Posts Tagged ‘Canada’

The Importance of Reading Food Labels

December 13, 2012

Imported food we eat and the junk we buy

Green Giant frozen vegetables are from China, and so are most of Europe’s Best.  Arctic Gardens are okay. So is Birdseye.

Never buy the grocery store garlic unless it is clearly marked from USA or Canada, the other stuff is grown in people poop (even worse than chicken poop). China is the largest producer of garlic in the world. U.S. is next.

Buy only local honey, much honey is shipped in huge containers from China and re-packed here.

Cold-FX is grown and packed in China and is full of fecal bacteria. It doesn’t work anyway, it’s a big scam. If the country of origin is not clearly marked beware. If it’s produce, ask an employee.

Watch out for packages which state “prepared for”, “packed by” or “imported by”. I don’t understand the lack of mandatory labeling, especially the produce.

The country of origin should be clearly shown on the item in the store. I go to the local farmers’ markets in season and keep a wary eye open the rest of the year.

Please read this very carefully, and read to the very bottom. It’s important for all of us.

How is it possible to ship food from China cheaper than having it produced in the U.S. or Canada?

FOR EXAMPLE THE “OUR FAMILY” BRAND OF MANDARIN ORANGES SAYS RIGHT ON THE CAN ‘FROM CHINA’. SO, FOR A FEW MORE CENTS, BUY THE LIBERTY BRAND.  GOLD BRAND OR DOLE IS FROM CALIFORNIA.

Beware, Costco sells canned peaches and pears in a plastic jar that come from China.

ALL “HIGH LINER” AND MOST OTHER FROZEN FISH PRODUCTS COME FROM CHINA OR INDONESIA. THE PACKAGE MAY SAY “PACIFIC SALMON” ON THE FRONT, BUT LOOK FOR THE SMALL PRINT. MOST OF THESE PRODUCTS COME FROM FISH FARMS IN THE ORIENT WHERE THERE ARE NO REGULATIONS ON WHAT IS FED TO THESE FISH.

Recently The Montreal Gazette had an article by the Canadian Government on how Chinese feed the fish: They suspend chicken wire crates over the fish ponds, and the fish feed on chicken s–t.

If you search the internet about what the Chinese feed their fish, you’ll be alarmed; e.g., growth hormones, expired anti-biotic from humans. Never buy any type of fish or shellfish that comes from these countries: Vietnam, China, Philippines.

Check this out personally. I did. Stienfeld’s Pickles are made in India – just as bad!

Another example is in canned mushrooms. No-Name brand came from Indonesia. Also check those little fruit cups. They used to be made in Canada in the Niagara region until about 2 years ago. They are now packaged in China!

While the Chinese export inferior and even toxic products, dangerous toys, and goods to be sold in North American markets, the media wrings its hands! Yet, 70% of North Americans believe that the trading privileges afforded to the Chinese should be suspended! Well, duh! Why do you need the government to suspend trading privileges?

DO IT YOURSELF, JUST BUY FROM CANADA AND THE U.S.!

Simply look on the bottom of every product you buy, and if it says ‘Made in China ‘ or ‘PRC’ (and that now includes Hong Kong), simply choose another product, or none at all. You will be amazed at how dependent you are on Chinese products, and you will be equally amazed at what you can do without.

THINK ABOUT THIS:

If 200 million North Americans refuse to buy just $20 each of Chinese goods, that’s a billion dollar trade imbalance resolved in our favor…fast!! The downside? Some Canadian/American businesses will feel a temporary pinch from having foreign stockpiles of inventory.

Just one month of trading losses will hit the Chinese for 8% of their North American exports. Then they will at least have to ask themselves if the benefits of their arrogance and lawlessness are worth it.

START NOW and don’t stop!  Send this to everybody you know. Let’s show them that we are intelligent, and NOBODY can take us for granted.

Editors note: The quantity of Chinese food imports makes it virtually impossible for the FDAto inspect even 1% of the imports. The Chinese government doesn’t care about the food it’s exporting, allowing food producers to use toxic chemicals in the production of their food items. So beware, and be aware of what you are buying!

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THE SHARIAH THREAT TO AMERICA

July 16, 2011

THE SHARIAH THREAT
by Kathy Jessup

A judge refuses a protection order for a woman raped by her Muslim husband, ruling the man’s abuse is allowed under Shariah law.

A cartoonist is in hiding after a tongue-in-cheek “Everybody Draw Mohammed Day” promotion earned her a fatwa death order for violating a Shariah edict banning drawing the Muslim prophet’s image.

A Shariah-compliant investment fund is camouflaged as a charity and funnels more than $12 million to finance Hamas suicide bombers.

Not exactly shocking in some Muslim countries where strict adherence to centuries-old rules, based on Islamic teachings, shines a spotlight on stonings and beheadings.

But these occurred recently in the United States.

Now “honor killings,” publicly funded accommodations for Islamic prayer and billions in Wall Street investments linked to potentially dangerous terror activities are raising political and constitutional questions in America.

Can or should Shariah law co-exist with the Judeo-Christian foundations of U.S. jurisprudence and the Constitution? Will imposition of Islamic-based edicts, enabled by so-called religious tolerance and political correctness, open the door to radical forms of the religion in Western democracies?

A growing number of states are drafting constitutional amendments to prohibit state judges from applying Islamic or international law in deciding cases. But even the 70 percent of voters who passed Oklahoma’s measure in November hasn’t settled the issue for Sooners.

When the director of the Oklahoma chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) challenged the amendment in court, a federal judge granted a preliminary injunction, ruling the amendment could be interpreted to single out Shariah law and discredit Islam, violating the First Amendment.

WHAT IS SHARIAH LAW?

Shariah (meaning “path” in Arabic) codifies the words, practices and teaching of Islam’s Prophet Mohammed, serving as a guide/law for everything from Muslims’ family and religious practices to financial transactions.

Several hundred years after the death of Mohammed, the prophet’s model living practices were assembled into the hadith, initially melding Islam and local customs. Various hadiths eventually developed into four schools of Sunni thought and one that guides Shiites. Each differs in the degree they draw from the Koran, Islamic thought and community practices.

Shariah identifies five hadd offenses, serious charges resolved by an Islamic judge. They are unlawful sexual intercourse (adultery or sex outside marriage), falsely accusing unlawful sexual intercourse, consuming wine (sometimes all alcohol), theft and highway robbery.

Punishments ordered for hadd crimes by conservative Shariah schools — stonings, executions, amputations and beatings — shock Western sensibilities. However, Ali Mazrui, of the Institute for Global Cultural Studies, says less severe penalties are more typically imposed.

Still, Islam has not uniformly banned so-called “honor killings,” genital mutilation, pre-teen marriages, polygamy, and divorce and inheritance rules that undercut the standing of women. Testimony from non-Muslims and even Muslim women is given less weight than that of Muslim men.

The size of a country’s Islamic population and its level of religious orthodoxy typically influence the degree to which Shariah law is inculcated in national legal codes.

Conservative Muslim countries including Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Yemen and Iran declare Islam the official religion and Shariah the source of law. In more secular Muslim countries where Islamists are the minority, Shariah has gradually gained legal legitimacy through local customs. Other countries, including Turkey and Azerbaijan, enforce separation of state and religion, sometimes resulting in political clashes.

Some countries operate a dual system where Shariah is applied to family law, while secular statutes govern criminal cases. For example, Britain introduced Shariah tribunals in 2008 that apply Islamic law to inheritance, marriage and divorce disputes where the parties all agree to the jurisdiction.

SHARIAH AND THE UNITED STATES

In 2009, Dalia Mogahed, an Obama administration adviser on Muslim affairs, told a British television audience that the West misunderstands Shariah law, calling its perceptions of Islamic tenants “oversimplified.”

But deaths, abuse and threats involving Muslim women in the United States and Canada have put a Western face on facets of Shariah that had been cloaked in long-standing Middle East practices.

Pakistani-born Muzzammil Hassan was convicted in February for beheading his wife inside the Buffalo, N.Y., television studio the couple had created to promote Islamic cultural understanding. Jurors didn’t buy Hassan’s story that he suffered spousal abuse and killed his wife in self-defense. Hassan had been served with divorce papers the week before, and his children testified he had been the abuser in the couple’s relationship.

In 2008, a New Jersey judge ruled Shariah permitted a Moroccan man to rape his Muslim wife, despite state law making it a crime. The New Jersey Appeals Court overturned that decision and remanded the case, finally allowing the woman to get a restraining order against her husband while she sought a divorce. The appeals court decision said neither Shariah law, giving a husband physical authority over his wife, nor Muslim beliefs on the role of women provided the man an exemption from criminal intent under U.S. statutes.

“[T]he [trial] judge determined to except defendant from the operation of the State’s statutes as a result of his religious beliefs,” the appeals judges wrote. “In doing so, the judge was mistaken.”
Irfan Aleem went to a Pakistani embassy and performed talaq in 2007, exercising Shariah provisions that he said allowed him to divorce his wife Farah by proclaiming his intention three times. Although married several decades earlier in Pakistan, the couple had lived in Maryland for 20 years. Irfan said Shariah allowed Farah no claim on a lucrative pension he would receive from his job with the World Bank.

Maryland judges didn’t agree, ruling the Shariah practices were “contrary to public policy of this state.” The decision set aside the divorce Irfan had quickly proclaimed and afforded Farah a right to claim marital property in a Maryland divorce.

The deaths of at least 10 women in the United States and Canada have been linked to so-called Islamic “honor killings” in the last seven years.

In 2004, a 14-year-old girl who had been raped in Newfoundland was strangled by her father and brother to “restore the family honor.” A 20-year-old daughter of Afghan parents was shot dead in 2006, allegedly because she had moved in with her fiancé before their wedding. The killer was her brother.

In Ontario, a 16-year-old was stabbed to death in 2007 by her father while her mother held her down. The teenager had reportedly fought with her parents over wearing a hijib, a Muslim head covering. In another Canadian case, three teenage girls were drowned in their father’s car in 2009. Also found dead was their father’s first wife, who relatives say he never divorced. The father, his current wife and the girls’ 18-year-old brother were all charged with first-degree murder. Relatives told the media the killings were precipitated by one daughter’s dating decisions.

A Muslim father in Texas shot his two teenage daughters, Amina and Sarah Said, to death in January 2008. The murders allegedly were prompted by the girls having “unsanctioned boyfriends.” Later that year, a Pakistani man beat his 25-year-old daughter to death in Atlanta, reportedly because she opposed her arranged marriage.

Rifqa Bary, an Ohio teenager, made headlines in 2009 when she fled to Florida and foster care, saying she feared she would be the victim of a Muslim “honor killing” for her decision to convert to Christianity. She continued her religious choice a year later when she turned 18.

In a situation much like the 2008 Muslim assassination order against Danish cartoonist Kurt Westergaard, Seattle cartoonist Molly Norris went into hiding at the FBI’s recommendation last spring after her “Everybody Draw Mohammed Day” hit Facebook. A Seattle newspaper said Norris is “essentially wiping away her identity” in reaction to a fatwa urging her killing issued by Anwar al-Awlaki, the radical Muslim cleric connected to the Fort Hood killings, the attempted Christmas Day airline bombing over Detroit and the failed Times Square bombing.

And in February, radical Muslims announced plans to take their demand for American Shariah to the White House, calling for thousands of Islamists to rally on Pennsylvania Avenue March 3. But just hours before the rally was scheduled to begin, its organizer, British Muslim cleric Anjem Choudary, called it off, alleging the cause had been “distorted by the media.”

Choudary said the demonstration was merely “postponed until we gather even more Muslims;” no new rally date was announced.

In an online video statement, Choudary said Muslims are obligated to implement Shariah law “immediately, wherever we are in the world,” and he said America can reverse “poverty, child abuse, rape, robberies, theft, crime and anarchy-type scenarios” only after the United States embraces the Islamic code for living. In the meantime, Choudary predicted “the dollar will soon lose its status.”

“We believe the whole of the world must be under Shariah,” Choudary said. “America is not blessed by God. The American dream has become a nightmare.”

Other elements of America’s Shariah debate are more nuanced. Some, like CBSNews.com’s political reporter Brian Montopoli, believe Shariah fears are “overblown at best,” and Jeffry Goldberg, The Atlantic’s national correspondent, said, “A Martian takeover of New Jersey is more likely than the imposition of a caliphate, or of Muslim law, on America.”

Ibrahim Hooper, a spokesman for CAIR, says the enjoined Oklahoma amendment is “an indication of growing anti-Muslim sentiment.” Hooper said CAIR has “not found any conflict between what a Muslim needs to do to practice their faith and the Constitution or any other American laws. We are, in fact, relying on the Constitution as our last line of defense.”

But conservative Jewish blogger Pamela Geller delivers an aggressive “creeping Shariah” warning: “It’s a drip, drip, drip, drip, drip. [In] the mosqueing of the workplace where you’re imposing prayer times on union contracts, non-Muslim workers have to lengthen their day. It’s wrong.”

Consider the political reaction Americans would have seen if these Muslim accommodations had instead been made for Christians:

* The Christian Science Monitor reported a California elementary school made accommodations when it absorbed Muslim students from a shuttered charter school, including revising its instructional schedule to add a 15-minute “recess” after lunch to allow Muslim students to pray in a separate room. The school district’s attorney defended it, saying “the Muslim faith requires specificity of prayer obligations … that most other religions do not,” a claim questioned by even some Muslims. Pork also was removed from school-lunch menus, according to media reports.

* In Massachusetts, where a firehouse was ordered to take down a “Merry Christmas” greeting, public middle school students took a “cultural diversity” field trip to a local mosque, where the boys participated in Islamic prayers while girls were excluded.

These public school incidents are not isolated instances.

Try getting Christian prayer in any school and have the ACLU all over you….but nothing is said re; Muslim special privilege.

* Starting about two years ago, school attorneys have been asking more and more questions about accommodations for Muslim students,” said Lisa Soronen, senior staff attorney for the National School Boards Association.

* Four Christian evangelists attending a July Muslim cultural festival in Dearborn, Mich., were arrested for “disorderly conduct to ensure they did not provoke violence from others attending,” according to a Detroit media report. The four said they were attempting to engage in a dialogue about faith. Shariah law prohibits Christians from engaging Muslims about Christianity.

* The University of Michigan-Dearborn, where about 10 percent of students are Muslim, spent $25,000 to install two foot-washing stations on campus to accommodate ablutions before Islamic daily prayers. The university said it is one of about 18 U.S. higher education institutions providing the unusual facilities, calling its decision “a reflection of our values of respect, tolerance, and safe accommodation of student needs.”

The Michigan Civil Liberties Union mounted no challenge, saying the foot baths have “no [religious] symbolic value.”

“They’re in a regular restroom and could be just as useful to a janitor filling up buckets, or someone coming off the basketball court as to Muslim students,” said Kary Moss, MCLU director.

* Thomas More Law Center, a conservative, public-interest law firm headquartered in Michigan, is challenging the constitutionality of federal bailout money to investment firm AIG, claiming AIG’s involvement in Shariah-compliant financing violated the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause. A federal district judge in Michigan ruled that despite the fact the bailout gave the federal government an 80 percent ownership in AIG, there was no evidence the government’s money had funded “religious indoctrination.” And if there were evidence, the court said the $153 million of federal bailout money used to support Shariah compliance was an insignificant portion of the total $47.5 billion the government provided AIG.

That ruling is being appealed.

THE POWER OF MONEY

Conservative author Dick Morris says airplanes may have taken down the Twin Towers, but he predicts Shariah-compliant investing of billions in Western financial markets has the potential to “hijack our institutions, our social policies and ultimately our values in the name of Islamic rule.”

Huge oil profits and unease with their own Middle Eastern financial institutions brought Islamic investors to Wall Street in the 1990s in search of special funds that would meet Shariah restrictions. But it was complicated turf for bankers who knew investing but not Shariah.

Enter Sheikh Muhammad Taqi Usmani, a former Pakistani Shariah Appellate Court justice, hired by Dow Jones in 1999 to help establish a process that could attract trillions of investment dollars, generating handsome commissions and agency earnings.

In just a decade, most major U.S. and European investment firms have retained Shariah advisors and paid them millions. Those advisors assure Muslim investors their gains are not connected to interest charges, pork farming, alcohol, pornography or Western defense industries — all activities prohibited by Shariah.

But are those adviser fees — paid to highly placed Muslims — or the billions of dollars in “donations” financial institutions must contribute to specified Islamic “charities” in exchange for an investment’s Shariah stamp of approval actually bankrolling deadly extremist activities? Morris followed the money in his 2009 book “Catastrophe,” reporting that the U.S. government shut down at least three of the largest charities for financing terrorism.

In a 2008 article titled “Jihad Comes to Wall Street,” Alex Alexiev, vice president for research at the Center for Security Policy, called Shariah-compliant investing “an essential part of radical Islam’s efforts to insinuate itself into Western societies in order to destroy them from within.”

It’s also been a bumpy road for some of those hired consultants. Dow Jones severed ties with Usmani after the Center for Security Policy detailed some of Usmani’s writings, including one that urged Muslims living in the West to “conduct violent Jihad against the infidels at every opportunity.”

The CSP identified another paid Shariah investment advisor, Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, as a member of the Muslim Brotherhood.

According to Morris, Shariah-compliant funds must donate a small percentage of annual earnings to Islamic charities designated by the advisory boards. Those amounts are not inconsequential. For example, a typical 2.5 percent contribution can amount to billions of dollars.

And if a Shariah-compliant fund is found to have earnings from an outlawed investment activity, the advisors can “purify” those gains by donating more to the approved charities. Morris calls some of the charities “thinly veiled fronts for terrorist organizations such as Hamas and Hezbollah.”

Is the lure of trillions of dollars from Muslim portfolios strong enough to open civil law to expanding Shariah influences?

Consider Great Britain where, just a few years ago, then-Prime Minister Gordon Brown said he wanted London to become the world’s Islamic-finance capital. Britain’s most senior judge subsequently proclaimed the country’s Muslims can use “Islamic legal principles” as long as the punishments and divorce rulings comply with English law.

According to Morris, that’s already made U.K. Muslims eligible for extra benefits if they have more than one wife, even though polygamy — allowed under Shariah law — is illegal in Britain.

TOLERANCE: AN ASSET OR A WEDGE?

Janet Levy, a prolific writer on Islam and national security, asks why Islam “is sacred, supreme and beyond reproach” in the United States, while other religions are “freely criticized, lampooned in cartoons and denigrated in artwork?” She concludes America is already embracing de facto Shariah law.

“Our uniquely American virtues of tolerance and freedom have worked against us to produce intolerance and oppression,” Levy says. “This has led to the stealthy introduction of Shariah law and a climate in which criticisms of Mohammed and Islam are no longer possible without serious repercussions.”

Are political correctness and moves to cool the osmosis of the American melting pot fundamentally changing us? Is the arena of ideas — where Americans have historically tested competing beliefs — being shut down so as not to offend?

Recall 1960 when Americans considered it fair game to question Democrat John F. Kennedy about whether he would look first to his Catholicism or to the Constitution in making presidential decisions. Former Massachusetts Republican Gov. Mitt Romney’s Mormon faith has come under scrutiny during his political campaigns, sans shouts of profiling.

European nations that have led the West’s embrace of Shariah law have recently begun to retreat from their policies of “multiculturalism,” suggesting failure to maintain a single national identity has actually cultivated Islamic extremism in countries like Britain.

In a February speech at the Munich Security Conference, British Prime Minister David Cameron argued European “multiculturalism has been a failure” that’s fostered Islamic extremism, adding that the West has been “cautious, frankly even fearful” of standing up to it.

“We have even tolerated these segregated communities behaving in ways that run completely counter to our values,” Cameron said. “This hands-off tolerance has only served to reinforce the sense that not enough is shared. … What we see — and what we see in so many European countries — is a process of radicalization.”

Something also gets jumbled in the translation when East/West cultures talk about democracy and its relationship with religion.

In 2008 polling conducted by the University of Maryland’s Program on International Policy Attitudes, 82 percent of Egyptians said a democratic political system should govern their nation. At the same time, 73 percent said they supported stronger application of Islamic law in Egypt.

Of those, 68 percent said Egypt’s government should apply Shariah law to regulate moral behavior; 64 percent supported using traditional punishments like stoning for adulterers; 62 percent want the government to police women’s dress; and 59 percent said Shariah rules should be used to provide for Egypt’s poor.

So what does this all mean for Shariah in America?

The U.S. Constitution does not assign superiority to a particular religion. However, the idea that liberty is man’s God-given — not government-granted — right is a Judeo-Christian principle. America is exceptional because the people — regardless of how or whether they embrace God — allow government limited power.

America does not vest all authority in a theocratic government, where law and even daily life is dictated by a single religious code. But that does not mean the United States is Islamophobic, says New Jersey blogger George Berkin.

“[S]upporting the [Oklahoma amendment] does not make one anti-Islamic. But not being anti-Islamic does not mean that we should not insist that American legal principles — not foreign ones — apply here.”

Kathy Jessup is an award-winning, veteran journalist in Michigan whose writing career has focused on government, politics and criminal justice.

This article appeared March 24th, 2011 in Townhall Magazine,
http://www.israelunitycoalition.org/news/?p=6533

Does anyone read the U.S. Constitution these days?

September 6, 2010

Very interesting …either they don’t or can’t read or worse just ignore or more likely think they are above the Constitution…..  Another “Must Read
This was sent to me by a fellow Oath Keeper, who lives in Maine near the Canadian border.

U.S. Constitution saves the day! Why won’t the feds read the constitution before they file a lawsuit against a sovereign state?

Explosive evidence shows ruling of AZ judge illegal…

July 31, 10:07 AM Conservative Examiner Anthony G. Martin

In a stunning development that could potentially send the nation into a Constitutional crisis, an astute attorney who is well-versed in Constitutional law states that the ruling against the state of Arizona by Judge Susan Bolton concerning its new immigration law is illegal.

(Daniel Bayer/CBS News via Getty Images)
The inept U.S. Attorney-General Eric Holder.

The attorney in question submitted her assertion in a special article in the Canada Free Press.  Her argument states in part, “Does anyone read the U.S. Constitution these days?  American lawyers don’t read it.  Federal Judge Susan R. Bolton apparently has never read it. Same goes for our illustrious Attorney General Eric Holder.  But this lawyer has read it and she is going to show you something in Our Constitution which is as plain as the nose on your face.

“Article III, Sec. 2, clause 2 of our Constitution says:

“In all cases affecting Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, and those in which a State shall be Party, the Supreme Court shall have original jurisdiction.  In all the other cases before mentioned, the Supreme Court shall have appellate jurisdiction.”

In other words, the Judge in the Arizona case has absolutely no Constitutional jurisdiction over the matter upon which she ruled.  As the Constitution makes abundantly clear, only the U.S. Supreme Court can issue rulings that involve a state.

This means that neither Judge Bolton nor the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, to which the case is being appealed, have any legal standing whatsoever to rule on the issue.

Thus, U.S. Attorney-General Eric Holder filed the federal government’s lawsuit against the state of Arizona in a court that has no authority to hear the case.

The attorney whose heads-up thinking concerning the Constitution provides the legal remedy for dealing with this blatant disregard for Constitutional law in the article at Canada Free Press.

In a related development, another explosive discovery was made by those who actually take the Constitution seriously.  The Constitution specifically allows an individual state to wage war against a neighboring country in the event of an invasion, should there be a dangerous delay or inaction on the part of the Federal Government. This information was cited by United Patriots of America.

From Article I, Section 10 of the U.S. Constitution, we find these words:

“No State shall, without the Consent of Congress, engage in War, unless actually invaded, or in such imminent danger as will not admit of delay.”

No one who is actually familiar with the crisis at the southern border can deny that Arizona is endangered by the relentless assault of lawless Mexican invaders who ignore our laws, inundate our schools and medical facilities with unpaid bills, and even endanger the very lives of citizens with criminal drug cartels that engage in kidnapping, murder, 115 bodies recovered in AZ entry routes, human trafficking, and other mayhem, including aiming missile and grenade launchers directly at U.S. border cities from just across the Mexican border.

This is as much of an invasion as the nation of Iran sending in a fleet of warships to the Port of Charleston.

The Constitution that forms the basis of the rule of law in this country says that Arizona has legal right to protect itself in the case of inaction or delay on the part of the federal government, including waging war in its self-defense.

This, when coupled with the clear Constitutional mandate that only the Supreme Court hear cases involving the states, should be ample legal basis for attorneys representing Arizona to go after the federal government with a vengeance.

Governor Jan Brewer and the stalwart members of the Arizona legislature have ample legal reason to stand firm against the illegal bullying of an arrogant, lawless federal government.

This missive must be circulated around the USA; we must all get involved this is OUR case too.

“The law is reason free from passion.” Aristotle

Six Boys And Thirteen Hands…

July 13, 2010

The Boys of Iwo Jima
(From the book: Heart Touchers “Life-Changing Stories of Faith, Love, and Laughter)

by Michael T. Powers

Each year my video production company is hired to go to Washington, D.C. with the eighth grade class from Clinton, Wisconsin where I grew up, to videotape their trip. I greatly enjoy visiting our nation’s capitol, and each year I take some special memories back with me. This fall’s trip was especially memorable.

On the last night of our trip, we stopped at the Iwo Jima memorial. This memorial is the largest bronze statue in the world and depicts one of the most famous photographs in history — that of the six brave men raising the American flag at the top of Mount Surabachi on the Island of Iwo Jima, Japan during WW II. Over one hundred students and chaperones piled off the buses and headed towards the memorial. I noticed a solitary figure at the base of the statue, and as I got closer he asked, “What’s your name and where are you guys from?

I told him that my name was Michael Powers and that we were from Clinton, Wisconsin.

“Hey, I’m a Cheesehead, too! Come gather around Cheeseheads, and I will tell you a story.”

James Bradley just happened to be in Washington, D.C. to speak at the memorial the following day. He was there that night to say good-night to his dad, who had previously passed away, but whose image is part of the statue. He was just about to leave when he saw the buses pull up. I videotaped him as he spoke to us, and received his permission to share what he said from my videotape. It is one thing to tour the incredible monuments filled with history in Washington, D.C. but it is quite another to get the kind of insight we received that night. When all had gathered around he reverently began to speak. Here are his words from that night:

“My name is James Bradley and I’m from Antigo, Wisconsin. My dad is on that statue, and I just wrote a book called Flags of Our Fathers which is #5 on the New York Times Best Seller list right now. It is the story of the six boys you see behind me. Six boys raised the flag. The first guy putting the pole in the ground is Harlon Block. Harlon was an all-state football player. He enlisted in the Marine Corps with all the senior members of his football team. They were off to play another type of game, a game called “War.” But it didn’t turn out to be a game.

Harlon, at the age of twenty-one, died with his intestines in his hands. I don’t say that to gross you out; I say that because there are generals who stand in front of this statue and talk about the glory of war. You guys need to know that most of the boys in Iwo Jima were seventeen, eighteen, and nineteen years old.

(He pointed to the statue)

You see this next guy? That’s Rene Gagnon from New Hampshire. If you took Rene’s helmet off at the moment this photo was taken, and looked in the webbing of that helmet, you would find a photograph. A photograph of his girlfriend. Rene put that in there for protection, because he was scared. He was eighteen years old. Boys won the battle of Iwo Jima. Boys. Not old men.

The next guy here, the third guy in this tableau, was Sergeant Mike Strank. Mike is my hero. He was the hero of all these guys. They called him the “old man” because he was so old. He was already twenty-four. When Mike would motivate his boys in training camp, he didn’t say, “Let’s go kill the enemy” or “Let’s die for our country.” He knew he was talking to little boys. Instead he would say, “You do what I say, and I’ll get you home to your mothers.”

The last guy on this side of the statue is Ira Hayes, a Pima Indian from Arizona. Ira Hayes walked off Iwo Jima. He went into the White House with my dad. President Truman told him, “You’re a hero.” He told reporters, “How can I feel like a hero when 250 of my buddies hit the island with me and only twenty-seven of us walked off alive?”

So you take your class at school. 250 of you spending a year together having fun, doing everything together. Then all 250 of you hit the beach, but only twenty-seven of your classmates walk off alive. That was Ira Hayes. He had images of horror in his mind. Ira Hayes died dead drunk, face down at the age of thirty-two, ten years after this picture was taken.

The next guy, going around the statue, is Franklin Sousley from Hilltop, Kentucky, a fun-lovin’ hillbilly boy. His best friend, who is now 70, told me, “Yeah, you know, we took two cows up on the porch of the Hilltop General Store. Then we strung wire across the stairs so the cows couldn’t get down. Then we fed them Epson salts. Those cows crapped all night.”

Yes, he was a fun-lovin’ hillbilly boy. Franklin died on Iwo Jima at the age of nineteen. When the telegram came to tell his mother that he was dead, it went to the Hilltop General Store. A barefoot boy ran that telegram up to his mother’s farm. The neighbors could hear her scream all night and into the morning. The neighbors lived a quarter of a mile away.

The next guy, as we continue to go around the statue, is my dad, John Bradley from Antigo, Wisconsin, where I was raised. My dad lived until 1994, but he would never give interviews. When Walter Kronkite’s producers, or the New York Times would call, we were trained as little kids to say, “No, I’m sorry sir, my dad’s not here. He is in Canada fishing. No, there is no phone there, sir. No, we don’t know when he is coming back.”

My dad never fished or even went to Canada. Usually he was sitting right there at the table eating his Campbell’s soup, but we had to tell the press that he was out fishing. He didn’t want to talk to the press. You see, my dad didn’t see himself as a hero. Everyone thinks these guys are heroes, ’cause they are in a photo and a monument. My dad knew better. He was a medic. John Bradley from Wisconsin was a caregiver. In Iwo Jima he probably held over 200 boys as they died, and when boys died in Iwo Jima, they writhed and screamed in pain.

When I was a little boy, my third grade teacher told me that my dad was a hero. When I went home and told my dad that, he looked at me and said, “I want you always to remember that the heroes of Iwo Jima are the guys who did not come back. DID NOT come back.”

So that’s the story about six nice young boys. Three died on Iwo Jima, and three came back as national heroes. Overall, 7000 boys died on Iwo Jima in the worst battle in the history of the Marine Corps. My voice is giving out, so I will end here. Thank you for your time.”

Suddenly the monument wasn’t just a big old piece of metal with a flag sticking out of the top. It came to life before our eyes with the heartfelt words of a son who did indeed have a father who was a hero. Maybe not a hero in his own eyes, but a hero nonetheless.

Michael T. Powers
HeartTouchers@aol.com

Copyright © 2000 by Michael T. Powers

Write Michael and let him know your thoughts on this story!

Michael T. Powers, the founder of HeartTouchers.com and Heart4Teens.com, is the youth minister at Faith Community Church in Janesville, Wisconsin. He is happily married to his high school sweetheart Kristi and proud father of three young rambunctious boys.

He is also an author with stories in 29 inspirational books including many in the Chicken Soup for the Soul series and his own entitled: Heart Touchers “Life-Changing Stories of Faith, Love, and Laughter.” To preview his book or to join the thousands of world wide readers on his inspirational e-mail list, visit: http://www.HeartTouchers.com
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[Editor’s Note] This story is posted with the permission and courtesy of the author, Michael T. Powers.

(This is not part of the article but was added in the email story that I received) One thing I learned while on tour with my 8th grade students in DC that is not mentioned here is… that if you look at the statue very closely and count the number of ‘hands’ raising the flag, there are 13. When the man who made the statue was asked why there were 13, he simply said the 13th hand was the hand of God.

We need to remember that God created this vast and glorious world for us to live in, freely, but also at great sacrifice.

Let us never forget from the Revolutionary War to the current War on Terrorism and all the wars in-between that great sacrifices were made for our freedom… Remember to pray for this great country of ours and for those still in conflict around the world. Pray also for all our servicemen and women around the world.

God Bless You and God Bless America.

Everyday that you can wake up free, it’s going to be a great day.

Arizona State Senator Sylvia Allen explains SB 1070

May 15, 2010

I’m Arizona State Senator Sylvia Allen. I want to explain SB 1070 which I voted for and was just signed by Governor Jan Brewer.

Rancher Rob Krantz was murdered by the drug cartel on his ranch a month ago. I participated in a senate hearing two weeks ago on the border violence; here are just some of the highlights from those who testified.

The people who live within 60 to 80 miles of the Arizona/Mexico Border have for years been terrorized and have pleaded for help to stop the daily invasion of humans who cross their property. One rancher testified that 300 to 1200 people a DAY come across his ranch vandalizing his property, stealing his vehicles and property, cutting down his fences, and leaving trash. In the last two years he has found 17 dead bodies and two Koran bibles.

Another rancher testified that drugs are brought across his ranch daily in a military operation. A point man with a machine gun goes in front, 1/2 mile behind are the guards fully armed, 1/2 mile behind them are the drugs, behind the drugs 1/2 mile are more guards. These people are violent and they will kill anyone who gets in the way. This was not the only rancher we heard that day that talked about the drug trains.

One man told of two illegals who came upon his property one shot in the back and the other in the arm by the drug runners who had forced them to carry the drugs and then shot them. Daily they listen to gunfire during the night it is not safe to leave his family alone on the ranch and they can’t leave the ranch for fear of nothing being left when they come back.

The border patrol is not on the border. They have set up 60 miles away with check points that do nothing to stop the invasion. They are not allowed to use force in stopping anyone who is entering. They run around chasing them, if they get their hands on them then they can take them back across the border.

Federal prisons have over 35% illegals and 20% of Arizona prisons are filled with illegals. In the last few years 80% of our law enforcement that have been killed or wounded has been by an illegal.

The majority of people coming now are people we need to be worried about. The ranchers told us that they have seen a change in the people coming; they are not just those who are looking for work and a better life.

The Federal Government has refused for years to do anything to help the border states. We have been overrun and once they are here we have the burden of funding state services that they use. Education costs have been over a billion dollars. The healthcare costs billions of dollars. Our State is broke; $3.5 billion deficit and we have many serious decisions to make. One is that we do not have the money to care for any who are not here legally. It has to stop.

The border can be secured. We have the technology we have the ability to stop this invasion. We must know who is coming and they must come in an organized manner legally so that we can assimilate them into our population and protect the sovereignty of our country. We are a nation of laws. We have a responsibility to protect our citizens and to protect the integrity of our country and the government which we live under.

I would give amnesty today to many, but here is the problem, we dare not do this until the Border is secure. It will do no good to forgive them because thousands will come behind them and we will be overrun to the point that there will no longer be the United States of America but a North American Union of open borders. I ask you what form of government will we live under? How long will it be before we will be just like Mexico, Canada or any of the other Central American or South American countries? We have already lost our language; everything must be printed in Spanish also. We have already lost our history it is no longer taught in our schools. And we have lost our borders.

The leftist media has distorted what SB 1070 will do. It is not going to set up a Nazi Germany. Are you kidding? The ACLU and the leftist courts will do everything to protect those who are here illegally, but it was an effort to try and stop illegals from setting up businesses, and employment, and receiving state services and give the ability to local law enforcement when there is probable cause like a traffic stop to determine if they are here legally. Federal law is very clear if you are here on a visa you must have your papers on you at all times. That is the law. In Arizona all you need to show you are a legal citizen is a driver license, MVD identification card, Native American Card, or a Military ID. This is what you need to vote, get a hunting license, etc…  So nothing new has been added to this law. No one is going to be stopped walking down the street etc… The Socialists who are in power in DC are angry because we dare try and do something and that something the Socialists wants us to do is just let them come. They want the “Transformation” to continue.

Maybe it is too late to save America. Maybe we are not worthy of freedom anymore. But as an elected official I must try to do what I can to protect our Constitutional Republic. Living in America is not a right just because you can walk across the border. Being an American is a responsibility and it comes by respecting and upholding the Constitution the law of our land which says what you must do to be a citizen of this country. Freedom is not free.

Barack Hussein Obama: I Told You So – Yes I Did – By Howard Galganov

January 10, 2010

Ever wonder why we have to depend on the foreign press to find out what’s “really” going on in our own country. It’s a good thing that Obama and the democrats don’t own the Canadian press. Here is what Howard Galganov predicts for Barack Hussein Obama – PLEASE READ:
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Barack Hussein Obama: I Told You So – Yes I Did

By Howard Galganov
Montreal, Quebec, Canada

23 July 2009

When Obama won the Presidency with the help of the LEFTIST Media, Hollywood And Entertainment Liberals, Ethnic Socialists (ACORN), Stupid Non-Business Professionals and Bush Haters, I wrote: It won’t take six months until the people figure this guy out and realize how horrible a
mistake they’ve made
. And when they come to that realization, the damage to the United States of America will be so great it will take a generation or more to repair – IF EVER.

The IDIOTS who not only voted for the Messiah, but also worked [hard] to promote his Lordship, are now left holding the bag.

Here are two things they will NEVER do: They will NEVER admit to making a blunder out of all proportion by electing a snake-oil salesman with no positive social history or management experience of any kind. They will NEVER take responsibility for the curse they’ve imposed upon the immediate and long-term future of their country.

In essence, the people responsible for putting this horror show in power are themselves responsible for every cataclysmic decision he makes and the consequences thereof.

In just six months, the Messiah’s polls are showing the following: On Healthcare Reform – He’s going under for the third time with polling well under 50 percent, even within his own Party. Even though he might be able to Muscle a Healthcare Reform Bill by using Chicago BULLY tactics against his Fellow Democrats, it will just make things worse.  On Cap and Trade (Cap and Tax) – The Fat-Lady is already singing. On the Stimulus Package (Tax and Spend) – His popularity is in FREE-FALL. On the TARP package he took and ran with from President Bush – It’s all but Good-Night Irene. On the closing of GITMO and “HIS” war on what he no longer wants called the War on Terrorism – He’s standing in quicksand with his head just about to go under.  On a comparison between himself and George W Bush at the same six months into their respective first term Presidencies – Bush is ahead of him in the Polls On a comparison between He Who Walks On Water and the 12 preceding Presidents between WW II and now – Obama ranks 10th.

On a Poll just conducted, that asks who would you vote for today between Obama and Mitt Romney – It’s a dead heat. [2010 – If this poll were taken today, I believe it would be unquestionably a majority for Romney]  Between Obama and Palin – Obama’s ONLY ahead by 8 Points and she hasn’t even begun to campaign. It seems to me that Obama wants to be everywhere where he shouldn’t be.

He’s personally invested in ‘totally insulting’ America’s ONLY REAL Middle Eastern ally (Israel) in favor of Palestinian Despots and Murderers.  He’s traveling the world apologizing for the USA while lecturing others on how to do it right, when in fact and truth he has no experience at doing anything other than getting elected.

He went to the Moslem world in Egypt to declare that America IS NOT A CHRISTIAN NATION while he heaped praises on Islam, where he compared the “plight” of the Palestinians to the Holocaust.

The Russians think he’s a putz, The French think he’s rude. The Germans want him to stop spending. The Indians want him to keep his nose out of their environmental business. The North Koreans think he’s a joke, The Iranians won’t acknowledge his calls. And the British can’t even come up with a comprehensive opinion of him. As for the Chinese, he’s too frightened to even glance their way. [After All, China now owns a large portion of the United States.]

Maybe if America’s first Emperor would stay home more, travel less, and work a little bit instead of being on television just about everyday or stop running to “papered” Town Hall Meetings, perhaps he would have a little bit of time to do the work of the nation.

In all fairness, it wasn’t HARD to be RIGHT in my prediction concerning Obama’s presidency, even in its first six months, so I’m going to make yet another prediction:

OBAMA WILL PROBABLY NOT FINISH HIS 4-YEAR TERM, at least not in a conventional way.

He is such a political HORROR SHOW, and so detrimental to the USA and his Own Democratic Party, that the Democrats themselves will either FORCE him to resign or figure out a way to have him thrown out.

Who knows, maybe he really isn’t a US BORN Citizen and that’s a way the Democrats will be able to get rid of him. [He is a citizen, but not a naturalized citizen with both mother and father being US citizens.]

Or – MORE LIKELY THAN NOT, the Democrats will make Obama THEIR OWN LAME DUCK PRESIDENT.

I don’t believe the Democrats have nearly as much love for their country as they do for their own political fortunes. And with Obama, their fortunes are rapidly becoming toast.


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