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Old 02-20-2004, 08:49 PM   #1 (permalink)
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War Heroes

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LIBERALS are hopping mad about last week's column. Amid angry insinuations that I "lied" about Sen. Max Cleland, I was attacked on the Senate floor by Sen. Jack Reed, Molly Ivins called my column "error-ridden," and Al Hunt called it a "lie." Joe Klein said I was the reason liberals were being hysterical about George Bush's National Guard service.

I would have left it at one column, but apparently Democrats want to go another round. With their Clintonesque formulations, my detractors make it a little difficult to know what "lie" I'm supposed to be contesting, but they are clearly implying -- without stating -- that Cleland lost his limbs in combat.

It is simply a fact that Max Cleland was not injured by enemy fire in Vietnam. He was not in combat, he was not -- as Al Hunt claimed -- on a reconnaissance mission, and he was not in the battle of Khe Sanh, as many others have implied. He picked up an American grenade on a routine noncombat mission and the grenade exploded.


In Cleland's own words: "I didn't see any heroism in all that. It wasn't an act of heroism. I didn't know the grenade was live. It was an act of fate." That is why Cleland didn't win a Purple Heart, which is given to those wounded in combat. Liberals are not angry because I "lied"; they're angry because I told the truth.

I wouldn't press the point except that Democrats have deliberately "sexed up" the circumstances of Cleland's accident in the service of slandering the people of Georgia, the National Guard and George Bush. Cleland has questioned Bush's fitness for office because he served in the National Guard but did not go to Vietnam.

And yet the poignant truth of Cleland's own accident demonstrates the commitment and bravery of all members of the military who come into contact with ordnance. Cleland's injury was of the routine variety that occurs whenever young men and weapons are put in close proximity -- including in the National Guard.

But it is a vastly more glorious story to claim that Cleland was injured by enemy fire rather than in a freak accident. So after Saxby Chambliss beat Cleland in the 2002 Georgia Senate race, liberals set to work developing a carefully crafted myth about Cleland's accident. Among many other examples, last November, Eric Boehlert wrote in Salon: "(D)uring the siege of Khe Sanh, Cleland lost both his legs and his right hand to a Viet Cong grenade."

Sadly for them, dozens and dozens of newspapers have already printed the truth. Liberals simply can't grasp the problem Lexis-Nexis poses to their incessant lying. They ought to stick to their specialty -- hysterical overreaction. The truth is not their forte.

One of the most detailed accounts of Cleland's life was written by Jill Zuckman in a lengthy piece for The Boston Globe Sunday magazine on Aug. 3, 1997:

Finally, the battle at Khe Sanh was over. Cleland, 25 years old, and two members of his team were now ordered to set up a radio relay station at the division assembly area, 15 miles away. The three gathered antennas, radios and a generator and made the 15-minute helicopter trip east. After unloading the equipment, Cleland climbed back into the helicopter for the ride back. But at the last minute, he decided to stay and have a beer with some friends. As the helicopter was lifting off, he shouted to the pilot that he was staying behind and jumped several feet to the ground.

Cleland hunched over to avoid the whirring blades and ran. Turning to face the helicopter, he caught sight of a grenade on the ground where the chopper had perched. It must be mine, he thought, moving toward it. He reached for it with his right arm just as it exploded, slamming him back and irreparably altering his plans for a bright, shining future.

Interestingly, all news accounts told the exact same story for 30 years -- including that Cleland had stopped to have beer with friends when the accident occurred (a fact that particularly irked Al Hunt).

"He told the pilot he was going to stay awhile. Maybe have a few beers with friends. ... Then Cleland looked down and saw a grenade. Where'd that come from? He walked toward it, bent down, and crossed the line between before and after." (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Dec. 5, 1999)

"(Cleland) didn't step on a land mine. He wasn't wounded in a firefight. He couldn't blame the Viet Cong or friendly fire. The Silver Star and Bronze Star medals he received only embarrassed him. He was no hero. He blew himself up." (The Baltimore Sun, Oct. 24, 1999)

"Cleland was no war hero, but his sacrifice was great. ... Democratic Senate candidate Max Cleland is a victim of war, not a casualty of combat. He lost three limbs on a long-forgotten hill near Khe Sanh because of some American's mistake ..." (The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Sept. 29, 1996)

The story started to change only last year when the Democrats began citing Cleland's lost Senate seat as proof that Republicans hate war heroes. Indeed, until the myth of Republicans attacking Cleland for his lack of "patriotism" became central to the Democrats' narrative against George Bush, Cleland spoke only honorably and humbly about his accident. "How did I become a war hero?" he said to The Boston Globe reporter in 1997. "Simple. The grenade went off."

Cleland even admitted that, but for his accident, he would have "probably been some frustrated history teacher, teaching American government at some junior college." (OK, I got that wrong: I said he'd probably be a pharmacist.)

Cleland's true heroism came after the war, when he went on to build a productive life for himself. That is a story of inspiration and courage. He shouldn't let the Democrats tarnish his admirable life by "sexing up" his record in order to better attack George Bush.
Now I know how much you love Anne Coulter, and just mentioning her name, in some circles, is like dropping a live hand grenade (and I thought of this line before thinking of the inappropriateness), but it is amazing how this one woman, who REALLY needs to eat a few cheeseburgers, can focus national debate, even on the floor of the Senate, a place where you would think they had something better to worry about. Now in the earlier, and oddly titled thread, the only thing that really disturbed me about her portrayal of Cleland’s story was the 'beer' bit. That sounded like a bit of meanness to somehow make it seem even less important, and I really wanted to know if she had a source for this. Apparently she did.

What the amusing thing is that Democrats are trying to be the heroic party now, they have war heroes and they want you to know it, they want you to know it so badly they will take a crippled war veteran out like Max Cleland to tell you what a coward the president is. The reason for this shift is obvious, they got CLOBBERED in the midterm elections, in a large part due to the perception that they were weak on national security.

John Kerry himself, on the senate floor, said back in 1992 that we had to put the past of Vietnam, and who served and how behind us. This was fine when we were electing the pot smoking, draft dodging, soon to be intern fondling Governor from Arkansas, but now its about the war heroes. It wasn’t about war heroes in 1996, when as true a war hero you could find, Bob Dole, ran for office. In fact you heard almost nothing about his injuries, and if he wasn’t always holding a pen help hide the fact that his arm was crippled, you wouldn’t even know he had been injured (people would ask about the pen thing). Here was a man who volunteered to try to go rescue a man who was injured under the guns of a Nazi pillbox, and lost most use of an arm because of it, and came damn close to losing his life. I didn’t know the extent of the story until AFTER the election when the history channel did a piece on it. At the time I couldn’t believe that Dole’s campaign didn’t bring this up more, didn’t highlight it, didn’t run adds with the whole story, but perhaps that’s the difference between a true hero and an opportunist. A true hero does what he does because he thought it was the right thing to do, and any accolades and recognition are almost an embarrassment, you shouldn’t be praised for doing the right thing, everyone should do the right thing as a matter of course.

John Kerry on the other hand we all know is a Vietnam vet, and ever sense being a Vietnam vet has been ‘cool’ again he makes sure you know it. He was a great war hero, just ask him. He was also a radical, and gave false information before congress on war crimes committed in Vietnam supposedly by Americans (google winter soldier john kerry) but that was ‘in the past’ and not something relevant to now, unlike his Vietnam service, which is very important even though it was even more ‘in the past’ then his lies to congress.
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Last edited by Ustwo; 02-20-2004 at 08:54 PM..
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Old 02-20-2004, 09:28 PM   #2 (permalink)
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You know what? I don't like kerry any more than you do, but i like bush even less. What's going on is politics as usual. It's not just the democrats though. It's the idea that the ends justify the means, a concept i'm sure coulter is well aware of, that makes politics so depressing.
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Old 02-21-2004, 06:03 AM   #3 (permalink)
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The fact Kerry voluntarily thought in Vietnam would make me less likely to vote for him - I would have more respect for someone like Bush or Clinton who managed to get out of fighting somehow - on that issue at least.

I think the American people just want a change though, and for all Kerry's problems, he will win because he isnt Bush in my opinion. As for Ann Coulter, she seems mentally unbalanced as far as I can see, and I couldnt care less what she thinks about anything.
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Old 02-21-2004, 07:00 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Cleland is a hero not because of how he was injured, but because of what he did in the war up to that point. Coulter conveniently leaves that part out. You know, the part where he won a Silver Star "for gallantry in action" at Khe Sanh.
Coulter's previous piece was a joke and this one is as well.

I would have no problem with Bush's military record as long as he would come clean about it to the American people and to himself. Instead, he parades around in a flight suit and says he's proud of being a "war president", even though he personally would never go to war.

September 11th changed the country and its effect still looms. Americans are scared and vulnerable and they need a strong leader to protect them. The Democrats didn't fully realize this in 2002, but they do now. They will present the American people with a clear choice: a man who wouldn't go to war himself but enjoys sending other people to them vs. a man who's been to war and understands the difference between a just war and an unnecessary war.
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Old 02-22-2004, 01:02 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
"I don't know what it is that all these Republicans who didn't serve in Vietnam are fighting a war against those of us who did," the Massachusetts senator said.

Kerry has campaigned on his Vietnam combat record, which includes three Purple Hearts, a Bronze Star and a Silver Star.

Chambliss said Kerry, despite his service, has a weak record on military issues.

"He has a long history, particularly in the last decade, of not only voting to cut intelligence spending, but introducing bills to cut intelligence spending," Chambliss said.

Cleland, a Democrat, had some criticism for Chambliss.

"For Saxby Chambliss, who got out of going to Vietnam because of a trick knee, to attack John Kerry as weak on the defense of our nation is like a mackerel in the moonlight that both shines and stinks," he said.
More 'WE WERE WAR HEROES DAMN IT DON'T QUESTION OUR ACTIONS AT HOME!' from the Kerry camp. As predicted by Ustwo.

http://apnews.myway.com/article/20040222/D80S2RDO1.html
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Old 02-22-2004, 05:04 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Cutting spending on the military is a good thing, and the fact that Kerry wants to do it will make more people want to do it. Dont you think the American people are tired of fighting wars that they dont understand the reasoning behind? (ie - because Bin Laden is hiding in Pakistan, and may be responsibe for the WTC attack, lets attack Afghanistan...)

The American people want less war, yes - there has to be self defence, but very few people I know can understand how these people fighting and dying in Iraq or Afghanistan are doing so in the defence of America.
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Old 02-22-2004, 02:14 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I dont mean to attack personally... but what does an English socialist know about the American public?
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Old 02-22-2004, 02:36 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Strange Famous
Dont you think the American people are tired of fighting wars that they dont understand the reasoning behind? (ie - because Bin Laden is hiding in Pakistan, and may be responsibe for the WTC attack, lets attack Afghanistan...)

What makes you say that the public didn't fully understand our actions in Afghanistan?

Afghanistan was the perfect opening target in a war against Al Qaeda. There were training camps for islamic terrorist organizations there. I can't think of a better way to begin a war on terror than inhibiting the training of more terrorists.
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Old 02-24-2004, 10:37 PM   #9 (permalink)
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thats the problem you are not inhibiting the training of more terrorists you are just making their resolve stronger an their hatred even more stronger, Afghanistan would have been the perfect spot to start the war against terror (I still find it funny that when you use abbreviations it spells TWAT) if they would have finished the job and not vacated the country I know there are still US soldiers there, things might have gotten stable to a degreee had the states not got the urge to get retribution for Bush's "daddy" and wanted to take out Saddam. Now you have people on no charges in Gitmo (unlawful combatants whatever that is they are POW's they fought in a war, or should they not protect their country against invaders, the states can't make up names for prisoners out of nowhere, although somehow they have gotten away with it.) Afghanistan's capital isn't even safe no matter what is said is unsafe and heaven forbid you venture into the countryside, and Iraq where the US is going to be stuck for a long long time, and the gureillas are showing no signs of slowing down, but they seem to be getting more organized.
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Old 02-25-2004, 05:03 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Has anyone checked out Kerry's purple hearts? I mean what were his wounds and how did he get them?
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Old 02-25-2004, 05:37 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Here's what I found this is the link to the whole story
http://mensnewsdaily.com/archive/p/p...wlik021104.htm


"During his first intense experience in a combat situation on December 2, 1968, Kerry suffered a slight arm wound. He was awarded his first Purple Heart. On February 20, 1969, Kerry experienced a small shrapnel wound in his left thigh, earning his second Purple Heart. Eight days later, on February 28, 1969, Kerry beached his boat in the center of enemy territory after receiving a B-40 rocket shot. As an enemy sprang up and fled, a machine gunner shot him. Kerry “leaped from the boat and dashed in to administer a ‘coup de grace’ to the wounded Viet Cong,” and returned with the B-40 rocket and launcher. He was awarded the Silver Star for this. On March 13, 1969, a mine detonated near Kerry’s boat, slightly wounding him in the arm. He was awarded his third Purple Heart."

"Conveniently, Naval rules allowed a soldier wounded three times to return to the United States. After two weeks of receiving his third wound, on March 27, 1969, Kerry’s request to leave duty early was granted."
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Old 02-25-2004, 06:57 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Seaver
I dont mean to attack personally... but what does an English socialist know about the American public?
Actually, while I seldom agree with Strange Famous' political posts, I don't know that it's fair to question his knowledge of American politics. The frightening thing of it is, he seems to have a better grasp of our politics than do most Americans.

So, the question then becomes not what does an English socialist know about American politics, but rather perhaps why, when so few of our own do? That, is what disturbs me, more than just a little.
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Old 02-25-2004, 07:32 AM   #13 (permalink)
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"Conveniently, Naval rules allowed a soldier wounded three times to return to the United States. After two weeks of receiving his third wound, on March 27, 1969, Kerry’s request to leave duty early was granted."

I think it's sort of obnoxious to call being wounded three times convenient. That article seems to enjoy using the word "slight" in a pejorative way. Having never received any sort of shrapnel or bullet wound, I doubt I would find any such injury "slight." The man has three Purple Hearts, a Silver Star and a Bronze Star (which the article incorrectly lists as a "Bronze Medal"). I'm not unimpressed. The article rolls pretty quickly into liberal-bashing (e.g., "this is why liberals can never get a radio show; lots of pictures is a requirement for spreading liberal propaganda") so I find it a little suspect .
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Old 02-25-2004, 07:43 AM   #14 (permalink)
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I never said it was my view on Mr. Kerry I happen to think that he did his country a great service,(3 Purple Hearts, a Silver star with "V", and the Bronze Star impressive) I have read many a combat vet refer to their wounds as slight wether it be bullet, shrapnel, but I too doubt they can be considered slight. and quite frankly I hope he is your next President.

The person who poted above me wanted to know what he recieved his medals for I merely typed his name into Google and took the first description I found. To be honest with you I never read past what he recieved his medals for as I figured it was an anti-Kerry site.

I should have clarified that it wasn't my view that I was merely fullfilling a request.
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Old 02-25-2004, 08:00 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Jay, I didn't mean my post to be an attack on you, just a criticism of the article.
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Old 02-25-2004, 08:12 AM   #16 (permalink)
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sorry about that I misunderstood
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Old 02-25-2004, 08:21 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Quote:
"During his first intense experience in a combat situation on December 2, 1968, Kerry suffered a slight arm wound. He was awarded his first Purple Heart. On February 20, 1969, Kerry experienced a small shrapnel wound in his left thigh, earning his second Purple Heart. Eight days later, on February 28, 1969, Kerry beached his boat in the center of enemy territory after receiving a B-40 rocket shot. As an enemy sprang up and fled, a machine gunner shot him. Kerry “leaped from the boat and dashed in to administer a ‘coup de grace’ to the wounded Viet Cong,” and returned with the B-40 rocket and launcher. He was awarded the Silver Star for this. On March 13, 1969, a mine detonated near Kerry’s boat, slightly wounding him in the arm. He was awarded his third Purple Heart."

"Conveniently, Naval rules allowed a soldier wounded three times to return to the United States. After two weeks of receiving his third wound, on March 27, 1969, Kerry’s request to leave duty early was granted."
Nothing biased there

Quote:
Perhaps if this was John Kerry’s only record in Vietnam, he could be considered a respectable soldier. However, what really makes Kerry not just not a war hero, but an anti-hero, is his demoralizing and accusatory anti-war activism after he returned to the United States, particularly the book he put together, The New Soldier.
A respectable soldier!?!
First of all, what military service has Amber Pawlik, the author of this objective little essay, ever preformed? I highly suspect...none. Though, admittedly, I do not know that for certain.
Secondly, if John Kerry wanted to come out against the war, that was, and still is, his business. I would respect his opinions of anti-was sentiment all the more for actually having been there, and done that. He spoke from personal experience, not from what he read somewhere, or was told third or fourth hand.

I should point out that, while I am not a big Kerry supporter, I take the utmost offense at Amber Pawlik's shots against his military service.

I want this biatch's biography, and her credentials! Most of all, I...want...her...service...record!
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Old 02-25-2004, 09:40 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Bill O'Rights
Nothing biased there



A respectable soldier!?!
First of all, what military service has Amber Pawlik, the author of this objective little essay, ever preformed? I highly suspect...none. Though, admittedly, I do not know that for certain.
Secondly, if John Kerry wanted to come out against the war, that was, and still is, his business. I would respect his opinions of anti-was sentiment all the more for actually having been there, and done that. He spoke from personal experience, not from what he read somewhere, or was told third or fourth hand.

I should point out that, while I am not a big Kerry supporter, I take the utmost offense at Amber Pawlik's shots against his military service.

I want this biatch's biography, and her credentials! Most of all, I...want...her...service...record!
I agree 100%
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Old 02-26-2004, 06:33 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Re: War Heroes

Quote:
Originally posted by Ustwo
Anne Coulter (sic) REALLY needs to eat a few cheeseburgers
now that i can agree with!

the military service squabble is like watching a jell-o wrestling match... exploitave, sad and pathetic, but you just can't look away.

no one can take away the medals. no one can take away the scars. whatever the opinions held before, during or after any war, hatred of liberals or democrats or conservatives or republicans, to attack even one combat wounded veteran's service is a discredit and a dishonor to all who have served and sacrificed when duty called.

bob dole, john kerry and max cleland all deserve our utmost thanks and respect. which side of the isle they may have been on should not even be a consideration. democrat or republican, we all die the same.
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Last edited by gibingus; 02-26-2004 at 06:40 AM..
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Old 02-27-2004, 01:11 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Quote:
the military service squabble is like watching a jell-o wrestling match... exploitave, sad and pathetic, but you just can't look away
That mental image will make watching CNN just that much more "uuurrrrgggg" for the next month or so
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Old 02-27-2004, 02:52 AM   #21 (permalink)
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I have a problem here. Isn't it the GOP that is so gung ho to help and support our armed forces?

Yet they belittle 2 men who fought in a war that very few in thier position did (white middle class). Both recieved numerous medals and ribbons and both were injured in the line of combat. THEY (THE GOP) DO THIS SOLELY FOR THIER OWN GAIN. If Cleland or Kerry were Republicans and the Dems. challenged thier records then we'd hear an outcry far louder than what we hear from the Dems. defending those men's records.

From the top of Mount Limbaugh to the shores of Hannity, to the plains of Glenn Beck to the rivers of Ms. Coulter and the depths of Lake O'Reilly, we'd hear every day, pounding it into us how evil the Dems. are to savage people who served thier country with honor and dignity.

I'll tell you something. I know more than a handful of Vietnam Vets. and trust me there was "No safe zone" so yes, Cleland got injured on the line of combat and therefore deserves OUR RESPECT. These are men who wore the uniform with pride, when a vast majority wouldn't (including the president and his predecessor).

So to condemn these 2 men's records of service to further YOUR OWN FUCKING PERSONAL AND POLITICAL GAINS IS DISRESPECTFUL TO ALL MEN WHO WORE THE UNIFORM. IT IS IN MY OPINION FAR MORE PATHETIC AND SHOWS ME YOUR TRUE FEELINGS ABOUT THIS COUNTRY THAN ANYTHING I CAN THINK OF. IT IS THIS LEVEL OF LOWNESS THAT SHOWS HOW ONE PARTY IS WILLING TO DESTROY THE VERY FIBER OF OUR COUNTRY.

WILL THE REPUBLICANS STOP AT NOTHING TO KEEP THIER PRECIOUS POWER?

PS Yes, I did wear the uniform, I proudly served in the UNITED STATES NAVY and did so with honor and love of country and I was HONORABLY DISCHARGED.

How did Limbaugh, or Hannity or O'Reilly or Beck serve? Oh they have radio shows that tell us if we don't think thier way then we are dumb, ignorant and don't deserve our freedoms. What fucking hypocrites.
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