07/23/14

Watcher’s Council Nominations – Standing With Israel Edition

The Watcher’s Council

http://oneway2day.files.wordpress.com/2013/07/bho-stands-with-israel-leans-to-pa-toon.jpg

Welcome to the Watcher’s Council, a blogging group consisting of some of the most incisive blogs in the ‘sphere and the longest running group of its kind in existence. Every week, the members nominate two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. Then we vote on the best two posts, with the results appearing on Friday morning.

Council News:

The Council In Action!!

* Bookworm over at Bookworm Room scored with this wonderful poster featured at American Thinker:

Main Image

This week, The MidKnight Review, Seraphic Secret, The Pirate’s Cove and Blazing Cat Fur earned honorable mention status with some great articles.

You can, too! Want to see your work appear on the Watcher’s Council homepage in our weekly contest listing? Didn’t get nominated by a Council member? No worries.

To bring something to my attention, simply head over to Joshuapundit and post the title and a link to the piece you want considered along with an e-mail address (which won’t be published) in the comments section no later than Monday 6 PM PST in order to be considered for our honorable mention category. Then return the favor  by creating a post on your site linking to the Watcher’s Council contest for the week when it comes out Wednesday morning.

Simple, no?

It’s a great way of exposing your best work to Watcher’s Council readers and Council members, while grabbing the increased traffic and notoriety. And how good is that, eh?

So, let’s see what we have for you this week…

Council Submissions

Honorable Mentions

Non-Council Submissions

Enjoy! And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us Twitter… ’cause we’re cool like that!

07/18/14

The Council Has Spoken!! This Weeks’ Watcher’s Council Results – 07/18/14

The Watcher’s Council

The Council has spoken, the votes have been cast and the results are in for this week’s Watcher’s Council match-up.

This week’s winning entry, Joshuapundit’s Israel’s New Challenge: Defeating The Third Intifada is a slightly different take on the current war between Israel and Hamas, and especially that it is no accident. Here’s a slice:

Israel once again finds itself fighting in Gaza.

The reason’s fairly simple. The lust for Jewish blood among a substantial number of the Arabs who identify themselves as Palestinians is simply their strongest impulse, their raison d’être. There is no peace, because one side simply wants the other dead.

There is not a single Israeli civilian or soldier in Gaza today, not since Israel removed the 8,000 Jewish residents who had lived there over 30 years from their homes and gave it to the Arabs who call themselves Palestinians as a sacrifice ‘for peace.’

The Palestinians could have built whatever kind of society they wanted in Gaza. But even before Hamas took over, Gaza’s main export to Israel was terrorism. Israel, with Egypt’s assistance, maintained a blockade on Gaza to curtail the import of heavy weapons, usually emanating from Iran that saved Israeli lives, but cost Israel deeply when it came to the ‘international community’, who always seem to have special rules when it comes to Israel defending itself. The carnage emanating from Gaza has slowed at times, but literally thousands of rockets, mortar shells and terrorist strikes have emanated from Gaza, and they’ve never ended. Israelis became used to running for shelter, especially in the south:

This latest onslaught saw over 100 rockets in 24 hours rained down on Israel, and with Hamas rejecting offers from Israel of ‘quiet for quiet’, that’s where we stand now. The Israelis have carried out a number of decisive strikes and have called up 42,000 reserves, while Hamas has launched missiles at central Israel, at Jerusalem, and at Tel Aviv, a step they had to know was going to provoke an Israeli ground response.

So what’s the story behind the story? Why is Hamas going for broke now, and what does it mean? Whether Israel realizes it or not, they are facing the Third Intifada, although how it unfolds is still developing. Of course, it doesn’t look like previous intifadas because circumstances and tactics have changed. But the end goal is the same. And the chief strategist isn’t Hamas, but Mahmoud Abbas.

Hamas has been isolated by Israel and the new Egyptian government of al-Sisi, who has declared Hamas’ parent movement the Muslim Brotherhood an illegal terrorist organization. Weapons coming in from Iran have slowed considerably, and money is tight. A sign of this was the attempt by Hamas ally Robert Serry, the supposedly neutral UN Mideast envoy to illegally funnel $20 million to Hamas in Gaza from Qatar.

The current Hamas and Fatah unity government agreement came about, mostly on Abbas’ terms, because of Hamas’ sharply reduced fortunes, while Abbas has the UN, the Obama Administration and the EU funding and backing him, even with Hamas now on his team. According to my sources, part of the negotiations also involved joint efforts towards the goal both Hamas and Fatah agree on, the destruction of Israel.


The Israelis, already outraged at the unity agreement and the West’s apparent willingness to fund a murderous terrorist group like Hamas were further energized by the kidnapping and murder of three Israeli teens by Hamas operatives, whose mutilated bodies were found shoved into a hole near Hebron. In response, the Israelis began to obliterate the Hamas infrastructure in Judea and Samaria.

But then, the subsequent murder of Arab teen Mohammed Abu Kheidr by what appear to be a trio of Jewish football hooligans suddenly presented Hamas and Fatah with a golden opportunity. It was used as a signal to launch what had already been planned. Vast riots, violence and destruction took place throughout Israel egged on by Fatah while Hamas stepped up its rocket and mortar attacks.

Hamas also had plans to join Fatah in the ground attack on Israel itself. They had a huge tunnel dug from Rafah under Israel’s border fence for a massive planned assault on Israeli communities in the south, and tried an amphibious attack on Israel’s coast. Both attacks were repulsed with heavy losses. Meanwhile, Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system and the IDF’s air strikes on Hamas’ infrastructure were even more effective than Hamas had planned on and that Israel had hoped.

Israel’s ‘peace partner’ Mahmoud Abbas has also been doing his part. Fatah has several hundred militiamen in Gaza, including members of the Palestinian Authority security forces who have their salaries paid by Western governments. They have eagerly joined in firing rockets at Israel’s civilians. Abbas has done nothing to stop them.

Abbas has several huge assets his old boss Yasser Arafat could only have dreamed about, and they’re key to understanding what’s being planned. First and foremost, in Barack Hussein Obama, Abbas has a president in the White House who loathes Israel and who sees himself as Palestine’s community organizer.

More at the link about Abbas’ strategy and how Israel can defeat it.

In our non-Council category, the winner was long tome Council favorite Daniel Greenfield, AKA Sultan Knish with A Game Changer In Gaza submitted by The Independent Sentinel. Knish writes with his usual clarity and common sense about the choices Israel faces in dealing with Palestinian terrorism.

Here are this week’s full results:

Council Winners

Non-Council Winners

See you next week! Don’t forget to tune in on Monday AM for this week’s Watcher’s Forum, as the Council and their invited guests take apart one of the provocative issues of the day and weigh in… don’t you dare miss it. And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us Twitter… ’cause we’re cool like that!

07/16/14

Watcher’s Council Nominations – Hamas Delenda Est Edition

The Watcher’s Council

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-rLCPC9L_Rb4/UoaGIgz4sOI/AAAAAAABvjM/3kMxuQqW7s4/s1600/122643_600.jpg

Hamas delenda est indeed.

One of the most ludicrous quotes out there about this situation came from Secretary of State John Kerry, slamming the Hamas response to the Egyptian brokered ceasefire attempt:

“I cannot condemn strongly enough the actions of Hamas in so brazenly firing rockets in multiple numbers in the face of a goodwill effort to offer a ceasefire, in which Egypt and Israel worked together, that the international community strongly supports.”

Kerry said that Hamas is “purposely playing politics” by continuing the rocket fire, using innocents as “human shields… against the laws of war.”

“And that is why they are a terrorist organization,” Kerry added.

So, why are you and President Obama still funding them, Mr. Secretary? And why do you want so badly to give a terrorist organization a state?

Welcome to the Watcher’s Council, a blogging group consisting of some of the most incisive blogs in the ‘sphere and the longest running group of its kind in existence. Every week, the members nominate two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. Then we vote on the best two posts, with the results appearing on Friday morning.

Council News:

The Council In Action!!

*Nice Deb’s Debra Heine scored with Holder DOJ Finally Finds A Scandal Worth Investigating – An Anti-Obama Parade Float at Breitbart.

*Yours Truly at Joshuapundit published two pieces over at the Times Of Israel, one pre-ceasefire, A Ceasefire In Gaza? A Huge Mistake and one post-ceasefire, The Ceasefire That Never Was Ends As Hamas Bombards Israel With Rockets.

This week, Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion, Blazing Cat Fur and The Pirate’s Cove earned honorable mention status with some great articles.

You can, too! Want to see your work appear on the Watcher’s Council homepage in our weekly contest listing? Didn’t get nominated by a Council member? No worries.

To bring something to my attention, simply head over to Joshuapundit and post the title and a link to the piece you want considered along with an e-mail address (which won’t be published) in the comments section no later than Monday 6 PM PST in order to be considered for our honorable mention category. Then return the favor by creating a post on your site linking to the Watcher’s Council contest for the week when it comes out Wednesday morning.

Simple, no?

It’s a great way of exposing your best work to Watcher’s Council readers and Council members, while grabbing the increased traffic and notoriety. And how good is that, eh?

So, let’s see what we have for you  this week…

Council Submissions

Honorable Mentions

Non-Council Submissions

Enjoy! And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter… ’cause we’re cool like that!

07/11/14

The Council Has Spoken!! This Weeks’ Watcher’s Council Results – 07/11/14

The Watcher’s Council


Obama’s Brownshirts: “It’s not fascism when we do it!”

The Council has spoken, the votes have been cast and the results are in for this week’s Watcher’s Council match-up.

“Nobody knows how to deal with a guy who makes up the law every day as he gets up. We’ve never confronted this before. We’ve never had a president who is so lawless.
We’ve never had a president who is so unconcerned with the Constitution. We’ve never dealt with it, so nobody knows what to do.” – Rush Limbaugh

“If those who wrote and ratified the 14th Amendment had imagined… and had anticipated huge waves of illegal immigration – is it reasonable to presume they would have wanted to provide the reward of citizenship to the children of the violators of those laws? Surely not.
– George Will

“I’ve got a pen and I’ve got a phone” – President Barack Hussein Obama on his willingness to go around congress with executive orders.

Most Americans are appalled at the chaos on our southern border. But chaos isn’t always unplanned, as this weeks’ winner The Noisy Room’s ACORN for Illegal Aliens – Meet the Southwest Key Programs reveals. Here, Noisy Room gives us the skinny on a non-profit funded by your tax dollars that is taking a leading role in President Obama’s plans to change America with de facto amnesty. Here’s a slice:

Are you curious who has been facilitating the transport of illegal alien children throughout the country? Look no more… meet La Raza connected Southwest Key Programs. This organization is the pipeline for the children into US refugee camps and homes across the nation. They provide immigrant youth shelters. It is a well-oiled machine that was set up to educate and reintegrate youth into American society. They also provide training for jobs. And baby, they are hiring.

Southwest Key Programs is funded by government and state programs. Here is an overview of what they do:

Southwest Key Programs is a national nonprofit organization providing transformative education, innovative safe shelters and alternatives to incarceration for over 200,000 youth and their families annually, while creating opportunities for their families to become self-sufficient. The inspiring youth and parents we work with are seeking the American dream: equality, education, and a higher quality of life. At Southwest Key, we simply open the doors to opportunity so they can achieve these dreams.

Southwest Key Programs ranks 5th among the Top Hispanic Nonprofits in America, employing a creative and diverse staff of over 2,200 employees. Because of Southwest Key’s work, thousands of youth have been diverted from prisons, jails, and institutions, enabling them to stay at home with their families and out of trouble. Southwest Key has reunified thousands of immigrant children with their families and provided these unaccompanied minors with 24-hour care and education. Southwest Key is one of only three nonprofits in Austin to be accredited by the Council on Accreditation, the nation’s leading human service accrediting body.

From the start, a cornerstone of all of our programs has been culturally-relevant education. Since 1999 we have refined our model by operating leading alternative schools throughout Texas, preventing hundreds of youth from dropping out of school by providing them with individualized education in a therapeutic setting. In 2009, East Austin College Prep opened at Southwest Key’s El Centro de Familia campus.

Over $8 million went into building their facility for this. This business was founded in 1987 and was made-to-order for Obama’s manufactured chaos on the border. Fast facts on Southwest Key Programs:

  • Founded: 1987
  • Legal Status: Nonprofit, charitable 501(c)(3) Social Service, Education and Community Development Organization
  • Staff: Over 2,200 nationwide
  • Programs: Southwest Key operates 68 juvenile justice and family programs, safe shelters for immigrant children, schools, and community building initiatives
  • Number Served: Over 200,000 kids and their families annually
  • Headquarters: Austin, Texas
  • Locations: Texas, California, New York, Georgia, Arizona, Wisconsin
  • FY 20013-14 Budget: $150 million
  • Funding: Grants and contracts by U.S. federal, state, and local government, foundations, and corporations; special events; private contributions
  • Social Enterprises: Southwest Key Enterprises, Southwest Key Cafe del Sol, Southwest Key Maintenance, Southwest Key Green Energy & Construction, Southwest Key Workforce Development, The Blooming Florist, Southwest Key Youth, Family, & Transportation LLC

Their specialty is reunifying illegal minors with their families. They are the underground railroad for the American invasion from the South. They are nationalistic in their connections and leadership. Heavily connected to the La Raza Roundtable, don’t be fooled by the charitable facade. This is a radical breeding ground. They are militant, Latino community organizers.

Here are their Board of Directors:

  • Victor Garza
    Board Chair, July 2004 to Present
    Retired Veterans Services
    Chair, La Raza Roundtable
    Resident of Fresno, California
  • Orlando Martinez
    Board Vice Chair, March 2007 to Present
    Founder and Senior Partner of Martinez Tjaden, LLP
    Former Commissioner of the Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice
    Former Director of Colorado’s Department of Youth Service
    Resident of Atlanta, Georgia
  • Anselmo Villarreal
    Board Treasurer, February 2012 to Present
    CEO, La Casa de Esperanza
    Resident of Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • Rosa Santis
    Board Secretary, February 2011 to Present
    President and CEO, Pedro SS Services, Inc. in East Austin
    Resident of Austin, Texas
  • David Marshall, Jr.
    Board Member, March 2014 to Present
    Management Consultant, ICF International
    National Board Member, Princeton Prize in Race Relations
    Former President of the LBJ School of Public Affairs Alumni Association
    Former Admission Officer and Coordinator of Multicultural Recruitment, Princeton University
    Resident of Washington, DC
  • Elizabeth S. Gonzales, CLTC
    Board Member, April 2011 to Present
    New York Life, Insurance Agent, New York Life Insurance Co
    Resident of Austin, Texas

The Leadership of Southwest Key Programs:

  • Dr. Juan Sanchez
    El Presidente/CEO and Founder
    Founded Southwest Key in 1987
  • Joella L. Brooks
    Chief Operations Officer
    Joined the Southwest Key Familia in 1990
  • Melody Chung
    Chief Financial Officer
    Joined the Southwest Key Familia in 1998
  • Roque Barros
    VP or Community Impact
    Joined the Southwest Key Familia in 2013
  • Veronica Delgado-Savage
    Vice President, Youth Justice Programs
    Joined the Southwest Key Familia in 1996
  • Alexia Rodriguez
    Vice President, Immigrant Youth Services/Legal Counsel
    Joined the Southwest Key Familia in 2003
  • Rachel Luna
    General Counsel
    Joined the Southwest Key Familia in 2006
  • Jennifer Nelson
    Vice President, Community Engagement
    Joined the Southwest Key Familia in 2000
  • Dr. Joe Gonzales
    Superintendent, East Austin College Prep
    Joined the Familia in 2011

They are connected to the Office of Refugee Resettlement:

About Unaccompanied Children’s Services

“Following the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) mission, which is founded on the belief that new arriving populations have inherent capabilities when given opportunities, ORR/ Division of Children Services/Unaccompanied Alien Children program provides unaccompanied alien children (UAC) with a safe and appropriate environment as well as client-focused highest quality of care to maximize the UAC’s opportunities for success both while in care, and upon discharge from the program to sponsors in the U.S. or return to home country, to assist them in becoming integrated members of our GLOBAL SOCIETY.”

It is to laugh. If their intent was the highest quality of care and safety, they have failed already and spectacularly. Their real goal is the GLOBAL SOCIETY.

As an aside, here is a map where illegal alien children are currently being housed. Thank you Weasel Zippers. I would imagine that Southwest Key Programs will transport children from these facilities to put them either with their families that are here legally or illegally, or house them in homes until their family is brought over. We are talking 10′s of millions being brought in and this organization will not only facilitate an invasion force, they will get wealthy doing it from government and state funds. I understand that Texas alone has given them over $150,000 in state monies.

More at the link.

In our non-Council category, the winner was Kevin D. WilliamsonBorn on the Fifth of July, submitted by Joshuapundit. He is fast becoming one of my favorite writers and in this tour de force he wonderfully encapsulates America’s outrage at the de facto amnesty for illegal aliens being forced on America. Do read it.

I don’t do this often, but I feel obliged this week to especially recommend the second place winner in this category, British MP Daniel Hannan’sThe Forgotten Flag of the American Revolution and What It Means, submitted by The Watcher. It’ll definitely teach you something you probably didn’t know and give you an interesting perspective on our American Revolution.

Here are this week’s full results. Only Simply Jews was unable to vote this week, but was not affected by the 2/3 vote penalty:

Council Winners

Non-Council Winners

See you next week! Don’t forget to tune in on Monday AM for this week’s Watcher’s Forum, as the Council and their invited guests take apart one of the provocative issues of the day and weigh in… don’t you dare miss it. And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us Twitter… ’cause we’re cool like that!

07/9/14

Watcher’s Council Nominations – Bordering On Insanity Edition

The Watcher’s Council

Welcome to the Watcher’s Council, a blogging group consisting of some of the most incisive blogs in the ‘sphere and the longest running group of its kind in existence. Every week, the members nominate two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. Then we vote on the best two posts, with the results appearing on Friday morning.

This week’s contest is dedicated to the men and women of the IDF…

שאלוהים מגן עליהם ולתת להם נצחון

Council News:

The Council In Action!!

* Dave ‘Hube’ Huber of The Colossus Of Rhodey scored this week with a great piece at the College Fix, REPORT: Hillary Clinton Raked In Nearly $2 Million in Campus Speaking Fees.

* And Debra Heine, our own Nice Deb, has an excellent take down of our absentee president up at Breitbart, Bad Optics No Deterrent To An Imperial President Who Refuses to Visit Border #ComeAndSeeIt.

This week, The MidKnight Review, The Pirate’s Cove and The Elder Of Ziyon earned honorable mention status with some great articles.

You can, too! Want to see your work appear on the Watcher’s Council homepage in our weekly contest listing? Didn’t get nominated by a Council member? No worries.

To bring something to my attention, simply head over to Joshuapundit and post the title and a link to the piece you want considered along with an e-mail address (which won’t be published) in the comments section no later than Monday 6 PM PST in order to be considered for our honorable mention category. Then return the favor by creating a post on your site linking to the Watcher’s Council contest for the week when it comes out Wednesday morning.

Simple, no?

It’s a great way of exposing your best work to Watcher’s Council readers and Council members, while grabbing the increased traffic and notoriety. And how good is that, eh?

So, let’s see what we have for you this week…

Council Submissions

Honorable Mentions

Non-Council Submissions

Enjoy! And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us Twitter… ’cause we’re cool like that!

07/7/14

Forum: What Are Your Reflections And Thoughts This July Fourth?

The Watcher’s Council

Every week on Monday morning, the Council and our invited guests weigh in at the Watcher’s Forum with short takes on a major issue of the day, the culture or daily living. This week’s question: What Are Your Reflections And Thoughts This July Fourth?

The Razor: I’ve been diving into Ancient Roman history, and I recognize that the Roman metaphor for America’s decline is a cliché, but sometimes the amount of material supporting it is compelling.

As for this Fourth, I don’t recall another time in my 5 decades when America was this divided. I feel that the fabric of our Republic is rent beyond repair, and what’s worse, few seem to care. Everyone is shouting at each other from behind the mental barricades erected by their ideological leaders, and anyone who dares venture into the no-man’s-land between them gets cut down. Lord knows I’ve tried, but I’ve been met with such vehemence and mindless hatred from people who should know better that it’s difficult to do anything but despair for a moment before returning to my own barricade.

Bring on the barbarians.

GrEaT sAtAn”S gIrLfRiEnD: 4 July 1776 fired off a crazy rocking rolling ride that hasn’t stopped ‘stirring things up’ on a global scale.

Advancing arrogance into an art form with a remarkable relentless risque commitment to liberty, egalitarianism, individualism, and laissez-faire values.

America differs qualitatively from all other nations, because of her unique origins, nat’l credo, historical evolution, and distinctive political and religious institutions.

Great Satan is magically especial because she was a country of immigrants and the first modern democracy.

Loud, proud and rowdy – early America forecast future stuff with a provocative lingo that still fits today. “Don’t Tread On Me!” “Liberty Or Death”, “Live Free Or Die”

Great Satan’s superiority of the American xperiment is reflected in the perception among Americans of America’s role in the world. That American foreign policy is based on moral principles is a consistent theme in the American hot diplopolititary gossip – a phenomenon recognized even by those who are skeptic of such an assessment.

This inclination to do right has been virtually unique among the nations of the world – and for this very reason – America has been totally misunderstood. How could a nation so rich, so successful actually, really be so unselfish and so caring?

Unconvincing (and either historically igno – or deceitfully dishonest – either term will do) critics cry Great Satan must have darker motives! America must be seeking imperium – to dominate everyone else, suck up all the oil, to trade and rob blind for America’s selfish purposes.

People from more grasping, less idealistic societies find it nigh impossible to accept that America honestly believes that giving everyone opportunity is the real roadmap for abundance and happiness everywhere – not merely in the magical Great Satan.

Americans honestly believe that securing other people’s freedom is actually like the best guarantee that America can keep her own.

Great Satan does not want to dominate the world. Americans want to live in peace and hope other people will too.

Great Satan will go out into the world, redress errors, stop uncool unacceptable behaviour, to first challenge, then annihilate threats to our liberty.

Creative destruction is Great Satan’s middle name. It is her natural function, for she is the one truly revolutionary country in the world for more than 2 centuries.

She does it automatically, and that is precisely why creeps and tyrants hate her guts, and are driven to attack her. An enormous advantage, despots fear her, and oppressed peoples want what she offers: freedom.

Amazingly, some suspect states, illegit leaders and some people have not yet comprehended that America’s primary intention is to preserve and keep our own land and liberty and all it’s prosperity and that America will do anything and go anywhere to make it happen.

Great Satan built the modern world.

And She knows her way around.

Bookworm Room: I always wonder, on 4th of July weekend, what my community is thinking. They put flags on their houses, attend parades, have picnics and backyard parties, and watch the fireworks. I suspect that few, if any of them, think of this as something other than a three day weekend dressed up in red, white, and blue. And perhaps, after 238 years, that’s exactly the way it should be. Freedom is a way of life, so much so that we can casually celebrate it.

My worry, of course, is that if we take our freedom so much for granted that it simply means a long weekend and a party, we are no longer sufficiently invested in it to recognize how precious it is, and to protect it accordingly. We’ve become like the wealthy woman who wears her diamond encrusted “tennis” bracelet everywhere, without thinking about its value, and then is shocked one day to discover that, while playing tennis, she actually lost it.
When we guard things too zealously, we destroy our ability to engage them. Just as a tennis bracelet that lives only in the safe is useless for the purpose (decoration and pleasure) so too do we destroy our freedom if we guard it with such zealous paranoia we can no longer enjoy its bounty and blessings. But the happy medium, of course, is to use that freedom, all the while being aware that it is a rare treasure and, while it should be enjoyed, it must be guarded as well.

So on July 4th, I enjoy the national party… and try to do everything in my power to keep the party rolling along. The alternative, I fear, is a very ugly hangover, either in the Soviet mode or as a part of the Caliphate.

Ask Marion: I wasn’t born in the United States, turned 2-years-old right after we arrived, after my parents waited 7-years for their okay to come. And they made sure we appreciated this country, knew her history and got involved; for they knew that you cannot love and honor what you don’t know or don’t miss. I get choked up and my eyes well up saying the pledge of allegiance, singing the Star Spangled Banner or while watching fireworks to patriotic music… so I’m a mess on the 4th of July weekend.

In 2013 I wrote a piece entitled the American Patriotic Season that encompasses a lot of my thoughts about the patriotic holidays from Memorial Day through Veterans Day that includes suggested activities, that was reposted by request for July 4th 2014.

Our family celebration of this patriotic holiday, as with others, has changed somewhat from my childhood through my children’s childhood, to now… but for as long as I can remember it always included watching the 1942 academy award winning movie “Yankee Doodle Dandy”, the biography of patriotic songwriter and playwright George M. Cohan starring James Cagney. When we were kids the Million Dollar Movie used to play the same movie for a week, every week, and it was always Yankee Doodle Dandy every 4th. So we always watched it several times each year. We always also attend a live fireworks show somewhere… at the ballpark after an Angels or Dodgers game, at one of the piers or Coronado Island, at a local park after a day of picnicking with friends and family, a few times at some special extravaganza, but we have never missed a year of fireworks..

In the past few years we have added recording and watching the PBS special “A Capital Fourth”: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vOTut2dTvRk We always take some time over the weekend, no matter where we are celebrating to discuss about a book someone is or has read recently relating to that era. And we always say a prayer for America and our troops at each major meal.

And if we are home, we try to attend the local parade and do something to carry forward the day’s, the weekend’s patriotic spirit through to election day and Veteran’s day. We often decide on and volunteer for a campaign or get involved in a Pac, like Carly Fiorina’s new Pac to go Head-to-Head with Dems’ ‘War On Women’ attack. There are always so many possibilities.

This year we got involved with the Murrieta border protest. Some years we volunteer to feed the homeless and/or visit the Veteran’s Hospital that weekend. Hundreds of courageous U.S. men and women planned and headed down to Mexico on a rescue mission on July 5th to demand the release of Marine Sgt. Tahmooressi. We also bought tickets earlier in the week for Beck’s late July event: “We Will Not Conform”, relating to Common Core and public education and plan to attend one of Trevor Loudon’s SoCal Events in either Corona or Santa Ana on July 12th.

Our wrap for the weekend will be to go to the theater and see Dinesh D’Souza’s America… with as much of the family as we can gather up and then head home to discuss it over a slice of flag cake followed by the readings from our grateful bowl, like we do at Thanksgiving.

Grateful Bowl: As everyone arrives for dessert, we have each of them fill out a grateful note, to be deposited in a bowl, basket or container. At this holiday it is a note about something you are grateful for related to living in America. After dessert has been served, (with the TV off), we have everyone gather within earshot and have someone draw out the slips of paper one by one and have a designated person read them aloud.

One of my favorite events was always the unveiling of the giant American Flag at the Crystal Cathedral to the tunes of John Philip Souza music at every patriotic holiday; now sadly only a memory and part of history. God bless you all… and God bless America!

JoshuaPundit: Ah, the Fourth. Where I live, I can sit on my deck, look down at the valley below and watch a dozen fireworks shows at once. The smell of cordite and powder mixed with bar-b-cue smoke and the odd whiff of adult refreshment is to me a very American aroma. It’s the smell of free men and women enjoying their leisure mixed with the odor that’s symbolic of what keeps them that way.

Our founders, brilliant men that they were recognized that the republics that had come before in history had all failed, and they did their very best to bequeath us a republic and a Constitution that would avoid the obvious pitfalls. We had an advantage going in because our American Revolution, unlike almost all of the others in history, was not classed based but based on the ideals of freedom. Our isolation by two oceans and the mostly egalitarian nature of American society also helped to preserve the republic even through the wrenching and stress of a Civil War.

Lincoln’s words from that era, that a house divided against itself cannot stand were as true then as they are today, but I think that many of our divisions are superficial and artificially created by a new element..the installation of an established political class. A big part of our division comes from those manufactured chasms in our society being exploited to keep this class in power, luxury and wealth.

At this point, it’s obvious that the majority of Americans know that something’s seriously wrong, although they might differ on what it is and who’s to blame, although even that is becoming more obvious to those who are paying attention and put country ahead of race or party. If I’m right, what’s wrong and who and what are to blame is going to become painfully obvious before too long, that misleading 17,000 Dow notwithstanding.

At that point, we’ll be able to see, I think, if what has usually happened in our history happens again, if the leadership emerges that the country needs. And I certainly don’t mean, G-d help us, Hillary Clinton or Fake-a-Hontus.

That aside, the next two elections will be crucial because they will signal exactly how we will weather the coming changes and the nature of the transition to come. History thus far has had an odd way of presenting our Beloved Republic with challenges to overcome, and thus far we have pretty much managed to have done so, to the point where that old joke about G-d watching over drunks, little children and the United States of America comes to mind.

And while many of our elites would be quite at home in Sodom and Gomorrah until the fire, brimstone and ashes started to fall from the sky and louse up the air conditioning, I think there are still enough righteous and decent Americans for the good will of the Divine Providence that our Founders decided to risk their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honor on to continue, and to carry us through.

-Selah –

Well, there you have it.

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