Wednesday, June 28, 2006

House Progress

My exceptional wife Dori and her work crew, our daughter Michelle and Dori's friend Pat, spent the week ripping down wallpaper in all of the rooms and repainting the walls and ceilings before the crews arrived to lay the new hardwood fllors, carpet and linoleum. The before and after pictures really tell the tale, it is a night and day difference. The floor guys did manage to pizz me off before it was over, they did an excellent job of laying the wood, it's bueatiful and I do give them credit for the quality of their work, what gave me heartburn was the fact, they "forgot" to re-hang the french doors on the living room. So when I asked them to put them back, they would not open and close properly due to the difference in the height of the old carpet and new wood floor, he looks at me and says you need to get someone to shave the doors. Then they wanted me to give them a check for their work I told them I paid the floor center and they would get paid by them. Then they attempted to take the 4 left over boxes of flooring, I asked them what they were doing, and I was told that was "extra" and they were taking it back to the store. No, you are leaving it right there in the garage, I know that they brought 10% extra wood as it was required and I had to pay for it before they even left the showroom with it, so it was mine. The older guy told the middle aged guy to put it back which made him mad, but I will be damned if I am paying for Julio to re-sell my flooring and make another 5-800 dollars off of me. 4153 dollars for 2 days work, and I want President Bush to tell me again how the immigrant workers are only taking jobs most Americans won't do, I don't know many Americans that make 2075 dollars a day. Even divided by the 3 men it averages almost 700 a day each, although I seriously doubt they were paying the "gofer" that much. Any way the carpet guys are next lol, I wonder what games they will try and play? Cynical bastard ain't I?

Saturday, June 17, 2006

I will be AWOL for a few weeks

We are closing on the new home on Monday the 19th at 3pm, and I have the C&P exam for my heart on the 19th also at 0800 hours so Monday is a big day for me. My regular readers know how much I enjoy C&P exams, just as much as a trip to the proctocoligist. But by 4 pm we will have our retirement home in our possession and will be busy getting moved in, since you all know Dori, won't let me do anything, my job will be to sit in the hot tub and stay the hell out of the way. But until they get the new carpets in I won't have internet to update anything so it could be a few days and it might be a few weeks. We have a lot of stuff to do, new hardwood floors in the bedrooms, living room and dining room, new linoelium in the kitchen and laundry room. I will wait patiently (yea right) I have the patience of an elelphant wanting dinner now. lol

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Sacrifice by Lt Col, Fred Seamon (ret)

SacrificeMay 28th, 2006 -- Lt. Col. Fred Seamon (ret.)
I have an established Memorial Day ritual that I have followed since moving to the California Coast more than a decade ago. Each Memorial Day I slip away from family and friends for about an hour and head to the beach. There I find a quiet spot where I recall comrades who were killed in action in Vietnam while we were serving there in 1967-68.
This year I will continue my ritual, but I will also include in my thoughts our young men and women who have been wounded in Iraq. I have been preoccupied with them since last week when I was an organizer and participant in a local Armed Forces Day parade. This year we had special guests, seriously wounded young men and women undergoing rehabilitation at a nearby VA hospital.
After the parade, as I reflected on the time I spent with these typical young American servicemen and women and saw what they are going through, I became quite angry. One word, sacrifice, kept popping up in my mind. It seems to me that our military, including regulars, reservists and members of the National Guard, are the only Americans who have been called on to make sacrifices in what the Bush Administration calls the Global War on Terrorism (GWOT). And they are suffered inordinately because of the grossly incompetent manner in which the war has been conducted by civilian Bush appointees, who not only lack military experience, but avoided service during Vietnam, and have disdained the advice of our uniformed military leaders.
Since George W. Bush declared “Mission Accomplished” on May 1, 2003, we have suffered 2,323 killed (prior to that time only 137 were killed in action) and about 17,650 wounded. Would we have suffered these casualties had the Bush Administration taken the advice of our military leaders and attacked Iraq with sufficient troops to secure the peace according to plans drawn up by Central Command and the State Department, which it disdained?
Who else, aside from our men and women in uniform, has been called on to make wartime sacrifices? I can’t think of anyone. Our taxes haven’t been raised to pay for the war. Unlike World War II, there is no rationing. A draft has not been reinstituted to provide fresh manpower to the military.
Only our volunteer military forces that face frequent deployments to Iraq have been called on to make sacrifices. It is not uncommon to find soldiers returning for their third tour in Iraq in only the fourth year of the war. These deployments wreak havoc on military family life. The heavy demands of sustained ground combat are also depleting military manpower and equipment faster than they can be fully replenished and leave the military unprepared for either natural disasters or deployment elsewhere.
I am especially angered by Bush’s claims that he supports the troops. He initially failed to support them by sending them undermanned and ill-equipped to win the peace in Iraq. Now, in the name of deficit reduction, he is failing our wounded and veterans by asking them to make sacrifices for our country and then reneging on a commitment to provide them with lifelong healthcare.
In a war that the Congressional Budget Office projects to cost $691 billion ($811 billion including Afghanistan), the Bush Administration can’t seem to find the relatively small amount of money needed to support our disabled and aging veterans. It has consistently underfunded the VA healthcare system so that long-term care services have been cut back and the waiting time for care has become excessive for many veterans. It has recommended closing local clinics, introducing enrollment fees and co-payments, which particularly impact older, poorer vets, and will probably force many of them to drop out of the system. It attempted to redefine the American Psychological Association definition of PTSD and restructure veterans’ compensation to reduce growing healthcare costs. Only the strong opposition of veterans’ organizations and Democrats has prevented the Bush Administration from gutting the VA healthcare system
I could go on, but I think from the above that it is abundantly clear that our men and women in uniform and their families who are being asked to make exceptional sacrifices are not being supported by the Bush Administration.
So this Memorial Day, I ask you to remember the fallen and thank our men and women in uniform for their service by opposing the Bush Administration’s attempts to limit VA healthcare.

VA Data loss includes all active duty troops as todays WAPO shows that the nations active duty military personnel's names and SSAN's were also in the database that has been stolen, why did that take another week to be announced? Why enter their names and numbers into the database at the time they enlist, they may get bad discharge papers and then they would not be eligible for veterans benefits, like I have said before there is more to this than what we the people are being told by this admninistration.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Nazi's still amongst us

Appeals Court Revokes Ex-Nazi's U.S. CitzenshipMay 23, 2006 12:00 a.m. EST
Yvonne Lee - All Headline News Staff Reporter
Lansing, MI (AHN) - An ex-Nazi is denied U.S. citizenship after a federal appeals court decides there is enough evidence to prove he hid his past.
The Associated Press reports the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled against Iwan Mandycz's efforts to retain his citizenship.
U.S. District Judge Paul Gadola had ruled last year that the 86-year-old Polish native was not eligible to immigrate to the U.S. in 1949.
The Justice Department accuses Mandycz of lying about his Nazi past in applications for displaced person status and American citizenship. He became a U.S. citizen in 1955 and has lived in Ohio since then.
He now faces deportation. Three judges on the 6th Circuit Court found enough evidence that Mandycz was an armed guard in 1943 at Poniatowa, a labor camp in Poland.
Jews were used as slave laborers there and then killed.
The court says, "In the face of considerable evidence that Mandycz was Guard 3308 and in the absence of competing evidence that he was not, we credit the district court's amply supported finding that that is who he was."
Defense lawyers argue that Mandycz has dementia and was unable to assist in his defense. They also contend there isn't ample evidence to prove he was a Nazi guard.

D Day and my Dad

My step father Dale (No Middle Name NMN) Jennings and one of WW2's most famous days share it, it became Dale's birthday in 1908 when he was born in Missouri. I am sure he never imagined his birthday becoming such a day that would make him live to regret having to celebrate it.
Dale joined the Army Air Corps in 1942 like many other men of the time, their country needed them, Dale was a radio and telegrapher, he could send Morse code at a fast rate of speed. He found himself soon in England with a B-17 wing, they became famous because of the plane the Memphis Belle, but Dale remembered the other things that made them famous, the amount of bombers they lost over Germany during the bombing runs.

Dale would not talk about WW2 except on his birthday, normally Dale never touched alcohol before 3:00 PM as he called it "Tea Time" then he could put away scotch like Humphrey Bogart. June 6th was the exception, he started drinking as soon as he awoke, he hated June 6th, it would not let him forget, ever his bad memories of that War, and that says a lot, Dale served in Korea during the Korean War, he flew the Berlin Airlift, one of his greatest moments of pride, but June 6th just put him in a foul mood. He always took the day off from the Post Office where he worked as a clerk after retiring from the Air Force in 1963.
It was the only day of the year if you waited until about lunch time he would start answering questions about the war, I guess he had enough Scotch in him, he loved the Tuskeegee Airman, and that is saying a lot from a man born in 1908 Missouri, they begged for them to be the escorts planes for their bombing runs into Germany, why? They never lost a single plane to enemy fighters with the Tuskeegee Airmen providing cover. They each and everyone had Dale's highest regards.
Dale had a lot of friends thru out the Air Force, I learned how that network was used in February 1976, I was coming back from Korea on a mid tour leave of 30 days, I was hopping Air Force planes across the Pacific, it's free, just time consuming. I left South Korea and it was 10 below zero, I had my overcoat, long johns, etc., trying to keep warm, when we left Kadena AFB Japan, it was not much warmer, but when we landed at Clark AFB in Manila, PI, it was 70 degrees and humid at 3:00 am.
Most of us went into the air terminals bathroom and came out of the long johns and the overcoats were packed. When we were loaded back on the C-141 they had added some pallets in front of the seats, they were long aluminum boxes, there were two of them. A dependent went to set her purse on the top of them and the flight chief of the plane, loadmaster, the NCOIC, quickly grabbed it off of the box and handed it back to her and told her for the rest of the flight to not ever set anything back on top of the caskets again. My first experience with military caskets.
We arrived in Guam, and the free loaders like me that were flying Space A, which meant Available were told we were being bumped off the manifest for another flight crew going back to Norton AFB. I checked with American Airlines and they wanted 1200.00 dollars one way from Guam to LAX, I didn't have that kind of money. I called home, Mom told Dale what was going on and he said to call back in half an hour, he would put the Air Force Good old boys network to work.
When I called home, 30 minutes later Dale told me to go the the Base Escort Office which would be located in the air terminal. He gave me the Senior Sergeants name, but it slips me now, hey 32 years anyway guess what I got to sign for, remember those 2 caskets? Yup, I signed for them, they were priority so they left on a United Flight coming back from Thailand full of GI's and we went to Travis AFB, they were a rowdy group.
When we landed in Travis, a Colonel came on the plane and called out my name, they were expecting me, or let's say they were waiting for the caskets, I had never seen so many Generals in my life, Army, Air Force, Marine's Navy Admirals, it looked like a meeting of the Pentagon group on the West Coast. I had been traveling for 4 days in my Class A's and they were a mess, I had shaved on the plane, but I was a disagrace to the uniform. The Colonel quickly took the paperwork and signed for it, gave me a copy of the receipt, so I could prove I signed them over. He then had some Air Force people escort me into the terminal before the Generals all saw me.
I was there about 4 hours when a C 141 came in, sure enough it was the same one I got thrown off in Guam, I got back on and they were wondering how I beat them to Travis AFB, by the time we landed at Norton the morning papers were out and we all learned the truth, those 2 caskets were bodies that had been returned from Vietnam after the embassay had fallen, the Swiss had arranged the return of the remains, which explained all the Generals at Travis.
Dale was a good step father, he could say more just by talking to you without ever raising his voice, he was that kind of man, he taught my brothers and I many fine values. He was a man who coped with his PTSD very well, he was like most of the "Greatest Generation" they sucked it up and went on with life, they never talked about the war, unless you caught them at a weak moment, Dale tried to watch the movie "Memphis Belle" because he knew the crew in England he ripped the arms off his easy chair, during the first scene of flak during a bombing run over Germany, he was white as a sheet, he dropped the arms on the floor, stood up and walked out of the room, and it was never mentioned again. Tell me he did not have PTSD.
I felt sorry for him, that his birthday was one of the greatest days of death of WW2, and the memories it brought back to him, a day to celebrate became a day to mourn for him, and he truly was a great man, and all I can say is I wish more men had been like my step father who earned the name DAD, and if he had lived would be 98 today he died in 2000 at 92. With him a lot of history died.
After his death we cleaned out the desk, he had been awarded his Distinguished Flying Cross by Eisenhower in 1944 for landing a plane after the pilot and co-piloit had been killed, Dale was a radio operator, the plane it was said on the citation had 175 holes in it, he was credited with saving the life of the crew members. The only time I ever saw him cry was when we buried my mother and he learned at Riverside National Cemetary that they would inscribe all his medals above the Bronze stars for Valor into the headstone, his is quite full, his drawer was full of citations from WW2 and Korean War. I hope you and Mom are together in a better place and your eyesight came back. Dale I love you and Happy Birthday.

Monday, June 05, 2006

Say No Democrats or the Waste of Time Republicans

They are leaving the average American voter with a bad taste in their mouths, long beofre the November 2006 mid-term elections. The Democrats do not feel compelled to produce a platform, their idea of a platform is watching the Republicans implode, from Jack Abramoff, Duke Cunningham, the extreme waste of time this week on a "anti-gay marriage bill" that has already been announced dead on arrival, so why do it? They are pandering to the extreme right who Dr Frist will need in 2008 in his quest for the Presidency, however even the conservatives know this is a waste of time and it is nothing but a desperate attempt to pander to them and it just disgusts them. The Congress has dug them a hole that not even a Ronald Reagan style Mea Culpa can save the Republican Party, their will be no falling of the "Berlin Wall" to save the Bush Presidency, he will rival the likes of Nixon, Grant, Coolidge and Hoover for the worst President ever.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

VA Colonel lies to Congress

Veteran Affairs Colonel Lied to the Senateby testvetSun Jun 04, 2006 at 01:51:41 PM EST
On May 28th 2006 Secretary Nicholson told the Senate Committee that the veterans data that was lost only was from veterans discharged after 1975 and veterans getting VA compensation.
He lied and here is the case to show it:
it is also posted on KOS and my website outsidethebeltway
Commentary :: ::
From this article we learn that on May 3rd 2006 the VA lost the data on 26.5 million veterans,
The VA declared it was the data on veterans who were discharged after 1975. Were they telling the truth?
"The data was stolen on May 3 and included names, Social Security numbers, date of birth and numerical disability ratings. No medical records or financial information had been compromised, Veterans Affairs Secretary Jim Nicholson said.
At a press conference, neither Nicholson nor Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez would provide additional details about the theft. "We are working hard with local authorities and with the investigator general of the Veterans Administration to try to find out what has happened here," Gonzalez said. "For law enforcement purposes, it would be helpful not to get into specifics about what happened."
Under intense bipartisan fire from Capitol Hill, Veterans Affairs Secretary Jim Nicholson said Wednesday he was outraged by his agency's decision to keep the theft of veterans' personal data quiet for two weeks."
The problem with this testimony to Congress on Wednesday May 28th Secretary Nicholson stated that the information was on veterans discharged after 1975. as shown in this quote from this article: "The 26.7 million veterans whose financial security may be compromised served in the armed forces from the mid-1970s and forward, Nicholson said.
In response to the data theft, which Crowley thinks may be the largest data theft affecting the federal government in history, he is a co-sponsor of a bill that would authorize the federal government to take a series of actions to protect the 26.7 million veterans."
However, this data from the 2000 U.S. Census shows that in 2000 that out of the 208.1 million Americans 18 or older, there was 26.4 million veterans, this is all veterans WW1, WW2, Korea, Vietnam and all veterans discharged since 1975.
This does not begin to be the testimony that the VA Colonel gave on May 28th 2006. I thought is was a crime to lie to Congress, what about lying to the American public? If he can't be trusted to tell us the truth about whose data was lost, why should we believe anything else he states?
Now we are hearing that 50,000 active duty Navy and Guard members data was also on the computer, why was active duty information on a VA database?
This also makes us question, exactly what project was this man working on that he felt the need to work on it at home, off the clock? At the Postal Service it was against the rules to work off the clock and you could be suspended, why would this government agency encourage it? Who was this man's boss and what was his function?
The White House 2005 Conference on Aging gave Mr. McLendon a special place on the President's web sites. The description below would indicate that Mr. McLendon is an "insider" neoconservative Republican who has climbed from agency to agency without any real expertise or accomplishment. He appears to be another "heckava job, Brownie" crony who was intimately involved in ways to "trim" rightful veterans' benefits.
Mr. McLendon is the founder of McLendon & Associates, a management consulting and public policy firm that provides a range of services to a diverse portfolio of state and local government, Federal agency, and private sector clients engaged in the health services, long term care, disability, aging and social service delivery, and information technology arenas. Mr. McLendon has also worked extensively in the international environment for the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, U.S. Agency for International Development, and the Department of Defense on a number of social service, pension and unemployment, resource and financial management, and strategic planning reform projects. Mr. McLendon has also served as a consultant and advisor for the National Academy of Public Administration, Carl Vinson Institute of Government at the University of Georgia, the Institute for Defense Analyses, and other organizations.
In December 2003, Mr. McLendon was appointed as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy in the Department of Veterans Affairs. In this position, Mr. McLendon exercises broad responsibilities including policy analysis of disability, long term care, the aging veteran population, and service delivery strategies.
Mr. McLendon was to be the featured VA speaker for Memorial Day in Wisconsin as announced on May 2, 2006. See:
A press release from Rep Steve Buyer (R-IN) gives even more insight into Mr. McLendon's VA concerns. See: where the testimony was about "ways to achieve closer integration between the Department's VR&E program and the Department of Labor's Veterans Employment and Training Service". That translates into "vets get make-work jobs, not benefits."
Mr. McLendon's position in the VA "organization is found at and at
A 2004 VA study in which Mr. McLendon was involved as a task force member was entitled "VA Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Task Force". Page 170 (numbered page 162) says it all: "Twenty-first Century views of disabilities have shifted from the negative aspects of disabilities to a focus on the abilities of persons with disabilities with a rapid return-to-work strategy" or more accurately "vets get make-work jobs, not benefits." See
A Google search of "Michael H. McLendon" shows that he is a charter sponsor of the Air Force Memorial Foundation with a rank of Lieuntenant Colonel. See: . Members of his family may also be listed as sponsors.
Thanks to the Washington Post, (see: ) we know the individual who had the hard drive stolen from his home with data about approximately 19 to 26 million veterans was a 60 year old GS-14 working as an IT specialist at VA. It is quite odd that McLendon was forced to resign before the IT specialist who had illegal possession of the data outside of the VA. Whoever heard of a 60 year old, GS-14 IT specialist? This GS-14 is probably playing some powerful cards on some powerful VA personalities.
my thank to Hugh Cox a veterans attorney and advocate who contributed this to the VA
So we had another political appointee at the VA, whose specialty it is to reduce costs, in otherwords find a way to reduce disabled veterans compensation payments, by creating them positions somewhere to make them employable, and with no guarantee the job would pay the equivalent of the VA compensation they would be losing by becoming employable under the proposed revamping. Nothing good comes out of sneaky stuff like this and the IOM PTSD review, and the Veterans Disability Reveiw Commission, all I see is a picture of the Republican agenda to reduce disabled veterans benefits, this during a time when they have us in a war of their making and choice. Tax cute for the ultra rich and compensation cuts for disabled veterans, Mr President your priorities are all wrong sir, and I hope the new Democratic Congress in 2007 stops all these fine plans you have crafting right now, you and your brain need to go back where you came from and take all of Turdblossoms friends with you.
PS Don't let the door hit you in the ass on the way out. Take the VA Colonel with you, he has no honor left like the rest of you, somehow when you get inside the Beltway, you lose all common sense._______