Saturday, August 21, 2004

New Addition to the Family

I'm going to be getting a Chihuahua puppy here in the next few weeks. The grandmother-in-law of a co-worker breeds Chihuahuas. So, when the puppy is old enough to be taken from mama, he'll be coming to his new home. Dale is not real happy with the situation, but, he wants me to be happy (and he knows better than to say I can't have it - I'll be knocking on the door of the Humane Society early the next morning). He's a big guy, and because of his physical problems is sometimes not too steady on his feet, so I do understand his concerns. He also thinks that Chihuahuas are yippy, yappy dogs. They can be, but I have learned enough about dogs to know that any dog, no matter the size, can be "vocal" if they are not properly trained and socialized. Then, there are the cats. Dolly and Oliver Will. Not. Be. Happy. with. this. At. All.

So, my dilemma is this: what to name the puppy? I'd thought of Charlie (before the hurricane came through), Tucker (still a favorite, but I can guess what Dale will make of that), and George and Dubya. Can you, my dear and faithful readers, come up with an idea for a name? I want a human sounding name (to go with Dolly and Oliver), so Spot and Fido are out. I also want a strong sounding name. I thought of George and Dubya for obvious reasons, and George was my Grandfather's name, so it holds special meaning for me. I thought about Billy, short for William which was the middle name of my other grandfather.

Help me out! Name the puppy!
Update: I've made a decision. The pooch's name will be Wyatt. I was watching Charmed the other evening and bingo! it hit me. I like the name Wyatt. And, besides that I've also liked the old West gunslinger turned marshall, Wyatt Earp. Wyatt also means "little warrior" in old French. It fits a Chihuahua very nicely. Wyatt it shall be.
Another Site Change

You will notice that I've added a Swift Boat Vets section to my sidebar. It links to the SBV's site and to Amazon. I am considering adding Amazon links to other books relating to the election. Watch this site!
Update! I've not only added Unfit for Command, but several other books by and about Senator Kerry and President Bush. I did not include images because I didn't want to use any more space than necessary. If I find more books (or items) I feel are pertinent, I will add those.

And, in order to make full disclosure, I am an Amazon associate, so I will make a few pennies with every book purchase. That is not why I added the feature, in fact, I started to add links until I remembered I was an associate. If I make a few pennies, life is good. If not, it's not costing me anything and I will feel that I've performed a public service by making these books available.

Who's telling the truth? I think the truth lies somewhere in the middle. This would probably not be an issue had Senator Kerry not made his service in Vietnam the core of his bid for the Presidency. Unfortunately, I can't see that his Senate service has anything to be especially proud of.

So, that being said, he had to use his Vietnam service as the central point of his campaign. In doing so, he left himself open to anyone who wanted to dispute his version of his service. I wasn't there, so I can't say which version is the truth and which is full of lies. I don't know.

Here are a couple of points to ponder:

1. Served with, or didn't serve with. In my 20 plus years of para-military experience (I'm in law enforcement), I've learned that you don't have to work hip-to-hip with a person to serve with them. We have 2 day shift and 2 night shifts. The two day shifts see each other only when someone is working overtime on the opposite shift or transfers between shifts. Same for night shift. Now, not working with each other, the deputies still get to know the other shift because they may: be friends, hear supervisors talk (at muster and in general conversation), ask questions about what the other shift did in a situation, inmate talk (taken with a grain of salt, but over time you know what to listen to from inmates), have common friends, and most importantly, documentation. We have tons of documentation, from log books, to incident reports, to daily activity reports, and so on. Does Deputy A who is on Day shift 1 work with Deputy B who is on Night shift 2? I've got to split hairs here, served together yes, worked together no.

2. Wasn't in the same boat but saw or couldn't see what happened. I'm not sure this is an appropriate analogy, but how about this: when the WTC tragedy occurred, there were thousands of people involved. Did each person see exactly what everyone else saw? Did someone on the street see the same thing as a person inside the building saw? No, they didn't "serve" together, or even "work" together, but they did experience the same thing, but from different viewpoints. Even co-workers in the same office, one sitting at a desk and the other looking out the window. They worked together, served together, were in the same office, and experienced the same event but saw different things. A secretary, taking dictation from her boss who is seated with his or her back to the window, had a different view of American Flight 11 striking the North Tower than her boss who never saw it coming. Or this: have you ever witnessed an accident then discussed it with someone in your own vehicle? Chances are you saw different things.

What I'm getting at is that because of your view and your involvement in a situation, you may see something that can't be seen by someone else. For example: while Kerry was pulling Rasmann out of the water, they were both focused on getting Rassman out of the water and couldn't have seen everything going on around them. Did they lie about getting Rassman out of the water? The facts say no. Rassman went into the water and they both say Kerry got him out.

3. Are the Republicans behind the Swift Vets? Both say no. According to this article, Bob Perry made a $200,000 donation to the Swift Vets. Perry has ties to the Republican party as do many of the Swifties. Correct me if I'm wrong, but don't people make donations to political parties they belong to, and to causes they believe in? George Soros and (among others) have been behind Senator Kerry and have made numerous donations to his campaign, either directly or in ads on his behalf. Where is the difference?

Because I am the sort of person I am, I believe the best in everyone until I know differently. I will say straight out, I don't like Kerry. I haven't since before he began to win the primaries. I would say the same thing if the Swifties had never come into the fray. Nothing the Senator has done since he threw his hat into the Presidential ring has changed my opinion. Well, there was the photo op in the bunny suit. I still smile when I see it. I still can't figure out what his campaign stategy is except that he would do the same thing as President Bush, but differently.

The DNC lawyers have threatened TV stations with legal action if they show the Swift Vet ads. They are now reported to have suggested that the publisher of the Swift Vets book, Unfit for Command, remove the book from publication. I've also heard that letters have been written to book stores threatening legal action if they stock the book. I cannot verify that, so please don't quote me on that. I am not going to discuss the freedom of speech issuea because it isn't petinent and I've already discussed why it's not pertinent in a previous post.

Do the Swift Vets have the right to say what they believe to be the truth? Absolutely. Senator Kerry has based his entire campaign on his Vietnam service. The other Swift Vets were there. They have the right to dispute his version. Do they have the right to lie about it? No, not as far as I am concerned. If they are going to go public, they have a responsibility to tell the truth, just has Senator Kerry has a responsibility to tell the truth.

Senator Kerry has said "Bring it on" when referring to the charges made against him by the Swifties. Well, it's coming on. Mister Kerry, if you can prove that the Swifties are lying, you'll have my respect.

hmmm....I seem to remember someone else saying "Bring it on."
Comments - Part 2

When I make a mistake, I try to admit it, rectify it, and then go on. Well, I made a mistake. In doing a bit of research, I found that gives a time line of events of September 11 (a very good resource for September 11 news). I found that President Bush was told of the first plane (American Airlines Flight 11) striking the North Tower before he went in to meet with the children. The first plane struck at 8:46 am. The second plane (United Flight 175) struck the South Tower at 9:03 am. Andy Card whispered in his ear at 9:04 am. At 9:30 am he went before the cameras. A grand total of 44 minutes from the first strike to his first statement before the cameras.

Word of the tragedy first came to President Bush in the hallway of a school in Sarasota, Fla., moments after the first plane hit New York's World Trade Center. He went to a private room, where he spoke by phone with National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice; it appeared then that the matter could be just a terrible accident.
Then, at 9:04 a.m., while Bush met with second-graders, staff chief Andrew H. Card Jr. whispered in his ear that a second plane had struck. Bush's sunny countenance went grim. After Card's whisper, Bush looked distracted and somber but continued to listen to the second-graders read and soon was smiling again. He joked that they read so well, they must be sixth-graders.
After huddling with advisers, Bush entered the school's media center for what was to have been an education speech. He looked stunned, but by the time he reached the podium, he was composed and at 9:30 a.m. delivered the chilling news of "an apparent terrorist attack on our country."
I either didn't know or forgot the order of events (most likely forgot). I'm now confused as to which seven minutes we're talking about. Was it seven minutes between hearing of the two Tower strikes. Or is it seven minutes after he knew of the second strike? It was probably the second since it's been said that he should have brushed the kids off to take care of presidential business. But, you know what? I really don't care. I still say we (meaning anyone and everyone up to and including the President) didn't know what was going on. Information had to be gathered before he could make any decisions. How could he make any decision at all without knowing what he needed to decide? Sure, he could have told the kids "I'm sorry. I have Presidential business that needs to be attended to" and left. He still couldn't have gotten information any sooner than he did. Why not give those kids and staff a few more minutes of his attention? Those kids will remember for years to come that he put aside seven minutes to listen to them read. What is seven minutes in the course of the world? What could he have done in those seven minutes that wasn't being done? I'm sure that Andy Card assured him, when telling him about the second strike, that everyone (and I do mean everyone who had any way whatsoever of finding out anything) was trying to find out what happened. While he was listening to the kids read, someone apparently linked the attack to terrorists. How? I don't know who or how, but someone connected the dots. Now is the time I expect President Bush to take action.
I expect leaders to get information in a very short period of time. While Bush listened to the kids read (and wouldn't you have loved to have been one of those kids when you were that age? It would have been the event of my lifetime to have the POTUS listen to me read), the FBI, the CIA, National Security, the Secret Service and every other alphabet agency I'm not thinking about was trying to find out what happened so they would know who and what to protect and how to do it. Orders did not have to be given by the President, it was already being done. I would be very concerned about the security of this country if it was left up to the President to issue orders so basic as to find out what happened, what was happening, was going to happen, who was behind it and what to expect.
I expect leaders to have people around them who can make decisions on their own and to be able to think about what my boss (in this case the POTUS) would want and need to know. I expect leaders to make decisions based on the information they have at the time. I expect leaders to take the information they are given and sort through the information and make the best decisions they can based on that information. He knew there were two strikes on the WTC. And that's about all any of us knew at that time. I even knew that much. Based on what I know of chain-of-command (and I've had more than 20 years experience with CoC), when he was told of the first strike, he gave orders to find out what happened, whether it was an unfortunate accident, or if not, find out what was behind it. When he was huddled in the hallway before going on camera, more orders were given to (these would be my words) find what the hell was happening and who was behind it. Anyone on his staff who didn't come up with some answers before he went on camera would be looking for another job very quickly. That's what they are there for and what they are paid to do. Again, this is based on 20 plus years of experience.
Within 30 minutes of being informed of the second strike President Bush was before the cameras telling us that it was "an apparent terrorist attack on our country." Then, he left for Air Force One. The rest, as they say, is history.

Thursday, August 19, 2004


I found the following comment on my Wicktory Wednesday post. His comments are in italics, mine aren't. I already answered in Comments, but thought I would expand a bit.

mattcable2506 wrote:

Just 'cause I'm curious, how do conservatives justify Bush's seven-minute hesitation in the classroom on Sept 11, 2001?

As I stated, I can only speak for myself. I've posted previously on the seven-minutes, and again in comments. I don't consider myself to be conservative, although I am more conservative than I am liberal. I don't consider that seven minutes to be anything but fact gathering time by staffers. No one knew what was happening, nor did we know a second attack would be coming.

When I was in the Navy back in 1998, my ship was traveling between Italy and Malta and the lights suddenly went out. We immediately started going to General Quarters and would have started opening up repair lockers, opening up ammunition storage, putting on uniforms, etc. The lights came back on before we could get very far.

Thank you for your service. I honestly do appreciate the time you gave to your country. Your actions as you describe sound reasonable to me under the circumstances you were in. When the lights go out in my house (a poor analogy perhaps, but one I can relate to), I start looking for the reason. Did we blow a circuit? Are the lights in the neighborhood out? Do I hear sirens? What's the weather like? What's going on? Where's the flashlight?

Why did we react that way? Because we didn't know what was going on! When there is any doubt whatsoever, a real leader would have headed for a command post, a place where he could have received reports and from where he could have issued orders. Any base or ship would have sufficed, Air Force One was within driving distance. Once he'd got to Air Force One, where would he have had it fly to? Who cares? What matters is, he should have gotten there.

I believe that a "real leader" can wait a few minutes to find out the facts. Had he been told there were multiple attacks in different areas, I might question the wait myself. But, when President Bush was told of the Trade Center "incident", no one knew there would be a second attack. It didn't happen until after the seven minute interval. At that point, we didn't know it was anything but a terrible, unbelievable accident. I believe that a "real leader" gathers as many facts as possible before taking action. After speaking to the press, he did go to Air Force One where he could get reports and where orders could be issued. As we now know, nothing could have been done in that seven minutes that would have saved the second tower. Why go off on a tangent with as few facts as he had at the time? I believe he acted reasonably and intelligently at the time.
One question: on your ship, I'm sure there was a captain. Did he (or she) start looking for the problem, or did he rely on other people to give him information? I'm reasonably certain that the captain, if not already on the bridge, started in that direction (heading to the command post) expecting information to be waiting for him when he got there. Also knowing that the personnel on the ship would be going about their duties as the situation demanded. President Bush could go on reading to the children knowing that his staff was gathering information and that he would be able to go on camera with all the knowledge and information that was available to him at that time.

How do conservatives justify his lack of action?

Again, I can speak only for myself. I don't see a "lack of action." I don't see where he needed to do anything but what he did at the time. Since we are talking about the famous "seven minutes", I won't speak to the action that was taken later.

Matt, I doubt that I can say anything that will make you believe anything but that Bush is anything but a "real leader." We apparently have different ideas of what constitutes a "real leader."
New Sidebar Items

I've added two things to the sidebar this evening. The first, a weather magnet from the Weather Channel is mostly for my own information. When I want to see what the temperature is (summer: hot and humid, winter: cooler and humid) without actually sticking my nose out the door. Hey, maybe I can't for some reason! But then you have the opportunity in January, when you are up to your armpits in snow to see that the temperature here in sunny Florida is a balmy 76 degrees

The other is a permanent area for Hurricane Relief links. I'll add more as I find them. The area may later be renamed Disaster Relief because not all relief is needed due to hurricanes. There are other natural, and un-natural, disasters, you know. But since hurricane relief is at the top of everyone's mind right now, especially here in Florida, it will stay Hurricane Relief for the time being.
If you know of another link that should be added, feel free to let me know.

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Wictory Wednesday!

I'm pleading, begging, and groveling, asking that you, my favorite reader, volunteer your time and or donate your money to the Bush 2004 campaign. You've never seen me write that he is the best president ever. I don't agree with everything he's done, but he's head-and-shoulders (knees and toes...oh, sorry) over Kerry.

There are only two more weeks to make your donation. After the RNC, you will not be able to make legal contributions. Your time as a volunteer is always appreciated.

And please, talk to your friends and relatives to make sure they understand just how important this election is. Their vote is every bit as important as your money and time.
If you have a blog, you can still join Blogs for Bush here.
Fact Check

Found this site via The Patriette:

From their mission statement:

We are a nonpartisan, nonprofit, "consumer advocate" for voters that aims to reduce the level of deception and confusion in U.S. politics. We monitor the factual accuracy of what is said by major U.S. political players in the form of TV ads, debates, speeches, interviews, and news releases. Our goal is to apply the best practices of both journalism and scholarship, and to increase public knowledge and understanding.

The Annenberg Political Fact Check is a project of the Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania. The APPC was established by publisher and philanthropist Walter Annenberg in 1994 to create a community of scholars within the University of Pennsylvania that would address public policy issues at the local, state, and federal levels.

The APPC accepts NO funding from business corporations, labor unions, political parties, lobbying organizations or individuals. It is funded primarily by an endowment from the Annenberg Foundation.

I especially like the last statement.

Sunday, August 15, 2004

Blogs for Bush

Now over 800 strong! Yee-Haw!

Kerry-Edwards - does not have a blogroll anymore, but when last checked - 55

Howard Dean, once dubbed the Internet candidate, had about 90

The support for Bush is there, now isn't the time to sit back. We need to make ourselves known even more than ever before. Write letters to the editors, talk to friends and relatives, and most importantly, vote on November 2nd.

Site Changes

You might notice I've moved things around, added some and removed others. More changes will be coming over the next few months, so I hope you'll come back now and again to check out the changes. And, of course, to see what gems I've written, well, at least linked to.
Kerry Is A Saint

Lifted....err...borrowed from Grouchy Old Cripple in Atlanta

Kerry's campaign manager visited the Cardinal and said to him, "We've been getting a lot of bad publicity among Catholics because of Kerry's position on abortion and the like. We'd gladly make a contribution to the church of $100,000 if during your sermon you'd say John Kerry is a saint."

The Cardinal thinks it over for a moment and agrees to do it.

Kerry and his entourage arrives at the National Cathedral.

The press is in full force.

As anticipated the Mass progresses.

The Cardinal begins his homily: "John Kerry is a petty, self absorbed hypocrite and a nit-wit. John Kerry is a liar, a cheat, and a thief. John Kerry is the worst example of a Catholic I've ever personally witnessed. But, compared to Ted Kennedy, John Kerry is a saint."
Florida Bloggers

I've created a links list in my sidebar for bloggers in Florida. It's something I've wanted to do, and Charley spurred me into action. I thought it might be a good idea to have a list link so that we can check in on each other during storms and such. It won't hurt site traffic either .

I know there are many more Florida bloggers out there that I haven't found yet. If I haven't already linked and you are a Florida blogger who would like to be included, just let me know. If you don't want to be linked, also let me know and I'll remove you.
If I've stepped on toes by linking without permission, I apologize.
Just How Much Damage Did Charley Cause??

Don't know whether anyone else noticed, but one of the captions Fox had under footage of Charley read: "Bush declared disaster area in Florida"

Gee, I thought the devestation was wider than just one bush.