Monday, November 30, 2015

Mixed Emotions

John Brown

Robert Dear
  There is a joke that goes like this. What is the definition of mixed emotions? Watching your mother-in-law drive off a cliff in your brand new Cadillac. I have always had mixed emotions whenever I hear of an abortion clinic bombing. A shooting, such as in the case of the attack by Robert Dear on a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs this past Friday. Or the occasional murder of an abortion doctor. On the one hand I realize that in a civilized society we must condemn the acts of individuals who take the law into their own hands. Over the period of two days, October 16 to 18th 1859, abolitionist John Brown led 22 men in an attack on the Federal arsenal at Harpers Ferry Virginia, which is now West Virginia. His intention was to start a slave insurrection that he hoped would spread across the South. Colonel Robert E. Lee and JEB Stuart, who were United States Army officers at the time, were called in to organize a raid on the arsenal, by a detachment of Marines. Lee's men killed 10 of Brown's men and captured 7, including a severely injured Brown. Five men were able to escape. One Marine was killed and one wounded, along with an unknown number of Virginia state militia. Brown would be tried in a trial in which he was brought into court on a stretcher. He was convicted of treason against the state of Virginia and hanged in the present day city of Charleston West Virginia. John Wilkes Booth would be on hand to witness the execution.

  I have always had mixed emotions about John Brown. His cause was just but his methods were wrong. Slavery was the law of the land in 1859. Abortion is the law of the land today. Martin Luther King wrote that unjust law is no law at all in his famous letter from the Birmingham jail in 1963. He also said that law that is not in harmony with moral law is unjust. When I visited the museum at Harpers Ferry arsenal in 2005 I read that many people considered John Brown to be a hero. Brown and 6 of his followers hacked 5 unarmed pro-slavery men to death on the banks of Pottawatomie creek Kansas with broad swords on May 24th 1856. I know very little about Robert Dear. In his mug shot he looks crazy. John Brown looks crazy in the pictures taken before the attack on Harper's Ferry Virginia. Brown hated slavery and was trying to instigate a slave rebellion. We really don't know what was driving Robert Dear. Pro abortion advocates are pushing the narrative that the recent revelations and videos about Planned Parenthood's selling of body parts were Dears motivation for attacking Planned Parenthood. It has been revealed that he had registered to vote Democratic as a woman and has been arrested numerous times for various charges including such things as being a peeping Tom and cruelty to animals. For the sake of argument let's assume that Dear was anti-abortion. As Hillary might say, what difference does it make? John Brown was an abolitionist but most abolitionists never killed anybody. Most people who are pro-life have never killed anybody and never will. The left wants to acknowledge a link between anti-abortion rhetoric, which is based on fact, with an attack on Planned Parenthood. They refuse to acknowledge a link by the race baiting talk of Al Sharpton, Eric Holder and Barack Obama to the recent acts of violence against white police officers and white people in this country.  

  Both slavery and abortion are similar in the sense that it is easier to enslave someone or kill people if you first deprive them of their humanity. During slavery many white people came to believe that slaves were less than human. Many even believed that they did not have a soul. John Locke in his Second Treatise of government declared that chattel slaves were not included when he said that all men are created equal with certain inalienable rights. Jefferson on the other hand was including slaves when he wrote these words in the Declaration of Independence. By the time of the Civil War slaves were a much more valuable commodity to the slave owner than they were in Jefferson's day. This was because of King Cotton and the invention of the cotton gin. You cannot justify holding a man in slavery if he is human and has a soul. The abortionists refuse to think of an unborn baby as human. It is a fetus or a piece of tissue. The baby's body parts are of more value to the abortionists than the baby. Calling it a fetus is a way of denying it's humanity. Making it easier to kill. The Germans made propaganda films before the holocaust depicting Jews as rats and cockroaches. It is easier to kill a rat or cockroach than a human. 

  If I saw a person put a gun to the head of a two week old baby and I killed that person in order to save the baby, most people, even those who are pro abortion, would call me a hero. Watching the videos of Planned Parenthood employees casually eating and sipping wine while discussing the sale of baby body parts was like watching a scene from Schindler's list. The only way that I can rationalize my dilemma is that if I am pro-life then all lives are important. Even the lives of the abortionists. I commend Garrett Swasey, the police officer who gave his life trying to protect the people at Planned Parenthood. It is my understanding that he was against abortion but he gave his life protecting others. If I refuse to value all life then I am no better than those that casually take life. I can't help having mixed emotions but all people that are pro-life must condemn the actions of Robert Dear if they are going to be consistent. I am inclined to believe that Dear was simply mentally ill and was not an anti abortion advocate. The rest of us who are pro-life should never give up the fight to stop the holocaust that is going on in this country's abortion clinics. Over fifty million babies have died since the Roe vs. Wade decision in 1973. A decision that made abortion legal through all nine months of pregnancy. Polls show that most Americans agree that this is wrong. 

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Obama - Jimmy Carter On Steroids


  When Obama was elected in 2008 people would ask me, Greg, what kind of a president do you think he will be?  "Jimmy Carter on steroids" was my reply. I was only partially right. Like Carter, Obama has destabilized the balance of power in the world. Carter allowed Iran to fall to a radical Islamic regime, which released the plague of radical Islamic Jihad on the world since that time. Iran was a sign to the radical Islam that their time had come. It has been on the rise ever since. Before Iran fell I never knew that there was such a thing as radical Islam. Obama has destabilized the world in an even more dangerous and insidious way. Before his election in 2008 he tipped his hand to what kind of president that he was going to be. He traveled to Kenya and spoke at campaign rallies in support of the radical Muslim candidate for president named Raila Odinga. He wanted to establish a fundamental Islamic regime and to establish Sharia law in Kenya. Obama did nothing to support the Democratic movement in Iran that was brutally repressed by the radical Islamic regime after his election in 2008. Obama did everything that he could to support the Arab Spring movement across the Middle East that was driven by radical Islam. He allowed a long established friend of the United States, Hosni Mubarek, to be overthrown by the Muslim Brotherhood. The same people who assassinated one of the few real Muslim statesmen in 1981, Anwar Sadat. Mubarek and the Shah of Iran were brutal dictators but they didn't hold a candle to the the radical Islamic thugs that have taken their place. Obama supported the radical Muslim Mohamed Morsi, but was angered when the Egyptian people in their better judgement threw Morsi out. Wisely they chose Abdel Fattah el-Sisi who appears at first glance to be a statesmen on the order of Sadat. Although Obama killed Osama Bin Laden and individual terrorists in drone strikes, he has half heartedly gone after ISIS. A mythical climate change is a bigger threat in his mind. After the recent Paris attacks, incredibly U.S. planes were ordered to drop leaflets warning the ISIS fuel truck drivers to flee before the planes were allowed to destroy the fuel trucks. Obama created ISIS by pulling out of Iraq in 2011 creating a vacuum for them to fill. In addition he negotiated a sweetheart Nuclear deal with Iran. Donating one hundred and fifty billion dollars to the Iranian terror program that I am sure will kill more Americans and further destabilizes the worlds security.

  Another way that Obama has been like Carter is that he is seen as weak by world leaders. Putin has tested him in the Ukraine and Syria. He has also resumed the old Soviet Union tactic of testing our air defenses and buzzing our ships with aircraft. China is testing us in the south China sea. As a result of Carters perceived weakness the Soviets invaded Afghanistan in 1979. This is where Obama and Carter part company however. The takeover of our embassy in Tehran in 1979 by radical Muslim extremists and the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan shook Carter to his core. Overnight Carter changed from a dove to a hawk. He proposed a huge jump in defense spending and drew a line in the sand with the Soviet Union. He warned them that it would mean war if they made any moves toward the Persian Gulf. Many of the weapon systems that were later used in the 1st Gulf War, Afghanistan and Operation Iraqi Freedom were developed under the Carter Administration. The Bradley armored personnel carrier, the F-16 fighter, the A-10 Warthog, and the M1 Abrams tank for example. This change in attitude came too late for Carter. He was defeated by Reagan in 1980 and suffered the embarrassment of seeing the Iranian American embassy hostages released after Reagan took the oath of office. It is my opinion that the Soviet Union wouldn't have invaded Afghanistan if Reagan had been president. Carter represented the naivete of the Democratic Party in foreign policy when it came to dealing with the Soviet Union. This is why I voted against McGovern in 1972 and one of the many reasons that I have voted against every Democratic candidate from Walter Mondale to Barack Obama since. Carters human rights approach of not interfering with the internal affairs of a sovereign nation such as Iran was seen as weakness in the Soviet Union. Obama on the other hand has had no such epiphany. He continues to show weakness on the world stage. When France of all countries is showing more leadership and spine against Islamic terror than the United States you know that the world has been turned upside down. Carters foreign policy was based on a dangerous naivete and incompetence. There is something sinister and intentional about Obama's foreign policy however and there is no incompetence here. He knows exactly what he is doing and is following a plan. In my opinion his goal is to marginalize the role of the United States in the world. Why, I don't really know. Who knows if he is a radical Muslim or not. At the very least he is a radical Muslim sympathizer. I have theories, but one day I think the full truth will be exposed.

   I was a Democrat in the 1970's and voted for Carter twice in 1976 and 1980. As much as I dislike Carter today and the negative impact that he had on the world he did do one thing that was very positive and it had a strategic impact on the future of the Middle East. On March 26, 1979 Egypt and Israel signed a peace treaty that the lions share of the credit can be given to Carter. Israel and the Arab countries had fought regular wars since the establishment of the state of Israel in 1948. There had been a war in 1948, 56, 67, and 73. The 1973 war was very hard on Israel from the standpoint of casualties, and the loss of military hardware. The war nearly led to a big power confrontation between the Soviet Union and the United States. This peace treaty took Egypt out of any potential Arab alignments in the future. Arab countries like Jordan, Syria and Iraq would not go to war against Israel without Egypt taking the lead in a coalition. Egypt was the strongest and wealthiest of the Arab states. After the 1979 Egypt-Israeli peace treaty there has been no major Arab-Israeli war since that time. This peace treaty cost Anwar Sadat his life. The Muslim Brotherhood killed him for daring to make a peace treaty with the infidel Jews. Obama threatened the stability of this treaty by supporting the radical Morsi during the Arab Spring uprising. Luckily the Egyptian people had the good sense to overthrow Morsi and replace him with the Sadat like el Sisi. Much to Obama's displeasure. There is a great possibility that Morsi would have revoked the treaty.

  I don't believe that it was ever the goal of the Founding Fathers to create a government and country that was in agreement all the time. They wanted checks and balances that would hold power in check. This was to avoid the tyranny that they were forced to rebel against in 1775. The ultimate danger that we face today is that we have a president that is a tyrant and there is no opposition party. This situation is compounded by having a court system that is out of control. The Founding Fathers would be very disappointed with things as they stand today. Obama has created chaos everywhere. His foreign policy is chaotic. On the home front he has created chaos by creating phony wars. A war between the races at a time that we should be well along on the road to racial healing. He has set us back fifty years. Obama perpetuates a war between the sexes and a class war between the rich and poor. Obama has created chaos in our economic system by more doubling our deficit, The tragedy of the Obama presidency is he has squandered the opportunity as our first black president to leave America better off than he found it. Instead he has been a slave to a flawed ideology, whatever that might be. This will be the legacy of Barack Hussein Obama.  

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Growing Up In Historic Edgefield

  Although I have always been a student of history I was ignorant of the historic significance of Edgefield when I was dating my wife Debbie in the 1960's. It was probably after her father sold the old house at 915 Boscobel street in the early 1990's that I became fully aware of it's rich history. I didn't know that Edgefield was the Belle Meade of Nashville in the 1800's and remained so until the great East Nashville fire of 1916. Edgefield was part of a large plantation owned by the prominent Nashville physician Dr. John Shelby in the early 1800's. He built two mansions called Fatherland and Boscobel for each of his daughters. During the Civil War General Albert Sidney Johnston established his headquarters in Edgefield after the fall of Forts Henry and Donelson.  The Union army occupied Edgefield after the retreat of the Confederate army and the burning of the suspension and railroad bridges across the Cumberland. Nashville Mayor Richard Cheatham was rowed across the Cumberland to surrender Nashville to Union Colonel John Kennett on February 25th 1862. The surrender took place in the home of Charles A. Fuller. Cheatham was hoping to prevent the destruction of the city by the Union army. During the war a large Union encampment was in the area of the Titans stadium today and the railroad bridge was rebuilt and fortified. Troops must have been stationed on the hill near present day tenth and Shelby because Civil War relics have been found in the area.
I am sitting about where the man on the top picture is sitting

  After the war many prominent homes were built throughout the area that once made up the Shelby plantation, After the failed Northfield Minnesota bank robbery attempt on September 7, 1876 the entire Younger - James gang was killed or captured with the exception of Frank and Jesse James. They made their way to Edgefield where they hid out. They became respectable citizens for a few years. Jesse James lived at 606 Boscobel Street and 711 Fatherland Street. Frank James had a farm near Whites Creek. The East Nashville fire of March 22, 1916 destroyed over 600 homes and caused 1,500,000 in damage, which in 1916 dollars was a lot of money. After the fire the wealthy citizens of Edgefield began migrating to Belle Meade in west Nashville. The area began to deteriorate socioeconomically. More and more working class people began moving into the area. By WW2 many of the beautiful old homes were being rented out or subdivided into apartments. This was the Edgefield that I remember.
The charred ruins left after the East Nashville fire of 1916
Ruins of East Nashville in 1916

Graduation day

  When I began dating Debbie in 1966 her house had been remodeled. She lived in that house from the time she was born in 1950 until we married in 1968. After my discharge from the Air Force we regularly visited until her dad moved in the early 1990's. The house was built sometime after the Civil War. Her parents lowered the ceilings, paneled the walls and removed the ornate woodwork on the front of the house. In the last twenty years or so a wealthier class of people have been moving back into the neighborhood. They have been restoring the old homes. A few years ago we took the historic Edgefield tour and was blown away by the grandeur of some of these old homes. One home we toured had a third floor ballroom. Debbie bought a history book about Edgefield and to my surprise I found a picture of Debbie's house at 915 Boscobel St. in 1906. The picture was taken from the front yard of 916 Boscobel St. which was the house where her best friend Carolyn Robinson grew up across the street.
Debbie's house at 915 Boscobel St. in 1998
Jesse James house at 606 Boscobel which no longer exists
Jesse James house at 711 Fatherland St.

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Saturday, November 21, 2015

Tragedy In South Carolina - The Death of Thirty Five Tennessee Air National Guardsman- July 23, 1950

 On Sunday July 23, 1950 a C-46 transport plane flying airmen of the Tennessee Air National Guard crashed shortly after take off from Myrtle Beach AFB South Carolina. The crash killed 35 Guardsmen and 4 crewmen from an Air Force Reserve unit in West Palm Beach Florida. Most Nashvillian's my age or younger have probably never heard of this story. A buddy in my Guard unit told me about it on a drill weekend. It was the worst air disaster in the history of the Air National Guard. Nashville has had it's share of disasters. During the Civil War hundreds of free blacks and slaves were rounded up off of the streets of Nashville to build fortifications just after the Union army captured the city. It is estimated that over 800 black men died of exposure while building Ft. Negley. An atrocity committed by the Union army that is not highly publicized in the history books. There were many cholera epidemics in Nashville during the 1800's. The epidemic of 1849 took the life of President James K. Polk. In 1866 over 800 Nashvillian's died as the result of a cholera epidemic. The Spanish flu pandemic of 1918-19 killed over 1300 Nashvillian's. Most of these were at the Dupont plant in Old Hickory. These disasters took place over a period of weeks and months however.The sudden death of so many young men shook Nashville to it's core.

   In July 1950 I was four months old and the Korean war was about three weeks old when men of the Tennessee Air National Guard arrived in Myrtle Beach South Carolina to pull their two week summer camp. I know very few details of this tragedy other than what I have read in several newspaper articles. Today I was in Nashville with a little time on my hands and I dropped by the Nashville room of the main public library. Information about this crash is not available on the internet. The librarians brought out a stuffed yellow envelope crammed full of very fragile 65 year old articles clipped from the Tennessean. Myrtle Beach Air Force Base was opened in 1940 just before World War Two and was closed in 1993. There was at least one other plane taking men home to Nashville. One man decided not to board the doomed airplane and his mother, Mrs. H.R. Hayes, was relieved to find out that her son Sgt. Wallace Hayes was alive. A farmer in Conway South Carolina, only 14 miles from Myrtle Beach, saw the plane fly over his farm. He said "I was standing in the yard of the farm I own about six miles from the crash when the plane came over. While I looked at it, a piece of the tail suddenly flew off and the plane started spinning toward the ground. It made about three revolutions before it hit. Then it exploded, shooting flames a great distance into the air". Air Force officers said that the plane was carrying over 1000 gallons of fuel. This description reminds me of the F-104 fighter that crashed while I was working an air show in Germany in 1983. I saw the fighter go into a flat spin and it exploded into a giant fireball when it hit the ground. Five people died in a car on the autobahn and several people were severely burned in a parking lot.

Myrtle AFB from the air

A woman is comforted after finding out that her brother is dead
Families waiting for news of their loved ones

  The wreckage of the C-46 was piled 6 feet high and buried more than 10 feet deep. The bodies were trapped in the twisted wreckage. About half  of the men were 17 years old and a few were still in high school. One boy joined the Guard by lying about his age when he was fifteen years old. Most of the remaining men were in their early 20's. The oldest was a 27 year old sergeant. Some were married, leaving behind young wives and children. At first it was thought that 30 Guardsmen had died but 5 more bodies were later found in the wreckage. I attended the military funeral of my wife's Uncle Jessie. He was a twenty year veteran of WW2. The funeral was at Nashville's National Cemetery on Gallatin road. I just happened to look down at my feet and I was standing next to several mass graves holding the remains of some of the men killed in the crash. Apparently many of the men were unable to be identified. This crash illustrates the fact that it makes no difference how you die. When a person joins the military they hand the government a blank check. They swear an oath to serve their country in whatever way the government sees fit. Whether they die face down on the Sands of Iwo Jima, a training accident, a terrorist attack, or in a plane crash, they are all equally dead. 
Grave of Billy Shearon

Friday, November 20, 2015

An Old Fashioned Butt Whipping

  On July 1st, 1971 the Twenty-Sixth Amendment to the Constitution was passed granting 18 year olds the right to vote. This Amendment had only been proposed three months earlier making it the fastest Amendment ever passed in American history. The year 1972 was the first election that I voted in and I voted for Nixon. He won the fourth largest landslide in history. I turned 18 on February 28, 1968 and if I could have voted I would have voted for Nixon that year too, Even though I considered myself to be a Democrat at the time. The year 1968 was one of the most important and craziest years of my life. On a personal level it was a happy year for me. I graduated from East High, married my high school sweetheart, joined the Air Force, and discovered that I was going to be a father while in basic training. On a national level the year was absolutely crazy. In January the North Vietnamese launched an all out attack on the Marine base at Khe Sanh. By the beginning of the year there were over 500,000 US troops in Vietnam, the peak of American forces during the war. The Tet Offensive was launched the following month of February which was an all out attack by the Viet Cong on the cities of South Vietnam. Like the Battle of the Bulge in December 1944 American forces were initially surprised but after 48 hours they had the situation well in hand and virtually destroyed the Viet Cong as an effective fighting force. The following paragraph is from a blog called the National Interest. Tet had been a desperation move by North Vietnam, beset by a relentless American killing machine. and the Allied response was awesome. The communists lost ten thousand men in the first few days of the offensive, compared to 249 Americans dead and five hundred South Vietnamese. Overall, throughout the months-long battle, the communists lost nearly forty-eight thousand men. The North Vietnamese had sought to deliver the decisive military blow that would knock the Americans out of the region. They failed.
Cronkite in Vietnam

  The media reported Tet as a defeat for US forces. Their bias wasn't that much different even back then. Walter Cronkite declared the war unwinnable. Supposedly Johnson said if he had lost Cronkite he had lost the American people, but I have read recently that he probably didn't say that. On March 31st Johnson surprised me and the country when he said "I shall not seek, and I will not accept, the nomination of my party for another term as your president," I never saw it coming. Personally I thought that Johnson could have been reelected at that time and I still think so. He was the ultimate politician. At the time I would have probably voted for him if I could have voted. Now I have the view that Johnson was responsible for setting in motion the political chaos that we have today. Johnson's dropping out of the race opened the field to his Vice President Hubert Humphrey. Robert Kennedy, and Eugene McCarthy were also in the race on the Democratic side. George Wallace ran as a third party candidate. Richard Nixon ran as the Republican candidate on a law and order ticket. He was also making the promise that he would bring about peace with honor in Vietnam. Nixon was not offering a specific plan to end the war. His law and order platform was popular with the silent majority. We were tired of the chaos on college campuses and in the streets by the radical elements of the anti-war movement. Much of which was communist inspired. The civil rights movement was moving in a more militant direction with the rise of the Black Panther movement and radicals like H. Rap Brown and Stokely Carmichael.

Hubert Humphrey

  On April 4th 1968 Martin Luther King was assassinated in Memphis. I was working at Plant#2 Baird-Ward printing company when someone told me that King had been shot. I felt sorry for the black guys working there. Some of our more redneck white workers were happy about it and excited. Before we heard the official news of his death they were saying things like, "I hope the son of a bitch dies". Riots were breaking out all over America and cities were burning. There were riots in Nashville and Memphis. For several days Nashville was placed under a curfew from 6:00 PM till dawn. The only people allowed on the streets were people like myself driving to and from work. National Guard tanks, vehicles and troops along with a horde of Metro and State police patrolled the streets. For the first time in it's history the Grand Ole Opry was cancelled that weekend. A few weeks later on June 6th, 1968. the night of our graduation, Robert Kennedy was shot on the campaign trail in California. He died the next day. Again I was at work when I heard the news. I worked the 2nd shift at Baird-Ward and got off at 11:00 PM. On my way home the DJ kept saying over and over that he had died because we were a violent country. Although I didn't realize it then I had the heart of a conservative. I resented the insinuation that somehow we were all guilty for the death of Robert Kennedy. I wasn't violent and most Americans weren't violent. John Kennedy, Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy had all been killed by lone misfits as far as we knew then. 

  While I was in basic training at Lackland AFB Texas riots broke out at the Democratic National convention and the police were charged with police brutality. The rioters were violent, rock throwing radicals called Yippies. While I was in Texas the Soviets invaded Czechoslovakia. At the end of training I received my orders to Kingsley Field Oregon arriving there with my wife Debbie in October 1968 just before the presidential election. I was very interested in politics but I was too busy trying to get settled in to my new job and home life to pay too much attention to the news. We didn't have a car or a television. Debbie was so homesick that she was crying everyday. When we were able to buy very small black and white GE portable there was only one television station in Klamath Falls. The election of Nixon in November was kind of a blur to me. Nixon was elected with 43.4% of the vote and 301 electoral votes. Hubert Humphrey had 42.7%. and 191 electoral votes. George Wallace ran as an independent third party candidate in the American Independent Party. He garnered 13.5% of the vote and 46 electoral votes. Humphrey was gaining on Nixon in the latter weeks of the campaign but just ran out of time. Humphrey was a Northern liberal with progressive views on race. By today's standards of liberalism Humphrey would probably classify as a moderate. He was too closely tied to Johnson's failed Vietnam policy however. Wallace also ran on a conservative law and order platform. It is safe to say that if Wallace had not run that year Nixon would have won by a landslide. Most of Wallace's votes should have gone to Nixon.
George Wallace

  The demographics of today have changed quite a bit from that of 1968. We have many more people dependent on government today. The country is not nearly as white and homogeneous. Although I am vastly more fearful for our country today than in 1968, I see some similarities between this election and the 68 election. People were afraid in 1968 and they didn't like the path we were on as a country. They were tired of the chaos and uncertainty. The Democratic Party was a vastly different party then. It had conservative, moderate, and liberal wings. Over the next four years the Saul Alinsky trained radicals that were rioting in the streets of Chicago had taken over much of the machinery of the party. The party has progressively become more radicalized over the years. People are even more scared today. We realize that America has been headed down the wrong path for a long time now. There is worry about our financial future and the future of our children and grandchildren. There is an out of control deficit and anemic economic growth. There is chaos caused by the Black Lives matter movement against our police and on our college campuses. This has been a false crisis created by Obama and the race merchants on the left. A disastrous foreign policy which has created and strengthened Islamic terrorist groups like ISIS. The build-up and modernization of the Chinese military. In the face of all this we are drawing down our military when we should be building up our military. We have a Congress who refuses to be an opposition party to the tyranny of Obama and a president that instead of leading he does nothing but divide us by race, class and gender. 

  I hate to predict the outcome of elections any more. In 1996 and 2012 I thought surely the American people would wise up and not reelect Clinton and Obama but I was wrong. As a student of history I have read about enemies that because of their hubris overextended themselves. The Germans made the mistake of invading Russia and the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. Germany and Japan ran rampant over their enemies until the allies finally pushed back. Obama and the left have had their way for so long and they have won victory after victory. I sense that they have finally overextended themselves to the point that they are losing elections everywhere. Governors, state legislatures, the Federal House of Representatives and the Senate. They are living in a fantasy world and do not begin to understand the anger that is out here in the real world. There is a leadership vacuum that must be filled. If the Republicans can manage to nominate the right candidate they have the chance to administer an old fashioned butt whipping of historic proportions in 2016.    


Thursday, November 19, 2015

Why Voting For Democratic Socialists Like Bernie Sanders And Hillary Clinton Is A Bad Idea

Bernie Sanders

  Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel (1770-1831) was a German philosopher who was the philosophical mentor of Karl Marx. They never actually knew each other but Marx's Communist philosophy was heavily influenced by Hegel. If you have trouble sleeping at night just try to read Hegel. It is a good cure for insomnia. I don't pretend to know much about philosophy because it is way above my head. Hegel believed that all human history is moving toward an inevitable conclusion. The triumph of reason. I have a big problem with this. Who gets to determine whose reason wins out in the end? Karl Marx took Hegel's philosophy a step further. Human history is moving toward an inevitable conclusion. The triumph of the proletariat. Marx outlined his communistic world view in the Communist Manifesto and Das Kapital. He believed capitalism would fall of it's own weight. It would come about because of capitalism's boom and bust cycles. Reductions of the labor force, depressions, recessions, and disparities between rich and poor. Marx outlined various ways that communists could hasten the collapse of capitalism such as a graduated income tax. We are seeing the tyranny of a graduated income tax today. Governments are able to reward who they want to reward and punish who they want to punish. This is one reason Obama won the presidency in 2012 because the government was auditing conservative groups like the Tea Party. This limited their ability to raise funds for fighting Obama and was a major distraction.  The income tax raises our deficits because it provides a virtually endless money stream for the government to waste.  Unfortunately we have had a graduated income tax since 1913 that was established by the progressives movement.

George Hegel

Karl Marx

  Communism's main goal was for government to control the means of production. All corporations and businesses would be nationalized. Marx did not foresee the progressive changes that would occur across Europe and the United States. Communism never took hold in these countries among the working class. Socialism was a compromise between Communism and Capitalism. The progressive era of the early 1800's in Europe and the late 1800's in America brought about things like the minimum wage, unions, child labor laws, food and drug laws, and anti-trust laws. Socialism came about because Communism was considered too extreme. However Communism was never monolithic. There were many versions of Communism that developed in Western Europe. There were two Communist Union generals in the Civil War who were former Prussian officers during the social upheaval in Germany during the 1840's. They were General August Willich who was captured by the Confederates off Gresham lane during the opening action of the battle of Stones River. Also General Alexander Schimmelfennig who was forced to live in a pig pen for three days in order to escape capture during the battle of Gettysburg. Both officers belonged to a Communist group opposed to Marx. He was the most famous Communist however and he did not advocate violence to bring about a Communist revolution. By 1915 Communists realized that Communism was not taking hold in Western Europe as fast as they would like. This led to the development of political correctness which was to be used as a tool to bring down capitalism because it was and is used to silence opposition.

  The bloodbath of World War 1 began in 1914. Germany was fighting on two fronts. The war became a stalemate in the west and east. However Germany had an ace in the hole in the east. Vladimir Lenin was a Russian Communist living in exile in Munich Germany. By 1917 the war had become unpopular in Russia and Lenin was sent there by the Germans to exploit this discontent. In October 1917 the Communists overthrew the provisional government that had overthrown Czar Nicholas II. By this time Marx was dead but he would have been shocked to learn that Communism had been established in Russia. He hated Russia and expected Communism to win out in the developed countries like France, Germany, England and the United States. Lenin developed a new form of Communism that was committed to violent revolution and directed at the underdeveloped countries of the world. His plan was to surround the developed countries and over time they would naturally fall to Communism. 

  Russia was a living example that Socialism doesn't work. Although it industrialized under communism it was a society always on the brink of poverty and everyone was equally miserable. Only the elites enjoyed anything near a comfortable life. China would have gone the way of Russia if it hadn't converted over to a partially capitalistic society. Lenin stated that as long as there is a capitalist alive there would always be a Soviet Union. Capitalism helped maintain communism in Russia for many years. Nixon's Detente policy was a prime example. America sold wheat to Russia at bargain basement prices, creating shortages in this country, which sustained the Soviet Union while they continued to build their military. Reagan always opposed this policy. He was able to bring down the Soviet Union by forcing their leaders to decide between feeding their people or sustaining their military. The Soviet Union was headed for the ash heap of history anyway. Reagan just gave them a big push over the edge.

  Europe has adopted many socialistic policies over the years but they tend to have high unemployment rates and weaker economic growth. Because of Socialism in England it was on the verge of bankruptcy when Margaret Thatcher became Prime Minister in the late 1970's. By establishing Reagan like economic policies such as tax cuts, deregulation, and spending cuts she was able to revitalize the English economy. Many Americans want us to be more like Europe. I prefer the boom and bust cycles to a Keynesian economy that produces anemic economic growth and high unemployment like we have experienced under Obama. When government doesn't tamper with economic downturns we come out of them faster and stronger. Historically most recessions and depressions only last 2 to 3 years. The great depression lasted from 1929 to 1940 only because of government trying to manipulate a recovery with the New Deal. If it had not been for WW2 there is no telling how long the depression would have lasted. We actually have more people out of work or underemployed today than we had during the depression. People are not feeling the misery we had then because of our built-in safety nets and entitlement system. Because of Obama's tampering we have had high unemployment, underemployment. and very anemic growth.

   Ronald Reagan inherited the worst economic crisis since the great depression. He had to deal not only with high unemployment, but extremely high inflation and interest rates. An oil shortage and the decline of heavy industry in the North such as the American car and steel industry. Reagan's economic plan of cutting marginal tax rates, deregulation of business, and monitoring our currency ended the recession by the Fall of 1982 and spurred the longest period of sustained economic growth in American history. It lasted from 1982 until the housing market crash of 2007. Bill Clinton benefited the most from this economic growth cycle. He also had the added benefit of the so-called peace dividend. The end of the Cold War allowed Clinton to drastically cut the military which can also be credited to Ronald Reagan. The decrease in military spending and a robust economy allowed Clinton to build somewhat of a surplus. Clinton was also helped by the passage of the Welfare Reform Act by the Republican Congress just before the 1996 election. He was forced to sign this into law in order to be reelected..

  Much propaganda has been written about the so-called "Robber Barons" that were prominent after the Civil War. John D. Rockefeller, J.P. Morgan, Andrew Carnegie, Cornelius Vanderbilt, Henry Flagler and so many others. Liberals for the most part write our history books and set our educational agenda in our secondary schools and higher education. They were called Robber Barons in my eleventh grade history class at East High in 1967-68. Robber Baron is a pejorative term and the very expression of liberal bias. Even then I was being taught class envy and to despise the rich. After a closer look I realize that America would not be where it is today without these men. They, along with a multitude of others, built this country. They built much of our infrastructure. Henry Flagler transformed Florida from a backward, primitive, snake infested wilderness into what it is today, a modern tourist destination. With his own money he built the railroad along the east coast of Florida and eventually extended all the way to Key West. This project was second only to the building of the Panama Canal in scope and size. Rockefeller provided oil at a cheap price to the common man. Before Rockefeller people used the more expensive whale oil to light their lamps. Carnegie provided steel which was stronger than iron at a fair price. Even though these men created monopolies prices remained low., Usually when we think of monopolies we think that they create higher prices. This was not the case. J.P. Morgan on two different occasions saved the Federal government from going bankrupt by using his own money.

  You cannot redistribute wealth to the less fortunate unless someone first creates wealth. Workers during this time were paid very low wages. Were living in slums, working ungodly hours in factories. and there was child labor. Various reforms that have come about over the years in the workplace have been needed to make things more equitable. To a point this is the proper role of government. It is to act as a referee in order to provide a fair and safe environment for workers. The government should break up monopolies because a monopoly violates the principles of Adam Smith's view of capitalism. He believed that capitalism should be a moral system that benefits everyone from the top down. Crony capitalism is not true capitalism. When government and business join forces this leads to inefficiency, waste and corruption. We saw this in the building of the Union Pacific and Central Pacific railroads after the Civil War. Now we are seeing it with the government bail outs and tampering with such corporations as General Motors, General Electric and Bank of America. 

  In addition the proper role of government is to assist people during a disaster. If a massive earthquake strikes the New Madrid fault, which it will one day, and causes massive devastation, the government should provide housing, food, water and security to the survivors until the communities are rebuilt and people are able to get back on their feet. More than likely Christian and religious organizations will be there before the government can fully respond. The same should be the case in an economic disaster. The government should never tamper unnecessarily with the economy. There should be no bail outs. There is nothing too big to fail. All vacuums will be filled eventually by the entrepreneurial spirit of the American people. Government should provide for people who are devastated by an economic disaster. When the crisis is past then people should provide for themselves. It is not the role of government to destroy the work ethic of the American people. There are the chronically ill or mentally challenged that can't work and they may need assistance. Most people shouldn't however.

  Nations cannot create wealth. They can confiscate it from their citizens in the form of taxation or they can take it from other countries like England did during the colonial era. This kind of economy was called the mercantile system. It was one of the main reasons that America rebelled against England. We were forced to trade with England or those countries that they allowed us to trade with. If the Colonists traded with anyone not approved of by England they could be imprisoned for smuggling. We were forced to choose their friends and their enemies. The Boston Tea Party came about because England was trying to force Americans to buy and use English tea from the East India Company exclusively. England lowered the taxes on tea in an attempt to undercut the smugglers. In addition the colonists resented the English taxing us without colonial representation in Parliament. Under the mercantile system a nations economic strength was determined by whatever wealth they could accrue. England was a have not nation. It was small and there were few raw materials. This is one reason that they built the strongest navy and army in the world. During the colonial period England would conquer a country and over time take their wealth and raw materials. 

  On my last trip to London in 1990 we toured the huge bank vault at the Tower of London holding the Crown Jewels. I am sure that a great deal of this wealth was taken from England's colonies over the years. America was probably luckier than most of England's colonies, but the mercantile system was an onerous system. Scotland was treated like England's red headed step child. Adam Smith, the great Scottish economist, who wrote the Wealth of Nations, saw first hand how Scotland was transformed. From a poor, underprivileged country under the mercantile system into a thriving economy under free market capitalism. By the time Smith wrote the Wealth of Nations in 1776, England was well on it's way in the transition from the mercantile system to the free market system. It was also the year that we declared our independence from England. In the early years of capitalism there were abuses and gaps between rich and poor. However capitalism has improved the life of the more people than any other economic system hands down. I believe that Obama is a Marxist. Since the passage of Obamacare, the raising of taxes, the expansion of government regulations on business. The growth of entitlements and welfare, Obama has widened the gap between rich and poor unlike any time in modern history. His policies have been devastating for the black community. America has more people out of work today than were out of work during the great depression. We don't feel the pain today because of the safety nets that weren't there during the depression. People were begging to work and would have gladly worked if jobs had been available then. Our system of welfare and entitlements today have created generations of the chronically unemployed who would prefer to stay at home rather than be gainfully employed.

  Debbie (Blabbermouth) Schultz, as Rush Limbaugh calls her, was asked several times what was the difference between a modern day Democrat and a socialist. She never could give a coherent answer because there is no difference. The true socialist such as Marx or Lenin would advocate the nationalization of all industry. The means of production would be controlled by the state and the people would be forced to comply with a socialist lifestyle or face the firing squad. Under so-called Democratic socialism the things that most people are capable of doing for themselves, cheaper and more efficiently will be done by the government. You are forced by law to comply. Like having to buy health insurance whether you want to or not. The producers will be taxed into oblivion in order to spread the wealth and fulfill their big promises. Even more than we are seeing now if Bernie Sanders or Hillary Clinton are elected. As Margaret Thatcher once said, "The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other peoples' money". I also like the saying, When you rob Peter to pay Paul, you will never get an objection out of Paul. This is what happened in Greece. It is a country in bankruptcy today. Under Democratic socialism taxes will continue to rise. The deficit will continue to increase at a phenomenal rate. Entrepreneurship will  be squelched and we will become more and more like Europe with high unemployment and an ever growing anemic economy.

Nurse Ratchett aka Hillary Clinton

  What socialists don't get is that rich people have options. They can protect their money by hoarding or leaving the country. This is what the English were doing before Margaret Thatcher revitalized the British economy. Cronie capitalism and corruption will continue. All of these utopian ideas like providing free college for every young person sounds great but somebody has got to pay for it. Nothing is free. Socialists are patient and they have incrementally chipped away at capitalism for years. For over one hundred years now they have pushed and pushed for nationalized health care. Ultimately their goal is a single payer system and the chaos of Obamacare is designed to push us in that direction. Environmentalism and the climate change hoax is targeting our energy industry.We are moving toward the eventual triumph of reason as Hegel envisioned. But it is their definition of reason not ours. We have to make a good case for the triumph of Conservative reason. It is hard to fight Santa Claus and this is the challenge that Conservatives face. They have to be the adult or the parent that is the bad guy. The father that has the wisdom and courage to say no when the mom says yes or vice versa. However they have to be able to make their case in such terms that people realize that ultimately it is for their own good. Otherwise we are headed for the proverbial financial cliff.


Monday, November 16, 2015

My Plan Of Action To Defeat Islamic Terror

1. Radical Islam is our enemy and has been at war with us for a very long time. Since the beginning of our country. If you don't believe me, read a book called (From The Shores Of Tripoli). It is about Thomas Jefferson, the US Navy, the US Marines and the fight against the Barbary Pirates. 

2. Islam is not a religion of peace. The people who are trying to kill us are going by the Quran. Read the book. The reason most Muslims are good people is because they are not living by the book. Radical Islam's goal is a world wide caliphate. If you are an atheist, agnostic, Buddhist, Hindu, Christian, or Jew you are a heretic and are a target. During the Ottoman Empire Christians and Jews were tolerated if they submitted to the authority of the Muslim state. They were considered people of the book. This is not the case today. Modern day Muslims consider Christian's and Jews to be heretics because we have a false religion. There is only one choice for the heretic. Convert or die.   

2. Most Muslims are good people but most terrorists are Muslim. The good Muslims are irrelevant because they cannot or will not stop terrorism. Just like most Germans were good people but they didn't stop Hitler. Most Americans are good people but we allowed Obama to be elected and to get away with blatant violations of the constitution. Therefore we are irrelevant.

3. We cannot win this war by being politically correct. Political correctness must die a violent death if we are to survive as a country. It is time to declare a Jihad on political correctness. 

4. Sharia law must be banned in America, period. See number 3.

5. We must secure our borders immediately. If I have a leaky faucet, I cannot fix the problem until I go to the meter box and turn off the water in my front yard. Stopping this invasion can be done by building walls along both our Mexican and Canadian borders. Also securing our airports and seaports. I don't want to hear that this is impossible. Kennedy said that we were going to put a man on the moon when I was 11 and we did it when I was 19. We had the will to put a man on the moon. In my opinion securing our borders will be easier than putting a man on the moon. Where there is a will there is a way.

6. Once our borders are secured we can set up examination stations all over the United States to vet the people who are here. These stations would serve the same function that Ellis Island served after the turn of the century in clearing immigrants for entry into the United States. If they are carrying dangerous diseases are criminals, drug users, and undesirables they will be deported. If they are potentially productive citizens, who are willing to assimilate into American society, we can allow them to begin the process of becoming American citizens. Many illegals will self deport if we establish heavy fines on employers who hire illegals. Prison sentences if they continue hiring them. Stop all welfare and entitlements going to illegals. If we do this we will not have to deport that many people. We should not allow the Syrian Muslim refugees to migrate to the US. There is no way to adequately vet them. America should implement universal military training. We are at war and every young male should be required to serve two years in the military. Women should be allowed to volunteer. Anyone who wants to be eligible for overseas combat can volunteer for that. Everybody else will be assigned to border duty. God knows that a good dose of order and discipline would benefit many, if not most of our young people.

7. Eliminate gun free zones. Allow people that are qualified to carry concealed in areas that are considered soft targets. I encourage concealed because this would serve a twofold purpose. The bad guy needs to always be kept guessing who is armed. The armed person doesn't need to bring attention to themselves and make an unnecessary target. In addition guns make many people nervous and if guns are out of sight they are out of mind. If businesses insist on maintaining gun free zones they must realize that they will be held financially responsible if they fail to provide adequate armed security in the event that anyone is hurt or killed on their premises by an active shooter or terrorist. Laws should be passed that would make businesses liable for large fines.We must put economic pressure on businesses by boycotting them.

8. Begin an extensive training program on methods of defeating terrorism. To teach people how to look for the warning signs of terrorism and how to prevent an attack before it happens. What to do if there is a terrorist attack. This should be done in schools, social clubs, churches, community organizations and by public service announcements. 

9. America should be the moral leader of the world. We should concentrate on building the best Army, Air Force and Navy. Modernizing our nuclear forces and begin the testing of nuclear weapons. There has not been a test of a nuclear weapon since 1992. Improve our intelligence gathering. America's technological capabilities are such that we will not have to employ much more than special forces such as Air Force Forward Air Controllers and Combat Control teams to support friendly ground forces in the Middle East. Such as the Kurd's for example. 

  I don't expect these things to ever happen but if I were president this would be my plan for defending America. There are going to be more attacks such as what happened in Paris. Sooner or later these type of attacks will happen here. We have already seen many lone wolf attacks such as at Ft. Hood, Chattanooga, and so many other places. It amazes me that 14 years after September 11th 2001 we are still not doing what we need to do to protect the American people. People will continue to die because of the governments incompetence. Bush was calling Islam a religion of peace hijacked by radical Islamic extremists after September 11th. He was wrong. Islam is a violent religion and the terrorists are following a plan of action that is outlined in the Quran. They know exactly what they want and how they want to accomplish their goal of a world wide caliphate. At least Bush went after them and was not afraid to use the words Islamic terrorists. Obama won't even go that far. He and the Democrats wont define who the enemy is and they have no plan of action to fight them. Incredibly they believe that the hoax of climate change is a greater threat to us than Islamic terror. I do not expect Obama to do anything while he is in office and even if a Republican wins in 2016 they will have to make a believer out of me.    

Monday, November 9, 2015

A Veterans Day Tribute To All Air Force Security Policeman

The Army has it's claim to fame;
The Airborne Rangers, the Green Berets.
The world knows the Navy Seals;
Life of Danger, Men of Steel.
The Corps have their elite too;
Recon Patrol, the Proud, the Few.
But when it comes to us, not much is heard;
We're just the Cops who guard the birds.
In Vietnam, through toil and strife,
We gave it all, our hearts, our life.
A page in history, a chapter in time;
We fought for freedom, yours and mine.
We stayed vigilant through cold and rain,
and bear the fatigue, hardship, and pain.
This piece of ground, we will defend,
Side by side `til the bitter end.
So fear not pilot, you can fly all day,
This base is guarded by the Blue Beret.
Author Unknown

  The concept of ABGD or (Air Base Ground Defense) began early in WW2 with the advent of the German Blitzkrieg tactic which overran British air bases. The Royal Air Force had no plan in place to protect them. Winston Churchill devised a plan whereby the RAF would be responsible for air base ground defense. This concept was adopted by the United Sates Army in 1942. Military Police units made up mostly of black soldiers were armed with heavy weapons and tasked to defend American air bases in combat zones. After the war the United States Air Force was created from the Army Air Forces by the National Security Act of 1947. At first Air Force security forces were named the Air Police. They defended American air bases at home and abroad. During the Korean War American bases were virtually ignored by the enemy. This all changed in Vietnam. American bases were regularly attacked starting with the attack on Bien Hoa air base on November 1, 1964. Over the course of time it was discovered that K-9's were instrumental in detecting enemy activity. This was the beginning of the Air Force Security Police K-9 Corps which is one of the best in the world and regularly trains civilian K-9 officers. Ever since Vietnam the Air Force has put more and more emphasis on air base ground defense training. In 1966 the name of the Air Police was changed to Security Police. Finally in 1997 the Security Police was changed to the United States Air Force Security Forces.
Security Police defending Ton Son Nhut Air Force Base during the 1968 Tet Offensive

  I was 17 years old in January 1968 and half way through my senior year at East Nashville High School. The Vietnam war was much in the news with the North Vietnamese assault on the Marine's at Khe Sanh. We didn't know at the time that this was the opening phase of the 1968 Tet Offensive. America was averaging over 500 KIA's (Killed In Action) a week in Vietnam. It was decision time for me. The possibility of being drafted after high school  was real. Debbie and I were getting serious after an on and off again relationship since February of 1966. We planned to marry right after graduation. I had big plans because I wanted to serve in the military and attend school on the G.I. Bill. My generation grew up on the myth that college was the short track to success. On top of this I was a baby boomer. The child of a World War 2 veteran. I grew up listening to inspiring stories of bravery. We were taught how our country rose to super power status as a result of that war. America kicked the butts of two formidable enemies at the same time. The Germans and the Japanese. For a boy from the South it wasn't a matter of if I would join the military but when. Vietnam wasn't my daddy's war. It was much more complicated than that. President Johnson wasn't fighting to win like we did in WW2. For that reason the war was growing more unpopular. Americans were okay with fighting Communism. But not with the way we were doing it. I drove down to the old Federal court house building on Broadway in Nashville. There I talked to an Air Force recruiter who told me me that there was a long waiting list to join the Air Force. I was five months away from graduation but he said that I could enlist in the delayed enlistment program, We graduated on June 6, 1968 in our football stadium.. Debbie and I were married on June 21st and my name came up for induction into the Air Force on August 5th. After a difficult six weeks of basic training at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio Texas I received orders for Kingsley Field Oregon.

  Growing up in the 1950's I watched war movies like the Sands of Iwo Jima, Sgt York, the Fighting 69th, the Longest Day and Pork Chop Hill. We played army and cowboys and indians. I loved playing with toy soldiers and had a Civil War set and a World War 2 set. John Wayne was my hero. Watching reports of the Vietnam War on the afternoon news however brought home the reality of war. As a paperboy I kept up with the death announcements of local boys, some who were not much older than myself, in the daily newspapers. I wanted to serve, but I wasn't John Wayne. My cousin Roy married his childhood sweetheart  which was my second cousin, in the summer of 1967. Calm down people, I know this is the South, but they were both related to me, but not to each other. Roy joined the Air Force a full year before me. He told me that the Air Force was a good branch for a married couple and he was assigned to the Air Force Security Police. His first duty station was at Siskiyou County Airport, which was right on the California - Oregon state line near Mount Shasta. Ironically a year later I was assigned as a Security policeman to Kingsley Field, just 17 miles north of the California line and like Roy I was able to bring Debbie with me. These 18 months were some of our toughest months as a married couple but we made many close friends. They were months of character building and my son Robbie was born on April 19, 1969.

  Debbie and I arrived at Kingsley in October 1968 after a difficult and tortuous ride on a Greyhound bus from Nashville. Our ankles were swollen to twice their size after sitting for so long. Everything we owned was on our backs and in our luggage. I had to sell my Chevy 2 in order to have the money to take Debbie with me. Big mistake. I should have kept the car and lived in the barracks until I could save the money to send for her. You live and learn I guess. We arrived in time to endure one of the worst winters in years. Most Security Policemen pulled 6 weeks of basic training and 6 weeks of Tech School. Then they were sent to their first duty assignment. Because of the critical need for cops, due to the war, I was sent DDA ( Direct Duty Assignment ). I would have to learn my job by OJT, (on the job training). I was a E-2 (Airman) and naturally I pulled the worst posts. Security, whether in the military or civilian life, is one of the most boring and mundane jobs that you can have. Most of our posts were very important however. At Kingsley we were guarding alert F-101's and later F-106's that were uploaded with either heat seeking conventional or tactical nuclear missiles. We also had to man a radar site called Keno.Our base was part of ADC or (Air Defense Command). The mission was to intercept unidentified aircraft, which were usually Russian Bear bombers. They were routinely testing our air defenses over the Pacific Northwest during the height of the Cold War. While at Kingsley I humped aircraft, which was a cop slang for walking post. We were exposed to every kind of weather condition. Ice, snow, sleet, and rain, in the winter and blazing heat in the summer. I have walked post in snow that was above my knees. Occasionally I would luck up and get an inside post on mobile patrol or the nuclear storage site. We were armed, depending on the post, with 38 caliber pistols or an M-2 carbine, since the M-16's were needed in Vietnam. The M-2 was a fully automatic version of the M-1 semi-automatic carbine. 

  While at Kingsley most of the men in my unit were rotating in and out of Vietnam or Thailand. I heard war stories from the returning combat veterans like SSgt Kersee, a black cop from Clarksville Tennessee. He told me how he had to run ammunition from bunker to bunker during the Tet Offensive under fire. Men talked about the frequent rocket and mortar attacks on the various bases and how they would run for their shelters. Occasionally they fought off a perimeter penetration by Viet Cong sappers. I became familiar with the names of Vietnamese bases like Da Nang, Ton Son Nhut, Phan Rang, Bien Hoa and Cam Ranh Bay just to name a few. Cam Ranh Bay was described as a resort area because of the beautiful beach there. It was notable because they never seemed to get hit. While I was at Kingsley my cousin Roy was assigned to Sewart AFB in Smyrna. I thought how lucky can you get? It wasn't long before he got orders for Phan Rang. He was only in country about a month when he fell out of a guard tower breaking his foot. So badly that he had to be sent to a stateside hospital for treatment. Roy had several surgeries and spent a long time in and out of the hospital. Maybe it is a man thing but I began to feel guilty for not pulling my weight in Vietnam. I remember the opening scene of Patton when he was giving a speech to his men in front of a huge American flag. To paraphrase Patton he said that it was a privilege to serve in combat. He went on to say that when your grandchildren ask you what you did in the great World War 2, you won't have to tell them that you shoveled shit in Louisiana. I felt like I was missing out on something big and wanted to volunteer for Vietnam. Debbie was very much against it. Over the years I have told this to many Vietnam veterans and to a man they tell me I was lucky that I didn't go. I didn't miss a thing.. 

   About January 1970 I got orders for TUSLOG Detachment 93, Erhac Turkey. My orders had me leaving the states on May 31,1970 and serving  to May 31st 1971. My year in Turkey was very hot. with a short but cold winter.Temperatures in the summer averaged 125 degrees. Erhac was a Turkish Base and their F-100 fighters were uploaded with our nuclear weapons. It was part of USAAFE or (United States Air Forces In Europe). The place was a rat hole as far as living conditions were concerned.We affectionately called it the (Hog). I was told that the barracks was built around WW1. There was no air conditioning anywhere in the detachment, except for a trailer that passed for our NCO Club. I didn't drink but I spent a lot of time in there enjoying the AC. Everything was in the same building that housed our barracks. Administrative offices, chow hall and billets. For the entire time I was there it was virtually impossible to take a shower in the daytime. There was never enough water pressure until late at night or very early in the morning hours. Many times I would be all soaped up and then the water would turn off. Often I would have to go to work without a shower. We received five full length movies a week that were shown on a bed sheet hanging from the wall in the chow hall. The best movies were repeated on weekends. In our recreation hall we had two pool tables and a ping pong table. 

  There was Doc Swope, a medic that took care of our health problems. For any real emergencies the men had to be airlifted to the big base at Incirlik. The men got one of our nerdy guys really drunk one night as a joke. After they put him to bed he suddenly got sick to his stomach and ran to the latrine. He tripped over a broom and as he was falling he grabbed hold of a heavy steel door which slammed on his finger cutting it off. Doc Swope put his finger in a jar of alcohol on his desk. I was sick with chronic diarrhea for much of that year, falling from 220 lbs to 175 lbs. I blame it on the water. Bottled water wasn't available like it is now. Doc Swope put chlorine in the water but it didn't work in my case. I envy the modern military who are able to talk to their loved ones from anywhere in the world via the Internet or cellphones. We felt very isolated. The mail would come in spurts and was mostly brought in by aircraft and we had no radar system. If there was cloud cover the planes couldn't land and we could go for days and weeks without mail. Debbie would sometimes send me audio tapes of her and Robbie. If I talked to her we had to drive for about 6 hours over treacherous roads across mountains. risking bandits and terrorists. We drove to a radar site at Diyarbikir Turkey and talked on a phone that had a hideous connection during the early morning hours. I was only able to talk to her four times during the year I was there. On one occasion a friend named Garland (Chet) Atkins and myself were shot at on a trip to the nearby city of Malatya. As we were driving down a winding road near a small village we saw two men standing in the middle of the road. One had a rifle. I was driving a ragged International Scout and as we closed in on them they were trying to flag us down. We were off duty and unarmed. Turkey was not a combat zone and we were not allowed to carry weapons off duty. It was near dusk and I was not about to stop so I sped around them. I heard a loud bang and the inside of the vehicle lit up from the muzzle flash of the rifle. Looking over I noticed Garland slumped over in the passenger seat. Fearful that he had been shot I shouted "Chet, are you okay". He looked up and said, "Get the hell out of here". I had the pedal to the metal but we were going up hill and our top speed was about fifty miles per hour in that piece of crap car.

  As we traveled the base at night we had to carry a flashlight with the daily color code. If we encountered Turkish guards, who usually walked in pairs on the road, they challenged us by leveling their rifles at us. By contrast we were trained to challenge at port arms. Because of the nature of our mission at Erhac we had to learn demolition. We were trained with TNT and plastic explosives which was not my favorite training. I would sweat bullets. Especially when I had to crimp blasting caps on to fuses. For safety sake we held them behind our butts so nothing vital would be injured if they blew up. We were also trained to arm nuclear weapons on the ground. Before going stateside most cops received orders for some of the worst bases in the states. As far as duty for a Security Policeman was concerned. They were mostly SAC bases, (Strategic Air Command) at places like Minot North Dakota, Grand Forks North Dakota, or Ellsworth South Dakota. If you were lucky you might get missile silo duty. At least it was out of the weather. The worst case scenario was humping B-52's. It gets mighty cold in the Dakota's in the wintertime. When my orders came in I was going to NORAD or (North American Air Defense Command) in Cheyenne Mountain, Colorado Springs Colorado. This was one of the choices on my dream sheet and needless to say I was ecstatic.  

  After a thirty day leave I packed up the car, and a U-Haul trailer, Debbie, Robbie, my brother Mark and myself headed for Colorado Springs in our 1964 Chevy Impala. I became my brother's legal guardian and he would live with us until he turned 18. NORAD was the most interesting job that I ever had and my year there was easily the happiest of our life. Not long after my arrival I was promoted to SSgt and was assigned to the relief Flight. We had a permanent day shift, swing shift, midnight shift and our shift that rotated relieving all three. We worked 3 swings, 3 midnight shifts, and 3 day shifts, with a 72 hour break before starting the cycle all over again. NORAD was deep inside of Cheyenne Mountain. There were 11 steel buildings mounted on huge springs that acted as shock absorbers in the event of an earthquake or nuclear blast. These buildings were inside of a man made cave. We had a chow hall, surgical suite, BX, barber shop and a water reservoir. We could live for 30 days or more inside the mountain in the event of a nuclear war. There were 2 twenty ton blast doors that we opened one at a time. When we let a group of people in from the outside we would open the outside door, allowing everyone to walk in between the doors. Then we would open the inner door. People waiting to leave would enter and the cycle would be repeated.

Entrance to NORAD

Inside the tunnel

Yours Truly checking our barbers line badge while operating the blast doors at NORAD

The blast doors at NORAD

  In the center of the complex was command post. It was here that we monitored the activity of Soviet ICBM's (Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles), SLBM's (Submarine Launched Ballistic Missiles) and Soviet bombers. Each country had a triad system composed of all three elements. There was a large computer screen in command post showing the North American continent. We could see any planes, ships, or submarines off our coasts, and near our airspace. If we were to detect a real attack a message would be sent to the White House. The president would make the decision to respond. Orders would be sent to SAC (Strategic Air Command). There they would launch our bombers, and ICBM's. The Navy would launch it's SLBM's. It was estimated that we could shoot down two thirds of their bombers but the remaining third was enough to destroy our cities. We had no defense against ICBM's or SLBM's. Our nuclear policy was based on the Kennedy policy of MAD or (Mutually Assured Destruction). Most Democrats felt that we didn't need an anti-ballistic system because this policy was deterrent enough. We also had Space Defense Command which kept up with any threat that might develop from space. Their primary concern was keeping up with the space junk floating in earth orbit. This was from old satellites and missiles that were constantly re-entering our atmosphere. Most of it disintegrated but occasionally large pieces would make it through posing a danger to people on the ground..   

  Because of my appearance and knowledge I was chosen to be the escort for CINC (Commander - In - Chief) NORAD AND Vice CINC NORAD. The CINC was a four star American Air Force general named Seth McKee. The Vice CINC was a Canadian 3 star general whose name escapes me. NORAD is a joint American - Canadian command. There were American and Canadian military serving there, along with every branch of the American military. Whenever the CINC or Vice Cinc came into the complex I was always out ahead of them. I had to know the complex well. Many times there were VIP's such as senators, congressmen, foreign dignitaries, governors and celebrities. I also escorted the tours that were given to civilians that were conducted on a daily basis. My job was to make sure no one strayed away from the group. Because of this job I had the opportunity to hear many national security briefings. These gave me a well rounded education on our Cold War defense posture. Debbie became pregnant almost immediately after I returned from Turkey and after a very difficult pregnancy my oldest daughter Misty was born at the Air Force Academy hospital on March 8, 1972. On May 4th I was discharged from the active duty Air Force. 
General Seth McKee

  Five years later in October 1977 I joined the 118th Airlift Wing of the Tennessee Air National Guard. It was a C-130 unit stationed at Nashville's Berry Field. I received a broad range of experience and training over the 16 years I was in the Guard. We provided security for Air Force One and Two whenever the president or vice president were on the ground in Nashville. We were involved in the security of presidents Reagan and George H. W. Bush. Vice presidents Walter Mondale, Dan Quayle, and Al Gore Jr. There were five overseas deployments while I was there. Germany in 1983. Belgium in 1985, Germany in 1987 which I was unable to deploy, England in 1990 and Hawaii in 1993. Numerous stateside deployments. The Guard was where I received the bulk of my training in air base ground defense. When I was on active duty we would train in Air Base Ground Defense only if we were deploying to Vietnam. In addition we provided security for air shows in Germany and the United States. In October 1980 we provided site security after a fatal crash of one of our C-130's in McMinnville. I am very proud of my career in the Air Force Security Police, which included a very short stint as an Army MP in an Army Reserve unit in Melborne Florida. My service was very modest compared to those men and women who have sacrificed their minds and bodies under combat conditions for their country. When people thank me for my service I feel very humble because I feel blessed to have had the opportunity to serve my country. Although the call to put myself in harms way in the way that America's combat veterans did, never came for me, I feel like I would have done my duty if called upon. On this Veterans Day I would like to honor my branch of service. The United States Air Force Security Forces.     
Security Police longevity badges 

AC-130 Gunships

Crash of F-104 at Rein Main Germany - 1983