It’s a Will Rogers World

I may alienate some folks today, but I’ve kept silent for a long time. Our country, our culture, and most of the world, is afflicted with…pseudo-science. What is pseudo-science? It is a belief based on unproven or manufactured facts and studies that are presented as real science. We used to call such practitioners of pseudo-science as “snake-oil” salesmen.

We on the right laugh and point to Algore and his Holy Church of Global Warming. It is a prime example of pseudo-science. But many on the right, good conservatives all, have fallen for ideas based on pseudo-science, GMO crops and disease immunizations that cause autism, for example.

I’ll leave the GMO topic for another time, but the anti-immunization people are endangering millions and it is all based on pseudo-science. I wouldn’t have brought this subject up today if I hadn’t noticed an article in the Redstate website.

In 1998, the Lancet, a British Medical Journal, published an article that MMR (Mumps/Measles/Rubella) immunizations caused autism in children. The subject was extremely controversial and a large number of laboratories and agencies, among them the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention,[8] the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Institute of Medicine of the US National Academy of Sciences,[9] the UK National Health Service,[10],  reviewed the study and attempted to duplicate it. They all failed.

When the author, Andrew Wakefield, and his study was investigated, the research fell apart. It had been fabricated. Wakefield was denounced widely and publicly.

Investigations by Sunday Times journalist Brian Deer revealed that Wakefield had multiple undeclared conflicts of interest,[2][3] had manipulated evidence,[4] and had broken other ethical codes. The Lancet paper was partially retracted in 2004 and fully retracted in 2010, and Wakefield was found guilty by the General Medical Council of serious professional misconduct in May 2010 and was struck off the Medical Register, meaning he could no longer practice as a doctor.[5]Wiki.

But the damage had been done. Around the world, charlatans perpetuated the myth, many producing more studies that supported Wakefield and every one, in some form or another, cited Wakefield’s fraudulent study as proof of their contentions.

People believed these charlatans. Some because they were unaware of the original fraudulent study, others because the fraudulent study supported their own beliefs. Some because they wanted someone or something to blame for afflictions that developed in their children. Over the years, a cult following has developed in the belief that immunizations cause more harm than they help.

The anti-vaccine cult

Wow! What a weekend.

I had a real busy weekend. I had a real busy week. My shootin’ buddy and I spent Thursday at the range practicing for a pistol match coming up next month. Saturday night was a Friends of the NRA dinner and auction in H’ville. Then Sunday afternoon was the Western Missouri Shooters Alliance 25th Anniversary picnic.

I’m pretty much whooped.  Still…I’d do it again in a second.

***

The Kansas Senatorial race continues to be in the front of the news. I’ve had some friends ask me what the controversy is all about. It’s this, as briefly as I can explain.

There are (were) three candidates running for US Senator; Pat Roberts, the incumbent on the Republican Ticket, Chad Taylor on the democrat ticket, and Greg Orman, a democrat who the democrats wouldn’t let run against Taylor in the primary. Orman decided to run as an ‘independent.’ In reality, it’s two democrats running against one ‘Pub. Ordinarily, this would be a shoo-in for Roberts because Orman would split the democrat votes with Taylor.

Suddenly, the environment changed. Polls indicated that Orman was running better against Roberts than Taylor. To the democrats, this meant one of their candidates was a possible winner, especially since Roberts pissed off much of the grass-roots conservatives who had backed Milton Wolf. A significant percentage of those Wolf supporters declared they would either vote for Orman or stay home.

The democrats were now in a dilemma. Orman, a democrat in an independent’s costume, was ahead of Taylor. They decided to have Taylor quit. That would allow the democrats to vote for Orman instead of splitting their votes between the two democrat candidates.

The Kansas democrat leaders forced Chad Taylor to quit.

After a series of legal shenanigans, with the aid of their left-leaning KS Supreme Court, they got Taylor off the ticket. Bad news for Roberts. But Orman isn’t the clean-cut, scandal-free candidate the democrats and he projects. He is being sued for failure to pay royalties to another company for the use of their patented technology.

The establishment ‘Pubs are rallying around Roberts and Orman is facing more scrutiny from the national press. Surprise, surprise! Orman is keeping closed-mouth about what his political views?

Greg Orman, a political enigma, faces growing scrutiny in Kansas Senate race

September 28 at 8:53 PM

Greg Orman, the upstart Senate candidate threatening to unseat longtime Republican incumbent Pat Roberts in Kansas, says it’s liberating to run as an independent: “I can go to Washington as a problem solver, not a partisan.”

But not having a party also liberates Orman from taking positions — especially on controversial issues that might alienate partisans.

Greenlight the Keystone XL pipeline? Orman said he doesn’t have enough information to say yes or no.

What about gun control? He said gun restrictions should be “strengthened” but would not specify whether he backs an assault-weapons ban.

And on the biggest question of all — Would he caucus with Democrats or Republicans? — Orman insists he’s not sure.

“It’s not in the best interests for us to say that,” Orman said in an interview here last week.

Orman has said he would caucus with whichever party has the majority after November’s midterm elections. But what if the Senate is evenly divided and Orman’s decision swings the balance? He said that would be “a wonderful opportunity for Kansas.”

Orman’s rise has transformed deep-red Kansas into the year’s unlikeliest political battleground. Many voters say Roberts has lost touch with the state he’s represented in Congress since 1981.

Since Democratic nominee Chad Taylor withdrew his name from the ballot this month, Roberts has been in a two-man race with Orman, who has previous ties to the Democratic Party but preaches independence. Public polling has been unreliable, but both sides believe the race is very tight.

Orman, who entered the race in June, has surged on the strength of his pitch to fix a broken Washington without any allegiance to a political party. But now the enigma is under increasing pressure from voters to provide a clearer sense of his ideology and politics, while facing attacks from the Roberts camp over his business ties and Democratic past.

“I’ve been impressed with Greg so far, but we’re still in the ‘I’m an independent’ stage,” said Lynda Neff, 68, a retired teacher. “I’m ready to move past that and hear about some issues. . . . I will support him if he gives me a little more information.”

Perhaps the biggest test for Orman, a multi­millionaire investor who is partially funding his campaign, is surviving the intensifying public scrutiny of his business and personal relationships with Rajat Gupta, the former Goldman Sachs board member who was convicted in 2012 of insider trading and is serving a federal prison sentence.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dre/politics/election-lab-2014

Election Lab: See our current forecast for every congressional race in 2014.

View Graphic

Roberts and his Republican allies have launched a barrage of attacks designed to make Orman appear untrustworthy. On the campaign trail in Kansas last week, a parade of top Republicans alleged that Orman is a liberal Democrat in disguise.

“Anybody with a liberal record like Greg’s . . . that’s not independence. That’s someone who’s trying to snooker you, Kansas,” Sarah Palin, the former Alaska governor and vice-presidential nominee, said Thursday in Independence.

Palin’s 2008 running mate, Sen. John McCain (Ariz.), told voters a day earlier in suburban Overland Park: “Let’s be honest — he’s a Democrat. He walks like a duck and he quacks like a duck and he is a duck.”

Robert J. Dole, a former Senate Republican leader and 91-year-old Kansas legend, said Monday night in Dodge City, “There’s a multimillionaire who claims he’s an independent, but really [he’s] in the other party.”

In Kinsley on Tuesday, after reporters asked whether he trusted Orman to govern as an independent, Roberts said, “All of a sudden, if there’s a metamorphosis and the caterpillar changed — why, I just don’t think that’s in the cards.”

Orman argues that the Republicans are reading him wrong. He said he voted for Obama in 2008, and public records show that in the middle of that decade he made donations mostly to Democrats, including Obama and Sen. Al ­Franken (Minn.). In 2008, he briefly ran for Senate against Roberts as a Democrat before dropping out.

The column by the Washington Post is long. You can read it completely on their website.

I was surprised that the Washington Post says the new Senate will be ‘Pub controlled, 62 to 48 given their history of biased reporting. Joni Ernst now leads Braley, 44 percent to 38 percent. Most of the polling over the last month or more has Ernst in the lead but the MSM claimed otherwise and called Iowa a ‘leaning blue’ state.

Des Moines Register: “The ground under Bruce Braley has shifted. The Democratic U.S. Senate candidate is 6 points behind his GOP rival, Joni Ernst, according to The Des Moines Register’s new Iowa Poll of likely voters. Ernst leads 44 percent to 38 percent in a race that has for months been considered deadlocked…. One potential reason: Two-thirds of likely voters who live in the country are bothered by a remark he made about Republican U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley that’s been perceived as besmirching farmers.”

Braley should have known that dissing farmers in Iowa is not a career-enhancing tactic.

Evolution

When I retired from Sprint—kicked out the door that is, one of the ‘retirement’ bennies was keeping our cell phones, for Mrs. Crucis and myself, on the employee phone plan. I used my employee discount to upgrade our cell phones to the latest one available at the time, an android smartphone. It was the best available when I retired.

That was over three years ago, almost four. Times have changed. Our original smartphones only had 512mb internal memory. The ‘external’ memory card was for data storage. That amount of memory worked well for almost four years.

The problem that eventually arose is that apps run in internal memory. Many—most, are loaded at startup and every one wants its piece of that internal memory. Over the years, after app update after update, those apps grew, demanding more and more memory…and that…is where the problem arose.

When some of the core apps need memory, they seize it from the free, available internal memory. When there isn’t enough memory, bad things happen. Apps stop, the phone locks up, or, those apps that allow swapping internal memory with storage, grow slooow.

Our new phones arrive this week. They have over 4gb internal memory and up to 64gb external storage. I hope they last another three-four years.

***

I’ve been waiting to see this item announced by the MSM. So far this morning, nothing has been said. (So far, only the Washington Free Beacon and FOX News are reporting on this issue.)

Putin is rattling his cold-war saber. Long range Russian bombers have bee flying along the coasts of the US and now they are practicing launching long-range cruise missiles from outside the northern Canadian border. The real issue is that NORAD, the old North American Air Defense command is a shadow of its former self.

In the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s, we had the DEW line (Distant Early Warning) across Alaska, Canada and Greenland. Later, we also had BMEWS (Ballistic Missile Early Warning System) that reached from Alaska to the UK. The easternmost leg of that system was in northern Scotland, the western leg ended in the Aleutian Islands. In addition to these two systems, we also had a line of over-the-horizon radar and radio intercept sites all along our northern and European borders with the old USSR.

We still have capability to detect Russian incursions into our territory and to monitor them off our coasts. The real problem is that we don’t have the capability, in aircraft and bases, to defend ourselves if Putin’s practice launches, and wargames, become real.

With all this in mind, What have you heard from the MSM? Russian bombers have been stalking us for some time and, whether we acknowledge it or not, Cold War II is in full force.

Russian Strategic Bombers Near Canada Practice Cruise Missile Strikes on US

Nuclear launch rehearsal conducted in North Atlantic

BY: , September 8, 2014 5:00

Hard Times

Turncoats are having a tough time. Charlie Crist was a ‘Pub once, being elected as Florida’s Governor and Attorney General. He was unsuccessful in his run for the US Senate, being beaten in the primary by the Tea Party candidate, Marco Rubio. After his senate loss, Crist switched parties, first to be independent and finally to the democrats.

He lost again as a democrat. Now, he’s attempting to regain the Governor’s seat, a position he held in past years as a ‘Pub. But his past party shuffling has become an anchor chained to his leg.

CRIST’S CONVERSION COMES BACK TO HAUNT HIM
Charlie Crist
’s own words on political bona fides are getting a going-over in the Republican-turned-independent-turned-Democrat’s bid for Florida’s governor’s mansion. AP: “It sounds like something Republican Gov. Rick Scott would ask of…Crist: ‘How can the people of Florida trust your recent conversion?’ But the words were Crist’s, and the question was asked to Tom Gallagher during the 2006 Republican primary for governor. [Then-Republican] Crist easily won that race in large part because he accused Gallagher of shifting his politics to win the election. ‘Talking about being a conservative after a political lifetime of liberalism just isn’t believable,’ Crist said of Gallagher. [Now] Crist is the leading Democratic candidate for governor and is fielding the same accusations — in reverse — from Florida Republicans and his Democratic primary opponent, Nan Rich. They say Crist can’t be trusted because of his political conversion from Republican to independent to Democrat.” — FOXNewsletter, August 11, 2014, Trib Total Media.

Voters have memories and those same voters will remember the turncoat who betrayed them. That situation applies to another turncoat, Missouri’s Attorney General Chris Koster, who started politics as a conservative republican. Koster won election as Cass County’s Prosecutor in 1994. After ten years as Cass County’s Prosecutor, he ran successfully for state senator in 2004 as a ‘Pub and voted conservatively during his only term.

But the state senate was just a stepping stone. Koster wanted to be Governor. Unfortunately, the ‘Pubs already had a candidate and Koster hadn’t yet paid his dues for the next rung up the political ladder.

Koster found he couldn’t buck the GOP state organization. Instead of building a base and serving another term in the senate, he switched parties and was successful winning election for Attorney General as a democrat. In that conversion, Koster discarded his conservative stance and adopted all of the democrat’s radical politics. In politics, that is known as burning your bridges…sometimes, as Charlie Crist has found, in front of you.

Once again, Koster is aiming for Governor vice current Governor Jay Nixon. But he has hit a stumbling block. No one really trusts a turncoat and democrats fear Koster could betray them like he betrayed the ‘Pubs in 2007.

Steve Kraske: Chris Koster hits his first speed bump on the road to Missouri governor

Read more here: http://www.kansascity.com/news/local/news-columns-blogs/local-columnists/article1179151.html#storylink=cpy

The Tea Party’s not Dead!

The GOP establishment took a Gibbs-style slap upside the head after yesterday’s primaries. The Tea Party still has power.

In Iowa, Joni Ernst, a state Senator…

…handily won the [Republican] nomination, receiving enough votes to avoid a nominating convention in the five-way race. She’ll face Democratic Rep. Bruce Braley in the November general election to replace retiring Democrat Tom Harkin, who held the seat for 30 years. Ernst attracted national attention after she released an ad in March playfully suggesting her experience on her family’s farm castrating pigs will translate to her cutting ‘pork’ in Congress, pledging to ‘make ‘em squeal’… Ernst told a crowd of cheering supporters after being declared the winner that she is running to represent ‘Iowa values’ in Washington. ‘I’m running for Senate because Iowa means everything to me,’ she said.” — FOX News.

Ernst received support from the Tea Party, Sarah Palin, Marco Rubio, plus other grassroots organizations.

Another ‘major’ race yesterday was the primary election for the Mississippi Senate seat. At this time, it appears the GOP primary will head towards a run-off, none of the three candidates received over 50% of the votes. With 98% of the votes counted, the two leading candidates, challenger Chris McDaniel and incumbent Thad Cochran, acquired 49.6% and 48.8% of the votes respectively. The third candidate, Thomas Carey, “…finished with 1.6 percent of the vote and conceded the race late Tuesday night. (Daily Caller.)

FOX News commented…

It looks all but certain that Mississippi’s vicious Republican primary will continue for another three weeks. With just a few precincts uncounted, Tea Party-backed state Sen. Chris McDaniel was leading but still below the 50 percent threshold needed to avoid a June 24 runoff with the incumbent, six-term Mississippi GOP Sen. Thad Cochran. Barring a huge trove of McDaniel votes from unlikely precincts, the race will go on. That’s not good news for Cochran who, as Molly Ball reported, has not exactly been burning up the campaign trail. Cochran’s best chance to win was with the unusually large turnout on Tuesday, including some number of crossover Democrats supporting the moderate Republican. A runoff will distill the electorate to its concentrated conservative elements, and McDaniel’s supporters will be out in force. — The Atlantic.

Those, like Karl Rove and Mitch McConnell, who think they’ve beaten the Tea Party, are mistaken.

In other primaries around the country, former GOP South Dakota Governor. Mike Rounds, “took 55 percent of the vote in the state’s GOP Senate primary, far surpassing the 35 percent threshold to avoid a runoff. Republicans view the South Dakota race as one of their strongest chances to pick up a Democratic seat in 2014 with Sen. Tim Johnson, D-S.D., retiring.” — FOX News.

In Montana, Republican Rep. Steve Daines was selected as the party nominee for the U.S. Senate against democrat Sen. John Walsh. According to the AP, both candidates have been campaigning against one another as if it was the General election instead of the Primary.

The campaign season is in full swing.

Followup

It didn’t take long for Missouri Democrats to take retribution against Representative Keith English (D-Florissant.) English was the sole democrat vote needed to override Democrat Governor Jay Nixon’s veto of the Tax Cut Bill (SB509.)

Yesterday, the day following English’s veto-busting vote, he received a letter from House Democratic Leader Jake Hummel removing him from his committee assignments. Some insiders claim it was a symbolic gesture because none of English’s committees will be meeting for the remainder of this legislative term.

It is remarkable to observe the differences between democrats and the ‘pubs. English was disciplined by being removed from his committee assignments for a critical vote against the demands of his party. Last September, Senators Dempsey and Richard, reversed their votes on similar bills during the veto session, voting to uphold Nixon’s vetos. Their change of votes, from for-the-bill to against-the-bill, occurred after they accompanied Nixon on a taxpayer-paid junket to Europe. Nothing happened to those two. English, however, lost his committee assignment.

English’s decision to vote for the tax cuts, some $620 million when the cuts are activated, was not a recent occurrence.

English was a special guest at a private reception for Republican lawmakers on Tuesday night. He told members that he wanted to vote in favor of the bill when it was first brought up in the House, but that he was urged by Republican leadership to hold off until the override vote in an attempt to avoid pressure from Democrats, including the governor.” — PoliticMO Newsletter, May 8, 2014

I haven’t examined English’s voting record. I would not be surprised that he has sided with the ‘Pubs in the past.

***

HB 1439, the Second Amendment Preservation Act, is hung up in committee in the House. It had passed in the House on April 12th on a vote of 114 to 41. It went to the Senate and passed there on a vote of 23 to 8. However, (isn’t there always a ‘however?) the Senate made some changes to the bill. Those changes required a confirming vote in the House. That vote has not yet happened.

Why?

There was a provision in the House version that was changed in the Senate; a change some House members demand be reinstated. If the House changes the Senate version, we are in another series of ping-pong from House to Senate and time is running out.

I’m coming to believe we will not pass HB1439. Some insiders who have watched this bill closely from the beginning believe it was designed to fail, that it contained a poison-pill or two.

It is not a good bill. It is a hodge-podge of components that should rightly have been proposed and voted upon individually instead of being collected into a monstrous Congress-style conglomeration of components. One reason why this bill is bad is that if it is passed and is enacted, we, the CCW holders in the state, would lose reciprocity with a number of states…maybe half of those states who currently recognize our permits.

HB1439 lowers the age for a CCW permit from 21 to 19. That would make our CCW permits incompatible with those states whose lowest age is 21 for a CCW holder.

Our neighbor, Kansas, is one whose minimum age for a CCW permit is 21. Think for a moment of the consequences if we lost reciprocity with Kansas! I live within ten miles of the Kansas/Missouri border. I travel to Kansas several times a week. I used to work in Kansas. Imagine not being able to legally carry in Kansas and all the burdens that would ensue!

There are other issues in HB1439 that can cause issues, too. For me, I won’t cry if it fails to pass. Yes, there are provisions in it I would dearly love to see enacted—open carry for one (although I would probably not carry openly myself. I do believe, however, that we should have the option. Kansas will have Open Carry in a few months.)

If HB1439 fails this year, we must learn from our mistakes. I believe it is a strategic mistake to roll all the firearm/CCW/2nd Amendment items into one bill. Yes, it may be a convenience for those sitting in Jeff City, but it has great dangers as we are seeing now with HB1439.

Personally, I’m going to meet with my Senator and Representative and urge them to fight to change how we organize any future bills for firearm and 2nd Amendment rights. One bill for each item. If an issue cannot stand alone on its own virtue, perhaps it shouldn’t be passed? When we have an omnibus-style bill, like we’ve attempted to pass in the last two years and have failed, there will always be one issue or another that will/could stop its passage. Let’s chalk this idea of attempting to pass a large complex bill under the “Lessons Learned” column and vow not to repeat it.

 

War Warnings

The United States was involved in two major, world-spanning, wars in the 20th Century. We had warnings before the start of each war…and, for the most part, ignored them.

Newt Gingrich, in a CNN column, writes about the parallels between our current foreign situation and that prior to World War One. Gingrich, in addition to his political experience, is also a Historian. He is seeing the same parallels that I’ve written about in past posts.

The twin dangers of the Ukraine crisis

By Newt Gingrich, April 23, 2014 — Updated 2221 GMT (0621 HKT)

Ukrainian troops take position near burning tires at a pro-Russian checkpoint in Slaviansk following an attack by Ukrainian soldiers on Thursday, April 24. Ukraine has seen a sharp rise in tensions since a new pro-European government took charge of the country in February.

 

(CNN) — This year is the centennial of the First World War. One-hundred years ago this month, in April 1914, no one thought there would be a war. But war began, triggered by events in Eastern Europe, by the end of July. It came as an enormous shock, in retrospect almost like the Titanic hitting an iceberg.

In the end, it shattered Europe, cost tens of millions of lives, bankrupted countries and changed forever those who survived the horrors.

A century later, our focus is again on Eastern Europe, the site of a regional conflict that threatens to entangle the world’s leading powers.

The situation in Ukraine is a perilous one, much more so than our current debate acknowledges.

In Russia, we are dealing with the largest country in the world geographically, a country that possesses thousands of nuclear weapons, plenty of ballistic missiles and a ruthlessly determined leader motivated by nationalism and an imperial drive: a leader who also has an entrenched machine capable of keeping him in power for a long time.

In Ukraine, we are dealing with an ally that fought alongside us in Iraq and Afghanistan, and a nation now threatened with conquest by a much stronger neighbor against which it cannot defend itself.

In Europe, we are dealing with a continent that for more than half a century has relied on the United States to guarantee peace, security and freedom. We have kept that promise through NATO, the alliance that war in Eastern Europe threatens seriously to undermine.

And in the United States, we are dealing with a nation weary of war after more than a decade spent in Iraq and Afghanistan, and a public wary of more armed intervention abroad.

We need a national debate on what our policy is going to be. And then we need to engage our friends in Europe on what our policy is going to be.

As retired former NATO Commander Gen. Wesley Clark and his colleague Dr. Phillip Karber, a former Defense Department official, detail in their recent report from Ukraine, the Obama Pentagon has adopted a position of not helping that country with any offensive weapons. Offensive weapons including, for example, Kevlar vests, night vision equipment and aviation fuel.

So while the United States has sent thousands of meals ready to eat (Army rations) to a country that is an agricultural exporter, the administration has refused to send even nonlethal equipment that would help Ukraine defend itself and possibly avert war.

Instead of sending military supplies to Ukraine, we hear talk of more sanctions. And yet, as I discuss in my podcast this week, I suspect it will be apparent very quickly that sanctions against Russian President Vladimir Putin are going to be irrelevant. He is a very tough man. He heads a very big country with immense natural resources. He can cause pain fully as much as his neighbors can cause him pain. He can block American shipments to Afghanistan from coming through Russia by the northern route. He can cut off natural gas flow to Western Europe. He has a veto at the U.N. Security Council, and can obstruct further sanctions against Iran.

This is a very difficult situation, and we are now in two enormous dangers. First, of the Obama administration doing too little, in which case the world will become less safe as we show weakness to our allies and the Russians seek to reconstitute the Soviet empire. And second, of doing things too clumsily, in which case, as one-hundred years ago, a bad combination of miscalculations, delusions, laws and alliances could land us in a war no one intends.

If you read popular history, you would believe that the US entered World War One because of the sinking of the RMS Lusitania. What you may not remember is that the Lusitania was sunk on May 7, 1915. The US did not enter the war until April 6, 1917—nearly two years later.

The reasons for the delay were many—mostly due to the incompetence of Woodrow Wilson and his alliance with various ‘Peace’ groups. Wilson was finally convinced to sign the declaration of war after a number of events, such as the resumption of unrestricted submarine warfare, the Zimmerman letters that indicated the Axis powers were attempting an alliance with Mexico (an aftermath of Pershing’s pursuit of Pancho Villa) and other indications that the Axis powers would soon ignore the neutrality of the US and attack US assets and installations at home and abroad.

American Entry into World War I, 1917

On April 2, 1917, President Woodrow Wilson went before a joint session of Congress to request a declaration of war against Germany. Wilson cited Germany’s violation of its pledge to suspend unrestricted submarine warfare in the North Atlantic and the Mediterranean, and its attempts to entice Mexico into an alliance against the United States, as his reasons for declaring war. On April 4, 1917, the U.S. Senate voted in support of the measure to declare war on Germany. The House concurred two days later. The United States later declared war on Austria-Hungary on December 7, 1917. — Office of the Historian, US State Department.

The paragraph above is the official summary of our entry into WW1. There is a more extensive, and controversial, discussion on Wiki (accused of anti-German bias.)

What Gingrich’s article does is to compare parallels then and today. Is the Russian invasion of the Crimea similar to that of Austia-Hungary’s invasion of Serbia? Is the overthrow of Ukrainian President of Ukraine, Viktor Yanukovych, the parallel of the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand?

Obama, in response to Putin’s actions in the Ukraine, is sending a few troops to Poland, a US and NATO ally. True, it’s only 600 Paratroops to participate in a joint exercise. Other Army companies will head to Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.

Obama and others in the White House and in the Administration think these pittance of troops will block further aggression by Putin. Unfortunately, like those events leading to World War 1, those few troops could be a tripwire leading us into another war. And, like we were prior to those two world wars in the last century, we are, again, ill prepared to respond.