G7 Comparison

Every so often you run across something that is refreshingly blunt. Mark Steyn has a post up that is one of those. It is a refreshing comparison of the United States relative position within the G7 group. It does some interesting compares of relative happiness within the group of nations, and postulates on why there is a difference.

Europeans did “vote for their own best interests” — i.e., cradle-to-grave welfare, 35 hour work-weeks, six weeks of paid vacation, etc — and as a result they now face a perfect storm of unsustainable entitlements, economic stagnation, and declining human capital that’s left them so demographically beholden to unassimilable levels of immigration that they’re being remorselessly Islamized with every passing day.

More importantly, it is one of those articles that allows for some clear comparisons of the possible results of the US government changing to emulate the governments and societies of other G7 nations. It is a very clearly opinionated post and in some respects is humorous given the extreme positions.

Give it a read, have a chuckle, and then think about it.

I especially liked the quote from Keith Reade. While it is an extreme position, this is not an unusual European view of the US.

Earth Day…

… is also Lenin’s Birthday.

Hmm…interesting coincidence or something else?

Lenin’s political philosophy knew nothing of morality, he once said that, “There are no morals in politics; there is only expedience. A scoundrel may be of use to us just because he is a scoundrel.” Some environmentalists take this to heart as well, placing metal spikes in trees so that when these trees get to lumber mills the spike will ruin the saws and have in some cases injured or even killed mill workers.

You decide.

Media Reporting

An interesting little piece over here on what many people are finally beginning to realize. Checkout the video while you are there.

Prince Harry – Returning to Britian

This news hit the blog wire Thursday, and really pisses me off.

Here we have someone of obvious notoriety that is very quietly making a difference.  He is out there carrying on a tradition of service, on the “tip of the spear”.  The folks in the UK MOD put together a nice deal with the British press essentially saying, Yes Harry is out there doing the things that young Lieutenants are supposed to do.  You can have all the details but, please do not release them until he returns.  This is for his safety as well as the troops with him.  He should not be publicized as a high profile target… etc. 

The a US report goes and blows the deal.  Man, I support freedom of speech but come on folks let’s use some common sense.  You blow operational security for a scoop?  And then to top it off, now that the lid is off the British press has a great deal of more depth and details than you because they have been working the story for months.  Talk about a lose-lose proposition.  Two words for reporters and bloggers alike — “RESPONSIBLE REPORTING”.  Not something that we have seen a lot of over the past 40 years.

Details on the story can be found….. here …. hereherehere … and a whole bunch of other places too.

The Greatest Generation Part I

A lot has been written about the veterans of WWII.  The values that they have, and display.  Their actions during the war, and after.  The impact that they have had not on the shaping of the United States, and really the world of the 20th and 21rst Centuries.  Of my family only my uncle was of the right age to serve during WWII, and that was late in the conflict.  So that brings me to, what about all of those that had to find an indirect way to contribute?  What were they able to do to assist?

Well over at Cmdr. Salamander, the amphibious one has a nice essay on Mickey Rooney.

While I think that we all recognize that Hollywood had a very different approach to issues of the time, I certainly never realized that Mickey Rooney, was a Bronze Star winner.

In today’s world, I think we see two primary camps going at it.  The most vocal of the camps seems to be those opposed to direct governmental / military action.  This same group, and I am over generalizing, is the one that will stage boisterous, chaotic, “made for tv” events with extreme actions to garner attention to their cause.  Often times, individuals in these groups will either take every opportunity to make their points known or they will actually violate the laws of this country through vandalism or destruction of property.  Recent examples include the activity in Berkeley and Olympia.

The second camp seems to be much more in tune with the mentality and values that were prevalent in WWII.  These are the actors, and entertainers that very quietly make their way into Iraq, Afghanistan, etc. and provide the troops with much needed distractions.  They do so with little or no fanfare.  They do so repeatedly.  They make the trips with humility, and I hope with pride.  To complement the “entertainers” is the grassroots groups that toils away daily, very quietly, and with much humility.  These are the people that are out there building the care packages, putting together the letter writing campaigns, etc.  These are groups that can be very high profile when necessary but, are generally very humble and go about their business without a lot of fanfare.  Groups like Soldiers Angels, Gathering of Eagles, The Patriot Guard Riders, etc.

So, you might be asking yourself “Where is he going with all this”?  I am not sure yet so there are no profound conclusions to be illuminated here.  I think I am going to dive into some research and see if I cannot begin pulling a short series together that may offer some supporting evidence to reach some conclusions etc.  The one thing that I will offer at this stage is that during and prior to WWII, there was certainly a portion of society that was very vocal about US isolationism and even those that believed that Nazi Germany was good for the world and the way of the future.  But, what sticks in my mind (through the history books) is the total focus of the country and the world on the war effort, and people finding every possible way to contribute in some way.  Today, not so much.  Why is that?

Oblivious Cartoon

Go here to see the accompanying explanation for the cartoon.

FISA Expiration

Food for Thought

Over at Flopping Aces, Scott has an interesting post up.  It seems to me that I have seen something similar before.  In any case, it should help to put current events in perspective.  Go read the words, and then allow yourself to have an emotional reaction to them.  Then finally consider what it means to agree and believe in the intial premise.

We Americans (at least most of us) believe that God gives all human beings certain inalienable rights, that everyone is created equal, and that among these rights are the right to live, to live in a government that derides its power from the consent of the people, and the right to pursue our own happiness. These rights do not just belong to people who are lucky enough to have been born to legal citizens of the U.S. living between two great oceans, S of Canada, and N of Mexico. They are rights that belong to all human beings.