Tuesday’s Quick Hits

I just wanted you to know that somebody cares about you. Not me, but somebody does. – Unknown

Today’s quick hits deal with these important subjects:

  • Hanna’s Act
  • Wall Money
  • Michael Avenatti
  • The Meme of the Week

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Monday’s Political Odds & Ends

Welcome to February! Today in Iowa our country begins voting for President! Is this a great country or what?

Please take the polls at the end of this column about the Iowa caucus!

Today’s topics include:

  • 55 Montana Lawmakers
  • Clinton Emails
  • David Petraeus
  • Iowa Caucus

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MT Senate 2014: Department of Defense

Yesterday the Associated Press (AP) reported that the Department of Defense (DOD) would be “overseeing a plagiarism investigation being conducted by the U.S. Army War College against Sen. John Walsh because the Montana Democrat is a member of Congress.”

The AP said the move was “unusual” which means the conspiracy theory people will be out in force. Of course, the Walsh haters and Rep. Steve Daines’ (Walsh’s opponent) supporters were also out in force. It was pure silliness and good for a laugh or two.

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Pentagon Budget: Remain Calm

Don’t plan the parade because your military base or defense project wasn’t mentioned as something the Secretary of Defense planned to cut or curtail in his Fiscal Year 2015 Defense budget. On the other hand, don’t start drinking if your pet project or base or weapon system was mentioned by Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel during his press conference on Monday.

Most of it probably won’t happen – it was only a proposal:

pro·pos·al [pruh-poh-zuhl]
the act of offering or suggesting something for acceptance, adoption, or performance.
a plan or scheme proposed.

The proposal put forth has to be approved by Congress – you remember the 535 class presidents who have bases and contractors in their states and districts? Those folks will have a big say in what stays in the defense budget and what goes.

A lot of people are up in arms (pun intended) after Hagel announced his budget. Some folks were already reporting the nuclear triad would stay intact. Some groups sent press releases via e-mail saying retirees would have benefits reduced. A lot of words were written and a lot of time was spent yesterday on the DOD’s proposed budget.

Even current Rep. and U.S. Senate candidate Steve Daines (R-Mont.) sent a *statement to the Great Falls Tribune (I could not find it on-line) saying, “[H]e is strongly committed to ensuring that our military is fully equipped to protect our country…”

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Did You Hear the One About…

…the nuclear missile officers who “allegedly” cheated on their tests and achieved some of the lowest scores of the year?

Yes, that happened.

According to the Associated Press (AP):

Last summer, when dozens of nuclear missile officers allegedly cheated on exams, test scores were among the lowest of the year, according to Air Force records obtained by The Associated Press.

The number of nuclear missile officers who either “allegedly” cheated or failed to report the alleged cheating at Malmstrom AFB near Great Falls, Montana, is about 92.

Throw in a pickup truck and a dog and we’ll have all the ingredients for a great country song.

The AP had to ask the question, “Were they inept cheaters?”

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U.S. Military: Food Stamps

It’s a pretty sad state of affairs when our country with a military force that is second to none has members eligible for food stamps.

CNNMoney.com reported on Monday that food stamp redemption at military grocers hit almost $104 million in Fiscal Year (FY) 2013.

Back in FY 2008, $31 million was spent at military grocers through food stamps. The amount spent has increased every year since.

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Obama: One Tough Spring

Spring is in the air. It’s a time of renewal with new flowers sprouting from the ground, gardens being planted, and the aroma of fresh-cut grass encircling the neighborhood.

I doubt many in the Obama Administration have stopped to take in the sights and sounds of spring. To say the spring of 2013 (so far) has been tough on the Obama Administration would be an understatement – and summer is still over a month away. That means people will be paying attention for a while longer before school is out and they head off on vacations.

You can bet that some of these issues will stick around and have an effect on the 2014 mid-term elections and some will be the topics of the Presidential race of 2016. Here are the top five issues that the Obama Administration (as well as Democrats) now own and will have to defend for the next few years:

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DOD: 26,000 Sexual Assaults in 2012

As a former member of the United States Air Force, I was shocked to read that the head of the Air Force’s sexual assault prevention unit was arrested for sexual assault. It was also somewhat shocking (to me) that the head of the Air Force’s sexual assault prevention unit was only a Lt. Colonel (his name is Jeffrey Krusinski). It seems that the leadership of the Air Force did not believe sexual assault was an important enough issue to put someone in charge of it with at least a star or two (Brigadier or Major General) on his/her shoulder.

U.S. Representative Jackie Speier probably said it best (Pg. H2443) on the floor of the U.S. House yesterday when she asked (while standing next to a mug shot of Krusinski), “The best and the brightest the Air Force has to offer to run this office, and he’s a sexual predator?”

That’s just the tip of the iceberg. Continue reading