Friday, September 30, 2011

Officer Dan Starr is Retiring from HPD

An old friend of mine, Dan Starr, is retiring from the Houston Police Department next month and I was invited to the party; can’t go because of a schedule conflict and so I’ll do my best to recall a couple of events we went through when he was a probationary officer.

One time we’d arrested a real winner of a young woman.  She tried kicking out the windows of our patrol car; can’t remember if she succeeded off hand.  I think she did; but that’s not why I recall the incident.  Dan was standing off to the side while the young woman was being ugly and the next thing you know she’d spit all over him.  He looked at me as if I was supposed to give the nod to inflict serious bodily harm; but I explained to him the rule; not the one which prevents officers from knocking suspects silly; the other rule, don’t stand where you can get spit on so easily. 

The other incident was more memorable and involved the “Killer Dr. Pepper Machine”.  I’ve mentioned it in previous articles, mostly as a footnote without going into much detail.  There is even mention of the Killer Dr. Pepper machine in a novel I wrote, Pecaw’s Gift, chapter 34

 Originally there was a homicide investigation dispatched to another unit; if memory serves it was Officer Shaw and his partner.  I had probationary officer, Dan Starr with me and as part of his training he needed first hand experience working a homicide so I picked up the mike and volunteered our unit to be primary. 

Upon arrival, standard police talk, we observed one “suspect” trying to lift the huge refrigerated soda machine off of “suspect #2” who was bent into thirds and “appeared” to be DOA.  I don’t think there’s a delicate way of saying it, he was flat as a pancake and no way was he going to be listed as anything other than DOA.  The fire dept. emergency crew and another couple of HPD officers helped us pick the Dr. Pepper machine off the young man, all the while serious grown professionals were dropping one liners, “Be a Pepper”, “Maybe he wanted an Orange Crush” and other insensitive remarks. 

We had to take the “suspect/witness” down to Juvenile Division where he was to make his official statement; something along the lines, “We were just minding our business, walking down the sidewalk and this soda machine fell over on him”.  Never mind that our “suspect/witness” had been sitting on top of the Dr. Pepper machine rocking it back and forth trying to dislodge the money box inside while his partner in crime was bent down with his arm up inside the machine trying to get the money box loose as well.  That’s when the “law”, meaning the law of gravity, took hold of one of the suspects and pronounced him guilty on the spot.

While standing in the Juvenile Division, the young man put his arm to the square as he swore to the truthfulness of his written statement.  I grabbed Dan Starr by the arm and had him step back a few paces to avoid any lightning bolts that might come through the ceiling tiles striking the little liar dead. 

Officer Starr, here’s to a wonderful retirement and may you have the righteous desires of your heart.  I wish I could attend the informal gathering to honor your service; but, duty calls.

This article has been cross posted to The Moral Liberal, a publication whose banner reads, “Defending The Judeo-Christian Ethic, Limited Government, & The American Constitution”.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Jihad Deniers

The high priests who run the Church of Man Made Global Warming call anyone who doesn’t become disciples of the environmental whacko movement, “Deniers”; an attempt to discredit folks who don’t agree with a junk science whose main purpose has nothing to do with saving Mother Earth and everything to do with wealth redistribution.   Scientists who don’t sign on to this massive hoax are, after all, “denied” federal grant money or “denied” publication in professional circles; hence the term “deniers” seems quite appropriate. 

Speaking of deniers...
This past week we learned of an individual’s attempt to wage “Jihad” on American soil.  According to an article on Fox News a graduate student from Northeastern University took delivery of the items needed; but, as the authorities were quick to point out, “…the public was never in danger in a Massachusetts man’s alleged plot to blow up the Pentagon and the U.S. Capitol using remote-controlled airplanes filled with explosives.”

Clearly the suspect must have been a right wing extremist; probably a devout Christian who covertly meets regularly with fellow Tea Party conspirators. 

‘“They say the explosives delivered to Rezwan Ferdaus were always closely monitored.”

Knowing our government was closely monitoring these dangerous weapons certainly puts my mind at ease; better to hand a small cache of explosives and a couple of assault rifles over to a lunatic who wants to blow up half of Washington then truck loads of assault rifles over to a bunch of Mexican drug lords; that really would be irresponsible, perhaps even criminal. 

What kind of name is Rezwan Ferdau; sounds Irish, doesn’t it?  Maybe Ferdau is a deep cover Irish Republican Army member; what’s the term…Sleeper?   Jihad must be some kind of potato, maybe deep fried or something.  We all need to be on alert, put on our marching shoes and watch for crafty right wing terrorists among us, those who harbor deep resentment to the Changes being implemented by the current régime.

“In recorded conversations, Ferdaus said he planned to attack the Pentagon and U.S. Capitol using aircraft similar to “small drone airplanes” that were guided by GPS equipment, the affidavit said. The plan called for three remote-controlled aircraft to carry out the attacks, along with six other gunmen divided into two teams, with Ferdaus coordinating the operation.”

Now it makes sense; Rezwan Ferdau isn’t an Irish name.  As it turns out he’s of Middle Eastern heritage, maybe even Muslim; dare I say it, a Radical Islamic Terrorist?  I was expecting to hear Janet Napolitano, Secretary of Department of Homeland Security declare a victory in the War Against Terror; how silly of me; there is no war on terror.

‘“I want the public to understand that Mr. Ferdaus’ conduct, as alleged in the complaint, is not reflective of a particular culture, community or religion,” said Carmen Ortiz, U.S. Attorney for the District of Massachusetts. “In addition to protecting our citizens from the threats and violence alleged today, we also have an obligation to protect members of every community, race and religion against violence and other unlawful conduct.”

That Politically Correct assurance from Carmen Ortiz, U.S. Attorney for the District of Massachusetts may be more disconcerting than the fact that a Radical Islamic Terrorist obtained sufficient explosives to cause considerable loss of life and damage to property within the borders of our sovereign nation.  Here we have an official statement of denial; an intentional misdirection from the fact that Radical Islam has declared war on Americans and all that we stand for; in other words, Jihad Deniers.

This article has been cross posted to The Moral Liberal, a publication whose banner reads, “Defending The Judeo-Christian Ethic, Limited Government, & The American Constitution”.


Thursday, September 22, 2011

Progressives Hate the 1st Amendment

Tolerance is fine as long as your opinion happens to fall in line with the left; isn’t that what Political Correctness is all about?  This past week KPRC had one of its managers issue an op-ed piece railing against the use of the “Stars and Bars” on personalized Texas license plates.  In essence it was his opinion that such a display would only serve to agitate folks who only see it as a sign of racial prejudice and bigotry. 

When the world was young I was taught the Stars and Bars represented the Confederacy, a link to my ancestors and a proud “in your face” reminder that just because the South lost they couldn’t kill the spirit.  You’d never guess from such a statement my mother was born in New Orleans and kept her accent all these years, now would ya’? 

In the past several years something interesting occurred regarding the Stars and Bars.  On the one hand some rather heavy drinking Neanderthal red neck bigots chose to use that particular logo to emphasize their immaturity.  Then on the other side were the carpet baggin’ progressives who wanted to rub it in a little more that the South had been defeated; don’t show that damned flag or anything resembling it in public ever again. Did I mention my mother was a died in the wool Southerner?

In order to make sure the Stars and Bars was removed from public view it became part of the left’s politically correct black list; only folks who think Blacks should still be slaves would promote it and only folks who hate blacks would show it in public.  You have to be a racist hate monger to even consider the Stars and Bars as anything but pure hate speech.  That is what the current generation has been spoon fed so that is what they believe; pure hogwash!

Never mind history, never mind Confederate Heritage or the Sons of the Confederacy and how that symbol continues to link generations back a hundred and fifty years; no, political correctness has been applied and the Stars and Bars is hate speech.

The issue at hand is the 1st Amendment:

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

Similarly, it has become hate speech to voice an opinion which violates another of the left’s favorite topics, homosexuality.  I’m not talking about folks who go out of their way to insult some limp wrist panty waist who happens to sashay down the sidewalk in funny looking shoes; but if the shoe fits…; no, just your plain everyday conversation in which an opinion is expressed, something to the effect, “I think homosexuality is a sin”.  
Progressives have taken up the banner and so the use of the word homosexual, unless it is to compliment the Mayor of Houston, that kind of talk is now hate speech.  Hey, we are progressives and we get to determine what is tolerated and what is hate speech.

Take for example a Fox News story by Lari Barager out of Ft. Worth, Texas, Student Suspended for Saying Gay is Wrong

“Fourteen-year-old Dakota Ary spent most of the day Tuesday serving an in-school suspension. It was punishment for discussion in his German class at Fort Worth’s Western Hills High School.

“We were talking about religions in Germany. I said, ‘I’m a Christian. I think being a homosexual is wrong,’” he said. “It wasn’t directed to anyone except my friend who was sitting behind me. I guess [the teacher] heard me. He started yelling. He told me he was going to write me an infraction and send me to the office.”’

Ary is an honor student and probably has read and understands the Constitution.  Perhaps his German instructor should try reading it.  Come to think of it, the “assistant principal (who) called Ary’s mother at work to let her know he was in trouble” should read it as well.  Maybe the two of them could write on the black board, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

Like it or not progressives run our public schools, universities and fill many positions of power throughout government.  This is no accident as Cleon Skousen pointed out in his book, The Naked Communist.  Here are just a few of their goals in no particular order.

“Get control of the schools. Use them as transmission belts for socialism and current Communist propaganda. Soften the curriculum. Get control of teachers' associations. Put the party line in textbooks.

Eliminate all laws governing obscenity by calling them "censorship" and a violation of free speech and free press.

Break down cultural standards of morality by promoting pornography and obscenity in books, magazines, motion pictures, radio, and TV.

Present homosexuality, degeneracy and promiscuity as “normal, natural, healthy.”

Discredit the American Constitution by calling it inadequate, old-fashioned, out of step with modern needs, a hindrance to cooperation between nations on a worldwide basis.”

How are they doing so far?  Those who would destroy all that is good in America use the text of our Constitution; but only when it serves to advance their agenda.  In actuality these folks hate the fact that freedom of speech applies to everyday conversations between individuals, conversations which depict them as what they are, progressives hell bent on “change”.

This article has been cross posted to The Moral Liberal, a publication whose banner reads, “Defending The Judeo-Christian Ethic, Limited Government, & The American Constitution”.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Don’t Do Anything Stupid

Years ago, don’t think I’m supposed to start off a sentence like that; but years ago a few of my close friends at church would end the Sunday meeting block by saying to each other, “Don’t do anything stupid”.  We each knew how easy it was to make mistakes during the work week so we’d give this light hearted warning to each other.  The list of stupid things was wide open to our imagination; much like the scriptures that tell us to avoid sin, just be careful out there.

This afternoon I called one of my old buddies to let him know he should have called this morning with that warning, “Don’t do anything stupid”.  He immediately broke into a deep laugh while asking, “Okay, Stern, What’d you do this time?”  I then told him and remarked that perfection had yet to grab hold of me as he continued to laugh at such a prospect.

A Ford dealership called me out to make and program a set of keys for a 2001 Mustang which they had sitting on their entry drive.  The customer was waiting and a little upset that a Ford dealership couldn’t make the keys; but the car was ten years old and  Ford had already dumped the key codes.

Once the mechanical key was completed and turned in the ignition to set up the programming of the new transponder keys it was determined the battery was dead.  Subsequent to hooking up a set of jumper cables from my truck the after market alarm kicked in; seems the alarm system had been going off for quite some time and drained the battery.  The customer didn’t have the clicker and the bypass switch didn’t shut the noise maker off while the programming took place, wonderful!

The customer was present the whole time and watched as I explained how the old key (s) that were either lost of stolen would no longer be authorized or start that vehicle; she seemed relieved at hearing this information.  I then programmed the two new keys and demonstrated that they did indeed start the vehicle; the after market alarm sounding each time the key was turned.  I advised her to take the vehicle to where the after market alarm had been installed to acquire another clicker; but she said it had come with the car when she bought it and didn’t know where the alarm had been installed, believing it was a Ford alarm system.

I told her that she could cut the wire going to the sounding horn and still drive the car; but it would be better in the long run to have the after market alarm system removed.  I handed the bill to the service writer and got my purchase order. 

About half an hour later I got a call, “Who’d you give the keys to”?   I’d made sure Not to hand the keys to the lady who owned the car; my customer was the Ford dealership service people, the folks who were paying me.  A sinking feeling came over me as I realized the keys were in my pocket and I’d driven ten miles across town.  After all these years of training myself to make sure the customer handled the keys last, make sure they felt the key turn in the lock, make sure they liked the job; I still screwed up. 

Eating Humble Pie once in a while is healthy for mortals; just wish I didn’t get to eat it quite so often.  I suppose I should be grateful, could have been a lot worse; the customer might not have accepted my sincere apology for having done something dumb.  Here’s the message, “Don’t do anything stupid”, isn’t a one time reminder. 

This article has been cross posted to The Moral Liberal, a publication whose banner reads, “Defending The Judeo-Christian Ethic, Limited Government, & The American Constitution”.

This will also appear as a feature article on Fiercely Independent Locksmiths of America’s  website.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Government Approved Defense

Waking up in America each morning must be close to having Alzheimer’s; not really sure what memories are working and which are figments of imagination.  Take for example an article by Doug Ireland posted to the Eagle Tribune, Veto override expand NH deadly force law.  
“Local police are concerned public safety could be at risk after lawmakers voted yesterday to override the governor’s veto of a bill that allows people to use deadly force in public places.

The New Hampshire House voted, 251-111, to overturn the veto of Senate Bill 88 a week after the state Senate did the same.

Members of the Republican-dominated House praised the move, saying it gives New Hampshire residents the right to adequately protect themselves.

The previous law only allowed people to use a gun or other weapon to defend themselves in their own homes. The new law, which takes effect in 60 days, allows deadly force anywhere.”

Plenty of legislators vote on bills they haven’t read, have no clue as to the content and yet will stand in front of their constituents and claim to have represented them.  I guess the same is true about other important documents; they hold their arm to the square and pledge to uphold the Constitution without having read it.  These same folks want to protect our God given rights as found in the Bill of Rights; but only when it suits their agenda.

The Governor of New Hampshire vetoed a piece of legislation which need not have been written in the first place; individuals already have a God given right to defend themselves and it applies anywhere that individual might be attacked, it’s found in the 2nd Amendment.  

“A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”

A less controversial term would be “natural rights”, those which exist prior to the organization of government; perhaps the distinction between God given individual rights and natural rights is indeed relevant as “natural” marginalizes mankind’s relationship with God; we are, after all, made in His image.  (I’ll discount non-believers and their protestations regarding America’s dependence upon God without blinking.  When they’ve spent their last breathe and find themselves in the Spirit world somebody can explain it to them.)
There are many scriptures which testify of our being children of our Heavenly Father; however one which best applies to the discussion of self defense is found in Genesis 9:6.

“Whoso sheddeth man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man.” 

Think about that short verse; the acknowledgment of violent acts between men is explained along with the authorization to retaliate or prevent violence.  It doesn’t say the authority or responsibility rests with the police or justice department; individuals have the right to shed blood in response to violence.
There’s a short explanation of the Supreme Court’s District of Columbia v. Heller at which covered the essentials; or does it?

“Prior to the Supreme Court’s 2008 decision in District of Columbia v. Heller, the courts had yet to definitively state what right the Second Amendment protected. The opposing theories, perhaps oversimplified, were (1) an “individual rights” approach, whereby the Amendment protected individuals’ rights to firearm ownership, possession, and transportation; and (2) a “states’ rights” approach, under which the Amendment only protected the right to keep and bear arms in connection with organized state militia units. Moreover, it was generally believed that the Amendment was only a bar to federal action, not to state or municipal restraints.

However, the Supreme Court has now definitively held that the Second Amendment protects an individual’s right to possess a firearm unconnected with service in a militia, and to use that weapon for traditionally lawful purposes, such as self-defense within the home. Moreover, this right applies not just to the federal government, but to states and municipalities as well.”

Not wishing to appear obtuse; but where in the 2nd Amendment does it say an individual’s God given right to keep and bear Arms is limited to his/her home?  I’ll save you the trouble, it doesn’t.  Government is limited, an individuals right to keep and bear arms “shall not be infringed”.

The Constitution and Bill of Rights outline the Proper Role of Government and were intended to prevent government from infringing on those rights.  Many laws are poorly written, intentionally complicated and unnecessary; beyond that, a goodly portion have been passed in direct conflict with our Constitution and Bill of Rights.  Come Election Day wouldn’t it be important to elect representatives who’ve read and understand these documents?  We don’t need approval from government to defend ourselves; not in our homes or anywhere else, we already have that right!

This article has been cross posted to The Moral Liberal, a publication whose banner reads, “Defending The Judeo-Christian Ethic, Limited Government, & The American Constitution”.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Chicago Style Politics

Corruption seems to work its way into the conversation when the Obama administration gets involved; after all, it’s the Chicago way of doing things.  Fast and Furious is a bomb waiting to explode on the White House lawn depending on how far knowledge of the illegal operation went up the chain of command.  There are many who believe the operation was known all the way to the top; that Obama had given the okay to provide weapons to drug cartels.  We may never know the answer; witnesses seldom live to testify when it comes to Chicago style corruption.

Then there’s the Solyndra loan and subsequent bankruptcy which also threatens to blow up in Obama’s face.  Reputable sources have said the White House “pressured” the Energy Department to provide Solyndra a $528 million loan even though the company was already in trouble.

‘“A half a billion dollars that was not supported in January under the Bush administration was ... conditionally recommended in March,” Rep. Joe Barton, R-Texas, pointed out.”

I looked at the photograph which accompanied the lead story as it appeared on Fox News, Obama standing next to a fellow wearing the white lab coat with the Solyndra company logo in the background and had to wonder what was being explained.  “Mr. President, your cut will be safely stored away behind that stainless steel door.  Five white envelopes, each containing one million dollars in unmarked untraceable bills as you requested.”  This is pure speculation, but isn’t that the way it’s done Chicago style? 

This article has been cross posted to The Moral Liberal , a publication whose banner reads, “Defending The Judeo-Christian Ethic, Limited Government, & The American Constitution”.

Friday, September 09, 2011

American Jobs Act and Raccoons

President Obama’s jobs speech wasn’t much different than rhetoric used to bilk American tax payers on stimulus packages before.  Obama said, “Let’s pass this jobs bill right away”, even though it hasn’t been written or presented to Congress as yet.  This morning I recognized the similarities to something in my back yard, an empty container of cat food.  You read right, an empty container of cat food made me think of Obama’s call to pass a piece of legislation which nobody has read; this might take some explainin’.

Our garage has become a rest haven for Hobo Kitties along with an occasional skunk, opossum and raccoon.  These critters wander around the neighborhood and spot the Hobo’s X painted on the garage door, stop in for a drink of fresh water, a free meal and a safe place to hide if the elements are threatening.  Those animals which act half way civil to each other are permitted to stay while those who become “problematic” usually leave in a black plastic body bag.

The day starts by filling three bowls of cat food intended for the Hobo Kitties which lasts most of the day.  The huge communal water bowl doubles as a bathtub for opossums and raccoons each night so it has to be cleaned and replenished each morning or it looks more like a mud wrestling pit. 

At one time we kept a pair of five gallon heavy duty plastic containers filled with dry cat food in the garage; that is until the raccoons figured out how to unscrew the lids.  We came out one morning and they’d emptied both containers and eaten every last morsel.  Ten pounds of food “vanished like a fart in the wind”; a line the Warden used from the movie Shawshank Redemption that fit the situation.   From that day on we stored the large containers in the house, not exactly a Martha Stewart moment; it’s worked for better than a year now.  Once a week we transfer from the five gallon containers to more manageable containers which are lighter and have snap on lids that allow for pouring the dry food much easier. 

Last night after pouring half rations into the bowls, half rations so the Hobo Kitties will leave them completely empty and not encourage unwanted visitors like skunks, opossums and raccoons; I set the small container down and got distracted with some chore in the back yard.  This morning I went to feed the Hobo Kitties but the container was no where to be found, at least it wasn’t in the kitchen nook where it was supposed to be.  I looked out the back window and saw the lid sitting in a planter box where our tomato garden used to be and the empty container on the other side of the back yard; the raccoons had a party and had emptied a weeks worth of food in one sitting.

Do you see a similarity between raccoons raiding Hobo Kitty food stores and spending policies of the Obama administration?  Regardless of how much is put away for the future it all gets used up if given half a chance, and the next day, when the sun comes up a cry goes out for more to end the new crisis.

Arizona Sen. Jon Kyl, the No. 2 Republican in the Senate had this to say, according to an article at the Fox News :

“Faced with the reality of historic unemployment rates and record federal debt, I had hoped that President Obama, by now, would understand that even more government spending doesn't create jobs,” he said. “Rather than offer a new roadmap for recovery and reform, he merely dusted off a tired agenda of old ideas wrapped in freshly partisan rhetoric.”

In the same article:

“The president’s so-called jobs plan is to try those very same policies again and then accuse anyone who doesn't support them this time around of being political or overtly partisan, of not doing what's needed in this moment of crisis,” Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell said. “This isn’t a jobs plan. It’s a re-election plan.”

Obama wants to throw money away, money we don’t have, claiming it will go toward job creation; but jobs are not created by government, that part of the economy requires a growing economy based on supply and demand. 

The reason we’re in a recession is complex and won’t be solved by throwing money in the air for a few to grab up.  Folks who run businesses have good reason to be cautious as government places  mandates and restrictions on the market place.  This isn’t the time to expand or hire new employees because nobody knows which part of the free market system government will destroy or take over next. 

Don’t let Obama have another chance at raiding the treasury; it’s already been emptied.  Economic recovery, long term investments and job growth will have to wait until the raccoon has left the White House.    

This article has been cross posted to The Moral Liberal , a publication whose banner reads, “Defending The Judeo-Christian Ethic, Limited Government, & The American Constitution”.

Saturday, September 03, 2011

The blog has been revived

Yesterday my blog got redirected into oblivion; probably by something I did while working on the template; things like that should be kept out of the hands of folks like me.  I was trying to snatch the URL for a 9/11 Tribute which I’ve had on my sidebar so I could post it on Facebook.  That worked out great; no tribute and it locked my blog off the internet all at the same time.  

I was about to start a new blog to take its place when “Waha” the old blog showed up.  It looked a lot different and my side bar items were gone, including the 9/11 Tribute and all the places I visit regularly.  I was able to salvage some of the links; but if you notice yours is missing, send me an email letting me know, “Do you feel lucky, Punk…Well Do ya’?”

This is Labor Day Weekend so I might have time to do some “tweeking” to the way this blog thing looks.  I’d like to here from you, what you’d like to see added or deleted.