Saturday, October 30

Open Letter to President Bush

Dear Mr. President;

I don't think many people understand what you did but I want you to know that my family and I do and that we appreciate it more than I can say.

Most contemporary politicians would put their career before the fate of the nation. You knew, on September 11, 2001, that you could play it safe politically and no one would know. You knew the safe thing to do would be to continue the charade that had been going on for the past decade -- threatening Hussein and waiting for sanctions to work. You could have kept that up for another four years, concentrated on the economy and you probably would have been reelected.

You knew what a chance you were taking in going to war. You knew young men would die, possibly at the rate they did in WWII and other wars, thousands a day. You knew that war was unpredictable and that any plans for peace would probably go awry. You knew all that because that has been the experience of those who led our country into wars.

You knew your enemies would blame you and that our generation could not judge you fairly, but judge you we would. You knew you might lose the Presidency because you did what was best for the country. Your choice was to risk your career and fight for your country or to sit back and hope something would happen to change the minds of the enemy.

You chose the hard way; the path to freedom. We have suffered. Yes. And so have you. But suffering is one of the prices of freedom. We are bloodied but not bowed; we are proud and we are free. And an entire nation of oppressed peoples now can join us in celebrating their freedom.

Thank you, Mr. President, for having the courage to keep your vow to "protect and defend" us and to do so in spite of the risk to your own political aspirations. We who understand are grateful that we have had (and hope we will continue to have) a man of your convictions and your character to steer the ship of state through the turbulent waters of the past four years.

God Bless You, President Bush. We thank you for your Presidency.

Sunnye Tiedemann
Mother of an Air Force officer, mother-in-law to an Army Colonel and grandmother to a West Point Cadet

Friday, October 29

Kerry Howls in the Wind

It's hard to believe that intelligent, educated Americans can't see through John Kerry. I think they're just lazy -- too willing to believe what they want to hear (and Kerry is great at telling them just that) and not at all willing to check for themselves to find out what's true and what isn't.

Of course it's hard to find the truth. Take this latest issue -- that of the missing weapons in Iraq that Kerry says is evidence of a mismanaged war. Why should anyone be surprised if caches of weapons are missing? War isn't a stage play where the actors walk on, do as they're directed, then walk off. There's a reason for the term "fog of war."

There are plenty of possible scenarios. One, and to me the most reasonable, is that the really dangerous weapons (the WMDs) were transported out of Iraq shortly before our invasion. That would explain the trucks photographed by our spy satellites and the fact that there were still weapons on the sites when the shipments were finished.

Another scenario is that our troops destroyed the most visible weapons as per the testimony of Maj. Pearson, who says the 3rd Army destroyed some 250 tons of weapons found at that site.

Even if many of those weapons did wind up in the hands of the terrorists (and I don't believe for one minute that they did AFTER our forces found them), what's so surprising about that. We know terrorists are being supplied with manpower as well as weaponry from Syria and Iran. I'm sure the war planners were very aware of that possibility and have planned accordingly.

Kerry is just howling in the wind -- he doesn't seem to have any interest in truth (indeed, he doesn't seem to know what that is, or if he does, he doesn't seem to have any regard for it). And there is the crux of this story: Kerry shows his hysterical nature by taking a headline and running with it. He doesn't wait to find out what happened, he puts his own spin on it and begins his howl.

No one knows what happened yet. That's not surprising. There's a lot going on over there. A responsible candidate would wait and watch before he spoke. Kerry accuses the President of going to war too soon (after 10 years of waiting for Hussein to comply to UN directives) yet he jumps on the nearest bandwagon without waiting to find out what really happened.

But the really sad thing is: It looks like the American people simply blow in the wind without bothering to look for the facts. If you're blowing with the wind, the howling seems more important than it truly is.

Wednesday, October 27

THE MIRACLE ECONOMY

by James K. Glassman
(reprinted with permission of Tech Central Station, "Where Free Markets Meet Technology)

To hear John Kerry tell it, America is mired today in the worst economy since the Great Depression. How dumb does he think voters are?


We just set a record for yearly production: a GDP of nearly $12 trillion, or $120,000 per family. As for what really counts, personal well-being: A record 69 percent of Americans own their own homes, and the account balance in the average 401(k) plan is $77,000, up 22 percent in three years.



On the eve of his nomination at the Republican Convention in New York, Bush can be proud of the U.S. economy and what he's done to keep it growing.



He was dealt an extremely miserable hand by his predecessor. As Bill and Hillary Clinton were leaving the White House, the tech-stock bubble was deflating, and GDP and employment growth were slowing sharply. A recession began two months later.



The fraud at Enron, WorldCom and other companies, which would bloom into historic scandal in the fall of 2001, also occurred under Clinton's watch. And, then, of course, there was 9/11.



It is, frankly, a miracle that the U.S. economy is as good as it is today. How good? The Economist magazine says the U.S. will grow more than twice as fast as Europe this year, and our unemployment rate is roughly half that of France and Germany.



More interesting, compare Bush's economy to Clinton's at the same stage. "On many of the key variables that voters care about, the economy looks uncannily like it did in the summer of 1996," writes Michael Mandel in the current Business Week.



The unemployment and inflation rates today are precisely the same as at this time in 1996. Total job gains from January to July were somewhat higher in 1996 than in 2004, but in 1996 manufacturing jobs actually fell -- while they rose by 81,000 in 2004. Also this year, GDP growth and productivity were considerably higher than in 1996.



The ABC News/Money Magazine personal-finance index is 59 percent -- which is higher than the 18-year average. "I think economic growth will be faster in the second half of 2004 than in the first," writes David Malpass, the highly regarded Bear Stearns strategist.



So why all the gloom and doom? Three reasons….



1. In many cases, Kerry and his supporters are flat-out lying. Look up the non-partisan website of the Annenberg Center, www.FactCheck.org. It measures the claims of candidates against the truth. Here are headlines from recent studies: "Kerry Makes Bogus Comparison to Great Depression. He claims U.S. suffers greatest job loss since the 30s, which is not true." "Kerry's Dubious Economics. He says new jobs are paying $9,000 less than old ones. That's not a fact." The site also blasts the Media Fund, a pro-Kerry group that claimed in ads that Bush would help companies outsource jobs. "But Bush never said that," says FactCheck. Instead, Bush wants to create better conditions to keep jobs here.



2. The media are wildly pro-Kerry. Last week, the Census Bureau released data showing an insignificant uptick in poverty rates in the past year, plus a minuscule rise in the number of uninsured. From the hysterical TV and newspaper coverage, you would have thought another depression had begun. An actual reading of the report reveals that poverty rates "remained unchanged for Hispanics…and Blacks" and are below levels in the first Clinton term. Also, while the number of people without health insurance rose, so did the number of people with health insurance.



3. This is a time of change, and Americans are legitimately worried.



To assuage those fears, Bush wants to shift ownership and control -- of retirement funds, health insurance and other key assets -- away from businesses and government and toward individuals. That means building an "ownership society" through reform of Social Security, the tax code and the healthcare system.



I strongly agree, which is one reason I am helping to launch a new group called Investors Action, which will educate America's 93 million investors and promote their interests.



It's hard to see those interests being served by Kerrynomics. For example, Kerry wants to raise taxes, which will reduce returns for investors and increase the cost of capital for businesses, almost certainly whacking stocks. Already, as my colleague, economist Eric Engen of the American Enterprise Institute, has shown, when Kerry's prospects in the polls rise, the market falls -- and vice versa.



Maybe investors -- and investors-to-be -- aren't nearly so dumb as some candidates think they are.

First printed at Tech Central Station
http://www.techcentralstation.com/090204F.html

From A Majority of 9/11 Families



Three years ago, on the day that began as a beautiful September morning, 19 men and their sponsors carried out a brutal and devastating attack on our country, leaving 3,000 innocent men, women and children dead, including our loved ones. In those first agonizing hours, and for weeks and months afterward as we searched for word of their fate, we were aware that the shock and horror of that day was not ours alone. With a gratitude we could not yet express, we felt the strong and steady embrace of our fellow Americans. The words, “Never forget,” defiantly written in dust or humbly penned on makeshift memorials, were also permanently etched in our hearts. We will never forget your strength, your courage and your endless generosity.

We speak to you now in the same spirit that you spoke to us then, as Americans, united on behalf of our country. Like many of you, we feel that our nation is poised at a critical moment in history. Like our parents and grandparents before us, we know that the choices we make today will affect our children tomorrow. But we face a new challenge, a new kind of war and an enemy who is different from the enemies faced by earlier generations. This is not an adversary who can be reasoned with or appeased, this is an adversary who has repeatedly demonstrated that its means and ends are one and the same: the wanton slaughter of innocents.

After the attack, President Bush articulated the primary lesson of September 11, that simply reacting to danger after lives are lost is a weak and unacceptable national defense. He believes that taking the fight to the enemy is the best way to ensure that the enemy will not bring death to our doorstep here at home.

We agree.

Under the President‘s strong leadership in the war on terror and through the heroic efforts of our military forces, we are a safer country today. Two-thirds of al Qaeda leadership is dead, incarcerated, or on the run, its financing disrupted. The Taliban has been removed from power and training camps in Afghanistan and Iraq have been eliminated. On the domestic front, our dedicated law enforcement agencies are finally able to fight terror the same way they go after drug cartels; terrorists and terrorist cells have been thwarted in upstate New York, New Jersey, Oregon, Illinois and Florida.

The 9/11 Commission has provided this nation with a solid blueprint for going forward in the war on terror. It described the threat that killed our loved ones as a “gathering storm” which went unrecognized and unchecked for too many years and characterized the inability to predict the attack itself as a “failure of imagination.” Looking forward, the Commission offered this pointed warning, “Once the danger has fully materialized, evident to all, mobilizing action is easier--but it then may be too late.”

Through the prism of 9/11 and presaging the Commission’s conclusion, President Bush looked at Iraq and Saddam Hussein’s history, his willingness to use chemical weapons in the mass murder of his own citizens, his notorious attempts to acquire nuclear weapons, his record of giving financial aid and sanctuary to global terrorists--including members of al Qaeda--and his repeated refusal to cooperate with U.N. inspectors. He determined that this repressive regime was an intolerable danger to our country. Rather than waiting until it was too late to prevent a fully materialized threat, the President acted. We believe history will support the President’s decision.

We speak to you from the heart, as citizens from all across the country and every political stripe. We are Republicans and Democrats, “liberals” and “conservatives,” young and old. We are mothers and fathers, husbands and wives, sisters, brothers, sons, daughters and friends. We speak out from a profound sense of obligation to those we have lost and to the country that we love. Guided by core principles, President Bush has steadfastly told us who he is, what he believes and what he will fight for. He is a caring and decisive leader who is not afraid to make hard choices to keep this nation safe, by keeping it strong. He has sent a clear message to America’s friends and foes that he will not waver in his resolve as the winds of political fortune change. He will not revert to the failed policies of the past which only served to whet the appetite of those who would destroy us. He will stand firm against our adversaries.

As Americans who have keenly felt the scourge of terrorism, we are inspired and energized to follow the President’s lead, to rise to the occasion and get the job done. We are deeply grateful to President Bush, who rallied this nation on that dark September day, who has earned our respect and confidence, and whose leadership we trust to steer this country on the right path.

Three years ago, George W. Bush stood with us and vowed that he would “Never forget.”

We stand with him now.

CPT John Vigiano, FDNY (ret.)
father of FF John T Vigiano,
Ladder 132/FDNY, WTC attack &
DET Joseph V. Vigiano ESU 7,
NYPD, WTC attack

Ken and Laura Olson
Son and Daughter in Law of
Barbara Olson, AA 77, Pentagon attack, Ashburn, Virginia

Deena B. Burnett
Wife of Tom Burnett, UA flight 93,
Shanksville rebellion
Little Rock, AR

Hamilton Peterson & Julia Croft
Son & daughter-in-law
Douglas & Jean Hamilton
UA 93, Shanksville rebellion

Nancy & Charles Burcham
Sister of Stephen V. Long
Maj, Army, Pentagon attack
Danville, IN

Sue and Jim Weaver
Mother of Stephen Long
Maj, Army, Pentagon attack
Hazelwood, IN

Lynn Faulkner and
Loren and Ashley Faulkner
husband and daughters of
Wendy Ruth Faulkner
VP, AON Corporation
104th Floor, 2 WTC

Debra Burlingame & Bob Fraina
Sister of Charles Burlingame
Capt, AA 77, Pentagon attack
Pelham Manor, NY

Mark & Anine Burlingame
Brother of Charles Burlingame
Capt, AA 77, Pentagon attack
Philadelphia, PA

Jackie & Wayne Burlingame
Aunt/uncle of Charles Burlingame
Capt, AA 77, Pentagon attack

Robert & Suzanne Peraza
Parents of Robert David Peraza
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack
Mason, Ohio

Ada Garland
Godmother to Robert David Peraza
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Rob and Joan Burton
brother-in-law & sister to
Robert D. Peraza
Cantor Fitzgerald, 105th FL,

Maria Elenbaas
Cousin to
Robert David Peraza
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTCWTC 1

Bill and Linda Comber
Uncle and Aunt of
Robert David Peraza
Cantor Fitzgerald, 105th FL, WTC 1

Cornelius J. Comber
Grandfather of Robert Peraza
Cantor Fitzgerald, 105th FL, WTC 1

Neil Peraza, brother of
Robert David Peraza
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC 1

Ernest and Mary Ann Strada
Parents of Thomas S. Strada
Canter Fitzgerald, WTC attack
Westbury, NY

Susan Cronin
Sister of Thomas S. Strada
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack
Westbury, NY

Michael Strada
Brother of Thomas S. Strada
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Joseph Strada
Brother of Thomas S. Strada
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Dolores and Peter Owens, Sr.
Parents of Peter Owens, Jr.
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack
East Williston, NY

John Owens
Brother of Peter Owens, Jr.
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack
Mineola, NY

Pam & Tom Gould
Daughter of Patrick Driscoll
UA 93, Shanksville rebellion
Allendale, NJ

Nora, Steve & Christine Coco
sister, brother-in-law, & niece of LT Joseph G. Leavey
Ladder 15, FDNY, WTC

Patty & Tim Sumner
sister & brother-in-law of
LT Joseph G. Leavey
Ladder 15, FDNY, WTC

Barry K. Gore
Brother of Jennifer Lewis
Brother-in-law of Ken Lewis
crew members, AA Flight 77 Pentagon attack

Karen Coakley Struzik
& Husband Gary Struzik
Cousin of Kenny and Jennifer Lewis
Crew, AA 77, Pentagon Attack
Potomac Falls, VA

Thomas A. Crawford, III
Orange County, CA
Cousin of Michael A. Uliano,
WTC attack

Bernice Dowdy Coakley
Aunt of Kenny Lewis
and his wife Jennifer
crew members, AA Flight 77
Pentagon attack

Lorraine & Andrew Klein
Denver, Colorado
Cousin to Peter Owens
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Loretta O'Brien
Cousin of Peter Owens
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Margret O'Brien
Cousin of Peter Owens
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Chris Whitford
Brother of Firefighter Mark Whitford
Engine 23, FDNY, WTC

Dominic J. Puopolo, Jr.
Son of Sonia Morales Puopolo
Passenger AA 11, WTC 1
Miami Beach, FL

Wendy D. Burlingame
Daughter of Capt Charles Burlingame
Flight 77 Pentagon attack

Dr. Craig W. Sincock
Husband of Cheryle D. Sincock
Dept of Army civilian
Pentagon attack

Claire Cunningham
Aunt of Peter J. Owens, Jr.
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Daniel McDonnell
Uncle of Peter J. Owens, Jr.
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack.

Thomas Owens
Brother of Peter J. Owens, Jr.
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack.

Edward R. Cunningham
Cousin of Peter Owens
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Claire Y. Cunningham
Aunt of Peter Owens
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Greg and Moira Pellegrino
Cousin of Kenny and Jennifer Lewis
crew, AA flight 77, Pentagon attack

Mary & Richard Busche
Cousin of Peter Owens, Jr.
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Lois Olmstead
Cousin of Peter Owens
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

David B. Faulk
Brother-in-law of
Major Steve Long, Army
Pentagon attack

Brian Grauer
Brother-in-law of Michael Horn
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Dominic & Patricia Schiavo
father-in-law and mother-in-law of
Jack L. D'Ambrosi
Cantor Fitzgerald
103 floor, WTC attack

Lauryn Haffner
Sister-in-law of Peter J. Owens, Jr.
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Agnes Maida, Aunt of
Howard G. Gelling
Sandler O'Neill
WTC, South Twr, 104th FL

Gail Skennion
extended family of
LT Joseph G. Leavey,
Ladder 15, FDNY

Jason Fox
Friend of Charles Droz and
William Caswell, AA Flight 77

Brad & Diane Senter
President of the USS Saratoga
Association and former shipmate of
Charles "Chic" Burlingame

COL John F. McCall USAF
Friend of Charles "Chic" Burlingame
Capt. AA flt 77

Katherine Harrs
Family friend of Thomas S. Strada
Canter Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Mike Cohen
Naval Academy classmate of
Chic Burlingame, Capt. AA flt 77

Joe & Joan Olexa
Friends of Burlingame
family for 40+ years and
Charles Burlingame, Capt. AA flt 77

Mike & Barb Miller
Friends of
Vic Saracini, Capt, UA flt 175
and Chic Burlingame, Capt. AA flt 77

Terry Arford
Friend of Chick Burlingame,
Captain of AA flt 77, and fellow member of the Anaheim Band

Marshall & Pamela Stomel
Friends of family of Peter Owens
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC

Blanton & Meissa Gentry
Friends of family of Stephen V. Long
Major, Army, Pentagon Attack

John and Julia Chan
Peoria, IL, parents of
Charles Lawrence "Chip" Chan
Cantor Fitzgerald, 105th Fl, 1 WTC

William Lang II
Father of Roseanne Lang
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC
and grandfather of
Brendan Lang, WTC

William Lang III
Father of Brendan Lang
WTC North Tower and
brother of Roseanne Lang
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC

Linda & Tom Wilkonski
Cousin of Roseanne Lang, WTC
and Brenden Lang, WTC

Edward W. McGrain
Uncle to the wife of Paul Tegtmeier
Engine 4, FDNY, WTC

John Antretter
Friend/Brother of Peter Owens
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC

Judy and Ron Knight
Sister & brother-in-law
of Frank Wisniewski, VP, Cantor Fitzgerald, 104th Floor, WTC

Michael Nott
Friend of Charles Burlingame
Capt, AA 77, Pentagon attack
Orlando, FL

Mike & Maria Ragonese
Brother & sister-in-law of
Laura Marie Ragonese-Snik
AON Consultant, 101 Floor
South Tower, WTC


Loisanne, Jason, and
Jeannette Diehl, wife and children of
Michael D. Diehl
VP, Fiduciary Trust CO.
International, 2 WTC

Nancy K. Nee
Grieving sister of George C. Cain
FDNY, Ladder 7,
Marriott Hotel, WTC

Rosemary Cain
Mother of FF George C. Cain
FDNY, Ladder 7,
Marriott Hotel, WTC

Leslie Dimmling,
Wife of William Dimmling,
Senior VP, Marsh McLennan
North Tower, WTC

Bill McGough
Cousin to Kaleen Pezzuti and
Todd Pelino, Cantor Fitzgerald,
1 WTC, 101st floor

Walter Hamilton
Son of Felicia Hamilton
Fiduciary Trust, South Tower, WTC

Frank Mistretta, NYPD (retired)
Friend and former coworker of
SGT Timothy Roy, NYPD, WTC

Jean Waletich
Cousin of Patrick S. Dunn
Commander, USN, Pentagon

Carey Pierce
Brother of Dennis J. Pierce
Senior Auditor, NYS Dept of Taxation
South Tower, 86th Floor

Julius Zodda
Cousin of William Dimmling,
Senior VP, Marsh McLennan
North Tower, WTC

Michael Field
Sigma Chi fraternity brother,
University of Wisconsin, of
Kevin Francis Cleary
Broker, Euro Brokers Inc., WTC

Jeffrey Namm
Godfather of James Andrew Gadiel
Cantor Fitzgerald
103d Floor, North Tower, WTC

Maureen Morrison
Cousin To Ronald J. Hemenway
ET1, Navy, Pentagon attack

Patricia & Raymond Sellek
Sister & Brother-in-law of
Wilson & Darlene Flagg
AA 77, Pentagon Attack

Paul and Nassima Wachtler
parents of
Gregory Kamal Bruno Wachtler
Fred Alger Management
North Tower, 93rd fl

Barbara E. Lang, friend of
Robert C. Miller, Aon Corp., WTC
and SGT Thomas E. Jurgens,
NY State Court Officer, WTC

Ken Haskell,
Brother of
FF Tim Haskell, Squad 18 and
Battalion Chief Tom Haskell
FDNY, WTC

Brian Kevin Smith
Son of murdered
Firefighter Kevin J. Smith
FDNY, Haz-Mat Company 1
North Tower, WTC
Arlene Howard
Mother of Port Authority of NY & NJ
Police Officer George Gerard Howard
JFK ESU unit 8, WTC Tower 1

Christopher Howard
Son of Port Authority Police Officer
George Gerard Howard
JFK ESU truck 8, WTC Tower 1

Jimmy Boyle
Father of Michael Boyle
FDNY Engine 33, WTC attack
Westbury, NY

Marc & Michelle Flagg
Son of Wilson & Darlene Flagg
AA 77, Pentagon attack
Florida

Michael and Mary Flagg
Son of Wilson & Darlene Flagg
AA 77, Pentagon attack
Winchester, VA

Bob & Brit Gore
Parents and in-laws of
Jennifer & Kenneth Lewis
Crew, AA 77, Pentagon attack

Robert & Dawn Hemenway
Brother of Ronald J. Hemenway
ET1 Navy, Pentagon attack

Capt. Tom Lombardo
Friend of Charles Burlingame
Capt, AA 77, Pentagon attack
Gainesville, VA

Bart & Susan Whitman
Friend of Charles Burlingame
Pilot, AA flt. 77, Pentagon attack
Alexandria, VA

Kathryn Griffin
Friend of Charles F. Burlingame
Capt, AA 77, Pentagon attack
Washington, D.C.

Charles & Nancy Burcham Faulk
Brother in-law & Sister of
Stephen V. Long
Major, Army, Pentagon Attack
Danville, IN

Sue & James Weaver
Mother & Stepfather of
Stephen V. Long
Major, Army, Pentagon attack
Hazelwood, IN

George Long
Father of Stephen V. Long
Major, Army, Pentagon attack
Martinsville, IN

Sharon Miles
Aunt of Stephen V. Long
Major, Army, Pentagon Attack
Montrose, CO

Connie Mastin
Aunt of Stephen V. Long
Major, Army, Pentagon attack
Hayward, WI

Tina Long
Wife of Stephen V. Long
Major, Army, Pentagon Attack
Augusta, GA

Phil & Lynn Danforth
Uncle/Aunt of Stephen V. Long
Major, Army, Pentagon attack
Overland Park, KS

Jennifer Iannotti
Sister of Thomas S. Strada
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Robert & Shirley Hemenway
Parents of Ronald J. Hemenway,
ET1, Navy, Pentagon attack
Shawnee, KS

Betsy A. Gore
Sister-in-law of Jennifer and Ken Lewis
crew members, AA Flight 77
Pentagon attack

Linda Pohlmann
Wife of William H. Pohlmann
NYS Taxation Dept
WTC attack

Dr & Mrs Kenneth Paul Ambrose
Parents of Paul Wesley Ambrose, M.D.,
MPH, Sr. Clinical Advisor
to Surgeon General Satcher
AA Flight 77 Pentagon

Denis and Suzana Coakley
Cousin and cousin-in-law of
Ken and Jennifer Lewis,
AA crew members, Pentagon

Ray and Kathy Campbell
Yankton South Dakota
Cousin (Ray) to Peter Owens
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC

Elizabeth Stanton
Cousin of Peter Owens
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Susan Weaver
Hazelwood, IN
Step-Sister of Stephen V. Long
Major, Army, Pentagon

Bernard & Patricia Welsh
Cousin of Peter Owens
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Jana Y. Lovick
Family friend of
Major Stephen V. Long
Army, Pentagon Attack

Catherine T. Puwalski
Friend of Strada Family
in Memory of Thomas S. Strada
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack
Westbury, NY

Noreen and Jim Considine
Aunt and Uncle of Peter J. Owens Jr.
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC

Diane Edwards
her husband is the cousin of
Dennis M. Edwards
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC

Nancy and Tom Mulligan
Parents of Peter James Mulligan
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Terence & Joan Owens
Brother of Peter J. Owens, Jr.
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack.

Kevin & Lorraine Owens
Brother of Peter J. Owens, Jr.
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack.

Elizabeth Stanton
Cousin of Peter J. Owens
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Thomas Stanton
Cousin of Peter J. Owens
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Elizabeth Stanton
Cousin of Peter J. Owens
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

David Coakley
Cousin of Kenny Lewis
and his wife Jennifer
crew, AA Flight 77, Pentagon attack

Bernard and Patricia Welsh
Cousin of Peter Owens Jr.
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Kathleen Leone
Cousin of Peter Owens Jr.
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Kevin J. Welsh
Cousin of Peter Owens Jr.
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Joanne McMahon
Cousin of Peter J. Owens
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Kate Owens
Sister-in-law of
Peter J. Owens, Jr.
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC

Juan A. Cruz-Santiago
Civilian Accountant
US Army, Pentagon Survivor

Barbara and Sean Bailey
Aunt and Uncle of Brett Bailey,
who along with their niece's
husband, Robert Coll,
died in the North Tower

Jordan Cayne
Father of Jason David Cayne
VP, Cantor Fitzgerald
104 floor, WTC attack

Robert Debrot
Cousin to Howard Gelling Jr.
WTC attack

Jack Debrot
Cousin of Howard Gelling
WTC attack

Lynne (last name withheld
at submitter's request)
Cousin of Ricardo Quinn
FDNY Paramedic, WTC attack

Ed Lamadore, friend
of FDNY firefighters
Ken Hatten, Ed Sweeney,
Bill Burke, & Joe Spor
who each lost sons in
the WTC attack

Jean Pangarliotas
Friend of family of Peter Owen
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

Jennifer Taddeo
Friend of family of Peter Owens
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC

Cindy Justice
Friend of family of Stephen V. Long
Major, Army, Pentagon Attack

Becky Marsh
Friend of family of Stephen V. Long
Major, Army, Pentagon Attack

Sherry M. Allen
Friend of family of Stephen V. Long
Major, Army, Pentagon Attack

Bill Brown (retired
American Airlines pilot)
Friends of crews members
of both America Airlines
flights 11 and 77

C. R. (Bob) Paty
Friend of Captain Chic Burlingame
AA Flight 77

Nancy Thompson
Friend of family of Stephen V. Long
Major, Army, Pentagon Attack

Louise Hoffman
Friend of family of Stephen V. Long
Major, Army, Pentagon Attack

Michelle, Chris & Lisa Hornbaker
Sister, Nephew, & Niece of
Stephen V. Long
Major, Army, Pentagon Attack
Martinsville, Indiana

Richard P. Lang
Brother of Roseanne Lang
Cantor Fitzergald, WTC
Uncle of Brenden Lang, WTC

Timothy J Lang
Brother of Rosanne P. Lang, WTC,
and Uncle of Brendan Lang
Structuretone Inc., WTC

Andrew Caspersen
Boyfriend of Catherine F. MacRae
Fred Alger Management
93rd Floor, 1 WTC

Robert Heller
Brother of H. Joseph Heller
Carr Futures, 1 WTC

Colleen and Rob Rastovich
Sister and Brother-in-law
of H. Joseph Heller
Carr Futures, 1 WTC

Robert & Peggy Scandole
Parents of Robert Scandole
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC Attack

NYPD Detective
Christopher Scandole
Brother of Robert Scandole
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC

Thomasine Aberle
Aunt of Robert Scandole
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC Attack

Vincent Scandole
Uncle of Robert Scandole
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC Attack


Maria Cella
Niece of H. Joseph Heller
Carr Futures, 1 WTC

Roberta Heller
Mother of H.Joseph Heller
Carr Futures, 1 WTC

Patrick Michael Heller
and his wife, Corie,
Cousin to H. Joseph Heller
Carr Futures, 1 WTC

Police Officer David Lim
Port Authority Police
K-9 Unit, Handler & friend
of K-9 Sirius #17
Killed in 2 WTC (B-1 level)

Anthony & Mary Ellen DiBona
Friends of Captain
Charles "Chic" Burlingame
American Airlines Flight 77

Stephanie L. Capps
Niece of Linda L. New
Girlfriend of FF Steven Coakley,
Firehouse 217, 1 WTC

David Huczko
Brother of Port Authority Police Office
Stephen Huczko, North Tower, WTC
and brother of Richard Huczko,
GE contractor, who was
killed in Iraq 3/29/2004

Christopher F. O'Conor
Cousin of Patrick S. Dunn
Commander, USN, Pentagon

Patricia A. O'Conor
Aunt of Patrick S. Dunn
CDR, USN, Pentagon

Stephen F. O'Conor
Cousin of Patrick S. Dunn
Commander, USN, Pentagon

Patricia D. and Richard J. Clark
Parents of Thomas "Tommy" R. Clark
VP, Sandler O'Neill
104th Fl, South Tower, WTC

Maureen and John Harrigan
Cousin (Maureen) of
Peter J. Owens
Cantor Fitzgerald, WTC attack

James and Marie McMahon
Cousins of Peter J. Owens Jr.
Cantor Fitzgerald - North Tower WTC

J.T. McMahon
Cousin of Peter J. Owens
Cantor Fitzgerald - WTC Attack

Bert Wooley
Brother of CPT David T. Wooley
FDNY, Ladder 4 Engine 54,
South Tower, WTC

Mary Otto
Mother of CPT David T. Wooley
FDNY, Ladder 4 Engine 54,
South Tower, WTC

Patricia Brennan
Aunt of FF Michael Brennan
FDNY, Ladder 4
Marriott Hotel, WTC

Charles Barberi, Sgt, NYPD
Cousin to Edward Strauss
Port Authority of NY & NJ
South Tower, WTC

Jim & Joan Sullivan
Parents of
Lt. Christopher P. Sullivan
FDNY, Ladder 111
WTC, South Tower

Heidi Hochwarth
Sister-in-law of
Firefighter Kenneth Marino
FDNY, Rescue 1, WTC


Tuesday, October 26

Confidence in the polls?

AOL came up with something new this morning. They took a poll of members, asking "How much confidence do you have in the voting process this year?"

About the results, they write: "More than half in the poll, 54 percent, say they think the vote count in Florida was not fair and accurate, with Republicans overwhelmingly saying it was and Democrats overwhelmingly saying it was not. Independents say by a 2-to-1 margin that it was not fair."

As for myself, I'm concerned enough to sign up to work at the polls on election day. As you know, I'm an avid Bush supporter but I will not stand for any manipulation of the results by either party if I have anything to say about it. The idea of John Kerry becoming President scares me as much as it did 40 years ago to have Lyndon Johnson elected President. I was right then and I'm right now. But we'll take our punishment like Americans if we get stuck with Kerry; just like we did with Johnson. However, he won't get in illegally (like Johnson did -- ask me!) if I can help it.

My county seems to have pretty good safety measures in place. Having worked as a Republican in a Democratic county, however, I am aware that not all counties are careful. In fact, in all my years of election experience, the only cheaters I've ever seen were Democrats. That, in fact, had a lot to do with my joining the Republican party when I decided I wanted more of a voice than I could get being an Independent voter.

The important thing, however, is that we all get behind whoever is elected President. When the election is final, I hope we won't have anymore like we saw at the Democratic convention and have heard from the media for the past four years.

On the other hand, I'm as sure it won't happen if the Democrats win as I am sure it will if the Republicans win.



Friday, October 22

What's going on here?

Let's look at some seemingly unrelated facts and relate them:

First, the leadership of both the Democratic and Republican parties know that John Kerry met with the enemy during the Viet Nam conflict at least once and that his activism adversely affected the treatment of our prisoners at that time. They know the definition of treason and that the 14th Amendment of the Constitution, Section 3 specifically prohibits people who "shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof" from serving in Congress without formal absolution from that body.

They know it because I have personally brought it to their attention on more than one occasion.

Now look at this. In July, 2000 (months before the present administration was elected
and years before Arnold Schwartzenegger became governor of California) Barney Frank, Senator from Massachusetts, proposed H.J.88, a "CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT TO ALLOW FOREIGN-BORN CITIZENS TO BE PRESIDENT." There were, of course, other members of congress involved but Frank was the author. Frank, of course, is a close associate of the Kennedys and Schwartzenegger, a native of Austria, is married to a Kennedy.

There's an AWFUL lot of talk about Schwartzenegger running for President. Thank goodness it also takes an awful lot to change the Constitution.

So now I'm looking for more incidents that show that, in spite of their howling at each other, there really is not much difference between the two parties -- that they actually have the same basic goals and work together in ways we overlook.

Then I want to consider just what this means to the country.



Thursday, October 21

CNN and the Flu

It was The Day From Hell.
Hubby and I arose at 5:30 a.m. and headed for the Johnson County Health Office to get our flu shots. We stood in line until 11:00 a.m., when we were told that there was no more vaccine. The last shot was given to someone three people ahead of us in line. I found that quite irritating since several people had found "friends" to talk to in front of us and had received their shots when they should have been in line behind us.

We went home, had a sandwich and a short nap, then returned to the fray.

At 2 p.m. we arrived at St. Pius X Elementary School and sat in the car for an hour until people began to line up for shots that were to be given at 5 p.m. From 3 until 4 we stood in line (watching people come to visit with friends in front of us again!). The Red Cross gave out numbers (mine was 25) and let us into the building where we sat (thank goodness) in a classroom until they began giving shots. It was 7 pm before we got out of there -- and treated ourselves to dinner out.

When we left the building after our shots, the line was horrendous -- there must have been 500 people there.

I wonder how many were there simply because they had heard they couldn't get them. More than one person in line confessed that s/he hadn't bothered to get a shot last year, noting that they hadn't gotten the flu, either.

My own contention is that the shot isn't all that necessary unless you have a medical condition. I've skipped the shots more than I've gotten them (and probably built up some immunization since I have had the flu during those years), although I did get one last year. My husband, on the other hand, has suffered from asthma and bronchial infections for years and it's crucial that he get one -- thus the extreme determination to get his.

I had decided while we stood in the morning line that I would let the lady behind me have my shot, thinking that she obviously needed it more than I. We learned, however, that there will be plenty of vaccine for everyone in time so I went ahead and got mine the second go-around.

This morning CNN reports "Just 10 years ago, five manufacturers produced flu vaccine shots for Americans. That number has dropped to two.

Lester Crawford, acting commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, testified before Congress two years ago that he feared the flu vaccine supply network would dwindle to a single company."

What CNN doesn't report in that article is WHY four companies no longer make the flu vaccine. They're afraid if they admitted that fear of litigation drove those companies to stop producing the vaccine, they would add credibility to the Republican demand for torte reform.

After all, who expects CNN to air a balanced report? Most of us know better.

Wednesday, October 20

Who would be the best friend?

The press is interested in whether Mrs. Bush and Mrs. Kerry could be friends. So who do they ask?

In an interview with USA Today, Mrs. Kerry said of Laura Bush
"...But I don't know that she's ever had a real job — I mean, since she's been grown up. So her experience and her validation comes from important things, but different things. And I'm older, and my validation of what I do and what I believe and my experience is a little bit bigger — because I'm older, and I've had different experiences."

I'm not sure just what having a "real job" has to do with anything. Is the implication here that if you don't run a multi-billion dollar corporation board (and she doesn't even do that), you don't have a "real job?" Is a woman only validated by a job? That's what that statement said to me: You're not valid if you don't have a "real job." I suspect she wouldn't call motherhood a real job -- and probably doesn't consider teaching a worthy occupation. But I'm reading too much into what she said.
Later she apologized, saying she "forgot" about Mrs. Bush's eleven year teaching/librarian career.

Mrs. Kerry prides herself on being a "say-what-I-think" kind of person and, obviously, she thinks she's better than Mrs. Bush (and just about everyone else, judging from her behavior). Mrs. Kerry (who insists upon being called Heinz-Kerry, which says an awful lot about what she really respects)simply doesn't value the kinds of things Mrs. Bush does. Things like consideration, politeness, sensitivity to others -- the very things that make not only a great First Lady but a first-rate person.

There's no place in international diplomacy for brashness, self-aggrandizing, insensitivity and selfishness, all qualities amply displayed again and again in this campaign, not only by Mr. and Mrs. Kerry but by Mr. and Mrs. Edwards as well.

I would treasure a friendship with Mrs. Bush, with whom I have a lot in common besides our backgrounds -- a love of music, art, books and reading, a respect for history. I would have no interest at all in being friends with Mrs. Kerry whose main interest seems to be in money.

This campaign has shown quite a difference in the candidates: President and Mrs. Bush have demonstrated intelligence, compassion, morality and a depth of character the American people haven't seen in the White House in a decade. Mr. and Mrs. Kerry look like a rerun of the Clintons -- shallow, ambitious, selfish and pseudo-intellectual.
Also, the Kerrys surround themselves with the sleaziest characters in the Democratic party like Terry McAuliffe, David Boies, Sandy Berger and James Carville. I know who I want in the White House!


Monday, October 18

The Deed is Done -- I Voted Today

We voted today and I got my usual high from the process.

I don't know why it is, but whenever I come home from travels overseas and see the American flag flying over US soil, I get all emotional, weepy and grateful to be an American. I get the same reaction when I vote. It happened again today.

This is the second day polls have been open in Kansas and we thought we'd just dash in, vote and be on our way. Not so fast! We stood in line!! Things proceeded efficiently and we were out of there within a half hour, riding the aforementioned high and thanking God that people are turning out.

It's my firm conviction that the more people who vote, the more likely we are (as a nation) to get it right. Of course I believe that President Bush is the best man for the job because of his record, I'm willing to concede that I have been wrong before. I did, in youthful innocence, vote for Jimmy Carter! But the mistakes of the past don't need to be revisited here.

It bothers me to know that some people vote on things like the way a candidate handles him/herself in a debate -- that's about as shallow a reason to support someone as I can think of. Unless, of course, you vote because you like his wife or his family or...whatever. All of that is superficial nonsense.

What counts is his character and his record. We need a man who will do his best and who is willing to make the sacrifices necessary to do the job. President Bush has done that -- and in the process he has chalked up a record to run on. Four more years of his kind of Presidency is just what we need.

Kerry's Senate record is less than distinguished. If Kerry wins, though, he'll be my President. You won't see me at a Republican convention with a black arm band that reads "My President is George Bush." And I'll give him the respect due to his office. If he falters, I'll be the first to scream at him. If he succeeds, I'll gratefully praise him.

But I don't think Mr. Kerry can do the job. He is too ambitious and too self-centered. He judges success by dollar signs and his principles are whatever seems expedient. As a man he compares to President Bush as a kitten compares to a lion.

But soon we'll know....

Sunday, October 17

The Fallen Star

My husband and I moved to Kansas City two years ago to enjoy our retirement in a lively city full of great entertainment, opportunities for further education, a variety of restaurants and friends -- those we love and those we have yet to meet. We have discovered many pleasant surprises since we moved here, and very few disappointments. The Kansas City Star provided that today.

My heretofore favorite newspaper among those in all the communities we've lived in today endorsed John Kerry for President. No, we won't cancel our subscription. I probably won't even write a letter to the editor but my disappointment is deep and personal.

The editors begin by contrasting four years ago with today. During the last election, they claim, it was a "a time when the United States enjoys peace, extraordinary prosperity and great influence abroad.” A short look back at newspapers online dated 1999 and 2000 remind us that it was a time of deepening recession and a time when Americans were deeply disgusted with the politicians in Washington, where events had conspired to make the American Presidency a joke to much of the rest of the world.

Today, my favorite newspaper editors said, "Americans worry on a daily basis about terrorist threats, a bungled U.S. occupation in Iraq, international disapproval, widespread job insecurity, runaway federal budget deficits and a host of other problems."

However, the truth is...the Bush Administration has successfully strengthened the protection of our citizens (I know because I was involved in a foiled terrorist attempt) although they admit they are doing more as fast as they can. They have strengthened an economy that was floundering when they took office and suffered a damaging blow on 9/11. (And a study of national economics shows that the President is doing the only thing he could have done under the circumstances to stabilize the economy.) President Bush's policies have disrupted Al Qaeda and mangled the Taliban while drawing terrorists to Iraq where they are being dispatched. Egypt has "seen the writing on the wall" and given up its nuclear program. The first free elections ever were held in Afghanistan and soon will be held in Iraq. Saddam Hussein is in prison and, although I suspect he thinks he will return to power, he won't. Thousands of mass graves have been uncovered in Iraq -- the legacy of his reign.

It's easy for American media to say the "occupation" of Iraq is bungled. But that very statement proves a lack of understanding of the situation. American troops are fighting terrorists in Iraq in the daytime while they build the society at night. My son-in-law, a retired Army colonel who works as a contractor for the Army returned from Iraq recently full of angry frustration because the media doesn't report what is really going on there. Americans aren't "occupying," they are fighting and building.

"Widespread job insecurity" Star editors wrote today...and they were writing the same thing five years ago as they saw Payless Cashways struggling with bankruptcy and downsizing, CST Steel struggling with unions and new management, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City stung by a series of financial scandals and public relations setbacks and markets shaky enough so that staff writer Nicolova wrote about investors not"waiting for the mail to deliver the news of disappointing quarterly earnings. Fund managers and financial planners have been flooded with phone calls from clients asking for advice."

To hear the Democrats and the KC Star tell it, the Bush administration is responsible for companies outsourcing jobs. Not so. If you'll remember, in 1998 - 1999 the economy went into a bit of a tailspin. Companies were already "outsourcing" jobs. In December, 1999(when the Clinton administration was firmly in power in Washington, the Dallas Business Journal announced that INspire Insurance Solutions (NASDAQ: NSPR) would reduce its "work force by approximately 100 people, effective Dec. 31, 1999, due to reorganization. The company said it will discontinue its licenced software packages efforts, and concentrate on its business process outsourcing business. INSpire had income of $11.6 million on sales of $87.2 million for its fiscal year ending December 1998."

IBM had already outsourced its pc tech assist to Ireland. I know because I had many conversations with Irish gentlemen who helped me with computer problems while we compared the weather in Belfast with Kansas.

The "runaway federal budget" the Star blames on President Bush would have been the same "runaway" no matter what administration was in Washington after 9/11. Assuming, of course, that the administration decided to try to protect and defend the United States and solve some pressing issues (like education) at the same time. The Star neglects to address the President's plan to reduce that deficit in half in five years. But that's the way THEY play partisan politics, isn't it. We don't tell ALL of the story.

The Kansas City Star says, "With Kerry, the nation could expect leadership that would result in dramatic improvements in homeland security and a strengthened military force. Americans also would see more effective strategies in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the welcome rebuilding of our tattered international alliances." I challenge them to tell me specifically what Kerry plans to do to make that true. I've read all his campaign speeches as well as everything available of his 20-years in the Senate...and more. He has promised to do all that but nowhere has he said how. There are no distinct plans, no specifics on what those strategies would be. The "dramatic improvements" he has spoken of are what has been done for the past four years and continues to be done today.

According to the Star's editorial: "Bush seems incapable of even acknowledging mistakes, much less learning from them. And there have been many mistakes, including fundamental failures in the area that the president claims as his greatest strength: national security." But he hasn't made any mistakes -- only the media and his critics claim he has. Going to war was no mistake, neither in Afghanistan nor in Iraq. And anyone who has studied war knows that it is the most unpredictable situation imaginable. War -- any war -- has a life of its own. The President has shown the flexibility necessary to change what needs to be changed. Yes, he has been surprised at events (he said so) but he listens to his military advisors and lets them run the show.

One of President Bush's strengths IS national security. Of course the media doesn't know about most of the successes. If they did, they would not hesitate to describe it all, and what worked would not work anymore. I believe media writers, editors and correspondents know that and they resent that the administration feels that way. However, they've more than proved their irresponsibility in similar matters.

Look at this: The Star editor writes, "Republicans have issued dire warnings against a return to a “pre-9-11 mentality,” implying that this mindset is the province of the Democratic ticket" and continues to say that the Bush administration is the embodyment of that mentality. "The commission found that top administration officials failed to heed urgent warnings from various sources about the possibility of large-scale terrorist attacks. The commission provided the public with ample evidence that the administration should have done far more to protect the country in the months before the attacks — and should be doing more now."

As I mentioned before, I'm in the unique position to know that the Administration is doing all it can as fast as it can. AND IT SHOULD NOT BE HELD RESPONSIBLE FOR A SYSTEM THAT WAS IN PLACE BEFORE IT TOOK OFFICE 4 MONTHS BEFORE. As for the warnings, the Clinton administration had the same warnings, had even sustained attacks, yet no one imagined what took place on 9/11. It is irresponsible to judge a new administration in the light of what we now know.

Most horrendous of all, the Star editor writes,"John Kerry is not a perfect candidate with a flawless record. But he is a man of obvious intelligence, compassion, patriotism and courage whose presidency would be guided by a clear understanding of what went wrong in the last four years and what needs to be done in the next four." John Kerry is not a man of compassion, patriotism and courage. (He looks intelligent but his actions in his life make one wonder.)

It takes a far stretch of imagination to call him compassionate (except he does kiss babies if he has to), patriotic (unless he doesn't happen to agree with the leaders of his country, which in his minds gives him the right as a citizen to meet with the enemy)and his courage is the most doubtful at all. Four months does not a tour of duty in Viet Nam make and he has never -- not once -- taken on a major battle on the Senate floor.

Maybe we will cancel our subscription after all. The (Kansas City) Star has certainly fallen in our estimation.


Sunday, October 10

Who Lied?

"One way or the other, we are determined to deny Iraq the capacity to develop weapons of mass destruction and the missiles to deliver them. That is our bottom line." - President Clinton, Feb. 4, 1998

"If Saddam rejects peace and we have to use force, our purpose is clear. We want to seriously diminish the threat posed by Iraq's weapons of mass destruction program." - President Clinton, Feb. 17, 1998

Iraq is a long way from [here], but what happens there matters a great deal here. For the risks that the leaders of a rogue state will use nuclear, chemical or biological weapons against us or our allies is the greatest security threat we face." - Madeline Albright, Feb 18, 1998

"He will use those weapons of mass destruction again, as he has ten time since 1983." - Sandy Berger, Clinton National Security Adviser, Feb, 18, 1998

"[W]e urge you, after consulting with Congress, and consistent with the U.S. Constitution and laws, to take necessary actions (including, if appropriate, air and missile strikes on suspect Iraqi sites) to respond effectively to the threat posed by Iraq's refusal to end its weapons of mass destruction programs." - Letter to President Clinton, signed by Sens. Carl Levin (D-MI), Tom Daschle (D-SD), John Kerry( D - MA), and others Oct. 9, 1998

"Saddam Hussein has been engaged in the development of weapons of mass destruction technology which is a threat to countries in the region and he has made a mockery of the weapons inspection process." - Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D, CA), Dec. 16, 1998

"Hussein has ... chosen to spend his money on building weapons of mass destruction and palaces for his cronies." - Madeline Albright, Clinton Secretary of State, Nov. 10, 1999

"There is no doubt that ... Saddam Hussein has invigorated his weapons programs. Reports indicate that biological, chemical and nuclear programs continue apace and may be back to pre-Gulf War status. In addition, Saddam continues to redefine delivery systems and is doubtless using the cover of an ilicit missile program to develop longer-range missiles that will threaten the United States and our allies." - Letter to President Bush, Signed by Sen. Bob Graham (D, FL,) and others, December 5, 2001

"We begin with the common belief that Saddam Hussein is a tyrant and threat to the peace and stability of the region. He has ignored the mandated of the United Nations and is building weapons of mass destruction and the means of delivering them." - Sen. Carl Levin (D, MI), Sept. 19, 2002

"We know that he has stored secret supplies of biological and chemical weapons throughout his country." - Al Gore, Sept. 23, 2002

"Iraq's search for weapons of mass destruction has proven impossible to deter and we should assume that it will continue for as long as Saddam is in power." - Al Gore, Sept. 23, 2002

"We have known for many years that Saddam Hussein is seeking and developing weapons of mass destruction." - Sen. Ted Kennedy (D, MA), Sept. 27, 2002

"The last UN weapons inspectors left Iraq in October of 1998. We are confident that Saddam Hussein retains some stockpiles of chemical and biological weapons, and that he has since embarked on a crash course to build up his chemical and biological warfare capabilities. Intelligence reports indicate that he is seeking nuclear weapons..." - Sen. Robert Byrd (D, WV), Oct. 3, 2002

"I will be voting to give the President of the United States the authority to use force-- if necessary-- to disarm Saddam Hussein because I believe that a deadly arsenal of weapons of mass destruction in his hands is a real and grave threat to our security." - Sen. John F. Kerry (D, MA), Oct. 9, 2002

"There is unmistakable evidence that Saddam Hussein is working aggressively to develop nuclear weapons and will likely have nuclear weapons within the next five years .. We also should remember we have always underestimated the progress Saddam has made in development of weapons of mass destruction." - Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D, WV), Oct 10, 2002

"He has systematically violated, over the course of the past 11 years, every significant UN resolution that has demanded that he disarm and destroy his chemical and biological weapons, and any nuclear capacity. This he has refused to do" - Rep. Henry Waxman (D, CA), Oct. 10, 2002

"In the four years since the inspectors left, intelligence reports show that Saddam Hussein has worked to rebuild his chemical and biological weapons stock, his missile delivery capability, and his nuclear program. He has also given aid, comfort, and sanctuary to terrorists, including al Qaeda members.. It is clear, however, that if left unchecked, Saddam Hussein will continue to increase his capacity to wage biological and chemical warfare, and will keep trying to develop nuclear weapons." - Sen. Hillary Clinton (D, NY), Oct 10, 2002

"We are in possession of what I think to be compelling evidence that Saddam Hussein has, and has had for a number of years, a developing capacity for the production and storage of weapons of mass destruction." - Sen. Bob Graham (D, FL), Dec. 8, 2002

"Without question, we need to disarm Saddam Hussein. He is a brutal, murderous dictator, leading an oppressive regime ... He presents a particularly grievous threat because he is so consistently prone to miscalculation ... And now he is miscalculating America's response to his continued deceit and his consistent grasp for weapons of mass destruction ... So the threat of Saddam Hussein with weapons of mass destruction is real" - Sen. John F. Kerry (D, MA), Jan. 23. 2003


Saturday, October 9

Can't Kerry Win With the Truth?

John Kerry knows better when he claims that Pres. Bush “has underfunded [the No Child Left Behind law] by $28 billion.” During President Bush’s administration, funding for education has grown by 58% during his first three years and he has proposed another 5% increase for the coming fiscal year.

Kerry claims that the President broke a "promise" to fund the law at the maximum Congress authorized but that’s not true, either. What the President promised was to “provide the resources necessary.” Of course that leads us into semantics…and what the definition of “necessary” is.

Democrats have wrongly accused Pres. Bush of cutting education budgets 27%. A study of the record, however, shows that funding for the department of education has gone from Clinton-funded $39,932 in 2001 to Bush-funded $66,434 in 2005.

Another “fib” Kerry promotes is his claim that Pres. Bush "slashes job training by 24%." What the administration actually proposes to do is to move $250 million out of what it calls “outdated high-school shop courses ill-matched to the modern job market” and move them into a new "Community College Initiative" to upgrade technical and career training at 2-year colleges. Innovative, yes. Provocative, maybe. But “slashes job training,” not at all.

The saddest thing about all this is that Kerry and the DNC know the truth; they just prefer not to acknowledge it and try to come up with something better. The American people deserve candidates who are careful to face campaigning facts as they are, not to obscure and obfuscate reality.

Sources:
"The President's Agenda for Long-Term Growth & Prosperity: Remarks by the President on the Economy," Birmingham, Alabama 15 July 2002.

Budget of the United States Government, Fiscal Year 2005, Analytical Perspectives , Table 24 4. Beneficiary Projections For Major Benefit Programs, Jan 2004: P361.

Budget of United States Government, Fiscal Year 2005, "Historical tables, Table 5.2-Budget Authority by Agency: 1976-2009" Jan 2004.




Friday, October 8

The Long Kerry Night

We're back from traveling again -- and talking to folks across the Midwest about the election. This one's going to be close, folks.

I have so many reasons for opposing John Kerry for President.

Hubby and I can't afford him because we're retired and living on a fixed income. Reading through all his pie-in-the-sky programs is frightening because each and every one must be paid for. That means higher taxes in spite of what he promises.

More money will go to schools again, as in past years, but without the accountability the No Child Left Behind Act requires. That program has worked where educators have used it; and the teachers and administrators who haven't used it (there are still $$$$$$$ unclaimed in the program) are the ones who complain the most about it.

It won't affect us because the guys in our family are already serving; but John Kerry promises to send 40,000 more troops to Iraq and Afghanistan (check his campaign speeches). That means a draft -- there's no other way to come up with that many divisions.

The worst experiences I've had throughout my life were caused by government thinking it knew better than I what was best for me. John Kerry believes in and will do everything he can to promote those kinds of government programs. GET OUT OF MY LIFE!

John Kerry reminds me of Lyndon Johnson. This campaign is just like the Goldwater/Johnson campaigns in 1964 -- deja vu all over again, as Yogi B says. Kerry is simply lying on so many counts; from claiming that he could have done better in the war and saying Pres. Bush lied about WMDs to the country when Kerry did the exact same thing -- from the same "intelligence."

Kerry's people continually accuse the Bush campaign (and NPR did a horribly unbalanced "report") on "The Bush campaign is charting dangerous new ground in its efforts to exclude non-Bush supporters from Bush events. There have been numerous stories of people being blocked or ejected because they were wearing Kerry buttons or T-shirts." Well, guess what, folks. Each and every one of those people was shouting and disrupting the events. Others who weren't disruptive were left alone.

And, PEOPLE, the current unemployment rate the Dems are yelling about is lower than it was when Clinton ran for his second term. Look up the stats.

When Lyndon Johnson won the 1964 election the US descended into a time of truly oppressive government and a losing war -- lost not because the US couldn't win, but because of people like John Kerry and civilians who wouldn't listen to the military.

There's only one great thing about a Kerry win. If he does, he'll lead us into heavy taxation and lose a war; he'll never get a second term and Hillary will have lost her chance at the Presidency because the country will take a conservative turn unlike any every seen before.

You heard it here first.

Sunday, October 3

Our Troops Accuse the Media of Biased Reporting

Visit Marine Corps Moms (http://marinecorpsmoms.com) for a more accurate perception of what's going on in Iraq and Afghanistan than you can get from American media. Here's a quote...and there's more on the site. Much more. And they're first hand reports.

"we get what reader Jim League of Smyrna complains about. He cited a picture and story featured at the top of Page 13A in Saturday's Tennessean:

"The perhaps 100 protesters get front-and-center billing, and the impression is that all of Iraq is unhappy. What is missing is perspective. Imagine a foreigner perusing the front page of The Tennessean. He reads about a 15-year-old-boy being chained to his bed for six weeks. Would he be justified in believing that all parents in America constrain their children? If he had no perspective and if his impression was selectively reinforced by subtle media or political pundits, this could be possible."

Exactly. And what we get on TV is also just one side. Consider this story Rose saw reported: "I was going through the battle damage assessment at my desk with NBC's Today on the TV. The attack occurred in the middle of the night. I had the footage of the attack on my computer, and here's Katie Couric (or whoever hosts it) showing the same bomb location.}

"I had pictures of the bombed vehicles, which is how I knew she was talking about the same location. The next shot is kids being carried into a hospital. We had eyes on this for a long time. If there were kids in there, they were toting weapons or the terrorists used them as human shields. …"

"I went to our Combat Operations Center and walked into them watching the same thing. I verified what I thought and spoke with our intelligence guys. They said the whole thing was staged and probably old footage. They track the footage and have seen repeat footage shown in the past. They also said to look at the footage and see if it makes sense. More often than not, it doesn't … pulling a child from rubble with relatively clean clothes. "

Is NBC wrong and the Marines right? Americans deserve both sides to make up their minds."

This is what I have heard from my son-in-law, a retired Army Colonel who recently went to Iraq to help with training. When he returned he was furious with journalists and spent hours describing what was REALLY happening in Iraq. What he described was what he had seen first hand.

When was it decided that the American people didn't deserve to know the truth? Who has so little faith in the American people that they can't give us balanced news? Isn't it time we took matters into our own hands and did something about it?

Saturday, October 2

The Media Defending the Indefensible

Speaking at The New Yorker Festival today, Tom Brokaw accused bloggers of attempting to "demonize" CBS and Rather. He said the criticism "goes well beyond any factual information." Is the man senile?

"What I think is highly inappropriate," he said, "is what is going on across the Internet, a kind of political jihad ... that is quite outrageous," the NBC anchor said at a panel on which all three men spoke.

In other words, when we catch the liberal press with its ... er... pants down... it's a jihad. Nevermind if the media perpetrates its own jihad; they can hide behind the First Amendment. One that comes immediately to mind is the intentional demonization of Alexander Haig when President Reagan was shot. Using selective quoting of the actual conversation at the White House, Ted Koppel accused Haig of saying he was "in charge at the White House." Video tapes of the entire context show that he said no such thing, but you can't get the media to admit that.

"I don't think you ever judge a man by only one event in his career," said Jennings, anchor on ABC. Sorry, Mr. Jennings but that wasn't the only "event" in Rather's career. Even after disclosure of his intentional "mistake" concerning the Bush papers, Rather said that the Berger story (Sandy Berger caught stealing documents from the National Archives) "was triggered by a carefully orchestrated leak about Berger..." Nevermind that it is true and that stealing is a felony and that national security was, by the nature of the documents taken, involved.

Just a few little examples of mistakes: Rather got in trouble with CBS when he refused to even report on the Chandra Levy scandal for 78 days. He called the Lewinski affair "a "so-called scandal." He has said that Clinton is "an honest man." In fact, Bill O'Reilly pointed out to him in an interview that Rather had mentioned unsubstantiated allegations of past drug use by George W. Bush more than twice as many times as it mentioned rape charges (substantated by NBC) against Clinton. When he was criticized for speaking at a Democratic fund raiser in Texas, Rather said, "I made an embarrassing and regrettable error in judgment by going to this event. It was a serious mistake, which I acknowledge. No one believes more strongly in CBS News standards than I do, and I have let those standards down." And that's just a small sample of Dan Rather's mistakes.

The American Press has too long been allowed to hide behind the First Amendment when it flagrantly and blatantly lies. The American public is going to have to insist that the media no longer hide behind unnamed sources and phrases like "a White House spokesman." Reporters like Jennings, Rather and Brokaw have too often broken the public's trust.

The First Amendment, by the way, says "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances." It doesn't say the Press can publish anything it wants to accomplish its political ends.

No, it's not a jihad, Mr. Brokaw. It's a loud, persistent demand for the accountability and truth in the media.

Kerry's Word

In the day of our Founding Fathers, honor was important in the character of a man. Men were careful about the oaths they took and they gave their lives rather than go back on their word.

When he joined the Navy, John Kerry took an oath. TheNavy Oath of Enlistment: "I, John Kerry, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So help me God."

That oath lasted just four months.

The President of the United States takes an oath, too. It's mandated by specified in Article II, Section 1, of the Constitution: "I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States."

Since it was so easy to go back on his word when he served in the Navy, I wonder how long it would take him to go back on it as President of the United States. His track record on keeping his word isn't very good.

Kerry's One Consistency

Campaigning today, President Bush said, "In the debate Senator Kerry said something revealing when he laid out the Kerry Doctrine. He said America has to pass a 'global test' before we can use American troops to defend ourselves. Senator Kerry's approach to foreign policy would give foreign governments veto power over our own national security decisions. I take a different view. When our country is in danger, the President’s job is not to take an international poll. The President’s job is to defend America. I work every day with our friends and allies for the sake of freedom and peace, but our national security decisions must be made in the Oval Office, not foreign capitals."

In that speech, President Bush touched on the one and only consistency in Sen. Kerry's 20 years of voting in the Senate and 2 years of campaign statements.

What the President was too polite to say is that Kerry has made this statement many times since it was first published as his quote in The Crimson when he was in college many years ago. Kerry said it a little differently then. He said if he was President, he would never take the country to war without the approval of international allies. It's interesting that he was thinking of running for president even then -- and it probably explains why he managed to take a movie camera to war so that he could be pictured in the jungles of Viet Nam. Of all the men I know who served in that war, not one brought home movies of himself in the war. But I digress.

Mr. Kerry's single committment to consistency is one of the most lethal (to our country) positions.

The Berger Question

Sandy Berger has been the National Security Advisor for the White House so he definitely should know better -- and he did. During Clinton's first term, he served as Deputy Assistant to the President in National Security Affairs. This guy knows his way around the block in Washington. Blindfolded.

So will you please tell me why this Doctor of Jurisprudence from Harvard Law accidentally walked out of the National Archives with top secret documents AFTER intentionally mis-directing the guards and hiding said papers in his pants (!), shoes and jacket?

Fox news reported "Some drafts of a sensitive after-action report on the Clinton administration's handling of Al Qaeda terror threats during the December 1999 millenium celebration are still missing, officials and lawyers said. Officials said the missing documents also identified America's terror vulnerabilities at airports and seaports."

How do they know what's missing? They don't: Look at the facts.
1. After Berger's first visit to the Archives, staff felt it necessary to mark the pages they allowed him to see because they noticed him hiding papers in his pants. He seems to have gotten away with some papers before they began to check on him.
2. He admits he "inadvertently" took at least 50 pages, some of which were his own notes, but all of which were supposed to have approved for removal by Archives staff.

The New York Sun wrote "It really doesn't matter now what was in the documents from the National Archives that Mr. Berger says he inadvertently misplaced. The evidence in the commission's report yesterday is more than enough to embarrass him thoroughly."

But the real point here isn't what embarrasses Berger, it's what was in the documents that he didn't return. He had access to any Archives documents he wanted. He obviously knew what he wanted, where it was, and how to hide any evidence of his theft.

There's no group in America more experienced in destroying and hiding evidence of wrongdoing than the Clinton Democrats. They have proved that again and again from WhiteWater to the White House.

The question isn't whether Berger's theft was due to negligence as Colbert King asked in the Washington Post, July 2004. The question is what were the documents and why was he willing to risk his reputation to get them and destroy them?

And another question is why isn't the media asking that question?

SunnyeWriter

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