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Mon Feb 11, 2013 at 10:39 AM PST

Neocon Tantrums

by Jon Soltz

The hysterics of neoconservative senators has become a cacophony that's pretty similar to a room full of children.  It's a series of tantrums that clearly shows they are losing, badly.

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Just when I think Joe Walsh couldn’t be any more offensive, it gets worse. At a town hall this Sunday, Walsh said of Tammy Duckworth’s military service, “Now I’m running against a woman who, my God, that’s all she talks about. Our true heroes, it’s the last thing in the world they talk about.”

I think it’s time we teach Joe Walsh a lesson about true heroism. Tell Walsh that all of our Veterans are heroes and that we can never recognize them enough for their service.

This isn’t about Walsh insulting Tammy - it’s about the 24 million Veterans who have served our country with honor. I’m proud of my military record and I can’t believe that, on the eve of the 4th of July, Walsh wants Vets to shut up about their courage in defending our nation.

This isn’t the first time Walsh has made disparaging remarks about Tammy, her service and Veterans. Remember when he told Politico, “"What else has she done? Female, wounded veteran ... ehhh."

Enough is enough. Tell Joe Walsh to treat our Veterans with the respect they have earned.

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For many of us who served in Iraq or Afghanistan, the hyperbolic rhetoric from those opposed to a repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell is somewhat amusing.  Listen to Senator John McCain or Elaine Donnelly, head of the right-wing Center for Military Readiness, and you'd think allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly would trigger mass rioting in the military.  To this point, those opposed have hung their hat on a survey of Military Times readers, which showed an even split on the issue (though the trend over the years has tilted towards favoring a repeal).  The survey they rely on was unscientific, to say the least, because it relied fully on subscribers, who tend to be older than the military, and mostly officers.  But, it was almost all anyone had to go on.

That changes today.

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A new television ad today running nationally and in eight states, sponsored by VoteVets.org in conjunction with Operation Free, makes a very clear point – to combat those who would do us harm, and protect America, we don’t need more war, we need to cut their funding and effect their ability to cause havoc.  One of the best ways to do that, right now, is pass clean energy and climate legislation in Congress, which would cut our oil dependence in half.

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The whole health care debate has been completely confusing to me and a lot of the veterans and troops I talk with every day.  See, for us, most of us got free, government-run health care.

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Let me get this straight.  The latest polls say three-quarters of the American people want a public option in health care, yet it's in question.  But, Congress is about to throw $369 million (on a down-payment of $2 billion) for a dozen F-22 fighter jets that even the Pentagon doesn't want.  Oh, and the money for it?  It's coming out of funds that were set aside to clean up dangerous nuclear waste in the U.S.

Only in Washington.

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A couple of days ago, I chronicled the quickening departure of some big military names from the Republican party,  those concerned about the party moving even farther to the right a number of issues, including torture.   What struck me at the time is that General David Petraeus came out against torture and for closing Guantanamo.

I was stunned, however, when he admitted today that the United States has violated the Geneva Conventions.  Without saying specifically how we did (though it doesn’t take much imagination to figure it out), Petraeus said on FOX News:

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Thu Apr 30, 2009 at 08:25 AM PDT

Why Vets Are Backing Clean Energy

by Jon Soltz

This week, VoteVets.org has gone up on the air in four districts (and has more planned) with television ads backing the American Clean Energy and Security Act, sponsored by Reps. Waxman and Markey.  The ads, all like this one, use local Iraq veterans urging Reps. Jim Matheson (D-UT), John Barrow (D-GA), Gene Green (D-TX), and Charlie Melancon (D-LA) to vote for the legislation.

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When Sarah Palin was announced as John McCain's Vice Presidential pick, I found it a little disturbing that she told the public that her oldest son, Track, would be deploying to Iraq on September 11.  Generally, disclosing the date of deployment is against Operational Security (OPSEC) and illegal.

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Why is John McCain treating our national security, literally, as a joke?

This week, Senator John McCain made clear that you shouldn't try to combat the rising cost of gas by checking your car's tire pressure, so your car gets more per gallon (something everyone from Al Gore to President Bush, from Joe Lieberman to Barack Obama, from NASCAR to environmental groups say you should do). He's even mocking the idea by handing out "joke" tire pressure gauges, and has a new childish web video out making a joke out of it.

But this is no joke.

In fact, it's so serious that I'd ask everyone to buy tire pressure gauges - available at sites like this -- because ultimately this is about our national security and our troops. Maybe John McCain wants to mock those things, but I sure don't.

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Mon Jun 30, 2008 at 11:37 AM PDT

Time to get General Clark's back

by Jon Soltz

I'm fuming today.  

Yesterday, on Face the Nation, General Wesley Clark spoke honestly and bluntly about what it takes to be Commander in Chief.  In doing so, while he said Senator John McCain's service made him a hero to millions, including Clark himself, that experience does not trump the poor judgment that Senator McCain has shown on some of the most important issues in recent years.

What General Clark said was right, but the right-wing has been in an uproar. And even CNN accused Clark of "swift-boating" McCain. We need to fight back.

That's why VoteVets.org started a petition right here to thank General Clark for speaking out, and letting him know that we want him to keep telling the truth.

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One of the common questions/criticisms from the mainstream media when discussing Iraq and Afghanistan veterans running for Congress is can they prove they're more than just an idealist with a nice resume?  The conventional wisdom is that when facing professional politicians, they'll show how green they are, and just fade away.

Conventional wisdom, meet Ashwin Madia.

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