Search - JEvents
Search - Categories
Search - Contacts
Search - Content
Search - News Feeds
Search - Web Links
Search - SunBay
Search - JComments
Production

Production

Wednesday, 29 March 2017 22:19

Is McCain Hijacking Trump's Foreign Policy?

"The senator from Kentucky," said John McCain, speaking of his colleague Rand Paul, "is working for Vladimir Putin ... and I do not say that lightly."

What did Sen. Paul do to deserve being called a hireling of Vladimir Putin?

He declined to support McCain's call for a unanimous Senate vote to bring Montenegro into NATO as the 29th member of a Cold War alliance President Trump has called "obsolete."

Bordered by Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Serbia, Kosovo and Albania, tiny Montenegro has a population roughly that of D.C., and sits on the western coast of the most volatile peninsula in Europe.

What strategic benefit would accrue from having Montenegro as an ally that would justify the risk of our having to go to war should some neighbor breach Montenegro's borders?

Historically, the Balkans have been an incubator of war. In the 19th century, Otto van Bismarck predicted that when the Great War came, it would come out of "some damn fool thing in the Balkans." And so it did when the Austrian archduke was assassinated in Sarajevo June 28, 1914 by Serbian ethnonationalist Gavrilo Princip.

Aflame with ethnic, civil and sectarian war in the 1990s, the western Balkans are again in political turmoil. Milo Djukanovic, the longtime Montenegrin prime minister who resigned on election day in October, claims that he was targeted for assassination by Russia to prevent Montenegro's accession to NATO.

Russia denies it. But on the Senate floor, McCain raged at Rand Paul: "You are achieving the objectives of Vladimir Putin ... trying to dismember this small country which has already been the subject of an attempted coup."

But if Montenegro, awash in corruption and crime, is on the verge of an uprising or coup, why would the U.S. issue a war guarantee that could vault us into a confrontation with Russia -- without a full Senate debate?

The vote that needs explaining here is not Rand Paul's.

It is the votes of those senators who are handing out U.S.-NATO war guarantees to countries most Americans could not find on a map.

Is no one besides Sen. Paul asking the relevant questions here?

What vital U.S. interest is imperiled in who comes to power in Podgorica, Montenegro? Why cannot Europe handle this problem in its own back yard?

Has President Trump given McCain, who wanted President Bush to intervene in a Russia-Georgia war -- over South Ossetia! -- carte blanche to hand out war guarantees to unstable Balkan states?

Did Trump approve the expansion of NATO into all the successor states born of the bloody breakup of Yugoslavia?

Or is McCain hijacking U.S. foreign policy on NATO and Russia?

President Trump should tell the Senate: No more admissions to NATO, no more U.S. war guarantees, unless I have recommended or approved them. Foreign policy is made in the White House, not on the Senate floor.

Indeed, what happened to the foreign policy America voted for -- rapprochement with Russia, an end to U.S. wars in the Middle East, and having rich allies share more of the cost of their own defense?

It is U.S., not NATO defense spending that is rising to more than $50 billion this year. And today we learn the Pentagon has drawn up plans for the insertion of 1,000 more U.S. troops into Syria. While the ISIS caliphate seems doomed, this six-year Syrian war is far from over.

An al-Qaida subsidiary, the Nusra Front, has become the most formidable rebel fighting group. Syria's army, with the backing of Russia, Iran, Hezbollah and Shiite militias from across the Middle East, has carved out most of the territory it needs.

The Turkish army is now in Syria, beside its rebel allies. Their main enemy: Syria's Kurds, who are America's allies.

From our longest war, Afghanistan, comes word from U.S. Gen. John Nicholson that we and our Afghan allies are in a "stalemate" with the Taliban, and he will need a "few thousand" more U.S. troops -- to augment the 8,500 President Obama left behind when he left office.

Some 5,000 U.S. troops are in Iraq, helping to liberate Mosul from ISIS. In Kabul, Baghdad and Damascus, terrorist bombings are a weekly, if not a daily, occurrence.

Then there is the U.S. troop buildup in Poland and the Baltic, the U.S. deployment of a missile defense to South Korea after multiple missile tests in the North, and Russia and China talking of upgrading their nuclear arsenals to counter U.S. missile defenses in Poland, Romania and South Korea.

In and around the waters of the Persian Gulf, United States warships are harassed by Iranian patrol boats, as Tehran test-fires anti-ship and anti-aircraft missiles to send the Americans a message: Attack us and it will not be a cakewalk war.Patrick J. Buchanan

Wednesday, 29 March 2017 22:09

Root for Olympic Gold Mine

The increasing likelihood that Los Angeles will be chosen to host the 2024 Olympic Games comes as good news to the vast majority of Southern Californians.

A poll last year showed more than 80 percent of L.A. County residents either "strongly supportive" or "somewhat supportive" of the Summer Olympics coming here for the third time.

Now, if we didn't know better, we'd think the main appeal of the Olympics in your backyard would be the chance to watch the world's greatest athletes compete for sport's biggest prizes. But a Loyola Marymount University poll last year found the top reasons Angelenos want the Olympics had to do with the expectation that the event would be good for the economy, that it would create a general economic boost, create jobs and spark tourism.

Going to the Games yourself? Maybe people already realized that, like all major sports events, the most popular competitions would be unaffordable for the typical family.

That was confirmed last month when L.A.'s latest bid documents showed the average ticket for the 2024 Olympics would cost $136.87. You could get into the canoe preliminaries for $5.10. But major events? You're looking at $256 to watch athletes go for gold medals in basketball, $270 in diving, $370 in gymnastics, $420 in swimming, $457 in track and field. The much-anticipated opening ceremony? Forget it -- the average ticket would cost $1,783.

If, as projected, 97 percent of seats were sold, tickets would account for about $1.2 billion of the L.A. Olympics' $5.3 budget.

With Budapest dropping its bid, either Paris or L.A. will be chosen in September to host the 2024 Games. L.A.'s experience with the Olympics (1932, 1984) and wealth of existing venues allow it to promise a "low-cost, low-risk" bid. Mayor Eric Garcetti says the Games not only would not cost the city money but would be an economic boon, a claim backed by a Beacon

Economics/UC Riverside study in January saying the event would generate up to $11.2 billion for the economy.

Popular support would depend on the L.A. Games being a gold mine, as much fiscally as athletically. All the more reason for organizers and public officials to make sure no public expense is required.

Whether or not many Angelenos would get to see the Games themselves, they'd expect to cheer as the economic gains roll in.

Wednesday, 29 March 2017 22:03

Summer Solar Eclipse 8-21-17

A total solar eclipse will pass across a long and thin path of U.S. soil stretching from Oregon to South Carolina this summer on August 21. An Eclipse occurs when the moon, sun and Earth align, allowing the moon to cast a shadow on the Earth's surface.

While residents in all states will be able to see a partial eclipse, only those in a handful of states will be able to see the "total eclipse" -- the perfect moment in which the sun's light is fully blocked, allowing star gazers to stare directly at the moon and see a halo. (pictured on the right)

The last total eclipse was visible in the U.S. on February 26, 1979, but the shadow onlypassed across Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Wyoming and up into Canada.

The next time an eclipse will be in the U.S. will be on April 8, 2024 and will stretch from Texas to Ohio.

Wednesday, 29 March 2017 21:56

Hiding The Media's Disapproval Rating

The latest poll by USA Today and Suffolk University carried some eye-opening numbers about public disapproval of the media's aggressive attempts to run the country. It found that President Trump has a 47 percent approval rating and that 44 percent disapprove of him.

That's not surprising. The media talk about his unpopularity all the time.

But here's what they don't talk about: their own numbers. Only 37 percent of Americans have a favorable opinion of their job performance. A whopping 50 percent have an unfavorable opinion.

Look at the numbers by party identification. Republican unfavorable opinion of the media? It's 78 percent. Only 10 percent have a favorable opinion. The Democrats are the opposite: Sixty-nine percent hold a favorable view, and 19 percent hold an unfavorable view.

The pollsters offered other media questions, asking: "President Trump has said journalists and the media are the enemy of the American people. Do you agree or disagree?" That's an exaggerated question. Trump's actual tweet accused only ABC, CBS, CNN, NBC and the "failing" New York Times of being "fake news" and the "enemy of the American people."

Many conservatives would steer clear of saying that journalists (liberal media and conservative media) are the enemy of the people and stick with chief White House strategist Steve Bannon's take that the media are the "opposition party" to Trump. But even so, 64 percent of Republicans in the poll agreed with Trump, and only 29 percent disagreed. Democrats sided with their liberal-media buddies, 88 percent disagreeing and 9 percent agreeing.

These pollsters also asked the public which statement they agreed with, "President Trump is right when he says the news media is unfair and biased against him" or "The news media is right when they say they are appropriately holding the White House accountable."

This result clearly demonstrates how divided the country is on the media under President Trump. Seventy-nine percent of Republicans agree with Trump, and 12 percent disagree. Democrats align with the media's sudden rush to "accountability," 86 percent disagreeing and 7 percent in agreement.

Both sides know the media is liberal.

These results were submerged in USA Today. The front-page story on the overall poll was headlined "Temperament and tweets tripping up president." Reporter Susan Page began saying, "President Trump gets high marks for leadership amid growing economic optimism, a new USA TODAY/Suffolk University Poll finds, but questions about his temperament and his tweets have cost him the political boost that a president traditionally gets from that good news."

Page also underlined that his 47 percent approval rating makes him "the first president in modern times not to score majority approval at this early point in his tenure." Fifty-nine percent would like Trump to turn down the tweeting, but even we've made that recommendation.

The poll questions about the media finally make a brief appearance 23 paragraphs deep in the story but without the partisan breakdown. Page says: "Meanwhile, Trump's attacks on reporters divide Americans: 42% say he is right when he says the news media are unfair and biased against him; 48% say the news media are right when they say they are appropriately holding the White House accountable. Are the news media 'the enemy of the American people' as the president has asserted? One-third of Americans, 34%, agree with him. Fifty-nine percent disagree."

The media's rating of 37 percent favorable and 50 percent unfavorable was left out.

The newspaper industry is declining, as USA Today surely knows: Gannett split into two companies in 2015, one for broadcasting and one for the less profitable print business. It is interesting to watch elite newspapers in the Trump era doubling down on the liberal-activist course. There's a reason half the country no longer cares to read them.

L. Brent Bozell III
and Tim Graham

Since this article, (2 Parts), speaks to a science based topic, I need to provide my readers with my topic related background.

I attended GMI, an Engineering College owned by General Motors Corporation. I majored in Metallurgy and minored in Chemistry in the 5 year program and graduated at the top of my class. I became an FBI Agent, under their Science Program, right after graduation!

By the 1970s, the US was in serious pollution trouble. Those were the days that “dilution was the solution to pollution”…dump it in the lake! We desperately needed an Environmental Protection Agency and Laws. On 12-2-70, President Nixon created the EPA by EO! They directed the FBI to be the lead Law Enforcement Agency, US Attorneys to be the Prosecutors and gave the States the ability to enforce EPA regulations.

I reluctantly “accepted” the offer (no choice), to establish the FBI Environmental Crimes Program for the Western District of NY, Buffalo to Rochester, 17 counties. I was firmly entrenched in the Violent Crimes program but agreed to do the EPA thing for a few years as there truly was a need as witnessed by the Love Canal, my home town, Niagara Falls, NY. I had a personal interest!

I attended EPA schools with then Erie County Prosecutor now Judge Sheila DiTullio, and AUSA Marty Littlefield to learn the laws and then to train other investigators. Congress passed numerous Hazardous Waste laws with the main Laws referred to as the “big 8 laws”; RECRA (the cradle to grave law), CIRCLA, CLEAN AIR, CLEAN WATER, TSCA and many more. I worked very closely with the NY Dept of Conservation (DEC) and they were the lead agency in NY to enforce the EPA regulations. There was virtually no EPA presence in NY in the late 1970s! DEC did the EPA’s job then and probably does now!

We investigated illegal dumping of Hazardous waste and I drew up several Search Warrants and obtained some of the first Federal Convictions for Environmental Crimes in western NY and closed one Hazardous Waste Disposal Faculty. The most dangerous matter we worked was the West Valley, New York, Nuclear Waste Project! There were numerous allegations of illegal transport and disposal of highly active radiation waste at the site, so much so, that the then USA Dennis Vacco, AUSA Littlefield, my SAC and I met with the Chief Deputy Attorney General, in Washington DC. Dennis did a superb job leading the charge and convinced the AG to allow us to execute a Search Warrant on the Facility. This was the #1 case in the country at the time and the entire country was on “toxic waste” alert!

I drew up the affidavit, AUSA Littlefield drew up the warrant and we executed it, and thank God we found that the allegations were not true! The contractors at West Valley were doing an excellent job following all the laws and were actually more cautious than required! They processed nuclear liquid into glass balls for safer disposal. The radiation in some enclosed areas was deadly and they had it completely contained and under control! Believe me we went in VERY tough, and VERY concerned for our own health as well as yours and were very happy that a very dangerous site was extremely safe/proper!!

For many years the EPA provided an essential service HOWEVER things have changed! The EPA is now doing more harm to our economy than good for the environment! They have over regulated to the point that they have made doing business in the US too expensive for manufacturers who produce waste and CO2, which is ALL manufacturers. They have chased those jobs to 3rd world countries that have NO EPA, NO hazardous waste laws, NO “lead paint” law, NO OSHA laws, NO labor laws…so we are buying products, made in countries that violate everything we spent billions to clean up, and at the expense of our work force and THE ENVIRONMENT by supporting Worldwide Pollution worse than ours ever was !!!!!

It’s time to turn ALL EPA functions over to the States which are doing EPA’s job anyway and close the doors on EPA completely! Their budget back then was 15 billion a year!!!They did their job, very well, until they were forced to create laws!

Now it’s time to follow the Constitution and put things back in order and allow Congress to make the laws, not regulatory Agencies. The States are well prepared to handle the job

CO2;
These are IRREFUTABLE FACTS ( that are easily verified), about CO2 and its value to mankind …anyone who tells you otherwise already has an opinion and doesn’t want to know the facts…walk away, PERIOD;
1. Carbon dioxide is essential for the production of food and oxygen!
2. Trees and plant life require a MINIMUM CO2 of 180 to 200 ppm, by volume, to SURVIVE. Anything less and they die and so will you!
3. Current CO2 concentrations in our atmosphere are about 340ppm!
4. Ideal CO2 for plant life and you is between 1000 to 2000ppm !
5. Plant life in the USA is currently “starving” for CO2 and CO2 emissions MUST be increased to at least 1000ppm!!!!
6. If you seal a green house with plant life inside, the CO2 concentration will diminish to almost zero and all plant life will die!
7. If you pump CO2 into that same greenhouse from burnt coal or ANY fossil fuel, the plant life will flourish! So if your plants are dying in your green house, introduce CO2!
8. Scientists have no idea what impact CO2, produced by man, has on the Earth’s “climate change” except that it’s essential for life!
9. “Excess” CO2 falls into the Oceans, increasing Ocean plant growth and seems to follow unexplained, “Mother Nature” balances between CO2, our atmosphere and our Oceans!

ENERGY;
God blessed America with an abundance of Natural resources from trees and fresh water to Natural Gas (enough to power the entire US indefinitely), coal (enough to power America for a hundred years at least), oil (more than all OPEC combined), Uranium, Gold, Silver, you name it we got it, BUT we aren’t using it wisely!!!

Here are some ideas;
Direct all the States to build a new power plant with interest paying loans (stimulus loans) from the government. They must use Made in the USA materials and US citizens. When built, they must sell to private utility companies and repay the loans. Put massive green houses near the fossil fuel plants and pipe their CO2 emissions into the food growing plants! Loan stimulus money, the same way, to the necessary steel, concrete, drywall plants to build the power plants! Then turn to our Grid and do the same deal and… make it EMP proof!

We have the safest, most technologically advanced Nuclear power plants in the world. They are the cleanest and most efficient power plants, next to hydro. Build them as well!

Regarding the US oil finds, we have the LARGEST oil discoveries in the world and more oil than all OPEC combined! The largest is the Colorado Green River Reserve (oil shale) and after 3,000 test wells, according to government sources, it has enough “usable” oil to provide all America’s needs, by itself, for 50 years. The second is the Bakkan in Williston, North Dakota with estimates of maybe 20 billion barrels. It went from zero to 1.25 million barrels a day in a year and a half! Prudhoe Bay, Alaska is the largest producing oil reserve in the US!

The oil shale in Colorado is actually a solid with oil in it that must be removed. It is expensive but worth doing however it’s on government lands and Obama stopped everything just like he did to the pipeline. Obama also did an underhanded deal with Canada to stop off shore drilling. People like Obama have agendas that are so radical that reasonable people have a hard time believing that anyone could possibly do things that incredibly STUPID! About 80% of our power is fossil fuel!! Obama wants to do away with fossil fuel and all CO2 emissions. That’s insane; we cannot exist without CO2 or electricity! If he did what he says, we could not possibly exist! The only person to benefit from Barack Obama’s Presidency was Obama, think about it! Did you? I sure didn’t!

ND went to zero unemployment and to an average income of $60,000 in 1 ½ years, because of the oil output from the Bakkan! Saudi Arabia then dropped the OPEC barrel price which caused the Bakkan to cut way back. Because of Saudi Arabia, unemployment is now climbing. The price of oil decreasing is good, the reason for it, Saudi Arabia, is NOT! Saudi Arabia must NOT control our economy!

Increased oil output, more fossil fuel Power Plants means better Health because of CO2, more jobs, better jobs, Energy Independence, and an America you can be proud of! Barack Obama’s SOLE allegiance is to Allah, NOT to you! Some day those of you who refuse to accept reality will be awaken from your deep sleep! Obama was and IS intent on destroying your Rule of Law, your Constitution and your freedom! Pull your head out of that dark place you have you head stuck and LISTEN instead of DENYING what Obama has and is saying and doing!

Not utilizing our resources, now that we have the knowledge and the Laws to protect our environment, borders on insanity and I don’t blame people like Putin and countries like China, Iran, and North Korea thinking we are weak, stupid and gullible. We put forth an image of a foolish people so we get what we ask for. I believe, now that we are NOT led by a fool with a personal agenda to be an Ayatollah, we will eventually regain the respect that, at least those of us who elected President Trump, deserve!.

My opinion and I’m sticking to it!!! Part II, Global Warming, next week!

J Gary DiLaura,
FBI Retired

Hypothetically, let's say our country is worth 40 Trillion dollars today. That’s including everything, land, water, cities and everything else. The right half is green, hydrated, and productive, where most of us live. The left side is dry, barren, and not so productive, where 25% of the population live. The green lush right side of the USA is worth $25 trillion. The dry barren left half is worth $15 Trillion. What if we could actually transform the land on the left side increasing its value by $1 Trillion or more each year?

How can the dry barren desert become lush and productive? That’s simple, make it rain! You might think this isn’t possible, but there is a way. If we were to introduce large volumes of water into the hot dry dessert that water would quickly evaporate and form clouds. Those clouds would travel on established wind currents over the driest hottest zones making it rain.

For this to be effective billions of gallons of water would be needed. Think about the map of the USA, what lies on the other side of the deserts, California of course. But what’s after that? The ocean!!

Yes the ocean, limitless amounts of water only 30 miles away from the dessert lands that are below sea level. We have 550 square miles of dry desert land below sea level in this zone that could potentially be filled with this ocean water and quite easily by creating a sea level canal just using gravity.

This would also create the possibility for hydroelectricity that could supply 4 to 5 million homes and businesses as this water is sent to low lands to create new bodies of water that would rapidly evaporate thus creating rain in the dessert. Fresh water is becoming scarcer every year and desserts are expanding faster than ever. At the same time Sea level is rising faster than ever. This solution would address both issues.

Of course the sea water is not fresh water but it will evaporate. You might ask is this a problem? Well no not at all. There are already many bodies of dry salt lakes salt flats in this zone. We also have two large salt lakes. For instance the Salton Sea in California and the Great Salt Lake in Utah which is evaporating could be refilled. The water that evaporates would come down as clean fresh rain water and the salt is left behind in the process. This salt has value and can be sold at 20 dollars a ton today. 100 billion gallons of salt water contains ¼ cup of salt per gallon. That would be 25 billion pounds of salt a day. Worth millions daily. That salt would be easily harvested from the dessert ground to be sold to market. The salt sold money would also fund the project. Of course it's more complicated than that but the idea is simple.

This idea is radically simple yet hasn’t been thought to be a practical idea in the past. Today we have severe droughts in the west and the ground water in the central part of the country is drying up at an alarming rate. Without this ground water supplied for farming in the mid-west we will be facing a crop growing crisis that will affect us all. This crisis is real and inevitable unless we take drastic steps to fix it. We can make it rain! We can increase our crop growing potential in the west where there is an abundance of sun for growing but not enough water. The potential for habitable land growth and clean power sources are quite great.

Millions of trees could be planted in the near future providing oxygen and reducing carbon in the atmosphere. The possibilities are endless. If this idea were to be implemented. In time the new bodies of water created could also be used for water front property, recreation, and industry.

When this idea is developed it would create opportunity in the western part of the USA like never before imagined, increasing the value of the territory One trillion dollars or more each year.

Now is the time to consider out of the box solutions for problems that we face as a nation and globally. Droughts, rising sea levels, crop failures, deforestation from fires and tree harvesting are all issues we could address by bringing salt water into the desert.

We have all we need to fix these problems, we need to make it happen. Hopefully our next administration will see the potential and make it happen. Let’s make America Green, as we make America great again!

Pat Amedeo

Thursday, 23 March 2017 22:43

THE TRANSFERABLE SKILL OF MILITARY SERVICE

When Johnny comes marching home again, he sometimes runs for Congress. Jeannie, too.

Since George Washington became president, war veterans have played a disproportionate role in American life, culture and politics. A dozen generals have become president, and several times -- in 1848, when Lewis Cass ran against Zachary Taylor; in 1852, when Franklin Pierce ran against Winfield Scott; and in 1880, when James Garfield ran against Winfield Scott Hancock -- two generals opposed each other for the presidency.

Every president from 1933 to 1991, with the exception of Jimmy Carter, who graduated from the Naval Academy in 1946, was involved in World War II. For a long period, a majority of senators were World War II veterans. Korean War veterans such as Charles Rangel of New York and Warren B. Rudman of New Hampshire, along with Vietnam War veterans such as Bob Kerrey of Nebraska, John F. Kerry of Massachusetts and John McCain of Arizona, have played major roles on and off Capitol Hill.

Now, with World War II, Korea and Vietnam retreating into the past, a new era of political veterans is dawning, and a group of activists is mobilizing to recruit Iraq and Afghan veterans, along with veterans of national-service programs like the Peace Corps, to run for office at a time when trust in government is at alarming lows.

"The lack of leadership is not about the lack of leaders," said Emily Cherniack, founder and executive director of New Politics. "We have leaders. They're just not running for office, because they're not part of the political ecosystem."

One of them who did run is Rep. Seth Moulton, who represents this northeastern colonial corner of Massachusetts in the House with an unusually attractive profile: four tours in Iraq as a Marine Corps infantry officer (including two as a special assistant to Gen. David Petraeus), followed by civilian tours at the Harvard Business School and the Kennedy School of Government.

"I think about three of the roles the Marines talk about -- honor, courage, commitment -- and I know that we need all three in politics, especially the element about making a commitment to your country over your own interests or your party's interests," said Moulton, a Democrat elected in 2014. He said serving in Congress was "the first job I've had since the Marines when I truly feel that I am working not for my paycheck but to serve the people."

That echoes the perspective of retired Gen. Stanley McChrystal, who led American forces in Afghanistan and who said in an interview that the New Politics effort could help "infuse" American political life with the sense of sacrifice and selflessness that is implicit in military service. He has given strong support to the group.

"This is a great idea," former Senate majority leader Robert J. Dole, the 1996 Republican presidential nominee, said in a telephone conversation the other day. "These people are respected. They did what they were asked to do and made a sacrifice for their country. In our case, we weren't Democrats and Republicans; we were veterans -- and friends."

The election of Donald J. Trump prompted what Cherniack called an "onslaught" of interest by veterans in running for office, many of whom, she added, said "they didn't fight for their country to see it split apart." She went on: "They have a real mission, a sense of purpose. They may be Democrats or Republicans, but they don't think in a partisan way. They're in this for service."

This is not the first time a generation of veterans, matured by military service and willing to fight domestically for the values they fought for globally, set their sights on political office. Two Navy second lieutenants, Richard M. Nixon of California and John F. Kennedy of Massachusetts, ran for the House in 1946, the first elections after World War II. They dominated American political life for decades and collided in the 1960 presidential election.

Two other World War II veterans would be tied forever as public servants and as political rivals. Dole, of Kansas, and George H.W. Bush, of Connecticut, would serve consecutive terms as chairs of the Republican National Committee during difficult days in the Watergate era. They followed each other as Republican vice-presidential nominees. They competed against each other twice, in 1980 and 1988, for the GOP presidential nomination. They served as consecutive Republican presidential nominees. And then, in their 90s, they reached a gentle rapprochement and today serve as symbols of the selflessness of service.
In the unlikely location of Battle Creek, Michigan, can be found the ultimate testament to the role veterans have played in American politics. There sits a complex of 21 buildings on 24 acres called the Hart-Dole-Inouye Federal Center. It is named for Dole, 93 years old and a Republican, and two deceased Democratic senators, Daniel K. Inouye of Hawaii and Philip Hart of Michigan.

The three were hospitalized on one floor in a onetime sanitarium after being wounded, Hart during D-Day and Inouye and Dole in combat in Italy. It was there, in a facility that once treated Mary Todd Lincoln and Sojourner Truth, that the young Inouye introduced the young Dole to the game of bridge, and where the two -- one with an arm blasted apart, another an amputee with a stomach injury from a grenade explosion -- dreamed about running for Congress.

"When I first came to Congress, there were a lot of veterans," Dole said. "It provided a collegial group that bridged party. That's the most important thing. You got acquainted with people you might otherwise never know. This gave you a chance to build some friendships, and to build bridges."

New Politics supported five candidates in 2014, winning three of the races, including Moulton's. Last year, the group supported 23 candidates, with 17 making it through primaries and 13 winning general elections. One of them, Mike Gallagher, a Marine with a Ph.D., now sits in the House as a Wisconsin Republican. He twice served as a commander of intelligence teams in Al Anbar Province in Iraq.

"Military service gives people a firsthand understanding about what it's like to be asked to take on serious responsibility," said James E. Wright, a former Marine who served as president of Dartmouth College and is the author of a history of the American veteran. "All of them today are volunteers, and they all have demonstrated their determination to make a difference."

David M. Shribman

It was an honor to be invited to spend a few days on the campus of Indiana Wesleyan University to speak to the students on money matters, specifically, the loans many of them will take away as part of their college experience.

Remember the days when to get a loan you had to qualify and prove you had the capacity to repay the debt? Well, for college students, those days are history. They do not need to have a job or a cosigner to get huge amounts of money in federal student loans. From what I discovered on my visit, students (and in many cases, their parents) are more than willing to accept as much as they can get in federal student loans because these days that's just the normal way to pay for college.

But here's the good news: These young adults are willing to listen to advice from someone who's been around the block with debt. Seizing the moment, here is what I told them:

Accept the least amount of help possible, not the most available help. Just because you can borrow enough money each semester to pay for tuition, room and board and books doesn't mean you should. You'll never believe how difficult it is to pay back. Check yourself out of governmental outpatient care. Get a job. And get two or three in the summer. Finish your degree as soon as possible instead of taking it slow and easy. Make your own way as soon as possible and you'll reap the benefits for the rest of your life.

Understand what entry-level means. There's a pervasive attitude among college students that really great jobs await those with degrees. Yes, your lifetime earnings will surpass what your peers without degrees can expect to earn but not in the beginning. You must plan to start at the bottom. This is called the entry level. There are no really great-paying jobs at the entry level. Teachers, attorneys, doctors, stockbrokers -- all professions require entry at the bottom. That means the lowest pay. If you think you had to scrape and scrimp in college, consider that a rehearsal for the real world. Do not fantasize about making the big bucks from the get-go.

'Tis easier to borrow than to repay. For every dollar you borrow to pay for college, the typical repayment plan will require that you pay back at least two dollars. You can reject that plan if you work twice as hard in your first three years out of school -- even harder than you worked in college. Double up on your payments. Work as many jobs as possible. Delay starting a family if possible. Don't buy a new car or dive headlong into a big house payment. Concentrate on wiping out your student debts as quickly as possible. That's a gift you can give yourself that you will never regret.

Enjoy these years in college. Even with all the pressure of paying for your education while keeping up your good grades, make sure you learn all you can, do all you can and pay all you can now. That's the way to make these the best years of your life.

Mary Hunt

Snoop Dogpoop did a video, very recently, that clearly shows someone, depicted by Mr. Dogpoop shooting the President in the head! That is a Felony under our law and I am calling for Snoop Dogg’s arrest. I also believe that a Federal Court order should be obtained by DOJ prohibiting the airing of any Snoop Dogg recordings and videos until the criminal matter isadjudicated in Federal Court!

I have news for Mr. Snoop Dogpoop, threats against the President of the United States are against our Rule of Law!

He should have someone read the law to him! Title 18 Section 871 USC States; (a)

Whoever knowingly and willfully …(uses the mail to make)… any threat to take the life of, to kidnap, or to inflict bodily harm upon the President of the United States, the President-elect, the Vice President… or knowingly and willfully otherwise makes “any” such threat against the President, President-elect, Vice President or other officer next in the order of succession to the office of President, or Vice President-elect, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than five years, or both.

From wikipedia, “The prototype for Section 871 was the English Treason Act 1351, which made it a crime to "compass or imagine" the death of the King. Convictions under 18 U.S.C. § 871 have been sustained for declaring that "President Wilson ought to be killed. It is a wonder some one has not done it already. If I had an opportunity, I would do it myself.";[7] and for declaring that "Wilson is a wooden-headed son of a bitch. I wish Wilson was in hell, and if I had the power I would put him there."[8] In a later era, a conviction was sustained for displaying posters urging passersby to "hang [President] Roosevelt”.
Mr. Dogpoop needs to be taught a lesson his mommy never taught him, apparently! Even wealthy, ignorant people like him and Madonna, must obey our laws, even if they are rich and shameless!

J Gary DiLaura

Fort Myers Beach resident, Sheena Brook, 33, made it onto "Team Adam" on the NBC's TV singing competition “The Voice.”

Brook is a familiar face in the Southwest Florida music scene. The country singer-songwriter often performs at local bars and festivals. Sheena Brook stated, "I've kind of done all this different stuff, and I always get a little nervous, but this is a different experience. I was wicked nervous."

Brook auditioned for “The Voice” in Atlanta last year, she never imagined she’d be chosen out of thousands of singers to be in the top 48. “It’s such an honor,” she says. “It really is.”

"I was just going out there to sing, and I cant even describe to you what it felt like. It was like, 'Holy cow, you just pressed your button for me,' and for someone to take on a risk on you, too."

Brook’s grew up singing in church choirs but didn’t start performing on local stages until about three years ago. “For the longest time, I just didn’t think I could entertain people,” Brook says. “I thought, ‘I’d be so boring. Who’d want to watch me?"

Devon Morreale Parker, assistant director at Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center states, “Sheena’s got a fantastic stage presence, she really engages the audience. She’s just fantastic.”

Adam Levine of "The Voice" agreed with, "Wow!"...."Wow..Wow!!" Levine said he has big plans for Sheena Brook.

Brook’s stunned response: “Holy crap!”

If all goes well, she could become a household name and a nationally successful musician.

“It’s a beautiful life and something I love,” she says. “To play music for a living is something I’m really proud of.”