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Reposted from Mikey Weinstein by Shockwave

A major war is being viciously waged against the United States of America, a war that’s global in scope and poses a terrifying threat to our national security interests. The ruthless attacks, which this conflict has generated, have inflicted grievous damage to nothing less than the U.S. Constitution itself, as well as the foundational core values of the United States armed forces. While the mainstream media has been woefully asleep regarding this raging conflict, the Pentagon has verified through its own official publications that the war has already led to vast transformations within the armed forces. Religious fanatics are spearheading this pernicious worldwide campaign and, no, I’m NOT referring to Shia or Sunni Islamic jihadists…. but “jihadist” was a good guess. I’m referring, of course, to our very own fire & brimstone fundamentalist Christian crusaders, both within uniform and without, who have seemingly infiltrated every echelon of the United States armed forces. These religious extremists are bolstered by legions of civilian zealots, parachurch organizations, legislators, and persons of influence who are carrying out their own grievous massacre of bedrock civil rights under the banner of “religious freedom.”

You want the latest proof? Witness the appalling appellation and homage recently given to USAF Chaplain (Capt.) Sonny Hernandez, 445th Airlift Wing Chaplain Corps: freshly crowned as the "Air Force Life Cycle Management Center Individual Mobilization Accession Company Grade Officer of the Year" at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, in Dayton, Ohio. The official statement regarding this newly benighted Company Grade Officer of the Year sounds wonderfully amazing and ecumenical. Well, don’t cue the U.S. Air Force band rendition of Kumbaya yet, folks – the plot’s about to thicken with bountiful bile and phlegm.

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Reposted from Awaypoint by Shockwave

Did a recent graphic by the anti-gay, pro-religious-freedom American Family Association make their intentions a little too clear?

The American Family Association (AFA) proudly describes itself as one of the largest and most effective “pro-family” organizations in the United States.

This doesn’t mean that AFA advocates for healthcare or paid family leave or family planning or education funding or laws that protect abused children, or aid to dependent children, or other evidence based services that promote family flourishing. Nope; it means they use their legal clout and broadcast media to oppose gay rights in places like Indiana, obstruct access to abortion care, repeal universal healthcare, and defund public services and regulations.

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Reposted from Mikey Weinstein by Shockwave

Two Dozen Airmen Seek MRFF Intervention;
USAF says “Matter Closed/Appropriate Action Taken"

What in the hell is going through the mind of the most senior commanding officer at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base (AFB) anyway? Well, my friends let me tell you. U.S. Air Force Colonel Mark H. Slocum, the Commander of Seymour Johnson AFB's 4th Fighter Wing, has gone rogue in the name of "the Lord" in a clear violation of USAF regulations and that most beloved and sacred of documents to Americans – the Constitution of the United States of America, and its foundational Bill of Rights. Slocum is marshaling his officers, enlisted troops and AF civilians stationed at the North Carolina F-15 fighter base to fight the good fight – a veritable new Crusade, in fact – against ISIS, under the banner of his "Lord's" heaven.

Forget the love of country and freedom that is denied to the people of Iraq and Syria by this cancer spawned by decades of tyranny and instability, ISIS. The counteroffensive being waged against the forces of radicalized, sectarian jihadism is being frightfully framed at Seymour Johnson AFB as a clash of competing deities. That's right! Our brave warfighters are being fed an extremist narrative whereby a ghastly, caricatured version of Allah (as envisioned by the twisted extremist fringes of Wahhabi Islam) is pitted against Slocum's ultra-sectarian Judeo-Christian god (aka "The Lord") in a mano a mano clash of the titans akin to an epic torn straight from the annals of Greek mythology. The theocratic Col. Slocum peppers his command briefings with a rallying cry that mirrors – in brimstone-tinged, southern fried, fundamentalist form – the rabid religiosity that has poisoned the minds of the bloodthirsty ISIS. What is the goal of both contending forces? To unleash their respective "holy warriors" upon the Middle East, enveloping the Cradle of Civilization in a ferocious conflagration for the purpose of bringing its people under their heinous yoke? For ISIS; clearly yes. For the USAF to adopt the same goal; outrageous, treacherous, and treasonous beyond description.

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Reposted from vzfk3s by llbear

On March 10 during a training exercise off the coast of Florida in heavy fog a Black hawk helio crashed into the gulf. All 11 on board perished in the crash, 7 Marines of an elite unit, 4 Army aircrew.

3 of the Marines were from Michigan, each was a combat Vet. Governor Snyder has decline to order the US flag be lowered in Honor of these Men because they were not oversea in active combat. This is the same Gov that 2 weeks ago ordered flags lowered for the passing of a retired State legislator.

As a Peace time Army vet my reply to the Gov is FU. MY flag will fly at half mast until the final Funeral Service has been held. They each deserve the Honor.

If You live in Michigan and agree please do likewise.

Reposted from Mikey Weinstein by Shockwave

By now it’s likely you’ve heard about the intense drama going down at the Navy Nuclear Nuclear Power Training Center involving Lt. Commander (Chaplain) Wesley Modder and his Commanding Officer, Navy Captain Jon Fahs. A quick summary is that Chaplain Modder has been accused of making inappropriate comments and of being intolerant, to wit: telling students that homosexuality is wrong; shaming and berating female students for having unmarried sex and becoming pregnant out of wedlock; asking a female staff member about her sexual activities; and discriminating against students of different faiths and backgrounds than his own. He is facing potentially career-ending administrative action from the United States Navy.  The Navy has also issued a “No Contact Order,” preventing Chaplain Modder from officiating at the funeral of a recently deceased sailor from a prior unit where the chaplain had served.

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Reposted from A Progressive Military Wife by angelajean
"Everything that we do and every decision we make has to be focused on the veterans we serve," VA Secretary Robert McDonald said.

"Changing the way we determine eligibility to make the process easier for veterans is part of our promise to our veterans."

Military Times, March 18, 2015

Secretary McDonald is speaking specifically of changes being made to the rules and regs of the VA that will allow any veteran to be eligible for VA health care despite their net worth. As of yesterday, the VA will only consider household income and expenses from the prior year.

But at the same time the VA is removing net worth as a factor in determining eligibility for health care, they are attempting to change rules that will make it more difficult for veterans and their eligible widows to qualify for pensions:

In a surprise move, the Veteran’s Administration is proposing new rules on just who can get monthly pension or widow’s benefits. It’s an attempt to prevent people from gaming the system by giving away assets and then applying for aid. But veterans and their families are crying foul. They say it will cause real harm by making an already cumbersome process more so and will mean more delays in granting benefits. That would put needy veterans at risk of losing one of the most critical benefits out there—one that can help veteran’s stay at home and not go to a nursing home.

Forbes, March 10, 2015

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Reposted from Mikey Weinstein by angelajean

It's difficult to decide who's happier with the latest The U.S. Air Force decision endorsing the "Have a Blessed Day" greeting by armed Air Force sentries at its gates at Robins AFB, Georgia.  The Dominionist Christians are giggling at their Wednesday evening bible studies thinking that they've finally nosed their camel under the tent and can use their Christian code to bless and evangelize the unwitting and the subordinate.  The Air Force leadership is basking in what they see as a procedurally defensible "victory" over me and the MRFF and our 13 USAF officer, NCO and civilian clients at Robins (9 of whom are fully practicing Christians). They are happily noting that there's no Air Force Instruction VIOLATED by the use of the phrase—so "WE WIN", gleefully squeals the Air Force and its fundamentalist Christian puppeteers!

However, the smoking lamp (or is it, the "BS lamp") has been lit on this stinking travesty and you don't need to be a Constitutional scholar (or rocket scientist) to see the Mach 3 hypocrisy here.  The Air Force is busy citing their "AFI" for not specifically forbidding the greeting.  (Note:  AFI stands for Air Force Instruction—we don't call them ‘regulations' any more in this kinder, gentler, more developmental time).  What they don't mention is that the AFI also doesn't specifically prohibit sentries from saying "Namaste", "Hail Satan", "Have a godless day" or "Allahu-Akbar" either. The AFI simply is not an ultimately dispositive or controlling authority to quote in opposition to armed, uniformed, USAF sentries offering "Have a blessed day" or any other non-mission-oriented statement. There still exists, however, remarkably compelling arguments that lead any reasonable and rational supporter and defender of the Constitution to wonder why the Air Force would allow, much less promulgate, the belief that such willful stupidity is the right thing to do. Let's look at the situation more closely.

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Reposted from A Progressive Military Wife by angelajean
Are you a Vietnam Veteran? Do you know a Vietnam Veteran? Do you care at all about veteran issues?

Then we need you to help spread the word quickly.

The VA is out to change a small program that currently benefits many, many Vietnam era veterans and their widows:

The VA pension—or widow’s pension–benefit provides money to needy veterans and surviving spouses who require daily assistance for necessary activities such as eating, bathing and dressing. Basically, there is no hard and fast net worth number to be eligible, at least for now. If you get down to $80,000 in assets—not including your house or car—and you have high deductible medical expenses that net out your income, you may qualify. A single veteran’s maximum monthly benefit is $1,788, and a surviving spouse’s is $1,149 (it’s tax-free).

Forbes, March 10 2015

Eventually, this program should also help veterans from both the Afghanistan and Iraq wars. But if the VA has anything to do with it, the process of applying will be onerous. According to Eileen Walsh, a lawyer who specializes in elder law, "the VA is rigging the system to disqualify those in need, or force them to bleed through whatever incomes or savings they have to retain the benefit."
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Reposted from pdc by poopdogcomedy
Received this e-mail today from Joe Sestak's (D. PA) U.S. Senate campaign:
Sen. Toomey says one thing and then does another. Let's take a look. On the left, below, we have what Sen. Toomey says in Pennsylvania, from his March 13 newsletter. On the right is what he does when he gets to Washington, D.C.
If you would like to donate and get involved with Sestak's campaign, you can do so here:
Congressman Joe Sestak stands with his daughter Alex (left) and wife susan (right, behind) as he gives his concession speach after losing to Pat Toomey on Tuesday, October 2, 2010 at the Radnor Hotel.  //ed note: ROB KANDEL / THE MORNING CALL  ***** Headline:  2010 THE YEAR IN REVIEW ** From a quadruple homicide in Northampton to the defeat of Pennsylvania's longest-serving senator, 2010 will go down as a year of heartache, anxiety and political change (12/26/10) *****
Reposted from pdc by poopdogcomedy

Hello fellow Kossacks! I've had the privilege to interview politicians like Rep. Ted Deutch (D. FL-21) and former U.S. Senator Mark Begich (D. AK) in the past but this upcoming interview I am the most excited about. I consider former Congressman and Decorated Admiral Joe Sestak (D. PA) as a friend and I am very thankful and excited that while he's walking across the state of Pennsylvania that he wants to grant me an interview. Of course I could use my fellow Kossacks help so if you have questions for the Admiral, please post them in the comments. I will submit them after the weekend. In the mean time, feel free to get involved and learn more about Sestak's campaign here:

Congressman Joe Sestak stands with his daughter Alex (left) and wife susan (right, behind) as he gives his concession speach after losing to Pat Toomey on Tuesday, October 2, 2010 at the Radnor Hotel.  //ed note: ROB KANDEL / THE MORNING CALL  ***** Headline:  2010 THE YEAR IN REVIEW ** From a quadruple homicide in Northampton to the defeat of Pennsylvania's longest-serving senator, 2010 will go down as a year of heartache, anxiety and political change (12/26/10) *****
Reposted from pdc by poopdogcomedy
Received this e-mail today and it brought a smile to my face:
Six years ago, in an impossible year for progressives, retired Navy Admiral Joe Sestak lost a heartbreaking campaign for U.S. Senate in Pennsylvania by two points to Tea Party favorite, Pat Toomey.

Great news though: moments ago, Joe Sestak announced that he's seeking a rematch in 2016, and VoteVets is proud to stand with him.

If the Senate is going to change hands next November, progressives must flip Pennsylvania ... and Joe Sestak is the best choice to lead the way.

It is imperative that Joe Sestak's campaign get off to a strong start today. Help make it happen your $3 contribution to his campaign.

Pat Toomey stood with Senate extremists who held veterans' health care hostage during a time of crisis last year, introducing legislation that would put the Department of Veterans Affairs on a path to privatization, as well. As former President of the Club for Growth, he literally led the fight to privatize Social Security and Medicare.

Retired Admiral Sestak's vision for veterans and working families stands in stark contrast to Senator Toomey's. You can be sure he'll stand up for us on the campaign trail, and in office ... because he's done it his entire career.

VoteVets is proud to stand with Joe Sestak's campaign for U.S. Senate. He's family. Join us with your $3 contribution today:

Joe Sestak served his country for over thirty years in the United States Navy. He'll make a great leader in the United States Senate.

Thanks for standing with him,

Jon Soltz
Iraq War Veteran and Chairman

Click here to donate to Sestak's campaign:
Congressman Joe Sestak stands with his daughter Alex (left) and wife susan (right, behind) as he gives his concession speach after losing to Pat Toomey on Tuesday, October 2, 2010 at the Radnor Hotel.  //ed note: ROB KANDEL / THE MORNING CALL  ***** Headline:  2010 THE YEAR IN REVIEW ** From a quadruple homicide in Northampton to the defeat of Pennsylvania's longest-serving senator, 2010 will go down as a year of heartache, anxiety and political change (12/26/10) *****

Wed Mar 04, 2015 at 09:37 AM PST

Roanoke meet-up anyone?

by Gordon20024

Reposted from Gordon20024 by Gordon20024

I'm still riding high on the energy and in the comrade that was Dkos Asheville last week.

I'd like to express my thanks to everyone involved. Directly or indirectly each and every attendee (50 my last count) contributed something to the discussion. It was a wonderful turnout and participation far exceeding my expectations.

Randallt posed a question to me while suggesting the next DKos Asheville meet-up be a road trip four hours north to my home to assist my efforts here - What can 20 Kossacks do? I gave the question considerable thought and came up with What can 200 Kossacks do?

This is an open invitation for all Morning Open Tread (MOTlies) and CUA (former newbies) to unite in a beautiful and relaxed setting as Spring arrives to this broad valley and wakens the dogwood and apple blossoms.

 photo confuscious-education_zpsc359ff71.jpg



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