October 27, 2007

So This Afternoon…

…I spent four hours at a pro-troops demonstration at Federal Plaza, which was the final destination and gathering place of an anti-war march conducted by the usual crowd of fake Americans.

We right thinkers were in the profound minority (I’m not sure how many of us showed up, but I think fifty to sixty would be a reasonable ball park figure), whereas the marchers, when they arrived, numbered somewhere in the mid to upper hundreds, maybe a thousand and change (again, my own estimate — I’ve never been all that good at estimating the volume of a huge crowd of people). Of course, had it not been for an emailed announcement from Merrilee Carlson at Families United, I never would have known about it at all. It would seem that the media’s main interest was the port side of the equation.

As always, it was a fun event, meeting other patriotic Americans in a city brimming over with liberals, talking, joking and laughing at the wingnuts. There was also a gay guy in one of the conversation groups I was in who flat out said that the liberals across the street were distressingly misguided, and there were a couple of “obvious” lesbians on our side of the street, one mega-butch, which demonstrated that not all {a little PC here} alternative lifestyle folks are as naive as their mainstream.

The starboard side of the rally was organized by Airborne Ranger (82nd) mom Beverly Perlson, a really nice lady who is understandably proud of her son’s service to his country.

The lefteez had a stage set up, complete with this horrible live “band” fronted by some guy who thought he was a cross between Edwin Star and the lead singer of AC/DC circa Highway To Hell. He led off with “War-huh!-What is it good for?…” and from his first ultra-loud, terrifying gutteral assault, I kept on waiting for his tonsils to come flying out of his mouth. Some really funny guys with bull horns on our side of the street harangued the hell out of him and had the rest of us laughing our asses off.

I met a couple of Republicans who are running for the U.S. Senate, Andy Martin and Michael John Psak (Martin struck me as pure lawyer/politician — it was a Saturday at a demonstration and he was the only entity in sight wearing a suit and tie — while Psak, an MBA who drives a truck for a living, seemed more in touch with the common man than did his same party competitor — I’ll have to examine their websites before I form any further conclusions on either) and the whip from Minutemen Midwest, Ev Evertsen, great guy… I was majorly gratified to learn that like me, his organization are staunch supporters of Presidential candidate and Republican House member Tom Tancredo.

And along came the marchers, bearing the usual “Impeach Bush” (and Cheney on several), “Bring The Troops Home Now”, “Bush Lied, People Died”, “Send The Twins To Iraq”, etc, signs, along with a number of signs laced with the profanity we can always expect to see at any liberal demonstration (no doubt “for the children”). One sign said, “Bush Eats Babies”. Another, sported by a spacey looking young woman with multicolored hair, a code-pinker I believe, held up a sign that said, “Living Is Easy With Eyes Closed” (a line from the Beatles song Strawberry Fields Forever), and that one amused me as I thought that she had plagiarized the Magical Mystery Tour track in an autobiographical context.

Once all the marchers were settled in, one of their mass activities was the singing of We Shall Not Be Moved. I left at about 5:00 pm as there was some stuff that needed to get done, and can report, as surprising as it may seem, that Kumbaya had not yet been sung.

There was a dude in an Army uniform among the anti-war folks proclaiming “I am the troops!”, and he was regalled by our side with shouts of “Traitor!” until an older cop on a Segway singled out one among many and snarled that he was inciting violence, “…One more word and you’re coming with me!” The other officers in the immediate vicinity shrugged and indicated via rolled eyes and so forth that they had no idea where he was coming from. There were, naturally, scores of uniformed and a few plainclothes CPD, Cook County Sheriff’s Dept police and also quite a few firemen, I would guess because firefighters are superb first responders. All of them, except the dude on the Segway, seemed to be enjoying the event immensely.

For our part, except for maybe a handful of signs featuring civilized vocabulary, everybody waved American flags.

I heard a good joke there:

A U.S. Marine boards a commercial airplane and sits down in the aisle seat beside two Arabs. He removes his shoes so as to be more comfortable. After the seat belt sign goes off, the Arab in the middle seat says, “I’m going for a Coke.”

The Marine says, “Here, let me get it for you.”

After he leaves, the Arab picks up one of his shoes and spits in it. The Marine returns with the Coke and the Arab in the window seat says, “I, too, wish to get a Coke.”

“Let me get it for you.” The Marine goes off to get him a Coke. This Arab picks up the Marine’s other shoe and spits in it.

The Marine delivers the Coke and retakes his seat.

Later, as the plane is landing, the Marine puts his shoes on and frowns.

He turns to the Arabs and complains, “As fellow human beings, we should really try to understand each other and get along. All this spitting in shoes and pissing in Cokes gets us nowhere.”

by @ 10:27 pm. Filed under Support The Troops

October 24, 2007

One For Ukrainians

As I have mentioned before at one place and another, I grew up in a Jewish family that loved ethnic jokes, particularly those aimed at ourselves, and we used to share them at gatherings around my grandparents’ dinner table. My extraction on that, the maternal side of my family, is Ukrainian and Polish. Yep, Polish, so my grandmother was the honored recipient of plethoras of extra jokes.

However, Ukrainian jokes were hard to come by (sparing my grandfather, LOL) in fact I don’t recall ever hearing or reading any, at least until now, with this one emailed to me this morning by my treasured Aunt Brenda, conservative-Democrat-at-large:

A Ukrainian walked into a bank in New York City and asked for the loan officer. He told the loan officer that he was going to Kiev on business for two weeks and needed to borrow $5,000 and that he was not a depositor of the bank.

The bank officer told him that the bank would need some form of security for the loan, so the Ukrainian handed over the keys to a new Ferrari. The car was parked on the street in front of the bank. The Ukrainian produced the title and everything checked out. The loan officer agreed to hold the car as collateral for the loan and apologized for having to charge 12% interest.

Later, the bank’s president and its officers all enjoyed a good laugh at the Ukrainian for using a $250,000 Ferrari as collateral for a $5,000 loan. An employee of the bank then drove the Ferrari into the bank’s underground garage and parked it.

Two weeks later, the Ukrainian returned, repaid the $5,000 and the interest of $23.07.

The loan officer said, “Sir, we are very happy to have had your business, and this transaction has worked out very nicely, but we are a little puzzled. While you were away, we checked you out and found that you are a multimillionaire. What puzzles us is, why would you bother to borrow $5,000?”

The Ukrainian replied: “Where else in New York City can I park my car for two weeks for only $23.07 and expect it to be there when I return?”

Ah, the Ukrainians… See! Kielbasa & Vodka is good for the brain.

by @ 8:29 am. Filed under Humor

October 22, 2007

Mark Steyn…

…defines, in this column, the true source of the “War On Children”.

Put as succinctly as this, any logic blessed American voter reading the column should stop and ponder:

1. Why aren’t the Democrats in Congress thinking about the future their social programs will leave to “the children”, who will grow up to be tax-paying adults? Why do they attempt to emulate failed European policies while ignoring the negative results of same?

Could it be that they’re only concerned with the politics of the now rather than the realities of the future?

2. Assuming they are concerned about the future of our country and about “the children”, is this simply a case of the Democrats being incapable of assessing the down-the-road ramifications of policies they set today?

Are political leaders who lack even an iota of perspicacity qualified to lead the country?

The United States of America is a perpetually ongoing concept, yet the Democrats treat it as though it is a political Busy Box whose attention span needs only to extend from one Election Day to the next.

If the Democrats feel the need to invoke “the children”, they need look no further for invokees than those occupying seats to the left of the aisle.

October 21, 2007

If I Needed Any Concrete Evidence…

…that I have somewhere along the line become a stone Internet (© Algore) addict, the last half week supplied all the proof I need.

I lit up Mr. Inspiron at Zero Dark Hundred Hours on Thursday to find a blue screen informing me that I couldn’t come in, because there was something-or-other afoot that would damage my computer if I did.

“Bummer,” I thought.

I called Dell Tech Support, went through the usual Pomp & Circumstance you go through before you find yourself in touch with a human being in the proper department, and was dumbfounded when I discovered that the homosapien in question was, while obviously elsewhere in the world (it’s hard to say whether she was a Latina or a Bangalorian, and I’ve always been really good with accents, but I think that was because her English, diction and vocabulary both, was nothing short of excellent), was eminently understandable, profoundly knowledgeable and had a real ease about her, the kind that comes, part and parcel, with experience. Our entire exchange was more a conversation, including some mutually enjoyed humorous asides, than it was a report/response exchange.

Her diagnosis was that I needed to reinstall Windows XP Professional, using the back-up CD they should have sent me with my notebook. She also told me that when I’d purchased the computer, Dell hadn’t been including the XP disc among the others in the box, so she had to overnight it to me. She made the soonest appointment available (for she or someone from her unit to call me and walk me through the reinstall, once I had the CD), which was for Saturday Afternoon.

Aaargh!!!! I was contemplating up to 2 1/2 days without being able to get online from a PJ-friendly environment! I repeat, Aaargh!

I must confess to a certain degree of withdrawal symptoms, probably like a heroin addict “Jonesing”, only without the physical stress. To pontificate and employ more scientific language, well, let’s just say it sucked.

So yesterday, a Dell Dude, also uncharacteristically knowledgeable and with undeterminate accent, called and we did the thing with the CD, which entailed him calling me back a few times while the disc took its time doing its job.

After that, it took 2 restarts and I was back in business.

Being of the half full and silver lining persuation by nature, I will say that my computer’s performance has improved quite a bit since the CD and the Dell folks did what they did, it turns out that a lot of a slowness of loading, despite the fastest DSL available from AT&T/Yahoo!, was as much the fault of some sort of deterioration in my operating platform as it was from the drag (as opposed to thrust) of IE-7.

Boy, don’t I sound high-tech…

Back on-line, I was confronted by a highly daunting quantity of emails to reply to, emailed news/opinion subscription venues to work my way through and 2 1/2 days’ worth of spam that goes around the filters thanks to what is hopefully only negligence on the part of Blogspot (don’t blame “Desenex”, I’m a Munuvian and I use Word Press: They allow megaspammers to use their servers — the only spam that penetrates into my comment sections have Blogspot URLs, and they come both simultaneously and in large quantities). Blogspot is apparently hosting a movie sequel: I, Spambot.

Plus, I have two days’ worth of catching up to do as regards visiting the sites of many, many fellow bloggers, which for me is a priority pursuit after eating and sleeping.


Now that we’ve gotten the above “adventure” out of the way, the first thing I want to do is express my intense satisfaction at the election of Bobby Jindal as governor of Louisiana.

U.S. Rep. Bobby Jindal easily defeated 11 opponents and became the state’s first nonwhite governor since Reconstruction, decades after his parents moved to the state from India to pursue the American dream.

Jindal, a 36-year-old Republican, will be the nation’s youngest governor. He had 53 percent with 625,036 votes with about 92 percent of the vote tallied. It was more than enough to win Saturday’s election outright and avoid a Nov. 17 runoff.

This guy is phenomenal, he’s one of those rare politicians who embrace the concept of what I tend to think of as “practice over theory”. He does stuff rather than expound upon it, and at the relatively young age of 36 he has won the respect and confidence of the vast majority (just look at the figures, and these published by Yahoo!, a highly liberal, PC client of the Associated Press) of Louisiana voters.

I lived in Nawlins for many years in earlier periods of my adult life, from the late 1970s to the mid 1990s, from days when the Superdome and the Hibernia Tower were pretty much the city’s skyline to an era in which there is a full skyline of modern hotels and other high rises.

Truth to tell, I preferred things the old way — I so miss pre-high tech architecture (from back in the days when men were men and sheep were scared — sorry, my own sense of humor, as bizarre as it sometimes happens to be, rendered it impossible for me not to interject that particular semi-appropriate cliche), when an architect was someone who designed buildings via creativity rather than computer model and a mason was permitted to add artistic detail to the project.

But as usual, I digress…

Remember my admission re “half full” and “silver lining”s? Well, keeping in mind Hurricane Katrina’s introduction of profound tragedy to the Crescent City and much of the rest of southern Louisiana, with its resultant out-of-state relocation of so many residents (here, at risk of sounding like the racist I’m not — this is for any readers who tow the PC line rather than the realism one) from the low-income neighborhoods that produce gang bangers and related homicides and draw the bulk of public largesse, and the fact that residents of parishes like Orleans and Jefferson hold the same kind of sway at the polls that NYC voters do in New York State politics, my own interpretation of the Jindal victory is that:

Louisiana voters see their present circumstances as an opportunity to fix the presently (and historically) corrupt, southern Democrat “old boy network” run political system, and they’ve voted in Jindal, exactly “the man for the job”.

Bravo to the Louisiana electorate!

The next item I would have posted on had I not encountered my computer problem would have been linking this must read column by Diana West.

In my opinion, the most powerful segment reads:

The point of my talk — based on my new book, “The Death of the Grown-Up: How America’s Arrested Development Is Bringing Down Western Civilization” (linked below) — was to explain why perpetual adolescence is not just a cultural drag, but also dangerous to our way of life. I argued that the leveling of adult authority over the past half century or so was accompanied by a leveling of cultural authority.

This brought on the age of multiculturalism, a time when Western Civ (like the adult) no longer occupies its old pinnacle atop the hierarchy of cultures. The multiculti conception of equally valuable cultures (except for the West, which is deemed the pits) depends on a strenuous non-judgmentalism. This non-judgmentalism expresses itself in a self-censoring adherence to political correctness.

Such non-judgmentalism, such PC self-censorship, is infantilizing because it requires us to suppress our faculties of analysis and judgment.

Finally, we come to one of those topics that’s near and dear, as they say, to my heart: Security.

Security screeners at two of the nation’s busiest airports failed to find fake bombs hidden on undercover agents posing as passengers in more than 60% of tests last year, according to a classified report obtained by USA TODAY.

Screeners at Los Angeles International Airport missed about 75% of simulated explosives and bomb parts that Transportation Security Administration testers hid under their clothes or in carry-on bags at checkpoints, the TSA report shows.

At Chicago O’Hare International Airport, screeners missed about 60% of hidden bomb materials that were packed in everyday carry-ons — including toiletry kits, briefcases and CD players. San Francisco International Airport screeners, who work for a private firm instead of the TSA, missed about 20% of the bombs, the report shows. The TSA ran about 70 tests at Los Angeles, 75 at Chicago and 145 at San Francisco.

How comforting is that?

Anyone who has visited here over the last couple of years knows that as a protection professional I’ve kinda-sorta expressed my doubts where the TSA, at ground level, is concerned.

From my own considerable domestic airport experience (speaking strictly as a traveller), my personal top rating for professionalism in post-9/11 passenger screening goes to Logan International — those folks have no intention of allowing a second 9/11 from taking off out of Boston.

Look, my air travel is haphazard, I usually fly on short notice and, if the trip is multi-city, I take things one-way by one-way. The security programming in post 9/11 airline reservations systems often forwards requests that TSA search the luggage of/wand the bearers of one way or “day or two before reservations” fares and/or give them “special attention”. I have no problem with that. All “out of the norm” situations should be investigated.

As a human being, I tend to look at issues with the inclusion of “pros” & “cons”.

That is pretty much why I thought I should bring up this product.

Privacy experts are concerned that a full body x-ray scanner the Transportation Security Administration is testing will produce such revealing images that they could violate Americans’ civil liberties. And some experts, who see no civil liberty problems, think the machines are too expensive, too bulky, and not needed given current security procedures at airports.

“We are not convinced that it is the right thing for America,” said Barry Steinhardt, director of the American Civil Liberties Union’s Technology and Liberty Program. “We are skeptical of the privacy safeguards that the TSA is touting.”

TSA, which operates under the Department of Homeland Security, will be testing the Active Millimeter Wave body scanners at Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport, with plans to test machines at New York’s JFK and LAX in Los Angeles over the next few months.

TSA will also purchase eight millimeter wave units at a cost of $1.7 million to be used in other cities.

WTF is a “privacy expert”? Is this a bona fide job title or professional designation?

According to TSA, the process — a voluntary alternative to a pat-down during secondary screening — works as follows: A passenger steps into the machine and remains still for a matter of seconds, in two different positions, while the technology creates a three-dimensional image of the passenger from two antennas that simultaneously rotate around the body. Once complete the passenger steps through the opposite side of the millimeter wave portal.

The scanner’s manufacturers, L3 Communications, said the machine “penetrates clothing and packaging to reveal and pinpoint hidden weapons, explosives, drugs, and other contraband,” calling it “more reliable and less intrusive than pat-down searches.”

Yet “this technology produces strikingly graphic images of passengers’ bodies,” said Steinhardt. “Those images reveal not only our private body parts, but also intimate medical details like colostomy bags.”

“That degree of examination amounts to a significant - and for some people, humiliating - assault on the essential dignity of passengers that citizens in a free nation should not have to tolerate,” he said.

Before I comment on the immediate above, read this:

“They say that they are obscuring faces, but that is just a software fix that can be undone as easily as it is applied,” warned Steinhardt. “And obscuring faces does not hide the fact that the rest of the body will be vividly displayed.”

“Over time, the personnel operating this system will get mischievous, and it will be misused in ways that are very offensive,” added Jim Harper, director of Information Policy Studies at the libertarian Cato Institute.


“Yo, Ralph! This guy’s wearing a colostomy bag!”

Haw, Haw!!!!

What a bunch of Bee Ess!

Who gives a xxxx?

This is a typical liberal pitch, based upon “what if?” — “This could happen, so we need to flee, capitulate or downright surrender, to do otherwise would be politically incorrect!”

The above paragraph defines those on the far left to the letter.

Thank G-d that we right thinkers don’t follow the same directives that are adhered to by the left.

Okay, that should more than adequately convey my own attitude on the subject.

My other concern here is that –

TSA chief Kip Hawley, responding to previous reports about screeners missing hidden weapons, told a House hearing Tuesday that high failure rates stem from increasingly difficult covert tests that require screeners to find bomb parts the size of a pen cap. “We moved from testing of completely assembled bombs … to the small component parts,” he said.

This is total bullshit (© El Toro). It is “in name only” security. Either you secure a venue or you don’t, period. If you own a dress factory, it’s okay to hire seamstresses who skylark as they work, but if you run a security department, contractor or agency you’d damn well better employ people who can stay focused and for whom you’ve spent whatever sums it takes to see that they are trained and prepared for every eventuality, in their area of responsibility, that might come to pass.

Ex: A friend of mine was the security director for a major tenant brokerage firm in the World Trade Center at the time of the first bombing, which occured on the front end of a weekend. When the markets opened on Monday, he had relocated all the brokers, etc to a location on Hudson Street and they were doing business as though nothing had happened.

Ex 2: When I was employed in casino security in Nevada years ago, I was fortunate enough to work for a security director who believed in training the #&*%^$#& out of his floor officers, investigators and supervisors (After coming in at entry level, I was all of the these as time progressed). We attended classes, courses, workshops, lectures, etc in every area that even remotely affected us and our responsibilities, and it all paid off majorly for the casino in a number of ways that would require either a book or an extremely long post to even scratch…

To continue, however,

Terrorists bringing a homemade bomb on an airplane, or bringing on bomb parts and assembling them in the cabin, is the top threat against aviation. “Their focus is on using items easily available off grocery and hardware store shelves,” Hawley said.

In My Personal and Professional Opinion (s), security concerns are paramount in both the Public and Private sectors, and costs should never enter into the equation. If you’re a guest in My House and tragedy ensues, I’ll put my life on the line to ensure that you emerge unharmed.


October 13, 2007

No Rest For The Something-Or-Others…

…or something like that.

It seems that whenever I foresee a surplus of free time up ahead, something comes up that relegates it to the realm of the “almost”. Pardon my not-quite-serious sounding demeanor, but at present I’m listening to a song called Bamboo Town (the Tom Tom Club), the Tina Weymouth presiding. It is so basic, amusing — fun, and… and…Caribbean, and never fails to drape me in a whimsical mood.

So I had planned to post on a couple of things a couple of days ago, and it didn’t get to occur.

Al Gore’s prize was one of them, as I ran across an interesting item of a very definitive nature that hasn’t yet been censored by the Government Scientific Research Grants Police or whomever, yet nonetheless shows up the thankfully former Veep and his Inconvenient Myth rather well.

If you can spare the time, it will be worth it to take the 8 minutes and change to watch the video linked from the article. What Gore says, what the climatologists’ observations are.

Their findings that C02 increases have followed planetary warming trends by periods of decades, I’d say, relegate the ingenius, Nobel Prize winning buffoonery of the Algore critter to the cart before the horse category.

He blinded them with “science”.

Moving right along, there has been a proposal put forth by environmentalists that we change our culinary indulgences. I wonder what A.A. Milne would say if he learned that Kanga and Roo would be available for consumption at tomorrow’s Sunday brunch buffet.

This last item is hat-tipped to “News You Can Use”, courtesy of James Taranto.

In the Liberals Gone Wild Department, well, you know, there are a few big differences between the political left and the political right in this country that stand out big time.

Our conduct on the starboard side, our demeanor, our sense of civility, our consideration and respect for others’ property are evident. Our mature behavior.

When we conservatives stage a demonstration, what you see for the most part is a bunch of folks showing up in orderly numbers, most of us holding up signs.

When liberals stage a demonstration, it more often than not involves disruptive behavior, bags of feces, graffiti, property damage, vulgarity…

Having made that point, I refer you to a great column by Melanie Morgan that not only describes some of the above portside conduct, but also more than adequately describes the left’s complete lack of respect for those who lay their lives on the line to perpetuate the freedom liberals exploit in order to attempt to deprive us (headscratch here, them too) of it.

Oh, I did mention bags of feces, right?

************ GORE/NOBEL UPDATE ************

I enjoyed some good chuckles at some of the statements quoted in this article.

While supporters of Al Gore and his stance on global warming celebrated the former vice president’s win of the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize on Friday, skeptics of man-made climate change dismissed the award as another example of the Nobel committee naming someone “Liberal of the Year.”

“Al Gore should probably get a prize for most travel in a private jet, but not the Peace Prize,” said Myron Ebell, director of global warming policy at the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI). He also called the award, which was shared with the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), “a sad day for the Nobel legacy.”

Giving Gore the annual prize was “an unfortunate and misguided move by the Nobel committee,” Ebell said, because “the energy-rationing policies he espouses would perpetuate the poverty and human misery associated with political instability and conflict.”

Timothy Ball, a retired climatologist who leads the National Resources Stewardship Project, told Cybercast News Service that Friday’s award “just makes a travesty of the whole concept of Nobel Prizes.”

“This tells me everything I need to know about Nobel Prize winners,” he said. “I notice they just gave one to the guy who discovered holes in the ozone layer - but there are no holes in the ozone.”


by @ 10:03 pm. Filed under Just Talking

October 10, 2007

Some Allah Fun…

…from Julia Gorin.

by @ 4:39 pm. Filed under Humor, Truth Via Humor

October 8, 2007

Comment On The Blackwater Kerfuffle

Being a career (attemptedly semi-retired) security professional, I have been watching the Blackwater saga unfold with great interest. You really need to follow that link to their website and take a good gander at what they do, the services and training they provide and what they’re about, keeping in mind that while they’re big guys in their particular segment of the Protection Industry, they’re not without competitors — they simply happened to fall into the media spotlight due to an “incident” or two.

These beleaguered folks, by now, must know how Microsoft feels on any given day where litigious persecution is concerned.

Looking at the video embedded in the article regarding the Iraq shooting incident, I can’t help but observe that the aftermath views looked a lot more to me like those of a firefight than the results of a security detail running amok. Firms like Blackwater tend to do serious background checks on prospective employees and subcontractors and inject psychological data into the equation. The very idea that the Blackwater security team would have gone off on a collective berserk episode sounds suspiciously like the allegations (and slander) against U.S. Marines that now has traitor John (spit!!!!) Murtha in the legal hot seat, where I sincerely hope he fries to a fine golden brown.

I’m hoping that the “joint Iraqi and U.S.” investigation into the incident is conducted with strong U.S. participation, so we stand the best chance of getting the facts straight. I am infinitely more trusting of the investigative abilities of the likes of the Bureau and other U.S. agencies than I am of people whose religion endorses takkiya and who have lived their lives, or the bulk of same, under the thumb of a regime that determined innocence or guilt based on expediency rather than evidence.

It should be interesting to see how the arms-to-terrorists bit comes out — here, I draw no conclusions. Given the kind of revenues Blackwater enjoys, I doubt that they would take the risk of losing everything to generate the relatively paultry income of selling arms to the bad guys. On the other hand, there are always the possibilities that either some of their onsite personnel could be “in business for themselves” or, to paraphrase any liberal’s dampest and stickiest dreams, that the firm is arming the terrorists in order to perpetuate their own Iraq security operations.

None of the above is anywhere near even speculatory status with me, I’m simply tossing out some possibilities. I fervently hope the last idea is not the case.

All that aside, what actually comes into scrutiny is the mainstream media (MSM)’s reporting of the event.

Employees of Blackwater USA have engaged in nearly 200 shootings in Iraq since 2005, in a vast majority of cases firing their weapons from moving vehicles without stopping to count the dead or assist the wounded, according to a new report from Congress.

In at least two cases, Blackwater paid victims’ family members who complained, and sought to cover up other episodes, the Congressional report said. It said State Department officials approved the payments in the hope of keeping the shootings quiet. In one case last year, the department helped Blackwater spirit an employee out of Iraq less than 36 hours after the employee, while drunk, killed a bodyguard for one of Iraq’s two vice presidents on Christmas Eve.

The report by the Democratic majority staff of a House committee adds weight to complaints from Iraqi officials, American military officers and Blackwater’s competitors that company guards have taken an aggressive, trigger-happy approach to their work and have repeatedly acted with reckless disregard for Iraqi life.

But the report is also harshly critical of the State Department for exercising virtually no restraint or supervision of the private security company’s 861 employees in Iraq. “There is no evidence in the documents that the committee has reviewed that the State Department sought to restrain Blackwater’s actions, raised concerns about the number of shooting episodes involving Blackwater or the company’s high rate of shooting first, or detained Blackwater contractors for investigation,” the report states.

Before I even consider going any further, I must first address the part about Blackwater contractors firing from their vehicles and not stopping afterwards to check for wounded and dead, etc — anyone who is even remotely conversant with executive protection knows that when your detail comes under attack, your only job is to get the principal out of harm’s way — you don’t hang around for humanitarian purposes or whatever, you beat feet, protectee in tow. An assassination or abduction attempt could include a back-up detail, right there on the scene.

When a (protection) client’s life is in your hands, proprieties be damned. Your only purpose is to keep him/her alive, whatever happens to other people is their business.


The rest of the account is not only also pure MSM, it’s also very nearly the soulmate of a template that could have been used in the left’s failed attempt to embroil Blackwater in the same politics-based, politically motivated millieu as the selfsame “news” media attempted to place on the Marines a couple of years ago, as referenced above, during whose endeavor disgrace to the Marines and general purpose traitor Representative Jack Murtha, without awaiting even the preliminary results of any investigation, accused U.S. Marines of being cold blooded murderers.

This kind of stuff, given the fact that over three decades ago I had strongly considered a career as a journalist, really makes me despair of those on the port side of that particular equation — they are so dedicated to forcing their political point of view on the unsuspecting public that the truth, impartiality and accuracy of delivering unbiased, factual news to their faithful American audience has become a secondary consideration to these “reporters”.

Shame on them!

As far as the Democratic majority in Congress are concerned, well, they have been true to form on this issue — their actions on same, showing their usual lack of sincerity on any subject vs their politically opportunistic nature, have managed to tack a domestic agenda of theirs onto this situation:

The Senate on Monday gave final approval, 92 to 3, to a defense policy bill that included the establishment of an independent commission to investigate private contractors operating in Iraq and Afghanistan. The bill, which must be reconciled with a House version, faces a veto threat because it includes an expansion of federal hate-crimes laws


Emphasis mine.

In summary, our diplomats are using security firms like Blackwater for protection in terrorist/war zone environments they must negotiate in order to do their jobs without being murdered in the process. This is not a job for rent-a-cops from Wackenhut or Securitas, it is a job for seasoned combat veterans armed with military smallarms and prepared to return fire without compunction.

Blackwater’s chairman, Erik Prince, made no bones when it came to defending his firm on the Hill.

The State Department made their position clear here and here.

Condi Rice has responded thus.

It seems to me that the bottom line is that, having had their collective ass kicked public opinionwise, over the Petraeus Report, the left is now using Blackwater as a new avenue for attacking our endeavors in Iraq.

If only they expressed the same degree of concerns on our economy, our national security and even the most basic of moral considerations…

by @ 4:16 am. Filed under Security