Why Does “American Sniper” Divide Us Into “Left” And “Right”?


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Hat/Tip to Wordsmith at Flopping Aces.

One of Flopping Aces’ best, Wordsmith delves into the phenomenon that is American Sniper.

Here is his Op-Ed in its entirety:

Whatever the truth about Chris Kyle (and I suspect, like most, the real Chris Kyle was a complex person; and lived tall tales while fabricating others), he is an American hero.

My understanding of the film is that it’s not meant to make a political statement. But I suppose everything under the sun is political when you bring your politics with you in going to see movies.

I’ve not seen the film yet, so can’t comment on it; but I have been reading some of the reactions– and some of them are rather curious:

One of the first celebrities to show their support for the film was the uber-liberal Jane Fonda, who tweeted the following:


Just saw “American Sniper” Powerful. Another view of “Coming Home.” Bradley Cooper sensational. Bravo Clint Eastwood. http://t.co/l94zY5Gh8Q

— Jane Seymour Fonda (@Janefonda) December 21, 2014

Fonda, of course, attracted the ire of many Americans when she took a trip to North Vietnam in 1972 and posed for several photos with NVA troops, earning her the nickname “Hanoi Jane.” She later starred in the Oscar-winning Vietnam War drama Coming Home, about a ménage-a-trois involving Vietnam War veterans suffering from PTSD. This past weekend, she apologized for her “Hanoi Jane” days, calling her trip a “huge mistake.”

Is Fonda being sincere? Or is she trying to heal her image?

While Fonda supported the film and its sympathy for PTSD-suffering military vets, other celebrities homed in on the film’s perceived jingoistic, pro-war message. Seth Rogen, whose recent film The Interview attracted the ire of North Korean despot Kim Jong Un, tweeted:

Even if this were true, and Eastwood attempted to lace a Rah-rah GO USA! message into the film, what is so wrong with being pro-American? 


Documentary filmmaker Michael Moore took Rogen’s criticisms one step further. The director, who was famously booed when he denounced the Iraq War and then-President George W. Bush in his 2003 Oscar acceptance speech, claimed that snipers like Kyle were “cowards” and “aren’t heroes”:

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Are snipers cowards?

I think those who think so are the ones who have the line of reasoning that police are cowards and bullies because they swarm to take down a suspect in numbers rather than confront one-on-one; or that the U.S. is a bully because it will invade a weaker country suspected of having wmd but won’t attack a country known to have wmd. As if any sane military would ever seek a “fair” fight and not suppress the enemy with superior and sustained, overwhelming firepower that minimizes risk and harm to our own people.

Here are some other comments by the nasties on the left who have a distorted, world-view:

Chris Smith: I agree with Seth Rogan and Michael Moore on both facts. Murdering for corporate greed isn’t fighting for freedom, it murdering for corporate greed! Trying to promote and celebrate the murders as heroic is propaganda! Chris Kyle is a terrorist and nothing else!

Bram Heath: I saw the movie yesterday and was thinking the same thing Seth thought. When people started clapping I knew that was the 23% that watch Fox News. Felt like I was watching a Joseph goebbles film from 1942.

Steven M Schwartz: You can no longer be critical of the military and those who serve. Thanks to almost a decade and a half of the blindly patriotic bull shit the right and the government has shoved or attempted to shove down our throats. From the pro war NFL pregame flyovers to the plastering of American flags and yellow ribbons. Fox news and the right have co-oped the word patriot and American, and now the word “American” means war loving Christian white America. If you do not kowtow to their agenda then you are the enemy. This movie is nothing more than propaganda revisionist history about a self admitted racist who chose to kill people over being with his family.

Thomas Petsa: nothing heroic about a sniper….hiding behind a bush miles away shooting someone in the head aint heroic….a bloke charging towards an enemy under fire now that’s heroic..blokes landing in dunkirk seeing their mates getting gunned down knowing they might be next..that’s either heroic or dumb..snipers have got it cushy in comparison..

Chris Smith: Chris Kyle was a terrorist pawn for a corporate military. I spit on his service!

Chris Owens: From what I’ve read, it sounds like he was a serial killer moreso than a hero.

Shannon Love: Real ‘American Sniper’ was a hate-filled killer — why are simplistic patriots treating him as a hero?

Read the full story here.





Taking America Back One Bit At A Time Part 6: The Process of Taking America Back


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Earlier posts in this series can be found here: Part 1, Introduction, Part 2, The Founding, Part 3, The Taking, Part 4, The Taking continued, and Part 5, Looking Beyond December 2012.

{NOTE: This is the last post in this series and it is long.}

The Process of Taking America Back

In Part 5, we speculated about the future. We divided the future into three parts: 1.) from December 2012 until the debt time bomb goes off, 2.) the period of chaos after the debt bomb goes off, and 3.) after the chaos. We will want to keep those three parts of the future in mind as we talk about how can work at taking America back, not in  our time but in some future time. For me, I think about my great-grandchildren and those that will follow.

In thinking about the future in the three time frames listed above, we have no way of know how long those time periods will be. But, for the purposes of this discussion let’s make some assumptions. Let’s assume that the debt bomb will go off in fifteen years. Let’s further assume that the period of chaos will last ten to fifteen years and after that order will begin to take place; whether naturally or imposed by The Powers That Be. With that time frame in mind, we then can set our goal of taking America back at two or more generations; 50 to 60 years from now. We can’t let the length of time break our spirit. Reality is a tough master. The chances of taking America back may be remote, but remote is good enough for me.

I am going to propose as a starting point for discussion five main pillars of focus for Taking America Back One Bit At A Time. Some these came to me from an article by Andrew Klavan. The others came to me from where I do not know for sure. Please understand that I am not claiming to have all the answers. I don’t. I am just throwing out some ideas here.

  • Making Red States Redder
  • Taking Back Our Children’s Education
  • Putting Conservatism Back In Mainstream Media
  • Putting Conservatism Back In The Entertainment Industry
  • Putting God and Christianity Back In America’s Culture

I will talk about each of these bullet points and I will make reference to the Klavan article. To  start with, the tag line of the Klavan article is: Three areas the Right should address, financially and intellectually. In a Bill Whittle video thrown together within hours of knowing that Obama had won a second term, he makes a similar point. The point is if we patriots are serious about wanting to take America back, we are going to have to put our money where are mouths are. From those of us who can only give the least to the Koch brothers who can give the most, When organizations come to life that are trying to move forward on issues we believe in, we must be ready to give what we can.

Making The Red States Redder

When I first proposed that conservatives start thinking long-term, I didn’t get a lot of support. A few commenters said we need to focus on the local and state level as the way to begin taking our country back. If these commenters thought they were disagreeing with me, they were not. Taking our states back has to be an important pillar in taking our country back. Where better to start than in the states that have a majority of conservative voters, the Red States?

We patriotic conservatives to get involved in the Party structure in their cities and counties. That will give them a voice in choosing local and state candidates. Even in Red States we need to be sure we are electing true conservatives. Then maybe they can get control on these unelected planning commissions that can’t help themselves from accepting state and federal grants in exchange for implementing Smart Growth and Sustainable Living projects which are part of the UN’s Agenda 21 program to get everybody to  lower their standard of living and to take land out of private hands and put it into limited use categories. If Red States can get enough true conservatives in their state houses maybe they could stop participating in optional federal programs. Doing so means giving up federal funds but that is what is needed so that states are not being told what to do by the federal government. And, of course, we need to elect true conservatives to the House and Senate.

What about those that live in Blue States? They can focus on the counties and districts that are not blue. And if you live in a blue county, contribute to candidates in red counties.

Taking Back Our Children’s Education

When it comes to our children’s education, we need to be thinking on a two-pronged attack. K-12 is one and universities is another. And, in my opinion, for the first many years we should be concentrating on only the education of the children of conservatives. When we know we have them taken care of, then we can expand to take in all children.

  • K-12 _  Bill Whittle in the video linked above talked about himself possibly setting up some private for profit companies to provide services that conservatives want.  His idea was that if 10 million conservatives contributed $10 per month to this company, that would be $1.2 billion per year and you can do a lot of good with that kind of money. Further more, because it is a for profit company, if the service or product isn’t deemed worth the price, the company will soon be out of business. So, he has some ideas on how to provide a good alternative to public schools. For many people home schooling is an alternative but for many more it is not. So,, maybe we need a network of home schoolers who are willing to take on a few more students. Depending on the community and the types of businesses in the area there is the option of groups of concerned parents banning together and renting some space and then look for retired people who would love to teach, at least part-time.  And, businesses are often willing to let some of their qualified  staff to teach a course or, at least some lengthy seminars. The point is that conservatives need to get their children and grandchildren out of public schools now! There are alternatives. We just need to put our collective heads together to find ones that will work.
  • Universities _ Universities were once places where ideas were freely debated. Not any more. Free speech is only for those that practice political correctness and multiculturalism and progressivism. Taking back our universities is a longer term proposition. Remember that I am just throwing out ideas here. If Whittle’s idea could work for a for-profit company, why couldn’t it work for a non-profit company; say a foundation. With $1.2 billion per year, a lot of good could be done. Couldn’t such a foundation work to promote a conservative student organizations on campuses? Couldn’t such a foundation provide scholarships to conservative students who would like to be teachers or professors or to study journalism or dramatic arts? Couldn’t such a foundation bring free speech law suits when students receive failing grades because they chose a conservative answer on a paper? The bottom line is that we have to take our universities back little by little.

Putting Conservatism Back In Main Stream Media

In Taking The Long View, Andrew Klavan said:

To win that game, to create an electorate more deeply committed to true liberty and resistant to the sort of cultural scare tactics the president’s campaign team used so effectively, there are three areas to which conservatives need to commit intellectual and financial resources—three areas that our intelligentsia and funders, in their impractical practicality, too often ignore.

I am neither part of the intelligentsia or one of the funders. Those folks will do whatever it is they do. But, I do think we common folk can play a role as well. Klavan notes that Breitbart dedicated his life to fighting the left controlled media and the fight must continue. But, Klavan asked a good question

How is it possible that the mind-boggling success of Fox News has failed to spawn half a dozen imitators …

Besides Rupert Murdoch, where are our rich conservatives? Are the Koch brothers really conservatives? We could use their help, to be sure. But, using the Whittle model again, why couldn’t we support a conservative investment club to the tune of $1.2 billion per year to either help fund the starting of a Fox News style channel or to buy shares in an existing left stream media channel company until we had enough seats on the board to change their editorial style? Then they could hire the journalism students we are helping.

Putting Conservatism Back In The Entertainment Industry

Klavan said we have plenty of conservatives in Hollywood, but what is needed is

We need an infrastructure to support them: more funding, more distribution, sympathetic review venues, grants and awards for arts that speak the truth out loud.

Okay, why can’t we set up another Bill Whittle style company to do that? I now have our ten million patriotic conservatives donating ten dollars a month each to three causes. Is that too much to ask of people who really want their country back some day?

Putting God and Christianity Back In America’s Culture

Klavan talks in his article about religion for intellectuals. He has this to say:

The triumph of science, the comfort of Western life, and a sophisticated elite virulently hostile to religion have all contributed to an intellectual atmosphere of unbelief—a sense that atheism should be the default mode of reasonable, thinking people. That is a mere prejudice and needs to be answered in the culture, not with Bible-thumping literalism and small-minded judgmentalism—nor with banal happy-talk optimism—but by sound argument made publicly, unabashedly, and without fear.

Sounds good to me. I’ll let you decide what he means. An intellectual I am not. I am just a simple guy. What I know is that this country was founded, for better or worse, by a bunch of White Anglo-Saxon Protestants (WASPs). In other words, it was founded by Christians. Although this country grew by immigrants from all over the world, the vast majority of them were also Christians. Christianity has always been an integral part of American culture. Christian morals and mores have been the glue that has held our culture together since its founding. The Progressive-Socialist-Communist have used a variety of tactics over decades to break the hold of Christianity on our culture. They have had an alarming success, haven’t they? I don’t have any great ideas on how to put God and Christianity back into our culture. Maybe Klavan’s intellectuals will come up with a grand plan. But, it does seem to me that it is time that Christians took a more aggressive stance on their values and beliefs. There are some small and not so small things Christians can do. Several blogs have recently posted videos of flash mobs breaking out singing Christmas Carols in malls crowded with people Christmas shopping. It is nice!  I know it is just Christmas Carols. But, as the camera pans  the faces in the crowds you see people listening intently and then a smile appears on their face and there is a slight nod of the head as they remember what Christmas is really celebrating. I wish there were  flash mobs in every mall every day all across the country until Christmas day. How many Christians say to people they do not know “Happy Holiday” instead of Merry Christmas because they are afraid they might offend someone if they are not Christian? That’s nonsense. “Merry Christmas” is asking someone to enjoy or be happy during the Christian celebration. There is no reason for anyone to be offended and if they are it is their problem. When someone wishes me a Happy Hanukkah, I say thank you and wish them a Happy Hanukkah back. What’s the problem? Okay, those are little things. Let;s move on to something bigger. Isn’t it time that Christians started standing up to the atheist who sue to remove an iron cross put up on a hill as a memorial to some fallen Marines, because the hill is government property. Or when the atheist sue to remove Christian images from buildings owned by government. This is nonsense! Our constitution says the government will not establish a religion. We have in our country freedom of religion; not freedom from religion. Christians need to counter sue. It doesn’t have to cost much money; only time. I’d bet there are templates on the internet on how to file a civil suit or counter suit. The Christians don’t need a lawyer.  They can make their own arguments. They need only tell the judge that Christian images or symbols on government property is not the same as establishing a religion. Christian images or symbols in government buildings are nothing more than a reflection of America’s history and culture. Will they win” Probably not, but they might get some good publicity in the local papers and who knows, they just might find an honest judge once in a while.

How would Taking America Back One Bit At A Time work during the period of chaos after the debt bomb goes off?

It’s possible that our efforts would have to go on hold during the chaos. Surviving may be the only thing that people can do. But, it may depend on what the chaos is like. If the federal government can continue to function is something we do not know.  What if the federal government becomes so weak that it can barely function.? What if the safety nets can’t be maintained. How will the central government pay for all of the bureaucracy? If I am still around to see the chaos, I will not be surprised if some states secede and form small confederations. This, of course, is not what we want for our country, but it is within the realm of possibilities. If that should happen, the states mostly like to secede would be the Red States. As horrible as that sounds, would that not be an opportunity for an American Renaissance to take place? Short of something like that happening, our struggle will have to wait for order to be restored. What ever that order is, conservatives will probably not like it; but it will likely be much better than the chaos.


For those who have managed to stay with me trough all six parts of this series on Taking America Back One Bit At A Time, I salute you. I know it could not have been easy for you. Whether it showed in the writing or not, I did put a lot of effort into this project. I feel very strongly that, although America is lost for now, the possibility does exist that in some time in the future there will be an opportunity to try that great experiment again provided that we conservatives begin laying the ground work today. So, if I have succeeded in convincing one conservative to stay the course, I will consider my effort as having been worthwhile.

Believe it or not, I actually had one more post in mind for this series. It was going to be on the subject of Leadership and Salesmanship. If this idea I am promoting has a chance of taking off, it will be because people with those skills make it happen. But, I will do a stand alone post on that subject one of these days.

Well, now you know what I’m  thinking. What are your thoughts?

Original Post:  Conservatives on Fire


Is It Time For Conservatives To Start Thinking Long Term?


In the world of business, especially in the corporate world, they make use of short-term, mid-term, and long-term planning. Typically this begins at the department head level. Someone(s) further up the chain then consolidates these plans into plans for the division and those plans will be consolidated to produce short, mid, and long.term plans for the corporation. Short-term might mean one year, mid-term might mean three years, and long-term might mean ten.years, just as an example. The short-term plans are typically the basis for annual budgets. Mid-term plans alert management to many things they need to be doing in the way of more detailed planning.  An example might be that a new product is scheduled to come on-line in that three-year period and, therefore the marketing people must begin finalizing their marketing approach for the new product. Long-term plans typically don’t change much from year to year. They are useful for many reasons one of which is that they often show certain trends that are appearing that must be watched because if they continue they can have major impacts on the business.

Obviously, planning is useful in many, if not all, aspects of life, right? And, one more thing before I end this short lesson of the principles of planning. There is a Cardinal rule in planning. This cardinal rule states that a plan is not a plan until it is put in writing, A plan that is not put in writing is not a plan. It is an idea. Plans and ideas are two very different things. Plans in writing are never cast in concrete. Plans can always be modified, changed, and improved upon. In other words, plans are living documents.

Let’s talk briefly about how America got in the mess it is in today? There is no single or short answer to that question. But, an important part of the answer is that some people applied some very effective short, mid, and long-term planning to make America what it is today.

About 100 years ago, some serious thinker who truly believed in the teachings of Karl Marx arrived at the conclusion in groups and by individuals that their dream of a workers paradise, their dream of defeating capitalism was not going to be achieved by the use of force. These people concluded that they would have to take the long-term view of gradually defeating capitalism from within. They looked at the United States of America, the bastion of capitalist free enterprise and realized that they had a serious problem.  They realized they would have little chance of convincing America’s working class that their worker’s paradise was a better way to go. The reason, of course, was that the American working class was enjoying great benefits from America’s capitalist economy. Their quality of life was improving rapidly. It never occurred to these socialist thinker that they might be wrong; that maybe capitalism was better than their ideas. These thinkers were convinced beyond any shadow of a doubt that their worker0s paradise was the very best way for mankind to live together. For them it was like a religion. And so, they began putting together short, mid, and long-term plans to destroy capitalism in America from within. And yes, they put their ideas into writing and, thereby, converted their ideas into plans. Articles and even books were written and circulated among like-minded people so that they could add to, and modify them, or write plans of their own and circulate them. In this way they developed, although somewhat vague, at first, plans for remaking America. They were convinced that by this approach, Americans would one day wake up and find that they were living in a socialist country. These plans were not secret. They were not bashful about talking about their plans in public.

Well, it is now 100 years later and we all know how well their plans have worked out for them, don’t we? America today is almost where they want it to be.

Tell me something. How many times over the last couple of years have you heard/read a conservative blogger or pundit cry: “What is wrong with we conservatives? Why can’t we learn from the successes of the left and use some of their same strategies and tactics to slow down their progress and eventually reverse the course America is on?” Many times, right? But, what I haven’t seen, although they may be out there somewhere, is any of us converting our ideas in to plans.

What I am asking you, dear friends, is isn’t it time to face reality and accept that we are not going to get our America back in the short-term. Short of a miracle, that is not in the cards, is it? So, isn’t it time for conservatives to start converting our ideas into short, mid, and long-term plans?

On Thanksgiving day, I came across an article by Andrew Klavan. I have to admit that I didn’t know that Andrew Klavan wrote articles. I thought he only made his “Klavan on rhe Culture” videos that we enjoy so much, it goes to show how out of touch I can be. The title of his article is “The Long Game . Interestingly the article was published on November 7, 2012, the day after we all learned that Barack Obama had won a second term. Unlike most of us armchair quarterbacks, he was not pointing fingers or making suggestions about what the Republicans must do now. Instead, Mr. Klavan took and idea and turned into a written plan. He is taking a long-term view on what conservatives need to be doing. The tag line to  his article says: “Three areas the Right should address, financially and intellectually.” The three themes he addresses are:

  • The mainstream news media
  • The entertainment industry
  • Religion for intellectuals

I hope you will read Andrew Klavan’s article because I would like to hear your opinions on a few things. First, I would like to know if you agree that is time for conservatives to start taking a longer view and develop the short, mid, and long-term plans to get our America back. And, there are two things about planning that I should have mentioned at the start. One is that no matter the term of the plan, the starting point is always the goal or objective of the plan. Once there is agreement on what the goals or objectives are, only then can we begin to fill in the details of a plan on how to achieve those goals. The other important point is that the short and mid-term plans need to fit or complement the over-all or long-term plan. It doesn’t matter if the long-term plan is vague. That’s the norm. The short and mid-term plans over time will improve and clarify the long-term plan.

Besides that, I would like to know what you think about…. I almost said his ideas, but it is more than ideas it is something approaching a plan….the three aspects of Klavan¡s  plan. Do you agree with what he is saying or would you have other key themes in your plan? And, most importantly for me is, do you think Klavan’s plan could be a seed to provoke other conservative thinkers to turn their ideas into  suggested plan that other can chew on and eventually arrive at a good but vague long-term plan that conservatives will buy into and begin the long process of getting America back; if not for us, then for future generations of Americans.

Well, now you know what I’m thinking.  What are your thoughts?.

Original Post:  Conservatives on Fire