Posts Tagged ‘firefighters’

Thinking Of The 9/11 Tragedy. With Pride.

September 11, 2010

It’s been nine years.  But most Americans remember where they were when they first learned that a hijacked passenger jumbo jet had just slammed into the World Trade Center.

We also remember how we felt: the incomprehension, the shock, the fear and the anger.

A few moments stand out for me that give me pride to this day.

The Events That Took Place In the Skies Above Pennsylvania:

United Airlines flight 93 was a Boeing 757 on a morning Newark-to-San Francisco route. On 11 Sep 2001 the plane was hijacked by a four man hijacking team. Evidence suggests that the hijacking was apparently thwarted by the efforts of the plane’s passengers and flight attendants. The plane crashed southeast of Pittsburgh in Somerset County, Pennsylvania. The plan  was carrying 37 passengers and 7 crew members. There were no survivors.  Todd Beamer, a passenger, tried to place a credit card call but was routed to a customer service representative instead, who passed him on to supervisor Lisa Jefferson. She called the FBI. Beamer reported that one passenger was dead.  He asked if together they could pray the Lord’s prayer, which they did.  Later, he told the operator that some of the plane’s passengers were planning “to jump” the hijackers. The last words Ms. Jefferson heard from the plane were “Are you ready guys? Let’s roll.”  The plane crashed into a field near Shanksville, Pennsylvania at 10:03 AM, killing all aboard.  It is believed that this aircraft was intended to be crashed into the United States Capitol building in Washington, DC, Congress was in session at the time.

A shiver goes up my spine every time I try to visualize the raw courage of Todd Beamer and the beyond-heroic men and women who assisted him in taking back the plane so that it could not be used as a weapon against other Americans.  Even as they likely knew that they would surely die themselves.

I think particularly of Todd Beamer asking to pray with an operator whom he would never see in this life, and afterward that operator being able to recollect his last words, spoken to other passengers: “Are you ready guys?  Let’s roll.”

I feel pride.  and I pray, and hope, that I would have been like those heroes had I been on board that flight.

The Events Of The 343 Firefighters, Paramedics, And Police Officers:

As thousands of workers in the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center desperately fled down the stairs, there were heroes laboring their way up carrying their heavy gear.  Laboring up floor after floor, trying to make their way up to render aid when everyone around them was trying to make their way to safety.

Few if any of those men knew that they were climbing to their deaths.  But you know what?  I have a feeling that many of them would have kept on climbing even if they did know.  It was just who they were.

And on this day, I honor them.  And I’m proud of their sacrifice.

The Events On The Top Floors Of The World Trade Center:

One of the most vivid images in my mind was the footage of people in the top floors of the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center throwing themselves out of windows to their deaths to escape the raging inferno within that dying skyscraper.  We can only imagine their horrific and terrorized desperation in facing the nightmare choice of a certain death by fire, or a certain death by fall.

In the months afterward, I watched a program putting these events into a spiritual context.  If my memory serves, it was R.C. Sproul who had the made the most memorable impression in my soul.

He spoke of 9/11 representing both the greatest evil and the greatest good in the world, of the evil of the terrorists, and of the love exhibited by those who perished as a result of their evil.

He described how he imagined the final moments of those who had been in the top floors, unable to escape the inferno.  He focused on the image of many of those who threw themselves out of the building: how they leaped to their deaths holding hands with their fellow workers.

I can imagine a crying, terrorized secretary, afraid to jump, but even more terrified of the terrible heat and smoke, and the approaching roaring flames.  And I imagine someone telling her, “Come with me.  Hold my hand.  We’ll go together.”

And amidst all that evil, they leaped.  Holding hands.

What love.

The image brings tears of sorrow, that so many such anonymous, but such wonderful, people, died that day.  But it also brings pride.

What would you do in that situation?  I hope if I had to go out like that, someone would be holding my hand.

The Events Of The President’s Visit To The Ground Zero Site:

Another vivid memory for me was President George Bush’s so-called “bullhorn moment” on September 14, 2001 as he visited Ground Zero following the attack.

I had joined my brother and his family and my parents in a restaurant which had a giant screen television.  And that’s where I saw Bush step up – literally – and say a very few, but now very famous, words:

As described by eyewitness and participant Karl Rove, who documented the scene in his book, Courage and Consequence:

Bush was hearing and seeing the rescue workers up close.  They were not shy about sharing their feelings.  These men were working on adrenaline and passion and, after three days and increasingly less frequent good news about survivors, they were nearly spent.  Pataki was right; the presidential visit was energizing for many of the people we met.  Bush later told me what he felt from the workers was deep, almost overwhelming anger, even hatred. [...]

There was a tug on my sleave.  It was Nina Bishop, a White House advance woman working the event.  She pointed to the chanting workers and said, “They want to hear from their president.”  No one had prepared remarks, but she was exactly right…

I pointed at the battered fire truck.  Andy [Card] made a beeline to the president.  Nina had commandeered a bullhorn from a man who worked for Con Ed and met me at the fire truck with it.  The bullhorn’s batteries weren’t that good, but it was all we had…

The president took the bullhorn and reached his hand up to the rescue worker, a retired sixty-nine-year-old firefighter named Bob Beckwith.  Beckwith looked down into the scrum below him, saw the outstretched hand, grasped, and pulled.  In an instant, Bush was sharing the top of the truck with Beckwith, who suddenly realized he’d helped up the president of the United States.  Beckwith tried to crawl down but the president asked, “Where are you going?”  Bob said he was getting down.  Bush said, “No, no, you stay right here.”

The cheers and chanting subsided and the president started to speak into the bullhorn.  With the National Cathedral prayer service still fresh on his mind, Bush began by saying, “I want you all to know that America today is on bended knee in prayer for the people whose lives were lost here, for the workers who work here, for the families who mourn.  This nation stands with the good people of New York City and New Jersey and Connecticut as we mourn the loss of thousands of our citizens.”  Someone yelled, “Go get ‘em, George!”  Someone else yelled, “George, we can’t hear you!” and others echoed this complaint.  Bush paused and then responded in a voice now fully magnified by the bullhorn, “I can hear you.”  The crowd went nuts – and he knew what to do from there.  “The rest of the world hears you,” he went on, “and the people who knocked these buildings down will hear all of us soon.”  The crowd broke into defiant, even bitter, chants of “U.S.A.!  U.S.A.!”  Bush handed the bullhorn off and he climbed down.

In an iconic moment, George Bush was very much alone with an enormous responsibility.  The nation wanted reassurance; it wanted to know it had a leader who understood the mission America now faced.  No speechwriters, no aides, no advisers were involved in Bush’s response.  It was an authentic moment that connected with the public in a strong, deep way.  Without assistance and in an instant, George Bush gave voice to America’s desires.

Seeing President Bush hop up on that busted truck and stand shoulder to shoulder with a weary firefighter is a sight forever etched in my mind, and for many it remains one of the most inspiring scenes from the terrible events of 9/11.  Presidential historian Douglas Brinkley’s assessment of Bush’s visit to Ground Zero was prophetic: “We can’t just judge him as President Bush anymore, but we’re going to soon be judging him as commander-in-chief.”

Karl Rove, Courage and Consequence, pp 277-279

President George Bush was at his finest moment when the country needed him the most.

The Events Of Our Very Greatest Americans: The Congressional Medal Of Honor Recipients:

Our soldiers are all heroes, these days.  You don’t volunteer to serve in today’s military without realizing that you may very well be called upon to serve in a combat zone.  And with terrorism and the tactics used by terrorist fighters, anyone can suddenly find himself or herself on the front lines.

I’ve marveled at our soldiers and Marines since the first footage showed them ready to go into battle.  And from those first days to the present, they have been magnificent.

I am so proud of them, so proud of what they have accomplished, and so proud that these incredible men and women wear the flag that I cherish.

I obviously can’t name them all, and tell all of their stories.  But here are the stories of the greatest of the great: our Congressional Medal of Honor recipients:

  • Salvatore Giunta, Staff Sergeant, B Company, 2nd Battalion, 503rd Infantry Regiment, 173rd Infantry Brigade (Airborne), US Army
  • Robert James Miller, Staff Sergeant, A Company, 3rd Battalion, 3rd Special Forces Group (Airborne), US Army
  • Jared C. Monti, Sgt 1st Class, 3rd Squadron, 71st Cavalry, 10th Mountain Division, US Army
  • Michael P. Murphy, Lieutenant, Alpha Platoon, SEAL Delivery Vehicle Team ONE (SDVT-1), US Navy
  • Jason Dunham, Corporal, 4th Platoon, Company K, 3rd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment (3/7), 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, USMC
  • Ross A. McGinnis, Specialist,1st Platoon, C Company, 1st Battalion, 26th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, US Army
  • Paul R. Smith, Sgt 1st Class, B Company, 11th Engineer Battalion, 3rd Infantry Division, US Army

These men, in receiving this the highest award for valor, have transcended themselves, and rightly epitomize the greatest attributes of not just soldiers, sailors, and Marines, but of human beings.  I think of the words of Jesus, “Greater love has no one than this, than that he lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:13).

On this 9/11, I remember that the United States was attacked by men who had murdered their very own humanity in the name of a rabid religious ideology before they murdered nearly 3,000 Americans.  I remember that we are at war, whether all of us recognize it or not.  And I remember that we must hold the same steely resolve to fight against an adversary who practices no rules, has no compassion, and stops at no moral or rational limits.

But most of all, I remember the men and women who gave us the greatest possible example of love, of courage, of sacrifice, and of both the human and American spirit.

And I’m proud to be an American, because I am surrounded by such a cloud of magnificent heroes.

Thank you, Lord, for producing these magnificent men and women.

And Lord, please make more of them and keep them coming.  For we surely need others like them.

When America Goes To Hell, Rest Assured It Will Be Leftists Resorting To Violence, Too

May 7, 2010

Let’s see.  Union workers, students, anarchists.  Liberals, liberals, liberals.  Check, check, check.

You should seriously pay attention to what’s happening in Greece, because it’s coming here next.  And the same leftists that are rioting there will be rioting here.  Because that’s just the kind of vermin that leftists are, quite frankly.

The only difference is that there will be no EU to bail us out.  When Obama’s massive debts implode us, there will be no one to save us.

MAY 5, 2010
Europe Crisis Deepens as Chaos Grips Greece
By SEBASTIAN MOFFETT And ALKMAN GRANITSAS

Demonstrators smashed shop windows, overturned garbage bins and set fire to at least two businesses.

ATHENS—Greece’s fiscal crisis took a new turn to violence Wednesday when three people died in a firebomb attack amid a paralyzing national strike, while governments from Spain to the U.S. took steps to prevent the widening financial damage from hitting their own economies.

U.S. Treasury officials have been quietly urging their European and International Monetary Fund counterparts to put together a Greek rescue plan more quickly to contain the damage, it emerged Wednesday, as U.S. policy makers worry the continent’s problems could undermine a U.S. recovery much as U.S. housing woes hammered Europe in 2008.

In Spain, rival political leaders came together Wednesday with an agreement that aims to shore up shaky savings banks by the end of next month. Banks in France and Germany, which are among Greece’s top creditors, pledged to support a Greek bailout by continuing to lend to the country. Investors, meanwhile, are pouring money into bonds of countries seen as less exposed to the crisis, from Russia to Egypt.

Anxiety over the euro-zone economies sent the euro down to about 1.29 to the dollar, its lowest level in more than a year. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell for the second straight day, losing 58.65 points, or 0.54%, to close at 10868.12.

Greece’s 24-hour nationwide general strike brought much of the country to a standstill, closing government offices and halting flights, trains and ferries.

At the same time, tens of thousands of protesters marched through Athens in the largest and most violent protests since the country’s budget crisis began last fall. Angry youths rampaged through the center of Athens, torching several businesses and vehicles and smashing shop windows. Protesters and police clashed in front of parliament and fought running street battles around the city.

Witnesses said hooded protesters smashed the front window of Marfin Bank in central Athens and hurled a Molotov cocktail inside. The three victims died from asphyxiation from smoke inhalation, the Athens coroner’s office said. Four others were seriously injured there, fire department officials said.
Europe’s Debt Crisis

A police spokesman said eight fires in Athens office buildings and bank buildings had been brought under control.

Later Wednesday, black smoke billowed from fires on one of Athens’s main shopping streets. Glass shards and smoldering garbage littered the sidewalks.

Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou condemned the violence. “Everyone has the right to protest,” he said in a statement to parliament. “But no one has the right to violence and especially violence that leads to the death of our compatriots.”

Wednesday’s protests were sparked by Greece’s weekend agreement to adopt austerity measures in exchange for a €110 billion ($143 billion) bailout loan from the European Union and the IMF. Unions challenged Greece’s parliament, which could consider the measures as soon as Thursday, to vote them down.

The general strike marks the broadest challenge to date to the government of Mr. Papandreou, which is pressed to pass the austerity legislation to unlock bailout funds to meet a debt payment later this month that it otherwise couldn’t meet.

The protests also brought out many Greeks who were resigned to belt-tightening. Their unhappiness at the cuts was matched with rancor toward a generation of politicians who they say spurred the crisis with decades of corruption, kickbacks and accounting legerdemain aimed at obscuring to the EU the true level of Greece’s annual deficits.

“For 30 years the Greek people have been held hostage,” said Periandros Athanassakis, 48, a garbage collector in Piraeus, the port near Athens. “Those who stole the money should pay.”

Some officials saw in Wednesday’s protests the seeds of broader discontent. “We may have an uprising in the making,” one senior Greek official said.

Greeks generally don’t blame Mr. Papandreou for the country’s problems, however, saying he inherited them from predecessors. It was his administration, elected in October, that announced the government’s budget deficit for 2009 would be equivalent around 13% of gross domestic product, compared with the 6% claimed by the previous administration.

Mr. Papandreou’s approval ratings are higher than those of the leader of the main opposition party.

Analysts also said the shock of Wednesday’s deaths could nudge Greece’s fractious political parties toward closer cooperation in dealing with the crisis and making it easier to pass reforms.

“This changes the political scene,” said George Sefertzis, an independent political commentator with the Athens consultancy Evresis. “There is no doubt that the deaths ease some of the political pressure.”

Under terms of the bailout deal, Greece’s government has announced a €30 billion package that will slash public-sector wages, cut pensions, freeze public- and private-sector pay, liberalize Greece’s labor laws and raise some taxes.

In Berlin on Wednesday, Chancellor Angela Merkel called on parliament to approve Germany’s contribution of €22.4 billion in loans to Greece. German public opinion opposes a Greek bailout but Ms. Merkel said it was essential. “Europe stands at a crossroad,” she said. “With us, with Germany, there can and will be a decision which lives up to the political, historical situation.”

In Greece’s northern city of Thessaloniki, there were reports of violence as police clashed with demonstrators who were attacking shop fronts amid a rally that drew at least 20,000 protesters to the streets.

Police officials estimated there were 20,000 protesters in Athens. Union officials said union-affiliated protesters alone totaled more than 60,000. Others put the number higher still. “This rally was double the size of the largest rally that has ever been held in Greece,” said Spyros Papaspyros, president of Adedy, a civil-service umbrella union. “If the government doesn’t listen, there will be more strike action next week.”

The day’s general strike, the year’s third, shut ministries and public offices. State hospitals and public utilities operated with skeleton staff. Shopkeepers joined the strike at midday, while journalists, bank workers, teachers, court workers, lawyers and doctors also walked off the job.

Many Greeks taking part in the demonstration saw little alternative than to accept the government measures and brace for a long, deep recession.

“I don’t expect the measures to be withdrawn,” said Pericles Papapetrou, 61, an architect and engineer who used to be mayor of the town of Elefsina. But, he said, the measures “could lead to extreme situations, such as an increase in crime, and also to an explosion of young people with no future.”

Artemis Batzak Panayou, a cleaning lady working for a local government, saw her €1,200 monthly salary, on which she supports three children, cut by €250 at the beginning of the year. She believes it will fall further. “There is no way to survive on the daily wages in the public sector,” she said, adding: “Greece won’t be fixed until all the crooks are removed from government.”
—Costas Paris and Nick Skrekas contributed to this article.

Right now, as we speak, we’ve got union firefighters are quite likely burning down a rash of buildings to “protest” that they aren’t getting more benefits than the outrageous benefits they’re already getting.

We’ve certainly already seen outright violence erupting at anti-Arizona law protest events.  And the Arizona law isn’t even in effect yet.

You watch.  The actual violence has nearly always come from the left in this country.  And it will surely be the case again.

The other thing that was interesting today is that the primary reason for our massive stock slide (and the double-digit slide on six of the last seven trading days) is Greece.  And Greece is crashing because it is a liberal socialist economy that imploded due to the same policies Obama is trying to bring to our shores now.

Which is to say that what will happen soon in America is that America will fail due to liberalism, and then liberals will violently riot in the streets.

Who ‘Acted Stupidly’? The Cop, The Professor, Or The President?

July 24, 2009

We have a situation in which a police officer placed a man who turned out to be a Harvard professor of African-American Studies under arrest for disorderly conduct.  And then we have a situation in which the President of the United States of America decides to directly involve himself in his role as Racial-Arbiter-in-Chief.

The best place to begin is with the facts.  A neighbor saw two men attempting to force their way into a home that had already sustained an attempted break-in previously that week.  The police arrived.

And then, from excerpts of the police report (the full actual report is available in PDF format here):

On Thursday July 16, 2009, Henry Gates, Jr. – -, of Ware Street, Cambridge, MA) was placed under arrest at Ware Street, after being observed exhibiting loud and tumultuous behavior, in a public place, directed at a uniformed police officer who was present investigating a report of a crime in progress. These actions on the behalf of Gates served no legitimate purpose and caused citizens passing by this location to stop and take notice while appearing surprised and alarmed.

When I arrived at Ware Street I radioed ECC and asked that they have the caller meet me at the front door to this residence. I was told that the caller was already outside. As I was getting this information, I climbed the porch stairs toward the front door. As I reached the door, a female voice called out to me. I looked in the direction of the voice and observed a white female, later identified {} who was standing on the sidewalk in front of the residence, held a wireless telephone in her hand arid told me that it was she who called. She went on to tell me that she observed what appeared to be two black males with backpacks on the porch of• Ware Street. She told me that her suspicions were aroused when she observed one of the men wedging his shoulder into the door as if he was trying to force entry. Since I was the only police officer on location and had my back to the front door as I spoke with her, I asked that she wait for other responding officers while I investigated further.

As I turned and faced the door, I could see an older black male standing in the foyer of {} Ware Street. I made this observation through the glass paned front door. As I stood in plain view of this man, later identified as Gates, I asked if he would step out onto the porch and speak with me. He replied “no I will not”. He then demanded to know who I was. I told him that I was “Sgt. Crowley from the Cambridge Police” and that I was “investigating a report of a break in progress” at the residence. While I was making this statement, Gates opened the front door and exclaimed “why, because I’m a black man in America?”.   I then asked Gates if there was anyone else in the residence. While yelling, he told me that it was none of my business and accused me of being a racist police officer. I assured Gates that I was responding to a citizen’s call to the Cambridge Police and that the caller was outside as we spoke. Gates seemed to ignore me and picked up a cordless telephone and dialed an unknown telephone number. As he did so, I radioed on channel I that I was off in the residence with someone who appeared to be a resident but very uncooperative. I then overheard Gates asking the person on the other end of his telephone call to “get the chief’ and “what’s the chiefs name?’.   Gates was telling the person on the other end of the call that he was dealing with a racist police officer in his home.  Gates then turned to me and told me that I had no idea who I was “messing” with and that I had not heard the last of it.  While I was led to believe that Gates was lawfully in the residence, I was quite surprised and confused with the behavior he exhibited toward me.  I asked Gates to provide me with photo identification so that I could verify that he resided at Ware Street and so that I could radio my findings to ECC. Gates initially refused, demanding that I show him identification but then did supply me with a Harvard University identification card. Upon learning that Gates was affiliated with Harvard, I radioed and requested the presence of the Harvard University Police.

With the Harvard University identification in hand, I radioed my findings to ECC on channel two and prepared to leave. Gates again asked for my name which I began to provide. Gates began to yell over my spoken words by accusing me of being a racist police officer and leveling threats that he wasn’t someone to mess with. At some point during this exchange, I became aware that Off. Carlos Figueroa was standing behind me. When Gates asked a third time for my name, I explained to him that I had provided it at his request two separate times. Gates continued to yell at me. I told Gates that I was leaving his residence and that if he had any other questions regarding the matter, I would speak with him outside of the residence.

As I began walking through the foyer toward the front door, I could hear Gates again demanding my name. I again told Gates that I would speak with him outside. My reason for wanting to leave the residence was that Gates was yelling very loud and the acoustics of the kitchen and foyer were making it difficult for me to transmit pertinent information to ECC or other responding units. His reply was “ya, I’ll speak with your mama outside”. When I left the residence, I noted that there were several Cambridge and Harvard University police officers assembled on the sidewalk in front of the residence. Additionally, the caller, Ms. Walen and at least seven unidentified passers-by were looking in the direction of Gates, who had followed me outside of the residence.

As I descended the stairs to the sidewalk, Gates continued to yell at me, accusing me of racial bias and continued to tell me that I had not heard the last of him. Due to the tumultuous manner Gates had exhibited in his residence as well as his continued tumultuous behavior outside the residence, in view of the public, I warned Gates that he was becoming disorderly. Gates ignored my warning and continued to yell, which drew the attention of both the police officers and citizens, who appeared surprised and alarmed by Gates’s outburst. For a second time I warned Gates to calm down while I withdrew my department issued handcuffs from their carrying case. Gates again ignored my warning and continued to yell at me. It was at this time that I informed Gates that he was under arrest. I then stepped up the stairs, onto the porch and attempted to place handcuffs on Gates. Gates initially resisted my attempt to handcuff him, yelling that he was “disabled” and would fall without his cane. After the handcuffs were property applied, Gates complained that they were too tight. I ordered Off. Ivey, who was among the responding officers, to handcuff Gates with his arms in front of him for his comfort while I secured a cane for Gates from within the residence. I then asked Gates if he would like an officer to take possession of his house key and secure his front door, which he left wide open. Gates told me that the door was unsecurable due to a previous break attempt at the residence. Shortly thereafter, a Harvard University maintenance person arrived on scene and appeared familiar with Gates. I asked Gates if he was comfortable with this Harvard University maintenance person securing his residence. He told me that he was.

And then there’s the President of the United States, feeling the need to directly involve himself in a report of a break-in and a disorderly conduct arrest:

Q Thank you, Mr. President. Recently, Professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr. was arrested at his home in Cambridge. What does that incident say to you? And what does it say about race relations in America?

PRESIDENT OBAMA: Well, I — I should say at the outset that Skip Gates is a friend, so I may be a little biased here.

I don’t know all the facts. What’s been reported, though, is that the guy forgot his keys, jimmied his way to get into the house; there was a report called into the police station that there might be a burglary taking place.

So far, so good, right? I mean, if I was trying to jigger into — well, I guess this is my house now, so — (laughter) — it probably wouldn’t happen.

(Chuckling.) But let’s say my old house in Chicago — (laughter) — here I’d get shot. (Laughter.) But so far, so good. They’re — they’re — they’re reporting. The police are doing what they should. There’s a call. They go investigate. What happens?

My understanding is, at that point, Professor Gates is already in his house. The police officer comes in. I’m sure there’s some exchange of words. But my understanding is — is that Professor Gates then shows his ID to show that this is his house, and at that point he gets arrested for disorderly conduct, charges which are later dropped.

Now, I’ve — I don’t know, not having been there and not seeing all the facts, what role race played in that. But I think it’s fair to say, number one, any of us would be pretty angry; number two, that the Cambridge police acted stupidly in arresting somebody when there was already proof that they were in their own home.

And number three, what I think we know separate and apart from this incident is that there is a long history in this country of African-Americans and Latinos being stopped by law enforcing disproportion ately. That’s just a fact.

As you know, Lynn, when I was in the state legislature in Illinois, we worked on a racial profiling bill because there was indisputable evidence that blacks and Hispanics were being stopped disproportionately. And that is a sign, an example of how, you know, race remains a factor in the society.

That doesn’t lessen the incredible progress that has been made. I am standing here as testimony to the progress that’s been made. And yet the fact of the matter is, is that, you know, this still haunts us.

And even when there are honest misunderstandings, the fact that blacks and Hispanics are picked up more frequently, and oftentime for no cause, casts suspicion even when there is good cause. And that’s why I think the more that we’re working with local law enforcement to improve policing techniques so that we’re eliminating potential bias, the safer everybody’s going to be.

We find out in addition that the police officer, Sgt. James Crowley, actually teaches courses on racial profiling at Lowell Police Acadamy, and has been teaching the course there for five years.  We find out that Sgt. Crowley receives no pay for teaching the class, and that he drives from Cambridge to Middlesex Community College in Lowell.  And we find out that he is an incredibly well-respected police officer.

Okay.  So here’s your test: WHO was “acting stupidly”?

For the record, it is black men like Henry Louis Gates who make the charge “racist” utterly meaningless to me.  Because the only way I could be any more racist than Gates is if I went to weekly meetings wearing a white robe and a pointy hat.

Personally, I have to give a tie to Professor Henry Louis Gates and President Barack Obama.  Gates is clearly an arrogant hard-core racist jerk who deserved to be seriously beaten with a baton, let alone arrested.  And Barack Obama is clearly an arrogant, hard-core fool who should have kept his stupid mouth shut rather than join Gates in throwing around charges of racism.

Mouthing off to police officers is a bad idea, and Henry Louis Gates officially disqualified himself from the roles of reasonable and intelligent people for having so remarkably mouthed off with so little provocation.  And Harvard University is clearly an inferior academic institution for having such pathetic, angry, bitter, nasty, racist psychos on its payroll as “faculty.”

I am a law-abiding citizen, yet I have had several similar encounters with the police.  On one occasion, I was ordered off my motorcycle (back when I had one), and ordered to interlock my fingers behind my neck and drop to my knees on the side of a highway.  I hadn’t mouthed off in any way, or given any cause to believe that I was a threat when the black police officer gave me the order.  And the officer’s tone had been, “Do it now or I will shoot you.”  He inspected me for weapons and inspected my bags, before clearing me to stand up.  When I asked why he had treated me this way, the officer curtly answered, “You matched the general description of a robbery suspect.”  No, “Gee, I’m really sorry.  It must have been kind of embarrassing kneeling on the side of the road with your arms over your head like that and all them cars driving by.”

I thought the officer was a complete jerk.  But it never even occurred to me to think that this black authority figure was a racist out to get even with whitey.  Primarily because I’d already had three earlier unfortunate wrong-place-wrong-time situations with rude police officers who were white.  Once I’d been loudly cursed at by a police officer who was manning a perimeter check point when I tried to tell him I’d just seen the man they were probably looking for and noted the direction he was running.  Another time I was ordered out of my car at literal gunpoint out in the desert.  I had gone out there to walk my Rottweiler, and the officer was treating the situation as a possible stolen car incident.

It’s partially because police officers are always potentially about to be shot at, and partially because law enforcement just too often attracts men and women who get off exercising authority, that civilians often feel like they are being treated rudely.

In the particular case of Sgt. James Crowley and Professor Henry Louis Gates, it seems clear to me that Crowley was in the former category of “potentially about to be shot at,” while Gates was in the latter category of “get off exercising authority.”

Blacks often talk about racism being about an unequal power relationship.  Well, the racists in this particular situation are the powerful men in society: a privileged Harvard University professor, and a President of the United States.  And the victim of racism is an honest, blue collar working man.

How dare you accuse such a man of racism, Professor Gates?  How dare you, President Obama?  You were the two men who acted stupidly, and you are the two men who should feel ashamed of yourselves.

Is Barack Obama a racist? As far as I’m concerned, he’s now got three strikes.  Strike one was belonging to a thoroughly racist church under Jeremiah Wright for 23 years.  Strike two was his appointment of a “wise Latina judge” who had imposed a racist ruling penalizing white firefighters just for being white.  And strike three is standing up for a racist bigot like Gates – who apparently becomes the next thoroughly racist extremist bigot Obama would no more disown than his own white grandmother – and associating Sgt. Crowley with racism and racial profiling when he didn’t know the facts of the case by his own admission is strike three.

It’s not the police officer who should be defending himself against allegations of racism.  It’s Henry Louis Gates.  And it’s Barack Obama.  Obama should be asked every single day, “How dare you defend the kind of racist behavior your good friend Henry Gates exhibited toward that poor white police officer who was just trying to do his job?”

Sotomayor: ‘Let’s Put a Judge Who Has Been Constantly Overruled By SCOTUS Where She Can’t Possibly Be Overruled’

July 14, 2009

Empathy.  Who doesn’t want some?

I mean, I suppose that some part of me, as a conservative, would love for some judge to come along and say, “There, there, I’ll make sure those mean Democrats don’t do stuff you don’t want.  I’ll overturn the election.”

Only that isn’t the direction the “empathy” crap flows.  It only seems to flow from the far left.  It is a river of molten manure that springs and flows from the radical left and routinely runs its banks over conservatives and ordinary Americans.

In the case of Sonia Sotomayor, that crap river flowed right over New Haven, Connecticut firefighters who made the mistake of playing by the rules against a system increasingly geared toward running all over them as white males.  But it is a river that would have ran over every single American to the tune of billions of dollars had the Supreme Court not reversed her decision.

Here’s that story:

Sotomayor Ruling Could Have Cost Consumers Billions

Tuesday, May 26, 2009 10:56 PM

By: Phil Brennan

A decision rendered by Obama Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor, fortunately reversed by the Supreme Court on April 1, 2009, could have been extravagantly costly to American consumers, according to the Steve Milloy’s authoritative Junkscience.Com.

Charging that her nomination represents a potential threat to U.S. Consumers and to the economy in terms of energy and the environment, Milloy reported on her 2007 Second Circuit decision in Riverkeeper, Inc. V. EPA 475 F. 3d 83′

Milloy wrote that in her ruling Judge Sotomayor sided with “extreme green groups” who had sued the Environmental Protection Agency because the agency permitted cost-benefit analysis to be used in the determination of environmental protection technology for power plant cooling water intake structures.

Cost benefit analysis involves the balancing of the total expected costs of a proposal or project against its total expected benefits in order to determine its economic feasibility. Do the benefits outweigh or justify the cost?

According to Milloy, had the EPA been required to abide by Judge Sotomayor’s decision, U.S. Consumers would have been forced to pay billions of dollars more in energy costs every year as power plants producing more than one-half of the nation’s electricity would have had to undertake expensive retrofits.”

Noting that President Obama said he wanted somebody “who has the intellectual firepower but also a little bit of a common touch and a practical sense of how the world works,” Milloy said that in the Riverkeeper case Sotomayor didn’t display too much of a “common touch” and “practical sense” when it came to the cost-benefit analysis.

Senators, Milloy advised, should probe whether Judge Sotomayor “lacks the common-sense realization that the benefits of environmental regulation ought to outweigh its costs — a worldview with ominous implications given the nation’s present rush toward cap-and-tax global warming regulation and other green mindlessness.”

Indeed, writing for the majority decision that overturned Sotomayor’s ruling, Justice Antonin Scalia:

noted that forcing compliance under Sotomayor’s reasoning would make companies spend nine times the amount necessary to accomplish “nearly the same benefit to the environment that cheaper technologies would achieve.”

Spend nine times more for very nearly the same benefit.  And liberals wonder why conservatives call them “insane.”

Now, it just so happens that “common touch” and “practical sense” didn’t matter very much when we voted for our president, either.  So why should it matter to us when we put yet another black-robed master over us for the rest of her life?

Let’s hear what Obama said he wanted:

“Under my plan of a cap and trade system, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket.”

The guy we voted for as our president said he planned to bankrupt fully half of our source of electricity.

“Empathy” means millions of Americans freezing to death in the dark.

Get ready for it.  Because Obama’s and Sotomayor’s crap river is going to flood right down your family’s throat.

Looking over Sotomayor’s record indicates that she doesn’t have a whole lot of legal sense, either.  She has had her cases overruled six out of seven of the times that they have come before the Supreme Court.  That is how radical, and how incompetent as a judge, she truly is.

Cases Reviewed by the Supreme Court

• Ricci v. DeStefano 530 F.3d 87 (2008) —decision pending as of 5/26/2009 [update as of 6/29/09: reversed 5-4 (Dissenting: Stevens, Souter, Ginsburg, Breyer)].

• Riverkeeper, Inc. vs. EPA, 475 F.3d 83 (2007) — reversed 6-3 (Dissenting: Stevens, Souter, Ginsburg)

• Knight vs. Commissioner, 467 F.3d 149 (2006) — upheld, but reasoning was unanimously faulted

• Dabit vs. Merrill Lynch, 395 F.3d 25 (2005) — reversed 8-0

• Empire Healthchoice Assurance, Inc. vs. McVeigh, 396 F.3d 136 (2005) — reversed 5-4 (Dissenting: Breyer, Kennedy, Souter, Alito)

• Malesko v. Correctional Services Corp., 299 F.3d 374 (2000) — reversed 5-4 (Dissenting: Stevens, Souter, Ginsburg, Breyer)

• Tasini vs. New York Times, et al, 972 F. Supp. 804 (1997) — reversed 7-2 (Dissenting: Stevens, Breyer)

Sonia Sotomayor is a judge who has been humiliated with an 8-0 smackdown of her judicial reasoning.  She has been overruled – meaning her legal judgment was contradicted as wrong – six out of seven times.  And if that isn’t bad enough, the ONLY time her decision was actually upheld (Knight vs. Commissioner), her reasoning for the decision was faulted by every single judge on the panel.

In the recent Hew Haven Firefighter case (a.k.a. Ricci v. DeStefano), Sotomayor was not only overruled on the close 5-4 as was reported;  her underlying legal reasoning that compliance with Title VII justified “race-based preferences” as a matter of summary judgment was tossed aside by all nine justices.

So what do you do when you have a judge who has displayed such a shocking lack of common sense that she would have imposed billions of dollars on the American taxpayer to accomplish virtually nothing had her decision not been overruled by the Supreme Court?  What do you do when you have a judge who has been overruled six out of seven times by the Supreme Court?

You put such a judge on the supreme court, where she cannot possibly be overruled, that’s what.

Sonia Sotomayor has said, “I would hope that a wise Latina woman with the richness of her experiences would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a white male who hasn’t lived that life.”  And she said it not once, as was earlier maintained by liberals, but seven times.  There’s no defense of such a remark made even once, let alone seven separate times.  All one has to do to see how racist it is is to replace the words “Latina woman” with “white male” and the words “white male” with “Latina woman.”

And where do you put a judge who is clearly influenced by racial – and frankly racist – thinking?  On the Supreme Court, where her racial bias can become a fixed part of the institution for a generation to come.

Sotomayor’s ‘Empathy’ For Extreme Green Groups Would Have Cost Americans Billions

June 1, 2009

Empathy.  Who doesn’t want some?

I mean, I suppose that some part of me, as a conservative, would love for some judge to come along and say, “There, there.  I’ll make sure those mean Democrats don’t do stuff you don’t want.  I’ll overturn the election.”

Only that isn’t the direction the “empathy river” flows, is it?  It’s a manure river that springs and flows from the radical left and routinely runs its banks to flood over conservatives.

In the case of Sonia Sotomayor, that crap river has run pretty deep and pretty wide.  It has run over white firefighters who made the mistake of playing by the rules against a racially-biased system increasingly geared to flood over them.  And in the case of Sotomayor, it is a river that would have flooded over every single American to the tune of billions of dollars had the Supreme Court not reversed her decision.

If Sotomayor gets appointed to the Supreme Court, you can bet that THIS crap river will be flowing over you soon:

Sotomayor Ruling Could Have Cost Consumers Billions

Tuesday, May 26, 2009
By: Phil Brennan

A decision rendered by Obama Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor, fortunately reversed by the Supreme Court on April 1, 2009, could have been extravagantly costly to American consumers, according to the Steve Milloy’s authoritative Junkscience.Com.

Charging that her nomination represents a potential threat to U.S. Consumers and to the economy in terms of energy and the environment, Milloy reported on her 2007 Second Circuit decision in Riverkeeper, Inc. V. EPA 475 F. 3d 83′

Milloy wrote that in her ruling Judge Sotomayor sided with “extreme green groups” who had sued the Environmental Protection Agency because the agency permitted cost-benefit analysis to be used in the determination of environmental protection technology for power plant cooling water intake structures.

Cost benefit analysis involves the balancing of the total expected costs of a proposal or project against its total expected benefits in order to determine its economic feasibility. Do the benefits outweigh or justify the cost?

According to Milloy, had the EPA been required to abide by Judge Sotomayor’s decision, U.S. Consumers would have been forced to pay billions of dollars more in energy costs every year as power plants producing more than one-half of the nation’s electricity would have had to undertake expensive retrofits.”

Noting that President Obama said he wanted somebody “who has the intellectual firepower but also a little bit of a common touch and a practical sense of how the world works,” Milloy said that in the Riverkeeper case Sotomayor didn’t display too much of a “common touch” and “practical sense” when it came to the cost-benefit analysis.

Senators, Milloy advised, should probe whether Judge Sotomayor “lacks the common-sense realization that the benefits of environmental regulation ought to outweigh its costs — a worldview with ominous implications given the nation’s present rush toward cap-and-tax global warming regulation and other green mindlessness.”

What is truly sad, truly pathetic, and truly laughable (in a hysterical-laughing-into-a-crying-jag-whilest-curled-up-in-a-fetal-position sort of way) is that Americans have already said, “Please, sir, may we have some more” when it comes to massive energy taxes that will do to our economy what a German U-boat did to the Lusitania.

Judge Sotomayor clearly doesn’t have a whole lot of that “common touch” or “practical sense.”  Indeed, writing for the majority decision that overturned Sotomayor’s ruling, Justice Antonin Scalia:

noted that forcing compliance under Sotomayor’s reasoning would make companies spend nine times the amount necessary to accomplish “nearly the same benefit to the environment that cheaper technologies would achieve.”

Spend nine times more for very nearly the same benefit.  And liberals wonder why conservatives call them “insane.”

Now, it just so happens that “common touch” and “practical sense” didn’t matter very much when we voted for our president, either.  So why should it matter to us when we put yet another black-robed master over us for the rest of her life?

Let’s hear what Obama said he wanted:

“Under my plan of a cap and trade system, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket.”

The guy we voted for as our president said he planned to bankrupt fully half of our source of electricity.

“Empathy” means millions of Americans freezing to death in the dark.

Get ready for it.  Because Obama’s and Sotomayor’s crap river is going to flood right down your family’s throat.


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