Monday, March 22, 2010

Stupak Blagoes His Vote


In the words of former baseball broadcasting legend Jack Buck: "I don't believe what I just saw!"

After watching the fiasco that took place, yesterday in the sacred house chambers, I am proposing today that we, as a nation, change the term "Representatives" to "Individualists."

As the feds prepare their case to throw former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich in jail, on charges that he schemed to sell or trade the Senate seat once held by President Obama, as well as, used his power to illegally pressure political campaign donors ... many Democrats from Bart Stupak all the way up to (and including) Obama have in essence committed the same crime.

The list of those confirmed to have made some sort of "deal" to sell their yes vote to Obamacare continues to grow. Here is just a sampling:

Ben Nelson, NE
Mary Landrieu, LA
Bart Stupak, MI
Gary Peters, MI
Allen Boyd, FL
Suzanne Kosmas, FL
John Boccieri, OH
Peter DeFazio, OR

Here in Michigan, I have made it my mission throughout the remainder of 2010, to donate much time and money toward securing the defeat of Bart Stupak. I urge others, both here and across this country, to do the same.

To those interested, Dan Benishek will be running against Stupak this November. You can contact his campaign directly at:

Benishek for Congress
802 Pentoga Trail
Crystal Falls, MI 49920
Phone: 906 265-0272

Monday, July 6, 2009


They have not only attacked her personally; they have attacked her husband, her children, her values, and her beliefs with far more slings and arrows than any political figure has ever had to endure. Yet through it all, she remains above the fray in representing the heart and soul of the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave.

"They" include the mainstream media, the left (I know that's being redundant), and even some within her own party. "They" sense a unifying force; "They" see a renewed hope; "They" hear inspiration; and so "They" feel threatened!

"They" include:
Andrew Halcro - who lost the 2006 gubernatorial race to her: "If she is thinking that leaving her term 16 months early is going to help her prepare to maybe go on to bigger and better things on the political stage, I think she's sadly mistaken. You just can't quit."

Larry Sabato - Director of the University of Virginia Center for Politics: "I think it eliminates her from serious consideration for the presidency in 2012."

John Weaver - former senior strategist for John McCain's presidential bid: "If this is her launching pad for 2012, it's a curious move. She has no real accomplishments as governor."

Phillip Elliot - Associated Press: "Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's abrupt and unscripted holiday resignation is an odd way to launch a potential presidential bid and certainly no help for a party battered by scandal and fighting for relevancy."

The New York Times - A liberal rag: "We can't get over how she convinces a general election audience how quitting on her constituents is a good thing."

The Daily Kos - A Radical Web Site & unOrganization: "You have proven yourself an able contortionist, twisting circumstances to your convenience and naively believing that your self-serving yelps of success will drown out the shocking volume of your ineptitude."

The Huffington Post - An Internet Newspaper: "Palin's vision of politics is so profoundly radical that even performing the duties of office becomes unimportant."

Bill Maher HBO Political Host and former comedian: “She’s nothing more than a Retarded Flight Attendant.”

ABC News - Obama's State Run Television News Bureau: "If she thinks she’s had it so tough … two words … ‘Hillary Clinton’. Mrs. Clinton has been savaged with nasty criticism.”

To all of those listed above, as well as to the far too many more of you to list, I offer this shiny most recently released State Quarter and advise you to:


Where was all the scrutiny, not to mention the on-going vicious personal attacks, on Hillary Clinton? And we're not talking about her (in the words of country singer Patty Lovelace): lying, cheating, cold dead beating, two timing double dealing, mean, mistreating husband.

Mrs. Clinton, with no experience as a politician other than being married to one, ran a popularity contest for Senator of the very "blue" State of New York ... and wins. In her eight years as Senator the majority of her time was spent laying the blueprint and planning her run at the Presidency of the United States. Her entire second term was spent, largely, on the road in setting up her campaign strategies, personnel, offices, support, etc.

For her entire last two years as Senator, Mrs. Clinton devoted 99% of her time to becoming President, with no serious dedication to the tax payers of New York who paid her salary.

Sarah Palin was no longer going to allow the false accusations and attacks, as well as her future political aspirations and travel, hurt the state and people she loved. Sarah Palin truly cares about the State of Alaska, its citizens, and its future. As much as she cares about the United States of America.

With Hillary Clinton it was all about her, the Democrat Party, and most importantly power. With Sarah Palin it is absolutely about practicing what she preached (as she did throughout her brief run for the Vice Presidency): "Country First."

As radio talkshow host Rush Limbaugh commented over the weekend: "When you have so many establishment types; inside the Beltway elites and media, be it Republican, Democrat ... it doesn’t matter, just so eager to destroy this woman ... it means they’re still scared to death of her."

And rightly so.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009


A recent news article I read told the story of how in March 2006, a group of soldiers (from the 101st Airborne Division) with their faces concealed and wearing black long underwear, descended upon a farmhouse some 20 miles south of Baghdad. Once inside they gang-raped a teenage girl, shot her in the head, then killed her younger sister and their parents as well. The soldiers then tried to burn the bodies by setting fire to the house. One of the soldiers was recently convicted of the crime and could face the death penalty for his actions.

Unfortunately, many reading this same news account will wrongly assume that this is a common occurrence during warfare. Nothing could be further from the truth!

As a United States Army Chaplain, I served in Iraq from 2006 through 2007 during the time of extreme IED (Improvised Explosive Device) activity throughout the Al Anbar region. Enemy activity was at its zenith. There were over 160 attacks, per month, on U.S. soldiers.

One night, I was approached by my executive officer and was asked if I would fIy, by helicopter, to one of the Army outposts near the Syrian border to minster to a unit which had just lost two of their men in a firefight with the enemy.

Early the next morning I boarded a Navy Sea Stallion chopper and arrived at the outpost. I was greeted by the commanding officer and was given the details of the horrific battle that occurred the day before.

I was asked to minister to four men who survived the encounter. These men were no strangers to warfare. They had been in Iraq before and the sights, smells, and sounds of battle were commonplace.

All of the men were deeply grieving the loss of their friends and questioning why they had survived while their friends had died. In particular, the platoon sergeant of this unit, was having a most difficult time processing the death of these two soldiers. I came to discover that one of the slain soldiers was a very close personal friend of this platoon sergeant.

I also learned that, once the firefight had ended, he was part of the team that had captured the aforementioned insurgents who had inflicted the mortal wounds upon their friends.

The platoon sergeant told me: “Chaplain, I had those two guys on the ground and my weapon was pointed at the back of their heads. For just a moment, I saw the face of my friend and the faces of the wife and children he left behind. Part of me wanted to pull the trigger and end the miserable existence of these two bastards and yet another part of me knew that such actions were wrong.”

After listening to him relate the awful events of that day, I told him that he had done the right thing and that his honor was still intact. This soldier could hold his head high knowing that he had acted morally.

This is not an isolated incident. Our combat forces face these kinds of moral dilemmas daily. I can attest to you the truth that the vast majority of our servicemen make the right choices and perform their duties with distinction, valor, and character.

I am so very proud to serve with troops like these.

This Blog Post provided by: Chaplain (MAJ) Daniel Petsch

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

The Day The Music Died - 50 Years Ago

In the early hours of February 3, 1959, a Beechcraft Bonanza aircraft carrying Buddy Holly, along with, The Big Bopper (J.P. Richardson), and Ritchie Valens, who had all been performing at the Surf Ballroom in Clear Lake, Iowa, took off from the local runway in nearby Mason City, on its way to the next show. The plane crashed soon after takeoff, killing all aboard.

This event was later eulogized by folk singer Don McLean in his famous song, "American Pie", in which the death of these '50s icons serves as a metaphor for greater changes within American society as a whole.

What most people may not know is that country music legend Waylon Jennings' act of kindness that fateful night, saved his life.

"The Winter Dance Party" was a tour that was set to cover 24 midwestern cities in three weeks. A logistical problem with the tour was the amount of travel, as the distance between venues was not a priority when scheduling each performance. For example, the tour would start at venue A, travel 200 miles to venue B, and travel back 170 miles to venue C, which was only 30 miles from the original venue A. Adding to the disarray, the tour bus used to carry the musicians was ill-prepared for the weather (its heating system broke shortly after the tour began).

Drummer Carl Bunch developed a severe case of frostbitten feet while on the bus and was taken to a local hospital. As he recovered, Buddy Holly and Ritchie Valens took turns with the drums.

The Surf Ballroom in Clear City, Iowa was never intended to be a stop on the tour, but promoters, hoping to fill an open date, called the manager of the ballroom at the time and offered him the show. He accepted and the date of the show was set for February 2nd.

By the time Buddy Holly arrived at the ballroom that evening, he was frustrated with the tour bus and told his bandmates that, once the show was over, they should try to charter a plane to get to the next stop on the tour, in Moorhead, Minnesota. According to those close to the tour, Holly was also upset that he had run out of clean undershirts, socks, and underwear. He needed to do some laundry before the next performance, and the local laundromat in Clear Lake was closed that day.

Flight arrangements were made with Roger Peterson, 21, a local pilot who worked for Dwyer Flying Service in Mason City, Iowa. A fee of $36 per person was charged for the single engine Beechcraft Bonanza B35 (Registration N3794N). The Bonanza could seat three passengers in addition to the pilot.

Richardson had developed a case of the flu during the tour and asked one of Holly's new bandmates, Waylon Jennings, for his seat on the plane. Jennings, feeling sorry for the Big Bopper, kindly agreed to give up the seat. When Holly learned that Jennings wasn't going to fly, he said, "Well, I hope your ol' bus freezes up." Jennings responded, "Well, I hope your ol' plane crashes." This exchange of words, though made in jest at the time, haunted Jennings for the rest of his life.

Ritchie Valens had never flown in a small plane before, and asked Holly's remaining bandmate on the plane, Tommy Allsup, for the seat. Tommy said "I'll flip ya for the remaining seat." Contrary to what is seen in biographical movies, that coin toss did not happen at the airport shortly before takeoff, nor did Buddy Holly toss it. The toss happened at the ballroom shortly before departure to the airport, and the coin was tossed by a Allsup near the rear entrance to the hall. Needless to say Valens won a seat on the plane.

Dion DiMucci of Dion & The Belmonts, who was the fourth headline performer on the tour, was approached to join the flight as well; however, the price of $36 was too much. Dion had heard his parents argue for years over the $36 rent for their apartment and could not bring himself to pay an entire month's rent for a short plane ride.

The plane crashed at 1:06 a.m. Central Time on February 3, shortly after it took off from Mason City Municipal Airport. Around 1:05 a.m., Jerry Dwyer, the owner of Dwyer Flying Service, could see the lights of the plane start to descend from the sky to the ground. At the time, he thought it was an optical illusion because of the curvature of the Earth and the horizon.

The pilot, Roger Peterson, was expected to file his flight plan once the plane was airborne, but Peterson never called the tower. Repeated attempts by Dwyer to contact his pilot failed. By 3:30 AM, when the airport at Fargo had not heard from Peterson, Dwyer contacted authorities and reported the aircraft missing.

Around 9:15 a.m., that morning, Dwyer took off in another small plane to fly Peterson's intended route. A short time later Dwyer spotted the wreckage in a cornfield belonging to Albert Juhl, about 5 miles northwest of the airport. The manager of the Surf Ballroom, who drove the performers to the airport and witnessed the plane taking off, made the positive identification of the performers.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

George W. Bush - Thank You!!!

Dear President Bush,

Thank you for all you have done to preserve, protect, and defend me, my family, and my fellow countrymen from terrorism.

It has been over seven years since we were attacked and three thousand of my fellow Americans were killed. I am truly grateful for the way you have handled one of the most profound crises my country has ever faced. As commander-in-chief, I could not have felt more secure with anyone other than you at the helm.

The events of September 11, 2001 changed the face of America forever. Immediate decisions had to be made, addressing every aspect of securing our land and its people. It's beyond shame that hardly anyone has ever given you the credit deserved for having to have made those incredibly difficult decisions.

You have somehow endured the slings and arrows of the mainstream media, along with, many of those that swallowed their propaganda. All the while as you led the way on national progress, not for ideology, fame, or votes. You found compromises that would move the nation in constant step with our Constitution - which is exactly how it should be done in a democracy. You did not play dictator and force everyone to conform. You were a man of faith and always of your word.

I will miss your wisdom, and your conviction of faith, which will be all the more painful given all the reminders of those that now surround us and lead the national debates.

Thank you for being a man of integrity and an inspirational leader. America is safe because of you. May God bless you and Laura.

Jimmy Lewis
St. Clair Shores, Michigan

Monday, January 12, 2009

You Know You’re From Michigan If …

  1. You consider it a sport to gather your food by drilling through 18 inches of ice then sitting there all day hoping that the food will swim by.
  2. Your local Dairy Queen is closed from November through March.
  3. You have worn shorts and a coat at the same time.
  4. Your town has an equal number of bars and churches.
  5. 'Vacation' means going up north on I-75.
  6. You measure distance in hours.
  7. You know several people who have hit a deer more than once.
  8. You often switch from 'heat' to 'A/C' in the same day.
  9. You can drive 55 mph through a foot of snow, during a raging blizzard, without flinching.
  10. You see people wearing camouflage at social events (including weddings).
  11. You install security lights on your house and garage and leave both unlocked.
  12. You carry jumper cables in your car and your wife knows how to use them.
  13. You design your kid's Halloween costume to fit over a snowsuit.
  14. Driving is better in the winter because the potholes are filled with snow.
  15. You know the 4 seasons as: almost winter, winter, almost spring, and road construction.
  16. Your idea of creative landscaping is a statue of a deer next to your blue spruce and birch.
  17. You were unaware that there is a legal drinking age.
  18. Down south means Ohio.
  19. A brat is something you eat.
  20. You go out to a fish fry every Friday.
  21. Your 4th of July picnic was once moved indoors due to frost.
  22. You have more miles on your snowmobile than your car.
  23. You find 0 degrees 'just a little chilly.'
  24. You drink pop and bake with soda.
  25. Your doctor tells you to drink Vernors and you know it's not medicine.
  26. You can actually drink Vernors without coughing.
  27. You know what a Yooper is.
  28. You know that UP is a place, not a direction.
  29. You know it's possible to live in a thumb.
  30. Your neighbor throws a party to celebrate his new pole barn.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Senator Retract - Harry Reid

I decided to take a break, over the long Christmas holidays, from all social and political commentary. Although the new year brings with it much hope and transformation (I know you all can't wait for the 'change'), I am not surprised, as I return to the world of news and blogging, to find the same old Harry Reid at it again.

Just two days after Harry Reid proclaimed to the world that "His" senate would never ever sit Illinois Senate designate Roland Burris, Reid pulled an about face by actually allowing Burris inside the sacred front door of the United States Senate chamber.

Harry Reid has totally caved. Dick Durbin has totally caved. On Sunday and Monday of this week they were clearly stating that the Senate and only the Senate will determine a solution, and further more, that they were not seating him. Ah ha ... and then something strange happened on Tuesday.

People began to focus on the racial aspects. The press strategically photographed Burris as this poor, bedraggled black guy surrounded by attorneys, barred from the U.S. Senate, an all-white men's club, and then giving the appearance they forced him out into the rain.

You add to that the situation with the secretary of state in Illinois, Jesse White, who said: "I'm not signing this, I'm not signing the paper necessary to make this happen," then you really do have a problem.

So what does Reid do, amongst the mounting pressure, he retracts his statement by saying: "We have nothing to do with this. This is all about the secretary of state of Illinois. The secretary of state of Illinois has to sign the certification form here." So Reid is pretending that he never, ever said anything about not letting Burris into the building or even sitting him for that matter.

Are you surprised? You shouldn't be, but in case you are, let me remind you of some of Reid's top retractions:

Just recently Senator Retract stated that "I don't work for Obama," and added "Democrats must be “very, very careful” to avoid overreaching and will not rubber-stamp President-elect Obama’s policies." He later retracted by saying he didn't work for and with Obama until the 20th of January.

And what about the long running State of Minnesota Senate Side Show (Al Franken v. Norm Coleman)?

"Coleman will never ever (there's those words again) serve," stated Reid in arguing that Norm Coleman’s career in the Senate is finished. “Norm Coleman will never ever serve [again] in the Senate. He lost the election. He can stall things, but he'll never serve in the Senate.” These statements have been made in light of the growing facts that there is substantial evidence of voter fraud and a lawsuit pending.

Reid has fretted over how fossil fuels like coal 'makes us sick.' Never mind that life expectancy, largely, fueled by industrialization and its accompanying higher living standards, continues to climb. In each case, the consequences to Reid's political career have apparently been minimal.

And who can forget this past fall when Reid said that visitors to the Capitol "stink!"

"My staff tells me not to say this, but I'm going to say it anyway," said Reid in his remarks. "In the summer because of the heat and high humidity, you could literally smell the tourists coming into the Capitol. It may be descriptive but it's true."

Recently, Senator Retract announced that a 'major insurance company' is on the verge of bankruptcy. His comments caused life insurance stocks to plummet. For example, MetLife (NYSE: MET) fell by more than 15% and Hartford Financial Services (NYSE: HIG) fell by approximately 35%. He retracted his statement by claiming he had been led to believe that, under the current financial climate, it could happen soon, but that he was not actually aware of any company being in danger of bankruptcy.

And the hits just keep on coming ...

Remember when he attacked our troops and General Petraeus, telling them they can't win and that the war is lost? He retracted those statements by stating he meant that if the Bush policies continued as they were. Hmmmm, didn't the President's policies include the successful surge in Iraq? And now Senator Retract tries to make himself out to be a super patriot. It's not flying, Senator.

And let's not forget these other two things about Senator Retract, when he told schoolchildren in Nevada that George Bush, the commander-in-chief, was a loser. Then he essentially called Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas illiterate. He was asked what he thought about Thomas, and replied: "He's not very good; his opinions don't make any sense; they're not written very well,"

Then there was that infamous Senator Retract statement during the height of the debate on Illegal Aliens. "We will hopefully bring to final passage a comprehensive bill that will strengthen our border security and bring 12 million undocumented Americans out of the shadows." Undocumented Americans, are you kidding me?

Senator Harry Reid, majority leader of the United State Senate, is actually the head of a party which cannot survive on the basis of its ideas. Liberalism cannot triumph openly in the arena of ideas. It can only triumph by destroying, via character assassination and other things, its opponents. They don't dare come join us in the arena of ideas for open debate on issues. And if they do, it will soon descend into personal assaults and attacks.

That is of course until they retract those assaults and attacks.