All sorts of heroes and villains roaming around the news wires these days… here’s my slant on some of ’em…
1) Chris Kyle was a United States Navy SEAL proclaimed to be the most lethal sniper in U.S. military history, with 160 confirmed kills out of 255 probable kills. Kyle served four tours of duty in Iraq and was awarded several commendations for acts of heroism and meritorious service while in combat. He allegedly became known as “Legend” among the soldiers that he was tasked to protect.
Kyle was honorably discharged in 2009 and wrote a bestselling autobiography, American Sniper, which was published in January 2012. Clint Eastwood has made a film about Kyle based upon his autobiography… it is playing in movie theaters now. It’s also called American Sniper.
I have not seen American Sniper, and, I’m not sure I will go see it before it comes out on DVD. From the sound bites I have heard in commercials, it just sounds a tad over melodramatic for my tastes and not really worth the $15 to $30 I would pay to take myself and a date to go see it.
However before I be getting to some stuff about this movie and some back and forth talk revolving around it… this is what I am hearing in reviews…
• It doesn’t comment on the Iraq war pro or con but those feelings, pro and con, are portrayed in the movie by some of the actors’ portrayals.
• It is a war movie but it’s not just a move about war that is just for guys alone… it’s for all types of folks… it has a perfect blend of war scenes, humor, and romance.
• And, in the end, when the credits roll, the one question you might ask is if the director made an anti-war movie or a pro-war movie.
Now, it seems Michael Moore, the documentary filmmaker, tweeted over the weekend that snipers are cowards, and in his tweet he told about an uncle who was killed by a sniper in World War II. He says he was told snipers were cowards. He also said, allegedly, that he was told that a man who fights in war should do it perosn to person… face to face. Thats what real men in war do.
Well… needless to say, after that tweet, the shit did hit the fan and tweeters were a twittering all over the place… as well as various words on the topic emanating from other media sources both news and social forums.
Even Sara… as in Palin… got involved… when she said on Facebook: “Hollywood leftists: While caressing shiny plastic trophies you exchange among one another while spitting on the graves of freedom fighters who allow you to do what you do, just realize the rest of America knows you’re not fit to shine Chris Kyle’s combat boots.”
Arizona Congressman Paul Gosar (R) also took to Facebook as he posted a sharp retort to Moore when he posted this: “Let me introduce myself. My name is Sean Johnson. I currently work for Congressman Paul Gosar as his Wounded Warrior Military and Veteran Liaison. I am a Marine and a veteran of the war in Afghanistan. I am medically retired due to injuries I sustained during my service in Afghanistan.
I personally know what our snipers do. I have worked with these guys. Calling them cowards wouldn’t faze them one bit but it would amuse them, coming from a soft, Hollywood leftist like Michael Moore. If anyone knows cowards it might be him.”
Johnson goes on to say what he sees the role of a sniper as being during combat… war… it’s an interesting enough perspective. Go to Gosar’s Facebook page or Google “Gosar reply to Moore on Facebook” and it will pop up.
I am not going to go into other opinions from either side of the controversy… its not worth the time and effort because a lot of it is various parts of silly, racist and ignorant…
I will say this… I personally knew a sniper… he was in Vietnam. He rarely spoke about what he did but on one occasion he and I were walking down to a Jazz show out in Saratoga and for some reason he opened up to me… this is all I will relate about that time…
He just said it was something that he never took very lightly and somehow always felt conflicted each time he pulled the trigger, but, that he did it because that was what he was supposed to do. It wasn’t fun nor was it a big sense of accomplishment.
Outside of that one time it was not something he and I ever talked about again.
I will say this about my friend… never, at no time have I ever though him to be a coward… T was a guy who had your back no matter what… no matter where… because he was your friend… T took no shit that I was ever aware and he gave none to nobody that I was ever aware.
I, as most of you readers may know, am not a pro-war advocate. I understand sometimes shit happens and we get mired down in the shit and need to take some action. Wanna for instance?
When some terrorists steal two damn jets and ram them into two buildings in NYC and kill innocent folks we need to go send a message that that shit will not ever be tolerated and we will do whatever is necessary to take you out if you murder our people… end of story. Of course, we didn’t just go do that and somehow we went and got mired down doing other stuff… but… that’s another story for another time.
So… I do understand that sometimes we gotta do some stuff that is not exactly according to my strict desires conscience wise…
Now… there is one thing I am gonna talk about and it’s this… It’s about what Moore said… the part where he allegedly said someone told him that real soldiers in war go face to face…
Really? All the time? That is what goes down between real men, eh? Non-cowards anyway, eh?
All those times I heard about where some soldiers or insurgents… say like the French resistance in WWII… go up and grab someone from behind and slice their throats when they sneaking up to blow up some ammo dump or bridge or whatever.. or… maybe ambsuh and kill some of the enemy from behind some sort of cover… those were cowards or heroes? I was really hearing about cowards and not brave patriots?
All those jet jockeys dropping bombs on various locations in war zones… cowards or heroes?
What about those soldiers who fire off rockets at targets miles and miles away… sight unseen peeps get killed, totally obliterated… cowards or heroes?
See… things aren’t always what they seem when you go around issuing blanket statements. And, maybe ex-soldier Johnson has a point about what snipers do and maybe he doesn’t (you didn’t Google it yet? … damn) but the thing is this… war is not nice and there are no rules when it comes to fighting wars.
Ok… there are those Geneva rules but outside of that… not really. Except that you kill the enemy before he… or she… kills you. War has one big rule… at the end of the day you snuggle down in your hole and wake up to see the next sun rise until you can get your ass home… hopefully in one piece.
War sucks and nobody should ever have to be in one, but, if, you are, then, you will do whatever is necessary to make it out alive which means taking out that other person who wants to take you out by whatever means necessary.
That being said… War is not healthy for children and other living things.
2) Saw this the other day… A former Louisville Metro Police detective who was allegedly drunk and off duty when he shot an unarmed man was cleared of the most serious charge against him… he was found guilty of driving under the influence by a jury, but, avoided jail time when he was acquitted of wanton endangerment.
According to The Louisville Courier-Journal the dude was in an unmarked police car when he stopped a someone he said was speeding back in 2012. Long story short… stuff happened and the guy who got stopped supposedly lunged at the ex-cop who then shot the guy doing the lunging.
Now…the ex-cop admitted, when he was questioned by investigators, that he was at a friend’s house drinking brandy before the run-in where the alleged speeder was shot.
The ex-cop became an ex-cop when he submitted his resignation after a 2013 internal police investigation found he that he had violated departmental policy. Shooting people while drunk sounds pretty un-departmental to me…
The prosecutor of the case said “He doesn’t get to hide behind the fact he’s a cop. When you got in the car and you were drunk, you stepped outside of that role.”
After the jury’s verdict was rendered, the presiding judge ordered a fine be assessed of $500 and that the ex-cop attend an alcohol intoxication class.
One problem by me… see if you grok this along with me… guy gets drunk; gets into car; stops another guy for allegedly speeding… oh, yeah, did I forget to mention that the alleged speeder’s charges were dropped?… anyways… a tussle develops and the ex-cop pulls out his weapon and shoots the alleged speeder… who had his charges dropped…
Now… how in the hell is that not depraved endangerment of a civilian? Huh?
3) About a week or so back snowstorms pounded the upland areas of Tabuk province near Saudi Arabia’s northern border with Jordan. Now… just to be clear…snowfall of any magnitude in that area is not an everyday occurrence. So when it happen the folks kinda wanna have some fun and do something like maybe make some snowmen.
Not so fast there my fine Muslim friends… that’s what Saudi Sheikh Mohammed Saleh al-Munajjid effectively declared when he wrote in an Islamic chatroom, “It is not permitted to make a statue out of snow, even by way of play and fun. God has given people space to make whatever they want which does not have a soul, including trees, ships, fruits, buildings and so on.”
In plain words… according to Mr. Sheik his booty… frolicking in the snow and building snowmen is not being a good Muslim.
Now I don’t wanna start anything here but now snowmen are evil??? Really and honest to Mohammed for real?
4) How come? Back then it was…
But now that it’s…
ya don’t hear anything about this guy?
Could it be because…
5) Alex Rodriguez just off from a one year suspension related to drug/steroid use… he admitted to DEA agents last year that he had paid Bosch $12,000 a month for steroid cream, edible testosterone “gummies,” and human growth hormone injections. You would think he would be doing anything he could to stay as squeaky clean as possible and not be doing anything that could even come close to hinting about any improprieties of any sort or any connections to drugs/steroids in any way, shape or form. Right? I mean I would if I were in his shoes.
So who is he rumored to be getting some help from regarding his hitting as he attempts to return to the game from almost a two year layoff due to injuries and that suspension? Donnie Mattingly? Cal Ripken Jr.? Ya know somebody who knows something about hitting, and, more or less, had a damn near as squeaky clean rep as could be had… makes sense… right? You’d think that, in my opinion.
Nawwww… not ARod…
According to the San Francisco Chronicle Rodriguez has been at a California baseball training being mentored by no less than Mr. Barry Bonds. Now understand Bonds was never suspended for any drug us of any kind, and, the only charge the government ever got him on was one felony count of obstruction of justice for giving an incomplete answer to a question by a grand jury (which is still under appeal, btw), Bonds own battles against charges that he used PEDs are themselves historic and maybe surpasses anyone’s in the game and maybe only pale when compared to what Rodríguez has put himself through.
There is nothing that says ARod can’t train with Bonds… he does tutor some of the younger San Francisco Giants hitters… he does have knowledge of the game and how to play the game after all… it’s just that mention steroids to most folks and the one name that will invariably pop up in the conversation will be Bonds.
So… just maybe, ya think, that maybe, that’s the one name someone like ARod just might wanna stay away from as he tries to put the pieces back together from his own personal steroid hell? Just maybe?
6) Freshman Iowa Senator Joni Ernst gave the elephant’s rebuttal to Obama’s State of the Union address and as such it was more or less the expected this and that… ho hum… run of the mill type of stuff and not very controversial.
But, this morning as I read about the Bammer’s speech and the elephants retort I found out something about the elephant spokesperson I never knew…
Now… in my feeble defense… she ran in Iowa and I’m on the east coast and as much as I read the papers and I’m online… sometimes I just sorta gloss over some stuff… Horrors, I know… ya’ll should know all that in the interest in full disclosure here… Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maximum culpa… Okay sack cloth and ashes back in the closet…
But… did you know that before she spoke last night the most single notable thing she was noted for was probably some crazy and wild advertisements she ran last year during her Senate campaign. Ads in which she proudly discussed her experience with hogs… aka pigs… “I grew up castrating hogs on an Iowa farm, so when I get to Washington, I’ll know how to cut pork. Washington’s full of big spenders. Let’s make them squeal.”
Dammmnnnnn… and… as a man… that image just makes me oink, “ouch!”
6) Roaming around the internet I found this little tidbit… Seattle Seahawk QB Russell Wilson was asked about the four interceptions he threw in the NFC championship game before throwing the winning TD pass in OT…and he said… “That’s God setting it up, to make it so dramatic, so rewarding, so special. I’ve been through a lot in life, and had some ups and downs. It’s what’s led me to this day.”
Before I say anything, here are some comments about his comment:
Chicago Sun Times: “Russell Wilson’s crying isn’t quite as endearing when he is pinning the blame of his failures on God.”
The website Deadspin: “Russell Wilson’s just out here throwing God under the bus! If God was actually one of Russell Wilson’s teammates, he’d be publicly demanding a trade right now.”
NESN… aka New England Sports Network: “This might seem outlandish, but there must have been something going on to cause those four interceptions, which were more than half of Wilson’s regular-season total of seven. And the Seahawks, who haven’t lost since November 16, have occasionally seemed to have some help from upstairs.”
God don’t root for one person… or team… to do good while the other one fails. You win or fail… you succeed or don’t succeed… all on your own. Believe what you what the hell you want but God don’t give damn about no football games, no TDs, no interceptions… not one dratted play good or bad in any games what so ever. Not in any sport… baseball, soccer, basketball… not even in any reindeer games.
God does not give a damn about the games we play. Simply, put, we do it all on our own.
God does not like one person better than the other and could care less if someone scores the winning touchdown or not.
Why in the hell would He… or She?
Now… have I been clear enough on this?
7) The richest 80 peeps on Earth are now as wealthy as the world’s 3.5 billion poorest. In other words, 80 peeps control as much wealth as half the population that presently lives on the third rock from the sun.
In 2010, it took a slightly greater number of rich peeps… 388 peeps of them… to equal the collective wealth of the world’s poorest 50%.
Now grok this… by next year, the richest 1 percent of earners will control more than half of the world’s total wealth.
Still think that it’s okay if the extremely rich don’t get taxed more than us lower economic class types?
8) “Growing Pains” TV dad, Alan Thicke is speaking out about fellow TV dad Bill Cosby, admitting that he believes he might be guilty. In a recent interview Thicke said he kinda felt like where there is smoke… multiple allegations of sexual assault lodged against the Cos… there is probably fire… guilt on Cos’ part.
Thicke said among other comments, “There is no doubt in my mind Bill Cosby was a bad boy,” he said.
Now, maybe I’m wrong, and, I’m reading too much into this… but… “bad boy”???!!!
On one level the racial connotations are just really sad. Sorry, I know I’ve gotten up on the soap box about using certain words and making too much about the words, but, sometimes certain words do carry certain meanings and “boy” considering the context that Thicke is saying it just makes me think me think about a very sad racial sterotype.
Then his choice of his words… when I sit back and think “Am I over reacting?” … they just make me think that Thicke is really just making this sound like what Cosby did was some silly little dalliance that “us boys do” when we are young. Like, “Oh, well, he doped up some chick and boffed her one… he’ll grow out of it.”
Sorry, but, that’s just what I am hearing here.
Look, I have no idea if Cosby is a serial rapist or not, but, it don’t look real good for him right now. But, I do know that if he did do what he is accused then it is no boyish prank and that there should be no diminutive references regarding his person… racially or otherwise.
Just how I felt when I read what Thicke said…
Instead, the airlines will use their windfall to pay down debt and reward shareholders.
Fuel is the biggest single expense at most airlines, and spot prices for jet fuel have tumbled by half since mid-September. If prices stay around these levels, U.S. airlines could save $20 billion this year by some estimates.
So, why can’t we all get some cheaper prices on them seats, again? Just asking…
10) Just another of them images I found while I was scurrying around the internet that made me smile…
And before I leave… you thought I would forget that Monday was MLK Jr. day? One of my heroes? nawwww….
“One who breaks an unjust law that conscience tells him is unjust, and who willingly accepts the penalty of imprisonment in order to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the highest respect for law.” — Martin Luther King
“The limitation of riots, moral questions aside, is that they cannot win and their participants know it. Hence, rioting is not revolutionary but reactionary because it invites defeat. It involves an emotional catharsis, but it must be followed by a sense of futility.” — Martin Luther King
This week’s gratuitous pictures… Don’t know if ya’ll know it or not but Real Madrid standout Cristiano Ronaldo and his supermodel girlfriend Irina Shayk split up after five years together. So, that means she could be out and about dating again… not that any of us got a snowball’s chance in Saudi Arabia of hooking up with her… but… I don’t think I have ever spotlighted her in the gratuitous pics, so, without further adieu…
Another thousand words….
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