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This WWII Marine was killed in the Pacific Theater. Now, 72 years later, ‘our boy is coming home.’

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H/T Washington Post. 

R.I.P  Pvt. Dale Robert Geddes , Welcome Home, Hand Salute.

Dale Geddes (Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency}

Dale Geddes (Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency}

Dale Geddes was killed in World War II during the Battle of Tarawa.

It was November 1943. He was 21 years old.

For more than 70 years, Geddes’s remains were buried on the island of Betio, where he was killed. As time passed, it looked as though they might never be found and returned to his family, according to a local newspaper report.

But in 2015, a group told authorities that it had discovered a burial site on that island in the Pacific, according to a news release from the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency.

The remains of several U.S. Marines were recovered at that site. And DNA testing has determined that Geddes was one of them.

“Dale is finally coming home,” Linda Elliott, a grandniece of Geddes,told the Grand Island Independent. “He is coming home to his parents. I know that I speak for the family to say that we are all very happy, very privileged, to witness the wishes of Dale’s parents and Dale’s siblings. Our boy is coming home.”

Staff Sgt. Kristen Duus of the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency told The Post in a phone interview that Geddes’s remains were identified through DNA analysis.

“We used mitochondrial DNA, which traces the maternal line,” she said. “So that matched a niece of his.”

Officials also used lab analysis, including dental records, and “circumstantial evidence,” she said.

“All which matched up to his records,” Duus said.

Geddes’s remains weren’t located during a remains recovery operation on the island in the late 1940s, Duus said, and Geddes was declared “non-recoverable.” Then, in 2015, a group called History Flight discovered a burial site on the island. That’s where the remains were located, Duus said.

“In July, they turned those remains over to us,” Duus said. “So he was one of 35 sets of remains that were returned to us last summer.”

The Battle of Tarawa lasted for a few days in November, but in that brief span, thousands were killed or wounded.

The Tarawa atoll, though small, was strategically important to the Americans who captured it. “If American bombers wanted to reach Japan, they would need an air base in the Mariana Islands; to capture the Marianas, they would first need the Marshall Islands; and for the Marshalls, they needed Tarawa,” Wil S. Hylton wrote for the New York Times Magazine in 2013.

The islands were heavily fortified, though. Thousands of Japanese troops had been sent there. Bunkers had been constructed, Hylton wrote, and cannons were on the beaches. The war correspondent Robert Sherrodwas with American forces that November and wrote about what he witnessed when the Marines disembarked.

In his New York Times Magazine piece, Hylton wrote:

They descended into amphibious landing vehicles and raced toward the beach, but the tide was out, and the water was too shallow for their boats. The Marines found themselves stranded on reefs, hundreds of yards offshore, wading through waist-high water as Japanese gunners mowed them down. Those lucky enough to reach the shore crawled through a maze of corpses. “No one who has not been there,” Sherrod wrote, “can imagine the overwhelming, inhuman smell of 5,000 dead who are piled and scattered in an area of less than one square mile.”

Later this month, Geddes will be buried next to his parents at a Nebraska cemetery, according to an online obituary. His family was told that he had died as he was “administering first aid to a buddy who was a fellow Marine,” the obituary states.

Here’s the Grand Island Independent, with more details about what happened:

The Battle of Tarawa took place on Nov. 20 through 23, 1943, as American troops fought to capture the island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands. About 1,000 Marines and sailors were killed, with another 2,000 wounded.

Geddes died sometime on the first day of the battle.

A March 17, 1944, article in The Grand Island Independent said Geddes “had removed first-aid materials from his kit and was about to bandage his buddy’s wounds when he was hit … probably by the same sniper who wounded his buddy.”

Geddes worked as a newspaper carrier in Grand Island, Neb., and later moved to Wyoming, where he continued to work for a local paper on the business side of the operation, according to the obituary. He enlisted in the Marine Corps Reserves in 1942, according to the Independent.

His burial service is scheduled for Aug. 22.

“We’re glad everyone can finally hear Dale’s story,” Elliott, Geddes’s grandniece, told the Independent. She called the news an “unexpected gift.”

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Honoring the heroic ‘Montford Pointers,’ the African American Marines the corps didn’t want

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H/T Washington Post.

I want to offer a Heart Felt Thank-you and God Bless You to the Montford Pointers.

Montford Pointers with a rare 90mm M1A1 anti-aircraft gun in background. (James LaPorta/ For The Washington Post)

CAMP JOHNSON, N.C  — “If it were a question on having a Marine Corps of 5,000 Whites or 250,000 Negroes, I would rather have the Whites.”

So said the U.S. Marine Corps’ 17th commandant, Gen. Thomas Holcomb, in May 1941 and then again in January 1942, one month after the attack on Pearl Harbor.

There would be “a definite loss of efficiency in the Marine Corps if we have to take Negroes.”

At the time, Holcomb and many senior officers at Headquarters Marine Corps stood in strong opposition to President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s 1941 executive order that established the Fair Employment Practices Commission, which opened the door to “full participation in the defense program by all persons regardless of color, race, creed or national origin.” Additionally, the order directed, “all departments of the government, including the Armed Forces,” to “lead the way in erasing discrimination over color or race.”

The Marine Corps would eventually succumb to political pressure from the White House and finally adhere to Roosevelt’s demands to start enlisting African Americans in June 1942.

For the first time since the Revolutionary War, the Marine Corps would put out a call to enlist 900 African American recruits between the ages of 19 and 29. Upon entering the military, “Colored” would be stamped upon their service record book and their enlistment contract, according to the History and Museums Division of the Marine Corps.

The Marine Corps would keep them segregated and establish a training base at Montford Point in North Carolina, today named Camp Johnson, after Marine Sgt. Maj. Gilbert “Hashmark” Johnson, so named for having more service stripes than rank stripes.

They would come to be known as the Montford Point Marines. Camp Johnson remains the only military base named after an African American.

Former Sgt. Leroy Pittman, 85, still remembers when he arrived at Montford Point in 1948 after dropping out of high school in Hartford, Conn. “It was tough. We had to build our own huts to live in. We spent weeks chopping down trees and dodging rattlesnakes. It wasn’t a joke.” Pittman said they were not allowed to ride in cars or go into town to eat. Harassment or arrest without cause was frequent from the Jacksonville Police Department, with locals threatening the black Marines to “not cross the railroad tracks in Jacksonville.”

Some 45 of the original “Montford Pointers” came together Friday for the unveiling of the first phase of the National Montford Point Marine Memorial in a ceremony at Lejeune Memorial Gardens, located just outside Marine Corps base Camp Lejeune.

The men sat in silence on the hot concrete, beneath barbershop-striped tents to shield them from the blistering Carolina sun, among the Chinese Pistache trees and 20,000 gold stars — each symbolizing a brother-in-arms.

The plastic water bottles went quickly as sweat seeped through the wool, cotton and polyester suits, dresses and military uniforms.

The men had traveled from all across the country, undeterred by age, faltering health and, for some, the inability to move under their own strength. But still, they came — just as they did seven decades ago.

At a time when the United States seems to be divided along racial, political and religious lines, these men of valor, once looked upon with disdain and hatred — found themselves being honored by four-star generals, officials from all levels of government and ordinary citizens gathered together to remember the sacrifices of the first African Americans admitted to a still-segregated Marine Corps during World War II.

There, the Marines, some donning their Congressional Gold Medals —  the highest civilian award bestowed by Congress, awarded to them in 2012 — were hailed as heroes and recognized for their service on the battlefields of World War II, Korea and Vietnam, as well as their courage in fighting bigotry and exclusion.

John White, 92, a former Marine corporal and the last of nine original black police officers hired by the Savannah Police Department in 1947, who would later guard a young Martin Luther King Jr. during the civil rights movement, remembers Holcomb’s Marine Corps.

John White (James LaPorta/For The Wasihington Post)

“General Thomas Holcomb, the 17th commandant of the Marine Corps, didn’t want us in the Marine Corps,” White told The Washington Post. “I still remember what he stated about us, that when he returned to this country and found ‘you people’ wearing our cherished globe and anchor [the Marine Corps emblem], I knew there was a war going on.”

For these men, the greatest challenge to overcome may not have been a Japanese bunker in the Pacific or, for others, a near-ambush from the People’s Army of Vietnam, but a Marine Corps that did not want them to serve at all.

Johnson would become one of the first African Americans to enlist in the Marine Corps and one of the first black drill instructors. He would retire in 1959 after 32 years of service in the Army, Navy and Marine Corps, according to the Montford Point Marine Museum.

Former Marine Corps commandant James Amos dedicates the memorial. (James LaPorta/For The Washington Post)

Gen. James F. Amos, a former Marine Corps commandant who retired from active duty in 2014 after 44 years of service, said in an interview after the dedication ceremony: “This is a prime example of the goodness of the United States of America. … There’s a part of our history, for our country and for the Marine Corps, that’s not so glorious. But you think about the 20,000 men who became Marines at Montford Point, of their willingness to sacrifice for our country — a country that’s still struggling with race today — these 20,000 men came forward despite the Marine Corps and a commandant not wanting them to come in.”

Amos said that despite the struggles of the Montford Point Marines, he has never met any of them who are resentful. “I look at [their struggles] and I have not met a single bitter one, not one. It’s just the opposite.”

“The lesson here, if we turn the clock forward to 2016, is that they’re a shining example for our nation on how things ought to be done and how people ought to be treated, from everything to equality of jobs to equality of treatment. … Just listen to the rhetoric from both political parties. [They] can learn a very powerful lesson from the Montford Point Marines.”

The “lesson” comes from men like retired first sergeant Barnett Person, a 1946 graduate of Montford Point. “We wanted to be the best. … We didn’t see color. … We just wanted to be Marines, to serve our country and our fellow brothers during a time of war, [regardless] if those Marines were white or black.”

Person would serve through Korea and in Vietnam, where he would save the life of retired first sergeant Jack McDowell, a 1946 Montford Point graduate who received the Purple Heart after being wounded by a 50-caliber round, resulting in the loss of his left leg.

We lost seven Marines that day. We had many wounded,” McDowell said.  As the senior enlisted Marine for Company G, Second Battalion, Ninth Marine Regiment out of Camp Lejeune, N.C., it was his job to account for the Marines killed or wounded in action. Between July 18 and 19 of 1967, his company came under heavy small arms fire and mortar and artillery bombardment.

Just as his unit was about to be overrun by forces from a North Vietnamese army regiment, Person, a tank commander, would come to McDowell’s rescue, according to documents released by the Marine Corps History Division. He would later receive the Silver Star and two Purple Hearts for actions in combat.

“I wouldn’t be alive if it wasn’t for Person,” McDowell said.

The 900 pound bronze statue that honors them stands 15 feet tall. Behind it sits a rare 90 mm M1A1 anti-aircraft gun, the primary weapon used by the 51st and 52nd Defense Battalions to which most Montford Point Marines were assigned after boot camp, according to retired Master Gunnery Sgt. James H. Carr, who serves as the national fundraising director for the Montford Point Marine Association.

“I’m grateful for the country and all the people for remembering us,” 1943 Montford Point graduate and former corporal Richard C. Davis said, “For honoring our sacrifices. It’s one of the proudest moments of my life,”

Now, for them, Montford Point is just a place — where training was tough and standards were high. And they’re not much for labels like the first black this or the first African American that.

For these war veterans — the old breed — if asked, they have but one preferred label: the title of Marine.

Staffer Who Set Up Clinton Server Gets Immunity

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This is from Newser.com.

Will the  result of the released information be an indictment being handed down against Hillary Clinton?

Or will Loretta Holder (Lynch) quash any indictments?

 

That’s bad news for Clinton, says one legal scholar.

(NEWSER) – The former State Department staffer who in 2009 set up Hillary Clinton’s private email server has been granted immunity in the investigation into whether classified information was mishandled, the Washington Post reports. Bryan Pagliano, who pleaded the Fifth before a congressional panel in September, will now cooperate with the FBI, a senior law enforcement official says. That’s bad news for Clinton, legal scholar Jonathan Turleytweets, saying the “DOJ does not give immunity without something valuable from a potential target like Bryan Pagliano. The situation just got more precarious.” The Clinton campaign had encouraged Pagliano to testify before Congress, the Post notes. A Clinton spokesman says he is “pleased” that Pagliano is now cooperating.

Though the Clinton camp has characterized the inquiry as a security review, officials close to the case say authorities are seeking to determine potential damage that could have resulted from classified information in the emails being exposed. “There was wrongdoing,” says a former senior law enforcement official. “But was it criminal wrongdoing?” The Clinton rep says the former secretary of state has been cooperating with investigators. Clinton has since acknowledged she should have used two email addresses—one for personal use and one for State Department business. She says “not doing so was a mistake.” A former federal prosecutor tells the Post that the upcoming election—and the possible perception of trying to influence it—creates an added wrinkle to the inquiry and any action that may result. “The timing is terrible whether you do it before or after,” he says.

Is deadly force legal if you HATE your attacker?

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This is from Second Call Defense.

I had never given this subject any thought.

It seems this is something every person that carries a firearm should know. 

 

When we talk about using deadly force legally, we generally define it like this:

Deadly force is justified only to prevent the imminent danger of death or great bodily harm.

So, you’re in your house minding your own business. A man bursts through the back door waving a machete. And you shoot him because you fear for your life. Pretty simple concept, right?

But what if in addition to fear you also feel “hatred” toward the person you shoot? Should that make any difference?

You’d think the answer would be no. But in a recent article in the Washington Post, Eugene Volokh considers a wrinkle in California law that could call into question the use of deadly force if you experience any emotions other than fear.

Are you guilty of murder, because you didn’t act based on your “fears alone,” but based on your reasonable fears plus some other motive? The conventional answer is no: The LaFave treatise, for instance, expressly says that if a defender “acts in proper self-defense, he does not lose the defense because he acts with some less admirable motive in addition to that of defending himself, as where he enjoys using force upon his adversary because he hates him.” The comment to Model Penal Code § 3.04, likewise states that self-defense “does not demand that [the belief of necessity of defensive action] be the sole motive of [the defendant’s] action,” because “an inquiry into dominant and secondary purposes would inevitably be far too complex.” See State v. King (Ariz. 2010).

But in California (and apparently Idaho), it appears that you would be guilty of murder. California, like all states, allows people to use deadly force to resist an attempt to kill, inflict serious bodily injury, rape, or commit some other very serious crimes. But Cal. Penal Code § 198 provides that,

the circumstances must be sufficient to excite the fears of a reasonable person, and the party killing must have acted under the influence of such fears alone.

That sounds a little crazy. So you might think that this is just a lone example of a poorly worded law. But California jury instructions say the same thing:

To justify taking the life of another in self-defense, the circumstances must be such as would excite the fears of a reasonable person placed in a similar position, and the party killing must act under the influence of those fears alone.

We can conjecture that the purpose of this law is to make sure that justifiable deadly force is limited to situations where someone is honestly defending themselves and can’t be applied to “revenge” killings or other circumstances.

However, Volokh provides a realistic example of how the law as worded could turn self defense into murder.

He gives the example of a woman in a relationship with a man who has raped or beaten her. The first time it happens, the woman doesn’t use deadly force even though she would have been justified in doing so. At a later time, the man admits that he has abused the woman’s daughter. When the man again attempts to rape or beat the woman, she uses deadly force because now in addition to fear, she also feels hatred toward the man and even perhaps a desire for revenge.

Common sense would suggest that the added emotions shouldn’t remove the justification for deadly force. However, according to Volokh, under California law, the woman would be guilty of murder because her emotions were no longer pure fear.

It’s yet another example of the difference between what is right and what is legal. In law, the devil is always in the details. Being “in the right” doesn’t always hold up in court.

Add to this the negative attitude many people have about firearms, and you can see why defending yourself with a gun poses tremendous risk that seems out of proportion. Defend yourself with a baseball bat and you probably won’t get in trouble with the law even if death is a result. Defend yourself with a gun in the exact same situation, and it’s a whole different ball game.

11 Things You Need to Know about Obama’s Exchange of the ‘Last American POW’ for 5 Gitmo Terrorists

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This is from Independent Journal Review.

If it is proven this punk deserted, he should be held accountable for the deaths of six of his fellow soldiers as well as desertion.

Once convicted, he needs to be shot.

 

 

Reports are flying around the president’s unilateral transfer of “the last American POW” in the Afghan War for 5 dangerous Gitmo prisoners.

Here are 11 stories that will give you a sense of the controversy and questions swirling around this news:

1. President Obama Almost Certainly Broke the Law

President Obama did not consult Congress when making the transfer of 5 Taliban commanders at Gitmo for Bowe Bergdahl.

The Washington Post raises questions about whether the president violated the law regarding terrorism policy:

Congressional Republicans and others focused on a series of concerns that are likely to reverberate in coming days: whether the deal breached U.S. policy forbidding negotiations with terrorists, whether sufficient safeguards were in place to ensure that the released Taliban prisoners do no further harm to the United States and whether Congress was informed about the prisoner trade, as required by law.

2. The 5 Taliban Commanders Released Were Among the Most Dangerous at Gitmo

Numerous publications note that these detained terrorists were among the worst at the facility. The Daily Beast gets to the point:

The five Guantanamo detainees released by the Obama administration in exchange for America’s last prisoner of war in Afghanistan, Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, are bad guys. They are top Taliban commanders the group has tried to free for more than a decade.

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According to a 2008 Pentagon dossier on Guantanamo Bay inmates, all five men released were considered to be a high risk to launch attacks against the United States and its allies if they were liberated.

3. Soldiers Who Served with Bergdahl are Making Claims He Was a Deserter

CNN’s Jake Tapper reports that soldiers who served with Bergdahl are calling him a “deserter,” not a “hero”:

“I was pissed off then and I am even more so now with everything going on,” said former Sgt. Matt Vierkant, a member of Bergdahl’s platoon when he went missing on June 30, 2009. “Bowe Bergdahl deserted during a time of war and his fellow Americans lost their lives searching for him.”

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Vierkant said Bergdahl needs to not only acknowledge his actions publicly but face a military trial for desertion under the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

4. Soldiers Who Served with Bergdahl Signed Non-Disclosure Agreements Not to Reveal What Happened

Again, from CNN’s Jake Tapper:

Many of Bergdahl’s fellow troops — from the seven or so who knew him best in his squad, to the larger group that comprised the 1st Battalion, 501st Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division — told CNN that they signed nondisclosure agreements agreeing to never share any information about Bergdahl’s disappearance and the efforts to recapture him.

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Some were willing to dismiss that document in hopes that the truth would come out about a soldier who they now fear is being hailed as a hero, while the men who lost their lives looking for him are ignored.

5. Bergdahl Reportedly Split Camp with Just a Few Survival Items

Jibing with what was reported earlier on IJReview, Bergdahl seemingly plannedleaving his platoon carefully:

According to first-hand accounts from soldiers in his platoon, Bergdahl, while on guard duty, shed his weapons and walked off the observation post with nothing more than a compass, a knife, water, a digital camera, and a diary.

6. Soldier Who Claims to Have Served with Bergdahl Says He Mailed His Valuables Back Mid-Tour

As reported by IJReview contributor Soopermexican, a soldier claims Bergdahl mailed back his valuables mid-tour.  Going by the moniker of @CodyFNFootball, he claims about Bergdahl:

“Why would someone pack all of there [sic] belongings and send them home in the middle of a 12 month deployment? Hmmmm.”

In addition, the soldier claims that Bergdahl bought an AK-47, a highly unusual choice for a U.S. soldier.

7. Six U.S. Soldiers Killed in Manhunt to Find the AWOL Soldier

As reported via Gateway Pundit:

PFC Matthew Michael Martinek, Staff Sgt. Kurt Robert Curtiss, SSG Clayton Bowen, PFC Morris Walker, SSG Michael Murphrey, 2LT Darryn Andrews, were all KIA from our unit who died looking for Bergdahl. Many others from various units were wounded or killed while actively looking for Bergdahl.

7. Bergdahl Reportedly Made Anti-American Statements

According to a Rolling Stone article written by the late writer Michael Hastings, Bergdahl complained about fellow soldiers and had anti-American things to say.

“I am ashamed to be an American. And the title of US soldier is just the lie of fools,” he concluded. “I am sorry for everything. The horror that is America is disgusting.”

8. The Highly Unusual Behavior of Bowe Bergdahl

Also corresponding with the story reported earlier here, Bergdahl dreamed about joining the French foreign legion, had an interest in fighting warlords in Darfur in Sudan, and also said he had a desire to become a mercenary.

9. Father Praises Allah; Has Pro-Islamic Tweets on Timeline

Regardless of what one thinks about Islam, it is quite a coincidence that Bowe’s father Robert Bergdahl’s Twitter account has pro-Islamic statements, along with tweets critical of Gitmo detainment.

At the press conference with President Obama announcing his son’s release,Robert Bergdahl said “Bismillah ir-Rahman ir-Rahim” —which means “In the name of Allah, most Gracious, most Compassionate.”

10. Robert Bergdahl Deletes Extremely Suspicious Tweet

As reported by IJReview contributor Soopermexican earlier, this is what Robert Bergdahl by all appearances deleted from his timeline:

bobbergdahl-deleted-tweet-death-american

11. CIA Station Chief in Kabul is “Outed” by the White House One Week Before Transfer

If numerous military members knew something was awry with the story about Bergdahl’s apparent capture by the Taliban, what would the CIA station chief in Kabul know? As the Washington Post reported:

The CIA’s top officer in Kabul was exposed Saturday by the White House when his name was inadvertently included on a list provided to news organizations of senior U.S. officials participating in President Obama’s surprise visit with U.S. troops.

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The White House recognized the mistake and quickly issued a revised list that did not include the individual, who had been identified on the initial release as the “Chief of Station” in Kabul, a designation used by the CIA for its highest-ranking spy in a country.

It is debatable that this uneven exchange serves the U.S.’ long-term national security interests, since it encourages our enemies around the world to take more American military members hostage.

Such reports also throw into question the claim that Bergdahl was a “hero” who was “captured on the battlefield,” and there are issues surrounding this exchange that are far from settled.

 

Republican Calls for More Federal Gun Control in Spite of Proof that Gun Control Laws Don’t Stop Mass Murder

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This is from Jan Morgan Media.

It is time to correct the record Peter(less)King is a RINO not  a true Republican.

King is attempting to punish gun owners for failure of the current laws not being enforced.

 

Rep. Peter King (R-NY) is calling for increased gun laws in the wake of the Isla Vista killing spree. (Of course King seems to have missed the fact that half of the the people who died in that mass murder were actually butchered by a knife, not shot with a gun.)
Rep. Peter T. King (R-N.Y.) said Sunday that Friday’s deadly rampage near the University of California at Santa Barbara underscores why expanded background checks for firearm sales are needed and said he hopes to pursue legislation to enhance mental health screening.

“This tragedy demonstrates once again the need to keep guns out of the hands of the mentally ill,” King said in an interview with The Washington Post.

King has never been thought of as being a friend to the Second Amendment. He supported passing additional federal gun control legislation and was one of the authors of last year’s failed universal background check legislation.
Apparently Rep. King isn’t familiar with California’s gun laws, otherwise he would know that:
* California already has universal background checks on private transactions.
* California already has a 10 day waiting period on firearms transfers.
* California already has a mental health database that is used to construct a list of prohibited persons.
* California already has magazine limits.
* California already limits the types of firearms that can be purchased and owned.
* In most areas of California, especially urban areas, concealed carry is all but banned.

NONE of those measures did anything to stop the Isla Vista killer, who, once again, also used a knife and his car as weapons in his crime spree.

According to the Washington Post,

King, who represents a suburban Long Island district and is one of the GOP’s most prominent gun-control advocates, also pushed Republicans to buck powerful gun rights groups.

“Even though this issue may not be popular in particular congressional districts, if we want to be a national party, we ought to be looking closely at it,” he said.


Read more at http://janmorganmedia.com/2014/05/republican-calls-federal-gun-control-spite-proof-gun-control-laws-dont-stop-mass-murder/#6CG3EldZsyceKkUH.99

Joe Biden: Republicans will ‘further damage’ the middle class

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This is from The Washington Examiner.

I am surprised the DemocRats would let Crazy Uncle Joe Biden out to make speeches.

Especially with the midterm elections so close.

Knowing  how big of a gaff machine Crazy Uncle Joe can be.

 

 

Vice President Joe Biden used a speech at George Washington University to blame Republicans for the country’s income inequality and argue that the House Republican budget would only exacerbate the disparity.

In blunt terms, Biden told students that the Republican Party has shifted over the years and its current policies set forth in the budget created by Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., make it tougher, not easier, for middle-class workers and families.

“Show me your budget, I will tell you what you value, my dad would say. What they clearly value, this new Republican Party, is more tax cuts for the wealthy at the expense of the middle class,” Biden said.

The Ryan budget calls for cutting key domestic programs by about 15 percent and an additional $5.7 trillion in tax cuts — the vast majority of which Biden said “goes into the bank accounts of the very wealthy.”

Before Biden’s remarks were over, Republicans were already pushing back. Brendan Buck, a spokesman for House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, accused the vice president of “lashing out” to distract from stubbornly high unemployment rates.

“This administration has overseen the worst economic recovery in our history and has a budget that never balances, ever — and hysterical attacks from Joe Biden won’t change that,” Buck said.

A House Budget Committee spokesman said the GOP budget plan balances the budget and helps create jobs.

“…The administration doesn’t have much to brag about,” he said. “Now all they’ve got left are baseless attacks and stale rhetoric.”

Based on analysis from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, Obama’s plan would increase spending by $1.1 trillion and raise taxes by nearly $1.4 trillion over the next 10 years. It would never balance and would the U.S. would still be running a $746 billion deficit in fiscal year 2024.

True to form, Biden sprinkled his speech with several rhetorical questions and at times underscored his point with a “my lord” or “c’mon.”

At one point, Biden used an Oldsmobile ad from 20 years ago to try to prove that the Republican Party today does not understand most middle-class problems.

“There used to be an ad 20 years ago when they made Oldsmobiles, and they said, this is not your father’s Oldsmobile,” he said. “This is not your father’s Republican Party.”

Although the plain language made some of the speech seem spontaneous, parts of it leaked to the Washington Post early Monday morning in a story claiming Biden’s remarks are aimed at reprising the Democrats 2012 election strategy of trying to frame Republicans as out of touch with middle-class voters.

GOP donors reportedly working to draft Jeb Bush for 2016 presidential run

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This is from Fox News.

I say “Oh Hell No to Jeb the RINO Bush as well as Chris Crispy Cream Christie.We need a rock solid Conservative presidential candidate.

 

 

A group of top Republican donors have reportedly begun an intense effort to draft former Florida governor Jeb Bush into the race for the GOP presidential nomination in 2016.

Washington Post report quotes one major donor as saying that the “vast majority” of the top 100 givers to 2012 GOP nominee Mitt Romney would back Bush in a nomination fight.

The report also claims that a hard press has begun to get Bush into the race because conservative leaders and longtime Republican operatives are concerned about the electoral viability of New Jersey governor Chris Christie and Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul. Christie’s standing and poll numbers, both nationally and among Republicans, have been damaged by the ongoing investigation into whether he knew of access lane closures to the George Washington Bridge ordered by his staff as apparent political retaliation.

On the other hand, Paul’s libertarian views on matters like surveillance by the National Security Agency and his perceived softness on foreign policy has also raised red flags in the GOP establishment. Paul’s victories in straw polls at the Conservative Political Action Conference and the Northeast Republican Leadership Conference earlier this month may also have been a factor in the renewed push for a Bush candidacy.

Earlier this week, Bush met privately with casino magnate and GOP donor Sheldon Adelson and addressed the Republican Jewish Coalition’s senior members at a dinner held Thursday at Adelson’s company airport hangar. The Post, citing a donor in attendance at the dinner, reported that the crowd of about 60 guests applauded when one told Bush, “I hope you run for President in 2016.”

Bush, the brother of former President George W. Bush and the son of former President George H.W. Bush, served two terms as governor of Florida between 1999 and 2007. After leaving office, his name was put forward as a possible Senate candidate in 2010 and a presidential candidate in 2012. However, despite the rumors, Bush has remained out of political life.

Bush’s advisers told The Post that the former governor was not actively exploring a candidacy and would not make a decision on running until the end of this year.

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‘We need the iPhone of guns’: Will smart guns transform the gun industry?

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This is from the Washington Post.

Let me think I can buy a .22 cal pistol for  $1,798 dollars plus tax for a gun and watch or I can buy a Glock.40 cal. for $600.00.

The decision is a no brainer I would buy the Glock .40 cal.

Do not get me wrong I am not putting the .22 down but if I had a choice I want the fire power of the .40 cal.

They call this gun the iPhone of guns just look at how quickly the iPhone has been comprised.

I could what “IF” you to boredom with the list of things that could cause this gun to malfunction.

 

One of California’s largest firearm stores recently added a peculiar new gun to its shelves. It requires an accessory: a black waterproof watch.

The watch’s primary purpose is not to provide accurate time, though it does. The watch makes the gun think. Electronic chips inside the gun and the watch communicate with each other. If the watch is within close reach of the gun, a light on the grip turns green. Fire away. No watch means no green light. The gun becomes a paperweight.

A dream of gun-control advocates for decades, the Armatix iP1 is the country’s first smart gun. Its introduction is seen as a landmark in efforts to reduce gun violence, suicides and accidental shootings. Proponents compare smart guns to automobile air bags — a transformative add-on that gun owners will demand. But gun rights advocates are already balking, wondering what happens if the technology fails just as an intruder breaks in.

James Mitchell, the “extremely pro-gun” owner of the Oak Tree Gun Club, north of Los Angeles, isn’t one of the skeptics. His club’s firearms shop is the only outlet in the country selling the iP1. “It could revolutionize the gun industry,” Mitchell declared.

The implications of the iP1’s introduction are potentially enormous, both politically and economically. (And culturally — the gun that reads James Bond’s palm print in “Skyfall ” is no longer a futuristic plot twist.)

Lawmakers around the country have been intrigued by the possibilities. New Jersey passed a hotly contested law in 2002 requiring that only smart guns be sold in the state within three years of a smart gun being sold anywhere in the country. A similar measure made it through the California Senate last year, and at the federal level, Rep. John F. Tierney (D-Mass.) also has introduced a mandate.

Although National Rifle Association officials did not respond to requests for comment about smart-gun technology, the group fiercely opposes “government mandates that require the use of expensive, unreliable features, such as grips that would read your fingerprints before the gun will fire,” according to the Web site of its lobbying arm, the Institute for Legislative Action. “And NRA recognizes that the ‘smart guns’ issue clearly has the potential to mesh with the anti-gunner’s agenda, opening the door to a ban on all guns that do not possess the government-required technology.”

Even so, smart guns are potentially more palatable than other technological mandates, such as placing GPS tracking chips in guns, a controversial concept floated this session in the Maryland General Assembly.

The arrival of smart-gun technology comes amid a flurry of interest in the concept from investors who think the country — after the killings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., and the brutal legislative battles that followed — is ready for new, innovative gun-control ideas. Last month, Ron Conway , a Silicon Valley titan and early investor in Google and Facebook, launched a $1 million X Prize-like contest for smart-gun technology.

“We need the iPhone of guns,” Conway said, noting how the new iPhone 5s can be unlocked quickly with a fingerprint. “The entrepreneur who does this right could be the Mark Zuckerberg of guns. Then the venture capitalists like me will dive in, give them capital, and we will build a multibillion-dollar gun company that makes safe, smart guns.”

A variety of approaches are in development. Armatix, the German company behind the iP1, uses RFID chips, which can be found on anti-theft tags attached to expensive clothing. Trigger­Smart, an Irish company, also uses RFID chips, though with a ring instead of a watch. The company also has technology that would render guns inoperable if they approached electronic markers — for instance, near a school.

The New Jersey Institute of Technology is using sensors to recognize users’ grips and grasping behaviors. Kodiak Arms, a Utah company, is taking ­pre-orders for its Intelligun, which is unlocked with fingerprints. Other companies are using voice recognition. Yardarm, a California start-up, uses a smartphone app to notify gun owners of a weapon’s movement. Users can even remotely disable their weapons.

Smart guns, advocates say, will have huge appeal to buyers. “If you have two cars, and one has an air bag and one doesn’t, are you going to buy the one without the air bag?” said Belinda Padilla, president of Armatix’s U.S. operation. “It’s your choice, but why would you do that?”

Return of a historical relic

Personalizing or modifying handguns for safety is actually an old idea. In 1886, after D.B. Wesson, a co-founder of Smith & Wesson, heard about a child injured with a gun, the company introduced a revolver with a special lever that made the gun operational. The product became nothing more than a historical relic.

Over the years, the idea of making guns smart waxed and waned, until a serious effort began in the early 1990s. Stephen Teret, a public health expert at Johns Hopkins University, commissioned undergraduate engineering students to build what turned out to be a crude smart gun activated by a ring. Later in the decade, the federal government researched smart guns to protect police officers whose weapons were taken in struggles.

In 2000, after Colt quietly worked on smart-gun technology, Maryland Gov. Parris N. Glendening (D) tried and failed to pass legislation mandating smart guns in the state. His effort was lauded by President Bill Clinton, whose administration struck a deal with Smith & Wesson to research the technology. But the backlash by gun owners and the NRA against the company was brutal, and Smith & Wesson’s business tanked.

The debate then over whether the technology was ready and reliable, and whether it would actually make a difference, has turned into the current burst of interest. But some of the sharpest criticism comes from an unlikely corner — the Violence Policy Center, a staunch advocate of reducing gun violence.

Policy Center officials argue that the new technology is unlikely to stem gun homicides, which often occur between people who know each other, and that personalization will have no effect on the more than 300 million guns in circulation. The organization also questions whether the technology would deter the nearly 350,000 incidents of firearm theft per year, though some of the proposed technologies are add-ons that can be installed on existing guns.

And perhaps most important, the Violence Policy Center worries that smart guns will increase the number of firearm owners, because marketing that touts safety could sway those previously opposed to guns to make their first purchase.

“We are very skeptical of what this technology can accomplish,” said Josh Sugarmann, the organization’s executive director. “You’re really affecting a very small portion of the gun-buying public.”

Proponents of smart guns dispute the criticism. They point to studies that hint at potentially significant reductions in gun deaths, particularly high-profile ones among children. In 2010, children under 18 accounted for 98 of the 606 unintentional or accidental firearm deaths in the United States. A smart gun, proponents say, could prevent those deaths.

As for school shootings, a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study in 2003 analyzing firearms used by students in 323 school-related shootings found that 37 percent of the guns came from the shooter’s home and 23 percent from a friend or relative. A smart gun could prevent those deaths, too, advocates say.

“These guns are not going to rescue us from the 32,000 gun deaths a year,” Teret said, “but they are going to materially reduce gun deaths in the United States.”

Will they sell?

The question is: How many people will buy smart guns?

There are dueling statistics on the issue. Teret and other smart-gun proponents point to a 1997 survey showing that 71 percent of Americans — and 59 percent of gun owners — favored personalization of all new handguns. Gun rights advocates, including the National Shooting Sports Foundation, cite a survey the group commissioned last year showing that only 14 percent of Americans would consider buying a smart gun.

Statistics, of course, can be interpreted many ways, and at least one smart-gun entrepreneur saw the 14 percent as a positive sign. “I thought that was actually a huge number,” said Robert McNamara, co-founder of Trigger­Smart, the Irish company using RFID chips. “There is no doubt that a lot of people would buy these guns if they are available.”

The cost is high. Amatrix’s iP1, a .22-caliber pistol, is priced at $1,399 — plus $399 for the watch. A .40-caliber Glock handgun can be had for about $600.

The chief concern for potential buyers is reliability, with 44 percent of those polled by the National Shooting Sports Foundation saying the technology would not be reliable at all. A commenter in an online Glock forum explained the concern this way: “They can’t even make a cellphone that works reliably when you need it, and some dumbass thinks he can make a reliable techno-gadget gun that is supposed to safeguard you in dire circumstances?”

Twenty minutes later someone responded: “You bet your life.”

Teret and others point to now-commonplace safety enhancements that Americans were skeptical about at first: air bags and smoke detectors. “They thought the air bag would kill them,” said Teret, who did early work on air-bag technology. “They thought it would shove them out the back window, that it would explode. It takes awhile to dispel these mythologies.”

Some gun rights champions are in surprising agreement with gun-control advocates on the technology’s future.

“We think the market should decide,” said Lawrence G. Keane, general counsel for the National Shooting Sports Foundation.

Conway, out in Silicon Valley, said: “You let the free enterprise system take over. Just like everyone opted into the iPhone and abandoned the flip phone and BlackBerry, consumers will vote with their feet. We want gun owners to feel like they are dinosaurs if they aren’t using smart guns.”

WAPO FACT CHECKER GIVES DICK DURBIN’S OBAMACARE CLAIMS FOUR PINOCCHIOS

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This is from Breitbarts Big Journalism.

I did not need the Washington Post to tell me that little Dickie Durbin is a liar.

When little Dickie Durbin’s lips are moving he is lying.

 

During Sunday’s Meet the Press, Illinois Democrat Senator Dick Durbin made the wild claim that ten million new Americans have found insurance coverage thanks to Obamacare. He also claimed that Obamacare would lower the deficit. But even The Washington Post fact checker had to give Durbin’s spin its worst rating of four Pinocchios.

As the Sunday, February 5th discussion shifted to health care, host Bob Schieffer pointed out that Obamacare is still confusing nearly everyone, and he asked Senator Durbin if there is “any hope of getting it straightened out.”

Durbin kicked into high spin with his answer.

“Bob, let’s look at the bottom line,” Durbin said. “The bottom line is this. Ten million Americans have health insurance today who would not have had it without the Affordable Care Act–10 million.”

That wasn’t all the spin Durbin had to offer: “And we can also say this. It is going to reduce the deficit more than we thought it would. We were seeing a decline in the growth of the cost of health care, exactly our goal in passing this original legislation. I’m finding people, as I go across Illinois, who, for the first time in their lives, have an opportunity for affordable health insurance for their families.

“Now, there are many Republicans who are wishing that this fails, hoping they can find any shred of evidence against it,” he claimed. “But we had a bad rollout. Let’s concede that point. Since then, we are gaining steam. And I think, ultimately, we’re going to find you can’t go back. You have to extend the health insurance protection to the 25 million, 30 million Americans who will ultimately have it, and we’ll be a better nation for it.

All of this is simply untrue.

To start with, the recent CBO report did not in any way say that Obamacare would bring down the deficit. On the contrary, the report said that the deficit will rise uncontrollably after 2015.

As to the millions Durbin claimed have gotten new healthcare coverage, the Post fact checker noted, “Durbin appears to be combining two figures released by the administration,” and neither number is true.

The paper pointed out that the number pushed by the White House, that 6.3 million have gotten new insurance under Obamacare, is impossible to substantiate because there is no way to know if those who tried to sign up actually got an insurance policy and began paying premiums. The White House is making claims that it simply cannot prove, and Durbin parroted these empty claims.

The paper went on to state that about all one can say is that the number of people who signed up and got new health insurance is no more than 4 million, and even that estimate is “extraordinarily generous.”

Finally, the Post criticized Durbin, stating he “has little excuse for going on national television and claiming that every one of these people had been previously uninsured. This has now become a Four Pinocchio violation.”

Senator Durbin, however, is undaunted in his outlandish claims. After The Washington Post published its fact check, his office replied to the criticism:

Fact check after fact check has confirmed that more than 9 million Americans have signed up for private health insurance or Medicaid coverage through Affordable Care Act. Many of the more than 9 million Americans are being covered for the first time. No matter the number of new enrollees, there is no question that the law is working and millions of people are realizing the benefits of affordable health coverage and the protections it guarantees.

In reply, the paper noted that it is “unaware of any fact checks that have confirmed these figures as all ACA enrollments or evidence that ‘many’ of the enrollees are being covered for the first time.”

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