Archives for category: Glorifying military service

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No disability required here: Veteran’s parking spaces

I think this may be some sort of post-Vietnam guilt at work. The guilt doesn’t seem to work towards ending decades of undeclared/unwon wars overseas.

Pro sports almost worships The Troops these days. Halftime sports announcers tell us that overseas military operations are somehow about American rights and freedoms.

I grew up in the 60s and 70s. Veterans were all around- church, school, Boy Scout leaders, family, the neighborhood, etc. It was all just an average thing. These folks weren’t seen as a separate part of American society.

People weren’t stepping over to say “Thanks for your service” to my Dad- who did time in the Navy in the 50s- but looked just like anyone else out in public.

These guys weren’t lining up for free dinner promotions marketed by major restaurant chains.

The worst of it is individuals who claim that Americans wouldn’t have the freedom to post comments on newspaper websites if people had not given their lives in Iraq and Afghanistan to protect that freedom.

Hey school teachers- where did this idea come from? Were US troops sent to Vietnam so that Americans could be free to send letters to the editor?

Is there any case in which the US Armed Forces have been sent to distant lands on a mission to protect freedom of speech?

Is protecting freedom of speech even part of training scenarios?

If The Troops are fighting for your freedom to share ideas on the web- why would you be scolded for doing so?

More here:

Glorifying military service

Memorial Day- long weekend/BBQ guilt trips

Troops on the street?

 

Discuss on facebook here:

US Department of Credibility

Or here:

Our free and independent press has stopped asking questions.

 

 

 

Photo: Oak Harbor scene

 

 

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Ongoing militarization of American culture-

Can’t watch a football game anymore without seeing at least a couple ads that get down on hands and knees to worship The Troops.

Just go out and buy the proper retail items- then stop asking questions and it’s all good.

0:50 “These are the men and women that allow us to enjoy the daily freedoms in the United States.”

Because freedom comes from decades of undeclared/unwon wars overseas, a 3rd try in Iraq, a no-show on 911, etc.

Watch the game and see ads by beers that support the troops, soft drinks that support the troops, auto manufacturers that support the troops, insurance providers that support the troops, defense contractors that sponsor the team, etc. It’s all meant to be a normal part of a consumer-driven lifestyle.

 

What do we have here?

Public/military resources used as a marketing stunt for the entertainment and insurance industries- newspeople play along with free TV advertising-

Video:

Seahawks change of command at JBLM

It would be nice to see some of the sponsors advocate for phasing out decades of undeclared/unwon wars overseas, but that would be in conflict with current marketing strategies.

 

I think this may be some sort of post-Vietnam guilt at work. The guilt doesn’t seem to work towards ending decades of undeclared wars overseas.

Pro sports almost worships The Troops these days. Halftime sports announcers tell us that overseas military operations are somehow about American rights and freedoms.

I grew up in the 60s and 70s. Veterans were all around- church, school, Boy Scout leaders, family, the neighborhood, etc. It was all just an average thing. These folks weren’t seen as a separate part of American society.

People weren’t stepping over to say “Thanks for your service” to my Dad- who did time in the Navy in the 50s- but looked just like anyone else out in public.

These guys weren’t lining up for free Veteran’s Day dinner promotions marketed by major restaurant chains.

The worst of it is individuals who claim that Americans wouldn’t have the freedom to post comments on newspaper websites if people had not given their lives in Iraq and Afghanistan to protect that freedom.

Hey school teachers– where did this idea come from? Were US troops sent to Vietnam so that Americans could be free to send letters to the editor?

Is there any case in which the US Armed Forces have been sent to distant lands on a mission to protect freedom of speech?

Is protecting freedom of speech even part of training scenarios?

 

Low voter turnout is a disgrace?

Both major parties are OK with ongoing, undeclared/unwon wars overseas, the drug war racket, & a secretive, wasteful and ineffective Dept. of Homeland Security.

How exactly are people to vote their way out of this?

 

 

Discuss on facebook here:

Local reporters will not question the US Border Patrol at Port Angeles?

Or here:

US Department of Credibility

 

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New group identity for veterans-

Go and see how much free stuff you can get this weekend.

Veteran’s Day 2014:

Huge number of comments Re: what sort of ID is proper to get free & discounted stuff-

Where are the veterans who don’t want free meals, discounts, head of the line privileges at the airport, etc.

Meet some veterans who have become disgruntled Re: discount availability:

“Home Depot No Longer Honors all Veterans”

Well done guys.

 

The Veteran’s Day federal holiday was signed into law during the Cold War.

The US had then entered into a long period of involvement in undeclared/unwon wars overseas.

Hey school teachers– if the wars aren’t won- how can they protect our freedom?

Hey school teachers- whatever happened to the more meaningful Armistice Day?

Related:

Veterans

How Many Wars?

Freedom

Glorifying military service

Upcoming football games-

Memorial Day- long weekend/BBQ guilt trips

Veteran’s parking spaces?

Hero?

Fought and died to defend our freedom?

Press, military, entertainment industry & big business partnership

Ongoing militarization of American culture: Troops on the street?

 

Discuss on facebook here:

US Department of Credibility

 

 

 

Photo- South Indian Island

 

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Why Do We Keep Thanking the Troops?
Rory Fanning

Starbucks Chairman Howard Schultz has said of the upcoming Concert for Valor:

“The post-9/11 years have brought us the longest period of sustained warfare in our nation’s history. The less than one percent of Americans who volunteered to serve during this time have afforded the rest of us remarkable freedoms—but that freedom comes with a responsibility to understand their sacrifice, to honor them and to appreciate the skills and experience they offer when they return home.”

 

Since 911- US military operations have afforded the rest of us remarkable freedoms?

Because freedom comes from decades of undeclared/unwon wars overseas, a 3rd try in Iraq, a no-show on 911, etc.

Almost Veteran’s Day again-

Look for folks claiming that Americans wouldn’t have the freedom to post comments on newspaper websites if people had not given their lives in Iraq and Afghanistan to protect that freedom.

Hey school teachers- where did this idea come from? Were US troops sent to Vietnam so that Americans could be free to send letters to the editor?

Is there any case in which the US Armed Forces have been sent to distant lands on a mission to protect freedom of speech?

Is protecting freedom of speech even part of training scenarios?

 

Reaching for an honest understanding of US foreign policy makes more sense than “Thanks for your service.”

Don’t look for much in the way of explaining the meaning of Armistice Day & why that was thrown out for the purpose of honoring veterans.

 

More here:

Memorial Day- long weekend/BBQ guilt trips

Upcoming football games-

 

Discuss on facebook here:

US Department of Credibility

 

 

 

Photo- A symbol of freedom & federal government credibility

 

 

DSC_0002_005Kirkland-

Video- Kirkland rejects plan to put 9/11 memorial in park

Four images of “the heroes of 911” are featured in the memorial. One is is a member of the military.

What role did the US Armed Forces play on 911?

 

Issaquah-

“The Spirit of America sculpture was also rejected by the city of Issaquah this month, in part because there wasn’t enough time to consider it before a June 18 application deadline with the foundation, said city spokeswoman Autumn Monahan.”

 

State Capitol-

Video- State Capitol campus rejects 9/11 memorial

 

Maybe the folks who don’t want the memorial are looking past the symbolism, ceremony & emotion towards what has gone on in Washington State during the War on Terror.

 

Welcome Home Troops

US Dept. of Homeland Security Port Angeles, WA-

Sentries & watchstanders unable to prevent lone bumbler from penetrating US Coast Guard base- then smoking marijuana in the CO’s quarters aboard 210-foot cutter Active- not to be discovered until hours later at morning colors.

 

Sensitive Dept. of Homeland Security documents released to the public at a garage sale:

The Garage Sale Incident

 

Massing US Border Patrol agents at the southern edge of the Strait of Juan de Fuca fails to keep heroin out of Port Angeles:

Sept, 2012

Border Patrol cuts ribbon for new $11.9 million facility in Port Angeles

May, 2013

Heroin epidemic gripping Port Angeles

Still no justification provided by elected officials or the US Border Patrol for an upgrade in staff requiring a new, $11.9 million, 50 agent facility.

Secret arrest statistics, denied FOIA requests, heroin in the community & a Border Patrol whistleblower investigation that resulted in further suppression of information- keep the focus on asking questions in these areas.

News links & documentation here:

News tip/story idea

 

Suspicionless checkpoints and bus boardings- away from border crossings and ports of entry:

Saying No to the federal government

 

Suspicionless local ID checks?

 

DHS Grant Money comes to Washington State

 

At the federal level:

Cost of scramble to solve VA’s waiting-time crisis: $54 billion yearly

 

Related:

A post 911 Puget Sound area

 

Discuss on facebook here:

Local reporters will not question the US Border Patrol at Port Angeles?

Or here:

US Department of Credibility

 

 

 

Photo- A symbol of freedom & federal government credibility

 

DSC_0084Look for halftime sports announcers to remind us that The Troops are overseas fighting for American rights & freedoms.

Watch for live shots of troops gathered on distant bases cheering on the entertainment industry.

The US is not in the habit of winning decades of undeclared wars overseas- why would we think they have any bearing on American rights and freedoms?

Related-

Glorifying military service

Discuss on facebook here.

 

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Nasty Notes & Veterans Parking

 

Went to Home Depot today & noticed veteran’s parking spaces near the front of the store.

There is no possibility that I would use one of these spots.

I think it is strange that modern American culture sees veterans as separate & different from the rest of society.

I don’t think this was the case in the 60s and 70s- when it seemed like veterans in the community were seen as more of an average thing.

Not looking for head of the line privileges over here.

 

Meet some veterans who have become disgruntled Re: discount availability:

“Home Depot No Longer Honors all Veterans”

Well done guys.

 

Today- most Americans can repeat the “Thanks for your service” slogan and move on without having to involve themselves or family members in decades of undeclared wars in distant lands. This is just the way politicians want it.

If there is any quiet sense of guilt among politicians or people who never did time in uniform about all that- it can be cleared up by thanking The Troops for protecting American rights and freedoms, supporting The Troops, giving them discounts, being cool with them wearing field uniforms in public, not questioning wars that aren’t won, etc.

Spending just a few moments at major sporting events honoring the troops covers for cutting benefits for those who hung in for multiple tours in Iraq.

Discuss on facebook here.

 

 

Photo- Local harvest.

 

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It is unfortunate that the American people seem to want to support the troops, but lack a basic understanding of public policy related to the troops.

To be fair- public policy in this area can be confusing- even to people who did time in uniform.

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This confusing article seems to indicate that people in highly respected and specialized units, or people involved in high-profile operations would be eligible for a different benefit package than the average people who were in average units over the years. Investigative reporters may not have had a clear understanding of public policy in this case.

A less confusing update here.

 

This very popular marketing device for a US auto manufacturer is not connected in any way to public policy:

Take a look at comments below the video and you will see that people truly feel connected to supporting the troops by watching a made for TV car commercial.

 

The First Lady has made an effort to support military families. Unfortunately- these efforts appear to be completely unrelated to public policy.

Here is a hand selected lady who was surprised (1:12) to get a phone call of support from The First Lady- even though cameras were rolling in her home when the phone rang:

 

No definite benefit package is offered for people who stay for 20 years in the US Armed Forces.

Honest management of public information could improve the situation.

 

Many Americans may associate free medical care with people who stay for 20 years in the US Armed Forces.

Recommendation-

Insert language into recruiting literature and enlistment documents stating that rules concerning benefits may change at any time & that no definite benefit package will be provided in exchange for 20 years of unrestricted worldwide service. No grandfather clause will apply. Have unit leaders refer to this disclaimer when promoting retention drives, giving re-enlistment speeches, etc.

Stop spending federal money on meaningless support the troops promotions, campaigns and VIP photo ops that are not connected in any way with public policy.

Background here:

Thanks for your Service

Related-

No Draft

 

I am no longer recommending the US Armed Forces to young people.

I would have- maybe 10 years ago.

 

What’s changed in the past 10 years?

$60 billion in DOD contracting fraud.

Multiple tours for the National Guard in Iraq and Afghanistan while benefits are cut back.

Heroin inbound.

 

Security Theater

Harpist on Port Townsend-Keystone ferry silenced after 17 years

“State ferries officials say they had no choice but to fairly enforce security policies that were stepped up in the aftermath of terrorist attacks on the East Coast on Sept. 11, 2001.”

Security policies?

The Washington State Patrol uses dogs to check vehicles at some ferry terminals on some days. Walk-on passengers are not checked at any terminal- at any time.

 

Puget Sound port security-

Doublespeak?

July, 2012-

Port security: U.S. fails to meet deadline for scanning of cargo containers

April, 2006-

“CBP screens 100 percent of all maritime containers that pose a risk for terrorism at foreign ports before they are shipped to the United States.”

If a 100% screening was conducted at the foreign port- how did human cargo make it to downtown Seattle?

More here:

Making sense of the War on Terror-

 

What sort of ID is required to prove innocence away from border crossings and ports of entry?

“… their main interaction with the boating public: Boarding boats and checking for ID, getting a “vibe,” as Jeff P. called it, for what’s up.” 

“But another audience member noted that her husband, while fishing, was checked out in one day by the Coast Guard, state Department of Fish and Wildlife, the Sheriff’s Department and Border Patrol.

“That seems ridiculous if all you’re doing is fishing,” she said.”

 

More here:

Suspicionless local ID checks?

 

Troop suicides.

 

Sensitive Dept. of Homeland Security documents released to the public at a garage sale-

Question to ask:

How do sensitive DHS documents leave the workplace without being signed out for official business?

“We would like to thank the U.S. Attorney’s Office and Homeland Security Investigations for their hard work, commitment and dedication to this case” said Chief Patrol Agent John Bates of the U.S. Border Patrol, Blaine Sector.

More here:

The Garage Sale Incident

 

Secret arrest statistics

US Border Patrol- secret arrest statistics on Washington’s Olympic Peninsula

Nov 2011- “The report is always limited to one page regardless of the number of arrests made, includes only those arrests selected by the agency for public release and does not include apprehensions that result in ongoing investigations.”

Sounds like something out of the Soviet Union.

A free and independent press plays no role here in questioning public policy- simply passing down dictates from above.

So, if this guy is arrested it might be done in secret if the one page report is already full, the arrest is not selected by the agency for public release or is an apprehension that results in an ongoing investigation?

 

Suspicionless checkpoints on Washington’s Olympic Peninsula- away from border crossings and ports of entry-

Border Patrol checkpoints came to Jefferson County, WA in 2008.

 

“Federal law allows the border patrol to conduct the checkpoints and stop and talk with any motorist and passenger of any vehicle, said Deputy Chief Patrol Agent Joseph Giuliano.”

“No cause is needed to converse with anyone in the car,” Giuliano said. “Zero, zilch.”

 

A month later-

We are told the #1 US Border Patrol objective is to stop terrorists.

The US Border Patrol explains this objective at a local public forum- this YouTube video covers Border Patrol objectives at 3:50

At that same forum a lady asked:

“What is the penalty for not identifying oneself to federal agents at an internal, suspicionless checkpoint?”

US Border Patrol said they would call in the Sheriff when a person refused to identify themselves.

Sheriff says they will not respond to a non-emergency situation involving a person peaceably refusing to interact with federal agents.

Question about providing ID is at 0:35

Checkpoints ended here in 2008- possibly due to well-informed citizens and local protests. Looks like they weren’t vital to national security after all.

War on Terror- credibility squandered.

More here:

Good luck with your all-volunteer military

 

 

Photo- Port Hadlock Transit Center

 

Is the freedom talk from politicians just for federal holidays and overseas military operations?

 

Marijuana/election update:

DEA Responds to Legal Weed in Colorado and Washington: “Enforcement of the Controlled Substances Act remains unchanged”

Justice Department: Federal marijuana law ‘unchanged’ by legalization

2 states legalize pot, but don’t ‘break out the Cheetos’ yet

Washington State Governor Gregoire not joining Colorado’s chat with Justice Department on pot legalization

She took orders from the federal government last time the issue came up:

Gregoire vetoes some medical marijuana reforms

 

Surely our US Senators and members of The US House of Representatives will press the issue in DC?

 

Liquor Board: It will take a year to set up rules for a marijuana sales system in the state

One year to set up rules?

Get ready for control freak manipulations to kick in.

 

Still wondering how high tax penalties will end the black market:

Study: Nearly 40 percent of cigs in Washington are contraband

 

An example to follow-

Local government wastes no time making a decision:

King Co. prosecutor dismissing all misdemeanor pot cases

 

 

Photo- Port Townsend scene

 

Insists on dividing people up into groups– then assigning a separate value to each group.

 

Cheers on military forces that are not in the habit of winning decades of undeclared wars in distant lands.

Credits The Troops with defending American rights and freedoms- as if the US Armed Forces function as some sort of giant civil rights organization.

 

Stopped supporting a draft a long time ago.

 

Spends money on gunboat escorts for ferries on Puget Sound while terrorists are free to put their boat on a trailer and drive it onto the ferry.

 

Spends months promoting the idea of buying stuff to celebrate Christmas.

 

Brags about freedom- then goes with a control freak approach on individual liberty.

 

Lies about the stories associated with federal holidays.

Celebrates independence from a powerful central government.

Tries to make people feel guilty for not properly observing some federal holidays.

 

Talks about legalizing marijuana while including restrictions that leave prohibition and the drug war in place for adults age 18-20, those who want to grow a plant at home, possess more than an ounce, or possess marijuana from non-state sanctioned outlets.

 

Talks about placing high taxes on legal marijuana.

Dealers, traffickers and cartels are good with this idea.

 

Supports a Homeland Security police state that can’t keep heroin and cocaine out of the US.

 

Tolerates reporters who do not ask questions.

 

Tolerates politicians who lie about clean energy.

 

Supports a Drug War that places us all at risk.

 

 

Photo- Port Hadlock Transit Center

 

 

US foreign policy goals and objectives are somehow linked to American rights and freedoms.

 

Your vote is critical in this key election year.

 

Safety concerns require that arrest statistics must be kept secret.

Aug 2010-

A US Border Patrol spokesperson tells the press:

“Border Patrol spokeswoman Jenny Burke said Monday that the agency will not release any information on the number of arrests made by agents who work out of the Port Angeles station, the names of those arrested, what they were arrested for and the disposition of their cases”

“The number of arrests for Port Angeles’ or any other station is “law enforcement-sensitive,” Burke said.”

“The names of those arrested and other facts about them are not available for release under the 1974 Privacy Act, she said.”

 

The Department of Homeland Security is in the business of keeping terrorists out of the US.

‘Uptick’ in heroin use seen on North Olympic Peninsula

 

Marijuana is more harmful than prohibition.

 

Gunboats are required to protect ferry boats on Puget Sound.

 

Your favorite politician has a plan to create jobs and clean energy.

 

Fusion centers can stop the sorts of violent crimes Americans have been familiar with for decades.

 

 

Photo- Lake Crescent, WA

 


Americans were never meant to agree on matters of a personal nature. This is why we have so many different churches here.

People have different ways of observing special days on the calendar.

 

Maybe some of the guys who never made it back would have enjoyed marking the occasion with BBQs, loud music and women in bikinis.

No government recommended protocols or guilt trips required. Isn’t this what freedom is all about?

 

Maybe some of the people who never came back would have wanted Americans to spend some time reaching for an honest understanding of US foreign policy, rather than repeating the phrase “Thanks for your service.”

Maybe they would wish to live in an honest society.

Maybe they would question individuals who claim that Americans wouldn’t have the freedom to post comments on newspaper websites if people had not given their lives in Iraq and Afghanistan to protect that freedom.

Hey school teachers– where did this idea come from? Were US troops sent to Vietnam so that Americans could be free to send letters to the editor?

Is there any case in which the US Armed Forces have been sent to distant lands on a mission to protect freedom of speech?

Is protecting freedom of speech even part of training scenarios?

 

If The Troops are fighting for your freedom to share ideas on the web, or to have a Barbeque- why would you be scolded for doing so?

 

Think for yourself.

Mark the occasion as you see fit.

USMC ’79-’99

 

More here:

A Land of Make Believe

End the Military-Civilian Divide?

 

Don’t miss our companion blog- found here: Old Man Blog

Find us on Twitter: https://twitter.com/yeomalt

 

 

 

 

 

Photo- Foggy morning at Port Townsend