc, for those hospitalized there.
Going through the wards meeting the vets and handing out the goodies left a few tears on both sides. Afterwards, they ran the bikes all around the complex, gunning the engines as they went so everyone would know that they came and that they cared about them.
He said he wouldn't have missed it for anything and will make that a yearly ride. He also found out that there is a local chapter of Sons of American Legion Motorcycle Club which he plans on joining.
Back in 1971, when I attended Marine Security Guard School, it was at Henderson Hall. I don't even know if that place exists anymore, but it was bounded by Fort Myer, Arlington Cemetery and the Navy Annex. Now I understand the school is at Quantico. One part of the training was that we had to agree to remain single throughout our tour.
Thirty three years (and a day or two) ago, my tour ended, and my Australian bride - She Who Must Be Obeyed - and I were married in Canberra, Australia.
Since then, we've been all over the U.S., Australia and were even in Germany long enough for Boy Wonder to have been born there.
We have been in Winston Salem for about the longest we've been in one place - and with a 31-year old son and a daughter who turned 30 yesterday, along with our three precious grand daughters - I love her as much now as ever and wouldn't change a thing - except maybe my health!
Even though I'm now a Carolinian, I was born and raised a Chicago boy and Da Bears will always be my first team. By beating the Vikings today, they locked up the NFC North Division title, but unless they make a change their season will come to a crashing halt in the playoffs.
For reasons that are unfathomable to everyone outside the Bears organization, they insist on playing Rex Grossman at quarterback. Since joining the Bears, Grossman has been injured either in the preseason or the first game of the regular season, so this is his first full season since he left college. And he's playing like it - in the last 5 weeks or so he's thrown about as many interceptions as completions and has fumbled the ball away several times as well.
Take today's game - the Special Teams returned a punt for a touchdown; the defense returned an interception for a touchdown and also scored a Safety. That's 16 points in a 23 - 13 win.
The Bears may have one of the best Defenses in the NFL and their Special Teams return men can match up with anyone, but unless they start playing a Pro quarterback they'll have no chance of making it through the playoffs.
Bear fans - I wouldn't be booking those Miami hotel rooms just yet.