Friday, August 03, 2012

Dying For Afghanistan: A Memorial To A Brave Soldier


The war without purpose: Afghanistan.

The subject of the unnecessary and useless U.S. involvement in Afghanistan has been raised for several years in this blog.  We are sending our young, strong, smart sons and daughters to a land of corruption and antipathy toward our country and culture.  We have no plan for our involvement, no reason for staying there other than the fact we went there in the first place to kill a few terrorists who are often indistinguishable from those who are presently ruling and their minions.  Afghanistan soldiers seem to think it is a sport to kill their U.S. allies while our President and his commanders are more interested in public relations and making sure our soldiers are put in harms way without putting those they are fighting or the sympathizers of those they are fighting into harms way.  Soldiers die because of "rules of engagement."

Now this:

A 25-year-old Army soldier and 2005 Rochester High School graduate has been killed during combat operations in Afghanistan.
The Defense Department says today that Spc. Kyle McClain of Shelby Township died Aug. 1, in Salim Aka, Afghanistan.
His mother, Geraldine McClain said the combat engineer had been in Afghanistan for about six weeks after tours in Korea and Iraq. They were clearing roadways of IEDs when he was killed, she said.
“They had to get out of the vehicles and had to do foot search and that’s when he met the IED,” his mother said. “That’s the part of the story that’s hard to tell. But he is a hero to us.”
McClain was assigned to 1433rd Engineer Company, 507th Engineer Battalion, 177th Military Police Brigade in Kalamazoo.
Adopted from Korea, McClain spent his first year of service in the country.
“He was a gift to us; all through his 25 years has presented himself as a wonderful treasure,” his mother said, adding that the tour of Korea cemented his dedication to his home country. “He said he was so glad to be an American and there was no finer place to be than America.”
McClain attended Rochester Community Schools from Kindergarten, and he was part of the Falcon drum line in Rochester High Schools’ marching band. He and his wife, Lisa Morgan, who he met at Rochester High, were married in October 2010 and lived in Shelby Township.
After graduating from Rochester High, he attended two years of college, majoring in engineering at Ferris State University before joining the Army.
McClain enjoyed hunting and fishing with his father, Michael, and friends. He’s also survived by a sister, Kristyn, 33, his mother said. [source]
I knew this young man although not as well as some members of my family. His father helped me build our house. Kyle was always there to help his family and friends and was universally liked and respected. He was a model person and citizen. His death is another loss in the tragedy of this generation.

We have a niece who is about to go to that hellhole.  She is young, strong, and smart and we can only pray that she returns safely.



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There is always an easy solution to every human problem—neat, plausible, and wrong.
Henry Louis Mencken (1880–1956)
“The Divine Afflatus,” A Mencken Chrestomathy, chapter 25, p. 443 (1949)
... and one could add "not all human problems really are."
It was beautiful and simple, as truly great swindles are.
- O. Henry
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Tracking Interest Rates

Tracking Interest Rates


SEARCH BLOG: FEDERAL RESERVE for full versions... or use the Blog Archive pulldown menu.

February 3, 2006
Go back to 1999-2000 and see what the Fed did. They are following the same pattern for 2005-06. If it ain't broke, the Fed will fix it... and good!
August 29, 2006 The Federal Reserve always acts on old information... and is the only cause of U.S. recessions.
December 5, 2006 Last spring I wrote about what I saw to be a sharp downturn in the economy in the "rustbelt" states, particularly Michigan.
March 28, 2007
The Federal Reserve sees no need to cut interest rates in the light of adverse recent economic data, Ben Bernanke said on Wednesday.
The Fed chairman said ”to date, the incoming data have supported the view that the current stance of policy is likely to foster sustainable economic growth and a gradual ebbing in core inflation”.

July 21, 2007 My guess is that if there is an interest rate change, a cut is more likely than an increase. The key variables to be watching at this point are real estate prices and the inventory of unsold homes.
August 11, 2007 I suspect that within 6 months the Federal Reserve will be forced to lower interest rates before housing becomes a black hole.
September 11, 2007 It only means that the overall process has flaws guaranteeing it will be slow in responding to changes in the economy... and tend to over-react as a result.
September 18, 2007 I think a 4% rate is really what is needed to turn the economy back on the right course. The rate may not get there, but more cuts will be needed with employment rates down and foreclosure rates up.
October 25, 2007 How long will it be before I will be able to write: "The Federal Reserve lowered its lending rate to 4% in response to the collapse of the U.S. housing market and massive numbers of foreclosures that threaten the banking and mortgage sectors."
"Should the elevated turbulence persist, it would increase the possibility of further tightening in financial conditions for households and businesses," he said.

"Uncertainties about the economic outlook are unusually high right now," he said. "These uncertainties require flexible and pragmatic policymaking -- nimble is the adjective I used a few weeks ago."

December 11, 2007 Somehow the Fed misses the obvious.
[Image from:]
December 13, 2007 [from The Christian Science Monitor]
"The odds of a recession are now above 50 percent," says Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's "We are right on the edge of a recession in part because of the Fed's reluctance to reduce interest rates more aggressively." [see my comments of September 11]
January 7, 2008 The real problem now is that consumers can't rescue the economy and manufacturing, which is already weakening, will continue to weaken. We've gutted the forces that could avoid a downturn. The question is not whether there will be a recession, but can it be dampened sufficiently so that it is very short.
January 11, 2008 This is death by a thousand cuts.
January 13, 2008 [N.Y. Times]
“The question is not whether we will have a recession, but how deep and prolonged it will be,” said David Rosenberg, the chief North American economist at Merrill Lynch. “Even if the Fed’s moves are going to work, it will not show up until the later part of 2008 or 2009.
January 17, 2008 A few days ago, Anna Schwartz, nonagenarian economist, implicated the Federal Reserve as the cause of the present lending crisis [from the Telegraph - UK]:
The high priestess of US monetarism - a revered figure at the Fed - says the central bank is itself the chief cause of the credit bubble, and now seems stunned as the consequences of its own actions engulf the financial system. "The new group at the Fed is not equal to the problem that faces it," she says, daring to utter a thought that fellow critics mostly utter sotto voce.
January 22, 2008 The cut has become infected and a limb is in danger. Ben Bernanke is panicking and the Fed has its emergency triage team cutting rates... this time by 3/4%. ...

What should the Federal Reserve do now? Step back... and don't be so anxious to raise rates at the first sign of economic improvement.
Individuals and businesses need stability in their financial cost structures so that they can plan effectively and keep their ships afloat. Wildly fluctuating rates... regardless of what the absolute levels are... create problems. Either too much spending or too much fear. It's just not that difficult to comprehend. Why has it been so difficult for the Fed?

About Me

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Michigan, United States
Air Force (SAC) captain 1968-72. Retired after 35 years of business and logistical planning, including running a small business. Two sons with advanced degrees; one with a business and pre-law degree. Beautiful wife who has put up with me for 4 decades. Education: B.A. (Sociology major; minors in philosopy, English literature, and German) M.S. Operations Management (like a mixture of an MBA with logistical planning)