Especially Not Over the Holiday Season!
It’s that time of year again. People want your money.
Charities know folks are in a giving frame of mind as the holidays draw near. Rip-off artists also realize that during this season folks are often just too busy to notice a scam when it’s right under their nose.
Hey, thieves need holiday spending money too and aren’t fussy about how they get it.
One old scam that’s now returned is the fake phone call from the Internal Revenue Service. [click to continue…]
Life as a Military Vet in America?
Now that the parades are over, now that we’ve thanked military service members for their sacrifices let’s drill down to take a look at what its really like to be a military veteran in the United States.
According to experts there are more than 23 million veterans in America. Thanks to a recent two-pronged push by corporations and the government the unemployment rate for vets is down to 3.9%. That’s a 7-year low and that is a rare bit of good news for this group.
Among the bad news: [click to continue…]
Countless Overdoses Nationwide Every Day
Can I just vent this week? Please? Thank you.
I am a sympathetic person, really I am. But the excessive and fawning news coverage of former NBA player Lamar Odom’s illegal drug use and self-imposed near death experience has been disgusting. To say the coverage has been excessive and out of proportion to its value as a news story is an understatement.
If this guy hadn’t played professional basketball or married into the camera-craving Kardashian clan we never would have heard about his recent medical emergency … and heard every minute detail about it. [click to continue…]
Vietnam Vets Returned to Scorn and Ridicule
Isn’t it ironic?
In the 70’s Vietnam veterans returned from an unpopular war to society’s scorn and cries of, “Baby killer!” Over the decades, we began to understand they had been brave and selfless and we learned to treat returning vets with understanding and support – wounded or not – as they transition back into society.
Ironically, we never went back to fully support the Vietnam-era vets who taught us the valuable lesson of honoring our warriors. [click to continue…]
The Veteran’s Administration – Long Mired in Delays
So, the U.S. government has finally decided to help some 2,000 Air Force personnel exposed to Agent Orange residue left over in airplanes used during the Vietnam War. They are now eligible for disability, medical and survivor benefits.
“Opening up eligibility for this deserving group of Air Force veterans and reservists is the right thing to do,” VA Secretary Bob McDonald announced.
Really? Then why didn’t the VA take this step long ago? These new recipients flew in Fairchild C-123 aircraft from 1969 to 1986. That’s between 46 and 29 years ago! [click to continue…]
U.S. Airstrike Against ISIS at Mosul Dam
Let’s not kid ourselves. We are back in the business of war again.
Oh, the politicians can call it whatever they want — like a counter-terrorism campaign — but when U.S. fighter plans are dropping bombs on ISIS forces in both Iraq and Syria we are at war.
When we send Navy vessels out to sea to facilitate the fight we are at war.
When we are simultaneously attacking a secondary group of Muslim extremists calling themselves Khorasan we are, in fact, engaging in a multi-level war.
Washington might cling to the belief that absent battalions of boots-on-the-ground it isn’t really a war. But the fact is, we already have plenty of troops on ground in that region (left over from past conflicts) and what are called “advisers.” [click to continue…]
This Veteran Needs to Come Home
Okay, I’m going to propose something radical. I’m sure it doesn’t fit into the strict confines of how our U.S. State Department conducts foreign policy but here goes …
How about we ask Mexico to do us a favor for once? Not only has that sieve of a country sat back and watched as more than 100-thousand desperate Hondurans, Guatemalans and El Salvadorans streamed through on their northward search for a safer life, they have also taken decades of generous U.S. foreign assistance without so much as a what-can-we-do-for-you?
Well, here’s what they can do for us. They can expedite the judicial process for U.S. Marine Sgt. Andrew Tahmooressi, held in Mexico since the last day of March, 2014. He is due back in court in Tijuana this coming Monday but without some high powered attention being applied it’s unlikely he will be quickly released. [click to continue…]
MSgt Foster on Left, Sgt Ralph Stanton on Right
For this Band of Brothers the Vietnam War never ended. Forty years after the fighting stopped they continue their struggle to be recognized as part of the unenviable group poisoned by the deadly herbicide Agent Orange.
These men who dedicated years to the U.S. military were stationed at Andersen Air Force Base in Guam. In the mid-60’s it was an important stop-over on the way to warzones in Southeast Asia. B-52 bombing missions targeting the Viet Cong – with names like Operation Arc Light and Operation Linebacker II — were launched from Andersen. Two years after the conflict the base became a way-stop for more than 100-thousand Vietnamese refugees seeking a new life in America.
Andersen AFB was a well-oiled machine thanks to the dedicated soldiers stationed there. Two of those men – Master Sargent LeRoy Foster and Sargent Ralph Stanton – found each other late in life and began to compare their multitude of similar health problems. [click to continue…]
Heard Voices, Murdered Twelve
How can I not write about what happened at the Navy Yard in Washington, DC this past week?
Once again a mentally troubled American picked up a gun and committed mass murder. A dozen dead in the blink of an eye, murdered by a former Navy man, who had left a trail of clues about his volatile mental state.
If only we could figure out a way to collect and analyze these types of red-flag clues – displayed ahead of time, according to research, in more than 60% of mass shooting cases – we might be able to stop massacres before they happen.
Navy officials say Aaron Alexis, 34, showed a “pattern of misbehavior” during his service. [click to continue…]
Ginger Slepski, Attacked by Black Teens – Why?
~ Let’s Talk Less About Race and More About Life
It keeps happening. Nearly every week there are more brutal crimes that bear all the earmarks of being racially motivated but because the victims are white you will probably never hear about them.
We’ve all seen the rallies around black victims of white perpetrated violent crime – and I’m fine with that. It is the right of every American citizen to peacefully protest. But when did it become acceptable to ignore the same types of crime when the roles are reversed and the victim is white?
Why is it that we hear so little hue-and-cry on behalf of Caucasians who are victimized by blacks?
I know this is a provocative topic but it is high time America talks about it and embrace the idea that no matter what the color of skin involved preying on others is not allowed – ever – period. [click to continue…]