“Dunkirk on the Bayou”

It looks like Katrina. Empty boat trailers on an INTERSTATE. Folks who just drove up on their own and launched to go help save folks.

Lord, how I LOVE this country and the incredible people who live here.

Our thoughts and prayers are with Texas: the folks in Harvey-hit areas like Rockport and Victoria, and poor Houston, Galveston and Dickinson, who are drowning in the aftermath.

Love out to our precious Julie, Sharon and everyone in harm’s way.

If you can give, we always recommend the Salvation Army. From personal experience, we know they are the first in and damn sure the last to leave.

Lemme Translate

SIX Soldiers Run Down in Paris Last Night

Odd we didn’t hear about that, eh?

French police hunting the driver of a car that rammed into soldiers near their barracks outside Paris have been involved in a motorway shootout, it was reported today.

Police were scrambling to track down the vehicle, which took off after the incident described by local mayor Patrick Balkany as “without a doubt a deliberate act”.
And now they’ve arrested the fellow after a “shoot-out.” Thought they couldn’t have guns?

Officials said the arrest was violent and that police opened fire on the suspect, who was wounded in the gunfire.

As ALWAYS in these instances, we will find he is a disaffected Presbyterian named Yves Montande, who is upset about his fleur de sel encrusted goat cheese business going under and now having to work four days instead of three.

I kid.

He’s probably of North African/middle Eastern origin and from Belgium, or has LOTS of friends with apartments there.

Now I’m racist. See how that works?

My Words for You All to Live By Today

This Article in USA Today

…was supposed to shoot straight at the old heart strings, in the “how can anyone QUESTION her willingness to serve?!?!/ Donald Trump is MEAN and SUCKS!!!!!” vein.

But when you READ it – and the very careful phrasing the few military members who serve with her used when interviewed – it quite specifically makes the VERY PRACTICAL POINTS we’ve brought up repeatedly. Trans are FRAGILE. Far more fragile than flat footed folks, who are not allowed in to begin with. They are non-deployable (read that as: WORTHLESS TO THEIR UNIT) for YEARS. LITERALLY.

Transgender US soldier felt ‘fired’ by Trump’s tweet

The subject line read: “Announcing a personal change.”

The U.S. Army soldier took a deep breath before hitting the button that sent the email to more than 200 fellow troops.

“All considered, I am, and have been, traversing what is essentially a personal matter, but is something I must address publicly,” the email stated. “I am transgender.”

The April 13 email officially ended the secret that burned inside Capt. Jennifer Sims, who was known as Jonathan Sims. But the feeling of relief swiftly turned to unease last week after President Donald Trump tweeted that transgender troops were no longer welcome.

“I read the tweet while I was at work and you know it was devastating because I still have work to do and here I am reading basically what sounds like the president of the United States — who is the commander in chief, he is the ultimate boss of the military — telling me and anybody else that is transgender that we are fired,” Sims said.

Okay. I understand being upset, but let’s take a look at what your gender dysphoria is costing your UNIT…

…Sims has been on hormone therapy by her military doctor since November.

If she interrupts the treatment, her body will revert to being male.

“It would be very difficult to have to go through that,” said Sims, who is based at Hohenfels, a U.S. Army garrison in the German state of Bavaria…

Okay. So “since November” means she’s been taking the drugs for 10 months. So far, lost to her unit for TEN MONTHS. How’s the unit handling that and what’s next?

…Shorter had a lot of questions “being naturally curious and wanting to be a good friend because we didn’t really have a personal relationship. He’s, excuse me, she’s — see I still slip up sometimes — a single captain. I’m married with two daughters. Our lives are different.”

Shorter, 32, of Alanson, Michigan, describes himself as conservative. He said he struggles with his beliefs about what’s appropriate. An assistant operations officer for the battalion, Shorter is concerned about how Sims cannot deploy while undergoing medical procedures.

But Shorter, speaking on his own behalf and not that of the Army, said he would be “incredibly disappointed” if Sims, the best signal officer he has seen, were kicked out.

After Trump’s tweet, a few soldiers, including Shorter, asked Sims how she was doing. She didn’t know what to say.

Her pills will run out in three months. Doctors recommend 12 months of hormone therapy before surgery. The cost of her surgery can run close to $50,000, which Sims was expecting the military would help cover….

So she has to have a full year – UNDEPLOYABLE – on hormone treatments before she can have the surgery, which renders her, again, UNDEPLOYABLE darn near another year, on average, thanks to recuperative time and tons of counseling requirements. No pregnant woman EVER cost the service that. I’m sick of the argument.

Just WHERE does “the GOOD of the service” come into this again?

It DOESN’T. NONE of this is “GOOD” for the service OR, most importantly, the service MEMBERS who have to pick up the slack/take the overseas dets/get shot at/blown up more than they should have to because #feelingz allow their fellow servicemembers #SpecialStatus. The military is shorthanded enough as it is. And here THIS unit might well be losing the “best signal officer” they’ve seen.

What GOOD is she to the Army? How does she make it better? The Army is NOT required to be “good” to her. YOU have to bring something to the table besides a sunny disposition.

Then the practical matters of deploying. What happens in the hills of Afghanistan when the hormone pills didn’t arrive in the last shipment? What happens when the trans males, who still (because they were BORN with it) have their female bone structure, start to break down on humps? Testosterone doesn’t give you man-bones, nor change your pelvis.

Let’s not ignore the lifelong hormonal treatments the government picks up FOREVER (the fact that male to female trans get to keep their prostate, so there’s that to worry about, too), or that the VA is on the hook for any medical expenses incurred related to the surgery FOREVER, because it occurred during the service member’s period of service. A trans is basically a rated disability upon discharge from the service, with lifetime privilege.

No pregnant woman EVER cost the service that. And I’m sorry. When we’re looking at stripping one Basic Allowance for Housing payment away from married active duty couples because MONEY…we sure as Hell don’t have the bling for this.

Nope. The article makes the argument FOR the ban so much better than it makes the argument against it.

Filed Under: “It’s NOT FAIR!!!”

I offer up THIS little gem about a couple of young, on-the-ball San Franciscans who jumped on a good deal when they saw it.

Rich SF residents get a shock: Someone bought their street

Thanks to a little-noticed auction sale, a South Bay couple are the proud owners of one of the most exclusive streets in San Francisco — and they’re looking for ways to make their purchase pay.

Tina Lam and Michael Cheng snatched up Presidio Terrace — the block-long, private oval street lined by 35 megamillion-dollar mansions — for $90,000 and change in a city-run auction stemming from an unpaid tax bill. They outlasted several other bidders.

Now they’re looking to cash in — maybe by charging the residents of those mansions to park on their own private street.

Those residents value their privacy — and their exclusivity. Past homeowners have included Sen. Dianne Feinstein and her financier husband, Richard Blum; House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi; and the late Mayor Joseph Alioto. A guard is stationed round the clock at the stone-gate entrance to the street to keep the curious away.

So imagine the residents’ surprise when San Jose residents Cheng and Lam wound up with the street, its sidewalks and every other bit of “common ground” in the private development that has been managed by the homeowners since at least 1905. That includes a string of well-coiffed garden islands, palm trees and other greenery that enhance the gated and guarded community at the end of Washington Street, just off Arguello Boulevard and down the hill from the Presidio.

“We just got lucky,”said Cheng, a real estate investor.

Of course, once said bazillionaires realized their paltry, neglected tax bill had suddenly become someone else’s taxable property, it was TWO. YEARS. LATER.

Nothing like being on-the-ball.

So they’re suing. Of course. The city to vacate the sale, the kids to stop them from reselling to another buyer (it might “complicate” them getting the tax case dismissed), etc. ad nauseum.

Do you think for two seconds you could sue one of them TWO YEARS LATER if they bought your property because of an unsatisfied tax lien? Oh, HAY-YULL no. You’d be laughed out of court, if they even let you file.

So. Smile while you read this.

Not Only Is Pensacola America’s FIRST Settlement

…we were also the BIGGEST.

…That makes the Luna Settlement, known as Santa Maria de Ochuse, larger than St. Augustine when it was first established in 1565; and it was bigger than Santa Elena when it was initially established in 1566 on the coast of South Carolina.

“That’s because Luna brought 1500 colonist, whereas St. Augustine and Santa Elena had something on the order of 300-600 settlers(at first),” said Worth in reference to the initial size of those colonies.

“So, we had the largest settlement at the time. Therefore, we have the largest archaeological site of the 16th Century Spanish Colonial era here, which really puts it on the map.”…

SO take THAT…well…EVERYBODY, lol!

Happy BIRTHDAY, Crusader!!!

The youngest of the Swilling siblings continues to amaze and appall the world, followed by his legions of rabid fans, who recognize him in spite of his identity concealment attempts.

We were mobbed shortly after I took this photo…

(Pretty sure it was the slammin’ sneaks…)
It’s hard being him.

Have a GREAT day, precious baby bro!

Trump Was Nothing But Slabs of RED MEAT

…in West Virginia tonight ~ big, bloody slabs slapped across the counter time after time, again and again. His (hard) working class audience ate that up and so, frankly, did we sitting on the couch in Pensacola. It was NOTHING if not a celebration of PRIDE in this beat-to-snot country of ours, a booming expression of optimism for the future (Not HOPE, mind you, but a full throated roar of WE ARE AMERICA AND NOBODY DOES IT BETTER). Plus a big middle finger to every Russian obsessed Dem, Repub and media type who are still scraping along “looking for a crime,” as Krauthammer puts it.

Those people (and the thousands outside the arena who couldn’t make it in) were fired up and so was Trump. It wasn’t oratory. It was plain speaking.

And it wasn’t long before our betters in the media were explaining how pathetic those souls are and then carefully wiping their glasses after scribing meticulously wrought condescension of the most elite sort.

*sniff*

Stu Rothenberg’s tale of being burdened by a coal mining father-in-law was so carefully structured, I felt it incumbent upon me to help him flesh it out. You know – say what he was YEARNING to say, if only his sense of delicacy wasn’t so strong, his innate sense of his societal place and its responsibilities to the lower orders so refined after years of practice that free expression is prohibited.

Don’t worry your pretty creases, Stu. I got your back.

I have the unique ability to transcend class barriers and am not ashamed to assist when needed in translation.

I Know These Transcripts Were Released to Wound Trump

But I don’t think this conversation hurts Trump with your average American voter at all. Finally an American president is WORRIED about who might be coming in, in a deal made by a president who could give a shit?

…“I hate taking these people,” Trump said later in the 24-minute conversation. “I guarantee you they are bad. That is why they are in prison right now. They are not going to be wonderful people who go on to work for the local milk people.”

Turnbull attempted to appeal to Trump’s experience as a businessman.

“There is nothing more important in business or politics than a deal is a deal,” Turnbull told Trump. “You can certainly say that it was not a deal that you would have done, but you are going to stick with it.”

Trump said that he was concerned that one of the refugees would “become the Boston bomber in five years.”

“I think it is a horrible deal, a disgusting deal that I would have never made,” Trump added. “As far as I am concerned, that is enough, Malcolm. I have had it.”

I don’t see the problem.

But they need to hunt down whoever leaked these like Gollum looking for his Precious. Let’s see what Gen Kelly can do.

Holy SMOKES, This is Powerful

“Ten Reasons Why I Am No Longer a Leftist”

Set aside some time to savor.

And then share.

Florida Man Hardest Hit

Thank God for the neighbors picking up the slack around here.

UPDATE:

Now I have a damn earworm.

Your Monday Moment of Zen

BeauBeau


…says the air conditioning is fine and he’s perfectly comfortable where he is, thank you for asking. Of course, you’re welcome to take the cat when you leave. Please do.

Cookie?

An Exciting New Clinton Volume About to Be Released

Hillary’s new book is (for REALS) titled:

What Happened

An explanation, not a query?

I dunno, what? We’ve heard EVERY FRICKIN’ EXCUSE in the world from her repeatedly, ad nauseum, since two days after Election Night, when her hangover/drug induced stupor finally wore off.
Now we get to buy the print version?

WHY?

Beats me, too.

Think I’ll pass.

About That Transgenders in the Military Thing…

The military is about the collective, not accommodation. It is about YOU meeting the military’s needs, not the military meeting yours. Service is not a “right,” it is a privilege. Flat feet will keep you out as well, and would require no extensive surgery, no time lost for counselling or drug therapies, nor a lifetime of government funded aftercare, yet the flat foot lobby is ignored. There are no courses designed for “Clinical Care: the Flat Footed”, like the course I’ve included below related to transgender care. The strawmen about “what about blacks/women when THEY weren’t welcome” is precisely that. No surgical intervention required, no counselling, no time lost to the unit because black or female. Even the pregnancy canard falls to the wayside. Once that baby is birthed? Back to work. And no VA care commitment for the rest of the mother’s life. All this for an elective surgery. And it IS “elective,” a CHOICE. There are no gaping fissures, no sucking chest wounds involved, no burst appendix that needs immediate attending to. Choice.

You have to choose this surgery. That new life. Conceivably someone could come in surreptiously specifically for the surgery and, once in and on their way into the “process”, between counselling, therapies, recuperative time, etc., they might never spend a day of a four-year enlistment doing anything, ANYTHING they trained for, or in support of their unit. They certainly wouldn’t be deployable. And after that gift of $130,000+ surgery, all expense paid transition, for which they basically contributed nothing to the collective, they go out the door to the civilian world with lifetime medical from the VA paying for all their hormones and consequent related medical needs. Why? Because they had the surgery while on active duty.

Someone on another thread said “but it’s only tiny percentage of DoD budget” which worked out to however many tens of millions. I remember having to count actual gallons of fuel going into tactical aircraft at the end of the fiscal year because we ran out of MONEY. Those umpteefrats millions MATTER, believe me. When you have Congress talking about pulling one BAH from MARRIED active duty couples because MONEY, those “penny in the budget” millions MATTER. And I’m sorry. Your “elective” life choice shouldn’t impact readiness or another service person’s life in any negative fashion at all. God knows it’s hard enough now.

Of course there are the few exceptional individuals who can do it. Who aren’t the drag: like someday there will be a female who makes it through the REAL Combat Officer’s Course (not a standards lowered one). But that doesn’t speak to the larger entity, to the collective that HAS to be maintained. And that one-off changes nothing, truthfully. It can’t. You have to carry your load most all the time. And not make anyone else’s heavier because you are needy (You also have to be prepared for unvarnished truth from your fellows if you do slack, and people want their feelings protected these days, deserved or otherwise). Don’t quote SEALs at me who are now “female” and squawk at the president, when she was a HE when all the heroics went down and would never BE a SEAL were she a “she” originally. It’s now just his opinion. He’s no moral authority as a transgender because he did none of it AS a she. Glad you were on the Bin Laden raid, dude. Did you do it in drag and on hormones? No? Then STFU.

My sweet little brother couldn’t join the military because of diabetes, the other because of vertebrae crunching. I feel for them because those things are BEYOND their control and, yet, they are disqualifiers. IT’S NOT FAIR, right? Why should something that is one’s totally elective, entirely individual choice be any less disqualifying, when it is so patently a disruptive, counterproductive, expense-luxury-we-can’t-afford choice in regards to the military?

“Fair” is in the eye of the beholder and has never had anything to do with military service. That’s why it works.

Further Reading:

#91920: Clinical Care of the Transgender Patient

Not normally a fan of the Family Research Council, but they have got ALL the numbers nailed, from surgery and therapy to unit impacts.

UPDATE:

I just had to share the helpful assist for the argument via Lady Gaga to POTUS:

PERFECT! SIGN THEM UP and for God’s sake – make SURE THEY EACH GET A GUN!!!

Happy Finest Holiday on EARTH!!!

Have a great, SAFE Fourth of July!

stone.tif

Wail On Skydog

For Florida Cracker, wherever this may find her

Someone’s Career Is Over

And someone was asleep at the wheel

The bodies of missing sailors were found in flooded compartments of the USS Fitzgerald, which came close to sinking after a collision with a container ship off Japan tore a gash under the warship’s waterline, the U.S. Navy’s Seventh Fleet commander said on Sunday.

Vice Adm. Joseph P. Aucoin declined to say how many of the seven missing sailors had been recovered, but Japanese media said all had died. “Out of concern for the families and the notification process, I will decline to state how many we have found at this time,” Aucoin told a news conference.

The search at sea had ended, Aucoin said.

The USS Fitzgerald could have foundered, or even sunk, but for the crew’s desperate efforts to save the ship, he said.

Who decided that crossing a containership’s “T” at 2am was a good idea?

Rep Steve Scalise and Two Capital Police Officers Shot

At baseball practice in Alexandria for the big Congressional baseball game later this week.

Fifty shots in 10 minutes.

Flag Day

For the most beautiful flag in the whole wide world.

Long may she wave.

They Gave So Much

The American Cemetery above Utah Beach, photo taken when we were there in January 2015. It’s American Territory and our boys are all buried facing America. And I’m not ashamed to say I’m sobbing while typing this; it is an amazingly moving place.

“I’m Going Ahead With the Troops”

“Get word to the Navy and bring them in.
We’ll start the war from here.”

Gen Theodore Roosevelt Jr. on Utah Beach.
At 57 years old, the oldest man in the invasion fleet and the only general to personally hit the beach with his troops.

On June 6, 1944.
D Day.

He died shortly thereafter in France and is buried at the Normandy American Cemetery, next to his little brother Quentin, who was killed in his airplane during a dogfight in World War I.

Remember

Barrancas National Cemetery is a stunning place in its own right. But on a day like yesterday, with brooding clouds in the background and the light playing through the oaks and then being snuffed out by the building showers, it has a magic and poignancy second to none. Adjacent to our Daddy is the Civil War and Spanish American War section (yes, Barrancas is that old) and today we found sailors from ironclads buried there. Then we stopped by to visit Daddy, Uncle Nat and Aunt Dolly, leave them all some fresh flowers and, all the while, think of our precious, sweet John Perry.


The flags are always so terribly beautiful. And paid for so dearly.

Don’t Worry England

They’re only up to FOURTEEN lonely wolves so far…

UPDATE: I stand corrected five minutes later.

FIFTEEN.

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