Monday, December 30, 2013

We've become a nation of blue and red states under President Obama

(My new American Thinker post)

We all remember candidate Obama's speeches and promises to unite the nation:
"As he climbed the political heap, a young Barack Obama roused audiences with promises to unite the nation. He was a Senate candidate in 2004 when he told the Democratic national convention, "There is not a liberal America and a conservative America. There is a United States of America."   
In 2007, he declared early in his presidential run that "I don't want to pit red America against blue America. I want to be the president of the United States of America."  
A year later, after he won the Iowa caucus, he promised, "We are not a collection of red states and blue states. We are the United States of America."  And on the November night in 2008 when he was elected president, he insisted his victory proved "we have never been just a collection of individuals or a collection of red states and blue states. We are, and always will be, the United States of America."  (Goodwin)
In reality, we are the United States of America but we are not very united.

There are two reasons, in my opinion.

The first one is that President Obama has been a very divisive political figure.   We recall President Bush, Clinton, Bush, Reagan, et al, sitting down with the other side to find some common ground.  Instead, President Obama said "we won"!

The second reason for the polarization is the political reality in the states, as Dan Balz explained over the weekend:
"Republican states have pursued economic and fiscal strategies built around lower taxes, deeper spending cuts and less regulation. They have declined to set up state health-insurance exchanges to implement President Obama's Affordable Care Act. They have clashed with labor unions. On social issues, they have moved to restrict abortion rights or to enact voter-identification laws, in the name of ballot integrity, that critics say hamper access to voting for the poor and minorities. 
Blue states have also been forced to cut spending, given the budgetary pressures caused by the recession. But rather than cutting more deeply, a number of them also have raised taxes to pay for education or infrastructure. They have backed the president on the main elements of his health-care law. The social-issue agenda in blue states includes legalizing same-sex marriages, providing easier access to voting and, in a handful of cases, imposing more restrictions on guns."
My guess is that the divisions will continue.  However, people will have the last political word.  They will move to red or blue states and increase the electoral vote of that state in presidential elections. So far, the reds seem to be winning that movement

Last, but not least, there is nothing wrong with states going in different directions.  It creates laboratories for ideas, something I'd wish we had done  with healthcare. 

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Habana vs Almendares: A little “beisbol” in Cuba


(My new Babalu post)

We remember an important anniversary in Cuban baseball

 "On December 29, 1878, the first game is played between two teams of the first professional baseball league in Cuba, later known as the Cuban League. Representing the city of Havana, the Habana club faced off against their greatest rivals, a club from the neighboring suburb of Almendares. Habana, coached by Esteban Bellán, the first Cuban to play professional baseball in the United States, won that inaugural game 21-20." 

The first game eventually turned into the very successful Almendares-Habana rivalry, the Cuban version of the Yankees-Red Sox story. Eventually, there was a winter league with teams like Marianao and Cienfuegos.  

It all started today in 1878!

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Sunday, December 29, 2013

"No Che Day" with Carlos Eire & Humberto Fontova




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Saturday, December 28, 2013

Mexico leads the way with PEMEX reforms in 2013

(My new American Thinker post)

The big "happy story" of Latin America is Mexico, and its PEMEX reforms.

As Andres Oppenheimmer reports, "El pacto de Mexico" will not be easy because the left will do everything possible to make life miserable for the reformers.  The good news is that the left in Mexico is loud but it does not win national elections. 

Nevertheless, Mexico has demonstrated that reform can happen, especially when you have a leader who wants to lead.   

This is a list of "reforms" in Mexico, again from the aforementioned Mr Oppenheimer via Fausta's Blog:    

Education reform:  Mexico's political parties passed a law in September that will break the country's once almighty teachers unions' control over the education system and will allow for the first time the hiring, promotion and even firing of new teachers based on standardized tests and periodic evaluations. Until now, Mexico had thousands of teachers who couldn't be fired even if they failed to show up in class.    

Political reform: Mexico's Congress agreed to change electoral rules to allow future members of Congress to be re-elected and to reserve half of congressional seats for female candidates. Re-election of legislators had been a long-sought demand by citizens' groups, which complained that, without re-election, Mexican legislators were not accountable to their constituents, but rather to their parties' bosses.   

Fiscal reform: The Mexican Congress, with major backing from the left-of-center Party for the Democratic Revolution, passed a fiscal law that will raise taxes on the wealthiest and impose a new tax on soft drinks and stock market gains.    

Labor reform: In the biggest labor law shakeup in four decades, Mexico's Congress passed a law aimed at making it easier for employers to hire and fire workers. The new law's intent is to drive millions of people out of the underground economy. 

Telecommunications reform: Under the new law, two new regulating agencies will try to bring about more competition in the telecommunications industry, which has been dominated by companies owned by billionaire Carlos Slim.   

Energy reform: By far the most covered by foreign media, Mexico's new energy reform will change the Constitution to allow private firms to work with the giant state-owned Pemex oil company in the exploration and drilling of new fields. The constitutional overhaul is expected to bring billions of dollars in foreign investments over the next decade.   

"Mexico has proved capable of doing the politically impossible," Mexican Congressman David Penchyna, who heads the congressional Energy Committee, wrote in the daily newspaper Reforma this week. "We have opened a new page in history."   

My opinion: It is too early to tell whether Mexico's 2013 reforms will indeed turn the country into the new star of the emerging world. Much of it will depend on whether Peña Nieto is able to keep the new laws from being watered down by special interests in the implementation process.  But Mexico has given the Americas a lesson in civility, which many countries in the hemisphere would do well to emulate.   

Wouldn't it be great to see a Pact for Argentina, a Pact for Venezuela and a Pact for the United States 2014?   It seemed impossible in Mexico, and yet it happened."    

Again, the left will make life miserable with marches and lots of screaming.  They will say that President Pena-Nieto has "sold out" to the foreigners at the expense of Mexican sovereignty.     

Thankfully, most Mexicans, and specially the middle class, understand that PEMEX had to be reformed.   

Thumbs up to President Pena-Nieto for leading the way.    

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“Duck Dynasty”: El dinero habla y “Abuelo Duck” ganó! (Money talks and Granpa Duck won)


(My new American Thinker post)   

It took less than 2 weeks for A&E to crack:    

"The A&E channel said it’s reversing its decision to drop “Duck Dynasty” patriarch Phil Robertson from the show for his remarks about gays.    
In a statement Friday, A&E said it decided to bring Robertson back after discussions with the Robertson family and “numerous advocacy groups.”  
The channel had put Robertson on what it called “hiatus” following his comments in a magazine article about how the Bible informs his view of gays.   
His comments were slammed by groups including GLAAD, the gay media watch organization. But A&E’s decision drew a backlash from those who said they supported Robertson’s comments and others who defended him on the basis of freedom of speech."
A&E has been running show marathons for the last week, or a very funny way of showing their displeasure with Granpa Phil!
Can we now get serious and talk about real problems?      

Like violence in Venezuela?    

"The Venezuelan Violence Observatory estimates that 24,763 killings occurred this year, pushing up the homicide rate to 79 per 100,000 inhabitants. It was 73 per 100,000 people in 2012. In 1998, the rate was 19."     

The latest Obama Care problems?   

"Some patients who think they have insurance may not get insurance cards on time, and they're afraid they might fall through the cracks. "
Frankly, I thought that this whole "Duck" story was an intentional distraction from the Obama Care mess and growing disillusionment with President Obama.

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Humberto Fontova and "The Bay of Pigs"




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Friday, December 27, 2013

Venezuela and "la violencia"

(My new American Thinker post)

We've read about the "Cubanization of Venezuela," such as shortages, repression and censorship of the free press.   

My friend Daniel Duquenal, who writes a blog from Venezuela, reports that "....the "official" inflation rate is above 50%, and probably around 80% in real life."  

Fausta's Blog is now calling Venezuela the next Zimbabwe!  

Add to that the country is violent - very violent.

Let's look today at the crime wave in Caracas and the country:
"A non-governmental group that tracks violent crime in Venezuela says the country's homicide rate has risen again in 2013 and has quadrupled over the past 15 years.
The Venezuelan Violence Observatory estimates that 24,763 killings occurred this year, pushing up the homicide rate to 79 per 100,000 inhabitants. It was 73 per 100,000 people in 2012. In 1998, the rate was 19.
Venezuela's government has gradually blocked access to murder statistics as violent crime has worsened the past decade. The report published Thursday was compiled by researchers based on press reports, victim surveys and comments by officials.
Interior Minister Miguel Rodriguez Torres said last week that the homicide rate has fallen this year from 50 to 39 per 100,000 inhabitants. But he declined to provide details."
Wonder why he "declined" to provide details?

Sad to say but Venezuela is falling apart.  

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Question of the year: Is anyone really insured?

(My new American Thinker post)

Like most of you, I've bought insurance policies over the years. My understanding is that you are covered after you fill out an application and pass some kind of underwriting. 

Most importantly, your application does not go to underwriting until you present the agent or company with a payment, usually the first month's premium.

We heard that many people went to the AHCA website over the last few days but some people are still in the dark, or don't know whether they have coverage or not according to CBS:
"The last minute spike in enrollments now puts pressure on insurance companies to process hundreds of thousands of new customers in a very short time. 
Karen Defnall, who runs a daycare in central Virginia, said she thought she enrolled last week, but has no confirmation from the insurance plan. She said she's now concerned she won't have proof of insurance when her coverage is supposed to begin next week.
"What if a need comes up? What if January 2, I have an injury and I have to go to the hospital? They're going to ask for insurance verification, and I don't have anything to give them," she told CBS News.
"Will I be denied coverage? Will I be denied access?"
The surge of late signups is good for those patients who finally have insurance, but it is likely that the first few weeks of Obamacare will be confusing.
Some patients who think they have insurance may not get insurance cards on time, and they're afraid they might fall through the cracks. 
This is incredibly irresponsible.  How do you expose people to that kind of uncertainty? 

Add to this is that the NY Post reports that more fees and costs are coming in 2014!  

More "unaffordability" for the Affordable Health Care Act?

Wonder what kind of investigation would follow if a private insurance company that did this to applicants? 

My guess is that there'd be bunch of state AG's and Insurance Commissioners chasing down the executives for an explanation!

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Freezing and listening to Larry Lujack on WLS-Chicago

(My new American Thinker post)


My sons don't believe that I walked home from school listening to a little transistor radio.   

"What's a transistor radio, dad"?  It's sort of like an I-Pod but the music did not sound that good but I didn't know any better. 

Yes, I did walk home and I was listening to Larry Lujack out of WLS in Chicago.  It came in very clearly on 890 AM.  My little transistor was always ready for Larry when I left school!
"First at WCFL-AM and later at WLS-AM, a clear-channel station that could be heard far beyond Chicago, Mr. Lujack -- known on the air as Uncle Lar' or Superjock -- spent 20 years spinning records and spouting opinions.  
Frequent targets of his opprobrium included the very albums he was playing, the very stations he was working for and various rival D.J.s. (Mr. Lujack once stormed a competitor's show and threatened, on the air, to ram the man's head through a wall.)   
He became famous for regular features including "Klunk Letter of the Day" and "Cheap and Trashy Showbiz Report." His best-known feature, done in collaboration with his longtime on-air partner Tommy Edwards ("Li'l Snot-Nose Tommy," Mr. Lujack fondly called him), was "Animal Stories."   "
Yes, it was the "Klunk letters" that had me holding the little transistor next to my frozen ear. 

My other favorite memory was the weekly WLS Top 30 countdown. 

I recall one day that Larry introduced The Beatles' "Lady Madonna" and wondered if Ringo was really doing the lead vocals. I screamed at the radio saying:  "No Larry, it's Paul sounding like Fats Domino".

I guess that "those were the days," another song that Larry introduced me too!

RIP Larry Lujack.  You had one Cuban kid growing up in Wisconsin listening to you every chance I got!   


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Carlos Eire: 54 years of the Castro regime




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Roberto Goizueta, Cuban American businessman




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Thursday, December 26, 2013

Remembering a couple of war heroes who died over Christmas

(My new American Thinker post)

We got the news yesterday that two war heroes of the past died over the holidays.

First, we heard about Edwin A. Shuman:
"As Christmas 1970 approached, 43 American prisoners of war in a large holding cell at the North Vietnamese camp known as the Hanoi Hilton sought to hold a brief church service. Their guards stopped them, and so the seeds of rebellion were planted. 
A few days later, Lt. Cmdr. Edwin A. Shuman III, a downed Navy pilot, orchestrated the resistance, knowing he would be the first to face the consequences: a beating in a torture cell. 
"Ned stepped forward and said, 'Are we really committed to having church Sunday? I want to know person by person,' " a fellow prisoner, Leo K. Thorsness, recounted in a memoir. "He went around the cell pointing to each of us individually," Mr. Thorsness continued. "When the 42nd man said yes, it was unanimous. At that instant, Ned knew he would end up in the torture cells."  
The following Sunday, Commander Shuman, who died on Dec. 3 at 82, stepped forward to lead a prayer session and was quickly hustled away by guards. The next four ranking officers did the same, and they, too, were taken away to be beaten. Meanwhile, as Mr. Thorsness told it, "the guards were now hitting P.O.W.s with gun butts and the cell was in chaos."  
And then, he remembered, the sixth-ranking senior officer began, "Gentlemen, the Lord's Prayer."  
"And this time," he added, "we finished it."  
The guards had yielded.  
Everett Alvarez Jr., who was the first American pilot captured in the Vietnam War when his Navy plane was shot down in 1964, said in an interview that the defiance Commander Shuman engineered was emulated by senior officers in other large holding cells.  
"It was contagious," said Mr. Alvarez, who was in another cell during the first prayer service. "By the time it got to the fourth or fifth cell," he said, the guards "gave up." He said the prisoners were also singing patriotic songs.   Commander Shuman remained incarcerated at the Hanoi Hilton for more than two more years. But by then the prisoners' right to collective prayer had been established.  
"From that Sunday on until we came home, we held a church service," Mr. Thorsness, an Air Force pilot and recipient of the Medal of Honor for heroics on a mission in 1967, wrote in his memoir, "Surviving Hell: A POW's Journey" (2008). "We won. They lost. Forty-two men in prison pajamas followed Ned's lead. I know I will never see a better example of pure raw leadership or ever pray with a better sense of the meaning of the words."
The other "war hero" was Rodolfo Hernandez of California:
"Mr. Hernandez was an Army corporal trying to hold a hill in May 1951 when his platoon was overwhelmed by attackers accompanied by heavy mortar, artillery and machine gun fire.   
Corporal Hernandez had already been struck by grenade fragments and was bleeding heavily from a head wound when his commanding officer ordered his platoon to fall back. He continued firing until his rifle malfunctioned, then threw six grenades and charged at the opposing foxholes.  
"I took my rifle and fixed the bayonet," he was quoted as saying in "Beyond Glory: Medal of Honor Heroes in Their Own Words," by Larry Smith, "and then I yelled, 'Here I come!' "  
He managed to kill six attackers before falling unconscious from grenade, bullet and bayonet wounds. His action allowed his unit to retake the hill.   Corporal Hernandez was so badly wounded that his comrades initially took him for dead. They were placing him in a body bag when someone noticed movement in his hands, said his wife, Denzil. His injuries were so extensive that he had to relearn how to walk, how to speak and how to write with his left hand (his right arm was permanently damaged).  
By the time Corporal Hernandez received the Medal of Honor from President Harry S. Truman in the White House Rose Garden on April 12, 1952, he was able to speak a few words."
We say thank you for your service.   Also, we remind the younger readers that Mr Shuman and Mr Hernandez served in unpopular wars. 

Most of the country was back here arguing about Vietnam when Mr Shuman was defying the Hanoi Hilton guards. 

Korea was also very unpopular and most of its heroes largely forgotten, as Clay Blair wrote a few years ago.

Again, thanks for their service and courage.     

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We remember President Truman and Persident Ford


We remember two amazing men who died on this day.   President Truman died in 1972 and President Ford in 2006.

VP Truman became president when President FDR died in 1945.  He was not well known and following a political giant of the 20th century.   It was President Truman who made the decision to drop nuclear bombs in Nagasaki and Hiroshima.

VP Ford became president when President Nixon resigned in 1974.  He is the only never elected to the office.  He lost to Governor Carter in 1976.  He served about 30 months but did much to restore confidence in the presidency after Watergate.  His pardon of Nixon was vindicated over time, a profile in courage!

They were both Midwestern men, of great integrity and character.




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The story of Desi Arnaz




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Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Keep Christ in Christmas..........




We wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas.

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Tuesday, December 24, 2013

A&E has a funny way of showing their displeasure with Grandpa Phil

(My new American Thinker post)

Maybe I'm cynical but is this "Grandpa Phil" controversy part of a plot to introduce millions to the "Ducks"?

This is what A&E is doing for Christmas:

"A&E may have given "Duck Dynasty" star Phil Robertson the heave-ho when they suspended him from future episodes of the show last week, but the network is still welcoming him home for holidays.  

The channel is celebrating Christmas with a staggering 25 consecutive episodes of their No. 1 show, beginning at 3:30 p.m. on Christmas Day and running until the wee hours of Dec. 26.   

According to the schedule on A&E's website, the Robertsons will take over the channel until 4 a.m., and then paid programming -meaning infomercials-will kick in."

That's a lot of "duck" for a network that finds Grandpa Phil's remarks so difficult. Are they planning to delete "Grandpa" from their show this weekend?

We hear that A&E took this "principled" decision because their "gay" staff was offended by the remarks. 

So they give us "Duck 24/7"? I guess that the "gays" at A&E have learned that "profit" means a lot more to their employer than shielding them from Louisiana "duck wood values"!

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The Three Wise Men ('Los Reyes Magos') and other Feliz Navidad thoughts

(My new American Thinker post)


Let me wish all of the staff & readers of American Thinker a very "Feliz Navidad."      

For many years, I did "father's duty" and put out the gifts after our boys had fallen asleep on Christmas Eve. They generally stayed up until the local station reported that Santa had crossed the border into Texas.

I would stay awake watching 'It's a Wonderful Life" or listening to the radio. My favorite was Radio Exterior, a Spanish short wave broadcast from Madrid that was already into Christmas Day programming because they were 7 hours ahead.

As we were opening gifts the next morning, and trying out the new baseball glove or Troy Aikman football, I would answer my sons' curiosity about my Christmas Day experiences.  I would enjoy relating about my days in Cuba and how we got our gifts on January 6th rather than December 25th morning.

Pre-communist Cuba was one of the best places in the world to celebrate "Navidad" or Christmas. The holiday was eventually outlawed by the communist regime but families still celebrated it in private and behind closed doors.

Navidad in Cuba started around mid-December when the businesses scheduled their holiday parties and the schools closed. The towns were all dressed up for the holidays. Small and large communities were totally in the holiday mood. Merchants were appreciative of your business and loyalty.

My dad was a young banker and his clients would usually send us "turron" to eat, a delicious treat from old Spain.

Once in a while, one of my dad's clients would send a "pig" ready to be roasted. It was huge and always caught the attention of yours truly, a very curious kid back then!

We had the roasted pig on "Noche Buena" or the evening of December 24th.  We had it with white rice, black beans, "yuca," avocado and my mom would always add her version of "flan," a favorite dessert.

After the meal, the family, and often lots of friends and relatives, would move to the living room.

My mom would bring my dad a little Cuban coffee and then he would light up a big cigar.

By 10 PM, all of the men were fed, smoking cigars and talking baseball.  They were talking Minoso, Pascual and about those winter league teams. They also talked politics, especially as communism began strangling Cuba. 

We ate too much and then it was off to church for the midnight mass. We walked to the parish, a good idea since we had very full stomachs and needed the exercise. (It was really at midnight back then)

On December 25th, we woke up late from the activities of the night before. As always, my mom made coffee for my dad and he was smoking another cigar.

My father's uncle (Tio Joaquin) and aunt (Tia Clara) would always have us come over to pick up Santa's gifts. My aunt had lived in the US and celebrated Santa Claus.

We were always happy to get gifts but did not understand how Santa Claus found time to visit Cuba after so much work in the US.

After December 25th, we got into "gifts or kid mode."  They were the happiest 10 days of the year for Cuban kids.

We had all written letters to the "Los Reyes Magos" (Three Wise Men).  Every kid has his favorite.  My dad picked up our letters and promised to mail them. My mom took us to the park to take a picture with the wise men and their plastic camels.

One merchant had real camels and they were huge.

On January 6th, we woke up early and ran to a small Christmas tree. It was full of gifts left by 'Los Reyes Magos."

We noticed that the camels had eaten the grass and the Wise Men had enjoyed their coffee.  We then would hear my grandmother talk about the wise men and how pleasant they were.

It was a wonderful memory. I have nothing against Santa Claus but memories of those "Reyes Magos" leaving us gifts are priceless.

I think about it every time that Christmas comes around.

FELIZ NAVIDAD!

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1923: President Coolidge lights first national Christmas tree

The National Tree tradition started on this day in 1923:


"On this day in 1923, President Calvin Coolidge touches a button and lights up the first national Christmas tree to grace the White House grounds.Not only was this the first White House "community" Christmas tree, but it was the first to be decorated with electric lights--a strand of 2,500 red, white and green bulbs. The balsam fir came from Coolidge's home state of Vermont and stood 48 feet tall. Several musical groups performed at the tree-lighting ceremony, including the Epiphany Church choir and the U.S. Marine Band. Later that evening, President Coolidge and first lady Grace were treated to carols sung by members of Washington D.C.'s First Congregational Church.According to the White House Historical Association, President Benjamin Harrison was the first president to set up an indoor Christmas tree for his family and visitors to enjoy in 1889. It was decorated with ornaments and candles. In 1929, first lady Lou Henry Hoover oversaw what would become an annual tradition of decorating the indoor White House tree. Since then, each first lady's duties have included the trimming of the official White House tree.Coolidge's "inauguration" of the first outdoor national Christmas tree initiated a tradition that has been repeated with every administration. In 1981, President Ronald Reaganbegan another custom by authorizing the first official White House ornament, copies of which were made available for purchase."

Great tradition!

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Monday, December 23, 2013

'Duck Dynasty' has a new fan

(My new American Thinker post)

A&E ran a bunch of "A Duck Dynasty" shows on Sunday.  I finally sat down and watched a couple of them.


First, it is hilarious. You got these "ZZ Top bearded guys" with beautiful wives, a successful business and a wonderful sense of humor. Uncle Si is the greatest "TV uncle" since Uncle Charlie in "My 3 sons"!  That fellow SI is a superstar!    

Second, Grandpa Phil, the man in the middle of the controversy, looks like the kind of guy that you want to go hunting with.   His wife, Miss Kay, is exactly the kind of woman you want cooking your next holiday meal.  She loves dogs and spoils her grandchildren.   

Third, the brothers, or the guys who run the business, are funny and treat their employees very well.   Wonder how many people watching this show wished that they had a boss like "brother CEO"? 

Fourth, I saw the Christmas play episode.  We enjoyed the family putting a Nativity play at church and treating their friends to food and gifts.  

There are a lot of people like the Robertsons in the south, probably everywhere else too.  They are good family people who contribute a lot to the nation, from creating jobs to keeping our traditions intact.   

Yes, Grandpa Phil could have expressed himself a bit different.  However, I can see why so many people love this show:  Can you believe that the show attracts 13 million viewers a week?  A&E viewership is up 10%!  Top 3 shows on TV!   

Suddenly, "clinging to your guns and religion" is a smash on TV!  Frankly, it's amazing that it took the TV networks so long to figure out that there is a huge audience out there for this kind of stuff.  

The left is not helping itself by mocking men and women like The Robertsons.  They connect with a lot of people!   

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The other Bay of Pigs story

(My new American Thinker post)

Mention "The Bay of Pigs" and most people will remember the failed invasion of Cuba and President Kennedy taking responsibility a few days later.

Most people do not know that most of the men of Brigade 2506 were captured and sentenced to prison in Cuba.

They were eventually released 50 years ago today:
"In the days before Christmas 50 years ago this weekend, 1,113 Bay of Pigs fighters captured by Fidel Castro's forces and imprisoned for 20 months were finally released to a heroes' welcome in Miami.   

The first planeload of POWs arrived at Homestead Air Force Base on Dec. 23, 1962. Gaunt and betrayed by the John F. Kennedy administration, members of the proud Brigade 2506 were bused to Miami's Dinner Key Auditorium, where waiting relatives engulfed them with hugs at a massive reunion that made front-page news. Five days later, JFK and his wife Jackie would be at the Orange Bowl to welcome them, too.  

On Saturday, the 50th anniversary of those pivotal days will be observed as surviving brigade members - now in their 70s and 80s - hold a and 11 a.m. Mass and reunion at the Bay of Pigs Museum in Little Havana."
A few years ago, I spoke with several of these men in Miami.  They are still confused about President Kennedy's decision to leave them stranded on the beach.  At the same time, most of them became great citizens in Miami and did not dwell on the events.

There is still another part of the story that many people don't know. 

Thousands of Cubans were incarcerated right after the invasion and there was a huge wave of repression on the island. 

A few months later, Castro declared that he was a Marxist Leninist.  The odd thing about this is that people were arrested in the early days for calling Castro a communist.  None of these people were released after Castro admitted that he was a communist.

The Bay of Pigs had a big impact on Cubans and President Kennedy, who had to spend much of 1961 fighting accusations of weakness and indecision. 


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