Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Picture this?


Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Guard the Borders Blogburst

by Heidi at Euphoric Reality


The new immigration bill (the most "sweeping reform in 50 years") S. 2611 is an amalgam of petty causes, illogical provisions, unstructured "solutions" with zero allowances for implementation, and self-contradictory language. Despite the mess, it was passed by self-righteous politicians who repeated the mantra "it's better than doing nothing." This from the same gaggle of do-nothings who outright rejected the House's law enforcement bill.

The Senate bill has our President's full support - this same bill is a derivative of one structured by Ted Kennedy and John McCain, and supported in full by the majority of Democrats. That alone ought to give one pause - President Bush, a Democrat?

Peggy Noonan says, "The disinterest in the White House and among congressional Republicans in establishing authority on America's borders is so amazing--the people want it, the age of terror demands it--that great histories will be written about it."

She opines that it is possible that..."the administration's slow and ambivalent action is the result of being lost in some geopolitical-globalist abstract-athon that has left them puffed with the rightness of their superior knowledge, sure in their membership in a higher brotherhood, and looking down on the low concerns of normal Americans living in America.

I continue to believe the administration's problem is not that the base lately doesn't like it, but that the White House has decided it actually doesn't like the base."

S. 2611 is less about law, and more about a weird, mutant agenda that melds licentiousness with an utter disregard for the end result. There are quite a few details in S. 2611 that the media has ignored and that the legislators would rather you know nothing about. Some were provisions germane to the original Kennedy-McCain bill or the pseudo revision of Hagel-Martinez, the rest are amendments that required separate votes to accept or reject. Here's what you need to know about the Senate's fiasco.


The Senate failed to pass an amendment that would've made amnesty contingent on effectively securing the border. Their priorities are completely opposite those of the American people, who have repeatedly made it clear that our borders must be secured before anything else. Furthermore, buried in Arlen Specter's manager's package, an amendment proposed by Dodd makes it mandatory for our government to consult with Mexico before taking any security action along the border, to include building any barrier or any enforcement along the border. This includes everything from federal troops, and state-mobilized National Guard, down to local law enforcement. In other words, even if a county sheriff mobilizes a posse to guard the border, he must clear it first through Mexico. This effectively gives the Mexican government veto power over our national security concerns!

We've heard a lot about the 6,000 National Guard troops, assigned to help with back-up duties in order to free up Border Patrol agents. Unfortunately, that will make only 500 additional agents available to apprehend and detain lawbreakers at the border.

The White House adamantly insists that Guard troops take no role in law enforcement, even though, so long as they are under the command of their governors—as they will be under the president’s proposal—they are allowed to do so. Republicans worry that when the Guard shows up for duty, Lou Dobbs’ cameras won’t be far behind, recording their impotence as they merely alert border agents to the whereabouts of entering illegal immigrants whom they must passively watch.
"Merely alert border agents to the whereabouts of entering illegal immigrants?" Sound familiar? The National Guard will, at most, be performing Minutemen duties. But wait! I thought the Minutemen were "vigilantes", Mr. President.

A tiny concession to border security was passed (Sessions, R-AL, amendment #3979) which allows for the increase of fencing and vehicle barriers along 370 miles of the southwest border of the United States. Unfortunately, existing hardware - including rancher's broken cattle fences - would be counted towards this paltry total.

What's most appalling is that a Democrat tried to push through an amendment (Leahy, D-VT, amendment #4117) that would revise the existing ban on granting refugee status to aliens who have provided "material support" to a terrorist organization! Fortunately, the motion was killed, but the fact that it was even considered and proposed is deeply troubling! Who can take these guys seriously?


Ted Kennedy passed an amendment (#4066) that makes it unnecessary for any illegal alien to have an employer attest that they are employed when petitioning for permanent legal residence, and "self-employment" is sufficient. Plenty of room for fraud and corruption there!

Now here's where the whole argument for "cheap labor/doing jobs Americans won't do" flies out the window. Barak Obama (D-IL, amendment no. 3971) passed an amendment that extends the Davis-Bacon Act's "prevailing wage" levels to all temporary guest workers. That puts them ahead of American workers, who have this protection only on federal job sites:

So guest-workers (but not citizen workers) must be paid Davis-Bacon wage rates for jobs in the private sector if their occupation is covered by Davis-Bacon. Presumably because Senate Democrats' union bosses thought this provision too modest, an amendment by Senator Barack Obama, approved by voice vote, extended Davis-Bacon wages rates to all private work performed by guest workers, even if their occupations are not covered by Davis-Bacon.
There goes their precious "cheap labor" - this provision will effectively price many guest workers out of the market. "Guest workers" will have legal status and visas that entitle them to real wages, overtime, deductions like unemployment and social security, and workers’ rights that legal workers now enjoy. Illegals will still be cheaper. Thus, twenty million illegals will be amnestied right out of the job market. Then what do we do with them when millions of new illegals flood into the country to take their place?

Now enter the litigation factor: foreign guest farm workers, admitted under the bill, cannot be "terminated from employment by any employer . . . except for just cause." In contrast, American ag workers can be fired for any reason.


We've been assured time and again that newly amnestied "guest workers" will have to pay back taxes for the years that they lived here illegally - except that they really won't. A loophole in the new bill provides that only two years of back taxes will need to be filed. I don't know any American citizen that can just choose not to pay taxes for years! Additionally, the Senate has now provided for illegal aliens to apply for the Earned Income Tax Credit. Our government will end up paying them!


Senator Ensign (R-NV) tried to remove the provision allowing illegal immigrants who receive legal status under the legislation to receive retro-active credit for Social Security benefits for time that they worked before receiving legal status. Arlen Specter killed it. The bill allows illegal aliens to receive Social Security benefits for the years that they worked illegally, even if they paid into Social Security under a false number or using a stolen identity! As an American citizen, if I were caught stealing someone's identity or forging documentation to avoid paying taxes, I'd go to jail. Not so illegal aliens! There are NO penalties for breaking those laws - only retro-active rewards. The longer they broke the law, the bigger the pay-off.


Senator McConnell (R-KY) sought to add to the bill a requirement that all voters in federal elections be required to present a valid photo identification.

"It is nonsense to suggest that somehow a photo ID for one of our most sacred rights should not be protected by a requirement that is increasingly routine in almost all daily activities in America today," said the Kentucky lawmaker, second-ranking Republican.

But Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, D-Mass., likened the proposal to a poll tax or a requirement for voters to pass a literacy test. "Now is not the time and this is not the place to consider an amendment that may disenfranchise a million or more poor, minority, disabled, and elderly voters -- all of them American citizens," he said.
The proposal barely passed on a vote of 49-48, but unfortunately, it remains in limbo, evidently doomed by arcane rules now that the Senate has voted for cloture.

What the bill DOES provide for is a Bureau of the Census report to Congress on the impact of illegal immigration on the apportionment of Representatives in Congress. Of course, they need to count them - they are, after all, their newly bought electorate!


Here is a perfect of example of self-contradictory language within the bill itself. The bill supposedly protects American workers by ensuring that new immigrants will not take away jobs. However, the bill's own definition of "United States Worker" includes temporary foreign guest workers, so the protection is meaningless.

Senator Kyl (R-AZ, amendment #3969) attempted to ensure that temporary workers stayed temporary by removing the bill's provision allowing guest workers to apply for permanent residency. The Senator from his own state, McCain, killed the amendment.

Also, thanks to Senator Santorum (R-PA) the bill expands the visa waiver program (Immigration and Nationality Act, Sect 217) to numerous additional countries. At this point, why even bother with a visa? Waive it all!!


Senator Allard (R-CO), concerned by the incalculable administrative costs of implementing S. 2611, raised a point of order about the budget. Such a move is allowed under the Budget Act when the projected cost of legislation under consideration exceeds a certain level. If the point of order is upheld, the legislation cannot proceed. The Senate irresponsibly waived the protective rules under the Budget Act, rejecting the point of order 67-31. Apparently, no cost is too great.


Bush's former chief economic adviser Lawrence Lindsey blows the whistle on the "end of the line" fiction being used to sell the Bush/Senate immigration reform:

At present, there are hundreds of thousands of people around the world who are waiting to immigrate legally to America. They have already waited in line to get their first appointment, then to submit the paperwork, then been called back to answer more questions. And still, they wait. In places like Hong Kong, the waiting time may be as long as 15 years. Most of these people have relatives--cousins or grandchildren, for example--who live and work and pay taxes in America and even have become American citizens.

While the process isn't pretty, there is no good alternative. Permission to reside in America is very valuable....

Comprehensive immigration reform promises that people already in the United States illegally can apply for citizenship, but requires them to "go to the back of the line." But a key question is, the back of which line? The reform bill before the Senate doesn't require illegal immigrants to go back home--to, say, Hong Kong, to the end of the 10-to-15-year line there--to get a green card. Instead, it allows the current illegals to receive their green card immediately--having, in effect, jumped the line at the U.S. consulate abroad. Then, like other green card holders, they will be able to work here, collect government benefits like food stamps and Medicaid, and travel as freely as if they had a U.S. passport.

The line the current illegals will go to the back of is the citizenship line. Under the proposed law, current illegals, newly minted green card in hand, will have to wait six years, then get in line to apply for citizenship. But even after six years, they will be years ahead of many people who have gone through the legal process and are waiting overseas for a consular official to let them come here. Once those who have been playing by the rules all along get here, they too have to wait six years before getting in line for citizenship.

If we really mean "the back of the line," that should be behind everyone who is already in the pipeline to come here legally.
Let's be real: this bill allows those who come here illegally to gain a huge advantage over those who follow the rules. This, in effect, creates an irresistible incentive for others to ignore the rules and come here illegally. Fast track it by going illegal - there's no reason not to!


Lindsey has further concerns about the utter non-viability of the Senate's bill:

In 2004, the INS issued 946,000 green cards and naturalized 537,000 people. The proposed immigration reform anticipates giving green cards to up to 11 million people [likely closer to 20 million] in one fell swoop and making them eligible for citizenship six years later. It is inconceivable that the INS could handle an eleven-fold increase in its workload. Do we really intend to pass a bill that purports to document these 11 million people without setting up a system capable of providing them the promised documentation? If we don't, everyone else who is already here legally but needs a visa update, or has adopted a foreign-born child, or wants his aging mother to join him in America, will get swamped by the tsunami of newly legalized people seeking documentation.
VDare concurs and says that the guest worker program is an administrative catastrophe in the making: "Already, there are backlogs of millions of applications with CIS [Citizenship and Immigration Services] for the various immigration benefits. If any guest worker program or amnesty is enacted, the sheer amount of work in processing, receiving and vetting applications and the assorted work that goes with them (interviewing, fraud investigations, verifying documentation) will without a doubt delay any application already pending—even if additional staff are added. This includes, of course, those innocents who bothered to apply to enter the U.S. the right way." No wonder, legal immigrants are so upset with this whole thing!

I do not understand how the Senate has been so willfully blind to the will of the people and so determined to ignore the future costs of their folly:

The approved bill would send the U.S. population skyrocketing towards a billion people by the close of the century -- with no analysis done of the impacts of this mass population explosion on housing, congestion, overcrowding, education, the environment and the overall quality of life. Local communities have not been consulted, and virtually no preparation has been undertaken to provide for the enormous burdens this legislation would entail. It reflects the degree to which the Senate is completely out of touch with the average American.

Nor does the bill take any serious steps that would improve immigration enforcement -- especially in the interior. It merely continues a cycle of rewarding lawbreakers and clothing a loss of border control with the patina of legality. Rather than face the reality of today's immigration crisis, the Senate has enacted a terrible bill that once again puts the interests of the American people last. The bill's cost is staggering, the administrative burdens crushing and the consequences for the cohesion of the future American nation -- no longer bound by a common destiny of the rule of law -- are severe.

This has been a production of the Guard the Borders Blogburst. It was started by Euphoric Reality, and serves to keep immigration issues in the forefront of our minds as we’re going about our daily lives and continuing to fight the war on terror. If you are concerned with the trend of illegal immigration facing our country, join our Blogburst! Just send an email with your blog name and url to euphoricrealitynet at gmail dot com.


Monday, May 29, 2006

In Memory

"Here Rests In Honored Glory An American Soldier Known But To God"

LATER: Norma's collecting memories.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Do you know where your child is?

Good for you ‘cause I certainly don't most of the time. I mean, I have a general idea sometimes but that's about it.

Da Kid's on duty one day and off the next two unless he's doing a time swap with another firefighter or working overtime either at his station or another one. Then there's his Firefighter II class and I can't keep up with when classes are scheduled, either. And don't forget that he's also volunteering with another fire department, too.

Let me use last week as an example.

Da Kid moved out left for work Monday morning and wouldn't be back until some time Friday. He was on duty that day but since he had school in the afternoon and evening was doing a half-day time swap with another firefighter. Tuesday morning he was swapping time with the same firefighter so that HE could go to school and then that afternoon, Da Kid was doing stuff with the VFD. After that he was heading back to the station because there was no point in coming home since he was working an overtime shift (At one of the stations or maybe it was his own, I dunno!) Wednesday and then, he was on duty Thursday . . . except he had school that afternoon and evening so he was again doing a half-day time swap (involving part of Friday) with another firefighter.

See what I mean?

So, Da Kid arrived home mid-morning Friday, a lot earlier than I'd expected. Right away I'm worried, "Is everything okay?"

Yep. He didn't have to do the Thursday / Friday half-day time swap ‘cause he skipped going to class on Thursday. There was no need for him to go, he'd decided. The entire class was going to be on the different forms and reports he's already filling out, every time he went to work.

The others taking Firefighter II apparently don't have any actual experience outside of the classroom. They were shocked, Da Kid said, to find out being a firefighter also involves doing paperwork. Lots of paperwork. Tons of it.

"I guess they think it's nothing but excitement, running from fire to fire all the time. I told ‘em every time a truck leaves the station, there's at least one or two hours of paperwork waiting for them when they get back."

Considering how much "blue" Da Kid has in his genes from both Hubby's side and mine, maybe he was born to be a firefighter. In any case Da Kid's loving what he's doing.

The best part he said deadpan — the dimples in his cheeks giving him away as they always do when he's faking being completely serious — is driving 80 m.p.h. and running red lights while he's driving a monster-sized truck . . . as people pull over to get the hell out of his way.

I have every confidence he was joking.

I hope.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

"Mr. Kerry says . . ."

. . . among other things that he's still carrying "The Hat" around with him.

The occasion was an interview with Kate Zernike of the New York Times. The purpose of the article was to remind people that John Kerry (who if you didn't know served in Vietnam) is a war hero who'd been done wrong by those lying, dirty-dog Republican hacks, the Swift Boat Vets.

Kerry's "fighting back hard" against their unfounded accusations and distortions that caused him so much . . . whut.ever:

"They lied and lied and lied about everything," Mr. Kerry says in an interview in his Senate office. "How many lies do you get to tell before someone calls you a liar? How many times can you be exposed in America today?"
But . . .
Mr. Kerry portrays himself as a wary participant in his own defense, insisting in the two-hour interview that he does not want to dwell on the accusations or the mistakes of his 2004 campaign. "I'm moving on," he says several times.
It's pretty obvious that Kerry is planning a run to secure the Democrat's 2008 nomination for President. In order to succeed he has to rehabilitate his image as a lying skunk. To do that he must accomplish two things:

First, Kerry has to fully discredit by whatever means necessary, The Swift Boat Vets and anyone and everyone connected with them. Second, Kerry has provide proof of the claims he made about his military service to refute the specific charges made by The Swift Boat Vets.

The easiest and only way for Kerry to do that would be for him to release to the public his full military record, which is obviously something he can't afford to do.

Despite the rhetoric, the only thing Kerry has ever promised to do was sign the Form F-180 that releases the information in his file. He's never said he would release it for public scrutiny.

When Kerry finally did sign the form after the election, he authorized the release of his full and complete record . . . to Douglas Brinkley (Kerry's biographer) at the Boston Globe and the Los Angeles Times ONLY. Neither would share any of the information contained in the document release claiming privileged communication.

Kerry is now, however, allowing friends and supporters to gather on his behalf "new evidence" (like the photograph above) that will verify absolutely what he said before about his military record was the unvarnished truth, validated just as before by only, "Mr. Kerry says . . . "

LATER: Wizbang's Lorie Byrd also noticed The Return Of The Magic Hat.

LATER-LATER: Florida Cracker links in Florida Barbie Presents.

Friday, May 26, 2006

It's time to . . .

The Senate yesterday easily approved an immigration bill that allows 10 million illegal aliens to become citizens, doubles the flow of legal immigration each year and will cost U.S. taxpayers an estimated $54 billion over the next 10 years.

The leaders of both parties hailed the 62-36 passage as a historic success.

Majority Leader Bill Frist said the vote represented the "very best" of the Senate.

It's time to repeal the Seventeenth Amendment that allows for the direct election of dumbasses senators, and return to what the Founding Fathers designed: the appointment of senators by each state's legislature.

In the moments before the vote, Mr. Frist and about a dozen senators, from both parties, tearfully congratulated one another for all their hard work in producing the legislation. Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, Massachusetts Democrat and the leading proponent of the bill, called it "the most far-reaching immigration reform in our history."

After the vote, more than a dozen giddy lawmakers from both sides of the aisle gathered before television cameras to again commend one another.

"I am so proud of the Senate," Minority Leader Harry Reid said as those around him smiled broadly. "This is the way we should legislate -- on a bipartisan basis."

It's time to repeal the Seventeenth Amendment that allows for the direct election of dumbasses senators, and return to what the Founding Fathers designed: the appointment of senators by each state's legislature.

As he spoke, a television screen behind him showed a live picture of the Senate floor, where fellow Democrats were at that moment trying to mount a filibuster against President Bush's latest judicial nominee.

Have I mentioned that it's time to repeal the Seventeenth Amendment that allows for the direct election of dumbasses senators, and return to what the Founding Fathers designed: the appointment of senators by each state's legislature?

(Quoted material from the Washington Times.)

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Debunking Myths

Have any of you seen this picture before? Anything like it, perhaps, as it relates to Hurricane Katrina?

Here's the caption: A U.S. Army UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter flight engineer unloads food and water at the Louisiana Super Dome in New Orleans on Sept. 3, 2005. The Super Dome is being used as a central staging and relocation center for thousands of displaced New Orleans residents affected by the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. DoD photo.

When it comes to MREs I'm no expert, but dang! The top case in front don't look like MREs to me. It looks like industrial-sized cans of Campbell's Soup . . . and here's a few other photographs from the Department of Defense you probably haven't seen, either.

Like many (most?) who listened and saw the media's reports from New Orleans in Katrina's wake, the horror stories they provided kept us glued to the coverage as our stomachs turned. Each story about the carnage and brutality throughout New Orleans cemented our belief that abandoned, the people there had turned to lawless savagery. The strong preying upon the weak.

Which raised the spectre, naturally, that if faced with a similiar catastrophe would we, too, find ourselves in the same situation.

We know now that the murders and rapes reported by the media, primarily at the Superdome, never occurred. Still, we're left with the memory of tens of thousands of people trapped -- abandoned and alone -- without food or water until days later when the military finally arrived to provide relief.

Except . . .

The cavalry wasn't late. It didn't arrive on Thursday smoking a cigar and cussing. It was there all along.
The main command center for Louisiana's National Guard had been set up in the Superdome.

Many survivors in the Dome complained of food and water shortages, a charge that reverberated through the media echo chamber.. . . [T]he Guard stuck to strict rationing - one MRE and one liter of water per day, exactly what troops got in combat in Iraq. Because so many victims were being brought in so quickly in an open-ended rescue operation, the Guard wasn't taking any chances of running out of supplies by opening an all-you-can eat buffet. It started out with a 3-day supply for ten thousand people, and ultimately brought in 300,000 MREs and 397,000 liter bottles of water, a 30-day supply for 10,000 people.
NOLA's cops and firefighters all abandoning their posts? Looks like that's another tall tale.

At Real Clear Politics, Lou Dolinar -- who originally thought some of what he was being told was a hoax -- looks at Katrina: What the Media Ignored Missed.

It's long, but it's well worth it.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Are you ready?

This year's hurricane season starts June 1. Are you ready?

I'm not. Then again I never feel like I am, but I scratched a big-ticket item off the list Sunday.

Hoping Floridians will make the effort to be prepared and prepared early, the state declared a sales tax holiday on certain items from May 21 through June 1. To make matters even better, Home Depot is matching whatever Florida's sales tax would have been, with a reduction on the item's price.

Since Da Kid was off as was Herself, we three went to breakfast, saw The Da Vinci Code, then went to Barnes & Noble followed by a trip to Target, and finished our day at Home Depot — where I bought a new generator.

"Gramps," the old generator, is in the shop and we don't know yet what's wrong with it. It could be something minor and inexpensive and we become a two-generator family, OR because of its age Gramps might not be worth fixing.

The Home Depot folk were helpful and had all kinds of handouts available explaining what items are included in the state's hurricane-preparation tax holiday, and for comparison purposes a separate one with each and every generator on a spreadsheet for easy comparison.

I left with a Briggs & Stratton something-or-other model with this, that and the other that Da Kid agreed is good, and powerful enough so that if we ARE faced with a power outage for an extended period of time (which I know we won't be now that I've bought a new generator) we can keep the water pump atop the well, the refrigerator, the big freezer in the garage, and a small window A/C unit all going if we have to. (And possibly the hot water heater and / or the stove if we're careful to make sure everything's not all going at the same time.)

Not that I know how to even RUN a generator, but Da Kid said it was really simple and it is. And this one's on wheels for easy portability and has a detachable handle, which means even I could move it out of the garage and set it up if the need arises, which I know won't now that I bought the new generator.

In any case, here it's on to additional hurricane preparation: socking in additional canned goods, new shelving in the garage (Dang! That didn't fly.) and such.

Hopefully again this year after I've made every preparation here I can think of, all of Northeast Florida will once again be spared the worst.

Knock on wood.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Guard the Borders Blogburst

by Heidi at Euphoric Reality

Our Open Borders Will Be The Death Of Us Yet

I live in Texas, and sometimes I think people don't truly grasp the fact that the chaos on our borders is not a border state issue - it threatens them directly, no matter where they live. The fact is that our border chaos is directly linked to our national security. Terrorists already have and continue to illegally cross our border, blending in with illegals from Mexico and Central America, or brazenly crossing over with an armed escort of gang members or even the Mexican military.

Watch this video of an ongoing investigation done by the news team from KGRV TV serving Harlingen-Weslaco-McAllen -Brownsville, Texas. (Video will open in your media player - it's a news segment.) It is part of an ongoing series highlighting the culmination of months of investigative research into the flow of terrorists over our borders. Fred Burton, a counter-terrorism expert of Stratfor, was interviewed on camera. He stated that now is the perfect time for terrorists to sneak across the border. Escalating violence and an unprecedented flood of illegals is distracting law enforcement and stretching it thin. Zapata County sheriff, Frederigo Gonzales Jr. says that as for WMDs, it is not a matter of "if", but "when".

About one in every 10 caught border jumpers is an Arab. I don't think I need to point out that if they are sneaking into the country illegally, they fit the profile and are probably terrorists. Unfortunately, we only catch about 25-33% of the flood of illegals, and estimates are that we absorb 3 million illegals (Time Magazine, September 2004 and Bear Stearns July 2005) that do make it through each year. That could mean that about 10% of the illegals that DO make it across are possible terrorists. Do the math: that's potentially 300,000 terrorists making it into our country free and clear. Let's get really skeptical and downgrade that so we feel better about it - let's say only 1% of those that make it through are possible terrorists. That is only 30,000 - per YEAR. Is that OK? Considering it took 18 terrorists to wreak the terror of 9/11, is 300,000 or even 30,000 terrorists OK with you?

If that's a reasonable risk for you, then consider the percentage of potential terrorists that have already crossed the border and are living among us - sleeper cells in our own neighborhoods. The low estimate of illegals inside our border is 20 million, the high is 29 million. What's 10% of that figure? Is a few million potential terrorists a reasonable risk?

For some strange reason, the smaller number of 30,000 is almost scarier to me. Maybe it's just easier to grasp a few thousand insane killers bent on our destruction, instead of an army of millions. Maybe it's because we can do still something about thousands - IF we act swiftly and ruthlessly - but a few million is an almost insurmountable...and it's possibly far too late. Fred Burton agrees with that assessment – he said the numbers of terrorists that have been caught is nothing compared to those that have made it through – those numbers are huge.

If you are an open borders type and think it's wrong to build any barrier along the border, or in any way militarize our border; or if you think illegal immigration is just about nice, poor people who want jobs, you need a wake-up call. Let's look at some of the issues raised by the investigation in the video above as well as some others I've written about in the past year.

1. Several months ago, according to KGRV TV, two IEDs and components for 33 more were discovered in Laredo. It won't be long before we face here in America, what our brave soldiers face every day in Iraq. And IEDs may be the least worrisome. If it's a simple matter to smuggle 3,000 pounds of drugs across the border, as the sheriff mentioned, how much easier is it to carry across a suitcase bomb - a dirty nuke?

“Several al-Qaeda leaders believe operatives can pay their way into the country through Mexico and also believe illegal entry is more advantageous than legal entry for operational security reasons,” Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security Admiral James Loy testified on February 16 before the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence. “At home, we must prepare ourselves for any attack, from IEDs (improvised explosive devices) to Weapons of Mass Destruction…from soft targets like malls to national icons.”
2. A terrorist jacket, with patches depicting an Arab military and 9/11, was found in Hebbronville, TX. Finding terrorist garb is nothing new. In 2005:

Ms. Garner, who grew up here in Naco, population 7,000 says..."It is more dangerous and pernicious, with a growing number of people of different nationalities coming across the border, including from the Middle East, India, and Afghanistan."

The evidence of that comes in Islamic prayer rugs found in the desert dust, Arabic literature left by still-warm campfires, and Afghani head garb caught on cactus quills. The FBI also recently found a drug tunnel beneath the bedroom of a schoolmate of one of the Garner girls, with $250,000 cash hidden inside.
3. In November 2005, a confirmed al Qaeda operative was arrested near the Mexican border and turned over to the FBI. He had been living in Mexico for six months and making notes of the movement of people and police officers

4. Also in November of last year, A congresswoman from NC went on the record as noting that three al Qaeda operatives were being held in a jail in Texas, after being apprehended on the U.S.-Mexican border.

5. In 2005, in southern Texas alone, 51 suspected terrorists were captured while crossing the border [from the KGRV news report]. They came from countries such as Iran, Egypt, Syria, Iraq, and Pakistan, and were arrested on various charges of gun smuggling and illegally wiring large sums of money. We do not know where they are today. That's a problem.

6. In 2005, 10 Egyptians were arrested in Douglas, Arizona.

7. In 2004, a high-level al Qaeda operative (comparable to Khalid Sheik Mohammed, the mastermind of 9/11) was arrested in McAllen, Texas attempting to make her way to New York after illegally crossing the border by swimming the Rio Grande. Though she was on a terrorist watch list, she had illegally entered into America at least 250 times before being caught!!!

8. In September of 2004, Action 4 News in Harlingen, Texas, learned that Al Qaeda cells - each group having from seven to fifteen suspected terrorist members were found just across the Rio Grande Valley in Mexico.

"We know from intelligence reports that there are middle easterners that are making their way in our direction," said U.S. Congressman Jim Turner during a news conference at the Veterans Memorial International Bridge in Brownsville.

"We don't know their purpose, but we do know that they are there and those reports are coming in increasing numbers. So it should be a wake-up call."

9. In July of 2004, Adnan El-Shukrijumah, a high-ranking Al-Qaeda leader and one of the most wanted terrorists in the world, was spotted in Honduras meeting with members of the MS-13 gang. By August, he had may his way north and was spotted in north Mexico.

By the way, if you need proof that al Qaeda is working hand-in-glove with Latino gangs, go here - there's plenty of reading.

10. In October of 2004, an intelligence report supplied to the Department of Homeland Security by Russian security services said that a group of 25 backpack-carrying Chechen terrorists - all white - illegally entered Arizona by way of Mexico last summer.

11. In September 2001, 10 Yemenis were arrested by Mexican police before trying to cross from Agua Prieta into Douglas, Arizona. They were released and they returned to Agua Prieta to try again, where they were joined by several other unidentified Arabs.

12. In November 1998, over 100 Iranians were apprehended in Arizona because of a tip called in by a border rancher.

Those are just a few examples. Our border security is non-existent, and our enemies are well aware of that fact.

While entry into the U.S. is their primary goal in establishing a base in Latin America, Islamist terrorists -- well-aware of the allure Marxism once held for many south of the border -- also see the region as a potential breeding ground for Islamic converts due to its poor economic and social conditions and corrupt governments.

For instance, the Shia terrorist group Hezbollah wields a strong presence in the tri-border region, a lawless, crime-ridden area where Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay intersect. Both Osama bin Laden and 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed are also said to have spent time there, during the 1990's.

It was Mohammed who in 2002 encouraged alleged dirty bomber Jose Padilla to 'enter the United States by way of Mexico' in order to carry out attacks on U.S. targets, according to Deputy Attorney General James Comey.

Ironically, before converting to Islam and volunteering his services to Al-Qaeda, Padilla belonged to the Chicago chapter of the Latin Kings -- like MS-13, a violent Hispanic criminal gang.

Although U.S. agents were able to collar Padilla before he could carry out a terrorist attack, the U.S. border strategy, as presently construed, may one day soon yield a much less savory result.
Hm, do you think so???

Nevertheless, as stated in the KGRV news report, our government does not want us to know of the terror threat flowing over our border Homeland Security refused to respond to KGRV's requests for an interview on the subject. And the government is doing everything they can to shut down the citizens who were once the greatest intelligence asset to to the Border Patrol in stopping terrorists crossing the border: American ranchers living along the border.

Perhaps the most valuable asset that the Border Patrol has is the aid of rural Cochise County (AZ) citizens. Many have attempted to help, in accordance with Arizona law. Through that legal process, landowners may execute a citizen’s arrest for individuals or groups trespassing on their property. However, even that has been nullified.
Rural citizens here have met with savage recriminations for exerting their legal rights. Immigration advocacy groups howl in protest, as does the Mexican government. Their lawyers have demanded that the ranchers be prosecuted for false arrest, kidnapping, intimidation, criminal assault and violation of civil rights...Illegal immigrants have now sued some Cochise County citizens in American courts.
Ben Anderson, a retired U.S. Army colonel who lives in Sierra Vista, Ariz., has made a detailed study of the border danger since the flood of illegals began through Cochise County in 1997.

“There is only one way to handle this,” the colonel says firmly. “In a world now filled with biowarfare agents, backpack nuclear devices and chemical weapons like Sarin gas, we must militarize the border. There is no other way to stop the flow.”
Congressman John Culberson (R-TX) concurs:

FBI Director Robert Mueller had previously "confirmed" in testimony before [a Congressional] committee "that there are individuals from countries with known al-Qaeda connections who are changing their Islamic surnames to Hispanic-sounding names and obtaining false Hispanic identities, learning to speak Spanish and pretending to be Hispanic immigrants."

"And these are clearly Arab terrorists," Rep. Culberson added, "from countries like Yemen, Iraq and Saudi Arabia. They're crossing the border, pretending to be Hispanic immigrants, and then disappearing."

Rep. Culberson said news of al-Qaeda’s penetration of the U.S.'s southern border has him worried that the next terrorist plot could involve setting off simultaneous truck bombs in major urban centers.

"The day they blow us up," he predicted, "the border will be sealed tighter than the Berlin Wall and you'll have armed United States military forces" enforcing immigration laws.
That will be too late.


This has been a production of the Guard the Borders Blogburst. It was started by Euphoric Reality, and serves to keep immigration issues in the forefront of our minds as we’re going about our daily lives and continuing to fight the war on terror. If you are concerned with the trend of illegal immigration facing our country, join our Blogburst! Just send an email with your blog name and url to euphoricrealitynet at gmail dot com.


Saturday, May 20, 2006

I'm calling "Bull Shit!" ...

. . . on the entire amnesty for illegal aliens immigration reform bill the Senate's debating. All of it.

So there I was ranting and raving (politely, of course) about the Senate's decision to legalize identity theft by illegal aliens, but something kept bugging me.

You know the way it is I'm sure. There's something. You know it and it's floating around in your mind but when you try to grab it, it just keeps slipping away. The harder you try, the faster it slithers behind something else, while ducking out periodically going, Neener! Can't catch me!

Was it that if amnesty is given to the current batch of illegal aliens who've stolen the Social Security numbers of American citizens and screwed up those peoples' lives, that the precedence will be set allowing all future illegal aliens to legally do the same thing? That it will make the problem even worse?

Nah, that's a given.

The talking heads and pundits have been split.

On one side those like me argue it's insane to reward those who've repeatedly broken the law, and illegal aliens who boosted the the Social Security numbers of others paid into the system with absolutely no expectation of return.

The other side says it doesn't matter whether the illegals broke any laws. They paid into Social Security and that's all that matters. It is, after all, money they earned and not giving back to them what they paid in would be just be so unfair.

(One person repeated, "It's not fair!" at least five times in a less than two-minute interview. In fact, that's pretty much all she said.)

The talking heads and pundits were still yammering away this morning, and for the umpteenth time I heard just how unfair it would if illegal aliens who've worked and paid into the Social Security system couldn't . . .

And there it was, what I knew all along and know all too well:
[W]hen I went to my pre-retirement seminar years ago . . . I discovered no matter how much I'd already paid into Social Security or paid into it in the future, the Windfall Elimination Provision meant the government doesn't have to return to me a stinkin' dime I paid into Social Security or in the future ever will. And under the Government Pension Offset, my local government pension [also] eliminates Hubby's Social Security no matter how much he paid into it in the past or might in the future. -- Doyle (11-07-04) (Please see that post for links to the specific legislation underlined.)
Well, dang.

It's fair to deny US citizens any benefit from a system they've legally paid in to, BUT it would be unfair to illegal aliens who've paid into the same system but by fraudulent means if they can't.

Gag me.

LATER: Norma notes the irony -- and what would be poetic justice -- in her closing paragraph.

LATER-LATER: Bill Quick bellows, "That's Outrageous!"


Thursday, May 18, 2006

There's only one rational answer: They're insane.

I watched the debates on C-Span this afternoon, concerning one of the amendments proposed to the amnesty for illegal aliens immigration reform legislation before the Senate.

The purpose of the amendment is quite simple and straight forward:

To reduce document fraud, prevent identity theft, and preserve the integrity of the Social Security system, by ensuring that persons who receive an adjustment of status under this bill are not able to receive Social Security benefits as a result of unlawful activity.
In other words, IF an illegal alien has been working and part of their pay went into Social Security because they'd ripped off someone's Social Security number (which, by the way, is a felony), IF they become "regularized" they can't, then, go back and then make a claim and be rewarded for their illegal actions.

When an illegal alien becomes "regularized" (the Senators debating used that word a lot) and start paying into Social Security under their own identity, fine and dandy. No problem. That's when their Social Security record starts.

Makes sense, doesn't it?

Aside from identity theft being illegal, it may have caused or will cause a problem for the U.S. citizen who . . .

  1. Has been a stay-at-home mom since 2000 who got a bill from IRS for back taxes on $1 million on earned income in 2004, when 218 illegals used counterfeit Social Security cards with her number on it.

  2. Applies for Unemployment Compensation and is told they're not eligible because based on their Social Security number, they're still working . . . in lotsa different places.

  3. Gets turned down for a job because based on their Social Security number, they're already working for the company.

  4. Has their own, actual, official and real Social Security records deleted by the SSA because so many illegals have used that number, there's no way to sort anything out. So, the file is wiped clean, and now it's up to the U.S. citizen to come up with W-2s going back umpteen years IF they want to file a claim and expect an eligibility determination.
Those are a few of the actual examples given, but guess what?

By a 50 - 49 vote, our glorious United States Senate sided with the illegal aliens.


Wednesday, May 17, 2006

"Otherwise, it was an ordinary day with Zion."

Almost every day thirteen-year-old Chelsea Bennett tosses sticks into Colorado's Roaring Fork River for Zion, her family's two-year-old yellow Labrador retriever, to fetch.

Zion lost the stick in the river's cold, fast-moving water but brought back something else: eight-year-old Ryan Rambo.

The story is here.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Pull in the WELCOME mat

Dubya's going to be addressing the nation tonight on illegal immigration immigration reform. Sadly, I don't expect to hear much of anything new from him. He's still going to promote the guest worker program and unless something serious is done to secure our borders, if you think the volume of illegal aliens is bad now you ain't seen nothing yet.

Better border security will make it more difficult but even that's not going to solve the problem of illegal aliens coming in. Whether digging more tunnels under the border or being trucked in by coyotes, illegals will still find the lure of the United States even more tempting if all they have to do is get here. As soon as they do, all will be forgiven. Again.

This guest worker program that leads to citizenship? What's going to happen to the illegal aliens who aren't interested in becoming a US citizen. Are they going to be deported if they aren't? If they don't come forward to sign up for it and are caught? What about those who feign an interest with no intention of ever complying? Or are initially POSSIBLY interested and then change their minds.

I see the carrot but damned if I've yet to see any stick. That's because there isn't one.

We've got how many million illegals already here and even if we were able to track them all down, there's no way we're going to be able to deport them all. It's already impossible. When it comes to enforcement of our immigration laws, we're already in a downward spiral (flush your commode and watch the water) and it's only going to get worse unless a drastic step is taken.

The drastic step is to yank in the WELCOME mat. Via Boortz:

I've gone through this on the air and in the Nuze before, but just in case the president's speech writers wanted to take a look at my notes before they polished up Bush's remarks, (yeah ... right) ... here's just how to reverse the flow:

1. Harsh .. to the draconian level .. penalties against any employer who knowing hires any workers who are not in this country legally.

2. Punishment - though milder - of any employers who hire illegals because they didn't conduct due diligence in the hiring process.

3. Change the law to deny citizenship to children born to a woman who is in this country illegally.

4. No children of illegals in American government schools.

5. Deny all social welfare benefits to anyone who is in this country illegally with the one exception of life-saving medical care.

6. Confiscate a substantial portion of the monies earned in this country by illegal immigrants. We confiscate drug money because it was earned illegally, so why can't we confiscate the money earned by illegals? I'm not saying take it all. Leave them enough to buy some food and get a bus ticket to Matamoras.
Allow me to clarify Boort'z sixth item a bit since as the material I quoted says, he's talked about his proposals and included them in his Nuze several times.

Illegals in the United States from Mexico, as one example, have an established system that allows them to transmit back to to their families there an estimated $18 to $20 billion each year. Tax the living hell out of each transaction, with the funds strictly designated toward increasing and maintaining border security.

Put it all together and illegal aliens already here will find their way back out just as they found their way in. With concrete border security and with the elimination of the "carrots" luring them here, the number of illegal aliens will drop.


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Guard the Borders Blogburst

Reformation or Revolution?

by Heidi and Kit at Euphoric Reality

Tonight, the President will address the nation on his plans for illegal immigration. Unfortunately, he's already given his word to Vicente Fox on Sunday that his plan to put a few National Guard troops on the border is just a temporary formality, of sorts, and not meant to intimidate anyone. Right. Heaven forbid we intimidate anyone to deter them from breaking our laws!

The question then arises, who does Bush feel more compelled to explain himself to - us Americans or the Mexicans? He owes the American people everything , and the Mexican government nothing! So why is he assuring Fox of anything concerning our internal national policies?!

I have no illusions about what we'll hear from President Bush tonight. But before he tries to lull anyone into complacency tonight, let's look at the reality of the Goode Amendment, which Bush will no doubt reference in his speech tonight. Troops on the border to bolster security? It's not what it sounds like:

OK, here are the dirty little secrets.

“(d) Conditions of Use- (1) Whenever a member who is assigned under subsection (a) to assist the Bureau of Border Security or the United States Customs Service is performing duties at a border location pursuant to the assignment, a civilian law enforcement officer from the agency concerned shall accompany the member.”

So, each military member will simply now be a buddy for a Border Patrol guy.

Now look at this;

“(2) Nothing in this section shall be construed to–

(A) authorize a member assigned under subsection (a) to conduct a search, seizure, or other similar law enforcement activity or to make an arrest;”

So, the military has nada authority.

BUT it gets better;

“(h) Termination of Authority- No assignment may be made or continued under subsection (a) after September 30, 2007.’”

This is a ONE YEAR DEAL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Bush's speech tonight seems to be a weak bid to stem the hemorrhage of voters from the Republican Party. As the party's leader, Bush has a responsibility to lead and direct his party, and he may just be leading it to a crushing defeat in the upcoming elections. People who voted for Bush not once, but twice, are abandoning the Republican Party in droves. On a recent news radio poll, 80% of the callers who had voted for Bush twice, now heartily disapprove of him. Of that 80%, 90% of them said it was due to his mishandling of our border security. But Democrats shouldn’t celebrate any victories yet, because it’s not just Republicans - what it's doing to the two-party system is even worse.

This issue is splitting the American people into a majority who demand border security and immigration enforcement and a small, but vocal minority who demand amnesty. There are now two schools of thought coalescing around the faltering Republican Party and its bumbling missteps. The debate is happening now and we need to be a part of it. So let’s debate!

Kit and I dove into this a little deeper and have each represented a school of thought concerning the future of the Party, and by extension, our two party-system. In the interest of full disclosure, Kit is an increasingly-reluctant Republican and I am a furious Independent (formerly Republican who split from the party over a year ago).

The Reformer
by Kit Jarrell

Immigration is about as hot an issue as this country has seen in a while. Die-hard conservatives who once proudly pasted Bush/Cheney stickers on the backs of their cars are suddenly screaming for the President's head on a platter in the wake of his seemingly deliberate ignorance of the will of the American people, who in a new poll overwhelmingly call for border security and lower immigration numbers. A low rumbling has been heard in the blogosphere as some call for a conservative boycott of the 2006 elections in an effort to "show those GOP folks who's boss."

In the last few days, several conservative bloggers have stepped back a bit, asking if perhaps we're not being too hasty. Captain Ed says we're shooting ourselves in the foot if we simply sit home on Election Day.

...we still have to vote in November. If our preferred candidate does not win in the primaries, we still have to act responsibly and choose between the two major party candidates in the general election. Not only will abdication result in a loss of control over our own representation, the failure of GOP candidates has national implications that will wind up hamstringing the politicians that really have worked on our behalf -- the Tom Coburns, the John Boehners, the Jon Cornyns. And by sitting on our hands, we will have proven too inflexible to be dependable -- which will only encourage Republican candidates to reach out to the center-left more than ever before.
He's right. Here's how I see it:

The time for us to be acting is now, before the elections. We need to be seeking out and supporting candidates that we know will act with integrity and fortitude, who will understand and respect the rule of law, and who will do the job they were elected to do: represent the will of those who voted them in.

However, if Election Day rolls around and our candidate didn't make it, that is no excuse for us to sit home and do nothing. What happens if we throw a temper tantrum and refuse to vote? Democrats win. And let's face it: As much disillusion as we may feel right now, it's nothing compared to what this country will sink to if a liberal is elected back into the White House.

Stop the ACLU agrees, and quotes the Anchoress:

I just have to ask all of you people - on every side - who have decided that immigration is one man’s burden, and that every good thing President Bush has done is to be negated because he hasn’t snapped his fingers and done what YOU think is the solution to the immigration problem…what did Clinton do about immigration, what did Bush 41 do? What did St. Reagan do? What did Carter do? What has any president, congressperson or senator done about immigration for the last 30 years, except kick the issue down the road for someone else to deal with?
As hard as it may be to hear, she's got a point. The responsibility for the scope and breadth of the current immigration problem lies on all of our shoulders. Illegals didn't suddenly start showing up in the last year. Politicians have been ignoring the problem for decades...and so have we.

Anchoress goes on:

[On] immigration…one man is to blame, one man is at fault, one man must find the Solomonic solution. And if he doesn’t, he’s a bum no matter what else he’s done. Meanwhile, the press can’t get over the president who smiled and cried his way through two terms, and they still work on his legacy. Can you ever recall a time in history where 6 years after an administration ends, the ex-president is still breathlessly being polled-on, still being given (on most days) as much press as the current president? I can’t.
Is Bush wrong on this issue? Absolutely. Am I angry about it? You're damn right I am. But he's what we've got for another two years. I'm not asking everyone to go to Bush rallies and cheer. I am, however, telling you that being a conservative isn't like being a liberal. We don't get to take our toys and go home simply because someone's not playing fair. We don't get to scream for the nanny because we're not getting what we want. We're not part of that tribe. We don't get the luxury of tantrums and whining and petulance. Let's leave that for the cowards who'd rather hold up a sign than pay their dues as freemen.

As conservatives, we are the ones who see the big picture. We have to. Yes, immigration is one of the biggest issues facing this country. Yes, we need to act now. Yes, we need to hold our politicians accountable for their actions (or lack thereof). But sitting at home or boycotting the elections will only show everyone that we're just as spineless as the liberals we deride.

Liberals run when things don't work out. We don't. We stay until they're finished, until they're done, until the problem is taken care of. Don't throw up your hands yet. There's still work to be done.

The Revolutionary
By Heidi

I see the point made above. There is no doubt that we cannot sit back and do nothing. If we do - we deserve worse than we get. But can the Republican Party be reformed by simply finding new candidates? I know Democrats that are vastly disappointed with the direction of their party, too. Personally, I figure the system is broken. I think our Founding Fathers would be heartsick to see the extent of corruption within our two party system - it's like a grandiose house that has rotted from the foundation up. It would be best to tear it down and build something new and rock-solid on the foundation our forefathers built.

I am not prepared to give Bush a free pass by comparing him to our previous do-nothing Presidents. Never has there been a time in history when we have faced the sheer glut of problems rooted in the invasion of illegals - we're at 20 million or more - twice what the government will admit to. Never have we faced the crises of a foreign government managing our internal domestic policies, or our own government actively undermining our own laws, hamstringing our law enforcement, and refusing to listen to the majority of the American people. The American people have spoken - but nobody is listening!

Bush is the leader of the Republican Party. If he did the right thing, our majority-Republican Congress would follow. End of story - mission accomplished. Since he WON'T do the right thing, he puts those elected officials in the vulnerable and dangerous place of having to go against the entire executive branch in order to do what their people demand. As we've already seen, there's few of them that are man enough to do that. And that's what Bush is banking on! He's the one risking his own party, not those who abandon the Republican Party because it no longer speaks for them!

I think the Anchoress' defensive position is much more dangerous to the Republican Party than anything else: "How is one man supposed to do what countless others haven't?" That alone is a losing proposition! She asks what all the other presidents did about illegal immigration. Well, here are several extenuating points to ponder about that:

1) we've never had 20-28 MILLION illegals before
2) we never had a 9/11 before
3) we were not at war
4) those Presidents didn't promise the entire country that nothing mattered to them as much as our national security. Bush did.

The Republicans know that conservatives can't go anywhere else without risking the liberals taking control. I think Republicans count on the fact that conservatives are trapped, and they abuse it. Republicans caution rebellious conservatives by reminding them of how fourteen years ago, disaffected voters split the vote between Bush 41 and Perot. "Look what happened," they mourn, "we got eight years of Clinton." Republicans paint those independents as having sabotaged the election. Yet, what was the best candidate they could field against an incumbent Clinton in 1996? Bob Dole? C'mon - that's the best they could do? Losing two elections to the likes of Bubba Clinton is not the fault of the Independent voter - it's the result of a weak-willed Republican Party. They handed those elections to Clinton with a big red bow on top! That alone tells me they don't have what it takes to survive a reformation - they play it way too safe.

Today, we can't elect third-rate leaders just because we're voting against a floridly silly Al Gore or a treasonous John Kerry - who feels good about that?! Voting for the lesser of two evils, to vote against the worse candidate, is not the way any Republican or Democrat can hope to win an election. Neither party is any longer representing the American people, but rather big money interests and powerful small interest lobbies. Elections are a big money game. Though an Independent Perot couldn't win with his millions 14 years ago, he may have just been well ahead of his time. Here we are a decade and a half later, and millions of us are actively looking for a candidate with a spine of steel and an unswerving loyalty to the American people and the sovereignty of our homeland! I don't know about you, but I'm ready! There needs to be a radical overthrow of the rotten parties currently in control.

There's a confluence of circumstances that may make possible today what was impossible 14 years ago - field a powerful Independent that truly represents the American people. I've heard people caution that we can't afford to be single-issue voters. I beg to differ - when it comes to our national sovereignty, nothing is more important. Illegal immigration and Mexico's meddling in our domestic affairs are the greatest threat to our national sovereignty that our generation has ever seen. Neither the Republicans nor the Democrats can handle the gravity of the problem - they've already proven that to their everlasting shame.

It's time to throw them all out - the spirit of the American Revolution burns deeps inside many of us. It's time to ignite that fire and accomplish what lesser men and women have deemed impossible.

This has been a production of the Guard the Borders Blogburst. It is syndicated by Euphoric Reality, and serves to keep immigration issues in the forefront of our minds as we're going about our daily lives and continuing to fight the war on terror. If you are concerned with the trend of illegal immigration in our country, join the Blogburst! Send an email with your blog name and url to euphoricrealitynet at gmail dot com.


Sunday, May 14, 2006


Oops. My apologies. How unladylike, especially on a day like Mothers Day.

Herself's family had their almost-annual Death-by-Food gathering but instead of the usual small, intimate crowd of 100 plus, this one was scaled back to a quiet afternoon of maybe 20.

Instead of the normal ton and a half of pork ribs, an untold number of chickens sacrificed their lives legs and thighs for "The Mayor's ," Herself's father's, barbeque magic.

The Mayor himself built the smoker / grill he uses, starting with the shell of an old hot water heater he salvaged from someone's house when he was putting in a new one. When this one eventually gives out, he'll do the same thing he did when the last one did. Build another one just like it.

Whether beef, pork or chicken (or gator) The Mayor only cooks with oak. Real oak. I don't know if he goes out into the woods to gather it himself anymore, though. He's got two big strappin' grandsons to do it for him.

Potato salad, cole slaw, baked beans, cucumber salad, rolls and dessert (Dump Cake and / or Strawberry Shortcake.)

The mass feeding frenzy finished up shortly before one o'clock. For the rest of the afternoon when not doing something else, people went back periodically to grab another plate of whut.ever.

The grandsons occasionally went out toward the marsh to see if fish might be biting or shrimp running. Son-in-law, who's leaving for downstate in the early ayem, put a cart together for Herself's mother.

Then they'd head back in and grab another plate of food, after which they'd return to what apparently turned out to be this afternoon's major entertainment: Da Kid and others trying to teach me Texas Hold ‘em.

I know how to play Poker. Kinda. I mean, I know what beats what but when it comes to actually playing I stink. Bad. Worse than bad.

Worster bad. (Worstest Bad will always belong to the Legend of Hubby's mother folding with two pair, of sevens.)

But I did pretty good today if I do say so myself. I actually won several hands, a couple of big pots, too, because since I don't know what the hell I'm doing, no one else knew what the hell I was doing either.

I had a good poker face, too, or that's what I was told. My facial expressions are totally inscrutable; however, it appears I need to work on body english.

Seems everybody at the table figured out I probably had a straight that hand because while looking at cards I had and those on on the table, I indicated repeatedly with my fingers I was counting from one to five.


A great afternoon in a quite setting, my tummy filled repeatedly far beyond its normal capacity . . . I hope everyone's Mothers Day was as good as mine.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

A chilling threat

Charles at Eye of the Storm links to an article from the Tallahassee Democrat reporting that with hurricane season again approaching, this year some residents may have to pay for ice after a storm.

[Chuck Hagan, the logistics chief for Florida's Division of Emergency Management] hopes to avoid the scenes like those last year after Hurricane Wilma in Broward and Palm Beach counties, where he said residents lined up for free ice in the parking lots of open stores.
And a lot more as I observed here.

My absolute favorite, bar none, was the woman who poked her head out of the window of her big-assed SUV, to explain why in her opinion FEMA stinks.

If they'd been prepared the way they should have been, she said, she wouldn't have to wait for her free generator. And gasoline.

Jeb's once again calling "on residents to stash enough food and water for the first 72 hours on their own, 'so we can focus our resources on a large group of people who can't.'"

Lotta good that'll do especially after Jeb's response to the hyped media complaints that FEMA hadn't responded fast enough last year, when he explained it was Florida that hadn't.

And now he's trying to warn the same people that this time, they may have to take personal responsibility for the provision of their own ice?

That's cold.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Persnickety Phraseology

Adminisphere: The rarefied organizational layers beginning just above the rank and file. Decisions that fall from the adminisphere are often profoundly inappropriate or irrelevant to the problems they were designed to solve.

Adult: A person who has stopped growing at both ends and is now growing in the middle.

Arachnoleptic fit: The frantic dance performed just after you've accidentally walked through a spider web.

Arbitrator: A cook that leaves Arby's to work at McDonald's.

Assmosis: The process by which some people seem to absorb success and advancement by kissing up to the boss rather than working hard.

Avoidable: What a bullfighter tries to do.

Beauty Parlor: A place where women curl up and dye.

Beelzebug: Satan in the form of a mosquito, that gets into your bedroom at three in the morning and cannot be cast out.

Blamestorming: Sitting around in a group, discussing why a deadline was missed or a project failed, and who was responsible.

Bozone: The substance surrounding stupid people that stops bright ideas from penetrating. The bozone layer, unfortunately, shows little sign of breaking down in the near future.

More here.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Mama lied

Sickly kid that I was, Mom always told me not to worry about her catching whatever I had because mothers never caught anything from their kids.

I figured out a long time ago that she LIED and once again I'm FORCED to recognize that falsehood.

Da Kid may have gotten over IT a week ago, but now I've got IT.

I feel like shit.


The radio station interrupted its regular broadcasting this morning saying it was being reported at a news conference later in the day, Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Jimmy Smith would announce his retirement from football. And, that's exactly what happened.

At 37 Jimmy's up there in age for the NFL and he's probably slowed down, not that anyone watching him play could tell. Or those still double-teaming him even last year could, either.

Whether on television or in the stands, when Jimmy was on the field you always felt an electricity because you never knew what kind of a spectacular play he was going to make, and he made every single one look routine.

I remember two in particular, though. Da Kid and I were in the stands, at around the 20 yard line, when in the end zone Jimmy Smith (again) defied gravity to grab an uncatchable ball for a touchdown.

Then there's the one we saw on television when Jimmy caught the football, but no touchdown was called because he was ruled out of bounds. Jimmy bounced up and headed straight to Jack Del Rio, the coach, convincing him to toss the flag for an instant replay judgement. "After review" and by a toe, the touchdown was awarded.

Jimmy's retirement wasn't exactly a surprise. He'd mentioned it occasionally, no specific year ever mentioned, with only one thing certain. This was a team he loved and an area he now called home. No matter what the future held, when he retired it would be as a Jaguar.

What was a surprise was that Jimmy announced today. I thought I'd have one more year to watch him play. Da Kid was equally surprised. With Jimmy's numbers and durability, Da Kid was planning on again claiming him for his Fantasy Football Team this year.

Gonna miss him.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Quotable Quotes

"The good people of Darfur have been entrusted to the legitimacy of the UN for more than two years and it's killing them. In 2004, after months of expressing deep concern, grave concern, deep concern over the graves and deep grave concern over whether the graves were deep enough, Kofi Annan took decisive action and appointed a UN committee to look into what's going on. Eventually, they reported back that it's not genocide." -- Mark Steyn

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Monday, May 08, 2006

Guard the Borders Blogburst

Nuestro Himno: Is It Really "Our Anthem?"
By Rahel B. Avraham of CustomerServant

The pro-illegal immigration folks now have their own campaign song. It’s called “Nuestro Himno,” (our anthem), and it’s peddlers say it’s just a re-interpretation of our national anthem, “The Star-spangled Banner” Let’s see if that claim actually holds water.

First, an English translation of “Nuestro Himno.”

Verse 1

It’s sunrise. Do you see by the light of the dawn
What we proudly hailed last nightfall?
Its stars, its stripes
yesterday streamed
above fierce combat
a symbol of victory
the glory of battle, the march toward liberty.
Throughout the night, they proclaimed: “We will defend it!”


Tell me! Does its starry beauty still wave
above the land of the free,
the sacred flag?


It’s time to make a difference the kids, men and the women
Let’s stand for our beliefs, let’s stand for our vision/What about the children, los ninos ?

These kids have no parents, cause all of these mean laws.
See this can’t happen, not only about the Latins.
Asians, blacks and whites and all they do is adding
more and more, let’s not start a war
with all these hard workers,
they can’t help where they were born.

Verse 2

Its stars, its stripes,
Liberty, we are the same.
We are brothers in our anthem.
In fierce combat, a symbol of victory
the glory of battle,
(My people fight on)
the march toward liberty.
(The time has come to break the chains.)
Throughout the night they proclaimed: “We will defend it!”
Tell me! Does its starry beauty still wave
above the land of the free,
the sacred flag?
And now, to put things in perspective, the lyrics to “The Star-spangled Banner.”

The Defense of Fort McHenry
September 20, 1814
By Francis Scott Key

Oh, say can you see, by the dawn’s early light,
What so proudly we hailed at the twilight’s last gleaming?
Whose broad stripes and bright stars, through the perilous fight,
O’er the ramparts we watched, were so gallantly streaming?
And the rockets’ red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there.
O say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

On the shore, dimly seen through the mists of the deep,
Where the foe’s haughty host in dread silence reposes,
What is that which the breeze, o’er the towering steep,
As it fitfully blows, now conceals, now discloses?
Now it catches the gleam of the morning’s first beam,
In full glory reflected now shines on the stream:
‘Tis the star-spangled banner! O long may it wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave.

And where is that band who so vauntingly swore
That the havoc of war and the battle’s confusion
A home and a country should leave us no more?
Their blood has wiped out their foul footstep’s pollution.
No refuge could save the hireling and slave
From the terror of flight, or the gloom of the grave:
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave.

Oh! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved homes and the war’s desolation!
Blest with victory and peace, may the heaven-rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must, for our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: “In God is our trust.”
And the star-spangled banner forever shall wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

As you can see, there’s very little similarity between these two pieces, and that’s just scratching the surface. The fact is “Nuestro Himno” is not a simple translation of our national anthem into Spanish. It’s an attempt to take what is now a very familiar tune, which carries with it very vivid associations for some of us, and slap a pro-invader anthem on top of it.

The Star-spangled Banner was written in response, to a real life-or-death battle. If we had lost that part of the war of 1812, we’d be British subjects. On the other hand, this new cheap imitation that wants so desperately to be our national anthem is a plea for acceptance on behalf of those who have broken the laws of this country, and yet want to be forgiven for their trespass without paying any penalty.

“We know we’ve broken your laws, but can we have some of your hard-earned liberty anyway? After all, we’re brothers. And if you don’t give us some of your freedoms and rights, more than we already have, we say that your flag no longer flies over the land of the free and the home of the brave, because we’re in this land, and we’re not free, and though we were brave enough to cross through Central America and Mexico to sneak across the border, you don’t call us brave. But we are brave! We sneaked past your border guards, and we believe we can halt your economy in one day, and we don’t care if you give us free schooling, government subsidies for every baby born in this country. We’ll wave Mexican flags, and even cover your flag with ours, and we’ll even claim that your entire southwest region is ours and we’re going to take it back, but all the same, we want you to accept us as perfectly legal.”

This, at least, is how I interpret this anthem’s message.

And some record company’s CEO has ingeniously figured out how to cash in in a big way on the immigration fight going on in this country. By asking that “Nuestro Himno” be played simultaneously on Latino radio stations yesterday, and marketing it as simply a re-interpretation of the national anthem that will allow Hispanics who don’t speak English to understand what they’re singing, that CEO stands to make a huge amount of cash, and gain himself a lot of publicity.

If anyone is really interested in understanding what the national anthem’s lyrics mean, they could very easily have the lyrics translated in non-poetic form. But this is poetic license gone horribly wrong. And the national anthem isn’t copyrighted, so no one has to pay any royalties. No record producer could have missed that.

To conclude, I would answer the question I posed in this way. “Nuestro Himno” is a shining example of criminality and greed. Nothing more.

This has been a production of the Guard the Borders Blogburst. It was started by Euphoric Reality, and serves to keep immigration issues in the forefront of our minds as we’re going about our daily lives and continuing to fight the war on terror. If you are concerned with the trend of illegal immigration facing our country, join our Blogburst! Just send an email with your blog name and url to euphoricrealitynet at gmail dot com.


Sunday, May 07, 2006

Rain? Wazzat?

We may actually get some for a change.

We're somewhere within the southern boundary of a Severe Thunderstorm Warning but heck. That's doesn't mean we're actually going to get any rain. A couple weeks ago we spent most of one day under a tornado warning. When a storm actually, eventually came through we had thunder and lightning! Wind! And not one drop of rain.

I really don't want the "Wicked Weather" being predicted for farther north. I just want some rain. I'm really not picky right now but a nice long night of gently falling . . . or even a good afternoon-long soaking would be a good start.

According to a local weatherjerk if we don't get any today, that's it for the week. Now, we did get about 20 minutes worth the day before yesterday, but that's all we've had since I don't know when. All it did was knock the dust back a little bit that afternoon.

We're not the only area in Florida needing rain. The whole state is and has been under a Red Flag Warning. It's so dry just about anything, even someone tossing a lit cigarette out a car window, can start a fire. And has.

Downstate some of the Interstates have been closed on occasion this year because smoke from wildfires made them impassable.

It's dryer this year than it was in 1998. That's a year hard to forget.

First we had so much rain there were floods everywhere and lotsa plant growth. Then when the rain stopped, everything that had grown died and . . . WOOSH!).

Endless gray for weeks: the air, the sky. Everything everywhere. The city closed the rented, low-bid, self-contained office building I worked in when it filled with smoke not because it was close to any of the fires, but because its dingbat heating and AC system sucked in smoke-filled air but wouldn't circulate any of it out.

With all the evacuations Hubby, a Red Cross Mass Disaster Specialist at the time, was on the go constantly making sure various shelters were staffed with volunteers and stocked.

After about five or six weeks when it finally calmed down here, that's when the wildfires really took off downstate. Because of the smoke and fire threat, they ended up postponing the Daytona 500 for several months.

Hubby, who was running a shelter somewhere in the area that the Red Cross had opened for evacuees, did manage to get in a quick call home. To wish me a happy wedding anniversary.

The only thing that would provide enough precipitation to stop the wildfires some "experts" claimed, was if Florida were hit by hurricane.

It was so bad at the time, that became something to hope for.

I sure would like some rain.

Saturday, May 06, 2006

A little miracle

The other day Da Kid forwarded to me an email with an attached photograph that had been sent out by his department's chief. I knew the story behind it because coming in after a shift a few days before, the first words out of Da Kid mouth when he walked in the door had been, "Did Daddy tell you about the little girl?"

Da Kid hadn't been involved but on his station's radio had heard all the traffic starting from when the call went out: Parents had found their small daughter floating in a pond on their property.

The firefighter arrived an instant before Life Squad did. Continuing CPR they loaded the little girl into Life Squad within a minute or so of their arrival heading for the closest hospital. Thirteen minutes later, just minutes before they arrived there, she began to breathe on her own again.

Yep, that's her. The full story is here.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Ain't it the truth!

Parent Job Description...

JOB DESCRIPTION: Long term, team players needed, for challenging permanent work in an, often chaotic environment. Candidates must possess excellent communication and organizational skills and be willing to work variable hours, which will include evenings and weekends and frequent 24 hour shifts on call. Some overnight travel required, including trips to primitive camping sites on rainy weekends and endless sports tournaments in far away cities! Travel expenses not reimbursed. Extensive courier duties also required.

RESPONSIBILITIES: The rest of your life. Must be willing to be hated, at least temporarily, until someone needs $5. Must be willing to bite tongue repeatedly. Also, must possess the physical stamina of a pack mule and be able to go from zero to 60 mph in three seconds flat in case, this time, the screams from the backyard are not someone just crying wolf. Must be willing to face stimulating technical challenges, such as small gadget repair, mysteriously sluggish toilets and stuck zippers. Must screen phone calls, maintain calendars and coordinate production of multiple homework projects. Must have ability to plan and organize social gatherings for clients of all ages and mental outlooks. Must be willing to be indispensable one minute, an embarrassment the next. Must handle assembly and product safety testing of a half million cheap, plastic toys, and battery operated devices. Must always hope for the best but be prepared for the worst. Must assume final, complete accountability for the quality of the end product. Responsibilities also include floor maintenance and janitorial work throughout the facility.

POSSIBILITY FOR ADVANCEMENT & PROMOTION: None. Your job is to remain in the same position for years, without complaining, constantly retraining and updating your skills, so that those in your charge can ultimately surpass you.

PREVIOUS EXPERIENCE: None required unfortunately. On-the-job training offered on a continually exhausting basis.

WAGES AND COMPENSATION: Get this! You pay them! Offering frequent raises and bonuses. A balloon payment is due when they turn 18 because of the assumption that college will help them become financially independent. When you die, you give them whatever is left. The oddest thing about this reverse-salary scheme is that you actually enjoy it and wish you could only do more.

BENEFITS: While no health or dental insurance, no pension, no tuition reimbursement, no paid holidays and no stock options are offered; this job supplies limitless opportunities for personal growth and free hugs for life if you play your cards right.

Via: Hey Joe!