A Conservative Learns Some New Facts

The Far Away Brothers is one book which I recommend. It is history, political science and social studies all rolled into one. Auren Markham did a fine job of unraveling the complexities of US policies which did not make any sense to me like DACA. I’ve written a few blog pieces on GrumpaJoesplace.com about how befuddled I was about the thousands of kids migrating to the USA from Central America. How could little kids do that by themselves? That is one of the questions she answered for me. Another question I asked is why did the USA advertise its DACA policy in Central America? Had our administration gone nuts? What she leads me to believe is that our Department of Homeland Security did just the opposite. Why I heard that the USA encouraged Central Americans to migrate is still a mystery, but I think it might have been Fake News that did it.
Markham exposes why kids from El Salvador are leaving in droves. It is simple and it has nothing to do with America. It has everything to do with Central American government’s inability to improve conditions in their countries, their inability to control gangs, and their excessive corruption. Where have we heard that before? In the meantime, the USA in its compassion, and mercy tries to legislate solutions to solve problems that we know nothing about. In my years as an engineer we learned to find to the root-cause. DACA legislation resulted from being unable to reach the root-cause. The frustration of passing laws without knowing what problem the law deals with in a country we have absolutely no intimate  knowledge of. Even if did have intimate knowledge, how would we go about implementing laws in a foreign country to solve their inner problems? Meanwhile the people of Central America look to the North as a place where the ‘streets are paved in gold,’ and look upon the USA as the answer to all of their problems.
All along I wondered how young kids could travel over a thousand miles without any resources. They didn’t, they paid big money to hire a Coyote to get them into the USA. I should say, their parents paid big money by borrowing at ridiculous interest rates ( 20% +) , and expecting their liberated kid to work it off. What they don’t realize is the infinite maze of agencies, and systems legislated to insure only those who seek political asylum qualify, and not easily. Why these same people didn’t pay to get their kids a passport and visa before they paid for the coyote remains a mystery. In the meantime, we Americans swallow the bill to pay for the exorbitant court costs for years of needless red tape. I can now see why groups like La Raza want open borders, and free passage across borders to prevail.
Author Markham tells this story by telling the story of  one family with nine kids from El Salvador whose one son gets in trouble with a gang that threatens to kill him.  His loving parents pay for his escape. After he leaves, his twin brother who looks exactly like him fears the gang will kill him by mistake, so the parents take another juice loan to get the twin out-of-town. The story of their escape and arrival in the US is a mind-boggling drama that none of us would want to live through, but they make it.

I gave this book four stars.

How Not To Solve a Problem


Most people who are problem solvers, or in business know that you spend your effort on things that are relevant. As an engineer, I was taught the Pareto principle which simple states that 80% of the benefit comes from 20% of the effort. I used this rule on every problem I could. When you have limited resources like engineers, salespeople, and machinists why try to solve every stinking problem at the same time? The first thing I thought of when I spotted the list above is the Pareto Principle. Using the Pareto method I can tell you that more lives would be saved if we attack heart disease or cancer first. Seven million people die from cancer worldwide. That is more than all the lives lost due to the problems in the entire list below it. I guess liberals cannot do math nor figure out that the number of lives lost to shootings is minimal when compared to heart disease and cancer.  We have all lost someone due to heart disease and cancer, yet few of us has lost someone because of a shooting. I don’t mean to disrespect any person’s life with my comments, but facts are facts.

The only time we came close to losing that many lives due to violence over disease was in WWII, Korea, and Viet Nam. So why are people so outraged by mass shootings? I have no clue, but it is a waste of energy to try to solve the problem when there are so many other pressing problems to solve first.

I’m thinking that the horror of mass death is too great because most of the people killed were young and vibrant, and filled with life. They had families and goals to reach. Well, how about the 1,960 kids who die from cancer every year? Dying a slow death from cancer is a lot more horrifying for the person than dying in an instant from a bullet.

Death brings out emotions within us when we hear about them, especially when they are senseless. So why spend untold amounts of money on writing laws that we will forget about within a month? We should instead spend some money on the grieving people who are outraged by these acts because they are in mental anguish. Having experienced grief myself I feel for the loved ones who survive. It is they who will suffer from grief for years, and you know what? Banning guns will not solve their problems. Chicago is a fine example of how useless gun bans are. More people are killed in a Chicago weekend by guns than were killed in Las Vegas. People who want guns get them and use them to kill regardless of the laws on the books. I read a news article this week that in London where guns are banned, and there is a ten-year prison sentence if you are caught with one, that gun crime is on the rise. In the meantime, people are still being killed by knives, hatchets, and rocks. Where are the bans on these items?

No Explanation Needed

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Dream A Little Dream

When I listen to all the talk about DACA, and about how valuable the Dreamers are to our country I often wonder why they haven’t spoken up about the American Dream. Why don’t the Dreamers exclaim the virtues of America in comparison to their own country? Why haven’t they spoken of the great gifts they received by coming here? In comparison, other immigrants from countries further removed from the USA speak highly of their experiences. Take for example, the speech given by a Vietnamese boy, now a man, who had to flee his country. Luckily he was able to come to America. His love for America was developed by living here, and living with the freedom he didn’t have in Viet Nam.

Let hear something positive from the dreamers. Instead, we watch them demonstrate, hoot, and holler about being sent back to their homeland. They have been given a gift that others did not receive but are eternally grateful for. We don’t put demands on them, yet they proclaim their rights are being denied. What rights? Who gave them these rights? Why do they think they have rights? In school, were they taught in the English language or the language of their home country? Did they receive health care? Did they receive financial aid? Have they asked to become citizens? I can go on asking questions, but my readers will only size me up as a grouchy old man who is racist. I am grouchy, but I am not a racist. I happen to believe we are a country of laws and those who break the laws to cross the border should be held responsible. I also happen to believe that if your parents dragged your ass across the line as a child that you should be given an easier way to become a citizen, but your parents should pay the price for your good fortune. It is they who wanted you to have a better life, and they risked all they had to get it for you, now it is time for them to pay the price.

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Quang Nguyen

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-chat/2576024/posts

Thirty-five years ago if you were to tell me that I am going to stand up here speaking in English to a large group of patriots, I’d laugh at you. Every morning I wake up thanking God for putting family and me in the greatest country on earth.

I just want you all to know that the American dream does exist and I am living the American dream. I was asked to speak to you about my experience as a first generation Vietnamese American, but I rather speak to you as an American.

If you hadn’t noticed, I am not white and I feel pretty comfortable with my people.

I am a proud US citizen and here is my proof… It took me 8 years to get it, waiting in endless lines, but I got it and I am very proud of it. Guess what, I did it legally and it ain’t from the state of Hawaii.

I still remember the images of the Tet offensive in 1968. I was six years old. Now you might want to question how a 6 year old boy could remember anything. Trust me, those images can never be erased. I can’t even imagine what it was like for young American soldiers, 10,000 miles away from home, fighting on my behalf. 35 years ago, I left South Vietnam to come to America for political asylum. The war had ended. At the age of 13, I left with the understanding that I may or may not ever get to see my siblings or parents again. I was one of the first lucky 100,000 Vietnamese allowed to come to the US. Somehow, my family and I were reunited 5 months later, amazingly, in California. It was a miracle from God.

If you haven’t heard lately that this is the greatest country on earth, let me tell you, IT IS!!! It is the freedom and the opportunities presented to me that put me here with all of you tonight. I also remember the barriers that I had to overcome every step of the way. My high school counselor told me that I could not make it to college due to my poor communication skills. I proved him wrong. I finished college. You see… All you have to do is to give this little boy an opportunity and encourage him to take and run with it. Well, I took the opportunities and here I am. This person standing tonight in front of you could not exist under a socialist/communist environment. By the way, if you think socialism is the way to go, I am sure many people here will chip in to get you a one-way ticket out of here. And if you didn’t know, the only difference between socialism and communism is an AK-47 aiming at your head. That was what I knew and grew up with.

In 1983, I stood with a thousand new immigrants, reciting the pledge of allegiance and listening to the National Anthem for the first time as an American. To this day, I can’t remember anything sweeter and more patriotic than that moment in my life.

Fast forwarding, somehow I finished high school, finished college, and like any other goofball 21-year-old kid, I was having a great time with my life, I had a nice job and a nice apartment in Southern California. In someway and somehow, I had forgotten how I got here and why I am here.

One day I was at a gas station, I saw a veteran pumping gas on the other side of the island. I didn’t know what made me do it, but I walked over and asked if he had served in Vietnam. He smiled and said Yes. I shook and held his hand. His eyes started to well up. I walked away as fast as I could and at that very moment, I was emotionally rocked, this was a profound moment in life. I knew something had to change in my life. It was time for me to learn how to be a good citizen. It was time for me to give back.

You see… America is not place on the map; it isn’t a physical location. It is an ideal, a concept. And if you are an American, you must understand the concept, you must buy into this concept and most importantly, you have to fight and defend this concept. This is about Freedom… and not free stuff. And that is why I am standing up here. Brothers and sisters, to be a real American, the very least you must do is to learn English and understand it well. In my humble opinion, you cannot be a faithful patriotic citizen if you can’t speak the language of the country you live in. Take this document of 46 pages… Last I looked on the internet, there wasn’t a Vietnamese translation of the US constitution. It took me a long time to get to the point of being able to converse and until this day, I still struggle to come up with the right words. It’s not easy, but if it’s too easy, it’s not worth doing.

Before I got to know this 46-page document, I learned of the 500,000 Americans who fought for this little boy. I learned of the 58,000 names scribed on the black wall at the Vietnam War memorial. You are my heroes. You are my founders.

When I was eligible to vote, I went out and performed my civic duty. For all of you young people out there, who just turned 18, I encourage you to exercise your duty as an American to be an informed voter no matter where you are or what you do. America fought and died for your rights. DON’T LET HER DOWN!!!

At this time, I would like to ask all the Vietnam veterans to please stand. I thank you for my life. I thank you for your sacrifices, and I thank you for giving me the freedom and the liberties I have today. I now ask All veterans, firefighters, and police officers, to please stand. On behalf of all first generation immigrants, I thank you for your service and may God bless you all and may God bless America!

Democracy, You Can’t Buy It On Amazon

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I just completed a book by Condoleezza Rice titled Democracy, Stories from the Long Road to Freedom. I give it four starsMs Rice writes very well about atopic that most of us know about, or al least we think we know about, i.e. Democracy. There are many new things I learned about condo as she unfolded this narrative, like she reads and speaks Russian, has worked in the government for many years in Russian affairs, and served as Secretary of State and National Security Advisor under George W Bush. She has a Doctorate degree in Politics Science and currently teaches at Stanford University.

When she speaks on Democracy it is because she has personally worked with many countries trying to establish democrats systems. She confirmed my own thoughts regarding our policy of Nation building, I isn’t easy. Often while watching the news during the Iraq war and afterwards it always confounded me that the people in Iraq believed that once Saddam Hussein was gone that democracy would descend upon them from the heavens and life would be beautiful. It doesn’t work like that. In her book Condoleezza provides example after example of countries like Russia, Kenya, Brazil, China, and more of how leaders struggle with the concept and even more so with the implementation. If it were easy, the whole world would be living in a democracy. Maybe someday it will, but right now there isn’t a chance in hell that I will see a democratic world in my lifetime.

Another thing I learned is that Ms Rice truly believes that Democracy requires a huge Government to work. Throughout she explains that many countries fail because they do not have the necessary components in place. In my opinion there are three necessities: Executive, Judicial, and Legislative. We don’t need the huge bureaucracies that we have now. It doesn’t really matter, Condoleezza has written an insightful book with great explanations about how many countries have taken on the task, and in some cases have done so successfully. As I mentioned above her writing style kept me reading, and I thoroughly enjoyed every chapter.

This book is available on Amazon, but Democracy is not.

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Buying Nonsense, NOT

Progressives are a bunch of wimpy cry babies. They have too many things on their plate to make them a sad lot. Watch this video by George Will who explains their problems, then read the essay below on sports names. You will get the idea of what Progressives really are. If you proclaim to be one take note we aren’t buying your nonsense.

 

 

OK, Sports fans, here is an interesting take on Sport Team Names:

  No matter which side you are on in the matter of renaming the Washington Redskins, this is funny. This guy is hilarious! Here is an e-mail sent to Clarence Page of the Chicago Tribune after an article he published concerning a name change for the Washington Redskins. He is right on…
Dear Mr. Page…
  I agree with our Native American population. I am highly insulted by the racially charged name of the Washington Redskins. One might argue that to name a professional football team after Native Americans would exalt them as fine warriors, but nay, nay. We must be careful not to offend and, in the spirit of political correctness and courtesy, we must move forward.
Let’s ditch the Kansas City Chiefs, the Atlanta Braves and the Cleveland Indians. If your shorts are in a wad because of the reference the name Redskins makes to skin color, then we need to get rid of the Cleveland Browns.
The Carolina Panthers obviously were named to keep the memory of militant Blacks from the 60s alive. Gone. It’s offensive to us white folk
The New York Yankees offend the Southern population. Do you see a team named for the Confederacy? No! There is no room for any reference to that tragic war that cost this country so many young men’s lives.
I am also offended by the blatant references to the Catholic religion among our sports team names. Totally inappropriate to have the New Orleans Saints, the Los Angeles Angels or the San Diego Padres.
Then there are the team names that glorify criminals  who raped and pillaged. We are talking about the horrible Oakland Raiders, the Minnesota Vikings, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Pittsburgh Pirates!
Now, let us address those teams that clearly send the wrong message to our children. The LA Chargers promote irresponsible fighting or even spending habits. Wrong message to our children.
The New York Giants and the San Francisco Giants promote obesity, a growing childhood epidemic. Wrong message to our children.
The Cincinnati Reds promote downers/barbiturates. Wrong message to our children.
The Milwaukee Brewers. Well, that goes without saying. Wrong message to our children.
So, there you go. We need to support any legislation that comes out to rectify this travesty, because the Government will likely become involved with this issue, as they should. Just the kind of thing the do nothing Congress loves.
As a diehard Oregon State fan, my wife and I, with all of this in mind, suggest it might also make some sense to change the name of the Oregon State women’s athletic teams to something other than the ‘Beavers’ (especially when they play Southern California . Do we really want the Trojans sticking it to the Beavers???)
I always love your articles and I generally agree with them.
As for the Redskins name, I would suggest they change the name to the Foreskins to better represent their community, paying tribute to the dick heads in Congress.

Points of View

Two paintings by the same artist but with different points of view. How strikingly different they are.

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The Forgotten Man, Jon Mc Naughton

The video above was produced in 2010.

Which point of view are you? I am definitely the second.

 

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