Wednesday, October 30, 2013
This probably isn’t a big deal, but it caused me pause.
New FBI Agents are required, as part of their training, to visit the Martin Luther King Memorial.
A couple of years back the New Agents were required to visit the Holocaust Museum. I can sort of understand the Holocaust Museum. The young academics entering federal law enforcement, lacking what one might consider a rounded education or worldly experience, may very well find it helpful to know that the world actually does contain unspeakable evil.
Now I agree that Martin Luther King accomplished much regarding necessary changes in past social injustice. I would even be prepared to acknowledge that Martin Luther King was a great and influential man. And, of course, his credited influence and leadership are emphasized in practically every city where streets and schools are named after him; and a National holiday has been designated to honor him. Moreover, the next time I am in DC I plan to visit his Memorial, among others; including the Vietnam Memorial.
However, if the FBI feels that some sort of first-hand history experience is necessary to their recruits, what about the Lincoln Memorial or what about Ford’s Theatre where Lincoln was assassinated; both of which I visited on the weekend and on my own time when I was in New Agents’ Training. Isn’t it just possible that Lincoln did as much, or more, for African Americans then did King?
Why does it seem like our government agencies stumble all over themselves trying to be the most politically correct, and the most demonstrably sensitive towards our minority citizens? When will the time arrive when ‘all men are created equal’ (under law) as was promised American citizens? When will the persistent, often latent, quotas and racially tinged preferences be no more?
“I look to a day when people will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.” Martin Luther King, Jr.
Yes, Reverend King, most Americans agree. We are ready to take that next step.
Tuesday, October 22, 2013
It doesn’t surprise me that Bill Ayers, former Weatherman and domestic terrorist, is trying to polish, or should I say distort, his legacy. It will be a life-long pursuit, doomed to failure. His recent book is Public Enemy: Confessions of an American Dissident. He got the “public enemy” right. I don’t plan to read the book. Reportedly, it is more of the same tripe served up in his previous writings about his escapades in the Weather Underground Organization (WUO). Born to a rich family, his failure to be successfully prosecuted for numerous terrorist acts was certainly aided by family wealth and political influence; as well, I must admit, missteps by the FBI and Federal prosecutors.
Some will say, this was a long time ago. For some people that may very well be true; but, for me, well, I still remember and don’t plan to forget anytime soon. To my mind, modern day terrorism has refocused the heinous acts of the WUO, as well as its many similarities with, for example, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s actions at the Boston Marathon. After all, there isn’t much difference between a pipe bomb and a pressure cooker bomb. What’s that you say? ‘Bill and his associates didn’t actually kill anyone.’ First off, that’s not true. Secondly, it wasn’t for lack of trying.
For some of my personal experiences with and impressions of the WUO, I refer you to the following previous post. http://trueattrue.blogspot.com/2013/05/dzhokhar-jahar-tsarnaev-bernardine.html
Of course, Ayers and his ilk continue to harken-back to the Vietnam War, and the alleged ‘criminal’ nature, at least in their minds, of that military operation. There was considerable justification for the military incursion in Vietnam, but I should save that for another time. Besides, our country called and many of us went. Whereas, Ayers and his other little rat buddies scurried around in the dark of night planting bombs without any thought or care about who might be killed or injured.
When the public talks about the cowardly acts of some of our modern day terrorists, don’t forget Bill and his lovely wife Bernardine Dohrn. As they might say over coffee with friends, ‘been there, done that.’
This is snarky I know; but Ayers’ photo, with the ear-rings and the haircut, it appears that he is finally getting in touch with his feminine side. Something the FBI always suspected. What a wus.
For those that were too young during the Days of Rage and its aftermath, or for those who have simply forgotten, I’ve attached a FBI document that will give you a feel for the kind of people Bill Ayers, Bernardine Dohrn et al were (and still are). The FBI Summary Report has been highly redacted, but you will quickly get the idea.
Saturday, October 12, 2013
At first reading the article (The Oregonian, 10/11/13, regarding Terri Horman’s legal efforts in the divorce and child custody hearing with her husband, Kaine), it didn’t seem like anything was particularly new or even interesting. I read it a second time and it became more interesting.
Judge Henry Kantor, Multnomah County Circuit Court, ordered the following:
- 1. A psychological evaluation of Terri Horman will be conducted. However, the evaluator apparently will not ask about the disappearance of Kyron. The evaluator will apparently be directed to ask little about Terri’s relationship and lack of custody with her biological child, Kiara (age 4) – which seems odd. Terri Horman’s attorneys will be present to make sure that she does not make any legal misstep.
- 2. The Judge ordered that Terri and Kaine’s shared marital assets be liquidated to cover the expense of the evaluator (presumably a well-qualified psychiatrist or psychologist).
- 3. The Judge additionally ruled that Terri must submit to a deposition by Kaine’s attorneys. The Judge stated that it was likely that Ms. Horman would invoke the Fifth Amendment, as was her right. “She’ll be placed under oath and she’s going to answer what she’s going to answer.”
I think the Judge’s ruling was very clever and puts Terri and her attorneys in a difficult position. How so, you might ask? Well, the Judge has protected himself by appearing impartial while not giving much wiggle room to Terri.
She may very well pass the psychological evaluation. After all, it has never been claimed that she is delusional – at least outwardly. The evaluator apparently can ask little or nothing about the disappearance of Kyron. And, with her attorneys there to hold her hand, what’s left to evaluate.
The deposition will, on the other hand, be a difficult hurdle. It is not going to look good when the transcript of said deposition continually reflects, ‘On my attorneys’ advice, I refuse to answer that question based on my Fifth Amendment Rights.’ Kaine’s attorney will build a strong case, as well as a narrative, against Terri just by the nature and content of the questions asked.
Example: Do you have knowledge concerning or are you responsible for the disappearance of Kyron? Answer: The Fifth Amendment; which means, in other words that Terri’s answer might tend to incriminate her in a criminal investigation.
Her attorneys will counter with, at this juncture, they do not know what crimes Terri could potentially be charged with. Therefore, they are required to advise her to use the Fifth for protection against unspecified, ubiquitous criminal charges.
The Judge will not buy Terri’s attorneys’ rationale. If Terri refuses to answer questions about the suspicious circumstances of Kyron’s disappearance. That’s all he needs to know. To give her any sort of unsupervised custody of Kiara could potentially cost him his reputation, as well as his job. What if down the line something happened to Kiara while in Terri’s custody? What if Terri is ultimately indicted and convicted in the murder of Kyron? The Judge will have looked foolish in granting her custody of another child. No, the Judge is not about to stick his professional neck out; and rightfully so.
I’m not sure what the extent of his final decision will be. He probably will grant the divorce and some sort of equitable distribution of joint assets. Whether or not he will require Kaine to pay for Terri’s attorneys, I kind of doubt. Regarding Kiara, he will grant some sort of carefully structured and supervised visitation with Kiara, but nothing more.
Saturday, October 5, 2013
I love to read, but usually I prefer nonfiction. I’ve made efforts to write fiction with very limited success. I have had a couple of short stories published. I found that writing fiction is intense, laborious and with few tangible rewards. I am not sure I’m cut out for the solitude and the required rigor. More importantly, most, if not all of fiction, seems contrived – which it is – more obvious when you’ve spent time in the trenches trying to do it. It’s kind of fun to let your imagination run wild. There is a certain cathartic effect. However, fiction writing requires discipline in the extreme – particularly if you are attempting to write a novel. I’m more the day-dreamer type.
That said, I have recently finished reading a fiction book that was recommended to me; and really enjoyed it. The book is The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein. I’m not sure this book would appeal to everyone. After all, it's a story that was, for the most part, told by a dog. It is not a children’s book. Does that surprise you? It is, nonetheless, a book that most readers would enjoy; and particularly those readers who have or love dogs. Warning. Some tears will be shed in this one. At least, that is what happened to me.
The author lives in Seattle and there are a lot of references to the Northwest.
Give the book a try. I don’t think that you will be disappointed.