October 20, 2007

I Think This Exposes the ‘We Support the Troops’ Charade for What It Is (Update: Restored)

Filed under: Taxes & Government,US & Allied Military — Tom @ 5:18 pm

From San Luis Obispo, CA (HT Drudge):

Photos of troops overseas are gone from Paso post office, inspiring outrage

From customers to congressmen, the removal of dozens of photos of U.S. troops serving in Iraq and Afghanistan – many of them with relatives who use the Paso Robles Post Office, where the pictures had been on display for years behind the counter – inspired outrage Friday.

The photos were taken down after a customer complained that the display was pro-war. When the issue came to the attention of the regional postal center, they asked that Paso Robles postmaster Mike Milby and his staff take them down because they violate a regulation against displays of non-postal business material at any U.S. post office.

“It’s an emotional issue and people look at their post office as a hub of the community, but the post office is there to do postal business and it’s not a place to post things or make displays,” said postal spokesman Richard Maher.

….. Maher said the post office will not be punished for the display.

I’m confident that there are many similar displays around the country (I know of at least two), and that attempts will be made to spread this ban to the rest of the country if the displays in San Luis Obispo aren’t restored.

The first bolded sentence above proves that at least antiwar person believes that supporting the troops is supporting the war. Therefore, photos, references, and well-wishers’ notes for area servicemen and women at a post office (for crying, out, loud), including many that merely wish for the soldiers’ safe return (heaven forbid) must be removed.

That person doesn’t support the troops, or the war. He or she isn’t alone. I would suggest that he or she is more typical than the fringe left or Old Media will dare admit.

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UPDATE: Restored.

Couldn’t Help But Notice (102007)

This is absolutely outrageous (HT Green Mountain Politics)

Two of the teens enmeshed in the nationally known “Jena Six” case helped present the most anticipated award during Black Entertainment Television’s Hip Hop Awards show broadcast Thursday night.

Carwin Jones and Bryant Purvis were introduced by Katt Williams, a comedian and the awards show’s host, as two of the students involved in a case of “systematic racism.”

….. Some have been critical of the appearance, saying the teens — accused of knocking (attack victim Justin) Barker unconscious and then stomping and kicking on him until another student intervened — shouldn’t be made out to be celebrities. Barker was treated at a local emergency room for close to three hours and then released.

Some? –

But the criticism has been extensive, including comments from those who said they made the trek to Jena for the rally.

“They can find somebody else to march for them (be)cause I will not be there the next time, and whoever invited them to this should be slapped,” one person wrote on the BET blog. “(You’re) not setting a good example for the justice that everyone is fighting for. You look like the thugs they said the Jena 6 are. Thanks for making us look stupid!”

A poster who said he was from near Jena said it is “sad making the Jena 6 out as heros.”

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Lawyers associated with indicted law firm Milberg Weiss are still giving to Democrats, and Democrats are still taking their money:

Since the indictment, 26 Democrats around the country, including four presidential candidates, have accepted $150,000 in campaign contributions from people connected to Milberg Weiss, according to state and federal campaign finance records. And some Democrats have taken public actions that potentially helped the firm or its former partners.

The recent contributors include current and former Milberg partners who had either been indicted or were widely reported to be facing potential criminal problems when they wrote their checks. One, William S. Lerach, was a fund-raiser for John Edwards’s presidential campaign until his guilty plea last month. Melvyn I. Weiss, a founder of the firm, gave the maximum $4,600 to Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York in June. Other firm members contributed to the presidential campaigns of Senators Barack Obama of Illinois and Joseph R. Biden Jr. of Delaware.

The howler of the month has to be this excuse-making in Mike McIntire’s New York Times article:

The reluctance of Democrats to shut off the cash spigot, even in the face of scandal, underscores how the pressure to raise money creates marriages of political interests that can be difficult to break up. Fred Wertheimer, a longtime advocate of campaign finance reform, called it the “natural outcome of a system where huge amounts of private contributions are raised and spent, and the political parties turn to groups with interests in government to feed the spending machine.”

Call it the “McCain-Feingold made me do it” defense.

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That “McCain Feingold made me do it” defense may come in handy here:

The (Los Angeles) Times examined the cases of more than 150 donors who provided checks to (the campaign of Hillary) Clinton after fundraising events geared to the Chinese community. One-third of those donors could not be found using property, telephone or business records. Most have not registered to vote, according to public records.

And several dozen were described in financial reports as holding jobs — including dishwasher, server or chef — that would normally make it difficult to donate amounts ranging from $500 to the legal maximum of $2,300 per election.

Of 74 residents of New York’s Chinatown, Flushing, the Bronx or Brooklyn that The Times called or visited, only 24 could be reached for comment.

Have you noticed, now that the Dems’ presidential candidates are raising more campaign cash than the GOP’s, how nobody in Old Media is opining about how generally evil the influence of money on elections is?

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“Please don’t read the article that follows” headline of the day:

Scathing Limbaugh letter nets $2.1M

If you don’t read the article and haven’t followed this story, you’d think that Rush wrote the letter.

Positivity: A Rose from Holly

Filed under: Positivity,US & Allied Military — Tom @ 6:57 am

At the web site of Arlington National Cemetery (HT Anna at A Rose by Another Name):

Published February 18, 2007
Courtesy of John Barry and the St. Petersburg (Florida) Times

ARLINGTON, Virginia – The widows and children had bundled themselves in parkas and snowsuits. They looked very young, standing in a frozen field of white headstones at Arlington National Cemetery.

It was 18 degrees, and the wind was blowing at a raw 20 mph. Each one clutched a screwdriver to punch holes in the icy ground. Holly darted among them with boxes of silk roses, her head bobbing above theirs.

She is a 6-foot-2 blond with the lanky physique of a model, except layered in sweatshirts. “Amazon infidel,” she calls herself.

She is out among the headstones every week and knows the stories behind every one. The widows and the kids took the roses and scattered among the headstones of Section 60. It’s the section set aside for men and women killed in action in Iraq and Afghanistan. About 300 are laid to rest there.

The widows made their way through the rows. At their husbands’ graves, they knelt and punched at the stiff sod with their screwdrivers. Some of them had small hammers, and you could hear their tap-tapping. The children helped. When they had made their holes, they inserted the wire stems of the silk red roses. They knelt quietly in the wind.

The word had gone out by Internet that Holly would be at Section 60 on the Saturday before Valentine’s Day. Last year, she spread most of the roses herself. But this year, widows and children, mothers and fathers had heard about this woman named Holly and drove or flew in from all over the country. There were about 50 of them.

Almost no one knew her full name: Holly Holeman. She was just Holly to them, a mysterious e-mailer who had sent photos of headstones, of flowers by the graves. All year, the e-mails came, far-off reassurances that someone was taking care of the graves.

Eventually, they learned that her day job is making floral arrangements and delivering them to funerals at Arlington.

Holly had found the families through a Web site run by a Long Island businessman named Michael Patterson. It has biographies and news accounts of all American casualties from Iraq and Afghanistan buried in Section 60. Patterson started it while researching the history of the cemetery for a book he has always wanted to write. Now keeping up the Web site has overtaken his book.

He got one of Holly’s mysterious e-mails one day. “She wouldn’t give me her last name. She said, ‘Here’s a photo of a new headstone. Use it if you think it’s worthwhile.’ ” He did, and soon she was sending dozens more photos. He posted them: Courtesy of Holly.

The families tried to figure it out. Each thought about the day of the funeral. Was she that tall woman they saw standing in the distance, the one partly behind a tree?

Paula Davis ran into her a year ago on her regular Sunday visit to the grave of her son Justin. He was 19 when he died last June on a rooftop in southeastern Afghanistan. Friendly fire was the suspected cause.

Davis lives in Gaithersburg, Maryland, so she gets by to visit all the time, haunted by the fear that her son and all the others in Section 60 will soon be forgotten. She pictures a silent field, no visitors. “People go on with their lives,” she says.

One Sunday, a tall, fast-talking woman approached Davis. She offered oatmeal cookies and coffee. Davis learned this woman wasn’t about to forget anyone.

Go here for the rest of the story.