Grading Lawmakers?


I keep seeing laws passed as a way to grade schools on the effectiveness of it teachings.  There have been a number of arguments about this range from : the teachers will only teach for the test, and the students won’t learn anything, to how students who enroll during the year, transfers from other schools, will effect the score..  So it is really plain to see, at least in my view, that there are legit questions about the usefulness of this idea..

We like to score things.  Students by their scores, teachers by the students scores, schools by the teacher’s scores, large corporation by their Profit/Expense score, and stock prices..

For each of these groups there is a penalty for failure..  Students might not graduate, teachers might not get renewed, schools might lose funding, and CEO might be given a “Golden Parachute”.

One area we might extend this idea to is the people who write our laws, set the budgets, and generally seem to see their job not as representing the people but, thwarting the other party.

How could we do this, and to what end..

Not long ago the Florida State senate decided the play the closure game with the state budget..

A couple of years ago the U.S. Congress was wrestling with the idea of increasing the debt ceiling.  To this end they got together a group, made up of Republicans and Democrats, that was to work in unison with the President of the U.S.  The did work something out.  It passed the house, and the then Senate leader, Harry Reid, would not even put it before the Senate…  He said his not putting the bill before the full Senate was the Republicans fault..  He He..

Now, since doing these things is part of the job they got elected for would not the failure to pass budgets be considered a failure?  Like a student who does not pass his test, shouldn’t there be some kind of penalty associated with not doing their job?

Just look at how the politicians have spent so much time yammering about people’s “party loyalty”.  What was this thing about a Republican Loyalty Oath?  It was an oath of loyalty to the “party” not the   people they represent which would be all of the people in their district..  NOT JUST THE PEOPLE IN THEIR PARTY.

Just to give you an idea of what kind of thing I am ranting about, consider this..  When President Obama was running for his current job he had a seat in the Senate..  though he was out campaigning most of the time, rather then representing the people in his state..  Was it Marco Rubio who got on one of the Intelligence committees and then missed half the briefings?

When was the last time thy passed a budget, the full one and not just a budget to keep the wheels turning because they could not get a full budget worked out?

I understand they are supposed to log in for votes, though I also understand that some of their aides vote for them..  So I have an idea.

Lets help them understand what the average worker, those little people who pay their salary, has to do.  Lets give them time cards, maybe digital, that they can use to clock in on the floor..  If they miss a portion of the business day, the times the House, or Senate, is in session then, they get docked for the proportionate amount of time they missed.. and if the things such as the budget don’t pass then they can give that money back..  as they did not do their jobs..

Oh, and it should be a felony for any of their aides to cast their vote for them, if they can’t do it themselves they should get a real job.

Of course, if they ever did anything like this, they would just put an extra clause that exempted them from the law..

Whether you are a Republican, a Democrat, or even a Libertarian, if those people, in whatever district, are more interested in Party Politics then they are not representing YOU.

Thank,

That Joe Guy.

Can Hillary be trusted? NO.


I spent the years, from 74 to 84 as a Security Specialist for Air Force Security Police..  One of the things I learned there was that often times what people said about the need for security was different than what they practiced..  You would hear about Physical Security, Communications Security, and Operational Security.  (PhysSec, ComSec, OpSec)

Take one site I was assigned to in Korea, 77-78, the 6903rd SS *part of what was then know as the Air Force Security Service, or USAFSS, when dealt with Electronic Security..  The motto was “In God We Trust, All Others We Monitor”.  Sometime you would see an addendum placed behind that “only because we don’t have his frequency”.  Our site was located atop a hill on Osan AB.  There were huge antennas pointed at North Korea that picked up their communications signal..  What we were told was that “it is not what we do that is classified, it is how well we do it that is classified”.   Even they guy from base Civil Engineers, who fixed the A/C at the site, had to have a TS clearance.

Here is where I will tell you about how requirement are often different than reality..  All of the doors of the builder were to be secured, which an electronic lock on the front door..  Anytime a door was opened the Security Detail was supposed to be notified of its opening, and closing.  If the roving patrol, on foot, found a door open he would check with the gate, who is the one the people opening the door were supposed to notify so that he could tell the patrol..  Sometimes the Civilian contractors would want to take a break, or just step outside for a few minutes, and so would call the gate…  sometime they would forget to lock up when they went back in.. and the patrol would do it..  If it was a case where the gate had not been notified the gate guard would put it in the blotter report, call up the base security patrol and let them know there was an unauthorized door opening.  Since the site was considered to be a Priority A security site they would have to up channel  a “Helping Hand” report to indicate a possible hostile action..  In this case both Pacific Air Force Command, PacAF, and Air Force Security Service USAFSS at Kelly AFB in Texas would be notified…  they had something like 5 minutes from the time of the report to make notifications, then we would have 30 minutes to determine if it was hostile..  So we had 30 minutes to declare the security status..  if it was not hostile we would downgrade to normal, if it was undetermined after that time it was an automatic upgrade to “Covered Wagon”, or possible or actual hostile actions, at which time there would be a base wide alert as security responded to get a better look.

The Reality was that our biggest problem was with the Civilian contractors who ignored our requirement for security, and a Squadron Commander who did not want to make trouble for the contractors..  so we had orders to just put a note in the blotter, and NOT NOTIFY base security control..  This was because there had been a number of time that the base had been up on alert due to some contractor who could not be bothered to let use know when they opened a door, or even lock it up after themselves..  This was only fixed a couple of months before I left when a new squadron commander decided to take this seriously, and I went from one group of contractors to another and pointed out that we would be doing paperwork on these events, and pressing charges..  I also reminded the that the sign on the fence said they could be there “only by permission of installation commander”, which in this case was the Squadron Commander.  So, if he declared they were security risk he could bar them from the site, which meant they were of no use to whichever organization had hired them.

When I was stationed at MacDill AFB in Tampa there was a report of a brush fire near the Rapid Deployment Task Force HQ building..  When some of our people got there, along with the Fire Department, they found a 55 gallon oil drum that was on fire.  While looking at it the patrols found that it was full of documents, and that some of the burning papers had scattered in the brush, which started the fire.  What they found was that many of the papers had.  It seems that the shredders at RDJTF had broken down, as well as their furnace, so the had dispatched a crew out to burn said document in the barrel.  They had just started the burn and left.

Yes, even in security environments there are lapses, though most of them are unintentional, such as forgetting to lock up a safe for the night, or even forgetting to check a desk drawer when the desk is replaced..  These thing happen.

In the time when Bill Clinton was president there were reports of White House staffers getting waivers for drug testing, something that was required due to their access to classified material..

I am not surprised that Hillary Clinton was one of those people who could not grasp the idea that security has to be taken seriously, or it is worthless..  If you wanted to ever see what class of people the Clintons are just consider the amount of damage, and theft, that was traced back to the staffers as they left the White House..

It is easy to see how, given their backgrounds in shady dealings, that they might not believe that security was that important..  after all look at how she failed to protect the four people who were killed in Libya.  As Secretary of State she was their boss and had a responsibility to them, which she failed to fulfill.

There might not have been a law saying that she had to use the State Department servers for her email but, they had trained IT people who would have been able, at the least, to increase the level of  the servers security to a level not normally found in a bathroom…

This makes me wonder..  who did her IT security?  The plumber?

No… I don’t trust her, and given her history I fail to understand how anyone could.

Thank,

That Joe Guy.

Bourne again Bergdahl?


I recently, just found it tonight, received a suggestion from a friend that I do an blog entry based on an e-mail that he got from Vern Buchanan..  Well here it is.  Thanks Richard.

I have been reading, though I had not paid a great deal of attention to it, about the missing Sgt. Bergdahl.  When I first remember hearing about him was when there was a bunch of articles where it was said that his disappearance caused the death of a number of troops who were looking for him.  There were reports that ranged from him being kidnapped off of his post to the idea that he had defected..

I could not see him being kidnapped off of any kind of military post, but then again, given some of the things that have come out since, I might see where he might have defected but, I don’t really know either way.

There are a few things I have read, with interest, that point more to the idea that he was not kidnapped.

The Washington Post published a story relating statements he had made to them , that were used in a podcast called “Serial”, in which he said he was like Jason Bourne and that he intended to prove this by gathering information on the Taliban..  He also wanted to get the attention of his superiors, which he did, so that he could air grievances about his unit and the command structure.

“What I was seeing from my first unit all the way up into Afghanistan, all’s I was seeing was basically leadership failure, to the point that the lives of the guys standing next to me were literally from what I could see in danger of something seriously going wrong and somebody being killed,” Bergdahl said in the podcast.

It seems to me that HE was what went seriously wrong…  He keeps getting refereed to as Sgt. Bergdahl but he was only a Pfc when he went missing, and the next couple of promotions were automatic based on time rather than earned promotion.  I am not up on how the Army promotes it’s people but, I do know that when I got promoted to E-5 SSgt in the Air Force it was after I had to test for the promotion.  The only automatic ranks I got were up to E-4, at that time we had E-4 Senior Airman, not an NCO, and after a  year I got to be an E-4 Sgt.  I understand they did away with the SGT rank in the 90s and now, last I heard, just have the SrA position..  What I see here is he seems to have gotten promoted for Stupidity.

In a letter to his father Bowe indicates that there will be some packages coming to him him soon.  In another part of that same report they tell that Bowe had sent his laptop, and a few other possessions, which might have indicated that he was planning to leave soon.  He had also written, to his father that he was “ashamed to be an american”.

One of the most interesting items I noticed is a wikipedia entry about Bowe Bergdahl and his background.  I see he was in the United States Coast Guard for 26 days before he got an “uncharacterized discharge” which would equate of the “failure to adapt” statement they used to use when people flunked out of Air Force basic training..  It might have applied, in the 70s, to the person just not being able to get with the program, or being gay.

Given the circumstances I would say that the DoD person who stated that he had served with “honor and distinction” is a NITWIT, and is a typical member of the Obama administration.

While I don’t think much of the President’s dealing with terrorist, I think that what Bowe Bergdahl needs now, more so than the recriminations about how many people died looking for him, if any really did, is a stay in a mental health facility.  He obviously had some problems with reality.

 

Thanks,

That Joe Guy.

 

 

 

A new TV Show for Donald.. Let’s Play Concentration..


At some point the contestant will be given a chance of guess at the meaning of either a picture, or symbols that make up a message..

In this case the final solution is:

Work will set you free.
Work will set you free.

Maybe Donald Trump is trying to send a different message when he says we should put people in camps.  We put criminals in prisons.  We put people who illegally cross our borders, if the administration obeys the law, in detention until we can deport them.  This is all assuming that President Obama is not making up laws as he goes along.

After Pearl Harbor, when people realized how many Japanese there were in this country, we rounded up what would seem to be most of those on the Pacific coast and put them in camps for the duration.  Now just think how they thought about it.  Many of them had served in the U. S. military in WWI.  A number of them had American families, owned property, which a lot of them lost through confiscation, but for most of them their only crime was having been born to Japanese parents.

Going back in history from there, and over to Europe, we find the Germans setting up camps for those people they did not want to muddy up the Uber Race.  At first it might have just been the Jews but, the Jews weren’t the only ones.  There were, besides the Jews, communist, gypsies, homosexuals, Jehovah’s Witnesses, social democrats, habitual offenders, and other people who were considered lesser beings.

I am not saying that Donald Trump wants to exterminate anyone but, I will point out that while Hitler had an antisemitic point of view this view did not materialize into the “Final Solution” until about 1941, at about the time they attacked their former allies the Russians.

I will say this : the old adage about those who forget history being doomed to repeat it has some bearing.

The Untied States has never been a perfect nation.  It has done some things that were terrible..  Just ask Native Americans about the “Trail of Tears” along which the United States government forced several tribes of Native Americans, including the Cherokees, Seminoles, Chickasaws, Choctaws, and Creeks, to migrate to reservations west of the Mississippi River in the 1820s, 1830s, and 1840s. (Part of the above is a direct quote from Dictionary.com)

Think of Col. Custer from Little Big Horn who was killed, along with the 7th Cavalry when they began and attack on what they believe was small Indian village..  How the battle of Little Big Horn was won.  This is the story told from the perspective of the Native Americans who fought it.

Yes, this country, as it grew, did terrible things to the Native American but, we have grown since then.  While it is history we have learned the lessons and should not repeat them.

As a nation we like to believe that we stand with the oppressed.  We have defended Europe for years against the expansion of the soviets.  We have moved against terror, and we are in a war with terrorist..

We have principles that should not be considered as matters of convenience.

Our laws must be held firm, and not ignored.  The way we deal with people who violate us, or our laws, shows what kind of people we are.  When President Bush decided that the War on Terror meant they could implement torture his rational was that United States law did not apply out of the country.  I submit that the Uniform Code of Military Justice, a law passed by congress and signed by a president, which is a code of conduct for all Armed Forces, applies to our troops worldwide.

We might be at war with terrorist but, that does not mean we have to be terrorist ourselves, so Mr. Donald Trump..  The road to the gate pictured above has been traveled before, and we DO NOT want to go there.  Let us treat others by the way they act, and not because of who they are.

Radicals of any stripe can say stupid things.  That includes people like the Westboro Baptist Church, the Ku Klux Klan, and any other lunatic fringe group that preaches hate… and YOU, Donald Trump.  This is not the kind of conduct we want the leader of our nation to espouse.

In closing I would have to say “Here Mr. Trump is you sign”.

 

Thanks,

That Joe Guy.

 

 

 

 

The Enemy of my Enemy?


There is an old saying “The Enemy of my Enemy is my Friend”.  That kind of logic lead us to become allies with the old Soviet Union, USSR, or as they really are, the Russians.  Yes, we were allies with the Russians, even while we were sentencing the Rosenberg to death for giving Nuclear secrets to out allies?  In the 80s, a period when I was stationed at Hahn AB in Germany, we may have been facing off with the Russians from across the Iron Curtain, but when it cam to shopping in the Main BX in Berlin?  Yes..  The Evil Empire was allowed to shop at the big commissary in Berlin.  Why?  Because they were our allies..

People thought it was strange that we could be about to go to war with the Russians, and yet we would let them onto our bases so they could shop?

So, what does this have to do with our old saying?  “The Enemy of my Enemy is my Friend”?  Because in 1941 the German government turned on their one time ally, the Germans had been allies of the Russian long enough to divide up a good hunk of eastern Europe, and so when we got into the war a few months later it was “The Enemy of my Enemy” is that out enemy was Germany, and the Russians, since their betrayal by  the Germans, were therefor our friends..

Over the ensuing years we would often come to near war with the big bear many times in an effort to prevent the Evil Empire from spreading across the world like a giant fungus.  We would be involved in proxy wars, think Korea and Vietmam, in an effort to keep the Bear contained.

For the most part we were successful, though we did lose Vietnam, and sometime there were unintended consequences.  A good example of that was when Iran revolted against the Shah and the country was taken over by the west hating clerics, who started calling the United States the Great Satan.  It wasn’t that we had any great dislike for the Iranian people we had just seen the Big Bear as the greater threat, and so we had, in an effort to counter their influence in the middle east, supported another dictator..  It might have been many years ago to us but they remember it.  That and our support of Saddam Hussein in later years.

These proxy wars also had other effects.  For a prime example I give you Israel.  Yes we have supported Israel since about 1948 when an American officer, Col. Micky Marcus, was recruited to become Israel’s first modern General(aluf).  Though he died in the conflict he was able to help Israel survive it’s first war with the neighboring countries who did not want a Jewish state so near their borders.  The interesting, at least to me, effect was that over the years, and several wars, Israel used mostly American weapons system against weapon system supplied by the USSR to those same neighboring countries.  We were also able to get our hands on a number of these weapon system that were captured by the Israeli Defense Forces, which allowed the United State to further analyse how they worked..

When it comes to the Middle East the thought comes to mind that while the United States and NATO have been looking at the “Big Picture” people like the new rulers, new in 1979, of Iran were only thinking about their small picture..  and like Castro, who spent many years in power telling his people that the United States was on the verge of taking over Cuba and how it was through his strength that the United States was continually defeated, or how Kim Sung did the same for North Korea…  The rulers in Iran have been telling the world how the United States was getting ready to invade their county.

At one point, when the United States had crushed the Taliban in Afghanistan and Saddam in Iraq, we had Iran surrounded.  That would have been the time to crush the largest supporter of terrorism of the time..  Iran.  The country that supplied money and weapon to Syria, which then got into the hands of the Hammas and other terrorist groups.   One thing that we must remember is that this groups, the people in the Gaza area who keep telling us they are the victims of Israel, came from the PLO under Yasser Arafat.  A group that blew up civilian aircraft, hijacked them, hijacked ship, and killed hostages.

Once we even supported Iraq, during their 7, or 8, year war with Iran.  The Iranians probably remember how we had many of the tanker that transit the Persian Gulf flagged with U.S. flags, and we sank a number of the Iranian ships that attacked these reflaged ships..  This was not because we thought Saddam was such a great guy, after all we had 2 wars with him since then and threw him out of power on the last one, it was so that the Iranians could not put a damper on the flow of oil by sinking the Iraqi flagged ships.

The point I was working my way to, by the scenic route, was that now, with the Paris attacks, the Russians have decided to use the attacks as an excuse for having a legitimate reason to send troops.

Since the civil war started in Syria there were attacks using poison gas.  Obama threatened Assad and said that if he did not stop the attacks on the rebels, that he would bomb them.  The Hesitant President took his time making a decision, and by the time he did it was discovered that it was the rebels who had been using gas, not the government..  Then ISIS, or ISIL, or whatever name they are called, got into the mix.  In an effort to stop ISIS the United States, Obama, decided to help the groups that were also fighting the Syrian government…

Then Syria started to get rather crowded with the influx of Iranians, Russians and Cubans..  We have people in with the rebels, so it is possible, since the Russians were trying to keep Assad in power, the our troops could come under fire from the Russians.  As an aside, it is interesting to not that just a few days after President Obama moved to normalize relations with Cuba they would send troops to Syria in support of the Russians.

It is no secret that the Russian would want a Mediterranean port so they could project their sea-power into the Med.  Well, supporting Assad is one way of doing that.  If they go after ISIS that will give them an excuse, as an Ally, to go into Iraq, which brings me to my point.  Looking back at World War II the Russian army took up half of Germany.  The result was a divided Germany that lasted almost 50 years until the collapse of the USSR.  Once the Russians get control of a country they do not like to give it up….  Just look at their efforts to seize control of, in recent years, Georgia and the Ukraine.

So my question is : If the Russians are the enemy of our enemy(ISIS) does that really make them good guys, and how can we be sure of getting them out of there once it is over?  It doesn’t.  They are still up to their old tricks.  Take the Russian bomber that was shot down by the Turks.  The Turkish government says that the plane kept over flying Turkish territory, the Russian say it did not.  I tend to side with the Turks.  In the 70s, when I was in the U.S. Air Force I talked to a number of pilots who had flown alert duty, during the cold war, on the eastern coast of the U.S. who told how they would have to usher Russian recon aircraft out from U.S. territory.  Sometimes while they were still flying OVER dry land.  We could have shot them down for being there as the type of aircraft they used, called the Bear by NATO, was a converted strategic bomber.

So, while it might be nice to think that the Russian are just helping get rid of this terrorist threat can we really be sure that they aren’t just using this as an excuse to do a little land grabbing?

Thanks,

That Joe Guy.