By the Way…The Civil War Started Today

A few moments in history from American Minute:

Less than two months after Lincoln was inaugurated President, the Civil War began APRIL 12, 1861, with Confederate troops in Charleston, South Carolina, firing upon Fort Sumter.

The Confederate Army was unstoppable, twice winning battles at Bull Run, Virginia, just twenty miles from Washington, D.C., forcing the Union troops to retreat to the fortifications of the Capitol.

It was not until the Battle of Gettysburg, over two years into the war, that the tide began to turn. President Lincoln confided to Noah Brooks:

“I have been driven many times upon my knees by the overwhelming conviction that I had nowhere else to go.”

In his General Order, November 15, 1862, President Abraham Lincoln wrote:

“The President, Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy, desires and enjoins the orderly observance of the Sabbath by the officers and men in the military and naval service.

The importance for man and beast of the prescribed weekly rest, the sacred rights of Christian soldiers and sailors, a becoming deference to the best sentiment of a Christian people, and a due regard for the Divine Will demand that Sunday labor in the Army and Navy be reduced to the measure of strict necessity.”

I guess Abe wasn’t aware of the ‘Separation of Church & State”.

Promises, Promises

From Joe ‘Pags’ Pagliarulo & The Blaze:

Most of us outside of Illinois became aware of Barack Obama in 2004.  He was a candidate for senator and asked to give a speech at the Democratic convention that year in Boston.  He was interesting.  A fresh face — in stark contrast to old Washington embodied by the Democrat nominee Senator John Kerry of Massachusetts.  He had a certain confidence, youth and ability to grab your attention with how he delivered the speech.  It would be a few years before we really started understanding who this man was politically.

In 2007 — when some of the candidates running for the 2008 nominations on both sides of the aisle became apparent — I was brought into New York to do a show for CNN.  On the show were: Roland Martin (liberal currently with CNN), Rachel Maddow (liberal currently with MSNBC), and one other man — another liberal whose name escapes me, and me – the lone conservative on the panel.  It was assumed I’d be pulling for Rudy Giuliani the former mayor of New York, I guess, because we were both white and Italian.  It was odd that the assumption was made.  I made it clear, however, that I was not a Giuliani guy because of his stance on abortion.  I mentioned I was looking into McCain but was also looking into Obama.  Why?  Because he was young, energetic and gave one heck off a speech.  I still didn’t know much about him other than what I saw and heard — like most Americans.

  The examination didn’t take long before I found out he was the most vehement supporter of abortion I’d ever heard speak and he was, at his very core, a socialist.  He was and is a guy that believes the ruling class gets all the spoils and the rest of us idiots get what the bloated government decides we should get and we should thank said government for the table scraps.

Obama ran on feel good messages like, “Yes We Can!” and “Change You Can Believe In.” He was going to cut the deficit and fix everything George W. Bush did wrong. As soon as he got into office, of course, he raised taxes on regular Americans ($.62 per pack on cigarettes) and pushed through the stimulus package which cost the American taxpayers nearly a trillion dollars after which we saw the economy get exponentially worse, not better as promised.  How did he get these things done?  There is a formula.  Say whatever it takes to get a law passed, smile a lot and do whatever you want in the end.  Remember how he would never raise any tax of any kind for individuals making less than $200k per year or families making less than  $250k?

 ”I can make a firm pledge under my plan, no family making less than $250,000 a year will see any form of tax increase. Not your income tax, not your payroll tax, not your capital gains taxes, not any of your taxes.”  Barack Obama – September 12, 2008.

He clearly didn’t mean it, but it was a talking point he repeated knowing full-well it would resonate with voters.  He pledged over and over again to put every bill online for us to see for five days before they were brought to a vote.  He would stop “corporate welfare.”  He promised transparency, and more.  Matter of fact, he listed seven things he’d stop or change:  

1. Make Government Open and Transparent
2. Make it “Impossible” for Congressmen to slip in Pork Barrel Projects
3. Meetings where laws are written will be more open to the public (republicans shut out)
4. No more secrecy
5. Public will have 5 days to look at a Bill
6. You’ll know what’s in it (Republican Senators didn’t know)
7. We will put every pork barrel project online 

This has become a predictable pattern for this president.  He’ll say anything and whether he plans to follow through has never mattered. He’ll say anything no matter its validity, and not think twice about it. He’ll repeat it until the words saturate the American psyche and many blind followers will fall in line and continue the repetition for him. He must have gotten bored of the same ol’ same ol’ because now he’s added the non sequitur to his repertoire and he’s brought back a favorite from the middle of last year. It’s really a variation on a theme: The rich have what they have and that’s not fair. The regular/average American deserves it all too and we can get it for them by taking it from those evil rich people and corporations. 

Last June, the president put his new-found fondness for things that just don’t have anything to do with one another to good use. He started saying things like:

“If we choose to keep those tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires, corporate jet owners, hedge fund managers, oil & gas companies that are making 100′s of Billions of dollars, then that means we have to cut some kids off from getting a college scholarship. That means we have to stop funding certain grants for medical research. That means that food safety may be compromised. That means that Medicare has to bear a greater part of the burden. Those are the choices we have to make.

Before we ask our seniors to pay for more healthcare, before we cut our children’s education, before we sacrifice our commitment to the research and innovation that will help create more jobs in the economy, I think it’s only fair to ask an oil company or corporate jet owner that has done so well, to give up that tax break that no other business enjoys. I don’t think that’s real radical. I think the majority of Americans agree with that.” – President Barack Obama News Conference 06/29/11

It, on its face, was ridiculous. Do you really think that because rich people have earned a lot of money through hard work or entrepreneurial spirit or invention and have been able to buy nice things that people can’t go to college? Or that the elderly can’t get care? Or that food won’t be safe? Really? It was crazy and without merit but, he must have liked how it sounded because repeated it whenever he saw a camera or a microphone or newspaper writer. The message didn’t work, and taxes weren’t raised on the “evil rich,” but, he must have felt the strategy still had legs because it’s back.

The latest incarnation of the Obama non sequitur reared it’s ugly head on March 29th. This time, the president once again, went after big oil. Much like he did last year, the president said, “Today, members of Congress have a simple choice to make. They can stand with big oil companies, or they can stand with the American people.” Huh? Are oil companies somehow not American? The reason for the Rose Garden speech was to pit big oil against the American people and playing the two sides against the middle — that middle being Congress. The only problem: there is no back and forth between the American people and the oil companies. The American people lay the blame for the highest gas prices we’ve ever seen this time of the year squarely on the shoulders of the Obama administration.

The suggestion through the rhetoric was that if Congress stopped the tax deductions for the big oil companies, the burden on taxpayers (and gasoline users) would be lessened. He wants us to believe that he’ll either send the money to us (yeah right) or the price at the pump will go down if the deductions were ended. Think about it. Do you really think the price per gallon will go down should Congress decide to increase the tax burden on these companies? The plan, of course, is to divert attention from him and his administration to Congress to cast the blame there. He knows going in that Congress will not stop the tax deductions — but that’s not the real goal. He cannot run on his record. He cannot point to how he’s held to his campaign promises, or fixed the economy, or not raised taxes on regular folks, or held unemployment to under 8 percent. So, the only real campaign plan is to find a boogie-man (or men and women).

If the gasoline prices happen to fall between now and the election, you won’t hear anything else about it. If they stay high or go higher, the president will remind us all how he tried to get Congress to go after the oil companies and how the REPUBLICANS refused. Smart. Underhanded. Disingenuous. Politics.

Afghanistan; What’s the Point?

By: The Common Constitutionalist

The attack on Afghanistan began Oct. 7, 2001 dubbed operation ‘Enduring Freedom’. It was in response to the 9/11 attacks. The stated goal was the dismantling of the al-Qaeda terrorist organization and ending its use of Afghanistan as a base.

The United States also said that it would remove the Taliban regime from power and attempt to create a viable democratic state.

The George W. Bush administration stated that, as policy, it would not distinguish between terrorist organizations and nations or governments that harbored them. Of course, it did, Saudi Arabia being a prime example.

On June 22, 2011, President Obama announced that the end of 2011 would withdraw 10,000 U.S. troops. An additional 23,000 troops will leave the country by the summer of 2012. After the withdrawal of 10,000 U.S. troops, 80,000 are left participating in the war. The War in Afghanistan is the United States’ second longest running military conflict, only the Vietnam War lasted longer.

 Almost 2,000 deaths, over 15,000 wounded. For what? What is our vital interest? I have been searching for days to find what our mission actually is over there. I cannot.

What a monumental waste of manpower, money and time. Our brave forces volunteer for military service, only to be sent over to that hellhole to be shot at & blown up & for what? They don’t know what the mission is. They don’t know what they’re fighting for. They are just told to clear those buildings, clear that road, etc. That’s not a mission. That’s a task and a very dangerous one at that. Especially when more often than not they can’t even shoot back without special permission. The enemy can shoot at us, exhaust his supply of ammunition, put the weapon & simply walk away. We are not allowed to fire on him as he calmly strolls away.

Just imagine if General Patton were told the enemy were hold up in a Mosque. There would be no more Mosque. But not in today’s enlightened military.

We, in this country cannot fight a war to win any longer. We don’t have the stomach for it. We’re too civilized, I guess.

Bring the troops home now; every last one of them, and never go to war again until such time as we can develop the courage & determination to actually win.

What the heck happened to us? Everyone knows the old saying “War is Hell”. I agree. War is hell and no one hates war more than the military. But it is also sometimes necessary. It should however be quite uncommon. We shouldn’t be inserting ourselves into every conflict around the globe.

Our leaders have somehow morphed vital or national interests into Meals on Wheels, saving the whole world, or democracy building.

Any reasonable person would understand that we can’t save the whole world and democracy building is a fool’s errand in most countries.

The United States is a good, just and very charitable country. I understand the want of many to right the wrongs in the world. I certainly don’t have a quarrel with our military acting as first responders after a natural disaster somewhere on this planet, but beyond that we must first consider our own interests.

Is the war in Afghanistan being fought for our interests or the interests of others?

Consider the wars past that America has become involved. The ones we have won and those we’ve lost.

World War II was the last real war that America has won, the Cold War notwithstanding. Of course, Vietnam was the last that we lost.

In World War II we lost many battles but yet won the war. We won the war due to overwhelming force and an understanding of what had to be done regardless of the cost. We bombed cities such as Berlin inflicting horrible civilian casualties. Something we would never consider today. These attacks were not by accident. These were purposeful. They were designed to bring the enemy to their knees. The same was proven of the atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. All these horrific attacks were designed to bring the war to a swifter end and of course they did.

World War II was primarily controlled by the military and less by politicians. Vietnam was fought more by politicians than the military. Unlike World War II, in Vietnam, America won every battle yet still lost the war. Every time our military got close to actually winning the politicians would inject themselves into the situation and order the military to back off and cease hostilities. We could have and would have won the Vietnam War, yet we lost. How is this possible? Easy. One cannot fight a war from Washington DC. As in domestic politics the further one is removed from the front lines the more screwed up things get, which brings us right back to Afghanistan.

So I ask again, what is our mission over there? When, if ever, can we declare victory? What would victory even look like? No one can tell me these answers because there are no answers. This is not a war. It’s a never-ending conflict that can only end with us running away with our tails between our legs again.

If it were up to me, I would scorch the poppy fields, spray chemicals on the fields so that they could not be used again and leave. I would then cut all ties and end all financial assistance to any country on the terror watchlist or those with a despotic leader. Finally I would issue a proclamation, worldwide, stating that if attacked, we will find the country that harbored the attackers and bomb said country into oblivion and then leave.  No rebuilding, no assistance, no nothing. If a country chooses to harbor terrorists, they will know ahead of time the price they will pay for that choice.

Black Gold

A California family claims it is owed a $130 million stake in Coca-Cola Co after their father bought an antique stock certificate in 2008 for a mere $5.

Tony Marohn spent the final year of his life battling the beverage company after tracing the Palmer Union Oil Co certificate to Coca-Cola.

Marohn died in 2010, but his family has taken on the legal battle, saying it is entitled to about 1.8million shares of the soft-drink maker.

Marohn had traced the certificate by way of long-forgotten companies such as Petrocarbon Chemicals Inc and Taylor Wine Co, according to court documents.

But before the family buys that vacation home in Aspen, they’ll have to convince a skeptical Delaware Chancery Court judge that the law is on their side.

‘This is a new version of the Beverly Hillbillies,’ Judge Leo Strine said at a hearing on January 31, according to a court transcript. He was referring to a 1960s television comedy about a backwoods family that becomes rich by finding oil on their property.

If upheld, Marohn’s estate would become among the largest non-institutional investors in Coca-Cola, according to Reuters data.

‘The claim of Mr Marohn’s estate that it is entitled to millions of dollars in Coca-Cola stock – based on a canceled stock certificate for a long-defunct oil company purchased at an estate sale – is meritless and unfair to the Company’s millions of legitimate shareholders,’ said a Thursday statement from Coca-Cola.

Bob Kerstein, who runs the scripophily.com website, which researches and sells antique stock certificates, said he gets lots of inquiries from people who want to redeem old certificates.

‘We get people who have blank stock certificates and they think they have hit the lotto,’ said Kerstein. He said he has to break the news to them they need to be on record with the company as well.

Margules, the Wilmington, Delaware attorney for Marohn’s estate, said he thinks he can persuade Strine that the law favors his client. Marohn’s certificate was endorsed and assigned, but the transferee was left blank.

Marohn filled in his name and began digging through corporate records. He eventually wrote to Coca-Cola to demand 1.8million shares of common stock for his 1,625 Palmer Union Oil shares.

The company refused, and sued Marohn in Delaware’s Chancery Court in 2009 seeking a declaration he was not entitled to the company’s stock.

Marohn’s estate filed papers last week showing courts have upheld that a person who was issued a stock certificate and then endorsed and assigned it – but left blank the name of the transferee — essentially transformed the certificate into a bearer stock. By writing his name on the stock, Marohn became the legal owner, his estate argued.

Strine said in January he would soon decide how to proceed. He also warned the Marohn estate against pursuing ‘a drive by of a public company’ to extract money to drop the case.

‘It’s just not a sport,’ Strine said.

 
 Attribution: Mail Online

Helen is a Stand-Up Gal

JERUSALEM (The Blaze/AP) — The top Palestinian envoy to the U.S. has honored longtime journalist and former White House correspondent Helen Thomas in an award ceremony.

A Palestinian official says Maen Erekat, the PLO representative in Washington, hosted Thomas at a dinner at his residence.

The storied columnist, who is 91, was forced stepped down two years ago from her job with the Hearst Newspaper chain after video footage emerged showing her outside the White House saying Israelis should “get the hell out of Palestine.”

*Thomas was born of Lebanese immigrants. We all know Israel & Lebanon are not exactly bossom buddies. Maybe that has something to do with her hatred of Israel.

*Doesn’t Helen Thomas, the lover of the United Nations, recall who established Israel in 1948? Of course it was her beloved U.N. Does that mean the U.N. was wrong Helen? Sorry for the digression.

The Palestinian official says the event was to honor Thomas for her “stand against the occupation.” He spoke on condition of anonymity because of what he described as the issue’s sensitivity.

Israel isn’t too happy about the event. Israel’s ambassador to the U.S. Michael Oren told Israeli news outlet Haaretz on Tuesday that it shows the Palestinians don’t want to meet the “basic requisites of peace.”

Oren added he was “appalled by the award ceremony given by the PLO delegation in Washington to Helen Thomas, who has been completely shunned by all decent Americans after making anti-Semitic remarks, along with teaching Palestinian children to hate the Jewish State and to glorify suicide bombers.”

According to a PLO statement obtained by Haaretz, the PLO “presented Thomas with the appreciation and blessing of the president and the Palestinian people, for all of her actions supporting Palestine in the West.”

* Editorial Comments added

Constitution 101 (7)

Lesson 7: “Crisis of Constitutional Government”

Study Guide

Overview:

At the heart of the American constitutional crisis of the mid-nineteenth century stood the moral, social, and political evil of slavery. At stake in this crisis was the future of republican self-government.

Abraham Lincoln saw the dilemma facing the nation as the “crisis of a house divided.” While the American Founders worked to put slavery, as Lincoln said, “on the course of ultimate extinction,” the institution had instead flourished in the first half of the nineteenth century. By the 1850s, efforts to expand slavery threatened to tear the nation apart.

Illinois Senator Stephen Douglas championed the idea that Americans living in the territories should choose whether or not slavery should be legal there. “Popular sovereignty” eventually became the law of the land with the passage of the Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854, which repealed the Missouri Compromise of 1820.

For Lincoln, “popular sovereignty” was an abandonment of moral principle. Man does not have a moral right to choose a moral wrong. Self-government cannot mean ruling other human beings without their consent. The Kansas-Nebraska Act, although disguised in the language of liberty and self-government, was in fact at odds with the core principles of the American regime.

The Supreme Court’s Dred Scott decision marked a further departure from the principles of the American Founding. Writing for the majority in 1857, Chief Justice Roger Taney declared that the Founders never intended for the principles of natural right enunciated in the Declaration to apply to blacks—whether enslaved or emancipated. Furthermore, Congress had no right to ban slavery in the territories. For Lincoln and the opponents of slavery, this decision was not only constitutionally and historically wrong, but it also further enabled the legal expansion of slavery nationwide.

Lincoln and Douglas debated both popular sovereignty and the Dred Scott decision in their Illinois Senate race of 1858. Douglas maintained that self-government and slavery were compatible and mutually beneficial in certain climates, and it was up to the majority of citizens to determine whether or not the conditions prevailing in their territory or state made slavery useful. Lincoln countered that republicanism and slavery could never exist in harmony, and that self-government could never be compatible with the denial of consent. America, he held, could not long exist half slave and half free; it must become one or the other.

They’re all the Same

The following video is of the famous progressive firebrand, Huey Long. This redistribution speech is from December of 1934, 78 years ago. We all know the old saying, “The more things change, the more they stay the same”. Well, listen carefully to old Huey and tell me it’s not the same speech, with the same villains (new names, but the same villains), such as Big Oil and the rich. Tell me, some 78 years later, this identical speech couldn’t or wouldn’t be given by Obama or any other frothing progressive today. Huey would have received a heros welcome from the ‘Occupy Wallstreet’ crowd.

Face Lift for the Oat Man

The Quaker Oats man featured on the boxes of the popular oatmeal shed five pounds and now sports a more youthful look in the brand’s new logo to highlight its healthy products.

PepsiCo Inc, owner of the cereal company, also decided to give the jolly-faced character a haircut and broader shoulders so consumers can associate the image with ‘energy and healthy choices.’

The makeover of the rosy-cheeked man, known as ‘Larry’, is part of a new direction to make the 134-year-old brand ‘fresh and innovative.’

The new physique removes the man’s double chin.

The rolls and plumpness that made his face and neck look rounder were toned down so he can appear slimmer.

‘We took about five pounds off him,’ said Michael Connors, vice president of design at Hornall Anderson, which was in charge of the change.

The man’s shoulders have greater emphasis so Larry can be seen as a stronger, more vibrant image

His white hair, which dangles down from his top hat, is also shortened as a way to keep him looking thin.

The traditional logo featured Larry on a white background with his fuller face centered within a gold band.

The new image has the man in front of a two-toned red background so it ‘adds a sense of movement,’ according to Connors.

The company did not want to dramatically change Larry – instead opting for subtle differences – to keep the image consistent with consumers who are used to the old look.

Quaker Oats became a registered trademark in 1877 as a breakfast cereal. Owners Henry Seymour and William Heston wanted the products to be associated with good quality and honest value.

The company used an image of a man in “Quaker garb” to be connected with its products.

In 1922, the chubby-cheeked Larry was first prominent on the Quaker Quick Oats box.

His face would remain on the box for decades, including on labels of the oatmeal in 1995 when the company submitted a petition to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to establish the first health claim for a specific food.

The oatmeal became the first to say on its label that the products help improve heart health.

Attribution: Mailonline

Look Mama, It’s the Devil!

And Now for the Rest… Of the Story:

Did Paul Harvey’s 1965 Broadcast “If I Were the Devil” Predict America’s Downfall?

by:

Paul Harvey Aurandt (1918–2009), better known as Paul Harvey, was America’s National Commentator. His listening audience was estimated, at its highest, to be around 24 million people a week. “Paul Harvey News was carried on 1,200 radio stations, 400 Armed Forces Network stations and 300 newspapers. His broadcasts and newspaper columns have been reprinted in the Congressional Record more than those of any other commentator.”

One of Paul Harvey’s most popular messages was the Christian classic “The Man and the Birds” based on a verse from the book of Job: “Ask the birds of the sky, and they will tell you” (12:7b).
Paul Harvey didn’t just report the news with his distinctive voice; he would always make the point that the news was reflective of society. You could take the pulse of America’s moral health by reading the daily newspaper.

In 1964, Paul Harvey wrote “If I Were the Devil.” Various versions of the article have appeared over time. I first heard about it from Glenn Beck’s show, but it’s been floating around the internet for some time.[1]
Before Paul Harvey wrote “If I Were the Devil,” the Italian Marxist Antonio Gramsci (1891–1937) explained the steps necessary for radicals to transform a nation without firing a shot:
[T]hey must enter into every civil, cultural and political activity in every nation, patiently leavening them all as thoroughly as yeast leavens bread. . . .[2] [This] would require a ‘long march through the institutions’ — the arts, cinema, theater, schools, colleges, seminaries, newspapers, magazines, and the new electronic medium [of the time], radio.”[3]

The following is the text from an audio version of Paul Harvey’s “If I were the Devil.” you can see that Gramsci was on target and his radical heirs were successful:
“If I were the devil, I wouldn’t be happy until I had seized the ripest apple on the tree — Thee. So I’d set about however necessary to take over the United States. I’d subvert the churches first — I would begin with a campaign of whispers. With the wisdom of a serpent, I would whisper to you as I whispered to Eve: ‘Do as you please. Do as you please.’

“To the young, I would whisper, ‘The Bible is a myth.’ I would convince them that man created God instead of the other way around. I would confide that what is bad is good, and what is good is ‘square.’ And the old, I would teach to pray. I would teach them to pray after me, ‘Our Father, which art in Washington…’

“And then I’d get organized. I’d educate authors on how to lurid literature exciting, so that anything else would appear dull and uninteresting. I’d threaten TV with dirtier movies and vice versa. I’d pedal narcotics to whom I could. I’d sell alcohol to ladies and gentlemen of distinction. I’d tranquilize the rest with pills.”

“If I were the devil I’d soon have families that war with themselves, churches that war with themselves, and nations that war with themselves; until each in its turn was consumed. And with promises of higher ratings I’d have mesmerizing media fanning the flames.”

“If I were the devil I would encourage schools to refine young intellects, and neglect to discipline emotions — just let those run wild, until before you knew it, you’d have to have drug sniffing dogs and metal detectors at every schoolhouse door.”

“Within a decade I’d have prisons overflowing, I’d have judges promoting pornography — soon I could evict God from the courthouse, and then the schoolhouse, and then from the houses of Congress. And in His own churches I would substitute psychology for religion, and deify science. I would lure priests and pastors into misusing boys and girls, and church money. If I were the devil I’d make the symbols of Easter an egg and the symbol of Christmas a bottle.”

“If I were the devil I’d take from those, and who have, and give to those wanted until I had killed the incentive of the ambitious. What do you bet I could get whole states to promote gambling as the way to get rich? I would question against extremes and hard work, and Patriotism, and moral conduct.”

 “I would convince the young that marriage is old-fashioned, that swinging more fun, that what you see on the TV is the way to be. And thus I could undress you in public, and I could lure you into bed with diseases for which there is no cure. In other words, if I were to devil I’d keep on doing on what he’s doing. Paul Harvey, good day.”

Notes:
1. I’m a little suspicious that the poor quality audio version might be a revised version done by someone else to make it sound like Paul Harvey. [↩]
2. Malachi Martin, The Keys of This Blood: The Struggle for World Dominion Between Pope John II, Mikhail Gorbachev and the Capitalist West (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1990), 245. [↩]
3. Patrick J. Buchanan, Death of the West: How Dying Populations and Immigrant Invasions Imperil Our Country and Civilization (New York: St. Martin’s Press/Thomas Dunne Books, 2001), 77. [↩]