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24 July 2009

Race for a Clue

Check it out:

Concerned neighbor in a nice neighborhood sees 2 men trying to force their way into then front, then the back of a house across the street from hers. She does not recognize the men.

Concerned neighbor calls 911 and reports her observations, which appears to be a potential burglary.

Police respond to concerned neighbor's 911 call and arrive at the subject house. 2 men respond to the door from inside the house (with a now open door) when police call out.

Police state they are investigating a potential burglary in progress. One of the men says he lives there. Police ask for him to step outside the home and to provide his identification to further their investigation and to confirm his claim.

Man refuses to provide his identification and refuses to step outside the home, but instead becomes belligerent and verbally combative with the officers.

Police arrest the man and take him to the police station where they are able to identify him and summarily charge him with disorderly conduct.

What would you do if you saw that scene in your neighborhood?

What would you want your neighbor's to do if they saw that scene at your house?

This is a summary of a actual incident and the above stated facts are not in dispute. And I challenge anyone to challenge the righteousness of the above outcome.

So why discuss it? Well, some race baiters found the need to replace the words "concerned citizen" with "white woman", "man" with "black man" and "police" with "white police".

Now, let's take a collective breathe and wipe the vomit from our chin. Is anyone else getting sick of the race baiters taking up space on our computer and television screens?

Even our country's president chimed in to call the action of the police "stupid" and declined an opportunity retract that statement even when confronted with the facts of the arrestee's adolescent behavior (which is a compatriot of our president). Yep, go look it up.

Indeed, we are surrounded by racists, but they are certainly NOT the people they want us to believe they are.

Re-read the factual rundown and then look no further than the people who insist that "white" and "black" are added to the story for the clear answer on who the racists are in this story.

What is the solution?

10 July 2009

Racist Pig!!

True Racism is bad, for sure. Alleged racism as a means to promote an agenda is disgraceful.

If a minority acts inappropriately and is punished... does that make the punisher a racist? Do some authorities adjust their punishment of minorities for fear of being labelled a racist?

For example, I wonder if we will hear the back story to this row ....

Pa. to investigate pool discrimination allegations

And the great equalizer (which is what the equal rights flag wavers claim they are seeking - you know, equality) is of course whether one can replace the description of a person with any other race and for the sentence to still pass the smell test.

I submit that many, many people and organization's fail this... such as: since there is a Black Entertainment Television (BET), how how the public react to a channel dedicated to whites, or Asians or Hispanics called for example, the White Entertainment Television channel? How many people assume I am a racist for even bringing that up? Egad.

We can do better at promoting equality but that starts with actually treating people equally ... instead of finding new and different (and offensive) ways to assert one's perceived racial entitlement. Bad is bad and good is good, regardless of color. Are you listening Sharpton and Co?

10 June 2009

Deputy Tasers woman, 72, during traffic stop

Deputy Tasers woman, 72, during traffic stop (click to read the article)

She apparently dared the deputy to do while becoming combative during a traffic stop. All procedures were followed by the Deputy and the woman, Kathryn Winkfein, needlessly escalated the event with her arrogance and belligerence.

Oh yeah, she was racing through a construction zone full of workers before she was stopped.

And oh yeah, before the video was released of her antics, she lied about her role in the incident, choosing to blame everything on the police.

Watch the video of her ridiculous antics during the traffic stop here.

26 May 2009

DFW businesses' altruism is good PR, experts say | Business |

If a company CAN do good, then a company SHOULD do good.

DFW businesses' altruism is good PR, experts say Business

Memorialize Your Day

(Encore Article From 2008)

Happy Memorial Day Folks.

3 day weekend, right? Kind of like MLK Day perhaps? Here's wishing for a little more Memorial in your Memorial Day...

Since 1868 Americans have - or should - honor the memory of U.S. armed Forces killed in action, as a result of their combat wounds or that died while a prisoner of war. Traditionally, we are supposed to fly our flags at half staff until noon, then full staff after that. Then at 3pm, wherever we are, we are supposed to offer remembrance to those volunteer soldiers that have died while protecting our country. Whatever we do, it is surely not enough.

"It doesn't take a hero to order men into battle. It takes a hero to be one of those men who goes into battle."
- General Norman Schwarzkopf

In our country's most recent war in Iraq, a Rand Corporation study found about 20 percent U.S. soldiers returning (nearly 300,000 soldiers) have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or depression. PTSD is a brain injury causing the failure to cope after a major system shock, such as a significant accident, a sexual assault or combat. Symptoms include persistent, frightening memories, emotional numbness, a feeling of detachment, headaches and insomnia. Some symptoms may remain dormant for years before they surface and many people never recover even when treated. PTSD is serious, serious business.

While researching breastfeeding in 'the ocean' I was horrified and perturbed to hear of a growing collection of mothers that label children as having PTSD if they don't breastfeed until they start high school, or something like that. To them, giving a sandwich instead of a boob to a developing child was comparable to giving them combat stress. Grrrr.

For actual PTSD diagnosis, we are just starting to see the costs associated. Dollar costs.... and lost lives. According to the National Institute of Mental Health: "it's quite possible that the suicides and psychiatric mortality of this war could trump the combat deaths.''

Wow. Think about that. More self inflicted deaths than combat deaths because of brain injuries.

"A single death is a tragedy; a million deaths is a statistic."
- Joseph Stalin

We have over 1 million servicemen and women deployed in the theatre of war currently. Since 9/11, it is estimated that a quarter of them have exhibited PTSD. Out of every 100,000 Army personnel deployed in Iraq, 19 of them commit suicide (the highest rate in over 25 years).

As of January 2006, over 3200 Iraq vets have suffered head or brain injuries, which will cost up to $35 Billion to treat for the remainder of their lives. At a time when our country needs to cowboy up and help these soldiers, we learn that just the opposite is happening.

In an email dated March 20th 2008, a VA Psychologist in charge of PTSD services in Temple Texas advised her staff to stop diagnosing veterans with PTSD to save money. She also announced she would disband a dozen or so PTSD therapy groups. They are opting to use a more convenient (read: less expensive), albeit wildly ambiguous diagnosis of: Adjustment Disorder.

This is not a referendum on war and certainly not on the role of our all volunteer soldiers in supporting the war. Our society is full of people that claim to be patriots. Today, Memorial Day, is another golden - and simple - opportunity to prove just that.

Let's encourage each other to observe a moment of silence at 3pm for those that have been lost...and then follow it up with a chorus of loud voices demanding better care for our returning servicemen and women so we don't lose anymore.

16 January 2009

Adios Amigo

Who watched the President say farewell to the nation last night? Not many it seems.

This morning's arm chair quarterbacks are criticizing him or underplaying his description of the troubled economy and for overplaying his role in the war. Of course they are in the news-selling business so it would be expecting too much for them to just be "okay" with whatever the soon-to-be-former President said, right? Advocates for and against are weighing in on what he said and didn't say in his farewell remarks. Because that is what advocates do you know.

I am reminded of one of my own coming-to-age moments when former President Reagan left office after 8 years and was also lambasted for his absentee mention of the Iran-Contra Affair and other less than glorious aspects of his presidency. My takeaway was that it was his story, and when people get to tell their own story, seldom will they allow it to be dominated by their shortcomings or perceived failures. I don't recall former President Clinton's farewell, but I am certain that it did not include a, uh, blow by blow account of the Monica Lewinsky incident.

I didn't always agree with Bush, but sometimes I did. He earned my vote twice in part because no other party could present a candidate that could convince me of enough of anything that was important to me and in part because Bush did less pandering while being more in line with some - but not all - of my core interests.

One of his strongest attributes was also one of his most criticized. He was often down right unapologetic when he made a leadership decision. And many people hated that about him. They wanted him to waver, to succumb, to reflect a position more like their own, of course. And in a society where we are used to complaining to get our way from pandering leaders, his approach to leadership was not very well received.

"No good decision was ever made in a swivel chair." - George S. Patton

President Bush did not curry enough favor among the politicos though to be an effective politician and his record will surely reflect that. Only the shadow knows what the long term effects of his leadership will reveal but having more than a superficial understanding of security matters, I am confident that among other things, the my family was much safer under Bush's leadership than anyone else's. Many will of course predictably disagree.

So now we begin a new presidential chapter, in which the same people who scream for EQUALITY and the now the same ones screaming how SPECIAL Obama's presidency is because he is, you know, black. A disturbingly ridiculous irony that I look forward to our nation getting past. (Yeah right). President Obama has lots of work to do and he should get busy while he is still popular.

As my President, he will also have my support and I hope his administration does well.

And when it is his time to go, let's not be surprised if he does not demonstrate too much contrition, okay?

14 January 2009

Telephones are Absurd

"This 'telephone' has too many shortcomings to be seriously considered as a means of communication."
Western Union memo, 1876

Not only did the landline telephone revolutionize communication after being patented by Alexander Graham Bell in 1876, a recent study now reveals that 3 out of 10 people receive all of their telephone calls on their cell phone and nearly 8 out 10 of all Americans carry a cell phone.

After all, almost 20% of US households only have cellphones, with no landlines whatsoever. That marks a 2% increase since last year. Aren't we glad some people embraced innovation?

The National Health Interview Survey, conducted by the CDC also found that:

  • Low-income people are likelier than the more affluent to have only cell phones.

  • About a third of those under age 30 only have cell phones.

  • Households with both cell and landline phones who rarely or never get calls on their landlines tend to be better educated and have higher incomes.

  • About 2 percent of households reported having no telephones.

How was this information gathered? In person of course, since pollsters are largely prohibited by federal law to call cell phones unsolicited. Such irony.

So what is up with those sage prognosticators at Western Union these days? As can be predicted, companies that take such a narrow view of innovation do not progress too far. I find it remarkable that the company with virtually the only means of communication since 1851 (telegrams) and the industrialized monopoly to go with it, did not parlay that market presence into the next generation of communication. It was their game to lose. And of course lose out they did. After hemorrhaging money and gathering debt for years due to their continued investment in under performing businesses, they shuttered all of their interests and started focusing on sending money out of the country. Remember their ad?: "The fastest way to send money...worldwide".

They crept their original mission of relaying messages between faraway people in faraway places to relaying money between faraway people in faraway places. Or more specifically, between the US and Central America.

Western Union currently does about $4 Billion US in revenue each year. As mentioned, The bulk of that is from remittances from the US back to Mexico. US citizens can therefore be assured that Western Union is actively or passively lobbying to keep illegal aliens alive and well in this country. In fact they proudly boast the following:

"Our citizenship efforts help to amplify the impact of remittances, a powerful force for social good".

Whose "social good" though? If you are in Mexico, you love what Western Union does because they bring money (remittances) into your country faster. If you are a host country, then it is insane to think that funnelling money out of your society without reciprocity is a good thing. And even some of their very own remittance sending patrons agree. In late 2007, an immigrant rights group initiated a boycott against Western Union claiming that they were be charged too much to send their money back home.

To make nice and to protect their nut, Western Union established several grant programs whereby they are "devoted to empowering the people and communities we serve". While their community programs are purported to being worldwide, each of their reported community partnerships consist of Mexican interests. They even give money to an organization in Mexico that helps Mexicans start their own business. Really?? Look no further than the Billions of dollars in US to Mexico remittances as the source of capital for these Mexican start-ups.

Global citizenship is important, without a doubt. Let's just not be fooled however by the self sustaining, self serving methods of companies like Western Union who are doing more to erode our country's infrastructure than they are in strengthening it.

Let's recap this trail of Absurdity: An American Company, who should have been out of business years ago, is now solely focused on expediting US currency out of this country, which hurts our economy and reinforces illegal immigration (and yes permissible and legal immigration too). The immigrants (legal and illegal) have now banded together to demand the right to not pay too much to this American company so they can send even more money back to their home country. The company acquiesced and not only lowered their money transfer rates but also is now sending some of their own corporate foundation money to these foreign countries to help build their infrastructure and to increase the demand for more remittances. Wow!

Viva la Free Enterprise!